1 Wednesday, 16 January 2002
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.
5 JUDGE LIU: Call the case, please, Madam Registrar.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
7 IT-98-34-T, the Prosecutor versus Naletilic and Martinovic.
8 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Usher -- yes, Mr. Krsnik.
9 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honour. I would
10 just like to inform you that my client is not feeling well today. He
11 definitely wants to be present at the cross-examination. We do not know
12 how long it will take. He believes that he can make it through the
13 cross-examination, but after I finish my cross-examination, perhaps if he
14 does not feel better, he would like to be excused. This is all I wanted
15 to bring up this morning. Thank you.
16 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, your request is granted. And with
17 your client's absence, we'll continue to do the cross-examination. Is
18 that all right?
19 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] My client is hoping to be able to
20 attend the entire cross-examination of this witness, and I will give you
21 an update after that on his health. Thank you.
22 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Usher, would you please bring in the witness
23 after you pull down -- pulling down the blinds.
24 [The witness entered court]
25 JUDGE LIU: Good morning, Witness.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
2 JUDGE LIU: Did you have a good rest yesterday?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So-so.
4 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik.
5 WITNESS: Witness AC [Resumed]
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 Cross-examined by Mr. Krsnik:
8 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Witness.
9 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Can we just have the ELMO lowered,
11 Q. Now we can see each other. Good morning. Let me introduce
12 myself. I am the attorney for Mladen Naletilic, and I will ask you some
13 questions. I will ask you, as I asked of every witness, to please pause
14 between questions and answer for the benefit of the interpreters who are
15 involved in a difficult task. And I would also like you to listen
16 carefully to what I ask and please try to make your answers as concise as
17 possible. I'm going to especially focus on what you personally have seen
18 or heard. Thank you for your cooperation, and I would like to move to my
19 questions now.
20 Can you confirm for me that the evidence that you gave yesterday
21 and the day before yesterday and the statement that you gave to the
22 Prosecution -- Prosecution in this case, it would seem that you personally
23 never saw Tuta in Mostar?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Can you also confirm for me - and again it would follow from your
1 answer - that you never saw Tuta and Baja together in Mostar?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Witness, can you also confirm to me on the basis of what you just
4 said that you were never in a position to hear any conversation, let alone
5 any orders that Tuta may have given to Baja in Mostar?
6 A. When you say "in Mostar," does that include Siroki Brijeg?
7 Q. No. I really am referring to Mostar. Siroki Brijeg is about 30
8 kilometres away from Mostar. This is why I limited myself exclusively to
10 A. No.
11 Q. Sir, when I say "Baja," I refer to Mr. Milicivic. We both agree
12 that we refer to Baja as Mr. Milicivic.
13 A. Mario Milicivic.
14 Q. Yes, Mario Milicivic.
15 So everything that you testified about on the basis of all that
16 you have said, it would not follow that what you have heard from him could
17 or could not have been that way. You only could believe in what he was
18 saying; is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Witness, regarding the ATG Benko Penavic, was it not formed out of
21 the 2nd Battalion, and did it not consist exclusively from the men from
22 the 2nd Battalion whose commander was first Tihomir Misic called Tiho
23 and later on his father, Dedo Misic? In other words, this man from the
24 ATG that you called Benko Penavic, were these men not exclusively the men
25 from the 2nd Battalion?
1 A. Yes. But they were selected men.
2 Q. Fine. Do you know - because at that time you were 17 years old -
3 did you know what brigade was the 2nd Battalion part of?
4 A. I think that that is a superfluous question.
5 Q. It may be superfluous, but do you know at all the command
6 structure in the city of Mostar? This is why I asked you the question.
7 But I don't want to go into any explanations now. My question is: Was
8 this battalion part of some brigade or a part of the defence
9 forces. Over perhaps to make it easier for you, who is the commander of
10 the 2nd Battalion?
11 A. Sir, I was talking about Dr. Naletilic, not 2nd Battalion of the
12 brigade. I was referring directly to ATG Benko Penavic.
13 Q. That is fine, sir. I am just trying to help the Trial Chamber and
14 all of us to clarify certain things in Mostar. Today we're not going to
15 talk only about the ATG Benko Penavic. And perhaps I should clarify this
16 question for you. Benko Penavic did not come out of nowhere. I want to
17 just lay out the history of this unit a little bit. But first of all, I
18 want to know, because you were 17 at that time, in other words you were
19 quite young at that time, do you know at all how this military structure,
20 this hierarchy in Mostar looked like? If you know, you know. If not, you
22 A. See, you said that I was 17. I was old enough to fight. So we
23 should not take age in any particular way.
24 Q. I agree with you, sir, completely. But if you would like to help
25 me and the Trial Chamber, with all due respect to everything you have said
1 so far. I'm going to ask you a specific question: Do you know who was
2 the commander of the defence of the city of Mostar?
3 A. In what period?
4 Q. Specifically in 1993.
5 A. I know. It was Tuta.
6 Q. Are -- People say this: "He was the one who was gathering cloths
7 and dispersing cloths." You claim that Mr. Naletilic was the Commander of
8 defence of the city of Mostar?
9 A. Perhaps I'm not saying that he was the commander of defence, but
10 he had everything under his control.
11 Q. You said that he had full control. In other words, he had command
12 control over all battalions, all brigades in the city of Mostar?
13 A. I would not be able to say whether he had control over all the
14 battalions, but for the most part of the defence forces of Mostar.
15 Q. Witness, you said that you took part in the war in 1992 and 1993
16 as a member of the HVO. Did you hear that there was a command of the
17 city -- the military commander of the city of Mostar?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Did you hear that there were brigade commanders, that there was
20 the headquarters?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Did you hear that there was the main headquarters of the HVO which
23 was also in Mostar?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Did you hear that there were operative zones?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Did you hear that the city of Mostar was -- the city of Mostar was
3 part of the south-east Herzegovina operative zone?
4 A. I wouldn't be able to answer that question.
5 Q. Witness, I told you at the beginning to please limit yourself to
6 saying what you personally know, especially what you saw and heard
7 personally, rather than hearsay. My learned friend asked you a lot about
8 those kinds of things. I'm going to ask you about what you personally saw
9 or heard. As a regular soldier and a member of the 2nd Battalion, you --
10 when you were in the 2nd Battalion, you did not know who was your superior
11 to your battalion. Listen, it's not funny. If you know, you know. But
12 if you don't know, you don't know. I'm -- I'm trying to test your
13 knowledge, and I would like your answers. I would be very grateful.
14 A. I'm going to try to answer all the questions that I can.
15 Q. Of course.
16 A. Also you should understand that the period between the time when
17 I left Mostar and now is ten years and that the structures and the
18 activities that took place in that city is something that is not also easy
19 to remember. But what I know is from whom I was receiving orders and if
20 there were any things that were not clear, with whom it was that they
21 needed to be cleared.
22 Q. I understand, and I thank you for this question. But in essence,
23 you don't know the truth. You could believe what people told you or not.
24 I think that we have agreed on that.
25 A. I would have put it this way: If Tuta had put Baja to lead this
1 Benko Penavic, he was the person to be trusted, to be believed. And if
2 that man said that things were in such and such a way, I was supposed to
3 believe it and follow it and do those things.
4 Q. Sir, would you agree with me the fact that Tuta had appointed Baja
5 is only your guess. You don't know personally that he did so.
6 A. I don't agree.
7 Q. Tell me, Witness, the front line on the Bulevar, how many units
8 were there?
9 A. Can you ask me more specific questions, please, because Bulevar
10 was a fairly long stretch. If you can ask me from where to where.
11 Q. It is clear where the line stretched from, Santiceva to the
13 A. I can say this: From the old cinema to the health centre, that
14 was the 4th Battalion, and Benko Penavic, and next to it was Stela. I did
15 not go to the other sectors of the front line so, I don't know.
16 Q. And what was the position held by the 4th Battalion?
17 A. They were around Podhum. It's either Podhum or Zahum, to the
18 ladies' park, and then it was ATG Benko Penavic, and then next to it was
19 ATG Skrobo.
20 Q. Have you heard of one of the commanders of the 4th Battalion
21 nicknamed Gaga?
22 A. Yes.
23 MR. KRSNIK: Can we go into the private session for a moment,
25 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the private session.
1 Wait, wait, wait.
2 Yes, now we are in the private session.
3 [Private session]
13 Page 7978 – redacted – private session
13 Page 7979 – redacted – private session
13 Page 7980 – redacted – private session
13 Page 7981 – redacted – private session
13 [Open session]
14 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Did he tell you those things personally, personally to you
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And how did he do it? By telephone? In a letter? Leaving a
20 A. Face to face.
21 Q. Excuse me, Witness, perhaps we're talking at cross-purposes. A
22 while ago you said that Baja at times left on his own business and did not
23 report to you. So when he told you about this, it couldn't be face to
24 face for you, because you're on the line and he goes somewhere. So my
25 question is: How did he do that?
1 A. Well, we didn't spend six months on the line day in, day out. We
2 did have some days off when we were not on the front line, when we did
3 nothing, when we were merely on the alert.
4 Q. Did you personally ever visit the headquarters of the defence of
5 the city of Mostar in Mostar?
6 A. I don't remember.
7 Q. Now I'd like to ask Your Honours, with your leave, that the
8 witness be shown Prosecution's Exhibit P521.
9 Will you please be so kind and look at the first page first.
10 Witness ...
11 A. You want me to read the first page?
12 Q. No, no. First we'll look at it together, and then I'll tell you
13 what to read.
14 A. But -- I apologise.
15 Q. So whilst Their Honours are looking for the document, will you
16 please tell me what do you see in the upper left corner of the first
18 A. The command of the 1st Battalion of the Mostar military police.
19 And then we have the reference number, the date. Isn't it the 15th of
20 July 1993?
21 THE INTERPRETER: Could the document please be placed on the ELMO,
22 because the interpreters were not given the document.
23 A. And then it says the central sector, and after that you have in
24 capital letters "report."
25 Q. Will you now turn to page 2.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Could the document please be placed on the ELMO,
2 because the interpreters were not given a copy of this document.
3 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
4 Q. And last passage --
5 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Krsnik, the interpreters say that they did not
6 have the document. Could it be put on the ELMO so that to help the
8 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, it can be done. Yes, we
9 can do that.
10 JUDGE LIU: At least the English version of that document.
11 THE REGISTRAR: What page?
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Page 2, last passage.
13 Q. Have you found it, Witness? Let me just see if it -- no, no,
14 no. One passage below this one. The passage below this one. The
15 paragraph below this one. The next paragraph. The next passage.
16 That's fine. That's fine.
17 So do you see, Witness, what it says here? So Aleksic's house -
18 Zahum front line. So this is the front line from the intersection by the
19 health centre to the church, that is, Zahum. Is that right? And then it
20 says nicely here:
21 "Members of the 4th Battalion of the third HVO brigade are holding
22 the position. And then the enemy continued their customary provocations
23 with sniper fire and so on and so forth." And then the report for that
24 particular day. And that was - let me repeat it once again - it was the
25 15th of July, 1993.
1 Do you recall that day, the 15th of July? Were you there?
2 A. I'd rather not be asked about the dates. You're saying 15th of
3 July? Can I say something? If you want me to talk about the 15th of
4 July --
5 Q. Well, this -- this is a report on the 15th of July.
6 A. On the 15th of July, I was not on the front line, because it was
7 then that I was wounded.
8 Q. Right. Now, look at the last sentence in this report. One of our
9 soldiers was likely wounded in the leg. That was you, wasn't it?
10 A. No. I was wounded next to Livo's house.
11 Q. Very well. And you see this is a collective report. You can have
12 a look at it. So we have the "glass bank," the old secondary school house
13 line, Aleksica house front line, Zahum. See, somebody was
14 writing a joint report about the developments, which means that somebody
15 coordinated the front line as a whole, issued orders, and received
16 reports. Would you agree with that?
17 A. Well, I suppose it is highly likely. Whether that is so or not, I
18 wouldn't go into it. These are the documents that I was handed over by
19 the Prosecution.
20 Q. And is it true that the 4th Battalion was an integral part of the
21 3rd HVO Brigade? Are you aware of that?
22 A. I am.
23 Q. Are you aware that every brigade had its own ATGs?
24 A. No. And I wouldn't agree with that statement.
25 Q. You can agree with me and you don't have to agree with me. My
1 question was whether you are -- you were aware that brigades as large
2 units incorporated ATGs or special purpose units, or whatever they were
3 called, but that every brigade had units of that kind.
4 A. Yes. I'm aware of special purpose units, but I'm not aware that
5 ATG units -- that ATGs were parts of brigades.
6 Q. But can you tell apart ATG units and special purpose units? Isn't
7 it one and the same with only names that are different?
8 A. Well, you see, the 4th Battalion had also a special purpose unit.
9 Later on, there was also an anti-terrorist group.
10 Q. Do you remember what your army card said when, according to your
11 testimony, you were a member of the 4th Battalion?
12 A. I do not.
13 Q. I have this document, and I hope you will believe me. And it says
14 "the soldier JPN." Does not -- that JPN, is not that the acronym for the
15 special purpose unit?
16 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Poriouvaev.
17 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Well, show the document. He's talking about
18 some document without showing it to the witness and to the Trial Chamber.
19 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
20 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] My apologies, Your Honour. Yes, I
21 have to think about everything, then I forget something. This is part --
22 this is one of the documents that I received yesterday and why we -- why
23 this cross-examination moves -- moved to today. And this copy fortunately
24 is quite clear. Some other copies -- and I will later on ask my learned
25 friends to help me, both with originals and English translations, because
1 I think that these documents are highly relevant and of great importance.
2 I have one copy because I was given only one copy, and I had no time to --
3 I mean, but the Chamber received these documents from the Prosecutor
4 yesterday. These documents were attached to this statement that this
5 witness gave to the OTP.
6 So usher, can you please show this document to the witness ask
7 then give it back to me, because this is the only copy that I have.
8 Q. Have you seen it, your army card?
9 A. Yes, I have.
10 Q. Is it your card?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Is that you in the photograph?
13 A. Yes, I am.
14 Q. Does this JP -- does this acronym mean that you were a soldier and
15 that the JPN means "special purpose unit"?
16 A. Yes, that's right.
17 Q. So as early as 1992, you were already a member of the special
18 purpose unit.
19 A. Yes, I was.
20 Q. And it was a part of the 4th Battalion, wasn't it?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. At that time, the gentleman who is mentioned today, Mario
23 Milicivic, that 1992 was also foot soldier like you, wasn't he, and he was
24 also a member of the special purpose unit, wasn't he?
25 A. Yes. But it was towards the end, perhaps towards the end of
2 Q. And your Commander was Mr. Vinko Martinovic, called Vina; right?
3 A. Well, yes, we had a number of commanders. One of them was Vinko
4 Martinovic, Vina.
5 Q. And another Commander was a man whose nickname was Benito, wasn't
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Tell me, this gentleman whose nickname is Benito, would you know
9 his full name?
10 A. No, I'm sorry, I don't.
11 Q. Isn't he a Muslim?
12 A. I don't know.
13 Q. And is it that same Benito about whom you said that he mined the
14 Balinovac and destroyed it? Is that the same Benito?
15 A. Yes, it is.
16 Q. And now in 1993 from the special purpose unit, as a matter of fact
17 you remained a special purpose unit except that now you are called the
18 anti-terrorist group, because it's the same men, Baja Milicivic, Benito,
19 and all those men whom you mentioned yesterday and who are in the
20 transcript. I don't have to repeat them. It's all those same men, isn't
22 A. Will you please repeat the question.
23 Q. I'm saying that this special purpose unit that we've just been
24 talking about. So you, Baja Milicivic, Benito, all members of this
25 special purpose unit, except that it is now called the anti-terrorist
2 A. Yes, but under a different commander.
3 Q. Let me just clarify something that is not quite clear in the
4 transcript. Since you speak English, it will be easier for you. It says
5 under a different commander. One commander or a different command? What
6 did you mean?
7 A. I don't understand the question.
8 Q. A while ago you were answering me question, and you said, "Yes,
9 but under a different command." Was that your answer?
10 A. Yes, it was.
11 Q. And you know that you were under a different command because that
12 is what Baja Milicivic had told you.
13 A. That's right.
14 Q. And that is all that you know about it. All that you know comes
15 from Baja Milicivic; is that right?
16 A. Yes, from Baja Milicivic.
17 Q. Witness, yesterday you showed your certificate during the
18 testimony for the Prosecution. Why are you on the record? Why are you
19 listed here as a member of the 1st Light Assault Brigade of the military
21 A. I'm not aware of that fact.
22 Q. Witness, yesterday my learned friend showed you this certificate.
23 I can give it to you today again.
24 A. Will you then, please. I'd like to see every document.
25 Q. Yes, of course.
1 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Usher, can you please help me. Just
2 don't put it on the ELMO, please.
3 Q. And don't read out your name, please, of course.
4 And so you see the last sentence in this certificate reads:
5 "Whenever something is not clear, contact the unit, Benko Penavic ATG,
6 and the military police, the 1st Light Assault, which has this soldier on
7 its payroll, in its record."
8 And this is P621.1. So you were recorded as a member of the 1st
9 Light Assault. You were on their list.
10 A. No. I was listed with the Benko Penavic ATG and the 1st Light
11 Assault. And it says clearly here where this soldier is registered, so in
12 case if necessary this soldier could be contacted either through Benko
13 Penavic or through the military police.
14 Q. It transpires, then, that you were a member of two different
16 A. Well, if I was in the records of the military police or the ATG
17 Benko Penavic, it does not mean that I am a member of two different
19 Q. Well, you are the one who can answer that. I asked you?
20 A. Well, I've just answered. It does not mean that -- how did they
21 keep their records and whether they kept it well. Was I to be concerned
22 about it? What I had to worry about was how to get out of it all alive.
23 Q. Wait, now. Witness you volunteered. Your father signed your
24 assent. But you wanted to join HVO units. And since you were underage,
25 even your father had to sign the consent form on your behalf. Is that
2 A. Yes, it is.
3 Q. Well then, since you voluntarily joined these unit, you must have
4 been aware that you could also lose your life in a war. Isn't it?
5 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
6 MR. PORIOUVAEV: I must object. It's a speculation. My learned
7 colleague told -- just told that he joined some units. The witness say
8 that is he was a member of one unit. He has never told that he was a
9 member of some units.
10 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, you have to rephrase your question
11 to be more specific.
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, when I say that he
13 joined, I believe that we're all following this trial. We have not
14 forgotten it overnight. And especially since I cross-examined him today.
15 He was a member of several units. In 1992 he joined a unit which still
16 did not have its name. I remember his testimony. And only later on it
17 became the 4th Battalion. Today we learned that within the 4th Battalion,
18 he was a member of the Special Purpose Unit. And after that, that there
19 was the ATG. And I think that these are different units. So I think my
20 questions are quite proper. It is no speculation. These are all hard
22 But I can rephrase my question. Of course.
23 JUDGE LIU: Ask your question in the proper sequence so that the
24 witness understands where you are aiming at.
25 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] For that, I don't know when you have
1 decided to take a break. I don't know if it is now. If this is the
2 moment, when we can continue after the break.
3 JUDGE LIU: Well, we'll proceed until 10.15, or quarter past
5 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Witness, in 1992, was there any organisation of the defence, or
7 did you self-organise in the defence against the Serb aggression. Is that
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Is it correct that people bought their own weapons or they
11 received it from either the SDA or the HDZ parties?
12 A. Yes, that is correct.
13 Q. Did you organise yourselves by neighbourhoods, by street, and did
14 you sort of find among yourselves your leaders by seniority or some other
15 principle, and only later in late 1992 or 1993 the organisation became
16 more serious, to say?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Let me ask you this way: When was the HVO established?
19 A. Excuse me. You are confronting me with some dates that I cannot
20 answer to.
21 Q. Fine. When did you start organising yourselves as more or less an
22 army out of these self-organised units?
23 A. We were organised as military organisations from the beginning.
24 Q. But a moment ago you said about -- something about the
25 organisation itself. That it's self-organisation.
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Perhaps I am going too fast. I'm now waiting -- looking at the
3 monitor. It has -- I'm waiting for the transcript to stop. So I
4 apologise. But on the other hand, we can concentrate better, we can give
5 better questions and answers to each other.
6 But let's move on. This HVO was formed and then within this HVO,
7 this 4th Battalion was established. I'm now talking in general terms. Is
8 that correct?
9 A. Yes, that is correct, sir.
10 Q. So this is now your neighbourhood, your street, and that is part
11 of the 4th Battalion area.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And you joined this 4th Battalion when you became a soldier and
14 when you joined.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. You had a weapon from before, and you were together with the
17 Croats in this unit.
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Tell me, when you were in that 4th Battalion - and now we're
20 moving to early 1993 - were ever -- were you ever approached by the ABiH
21 members, and did they say that you should stay with the HVO units because
22 they needed you there for as long as possible?
23 A. Yes, that is correct.
24 Q. Do you know that this is what they were saying to every -- to all
25 other Muslims who were in the HVO?
1 A. That, I don't know.
2 Q. You see, now the exchange is flowing very well.
3 So they told you to stay in those units until you are needed by
4 the ABiH, and after that you would receive new assignments. Was that how
5 it was approximately?
6 A. Can you please repeat the question?
7 Q. We'll take it slowly. Let's limit ourselves to you personally.
8 The 4th Battalion, how many were you? How many Muslims were there in the
9 4th Battalion approximately?
10 A. I don't remember that.
11 Q. Were you few? Were you more than few? Were you a lot?
12 A. We were few.
13 Q. And then at some point, other Muslims who are members of the ABiH
14 come to you, and what do they say? You tell me.
15 A. Their representatives of the ABiH came, and they said that there
16 were rumours about a conflict between the Muslims and the Croats but that
17 we -- those of us who were Muslims and who were with the HVO should stay
18 where we are because we were needed there, because there will be no
19 conflict between the HVO and the ABiH.
20 Q. When were you visited for the last time, if you recall, of
22 A. I remember that they visited us -- they had visited us once, but I
23 don't know when.
24 Q. Tell me, did the ABiH arrest any HVO soldiers? For instance, did
25 they ever arrest any of your fellow soldiers from the 4th Battalion?
1 A. Yes, once at the front line when a conflict broke out between the
2 Muslims and Croats.
3 Q. Was that not sometime before the conflict, that is, sometime in
4 March or April?
5 A. Well, I don't know.
6 Q. You recently gave your statement to the OTP, and you said that it
7 was before the 8th of May. You said that a whole platoon was arrested
8 when they were going to the front lines.
9 A. Yes. That was at the very start of the war between the Muslims
10 and the Croats.
11 Q. I didn't know that there was a war at that time.
12 A. When?
13 Q. Before the 8th of May. I don't know. And after the 8th of May, I
14 also don't know whether that was a war. It is something that history is
15 going to decide and this Trial Chamber. So was it before the 8th of May?
16 A. I am not aware of their being arrested -- having been arrested.
17 MR. KRSNIK:. I'm sorry. I'm just looking -- I'm trying to find
18 out that place in the statement. In order not to waste time, even though
19 I did mark things, maybe I'll take it up during the break. No, I found it
20 now. I'm sorry. Yes. Yes. My apologies. I will give it to the
22 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Poriouvaev.
23 MR. PORIOUVAEV: [Previous translation continues] ... witness
24 statement before him.
25 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
1 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I -- my apologies. I thank you for
2 reminding me so promptly, my learned friend.
3 Q. "You see, until the 8th of May, 1993, I was doing nothing else but
4 going from time to time to the front lines against the Serbs. The last
5 time I was up there was on either the 2nd or 3rd of May. The platoon that
6 had replaced mine was arrested by the Muslim Armjia at the front line. It
7 is absolutely clear that they were arrested at the front line facing the
8 Serbs, and it was quite clear that it was before the 8th of May."
9 These are your words. Did you state that?
10 A. I did not. I did not say it was before the 8th of May, because
11 you went from 7 to 14 days. So if you -- if you look at the 2nd or 3rd,
12 it would be going to 9th or past 9th.
13 Q. On the 11 October 2001, that is, two months ago, you signed this
14 statement and adopted it as your own.
15 A. That is correct.
16 Q. But you did not say that.
17 A. I did say it, but not in the words which you used to explain it,
18 sir. You're looking for proof that the army had arrested these men before
19 the 8th. I did not write that. I said that we were replaced, that we had
20 rotated on the 2nd or the 3rd. I did not say when the arrests took
22 Q. I'm not trying to polemicise with you, Witness. That is not my
23 intention. I simply read what is written here and whether you had stated
25 A. But after my statement you had an explanation. You concluded that
1 the army had arrested the people before the 8th of May. And that is what
2 I don't agree with.
3 JUDGE LIU: Well, could the usher bring the witness out first,
4 after pulling down the blinds.
5 Mr. Krsnik, would you please furnish us, the judges, with the
6 English version of that statement during the break. Thank you very much.
7 MR. KRSNIK: I can do it immediately. I have it.
8 JUDGE LIU: Well, we'll have 30 minutes break, then we'll resume
9 at quarter to 11.00.
10 --- Recess taken at 10.15 a.m.
11 --- On resuming at 10.51 a.m.
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if I may --
13 JUDGE LIU: [Microphone not activated] Mr. Usher, please wait.
14 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] My client is feeling worse. He's
15 feeling worse than before. He's taken this nitroglycerin for three times
16 now, and he would like to be excused. Of course I'm going to go on
17 without his presence.
18 JUDGE LIU: Yes, he could be excused.
19 [The accused withdrew]
20 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
21 Yes, Mr. Krsnik. Please continue.
22 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Witness, let us finish off the -- this line of questioning that we
24 had started before the break. Let me put it simply. Do you know whether
25 this platoon of the 4th Battalion was arrested before the 8th of May or
1 not? If you know.
2 A. No.
3 Q. Let us move on. Witness, I'm going to ask the usher -- I'm going
4 to show you a picture. We'll go back to the Bulevar to try to clear up
5 some additional things. I'm going to ask Madam Registrar for that
7 Witness, will you please take the pointer. Witness, this exhibit,
8 14.5, was shown to you yesterday, if I am not mistaken. We mentioned
9 these Aleksica houses here. I was referring to these demolished buildings
10 across from the health centre. Now, was that your position? Or please
11 just show me your position, where it was.
12 A. It was this area here.
13 Q. So for the benefit of the Trial Chamber, what I was referring to
14 as Aleksica Kuca is exactly the area that you just showed.
15 JUDGE CLARK: Mr. Krsnik, sorry, there's only one house that he
16 showed, and you referred to "houses." Could you have it clarified,
18 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Of course, Your Honour. And in fact,
19 I was just about to do that.
20 Q. Witness, again, using your pointer first, will you show -- can we
21 pull back the image so that we see as much of it as possible.
22 Excellent. Perfect. Maybe we went a little bit too wide.
23 All these houses that have been demolished, was that your
25 A. Not all the demolished houses.
1 Q. Will you then, please, point to which one.
2 A. I doubt that I can show you exactly, because it is overgrown now,
3 so you cannot see everything.
4 Q. No, no. I'm not referring to the area that was controlled by the
5 ABiH but the one that was under your control. So you were holding the
6 position of only this one house?
7 A. There were several houses there. There was a house behind this
8 one. There was a house here. There was a house behind there. There was
9 a wall there. Another house was the Aleksica house. If you want, I can
10 draw it for you.
11 Q. Thank you for your assistance. I am trying to make it as clear as
12 possible for the Trial Chamber. So for the record, there were other
13 houses here which have now disappeared. They were what, destroyed or
15 A. The -- they're now overgrown.
16 Q. Now, if you can draw a straight line. Don't circle it, but just a
17 straight line of what was your sector of the front line of the ATG Benko
19 A. You think that I can draw a -- exactly?
20 Q. I don't know.
21 A. I'll try it, but it may not be perfect or straight.
22 Q. Very well. Do the best you can.
23 A. [Marks]
24 Q. This is a green marker, unfortunately, but I hope we can all see
1 Tell me, this is Liska Street, northward direction.
2 A. Yes, towards Ronda.
3 Q. I see. These first houses that are so badly damaged, who held
4 those? Whose line was that?
5 A. I can't see which line you're pointing at.
6 Q. I'm not sure I am really showing the exact position because it's
7 not easy for me to see this green marker.
8 JUDGE CLARK: Mr. Krsnik, do you think it would help if you got a
9 chance to look at the actual mark and then the Trial Chamber got a chance
10 to look, because you see, there's a shadow on the picture and we can't
11 tell whether the green mark is there or not. And this is quite crucial.
12 So maybe if you have a look at it, the rest of the team has a look at it,
13 and then when you finish, if you hand it up to us -- and also your client,
14 of course.
15 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'd also like to ask
16 the witness to draw a line, if possible, to somehow close this area in the
17 westward direction, and then we shall see it. Because now we see there
18 are only two lines. But you didn't draw a line on the west side. So on
19 the upper side towards Rondo, towards Rondo, how far up did your line go?
20 And then, Your Honour, we shall get a square more or less or a rhomboid.
21 THE REGISTRAR: If I could make a suggestion and perhaps the
22 witness could use a black marker and make his drawings, then it will be
23 visible. Okay. Great.
24 A. [Marks]
25 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Well, now we can see it. Now we can
1 see it well, I hope. Your Honour, can you see it now clearly? Thank you
2 very much.
3 Q. My next question, Witness, is: So between this new building, this
4 white building, to your line, to the upper line, who held that particular
6 A. Which white building, excuse me? Could you point at it to
7 me, because I'd like to avoid any confusion.
8 Q. Yes, of course, Witness. So this white building, this first white
9 renovated building across the health centre towards Rondo, this big white
10 building with the red roof, left -- to the left of the health centre. So
11 we have a row of demolished houses, and then this building which was
13 Now, my question is: Between that building and the line that you
14 drew, who held that area?
15 A. Nobody did. That is, that area served only for us to get to the
16 line. That is the way we took to the line.
17 Q. Very well. Now will you please tell me -- yes, it's also
18 difficult for me to say where is west, where is east. So we're looking
19 from down Bulevar towards Carinski Bridge; is that right? And from that
20 line, who manned that?
21 A. It was the 4th Battalion.
22 Q. So we can say that from the intersection up to the church, it
23 was only you and the 4th Battalion, is it?
24 A. That's right.
25 Q. And here, in this square, you yourself decided what you would do,
1 or was the whole line under the same command?
2 A. No. In that particular part, we took our own decisions.
3 Q. That is, you could launch an attack whenever you liked?
4 A. Oh, come, counsel. It was all organised. Who ever saw anyone
5 launch an attack by himself, on his own, come on.
6 Q. Well, thank you for this answer. That is what I'm trying to get
7 from you slowly and gradually. This answer, of course it's a logical
8 answer because across from you along the whole line is the ABiH army,
9 isn't it?
10 A. That's right.
11 Q. Right. Let's keep this picture here.
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] And I will now have to ask the
13 registrar to give the usher P590. It is another Prosecution exhibit, and
14 I was given this document by the gentleman from the OTP.
15 It can be placed on the ELMO, because I think that no names are
16 mentioned here.
17 Can we have the first page on the ELMO, of the English version.
18 Very good.
19 Q. Witness, will you please listen to what I'm saying. I will only
20 read the title, that is, "The Croatian community of Herceg-Bosna, Croatian
21 Defence Council, south-eastern Herzegovina operative zone, Mostar"; is
22 that right?
23 A. It is.
24 Q. And then, pursuant to the order of the main staff -- the GS means
25 the main staff. Then we get the reference number then the year. [As
1 read] For the better function of command and of control systems in
2 forthcoming offensive -- defensive operations, and with the aim of or in
3 order to prevent the break through the defence line towards the MOS,
4 meaning Muslim defence forces, and the VRS, which is the army of Republika
5 Srpska, in the area of responsibility. Clear the Drezanka River valley
6 and take control of Dreznica through offensive and sabotage operations;
7 cleanse Mostar of MOS forces (the right bank), and in further offensive
8 operations, take control of Mostar and Bijelo Polje and take control of
9 the Bijela/Ravni/Salakovac sector. You know where Salakovac is.
10 Salakovac is a dam on the Neretva on at Rastani. And now we have in
11 capital letters I order. And then it says that, South-east Herzegovina's
12 operative zone is hereby divided into three sectors, sector north, sector
13 Mostar Defence, and sector south. Were you aware of this division in the
14 command chain?
15 A. I didn't -- excuse me. No, I did not.
16 Q. Now, what we are interested in is the sector of Mostar Defence.
17 It is 1.2. And it says here -- I believe that is page 2 in English. And
18 then it says: "Mostar Defence sector comprises the two HVO brigades; that
19 is, there were two brigades in Mostar." Are you aware of that?
20 A. I am.
21 Q. [As Read] The current complement of the Mostar Defence, with one
22 third of the brigade, and then in brackets it says VP, the military
23 police, forces of the Mostar police administration, Mrmak ATG, Benko
24 Penavic ATG, and the Home Guard Regiment so organise and prepare offensive
25 and defensive operations in the zone left, and then it -- the text goes on
1 to indicate points of references, such as Macija Glava TT714, excluding
2 Gornje Vojno, Dobro Dublje, TT1112, and to the right, not including how
3 many, in depth, the village of Polog. The sector commander is Mr. Mijo
4 Jelic, command post, Mostar.
5 Now, first question is: Are you familiar with this?
6 A. Yes, it is. Yes, it is.
7 Q. Now, all the brigades mentioned in this document would be under
8 the commander of the Mostar Defence and his commander.
9 Will you now turn to the end of the document. And his commander
10 would be the commander of the operative zone of south-east Herzegovina.
11 And as it says here "Brigadier, Milenko Lasic". Are you familiar with
13 A. I'm not.
14 Q. And you see this order is then delivered. This is left of the
15 signature. It is sent to -- that is, all those to whom copies are sent
16 are listed here. You will not find anywhere here either the military
17 police or the home guard regiment, nor Mrmak ATG, nor Benko Penavic ATG.
18 It is delivered to the Commander of the Mostar Defence sector. And the
19 Commander of the Mostar Defence sent on the order received from the Main
20 Staff to these addresses here. Are you aware of that?
21 A. No, sir. You are talking about things that a foot soldier had no
22 way of knowing.
23 Q. That's a fair answer. That's why I asked you this question. And
24 you answered it.
25 JUDGE LIU: And Mr. Krsnik, what's the time frame of that period?
1 I understand this order was issued, at least according to this document,
2 on the 4th of September, 1993. Is that relevant to the testimony of this
4 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] It is, because under 1.2 of this
5 order, we read about the complement prior to that date. That is, it says
6 "Mostar Defence sector comprises two brigades, the current complement,
7 that is, it was prior to the 3rd of September, and that is why I thought
8 it relevant. Moreover, the witness testified about a relatively long
9 period of time, from May until about October when he left. Isn't it,
10 Witness? Yes, more or less.
11 Q. And you will agree with me, Witness, you didn't mention too many
12 days nor do we know when happened what, according to you. That is, you
13 know about events but you do not know exactly when they took place.
14 A. That's right.
15 Q. But now let us go back to the photograph.
16 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] And could we go into private session,
18 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the private session, please.
19 [Private session]
13 Page 8006 – redacted – private session
13 Page 8007 – redacted – private session
13 Page 8008 – redacted – private session
15 [Open session]
16 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Now I'd like to ask the registrar
17 merely to present as clear a picture as possible to Their Honours, 14.3,
18 to give us Exhibit 14.3.
19 JUDGE CLARK: Can I ask you Mr. Krsnik - and forgive me for
20 interrupting so often - is the point of your cross-examination to
21 establish that this witness was not in the ATG Benko Penavic? What are
22 you actually trying to establish? It's not clear to me why it's so
23 important to say that somebody says that the area of responsibility for
24 the 4th Battalion is in this corner, and you're saying he says the other.
25 What is the aim of this cross-examination?
1 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I should be very happy to do so, Your
2 Honour. And thank you very much for you question. The Defence holds that
3 this was all the 4th Battalion because we already have the testimony about
4 this, and that thought this anti-terrorist group or the elite unit or the
5 anti-terror group, or what other names were used to designate those
6 groups, that they were all part of the brigade, rather, a battalion, in
7 the area of responsibility which was called Mostar Defence in
8 south-eastern Herzegovina. I believe this is very clear.
9 JUDGE CLARK: [Previous translation continues] ... your position
10 is that the ATG Benko Penavic was part of the 4th Battalion, part and
11 parcel. So the commander of the 4th Battalion would be this witness's
12 commander. Am I correct?
13 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] That is right. That is part of the
14 second brigade. That is part of the defence of the city of Mostar.
15 JUDGE CLARK: Let's not go that far. Just in this particular
16 situation, you are saying that Benko Penavic was part and parcel of the
17 4th Battalion and not an independent unit?
18 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Approximately something like that.
19 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President.
20 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Scott.
21 MR. SCOTT: I'm not sure this is it, but perhaps we could look at
22 D2/6. There may have been a version of that same photograph 14.5 that was
23 then marked as a Defence exhibit. It might be D2/6 possibly.
24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
25 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
1 Q. We'll wait a little bit, because we're almost done, and then I'll
2 ask you to show me on this photograph, the one that you're about to be
3 given, again to mark where the 4th Battalion and where the ATG were.
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone to the witness. Can the microphones
5 please be turned on for the witness. Thank you.
6 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Will you please repeat what you just said.
8 A. We'll just skip it.
9 Q. The colleagues told me that you are not a painter. So if you --
10 A. If you heard it, why are you asking me to repeat it? Please be
12 Q. I had asked you for the transcript, because it was not entered in
13 the transcript.
14 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I have in front of me a photograph,
15 and my colleagues have just reminded me that they were leading this
16 evidence, and the house in the photograph marked 14.5 was marked, but we
17 are in open session, but I can hand it over to the usher to put it on the
19 JUDGE CLARK: That's not really what you said, Mr. Krsnik, is it?
20 It's long distance from what you said. [redacted]
23 So the other witness had said that he -- the other witness had
24 allegedly marked a map showing the identical area as being the 4th
25 Battalion area. Now that photograph doesn't show that at all. It shows a
1 house with a circle around it marked number "3," which is outside of the
2 area, at the very back of the area.
3 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Scott.
4 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, and I apologise. It's Mr. Poriouvaev's
5 witness, of course, but I'm trying to assist on this particular item with
6 the Chamber's permission. I think you can find some discussion of this at
7 25 -- for those of you who have the laptop at page 2597/98, of transcript
8 where indeed Mr. Seric was cross-examining that witness concerning these
9 matters and 14.5 was remarked as a Defence Exhibit D2/6. So that page
10 number may assist. Thank you, Mr. President.
11 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, there are several
13 numbers and several markings here.
14 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Meek.
15 MR. MEEK: Mr. Scott, we can't tell what page it is, Your
16 Honours. My only question is maybe Mr. Scott could tell me what date. I
17 can't -- I have a laptop here, but I have --
18 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Mr. President. It's on the 19th of September.
19 The reference actually to marking the doctor's house is on 25 -- page
20 2596, approximately line 20. Witness S "Witness S can you point on this
21 photograph at the house of Dr. Aleksic." And it's on 2596 and continuing
22 thereafter on the 19th of September, I believe. Thank you.
23 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, you may proceed. We could look at
24 it during the break.
25 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
1 Q. And now finally I'm going to ask you, Witness, to draw another
2 line from the intersection that would be, I guess, due south, towards the
3 customs bridge, the Carinski Bridge, where the 4th Battalion was deployed
4 according to you, so that we see that. I'm going to ask the -- the Madam
5 Registrar for 14.3.
6 A. Sir, you had already asked me numbers 1 and 2. I put -- oh, I
7 see. This is a different picture.
8 Q. That is why I was asking.
9 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] So Madam Registrar, if it's not a
10 problem. [In English] 14.3.
11 Q. [Interpretation] Witness, I'm going to ask you to place that --
12 no, Mr. Usher is going to handle it. While we are waiting, perhaps you
13 can take the pointer in the other photographs -- the other photograph, you
14 had put number "2" there. So I'll first ask you to use your pointer and
15 show where your area was.
16 A. My apologies. I am not sure that I'll be able to show very
17 accurately where it was because it's -- it's not a detailed picture, and
18 we could easily be mistaken.
19 Q. That's not the purpose. Do you recognise the intersection from
20 the other photograph? So let me just ask you, then, to show with the
21 pointer where you were and just extend the line to where you think the 4th
22 Battalion was.
23 A. [Indicates]
24 Q. Okay. This is where you were.
25 A. [Indicates] From where we were, all way down to whom was the 4th
2 Q. Okay. We'll all note it for the record. According to you, the
3 4th Battalion continued directly from your line to that hill which, as we
4 know, is called Hum.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Let me just ask you -- I don't know what your purpose is. You
7 were talking about the 4th Battalion?
8 A. I was a member of the Benko Penavic ATG.
9 Q. Fine.
10 A. Will you please hear me out.
11 Q. I am asking the questions.
12 A. I will not get upset. You will see in the certificate that Mario
13 Milicivic signed that I was a member of the ATG from such and such a date
14 to such and such a date. And it -- and so I don't know why you are
15 pressing me with the questions regarding the 4th Battalion.
16 Q. I really do not want to press you. I know that it's not easy to
17 give evidence for as long as you have been giving it. I am doing my job,
18 and I'm trying to clear up certain things. And this certificate, it says
19 that you are a member of the Light Assault Unit of the military police.
20 A. That is what you see.
21 JUDGE CLARK: [Previous translation continues] ... the transcript,
22 in case another Court is reading that transcript. I cannot let that pass
23 a second time. Unless the interpretation in English is totally different
24 from what it is in Serbo-Croat, what it says is that this witness is a
25 member of the Benko Penavic Convicts Battalion and that any inquiry in
1 relation to him is to be addressed either to the ATG unit or to the
2 military police. It doesn't say that he's a soldier with the military
3 police. It just says where this soldier is officially registered. It
4 doesn't mean he's a member of the police. That's the interpretation that
5 I take from it, and I think that the -- the record should be clarified,
6 just in case this evidence is considered by another Court.
7 I think I might have interrupted Mr. Poriouvaev.
8 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Thank you very much. You did my job.
9 JUDGE CLARK: I didn't mean to do that. I was trying to do our
11 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think I owe you an
12 answer. One of the major problems in this trial is the language and
13 meanings which are -- which is very hard to do, even to our very good
14 interpreters. If it is -- if something is registered -- if somebody is
15 registered with a college, let's say, does that mean that the person is
16 actually going to that college? He can be registered somewhere, but it
17 doesn't mean that he is actually going to classes. So this is the meaning
18 of the -- of being registered in the Croatian language.
19 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Poriouvaev.
20 MR. PORIOUVAEV: I must object. What is the aim of your statement
22 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, you have to prove that this person
23 is in a certain unit. Actually, we are open -- we have an open mind to
24 all those questions and answers. If you could prove your case, we'll take
1 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this cross-examination
2 has already been watered down with various interjections. But we were
3 talking about the spirit of the language. And I tried to explain what in
4 the spirit of the Croatian language the registration means. So he was
5 registered. He was registered with the Light Assault Military Police
6 Brigade. And now our excellent interpreters are here to tell us how this
7 should be fully interpreted, and it is impossible to do here.
8 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Prosecutor.
9 MR. PORIOUVAEV: I must object again. I'm not sure that
10 Mr. Krsnik is a great expert in the Croatian language, even though he's a
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Of course I am not, Your Honours, but
13 I have been speaking it for 45 years, and I know what it means if you say
14 "you're registered." You need not be a great expert in any language,
15 Croatian, Russian, English, or any other.
16 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, as I said to you just now, if you
17 have a case, you have the responsibility to prove it. We are not debating
18 on the language issues at this moment. I believe there are some language
19 experts in this Tribunal. Later on, they will verify the exact meaning of
20 the "registration."
21 You may proceed, Mr. Krsnik.
22 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just one comment. I'm
23 not asserting anything. This certificate is asserting it, and the rest is
24 really a matter of the language, into which I don't want to go. But if we
25 need to have an expert on that too, I'm prepared to bring him. But I
1 don't know how many witnesses I'll end up with. However, I'm going to
2 move on. And I thank you for all your comments.
3 Are we in the private session? I'm sorry, I am not sure.
4 JUDGE LIU: No. We're in the open session.
5 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I would like to ask for the private
6 session for a moment again, please.
7 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the private session, please.
8 [Private session]
13 Page 8018 – redacted - private session
13 Page 8019 – redacted – private session
13 Page 8020 – redacted – private session
6 [Open session]
7 JUDGE LIU: We'll resume at 12.30.
8 --- Recess taken at 12.00 p.m.
9 --- On resuming at 12.32 p.m.
10 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, with your leave.
11 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, during the break, I
13 talked with my colleagues. I wanted to be as effective as possible. And
14 my colleagues told me that perhaps my answer to Judge Clark's question was
15 misinterpreted. The question was: What was my opinion regarding the
16 Benko Penavic ATG and the 4th Battalion, isn't it? And I should like to
17 clarify whether the position of the Defence is that the ATG was within the
18 4th Battalion. The Defence's position is that on that line, between the
19 intersection and the church, the ATG and the 4th Battalion were together
20 at that time, but otherwise that they were both under the Mostar Defence
21 command. So that is my precise answer to that question regarding the
22 Defence's position. Whether they were under the direct command of the 4th
23 Battalion or not, that, I cannot know. But what is important for me is
24 that all the units on that Bulevar were under the command of the city
1 JUDGE CLARK: So you are changing your position, Mr. Krsnik. You
2 said quite unequivocally to me that your position was that the ATG was not
3 an independent unit and was part of the 4th Battalion. You're resiling
4 from that position now?
5 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do not know whether
6 there is anything to resign, because my opinion is that no unit is
7 independent. There is always some command above it. But whether they
8 were an integral part of the 4th Battalion, I said roughly, because of
9 course I cannot say yes or no. But there is absolutely no doubt that they
10 were under the command of the city command. Now, what was between Benko
11 Penavic and the city command, I do not know. Whether it was through the
12 4th Battalion or whether they were directly under the command of the city
13 defence, we shall endeavour to show it when we take over -- when our case
14 begins. I simply wanted not to be misinterpreted.
15 JUDGE CLARK: I don't think I misinterpreted you, but I accept
16 that you are now saying something a little different from what you said
17 before. But we can go on with the case. I accept what you say.
18 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Krsnik, thank you very much for your explanation.
19 And what I want to say is that anyway we have to finish the testimony of
20 this witness today.
21 MR. KRSNIK: Yeah, I know.
22 JUDGE LIU: And we have been advised that we can only sit until 1.45,
23 which is a very limited time.
24 Yes, Mr. Usher, would you please bring in the witness.
25 Well, Mr. Krsnik, you promised us to furnish us with the previous
1 statement of this witness.
2 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I do not intend -- or
3 rather, I never intended to ask any questions based on this previous
4 statement. I photocopied only this one passage. And here it is. I'm
5 sorry, Your Honours.
6 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. You may proceed, Mr. Krsnik.
7 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] If the ELMO can be brought down,
9 Q. Witness, I'm sure that you must be tired already, so let's try and
10 focus and bring this examination gradually to its end. I'll try to make
11 my questions as brief as possible, and will you please try to answer as
12 briefly as possible, always about what you know.
13 We were talking about the Oasis restaurant. Do you know how many
14 storeys, how many floors this building has?
15 A. One.
16 Q. Or to make precise, ground floor and one storey; is that it, one
17 storey more?
18 A. Yes, that's right.
19 Q. And on the upper floor where was the billiards, the pool, and
20 downstairs was the restaurant; is that how it was?
21 A. Yes, more or less.
22 Q. Tell me, who was the first one who told you that a conflict would
23 break out at that time? I think it was the 8th of May, if I'm right,
24 when you had this conversation. Was it Mr. Sadzak or Mr. Milicivic who
25 told you that?
1 A. As far as I can remember, it was Mario Milicivic, Baja.
2 Q. Did Mr. Sadzak disarm you, perhaps?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Tell me, were you present throughout the -- were you all together
5 during that meeting, or were you perhaps on the upper floor and Sadzak and
6 Baja on the ground floor?
7 A. I can't remember.
8 Q. Could anyone frequent that restaurant?
9 A. Well, I didn't own it, so I cannot answer your question.
10 Q. I mean, you didn't have to be somebody special to be admitted into
11 that restaurant, to be given access?
12 A. Well, as I've just said, I didn't own that restaurant, so that I
13 can't answer your question.
14 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, could we go into private
15 session for a question or two.
16 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the private session, please.
17 [Private session]
13 Page 8025 – redacted – private session
13 Page 8026 – redacted – private session
16 [Open session]
17 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
18 Q. You see, in 1993, yesterday you mentioned some ethnic cleansings
19 or cleansing. Did you really call it that, that year, 1993?
20 A. Yes, I called it that, Baja called it that, and all the soldiers
21 in the ATG Benko Penavic unit called it that, and we still call it that
22 way because that is -- like you take a broom and you just sweep it. And
23 we were told to do that, and we swept them by doing what we did.
24 Q. But you were a Muslim and still you took part in that?
25 A. Yes, I did take part in that. As a Muslim, I was forced to take
1 part in that. I had no other option. My biggest -- my principal thoughts
2 at the time were how to get out of it alive, how to save the lives of my
3 parents and other members of my family, so that I was really ready to do
4 anything to save my family.
5 Q. And when did your family leave Mostar? Don't give us the names or
6 anything, just tell us when is it that they left Mostar?
7 A. I don't remember.
8 Q. Was it in June? In July? In August? In September? Well, I'm
9 sure you can remember that. I'm not asking you for the date. I'm asking
10 you for a month or an approximate time.
11 A. I'm really sorry, but I cannot give you even approximately even
12 the month.
13 Q. So nothing around it. Are your parents where you are at present?
14 A. I'd rather not answer that.
15 Q. Were they the first ones to leave?
16 A. Yes.
17 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, we have to go into private
18 session briefly. I'd really rather not risk it, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the private session, please.
20 [Private session]
13 Pages 8029 – 8035 – redacted – private session
3 [Open session]
4 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Witness, in 1992/1993, were you given to drinking or taking
7 A. No.
11 A. In what regard?
12 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] We have to go into the private
13 session again.
14 JUDGE LIU: Question, Mr. Prosecutor.
15 MR. PORIOUVAEV: The name should be redacted about his relative.
16 JUDGE LIU: Yes. We'll go back to the private session.
17 [Private session]
13 Pages 8037 – 8066 – redacted – private session
1 [Open session]
2 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
3 at 1.57 p.m., to be reconvened on Thursday,
4 the 17th day of January, 2002, at 9.30 a.m.