1 Monday, 26 February 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller, the next witness.
6 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, the next witness is K54.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: And the protective measures for this witness are
9 MS. MOELLER: Yes, he has face protection and pseudonym.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. Well, we shall go into closed session
11 while --
12 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: -- The courtroom.
14 Sorry. Just one moment.
15 Yes, Mr. Bakrac.
16 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, with your leave, before
17 the witness enters, Defence submitted a motion seeking to exclude this
18 witness completely and the Bench refused our application. Before the
19 witness enters, defence submitted a motion seeking to exclude this witness
20 completely and the Bench refused our application. Before the witness
21 enters, wanted to put another motion forth by which we would ask that
22 certain portions of his testimony be excluded. We saw that he would be a
23 combination of 92 ter and a live witness. We asked that his statement on
24 three incidents pertaining to 1999 be excluded; they were not made part of
25 the indictment, and I may offer additional arguments.
1 These are the incidents pertaining to the 28th of February, 1999,
2 in Ljubizda Has and then another one in mid-March in Jeskovo and then the
3 25th of March in the village of in Trnje. What is particularly of our
4 concern is the Trnje incident, which was not stipulated, neither in the
5 indictment nor in the pre-trial brief and it wasn't to be found in the
6 information according to the Rule 65 ter.
7 When it comes to this latest incident in the village of Trnje on
8 the 25th of March --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: What do you mean, Mr. Bakrac, that it's not in 65
10 ter. You must have received the witness's statement.
11 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, we received the
12 witness's statement in September or somewhat later. This witness-- or
13 rather, the material pertaining to him was disclosed later, but in the 65
14 ter summary, which is also another argument I wanted to use, it is stated
15 that he is to testify on the incident that took place on the 25th of March
16 south to the village of Mamusa in the municipality of Prizren. At the
17 time when the 65 ter summary was compiled and significantly prior to the
18 indictment in 2003, almost four years ago, and three years before the
19 amendments to the indictment, this statement went to the location and
20 showed the villages mentioned in his statement to the investigators.
21 On that occasion he identified the village of Trnje and the OTP
22 has had that information for three years. We were told he was to testify
23 on the village south of Mamusa in the municipality of Prizren. The
24 village of Trnje is to the east of Mamusa. And I can go back to the
25 disclosure list. The witness is -- on the 16th of July, 2002, that is
1 almost five years ago, the witness went there with the OTP investigators
2 and at page 1 of supplemental information dated the 16th of July and then
3 revised in page 5, paragraph 4 he mentions Suva Reka and Trnje.
4 First of all, the village of Trnje and the incident pertaining to
5 that village is not in the indictment and it is not in the pre-trial
6 brief, although since 2002 that incident was identified particularly by
7 this witness and linked to the village of Trnje. In the 65 ter summary we
8 received concerning another incident that may appear similar, we were told
9 that that incident will be addressed by the witness concerning a village
10 south, which is to the south of Mamusa and Trnje is to the east.
11 Another thing we wanted to stress because of the need for a fair
12 trial which far exceeds the probative value which witness has to offer, if
13 we go to the transcript from a previous trial, and because of the
14 protective measures and at the end of that testimony the -- Judge Kwon
15 asked him when he went to that location whether he showed to the
16 investigators the exact spot where five female victims had been buried,
17 killed during the incident that I am talking about. The witness said no,
18 but the investigators said that that location was known to them. Since we
19 are still in 2003, and this witness claims that the investigators knew of
20 that location, we received no notification of the victims or any type of
21 notification which would state that the victims pertaining to that
22 incident had been found.
23 Why do I mention the need for a fair trial and that it far exceeds
24 the probative value of this testimony pertaining to this part of it?
25 Well, it would be unfair to the accused to have an incident which could
1 serve to show a pattern of behaviour to be taken as something that had
2 been proven, whereas on the other hand, the OTP, apart from the witness
3 statement, has no list of victims and it was never established who exactly
4 those victims were. And on top of it all, that incident is not
5 corroborated by any other evidence or proof. Therefore, we believe that
6 the testimony of this witness should not include the three aforementioned
7 incidents, the one from Ljubizda Has which is not to be found neither in
8 the indictment nor in the pre-trial brief, then the second incident of
9 Jeskovo and then the third one of Trnje for all the aforementioned
11 The Trnje incident, as treated in the supplemental information, is
12 stated as Trnje/Suva Reka, but that incident has nothing to do with the
13 incident in Suva Reka dated the 25th of March. These are two separate
14 locations. The village of Trnje is halfway to Prizren when going from
15 Suva Reka and has got nothing to do with the 25th of March Suva Reka
16 incident. That is why I believe it would be unfair to the accused to have
17 this testimony in its entirety for all the reasons I have mentioned.
18 Thank you, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Which paragraph is the incident in Jeskovo in this
21 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, perhaps my learned
22 friend may assist me. I have before me the B/C/S. It's in my version,
23 paragraph 3, page 5, and if I may have a moment, I may be able to provide
24 the paragraph and page reference in the English.
25 MS. MOELLER: I may assist --
1 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Page 4, the last paragraph.
2 MS. MOELLER: Page 5, the first paragraph, I think, deals with
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Is it actually named in the statement?
5 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it is not in the
6 statement, but in the supplemental information, the P number being 2673
7 dated the 16th of July, 2002, it reads: "Correction or addition,
8 paragraph 6, page 4, Jeskovo." As far as I understand it, in that
9 supplemental information of the 16th of July, 2005, this is where we can
10 find it. It was almost five years ago and four years after the pre-trial
11 brief and the amended indictment.
12 And if I may add something regarding the principle of fair trial.
13 The accused were not put on sufficient notice concerning the specific
14 allegations that have to do with this witness.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: And the paragraph -- the first incident you
16 referred to was the 28th of March -- sorry, 28th of February.
17 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, the 28th of
18 February, Ljubizda Has.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Is that --
20 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] But the most drastic example is the
21 third incident.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: And the first one, though, is that referred to in
23 the paragraph before Jeskovo? Yes.
24 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Trnje follows
25 immediately the incident in Jeskovo and I believe it is the most drastic
1 example concerning the arguments I put forth.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller.
3 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, several points.
4 First of all, to start with, the last issue we just discussed.
5 The two incidents just shortly before the NATO bombing started, we -- that
6 was already subject to the written filings and we submitted in this regard
7 that they are relevant to paragraph 99 of the indictment, which explicitly
8 charges that, in late February and early March, forces of the FRY and
9 Serbia launched a series of offensives against dozens of predominantly
10 Kosovo Albanian villages and town during the peace negotiations in
11 France. So this is the very period concerned and the evidence is relevant
12 in this regard. Your Honours already decided on many of the arguments
13 Mr. Bakrac repeated now, I think, in your decision of 15th February 2007
14 on the relevance and admissibility of this witness's evidence.
15 As regards Trnje village, the incident is mentioned in the 65 ter
16 summary. There is a reference in the fourth paragraph to the killing of
17 15 people, including women and children. It's correct what Mr. Bakrac
18 says, that the reference is to a village south of Mamusa. Now, this was-
19 because at some point it wasn't really clear from the witness's evidence
20 which village it was this killing took place in, and only after he visited
21 the site with the investigator it became clear that it was actually Trnje
22 village --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: That was in 2002?
24 MS. MOELLER: That's correct.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
1 MS. MOELLER: He confirmed that also in his live evidence in
2 Milosevic, and it is nobody's fault but mine that I didn't change it in
3 the 65 ter summary to say "Trnje." However, the Defence has had the
4 statement and the testimony from Milosevic, everything, since the day we
5 applied to have this witness added to the list, which was late last year,
6 and they were perfectly aware of where this killing occurred.
7 So I don't think this is a valid argument really of lack of notice
8 because it's clear from all the material that was given to them for the
9 witness that it was, indeed, in the village of Trnje. And at the end of
10 the day, the substance which is set out in the 65 ter summary; namely,
11 what really happened, who was killed, is exactly the same as appears in
12 his evidence. So it's really just the concrete location where there may
13 have been some unclarity.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: What was the date of the application to add this
16 MS. MOELLER: It was in November, I think. I would have to check
17 the exact date. No, sorry, it was 8 September 2006, actually.
18 I would also like to ...
19 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
21 MS. MOELLER: Excuse me. I would also like to address the point
22 raised about whether or not the human remains of the victims of the
23 killing in Trnje were actually exhumed and there is any information in the
24 office that we haven't disclosed.
25 The witness told me in the proofing this time again that an
1 investigator told him that we knew more about that. I haven't been able
2 to see any information on that, and from my internal investigations, there
3 was no exhumation, so we don't have the names of the victims. As far as I
4 could find out, in 2002, when all these events and the two witnesses who
5 were able to talk about these events came to the knowledge of the OTP,
6 there wasn't any possibility to do further exhumations in this regard.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: He says in his evidence that he marked a spot where
8 certain bodies were buried. Is that the site that we're talking about,
9 where five people were buried?
10 MS. MOELLER: Yes.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: And no one's made any effort to locate it, is what
12 you're saying?
13 MS. MOELLER: What I'm saying is that, to my knowledge, there
14 hasn't been any possibility given for this case to do further
15 investigations in this particular --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: You mean nobody's tried to find this site -- this
17 location, in spite of what the witness has said? Is that what you're
18 telling us?
19 MS. MOELLER: Yes. What I'm telling you is because it was at the
20 very late stage in the Milosevic case and the Kosovo investigations were
21 at the advanced stage, there wasn't any exhumation done. The focus was --
22 JUDGE BONOMY: No, that's not my question. Are you saying you
23 haven't even found the location? It was marked but -- he said he marked
24 it in a particular way. Has no one tried to find it?
25 MS. MOELLER: Well, according to the witness an investigator went
1 there and had a look at the site, but this investigator is no longer
2 here. I'm trying -- I tried to verify it, but from the investigation
3 section, as it is today, I couldn't retrieve any positive information on
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, in this whole matter of it, the thing I have
6 greatest difficulty with is why Trnje is not in the indictment. I asked
7 the question in the Milosevic trial -- at least when I read my way into
8 that trial, it was a striking feature of this incident that it wasn't in
9 his indictment either. And it's -- coincides with the whole theme of your
10 case, which is as of the NATO bombing there is this ethnic cleansing
11 campaign. So what -- why was this -- nothing done after the Milosevic
12 trial to put this particular incident into the indictment? Because if
13 it's not, it's an incident that on the face of it bears direct comparison
14 with the various ones which are specified and you would be asking us to
15 make very specific findings about it to the prejudice of the accused
16 without ever indicting them for it.
17 MS. MOELLER: Well, Your Honours, with all due respect to the
18 victims of this incident, it is a comparatively small and minor killing,
19 if one can say that about any killing at all.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: This is the 50 to 60 who were killed?
21 MS. MOELLER: No, I mean we have only -- in regard to this
22 incident, we have two witnesses who testified about that, and they
23 testified about having seen a number of people being killed during the
24 operation in the village, but we don't have any evidence from any
25 witnesses there, from any victims there, and we don't have the
1 identification of the people killed there.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Your 65 ter summary says: "The witness saw
3 soldiers force 15 people, including women and children, out of a home,
4 line them up, and shoot them in a courtyard. He estimates around 50 to 60
5 civilians were killed in the operation. He was then involved in actually
6 disposing of some of the bodies." And you say that this is minor compared
7 with others in the indictment.
8 MS. MOELLER: Indeed it is, Your Honours, because it's already
9 from the larger incidents that we have, as you know, three were excluded
10 from this indictment. So at the time we were preparing this case, we were
11 only looking at streamlining the case and boiling it down but not to
12 extending it, and that was, of course, one of the major thoughts behind
13 that. But also on the basis of the evidence we had available at the time,
14 it was not detailed enough to really present it as a charged crime site,
15 because it would have involved extensive investigations into this matter
16 because, as I said, we had some testimony about persons who took part in
17 the operation, but we were not or are not in possession of much other
18 evidence on these accounts. So we would have had to investigate this
20 And in light of the multiplicity of murder incidents we had
21 already charged, we didn't find it necessary to charge one more in the
22 indictment. And I just want to underline once more that we're not trying
23 to lead this evidence as a murder count or as proof for the murder. It
24 is, as we submitted in our -- in our written submissions on the
25 admissibility of this evidence, it is evidence that goes to the question
1 whether a certain style of operations was conducted all over Kosovo,
2 whether there was a joint criminal enterprise, and in this regard we still
3 maintain that it does not need to be set out in the indictment as a murder
4 count. One --
5 JUDGE BONOMY: It's not specified as a deportation count, either.
6 MS. MOELLER: No, Your Honour, because it's not a deportation
7 incident, actually. It's just another example of how forces conducted
8 so-called anti-terrorist operations.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: You're not leading it as evidence of murder or as
10 proof of a murder. So what are you leading it as evidence of?
11 MS. MOELLER: We are leading it as evidence of the many
12 allegations in the indictment of how operations were conducted by the army
13 during the relevant period in the relevant municipalities that excessive
14 and discriminate force was used over and again and that included
15 mistreatment and also killing and other things, but it's just to show this
16 kind of behaviour of the forces; also to show that there must have been a
17 joint criminal enterprise which included this way of operating in
18 so-called anti-terrorist operations.
19 We also lead this evidence to show which forces were actually in
20 the area, because although this particular witness can't give you any
21 brigade names or any other things, he can give you the names of many
22 commanding officers and we have the corresponding documents, military
23 documents, which show then who was where when in the area. This is highly
24 relevant to the indictment, as you have always pointed out that we make
25 sure to verify that actually forces that were under the command of these
1 accused were operating in the area. He's also giving that evidence, and
2 there are many other aspects his evidence goes to, as we have argued in
3 the written submissions that you have received on the 12th of February.
4 If I may add one aspect why the Trnje incident wasn't charged in
5 the indictment, I forgot to mention that, as I said, we have two witnesses
6 who can testify to these events, and both of them were witnesses also in
7 the Milosevic case, both of them had quite some problems after testifying
8 in the Milosevic case. And one of them, K82, we had decided not to hear,
9 also had some other problems that made it likely at the time that we would
10 actually never get him here to testify. This witness, who is due to
11 testify today, after Milosevic expressed unwillingness to ever testify
12 again and only late last year, just before we filed the application to add
13 him, suddenly he changed his mind and was willing to come again. So this
14 was another reason we couldn't add Trnje, because these two witnesses who
15 were actually the foundation of this incident were more than unlikely to
16 ever come. We were positively surprised ourselves last year that it
17 worked out that they would actually come. So this was another reason to
18 decide not to add a count to the indictment on this particular incident.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Ms. Moeller.
20 [Trial Chamber confers].
21 JUDGE BONOMY: The Chamber will adjourn to consider this.
22 --- Break taken at 9.31 a.m.
23 --- On resuming at 10.46 a.m.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: The first two incidents referred to by Mr. Bakrac
25 seem to relate to matters that we have already decided the witness should
1 be permitted to give evidence about. The third one, Trnje, is closely
2 related and offered by the Prosecution as evidence of the general nature
3 of the conduct of particular sections of the VJ and the police. As you
4 all know, we have already decided that this evidence is, in principle --
5 this evidence of this type and in relation to these areas is in principle
6 admissible. However, we intend to reserve the question of whether to
7 admit the evidence until after we have heard it, and that applies to the
8 evidence in relation to all three locations.
9 If admitted -- and there's a significant chance that that will
10 happen subject, obviously, to developments as we listen carefully to it,
11 but if that evidence is admitted, the decision to admit it is potentially
12 inconsistent with the decision we took in relation to the evidence of K82.
13 We are obviously in an entirely different situation now and we have a much
14 greater knowledge of the circumstances, not only of the events that are
15 being -- that are the subject of this case but also much greater knowledge
16 of how the case is to be or has been presented.
17 We would, therefore, be willing to consider an application, if it
18 were made to us, to reconsider our decision in relation to K82; however,
19 if it was intended to make such an application, it would have to be done
20 more or less instantly. Now, by that, I mean certainly sometime in the
21 course of this week and I would have thought Wednesday was a reasonable
22 deadline. That's a different decision, in fact, from deciding whether to
23 admit the evidence of K54, but as I say, and bearing in mind the apparent
24 inconsistency that would arise, then it would be of assistance to the
25 Trial Chamber to have submissions on the question of whether we should
1 reconsider that decision, should the -- early, should the Prosecution have
2 that in mind.
3 So we will now proceed to hear the evidence of this witness. We
4 need to go into closed session for him to enter the courtroom.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 [Closed session]
19 [Open session]
20 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: We will refer to you as Witness K54. You know that
22 that's one of the methods being used to protect your identity and thus
23 your security. In addition, your appearance will be distorted on the
24 television screens that display this evidence so that you cannot be
25 recognised from your appearance in court. We have seen a statement that
1 you gave and then an addendum, an addition to that statement, and we have
2 also seen a transcript of your evidence in the trial of Slobodan
4 The purpose of having you here today is to enable the counsel
5 involved in the case to ask additional questions to clarify things, to
6 expand the information, and in some instances to challenge your evidence.
7 You will assist us greatly if you can concentrate on the particular
8 question that you're asked and try to restrict your answer to dealing with
9 the point that is raised with you. Do you understand that?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: The first person to ask questions will be for the
12 Prosecution, and that will be Ms. Moeller.
13 MS. MOELLER: Thank you, Your Honours.
14 WITNESS: WITNESS K54
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 Examination by Ms. Moeller:
17 Q. Good morning, sir.
18 A. Good morning.
19 Q. I will show you a piece of paper with some data on it. I would
20 like you to confirm that this is your name and your correct data, please.
21 A. Correct.
22 MS. MOELLER: Your Honour, this is Exhibit P2668 and I would
23 tender this under seal.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
25 MS. MOELLER:
1 Q. Sir, did you give a statement to the -- to investigators of the
2 Office of the Prosecutor of this Tribunal in April 2002?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And in July 2002 did you give an addendum statement as well?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And when you came here last week to testify in this trial, did you
7 have the opportunity to have both statements read back to you or did you
8 read it back yourself?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And in the process of that, did you point out some small
11 corrections to us?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. In particular, in relation to your statement --
14 MS. MOELLER: It's page 4 of the English version, Your Honours.
15 Q. You are talking about an incident that occurred at Ljubizda Has on
16 the 28th of February, 1999. Your statement says that all combat groups
17 were deployed to this location. Did you make a correction to this
18 statement and if so, which?
19 A. Not all the combat groups were mentioned there but only part of
20 them, that is to say the entire barracks. I mean the entire barracks was
21 involved in this action, and a part, a small part, of the combat groups.
22 Q. Do you know which combat groups were there?
23 A. Combat Group 2, it was stationed there in that area.
24 Q. Thank you. Now, in relation to another incident you deal with in
25 your -- in both of your statements as well as in the transcript, this is
1 the incident at Trnje. And it is not quite clear from the different
2 statements where you actually were when the killing of the 15 civilians
3 occurred and you made some further explanations in this regard in the
4 proofing, did you?
5 A. Yes.
6 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, this relates to the statement page 5,
7 the addendum, the first page, and in the transcript it is pages 8307 and
9 Q. Now, can you clarify when you were -- when the sergeant removed
10 the family from the house and the civilians were shot, where were you?
11 A. I was at this small hill, this little hill, and I was far away
12 from that location, actually, a hundred metres away and I saw clearly what
13 was going on there. I mean I could see this well what was going on, what
14 was being done, and later on I came and saw all of that -- I mean the dead
15 and the killed civilians.
16 Q. While you were on the hill, what exactly did you see in relation
17 to this incident, can you explain?
18 A. I saw my -- I mean our troops, that combat group of mine where I
19 was, taking civilians out of the house and putting them between the house
20 and a wall and, quite simply, opening bursts of gun-fire at them and
21 killing all of them.
22 Q. And you mention a particular officer who participated in this
23 incident. How did you recognise this officer?
24 A. He always had this cloth on his head when he went into action
25 instead of a military cap. I recognised him by that. He used that in
1 previous actions and in this particular one.
2 Q. And did you see him participate in this shooting with your own
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thank you. Now, with these corrections and clarifications added
6 to your two statements, do you attest today that what you -- what you
7 testified to in the statement of April and July 2002 is true and correct
8 to the best of your knowledge and that you would testify the same if you
9 were asked all these questions again today?
10 A. Well, yes.
11 Q. Did you also testify in the trial against Slobodan Milosevic in
13 A. Yes, yes.
14 Q. And after you testified, did you receive a copy of the tape that
15 showed your testimony in this trial?
16 A. What do you mean? What do you mean? Did I receive what?
17 Q. Did you get a copy of your testimony on tape?
18 A. Yes, yes, I asked for that. I asked to be given that.
19 Q. And since then, have you viewed this video?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And how many times have you viewed it?
22 A. Twice.
23 Q. And when you came here last week, did you also have the
24 opportunity to have parts of your transcript read back to you?
25 A. Yes, I did have this opportunity of having it read back to me,
1 this testimony of mine.
2 Q. And in regard to your transcript, did you point out one correction
3 you wished to make in relation to a soldier that is mentioned therein with
4 the name Milosevic?
5 A. Could you repeat that question.
6 Q. Yes. In your transcript, that's page 8242, lines 19 to 23, you
7 referred to a soldier named Milosevic, and the transcript reads that
8 Milosevic was --
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. -- that a Kosovo Albanian woman was killed. Did you make a
11 correction about what this soldier was actually sorry about?
12 A. Well, he was sorry that he hadn't raped that woman first. It was
13 a young girl. And he was very angry at this soldier who had killed her,
14 why he didn't let him rape her first. That was the reason. I heard that
16 Q. And with this correction in mind, do you attest today that the
17 transcript from your testimony in Milosevic is true and correct and that
18 you would give the same answers today if asked the same answers once more?
19 A. Yes.
20 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, I would like to tender the statement
21 of April 2002 which is Exhibit P2676, then the addendum of July which is
22 Exhibit P2679, and the transcript, Exhibit P2677. All three documents
23 would need to be under seal.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
25 MS. MOELLER: Can we now please call up Exhibit 45.
1 Q. We are now calling you up a map, you will see it on your screen,
2 and I would like to ask you some questions about the map.
3 Sir, can you see the map on the screen?
4 A. Yes, I can see it.
5 Q. And did you have the opportunity to have a look at this map when
6 you came here last week?
7 A. Yes, yes. I had the opportunity of having a look at it.
8 Q. And which of the locations which are encircled on this map can you
9 confirm as having been the locations that you referred to in your
11 A. There is a place called Trnje, then Damjane, then Meca [Realtime
12 transcript read in error "Medvedce"] --
13 MR. VISNJIC: Your Honour.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic.
15 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have an objection in
16 respect of this way of using the map. The witness has already had various
17 locations circled for him on this map and then he's just reading this out.
18 I don't see what the Prosecutor wanted to achieve by doing this. I think
19 that the witness should be shown a map without any markings and then he
20 can make markings and locate various places on the map.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller.
22 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, this map was not created by the
23 witness but by an investigator after he went in July 2002 to the different
24 places with the witness, and I actually wanted the witness to point out
25 one village that is circled on the map which he would not confirm.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: I think it makes it worse that this is a map
2 compiled by someone else, and I don't think you should be using this map
3 in this way. So we'll need to do it a different way.
4 MS. MOELLER: All right. Then we'll leave the map for the time
6 Q. Sir, in your statement you refer to the fact that before you were
7 sent into Kosovo you received a so-called short-track training of two and
8 a half months. What were --
9 A. Yes. Yes, yes.
10 Q. Mm-hmm. What were you taught during these two and a half months?
11 A. I was just taught how to drive, then four days of infantry
12 training, and that was all. After two and a half months, I was sent out
13 to Kosovo.
14 Q. During these two and a half months of training, did you receive
15 any education about the laws of war, about how to behave in an armed
16 conflict as a soldier?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Were you told about the Geneva Conventions or did you ever hear
19 about them during this time?
20 A. No. At that time I didn't hear anything about the Geneva
22 Q. And were you told anything about how to treat the civilian
23 population or prisoners of war when in a combat situation?
24 A. No.
25 Q. And after you arrived in Kosovo, did you receive any such training
1 on the laws or on the general ways how to behave towards civilian
2 population and prisoners of war?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Were you issued any uniforms before you were sent to Kosovo?
5 A. Yes, yes. Uniform of the Army of Yugoslavia that I was issued.
6 Q. And what colour was the uniform?
7 A. Well, it was of a camouflage colour. One was olive-green-grey and
8 the other one was camouflage, if I understand this correctly.
9 Q. Okay. Now, in your statement you mention different combat groups
10 who were operating in 1998 in the area you were deployed to as well.
11 Would you know the name of the brigade these combat groups were part of?
12 A. No, the name of the brigade. Can this question be a bit clearer,
14 Q. Let me put it differently. Did you know much about the different
15 units and brigade names in 1999 - sorry - in 1998?
16 A. Yes, some.
17 Q. So which -- which names did you know?
18 A. The 82nd Paratroopers I think, if I can remember now. It was --
19 well, it wasn't within our barracks but it was ...
20 Q. But is that about what you know about brigade names or unit names
21 or were you familiar with all the different names?
22 A. Well, there were these special units of the police and there were
23 these sort of SAJ people, they were called.
24 Q. But coming back to the VJ, would it be fair to say that you are
25 not, were not, and are not familiar with the names of the different
1 brigades and units?
2 A. I'm not familiar, I'm not familiar. Some -- well, I cannot really
3 say that I find them familiar. I'm not sure.
4 Q. In your statement you say that you were delivering rations to the
5 different combat groups. How far away were the different combat groups
6 away from each other, approximately, and we're talking about 1998.
7 A. Well, from 20 to 30 kilometres, that was the distance from one to
8 another, even 10.
9 Q. And how often would you do your rounds and deliver rations to the
10 different groups?
11 A. Every other day -- no, every third day, sorry.
12 Q. Now --
13 JUDGE BONOMY: We often hear soldiers tell us which section of the
14 army they belonged to. Now, if you're asked which grouping of the army
15 you were part of, what's the answer to that?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What part of the army?
17 JUDGE BONOMY: What unit of the army did you belong to?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was in the logistics battalion.
19 That is a service that provides services to the army.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: But you do not know which brigade that battalion
21 was part of?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I cannot remember.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
24 Ms. Moeller.
25 MS. MOELLER:
1 Q. I'm now turning to the events in Meca village in August 1998. In
2 your statement you of it about the VJ tank firing into the village. Now,
3 before the tank was ordered to fire, was there any firing coming from the
4 village of Meca towards the VJ?
5 A. There was no firing from the village.
6 Q. Was there any sign of the KLA being in that village before the
7 tank was tired, from what you could see?
8 A. No, no.
9 Q. And after the tank was discharged into the village, was then any
10 firing coming from the village towards the VJ?
11 A. No.
12 MR. VISNJIC: Your Honour --
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Which paragraph of this statement are we at?
14 MS. MOELLER: Sorry, Your Honour, this is page 3 of the statement.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
16 MS. MOELLER: And it's the fourth paragraph on the top.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Where is the reference to Meca?
18 MS. MOELLER: That's in the addendum, on the first page it refers
19 to page 3, para 4, Meca --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Meca, that's not what's being produced in the
22 Mr. Visnjic.
23 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think that it would
24 be fair if the Prosecutor would put to the witness the information that
25 she has before her, actually that he had already stated to them in this
1 additional statement, in the addendum, that he was not sure about the
2 village of Meca and I think that the Prosecutor knows this full well, and
3 now she is putting leading questions to him about that village.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: It turns out, I think, Mr. Visnjic that that's not
5 the village in question, that we're talking about a place called Meca and
6 that the transcript may be wrong.
7 MS. MOELLER: Yes. That's -- I did ask -- I did mention the
8 village of Meca because it's in the addendum, but it's not the village of
9 Medvedce, which is far more south in the Prizren area. We're talking
10 about a village close to Djakovica.
11 Q. In regard to this village you also state in your statement that
12 civilians started floating out of the house after it was shot at with the
13 tank. Did you recognise any armed or uniformed person being among these
14 civilians, anyone who could be said to be KLA in the broader sense?
15 A. No. I just saw women and children, little children.
16 Q. Now, moving on to the next village that you mention in your
17 statement --
18 MS. MOELLER: And this is also page 3, it's the last paragraph on
19 this page.
20 Q. And it is according to the addendum after going to this place with
21 investigators you identified this as being the village of Rakovica. Is
22 that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And you mentioned that in this village there were also MUP and PJP
25 units there.
1 A. Yes, yes. They were present.
2 Q. Can you describe what roles the different organisations had when
3 entering a village like Rakovica. By "different organisations," I mean
4 the VJ, the MUP, and the PJP that you referred to.
5 A. I can describe the police -- well, they would get there before us
6 and they would carry out an operation, and allegedly we would come as
7 their support. We would carry out our tasks, whereupon we would return
8 and they would usually stay and engage in plundering and kill whoever was
9 still alive.
10 Q. And this event in the village of Rakovica in August 1998, was that
11 actually the first time you saw VJ and police forces operating together?
12 A. No, it wasn't the first time. The first time was in Orahovac when
13 I was there, and some of the Frenki's men were there in black uniforms
14 with hats.
15 Q. When was that, approximately?
16 A. Approximately before the event in Rakovica, some two weeks before
17 that or 20, I cannot recall exactly.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Previous translation continues]... If we could be
19 directed where can we find this information where it is provided to us
20 before in any addendum or statement.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Moeller.
22 MS. MOELLER: Which particular information does my learned
23 friend --
24 JUDGE BONOMY: The reference to Frenki's men in black uniforms --
25 MS. MOELLER: Yes, I'm afraid there's no reference. I haven't
1 heard that before myself.
2 MR. LUKIC: We object to this part of his statement, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, it's supplementing what's there. I think
4 you're confined, Mr. Lukic, to commenting on it in due course and you may
5 have much to say about it to assist in our deliberations. I don't know if
6 Ms. Moeller intends to pursue this or not.
7 MS. MOELLER: I don't intend to pursue it as now any further, Your
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
10 MS. MOELLER:
11 Q. Sir, you then left Kosovo in early August 1998, and on page 4 of
12 the English version of the statement it says that you returned sometime
13 after the OSCE mission had already been established. Can you give the
14 month of when you approximately returned to Kosovo?
15 A. October.
16 Q. Okay. Now I would like to turn to the events in Jeskovo around
17 mid-March 1999.
18 MS. MOELLER: That's statement page 5, the first paragraph, Your
19 Honours. And could we go into private session shortly, because I would
20 like to deal with some names of his commanding officers which may reveal
21 his identity?
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
23 [Private session]
11 Pages 10504-10506 redacted. Private session
22 [Open session]
23 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
24 MS. MOELLER:
25 Q. In your statement you referred to seven bodies that you saw, seven
1 dead bodies that you saw, in the village. Were these male or female
2 bodies, if you know?
3 A. They were men. They had no military uniforms on. They wore
4 civilian clothing.
5 Q. Did you see any weapons about them?
6 A. No, but we found a hunting rifle.
7 Q. Where did you find this hunting rifle?
8 A. It was brought by a soldier. He may have taken it out of a
9 house. I don't know whether he entered any of the houses or if he found
10 it in the meadow. I'm not sure, but in any case he brought it with him.
11 Q. And how many other weapons, if any, were found in Jeskovo, to your
13 A. I had no opportunity to gain any knowledge of that. It was
14 getting dark, and we began withdrawing.
15 Q. Okay. Now, I want to move on to the events in Trnje.
16 MS. MOELLER: Page 5 of the statement, starting with the
17 second-last paragraph.
18 Q. When you arrived at the village or close to the village, you
19 testify in your statement that a commander - and I won't say the name now
20 in open - ordered the company commanders to take the men into the village
21 and kill all the civilians. Do you know which incident I refer to or
22 would you like me to give you the name of the officer I referred to?
23 A. I understand. It is clear.
24 Q. How do you know that this officer gave this order to the company
1 A. I was close to them. I could overhear. I didn't hear all the
2 details, but I heard them talking about going down to the village and to
3 complete the operation immediately.
4 Q. Did you hear the particular order that you mention in your
5 statement with your own ears issued by this officer or not?
6 A. Yes, yes, I did.
7 Q. How close were you?
8 A. Five metres, maybe 7 or 8 metres.
9 Q. Okay.
10 MS. MOELLER: Now, can we go back shortly into private session,
11 please. I would like to ask him something again that may identify him.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
13 [Private session]
11 Pages 10510-10512 redacted. Private session
9 [Open session]
10 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
11 MS. MOELLER:
12 Q. Now I would like to move on to the point in time when the unit
13 returned to the barracks in Prizren. You stated that the barracks had
14 been bombed and that the army had to move into a previously Kosovo
15 Albanian settlement close to these barracks. How many Albanians,
16 approximately, were forced out of the settlement in order for the VJ to
17 move in there?
18 A. Well, the entire settlement was forced out, about 200 to 300 homes
19 all together. They were ordered to leave their homes.
20 Q. And around which time did this approximately happen?
21 A. It happened on the fifth day of the bombing, when we returned from
22 the village of Trnje.
23 Q. And from there onwards, how long did you, you and your units, stay
24 in this settlement?
25 A. Two and a half months.
1 Q. During these two and a half months, did you observe any -- ever
2 any groups of people passing by the settlement?
3 A. Through the settlement, no one. No one dared to. Every day I
4 watched refugees going to Albania on foot or on tractors. Tractors were
5 full of refugees, the tractor-trailers were full.
6 Q. And that you watched while you were at the settlement close to
8 A. Yes, yes.
9 Q. Can you give an estimate of how many people you think you saw
10 passing by during these two and a half months?
11 A. Well, the first seven or eight days I didn't see anyone. After
12 that, every day refugees were passing down that road every day or
13 practically every day.
14 Q. And which direction were they going?
15 A. From the direction of Suva Reka towards Albania and also from the
16 direction of Djakovica towards Albania, or rather, the border crossing. I
17 can't remember. I can't remember the name of the border crossing.
18 Q. And your unit and the soldiers who saw these refugees passing by,
19 did you do anything in regard to them?
20 A. No. No, we didn't do anything.
21 Q. Okay.
22 MS. MOELLER: On page 7 of the statement the second paragraph,
23 Your Honours.
24 Q. You referred to your involvement in the stealing of cars and
25 trucks. How did you get involved in this? Can you tell us.
1 A. Well, it just so happened that I managed to ignite a car. There
2 was no key. I hot-wired it and nobody else knew how to do it except for
3 me, and word spread throughout the unit and then my commander and his NCOs
4 and officers would always bring me to a car to turn it on my hot-wiring it
5 and to bring it in for it to be used for army purposes, for army
7 MS. MOELLER: Could we shortly go into private session. I would
8 like to know the names of these officers.
9 Q. One second before you answer.
10 [Private session]
24 [Open session]
25 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
1 MS. MOELLER:
2 Q. How many other soldiers like you were involved in getting these
3 cars and trucks for the use of the army, as you say?
4 A. Well, there were quite a lot of them, but I cannot give you the
5 exact number. They were in other units and I didn't really know them that
7 Q. And how many cars and trucks did you personally take this way?
8 A. You want me to tell you exactly?
9 Q. Well, if you can.
10 A. Well, I took about four small cars, four trucks, and three
12 Q. And what do you mean when you say in your statement that good cars
13 were taken? What was considered a good car?
14 A. Well, those cars -- well, how can I say? For us in the army, all
15 of them were good, the ones we took.
16 Q. Okay. Do you know what happened to these cars when the army
17 withdrew from Kosovo?
18 A. I know about two for sure, that they were not taken up there to
19 Serbia. As for the others, I wasn't down there at the time because I was
20 allowed to go home six days before the withdrawal. And when I came back
21 to finish my military service in the town where I was asked to come, then
22 I noticed up there some of the vehicles that I had taken.
23 Q. And you said you noticed them. Were you positive that these were
24 the exact cars that you had actually taken in Kosovo?
25 A. I'm sure that those were the ones.
1 Q. While you were in Kosovo in 1999, did you see any other looting or
2 stealing taking place?
3 A. Yes, I did. I saw things being taken out of Albanian houses,
4 things that are things that one has in a house like TVs and TV antennas,
5 and things like that. I know that a policeman barged into a house
6 together with us, that is to say with the army. And I remember when he
7 took some money from a box.
8 Q. Where was that, which village?
9 A. This settlement where we had expelled the Albanians, and then we
10 settled down there. The settlement right below the barracks, the
11 settlement where we had expelled the population.
12 Q. That would be the one close to Prizren. Do I understand that
14 A. Yes, yes, Prizren, that was it.
15 Q. And who -- you said you saw things being taken out. Who took
16 these things, apart from the one occasion where you mentioned the
18 A. Well, for example, some officers were taken -- taking things out,
19 and their troops were helping them carry these things out. A friend of
20 mine, as a matter of fact, told me that before the withdrawal they were
21 loading trucks. For example, they'd load a truck from a house, they'd
22 fill up the truck, because Albanians had good things in their houses as a
23 rule, so they would take all of their things, these officers would take
24 all of their things, and take them to Serbia for their own use.
25 Q. And do you know the names of some of these officers? And just say
1 yes or no at this point.
2 A. I don't know the names, but anyway, every officer has rank
3 insignia so I knew that they were officers. A soldier couldn't
4 have ...
5 Q. Okay. Now, in your addendum you referred to another incident
6 involving the killing of three Albanian men, and you referred to your
7 commander giving two of the men who were shot a cigarette and then
8 shooting them. I would like to give us -- I would like you to give us the
9 name of this officer, but again I would like to go into private session
10 first, please.
11 [Private session]
18 [Open session]
19 THE REGISTRAR: We are back -- we are in open session, Your
21 MS. MOELLER: May I inquire from Your Honours when you intend to
22 have a break?
23 JUDGE BONOMY: 12.15.
24 MS. MOELLER: Sorry?
25 JUDGE BONOMY: 12.15.
1 MS. MOELLER: Yes, I have three more questions or so, so I should
2 be able to finish by then. Thank you.
3 Q. Sir, in your transcript you referred to a border crossing called
4 Vrmice. I hope I pronounce it understandably, and you said in your
5 previous testimony that at this border crossing policemen were taking
6 documents from Albanians and set them on fire. Did you see this with your
7 own eyes? Were you at this border crossing at any time?
8 A. No, I didn't see this with my own eyes, but they told me about it.
9 Q. Who is "they"?
10 A. Well, I had this soldier there who came from the same place that I
11 came from and he's the one who told me about this. Quite simply, I saw
12 him and he told me about this, what it was that was done.
13 Q. Okay. Also in your transcript --
14 MS. MOELLER: Excuse me, Your Honours, the reference for this --
15 for the documents and border crossing is page 8253 in the transcript. And
16 I now move on to page 8251.
17 Q. Where you, sir, referred to the fact that you drove the deputy of
18 your unit commander to certain meetings. Do you recall that evidence?
19 A. Yes, yes, I remember.
20 Q. And you testified that from the stories this deputy told you, you
21 concluded that there was a plan to expel the Albanians from Kosovo. Can
22 you give us some more details of the stories this deputy told you what --
23 which made you think that there was a plan of Kosovo Albanians being
25 A. Well, there's not much I can really say about this. I know that
1 once I was told they should all be thrown out. I talked to him a bit and
2 I sort of said, pretending, "Yes, yes, right," just for the hell of it.
3 And he said, "Well, that's what we are working for, that's what we're
4 working for." "That's what we're working for" means this plan of sorts.
5 Q. And do you know the name of this deputy? And just say yes or no
6 at this stage.
7 A. Yes, yes, I know.
8 MS. MOELLER: Can we go into private session one more time,
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
11 [Private session]
18 [Open session]
19 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
20 MS. MOELLER:
21 Q. Now, you left Kosovo, you said, a week -- sorry, around the 6th of
22 June, 1999. And in your statement, page 7, you say that you took a bus
23 from Pristina to Mitrovica. How was the situation in Pristina at that
24 time? What did you see when you came to Pristina to board the bus?
25 A. Well, the situation was very bad. I saw policemen from the
1 special unit shooting in a particular direction, and the neighbourhood
2 behind that policeman were all on fire, all the houses. I ran quickly
3 from one bus to another, so that's the only thing I could see and shooting
4 could be heard, the real thing, that is.
5 Q. Let me just clarify. Which city did you now talk about?
6 A. I'm talking about the place around the bus station in Mitrovica.
7 Q. Yes, I thought there was a misunderstanding, because I had asked
8 you about Pristina first. Did you observe anything particular in
10 A. In Pristina, I didn't observe anything and as for the area around
11 Pristina, between Pristina and Mitrovica, villages were on fire. There
12 was smoke there and tank fire could be heard. It could be heard pretty
13 well from the bus.
14 Q. So just to clarify what you just described. You watched while you
15 were on the bus between Pristina and Mitrovica. Is that correct?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Okay.
18 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, I think that completes my questions.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Ms. Moeller.
20 Mr. Zecevic, what order are we likely to have?
21 MR. ZECEVIC: Your Honour, we're going to follow the indictment
22 order in this case, and Mr. Milutinovic's Defence doesn't have any
23 questions for this witness.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Fila.
25 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] No, no, I don't either.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic.
2 MR. VISNJIC: Your Honour, I think there is some mistake. I'll be
3 last, so Mr. Lazarevic will be before me.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, when we return we can pick up with the
6 We'll go into closed session for the witness to leave the court.
7 We have to have a break at this stage, sir, so in a moment you
8 will leave the courtroom with the usher and he will bring you back once
9 the break is over.
10 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
11 [Closed session]
18 --- Recess taken at 12.16 p.m.
19 --- On resuming at 12.43 p.m.
1 [Open session]
2 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
3 Cross-examination by Mr. Ackerman:
4 Q. Good afternoon, Witness. I want to talk to you primarily, and
5 perhaps exclusively, about only one of the operations that you've talked
6 about in your Milosevic testimony and your statement and your testimony
7 here today, and that is the operation in mid-March 1999 at Jeskovo.
9 A. Okay.
10 Q. In Milosevic -- your testimony in Milosevic at page 8233 you talk
11 about being very near to General Delic on the morning when you approached
12 that village. You said you were only 20 to 30 metres away from him;
14 A. Yes, yes.
15 Q. And you claim that you heard him say that, "We should not let a
16 single person remain alive"?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And then you say that you heard him on the radio describe that
19 when a shell was fired on the village, that would be basically the signal
20 for the battle to begin. Is that also correct?
21 A. Yes, yes.
22 Q. I'm having trouble relating those two incidents. In the one place
23 you're 20 or 30 metres away from him and you hear him say what you claim
24 he said; and then in the other time you're hearing by radio. How much --
25 how far apart are those in terms of time?
1 A. When I was some 20 to 30 metres away, it was one and a half hours
2 after the occasion on which he had ordered the tank to fire a shell, when
3 we went down to the village. We all got close and went from one house to
4 the next. That's when I heard him say, "Kill everyone you come across."
5 Q. All right.
6 A. If I understood you correctly.
7 Q. You did, and that's the answer I was looking for. So once the
8 tank shell exploded in the village, you claim that you then began an
9 attack and fired on the village for about a half an hour?
10 A. Yes, around half an hour or 20 minutes. Then we stopped and
11 waited. Supposedly, we were waiting to see whether there would be any new
12 developments down there in the village. Since nothing was happening, we
13 were told to develop into a skirmish line and go down towards the village
15 Q. All right. What I'm trying to do is finish my cross of you rather
16 quickly, so I would hope that if I ask you a question that can be easily
17 answered that you do that and if I want an explanation I'll ask you for
18 it. Were you firing an automatic weapon in that first half-hour when you
19 fired on the village?
20 A. I did not for sure; others did, though.
21 Q. You did not for sure what?
22 A. Fire in the village.
23 Q. So you did no firing at all?
24 A. I did not fire at all.
25 Q. In Milosevic you were asked by Mr. Ryneveld regarding this: "After
1 the tank shell had been fired at the village," page 8234, Mr. Ryneveld
2 asked you: "What happened next?"
3 And you said: "We were shooting for about half an hour I think,
4 all of us."
5 Now, doesn't "all of us" include you?
6 A. I was speaking in general terms about the army, we, the army. I
7 did not open fire.
8 Q. So anybody who would read your statement: "We were shooting for
9 about half an hour, all of us," would be foolish to think that included
10 you. Is that what you're saying?
11 A. Yes, yes.
12 Q. Now, that firing that was not done by you lasted for about half an
13 hour and then stopped for about an hour, and then that's when you say
14 General Delic then ordered that you form a skirmish line and approach the
15 village; correct?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And I think it's your testimony that you saw one person killed --
18 actually observed one person being killed and that you saw seven dead
19 bodies at that scene, and according to you, everyone that you saw there
20 that had been killed was dressed in civilian clothes; correct?
21 A. Yes, it is.
22 Q. And you later heard after you had returned to barracks from
23 apparently your fellow soldiers that 30 persons had been killed there who
24 you believe were all civilians?
25 A. Yes, and I saw that these people were civilians. They had no
2 Q. Now, are you aware that Commander Delic testified in the Milosevic
4 A. I don't know.
5 Q. You didn't know that he testified in that case after you had
6 testified and that he was asked about your testimony?
7 A. I know nothing about that.
8 Q. All right. I will tell you that at page 41772 General Delic
9 claims that in your respective testimonies in Milosevic, you and Witness
10 K41 were trying to cover each other for crimes the two of you committed
11 later on. He says you came to testify because you had committed a crime
12 and that you took refuge from the police in the house of K41. Is that
14 A. It is a fabrication.
15 Q. Were you and K41 ever accused of committing any crimes?
16 A. No. He was. I was not. As for him being accused, I don't know
17 where the real problem lay. Currently he's serving a prison sentence.
18 Q. To your knowledge, you were never sought by the police?
19 A. No.
20 Q. In that period of time after you had returned from Kosovo, did you
21 have a passport?
22 A. No.
23 Q. What happened to your passport?
24 A. I had my passport made after I have served -- after I had served
25 my military term. Had I had a passport before that, they would never have
1 seen my face in the army.
2 Q. General Delic also says at page 41773 that on this day you're
3 talking about at Jeskovo your unit, the logistics unit, never entered
4 Jeskovo. He says you were a logistics person and you only went to Hoca
5 Zagradska, which is I think about 3 kilometres from the scene. Isn't that
7 A. It is incorrect that we were not there. I think we were the most
8 numerous in that barracks, although we were a logistics battalion.
9 Q. One of the things that's a bit difficult to understand about your
10 testimony is that part of the time you're involved in logistics and you're
11 driving a truck and you're delivering supplies to various combat units,
12 and then you claim part of the time you are a combat unit and you're
13 involved in all these combat activities which General Delic says couldn't
14 happen because you had logistics responsibilities when these actions were
15 going on to supply the troops that were involved in the combat. And then
16 you also claim that you spent time driving someone back and forth to
17 meetings. It seems that you were an awfully busy person. Is that all
19 A. What you said is incorrect. Do you want me to explain?
20 Q. Yeah, I think that would be good if you explain.
21 A. Before I deserted from the army, I spent two and a half members as
22 a -- two and a half months as a member of the Combat Group 2 in Damjane.
23 I spent over two months there and I knew things sufficiently well.
24 Second of all, when I was returned by the army to the same unit, I
25 was not made part of any combat groups, but I supplied food and water.
1 Therefore, every third day I brought supplies to all combat groups. I can
2 explain further if you wish.
3 Q. I think that's good enough. I need to tell you so you can have a
4 chance to comment about it that General Delic told the Judges in the
5 Milosevic case at 41777 that basically everything you were saying was
6 complete nonsense, that you couldn't possibly have seen or observed any of
7 the things you claim to have observed, partly because you weren't there,
8 partly because they did not happen.
9 And one of the things that General Delic referred to was a report,
10 a writing, it's a little vague, but apparently from an Albanian -- Kosovo
11 Albanian writer about a KLA commander, and this is 41779, who spoke in the
12 book about the KLA heroes who were killed there at Jeskovo that day and
13 listed their names of those people. He said: "They are soldiers
14 belonging to the special unit of the 125th Brigade of the operative zone
15 of Pastrik. It was a great loss indeed because the fighting was head to
16 head at a distance of 15 to 20 metres."
17 Now, I take it that you deny that that KLA officer is telling the
18 truth about what happened there at Jeskovo?
19 A. That is incorrect.
20 Q. And the OSCE, Organisation For Security and Cooperation in Europe,
21 as part of the Kosovo Verification Mission, made a report about what had
22 happened there in Jeskovo that day?
23 MR. ACKERMAN: And, Your Honour, the electronic data system was
24 not available to me over the weekend for reasons I still don't understand.
25 So what I have is a couple of pages from ""As Seen, As Told"" but
1 apparently it's going into the system -- it's been found and will go into
2 the system by the Lazarevic group today, the actual report, but what I
3 have is an account from that from "As Seen, As Told."
4 Q. And, Mr. Witness, here is -- this was also presented to the
5 Milosevic Chamber by General Delic. Here's what OSCE said about Jeskovo.
6 "On 11 March the security forces conducted a joint operation
7 against the UCK in Jeskovo south-west of Prizren. The VJ deployed in Hoca
8 Zagradska, Bilusa, and Bijac. Approximately eight tanks with armoured
9 personnel carriers, artillery, and mortars were used by the VJ. The
10 OSCE/KVM verifiers observed," indicating they were there and
11 watching, "a heavy bombardment of Jeskovo and reported buildings burning.
12 The UCK was reported to have responded by mounting an attack in the area
13 of Zociste using mortars and heavy machine-guns. The OSCE/KVM Prizren
14 regional centre commented that the UCK had infiltrated into Jeskovo, a
15 previously deserted village."
16 Now, the OSCE is indicating that that village was deserted except
17 for KLA that had moved in there, UCK that had moved in there, and yet
18 you're telling us that people killed there were civilians. You're just
19 not telling the truth, are you?
20 A. How can a village be deserted if there was another village 2 to 3
21 kilometres away which was full and there we took all the people out of the
22 houses and we searched the houses for terrorists, and then there was the
23 next village. We went through all those villages; therefore, how could
24 the first one have been empty? I cannot understand. Before Jeskovo,
25 there were two villages from which we took all of the villagers out of and
1 we searched all their -- all of their houses in those two villages. As
2 for Jeskovo to be deserted, well, in such a context I fail to understand.
3 Q. Well, you didn't answer my question. The OSCE --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Your question, Mr. Ackerman, is not one to which
5 you're likely to get an answer that's going to assist us.
6 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, are you referring to my question
7 as: "You're just not telling the truth, are you?"
8 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the one, yes. It's so often viewed by
9 witnesses here as an assertion rather than a question and you inevitably
10 find that the answer is tangential to the question, and even if he had
11 answered the question where would it have taken us?
12 MR. ACKERMAN: Well, he could have said: You're correct, I'm not
13 telling the truth," and that would have taken us quite a way, wouldn't
15 Q. During that testimony in Milosevic by General Delic, he was asked
16 by Judge Robinson why he thought you would come there and tell a pack of
17 lies. And what he said was, and I quote him -- actually, he testified
18 precisely to confirm the allegations made by Witness K41, who protected
19 him at the time from police prosecution due to the crime he committed.
20 "He was probably given a promise that if he testified he would perhaps be
21 removed from the country and that he would get away from the arm of
23 Now, one of the things that General Delic said in that answer was
24 you were probably given a promise of relocation so as to avoid the arm of
25 justice. What I want to know is: Have you been promised relocation?
1 Have you been given relocation?
2 A. Who was to promise us anything? No one promised us anything. I
3 and K41 live 250 kilometres apart. We have no contact. After the army we
4 went home together, but the only contact or the initial contact we had was
5 when I asked him to come and testify. As for the stories of us being
6 criminals, well, that is simply incorrect.
7 Q. You didn't answer my question. My question was: Did you -- have
8 you been relocated or have you been promised that you would be relocated?
9 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours, the witness answered this question.
10 He said: "No one promised us anything."
11 JUDGE BONOMY: That's what I heard, Mr. Ackerman.
12 MR. ACKERMAN: That may be part of the question, Your Honour. The
13 other part was: Has he been relocated?
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Can you deal with that, please.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, we have not been relocated. I
16 never asked for any relocations and he didn't either. Are you happy with
17 the answer now?
18 MR. ACKERMAN:
19 Q. Yeah, I'm really happy with that answer and I'm just about to tell
20 you why. You gave a statement on the 20th of June, 2003, to interviewer
21 Barney Kelly, and page 28 of that statement you said --
22 MS. MOELLER: Your Honours --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ackerman, just a moment, please.
24 Ms. Moeller.
25 MS. MOELLER: If we are going into the circumstances, the personal
1 circumstances of this witness, I would want to have this in private
2 session, because you know the background of the witness and I think there
3 is a danger that his identity may be disclosed otherwise.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ackerman.
5 MR. ACKERMAN: I am aware of that, and I'll go into private
6 session when we need to. We don't need to now.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
8 MR. ACKERMAN:
9 Q. Before I was interrupted I was telling you that I was very happy
10 you gave me that answer, because you'd been interviewed by Barney Kelly on
11 the 20th of June, 2003, where in paragraph 28 you told him: "I will agree
12 to testify in The Hague if I am relocated." You just told us you'd never
13 asked for relocation. That wasn't the truth, was it? You told the Judges
14 an untruth, didn't you?
15 A. No. I'll explain. He asked me whether -- or rather, I asked him
16 if I could go on to a third country to be relocated if my identity became
17 known, and he said, "Well, it's up to you to decide, but I'm not sure you
18 will be given a relocation to another state since we have no such
19 programmes in place." That's what he explained to me; however, I did -- I
20 did ask for that.
21 Q. You know, a little while ago you told us you didn't ask for that
22 and now you're telling us you did. And I was quoting from a statement
23 that has your signature on every page, and I'd be very happy to show it to
24 you if you'd want to see it. If you deny your signature is on every page,
25 I'm going to insist you look at it. Do you deny that?
1 A. I can't recall exactly how things went that day when I gave the
2 statement. I can't recall him making any promises as for the relocation.
3 However, I deny your claims.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Where's the disagreement here, Mr. Ackerman? The
5 witness is saying he did ask for relocation.
6 MR. ACKERMAN: The disagreement, Your Honour, is right before I
7 asked him about that statement, he told you he didn't ask for relocation.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, I understand that. But why is it you're now
9 emphasising he signed every page of the statement when he agrees with the
11 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, he's waffled about it. I'd like to
12 find it before --
13 JUDGE BONOMY: No, but you're putting to him from the
14 statement: "I will agree to testify in The Hague if I'm relocated." And
15 in answer to your later question he said that: "Yes, I did ask for that."
16 We don't seem to be disagreeing about anything.
17 MR. ACKERMAN: He says that came as a result of --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, I understand he made an explanation for that,
19 but you won't get an answer to that in the statement that he has signed.
20 MR. ACKERMAN: All right, all right. I'm finished.
21 I think now is a time when we probably do need to go into private
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well.
24 [Private session]
11 Pages 10535-10544 redacted. Private session
12 [Open session]
13 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.
14 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] .
15 Q. You were asked about testifying and about being relocated. Did I
16 understand you correctly in terms of the previous testimony you gave and
17 the statement that you gave, that you have relatives who are Albanians.
18 Is that right?
19 A. I do not have any Albanian relatives.
20 Q. On page 8290 in your previous testimony, when you say that
21 everybody were -- was shouting at you, "You fool, don't go to Kosovo. You
22 see that there is a war going on there. That's what most people said, and
23 I agreed. I decided not to go back and I have quite a few Albanian
25 A. I live in a place where there are Albanians. Do you understand
1 that? Secondly, if I as a Bosniak go there, I mean, since we have the
2 same faith. If I went to wage war against Albanians, they thought that I
3 was doing it on purpose, you see. That's why I said that. If I go to
4 Kosovo, the Albanians are going to treat me -- well, they're not going to
5 like me. Do you understand me? Do we understand each other?
6 Q. Yes, we understand each other, and my next question was and you
7 said now that your own setting is primarily Muslim and Albanian. Without
8 referring to the actual place that you live in, can you tell me what the
9 percentage of the Albanian and the Muslim population is and what
10 percentage of the population is Orthodox?
11 A. This is the way it is: 70 per cent are Bosniaks, 10 per cent are
12 Serbs, and the rest are Albanians. That's the way it should be.
13 Q. Isn't it correct then, Mr. K54, that you are not afraid of the 10
14 per cent of the Serbs that are there, if we take into account your
15 testimony, but that you are afraid of the 90 per cent of Albanians and
16 Muslims if you do not testify in accordance with their will. Isn't that
17 more correct than what you said previously?
18 A. You listen to me. I'm not afraid of my own people. I'm afraid
19 only of those people who are not my own and this time I went -- well,,
20 allegedly, to speak against those 10 per cent. That's the way they see
21 it. Do we understand each other?
22 Q. So you're in fear of this 10 per cent, that they are going to find
23 out about your testimony?
24 A. Well, I'll tell you one thing, those 10 per cent are like 100 per
25 cent down there. They do any kind of thing. Do we understand each other?
1 Q. Yes, yes, we do. However, you will have to pause between my
2 question and your answer because we speak the same language. You said
3 just now that the captain who we mentioned - we are not going to mention
4 his name now because we are not in private session - you said that he
5 liked you to drive him because you were the oldest driver. What does that
6 mean in terms of age or experience or what?
7 A. Age and experience. He was full of fear as far as driving was
8 concerned. He liked to be driven by somebody who knew how to drive well,
9 and he established that I was the one. (redacted)
11 well, you know, he took me everywhere with him.
12 Q. When you say "in terms of experience," how long was your
13 experience as a driver?
14 A. I have been driving since 1994 -- actually, I got my licence that
15 year, but I started driving two or three years before that.
16 Q. So your experience goes as far back as 1994.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. How did you complete a fast-track course in Kraljevo, which lasted
19 two and a half months, as you mention in your statement on paragraph 2,
20 paragraph 1?
21 A. I am surprised by that, too.
22 Q. I don't understand. You had your driver's licence since 1994, but
23 then you decided to attend a driver's course and it lasted for two and a
24 half months.
25 A. It was a surprise for me to have to undergo such training because
1 I knew all those things.
2 Q. But you said to the officers that you know how to drive.
3 A. And based on the driver's licence they can see the category of
4 vehicle I was permitted to drive. They were probably not that stupid so
5 as to fail to see which categories of vehicles I could operate.
6 Q. Therefore, you underwent a fast-track training because, as you
7 said, you have been driving since 1994 and the complete training would
8 otherwise have taken six months.
9 A. Yes, it lasted for only two and a half.
10 Q. And that's because you had been driving since 1994. Had you been
11 unable to drive, then what would have been the length of training, a year?
12 A. No, I don't know.
13 Q. Did you know that in all training centres of the VJ, according to
14 the programme, the training takes two months and 22 days for each
15 soldier. Did you know about that?
16 A. I did not. I know that I was familiar with the term of six
17 months. I knew of that. I knew that one had to undergo six months of
18 training because no training can be completed in two months.
19 Q. Is that your conclusion and your line of thinking, or did you hear
20 that from someone specifically?
21 A. I heard that from someone.
22 Q. From whom?
23 A. When I was in the army, the training is usually six months, but
24 they told us "We will shorten it because of the situation," and whatnot.
25 Q. Who told you that?
1 A. The officers in Kraljevo who taught us.
2 Q. What were their names?
3 A. I've forgotten their names. I can try to recall them, but --
4 Q. Very well. Further in your statement, in the following paragraph
5 you say, as you confirmed today during your examination-in-chief, that you
6 arrived at Prizren on the 10th of June, 1998.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. You spent a fortnight at the VJ headquarters in the northern
9 outskirts of Prizren.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. What was that headquarters as a soldier that you were in?
12 A. It was a barracks of Car Dusan Silni. I was a member of the rear
14 Q. Is it a headquarters or a barracks? You said you spent a
15 fortnight there.
16 A. Headquarters, barracks. For me it's a staff, a headquarters.
17 Q. A headquarters of what brigade?
18 A. Ours.
19 Q. What was your brigade? You spent over a year in that.
20 A. I can't remember. I really cannot recall. I even forgot the
21 military post where I was.
22 Q. But it seems that you remember quite a lot of detail about other
24 A. I remember the bad things. The good things did not stay.
25 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, perhaps this may be a
1 proper moment to break for the day. I see that it's quarter to 2.00.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Bakrac.
3 We need to go into closed session for the witness to leave the
5 We need to finish our session for today at this stage, but you are
6 required to return tomorrow to continue and complete your evidence; that
7 will be at 9.00 tomorrow morning. Meanwhile - and this is very important,
8 apart from the fact that some of the blinds aren't working - it's very
9 important that you do not discuss any part of your evidence with anybody;
10 that's either the evidence you've given or the evidence you may yet give.
11 You can talk to whoever you like about whatever you like except the
13 [Closed session]
18 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.46 p.m.,
19 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 27th day of
20 February, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.