1 Thursday, 17 January 2002
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.33 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 [The witness entered court]
9 JUDGE LIU: Good morning, Witness.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
11 JUDGE LIU: Did you have a good rest last night?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, thank you.
13 JUDGE LIU: [Previous translation continued] ... We won't keep you
14 long today. But I have to remind you that you are still under the oath.
15 Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
16 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
17 WITNESS: WITNESS AC [Resumed]
18 [Witness answered through interpreter]
19 Cross-examined by Mr. Krsnik: [Continued]
20 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Witness.
21 A. Good morning to you.
22 Q. Witness, let us resume our work. And my first question will be
23 how many days did you hide in Mr. Milicevic's house, I mean following the
24 8th of May, 1993?
25 A. I hid there between three and five days.
1 Q. So what I wanted to know, it was not more than five days, is it?
2 A. That's right.
3 Q. And you never left the house, did you?
4 A. No, I didn't.
5 Q. So you can confirm that during those five days, your knowledge is
6 based only on hearsay; you do not have any other kind of knowledge, do you
7 from other people?
8 A. Well, no, I wouldn't say that, other people. All the information
9 that I had came from Mario Milicevic.
10 Q. Yes, right. So it is other people. Whether it's Mario or Pero or
11 somebody else, all the information that you had came from some other
13 Tell me, after that, so it was the 8th May, five days is the 12th,
14 and then you say that you joined the ATG, Benko Penavic. Is that so?
15 A. Yes, sir. But on the records, it's the 9th of May as the date.
16 Q. But you didn't on the 9th of May?
17 A. Well, I was in the house. How this came about, I don't know.
18 Q. Right. Tell us, you said that you had green uniforms, that you
19 were the only ones in the whole of the HVO. Is it true that you were the
20 only ones with green uniforms?
21 A. Yes, as far as I can recall.
22 Q. Were they green uniforms which people usually called Israelian or
23 Israelis because they had been imported from Israel?
24 A. I am not aware of that.
25 Q. But it was green shirts and green trousers, is that right?
1 A. Yes, it is.
2 Q. And you invariably wore that uniform?
3 A. No, not invariably. We had two different uniforms.
4 Q. Oh, you had two different uniforms. So which was the other
6 A. The camouflage one.
7 Q. I see.
8 And you are not aware that all of the HVO soldiers had a green
9 working uniform and a camouflage uniform as a war uniform?
10 A. No, I'm not aware of that.
11 Q. Very well.
12 Tell me, please -- I will show you a photograph.
13 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Could the registrar, please,
14 Exhibit 26.9.
15 Q. Do you have a pointer? Good. Will you please first circle the
16 headquarters of the Convicts Battalion first. Wait, just a moment, until
17 I switch on my monitor.
18 A. [Indicates]
19 Q. Now, will you please do the same with the marker and put "KB" for
20 the Convicts Battalion, Kaznjenicka Bojna.
21 A. [Marks]
22 Q. So it is this big building, and I see you didn't circle the whole
23 of it so --
24 A. Well, whether it should be a big one, whether it's big or small, I
25 wouldn't know.
1 Q. No, no, no. I mean the building that you made a circle around.
2 A. Yes, yes, yes, that's right.
3 Q. Very well. Tell me, I promised that I would be very short, and I
4 really won't have more than one or two questions for you still. But you
5 can remove this. I've got the answer, and I won't be having any more
6 questions about Siroki Brijeg.
7 Tell me, did you ever see any paper on the basis of which you
8 could get detainees, prisoners, from Heliodrom?
9 A. Yes, I did.
10 Q. And what did this paper look like, and what did it say?
11 A. I'm sorry, I cannot remember that.
12 Q. And you still claim that it was Mario Milicevic's signature,
13 rather than somebody else's -- no, let me first ask you this: Did you go
14 to get the prisoners, you personally?
15 A. Yes, I did, indeed.
16 Q. And how did you go there?
17 A. We used cars and trucks.
18 Q. And what was the procedure? You'd go to the Heliodrom, and who do
19 you report to?
20 A. Well, to the person guarding the prisoners, and we take them
22 Q. No. Let's see like this. Was there a gate at the entrance, some
23 guards there, or something?
24 A. Yes, there were.
25 Q. And who guarded that gate?
1 A. Guards, watchmen.
2 Q. I mean, was it the HVO or the military police? Nobody else?
3 A. No, I'm sorry, I can't remember.
4 Q. And so you -- you've gone to the gate and you get where?
5 A. And we get to the large buildings where the prisoners were.
6 Q. And then you went up in front of those buildings, and --
7 A. And we take those prisoners.
8 Q. No. Where do you enter?
9 A. Well, there is a man standing outside, and we say we need so many,
10 say, for instance 30, and we take over 30 prisoners.
11 Q. And who's that man standing outside?
12 A. Well, the responsible person, the person in charge, or persons, I
14 Q. And this man who stood outside, was he from the military police,
15 HVO, or something else, and did he stand there and he said, "If somebody
16 needs prisoners, let him contact me." How did you know who was the person
17 responsible, please?
18 A. Well, I'd really rather not go into all these details. I might
19 make a mistake. And I don't really remember all these small details very
21 Q. But these are very important details, so I should really like you
22 to recall them, because for the sake of the truth, you know. I'm asking
23 you again, who did you talk to?
24 A. I repeat once again, I cannot remember.
25 Q. And so you say to these men standing in front of the building, "I
1 need some men." And he says, "Fine with me. Take them." And you take
2 them, and that's it?
3 A. That's right.
4 Q. And nobody made a list or anything, or did you make a list of
5 those, or didn't you? Did you perhaps make a list, or did you just
6 collect as many men as you needed and took them away simply?
7 A. Well, it -- you could put it that way.
8 Q. Tell me, now, who was the person responsible? If you went to get
9 those prisoners, were you responsible for them?
10 A. We were -- there were always two of us, more or less. I would
11 always go there with another one. So we were -- we would both be persons
12 responsible for them.
13 Q. So the two of you should figure somewhere as the -- as persons
15 A. Yes, on the way from Heliodrom to the place of work and back.
16 Q. I see. And can you remember the months when you went to
18 A. No, I'm sorry, I can't.
19 Q. Tell me, was everybody like you, then go into the Heliodrom, find
20 a man standing in front of the building, and you tell him, "Listen, I need
21 so many. And he tells you, "Fine, get them. They're there." I mean did
22 everybody did it that way like you, or was it only you who followed this
23 particular procedure?
24 A. I'm sorry, I'd rather not talk about other people.
25 Q. I see. Now I will ask you to look at a photograph. It is Exhibit
1 20.9. Can you recognise any of these buildings as the one with
2 prisoner -- housing prisoners?
3 A. No, I'm sorry.
4 Q. Thank you. Now, I'll give you the Exhibit 20.4. And can you
5 recognise any of these buildings?
6 A. I'm sorry, I can't really reproduce that image in my head.
7 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Can I -- Exhibit 20.9
8 [as interpreted], and can I...
9 Do you have a clean Exhibit 20.8, please? Because mine is drawn
10 all over, so I'd rather not use it. Thank you very much.
11 [In English] 20.8. Thank you.
12 Q. And here, can you recognise any of these buildings containing
14 A. No, I simply cannot recall, and I'd rather not --
15 Q. That's fine, that's fine.
16 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, usher.
17 Q. Tell me, if I understood properly your testimony, in Mostar, you
18 did not see any members of the Croatian army?
19 A. I? No, I did not.
20 Q. You didn't see them at the Heliodrom, did you?
21 A. I cannot recall.
22 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Could we go into private session,
23 please, for one short question, just in case.
24 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the private session, please.
25 [Private session]
13 Page 8075 – redacted – private session
13 Page 8076 – redacted – private session
13 Page 8077 – redacted – private session
13 Page 8078 – redacted – private session
17 [Open session]
18 JUDGE LIU: Any cross-examination, Mr. Par?
19 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] The defence of Vinko Martinovic has no
20 questions for this witness. Thank you.
21 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
22 Any re-examination, Mr. Prosecutor?
23 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Yes, Your Honour. But before this, I still would
24 like to explain --
25 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me.
1 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Again, against this document. First of all, the
2 quality of the document. We have the same quality of the document, so we
3 are not to blame for a very bad copy.
4 Re-examined by Mr. Poriouvaev:
5 Q. And secondly: Witness, is it the second page of the same
7 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
8 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, that is exactly what I
9 was trying to say. On the basis of this piece of paper, all you see is a
10 police stamp at the border crossing - I think this is regulated by some
11 international rules - and nothing else. So now we are getting some other
12 suggestive questions. He's now saying, "Is this the second page of the
13 same document or the back page of the same document?" So at least the
14 Prosecutor should refrain from asking suggestive questions.
15 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, as we understand, that in all the
16 passports or border pass, on any travel document, there are several
17 pages. And when you pass a border control, somebody will stamp on that
18 document. It's not necessarily on the same page. We believe the
19 Prosecutor's question is totally [Realtime transcript read in error
20 "irrelevant"] relevant.
21 You may proceed, Mr. Prosecutor.
22 MR. PORIOUVAEV: We have two different dates, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE LIU: Well, I'm sorry. There's a mistake in the
24 transcript. I said it's totally relevant, rather than irrelevant.
1 Yes, please, Mr. Krsnik.
2 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, in addition to the
3 suggestive character of the question, these are two separate -- different
4 dates, and we don't know what this document is at all about this one. We
5 only know it's a border pass which has to be attached to another -- or has
6 to be a part of another document. And this is exactly why I
7 cross-examined the witness on this point, to get this kind of a question.
8 JUDGE LIU: But you did not specifically bring up this point in
9 your cross-examination, Mr. Krsnik. You missed that point. And the -- I
10 believe that the Prosecutor during his re-examination will make it clear
11 for us.
12 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you. If you take a
13 look, there are annexes to the witness statement. Under number "6," you
14 will see, permission for the trip Mostar/Zagreb, stating that it will have
15 to go for medical control, two pages.
16 JUDGE CLARK: [Microphone not activated]
17 MR. KRSNIK: I don't have this document. [Interpretation] I don't
18 have that document. I have nothing marked with number "6."
19 MR. PORIOUVAEV: It's has number ERN 02120136. And the next
20 one --
21 MR. KRSNIK: 36?
22 MR. PORIOUVAEV: -- 37.
23 JUDGE CLARK: We have the document, but where do we find what
24 you're reading out, that he was going for medical purposes? That's what
25 I'm talking about. We have a series of documents which --
1 MR. PORIOUVAEV: ... controller.
2 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, of course, I have to
3 object, except in addition to my learned friend giving testimony himself,
4 this is a permit of the military authorities for this person to be able to
5 leave his unit. And these documents -- and we are still not clear what
6 they are, even though I have asked more than 20 questions about it. This
7 is a document with which one crosses a national border, so we should first
8 clear this up.
9 JUDGE LIU: Let's hear the answer from this witness. We believe
10 that we have to make that clear.
11 MR. PORIOUVAEV: But I have not completed my question.
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes, you may continue.
13 MR. PORIOUVAEV: We have the document on two pages, in this way,
14 this document was given to us by the witness. And as far as I see from
15 this document, I think that we should give the -- a copy of this document
16 to the witness.
17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, my question is --
18 MR. PORIOUVAEV: This document was on two pages.
19 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Prosecutor, my question is whether you have that
20 original document in your possession.
21 MR. PORIOUVAEV: We don't have an original document. We also have
23 JUDGE LIU: Where are those original documents? Yes, Witness.
24 A. I have the originals.
25 JUDGE LIU: Would you ask the witness to furnish that document to
1 the Office of the Prosecutor.
2 MR. PORIOUVAEV: We will certify as to the copies made by the
3 investigator who was interviewing the witness, and that's why we don't
4 have the original documents, because the witness may still need them.
5 JUDGE LIU: Well, you have to ask this witness to furnish those
6 original documents to your office so that we could know whether the second
7 page is on the same document or not, because it seems to me there is some
8 debate on this very issue.
9 MR. PORIOUVAEV:
10 Q. Witness, could you furnish us with the original documents that is
11 now at issue?
12 A. Yes. I would, however, like to request to have this document
13 returned to me after it has been checked because I may still have a need
14 for it. I think that I may have these documents in my hotel. And should
15 you so decide, I can perhaps provide them later in the day.
16 JUDGE LIU: That's a very good idea. And I can guarantee you that
17 we will return that document to you after using it.
18 A. Thank you.
19 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Yes, I have got still two questions.
20 Q. Now, if you return to page 12 of yesterday's transcript, lines 1,
21 2, the response to the Defence counsel question, the Witness said -- I am
22 quoting. It dealt with the questions of logistic supplies and other
23 issues concerning the command. "Whenever Baja left the town" - it was the
24 witness response, according to the transcript - "he would tell us about
25 what was his destination or, rather, why he was going there."
1 Is it your response, Witness?
2 A. Yes. As far as I can recall, yes.
3 Q. And do you know to which places did your commander Mario Milicevic
4 used to go?
5 A. There were several places. For instance, to Croatia, or perhaps
6 to Siroki Brijeg to Tuta's, or it was to Ljubuski at Kravica, and so on.
7 Q. Thank you. And my next question will be about the solemn oath
8 taken from you on the 8th of May, 1992, while you were joining the HVO
9 unit for the first time. Were you present at this ceremony?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Do you know who signed the document on behalf of the HVO?
12 A. I don't remember.
13 Q. Okay, thank you.
14 MR. PORIOUVAEV: I have no further questions.
15 JUDGE LIU: Any questions from Judges? Yes, Judge Clark.
16 Questioned by the Court:
17 JUDGE CLARK: I have a few questions, Witness AC, and they may not
18 be in order. When you went to the Heliodrom to get prisoners - you said
19 you did this a few times - did you pick the prisoners at random?
20 Mr. Krsnik was asking you this, and I wanted to know, did you just pick
21 the prisoners at random, go in and say, "We need 25, we need 30"?
22 A. No, never at random.
23 JUDGE CLARK: So did you know when you went to the Heliodrom the
24 particular tasks that were being carried out that day and the type of man
25 that you needed?
1 A. I knew of specific tasks, but it wasn't really important what kind
2 of man it was, whether it was older or younger, stronger or less strong.
3 These people all had just one task.
4 JUDGE CLARK: And that was filling sandbags and digging trenches
5 and fortifications, was it?
6 A. Yes. Making fortifications on the front line.
7 JUDGE CLARK: Now, I know you were very young at the time, and it
8 was a while ago. If you can remember, cast your mind back to when you
9 went there, did the prisoners begin to associate you and your companion as
10 people who had come to take them as prisoners to work for Benko Penavic
12 A. I'm sorry. Can you perhaps give me a more specific question,
13 because I don't think I fully understand.
14 JUDGE CLARK: You see, we've heard from a number of witnesses that
15 as prisoners of war, they knew and they had come to expect that they would
16 be taken out to carry out tasks near the front line, and sometimes on the
17 front line. Some of the prisoners have given evidence to this Court - now
18 we obviously have to evaluate that - that there was a particular vehicle
19 that came and a particular driver which made them very frightened, and
20 they didn't like going with this particular driver. They associated him
21 with something they didn't like. And that's why I'm asking you, did you
22 ever get any impression that they associated you with Benko Penavic? Did
23 anybody ever volunteer to go on your work force and avoid any others?
24 A. I wouldn't be able to answer your question because I couldn't even
25 look these men in the eyes, let alone try to understand their feelings.
1 JUDGE CLARK: Fair enough.
2 Now, again, I know that you were 16 or 17 during these events, but
3 you were a local of the city of Mostar. You told us that you knew where
4 Mr. Stela's headquarters were. Do you know what that building was before
5 the war, before it became his headquarters?
6 A. I cannot recall.
7 JUDGE CLARK: Now, you were asked yesterday about the destruction
8 of mosques in the city of Mostar. In the period that you were with the
9 military units and then the ATG, did you know of any reason that was
10 offered, any discussion, about why the mosques were being destroyed?
11 A. I may not know the reason given, but I think that the goal of all
12 this fighting and the war overall was to destroy the Muslims and anything
13 that is associated with the Muslims in that area.
14 JUDGE CLARK: Thank you. Now, I'm going to come to a subject that
15 you're probably uncomfortable with, but I would like an answer. We know
16 that you were injured I think in September 1993. Is that correct?
17 A. September.
18 JUDGE CLARK: Is that -- or October?
19 A. It was the 15th of July, 1993.
20 JUDGE CLARK: Now, we may have to go into private session for
21 this, but I'll ask the question first. You described a conflict between
22 your commander and Mr. Tuta, and you described how they had a meeting to
23 resolve this conflict. Did that conflict have anything to do with the
24 fact that there were Muslims on this particular ATG?
25 A. I wouldn't be able to tell you that.
1 JUDGE CLARK: Do you know what the conflict was? What the reason
2 for the conflict was?
3 A. I wouldn't know.
4 JUDGE CLARK: Very good. If you don't know the reason for the
5 conflict, you obviously can't answer my questions.
6 Did the conflict between these two men have anything to do with
7 your leaving the country?
8 A. I wouldn't know how to answer that.
9 JUDGE CLARK: Those are all the questions I had to ask you. And
10 thank you for trying to answer.
11 JUDGE LIU: Judge Diarra.
12 JUDGE DIARRA: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
13 Witness, I have one question for you. After the 8th of May, 1992,
14 you took part in a lot of activities of the HVO. What I was particularly
15 interested in is the ethnic cleansing operations in which you took part.
16 You described this operation in detail. You talked about violence and the
17 theft that occurred after the expulsion, after the expelling of the
19 Could you tell me, remind me, who gave you these orders, and under
20 whose orders did you operate when you carried out these operations? Who
21 was your direct commander?
22 A. It was Mario Milicevic, Baja.
23 JUDGE DIARRA: [Interpretation] And could you please tell me,
24 who -- Baja was under whose orders?
25 A. Tuta's.
1 JUDGE DIARRA: [Interpretation] Thank you, Witness. And I respect
2 the fact that you chose to work for the HVO to save your own life and the
3 life of the members of your family. Thank you.
4 JUDGE LIU: Any questions out of Judge's questions?
5 MR. PORIOUVAEV: No.
6 JUDGE LIU: It seems to me Mr. Krsnik has a question.
7 Further cross-examination by Mr. Krsnik:
8 Q. [Interpretation] Witness, first one question that relates to the
9 questions asked by Her Honour Judge Clark. In -- when answering my
10 questions and questions posed to you by the Prosecutor, did you ever talk
11 about the conflicts between Tuta and Baja?
12 A. I don't understand your question.
13 Q. Did you give evidence in the last three days -- during that
14 evidence, did you ever say anything about the conflict between Tuta and
15 Baja Milicevic?
16 A. I don't know exactly what you're referring to. Is it between
17 Mostar and Siroki Brijeg or --
18 Q. What Judge Clark asked you.
19 A. I don't recall what Judge Clark asked me there. Can you please
20 explain it to me.
21 Q. Judge Clark asked you what kind of a conflict it was between Tuta
22 and Baja and whether that was the reason why you left the country.
23 A. I left the country because I was not welcome, not even on the
24 right bank where I took part in the war.
25 Q. When you were wounded, was that in combat or was it outside of the
1 zone of combat operations?
2 A. Outside of the zone of combat operations. I was -- I was wounded
3 at a bend on the way from -- to Siroki Brijeg and Citluk.
4 Q. So somebody shot at you?
5 A. There was shooting going on there the whole day. It was -- I was
6 out in the open, and it was a very volatile situation there on that day.
7 Q. So you're trying to say that the bullet came from the east side?
8 In other words, that the Muslims had hit you?
9 A. I can't make that assumption.
10 Q. How far is that from the -- how far was it from that intersection
11 going to Citluk and -- than the first ABiH lines?
12 A. About 300 metres as the crow flies.
13 Q. In your statement, you said that you were hit by a bullet fired
14 from a machine-gun and that it came from a thousand metres, and that it
15 was a fragmentation bullet that only was fragmented once it hit the
17 A. That is what I was told. That is how things were explained to
18 me. But the front line was -- the first positions were 300 metres.
19 Q. Let me go back. I find it difficult to communicate with you. Was
20 it -- what did you testify about, a conflict between Baja and Tuta or Baja
21 and Stela?
22 A. It was between Stela and Baja, but perhaps there was also conflict
23 between Tuta and Baja due to the cleansing of Kozica, which from what I
24 know, was something that Tuta did not allow -- had not allowed.
25 Q. But this is second-hand knowledge.
1 A. These are -- this is the information that I received from my
2 then-commander Baja.
3 Q. And also, when Her Honour Judge Diarra asked you her question, you
4 said that Tuta was Baja's superior. Yesterday you very properly said that
5 you knew it and made that conclusion only on the basis of what Baja had
6 told you, that you had no personal knowledge of that.
7 A. I'd rather not go back to some --
8 Q. No, no, no. Sorry, excuse me, Witness, the question was: Who was
9 Baja's superior? And you said Tuta. But yesterday, whenever I asked you,
10 you said that you knew that because Baja had told you that. Is that
11 true? That is what you told me yesterday all day; is that correct?
12 A. Well, I think so. I answered very many questions yesterday.
13 Q. Well, yes, but we talked about it yesterday. And several times
14 when I asked you that, you said that you had no direct knowledge.
15 A. I don't remember that I worded it that way.
16 MR. KRSNIK: Very well. I do not have any further questions.
17 Thank you.
18 Questioned by the Court:
19 JUDGE CLARK: Sorry. Can I just say something? You're absolutely
20 right, Mr. Krsnik. I'm wrong. I'm reading my own notes here. And the
21 conflict was between Baja and Stela, not -- but it was resolved by
22 Mr. Tuta. I really am sorry.
23 I'm sorry. Can I ask you again about that? The conflict between
24 Baja and Stela is what you talked about yesterday. And did that -- did
25 that contribute to your leaving? Was it about Muslims in the ATG?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The reason -- I am not aware of the
2 reason for that conflict, but that was not the reason why I left Mostar.
3 I left Mostar for the reasons I have already stated. If you want me to, I
4 can repeat them.
5 JUDGE CLARK: No, I don't. I just owed everybody an apology for
6 the way I read my writing. And Mr. Krsnik was absolutely right. You did
7 not describe such a conflict. And it's not surprising you did not know
8 the answer. I'm sorry for causing that confusion.
9 JUDGE LIU: Well -- yes, Mr. Krsnik.
10 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] My apologies, Your Honours. Just one
11 more question, which now derives from Judge Clark's question, that there
12 was -- that there was some friction and that Tuta resolved it. But we do
13 not know whether it was Tuta indeed because this is the information that
14 the witness gives us, and that is not direct knowledge.
15 Further cross-examination by Mr. Krsnik:
16 Q. [Interpretation] Is that true?
17 A. Yes. All the information I received from Baja -- I'm sorry that
18 this man is not sitting here, but you'll have to ask about it elsewhere.
19 Q. And you'd like Baja Milicevic -- to see here in this Court?
20 A. Well, what I'd like to does not really matter, does it?
21 Q. Thank you.
22 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Witness, for coming here to help us by
23 giving your evidence. We were sorry that we have kept you for so long.
24 We wish you all good luck in your future. When the usher pulls down the
25 blinds, he will show you out of the courtroom.
1 And the last thing I have to tell you: That we request a
2 representative from the Prosecutor with the presence of someone from the
3 Registrar to go to your place to make a certified copy of that document to
4 make sure whether the two pages are on the same document. We are
5 expecting your cooperation in this respect.
6 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me, Mr. President.
7 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
8 MR. SCOTT: Did you mean that someone from the Registry has to
9 travel to where this witness lives to obtain that document?
10 JUDGE LIU: Well, the witness told us that he has this document in
11 the hotel. He lived here in The Hague.
12 MR. SCOTT: All right. If that's correct -- it wasn't clear to
13 me, Mr. President. But I certainly defer to your memory if that's what
14 you think.
15 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
16 You may go now, Witness.
17 [The witness withdrew]
18 JUDGE LIU: At this moment, are there any documents to tender,
19 Mr. Prosecutor?
20 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Yes, Your Honour. The documents are as follows:
21 Exhibit P11.18/18 -- /11, sorry. /11. P14.5/12. P16.3/1. P14.3/7.
22 P26.9/4. P15.2/2. The Documents P620.1, P621.1. As for the Documents
23 P556, P588, P702, P774, they have been already tendered before.
24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Are there any objections?
25 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] As usual, Your Honours, we do not
1 object to photographs. And for the others, again, as usual, I'd like to
2 have three days -- or was it seven days? I don't really remember. Before
3 we say whether we object to the rest of the documents whose admission is
4 sought. But we shall do it very quickly.
5 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Krsnik, now we are approaching the end of the
6 Prosecution's case. And those documents have been extensively quoted,
7 used, debated during the trial. We have kept this witness for three days
8 already. We know your objections on those documents. We believe that we
9 are ready to make decisions on those documents. They are not extensive
11 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, by all means, Your Honour. Some
12 of the documents that were tendered, we already objected to those. I
13 agree clearly. And the Defence should like to seek the --
14 JUDGE LIU: Wait a minute.
15 Mr. Par?
16 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] Mr. Vinko Martinovic's Defence objects
17 to 566, 588, 620.1. We object to orally. I do not know whether the Court
18 would prefer us to object to them in writing or ...
19 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Par. I think I have stated our reason very
20 clearly concerning of all those objections. Those documents are very
21 simple ones. It is not so complicated, and we believe that we are in the
22 position to make decisions on the admission of those documents.
23 We rule that those documents are admitted into the evidence except
24 that one we need some corroborations from the certified photocopies of
25 that document.
1 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Your Honour, I have not tendered this document
2 into evidence.
3 JUDGE LIU: I see. Thank you very much.
4 Yes, Mr. Krsnik. Are there any documents you are going to tender
5 through this witness?
6 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours. It is D1/40,
7 which was PP14.5; D1/41, that is P590; D1/42, or P14.3; D1/43, or PP26.9.
8 And now, one more document, which would be D1/44. That is all the
9 documents that we were given as part and parcel of the statement, that is,
10 attached to the statement that this witness gave to the OTP under a joint
11 number D1/44, and... My apologies.
12 Your Honours, Photographs 20.4, 20.9. And if our distinguished
13 registrar could help me, the third photograph which has the number that
14 Ms. Kimberly was kind to give up. I don't know which was the number of
15 the photograph.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Those have been already admitted by the
18 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, I know that. But what was its
19 number, that photograph's number that Ms. Kimberly gave me that I showed
20 to the witness? What was the number on that photograph?
21 THE REGISTRAR: 20.8. Excuse me.
22 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. So I'd like to
23 tender these three photographs showing us Heliodrom, and the witness was
24 unable to identify any building, any of the buildings to which he went to
25 collect his prisoners.
1 JUDGE LIU: Any objections, Mr. Prosecutor?
2 MR. KRSNIK: [In English] I have another.
3 JUDGE LIU: Okay, okay.
4 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] And photograph Exhibit 26.9, that is
5 the photograph of the tobacco station marked by the witness; that is, the
6 witness marked out the headquarters of the Convicts Battalion on that
8 THE REGISTRAR: That is already D1/43.
9 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, registrar.
10 JUDGE LIU: Any objections?
11 MR. PORIOUVAEV: Yes, Your Honour. Maybe it's not an objection,
12 but I need some clarification. That's about the joint -- the document
13 under the joint number. Mr. Krsnik means that it's all annexes to witness
14 statements -- to the witness statement of this witness. But there are
15 different kinds of documents in this -- within these annexes, including
16 the document that already has its number and has been already tendered by
17 the Prosecution. This is membership certificate. There may be some
18 confusion then, because these documents has already its Prosecution
19 number, 621.1, and it has been admitted by you today.
20 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik.
21 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I don't know. Perhaps
22 we're talking at cross-purposes. I said all those which are attached and
23 do not have their numbers. Of course, 621 has its number, so I don't mean
24 this. I mean all the others which had -- do not have numbers and yet were
25 attached. Do you want me to list all these documents? We were given the
1 set. But I can follow the -- I can give you by quoting the Prosecutor's
2 pages. I don't know. I'm in your hands. I don't know how to identify
3 them otherwise. I noted down all the Prosecution's numbers on every page,
4 or it might take too much time. Perhaps I should do it in writing.
5 JUDGE LIU: You may submit those numbers to the registrar.
6 Mr. Par?
7 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I also would like to seek
9 a clarification. When I objected to the Prosecutor's exhibit, I didn't
10 mean those simple documents but three documents which are somewhat more
11 complex in nature, and they are 566. That is the special report of the
12 military police of the 3rd of August, 1993. I also had in mind P588,
13 which is the report of the SIS of the 2nd of September. I also had in
14 mind P620.1. That is Information A about the removal of persons of Muslim
15 ethnicity from Centar II locality. And also I meant 702, which is, again,
16 a report of the military police.
17 Perhaps I misunderstood something. I do not know -- I'm not aware
18 that these documents have been adopted. If not, then I'm objecting to
19 them, and I can do it in writing as well. But perhaps I am wrong. So my
20 question is, Have these documents been adopted, have they been admitted
21 into evidence or not? I don't know.
22 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Par, the first document. What's the number
23 of the first document? You told us that it's 566.
24 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] 556, P556.
25 JUDGE LIU: I would like to inform you, by the decisions we
1 rendered just now, those documents have been admitted into the evidence.
2 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. Then please
3 receive my apologies.
4 JUDGE LIU: Well, since there is no objections to all those photos
5 marked by the witness during these proceedings, we believe that all photos
6 tendered by the Defence counsel are admitted into the evidence.
7 And as for the statement of this witness - I mean the previous
8 statement - Mr. Krsnik, you have to know that as usual practice, we do not
9 admit the previous statement into the evidence, including its attachment.
10 But we'll give it an ID number. And they're still alive in the document
11 files. So when we evaluate those evidence, we will make reference to this
13 It is so decided.
14 Well, Mr. Prosecutor, how about your next witness?
15 Yes, Mr. Scott.
16 MR. SCOTT: Your Honour, the next witness will be Major Rule. And
17 there will be no protective measures. And I don't know what the
18 Chamber -- we have ten minutes, but I'm happy to proceed either way.
19 JUDGE LIU: Well, we'll sit for another ten minutes. Then we'll
21 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President.
22 JUDGE LIU: I have to make the best use of the time available to
24 MR. SCOTT: I fully agree.
25 JUDGE LIU: Because we lost two hours for yesterday's sitting.
1 MR. SCOTT: That's fine. Yes.
2 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Call in the witness, please.
3 And are you going to brief us about relevance?
4 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour, I will.
5 [The witness entered court]
6 JUDGE LIU: Good morning, Witness.
7 THE WITNESS: Good morning, sir.
8 JUDGE LIU: Would you please make the solemn declaration in
9 accordance with the paper the usher is showing to you.
10 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
11 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
12 WITNESS: ALISTAIR RULE
13 JUDGE LIU: You may sit down, please.
14 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
15 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Scott, you may proceed.
16 MR. SCOTT: Thank you. Mr. President. And Mr. President, to
17 answer the Chamber's question, this witness will give evidence relevant to
18 the background portions of the amended indictment, paragraph 7 to 11;
19 superior authority, paragraphs 14 to 17; and international armed conflict,
20 paragraph 18.
21 Examined by Mr. Scott:
22 Q. Good morning, Major.
23 A. Good morning, sir.
24 Q. Major Rule, we've obviously already stated your rank. You are a
25 major in the British army; is that correct?
1 A. That's correct, yes.
2 Q. And you've been in the British army for approximately 25 and one
3 half years; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel and witness please pause
6 between question and answer.
7 MR. SCOTT:
8 Q. Major, we've been both warned. Because we both speak English, we
9 tend to question and answer in quick succession. So we'll try to both
10 make a pause -- a bit more of a pause.
11 Is it correct, sir, that your current assignment in the British
12 army is you are the officer commanding urban operations wing?
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. Now, sir, I want to direct your attention, please, to
15 approximately mid-October 1992. Were you a member or an officer of a
16 reconnaissance party sent by the British army in connection with the
17 peacekeeping mission in Bosnia in the area of Vitez and Gornji Vakuf?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Would you just tell us briefly how you became involved in that and
20 what you did in the month of October to carry out your mission.
21 A. I was part of the British Battalion which was formed to deploy on
22 operations to Central Bosnia. That battalion sent a reconnaissance party
23 in mid-October. And as I was a company commander in that battalion, I
24 formed part of the reconnaissance party, and our job was to locate bases
25 for operation once the main body of the British Battalion had arrived.
1 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.
2 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, if it please the Trial
3 Chamber, this may be background, but I believe it goes beyond background.
4 We object -- the Defence of Mr. Naletilic objects to this testimony based
5 on the fact that it is well outside the scope and boundaries of this
6 indictment and the geographic location of the counts of this indictment as
7 pertains to Mr. Naletilic. We believe it's highly irrelevant. And we
8 object on those grounds, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Meek, I believe that the Prosecutor is
10 asking some questions concerning with the background issues. When the
11 witness first came here, I believe both the counsels have the right to
12 prepare this witness into the situation. So we begin from October of
13 1992, and we'll see where the Prosecutor is leading us to.
14 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President.
15 Q. Major, is it correct that the overall commanding officer of this
16 British Battalion force was a British colonel named Robert, or more
17 commonly known as, Bob Stewart?
18 A. That's correct, yes.
19 Q. And was there another senior officer involved in some role, during
20 part of this time at least, known as Brigadier Cumming?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. What was his role?
23 A. Brigadier Cumming was in command of the whole of the British
24 detachment that was deploying to Bosnia, but Colonel Stewart was the
25 commander of the British Battalion that was to operate in Central Bosnia;
1 therefore, Colonel Stewart led the reconnaissance, although clearly
2 Brigadier Cumming had an interest also in the reconnaissance as well.
3 Q. And you may have mentioned this a moment ago, but is it correct
4 that as part of this initial reconnaissance effort, there came a time when
5 the larger group left the Gornji Vakuf area and you stayed behind with a
6 small group to essentially lay the foundation or do the groundwork for the
7 later arrival of the main force?
8 A. That's correct. My own company, as part of the British Battalion,
9 was assigned the area around Gornji Vakuf from which to operate, and that
10 is why I remained behind there, to carry out further "reckies" for my
12 Q. And in that same regard, in fact, your company was known as the
13 B - "B" as in boy - B Company of the British army unit known as the 1st
14 Cheshire Regiment?
15 A. Correct.
16 Q. And were you the officer commanding of Company B throughout your
17 time in Bosnia?
18 A. I was officer commanding of the company until mid-January.
19 Q. And you left sometime the second half of January approximately, is
20 that correct, or perhaps mid-January?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Very well. Throughout that time that you were present, were you
23 primarily involved in the areas around, as been mentioned, Gornji Vakuf
24 and Prozor?
25 A. Yes. And further -- further up the valley to Bugojno as well.
1 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, I thought it might assist the Chamber,
2 but if the Court could look momentarily at Exhibit P3, which is the map
3 of -- at least that portion, a large portion of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
4 And Mr. Usher, could you please assist me by providing the witness
5 a copy of Exhibit P3.
6 Should be a map, P3. If you can't find it, I'm certainly happy to
7 let the usher use mine. There's a couple of marks on it, but I don't
8 think it really matters.
9 Usher, if you could assist me in such a way, if that could be
10 placed on the ELMO, perhaps, is the easiest thing to do for everyone in
11 the courtroom, and arrange it in such a way that Gornji Vakuf and Prozor
12 area will be shown on the screen.
13 I think with the assistance of the technical booth, we can
14 probably zero in a bit more on the Gornji Vakuf/Prozor area. Very well.
15 Very well. That's probably fine.
16 Q. Major, those are -- those two municipalities and the surrounding
17 region, that is the area that you were primarily involved in during your
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And can you just point out - because this is not an area that the
21 Chamber has heard so much about - within the municipalities, the
22 approximate location of the town in Gornji Vakuf. There should be a
23 pointer available, or if you can use whatever's handy to you.
24 A. [Indicates]
25 Q. That is the town of Gornji Vakuf. And could you likewise please
1 show the Chamber where the town of Prozor is located.
2 A. [Indicates]
3 Q. All right. Very well. Can you just, again by way of background,
4 in connection with the case in general so the Chamber will understand
5 this, was the Gornji Vakuf/Prozor area considered to be an important
6 region because of transportation links?
7 A. Yes. It was certainly an important area for the operation, for
8 the UN operation. And it appeared to be a fairly key route further on
9 into Central Bosnia, yes.
10 Q. Was it considered either the principal or one of the principal
11 routes from Croatia and Herzegovina into Central Bosnia?
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.
13 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, that is a leading and
14 speculative -- that's a leading and suggestive question, and we're beyond
15 background at this point in time. And I apologise to Judge Clark for
16 having to make this objection, but I do believe it's a leading and
17 suggestive question.
18 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Meek, this question is not related to the
19 indictment at all. We just want to know the situations there. Let's hear
20 what the witness is going to tell us.
21 Witness, you may answer this question.
22 A. It was certainly one of the major routes in, but it wasn't the
23 only route in.
24 MR. SCOTT:
25 Q. All right. And finally on this point, before moving forward in
1 your testimony, if I can ask the booth's assistance please by zooming out
2 so we can again see the larger area. All right. That's fine.
3 Could you just, again, to orient the Chamber, can you point out in
4 relation to where Gornji Vakuf and Prozor are located in approximately the
5 centre of the screen now where such places -- can you point to the
6 municipality of Vitez?
7 A. [Indicates]
8 Q. And can you likewise then point to the -- sorry, my apology.
9 A. I wasn't pointing at. Yeah, there it is there.
10 Q. Could you likewise indicate to the Chamber the location of the
11 municipality of Busovaca.
12 A. [Indicates]
13 Q. And was the main force of the British Battalion located in the
14 Vitez area?
15 A. Yes, it was.
16 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Scott, it's time.
17 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you very much.
18 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Usher, would you please bring the witness out of
19 the room first.
20 We'll resume at 11.30.
21 --- Recess taken at 11.02 a.m.
22 --- On resuming at 11.31 a.m.
23 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Scott. Please continue.
24 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President.
25 Q. Major, I was warned in no uncertain terms at the break that we
1 are -- both of us are still moving too quickly in our questions and
2 answers, so I'll ask you to assist in pausing a bit. If you can just
3 think about -- maybe look at the transcript. When you see that my
4 question has been transcribed on the screen in front of you, then perhaps
5 that will be a cue to you that you can answer. And I'll do the same.
6 It's my problem as well.
7 Now, Major, will you tell us -- as you became involved in that
8 region that you've discussed this morning, what were your principal
9 activities during your tour there, your principal concerns?
10 A. Because I was operating from Gornji Vakuf, I had my own area of
11 responsibility. And really our main effort was to try and create a
12 climate within which we could allow the various humanitarian agencies to
13 operate as freely as possible within that area.
14 Q. Was it part of your standard duties to also liaise with, for
15 instance, local HVO and local ABiH commanders and other local leaders?
16 A. Probably that was the most important aspect of the role which I
17 believed we had. We had to try and create the atmosphere and the
18 understanding in whatever way possible to allow relatively free movement
19 of humanitarian aid.
20 Q. All right. Now, I want to turn your testimony for the next few
21 minutes to the topic -- to this topic. Can you describe to the Chamber,
22 please, the role that information gathering played in the work of B
23 Company of the 1st Cheshire Regiment during your tour.
24 A. Because of the -- the operational experience of the British army
25 in a number of operations, we have found it -- and certainly my own
1 battalion had found it important to gather information about what was
2 happening in -- certainly within our own region but also broadly across
3 the whole picture, because obviously everything impacted on what we were
4 doing. So if there were local disagreements, then clearly that had an
5 impact on how we could carry out our duties. And it was therefore
6 important that we had as much information about what was happening, not
7 only locally but -- but probably nationally as well.
8 And we have a fairly tried and tested method by which we put in an
9 infrastructure which allows us to gather information on what is
10 happening. And the basis of that was that whenever we sent our patrols or
11 whatever movement that our own soldiers took part in was always -- one of
12 the main aims of it was to gather information on what was happening.
13 Q. You used the term a moment ago "infrastructure." Was there a
14 programme in place, if you will, or an infrastructure for the purpose of
15 both collecting and recording -- and then I should add, reporting
17 A. Very much so. And again, our previous experience had shown how
18 important this was. We therefore on earlier operations in other theatres
19 put in place a system by which we could gather this information. The
20 first thing we did and we recognised was important was to set up a small
21 cell of individuals, NCOs, whose sole responsibility was to gather and
22 collate this information for us. And the way that we would collate that
23 information or gather that information was that any patrol or any person
24 that was moving around the area would be briefed first by this small
25 information section led by a colour sergeant, a senior non-commissioned
1 officer, to obviously get them brief them up on what possibly they may be
2 able to see and what may be happening around them as they went out on
3 their various duties.
4 Each soldier was given an aid memoir, a small booklet which had
5 various different equipment types, had various badges, types of uniform
6 which certain soldiers may be wearing. And certainly, as part of our
7 training of our soldiers, we made sure that they were aware of what sort
8 of equipment, what sort of soldiers they could expect to see.
9 Once the patrol was at an end and the soldiers had returned to the
10 base, they would be debriefed. The whole patrol would be brought into a
11 small room, sat down. The patrol commander would have to produce a
12 report, and the information cell would question the soldiers on the ground
13 to find out whether or not they had seen anything of any interest.
14 Often, what might not be interesting to a soldier or what he might
15 not perceive to be interesting may have obviously other implications. So
16 that is why each soldier was questioned, and all the information that was
17 possible could be ascertained from that patrol.
18 Q. As a result of this extensive process that you've just described,
19 including the debriefing, would there be then a report prepared based on
20 all of that?
21 A. At the end of each day, it was the responsibility of the colour
22 sergeant in charge of the information cell to provide a written report to
23 the battalion headquarters, which was based in Vitez. And it was then the
24 job of the battalion information staff to correlate that information,
25 obviously getting information from other areas as well, and send it as one
1 principal information summary, which went to the headquarters of the
2 British forces in Split.
3 Q. The particular report, the daily type of report that you've told
4 us about, was that known as something called - and I'll spell this in a
5 moment - a milinfosum, spelled milinfosum?
6 A. Yes, that's a typically military abbreviated term for military
7 information summary.
8 Q. And can you tell us in addition to those reports, the milinfosums,
9 were there any other type of standard types of documents, reports, that
10 were generated as part of the British Battalion's work?
11 A. That would have been -- there would have been all sorts of
12 different types of documents which we produced, but that was the principal
13 vehicle in which we passed on military information. All the others really
14 dealt with the day-to-day running of a military organisation. However,
15 having said that, if a piece of information arose which was of particular
16 interest, then this would be passed up immediately if it was considered
17 important enough. And that would be in the form of what we call a sitrep,
18 or situation report.
19 Q. Very well. Now, can you tell us, Major, the procedures that
20 you've told us about just now for some minutes, was that unique to
21 B Company of the 1st Cheshire, or was that standard -- if you know, was
22 that standard practice with the British army units that were on
23 peacekeeping mission in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
24 A. We were the first battalion that went there, so clearly there was
25 no precedent in Bosnia. But I am convinced that that system would have
1 been continued by the other British units which followed my own battalion
2 through the operation.
3 Q. Are you able to say, Major, that not perhaps in every detail that
4 you've told us this morning but that type of information gathering and
5 reporting would be standard British army practice anywhere?
6 A. Yes. And more than that, each soldier, because of previous
7 experience, would very much have that role inculcated within him. He
8 would realise that every time he went out that an important part of his
9 individual mission would be to gather and look for interesting
11 Q. Major, a couple of quick questions before turning to some of the
12 documents themselves. As a professional military officer and as a person
13 who was on the ground in Bosnia-Herzegovina in late 1992, early 1993, can
14 you tell the Chamber, please, can you make any observations or give an
15 assessment on whether the HVO, for instance, as you saw it, was an
16 organised military force?
17 A. Yes, it was an organised military force, and I was acquainted with
18 the commander quite well.
19 Q. Can you also give the Chamber any observation you can about, for
20 instance, the quality or the effectiveness, for instance, of the HVO
21 communication system?
22 A. Yes. Because it came as quite a surprise to me when I did see
23 evidence of their communication capability. We, as an army, had
24 particular problems with communications ourselves. And in fact, our only
25 guaranteed communications out of Gornji Vakuf were through satellite
1 telephone, Inmarsat. We attempted on numerous occasions to try and get a
2 land line opened so that our soldiers could phone their families. And in
3 fact, for the first several months of our tour, none of our soldiers were
4 able to speak to their families other than through letter writing.
5 I went to the HVO headquarters in Gornji Vakuf once to have a
6 discussion with the commander, and we were talking and talking about
7 families prior to our discussion. And I just happened to mention to him
8 that I hadn't spoken to my wife for a couple of months, and to which he
9 was surprised and showed me into a communications centre adjacent to the
10 room that I was in and said if I wished to, I could phone my wife now.
11 And I picked up the phone and phoned Germany, which is where my family
12 were, and was immediately able to get through.
13 In addition to that, I saw a number of different types of what
14 looked to me to be quite sophisticated communications items of equipment
15 within that communication centre.
16 Q. Can you comment further, if you recall, on any other instance that
17 you witnessed on the reach of the field communication?
18 A. Yes, I can. And it remains very clear in my mind because we
19 always had particular difficulty communicating ourselves. We used VHF
20 radio, which meant that we really required line of sight to be able to
21 communicate, which made it very difficult for us to communicate using VHF
22 to Vitez, for example. Communications were always a problem for us.
23 When the fighting first started in Gornji Vakuf at the beginning
24 of January, there were a -- our first aim was to try and negotiate some
25 sort of cease-fire, and I had all the commanders into my own base, and we
1 negotiated a cease-fire. And I can remember clearly that a cease-fire of
2 heavy weapons was due to come in to being at a given time. I don't recall
3 the exact time now.
4 As we were sitting in our conference room, this time passed, and
5 heavy weapons continued to be fired. I then saw the commander of the HVO
6 pick up a very small commercial-type radio and immediately send a message
7 over this means. And I know that possibly eight, nine, even ten stations
8 answered in very rapid succession, and this impressed me because our own
9 communications were nowhere near as good as that.
10 Q. And did the firing, in fact, cease after that time?
11 A. I think it was over the period that I was there during the
12 fighting, there were various occasions where fighting died down but not
13 necessarily completely ceased.
14 Q. All right. I didn't mean to suggest overall. But can you tell
15 the Chamber whether as a result of that communication that you were
16 telling us a moment ago, that there seemed to be a lessening of fire?
17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.
18 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, that question, the Defence
19 submits, is purely asking for speculation in its answer.
20 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Meek, we don't believe that is speculation
21 because this witness was there at that moment, but we believe that this
22 question is a little bit irrelevant to the very issues.
23 Mr. Scott, would you please lead us to the documents as soon as
25 MR. SCOTT: I will, Your Honour. I didn't intend to stay on this
1 issue long, but I did think it might assist the Chamber in assessing some
2 of the HVO capabilities that have come up in the course of the trial.
3 Q. Let me ask you, Major -- and I say this just because I think the
4 Chamber should know this important fact of -- did you lose one -- a
5 lance-corporal who was shot and killed while on a peacekeeping mission in
6 Gornji Vakuf during your time?
7 A. Yes, I did.
8 Q. Can you tell the Chamber, again before returning to the documents,
9 during your tour in Bosnia-Herzegovina, was it ever reported to you -- let
10 me rephrase that. Was information ever reported to you about the sighting
11 of members or components of the army of the Republic of Croatia?
12 A. Yes. Yes, it was. Certainly towards the latter part of December
13 and -- and the early part of January, our information gathering was very
14 much focussed on the perceived build-up of tension and pressure from the
15 HVO. But also, I recall, my patrols spotting what they thought to be HV
16 regular troops.
17 Q. And can you recall and assist the Chamber this morning with any
18 particular details or any particular sightings of HV troops or
20 A. Clearly the detail of the military information sums is -- it is
21 now ten years. But there are two occasions that I clearly remember. One
22 was the sighting of well-equipped and well-dressed soldiers with a tiger
23 patch on their arms, which a number of my patrols reported. We, using our
24 own assessment, assessed this to be elements of the 1st Tiger Brigade of
25 the HV. And also we spotted a number of command variant vehicles which
1 would have had communications equipment which were required beyond the
2 tactical level. They were higher than tactical level communications. And
3 these were also reported to me through -- through the military
4 information -- through my patrols, and which were passed on using the
5 military information sums.
6 Q. Can you also tell the Chamber, did you ever have occasion yourself
7 to meet with an officer who you assessed or concluded was an HV officer?
8 A. After the fighting in Gornji Vakuf, initially our impression was
9 that it may have been, you know, just a local instant. But clearly it
10 gathered in scope and scale. And certainly on the second day of the
11 fighting, we had representatives from both the BiH people in Zenica and
12 also representatives from the HVO in Mostar. I remember one of the
13 officers -- and I roughly remember his name. He was a very striking
14 character. And we understood it that this chap was actually a regular HV
16 Q. All right. I'll ask you why you thought that in a moment. But if
17 you recall, can you give us this officer's name.
18 A. I remember it as something like Andric. But I have subsequently
19 seen military information sums which say that that -- I didn't recall his
20 name correctly. It was Andrejevic. But Andric, Andrejevic, was the name
21 that I remember.
22 Q. And if I -- can you assist the Chamber a bit further that what was
23 it that made you conclude that this was a HV officer.
24 A. Clearly military information works upwards and downwards. But it
25 is our responsibility to brief what we saw, but it was also important for
1 us to gain information downwards as well. And through those channels, I
2 had it reported back to me that this particular officer was an HV
4 Q. Now, I should probably ask -- we talked several times this morning
5 about the fighting in Gornji Vakuf. Can you tell the Chamber
6 approximately the dates -- at least during that particular time period. I
7 realise there may have been fighting more than once. But the time you
8 referred to this morning, when was that fighting taking place?
9 A. The -- I mean, I was only witness to the first, initial, major
10 breakout in fighting, because I subsequently moved on. But it would have
11 been from -- from the beginning of January, perhaps 6th or 7th of January,
12 where the real first incidence occurred, to when I actually left. The
13 fighting was actually still going on as I left.
14 Q. So --
15 A. Because I was in the process of handing over my command to another
16 officer, because I had been posted.
17 Q. So this is approximately the first half of January 1993.
18 A. Yes.
19 MR. SCOTT: All right. Major -- and if I could have the usher's
20 assistance. If a blue binder of documents could be provided to the
21 witness. The first exhibit, just by way of reference, will be P200.1.
22 And I believe those have been distributed. For the most part, I think
23 Defence counsel has those. I can see they're being provided to the
24 Chamber now.
25 Q. If you can turn -- if you can find in the lower right corner,
1 approximately, Major, the -- most of the exhibit numbers will appear about
2 there. There may be some variation. But looking at P200.1, can you tell
3 the Judges just in your own words briefly what that document is.
4 A. This document is a milinfosum --
5 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.
6 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, I'm going to make this
7 objection and ask the Trial Chamber in its discretion to allow a
8 continuing objection if this is overruled. And the objection is this:
9 This document, Exhibit P200.1, which I think has been given to Defence
10 counsel and has been given to Your Honours also, is dated 16 December
11 1992. The witness has just testified before my objection that it was a
12 milinfosum from that day, that is, prior to the term and scope of the
13 indictment against Mr. Naletilic. And my objection will be it's outside
14 the scope and therefore is not relevant in any of these other and further
15 documents. Some may be in the time frame of the indictment that this
16 Trial Chamber is concerned with. I believe there will be many outside the
17 time frame. And that's my objection, Your Honours.
18 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Meek, those documents have been tendered already.
19 Only because we cast some doubts about the origin, the form, of those
20 documents, we did not admitted them into the evidence at that time. We
21 also believe that those documents are dealing with the background matters,
22 which is related to this very case.
23 We'll hear what this witness is going to tell us at this moment.
24 And at a later stage, we will evaluate all those documents. You can trust
25 us. We can make the proper conclusions on those documents.
1 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, I absolutely trust you. Thank you very
3 JUDGE LIU: You may proceed.
4 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President. Now, if I can just add, so
5 the record is clear, these documents all relate to, when they were
6 originally tendered, two principal issues; that is, the existence of
7 international armed conflict and the widespread and systematic nature of
8 the HVO conduct and campaign which encompasses, in our view, and we submit
9 and will submit, the conduct of these two accused. They are clearly
10 relevant to this -- this time period is clearly relevant. The existence
11 of an international armed conflict extends throughout this time period, as
12 did the widespread and systematic nature of the conduct charged in the
14 Q. Now, Major, I apologise for the interruption. But if you can look
15 at P200.1, you were about to tell us -- I think I had asked you -- can you
16 just tell us briefly what that document is.
17 A. This is a milinfosum which would have been produced by the
18 battalion headquarters that was based in Vitez. It would have -- it would
19 have been put together as a result of lower-level milinfosums, which would
20 have come from various sources, principally the three rifle companies that
21 were operating in the BritBat area. And so if there was anything of any
22 importance or notes of significance that had occurred in the Gornji Vakuf
23 area, it would appear within this milinfosum, which would have been put
24 together at the end of the day and forwarded to Com Brit For based in
1 It states clearly there that it's milinfosum number 45, clearly
2 the 45th milinfosum which we produced. And the date which it refers to,
3 16th of December.
4 Q. Very well. And you've anticipated some detailed questions I was
5 going to ask you. Looking to the second page of that exhibit, is there a
6 particular section -- for instance, because on the first page there's
7 other areas, Travnik, Vitez. Looking at the second page, do you have a
8 portion that includes the Prozor area?
9 A. The paragraphs that refer to both Prozor and Bugojno would have
10 originated from my company because we were responsible for operating in
11 those areas.
12 Q. And looking at the content -- I'm only going -- I'm going to move
13 rather quickly through these documents. But in looking at that part of
14 the document, is this one instance of reporting information about the
15 possible sighting of HV soldiers or units in your area of operation?
16 A. Are you referring to a particular page?
17 Q. I'm looking at the top of the second page on Exhibit 200.1, the
18 section on Prozor.
19 A. Yes, it does.
20 Q. Major, if I can ask you now to turn to Exhibit 208.1. And if the
21 Chamber will allow me, I will try to lead on these foundational issues
22 unless and until there's objection. Is this a milinfosum, in fact, number
23 67, dated the 6th of January, 1993?
24 A. Yes. I mean I assume because of the reference on the top of the
25 page that it's number 67.
1 Q. Well, if I'm assuming incorrectly, do you see anything on the
2 page - you tell us, Major, you're the witness - that would identify this
3 as milinfo 67?
4 A. Absolutely. I mean because the title, milinfosum, has been scored
5 out. That's why I was just checking that it was 67 because it would have
6 appeared in the title. But certainly, that very much appears to me
7 milinfosum number 67, yeah.
8 Q. Again, just to assist the Chamber, in about the second paragraph
9 under the heading, there's a section that says -- at least indicates "one,
10 Gornji Vakuf". In the second paragraph it starts with the words or
11 symbols A, and then C/S. What does the C/S stand for?
12 A. A call sign. It means it's a subunit -- yes, a subunit from my
13 command. That's how we would refer to it, a call sign. Because on the
14 radio, it would be a call sign, and it would be identified by that call
16 Q. And immediately below that on the next line - the Chamber may come
17 across these items in its ultimate review of the exhibits - there's a
18 reference there it looks like to GRYJ141585. Can you tell the Chamber
19 what that is?
20 A. That's the grid reference, the map grid reference, of the
21 location. So grid is abbreviated -- "GR" is the abbreviation for grid.
22 "YJ" is the designation of the particular map. And 141585 is the grid
23 reference or the coordinate of that location.
24 Q. Roughly, as I understand it, the first three digits, 141 being a
25 east/west measurement, and the 585 being a north/south measurement?
1 A. Correct.
2 Q. And down to the -- not the immediate next paragraph, seems to
3 indicate something "approx," "at approximately," but the next paragraph -
4 and I apologise for the quality of the copy - but it seems to indicate the
5 OC of BCOY. What is that telling us, or what does that mean?
6 A. That's me. As the officer commanding of B Company. "COY" is the
7 standard abbreviation for a company in British-abbreviated military
9 Q. Major, if you can then turn, please, to what has been marked as
10 IAC-26. And I will note for the Chamber that this document is
11 specifically one of the documents that the Chamber had numbered in
12 previous -- when this issue came up from and made its direction to us,
13 particular IAC-26.
14 And can you just briefly confirm, Major, this again, according to
15 the top of the page, is a 1st Cheshire milinfosum number 72 dated 11
16 January, 1993?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Can you please, then, turn to the next exhibit, P216.1. And can
19 you tell us what that is?
20 A. That is milinfosum number 77 dated the 16th of January, 1993.
21 Q. Now, I want you to turn over to the next page and the section
22 that's titled "G. Vakuf." And is that Gornji Vakuf?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. I would like to direct your attention, if I may, to the subsection
25 under that, B, B as in "boy". If you can cast your eyes on that for a
2 A. Yeah.
3 Q. Does that paragraph make reference to this officer that you were
4 telling about a few minutes ago that you had identified as an HV officer?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And it may be a bit anglicised spelling of a Slavic name, but
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Directing your attention to the next page, about the middle -- the
10 bottom half of the page, Section E, again, making reference to this
11 Colonel Andrejevic -- well, I think the document speaks for itself.
12 A. I mean, if I'm allowed to --
13 Q. Please, please.
14 A. -- just make the point that I was personally involved in all these
15 negotiations that took place and certainly was acquainted with this
16 colonel and the delegation that came from Zenica as well. And this refers
17 to a number of meetings that happened over a number of days.
18 Q. All right. Well, in fact, that's what I was hesitating about
19 asking you. But very briefly, can you tell us what the basic position of
20 this Colonel Andrejevic was at that time in relation to what was happening
21 in Gornji Vakuf?
22 A. Well, because he was new, and when he arrived, he was not known to
23 me, clearly initially, we weren't entirely sure what his role in it was.
24 But our assumption was - and we later, you know, discovered from talking
25 to him, which we did do both separately and in conference - that he had
1 come with a higher authority to carry out the negotiations into the
2 situation that was deteriorating within Gornji Vakuf at the time.
3 Q. Did he communicate a series of demands on the Muslims in Gornji
5 A. Yes, he did. And in fact, I clearly recall on one occasion that
6 when he wasn't getting the right responses to his demands, that he was
7 going to flatten Gornji Vakuf.
8 Q. If I can ask you to go to Exhibit 364. I'll just make sure that
9 I've -- yes, Exhibit 364, which should be next.
10 Now, Colonel -- excuse me, Major, looking at that document, will
11 you just again tell us what that is. And perhaps you can assist us,
12 please, with some of the other military abbreviations in the top part of
13 that -- at the very top part of that page.
14 A. Okay. Right. Well, this -- we were discussing earlier or talking
15 earlier about this being standard practice, producing these milinfosums.
16 This clearly deals with the time a number of months after I had left the
17 theatre and in fact after my own battalion had been replaced by one PWO,
18 which stands for the 1st Prince of Wales' Own Regiment of Yorkshire -- and
19 that's abbreviated to 1 PWO. And this clearly is one of their earlier
20 milinfosums shortly after they had taken the place of 1 Cheshire. And as
21 you can see, follows a very similar format to the ones that my own
22 battalion produced.
23 Q. And including, on the second page of that document, a section
24 again on Gornji Vakuf.
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. If you can go, please, now to Exhibit IAC-63, which should be
3 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, again, this is specifically one of the
4 exhibits which the Chamber had made inquiry about before.
5 A. Can I just confirm? You said IAC-63?
6 Q. Yes. And again, can you just tell us briefly what that document
8 A. Again, a 1 PWO, Prince of Wales' Own Regiment of Yorkshire,
9 milinfosum dated 16/1 much later on during their tour of duty, and again
10 is very consistent with -- with what we had done and, in fact, shows
11 probably a slight development in refining of the process.
12 Q. Picking up on a prior topic, was -- while you were in the area and
13 to your knowledge subsequent British forces, was one of the things -- you
14 said there was briefings about information that might be of interest. Was
15 it typically -- was one of those issues typically, again, the presence of
16 members or components of the Croatian army, the HV?
17 A. Yes. That would have been one of the key things or key indicators
18 that we would be -- we would be looking for, amongst other things. And
19 although you didn't raise it yourself, you can -- in the previous
20 milinfosum, there is a drawing, a sketch map, of something that somebody
21 would have seen, which perhaps required further definition and would be
22 precisely the sort of things that our private soldiers, our soldiers,
23 junior NCOs would be looking for to look for certain indicators.
24 Q. Very well. And on IAC-63 itself - if I can briefly direct your
25 attention to the top of page 3 - do you see a reference there indicating
1 the following: "Insignia were today noted in Prozor A, 5th Brigade, HV"?
2 A. Yes. Yeah, 5th Brigade, HV. And then -- yeah, and then a
3 description of that very badge underneath it.
4 Q. Can I ask you to please turn next to IAC-66. And again -- perhaps
5 if I'm allowed at this point, I can simply speed up the process a bit by
6 saying is this a milinfosum number 175, again of the 1st Prince of Wales'
7 Own, dated 20th of October, 1993?
8 A. Yes, quite clearly.
9 MR. SCOTT: And again, Mr. President, that particular document was
10 one of the documents the Chamber had had some question about.
11 Q. Let me next ask you --
12 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, just so you know, there's three
13 additional documents, and that will conclude my direct examination.
14 Q. If I can direct your attention to the next one, then, IAC-75. Can
15 you tell the Chamber what that document is. It looks -- may look a bit
16 different than some of the others, so could you explain what this kind of
17 report or document is.
18 A. Well, again, you know, I make the point that this is a year after
19 I had -- I had left the theatre. But if you look to the top right-hand
20 corner of the document, that's the address of the originator of this
21 document. So it's from the military information cell at headquarters
22 Brit For, which -- BFPO is the British forces post office number, which
23 was based in Split. And the distribution of that document would have been
24 at the end. So that is a milinfosum but at the next higher level. So
25 we've been dealing with milinfosums really at the battalion level. This
1 subsequently is a collation of the various infosums that they would have
2 received and which they passed on further.
3 Q. All right. Major, I'm just going to look through the body of this
4 document for a moment. I'm only looking for the moment for any military
5 jargon or abbreviations which you might be able to assist the Chamber with
6 while we have you here. Perhaps most of them are rather -- I'd hope
7 rather clear.
8 Let me ask you about one. I believe on the -- the pages aren't
9 really -- if you can refer to the -- well, if I can ask you simply to turn
10 down to the fourth page. The pages aren't really numbered clearly, but
11 there's a fax -- looks like a fax number up in the right corner, P4. And
12 if I can ask you to look at P5.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Then item number 18. 18A -- and I simply ask you this: There's
15 the word or phrase or something called elms at the first part of that
16 sentence. What does elms mean?
17 A. That is a recognised abbreviation for the word "elements." I
18 mean, I don't know if it helps the Court, but these abbreviations are
19 listed in various handbooks and are formally recognised as a British
20 military abbreviations, obviously to reduce the -- to reduce to a certain
21 shorthand the operational writing.
22 Q. All right. Turning to the next page, paragraph numbered 18,
24 A. Sorry, could you just say that again?
25 Q. Of course. The numbering seems to continue over and repeat itself
1 to some extent. But for whatever reason, on the next consecutive page of
2 this document, you will see another paragraph 18 that starts with the
3 items or symbols "UKLO."
4 A. That stands for United Kingdom liaison officer. And the small "S"
5 obviously is the plural of that, so United Kingdom liaison officers.
6 Q. What type of person was that?
7 A. In my experience, all our liaison officers were officers from
8 within the British army, whether they were directly drawn from the ranks
9 of the battalion or drawn from other areas in the army -- in the British
10 army and drawn in to carry out the specific role of a liaison officer,
11 between -- between all parties. So they would be involved with liaising
12 between sort of a -- UN forces but also with the other factions, which --
13 through whose areas we operated.
14 Q. All right. Now, the next thing I want to ask you, Major, is
15 looking down that page, under "Summary," you have A, B, C, and D. And you
16 have two sets, if I can characterise it that way, two different categories
17 of information. In A, you say, "claims or unconfirmed reports." And in
18 B, you have "confirmed sightings." And then again, C, and D, make the
19 same -- appear to make the same difference between "Claims or unconfirmed
20 reports," and "confirmed sightings." Can you explain to the Chamber,
21 please, the difference between -- well, some difference is probably
22 obvious, I suppose. What would it take -- what additional information was
23 considered when you would consider something to be a confirmed sighting?
24 A. Well, "unconfirmed" would be we were told of. We received
25 information perhaps from talking to people on the ground, using our own
1 liaison officers. It would have been reported to us by an agency outside
2 our organisation that these had been seen. As far as the confirmed
3 sightings would be reported, these would be those sightings that were
4 physically -- which physically our own soldiers had seen. So that would
5 be the difference.
6 Q. Very good.
7 Now, in concluding, I'll direct your attention to the next and
8 final exhibit in the packet, P783. Major, I'm simply going to ask you is
9 that, by what you can see here, another document prepared by the British
10 Battalion, clearly, again, at a different time, but according to what you
11 understood to be the standard practice of the British army on peacekeeping
12 mission in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
13 A. Yes. I don't think it would have been the British Battalion
14 because if you look at the address group, it says HQ, BHC, SSW. So there
15 was clearly some other headquarters that had by this time moved in -- into
16 that area.
17 Q. My apology for jumping to that.
18 A. Sorry. Yeah, I think --
19 Q. Can you assist the Chamber, for instance, on the second page - not
20 the fax cover, if you will - but on the second page of that document up in
21 the right corner, do you see again information connecting that to a
22 British unit?
23 A. Sorry, which page?
24 Q. It would be the second page of Exhibit P783.
25 A. Right. Sorry, yes. I was -- that's assuming that the fax cover
1 is page 1.
2 Q. That's correct. I'm sorry.
3 A. Yes, certainly.
4 Q. The second line, for instance, again, HQ, BHC, SSW, what would
5 that stand for?
6 A. This is -- I don't know for sure because the organisations did
7 change. But I am assuming it's Bosnia-Herzegovina Command, South
8 Southwest, but I'm not absolutely sure because the organisation had
9 altered fairly dramatically since my first battalion arrived.
10 Q. Major, I thank you very much for coming to The Hague and for this
12 MR. SCOTT: I have no further questions.
13 JUDGE LIU: Any cross-examination? Mr. Meek.
14 Cross-examined by Mr. Meek:
15 Q. Good morning, Major Rule.
16 A. Good morning.
17 Q. My name is Chris Meek, and I am one of the counsel for the accused
18 Mladen Naletilic. And I also speak English, so you and I will have to be
19 careful as Mr. Scott told you earlier in our questions and answers.
20 First, could you look at the document IAC-63 that is in the blue
21 handout, the binder.
22 A. Yes, I have it.
23 Q. You talked about on page 3 of that document under "Prozor." Have
24 you found that, sir?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Under paragraph 11.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And again, the five BDE. What does "BDE" mean again?
4 A. It is the -- it's the abbreviation for "brigade".
5 Q. Okay. The comment says, "This badge is new to the area and UI."
6 Can you enlighten us on what "UI" means?
7 A. I'm afraid I can't. That is possibly an abbreviation that fell
8 into use after I had left. I'm afraid I can't really help you with that.
9 It's not a -- not a recognised military abbreviation. Having said that,
10 clearly each theatre will throw up its own abbreviations. So I assume
11 that it is something which is unique to that theatre, but I'm afraid I
12 can't help you any more with that. Perhaps it's "unidentified", but I
13 don't know.
14 Q. Well, I was waiting for the transcription to finish. You answered
15 my next --
16 A. I'm terribly sorry. I should have done that.
17 Q. Please don't be sorry. While I was waiting for the translation to
18 finish, you answered my next question: Could that be "unidentified"?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. You mentioned in your testimony a colonel who you say that you met
21 on several occasions and you remembered by the name of Andrejevic?
22 A. Yes, yes. I'm not obviously sure of the precise spelling, but it
23 was a name very similar to that, Andrejevic or Andric.
24 Q. As I understand your testimony, clearly this Andrejevic person was
25 somebody who you understood to be from the HV?
1 A. Yes. It was an assessment that we made, and also through -- it
2 would have been underscored really by our own discussions -- discussions
3 with him, yes.
4 Q. You can't confirm that today, can you, sir?
5 A. No, I cannot confirm that.
6 Q. You spoke with him?
7 A. No. I spoke with him in quite some detail, because there was
8 serious fighting going on at the time. And clearly, it was my most
9 important responsibility to try and bring that fighting to a halt. And
10 this particular character, Andrejevic, was somebody who it was clear had
11 authority and somebody I needed to liaise with.
12 Q. So while it's clear that you felt he had some authority, what
13 you're telling us is you really can't tell us where that authority came
15 A. No, I would be unable to give you his detailed chain of command.
16 Q. Thank you for your candour.
17 Now, briefly, it is a fact, sir, that you were in the region of
18 Central Bosnia; Vitez, Prozor was your area, Gornji Vakuf.
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And you were there for approximately 91 days. Is that not
22 A. Exactly 91 days, yes.
23 Q. And exactly you left to move on to another station in January of
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. I believe the date was January 16th. Am I correct?
2 A. I believe -- I mean I think it was the 16th of January, but the
3 exact date is not something that I would have remembered.
4 Q. Okay. And if I understand your testimony right, Major Rule, when
5 you first came in on or about August -- excuse me, October, mid-October
6 1992, your duty was as a reconnaissance party. Is that correct?
7 A. The main body of the battalion did not arrive in Bosnia until the
8 beginning and into the middle of November. Clearly before then, we need
9 to carry out our own reconnaissance as we didn't know where we were going
10 to stay. So for the first period, until the main body of the battalion
11 turned up, my role would have been one of reconnaissance. Once the
12 battalion turned up and my own company turned up, the role would have
13 changed from one of reconnaissance to one of physically commanding my own
14 company and operating in the area that was assigned to me. So there would
15 have been a change once the main body of the battalion turned up.
16 Q. What was the size of the battalion, Major?
17 A. The size of the battalion was approximately -- the battalion
18 itself was approximately 600, but there would have been other units that
19 were attached to us. We had engineer squadrons. We had other smaller
20 agencies. So that probably would have taken the numbers up to I guess 750
21 to 800, something like that.
22 Q. And your company, how big was it?
23 A. My company, I had as well as my own company, I also had elements
24 of -- support elements with me. So physically under my command, I would
25 have had probably about 150 soldiers under my command.
1 Q. And of these 150 soldiers, were they broken up into smaller groups
2 when they would go out?
3 A. Yes. They would be broken up into platoon-size organisations. I
4 had three platoons generic to my own company, but I also had the
5 reconnaissance platoon as well attached to my company. So I would have
6 had four basic, I suppose, manoeuvre units, which I could deploy and which
7 would form the basis of my patrolling in the region.
8 Q. And were each of these platoons roughly the same size, or did they
9 vary in strength?
10 A. They would have been roughly the same size. The only slight
11 difference would have been the reconnaissance platoon, which was equipped
12 in a different way and equipped with different equipment.
13 Q. Did the reconnaissance platoon have a different objective than
14 your other platoons?
15 A. Normally, that would have been the case. But in this particular
16 scenario, it wasn't. All that it was able to do was give me the
17 flexibility to operate with different types of equipment. Our principal
18 equipment was the Warrior armoured fighting vehicle, which is very large
19 and very heavy and only suitable for certain areas. The reconnaissance
20 platoon was equipped with a much lighter reconnaissance vehicle known as
21 the Scimitar, which could go -- which was smaller, lighter, more agile and
22 could go in a lot of places that the Warrior perhaps couldn't go.
23 Q. You mentioned that one of your most important roles, in your
24 opinion, was the information gathering. Am I correct, sir?
25 A. Yes, I would say that that was probably key to our -- our being
1 able to operate successfully in the area.
2 Q. And did the reconnaissance platoon that you've just described,
3 were they -- were their objectives more towards gathering information than
4 your other platoons, or were all of your platoons equally seized with the
5 duty to gather information for you?
6 A. Well, yes, they were. In many respects, although we did have
7 tasks that were to physically escort convoys, many convoys did not require
8 escorting. So actually, I was given -- allowed me to deploy the platoons
9 on this information gathering -- gathering task. And it was an implied
10 task for us, that we had to be aware and create the atmosphere in the area
11 in which the convoys could pass freely. So the role would really be -- I
12 mean, if convoys didn't have to be physically escorted, then our larger
13 aim had been achieved because it meant that we had created the atmosphere
14 with which -- in which these convoys could move freely.
15 Q. The atmosphere that you were trying to create was between all
16 three warring factions, would that be a fair statement, or just the Croats
17 and the Muslims?
18 A. Well, we had no relationship with the Serbs. They did not operate
19 in the area. They were behind the front lines, which were -- they were
20 much closer to Bugojno, and I used to operate in Bugojno, but I had no
21 direct liaison with Serbs. So my liaison was principally with the BiH,
22 the Muslim community and the Croatian community.
23 Q. And I believe you've indicated in your testimony that one of the
24 things that you did was to set up a -- what you called an information
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Is that correct?
3 A. Correct, yes.
4 Q. And this was -- would this be a correct statement, that this would
5 be a cell which you created specifically to gather information on military
6 matters within the BH army and the HVO?
7 A. Yes. But it would have been more than that as well. It would
8 have reported anything significant, if it had not been directly military.
9 But anything politically at our level, it would be responsible also for,
10 for trying to pick that up, trying to evaluate it to a certain extent.
11 But the main role would be to collate, collate this information and pass
12 it up for others to evaluate at a higher level.
13 Q. And when you speak of collating the information that came in daily
14 from all of your units and every other - we'll talk about that in a
15 moment - but all of your units, for example, was this a group, for
16 example, that was designated to do nothing but collate the information at
17 the end of the day?
18 A. Yes. I would have had a team headed up by a colour sergeant. In
19 fact, I remember clearly who it was, Colour Sergeant Williams, who had had
20 previous experience doing this in previous operations which my battalion
21 had been involved in. So he would have had experience doing it. And also
22 he had specifically an NCO from the intelligence corps who are specialists
23 in this role, attached to my military information cell.
24 Q. You just mentioned that specifically an NCO. Would that be a
25 non-commissioned officer?
1 A. Non-commissioned officer, yes.
2 Q. And from the intelligence corps.
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And these are, in loose language, what a layperson might call
6 A. No, not at all. No, no, not at all. They're responsible in the
7 regular army for gaining information through various sources and providing
8 the expertise to advise commanders on what is happening around them.
9 Q. So those people, then, would have had some sort of background in
10 regards to the -- what had been happening on the ground in the past few
11 years, the history of the region politically and militarily? Would that
12 be fair?
13 A. Well, I think that would be overstating it. I mean, they probably
14 wouldn't have been following it in detail for several years beforehand.
15 But it would have been their job and they would have been trained as
16 professional intelligence soldiers to ensure that they were broadly aware
17 of the -- of the situation, both strategically and at the tactical level.
18 Q. And they all reported to you?
19 A. Yes, they did. They worked directly for me and indeed were --
20 well, I say "were" - there was one of them - was under my command.
21 The other elements of cell were soldiers found from the regiment.
22 But I'd just like to reiterate that -- and I will refer directly to our
23 experience in Northern Ireland. All British infantry battalions have done
24 numerous tours of duty in the province, and this -- this way of setting up
25 information-gathering cells is something that is -- is well known and
1 something which we would have done. And indeed Colour Sergeant Williams
2 had experience in previous operational deployments in doing precisely this
3 type of work.
4 Q. And did that experience and knowledge come from his involvement in
5 Northern Ireland? Is that what you're saying?
6 A. His -- in terms of setting up the cell and coming up with the
7 methods by which we gathered information, his experience would have been
8 of great value. Clearly his political experience and military experience
9 would have been of no value whatsoever.
10 Q. Again, that experience would go back to Northern Ireland, you
11 mentioned. Am I right or wrong?
12 A. Sorry, I'm not sure quite what you're getting at. I've said that
13 his experience in setting up and running an information-gathering cell
14 would have been gleaned from his experience in operating in Northern
15 Ireland. But in terms of his knowledge of the issue, his experience from
16 Northern Ireland would not give him any knowledge whatsoever of what was
17 happening in Central Bosnia.
18 Q. Oh, I understand that.
19 And in a previous answer, you said, "All British infantry
20 battalions have done numerous tours of duty in the province, and this way
21 of setting up information-gathering cells" -- that was right after you
22 talked about Northern Ireland.
23 A. Sure.
24 Q. So that was my question.
25 A. No, no. All I'm saying is that we would have been comfortable in
1 setting up information-gathering organisations and would have had set
2 routines to gather it and to collate it. And not only that. Our soldiers
3 are almost inculcated with the necessity to gather this information.
4 Q. And when you indicated in your direct testimony just now that all
5 of the soldiers, it was a necessity with them to gather this information,
6 that's something that you as a commander wanted them to do and ordered
7 them to do, I assume.
8 A. Yes, it was.
9 Q. Now, were you the one, the individual, Major, who would sign off
10 and approve these milinfosums before they went out in the evening?
11 A. I would -- I would read them. I would not necessarily always read
12 them. It would be Colour Sergeant Williams who was head of the
13 intelligence -- sorry, the information-gathering cell. He would have the
14 authority and the responsibility to be able to issue those without my
15 direct order.
16 Q. On the ones that you might have personally approved before they
17 went out, did you ever -- were you ever able to confirm information that
18 had been given to you as being confirmed?
19 A. Well, it really would have been the responsibility of the
20 intelligence cell to assess whether or not the information was confirmed
21 or not confirmed.
22 Q. So you took their word for it.
23 A. Well, yes. I mean, he was a -- you know, an experienced senior
24 NCO, and I would have no reason other than to take his word.
25 Q. The practice which you have described in setting up these
1 milinfosums, you indicated, had no precedence when you arrived in
2 mid-October 1992 in Central Bosnia. Is that correct?
3 A. Well, no, there weren't -- of course there weren't any precedents,
4 because we were the first battalion to arrive. So yes, there wouldn't
5 have been a precedent. But I'm not sure entirely how significant that
7 Q. Now, we know from your testimony that the system you set up and
8 the procedure, the standard practice, as you called it, was happening in
9 your area of command; correct?
10 A. Correct.
11 Q. As far as the other areas that you were not in command of, such as
12 other parts of Herzegovina, you can't give us any information today
13 absolutely, can you, that the same procedure was utilised?
14 A. I can confirm that within the BritBat area - so in the Vitez,
15 Travnik, Zenica, the areas for which the BritBat had responsibility - then
16 certainly that method would have been in use throughout the BritBat area.
17 Outside the BritBat area, I can't -- I cannot confirm that something
18 similar happened. So if it wasn't a Brit -- if the unit was not BritBat,
19 then I can't confirm that -- that it was taking place.
20 Q. And an example of that, I think, was given towards the end of your
21 testimony on your direct examination, I believe, if you'll look with me,
22 sir, Exhibit P783, the very last document in the blue binder you have in
23 front of you.
24 A. P783, yes.
25 Q. Yes. You've indicated that that was not originated by a BritBat
1 battalion. Am I correct, sir?
2 A. Well, it wasn't BritBat, but it is a British military summary. So
3 I can confirm that at a higher level -- which I believe Gornji Vakuf
4 took -- took a higher level headquarters into it, which was a British
5 headquarters. I would be -- I would be fairly happy to say that this is
6 a -- this is a genuine document. When I referred to anything that wasn't
7 BritBat, I meant whilst I was there at the time and also a unit from a
8 different army. This originates from a British unit and is certainly -- I
9 would be happy to confirm -- or in my opinion that this is a genuine
11 Q. And can you -- are you happy and comfortable in testifying that
12 the same procedures as you used back in late 1992 and the first 16 or 17
13 days of January 1993 was still an accepted practice in 1994, two years
15 A. Well, absolutely, absolutely. And more than that, they probably
16 have been refined and actually improved upon as time progressed. And, you
17 know, as I said before, we rely on the information, and this would have
18 been the key element of -- or a key element of us operating in that area.
19 Q. You mentioned in your direct testimony that you were somewhat --
20 or very surprised that the HVO communication system which you were able to
21 view on a certain occasion while you were in Bosnia.
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. What location exactly was that again? Was that in Gornji Vakuf?
24 A. In Gornji Vakuf. Immediately adjacent to our camp in Gornji Vakuf
25 was the HVO headquarters in another factory.
1 Q. Who was the commander of that HVO?
2 A. The commander of the HVO in Gornji Vakuf at the time was a
3 gentleman called Zrinko Tokic.
4 Q. Mr. Topic?
5 A. Tokic. T-o-k-i-c.
6 Q. I'm probably butchering this language like I shouldn't be.
7 A. Yes, I very clearly remember him. It was a man I met almost
8 daily, along with the BiH commander as well.
9 Q. You have no information or proof or evidence to this Trial Chamber
10 that the HVO contingent in southern Herzegovina or southwest Herzegovina
11 had the same or even similar communications capabilities at that time, do
13 A. No, not at all.
14 Q. In fact, may I ask you, have you ever been to Mostar?
15 A. I have, yes.
16 Q. Was it during your tour of duty?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And can you approximately tell me when it was within that 91 days
19 you were in Bosnia?
20 A. During the reconnaissance phase of the operation, I was given a
21 task to try and open up the route for the UNHCR north of Mostar up towards
22 Sarajevo, because it was such an important road and so much more aid
23 and -- could be got up it.
24 Q. So we would be talking about a time period --
25 A. October 1992, the end of October 1992. Around about late October
2 Q. Before your platoons actually came --
3 A. Yeah. No. This was a separate task which I was given in -- as
4 leader of the "reckie" party in conjunction with the UNHCR to try and
5 prove a route up through Mostar up into Central Bosnia.
6 Q. How long did you stay in Mostar, if you recall?
7 A. I was only there a day.
8 Q. Did you spend a full day in Mostar?
9 A. It would have been about seven or eight hours. I mean, I can
10 explain precisely what I did there if that would help.
11 Q. Please do.
12 A. We were trying to drive up the route to make sure that it was
13 clear, that it wasn't under any threat at all. We got to a roadblock, a
14 main roadblock which was on the main road on the -- on the main road out
15 of the city. And once we got there, we were prevented from passing
16 through the roadblock. And whilst I was trying to negotiate, I saw the
17 UNHCR car that was with me quickly drive off because he was a bit
18 concerned that this particular checkpoint was frequently shelled. We
19 weren't allowed through. We then went into Mostar, and we tried to
20 negotiate with the commander in -- with somebody. I can't remember
21 exactly who it was. I wasn't leading on the negotiations. It was the
22 UNHCR rep. To try and allow us free passage through. We eventually
23 didn't get that. I then had to find a more circuitous route to get up to
24 Vitez, and the UNHCR representative returned back to Split.
25 Q. You've probably already answered my next question, and that was
1 which commander or what commander did you speak with in Mostar?
2 A. I really don't recall. I really do not recall at all.
3 Q. And certainly nothing from your coming to testify in this Trial
4 Chamber today refreshes your recollection as to the name does it?
5 A. No.
6 Q. Who was manning this roadblock outside Mostar?
7 A. It was a soldier. An HVO soldier I would guess.
8 Q. You are guessing it was an HVO soldier?
9 A. Yeah --
10 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel and the witness be advised
11 that they are starting to speed up. Thank you.
12 A. I probably say it was more than a guess. It was a -- a valued
13 judgment. But I can't absolutely confirm.
14 MR. MEEK:
15 Q. We have both been warned, Major, so I'm trying to slow down a
16 little bit.
17 You testified in the Kordic case, did you not?
18 A. Yes, I did.
19 Q. And you were extensively questioned about the different uniforms
20 worn by the different factions in this war, were you not?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. If I recall your testimony correctly, you were very candid in
23 saying that it was very difficult to tell from a uniform alone what army a
24 certain soldier might be from. Is that a fair statement or not?
25 A. Yes. Yes, it's a fair statement. However, having said that,
1 broadly speaking, the various factions were -- did wear uniforms of a
2 uniform nature. We could make deductions and possibly even assumptions
3 through what uniform that was being made. But often at the edges, it was
4 a little bit difficult to identify people purely through the uniform.
5 Q. After your six or seven hours or so in Mostar that day, you then
6 went back to your headquarters?
7 A. No, I didn't go back. I was -- we had a very small party in Vitez
8 at the time, and so I had to find a cross-country route to get up to
9 Vitez. But the UNHCR person that was with me did return to Vitez --
10 wrong, to Split, I believe.
11 Q. When you say a small party, you don't mean like a birthday party,
12 do you?
13 A. No, I mean a small group of British soldiers.
14 Q. As far as the roadblocks go, and we're almost to -- a few more
15 questions before lunch. But on the roadblocks, you encountered those
16 during your 91 days in Central Bosnia more than once, I take it?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And you encountered roadblocks that were manned both sometimes by
19 HVO and sometimes by the ABiH army. Would that be correct, sir?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And you are familiar during your 91 days, from the middle of
22 October 1992 to the middle of January of 1993, that the ABiH army or units
23 thereof had, in fact, stolen humanitarian aid vehicles? Are you aware of
24 that, sir?
25 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Scott.
1 MR. SCOTT: Objection, Your Honour. Way beyond the scope of
2 direct examination. There was nothing about this, and it's irrelevant to
3 the purpose of this witness.
4 JUDGE LIU: We also believe that this issue was not mentioned
5 during the direct examination by the Prosecutor.
6 MR. MEEK: I think it's lunchtime. If it please the Court, I'll
7 find the documents after lunch. But thank you very much.
8 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Usher, would you please show the witness out of
9 the room first.
10 And we'll resume at 2.30 this afternoon.
11 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.59 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.30 p.m.
2 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Usher, please bring in the witness.
3 Yes, Mr. Meek. You may proceed.
4 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 Q. Good afternoon, Major. How are you?
6 A. I'm well. Thank you.
7 Q. I'd ask you if you would kindly look at the notebook handed to you
8 this morning, the document Exhibit P200.1, the very first document in this
9 bundle. This is a report, a milinfosum, number 45, from the Cheshire
10 group. That's your group; correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. 16th December 1992; correct?
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. And on page 2, it is mentioned -- you talk about HV troops, do you
16 A. Yes. Yes.
17 Q. On the second page, it says in this report: "This cell cannot
18 confirm the presence of HV troops north of Mostar." Do you see that?
19 A. Yes, I do. Yes.
20 Q. Is that true?
21 A. The cell which is being referred to is the battalion headquarters,
22 not my own cell, because this is the infosum which was generated by the
23 battalion headquarters as a result of mine. So they would have received
24 my information about that, and they would have attempted to confirm that
25 in an -- corroborate it in another way. And that is probably why they
1 have put that proviso in.
2 Q. And my question to you sir: Is it a fact and is it the truth that
3 this could not be confirmed by that cell?
4 A. That cell couldn't confirm it, but I would have had no reason to
5 doubt what they had seen -- what my soldiers had seen at that time.
6 Q. All right. Now, have you had occasion to study this situation
7 since you testified in the Kordic case?
8 A. No, I haven't.
9 Q. You were asked the same question in the Kordic case. And when you
10 were asked in that case "is that true," your answer was "absolutely, yes."
11 A. Yeah. At the time I may not have had this in front of me. I
12 think what I was attempting to explain there is why there was a little bit
13 of reticence from my own battalion headquarters.
14 MR. MEEK: Well, I'd ask the usher if he will help me and I can
15 show Major Rule a copy of the transcript from case number IT-95-14/2-T,
16 page 5461.
17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Scott.
18 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, I'm going to object. There's nothing
19 inconsistent about the witness's two answers. He said clearly in his
20 initial answer, "Yes, that is true. That cell, the battalion level cell
21 could not confirm it." He has said nothing inconsistent with that.
22 JUDGE LIU: Well, let us see what this witness said in that very
24 MR. MEEK:
25 Q. And Major Rule, I think about line 10 you'll see where the
1 questioning starts. And in fact I'll let you read it. But that record
2 indicates clearly you had this exhibit in front of you --
3 A. Okay.
4 Q. -- when you testified in the Kordic case, does it not, sir?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Okay.
7 A. Well, okay. I mean, what I was endeavouring to do is explain. I
8 mean, I still remain sure in my own mind that what my troops reported to
9 me was correct. But what I may have done there is try to explain the --
10 the less than totally firm approach which my battalion headquarters had
11 made. They obviously did not totally confirm what I was saying. But I
12 remain very much of the opinion that what my soldiers reported to me was
13 absolutely correct.
14 Q. And that -- what that report would have been is that it could
15 not -- you couldn't confirm the sightings.
16 A. Not me. My battalion headquarters could not confirm it. As far
17 as I was concerned, it was confirmed.
18 Q. Okay.
19 MR. MEEK: Could the usher hand me that back, please.
20 Q. And Major Rule, if these HV troops discussed in Exhibit P200.1
21 were, in fact, ever north of Mostar, can you tell me and tell the Trial
22 Chamber when it was they left?
23 A. I mean, no, we wouldn't have had -- we wouldn't have probably been
24 in a position to spot exactly the precise moment they would have pulled
1 Q. And just to make the record absolutely clear, you didn't -- you
2 didn't -- upon your arrival in Bosnia, you acquainted yourself, of course,
3 with the area of operations where you were working and the political
4 framework and military framework of the HVO. Correct?
5 A. I would have broadly been aware of the structure, but not in any
6 detail, no.
7 Q. That would have been for your area of responsibility?
8 A. Well, no. It wouldn't have been. We would have clearly have
9 had -- I mean, there were lots of things going on outside, like agreements
10 being made outside which would have had an impact on what was happening in
11 Gornji Vakuf. So it was incumbent on us not only to follow closely the
12 local situation but also be aware of the international situation as well.
13 And we would have got that mostly through the media.
14 Q. Would it be a fair statement, then, that much of your briefing, so
15 to speak, came from media reports?
16 A. I don't quite know what you mean by -- I mean, our awareness of
17 the broad international situation, the majority of it would have come
18 through the media. Clearly, the local situation would have been
20 Q. And what weight, if any, did you give to the information that you
21 were gaining from the media?
22 A. Well, it what depends you are talking about. I mean, in the early
23 days before we managed to get satellite television and things like that,
24 all our international awareness was got through the BBC World service.
25 Q. During your time in the area of your responsibility for the
1 91 days you were in Bosnia, was it only one occasion that you came upon
2 mujahedin fighters for the BH army?
3 A. I personally only came across them once, yes.
4 Q. Can you tell us, tell me, please, and the Trial Chamber,
5 approximately how many other occasions that your people talked to you
6 about sightings of mujahedin --
7 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Scott.
8 MR. SCOTT: Object to beyond the scope of direct, and object to
10 JUDGE LIU: We also believe that this subject is beyond the scope
11 of the direct examination, but we are interested to hear the answer from
12 this witness. You may answer the question.
13 A. I personally came across them once. I can't categorically say
14 that my soldiers never came across them; but certainly if they did, it was
15 very infrequent. But I don't recall specifically, once after I had seen
16 them -- and it wasn't in my area. It was in -- it was up in the Vitez
17 area that I had seen them. That my soldiers came across them, although I
18 might be wrong. But I can't remember them ever coming across mujahedin.
19 Q. You apparently had the unfortunate experience of to actually come
20 face to face with some mujahedin fighters?
21 A. Yes, I did.
22 Q. Could you explain, then, to the Trial Chamber what happened?
23 A. It was literally the third day of our reconnaissance party. I was
24 accompanying Lieutenant-Colonel Bob Stewart. There had been quite a lot
25 of trouble, and I had passed through a quite awkward situation when I left
1 Gornji Vakuf to rejoin the main body reconnaissance party that was in
2 Vitez. There was a lot of fighting going on. We had gone into the town
3 of Vitez to try and speak to local commanders to find out what was
4 happening and if there was anything we could do to sort that situation
6 When we returned back to the school at Vitez, during our time in
7 the morning, the tensions had actually increased quite markedly, and there
8 were a lot more roadblocks out when we returned to the school, which is
9 where we had based ourselves on the way back. And one of the roadblocks
10 was manned by mujahedin, in fact very close to where the school was. And
11 they had blocked the road with a bus, and there were anti-tank mines in
12 the road. And they weren't going to let us through.
13 But after Colonel Stewart had remonstrated with the people on the
14 checkpoint, he moved the bus out of the way, pulled the mines to one side,
15 and we drove through back to the school. And that was the only time I
16 personally came across mujahedin. And when I say mujahedin, they were
17 wearing the classic mujahedin clothes, the hat, the clothes that we would
18 normally associate with mujahedin fighters.
19 Q. As far as their features go, can you describe the features of
20 the --
21 A. I would say -- I mean, certainly to me at the time, I was very
22 clear in my own mind that these were mujahedins. So I would have said
23 they were of a Middle-Eastern appearance.
24 Q. You spoke in your direct testimony, Major, about the fact that one
25 of your primary responsibilities was creating an atmosphere that you could
1 work with both the Croats or the HVO and the Muslims or the BH army.
3 A. Absolutely correct, yeah.
4 Q. You listened to complaints and requests from both sides. Did you
6 A. Yes, I did.
7 Q. Isn't it a fair statement and would you agree with me when I say
8 that one of the concerns of the HVO or the Croats were mujahedin
9 influences coming in from the middle east?
10 A. Yes. I vaguely recall that being, but I can't remember it as
11 being a particular issue in Gornji Vakuf. But there may have been a
12 concern, yes.
13 Q. It went a little bit further than just the mujahedin soldiers
14 there on the ground, but also the financial support and military or
15 weapons support coming from the Middle East also, monetarily and
16 otherwise. Correct?
17 A. Yeah. I mean we weren't aware certainly at that stage of any
18 particular evidence that there was -- that this was happening. But you
19 know, clearly, we would have been aware that somebody must have been
20 supplying weapons and ammunition.
21 Q. Speaking of agreements, you just testified that part of your
22 duties were to keep abreast of the different agreements that were floating
23 around or being negotiated. Correct?
24 A. On the international side. I mean, when I say it was part of my
25 brief, as a professional soldier, I needed to be aware of international
1 events that could influence the local situation.
2 Q. Are you aware of the Split agreement, the agreement that's called
3 the "Split Agreement"?
4 A. Not specifically, no.
5 Q. Were you aware of an agreement which was reached between the BiH
6 army and Croatia -- the BiH Republic, excuse me, and Croatia regarding the
7 allowance of HV troops in Bosnia-Herzegovina in the war against the Serbs?
8 A. Again, I may well have been, but at this stage, I can't -- ten
9 years on, I can't remember specific agreements. What I do remember is
10 that there were a number of agreements both within the former Republic of
11 Yugoslavia, the area of the former Republic of Yugoslavia, and also
12 outside as well. I know that there were international negotiations going
13 on I think in Geneva as well, which we were also monitoring.
14 Q. In the spirit of that agreement, assuming that it is correct that
15 the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina had allowed HV troops during the
16 conflict with the Serbs in 1992, the end of 1992, in December, November --
17 A. December, yeah.
18 Q. It's a possibility, is it not, that any HV troops that may have
19 been seen could have been present due to that agreement?
20 A. It is possible.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 A. But, you know, at the time, we were aware of increasing tension,
23 and our -- and our evaluation, our comment on it was that it was possibly
24 more to do with what was happening in Gornji Vakuf and what was happening
25 on front lines elsewhere.
1 Q. Major Rule, can you this long and this many years after the events
2 that you are here to testify about, can you describe the HVO
4 A. Well, you know, I mean -- I mean, that's a pretty broad question.
5 MR. SCOTT: Which organisation? What does that mean? I object to
6 the form of the question.
7 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Mr. Meek, you have to be more specific.
8 MR. MEEK:
9 Q. The military organisation of the HVO.
10 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me. At what level? In Gornji Vakuf? In
11 Mostar? Herceg-Bosna? What are we talking about?
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
13 MR. MEEK: I'll rephrase the question.
14 Q. Major Rule, did you understand my question?
15 A. Yeah. It's -- it was originally a pretty broad question, and one
16 didn't quite know where to start.
17 I personally was aware broadly of the zones of operation which the
18 HVO operated in and broadly the chain of command into which the
19 organisation that I was specifically interested in, which was the -- which
20 was the HVO brigade in Gornji Vakuf -- where their lines of communication
21 were two. And there were certainly two centres, and one was Mostar and
22 the other was Tomislavgrad. And yes, we were at the time broadly aware.
23 I wouldn't have been aware of specific commanders at a higher level.
24 Q. Nor would you be able to describe that to us today.
25 A. No.
1 Q. Okay.
2 A. Certainly not today, unfortunately.
3 Q. Okay. You have testified almost in the very beginning of your
4 direct examination, I believe, almost 26 years you've been in the British
5 military. Correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And you are then acquainted with the British military system, as
8 well as other countries' military systems.
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And NATO perhaps; correct?
11 A. Yes. Yeah.
12 Q. Can you give us some sort of example -- or not example. But how
13 would you rate the HVO military structure in comparison to the British
14 military structure?
15 A. Well, I mean, it was different. But I've already alluded to the
16 fact that -- I mean, initially we felt that it was -- it was a -- an
17 organisation when we first got there which did lack some structure. But
18 we were constantly surprised at -- once we got into a more experienced and
19 saw things more clearly -- that the extent of the organisation that there
20 was -- and again, I refer you back to the -- the various communications
21 which I'd seen and the sort of direct links that I had witnessed, you
22 know, in the communications centres and the like. I mean, it surprised us
23 just how good that communication was.
24 Q. And when you speak about being more constantly surprised and as
25 you got more experienced, you saw things more clearly, you're still
1 speaking, are you not, of your area of command?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Which was Central Bosnia?
4 A. It was Central Bosnia.
5 Q. Certainly not Herzegovina or Mostar or South-West Herzegovina.
6 A. No. Day to day, no. I mean, I probably had -- I had experience
7 as far as down to Jablanica, which was where the Spanish Battalion was.
8 And it was incumbent on me to ensure that my liaison with that unit was
9 relatively close.
10 Q. Speaking of the Spanish Battalion, I'd ask you to look at the last
11 document -- I believe it's the last document, Major. Exhibit P783, I
12 think it is. Excuse me, IAC-26. It should be -- Major, it should be the
13 second document in the binder. In the bottom right-hand corner you'll see
15 A. Okay. Got it.
16 Q. And then I'll refer you -- if you just turn that over to page 3,
17 for example -- excuse me, page 2, under paragraph 3, "Vitez," about three
18 quarters of the way down you have "Comment:". Do you see that?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. We had in this case a military man who testified under a pseudonym
21 JJ from --
22 A. Sorry, can I just confirm I've got precisely the right place.
23 Q. Sure.
24 A. What is the first sentence?
25 Q. It's "Comment:". It says: "It appears strange."
1 A. Sorry, I'm not there.
2 Q. I'm sorry. If you go down to 4, "Tuzla." Move up about one, two,
3 three, four lines.
4 A. I think I might be on the wrong page. Tuzla? Okay, right.
5 Tuzla. Okay. Above "Tuzla."
6 Q. Yes, sir. And it's -- it's just that comment. I don't want you
7 to read it necessarily. You can. Certainly help yourself. My question
8 won't be about the comment itself.
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. My question will be this: We had a military intelligence officer
11 from the Spanish Battalion testify in this courtroom, and he testified
12 that in his reports, in the reports generated by SpaBat, that there's a
13 grading structure for whether or not information had been verified. Sort
14 of like being in school and getting a grade of A, B, C, D, or E.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And his testimony was - and I want to know whether you agree with
17 it - that in all of the SpaBat reports, the comment sections were
18 absolutely pretty much no credibility given to them because they were
19 merely comments.
20 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President.
21 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
22 MR. SCOTT: [Microphone not activated]
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, counsel.
24 MR. SCOTT: This is an arrangement of documents which are not in
25 front of this witness, and this witness can't possibly comment on that.
1 JUDGE CLARK: And in addition, I don't believe the witness said
2 that. He said -- "Comment:" was at a higher level and -- of intelligence.
3 After he'd prepared his reports, they went to somebody, and that person
4 was able to comment on the -- his assessment of the information.
5 "Comment" did not mean it was information. It was a personal assessment
6 on the information. But he did tell us how they arrived at giving the A,
7 B, C, D, E, which was different, because I questioned him on that.
8 MR. MEEK: Yeah, actually, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. But it was my
9 understanding from that testimony, Your Honours, that the comments were
10 not to be given weight. They were just surmises or speculation on the
11 part --
12 JUDGE CLARK: The comments came from military officers and not
13 from field assessors.
14 MR. MEEK: Okay. So thank you, Your Honours. Thank you again.
15 Q. The question: How did these comments come about from BritBat?
16 A. Well, first, going back to -- I mean, I cannot comment on what the
17 SpaBat did, because I just have no idea what they did. This would have
18 been comment at the battalion level by a cell which was considerably
19 larger than my own and which did have other higher ranking intelligence
20 corps officers attached to it. So it is a comment that would have carried
21 credence, a certain amount of weight, certainly, when it continued up the
22 line to a higher formation.
23 Q. Your answer to that question leads me to another question. Are
24 you saying, then, that your unit may have had a lower intelligence ranking
25 than other groups and therefore the information that came through your
1 BritBat reports are not as credible as some other units, such as the one
2 who may have --
3 A. No. No. I wasn't -- I mean, you'll be aware of the military
4 chain of command that the smaller the unit is, the lower the level.
5 Having said that, that doesn't mean to say that professionally that there
6 are any less able than those higher. They just happen to be lower ranks.
7 Because, you know, you can't -- you can't have certain rank structure
8 which goes all the way down. I mean, that's not the whole aim of it. But
9 certainly within the British system, responsibility is allocated to -- and
10 perhaps this is slightly different from our army than to other armies --
11 is that responsibly -- responsibility is relaid at lower level. It's
12 accepted, and it's reported. And certainly our junior commanders have far
13 more responsibility and independence of action than perhaps some other
14 armies might have.
15 Q. Thank you. Major, you spoke about your personal experience with
16 HV troops. And I believe you indicated that in early January of 1993,
17 your patrol spotted what they thought was HVO -- HV regular troops.
18 A. Not -- it wouldn't have been my patrol. It would have been a
19 patrol from my company.
20 Q. Okay. And --
21 A. Because I certainly didn't personally see it myself.
22 Q. And your testimony was the troops thought they were HV regulars.
23 So that was never --
24 A. Well, my troops -- I mean, precisely. I mean, short of capturing
25 one of the troops and interrogating him and finding out. You know, it
1 will always be an assessment.
2 Q. Exactly.
3 A. But the assessment is based on a number of factors which led us to
4 believe that yes, they were HV troops.
5 Q. You also indicated, I believe, that you had spotted a number of
6 command vehicles reported to you to be HV command vehicles.
7 A. I'm not sure I said "HV command vehicles." They were vehicles of
8 a type which we were well aware of which would carry communication systems
9 which were far higher level communication systems than would normally be
10 expected at the tactical level, i.e., at -- you know, within our area.
11 These were more strategic level communications.
12 Q. So Major, then, it would be -- would I be correct when I state
13 that these vehicles didn't have "HV" written on the side of them?
14 A. I don't know. I mean, if they had, my soldiers probably would
15 have reported that fact.
16 Q. So your soldiers didn't reach the conclusion because they hadn't
17 seen these type of vehicles very frequently.
18 A. Well, no. I mean, we have -- we have a book of all the different
19 types of vehicles. We were well aware of the vehicles that were used by
20 the regular army of the former Yugoslav republic. We would have been able
21 to fairly definitely assess the level and the type of communications
22 equipment which a particular vehicle would have held. And not only that,
23 a soldier would have been able to have referred to an aid memoire so that
24 he could compare the vehicle which he saw with the vehicle that the
25 photograph was in front of him.
1 Q. You just mentioned the aid memoir again. Is this the booklet you
2 are referring to?
3 A. This is a booklet which we were all issued with which I'm sure has
4 been upgraded since. But it had a large number of different types of
5 vehicles which we could expect possibly to see during our tour. And in
6 addition, we had badges of the various factions and the like.
7 Q. So, Major, the book you're just speaking about, the aid memoir,
8 which had the pictures of the different vehicles and uniforms, correct?
9 A. Yes, yeah, I think so. But you know.
10 Q. Do you recall what the difference was between an HV uniform and an
11 HVO uniform?
12 A. I cannot -- you're talking about -- you're referring to individual
13 pages in a booklet which was about 50 pages long which I last saw ten
14 years ago, so it's very difficult for me.
15 Q. I appreciate that. I can appreciate this. So let's do this:
16 Let's forget the book, because you were in the field for 91 days. Explain
17 to me and the Trial Chamber what was the difference between the HVO
18 uniform and the HV uniform, if you know?
19 A. I mean, I don't think we ever referred to the fact there was a
20 specific difference between the style of uniform. I think what we were
21 saying in the infosum was that there was clearly a difference in the way a
22 regular soldier wears his uniform -- and being a regular soldier, and
23 being in a number of theaters, there is a clear difference between the way
24 a regular soldier wears his uniform and the way a nonregular soldier wears
25 his uniform. There is a difference in neatness, smartness, uniformity,
1 equipment. And that is an impression which my soldiers on the ground
2 gained. And again, like all of these things, these were deductions but
3 they were based on firm -- you know, a firm impression gained by those
4 soldiers on the ground.
5 Q. So if I understand you correctly, then, the basis -- one of the
6 bases, if not perhaps the only basis, to tell the difference between an HV
7 soldier and an HVO soldier is the HVO soldier would be sloppily dressed
8 whereas the HV soldier would be smartly dressed but had the same uniform?
9 Would that be a fair statement?
10 A. It's a fair statement. But in this case, it wasn't just the
11 uniform. In fact, it was probably the Tiger badges that they were wearing
12 which brought them to that conclusion. And you know, this is an
13 impression which a professional soldier will pick up and identify very
15 Q. Would you look back then for me -- can you look back, please, to
16 the Exhibit 200.1, the very first one in your book. And it will be
17 page 2. That talks about a Tiger's badge on the left sleeve. It goes on
18 to say --
19 JUDGE CLARK: Which page is this?
20 MR. MEEK: I'm sorry, page 2. It's only a two-page document.
21 200.1, I'm sorry. It's the very first document, Judge Clark.
22 Q. Goes on to say that "This badge has not been noted in the 1st
23 Cheshire TAOR".
24 A. Yes, that stands for "Territorial Area of Responsibility".
25 Q. And is normally associated with the 1st Tiger Brigade.
1 A. Yeah.
2 Q. Does this mean that this was the first time that the 1st Cheshire
3 Brigade had ever come across a badge they believed to be a Tiger badge?
4 A. Yeah.
5 Q. That's what it means?
6 A. Yeah, and that's what it says there.
7 Q. Okay. Major, I'm going -- since you were on the ground for
8 91 days in Central Bosnia, I must ask you if you can describe to us, to me
9 and for the Trial Chamber, the difference between an HVO soldier and a
10 soldier from the ABiH army?
11 A. Well, the uniform that the HVO wore was generally the U.S. pattern
12 DPM. It was similar to the U.S. pattern disruptive pattern material.
13 Q. Is that like camouflage?
14 A. Well, that's a generic term, camouflage. Disrupted pattern
15 material is the term that you refer to on the combat uniform. This was
16 markedly different. BiH soldiers wore a different style of DPM,
17 disruptive pattern material. And you will see this in armies throughout
18 NATO. There are a number of different types, colourings of DPM material.
19 And broadly speaking. And again, there would have been a little bit of
20 crossover. You know, sometimes somebody would have put another jacket
21 on. But broadly speaking, the BiH wore a different pattern from the
22 Croats, from the HVO.
23 Q. Both, again --
24 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Meek, as well as Mr. Witness, I have to
25 remind you that you are giving a very difficult time to the interpreters.
1 We all rely on the interpretations. Please slow down.
2 MR. MEEK: When I was a child, my mother told me to slow down,
3 Your Honour.
4 Q. So basically, Major, both the soldiers with the HVO and the ABiH
5 wore what you call generically camouflage uniforms. Correct?
6 A. BiH, broadly speaking, yes. But these were irregular troops, and
7 there was no sergeant major in the morning drilling them on parade and
8 telling them off for having dirty boots or anything like that.
9 Q. We've got to try to help the interpreters, and I'm about
10 finished. The fabric was different, the colour was different, or the
11 shading was different?
12 A. Both. I mean, all of those things. It's difficult -- and I'm
13 sure it would be very simple to show the two styles of uniform. But the
14 British DPM is different from the American DPM, which is different from
15 the German DPM, in the same way the HVO DPM was different from the BiH
16 DPM. The HVO DPM was broadly of the United States pattern. BiH DPM,
17 disruptive pattern material, was broadly of an Eastern European style. It
18 was slightly darker. And the pattern, the disruptive pattern, was
19 different. And you could see at some distance the difference between the
21 Q. Major - and you have been in the army a long time - but when you
22 got to Bosnia, did it take you a little while to tell the difference being
23 a military man?
24 A. Well, when -- a little while, I mean a couple of days. The point
25 was that clearly, at the very beginning, this was a new operation, and
1 everybody was learning and learning very quickly. But it certainly
2 wouldn't have taken us very long to be able to make the differentiation.
3 And to underline that, I had been -- for example, I had been to Bugojno,
4 which was in my area of responsibility, and they were fighting a
5 particularly bitter struggle with the Serbs at the time in that area. And
6 the two, at the time, the BiH and the Croat Brigades were fighting
7 alongside each other. And certainly when we spoke to the two different
8 types, that was where it very early on became clear that they wore two
9 different styles of uniform.
10 Q. One final question, Major - thank you for your patience - during
11 the combat in Bosnia, you were aware, were you not, that both the HVO and
12 the ABiH army were able to buy on the open market the uniforms and that
13 they could purchase uniforms from different countries and would do so?
14 A. Of course, and I think I already made the point that it wasn't a
15 hundred percent uniform. But broadly speaking, there was a particular
16 style of uniform that was worn. But clearly, as you say, uniforms were
17 purchased from Germany, were purchased from surplus stores around Europe,
18 and they were also worn as well. So it's not a hard and fast rule.
19 Q. And you still stand by your earlier testimony that it was
20 difficult to tell apart the combatants at times because of the uniform
22 A. Yes. But, you know, it wasn't -- it wasn't in our -- for us, we
23 were trying to make -- an accurate -- we were on nobody's side. We were
24 just trying to get an accurate picture of what was happening. And so, you
25 know, those deductions were - I would say, and still say - were fairly
1 sound, yes.
2 Q. One final question, Major: The middle Bosnia area where you
3 served your tour of duty, was it not surrounded by Serbs and Muslims? The
4 Croats living in that area, was it surrounded by Serbs and Muslims?
5 A. There was -- I mean, we were aware of the broad breakdown of
6 ethnic groupings in the Gornji Vakuf area. When you say -- you give a
7 slightly wrong impression by your statement. And one of the great
8 frustrations to me personally was the fact that when I first arrived,
9 there was a lot of -- there was a very firm alliance between the people in
10 that area against the common foe, and that was the Serb at the time, both
11 in Bugojno and in Gornji Vakuf. Those forces were fighting side by side
12 at that stage. And at the local level, the -- the coordination between
13 the two sides was a very high level.
14 So to say that the Croats were surrounded by Muslims and Serbs
15 creates the wrong impression. They were -- both communities were under
16 threat from the Serb at the time. So that was the impression that we
17 got. And there was -- although the Croatian community in Gornji Vakuf was
18 a minority, it wasn't an enormous minority. They were slightly smaller
19 but not greatly so in Gornji Vakuf.
20 MR. MEEK: Major Rule, thank you very much. Have a safe trip
22 JUDGE LIU: Any cross-examination, Mr. Par.
23 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] Very briefly, Your Honours.
24 Cross-examined by Mr. Par:
25 Q. [Interpretation] Just some clarification in regards of one
2 Good afternoon, Major. My name is Mr. Zelimir Par, and I am one
3 of the Defence attorneys for the accused Vinko Martinovic. I'm going to
4 ask you some questions about a document that you had mentioned several
5 times. I may not have fully understood everything, so please bear with me
6 if I go and repeat certain things.
7 This is P783. It is the last one in this clutch of documents.
8 And my colleague has referred to it several times. And I'll tell you what
9 I did not understand about this document. I did not understand what you
10 authenticated in this document. Who is actually the author of this
12 A. Again, because this is, you know, well after my experience, the
13 organisation of our forces in Central Bosnia changed, and so I am
14 unfamiliar with the originator of this particular document. What I can
15 say is that it is a British headquarters which subsequently took command
16 of that area. And I'm afraid that is all I can say. I can certainly see
17 that it was initiated from a British headquarters because of the style and
18 the layout of the document.
19 Q. Very well. Now, this entire document, which contains information
20 received from these other battalions, was drafted or compiled by the
21 British military authorities. Did I understand you correctly to have said
22 that these other battalions were sending in reports to the headquarters;
23 and on the basis of those reports, the headquarters, then, compiled this
25 A. Yes. Yes. Having never seen this document before, and having
1 looked through it now, I can see that there are replies from TurkBat, from
2 CanBat. And if they are reporting back to those headquarters, those
3 organisations would have been under command of that headquarters. Now,
4 each information summary which would have come from those battalions would
5 have been taken -- they would not have verbatim been taken into this
6 document. The key elements as deduced by these headquarters would have
7 been extrapolated and put into this document for onward transmission.
8 Q. Do you know whether this type of information which was coming from
9 different battalions were verified in any way, or were they simply just
10 straight forwardly put into the report, or was there any filter, so to
12 A. There would have been a filter, in terms of verifying
13 information. If it had been an information of particular importance, then
14 I would -- I would think that there certainly would have been an attempt
15 to verify it, if it was a key item of information.
16 Q. Looking at this specific document -- and you are here giving
17 evidence as somebody who can authenticate this document. On the basis of
18 everything that you have told me so far, this would be - how shall I put
19 it? - an assumption or maybe an explanation of a regular pattern of
20 drafting these reports. Now, do you have any specific knowledge about
21 these specific documents, or does it simply follow the pattern that you're
22 familiar with, of how these reports should have been done?
23 A. I have no specific -- I mean, I've never seen this document
24 before, you know. I don't know it. As I say, it is -- it is familiar.
25 Another thing I would say is that where somebody is commenting on
1 something that they have seen, then it is clearly highlighted as a comment
2 and not as a specific fact which had been witnessed on the ground by -- by
4 Q. So let me try to be as direct as I can. Are you in a position or
5 are you the right person who could authenticate this document to us, or is
6 this document slightly different from the other documents that you
7 discussed here today?
8 A. It is different, because it's initiated at a higher level. I was
9 only involved in documents that were produced at unit level, at our
10 battalion level. I never worked at a brigade level, which is probably
11 what this roughly equates to, in Gornji Vakuf or during my tour of duty
13 Q. Thank you very much, Major. I have no further questions of you.
14 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] And this concludes my
15 cross-examination. Thank you.
16 JUDGE LIU: Any re-examination, Mr. Scott?
17 MR. SCOTT: No, Your Honour. Thank you.
18 Questioned by the Court:
19 JUDGE CLARK: I just thought, Major, that we owed it to you to
20 explain why it was necessary for you to come in relation to these
21 documents. We were concerned that they had no apparent visible provenance
22 on them, they had no signature, and they had no stamp from an army base.
23 I think I see your explanations, communications were difficult. And the
24 documents probably went by telex, did they?
25 A. Absolutely. It would have been impractical to have them
1 personally signed and sent. These would have initially used fax in the
2 early days and then telex and, you know, other electronic media.
3 JUDGE CLARK: Yes. You see the documents that we had seen from
4 the other battalions were faxed and obviously were on official paper. And
5 that's why we were concerned. But you've resolved our concerns.
6 Major, there was just one very, very short question. You may not
7 be able to answer this. You may not be able to assist. But perhaps you
8 can. At least one witness, possibly two witnesses, have given evidence in
9 the past of being asked to bury bodies. And these witnesses were
10 prisoners, and therefore communications with the people giving orders
11 would have been, to say the least, limited. And they noticed that
12 sometimes when they were burying bodies, that the bodies wore boots of an
13 exceptionally high quality, totally different, they said, from the boots
14 they were used to. And they identified those boots as being on the bodies
15 of Croatian army soldiers, in other words, HV soldiers. Do you have any
16 comment at all about the footwear between HV soldiers and HVO and, of
17 course, Armija?
18 A. I don't recall. I don't recall anything. Anything I say would
19 just -- be just conjecture, other than many of these people had access to
20 Germany and clearly would have been able to get hold of items or equipment
21 that might make -- might have made their life a bit more comfortable,
22 i.e., they were warmer and -- but specifically, I can't recall anything
23 specifically about boots in my time there.
24 JUDGE CLARK: Thank you very much.
25 JUDGE LIU: Any questions out of Judge's question?
1 Yes, Mr. Meek.
2 MR. MEEK: None, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
4 Thank you very much, Witness, for coming here to help us. We all
5 wish you a pleasant trip back.
6 THE WITNESS: Thank you very much.
7 JUDGE LIU: The usher will show you out of the room.
8 [The witness withdrew]
9 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Scott, are there any documents you are going to
10 tender at this stage?
11 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour. Mr. President, we would tender --
12 and I'm going to because of the Court's prior questions, which I
13 appreciate -- I'm going to tender the -- some of the documents again, just
14 to make sure that on the basis of this additional evidence, the record
15 will be clear that they've been tendered. We tender P200.1, P208.1,
16 IAC-26, P216.1, IAC-63, IAC-66, IAC-75, P364, and P783.
17 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. I believe all those documents have been
18 tendered before but pending a decision from this Trial Chamber.
19 Are there any objections? Mr. Par.
20 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] The Defence of Vinko Martinovic opposes
21 the P783 being entered in evidence because we believe that this witness is
22 not the right kind of witness to authorise -- to authenticate this type of
23 document. We cannot see how -- who actually authored this document, how
24 it was compiled. All he was able to say about this document were
25 conjectures, assumptions. And also it was an extemporaneous document. In
1 other words, it was not compiled at the time when he was there on duty.
2 And since the -- and this will be our objection. In case that the Defence
3 of the first accused has objections to other document, we would second
4 their objection.
5 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.
6 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, I believe that the Defence
7 for Mladen Naletilic has previously filed objections to these documents,
8 which we would reiterate. We believe they're outside the scope of the
9 indictment. And specifically on Exhibit P783, this was a document
10 generated in August of 1994, seven months or more after the time of this
11 indictment. I want to point that specifically out to the Court. But I
12 believe that we have heretofore entered written objections to those
13 documents. We would reiterate those same objections. Thank you.
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE LIU: Well, after consultations among the Judges, we have
16 made a decision on the admission of those evidence. Since all those
17 documents have been tendered before, and since we have been seized by the
18 motion filed by the Defence counsel objecting the admission of these
19 documents, we would like to say that all these documents have been
20 admitted into the evidence except that document P783. We believe that
21 this document is not in the same category with the other documents.
22 It is so decided.
23 Yes, Mr. Scott. Do you have another witness?
24 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour. We'd like to call the next
25 witness. And it will be protected -- it will be a protected witness, so I
1 won't be in a position -- perhaps we can go into private session.
2 JUDGE LIU: Yes, we'll go to the private session, please.
3 [Private session]
9 [Open session]
10 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please bring in the Witness, Mr. Usher.
11 [The witness entered court]
12 JUDGE LIU: Good afternoon, Witness.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't understand.
14 JUDGE LIU: It is a test. Good afternoon, Witness.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
16 JUDGE LIU: Would you please make the solemn declaration in
17 accordance with the paper the usher is showing to you.
18 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
19 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
20 JUDGE LIU: Sit down, please.
21 WITNESS: WITNESS AD
22 [Witness answered through interpreter]
23 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Scott.
24 Examined by Mr. Scott:
25 Q. Good afternoon, Witness. Witness, I'm not using your name because
1 the protective measures that you have requested have been granted, and
2 that is you are testifying using a pseudonym instead of your true name,
3 and your facial image is being protected. Therefore, we need to make a
4 record of the person that, in fact, you are. And in order to do that, a
5 name has been put on a paper that the usher is showing you now. And I
6 want to start by asking you -- don't say your name. But if you look at
7 the paper, you can just say "yes" or "no", is that your name?
8 A. Yes, it is.
9 Q. Very well. Thank you. In connection with your protective
10 measures, Witness AD, let me just say again -- and let me indicate, when I
11 say "Witness AD", that is the pseudonym that has been assigned to you. It
12 will be important in the course of your testimony if you can try to
13 remember not to mention family names or information which might tend to
14 identify you. If there's a need for that, or a name or some other detail,
15 we will try to go into private session so that you can say -- give answers
16 to those questions in a way that no one outside the courtroom will be able
17 to hear that information.
18 Do you understand that?
19 A. I do.
20 Q. And finally, Witness AD, I want to say personally before we start,
21 I apologise for the long delay in having you come into the courtroom.
22 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, I would like to start, please, with
23 some background identification, if we could go into private session for
24 the next few minutes.
25 JUDGE LIU: We'll go to the private session, please.
1 [Private session]
6 [Open session]
7 MR. SCOTT:
8 Q. Witness AD, can you tell the Chamber, please, on the 9th of May,
9 1993, at about 5.00 in the morning, were you in your flat with your family
10 when the HVO attacked Mostar?
11 A. Yes, that is correct.
12 Q. Can you tell the Chamber whether you were surprised at this
13 attack, or did you have any sort of information or impression that this
14 attack was coming?
15 A. Oh, I was quite taken by surprise.
16 Q. And what did you see or what did you hear or see happening, very
17 briefly? Because I will tell you that the Chamber has heard a fair amount
18 of evidence on this point. But from your personal perspective, what could
19 you see and hear going on around you on the 9th and 10th of May, 1993?
20 A. It was in the morning at 20 to 5.00, from the hill of Hum above
21 Mostar, they opened fire. I looked through the window, and I could see
22 that the streets were awash with people, Muslims were en masse expelled
23 from their flats, and they took them to the Velez stadium.
24 Q. Did any HVO soldiers come to your flat on the 9th of May, 1993?
25 A. Yes. At 7.00, he came and took my husband and my two sons away.
1 But then he recognised him and brought him back again so that they stayed
2 in the flat until 12.00 on the 10th of May.
3 Q. All right. So just so your evidence is clear, because it seemed
4 to indicate initially your husband and sons were taken away but then they
5 were brought back. Can you just perhaps be a bit clearer on what happened
6 in that regard?
7 A. I suppose somebody recognised my husband. I mean one of those
8 soldiers must have recognised my husband, because my sons had already come
9 down the stairs. And they asked my husband, "Who is this"? And he said,
10 "These are my two sons". And they came back then, and nobody came to our
11 apartment again until 12.00 the next day, the 10th of May.
12 Q. All right, and that's what I wanted to go to next, please. At
13 approximately 12.00 the next day, on the 10th of May, what happened?
14 A. Like this: At 12.00 on the 10th of May, Danko Carapina in a black
15 uniform came to the door. He said to my husband to follow him. I was in
16 the doorway of our living room, and he ordered me to get back into the
17 living room and told me that if I looked to see where they were taking
18 him, that they would open fire on the flat or throw zolja at it.
19 My husband wanted to take a cardigan with him, and this man told
20 him that he would not need it and fired between the two of us in the
21 anteroom, and this bullet went through our freezer and hit a cupboard in
22 the passageway. But we saw that only later on. And he took my husband
23 away. Then came back 15 minutes later to get my son. He ordered him to
24 turn face to the wall, told him to put his hands up, and asked me "Where's
25 that fair-haired woman"? And I said, "I guess you mean me. I'm his
1 mother." He had two more soldiers with him. They took my son away. And
2 I did not know anything else about them.
3 Q. Let me ask you a couple of questions about your answer just now.
4 The HVO soldier who came to your house at approximately noon on the 10th
5 of May, I'm just looking at the transcript, just so we're clear, and if
6 you can, can you spell his first name and his last name.
7 A. To spell it, C-a-r-a-p-i-n-a. First name, D-a-n-k-o.
8 Q. First name Danko.
9 A. That's right.
10 Q. Now, you said that same soldier came back after first taking your
11 husband away and took one of your sons. Is that correct?
12 A. It is.
13 Q. Was it the older son that was taken away at that time?
14 A. Yes, that's right, the older one.
15 Q. And can you tell the Chamber, just so the record is complete,
16 where was your younger son at that time, in general terms? And again,
17 don't name names. But where was your younger son?
18 A. My younger son was in the flat of one of his friends.
19 Q. Did you learn at that time or come to know later where both your
20 husband and your older son were taken after they were taken from your
22 A. I found that out the next day. I learned that they were at the
23 Heliodrom, or rather -- sorry, first, they took them to the mechanical
24 engineering faculty, and they were kept there until midnight or 1.00 in
25 the morning. And the next morning, they were taken to the Heliodrom.
1 Q. All right. Now, staying, again, on the 10th of May, can you tell
2 us whether this same HVO soldier came back to your flat still again?
3 A. He did, yes. He came back to my flat half an hour later and
4 requested the keys to the flat and to the garage. He went back to the
5 garage and drove away the car and seized all the keys I had.
6 Q. Did you ever receive your car back?
7 A. Never.
8 Q. On the 9th and 10th of May, and again without naming any names,
9 the area where you lived, were you surrounded by a number of Croat
10 families or Croat neighbours?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And while your husband and older son and others were being taken
13 away, did you see any of the Croat families being taken away?
14 A. I did not.
15 Q. Witness AD, I want to direct your attention to the following day,
16 the 11th of May. Does someone come to your house with some information
17 for you on that day?
18 A. Yes. At 6.00 in the afternoon, three soldiers came. I did not
19 know them. And they did not tell me their names, but one of them said
20 that my husband had sent for the motorbike, so I went downstairs and took
21 out the motorbike. And they drove it away. I just asked one of them
22 "What has happened to my husband"? And he said, "You'll find that out in
23 ten days."
24 And I'm sorry, but I have to add this, too: He also said, "Your
25 husband did not fair well [redacted]
8 A. All right.
9 Q. Now, did anyone else come to your apartment on the 11th of May
10 around that time, besides these three men?
11 A. No, no.
12 Q. And is it correct, Witness AD, that your husband and your older
13 son were then held at the Heliodrom for approximately the next ten days?
14 A. Yes, it is.
15 Q. After that time, did your husband and your older son return to
16 your flat -- return to you in your flat?
17 A. That's right.
18 Q. Witness AD, I only want to touch on this briefly, but did either
19 your husband or your older son give you any information about what had
20 happened to them, what they had seen or heard when they were being held at
21 the Heliodrom?
22 A. Yes. Both my husband and my son told me that there were about
23 three or four hundred people in the large hall. They were all put up
24 there. My husband was beaten up then. His ribs were broken. He had big
25 wounds on his knees. His trousers were torn. He was black and blue
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts. Pages 8180 to 8184.
1 around his eyes. And their nerves were in very bad shape.
2 Q. Did your husband and your older son then continue to live, the
3 three of you - and your younger son - continue to live in your flat, then,
4 together until approximately the 30th of June, 1993?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And can you tell the Chamber on the 30th of June, 1993 what
8 A. On the 30th of June, 1993, at 8.00 in the evening, they took away
9 all the Muslim men from their flats. They went to all the state cases [as
10 interpreted], to all the houses, and rounded them up and took them all to
11 the Heliodrom.
12 Q. Did you -- before that -- let me go back for a moment. Between
13 the time that your husband was released from the Heliodrom and the time
14 when he was arrested again, on the 30th of June, did he say anything to
15 you about any fears that he had or any encounters or meetings that he had
16 had with any persons?
17 A. Like this: Between the 9th of May, until the 30th of June, they
18 dared not go out into the street. And most of us stayed in our houses, in
19 our flats, because Croat troops were around our buildings all the time.
20 Q. All right. During that time, Witness AD, did your husband say
21 anything to you that he was afraid of any particular person and he feared
22 that something would happen to him?
23 A. [No audible response]
24 Q. You'll have to -- I see your head nodding in the affirmative, but
25 you'll have to give a verbal response.
1 A. Yes, yes. My husband had been to see my aunt who lived across the
2 street from Stela's space. And on his way back, on the bicycle, he came
3 back, he was very pale, and started smoking one cigarette after the other,
4 walking up and down the house, and saying, "I've just seen Stela. He'll
5 kill me." He was very upset.
6 Q. Did your husband explain to you at that time what the basis for
7 him saying that was, what had happened, or what the circumstances were,
8 that caused him to say that "he'll" -- meaning -- referring to Stela,
9 "He'll kill me"? Do you know why he said that?
10 A. He was riding a bicycle, and Stela said -- that is, he addressed
11 him by his name and said, "Where are you, thief?"
12 Q. All right. Now, going back to after, then, your husband was
13 arrested on the 30th of June. Again, did you know or come to know where
14 he was taken at that time?
15 A. I found it out on the 30th of June in the morning that they had
16 taken him to the Heliodrom.
17 Q. In terms of your two sons, which again we won't use their names,
18 did your old -- your older son avoided being arrested on the 30th of June;
19 is that correct?
20 A. It is.
21 Q. And again, without using any names, where was he on the 30th of
22 June which prevented him from -- or at least, he was not arrested that
23 day? Where was he?
24 A. On the 30th of June, immediately after my husband's arrest, we
25 took him to a locality across the street from Stela's building to his
1 girlfriend's, and he hid there in the loft for ten days. And my younger
2 son was on Husinska Buna Street at his friend's, whose mother was a Croat
3 and father a Muslim.
4 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, I'm about to start on a different
5 series of questions, and I would suggest that that might be a good time to
7 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
8 Mr. Usher, would you please bring the witness out of the room
9 first, after pulling down the blinds.
10 Witness, I'm afraid we have to keep you here for another day. As
11 I did with other witnesses, during your stay here, do not talk to anybody
12 about your testimony and do not let anybody talk to you about it.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Very well.
14 JUDGE LIU: You may go now.
15 [The witness stands down]
16 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, before the Chamber arrives --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Mr. Scott.
18 MR. SCOTT: My apology. Before the Chamber rises, could I have
19 one moment of your time, please.
20 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.
21 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, I will not be very popular for raising
22 this subject, but I feel that I've been required to. I don't know if the
23 Chamber would entertain the possibility of having session -- being in
24 session tomorrow afternoon or whether that's a possibility or not. We
25 have gotten a bit behind this week, I'm afraid.
1 JUDGE LIU: Well, the problem is that we could not find a
2 courtroom tomorrow afternoon. So we could only sit in the morning
3 session, which is that -- till 1.00.
4 MR. SCOTT: All right. Thank you, Mr. President. I thought I had
5 to ask. Thanks.
6 JUDGE LIU: We'll resume at 9.30 tomorrow morning.
7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
8 at 4.00 p.m., to be reconvened on Friday,
9 the 18th day of January, 2002, at 9.30 a.m.