1 Monday, 13 March 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.21 p.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon, sir. Would you please read aloud
7 the affirmation on the card that you have?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly swear that I will speak
9 the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much. Please sit down.
11 WITNESS: EMIL CAKALIC
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Moore.
14 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much, Your Honour. Your Honour, there
15 are one or two administrative matters. I wonder could they be dealt with
16 perhaps at the end of the day; Your Honour would hear us on one or two
17 matters that don't concern this witness but perhaps other factors in
18 relation to timings.
19 JUDGE PARKER: We will try to remember that, Mr. Moore. If you
20 think it is obviously escaping my memory at that point, please remind me.
21 MR. MOORE: I will. Thank you very much.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
23 Examination by Mr. Moore:
24 Q. Witness, what is your full name, please?
25 A. My name is Emil Cakalic.
1 Q. And when were you born, please?
2 A. On the 5th of January, 1934.
3 Q. I'll try and summarise your educational background. Is it right
4 that you attended elementary school and then you attended secondary
5 medical school in Zagreb from 1949 until 1953; is that correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. That you moved to Vukovar in 1958; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And then from 1968 until 1972 you had been studying in Belgrade
10 for two years at the medical school for sanitary engineers. I think you
11 did that at the same time that you worked; is that right?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And then you subsequently were working in the Vukovar Hospital and
14 you were involved, I think, with the community of Vukovar which was, I
15 believe, described as regional government? Is that right or not?
16 A. First I worked at the medical centre. I was at the lab and blood
17 transfusion ward, or department. After 10 years of work at the hospital,
18 I went to the Vukovar municipality where I was appointed sanitary
19 inspector of the municipality of Vukovar.
20 Q. The work of sanitary inspector, did that involve the examination
21 of such things such as water-supply within the Vukovar municipality area?
22 A. Yes, it did.
23 Q. And in very general terms, what other work did that sanitary
24 inspectorate work involve?
25 A. I oversaw health production and manufacturing and also the trade
1 of different foods of animal and biological kind. Also this included the
2 monitoring of the quality of water, combatting the outbreak of infectious
3 diseases. These were the key duties.
4 Q. I just want to deal in very general terms again with the period
5 from, shall we say, August, mid-August, until the fall of Vukovar, which
6 we will ascribe to the 18th of November. Now, I think it's right to say
7 that you were a volunteer and you were working within a -- a medical
8 health capacity for Croatian forces, is that right or not, through that
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. I'd like to deal, if I may, please, with the sort of work you were
12 doing through that two- to three-month period. And I refer to your
13 sanitary work, or your medical work. Did you have any dealings with
14 the -- the water that was being used for drinking in Vukovar?
15 A. Yes, yes, drinking water.
16 Q. If we deal with the period, shall we say September, October,
17 November, how good was the water-supply in Vukovar for the civilian
19 A. Up to a certain point good water quality was maintained in
20 hygienic terms. But as there were electricity cuts, the quality of the
21 water became worse and worse, because it was powered by electricity. And
22 even though the waterworks had experts on its staff who checked the
23 quality of water on a daily basis, we as inspectors also carried out these
24 controls but within other institutions that were authorised to do that.
25 We demanded that the water be of excellent condition in order to be used,
1 and for as long as this was possible the waterworks did supply the town
2 with its water.
3 Q. Did there come a time when it was necessary to take steps to
4 protect the civilian population from harm from the water-supply?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. What was wrong with the standard of water in October and November?
7 A. At the time the town water system was not able to transport water
8 through the pipe system because it was pretty damaged. The actual
9 waterworks itself and the labs were also destroyed. So we needed to take
10 some other more simple measures to order or to warn the population that
11 the water that they were using from wells had to be boiled first, meaning
12 they had to disinfect the water thermically. They had to disinfect the
13 water using a means provided for such cases in order to preserve their
15 Q. The sewers themselves that clearly existed in Vukovar, are you
16 able to say if the sewer pipes were damaged as a result of military
18 A. Yes. There wasn't a single building or facility in Vukovar that
19 was undamaged.
20 Q. If you have sewers or fluid from sewers going into the drinking
21 water and it remains untreated, what sort of illnesses does one then find
23 A. All sorts of illnesses. There were different types of epidemics
24 caused by the bad quality of the water. There was some other illnesses
25 which spread in the water because these were all infectious diseases with
1 a short term of incubation, but which last a long time. They're both
2 infectious and contagious. They spread quickly, and with any sort of lack
3 of caution it can easily lead to sickness.
4 Q. You say that one of the processes that you recommended was
5 thermic. I presume you mean by boiling, is that right, that if you boil
6 water for a period of time, it improves?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. To your personal knowledge, was that advice given to the civilian
9 population in Vukovar through this period?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Can you tell us how that warning or health warning or
12 recommendation was transmitted to the civilian population of Vukovar?
13 A. The Vukovar radio station.
14 Q. And what sort of advice was being given over the radio to the
16 A. Advice was given that water that was used for drinking had to be
17 boiled for at least 10 minutes to kill all the microorganisms that may be
18 in the water.
19 Q. Were chemicals used at any time to sterilise or clean the water?
20 A. Yes, natrum hydrochloride was one of the main agents that was used
21 and that is meant to be used for that purpose in a certain concentration.
22 Q. Thank you. I want to deal with the wells in Vukovar. We know and
23 indeed you have mentioned that wells existed in Vukovar. Do you know how
24 or whether the civilian population used those wells through the
25 three-month period?
1 A. Yes, they did use the wells that were not destroyed, because they
2 were deliberately targeted. If you leave a population without water, it
3 means that it will start dying slowly.
4 Q. When you say that the wells were being deliberately targeted, how
5 do you come to that conclusion?
6 A. My wife went to get water from a neighbour who had wells.
7 Suddenly shells started falling. Luckily the one that fell closest to the
8 well did not actually hit the well, did not explode.
9 Q. You've told us about one incident, perhaps close to home, if I may
10 use that phrase. Did you have any information that other wells were being
11 targeted, wells that were being used by the civilian population through
12 that period?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And can you just expand that answer a little?
15 A. Vukovar was supplied centrally, so that gradually this centralised
16 network expanded through the years. Many people left their old wells, but
17 they didn't completely abandon them, they sort of conserved them. They
18 covered them up to prevent debris falling inside and to maintain the
19 quality of the water. However, when you needed to use the water again
20 that had been preserved in wells like that for a while, it needed to be
21 disinfected first.
22 Q. And what about shells landing in the area of the wells?
23 A. Some wells were destroyed.
24 Q. Can I deal, please, with one area of your evidence or one other
25 area? You've told us that you were living in Vukovar. Up until the
1 17th of November in what sort of building were you living?
2 A. At the hospital, the Vukovar Hospital.
3 Q. But I'm talking about the period before you go to the hospital.
4 Where did you live before then?
5 A. I lived in Borisa Kidrica Street. I don't know what it's called
6 now. It's near the soccer stadium in Vukovar in a kind of depression.
7 These are three buildings four storeys each. I lived on the first floor
8 of the middle building.
9 Q. And how safe was it for you to go out of those buildings through
10 September, October and November?
11 A. It wasn't safe at all because the buildings were about 400 metres
12 away from the right bank of the Vuka River, and that section of town on
13 the right bank of the Vuka River was occupied and there was constant
15 I can say that one day - I don't recall the date - an airplane
16 fired a missile or a rocket, which hit an apartment and destroyed it. It
17 was on the ground floor. My wife happened to be on the ground floor as
18 well, but on the other side. She was on the right-hand side, facing the
20 Q. You've told us about the building away from the right bank of the
21 Vuka River, and you described the -- that area as being occupied and
22 constant shooting. What sort of shooting was there, and by whom?
23 A. Yes. When I would be returning from work, and I'll tell you about
24 one occasion. Three or four metres before I was going to enter the
25 entrance-hall of my building I just happened to move my head and avoided
1 being killed by a grenade or a shell. The shelling was constant. You
2 never knew when it would begin and you never knew when it would stop.
3 Q. Thank you very much. I want to move on to the 17th of November
4 because we've heard much evidence about what happened in Vukovar before
5 then. So let us deal with the 17th of November, there or thereabouts.
6 Can you tell us then, please, why it was you went to the Vukovar Hospital?
7 A. It wasn't safe, and a neighbour came to tell me that tanks had
8 arrived, tanks of the Yugoslav People's Army and that they had already
9 crossed the rail tracks. Later I saw them on a slope. That was when my
10 wife and I decided that the best thing to do would be to leave. And we
11 went to the Vukovar Hospital. This was already late at night. It was
12 dark, there were no lights anywhere. We were just about to turn left into
13 street when they began firing.
14 We continued on our way to the hospital. I entered immediately.
15 My wife couldn't go inside right away, but upon the intervention of my
16 colleagues, she also managed to get inside.
17 That day there wasn't a lot of shelling. I mentioned just that
18 one occasion. It was around 10.00 or 11.00, I can't tell you exactly what
19 time this happened. Then it became quiet in Vukovar. Practically that
20 was the day that Vukovar fell. Because all the soldiers had left the
21 fronts that were there, our fronts.
22 Q. Can I just deal with, please, the hospital itself. Now, I know
23 that you will give evidence that you subsequently went into the hospital.
24 So may I just deal with that? Did you enter the hospital complex with
25 your wife or by yourself?
1 A. With my wife.
2 Q. And when you went into the hospital, did you see any people that
3 you knew?
4 A. I knew many people. I had worked there for 10 years. Milicko
5 Zuvic, Milenko Zugic, Ivankovic, Adam. Those were the colleagues that I
6 used to work with and they were there. Ivankovic came a little bit later
7 after us. Stjepan Guncevic also came there, he arrived a day later.
8 There were many people. We all were at the X-ray ward. We slept in the
9 dark room where the film was developed. We spent time together, in a
10 strange way, because all of us had had something strange happen to us. We
11 didn't expect anything like that to happen in our former country.
12 Q. How would you describe the atmosphere in the hospital at that time
13 when you went in?
14 A. It was very unpleasant, the atmosphere. There was a mass of
15 people standing in the yard. Only a few could actually go inside. The
16 number of people in the yard was maybe from 1.000 to 2.000 or more. I
17 don't know if anyone managed to actually count how many people there were,
18 but I believe that there were at least a thousand people there.
19 Q. Could I ask you if you actually saw anyone called Marin Vidic or
20 sometimes known as Bili Vidic. Did you see him at the hospital?
21 A. Yes, I did see him at the hospital. Before that we worked
22 together at the Vukovar municipality. I also worked together with him
23 during shelling. We went to Borovo in order to take some hygienic and
24 epidemiological measures in order to prevent an outbreak of diseases. So
25 I worked with him. I also saw him at the hospital before the fall of
1 Vukovar. I went to see him personally and we talked. I had a special
2 pass from the Croatian Red Cross to be able to participate in the
3 negotiations. However, when I showed this pass once at Velepromet, they
4 tore it and they told me where I could put it.
5 Q. Again, just dealing with the hospital, can you remember your --
6 your first recollection of the arrival of either JNA soldiers, either
7 regular or irregular?
8 A. It was easy to enter the hospital. I don't know if there was any
9 shooting; I couldn't hear that from the dark room where I was. But it was
10 easy to get in. I don't think that there were any problems until the
11 evacuation of the population began.
12 Q. It's my fault for phrasing it perhaps the way I did. Can you
13 remember the arrival of JNA soldiers coming to the hospital? And if you
14 can, can you tell us, as far as you can remember, when that was?
15 A. This was on the 18th and 19th. It was the morning of the -- from
16 the 18th to the 19th when they came to get Marin Vidic, Bili. A major,
17 Mr. Sljivancanin, and an escort of his whom I knew as Bogdan Kuzmic who I
18 think used to work at the hospital reception. Major Sljivancanin entered
19 Vidic's office, I don't know what they talked about. Probably to agree to
20 a surrender. Even though I spent a lot of time with Marin Vidic we never
21 spoke about that directly. Kuzmic stood at the door. After a certain
22 amount of time they went, they left the hospital and I didn't see Marin
23 Vidic all the time until Sremska Mitrovica when I began to -- an operation
24 to disinfect the prisoners.
25 Q. As far as you could see, who was in charge of the JNA presence at
1 that time? If you can't assist us, do say so.
2 A. Major Sljivancanin was one of the people who was in charge of all
3 those actions starting from taking Marin Vidic, Bili, away. Then other
4 soldiers began to arrive in Yugoslav People's Army uniforms. We were
5 ordered to leave the rooms where we were staying because we were
6 medical -- we were not members of the medical personnel. The medical
7 personnel had their own meeting. I don't know how they resolved this
9 We had to go out into the yard. There were these two soldiers in
10 the yard. We had to line up. There was some words used, quote/unquote,
11 there were curses used, and then after a certain amount of time we had to
12 take everything out of our pockets, place it in front of us to show what
13 we had on us. When this was finished, well, actually it was still
14 underway, we were exposed to curses. They cursed our parents, something
15 that is not really fitting for anyone to use.
16 After that buses were parked in front of the entrance to the
17 Vukovar Hospital.
18 Q. All right. Thank you. That's quite a long answer. I'm going to
19 try and break it into parts, if I may.
20 In fairness, I think it 's right to say you did not know the name
21 of Major Sljivancanin at that time, and you say you saw him with Bogdan
22 Kuzmic; is that correct?
23 A. No. It's like this: I think all of Vukovar knew Major
24 Sljivancanin. He was quite a notorious military officer.
25 Q. All right. Well, can you describe then, please, the -- can you
1 describe the height of the person that you say was Major Sljivancanin?
2 A. He was a person who was, I thought, 180 centimetres tall, but
3 later when I actually saw him, I observed he might be even taller. He had
4 black hair, he wore a moustache, and he always wore a JNA army uniform.
5 Q. And with regard to the hat that he would wear, can you remember
6 what sort of hat he was wearing?
7 A. Yes, I do. A Tito cap with a five-pointed star. He said that he
8 represented the JNA, and that was correct.
9 Q. What sort of attitude did Major Sljivancanin demonstrate to people
10 when he was dealing with them in the hospital?
11 A. He was an extrovert, in my opinion. He refused to take criticism
12 from anyone. He was an operations officer who probably following somebody
13 else's orders, or on his own initiative, carried out his tasks as best he
14 could. I have a high regard of him as a soldier, but not as a human
16 Q. Well, can we just perhaps set aside your personal views on Major
17 Sljivancanin, just deal with the evidence, if you would be so kind.
18 Let's deal with the two soldiers who were in the yard. Now, are
19 you able to say whether they were regular soldiers or TO soldiers?
20 A. I learned later on, because those same two soldiers escorted us to
21 Sremska Mitrovica, that their names were Pero, that was one of them, I
22 don't know his last name, and he hailed from Bosnia, from a village called
23 Josavka, it's more to the west or well near the tri-apartheid border where
24 I had passed on the motorway so I know where it is.
25 Q. My question that I asked you, if you are able to do so, are you
1 able to say whether they were regular soldiers, regular JNA, what I call
2 conscripts, or whether they were TO soldiers who were searching you at
3 that time?
4 A. I think and believe that they were members of the JNA because they
5 wore the same kind of uniforms that the Yugoslav army soldiers wore. And
6 I wouldn't say they were territorials because they escorted us as far as
7 Sremska Mitrovica from Vukovar Hospital.
8 Q. Let us deal with the buses. You've told us that there were buses.
9 Now, how many buses do you remember now as being outside that hospital?
10 A. Five.
11 Q. And you clearly went on a bus.
12 A. The third one.
13 Q. Thank you. I hadn't quite got there, but thank you for answering
14 the question in any event.
15 A. Excuse me, I'm sorry. I apologise.
16 Q. That's all right. Not a problem. How many people were on the bus
17 when it moved off; can you tell us?
18 A. Altogether there were about 200 people. I'm sure of 207, then
19 there were some who were saved.
20 Q. But I'm asking you about just your bus. I want to try and focus
21 now just on your bus and not what we see around. If I do I'll mention
22 that --
23 A. All right.
24 Q. So let's deal with your bus. How many people do you think were in
25 your bus, the bus that you travelled?
1 A. About 40. I can't tell you the precise number because I didn't
2 count, but it was around 40.
3 Q. And of the people that you knew on that bus, what was their
5 A. Like this: All of us were Croats. I don't know about Berghofer
6 because he has a German-sounding last name, but I think he declared
7 himself as a Croat; however, I'm not certain about him.
8 Q. And again the bus that you travelled on, how many women were on
9 that bus that you could see?
10 A. I think there was only one.
11 Q. Let us deal then, please, with the bus moving off. We know from
12 evidence that the buses went to the JNA barracks. So can I just deal with
13 the trip, please, from the hospital to the barracks only.
14 When you were travelling in your bus, to get to the JNA barracks
15 you must cross a bridge over the Vuka River. I think that is correct, is
16 it not?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And when you were travelling over the bridge on the Vuka River,
19 were you able to see any of the other bridges?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And did you see anything occurring on any of the other bridges
22 that caught your attention?
23 A. Yes, I did.
24 Q. Could you very slowly, please, tell us what it is you saw
25 occurring on the other bridge or bridges?
1 A. We were on the right-hand bridge looking downstream. The bridge
2 you're asking me about was the second bridge towards the Danube across the
3 River Vuka. There was a building there which used to be a
4 confectionery and it was very close to the bridge.
5 Should I go on?
6 There I saw several persons. I thought that one of them was
7 Mr. Vance, but it wasn't Mr. Vance; it was someone who resembled him. I
8 don't know what his name was.
9 Q. And when you saw this, as you thought, Mr. Vance, presumably a
10 civilian, was that person alone or not?
11 A. No. He was escorted by Major Sljivancanin and this man whom I
12 thought was Mr. Vance was there, and maybe someone else. But they were
13 standing between the bridge and that house. I was on their left-hand side
14 and in the bus and so I was able to observe that from the bus.
15 Q. Are you able to say whether you were able to identify if there
16 were any soldiers apart from Major Sljivancanin? I'm not asking that you
17 were able to say who they are, just if military personnel were there.
18 A. I'm not sure of that.
19 Q. Let us then deal, please, with the trip across the bridge and
20 moving on to the JNA barracks. Now, do you remember arriving at the JNA
22 A. Yes. I recall that.
23 Q. Can you tell us, please, what happened when you arrived at the JNA
25 A. Before entering the barracks we saw several corpses in the
1 direction of the health centre. I don't know who the dead people were or
2 who had killed them. Before entering the building of the barracks the
3 gate was open and the buses went in one by one. I was in the third bus,
4 and this was also the third bus to go in.
5 Q. Have you any idea what time it was that you arrived at the
6 barracks? And please don't guess.
7 A. I wasn't wearing a watch. But I assume it was around 11.00.
8 Q. Can I deal with the bus that you were travelling on to the JNA
9 barracks? Can you remember any of the names of people who were on that
10 bus with you?
11 A. Yes. Berghofer, Guncevic, a man called Veliki Bojler, Damjan
12 Samardzic. There were people I knew and people I didn't know. There was
13 also a lady, I think. And there were a lot of people there whom I didn't
15 Q. Thank you. Let us deal, please, then, with the bus itself.
16 Again, we have heard that the buses stopped within the precincts of the
17 JNA barracks. Did you see anybody outside the buses when you had parked
18 or stopped?
19 A. Yes. I did.
20 Q. And would you be kind enough to tell us, please, exactly what you
22 A. I saw a soldier wearing a military uniform whom I had seen before
23 he arrived in barracks preparing food in a school for everyone who had
24 been mobilised. They were still volunteers at that point; they were
25 actually mobilised much later. This man hails from Bobota. That's a
1 place some 15 kilometres or less away from Vukovar in the direction of
2 Osijek. Near the Vupik administrative building you have to turn right.
3 He was standing guard in the barracks. There was a big roof and there
4 were lots of weapons underneath it. If someone had activated a single
5 grenade, I think it would have blown up half of Vukovar. Before all this
6 his wife had come to see me.
7 Q. Thank you for that.
8 A. I apologise.
9 Q. That's not a problem. Did you see anybody else apart from the man
10 who cooked for the reservists?
11 A. Yes. I saw persons who spoke with a different kind of accent and
12 they were wearing little round caps. These caps had something on them,
13 and only later on did I learn that they were called Topola. We'll maybe
14 come back to them. I saw -- the caps had braids on them.
15 Let me just try to remember. The last name might come back to me
17 Q. Don't worry about the names. Let's just deal with the general
18 picture and then we'll try and tighten down on detail.
19 I'm sorry, there seems to be a problem. Just one moment, please.
20 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour.
21 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Borovic.
22 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise. Could the Prosecutor
23 ask the witness again about these men with little round caps? The man had
24 said that the caps were round with some kind of braid on them, and that
25 these were poplar trees, or Topola. Could the Prosecutor clarify this,
2 MR. MOORE: Well I hope I'm not going to clarify unless I'm
3 absolutely forced to do so because my learned friend will have ample
4 opportunity to do that in cross-examination, I'm sure. I want to try and
5 keep the witness giving evidence in a particular direction, if you don't
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Yes, carry on, Mr. Moore.
8 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much.
9 Q. Can we just deal with the number of people that you saw in the
10 barracks outside the buses? Can we deal with that?
11 A. Yes. There were people from Vukovar, but also foreigners, people
12 we didn't know. These were persons with whom I had worked in Ovcara once
13 upon a time, Inka, her husband Vlado, then the Sreto I have just mentioned
14 who was guarding those weapons. Many people came to see us, to see what
15 all this looked like. Vlado Kosic, Inka's husband, said, "Emil, choose a
16 good bus," and I asked him which was a better bus, and he said, "Well,
17 they're all the same." He was kind of joking, but it was all serious at
18 the same time. It gave us food for thought.
19 Q. Can I just ask: The people who were outside the buses, people
20 that you've described, did you see any of them wearing uniform or not?
21 A. Yes. Vlado Kosic and his wife had military uniforms, and the man
22 guarding the weapons was also wearing a military uniform, with all the
23 insignia of the JNA.
24 Q. Thank you very much. And how were those people behaving, the
25 people who were outside the bus?
1 A. They were laughing at us. When he told me I hadn't chosen a good
2 bus, I began to understand. I had an idea of what might happen. And
3 that's exactly what did happen.
4 Q. I know there are ladies present, and I know you don't like
5 swearing in their presence, or indeed at all, but can you remember the
6 sort of things that they were saying?
7 A. We Croats had suddenly become Ustashas, according to them. They
8 cursed our Ustasha mothers and fathers. They threatened us. They told us
9 we would not fare well. I had the impression that they knew our
11 Q. Can I deal with, again, just your bus only? Can you remember if
12 anyone in uniform or indeed perhaps not even in uniform, if anyone got on
13 to your bus at the JNA barracks?
14 A. Yes. One or two soldiers got on, and asked whether there was
15 anyone on the bus who was an employee of the medical centre. My friend
16 Guncevic was sitting nearby, said, "Yes, I have a card showing that I am
17 an employee of the medical centre." He showed it to that person, but that
18 person didn't accept the card because there was no photograph on it.
19 Q. How did you feel about the way they were behaving and the things
20 that they were saying to you and the other people in the bus?
21 A. Humiliated. Embarrassed, very bad. I began to reach conclusions
22 about those people and the way they were treating others.
23 Q. And what conclusions were you coming to?
24 A. That they didn't wish us well.
25 Q. Now, you've said that one or two soldiers got on and asked if
1 anyone on the bus was an employee of the medical centre. The person or
2 persons who got on to the bus, clearly you say were soldiers. Are you
3 able to say if they had any rank, whether they were what I will call
4 officers or non-commissioned officers?
5 MR. LUKIC: Objection, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Lukic.
7 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think this is leading. The witness
8 said two soldiers got on, and previously in his testimony he always drew a
9 distinction between people who were soldiers and not, and I think that the
10 Prosecutor is now trying to lead the witness and get him to change his
12 JUDGE PARKER: I'm sorry, Mr. Lukic, I don't agree with your
13 contention. "Soldiers" is a term often used only of the lowest rank but
14 equally of anybody who is a member of the armed force.
15 Are you under control? You were coughing. Yes.
16 And this question is not leading to any particular answer, but
17 inquiring whether the soldiers seen were of any particular rank within the
18 armed force.
19 Carry on, please, Mr. Moore.
20 MR. MOORE:
21 Q. Are you able to assist us with that, Mr. Cakalic?
22 A. In my view, privates, non-commissioned officers, and commissioned
23 officers are all soldiers. In the barracks there were -- or, rather, on
24 the bus there were two soldiers asking who had a card. I didn't have a
25 card, so I didn't say anything. A card of the medical centre.
1 Q. All right. Thank you very much indeed. How long do you think you
2 stayed at the JNA barracks?
3 A. Until about 1400 hours. Please don't hold me to it precisely, but
4 that was the approximate time.
5 Q. Let us then deal with the bus or buses leaving the JNA barracks.
6 We again have heard evidence, and I know that you will give such evidence,
7 that the bus went from the barracks to Ovcara. Can you please deal with
8 that area of evidence? Now, did the buses leave together or one by one;
9 can you tell us?
10 A. In the meantime another bus entered the barracks compound. We
11 didn't know where it was from and why it was there. I can't say whether
12 it left before us or after us, because our heads were looking at the
13 ground. These were frequent instructions given to us, that we should look
14 down. This was the sixth bus that came into the barracks yard. We never
15 found out what the fate of that bus was. Excuse me.
16 Q. That's all right. You've told us that you were given frequent
17 instructions that you should look down. Who gave you those instructions
18 to look down?
19 A. There were two soldiers in the bus. I think that they were just
20 regular soldiers, conscripts, wearing JNA uniforms. They started to
21 mistreat us. If you have rings, if you have gold, if you have money, you
22 should give all of that to us for safe-keeping and then when you come back
23 we will give it back to you. One of them was from Bosnia, I know that for
24 sure. These were young men. I think that they had just arrived, I mean
25 they were just at the beginning of their regular military term of duty.
1 That would be it.
2 Q. Let us deal with Ovcara and the arrival at Ovcara, if I may. Do
3 you remember the bus coming to the hangar at Ovcara and stopping?
4 A. Yes. When it covered the road to Negoslavci, before it got to
5 Negoslavci it turned left and that road leads to Ovcara as well.
6 Actually, the main road that leads to Ovcara goes in the direction of Ilok
7 and Tovarnik.
8 Q. Can you tell us, please, and I'm going to try and break it into
9 parts as I normally do, can you tell us, then, about getting off the bus?
10 Did that occur, please?
11 A. The buses came in a certain order and that was the order in which
12 the people from the bus disembarked. The bus would come in front of the
13 hangar and the people on it would disembark in such a way that they had to
14 pass through a gauntlet before getting to the hangar door. There were
15 Chetniks there as well as prominent people from Vukovar.
16 Q. Can we deal with your arrival at Ovcara? You say that you came
17 out. You've described a gauntlet. I'll deal with that in a moment. But
18 did you see any persons in a JNA -- or JNA uniform outside the hangar in
20 A. Yes. I said that I was in the third bus and that we had started
21 to descend from the third bus when I saw actually what was awaiting us.
22 One man was waiting for us as we were getting off the bus, and he was
23 going through our pockets asking for money. He didn't search me, but he
24 saw my glasses, which were light-sensitive. The sun was going down a bit,
25 and the lenses went a little bit dark. He seemed to like my glasses, he
1 took them, tried them on so that they didn't fit so he threw them down to
2 the ground. This man was wearing a uniform of the JNA, but I could see
3 that it was too tight for him. He couldn't button it up.
4 Q. Can we deal, then, you have told us about a JNA soldier, perhaps a
5 little too large for his uniform. Did you see any JNA soldiers where the
6 uniform seemed to fit?
7 A. These were soldiers who had come in our escort, these first ones.
8 Secondly, when we were passing through this gauntlet, I saw my one-time
9 friend, Slavko Dokmanovic. We had worked together at the municipal
10 offices at one time. We even spent time together. He called out, "Oh,
11 look, it's our inspector. Emil, you're here as well. What are you doing
13 I said, "What could I be doing? I'm doing what everyone is doing,
14 getting off the bus and going to the hangar."
15 They were beating people severely; men were just falling down.
16 There were all sorts of people there from Territorial Defence of Vukovar
18 Q. I want to deal with the type of beating and the nature and
19 severity of the beating. I know you don't like discussing it, but would
20 you please tell the Court as precisely as you can the sort of beatings
21 that were being given and whether any weapons were being used?
22 A. I have to name the people so that you could tell who is who.
23 Slavko Dokmanovic was there, people from the Vukovar Territorial Defence
24 were there. They were using bats for the beating. Some were using their
25 weapons. They were also kicking people. They were actually using
1 whatever they had, including their fists, their feet. I'm talking about
2 that space from the bus to the hangar.
3 Q. And did anybody fall to the ground as a result of the beating?
4 A. Yes. This was already happening at the hangar. Damjan Samardzic
5 fell; his nickname was Veliki Bojler. Another person whose name was
6 Kemal. They were entering the hangar and they killed them with their
7 kicks. They were beating them. They were first of all lying on their
8 back and then they were lying on stomach, both Kemal and Damjan.
9 Q. But I want to deal just with the gauntlet, before we get to the
10 hangar, all right? So let's just deal with the gauntlet before anybody
11 goes into the hangar.
12 So dealing with that -- what I will call the path to the hangar,
13 you know the gauntlet was either side, did you see anybody fall to the
14 ground when they were going through the gauntlet only?
15 A. I was probably already inside, and we were not able to look back.
16 I didn't look back. You needed to get into the hangar as soon as possible
17 because the beating was pretty severe.
18 Q. How severely were you beaten? You, yourself.
19 A. Dokmanovic did not hit me, but he provoked others so that they
20 would know my first and last name, and when he said, "Inspector" they
21 probably thought I was some sort of police inspector. Had he not called
22 out my name, I don't think I would have had such a bad time of it.
23 Q. And can you tell the Court how bad a time of it you had? Can you
24 describe to the Court, tell them how severely you were beaten? Do you
25 mind doing that?
1 A. Yes, I can. Everyone was covered with blood. I hadn't seen such
2 a beating anywhere. Only in the movies. They really fell upon us,
3 including the members of the Territorial Defence. And I think had
4 somebody not said that the colonel was coming, they would have really
5 worked us over terribly.
6 Q. We'll come to the phrase about the colonel coming.
7 Let me just deal finally with the following piece, or the
8 following question. You've mentioned persons in the gauntlet, the Vukovar
9 TO defence, Dokmanovic. Did you see anybody in JNA uniform in that
10 gauntlet or not?
11 A. Dokmanovic was wearing a JNA uniform. He was wearing rank
12 insignia; he was either a lieutenant-colonel or a major. He had a blue
13 uniform, a Tito cap with a five-pointed star on his head. He arrived as a
15 Q. And how many people were either side of you when you entered? How
16 many people were in the gauntlet? Can you give us an idea?
17 A. About 12 to 13 people on each side. So twice the number. It
18 was 12 to 13 people on each side, perhaps more.
19 Q. I want to go on to the actual hangar itself when you go inside the
21 MR. MOORE: Before I ask any questions, might I inquire of the
22 Court if this would be an appropriate time or would Your Honour wish me to
23 continue? This is quite a good break point for a witness to give
24 evidence. The only thing that I would ask is if I'm going to deal with
25 the hangar, that I deal with the hangar in toto.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Unfortunately, Mr. Moore, it's a little early and
2 runs us into some tightness later.
3 MR. MOORE:
4 Q. Can I deal with the hangar itself. You've told us about the
5 hangar. Did you actually know the Ovcara hangar before that day?
6 A. I passed by the hangars at least 100 times, because there was a
7 fishpond there and I used to go there for fishing.
8 Q. Can we deal, then, please, with your entry into the hangar?
9 You've told us that you had gone through the gauntlet and the various
10 beatings. When you went into the hangar, had you been injured in the
11 beatings at the gauntlet?
12 A. Yes. And this repeated itself in the hangar as well. Milos, not
13 Milan Bulic, actually took the crutch from one of the people who were
14 wounded. His name was Dado, and he hit me twice on the neck with that
15 crutch, and I fell. I got up and I went after him; however, he had
16 already moved on to a different place.
17 As far as my vertebrae on my neck is concerned, I still have
18 problems to this very day. I always have to go and have my neck adjusted
19 and it's very painful, and every time it begins to hurt, it always reminds
20 me of the terrible time that I had when I got that injury.
21 MR. MOORE: Just to assist the Court, we will be seeking leave to
22 put an exhibit before the Court, namely, this witness's -- or a medical
23 examination of this witness in 1992 and the injuries that we say were
24 caused in Ovcara and elsewhere.
25 Q. Can we deal, then, please, with what you saw inside the hangar?
1 How many people were inside that hangar; can you remember?
2 A. There was about 207 people. This is a number that we came to by
3 compiling the information for ourselves. The people who had entered the
4 hangar before us had to lean directly against the wall with their arms and
5 legs spread and the hands were touching the wall while the feet were away
6 from the wall. And that was the position that they were in as we were
7 entering the hangar.
8 When they started to beat us, not only by the people there, but
9 others, all of them who were there were inflicting blows. They were
10 certainly lacking in humanity. There was some straw in one corner. We
11 went and sat on that straw, and I could see that people were trying to
12 clean the blood off. And that's where we were waiting to see what would
13 happen to us next.
14 Q. You told us earlier on about two individuals that you saw
15 attacked, and you mentioned specifically Samardzic, and I think Kemo.
16 A. Kemal and Samardzic, yes.
17 Q. Can I deal, please, with what you saw occurring with Samardzic.
18 Will you tell the Court, please, what you saw?
19 A. Samardzic entered the hangar after me, and he left the bus after I
20 did. So as he was passing through the gauntlet of the people who were
21 beating us they entered the hangar and then they fell upon them. I think
22 that both of them were dead within a couple of minutes. They were beating
23 them on the head, the back, then they placed them on their stomach and
24 then they jumped on them. I think that that is a terrible death.
25 Q. And you say that "they" were beating them on the head. Who
1 were "they"?
2 A. The people who were in the gauntlet and then there were also some
3 members of the Territorial Defence who came inside.
4 Q. And what about Kemal? How was he attacked?
5 A. In the same way that Damjan Samardzic was attacked. There was no
6 longer any time to actually look. It was necessary to find a space where
7 you could protect yourself. We didn't even look that much because it was
8 important to save your own head. Those who had been beaten on the head
9 were unfortunate. All of us were fleeing inside the hangar and were
10 trying to protect our head. Perhaps I wouldn't have sustained such a blow
11 to my neck had not the person who hit me -- I keep forgetting, Milos,
12 Milan Vujic, he came up to me from the back and hit me on the neck from
13 the back. That's when I fell and then I stood up and I ran after him. I
14 probably would have gotten into a fight with him, but he had already gone
16 Q. Perhaps it was a good thing you didn't get into a fight with him.
17 But let's just deal with the situation in the hangar. These attacks that
18 you have described to -- of other attacks as well, did you see anyone
19 trying to stop these attacks being carried out on you? Not just you
20 personally, but you as a group?
21 A. No, I didn't see that.
22 Q. Can you remember if you saw anyone wearing a JNA uniform inside
23 the hangar?
24 A. Yes, I did. But only after the officers came. There was one
25 soldier who was guarding the hangar. He was wearing a JNA uniform. I
1 knew him. He's the son of a certain Marijana who worked with me at the
2 municipal office. He kept opening and closing the hangar door when
4 Q. Now, you have told us that you did see people wearing JNA
5 uniforms, but the phrase that you used was, "But only after the officers
6 came." So can you tell us, please, in your words, about the officers
7 coming to the hangar?
8 A. Someone rushed into the hangar, and I don't know who it was, and
9 they said a colonel and two lieutenant-colonels were coming. I think that
10 he even said the colonel's last name, but I can't be sure about that. In
11 any case, when they arrived, there was silence in the hangar.
12 Q. And you've said, "When they arrived." Can you just tell us,
13 please, about their arrival and what happened as far as you can remember
14 it, having been hit around the head?
15 A. Yes. The first thing I thought was that these were educated
16 people who had completed high military schools, who had been taught about
17 humane conduct and that they would prevent that, and they did prevent it
18 for a minute. All of those who were in the hangar, they all fled outside.
19 Only the soldier remained who was actually guarding the hangar entrance.
20 Q. And what did you then see? You said that it prevented it, but
21 only for a minute. What did you mean by that?
22 A. At that point perhaps a little bit before the officers entered the
23 hangar, Stevan Zoric came. His nickname was Cevo. And he told me to
24 come, to move from the straw. I went up to him and I said, "Well, you're
25 not going to kill me?"
1 He said, "No, you did a lot for me, and you did it when I needed
2 it most and I'm going to save you."
3 And he took me outside. The officers hadn't arrived yet. I was
4 outside, and then Guncevic and all seven of us, actually, were being
5 brought outside. We were taken out into the yard, and we were standing a
6 little bit off to the side from the hangar entrance, and that was when the
7 JNA officers entered the hangar. We saw everything that was going on in
8 the hangar at that time. Suddenly the hangar doors closed, this was a tin
9 sliding door, and then we heard terrible moaning and wailing.
10 If you permit me, I just wanted to say something else. Do you
11 permit me?
12 Before the officers entered the hangar a man came, I've never seen
13 such a fat and such a large man. He had a real cockade on his cap. He
14 had some sort of rubber bat that was very flexible. He was wearing
15 hand-grenades on him and other things. And he seemed to have a thing for
16 Stef Guncevic. There was a major of the JNA next to him, and he
17 said, "Give me that electric prod so that I can kill this man."
18 And that Chetnik, the person wearing the Chetnik clothing
19 said, "Don't. There's a lot of people watching."
20 Then when they announced that the colonel and two
21 lieutenant-colonels were coming, at that moment all the members of the TO
22 and all of those who were in the hangar just for no reason fled outside.
23 Q. You've told us about being taken outside, and you have told us
24 about the door sliding closed and hearing moaning inside. Do you remember
25 that evidence?
1 A. That's when all of us had been brought outside. All seven of us
2 had been taken outside again.
3 Q. But what I want to know is this: You've told us about, as you
4 believed, JNA officers arriving. When you were taken outside, had the JNA
5 officers arrived or not?
6 A. They arrived, I was taken outside. All of us who had been taken
7 outside returned into the hangar to see what was going on. Then they
8 asked about us. I was closest to him, and I said to him that some lads
9 had saved us and then he made a list of us. He asked who had saved us,
10 how we knew him, he asked me who I was, the date of my birth and place of
11 residence. He noted all this down on a piece of paper for each one of us
12 and he kept those pieces of paper.
13 Q. Are you all right? Is your neck still causing problems?
14 A. I'm all right.
15 Q. You've told us --
16 A. My neck is painful, but I can stand it.
17 Q. All right.
18 JUDGE PARKER: We can break now or when you like.
19 MR. MOORE: Could I just ask one or two questions, if Your Honour
20 doesn't mind.
21 Q. You've told us about the officers, and then you've referred to --
22 and you used the words "he asked who had saved," and you keep referring to
23 a "he", but you haven't told us who "he" is. Can you tell us who that
24 person is or whether he had a uniform or any rank?
25 A. He did not have rank. He was a soldier. He had the military
1 jacket, but his trousers were different. The trousers were not the same
2 colour as far as I can remember. They didn't seem to go with the jacket.
3 And he said to me that he was saving me because I had once done him some
4 sort of big favour. Later on I assumed, and I stress I assume, that I had
5 helped him get sanitary approval before he had been given an appointment
6 or something like that.
7 Q. All right. Thank you very much. I'm going to -- we're going to
8 adjourn now, with His Honour's leave. And then when we return I'm going
9 to ask you questions about the JNA officers who had arrived. Do you
10 follow? But we'll do that after the break.
11 JUDGE PARKER: We will resume at 10 minutes past, Mr. Moore.
12 --- Recess taken at 3.47 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 4.18 p.m.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Moore.
15 MR. MOORE:
16 Q. Can we now deal, please, with the hangar and you told us about, I
17 think, three officers coming. So, when did they arrive, please? Just in
18 general sequence.
19 A. Well, sometime around 3.30 or 4.00 [as interpreted]. It was
20 already dark at 5.00, and it was still daylight when they arrived.
21 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic.
23 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. On page 32, line 3 of the
24 transcript I thought the witness said they had come between 3.00 and 3.30,
25 whereas in the transcript it says 3.30 or 4.00.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
2 Mr. Moore.
3 MR. MOORE:
4 Q. Mr. Cakalic, we've got a small problem with our electronic machine
5 which records our evidence. Can you remember approximately what time
6 these officers came? You've told us that it got dark at about -- it was
7 already dark at 5.00. When did they come?
8 A. We set out there -- I'm really trying hard. It was impossible to
9 determine the precise time. I can only give you approximate times. One
10 must understand we were all concerned with staying alive. We weren't
11 asking ourselves what time it was to the minute.
12 Q. All right. I think the Court understand. But let's then deal
13 with the officers. So when they came, was it daylight or was it dark?
14 A. It was still daylight. It was still daylight, yes. But it was
15 towards the end of the day, so it was already beginning to grow a little
16 dark. That was at the time of year when nights are longer.
17 Q. And can you tell us, then, please, how you were aware about
18 officers arriving?
19 A. Somebody on the outside probably said to someone that the officers
20 were coming, and all the paramilitaries who were in the hangar at that
21 time all disappeared together with territorials. They simply vanished,
22 all of them.
23 Q. What I want to focus on is the officers. Did you see the officers
25 A. Yes, I did. I saw them arrive and enter the hangar.
1 Q. And how many officers as you have described them, how many were
3 A. One colonel and two lieutenant-colonels.
4 Q. And how were you able to assess or work out that one was a colonel
5 and two were lieutenant-colonels?
6 A. The colonel had epaulets with a golden edge and three stars. The
7 lieutenant-colonels also had a golden edge around the epaulet, but only
8 two stars.
9 Q. And can you remember what sort of hat or head-gear they were
10 wearing? Please don't guess if you don't know.
11 A. They had Tito caps with five-pointed stars. These were the
12 insignia of the normal JNA at the time.
13 Q. And can you tell us, please, what those three officers did when
14 they arrived?
15 A. When they went in it was very quiet inside. People thought that
16 what had been happening up to that point would stop. There was no one
17 from among the paramilitaries, as I have already said, because they had
18 all left. The officers spoke to those of us who had been saved who had
19 received the guarantee from someone, and as I have already said, he made a
20 list of us all, first and last name, date of birth, father's name, and
21 then we left the hangar.
22 Q. Now, let's deal with the three officers who arrived. Were there
23 any other soldiers who arrived with the officers?
24 A. I don't remember that.
25 Q. And you say that you were spoken to, or "the officers spoke to
1 those of us who had been saved." Can you remember when --
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. -- or where that occurred? Was that inside the hangar or outside
4 the hangar?
5 A. We spoke only inside the hangar. There was a small table, and the
6 colonel, it was the colonel who did it himself, he used that table to
7 write on. And now I'm ready for the next question.
8 Q. And how many people did he speak to when he was at the table?
10 A. He was standing more than sitting at that table, and he spoke to
11 me for only about a minute, or maybe seven to eight minutes, but that
12 sounds like a lot.
13 Q. After he had spoken to you, what did you do or where did you go?
14 A. When the conversation was over, we left the hangar. One of the
15 officers had probably summoned a vehicle from Vukovar. It was already
16 beginning to grow dark. We were escorted to a Citroen-make car. Near
17 that car I met someone I knew who was the driver. There were two soldiers
18 properly dressed in the regulation JNA uniform, and this man Mile Bakic
19 recognised me and he asked me what I was doing there. And I said, "well,
20 the same as everybody else." And he said, "Well, come and sit next
21 to me." He sat in the driver's seat, I sat next to him. On the
22 right-hand side there was a soldier with a gun. There were, in fact, two
23 soldiers, the second one sat behind with the other men. Six men were
24 behind and the soldier. In front was the soldier, Bakic and myself in the
1 Q. Now, I have a number of questions I want to ask. I'll just deal
2 with the car and then return to the hangar.
3 You've told us about the Citroen, I think your described it, and
4 you told us about two soldiers in it. Are you able to tell us the age of
5 the soldiers who were in that vehicle? Are you able to say whether they
6 were regular JNA or not?
7 A. These soldiers, judging by their clothes, were members of the
8 regular JNA units. That's what regular soldiers looked like. As for
9 Bakic, well, it was getting dark, but I think he was wearing civilian
10 clothes. I couldn't swear to that, but I have that impression.
11 Q. You've told us about the colonel speaking to you at the table, and
12 he was speaking to you inside the hangar. How long did you remain at the
13 hangar before you left Ovcara in that vehicle?
14 A. When he had taken down our names and details, we went out of the
15 hangar, one by one. And then we waited for all of us to gather together.
16 And then we were called by someone and I can't recall who now. And then
17 we were taken several metres, I don't know how many, to that vehicle. I
18 think it may have been the soldiers who were in the vehicle who escorted
19 us to the vehicle, but I can't be certain of that.
20 Q. From the time that you were taken -- or you went away from the
21 table and you went outside and then a group of you came together, you had
22 told us earlier on that you had believed that the beatings had stopped.
23 Are you able to say whether any of the beatings resumed when the officers
24 were there? I'm not talking about what you had been told; I just want to
25 ask about the period when you were outside.
1 A. I understand your question. From the time when these high-ranking
2 officers arrived and we went out, there was silence. The doors of the
3 hangar were closed. Some men with helmets had arrived, I don't know how
4 many, in a special vehicle, and they went in. They were carrying bats,
5 and then the parade began. They started beating men until they fell down.
6 I don't know how many were killed, but I believe that more than a few were
7 killed. You could hear screams from afar, even though the hangar was
8 closed. And it was horrible. It was terrible.
9 Q. You've told us about men in helmets going in and beating, and the
10 screams. How long did that go on for? Are you able to help us? The
11 screams and the beating.
12 A. They were probably divided into two groups. One group was resting
13 and the other group was beating. But I couldn't tell you for how long. I
14 wasn't focusing on that. It's hard to say. If you're between life and
15 death, it's hard.
16 Q. Can we deal, then, with the names of the people who travelled in
17 the vehicle with you? Now, do you know the names of some of the people
18 who travelled that evening with you?
19 A. To Vukovar?
20 Q. So we get it absolutely right, perhaps I'll rephrase the question.
21 You've told us about going in a van and being escorted with two
22 regular soldiers. You told us there were seven. Can you tell us the
23 names of the people? Is that an easier way?
24 A. Yes. Cakalic, Stjepan Guncevic, Tihomir Perkovic, Vlado Dudas,
25 Zarko Kojic, Tihomir Perkovic. That's seven of us.
1 Q. Perhaps I had better recount because that isn't seven for me.
2 There is yourself, Mr. Guncevic, Mr. Kojic --
3 A. Berghofer, Kojic, Berghofer, Vlado Dudas.
4 Q. I have -- I have six names. I will repeat them and if you --
5 don't guess if you can't remember. There is yourself, Mr. Guncevic,
6 Mr. Berghofer, Mr. Kojic, Mr. Perkovic and Mr. Dudas. If you can't
7 remember any other names, don't worry about that. Let's move on and set
8 that aside, shall we?
9 Now, you are in the vehicle, and where did that vehicle go to,
11 A. That vehicle went towards Velepromet in Vukovar.
12 Q. And when you got to Velepromet, did you actually go inside the
13 Velepromet facility or not? Can you tell us, please?
14 A. We stopped in front of the gate.
15 Q. And did you go in?
16 A. Yes, we did. But without the car.
17 Q. And can you tell us what happened at Velepromet? Did you stay
18 there or did you go anywhere else?
19 A. The soldiers who had escorted us to there said they were leaving
20 us to them and that if the soldiers did not come by 7.00 a.m. the
21 following morning they had to kill them -- kill us. The commander who was
22 there, he was from Negoslavci, I knew him. He had taken some exams with
23 me. He said, "No, I am not going to kill them, and you are not going to
24 leave them here. Go to Modateks."
25 Q. Well, let's move on to Modateks. Did you go on to Modateks?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And how long did you stay at Modateks?
3 A. It was dark. That was a company that made clothes and the halls
4 were full of sewing-machines. They put us in a room where there were over
5 a hundred women. There were also elderly people there lying on
6 stretchers, women.
7 Q. So how long did you stay at Modateks, then, please?
8 A. I think we spent two nights there.
9 Q. Well, can you tell us then when you left Modateks, where did you
11 A. Back to Velepromet.
12 Q. And when you went back to Velepromet, what happened at Velepromet,
14 A. They took us from Modateks. We were escorted by a man who had
15 been tasked to do that, and the man also arrived from Vukovar whom I knew,
16 they took us to Velepromet. And in front of Velepromet there were some
17 people, I don't know how many, across the road. We came by the road and
18 they were on the other side of the road and they started yelling, "Give me
19 Berghofer, give me Cakalic, give me this one or that one. We want to kill
20 them." I knew one of them, and I said, "You should be ashamed of
21 yourself." But he pretended he didn't hear me.
22 We went into Velepromet. They took us toward the death room.
23 That's what that room was called because all kinds of things happened
24 there. It was a carpentry workshop belonging to Velepromet.
25 MR. MOORE: Now, what I'm going do is I'm going to have, I hope
1 produced electronically, an aerial photograph of Velepromet. It is number
2 04672115. It is a photograph the that Court has seen before.
3 Now, can that be displayed, please? I'm hoping that it can be
4 shown on e-court because I want to use the magic pen.
5 Q. Now, do you have in front of you -- Mr. Cakalic, the microphone is
6 being blocked, I see, for you. I don't know if you'll be able to be
8 Now just before you put pen to pencil [sic], can I just explain to
9 you, just one moment. We have a photograph of Velepromet. Can you see it
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. The road is to the right that goes from Vukovar to Negoslavci, the
13 entrance is to the right. Now, are you able to put a large circle around
14 the area where you believe the room of death was located? Can you do
15 that? Now, the pen, if you just draw on it. Try again.
16 A. [Marks].
17 Q. Thank you very much. If you would just put the pen down, please,
18 and we'll mark that as an A. Perhaps a capital A, would that be possible
19 for someone to do that? Yes, or the usher will help you, I'm sure, to put
20 an A.
21 A. [Marks].
22 MR. MOORE: And might I make application for that to be made an
23 exhibit, please?
24 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this will be exhibit number 265.
1 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much. Could that photograph now be,
2 please, removed from the screen?
3 Q. Mine has disappeared; I hope yours has disappeared as well,
4 Mr. Cakalic.
5 Now, let's deal, please, with the room of death as you have
6 described it. Is it still there?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Thank you very much. Let's deal, then, with what happened at
9 Velepromet. Where were you taken?
10 A. We were at Velepromet until approximately midnight. Many people
11 were taken out there. They were killed. Tihomir Perkovic was killed.
12 Also the director of the Vukovar abattoir, Karlo Crk, Martin Sajtovic and
13 his son were killed. Tihomir Perkovic was killed.
14 Q. Can I deal, please, with the Velepromet facility and who
15 controlled the facility at that time. Did you see anyone with uniforms
16 controlling the Velepromet facility or within the Velepromet facility?
17 Are you able to remember or not?
18 A. I saw Dr. Mico Maric. He was somewhat concealed. I know that one
19 of our people whom I saw at Velepromet was suffering from diabetes and he
20 was feeling unwell. So he gave him a little bit of sugar. He was almost
21 in a hypoglycemic coma, so he gave him some sugar.
22 Please, could you repeat the question? I'm sorry.
23 Q. That's all right. I'm sure it was the way I put it.
24 When you were put in the room of death, did anybody guard the room
25 of death?
1 A. Yes, two soldiers guarded it. There was the entrance, you saw the
2 windows. The entrance was next to the windows. There was some rooms to
3 the right side and the death room was on the left side. These soldiers
4 robbed us of everything that we had. Soldiers. They took our personal
5 documents, money, they took everything, everything, and destroyed it.
6 Q. Were these the only soldiers that you saw at Velepromet?
7 A. There were also those in uniforms, but I knew that they weren't
8 soldiers, because I knew them.
9 Q. So when you refer to the two soldiers who guarded the room of
10 death, what sort of uniform were they wearing?
11 A. Typical soldiers' uniforms. A cap, Tito-style cap with a
12 five-pointed star, a belt, jacket, rifle.
13 Q. Are you able to say whether they were regular JNA soldiers or not?
14 A. I couldn't say. However, they were dressed like regular soldiers.
15 Q. What about the age of these soldiers? Are you able to say if they
16 were old, middle-aged or young?
17 A. They were young men.
18 Q. You have told us about people being taken out from the room of
19 death. Who was being taken out from the room of death?
20 Can I just withdraw that question, because it's a silly question.
21 There's my apologies.
22 The room of death, when you went in, were there any other people
23 in that room or not?
24 A. Yes, there were.
25 Q. The people that you knew, what ethnicity were they within that
1 room of death?
2 A. You mean the captured people?
3 Q. Yes, I do.
4 A. They were Croats.
5 Q. And the people who were taking them out, can you tell us what sort
6 of people were removing the Croats from that room and killing them, as you
8 A. Usually first the doors would open, a person dressed in a JNA
9 uniform was -- he was in the JNA but he also worked at Vuteks, he wore
10 hand-grenades on either side, he also had a belt, and he actually had two
11 rifles, two automatic rifles with short barrels. That was a certain
12 Zarko; I knew him very well. When he would leave, they would lock the
13 door again. There was a padlock there, so after a certain amount of time
14 the doors would be unlocked again and then so-and-so would be called out
15 and then so-and-so and then so-and-so. Tihomir Perkovic who had gone
16 through this whole parade with us together was taken out and brought back
17 in three times. The fourth time they took him out he never returned. I
18 never heard anything of him, and I don't know what happened to him.
19 Q. You've told us that the people were taken outside and killed.
20 Well, how do you know they were killed?
21 A. I heard of Karlo Crk because if you recall he was under just the
22 windows in the room that I described. So Karlo Crk was taken out, and
23 right in front of the door the person who was waiting for him talked to
24 him. He said, "Karlo, what was the situation at the abattoir, what
25 happened to the money what happened to this, what happened to that." They
1 were talking about sort of superficial things and then you heard a bang
2 [as interpreted] and then a noise and then I never heard of Karlo Crk
3 again. He was an agronomy engineer, and he was the director of the
4 Vukovar abattoir and I never heard of him again.
5 Q. The other people that you saw taken out, the people that you knew
6 that were not brought back, did you ever see them again?
7 A. No, no.
8 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
9 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Lukic [sic].
10 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. I have another
11 intervention to the transcript. It's page 43, line 6. The witness said
12 that then he heard a blow, and that he never saw that person again. In
13 the transcript it says [In English] "Bang." [Interpretation] A bang,
14 which seems to me can mean several things.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Moore.
16 MR. MOORE:
17 Q. Can I ask you about Karlo Crk? It's just to help us with the
18 documents that are created. I just want to deal with that again very
20 You say that you saw -- or knew that Karlo was outside, he had
21 been taken outside. He had been asked about the situation at the
22 abattoir, and you said --
23 A. I heard that he was outside.
24 Q. Yes. And you said that you heard a noise. Now, one person has
25 heard "blow," one person has heard "bang." Can you help us, whether it
1 was a blow or whether it was a bang?
2 Well, I see my learned friends grimacing, but I don't know see why
3 they are grimacing, because I am dealing with the point I hope, perfectly
5 JUDGE PARKER: Carry on, Mr. Moore.
6 MR. MOORE:
7 Q. So are you able to help me with that, or to help the Court with
9 A. I heard a blow. You can sort of perceive it in a way. It was a
10 blow, a whack, a slap, and I never heard anything of him again. I know
11 later that he was buried and so on and so forth.
12 Q. All right. Thank you very much. May I thank Mr. Vasic for that.
13 Now, can we deal, then, please, with the room that you were in.
14 How long did you remain in that room? Have you any idea?
15 A. Until midnight.
16 Q. And can you tell us then how you were removed from the room or how
17 you were taken out of the room?
18 A. A captain came, Captain Kosa. He entered the room. He sort of
19 mingled with us, and he said, "Come on, men. Go out. I am here with a
20 bus to get you, and if you don't go out, the Chetniks will come and
21 they'll slaughter you all."
22 I asked him to give his officers's word, which is what he did and
23 then we believed him. We went outside. Well, you know what we needed to
24 do first. Our bladders were full. And then after that, with this
25 captain, we followed him to the bus which was a little bit at a distance
1 from us. I don't know how many metres. We entered the bus, and they
2 tried to turn the ignition on, but the motor wouldn't start, and then they
3 made another attempt. And then he said, "Well, let's go out and push the
4 bus and then it will -- the ignition will go on." That's what we did. We
5 pushed, the engine was turned on. And we didn't even reach the door, and
6 the Chetniks had already started singing their songs, they'll be meat or
7 flesh, their usual songs. Slobo, Slobo, send us some salad, there will be
8 meat, we're slaughtering Croats, that was the sort of thing that they were
10 Q. So you are in a bus that eventually works. And where did you end
11 up? Where did the bus go to?
12 A. To the Vukovar barracks.
13 Q. And can you tell us very briefly, please, what happened at the
15 A. Nothing. We were received well by young conscripts. They gave us
16 something to eat, we were hungry, they gave us water. They behaved
17 properly towards us. We talked amongst ourselves a lot. Then they put us
18 in a room. Some more senior soldiers came to that room later. I don't
19 know what their position was, but they started slowly to slap some men.
20 They didn't touch me, but I saw them do it to others. They spoke in a
21 strange accent. I don't think that they were from that area. And I don't
22 think that they were from Slavonia at all.
23 This went on all night. They untied a man's hands which had been
24 tied with some sort of wire. We tried that already in the room of death,
25 but it was twined in such a way that we couldn't untangle it. Then the
1 soldiers came with some sort of shears and they freed this young man's
2 hands. But as a counterfavour he had to swallow two bullets.
3 Q. Can I just ask you about something that you've given evidence
4 about? You told us about wire around the wrists of a young man. And you
5 had said that you tried to remove the wire when you were in the room of
6 death. Was he the only person who had his wrists tied up in wire? Do you
7 know if anybody else had?
8 A. I don't. I don't know.
9 Q. Let's go back then to the JNA barracks. You say he had to swallow
10 bullets. How long did you stay in the barracks themselves, approximately?
11 A. Until about 8.00 in the morning.
12 Q. And can you tell us then how it was you left the barracks?
13 A. We were all called to a kind of hall where there were a lot of
14 women also. A captain first class arrived. I think he was dressed in
15 some sort of coat, not even a marshal would have such a coat. He was very
16 decently dressed, and he said the following, "All of the Croats stay where
17 you are, and everyone else should cross to the other side." And.
18 A woman asked a silly question. She said, "And what am I, my
19 husband is a Serb and I am a Croat." He replied, "You decide." She went
20 to join the women, but I don't know which ones.
21 And then he said -- he introduced himself, "I am Captain Vojin
22 Misic, a Serb from Negoslavci. We will kill all of you, you hear? Burn
23 you, set you on fire, and completely erase your Croatian seed by throwing
24 your ashes into the Danube."
25 Q. And what did you think when that was said to you?
1 A. First of all, I thought if this was a normal person and was he
2 really considering doing something like that. Still, he should have
3 adhered to military rules and regulations. Ultimately he didn't do that.
4 Q. So what did he do?
5 A. Nothing. He insulted us, cursed us and then a bus was brought.
6 We were getting ready to board the bus and getting ready to go to the last
7 detention camp.
8 Q. Is your neck all right? I see you --
9 A. It's all right. I'm adjusting it.
10 Q. Now, can I just deal, please, with -- and I will move on in time.
11 I think it's right to say that you went to Sremska Mitrovica; is that
12 correct or not?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And can you tell us how you got there?
15 A. First we passed through the last Croatian village, that was
16 Tovarnik, and then we entered Sid. We waited there for quite a while; I
17 don't know why. Then we set off. We arrived at Sremska Mitrovica. We
18 came to the main square. The sports hall is close by. The driver
19 stopped. Officers of the JNA came to look at us and to insult us. They
20 ranged from the rank of major to the rank of colonel. They told us all
21 sorts of things such as, "We would like to let you go, but Tudjman doesn't
22 want you, so now we have to take care of you."
23 Q. Can I deal with how you were treated at Sremska Mitrovica?
24 A. We came to the entrance. After we left that first place where we
25 stopped in Mitrovica, we came to the actual prison in Mitrovica. It was
1 the prison where people who had been sentenced and convicted would serve
2 out their sentence. We were going in through a pretty narrow entrance.
3 You would go to that entrance and then you would have to step three or
4 four steps down in order to get to the floor. And that's where they were
5 waiting for us, police officers, dressed in police uniforms immediately
6 started to beat us. These were not military police officers, but just
7 regular police officers.
8 They beat us, we were running, running until we reached a plateau.
9 They asked us there one by one, there were two people there. One of them
10 spoke in a Bosnian accent. I don't know what the other person was. He
11 didn't really talk much. This first man was saying, "What's your name, my
12 name is so-and-so, what did you do. I did this and that." And then he
13 would say, "Oh, that's what you did. You were killing Serbs," and so on
14 and so forth. This went on for some time. Then we were sent to the
15 sports hall. I remember one police officer in a blue uniform. One of the
16 doors was not working properly.
17 Q. Forgive me for interrupting. I just want to stop your evidence at
18 that place, if I may. I would like to deal now with one or two other
20 MR. MOORE: Might I make application to go into private session
21 for a short period?
22 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
23 [Private session]
25 [Open session]
1 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much.
2 Q. Would you look at this document, please, which is dated the 13th
3 of February, 1992?
4 MR. MOORE: Your Honour, to assist the Court, there are two
5 documents here. There is the original in B/C/S and there is an English
6 document. The English document which may assist the Court is
7 number 00320180. I don't know if the Court can locate that or not.
8 Well, perhaps it might assist the Court if I just deal with the
9 original and then we can deal with the translation, we can do it one at a
11 Q. Mr. Cakalic, would you be kind enough to have a look at that
12 document, the hard copy, as it is now called, to your left-hand side?
13 Perhaps he can be shown that, please. It's not really necessary
14 to put it on the ...
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Now, I think it's right to say that --
17 A. These are the results of my medical tests, the first ones after I
18 left the camp.
19 Q. Thank you very much.
20 MR. MOORE: And Your Honour, there is an English translation. I'm
21 entirely in the Court's hands. I call out the number. It's a 65 ter
22 number -- I think it's number 1 -- number 7. It should be number 7. The
23 number is 00320180.
24 Q. Mr. Cakalic, if you will forgive us for the delay. It's one of
25 the benefits of the electronic system.
1 MR. MOORE: Your Honour, I don't wish to take up any more time. I
2 don't know if it's going to be possible or not. It is an English
3 translation. I certainly don't have it. Well, I will work on the
4 assumption that the Court has a copy of it.
5 Your Honour, I would seek to make the original B/C/S version an
6 exhibit and attach to it the English translation, which I was not going to
7 go into any great detail. The witness has already given evidence about
8 knees and the vertebrae. Merely to draw the Court's attention to the
9 bi-directional X-rays of both knees and then the subsequent analysis of
10 the cervical vertebral column, the thoracic vertebral column and the
11 lumbo-sacral vertebral column.
12 JUDGE PARKER: We appear now to have the B/C/S, in part, on
13 screen. There is certainly in the system the English version, but it's
14 not yet --
15 MR. MOORE: May I just put it this way: May I make an application
16 for it to be made as an exhibit. The witness has already given evidence
17 about damage to knees and all of that.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, you've made mention of that.
19 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
20 JUDGE PARKER: The B/C/S version with the English translation will
21 be received as two parts of the one exhibit.
22 THE REGISTRAR: It will be exhibit number 266, Your Honours.
23 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much. That being the case, those are
24 all the questions that I would seek to ask of this witness.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
1 Mr. Cakalic, Mr. Vasic will now have some questions for you.
2 Thank you.
3 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. Good day to
5 Cross-examination by Mr. Vasic:
6 Q. [Interpretation] Good day, Mr. Cakalic. First of all, I wish to
7 ask you something. Seeing that we both speak the same language, please
8 make a brief pause after my question so that the interpreters can
9 interpret my question and your response. In that way everybody else in
10 the courtroom will be able to follow.
11 First, I wish to clarify some technical matters in connection with
12 your statements and then we'll move on to other matters. You have made a
13 number of statements and you have testified in a number of proceedings, so
14 let us see whether we have all these statements.
15 On the 18th of March, 1992 you made a statement which bears number
16 VU-BOL, meaning hospital, -46. Do you recall that and to whom did you make
17 this statement?
18 A. Can you please tell me to whom it is addressed and I can comment
19 on it, but I don't remember it, I'm sure I made the statement if you have
21 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness be asked to move a little
22 closer to the microphone, please?
23 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. I will have it shown to you, and you can just glance at it
25 briefly. Could the usher would assist.
1 This statement is typed out, but it is stated here that you wrote
2 it in your own hand, so please could you tell us: Have you seen it in
3 this typed version?
4 A. Yes, I made this statement.
5 Q. Thank you, Mr. Cakalic.
6 A. I don't see my signature anywhere though. Oh, yes, I see now. It
7 says that it was handwritten by me. That's right.
8 Q. Thank you. We have to take care not to overlap so as to not
9 create confusion for the interpreters. You can lay this aside now.
10 The next statement is addressed to the medical centre for human
11 rights in Zagreb and bears the date the 18th of March, 1992. Do you
12 remember --
13 A. Can you repeat the name of the institution, please?
14 Q. Of course. It's addressed to the medical centre for human rights
15 in Zagreb. And the date it bears is the 18th of March, 1992. The place
16 is Zagreb.
17 A. If I signed it, then I certainly gave that statement, but I don't
18 remember it now.
19 Q. Could the usher please show it to the witness? And you will see
20 in the last passage it says: "This statement is given of my own free
21 will, Emil Cakalic, born on," and so on and so forth.
22 If you could look at the third -- or, rather, the last page.
23 A. Yes, yes, I accept this statement. It's my statement.
24 Q. Thank you. You can lay it aside now too.
25 On the 16th of May, 1992 you spoke to the representatives of the
1 MUP of Croatia, the Vukovar police administration operations department,
2 and an official note was drawn up by a MUP employee and he signed the
3 statement, not you. Is this correct?
4 A. I do apologise, sir, but I have to see the statement.
5 Q. Certainly. Could the usher assist?
6 Do you see on page 1 your name and on the last the fact that this
7 official note was signed by a MUP employee, not by you? What I wish to
8 know is whether this official note was drawn up after an interview with
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Thank you. You can lay it aside.
12 A. I don't like making unsigned statements, so because I did not sign
13 this statement I do not abide by it.
14 Q. I'm not asking you about the contents right now, just whether this
15 is what it says it is. And then we'll come to the content later.
16 Then on the 6th of March, 1993 you spoke to a lady who was a
17 lieutenant-colonel of the Canadian army, and her name was Kim Carter?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And on the basis of this interview of yours, a transcript was
20 drawn up, which I assume you were shown?
21 A. Yes. Was that 1993? 1992.
22 Q. The 6th of March, 1993.
23 A. The 6th of March, 1993. Yes, and Mr. Snow, Clyde was also
24 present, yes.
25 Q. Thank you. After this you were examined as a witness before the
1 district court in Zagreb on the 10th of June, 1993. Do you remember that?
2 A. Yes. There was a judge from Sarengrad, yes.
3 Q. And this was the case against Slavko Dokmanovic and others?
4 A. Well, in that case, it's not the document I'm thinking of.
5 Q. I will show you this document also; it's not a problem. Could the
6 usher please help?
7 A. I was living in Samobor at the time. I went everywhere and didn't
8 find accommodation.
9 Q. Is this your statement which you made as a witness?
10 A. Yes, yes. Those were things we mentioned here.
11 Q. Yes, you can lay it aside. And then you spoke with the
12 investigators of the OTP in The Hague, and on the 18th of June, 1995 you
13 made your first statement to them. Do you remember that?
14 A. Could you please show it to me?
15 Q. And then you had something to add on the 21st of April, 1996,
16 something to add to that statement. I will show you both these documents.
17 Do you remember?
18 A. Yes, I do.
19 Q. Thank you. After that on the 5th of February, 1998 you testified
20 before this Court in the case against Dokmanovic; is that correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Thank you. After that you testified in another case before this
23 Tribunal, and that was on the 16th of July, 2003 in the case against
24 Slobodan Milosevic?
25 A. Yes, against Slobodan Milosevic.
1 Q. After that -- or I have to say before that, on the 10th of July,
2 1993 you spoke to members of the MUP, the police administration in Kastel
3 and they drew up an official note?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And then the investigating judge of the War Crimes Chamber of the
6 district court in Belgrade asked that you make a statement in Zagreb
7 before a prosecutor from Belgrade and that was in April 2004?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. After that, on the 25th of September, 2004 you testified --
10 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction, October.
11 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Before the war crimes chamber in Belgrade, and there is a
13 transcript in existence?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. I have another statement here made by you, which is signed, and it
16 has a heading, Emil Cakalic, but there is no date, and it doesn't say to
17 whom the statement was made. Would you please take a look at it and tell
18 us, if you can, when you made it and to whom?
19 Do you see on the front page it says "Emil Cakalic," and if you
20 look at the last page there is a signature there?
21 A. Yes. This is my signature, and it is my statement, yes.
22 Q. Would you be kind enough to tell us when you made this statement
23 and to whom you sent it, if you sent it to anyone?
24 A. I made this statement, but I don't know to whom I sent it -- I
25 don't know who asked it of me.
1 Q. Do you remember the date when you made it?
2 A. No, I don't remember that either. I have a poor head for dates.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I don't know if now is a
5 convenient moment.
6 JUDGE PARKER: It is, Mr. Vasic, and we will resume at five
7 minutes to 6.00.
8 --- Recess taken at 5.34 p.m.
9 --- On resuming at 6.02 p.m.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic.
11 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. Mr. Cakalic, I'm going to continue with my questions. You said
13 that you worked at the hospital for a while. Can you tell us whether that
14 was from 1968 to 1978? Am I right?
15 A. Yes, for 10 years. For 10 years.
16 Q. Thank you. After that you began to work at the Vukovar municipal
17 office as a sanitary inspector. I assume that you were sanitation
18 inspector for the entire region of Vukovar, including all the villages
19 that were part of that municipality. Is that correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Thank you. I'm just waiting for the interpretation to be
23 A. Yes, yes, that's fine.
24 Q. We've already heard from other witnesses that the Vukovar area was
25 multi-ethnic and that all the ethnic groups or all the peoples lived
1 harmoniously in this area. Is this correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. In your statements you mention the 2nd of May, 1991 and the events
4 in Borovo Selo. This was the topic of the testimony here by a number of
5 people. What I would like to know is if you, with the Vukovar municipal
6 delegation and also people from the federal government, did you visit
7 Borovo Selo?
8 A. Yes, I did. I was at the head of a team that went there.
9 Q. Thank you. Do you remember after the events in Borovo Selo, were
10 barricades erected in the villages with a majority Serb population as well
11 as those with a majority Croat population facing the Serb villages?
12 A. I know that Pacetin, Bobota, Negoslavci, Trpinja, Vera, some other
13 places. I know that barricades were erected in these villages. I passed
14 through them.
15 Q. Was the situation similar in Borovo Naselje in relation to Trpinja
16 and Borovo Selo?
17 A. I wasn't there, but I heard that there was a barricade erected
18 near the Dom Teknika [phoen], technology hall.
19 Q. Thank you very much.
20 A. Actually, it was a little bit lower down in the direction of
21 Borovo Selo.
22 Q. Since it was part of your duties to carry out sanitation
23 inspections, you were also in contact with the hospital; is that correct?
24 A. Yes, well, I had a special person at the hospital.
25 Q. Do you know that after these events in May that some special
1 measures were introduced at the Vukovar Hospital, that they were given the
2 tasks of preparing the hospital resources for a possible beginning of the
3 conflict and to prepare for dealing with the wounded? Do you have any
4 information about that?
5 A. Well, this is the first time that I'm hearing about it.
6 Q. Thank you. You worked at the Vukovar municipal office in May,
7 June, July, August. What I would like to know is what were the relations
8 between the Vukovar authorities in the municipal assembly at the time?
9 A. Well, I wasn't a deputy in the municipal assembly, so I couldn't
10 really tell you about that. But I could tell you what the relations were
11 amongst us as colleagues.
12 Q. Yes, go ahead, please.
13 A. Serbian people felt threatened and you know from where -- from
15 Q. Go ahead, tell us.
16 A. From July when a gentleman came to Vukovar from Sibenik. I think
17 you know who I mean. His last name evades me at the moment. Dr. --
18 Dr. ...
19 Q. Was the gentleman employed at the hospital?
20 A. Yes, he work the at the Sibenik hospital. He was a
22 Q. Was he a Croat or a Serb?
23 A. He was a Serb.
24 Q. Was it Dr. Raskovic?
25 A. Yes, Dr. Raskovic, I remember now. In July Dr. Raskovic came to
1 Vukovar, and this was something that pleased many Serbs. I think he made
2 a mistake in coming there because he incited the Serb people in Vukovar to
3 rebellion, and this is why what happened in Vukovar happened.
4 As I said, I had a weekend house or a little holiday house in a
5 resort, and I could hear everything from across the Vuka. I could hear
6 everything that they were saying from the other side of the Vuka because
7 the microphones were so powerful. There was a rally of Serbs. I
8 practically attended this rally. I wasn't there physically, but I could
9 hear everything that was going on. But if you were to ask me exactly what
10 was happening, I could no longer tell you anything about it, but you know
11 very well what was happening.
12 Q. I'm not going to ask you about that. What I would like to ask you
13 is the following: You said that the Serbs felt threatened from July.
14 What was the specific reason for that; can you tell us?
15 A. I didn't say that the Serbs were in danger from July.
16 Q. Well, you said they felt endangered.
17 A. Yes, that is a different thing. They felt threatened. I assume,
18 I don't know, but I assume when Dr. Raskovic left they felt as if they had
19 been put on the spot. These were my colleagues, so instead of continuing
20 to socialise -- well, if you can imagine, if any of my colleagues had come
21 to Vukovar and talked against the Serbs, I would be upset. I would be
22 angry. Why? Because we were people who had more or less the same
23 training, went to the same schools, had the same hobbies, went fishing
24 together. So then after a certain amount of time it's not proper to do
25 things like that.
1 Q. Thank you very much. Can you please tell us whether from June
2 onwards any measures or activities were undertaken in Vukovar which were
3 not usual or regular activities? For example, in the domain of civilian
4 protection and the people's defence department?
5 A. The people's defence department operated in accordance with its
6 principles and tasks and regulations. I assume everything was all right.
7 It was working. If something was not working, then that's not all right.
8 Can you please put a direct question to me?
9 Q. Is it true on the 15th of June, 1991 you joined some activities by
10 the then organisation of the defence of Vukovar which later grew into the
11 Vukovar army?
12 A. Yes, I did. And I did this on a voluntary basis because -- I have
13 to tell you. Why are you going to listen to me?
14 Q. Yes, very well.
15 A. Because I saw that some things vis-a-vis hygiene were not
16 functioning, food was being made for a school in a yard, and things like
17 that. So I volunteered to oversee these duties. I was told to do these
18 jobs and I did them well. I organised a central point where all the food
19 supplies were made and issued.
20 Q. Could you please explain to us what sort of a system this was,
21 this food organisation supply system, how did that work?
22 A. The main centre was the worker's hall. It's in the centre of
23 town. There's a large kitchen there. I was overseeing the work there,
24 and I can say that Serbs, Croats, and some others were all working there.
25 They worked excellently, and they worked very well.
1 The husband and wife who were Serbs never prompted me to make any
2 kind of remarks about their work. They even worked better than the
3 others, but actually if all of the others heard me saying that they worked
4 better, they might be upset because they all worked very well.
5 Q. Well, I'm sure they won't be angry. In any case, how was the food
6 distributed from this workers' hall, and in that period, July, August and
7 September, who was it issued to?
8 A. We did it for as long as we could, until a part of the workers'
9 hall was destroyed. That's where food for the Croatian army was prepared
10 in special Thermos containers. They were quite large. I requested that
11 these vessels be used because that was the only way that the flask was
12 opened only when they were going to eat. And they all had to eat
13 together. It shouldn't have been opened one by one, that was bad, and it
14 could pose some danger, so I always looked at things from the point of
15 view of health. This food was distributed by the army, taken to certain
16 places in vehicles.
17 Q. Thank you. Who controlled the food quality and who took care that
18 this food supply system was protected from sabotage?
19 A. All of those who tried the food also -- all those who prepared the
20 food tasted it, so that's how it was done. Food was also prepared at the
21 hotel Vukovar for the police and also for a number of other employees.
22 Q. Are we talking about the Dunav Hotel?
23 A. Yes, that is correct.
24 Q. Thank you very much. You've said that you volunteered in June
25 1991. Can you tell us who did you go to to volunteer, who assigned you
1 for this duty?
2 A. I said that I went to the defence department, to the special
3 services department, which was a part of that. It was a gentleman who, in
4 the meantime, has died. I went to him, and I said I would like to
5 volunteer for the Croatian army in order to prepare and control the food,
6 drinking water and all the other activities that had to do with this kind
7 of work. Did your inspectors also report in the same way? You don't
9 Q. Unfortunately, I don't know. Can you please tell us whether at
10 the time Tomislav Mercep was already at the head of the defence
12 A. Yes, he was.
13 Q. At the time when you were given this assignment in June was he
14 at -- in charge of preparations for the defence of Vukovar? And if not,
15 do you know who it was?
16 A. All of those working at the secretariat were working on this.
17 Q. At the time under a decision of the Croatian government was the
18 Vukovar municipal assembly dismissed and was Mr. Marin Vidic appointed in
19 that function?
20 A. The assembly was not working when Mr. Dokmanovic disappeared, when
21 he left the area. I don't know where he went. I think he crossed the
22 Danube to go to the other side or was living in Bobota; I don't know. But
23 in any case, yes. What I said before is true.
24 Q. What I would like to know is that in June was the Crisis Staff of
25 the Vukovar municipality already formed at that time?
1 A. I don't know if this was in July or later. I really am not able
2 to say.
3 Q. Thank you. Of course we will not insist on dates if you cannot
4 recall them.
5 Do you know -- how are you feeling? If you are having any
6 problems, please let us know.
7 Do you know who comprised the Vukovar municipality Crisis Staff?
8 A. I don't know. I wouldn't like to guess. I don't know.
9 Q. You didn't attend the Crisis Staff meetings?
10 A. No. I was just doing my job, what I knew.
11 Q. Did you have frequent contacts with Mr. Marin Vidic during July
12 and August?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. I assume that the contacts had to do with your work that you had
15 started doing in June. What I would like to know is if you knew what the
16 duties were of Mr. Vidic during those two months, July and August?
17 A. He was entrusted by the Croatian government for the area of
18 Vukovar. So he was the commissioner of the government of Croatia for the
19 Vukovar area.
20 Q. Was he performing only the duties that he would be performing as
21 president of the municipality regularly, or was he doing something that
22 had to do with the activities of the Crisis Staff in making preparations
23 for the defence of Vukovar?
24 A. He was part of the Crisis Staff. We went to Borovo Naselje
25 together. We lived through rocket explosions, shelling, grenade
1 explosions. It was a clearing, cleared area outside of Vukovar, but thank
2 God we survived. We were taken there by a driver. He had to go back to
3 lunch, and he also had to take some fuel somewhere. Unfortunately, he was
4 hit by a shell and he was killed.
5 Q. Thank you. You mentioned Mr. Mercep?
6 A. No, you mentioned Mr. Mercep.
7 Q. Yes, that is correct. I mentioned him. As far as I know, he also
8 wasn't a professional soldiers. He wasn't a soldier by profession?
9 A. No, he was a construction engineer, civil construction engineer,
10 and that's what he is to this day.
11 Q. Are you aware that he ran the Vukovar defence until Mr. Dedakovic
12 came, who was a professional soldier, and this was sometime in August
14 A. Yes, that is correct.
15 Q. Thank you very much. I assume that as were you carrying out your
16 duties already from August onwards, you had contacts not only with
17 Mr. Marin Vidic, Bili, but also with the Vukovar defence command since you
18 were in charge of checking the food, which was later distributed to the
19 army or to the soldiers; that is correct?
20 A. Yes, that is correct.
21 Q. Do you recall how often you went to the Vukovar defence staff and
22 where was it?
23 A. It was opposite from the municipal billing in a side street. Do
24 you know where that is?
25 Q. Yes.
1 A. You asked me whether I went to the command. No, I had
2 instructions from my commander to do such and such a thing and so on, and
3 then when Mr. Dedakovic came, he called me to see him. We spoke outside
4 in the yard, and he said to me, "Inspector, you need to do these things,
5 such and such things, such and such a thing." And I told him, "Well, I've
6 already been doing that for a while." And that's how these contacts
7 actually ended.
8 Q. I understand that you were actually just performing your
9 professional duties, so there was no need to actually discuss that in
11 A. Yes, that is correct.
12 Q. Did you have the same relationship after Mr. Dedakovic left
13 Vukovar and was succeeded by Mr. Borkovic?
14 A. Yes, I knew Branko. But this was already well into the conflict,
15 and I don't know, once I was at the municipal building, there was
16 shelling, I couldn't leave, so I spent the night there. I think Branko
17 was there also. We spoke but very briefly.
18 Q. Since you were monitoring the food quality, could you please tell
19 us something about the quantities of food and how many soldiers were
20 receiving this food in August 1991?
21 A. I don't know how many soldiers there were, but I ordered that the
22 food that was not eaten by the soldiers had to be given to the citizens.
23 Q. I assume that the food was distributed in the shelters in Vukovar?
24 A. I ordered that no food should be wasted. It was wartime. If the
25 soldiers did not take all the food, it had to be given to whoever was
2 Q. Thank you. You've said that you went to the hospital ex officio
3 and that there was a contact person there. When you went to the hospital,
4 did you see wounded JNA soldiers there who were imprisoned and kept under
6 A. No, I didn't see them. I did see members of the ZNG who had been
7 killed, however. But this is the first time I've heard about what you're
9 Q. So you didn't know there were JNA hospitals [as interpreted] In
10 the hospital?
11 A. Oh, yes, I do know that they were taken prisoner and that they
12 were patients in the hospital. And on the day when we were arrested and
13 taken away on that day they were sent somewhere. I don't know where. I
14 think they were sent back to Sremska Mitrovica. No, it was a lieutenant
15 who was sent back to Sremska Mitrovica. I do know that they were given
16 back, but I never found out where they actually went.
17 Q. Thank you very much. Just a correction of the transcript.
18 Page 66, line 22. My question was: You didn't know that there were JNA
19 soldiers in the hospital, and here it says there were JNA hospitals. It's
20 an error in the transcript. Thank you.
21 A. Has that got to do with me? No?
22 Q. No, no, it has nothing to do with you. What I said was not
23 properly interpreted.
24 Tell me, where were you when you were not touring the terrain?
25 A. At home. I went to work for as long as I was able. In July,
1 that's when I did this work, but afterwards, when one could no longer go
2 anywhere, I was ordered to stay at home and to report, if needed.
3 Q. Thank you. Your house was in the immediate vicinity of the
5 A. It was not my house; it was an apartment block. There were three
6 buildings. They all looked the same. They were only different colours.
7 Q. Yes, you did tell us that. What I want to know is how far from
8 the hospital was your flat or how far from the municipal building?
9 A. As the crow flies or the normal route?
10 Q. Well, the route you used.
11 A. Well, I took a shortcut and I used the long way as well. As the
12 crow flies, about 400 metres. But that's approximate. I never measured
13 it, so I can't really tell you the precise number.
14 Q. Thank you. Now, tell me, when you were carrying out your
15 assignments, there were ZNG units, were there, and you were a member
16 because you were doing this job?
17 A. Yes, they were in the process of being organised.
18 Q. Apart from the tasks you carried out in quality control --
19 A. Yes, that's my profession.
20 Q. -- Did you do any other work that had to do with civilian
22 A. Yes, for the Red Cross. I was the president of the municipal
23 Red Cross committee of Vukovar. I had been for about 10 years. I was a
24 member of other humanitarian organisations as well. I have received many
25 awards for that work, but when I came back to Vukovar, I didn't find a
1 single one of them. Somebody else is now displaying these.
2 Q. I assume that you were heading the Karitas [phoen] and the
3 Red Cross. Who appointed you to that duty and when did you stop holding
4 this post?
5 A. I was elected by the assembly of the Red Cross which reappointed
6 me. And could you repeat the second part of your question, please?
7 Q. In the summer and autumn of 1991, were you the president of the
8 Red Cross branch in Vukovar and until when?
9 A. Well, for as long as I was able. To, and when I left the camp we
10 founded the Red Cross in exile in Zagreb, and I was again elected
12 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us who, besides you, was in the
13 presidency of the Red Cross branch in Vukovar at the relevant time,
14 August, September, October, November 1991?
15 A. The secretary, her husband, Slobodan Maricic -- it fell apart, you
16 know. As the war progressed, the society fell apart. The secretary left
17 the Red Cross and she went off somewhere, so that I appointed a lady to be
18 the secretary of the Red Cross, and the assembly could no longer meet, but
19 as the president I had the right to appoint her, and she did a good job.
20 She did a good job, for all the inhabitants of Vukovar.
21 Q. Thank you. Do you remember the name of this lady?
22 A. Zeljka Zgonjanin.
23 Q. Thank you. Tell me, you said that you volunteered to join, and
24 that at that time the defenders of the town could join up voluntarily.
25 When was their general mobilisation in Vukovar?
1 A. I was at home and some lads arrived and they asked me how old I
2 was. And I said why, and they said, "So we can mobilise you." This was a
3 few days before Vukovar fell, when they went from the houses collecting
5 Q. Were they from the municipal Crisis Staff or from the defence
7 A. That was the first time I had seen those lads, when they came to
8 my door.
9 Q. So you don't know?
10 A. No, I don't know.
11 Q. Thank you. Tell me, in Vukovar were there volunteers from other
12 parts of Croatia? Are you aware of that?
13 A. Yes, there were.
14 Q. Do you remember from what places to the best of your recollection?
15 A. Zagreb, Sisak, Medjimurje. There were very many volunteers in
16 Vukovar. It wasn't only people from Vukovar who defended Vukovar.
17 Q. Thank you. Tell me, apart from the volunteers who came to defend
18 Vukovar, certain MUP units also arrived from other towns of Croatia. Are
19 you aware of that?
20 A. Well, you see, not a single formation that arrived was ever
21 designated as coming from this or that place. They were always called the
22 defenders of Vukovar.
23 Q. But you knew they were not natives of Vukovar because you didn't
24 know them?
25 A. I didn't know everybody from Vukovar. Although I moved around a
1 lot, I didn't know everyone. There were 20.000 workers in Borovo. Who
2 could know them all?
3 Q. Thank you. Do you know whether certain parties, such as the
4 Croatian Party of Rights sent their members in units of the Croatian
5 defence forces to defend Vukovar?
6 A. Yes, there were a few of those. But they quickly vanished from
7 there. I don't know whether they were killed, but there were very few of
9 Q. Thank you very much. When answering my learned friend's questions
10 you said that you carried out your tasks on the ground and spent the rest
11 of the time at home until the 17th or 18th -- until the 17th of November,
12 1991. But I would like to know when on the 17th of November you left your
13 flat and went to the hospital, did you already know that the Vukovar
14 Hospital was about to be evacuated by ships on the Danube to Hungary?
15 A. I heard about that in the hospital. I left my flat on the 17th,
16 and two soldiers were going towards the entrance, and I said, "Lads, where
17 are you off to?" And then we had a chat and we parted ways. They were
18 children, you know. Children. I think you know why I'm saying that.
19 Q. Are you talking about conscripts who could not be older than 19?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. It's not in the transcript. There was a law that you had to go to
22 the army when you were 18?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Thank you very much. What did you hear in the hospital and from
25 whom concerning this evacuation which was to take place by the Danube?
1 A. I only heard rumours. Somebody said there will be an evacuation,
2 but it didn't happen. Somebody said it, but there were several of us in a
3 room, and I don't know who said it.
4 Q. But that wasn't the reason you went to the hospital?
5 A. No, it wasn't. I felt that this was a humanitarian institution
6 which should not be touched, although it had been touched. You know that
7 a 200-kilogram shell landed between somebody's legs.
8 Q. Yes, we've heard that.
9 A. Yes, it's true. And he's still alive. I'm speaking of that
11 Q. And we were told that he was a Serb by ethnicity?
12 A. Well, I don't know what he was by ethnicity. I really have no
14 Q. Thank you. On your arrival in the hospital, did you have to
15 report your arrival to the hospital Crisis Staff?
16 A. Well, I did report. Dr. Vesna Bosanac was the director of the
17 hospital, and she had to know who was coming into the hospital. She had
18 to see. I reported.
19 Q. You told us that at first your wife could not get into the
20 hospital. Did I understand you correctly that the civilians who had
21 gathered there could get into the hospital yard, but not the hospital
23 A. Yes. However, I intervened. I told her to wait outside and she
25 Q. Thank you. Can you tell me, when you arrived in the hospital and
1 reached the room, the X-ray department --
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. -- was Mr. Guncevic already there and the other gentlemen you have
5 A. Guncevic came after I did.
6 Q. Did you know Dr. Ivankovic at the time, who worked in the
8 A. Yes, I did. And his son too.
9 Q. You knew him and his son from before the outbreak of the conflict?
10 A. Yes, I did. Because I used to work in the hospital. I met his
11 son at Ovcara.
12 Q. Thank you. His son's name is Goran?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Tell me, in view of the fact that you were a member of the
15 Red Cross, the president of the --
16 A. I was a volunteer. And it was the municipal organisation and the
17 association of municipalities of Slavonia and Baranja. I was president of
18 that, too, for a while.
19 Q. Do you know that in October of 1991 there was a convoy from
20 Vukovar Hospital and that some wounded were sent in the direction of
21 Vinkovac and then on to Zagreb? This was on the 17th of October, 1991.
22 Do you know anything about that?
23 A. I think they were supposed to go, but then they didn't manage to
24 get through. However, I don't remember. I'm not sure. I don't think
25 they managed to get through.
1 Q. I don't want to confuse you, but according to what we've heard
2 from witnesses, there were two convoys; one on the 13th of October, which
3 didn't get through from the barracks to the hospital because of the
5 A. Yes, now you've jogged my memory.
6 Q. And the other one was on the 17th of October, which did go to
7 Zagreb with a certain number of wounded?
8 A. Oh, yes, yes, I remember now. Yes. That's right.
9 Q. Did you know how medical supplies were distributed for the
10 hospital or did you not deal with that?
11 A. No, it was other services that dealt with that, not me. But let
12 me tell you, I got chlorine from the hospital pharmacy.
13 Q. Well, I was just about to ask you that. I was going to ask you
14 where you got the chemicals indispensable for your activity?
15 A. Well, I got those materials from that pharmacy and other
17 Q. Do you recall, were medicines and other chemicals brought into
18 Vukovar by helicopters for a while which landed in the Sloga stadium close
19 to your flat?
20 A. Well, I heard those stories, but I never saw it myself.
21 Q. Thank you. You were in charge of your tasks in Vukovar but not in
22 Borovo Naselje?
23 A. I was in Borovo Naselje, together with Vidic. Vidic and I went
24 there together to solve some problems. And after that I didn't go to
25 Borovo Naselje until the end of the war.
1 Q. But you were not tasked with that area?
2 A. No, no, it was others who were. It was very difficult to get
3 there, you know. I think that this happened sometime in early November
4 and there was shooting all over the place. We were lucky that our car was
5 not hit by a single shell.
6 Q. Can you please tell me if a part of the food prepared in these
7 kitchens, was it delivered to the castle of Count Eltz? Were there any
8 units there that received food from there? Do you know anything about
10 A. I didn't go there. I had my own routes that I covered for as long
11 as I could. I didn't go to the castle. It was exposed to a lot of
12 shelling, heavy shelling.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to allow my
15 learned friend Mr. Moore the 15 minutes that he had asked for to discuss
16 some issues, and then I will continue my cross-examination tomorrow, if
17 you think that that is acceptable.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Is it 15 minutes, Mr. Moore?
19 MR. MOORE: No. I would have thought five minutes would see us
21 JUDGE PARKER: Five minutes. What about another five minutes or
22 so, Mr. Vasic, and then we will call it an interim day.
23 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I just didn't
24 want to think that -- I didn't want to allow my -- I didn't want my
25 learned friend to think that I was not allowing enough time for him to
1 deal with what he wanted to deal with. Anyway, thank you.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Vasic.
3 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Before the 17th of November when you went to the hospital, did you
5 see members of the ZNG in front of the hospital guarding the yard and the
7 A. No, but I did see dead ones. I said that before.
8 Q. You said that there were plenty of dead in front of the hospital.
9 A. In the hospital compound.
10 Q. And the reason for that is that for a time it was impossible to
11 bury the dead at a certain point in time?
12 A. Yes, that is correct. We had problems with that in Vukovar. I
13 came to the cemetery where people of all ethnic groups were buried, and as
14 soon as they saw that someone else is there, they started shooting. I
15 even saw a person who was living in a four-storey house would be giving
16 the signal when they should open fire.
17 Q. Thank you. And you said that you didn't see any security staff of
18 the hospital. Were there any people who were guarding the hospital? That
19 would be normal, wouldn't it?
20 A. Yes, it would be, but I didn't really enter the hospital so often.
21 There was a team there that was performing certain duties. I was at the
22 hospital only on one occasion, and that was two days before it was
23 captured. That's when I was there. I could see everything was
24 functioning there, everything was all right. A colleague of mine was
25 working there. He was also a sanitation inspector, so he was the one who
1 took up these duties there.
2 Q. When you went to the municipal building, or rather to that part
3 where the Crisis Staff was, to these meetings or consultations with
4 Mr. Vidic, you had to pass by the MUP, the Vukovar MUP?
5 A. Well, I went for one conversation with Mr. Vidic. So I went to
6 see him on one occasion. And then we went to Borovo.
7 Q. Thank you. Can you please tell us whether of your family it was
8 just you and your wife who came to the hospital, or did anyone else from
9 your family also go there?
10 A. No, it was just the two of us.
11 Q. Once you came to the hospital did you see Mr. Dragutin Berghofer
12 there whom you mentioned earlier?
13 A. Yes, and we went to Ovcara together from the hospital.
14 Q. Did you see any ZNG members at the hospital whom you knew, if you
15 can remember. If not --
16 A. Only those who brought in the sick had access to the hospital, and
17 the hospital staff had access. Until the 17th, approximately. There was
18 a person at the entrance who was posted at the entrance; I don't know
19 anything much about that. Dr. Bosanac was the director at the hospital,
20 so this was her job. I never interfered in anyone else's work.
21 Q. Thank you. After the 17th when you came to that building, did you
22 see any people whom you knew were members of the ZNG, but who were no
23 longer in uniform, but were in civilian clothes or white coats or anything
24 like that? Did you see people like that or not?
25 A. Well, there were a lot of people in the hospital. They were all
1 looking for shelter, so it was either a shelter or the hospital. The
2 shelters were so packed. The hospital also was very crowded.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, should we stop now and
5 deal with the questions by my learned friend?
6 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Vasic.
7 Sir, the Chamber is about to adjourn for the day, and we'll
8 continue tomorrow commencing at 2.15 in the afternoon. We have a
9 procedural matter or two to deal with now, but rather than keep you there,
10 it will be, I think, preferable for you to be able to leave now, and if
11 you could return in time for your evidence to continue at 2.15 tomorrow.
12 The court officer will assist you.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
14 [The witness stands down]
15 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Moore.
16 MR. MOORE: Your Honour, it's really three small matters.
17 Firstly, in respect of the agreed facts, the facts have been agreed on all
18 matters with one exception. That relates to the suggestion that the
19 Prosecution say can be demonstrated on documents, that the grave was
20 located, I think, on the 18th of October, 1992. I think there is only one
21 of my learned friends who may object to that. I think it is my learned
22 friend Mr. Borovic. I hope he can agree it, because if not I'm going to
23 have to ask to call additional witnesses for that matter. And I cannot,
24 for the life of me think that it goes to any issue that needs to be
25 determined by this Tribunal. I don't say it by way of criticism, but
1 perhaps if we can just clarify it now, I would be very grateful. That is
2 the first matter.
3 The second matter is as a result of the unfortunate death of
4 Mr. Milosevic, we of course have been keeping afternoon court invariably
5 four days out of five. I know my learned friends and myself would prefer
6 to have morning sessions, if at all possible, and we would respectfully
7 ask the Court if that could be considered sooner rather than later, but I
8 know that there are other considerations to come into play. And I know
9 that Your Honour in particular has certain obligations as a result of that
11 The third matter is, as a result of the Milosevic trial, if I may
12 use that phrase, not being effective, I think Mr. Borovic and myself
13 agreed that if the Court were minded, we would be prepared with of course
14 the others, to have double sessions for one or two weeks to make up the
15 time. And for our part, we have witnesses that we can call. If that was
16 to be done, it would affect our scheduling, because if we are running from
17 9.00 until 7.00, clearly we have to bring in witnesses well in advance.
18 And I really just ask the Court to consider that. I know Mr. Borovic was
19 keen for that particular course.
20 Those are the three matters that I would wish to raise.
21 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Moore.
22 Mr. Borovic, on the agreed fact, is there any clarification you
23 can give at this point?
24 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I am
25 hearing about this problem for the first time. We had discussed it, my
1 learned friend and I, so -- we actually did not discuss it. This is the
2 first time that I'm hearing of it. So I do not wish to give any comments
3 about that until I discuss that with my colleagues.
4 As far as the schedule is concerned, I am all for completing this
5 trial as soon as possible, so whatever we can do to facilitate that, I
6 would be very grateful.
7 Thank you.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Could you, Mr. Borovic and Mr. Moore, ensure that
9 attention is given to the question of the agreed fact between you in the
10 hope that it can be resolved during this week? Thank you.
11 Thank you, Mr. Borovic.
12 As will be apparent -- Mr. Vasic.
13 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
14 The first item as far as that's concerned, you've already
15 instructed what the sides are to do.
16 Regarding the change of schedule to the morning, the Defence teams
17 are in favour of that because it's easier to work in the morning, if
19 As far as the third matter is concerned, what I would like to tell
20 the Trial Chamber is a problem that my client has, and then it becomes my
21 problem too regarding this proposal. You know that my client had two
22 heart surgeries before he surrendered voluntarily to the Tribunal, and
23 this pace of trial continuously for the past two months, five days a week,
24 is quite intense for him, so he has complained to me recently of fatigue
25 and the difficulties he has following the proceedings in the courtroom.
1 In such circumstances, working double shifts would create additional
2 problems for him. But I would like for the Trial Chamber to hear my
3 client's opinion of this whole matter so that you would hear it firsthand.
4 Thank you very much.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic, thank you. I won't call on Mr. Lukic at
6 the moment, not out of rudeness, but to say a few words which may assist
7 all counsel. Because of the unexpected circumstances, it clearly will be
8 possible for there to be some rearrangement of the listings of the
9 existing trials that are presently being conducted. That will be
10 something that will be subject to adjustment and review as other trial or
11 trials are brought on stream in place of the trial that has terminated
12 unexpectedly and as other decisions are given. Clearly there is need for
13 the President to reconsider a number of factors about the future trial
14 listings and the disposition of judges. It is therefore not appropriate
15 immediately to take steps which will depend for their effectiveness upon
16 matters that have to be considered by the President.
17 Certainly where there are morning courts available, as has been
18 indicated by the Chamber, it too is human, and it too feels the strain of
19 late evening sittings. There are, however, still at the moment only two
20 courtrooms available, and there are a number of other factors, including
21 already committed times which will tie up members of the Chamber during
22 this week because of other commitments, and in my case, extending into
23 next week. So that just because there is a court available in the
24 morning, it doesn't mean that the Chamber is free to sit then.
25 The Chamber has, in the past, sat for extended periods in a day.
1 Two or three members of the Chamber have sat on occasions from 7.00 until
2 9.00 at night; on one case in the morning and another in the afternoon.
3 It is the experience of the judges, and it is the experience of other
4 Chambers that to do that other than on one day for some exceptional reason
5 produces undesirable strain on counsel, on Judges, on accused, and on
6 witnesses, and especially on witnesses who are not at all used to this
7 sort of regime. It was the experience of this Chamber that sitting any
8 longer than from 10.00 to about 4.30 or a little later, with a full lunch
9 break, for more than two or three days, produced too great a strain. It
10 also has long-term staffing problems with interpreters, security personnel
11 and the like.
12 Therefore, while we will certainly consider, as soon as our
13 conflicting commitments are resolved, the possibility if there are
14 courtrooms available, of starting at a slightly later time and sitting
15 through into the afternoon. It would be quite undesirable, and I think
16 harmful for a number of reasons, including what Mr. Vasic has mentioned,
17 to contemplate sitting day after day from 9.00 in the morning until 7.00
18 at night.
19 As soon as some of the uncertainties are resolved, I hope that
20 there can be some revision of our present trial schedule. But the factors
21 that I've mentioned will be taken into account and will guide what we do.
22 Thank you. We will now adjourn and resume at 2.15 tomorrow.
23 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.03 p.m.,
24 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 14th day of March,
25 2006, at 2.15 p.m.