1 Thursday, 15 November 2001
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.35 a.m.
5 JUDGE LIU: Call the case, please, Madam Registrar.
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: Before we start, is there anything to say by both
9 parties? Yes, Mr. Stringer.
10 MR. STRINGER: Good morning, Mr. President and Your Honours.
11 First of all, I have been informed -- I haven't seen it, but I have been
12 informed that the Trial Chamber granted the motion in respect of a
13 protected witness for closed session and that the Trial Chamber has also
14 decided that it would allow testimony of the witness of events which
15 occurred during the course of a forcible eviction. And I haven't seen the
16 decision, but I'm informed that that was the Trial Chamber's ruling. And
17 so if that is, in fact, the case, Mr. President, then I would proceed
18 along those lines.
19 JUDGE LIU: Yes, it is. I can confirm it. We made the decision
20 yesterday afternoon. I believe that soon you'll get the written copies of
21 this decision.
22 MR. STRINGER: Secondly, Mr. President, I have an issue that
23 relates to timing or the order of witnesses. There are a variety of
24 reasons why we're asking for this, but we would ask the Trial Chamber to
25 permit this witness, who I believe will be a pseudonym, MM, that the Trial
1 Chamber permit that witness to testify and to give her direct
2 examination. She is here and would be ready to begin right away. The
3 next witness after her is an open session witness named Jeremy Bowen, and
4 Mr. Bowen has informed us that it would be very important and he would be
5 very grateful if he could finish his testimony today and return to London
6 tonight so that he could return to his job.
7 So we would be asking if the Trial Chamber would permit that the
8 Witness MM give her direct testimony, and then we would then move to
9 Mr. Bowen, who could give all of his testimony, and then we could proceed
10 after that with the cross-examination of Witness MM. That would ensure
11 that Mr. Bowen would be able to finish his testimony today and return to
12 England. And I've asked my learned colleagues on the Defence bench, and I
13 believe that there's no objection from the Defence to proceeding along
14 those lines.
15 JUDGE LIU: We have to confirm that from Defence counsels.
16 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, good morning. That is
17 absolutely correct. We have no objection with that procedure at all.
18 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
19 Mr. Seric?
20 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, good morning. We do
21 agree. We have already given our consent to our colleague Mr. Stringer
22 with regard to this particular sequence of witnesses. We have also
23 received your decision with regard to going into closed session for
24 Witness MM. However, during cross-examination, I would like to say that I
25 will be touching upon all these issues that were mentioned in direct
1 examination, too, so please bear that in mind. Thank you.
2 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.
3 MR. MEEK: Very briefly, Mr. President and Your Honours, I have
4 also read this decision, and I see that pursuant to Rule 93, the Chamber
5 may and can hear testimony of a witness which is capable of establishing a
6 consistent pattern of conduct. I think that is the intent of Rule 93.
7 For the record, Your Honours do not know that this is the sole
8 witness out of 60-some live witnesses and deposition witnesses that will
9 testify about any sexual improprieties during an expulsion, and we believe
10 that the Prosecutor can confirm that. With that in mind, we believe this
11 to be an isolated incident and, therefore, not a consistent pattern.
12 So in that event, we want Your Honours to know that when the time
13 comes, if they choose to ask the witness questions about sexual
14 improprieties, we would still object for the record, for purposes of
15 preserving our objection, because we believe it to be only an isolated
16 incident and therefore not subject to Rule 93. Thank you very much.
17 JUDGE LIU: Well, before we have the next witness, I would like to
18 remind both parties, first of all, to Rule 96. We believe that if there
19 is no dispute about that rape incident between the two parties, we hope
20 both the direct examination and cross-examination should be as concise as
21 possible, because the sexual assault was not a charge in the indictment.
22 It's only one form of the pressure the witness and other people received.
23 I hope that both parties will bear this in mind.
24 Yes, Mr. Stringer. Are you ready for the next witness?
25 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. It's a closed-session witness,
1 so we'd ask that the blinds are drawn.
2 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
3 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, if I could take this opportunity.
4 Where I come from, and perhaps I could suggest, certainly the Prosecution
5 would have no objection if the Trial Chamber were to give both parties on
6 the Defence side a continuing objection on the record so that it's not
7 necessary for them to be on their feet during the direct examination.
8 It's something that's permissible, at least where I come from, under
9 certain circumstances. I haven't seen it here. But in any event, it may
10 also then enable the witness to give that part of her testimony even more
11 concisely without us all dwelling on it if, in fact, the Trial Chamber
12 simply grants the Defence a continuing objection at this time, without
13 requiring them to state their objections at the time the testimony comes
15 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Seric.
16 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] I do agree with my colleague
17 Mr. Stringer, Mr. President. In our system also, in our judicial system
18 in criminal proceedings, there is the so-called institute of permanent
19 objection -- continuing objection. So we won't have to rise every time
20 when sexual assault is referred to during the direct examination. So all
21 of us together, notably the witness, should be spared such details as much
22 as possible. Thank you.
23 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
24 Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
25 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, not to repeat myself:
1 In our judicial system, even when someone is accused of a war
2 crime - because that does exist in our legislation - a person cannot be
3 questioned about things that are not included in the indictment. Isolated
4 cases should not be treated at all, and my colleague Mr. Meek pointed out
5 that, and I'm glad to see that there are similarities between our
6 different systems.
7 My continuing objection will be that questions should not be put
8 with regard to isolated incidents, things that do not belong to the
9 indictment. Having said that, we do bear in mind that these are victims
10 and not only witnesses. We bear this in mind all the time. These are
11 people who have suffered. We always keep this in mind. However, we are
12 also only human, and we work very hard all day, and sometimes things
13 happen. We all are aware of comparative international law. If something
14 exceeds the indictment, there is no point in putting questions with regard
15 to that. What Mr. Stringer said yesterday and today, and that is Rule 96
16 as well, it is consistence, consistence, that shows a continued form of
18 We have not had a single female witness, nor will we have one, who
19 will state that she was abused in this way. Bearing in mind the practice
20 of all the systems we hail from, I believe that the Trial Chamber should
21 not allow this line of questioning at all. That is my continuing
22 objection, our continuing objection that we abide by. Thank you.
23 JUDGE LIU: We believe that your objection is correctly recorded
24 in the transcript. And I believe that the Prosecution will bear in mind
25 that the rape is not charged in the indictment. What we want to hear is
1 all the evidence relating to a alleged forced transfer and other forms of
2 terrors asserted to the victims and all that treatment that might have
3 been directed against certain population.
4 Yes, Mr. Stringer.
5 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. I can inform the Trial
6 Chamber, this witness's testimony is relevant to paragraph 7 of the
7 indictment regarding participation of forces of the army of Croatia. The
8 testimony is also relevant to superior authority under paragraphs 14 and
9 17. The testimony will be relevant to paragraph 26 of count 1, and also
10 paragraph 54 of count 18, which is the count charging the forcible
11 transfer or forced eviction.
12 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Which means that you are not
13 going into details of that rape incident.
14 MR. STRINGER: Your Honour, I'm going to simply ask her to tell us
15 what happened when the soldiers arrived in her flat, and just to -- with
16 the Trial Chamber's permission, really ask her to just tell us what
17 happened. And I agree, there is not a rape count in the indictment. And
18 for that reason, it's not necessary to establish the elements of a crime
19 that one would otherwise have to establish with particular specificity.
20 We don't have to do that in this case, and I don't intend to do so.
21 JUDGE LIU: Thank you
22 [Closed session]
13 Pages 5731 to 5763 redacted – closed session.
20 [Open session]
21 JUDGE LIU: Yes, we are now in the open session.
22 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honour.
23 Before we say anything about this proposal, I would like to know what this
24 witness has to do with my client and what does this film have to do with
25 this and what does this support in terms of the indictment, which charges,
which counts? Because is this supposed to show what happened in East
2 Mostar on some day, some month? I imagine we'll see all of this on this
3 film. I really have no idea what this has to do with my client.
4 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer, would you please brief us.
5 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. The film was provided to
6 counsel for both accused many months ago, maybe a year or so ago. We
7 invited them at least twice to inform us what was their position in
8 respect of the videotape, whether they would object, whether they would
9 agree, whether it was necessary to even call a witness to testify about
10 it. So counsel I believe is quite well-acquainted with the videotape.
11 I'm prepared to inform the Trial Chamber the specific parts of the
12 indictment which this is relevant to. I can say that this witness is not
13 going to testify directly about either of the accused. He doesn't know
14 either of the accused. But beyond that, it's our view that the videotape,
15 beyond giving evidence - and this witness's testimony will do so as well -
16 of parts of the indictment which are clearly a part of this case, I think
17 that there's nothing better that the Trial Chamber could see than this
18 videotape to see what was the situation in East Mostar during August and
19 September of 1993, which was the period of time in which it was filmed. I
20 think the Trial Chamber is extremely well-positioned to give the various
21 parts of the footage the credibility which they merit viewed in the
22 context of other evidence in this case.
23 But, Your Honour, it's extremely useful evidence, in our view, for
24 the Trial Chamber to see, to have the images of East Mostar and the images
25 of forced evictions taking place during the nighttime, which are shown on
1 this footage. It may be the only footage in this building of war crimes
2 while they are happening. And that's what we propose to show the Trial
3 Chamber in the 40 minutes that it will take.
4 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
5 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I just
6 wanted to put a very simple question: Could the gentlemen of the
7 Prosecution tell me, or rather, tell the Honourable Trial Chamber and us,
8 these pictures of Mostar, this film from Mostar, what count of the
9 indictment does that refer to? It is true that we received film.
10 Everything that my colleague said is true. And I see no need to emphasise
11 all of that, and there's no denying that.
12 What we are challenging is the following. And of course, I have
13 no influence over Prosecution witnesses, nor would any proposals of mine
14 in this respect be taken into account, and I am not going to go into
15 Prosecution tactics either. I am simply invoking what was said yesterday
16 in this courtroom and what is being said time and again. Obviously it is
17 Prosecution tactics to show as many pictures as possible, to show as many
18 different pictures as possible, those that have to do with the indictment,
19 those that have nothing to do with the indictment, and to create a certain
20 concept, precept even before that. And these things have nothing to do
21 with my client. Nothing else.
22 JUDGE LIU: Well, as I understand, this film is made about the
23 background of the situation at that time. And we also would like to ask
24 the Prosecutor to show us whether there's any specific counts in the
25 indictment which this film is related to.
1 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. The evidence of the witness
2 and the film, which we will offer into evidence, is relevant to
3 paragraphs 10 and 11 of the indictment, which relate to the campaign of
4 violence, and also the siege of East Mostar, the shelling and the sniping
5 campaign that was directed at the population that was in East Mostar as
6 alleged in paragraph 10. And also, the evidence will be relevant to
7 count 18, forced evictions, paragraph 54.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE CLARK: Mr. Krsnik and Mr. Seric, I can see what your
10 position is and I can see the Prosecution's position. Is it your position
11 that forcible transfer and inhumane treatment to the population of -- the
12 Muslim population of Mostar is denied? You see, if your position is that
13 these terrible things did happen but that your client didn't commit them,
14 that's one thing. But my understanding of the way you've been running
15 this case is not only did your client not commit any of the crimes that
16 were charged against him but these events didn't happen in the way they're
17 described. So perhaps you'd want to check with Mr. Seric about what your
18 position is.
19 Do you deny that the contents of Mr. Bowen's film are true and
20 accurate? And then it becomes an issue. Or do you say there is no
21 dispute but that these things happened? In which case we don't need,
22 probably don't need - I'll have to consult with my colleagues - we
23 wouldn't need to see. You see, if you agree that certain events took
24 place, then there's no dispute. The dispute that we have to determine is
25 whether your client or Mr. Seric's client had anything to do with what
1 happened. Do you see the distinction?
2 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Absolutely, Your Honour, and thank
3 you for your help. That is precisely what I had wished to clarify.
4 JUDGE CLARK: Perhaps a few minutes with your colleagues and then
5 you can come back and let us know.
6 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
7 [Defence counsel confer]
8 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Yes, Mr. Seric. I have to apologise.
9 Mr. Krsnik.
10 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour, for giving me
11 the floor. There may have been some misunderstandings amongst ourselves,
12 actually, between my colleague Mr. Seric and me and my partner. There was
13 a point that I wanted to clarify, and my colleague Mr. Meek drew my
14 attention to a problem in the record, in the transcript, that is. I
15 merely wanted to point out that the film that we are about to watch -
16 because, of course, I have already viewed the film - that that film has
17 nothing to do with our clients.
18 As to your question, Your Honour, Judge Clark, I will give you a
19 very brief response. My colleague has his own position. We are starting
20 from the presumption of innocence, of course, and what we deny is the
21 participation of my client in any of these events that we have so far
22 heard about, and that he did not -- our position is that he did not have
23 any knowledge about such events. Because there are things that we hear
24 for the first time from the witnesses here in the courtroom.
25 So that would be briefly my position, Your Honour. Once you see
1 the film, I think my position will become more clear. It concerns a very
2 small portion of the town, that is, the East Mostar, and it was done only
3 from that perspective. We will see images of some people about whom we
4 don't know much -- actually, which don't know anything at all. We don't
5 know who there are, by whom they had been expelled, and from where. And
6 my colleague Mr. Meek has justly pointed out the fact that the images
7 we're going to see have nothing to do with my client.
8 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Seric.
9 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, Your Honours, I have
10 now been involved in this without any reason. I did not make any
11 representations as to this video footage. I am not opposed to the viewing
12 of this film. As for the position of this Defence team, ever since the
13 first day, I think our position was clear, and it can be encapsulated in
14 the not guilty plea of my client.
15 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Of course, that your clients
16 will be presumed innocent before the convictions made by this Trial
17 Chamber. We fully agree with you. As for your interventions, both of the
18 Defence counsel said that you do not oppose to seeing this film by us.
19 So anyhow, before we see that film, we couldn't know what this
20 film is about, so we are going to hear the next witness, and we are going
21 to watch that film. So decided.
22 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. We call Jeremy Bowen.
23 JUDGE LIU: May the usher bring that witness in.
24 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I'm not sure what are your
25 intentions now in terms of the lunch break, because we started a little
early. If we go until 1.00, the normal time, I believe we could actually
2 get through the introductory comments, as well as the videotape itself,
3 before the lunch break without having to interrupt the videotape.
4 [The witness entered court]
5 JUDGE LIU: Well, we'll finish that section before 1.00.
6 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 WITNESS: JEREMY BOWEN
8 JUDGE LIU: Good morning, Witness.
9 THE WITNESS: Good morning.
10 JUDGE LIU: Would you please make the solemn declaration in
11 accordance with the paper the usher is showing to you.
12 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
13 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 JUDGE LIU: You may sit down, please.
15 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
16 Examined by Mr. Stringer:
17 Q. Good morning, sir.
18 A. Morning.
19 Q. Could you tell us, please, your name and spell your last name for
20 the record.
21 A. It's Jeremy Bowen, and spell it B-o-w-e-n.
22 Q. Where are you employed, Mr. Bowen?
23 A. I work for BBC.
24 Can I turn down the volume on my earphones a little bit? It's
25 very loud. Okay.
1 I work for the BBC. I'm a journalist.
2 Q. Currently, your current duties as a journalist, what does that
4 A. At the moment, I'm a news anchor for the BBC. I present the main
5 BBC morning news show on the main network, BBC1.
6 Q. Mr. Bowen, before you continue, I would ask you to keep in mind -
7 both of us need to keep in mind - that as we speak, interpreters behind us
8 are translating and interpreting our words into other languages, so that
9 we're going to need to speak slowly and to try to pause between question
10 and answer.
11 A. I understand.
12 Q. Mr. Bowen, could you please just give us a background about your
13 experience as a journalist with the BBC.
14 A. I joined the BBC in 1984 after I finished at university. I was a
15 trainee on their graduate training programme, which I did for a couple of
16 years. In 1987, I had my first foreign posting for the --
17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.
18 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, we would stipulate to this
19 background -- so we can go right into the film, we would stipulate to this
20 background that he's a newsman and has credentials to make such a
22 JUDGE LIU: Do you agree with that, Mr. Stringer?
23 MR. STRINGER: No, Mr. President. Take 30 seconds. I think the
24 witness just ought to be able to tell us about his background. I'm going
25 to bring this down to the conflict in the former Yugoslavia, which I think
1 is particularly pertinent to his testimony.
2 JUDGE LIU: We'll hear what happened in the former Yugoslavia at
3 that time, but you will make it as concise as possible.
4 MR. STRINGER: Very well, Mr. President.
5 Q. Mr. Bowen, let me ask you just a couple of particular questions.
6 You said that you joined the BBC in 1984 in the training programme. Let
7 me ask you, in the years since then, have you covered armed conflicts in
8 various parts of the world?
9 A. Yes. I describe myself as a very experienced war correspondent
10 coverer of armed conflict. I started doing it in 1989 in El Salvador. I
11 covered Afghanistan the same year. I covered the Romanian revolution. I
12 was in Baghdad during the Gulf War when it was being attacked by the
13 allied side. I started covering the wars of former Yugoslavia in 1991
14 with the Croatian war in Eastern Slavonia, Vukovar. I was in Vukovar
15 quite a bit while it was being shelled. I covered that war extensively
16 during the summer and early autumn of 1991.
17 I started covering the war in Bosnia in July of 1992 in Sarajevo.
18 I spent a lot of that summer in Sarajevo. In the later part of that year,
19 September -- from September, I covered the situation in Central Bosnia,
20 the Lasva Valley, Kiseljak, Travnik, Busovaca, Vitez, places like that. I
21 was in Sarajevo again over the winter and right through 1993 until August
22 of that year, when I heard about the situation in Mostar.
23 Q. And then subsequently, were you involved in making a documentary
24 about the city of Mostar?
25 A. Yes, I was.
1 Q. Could you just tell us -- we're going to play it in a few
2 minutes. Could you tell us how this came about.
3 A. Yes. In August of 1993, I was in Sarajevo covering the situation
4 there. I was at a briefing giving by the UNHCR, by their spokesman Peter
5 Keslar, and he said that there was a very difficult situation in the
6 eastern part of Mostar where upwards of 20.000 Muslims were besieged. He
7 said that there was a path into the east side of Mostar which the Bosnian
8 army were using to get weapons in and supplies. So I thought this was
9 going to be a very important story, and I found out how to do it. I had
10 to get quite extensive permissions to get down there. And I went in on
11 foot with the Bosnian army from Jablanica, walked across the mountains,
12 and I was in there for August of that year for a week or ten days.
13 When I got back to London, I produced -- a colleague of mine at
14 the BBC said that he wanted to make a documentary about Bosnia, and what
15 should he do it about. I said, "Look, I've just been in Mostar. There's
16 an incredible situation going on there. We should go there and make a
17 documentary." So we worked towards doing that, and we went in to film in
18 September of 1993.
19 Q. And how long did you stay in Mostar in September approximately?
20 A. Approximately three weeks.
21 Q. And then subsequently, then, in the months that followed, the
22 documentary was produced, or made?
23 A. Yes, it was. It was aired, I think, in November of '93 on the
24 BBC. It was also aired on ABC "Nightline" in the States and I think in
25 various other countries where the BBC syndicated it around the world.
1 Q. Can you tell us, then, the footage, the images which appear in the
2 videotape, the documentary, when were those filmed?
3 A. The images were filmed mainly in September of 1993 and in the
4 early part of October as well, actually. We were still there in early
5 October. Some of it was -- a couple of sequences were filmed in August,
6 in our trip in August. But the vast majority of it was filmed during our
7 three weeks or so in the city in September and October 1993.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, at this time I would propose to play
10 the videotape, which should be in the technical booth marked as
11 Exhibit 586.
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
13 MR. STRINGER: It might be useful to turn down the lights as
15 [Videotape played]
16 JEREMY BOWEN: Croatian propaganda echoing over the front line in
17 Mostar, the most vicious theater of war in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Since May,
18 Bosnian Croats, aided and abetted by the Croatian government, have been
19 laying siege to about 60.000 people in East Mostar. Almost all of them
20 are Muslims and they are fighting back hard. There are no safe places in
21 East Mostar. You can be killed or maimed at any time on any street
22 corner. Until you see it happening, it's hard to realise how quickly
23 lives can be destroyed.
24 Franjo Pavlovic [phoen], who was born a Croat, made the mistake
25 of going out to repair some shell damage on what had started out as a
1 quiet morning. Because Raima, his wife, is a Muslim, the Croats expelled
2 them over the front line into East Mostar in August. He had one chance.
3 A fire engine, the only one left on this side of Mostar, was nearby.
4 Perhaps it could get him to the hospital in time. Nothing in her life
5 before the war had prepared Mrs. Pavlovic for this. She is 53. After
6 they married, she worked as an accountant in a graphic design business.
7 The last traces of that life disappeared when her husband was hit.
8 The streets were empty, and not just because of the shelling.
9 There is a six-hour-long daytime curfew. The idea is to stop people
10 getting hurt. The hospital was only a few minutes away. Nothing is more
11 than a few minutes away in East Mostar. The doctor hardly had to look at
12 him. Mr. Pavlovic was dead. He had been killed by shrapnel in the chest.
13 For her sake, he went through the motions.
14 RAIMA PAVLOVIC: [Foreign language]
15 JEREMY BOWEN: "You haven't examined him yet," she said. "Please
16 do more." Everything, from the explosion to this, had taken about ten
17 minutes. The hospital was ready for the next casualties.
18 RAIMA PAVLOVIC: [Voiceover] This morning we were trying to repair
19 our wall. It was destroyed by a mortar. He stepped out to find out what
20 the time was and to get some water so that I could wash our clothes.
21 That's when it happened.
22 JEREMY BOWEN: The more the doctors see, the more it hurts. They
23 said they try not to let it show. They had been married for 32 years.
24 The River Neretva cuts Mostar in two. These wrecked buildings
25 are on the east bank, the stronghold of the Muslim-led Bosnian government
1 forces. But they have an important foothold on the otherwise
2 Croat-controlled west bank as well. To get there, you have to cross the
3 old bridge, which was built in the 1500s. It's been hit many times, but
4 it's still standing, just about. The Croats on the hill know that if the
5 bridge falls, they will have savaged morale on the other side. It would
6 be a strategic victory as well, because it's the route to the front line.
7 A local cameraman, called Miralem Smailhodzic [phoen], documented
8 the Croat's attempts to destroy it. He took these pictures. He is dead
9 now, killed by a mortar a month or so ago.
10 They were bringing bodies back from the front the day that we
11 first crossed. The stretcher bearers worked for a well-organized civil
12 defense network. Men who aren't in the army have to take part. East
13 Mostar, because it's so isolated, has become the Bosnian government's
14 best-run and most highly mobilised enclave. It has to be, because they
15 have so little. They had to hope that the blankets would hide them from
16 the snipers. You can't move very fast when you are carrying a stretcher.
17 Normally they don't bother to bring the dead this far, but this man was
18 alive when they started the journey and they wanted to try to get him to
19 the hospital. There didn't seem much point in turning back when he died.
20 The soldiers told us that the best way across is to run. This is the
21 least dangerous way over the River Neretva. A stroll across here used to
22 be recommended in all the tourist guides. One other bridge still stands,
23 but it's even closer to the Croat positions.
24 MALE: Croatian front line fifty meters from us.
25 JEREMY BOWEN: The soldiers' morale is surprisingly high even
1 though they're out-gunned by the Croats. They use pieces of broken mirror
2 to look at their enemies in the way that soldiers of another generation
3 used periscopes in the trenches. War has its routine: standing guard,
4 hanging around, often under fire. That was a rocket-propelled grenade
5 hitting the floor above. Another exploded in the building opposite. As
6 usual, the Bosnian army here is short of weapons, so they make their own.
7 They call this one "little thunder." The explosive, they said, came from
8 unexploded Croat bombs.
9 JEREMY BOWEN: What is it like now in Mostar to be a soldier?
10 SOLDIER: We are all soldiers now here, and it's an ordinary life.
11 JEREMY BOWEN: It sounds like a tough life.
12 SOLDIER: Yes, it's a very tough life. It's a very tough life.
13 JEREMY BOWEN: So far, except for the Tanoys relaying Croat
14 propaganda, not all that different from any other urban front line in
15 Bosnia-Herzegovina, even down to the bodies rotting in no man's land. But
16 it is different, because the Bosnian government soldiers here are
17 learning. They are certain they have gained the edge over their Croat
18 enemies on the other side of the line.
19 Everything they have suffered since the war started has made one
20 essential fact very clear: If they are going to survive, it's down to
21 them. Nobody is going to come to the rescue. The people here are
22 surrounded by enemies, and long ago they stopped dreaming about
23 international military intervention. But they think they can win this war
24 because they have nowhere else to go, because their suffering has made
25 them strong, and because they believe they have a simple choice: to fight
1 or to die.
2 The first rule of movement in Mostar is to keep out sight of the
3 Croat gunners on Hum, the hill which dominates the city. The second is
4 don't slow down, or the Croats on Hum will pick you off, if their
5 colleagues beyond the sandbags and down the street don't get you first.
6 The Bosnian soldiers here know all about that, and much more.
7 If they didn't, they wouldn't have survived this long. This unit's
8 commander is Nermin Brkan, a 31-year-old who was a veterinary surgeon
9 before the war. He used to specialise in animal reproduction. Now, like
10 his colleagues, he's learned how to kill. This homemade bomb, they
11 complain, was too heavy to throw. They prefer the smaller ones.
12 NERMIN BRKAN: I don't like it, shooting anybody, but I must. I
13 must, we think, because enemies on other side. I live here, live here my
14 father, my mother, my grandfather, my grandmother, dead here. I am living
15 here. I am fighting for this my house, for my parents, for my colleagues,
16 for my people, for my country.
17 JEREMY BOWEN: Would you accept a peace settlement that said
18 Mostar will be a divided city like Berlin?
19 NERMIN BRKAN: Like Berlin?
20 JEREMY BOWEN: Berlin, yeah, before the wall came down. Would you
21 like Mostar to be like that?
22 NERMIN BRKAN: No. No. No.
23 JEREMY BOWEN: And if you lose, where do you go?
24 NERMIN BRKAN: I don't know. I don't know.
25 JEREMY BOWEN: Refugees started appearing in no man's land.
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts – Pages 5779 to 5789.
1 NERMIN BRKAN: Oh, another man, old man and old woman.
2 JEREMY BOWEN: He told them to hurry and to take cover. Often the
3 Croats start shooting once they've forced Muslims out of West Mostar
4 through this section of the front line. Fatima and Salim Matic [phoen]
5 had just been thrown out of their home by Croat gunmen. Mr. Matic, who is
6 72, managed to put on three shirts and to grab two umbrellas as he left.
7 His wife, who is 70, was still in her nightclothes. Their neighbor,
8 84-year-old Mrs. Almasa Humo, arrived a few minutes later. "Don't sit
9 there," they told her. "They could kill you." Even if Mrs. Humo still
10 cared, she didn't have the strength to move any further on her own.
11 The soldiers see the old and the weak arriving like this every
12 day. They have heard so many accounts of brutality, inhumanity and
13 dispossession that they can hardly bear to listen anymore.
14 MRS. HUMO: [Foreign language]
15 JEREMY BOWEN: She said the Croats had slapped her so hard that
16 her cheeks still hurt. The soldiers say they're Bosnians first, Muslims
17 second, but all the suffering is sharpening their Muslim identity.
18 MRS. MATIC: [Foreign language]
19 JEREMY BOWEN: "The Croats hate us because of our religion," she
20 said. But for the soldiers it's not a religious matter; it's a question
21 of power, of protecting their own people, people like the women and
22 children expelled from West Mostar. This family were lucky. The Croats
23 were only trying to scare them.
24 NERMIN BRKAN: This here war, it's only war.
25 JEREMY BOWEN: Just guns?
1 NERMIN BRKAN: Just guns.
2 JEREMY BOWEN: No human rights?
3 NERMIN BRKAN: No. No. You see? Human rights? Human rights?
4 Body, killing people, fight woman and children. It's your human rights?
5 Two hundred thousand people, Muslim, die. When, when, when stop? When
6 justice? Where, where is justice? Where? Who die, die. Who live, live.
7 JEREMY BOWEN: The lesson the soldiers have drawn from the ethnic
8 cleansing is that if you want to live, you have to fight. The refugees
9 were led off into the heart of the enclave, where no civilian would
10 disagree with the soldiers' conclusions. East Mostar has organised itself
11 for a long war. In charge of that are Mostar's military leaders. In the
12 chair, Esad Humo, an architect before the war. Like all East Mostar's
13 commanders, he's found that he has a talent for fighting, leadership, and
14 survival. Nobody in the room said they wanted a Muslim state, but nobody
15 denied they were fighting for Muslim rights.
16 COLONEL ESAD HUMO, MOSTAR BRIGADE: Two years ago I was normal, if
17 I can say normal. Normal citizen working, you know, learning. I had a
18 job, wife, kids, brother, home. Now everything is changed.
19 JEREMY BOWEN: Tell me, what are you guys here fighting for?
20 ESAD HOMO: For what we are fighting? At first, for a place for
21 living. For surviving, that's what we are fighting for. That's first
22 thing, and after that comes something else.
23 JEREMY BOWEN: What comes after that? A Muslim state?
24 ESAD HUMO: Hmm, Muslim state. I am not sure, because I am not
25 fighting for a Muslim state. I am fighting for a state, I can say the
1 same as England or same as the French, I mean state for the people who can
2 live together without any difference.
3 JEREMY BOWEN: Do the experiences you've had over two years affect
4 the way that you fight?
5 ESAD HUMO: We learn how to kill, yes. Not only, not only the
6 soldiers; people learn how to survive. Because here is law of jungle. If
7 you don't want to be killed, you should kill. That's normal jungle law.
8 It's -- everybody knows about that.
9 JEREMY BOWEN: Jungle law, in conditions unfit for animals. "All
10 we have left," these women say, "is sadness and pain." One gave us a
11 letter to take out to a world they think has abandoned them. The
12 civilians know that their only hope is to help themselves, to hang on
13 until the killing ends, to survive the winter. But how do you avoid
14 pneumonia, bronchitis, and worse, when shells have smashed your roof?
15 These people are refugees. They live in a ruin, like thousands of
16 others in East Mostar. She can't walk. She lies in stinking clothes on a
17 soaking bed.
18 MALE: [Voiceover] What can I do? Either I die or go on living
19 like this.
20 JEREMY BOWEN: Do you think your army will come to rescue you to,
21 to win this war for you?
22 HEMALINA TANOVIC: Yes.
23 JEREMY BOWEN: Why is that necessary? Isn't it better to talk?
24 HEMALINA TANOVIC: I think it's necessary because there's no use,
25 not any use of talking with them, because they -- they don't want to live
1 with us.
2 JEREMY BOWEN: But it will take the Bosnian army to free you. It
3 won't be the outside world or negotiations; it's your soldiers who will do
5 HEMALINA TANOVIC: Yes, because I want to tell you: We, we really
6 don't trust anyone, because everybody talking about us, talking about hard
7 situation, difficulty of life, but no one does anything.
8 JEREMY BOWEN: Most people only go out when they have to, once a
9 day to the soup kitchen. Each container full has to last a family 24
10 hours. There isn't much, but they all get about the same. The black
11 market which has corrupted Sarajevo doesn't exist in East Mostar. Because
12 hardly any aid gets into the city, there is nothing to buy or sell. It's
13 all rationed. The civilians do as they're told. They have no choice.
14 Organisation begins at the front line. They've set up forward first aid
16 Nusreta Becic [phoen], who used to be a geologist, is in charge of
17 this one. She runs it from her own home. She was treating one of her
18 neighbors when there was another explosion. It was very close, even
19 closer than they thought. Two men had been walking down the street. A
20 lot of people live in this area. It's only a few hundred yards from the
21 Croat positions. She slapped the man who was most seriously wounded to
22 try to stop him going into shock. Passersby ran to help. Somebody
23 shouted for some water. The man on the right died. They managed to save
24 the other man.
25 Not long afterwards, another emergency. A woman was lying on the
1 river bank. She had been doing her family's washing. She was already
2 dead, shot by a Croat sniper. If they survive long enough, the wounded
3 are brought here to the hospital. It's another favorite Croat target.
4 The stretchers are taken into the cellar of the building which used to be
5 a public health laboratory. The hospital director is Dr. Dragan Milavic.
6 He set it up from nothing just before the war with the Bosnian Croat army,
7 the HVO, started. Mostar's modern infirmary, where he used to work, is on
8 the Croat side. This is a charnel house, but it's all they have. The
9 corridor smells of blood. It isn't remotely sterile. There isn't enough
10 space for the wounded. East Mostar is a small place. Often they treat
11 people they know. Sometimes they treat people they love.
12 SELMA SLJIPEVICIC [phoen]: I ran out in the hall and I saw -- I
13 saw my father lying on the floor, on stretchers. I looked at his face.
14 One eye was open, one eye was closed, and he didn't have this side of his
15 face, and I could see his teeth. And in that moment, I thought: It's
16 okay. It's only face. They can fix it. He'll have a scar. So what? He
17 doesn't have to be beautiful. And I looked down, and I uncovered him, and
18 I saw huge hole here. He wasn't bleeding. It was just a red hole. And I
19 tried to, to, to touch the shrapnel. You're used to do it when you work
20 in a hospital. Then you touch, you -- to establish where the shrapnel
21 is. Is it deep inside or is -- I, I start doing it and my hands were full
22 of my father's blood.
23 DRAGAN MILAVIC: [Voiceover] We face huge problems, but we realise
24 we have to solve them ourselves. We have to sort things out by ourselves.
25 Whenever I talk to the Red Cross or Medecins Sans Frontiere, or any other
1 international organisation, they tell me, "We would help you, but our
2 actions are limited by the Croat HVO forces besieging the city." They
3 always mention the HVO. They use them as an excuse for their own
5 JEREMY BOWEN: The result is that Emir Demic is watching his
6 12-year-old brother Armele die. He is with him all the time. Armele has
7 been in a coma since he was hit in the head by shrapnel. Sometimes he
8 looks a little better, almost as if he could be coming round. Like
9 promises of medical evacuation, it's a cruel deception.
10 EMIR DEMIC: [Voiceover] He's got no real chance here, and the
11 doctors are saying that every moment is precious.
12 JEREMY BOWEN: Has anybody said that he might get evacuated?
13 EMIR DEMIC: [Voiceover] Some promises have been made, but they are
14 empty promises.
15 DR. DRAGAN MILAVIC: [Voiceover] A large number of patients have
16 died because we don't have the facilities to treat them properly. Under
17 these conditions, I don't think the kid stands a chance.
18 JEREMY BOWEN: It never stops. Eleven-year-old Medina has just
19 been wounded in the head. A shell hit her family's flat. The hospital
20 didn't have a bed for her, so they left her on a stretcher. Her father
21 wasn't much bothered by his own shrapnel injuries, which were serious
22 enough. All he could think about was his daughter. They were preparing
23 her for an operation. Seven months ago, the theater was an empty
24 storeroom. They have a brain surgeon at the hospital who didn't want to
25 be filmed because his wife and child are on the other side. But the only
1 diagnostic aid he has is an old x-ray machine, so he can't do much.
2 Dr. Milavic, the hospital director, is also the anaesthetist. He sedated
3 Medina and they started work. International donors have promised him a
4 modern field hospital, much better than the primitive conditions here that
5 they all loathe. But the hospital is stuck in Croatia. Nobody seems
6 capable of getting it to East Mostar. They didn't try to take the
7 shrapnel out of Medina's brain. It was too risky. Her only chance was
8 evacuation to a proper hospital a long way from the war.
9 There was an explosion. A shell had landed just outside the
10 hospital. A doctor who'd gone to the top of the stairs leading down to
11 the cellar had been wounded. It's dangerous to stand there, but they do,
12 to get away from the fetid atmosphere downstairs.
13 "Give me some space," Dr. Milavic said. He'd rushed out of the
14 operating theater to examine his colleague. The wife of a hospital worker
15 who was slightly wounded was helped down. The injured doctor was scared.
16 Bad leg wounds often end in amputations in this hospital. Dr. Milavic
17 tried to reassure him. He had been lucky, by the standards of this place.
18 The doctors are at breaking point. It's not unusual for one man to
19 perform ten major operations in a day.
20 A few yards away, the operation on Medina was still going on.
21 They had time to do the best they could for her. No other casualties had
22 come in.
23 It gets no better at night. Five hundred Muslims had just been
24 robbed and thrown out of their homes in West Mostar by the Croats. They
25 had to cross the River Neretva to get to comparative safety on a bridge
1 made of rope and planks. Bosnian soldiers told them which way to go. The
2 Croats were shooting at the people they'd just made refugees. Only a few
3 hours before, until the Croat gangs had come for them and forced them over
4 the front line, they'd thought they were safe. They had been settling
5 down for the night. The Croat machine-guns didn't let up, and the
6 refugees kept on coming. They were trying to kill old men and women,
7 mothers and their children.
8 She was so frightened she could barely walk, but she tried to calm
9 her sons. Each new family has to be fed and housed. This is a war crime
10 with a cold purpose: to increase the pressure on the military authorities
11 in East Mostar. The brutality of the expulsions drives home the message
12 that compromise with Croat extremists is neither possible nor desirable.
13 The refugees spent their first night in East Mostar in a bombed-out
14 theater. In one evening, all of them had lost their homes and
15 possessions. They talked of persecution, rape and murder.
16 FEMALE: [Voiceover] We were driven to a small wood. My sons were
17 pulled out of the car. They were taken into that wood. I was told that
18 their throats were slit. I only live because I have to, only because I
19 have to. What sort of life is this?
20 ANOTHER FEMALE: [Voiceover] What do I know about politics? I have
21 never thought about it. Tonight the Croat soldiers told me to shut up, to
22 be quiet. That's what I did. I have never done anything to anyone.
23 JEREMY BOWEN: The next morning a corpse was lying where the
24 refugees had crossed. It was a woman in a pink sweater. A shopping bag
25 was on either side of her. The UN is examining documents that one of the
1 refugees smuggled out in his shoes. He didn't want us to show his face.
2 He said they were lists of the names of dead Muslims he was forced to
3 bury. Some were civilians, some were soldiers. In all, there were 274
4 names. A woman said that ten men raped her and robbed her before she was
6 FEMALE: [Voiceover] My mother whispered to me, "They'll kill us."
7 I just said to her, "Don't be afraid," very quietly, so they couldn't hear
8 me. I thought that they were going to shoot us, that they'd rape me and
9 kill me afterwards. Luckily, they didn't kill me -- well, lucky as far as
10 being killed is concerned. But the rape ... Sometimes my brain simply
11 stops working. I can't get my thoughts together. I am fighting on my
12 own. It's difficult.
13 JEREMY BOWEN: Buildings can be restored, but every rape and every
14 killing, and the destruction of their city, is changing these people.
15 Goran Stosic was our guide on a particularly nasty section of the front
16 line. He was crouching because the Croats were shooting from their
17 positions on the other side of the wall. To survive and to win, they are
18 doing things of which not so long ago they wouldn't have dreamt.
19 Goran has become an accomplished fighter. Before the war he was
20 trying to qualify as a lawyer. He talked about a country where Muslims,
21 Serbs, and Croats could live together again. After all, he pointed out,
22 there are still Serbs and Croats in the Bosnian army.
23 We moved slowly along the river bank, out of sight of the snipers,
24 but they could see us on the way up to the trenches. It makes no
25 difference that some Serbs and Croats are in the Bosnian army. Most of
1 the rest aren't. Any chance of reconciliation was lost in trenches like
2 this long ago. There will be no going back to what they had here once for
3 at least a generation.
4 Hodza, Goran's commander, used a mirror to point out the
5 whereabouts of a Croat sniper. He was in the tower. Hodza didn't try to
6 hide the way the Bosnian army treats its prisoners either. A Croatian
7 prisoner of war appeared in the trench we just crossed. Prisoners dig the
8 trenches and lay sandbags in the most exposed and dangerous positions on
9 the front line. When they are not working, they are imprisoned in a
10 sweaty, badly ventilated cellar. We could film, but we weren't allowed to
11 talk to any of them. One prisoner was badly wounded. He was in
12 considerable pain. A lot of the prisoners had been hurt. The injuries
13 were caused, their guard said with some relish, by Croat fire on the front
14 line. The prisoners were thin, but they looked no worse fed than many
15 civilians in East Mostar. The guard said they eat the same food.
16 Their captors know that the work they do on the front line - here
17 they were exhuming bodies - contravenes the Geneva Convention. As far as
18 they're concerned, though, that's better than seeing their own people
19 doing it. In this war there is no middle way. There are victors and
20 there are victims. The Bosnian soldiers know which they want to be. They
21 dug up these bodies to use them as currency in a prisoner exchange.
22 Mostar is the most devastated city in the former Yugoslavia, worse
23 than Sarajevo or Vukovar. It's a vicious fight, and it has a long way to
25 Hodza commands the Bosnian Army in Santici, the old commercial
1 district. Its backyards, basements and alleyways are where the heaviest
2 fighting in Mostar happens. In Santici, the Bosnian Army is putting its
3 new hardness to the test. The soldiers have found that in these urban
4 battlefields, you end up dead if you hold back, if you hesitate to kill.
5 That means no pity and no mercy. Hodza told us that Croats make Bosnian
6 army prisoners work on the front line too. Sometimes they make them build
7 positions only a few feet away. Hodza said they have seen prisoners who
8 are friends, cousins, even brothers. The sandbags mark the Croat HVO
9 lines. But the orders are clear: Attack, even if Bosnian prisoners are
10 in the way.
11 EFTAN TIKVESA: [Voiceover] The enemy were very close. We pushed
12 forward our positions. Only a wall about twenty or thirty centimeters
13 thick separated me from two HVO soldiers. They were using our prisoners,
14 making them work at gunpoint. I had to throw two hand grenades in among
16 JEREMY BOWEN: Away from the fiercest fighting, the Bosnian army
17 also controls the outlying villages to the north and the south. General
18 Arif Pasalic, the regional commander, took us to see them. He is a
19 professional soldier. He was an officer in the JNA, the old Yugoslav
20 army. Shells came in from the Croat side occasionally, but it was a quiet
21 day. The Bosnian positions were secure. Even Mostar itself, five miles
22 away, was fairly calm. The general, though, was not a happy man. He
23 should have been. In thirty hours of intense combat, his men had battled
24 their way through a Croat-controlled suburb and up the mountain called
25 Hum, which dominates Mostar. It was probably their single most
1 significant victory of the war.
2 ARIF PASALIC: [Voiceover] That mountain is the key, whether you
3 are attacking or defending. Whoever wants to conquer Mostar must take
4 control of the mountain, and whoever defends Mostar must keep control of
5 the mountain, because it dominates the city and the whole of the valley.
6 JEREMY BOWEN: But the order came from Sarajevo saying they had to
7 retreat. The government wanted to send a positive signal to the peace
8 talks. The general complied reluctantly, but he refused to go to Sarajevo
9 for consultations about the talks, a process in which he had no faith or
10 interest. Sarajevo controls the pack horses which resupply East Mostar
11 with ammunition, so it still calls the tune. But just in case, though,
12 the independent-minded Mostar commanders are buying weapons from the Serbs
13 as well.
14 The route across the high mountains will be much harder during the
15 winter. Our convoy waited until it was dark before attempting the most
16 difficult part of the journey, first on foot, through an opening in the
17 Croatian front line. On the outskirts of Mostar they transfer the
18 ammunition into vehicles, then move at speed down a contested road. The
19 Bosnian army controls the tarmac, but the Croats have mounted searchlights
20 alongside it. Their positions are a few hundred yards from the road.
21 There is always the hope that if you drive fast enough, the searchlight
22 operators won't be able to pick you up. We were unlucky. It was a tense
23 few moments. Each vehicle only carries a small amount of ammunition in
24 case it is hit and they lose the consignment.
25 There is another route into Mostar, the main road. UN convoys use
1 it when the Croats let them. Food lorries are so rare here that their
2 arrival always cause a stir. This time they delivered a load of flour.
3 The soldiers and then the hospital take most of what is brought in.
4 Ordinary civilians come a very poor third. There isn't enough. They all
5 face a hungry as well as a dangerous winter. The convoy brought a UN
6 medical team to the hospital as well. They came to work out which cases
7 were serious enough to be evacuated abroad. Dr. Milavic took them to the
8 two children with head wounds.
9 MALE: Here, is this the one?
10 JEREMY BOWEN: Emir Demic was still at his brother's bedside. He
11 had been waiting desperately for this. He had spent most of the last two
12 weeks with Armele, who was still in a deep coma. A few feet away lay
14 FEMALE: [Voiceover] I'd like to take my child out of this madness.
15 This is hell. If only she'd wake up.
16 JEREMY BOWEN: But Medina's condition was deteriorating. She died
17 a little later. The funeral was held after dark because of snipers.
18 Medina wasn't evacuated in time because both sides use medical evacuation
19 as a weapon of war. They weren't prepared to make a deal for her, for
20 Armele, who was still alive when we left, or for anybody else. The fight
21 is all that matters now in Mostar. They have grasped the cruel essence of
22 this war: that compromise counts for nothing, that only the strong will
24 JEREMY BOWEN: What if your military efforts are undercut by
25 President Izetbegovic signing a piece of paper that says: "We have a
1 cease fire just where we are now and we stop fighting"? Would you accept
3 ESAD HUMO: He will not do it. You understand what I mean? He
4 will not do it, so no talking about that. No way. It's not -- there is
5 not any possibility that he or anybody else can say: It's finished. Your
6 town is divided or you will leave the town.
7 JEREMY BOWEN: A lot of your men have been killed here. Your own
8 brother was killed fighting. How much longer can you go on taking these
9 losses? How much longer can you see your men being killed? Because they
10 are not going to all last forever, are they?
11 ESAD HUMO: You know, I think that it's -- sorry, but for me it's
12 the wrong question, and I know only the right answer on that wrong
13 question. The right answer is: We will win. That's the answer. It's
14 not the question how long. I don't know how long. Next ten years, next
15 twenty years. I don't know. I understand what you ask, but you should
16 try to understand me, that we will fight to the end.
17 SOLDIERS: [Singing]
18 JEREMY BOWEN: These young men - Serbs, Croats, and Muslims, all
19 soldiers in the Bosnian army - are singing about the death of Mostar, the
20 city where friendships like theirs were possible. They hope their
21 children will be friends. That's if they live long enough to become
23 [End of videotape]
24 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
25 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, we could break for lunch at this
1 time. I have a few questions about the videotape, but that could take
2 place after, if you prefer.
3 JUDGE LIU: We'll resume at 2.30 this afternoon.
4 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.32 p.m.
2 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer.
3 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
4 Q. Mr. Bowen, a few moments ago I was reminded and asked if we could
5 maybe speak a little more slowly and pause just a little longer --
6 A. Sure.
7 Q. -- in between question and answer.
8 Now that we've seen the documentary which you made, I wanted to
9 ask you just a few questions about it. At the beginning, you state that
10 Mostar at that time, I think you said, was the most vicious theatre of
11 fighting in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I wanted to ask you to what extent --
12 or how did the conflict in Mostar differ from conflicts that you saw in
13 other parts of Bosnia-Herzegovina or other parts of the former
15 A. I think it differed in terms of what was going on at the time
17 How do I turn the volume down again? Sorry. How is that? It's
18 coming out really loud in my ears. Oh, okay. Yes, I think that's --
19 The way it differed, I think, was the intensity of what was
20 happening. It was in a fairly limited geographical area, which probably
21 magnified that. And also, I felt it was qualitatively different to what
22 was going on, for example, at that time in Sarajevo, because it felt more
23 cut off. There wasn't a black market. There weren't people in there
24 getting rich, as there were in Sarajevo. In fact, what there was, was a
25 highly mobilised population in the enclave on the east side which was
1 absolutely dedicated to fighting the war, and you sometimes had the
2 impression in other parts of the war in Yugoslavia, in the former
3 Yugoslavia, that it was something that wasn't so intense at times. I
4 mean, it was still very intense - don't get me wrong - but there was a
5 higher degree of it, is what I'm trying to say, in Mostar at that
6 particular time.
7 I had also been in Vukovar in 1991 when it was being attacked by
8 the Serbs and being shelled very heavily, and certainly the levels of
9 destruction that I saw in parts of the Muslim-controlled parts of Mostar
10 were as great as in Vukovar.
11 Q. Also at the beginning of the documentary, you stated that,
12 roughly - I don't recall the exact words - I think you said that the HVO
13 was aided and abetted by the Croatian army. Could you explain what you
14 meant by that and why?
15 A. I can explain it on a number of different levels, really. The
16 first of them -- sorry. It's just really loud in my ears. Where's the
17 volume control? Okay. All right. I can live with it. It's all right,
18 yes. Sorry.
19 I can explain it on a number of different levels. There was
20 evidence that I saw that there was an involvement by the Croatian army
21 and, by extension, by the government in Zagreb, because I saw identity
22 papers that had been taken from prisoners, from Croat prisoners, some of
23 which were regular Croatian army IDs. Similar identities had also been
24 taken from bodies. In addition, I spoke the previous autumn in -- yes, in
25 1992, September/October, to Dario Kordic in Busovaca, somewhere near
1 there, you know, who was a well-connected Croat, who told me there was a
2 connection with Zagreb.
3 In addition, at the time, other journalists had looked into it and
4 had seen a lot of connections there. Plus, some of the uniforms that
5 members of the HVO were wearing were effectively the same as Croatian army
6 uniforms. They even had very similar insignia, the very same style. It
7 was a connection which -- I also spoke to people in Zagreb in an informal
8 way who told me about it. So I think in all sorts of ways, it was clear
9 there was a strong connection between the government in Zagreb and their
10 ethnic brothers in Herzegovina.
11 Q. There was footage that we saw, nighttime footage, of people
12 walking across the foot bridge, across the river from West into East
13 Mostar. Do you recall the date of that -- that that footage was taken?
14 A. Yes. I believe that was September the 29th, 1993. We were
15 filming that day in the east side of Mostar. We had a tip-off that it was
16 happening, and we went down and filmed it. And I've also -- I've checked
17 the date.
18 Q. And then after that, the documentary showed some people you were
19 talking to who had just entered East Mostar from the other side. What was
20 the place where those interviews occurred?
21 A. The interviews took place in a -- a bombed out -- it was a theatre
22 or a cinema that was in the centre of the enclave on the east side of
23 Mostar. After those people crossed the river, they were taken up there by
24 soldiers and were kept there certainly for that night. It seemed to be
25 something of a reception centre - that was what it was being used as -
1 where they took people and gave them their first night's shelter after
2 they arrived in the east side of Mostar.
3 Q. Did you see people moving across from West Mostar at other times
4 during either of those two periods which you spent in East Mostar?
5 A. Yes, I did. On a number of different occasions I saw and I
6 interviewed people who had crossed over from the west side of Mostar. On
7 that night, that was when I saw the biggest single group. But also, you
8 may recall from the documentary, the -- there was a scene where we were
9 talking to some soldiers, and then some old people came. That was at
10 another crossing point elsewhere. That was actually on the other side of
11 the river, on the west side of the river, because we crossed the old
12 bridge to get there and people would cross from there.
13 Plus, in addition, in my trip there, my earlier trip in August, I
14 met people who had -- Muslims who had come in from the -- some of the
15 surrounding villages, surrounding villages - in this particular case, I
16 think to the south of the enclave - and they all told the same kinds of
18 Q. Did you see any Muslim men, particularly Muslim men of military
19 age, coming across from West Mostar?
20 A. I saw no men of military age. The men that I saw were all old men
21 and very, you know, old men. I would say 70-plus, late 60s. No one
22 younger than that.
23 The overwhelming majority of people who came over were women and
24 children. I don't think I saw any boys above the age of-- I don't think I
25 saw any boys who were reaching puberty, who were shaving. I would say
1 maximum 11 or 12.
2 Q. Some of the footage that we saw was taken at the front line
3 position on the west side of Mostar. Did any of the Armija, the Bosnian
4 army soldiers, that you spoke to talk about HVO's use of Muslim prisoners?
5 A. Yes, I heard from a number of different sources a similar kind of
6 story. It was that the Muslim prisoners would be used as human shields
7 either in advance of an attack - mainly in advance of attacks, actually.
8 Occasionally they talked about them having to do forced labour, building
9 trenches, that kind of thing. But the stories that stood out were ones
10 where they were -- there was one story where they said that Muslim
11 prisoners had had to walk ahead of a tank that was moving up, also that
12 they had been sent in front of attacks or they had been pushed into no
13 man's land between the two front lines when on the HVO side there was some
14 military activity going on. I heard that on two separate occasions from
15 different people.
16 Q. Could you tell us about the shelling. We saw shells falling,
17 explosions happening in East Mostar. Could you talk about the frequency
18 of the shelling when you were there and whether particular areas or
19 positions were subject to more intense shelling than other areas?
20 A. The whole time that I was there on the two visits shelling was a
21 pretty constant fact of life. Shelling could happen at any time. There
22 really wasn't much of a pattern to it that I could discern. And you know,
23 I had spent a long time in Sarajevo and in other places where there was
24 shelling, so you would try and look for a pattern, because there would be
25 times when it might be safer or not safe to go out. But in East Mostar, I
1 could never see a particular pattern to it, and the shells could land
3 Shelling was -- there was always a chance essentially that
4 everybody took when they went outside that they could -- that a mortar -
5 generally mortars it would be - that a mortar shell could land and kill
6 them. That's how the vast majority of the casualties that I saw received
7 their wounds. A shell would land near them, and they would be killed or
8 wounded by the fragmentation of the shell. There wasn't any pattern in
9 terms of where they were landing or how often they were coming in or their
10 frequency or their intensity. Sometimes there would be relatively calm
11 periods for even a couple of hours, and then there would be a more intense
12 period, you know. Like I say, you couldn't discern a pattern.
13 Q. Sniping, could you describe the sniping activity and its effect on
14 the population in East Mostar?
15 A. The prospect of being shot dead by a sniper was ever present for
16 the civilian population there. There were places where it was impossible
17 for it to happen because they were sheltered. But in basically all the
18 main thoroughfares, there were places which people had to cross. There
19 were places which you knew that if you were there, there was a chance of
20 being sniped at. And in some places, there was a risk of being hit from
21 two different directions.
22 There was, for example - on the main road, I think it's Tito
23 Street that runs from where the military headquarters was to where the
24 hospital was, the war hospital was, which was a distance of probably total
25 about 500 yards - there was a road junction which you would have to cross
1 which you could be hit from two different directions there. Many people
2 were killed around there. They put up signs saying: "Warning, sniper."
3 And there was a way around the back going through someone's house in which
4 you could avoid it. But sometimes, human beings being what they are, they
5 would run across for whatever reason and often people would get hit.
6 The effect of sniping was, in my opinion, to - not just my
7 opinion, based on what I could see - was to terrorise the population.
8 There was a constant fear of being hit by a sniper, which everybody who
9 was in East Mostar at that particular time shared.
10 Q. And Mr. Bowen, my last question: During the two time periods
11 which you were in East Mostar filming, did the Bosnian authorities place
12 any restrictions on where you could go, what you could film, and were
13 there any restrictions, in fact, that you encountered in terms of where
14 you could go and what you could do?
15 A. No. There were no restrictions placed on us by the Bosnian
16 authorities there, by the civil authority, or by the military authorities,
17 who were the people who really had power in the town at the time. We
18 placed restrictions on ourselves, based on danger, based on not going to
19 places where we weren't quite sure what was happening. We would always
20 try to find some kind of a guide if we were trying to get to a front-line
21 area, because I think it would have been foolhardy to go without one.
22 But on the east side, where the bulk of the civilians were, we
23 moved very freely. I got to know local people. I could walk around
24 absolutely freely. We would go to people's houses. We didn't have a
25 minder or a guide with us. As I say, we had guides going to front-line
itions, but that's because we wanted them. At no time also while we
2 were there in front-line positions did they say, "Don't film that, don't
3 film this." We could do what we wanted. They also didn't place any
4 restrictions on who we spoke to or what we said to them.
5 Q. Thank you, sir.
6 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I have no further questions.
7 JUDGE LIU: Any cross-examination? Yes, Mr. Seric.
8 Cross-examined by Mr. Seric:
9 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Bowen. My name is Branko
10 Seric, and I'm representing one of the accused in this case, Mr. Vinko
12 At the beginning, I should like to ask you how you were able to
13 reach East Mostar.
14 A. On the first trip when I went there in August, I linked up -- I
15 had heard from the United Nations, from the UNHCR, that there was a way to
16 get in with the Bosnian army, so I travelled from Sarajevo to Jablanica,
17 and in Jablanica we made some inquiries. We linked up there with
18 representatives of the Bosnian army who were staying at the hotel
19 there - I think it's called the Hotel Bosna - and they explained to us
20 that yes, they had a supply route that went from an area just south of
21 Jablanica, on foot, across the mountains. It was a military supply route,
22 effectively. And we asked if we could join one of these wagon trains of
23 horses, mule trains, and they said yes, we could.
24 We also linked up with a man called Humo, who was one of the
25 commanders there. Coincidentally, he was in Jablanica, and he spoke good
1 English, and he said he would show us where to go. So we linked up with
2 them and walked in. That was in August.
3 When we returned in September, we had contact with two British
4 officials, one of whom worked for UNHCR, Jerrie Hulme, and one of whom
5 worked for the EU monitoring group, Martin Garrod. They, between them -
6 and Martin Garrod was particularly helpful - negotiated for us to enter
7 the east side of Mostar in our own vehicle, following Garrod's vehicle.
8 To get there, we crossed over the airport and drove in that way.
9 JUDGE LIU: Witness, I have to remind you that you have to speak
10 very slowly.
11 THE WITNESS: I apologise.
12 JUDGE LIU: The interpreters have some difficulties to follow you.
13 THE WITNESS: I'll do my best. Do I need to repeat anything?
14 JUDGE LIU: No. Thank you.
15 THE WITNESS: Okay. I thought I was speaking slowly.
16 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] May I just ask for this overhead
17 projector to be lowered down a little bit so that I could see the witness
18 properly. Thank you very much.
19 THE WITNESS: [Previous translation continues] ...
20 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Would you please continue, Mr. Bowen. What happened after you
22 went across to the eastern side of town in September?
23 A. When we entered the east side of Mostar in September, nobody was
24 expecting us. Because of the difficulties of the situation, it hadn't
25 been possible to make a telephone call or anything like that. There were
1 no telephones working, and as far as I know, nobody on that side had a
2 satellite phone. Satellite phones at that time were much less common.
3 So when we got into the east side of Mostar in September, we drove
4 into the centre of the town. We came in in an armoured Land Rover. We
5 then tried to link up with the people who I had got to know when I had
6 been there in August.
7 So we went first of all to the military headquarters, and I found
8 Humo, the man who appears in the documentary. So I told them that we were
9 there. I also went to the hospital and saw the doctor, who also appeared,
10 the chief doctor, told him we were there, explained what we were doing.
11 We found a place to stay, which was in a radio station that they had set
12 up, and we set about doing our work.
13 Q. You stated a moment ago that you had witnessed the enthusiasm of
14 the BH army soldiers and how dedicated they were to their war effort.
15 Esad Humo told you in front of the camera that even Alija Izetbegovic
16 could sign a peace agreement, but as far as he was concerned, it meant
17 nothing whatsoever to him. Could this statement be explained by what you
18 have just told us about, that is, by his dedication to the war?
19 A. I think he said not that Izetbegovic would sign a peace agreement
20 and he wouldn't follow it. I think he said that if Izetbegovic decided
21 that they would divide the city, then he wouldn't accept it. I felt that
22 the motivation of people like Humo on that side came from the fact that
23 they didn't believe that they had another choice. The vast majority of
24 them had been civilians before that, and they had found themselves, as
25 people had on all sides in the former Yugoslavia, they had found
1 themselves in the military and they had to fight. And because of the
2 particular circumstances on the east side of Mostar - it was a small
3 enclave with a lot of civilians, quite a lot of fighting men as
4 well - they were involved in what they believed at the time was a struggle
5 for life and death. They thought it was very, very simple.
6 Q. Thank you for your answer, Mr. Bowen, but I think that we can
7 achieve the objective of my cross-examination with answers even more
9 We saw a room in your film which contained some detained Croats.
10 Do you know where that particular footage was filmed? Or let me put it
11 directly to you: Was it the fourth elementary school which was located in
12 the immediate vicinity of the health centre, or rather, the hospital that
13 we saw on the film?
14 A. I don't know if it was a school. I can tell you how it was
15 filmed, because I was there. We had heard that they were holding
16 prisoners. We asked if we could see them, and they agreed. So they took
17 us into a building. It didn't seem to be like a school to me, I must
18 say. It looked -- we were in a cellar, lower down, and it seemed more
19 like a house or a commercial building.
20 We went into the cellar. It wasn't particularly close to this
21 medical centre, to the hospital, no. It was -- you know, the whole area
22 was, anyway, quite small, but it was not in that immediate vicinity of the
23 hospital. It was probably a few minutes' walk from it. But, you know, as
24 I made the point in the film, in that enclave, nothing was more than a few
25 minutes' walk away. If anything, it was closer to the military
1 headquarters than to the hospital.
2 Q. We heard a comment in the film, something to the effect that you
3 were not able to speak with the detainees. Was it that you were actually
4 prohibited from talking to them, or were they prohibited from speaking to
5 you in front of the cameras?
6 A. I think it was more the second thing, that they were prohibited
7 from talking to us. I did try -- I think also -- no, I think it was
8 mainly that, that they were prohibited from talking to us. I did try to
9 speak to one of them, and he just said nothing. He just looked down at
10 the time. I don't recall if they told us not to speak to them. Perhaps
11 they did.
12 Q. When you were filming this particular portion of the footage, that
13 is, the Croat detainees -- rather, when was it, if you remember, that you
14 filmed the Croat detainees?
15 A. The Croat detainees who were filmed in the room underground were
16 filmed during the second trip. The earlier pictures of Croat detainees
17 where they were, if you remember, pictured exhuming bodies, digging up
18 bodies, were filmed in August on my first trip there. That's right. And
19 the picture also of the Croat detainee on the front line was filmed during
20 the September trip.
21 Q. We saw Dr. Dragan Milavic in the film. While talking to him, or
22 perhaps someone else, were you able to learn that every Croat detainee was
23 made to give blood on a daily basis, and the quantity they took was
24 350 grams of blood per day, without their permission?
25 A. No. That's the first I've heard of that.
1 Q. In the film, you mentioned - I don't know whether it was you
2 personally or someone else who was doing the soundtrack - that there were
3 also Croats within the BH army. Did you have an opportunity to meet any
4 such Croats on the -- in East Mostar at that time?
5 A. Yes, I met Croats from the BH army in East Mostar.
6 Q. Was that, perhaps, Slobodan Maric?
7 A. I don't remember that name.
8 Q. I'm referring to the individual which has been indicted by this
9 Tribunal. He's a fugitive from justice at the moment, but there's also an
10 indictment against him in Mostar. Do you happen to know anything about
12 A. No. I'm not familiar with the case at all.
13 Q. Since you must have done some research for your film, are you
14 familiar with the fact that at the time you were making this film, that
15 there were only seven Croats in East Mostar, whereas there were 9.000
16 Muslims living in West Mostar at that time?
17 A. Yeah. I did a lot of research based on the time that I was there,
18 and I can tell you that I met many people, more than seven, who claimed to
19 be either fully or partly ethnic Croat, people who were -- yeah,
20 definitely, I met many more than seven. That comes -- that suggestion
21 that there were only seven comes as a complete surprise to me. And it's
22 not what I found. I found that there were many more than that and many
23 people who said that they were either fully ethnically Croat or partly
24 ethnically Croat from a mixed marriage.
25 Q. Did you do any filming in Croat hospitals on the west side of
tar where there were also dying civilians, the elderly, the wounded,
2 women, children?
3 A. Not for this particular trip, no, because this film was about the
4 east side. In the course of my time reporting the wars of former
5 Yugoslavia, I filmed on all sides, but this particular film was about what
6 was happening in one particular place at one particular time. So for this
7 one, no, I didn't.
8 Q. Thank you very much.
9 And my final question: While you were walking about over there in
10 East Mostar, did you see that the Muslims also had snipers who were
11 targeting the other side?
12 A. I didn't see snipers insofar as I didn't go to sniper positions
13 with snipers using sniper rifles. However, the suggestion that they had
14 snipers comes as no surprise to me. I would be very surprised if they
15 didn't have snipers. Like I say, I didn't see them myself, but quite
16 likely they had snipers. Certainly, they were firing at both sides.
18 MR. SERIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honours.
19 I have no further questions.
20 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
21 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Cross-examined by Mr. Krsnik:
23 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Witness. I would like to
24 introduce myself to you. I am Kresimir Krsnik, attorney at law, and I am
25 Defence counsel for one of the accused here. I shall be very brief. I
1 would just like to put a few questions to you.
2 For the sake of impartiality, I believe that you can answer these
3 questions, if you know the answers to them. You are an experienced war
4 reporter according to all the rules of impartiality of your profession. I
5 believe that you will agree with me on that, won't you?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. We will also agree that images of war and suffering from war is
8 not something foreign to you because you have seen that in many places
9 that you reported from?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Could you please be so kind as to answer the following question:
12 Were you interested in the fate of non-Muslims who were in the territory
13 that was under the absolute control of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and
14 that is the area that you travelled through from Jablanica to Mostar? I
15 don't know if you've ever heard of Konjic. Did you investigate over
16 there? Were you there doing your own journalistic work? Did you
17 investigate what was going on in these territories that were under BH army
18 control, that is, the area that you travelled through where you actually
20 A. The area I travelled through on that particular trip when I was
21 heading from Sarajevo to Jablanica - and I have heard of Konjic, yes - I
22 didn't stop to do journalistic investigations about what was happening en
23 route. I would say, though, that in all the reporting that I did during
24 the wars of former Yugoslavia, from 1991 right through to 1999 in Kosovo,
25 I've always been interested in the plight of all civilians. In fact, that
1 has been the main thrust of my reporting, of all different ethnic groups.
2 Q. Precisely. Expecting this kind of answer, which is in line with
3 your impartiality, your knowledge, and your professionalism and your work
4 was unhindered, you never heard of the fourth elementary school in Mostar,
5 which is a few steps away from the hospital that you filmed and it was one
6 of the biggest camps for Croats in East Mostar and one of the major
7 indictments of this Tribunal has to do with that? And also, over 30
8 detainees were killed there, and that has been established in proceedings
9 before the Mostar court. And this is a minute's walk away from the
11 A. Sorry, what's the question?
12 Q. While you did your work, did you realise that? And especially
13 when you were investigating civilians suffering and things like that, did
14 you come across that as well? Were you aware of that? I'm just asking.
15 Nothing more.
16 A. I had never heard while I was there of the fourth elementary
17 school. I was aware that there were Croat detainees. And insofar as we
18 could, we filmed that and put it in the documentary. The specifics of
19 what was in the indictment though, no, I wasn't aware of that at the
21 Q. Distinguished witness, we will agree that the prisoners we saw on
22 the film were prisoners of war, military prisoners. Or rather, can you
23 explain to the Trial Chamber whether these were prisoners of war who were
24 civilians or military personnel, whereas in the fourth elementary school
25 that was a camp for civilian prisoners?
1 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer.
2 MR. STRINGER: I apologise for the interruption, but I would
3 caution against counsel inserting facts into the record which are not
4 already in evidence, such as this fourth elementary school, and then
5 building on that assertion in subsequent questions as though it is
7 The fact is there's no evidence about the fourth elementary school
8 that he is asking about that I can recall that has been presented at this
9 stage during this trial. And so the witness has said he doesn't know
10 anything about it. And I would respectfully suggest that that should be
11 the end of the inquiry.
12 JUDGE LIU: In the film, we really saw some Croat prisoners, and
13 we heard very clearly that the witness did not know anything about the
14 so-called fourth elementary school.
15 Mr. Krsnik, you may question about those prisoners, rather than to
16 lead this witness to certain particular locations. You may proceed,
17 Mr. Krsnik.
18 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] By all means, Your Honour. My
19 intention was very simple, I think, and it was easy to identify it as
20 such. Was the witness aware of this or not? If not, we'll move on. But
21 it had to do with what this witness said about the freedom of movement in
22 Mostar, unrestricted at that. I absolutely had no other intention, none
24 Q. Mr. Witness, could you please be so kind as to tell me whether you
25 know that the town of Mostar was shelled heavily during the Serb
1 aggression. Do you know about the number of buildings - I shall restrict
2 myself to buildings now only - were demolished during this shelling?
3 A. I know there had been earlier fighting there. My references to
4 the intensity of the shelling were really based on what I saw while I was
5 there. And while I was there, there was at times - not all of the time,
6 but at times, as you saw in the film - there was intense shelling coming
7 from the Croat side.
8 Q. Thank you. I think that this will be my last question. You
9 crossed the old bridge, as we saw on your film, so you came to the West
10 Bank. Do you know the depth of BH army positions, in metres, kilometres,
11 from the Neretva River to the delineation lines?
12 A. Not precisely in metres, but I know that -- my understanding was
13 that the front line was in a road called Bulevar, and it wasn't a
14 very -- it wasn't a very long distance, though at times like that, of
15 course, moving a short distance is very difficult. But I knew -- I could
16 see on the map where it was. It was shown to me. We went out to it as
18 Q. I'm asking you that, sir, because of another question I'm trying
19 to get to, and I would like to shorten this cross-examination as much as
20 possible. Do you remember a long line of buildings, apartment buildings,
21 going to the Neretva River which were a kind of shelter, viewed from the
22 Neretva? If you wish, I can even give you a map, if that would make it
23 easier for you. I'm asking you all of this -- I mean, of course we are
24 not treating you as a classical witness here. This is a conversation, to
25 put it that way, or at least I am treating you in that way. I'm asking
1 you this because when I saw the picture of that poor woman lying by the
2 Neretva and I saw the bridge too, and you were passing there -- and it is
3 practically impossible to have sniper fire there, because there are many
4 buildings there that are sort of like a shield, and those buildings were
5 held by the BH army. So that's my question. That is the purpose of my
6 question. Did you see that and did you pass there? Or perhaps I can make
7 this even shorter. Do you personally know that she was killed by sniper
8 fire, or did somebody tell you about this? Let me be as brief as
9 possible. Let me limit my questions to a minimum and not to bother you
10 with maps and things like that. That would be my question, then.
11 A. She was killed by a bullet, not by shrapnel. As for the
12 apartments, I don't remember those apartments. In fact, my recollection
13 of where that woman was was that it was a fairly open area which
14 has -- it's not very built up around there, in fact, in the area where she
15 was shot. So I don't recall those apartments, no.
16 Q. Well, it can also be seen on your footage, the Hotel Ruza on the
17 other side. Of course, it's demolished, and it was held by the BH army.
18 It's on the other side of the river, but it can be seen on your footage:
19 the Ruza Hotel, the buildings, and also the old bridge on the other side.
20 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer.
21 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, counsel now is not putting any
22 questions to the witness; he's just arguing with the witness - that's my
23 suggestion - based on images he saw on the footage. I think that he
24 should put questions to the witness.
25 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik. What's your question?
1 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
2 Q. My question is: Where could that bullet have come from, to the
3 best of your knowledge?
4 A. If you remember the shot, the picture of the woman, the image you
5 saw I think just before it was of the hotel, but the actual location was
6 somewhere -- wasn't directly opposite it, is what I'm saying. That's the
7 first thing.
8 The second thing is: My assumption in these things is that if a
9 civilian -- I don't believe that they were shooting their own people, if
10 that's what you're trying to say. I don't believe that the woman was shot
11 by a Muslim sniper at the time. Sure, I couldn't do a ballistics
12 examination of the bullet, but I felt, based on what was going on there at
13 the time, based on a pattern of behaviour which I could discern as a
14 journalist, that it was a fair assumption to make that the shot came from
15 the western side of town.
16 Q. Thank you very much, Mr. Witness. That's precisely what I wanted
17 to hear. This is an assumption, a fair assumption. Because we heard even
18 in your film that a man admitted that he had to throw a grenade among his
19 own people. It's times of war; right?
20 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Could I just have a second, Your
21 Honours, please? Because my colleague says that she has some
22 suggestions. I do apologise. Just a second, please.
23 [Defence counsel confer]
24 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Distinguished Witness, we have heard Mr. Humo's views. You have
1 talked to Mr. Pasalic -- or rather, have you talked to Mr. Pasalic?
2 A. Yes, many times.
3 Q. Did he tell you what he was fighting for and what kind of a state
4 he wanted to have?
5 A. Did he? I'm trying to recall. Hang on. With Pasalic, I spoke
6 more about directly military, strategic matters. I don't recall him
7 giving his views on what particular state that he wanted after the war or
8 what he was fighting for.
9 Q. On the basis of your experience and your tours of various theaters
10 of war, do you think that a general could refuse orders issued by a higher
11 command? In this case, it's Sarajevo, and we heard this in your film,
12 that he did not obey orders from Sarajevo and that he didn't care about
13 orders from Sarajevo.
14 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, that's the comment that
15 was heard as he was walking up the hill of Hum. But then the witness is
16 here. He can say so.
17 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, you are asking the opinions from
18 this witness rather than the facts.
19 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] You're right, Your Honour. You're
20 right. I withdraw that question.
21 Q. Tell me: When you were in East Mostar - this is my last
22 question - there was arms trading with the Serbs or tanks [as
23 interpreted], and tank crews were rented out from them, and heavy
24 weapons. Did you actually see that as you toured the area?
25 A. I didn't see Serb troops, but I was told by various people there
1 that they were doing deals with the Serbs, that they were buying weapons
2 from the Serbian -- the Serb side. As for renting heavy weapons, I never
3 heard about that. The kind of things that I saw were lighter weapons,
4 mainly Kalashnikovs and RPGs.
5 Could I just answer -- you didn't give me a chance to answer the
6 assertions you were making too about this assumption about where the
7 bullet was coming from, because you -- before I could answer, you spoke to
8 your colleague. Could I address that question?
9 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Yes, please.
10 THE WITNESS: I just wanted to say that in covering a war, of
11 course you can't be at all times -- when you see the consequences of a
12 shot, you can't always be where the shot was fired from. When I used the
13 word "assumption," maybe it was the wrong word. What I really meant was
14 deduction. You have to deduce from the balance of probabilities in a
15 situation what happened, based not just on that situation but on the kinds
16 of things that were going on over a period of time. That was why we came
17 to the conclusions that we did.
18 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Those were all the questions that the
19 Defence had for you. Thank you very much for your answers, sir, and also
20 for your patience.
21 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Witness, for helping us by giving your
23 Is there any re-examination?
24 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. Just a very few questions.
25 Re-examined by Mr. Stringer:
1 Q. Mr. Bowen, you mentioned that you reported on the conflict in
2 Vukovar in 1991, I believe. Just so we all know, what country is Vukovar
3 located in?
4 A. Vukovar is in Croatia.
5 Q. Who were the victims of the crimes that were taking place in
6 Vukovar when you were there in 1991?
7 A. Croatians.
8 Q. Did you report on that as a journalist for the BBC?
9 A. Yes, I did extensively report on the situation of Croatians in
10 1991. Actually not just in Vukovar but in other places as well like
12 Q. My final question: Why didn't you make a film or a documentary
13 about what was happening in West Mostar?
14 A. I didn't have the opportunity. I would very much have liked to
15 have had that opportunity to do it. I think it was a very interesting
16 situation. We did try and -- my team - not me personally - did try to
17 make some overtures to the Bosnian Croat authorities on the west side of
18 Mostar, but they were rebuffed. They wouldn't let us work there with the
19 freedom that we had on the other side. So therefore, there was an idea,
20 as I say, to do one, but it didn't come off because we basically weren't
21 allowed to work freely there.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 MR. STRINGER: No further questions, Mr. President.
24 JUDGE LIU: Any questions from Judges? Judge Clark.
25 Questioned by the Court:
1 JUDGE CLARK: Mr. Bowen, it must have been fairly harrowing for
2 you to view that film again after all these years, as I think it was very
3 harrowing for all of us to watch. I have a question to ask in relation to
4 the geography of the place which is not clear to me. East Mostar appears
5 to have been a surrounding enclave that was being bombarded morning, noon,
6 and night, as you said. What was the situation on the east side of
7 Mostar? Were there Croats there, or was that Serbian territory? Further
9 A. Further east there was Serbs, but my understanding was that
10 they -- the enclave was completely surrounded by the Bosnian Croats.
11 However, on the east side of the enclave, the lines were a bit more
12 porous. It was possible to get through in different places either to
13 connect up with the Serbs or to connect up with their route they took to
14 get out to Jablanica. So I mean it was a bona fide siege insofar as
15 people couldn't get out. It was just the military men, as I say, could
16 find a way out through the front lines on the north and to the north and
17 north-east, was my understanding certainly, because that was where I came
18 in. Whether it was possible elsewhere, I don't know because I wasn't -- I
19 didn't try and do it myself.
20 JUDGE CLARK: I was just wondering what was the attitude of the
21 Serbs to the population of Mostar - do you know? - during this critical
23 A. I think my understanding of the official attitude of the Serb side
24 was they were quite happy to see Croats and Muslims fighting each other.
25 And you know, it suited them to see that going on. And for whatever
1 reason, for reasons of their own, they didn't intervene except to stir the
2 pot a little bit by selling weapons to one side.
3 JUDGE CLARK: Was there any question of humanitarian aid coming
4 into East Mostar from the eastern end?
5 A. The only humanitarian aid that I saw come in came in UN convoys.
6 Throughout this whole time, there were Spanish UNPROFOR troops who were
7 present in the town. And in August, while I was there, the first convoy
8 from the UNHCR came in. And after that, there was limited access.
9 Convoys would come in sometimes, but that was all United Nations stuff.
10 There wasn't anything coming from any of the other sides there.
11 JUDGE CLARK: Could you see any evidence of humanitarian aid being
12 prevented from coming to the aid of East Mostar by any authority? And if
13 you did see that, perhaps you could describe it.
14 A. The only evidence I have on that is based on conversations with
15 Jerrie Hulme who was one of the -- he was basically in charge of the UNHCR
16 there. He was basically their senior man who had come in to Mostar. I
17 didn't ask him, to be honest with you, about the detail of the
18 negotiations, but he said that there were a lot of holdups in the -- that
19 they would like to run regular aid convoys in to Mostar because there were
20 major humanitarian needs there. But they weren't able to do it because it
21 took a massive amount of negotiation to get the supplies in, which came up
22 from the Croatian coast. And they came up from -- I think the road would
23 come past Medjugorje in the Croat-controlled area, and then in that way.
24 So he talked about the complexity of the negotiations and how difficult it
25 was. But I mean, like I say, I didn't talk to him in sort of blow by blow
1 about whoclass=Section10>
did what and when.
2 JUDGE CLARK: Thank you, Mr. Bowen.
3 JUDGE LIU: Any questions out of the Judge's question? Yes,
4 Mr. Krsnik.
5 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have only one question
6 related to Judge Clark's question. Again, this is a question of
7 geography. I would also like to have this clarified. So if the Trial
8 Chamber agrees, perhaps we could try to clarify the situation with this
10 So in that case, I would like to ask the Registry for Exhibit P2,
11 please. I think that that is the easiest way of proceeding as far as
12 geography is concerned.
13 JUDGE LIU: Have you got the right map this time?
14 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, I always try to make sure
15 whether Stolac is there or not, but I still have the other map, too, Your
16 Honours, without Stolac. It's still in the binder.
17 Further cross-examination by Mr. Krsnik:
18 Q. [Interpretation] Witness, perhaps it would not be a bad thing if
19 you took the map into your hands so that you could see it more closely.
20 It would be easier to communicate that way, I think. Can you see Mostar
21 there? Can you see an orange line leading to Jablanica, and then going in
22 two directions, Jablanica and Sarajevo, and then another one going to
23 Prozor? That's the road; right? Further up.
24 A. Yeah. I can see that, yes.
25 Q. Now, of course, it's clear, Sarajevo, and then you have to go to
1 Jablanica and to Konjic. That's the way you had to travel. Is that
3 A. Jablanica then Konjic -- no, I don't think we went to Konjic.
4 When we travelled from Sarajevo to Jablanica, what happened was we came
5 down the main road from Sarajevo up to, you know -- and I can't remember
6 the exact point, because the road was cut.
7 And then we had to go -- if you see, there's a lake. My
8 recollection is that we went up through a forest from that road through
9 some very windy forest tracks. And then we crossed over, I think it was a
10 railway bridge actually, which was being used also for road traffic,
11 because the BH army didn't control the whole of the main road. So it was
12 quite easy to drive down from -- once we got on to the road out of
13 Sarajevo, it was quite easy to drive down until the road was cut, which
14 was somewhere near Konjic. And I don't recall whether it was in Konjic or
15 before Konjic. And then we went up and around to Jablanica, and from
16 Jablanica -- the trail where we walked started at Glogosnica.
17 Q. If I understood you correctly, Witness, this is September 1993,
18 and you are trying to say that this municipality here, the municipality of
19 Konjic, the municipality of Jablanica, and now this road going from Mostar
20 to Jablanica, that that was not under BH control throughout?
21 A. It was not under their control, no, because we walked with them
22 across the mountains. It took 20 hours, and their soldiers were walking
23 there, too. I'm sure if the road was open, they would have used it. No.
24 I mean I also heard from the UN that the only way in was through this
25 mountain track across those hills from Glogosnica down to Mostar.
1 Q. So to the best of your recollection, from this road here - and now
2 I'm looking towards the west, Konjic, Jablanica, towards Konjic and
3 Jablanica - this was not territory -- I mean all the way up to Mostar.
4 Actually, to the right, or if you want, to the east of the Neretva River,
5 going parallel to the road, because the road follows the Neretva up to
6 Jablanica, and then there is this little lake called Neretvica because of
7 the hydroelectric power plant there.
8 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Stringer.
9 MR. STRINGER: I object to this question and this line of
10 questions which is, I believe, beyond the scope of the questioning made by
11 Judge Clark.
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik. Are you doubting that this witness
13 has never been to this place? What's the relevance to the issue?
14 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] No, certainly not. The relevance
15 is -- I'll tell you straight away. First I wanted to handle this whole
16 thing geographically. We are -- we will try to prove during our Defence
17 case that in September, Mostar was not an enclave. I just wanted to help
18 the Court at this point, to clarify this from a geographical point of
19 view. Nothing else. I wanted to do this for the Trial Chamber. And if
20 the Trial Chamber thinks this is not necessary, then I will put no further
21 questions. Then I'm finished. Thank you.
22 JUDGE CLARK: Mr. Krsnik, I'm amazed at what you just said. This
23 journalist, who has spent six weeks, I think, in Mostar, has given
24 evidence for quite a while, and we've seen his film describing Mostar as
25 an enclave, and he's clarified for me that there was no freedom on the
1 east side, and you now say that it's going to be your defence case that
2 Mostar was not an enclave.
3 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] No. No.
4 JUDGE CLARK: Well, that's what the translation says.
5 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] No. No. No. You could take a road,
6 Vrapcici, Potoci, and Prigradjani, and that the BH army held that under
7 their control. That is a historical fact. And then I asked the witness
8 further than that. That's the only thing I want to clarify, nothing else.
9 JUDGE CLARK: Well, then, you should have put those questions in
10 direct examination specifically to Mr. Bowen, because he's in a position
11 to refute it. It's not the time, at the end of the case, to bring your
12 witnesses to prove something that has never been put, because this Trial
13 Chamber won't like it then. You must put your case to the specific
14 witnesses when they're here, not when they've left.
15 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] You're quite right, Your Honour. My
16 apologies to the Chamber.
17 Q. Sir, the road leading from Mostar, and then via the village of
18 Vrapcici, which is the first one on the orange line, the next one being
19 Potoci, and so on - so looking from where we are now, it would have been
20 on the right bank of the Neretva, along the road which runs parallel to
21 the river - did you use that particular road in the month of September
22 1993 to enter and exit the area of East Mostar?
23 A. I don't recall the name -- as I said in the film, we went to the
24 northern -- we went to the northern edge of the enclave, to some of the
25 outlying villages, which was the place where -- unfortunately, I don't
1 have my notebook with me, so I don't have the precise names, otherwise I
2 would be able to tell you. But that was the place where I had arrived
3 with the Bosnian army in August, when I had walked from Glogosnica, near
4 Jablanica. And it was possible to get by car about, I'd say,
5 approximately 4 or 5 miles out of town to the north, but it was a
6 contested road, where we were fired on. That's where they had the
7 searchlights. Both times I went down that road -- in August, when I
8 travelled over it with the Bosnian army in one of their trucks, we were
9 fired on, and when I went out there in the BBC vehicle, to the edge of it,
10 we were also fired on, in both directions, coming in and going out.
11 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have no further
12 questions for the witness.
13 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Witness, for helping us by giving your
14 evidence. We wish you a good trip back home.
15 THE WITNESS: Thank you very much.
16 JUDGE LIU: The usher will show you out of the room.
17 [The witness withdrew]
18 JUDGE LIU: At this stage, are there any documents to attend?
19 Yes, Mr. Stringer.
20 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, we tender the videotape documentary
21 which is marked as Exhibit 586. English -- I'm sorry. We have
22 transcripts of the videotape as well, both in English and French, which
23 have been in the booths, and a French version could also be made available
24 to Judge Diarra if she wishes to have that.
25 JUDGE LIU: Any objections?
. SERIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
3 Mr. Krsnik?
4 MR. KRSNIK: No objection, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. This videotape has been admitted
6 into the evidence.
7 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I'm informed that I
8 should -- apparently the transcripts have also been given exhibit numbers,
9 and so that would be Exhibit 587 would be the English and French
10 transcript of the documentary, and so we tender those also.
11 JUDGE LIU: Well, I believe that those transcripts will go with
12 that videotape. Without that videotape, certainly we will not admit that
13 transcript alone. So we had better have another type of the numbering,
14 for instance, a slash, you know, 1 or 2, or certain things.
15 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I believe the videotape itself is
16 marked as Exhibit 586, and then the transcripts are marked as Exhibit 587,
17 so that they do have different exhibit numbers, if that's --
18 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Any objections? Mr. Krsnik?
19 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour, but we also expect
20 the Croatian translation as well.
21 JUDGE LIU: Well, this Trial Chamber has made decisions concerning
22 the translations of the B/C/S version. We believe that the transcripts of
23 this videotape is within the scope of that incidence, which I mean that
24 it's within the time frame of what happened during that period, so that
25 should be translated into the B/C/S.
1 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I've been informed that in fact it
2 has been translated and it will be provided.
3 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Is there any number for that translation?
4 MR. STRINGER: I would propose to simply add that to Exhibit 587,
5 which already consists of the English and the French language transcripts,
6 so that then 587 could also include the B/C/S translation.
7 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. So document P587 is admitted
8 into evidence.
9 Yes, Mr. Meek.
10 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, in the spirit of this
11 Trial Chamber's ruling on the translation of documents and exhibits to be
12 admitted, we were not provided the Serbo-Bosnian-Croatian or Croatian
13 transcript prior to the tape being shown. In the future, we would
14 appreciate it if the Prosecutor would give us the translated documents
15 prior to the witness's testimony so that our clients could review those
16 prior to it. As you see now, we will get them later and our client will
17 be able to look at them, but Mr. Bowen will be in London.
18 JUDGE LIU: I believe that if a translation exists, the Prosecutor
19 will do his best to provide those translations beforehand, so that to
20 facilitate your client to understand the contents of that videotape.
21 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I'm informed the B/C/S version was
22 contained in the 17 binders that were distributed to the Defence prior to
23 the beginning of the trial.
24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
25 Now shall we have the previous witness?
. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. It was a closed-session
2 witness, but we would be prepared --
3 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the closed session.
4 [Closed session]
13 Pages 5838 to 5843 redacted – closed session.
15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 3.59 p.m.,
16 to be reconvened on Friday, the 16th day of
17 November, 2001, at 9.30 a.m.