1 Tuesday, 21 October 2014
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.31 a.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone in and around this
7 Madam Registrar, would you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case
9 IT-09-92-T, The Prosecutor versus Ratko Mladic.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
11 No preliminaries were announced, which means that we can
12 immediately proceed to the examination of the next witness.
13 And the Defence calls Mr. Mladjenovic?
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] That is correct, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness be escorted into the courtroom.
16 Mr. Stojanovic, you asked for 15 additional minutes to the 30
17 usual minutes. Well, the Chamber does not object to it. At the same
18 time, we're always carefully considering how you use your time.
19 [The witness entered court]
20 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning, Mr. Mladjenovic, I take it.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Before you give evidence, the Rules require that you
23 make the solemn declaration. The text is now handed out to you. May I
24 invite to you make that solemn declaration.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
1 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
2 WITNESS: RADOJICA MLADJENOVIC
3 [Witness answered through interpreter]
4 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. Please be seated, Mr. Mladjenovic.
5 Mr. Mladjenovic, you will first examined by Mr. Stojanovic. You
6 will find him to your left. Mr. Stojanovic is counsel for Mr. Mladic.
7 Mr. Stojanovic, please proceed.
8 Examination by Mr. Stojanovic:
9 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning once again. Good morning,
10 Mr. Mladjenovic.
11 A. Good morning.
12 Q. Can you please state your full name slowly for the record.
13 A. My name is Radojica Mladjenovic, son of Rado and Dunja, born in
14 Metrevac, Foca municipality on the 20th of November, 1949.
15 Q. Thank you. Mr. Mladjenovic, will you please tell the Chamber if
16 you have given a statement, a written statement to the Defence team of
17 General Mladic?
18 A. Yes, I have.
19 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we please call
20 up 1D01654, 65 ter.
21 Q. Mr. Mladjenovic, you can see in front of you the cover page of a
22 statement, and I'm asking you is this your signature?
23 A. That is correct, it's my signature.
24 Q. Can we now please look at the last page of this document. And,
25 Mr. Mladjenovic, the same question: The signature that you see on that
1 page, is that your signature, and did you enter this date?
2 A. Yes, that is correct.
3 Q. Thank you. Mr. Mladjenovic, during proofing for your today's
4 appearance before this Court, we established that a couple of things need
5 to be clarified or, rather, amend your statement for better
7 A. That is correct. My opinion was that in order not to waste time,
8 this should be defined in more accurate terms but style-wise, the essence
9 would remain the same, and that relates to a few paragraphs.
10 Q. Since, for the record, we have to go through these issues, I'd
11 kindly ask you to look at paragraph 2 of your statement, which you have
12 in front of you, and you will have a hard copy in a short while. You
13 indicated that in the last sentence, something has to be added precisely
14 the words after the words, "He was the only Serb, to read the first on
15 the election ticket ..." so that finally this sentence should read --
16 THE INTERPRETER: Could Mr. Stojanovic please indicate where he
17 is reading from.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, you're invited to indicate where
19 you're reading from.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] So, Your Honours, I'm reading
21 paragraph 2 of this witness's statement, the last sentence.
22 May I continue?
23 JUDGE ORIE: Please do so.
24 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Mr. Mladjenovic, can we now look at paragraph 5 of your statement
1 where you pointed out --
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Before you continue, the sentence you wanted to
3 read, the last sentence in paragraph 2, in the new version was not
4 recorded. If you want to have that on the record, you should read that
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: Okay. [Interpretation] Yes, thank you,
7 Your Honours.
8 Q. So the sentence, the final sentence in paragraph 2, last
9 sentence, should read as follows: "This means that I was the only Serb
10 who was on the top of the ticket among the five parties on the eve of the
11 1990 elections."
12 Thank you.
13 Now, in paragraph 5, Mr. Mladjenovic, in the second sentence,
14 after the word "the division of the SDS and the SDA," the following
15 should be added: "Other political parties did not have much say," and
16 then the remaining of the text remains the same.
17 Is that correct?
18 A. Yes, it is. Because we constituted an absolute majority.
19 Q. Thank you. Now is it appropriate for me to read the entire
21 A. Please go on.
22 Q. It reads now: "In the division between the SDS and the SDA,
23 other political parties did not have much say. At one point these two
24 parties reached an agreement so that the TO went to the SDS through the
25 position of chief, i.e., Sulejman Pilav who held this position until the
1 last day and equally to the Serbs, Muslims and Croats, whereas the
2 military department went to the SDA."
3 Is that now a correct statement?
4 A. Yes, it is.
5 Q. Can we now focus on paragraph 11?
6 A. I can't see it.
7 Q. Please wait for a second. Where you --
8 MR. STOJANOVIC: Can we enlarge it a bit? Thank you.
9 Q. Where you indicated that something needs to be clarified,
10 precisely the second sentence, so that it should read as follows: "When
11 the assembly was established on recommendation as the population of Foca
12 was Muslim by a slim majority, the president," and then this should be
13 added: Of the Serbian Crisis Staff was supposed to be the president of
14 the Foca SDS. And then: "Petko Cancar, a lawyer, was the first
15 president. I, Radojica Mladjenovic, vice-president, and Miroslav Stanic,
16 the secretary of the party.
17 "Following the election of Mr. Cancar to the National Assembly of
18 BH, and my appointment as president of the executive committee of Foca
19 municipality, Miroslav Stanic became president of the SDS, so that in
20 addition to Miroslav Stanic, the following also became members thereof:
21 Josip Milicic as president of the Serbian municipality, I myself as the
22 president of the executive committee, and other members."
23 Would this be the clarification that is sufficient for you to
24 stand by what has been recorded?
25 A. The essence is absolutely correct. I think that the Tribunal
1 knows that the Crisis Staff was made up of 15 members, so apart from the
2 ones named here, there were others as well, and that was published in the
3 gazette of Foca municipality.
4 Q. Thank you. Can we now look at paragraph 14.
5 Here, you felt the need to explain the second sentence, which now
6 should read as follows: "Gentlemen Varajic and Dzemo Aganovic came to
7 the municipality, and I gave them handwritten notes of 16 points that
8 should have been agreed to by the Muslim side. Also agreed was to
9 terminate any armed clashes.
10 "Varajic made a cursory glance of the request of the Serbian side
11 and all that he said was as follows: 'You shouldn't have called me at
13 "At that point in time, there were already sounds of shelling
14 from the Muslim positions, precisely from the Sukovac direction, which
15 was followed by a Serbian response from the eastern part of the town
16 beneath Zabrana."
17 Now having made this amendment, is this text now consistent with
18 what you remember?
19 A. This is authentic and this is a truthful interpretation.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 A. That's why I wanted this to -- to -- made more specific in order
22 for us to save some time for discussion.
23 Q. And let me just draw your attention to another correction, in
24 paragraph 18. Let's have a look at it. I'm talking about the last
25 sentence. It reads as follows: In inverted commas -- I'm sorry. Thank
2 And I quote: "According more to the records of the Red Cross
3 about 3.000."
4 Now this is just a semantic correction so it should read as
5 follows: "According to the Red Cross records, more than 3.000 people."
6 A. We are talking about the Red Cross. According to the Red Cross
8 Q. Thank you. Now, after we have made these corrections and
9 provided these clarifications as per your request, Mr. Mladjenovic, let
10 me ask you this:
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Stojanovic, before you ask this, I just want
12 to get a clarification.
13 You said CK was now clarified. This is the Red Cross. But you
14 changed one word as well. In the original, it says: About 3.000 of them
16 Now you said more than 3.000 left. Could you clarify with the
17 witness what his position is.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I will do so, Your Honours. We
19 are looking at the B/C/S version which creates a problem, but I will ask
20 him anyway.
21 Q. Mr. Mladjenovic, can you please look again at paragraph 18. In
22 the original text, have you ever mentioned that the figure was the one
23 that exceeded 3.000?
24 A. Ladies and gentlemen, these figures varied every month or every
25 week tremendously. In this first wave this figure was recorded by the
1 Foca and Pluzine Red Cross organisation and it was approximately 3.000.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Yes, indeed. "Approximately." That's translated
3 into "about" in the original statement, it is not more than 3.000. I
4 just wanted to clarify what is the correct term in the statement.
5 JUDGE ORIE: This now being clarified, please proceed,
6 Mr. Stojanovic.
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 Q. Now, Mr. Mladjenovic, having provided these clarifications to
9 your statement and after you have given a solemn declaration in this
10 courtroom that you will speak, to the best of your knowledge and
11 recollection, the truth and nothing but the truth, do you fully stand by
12 the statement as it is now in writing before you?
13 A. Yes, I do, and I accept it as mine. Given to this Court, of
15 Q. Thank you.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we please
17 tender the statement of Witness Radojica Mladjenovic, 65 ter 1D01654,
18 into evidence.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
20 THE REGISTRAR: Document 1D1654 receives number D697,
21 Your Honours.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
23 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] With your leave, Your Honours,
24 I'm going to read the summary of this witness's statement and then I will
25 have a few questions for him.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Proceed as you suggest, Mr. Stojanovic.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] After the first multi-party
3 elections in 1990, the witness, Radojica Mladjenovic, as the first person
4 on the SDS ticket at the first multi-party elections in BiH in 1990, was
5 elected president of the Foca municipality executive committee and
6 remained in that position until the end of the war.
7 He directly participated in the negotiations surrounding the
8 establishment of authorities and division of departments in the
9 municipality of Foca. He will discuss the different views concerning the
10 positions that were supposed to be divided between SDS and SDA cadres,
11 the interethnic problems caused by a clash at Focatrans and the growing
12 interethnic tensions.
13 Just before the war broke out in Foca, on the 8th of April, 1992,
14 he participated in an attempt to peacefully divide power. It failed
15 totally, although both sides to the negotiations signed a document on how
16 to divide power locally. On the same day, already in the afternoon, the
17 Muslim side reneged on the agreement it had signed. Fighting
18 intensified. The witness knows that the Muslim side launched an attack
19 on a church using makeshift mortars or a launcher. It led to fighting in
20 the town that lasted for several days.
21 By late July 1992, the Serb side managed to gain control over
22 most of the territory of the municipality of Foca. The witness is
23 personally aware that the Muslims left Foca without being expelled in any
24 way. They followed their leadership, which fled, having previously
25 realised that they would be defeated militarily. He testifies that there
1 is no way that a plan or order for the Muslims to leave Foca existed.
2 They went in the direction of Gorazde on buses or in cars.
3 Finally, the witness will discuss General Mladic's position on
4 paramilitary formations, and he states that he was aware that the KP Dom
5 in Foca was under the authority of the Ministry of Justice of
6 Republika Srpska, and that the appointment of Krnojelac as warden of the
7 KP Dom Foca was motivated by the fact that he was a competent teacher and
8 captain first class.
9 With your leave, Your Honours, I'd like to put a few questions to
10 the witness now.
11 Q. Mr. Mladjenovic, D697, paragraph 3, paragraph 3, you speak about
12 the efforts made after the multi-party elections in Foca in 1990 to have
13 the results of the elections implemented and to share power in the
14 municipality. Were agreements reached in terms of how power would be
15 shared and how the government would function?
16 A. The SDA and the SDS reached agreements to that effect, to resolve
17 all personnel issues, and they proceeded with great difficulty. At the
18 meeting of the assembly on the 25th of December, 1990 - how do I put
19 this? - it was smooth sailing for the late Mr. Lojo and myself, that is
20 to say that they were officially elected already. After that, there was
21 a lot of unexpected things that happened. Things had agreed -- been
22 agreed upon but not implemented until the conflict broke out on the
23 8th of April, 1992; for example, the TO and so on.
24 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have
25 65 ter 1D04509 in e-court, please. Could we please take a look at the
1 second page now and then we'll go back to the beginning of the text. In
2 B/C/S, could we have a look at the second page now.
3 Q. Mr. Mladjenovic, in the lower left-hand corner, is that your
5 A. Yes, precisely. My signature and Taib's signature.
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please go back to the
7 beginning, to the first page in B/C/S.
8 According to this protocol dated the 4th of March, 1992, on
9 behalf of the SDS, as stated here, you reached an agreement with the SDA
10 that was then headed by -- or, rather, Taib Lojo was a participant in
11 these talks. Was this agreement implemented in reality?
12 A. No, it was not. Because practically there wasn't enough time.
13 So the 4th of April -- actually, the 4th of March. Well, it could have
14 been but this was not completed. I think that only the deputy prosecutor
15 was appointed in court or some of the other persons who were candidates.
16 As for all these other matters, all of that was not carried
17 through. So until the 8th of April, Mr. Sulejman Pilav was head of the
18 joint TO and already promulgated head of the Crisis Staff of the SDA so
19 he had a dual role, as it were.
20 Q. At that time, do you have any knowledge about the arming of
21 citizens in the municipality of Foca?
22 A. To tell you the truth, since I'm testifying under oath, there
23 were different rumours that went around town about the arming of Serbs
24 and Muslims and the ways in which this arming was being carried out,
25 either by opening this notorious Focatrans line, that is to say, a bus
1 between Istanbul and Foca, and Split and Foca purportedly for purposes of
2 tourism. So this mess developed in Focatrans and contributed to a
3 feeling of hatred among the two peoples and even Montenegrins, because
4 there were quite a few of them in these companies as well or, rather,
5 this company, Focatrans. That's what I'm saying.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, could document
8 65 ter 1D04509 be admitted into evidence.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Document 1D4509 receives number D698,
11 Your Honours.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] In paragraph 13 -- could we have
14 document D697 in e-court again, please.
15 Q. You speak about a meeting held on the 8th of April, 1992.
16 Paragraph 13.
17 Could you please tell the Court where this meeting was held
18 physically between the most responsible representatives of the Serb and
19 Muslim sides in Foca?
20 A. Could you please show it from the very beginning. Which paper is
21 that? Is that the one that we needed to have signed?
22 Q. Look at paragraph 13.
23 A. 13? All right.
24 Q. You say a meeting was held on the 8th of April, 1992.
25 Now this is what I'm asking you.
1 A. Oh, yes, yes, yes.
2 Q. Would you tell the Court where the meeting was held physically?
3 A. The meeting was held in my office and the initiative was of the
4 late Mr. Taib Lojo as president of the Assembly, and he was practically
5 the president of the National Defence Council ex officio. It was
6 attended by all members of the executive committee that were elected to
7 that position by the assembly. I remember all five of them and I was the
8 sixth one and there was Taib Lojo and my secretary who was taking notes,
9 taking down the minutes. If I need to provide the name -- names.
10 Q. No, not really.
11 A. They were legally and legitimately elected at the joint session
12 of the assembly. I mean, Serbs and Muslims together, certainly. And on
13 that day, practically, irrespective of all these variants --
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: [Previous translation continues] ... I think the
15 question is answered with the first sentence.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Very well. Yes, that's right.
17 Thank you.
18 Q. What was the purpose of that meeting, Mr. Mladjenovic?
19 A. The purpose of this meeting was at least a last-ditch attempt,
20 since there were so many discussions, and especially I and Mr. Taib at
21 the time, to find any solution just in order to prevent a war. We were
22 even prepared to divide the territory on the basis of reciprocity so no
23 one would move from their land. The essence was that the Muslim -- that
24 the local communes or villages, rather, where the population was
25 predominantly Muslim, or Bosniak, if you will, that that territory should
1 be annexed to the territory of the Muslim part, although there were some
2 Serb families there. And the other way around.
3 Q. Just a moment, please, I have to stop you here. Tell us, how
4 long did this meeting last, to the best of your recollection?
5 A. I think it started about 8.00. It lasted, say, an hour, an hour
6 and a half, and then there was this cannonade or explosion. Under the
7 hill of Celovine, there's the KP Dom. And at that time, the KP Dom
8 people were released. I really don't know who released them, so it was
9 Serbs and Muslims all of them were released. Murderers included. And
10 then they started running towards that hill and reached the forest. And
11 then this explosion went off. I was facing that area with my back. We
12 all jumped to our feet. And then panic prevailed. We started thinking
13 about what to do, and then later on there was a curfew that was imposed
14 and so on and so forth and --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Once the witness has answered your question - he did
16 after the first two lines - then you can put your next question to the
17 witness, Mr. Stojanovic. Apart from whether it would change either the
18 Prosecution's or the Defence case considerably if the meeting had lasted
19 three hours or half an hour. I mean, relevance of the length of that
20 meeting is uncertain.
21 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. At one moment, did you conclude an agreement, nevertheless, as
23 negotiators on that day?
24 A. Yes. The secretary of the municipality, who was a Muslim, was
25 making things a bit difficult. But, as you can see, on the basis of
1 these signatures, an agreement was reached. I have the original with
2 different pens, pencils, et cetera, but it is an authentic document
3 and --
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes was the answer to your question.
5 Please proceed.
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. D582. Could we please
7 have that document in e-court now.
8 Q. Mr. Mladjenovic, is this the text of the agreement that you
9 signed together on that day on that occasion?
10 A. The text or, rather, the content of the text, is comprehensive
11 and correct. However, at least in this variant that you're showing me,
12 there is something missing. You can only see part of my signature and
13 Taib's signature can be seen. However, there are five or six signatures.
14 I have the original. All the participants of the meeting were given a
15 copy of their own so we were standing there and I was writing in my
16 notebook who was supposed to do what, what the Crisis Staff was supposed
17 to, and the police that was then called milicija, then we, I and Mr. Taib
18 what we were supposed to. Are we supposed to impose a curfew through the
19 media, or are we supposed to introduce a state of emergency or emergency
20 measures. I believe that that is the last point.
21 Q. Thank you. Tell us, on the original document, can we find your
22 signature and the signature of Taib Lojo?
23 A. Yes, and five other persons, Muslims and Serbs.
24 Q. Thank you, and I'm going to conclude with this question: Who was
25 it that caused the non-implementation of this agreement and the outbreak
1 of hostilities in Foca?
2 A. It was my profound hope that we would work towards a solution on
3 the basis of these points. You can see here who was in charge of what,
4 the KP Dom, et cetera. However, the members of the executive committee,
5 Mr. Varajic, my school friend, and Mr. Varajic to hand over to them the
6 request of the Crisis Staff that was dictated by Minister Ostojic,
7 actually, we were still in the municipality, already there was gun-fire
8 and we parted, we went in different ways and --
9 Q. The question was -- the question was, according to you, who was
10 responsible for the failure of the implementation of this agreement and
11 who started the conflict in Foca?
12 A. Obviously the Muslim side. Because they were first to start
13 shooting, and, secondly, they never came with an affirmative answer that
14 they accepted it. So, actually, we were never told whether they accepted
15 it or rejected it.
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Mladjenovic. I have no further questions for you.
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have no further
19 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Stojanovic.
20 Ms. Bibles, are you ready to start your cross-examination.
21 MS. BIBLES: Yes, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Mladjenovic, you will now be cross-examined by
23 Ms. Bibles. You will find her to your right. Ms. Bibles is counsel for
24 the Prosecution.
25 Please proceed.
1 MS. BIBLES: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Cross-examination by Ms. Bibles:
3 Q. Good morning.
4 A. Good morning to you too.
5 Q. Sir, I'd like to start by going through your evidence
6 chronologically. Will you confirm that the Serbian municipality of Foca
7 was formed on the 21st of December, 1991?
8 A. The Serbian municipality of Foca was formed, I think, on the 25th
9 of December, 1991. Following the model that was implemented at the
10 republican level after the separation and outvoting and so on and so
11 forth. And I'm talking about the BH assembly.
12 Q. Sir, in paragraph 10 of your statement, your Mladic statement,
13 you describe the creation of the Assembly of the Serbian People. Just to
14 be clear, are we talking about or are you describing the assembly in
15 Foca? Just very simply that question.
16 A. Can you please -- is it something on -- on paper?
17 Q. I believe Mr. --
18 A. I don't know which context you're asking me about General Mladic
19 because he wasn't there. He was not present either in the army --
20 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... witness, let me
21 stop you there. Ms. Bibles referred to the statement you've given, and I
22 see that you're reading the transcript. If you listen to the
23 interpretation in your own language, that may avoid confusions like the
24 one we just heard about.
25 Could you please repeat your question.
1 MS. BIBLES:
2 Q. Sir, I'd ask you because of your reading of the transcript, do
3 you speak or read English?
4 A. No, unfortunately not.
5 JUDGE ORIE: I was mistaken when I thought that the witness was
6 reading the transcript, whereas he is apparently reading on what appears
7 on e-court.
8 Please proceed.
9 MS. BIBLES:
10 Q. Sir, what I asked, simply, is, in your statement for this trial,
11 you describe the creation of the Assembly of the Serbian People. Are you
12 describing the assembly -- in that paragraph, are you describing the
13 assembly in Foca?
14 A. Yes, yes. And representatives of who were legitimately elected
15 of the socialist party became deputies as well.
16 Q. I was simply looking, wanting to clarify that you were talking
17 about the assembly in Foca.
18 Now in paragraph 10 where you talk about this process, you
19 explained further that this was: "Following this model without any
20 specific initiative from a higher level, there ensued the setting up of
21 organs 'just in case'."
22 Sir I want to ask some questions about this section of your
23 statement. Before I do that, I want to confirm, did you attend the
24 extended session of the Social Democratic Party Main Board and executive
25 committee which was held in Sarajevo on 14 February 1992?
1 A. Yes, yes.
2 Q. I'd like to play an audio clip of a statement that we believe you
3 made to this body. I'll ask that we play just from the beginning to, I
4 believe, it's a minute, 26. For the booths, the English translation this
5 would begin at the beginning of the transcript and it goes to the second
6 page at line 6. In B/C/S, it's from the bottom of the page, the first
7 page, to 14 lines down in the second page.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Would playing it once be sufficient, Ms. Bibles, or
9 should it be played twice in order to allow our interpreters to verify
10 whether the transcript reflect what is heard in the audio?
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could the counsel give us
12 the number of the document.
13 MS. BIBLES: [Previous translation continues] ... I forgot to give
14 the 65 ter number, which is 10925A. And I understand that we will need
15 to play this twice.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Then let's play it now for the first time. The
17 interpreters have found the document. Yes. Let's get started.
18 [Audiotape played]
19 JUDGE ORIE: It went on until 1 minute, 29:3.
20 Witness, we'll play it again. You'll hear it again. The Chamber
21 will now receive interpretation.
22 [Audiotape played]
23 "Radojica Mladjenovic: I am speaking on behalf of the Serbian
24 Executive Committee of Foca municipality and that other one that is
25 slowly dying. I do not wish to participate in the debate here, but I
1 would like to ask some questions that I would like to find answers to,
2 that is, I, as a representative of the people in Foca municipality,
3 Serbian people of Foca municipality, considering the fact that we did
4 everything that the central office had requested us to do, and
5 considering the instructions we received in this field when setting up
6 the Serbian Assembly and Executive Committee. We got far ahead with the
7 work of the Executive Committee for a simple reason, at least with some
8 operational issues by which we wish to finally round up the Serbian
9 territory of Foca municipality within the Serbian Autonomous Region of
10 Herzegovina. Of course, we wouldn't think of resolving the Serbian
11 territory in Bosnia and Herzegovina partially. For these reasons, I find
12 it necessary to, first of all, establish Serbian municipalities
13 regardless of the borders of existing municipalities, that is the case
14 with us, and we will not have any regard for that. In the same
15 manner ..."
16 MS. BIBLES: Thank you.
17 Q. Sir, do you accept that this is your voice speaking on the
18 14th of February, 1992?
19 A. Yes, yes, it is.
20 Q. Sir, in this 1992 audio recording, we've heard you say that in
21 setting up the Serbian Assembly and the Executive Committee in Foca that
22 you did everything that the central office requested, according to the
23 instructions. Do you agree that these were the instructions which were
24 received from the Main Board of the SDS?
25 A. As far as the instructions allegedly from the central office are
1 concerned, but they are mentioned here, all of this pertained to Foca
2 municipality, and the structure which, by inertia, simply mimicked the
3 happenings at the republican level, so applied the same analogy. Which
4 is to say on 25th of December, 1992, we set up our assembly, as I said,
5 just in case, the people of Foca, both Muslims and Serbs --
6 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps the witness could end that sentence.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They had some very bad experiences
8 in the past so that everybody was afraid of everybody. In view of the
9 First World War, the Second World War --
10 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, just answer the question. The question was
11 whether these were instructions that you received from the Main Board of
12 the SDS.
13 Now you started your answer, by saying: "As far as the
14 instructions allegedly from the central office," who alleged that? Isn't
15 it that you yourself did so?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "Central office" can be interpreted
17 in different ways, and in different situations.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Did you use those words?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I finish, please?
20 JUDGE ORIE: No, you may not. You may -- did you use those
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I did. That's what I said.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Next question, please, Ms. Bibles.
24 MS. BIBLES:
25 Q. Sir, the Chamber has received evidence that just days before the
1 Foca Assembly was established, that the Main Board of the SDS issued
2 detailed instructions that Serb assemblies should be created.
3 The Prosecution theory in this case is that the setting up of
4 separate Serbian municipal organs in Foca occurred as a direct result of
5 a plan from the Bosnian Serb leadership that was applied all over Bosnia.
6 The contradiction between your written statement for this trial in 2014
7 and your words spoken in 1992 make it appear that you are trying to hide
8 this overarching plan for the creation of the Serbian state in
9 Bosnia and Herzegovina.
10 What do you say to that?
11 A. If you were listening carefully, in one segment, it says that no
12 setting up should be contrary to what was happening all over
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina and in order to make it even clearer, all the efforts
14 that were made, and I must say that, the municipality assembly of Foca
15 never became operational prior to the 8th of April, 1994. Not even the
16 Executive Committee which was established on the 3rd of April. So this
17 absolutely cannot be consistent with this proposition. In other words,
18 nobody was making any preparations, and according to the information that
19 we have from JNA organs relating to the army and the similar things, the
20 Muslims and the Croats had a huge advantage because the Serbs believed
21 that Bosnia-Herzegovina will remain in Yugoslavia and that we shall have
22 only one army which will contribute to solving the problems.
23 JUDGE ORIE: It looks as if you're moving away from the question.
24 What Ms. Bibles puts to you, and I'll try to say it short --
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have no other intention other
1 than to provide clarification. That's all I wish to do. I don't want to
2 deviate from the subject.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Ms. Bibles puts to you that in your statement you
4 say it was all our own initiative; whereas, in the audio you are saying
5 that you did everything that the central office had requested you to do
6 and that you acted upon instructions you received in this field when
7 setting up the Serbian Assembly and Executive Committee.
8 Ms. Bibles apparently sees some contradiction in what you state
9 and what she heard in the audio and is asking a comment on that
10 specifically, the contradiction between the two: Own initiative, or
11 following instructions.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Concerning the instructions, given
13 that we had representatives in the republican authorities and one of them
14 was Mr. Maksimovic, the chairman of the Deputies Club, we used this
15 information in order to copy, so to say, what was happening at the
16 republican level. In other words, in the National Assembly of Serbs in
17 BH as it was originally called, just so that in a case of certain
18 situations occurring, we would be prepared, sort of. That's all.
19 The other subject discussed was the sloppiness --
20 JUDGE ORIE: Let me interrupt you again. It seems that
21 Ms. Bibles is not talking about following an example and a national
22 Assembly of Serbs in BH but she's talking about instructions given by the
23 SDS Main Board. So apparently you are talking at cross-purposes.
24 Whether or not you received and followed instructions, as you said, by
25 the central office; and I understand Ms. Bibles to understand your
1 statement as referring to the SDS Main Board and not to the National
2 Assembly of Serbs in BH.
3 Could you please focus on that.
4 Ms. Bibles, if I understood you well.
5 MS. BIBLES: [Microphone not activated] That's correct.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If it is necessary, I can repeat,
7 that I emphasise that all of this relates only to Foca municipality. If
8 you wish, you can hear the audio once again, and you can hear that it
9 relates to Foca.
10 Anyway, the Dayton Accords divided the municipality of Foca into
11 two parts.
12 JUDGE ORIE: No one is claiming that it is not about Foca.
13 You're speaking about having followed all the instructions, and we
14 understand that to be in the Foca context.
15 The issue is in your statement you say it was not without any
16 specific initiative from a higher level, whereas Ms. Bibles puts to you
17 that -- in your audio you say that you implemented all the instructions
18 you received, which means that there was an initiative from the higher
19 level because there were instructions. That's the issue; nothing else.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand what you're saying,
21 absolutely. I think that contacts with the central office, according to
22 the hierarchy, were few and far between, and it happened only when it was
23 really necessary between myself - not only myself, I'm not trying to
24 justify what I did - but also with all the people who were at the core of
25 all the events and who were, at the same time, representatives of Foca,
1 whether as deputies or in other bodies.
2 So these contacts may, ultimately, be considered to be something
3 that was sent in form of recommendations from the central office rather
4 than orders, because there were no orders whatsoever.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Had you received any instructions from the central
6 office in setting up the Serbian organs in Foca?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No instructions were received for
8 the setting up of organs. We only followed the model that was in place
9 following the walking out of the assembly of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Serbs
10 on one side and Muslims and Croats on both sides, and the dates can be --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Do you have any explanation as why you said in this
12 speech: "And considering the instructions we received in this field,"
13 because you're now saying you didn't receive any instructions, that needs
14 an explanation, why you said that you did receive and why you now say you
15 did not receive instructions.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Probably in plural, because, as I
17 already said, there were various sources, including the deputies in the
18 assembly, the president of the Deputies Club. So I used the plural. I,
19 myself, did not directly receive any guidance as to the setting up of
20 this -- these organs because there was no government formed at the level
21 of the Serbian Bosnia-Herzegovina assembly only. Later on, we elected
22 new members to the Executive Committee once we went our separate ways
23 with other members of the administration.
24 JUDGE ORIE: If that's your explanation, I'll invite Ms. Bibles
25 to put her next question to you.
1 MS. BIBLES: Thank you, Your Honour. And, actually, I'm looking
2 at the clock. I believe it might be time for a break.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, it's time for a break.
4 Witness, we'd like to see you back in 20 minutes from now. You
5 may follow the usher.
6 [The witness stands down]
7 JUDGE ORIE: We'll resume at 11.00.
8 --- Recess taken at 10.39 a.m.
9 --- On resuming at 11.03 a.m.
10 MS. BIBLES: Your Honour --
11 JUDGE ORIE: -- Ms. Bibles.
12 MS. BIBLES: I may be able to use the few seconds here. I would
13 tender 65 ter 10925A, which was the audio recording.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Document 10925A receives number P6834,
16 Your Honours.
17 JUDGE ORIE: P6834 is admitted.
18 MS. BIBLES: And to speed the next two questions, we could also
19 go to P3038, and we'll stay on page 1.
20 [The witness takes the stand]
21 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Ms. Bibles.
22 MS. BIBLES: Thank you.
23 Q. Sir, there's a document coming up on the screen, P3038 which I'd
24 like to you look at. I'm going to show you two pages on this document
25 and then I'm going to ask you one question.
1 The document that we see in front of us indicates that it is from
2 the SDS Main Board. It is titled: "Instructions for the organisation
3 and operation of organs of the Serbian people in Bosnia and Herzegovina
4 in emergency conditions," and it's dated 19 December 1991.
5 Now, if we could turn to pages 7 in both English and B/C/S, and
6 we'll be focussing on point 4, please.
7 Sir, you'll see in point 4 of this page that, in part, the
8 instructions direct to: "Convene and proclaim an assembly of the Serbian
9 people in the municipality composed of assemblymen, representatives of
10 the Serbian people in the municipal assembly and presidents of SDS local
12 And I'll stop reading there. But, sir, isn't it true -- is it
13 true that this is exactly what occurred in Foca on the 25th of
14 December in 1991?
15 A. It is correct the assembly was convened by the president of the
16 municipal SDS board, the late Miro Stanic, who was the president of the
17 party at the time, and that is when the assembly was formed, composed of
18 all Serbian Assemblymen who were members of the reformist party, the
19 Communist party, and the SDS, and it also included members or, rather,
20 presidents of SDS local boards in villages and towns, some 20-odd of
21 them, if I'm not mistaken.
22 Q. Sir, we're not going to go point by point through every aspect of
23 this instruction. Wouldn't you agree -- or don't you agree that it's
24 very clear that what was happening in Foca was exactly what was described
25 in these instructions?
1 A. As for the knowledge about this initiative, was something that
2 was conveyed to the president of the party. If he did receive any, any
3 way he should have received some kind of instruction as how to act in
4 Foca municipality, because you can see for yourself, that this relates to
6 Q. Sir, it's true, isn't it, that the organisation which began to
7 occur in December of 1991 in Foca was according to these instructions
8 which it appears were given out to Serbian people all over Bosnia. Isn't
9 that true?
10 A. It turns out that that could be true.
11 Q. Thank you. We'll move on now from this document and quickly go
12 through just a couple of other areas, sir.
13 First, you were elected as chairman of the Executive Committee of
14 the Assembly of Serbian People in Foca; correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And then move -- sir, moving forward in time, on 3 April 1992,
17 the Assembly of the Serbian Municipality of Foca established the
18 Foca Crisis Staff; is that correct?
19 A. That is correct. The 3rd and the 4th -- actually, the 3rd of
20 April, 1992.
21 Q. And if we could now have 65 ter 8611B on our screens, we'll be
22 looking at page 2 in the original and page 3 in the English.
23 Sir, the document that will be coming up on our screen is a
24 section of the Official Gazette of the Serbian municipality of Foca.
25 We'll see a list of people beginning with Miroslav Stanic. We'll wait
1 for that list to come up.
2 While we're doing that -- oops. It appears the list is there on
3 the B/C/S, or ...
4 A. Yes, yes.
5 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... now second on the list --
6 A. Yes, yes, yes.
7 Q. Second on the list is the president of the party and the
8 president of the municipality, I believe it is Josef Milicic; correct?
9 A. The second one, yes. I'm the third one and so on. Until number
11 Q. And can you --
12 A. It was on the basis of the office held.
13 Q. Sir, can you confirm that the list of individuals here comprised
14 the Crisis Staff in Foca?
15 A. Not Foca. Rather, the Serb part of the people of Foca, if I can
16 put it that way, because the Muslims also had their Crisis Staff.
17 Q. Thank you. Thank you for that clarification.
18 MS. BIBLES: And with that, Your Honour, I move to tender
19 65 ter 8611B which would be the entire section on the Crisis Staff
21 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Document 8611B receives number P6835,
23 Your Honours.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
25 MS. BIBLES:
1 Q. Now, sir, earlier today - I believe on temporary transcript
2 page 16 - you indicated that Velibor Ostojic was present in Foca on the
3 8th of April, 1992; is that correct?
4 A. I think so. I think - how do I put this? - I think he was the
5 Crisis Staff -- on the premises of the Crisis Staff but that is not
6 exactly likely either. I think he was in one of the family homes there,
7 because he seemed very scared. I don't know how to put this. But he
8 came and he dictated these 16 points, and I handed them over to
9 Mr. Varajic and Dzemo Aganovic. Later on, of course.
10 Q. And, sir, is it correct that in addition to being the
11 Republika Srpska minister of information, Ostojic was also, at that time,
12 the state commissioner for Foca municipality?
13 A. At one point in time, he was the first commissioner, actually.
14 And then later on there was a change, Vojislav Maksimovic, and then he
15 didn't turn out to be the right solution. And then MP Mijetovic from
16 Trebinje was in that position.
17 Q. Now, sir, you were on the Crisis Staff. You were also president
18 of the Executive Committee, so you had a leadership role in Foca. Would
19 you agree that, as such, you were a person in Foca municipality who made
20 efforts to find out what was going on in Foca in April and May of 1992?
21 A. You're not right on each and every point. I wish you were.
22 Because already in May, many things looked different. Units that nobody
23 invited are coming, and obviously the motives are looting and something
24 else. I, or, rather, Foca as a town -- I mean --
25 Q. Sir, I need to apologise. I don't think I asked a precise
1 question and perhaps I can go forward in a way that will make more sense.
2 In paragraph 15 of your statement, you discuss things like
3 finding out about the release of prisoners from KP Dom, and you describe
4 at some point there was fighting around the health centre. Now, you
5 explain - and that's what I want to clarify - it appears that you explain
6 that you were aware of this because you were listening to information
7 from ham radio operators.
8 First, is that correct? Is that a part of how you were receiving
10 A. I want to tell the truth. No one had invited them, these
11 paramilitaries --
12 Q. Sir --
13 A. -- about 70 men --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, listen to the question, answer the
15 question. Ms. Bibles will define what she'd like to hear from you.
16 Therefore, did you receive that information by listening to -- or least
17 partly by listening to the ham radio operators?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Ham radio operators, or
19 Radio Sarajevo, if that's what you mean. 5.000 Chetniks arriving in
20 Foca, that's the statement made by Radio Sarajevo. And --
21 JUDGE ORIE: I'm going to stop you now. If you want this Chamber
22 to include your evidence when we are considering this case, then you're
23 advised to answer the questions. No one asked you what was broadcasted.
24 What was asked was whether you received information through the means of
25 listening to those radio operators.
1 Did you, or did you not?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, but if ham radio operators
3 are considered to be radio information I mean, I think that that was the
4 question and that is what the lady was getting at. So ham radio
5 operators and I mean, in my statement I -- well, I allow for that.
6 JUDGE ORIE: No. Not what you allow for, but did you receive
7 information by listening to this radio broadcast of -- ham radio
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Ms. Bibles.
11 MS. BIBLES: Thank you. I now want to shift gears and just
12 confirm -- actually, if we could go to P2820.
13 Q. Sir, this is a Belgrade Radio report regarding events in Foca.
14 It's a report given by Velibor Ostojic. You've confirmed that Ostojic
15 was in Foca municipality on the 8th of April, 1992.
16 A. Yes, yes.
17 Q. You -- can you confirm, then, that he was reporting to the
18 outside world what was going -- the events in Foca on the 8th of April,
20 A. That I don't know, and I wasn't present. As for this text -- oh,
21 all right.
22 Q. That's all. Moving on now to P2824, sir, this is a report from
23 Ostojic - it will be coming up on your screen - dated 30 April 1992. I
24 see the B/C/S version has come up. You'll see that Ostojic reports that
25 Foca Serbian TO liberated the area of Ustikolina he also reported that
1 the Serb TO in Foca was making efforts in the rest of the area to clean
2 up - or he uses the word "ciscenje" - Foca. Can you tell us - simple yes
3 or no - whether you know if Ostojic was in Foca on the 30th of April,
5 A. I don't remember the 30th. Just may I explain this, please, I
6 came to the municipality as the civilian representative or rather I
7 informed or rather activated the work of the Executive Council on the
8 19th. Now the 30th, I don't think so, because he himself admitted that
9 he felt that he bothered us and he went to Pale, I think. When, I cannot
10 say, really, believe me.
11 Q. So let's -- let's slow this down just a little bit. If I
12 understand your testimony correctly, Ostojic if I'm understanding it
13 right on the 19th, or in this time-period, expressed that he felt like he
14 was bothering you. Now, by "bothering us," I think is the phrase you
15 used, does that mean the authorities in Foca municipality?
16 A. Bothering us. Well, he said it himself.
17 Q. All right. So after that, Ostojic went back to Pale; is that
19 A. To Pale, because the government was supposed to be established
20 and so on and so forth.
21 Q. So let's go back now to the document on the screen. Can you
22 confirm that the events that he describes in this report are accurate?
23 A. Just a moment, please. April? I'm not sure. I'm not sure that
24 that is accurate enough or, rather, that it is accurate. Or it's a
25 half-truth. Because in Ustikolina in these village, there were Muslim
1 forces present as well. So it's not reliable, as far as I'm concerned.
2 Q. We'll move on then. And I do want to talk about some of the
3 forces. And we can take this from the screen.
4 In terms of Serb forces that were part of what I believe you
5 refer to as the liberation of Foca, I just want to ask you a very few
6 limited questions about a group of 60 men that were referred to as the
7 Belgrade battalion.
8 You agree that this group was led by a man whose last name was
10 A. No, no. There's some confusion there. The Belgrade group or,
11 rather, the people who lived in Belgrade but who originally came from
12 Celebici, Zejt [phoen], Mestrovac, these villages, they came as
13 volunteers and they withdrew on the day when the JNA withdrew. As for
14 Lainovic is concerned, that is that special group that created such a
15 mess in Foca that it spilled over throughout Herzegovina almost because
16 their motto was basically just to loot and --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, was there a group known under the name as
18 Belgrade battalion?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, we called them the Belgrade
20 battalion because --
21 JUDGE ORIE: So was that a group of approximately 60 men?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Approximately 60 men. All of them
23 originally from that area --
24 JUDGE ORIE: No, I'm not asking where they came from. I asked
25 you about the size. Approximately 60 men.
1 By whom were they led? What person was leading them?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Bodiroga. I'm not sure of his
3 first name. An elderly man. They wore uniforms and --
4 JUDGE ORIE: I'm not asking you what they were wearing I asked
5 you who was leading them.
6 Did Mr. Lainovic have anything to do with this group?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Bodiroga. No he had an independent
9 JUDGE ORIE: You've answered the questions.
10 Please proceed.
11 MS. BIBLES: Thank you.
12 Q. Can you confirm that the Belgrade battalion participated in
13 events in Foca relating to the liberation of Foca but withdrew in the
14 middle of May 1992?
15 A. This so-called Belgrade battalion came after the 15th of April.
16 After the 15th of April. And a large part of that unit was securing the
17 hospital that is, say, 2 or 3 kilometres away from the separation line.
18 Downstream towards Gorazde, if you look at the Drina River.
19 Q. Is it true that they left Foca or they withdrew from Foca in the
20 middle --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Ms. Bibles, could we please have an answer to the
22 previous question.
23 Did they participate in the events in Foca relating to the
24 liberation? Or should we understand your answer to be that securing the
25 hospital was part of that operation?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Correct. But after that, they were
2 involved or they were subordinated, in military terms, to the
3 Territorial Defence Staff, the Serb units, that is, up until that date.
4 JUDGE ORIE: You say after that. Beginning on what date exactly
5 were they subordinated to the TO Defence Staff? If you don't know, tell
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I cannot say specifically or
8 precisely whether they withdrew on the 15th of May, around the 15th of
9 May, and then they arrived on the 15th of April. Believe me, I cannot
10 engage in guess-work --
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We did not understand the
12 last part of the sentence.
13 JUDGE ORIE: What did you say after you said: "I cannot engage
14 in guess-work" because the interpreters didn't catch the last portion of
15 your answer.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I cannot state with certainty
17 when it was that they joined the TO units.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Ms. Bibles.
19 MS. BIBLES: Thank you.
20 Q. Sir, perhaps it would be helpful for us to bring up a section of
21 your testimony when you testified here in the Karadzic case.
22 MS. BIBLES: If we could go to 65 ter 31459.
23 Q. And, sir, there is your testimony from the 5th of April, 2013.
24 MS. BIBLES: If we could go to page 31.
25 Q. Sir, we do not have this transcript in B/C/S so you don't need to
1 look at the screen. I will try to read the relevant portions of this to
3 See if this assists you. Starting at line 4, you were asked a
5 "Mr. Mladjenovic, we were just coming onto discuss the Serb
6 forces that remained in Foca area after the JNA withdrawal.
7 "Now, the civilian authorities in Foca closely liaised with the
8 military authorities in pursuit of their shared goals, didn't they?"
9 Your answer was this: "I have to correct you straight away.
10 Military formations and paramilitaries that appeared at the very
11 beginning of the war in Foca - on the 15th of May, the
12 Army of Republika Srpska was ... set up, and they withdrew. It was not a
13 battalion. There were some 60 men or so. That's what we called them,
14 because the locals who hailed from Belgrade and Foca - and, for that
15 reason, that's what we called them."
16 Sir, do you stand by your testimony with respect to the -- the
17 withdrawal of these units on the 15th of May, 1992?
18 A. As far as I can remember, they withdrew on the 15th, or, at the
19 latest, when the JNA had to withdraw.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 A. But I think it was on the 15th, though.
22 Q. Is it also true that after 12 May 1992, when the VRS was created,
23 that the military situation for Serbian Foca was more organised and
25 A. The situation improved only after the 28th of June, 1992, when
1 the brigade was formed. The Foca Light Brigade, if I'm not mistaken.
2 And from then onwards, there was this organised military structure.
3 After that, came the tactical group and so on and so forth.
4 Q. Now, sir, thank you. Thank you. And I ...
5 I want to direct your attention to the 16th Assembly of the RS
6 which occurred on 12 May 1992 in Banja Luka. Were you present for that
8 A. No, because I wasn't a Member of Parliament now.
9 Q. Do you know who represented Foca in the assembly?
10 A. I think I do know. Of course, if they went or if they could have
11 gone, it should have been Vojislav Maksimovic and Petko Cancar. They
12 were the MPs from the ranks of the Serb people.
13 Q. When did you hear that Ratko Mladic was the head of the VRS?
14 A. I think that I heard that a day or two later, after the decision
15 was made at this same assembly that the Army of Republika Srpska should
16 be established.
17 Q. I want to turn now to some interactions between the Crisis Staff
18 in Foca and the Executive Committee in Foca between those two organs and
19 the republic-level government after 12 May 1992?
20 MS. BIBLES: If we could have 65 ter 15977, please.
21 Q. Sir, this is a request from the Republika Srpska government
22 directed to the Foca Crisis Staff. As this document is coming up, I'll
23 ask if you know who Veljko Kostovic is? And I see that you're looking at
24 the B/C/S documents. We see --
25 A. Veljko?
1 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... I apologise. My
2 pronunciation may have been off.
3 A. I don't know. I mean, the signature -- oh yes, Veljko Kostovic I
4 know him. He was director of the Official Gazette of Republika Srpska.
5 Q. And, sir, we see that this is actually a document dated
6 23 May 1992, stamped from the RS Bosnia-Herzegovina government and it's
7 requesting that gentleman to be the editor of the Official Gazette of the
8 Serbian People in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
9 So based on your response, you'll confirm that this request from
10 the RS government to the Crisis Staff was granted?
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We did not hear the
13 JUDGE ORIE: Could you repeat your answer.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In all frankness, I don't think
15 that this got through the Crisis Staff. Because Mr. Kostovic at the time
16 was staying in the village of ... near the village of Borovnici that's
17 perhaps a kilometre away. In a family home.
18 MS. BIBLES:
19 Q. Sir --
20 A. -- but down this military line he probably received information
21 and --
22 Q. Okay.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry --
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't remember.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: This document is addressed to the Crisis Staff
1 Foca, not to Mr. Kostovic. So it would have been received by the Crisis
2 Staff Foca and the Crisis Staff Foca would communicate with Mr. Kostovic
3 the request contained here. Isn't it so? I see you're nodding. Can you
4 just say in words what you --
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Quite possibly. Quite possibly. I
6 was a member of the Crisis Staff, but already from the 19th of April,
7 that is to say --
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: All I wanted to know this is document is addressed
9 to the Crisis Staff. I'm not asking you about your membership.
10 Yes, thank you, Madam Bibles.
11 MS. BIBLES:
12 Q. Sir --
13 A. Probably.
14 Q. -- at temporary page 38, you described this individual is -- was
15 director of the Official Gazette of Republika Srpska. I was inferring
16 that that meant that this request was granted by the Foca Crisis Staff;
17 is that correct?
18 A. Until after the war.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 MS. BIBLES: And I would tender --
21 JUDGE ORIE: It's not an answer to the question. And --
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Very probably.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Of course, the two are not the same, Ms. Bibles.
24 Him finally becoming or having that position doesn't mean that he went
25 with the permission of the Crisis Staff. He could have gone there
1 otherwise but that's let's leave it. You confirm that he took up that
2 position and stayed in that position until the end of the war.
3 Please proceed.
4 MS. BIBLES: And I would tender 15977.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. Until 2000, roughly.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Document 15977 receives number P6836,
8 Your Honours.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted.
10 MS. BIBLES:
11 Q. Now, sir, I want to look at an example of the Foca local
12 authority -- Serbian local authorities reaching out to the republic
14 MS. BIBLES: If we could see P2822 on our screens, please.
15 Q. Sir, this is a document signed by Miroslav Stanic on 18 June --
16 or the document that's coming up. On 18 June 1992 regarding decisions to
17 allow Muslims to leave Foca municipality. If you see the number 1 about
18 halfway down the page, the line I want to look at is just above that
19 where it reads: "The War Commission has discussed the issue with the
20 government envoy in the [sic] Bosnia-Herzegovina Serbian republic and
21 concluded the following... "
22 Who was the envoy?
23 A. Just a moment let me look at the date. I think that was
24 Professor Dr. Vojislav Maksimovic. I am quite certain, because I think
25 he was there at the time. Yes, yes, he was.
1 Q. And I'd next like to look at number 5 which will require turning
2 to page 2 in the B/C/S version.
3 Sir I'd like you to direct your attention to number 5 in the
5 This describes that the Executive Committee would draw up a list
6 of property that would remain in Foca, meaning that it couldn't leave
8 Was this property that belonged to Muslims who were leaving?
9 A. Absolutely not. Because the Executive Committee formulated the
10 protection of property of both Muslims and Serbs in a different ways.
11 Quite a few Serbs left either for Belgrade or for Montenegro, so this
12 encompasses both their property, houses and flats. I don't know what he
13 meant when he spoke about businesses and companies. I don't think that
14 is relevant.
15 Q. So, sir, you were on the Executive Committee; correct?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Was this list drawn up?
18 A. I don't remember that. Let me just briefly take a look.
19 To tell you the truth, I'm not familiar with this document. Even
20 though it assigned some tasks to the Executive Committee, but I don't
21 remember seeing this piece of paper.
22 Q. Now, sir, when we first looked at this document and I asked you
23 whether this was property belonging to Muslims, you had an answer with
24 respect to property which was Serb -- if I understand it correctly, was
25 Serbian houses and flats. Am I understanding that right, in terms of the
1 property that this would be referring to?
2 A. The Executive Committee issued an order or, rather, proposed an
3 order to be issued by the army and the police to print some instructions
4 to the effect that all the flats and houses that had been abandoned, of
5 course, not forever, to be sealed off, that this should be monitored by
6 the civilian police and they acted accordingly. Even the process itself
7 started but during a chaotic period of time in Foca, after which I had to
8 intervene with government, seeking assistance to resolve the situation.
9 This whole process was suspended. I believe that there is a form
10 stipulating all the rules as to who was going to monitor this, including
11 the military police and the civilian police.
12 Q. Sir, the --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Could I seek clarification of one of the previous
15 MS. BIBLES: Yes.
16 JUDGE ORIE: You said that: "Because the Executive Committee
17 formulated," and now it disappears from my screen. One second, please.
18 You said: "Because the Executive Committee formulated the
19 protection of property of both Muslims and Serbs in a different ways,"
20 that's unclear to me.
21 Could you explain in what way the protection of property of
22 Muslims and Serbs was different?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, you absolutely misunderstood
24 me. This same piece of paper was to be posted on the front door of both
25 Serbs and Muslims' flats who abandoned them. And that was something that
1 the civilian police, or milicija, and the military police were charged
2 with monitoring the process, because at the beginning of war, a large
3 number of Serbs left the area via Pluzine or in some other manner.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Ms. Bibles.
5 MS. BIBLES:
6 Q. You've described this property, if I'm understanding it be
7 correctly, to be Serb homes or flats. Now, number 5, this indicates that
8 the Executive Committee is to draw up a list of property that will remain
9 in Foca, meaning property that cannot be transported under any
11 What kinds of property -- that does not sound like flats or
12 houses. So what kind of property is this describing?
13 A. If I understood you correctly, and I think I did, in both Muslim
14 and Serb shops, there was some intermediate material that happened to be
15 there. The Executive Committee set up a commission - you can find all
16 the documents - to arrange for the evacuation of some of the equipment
17 and in order for do that, the walls had to be torn down and they were all
18 put in central store house. Roof tiles, met tall sheet, et cetera. All
19 these records still exist to this very day.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Ms. Bibles, I think there is a reason for
21 misinterpretation. You said and referring to paragraph 5, "property that
22 cannot be transported under any circumstances," but I read "under current
23 circumstances." I think this is really different. You should clarify
25 MS. BIBLES: Yes, thank you, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: I also had some clarification to ask from you,
2 Madam Bibles you said what kinds of property this is - page 44, line 5 -
3 that does not sound like flats or houses. Now I would have thought, in
4 fact, it sounds like flats or houses that's the property that cannot be
6 MS. BIBLES: Under current circumstances, that's correct. And it
7 appears that my questions on this may have confused the issue and I
8 apologise for that. I'll actually move on to a different area.
9 Q. Sir, you've described that Serbs left -- there was some Serbs who
10 left the municipality of Foca. Would you agree that Muslims also left
11 the municipality of Foca?
12 A. Yes. In the early days, both went away.
13 Q. Sir, and you would agree that in May and June of 1992, and past
14 then, there were Muslims who were held in different locations in Foca
15 municipality against their will?
16 A. It is quite possible - I'm not denying that - but can you please
17 be more specific? Can you draw my attention to something, let's say,
18 fields, meadows or any other localities, I'd like to be asked about that.
19 Q. Certainly. First let's talk about KP Dom which you referred to
20 in paragraph 20 of your statement. In fact, in paragraph 20, you talk
21 about the -- and I believe the quote is "the KP Dom incident."
22 Can you tell us what you mean by "incident" just briefly?
23 A. Can you please show me this paragraph in order to avoid any
24 confusion? If you are referring to these first days, the 8th or, rather,
25 7th and 8th of April, all detainees were released from the KPZ and they
1 scattered around, climbing a slope and eventually reaching a forest, a
2 thick forest, and that is when they were being pursued. There were
3 various inmates there and they were coming from various ethnic
4 backgrounds. After that --
5 Q. Sir --
6 A. Please go ahead.
7 Q. Your statement is currently on the screen and you lead off that
8 the first line of that sentence, "As for the Foca KP Dom incident," is
9 that what you referring to early in April?
10 A. Yes, yes.
11 Q. All right. You would agree that certainly by the 9th of June,
12 1992 --
13 A. They were released before that, the inmates, those who happened
14 to be there. This refers, however, to the appointment of Mr. Krnojelac
15 as the warden, as it was called at the time, of the KPZ, and I can
16 explain that, if necessary.
17 Q. I'm just trying to understand the context for paragraph 20. When
18 you refer to "incident," you're referring to 7th or 8th April, 1992; is
19 that correct?
20 A. And their release, yes, you're absolutely right.
21 Q. All right. But, sir, would you agree that Muslims were held in
22 KP Dom against their will in May and June of 1992 as well? And ...
23 A. I cannot say decisively when was it that the Muslims left the
24 KP Dom because the separation line on the 14th, if I'm not wrong, when
25 Krnojelac was appointed warden, the separation line ran near the health
1 centre which is far away from the KP Dom.
2 JUDGE ORIE: I'm stopping you again, Witness. The question
3 simply was whether Muslims were held in KP Dom against their will in May
4 and June 1992.
5 Were they, were they not?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They were brought in, I suppose,
7 against their will. I think that investigations were conducted in those
8 months whether they had weapons or whether they were involved in any
9 procurement of weapons, and so on.
10 JUDGE ORIE: You were not asked about that. Carefully listen to
11 Ms. Bibles' next question.
12 MS. BIBLES: Could we have 65 ter 31399 on our screens.
13 Q. Sir, this is a 9 June 1992 request from the temporary warden of
14 KP Dom to the War Presidency of Foca.
15 First, you will see that it reflects that a week prior to this
16 request, the same request had been made to the Foca Crisis Staff. If you
17 look in the second paragraph we read that the request advises that "470
18 prisoners were captured during war operations" --
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is "persons".
20 MS. BIBLES:
21 Q. Yes, persons. "470 persons captured during war operations and 10
22 persons of Serbian nationality are at the Foca penal and correctional
23 institution. There are also eight convicted persons who had been serving
24 sentences in before. In addition, in the past month and a half, around
25 550 captured persons have passed through this institution."
1 So would you agree that these -- sir, wait.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Could you please listen to the question first.
3 MS. BIBLES:
4 Q. Based on the fact that Serbian individuals are named separately,
5 that these numbers refer to non-Serbs?
6 A. It is possible, but I wasn't following this situation. I wasn't
7 in charge of these affairs except to comply with requests for food or
8 hygiene products to be supplied. I'm not familiar with this document. I
9 see that there's some weaponry mentioned for security purposes. I don't
10 know about it.
11 Q. We do see that there's a request to lay mines along the fence for
12 part of KP Dom. And I was going ask if you knew whether these were
14 A. If they made such a request, they probably got it from the army
15 and probably was on the way to the forest where they were released --
16 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, do you know anything about it, or are you
17 just guessing about what may have happened?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I absolutely never saw this paper
19 and, quite simply, it's new to me. I don't know. I never went to the
20 KP Dom because there was no need for me to do that.
21 JUDGE ORIE: And you do not know anything about the mines,
22 whether they were provided or not, and whether minefields were laid?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is quite possible but I cannot
24 claim that it is true with any certainty.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
1 MS. BIBLES:
2 Q. Sir, then -- is it your position -- is it your position that
3 during the war time KP Dom was a military prison?
4 A. Only at the beginning did it serve for the purposes of
5 interrogating the detainees. After that, it was transferred under the
6 jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice, as it belonged to it before,
7 because normally Ministry of Justice is in charge of correctional and
8 penal facilities. And I'm talking about the government of
9 Republika Srpska.
10 Q. I'll ask if we could go to the last page of this document,
12 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness be a bit more clear about, he said
13 started under the Ministry of Justice; they ended under the Ministry of
15 Who was responsible in between?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Apparently the domestic structures.
17 Now, believe me, I have to think carefully about this in order not to
18 make any mistake. It could have only been the local military structure,
19 whether at the TO level when these people were taken in for
20 questioning --
21 JUDGE ORIE: What could have been the case is different from: Do
22 you know who was in charge.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You mean in the prison or ...
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, was it --
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The person in charge of the prison
1 was Mr. Krnojelac, who was a mathematics teacher and reserve first class
3 JUDGE ORIE: Was it under control of the military, or was it not?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was appointed on behalf of the
5 civilian authorities in order to preserve the property that was within
6 the compound of the KP such as farm facilities, et cetera, because he was
7 a conscientious person.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Was the military in any way involved in
9 guarding prisoners or in the prison administration?
10 If you know, tell us; if you don't know, tell us as well.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What I know is that -- that there
12 were guards who basically used to work at the KP Dom before the war.
13 That's as much as I know. Whether new ones were added to them but I
14 don't think that they came from the military. I believe that the guards
15 who worked at the KP Dom before the war continued to work there.
16 JUDGE ORIE: What you think and what you believe, we're not
17 interested in. What you know we're interested in. And the fact that
18 guards served before the war in KP Dom were still there doesn't mean in
19 any way that others, such as the military, were not there.
20 Just for you to know that your answer does not really answer my
22 Ms. Bibles.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I have one follow-up question.
24 Who was the superior of Mr. Krnojelac? To whom did he report?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was supposed to submit reports
1 to the Ministry of Justice. Therefore, I think that it was Mr. Mandic,
2 if I'm not mistaken. Minister Mandic. The minister of justice.
3 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You believe that. Thank you. And an additional
5 On page 48, lines 20 to 22, you were asked: "Is it your position
6 that during the war time, KP Dom was a military prison?"
7 Your answer was: "Only at the beginning did it serve for the
8 purposes of interrogating the detainees," which was not a proper answer
9 to that question. But then you continue: "After that, it was
10 transferred under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Justice."
11 What do you mean by "after that"? What time-period are you
12 referring to?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, in view of the system of
14 communications, I cannot say exactly which period was covered by the
15 Ministry of Justice. They were placed under their jurisdiction, but I
16 cannot give you any specific time-frame because I'm not sure.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And before, it was placed under the jurisdiction
18 of the Ministry of Justice, it was under -- or under whose jurisdiction?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Of the Territorial Defence or units
20 of the Serbian army or the operational staff, as it was initially called,
21 until regular units were set up on the 28th of June, which is
22 St. Vitus Day, of 1992.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
24 Ms. Bibles.
25 JUDGE ORIE: I have one very short question.
1 You told us that you were a member of the Crisis Staff. Were you
2 ever a member of the War Commission?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Frankly speaking, the
4 War Commission, I think, appeared in 1995, during the bombing of Foca.
5 Before that --
6 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, first of all, I didn't ask you that. But
7 if you look at the document we previously had on our screen which was a
8 document dated the 18th of June, it is addressed to the operate staff of
9 the Executive Committee of the Serbian municipality of Foca but it
10 originates from the Serbian municipality of Foca War Commission. So
11 that's 1992 and not 1995.
12 Were you, in 1992, ever a member of the War Commission?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. The commissioner was
14 Mr. Maksimovic at the time, whereas, I operated at the level of the
15 Executive Committee. We did meet, that is true, but I wasn't a member of
16 the commissioner's office.
17 I apologise. I thought that you were referring to the
18 Presidency. That's why I mentioned the year 1995 when the Presidency was
19 set up.
20 JUDGE ORIE: No, I was not.
21 MS. BIBLES: Your Honours, I do note the clock.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, perhaps it's the appropriate time to take a
24 Could the witness be escorted out of the courtroom.
25 [The witness stands down]
1 JUDGE ORIE: We will resume at 25 minutes past 12.00.
2 --- Recess taken at 12.08 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 12.30 p.m.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Ms. Bibles, we were -- we have intervened quite a
5 bit. Could you give us an indication as to how much time you will still
7 MS. BIBLES: Yes, Your Honour. I will finish in the first half
8 of this session. We have advised the Defence to be prepared for the next
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for that information.
11 MS. BIBLES: And, Your Honours, while we have a minute here, I
12 would tender 31399 which is the document on our screen.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
14 THE REGISTRAR: Document 31399 receives number P6837,
15 Your Honours.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
17 [The witness takes the stand]
18 MS. BIBLES:
19 Q. Sir, just to briefly close the last area of testimony. Is it
20 correct that you never went to KP Dom during the war?
21 A. No.
22 Q. I should have been clearer. If I understand your questions [sic]
23 prior to the break, do you know much about what happened at KP Dom during
24 the war?
25 A. In statements of different witnesses, I saw that there had been
1 torture and probably mistreatment of individuals. Perhaps they were
2 beaten with truncheons, et cetera. But could I not understand that
3 baseball bats existed in Foca because that is virtually impossible,
4 really. I mean, well, all the rest --
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: To clarify, have you -- did you go to KP Dom
6 during the war.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
8 MS. BIBLES: Thank you, Your Honour.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes --
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Did you go to the KP Dom during the war?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not go --
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- but at the request made, I did
14 provide food and also products for hygiene.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: This was not the question. You did not go to the
16 KP Dom. Thank you.
17 MS. BIBLES:
18 Q. Sir I'd like to shift topics.
19 If we could have D576 on our screens, please.
20 Sir, this is a surrender of weapons agreement with the Muslims in
21 the village of Trosanj. Were you involved in the negotiations with that
23 A. Yes. And another one too, but this one as well.
24 Q. Do you recognise your signature on the document on the screen?
25 A. Certainly. Certainly.
1 Q. And this is your only evidence of personal knowledge with respect
2 to this village; is that correct?
3 A. I talked to people. There were three of them there, in the
4 presence of the territorial commander of the Serb army, and we agreed on
5 what we agreed upon, as you can see from these conclusions, positions,
6 whatever you wish. You can ask me further questions.
7 I also talked to the village of Jelec; the representatives, that
9 Q. Did you sign a similar document with them?
10 A. I think so, but I haven't kept it. I think it's only logical
11 that I signed that one too, if I signed this one. The essence would
12 basically be the same.
13 Q. You've described that the commander -- the territorial commander
14 of the Serb army was present. Can you tell us who that was?
15 A. No, not territorial. Local unit. Well, let's say, was it a
16 battalion or something like that?
17 Q. And perhaps I can correct this. At --
18 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We do not hear the
20 MS. BIBLES:
21 Q. Sir, you were in the transcript quoted as saying: "I talked to
22 people. There were three of them there, in the presence of the
23 territorial commander of the Serb army, and we agreed on what we agreed
25 Who were you talking about as the commander?
1 A. Yes. I think his last name is Vukovic, if I'm not mistaken.
2 After all, there is this distance involved, but I think it's Vukovic. I
3 think his last name is Vukovic. He just attended, and he brought people
4 there to talk. This happened in my office.
5 Q. Could that have been Zoran Vukovic?
6 A. I don't know, believe me. In that hierarchy of theirs there are
7 quite a few of Vukovics. I mean, it's a very frequent surname, Vukovic.
8 Q. Did you have any more personal interaction with the villagers
9 from Trosanj after you signed this agreement?
10 A. No. Please, I kindly ask you to focus on this ... in one of
11 these points, I say --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Witness. Witness --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Please go ahead.
14 JUDGE ORIE: You're not to suggest what Ms. Bibles should focus
15 at. Please answer the questions.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise.
17 MS. BIBLES:
18 Q. If I understand correctly, your answer to the question --
19 A. I did not contact. I did not contact --
20 Q. All right. Thank you. We'll move on now.
21 You've repeated several times in your testimony and what's in
22 paragraph 18 of your statement regarding Serbs leaving Foca at the
23 beginning of the war. So I'd like to review something with you from
25 If we can have 65 ter 2370, please. If we could go to page 24 in
1 the English and page 17 in the original.
2 Sir, this is a transcript from the 26th Assembly Session of the
3 Republika Srpska which was held on the 2nd of April, 1993. We're going
4 to a statement or a speech made by Petko Cancar.
5 And, sir, the section for you that I would first like to look at
6 begins -- it's at the beginning of the last paragraph, I believe, in the
7 original language.
8 And I believe we may need to go to the next page in the English
9 yes, and halfway down the page in the English section where he states:
10 "Fellow delegates" --
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You should direct the witness to the B/C/S
12 portion that seems to be the third paragraph.
13 MS. BIBLES:
14 Q. Should be the beginning of that third paragraph, sir. Do you see
15 it there, "fellow delegates".
16 A. Yes. "Gentlemen, members of parliament," if that's it. This is
17 Cancar's address.
18 MS. BIBLES: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 Q. He states: "Fellow delegates, how can I explain this to myself,
20 and especially convince Serbs in Foca that Foca can be green, when the
21 whole territory of Foca municipality," and I won't go into the areas "the
22 largest municipality in the former Bosnia and Herzegovina, and every part
23 of it is in the hands of Serbs."
24 And then at the bottom of this paragraph, I believe in both
25 versions, we'll be looking at the section that begins: "This message
1 obliges ..."
2 Have you found that in the original text, sir?
3 A. Just a moment. I'm trying. I've read it to the end here.
4 Q. All right. At the bottom of this page, he finishes his statement
5 by saying: "This message obliges both this high body and me as their
6 representative from Foca, and I will behave in accordance to their
7 wishes, because there is only one people living on the territory of Foca,
8 and there is only one religion practiced there ..."
9 And I'll finish the quote there.
10 Sir, by April of 1993, is it true that there was only one people
11 living in Foca?
12 A. I don't think that that is true. But in terms of a majority,
13 yes. In terms of a majority, yes. But it's not absolutely correct.
14 There were mixed marriages and let's not go into all that now.
15 As far as I'm concerned, it's fine, but ...
16 Q. Sir --
17 A. But this is his statement.
18 Q. Sir, isn't it true -- is it true that the change in the ethnic
19 composition of the municipality was so dramatic that the name of the town
20 of Foca was changed to reflect the new ethnic composition?
21 A. This was an unnecessary and unprincipled action because everyone
22 knew --
23 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, no one asked you to comment. First
24 question is: Whether --
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Okay --
1 JUDGE ORIE: -- the composition of the municipality, the ethnic
2 composition was so dramatic that the name of the municipality was changed
3 to reflect that.
4 Was it?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think that that was the
6 reason. I can give an explanation.
7 MS. BIBLES:
8 Q. Was --
9 JUDGE ORIE: Let's wait whether Ms. Bibles asks you for an
11 MS. BIBLES:
12 Q. Was the name of Foca town changed to a new name.
13 A. I understood that.
14 Q. That was not my question --
15 A. I don't think that that was the main reason.
16 Q. What is the new name?
17 A. Oh yes, yes, it was changed, yes. The name was Srbinje.
18 Q. And what does that mean?
19 A. That means that those who proposed that -- let my say straight
20 away that I was against that for other reasons to have it rhyme you see,
21 Trebinje --
22 JUDGE ORIE: No one asked you whether you were in favour or
23 against. You were asked what Srbinje means. That's the question, what
24 Srbinje means.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's a noun, a name for the town
1 that would correspond to Trebinje, then Ljubinje, then Srbinje. That
2 would be it. That would be the analogy. Nothing else. I don't think
3 that anybody thought about the people.
4 JUDGE ORIE: It has got nothing to do with Serbdom. It's like
5 Trebinje and like Ljubinje. It's got nothing to do with Serbdom?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the very name, that part has
7 been inserted. That is true. It is part of the word, yes.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. That was -- the meaning of the word was the
9 only thing you were asked for.
10 Ms. Bibles.
11 MS. BIBLES:
12 Q. And, sir, I'd last like to go to -- if we could pull -- go to
13 P355, page 66 in the English and in the original.
14 Sir, what you're about to see on the screen is a notebook entry
15 from Ratko Mladic. This is a recording in that notebook that he made in
16 Foca at a meeting on September -- 17 September 1992.
17 Now, sir, we see that Miroslav Stanic is reflected to be the head
18 of the War Presidency. And if we look down where there's a little symbol
19 of -- kind of a star next to it or an asterisk, we see the notation --
20 let's see. I'm sorry, the second one: "Foca was supposed to be the
21 second Islamic centre for Muslims" --
22 JUDGE ORIE: No -- no speaking. No -- no conversations at a
23 volume which is audible for others.
24 Could you please resume, Ms. Bibles.
25 MS. BIBLES: Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. "Foca was supposed to be the second Islamic centre for Muslims in
3 "The population of Foca before the war was 42.000, of which
4 number around 51 per cent were Muslims, and 49 per cent Serbs and
6 "Now the percentage of Serbs in Foca is 99 per cent."
7 Now, sir, it's true that Foca became a Serb municipality; is that
9 A. It would seem that way on the basis of these figures. It wasn't
10 42; it was 41.513 but that doesn't really mean much in the terms of this
12 Now, what else? Miroslav Stanic. That is his view.
13 Q. Sir --
14 A. 51, 49, it would roughly be around that. Yes, please go ahead.
15 Q. The question was whether Foca municipality became a Serb
17 A. The figures show that, yes. According to Mr. Stanic's comment.
18 MS. BIBLES: Your Honours, I have to further questions for this
20 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Ms. Bibles.
21 One question. You are referring to Mr. Stanic's comment. Do you
22 challenge that, at that point in time, the percentage of Serbs in Foca
23 was 99 per cent?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It doesn't change anything if it's
25 a percentage point up or down, but that would be it, roughly. I mean, 1
1 percentage point up or down, it doesn't mean much in this counting. That
2 would be it.
3 JUDGE ORIE: So it had become predominantly Serb?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At that time, yes. Today that is
5 no longer the case.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, any questions in re-examination?
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] A few, Your Honour, with your
9 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
10 Re-examination by Mr. Stojanovic:
11 Q. [Interpretation] Sir, Mr. Mladjenovic, you were asked about talks
12 with the delegation of the village of Trosanj.
13 This is what I'm interested in: Could you tell the Court whether
14 during these talks there was any mention of disarming the residents of
15 the village of Trosanj and the surrounding area, irrespective of people's
16 ethnic affiliation?
17 A. Correct.
18 Q. What were the conclusions in relation to disarmament?
19 A. These papers show that all Muslims and Serbs were asked to
20 disarm. Also, they were supposed to be given certificates for the
21 weapons that they had and, when the conditions are right, these weapons
22 would be returned. I received information after a few days that the
23 agreement had been violated, that they started concealing weapons in the
24 trash and so on and so forth under somebody's influence. Because these
25 people told me many truths. Well, I don't think that this Court would be
1 interested in all of that.
2 But it was true. It was true.
3 Q. Let me just stop you for a moment here.
4 And could we look at D576 once again in e-court.
5 In a moment, you will have this agreement before you.
6 In paragraph 1, there is a reference to the hand-over of weapons
7 of all Muslims.
8 And in paragraph 2, the hand-over of weapons of all Serbs.
9 And there is this additional point: Those who are not engaged in
10 military formations?
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... thank you.
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I shall slow down. Thank you,
13 Your Honour.
14 Q. This is what I would be interested in having you tell the Court.
15 This part of the sentence and this part of the conclusion about
16 the hand-over of weapons of Serbs who are not engaged in military
18 A. Well, these are rural households. Middle-aged persons. And this
19 pertains to all people who possess weapons, personally or perhaps who had
20 been issued with weapons. You see? The reserve force of the
21 Territorial Defence, Serbs and Muslims had long-barrelled weapons
22 distributed to them and also the police on both sides. They had weapons
23 issued to them from the police stations. So it has to do with everybody.
24 And, of course, these papers, these certificates, would be issued so that
25 all weapons could be returned to both once the conditions are right.
1 I hope that I'm clear now.
2 Q. At the moment when you were reaching this agreement, was there
3 any information to the effect that in the village of Trosanj there were
4 persons who were not registered residents of that village?
5 A. That can be assumed on the basis of everything that followed but,
6 of course, I had no idea and I made no such assumption. Later on, when
7 they gave up or, I don't know, when they started putting this away, then
8 I mean, really, from the leader of that unit I heard about that. I also
9 talked to Jelec quite a bit.
10 Q. All right.
11 A. With Mr. Ljubo Ninkovic along parallel lines. He was their
12 neighbour and he was an influential man in Sarajevo. However, the
13 essence is that Major Besevic ruined this agreement, as a matter of fact,
14 weapons were to be collected, and this did start and he came in a
15 helicopter and he ruined everything. He was a major, I think.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Stojanovic, please let me clarify one matter.
17 Mr. Mladjenovic, you said so it -- the disarming of people, it
18 has to do with everybody.
19 According to this, can you explain the difference in the wording
20 between paragraph 1 and paragraph 2? Why is it written differently?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] To tell you quite frankly, I and
22 these people made no objections. I mean, quite simply, we decided that
23 it would pertain to both peoples, both communities, and perhaps it was
24 just reinforced, highlighted, that both should be disarmed. That is my
25 understanding of it and I think that that was what we meant, in essence.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Can you explain the difference. In paragraph 1
2 the Muslims had to hand over legal and illegal weapons. In paragraph 2,
3 the Serbs had to surrender their weapons, if they were not engaged in
4 military formations.
5 This is slightly different. Why?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That is correct that it's
7 different. As a matter of fact, I assume that even Muslims I mean, some
8 of them, were in military formations. Then also the Serbs probably were
9 in some military formations. However those who were not, then this
10 pertained to them. To both. And both, if they were formations -- but to
11 what degree, I don't know. I mean, I don't know how many participated.
12 On both sides.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You signed this agreement. Why didn't you write
14 it in a --
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: [Previous translation continues] ... way
17 pertaining to both peoples.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I understood that it pertains
19 equally to both peoples. It could have been phrased in a sentence, in
20 one sentence.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: But I take it --
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] People signed it --
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I take it it was not.
24 And, Mr. Stojanovic, please continue.
25 JUDGE ORIE: I have another question in relation to the same.
1 What was the authority of the civilian authorities of the Serb
2 municipality of Foca which was unilaterally proclaimed by Serbs, if I
3 understand you well, to receive weapons from the Muslims? Why would not
4 the Serbs have to hand over their weapons to the -- to the Bosniak or
5 Muslim authorities of Foca?
6 What was the basis for this authority?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Let me tell you this.
8 Location-wise, in the early days of war, and you can see that this was
9 happening on the 24th of April, which means that war was well advanced,
10 and people tried to save what was saveable. Jelec, Trosanj, all these
11 areas are rural areas. However, the civilian authorities had the task in
12 that period and there were quite a few Muslims there then, was to first
13 and foremost to preserve peace and then protect property from all kinds
14 of revenge, which is characteristic of the people from the Balkans to
15 seek revenge whenever someone got killed. And also to preserve energy
16 because we had a chronic shortage of electricity for many years. That
17 was the first investment that was made in Republika Srpska. So there was
18 a vast array of actions to recommend the protection of property belonging
19 to both communities, to seal all the flats, et cetera. However, when it
20 comings to torching, that's a different story, but I am open to any
22 JUDGE ORIE: It's not a real answer to my question but I try to
23 rephrase it again.
24 What was it that the Serb authorities could impose these rules on
25 predominantly Muslim villages? What was their authority to do that?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was not an imposition. It was a
2 rather an intention to preserve and protect the local inhabitants.
3 Because all -- both the town and village leaders had fled. That's the
4 point. And you can find this in various documents originating from the
5 Muslim side, not from me. Believe me, they all fled. Nobody expelled
6 them, and then the people kept leaving, of course.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic.
8 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
9 Q. Can you tell us, if you remember, in 1992, what was the area code
10 number for Foca?
11 A. The area code number for Foca I think was 071. Believe, I'm not
12 quite -- postal area code was 71330. As far as the telephone area code
13 is concerned, believe me, I don't remember.
14 Q. Very well. I'm not going to ask you any further questions about
15 this because I wanted to show you a document anyway.
16 What I want to ask you now is: To your recollection, with regard
17 to the first days of war in Foca, that is to say, after the 8th of April,
18 1992, who exerted physical and actual control over the KP Dom in Foca?
19 A. Which date?
20 Q. 8th of April, 1992.
21 A. Definitely Muslim units because Donje Polje was at least
22 80 per cent populated by Muslims which is from the second
23 Cehotina Bridge, from the blue sky-scraper to the hospital, but I would
24 say seven or eight days. Maybe if you give me time to think about it, I
25 can put it more correctly.
1 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we now have in
2 e-court P985. P985.
3 Q. Let's look at paragraph 2. This is a document dating from 1998,
4 sent by the warden, Zoran Sekulovic of the Ministry of Justice in which
5 he informs the Ministry of Justice that until 18th of April, 1992, the
6 Green Berets were at the KP Dom in Foca and as of the 18th of April,
7 1992, the mopping-up and cleaning -- and clearing of the facility started
8 and the collection of the strewn documents.
9 In that respect, the ministry introduced work obligation at the
10 KP Dom, starting from 20th of April, 1992.
11 Does this document refresh your memory with regard to these
12 affairs? And would you agree with this position expressed by
13 Zoran Sekulovic concerning the time lines when the Muslim forces were in
14 charge of the KP Dom, physically and militarily?
15 A. Obviously I was close but I didn't dare to say because I'm not
16 sure. That was the second warden of the KP Dom after the dismissal of
17 Mr. Krnojelac who went to work as a principal of the school and what
18 happened later everybody knows.
19 Probably this option is feasible but I didn't want to make any
20 conjectures because I wasn't quite sure.
21 Q. One more question regarding this document.
22 The experience and the knowledge that you acquired and which you
23 explained to the Prosecutor during the cross-examination with regard to
24 the release of all inmates from the KP Dom Foca, did it take place prior
25 to the 18th of April, 1992?
1 A. You mean the pre-war composition?
2 Q. I'll rephrase my question. The convicts who were incarcerated in
3 KP Dom Foca, did they leave, did they escape, were they released from the
4 KP Dom before 18th of April, 1992?
5 A. Even before the 8th, because the pursuit continued on the 5th or
6 6th. Some of them were caught and then they went in circles to Pus
7 [phoen], but I don't want to tire you. But they were released.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Could I inquire with the parties what is the dispute
9 that is covered by your questions? Is it part of the Prosecution's case
10 that up till the 8th April there was not a mixed population of detainees?
11 I gained the impression that the Prosecution's case is about the
12 detention of Muslims and non-Serbs after that period of time, once Serbs
13 had taken control. So what's the relevance of what happened before? And
14 who escaped or did not escape? It seems not to be part of this case,
15 Mr. Stojanovic.
16 The witness, again and again, referred to it. Not asked about it
17 but ...
18 Could you tell us what is the dispute between you and Ms. Bibles
19 in this respect?
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] That's what I think, but
21 Ms. Bibles and I can clarify this issue. Because in one of the previous
22 testimonies in this courtroom, a question was raised as to who was the
23 one who released the convicts from the prison in Foca. If that is not in
24 dispute, then -- and if we agree that the Muslim authorities were in
25 charge of KP Foca, I have no need to put this question.
1 MS. BIBLES: Your Honour, my only question to the witness
2 regarding -- or the direction for KP Dom was that he mentions an incident
3 in his statement. I simply wanted to determine whether that was relevant
4 to the indictment. It wasn't. And so I moved on.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
6 Mr. Stojanovic, perhaps it is advisable to respond to the
7 Prosecution's case rather than to respond to the unsolicited remarks made
8 by the witness.
9 Please proceed.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Does that mean, Your Honours,
11 that we don't have to dovetail this issue with the Prosecution? If that
12 is not deemed to be relevant, I'm ready to accept it.
13 Q. Mr. Mladjenovic, I'm going to finish with one more question. You
14 were showing a document relating to the appointment of individuals as --
15 or the individual as the director on the Official Gazette of
16 Republika Srpska. The question is: The Crisis Staff of the local
17 authorities has any authority with regard to the procedure of appointing
18 a director of a public institution, such as the Official Gazette of
19 Republika Srpska?
20 A. Let me tell you straight away, it's news to me that they appealed
21 to the Crisis Staff. However, the practice was if he started working on
22 the 19th of April, 1992, the Executive Committee had to receive all the
23 nominations for candidates, and then the ministry had to be involved and
24 the Executive Committee had to give its approval.
25 JUDGE ORIE: I'm again interrupting.
1 The question was to allow this person to move out from Foca. It
2 doesn't say anything about any authority to appoint, so it's beside the
3 point raised by the Prosecution. I must say that it wasn't entirely
4 clear what then was the relevance the Prosecution found in this document
5 because the simple thing was: Would you allow him to leave and come to
6 Pale. Nothing about the appointments. Only the reason why they wanted
7 him to leave.
8 So, therefore, questions about authority are not triggered by the
9 cross-examination. Apart from that, totally irrelevant.
10 Please proceed.
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, with this, I
12 conclude re-direct examination of the witness.
13 Q. I am grateful to Mr. Mladjenovic on behalf of the Defence team of
14 General Mladic.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
16 Have the questions by the Defence triggered any need for further
17 questions, Ms. Bibles.
18 MS. BIBLES: No, Your Honour.
19 [Trial Chamber confers]
20 JUDGE ORIE: Since the Bench also has no questions for you,
21 Mr. Mladjenovic, this concludes your testimony in this court. I'd like
22 to thank you very much for coming a long way to The Hague and for having
23 answered, sometimes even a bit more, than that the questions that were
24 put to you by the parties and by the Bench, and I wish you a safe return
25 home again.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Orie, if you can just indulge
2 me by giving me 20 seconds I would like do greet everyone in the
3 courtroom, to wish them --
4 JUDGE ORIE: There's no need do that.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I'm not referring to anyone
7 JUDGE ORIE: Well, I think none of anyone sitting here is waiting
8 for you to greet them. If you want to greet anyone, you can do it once
9 you've left this courtroom in the way which you consider the most
10 appropriate way.
11 You may now follow the usher.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
13 [The witness withdrew]
14 JUDGE ORIE: Is the ...
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 Mr. Stojanovic, wouldn't it be better to take the break now and
17 then to call the next witness after the break so that you have time until
18 quarter past or at least not to quarter past until five past and we would
19 then start with the cross-examination.
20 I see from the body language of Mr. Mladic that he agreed to take
21 the break a bit earlier.
22 We'll take a break and resume at 25 minutes to 2.00.
23 --- Recess taken at 1.17 p.m.
24 --- On resuming at 1.37 p.m.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Is the Defence ready to call its next witness?
1 Mr. Stojanovic.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, our next witness
3 is Tomislav Savkic. And we explained the reasons why we are not calling
4 Witness Lelek at this point.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. The Chamber has received that information and
6 fully accepts the steps taken and the change in the order of appearance
7 of these witnesses.
8 Ms. Bibles.
9 MS. BIBLES: Your Honour, perhaps I could try to clean up
10 something from the last witness and that is I had intended to tender
11 Petko Cancar's speech at the assembly, which we reviewed. I would simply
12 tender pages 124 and 25 of 65 ter 2370.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Isn't it true that you read all of what you wanted
14 to draw -- but perhaps you read only a selection of lines --
15 MS. BIBLES: Yes --
16 JUDGE ORIE: -- from the totality of his speech. One second.
17 Mr. Stojanovic, would you have any objections against this
18 selection being tendered?
19 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Have you uploaded the selected portions and --
21 separately. Yes. And the number -- separately I see Ms. Stewart is
22 concerned whether --
23 MS. BIBLES: It will be 2370A.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but it has not been uploaded yet.
25 MS. BIBLES: It has not been uploaded.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Okay, then, it'll be uploaded under that number:
2 2370A. Madam Registrar, could you already reserve a number for that.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Document 2370A once uploaded receives number
4 P6838, Your Honours.
5 JUDGE ORIE: That number is reserved until the uploading is
7 [The witness entered court]
8 JUDGE ORIE: Good afternoon, Mr. Savkic. Before you give
9 evidence, the Rules require that you make a solemn declaration, the text
10 of which is now handed out to you. I'd like to invite you to make that
11 solemn declaration.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
13 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 WITNESS: TOMISLAV SAVKIC
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Savkic. Please be seated.
17 Mr. Savkic, you will first be examined by Mr. Stojanovic. You
18 will find him to your left. Mr. Stojanovic is counsel for Mr. Mladic.
19 Please proceed, Mr. Stojanovic.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
21 Examination by Mr. Stojanovic:
22 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Savkic.
23 A. Good afternoon.
24 Q. For the record, could you please slowly tell us your full name.
25 A. Tomislav Savkic.
1 Q. Thank you. Mr. Savkic, have you given a statement to the Defence
2 team of General Mladic, specifically to me, and provided answers to the
3 questions that I sent you in writing?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we now call up
7 65 ter document 1D01771.
8 Q. Mr. Savkic, in front of you, you can see the cover page of the
9 statement. I'm asking you if this is your signature?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Thank you. Can we please now look at the last page of this
13 Mr. Savkic, the signature and the date entered on this page, is
14 that your handwriting?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Thank you. Would you be so kind to tell us during proofing for
17 your appearance, you indicated to me yesterday and last night that
18 certain amendments or corrections need to be made in your statement.
19 A. Yes, I did.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, let us look at
21 paragraph 29 of the witness's statement.
22 Q. In the sentence which reads: "A proposal was made to establish a
23 working group consisting of six most distinguished representatives of
24 Serbs and Muslims," did you tell me that what is missing here is six
25 distinguished representatives of Serbs and Muslims each?
1 A. Yes, that can be seen in the protocol that there were six
2 representatives from each side.
3 Q. Now, for that reason, for the clarity of record, let us say that
4 this sentence now should read as follows: "A proposal was made to
5 establish a working group consisting of six most distinguished
6 representatives of Serbs and Muslims each ..."
7 Now, is this consistent with what you told us?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Thank you. Let us now look at paragraph 50 of your statement.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just for the sake
11 of precision, in B/C/S because the English version is correct.
12 Q. The place name in B/C/S it says Pioke, whereas you say the
13 correct name is Pijuke, is that correct?
14 A. Yes, it is.
15 Q. Thank you. After we have made these two corrections and after
16 you have made a solemn declaration to speak the truth, the whole truth,
17 and nothing but the truth, if I were to put the same questions to you,
18 would you provide the same answers as the ones contained in your
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think that this
23 is a good time to tender this witness's statement, 65 ter 1D01771, into
25 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
1 THE REGISTRAR: Document 1D1771 receives number D699,
2 Your Honours.
3 JUDGE ORIE: D699 is admitted.
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, at this point
5 along with this statement, I would suggest that four documents mentioned
6 in this statement be also admitted in evidence, which have 65 ter number
7 1D02321, 1D02322, 1D03094, and 1D03095.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Traldi.
9 MR. TRALDI: Yes, Mr. President. We would object only to one.
10 1D03094, which is a statement by another person, as we indicated in our
11 response to the 92 ter motion.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, what's the reason why we have to
13 receive that document which is a statement by another witness?
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the reason that
15 guided us to move to include this statement is relevant for this case and
16 it pertains primarily to the status and position of the person who made
17 the statement, as well as the contents of his statement in which he
18 described the same events that this witness is going to testify to, and
19 these events were, indeed, covered by the indictment.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now these are not the criteria for admission
21 as an associated exhibit, Mr. Stojanovic, isn't it? It should be
22 indispensable and we should be unable to understand the testimony of this
23 witness without that -- without that associated exhibit.
24 What is there then -- I suggest that we -- that you perhaps deal
25 with the matter as suggested by the Prosecution, that you elicit evidence
1 from the witness in relation to matters related to the same matters this
2 statement of Mr. Sulejmanovic deals with and we deal with whether they
3 are indispensable and necessary to understand the ...
4 [Trial Chamber confers]
5 JUDGE ORIE: This statement is given to whom exactly,
6 Mr. Stojanovic?
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] This statement was given to the
8 public security station in Milici on the 31st of May, 1993, to the
9 witness who appeared in this case some ten days ago.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Which means that it is not directly subject to
11 Rule 92 bis or ter.
12 Mr. Traldi, you were on your feet.
13 MR. TRALDI: I agree with that. However we don't see any reason
14 to believe this witness has a basis for knowledge considering this was a
15 person who had been taken prisoner by Serb forces during the war. We
16 don't see any assurances that this was taken in a manner free from
17 coercion and consequently -- and beyond that we don't find it integral
18 and indispensable to this statement. So our submission isn't that it
19 would be required to be 92 bis or ter itself, our submission is that it
20 does not satisfy the test for admission.
21 JUDGE ORIE: 92 bis or 92 ter is usually used for statements
22 taken for the purposes of this tribunal and that's a practice that the
23 Prosecution has applied continuously. It was objected to by the Defence
24 who, by the way did exactly the same, and then -- so therefore for the
25 time being, there are no objections to three of them. We'll deal with
1 them. We'll see how your examination-in-chief develops in relation to
2 this -- the events which are covered by this statement by
3 Mr. Sulejmanovic, as well -- at least as far as we were told at this
4 moment because we have not looked into it.
5 Madam Registrar, 1D02321 would receive number ...?
6 THE REGISTRAR: Number D700, Your Honours.
7 JUDGE ORIE: D700 is admitted.
8 1D02322 would receive number ....
9 The REGISTRAR: D701. Your Honours.
10 JUDGE ORIE: D701 is admitted.
11 1D03095 would receive number ...?
12 THE REGISTRAR: D702, Your Honours.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence. We'll further wait for the
14 developments in relation to paragraph 42 and the other document you
15 intended to have admitted as an associated exhibit, Mr. Stojanovic.
16 You may proceed.
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] With your leave, Your Honour, I
18 would like to read the summary of today's witness's statement.
19 Witness Tomislav Savkic has a degree in electrical engineering
20 and during 1992 he was appointed commander of the Defence of the
21 Milici Boksit mine. From the 1st of November, 1992, he took over as
22 commander of the 1st Infantry Battalion Milici and from 1st of
23 November 1993 he was elected president of the Municipal Assembly of
24 Milici and he remained in that position until the end of the war. He
25 testifies about interethnic problems in the area of Vlasenica after the
1 breakup of Yugoslavia, about the constitution of authorities in the
2 municipality of Vlasenica, about disputes concerning the division of
3 departments, and having authority over the municipality. He was familiar
4 with the arming of the Muslims, the obstruction of mobilisation by the
5 political leadership of the Muslims, as well as the deterioration in the
6 security situation because of a series of incidents initiated by Muslims
7 already from the second half of 1991.
8 The political leaderships of the ruling parties tried to have a
9 territorial separation in a peaceful way and to have new municipalities
10 constituted. Along those lines, on the 13th of April, 1992, the
11 Municipal Assembly of Vlasenica, through a conclusion of its own, adopted
12 the agreement on the territorial separation and constitution of new
13 municipalities but after they received information to the effect that
14 Muslims were preparing an all-out attack against Vlasenica, the units of
15 the JNA and a company of the TO from Sekovici entered town without any
17 Muslims left Vlasenica in three stages, starting from mid-1991,
18 and especially after the 21st of April, 1992, when Serb refugees started
19 arriving in Vlasenica from different municipalities that were under the
20 control of the Muslim authorities.
21 Parallel to this process, Muslim paramilitary formations carried
22 out several sabotage operations, and Serb civilians and employees of the
23 Boksit mine were the victims. The witness speaks about his knowledge on
24 the establishment of the Susica centre, and the clashes around the
25 villages of Drum, Pijuke, Gradina and Zaklopaca and the fighting that
1 took place between the VRS and the Army of Bosnia-Herzegovina before the
2 safe areas of Srebrenica and Zepa are declared.
3 Finally, he speaks about his knowledge concerning armed struggle
4 of the Milici brigade and the other parts of the armed forces of the RS
5 with the column of the 28th Division of the BH army, the information that
6 he received from different sources on the number of casualties in the
7 column of the 28th Division of the BH army along the route of their
8 movement and breakthrough. And, finally, the information that he was
9 given in 1998 by the representative of the International Committee of the
10 Red Cross that 2.600 entire bodies or body parts of participants in the
11 column were found and collected.
12 That would be the summary of this witness's statement,
13 Your Honours, and with your leave, I'd like to put a few questions to
15 JUDGE ORIE: Please do so.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. Savkic, could we now please take a look at D699 together, and
18 could you please focus on paragraph 30 where you speak about this
19 agreement, about the territorial separation in the municipality of
20 Vlasenica and the constitution of new municipalities.
21 In view of what you referred to in paragraph 29 of your
22 statement, could you tell the Court whether you were one of the
23 participants in these talks?
24 A. Yes. I am under number 4. In Serbian, the page in Serbian.
25 Q. Could you tell the Court whether these talks between the Serb and
1 Muslim people in Vlasenica resulted in some specific agreement on the
2 peaceful resolution of the problems that had accumulated?
3 A. Yes.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, you are referring to number 4. Number 4 of
5 what? You have apparently paperwork before you which you're supposed not
6 to have. If there's any document you'd like to consult, you should ask
7 permission for that. That's one.
8 And, Mr. Stojanovic, you seemed to easily accept that answer so
9 apparently you know what the witness is talking about. Or aren't you?
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Quite frankly, I don't know,
11 Your Honours. I can just assume what this is about, and I thought --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, the witness says: Yes, I'm under
13 number 4, in Serbian, the page in Serbian. And then you move on. And
14 you do not know what the witness is referring to. It is not only your
15 questions that are important but the answers are important to be
16 understood as well.
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have no problem
18 with asking that, asking what this is about.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Well, you should have done that before I did.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: Okay.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Paragraph 4 of what, Witness? Number 4.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's not a paragraph. I was
23 precise. I said that in the signature, I am under number 4. As for the
24 representatives of the Serb people --
25 JUDGE ORIE: What document are you talking about? That's unclear
1 to us. We do not know what document you are referring to.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm speaking about the document
3 from this paragraph. That is the protocol of the agreement on the
4 separation in the municipality of Vlasenica. It is written here.
5 JUDGE ORIE: That's clear now. But we haven't seen that
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have this
8 intention and I have notified my colleagues of the Prosecution, I intend
9 to use this document and then, probably, it would have become clearer.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I wonder if the witness has a different document
11 in front of him on the screen than we and the parties.
12 Are you referring to a document on the screen in front of you or
13 a different document?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The lawyer, Mr. Stojanovic told me
15 nicely to focus on paragraph 30, and paragraph 30 starts as follows:
16 "This agreement ..."
17 Well, that was the lawyer's question.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Let me try to cut matters short. I do understand
19 that paragraph 30 refers to a document, a document which is not before
20 the Chamber but a document of which you apparently have a copy before
22 Now, Mr. Stojanovic, the proper way of dealing with it is to show
23 the document to the Chamber as well, because whatever you agree with --
24 about with the Prosecution, the Chamber still has a role to play in this
25 courtroom as well.
1 So try to get matters organised so that the evidence comes to us.
2 MR. TRALDI: Just to have the record be completely clear, we had
3 understood that he intended to use the agreement, as Mr. Stojanovic has
4 stated. We hadn't understood or agreed to the Defence having physical
5 copies of documents we haven't seen with him and we'd just request
6 eventually to be provided with a copy of the documents that the witness
7 has with him.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Now, Mr. Stojanovic, get organised and proceed.
9 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Agreed, Your Honour. In order
10 to be quite clear, could we now have document 65 ter 02894 in e-court,
12 Q. Mr. Savkic, this document that you see before you now, is that
13 the document that you've been speaking about in your statement, in
14 paragraph 30?
15 A. Yes.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please look at the last
17 page of this document in B/C/S and in English.
18 Q. Let me ask you whether my assumptions were correct when you
19 mentioned that you were the fourth signatory of this document.
20 A. Yes, as far as the representatives of the Serb people are
22 JUDGE ORIE: In order to avoid whatever confusion in English,
23 it's not the last page of the document, it's the semi-last page. It's
24 page 6 out of seven. But having corrected this, please proceed.
25 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Under number 4, the name, Tomo Savkic, does it correspond to your
2 name, Tomislav Savkic, and is that your signature?
3 A. Yes, yes, that's my signature. It can be seen here. And we
4 Serbs otherwise when people have longer names, then they are shortened,
5 like elsewhere in the world, too. So instead of Tomislav, it says Tomo.
6 Q. Thank you. Were you also present at the Municipal Assembly of
7 Vlasenica when the question of the possibility of adopting this agreement
8 was discussed?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. What was the objective of such a signed agreement between the
11 representatives of the Serb and Muslim peoples in Vlasenica?
12 A. It is best stated in paragraph 8 of this agreement. It is
13 precisely on this page where the signatures are. So it's page 7.
14 However, it's black from what I see here, but I have the original right
15 in front of me.
16 Q. In order to be quite clear, it is page 6 in the English version.
17 And I would like to ask you to tell us in your own words what the
18 ultimate objective of this agreement was.
19 A. The ultimate objective of this agreement was as follows: The
20 situation that then prevailed in the municipality of Vlasenica was
21 supposed to be dealt with as follows. The administration should fully
22 function or, rather, self-administration or self-government. Because the
23 then-leadership of the municipality, already from the month of July 1991,
24 was not in a position to carry out its basic functions. As a matter of
25 fact, all of them, all 21 of them, from the lowest-ranking official to
1 the president of the Executive Council, they had to carry pistols or
2 revolvers, and we said here quite clearly we are doing this on the best
3 possible basis for the people, in terms of the functioning of the
4 government and administration, and that can be seen from this paragraph.
5 Q. Thank you. At the session of the assembly that was held on the
6 13th of April, 1992, actually, in paragraph 30, you refer to that
7 assembly. Were there any objections there, in view of this protocol?
8 Was it adopted through a conclusion adopted by the assembly?
9 A. Yes, it was adopted through a conclusion adopted by the assembly.
10 I think it is conclusion number 2. However - however - there are four
11 other conclusions that are very important as well. But it was adopted
12 without any alterations.
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have document 65
14 ter 1D03502 in e-court.
15 Q. Mr. Savkic, is this the document that you spoke of in your
16 statement and that you are speaking of today in this courtroom?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. This paragraph, or Article 2 of the conclusions, is that
19 precisely what you were speaking about today in response to my questions?
20 A. Yes. That can be seen from the meaning, I hope that it was
21 translated well into English.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, would like to
24 tender these through documents 65 ter 02894, and 1D03502. Could they
25 please be admitted into evidence.
1 MR. TRALDI: No objections, Mr. President.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Document 2894 receives number D703.
4 And document 1D3502 receives number D704, Your Honours.
5 JUDGE ORIE: D703 and D704 are admitted into evidence.
6 One -- one question. Was there any dispute about what we heard
7 about, that there had been a meeting and agreement and that the agreement
8 was adopted by the municipal assembly? Is there any dispute about those
9 facts? Apart from any circumstances. Because they were not presented to
10 us yet.
11 MR. TRALDI: That the documents reflect what they reflect. And
12 that the agreement was entered into, I don't believe there's a dispute
13 about, Mr. President.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
15 Mr. Stojanovic, why not explore that, rather than to spend time
16 on it in court. Okay. Matters are as they are, sometimes.
17 Any further questions, Mr. Stojanovic, and how much time would
18 you still need or was this your examination-in-chief?
19 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I haven't finished, Your Honour.
20 I have two more questions and two more documents to deal with.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Well, think it over, overnight if these are
22 matters in dispute, yes or no. If need be, contact Mr. Traldi on the
23 matter, and we'll then continue tomorrow.
24 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. If there's no
25 dispute, we will accept that with pleasure.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Well, you're duty-bound to do that, I would say, not
2 to spend time in court on matters which are not in dispute.
3 Mr. Savkic, we'll adjourn for the day. We'd like to see you back
4 tomorrow morning at 9.30 in this same courtroom. Meanwhile, I want to
5 instruct you that you should not speak with anyone, or communicate with
6 whomever, about your testimony, whether that is testimony you have given
7 today or whether that is testimony we expect you to give tomorrow.
8 If that's clear to you, you may follow the usher.
9 Mr. Traldi.
10 MR. TRALDI: Yes, Mr. President. And I think I was a little bit
11 imprecise before requesting that we eventually be provided a copy of
12 those documents.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
14 MR. TRALDI: We'd like to have it before tomorrow morning.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could we -- could the witness come back for a
16 second - I apologise - and put on his earphones again.
17 You are in the possession and you consulted -- you are in the
18 possession and you consulted documents. Where do they come from?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are my personal documents.
20 These are originals of these documents, these documents, that we talked
21 about today. That is to say that agreement, then this decision of the
22 municipal assembly and so on.
23 I had bad experience in this court. I had forgeries planted on
24 me by the Prosecution at the trial of Momo Krajisnik. So just in case, I
25 took along the originals.
1 JUDGE ORIE: One second, please.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE ORIE: Do I understand that, until now, you've only
4 referred to this protocol and you've only consulted the protocol which
5 you were asked about?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then you should make up your mind: Either
8 leave them in your hotel room tomorrow, or if you want to bring them,
9 that's fine. But then you should give an opportunity to the Prosecution
10 to look at them and they'll certainly be very careful with it.
11 Mr. Stojanovic would then perhaps have a look at it as well, and they
12 will be returned to you by the Victims and Witness Section before you
13 enter court or perhaps even later this afternoon.
14 So it's up to you whether you want to have them with you
15 tomorrow, in which case you are invited to hand them over so that they
16 can be inspected, or to say, I don't need them any further.
17 And Mr. Traldi, I take it that you'll accept the witness's answer
18 that -- I mean, if he doesn't use them, then, of course, everyone can
19 have whatever documents he wished to have.
20 MR. TRALDI: Yes, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So could you tell us whether you want to have
22 them available for you for consultation tomorrow? If that's the case,
23 please hand them over temporarily to the usher.
24 [Trial Chamber confers]
25 JUDGE ORIE: And could you -- and apart from that, you should
1 already show the one document you have used today, so you should give
2 that original for inspection - you'll get it back - for inspection to the
3 Prosecution. And if you want to use the other ones tomorrow as well, you
4 should give the whole bundle to the Prosecution.
5 Yes --
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When's he bringing them back to me?
7 JUDGE ORIE: Well, I take it, Mr. Traldi, that it will not take
8 long for you to inspect them, copies can be made, and you'd be within
9 half an hour, one hour. And then, of course, the Defence also should
10 have an opportunity to inspect them.
11 MR. TRALDI: Yes, I think that's reasonable, Mr. President.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Which means that it could be returned by
13 approximately 4.00; Mr. Stojanovic, I'm also looking at you.
14 You're to receive them back later this afternoon. Is that okay?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All right. Four documents.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Four documents. Do you have any other documents?
17 You should leave them at home if you -- if you want to use them,
18 if you want to consult them tomorrow, then you should give them now. If
19 not, then, of course, take them and leave them in your hotel room. It's
20 up to you.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Six. Six documents.
22 JUDGE ORIE: And the others, you will leave in your hotel room
23 tomorrow. Is that understood?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, understood.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then you'll -- these six documents will be
1 returned to you later today. Later this afternoon.
2 Apologies for asking to you come back again. My instructions
3 still apply.
4 [The witness stands down]
5 JUDGE ORIE: I take it that the parties will, without any delay,
6 inspect the documents and take care that, with the assistance of the
7 Registry, that they will be returned to the witness.
8 We adjourn for the day, and we resume tomorrow, Wednesday, the
9 22nd of October, in this same courtroom, I, at 9.30 in the morning.
10 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.23 p.m.,
11 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 22nd day
12 of October, 2014, at 9.30 a.m.