1 Thursday, 8 December 2005
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Good morning. Could I remind you of the
7 affirmation you made at the beginning of your evidence, which still
9 Mr. Bulatovic.
10 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good
11 morning to all.
12 WITNESS: WITNESS P-032 [Resumed]
13 [Witness answered through interpreter]
14 Cross-examined by Mr. Bulatovic:
15 Q. Good morning to the witness. My name is Bulatovic. I am
16 co-counsel for Mr. Sljivancanin. I will be asking you several questions.
17 All the cautions that you were reminded of yesterday still apply. So All
18 the cautions that you were reminded of yesterday still apply, so that we
19 may continue our work as expeditiously as possible.
20 You said that on the 17th of November you went to the cellar where
21 your parents were and that your father told you that Vukovar had fallen.
22 And that he had been told this by a police officer. Is my understanding
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. When you were with your father, were you there alone or were you
1 there with perhaps another member of the ZNG from your unit?
2 A. I was on my own.
3 Q. How long did you stay there?
4 A. For an hour.
5 Q. During the time you spent with your parents and your father, did
6 you perhaps talk to him about anything else in addition to the fact that
7 Vukovar had fallen? What I have in mind specifically is, did you talk to
8 him about what he would do? If so, please describe the conversation for
10 A. We agreed that should Vukovar fall, we would be meeting up in
11 Zagreb; and that's all we talked about.
12 Q. Did you ask him how he planned to escape from Vukovar?
13 A. I asked him what would become of them, and he said, "Well, the
14 same as everyone else."
15 Q. When he said "the same as everyone else," what precisely did he
16 have in mind? Who was everyone else?
17 A. The remaining civilians from the cellar.
18 Q. When you had this conversation with your father, you talked for
19 about an hour, were any of these other civilians present there? Did they
20 have any suggestions to make? Did they say anything? If so, what?
21 A. No.
22 Q. So you had no information from the people in the shelter,
23 including your father, indicating how they were planning to escape from
25 A. No.
1 Q. You spoke about some weapons yesterday that you had left behind in
2 a friend's house. I want to know: What were those weapons? You talked
3 about a rifle. What sort of rifle? That's what I want to know.
4 A. There was an M-48 and an automatic one.
5 Q. Do you know the calibre of this M-48 and the automatic one,
7 A. The automatic one is 7.62-millimetres, and I'm not sure about the
9 Q. You mentioned a PAP rifle while answering?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Was that M-48 a PAP rifle, a semi-automatic rifle?
12 A. No.
13 Q. Did you have any semi-automatic rifles?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. You said there were eight of you in that group, if I understood
16 correctly what you said yesterday?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Can you please tell me what sort of weapons those people had.
19 A. There were four M-48 rifles, three semi-automatic rifles, and one
20 automatic rifle.
21 Q. Can you tell me how much ammunition you had for each of these
23 A. I don't know.
24 Q. Did your weapons include hand-grenades?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Would you tell me how many of those you had, if you remember.
2 A. I don't.
3 Q. Since you had semi-automatic rifles, did you also have tromblons?
4 A. No.
5 Q. How far was your flat from school, where you were?
6 A. Between 50 and 100 metres.
7 Q. By the 18th of November, 1991, how often had you gone back to your
8 flat, I mean from the time that you joined the ZNG on?
9 A. Twice a week.
10 Q. The cellar in which your parents were staying, is that the same
11 cellar that belongs to your building in which your flat was, too?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Can you tell me what the reason was for you going back to your
14 flat twice if your parents were there, and perhaps they could see if
15 everything was all right.
16 A. I went there to see them.
17 Q. I think my question was clear: How many times did you go back to
18 your flat. As far as I understand your parents were in the cellar. If
19 your parents were in the cellar, why would you need to go back to your
20 flat since they were there to do it for you?
21 A. Nobody went back to the flats just to check if everything was all
22 right. Everybody was in the cellars.
23 Q. Did you have a TV set, a radio in your flat?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. In the school where your unit was positioned, what about there,
1 did you have a TV set or a radio?
2 A. No.
3 Q. Did you at any time during your time and involvement with the ZNG
4 have an opportunity to watch TV or follow the radio programme?
5 A. Yes, for as long as there was electricity. When there was a power
6 cut, we were no longer able to follow anything at all.
7 Q. Can you specify the time-line. Until which point in time was it
8 possible to watch TV, and when it start to be impossible? When was the
9 power cut?
10 A. I don't know.
11 Q. Let's go back to the moment when you dropped your weapons and you
12 headed for the hospital with that friend. In your statement to the OTP
13 you stated his full name. Given the protective measures that are in
14 place, I will avoid mentioning this person's name, but I will ask you a
15 different thing. This person, your neighbour, was he with you throughout?
16 And I mean from the moment in time you left the weapons behind in the
17 neighbour's house to the your departure for Mitrovica.
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Were you taken to Mitrovica together also?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Were you released from Mitrovica together?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Did you meet while in Mitrovica?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Did you talk?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. I'm going to ask you about the details of your arrest on the 18th
3 [as interpreted] of November, 1991.
4 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation] Correction, please. Page 6, line
5 2 it says "the 18th," and I said "the 19th," the 19th of November.
6 Q. Can we consider the 19th to be the day of your arrest, because you
7 said you were arrested on that date, didn't you?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. You said that you were stopped by a vehicle with four soldiers in
10 it. Can you first of all please explain what sort of a vehicle was that?
11 A. It was a green Jeep.
12 Q. There were four soldiers in this vehicle; right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. You said the Jeep disgorged a person that you were later to
15 recognise. I will ask you about that later on. You recognised that
16 person as Veselin Sljivancanin. Can you please describe the Veselin
17 Sljivancanin that you saw. Uniform, weapons, the whole works, everything
18 about the way you perceived or saw that person.
19 A. When the Jeep pulled over, the door opened and this gentleman
20 asked us where we were headed. My neighbour and I said, We are going to
21 the hospital. He told us to get on and that he would drive us there.
22 Once we reached the hospital and got off the Jeep, the gentleman told the
23 soldiers manning the gate --
24 Q. I'm sorry, but that wasn't my question. I asked you to describe
25 this man that you saw.
1 A. He had a camouflage uniform. He was tall and sported a moustache,
2 and he had a Tito cap with a red star on his head.
3 Q. Did he have any weapons; and if so, what sort?
4 A. I saw no weapons on him.
5 Q. Where was his rank displayed?
6 A. I don't know.
7 Q. Did you see this same man in that photograph that you saw in the
8 newspapers, the one you told us about?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Did you see this same person on TV, too, the person fitting that
12 A. After I was released from the camp, yes.
13 Q. In view of your activities and involvement with the ZNG, as far as
14 I understand, based on your answers today you were relatively well-armed.
15 Can you please describe your combat operations your combat activities.
16 How did you carry those out? Where? What were the groups? Who devised
17 the plans? Who was in command?
18 A. We didn't do anything where I was.
19 Q. As far as I understand, throughout the war, throughout the armed
20 conflict in Vukovar, you did not fire a single bullet, did you?
21 A. I did.
22 Q. Who at?
23 A. The APCs.
24 Q. Whose?
25 A. The military ones.
1 Q. You were firing at military APCs, that is some sort of armed
2 operation or armed action. What I want to know is how this came about.
3 Why did you start firing? Who was in command? Who gave you orders?
4 A. Nobody gave us orders. When the APCs set out, they were the first
5 to start firing.
6 Q. I won't be asking you any further questions about that; this is
7 crystal clear. There is something else, though, that I want to know
8 about. You arrived with the soldiers on the 19th. They met you in the
9 street. They gave you a ride in this Jeep all the way to the hospital.
10 How long were you there?
11 A. About 10 or 15 minutes.
12 Q. You conducted a conversation with soldiers there, that is based on
13 your statement to the OTP, and you found out that these soldiers were from
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. These soldiers offered you cigarettes, didn't they? You said so
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Can I take it - I think you'll probably agree - that your
20 conversation, your neighbour's conversation, with those soldiers was
21 friendly to a fault, wasn't it?
22 A. You should ask my neighbour.
23 Q. But you were there, weren't you?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. So you witnessed the conversation, but all right. In a way I
1 understand your hostility. Let me ask you something else. Did the army
2 ask for any information from you? They gave you cigarettes, they talked
3 to you, so how did you reach the point where you started discussing
4 weapons? Was that topic first started by your friend or by you or by
6 A. The soldiers asked us.
7 Q. What did they ask you, and who in fact asked you?
8 A. Those who put us on the APC to take us to Velepromet.
9 Q. What did they ask you, and how did they ask you?
10 A. They asked us whether we had had any weapons. The neighbour said
11 we did. They asked: Where? And then we told them where. And then we
12 went to that location and surrendered our weapons.
13 Q. And what did the army people tell you after you had surrendered
14 your weapons? Did they ask you where you were from, what were you doing
15 in your locations, where were your positions?
16 A. They didn't ask us anything.
17 Q. Did they beat you there when you surrendered your weapons, when
18 you took them to the spot where you had left your weapons? Did they
19 mistreat you in any way?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Will you please tell me what time it was on the 19th of November
22 1991 when you were brought to Velepromet.
23 A. About 6.30 a.m.
24 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have to repeat my
25 question because I think there is a problem with the transcript. The
1 answer and the question got all mixed up, so I will repeat my question to
2 clarify this.
3 Q. What time was it when you were brought to Velepromet?
4 A. 6.30 a.m.
5 Q. How did they take you there?
6 A. In an APC.
7 Q. When you arrived in Velepromet, how many other civilians were
8 there in the yard of Velepromet?
9 A. A lot.
10 Q. Could you be more specific. What is a lot, in your assessment?
11 A. I don't remember. I had to have my hands on my back and put my
12 head down, so I wasn't able to look around.
13 Q. I'm only interested in what you were able to see. So please tell
14 us, given what you were able to see, how many civilians were there there?
15 A. I don't know.
16 Q. You said just a minute ago that there were a lot of them, so you
17 were able to see that there were a lot of people. I'm interested in
18 defining what "a lot" means for you. Is it over 100? Over 1.000? Can
19 you give us some kind of a reference?
20 A. As I told you, I wasn't able to look around, so I could only see
21 what I was able to see.
22 Q. That's precisely what I am interested in. What were you able to
23 see? How many people were you able to see?
24 A. I don't know.
25 Q. You mean you don't know the exact number? Is that what you're
1 saying? I'm not interested in the exact number; I'm just interested in
2 defining a bit closer what "a lot" means.
3 A. I don't know.
4 Q. Can I ask you something? You said that you had weapons and
5 ammunition. How much ammunition did you have to go with your rifles, a
6 lot or a little?
7 A. Whatever we were able to carry, that's all we had.
8 Q. And how much was that?
9 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters didn't understand what the
10 witness said.
11 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Would you please repeat your answer. The interpreters did not
13 understand what you said when I asked you how much ammunition did you
15 A. About 500 bullets.
16 Q. These 500 bullets, where did you keep them? Was it in your combat
17 set or was it in a some kind of a clip that you carried? What was it?
18 A. We had no clips.
19 Q. All right. So you were all issued with 500 bullets?
20 A. No.
21 Q. All right. Well, how many bullets did you have, each of you?
22 A. Whatever we were able to carry with us.
23 Q. I keep asking you: How much were you able to carry with you and
24 what did it depend on?
25 A. Whatever I had I surrendered.
1 Q. Do you remember how much you surrendered?
2 A. About 500 bullets.
3 Q. All right. Let us turn back to Velepromet. You said that first
4 you stayed in one room and were later moved to another room. Is that
5 right? Is that right?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Tell me, please, the distance between the two rooms and also where
8 these two rooms were positioned, the first one and then the second one.
9 A. As soon as we left the first room we entered the second room. It
10 was maybe 5, 10, or 15 metres away, in the same building.
11 Q. Can you describe the size of the second room?
12 A. No.
13 Q. Let me ask you this: In the same that you gave to the OTP
14 investigators in 1995, in relation to the time when you were transported
15 from the hospital to Velepromet, you said that Mr. Sljivancanin had told
16 you that he would transfer you in his van to the hospital. Today you
17 mentioned no van whatsoever. Would you please tell us: What was it?
18 A. I don't understand your question.
19 Q. In the statement you gave to the OTP, you said that
20 Mr. Sljivancanin -- this is how you identified him, as the man who asked
21 you where you were going. You said that he told you that he would
22 transport you to the hospital in a van. Today you told us that the
23 soldiers who stopped you were in a Jeep, a Jeep and a van are two very
24 different things. Could you please explain this.
25 A. We were transported to the hospital in a Jeep. Later on they took
1 us to Velepromet in an APC.
2 Q. You told us here that you were questioned, as I understood
3 yesterday, by the representatives of the Serb Territorial Defence. And
4 you said that there were 20 other people listening to you there. I would
5 like to learn more about the method of this questioning. Were you
6 questioned one by one, one after the other? Did you sign -- did you write
7 some statements there? Did you sign perhaps any typed statements? I'm
8 just interested in learning more about this procedure which took place in
10 A. There were 20 of us who went out and went to this other room. The
11 gentleman who introduced himself as a military policeman, upon recognising
12 me, took me aside. He asked me about the types of weapons I had, how many
13 Serb children I had killed, how many necklaces I had made out of fingers
14 and ears. We didn't write any statements and we didn't sign anything.
15 Q. Was this taking place in the room where all of you were, or did
16 this man take you outside, where you were able to talk alone?
17 A. All of us were in the room.
18 Q. As this man was taking to you, the others were listening. Is that
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. You say that the man questioning you recognised you. How was he
22 able to recognise you? Was he a local resident of Vukovar, or how did he
23 know you?
24 A. He was a resident of Vukovar, and we knew each other from fishing.
25 Q. On the 19th in Velepromet, do you remember how many buses you saw
2 A. I don't remember.
3 Q. All right. Tell me, please, you spoke about how there were
4 initially 60 of you and then 38 remained. Can you give us the names of
5 some people you remember out of those 38 who were with you. If you think
6 that it could in any way reveal your identity, then we can go into private
8 A. Slobodan Vuletic; Emil Cakalic; Djoko Vladisavljevic, Djordje. I
9 can't remember the others.
10 Q. From that moment on after this questioning in Velepromet and until
11 the information you questioning you had in February in Sremska Mitrovica
12 in 1992, did anybody else talk to you in the meantime?
13 A. I wrote a statement on the 20th of January, 1992.
14 Q. I apologise. I misspoke. I said "February" and I meant January.
15 So from the 19th of November, 1991, until late January 1992, did anybody
16 else speak to you?
17 A. Nobody spoke to me until the 20th of January, 1992.
18 Q. Yesterday you said that in Sremska Mitrovica you received no
19 information, no newspapers, no TV, no radio. So it was an information
20 blackout. Did I understand you well?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. In your statement to the OTP, you talk about the way in which you
23 recognised Veselin Sljivancanin. You say that you saw his photograph in
24 some military magazine. In the context of what you have just told us, the
25 fact that you had no printed media there to use or to read, how on earth
1 does this magazine suddenly appear, just out of the blue, in Sremska
3 A. We didn't get anything until the Geneva Conventions arrived.
4 Q. You mean the International Red Cross arrived, if I understand you
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. How many days before your release was that, before you were
8 allowed to go back to Croatia before you were exchanged?
9 A. December, the 12th [as interpreted] of December.
10 Q. Do you remember about December 1991? Did you speak to any
11 representatives of the International Red Cross in Sremska Mitrovica?
12 A. No.
13 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I believe there is
14 something on page 15, line 11. It says "December, the 12th of December."
15 I don't think the witness was speaking about the 12th of December. I
16 think he was speaking about the 12th month of the year.
17 Q. Except for your contact with the International Red Cross in
18 Sremska Mitrovica in December 1991, was there any other time that you were
19 contacted by them?
20 A. All the inmates had contacts with them, but no personal contact.
21 Q. When you say "all the inmates," what do you mean? What sort of
22 contact did they have? I did not mean a personal acquaintance. I meant
23 were you in contact officially?
24 A. They came to our room. They brought us books, magazines, and
25 asked if there was anything else we needed.
1 Q. In addition to this conversation, no other conversation ever took
2 place, did it?
3 A. We sent messages to our families in Croatia.
4 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we go back into
5 private session briefly, please?
6 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
7 [Private session]
11 Page 3037 redacted. Private session.
10 [Open session]
11 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honour.
12 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Let me ask you about the names of certain people. Please tell me
14 if they ring a bell. If so, what do you know about those people. The
15 first name is Ivo Madzarevic?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Branko Krizmanic?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Filip Karaula?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Marin Pliso?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Ivica Arbanas?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Ante Roso?
1 A. No.
2 Q. I will ask you about your return from Sremska Mitrovica.
3 Following your return from Sremska Mitrovica, did you have any further
4 contacts with the International Red Cross, first of all in Mitrovica
5 immediately before your release or later, following your release, or when
6 you arrived in Zagreb or wherever else?
7 A. Yes, in Mitrovica when we were about to be exchanged. In Zagreb I
8 had no further contacts with these people.
9 Q. At your exchange when you had these contacts with them, did you
10 have to fill in a form, an exchange form, an official document that they
11 gave you, to record some information for their sake? How long you spent
12 in detention, where and when you were arrested, what the conditions were
13 in detention, and so on and so forth.
14 A. No.
15 Q. So you never filled in any sort of form or questionnaire, none of
16 the International Red Cross people ever took any statements from you
17 concerning the time you spent in detention, did they?
18 A. We just wrote messages, but I can't remember that we ever wrote
19 anything else.
20 Q. Were there any rights that you acquired on the strength of the
21 fact that you had been detained in Mitrovica?
22 A. Can you please repeat that question.
23 Q. Were you entitled to any sort of compensation or any special
24 rights or privileges just because you had been detained in Mitrovica?
25 A. No.
1 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we please go
2 into private session.
3 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
4 [Private session]
19 [Open session]
20 MR. AGHA: Your Honour, may we ask that the document in full be
21 put in in due course because this would only seem to be these two pages,
22 apart of the list of people detained at Sremska Mitrovica prison.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Is there a relevance the in the case of the full
25 MR. AGHA: Well, it may also contain evidence of people who gave
1 evidence here, that they were also detained in Sremska Mitrovica.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Is it a document that is in full in the electronic
4 MR. AGHA: That I'll have to find out for you, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Well, when you found out you can raise it again.
6 At the moment we'll receive into evidence these two pages.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, this will be exhibit 133 under seal.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much.
9 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. If I told you that official documents of the Government of Croatia
11 indicate that you were arrested on the 18th of November, 1991, and that
12 both of your brothers were arrested on the same day and that on the 20th
13 of November your friend and neighbour was arrested, what would you say to
15 A. I don't understand your question. What do you mean, arrested on
16 the 18th of November?
17 Q. You said that you were arrested on the 19th, and I'm telling you
18 that the official documents of the Government of Croatia indicate that it
19 wasn't on the 19th but rather on the 18th, which means that on the 19th
20 you were not in the hospital, as you have told us here. Is that true or
22 A. No. I was in the hospital on the 19th.
23 Q. Thank you?
24 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have concluded my
1 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Bulatovic.
2 Yes, Mr. Agha.
3 Re-examined by Mr. Agha:
4 Q. Witness, when you're ready I have a number of questions which I'd
5 like to clarify -- for you to clarify which the learned Defence counsel
6 have asked you.
7 Now, during your cross-examination you were asked during your
8 guard duty at the building what it meant in practical terms, and you side
9 that you were to see whether any APCs or military people were starting to
10 arrive from the direction of the barracks. You also said later that the
11 barracks was not under siege. So what was going on in the barracks during
12 this period of time, if you were able to keep an eye on it?
13 A. I was unable to see because the barracks is at an elevation, on a
14 hill, and it is I don't know how far from my building. However, the
15 commander had told us if I saw them coming down I should inform him.
16 Q. What sort did the barracks, if you're aware, play in the conflict?
17 A. I don't know. I can't remember any longer.
18 Q. Now, turning to another area of the questions which the learned
19 Defence counsel asked you, you were asked during cross-examination which
20 particular ZNG unit was stationed at the palace of Count Eltz and you said
21 you did not know. Do you know if any ZNG unit at all was based in the
22 palace of Count Eltz in the months of July and August?
23 A. I don't know.
24 Q. Now, recently, this morning, in cross-examination the learned
25 Defence counsel asked you about when you went to visit your parents, and
1 you said that you were able to watch TV and radio at their house. What
2 did you hear on the radio or TV about the hospital, if anything?
3 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
4 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Borovic.
5 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, but I have to intervene
6 finally. I didn't manage to intervene when the question pertained to the
7 barracks. This witness said that he went to the basement; he didn't go to
8 the apartment to watch television or anything like that. He didn't say
9 this, and I believe this question is extremely leading.
10 JUDGE PARKER: I don't think leading is the issue, Mr. Borovic,
11 because he's trying to remind the witness of evidence. But your reminder,
12 it seems to me have misunderstood the evidence.
13 I don't think what you said there was the evidence at all,
14 Mr. Agha.
15 MR. AGHA: My understanding, Your Honour, and I will have to check
16 the transcript --
17 JUDGE PARKER: Well, before you go through your understanding,
18 what we're more interested in is the witness's. It might be better if
19 neither of us discussed what we think the evidence was but you learn from
20 the witness what his understanding of the truth is.
21 MR. AGHA:
22 Q. Witness, in cross-examination were you asked this morning whether
23 you went to your parents' house to -- and were able to see the TV and
24 listen to the radio?
25 MR. BULATOVIC: Objection.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
2 MR. BULATOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I cross-examined
3 this witness, and I did not put such a question to the witness. You can
4 verify this in transcript. All I did is ask the witness whether he went
5 to his apartment and whether he had a TV and a radio sets in his
6 apartment. I didn't ask him whether he watched or listened to TV or radio
7 in his apartment. I only asked him whether there was a TV set or a radio
8 set at the school and whether they watched and listened there.
9 JUDGE PARKER: That roughly accords with my recollection,
10 Mr. Bulatovic. Now we've exposed it all.
11 I suggest, Mr. Agha, if you want to follow it up, you might ask
12 the witness where it was, if in any place, that he watched TV or heard
14 MR. AGHA:
15 Q. So for clarification, Witness, did you have the opportunity at all
16 to hear the TV or radio?
17 A. Listen to the radio, yes, but watch TV, no.
18 Q. So did you hear anything on the radio about the hospital? Was
19 there any discussion about that?
20 A. We heard from Dr. Bosanac that the hospital had been shelled.
21 Q. And did you hear anything on the radio regarding the JNA barracks,
22 what it was up to?
23 A. I don't know. I can't remember any longer.
24 Q. Now, I want to move to --
25 JUDGE PARKER: Before you leave it, the Chamber would be
1 interested to know where he heard the radio.
2 MR. AGHA:
3 Q. Witness, could you please clarify for the Chamber where you heard
4 the radio.
5 A. In the basement where my parents were.
6 Q. And if I now may turn to a different area, and I'll try to start
7 with this morning's cross-examination. Now, this morning the Defence
8 counsel, learned Defence counsel, mentioned that when a green Jeep reached
9 the hospital gates - and you were asked about that, and you said that a
10 gentleman got out and told the soldiers manning the gates - at that point
11 you were cut off. What did the gentleman tell the soldiers who were
12 manning the gates?
13 A. He told them to watch us and that he would send a vehicle to
14 transport us to Velepromet.
15 Q. And who was that gentleman who said he would send the vehicle to
16 Velepromet for you?
17 A. Mr. Sljivancanin.
18 Q. Now, staying on the subject of Mr. Sljivancanin, during
19 cross-examination you indicated that you were able to recognise him from a
20 picture and that there was a blackout in Sremska Mitrovica until 12th
21 December, 1991, when the Red Cross arrived. When, roughly, were you able
22 to see that picture in which you recognised Mr. Sljivancanin?
23 JUDGE PARKER: Can we indicate that our recollection is that the
24 12th was mentioned, but there was some confusion over the translation. We
25 understand it was the 12th month rather than the 12th day. So there may
1 be a misunderstanding in what you're putting to the witness now.
2 MR. AGHA: Okay. Thank you, Your Honours.
3 Q. So just to clarify, when, roughly, did you see the picture of
4 Mr. Sljivancanin?
5 A. Perhaps a few days before the Geneva Conventions arrived.
6 Q. Now, moving to another area during your cross-examination, and
7 that was this morning again, you were asked about the state of your arms
8 and it was suggested that you indicated that you were relatively
9 well-armed. What heavy weaponry did you have?
10 A. In the positions where we were, we had no heavy weapons.
11 Q. Now, I'd like to move to your evidence regarding Velepromet. Now,
12 during cross-examination you indicated that you arrived at Velepromet at
13 6.30 a.m. on the 19th of November. You said that you saw a lot of
14 civilians in the yard, although you could not name the exact number. Why
15 were you not kept in the yard with the other civilians?
16 A. When we arrived at the gate of Velepromet, we were told to put our
17 hands on our backs and bend our heads down. We entered the yard. As soon
18 as we came out, some of the soldiers said: Here are the MUP men. I don't
19 know how come I wasn't with civilians.
20 Q. And as you were not kept in the yard, where did they take the MUP
21 men and you?
22 A. It was just me and my neighbour. They took us to the room that we
23 called the death room.
24 Q. Now, during your entire cross-examination, both yesterday and
25 today, the learned Defence counsel have raised various questions regarding
1 Velepromet. For example, the exit, the entry, the yard, the rooms. Now,
2 do you remember Velepromet? Would you be able to recognise it?
3 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
4 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Vasic.
5 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] The Defence did not object to the
6 previous question, but we believe that this question is leading. The
7 witness yesterday talked about the room where he was kept and where the
8 room was. And this question suggests how the witness should answer. The
9 witness clearly indicated yesterday that he remembered it.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic, the question of what recollection the
11 witness has of Velepromet, I believe, properly arises for re-examination
12 based on a variety of questioning from more than one Defence counsel. He
13 gave descriptions in varying degrees, first of arrival at Velepromet, and
14 then of where he was held, where he was moved to, where he was questioned.
15 And I think those, put together, properly give rise to the question: How
16 much do you remember about Velepromet, tell us? This question is putting
17 that to him; it's not in any way, as I see it, telling him how to answer.
18 It's asking him: You tell us what, if anything, you remember. So I think
19 it's a fair question.
20 Yes, Mr. Agha.
21 MR. AGHA:
22 Q. So can you kindly tell the Chamber of your recollections of
24 A. I remember our arrival, the way we were searched and taken to that
25 room and then to a different room. Then we were taken back and we left
1 for the barracks.
2 Q. Thank you. Now, again I want to stay with Velepromet, and the
3 questions now I am going to ask you relate to the questions which learned
4 Defence counsel asked you yesterday which concerned the statement which
5 you gave to the OTP in 1995. Now, yesterday during cross-examination you
6 looked at your statement and you saw that you had not referred to the room
7 where you were kept as a room of death. You explained that you had
8 nicknamed the room where you were staying as a room of death. In 1995,
9 when you gave your statement, did the investigators ask you whether you
10 had given the room where you were staying a particular nickname?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Now, again turning to your statement, I would like to clarify an
13 issue which is based on that statement which you gave in 1995. Now, you
14 mentioned in that statement that you were maltreated or abused at
15 Velepromet. Now, there seems to be some confusion, based on the
16 cross-examination, whether you were maltreated at all at Velepromet or
17 whether the maltreatment related to whether it was just in the room where
18 you were not maltreated. So could you perhaps, with the assistance of the
19 Chamber, refer to the statement and we can actually see what is written
21 MR. AGHA: And if I may kindly ask the court usher to provide the
22 witness with his statement in B/C/S.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Any particular page or paragraph?
24 MR. AGHA: Yes, Your Honour.
25 Q. In your statement yesterday you were asked to read a part of your
1 statement which started: "There were between 50 and 60 of would you say
2 in that room."
3 JUDGE PARKER: Which page is that?
4 MR. AGHA: That's on page 3 and it's in the bottom part, at least
5 in the English.
6 JUDGE PARKER: I think the witness is turning to page 3. It would
7 help him a lot if he did.
8 MR. AGHA:
9 Q. So if you could kindly turn to page 3 of your statement and find
10 the part where it says: "There were all together 50 or 60 people in that
12 Would you kindly read that part from there.
13 A. "There were all together 50 or 60 people in that room. I was not
14 maltreated, but I saw a man."
15 Q. Now, could you stop there, please, Witness. Now, when you say you
16 were "not maltreated," that refers to, as I understand, you not being
17 maltreated whilst you were in that room. Is that correct?
18 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic.
20 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] This must be a leading question. I
21 think the right way to ask would be: What does this mean? And not to
22 suggest a possible meaning to the witness.
23 JUDGE PARKER: You're quite right, Mr. Vasic.
24 I'm afraid the harm's been done.
25 MR. AGHA: I apologise to the Chamber and to my learned friends.
1 If the witness could kindly answer the question.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was not maltreated for as long as
3 we were there, but when we came back, my hands were tied by a length of
5 MR. AGHA:
6 Q. Now, Witness, if I can ask you to go to the final page of your
7 statement which relates to the portion in which you were outside of the
8 room of death. Could you please read, and I'll tell you when to stop, on
9 the English roughly about four lines from the bottom. And it
10 starts: "This interrogation lasted about 10 minutes."
11 It starts: "This interrogation lasted about 10 minutes. I was
12 sitting in that room and I was not -- I was approached by a man. His
13 nickname was Topola," that part?
14 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic.
15 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have no objection to
16 the witness reading out the relevant portion, but I think it would be
17 proper to read the previous sentence because that previous sentence is
18 important in the general framework of what the witness is testifying about
19 and what the witness testified about his interrogation. And my learned
20 friend seems to have forgotten about that first sentence.
21 MR. AGHA: I have no objection to that first sentence being read
23 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. The Chamber hasn't seen the statement,
24 so we are in your hands.
25 MR. AGHA: I have no objection whatsoever.
1 Q. So perhaps if you could read from the top, almost, of the
2 statement: "He wanted to handcuff me, but he could not find handcuffs."
3 JUDGE PARKER: Can you find that passage in the statement: "He
4 wanted to handcuff me but he couldn't find handcuffs"? Can you find that
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
7 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] May I perhaps give you a hand with
9 JUDGE PARKER: Thanks, Mr. Vasic, but he's found it now. Yes.
10 Would you be able to read that aloud?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "He wanted to handcuff he, but he
12 could not find any handcuffs. And he tied my hands with a length of wire.
13 He did not beat me during the interrogation. The interrogation lasted
14 about 10 minutes. I was sitting in that room when I was approached by a
15 man by the name of Topola from Negoslavci. (I cannot remember anything
16 else about him; that was the first time I saw him.) He gave me a bullet
17 for the pistol and he ordered me to swallow the bullet. Under the
18 circumstances, I had no choice but to do it. He left, but he later
19 returned and gave me another bullet to swallow. He taunted me by saying
20 that I was an Ustasha and made me swallow the other bullet. He hit me
21 several times over the head, but he did not injure me. This was
22 psychological torture. After that, we returned to the room."
23 MR. AGHA:
24 Q. Thank you, Witness, that's sufficient. Now --
25 JUDGE PARKER: And do you want the witness to indicate whether
1 that is his recollection or not today?
2 MR. AGHA:
3 Q. And, Witness, is that your recollection of the events today?
4 A. Yes.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Agha, we're almost at the end of the tape.
6 Will you be long?
7 MR. AGHA: I think possibly about 10 more minutes, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE PARKER: In that case, we'll have to have the break now, I
9 think. Yes. We will resume at 10 minutes past 11.00.
10 --- Recess taken at 10.42 a.m.
11 --- On resuming at 11.14 a.m.
12 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Agha.
13 MR. AGHA: Yes, Your Honour, just before I continue to complete my
14 re-examination, the last exhibit by the learned Defence counsel was
15 Exhibit 133, which dealt with two pages of the entire list. And it was
16 suggested that if I could search the electronic copy.
17 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
18 MR. AGHA: I have done this now and I understood a copy had been
19 provided to the learned Defence counsel in entirety under Rule 68. So for
20 a matter of completeness I wonder if it could be helpful to the Chamber
21 and to future witnesses if the document could actually be exhibited in its
23 JUDGE PARKER: You will tender that in your re-examination,
24 Mr. Agha. It will be received in its entirety.
25 MR. AGHA: Thank you, Your Honour.
1 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
2 JUDGE PARKER: It's not yet in the electronic record it seems,
3 Mr. Agha.
4 MR. AGHA: Not as yet, unfortunately, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Ah, well, you will have to wait or somebody else
6 will have to deal with it later.
7 MR. AGHA: The joys of E-court.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Well, let us hope that by the 23rd of January we
9 can actually mean "the joys of E-court." We'll hope.
10 MR. AGHA: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. Now, Witness, just before we broke for the recess we were looking
12 at your statement which you gave, based on which numerous questions were
13 asked you by the learned Defence counsel. Now, during your
14 cross-examination you were asked about the policeman who was taken out of
15 the room of death, and there seems to be some confusion, I would submit,
16 about what you said in your statement about the manner in which that
17 policeman died. So -- or indeed what happened to him.
18 So if you could please return to the bottom of page 3 of your
19 statement --
20 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour.
21 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic.
22 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I'm afraid the witness never said he
23 saw the police officer die. He talked about indications and sounds, but
24 he never for a moment claimed that he saw the police officer dead.
25 JUDGE PARKER: As usual, you're spot on, Mr. Vasic. Yes.
1 MR. AGHA: And this is the point, Your Honour, I'd like to clarify
2 to what he --
3 JUDGE PARKER: You see the problem with the way you've introduced
5 MR. AGHA: I do, Your Honour. I apologise.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Agha, you're not the only counsel present here
7 who doesn't. I can look to the other side and identify people, but it
8 does happen and it's happening a bit too often for everybody's comfort
9 that the people are jumping to presumptions about the evidence and putting
10 them to witnesses when it is not the evidence. So I would hope all
11 counsel try and discipline themselves about this.
12 MR. AGHA:
13 Q. So, Witness, could you turn to page 3 of your statement and read
14 from the part which is towards the bottom of the statement, and it starts
15 with: "Later, I cannot remember when, he was taken away from the room."
16 A. "Later, I cannot remember when, he was again taken away from the
17 room by JNA soldiers. We heard him scream with pain. After that, he
18 never came back to our room. I did not see them kill him, but on the way
19 out of our room when we were being taken to the JNA barracks, I saw traces
20 of blood on the floor and his body was lying in a room that looked like a
22 Q. Now, Witness, is that your recollection today of what you saw?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Now, turning to another part of your statement, during
25 cross-examination by the learned Defence counsel you were asked why you
1 had not mentioned the statement which you gave in Sremska Mitrovica prison
2 to the OTP in 1995, when you were interviewed. Now, can you please go to
3 the final three lines of your statement and just read those, please, for
4 the benefit of the Chamber?
5 A. "JNA soldiers woke us up at about 8 a.m. and made lists of names,
6 giving us each two packs of cigarettes and some food" --
7 Q. Actually, Witness, if you could skip to the final three lines,
8 that would be sufficient.
9 A. "I spent four and a half months in Sremska Mitrovica and was
10 eventually exchanged on the 27th of March, 1992. If necessary, I can
11 provide a statement concerning my time in the camp. This is everything I
12 can say about the events that I have been asked to describe. End of
14 Q. Now, later on did the OTP request you to give another statement
15 regarding your time in the camp?
16 A. I gave no other statements but this one -- or rather, I don't
17 remember. Perhaps I did, perhaps I didn't.
18 Q. Now, I'd actually like now to turn to that statement which you
19 gave in Sremska Mitrovica prison camp, and you told the Court that your
20 statement was untruthful because if you told them everything they would
21 have abused you more severely. Now, this relates to the statement you
22 gave in Sremska Mitrovica prison. Now, when in 1995 you gave your
23 statement to the OTP, what kind of the abuse did the ICTY investigators
24 subject or threaten you to?
25 A. Can you please repeat that question for me.
1 Q. When you gave your statement in 1995 to the Office of the
2 Prosecution, what kind of threats and abuse did the Office of the
3 Prosecution subject you to?
4 A. There was no abuse whatsoever, but I didn't write anything else in
5 addition to this statement.
6 Q. And is this statement which you gave to the OTP in 1995 truthful?
7 A. No.
8 Q. In what respects is it not truthful?
9 A. Nothing about it was truthful; it was all lies and untruths.
10 Q. Witness, I'm referring to the 1995 statement you gave to the
11 Office of the Prosecutor. Was that truthful?
12 A. What I said back in 1995 is true.
13 MR. AGHA: And this completes my re-examination. I have no
14 further questions for this witness.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, Mr. Agha. I believe the next
16 witness is a protected witness. Is that correct? Yes. The screens could
17 be run down now while I'm speaking.
18 Thank you very much. You'll be pleased to know that that
19 concludes your questioning. The Tribunal is very grateful to you for the
20 assistance that you have given us and for your coming here to The Hague to
21 assist in this case. You'll be pleased to know that you may, of course,
22 now return to your home and whatever else you want to do. So thank you;
23 you may go out now with the court officer.
24 Mr. Agha, just one matter.
25 MR. AGHA: I apologise, Your Honours.
1 [The witness withdrew]
2 JUDGE PARKER: It's a very solemn matter. The Chamber has had it
3 drawn to its attention that we will not see you again.
4 MR. AGHA: I'm afraid that's correct, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE PARKER: May we wish you well in your knew career in Sierra
6 Leone and we hope you find life personally and professionally satisfying
8 MR. AGHA: I would like to thank the Chamber for its kind
9 observations and also the learned Defence counsel for the work we have
10 done together as well as the court officers and the translators. Thank
11 you all.
12 [The witness entered court]
13 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
14 Good morning. Would you please read aloud the affirmation on the
15 card that is shown to you now.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
17 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much. Please sit down.
19 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
20 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Moore.
21 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much indeed.
22 Your Honour, there is one matter -- indeed two matters that I
23 would like to clarify. Could they be done in closed session, if that's
24 possible, please?
25 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
1 MR. MOORE: They relate to this witness --
2 JUDGE PARKER: Do you mean fully closed session?
3 JUDGE PARKER: It's the shutters which is the difference.
4 MR. MOORE: Well, the shutters are unimportant in relation to
5 these points, but as long as the matters I am going to be mentioning are
6 not heard outside.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Private session will achieve that.
8 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much for that.
9 [Private session]
11 Page 3060 redacted. Private session.
11 Page 3061 redacted. Private session.
11 Page 3062 redacted. Private session.
2 [Open session]
3 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
5 For reasons which have been discussed in private session, the most
6 practical course the Chamber is persuaded at this point is not to commence
7 the evidence of the witness who has just been sworn. There is no prospect
8 of completing that witness's evidence in the time available, and because
9 of his health it would be unfair to adjourn partway through his evidence.
10 So the most practical course, unfortunately, is now to adjourn. And
11 hopefully the witness will be well enough to attend when we resume sitting
12 at the commencement of the new year. So for those reasons and in those
13 circumstances, we now adjourn to the new year. May we wish everybody a
14 very appropriate break and seasonal greetings.
15 We now adjourn.
16 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 11.40 a.m.,
17 to be reconvened on Monday, the 23rd day of
18 January, 2006, at 2.15 p.m.