1 Thursday, 1 March 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
5 [The witness entered court]
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Good morning, Mr. Petritsch.
7 THE WITNESS: Good morning.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Your examination by Mr. Stamp will now continue.
9 Mr. Stamp.
10 MR. STAMP: [Microphone not activated]
11 Thank you very much, Your Honour.
12 WITNESS: WOLFGANG PETRITSCH [Resumed]
13 Examination by Mr. Stamp: [Continued]
14 Q. Good morning, Ambassador.
15 A. Good morning, sir.
16 Q. I would like us if we can, Ambassador, move a little bit more
17 quickly through the documents than we did yesterday, since there are so
18 many. And if we could move to document P2660. Could that be brought up,
19 please. And I think some -- P2660 can be P2660.
20 I think, if I may say, that this document perhaps reflects to some
21 degree the overall difficulties that the mediation group had in trying to
22 work for a compromise. At the end of the first paragraph, the last
23 sentence I'll ask you to comment on, if you can.
24 "It is becoming increasingly clear, however, that the real reason
25 for the Kosovar intransigence is the dissolution of the KLA as foreseen in
1 the agreement."
2 Can you comment on that briefly.
3 A. Yes. When the Kosovo Albanian side, in particular the KLA, took
4 the lead in these negotiations that was expressed by the fact that one of
5 the KLA so-called leaders, Mr. Thaqi, was selected to be the chair of the
6 negotiating team of the Kosovar Albanians, they only came to realise, so
7 to speak, that what they will have to sign up is the dissolution, the
8 demilitarisation of their very own organisation and that clearly, knowing
9 a little bit about the structure of the KLA, was clear that this is going
10 to be the main obstacle. So in this way it was good that the president or
11 the chair or the chief negotiator, so to speak, was one from the KLA,
12 because that was really the tough issue as such and that was the chance to
13 stop violence by demilitarising the armed part of the Kosovar Albanian
15 The second question is also addressed and that is the referendum.
16 They wanted to have a referendum explicitly in the agreement, and we
17 successfully managed to keep this out.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: You commenced that answer by referring to when the
19 Kosovo Albanian side in particular the KLA took the lead in these
20 negotiations. Is that a reference to the fact that efforts were being
21 made to reach agreement with them; in other words, that the negotiators
22 were addressing them as the first candidate, or do you mean that somehow
23 or other the Kosovo Albanians were dictating what would happen?
24 THE WITNESS: No, it was so that in the group of the Kosovar
25 Albanians, they were deeply factioned, deeply divided between the more
1 conservative group of Rugova and then the armed groups around the KLA and
2 it was clear for us that you need to get the radicals on board, so to
3 speak, to sign up that then this agreement would hold, because Rugova
4 himself was not a friend of the KLA; on the contrary, he made a point in
5 time in the past maintained that the KLA is invention of the Serb side.
6 So that was the deep split inside the Kosovar Albanian negotiating
7 team and the radicals around Thaqi and the other KLA representatives were,
8 of course, the most difficult ones since they had to sign up to the
9 dissolution of their very own organisation. That is the point --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: I understand that. But was there a nominal leader
11 of the Kosovar Albanian delegation?
12 THE WITNESS: Yes, in Rambouillet Hashim Thaqi was elected by the
13 delegation, Kosovar Albanian delegation, to be their leader in
15 JUDGE BONOMY: What did you understand was the position held by
16 him in the Kosovo Liberation Army?
17 THE WITNESS: As far as I know, he was one of the political heads
18 from the political wing of the KLA.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
20 Mr. Stamp.
21 MR. STAMP: Thank you very much, Your Honour.
22 Q. If I may, could you just follow-up on that. Could you just name
23 quickly the members of the Kosovar Albanian delegation?
24 A. That's a very long list. I would not.
25 Q. The leading members.
1 A. It was of course Hashim Thaqi, it was Rugova, Ibrahim Rugova, and
2 there were several others that were there from the independent side,
3 so-called independent side, Veton Surroi, a publisher, and Blerim Shala,
4 also a publisher. These were the so-called independent members of the
5 group and then there were representatives of all the Kosovar Albanian
6 parties in there.
7 Q. Very well. Could we move on to another part of this document 2260
8 [sic] And this is the third paragraph and I quote: "Agreement was reached
9 at 0415 hours with the Kosovar negotiation team on all points with the
10 exception of the review clause. Then at 5.25 hours Hill and Gef," Gef
11 being yourself, the undersigned?
12 A. The undersigned, yeah.
13 Q. "Informed the whole Kosovar delegation about the contents of the
14 review clause. The clause contains the most recent Kosovar proposal,
15 though the word 'referendum" has been removed. The clause now reads as
16 follows ..."
17 The clause is in the German text, the original German text of the
19 A. In English, it's quoted in English.
20 Q. It's quoted in English?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And therefore not translated.
23 MR. STAMP: Can we look at the original. Can we look at the
24 original German -- I'm sorry.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, are you not saying it was originally drafted
1 in English?
2 THE WITNESS: Yes, and it's -- but it is not included in the
3 translation that is in front of you on the screen and it is in the German
4 which is now in the original version which is now on the screen on the
5 left side.
6 MR. STAMP:
7 Q. I'm sorry, it --
8 A. "Three years after entry ..." it reads.
9 Q. Yes. Now --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: And I take it the reference to a side letter, which
11 is highlighted there, means that it's a letter of which the Serbs would
12 not be aware?
13 THE WITNESS: Yes.
14 MR. STAMP: Did the --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Is that a normal way to carry out this sort of
17 THE WITNESS: Yes.
18 MR. STAMP:
19 Q. Did the --
20 A. That was not done in the name of the negotiators. That was
21 unilateral initiative by the US Secretary of State.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that I had understood, but when I asked the
23 question: Is this the normal way to carry out such negotiations, I was
24 thinking more broadly.
25 THE WITNESS: Yes.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: And you say this is typical of international peace
3 THE WITNESS: Yes.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
5 MR. STAMP:
6 Q. The text we see here of the review clause which was being
7 discussed on the 22nd of February, was this -- where we see that this text
8 made its way with some alterations in the final draft of the Rambouillet
9 Accord of the 23rd of February.
10 MR. STAMP: If we could keep this on the screen and if I could
11 refer the Court to the final accords --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: What does review -- review clause is an odd
13 expression. What does that mean in this context? I understand
15 THE WITNESS: That we revisit the so-called interim agreement
16 after three years. It's the interim -- the Rambouillet Agreement is an
17 interim agreement and therefore it has to have a review clause and this is
18 the review clause.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but on the face of it it commits the person
20 giving this undertaking, the nation, at least giving the undertaking, to
21 testing the will of the people.
22 THE WITNESS: Yes.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
24 THE WITNESS: In this context it's important to refer that the
25 word "expressed" does not appear in the final version of accords. That's
1 to my knowledge now when I look at it the only difference.
2 MR. STAMP:
3 Q. Well, as we get to that, there are actually two differences, but
4 the second one is pretty minor --
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Just tell us them, Mr. Stamp. We don't need to
6 stand on too much formality here.
7 MR. STAMP: Very well. I'm now referring to chapter 8 of the --
8 of Exhibit 474 and it reads verbatim as this provision here before the
9 Court reads except that -- chapter 4 reads: "Three years after the
10 entry," so there is the expression of the word "the."
11 THE WITNESS: Yes.
12 MR. STAMP: And in the third line whereas in the document before
13 Rambouillet before the Court now or in e-court now it reads: "On the
14 basis of the expressed will of the people." In the accords of the 23rd of
15 February the word "expressed," as indicated by the witness, was removed so
16 it reads "on the basis of the will of the people."
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, it's certainly not immediately obvious to me
18 that either of these changes makes any material difference to the
19 document -- to the clause.
20 MR. STAMP:
21 Q. Now, Ambassador, the removal of the word --
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila.
23 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] I really do not want to obstruct the
24 examination-in-chief carried out by Mr. Stamp, but if it's a letter, some
25 letter, that the Serbs had not seen and this correspondence between his
1 excellency and Mr. Hill. What is the relevance of this? Why am I
2 listening to all of this here? What Mr. Petritsch showed on the 28th of
3 February to the Serbs, that is what was important, that is what we were
4 supposed to accept or not, right? This is some kind of internal
5 correspondence with Ambassador Hill that shows that America is stronger
6 than anybody else, which I knew all along but ...
7 JUDGE BONOMY: I certainly disagree with you, Mr. Fila, and I'll
8 consult my colleagues, but it seems to me that, if anything, this may be
9 favourable to you and therefore relevant. But I'll consult my colleagues
10 and see if they wish to stop this potentially favourable material
12 [Trial Chamber confers]
13 JUDGE BONOMY: We are all of the view that this is relevant.
14 Please continue, Mr. Stamp.
15 MR. STAMP:
16 Q. So without bringing up the Rambouillet Accords of the 23rd, can
17 you explain to us what is the significance of this provision or what was
18 this provision intended to convey and why it was -- the word "expressed"
19 was taken out.
20 A. Well, it was -- what the reason behind this is we wanted to tone
21 down the will of the people. I mean, the will of the people, of course,
22 is the democratic right to choose to do anything that expresses the will
23 of the people, so in fact, it is nothing really special. There were two
24 points in there that the Kosovar Albanians wanted, that is"expressed
25 will," in order to underline the will, so to speak, of the people; and
1 they also wanted to have the will of its people. And we wanted to have
2 this in more general terms as the will of the people, and the people, of
3 course, includes everyone, including the Serbs.
4 So the democratic rights are indivisible. This is not something
5 that can only be accorded to one group. That is what is behind, that it
6 was the Contact Group then, the Contact Group political directors which
7 made this point, Your Honour, to say "expressed" needs to go out. It
8 might be more of a political issue than a legal one, but nevertheless, it
9 is in the context of the referendum discussion, a very important one. And
10 if I may, Your Honour, I think it is extremely important, because this is
11 one of the crucial issues, is the so-called referendum.
12 Now, we know referenda in the Balkans were a double-edged sword.
13 They led into wars like in the case of Bosnia and Herzegovina. So the
14 international community had learned of a time no referenda. In an
15 ethnically dominated and conditioned society, not a civil society, where
16 ethnicity is so overhandedly important as is the case with the Serbs and
17 the Albanians alike, referenda do not make democratic sense. That is -- I
18 know that is a highly - how should I say? - contentious issue, but it is
19 important to keep this in mind, these are ethnocracies and not
20 democracies. That's what needs to be kept in mind when we talk about it.
21 Now, when the American side said they would be ready to issue a
22 side letter, we Europeans were totally opposed to it. The Kosovar
23 Albanian side wanted now -- they found out that the Americans would be
24 ready to sign such a side letter. Then they said, why don't we also need
25 this from the Europeans. And they asked me, "Mr. Petritsch, we want a
1 letter from the European Union to the same effect," and I we absolutely
2 was against it, and I knew that this would be backed up by the European
3 Union, by the European Union Presidency, Germany at the time so that in
4 the end we succeeded and as this document P2660 reads -- later on if you
5 can could go on this. I only have it in German in front of me. It's
6 towards the end on the second page. I would like to read out this to you
7 what it says. Yes, it's here, but this is not a German and now -- and
8 here it reads: "The Kosovo delegation was informed by Albright, amongst
9 others, that the referendum and the continued existence of the KLA were
10 out of the question."
11 So that was the result of an -- of a discussion between the
12 European and American negotiators and teams. This needs to be stressed
13 that, yes, the Americans wanted to do this, but we were able to convince
14 them that this is not the right way to do.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Does that simply mean that how the will of the
16 people is determined is not provided for?
17 THE WITNESS: That's correct.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: And does that mean American can decide what the
19 will of the people is?
20 THE WITNESS: No, I mean, the people can decide what their will
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but how do they make it known unless they
23 express it?
24 THE WITNESS: Well, elections, referenda, whatever. But it was
25 important for us to make the point that it is not part of the agreement
1 because then it would be legally binding, whereas in the case where you
2 say the will of the people, then clearly, I mean, we cannot avoid or
3 prevent the will of the people to be expressed.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: We can all understand the distinction between a
5 referendum and an election, but both are expressions of the will of the
7 THE WITNESS: Correct.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: And the word "expression" being removed suggests to
9 me the possibility that someone other than the people will determine what
10 their will is.
11 THE WITNESS: That's not correct.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
13 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry. No, I beg to differ.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, what is the significance? How would it be
15 done that would not involve an expression of will?
16 THE WITNESS: That is very clear that after three years you would
17 have elections, you have progress --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: How are elections anything but the expression of
19 the will of the people?
20 THE WITNESS: Correct.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
22 Mr. Stamp.
23 MR. STAMP:
24 Q. If we read on, it speaks of the will of the people, the opinions
25 of relevant authorities, and each parties' efforts regarding
1 implementation of this agreement, the Helsinki Final Act. So the review
2 three years hence, according to these provisions, would be based on the
3 will of the people as expressed here and you indicated that the political
4 director of the EU wanted the word "expressed" removed but also on other
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Can you comment briefly on this.
8 A. Yes. Well, as you can see, it is rather pedestrian language in
9 here. What the reason behind was is to demonstrate that there is not
10 going to be a unilateral decision by the Kosovar Albanians for
11 independence, for example. Yeah. So therefore we put in: Yes, of
12 course, as Your Honour has indicated, will of the people, that's of
13 course, a very relevant and important part of it, but there is also
14 opinions of relevant authorities. Again, in a vague way, all those who
15 are relevant, of course including Belgrade, each parties' efforts
16 regarding the implementation of this agreement, that again both are in
18 Serbs have a say and Belgrade has a say, as well as the Kosovar
19 Albanians and the Helsinki Final Act, and the Helsinki Final Act of
20 course, one of the greatest achievements of the Conference on Security and
21 Cooperation in Europe was that there was not going to be a change of
22 internationally recognised borders by force. That is the gist of the
23 Helsinki Final Act. And there, clearly, that clearly means that both
24 sides, Belgrade and Pristina, have to agree to the final settlement.
25 This was the, in my opinion, one of the most important parts of
1 the -- of the Rambouillet Accords, that we continued to keep the
2 Serb/Yugoslav side on -- in the decision-making about the future of
3 Kosovo, and that was unfortunately not grasped or not accepted by the
4 Yugoslav side when signing up and not signing up to it. That is one of
5 the crucial issues in these whole Rambouillet Accords.
6 Q. Thank you, sir. If we could move again very quickly to P2659.
7 Which reflects a position in respect to the negotiation on the 23rd of
8 February, 1999, at 1230 hours. I see in the fourth paragraph it indicates
9 that: "The Yugoslav/Serbian delegation, in turn, rejected most of the
10 revisions to the text made during the night and started questioning areas
11 which were considered to be concluded. Appendices chapters 5 (civil
12 implementation, 2 and 7 (security/police and military issues) which had
13 already been submitted have now been disavowed."
14 This in a general sense indicates what was happening on that day.
15 Can you briefly comment on this, what the situation was at 1230 on the
17 A. Yes, well, clearly, we were now after the third promulgation of
18 the peace talks, it became now abundantly clear to both sides that we were
19 reaching an end, and now nervousness clearly got up very much. We had all
20 the foreign ministers there and the whole team was assembled and we at the
21 same time knew what we would be able to finish was the political part.
22 That was the -- that was also decreed and asked for by the Contact Group
23 foreign ministers. Unless we have agreement in -- basic agreement on the
24 political parts of the Rambouillet Accords, there is no necessity and no
25 use to go on. So there, clearly, we had a lot of meetings to this effect
1 to see to it that this would, in fact, be the case.
2 Now, both sides, of course, were eyeing each other very carefully
3 and seeing who moves closer to signing up or to -- for a compromise and
4 that is, so to speak, reflected now in this report, because this report
5 has to be seen with -- was written at 12.30. This is half an hour before
6 the deadline is -- was up to comment on the final draft. Yeah. And
7 that -- this part of the report needs to be seen in the context with the
8 letter addressed by the head of the Yugoslav delegation, Professor Ratko
9 Markovic, through the three mediators, Christopher Hill, myself, and Boris
10 Mayorski. This is the nexus in order to understand the full meaning of
12 Q. Thank you, so I take it, then, that by 1.00, there had been a
13 deadline set at -- for 1.00 --
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. -- for there to be some agreement in respect to the --
16 A. To respond to the final draft in written form, whether they can
17 agree, and then after three weeks go on or not.
18 Q. Okay. Could we now move --
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. --
20 Q. -- to P625? That's a letter.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Petritsch, did the rejection of revisions by
22 the Yugoslav delegation happen coincidentally with Thaqi's U-turn or was
23 it prompted by his U-turn?
24 THE WITNESS: Well, of course, this is pure speculation, but
25 clearly, there is a nexus.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the question was a bad one. Did they know
2 about his U-turn is what I should have confined the question to.
3 THE WITNESS: Well, we were all in the same castle, so you can
4 imagine that, although they were not talking to each other, they know of
5 each other.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
7 MR. STAMP: Exhibit P625, please. That is a letter of the 23rd of
8 February, 1999, signed by Professor Dr. Ratko Markovic, the head of the
9 Serbian delegation.
10 Q. Having regard to what you mentioned about the 1.00 deadline,
11 how -- in what circumstances did this letter come to be transmitted to the
12 troika, so to speak?
13 A. Well, at 1.00 we received a first letter by -- by the Yugoslav
14 side and when -- when we read it we realised that it was actually
15 indicating that the negotiations had failed. It would have been taken as
16 such by the Contact Group foreign ministers. So I then had a meeting with
17 Mr. Sainovic, with whom I'd established over time an excellent working
18 relationship, was the most constructive force in terms of seeing the
19 overall situation and the necessity to come to a positive outcome. And
20 with Mr. Sainovic -- to Mr. Sainovic I conveyed that this letter is simply
21 insufficient and would be taken as something that would basically spell
22 the end of the Rambouillet talks -- the failure of the talks.
23 Then Mr. Sainovic obviously went back to his delegation and at
24 1430 hours a second letter appeared, which already indicated that they
25 would be ready to -- to continue the negotiations after this hiatus of
1 three weeks and with a focus on implementation, and that was what we
2 wanted. In Rambouillet to finish the political part all in all. Again, I
3 must say as long as not all is agreed, nothing is agreed; that was
4 understood. But nevertheless, there should be an indication grosso moto
5 we can live with the political part, and that, by the way, was also
6 expressed by Mr. Milutinovic vis-a-vis the two co-chairs, the two foreign
7 ministers, at an earlier stage.
8 Now, and then without asking, actually, we received a third letter
9 at 1600 hours, and this is the letter in front of you. And this letter
10 clearly indicates - and I believe one should read it from line 1 to the
11 last line - that there is a clear indication that are ready to go on and
12 after the return to France to negotiate the implementation of this
13 accord: And the key sentence in all of this is: "The federal
14 republic" -- it is the one, two, three, the fourth paragraph: "The FRY
15 agreed to discuss the scope and character of international presence in
16 Kosmet to implement the agreement to be accepted in Rambouillet."
17 So that was the key word "the implementation of the agreement to
18 be accepted in Rambouillet," and it was crucial that it says
19 "international presence" and not restricting it to "international civilian
20 presence." That was the key to it. It has to be open - this was the
21 message which I also conveyed to Mr. Sainovic - that you have to find a
22 way to indicate that you are open for the continuation, and the
23 continuation means the implementation issues, and there must not be a
24 restriction to civilian. So therefore, international presence, of course,
25 includes both civilian and military presence.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Is this a different exhibit number?
3 MR. STAMP: 625 --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: I thought there was a revised version of the
6 THE WITNESS: That was the last --
7 MR. STAMP: This --
8 THE WITNESS: This is the valid one, the last one. The others are
9 not here.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: So the one -- P625 is the one that's sent after
11 you've met Mr. Sainovic?
12 THE WITNESS: Yes.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Prior to that there was a letter --
14 THE WITNESS: -- which is not here --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: -- of a similar nature but --
16 THE WITNESS: -- insufficient --
17 JUDGE BONOMY: -- without commitment or whatever.
18 THE WITNESS: Yes.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: And we haven't seen that.
20 THE WITNESS: Yes.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
22 MR. STAMP:
23 Q. You said that Milutinovic had -- I'm sorry, I beg your pardon.
24 [Trial Chamber confers]
25 MR. STAMP:
1 Q. You indicated that Mr. Milutinovic had indicated a position in
2 respect to the political elements of the accords vis-a-vis the two
3 co-chairs. Can you expand on that briefly?
4 A. I'm afraid I will not find right away the relevant document, but
5 it is in one of those exhibited documents, but I'm afraid I will not be
6 able to immediately identify it.
7 Q. Very well. I will find it and get back to it.
8 A. Okay.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: You can also file a document like that in writing
10 if you find it after the witness has given evidence. He's said what he
11 can about it so far in the absence of the document itself.
12 MR. STAMP: Very well, Mr. President.
13 Could we move now to 2658, document entitled "Final Report of the
14 Kosovo Negotiations in Rambouillet."
15 Q. I think the document has to be looked at in total, Ambassador, but
16 we don't have time to go through all of it here. Here. I'd like to --
17 you to comment briefly therefore on one or two points. If we look to the
18 sixth bullet point down on the first page, you commented in this dispatch
19 that there was: "Good cooperation within the negotiating troika, in
20 particular with the Russian Federation's Ambassador Mayorski. After he
21 had calmed down about Annexes 2 and 1(A), (security/police and military,
22 later to become chapters 2 and 7 of the agreement) at the end of the first
23 week of negotiations, he cooperated in an extremely constructive manner."
24 Briefly comment what he was to calm down about.
25 A. Well, of course for any Russian official, NATO is a red flag, so
1 to speak, and it was clear that he was not very happy about this that NATO
2 has put forward the proposal, whereas he actually wanted to first
3 negotiate the -- the civilian parts. In fact, later on, we took this
4 venue and we focused in Rambouillet on the civilian issues, on the
5 political part of it, but clearly he was aware from the very beginning,
6 from the first week, that these -- that there is going to be a military
7 part to the treaty and clearly he recognised the necessity. It was more
8 about the timing and the point in time or point in the negotiations when
9 it should be introduced into the negotiations. But all in all, it was a
10 very -- a very genuine cooperation, in a very transparent way everything
11 that was decided between the three of us was decided in a cooperative, in
12 a collegial way. It was simply otherwise not possible. So there is no
13 secret to it, you know.
14 What the countries - and this is what I say in parenthesis, Your
15 Honour, because you made reference to it - what the countries on a
16 bilateral or individual basis then did, so to speak, outside the formal
17 framework of the negotiations, this is another story. Yeah. But the
18 negotiations - and I'm talking about as part of this troika - there we had
19 the utmost transparency. So we met each morning how the day is going to
20 look. We met always in the troika format with the two foreign ministers,
21 with the OSCE -- at the time it was Norway which had a chair in the
22 OSCE -- and with all the others. That was an established principle and
23 would not have worked otherwise.
24 Q. Thank you. In the next bullet point it indicates that there
25 was: "Strong European components in the negotiations (venue
1 co-chairmanship of Cook/Vedrine, EUSE," being yourself?
2 A. Yeah.
3 Q. "Towards the end in particular, however, the United States of
4 America tried to take over negotiations (Hill's trip to Belgrade, presence
5 for days on end of Secretary of State Albright in Paris and Rambouillet);
6 prominence of the significance of PR."
7 What is PR?
8 A. Public relations.
9 Q. The question is this: In the circumstances there in Rambouillet,
10 notwithstanding the manoeuvres of various parties, did what you indicated
11 here, the attempt to take over negotiations by the United States, did that
13 A. No, it did not happen in the end, as I was explaining before.
14 This document is clearly an internal document so officially one would not
15 talk about the competition between the Europeans and the Americans, but it
16 was a fact, it is every day fact of life there is competition even among
17 friends, clearly. So in this respect what we wanted to point out is that
18 in -- compared to the Dayton negotiations, which took place in the United
19 States, which were dominated by the Americans and the Europeans basically
20 did not play a role, that was not the case in Rambouillet where the mere
21 fact that the co-chairs were two European foreign ministers that one of
22 the three negotiators was representing the European Union. That in itself
23 already indicated that the European factor was stronger than in Dayton.
24 And towards the end when we thought we would be successful because
25 we had a lot of indications from all sides, also from the Yugoslav side
1 telling me -- like Branko Brankovic, one of the diplomatic advisors,
2 telling me: We need more time, we see -- we understand that this does not
3 work without the military component but we need more time. You cannot
4 rush us into an agreement. There, of course the Americans realised --
5 they wanted to sort of be with the winners when this -- if and when there
6 is a successful conclusion of these negotiations. That is a little bit
7 this internal European/American competition which comes to the fore and
8 which is expressed in these lines.
9 Q. If we look at the next page --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you move away from this, Mr. Stamp.
11 Were you surprised at all, Mr. Petritsch, that so much of this
12 material was released publicly?
13 THE WITNESS: I was not consulted on this. I don't -- I have no
14 knowledge. Obviously, it did -- it must have come from my ministry or so.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, it indicates a great degree of cooperation
16 with this Tribunal --
17 THE WITNESS: Yes.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: -- which the Tribunal does not always experience.
19 THE WITNESS: I must say that this indeed -- I first saw this when
20 I was preparing myself and the court provided me with those documents that
21 are going to be discussed here. I had no say in my ministry about these
22 documents, and when you read them you can see, of course, it captures a
23 moment in time and is not necessarily, of course, something written for
24 future historians or to have us look good or so. It is a real -- a very
25 sober reflection and account of what we knew at this very moment in time.
1 I think that needs to be kept in mind when you read this.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: But it's really what we need --
3 THE WITNESS: Absolutely.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: -- what in many situations in this Tribunal is
6 Mr. Stamp.
7 MR. STAMP: Thanks, Your Honour.
8 Q. At page 2, the second bullet point there: "The US game plan to
9 present Belgrade with the bombing scenario failed." And you give
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Can you explain what that means. Can you --
13 A. Well, as we have spoken yesterday about the - how should I say? -
14 division of labour that the Americans clearly could in a much more
15 credible way demonstrate the military resolve as compared to the Europeans
16 or the Russians. It was clear at the end of Rambouillet, where we wanted
17 on the 23rd to see a result and to have them both sign, that the Yugoslav
18 side - meaning basically Milosevic - was unimpressed. And I also list
19 internal other reasons. Clearly it was -- it was not just Russia, as I
20 say, but also European/NATO countries, Italy, also France in part.
21 That is very important to see that we went the extra mile. We
22 wanted to reach a peaceful agreement, and the Europeans were pushing very,
23 very hard for a peaceful agreement. And the frustration, of course, on
24 our -- on the European side with the Yugoslav side was that this was not
25 taken up, that here is -- that here is a group, the Europeans, that really
1 wanted to settle the Kosovo issue in a peaceful way and that we were in
2 for a genuine compromise, taking into consideration the realities on the
3 ground; however, doing this in the framework of the sovereignty and
4 territorial integrity of Yugoslavia.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 MR. STAMP: If we could move on quickly to document P2814.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Just a passing thought again, Mr. Petritsch, on
8 which your comment would be valuable. Did you see a difference between
9 the obligations you would have expect -- you would expect of an
10 established state like Yugoslavia or, indeed, Serbia and what you would
11 expect from a mixed group of representatives of an entity that had
12 ambitions, as it were, and included some who would be described by the
13 reports as terrorists. Did you view them as having different levels of
14 responsibility to ensure agreement was reached?
15 THE WITNESS: Definitely. I think there was something of an
16 invisible partnership between the state actor, Yugoslavia, and the
17 international community, since the international community's built upon
18 states, clearly. And the rebellion on the part of the Kosovar Albanians,
19 of course, had very clear reasons, and that is when in 1989 Mr. Milosevic
20 abandoned the autonomy status of Kosovo. That was the source of the
21 conflict. Clearly, the problems date well back into -- into 1981, the
22 student rebellion, all this stuff --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: I wasn't thinking of --
24 THE WITNESS: -- but --
25 JUDGE BONOMY: -- that sort of situation, and there are good
1 reasons for not inviting you to go back into that territory. I was
2 thinking more from a purely theoretical position, really, because of the
3 different status that the two sides had here, whether you regarded one as
4 having a greater obligation to go the extra mile than the other in the
5 hope that that might result in agreement.
6 THE WITNESS: Well, of course, I mean, we -- since the framework
7 was very clear -- clearly laid down, it applied equally to both sides, but
8 formally speaking, a state, of course, has a higher degree of relevance
9 than a non-state actor.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
11 Mr. Stamp.
12 MR. STAMP: The -- this is P2814.
13 Q. The Contact Group made a statement on the 23rd of February which
14 in some way summarises what you had been through. If you could focus very
15 briefly on paragraph 4. It says: "A political framework is now in place,
16 as set out in the Rambouillet Accords, and the groundwork has thereby been
17 laid for finalising the implementation chapters of the agreement,
18 including modalities of the invited international civilian and military
19 presence in Kosovo."
20 So I take it from this and the remainder of the paragraph that the
21 understanding was that the political constitution and framework was
22 basically agreed upon?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Now, we have looked at some of the provisions of the accords in
25 respect to the military implementation and the review clause. Were these
1 closed or were these open to negotiations once it is accepted that the
2 basic political framework had been settled?
3 A. You are referring now to the military implementation part or to
4 the civilian or both?
5 Q. The military implementation part.
6 A. Well, clearly what is expressed here, a political framework is now
7 in place, means the grosso moto. Again I need to stress this clearly:
8 Unless everything is agreed, nothing is agreed, that is still the formula
9 and I have to repeat it, but it was clear that we had finished negotiating
10 this part and that we then in the next step go into the implementation
11 chapters of the agreement, including the modalities and the invited
12 international civilian and military presence in Kosovo, and that you need
13 to keep in mind is the Contact Group statement with -- including Russia.
14 That is very important to stress. There is no disagreement on the part of
15 the Contact Group, that there is a civilian and a military part and the
16 implementation issue is going to be negotiated in the second round of the
18 Q. And therefore it follows here in the same paragraph: "It is
19 essential that the agreement on the interim accord be completed and signed
20 as a whole. In this spirit, the parties committed themselves to attend a
21 conference, covering all aspects of implementation, in France on the 15th
22 March, following consultations with the parties and relevant international
24 That --
25 A. That just spells out the way forward, yes, the agreed way forward.
1 Q. And you have in your statement and in the transcript indicated
2 thereafter that there was a refusal on the part of the Yugoslav side to
3 proceed in the way as indicated here?
4 A. Well, after the letter which I have referred to of February 23rd,
5 where there is a clear commitment to continue and it was also pointed out
6 that major progress has been achieved in the talks in Rambouillet in the
7 final political solution of substantial self-government of Kosovo and
8 Metohija, respectful of the sovereignty," and so on. And then it also
9 says: "Yugoslav representatives are fully ready to continue the work in
10 line with the positive spirit of this meeting."
11 So on the late afternoon of the very last day of Rambouillet, the
12 very -- the positive spirit of this meeting was emphasised in writing by
13 the Yugoslav delegation. I wonder whether -- when and how the issue of a
14 scam and the dictat and all this stuff came in. Now, obviously something
15 happened between the 23rd of February and the resumption of the
16 negotiations on the 15th of March in Paris.
17 When I say "something happened," then this is the change of
18 attitude on the part of the Yugoslav delegation, and that is also
19 reflected in our personal meetings which we had in the interim period,
20 with EU Presidency, Germany, Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer, who came to
21 visit, President Milosevic, and our travels there, and also in a statement
22 by the President of Serbia, Mr. Milutinovic, a lengthy statement, where
23 you can read -- it's of March the 4th or the 5th -- where you can clearly
24 see a total change of attitude in regard to Rambouillet and to the
25 Rambouillet process.
1 Q. Thank you, Ambassador. Much of that is dealt with in detail in
2 your statement and particularly in the transcript of your evidence, so I
3 will move on. I'd like to go back in history now to the circumstances
4 which led up to Rambouillet, the developing circumstances in Kosovo. And
5 I am going - for the sake of time - to go through this very, very quickly.
6 If we could look at Exhibit 2655. This document is a Telefax with talking
7 points sent by your embassy in Belgrade on the 4th of August, 1998.
8 Briefly tell us what this is.
9 A. Well, the Telefax basically is just to forward to colleagues in
10 the US embassy, the French, the German, the Italian, and the British
11 embassy speaking points for a joint Contact Group demarche on the
12 humanitarian situation in Kosovo, and that was in August -- on August the
13 4th. And it's -- basically said that these are the speaking notes for a
14 demarche, we will not hand over anything in writing, it's going to be an
15 oral presentation on the humanitarian situation in Kosovo. And the
16 freedom of access for humanitarian non-governmental organisations which
17 was worked out, this now -- these speaking points was worked out by the
18 British and the Austrian embassies.
19 Q. Could we move on to the second page of that document.
20 A. And the second page has the actual speaking points. With these we
21 went. We asked for a person from the foreign ministry to meet us and then
22 according to these speaking points, we voiced our major concerns, that the
23 offensive, the military offensive, is continuing; reports about looting
24 and burning of houses and setting fire to unharvested fields by members of
25 the FRY security forces; the number of internally displaced persons grows
1 every day and their situation is worsening: Malnutrition, water shortage,
2 dehydration, communicable diseases, particular danger to vulnerable
3 groups -- I might be too fast now for the translators -- children, elderly
4 and sick.
5 It is difficult for humanitarian organisations to reach IDPs
6 because of continued fighting and because many are hiding in woods and
7 mountains; some organisations have encountered problems being granted
8 access to areas where IDPs are staying, some organisations were unable to
9 work effectively because their radio equipment has been confiscated, I
10 should add by the Serb authorities; the plight of the IDPs now getting a
11 lot of attention in the international media and the Serb authorities are
12 being blamed for this humanitarian catastrophe. And therefore, we urge
13 the government to cease all hostilities immediately; stop the forces
14 damaging houses and property; prevent looting; allow full access to all
15 humanitarian organisations, not only the International Committee of the
16 Red Cross and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees; provide
17 possibilities for proper radio communication for the humanitarian
18 organisation; provide all possible assistance for the return of the IDPs.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 A. And then we also indicated that we would be of assistance in
21 bringing back to their proper homes the IDPs.
22 Q. Now, when you --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: What -- what was your source of information about
24 the situation of displaced persons within Kosovo?
25 THE WITNESS: At the time, starting on the 6th of July, the
1 so-called Kosovo Diplomatic Observer Mission, that was based on the
2 agreement between Presidents Milosevic and Yeltsin in Moscow in mid-June.
3 So we were there, diplomatic observers, several hundred, from the European
4 Union. We had so-called ECMM, European Community Monitoring Mission,
5 which was an established body throughout former Yugoslavia, doing this
6 kind of work which we were now focusing on Kosovo, then the American part
7 and the Russian part. So there were three parts, American, Russian, and
8 European observers, travelling throughout Kosovo and taking notes, and we
9 were pulling together, at least each week, once a week, a report, a
10 consolidated report between the Europeans, Americans, and Russians to the
11 United Nations, and that in turn led to UN Resolution 1199 where you have
12 the exact figures of well over 200.000 IDPs and so on and so on.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp, are these consolidated reports exhibits
14 in the case?
15 MR. STAMP: There are some which are available. I do not believe
16 any of the consolidated reports are. They are summarised in the UN
17 Security Council which is an exhibit in the case.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: But that's just the same as this summary here.
19 It's not the source of the material. It's the notice being pass -- did
20 you actually have a meeting with a representative of the Ministry of
21 Foreign Affairs?
22 THE WITNESS: Yes, we did.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: So this is a question that goes to notice, and we
24 understand the significance of passing notice to the Government of
25 Yugoslavia. But I'm more concerned at the moment about the substantial
1 basis for this notice and where we find the evidence to establish 200.000
2 internally displaced persons for example.
3 THE WITNESS: I think UNHCR would be the source.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm more concerned about the source in this case.
5 THE WITNESS: In this case.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: What's actually been produced to us.
7 Anyway, carry on, please, Mr. Stamp.
8 MR. STAMP:
9 Q. When you expressed to the relevant Yugoslav authorities these
10 concerns about the unfolding humanitarian situation, what was the
11 response, generally speaking?
12 A. Well, generally speaking, the response was that it was not that
13 bad, that they are not fighting against the population, that this is
14 against terrorists, and that's -- things happen, so to speak. So it was
15 not a very -- a very constructive response to what we were conveying to
16 the foreign ministry official. But we said in no uncertain terms that
17 this is of the utmost urgency to us and needs to be passed on to the
18 highest political decision-makers at the time.
19 MR. STAMP: Could we look at Exhibit 557 -- P557.
20 Q. This is a dispatch of the 30th of September, 1998, from the
21 Austrian Embassy in Belgrade. You referred to a variety of matters that
22 you can't go into here, but if you look at the second paragraph we have it
23 that: "The most important points made by the Yugoslav president in the
24 discussion which followed are given below." And the last bullet point,
25 that's on the second page.
1 MR. STAMP: We'll have to turn to the second page of the document.
2 Q. It is indicated here that you said that there are perhaps a
3 maximum of 700 IDPs in open-air --
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Further down the page we see section 2: "IDP camps and possible
6 repatriation." And in paragraph 2 of that section you speak of a visit to
7 an IDP camp near Kisna Reka?
8 A. Reka.
9 Q. Reka. Sorry. In which this one camp, it was said to house 2.500
10 to 3.000 persons in total.
11 Can you comment on these two sections that I just pointed out to
13 A. Yes. I think it is -- that is based -- the first part that you
14 said 700 IDPs in open-air, that is -- that was based upon what -- that was
15 said and conveyed to us by Mr. Milosevic when we on the 28th of September
16 handed over the -- then in writing the talking points which we were
17 authorised by our foreign ministers to hand over to the President in
18 regard to the humanitarian situation. And then we did not -- there were
19 no comments -- further comments made on the issue of these talking points,
20 but then Mr. Milosevic went into, say while situation is normalised, KLA
21 is now defeated, we have -- and there are a mere 700 IDPs in open-air.
22 And that was exactly five days after the issuing of Security Council
23 Resolution 1199 where there are -- where it says that -- that and other
24 parts -- there are up to -- yeah, that -- I'm sorry.
25 Gravely concerned on the recent intense fighting in Kosovo and in
1 particular the excessive and indiscriminate use of force by Serbian
2 security forces and the Yugoslav Army which have resulted in numerous
3 civilian casualties and, according to the estimate of the
4 Secretary-General, the displacement of over 230.000 persons from their
5 homes." Of course, we're talking of Kosovo.
6 And then they go on to say: "Deeply concerned by the flow of
7 refugees into northern Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and other European
8 countries as a result of the use of force in Kosovo as well as by the
9 increasing number of displaced persons within Kosovo and other parts of
10 the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia up to 50.000 of whom the United Nations
11 High Commissioner for Refugees has estimated are without shelter and other
12 basic necessities."
13 And at the same time or five days later Mr. Milosevic speaks of
14 700 IDPs only. So that was the discrepancy, the stark discrepancy, in all
15 of our meetings that the nature of the conflict, the casualties, and so on
16 were always played down on the side of the government; and clearly, we had
17 facts to the contrary.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Did you meet Milosevic on this occasion?
19 THE WITNESS: Yes.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: And did you also visit the camp referred to at --
21 THE WITNESS: Yes, Kisna Reka.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: -- Kisna Reka? Thank you.
23 MR. STAMP: If we could move quickly to page 3 of the same
25 Q. Without -- and we're looking at item 3 or paragraph or section 3.
1 Without reading it, we see here that there were also events characterised
2 as massacres. This refers to two events, including one at Gornje Obrinje
3 in the second paragraph in which the -- in which you instructed the ECMM
4 in Pristina to inform the ICTY. Was this also a concern, if you could
5 answer that in two sentences.
6 A. Was it --
7 Q. The issue of excessive force resulting in alleged massacres, was
8 this also a matter of concern to the --
9 A. Yes, absolutely. I mean, I'm very careful in saying alleged
10 massacre, because I was not present at the massacre, but I met a survivor
11 who told the whole grueling story how he survived allegedly, these alleged
12 massacre, that he was only wounded and pretended to be dead and after half
13 an hour, an hour, in the dark, he could escape and we saw his wounds and
14 so on, so that was -- and this we conveyed both -- of course, he had to
15 then be evacuated and brought outside of the country with his family. And
16 we informed ICTY to look into this, but I did not follow-up on this what
17 happened afterwards and so on. But we had information from ECMM, the
18 monitoring mission of the European Union, and all the facts that they had
19 put together, we of course, passed on.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. STAMP: If we could move to Exhibit P560.
22 Q. It is a dispatch of the 7th of October, 1999.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you know, Mr. Stamp, whether this -- this was
24 investigated in detail, was it?
25 MR. STAMP: The Donje Obrinje incident was, as a matter of fact.
1 There was some evidence lead about it in the course of the trial. It -- I
2 shouldn't accept that it was investigated in some detail. There was an
3 attempt to investigate it, but there were limitations on the
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 MR. STAMP:
7 Q. This dispatch deals with your first meeting with Mr. Sainovic, the
8 Yugoslav Vice Prime Minister. I'm not -- I don't think it is necessary
9 for us to go through all of this. Briefly, in the second paragraph you
10 speak of -- you said it was unfortunate and not possible to complete a
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Tell us in a sentence what is a CorEU?
14 A. A CorEU is this electronic instrument of the European Union where
15 it is in the form of the intranet, all the EU member states are connected
16 and everybody can feed in information which the respective government
17 deems necessary, appropriate, or interesting for other -- for the fellow
18 governments in the European Union. That's a CorEU which is called,
19 basically, is an acronym for Correspondence European. And usually after
20 such meetings we informed our partners - at the time there were 15 members
21 of the European Union - but for time reasons that was not possible. So we
22 informed, therefore, at the very same day the Heads of Mission, EU HoMs,
23 meaning European Union Heads of Mission, we informed them and that same
24 evening about my meeting with Prime Minister Sainovic.
25 Q. Okay. Now, in the first paragraph you said that: "Mr. Sainovic
1 is considered a close associate of Yugoslav President Milosevic and is
2 thought to be responsible for coordinating the security forces in Kosovo
3 since the summer."
4 Can you elaborate on that. On what basis did you conclude or did
5 you think that he was responsible for coordinating the security forces?
6 A. Well, that was basically our understanding and the knowledge that
7 existed in the -- in the diplomatic community that Mr. Sainovic is in
8 charge of coordinating the security forces in Kosovo since the summer of
10 Q. This knowledge or understanding of the international community
11 would be based on what in these particular circumstances?
12 A. I do not recall now exactly whether this was officially
13 communicated via the media or other means, but it was, as I said, the
14 understanding that Mr. Sainovic is in charge of Kosovo.
15 Q. In your various meetings with Mr. Sainovic, did anything occur
16 which caused you to come to a contrary understanding?
17 A. Not to my knowledge. I always had a feeling that Mr. Sainovic was
18 well-informed about the issues and we always had a very pleasant and
19 factual conversation, in spite of, of course, of the tenseness of the
20 situation and the ongoing conflict.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 MR. STAMP: If we could look quickly at Exhibit 2654.
23 Q. This is your -- this is a later -- or it is a dispatch later the
24 same day, the 7th of October, 1998.
25 A. There is a factual mistake in there. It says on -- in the first
1 line: "On the 7th of September, the undersigned was received by
2 Ambassador --" this is 7th of October, as becomes clear from the date of
3 the dispatch. That needs to be corrected, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Is this P654?
5 MR. STAMP: P2654.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: P2654. Thank you.
7 MR. STAMP:
8 Q. This dispatch primarily deals with the activities of US Special
9 Envoy Holbrooke. In the third paragraph it is indicated there that: "At
10 the centre of the discussion was naturally the Security Council Resolution
11 1199," which you just referred to, and that's P456. And
12 you said: "Milosevic's opinion was that all provisions of the United
13 Nations resolution had been fulfilled."
14 A. Yes, that was conveyed to me. The whole dispatch is based on my
15 conversation with Ambassador Holbrooke on this very day of the 7th of
16 October, in Belgrade.
17 Q. And if we read the next two sentences or the next two paragraphs
18 we see also indicated to you that: "The USA was going to take a strict
19 and expansive interpretation of the resolution," and what his instructions
20 were. Could you elaborate on those two paragraphs.
21 A. Yes. Now, clearly, in reference to Security Council Resolution
22 1199, which spells out the situation, but also implies that it's acting
23 under chapter 7 of the charter of the United Nations, and that is of
24 course a very - how should I say? - a very tough level already of -- of UN
25 language that -- backed up with -- by this resolution. Mr. Holbrooke then
1 had a conversation with President Milosevic and obviously -- and this
2 is - again, I am conveying in this report what he told me - a very clear
3 message and warning to President Milosevic that in case there is no
4 success in these meetings now and -- and of course, that led up to the
5 so-called Holbrooke-Milosevic Agreement of the 13th of October, which then
6 introduced the so-called Kosovo Verification Mission and OSCE mission,
7 that he would resort to the NATO ACTORD. And again in NATO language this
8 means the activation order, that the Secretary-General of NATO can without
9 any further ado [Realtime transcript read in error "through"] move -- give
10 the order to NATO to start the envisioned intervention. So that was, of
11 course, already a very -- at the time, I must say, this was the most
12 serious situation so far in -- at the beginning of October and at the time
13 several of the embassies, including the American Embassy, were evacuating
14 their staff. So that was a very, very serious situation. It was very
15 close to a -- to a military intervention already at that time. This is
16 early October of 1998.
17 Q. You indicated that this letter to the introduction of the Kosovo
18 Verification Mission. Just referring to the transcript here I see here at
19 line 13: "And again in NATO language this means activation order."
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. "That the Secretary-General can without any further though" -- I
22 think you said any further --
23 A. Ado, which means basically he does not have to go back -- this is
24 a technical issue, of course -- he does not go back -- does not have to
25 consult with the political level of NATO, which are the NATO ambassadors
1 or the ministers of defence; he already has the pouvoir to order
2 immediately, if he chooses to do so, the -- whatever action, military
3 action, had been decided on prior to this. So activation order is the
4 highest alert, so to speak, in NATO.
5 MR. STAMP: I'm wondering if this is a convenient moment? I think
6 I have completed the examination-in-chief, but it's probably prudent to
7 just have a look over because there are so many documents. I should
8 advise the Court that there are some documents on the list which I have
9 not touched upon because we have another witness, Mr. Jan Kickert, who was
10 also in the former Yugoslavia at the time who could use those documents.
11 So I'm wondering if perhaps we could take a break now --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: You always have the opportunity of inviting us,
13 preferably I think in writing at this stage, to admit documents where you
14 can demonstrate that they are -- well, they have the necessary indicia of
16 MR. STAMP: Very well, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, Mr. Petritsch, we have reached one of our
18 mandatory break periods and it would -- we'll be back at 10 to 11.00. If
19 you could now go with the usher, he'll show you where to wait for the
21 THE WITNESS: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]
23 [The witness stands down]
24 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
25 --- On resuming at 10.56 a.m.
1 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Before the witness is brought in there's one
2 matter I would like to raise with you, and that's the allotment of time.
3 We're very hopeful that we can meet -- or complete our cross in the
4 normally allotted time, which would be the equal amount of time the
5 Prosecution took. My cross-examination will be extensive, Your Honour,
6 and I will perhaps make a renewed application for an extension if I find
7 that I'm not progressing at the speed I would like to, but I fully hope
8 that we can do it.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. My calculation of what you're entitled to in
10 this situation, without any extension, would be just over three and a half
11 hours, to take account of the fact that there's a statement as well. But
12 obviously, a target today, would be to finish today, but I appreciate that
13 depends on circumstances.
14 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Thank you.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: We can now hear from the witness.
16 [The witness takes the stand]
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Have you completed, Mr. Stamp?
18 MR. STAMP: Thank you very much, Mr. President, Your Honours, that
19 is the examination-in-chief.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan.
21 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour, we'll proceed according to the order
22 of the indictment. Thank you.
23 Cross-examination by Mr. O'Sullivan:
24 Q. Good morning, Ambassador.
25 A. Good morning, sir.
1 Q. Now, you've told us that throughout 1998 you were the Ambassador
2 to the FRY and you became the EU Special Envoy for Kosovo. And I'm -- am
3 I correct to say that during that time you were following political and
4 diplomatic events at the level of the FRY and Serbia in relation to
6 A. Correct.
7 Q. And do you speak, read, and understand Serbo-Croatian?
8 A. Yes, more or less, yeah.
9 Q. So would it be fair to say that in addition to the information you
10 received through the regular channels as a diplomat, you were able to
11 follow events in the newspaper and on television if you so chose?
12 A. That's about correct, yes.
13 Q. And when you were appointed Special Envoy in October 1998, Austria
14 held the Presidency of the EU, and on the 1st of January it became
15 Germany, I believe?
16 A. Correctly.
17 Q. Now, when you testified in the Milosevic case, that's Exhibit
18 2793, P2793, excuse me, at page 7219, you said this, and I'll just read it
19 to you, it will be the basis for some further questions.
20 You said: "Well, a second point which I consider very important
21 is the delegation that was sent to Rambouillet. It was basically the
22 delegation that had already in the past many months negotiated with Chris
23 Hill, in particular, and then subsequently also when I joined Chris Hill
24 as the European Special Envoy in the so-called phase of shuttle diplomacy
25 between Pristina and Belgrade when we were delivering proposals for an
1 agreement back and forth that these people whom we dealt with in this
2 period of the shuttle diplomacy in the fall -- summer and fall and winter
3 of 1998, these same people well-versed, excellent experts on the Yugoslav
4 side, came to Rambouillet. This again was on the one hand for me a
5 positive sign inasmuch as we knew that they knew up-to-the minutest detail
6 all the problems and issues, also of course, the unresolved issues in this
7 complex issue, so that was very good."
8 Now I'd like to ask you some questions now about 1998 and the
9 period of shuttle diplomacy.
10 MR. O'SULLIVAN: And with the assistance of the usher I would like
11 to distribute hard copies to the Bench, to the Prosecutor, and to
12 Ambassador Petritsch. These documents are all in e-court, Your Honour,
13 but we provided hard copy for those concerned who need to follow and
14 hopefully will assist.
15 Q. At tab number 1 in hard copy, Mr. Ambassador, that's Exhibit 1D78,
16 is the statement issued by the Government of Serbia on the 11th of March,
17 1998. Do you have that document?
18 A. Yes, I do.
19 Q. You see in the first paragraph that the Government of the Republic
20 of Serbia had, in accordance with a meeting held on the 10th of March,
21 1998, assigned its representatives for talks with the leaders of the
22 Albanian parties and associations, as well as the representatives from the
23 public and cultural life of Kosovo and Metohija and with all those that
24 consider themselves the representatives of Albanian national minority with
25 a view to improving the political process and resolving concrete vital
1 issues of the citizens of Kosovo and Metohija."
2 And in the second photograph four individuals are named to take
3 part: Professor Dr. Markovic, Mr. Vico, Mr. Milosavljevic, and
4 Mr. Sedlak. This is the same Professor Markovic, is it not, that would be
5 Prime Minister of Serbia, who was the head of the delegation at
6 Rambouillet; correct?
7 A. Correct.
8 Q. And if you look at the fourth paragraph in that document the
9 Government of Serbia calls on all parliamentary parties in the National
10 Assembly of the Republic of Serbia to assign one representative from party
11 groups to take part in these talks ..."
12 Correct. Do you see that?
13 A. Yes, I can see it.
14 Q. And the purpose of the talks is set out in paragraph 3, that would
15 be dialogue, political means, economic and cultural development, there's
16 the hope of resolving all the issues in Kosovo and Metohija. Now, you
17 recall, don't you, that this initiative was put in place at this time on
18 the 11th of March, 1998?
19 A. I don't recall distinctly, but I recognise that this is something
20 that the Government of Serbia did.
21 Q. And you also see in this same document, penultimate paragraph,
22 there is an invitation for the Albanian representatives to meet in
23 Pristina on the 12th of March, 1998. Do you see that?
24 A. Yes, I can see it.
25 Q. Did you know that the delegation went to Pristina, but the
1 Albanian representatives failed to appear? Did you know that?
2 A. Yes.
3 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour, the next document that I will use --
4 THE WITNESS: Can I --
5 MR. O'SULLIVAN: -- is one I've used before. It's the book by
6 Professor Mark Weller, which is Exhibit it's 1D18. It's in e-court.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: I think Ambassador Petritsch wanted to add
8 something to that last answer.
9 THE WITNESS: If I may, Your Honour. As you see on the top, this
10 was issued on the 11th March 1998. An invitation of such importance was
11 issued one day prior to the actual meeting in Pristina, and that was the
12 reason why it was refuted by the Kosovo Albanian side. They considered in
13 a provocation, that they did not receive an invitation well in advance.
14 This is just a comment that I wanted to give. The reason why on many
15 occasions there were statements like this one issued with a very positive,
16 very constructive language; unfortunately, there was always something to
17 it, why it, in the end, made it easy, unfortunately, to the other side
18 to -- not to show up. And that is the reason, and they could with some
19 reason say: I'm sorry, we just received the invitation. We don't have a
20 team together. We cannot come. I mean, what kind of invitation is this.
21 That's just a comment on the side. Thank you.
22 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
23 Q. How did you know that? How did you know that this was the
24 position on the 11th or 12th of March of the Albanians?
25 A. Because we were trying to a cajole and --
1 Q. No, sir. How did you know on this date that this was their
3 A. I did not know this. This was not -- this was just one of many
4 meetings that took place or that were publicised, and that was usually the
5 reaction. Although we tried to motivate and tried to get the Albanians to
6 accept and say, Forget this. This is on short notice. Please go there.
7 Please get engaged in the talks.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour, I was saying the next exhibit, and
10 it's a point of clarification for the Chamber, and the registry in
11 particular is the book I'm holding which is the book of materials put
12 together by Professor Mark Weller, it's Exhibit 1D18, and in the past by
13 using he e-court reference we've identified the documents we wish to
14 tender and not the whole book.
15 Q. Now, Ambassador, you know Professor Marc Weller from University of
16 Cambridge, don't you?
17 A. Yes. Well, I guess. He's new.
18 Q. And he was an expert consultant to the Kosovo Albanian delegation
19 at Rambouillet?
20 A. To my knowledge, yes.
21 Q. You know he was, don't you?
22 A. Mm-hmm.
23 Q. You know he was an expert consultant at Rambouillet?
24 A. To my knowledge he was something like this. Yes, I met him there,
1 Q. At tab 2 in hard copy, and that's exhibit 1D, e-court page 348,
2 you have there an invitation sent by the Government of Serbia on the 14th
3 of March, 1998. And in the second paragraph you see the list of
4 individuals -- the representatives of the Albanian community and
5 communities of Kosovo and Metohija to whom it's addressed. There are
6 about 11 names there. We recognise people like Dr. Rugova, Adem Demaqi.
7 And that's followed by the invitation itself, where the Albanians are
8 invited to attend on the 16th of March, 1998. Did you become aware of
9 this initiative?
10 A. I do not -- I do not distinctly recall this one, but I am aware of
11 several such invitations that the Serbian government issued, again on
12 rather short notice; as in this case, two days.
13 Q. Okay. You were -- I believe in your evidence you've told us about
14 Security Council Resolution 1160, which is the 31st of March, 1998. You
15 are familiar with that resolution, I believe. Is that correct?
16 A. Well, not in -- I have not read it lately, but if you point to the
17 paragraph that you would like to discuss with me or --
18 Q. But you were aware of it at the time, weren't you?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. That's at tab 3 in hard copy; it's Exhibit P455. And let's look
21 at the first page. It's the fourth paragraph, which says: "Noting the
22 declaration on the 18th of March, 1998, by the President of the Republic
23 of Serbia on the political process in Kosovo and Metohija."
24 The second item I'd like to draw your attention is on the
25 following page, paragraph 3. The Security Council: "Underlines that the
1 way to defeat violence and terrorism in Kosovo is for the authorities in
2 Belgrade to offer the Kosovar Albanian community a genuine political
4 Paragraph 4, the Security Council: "Calls upon the authorities in
5 Belgrade and the leadership of the Kosovar Albanian community urgently to
6 enter without preconditions into a meaningful dialogue on political status
8 Just two more short segments for you, Ambassador. In paragraph 5,
9 the last four lines. The Security Council says: "Such a solution must
10 also take into account the rights of the Kosovar Albanians and all who
11 live in Kosovo, and expresses its support for an enhanced status for
12 Kosovo which would include a substantially greater degree of autonomy and
13 meaningful self-administration."
14 And finally, paragraph 6 refers to the education agreement.
15 You were familiar with the items I've identified here, the
16 position of the Security Council, its invitations and its calling upon the
17 parties to negotiate. And I believe you're also aware of the education
18 agreement; correct?
19 A. Yes, that's correct.
20 Q. If you look at tab 4 in hard copy, that's Exhibit 1D79. What
21 you're looking at is the declaration of the President of the Republic of
22 Serbia, Mr. Milan Milutinovic, on the political process in Kosovo and
23 Metohija. It's the statement that's referred to in the Security Council
24 resolution we just looked at. This is what Mr. Milutinovic says. He
25 says: "Procrastination and delay to the start in a direct political
1 dialogue is ... unjustified and damaging."
2 Do you see that in the first paragraph?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Then he makes an appeal to the leaders of the Albanian minority.
5 And then he -- in the second paragraph. And he says: "In my capacity as
6 president of the republic, I am prepared to be the guarantor of such
7 discussions based on the principle of preserving territorial integrity and
8 of including in the agenda the issue of self-government for Kosovo and
9 Metohija within Serbia."
10 The third paragraph sets out the way to do this, which is by
11 political means, peaceful methods, and dialogue; correct?
12 A. Correct.
13 Q. And if we turn over a page, the second paragraph -- the first full
14 paragraph, second sentence, we see Mr. Milutinovic says: "That's why I
15 call on the 3 plus 3 group to proceed immediately to the implementation of
16 the agreement on the normalisation of education."
17 And the penultimate paragraph is: "I point out my conviction that
18 the future of the citizens in Kosovo and Metohija as well as those in
19 Serbia and in all our country does not lie in ethnic, religious, or
20 cultural closing-up and divisions but in peace, equality, integration, and
21 life together."
22 You were aware of this declaration at the time, March 18th, 1998,
23 weren't you?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. If you turn to tab 5 in hard copy which is 1D18, the Weller book.
1 The e-court page is 90 and 91.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan, by take it we are going to come to
3 a question where the witness's knowledge of these various things is
4 relevant to the case, because if we're not then these are matters on which
5 you can address us in due course. But if it's necessary to build up to a
6 question I quite understand, but I don't think this is the appropriate
7 way, simply to introduce these various features of events at the time.
8 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Well, this is a witness who was a participant,
9 who was there, who can confirm authenticity. He was an active diplomat,
10 he was Special Envoy, he's part of the shuttle diplomacy initiative which
11 takes part in the latter part of 1998, which I'm going to come to. These
12 are all matters the Prosecution has made allegations in relation to this
13 in relation to my client.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't dispute that but there are also all matters
15 on the face of it that you could agree -- have agreed with them and we
16 could be reading to ourselves in time that isn't using up valuable court
18 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Well, Your Honour, the position is -- there's no
19 point in re-calling Professor -- excuse me, Ambassador Petritsch; he's
20 here. If you think this is time that could be used in the Defence, it
21 could be allocated that way.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: No, no, I'm making the point that if you're going
23 to ask him a meaningful question, I understand this; but if you're not
24 going to ask him a meaningful question that relates to his personal
25 knowledge of circumstances, then we can read these -- they can be
1 introduced in your own case in due course without the witness coming back.
2 The only purpose of him is to explain things that cannot be conveyed by
3 simply reading the documentation. And so far all you've been doing is
4 reading the documentation.
5 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Thank you.
6 [Trial Chamber confers]
7 JUDGE BONOMY: And I ought to make it absolutely clear to you,
8 Mr. O'Sullivan, that we particularly recognise your restraint in the
9 conduct of cross-examination throughout the trial, and therefore we
10 recognise this as an exceptional situation. But nevertheless, we invite
11 you to ensure that we concentrate on things that the Ambassador's time
12 here merits.
13 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Thank you.
14 Q. The next document I want you to look at, sir, was the -- is at tab
15 5 which is 1D18 at e-court pages 90 and 91. Now, you are aware that in
16 March of 1998 the education agreement that was revisited under the
17 auspices of the St. Edigio community, Monsignor Palija, and steps were
18 taken to revitalise that process which culminated in an agreement to
19 re-open the institute of Albanology faculties at the university, the
20 elementary schools, and the high schools in Kosovo. You were aware of
21 that, weren't you?
22 A. Yes, but it of course was not the re-opening of all the schools.
23 It was a certain attempt to go into this direction but was never fully
25 Q. Right. But this was the -- this was a -- an agreement that had
1 not been acted on since 1996, and in 1998 part of the government's
2 positions that we've been looking at here was indeed to start moving in
3 that direction with the assistance of the -- St. Edigio. Is that
5 A. That's correct.
6 Q. And indeed this would be -- this kind of initiative would have
7 been consistent with what the UN Resolution 1660 said, to enter into
8 genuine political process, meaningful dialogue; correct?
9 A. Absolutely, and we were pushing very hard for it to go -- to get
10 into a meaningful dialogue between the two directly.
11 Q. Now, the next item is Exhibit 1D82, which is at tab 6, which is a
12 statement by the Government of the Republic of Serbia on Kosovo and
13 Metohija from the 31st of March. And I think again what I want to ask you
14 is whether you're aware that the first delegation that we saw a few
15 moments ago with Professor Markovic where there were four people, we see
16 here on the second page that it's expanded. And the reason it's expanded
17 we can see from the bottom of the first page, the last paragraph. I'll
18 read it: "The Government of Serbia noted that the requests of the Muslim,
19 Roma, Turkish, and other minorities and ethnic communities living in
20 Kosovo ... were requested to take part" in this delegation led by
21 Dr. Markovic. Do you recall that?
22 A. I do not distinctly recall that but this might as well be the
24 Q. All right. And as another matter that you may be aware of which
25 is on the second page, in the fourth paragraph on the second page, the
1 final sentence, it says that: "A special representative of the President
2 of the FRY, Vice-Prime Minister Professor Vladan Kutlesic" has been added
3 to this delegation. Now, you know that Professor Kutlesic was added as a
4 Special Envoy to President Milosevic?
5 A. Yes, correct.
6 Q. And Dr. Kutlesic you know him as an eminent constitutional
8 A. I have met him in his political capacity.
9 Q. But you weren't aware that he was a constitutional expert?
10 A. Yes, I was aware of it, yes. That's reason why he was included in
11 the Rambouillet delegation as an expert.
12 Q. He was a member of the Rambouillet delegation, wasn't he?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And of course Professor Markovic is an eminent scholar of the
15 constitution as well, isn't he?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And the next paragraph on that same page there's an invitation
18 sent for a meeting on the 7th of April, 1998, in Pristina. Do you see
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. So they're getting better, they're giving a week's notice now?
22 A. Yeah.
23 Q. And this is sent out to, in the last paragraph, 11 people, it's
24 the same people we've been seeing before, the different leaders from the
25 different communities, Mr. Rugova, Demaqi, and others; correct?
1 A. Yeah.
2 Q. And do you know on the 7th of April this delegation travelled to
3 Pristina and Mr. Milutinovic accompanied them? We've seen that he's
4 acted -- he's put himself out as the guarantor for the process. Did you
5 know that they travelled to Pristina on the 7th, along with
6 Mr. Milutinovic?
7 A. I did not now recall this, but I assume that this is correct.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: I see that Thaqi's name is not on this list of
9 invitees. When did he begin to feature in the dialogue?
10 THE WITNESS: He was never accepted by the Yugoslav side until
11 Rambouillet because he was -- I guess he got a ten-year sentence for
12 whatever activities, terrorist activities or something. So -- and he was
13 living somewhere, I don't know, in Albania or in the mountains or so. So
14 he was not clearly -- there is no -- no one from -- understandably so, no
15 one included from the KLA.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
17 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
18 Q. Well, would -- what's your understanding of Adem Demaqi? Wasn't
19 he KLA?
20 A. He was much later than -- became the official spokesperson of KLA,
21 but Adem Demaqi is a particular case. He spent, I guess, up to 27 years
22 in prison in Yugoslavia. So he was a figure of, you know, sui generis, so
23 to speak.
24 Q. Now, the -- tab 7, which is Exhibit 1D83, is the statement made by
25 Mr. Milutinovic on the 7th of April, 1998, in Pristina. Are you aware
1 that once again the representatives, despite their one-week notice, the
2 representatives of the Albanian communities failed to attend when this
3 delegation went to meet with them?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And that's what Mr. Milutinovic is saying in the first two
6 paragraphs. He's saying that -- referring back to his own declaration of
7 the 18th of March, the one that we've seen in the UN Security Council
9 A. Mm-hmm --
10 Q. That he invited --
11 MR. STAMP: May I just -- I'm sorry, we are now proposing to go
12 into the document without first getting from the witness whether he's
13 familiar with the document, whether he knows the document. I think before
14 we begin to discuss the contents of the document, the witness should be at
15 least afforded an opportunity to say whether or not he's familiar with it.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan.
17 MR. O'SULLIVAN: I'll proceed that way.
18 Q. You're aware that the statements made by Mr. Milutinovic during
19 this period were repeated invitations, and you know this through the
20 media, is what I'm saying, if you don't know this -- although this is a
21 public statement. You know that he was making repeated efforts to
22 encourage the Kosovo Albanian representatives to meet with the Markovic
23 delegation; correct?
24 A. That's correct.
25 Q. And he was critical of them not appearing when invited; correct?
1 A. Absolutely.
2 Q. And he kept emphasising that this issue was important to Serbia,
3 that to keep -- to find a problem -- a resolution to the problem in Serbia
4 in 1998 was a key objective of his and of the Government of the Republic
5 of Serbia?
6 A. Mm-hmm. We were also trying at the time when we saw this
7 exercise in futility to impress upon the Serb side that they need to find
8 another way to initiate this dialogue because we realised that by issuing
9 invitations on short notice, doing this kind of window dressing,
10 travelling to Pristina, and so on, was not really serving the purpose of
11 getting the Kosovar Albanian leadership to accept the invitation after
12 nine years where they were basically not addressed. That was our
13 message - by "our" I mean the European Union and clearly also the
14 Americans - to say: Listen, find a more appropriate way, a way which
15 would be more successful in getting the Kosovar Albanians on the table
16 that you are proposing. So, of course, we were very much in support of
17 this outreach on the part of the Serbian government, but we considered the
18 way it was done not very successful, as it proved.
19 Q. Well, let's look at that. We've seen that the UN Security Council
20 has called on both sides to engage in meaningful dialogue, and we've seen
21 so far some initiatives by the Government of Serbia, by Mr. Milutinovic
22 himself as a guarantor of the process, and to your knowledge - we're now
23 in March/April - what had the Albanians done to fulfil the request of the
24 UN Security Council, to engage in serious dialogue?
25 A. I think, Your Honour, with your permission one needs to be a bit
1 broader when one considers March/April 1998. It's the end of
2 February/beginning of March of the same year, there was a so-called
3 massacre of the Jashari family. Mr. Jashari was considered one of the
4 founders of the KLA and Serb security forces raided their homes and
5 killed -- I don't know, I don't have the exact number - of the family. So
6 against this backdrop one needs to see the repeated invitations as well.
7 The -- with this massacre, the whole conflict between Serbs and Albanians
8 had taken on a whole new dimension.
9 Q. So the answer to my question is as far as you know, no one from
10 the political community within Kosovo and Metohija had taken any steps by
11 that point. Is that correct?
12 A. Not in terms of sitting down and talking, yes.
13 Q. And you said you were making suggestions to do it differently than
14 what the Serbian side was doing. And what were those suggestions again?
15 A. Well, first of all, we said that the Serbian government needs to
16 deal with this - I'm using this now very carefully - massacre, as it was
17 called in common parlance, with the murder there, obviously. Unless this
18 is being dealt with, I -- we do not see a way for the Kosovo political
19 leadership to go and sit down and talk. That was, in our opinion, a
20 precondition to clarify, to clear up the matters, to bring those who have
21 committed this crime to court, and not let impunity go on and then in a
22 parallel track issue lofty declarations. That is not a way to work. This
23 was a message that we got -- conveyed to the Serbian side.
24 Q. But you're aware that in this period in the spring of 1998 there
25 were 12 to 15 different attempts by this delegation to invite and
1 encourage dialogue. Now, there can't be a reason after 15 invitations for
2 the other side not to attend. I mean, in every conflict in the world
3 while the conflict is proceeding there are meetings and attempts at
4 finding peaceful political resolutions aren't there?
5 A. Absolutely but at the same time this conflict was ongoing and
6 there was a whole family razed because of their alleged participation in
7 terrorist activities, which we of course all condemned at the time. We
8 were as much against any use of force on both sides, but there was the
9 fact that a whole family, the Jashari family, had been attacked and there
10 were several people killed. So there was, of course, an issue that had to
11 be dealt with before you move on to the table.
12 Q. All right. The next exhibit is at tab 10, it's 1D18 from the
13 Weller book, e-court page 289. You've mentioned it before, it's the
14 Milosevic-Yeltsin joint statement of the 16th of June 1998, when President
15 Milosevic travelled to Moscow and the two presidents issued a statement.
16 You've told us that that led to KDOM being set up. And in the meantime
17 you know that President Milosevic had indeed met with Mr. -- the late Dr.
18 Rugova in the middle of May in Belgrade, correct, about the 15th of May,
19 does that sound about right?
20 A. That's about right, yes.
21 Q. And in fact on the 22nd of May, one week later, there was a
22 meeting held in Pristina between Professor Markovic's delegation and a
23 group of Albanian leaders; correct?
24 A. I do not distinctly recall this meeting, but you are probably
25 correct if you have this in writing.
1 Q. And -- so by that time the Albanians did have a group that was in
2 place and could have met and did meet at one time with the representatives
3 of the -- Professor Markovic's delegation; correct?
4 A. At this time the US in particular was pushing very hard the Kosovo
5 Albanians to put together a negotiating team; yes, that's correct.
6 Q. Now, are you aware that that's the first and last time the
7 Albanians came to a meeting with Professor Markovic's delegation?
8 A. This as well might be the case, yes.
9 Q. And you know that the declaration between Mr. Milosevic and --
10 President Milosevic and President Yeltsin called for finding a political
11 solution based on equality of all citizens and all nations within Kosovo
12 and Metohija?
13 A. Absolutely, that was a historic declaration in many ways and it
14 also shows the constructive role that Russia from time to time has played
15 in this conflict. It was important inasmuch as for the first time ever
16 the international involvement in the Kosovo conflict was officially
17 admitted. And that is, of course, in -- that is in stark contrast to a
18 referendum which the very same Milosevic held in Serbia, asking the
19 people - that must have been in April - asking the citizens of Serbia:
20 Are you for or against international involvement in the Kosovo case? And
21 Mr. Milosevic received a negative vote of close to 97 per cent against
22 international involvement in April of 1998. And in mid-June of the very
23 same year, this international involvement was granted. This is also a
24 footnote to the issue of referenda in the Balkans.
25 Q. So we can see that there is a change of policy within two months,
1 so --
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. -- it was a very serious, a very serious, fast-moving change in
5 A. Absolutely. It was very welcome by the international community
6 and was -- and was a very encouraging step on the part of the Milosevic
8 Q. And I think you would agree with me, Ambassador, that in general
9 sovereign states are reluctant to internationalise their conflicts, but in
10 this case the FRY did that and in fact invited and allowed KDOM in to
11 monitor; correct?
12 A. Absolutely. This was a very positive step on the part of the
13 Yugoslav government. I fully appreciated this at the time. We took it
14 very seriously and put up our KDOM within a couple of weeks and
15 established a network of observers throughout Kosovo, again coming back,
16 what I said in the morning, and that provided the very objective, factual
17 basis for the way forward about the conflict in Kosovo. So that was a
18 very - I would like to reiterate this - that was a very positive step on
19 the Serbian side.
20 Q. And part of the things that were -- resulted from this
21 Yeltsin-Milosevic undertaking, agreement, was, in fact, freedom of
22 movement for accredited diplomats to Kosovo, access to humanitarian
23 organisations; correct?
24 A. Absolutely correct.
25 Q. Return of refugees and displaced persons?
1 A. That was on the agenda; however, it did not really work.
2 Q. State assistance to re-build homes?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Undertaking to negotiate further with the OSCE on monitoring?
5 A. Mm-hmm.
6 Q. And it also says -- you also know that -- we can look at the
7 document. It says: "To the extent that terrorist activities are halted,
8 to reduce the presence of security forces outside the area in which they
9 are permanently deployed."
10 Because at the time in Kosovo there was a problem with terrorism;
12 A. Whatever you call it, but there was armed resistance on the part
13 of the Kosovar Albanians/terrorism.
14 Q. Well, the UN Security Council in its resolution refers to
16 A. Yes, in the one that you referred to, that's correct.
17 Q. Would you consider the KLA terrorists?
18 A. That was not a question for me to answer. At the time for me it
19 was important to get them a way to -- to wean them away from armed
20 resistance and bring them to the negotiating table. This is what the task
21 of a diplomat is.
22 Q. I fully appreciate that. That wasn't [sic] what you said at the
23 time, but we're eight or nine years later. Today would you consider,
24 looking back, was the KLA a terrorist organisation?
25 A. Again, as I said, for me, that was not the point. At some point
1 in time the United States considered it to be or to declare a terrorist
2 organisation, but then they backtracked because there are, of course, then
3 legal consequences for -- in -- in the legal system of the United States.
4 But the European Union never took this step; however, it was something
5 that, of course, was on all our minds, that what has happened -- what was
6 happening, was very close to what one could generally consider terrorist
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan, line 14 there, I think the
9 answer -- or the question was: That was what you said at the time rather
10 than that wasn't.
11 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Yes, Your Honour. That's correct.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Is that correct?
13 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Thank you. Yes.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: And this book by Weller, has any effort been made
15 to agree with the Prosecution the authenticity of the various contents?
16 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Not as yet, no.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Should that prove in any way difficult?
18 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Well, we can always try.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. And did you deliberately skip tab 9 or
20 did I miss something?
21 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Yes, Your Honour, I just asked the question. I
22 didn't --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: It gives examples of the continuing failure to
24 arrive at meetings.
25 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Yes.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
2 MR. O'SULLIVAN: We were talking about the 12th, the 10th, and I
3 put to the Ambassador there were 12 to 15, as we've heard from other
5 Q. Just off the issue of some of the state assistance that we've
6 talked about, by June, June of 1998, let's make sure we've got the right
7 time-frame, you know that there had been humanitarian centres open by the
8 Serbian authorities in places like Decani; correct?
9 A. Yes, I know about it and we very much encouraged this; however,
10 there were some problems. Those whom I visited, they were actually either
11 not there or not really frequented by Kosovar Albanians, due to the
12 mistrust between the two groups.
13 Q. But you would agree that opening such humanitarian centres would
14 be a vehicle to build that trust, an attempt to build that trust?
15 A. Yes. In principle, yes. I believe it should have been done
16 differently, it should have been done with the help of a neutral
17 intermediary like UNHCR or something like this in order to encourage
18 Kosovar Albanians to really frequent it.
19 Q. Are you aware of a framework programme adopted by the Government
20 of the Republic of Serbia which did just that, which called on working
21 with humanitarian organisations, in particular the Yugoslav Red Cross.
22 Are you familiar with that in mid-June?
23 A. I'm right now not aware of it, but I'm sure at the time I
24 appreciated this.
25 Q. Would you look at tab 11 in hard copy, that's Exhibit 1D84. This
1 may refresh your memory. I'll just put it to you that this framework
2 programme was set up and that it included working with local
3 authorities -- having the local authorities work with the Yugoslav Red
4 Cross in distributing supplies, foodstuffs, and other such things. Now,
5 this was a programme adopted pursuant to a decision of the Government of
6 Serbia on the 17th of June. Does that refresh your recollection?
7 A. Yes. As I have said, I do not distinctly recall this very
8 document, but I remember that there were such efforts which again, as I
9 said, we fully supported. But again we were suggesting to the Serb
10 authorities to find a way to really -- to get to the Kosovar Albanians,
11 those who are in need of help and that they might need some intermediary
12 in order to achieve this, and that would have been, of course, either
13 Kosovar Albanians themselves or some international NGOs or something like
14 this. This is more common sense what I'm now saying. If there is such a
15 mistrust then you need to find ways and means and avenues to get the
16 intended goodwill transformed into action.
17 Q. And what we're seeing here are precisely examples of that?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. We've been looking at the period the end of March to approximately
20 the middle or the end of June, 1998. And you know that by the beginning
21 of July 1998 the KLA controlled between, by some estimates, 30 to 40 if
22 not 50 per cent of Kosovo and Metohija; correct?
23 A. This was a claim by the KLA, who were always exaggerating and
24 trying to impress their own people. They could not impress us. It was
25 far less. They were controlling those parts that were given up by the
1 Yugoslav Army, the Yugoslav Army, the Serb security forces of course were
2 far, far more professional than the KLA, who was basically a bunch of kids
3 who wanted to play army.
4 Q. Well, I think you may be confusing the withdrawal of the security
5 forces after the Milosevic-Holbrooke agreement and OSCE --
6 A. That was the case -- I'm sorry to interrupt you, but I wanted to
7 say all the claims on the part of the KLA were -- had to be taken with a
8 grain of salt. It was more propaganda than reality, although I must say
9 that indeed they did control particularly the villages and those parts
10 that are not -- that were not, whatever, the capital, Pristina, and the --
11 and the bigger towns in Kosovo.
12 Q. Well, let me remind you what you wrote in your -- one of your
13 dispatches. It's Exhibit P2665; it's not in hard copy. You sent it to
14 the foreign ministry in Vienna on the 1st of July, 1998. And you wrote
15 this: "Serb claims that they control all the cities and a large number of
16 connecting roads in Kosovo, despite the area controlled by the UCK
17 estimated at approximately 30 to 40 per cent, Demaqi 50 per cent, is true
18 in relation to cities but completely false in relation to the roads."
19 A. There you have it.
20 Q. All right. That's exactly what I put to you a moment ago that --
21 A. No, but it's -- that's what I said. We were quoting and we were
22 saying, and at the same time we were saying, "this is wrong."
23 Q. No, I think your document says just the opposite. You say the
24 Serbs do not -- they controlled the cities but they do not control the
25 roads. That's what you said in July to your foreign ministry?
1 A. Yes, what I said before was that the cities are controlled by the
2 Serbs and so -- and the countryside, part of it, Drenica in particular,
3 by the KLA and the roads -- there were roadblocks, so it was not all
4 through. That's just the way it was. Of course, it did -- also changed.
5 Then it went up and down. Whenever the Yugoslav Army or the security
6 forces took the initiative, of course they destroyed the KLA quite easily
7 or the, in the fashion of, you know, being rebels, of course, simply moved
9 Q. In the same exhibit I'll read a sentence. You say: "As a result
10 UCK could interfere with the main connecting roads and supply routes
11 within the heart of Serbian-controlled areas, at least temporarily."
12 A. Exactly. This is a typical example of how non-state actors move.
13 Of course they go in, they attack, and then they withdraw.
14 Q. So they were --
15 A. And that's bad enough. I mean, I'm not trying to play this down;
16 on the contrary. I mean, this was a very difficult situation for an
17 ordinary army to handle.
18 Q. And, in fact, an ordinary army or the security forces were having
19 a difficult time with the KLA, weren't they?
20 A. Absolutely.
21 Q. So it wasn't just a bunch of crazy kids in the KLA?
22 A. Well, I mean, that was maybe too dismissive to say so, and I do
23 not want to be dismissive, of course, of the reality there. But this --
24 these -- I'm referring, of course, to the KLA, those who were armed and
25 had uniforms, the KLA, and then the civilians, the many, many more
1 civilians there that were also suffering or they were actually the ones
2 who suffered through this indiscriminate and out-of-proportion attacks on
3 the part of the Serb security forces.
4 Q. Now, you know -- you knew from your personal experience there that
5 the KLA was ambushing the Serbian MUP; correct?
6 A. Correct.
7 Q. And you knew the KLA was kidnapping Serbs, Montenegrins, other
8 non-Albanians, and even Albanians, both Islamic and Catholic, who the KLA
9 considered the enemy; correct?
10 A. Absolutely. Of course, they also went against their own who were
11 opposed to the KLA.
12 Q. So it was a very effective way to control the population even
13 though it might have been a smaller organisation than Serbian forces?
14 A. Well, it was not very effective, but it was done, yes.
15 Q. And you're aware, aren't you, that there was an initiative by the
16 Serbian side to set up local police, an initiative that failed, but you
17 wrote in Exhibit P99, one of your dispatches on the 7th of September,
18 1998, you wrote this in relation to the proposed establishment of local
19 police force.
20 You wrote: "Naturally this plan is a highly sensitive issue. On
21 the one hand for internal Serbian reasons because of the arming of
22 Albanians and on the other for internal Kosovar reasons because such
23 policemen could be regarded as traitors to the Albanian cause and
24 subjected to UCK persecution; village guards problem Allah Anatolia,
1 That's an accurate reflection of the problem of trying to
2 establish local police; correct?
3 A. That's correct. That was -- they were trying to establish local
4 police and including Kosovar Albanians, but at the time that was our
5 assessment then. It was already beyond this point where you could still
6 get Kosovar Albanians to join it. Some joined; they were considered
7 traitors and, of course, I'm sure the KLA tried on some occasions to
8 assassinate them and so on. So that was -- that was the situation there.
9 Highly confusing, not really controlled by either side.
10 Q. And you knew that the KLA was trained in centres in countries like
11 Albania, Switzerland, Germany, Turkey, and other foreign countries;
13 A. This I don't know.
14 Q. But you knew the KLA had training camps in northern Albania?
15 A. This is what I heard and read about, yes.
16 Q. Well, you were informed through your diplomatic circles about
17 this, weren't you?
18 A. No, that was more - how should I say? - common assumption, not
19 even knowledge, but common assumption that somewhere they would have to
20 learn how to shoot.
21 Q. But surely your American diplomatic colleagues, your attaches in
22 Belgrade, they were telling you these things, weren't they?
23 A. No, they were not very forthcoming when it came to such
24 intelligence information.
25 Q. You knew that the KLA had supply routes coming into Kosovo through
1 Albania, don't you?
2 A. This was, again, your assumption, yes.
3 Q. And you knew that because the regime in Albania had collapsed in
4 the late 1990s --
5 A. 1997, yeah.
6 Q. -- and all these arms and munitions were available?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And that's how the -- that was a life-line of ammunitions and
9 supplies to the KLA?
10 A. That was played into -- into the hands of the -- at the time - how
11 should I say? - armed -- at the start of the armed resistance on the part
12 of -- of the Kosovar Albanians, yes. There is, quite obviously, a direct
13 link between the collapse of Albania and -- in 1997 and then the start of
14 a major armed resistance in Kosovo, and it is assumed that the weapons
15 came from Albania.
16 Q. And you also knew that -- that there were government authorities
17 in Albania that supported the KLA?
18 A. I don't know that, but that was also the assumption that there
19 are -- that there is a fraction in there which is in support of their kin
20 in Kosovo.
21 Q. Let's turn specifically now to the period where you're -- you
22 become the Special Envoy in October 1998, it's the period of shuttle
23 diplomacy. That's where you and Ambassador Hill are working together as
24 the -- in this shuttle diplomacy effort; correct?
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. You're aware of a meeting that took place in Belgrade on the 29th
2 of September, 1998, between Mr. Milutinovic, Ambassador Hill, Larry
3 Rossin, who's the director for south-eastern European, United States State
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Professor Markovic and Professor Kutlesic?
7 A. Just a factual correction, it's -- it says the second time, it's
8 Rossen but it's, Rossen, Larry Rossen.
9 Q. My mistake --
10 A. No, no. It's not -- it was my mistake or my deputy's mistake in
11 filing this report. It's Rosen in the third paragraph.
12 Q. Thank you. That's at tab 12 in hard copy, it's P556. And you see
13 that there is a discussion there about a draft Hill agreement?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. One of the many you've talked about, fairly early in the process,
16 I'd say in September?
17 A. Mm-hmm.
18 Q. And there's the issues -- the three substantive problems, as you
19 write, are the police, the administration of justice in -- Kosovo-wide,
20 and the position of representatives. Now, this shows that by this point
21 the delegation headed by Professor Markovic had taken strides to formulate
22 that position as you and Ambassador Hill had; correct?
23 A. Absolutely. I think it's also -- attests to the fact that there
24 was not an ambush in Rambouillet, that this was a very -- for over many,
25 many months in very detailing -- in minute details these issues were all
1 discussed with the experts in Belgrade.
2 Q. And you may be -- a reflection of that meeting is the next
3 document, which is 1D86 at tab 13 in hard copy, the statement coming from
4 President Milutinovic's office where he says he received Ambassador Hill,
5 names the people who were present. And the previous document, the one
6 that -- your report, the information was conveyed to you by Ambassador
7 Hill, I take it?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And what's in this statement here, I'm looking in particular at
10 paragraph 3 where: "It was mutually established that urgent renewal and
11 intensification of the dialogue between the" delegations should continue.
12 That was consistent with a with what Ambassador Hill was conveying to you,
13 wasn't it?
14 A. Absolutely.
15 MR. STAMP: While I don't at all object to the document itself, it
16 is the manner of use. It is the same objection which I made earlier, it
17 is the manner in which it is used. The witness is asked about the
18 contents of a document without even being afforded the opportunity to say
19 whether he recognises the document.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, he won't recognise it. All that Mr.
21 O'Sullivan is asking him is whether his knowledge of events and
22 understanding of events is consistent with what's in this document, is it
24 MR. STAMP: It is, but the witness is being referred to the
25 contents of the document and --
1 JUDGE BONOMY: What's wrong with that?
2 MR. STAMP: It is my submission --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: He's got to confront him with his case, hasn't he?
4 MR. STAMP: Indeed.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: And in due course he'll no doubt prove the
7 MR. STAMP: But if he seeks to confront him with a document, I
8 would submit that he has to afford the witness an opportunity to comment
9 on whether or not he recognises the document.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I'm afraid I don't see that but I'll consult
11 my colleagues and see if they think that that's a necessity.
12 [Trial Chamber confers]
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp, we don't see the issue here. If the
14 witness was going to tell us that his understanding's inconsistent with
15 the document, then we have his evidence; and if he says it is consistent
16 with the document, then we have his evidence. There's no attempt here to
17 set this up as a stand-alone piece of material at this stage; that can
18 only come later. It's not part of the function of cross-examination to
19 set things up that can't be confirmed by a witness. If, on the other
20 hand, Mr. O'Sullivan does want to do that, then what he will need to do is
21 obviously get confirmation of the understanding of the witness that this
22 is an authentic document.
23 So please continue, Mr. O'Sullivan -- sorry, the witness wants to
24 tell us something.
25 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry, Your Honour. Now having time to read the
1 public statement of the cabinet of the president of the 29th of September,
2 1998, and compare it a little bit with the report that we filed to my
3 foreign ministry, of course -- I mean, it is clear that this is not fully
4 in line. The public statement by the Republic of Serbia clearly reflects
5 the Serbian viewpoint, wherein our report based on the meeting with
6 Ambassador Hill, of course, is much more factual and detailed, pointing
7 out what the problems are on the part of the Serb side. So in this
8 respect, it does not -- it is not something that we can say: Well, this
9 is exactly what's in here. Yeah. But this is obvious when comparing the
10 two documents.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Indeed. That's a matter that the Prosecution can
12 ask you about in re-examination, but Mr. O'Sullivan asked you two matters
13 there, and one was that the statement confirms the meeting; and secondly,
14 refers to an urgent continuation of the dialogue. And then you confirmed
15 that by answering "absolutely."
16 THE WITNESS: Yes.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, we, obviously, can hear submissions about the
18 rest of the contents of this in due course and read it for ourselves or we
19 can also hear answers to questions by the Prosecution when they have a
20 chance to re-examine you. Our procedure in this -- our procedure in this
21 trial so far has been to consider any document admitted and to the extent
22 that it helps our understanding of the answers of the witnesses. And we
23 follow that course here to the extent that you accept the consistency of
24 the statement with your evidence. We assume that this sort of document is
25 one that you wouldn't necessarily be familiar with, unless Mr. O'Sullivan
1 asks you to confirm that that's the case.
2 Mr. O'Sullivan.
3 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
4 Q. Yes, I can ask you.
5 Were you familiar with this [indiscernible]?
6 A. No.
7 Q. And --
8 A. But the gist of it, of course, is fully in line with the
9 then-ongoing discussion.
10 Q. And the information that Ambassador Hill was conveying to you
11 about the nature of the [indiscernible]?
12 A. As I said before, it's -- as I said before, it's of course, the
13 information that Ambassador Hill conveyed to me is much more detailed and
14 much more factual than, obviously, a statement by -- by a government
15 institution usually is, so to speak.
16 Q. Right.
17 A. So there are no -- it's not mutually exclusive, of course.
18 Q. And there's no conflict between the two?
19 A. It's no conflict.
20 Q. The -- in this statement also refers to in the second
21 paragraph: "Conclusions of the National Assembly of Serbia." I'm going
22 to suggest to you that at tab 15, 1D202, we have conclusions of the
23 Republic of Serbia of 28 September, 1998, and I think you may be familiar
24 with these. This -- these conclusions, I think you would agree with me,
25 tie-in with the -- the serious beginnings of the shuttle diplomacy phase,
1 the Hill-Petritsch phase and here the Government of Serbia is issuing its
2 conclusions based on an Assembly meeting. And you know that the
3 Government of Serbia, its position was to make a clear distinction between
4 terrorists and terrorism on the one hand and members of the ethnic
5 Albanian community who lived in Kosovo on the other; correct?
6 A. That's correct. Insofar as in writing it was done, unfortunately
7 the actions on the ground were not reflecting the text.
8 Q. And you know that it condemned all forms of terrorism as not being
9 the vehicle to achieve a political solution?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And you agree with that, don't you?
12 A. Of course, we always agreed against use of force, against
13 terrorism, against any use of force, but clearly, we also wanted this to
14 apply to both sides and to -- not to use indiscriminate force, as it was
15 the case in this conflict and documented in Security Council resolutions.
16 Q. Paragraph 6 makes reference to the Republic of Albania using --
17 allowing the KLA to have bases on its territory for organisation,
18 recruiting, training, arming. Now, this is debated publicly in the
19 Assembly and it was no secret. I mean, that -- there was intelligence
20 information, the government knew about it, and I'm sure you in the
21 diplomatic community knew about it; right?
22 A. Right, correct. We were doing something against it, of course.
23 We were working in Tirana on this issue in order to stop the influx of
24 weaponry and so on.
25 Q. And you know the position of the Government of Serbia, the
1 Assembly -- the Assembly of Serbia on this date was to continue
2 unconditional dialogue, to seek dialogue with the leadership of the groups
3 living in Kosovo and Metohija to find a solution; correct?
4 A. Yes, that's correct.
5 Q. And the government's position was also reflected in paragraph 14,
6 that -- paragraph 14.
7 A. I don't have it in front of me.
8 Q. That's a page reference -- I'm sorry -- page 3 --
9 A. I'm sorry to interrupt, but there's a noise in the --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. You can work without them, I think. There's
11 a problem with one of the microphones, which will not be capable of
12 resolution until we have a break shortly, and I think since you're both
13 speaking at a reasonable pace in the same language we strictly don't need
14 you to be listening for interpretation.
15 THE INTERPRETER: Yes, Your Honour, but interpreters do need to
16 listen to the original.
17 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: The sound is getting very
18 bad. It is very hard to interpret into the other languages.
19 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
20 Q. [Previous translation continues]... One of the realities if you
21 want to call it that of the Balkans is that ethnicity and citizenship or
22 belonging to a group was mixed with religion and there was no distinction
23 that people in other parts of the world might think -- do not define a
24 person as a citizen as a rights-bearing individual, whereas in some parts
25 of the Balkans, that's different, so you're defined according to your
1 religion, and your religion and ethnicity are one and the same. Is
2 that -- would you agree with that?
3 A. Well, in the case of -- in principle, yes, I agree and that was at
4 the core of the Yugoslav tragedy, really, to try to base modern society on
5 ethnicity, particularly when it is such a multi-ethnic society as the
6 Yugoslav one, and that led into the disaster. In the case of Kosovo
7 Albanians, of course, it's more complex, because they have both Muslims
8 and Christians. So it is more mixed. There, the religion does not play a
9 role. In the case of Kosovo it's really the ethnicity, it's really that
10 they are Albanian and not so much that they are Catholics or Muslims.
11 Q. It would be --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan, there is an indication that it's
13 becoming increasingly difficult for the interpreters. So would it be
14 harmful to your case to interrupt you now rather than a bit later?
15 MR. O'SULLIVAN: That's not harmful.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: It would be convenient to take the break now and
17 allow this repair to be done.
18 Could I ask you, Mr. Petritsch, to leave the court again with the
19 usher for a break now rather than at the normal time.
20 [The witness stands down]
21 JUDGE BONOMY: We will resume at 20 minutes to 1.00.
22 --- Recess taken at 12.08 p.m.
23 --- On resuming at 12.41 p.m.
24 [The witness takes the stand]
25 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan.
2 MR. O'SULLIVAN: [Microphone not activated]
3 There's one correction for the transcript, at page 64, line 7, I
4 misspoke. It's not P99, it's P599.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
7 Q. Ambassador, I would like to move to October 1998, we're in the
8 period of shuttle diplomacy. We've heard quite a bit about, in a very
9 general way, the agreements that were drafted by Ambassador Hill and
10 yourself in this period of shuttle diplomacy. At tab 16, just to get a
11 flavour of what was in one of those drafts, you'll see one. This is
12 Exhibit 1D18. The e-court page is 353 to 359. This is one of the drafts
13 re-produced by Professor Weller. Do you have that, Ambassador?
14 A. Mm-hmm.
15 Q. And I don't want to spend any the time looking at any of the
16 details of this, but just to get a flavour of it, if we turn to the first
17 page of hard copy, you'll see there's a heading: "Rights and duties of
18 citizens in Kosovo," a little further down, "Rights of national
19 communities," up at the top on the right-hand side: "Organs of Kosovo."
20 If you turn the page there's a heading: "Part on communes." Continuing
21 through the document: "Resolving conflicts and maintaining public order,
22 financing, implementation period." Next page over: "Amendments, final
23 provisions." Still on that page: "General" -- a draft law enforcement
24 and security annex, they're contemplating a Ministry of the Interior with
25 Albanian representation, ethnic make-up of what the Ministry of the
1 Interior might look like and so on, security commissions, coordination and
2 cooperation of mutual security matters, federal and republic police
3 operations in Kosovo.
4 Now, this is an example of one of the drafts, one from October
5 1998. Is that correct?
6 A. October 1st, 1998 --
7 Q. Yes.
8 A. -- that's correct, yes.
9 Q. And turning to the next tab, tab 17, which is again Exhibit 1D18,
10 e-court 359 to 366, it's the revised version of November 1st, 1998, and in
11 this period of that month of October I assume that there were proposals
12 sent back and forth and you and Ambassador Hill and others worked on this
13 draft and implemented your ideas and the ideas of others, would that be a
14 fair way to put it?
15 A. Yes, that's fair.
16 Q. Again, I don't want to go through this in any detail, but anyone
17 looking at this document at their leisure can see that we see similar
18 headings, and it's a fairly comprehensive agreement, isn't it, despite
19 being in draft form?
20 A. It's what I would call the political part of any agreement, yes,
21 without the implementation part.
22 Q. And these are the drafts that were transmitted both to Professor
23 Markovic's delegation and to the Albanian side --
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. -- is that right?
1 A. That's correct.
2 Q. Now, how would that work; they would comment and send those
3 comments back to you and you would digest and analyse them?
4 A. We would travel to Pristina or to Belgrade or meet different
5 individuals, whoever was assigned by the respective groups to talk to us
6 and then we discussed this, so it was Mr. Milutinovic to a large degree on
7 the Belgrade side, and Mr. Agani on the Pristina side, to a large degree.
8 Q. Would it be fair to characterise this as a positive period where
9 things were accomplished, as reflected in these documents? It's very --
10 A. Well, I mean, it was really pushed by us, by the two mediators.
11 There was resistance on both parts and procrastination and trying to sort
12 of bring this -- you know, prolong the whole process. We always had a
13 feeling we were running behind while the violent escalation on the ground
14 took up speed.
15 Q. Let me direct your attention to the middle of the month of
16 November, and I have some documents, but perhaps you can just recall it
17 before I show you a document. On the 14th of November you received an
18 invitation - and it's in tab 18, 1D88 - you received an invitation from
19 the Serbian side, from President Milutinovic, you and Ambassador Hill and
20 the Ambassador of the Federal -- the Russian Federation and the People's
21 Republic of China to attend a meeting on the 18th of November in Pristina.
22 Do you recall that?
23 A. Yes, yes.
24 Q. And unfortunately, you could not attend that meeting?
25 A. Yes. I was not -- I simply was not physically present in
1 Belgrade, unfortunately, I was not there, and I expressed -- that was also
2 expressed -- the regret was expressed and --
3 Q. In fact, if you turn to tab 19, 1D68, we have your letter of
4 apology --
5 A. Mm-mmm.
6 Q. -- where you say or a person writing on your behalf in the second
7 paragraph person says -- expresses your apology and: "He
8 believes" - you - "that progress has been made considering the fact that
9 he and his colleagues were invited, he is ready to attend the forthcoming
10 meetings, he wishes success for tomorrow's talks."
11 A. Mm-mmm.
12 Q. That's what you said?
13 A. Yes. Progress was made, indeed, by being more inclusive. For the
14 first time now the negotiators or the mediators were accepted by the
15 Serbian side that they should take part in this process, and I considered
16 this a very positive development.
17 Q. One point that I cannot overlook in your response, Ambassador, is
18 the last paragraph where you express your regrets, "By mistake, the
19 invitation was misplaced." So to err is human, isn't it?
20 A. Even the best diplomats sometimes make a mistake.
21 Q. At least the Serbs were timely.
22 So the meeting did take place in Pristina in -- on the 18th of
23 November, the one you couldn't attend, but there was wide coverage in the
24 media of that event, television and newspapers; correct?
25 A. I don't recall this, but I assume that there was wide --
1 Q. Well, when you came back Vienna didn't you -- you certainly
2 consulted the Politika or other sources?
3 A. Of course, I'm pretty sure, but I cannot distinctly recall this,
4 but I assume that there was quite widespread reporting on this.
5 Q. And you recall if you did see Politika -- and, in fact, the
6 English translation of Politika is at tab 21, 1D46, and the reason we give
7 you hard copy is so you can flip between documents. At tab 20, that's
8 1D18, e-court pages 367 to 369, you have a copy of Mr. Milutinovic's
9 statement in Pristina on that day.
10 A. Mm-hmm.
11 Q. Now, we can see it's a rather lengthy statement which includes
12 opening remarks and closing remarks, but again we see from this statement
13 that the pronouncement by Mr. Milutinovic, which is I believe consistently
14 used throughout this period, is that Serbia is firmly committed to having
15 the problems in Kosovo and Metohija resolved politically; correct?
16 A. Mm-hmm, yes.
17 Q. Fortunately [sic], the Albanian side did not choose to attend yet
18 again in Pristina on the 18th; correct? You knew that?
19 A. Since I was not present, I don't know who actually attended, but I
20 assume so.
21 Q. Now, we can see that from the statement itself. My question
22 should have been unfortunately, the Albanian side did not attend.
23 But you knew that despite the fact the Albanians were not
24 attending this state delegation, which was sponsored from time to time by
25 Mr. Milutinovic and encouraged by you continued to hold out hope that the
1 process would proceed and continue to evolve; correct?
2 A. That's correct.
3 Q. And if you turn to the last page of tab 20 you'll see that there
4 is a comment regarding the Hill draft, the Hill paper. It says: "The
5 participants in the debate" -- that's Mr. Milutinovic speaking -- "the
6 participants in the debate advanced critical" --
7 THE INTERPRETER: Kindly slow down when reading. Thank you.
8 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
9 Q. [Previous translation continues]... consider Christopher Hill?
10 A. I'm sorry. I'm at a loss right now.
11 Q. All right. Tab 20 has three pages. I'm on the third page. Have
12 you found the third page of tab 20?
13 A. One, two, three, yeah.
14 Q. You see there are two columns on that page?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Left-hand column?
17 A. Yeah.
18 Q. Third paragraph begins "I wish to thank all individuals"?
19 A. Mm-mmm.
20 Q. Go down several lines you'll see "The participants in the debate
21 advanced critical remarks regarding the paper presented by Ambassador
22 Christopher Hill. The remarks are legitimate and I assign to them. The
23 above paper does not rely on the Milosevic-Holbrooke agreement as a whole,
24 it does not respect full equality of all national communities in Kosmet
25 and in many respects, contrary to the legal system of the Republic of
1 Serbia and of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia."
2 You may recall from your learning about this meeting that was held
3 that, in fact, this was a rather large gathering where the Hill proposal
4 was discussed, critical remarks were made, but always in an attempt to
5 improve upon the Hill paper from their perspective, of course, in an
6 attempt to advance the process. Would that be a fair statement?
7 A. Well, I think what needs to be added to this is - and that is also
8 expressed in Mr. Milutinovic's statement - that -- in the column
9 above: "Unfortunately, our meeting today was not attended by the
10 representatives of leading political parties of Albanians from Kosmet,"
11 that the criticism that came, of course, that those who followed the
12 invitation of the Serbian government were clearly those who aligned
13 themselves with -- with Belgrade position, which is, of course, very
15 But it did not -- by far not represent the majority of the
16 citizens of Kosovo. That was, unfortunately, the problem there. Those
17 who agreed with Belgrade were following -- were -- who accepted the
18 invitation, those representing the vast majority, LDK, Rugova, and so on,
19 did not accept the invitation and therefore what is expressed here that
20 they were critical of the Hill paper, yes, this group was critical.
21 Q. Well, if you and Ambassador Hill are working as, I would say,
22 international mediators in the shuttle diplomacy, why weren't you pushing
23 or convincing people like Rugova and others to attend, to sit down at the
25 A. We were, unfortunately, without success.
1 Q. Why weren't you successful?
2 A. We -- because the Kosovo Albanian majority wanted international
3 mediation to take place, not under the leadership of the government in
4 Serbia. That was the main point in all of this.
5 Q. But aren't you and Ambassador Hill internationals?
6 A. Yes, but we were just invited. We were not leading the mediation
7 initiated by the Government of Serbia.
8 Q. We've seen since March of 1998 the Security Council has called on
9 the parties to sit down and the two of you are there specifically for
10 that. You've become the Special Envoy. Why wouldn't the Albanians come
11 and sit at the table?
12 A. Because they decided not to do so.
13 Q. But you must know why. They must have told you why they wouldn't
14 come --
15 A. Yes, because they wanted a formalised process where the
16 international community is the mediator and not the Government of Serbia.
17 Q. All right.
18 A. It was not something that we accepted, you know. We said we --
19 you should go and you should do this, but we could not force them, of
20 course, to go there. So our function was really to be -- to be the
21 go-between and to convey to the Albanian side what the Serbian side was
22 interested in, the proposals and so on.
23 Q. So if one were to be critical of one side or the other, we would
24 have to say the Albanian side was open to criticism for not even accepting
25 your international mediation; whether they agreed with it or not, they
1 wouldn't come?
2 A. Well, again, you need to see this against the backdrop of the
3 political and the security situation in Kosovo.
4 Q. A day after this meeting in Pristina, the day after would be the
5 19th of November, are you aware that Mr. Milutinovic met with minority
6 groups, not the majority -- leaderships of the majority in Kosovo, but he
7 met with minority groups in Belgrade from the Turks, Roma, Goran, Muslim,
8 Egyptian, and Albanian?
9 A. Yes. They were also then present at Rambouillet, included in the
10 Serbia/Yugoslav delegation.
11 Q. And -- because exhibit -- tab 22, Exhibit 1D89, is the public
12 statement that came out of the meeting that you said you were aware of.
13 And there it's emphasised at the end of the second paragraph that: "All
14 the participants in today's talks have emphasised that their suggestions
15 and remarks leave enough space for the continuation of talks and the start
16 of essential dialogue on the topic of concrete solutions, which is in the
17 interest of all citizens and national communities that live in Kosovo and
19 Would that be a fair way of expressing where you were at in
20 mid-to-late November 1998 in this process, optimistic and moving in the
21 right direction?
22 A. I tell you one thing: When I see the list now of those who have
23 met with President Milutinovic, they are all honourable people, but they
24 were loyal to the Serb government and did not -- did not represent the
25 vast majority. None of those had any political relevance in the reality
1 of Kosovo, unfortunately I must say.
2 Q. There's nothing wrong with being a member of a minority, is there?
3 A. Absolutely not. On the contrary, I believe that was a very
4 positive move on the part of the Serbian government to point out there are
5 other minorities there, not -- this is something which we need to keep in
6 mind, each and every solution needs to include all the minorities. And
7 those who are here, I'm not talking about their representatives, this is a
8 different story, but that Kosovo is a multi-ethnic society is a very
9 important point that was made by inviting or including -- or pointing out
10 that here are others than Albanians and Serbs living as well.
11 Q. And there's nothing wrong with --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Petritsch, I may have missed this, but was
13 there some effort made to persuade the Serbian government to the point of
14 view of the Kosovo Albanians that there should be international mediation
15 rather than guest presence or shuttle diplomacy?
16 THE WITNESS: Yes. At the time, of course, we were trying to
17 convince Belgrade that we -- that we should move on to the next stage, it
18 would be a more robust one, a more rational one, a faster-moving one,
19 because simply the escalation ran away ahead of us in Kosovo and we had to
20 speed up this. I'm sure we will come back later to this. That was only
21 appreciated after the massacre in Racak on the 15th of January, 1999, that
22 everybody realised: Okay, this way of shuttle diplomacy and going back
23 and forth and trying all sorts does not work, because violence has taken
24 over the country, at least the province, I must say.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't know that that answers the question, which
1 is a very specific one. At the stage we are now discussing where you say
2 the stumbling block to Albanian attendance at discussions was that these
3 were under the chairmanship of the president of Serbia or the Serb
4 government. Was some specific effort made by you and others like you to
5 persuade the Serb government to authorise a different process?
6 THE WITNESS: Everybody in -- at the time was, of course, working
7 on this because each and every meeting not attended by the majority of the
8 Kosovo Albanian representatives demonstrated to the fact and underlined
9 the fact that they will simply not accept any Serb initiative. You need
10 to keep in mind this is the year 1998. They have been since 1989 now in
11 resistance to the government which has taken away the autonomy. That was
12 the problem. It was considered illegitimate by the Kosovo Albanian side.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: What then was their initiative to kick-start the
14 process that the United Nations had called upon the parties to engage
16 THE WITNESS: Well, they wanted, through mediators to -- and
17 that -- that was what happened, through mediators, the Kosovo Albanians
18 conveyed to the Serb side what their positions are in -- on details of
19 this agreement, of this draft.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: So we'll see no documents that indicate that this
21 was happening, that some effort was being made to re-style these
22 negotiations or discussions in a way that would be acceptable to both
23 sides? Where is the evidence that somebody actually tried to do this at
24 this point in time? I understand what you're saying about later.
25 THE WITNESS: I can only recall what -- what a standard phrase in
1 our meetings was: By the way, we need to move on to a more coherent stage
2 of -- a more productive stage of mediation and consultations and
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, if you don't mind me saying so, that sounds
5 like diplomatic language that could mean a great many things.
6 THE WITNESS: No. It can only mean what I just said, what was
7 just indicated. Clearly, there was a resistance --
8 JUDGE BONOMY: What does it mean, then?
9 THE WITNESS: It means basically that things that we were doing
10 were not really working properly.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: But you had a specific proposal -- I'm talking
12 about a specific proposal that you say would have got things going --
13 THE WITNESS: Mm-hmm.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: -- which was that there was mutual chairmanship or
15 mediation rather than simply observer status and carrying messages back
16 and forward, and I'm really anxious to know whether that was ever conveyed
17 to Mr. Milutinovic and others.
18 THE WITNESS: Absolutely, but the answer was we are a sovereign
19 state, we are handling our matters ourselves.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: So that's something you raised with him?
21 THE WITNESS: Every -- Mr. Hill, myself, many other ambassadors,
22 European Union, whatever, this was clearly a point that we were
23 increasingly frustrated, that it -- this process went far too slow, in
24 comparison to the escalation of the conflict.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I understand all of that, and don't question for a
1 minute that you always felt that you were playing catch-up. But I -- it
2 would certainly be of interest to me to see a document or one of these
3 telexs that simply says: We've put this proposal to the Serbs and they
4 just won't accept it; we're at a loss how to move this forward. Because
5 in spite of what you say, that statement about the need to move forward to
6 more specific forms of negotiation actually doesn't say anything to an
7 ordinary layman. It might mean plenty to a diplomat, but it means nothing
8 to me, I have to say.
9 THE WITNESS: Yeah, but -- I'm sorry to disagree, but clearly, you
10 were not involved in these talks. Yeah. So in there it was a clear
11 understanding that this will be necessary sooner or later, rather sooner
12 than later. Plus you need to keep in mind that in parallel, you had at
13 the time, 19th of November, for example, here, where the public statement
14 was, you already had the Kosovo Verification Mission of the OSCE in place.
15 Yeah. So you had this double track, on the one hand trying to --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Petritsch, with all due respect to you, the
17 Kosovo Verification Mission was never in place and we have that evidence
18 from people who were part of it. It was a plan which was well meant but
19 was never properly implemented, as far as the evidence so far indicates.
20 THE WITNESS: It was never fully implemented, because it was
21 overturned by events; that's true. But the structure was there with the
22 people. Not the full amount of people, 1600, if I remember correctly, it
23 never crossed 1.000 or so, but it was there.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan.
25 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
1 Q. My last question to you, which you agreed with, was that
2 these -- looking at document 1D89, the minority groups that are meeting
3 with Mr. Milutinovic and which were active in this process which supported
4 the state, you have said there's nothing wrong with being a minority or
5 supporting the state?
6 A. Absolutely. On the contrary.
7 Q. And the Serbian government never excluded the majority Albanian
8 leadership from participating. They were -- in fact, it was quite the
9 contrary, they would have met with them and they would have sought a
10 meaningful framework agreement. Isn't that correct?
11 A. Well, the Kosovar Albanian leadership constantly pointed out
12 that -- that the status of autonomy was taken away from them in 1989.
13 Yeah. And as long as this is not re-instituted, this is for them - and
14 I'm just interpreting them - without supporting them, just to say what
15 their reasoning was as long as this is not the case. We do not consider
16 the government, the Serbian government, the Yugoslav government, legal in
17 this case. That's all there is to it. And you need to keep this in mind
18 in order to understand why were they so hesitant, not that I agreed with
19 it, we pushed nevertheless, but that was just a big stumbling block on the
21 Q. Wouldn't the obvious way to get autonomy back, wouldn't the
22 obvious way to be to negotiate with the state authorities?
23 A. This is what we said. This is what we constantly stressed. You
24 need to sit down, you need to talk to the authorities in Belgrade, and
25 then they will agree, but they simply did not -- did not act accordingly.
1 They wanted -- they said: We did not negotiate the abolition of autonomy
2 and therefore we are not going to negotiate something which rightly
3 belongs to us.
4 Q. We would also agree that to engage in that process does not
5 require international presence, does it? You could have had -- you could
6 have had people of good will on both sides sitting down at the table
7 without internationalising it. I'm not saying internationalising, it
8 hurts, but you didn't -- it wasn't a prerequisite, was it?
9 A. You have to keep in mind again that in parallel to these public
10 statements there were actions of the Serb security forces underway with
11 terrible humanitarian situation, IDPs, and so on. So that was -- I mean,
12 it's a bit -- a lot asking them to do as if nothing had happened between
13 1989 and 1998. That's -- again, I'm just trying to -- to paint the
14 context in order to understand why there was such a -- difficulties. And
15 still, in spite of this, we are trying to push the Albanians into engaging
16 in this.
17 Q. Well, let's talk about that and let's talk about the context. We
18 are here at the 19th of November. The Milosevic-Holbrooke Agreement has
19 been finalised. KVM is establishing itself. The Serb army and police
20 have withdrawn. You talked about a parallel -- a -- parallel attempts.
21 One is to stop the fighting. And now we're looking at the diplomatic
22 political track to find the solution. So my point is: If we put
23 ourselves in this time-frame we do have a period of calm and unfortunately
24 the KLA, as you know, is moving back into position, isn't it?
25 A. Definitely. This is a very crucial point in the
1 Holbrooke-Milosevic Agreement, that it was only negotiated with Milosevic
2 and did not include the Kosovar Albanians. So they did not feel obliged
3 by this agreement that -- that that was a big problem in the whole set-up
4 and there was not -- there was not enough done on the part of the
5 international community to engage the military side of the Kosovar
6 Albanians. That was the problem at the time. So therefore, they had a
7 chance to move back into where the Yugoslav forces had left.
8 Q. I want to draw your attention to a "Joint Proposal of the
9 Agreement on the Political Framework of Self-Governance in Kosovo and
10 Metohija" dated on the 20th of November, 1998. You'll see that at tab 24,
11 which is Exhibit 1D91. Now, you knew about the existence of this
12 agreement at the time; correct? Are you familiar of it? Let me refresh
13 your memory?
14 A. I knew of it. We have seen it at the time, but since then I have
15 not revisited it. This is the first time now.
16 Q. Then in fairness to you let's look at the first page and perhaps
17 the three first paragraphs may help refresh your memory with dates and
18 events. The first paragraph reads: "The political solution to the
19 problems in Kosovo and Metohija was considered in Pristina on 18 November
20 and in Belgrade on 19 November with a delegation of" certain parties.
21 Further down, I won't read them all -- and further in that same
22 paragraph: "As well as with the representatives of the socialist party of
23 Serbia and the president of the Serbian Radical Party and the Yugoslav
24 United Left Party. President Milutinovic also held consultations on the
25 same issue on 20 November with the presidents of the Serbian renewal
1 movement, New Democracy, and Alliance of the Vojvodina Hungarians. At
2 these talks and consultations, full support was given to the agreement
3 between President Milosevic and Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, particularly
4 to the political framework for the resolution of problems in Kosmet
5 expressed in 11 points of the government of Serbia. Also many concrete
6 comments and suggestions were made on the ways to achieve and
7 institutionalise a political solution to the problems in Kosovo and
9 Now, this may help refresh your memory that this was the
10 culmination, this agreement was the culmination of all these events,
11 including your shuttle diplomacy, at this point on the 20th of November.
12 Would that be a fair --
13 A. No. I mean, this proposal is a joint proposal between those
14 parties which are listed above, which I -- which we referred to earlier on
15 that they unfortunately did not represent the majority of Kosovar
16 Albanians in Kosovo and the Government of Serbia. It has nothing to do
17 with the international paper, Hill, and myself.
18 Q. I'm not suggesting that this document includes those other groups.
19 I'm not suggesting that it was a final agreement or even one that was
21 A. Okay.
22 Q. What I am suggesting to you is that this, as we've followed the
23 evolution of this process since the creation of the Markovic delegation
24 and your involvement with Ambassador Hill and your drafts, this agreement
25 is the fruits of that process, is it not?
1 A. That was done totally without Hill and myself, so I am not aware
2 that anything of what we did was really actively involved in here or taken
3 up. Might be; I do not know. I have not studied it, but it was indeed a
4 joint proposal by those specific parties of Kosovo and the Government of
6 Q. In the preambulary language I just read to you, there was
7 reference to the 11-point Milosevic-Holbrooke Agreement. And I would ask
8 you to turn to tab 25 which is Exhibit 1D204. And that's a letter sent by
9 the permanent mission of Yugoslavia to the UN addressed to the President
10 of the Security Council. And attached to that is the 11-point document.
11 A. Mm-hmm.
12 Q. That came about as a result of the meetings held between
13 Ambassador Holbrooke and President Milosevic in early October and I think
14 you've probably seen this document with the 11 points before.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And this is the document that led to the arrival of the OSCE, as
17 we've heard; correct?
18 A. That's correct.
19 Q. And we see that in the fourth paragraph of this document on page
20 2. The sixth paragraph says: "In addition a political framework has been
21 worked out. An agreement has been reached on the principles of a
22 political solution and on a timetable framework for its realisation which
23 is an important achievement."
24 So, Ambassador, what we have here is --
25 A. I'm sorry, I could not find it.
1 Q. I'm sorry.
2 A. Could you again point to the --
3 Q. It's the second page of this exhibit, 1D204.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. At the top of the second page it says: "Annex." Do you see that?
6 Tab 25 for you.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Tab 25.
9 A. 25, yes. "Annex, Serbian government endorsed accord reached by
10 President Milosevic."
11 Q. If you go down to the sixth paragraph, beginning: "In addition."
12 A. Yes, I've got it.
13 Q. "A political framework has been worked out. An agreement has been
14 reached on the principles of a political solution and on a timetable
15 framework for its realisation, which is an important achievement."
16 Now, this Holbrooke-Milosevic document, doesn't it represent in
17 addition to the Milosevic-Yeltsin agreement in June a second foray into
18 having the international community involved?
19 A. Yes. This was seen as an important next step. It got both the
20 OSCE involved and NATO. There were two agreements, one with OSCE and the
21 other one with NATO for surveillance -- NATO surveillance mission over
22 Kosovo. And that -- and this, so to speak, the civilian part was the
23 so-called agreement with -- included the 11 points which President
24 Milutinovic put forward and which, by the way, later on then became part
25 of the so-called non-negotiable principles, which I drafted and also
1 included the relevant points from the 11 points of President Milutinovic.
2 So these -- this is a very important next step that had been taken on the
3 part of the Serbian government.
4 Q. And if you turn to the next page. I'm thinking -- I'm looking at
5 paragraphs 5, 6, and 7. You don't have to look at them in detail but I
6 would ask you just to peruse them quickly. We're talking there about
7 setting up a future in Kosovo and Metohija based on equality,
8 self-governance, and legal frameworks, and the invitation to the OSCE to
9 supervise elections to ensure their openness and fairness.
10 A. Mm-hmm.
11 Q. Correct?
12 A. Correct.
13 Q. The last point I want to look at in this document with you is the
14 timetable. It said: "By Wednesday, October 14th, a comprehensive
15 timetable will be agreed upon building on the following elements" --
16 A. I'm sorry, now, I'm at a loss again -- oh, timetable, it's down
17 here, yeah.
18 Q. I should direct you better I'm sorry.
19 October 19th there's the agreement on the OSCE. On the next page
20 by 2nd of October: "The completion of an agreement containing core
21 elements for a political settlement in Kosovo and Metohija using as a
22 basis the paper proposed by the Contact Group, 2 October 1998."
23 We've just looked at, Ambassador, the proposal for settlement
24 dated 20 October. Now, it may be 18 days late but we can see that the
25 commitment of the timetable was fairly close, wasn't it?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Are you aware that on the 25th of November, 1998, in Pristina, the
3 delegation -- Professor Markovic's delegation and representatives of
4 minority groups again went back to Pristina, and there Mr. Milutinovic
5 chaired a meeting where there was a signing of a declaration in support of
6 this joint proposal or agreement. 25th of November, does that sound
7 familiar to you?
8 A. No, unfortunately I cannot recall this but I can imagine that this
9 took place, yes.
10 Q. That's at tab 26. Sixteen, the declaration may help refresh your
11 memory. Tab 26 is Exhibit 1D18 from the Weller book, e-court 372. You
12 see the text of the --
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. -- declaration, who was present.
15 A. Mm-hmm.
16 Q. And then the signatories. You see Dr. Markovic.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. You see that people of the minority groups living in Kosovo and
19 Dr. Kutlesic, who as we know is the Special Envoy of President Milosevic?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Right?
22 A. Mm-hmm.
23 Q. And my position is that this, of course, did not end the process.
24 It was an important building-block in the process because, if we turn to
25 tab 27, which is 1D18, 373 to 379, it's the Hill proposal of the 2nd of
1 December, 1998. So clearly the process was not finalised. You and
2 Professor -- Ambassador Hill were still working, but I'm sure that you
3 took into account what -- the joint proposal we looked at on the 20th of
4 November, I'm sure you probably had a look at that when you were revising
5 the Hill proposal. Would that be --
6 A. As a matter of routine, clearly we contacted both sides before we
7 issued a new draft proposal.
8 Q. Now, I've been suggesting to you that the state delegation and the
9 minority groups who supported the state were being constructive. I would
10 also put it to you that people like Mr. Demaqi were being destructive.
11 Would you agree with that in this period during this process?
12 A. Yes, this is true but again you need to keep in mind whom they
13 represented and whom Mr. Demaqi and who Mr. Rugova represented. The
14 problem was always that the majority did not join these efforts and was
15 never convinced, neither by the Serb government nor by the international
16 community, to get engaged.
17 Q. Did you consider Ambassador Hill to be unfamiliar with the
18 Albanian question?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Did you consider him deficient and in need of being replaced?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Let's look at tab 28. Exhibit 1D, the Weller book, e-court 379.
23 On the right-hand column you see: "Kosova press release. Demaqi rejects
24 Hill's plan 8 December, 1998.
25 Now here's what Mr. Demaqi says about Ambassador Hill: "Mr. Chris
1 Hill is either unfamiliar with the Albanian question or else is taking
2 sides with the Serbs, accommodating their demands," Demaqi says. "The UCK
3 representative urged the State Department, if it is possible, to review
4 the work of Mr. Holbrooke and Mr. Hill, especially the latter, and find
5 people who do not have the prejudices of Dayton, who do not have some
6 deficiencies which we see as the cases of such oscillations which have
7 astonished the Albanian and international public. Demaqi said he would
8 like the State Department to review Hill's record and possibly find a man
9 who would be free of the past and committed to serious efforts in pursuit
10 of a real solution, a solution that would be lasting against the backdrop
11 of the Albanian/Serb contest."
12 Now, would you agree with that description of Ambassador Hill?
13 A. No, not at all, but it attests to the fact that Ambassador Hill
14 tried to do an objective, professional job, not getting a clause from
15 either side just to see to it that a just and equitable compromise is
16 being worked out. Clearly more extreme positions like the one from Demaqi
17 would not be happy about this, and that's a sign of the quality of the
18 draft for me.
19 Q. Let's look at the last sentence of this declaration: "Adem Demaqi
20 said it was his historic mission to unite the Albanians so that we would
21 be united in force and politics and create our state."
22 Now, you know that his vision was more than an independent Kosovo;
23 he wanted to unite Albanians across Macedonia, Kosovo, and Albania;
25 A. Well, there were ideas. There were and are ideas out there that
1 range from a Greater Serbia to a Greater Albania. This is something which
2 is indigenous to this region but has no whatsoever relevance for the
3 reality on the ground.
4 Q. And the -- for the UCK to achieve this they would have to affect
5 three sovereign states, wouldn't they: Macedonia, FRY, and Albania.
6 A. Absolutely, and that was clearly something that the international
7 community ruled out. At the time, 1998/1999, we were working for a
8 solution within the internationally recognised borders of Yugoslavia.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Petritsch, if you go below the centre of this
10 press release to the end of the quotation from Demaqi, you'll see that
11 it's claimed: "He is very much in agreement with the position the chief
12 Kosovo negotiator Fehmi Agani took with regard to the latest Hill draft
13 plan. I think the time has come for us Albanians to offer our own
14 proposal that we ourselves offer our assistance to the solution of this
16 A very odd quotation from him at this stage in the matter.
17 THE WITNESS: I would not say so. Dr. Agani, he's, as I said
18 before, the main negotiator on the Kosovar Albanian part, a trusted aid of
19 Mr. Rugova, basically expressed what he was -- what his opinion was. And
20 indeed, if I remember correctly, the December draft, the last one that
21 they are referring to there, we were trying to accomplish as much possible
22 from -- from the Serb side. We reached out as far as we thought it is
23 possible yet at the same time clearly we were of -- very much aware that
24 this will meet the protest of the Albanian side. But we tried it out
25 nevertheless; this is the nature of any such shuttle diplomacy and
2 JUDGE BONOMY: The impression -- the reason I ask the question
3 was, the impression might be taken from this statement that they had not
4 until then offered any assistance to the solution of the problem.
5 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry, I didn't get that.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't -- the reason I asked you the question.
7 THE WITNESS: Yes.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: -- is that one might read this as an indication that
9 up until that point in time the Albanians had not offered any assistance
10 to the solution of the problem.
11 THE WITNESS: No. What -- what Agani's indicating here is that
12 they would not simply feed in their ideas into -- into our proposals, but
13 basically would come up with their very own initiative so to speak.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
15 THE WITNESS: Because there they realised they thought that now
16 they are being crossed and therefore that -- that, in my opinion, is
17 reflected in this text, which I see the first time here.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
19 Mr. O'Sullivan.
20 MR. O'SULLIVAN:
21 Q. Ambassador, let's move to Rambouillet. And you've told us that
22 this process came about as a result of the meeting of the Contact Group
23 held in London on the 29th of January, 1999; correct?
24 A. Yes, that's correct.
25 Q. And we've heard evidence in this case about key dates and
1 personalities, but to give you and those of us present here some context
2 at tab 29 as Exhibit 1D16, which is a calendar of the month of February.
3 It's there to assist you if -- if you need it. You're covering lots of
4 material here today.
5 A. Yeah.
6 Q. But you told us that the conference began on Saturday the 6th of
8 A. Mm-hmm.
9 Q. And ended on Tuesday the 23rd; correct?
10 A. Yes, correct.
11 Q. And we've also been told that initially it could have been a
12 one-week process. It was extended a second week, until the 20th,
13 Saturday, the 20th, and yet again until Tuesday, the 23rd. Is that
15 A. That's correct.
16 Q. And the meeting was extended on the 20th following a meeting of
17 the Contact Group which was held at Rambouillet?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And the six Contact Group countries were the US, the UK, France,
20 Germany, Russian Federation, Germany, and Italy?
21 A. Yes, correct.
22 Q. And the co-chairs were Mr. Vedrine and Mr. Cook from the -- France
23 and the UK respectively. We know that you were a member of the troika
24 with Ambassadors Hill and Mayorski; correct?
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. And at the time Germany held the Presidency of the EU. Is that
3 A. Correct.
4 Q. Exhibit P2792 is your interview with the Prosecutor of this
5 Tribunal and at page 2 you said this: "In February the Serbian
6 negotiating team at Rambouillet had a mandate to compromise and to come to
7 an agreement on the political aspects of the proposal, i.e., the question
8 and level of autonomy for Kosovo."
9 At page 3 you state more precisely: "At Rambouillet the Serb
10 delegation had a mandate to negotiate the political agreement but they
11 were clearly not mandated to negotiate about the implementation of such an
13 Now, my question is whether you are familiar with the conclusions
14 of the Serbian Assembly of the 4th of February, 1999, which established
15 this delegation and created its mandate. Are you familiar with this --
16 these conclusions of the 4th of February?
17 A. I don't recall them.
18 Q. You don't recall hearing about those?
19 A. I know that there is -- I knew about it but now, I mean, it's too
20 long away that --
21 Q. No, I won't ask you to recite it chapter and verse, but you knew
22 that -- that the Serbian -- the National Assembly had debated the issue --
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. -- and discussed it and come to its conclusions on whether or not
25 to attend --
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. -- and who to send and what their mandate would be. Is that a
3 fair summary that you ...
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Tab 31 is 1D93, Ambassador, and it's the conclusions of the
6 assembly -- National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia of the 4th of
7 February, 1999, and --
8 A. It's --
9 Q. -- it's at tab 31 for you and 1D93 for e-court. And it's a rather
10 lengthy document that I will not take you through it in great detail. But
11 if you turn to paragraph 10. Do you have paragraph 10 in front of you?
12 That makes reference to this joint proposal of the 20th of November, 1998,
13 and the declaration in Pristina of the 25th of November?
14 A. Mm-hmm.
15 Q. 1998. Paragraph 11 says: "Concerning the demand that the parties
16 accept the level and nature of international presence deemed appropriate
17 by the international community, the National Assembly wishes to note the
18 level and nature of this international presence in Kosmet has been
19 ultimately defined in the agreement between the president of the FRY,
20 Slobodan Milosevic, and Ambassador Richard Holbrooke in the agreement
21 between the federal government and the OSCE on the establishment of the
22 OSCE verification mission in Kosmet in accordance with it."
23 Now, this reflects the position as you knew it on the 4th of
24 February; correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Paragraph 14 the National Assembly points out that: "Any demand
2 for substantial or high degree of self-governance for Kosmet not only in
3 further negotiations cannot lead to independence for Kosovo and Metohija
4 or a status of a third federal unit, but that this autonomy can simply
5 cannot imply the severance of legal, political, economic ties within the
6 Republic of Serbia."
7 You were aware of that position, weren't you?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. If we turn to the section headed by V, if you can find that, V,
10 paragraph 2 (ii), the National Assembly of Serbia once again re-affirms
11 the principles on the basis of which the crisis of Kosovo and Metohija can
12 be resolved successfully, durably, and in the interests of all."
13 Then there's a number of bullet points. We see the reference to
14 political means and dialogue, full respect for territorial integrity and
15 sovereignty, full equality, harmonisation with constitutions and
16 legislation, no independence, and the last point at the bottom of the
17 page: "We do not accept the presence of foreign soldiers in our territory
18 under any pretext of implementing the achieved agreement."
19 Now, you were aware of this position, weren't you?
20 A. I was not aware of this specific point here that you just made.
21 Q. Could you explain to us, how could it be that you were one of the
22 negotiators, a representative of Contact Group at Rambouillet, and you
23 were not aware of the conclusions passed by the -- adopted by the
24 government two days before the conference took -- how is that possible --
25 the Assembly, sorry. The Assembly.
1 A. The -- what is expressed in this paper here in the conclusions of
2 the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia does not really bring
3 anything new. So we were, of course, aware that there is resistance
4 against any military presence there. We had for weeks on end negotiated
5 that the unarmed international presence would be -- to this would be added
6 an armed component. And we were at one point quite close to this, but we
7 never succeeded for KVM to achieve this. And the background again to this
8 is that while the international community was there unarmed, the armed
9 conflict escalated and it was clear - clear to everybody - that one would
10 in the end need a military component in order to pacify Kosovo.
11 Q. I think you've answered my specific question already, but my
12 question was quite specific. You knew about the position adopted by the
13 National Assembly in regard to no foreign troops. You knew about that?
14 A. I knew about the Serb position on this.
15 Q. Thank you. This -- these conclusions also appoint a delegation
16 and at tab 32, Exhibit P967, we have the members of that delegation
17 named. Do you see that, Ambassador?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And you -- those are the names you are familiar with --
20 A. Yes, I know that --
21 Q. People you spent time with in the lovely castle in the south of
23 A. Yes, I knew them all.
24 Q. Professor Markovic was the head of the delegation, and I note the
25 persons listed at 6, 7, 8, 9, and 11 and 12 are from the Muslim, Turkish,
1 Goran, Albanian, Roma, and Egyptian communities; correct?
2 A. That's correct, yeah.
3 Q. Now, exhibit -- one moment, please. Tab 30 for you, Exhibit
5 A. 30?
6 Q. Tab 30. P979. That's the statement of the Contact Group from
7 29 --
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. -- January 1990 in London which summoned the parties to
10 Rambouillet; correct?
11 A. Correct.
12 Q. I'm looking at paragraph 3(D). Do you see that paragraph, 3(D)?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Three lines up from the bottom it says: "The Contact Group
15 recognises the legitimate rights of all other communities within Kosovo."
16 By that they mean the non-Albanian majority; correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And we've seen that the Serbian delegation has representatives
19 from not only the Serb and Albanian groups but the minorities?
20 A. Yes, and was very welcome.
21 Q. Yes. And of course the Kosovar Albanian delegation at Rambouillet
22 was only made up of Kosovar Albanians, wasn't it?
23 A. Yes.
24 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Your Honour, are we breaking at 1.45?
25 JUDGE BONOMY: We will have to because there's another case here
1 in the afternoon.
2 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Well, this may be a convenient place for me --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: It may -- you've got a fair distance to go still,
5 MR. O'SULLIVAN: Yes. I'm not suggesting we stay.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Would the change from yellow tabs to blue tabs have
7 any significance? Did you run out of yellow ones?
8 MR. O'SULLIVAN: I think the container got empty, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
10 In an ideal world we would carry on for another session today but
11 we can't because we don't have the space. It's as simple as that. We
12 have to sit in shifts in this court --
13 THE WITNESS: I have to go back and do my work in Geneva but of
14 course I'm at your disposal.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, we need tomorrow morning, again at 9.00, and
16 hopefully we will complete it. Mr. O'Sullivan, I understand, has a far
17 longer cross-examination than any other counsel and there may only be two
18 other counsel with a number of questions for you and then re-examination
19 by the Prosecution. So can I invite you with regret to leave again with
20 the usher and we'll see you tomorrow at 9.00.
21 THE WITNESS: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 [The witness stands down]
23 JUDGE BONOMY: And, Mr. O'Sullivan, your efforts to rectify the
24 record, so far as your exhibits are concerned, failed again.
25 MR. O'SULLIVAN: I know.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: And it should be, I think, P559.
2 MR. O'SULLIVAN: That's correct, thank you.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
4 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.44 p.m.,
5 to be reconvened on Friday, the 2nd day of
6 March, 2007, at 9.00 a.m.