1 Friday, 26 October 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The accused Milutinovic not present]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. O'Sullivan, I gather Mr. Milutinovic will join
7 us shortly and the situation has been explained to me, and that's entirely
8 entirely satisfactorily, as long as you're content that we proceed. Thank
10 Mr. Ackerman, there is a request about Exhibit 4D499, which was
11 the statement of Velimir Obradovic. There is no objection to substituting
12 the one you've now tendered, and we therefore will grant that application.
13 [The witness entered court]
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Aleksic, your next witness.
15 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honour. Our next
16 witness is Ljubisa Stojimirovic.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stojimirovic, good morning.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Can you take the solemn declaration to speak the
20 truth by reading aloud the document which will now be given to you.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
22 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Please be seated.
24 WITNESS: LJUBISA STOJIMIROVIC
25 [Witness answered through interpreter].
1 JUDGE BONOMY: You'll now be examined by Mr. Aleksic on behalf of
2 Mr. Pavkovic.
3 Mr. Aleksic.
4 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
5 Examination by Mr. Aleksic:
6 Q. [Interpretation] General, good morning.
7 A. Good morning.
8 Q. Could you tell us your full name for the record?
9 A. Ljubisa R. Stojimirovic.
10 Q. On the 2nd October 2007, did you give a statement to the Defence
11 team of General Pavkovic?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Before you signed it, were you able to read it?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. If you were asked the same questions today, would you give the
16 same answers?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Thank you, General.
19 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this is Exhibit 4D506,
20 and I would like to tender it.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
23 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. General, would you tell the Court briefly about your military
25 career. And since you didn't mention that in your statement, tell us
1 about the positions you held after 1999.
2 A. I was born in 1951. I completed the military academy for ground
3 forces in Belgrade in 1974. My first officer's positions were in the
4 Guard Brigade, where I stayed until 1990. In that period, I graduated
5 from the Command Staff Academy and again returned to the Guard Brigade.
6 In 1990, I was appointed to a position in the office of the chief of the
7 Gen A staff. The Chief of Staff was General Adzic. I became commander of
8 the army Protection Regiment in Skopje in 1992. And with that regiment and
9 other units, based on an agreement between the FRY and Macedonia, we left
10 the -- we withdrew from the Macedonian territory.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Mr. Aleksic, we have all this. We're
12 only halfway through the first paragraph of your written statement. I
13 appreciate that your question then went on to ask the witness about his
14 service after 1999. And perhaps you could concentrate on -- on that and
15 anything in particular you need to lead evidence about in 1998 and 1999.
16 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. That's why
17 I stressed to the general that it should be brief.
18 Q. Since all this is in your statement, can you tell us about the
19 duties you held after 1999, please.
20 A. In 2001 I left the position of the Chief of Staff of the 3rd Army
21 and became Chief of Staff of the 1st Army, in which position I remained
22 for three -- for four months.
23 After that, I was appointed to a position in the General Staff to
24 be assistant chief of General Staff for land forces, then assistant chief
25 of General Staff for operations and staff affairs. Then I became
1 assistant head of the academy, then became again assistant chief of staff
2 for operation and staff duties. And I was later retired.
3 Q. In which rank were you retired?
4 A. Lieutenant general.
5 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Can we call up in e-court 4D240,
6 page 5, that is, the last page.
7 Q. General, could you please look at this document. Do you recognise
8 it? And can you describe it for us briefly.
9 A. This is an informational document from the so-called identity card
10 of the 3rd Army, and it provides us with important information about its
11 area of responsibility and its human resources.
12 We see that the area of the zone of responsibility is 440.000
13 kilometres square, that is, 41 per cent of the territory of Serbia. It
14 has borders with four foreign states: Bulgaria, Macedonia, Albania, and
15 Romania. And the length is 35 per cent of the whole state border of the
16 state of Yugoslavia towards all foreign states.
17 What is important is that in this part of the territory of FRY the
18 area of responsibility of the 3rd Army, the population is about 3.7
19 million, which is about 35 per cent of all the population of the Federal
20 Republic of Yugoslavia.
21 There is an administrative division in which the institutions of
22 the 3rd Army were deployed, over 70 municipalities and 14 districts, with
23 about 200 -- 2.400 populated centres.
24 Over 400.000 citizens lived in this area of various ethnicities
25 who had served their military service and belonged in the 21-to-60 age
1 group. And as trained citizens, they were assigned to units of the 3rd
2 Army as the reserve force; also the units of the MUP also as reserve;
3 units of the Ministry of Defence, in rear units; whereas, around 120.000
4 citizens were not assigned, that is, did not belong to the category of
5 citizens who had assignments in the army, the MUP, or the Ministry of
7 Q. Thank you. Can we see page 4 of this exhibit.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Are these 120.000 adult males between 21 and 60?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Those 400.000 citizens who lived in
10 the area of responsibility of the 3rd Army were citizens who had completed
11 their military service in the former JNA or the Army of Yugoslavia, and
12 they remain on the records until the age of 60. They served their
13 military service in -- at the age of 18 or perhaps the age of 21,
14 according to later legislation. But they remain on the record and they
15 belong to the category of citizenry who have assignments in the army
16 units, police units, et cetera. So out of 3.6 million, 400.000 are
17 citizens who had completed their military service.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: I understand that. My question was about the
19 120.000 who were not assigned. Were -- were these adult males?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, they are adult males, but there
21 was no current need to assign them, and they were in all the age groups,
22 because both the army and the police and the units of the Ministry of
23 Defence sought to have younger men in their ranks.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
25 Mr. Aleksic.
1 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Can you describe briefly this schematic.
3 A. This is the peacetime deployment of the units of the 3rd Army
4 grouped in two corps: The Nis and the Pristina Corps., in 14 different
5 garrisons, located in major cities, and eight garrison places, that is,
6 smaller towns. In this overview, we see that the Nis Corps, since it had
7 a larger area, around 30.000 square kilometres, had units and
8 installations distributed across eight garrisons and eight garrison
9 points; whereas, the Nis Corps was distributed across seven garrisons and
10 one garrison post.
11 It's important to say that in this part of the state territory
12 there were not only units of the Army of Yugoslavia and the 3rd Army but
13 also units of the Air Force and Air Defence, of course under the command
14 of the commander of the Air Defence and Air Force. There were also
15 certain institutions of the Ministry of Defence, but all of them were in
16 the area of responsibility of the 3rd Army.
17 Q. Thank you, General.
18 Can we look at page 3.
19 A. This is a detailed overview of the forces and deployment of those
20 forces securing 950 kilometres of responsibility over the state border
21 facing Bulgaria, Romania, and Bulgaria -- and Albania. There were in
22 total six border battalions. And in the -- on the river lines facing
23 Romania, on the Danube, there was a Danube detachment. In view of the
24 strength of these units and their complement, the total manpower we had
25 securing the borders were about 5.000 officers, NCOs, and soldiers.
1 Q. Thank you, General.
2 Can we look at page 2.
3 A. This is a very important overview which can explain for us the
4 essence of the organisation of the 3rd Army and its structure. The 3rd
5 Army, by its organisation, had the command of the army, of course, but
6 also two operations structures: Pristina Corps, Nis Corps, and two
7 commands that were military -- territorial commands, Nis and Pristina
8 districts. The total forces shown here tell us about the units.
9 The Nis Corps, in its organisation, had three A brigades and eight
10 NA brigades. The Nis Corps had six A brigades and six NA brigades;
11 whereas, independent units which were attached to and under the command of
12 the army commander, just like the corps, were two A units. In total, over
13 200 battalions and army battalions, that is, A and NA units.
14 Q. General, can I just interrupt you. Can you explain for the Trial
15 Chamber what are A units and what are NA units.
16 A. A units were our elite units. They were -- they had about 80
17 per cent complement in peacetime, fulled with peacetime personnel. In
18 peacetime, their complement was about 80 per cent of the establishment
19 together with commands. However, with NA units, which were practically
20 reserve units, the complement was 10 to 15 per cent of the establishment
21 and the commands were not filled up to establishment either. They
22 sometimes had to fulfil very important tasks in peacetime and their
23 mobilisation time was very short. I'm talking about A units. And these
24 peacetime units had among their tasks to secure the borders; whereas, NA
25 units were activated only in cases of immediate danger of war or in case
1 the state of war was proclaimed. And then the reserve personnel was called
2 up. Their mobilisation time was longer, of course, I can explain it using
3 the example of one brigade.
4 Let's take a brigade that numbers 4500 men. In peacetime, they
5 had 3.000, actually. With an NA unit of the same complement, their actual
6 number was in peacetime 150 to 200. In peacetime, they could also assume
7 some important duties in case of natural disasters and catastrophes,
8 because their personnel was qualified and they had the necessary equipment
9 to work very efficiently on such tasks.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Aleksic, you still have on your screen lines 11
11 to 13 from page 7. It says: "The Nis Corps in its organisation had
12 three A brigades and eight NA brigades." And then the next sentence
13 said: "The Nis Corps had six A brigades and six NA brigades."
14 Now, is that what the witness said or was there a reference to the
15 Pristina Corps? Could you clarify that.
16 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Certainly, Your Honour.
17 Q. General, could you repeat, please.
18 A. The Nis Corps had in its organisation three A brigades and eight
19 NA brigades. The Pristina Corps had six A brigades and three NA brigades.
20 And independent army units immediately linked to the army command had two
21 A brigades.
22 Q. Since we have this SAJ acronym here. You explained they were
23 independent. Can you explain?
24 A. Independent units and institutions that were outside the corps,
25 they were linked to the army command, primarily the commander; however, in
1 view of the great number of those independent units and institutions -
2 there were in total 30 - the commander had the power to subordinate part
3 of those units to his assistants beginning with me as chief of staff to
4 the assistant for logistics, General Mladenovic. I, for instance, was in
5 contact with 18 independent army units. General Mladenovic had contact
6 with 10.
7 Q. General, please slow down a little.
8 A. May I proceed?
9 Q. Yes. Please go ahead.
10 A. For example, the signals unit, the regiment, Colonel Jankovic
11 testified yesterday, one of the commanders. That was an independent unit
12 that was linked to the army command.
13 Then a battalion for securing the command of the army, an
14 independent unit too. The recruitment centre is an independent army unit.
15 Then an artillery brigade is also an independent army unit. Logistics
16 bases that were under General Mladenovic were also independent army units.
17 Q. Thank you, General.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Just, again, a matter for the transcript. If you go
19 to line 4 on page 9, there's a reference there to the SAJ acronym. Now,
20 where -- where did that crop up for the first time?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, that is the old
22 standard name formulated in the General Staff and the establishment books,
23 and it dates back to 15 or 20 years ago for sure. These are units that
24 all strategic groups had. This is not something that is specific only to
25 the 3rd Army. All army commanders had their units.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Aleksic, had it -- you asked a question. Now,
2 had the expression "SAJ" cropped up in the transcript or is it in the
4 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it's in the exhibit on
5 the right-hand side. You see in English as well: Nis Corps, Pristina
6 Corps, and SAJ. That's what it says.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, what -- okay. What are the full words
8 that "SAJ" represent?
9 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. General, would you please repeat what SAJ means.
11 A. Independent army units and institutions. I repeat, from the
12 signals regiment to the military orchestra and the army centre.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: You don't necessarily need to repeat it. But in
14 the exhibit, the name given for "SAJ" is Special Anti-terrorist Unit, and
15 this is what I'm trying to be clear about.
16 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do apologise. I just
17 looked at the English version now, but I think that the witness explained
18 what the difference was -- or rather, what the acronym meant in Serbian
20 JUDGE BONOMY: It's an acronym, though, that we've heard referred
21 to in this case as we go along as a special anti-terrorist unit, and here
22 we have it translated that way in this document. So you can imagine why
23 our eyes light up when these things occur. So can we be clear about the
24 meaning of "SAJ" and whether, in fact, it also includes a special
25 anti-terrorist unit.
1 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. General, could you please respond.
3 A. Among these units, in the category of independent army units,
4 there are no special anti-terrorist units. Such units existed in a
5 different operations group. In the corps of special units of the Army of
6 Yugoslavia. But special units were within corps.
7 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, may I proceed?
8 JUDGE BONOMY: You may proceed, but you can take it I, at the
9 moment, am not clear about the position.
10 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, the translation is
11 wrong. This is an official translation of the CLSS, and it is wrong. I
12 know that there was quite a bit of testimony here. There were witnesses
13 who said that they belonged to the SAJ of the MUP of Serbia; whereas,
14 these are military units. I think that the witness explained that. If
15 necessary, we can deal with it once again.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do apologise. If necessary, and
17 if not too late we can submit a list of these units so that you can see
18 their structure do it again. I mentioned what units they are.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: I follow what you're saying. But you see, you've
20 also said just now that such units - that's anti-terrorist units - existed
21 in a different operations group. Now, that doesn't mean anything to me
22 either as a layman. So what is the different operations group that you're
23 referring to? Are you referring to the MUP or are you referring to part
24 of the VJ?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am referring to an operations
1 group that existed in the Army of Yugoslavia under the name of the Corps
2 of Special Units of the Army of Yugoslavia.
3 Within it was a concentration of special units of the Army of
4 Yugoslavia. That is a unit at corps level. However, this unit was at the
5 level of the army and it was not within the 3rd Army.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
7 Mr. Aleksic.
8 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Could we please call up in e-court 4D147.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: I think I should reflect on the record that
11 Mr. Milutinovic is now present in court.
12 Please continue.
13 [The accused Milutinovic entered court]
14 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. General, please look at this document and tell us whether you
16 recognise it.
17 A. Yes. This document is an order of the commander of the 3rd Army,
18 Dusan Samardzic, dated the 11th of January, 1999. By then I had already
19 assumed my duties as Chief of Staff and I am aware of this order that has
20 to do with the freeing of our soldiers that had been kidnapped and
21 captured by Siptar terrorists.
22 What the commander is asking for here now is precisely a special
23 unit that is not within his composition, and that is the combat group of
24 the 63rd Airborne Brigade that would, together with the units of the
25 Pristina Corps, set our soldiers free. Operation Mac, Sword.
1 Q. Thank you, General.
2 Could we please call up in e-court 4D329.
3 General, do you recognise this document?
4 A. Yes. This is a document of the commander of the 3rd Army,
5 General Pavkovic. A few days before the aggression started. Four days
6 before the aggression started.
7 This is a warning to all units, and it contains two important
8 tasks: One is the prevention of any actions that could be interpreted as
9 a provocation on our side vis-a-vis units in the area of Macedonia. Those
10 were units that were being concentrated there from the month of January
12 The other tasks given are to take all measures to prevent sabotage
13 and terrorist groups from being infiltrated from Albania and Macedonia.
14 And to take other measures so that if bombing were to start, the
15 units would sustain minimum losses and keep their combat equipment.
16 Q. Thank you, General.
17 Could we please call up in e-court 4D133.
18 General, do you recognise this document?
19 A. This is an order of General Pavkovic, commander of the 3rd Army,
20 two days after the aggression started.
21 Important measures are being ordered to commanders to carry out
22 the basic task, and that is to keep their combat equipment from
23 airstrikes, from the effect of airstrikes, and, of course, the morale of
24 the units; and to carry out the basic task, and that is the defence of the
25 territory and the sovereignty of the country, starting from the border
2 The commanders are called upon to have cooperation with the MUP
3 and the units of the military territorial organs.
4 In number 4, since the problem of a possible landing was being
5 dealt with from January onwards, the commander is saying that if landings
6 were to start, forces should -- those forces should be blocked and
7 smashed, along with other forces that we had planned for such actions
8 earlier on. The commander is expressing his hope that the state
9 leadership will, of course, through diplomatic and political means resolve
10 the aggression that took place.
11 Q. Thank you, General.
12 Could we please call up in e-court 4D -- no, sorry, P1454.
13 General, can you recognise this document?
14 A. The essence of this order of the 3rd Army commander is in taking
15 measures. In view of the fact that the personnel levels of the 1st Army
16 went up, there were certain negative consequences. There were certain
17 cases that had to be eliminated, especially against individuals and groups
18 that are engaged in looting and crime. Also, units that had not dealt
19 with their material reserves should do so as quickly as possible, because
20 the bombing is increasing in intensity. Also, since -- although we sent
21 several orders and documents from January onwards on the observation --
22 respect for international laws of war, again what is being focused is the
23 importance of observing international laws of war.
24 Q. Thank you, General.
25 Could we please call up 4D198 now, please.
1 General, this is a rather extensive document. It's two pages
2 long. Could you please read page 1 carefully and then we're going to call
3 up page 2.
4 A. Could I have the Serbian translation, because what I see is the
6 May I give my comments on page 1 first of this order?
7 Q. Yes. Yes, please go ahead.
8 A. Certain weaknesses were established here in some units, and the
9 commander is ordering the elimination of these shortcomings and he is
10 basically giving instructions as to how some matters are to be resolved;
11 like the positions that we had to place. So there are some paragraphs
12 that are instructions even at tactical level so that subordinate
13 commanders could carry this out properly. Also, discipline is called for,
14 camouflage discipline. And also in the 257th Armoured Brigade in the
15 village of Dragobilj what is ordered is the dispersion of this equipment
16 so that they should not be destroyed by airstrikes. Also, constant
17 monitoring in the air spaces required. There have been certain
18 shortcomings in the 175th Infantry Brigade and parts of the 252nd, and
19 what is being mentioned is that is there would be serious consequences.
20 Q. Thank you, General.
21 Could we look at page 2 of the document.
22 A. These are measures listed in several bullet points, several
23 paragraphs, indicating the need to strengthen the wartime regime of
24 security in units by checking vehicles and persons, and the commander also
25 decided that military territorial units should be subordinated to corps
1 commanders for better efficiency.
2 There is a continued insistence on discipline and prevention of
3 all negative incidents, especially concerning individuals that have been
4 caught stealing, setting fire to certain buildings or structures, et
6 Also imposed is a strengthening of measures of anti-air defence
7 and better communications. In point 19, since a number of conscripts or
8 reserve personnel did not respond to call-up, it is said that measures
9 must be taken to bring them into units.
10 Paragraph 20 deals with matters of logistics, especially in --
11 concerning equipment that was deficient, in short supply, such as helmets,
12 clothing, and footwear.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stojimirovic, we can actually read for
14 ourselves what's in the -- the document, but could you help me with one
15 matter. What gave the commander authority to order the re-subordination
16 of military territorial units?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Because military territorial units
18 are units within the organisational structure of the 3rd Army. They are
19 establishment units, and it is the right of the commander, just as he can
20 re-subordinate one brigade from the Nis Corps to the Pristina Corps, he is
21 also able to re-subordinate these units to commanders.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
23 Mr. Aleksic.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As far as volunteers are concerned.
25 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation].
1 Q. Yes. Yes. Paragraph 11.
2 A. We were dealing with the matter of volunteers as of April. The
3 commander insists they should be removed from units and returned to the
4 centre in Nis; they should be demobilised and sent back. Such individuals
5 were not needed in our army and they could only create problems.
6 Q. Thank you, General.
7 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] I have no further questions for this
8 witness, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Aleksic.
10 Mr. Fila.
11 Cross-examination by Mr. Fila:
12 Q. [Interpretation] General, my name is Toma Fila, I appear here for
13 Nikola Sainovic. I have a few questions, all of them to do with the chain
14 of command.
15 In paragraph 4, you said that due to growing attacks by terrorist
16 gangs, two units from your Corps for Special Units were transferred by you
17 in order to strengthen the forces of the 3rd Army. Who was in command of
18 these units?
19 A. That order for two combat groups from the Corps of Special Units
20 of the Army of Yugoslavia to be re-subordinated to the command of the 3rd
21 Army was issued in end May 1998 by the Chief of General Staff of the VJ,
22 General Perisic, who was my immediate superior, and the Corps of Special
23 Units was directly under his command.
24 Q. And you commanded that Corps of Special Units, as far as I can see
25 from paragraph 8, all the way up to end 1998; is that correct?
1 A. A clarification is called for here. The order of the Chief of
2 General Staff was to the effect that two combat groups from the 72nd and
3 63rd Brigade, a total strength of 350 men, were attached to the 3rd Army
4 and placed in the command of General Samardzic. From that point on, it
5 was General Samardzic that was responsible for the use of those units.
6 They left the corps, and I was no longer responsible for them. Because of
7 the very difficult situation with securing the border facing Albania,
8 where we suffered great losses and great attacks, General Samardzic
9 re-subordinated these combat groups to the 3rd Corps and ordered that they
10 should be exclusively engaged in securing the state border, and that's
11 what they did from June until the end of August, when they were returned
12 to Belgrade.
13 Q. My question regarding your command of that unit is this: Did you
14 have any problems in the chain of command? Did anybody interfere from
15 outside? Yes or no?
16 A. No.
17 Q. In paragraph 7 you say that in the course of August you were
18 present during the inspection and touring of the units by the General
19 Staff, headed by General Perisic, and you said that the Minister of
20 Defence, Mr. Pavle Bulatovic, was also present during that inspection.
21 In the course of that inspection or as a result of that
22 inspection, did General Perisic tell you or Mr. Bulatovic anything about
23 any problems concerning disruption of the chained command -- chain of
24 command or any interference?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Paragraph 9 -- I'm sorry, 8. You say that in January 1999 you
2 became Chief of Staff of the 3rd Army, replacing General Simic, who was
3 already a witness here.
4 During the transition of duties from General Simic, did
5 General Simic tell you there was any disruption in the chain of command of
6 the VJ or anything to that effect?
7 A. I took over the duties from General Simic in the presence of
8 General Samardzic, and it was said that the chain of command in the 3rd
9 Army operated properly and there were no problems.
10 Q. In paragraph 10 you explained that the command of the 3rd Army had
11 in its organisation six specialised organs, and you enumerated them.
12 In the organisation of the 3rd Army, as you described it and as
13 you understood it, for its proper functioning was it organised
14 sufficiently well or was it necessary for some civilians or outsiders to
16 A. The organisation of the 3rd Army command was strengthened and
17 governed by the orders of the General Staff and it was able to function
18 properly within the Army of Yugoslavia. There was no legal need or
19 possibility for anyone to enter the 3rd Army command and start commanding.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila, you say that the six specialised organs
21 are set out there. Can you identify what the six are from the statement?
22 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] That is in paragraph 10, Your Honour,
23 and then paragraphs 11, 12, and further below in the statement the witness
24 explains these organs one by one.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I couldn't count six, and that's why I'm
1 asking the question. You have your statement -- do you have your
2 statement in -- in front of you?
3 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. Sorry. Could you look, please, at paragraph
5 10, and you'll see there the -- the reference to "six specialised organs."
6 And if you look at 11, you'll see that one was the information and
7 moral guidance centre -- sector; one was the legal affairs section.
8 And if you look at 12, the third one is the personnel section and
9 the fourth one is the security department.
10 Now, what are the fifth and sixth special units?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You have enumerated five. Five. The
12 sixth one is the staff, and I represent the staff.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: I don't think I did mention five. Information and
14 moral guidance is one; legal affairs is two; third is personnel; and
15 fourth is security. And you've now told us a fifth one is staff or
16 operations, I think.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And assistant for logistics. The
18 organ for logistics.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the second one. Right.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] General Mladenovic was chief of the
22 JUDGE BONOMY: And when you say "staff," you -- effectively that's
23 the operations section; is that correct?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "Staff" is a broader concept from
25 the operations sector. The staff also has special -- specialised units,
1 organs that are responsible for various duties. We have an organ for
2 operations and training; then the intelligence; then the organ for
3 branches of service; another organ is for mobilisation and cooperation
4 with military territorial commands.
5 So the staff itself is divided into a number of units.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
7 Sorry, Mr. Fila. I interrupted you.
8 MR. FILA: [Interpretation]
9 Q. In paragraph 19 you say: "As commander of the VJ special unit
10 corps, I continuously monitored the security situation from May 1998."
11 And you speak about anti-terrorist operation, and so on.
12 Since you were monitoring the security situation in that very
13 important period, May 1998 until the agreement between Holbrooke and
14 Milosevic, did you notice any anomalies in the chain of command?
15 A. We monitored this situation even before the said units were sent
16 to the 3rd Army. We followed the intelligence and the operative
17 information available. When they came to the 3rd Army, that is, the
18 Pristina Corps, we also received relevant information. Together with
19 General Samardzic, I dealt with all the issues of receiving and accepting
20 these units into the Pristina Corps. Throughout the subsequent time,
21 since I commanded these units in the border belt, most of the time I was
22 at the forward command post with General Lazarevic. I know for a fact that
23 when they were not in the field - we were in the same room - that
24 General Lazarevic received orders from General Pavkovic. Occasionally
25 General Simic called from the forward command post of the 3rd Army, and
1 sometimes General Samardzic called from Nis or from the forward command
2 post. In those 20 days, therefore, nobody contacted General Lazarevic.
3 And whenever General Lazarevic invited his subordinated commanders, he
4 personally issued orders to them from his staff.
5 Also, on the forward command post of the 3rd Army, which I visited
6 twice on my way to or back from Belgrade, there were always either
7 General Simic or army commander General Samardzic, General Mladenovic, and
8 a group of high-ranking staff officers.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila, it may be me -- it may be my
10 misunderstanding again, but your question was about the period May till
11 October. Is that right? And is that what the witness -- is that what the
12 witness has been dealing with?
13 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Yes, the witness answered, but it's not
14 in the record that he sometimes called the General Samardzic and nobody
15 called Lazarevic except Samardzic and occasionally Simic.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: When did Lazarevic take over the Pristina Corps?
17 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] We're talking about the forward command
18 post, when the Chief of Staff was in Djakovica, and that's the forward
19 command post, Your Honours.
20 [Trial Chamber confers]
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In 1998 the corps commander was
22 General Pavkovic.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
24 MR. FILA: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Let us move on to paragraph 47, then. Can this be shown to the
1 witness if he doesn't have a copy.
2 A. I don't see it yet.
3 Q. Paragraph 47 is very important.
4 In this paragraph, as we see, you talk about the commander of the
5 3rd Army, that is, General Pavkovic, and the -- down the chain of command.
6 I want to ask you something else. We have heard questions during this
7 trial, which has gone on for a long time, about the possible existence of
8 a parallel chain of command and that the chain of command that goes from
9 the 3rd Army up. As Chief of Staff in wartime, did you notice anything of
10 the sort and did -- was anything of the sort able to exist?
11 A. I'm not aware of it, but technically speaking through the combat
12 reports that emanated from the 3rd Army, those reports had to go all the
13 way up to the Supreme Command and on to the President, who commanded the
15 Q. This President who commanded the army, that was Slobodan Milosevic
16 in wartime. Did the President have any parallel chain of command
17 involving officers of the JNA?
18 A. Not that I am aware of.
19 Q. I meant the VJ, not the JNA.
20 A. I'm not aware of that.
21 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. That would be
23 JUDGE BONOMY: [Microphone not activated]
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
25 Questioned by the Court:
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stojimirovic, I want to go back a little to the
2 answer you gave about monitoring the situation during the period of May
3 until October 1998, and you talked about the transfer of the two
4 specialist units to the 3rd Army. And then you said: "Throughout the
5 subsequent time, since I commanded these units in the border belt, most of
6 the time I was at the forward command post with General Lazarevic."
7 So what -- what period precisely are you talking about there?
8 A. The 1st Combat Group of the 72nd Brigade, I think, became part of
9 the 3rd Army on the 9th of June; and the 2nd Combat Group of the 63rd
10 Airborne Brigade, towards the end of June, beginning of July. Both combat
11 groups got out of the composition of the 3rd Army on the 30th of August.
12 So in June, July, and August the units were there and I, with
13 interruptions, spent about 20 days. It was the Chief of Staff of the
14 corps who was with the units for the rest of the time.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
16 Mr. Sepenuk.
17 MR. SEPENUK: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Cross-examination by Mr. Sepenuk:
19 Q. Good morning, General. I'm Norman Sepenuk, an attorney for
20 General Ojdanic --
21 A. Good morning.
22 Q. And I have very few brief questions for you.
23 I'd like you to look on the screen at Exhibit P1725.
24 And you're looking at that now, sir?
25 A. K0356751, is that the document you're referring to?
1 Q. What's that? Say it again? Yes. Yes, it is.
2 A. K0 -- all right.
3 Q. Yes, that's the document, sir.
4 And what it is is a document dated 4 June 1999 from the commander
5 of the 3rd Army to the Supreme Command Staff, and the subject matter is,
6 as you'll note there, a request to solve the problems that affect the
7 combat readiness of the Pristina Corps.
8 Do you see that?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And then there are very -- various matters listed after that.
11 And at the end of the document, it says - if you could scroll down
12 to the very end of this document - a little bit further. Keep going. No,
13 keep going, going further down. Yeah, that's it.
14 And at the bottom, it says: "A telegram can be sent to Chief of
15 Staff" -- and then it gives your name, Major General Ljubisa Stojimirovic.
16 Correct? Do you see that?
17 A. "Chief of Staff." Yes.
18 Q. Okay.
19 A. I see that, yes.
20 Q. Okay. My question simply is: Do you recall seeing this document
22 A. Is this from the 4th of June, this document.
23 Q. Yes, that's right.
24 A. The 4th of June.
25 Q. That's correct.
1 A. That's the date, the 4th of June.
2 Q. Yes. I'm asking you whether you recall seeing this document
3 before you see it now.
4 A. I'm not sure. I cannot confirm having seen this document, since
5 it relates to the beginning of June. I am not sure that I saw this
7 Q. Thank you, sir.
8 MR. SEPENUK: That's all I have.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Sepenuk, I can't see all of it at the moment.
10 It's from whom to whom?
11 MR. SEPENUK: It's from the -- it's from the commander of the 3rd
12 Army to the Supreme Command Staff.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: In -- in what capacity would you expect to have
14 seen this document before?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do not remember having verified
16 the document so that it could be sent as a telegram. I signed a large
17 number of documents because a telegram cannot be sent without the
18 signature of one of the authorised officials who have the right to sign
19 this kind of document. I don't remember having signed this. It's
20 possible that I did, though, but there was a lot of work involved. It was
21 already the beginning of June and there was a lot of work that had to do
22 with the withdrawal of the army from Kosovo, and I'm not sure.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Have we looked at the area of where the signature
24 should be?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know why there is no
1 signature here.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
3 MR. SEPENUK: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: You'll now be cross-examined by Mr. Stamp for the
6 Mr. Stamp.
7 Oh, sorry, someone else wished to cross-examine?
8 MR. LUKIC: Actually, we don't have any questions for this
9 witness, Your Honour, so you were right.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Not often, but it's reassuring.
11 Yes, you'll now be cross-examined by Mr. Stamp for the
13 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
14 Cross-examination by Mr. Stamp:
15 Q. Good morning, General.
16 A. Good morning.
17 Q. During the war, where were you mainly located? Which post were
18 you at?
19 A. From the beginning of the aggression -- from the beginning of the
20 aggression until the 7th or 8th of June, with part of the command of the
21 3rd Army I was in the facilities of the 3rd Army command; that is to say,
22 in certain facilities apart from those that were destroyed. From the 24th
23 until the 8th of June.
24 From the 8th of June until the 19th of June, I was in Pristina,
25 and I was given the task to be in charge of the relocation of the forces
1 of the Army of Yugoslavia from Kosovo and Metohija; that is to say, in Nis
2 and Pristina, while other locations depended on the tasks and tours of
3 units and commands.
4 Q. Where was the 3rd Army command located? During 24th March to
5 early June?
6 A. The command from the 3rd Army from the 24th of March until the
7 beginning of July was in different facilities of the Nis garrison, and
8 part of the command, headed by the commander, General Pavkovic, and about
9 15 staff officers and other officers of the command were at the forward
10 command post in the area of Pristina. This distance is about 120
12 Q. So you with the main body of the command staff was in -- was in
13 Nis and General Pavkovic, with some others of the command staff, were at
14 the forward command post in Pristina. Is that -- is that a correct
16 A. All officers who were with me in Nis and officers who were with
17 General Pavkovic at the forward command post are officers from the command
18 of the 3rd Army. All of them belong to the command of the 3rd Army.
19 However, depending on the decisions of the commanders and the tasks
20 provided, a number of officers made it possible for the commander to work
21 at the forward command post; whereas, the remaining number of officers
22 remained with me in Nis with General Mladenovic, who testified yesterday,
23 who was another assistant commander, who dealt with logistics. So the
24 chief of the security organ was in Nis, the assistant for logistics, the
25 assistant commander for legal affairs, the assistant commander for
1 personnel affairs, and the commander was always accompanied by
2 Colonel Starcevic, the assistant commander for information and morale.
3 Q. Thank you, General. That was perhaps a little bit more detail
4 than I was asking for. If you confine your answers to just a precise
5 response, we'll be over very quickly, I assure you.
6 What was the purpose of setting up a forward command post for the
7 commander in Pristina?
8 A. Our instructions for the work of commands and staffs, which is
9 compulsory for our army as well as corresponding combat rules, make it
10 possible for the commander and make it incumbent upon the commander to be
11 in the spot where it will probably be the most difficult during combat
12 actions; that is to say, where the thrust of enemy activity is expected
13 and the most intensive activity.
14 The commander is there so that he could commander the unit, so
15 that he could be closer to the unit. So it's also a question of morale as
16 well, because the soldiers like it if the commander is as close as
17 possible to them.
18 Q. Just to summarise -- just to summarise what you said. It enabled
19 the commander to have more direct contact and monitoring possibilities for
20 the troops at the focal point in Kosovo.
21 A. Precisely.
22 Q. Who was responsible or at which command post was the preparation
23 of combat reports, the normal combat reports that were sent up to the
24 Supreme Command Staff, done?
25 I think if you -- I think your statement at paragraph 48 indicates
1 that it was at Nis.
2 A. I understand. Yes, the combat reports that were submitted every
3 day to the Supreme Command Staff were written in Nis.
4 Q. Was it part of your responsibility to see that the -- these combat
5 reports were professionally and accurately created or done?
6 A. Yes. Because they had to contain important information that we
7 received from corps, other units, and assistant commanders who were with
8 me in Nis.
9 Q. We have, General - and perhaps you could bring up P938 - we have
10 in evidence the minutes of meetings of the collegium of the General Staff
11 of the Yugoslav Army in which certain complaints are made about the
12 quality of the reporting from the 3rd Army in February and March 1999
13 before the war. Did you ever in this period, February/March 1999, while
14 you were Chief of Staff, receive any complaints or information indicating
15 that the Supreme Command was not satisfied with information it was getting
16 in the reports coming from the 3rd Army?
17 A. First of all, I don't remember this document and I'm not aware of
18 its content, this document dated the 18th of March; that is to say, on the
19 eve of the aggression. I'm not aware of the content of this document.
20 Q. Sorry --
21 A. And --
22 Q. I was just asking for the document to be brought up, to save time.
23 I'm not asking about the document yet.
24 I'm just asking if you ever received an inkling, any information
25 or complaint that the Supreme Command was at that time, in February and
1 March, it was at the General Staff, were dissatisfied with the quality and
2 accuracy of reporting coming from the 3rd Army.
3 A. I do not remember specifically references to the 3rd Army, but I
4 think that a document came from the Supreme Command Staff that made it
5 incumbent upon the commands of all groups that all reports be done in a
6 timely fashion and contained important information. But I think that this
7 pertained to all units of the Army of Yugoslavia.
8 Q. All right. Let's -- let's have a look at the document in front of
10 I represent to you that this is a -- a record of a meeting of the
11 collegium of the General Staff of the VJ of the 18th of March. And if we
12 could look at page 11. And this, I think, is on page 10 in B/C/S. The
13 third paragraph on the bottom on page 11 in the English, which is the mid
14 paragraph in the B/C/S. This is Colonel General Dimitrijevic speaking.
15 And he's saying that: "The theory that the MUP and the army are
16 conducting mopping-up operations in the territory are exceptionally
17 widespread. Every morning I read very carefully and in detail, great
18 detail, the Pristina Corps combat reports, and there was not a single case
19 where we were conducting something; instead, they are always attack us and
20 we return fire."
21 He goes on to say: "I think that you, more than anyone else" --
22 that is, the Chief of Staff -- "show know the truth. Something is not
23 right here."
24 And perhaps if we could go on further at page -- I'm going to ask
25 you some questions about this. Page 21 of the English, in the middle of
1 the page, page 21, he make it is same complaint. I'm afraid I don't have
2 the -- the B/C/S, the corresponding B/C/S page. So I'll just read it.
3 Speaking to the General Staff, General -- speaking to the
4 collegium, General Dimitrijevic says: "You need to know that what is
5 really going on. You need to know what is really going on, because
6 reports from the Pristina Corps command are all textbook,
7 attacked-returned, attacked-returned, et cetera. I think that to say the
8 least, that is not correct behaviour towards you as Chief of General
10 And it -- it goes on and on in this collegium, but the final part
11 I want to show you is at page 25, which is on page 23 in the B/C/S, the
12 last paragraph in English.
13 A. Could I please see this enlarged a bit, because the translation
14 doesn't seem to be functioning. Could I please see the Serbian
15 translation. I have someone speaking about certain problems and then in
16 other places I do not see anything but these long very general texts. I
17 don't know which paragraphs to focus on.
18 Q. Read that middle paragraph in front of you. The first paragraph
19 that starts --
20 A. "All major decisions concerning ... "
21 Q. You need not read it aloud, but this is --
22 A. All right.
23 Q. -- General Ojdanic speaking.
24 A. "Until this arrival of the commander of the 3rd Army." Is that
25 what you're referring to?
1 Q. Yes.
2 A. "Up until this arrival of the commander of the 3rd Army, OSP
3 sector, this is a task in consultation -- you should write an order to all
4 concerning the planning of engagement of our officers of the Pristina
5 Corps and army command in carrying out group and individual" --
6 Q. I'm speaking about the preceding paragraph in B/C/S.
7 A. The preceding one is: "All major decisions." Is that the one?
8 Q. Yes.
9 A. "All major decisions regarding the use of the army, in accordance
10 with the authorisation from the competent organ, that is to say, the
11 president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, who commands in army in
12 peace and in war. I am not talking about details. It is obvious that
13 something here is not right. And in -- and I will call and talk to the
14 3rd Army command about that, and I also think that should be followed by
15 him coming here so that we can sit down and talk properly on this
17 Q. Thanks.
18 A. So --
19 Q. Thanks. You could stop there.
20 Do you know if the Chief of General Staff, General Ojdanic,
21 contacted General Pavkovic about this failure in reporting from the 3rd
23 A. Sir, this is a record from the 18th of March, and I do not know
24 about any problems having existed in subordination in command between
25 General Ojdanic and General Pavkovic. Even more so, because
1 General Ojdanic on the 3rd and 4th of March - that is to say, only 15 days
2 prior to this collegium meeting - toured the Pristina Corps, all brigades,
3 and border units. Later on we received an order of General Ojdanic - I
4 think it was about the 16th of March - of very high quality, very proper,
5 and he made it incumbent upon the 3rd Army and the General Staff to raise
6 the combat readiness of the 3rd Army.
7 I'm not familiar with this. Especially since this is the first
8 time I see this document. This document merits a comprehensive analysis.
9 Q. Well, I'm just focusing on one aspect of it.
10 So you do not know if General Pavkovic had to prepare or to report
11 on any special occasion in respect to the report. You don't know that.
12 That's your answer?
13 A. I know that General Pavkovic was duty-bound to report in the
14 beginning of April in respect of the defence of the country from the NATO
15 aggression on the basis of the directive from General Ojdanic. He went to
16 Belgrade then to report to General Ojdanic about his decision.
17 Q. So your answer to my last question is, no, you don't know about --
18 A. No. You mean about the positions in this transcript that we read
19 out? No, I don't know about that. This conflict that is pointed out here
20 is something that I'm not aware of.
21 Q. In your statement at paragraph 12 to 13 - and we are moving on
22 slightly - you refer to -- perhaps it will be easier if I could just hand
23 out to the usher, just hand to you a copy of your statement, just for easy
25 A. 12 and 13?
1 Q. You don't really need to read it if you remember what I'm asking
2 about. You refer in one paragraph to the security department and in the
3 other one to the security sector.
4 At paragraphs -- let me be sure to see specifically what you said.
5 In paragraph 12 you said the security department carried out proper
6 measures to protect units from enemy activity and self-protection measures
7 from units -- in units.
8 And in paragraph 13, you said: "The chief of the security section
9 was a professional organ for combat readiness and the use of military
10 police units."
11 Was there a difference between the security sector and the
12 security department in the 3rd Army?
13 A. In the 3rd Army, like in other all armies, there is the chief of
14 the security organ. That's a colonel. And he is one of the assistant
15 commanders for security matters, the professional organ for that. Inter
16 alia the security organ is responsible for the proper use of units of the
17 military police for their combat readiness, their level of training,
18 equipment, and the -- and he makes proposals to the commander as to the
19 type of tasks that these units should be used for.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: This may be a language question. If you could
21 concentrate on the particular point that's being asked. In paragraph 12,
22 the English translation of what you said was "the security department
23 carried out appropriate measures." But the first line of the next
24 paragraph says "the chief of the security section." Now, are both of
25 these a reference to the same organ, or is there a difference between the
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's the same organ. Obviously a
3 typing mistake was made, a typing error.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
5 Now, we have to have a break at this stage.
6 I'm sorry, Mr. Stamp.
7 MR. STAMP: I'm sorry. I -- perhaps I didn't get the timing
8 right, but I thought with the extended sitting today --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Oh, sorry. You're absolutely right. It is my
10 mistake. Please continue. Yep.
11 MR. STAMP: Okay. Thank you, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry. Sorry.
13 MR. STAMP:
14 Q. So who was the head of the security section of the security
15 department in the Pristina -- in the 3rd Army in 1999, do you know of?
16 A. Colonel Antic.
17 Q. I see at paragraph 46 of your statement, in discussing reports
18 generally, you said that apart from the regular combat reports that were
19 sent by the 3rd Army, specialised sections or specialised functional lines
20 would also send their reports up to the Supreme Command Staff or to their
21 specialised superiors in Belgrade, and one of those specialised areas was
23 So can I take it from this that the security sector would also be
24 sending their specialised reports up to the security administration
25 headquarters for the whole VJ in Belgrade?
1 A. The head of the security organ had the right to send special
2 reports to the chief of the security administration of the General Staff
3 of the Army of Yugoslavia.
4 Q. Well --
5 A. Please. But not only he. Other assistant commanders could also
6 send separate reports. For example, General Mladenovic, who testified
7 yesterday. With regard to logistics matters, he could also acquaint
8 General Pantelic in greater detail with a particular problem in that area.
9 Q. Yes. But I wanted to know if -- of your own knowledge, and I'm
10 just focusing on security for the time being, that is, the department in
11 charge of the military police. Of your knowledge, do you know that they
12 were sending regular reports up the specialised line to the security
13 administration for the VJ in Belgrade?
14 A. I did not check whether they were sending reports every day.
15 Perhaps there were some days when it was unnecessary for them to send
16 their own separate reports. Perhaps what was part of the combat report
17 was sufficient from Colonel Antic. As for their rights, they could send a
18 special separate report every day.
19 Q. Well, did you ever see a single report that they - that is, at the
20 security centre - sent up to the security administration in Belgrade?
21 A. I did not. That is not customary practice.
22 Q. Did the security sector have to -- was there a requirement that
23 they send reports for you to use in compiling your combat report that you
24 sent up to the General Staff or the Supreme Command Staff in Belgrade?
25 A. The head of the security organ, Colonel Antic, every day for the
1 combat report that was sent to the Supreme Command Staff, he took part in
2 the elaboration of that part of the combat report that he was responsible
3 for. That is always in the section entitled "Security."
4 Q. And in paragraph 43 of your statement, you also speak about the
5 setting up of the military courts. Were -- were they -- were the command
6 of the military courts required to supply to you information for the
7 purpose of preparing your regular combat reports that you sent up?
8 A. They submitted information primarily from the point of view of
9 quantity on the number of investigations started. But as for more
10 detailed information about the individuals involved and the nature of the
11 crimes involved, they submitted that to the military court in Belgrade.
12 I just wish to note that the courts were not within the
13 organisation of the 3rd Army and that they were not in the subordination
14 of command of the 3rd Army commander. They were independent and they
15 worked in accordance with federal laws.
16 Q. So when it came to crimes -- and before I ask the question, I just
17 explain to you that having regard to what you said about the setting up of
18 the military courts, the speedy setting up of the military courts at
19 paragraph 42 of your statement - and that was because of concerns for
20 questions of international humanitarian law being the primary purpose -
21 when it came to reporting crimes that might well be breaches of
22 international humanitarian law, there were at least four -- at least three
23 lines of reporting independent of each other that should have gone up from
24 the 3rd Army to army headquarters in Belgrade: The security section in
25 charge of the military police for the investigations, the military courts
1 in charge of the prosecutions, and the information that you'd get that
2 you'd send up in your regular combat reports. And -- that's correct?
3 A. Yes, that is correct.
4 Q. And General Vasiljevic said that crimes ought to have been
5 reported up the chain of command. Would you agree with that, that serious
6 crimes and what was being done about them ought to have been reported up
7 the chain of command? Would you agree with that?
8 A. I am not aware of this information provided by General Vasiljevic
9 on crimes for which the military organisation would be responsible and
10 that they had to report about that; however, all commanders, if they were
11 to learn that within their units there had been crimes committed, they
12 were duty-bound to report about that. What was reported were incidents
13 that occurred and that were reported in combat reports, and later they
14 were processed. I don't know what General Vasiljevic meant in that
15 particular information, what crimes and who was supposed to report on
17 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm sorry to intervene here. Just to ask whether
18 these reports about the crimes were -- were verified, because we have the
19 general speaking that they ought to be reported. Were they actually
20 reported, or things were done just in a mechanical way? Did anybody
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All crimes that a commanding officer
23 or a commander would learn of -- well, he would take measures to have
24 evidence collected on that crime: The place where it was committed, who
25 was involved, et cetera. Then the investigation organs of the military
1 police collected material evidence and brought into custody the soldier or
2 officer involved, handed him over to an investigative judge, and later on
3 a decision was made to start criminal proceedings and trials. During the
4 two and a half months of the aggression, we had 280 members of the army
5 sentenced by final judgements pertaining to looting, rapes, killings,
6 including when a soldier kills another soldier, one of our soldiers.
7 There were cases like that too, but the crime was murder.
8 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Whenever the crime was reported, was it register
9 somewhere -- registered somewhere and did you then check what was the fate
10 of that and how it moved?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I personally was not in charge of
12 checking the type of crime and the number of crimes committed. That was
13 done by courts. Once the final judgement was passed, there were records
14 of that and I assume that General Gojovic spoke about that and Colonel
15 Radosavljevic. However, the command was duty-bound to report on every
16 crime and to collect material evidence to hand over to the courts the
17 perpetrators. All the rest is in the hands of the courts.
18 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Did somebody actually check and verify the
19 statistics and the -- the facts about registration and whether all crimes
20 were being registered and they were being reported? I mean, that's the
21 real question.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As for reported crimes and as for
23 final judgements, there is a structured document, the number of killings,
24 rapes, arsons, et cetera; however, it is certain that for certain crimes
25 there weren't any final judgements. Once the state of war was over, a
1 number of suspects were handed over to civilian courts, and civilian
2 courts continued the trials; whereas, the military courts continued trying
3 commissioned and non-commissioned officers who remained in professional
4 service in the army. That is to say, after the state of war was over,
5 trials continued for suspects -- for persons suspected of having committed
6 war crimes.
7 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Do you, General, really believe that all crimes
8 which is were committed were reported? Do you believe that? Because it's
9 your testimony.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I personally cannot assert that we
11 uncovered all the crimes committed, all the individuals involved. Some
12 certainly remained in Kosovo and Metohija too. But I'm talking about all
13 citizens now, all citizens who live there, not only members of the
15 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Thank you.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stojimirovic, I would like to go back to what
17 Mr. Stamp was asking you. He put to you that there were at least three
18 lines of reporting independent of each other that should have gone up from
19 the 3rd Army to army headquarters in Belgrade, and he identified these as
20 the security section or department in charge of the military police for
21 investigations, the military courts in charge of the prosecutions, and the
22 information that you'd get that you'd send up in your regular combat
24 And you agreed with that. You said, "That's correct." And not
25 satisfied with that, for some reason, Mr. Stamp then said something about
1 what General Vasiljevic had said here, that crimes ought to have been
2 reported up the chain of command. Now, that's the same question, but your
3 answer to that's completely different from the answer you gave to the
4 earlier question. You then said: "I'm not aware of the information
5 provided by Vasiljevic," which is fair enough. And then you said, "All
6 commanders, if they were to learn that within their units there had been
7 crimes committed, they duty-bound to report about that. What was reported
8 were incidents that occurred and that were reported in combat reports and
9 later they were processed. I don't know what General Vasiljevic meant in
10 that particular information, what crimes, and who was supposed to report
11 on that."
12 Now, what is the position? Do you accept that there were three
13 ways in which crimes ought to have been reported up the chain of command,
14 or are you -- are you saying something else?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The basic line of reporting is
16 reporting along the chain of command through combat reports. The command
17 of the 3rd Army to the Supreme Command Staff. That is the basic line of
19 The other two lines reported in greater detail about certain
20 cases, such as courts, such as security organs. However, the basic line,
21 everything that the commanders knew had happened in their zones and that
22 was unlawful, they reported that. What they could not establish or what
23 they did not know until the withdrawal of the army could not have been
24 reported on.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I entirely understand that, but the question wasn't
1 about -- at that stage, the questions weren't about what had happened but
2 what should have happened, which is a very important issue for us, apart
3 from the actual events on the ground.
4 Mr. Stamp, is this a suitable time to interrupt, or do you want to
5 going on a little longer for some reason?
6 MR. STAMP: This is a convenient time.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stojimirovic, we need a break at this stage for
8 various reasons. That will be for about half an hour. Could you go with
9 the usher meanwhile and leave the courtroom for a moment.
10 [The witness stands down]
11 JUDGE BONOMY: And we will resume at 20 minutes past 11.00.
12 --- Recess taken at 10.48 a.m.
13 --- On resuming at 11.21 a.m.
14 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
15 [The witness entered court]
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
17 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
18 Q. At -- in your report, you mentioned significant tours and
19 inspections, paragraph 67, particular. Were you aware of a tour or
20 inspection conducted by General Farkas on 5th/6th of May, 1999? Of the
21 3rd Army positioned in Kosovo.
22 A. I did not see General Farkas at the time myself, and he did not
23 stop by the 3rd Army command on his way to the Pristina Corps, nor do I
24 have any information about the inspection he completed.
25 Q. I understand. But, sir, I take it that you were aware at the time
1 in 1999 that he attended for an inspection of the 3rd Corps, but you don't
2 know the details about it.
3 A. The command of the 3rd Army had information about all members of
4 the Supreme Command Staff who came to inspect the 3rd Army, and there are
5 reports on the subject.
6 Q. Well, the -- the evidence we have is that he reported back to the
7 Supreme Command Staff and to his representative at the Supreme Command
8 Staff, General Gajic, that serious crimes were being committed in the 3rd
9 Army area of operations in Kosovo, and that the reports coming up to
10 Belgrade to the security administration and to the staff of the Supreme
11 Command were irregular and were different and they were differences that
12 he noticed, important differences, between what was reported and what was
13 going on on the ground. Are you aware that that was General Farkas'
15 A. Do you have a copy of that report?
16 Q. No, I don't want to show you a document now. I'm just asking you
17 about what you know.
18 A. I don't know about that report of General Farkas. I'm not aware
19 of it.
20 Q. Do you know -- and maybe I should phrase it -- did you know at the
21 relevant time that as a result of General Farkas' report the commander of
22 the 3rd Army, General Pavkovic, was summoned to Belgrade to address the
23 issue of crimes that were committed in the 3rd Army area of operations in
24 Kosovo and the issue as to the reporting or failure of reporting of these
25 crimes up the chain? Do you know that?
1 A. I know that the General Pavkovic went several times to the Supreme
2 Command Staff, but I don't know that among other reasons he went there
3 because of the report by General Farkas.
4 Q. Do you know that as a result of that report General Pavkovic was
5 required to address the issue to the Supreme Command, and that's the
6 President of the Federal Republic?
7 A. All I know is that in the beginning of May, General Pavkovic and
8 General Lukic - and that was reported in the media - went to see the
9 President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. That was early May.
10 Q. No, I'm talking about the 18th of May -- 17th or 18th of May.
11 A. I have no information about that date.
12 Q. Well, you said in answer to me just now that you heard in the
13 media that General Pavkovic went to see the president of the republic. Do
14 you -- did you not receive information about General Pavkovic's official
15 meetings with the president of the republic in your capacity as his Chief
16 of Staff?
17 A. As for that visit of General Pavkovic and General Lukic to do the
18 reporting, I am not aware of any report from that meeting.
19 Q. Yes. I'm not sure if I understand what you just said, but what I
20 asked was whether or not you were made aware of meetings between -- or
21 meetings involving the command of the 3rd Army, General Pavkovic, and the
22 Supreme Command, President Milosevic, in your capacity as Chief of Staff
23 of the 3rd Army.
24 A. No, I did not receive such information.
25 Q. So you can't say how many times General Pavkovic went and met with
1 President Milosevic during the conflict?
2 A. I can't.
3 Q. Well, I'm not asking you now to speculate. I just imagine that as
4 the Chief of Staff you would know. Were there any reasons why you, as
5 Chief of Staff, would not know the business that General Pavkovic would
6 have, if any, to discuss with the president of the republic? Why wouldn't
7 you know these things in your capacity as the Chief of Staff? Simply.
8 That's the question.
9 A. It must have been the evaluation of the commander that some
10 details discussed in those meetings were in his own remit as the
11 commander, that he would issue appropriate orders, and he did not
12 familiarise me with the details of the discussion. Certain things had to
13 be done after those meetings, and it's possible that steps were taken
14 through appropriate orders.
15 Q. Are you aware that there was a tour or inspection conducted by
16 Generals Gajic and Vasiljevic in early June 1999? And this was a tour of
17 the security organs of the 3rd Army in Kosovo. Were you aware of that?
18 A. Yes, that's one of the types of inspection that was recorded, like
19 all the other inspections that were performed in the command of the 3rd
21 Q. And as you know about that tour in particular, were you aware that
22 that -- that the findings of Generals Gajic and Vasiljevic confirmed the
23 earlier findings of General Vasiljevic that there were serious weaknesses
24 in the reporting up of serious crimes from the 3rd Army in Kosovo?
25 A. I did not have such information, including those details, and as
1 far as I remember, nothing was ordered -- no orders were issued to change
2 anything in the reporting after that inspection.
3 Q. In respect to what was happening on the ground in Kosovo, could --
4 well, before I -- I do that, could you -- could you have a look at
5 paragraph 64 of your statement and clarify what --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you move, then, from -- from this subject,
7 can I be clear about one matter, please.
8 Mr. Stamp asked you about the tour of inspection that was made by
9 Farkas identifying inadequacies in the reporting of crimes, and you were
10 not aware of that.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was not.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: As chief of the General Staff of the 3rd Army,
13 should you have been made aware of that?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I personally think that there were
15 no particular problems that I was not aware of.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, that's a very clever answer, if I may say so.
17 It -- but it's not an answer to the question.
18 Should you, as Chief of the General Staff of the 3rd Army have
19 been made aware of inadequacies in the system, in the operation of the
20 system for reporting crimes committed within the 3rd Army's area of
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] General Farkas did not have the
23 obligation to inform me as Chief of Staff.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Please answer -- please answer my question.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Should I have been informed?
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. It's -- I've asked that twice. You should be
2 clear what the question is, unless there's some major problem with the
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was no need for me to be
6 JUDGE BONOMY: So your position here on oath is that the Chief of
7 the General Staff of an army does not need to be told about inadequacies
8 in the reporting of crimes being committed by the forces under his command
9 or under the command of his commander. Is -- is that what you are saying?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't have to be informed.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you think it's a good idea for you not to be
12 informed, bearing in mind the position you held?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think it's a good idea.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, in the tour that was carried out in early
15 June, you've been told by Mr. Stamp that that also identified serious
16 weaknesses in the reporting of crimes, and again you're saying you were
17 not told about that. Is that the position?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was told nothing about that.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Who would you expect to have been directed to sort
20 out the problem?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The commander.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: And who would you expect him to have directed to do
23 it within the structure of his command?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Subordinate commanders and the organ
25 of security of the 3rd Army. The chief of security of the 3rd Army.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Would you have expected the orders to that effect
2 to have passed through your hands as Chief of the General Staff?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Were there any such orders?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Specifically concerning information
6 from General Geza and General Vasiljevic [as interpreted], I know of no
7 such orders being made at the staff.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: The question I'm asking at the moment relates to
9 action taken by General Pavkovic. Were there orders that passed through
10 your hands after the beginning of May, after the 6th of May, and after the
11 18th of May instructing someone within the structure of command to sort
12 out the problem of inadequate reporting of crimes?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I cannot assert that we received
14 such orders.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
16 Mr. Stamp.
17 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Well, I have -- I have just a question.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: One moment. I think --
19 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm sorry. I apologise.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: I think it's -- Mr. Fila wants to intervene.
21 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm sorry.
22 MR. FILA: [Microphone not activated]
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please. Microphone for Mr. Fila.
24 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] I just wanted you and Mr. Stamp to look
25 at page 48, line 5. I don't think the name is right. I believe that
1 another general should be named, not the one who is on the record. Line 5
2 on page 48.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Just a -- it's not line 5. Line 3, is it?
4 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] In line 5, it says "Vasiljevic." I
5 think it should be Farkas.
6 MR. STAMP: Line 3.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Line 3. Counsel is correct.
8 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] But above that.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, you're quite right, Mr. Fila. Thank you.
10 Thank you.
11 Judge Chowhan.
12 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Thank you, sir.
13 I'm sorry, General. May I kindly have your kind attention. Do
14 you -- do you feel that you were kept in the dark about such reportings
15 not finding their way to you or your not even been told about them?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am not aware of those reports, if
17 you mean reports by General Geza Farkas and General Vasiljevic. I didn't
18 read such reports.
19 JUDGE CHOWHAN: You may not have had, but this type of mention
20 that the reporting was inadequate and there was more crime, and so on and
21 so forth, you -- you did not hear anything about it. I mean, you did not
22 even have a feel of it, which would obviously lead us to think that
23 perhaps you were kept in the dark because you were the Chief of the
24 General Staff.
25 What do you think about it?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think I was kept in the
2 dark. I believe that whatever was going on in the field and whatever was
3 detected, the commanders reported to me regularly. If there was something
4 the commanders didn't know about, then it couldn't have been in the
5 reports of the 3rd Army addressed to the Supreme Command Staff. I don't
6 think the commanders had any reason to hold back any incidents from their
8 JUDGE CHOWHAN: So after this statement, one implies that there --
9 there seems to be no inadequacies in reporting what was complained of
10 and -- and if there weren't and other generals are saying there were, this
11 leads to sort of a controversy. But does that mean that some facts are
12 being -- I apologise using this word -- are being suppressed by your good
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Professionally I did not have any
15 right and I did not have the capacity, especially not the moral ability,
16 to hold back any reports coming from corps commanders or commanders of
17 independent units or the assistant of the army commander and to disable
18 that information that is important from the -- for the Supreme Command
19 Staff from being included in the reports. Anything that the -- the
20 assistant commanders could have addressed to certain generals.
21 JUDGE CHOWHAN: Actually, sorry, General, I am asking too much.
22 Actually, we are talking of the omissions, there being no reflection of
23 the inadequacies of which mention was being made. We're not talking of
24 what you reported. We're talking of what was not reported. And you tell
25 us that you were not aware of these things. That is really where we were
1 trying to find an answer. What, was it your inaptitude? Was it that you
2 didn't like to -- didn't like these things to be reported? Because you
3 were really at a pivotal position and you were on a roundabout, things
4 moved around you. So that gives us -- gives me a bit of a surprise.
5 Would you like to comment on that? Forgive me if I am being a bit blunt.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Please, combat reports that were
7 daily reports and that were submitted to the Supreme Command Staff were at
8 the same time submitted to the commander of the 3rd Army at his forward
9 command post. If I made any kind of mistake or if I tried to suppress any
10 information, I would certainly be held responsible by the army commander.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
12 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
13 Q. I think you've answered quite a few of the questions, but going
14 back to the field and the -- the order, the reports coming up. I think I
15 established with you earlier that there were three lines fairly
16 independent of each other, and I think I established with you that you
17 were responsible for one of those lines of reporting going up -- for at
18 least one of those lines going up. Having regard to the fact that you
19 were responsible for reporting, it was your responsibility, sir, to ensure
20 that adequate and clear reports went to the General Staff or Supreme
21 Command Staff. Would you not expect that if a correction was to be made
22 or if there were problems, General Pavkovic would ask you to correct your
23 part of the reporting? Wouldn't you not expect that?
24 A. There were additions and supplements to reports covering
25 additional information or information that we learned a bit later, a
1 couple of hours subsequently. So there are supplements to reports
2 covering certain problems or incidents.
3 Q. Well, that is not an answer to my question. My request is similar
4 to one that was asked from the Bench, but it -- it is: Does your answer
5 remain the same, that you would not expect to be ordered by
6 General Pavkovic to take corrective measures in the reporting up from the
7 3rd Army now that I remind you that you said that you were responsible for
8 the reporting? Does your answer remain the same?
9 A. I would have expected General Pavkovic to draw my attention to the
10 need for certain reports or certain parts of reports to be improved if
11 there were objective reasons for that. I was subordinate to the army
12 commander and I was executing his orders.
13 Q. Very well. And this might be relevant to the issue of reporting.
14 I'm not sure. But if you look at paragraph 64 of your statement, you said
15 that: "The presence of other armed formations was neither registered --
16 was neither approved nor registered in the zone of responsibility for
17 the -- of the 3rd Army." And you gave reasons.
18 What do you mean when you say --
19 A. 64? 64?
20 Q. Yes.
21 A. That's the paragraph?
22 Q. Yes. What do you mean when you say "not registered"; "the
23 presence of armed formations was not registered"?
24 A. Not identified. Which means there were no such groups in the area
25 of responsibility of the 3rd Army.
1 Q. You're saying that your knowledge in Nis was that in the area of
2 the 3rd Army you only had VJ armed formations? And I presume maybe you
3 also include MUP formations.
4 A. Yes, formations of the VJ, formations of the MUP, and formations
5 of the Ministry of Defence, units of civilian defence and civilian
7 Q. Can I take it that you're saying that any crimes committed by
8 units in that area would have been committed by units that were associated
9 with those organs that you mentioned?
10 A. We cannot confirm that crimes were committed by any sort of armed
11 institution in the area of the 3rd Army unless the perpetrators have been
13 Q. If we could look at 4D198, paragraph 12 thereof. This, I remind
14 you, is an order of the 3rd Army command of the 7th of May, 1999. To the
15 commanders of the Pristina Corps and the Nis Corps.
16 In paragraph 12, it says: "Ensure complete control of the
17 territory and movement of Siptar civilians."
18 What does that mean? "Ensure complete control of the territory,"
20 A. "Complete control of the territory" implies, first of all, combat
21 deployment of the units that are located in certain zones and areas; make
22 sure that units are in their positions. It also implies the movement of
23 civilians who live in that part of the territory, to avoid accidents when
24 civilians would penetrate the combat deployment of units, especially by
25 night, or any locations that are mined.
1 It also means the passage of other civilians who move outside the
2 area of the corps either to visit their own soldiers or to provide
3 logistical support to brigades. So that means complete control of all
4 civilians and all local citizens and both -- both locals and those who are
5 coming on some sort of business, as well as movements of civilians who
6 wish to leave the zone for which the commander is responsible.
7 Q. Yes. Those might well be good military reasons in a conflict zone
8 to -- to ensure complete control of the movement of civilians in general.
9 That's regardless of ethnicity. But what I want you to explain is what
10 does it mean to ensure complete control of the movement of Albanian - what
11 is described here as Siptar - civilians? Why was it necessary to make
12 that distinction?
13 A. Let's first establish the reasons for these movements of
14 population within the area of responsibility of regiments and brigades.
15 Civilians were moving because they were in danger and they were looking
16 for safe places where civilians were accepted. Through the corps command,
17 commanders were seeking help for certain civilians who wished to remain
18 within combat zones, and representatives of the Red Cross was coming to
19 visit. It was also necessary to protect the population against
20 terrorists, just as our own troops needed to be protected from them.
21 Q. And that is the meaning -- that explanation you just gave is a
22 meaning of an order to control the movement of Kosovar Albanian civilians?
23 Again, it seems to me - maybe I interpret your answer incorrectly - that
24 that answer would apply to civilians of any ethnicity.
25 A. It could apply, and there is an order covering the issuing of
1 laissez-passez for all the civilians coming in and out the zone,
2 regardless of ethnicity. There is such an order dealing with passage
4 Q. So it seems from your answer that you cannot provide an answer why
5 Siptar Albanians civilians are the focus of this order and not civilians
6 in general. You can't tell us why.
7 A. Can I explain? First of all, that was the most numerous category
8 of population. Their movements in view of their numbers were the greatest
9 we had in combat zones. That is why the emphasis on that, that is, the
10 commander's greatest concern. He's saying that we should find out where
11 these people were going and, if possible, to inform them of safe areas
12 where they could stay and where they would be able to receive aid either
13 from the army or from the Red Cross.
14 Q. Well, he doesn't say all of that in the order, does he?
15 A. Not everything is written here, but there were at least another
16 five or six orders dealing with care for civilians, especially reports by
17 brigade commanders.
18 Q. Is it not correct that on the declaration of a state of war then
19 the setting up of war military courts is a routine measure?
20 A. Not in a single army or state during the course of a war courts
21 should not be a routine matter. They are established by the state for a
22 certain reason. Military courts, that is.
23 Q. All right. But normally before the -- the declaration or
24 proclamation of a state of war, you have military courts functioning.
25 However, once there is a proclamation of a state of war, then
1 automatically you set up military war courts.
2 A. Yes. But certain documents have to be written for that, and that
3 is why there are documents on the establishment of these courts, because
4 from the point of view of the personnel working there, they had to be much
5 stronger than existing peacetime courts.
6 Q. Indeed. So when you -- well, just look at paragraph 42 of your
7 statement. You -- you state that the setting up of wartime military
8 courts so speedily resulted from the 1st Army -- the 3rd Army commander's
9 decision to prevent undesirable occurrences in the functioning of the army
10 and to ensure respect for the Constitution, the law, and for international
11 humanitarian law from the outset of the -- the aggression.
12 Weren't -- was the setting up of these courts not only automatic
13 on the proclamation of a state of war but primarily to deal with issues
14 involving the -- involving desertion and the failure of persons to respond
15 to mobilisation calls? That was the primary purpose for setting up these
16 wartime military courts. Wouldn't you agree with that?
17 A. Wartime military courts, on the basis of the law and on the basis
18 of facts, were supposed to try all citizens who changed their status and
19 lost certain civic rights. They would enter wartime units and receive
20 weapons and could use these weapons under concern conditions. An army of
21 23.000 men becomes an army of 130.000 men.
22 As for mobilisation, you said failure to respond to call-up. You
23 said that that was one of the reasons too for bringing all citizens who
24 had the military obligation into units. Also, at the beginning of the
25 aggression. For example, the capturing of pilots or any other soldiers of
1 a foreign army and treatment of such persons. Also, with regard to a
2 large number of people, irrespective of measures that were taken, measures
3 were made to keep things at a very high level, but still there will be
4 individuals who will engage in crime, rape, et cetera, who will therefore
5 smear the reputation of the army.
6 Q. Well, I'm not sure if you have answered the question I asked.
7 Let's look at 4D160. This is an order you signed and it relates
8 to this setting up of these courts and their responsibility to send
9 reports to the 3rd Army command. You have it in paragraph 43 of your
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And my earlier question involved a suggestion to you that the
13 primary reason for setting up these military courts was not only because
14 it was an automatic requirement when a proclamation of war was declared
15 but for manpower reasons.
16 If you look at the order there, which is in just five
17 paragraphs --
18 A. Yes. The 29th of March. The order of the 29th of March, the one
19 that I signed. Yes. Yes, I've had a look.
20 Q. It pretty much coincides with the setting up of these wartime
21 military courts. And in paragraph 4, you refer to the crimes which
22 specific attention was paid to in the reports. Do you see in this order a
23 requirement that specific attention should remain in the reports to -- to
24 what you describe in paragraph 42 to be the main reason for setting up
25 this -- these courts, including international humanitarian law and
1 decisions to prevent undesirable occurrences? The reasons that you are
2 concerned with in this report appear to be manpower issues and materiel
3 issues. Wouldn't you agree with that?
4 A. In order to have a successful mobilisation of the 3rd Army, these
5 were important problems that we had to deal with and military courts -- or
6 rather, courts have to deal with this. I'm talking about the beginning of
7 the aggression. Those were our biggest problems.
8 Q. Yes. But you don't -- you didn't include in this order, did you,
9 a reference to special consideration for serious crimes against
10 individuals and breaches of international humanitarian law? Did you?
11 A. I did not, and there is a reason.
12 Q. What was it?
13 A. Because as Chief of Staff of the army, I thought that it was
14 improper for me to teach judges that they would try all -- all crimes
15 during the course of the aggression. I am not competent to say, Teach
16 Colonel Radosavljevic, who is one of the doyen of our military judiciary.
17 Q. Now, when you send out an order like this, when you establish the
18 courts, it is not a requirement -- it's not a teaching exercise really.
19 You are indicating to them what is important to you and the command to
20 hear about what they should report to you about. And you have not
21 referred to the matters stated in paragraph 43 of your statement in this
23 A. Sir, this is an order on the establishment of courts, and there is
24 just this instruction in paragraph 4, what the main problem is of the 3rd
25 Army at the beginning of the aggression, to establish the 3rd Army. In
1 many other documents that you are not referring to now, in orders, in
2 directives, in orders, in the directive of General Ojdanic, in the order
3 of the commander of the 3rd Army, what is always accentuated is observing
4 the norms of international laws of war; and in some other orders too. And
5 I think that these orders were exhibited here during these proceedings..
6 Q. At paragraph -- and this is to move on. At paragraph 28 and
7 paragraph 53 of your report, you -- you state that the reinforcements were
8 brought in to the --
9 A. Excuse me, paragraph 28 you said?
10 Q. 28.
11 A. Yes. Yes, I understand.
12 Q. And 53/54. You speak about reinforcements --
13 A. Just a moment, please.
14 Q. And you indicate that they were brought in after the conflict
15 started. Up until that time, up until the decision to withdraw the OSCE
16 observers, were you aware that placing new army units into Kosovo would be
17 a breach of the October agreements entered into by the government of
19 A. [No verbal response]
20 Q. You can't nod --
21 A. The agreement between Mr. Milosevic and Holbrooke? Yes, I am
22 aware of the constraints, the prohibitions for units to enter the area of
23 Kosovo and Metohija.
24 Q. Paragraph 54. I think you said the 37th -- you referred to a
25 variety of units that were brought in after the conflict began. You said
1 the reinforcement lasted from the 29th of March to the 17th of April. In
2 that period, the Pristina Corps was reinforced and you list some brigades,
3 including the 37th Motorised Brigade.
4 Do you not know that the 37th Motorised Brigade had been brought
5 into Kosovo before that?
6 A. Before the 24th?
7 Q. Yes. Well, you say in your statement it's from the 29th of March.
8 But say before the 24th.
9 A. The 37th Motorised Brigade was not brought to Kosovo before the
10 24th of March.
11 Q. If we look at P -- well, you also refer in that paragraph,
12 paragraph 54, that the 211th Brigade was also brought in during that time
13 period. Do you not know that the 211th Brigade had been in Kosovo and had
14 been brought into Kosovo well before that period commenced?
15 A. The 211th Brigade was not brought in as a brigade before the 24th,
16 because it was in the area of Kursumlija. Kursumlija is a town outside
17 the border of Kosovo and Metohija.
18 I am sorry. I apologise. Perhaps there is a bit of a confusion
19 here. There is document from the month of January stating that the 3rd
20 Army shall be reinforced by a combat group of the 37th Brigade. The
21 combat group of the 22nd Motorised Brigade and the combat group of the
22 63rd Airborne Brigade. That is the directive. Three combat groups are
23 referred to there that are supposed to reinforce the 3rd Army. Those are
24 the combat groups involved. However, we could not bring them into the
25 territory of Kosovo and Metohija either because of the agreement that you
1 referred to.
2 Q. In respect to the -- and I'm not asking about these other combat
3 groups. We could probably get to them later. I'm just asking about the
4 37th and the 211th for time being. Do you know whether elements or parts
5 of those brigades were brought into Kosovo before that period? Before the
6 24th of March.
7 A. Only the commanders could come in order to familiarise themselves
8 with part of the state territory where they were supposed to bring their
9 brigades. That's a group of officers that would come to reconnoiter. But
10 not the unit itself.
11 Q. I'm -- I'll take that as a "no." I asked you about parts of these
12 units. That's what I asked you about.
13 A. Yes. My answer was "no."
14 Q. Could we look quickly at P2039. The combat report of the -- of
15 the 37th -- sorry, indeed -- indeed it is, a combat report of the 37th
16 Motorised Brigade of the 20th of March. It's to the 2nd Army. It's from
17 the Pristina Corps command and to the 2nd Army for information.
18 And if you look on the first page there, it says: "On the 7th of
19 March, 1999, the 37th Motorised Brigade (stand-by forces) departed to the
20 general area of Kosovska Mitrovica with the aim of carrying out exercises
21 and by raising combat readiness."
22 Have you ever seen this document before?
23 A. I think I have. I think so.
24 Q. Sir, having seen that --
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. -- would you agree with me that the 37th Motorised Brigade or
2 elements of it were in Kosovo from at least 7th of March, 1999?
3 A. According to this report, that part of the brigade was there by
4 the border at the very north of Kosovo and Metohija. They were there.
5 That's the combat group, as I said, in order to familiarise themselves
6 with the territory. And a number of people accompanying this combat
7 group -- command group. However, this brigade has a total of 4800 men.
8 [Prosecution counsel confer]
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you -- are you suggesting this report does not
10 relate to the whole brigade?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can see here the personnel
12 level, the number of men there. Please, 331, out of which almost 60
13 per cent are officers. I said that parts had to come in order to
14 familiarise themselves with parts of the state territory that they would
15 later take up. Up until the 23rd, the OSCE mission left the territory of
16 the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Why doesn't it say though there for that purpose?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It says that they are coming with a
19 view to carrying out exercise activities and raising combat readiness;
20 that is to say, that when a commander brings in 60 commissioned and
21 non-commissioned officers into a particular area, he is training his
22 command, his subordinates, and he is precisely spelling out their tasks in
23 the field.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: And what about the 200 -- and what -- 275 soldiers?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Non-commissioned and commissioned
1 officers always have to have escorts, logistics, drivers, et cetera. And
2 since they are coming to an area where they may be attacked, they have to
3 have a minimum of forces for defence.
4 I repeat, this brigade had 4800 men after completing mobilisation,
5 and at the beginning of April they came to join the Pristina Corps. There
6 is a document confirming that.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
8 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
9 Q. You said -- when you sought to explain the presence in Kosovo
10 Mitrovica, that they were on the border. But I have a map here that
11 indicates that Kosovo Mitrovica does not abut the border?
12 A. It's a few kilometres away from the administrative border, and
13 Kursumlija is outside the border.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Could I please see page 2 in the English of this
16 MR. STAMP: Yes.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: And the bottom part. The bottom parts. Thanks.
18 In paragraph 8.4, there's a reference to this group being engaged
19 in suppressing terrorism. Is that right?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All combat groups were intended for
21 activities against terrorist forces. You can see that they already had
22 two wounded soldiers.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Am I not right in saying that to bring them into
24 Kosovo for that purpose would be a breach of the agreement?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think so, because this is
1 not a classical combat unit. It is a command group that came to prepare
2 the arrival of the brigade, and it was attacked already at that moment.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: You know this for a fact, do you? You -- you know
4 all the circumstances of this?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I wasn't there at that
6 location, but according to this report, it is clear what the purpose of
7 this group was.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Now could we look at page 3, please.
9 And look at paragraph 14. Does that apply to the -- well, does
10 that indicate the use of the 37th Brigade in an offensive capacity?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Only if conditions were created for
12 that and if this command group were to be provoked. This is a preventive
14 JUDGE BONOMY: And the fourth page, please. Thank you.
15 Mr. Stamp.
16 MR. STAMP:
17 Q. Back to paragraph 8.4. It says it was engaged in suppressing
18 terrorism in Balinci village. Now, is that village -- do you know where
19 that village is, firstly? Isn't that village many, many miles -- or
20 kilometres, I'm sorry -- sorry. Sorry.
21 A. I don't know the exact location of this village. I don't.
22 Q. At least 10 kilometres south further into Kosovo from Kosovo
23 Mitrovica. You don't know that?
24 A. The village of Ralinci? Is that what you're referring to?
25 Q. The village of Poljance -- sorry, the village of Balinci that is
1 referred to in paragraph 8.4. Anyway, you're saying you don't know where
2 it is. I'm suggesting to you it is deep inside Kosovo, not near to the
4 A. That's 5, 6 kilometres away, I think. And this is just a patrol
5 scouting this route.
6 Q. And was it going to be acting as a patrol scouting the route in
7 accordance with the main task on the next day, at paragraph 14, which
8 says: "Continue to carry out the planned offensive actions"? Is that
9 planned scouting -- sorry, is that patrolled scouting?
10 A. This brigade had been brought in along that route from Raska, and
11 later in the beginning of April when those 4800 soldiers arrived, they
12 took hold of the Drenica region. And this was patrolling to assess the
13 security situation in the area in order to bring in the brigade
14 subsequently. That is why such a large group of officers and
15 non-commissioned officers were there. They were actually receiving their
16 assignment in an area that would be later taken control of by the 37th
17 Motorised Brigade.
18 Q. Very well. That is your answer. We're belabouring this document.
19 Just -- could I ask about paragraph 14 again. They are to transfer the
20 command post to the area of the Galica village? Do you know where the
21 Galica village is? Or do you know that it is in Vucitrn?
22 A. Yes. But the question is when this transfer is going to take
24 Q. Now, it says tasks -- main tasks for the next day. So the next
25 day -- is it day after the date of this report?
1 Well, let's move, if we may, to P1615. And I remind you at
2 page -- paragraph 54 of your report you spoke of the 211th Brigade coming
3 in after -- or during the period of the 29th of March to April. And you
4 confirmed that just now in testimony.
5 This is a war diary of the 3rd Army. It's from the forward
6 command post. Are you familiar with it?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Okay.
9 A. If you mean the contents.
10 Q. Let's look at page 32 of the English, which corresponds to page 30
11 of the B/C/S. And it's entry 210.
12 I will just say for the record I think you can see from the --
13 excuse me. Just may I just say for the record that you can see from the
14 B/C/S copy that the -- the date is the 15th of March, 1999. That is not
15 obvious from page 32 of the English copy, but it's on the preceding page
16 of the English copy.
17 At entry 210 for the 15th of March, it says: "During the day, the
18 211th Armoured Brigade was relocated from military barracks to the area of
19 Luzane, village of Obrandza, and village of Perane."
20 Do you know where the village of Luzane is? Isn't -- I'll ask a
21 different question. Isn't Luzane a village in Kosovo about 10 miles --
22 sorry, about 10 -- 5 to 10 kilometres south of Pec?
23 A. I'm sorry, what am I supposed to read from this diary? The 15th
25 Q. Yes. And do you see at the bottom of your page the entry numbered
2 A. "In the course of the day, the 211th Armoured Brigade was
3 relocated from Toplicki Ustanak, Toplicka Banja [as interpreted] barracks
4 without -- mm-hm -- into the area of Batlovo Luzani, north of Podujevo.
5 That means -- that's the boundary between Kosovo and Serbia. So this
6 brigade was not near Pec and had never been to Pec, because we had another
7 brigade there. That is to say, this brigade is on the northern boundary
8 of Kosovo and Metohija, the boundary between Kosovo and Serbia, which is
9 north of Podujevo.
10 Q. In your translation, you said Batlovo? Can you say that again,
11 please. I only had Luzane here. Can you say where it was relocated to.
12 A. Batlava -- that's east of Podujevo. On the same level as
13 Podujevo. Obrandza is to the west of Podujevo. Mitrovica and Podujevo
14 both are in the upper north of Kosovo and Metohija.
15 Q. Yes. But is that in Kosovo?
16 A. Above Podujevo. The brigade arrived without its armoured
17 battalion and without its combat group. So this is just one part of the
19 JUDGE BONOMY: How can you tell that?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is written: "During the day, the
21 211th Armoured Brigade (without combat group 211/-something, and without
22 its armoured battalion) was relocated from the Toplicki Ustanak barracks
23 in Kursumlija into these areas around Podujevo."
24 I can help you find Podujevo on the map.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: There is something of a translation problem here,
1 Mr. Stamp.
2 MR. STAMP: Yes, there is.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: This paragraph, if it's going to become of any
4 significance in the case, will have to be retranslated?
5 MR. STAMP: Yes. I think -- I'll move off this topic.
6 Q. Have you ever heard of a body called the Joint Command?
7 A. I have from the prior testimony of a number of witnesses.
8 Q. Did you in your capacity as Chief of Staff for the 3rd Army and
9 also in your post before that, since you say -- said that you were
10 monitoring events in Kosovo in 1998 and going into 1999, become aware of a
11 body called the Joint Command?
12 A. I was not aware of that body. If you want me to explain, I can.
13 Q. Well, I'm -- we'll get to that perhaps later. You are not aware
14 of the body. Did you hear of it -- did you hear references to activities
15 of the Joint Command?
16 A. No.
17 Q. When was the first time you heard the expression "Joint Command"?
18 Is it your evidence that you heard it first during the evidence in this
20 A. From witnesses who testified earlier about that concept, but there
21 was also some writing in our media after year 2000 about that so-called
22 command, but the authors who wrote that were not qualified. They were
24 Q. Sir, is it your evidence that the first time you heard about --
25 you heard the expression "Joint Command for Metohija -- for Kosovo and
1 Metohija" was in 2000?
2 A. In some publications that I referred to and from witnesses who
3 testified here.
4 Q. The question is about the first time you heard it. I just want to
5 be clear, because --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, Mr. Stamp, it couldn't be clearer.
7 MR. STAMP: Very well.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: After the year 2000 in his media. Now, if you want
9 him to be more specific, put a specific question to him. But there's a
10 limit to the number of times you can ask a witness whether he's heard of
11 the Joint Command while he was in the army.
12 MR. STAMP: Very well. I'll accept that his answer clearly is
13 that the first time was in the year 2000.
14 Q. Could you have a look at P --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: After the year 2000 is what he said. So it's not
16 in the year 2000.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm sorry. After 2000. Not in the
18 media, actually, but in some publications and books in which some
19 incompetent authors made their own analyses.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: The -- the -- what you said, first of all,
21 was "some writing in our media." Now, what --
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Oh, perhaps -- perhaps it's a translation problem.
24 You better tell us again. When you first heard the expression and -- or
25 read it and where you came across it.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's Note: The witness inadvertently
2 used the word that also covers various magazines and newspapers.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In year 2000, in the book
4 titled"Albanian Terrorism," by a certain Mr. Mijalkovski and at least in
5 one other book that I can't recall exactly now. So those are the two
6 sources from which I learned about this concept, this phenomenon; in
7 addition to witness testimony I heard from here.
8 MR. STAMP:
9 Q. Can we move on to P2017.
10 This is a regular combat report of the 3rd Army to the operation
11 centre of the Yugoslav Army General Staff of the 29th of April, 1999.
12 And if you look at the last page of this document. Do you have
13 the last page in B/C/S? Yes?
14 And also in English, please.
15 We see that it was forwarded to the forward command post of the
16 3rd Army for information. And that is consist with what you have in your
17 statement and what you said here, especially in paragraph 48 of your
18 statement: "Combat reports were compiled at the 3rd Army command post and
19 were sent from the command directly, while they were sent to the 3rd Army
20 forward command post solely for their information and on the principle of
22 And you said earlier that you're responsible for preparing this
23 report at the 3rd Army command post. Is this a report that you prepared?
24 A. It was prepared by Colonel Srdjan Kitanovic, who was in charge of
25 the duty operations team.
1 Q. Well, is this a report that you're responsible for the preparation
3 A. Yes. It was written by the colonel in the operations centre, who
4 headed the duty operations team.
5 Q. Okay. Let's look at page 2 in both English and B/C/S.
6 Is that page 2 in B/C/S? I'm sorry, it -- page 1 in B/C/S, I
8 Now, you say at the bottom of page 1, the second-to-last
9 paragraph -- can you read the last sentence of that paragraph, please. And
10 that's the middle of the English version.
11 A. You mean from the bottom or in the middle? About inspections.
12 Q. No, no, in the middle of page 2 for the English. For you I want
13 you to look at the bottom of the page in B/C/S in front of you, and you
14 see the last paragraph there, speaking about the 3rd Army commander
15 inspection. I want you to read the sentence before that.
16 A. "Measures have been taken to block the said areas and to execute
17 the tasks given in the spirit of the decision of the Joint Command for
18 Kosovo and Metohija."
19 I see this for the first time. At that time, I was inspecting two
20 brigades, in Zajecar and in Negotin and I can't understand where this term
21 comes from, where did Colonel Kitanovic pluck it from, unless he received
22 a report from a subordinate command including the same mistake.
23 Q. Well, I represent to you that there are quite a few VJ documents
24 referring to "the Joint Command for Kosovo and Metohija." Do I take it
25 your answer remains the same, that you have never seen this expression in
1 any of these documents?
2 A. I did not know of any Joint Command in the chain of command, in
3 the chain of subordination, nor did I see any documents including that
4 term, "Joint Command." In the army command, all documents bear official
5 stamps and all the other attributes from the 3rd Army alone, and not a
6 single document was drafted in the 3rd Army on the orders of a Joint
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp, it's time, I think, for our break.
9 MR. STAMP: And that was my --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm sorry?
11 MR. STAMP: [Microphone not activated] We could take a break now,
12 yes. It's a convenient time.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
14 MR. STAMP: Although, I think that I would start by closing the
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, that might be unfortunate, because it's a
17 break for an hour.
18 MR. STAMP: Well --
19 JUDGE BONOMY: We could have a --
20 MR. STAMP: We should --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: We could have a shorter one, I suppose, but that
22 depends on how long the rest of the questions are likely to be.
23 Mr. Bakrac.
24 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would have one
25 question only, and that would take two, three minutes.
1 MR. STAMP: With your leave, I -- this is the end of the
2 cross-examination. And perhaps you could use the time to finish for the
3 day. It's a matter for the Court really.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. Thank you, Mr. Stamp.
5 Mr. Aleksic, do you have much re-examination?
6 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Not much.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: We'll first of all here what it is Mr. Bakrac
8 wishes to raise.
9 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, a problem arose out of
10 the cross-examination and it could be relevant to my client; namely, when
11 the 37th Motorised Brigade arrived at Kosovo, and it's also relevant to
12 reporting. I would like to show the witness one document, two sentences
13 in it, in fact.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
15 Cross-examination by Mr. Bakrac:
16 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Stojimirovic. My name is
17 Mihajlo Bakrac, appearing for General Lazarevic. I'd like to show you one
18 document quickly. It's in e-court. P -- sorry, 5D84.
19 Right. Could we also have the same in English.
20 So that you wouldn't have to read it and waste your time, I'll
21 read quickly and you will just confirm whether I'm reading right. This is
22 a combat report from the Pristina Corps command dated 3rd April 1999
23 addressed to the 3rd Army command to the operations centre. Correct?
24 A. Correct.
25 Q. Can we have page 2, please.
1 So we have seen that the date is 3rd April. I'll read again.
2 You'll tell me whether I'm reading correctly.
3 "In the course of the day, the 37th Motorised Brigade in its
4 entirety was brought to the PrK zone and the 7th Infantry Brigade, which
5 according to plan is to be re-subordinated during the 4th of April is in
6 the process of being brought in."
7 A. Yes, and that's in keeping with what I've been saying.
8 Q. The 3rd of April.
9 A. Yes, and the 7th Infantry Brigade is supposed to come in on the
11 Q. Since I got an entire week, I want to finish quickly, because I
12 don't want to appear ungrateful and ...
13 A. Do I have --
14 Q. Please listen to me. Paragraph 5, "Security situation." I will
15 read again the relevant portion.
16 "Perpetrators of criminal acts shall be subjected to legal
17 measures and procedures.
18 "During the preceding day, 32 criminal reports were submitted
19 against the perpetrators of crimes (eight for murder, one for abuse, three
20 for attempted murder, two for taking vehicles -- seizing vehicles, six for
21 thefts, and 12 for willful abandonment)."
22 Is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Is there any mention of failure to respond to the call-up by
25 Gen A?
1 A. Not here.
2 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. I have no
3 further questions.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
5 Mr. Aleksic.
6 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, thank you.
7 Well, I need about 15 minutes, Your Honour. I don't know if it's
8 a good idea to take a half an hour's break.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: We'll take a break, then, I think, in that case.
10 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I ask the interpreters whether it would be
12 convenient to have a shorter break of 20 minutes or whether they would
13 prefer to proceed with a one-hour break.
14 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters note the 20-minute break would
15 be fine. Thank you.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: We have to have a break at this stage again, so
17 could you please leave the courtroom with the usher while we have the
18 break, and we will resume at 20 minutes past 1.00.
19 [The witness stands down]
20 --- Recess taken at 12.56 p.m.
21 --- On resuming at 1.21 p.m.
22 [The witness entered court]
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Aleksic.
24 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Re-examination by Mr. Aleksic:
1 Q. [Interpretation] General, could you please say whether you know of
2 any report about crimes that was received in the 3rd Army from subordinate
3 units without having been sent up the chain of command to the Supreme
4 Command Staff. Thank you.
5 A. [No interpretation]
6 MR. ACKERMAN: Excuse me, Your Honour, the answer was not recorded
7 in the --
8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note there was no audible answer.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. The answer --
10 MR. ZECEVIC: The microphones are not on for the witness.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: You better ask the question again then.
12 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. General, do you know of any report about crimes that was received
14 in the command of the 3rd Army from subordinate units of the Pristina and
15 Nis Corps without having been sent up further through the combat report up
16 the chain of command to the Supreme Command Staff?
17 A. No. All reports were sent up.
18 Q. Thank you. General, do you know that the command of the 3rd Army
19 ever received any report of the security administration of the Supreme
20 Command Staff after the tour of units by General Farkas and General
22 A. I am not aware of that.
23 Q. Thank you. General, am I right if I say that the line of
24 reporting of the security organs was quite independent from the line of
25 reporting of the chain of command?
1 A. I have already stated that that kind of practice prevailed.
2 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, with the permission of
3 the Trial Chamber, I would like to show the witness a document that was
4 sent for translation but is not in e-court. There is one copy for the
5 witness, one copy for the ELMO, and all the interpretation booths have
6 received 5D1310. That's the document. I would just like the witness to
7 have a look at it, by your leave. And could we just mark it for
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp, are you aware of this?
10 MR. STAMP: I have received a copy of a document. I expect it's
11 the same document.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. And --
13 MR. STAMP: I wish to make the same comment without repeating it.
14 I wish to endorse and adopt the statements made by Mr. Ackerman a couple
15 of days ago about receiving documents in Cyrillic in the course of the day
16 when they're about to be used. There's really nothing I can say or do
17 about this document.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Is there an explanation for that, Mr. Aleksic?
19 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] I do have an explanation. It's not
20 our document and I did not know I would have to use it today. That is a
21 document of Mr. Lazarevic's Defence. And because of their well-known
22 problems with translation, we have the situation we have now.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, their problems with translation hopefully
24 have been resolved, hopefully, by discussion, and I think it's not right
25 to continue to refer to problems when we've dealt with them.
1 Have you any objection to its use, Mr. Stamp?
2 MR. STAMP: No, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. You can use it.
4 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
5 For identification, it is 5D1310. Could we please have page 1 of
6 this document on the ELMO.
7 Q. General, could you please have a look at the first page.
8 A. Just a moment. May I read it, please.
9 Q. General.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Just tell us briefly, who is sending this document?
12 A. This document dated the 13th of April is being sent by the
13 security department of the 3rd Army, the chief of the department for
14 security. From the commander of the 3rd Army.
15 Q. General, tell us who was this document sent to?
16 A. To the Supreme Command Staff, to the security administration.
17 Q. The stamp in the right-hand corner, to the best of your knowledge,
18 what does it represent?
19 A. General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia, security administration,
20 strictly confidential, 6587-1, the 17th of April; that is to say, that the
21 security administration of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia --
22 or rather, the Supreme Command Staff received this information from the
23 security organs of the 3rd Army.
24 Q. Thank you, General.
25 Could we now please see only the last page of this document on the
2 General, you can also have a look at the screen on e-court. Just
3 tell me finally. This stamp and signature --
4 A. The stamp is of the command of the 3rd Army, the chief of the
5 security organ. I've already said. Colonel Stojadin Antic.
6 Q. Thank you, General. Now a different topic. Could we please call
7 up on e-court P2017. In order to be as expeditious as possible, I wish to
8 say that it was discussed by Mr. Stamp with you. It's a report dated the
9 29th of April. Page 2 in English and page 2 in B/C/S, please.
10 In English it's the last paragraph on the second page, and in
11 B/C/S it's the third bullet point from the top.
12 So, General, could you please read this third bullet point from
13 the top.
14 A. "Military prosecutor's offices received 116 criminal reports.
15 Three officers, 34 privates, 79 civilians outside the VJ. Two requests
16 for carrying out investigation were filed against one officer and one
17 private. And indictments were issued against privates. First instance
18 courts have detained four person, received eight requests for
19 investigation and ten indictments and adjudicated seven cases."
20 Q. And that is the information that on that day, the 29th of April,
21 the operations centre of the General Staff was made aware of on the basis
22 of this report.
23 Could we now call up on e-court 3D680.
24 General, please look at this document, read it, and give us your
25 comments. Can you give us your comments.
1 A. This is an order of the Chief of General Staff of the Army of
2 Yugoslavia, General Ojdanic, on the forces of the 37th Motorised Brigade
3 and their re-subordination to the 3rd Army -- or rather, the Pristina
5 Q. Just a moment, please. Could you tell us what the date of the
6 document is.
7 A. The 6th of March, 1999.
8 Q. Thank you, General.
9 Could we now call up in e-court 5D261, please. Paragraph 5,
10 please. In B/C/S, it's the last paragraph on this page; and in English -
11 believe me, I didn't have the time to - well, it is paragraph 5.
12 Could you please read it out. It's page 2 in English.
13 A. I have paragraph 7.
14 Q. Could we have page 1 in B/C/S again, please.
15 A. 5?
16 Q. Yes, 5.
17 A. "Bring" --
18 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please slow down, because we
19 do not have the text and it's illegible. Thank you.
20 MR. STAMP: Sorry. Since we were not notified about this
21 document; perhaps the witness could just identify what it is first, before
22 we move to the contents of the substance of it.
23 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes, I do apologise.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is a document of the General
25 Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia, the sector for operations and staff
1 affairs, dated the 13th of March, 1999, to the commander or Chief of Staff
2 of the command of the 3rd Army. It is an order regarding preparation for
3 mobilisation of certain units of the 3rd Army with the mobilisation of
4 these units to begin on the 15th of March. And the order was signed by
5 the Deputy Chief of General Staff, General Marijanovic. So it's an order
6 for mobilisation of a certain number of units of the 3rd Army.
7 Q. Could we please see paragraph 5 and could you read it.
8 A. "Introduce the mechanised battalion of the 211th Armoured Brigade
9 from the sector of Kursumlijska Banja to the sector of Malo Kosovo. Bring
10 it in in accordance with the plan of the command of the 3rd Army."
11 Q. Thank you, General.
12 In paragraph 67 of your statement, you spoke about tours of
13 inspection and General Velickovic's tour of inspection at the end of May.
14 Did you take any measures after this control?
15 A. Yes. Since this was one of the most comprehensive tours of
16 inspection, in view of the number of officers involved --
17 MR. STAMP: It's not readily apparent from the question how this
18 arises for re-examination.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Aleksic.
20 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Well, it arises from the questions
21 put by the Trial Chamber and Mr. Stamp whether measures were taken after
22 these tours of inspection. I think it is quite legitimate for me to show
23 an exhibit in terms of the measures that had indeed been taken. If you
24 don't think so ...
25 MR. STAMP: If I may briefly. I didn't ask him about
1 General Velickovic's tour of inspection. I asked about General Farkas'
2 tour and General Gajic's tour of the security sector.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE BONOMY: We accept what you say, Mr. Stamp, but that you
5 made no reference to this; on the other hand, the issue that's being
6 explored is that of action or inaction following inspections or tours, and
7 that was an issue in cross-examination, therefore we consider it does
8 arise and we will allow the question.
9 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
10 Could we please call up in e-court just one more document, 3D700.
11 Q. General, can you recognise this document?
12 A. Yes. This is a plan for addressing shortcomings ordered by the
13 commander of the 3rd Army after the information and briefing submitted by
14 General Velickovic, I was the mainstay of this plan, and we submitted this
15 plan to the General Staff.
16 Q. Could we please have a look at page 2.
17 Just briefly, General, could we hear your comments as to what it
18 is that we see here.
19 A. The plan was approved by the commander. The Chief of Staff is
20 signed there. We see his signature there. And it refers to measures that
21 are to be taken primarily in terms of command, logistics, better control
22 over the engagement of officers in the brigade, and there are no important
23 issues as far as security is concerned. This is just part of the plan. I
24 think that the plan includes three or four pages.
25 Q. Thank you, General.
1 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. I have no
2 further questions for this witness.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Aleksic.
4 MR. STAMP: Your Honour, before --
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
6 MR. STAMP: Before you proceed with your questions, there's
7 something which doesn't -- well, does arise from the re-examination.
8 Having regard to a new document that was brought up. And the witness was
9 asked about paragraph 5 of 5D261, which was the re-subordination of the
10 211th Brigade to Malo Kosovo. And I think it would be perhaps useful if
11 the witness was just asked to say whether he knows where is -- where Malo
12 Kosovo is.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Any objection to that, Mr. Aleksic?
14 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stojimirovic, can you tell us where Malo Kosovo
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Malo Kosovo is in the area of
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you content with that, Mr. Stamp?
20 MR. STAMP: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you very much.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stojimirovic, that brings your evidence to an
24 end. Oh --
25 MR. STAMP: I am so sorry. I had discussions with my friend
1 Mr. Aleksic about paragraph 66 of the statement, which is something we
2 should probably have dealt with at the beginning of the testimony, and it
3 needs to be dealt with, I think, before the witness is released.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Aleksic.
5 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think it's been
6 resolved during the testimony. As far as I've been informed by the
7 members of my team, that paragraph was removed. It is no longer in
8 e-court. So everything seems to be settled.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Okay. Well, I shall take my pen through it. Thank
11 If you get out quickly, you'll get away before anyone else raises
12 anything else.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do apologise. I do apologise. I
14 think I was too tired when answering the question concerning Malo Kosovo.
15 What did I say? Mitrovica or Podujevo? Oh, I do apologise. So it's in
16 the area of Podujevo. I am a bit tired.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Albeit you may be less content with that answer,
18 Mr. Stamp, are you content?
19 MR. STAMP: Yes, Your Honour. I leave it at that.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
21 Well, that does now complete your evidence. Thank you for coming
22 to give evidence. You're now free to leave the courtroom.
23 [The witness withdrew]
24 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm told, Mr. Hannis, that you wish to raise
1 MR. HANNIS: Yes, Your Honour. It's just a matter -- there was
2 one matter I wanted to put on the record briefly. I'm wearing black today
3 to reflect the sadness of the occasion because today is the last day in
4 which our case manager, Susan Grogan, will be with us. She's leaving to
5 work were the Lebanon Tribunal. She's been an extreme professional
6 throughout this trial and has contributed greatly not only to the
7 Prosecution but, I think, to the Court staff and to the Defence, and -- in
8 making this trial as smoothly as it has. I'll miss her, and I just wanted
9 to note that on the record.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you very much, Mr. Stamp.
11 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour. Your Honour, if you'll
12 allow me. In my own name, and I'm certain speaking on behalf of the
13 entire Defence, I have to join in and say that we are truly sorry as well,
14 because we were always assisted so fairly by the lady, and I don't want to
15 take up too much time. I just wish to say that we are always sorry to see
16 Ms. Grogan leave.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, Ms. Grogan, the Bench greatly appreciate your
18 quiet efficiency. You've got an attendance record here which is almost as
19 good as that of the accused, and that is normally difficult to achieve. I
20 think we see you as a reassuring presence in the court, and therefore
21 we'll miss that reassuring presence.
22 However, I suspect Mr. Hannis may miss -- and Mr. Stamp may miss
23 you even more. We can only wish you well in your work with the Lebanon
24 Tribunal, and no doubt we'll see you again, since it's likely that will be
1 Now, any other matters?
2 Mr. Ackerman.
3 MR. ACKERMAN: Well, just to add -- just to add to this, Your
4 Honour. To be perfectly frank, we are looking forward to the chaos that
5 will result in the Prosecution team with the departure of Ms. Grogan.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, can I -- can we now draw a line under your
8 MR. ACKERMAN: We're close.
9 I filed a motion today and it has actually been filed. It's a
10 motion to remove Exhibit 4D496 from e-court. You'll remember that
11 yesterday we asked that be brought up. It was a map. And rather
12 immediately Mr. Aleksic said, "No, that's not the one," and then we found
13 it much later in the day and brought it up during the redirect. And I
14 think Mr. Hannis has no objection to this being removed, since we didn't
15 actually use it as an exhibit.
16 MR. HANNIS: That's correct.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. That will be allowed.
18 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, there are, as you know from
19 yesterday's meeting with CLSS, there are a few - and there's some dispute
20 about how many - outstanding documents yet to be translated that we've
21 submitted to CLSS. I -- I don't think it exceeds more than 20 or 25
22 pages, and that's what I suggested to them yesterday.
23 I suspect those will be finished rather quickly. And so what I
24 would like to do is ask that I be given until the 9th of November to file
25 a final bar table motion that would include all the other exhibits we want
1 to have admitted from the bar table.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: We'll happily grant that motion but on, I think,
3 one condition, and that is that you give to Mr. Haider today a list of the
4 numbers of these documents. We want to know exactly what the case --
5 the -- the final parameters of the case are.
6 MR. ACKERMAN: Well -- yes.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: And then we are quite -- we are quite happy to see
8 these things being dealt with in due course.
9 MR. ACKERMAN: Yes.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: But we can't have an open-ended situation. We have
11 to know what the position is.
12 MR. ACKERMAN: I totally understand that. And you being the
13 Judge, you can overrule my earlier order to my staff not to do any more
14 work on this case for 72 hours. But now I'm going to have to tell them
15 they do have to do some.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Well -- yeah.
17 MR. ACKERMAN: That's okay.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: I think they would prefer to clear the decks, I
19 suspect, Mr. Ackerman, so --
20 MR. ACKERMAN: We'll get it clear this afternoon, Your Honour --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: So if you could do that.
22 MR. ACKERMAN: Yes.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Then subject to that, the 9th of November is a
24 perfectly reasonable request.
25 MR. ACKERMAN: And subject to that, we rest our case.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes. So it's rested subject to all outstanding
2 issues in relation to documents.
3 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: And there -- there is one other matter I wish to
5 raise separately. We now have the Prosecution's notice about Exhibit
6 P985. Now, that's the Law on Defence where Articles 8 and 41 were the
7 subject of retranslation. Similar to the situation over the Constitution,
8 which was submitted by the Defence.
9 The Prosecution have no objection to it being admitted, and we
10 will therefore make an order admitting the retranslated version.
11 So far as the Law on Defence is concerned, can we take it that
12 there is no objection from any Defence counsel to the terms of the
13 retranslation in this case?
14 MR. ZECEVIC: No objection, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. An order will be issued later today
16 dealing with both these matters very briefly.
17 We shall now adjourn until 9.00 a.m. On the 6th of November.
18 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.51 p.m.,
19 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 6th day
20 of November, 2007, at 9.00 a.m.