1 Tuesday, 27 November 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.00 a.m.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Judge Nosworthy is absent this morning for urgent
6 personal reasons; we've decided to continue in her absence, and she does,
7 in fact, hope to join us later in the session.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Good morning, Mr. Jelic.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: The cross-examination by Ms. Kravetz will continue
12 in a moment. Please bear in mind, as I said to you yesterday morning,
13 that the solemn declaration to speak the truth continues to apply to your
15 Ms. Kravetz.
16 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you, Your Honour.
17 WITNESS: KRSMAN JELIC [Resumed]
18 [Witness answered through interpreter]
19 Cross-examination by Ms. Kravetz: [Continued]
20 Q. Good morning, General.
21 A. Good morning.
22 Q. Yesterday when we left off we were speaking about your meetings
23 with the chief of the Urosevac SUP. You had told us that the chief of the
24 Urosevac SUP during the war was Mr. Janicevic, Colonel Janicevic; is that
1 A. Yes, Colonel Janicevic was the chief.
2 Q. Was he later replaced by Colonel Bozidar Filic?
3 A. Yes, sometime in the middle of the war he was replaced by
4 Colonel Filic.
5 Q. And you had interactions and meetings with both of these men,
7 A. Yes, in the periods when they were chiefs, I was in contact with
8 them and attended meetings with them.
9 Q. Now, when you received an order from your superior commander to
10 carry out a joint action with a PJP detachment, a MUP unit, would you
11 coordinate the implementation of such an action with the chief of the
12 Urosevac SUP?
13 A. Yes, if we would receive a plan for the execution of an
14 anti-terrorist action, then we would have a coordinating meeting and agree
15 on that meeting how to implement the task.
16 Q. And I take it the situation would be the same in the event that
17 you received an order to carry out a joint operation involving the JSO or
18 the SAJ, you would also coordinate the implementation of such action with
19 the chief of the Urosevac SUP?
20 A. Yes. We received tasks, and in parallel SUP would receive their
21 tasks. And only when the chief of the SUP receives a task and I have
22 already received mine, he would call me or I would call him, depending on
23 who received it earlier, and then we would organize a coordination of that
25 Q. And at these meetings, at these coordination meetings, what sort
1 of information was exchanged between you and the personnel from the
2 Urosevac SUP?
3 A. As a rule, we would exchange basic information about the enemy,
4 the terrorist forces, their strength, location, where they were, and the
5 rest would be coordinating through the documents that we received, I from
6 the corps and he from his staff.
7 Q. He would also - "he," meaning the chief of the SUP of Urosevac -
8 would also give you information about actions that the MUP was carrying
9 out on their own in our area of responsibility, correct?
10 A. The area of responsibility - I have to clarify this - the area of
11 responsibility of my brigade was the territory I described a few days ago;
12 however, the area of responsibility of the brigade was where the brigades
13 were deployed, where the units of the brigade were deployed, not the rest
14 of the territory. So it was mostly I who gave him information about where
15 my units were deployed, and he would give me information of the actual
16 deployment because his possibilities of observation were greater on the
18 Q. He would also give you information about actions, large-scale
19 anti-terrorist actions that the MUP was going to carry out on its own
20 without the involvement of the VJ; is that correct?
21 A. If he executed an action without the participation or support of
22 the army, then he would just provide me information that was relevant to
23 me, whether there were any military installations in the vicinity, whether
24 some unit was deployed in the areas, lest that unit take some action that
25 would lead to a clash between the army and the police.
1 Q. So this information would be exchanged prior to the carrying out
2 of these actions by the MUP?
3 A. In principle, we exchanged information, if an action was planned,
4 before the plan was executed, before the anti-terrorist action was
6 Q. Okay. Thank you, General. You described your contacts with the
7 chief of the SUP in Urosevac as very professional. During your meetings,
8 your regular meetings, with either of Mr. Janicevic or Mr. Filic, did they
9 at any moment, either of these two men, raise any sort of concerns or
10 complaints regarding the behaviour or misconduct of VJ units on the
12 A. Yes, certainly. The information we exchanged at those meetings
13 would include -- for instance, if they encountered inappropriate conduct
14 by commanding officers or soldiers, something that disrupted law and
15 order, they would provide me with that information. And more
16 specifically, their professional, their technical service in charge of
17 that would provide that information to my security organ.
18 Q. Did Colonel Janicevic at any time during -- at these meetings
19 raise any concerns about the VJ committing crimes against the civilian
21 A. While he was chief of the Urosevac SUP, he never shared such
22 information with me, except for misdemeanours. He never told me about any
23 major criminal offences.
24 Q. We have heard evidence in this case, General, about complaints
25 raised by Colonel Janicevic with the MUP staff, basically complaints
1 regarding criminal behaviour, improper behaviour of VJ units on the ground
2 and an allegation that most of the crimes on the ground were being
3 committed by the VJ.
4 MS. KRAVETZ: This, Your Honours, is Exhibit P1996, it's the
5 minutes of the MUP staff meeting, 7th May 1999.
6 Q. Did Colonel Janicevic at any moment complain to you that most of
7 the crimes on the ground were being committed by VJ units?
8 A. He never told me any such thing. He told me about individual
9 cases that happened, but never any major crimes, serious crimes.
10 Q. The minutes of the same MUP staff meeting that I just referred to
11 on 7th May records Colonel Filic complaining about incomprehensible
12 behaviour from the part of the VJ, and he says that soldiers are being
13 detained for looting but that the VJ's not taking sufficient measures
14 against these soldiers. Were you aware that such a problem existed within
15 your units?
16 A. Let me first answer the first part of the question concerning
17 Janicevic, he was not chief of Urosevac SUP at the time, and at the time
18 it happened in Pristina, he was talking about Pristina and I was in
19 Urosevac. So those crimes, if they really happened, he was talking about
20 the locality he was in charge of then, that's the town of Pristina and its
21 broader area, not that 243rd Brigade and not Urosevac. So I can't tell
22 you more about it. It was not my territory, and Urosevac was no longer
23 his responsibility.
24 As for Mr. Filic, he never told me about any serious crimes. He
25 did share with me information about minor problems and that was dealt with
1 through his operatives and my organs of security and military police.
2 MS. KRAVETZ: Your Honour, I see my colleague Mr. Ivetic is on his
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic.
5 MR. IVETIC: Your Honours, I have to intervene because the
6 question -- two questions ago referred to Mr. Janicevic and some alleged
7 comments in the minutes. I've just now been able to open the minutes and
8 read them. Those comments where not in the minutes at all. So I would
9 ask that counsel please cite exactly to where the foundation or basis is
10 for these questions if she's going to imply that things are in evidence,
11 when, in fact, they are not in evidence.
12 MS. KRAVETZ: Your Honour, we ask look at the document. I was
13 just trying to proceed without having to refer to the document. It's
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, let's have the relevant passage on the
16 screen, please.
17 MS. KRAVETZ: It's page 5 of the English and 4 of the B/C/S. The
18 passage I was referring to is somewhere in the middle of the page of the
19 English. It starts with: "The military is not taking sufficient measures
20 and most crimes are being perpetrated by the VJ ..."
21 JUDGE BONOMY: And this is who speaking?
22 MS. KRAVETZ: This is Colonel Janicevic.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you maintaining your objection, Mr. Ivetic?
24 MR. IVETIC: Indeed. It's in Pristina. She's talking about
25 Urosevac with the General who was in Urosevac in Pristina. She's mixing
1 apples and oranges. In the Serbian they're talking about regular crimes.
2 They're not talking about crimes in actions. They're talking about crimes
3 that have been described in the document which are looting --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: That wasn't the basis for your objection as I
5 understood it. The witness has already explained that and he has
6 endeavoured to correct the misrepresentation which he claims was made by
7 counsel, but there was nothing improper in it. People do make mistakes if
8 that's what's happened. Your tone of righteous indignation was hardly
9 justified in the circumstances.
10 Can we go back please to the previous page. Is --
11 MS. KRAVETZ: I think you want page 4 on the screen.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Page 4, thanks.
13 MS. KRAVETZ: Your Honour, my question was simply whether
14 Colonel Janicevic during his tenure as chief of the SUP in Urosevac had
15 raised these concerns which are being expressed here at this meeting. I
16 am well aware that he was chief of Pristina SUP at the time.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Please continue.
18 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry, with your leave, Your Honour, just
19 technical issue, could we have the same page in B/C/S, please.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: The reason I wanted to see it was just to see the
21 description of Janicevic on the page, and it is chief of the SUP in
23 MS. KRAVETZ: May I move on, Your Honour?
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, please.
25 MS. KRAVETZ:
1 Q. General, last Friday you told us that to your knowledge there were
2 no crimes committed by members of your brigade and that all crimes that
3 were discovered were prosecuted. What type of crimes were you referring
4 to when you said that all crimes that were discovered were prosecuted?
5 MS. KRAVETZ: This is, Your Honours, at page 18955 of the
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The most serious crimes, that is,
8 murders, were not committed by any members of the army, so no such were
9 charged. Most crimes were looting and robbery and theft, and all of those
10 were detected, criminal reports were filed, and the persons were tried.
11 MS. KRAVETZ:
12 Q. Do you recall approximately how many cases were prosecuted? We're
13 talking about members of your brigade.
14 A. Well, I know that 15 to 20 serious crimes were processed and
15 between 40 and 50 less serious ones.
16 Q. And when you say "less serious ones," exactly which sort of crimes
17 are you referring to?
18 A. Well, regular theft, breaking and entering into small shops,
19 businesses, grocery stores, that kind of thing. There were also breaches
20 of discipline, going absent without official leave, failure to carry out a
21 task, all that was processed, tried, dealt with before a military court.
22 Q. Would it be fair to say that most of the crimes that were
23 prosecuted were crimes committed against the VJ, they weren't crimes
24 against the civilian population?
25 A. I cannot tell you the ratio at this moment, but regardless of
1 whether it was a crime against the army or members of the army or against
2 civilians, it was always prosecuted. No distinction was made in that
3 sense between crimes committed against civilians and crimes committed
4 against members of the army.
5 Q. General, during the course of combat actions when a VJ officer
6 observed a member of the MUP committing a crime - and by that I mean a
7 crime against a civilian - what action would that VJ officer take? Was he
8 able to stop that crime, arrest the MUP officer? What sort of measure
9 could he take?
10 A. Anyone who tries to perpetrate a criminal offence and is seen by
11 someone else, if that someone else is a member of the army or a regular
12 civilian, it is his duty to try to prevent it. If he's not able to
13 prevent it, he has to report it to our security organ, we inform the SUP,
14 and the SUP then takes measures against such a policeman. If one of them
15 was trying to commit a crime, it is certain that he cannot be prevented in
16 it by two or three people even, let alone a single person, because the
17 person -- the one trying to commit a crime is armed.
18 Q. You said the person, it was his duty to try to prevent it, the
19 duty of the officer. Is this a legal duty of a VJ officer when he
20 observes someone, a MUP -- member of the MUP or another civilian,
21 committing a crime, does he have a legal duty to prevent it and to take
23 A. He has a legal duty to prevent if he's able to prevent. For
24 instance, hypothetically speaking, if I am somewhere where somebody's
25 trying to commit a crime and I am alone while two or three of them are
1 together trying to commit that crime, I am physically incapable of
2 preventing it. I can issue a warning; if they listen to me, fine, if not,
3 I take immediate steps to report to my superiors, to the security organs,
4 and they inform the MUP, and the MUP then organize pursuit, roadblocks,
5 does everything to apprehend them. It all depends on where the officer is
6 in the chain of command. If he's part of a platoon of a military police
7 and his command is close by, he will certainly take measures to stop it
8 there and then, but if you are alone and you have no way of stopping it,
9 it it's a different situation.
10 Q. Yes, I understand the example you're giving, if the VJ officer is
11 alone. I was asking precisely if the VJ officer is with his unit and is
12 taking part in a combat action together with members of the MUP and he
13 observes, for example, a MUP -- a member of the MUP attacking and beating
14 a civilian, is he -- does he have the legal duty to arrest that person and
15 take him away from -- back to the SUP, for example?
16 A. If he's in an area of combat action, he cannot know whether the
17 person being beaten is a civilian or a terrorist, especially if they are
18 at a distance of 50 to 100 metres away. If they are right there in front
19 of him, then of course it is his duty to grab the civilian away from the
20 policeman and protect them from the beating. It all depends on the
21 situation. It's not the same thing if he was there in the first place or
22 if he has just walked in on that scene. If all that is happening at a
23 distance, he cannot know whether the person being beaten is a terrorist
24 who had just illegally crossed the border, what he had been doing before
25 that, and what the policeman is doing, what he is reacting to. We can
1 only speculate. At any rate, all the serious crimes, murders, rapes, and
2 such have to be prevented, regardless of the situation and the
3 circumstances. But you certainly know from your experience, even better
4 than I do, that all sorts of crimes take place and each one is very
5 specific, happens under specific circumstances. I'm trying to speak in
6 general terms, though.
7 Q. Yes, I understand --
8 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm sorry to intervene.
9 Sorry, General, to bother you with this query. I appreciate what
10 you have just said, that's a good spirit. But when we saw one of your
11 answers you said that nobody shared with you the information about serious
12 crimes attributed to the VJ, but you were told about the minor crimes or
13 misdemeanours. Why was that information kept away from you or why didn't
14 you ask for it? It would become well-known that this has happened because
15 a serious crime has an impact, there's a news about it. Why was that kept
16 away from you? I mean, I couldn't understand that. I'm sorry to bother
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm certain that my security organs
19 and organs of the military police had almost the same or identical
20 information that they exchanged with the SUP, and the SUP is the
21 professional agency in charge. With the SUP, we never discussed any
22 specific cases if somebody committed a misdemeanour, stole a vehicle. We
23 discussed what we should plan, what we should do in the forthcoming
24 period, and we would discuss very serious crimes if any happened in the
25 area of responsibility. In our reports that we received, we did not see
1 any serious crimes committed by members of the VJ. Whether the SUP had
2 any such information that they kept away from us, I really cannot say.
3 MS. KRAVETZ:
4 Q. Going back to your previous answer, you said that when a crime is
5 committed right in front of the officer, the officer of course has the
6 duty to grab the civilian, take it away from the perpetrator. In -- and I
7 understand what you're saying, that it's always not clear whether the
8 victim is a civilian or not when you're engaged in combat. But if the
9 person is clearly a civilian and the VJ officer witnesses this crime, what
10 measures can that VJ officer take vis-a-vis the perpetrator? For example,
11 can he arrest him on the spot?
12 A. If he's in an area of combat action, then the person committing a
13 crime is immediately arrested. So the answer to your question is: Yes,
14 he can arrest him immediately if that is a serious crime. If the person
15 trying to commit a crime is a member of the VJ, he's taken away to
16 pre-trial custody. If he's a member of the MUP, then he's taken to the
17 MUP. But that's a hypothetical case. We never had mixed units where a
18 policeman would be next to a military policeman or a VJ member. So all
19 I'm saying is speculation, what would happen if it --
20 Q. Yes, I understand that. We're talking about a hypothetical case.
21 Thank you, General.
22 I want to move on to a different topic now about Racak.
23 Yesterday -- well, and on Friday you discussed the operation conducted by
24 the MUP in Racak, and you were shown a report signed by you, I think it's
25 Exhibit 5D1377, that you sent to the Pristina Corps command dated 17th
1 January 1999. Now, in your report you say that part of a combat group
2 that was deployed in the Stimlje area was conducting a training exercise
3 on 15th January, the day the Racak operation took place. Is that correct?
4 A. Yes. Part of the unit was undergoing combat training along those
5 routes, it is a reinforced platoon. They were training, and that unit, in
6 addition to their basic task, was supposed to prevent spillover of
7 terrorists from the Jezerska Planina to the Lipovacka Planina but in
8 addition to that to provide security along the Stimlje-Suva Reka road and
9 they were carrying out training. That group was up there in accordance
10 with the agreement, namely it was supposed to be about 150 men.
11 MS. KRAVETZ: I see my colleague.
12 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think that the
13 question put by my learned friend is a bit imprecise. I think that the
14 witness spoke very specifically, not Stimlje but Dulje. Let's see what
15 the witness says. Thank you.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The training took place at Dulje,
17 and as far as I can see here, if it can be enlarged a bit, please. --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you go on, the witness was dealing with the
19 matter, he's able to explain himself clearly, and matters such as the one
20 you've just raised, Mr. Cepic, can be dealt with in re-examination.
21 Please continue, Ms. Kravetz.
22 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. General, you had been informed by the chief of the Urosevac SUP
24 that the Racak -- that the MUP was going to conduct an anti-terrorist
25 operation in Racak on 15th January; is that correct?
1 A. Yes, yes, that's correct. He called me to his staff and informed
2 me that he had had approval for this plan of anti-terrorist action, in
3 view of the terrorists who had lethally wounded his policemen on the
4 Stimlje-Urosevac road a few days before that.
5 Q. You said that your unit had been -- was deployed there in Dulje
6 heights and had been deployed there for several weeks prior to this
7 incident in Racak on 15 January; is that correct?
8 A. Your statement is only partially correct, not several weeks. That
9 unit was there from April 1998, from April 1998, and it had not moved from
10 that area. According to the agreement, it was there.
11 Q. But only a part of the combat group that was authorised to --
12 whose deployment was authorised in Dulje heights was taking part in this
13 combat exercise, training exercise, that you describe in your report. Is
14 that correct?
15 A. Just a moment, please, let me explain this. This is one combat
16 group with a command at the Dulje pass. It is a reinforced company;
17 according to the agreement, it's about 150 men. That combat group, we
18 call it number 1, was in two localities, located in two different places,
19 in the upper part, at the Dulje pass where the command was, and that is
20 where training took place. The other locality is near Canovica Brdo so
21 not in Stimlje, by the road going from Stimlje to Dulje and Suva Reka
22 there is the smaller part of that combat group. Within that combat group
23 there was a subgroup, if we can call it that conditionally speaking, that
24 is a mobile unit which secured military transports, columns, provided
25 physical security for them from Stimlje to Suva Reka and back. If one
1 group would go escorting the column, if another group came, from this
2 group, from Canovica Brdo that is to say the smaller group, immediately
3 two or three combat vehicles with wheels go and accompany the next group.
4 Q. Yes, I understand. You've explained that during your testimony.
5 I wanted to know what was the location of this particular group that was
6 carrying out a training exercise. They were in the vicinity of Racak,
7 weren't they, General?
8 A. The training exercise was being carried out by the combat group in
9 Dulje, where the command was. They were carrying out tactical exercises
10 from squad level up to platoon level, perhaps up to company level. That
11 is where this organized training took place; otherwise, in principle, in
12 the army there is incessant training with equipment, but that is where the
13 training exercise was taking place, in the area of Dulje, not the village
14 of Dulje, but Dulje pass - that is to say in the mountains of Dulje.
15 Q. And this sort of training exercise had been authorised by you?
16 You were aware that it was taking place?
17 A. Certainly. Training takes place in a planned fashion. The
18 commanding officers have their own schedule, and all the training
19 exercises have to be approved and they were approved.
20 Q. But prior to conducting or giving the authorisation for this
21 training exercise, you did not notify the KVM, did you, General, that your
22 unit was going to be conducting a training exercise that morning, the 15th
24 A. The training that takes place in three -- in up to three vehicles
25 were not supposed to be notified or announced, whereas larger-scale
1 exercises had to be announced.
2 Q. General, we had the testimony in this court of General Maisonneuve
3 from the KVM, and he clearly stated that this deployment of your group
4 that was conducting this training exercise was an unauthorised [Realtime
5 transcript read in error "authorised"] deployment out of barracks. Would
6 you agree with General Maisonneuve?
7 A. I do not agree with General Maisonneuve at all because we have
8 approval in writing as to where this unit is, then practically I was
9 deceived by the corps command and the corps command was deceived by the
10 army commander, perhaps the General Staff even. Furthermore, I think that
11 that unit at Dulje was visited at least ten times, and never ever were
12 there any critical remarks made -- or perhaps at the outset it was too
13 big, but then when it was reduced to allowed levels, then the gentleman
14 from this commission even counted the soldiers and the pieces of equipment
15 there. So that's where the only problem was, and this went on for, say,
16 about ten days or so. From that moment onwards, there were no problems
17 with that unit, especially not in terms of their personnel levels,
18 equipment levels, armament levels, not even Mr. Maisonneuve personally. I
19 don't see how he can now say that they were at an unlawful level. Had
20 this been unlawful, he would have been protesting and there would have
21 been a reaction, but this unit was up there, as I said, in continuity from
22 April 1998 onwards involving different compositions, sometimes bigger,
23 sometimes smaller.
24 Q. Do you recall that General Maisonneuve met on the day after the
25 Racak incident occurred on 16th January with a liaison officer from your
1 brigade? Do you recall that, Colonel Petrovic, and the records of that
2 meeting --
3 MS. KRAVETZ: This is, Your Honours, Exhibit 1771.
4 Q. -- clearly indicate General Maisonneuve complaining that this was
5 an unauthorised deployment out of barracks.
6 A. Just a small correction straight away. Petrovic is a
7 lieutenant-colonel, not a general. He was assigned from my unit to be
8 involved in cooperation with the mission. It would be a good thing if we
9 had a look at the document itself; however, I'm telling you. That unit
10 was inspected so often that it is simply inexplicable to hear that now,
11 how come is that unit there. You have the documents, I don't really.
12 What units were supposed to be engaged in protection. I know that there
13 were three in the territory of Kosovo and Metohija, not taking into
14 account the in-depth security ones. Lapusnik, Volujac, and Dulje were the
15 groups that were assigned.
16 Q. Can we have a look --
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you move on, in line 9 of page 16, the word
18 should be unauthorised, not authorised.
19 Yes, please continue.
20 MS. KRAVETZ: Can we have Exhibit 1771 on the screen. I think
21 this is the incorrect exhibit. One moment, Your Honour.
22 [Prosecution counsel confer]
23 MS. KRAVETZ:
24 Q. While we find that, the exhibit number, General, you had said that
25 the combat unit that was carrying out this training exercise fired on
1 Belanica; is that correct?
2 A. No, no, that's not what I said. I did not even say that they were
3 carrying out a training exercise, as you said. I did not even say that
4 they were firing at the village of Belanica. Please look at the
5 transcript and see that that is not what happened. There was firing at a
6 plateau sort of close to the village Belanica, but there was no training
8 Q. I'm not sure I understood your answer, but we can go back to the
9 document that I wanted to show you, this is P4020, this is the record of
10 the --
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, in -- on page 15 at line 12 your answer is
12 recorded as: "The training exercise was being carried out by the combat
13 group in Dulje. They were carrying out tactical exercises from squad
14 level up to platoon level, perhaps up to company level. That is where
15 this organized training took place."
16 Now you say it wasn't a training exercise. Is there some mistake
17 in the earlier answer?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I do apologise. This
19 is just one job, one unit, one time-line. The lady said that in Stimlje
20 we were carrying out training exercises and firing at the village of
21 Belanica; that is not interrelated. These are two separate things, and
22 physically it is separate. There's a 15-kilometre distance involved. It
23 does remain that training took place there, a tactical exercise at the
24 level of a reinforced platoon.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
1 MS. KRAVETZ:
2 Q. General, I understand that this combat group that was deployed in
3 the Dulje heights was authorised according to the October agreements, but
4 weren't you under the obligation to notify the KVM before carrying out any
5 type of manoeuvres, for example, a training exercise?
6 A. All exercises that take place at a level higher than that of a
7 platoon had to be notified to the KVM.
8 Q. And in this case - and this is what I was asking you earlier -
9 there was no notification? You did not notify the KVM that you were going
10 to be conducting these operations, these what you call a training
12 A. All this training and exercises up to platoon level we did not
13 send notification on that; from platoon level onwards, we did, through
14 liaison officers, of course.
15 MS. KRAVETZ: Can we now have --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Perhaps I'm misunderstanding this, and it's
17 important that you clarify just now. The passage I quoted to you a moment
18 ago referred to this exercise I think as being perhaps up to company
19 level. Have I misunderstood that?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was a platoon, it was not a
21 company. I do apologise. Up to company level is what we were allowed to
22 do in general at brigade level; above company level, we never did anything
23 for several years.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm unclear about this, Ms. Kravetz. If you can
25 clarify it, it would be helpful. I would like to know the size of the
1 group that we are discussing and something about the terms of the
2 agreement that applies to it. Perhaps that's already in evidence, but it
3 seems to me quite important.
4 MS. KRAVETZ: Very well, Your Honour.
5 Q. General, how many men or what was the size of the combat group
6 that was carrying out a combat -- a training exercise on 15th January
7 1999? How many men were involved?
8 A. You put this question to me, but I cannot give practically an
9 answer because you said training exercise and combat. That's not the same
10 thing. A training exercise is training soldiers in given actions, whereas
11 combat is carrying out combat activities.
12 Q. I know. I maybe misspoke. I'm just speaking about the training
13 exercise, the one that we're concerned with here. How many men were
14 involved in this training exercise that you described in your report?
15 A. Well, I could not say exactly until I have a look at the report.
16 It's been quite a while, hasn't it, so I cannot tell you the exact number
17 and I cannot recall.
18 Q. We can have a look at the report, this is 5D1377. While that is
19 being brought up, do you recall if any vehicles were involved in this
20 training exercise?
21 A. I recall that there were vehicles that were used in these
22 exercises, rather, in this training.
23 Q. What type of vehicles?
24 A. Well, different ones. It was a combination. I cannot say
25 exactly. Combat vehicles, at any rate, that were in that area. They
1 weren't passenger vehicles because soldiers are trained on combat
3 Q. So we have the passage there.
4 MS. KRAVETZ: I think you need to scroll down on the B/C/S.
5 Q. Have you had a chance to read it, General?
6 A. I'm still reading. I haven't finished yet. I've had a look.
7 Q. Now that you've had a chance to look at your report, do you recall
8 how many men were involved in this training exercise? How big was this
9 group involved in the training exercise?
10 A. Well, if it pertains to the 15th of January, that date, it is a
11 mechanised platoon on March, and a platoon can be from 27 to 35, 45 men.
12 Q. And you said that would also include vehicles?
13 A. Yes, without vehicles one could not do it really. It has to be
14 combat vehicles, rather, those that are used for training. It doesn't
15 always have to be combat vehicles. Usually there can be a combination,
16 combat vehicles, motor vehicles, depending on whether the training is for
17 one special duty, well, then it's one type of vehicle, either tanks or
18 APCs, or whatever. But if it's several units that are being trained at
19 the same place at a given point in time, then it's a smaller number of
20 vehicles with different VSs, that is to say different military evidentiary
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Jelic, earlier in this report there is an
23 account of events on the 14th of January, where the training was
24 apparently by a reinforced tank company. You'll see that in the second
25 paragraph. That's a bigger group than the platoon we are talking about;
1 is that correct?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it's a bigger group, a stronger
3 unit that was carrying out training along the route referred to here.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: How big?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] A reinforced tank company, a tank
6 company is around 44, 45 men.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: And what does "reinforced" mean?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Reinforced means when an additional
9 piece of equipment is added to that unit, regardless of what it is,
10 reconnaissance or a Praga or something, that is the customary term used.
11 It says "reinforced" then.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: It doesn't refer to additional men being added to
13 the company?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it means not only, say, a
15 vehicle, but also the crew accompanying that vehicle or piece of
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Would the fact that that exercise was to take place
18 out of barracks require to be notified to the KVM?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, certainly, and the KVM was
20 notified of this exercise, that's the 14th.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Kravetz.
22 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you.
23 Q. Did this exercise take place on the 15th involve the use of tanks
24 or heavy weaponry?
25 A. What it says here is that a mechanised platoon was used.
1 Therefore, a mechanised platoon can be up to three combat vehicles;
2 however, a mechanised platoon can sometimes have minus one/plus one, as we
3 say, that's to say you can take away an APC or add a tank or a Praga or
4 something similar to that. I don't see here that there was anything else
5 except a mechanised platoon in that period of time. I cannot remember
6 myself, but without looking at the entire document I cannot say.
7 MS. KRAVETZ: Can we now --
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, what is a 12.7-millimetre PAM?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] On every combat vehicle there is an
10 anti-aircraft machine-gun, 12.7-millimetres, on all combat vehicles, PAM,
11 anti-aircraft machine-gun.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
13 Ms. Kravetz.
14 MS. KRAVETZ: Could we now look at Exhibit P420.
15 Q. General, this is a record, a note, of the meeting that took place
16 the day after the events in Racak, and as you will see on the top of the
17 page among those persons here were Lieutenant-Colonel Petrovic;
18 Brigadier-General Maisonneuve; and the deputy head of the Pristina office
19 Mr. Gilbertson; and an interpreter. If we can scroll down on the page in
20 the B/C/S and on the English, we have General Maisonneuve there who's
21 marked with an M says: "There are tanks and there are artillery outside
22 Stimlje and the artillery is ready to fire towards Dulje, what is up?"
23 And Lieutenant-Colonel Petrovic says: "Normal tasks.
24 "What is 'normal'?
1 And General Maisonneuve says: "Unauthorised move from barracks!"
2 Do you see that, General?
3 A. I see it. Perhaps it can be zoomed in a bit, but I do remember
4 this report presented to me by Lieutenant-Colonel Petrovic. I think it
5 would be best if you looked at the 8th or the 4th of January, 1999. The
6 report of the commission that had toured there, precisely that group, and
7 it says there that weren't any critical remarks.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Let's allow the counsel to ask the questions and
9 you answer the ones that are asked.
10 Ms. Kravetz.
11 MS. KRAVETZ:
12 Q. General Maisonneuve testified here and he told the Court that
13 this -- that your unit that was deployed there in the Stimlje area was, in
14 fact, providing fire support for the MUP operation that took place in
15 Racak on 15 January. Isn't that correct, General?
16 A. That is not correct.
17 Q. And General Maisonneuve told the Court that several of his teams
18 had observed a tank and Praga on the hills overlooking the village of
19 Racak on the day of the attack, these are VJ, and he said that there were
20 both the VJ and the MUP had been located on the hills overlooking Racak
21 for several weeks prior to the attack. Is that true, General?
22 A. Well, you've just said here that they went out a few weeks before
23 and in this document it says one week. This confirms that the units had
24 been there for months, not weeks. The units were at Canovica Brdo, which
25 is to the north-west of Stimlje, which is some 300 or 500 metres
1 altogether, in a wooded area. No superior was provided to the MUP forces
2 by the army during the anti-terrorist action, nor did the army have a plan
3 for any such activity. Even had it wanted to, it could not have done it
4 ad hoc because the MUP forces were already in the village, they had
5 entered in the early morning. I exclude the possibility that the army was
6 in Stimlje.
7 Q. But it says so in your report, doesn't it, General, on page 2 --
8 JUDGE BONOMY: If we're departing from the document on the screen,
9 it should be observed that Petrovic in response to the question whether
10 the move from the barracks was unauthorised claimed that it was
12 And now we can return to 5D1377.
13 MS. KRAVETZ:
14 Q. On page 2 of your report you say that part of the Combat Group 1
15 was in the general area of Stimlje, Canovica Brdo where they engaged in
16 regular combat --
17 A. Could we zoom in here? I can't see.
18 Q. Yes, we can.
19 MS. KRAVETZ: This would be 5D1377. Second page of the exhibit.
20 Q. Do you see the top of the page where it says that the brigade --
21 part of the brigade group was in the general area of Stimlje?
22 A. Yes, I see that.
23 Q. But you just told us that you exclude the possibility that the
24 army was in Stimlje. They were, in fact, carrying out an exercise in the
25 area of Stimlje, weren't they, this combat group?
1 A. I have to explain what this means, the area of the unit. It is
2 marked with three or four points. In the area of the village of Stimlje,
3 or rather, the municipality of Stimlje does not mean in Stimlje; it means
4 in the area of. And that is Canovica Brdo, overlooking Stimlje in a
5 pinewood. Everything else is bare, the ground all around is bare, it's
6 not wooded.
7 Q. What I don't understand, General, is why if you had been informed
8 that the MUP was going to carry out an anti-terrorist operation of the
9 scale of Racak on 15th January, did you authorise one of your combat
10 groups to carry out training in the vicinity of Racak, in the Stimlje
11 area? Could you explain that?
12 A. Well, I'm trying to explain. On the road from Stimlje towards
13 Crnoljevo, on the left-hand side, that's to the south, there is the
14 village of Racak; and a little more to the north of it, 4 or 5 kilometres
15 away, is Rance, and then there's Crnoljevo and so on. On the opposite
16 side is the municipal village or commune of Stimlje with all the
17 structures in that little town. And we were in the broader general area
18 of Stimlje, that's what it says here, in the general area of Stimlje. So
19 we were physically quite separate, both from the road and from the
20 activities where the MUP was carrying out its activities. It is in the
21 vicinity, but we had been there since April 1998.
22 Q. But why did you go ahead with the training exercise when you had
23 been informed that this operation was going to take place in Racak?
24 Why -- is this just coincidental that it happened the exact same day at
25 the time the Racak operation was taking place, is it, General?
1 A. Well, if you look at combat training, first of all it's not
2 delayed if there's activity going on in the vicinity; there's only
3 increased security and alertness in the unit. One never gives up training
4 unless the unit is attacked or the temperatures are exceptionally low.
5 Training was carried out here, if you see what this is about, combat
6 training, topic 1, observation, monitoring from a combat vehicle by day
7 and by night. This means that you are training soldiers how to observe by
8 day and by night. That is static. You can see that in the first
9 paragraph on page 2.
10 Q. The truth, General, is that your unit was based in that area and
11 deployed there that morning of 15th January to provide support to the MUP
12 in the operation carried out in Racak; isn't that true?
13 A. That is not true. It is only true that the unit was in the area
14 from April 1998.
15 Q. Very well. Let's move on to a different topic, General.
16 During your evidence yesterday you said that VJ units under your
17 command participated in a joint action with the MUP in the village of
18 Kotlina on 24 --
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I just interrupt. I'm sorry I'm a bit slow
20 here, but let me interrupt you just briefly. And can we have the document
21 just back on the screen. It's a simple question, but I need the document
23 In the top paragraph, the very first line of your B/C/S version of
24 this exhibit, page 2, it says: "Part of the battle group is in the
25 general area of Stimlje ..." And then in brackets "(Canovica Brdo)." Now,
1 is that another name for Stimlje?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Canovica Brdo, "Brdo" means hill;
3 that is a slope stretching in the north-south direction near this little
4 town of Stimlje.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 Ms. Kravetz.
7 MS. KRAVETZ:
8 Q. This is hill, Canovica Brdo, was not far removed from the area of
9 Racak, was it, General?
10 A. It's about a kilometre away. They are separated by the road and
11 part of the little town of Stimlje.
12 Q. But you could fire from that location in the direction of Racak,
13 the outskirts of Racak, couldn't you, General?
14 A. No, because between this hill, Canovica Brdo, there is a slope on
15 the left-hand side of the Stimlje-Crnoljevo-Dulje road, and from there you
16 cannot see the village of Racak. You can see just a few houses in the
17 distance, some dozens houses, but practically you cannot see the rest
18 because it's protected by that feature which is located between the
19 village of Racak and Canovica hill or Canovica Brdo.
20 Q. If forces, KLA forces, were heading into the village of Racak,
21 they would be passing through this area that was visible from the hill,
22 from Canovica hill; isn't that correct?
23 A. From the road going from Stimlje towards Dulje, the southern part
24 where the village of Racak and the other villages, Malopoljce and so on
25 are located, from there some 500 or 700 metres away or maybe a kilometre
1 away are the foothills of the Jezerska mountains. It's a wooded area, the
2 tracks -- mountain tracks are very rough, and one can only pass through
3 there on foot or with carts perhaps or tractors, nothing else.
4 Q. Although you could not see the village of Racak, you could fire
5 tanks or mortar fire in that general direction, couldn't you?
6 A. There were no mortars on those positions. There were tanks and
7 there were 122-millimetres howitzers. Howitzers cannot fire at that range
8 because of their technical features. A tank can fire horizontally up to
9 minus 5 degrees or plus 25 degrees. When it doesn't see the target, it
10 cannot aim. The other vehicles that were there were light mobile vehicles
11 used to escort columns or perhaps defend the area from attack, the area of
12 Canovica hill, that is.
13 Q. Very well, General. I'll move on. I was putting a question to
14 you earlier. You said -- about the village of Kotlina. You said that VJ
15 units under your command participated in a joint action with the MUP in
16 the village of Kotlina on 24th March 1999. Do you recall that?
17 A. Yes. In one area they were providing support to the MUP forces
18 from the south and west side.
19 Q. This was an action planned and ordered by you, wasn't it, General?
20 A. The action planned for the needs of the army, that was a
21 coincidence. On that day there was an attack on the army, there was a
22 response, and the commander immediately decided what should be done and he
23 put that on a map and issued an order. He drew up the document.
24 Q. What do you mean when you say the action planned for the needs of
25 the army, that was a coincidence. Which coincidence are you referring to?
1 A. On that very day, the most difficult activity had been planned,
2 that is, mobilisation and taking up positions; and that had been planned
3 beforehand. The routing of the terrorist forces had been planned
4 beforehand. However, because of other priority tasks, not all the forces
5 and not all the means were engaged as planned, to rout this terrorist
7 Q. But yesterday you said, General, that this action, joint MUP and
8 VJ action that took place in Kotlina on 24th March, was an action that was
9 ordered by you. Do you recall you were shown a copy of the order for this
10 action? Do you agree with that?
11 A. Yes. Reduced forces and means were used to carry out this action.
12 The plan was created for the army. We did not create the plan for the
13 MUP; that was done by the MUP forces. All that was done was coordination
14 with the MUP forces.
15 Q. General, you were shown also yesterday a report, it was assigned
16 Exhibit Number IC143, which provided details of this action, including the
17 number of casualties that resulted from this joint operation. Do you
18 recall that?
19 A. Yes, I remember, I've seen that, yes.
20 Q. General, the evidence before this Chamber is that a group of
21 approximately 150 soldiers and policemen entered the village of Kotlina,
22 captured a group of around 20 men, beat them, and threw them down to wells
23 on the hills of Kotlina. They later threw explosives down the wells and
24 these persons perished as a result of the explosions. Are you aware of
25 that incident taking place in Kotlina?
1 A. I heard about that incident from the media and later on following
2 the proceedings at this Tribunal. I had never heard of that before that.
3 My officers and men were not there, so they were not able to give me this
5 Q. How do you explain, General, that these persons --
6 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm sorry, I'm sorry to intervene. It's a very
7 big incident and you are kindly telling us that you -- that the men were
8 not there to inform you, but did you make an inquiry about it, if anything
9 like that was being said? It is a very significant thing. Thank you.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In that period it was not a topical
11 issue, it was not generally known, at least in military circles. We did
12 not receive that information from the SUP forces either. We were not
13 informed that something like that had happened. As time went on, there
14 were reports in the media intimating activities by the judiciary, but to
15 this day it is not clear to me how so much of that could be found in that
16 area. Our security organs and our command personnel did not have a single
17 piece of information about this. I made attempts to get more information
18 from the chief of the MUP. He told me that forensic technicians had been
19 sent there and an investigating judge, that they had conducted an
20 investigation and that the legal proceedings would be instituted, but he
21 said that only victims of fighting, casualties in fighting, with the
22 security forces were found. I did not have that information nor did I
23 have any information to pass on to my superior command. It was only
24 information I gleaned in passing. Our military police organs did not go
25 there, nor did our military investigating judge go there.
1 JUDGE CHOWHAN: But -- sorry, General, I apologise bothering you
2 again, but what was the truth about the story? I mean, you belonged to
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the closest to the truth is
5 that in the fighting, because there was a build-up of terrorist forces
6 there. According to our information and from what I heard witnesses of
7 the other side say, there were about 600 to 700 terrorists there. In the
8 combat with those units, which was very fierce and there was a great
9 density of men and weapons, and the percentage of casualties in view of
10 all this was very low. I assume that these were people who lost their
11 lives in the fighting and probably in the combat activities there was
12 collateral damage. So it's possible that somebody who was innocent was
13 also killed as a collateral victim.
14 MS. KRAVETZ: May I continue?
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Kravetz.
16 MS. KRAVETZ:
17 Q. General, there is forensic evidence before this Court that the --
18 these persons that died on that day died from explosions and their bodies
19 were found inside pits, water-holes, on the side of a slope. You would
20 agree with me, given your experience in the army, that even if these
21 persons had been combatants from the other side, KLA, it is not legitimate
22 to target enemy combatants in this way and dispose of their bodies down a
23 water-hole or a well and blow up the bodies with explosives? That is not
24 a legitimate military action, is it, General?
25 A. Well, that's bizarre, it's humiliating. For those who do such
1 things, it's incredible. I condemn such actions if anyone did something
2 like that, to kill people, or if they were killed in the fighting, to
3 throw them into pits, if there were such pits - I don't know if there were
4 or not. I think this is inhuman and inhumane, and I truly condemn that
5 regardless of who did it if they did.
6 Q. And how do you explain, General, that this inhumane act or action,
7 as you called it, took place in an area where your troops were deployed
8 during the course of an action that you had ordered in Kotlina? How do
9 you explain that, General?
10 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic.
12 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I don't know where my learned friend
13 got this information that the General ordered this action. He gave clear
14 answers in the course of yesterday's examination and he did not confirm
15 that his troops were in the village itself. He explained exactly where
16 they were positioned and what they were doing. I don't want to say
17 anymore to avoid leading. Thank you.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: You accept that he ordered the action on the 24th
19 of March?
20 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] No, no, we do not accept that, and in
21 my re-direct I will present some evidence to clarify this point. Thank
23 MS. KRAVETZ: Your Honour, it's at page 18980 of the transcript
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm sorry? He's already said today that units
1 under his command participated in a joint action with the MUP in the
2 village of Kotlina on the 24th of March. You can deal with it in reaction
3 if you wish, Mr. Cepic, but there's nothing wrong with the question that's
4 been posed.
5 Please continue, Ms. Kravetz.
6 MS. KRAVETZ: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. General, do I have to repeat my question or can you answer it?
8 A. Would you please repeat your question.
9 Q. I was asking you -- I'm sorry - how can you explain that such an
10 inhumane act, as you described it, took place in a village, Kotlina, on
11 the day that you were carrying actions -- an action ordered by you with
12 your units and the MUP? How do you explain that such an act took place on
13 that day where your units were deployed?
14 A. First of all, my units, as I said, were defending their positions
15 and that was the anti-terrorist action that they carried out. It was
16 defensive because there had been a reduction and the order issued before
17 that was never implemented because there was another priority task which I
18 have already described. Secondly, I was not in charge of that action. We
19 were only defending positions, and it was on that axis that we grouped
20 those forces and means in the direction of the terrorists throughout them.
21 On the other side, on the north side and on the east side, there were MUP
22 forces which entered the village. Who, how, and if this atrocious action
23 took place, if that's how it was, I condemn it; however, it's most likely
24 that those were persons killed in the fighting. Who did what in there I
25 don't know. We did not have our own investigating judge there. It was
1 the MUP that went in there. It was the MUP that brought an investigating
2 judge and forensic technicians to carry out an on-site investigation. I
3 have no reason to disbelieve the judiciary organs.
4 Q. General, you ordered that action to take place, didn't you, so you
5 were in charge of the action that was taking place in Kotlina on that day,
6 weren't you, General? If you order an action to take place, wouldn't you
7 be the person in charge of such an action?
8 A. I ordered my forces which were there in that period to carry out
9 that part. I did not enter the village, and you have that in the reports.
10 I was not in command of the MUP forces. They their own chain of command
11 through the MUP, through the staff, and they agreed with their own. The
12 MUP was not resubordinated to us, it was not under our command, and we
13 could not issue orders to them. As you can see we did not receive reports
14 from them. Had they been resubordinated to us, they would have had to
15 submit reports to us.
16 Q. Are you familiar, General, with the area of Kotlina, the
17 geographical area of Kotlina, where it is located?
18 A. Well, that is south of Kacanik and north, north-west from
19 Djeneral Jankovic in a mountainous area, some 3, 4 kilometres from the
20 main road going from Djeneral Jankovic towards Kacanik.
21 Q. Kotlina's located in a valley, isn't it, General?
22 A. Yes, yes.
23 Q. You said your troops were at approximately a kilometre, a
24 kilometre and a half away from the actual town of Kotlina?
25 A. Yes. The combat group that was there, immediately after approval
1 was given for combat groups to engage in securing the border behind the
2 line, those groups had been there for some months.
3 Q. Given the layout of Kotlina and the fact that it's situated in a
4 valley, it wouldn't have been necessary for your troops to actually be in
5 the village to be able to observe the men being taken away to the pits and
6 hear the sound of the explosions and see the smoke billowing from these
7 wells or water-holes, wouldn't it, General? It wouldn't have been
8 necessary for them to be in the village.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic.
10 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I don't know on what basis my learned
11 friend is making this last assertion.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, she's making it on the basis that the town is
13 in a valley, and we do know that there's been evidence about the location
14 of these pits and that much can be said about it. We've seen photographs
15 that bear to be the area. The witness is familiar with the area and he
16 can deal with the question.
17 Please continue, Ms. Kravetz.
18 MS. KRAVETZ:
19 Q. General, would you answer my question.
20 A. Well, you see, I've said that this area is away from the village.
21 The meaning of the word "Kotlina" is depression; however, the village
22 itself is not in a valley, it's a hilly, mountainous terrain. If you look
23 at the map you will see that it's jagged, rugged terrain with clusters of
24 houses in never more than two, three, four in a group. The village itself
25 is scattered. The unit that was attacked from east and south, the unit
1 that had received approval to engage in anti-terrorist action was able to
2 see always only a part of the village, not even one-fourth of the village,
3 just one small segment. It's rugged, disorganized, unstructured
4 settlement with no access roads, and the peaks are over 1.000 metres.
5 Sometimes through binoculars they would be able to observe part of the
6 houses, but they could certainly not see everything that was going on in
7 the village.
8 Q. But precisely, General, if there are peaks around the village and
9 the village is in a valley and there are large explosions that blew up
10 these around 20 bodies in the wells. This would be something that would
11 be heard anywhere around the village of Kotlina. Even if your units had
12 not had a complete view, they would have been able to hear the explosions;
13 isn't that correct, General?
14 A. The units that were located there did not go to observe who is
15 doing what. You have to leave that peak somehow with combat vehicles.
16 You cannot go climbing --
17 Q. [Previous translation continues]...
18 A. -- mountains, you go left and right avoiding obstacles.
19 Q. That wasn't my question. I was asking if your units, as you say
20 did not enter the village, would they have been able to hear the sounds of
21 the explosions at the water-holes, at these wells where the bodies were
22 blown up. They would have, wouldn't they?
23 A. Well, if all the vehicles were turned off, if no engines were
24 running, if all the equipment was off, then maybe they would be able to
25 hear it. All the equipment requires the wearing of helmets that protect
1 from excessive noise. If someone was outside not wearing that noise
2 protection helmet, then perhaps they would have been able to hear that
3 kind of sound.
4 Q. Very well, General. Let's move on. You said in your testimony on
5 Friday that the population of your area of responsibility was moving out
6 of the area mainly due to pressure from the KLA and due to the fact that
7 NATO was trying to create an easier passage for land forces. Do you
8 recall saying that? That's at page 18934 of the transcript.
9 A. I remember that. There were more reasons in addition to that,
10 such as financing of the KLA. I would also add that the population was
11 moving out, regardless of ethnicity, towards Macedonia or towards the
12 interior of Serbia. The fear of the NATO aggression was great and people
13 were moving out. If bombs are falling on a daily basis all around your
14 home, it's natural that you would be afraid. People went wherever they
15 had family and some of them even went nowhere into complete uncertainty.
16 Q. General, we have heard evidence in this case from
17 General Smiljanic from the air force, who said that the area that was most
18 heavily bombed in Kosovo was the area of the border with Macedonia and
19 Albania. Do you agree with this statement from General Smiljanic?
20 A. Yes, those two border stretches suffered the fiercest strikes by
21 NATO aviation, and that was not accidental. NATO troops were already in
22 Macedonia and we were expecting a ground invasion. In addition to that,
23 you have the developments along the normal routes used by the terrorist
24 organization from Albania and from Macedonia. If you look at our reports
25 from the 25th of March until the end of May, when the Kumanovo Agreement
1 was signed, there's almost not a single day when a village, town, or
2 barracks were not targeted by air-strikes. I said over 400 projectiles
3 were launched on such a small area, and that was the main cause of
5 Q. General, if the population was fleeing due to the NATO bombings,
6 for example, from the municipality of Urosevac, why would they be heading
7 directly where the NATO bombs were falling, which you just said was at the
8 border? Why would they be heading directly in the direction of the bomb?
9 Does that make sense to you?
10 A. Well, that does make sense. I didn't mention just Macedonia.
11 People fled also towards the interior of Serbia. They went both south and
12 north --
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Let's leave the interior of Serbia out of it. Just
14 deal with the question about the Macedonian and, indeed, Albanian borders
15 that you've referred to.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Right --
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Why would people go in that direction if that's
18 where the bombs were falling?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The existing roads, the two existing
20 roads, were not targeted, they were not destroyed. There are four or five
21 bridges there, not a single one was damaged. So it was practical and
22 practicable to use those roads to move out. The only things that were
23 targeted were villages to the left and right of the roads. I'm not simply
24 telling you a story I made up; I'm telling you about the telegrams that
25 went up to the corps command as far as the moving out of people is
1 concerned. As for the rest, it's natural for units to be on first defence
2 lines, and those units were meant to be destroyed and at least removed
3 from the area.
4 MS. KRAVETZ:
5 Q. [Previous translation continues]... I'm just talking about the
6 civilian population. You're saying that they went in the direction of the
7 Macedonian border because the roads had been -- had not been bombed. But
8 wouldn't they be heading directly where the bombs were falling, which is
9 the border with Macedonia? You just told us that was the area that was
10 most heavily bombed. Wouldn't they be heading directly in the direction
11 of fire, of danger?
12 A. You know what? I cannot speak like an amateur, like a dilettante
13 that the border was not targeted as a line. General Smiljanic told you
14 and I'm telling you based on documents that the border belt was targeted,
15 that's a belt up to 10 kilometres deep, that was the main target of the
16 NATO. People used roads that were not destroyed. Bridges were not
17 destroyed, and even before the NATO air-strikes the KLA persuaded people
18 to move out towards Macedonia. At first, before the aggression, they
19 would go from the border to Urosevac, and then during the aggression back.
20 There were cases even during the air-strikes that people went to
21 Macedonia, reached Urosevac, and then after two days of fierce bombing
22 they would go back. They had to run to save their skin.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic.
24 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] At page 40, line 12, it should read:
25 It's natural for the units to be on first defence lines.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
2 MS. KRAVETZ:
3 Q. The truth, General, is that the civilian population of the
4 municipalities of Kacanik and Urosevac were not fleeing because of the
5 NATO bombing or ground attack that was expected; they were fleeing because
6 forces under your command and forces of the MUP were expelling the
7 population. Isn't that true, General?
8 A. That is not true. My forces never expelled anyone. They were in
9 their defence areas, and they only responded to direct attacks, except for
10 those who were in the border belt directly. There was no expulsion
11 organized by the army, and I suppose by the MUP either. I can be quite
12 certain that there was none on the part of the army.
13 MS. KRAVETZ: Your Honour, I think it's time for the break.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: We'll break now.
15 Again, Mr. Jelic, please go with the usher, and we will resume at
17 [The witness stands down]
18 --- Recess taken at 10.46 a.m.
19 --- On resuming at 11.16 a.m.
20 [The witness takes the stand]
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Kravetz.
22 MS. KRAVETZ: Your Honour, I have no further questions for this
23 witness at this stage.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
25 Questioned by the Court:
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Jelic, a couple of matters you may help me
2 with. Are you familiar to the extent with which Belgrade was bombed?
3 A. From the information I received during the war through media
4 reports that were very poor because of the destruction of repeaters,
5 Belgrade was struck several times including several vital facilities,
6 beginning with radio television building, several bridges, the Chinese
7 embassy, and the surrounding military installations in the vicinity of
8 Belgrade. I don't have specific data, but I know basically the
9 installations and features that were targeted.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Can you clarify for me what you've
11 described as your brigade's area of responsibility. Just tell me again
12 what that area was during the war?
13 A. The area of responsibility of the 243rd Mechanised Brigade was
14 from the front line towards the Republic of Macedonia, its length was 88
15 kilometres; in the east, from Vitina to Mirosavlje village behind the
16 line; in the west, mount Sar, Nerodimska mountains, Jezerska mountains,
17 and the Dulje pass, that's another 70 kilometres.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: How far inland from -- well, that's the wrong
19 expression. How far into Kosovo from the border did your area of
20 responsibility extend? Just give me the distance rather than the
21 description of the territory.
22 A. Depending on the line, around 30 kilometres inland, into the
23 territory of Serbia.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Before the war was your area of responsibility
25 different from the one you've just described?
1 A. Before the war our area of responsibility was laid out a bit
2 differently, it was slightly smaller. For instance, from Vitina to Dulje,
3 that was the boundary, it encompassed Urosevac municipality, Strpce,
4 Stimlje, and Kacanik.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: In places did it then also extend up to 30
6 kilometres from the bound -- from the border?
7 A. Yes, reckoning with the 57th Border Battalion, which before the
8 war was not part of my brigade, it was an element of the corps. But in
9 principle, that's correct.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: When you speak of in-depth defence of the border,
11 are you describing your activity throughout the area of responsibility?
12 A. In-depth defence is arranged by positions and the units behind the
13 lines in-depth have their own positions and they answer to me, so I'm
14 responsible for the entire condition of units on combat positions in the
15 areas of defence of the respective units, battalions, artillery
16 battalions, that's my responsibility, for the situation in units, their
17 combat-readiness, and their situation, the state of affairs in the area
18 where the unit is located.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: In the period prior to the war, what was the
20 maximum extent of the border belt?
21 A. The maximum extent of the border belt was 100 metres first before
22 it was increased to 5 kilometres by decision of the federal government.
23 The border belt was extended by decision of the federal government because
24 of the spillover of terrorist forces, smuggling of arms, and various
25 terrorist activities.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: I just want the information I'm asking for at this
2 stage. So the maximum extent or breadth of the border belt was 5
3 kilometres; is that correct?
4 A. In the first stage it was 5 kilometres, and it was later extended
5 to 10 kilometres.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. We've heard various accounts of the
7 difference between the powers of the VJ within the border belt and outwith
8 the border belt. If I can turn now to wartime. Was that distinction,
9 whatever it was, don't go into the detail of it, was the distinction
10 between the powers of the VJ within the border belt and outwith the border
11 belt of any relevance at all after war was declared?
12 A. If I understood the question correctly, the powers in the border
13 belt remained the same, the powers of the units in line security and
14 in-depth security remained the same, but these units were merged. The
15 other units have their rights that were envisaged by the rules [as
16 interpreted] in their respective areas of defence.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: So are you suggesting that even after war was
18 declared it was not within the powers of your men outwith the border belt
19 just to stop a civilian and search him?
20 A. They did not have the right to stop civilians on public roads and
21 in public areas outside their areas of defence. If a civilian was found
22 inside areas of defence, they were stopped, their identity was checked,
23 they would be taken into custody, and they were either charged or
24 released. I am saying that the road was an exception. We had no powers
25 there. We had no powers over those two border crossings facing the
1 Republic of Macedonia, namely, the Djeneral Jankovic border crossing and
2 Globocica border crossing. All the rights there belonged to the customs
3 service and the border police.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: And explain to me again what you mean by the area
5 of defence.
6 A. The units that took up positions in their areas, and they are
7 delineated by three points, within that area the equipment and personnel
8 took up the positions there, engineered the positions, created roads,
9 communicating trenches and covers, and prepared for combat and defence
10 from aggression. That is an area of defence, and it is defined for every
11 unit according to their level and on brigade level it is defined for every
13 JUDGE BONOMY: So are you talking of the immediate area around the
14 location of a unit?
15 A. The positions of units are arranged in this way. A location from
16 which a possible aggressor is determined. The positions that are
17 engineered have to meet the requirements of the rules of use of every
18 combat piece of equipment, that is, reconnaissance, firing points from
19 which individual fire or group fire is expected, that is an area of
20 defence. It's not static, therefore. It is a line with several positions
21 of cover, and within that area the units have room for manoeuvre. Covers
22 are created for equipment and for personnel, so that they can move from
23 one to another. They can move a vehicle and defend.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Please excuse my layman's ignorance because I find
25 this concept difficult to understand at the moment. If you take all the
1 areas of defence occupied by your units at any given time, do they
2 completely cover the area of responsibility?
3 A. In plains your definition would be correct; in hilly and
4 mountainous areas, like this one, we cover routes of possible movement of
5 the aggressor. We evaluate the layout of the land, the terrain, the
6 forces that are expected, and according to that we deploy personnel and
7 equipment. We don't cover the entire area, just the possible routes of
8 movement of the aggressor. They can assume frontal positions, but more
9 usually the positions are flank. We cover the flanks so that there is
10 open space between every two battalions or two artillery battalions.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: How would a civilian or a group of civilians know
12 whether they were entering a particular area of defence?
13 A. An area of defence is a piece of land that is physically secured,
14 guarded. There are patrols and there are ambushes. The patrols would be
15 the first to get into contact with a stray or perhaps organized or
16 unorganized groups of people moving around. There was several cases where
17 people would accidentally run into an area of defence, and we directed
18 them to alternative routes where there is no such prohibition of movement
19 due to the existence of an area of defence. And that happened usually in
20 situations of poor visibility, mainly by night, we redirected them to main
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
23 Mr. Cepic -- sorry, one moment.
24 MR. CEPIC: Sorry.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Zecevic.
1 MR. ZECEVIC: Sorry, Your Honour, I didn't want to interrupt, page
2 44, 24, the witness said "Rules of Combat." 44, 24, that were envisaged
3 by the rules, it says here by the rules, but he said Rules of Combat in
4 their respective areas of defence.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 Mr. Cepic.
7 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Once again, thank you, Your Honour.
8 Re-examination by Mr. Cepic:
9 Q. [Interpretation] General, it's me again. Yesterday you talked
10 about your war diary, you mentioned that this was an auxiliary document.
11 I would be interested in the following. Is a war diary sent to the
12 superior command for supervision and for approval?
13 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could all microphones
14 please be switched off.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is an auxiliary document and it
16 is used for following the situation in units, and it is kept by the
17 operations organ. So it's not the main operations officer, but the person
18 who is assigned to do that or a duty officer. It is not sent to the
19 brigades and the one from the brigade is not sent to the corps command for
20 approval. It is used primarily to monitor the situation in the respective
21 units. It is an auxiliary document. The basic document in the war is an
22 order, and that has to be on a map graphically and textually presented.
23 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Are all activities precisely entered into the war diary?
25 A. It all depends on the person receiving information, namely, that
1 person is usually on duty all the time, or rather, there are duty shifts
2 at the operations centre in the brigade command and further up. According
3 to the information that this person receives from the field, he makes
4 entries; that is to say, on the basis of what he receives from the field,
5 from the ground. He doesn't check that. So there is a duty officer
6 there, and this is usually unprocessed data, raw data, if we can put it
7 that way.
8 Q. General, in response to a question put by Ms. Kravetz on the
9 deployment of RMS in the town of Urosevac, what was mentioned was the
10 company of Bosko Cakic. I want to know what RMS means first and foremost?
11 A. This is an abbreviation for war materiel resources, Bosko Cakic is
12 a contractual company that worked on the overhaul of military motor
13 vehicles, not combat vehicles, motor vehicles, and they had their own
14 facilities, their own warehouses with spare parts and workshops, of
16 Q. Wartime materiel resources, what is all of that? You mentioned
17 ammunition yesterday and what does it include in addition to ammunition,
18 this category?
19 A. Ammunition is the basic resource that is not in the combat vehicle
20 but is kept in the reserves, and the rest is quarter-masters resources,
21 resources of the medical corps, all of that, meaning food and everything
22 else that is necessary for logistics of a unit, even fuel is a wartime
23 materiel resource. If there is an abuse in that period of time, well
24 it -- gasoline was kept at gasoline stations, and they are not in the
25 field, they're by the road, and some fuel is also in fuel trucks on the
1 road as well.
2 Q. Thank you, General. When responding to questions put by my
3 learned friend, in view of the responsibility of officers in combat
4 activities, that is to say if they observe that a member of the MUP, for
5 example, or somebody else is in the process of committing a crime, that a
6 military man should stop that. I'm asking you now to the best of your
7 recollection, is this his civic responsibility or is there a special,
8 legal obligation on the part of a military person when this is taking
10 A. In the combat rules what is envisaged is that any kind of criminal
11 offence should be prevented in the sense of serious criminal offences,
12 crimes, then measures and action is taken to punish perpetrators.
13 Q. When talking about civilian facilities, houses and villages from
14 which the terrorists attack the security forces, are they a legitimate
15 military target?
16 A. Well, precisely what Madam Prosecutor said yesterday or asked me
17 about yesterday, that's it. Whoever fires with a weapon, with military
18 equipment, against state organs from any building, regardless of whether
19 it's a school, a house, even a religious facility, that is a legitimate
20 target that has to be destroyed. With all due respect and especially
21 vis-a-vis some facilities.
22 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] 5D1337, could I please have that on
24 Q. General, we're going to deal with Racak. So in order to have
25 everything clear to all, we're going to have a map that we've been using
1 so far displayed on the screen.
2 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Could the upper part of the map please
3 be zoomed in. A bit more, please. Thank you.
4 Q. General, this is a war map in all fairness, but I believe that you
5 will recognise all the locations here. So I'm going to ask you to use the
6 marker that the usher will give you and first mark the location of
7 Canovica Brdo, where part of your unit was as you described it.
8 A. Could it be zoomed in a bit more so that I can do it better.
9 MR. CEPIC: Could we have zoom in, please.
10 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
11 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] The upper part, please. [In English]
12 A little bit more. Now it's fine I think. One more time, one more time,
13 please. Thank you.
14 Q. [Interpretation] General, do you need it any more?
15 A. [No interpretation]
16 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We cannot hear the witness.
17 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Can you please put a circle around Canovica Brdo --
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Please move the microphone around so we can hear --
20 no, no, it needs to come the other way.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is it, it's Stimlje and the
22 area of Canovica Brdo is this.
23 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Thank you. Could you please put a circle around the village of
1 A. [Marks]
2 Q. Could you please put number 1 by Canovica Brdo and 2 by Racak.
3 A. [Marks]
4 Q. Could you please put a circle around the town of Stimlje and the
5 main road and mark it by a number 3 --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Please don't do that.
7 Is it not clear enough, Mr. Cepic --
8 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: -- without confusing -- you know, the map will get
10 very confused.
11 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
12 Q. [Interpretation] General, could you please mark on this map the
13 position of your Combat Group 1 which provided security on the
14 communication route at Dulje. Would you like it to be zoomed in a bit
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you can't without going back to square 1 on
17 the map, I'm afraid, and starting again. Or is that wrong? Perhaps
18 that --
19 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Please, if it is feasible from a
20 technical point of view.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: It's not possible apparently.
22 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
23 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. General, unfortunately, for the time being this map cannot be
25 zoomed in any further. Could you try to deal with it as it is now. It's
1 pretty small, but try, Dulje, the position of your unit at Dulje.
2 A. [Marks]
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, could you mark that with a 3, please.
4 THE WITNESS: [Marks]
5 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. General, from point 3 to point 2, that is to say from the position
7 of Dulje to the village of Racak, what is the distance?
8 A. The distance is about 12 or 13 kilometres.
9 Q. Thank you. Thank you, General.
10 MR. CEPIC: Can we have an IC number for this document, please?
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Before we do I want to ask you something about it.
12 The unit that was on its training exercise that you reported on
13 had a position somewhere between the two red circles; is that correct?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. The unit that was carrying out
15 combat training, that's the platoon that we saw in that other exhibit, and
16 before that we saw a company, it was engaged in training in this area,
17 with your permission, here, and in this area that is basically unpopulated
18 because we avoided tank movements and combat training in places where
19 people could be disturbed and also for the sake of the safety of our own
20 units. So it is in these two directions that I marked just now that the
21 training took place.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Just hold on a minute.
23 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]
24 JUDGE BONOMY: One of the things you'll recollect your report said
25 was that part of Battle Group 1 is in the general area of Stimlje, and
1 then in brackets (Canovica Brdo) where they are engaged in regular combat
2 training. It goes on to say:
3 "After combat operations and an attack by Albanian sabotage and
4 terrorist forces started, the unit occupied the sectors and took up the
5 following positions for a flexible defence ..."
6 Now, can you show on the map where these personnel were located?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President. I said about
8 Dulje in relation to a question that was in that exhibit. As for Stimlje,
9 the training of units was in area number 1, as I marked it here, and that
10 is where they conducted that training of observation from combat vehicles,
11 in this area, that's where they were carrying out that training.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: And they became -- but their position on the 15th
13 of January was somewhere between the two red circles; is that correct?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. Their positions were here, to
15 the west -- let me mark it, that's where the artillery was, with set-up
16 positions; and that is where they were carrying out training on their own
17 positions, the artillery. The tanks were on this side, on the east, and
18 they were training with their resources. They were not on the move, the
19 units. There was observation from combat vehicles day and night.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, what the report says is that: "A 120 howitzer
21 artillery battery was one kilometre south-west of Canovica Brdo and a tank
22 platoon was about one kilometre south-east of Canovica Brdo."
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's precisely what I
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, I thought your first red circle was supposed
1 to circle Canovica Brdo.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. The first circle is Canovica
3 Brdo, that is above Stimlje.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: But if something is either south-east or
5 south-west, it will be further down the map and either slightly to the
6 right or slightly to the left, which is more or less on the road that runs
7 between Racak and Canovica Brdo.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The artillery positions were to the
9 west, or rather, north-west of Stimlje. Canovica Brdo is this part here
10 where the unit was. Canovica Brdo is about a kilometre and a half all the
11 way up to Stimlje itself, and the unit is here, in this area that is the
12 wooded area. And the artillery was to the west of this area for the
13 howitzers and to the right for tanks and APCs.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: To clarify the explanation of this, the first
15 markings you made in answer to my questions were in and around the red
16 circle number 1, and then the most recent markings you've made are further
17 north on the map.
18 Now, Mr. Cepic, I understood that the first red circle was
19 supposed to be Canovica Brdo. Have I got that wrong?
20 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I think the witness pin-pointed the
21 area of Canovica Brdo or Canovica hill, but I can clarify further by
22 asking him questions by your leave.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, he's now said it's further to the north on
24 the map. He's already given answers which don't seem to match. Let's see
25 what the first answer was.
1 "Can you please put a circle around Canovica Brdo," and that's
2 what he did. And this report says -- this report then says that these --
3 the howitzer battery and the tank platoon were respectively a kilometre
4 south-west of Canovica Brdo and a kilometre south-east of Canovica Brdo.
5 And now it looks as though this is, on the face of what's being drawn,
6 rather confusing. However, please continue if you can.
7 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you want an IC number for this first of all?
9 MR. CEPIC: Continue on same document --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
11 MR. CEPIC: New one. Or it would be maybe better if I have a new
12 one, bigger.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: All right, give this one an IC number, please.
14 THE REGISTRAR: That would be IC145, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
16 MR. CEPIC: Can we have a little bit bigger the sector of Stimlje
17 town and Canovica Brdo/hill.
18 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
19 MR. CEPIC: One more time, please.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, the other thing you can do, it's a
21 matter for you, although this may be better, but you could put the IC
22 document back on the screen and you can then magnify it further before you
23 mark anything else on it. Now, either do that or proceed with this one.
24 It's a matter for you.
25 MR. CEPIC: I think that would be a little bit more easier if we
1 have the new document.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
3 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Q. [Interpretation] General, we have now before us an enlarged map
5 before us. Can you indicate on this map where the units designated in
6 your report -- could you please first circle the area of Canovica Brdo --
7 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel please repeat the date of the
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Can you give the interpreter the date of the report
10 again, please.
11 MR. CEPIC: 17th of January, 1999.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
13 THE WITNESS: [Marks]
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, now this evidence is -- well, it contradicts
15 the map, but you'll need to explore that.
16 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Do you see where it says "Canovica Brdo" on the map? Could you
18 please take a blue marker, General, and mark the positions of the howitzer
19 battery to the south-west of Canovica Brdo.
20 A. [Marks]
21 Q. And the tank, if this is south-east of Canovica Brdo.
22 A. I've marked it here.
23 Q. Could you please put 1 where the artillery position was and 2
24 where the tank position was.
25 A. [Marks]
1 Q. From those positions, can you see the village of Racak directly?
2 A. From these positions you cannot see the village of Racak. That's
3 how the units were positioned. In view of this area here between these
4 units and to the south where there is a red circle because of the dense
5 pine forest. Furthermore, there is a steep slope where it says 2 towards
6 Stimlje, it's almost a cliff going down to Kosovska Ravnica that's why --
7 towards the plain. That's why the tank was positioned facing the plain.
8 Q. What side were the tanks facing, this plain, where is it?
9 A. The plain is to the east of the position in this direction.
10 Q. General, thank you.
11 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Can we have an IC number for this
13 THE REGISTRAR: That will be IC00146, Your Honours.
14 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Now we'll talk about the village of Kotlina, there's been a lot of
16 discussion about that. Could we see document --
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Just a moment, just to complete this.
18 Can you tell me why they were located there, Mr. Jelic?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This unit which was from Combat
20 Group 1 was located here according to the agreement. Part of that group
21 was located here and this was to provide security for the units going
22 along the Crnoljevska gorge. There was a permanent check-point. If you
23 see this red circle, underneath it there were always three combat
24 vehicles, a reconnaissance or a Praga, escorting the columns moving
25 through Stimlje from Pristina to the Dulje pass and onwards, towards Suva
1 Reka and Prizren. That unit was there, as I said, starting from April
2 1998. It was part of the combat group which was at Dulje, and the
3 commander of that combat group was at Dulje.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you saying every day in life they came out and
5 occupied these positions?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, they had positions, the
7 artillery had its prepared positions, but the positions were taken only if
8 the unit was attacked. However, the artillery was at the positions
9 permanently with a few crew members, but they were always on duty.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: See, the report says: "After combat operations and
11 an attack by Albanians, the unit occupied the sectors and took up the
12 following positions for a flexible defence ..."
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's correct. The unit with
14 tanks and personnel carriers was in the pinewoods. As soon as fire was
15 opened, they took up the positions marked here where number 2 is. The
16 artillery had been there for months at these prepared positions.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm still not understanding you. They were
18 actually for months sitting in these two blue areas marked on the map as
19 number 1 and 2?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The artillery was sitting there for
21 months, the artillery. The tanks were inside the pine forest, and only if
22 there was an attack did the tanks move to the positions. All the other
23 vehicles that were there as well as the combat vehicles, there were BRDMs
24 there and Pragas, they had their positions. If the positions were not
25 taken, if they were not escorting a column towards Dulje and Suva Reka,
1 then they were in the area; and whenever there was an attack, they would
2 take up these prepared positions.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
4 Mr. Cepic.
5 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Could we have IC143 on our screens,
7 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel repeat the number.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: IC143.
9 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. General, do you see this document shown to you yesterday by my
11 colleague Mr. Ivetic?
12 A. Yes, I see it, it's from the brigade command.
13 Q. Could you please read out item 1.
14 A. "To the command" --
15 Q. Only point 1.
16 A. "On the basis of information gathered in the last three or four
17 days, there has again been gathering and fire by Siptar terrorist forces
18 in the area of the village of Straza, the village of Kotlina, and on the
19 Bojevo-Globocica axis with constant provocation at the repeater on
20 Maja e Salonit hill."
21 Q. General, this fire mentioned here, was it directed at your forces?
22 A. Yes, that's precisely what it says here. Part of these terrorist
23 organizations were attacking our facilities which were along the border
24 belt, the repeaters and the units providing in-depth security for the
25 state border.
1 Q. Yesterday we saw an order. Today you explained to us that it was
2 not implemented. Could you please now answer, on the 24th of March,
3 1998 -- 1999 in Kotlina, did you order any combat tasks to the members of
4 the MUP?
5 A. No, I did not issue any combat task to the MUP forces, nor could I
6 have done so, because the MUP was not resubordinated to us. So even had I
7 issued a task, it would not have been valid, they would not have had to
8 obey. I did not issue a single task.
9 Q. In the course of the war did you issue any tasks to the MUP, yes
10 or no?
11 A. No, never.
12 Q. Thank you. Now can you clarify the following, please. If there
13 was an incident, for example, an attack on members of the army in the
14 border belt, and in that incident one or more terrorists was liquidated,
15 so if there was an incident between the members of the army and the
16 terrorists, whose investigating organs would carry out an on-site
18 A. Measures are taken immediately, the military investigating organ
19 is called in with the forensic technicians and the police, and they come
20 and carry out an on-site investigation, and we are responsible for his
21 security and the successful completion of his task so that this can be
22 processed further.
23 Q. What police?
24 A. When I say "police," I mean our military police, the military
25 police company which was part of my brigade.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Could we have 6D501. [In English]
3 Could we have 6D501, please.
4 Q. [Interpretation] General, can you read what it says here. What is
5 this document about?
6 A. Well, it's a little hard to see. It is a cover for a file. The
7 subject is: "Terrorism." The place is: "Kacanik municipality, the
8 village of Kotlina. The date is the 24th of March, 1999, and then it
9 says: "Terrorists."
10 Q. Will you read the heading?
11 A. "Republic of Serbia, the Ministry of the Interior, secretariat of
12 interior affairs in Urosevac, group for crime and forensic technology."
13 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Could we have the full page in B/C/S,
14 please. [In English] Fourth page, please, in B/C/S. Could we scroll
15 down, please.
16 Q. [Interpretation] Do you see the last six lines, the last six
17 bullet points?
18 A. Yes, I do.
19 Q. Where is the weaponry and ammunition seized? Can you read the
20 last six lines.
21 A. "General overview of the equipment and weaponry found photographed
22 on the premises of SUP Urosevac.
23 "Part of the weaponry photographed on the premises of Urosevac
25 "Part of the weaponry and ammunition photographed on the premises
1 of Urosevac SUP.
2 "Part of the equipment photographed on the premises of Urosevac
3 SUP." And then the next line is the same --
4 Q. Let's not repeat it. Thank you. Thank you, General.
5 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number 6D736, please.
6 Q. [Interpretation] General, this document was shown you by my
7 colleague Mr. Ivetic. Could you tell me, who was the primary vehicle, the
8 mainstay, of anti-terrorist combat?
9 A. In this case here it was the MUP forces.
10 Q. Could you please look at 1.2, there is a reference to the PJP
11 company Urosevac. Would you tell me, did you ask these units to be
13 A. Yes, by virtue of an order that had arrived from the corps
14 command, they should have resubordinated primarily manoeuvring units such
15 as companies should have been resubordinated. These PJP companies of the
16 Urosevac SUP, certainly not buildings, administrations, et cetera.
17 Q. Thank you. Would you look at paragraph 3.1.
18 A. I see it.
19 Q. What is it?
20 A. This is the consumption of weapons and ammunition for that day in
21 the brigade. It says that only one 100-millimetre contact-fuse shell
22 bullet was used; 160, 7.62 --
23 Q. We can see all that on the screen. Is that the amount expanded
24 for the whole brigade? What are these figures?
25 A. Could you scroll down so we can see the rest? It's my document,
1 but up there in the heading you see it's a report sent to the command of
2 the Pristina Corps about weapons and ammunition used for that day by the
3 brigade. There's the signature of Colonel Kolundzija, Chief of Staff of
4 the brigade.
5 Q. We see weapons or artillery PAR S-2M, what is that and what is it
6 used for?
7 A. It's Strela 1 and 2.
8 Q. What is it?
9 A. It's anti-aircraft weaponry and ammunition.
10 Q. General, this is the amount of ammunition used in one day. Is it
11 small, large, could you qualify it.
12 A. Relative to the brigade, the amount of weapons, this is a minor
13 number. The brigade did not use more than 0.5 per cent of BK for the
14 whole war, that means 1 to 1.5 shell per tank for the whole duration of
15 the war. I'm using the example of one tank.
16 Q. Could you tell us in a per cent -- the percentage?
17 A. From 3 to 5 per cent of the combat set for the unit.
18 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number P370, please.
19 Q. [Interpretation] We will deal with Dubrava briefly.
20 MR. CEPIC: Could we have the -- I think that is the -- sixth
21 page. I need the map. Could we have horizontal, please.
22 Q. [Interpretation] General, the position marked "VJ-base," is it
23 correctly depicted?
24 A. Yes, that's the area, although we mark it differently, with an
25 ellipsis or a circle but that's the area where the unit was.
1 Q. Are those the static forces, as you described them in your
3 A. Yes, those are the artillery units that were in their position and
4 they were to the north. During the attack by terrorist forces, they
5 blocked the northern they blocked the northern section, that is, to the
6 north of this inscription "VJ- base."
7 Q. What kind of uniforms did PJP wear during the war?
8 A. They had new uniforms, dark, brighter green, predominantly green,
9 similar to our camouflage uniforms but with a stronger green colour.
10 MR. IVETIC: [Previous translation continues]...
11 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, may I respond?
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, Mr. Ivetic, did you say something?
13 MR. IVETIC: Yes, Your Honour, I was inquiring of my colleague
14 what part of the cross-examination that is addressed to since I don't
15 recall uniforms coming up at all, at least if it did I must have missed
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic.
18 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Based on the document Mr. Ivetic
19 introduced, 6D736, referring to the Urosevac PJP company, I wanted to
20 clarify certain aspects of the event described in the report.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. Please continue.
22 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
23 Q. General, you explained to us what battle order means, what area of
24 responsibility means, you clarified these concepts for the Trial Chamber.
25 What I would like to know is: Outside the area of deployment of your
1 forces, what is the -- which part of the MUP was responsible for public
2 law and order and the personal and property safety of the civilian
4 A. I don't know the details of the structure of the MUP, but there
5 existed OUPs in Kacanik, Strpce, and Stimlje, those are departments of the
6 interior. Their main staff was in Urosevac. Those units of the MUP were
7 responsible for the entire situation outside of areas of defence of the
8 brigade, just like in peacetime, with the exception of those locations
9 taken up by areas of defence.
10 Q. You explained that on this main road no bridges were destroyed.
11 Perhaps it would be better to see it.
12 MR. CEPIC: [Previous translation continues]... Sixth page,
13 please. P615, sixth page, please. Could we have horizontal, please.
14 Q. [Interpretation] Did you mean this main road going from Kacanik to
15 the south?
16 A. Yes, I meant this main road going from Urosevac through Kacanik,
17 Djeneral Jankovic border crossing, and on to Skopje.
18 Q. We have a much clearer picture here than on the map where you put
19 a circle relative to those villages that you said were an obstacle and
20 that many people were killed. Could you just put a circle around that
21 area, those few villages in Kacanik municipality that we mentioned.
22 A. It's basically this circle, this ellipsis.
23 Q. Thank you, General. And the last question. You said that bridges
24 were not destroyed there. Where any bridges destroyed leading towards
25 Serbia - I mean in Kosovo on the roads towards Serbia?
1 A. Unfortunately, from the border of Kosovo and Metohija and further
2 on, all the bridges were destroyed towards Kursumlija, Mitrovica, towards
3 Nis, and Leskovac.
4 Q. Thank you, General. That was my last question.
5 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honours. Could we have just IC number
6 for this document, please?
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
8 THE REGISTRAR: That would be IC147, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Jelic, that completes your evidence. Thank you
12 for your patience and for coming to give evidence here. You're now free
13 to leave the courtroom.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you too.
15 [The witness withdrew]
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, your next witness is?
17 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Our next witness is
18 Colonel Milutin Filipovic.
19 [Defence counsel confer]
20 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, just for clarification, my colleagues
21 also suggest it to me, page 66, lines from -- which line? When I
22 mentioned those villages it was related to document which General shown us
23 during the direct examination about the villages and the reasons for --
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes --
25 MR. CEPIC: -- Those events in that area.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: What is the problem?
2 MR. CEPIC: No problem.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
4 MR. CEPIC: Just to have reference for that. Thank you.
5 [The witness entered court]
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Good afternoon, Mr. Filipovic.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Would you now make the solemn declaration to speak
9 the truth by reading aloud the document which will be shown to you.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Very well. I solemnly declare that
11 I will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Please be seated.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: You will now be examined by Mr. Cepic on behalf of
15 Mr. Lazarevic.
16 Mr. Cepic.
17 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 WITNESS: MILUTIN FILIPOVIC
19 [Witness answered through interpreter]
20 Examination by Mr. Cepic:
21 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, good afternoon.
22 A. Good afternoon.
23 Q. For the purposes of the transcript, could you give me your full
25 A. Milutin Filipovic.
1 Q. Tell me, what is your current status?
2 A. Currently I am a pensioner.
3 Q. Could you tell me briefly what were the most important positions
4 you held during your career?
5 A. In my military career I had the following duties: Commander of
6 the escort battalion -- platoon, commander of a military police company,
7 assistant commander of battalion of the military police, operations
8 officer in a brigade, operations officer in the area zone of the
9 Territorial Defence of Pristina, Chief of Staff of the territorial zone of
10 the municipality of Pristina, commander of the territorial defence of the
11 municipality of Pristina, assistant commander of the Pristina Corps for
12 personnel and housing matters, and that would be it up until the beginning
13 of the aggression.
14 Q. Once the aggression started, what duties did you perform?
15 A. After the aggression started -- or, to be more accurate, from the
16 29th of March onwards, in addition to my regular duty through an order of
17 the corps commander, I was appointed leader of a group established by the
18 corps command and temporary commander of the Pristina garrison.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number 5D348, please. Could we
21 have in English, please. Thank you.
22 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, do you recognise yourself in this
24 A. Yes. I see this document. This document is one of the command of
25 the Pristina Corps dated the 30th of March, 1999. In this document the
1 commander of the Pristina Corps, on the basis of a newly arisen need and
2 with a view to organizing life and work in the Pristina Corps garrison,
3 appointed me leader of a team of the corps command and temporary commander
4 of the Pristina garrison.
5 Q. Thank you. I'm just going to ask you briefly, what were these
6 elements within the group that you headed?
7 A. As can be seen from this order, these elements were the personnel
8 affairs organ; the garrison affairs organ; the department for presenting
9 the situation in air-space; the military band, orchestra; the military
10 prosecutor's office; the military library; and other lesser elements, as
11 stated in this document.
12 Q. Thank you. Colonel, what were your tasks vis-a-vis the military
13 prosecutor's office and the military court?
14 A. As for the military court and the military prosecutor's office, I,
15 as head of this group, mainly had tasks that were related to securing
16 overall conditions for the life and work of these two important
17 institutions in the corps. Also, for their supplies, for their physical
18 security, and ensuring all other conditions for their normal, lawful work
19 in accordance with the constitution, the Law on the Army, and other
20 regulations that regulate that particular subject matter.
21 Q. Colonel, did General Lazarevic express an interest in the work of
22 the court and the prosecutor's office?
23 A. General Lazarevic, as corps commander, expressed exceptional
24 interest in the work of these two institutions, especially from the point
25 of view of securing the unhindered work of the military court and the
1 military prosecutor's office, which is to say all conditions making it
2 possible for them to work in accordance with the law and regulations. He
3 devoted such attention to this throughout the aggression, and especially
4 when the courthouse was damaged during the bombing and therefore had to be
6 Q. Thank you. Colonel, could you or any other officer affect the
7 actual work of the court or the prosecutor's office?
8 A. No, no, neither I nor any other officer could exercise any
9 influence over the work of the military court and prosecutor's office.
10 The corps commander couldn't do that either or the army commander, and no
11 one else for that matter, because the court and the prosecutor's office
12 were independent institutions and they functioned in accordance with the
13 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, in accordance with the
14 Law on the Army, and in accordance with other regulations regulating the
15 work of military courts and military prosecutor's offices.
16 Q. Thank you. Within your composition in Pristina during the course
17 of the war, did you have any combat units?
18 A. Within the group of the command of the garrison of Pristina, or
19 rather, the group of the corps command and the command of the garrison, as
20 can be seen from this order and otherwise, there was not a single combat
21 unit there. All combat units were relocated when the aggression began
22 from the town of Pristina, that is to say those that had been there
23 before, and they took up their positions in keeping with plans that had
24 been made prior to the aggression.
25 Q. Thank you. Your composition, your units, did they provide
1 security for some facilities or buildings in Pristina?
2 A. Our units did provide security for facilities in Pristina
3 primarily the buildings where they were deployed themselves, or rather,
4 those facilities where these units were for the most part.
5 Q. Thank you. Did members of the army take part in providing
6 security for the house of Ibrahim Rugova?
7 A. No. Members of the army did not take part in securing the house
8 of Ibrahim Rugova.
9 Q. Did your units take part in providing security for the clinical
10 centre and hospital?
11 A. The composition that I headed and the composition of the garrison
12 command did not provide security for the clinical centre in Pristina or
13 for the hospital. Most probably this was carried out by people from the
14 hospital security itself or some other structures.
15 Q. Could you tell me what the ethnic composition was of the members
16 of the Pristina Corps.
17 A. The ethnic composition of the members of the Pristina Corps was
18 for the most part such that it reflected the ethnic structure of the
19 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, or rather, all the ethnicities,
20 nationalities, living in Yugoslavia then were represented.
21 Q. Thank you. Colonel, witness Lakic Djorovic testified before this
22 Trial Chamber, and he pointed out that in the Pristina Corps there was an
23 officer for supplies in the command of the Pristina Corps, that is, and
24 that his last name was Tijanic. You were the personnel affairs officer.
25 Tell me, when we're talking about this period of 1998 and 1999, was there
1 a person in the Pristina Corps, in the command of the Pristina Corps, with
2 the last name Tijanic?
3 A. In the command of the Pristina Corps I worked for a long time in
4 the personnel affairs organ and for a long I'm I was a member of the
5 collegium, too, of the collegium of the commander of the Pristina Corps.
6 And as far as I know, such a person with a last name of Tijanic certainly
7 did not exist in the command of the Pristina Corps.
8 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, is it appropriate time for the break?
9 JUDGE BONOMY: It would be. Thank you.
10 Mr. Filipovic, we need to break for lunch now, that will be for an
11 hour. During that period you should have no discussion with anyone at all
12 about the evidence in the case. Just talk about anything else with
13 whoever you meet, but please absolutely no discussion of the evidence.
14 Now, could you leave the courtroom with the usher and we will see
15 you at quarter to 2.00.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
17 [The witness stands down]
18 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.46 p.m.
19 --- On resuming at 1.46 p.m.
20 [The witness takes the stand]
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic.
22 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Could we have in e-court system Exhibit Number 5D690, please.
24 I think, Your Honour, my assistant checked during the break, and I
25 think we have just a partial translation just for the first page, not for
1 the second one. Second one is not translated. And with your leave I will
2 ask a couple questions.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
4 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Colonel, is this your document?
6 A. This document was created in the command of the Pristina Corps,
7 it's dated 28 February 1999, and it was created in the section for
8 personnel, of which I was the chief.
9 MR. CEPIC: Could we have the second page, please, horizontal.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Sachdeva.
11 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I just note that the second page in
12 fact is a substantive part of this exhibit, and as my colleague has told
13 the Court it has not been translated; and there are a few others that have
14 a similar situation.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, what do you say?
16 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Well, this witness is the best-placed
17 to explain this document because it's his, and I believe that his brief
18 explanations would clarify it all.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: The real question is: Why is it not translated?
20 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we invested huge efforts
21 to have the documents translated, and we put in a lot of them for
22 translation; but this one is one of the documents on which we were guided
23 by your previous instructions that a partial translation would do.
24 However, of late we are more inclined to be required to provide complete
25 translations. This one is only about numbers, and we can easily read the
1 items, the names of items, in Serbian and the numbers are the same in any
3 JUDGE BONOMY: We will admit this one for your charming naivety.
4 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: And because I dare say that the bits that are
6 incomprehensible to the Bench at the moment or to the majority of the
7 Bench can be translated, but I repeat, Mr. Cepic, if we really get to
8 something where it's plain that the translation is crucial to proper
9 examination of the witness, we will refuse to admit documents where
10 objection is taken. We've already given you that indication last week.
11 So you have to prioritize your documents according to the timing of the
12 witnesses who will speak to them so that they're available when they're
13 here. For the moment proceed with this one.
14 Just before you do I should have acknowledged when we came on to
15 the bench that Judge Nosworthy had joined us after lunchtime. Thank you.
16 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
17 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, could you please read the title of this
19 A. "Survey of manning levels by branch and service," and it concerns
20 professional members of the Pristina Corps.
21 Q. Would you read the date in the upper right corner, "updated
22 on ..."
23 A. "Updated on 28th February 1999," that means that this survey
24 provides manning levels of professional members of the corps for this
1 Q. Since we don't have a translation in our system, just give us this
2 first column with the names of categories, infantry, artillery, artillery
3 rocket units of air defence. What is this table?
4 A. Having heard your discussion a moment earlier, and for the reasons
5 the Presiding Judge stated, I will read it briefly. This is a survey of
6 manning levels by professional members of service by branch and service.
7 You see the manning levels in the Pristina Corps and the date indicated
8 above. Let me just say what the totals were. The Pristina Corps, by
9 establishment --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Stop for a moment.
11 Is there going to be an issue over this, Mr. Sachdeva, because if
12 there is it's no doubt appropriate to go through this, but do you
13 anticipate an issue about the content of this document?
14 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I actually was intending to ask
15 questions generally about manning levels within the corps, but not
16 necessarily with respect to this document; however, as the translation
17 transpires, it may be that I might.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: And have you had an opportunity to have an informal
19 translation of these various categories or will you need to obtain that as
20 we go along?
21 MR. SACHDEVA: I have had a slight opportunity and I will be able
22 to do it before my cross-examination.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I wonder, Mr. Cepic, what is the value in the
24 witness going through this in detail. If there is something in particular
25 that you want to highlight, then ask him about that, but the document can
1 be read by everyone once it's translated.
2 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
3 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, please be brief. You have the table in
4 front of you. I want the last line, total.
5 A. Well, briefly. From this table we see that the Pristina Corps
6 with its professional members by arms and services was manned to between
7 50 and 55 per cent of the establishment, which means the corps should have
8 had 4.471 professional members according to establishment, and it actually
9 had 2253 professional members. In this last rubric we see that on that
10 day there were another 270 professional members who were temporarily
11 seconded from other units from outside the corps. That would be briefly
12 the total, and you can see how these numbers were broken down by category
13 and how many men are missing relative to the establishment level, and
14 that's about 50 per cent.
15 Q. My next question, Colonel. We've heard prior testimony about this
16 but I want to ask you how military conscripts were assigned to various
17 units. Which military occupational specialties exist in the army?
18 A. The Pristina Corps, like any other unit in the army, was manned by
19 the peacetime and reserve forces. Depending on the unit there were
20 records kept in the army, records kept in the institutions and agencies of
21 the Ministry of Defence, records kept at the Ministry of the Interior and
22 its various sections, and records kept with employers and other entities
23 related to military conscripts who are assigned there on so-called civic
24 duties or civil duties. There is also a record kept in military
25 territorial bodies covering a number of military conscripts who were not
1 assigned to other institutions and units --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: [Previous translation continues]... listened to
3 this for over a minute and learned absolutely nothing.
4 Can we start getting some focused questions, Mr. Cepic, on
5 particular points that you want information on, and please try to control
6 the witness's answer so that the answer actually deals with the meat of
7 the question. We're too far into this case now to have this type of
8 evidence about --
9 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: -- military conscripts, bearing in mind we've had a
11 great deal of evidence so far about how they are assigned.
12 MR. CEPIC: Yes. Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, we want just brief answers. Is it the
14 case that the civilian defence, civilian protection, the Ministry of
15 Defence -- sorry, the Ministry of the Interior had and kept their own
16 separate records of military conscripts?
17 A. As I said, they kept separate records. The Ministry of the
18 Interior had its own record, the Ministry of Defence had its own record --
19 Q. Thank you --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: We know all this already.
21 Please get to something we don't know.
22 MR. CEPIC: Thank you. I think that the next question will be
23 related to something which will [indiscernible] something new.
24 Could we have 5D295, please. Can we have it horizontal, please.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, what is this table? What is this chart?
1 A. This chart shows us the structure of losses of the Pristina Corps
2 with resubordinated units. In this first circle, this first pie, we see
3 that out of the total losses sustained 27 were dead, wounded were 70, and
4 missing in action were 3 per cent. In the second circle, on the right, we
5 see the structure of those losses broken down by the inflicting force, and
6 we see that losses inflicted by Siptar terrorist forces were 32 per cent,
7 NATO aviation 29 per cent, and ground aggression accounts for 25 per cent
8 of the losses. Other losses equal 14 per cent.
9 Q. Thank you, Colonel. What about the third bottom pie?
10 A. That too is another structure of the losses, this time broken down
11 by soldiers, non-commissioned officers, and officers. We see that out of
12 the total losses of --
13 Q. Colonel, we can see that. We can see the chart. We just needed
14 the basic description from you. Did your own units suffer any losses
15 during the war?
16 A. Like many other units in the Pristina Corps, the units that I led
17 sustained losses. We had the following losses: Two dead and three
18 wounded. One of the two dead was an NCO warrant officer Slavisa Izderic.
19 Q. How were they killed or wounded?
20 A. By Siptar terrorists and NATO air-strikes. Just as an example,
21 Slavisa Izderic was killed by Siptar terrorists and soldier Dejan Ivkovic
22 was killed by a bomb, by a projectile. Out of the three wounded there
23 were two officers and one soldier, they were wounded by Siptar terrorists.
24 Q. Thank you. Did any member of your unit fire a single bullet
25 throughout the war?
1 A. Not a single member of the group of the corps command headed by me
2 and the garrison command fired a single bullet in the course of the
3 aggression, nor did they point a barrel at anyone; we did not have an
4 opportunity to do any such thing.
5 Q. Thank you. Will you tell me where in the course of the aggression
6 the command of the Pristina Corps was located, all the places it was
8 A. The command of the Pristina Corps was located in the course of the
9 aggression by NATO in the general area of the north-eastern part of
10 Pristina, in the area of Grmija, Gracanica, Kisnica, that is the
11 north-eastern parts of Pristina.
12 Q. Did it move into the town of Pristina itself later on?
13 A. Within this area, the command moved according to need and
14 according to the assessments made to several locations, including the
15 general area of Kisnica, Gracanicko lake, Grmija, and for a brief period
16 it was in Pristina, in the general area of the faculty of law.
17 Q. Thank you. What was in Hotel Grand?
18 A. In the Grand Hotel there was an information centre of the Pristina
19 Corps and the 3rd Army and a place where mail was exchanged.
20 Q. Thank you. Colonel, were you a member of the collegium of the
21 Pristina Corps?
22 A. Yes, I was a member of the collegium of the commander of the
23 Pristina Corps for a long time, until the 29th of March and since that
24 time when -- besides my duty, follow orders, I began to carry out the duty
25 of garrison commander and leader of the group. I occasionally went to
1 briefings and meetings in the corps commander's office.
2 Q. Thank you. What was focused on especially at the meetings at the
3 Pristina Corps?
4 A. At the meetings in the Pristina Corps command and at the collegium
5 meetings, both before and after the aggression, the most frequent topic of
6 discussion were problems of organization concerning the defence of the
7 country and especially emphasis was always laid on respect for the norms
8 of the international law of war and humane treatment of civilians, as well
9 as all other citizens on the territory of Kosovo and Metohija. This was
10 emphasised every day at these meetings, and we conveyed that to our
12 Q. Colonel, what is the significance for you of the 27th of April,
14 A. I recall that day because it was the statehood day of the FRY, and
15 on that day homage was paid and commendations awarded for fighting against
16 the Siptar terrorists and the NATO aggression to a certain number of
17 members of the Pristina Corps.
18 Q. Was General Lazarevic present when these commendations were
20 A. Yes, General Lazarevic was present, as was the commander of the
21 3rd Army, General Pavkovic. It was a Tuesday, I remember, just like
22 today, the 27th and a Tuesday.
23 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Please tell me whether on that occasion you
24 spoke to General Lazarevic.
25 A. After the commendations were awarded in the lobby of the building
1 of the regional Executive Council where the meeting was held and which was
2 damaged quite severely by bombing, I asked him to visit the units of the
3 command group and the garrison command, and he said that he was busy, that
4 he couldn't do it after the meeting, but that he would do it, time
5 permitting, on the following day. And that's how it came about, that's
6 what happened actually. On the following day, the 28th of April, in the
7 morning, General Lazarevic visited my command, or rather, the place where
8 the part I was in was located, and he also visited another part where the
9 section for the situation in the air-space was located. And later on we
10 went to the Grand Hotel. As I remember, this marked some events on the
11 border, or rather, some humanitarian actions dedicated to the corps units
12 or the border units. I remember that Zaga Pavlovic was there representing
13 the Circle of Serb Sisters. They were a humanitarian organization, and
14 that was it.
15 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Could you please reply briefly. Were there
16 any urban acts of terrorism in Pristina before the air-strikes began?
17 A. In Pristina and its surrounding area, there were many terrorist
18 attacks, that is, attacks by Siptar terrorists, and these attacks for the
19 most part were recorded by the media, many media, and they occurred almost
21 Q. Thank you. After the beginning of the aggression, were there
22 still terrorist attacks in Pristina?
23 A. Terrorist attacks by Siptar terrorists continued when the
24 aggression started. I remember many of them, and there are some I don't
25 remember because of the lapse of time. But I remember quite a few such
2 Q. Can you describe a characteristic example very briefly?
3 A. Well, for example, there was an attack an some Russian journalists
4 carried out just after the beginning of the aggression some three or four
5 days later or two or three days later in the north part of Pristina to the
6 north of Vranjevac. On that occasion two Russian journalists were
7 attacked and their driver from Zemun was killed.
8 Q. Thank you. In the general area of Pristina, was there an
9 operations zone of the KLA?
10 A. In the general area of Pristina, that is, in the western parts of
11 Pristina municipality, there was an operations zone of the Siptar
12 terrorists called Lab with five terrorist brigades, the 141st, 151st, 2nd,
13 3rd, and 4th. Two of them threatened Pristina especially, these were
14 153rd and the 154th Siptar terrorist brigade. They were based in the
15 general area, one in the general area of Kacikol, Kolic, Rimaniste,
16 Makovac and Grastica, and Sicevo. While the other one was in the general
17 area of Mramor, Marevce, Businje, Zlas, Kukavice, and Slivovo. The centre
18 of this previous brigade that I spoke about, the commanders in the village
19 of Grastica near the village of Sicevo, and of the other one in Veliko
20 Zlas near Marevce. The commands of these terrorist brigades were deployed
21 in places where in the course of World War II the ballista organizations
22 were based.
23 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number 5D1310, please. 1310,
24 please. I think that we have translation for this document.
25 Q. [Interpretation] General, what does this document show just very
2 A. As I see, it's a document of the 3rd Army command, security
3 department, dated the 13th of -- I think it says April 1999.
4 Q. Thank you.
5 MR. CEPIC: Scroll down document, please.
6 Q. [Interpretation] In the third paragraph there's mention of the
7 village of Marevce. Is that the village you have just mentioned as one of
8 the KLA locations?
9 A. Well, as I said, this paragraph concerns an eye-witness, who is
10 saying here that 20 Serbian civilians were liquidated in December 1998 by
11 Siptar terrorists in Marevce. That's the general area where this Siptar
12 terrorist brigade was based, relying on that area and logistics from the
13 direction of the villages of Ajvali and Maticane.
14 MR. CEPIC: Could we have third page in B/C/S and also --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Sachdeva.
16 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I actually would object to the
17 admission of this document into evidence. In the witness's answer,
18 firstly when he spoke about the terrorist groups, the KLA terrorist
19 groups, no time-line, no date was given in his answer, perhaps because
20 none was asked of the witness. Secondly, he has not made -- there's no
21 foundation in terms of his knowledge of this particular incident with
22 respect to the Serb civilians. On what basis is information on that
23 document. I submit that at least these foundational questions should be
24 asked of the witness.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I think the date was shown in the document, was it
1 not, of December 1998.
2 MR. SACHDEVA: That's correct, Mr. President. However, when my
3 learned friend initially asked the witness of questions related to the
4 Albanian terrorists, no time-line was given and no date was given by the
5 witness. In fact, I understood the answer to refer to the time when NATO
6 started the bombing campaign. That can be clarified.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, can you deal with the timing of this and
8 also the basis of the witness's knowledge of these events.
9 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
10 Q. Colonel, when did you learn about the terrorist acts?
11 A. I learned about these terrorist acts before the aggression and
12 from the point of view of the duty I was holding and also the point of
13 view of a citizen, because in that area in December and before December
14 1998, many citizens of Serb ethnicity went missing from the villages of
15 Slivovo and the villages in Novo Brdo municipality, in the vicinity of
16 Marevce. The missing were never found, and one can see from this document
17 that they were killed, they were liquidated.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: What is this document, Mr. Filipovic?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is a document, as can be seen,
21 from the security department where an eye-witness is saying that he was an
22 eye-witness to the shooting of these 20 Serbs. And I had learned before
23 that in that area in the general area of Marevce many Serbs had gone
25 JUDGE BONOMY: When did you receive this document?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I saw this document during my
2 proofing with the Defence counsel.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: So this isn't a document that came through your
4 hands in the course of your official duties?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not see this document when I
6 was performing my duty, but I know about those people who were killed --
7 rather, I know that they had gone missing.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah. And which was the paragraph that dealt with
9 the --
10 MR. CEPIC: Third paragraph.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Why are we on this page?
12 MR. CEPIC: First page -- I have some questions relating to 11th
13 paragraph --
14 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Well, let's go back, please, to the
15 first page.
16 What's your position now on this document, Mr. Sachdeva?
17 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I must persist in my objection. The
18 witness has now told the Court that he has learned from this document
19 itself that the Serb civilians were liquidated, allegedly liquidated, and
20 he would have no basis to demonstrate that the Serbs that he was talking
21 about went missing are, indeed, these Serbs that have allegedly been
23 Secondly, as the witness has told the Court this is not a document
24 seen prior to proofing. It's from an organization or from the 3rd Army of
25 which he was not a specific member of, albeit the 3rd Army was in the
1 chain of command. And therefore, I persist in my objection that that has
2 not been a proper foundation for this to be admitted.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
4 Mr. Cepic.
5 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, with your leave, this
6 document has already been admitted, or rather, it was on the 13th of
7 November, 2007, that it was admitted.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Through which witness?
9 MR. CEPIC: I think with General Lazarevic.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: In these circumstances all we can do is give
11 appropriate weight to what the witness has said about these events in
12 light of the source of his knowledge and bear in mind the comments you
13 have made, which do seem to have some force and could lead to us - could
14 lead to us - having no regard to what he said about the relationship
15 between this document and the other event that he was speaking about. We
16 would have to evaluate the potential link between the two in the light of
17 all the evidence we hear in the case.
18 So please continue, Mr. Cepic. It's unlikely that referring this
19 witness to paragraph 11 is going to assist you in any way. You would be
20 far better asking for his own personal knowledge of matters --
21 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: -- bearing in mind this document has nothing to do
23 with him.
24 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Colonel, where were you born and where did you spend most of your
2 A. Well, I was born in Pristina. I finished most of my education in
3 Pristina, in Ajvalija, Gracanica, all of that is nearby, near this
4 locality where these persons were liquidated. Nearby I have friends, I
5 have relatives that I talked to when their fellow citizens went missing,
6 especially from the village of Slivovo and from the villages that are in
7 the northern part of Marevce in the territory of the municipality of Novo
8 Brdo. All of these missing persons were never found.
9 Q. Thank you, Colonel. As for your knowledge that you refer to just
10 now, does that correspond to the documents that are in this case?
11 A. They fully correspond --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, whoa, please, please. Are you now going to
13 invite a witness who's looked at documents in proofing to tell us about
14 the correspondence between his recollection and the documents in a very
15 general way? Is that what you intend to do? Because if you do, it will
16 not assist us in any way. If you have got to for some reason put a
17 document to him to establish the identity of what's in the document to
18 his -- to his knowledge, it's very likely the question will have such a
19 leading content as to be valueless to us.
20 MR. CEPIC: I understand. Thank you, Your Honour. I will move
22 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, the town of Pristina itself, was it
23 bombed during the aggression?
24 A. The town of Pristina and the surrounding area were bombed during
25 the NATO aggression on a daily basis. The bombings took place day and
2 Q. Thank you. Colonel, Prosecution witness Emin Kabashi in his
3 statement claims that NATO never bombed before 1800 hours. Is that
5 A. Such a claim, quite simply, is not correct. Pristina as a town
6 and the surrounding area, as I've already said, were bombed every day, day
7 and night, in the morning, midday, evening, public holidays, Saturdays,
8 Sundays, on Easter.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 MR. CEPIC: Could we have in e-court system Exhibit Number 5D241.
11 Could we have in B/C/S, please.
12 Q. [Interpretation] Paragraph 1.1, the second bullet point, 1.1
13 second bullet point starts with the following words: "1445 hours - two
14 explosions in Dragodan" --
15 A. Dragodan is a neighbourhood of Pristina that is in the western
16 part of town viewed in relation to the centre of Pristina. And here we
17 can see that at 1445 hours there were two explosions in that
19 Q. Thank you.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: What is the connection -- your connection to this
21 document, Mr. Filipovic?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, my connection to this document
23 is from the aggression period because --
24 JUDGE BONOMY: [Previous translation continues]...
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- In relation to my command post
1 the operations centre of civilian protection was close to it and I
2 regularly received information from them about the areas that were bombed.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: So is this a report to you, albeit it says the 3rd
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no. This report was not
6 submitted to me, but it was submitted by the operations centre of the
7 civil protection, and they had this information.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: That may be.
9 Mr. Cepic.
10 MR. CEPIC: Yes.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: What is the link between the witness and the
13 MR. CEPIC: This document is from Pristina Corps.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, and what's his link to it?
15 MR. CEPIC: He was the member of Pristina Corps also.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Dealing with this issue? Is this his report or
18 MR. CEPIC: It is not.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: So why did you ask him about this, apart from
20 showing that this document says that bombing took place before 1800 hours,
21 which he's already told us? What was the purpose of.
22 MR. CEPIC: --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: -- What was the purpose of showing this document to
24 him? So I can see if we are doing anything productive here or simply
25 wasting time. I mean, the document exists, it says what it says --
1 MR. CEPIC: Okay, thank you, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: -- He's got no familiarity with it, He hasn't told
3 us that he was there and saw the bombing take place and can confirm it.
4 So we haven't advanced matters by actually spending time in court in
5 exploring this orally. Do you understand? We're keen that you use this
6 time for things that need to be dealt with orally, and you undoubtedly
7 have so far in your case, both you and Mr. Bakrac, presented a great deal
8 of evidence that had to be done orally, it's obvious, because it was
9 controversial in dealing with issues that have already been explored in
10 the Prosecution case. It was particularly important to deal with that
11 orally. But I, speaking for myself, doubt if anything that Mr. Filipovic
12 has said could not have been said in a written statement.
13 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, I will speed up.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Sachdeva.
15 MR. SACHDEVA: Mr. President, I'm sorry, but does that mean that
16 the document will not be into evidence.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: I suspect it's already -- is this already admitted?
18 MR. CEPIC: This is already in the system.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: You see the --
20 MR. CEPIC: Just to check one more time.
21 MR. SACHDEVA: Our records show it has not been, that's why I
23 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
24 MR. CEPIC: Not yet.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: It's not been admitted earlier, Mr. Cepic.
1 MR. CEPIC: No.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: And there may be other ways of doing it, from the
3 bar table or through other witnesses, but this is not the way to deal with
4 this sort of material and secure its admission.
5 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
6 [Microphone not activated] Just to start microphone. Could we
7 have Exhibit Number 5D1242, please.
8 [Videotape played]
9 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
10 Q. Colonel, are you perhaps familiar with this footage?
11 A. Yes, I am familiar with this footage; they are from the night
12 between the 6th and 7th of April, 1999. It was sometime after midnight.
13 The city centre, nucleus, of Pristina was bombed.
14 Q. Thank you. What was bombed specifically on that occasion?
15 A. On that occasion, the main post office in the centre of Pristina
16 was hit, also the provincial institution for social welfare, and many
17 buildings that were in the immediate vicinity of these two buildings, and
18 those were residential buildings. Other buildings in the area were
19 seriously damaged, namely, the Provincial Council of Kosovo, the national
20 bank, Investbanka, the Municipal Assembly of Pristina, and some
21 residential buildings where citizens of Pristina lived were totally
22 destroyed and burned down. There was over ten casualties among the
23 civilians and over 20 civilians were wounded.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Can we see the second part of the same
1 document, or rather, of this material.
2 [Videotape played]
3 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] I'm afraid that we have a technical
4 problem, that we've skipped a part.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, you want an earlier part, do you?
6 MR. CEPIC: Yeah, yeah, exactly.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Let's go back to where it should be. Is this the
8 right part?
9 MR. CEPIC: I hope, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: This is what we saw already.
11 MR. CEPIC: [Microphone not activated] -- Something. I think that
12 we solved it in a short time.
13 [Videotape played]
14 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
15 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, you described this incident to us. My
16 question is the following: Were you there on the spot that night?
17 A. That night I went out and I was there on the actual spot where
18 this happened, because my command was a few hundred metres away from this
19 particular spot. The scenes were terrible.
20 Q. Do you know the names of some of the victims?
21 A. I know many of these victims because members of my command
22 together with me tried to help and get the dead and wounded out of the
23 rubble. In addition to the civilian protection that participated in this,
24 members of the command group, or rather, the garrison command took part as
25 well. Many dead persons were taken out of the rubble, both Siptars and
1 Serbs and Turks --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you going to give us the names of those that
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Example Ali Rexha was seriously
5 wounded and his wife Ikbala Rexha, she was rescued from the rubble but by
6 the members of my command and Cedomir Ilic. Kedzi Omer's wife was
7 seriously wounded. He worked in TV Pristina and her mother, too, Sajrana
8 and many others. The houses were totally destroyed.
9 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Is it the case that an entire family was wiped out in the bombing?
11 A. Yes, a whole family was killed, but some families escaped -- had a
12 very narrow escape, such as the family Denda, whose house was razed to the
13 ground, and they had left just two days earlier.
14 Q. Colonel, just tell us briefly whether any other examples of the
15 army extending assistance to civilians specifically by your unit?
16 A. Many, indeed. Just one more example.
17 Q. Very briefly.
18 A. Near our command, because we were located in the centre in a
19 briefer building near the Municipal Assembly building, a Siptar woman with
20 a wounded child was passing by, conscript Nebojsa Dukic ran to her aid.
21 He together with Dejan Vitorovic took a service vehicle that had been
22 requisitioned from telecom, drove the child and mother to the Pristina
23 hospital, where they were assisted medically.
24 Q. Thank you. Did you report these humanitarian actions to the corps
1 A. At the briefings in the office of the corps commander, I
2 emphasised such examples, and General Lazarevic always commended people
3 for that and insisted that they should go on in the same spirit and that
4 we should convey that to all our subordinates.
5 Q. Thank you. I've already mentioned a Prosecution witness
6 Emin Kabashi, who said in his evidence, in his statement, that in end
7 March when the aggression started at Vranjevac bridge he saw a tank, next
8 to that tank there were persons who stopped civilians, intercepted
9 civilians, and divided them into two groups. My first question is: Do
10 you know where this bridge is; and second, were there any tanks in
11 Pristina during the war?
12 A. I know the Vranjevac neighbourhood and where that bridge is, it is
13 in fact a fly-over, looks like a bridge, crossing a railroad on the
14 Pristina-Podujevo road in the very neighbourhood of Vranjevac. That's the
15 answer to the first part of your question. As for the second, from the
16 start of the aggression until the end, not a single combat unit was
17 deployed there, especially not with a tank, because the 15th Armoured
18 Brigade on the very eve of aggression left the town of Pristina and took
19 up positions that had been planned for it outside of Pristina and from
20 that time on there were no tanks in Pristina, especially not near this
21 fly-over, which is very narrow, and where it would have been a sitting
22 duck for NATO aeroplanes and Siptar terrorists who were numerous in
24 Q. Colonel, we had another witness, another Prosecution witness,
25 Ms. Nazlie Bala. She claims that Pristina town on the 26th of March,
1 1999, was blocked and there were members of the army, the MUP, and Serbian
2 civilians standing on all access roads. The roadblocks were made of
3 barbed wire and Albanians were not allowed to move within the town of
4 Pristina at all. That is her assertion.
5 A. There are many lies in all that. It simply isn't true. Pristina
6 was not blocked, either by the army or anyone else. Barbed wire is a
7 total fabrication and nonsense. There was no barbed wire anywhere inside
8 or near Pristina. There were many foreign reporters criss-crossing this
9 area who can confirm this and many citizens who could see it with their
10 own eyes, as could I. That is absolutely not true. There were no
11 roadblocks and no barbed wire, nor was the population prevented from
12 moving around on their own business and errands.
13 Q. Colonel, you were born in Pristina. Could you please respond to
14 this claim by the same witness. In her statement P2262, she claims that
15 she lived in Lapi Street 30. What is this street? What does it mean,
16 Lapi? Do you know of that street?
17 A. She must have meant Lapska Street because Lapi is Albanian. It
18 should be Lapska Street 30.
19 Q. Thank you. She stated that 30 Lapska Street in her supplemental
20 statement, her house was very close to the centre of Pristina near the old
21 market on a hill from which she had a good view. Could you say anything
22 about these directions?
23 A. It's a relative thing what is close to the centre or not, but
24 Lapska I would say is relatively far from the centre. It's closer to the
25 suburbs of Pristina and closer to Vranjevac neighbourhood.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 MR. CEPIC: Could we have in e-court system Exhibit Number P615,
3 page 30, please. Actually, 31, please.
4 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, we see before us a map of Pristina.
5 Could you show us where the centre is, where the old market is, and then
6 Lapska Street, 30 Lapska Street. Could you put a circle around each of
7 the locations, please.
8 MR. CEPIC: [Previous translation continues]... please. Just
9 zoom in, please. Now it is too big. Zoom out, please. Zoom out, please.
10 Okay. Thank you.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During the aggression there were two
12 functioning markets in Pristina, that is, before the aggression. During
13 the aggression one of these markets was closed. So out of these two, none
14 of these two are the old market. The old market was close to the cinema
15 called Omladina and the Executive Council of Kosovo, right next to the
16 destroyed post office building. This map is not quite clear for this kind
17 of work, but let me say -- I'm not sure I marked this correctly.
18 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Could you put a circle around it and number 1.
20 A. But it was next to the destroyed post office building, 20 metres
21 behind the post office building.
22 Q. Could you please put number 1 there.
23 A. [Marks]
24 Q. Now, please, show us Lapi or Lapska Street.
25 A. Lapska Street should be here, in this area.
1 Q. Put number 2.
2 A. [Marks]
3 Q. What is the distance between these two points?
4 A. 1500 metres I would say.
5 MR. CEPIC: Could we have IC number, please, for this document.
6 THE REGISTRAR: That will be IC148, Your Honours.
7 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
8 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, the same witness claimed that from the
9 roof-top of her building she saw, among other things, Kojlovica village.
10 Is it possible to see Kojlovica village from this position?
11 A. Kojlovica is one of the smaller villages.
12 Q. Just tell us, is it visible?
13 A. From this point, Kojlovica village could not be seen.
14 Q. Thank you. She goes on to say that from her roof at 30 Lapska
15 Street she saw the Serbian artillery firing from a position in Vranjevac
16 towards Kojlovica village. Is that possible?
17 A. It's not possible for more than one reason. First, the Serbian
18 artillery, that is, the artillery of the army, was never located in
19 Vranjevac. It wasn't located there and it couldn't have been located
20 there for tactical reasons because there's almost no street in Vranjevac
21 wider than 2 meters [Realtime transcript read in error "kilometers].
22 Vranjevac was a major logistical base for the terrorists, and the second
23 reason is that not being there they were not able to fire from there,
24 especially not in the direction of Kojlovica village, and even if they had
25 fired, if they could have fired, they would never have used artillery
1 against civilians, especially since Kojlovica is a mixed village populated
2 by both Serbs and Albanians --
3 MR. CEPIC: In transcript actually page 98, line 22, not 2
4 kilometres, 2 metres.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. The same witness, Colonel, claims that on the 28th of March, 1999,
8 she heard shooting in Vranjevac, she heard gun-fire. What could you say
9 to that?
10 A. I didn't hear which day.
11 Q. 28th March 1999.
12 A. She could be right there. On that day there was shooting in the
13 broader area of Vranjevac because the terrorists relying on the support
14 from Vranjevac attacked the Russian journalists I mentioned earlier.
15 That's the occasion when that driver from Zemun was killed.
16 Q. Let's just clarify something, General. The members of the army,
17 what kind of uniforms did they wear?
18 A. It is the generally known fact, they wore the uniforms prescribed
19 for the Army of Yugoslavia.
20 Q. Thank you. Colonel, was anybody moving out of Pristina?
21 A. People were moving out of Pristina.
22 Q. When did that first start?
23 A. It started on the very eve of the aggression, and then, to a
24 lesser or greater degree, it continued during the aggression.
25 Q. Thank you. Did anyone move out in October 1998?
1 A. In October 1998 and later, in September and November, people did
2 move out of Pristina. I know that some humanitarian -- humanitarian
3 organizes like the UNHCR in particular, a number of citizens of Serb
4 ethnicity were contacted and directed to move from Pristina. Many Serb
5 citizens moved out of Pristina then, especially the category of refugees
6 that had come from Croatia and Bosnia to live in Pristina. These were
7 entire families that were moved under the auspices of these organizations,
8 without passports, and they didn't even have to pay their own expenses.
9 They were primarily moved to the United States of America. I know entire
10 families and I know their names and surnames, and I know quite a few of
11 these people personally.
12 Q. Thank you. Before the bombing started, what was the situation
13 like? Were people moving out then, on the eve of the bombing?
14 A. On the eve of the bombing a number of citizens moved out of Siptar
15 and Serb ethnicity and of other ethnic backgrounds because of this
16 objective fear from bombing. Because in foreign media in particular, a
17 lot was being written about bombing and citizens of Serb and Siptar
18 ethnicity were moving out, especially those who were better off. Some of
19 them moved out on the very day of the bombing, or rather, just before the
20 bombing started. For example, an entire building, the so-called Devet
21 Jugovica building in a particular neighbourhood in Pristina, in
22 Tranije Street. They moved out and it was mainly retired military
23 personnel who lived there, ethnic Serbs and Siptars, and a small number of
24 active of duty members of the military. So practically all the people who
25 lived in that apartment building moved out before the bombing started.
1 Only the family of Colonel Cedomir Nikolic and Dzaklic Zivojin stayed on
2 in that building. The families of retired Colonel Suljo Ajeti and
3 Cehaja Ramadan moved out and Dr. Ljubica Azemi and many others who lived
4 in that building.
5 Q. Thank you. Did the members of the army and police move their own
6 families out due to fear?
7 A. A number of members of the Army of Yugoslavia and a number of
8 members, or rather, families of members of the Ministry of the Interior,
9 like many other citizens, moved out parts of their families, especially
10 their children, on the eve of the bombing. That is a well-known fact.
11 Q. What was the reason for all these moves?
12 A. All these moves before the aggression were due to the real threat
13 of bombing, especially because of what was learned from the media.
14 Q. Thank you. And were propaganda calls made to leave Pristina?
15 A. During the aggression, propaganda calls were sent out to leave
16 Pristina, some propaganda calls were made with a view to intimidate the
17 population and the members of the army and the members of the Ministry of
18 the Interior. Such leaflets were distributed during the course of the war
19 in Pristina and the surrounding area. These leaflets were dropped from
20 aircraft too.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 MR. CEPIC: Could we have 5D1364, please. Unfortunately we have
23 no translation for this document, but with your leave just a brief
24 question. [Interpretation] The document is in the Albanian language.
25 Q. Colonel, what does this document represent?
1 A. This is a document -- or actually a leaflet, or rather, propaganda
2 material that could often be seen during the aggression in the streets of
3 Pristina. You cannot see it now on the screens. I remember because I had
4 it in my hands, it was identical in the original too but it was red.
5 Q. What does this leaflet ask for?
6 A. This leaflet is in the Siptar language. Citizens are called upon
7 in this leaflet to leave, the Siptars, that is, to leave Kosovo and
8 Metohija; namely, to move out in the direction of Macedonia and in the
9 direction of Albania. And before a major Serb offensive the KLA is not in
10 a position to protect them, and due to this offensive, alleged offensive
11 of the Serb forces, they should move in these directions from Kosovo and
13 JUDGE BONOMY: When did you first see this document?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I first personally saw this document
15 in the streets of Pristina sometime during the first half of the
16 aggression. I don't remember the exact date. Later on, one of my
17 officers Dobrivoje Stojanovic gave me an identical leaflet later because
18 he found it in town because there was this procedure involving propaganda
19 material. If it had been issued by the General Staff a lot before the
20 aggression and it is in line with that, that this officer handed over this
21 leaflet to me.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: This particular one that we are looking at?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Did you give it to Mr. Cepic?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I gave it to Mr. Cepic.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: And does it look genuine to you?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's not only that it looks genuine
3 to me. I had a document with this content in my own hands. Everything is
4 the same but it's red.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: I understand what you're saying about an actual
6 document, but does it make sense to you for there to be a link in a
7 document like this between the KLA and Rugova?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I did not go into such an
9 analysis, but bearing in mind --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, could you do it now. Could you tell me if a
11 makes sense in a document to link these two.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It does make sense. It depends on
13 the author. It depends on who the author is, and it is certain that the
14 Siptar terrorist organizations and their centres are the author.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: So are you saying that people in Albania -- sorry,
16 people in Kosovo were not aware of the actual relationship between Rugova
17 and the KLA?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, whether they were aware or not
19 is something that I cannot confirm. However, ordinary people could be
20 misled by this leaflet. Very few ordinary people went into this kind of
21 high-brow analysis.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: So how do you say they would be misled?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If hundreds of such leaflets are
24 found in different neighbourhoods every day where citizens live, it is
25 quite certain that one could expect a number of them to be misled by that
1 in this direction.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: When you use the word "Siptar," what do you mean?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, it's not only on this occasion
4 but also in relation to what I testified about until now. When I
5 say "Siptar" in the context of what I'm saying here today, I mean, first
6 and foremost, the Siptar terrorist forces, not taking into account the
7 other Siptars who were loyal citizens of the Republic of Serbia and
9 JUDGE BONOMY: I'd like to know what you regard as the meaning of
10 the word "Siptar."
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the meaning of Siptar is the
12 same like Serb, it is national or ethnic affiliation.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Is there no Serb word for "Albanian"?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Serb word for Albanian in Kosovo and
15 Metohija, the most frequently used one was Siptar, and that was due to
16 several reasons, particularly because they called themselves that. Even
17 the Albanology institute in Pristina issued a dictionary
18 "Fjaloni Serbisht Shqip," which is to say a Siptar-Serbian dictionary. I
19 personally got a dictionary, that dictionary from Fazli Sulja the director
20 of that institute, he was a professor of mine, Dr. Fazli Sulja.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: In Albanian, Mr. Filipovic, does Siptar not mean
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In Albanian, Siptar can be Albanian
24 or Siptar, but we know it's Siptar. It's the name that they use to denote
25 themselves, and there's absolutely no problem about that.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: That's what I'm trying to understand. Is Siptar
2 not the Albanian word for Albanian, or am I misunderstanding the language?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, Siptar is the word commonly in
4 use by the population in Kosovo and the population in Albania, but let me
5 stay away from Albania. That's the word used by people in Kosovo, the
6 Siptar population of Kosovo.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: We obviously don't really understand each other.
8 Please continue, Mr. Cepic.
9 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE CHOWHAN: I'm sorry -- I'm sorry, I'm very sorry, forgive me
11 for this. How does this leaflet come into your possession, this leaflet?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I had such leaflets in my hands
13 before, before this one, I destroyed the early ones. I was given this
14 particular one by one of my COs from the garrison command,
15 Dobrivoje Stojanovic, it's a leaflet he found lying around during the
16 aggression. I had many others that I destroyed but I didn't destroy this
18 JUDGE CHOWHAN: When you talk of many others, you mean facsimile,
19 similar type, or you mean with a different subject?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Like this one.
21 JUDGE CHOWHAN: You also said that these were found in some
22 neighbourhoods. When you speak of those neighbourhoods, were these
23 neighbourhoods of people you call as Siptars or is it a mixed
24 neighbourhood? Were these mixed neighbourhoods?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mainly in neighbourhoods with a
1 predominant Siptar population, but a leaflet has a name in Serbian that
2 includes the word "to fly," a leaflet flies easily, it can fly over from
3 one neighbourhood to another.
4 JUDGE CHOWHAN: And it's my understanding that this
5 word, "Siptar," is actually a derogatory word for the Albanians. Am I
6 right or am I wrong?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, with all due respect,
8 it is not true, it is not correct, it is not a derogatory word, it is not
9 a word meant to denigrate; it's a word commonly in use in Kosovo and
10 Metohija, it's a word featuring in textbooks that are printed in various
11 institutions, scientific and research institutions, academic institutions,
12 including the university and the institute of Abanological studies. I
13 told you a moment ago that a dictionary, a Serb-Albanian dictionary, was
14 published before the aggression, Serbian-Albanian dictionary at a time
15 when the director of that institute was Dr. Fazli Sulja --
16 MR. CEPIC: [Previous translation continues]...
17 JUDGE CHOWHAN: But you see there are many words which are used
18 and are in dictionary, but everybody understands that they are being used
19 in the sense of derogation, like for the black the word was "negro" and so
20 on and so forth. Is it the same sort of thing used by people who didn't
21 like the other side?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no --
23 JUDGE CHOWHAN: [Previous translation continues]...
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- this is certainly nothing like --
25 JUDGE CHOWHAN: [Previous translation continues]... Some
1 documents saying derogatory, Siptar.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, you can certainly not
3 place it in the same context as the word "negro" as used to denote blacks,
4 it's not a derogatory word. It is the word that most of the Siptar
5 population used to denote themselves. Why would we use another word than
6 the word used by the majority of the Siptar population themselves?
7 JUDGE CHOWHAN: But in many of the official documents we found the
8 word used and the explanation that this is derogatory for this. Didn't we
9 see that?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you can make all sorts of --
11 JUDGE BONOMY: [Previous translation continues]... because it's
12 the comment of a translator and not something we're taking account of.
13 But your last question -- your question to Judge Chowhan I don't
14 understand. You say: Why would we use another word than the word used by
15 the majority of the Siptar population. What I don't understand is why you
16 don't call them Albanski since that is the Serb word for Albanian just
17 like an English-speaking person would call you a Serb. We wouldn't call
18 you the word that you might use to call yourself. That's the bit I'm
19 trying to understand.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I tried to say this
21 nicely. There is no problem. We can call them Albanian or Siptar, it is
22 no obstacle between people. I told you I used that word because most of
23 the people of that ethnicity use it to call themselves. Now, it's another
24 matter how elitist circles might interpret that. As far as I'm concerned,
25 there's no problem in using either word, no formal and no practical
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE NOSWORTHY: If I might, and I feel qualified to speak in
4 this matter, I believe that the word that blacks find offensive is
5 "nigger" insofar as "negro" by definition is abrasive, it would not
6 necessarily be considered offensive, although it's not usually used
7 nowadays. Thank you.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, is there anything else you want to deal
9 with before we adjourn?
10 MR. CEPIC: Tomorrow morning I will raise all my questions.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: You'll be here on your own then.
12 MR. CEPIC: Really -- probably. With your leave, if we can leave
13 the courtroom, that will be fine for all parties.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Since we'll be sitting tomorrow afternoon. We've
15 done our best to change that, but it's not possible, I'm afraid, tomorrow.
16 We must break there, Mr. Filipovic, for this evening and we will
17 resume your evidence tomorrow, and that will be at 2.15. So you need to
18 be back, ready to commence evidence, at 2.15. Meanwhile, please have no
19 discussion with anyone at all about the evidence in this case. Now could
20 you please leave the courtroom with the usher.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
22 [The witness stands down]
23 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 3.35 p.m.,
24 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 28th day of
25 November, 2007, at 2.15 p.m.