1 Monday, 10 September 2001
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.37 a.m.
5 JUDGE LIU: Call the case, please.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. This is the case number,
7 IT-98-34-T, the Prosecutor versus Naletilic and Martinovic.
8 JUDGE LIU: Can we have the appearances for the Prosecution?
9 MR. SCOTT: Good morning, Your Honours. Kenneth Scott for the
10 Office of the Prosecutor. With me are Mr. Douglas Stringer, Mr. Vassily
11 Poriouvaev, Mr. Roeland Bos, and our case manager is Kimberly Fleming.
12 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. For Defence?
13 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. I'm
14 Kresimir Krsnik for Mr. Naletilic, and I have Mr. Christopher Meek from
15 the Bar Association of Kansas, United States, and legal assistant, Nika
16 Pinter, lawyer from Zagreb, the Bar Association of Croatia. Thank you.
17 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. I'm
18 lawyer Branko Seric from Zagreb, a member of the Bar Association of
19 Croatia, and I'm chief counsel for the defendant Vinko Martinovic. With
20 me is co-counsel Vinko Martinovic [as interpreted], lawyer member of the
21 Bar Association of Croatia.
22 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for His Honour, please.
24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
25 Mr. Naletilic, can you hear the proceedings in a language which
1 you understand? Microphone.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone is not switched on for the accused.
3 THE ACCUSED NALETILIC: [Interpretation] Yes, I can, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. I will not ask you the same
5 question every morning, but if there is any problem that you have, please
6 do not hesitate to let us know.
7 How about your health?
8 THE ACCUSED NALETILIC: [Interpretation] Very well.
9 THE INTERPRETER: The microphone of the accused is not --
10 THE ACCUSED NALETILIC: [Interpretation] I'm quite all right for
11 the time being. Thank you.
12 JUDGE LIU: Please take care of yourself, especially at the time
13 of changing of the season at this moment. If you have any problems,
14 please do not hesitate to let us know.
15 THE ACCUSED NALETILIC: [Interpretation] My only problem is the
16 length of the session. It will be much easier for me if the proceedings
17 lasted about half as long as envisaged.
18 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. You may sit down, please.
19 Mr. Martinovic, can you hear the proceedings in a language which
20 you understand?
21 THE ACCUSED MARTINOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. I will not ask you the same question each
23 morning, but if there is any problem that you have, please do not hesitate
24 to let us know. You may sit down, please.
25 Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. By order of the President of
1 the Tribunal, dated September 7th, 2001, this Trial Chamber is composed of
2 three Judges. Sitting on my right is Honourable Judge Maureen Clark from
3 Ireland. Sitting on my left is Honourable Judge Fatoumata Diarra from
4 Mali. My name is Daqun Liu, the Presiding Judge in this case. I used to
5 be in the Trial Chamber II, sitting with Judge Hunt and Judge Mumba in
6 the Krnojelac case.
7 This Trial Chamber would like to thank Pre-Trial Judge, Judge
8 Wald, for her invaluable contribution to the smooth administration of this
9 case. We would also like to thank Mr. Olivier Fourmy for conducting the
10 depositions and transmitting the record therefore to the Trial Chamber.
11 JUDGE LIU: Before the floor is given to the Prosecution for their
12 opening statement, the Trial Chamber would like to address the parties
13 with regard to some administrative issues of general importance of this
14 trial. We would like to remind both parties that the administration of
15 justice can only be carried out effectively and fairly when both parties
16 to the proceeding undertake to fully cooperate with the Tribunal, and they
17 efficiently carry out instructions given by this Trial Chamber. It is
18 hoped during the forthcoming trial all parties will work together to
19 ensure the efficient and the convivial progression of this case.
20 In December 2000, the Pre-Trial Judge indicated that there would
21 be a ten-week time period set for each side. The Trial Chamber is in full
22 agreement with this time schedule and call upon the parties to adhere to
23 it. With regard to the testimony of witnesses, the Trial Chamber wishes
24 to assure the parties that it will not accept any disrespectable
25 questioning by any of the parties. This applies equally to Prosecution
1 and the Defence witnesses.
2 We have to bear in mind this is an International Tribunal which,
3 at least, means whatever you said will be translated simultaneously into
4 the other two languages. In our view, it is not important of how you
5 perform in this courtroom. What is more important is to let us to
6 understand what you are talking about and to have every word you said
7 correctly recorded in the transcript. So do make a pause after each
8 question and answer during the examination of witnesses or after a
9 paragraph, when you are making a long statement.
10 This Trial Chamber expects the parties to brief their respective
11 witnesses accordingly at the beginning of their testimony.
12 Now, we have some outstanding motions concerning the admission of
13 transcripts and the statements into evidence. At this moment, these
14 issues are under consideration by the Trial Chamber, and decisions will be
15 made with regard to all those related matters. As for the Defence motion
16 under Rule 92(B) dated August 2nd, 2001, concerning the written statements
17 of two witnesses, the Trial Chamber noted that the Prosecution has not
18 responded to it.
19 Are you intending to respond to this motion, Mr. Scott?
20 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour. We will review it further and make
21 a response.
22 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
23 The Trial Chamber will decide on the outstanding motions.
24 Are you ready to proceed with opening statements, in accordance
25 with Rule 84, Mr. Scott?
1 MR. SCOTT: The Prosecution is ready to proceed.
2 JUDGE LIU: Please proceed.
3 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, wait a minute.
4 Please receive my apologies, Your Honours; however, the Defence
5 deems it necessary to inform the Trial Chamber about some facts which have
6 been -- 15 days ago, likewise, to inform the Chamber about the position of
7 the Defence regarding the main hearing today.
8 In other words, Your Honours, you have informed us very
9 exhaustively with regards to the Defence suggestions which arrived in
10 August; however, we also submitted another motion to postpone the hearing
11 based on the decision of the Chamber following our first motion, and we
12 consider it of key importance.
13 We have also moved for an additional explanation of the ex parte
14 session. We have also moved for an inside visit of the Chamber; that is,
15 to travel to Bosnia-Herzegovina and visit the area that will be discussed
16 here for quite some time. The Defence believes that that motion and the
17 additional motion for the deferral of the hearing are very important,
18 especially since you are the first ones to start the trial without a
19 Pre-Trial Conference which we were duty bound to hold pursuant to the
20 Statute of the Tribunal. Had we had the Pre-Trial Conference, I would not
21 be saying what I am saying today in presenting the positions of the
22 Defence; and at that conference, we would have resolved all the matters in
24 Why I say all this, Your Honours, because the Defence try not to
25 violate the Article 1 of the Statute of the fair and expeditious trial at
1 which, though, the Defence is concerned that the Article might be violated
2 if we started the proceedings today, because a few days ago, the Defence
3 received - and you can see it here - over 1.000 documents, and it was only
4 a few days ago, which we have to study. We have to be ready; we have to
5 be prepared in order to participate in the examination of witnesses.
6 Likewise, a few days ago, Your Honours, the Defence received the
7 definitive list of witnesses. And it is only for the past few days that
8 we have finally learned which witnesses the Prosecution intended to call.
9 For all these reasons, the Defence does not feel fully prepared to
10 participate in the trial on an equitable footing because it has not had
11 enough time to -- for adequate preparation.
12 And as serious advocates, we cannot permit ourselves to engage in
13 hearing and deliberations before this august World Court without having
14 studied all this material which was disclosed to us only a couple of days
15 before. The Defence wishes to point out that before other Courts, tactics
16 or ruses of any one party may be allowed. Perhaps, something like that is
17 permissible before the lesser Courts, and it is permitted, but not before
18 this Court. And especially, one cannot place the Defence at such a
19 disadvantageous position.
20 Moreover, Your Honours, my learned friends have a huge machinery
21 to support them, and the Defence does not have that. They have at their
22 disposal an unlimited number of investigators. As for the multinational
23 forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina, all the official bodies in both Croatia and
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina and, if you like, the media, too. And we, you see,
25 have to parry, and we are only three -- there is four of us, and we have
1 to do it all by ourselves, Your Honours.
2 One thousand times -- binders are still to be gone through by the
3 Defence. We have gone through a thousand, and we have to go through a
4 another few thousand of similar binders which are in the State archives of
5 Croatia alone. The archive of the Minister of Defence, we may not make it
6 there. The Minister of Foreign Affairs never had time to pass the load.
7 The archives of the duration of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, if
8 anything, we still have not received a response from the relevant
9 authorities whether we would have access to this documentation or not.
10 If we are to enjoy an equal status before this Court, we have to
11 go through all this. We must learn every single fact so as to take part
12 in examination or, rather, know what the Prosecution is talking about.
13 That is, today, here, the Prosecutor; tomorrow, the witnesses will be
14 examined -- we haven't slept for the past three days -- to at least leaf
15 through all these documents to see what they are all about. Because
16 otherwise, how do you expect us to parry? And is that fair and
17 well-balanced position?
18 And to conclude, I really do not know, and I am asking this on the
19 record, why all of this insistence to start a trial today? What does a
20 postponement of two months mean for justice? What is more important,
21 justice or time?
22 With all this haste, there was even no time for a Pre-Trial
23 Conference. The Defence holds that nothing must be done at the expense of
24 justice; that time cannot be placed before justice.
25 Your Honours, as you have seen, the submission of the learned
1 friends from the Prosecution was also used in the tactics -- they have
2 also requested for the investigators to be present here and to be heard.
3 We have also submitted a similar motion; that is, that our investigator be
4 present for the duration of the trial here. However, we have not even had
5 time to make our objections to the absence of a Pre-Trial Conference. And
6 with all this investigating team, that makes us question the objectivity.
7 Why should I have called expert witnesses or -- and this Defence
8 considers it indispensable, and asks you to visit the ground, to visit the
9 site where all these events took place. Defence believes that it is
10 absolutely indispensable for the Honourable Judges to see the area.
11 And let me conclude: 60 percent of the indictment refers to the
12 international conflict and alleges that my client is an agent of Croatia
13 in that conflict. If the Prosecutor persists in alleging that, then, Your
14 Honours, we need to submit -- to produce millions of documents, if you
15 wish, for this Defence, and it will always be very straightforward because
16 we are before the World Court of Justice. We who are creating the new
17 law, and we who are participating in the creation of this new law, and all
18 that we say now will be part of the history of international law.
19 So the Defence says, No, we are not ready. And today, we are not
20 ready to stand up to the Prosecutor. And we are requesting at this moment
21 of at least two months so as to prepare for the examination of witnesses,
22 as was customary in this Tribunal before. When the Prosecution closes its
23 case, we should also be given some time before we start off.
24 If our learned friends from the Prosecution see the point and stop
25 insisting that this was an international conflict and that my client was a
1 foreign country's agent, then we would not need all this. We would not
2 need all of this study, because the study of all these millions of
3 documents refers to that part of the indictment and not the other one.
4 And that is all. Thank you very much, Your Honours, for your
5 patience. I hope I will meet with your understanding and sympathy, and I
6 hope you will grant us our motion. Thank you.
7 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Mr. Krsnik, for reminding us of those
8 pending motions.
9 Mr. Seric, do you have anything to add?
10 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, yes, and thank you.
11 The Defence of Vinko Martinovic wishes to point out that there is
12 a problem which appeared when the Prosecution belatedly, in view of the
13 beginning of the trial today, gave us a list of 11 witnesses, and then
14 five days ago, another list of 55 witnesses, so that there was no time for
15 us to prepare for the cross-examination. For this reason, a compromise
16 proposal might be appropriate, because I would not wish to obstruct the
17 beginning of trial today.
18 The Defence of Vinko Martinovic would request an interruption of
19 proceedings after these witnesses are heard, these ten Prosecution
20 witnesses, many of whom may already be here. And this interruption, in
21 our opinion, should be 60 days. That this is not too long is confirmed by
22 the fact that, on the 5th of September, we received 11 binders with
23 thousands of pages which we have not had time to leaf through, never mind
24 analyse and synthesise. These are very important documents for our
25 Defence, especially in view of Rule 68 of the Rules of Procedure and
2 We confirm that we did receive in time the list for the first ten
3 witnesses; that is some 20 days ago. And in our opinion, there is no
4 reason for these ten witnesses not to be heard now, since I assume they
5 are already here. However, the Prosecutor disclosed a couple of days
6 another list of another 55 witnesses which they intend to call; and in
7 doing so, they have prevented us from preparing for the cross-examination,
8 because if we continue immediately the proceedings, then in view of the
9 way in which we work and the length of the daily hearings, we will simply
10 not be able to prepare for the cross-examination. The same applies to the
11 documents, because the Defence doesn't have time during the trial days
12 themselves to study and read these documents which we consider to be
13 extremely important.
14 In the hope that you will accept this position of the Defence of
15 Vinko Martinovic and make an appropriate ruling, I wish to thank you.
16 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
17 Mr. Scott, do you want to respond?
18 MR. SCOTT: Briefly, Your Honour.
19 May it please the Court, Your Honour, it's the Prosecution's
20 position on these issues that the Prosecutor has throughout these
21 Pre-Trial proceedings complied with every rule of the Tribunal, every
22 ruling of the Chamber. Witness statements were provided in this case
23 months, if not years, ago. The documents will show -- the records will
24 show that. In addition to that, some 30 days ago, the notice of the first
25 ten Prosecution witnesses did go out. The Defence have had a full 30 days
1 effectively to prepare to meet those witnesses.
2 We, given some further encouragement from the Chamber, provided an
3 additional full tentative order of our entire Prosecution case witnesses,
4 and we have provided that. We expect that it will take approximately two
5 weeks, perhaps even a bit longer, to go through the first ten witnesses.
6 By the time we will have reached the 11th witness, the Defence teams will
7 have had some three or four weeks of all the Prosecution witness list in
8 the order in which we anticipate calling these witnesses.
9 We submit, Your Honours, this is no different than virtually every
10 other ICTY case. There are extensive lists that go out, and all counsel
11 on all sides have to then prepare their cases as best we can. We don't
12 start trials and then take breaks and prepare for the next batch of
13 witnesses, and stop and prepare for the next batch of witnesses, and stop
14 and prepare for the next batch of witnesses. The Prosecution has made all
15 the disclosures that it has been required to make. And as we pointed out
16 in a recent submission, in fact, we have made many submissions and many
17 disclosures far beyond what the Rules required us to make.
18 And in terms of the documents, there is also an extensive record
19 on the matter of document disclosure. Judge Wald, throughout the
20 Pre-Trial proceedings, I would use the term virtually begged - begged,
21 Your Honours - the Defence counsel to request document discovery under
22 66(B). They continually refused deliberately, and presumably tactically,
23 to make such a question. That was raised, for instance -- and this is all
24 documented; there's a full record on this in our response to the Defence
25 motion to continue, and I can point the Court briefly to three instances.
1 It was addressed by Judge Wald almost a year and a half ago at a Status
2 Conference on the 16th of May, 2000, in which he suggested that both
3 Defence counsel invoke Rule 66(B). They said they would not. It was
4 raised again with the Pre-Trial Conference with Judge Wald on the 20th of
5 July, 2001, approximately two months ago. Once again, both Defence
6 counsel deliberately and clearly said, "We do not seek such document
7 disclosure." It was raised in the first days of the depositions with
8 Mr. Fourmy on the 24th of July, 2001, and again the Defence made it clear
9 that they were not seeking document disclosure. Let me suggest to the
10 Chamber, respectfully, that this, what the counsel are now saying, or at
11 least what Mr. Krsnik is saying, amounts a bit to, "Please save me from
13 We have now disclosed the exhibits that we intend to use during
14 trial, and if the counsel had, over a year and a half ago, invoked Rule
15 66(B) and asked for disclosure, they would have gotten it. But to come in
16 now at the first day of trial and now say, "Well, we haven't had these
17 documents to look at," as I submit, Your Honour, is Mr. Krsnik saying,
18 "Save me from myself." The Prosecution is ready to proceed, we have
19 witnesses in The Hague, and we oppose a delay.
20 Thank you, Judge.
21 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
22 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, may I respond, Your
23 Honour, to the positions presented by my learned friend Mr. Scott, because
24 to say the least, they are not fair.
25 We are addressing an International Tribunal, and I think this is
1 something that my learned friend keeps forgetting. He keeps referring to
2 the American trial system. It is not true that the Prosecution has played
3 fully by the rules. It is not our duty to disclose reciprocally, and it
4 is your obligation to disclose in time. Half of these documents have not
5 been translated, Your Honour. How am I going to explain to my client what
6 all this is about and how can he help me?
7 By a series of these small tactical moves, the Defence is placed
8 in an unfair position, and then I am said to be asking to be saved. We
9 are not asking anyone to save us. We are here because of these two men
10 and not because of me. And I'm just saying that, because of all these
11 facts, the Defence is not ready, and that is correct and that is a fact,
12 and I have been very sincere in saying this. And I really don't
13 understand why the Prosecution is insisting so much that we begin today.
14 You have asked us to cooperate, and we have done our best to
15 cooperate always and whenever we could. But we will not cooperate in such
16 a way that that plays against us.
17 Your Honour, I really don't understand why we are having this
18 discussion. If the Defence is saying that we need two months to prepare
19 properly, is that such an unreasonable or irrational request? But we have
20 the facts to support this request here before us.
21 Since my learned friend has referred to Status Conferences, Your
22 Honours, you know that at the last Status Conference I had warned about
23 all that would happen today, and I indicated this to Judge Wald. She
24 thanked me at the time, because this was a month and a half ago, and she
25 told me that I should convey this to the Trial Chamber as soon as it is
1 formed. As soon as the President of this Trial Chamber was elected, I
2 immediately filed this motion with the necessary explanations. I amended
3 that motion, and I still have no response to it. And that is another
4 reason why we cannot begin. I responded immediately. Does that give any
5 justification for the Prosecutor to respond in this way?
6 And all these documents, these files, these pictures, you will see
7 the wide range of possibilities that the Prosecution has. They have taken
8 shots of every inch of land, they can collect documents from whoever they
9 want. But we will be able to come back to that at a later stage.
10 My learned friend, Mr. Scott, it is not me that is at stake here,
11 it is justice that is at stake, and in order to serve justice, we must all
12 be ready. And as an attorney, I've never allowed my client to suffer
13 because of my mistake or because I was not ready. So it is not me that is
14 at stake but global justice.
15 Thank you.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 JUDGE LIU: Well, Judge Clark will ask the Prosecution some
18 questions. Yes, please.
19 JUDGE CLARK: Thank you. Mr. Scott, I was wondering about the
20 documents that have been just lately served on the Defence. What exactly
21 are those documents? Are they intended to be a bound version of documents
22 that you will be relying on later on, or are they very material to the
23 early witnesses for the Prosecution?
24 MR. SCOTT: They are very material to the early --
25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
1 MR. SCOTT: Pardon me, Your Honour. Your Honour, they are very
2 material to the beginnings of the case. In fact, the very first witness
3 will go through a substantial number of the documents.
4 JUDGE CLARK: Could they have been furnished to the Defence
6 MR. SCOTT: Some of them could have and some of them have been. A
7 good number were disclosed, despite the absence of a request for document
9 JUDGE CLARK: Well, as you know, Mr. Scott, I'm new to this
10 Tribunal, and therefore I depend on the Prosecution to keep me right on
11 procedure. What would the normal procedure be in a case of this length in
12 relation to the service of such a large number of documents?
13 MR. SCOTT: Your Honour, I can answer your question, I think best
14 at least for me, by reference to two other cases that I'm most familiar
15 with, and that is the Blaskic case and the Kordic case. In the Blaskic
16 case, there was no advance disclosure of documents. Each exhibit was
17 tendered in court as the document was used. There was no advance
18 disclosure to the Defence whatsoever. Documents came in on a daily
19 basis. In the Kordic case, some documents were disclosed at the beginning
20 of trial, others came in on a daily basis.
21 This Tribunal has adopted a particular disclosure regime primarily
22 under Rule 66, which provides the rules that govern disclosure in this
23 case. Rule 66 gives complete control of that to the Defence. If the
24 Defence chooses to request document disclosure, they can do so.
25 Now, what this Tribunal has done, in its wisdom, in the Plenary of
1 the Judges in making rules, is to make the Rule that if the Defence asks
2 for disclosure, document disclosure under Rule 66(B), then they are
3 obligated, under Rule 67(C), to provide reciprocal document disclosure to
4 the Prosecution.
5 JUDGE CLARK: So what you're saying is, in the absence of a
6 request by the Defence to have the Prosecution disclose certain documents,
7 there's no obligation on you to serve them until the trial starts?
8 MR. SCOTT: That is correct.
9 JUDGE CLARK: And in this case, as there was no request to serve
10 them, you decided, nevertheless, as a matter of convenience to the
11 Defence, to serve them with all the documents on which you hope to rely if
12 they are admissible?
13 MR. SCOTT: Your Honour has stated my position perhaps better than
14 I just did.
15 In our view, respectfully to counsel, we have done more now than
16 we were required to do. We could have followed the Blaskic method. I
17 could have come before Your Honours every day and tendered a new exhibit
18 every day. And counsel, on the record during the depositions, admitted
19 that. They said, "Mr. Scott is" -- when I put that proposition during the
20 conferences, I said exactly that.
21 Your Honour, there's no secrets here. This has not been a hidden
22 issue. It was discussed before Judge Wald and before Mr. Fourmy, and I
23 specifically said, "The posture that this leaves us in is that we can
24 tender exhibits as we go, without any prior disclosure." Mr. Fourmy, with
25 respect, agreed with me that that was the case, and both Defence counsel
1 on the record agreed with me that that was the case. So in providing
2 these documents now, some at least not ten days but they were made
3 available a week ago Friday, we have done more than we were required to
5 JUDGE CLARK: So your position, as I understand it, Mr. Scott, is
6 the Prosecution has served those documents, even though it's at a
7 relatively late stage, on the Defence in ease of their position so that
8 they would know in advance what documents you were going to call and rely
10 MR. SCOTT: That is absolutely right, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE CLARK: That doesn't make any material difference to the
12 conduct of the case in relation to the first ten witnesses that you
13 propose to call?
14 MR. SCOTT: I'm not sure about -- forgive me, Your Honour. I
15 don't understand the significance of the last part of your comment.
16 JUDGE CLARK: Had you not served these documents at all,
17 Mr. Scott, you're in a position to proceed with your first ten witnesses?
18 MR. SCOTT: That's correct, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE CLARK: And the service of these documents, as I understand,
20 in the binders which the Defence have referred to, don't, as I understand
21 it, make any material difference to the conduct of the Prosecution case in
22 relation to calling those ten witnesses.
23 MR. SCOTT: No, Your Honour, I'm sorry, that's not correct. I
24 thought I said that a moment ago. They are absolutely material to the
25 first witnesses.
1 JUDGE CLARK: No, you misunderstood me. The content of the banned
2 documents will refer to the witnesses, but had you not served those
3 documents in advance and you served them as you went along, the position
4 wouldn't materially change?
5 MR. SCOTT: That's exactly right, Your Honour. Forgive me for
6 not --
7 JUDGE CLARK: Do you mind if I ask the Defence what they have to
8 say in response to that particular aspect of the case? Have I stated the
9 case correctly? Do you disagree with that position?
10 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I absolutely agree with Your Honour,
11 but I think some clarification is required.
12 What disclosure means in reciprocity, that is precisely what I've
13 been referring to. It enables the Prosecutor, who investigates, who
14 charges and who conducts these proceedings, to engage in tactics. And if
15 the Defence were to disclose our documents - and our turn will come in a
16 couple of months - we first have to study their documents to know which
17 documents we have to oppose. I think that is quite clear.
18 Secondly, Your Honour, the Prosecution told us that they would
19 disclose the documents at the last Status Conference, those that support
20 the indictment. All the documents and statements supporting the
21 indictment, they are obligated to disclose to us. And those are these
22 documents. And secondly and most importantly, half of these have not been
23 translated into Croatian. And even if everything Mr. Scott has said may
24 be correct, that he is entitled to this kind of tactics because this is an
25 International Court, and if he has the evidence, he could have told me
1 about it five years ago, why do we need this secrecy and this
2 maneuvering? Why? But as I was saying, they haven't been translated into
3 Croatian, so how am I going to discuss them with my client in the
4 Detention Unit?
5 A further point: These documents are the basis for the Opening
6 Statement, that is, for the indictment. They are a basis for each of the
7 witnesses. They are a basis for the investigator who is being called as a
8 witness to authenticate these documents.
9 JUDGE CLARK: I understand that, Mr. Krsnik. What I wanted to say
10 to you was: Are you materially disadvantaged by having a collection of
11 documents which won't be used until the witnesses are called? By
12 receiving them at this stage, couldn't you proceed with the opening and
13 the first ten witnesses that you're comfortable with and that you were
14 told were going to be called a month ago? Are you materially
15 disadvantaged in relation to the rest of the case by having these
16 documents now? Now, that's the first question I want to ask you.
17 The other question seems to me arises out of this: that you are
18 making the allegation that these documents were served on you as a tactic
19 to force you to disclose your defence by exchanging documents. Is that
20 what you're saying? You're saying that it's a tactic that the Prosecution
21 is using to furnish you with discovery so that you must reciprocate?
22 That's what's been translated to me. Am I incorrect about that?
23 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] No, I'm afraid there's a
24 misunderstanding. I said that the Prosecutor, because of this possibility
25 to disclose envisaged by the Rules, can engage in tactics with the Defence
1 and say, "I won't disclose if you don't disclose to me." But maybe again
2 there's a misunderstanding. However, the documents on which the
3 indictment rests and the witnesses on whom the indictment relies is
4 something that he has to disclose within a reasonable time. That is what
5 the Rule says. And I am saying that half of these documents support the
6 indictment and I should have received them long ago.
7 This has nothing to do with disclosure or with reciprocity. So
8 the Prosecutor keeps saying, "Reciprocity, so we were not obligated." My
9 position is that they were duty bound to disclose to us the documents on
10 which the indictment rests within a reasonable time, and that is the
11 substance of the matter. And we have not received them in due time.
12 And thank you very much for your kindness. I appreciate very much
13 the questions you have put to the Prosecutor, to the Prosecution. Truly,
14 this means a lot to me. And what is most important of all at this point
15 and which needs to be said is that: it's been a year and a half now, and
16 in a spirit of cooperation, I think the Prosecution is obliged to
17 cooperate, because it has unlimited authority, unlimited possibilities, in
18 the history of legal systems in the world. And within the scope of those
19 unlimited possibilities, if someone comes here and spends two years in
20 prison, it is very difficult to say that this may not be within the
21 jurisdiction of this Tribunal. And this is something that the Defence is
22 opposed to and is saying, "You have no right to this kind of tactics."
23 After all, this is a different kind of court. And the Defence is saying
24 if we had received all this on time -- but let me say finally: Why did we
25 receive ten witnesses 20 days ago and then 55 three days ago? The
1 Prosecution was not aware of this final list of witnesses a month ago?
2 Isn't that tactics?
3 JUDGE CLARK: Can I just interrupt you there? I think that all of
4 us are aware that getting witnesses together is very difficult from your
5 jurisdiction to here because of historical reasons. What I really want to
6 know at this stage, and I don't want to cut you short in any way - I know
7 that what you're saying is very important - but what I really want to say
8 is: Are you seriously prejudiced if the Prosecution were to open the
9 case, open the facts to the Tribunal, and to call the witnesses that
10 you've had notice of for quite some time, and that maybe the other Judges
11 and I will confer in relation to what happens later? You're not seriously
12 prejudiced in relation to that case, are you?
13 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, yes, I would be
14 seriously prejudiced. That is the problem. Surely you don't think that I
15 would be wasting your precious time by saying all this. There was no
16 single reason for us to discuss this today here and now. We could have
17 discussed these matters at the Pre-Trial Conference, which we were duty
18 bound to hold, according to the Statute of this Tribunal, and which we
19 didn't hold.
20 Your Honour, to close, the Defence has been requesting this for a
21 month and a half. I have spoken to my learned friends. I told them that
22 I would make this request. I drew their attention to the problems I am
23 faced with. We spoke as colleagues. They are aware of this, the Tribunal
24 is aware of this, and we are appealing. And I really don't know what to
25 do. And we are not ready to begin. And if we do begin, we would be
1 seriously prejudiced. Of course, we are in open session and we can't go
2 into any details. There are some very serious witnesses for whom we have
3 to prepare properly. And in order to prepare properly, we have to study
4 all the documents.
5 And I won't take any more of your time, but let me just make one
6 point. There are only 17 files here. I have to review 10.000 times as
7 many. Who is going to translate it? Who is going to pay for the
8 copying? I know that you are a recent arrival here, but these are very
9 serious problems. But this will not affect justice in this Tribunal, or
10 it should not affect justice.
11 Thank you.
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Seric.
13 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, Your Excellency Judge
14 Clark, I think you hit the nail on the head regarding this problem, and
15 that is precisely why we have to bear in mind the provisions of three
16 Rules of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence; the difference between Rule
17 66, which talks about disclosure by the Prosecutor, and Rule 67, which
18 talks about reciprocal disclosure.
19 The Defence of Vinko Martinovic renounced this right of reciprocal
20 disclosure precisely because this Defence team did not receive a single
21 document, though we did request it, some very important documents for the
22 Defence, neither from the authorities in Bosnia-Herzegovina nor from the
23 authorities in Croatia, ranging from various journals and publications.
24 The Defence of Vinko Martinovic did not receive a single document from the
25 Croatian or the Bosnian authorities for us to be able to disclose them to
1 the Prosecutor even if we wanted to. So we have all the necessary
2 correspondence for me to be able to assert here that we didn't receive
3 anything. Why this is so, I don't know. Whether it is because someone in
4 Croatia or Bosnia fears cooperation with the Defence team of Vinko
5 Martinovic is a possibility.
6 But what I am trying to say is that the right of the Defence to
7 receive, in a timely fashion, copies of supporting material with the
8 indictment, witness statements, Rule 66(B) says that the Prosecutor shall,
9 on request - and we did request - permit the Defence to inspect any books,
10 documents, photographs and tangible objects in the Prosecutor's custody or
11 control. And I refer in particular to Rule 68, because there are such
12 documents too, which says that the Prosecutor shall, as soon as
13 practicable, disclose to the Defence the existence of material known to
14 the Prosecutor which in any way tends to suggest the innocence or mitigate
15 the guilt of the accused.
16 JUDGE CLARK: [Previous interpretation continues]...
17 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Yes, but two days ago. But I need to
18 read it and study it.
19 JUDGE CLARK: [Previous interpretation continues]... in that
20 Pre-Trial Conference in December of last year?
21 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] No, only now as part of these
23 JUDGE CLARK: [Previous interpretation continues]... the other
24 documents in relation to the trial --
25 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] We did receive the other documents,
1 but things are concealed among these documents which are very important
2 from the standpoint of the provisions of these Rules that I have cited.
3 So my suggestion, the suggestion of the Defence of Vinko
4 Martinovic, is a compromise proposition, fully appreciating the position
5 of Mr. Krsnik. And I appreciate his reasons. So my proposition would be
6 what you have suggested: that as far as this Defence is concerned, we
7 could hear these ten witnesses, and in the meantime, you would have time
8 yourselves to rule on the possibility of some adjournment later on.
9 Thank you.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 JUDGE DIARRA: [Interpretation] My question is to Mr. Seric and has
12 to do with the postponement he has requested in order to prepare for the
13 cross-examination of the witnesses, in view of the last-minute
14 submission. I should like to know how important is it for him to prepare
15 to cross-examine the witnesses, because when the witnesses appear here, it
16 will make it possible for him to clarify all of the matters. He has
17 suggested a compromise, that is, to start with these ten witnesses. I
18 believe that this matter can be resolved and, in the course of witness
19 examination, many things can be clarified.
20 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Well, in those situations, Your
21 Honour, the Defence has simply been put in such a situation. We have a
22 number of witnesses who have already been heard several times, and
23 according to documentation which exists and which we received, we indeed
24 need the time to prepare for this cross-examination, because we need to
25 juxtapose their testimonies. We therefore need to carry out certain
1 screenings which also presumes certain investigation on the part of the
3 JUDGE DIARRA: [Interpretation] Yes, I understand.
4 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
5 JUDGE LIU: Okay. After hearing -- yes, yes, Mr. Scott. I didn't
6 notice you, I'm sorry.
7 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Your Honour. I'll be very brief.
8 I'm not going to belabour these issues, unless the Chamber has
9 additional questions for me, save this: A number of inaccuracies have
10 been stated in the last few minutes. If the Chamber is of a mind to
11 address these issues further, the Prosecution would want to be heard much
12 more extensively.
13 As an example, there's been reference to the material supporting
14 the indictment. That is a term of art under Rule 66(A)(1) of the Rules.
15 That material was provided months ago, a little bit more than a year ago.
16 In fact, almost two years ago in one instance. That is the specific set
17 of material, that is the confirming material that goes to the confirming
18 Judge. For counsel to stand up and suggest that that has not been
19 provided to them or was not provided to them until recently is just simply
20 not true.
21 THE INTERPRETER: Could you slow down, Mr. Scott, please.
22 MR. SCOTT: My apologies to the interpreters.
23 As I said at the outset, Mr. President, the Prosecution has
24 complied with each Rule and each ruling of the Chamber. Thank you.
25 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
1 After hearing the arguments from both sides, this Trial Chamber
2 will adjourn for about ten minutes to consult among ourselves for the
4 --- Break taken at 10.34 a.m.
5 --- On resuming at 10.45 a.m.
6 JUDGE LIU: This Trial Chamber is seized of two oral motions.
7 The first one is made by Mr. Krsnik for the delaying of the date of the
8 trial. Another motion is made by Mr. Seric for the interruption of the
9 trial after the first ten witnesses.
10 After hearing the arguments made by the two parties, and the Trial
11 Chamber notices that a Pre-Trial Conference was held on the December 7th,
12 2000, and the second part was attended by the three Judges of the Trial
13 Chamber I and constituted the formal Pre-Trial Conference. This Trial Chamber
14 arrived at the following decision: As for the first motion to delay the
15 trial, this Trial Chamber is still in the position expressed by its
16 decision dated October [sic] 31st, 2001. That is, this motion is denied
17 because the Trial Chamber is of the view that Defence are in no way
18 prejudiced and the time between the provision of the documents and the
19 list and the start of the trial should be ample time for Defence to plan
20 their respective cross-examination of the witnesses.
21 As for the second motion, this Trial Chamber will reserve its
22 right to make the proper decisions at a later stage. So decided.
23 And I was reminded that there was a mistake in the transcript,
24 that the Trial Chamber's decision of the -- it should be August the 31st,
25 2001, rather than October 31st, 2001.
1 So, Mr. Scott, are you ready to proceed?
2 MR. SCOTT: I am, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.
4 [Prosecution Opening Statement]
5 MR. SCOTT: May it please the Court, Counsel, ladies and
6 gentlemen. On the 17th of April, 1993, Mladen Naletilic, Tuta, was on the
7 cutting edge of ethnic cleansing. The president of the Croatian community
8 of Herceg-Bosna, Mate Boban had issued an ultimatum to the Bosnian
9 Muslims, and Mladen Naletilic, Tuta, was there to carry it out, to execute
10 the ultimatum. He commanded the Croatian Defence Council Forces attack on
11 the Villages of Sovici and Doljani in central Herzegovina. He presided
12 over the expulsion of Bosnian Muslim civilians from their homes and from
13 their villages. He presided over the burning of their homes and the
14 destruction of their mosques. He presided over the burning of the mosque
15 in both towns, Sovici and Doljani, and he commanded and set the example in
16 the interrogation and beating of Muslim men taken prisoner.
17 The evidence will show that Mladen Naletilic, Tuta, and his
18 troops, the Convicts' Battalion, was right in the thick of it, right where
19 they would so often be in the bloody months ahead, when Bosnian Muslims
20 were thrown out of their homes, when their men were killed, when their
21 property was looted and destroyed, and their prisoners treated brutally
22 and inhumanely.
23 After the attack on Sovici and Doljani was completed, many of the
24 Bosnian Muslim prisoners were taken to Tuta's field headquarters at a fish
25 farm in Doljani. There, they were repeatedly beaten and abused, both by
1 Tuta personally, by his senior officers, and by his soldiers. The
2 evidence will show that Tuta threatened prisoners with a pistol, that he
3 put a pistol in one or more prisoner's mouth or to their heads, and he
4 told them, "Lie down and kiss Croatian ground."
5 Only a few weeks later, on the 10th of May, 1993, Mladen
6 Naletilic, Tuta, stood victorious in the city of Mostar where he received
7 before him captured Muslim men and arrested Muslim men. Tuta stood before
8 them and swore at the Muslim prisoners. He used the racial insult, which
9 I would not use myself, but to quote the word attributed to the accused
10 Tuta, he insulted their "balija mothers," and he personally beat one of
11 the prisoners with his Motorola radio; again, in front of his officers and
12 men, this is the example he set.
13 There was also another man who would play a role, a key role, in
14 the Croatian Defence Council's continuing attacks and expulsions in Mostar
15 and the surrounding area. One of Mladen Naletilic, Tuta's, commanders,
16 the other accused, Vinko Martinovic, Stela. A Muslim prisoner will tell
17 you that he was twice taken to the front line in Mostar to work for
18 Vinko Martinovic's unit. And on the first occasion, the prisoner was
19 beaten by Martinovic himself, and Martinovic told the prisoner, "I am the
20 one called Stela, and you are going to see who Stela is."
21 In the midst of brutal treatment of Bosnian Muslim prisoners who
22 were taken for forced labour at Stela's frontline area, you will hear how
23 Vinko Martinovic, Stela, said to them, "You have come to work for me."
24 Good morning, Your Honours. Again, my name is Kenneth Scott. I
25 am the senior trial attorney representing the Prosecution in this case.
1 It is both my privilege and my responsibility to present to you the
2 Prosecution case. As I have introduced already, but I will introduce to
3 you briefly again, with me, and as very substantial participants in this
4 trial, will be Mr. Douglas Stringer, Mr. Vassily Poriouvaev, Mr. Roeland
5 Bos. Again, our case manager is Ms. Kimberley Fleming.
6 Presenting these cases, Your Honours can understand, present a
7 number of challenges. One of these is the simple volume of information.
8 A particular aspect of this is the names of the various states, the names
9 of governments, organizations, armies, political parties, treaties,
10 persons, events, and places. It would probably not be very helpful or
11 interesting if I were to stand here for the next few minutes and simply go
12 through a list of names and terms, so I won't do that. The Prosecutor
13 has, however, prepared a glossary which may be helpful to the Chamber and
14 to other participants and staff in the trial. That has previously been
15 provided to the Defence counsel, and I will make that glossary -- if it
16 has not already, make that glossary available to the Chamber now.
17 In addition to that, Your Honours, I will try -- I will do my best
18 to try to stop and define or explain some of the more common terms as we
19 go forward. The case, of course, as the name of this Tribunal indicates,
20 concerns events in the former Yugoslavia. I would, therefore, like to
21 spend a few minutes going over several maps or diagrams which the
22 Prosecution has prepared and will make available to the Chamber and, of
23 course, to counsel for what assistance they may provide. We have brought
24 with us -- excuse me, Your Honour -- two large maps, one which has been
25 marked for identification as Prosecution Exhibit P1, which you can see is
1 a map of the entire former Yugoslavia. And the other second, if you will,
2 hard-mounted map, is a map of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
3 We fully realize that these maps that I have shown you now are not
4 terribly useful in terms of illustrating something over the distance from
5 the witness stand to where Your Honours are seated, and we are mindful of
6 that. However, we do make these maps available for such use during the
7 course of this trial, as they may be helpful. While we consider them
8 Prosecution exhibits, we certainly make them available for Defence counsel
9 as well, if that will assist them.
10 In addition to these large maps, we have some smaller maps which
11 are probably easier to work with on a day-to-day basis. They also have
12 the virtue that they can be placed on this device called the ELMO, and
13 then everyone can have them on their computer screens.
14 For instance, as an example, with the Court's permission and
15 understanding, I will try to do as much of this myself to save the usher
16 running back and forth and to make the presentation as smooth as
17 possible. This is simply another version of one of the maps in front of
18 Your Honours, which again, in a smaller version which each Judge can put
19 in his or her own file, or what have you, and it has the virtue of being
20 on -- being put on the ELMO and we can go, we can enlarge and go in and
21 out on the map. That is just simply one of the tools.
22 Now, to begin to zero in, Your Honours, on the particular parts of
23 Bosnia-Herzegovina that most relate to this case, we have Exhibit P3.1.
24 The municipalities, and that is a political unit in the former Yugoslavia
25 or Bosnia -- I suppose in other countries, we might call them states or
1 cantons or provinces, or perhaps even counties -- these are the particular
2 units, the municipalities or opstinas, that most directly relate to this
3 Tuta/Stela case. And you will see that, and for point of reference, since
4 more people tend to be familiar, perhaps at least initially, with the city
5 of Sarajevo, you can see what parts of the country we are talking about
6 with the largest city in that area, which we will talk about extensively,
7 being the city of Mostar.
8 I might also say here what the Court will come to understand, if
9 it does not already, is sometimes it is talking about the municipality as
10 a whole, that is the name or word, and sometimes it may refer to a
11 particular town or city. For instance, Mostar is both a city and a
12 municipality. There is the large municipality or state or county that is
13 marked here in red. That is the municipality of Mostar.
14 But within Mostar, you also have the city of Mostar. The same can
15 be said for Siroki Brijeg, which was formerly known as Listica, but
16 renamed Siroki Brijeg. There is both the municipality of Siroki Brijeg,
17 that is the larger political subdivision, and there is also the town of
18 Siroki Brijeg. Important to this case in a number of respects, including
19 the fact that the accused Tuta's headquarters was in Siroki Brijeg.
20 I'll next orient Your Honours --
21 JUDGE LIU: I'm sorry to interrupt you, Mr. Scott. Is it time for
22 us to break? I hope there is somebody on your team who will remind you.
23 MR. SCOTT: Your Honour --
24 JUDGE LIU: We have to break at 11:00 for the sake of the
1 MR. SCOTT: I am entirely in the Court's hands, and we will take a
2 break any time the Chamber chooses.
3 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. We are adjourned until 11.30.
4 --- Recess taken at 11.00 a.m.
5 --- On resuming at 11.30 a.m.
6 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Scott, before you start, you know, there is
7 something I want to remind both parties.
8 During the break, I was reminded by the Registrar that the new
9 time schedule of the courtroom schedule was issued, and every morning we
10 will sit -- we will start our trial at 9.30 until 1.00. Then we will have
11 90 minutes' break. We will start in the afternoon at 2.30 to 4.00. And
12 during the morning session, there is a break at 11.00 until 11.30. We
13 will sit from Monday to Friday morning until 1.00. For the Friday
14 afternoon, some of the Judges may have other obligations or this courtroom
15 may be for another use.
16 So, Mr. Scott, are you ready to proceed?
17 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
19 MR. SCOTT: Your Honours, we were talking about some maps, and I
20 want to, I think, do two more for now. We also have a somewhat larger
21 version - not this size but perhaps A3 size - but also this size of this
22 map, which again may assist the Chamber in terms of locations critical to
23 the case. And in fact, there is an additional separate version. I'm just
24 trying to make the Chamber aware of the tools that will be available. It
25 actually looks like this, which perhaps, depending on each of Your
1 Honours' own personal preferences, might be the best single reference
2 tool, because this really does take us down to the most relevant areas and
3 it shows the most pertinent locations to the case.
4 Let me just briefly, by way of orientation, mention some of the
5 key locations. You have already heard reference to the villages of Sovici
6 and Doljani. They are at the top of the map, and this map is oriented
7 basically north, but at the top of the sheet would be basically north. We
8 have Doljani and Sovici. You have the city of Mostar. You have, just to
9 the north of the city of Mostar, Rastani, which you will hear about in the
10 case. You have already heard about Siroki Brijeg, which is at this
11 location. This was the location of Tuta's main headquarters. You will
12 also hear testimony about the Heliodrom, which was a former Yugoslav Army
13 base at a place called Rodoc, which is at this location. You will also
14 hear about detention prisoners being detained at a place called Ljubuski,
15 and you may hear, probably somewhat less so than the ones I've gone
16 through in the last few minutes, but you may hear and will hear testimony
17 that touches on Medugorje, Dretelj, Capljina. I think that's basically
18 it. Again, a smaller version of these maps will be made available to the
20 There is also this document, which is smaller again, Exhibit 3.2,
21 which is basically part of one of the larger maps. It does have some
22 additional features, such as topographical lines, if that might be
23 helpful. It sometimes tends to get perhaps a bit cluttered in comparison
24 to this. But in any event, they are all available.
25 What I would like to do now, Your Honours, is tell you how I
1 anticipate proceeding with the balance of my Opening Statement. I will
2 seek to provide Your Honours with an overview of the most relevant aspects
3 of the Bosnian Croat / Bosnian Muslim conflict as they bear upon this case
4 and to set this case in context. Certainly, and the Chamber will
5 understand, literally hours, if not days, could be spent on the history,
6 geography, political developments, military doctrine and other topics.
7 Necessarily, I can only provide you today a very broad overview. When the
8 overview is provided, I will then turn to the particular charges in the
9 amended indictment and provide some additional outline of the Prosecution
10 evidence. In proceeding this way, I do want to alert the Chamber, please,
11 that there may be and in fact will be some repetition and overlap between,
12 if you will, the first go-round and then the more specific review. But if
13 I can respectfully say so, Your Honours, I think that perhaps some
14 repetition is not such a major sin if it assists all of us and assists the
15 Chamber in becoming oriented to the case. I will then, at the end of my
16 opening, say a few words about how the Prosecution anticipates presenting
17 its case.
18 Now, returning to what this case is about, as with all cases at
19 the ICTY, the story of this case begins with the disintegration of the
20 former Yugoslavia. On the 25th of June, 1991, the former Republics of
21 Croatia and Slovenia declared independence. The Republic of
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina held a referendum and declared its independence in
23 early March 1992.
24 The crimes charged in this case occurred in the context of a wider
25 conflict between the Bosnian Croat forces, which you will hear described
1 as the Croatian Defence Council, or in short, "HVO," which in fact was
2 more than just the army. One could say that the HVO was the army, the
3 government, the administration and the executive branch of the
4 self-declared Bosnian Croat state. You will hear repeatedly in the next
5 days the term "HVO," and that is the Croatian Defence Council.
6 You will also hear that this conflict, this wider conflict, was
7 indeed actively supported and directed in some instances by the Army of
8 the Republic of Croatia, which will be referenced often in short as the
9 HV, "HV" simply being, in a nutshell, the Croatian alphabet language for
10 the army of the Republic of Croatia, and that they were fighting-- these
11 forces were allied against the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is, the
12 duly-elected and established government based in Sarajevo. Those forces
13 will often be referred to as the AbiH, the Army of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
14 This conflict began as early as May 1992 in parts of Central
15 Bosnia and continued until the signing of the Washington Agreement in
16 February and March of 1994. The evidence at trial will show that the
17 crimes committed by the accused and their subordinates in this case
18 occurred as part of a wider campaign of persecution and ethnic cleansing
19 directed by the HVO - the Croatian Defence Council - against Bosnian
20 Muslims throughout Bosnia-Herzegovina. The acts and omissions charged
21 against these accused were part of a widespread, large-scale and
22 systematic attack and campaign of persecution directed against the Bosnian
23 Muslim population.
24 During or before the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, a Croatian
25 nationalist political party called the Croatian Democratic Union, or HDZ
1 for short, was formed by former President Tudjman of Croatia and others in
2 Croatia. It was this same nationalist HDZ party which ruled the Republic
3 of Croatia from approximately 1991 until soon after President Tudjman's
4 death in late 1999. A branch of this same party was formed among the
5 Bosnian Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina, called the Croatian Democratic Union
6 of Bosnia-Herzegovina, or again in short, the HDZ-BiH, or we will probably
7 simply say "the HDZ," meaning either or both the Croatian parent and the
8 Bosnian Croat child, if you will.
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina, as the name indicates, is a country composed
10 of at least two historical regions, the central and eastern part of the
11 country called Bosnia, and the western or southwestern part of the country
12 known as Herzegovina. This case primarily relates to Herzegovina. It is
13 generally understood to include Southern Bosnia-Herzegovina, including
14 essentially the municipalities previously identified. In fact,
15 Herzegovina is larger than just those. Many of the other unmarked
16 municipalities - that would be to the west and southwest of Sarajevo -
17 would also be considered, of course, part of Herzegovina. But again, this
18 will show you and does show you the most relevant municipalities which
19 were part of Herzegovina and part of this case.
20 On November 18th, 1991, the HDZ and the Bosnian Croats declared
21 the existence of the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna or, again, the HZ
22 H-B for short. I'm reminded, as I hear myself, that I'm giving the Court
23 many abbreviations and terms. I'm trying to pick only the most important,
24 and I can only tell the Chamber you will hear these terms repeatedly. We
25 will refer to it primarily as either just, in short, Herceg-Bosna or the
1 HZ H-B.
2 Essentially what happened, Your Honours, is that certain of the
3 Bosnian Croats - we don't suggest for a minute all Bosnian Croats - but a
4 nationalist, more extreme set of the Bosnian Croats declared this --
5 essentially self-declared existence of an independent or republic or
6 entity of the Bosnian Croats on the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina called
7 the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna. It was claimed to be, in its own
8 declaration, a separate political, cultural, economic and territorial
9 whole in the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Its purposes included, the
10 Prosecution would submit, the establishment of closer ties to and perhaps
11 ultimately annexation or union with the Republic of Croatia. These
12 aspirations, which were supported by the Republic of Croatia, were
13 evidenced by the HZ H-B's use of Croatian currency, the Croatian language,
14 Croatian curriculum in the schools, and the granting by the Republic of
15 Croatia of Croatian citizenship to Bosnian Croats.
16 The Court should know that in fact the Constitutional Court of the
17 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina declared the HZ H-B illegal in September of
18 1992. Not deterred by this, the HZ H-B now declared itself not just the
19 Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna but now declared itself the Croatian
20 Republic of Herzegovina on the 28th of August, 1993. In other words, the
21 word "Community" was changed to the word "Republic." As I said earlier,
22 for the purposes of this case, we will often refer to that whole entity as
23 simply Herceg-Bosna. Neither of these entities were ever recognised by
24 the International Community as legitimate states. And as I mentioned
25 already, the Constitutional Court of Bosnia-Herzegovina declared it
2 Now, the city of Mostar is the historical capital and the largest
3 city of Herzegovina. Article 3 of the HZ H-B proclamation of 18 November
4 1991 designated Mostar as the capital of this community. That is, the
5 Bosnian Croats, or at least this part of them, declared their capital not
6 to be Sarajevo but to be Mostar. This designation of Mostar was
7 reaffirmed by the decree issued by the President of Herceg-Bosna, Mate
8 Boban, on 8 April 1992, which also set up this entity you've heard about
9 already, the Croatian Defence Council, or HVO. This was described and
10 acted as the supreme executive, administrative and defence body of
11 Herceg-Bosna, again with its headquarters in Mostar.
12 These facts are important, Your Honours, because much of the
13 evidence in this case will relate to the city of Mostar and the terrible
14 things that happened there. As just indicated, the evidence will make it
15 clear that the HVO considered Mostar their capital. And in the view of
16 many of them, there was no room in Mostar for Muslims.
17 I have already described to you that despite the name "Croatian
18 Defence Council," it in fact served a wide number of executive and
19 governmental purposes. I would also make the Chamber aware, if it is not
20 already, that while the name was the Croatian Defence Council, the HVO in
21 fact for a substantial period of time had a substantial number of Bosnian
22 Muslim members, not just Croats but Muslims in its membership, because
23 indeed the evidence will show, and I think history establishes this and I
24 suspect it would not be disputed in this case - I would hope not - that
25 for many months after the war started in Yugoslavia, of course, the Croats
1 and Muslims fought together against their then-common enemy, the Serbs.
2 And during that time, as I mentioned, there were in fact many Muslims in
3 the HVO. Many of them remained there until well into 1993. And in fact,
4 the Trial Chamber will hear testimony of several Bosnian Muslim members of
5 the HVO who were still in the HVO in the spring and early summer of 1993,
6 until they were disarmed, arrested and imprisoned by their very former
7 Croat friends and allies.
8 Despite being allies against the Serbs, the evidence will show
9 that in fact tensions grew between the Croats and Muslims throughout
10 1992. In October of 1992, a conflict occurred between the HVO and Bosnian
11 Muslims at Prozor. During the latter part of 1992 and the first several
12 months of 1993, there were increasing tensions between the Bosnian Croats
13 and Bosnian Muslims. And I should stop here to say another term in
14 reference to the Bosnian Muslims is often used, and that is "Bosniaks."
15 Respectfully, Your Honour, I and perhaps most of the Prosecution team will
16 use the terms probably interchangeably, with no disrespect intended to
17 either reference. In my experience in Bosnia, people use both
18 interchangeably. Sometimes we may say "Bosniak," which means a Bosnian
19 Muslim, and sometimes we will say "Bosnian Muslim."
20 In any event, the fighting grew, the tensions were growing between
21 the Croats and the Bosniaks, and again in some instances armed conflict
22 began breaking out, again such as in Prozor in 1992 and in Gornji Vakuf,
23 in Busovaca, in January 1993. Things, if you will, were coming undone.
24 By the first few months of 1993, the Bosnian Croats, Muslims and
25 Serbs had been engaged for some time, under the sponsorship of the
1 International Community, in a series of peace negotiations concerning what
2 was known or became known as the Vance-Owen Plan. By approximately late
3 March of 1993, the Bosnian Croats and the Bosnian Muslims had either
4 signed or expressed their intent to sign the Vance-Owen Plan. In fact,
5 the Bosnian Serbs, the third party, never did accept or sign the Plan.
6 The evidence will show - and the reason I mention this in Opening
7 Statement - the evidence will show that the Bosnian Croats, who for
8 whatever reason were favourably positioned in the Vance-Owen Plan, became
9 impatient with further steps to implement the plan, and in early April the
10 President of Herceg-Bosna, Mate Boban, issued an ultimatum to the
12 That ultimatum was this: "Do not proceed with implementing the
13 Vance-Owen plan." And the Muslim forces in certain municipalities or
14 cantons did not subordinate and allow themselves to be taken over by the
15 HVO. "If you do not do that, Muslims, by the 15th of April, 1993, then we
16 will do it by force."
17 I mentioned to you the 15th of April, 1993, and you will note
18 already, of course, that the attack on Rastani led by the accused Tuta
19 occurred on the 17th of April, 1993, two days after the ultimatum
20 expired. In fact, in the first half of April, the Bosnian-Croat Muslim
21 tensions escalated to higher, more dangerous levels. In the Herzegovinian
22 municipalities of Stolac, Capljina, and Mostar, the HVO arrested prominent
23 Bosnian Muslims and imposed various forms of persecution against the
24 Bosnian-Muslim population such as dismissals from government and work
25 positions, discrimination in the delivery of humanitarian aid, attacks
1 against Bosnian-Muslim houses and property, an imposition of the Croat
2 language and education.
3 As I mentioned, the date of Mate Boban's ultimatum, 15th of April,
4 1993, passed without the HVO being satisfied. Accordingly, on the 16th of
5 April, 1993, the HVO launched a large-scale offensive against the army at
6 Bosnia-Herzegovina and against the Bosnian-Muslim population in general,
7 starting in Central Bosnia in the municipalities of Vitez and Busovaca.
8 Indeed, the 16th of April, 1993, is one of the most widely known dates of
9 the entire war. Because it was on the 16th of April, 1993, that HVO units
10 controlled by Tihomir Blaskic and Dario Kordic, both adjudged guilty in
11 this Tribunal, massacred approximately 100 Bosnian-Muslim civilians in the
12 village of Ahmici, near Vitez in Central Bosnia.
13 Two days later, on the 18th of April, 1993, HVO units carried out
14 a series of coordinated attacks against the Muslims in the Kiseljak
15 municipality just north of Sarajevo. The purpose of the HVO attacks on
16 Bosnian Muslims in Central Bosnia was to facilitate the establishment of
17 an ethnically-homogenous or Croat-dominated entity on a territory of a
18 sovereign country, that is Bosnia-Herzegovina, of what the HDZ and the HVO
19 Croats called Herceg-Bosna. The crimes committed in Central Bosnia in
20 furtherance of that objective have been the subject of several cases in
21 this Tribunal, leading to the judgments in the Blaskic case, Kordic,
22 Aleksovski, Kupreskic, and the Furundzija cases.
23 The reason, or one reason, why this is important is because the
24 evidence in this case will show, Your Honours, that the crimes committed
25 by these accused, Naletilic and Martinovic, were part and parcel of the
1 same plan, pursuing the same objectives as was being carried out by others
2 in Central Bosnia. You will hear evidence that both Tuta's state of mind
3 and his conduct were consistent with and in furtherance of this plan and
4 objectives. You will hear testimony that Tuta considered that Muslims
5 were nothing more than "Croats of Muslim faith."
6 On the 17th of April, only one day after Ahmici, the day after
7 Ahmici, as part of this same HVO plan, the accused Mladen Naletilic, Tuta,
8 attacked the villages of Sovici and Doljani. After the attack was
9 completed, the HVO forces expelled and evicted the Bosnian-Muslim
10 population and destroyed their houses and a local mosque. On the 9th of
11 May, the HVO, including the Convicts' Battalion, the unit that Tuta
12 commanded, launched a large military offensive against the Bosnian Muslims
13 and the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina in Mostar. The Bosnian-Muslim
14 population was thereafter a target of a systematic campaign of violence,
15 persecution, and ethnic cleansing in the area of Mostar occupied by the
16 HVO, which was called West Mostar. And this conduct lasted into the early
17 part of 1994.
18 Now, what you will find, and what you will begin hearing virtually
19 immediately, is that the city of Mostar essentially became split between
20 the Muslim Mostar and East Mostar and the Croat Mostar, which was West
21 Mostar, a condition that essentially continued throughout the war. And in
22 fact, in some respects, unfortunately, is largely the case still today.
23 Across the confrontation line, that is in East Mostar, that part
24 of Mostar was besieged by the HVO in a Sarajevo-like siege and suffered
25 the most horrible and extreme conditions, including constant shelling,
1 sniping, and the obstruction or blocking of humanitarian aid into that
2 part of the city.
3 The evidence will show that the accused, Naletilic, as one of the
4 top HVO leaders in Herzegovina and commander of the Convicts' Battalion,
5 his subordinate, the accused Vinko Martinovic, Stela, was the commander of
6 one part of the Convicts' Battalion first called the Mrmak, later changed
7 to Vinko Skrobo, ATG, anti-terrorist group unit of the Convicts'
8 Battalion. The evidence will show that both Tuta and Stela were among the
9 leading perpetrators of this campaign against Bosnian Muslims.
10 The goal of the HVO's overall campaign in Herzegovina was to gain
11 control of the various municipalities which they claimed to be part of
12 Herceg-Bosna including, again, Mostar, Jablanica, Stolac, and others, and
13 to either force the Bosnian-Muslim population to leave these territories
14 entirely, or at least that they were reduced to complete subjugation of
15 the Bosnian Croats. The means used to accomplish these ends included mass
16 expulsions, detentions and imprisonments, killings, beatings, torture,
17 evictions, destruction of cultural and religious heritage, looting, and
18 deprivation of basic civil and human rights. These steps or means were
19 executed following a systematic and wide pattern of ethnic, religious, and
20 political discrimination.
21 As a result of this campaign, in fact, tens of thousands of
22 Bosnian Muslims were forced out of their homes. They were forced out of
23 Mostar or forced into East Mostar under increasingly horrible conditions.
24 In fact, as a result of the HVO onslaught, the traditional ethnic
25 diversity in many parts of this region was virtually eliminated. And the
1 Bosnian-Croat government was imposed.
2 That is the wider context of the crimes committed, or alleged to
3 be convicted [sic] which have been charged against these accused.
4 The accused Mladen Naletilic and Vinko Martinovic are charged with
5 crimes committed during 1993, early 1994, as part of this large-scale HVO
6 ethnic cleansing campaign. Some of the crimes alleged in the indictment
7 were perpetrated personally by each of the accused. Many other crimes
8 were perpetrated by their subordinates, by their officers and soldiers
9 under their control and subject to being either prevented in their conduct
10 or punished for their conduct. But indeed, the evidence will show that
11 far from punishing soldiers for war crimes, both the accused Tuta and the
12 accused Martinovic led by example, and not a good example, but led by
13 committing atrocities by their own hand.
14 The Convicts' Battalion, the evidence will show, was, in the
15 Croatian language, called Kaznjenicka Bojna, which can be translated again
16 to be either Convicts' Battalion or Punishment Battalion. The Chamber
17 will also hear it at times referred to as simply "Tuta's men" or the
19 The battalion was comprised of several hundred solders divided
20 into smaller units. The most notorious of these units was the so-called
21 anti-terrorist groups, or, again, another abbreviation for you, ATGs. A
22 very general short chart, again, to orient the Chamber on the structure.
23 It has been placed on the ELMO. The Prosecution's evidence will show that
24 the Kaznjenicka Bojna was the overall military unit; again, sometimes
25 known by "Tuta's men" or other references. The commander was the accused
1 Tuta. The main headquarters of this unit was in Siroki Brijeg at what had
2 been a tobacco factory. The subunits -- you might call them companies,
3 platoons, whatever unit-- the subunits of the battalion were, again, the
4 ATGs, also some other subunits, but we are focusing here primarily on
5 these so-called anti-terrorist groups. The evidence will show that one of
6 these anti-terrorist groups was the group commanded by the second accused,
7 Vinko Martinovic, Stela. He was the commander who was first known and
8 referenced as the Mrmak ATG, which later changed its name to the Vinko
9 Skrobo ATG. Its headquarters was in West Mostar, not very far from the
10 confrontation line that divided Mostar.
11 You will also hear testimony and receive evidence in the case that
12 the Convicts' Battalion also had other bases, as some already mentioned,
13 in Siroki Brijeg, Mostar, a place called the Heliodrom, and in Ljubuski.
14 Next thing on the ELMO has been marked for identification as
15 Exhibit 26.9. This shows, in fact, what was the former tobacco factory in
16 Siroki Brijeg, and this was the main base for the Convicts' Battalion and
17 the accused Tuta's principal headquarters. The evidence will show that
18 the Convicts' Battalion was what some might call a special unit. They
19 were very well equipped; they were very aggressive. It was used as an
20 assault force, what some people might use the term, shock troops. They
21 were sent into the most difficult situations, and they were notorious for
22 being involved in the dirtiest jobs, including attacks on and expulsion of
23 Bosnian Muslim civilians and destroying their homes and villages and
24 plundering their property.
25 The evidence will show that the accused Mladen Naletilic, Tuta,
1 was born on the 1st of December, 1946 in Siroki Brijeg, or what was then
2 called Listica, now known as Siroki Brijeg. He is by birth a
3 Bosnian-Croat who later acquired and has citizenship of the Republic of
5 The evidence will show that Naletilic, Tuta, in fact, was one of
6 the top Bosnian-Croat leaders in all of Herzegovina with ready access to
7 and dealings with other members, both political and military, of the top
8 Bosnian-Croat hierarchy. You will hear how Tuta met with the key leaders
9 of the Bosnian-Croat, of Herceg-Bosna. In fact, you will hear how he had
10 direct links with senior officials in the Republic of Croatia. You will
11 hear evidence that Tuta regularly travelled to Croatia, in fact, to meet
12 with the Croatian Minister of Defence Gojko Susak, and that Susak likewise
13 travelled a number of times to Naletilic's headquarters in Siroki Brijeg.
14 Second accused, of course, is Vinko Martinovic, Stela. He was
15 born on 21st of September, 1963 in Mostar. He is, again, a Bosnian-Croat
16 by birth who also has acquired Croatian -- that is, citizenship in the
17 Republic of Croatia. He was at all times material to this case a
18 commander, again, of the ATG Mrmak, which later changed its name to the
19 ATG Vinko Skrobo, and, of course, he was Tuta's subordinate.
20 In any of the HVO units, and for that matter, the units on all
21 sides, these units had their own patches and insignia. This was a patch
22 worn by the soldiers of the members of the Vinko Skrobo ATG, which you
23 will then see on the bottom part of the badge in the blue ribbon, again,
24 the -- on the right side Kaznjenicka Bojna, Military Convicts' Battalion.
25 The evidence will show that this unit, commanded by Martinovic,
1 was in a section of West Mostar or near the confrontation line along a
2 line on the Bulevar, and that his headquarters was in a building on
3 Kalemova Street. You will hear much more about this as the trial
5 The accused are charged under both 7.1 and 7.3 of the Tribunal
6 Statute, in all the counts on which they are charged. Of course, as Your
7 Honours will know, individual criminal responsibility under Article 7.1
8 involves planning, instigating, ordering, committing or otherwise aiding
9 and abetting in the planning, preparation of execution of the acts or
10 omissions charged in the amended indictment. Under Article 7.3, on the
11 other hand, a superior -- in this case, a superior military officer -- is
12 responsible for the acts of his or her subordinates if the superior knew
13 or had reason to know that his or her subordinate was about to commit a
14 crime or had done so, and the superior failed to take the necessary and
15 reasonable measures to prevent such acts or to punish them afterwards.
16 In terms of Article 7.3, responsibility, the evidence will show
17 that Mladen Naletilic was the commander of the Convicts' Battalion and, in
18 all respects acted as its military superior. He was involved in planning
19 and carrying out its military operations. He oversaw and managed its
20 finances and logistics. He coordinated its dealings and operations with
21 other HVO units and also units of the Republic of Croatia. He exercised
22 his authority over members of the Convicts' Battalion by meeting with his
23 direct subordinates, his senior officers, and subcommanders on virtually a
24 daily basis. He frequently interacted with the rank and file soldiers.
25 He visited various Convicts' Battalion bases of operation; and indeed, he
1 acted as a field commander himself on various occasions.
2 The evidence will show that the HVO officers knew of the laws and
3 rules of war, such as the Geneva Conventions, and that Tuta had the
4 ability to both prevent and punish his subordinates' conduct.
5 Again as indicated earlier, Vinko Martinovic was the commander of
6 the Convicts' Battalion called the ATG Vinko Skrobo. He, in turn,
7 exercised superior military authority over his unit and soldiers, both
8 separately and in coordination with other HVO forces. As with Tuta, Stela
9 had the ability to prevent and punish his soldiers' conduct.
10 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Scott, I hate to interrupt you, but would you
11 please slow down a little bit. It is a very difficult time to the
12 interpreter and the typist.
13 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President. My apologies.
14 The Trial Chamber will hear evidence of crimes committed by
15 several of the more notorious subordinates of Naletilic and Martinovic who
16 were members of the Convicts' Battalion. For instance, the Chamber will
17 hear evidence concerning a man named Ivan Andabak, who was the deputy
18 commander of the Convicts' Battalion. The Trial Chamber will also hear
19 about several of Tuta's more notorious subordinates, such as Ernest Takac,
20 Dinko Knezovic, and Romeo Blazevic.
21 With that additional background, as I indicated before, allow me
22 please to circle back to, again, Sovici and Doljani. On the 17th of
23 April, 1993, again, only after one day after Ahmici, the accused Tuta led
24 the Convicts' Battalion and other HVO forces on an attack on the villages
25 of Sovici and Doljani in north central Herzegovina. Sovici and Doljani
1 are two small villages located close to one another in a remote mountain
2 area. According to the 1991 census, Sovici had 745 inhabitants, of which
3 approximately 70 percent were Bosnian Muslims. The same census indicated
4 that Doljani had approximately 1.000 inhabitants, and approximately
5 70 percent of that village being Croat.
6 On the morning of the 17th of April, 1993, the attack on Sovici
7 began. A small number of Bosnian Muslims attempted to defend the
8 village. There will be no dispute about that. But they surrendered after
9 only a few hours. HVO soldiers, including members of the Convicts'
10 Battalion, entered Sovici on the afternoon of 17 April, captured AbiH
11 soldiers were held at the Sovici school, along with other Muslim men of
12 military age and, ultimately, also elderly, women, and children.
13 A few photographs, again, to orient you. This is a photograph of
14 the valley that contains Sovici and Doljani. As you can see, it is a
15 relatively remote mountain area. I apologize for the glare. I don't know
16 if it's as bad on everyone's monitors as they are on this. This is an
17 aerial view again of Sovici, Doljani. Even though these photographs were
18 taken some time later, I think by the indication here, 1999, unless the
19 glare prevents it, you can see a huge number of the houses are still
20 destroyed; the roofs blown off or the houses burned down.
21 The aerial view of the location around the Sovici school. Parts
22 of the village around the Sovici school. Cemetery here. The Sovici
23 school is here, at which at one point approximately 450 Muslim civilians,
24 including women and children, were kept in the school, the Sovici school.
25 Little bit different angle. Close up again of the school,
1 showing, again, the Sovici school, the middle photograph. There has been
2 evidence already in the depositions that were taken some weeks ago, in
3 addition to these people being held at the Sovici school, that five Muslim
4 men were taken behind the school and executed.
5 As I indicated, in the days following the takeover, the successful
6 attack, the civilian inhabitants, the women, the children, the elderly,
7 were forced out of their homes and kept in Sovici with the men. During
8 this time, the houses of Bosnian Muslim inhabitants were burned, and a
9 Sovici mosque was destroyed. This is after the attack was over.
10 Systematic burning and destruction of property and religious
12 After the capture of Sovici and Doljani, an HVO command post was
13 established at a house in a small fish farm situated between the two
14 villages. Naletilic was present at the command post. Indeed, it was his
15 command post, or at least one of them. Photograph of what is marked as
16 Exhibit 8.9 shows the house and the fish farm. You will see the pools.
17 These facilities were used to raise fish.
18 There was at the time in question an additional building on this
19 side, which I am pointing to now, which has either been destroyed or
20 fallen down or been removed since the 17th of April, 1993. The Chamber
21 will hear evidence that many of the captured or arrested Muslim men were
22 taken to the fish farm where they were mistreated and beaten and tortured,
23 including, again, by the accused Tuta himself.
24 After several days, many of the men were removed from the village
25 and taken by buses to a prison at Ljubuski, which I have indicated to you
1 before and shown you on the map. I won't stop now to show the map again,
2 but taken to Ljubuski.
3 The Bosnian Muslim women and children of Sovici and Doljani were
4 removed from their villages and taken to approximately six abandoned
5 houses in the nearby village of Junuzovici. They were forced to live in
6 these houses for several days until they were taken by the HVO by truck to
7 AbiH territory near Gornji Vakuf in central Bosnia. The evidence will
8 show that they were essentially removed from the trucks and buses and left
9 standing on the side of the road to fend for themselves, to find their way
10 to friendly territory.
11 In the following weeks, prisoners at the Ljubuski prison endured
12 regular beatings and mistreatment and were forced to perform labour for
13 Naletilic, including at his private estate, his own private estate, and
14 the construction of a swimming pool near Siroki Brijeg. Eventually, many
15 of these prisoners were transferred to the vast HVO Heliodrom detention
16 complex located at Rodoc, approximately 6 kilometres south of Mostar.
17 Here they joined thousands of Bosnian-Muslim prisoners from throughout the
18 region where they continued to suffer mistreatment at the Heliodrom and
19 were taken from the Heliodrom to perform forced labour on the
20 confrontation line in Mostar. The Chamber will hear extensive evidence
21 about that.
22 JUDGE LIU: You have to make a stop after the sentence. Because I
23 see the transcript is about half a sentence behind you.
24 MR. SCOTT: My apologies.
25 JUDGE LIU: Please continue.
1 MR. SCOTT: I am trying to speak deliberately, but I guess it is
2 still not slow enough. And again, my apologies.
3 Turning from Sovici and Doljani to the 9th of May, 1993, takes us
4 to the first major HVO attack on Mostar itself. Before the conflict,
5 Mostar contained a significant Serb population. Much of the Serb
6 population left or was removed from Mostar as a result of the Serb
7 attacks, that is by the JNA or the VRS attacks, on Mostar in the
8 Herzegovina region during 1992. I will not take the time to go through
9 them today, except for one photograph. The Court will see many
10 photographs of Mostar. You will see that it is in a beautiful physical
11 setting. It straddles the Neretva river, which flows south from Jablanica
12 through Mostar, ultimately empties into the Adriatic Sea. The part of
13 Mostar situated on the east or left bank of the Neretva River was the
14 oldest part of the city, the old medieval part of the city, and that was
15 predominantly Muslim. The west or the right bank of the Neretva River was
16 mixed initially so that many Croats and Muslims were living in West Mostar
17 as of April 1993.
18 Again, simply by way of overview and orientation- again, my
19 apologies for the glare, it seems to be rather bad - this is a photograph
20 that has been put together to establish a panoramic view. It certainly
21 shows no particular detail. It gives the Chamber an overall idea of the
22 geography, the topography and setting of Mostar. It is in a rather arid
23 area surrounded by rocky hills and mountains with, again, the Neretva
24 river flowing roughly through the middle of town.
25 On the morning of 9 May, 1993, HVO forces in Mostar attacked the
1 AbiH headquarters located in West Mostar at the Vranica building or
2 Vranica building. At the same time, HVO units throughout West Mostar
3 rounded up hundreds of Bosnian Muslim men, women, and children and forced
4 them out of their homes and apartments to the Velez football stadium in
5 West Mostar. After being assembled at the football stadium, the Bosnian
6 Muslims were transported or forced to walk to the Heliodrom complex
7 6 kilometres south or were taken to other detention facilities.
8 As I mentioned earlier, the Heliodrom was a former Yugoslav
9 People's Army or JNA military complex containing barracks, a prison, and
10 other facilities that were then used to detain hundreds of Bosnian
11 Muslims. In the afternoon of 10th of May, on the second day of the
12 attack, the members of the AbiH who were still inside the Vranica building
13 were overcome by and surrendered to the HVO.
14 This is a photograph, Exhibit 16.4, of the Vranica building,
15 again, showing some of the battle damage, shelling, impacts of shells and
16 holes that happened during the attack.
17 The evidence will show that the accused Naletilic was present when
18 these prisoners were removed from the building and taken away to a place
19 called the Tobacco Institute in Mostar, which was an HVO base of
20 operations. And you will hear that he was there, and how these prisoners
21 were brought before him, Tuta, and how he, Tuta, personally beat and
22 abused several of these prisoners in the presence of other HVO officers
23 and his subordinates. In fact, the evidence will show that he ordered
24 that a group of these prisoners be executed on the spot, and it was only
25 because of the intervention of another HVO soldier that these men were
1 not, in fact, killed.
2 Many of these men were then taken to the Convicts' Battalion
3 Headquarters in Siroki Brijeg. There, they were subjected to severe
4 beatings, and many of them were forced to work at various frontline
5 positions and, again, on Tuta's personal Siroki Brijeg villa. Many of
6 them were subsequently transferred to the Heliodrom complex and, again,
7 were taken from there to perform various types of forced labour.
8 Now, the evidence will show that, as to the events on the 9th and
9 10th of May, 1993, most - not all, but most - of those Bosnian Muslims who
10 were arrested were only held for a relatively short time, approximately
11 two weeks. Most of them were subsequently released when the HVO and the
12 AbiH signed a cease-fire agreement.
13 I am next going to show the Chamber what has been marked as
14 Exhibit P11. This has been prepared by the Prosecution. Actually, there
15 are several different versions of this, but you are going to hear so much
16 evidence about Mostar and the streets and what happened on this street,
17 what happened in this building, that we have prepared this Exhibit P11,
18 showing the major streets of Mostar. There is also, as you can see,
19 various key locations are numbered 1, 2, 7, 8, et cetera. There is a key,
20 a legend, in this part of the exhibit. For example, Number 1 is the
21 Health Centre, et cetera. You will also see a small insert map which
22 shows the location and relationship of the Heliodrom to the Mostar.
23 And around the perimeter of Exhibit P11 are photographs at each of
24 the referenced locations. So if you want to see what does site number 1
25 look like, you can go to picture number 1. If you want to look at site
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
14 English transcripts
1 number 2, obviously you can go to photograph 2, and that will hopefully
2 provide the Chamber with some assistance. Obviously, these are quite
3 small. Behind P11, which will be available to Your Honours, will be an
4 A4-size photo which will be available for each of these locations.
5 The evidence will show that on the 9th of May, 1993, the
6 expulsions began of Bosnian Muslims, or at least greatly escalated, from
7 West Mostar at the hands of HVO units. Bosnian Muslim residents of West
8 Mostar were forced out of their houses and flats, often at gunpoint, by
9 HVO soldiers. They were taken to the confrontation line, that is, the
10 dividing line between the Muslim forces and the Croat forces, and forced
11 to walk towards or into East Mostar. The manner in which these evictions
12 were carried out, Your Honours, became increasingly brutal during the
13 summer of 1993, and you will hear evidence that units of the Convicts'
14 Battalion, and in particular the Vinko Skrobo ATG, under the command of
15 the accused Stela, were among the leading perpetrators of the forced
16 eviction of hundreds of Bosnian Muslims across the Neretva River into East
18 Now, in terms of -- again you will hear a great deal of testimony
19 and evidence about the confrontation line. I'm going back to
20 Exhibit P11. Before I do that, I'm going to turn the map and orient it
21 again with the top of the map being north. You will see the Neretva River
22 flowing, then, from the top of the city to the bottom of the map. And as
23 we said earlier, then, the right bank, or East Mostar, was the Muslim part
24 of the city, the left bank, or West Mostar, being the Croat part of the
1 Now, what I've just said is not entirely true because in fact the
2 Bosnian Muslims were able to hold a small number of blocks, a small number
3 of streets, on the west side of the river. And in fact, the confrontation
4 line that was developed and was static for some time follows this yellow
5 line down what's called the "Bulevar" and then zig-zags, if you will,
6 along Santiceva Street. That became and was for months the confrontation
7 line that ran through Mostar; most or all of the Muslims being on the east
8 side and the Bosnian Croats being on the west side.
9 In fact, while we're on this subject, let me show you some
10 additional materials. I've put on the overhead Exhibit 14.4. This street
11 running along here is the Bulevar. Looking down on part of the
12 confrontation line, you'll notice on this side, these buildings - and
13 again this photograph is taken in 1999, more than six years after the
14 summer of 1993 - and these buildings are still essentially just burned out
15 or bombed shells. This is called the "Health Centre." This will be
16 extremely important to the case, because this part of the line, this part
17 of the confrontation line on this side, was the area under the area of
18 responsibility for the accused Martinovic and the Vinko Skrobo ATG. His
19 headquarters, that is, the accused Stela headquarters, was in a building
20 off this way, not very far from the Health Centre and this intersection.
21 Another view of the Health Centre from a ground view. The same
22 pink building. Of course, again, the building has been substantially
23 rebuilt and refurbished since the war, although you can still see a lot of
24 war damage around the building. This is that same intersection with the
25 accused Martinovic's area of responsibility extending along this street,
1 running essentially from right to left across the photograph in front of
2 the Health Centre.
3 This is a picture of the Bulevar, showing again the confrontation
4 line itself. These bombed-out buildings on this side, and in fact on both
5 sides - and again to orient you, the pink building down here is again the
6 Health Centre, so we're looking down the Bulevar in the direction of the
7 Health Centre where Stela's -- part of Stela's area of responsibility - we
8 can see that this is literally part of the confrontation line between
9 Mostar, and for months the two sides were this far apart, firing at each
10 other with small-arms fire, tanks, artillery, mortars, being literally
11 only a few metres from each other. Many of the buildings were destroyed
12 entirely. Of course, a few of them are still standing. Finally, one more
13 photograph again just to give you an idea what the confrontation line
14 looked like.
15 In June 1993, at the end of June 1993, the second mass wave of
16 arrest by the HVO of Bosnian Muslim civilians commenced and set off a
17 further intense period of conflict in Mostar. On that day or about that
18 time, the end of June, there was an ABiH attack by the Bosnian Muslim
19 forces on an HVO facility known as "the Northern Barracks" or "the North
20 Camp" north of Mostar. There will be no dispute about that. But in
21 response to that attack, the HVO unleashed a wave after wave of mass
22 arrest of Bosnian Muslims throughout East and West Mostar, primarily, of
23 course, in West Mostar, forcing them into East Mostar. Bosnian Muslim
24 males were imprisoned in various HVO detention facilities located
25 throughout Herzegovina, and again you will hear about many of these
1 locations, and you've heard about some of them already.
2 Unlike the first set of arrests on the 9th and 10th of May, the
3 prisoners now were held for a long time. Many of them were not released
4 until the Washington Agreement in approximately March 1994. So many of
5 them were held for some eight, nine, eleven months.
6 As previously mentioned, the HVO practice of forcibly evicting
7 Bosnian Muslims from West Mostar started on the 9th of May but continued
8 thereafter, and especially after the 30th of June. Often the Bosnian
9 Muslim women, children and elderly would be forced out of their flats,
10 thrown out of their flats in West Mostar, made to cross the river to find
11 their way, sometimes under -- often under hostile fire, being shot at as
12 they were trying to move themselves or find their way into East Mostar,
13 the Martinovic and the Convicts' Battalion, ATG Vinko Skrobo again leading
14 the participants in this conduct. The ultimate effect of all this was to
15 cleanse virtually the entire Bosnian Muslim population out of the West
17 Forgive me, Your Honours. In light of the time, I'm trying to
18 edit down a bit as I go on some of the things we've talked about so far.
19 What the Chamber should please respectfully appreciate as one of
20 the effects of forcing these Muslim civilians into East Mostar is that the
21 conditions in East Mostar itself, which is now the completely besieged
22 enclave, become worse and worse. More and more Bosnian Muslims are forced
23 into this small section of town. They are subject to constant shelling,
24 constant sniping. There is starvation. Humanitarian aid is blocked by
25 the HVO and prevented from entering that part of the city.
1 The Court will hear extensive evidence that along the
2 confrontation line, Bosnian Muslim prisoners, men who had been arrested or
3 imprisoned either as former combatants or as civilians, were forced to
4 work on the confrontation line and to carry out various tasks such as
5 building fortifications for the HVO, digging trenches, carrying
6 ammunition, retrieving bodies, doing all sorts of things in the midst of
7 hostile gunfire, in fact often crossfire between the two sides. You will
8 hear about how these Muslim prisoners, time after time, were either
9 wounded and some of them killed. And the evidence will show that the
10 accused Tuta, Martinovic, both were aware of this practice, condoned the
11 practice, and in fact directed the practice.
12 I'm going to turn to the attack on Rastani. On the 23rd of
13 September, 1993, the attack on Rastani occurred again by HVO forces under
14 the command of Tuta. Rastani is about four kilometres north of Mostar. I
15 showed you on the map, I think it was P2, this morning two photographs of
16 Rastani. Again just to orient the Court a bit, a silo, a grain silo area,
17 also a power plant up here, but various scattered houses and villages --
18 excuse me, houses throughout the village area. Exhibit 34.7 is just
19 another similar photograph. The evidence will show that Rastani in fact
20 was the scene -- was the location of intense fighting between the Bosnian
21 Croats and Bosnian Muslims on at least three separate occasions, although
22 only one of these attacks is specifically charged in the amended
23 indictment, and that is in September of 1993. On that date, the Convicts'
24 Battalion and other units under Tuta's command attacked Rastani with the
25 aim of recapturing it from the AbiH. The evidence will show that, after
1 the attack, Tuta's units again deliberately burned and destroyed Muslim
2 homes in the village of Rastani.
3 There will also be evidence on a topic that we have not discussed
4 yet but we will talk to in the course of this Opening Statement, that also
5 Bosnian Muslim prisoners were used as human shields; that is, they would
6 be taken and forced to advance or take positions ahead of attacking HVO
7 forces in order to shield the HVO forces from fire or, in fact, to have
8 the AbiH forces shooting, if you will, at their own men. And the evidence
9 will show that, in the instance of Rastani, that the accused Tuta engaged
10 in that practice and used Bosnian Muslim prisoners as human shields.
11 Now, let me turn to the amended indictment and the charges
12 therein. The amended indictment charges the accused Naletilic, Tuta, and
13 Martinovic, Stela, with various crimes against Bosnian Muslims in the
14 Mostar and Herzegovina region during 1993 and early 1994, in violation of
15 the Tribunal Statute Article 5, Crimes Against Humanity, Statute Article
16 2, Grave Breaches of the Geneva Conventions, and Article 3, Violations of
17 the Laws and Customs of War. The crimes charged fall into four basic
18 categories; that is: Persecution, Count 1; expulsion and unlawful
19 transfer of Bosnian Muslims from their homes, apartments and villages,
20 Count 18, the extensive destruction and plunder of Muslim homes, property
21 and religious institutions. Counts 19 to 22, and the killing, inhumane
22 and cruel treatment of Bosnian Muslim prisoners and detainees which are
23 charged throughout Counts 2 through 17. I will talk first about Count 1.
24 The Chamber has already heard much of the evidence that underlies
25 and supports the charge of Count 1 of persecutions. It encompasses, if
1 you will, the entire course of conduct and pattern and practice of events
2 between April of 1993, continuing until early 1994 in Mostar and other
3 parts of Herzegovina. In those locations and throughout that period,
4 Naletilic and Martinovic, together with other leaders, agents and members
5 of the Croatian Defence Council and Republic of Croatia military forces,
6 planned, instigated, ordered, or committed, or aided and abetted the
7 planning, preparation, or execution of a crime against humanity by
8 persecuting Bosnian Muslims on political, racial, ethnic, or religious
9 grounds, and again by the following means: expelling, forcibly
10 transferring and unlawfully confining Bosnian Muslims; destroying,
11 devastating and plundering Bosnian Muslim homes, property and religious
12 institutions; and subjecting Bosnian Muslims to torture and inhumane acts,
13 inhuman and cruel treatment; murdering and wilfully killing them and
14 causing them great suffering; all additionally charged in Counts 2 to 17.
15 I'm not going to talk further about the events in Sovici and
16 Doljani. I think the Chamber has now heard quite a bit about that in
17 several instances. But that is certainly part of what formed the
18 underlying conduct of persecution. The same can be said about the conduct
19 that took place in Mostar from May 9th of 1993, continuing into the early
20 part of 1994, and the terrible, terrible things that were done to the
21 Bosnian Muslim population there, all part of a course of conduct and
22 persecution directed against the Bosnian Muslims.
23 One other location I will stop and mention at this point you've
24 heard already is the Heliodrom. Again, the Heliodrom is a large former
25 JNA Yugoslav People's Army military base which was then taken over and
1 used extensively by the HVO, and large portions of it were used
2 essentially as a prison or detention camp. And that is -- we have one
3 aerial view here on Exhibit 20.2. This is again approximately six
4 kilometres south of Mostar in a wide-open plain, various military
5 buildings, barracks. There's a landing strip running along this side, or
6 helicopter pads, hence the name "Heliodrom," and there's a series of large
7 hangars that go off, down off the photo to the right and other photographs
8 would show. But this gives you an overall idea of what the Heliodrom
9 looked like.
10 By all of that conduct, each of the accused committed persecution
11 as charged in Count 1 of the indictment, Crimes Against Humanity.
12 The next grouping of charges or conduct is under one charge, and
13 that is Count 18, forcible transfer. I'm going, for the purposes of the
14 Opening Statement, to jump, if you will, from Count 1 to Count 18 for this
15 reason, and that is that I think, on further reflection, it might be a
16 more logical order, because in fact it all started, if you will, with the
17 forcible transfer.
18 When Muslim men, women and children were thrown out of their homes
19 and evicted from their villages, that is when the crimes started, and the
20 other crimes flowed, if you will, from that. In large measure, the very
21 first act of persecution with which Naletilic and Martinovic are charged
22 is the forcible transfer, arrest, expulsion and eviction of Bosnian
23 Muslims in Herzegovina. As I say, many of the other crimes -- many of the
24 other counts flow from the arrest and expulsion of the Muslim people.
25 Very often it was immediately after that, as charged in what might be
1 called "the property destruction counts," that their homes and property
2 was destroyed. It was immediately after that when they were expelled, the
3 mosques were destroyed. It was immediately after that that they were
4 mistreated, abused, beaten, killed. The evidence will show that both of
5 the accused, Naletilic and Martinovic, were again leading perpetrators of
6 this conduct. That is again charged in Count 18, unlawful transfer of
7 civilians, a Grave Breach of the Geneva Conventions in violation of
8 Statute Article 2(G), 7(1) and 7(3).
9 The next set of crimes or counts charged in the indictment are
10 Counts 19 to 22, destruction and plunder of property. They charge
11 Naletilic and Martinovic with various property crimes arising from the
12 conduct of the Convicts' Battalion and the Vinko Skrobo ATG in Sovici,
13 Doljani, Mostar and Rastani. The evidence again will show that after the
14 capture of Sovici and Doljani, the houses and the local mosque were
16 I have not focused very much up until this point in time, but I'll
17 mention now that, in addition to destruction, there was also widespread
18 plundering. That is, often before the houses would be destroyed, the HVO,
19 including the forces under the command of Tuta and Stela, would enter the
20 Muslim houses and loot them, carry away virtually anything that could be
21 carried out. Televisions, refrigerators, clothing, whatever could be
22 carried out and looted was often -- that was often done. And finally
23 again in Rastani, on the 23rd of September, 1993, Tuta's forces again
24 destroyed Bosnian Muslim homes in the village.
25 Naletilic is charged in Counts 19 and 20 and 22 with these
1 crimes. Count 19 is the extensive destruction of property, a Grave Breach
2 of the Geneva Conventions. Count 20 is wanton destruction not justified
3 by military necessity, a Violation of the Laws or Customs of War. Count
4 22 is the seizure, destruction, or wilful damage done to institutions
5 dedicated to religion, a Violation of the Laws and Customs of War.
6 The Chamber should note, please, that the accused Martinovic is
7 not charged in Counts 19, 20, or 22. However, both Naletilic and
8 Martinovic are charged with plunder in Count 21. Again, as I mentioned a
9 moment ago, this is based on the widespread looting of Bosnian Muslim
10 houses, particularly in West Mostar. This is charged in Count 21 as the
11 plunder of public or private property, a Violation of the Laws and Customs
12 of War.
13 That leaves us with a large group of counts directed essentially
14 to the abuse, mistreatment - well, it just goes on and on - killings of
15 Bosnian Muslim prisoners. That conduct is charged in Counts 2 through 17
16 of the amended indictment. I'm going to say a bit more about these.
17 We've talked now at some length about Sovici and Doljani and Rastani, but
18 we now come to, if you will, more information about how -- the conduct
19 that actually occurred on and about and in the area of the confrontation
21 The evidence will show that both Naletilic and Martinovic knew of
22 and were involved at the Heliodrom and the other prison camps and
23 facilities that I described to you this morning. These were not secrets
24 to them. They knew of them, they knew the prisoners were there, they knew
25 the prisoners were being used in this way, and indeed they used the
1 prisoners in this way themselves. The evidence will show, in fact, that
2 it became a regular and wide practice engaged in by the accused, Naletilic
3 and Martinovic, and their units to use Bosnian Muslim prisoners to build
4 and repair defences and fortifications, to carry ammunition, again to
5 retrieve dead bodies under the most hazardous of conditions, exposing them
6 to hostile fire on a virtually daily basis.
7 The particular area that I've pointed out to you already on the
8 confrontation line was particularly the responsibility of the accused
9 Stela in the area of the Health Centre, running along the Bulevar, as I
10 showed you in the photographs. As I mentioned to you, at times Muslim
11 prisoners were also used as human shields to draw fire from the opposing
12 AbiH forces in order to reveal positions. They would draw fire on Muslim
13 prisoners so they could then fire back at the AbiH positions, and that is
14 another way in which the prisoners were used. Other prisoners were
15 actually recruited, if you will, and forced to participate in looting.
16 Not only did the HVO loot Muslim properties, they used Muslims prisoners
17 to do it. Muslim prisoners would be sent into Muslim homes to loot and
18 carry away property.
19 From May 1993 to January 1994, Naletilic repeatedly visited the
20 Heliodrom camp and the bases of the Convicts' Battalion in the city of
21 Mostar, where he met his subordinates and the detainees. Naletilic had
22 knowledge of the use of prisoners and detainees in this way. And as I
23 mentioned earlier, he certainly knew about it and certainly carried the
24 practice himself. Indeed, some prisoners worked on his private house.
25 The same can be said for the accused Naletilic. He used, in fact
1 extensively, forced labour along his position of responsibility on the
2 confrontation line and again in connection with his private property.
3 Counts 2, 3, 4 and 5 charge this conduct as again Article 5,
4 Crimes Against Humanity, inhuman treatment, and Article 2, Grave Breach
5 and cruel treatment, and Article 3, Violation of the Laws and Customs of
6 War. Count 5 charges the use of Bosnian Muslim civilians and prisoners of
7 war, also as a separate violation of another Article of the Geneva
8 Conventions. I think on some of these, I'm passing over some of the
9 smaller points, if you will, that we'll certainly have a lot of time to
10 discuss in the weeks ahead.
11 Let me come to another aspect of this, which I've actually touched
12 on, but focus on it again for a moment. Counts 6, 7 and 8, which charge
13 murder, Crime Against Humanity, wilful killing, a Grave Breach of the
14 Geneva Conventions, and murder again as a Violation of the Laws and
15 Customs of War, relate to, again in many instances, this practice of the
16 way in which these prisoners were used and the way in which they were
17 killed by being used in this fashion, and it will be the Prosecution case
18 that both of these accused, Naletilic and Martinovic, knew of the
19 practice, condoned the practice, ordered the practice, and did so in such
20 a way and with such a high knowledge of the likelihood that prisoners
21 would be killed as a result of being put in these conditions that makes
22 them responsible, in fact, for murder and wilful killing. Let me give you
23 a few instances.
24 The evidence will show that on one occasion, Stela ordered 15 to
25 20 prisoners to put on camouflage uniforms and run towards the AbiH line.
1 Three prisoners were shot from the AbiH side, four or five prisoners were
2 wounded by Stela's soldiers. The evidence will show that Stela himself
3 was shooting at the prisoners. Another witness will testify that on one
4 day in July of 1993, six prisoners who were being used by the HVO as human
5 shields on the confrontation line were killed.
6 A particular incident that the Chamber will hear much about
7 occurred on the 17th of September, 1993. On that day, the HVO and the HV
8 launched another offensive along the confrontation line on the Bulevar and
9 Santiceva Streets in Mostar. As part of this offensive, Martinovic
10 himself ordered and directed the use of Bosnian Muslim prisoners to act as
11 human shields in furtherance of the attack. You will hear evidence that
12 the accused Martinovic was personally and directly involved in this
13 behaviour. In fact, on the 17th of September, 2001 [sic], a group of
14 Bosniak prisoners were taken to Stela's headquarters in Mostar, near the
15 confrontation line. As they were gathered there, Stela came forward, and
16 Stela personally addressed the group and said and ordered that four
17 prisoners be selected to act as human shields in connection with an HVO
18 tank attack. What Stela said -- what the evidence will show is the HVO
19 was going to send a tank across the confrontation line near the Health
20 Centre. That's the pink building that you've seen photographs of now. A
21 tank would be sent across the Bulevar approaching the AbiH positions. The
22 four Muslim soldiers, wearing camouflage uniforms that made them look like
23 HVO soldiers, and carrying wooden rifles that had been painted black so it
24 would look like they were carrying actual firearms that were given to them
25 by Stela's subordinates, would be made to cross the Bulevar alongside or
1 in front of the advancing HVO tank, again to either shield the tank from
2 fire, to the extent that the AbiH forces might have realised they were
3 shooting at their own men, or - and probably more likely - to draw AbiH
4 fire so the tank could then direct its fire against AbiH positions. The
5 evidence will show that four men, in fact, on Stela's orders were
6 selected. They were taken aside, they were given the uniforms, they were
7 told to carry the black wooden rifles. One of them, perhaps not
8 surprisingly, one of the original four fainted from fear, and Stela
9 ordered another prisoner be selected to take his place. The prisoners
10 were then taken to the Health Centre, the pink building in the photographs
11 I've shown you, and there again Stela was there. Stela told them what to
12 do. "Go out in front of the attack. It will be approximately 12.00
13 today. Walk with the wooden rifles in front of the tank, and that's what
14 I want you to do." And in fact Stela even made a promise to them, if they
15 survived. He said, "If this operation is successful and if you survive,
16 you'll be released in 48 hours." Miraculously, you will hear evidence
17 that these four did survive and actually escaped to AbiH positions on the
18 other side of the street, although that is certainly not what they
19 expected. In fact, what you will hear is the witnesses -- in fact, some
20 of these very men will be witnesses, and they will tell you as they went
21 out on that confrontation line, they were waiting to be killed. They
22 thought the next bullet would kill them. And in fact they prayed -- one
23 of them said, "I just prayed for instant death. I didn't want to be
24 severely wounded and be left lying on the confrontation line. I just
25 prayed that I would be killed instantly."
1 On the same day, there was another incident on another part of the
2 confrontation line, or close by, where an additional 15 prisoners were
3 used to act as human shields, and unfortunately in that situation 10 of
4 the prisoners were, in fact, killed. The names of some of them are listed
5 in the indictment, paragraph 42.
6 We've talked about Rastani. I'm not going to come back to that
8 We've talked about Count 6, 7 and 8, and up to that point.
9 Let me turn now -- I know we're approaching a break. In fact,
10 Your Honour, I'm about to start a related but a different topic. I'm in
11 the Chamber's hands, of course, but if you would like to stop now, we
12 could pick up after the lunch break.
13 JUDGE LIU: Okay. I think this is a convenient time.
14 We'll adjourn to 2.30.
15 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.32 p.m.
2 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Scott.
3 Before you start, there is one thing I want to -- want you to
4 clear it up. Before the break, you mentioned that you are going to
5 withdraw three counts against Mr. Martinovic, namely Count 19, 20, and
7 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me, Your Honour. I don't think -- I'm sorry,
8 please. Let me just double check the indictment again. I may have --
9 it's not a question -- may it please the Court. It's not a question of
10 withdrawing. I think that in those particular counts -- well, I see
11 what -- okay, okay, I can see -- I can see where the -- where it could
12 appear that way.
13 JUDGE LIU: Because the indictment was written in that way.
14 MR. SCOTT: Yes.
15 JUDGE LIU: Yes. With two accused's names in the --
16 MR. SCOTT: Would Your Honours please allow me -- I appreciate now
17 in a way I didn't before, the Court's question. And if you will allow me,
18 if I can consult with my co-counsel this evening and give you a more
19 direct answer tomorrow. I think it's probably just the confusion caused
20 by the drafting rather than a real change, but if you will allow me to
21 talk about that overnight and give you a further answer tomorrow.
22 JUDGE LIU: I see. If you decided to withdraw those three counts
23 against Mr. Martinovic, we are expecting your written motions --
24 MR. SCOTT: If, in fact, that's our position, of course, that
25 would be something that would be significant enough that we should
1 probably do it on paper.
2 JUDGE LIU: I'm reminded of another matter. I would like to draw
3 your attention to your Pre-Trial Brief, page 16.
4 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE LIU: And the footnote, Number 11, at the bottom of that
7 MR. SCOTT: That's right.
8 JUDGE LIU: It says that the indictment does not charge Martinovic
9 with torturous charges in Count 9 and 10. We are not clear in the counts
10 against Mr. Martinovic at this moment.
11 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, your points are well taken. Let us
12 look at that further, and I will give you a definitive answer quickly.
13 JUDGE LIU: Okay. Probably tomorrow morning.
14 MR. SCOTT: Yes, I will try to.
15 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
16 You may proceed.
17 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, Your Honours, I think in reviewing my
18 notes through the lunch hour, I hope that we can conclude my comments in
19 about somewhere between 20 minutes to half an hour, so we are getting
21 We had arrived at about Counts 9 to 12 of the amended indictment.
22 This specifically focuses on the forms of mistreatment to the Muslim
23 prisoners that led to or rose to the level of torture and willfully
24 causing great suffering. The evidence will show that throughout this
25 period, Naletilic, again, knew about and was at the Heliodrom camp. He
1 knew about the Bosnian Muslims being held there; he knew about the
2 inhumane conditions in the camp, and he knew that Muslim prisoners there
3 were routinely beaten and mistreated by HVO members, including soldiers of
4 his own unit.
5 The evidence will also show that throughout this period, that is
6 approximately May 1993 until January 1994, as we mentioned this morning,
7 both Tuta and Stela repeatedly committed, aided, and abetted torture,
8 willfully caused great suffering, and -- this is particularly important, I
9 think, I submit to the Court -- by their example instigated and encouraged
10 their superiors [sic] to torture or cause great sufferings on Bosnian
11 Muslim detainees. The Chamber may appreciate that, particularly
12 Mr. Tuta's case, Mr. Naletilic's case, that as a relatively senior level
13 commander, he did not carry out all this conduct on his own, just as the
14 president of a large company would not -- doesn't make the items in the
15 factory; the people below him do that.
16 It is particularly important in this case as to the orders and
17 example that Naletilic provided to his own troops. And this is an area
18 where, by his own beating of prisoners in front of his own men, led by
19 example, and in this instance, condoned and instigated crimes by example.
20 The evidence will show that in connection with the attack on
21 Mostar on the 7 -- actually before the attack, some of the events and
22 steps leading up to the attack on the 7th of May, two days before the
23 attack itself, members of the Convicts' Battalion arrested in Mostar a
24 prominent Muslim individual, who has been identified in the amended
25 indictment as Witness B. This Witness B was then taken to Tuta's base of
1 operations in Siroki Brijeg; and at that location, again, as I mentioned
2 just a moment ago, Tuta personally and with his subordinates tortured and
3 severely injured Witness B.
4 On this one, I do want to pause and tell the Chamber, so there's
5 no confusion about this point, it's an unfortunate situation that the
6 newly-composed Chamber may not be aware of, that Witness B died of natural
7 causes on the 10th of August, 2000, last year. And, of course, therefore,
8 is not able to tell this story. The Prosecution will have to do its best
9 to present this story to you, this conduct to you without Witness B's own
11 The evidence will show that this conduct, this type of behaviour,
12 extended beyond Tuta, of course, and also to the second accused, Stela.
13 The fact that Stela behaved in this exact same way, brutally, repeatedly
14 brutalizing, dehumanizing Bosnian Muslim prisoners, again, not only
15 serious in its own right but by the example that he set in front of his
16 own men.
17 A couple of examples: A Muslim prisoner witness will tell you
18 that he was often taken from the Heliodrom to Stela's part of the
19 confrontation line near the Health Centre. The witness saw Stela at one
20 time beat a Muslim prisoner until the prisoner collapsed, after which
21 Stela picked up the beaten prisoner and stuffed him in a garbage can.
22 You will hear evidence that in July 1993, a Convicts' Battalion
23 unit commanded by Stela was forcing a group of Muslim prisoners to work
24 near the confrontation line on Santiceva Street in Mostar. One of the
25 Convicts' Battalion soldiers recognized a Muslim prisoner called Carsov as
1 his neighbour from Zepa. The Convicts' Battalion soldier went and spoke
2 to Stela. Stela could then be heard to say in a loud voice -- and my
3 apologies to the Chamber for the language. Stela was heard to say, "Kill
4 him, fuck him, get rid of him." The HVO soldier then returned from Stela
5 to where Carsov was and fired an entire magazine from his automatic rifle
6 into Carsov's chest from 2 metres away. Stela was waiting there with
7 other Convicts' Battalion soldiers 20 metres away, smoking and joking
8 around. They all saw the killing. Stela did nothing. No one said
10 There will be evidence from another witness that while he was
11 imprisoned at the Heliodrom complex, he and other Muslim prisoners were
12 frequently and severely beaten. The witness saw the accused Martinovic
13 five or six times at the Heliodrom. He saw Martinovic and his soldiers
14 beat Muslim prisoners and take them away for forced labour. The same
15 witness also saw the accused Naletilic twice at the Heliodrom, once in the
16 company of Martinovic himself. On both occasions, the witness and other
17 prisoners were beaten in Tuta's presence, while Tuta did nothing to
18 prevent or stop it.
19 There will be evidence of two Muslim prisoners being beaten in a
20 van while being taken to Tuta's headquarters in Siroki Brijeg, where the
21 witness was then beaten by several soldiers while being interrogated. The
22 beating lasted until the witness fainted. He was then taken outside in
23 front of Tuta's own headquarters, where he was left and beaten by passing
24 HVO soldiers. That is, he was simply taken out in front -- my apologies.
25 He was simply taken out in front of Tuta's own headquarters and left there
1 severely beaten, only to be further beaten by passing HVO soldiers.
2 Indeed, throughout this period, the beatings and torture of Bosnian Muslim
3 civilians and prisoners was a common Convicts' Battalion practice. The
4 evidence will show that not only did Naletilic and Martinovic instigate
5 and condone such behaviour, but that they knew or had to know that their
6 subordinates were about to commit such acts or had done so, and they
7 failed to take the necessary and reasonable measures to prevent such acts
8 or to punish them.
9 This conduct is charged in Count 9 of the indictment, torture, a
10 Crime Against Humanity; at Count 10, torture, a Grave Breach of the Geneva
11 Conventions. It is likewise charged in Count 11 as cruel treatment, a
12 Violation of the Laws and Customs of War, and in Count 12 as willfully
13 causing great suffering or serious injury, a Grave Breach of the Geneva
15 Now, that takes me up to Counts 13 to 17. These counts focus on
16 one particular victim. And a question that is similar to the question
17 that you asked me, Mr. President, on this one - and I apologise for not
18 being able to give you an immediate response on the others but I would
19 like to at least examine them - but on this one I can tell you that as to
20 Counts 13 to 17, these are charges only against the accused Martinovic.
21 Naletilic, Tuta, is not named in Counts 13 through 17. However, with
22 regard to these counts -- and we're coming to the end of my opening
23 statement, and this is really just one small story and, if I can say this,
24 Your Honours, it's really one story that is emblematic of many more like
25 it, so I will give you a few more details about this particular incident.
1 The evidence will tell you a story about an individual victim
2 called Nenad Harmandzic. He was a Bosnian Muslim born in Mostar on the
3 19th of February, 1947. He grew up. He became a police inspector with
4 the Ministry of the Interior in Mostar. On the 9th of May, 1993, like so
5 many other Muslim men, he was arrested. Not only was he arrested, but his
6 son was arrested with him. Harmandzic was beaten and transferred to the
7 Heliodrom, where he was initially held at that time for ten days. Like
8 many of the Muslim men in Mostar, Harmandzic was then released;
9 unfortunately, however, only to be arrested a few weeks later in a second
10 wave of mass HVO arrests starting on the 30th of June. He was again
11 detained at the Heliodrom.
12 In July 1993, Harmandzic was among a group of approximately 50
13 Muslim prisoners taken from the Heliodrom to Martinovic's Kalemova Street
14 headquarters in Mostar that day. Martinovic was there. He was present at
15 his own headquarters, exercising direct command, when a group of prisoners
16 including Harmandzic arrived. Harmandzic met Martinovic and was beaten at
17 that point to a point just short of death by Martinovic's subordinates.
18 The evidence will show, as far as we can tell, that he, the man, was still
19 barely alive, but he was severely beaten, almost to the point of death.
20 On that day, the day that Harmandzic was last seen at the Kalemova
21 Street headquarters, Martinovic told several of the other Muslim prisoners
22 -- he told them words to the effect, "Well, Harmandzic won't be going
23 back with you tonight, won't be going back to the Heliodrom tonight." The
24 evidence will show that later that same day Martinovic's subordinates
25 killed Harmandzic, caused his body to be buried in a park or cemetery a
1 short distance from Martinovic's headquarters.
2 Harmandzic's exact location at the time of his death is not known,
3 and the Prosecution wants to be candid about that at the beginning. We
4 don't have a witness that was there at the moment of death or know exactly
5 where he was at the time that death occurred. We know that he was
6 severely beaten in Martinovic's presence to the point of death, was then
7 taken away, and his body was found later. In fact, it was exhumed, and
8 you will receive evidence about the exhumation of Mr. Harmandzic and the
9 autopsy reports. In fact, in August of 1998, his body was exhumed from
10 Liska Park Cemetery. And again as I mentioned, this is very close, just
11 some metres from Martinovic's headquarters, and the autopsy concluded that
12 Harmandzic had been beaten severely and then shot in the head. This is
13 charged as essentially murder and wilful killing in Count 13, 14 and 15.
14 Now, for the reasons that I've stated, Your Honours, should the
15 Court find or conclude at the end of the Prosecution evidence that you do
16 not feel that you can, based on that evidence, convict Mr. Martinovic for
17 murder or wilful killing, he has been charged in the alternative in
18 Counts 16 and 17 with cruel treatment, a Violation of Laws or Customs of
19 War, and willfully causing great suffering or serious injury, a Grave
20 Breach of the Geneva Conventions. We submit, Your Honours, that the
21 evidence will show that at least that such occurs. If Martinovic cannot
22 be held ultimately responsible for his death, he was certainly responsible
23 for the conduct charged in Counts 16 and 17.
24 In closing on this, Your Honours - and I just have a couple of
25 comments about how we'll present our case - I just want to come back to
1 something that we mentioned this morning, and that is the existence of an
2 international armed conflict.
3 As we have stated previously and now in closing, the evidence will
4 show that at all relevant times the acts and conduct charged in the
5 amended indictment took place in the midst of an international armed
6 conflict and a partial occupation on the territory of the Republic of
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina. At all relevant times, the government of the Republic
8 of Croatia and its armed forces, including the HV, the army of the
9 Republic of Croatia, backed and supported the HVO, deployed its own units
10 in and around Mostar and other parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The HV,
11 the Croatian army, participated clearly in an armed conflict with the
12 armed forces of the government of Bosnia-Herzegovina from on or before
13 1993, continuing to at least February of 1994.
14 Now, that does bring me to my final comments. What we will seek
15 to do, in presenting the case to you, as much as possible, is to present
16 the case or the evidence in blocks or units so that we cover one topic or
17 event at a time as much as possible. I have -- my last thing that I will
18 show you is, if you will, a bit of an outline that we will essentially
19 follow or will try to follow, and if you will, these are the building
20 blocks of the Prosecution case.
21 We will start, hopefully, with our first witness this afternoon,
22 the background and introduction to the case. We will then move to the
23 attack on Sovici and Doljani. We will then move basically somewhat
24 chronologically to the Mostar confrontation line - excuse me - to the 9th
25 of May, 1994 attacks on Mostar, the expulsions, the Mostar confrontation
1 line generally, which will be a major part of the case that will then cut
2 across the rest of the case because so much happened there. Then you have
3 the 30th of June, 1993, the onset of the second large-scale arrest and
4 expulsions. You have then the topic of the treatment of prisoners
5 generally, forced labour, beatings, killings. Two particular subtopics of
6 that which are significant are the wooden rifles incident that I discussed
7 with you this morning that happened on the 17th of September, where the
8 men were sent out in front of the tank, and the second related incident
9 that same day, also on the 17th of September. And then finally in time,
10 the 23rd of September, 1993 attacks on Rastani. That will give you some
11 structure of what we hope to do in presenting our case.
12 Now, there are a number of reasons why we will not and cannot do
13 that quite perfectly. One of them is simply the matter of scheduling
14 witnesses and getting them to The Hague. All of the witnesses in a
15 particular grouping may simply not be available all at the same time.
16 Another aspect of the evidence is this: It is an interesting
17 feature of the case in some ways that many of these witnesses cross over a
18 number of different parts of the case. In fact, there will be situations
19 very close to what I'm hypothetically stating now but will in fact be the
20 case, and that is you may have a Muslim man who was first arrested and
21 detained in Sovici, who then is taken to the Ljubuski camp, where he's
22 mistreated. He then is taken to the Heliodrom. From the Heliodrom, he's
23 then taken to the confrontation line in Mostar to perform forced labour or
24 act as a human shield, and even after the Heliodrom, perhaps he's taken to
25 another HVO camp. So you can imagine how that one witness cuts across, in
1 a way, the whole case. And therefore if we were going to perfectly follow
2 this outline, of course, we might have to call that same witness three or
3 four times and just hear that part of his story and this part of his
4 story, and everyone knows we wouldn't do that because, for one, it
5 wouldn't be fair to the witness. It will also not be good use of the
6 Tribunal's travel budget. So in that sense we will call these witnesses,
7 and many of them will cut across all aspects of the case. Nonetheless,
8 this will be our basic structure that we'll try to follow in large
10 We expect to call somewhere between 65 and 70 live witnesses, as
11 best we can, in addition to the deposition evidence which you know has
12 already been taken, and in addition to the transcript evidence that has
13 been either already received or is the subject of motion from other
14 Tribunal cases. I say "65 to 70." It may be slightly more or slightly
15 less. And at the risk of being accused of being tactical, it has nothing
16 to do with tactics. But the Chamber will realise and come to realise,
17 perhaps, that getting these witnesses here is a difficult task. Some of
18 them tell you two weeks that they are coming, and then two weeks later
19 they are not coming, for a number of reasons. One is the security
20 situation and the continuing conditions in Mostar and Herzegovina. Some
21 of these witnesses are still afraid. If they come to The Hague and
22 testify, they are afraid of retaliation by Bosnian Croats that live close
23 to them. It's an unfortunate state of affairs, but it makes sometimes
24 getting the witnesses here quite difficult.
25 But that's roughly what we seek to do. We will try to present the
1 Prosecution case somewhere in the range of 65 to 75 live witnesses. In
2 the midst of these blocks or units, there will certainly be some witnesses
3 mixed in, and they would cover a number of issues in the case or some
4 particular aspect of the case that will, if you will, be mixed in in the
5 outlines that I have given you.
6 The prosecution, Your Honours, certainly makes this commitment to
7 each of you: We will present the case as best we can. It probably, at
8 the end of the day, will not be a perfect case. We will probably make
9 some mistakes. But I can tell you that we will present the case as well
10 as we can, effectively as we can, in compliance with the Rules of the
11 Tribunal and with your rulings as best we can. We submit that at the end
12 of the day, the evidence will tell a compelling story. The evidence will
13 tell a compelling story about how these two men committed terrible crimes
14 in Herzegovina in 1993 and 1994. Crimes against humanity. Grave breaches
15 of the Geneva Conventions. Violations of the laws and customs of war.
16 That is why at the end of this case, we are going to ask you to find each
17 of them guilty on all crimes with which they are charged.
18 I'm going to close with one final story. It's a witness who was a
19 Bosnian prisoner at the Heliodrom. He will tell you that he was
20 interrogated by Tuta himself at the Heliodrom on the 31st of August,
21 1993. He was taken to a large room where Tuta was already seated. Three
22 chairs were arranged in front of Tuta. The witness was made to sit in the
23 middle chair with one of Tuta's bodyguards on each side of him. When Tuta
24 asked the prisoner his name, one of Tuta's bodyguards hit the witness in
25 the head before he could even make an answer, the bodyguard saying, "You
1 have to answer what Tuta asked you." The witness was then repeatedly
2 beaten while Tuta interrogated him. The evidence will be that at one
3 point, Tuta said, "I was asked to release you --" to the prisoner -- "I
4 was asked to release you, but do you know that you are a dead man? Dead
5 15 times."
6 At one point, the man was hit so hard that he was knocked off the
7 chair and fell to the floor. Tuta apparently did say at one point, told
8 the soldiers, "Don't do that again." But the reality is, and the evidence
9 will be, that they continued beating him front of Tuta and nothing was
10 done. Tuta told the man -- as he was being sent back to his cell, Tuta
11 told the man, "You have to accept that this is Croatia." When the
12 prisoner was sent back, Tuta told him, "Pray and wait for death. Pray and
13 wait for death."
14 Thank you, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Mr. Scott. Does it conclude your Opening
17 MR. SCOTT: Yes, it does, Your Honours.
18 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Krsnik, at this stage, you are entitled to make
19 your Opening Statement, in accordance with Rule 84, or you may defer
20 making this statement until after the Prosecution's case.
21 What do you wish to do?
22 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Because of all that was said at the
23 opening of this hearing, I think it is quite clear that we will not be
24 making our Opening Statement now. We will do that when the Prosecution
25 completes its case because, by then, we will be better prepared to do so.
1 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
2 Does your client wish to make a statement according to Rule 84(B)
3 of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence at this moment, Mr. Krsnik?
4 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. My client will not
5 be making a statement according to Rule 84(B).
6 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
7 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] May I just ask Your Honour to be able
8 to make a short comment after my colleague, Mr. Seric, makes his
10 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Seric, you wish to make the Opening Statement on
11 behalf of your client now, or do you prefer to defer the Defence Opening
12 Statement pursuant to Rule 84?
13 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, Your Excellency, the
14 Defence of Vinko Martinovic has chosen, according to Rule 84, to make its
15 Opening Statement after the Prosecution completes its case and before the
16 beginning of the Defence case.
17 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
18 Did you discuss your client with the right of his making a
19 statement according to the Rule 84(B) of the Rules of Procedure and
20 Evidence? What's his choice?
21 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, we have spoken to
22 our client, and he has chosen to adopt this same position, that is, after
23 the completion of the Prosecution case.
24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. But I want you not to be under any
25 misunderstanding. Your client may make a statement right now. He cannot
1 defer his right to the later stage.
2 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] He will not be making a statement.
3 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
4 Mr. Krsnik, what are you going to inform the Trial Chamber at this
5 moment? Are you going to challenge the Opening Statement by the
7 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] No, that was not what I had in mind.
8 This will come in due time, and I hope we'll be able to do it very
10 I wanted to make a comment, but I've decided against it because
11 perhaps it will not be an appropriate time to make this comment. Maybe a
12 more appropriate time will arise later on. The comment had to do with the
13 witnesses. Once the actual case begins, there may be a moment that would
14 be more opportune for me to make that comment.
15 JUDGE LIU: Okay, thank you.
16 Mr. Scott, are you ready for your first witness?
17 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour, we are prepared to proceed, and
18 Mr. Stringer will handle the first witness. Mr. Jan Van Hecke.
19 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
20 Would the usher please bring in the first witness.
21 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, good afternoon, and good afternoon
22 to Your Honours. I'm Douglas Stringer. May I suggest, Mr. President,
23 that before the witness is brought in, there is a little bit of logistics
24 which might be taken care of before the witness is brought in.
25 For example, I would ask that the ELMO be moved over next to the
1 witness place, because he is going to be looking at some things on the
2 ELMO. And in addition, Mr. President, with this witness, if I may just
3 take this opportunity to inform you specifically what we intend to do,
4 which might be of help. This witness is first going to present the Trial
5 Chamber with a series of videotape images and photographs of many of the
6 places now which were referred to by Mr. Scott in his opening statement.
7 And those photographs, as well as a number of the maps which
8 Mr. Scott referred to, have been placed into binders, and what I would
9 propose to do at this time is to distribute one of those binders to each
10 of the Judges so that you will have each of those materials, photographs,
11 maps, in front of you while Mr. Van Hecke is testifying.
12 And if I could just follow that up, I don't think we'll get to it
13 today, but tomorrow Mr. Van Hecke will also be -- through him, the
14 Prosecutor will be tendering a number of documents into evidence. And
15 with Mr. Van Hecke, I propose to examine a limited number of those
16 documents, not all of them. And those documents have also been collected
17 into binders which were prepared to provide to the Trial Chamber. And
18 again, it may be on the theory, the hope, that it would assist you in
19 following the testimony, to have the documents themselves in front of you,
20 rather than having to read what's on the ELMO all the time.
21 So we could distribute those documents to the Trial Chamber now
22 also. Or, because I'm quite confident that we won't get into the
23 documents today, we could simply wait, and then give you the binders of
24 the documents tomorrow morning.
25 On that question, Mr. President, I'm in your hands. But at the
1 very least, I would propose now to distribute to the Trial Chamber what is
2 called Binder 1, which contains photographs and maps.
3 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
4 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. I believe the Registrar
5 has those. These would be the binders which are expressly called Binder
6 Number 1. And inside each of those, there are photographs and maps. And
7 for the record, Mr. President, this Binder 1 was distributed or provided
8 to our colleagues on the Defence side some weeks ago during the deposition
9 procedure. I believe that they have had some time to review all of those
11 JUDGE LIU: Good afternoon, Witness.
12 Would you please make the solemn declaration.
13 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I shall speak the truth, the
14 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
15 WITNESS: JAN VAN HECKE
16 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, you may sit down.
17 Mr. Stringer, before you examine your witness, I think you have to
18 remind your witness of speaking very slowly so that we could catch every
19 word he said, since you are speaking in the same language.
20 MR. STRINGER: I will indeed do that, Mr. President. We discussed
21 the importance of speaking slowly during the lunch break earlier today,
22 and I believe that the witness understands that it's important for both of
23 us to speak, to stop, to wait, and then to continue.
24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
25 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Examined by Mr. Stringer:
2 Q. Mr. Van Hecke, could you tell us, please, where you are currently
4 A. For the moment, I'm the head of mission for ICTY's Sarajevo field
5 office in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
6 Q. ICTY, that's the Tribunal?
7 A. That's the Tribunal unit.
8 Q. How long have you been employed as the head of mission at the
9 Sarajevo field office?
10 A. I started to work there in the beginning of June this year.
11 Q. And prior to that time, were you here in The Hague as an
12 investigator with the Office of the Prosecutor?
13 A. Yes, I was.
14 Q. Could you give the Trial Chamber, please, a brief resume of all of
15 your professional experience as an investigator, both at the Tribunal, but
16 also your experience prior to coming to the Tribunal.
17 A. I'm a Belgian, and I started to work in the Belgian Gendarmerie,
18 National Police Force, back in June 1978. I stayed in the Gendarmerie for
19 a bit more than 40 years until end of September 1982. And in October
20 1982, I joined the Judicial Police in Belgium, detective police force. I
21 first worked as an inspector. And when I got promoted to the officer
22 ranks in the Belgium police, I moved to the district of Leuven in '88
23 where I was the first year in charge of juvenile courts. And from '89,
24 for the serious crimes part in the district of Leuven.
25 Beginning of April 1995, I then joined the Tribunal as an
1 investigator, and I got promoted to team leader -- investigations team
2 leader of the Tribunal in March '97.
3 Q. I'll ask you just a couple of questions about your role as a team
4 leader. Within the Office of the Prosecutor, perhaps you could describe
5 for the Judges how the office is divided up in terms of the investigations
6 which it conducts.
7 A. Well, we have a number of investigation teams, each in charge of
8 an investigation, or more investigations eventually. Each investigation
9 team is headed by a team leader, investigation team leader, who works
10 alongside some lawyers, legal advisors who work on the team. Further on,
11 the team is composed of investigators, crime analysts, translator or
12 translators, and administrative support.
13 Q. Now, can you tell us just briefly what types of cases or
14 investigations you have worked on during your time as an investigator with
15 the office of the Prosecutor?
16 A. Well, as an investigator, prior to becoming an investigation team
17 leader - so from April '95 to March '97 - I worked in a team investigating
18 mainly the sniping and shelling in Sarajevo.
19 Q. And then you said you became a team leader in -- I believe in
20 March of 1997. Is that correct?
21 A. That's correct.
22 Q. And are you the leader of the investigative team which conducted
23 the investigation in this case?
24 A. Yes, I was.
25 Q. And are you familiar with the indictment in this case?
1 A. Yes, I am certainly familiar with the indictment.
2 Q. Have you ever testified previously here at the Tribunal?
3 A. Yes, I did.
4 Q. And when was that?
5 A. It was in early July 1996; more than five years ago.
6 Q. What proceeding was that in which you testified?
7 A. That was Rule 61 proceeding against Radovan Karadzic and Ratko
9 Q. Did that relate to the -- your work on the siege of Sarajevo?
10 A. Yes, that's right. I brought in evidence, the whole Sarajevo
11 case, let's say, in sniping and shelling and the siege.
12 Q. Now, in your capacity as the team leader or the team of the -- the
13 leader of the investigative team in this case, beginning in March of 97,
14 have you had an opportunity to visit and to conduct investigations in the
15 places which are included or which are mentioned in the indictment in this
17 A. Yes, I did. I went there on several occasions.
18 Q. And that includes Mostar, Sovici, Doljani, Siroki Brijeg, for
20 A. Yes, it includes all the places mentioned in the indictment.
21 Q. Did you also participate in interviews of witnesses who are
22 expected to testify in this case?
23 A. Yes, I did.
24 Q. And then do you know whether other members of your investigations
25 team conducted interviews as well under your direction?
1 A. Yes, they did.
2 Q. Okay.
3 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, we are first going to start to go
4 through and to show the Trial Chamber some images of many of the places
5 which are alleged in the indictment. We are going to, with your
6 permission, start out on a larger scale and slowly focus on the areas of
7 particular relevance to this case.
8 And I believe that the Registrar should have a binder for you,
9 which is Binder 1, which is the same one that was distributed previously
10 to the Judges. And I would ask that the Binder Number 1 be handed to the
11 witnesses at this time.
12 Mr. President, I was hoping that an easel would be available in
13 the courtroom for this, but it's not here. I think that it's not
14 necessary to really take a lot of time, but again this is just intended to
15 orient the Trial Chamber in respect of the locations in the indictment.
16 Q. Mr. Van Hecke, if you could, what has been placed in front of the
17 Judges is Exhibit P1, which is essentially a map of the entire former
18 Yugoslavia. And it's a rather large map. And in order to move things
19 along, rather than taking it out, I might just suggest that if you could
20 approach this map, I'm going to ask you just to point out a number of
21 locations for us just again so that we can be oriented.
22 And first of all, if you could just give us an outline of the
23 territory of what is now or what was in 1993 the Republic of Bosnia and
24 Herzegovina on this map.
25 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Stringer, the problem is that we have to have it
1 reflected in the transcript. Maybe could somebody say a few words about
2 the scope of this area, so that it could be reflected in the
4 MR. STRINGER: I understand. Perhaps if -- I'm in your hands on
5 how to proceed. I think the map, perhaps, speaks for itself. But what I
6 could do is just give the microphone to Mr. Van Hecke, and he could
7 perhaps make some statements about that, if that's acceptable to you.
8 A. Okay, this is the map of the Western Balkans published by The
9 Times, and more or less in the middle of the map you can see the Republic
10 of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
11 Q. And then the Republic of Croatia was also mentioned in the Opening
12 Statement. Could you just give us an idea of the positions now of the
13 Republic of Croatia?
14 A. Yes. The republic is here, so north of Bosnia-Herzegovina and west
15 of Bosnia-Herzegovina, so surrounding it from the north and the west.
16 Q. Okay. Just looking at this map, could you give us a rough
17 indication of the areas which are of relevance to this case, which are in
18 Western Herzegovina.
19 A. Well, then we look to this area mainly in the southwestern corner
20 of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
21 Q. Okay. Now, the position of Zagreb, which was the capital -- is
22 the capital of the Republic of Croatia?
23 A. Zagreb is here, in the north of Croatia.
24 Q. All right. And then finally in respect of Croatia, the position of
25 a place called Split, which is a place some witnesses may talk about in
1 this case.
2 A. Split is here on the Dalmatian Coast.
3 Q. Thank you. Now, I'm going to put what has been marked as
4 Exhibit P3 in front of you.
5 MR. STRINGER: Again, Mr. President, this was referred to by
6 Mr. Scott in the opening statement. Maybe if I could ask the usher just
7 to hold it up a little higher --
8 THE INTERPRETER: Mr. Stringer, you have to use the microphone.
9 JUDGE LIU: Microphone, you have to use the microphone.
10 MR. STRINGER:
11 Q. Mr. Van Hecke, if you could just indicate, first of all, what this
12 map is.
13 A. This is the division of the territory into municipalities.
14 Q. All right. And again, could you inform us, what is a
16 A. A municipality is an administrative division of the country, and
17 also the census of '91 was made according to the people in the
19 Q. Okay. And the municipalities involved in this case, again can you
20 just give us a general idea of where they are located?
21 A. They are located in this area on the map.
22 Q. Thank you. You can take your seat again now. And Mr. Van Hecke,
23 the next exhibit I want to direct your attention to is in the binder.
24 It's marked as Exhibit Number 2. Could you take that out, please.
25 MR. STRINGER: And, Mr. President, just for your information, this
1 is the map that we're going to refer to quite frequently during the direct
2 examination, and so it may be one that the Trial Chamber would like to
3 keep closer at hand because it's this map that we're going to work on with
4 the photographs and the videotapes.
5 Q. Now, on that subject of photos and videotapes, Mr. Van Hecke, are
6 you aware that during the investigation in this case, members of your
7 investigations team went into these areas and obtained photographs and
8 videotaped images of the areas of relevance to this case?
9 A. Yes, I'm aware of that.
10 Q. And have you seen these photographs and videotapes, have you had
11 an opportunity to review them?
12 A. Yes, I did.
13 Q. Now, before we start looking at those, just to be clear, the
14 conflict which is alleged in this case occurred in 1993. Is that when the
15 photos and the videos were taken, or were they obtained at a later time?
16 A. No, they were obtained many years later. So if I'm not mistaken,
17 they are forensic missions, or photo missions, or video missions took
18 place in September '99 and September of 2000.
19 Q. And finally, we're going to see some images taken from a
20 helicopter. If you could just tell us how the team was able to obtain the
21 helicopter and the services necessary to obtain that footage.
22 A. Well, to obtain this footage, we got logistical support from SFOR
23 providing us with a helicopter and a helicopter crew, and we also got the
24 assistance of a video team of the Dutch police to do that footage.
25 Q. Could you explain for us very briefly, what is SFOR?
1 A. After the Dayton Agreements end of '95, NATO put an implementation
2 force first into the country, IFOR. After a year, that was replaced by
3 SFOR, so a NATO-led stabilisation force, which is an abbreviation, SFOR.
4 Q. The first locations that we're going to focus on are the places
5 called Sovici and Doljani, and first of all, let me ask you if you're
6 familiar with those two places and their relevance as alleged in the
7 indictment in this case.
8 A. Yes, I am.
9 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, for your information, if you wish -
10 I'd be happy to, but certainly if you don't want me to, I won't - for each
11 of these places, I can direct the Trial Chamber specifically to the
12 relevant paragraphs of the indictment, which may assist in connecting the
13 places to the indictment.
14 Sovici is referred to, and Doljani, both are referred to in
15 paragraph 9, the Background section of the indictment. They are both
16 referred to in paragraph 25, which is part of Count 1 on persecution.
17 Paragraph 46 refers to these places as part of the Counts 9 through 12 on
18 torture and great suffering based on beatings of persons who were captured
19 at Sovici and Doljani. Sovici and Doljani are also referred to in
20 paragraph 53, which is part of Count 18, alleging the forcible transfer of
21 civilians from their homes as a Grave Breach. And finally, Sovici and
22 Doljani are alleged in paragraphs 55 and 56 of the indictment as places in
23 which destruction occurred, devastation of homes and the mosque there.
24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
25 MR. STRINGER:
1 Q. Now, if you could take Exhibit 2 out of the binder and place it on
2 the ELMO. Just so we all know, indicate the location of Sovici and
3 Doljani on this map, perhaps in relation to some of the larger places that
4 are in the area.
5 A. So here we have Sovici and Doljani. Jablanica is the closest town
6 to the two villages of Doljani and Sovici, and they are both part of the
7 municipality of Jablanica. Eastwards, you see Sarajevo, which is about 80
8 to 90 kilometres away from Jablanica. And Jablanica is on the main road
9 from Sarajevo to Mostar, and you'll see Mostar approximately 40 kilometres
10 south of Jablanica.
11 MR. STRINGER: Thank you. Now, Mr. President, with your
12 permission and hopefully with the assistance of our colleagues in the
13 video booth, I have a videotape that shows Sovici. It's only about 60 to
14 90 seconds in length, and what I would propose to do is to show that video
15 now - it's marked as Exhibit 4 - again just so you have an idea of what it
16 looks like in these places.
17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.
18 [Videotape played]
19 MR. STRINGER:
20 Q. Mr. Van Hecke, please feel free to give any commentary which might
21 assist in understanding the layout.
22 A. Okay. As you see there, the village of Sovici and Doljani are in
23 a valley northwest of Jablanica, so completely surrounded by the hills.
24 This is a picture of the village of Sovici, going from east to west or
25 from southeast to northwest. So Doljani and Jablanica would be on the
1 right-hand side of the screen, more or less where the village of Sovici
3 Q. And am I correct that this particular photo is being taken from
4 people who are standing on top of a hill, not from a helicopter?
5 A. Indeed, that's taken from the top of a hill, so going back from
6 northwest to southeast over the village now.
7 Q. So this is panning from Sovici in the direction of Doljani?
8 A. That's right.
9 Q. Do you know what that structure is there?
10 A. That used to be the mosque of Sovici.
11 Q. Okay. Now, Mr. Van Hecke, turning to the binder which is in front
12 of you, could I ask you to look at Exhibit 6, which is a series of
13 photographs. Have you had an opportunity to look over these photographs?
14 And there is also a map which is on the front of those.
15 A. Yes, I had the opportunity.
16 Q. Okay. And I want to ask you, if you could -- I've got two
17 photographs, 6.7 and 6.9, which I could just ask the usher to place on the
18 ELMO so you don't have to remove them. 6.7 first, can you tell us what is
19 shown in this photograph?
20 A. Well, you'll see part of Sovici in this photograph, and right here
21 is the Sovici school.
22 Q. And do you know the relevance of the Sovici school to the
23 allegations which are alleged in the indictment in this case?
24 A. Yes, I do.
25 Q. And just can you tell us what that's about?
1 A. That's the place where, after taking over of the village by the
2 HVO troops, people were imprisoned.
3 Q. All right. And then quickly, Exhibit 6.9, a different photograph,
4 just quickly tell us, what is Exhibit 6.9?
5 A. That's a zoom-in of the school in Sovici right here.
6 MR. STRINGER: Thank you. We can withdraw those --
7 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Stringer, you have to describe to us which
8 building is that school. You know, you cannot only say, "This is the
9 building of the school," so we could not find which one, you know. There
10 should be some descriptions here of this particular place, you know.
11 MR. STRINGER: You're absolutely right, Mr. President, and I
12 apologise. I think after you've seen so many of these photographs a
13 hundred times, you don't think about it anymore, and that's my fault.
14 Q. Mr. Van Hecke, maybe if you can describe the building which you're
15 saying is the Sovici school, for the record.
16 A. You want me to do it on 6.7 or 6.9?
17 Q. 6.7 is on the ELMO. You can use 6.7.
18 A. So approximately just above the middle of the photograph, we see a
19 long, wide building with a red roof, and that's the Sovici school on
20 Exhibit 6.7.
21 Q. And then in 6.9, just quickly take us to 6.9.
22 A. So on 6.9, exactly in the middle of the photo, we see again the
23 same long, wide building with the red roof, being the Sovici school.
24 Q. Thank you, Mr. Van Hecke. And now that was Sovici. The next
25 place is Doljani. And again if you could just come back to Exhibit 2,
1 just to refresh us in terms of the location of the village of Doljani.
2 A. So again when we see the map and we see the municipality of
3 Jablanica north of the centre of the map, you'll see the town of Jablanica
4 marked in red on the map. And northwest of it, next to the border with
5 the municipality of Prozor, you have first Doljani and then Sovici.
6 MR. STRINGER: Now, Mr. President, with your permission, I propose
7 to show another short videotape which gives images of the village of
8 Doljani. That would be Exhibit Number 7.
9 [Videotape played]
10 A. So this helicopter footage, east is again -- right is east and
11 left is west. The helicopter is turning.
12 Q. The place that's now being shown, which appears to be a fish farm,
13 or a pisces kultura, can you describe the relevance of that to the case?
14 A. Witnesses have told us that this was the headquarters of
15 Naletilic, Tuta, during --
16 JUDGE LIU: Just a moment.
17 MR. MEEK: May it please the Tribunal, the Defence for
18 Mr. Naletilic would have to object to this witness's testimony, other than
19 what he observed from the documentation and not any other evidence.
20 MR. STRINGER:
21 Q. Again, if you could just continue with describing what you're
22 saying perhaps for the moment, Mr. Van Hecke. If you could --
23 A. Well, we see the village of Doljani, with the big building which
24 you see is a school in Doljani. This road going up is the road going to
25 Sovici, further up in the valley.
1 Q. What direction are we moving now along this road?
2 A. Well, roughly said, northwest.
3 Q. In the direction from, say, what place to what place?
4 A. Well, if you take the road back, you would be in Jablanica, so
5 down. And then if we follow here, through Doljani and further on to
6 Sovici up in the valley.
7 MR. STRINGER: Thank you. Mr. President, just on the last
8 question, I'm not sure exactly that I understand the basis of the
9 objection. I think we're simply trying to make a connection between
10 places which are being shown and the allegations in the indictment. I
11 think the witness is in a position to do that. If he is going to make
12 statements or give a statement about what he's learned in the course of
13 the investigation, it may, in fact, be hearsay. But I think that it's
14 admissible, because there's not a strict ban on hearsay here. I don't
15 suggest that Mr. Van Hecke's testimony is the only testimony that you
16 should consider. I think, in fact, without testimony of the witnesses to
17 say these things, it has and should have very little effect on you. So I
18 think that I would propose to try to ask Mr. Van Hecke to simply say if
19 he's aware what is the relevance of this or that place to the charges in
20 the indictment, simply as a way to draw a connection between what we're
21 seeing and in the indictment.
22 JUDGE LIU: Well, I think I should ask Mr. Meek to explain what
23 the objection is. You know, I don't quite understand what you mean.
24 MR. MEEK: Your Honour, if it please the Tribunal --
25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for Mr. Meek, please.
1 MR. MEEK: I apologise. If it please the Tribunal, there is
2 earlier testimony in the first tape of Sovici and unsolicited statements
3 by this witness concerning events which he claims happened. This witness
4 was not present in 1993, in April of that year, when the events that are
5 alleged in this indictment occurred. That is my objection, Your Honour.
6 I understand that hearsay may and is admissible. However, I do not
7 believe that conclusions, bare conclusions or opinions, are appropriate
8 for this witness.
9 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Stringer, do you have any reaction to this
11 MR. STRINGER: I think that the witness is in a position, as the
12 lead case agent, to simply say how a particular place relates to what is
13 alleged in the indictment. I don't mean to suggest that his statements on
14 that should be dispositive and should be relied upon by the Trial Chamber
15 as substantive evidence that you would be relying on as part of a verdict
16 or a judgement in this case. He's familiar with the investigation, he's
17 familiar with the indictment, and if he's in a position because of that to
18 simply inform you how a particular place relates to allegations contained
19 in the indictment, I believe that he ought to be able to simply draw that
21 JUDGE LIU: Okay. Mr. Meek, I think the witness is trying to lead
22 us into the particular locations of this case. Of course he was not
23 present at the spot area where the alleged crime was committed, but even
24 the hearsay evidence has some probative values before this Tribunal. So
25 your objection is overruled.
1 Please continue, Mr. Stringer.
2 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. And continuing with
3 Doljani, first of all, I'm not certain that the Trial Chamber had a
4 sufficient opportunity to view the videotape because objections were
5 made. We could replay it if you wish, Mr. President, or I could move on.
6 JUDGE LIU: You may move on.
7 MR. STRINGER: Thank you.
8 Q. Mr. Van Hecke, then, for Doljani I directed your attention in the
9 binder to a series of photographs marked as Exhibit Number 8. Have you
10 had an opportunity to review these photographs? And if so, tell us what
11 they are.
12 A. Yes, I had the opportunity to review these photographs.
13 Q. And what are these photographs?
14 A. These photographs show the valley where Doljani is located, gives
15 general overviews of the village of Doljani, showed the destroyed school.
16 And I'm pointing at Exhibit 8.4.
17 Q. Let me just move you through. I would ask the usher to show you
18 two photographs on the ELMO, 8.8 and 8.9. Can you, Mr. Van Hecke, can you
19 simply tell us the relevance of this place as alleged in the indictment,
20 if you're in a position to say so?
21 A. Well, we see on this Exhibit 8.8 a building with some water in
22 front. This is a fish farm in Doljani alleged to be Mr. Naletilic's
23 headquarters in April 1993.
24 Q. Thank you. And then in Photograph Number 8.9?
25 A. That's again the same two buildings with the water in front, so
1 again the fish farm, but more zoomed in.
2 Q. Thank you. Now, in some of the other photographs, there's one
3 thing I think we should be clear about, in terms of events in Doljani.
4 There are houses and there is a fair amount of destruction that is
5 indicated in the photographs. The indictment in this case alleges events
6 which occurred in Sovici and Doljani in April of 1993. Are you aware of
7 subsequent military operations which occurred in that same area
8 subsequently during 1993?
9 A. Yes. There was a main attack from the AbiH or army of
10 Bosnia-Herzegovina, a counterattack at the end of July of 1993, so some of
11 this destruction you see did not necessarily happen during April of 1993.
12 MR. STRINGER: Just so it's clear, Mr. President -- well, I'll ask
13 it as a question.
14 Q. Since you're familiar with the indictment, does the indictment
15 allege that Mr. Naletilic is responsible for destruction which occurred
16 during July of 1993?
17 A. No, he's not.
18 MR. STRINGER: Thank you. Moving forward, Mr. President, we're
19 now going to take a look at the city of Mostar. We can withdraw these two
20 photos from the ELMO.
21 Q. And again coming back to the map which is Exhibit Number 2, so we
22 can just get an idea of the location of Mostar perhaps now in reference to
23 Sovici and Doljani, where is Mostar located?
24 A. So again we have here Sovici/Doljani as pointed out before on this
25 map. From Sovici, I estimate it's approximately 12, 13 kilometres to
1 Jablanica. And Jablanica, you come back on the main road from Sarajevo to
2 Mostar, going down south. So from Jablanica south on the main road, about
3 40 kilometres south, you reach the city of Mostar, so just under the
4 middle of the map.
5 MR. STRINGER: Thank you. Mr. President, Mostar, coming back to
6 the indictment, Mostar is referred to in many places in the indictment. I
7 could go through each of those if you wish, but I can say generally that
8 Mostar -- the significance of Mostar is the fact that it's the
9 confrontation line and crimes which occurred in the confrontation line as
10 alleged in Count 1, paragraph 32, and in Counts 2 through 8, paragraph 54,
11 and also the forcible transfer of civilians from West Mostar across the
12 confrontation line into East Mostar, which is alleged in paragraph 54 of
13 the indictment as part of Count 18.
14 Now, we have a videotape image of the confrontation line in
15 Mostar, which is marked as Exhibit Number -- I'm sorry, I'm getting ahead
16 of myself, Mr. President. I first am going to ask Mr. Van Hecke to look
17 at what's been marked as Exhibit Number 11, which is a map of the Mostar
18 centrum or the centre of the city, which was relied on in reference by
19 Mr. Scott during his Opening Statement, because with the assistance of
20 Exhibit P11, I want to ask Mr. Van Hecke some questions. And perhaps if
21 we could put that on the ELMO, it would assist.
22 Q. First of all, Mr. Van Hecke, let me ask you: This map, did you
23 prepare this map or did you have any involvement in the preparation of
25 A. No, I didn't.
1 Q. Have you had an opportunity to review the map?
2 A. Yes, I did.
3 Q. And using this map, if you would, based on the allegations in the
4 indictment, could you tell us perhaps a little bit about the layout of
5 Mostar and point out some of the areas on the map which are of relevance
6 to the indictment in this case.
7 A. Well, again when we see the map, the north is to the right and the
8 south to the left. So up is in the west, of course, and down the east.
9 Mostar is positioned around the Neretva River flowing through the town of
10 Mostar, and basically the area under the Neretva in this case, so east of
11 the Neretva or east of Mostar is basically part of the Muslim area or was
12 part of the Muslim area in Mostar. They were the position more up or
13 above the Neretva River along the west side, also called the right bank of
14 the river because the river is flowing south. It was mixed at the time
15 before the conflict and had mainly Croat but quite a significant presence
16 of Bosniaks too.
17 Q. Just for the record now, you're indicating the Neretva River,
18 which is flowing from right to left as we look at the screen, and then so
19 on the top or the west side is which side again?
20 A. Mainly Croat side.
21 Q. Okay. With a Muslim population?
22 A. With a Muslim population, yes.
23 Q. And then below the river or east, the east side of the river
25 A. Is mainly a Muslim population or Bosniak population.
1 Q. Now, the indictment in this case makes reference on a number of
2 occasions to the confrontation line in Mostar, and with this map, if you
3 could, just indicate the location of the confrontation line as it's
4 alleged in the indictment.
5 A. So under the big yellow part, which is a mountain, a hill
6 overlooking Mostar, you see a street called "Bulevar," so the
7 confrontation line mainly followed the Bulevar all the way along. Then
8 you see a square called "Spanske Drug" [phonetic], so the "Spanish
9 Square." Continue it a little bit further in the first narrow street then
10 to the right, continue the confrontation line, and then to go to Aleksa
11 Santic Street, almost to the end, and then go through the buildings to the
12 direction of Carinski Most.
13 Q. Now, so that generally speaking, the area in yellow gives an
14 indication of the location of the confrontation line in --
15 A. Yes, just an indication of the confrontation line.
16 Q. Now, can you just tell us where the two opposing sides were
17 positioned in the area of this confrontation line?
18 A. Well, in the case of this map, the HVO was positioned on the top
19 side of the Bulevar, and then Santiceva Street or Aleksa Santic Street.
20 The armija AbiH forces were positioned on this map just under the Bulevar,
21 so they were -- the confrontation line was where these two streets, the
22 Bulevar and Santiceva Street, just facing each other with a few metres
24 Q. Okay. So then the armija had this small area of terrain on the
25 west side of the Neretva river?
1 A. Indeed, there was an AbiH-held enclave on the western bank or
2 right bank of the river.
3 Q. Okay.
4 MR. STRINGER: I think with that introduction, Mr. President, we
5 could play the videotape, which has been marked Exhibit Number 13. And I
6 would again ask Mr. Van Hecke, if he could, as the videotape plays, just
7 to indicate for us how some of the locations on the videotape relate to
8 locations indicated on Exhibit Number 11.
9 A. So again, you see an overfly of Mostar. The green part on top is
10 mound that I spoke to you about earlier, with the Bulevar, the roads just
11 going under the mounds. So you are going -- the Bulevar is going from
12 south to north, being the confrontation line at the time. So the
13 helicopter is now turning to go straight north. On the top here, you see
14 that building which is the house of health, goes straight to the left. On
15 the right-hand side, you see the buildings where the armija positions. On
16 the left-hand side were the HVO positions. So you are following the
17 Bulevar. You see the difference between the lines was like 15 metres
19 The big building you see on the left-hand side of the screen is
20 the gymnasium of the school. On the right-hand top, you see the toll
21 bridge. Here, that narrow street that is at the middle of the screen now
22 was in front of the confrontation line. And then going left through that
23 rather narrow street, which is Aleksa Santic Street. And then at the end,
24 going through the buildings mainly, which is another direct straight line
25 to the next bit that you see, Sarintska...
1 Q. Okay.
2 MR. STRINGER: Now, Mr. President, we have a series of photographs
3 which come from that videotape which we could now look at, which would, I
4 think, again, make it a little easier to tie locations down.
5 Q. I direct your attention, Mr. Van Hecke, to Exhibit Number 14, a
6 series of photographs within the binder. And I'm first going to ask you
7 to look at Exhibit Number 14.3.
8 Okay, now, with the pointer, Mr. Van Hecke, you made a reference
9 to the health centre, I believe. And you also made a reference to the
10 gymnasium or the gymnasium. Can you, on the ELMO, point to those two
11 places and describe for the record where they are located.
12 A. I am pointing now to the house of health, Dom Zdravnja, which is
13 located on the photo a bit higher up from the middle of the centre of the
14 photo. It's a pink building, a bit special shape building, at the
15 junction between the two streets.
16 Q. And then the gymnasium?
17 A. The gymnasium is the big building here at the bottom of the
19 MR. STRINGER: Maybe, Mr. President, for the record, I could ask
20 the witness simply to circle those two places. We could put some letters
21 next to them so that the record would indicate more clearly.
22 Q. Mr. Van Hecke, could you put a circle around what you are calling
23 the health centre.
24 And you could write next to that HC, for Health Centre. And then
25 if you could circle the gymnasium.
1 Thank you.
2 Now, if you could, Mr. Van Hecke, what I would like to do very
3 quickly, going back to Exhibit Number 11, which is the map that we were
4 just looking at, can you show us the location of these two places on
5 Exhibit Number 11, just again so we are able to make the connection
6 between these two.
7 A. The place number 1 is the -- the place number 1 is a health
8 centre, and the place marked as number 2 is the gymnasium.
9 Q. Number 1 and number 2, you are referring to as on
10 Exhibit Number P11?
11 A. That's correct, yes.
12 Q. And on the photograph, which is now on the ELMO again, those same
13 two places on the photograph?
14 A. Yes, that's correct. So the one I circled, the pink building is
15 the health centre. The big one on the bottom of the photo is the
17 Q. Okay, thank you.
18 Now, the next photograph would be Exhibit 14.5. If you would turn
19 to that one, again, if you could just briefly describe the place that's
20 indicated in 14.5.
21 A. Well, again, we see the health centre here in the centre of the
22 photo. And in front of it, the fountain just at the junction of the two
23 streets here.
24 Q. Are you aware of -- the indictment makes allegations about this
25 location. Do you know what those allegations are?
1 A. Yes, I do.
2 Q. Could you tell us briefly, please.
3 A. It's alleged that Mr. Martinovic had commanded some of his people
4 from that centre, and also incidents that actually happened on the 17th of
5 September happened in the neighbourhood of this place.
6 Q. 17th of September?
7 A. 1993.
8 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, in the indictment, that would go
9 back to paragraph 41 and 42, events of the 17th of September, 1993.
10 Q. Now, Mr. Van Hecke, the next photo is 14.7. Just again, briefly,
11 now, if you could give us an indication, generally, what this place is.
12 A. Well, you see an overview of the Bulevar, looking from north to
13 south. So on the left-hand side of the photo, you see the positions at
14 the time held by the AbiH. On the right-hand side of the street, you see
15 the positions held by the HVO. And at the back of the photo, you see a
17 Q. And the next is 14.7. Was that 7? 14.17.
18 Can you tell us what this area is and perhaps how it relates to
19 Exhibit Number P11, which is the map.
20 A. What you see on the -- it's the top right of the photo. First you
21 see the Neretva River, the very top right, Neretva River. And then the
22 first real street you see with all the damaged houses, that's Aleksa
23 Santic Street, which is let's say the continuation of the confrontation
24 line after the Bulevar in Mostar.
25 Q. Could you just quickly show us that same location where it would
1 be found on Exhibit P11.
2 A. Yes, that would be here. So the place that you see as Number 6 on
3 this map is this big building here, which is Hotel Ero. So the street
4 goes from the top of 14.7 to the right, and that's this street marked in
5 yellow on Exhibit 11.
6 Q. Okay, so essentially 14.17 indicates the area of the Aleksa Santic
7 Street indicated on P11.
8 A. That's correct.
9 Q. And then 14.19, please. I am skipping one, just to... If you
10 could quickly indicate what's shown in 14.19.
11 A. Well, that's again the same street now taken from -- photo taken
12 from the other direction, so from the east side of Mostar. Here, you
13 again see, from left to right, Aleksa Santic Street. You still see a lot
14 of destruction there as a result of the warfare.
15 Q. Then at the very bottom left-hand corner of the photo, the bottom
16 left-hand corner of the photo.
17 A. Yes, you see Neretva River.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, it's 4:00. I'm ready to move to the
20 next location, or we can break, as you wish.
21 JUDGE LIU: We will adjourn until 9:30 tomorrow morning.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 4.00 p.m.,
23 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 11th day of
24 September, 2001, at 9.30 a.m.