1 Wednesday, 27 October 2010
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 12.06 p.m.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Good afternoon to everybody in and around the
7 Mr. Registrar, would you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon to
9 everyone in and around the courtroom.
10 This is case number IT-04-81-T, the Prosecutor versus
11 Momcilo Perisic. Thank you.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
13 Could we have appearances for the day, please, starting with the
15 MR. HARMON: Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon,
16 counsel, everyone in the courtroom. Mark Harmon, Salvatore Cannata, and
17 Carmela Javier for the Prosecution.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. And for the Defence.
19 MR. GUY-SMITH: Good afternoon to all. Boris Zorko, Chad
20 Deirdre Montgomery, Tina Drolec, Novak Lukic, and Gregor Guy-Smith on
21 behalf of General Perisic.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much, Mr. Guy-Smith.
23 Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith.
24 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes, we would now call our next witness to the
25 stand, Mr. Carl Bildt.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated] May the witness please
2 be brought in.
3 [The witness entered court]
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Guy-Smith, we see a second person coming in
5 with Mr. Carl Bildt.
6 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes, we do. I will inquire as to who that second
7 person is, because I do not know.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
9 May the witness please make the declaration.
10 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
11 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. You may be seated.
13 Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith.
14 WITNESS: CARL BILDT
15 Examination by Mr. Guy-Smith:
16 Q. Good afternoon.
17 A. Good afternoon.
18 Q. Before we start the proceedings today, could you please state
19 your name?
20 A. Carl Bildt is my name.
21 Q. And I see that you have somebody with you in attendance in court.
22 Could you please identify who that individual is for us?
23 A. Mrs. Anette Brolenius.
24 Q. And could we understand in what capacity is Ms. Brolenius here?
25 A. She is from the Embassy -- the Swedish Embassy in The Hague
1 Q. Do I understand that you require her assistance during your
2 testimony here today?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Very well.
5 MR. GUY-SMITH: I trust that satisfies the Chamber's inquiry with
6 regard to the individual who is accompanying --
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Guy-Smith.
8 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you very much.
9 Q. Welcome to The Hague
10 A. Thanks very much.
11 Q. And thank you very much for coming.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. As I think we all appreciate, you are an individual who was
14 intimately involved in bringing to a conclusion the conflict in the
15 Balkans. But before we discuss those matters, if you would be so kind as
16 to give us a rough, not necessarily terribly extensive, indication of
17 your background.
18 A. In what sense?
19 Q. In the sense of a curriculum vitae.
20 A. In the sense of my curriculum vitae, I think that is fairly well
21 known. I have been member of parliament in Sweden for -- in the order of
22 quarter of a century, although that was quite some time ago. I was prime
23 minister of my country. I was intensely involved in different
24 international affairs. And what is perhaps of relevance for the Tribunal
25 is the fact that I was then, from early June, I think, of 1995, appointed
1 as the European Union co-chairman of the International Conference on
2 Former Yugoslavia
3 ICFY, which was a gradual process, but the de facto dissolution of ICFY,
4 and continued then in different, other working capacities as High
5 Representative in Sarajevo
6 of the Secretariat of the United Nations for the Balkans, But that brings
7 us into the Kosovo war, so that is at a later stage of the dramas of the
9 Q. Understood. And with regard to -- with regard to the EU special
10 representative position that you held, who did you succeed?
11 A. I succeeded Lord Owen who served from the setting up of that
12 institution, whenever that could have been, in 1993 or something like
13 that. And he had served for that period and I succeeded him in early
14 June of 1995.
15 Q. And with regard to the Dayton
16 you were one of the two co-chairmen of the Dayton peace talks, were you
18 A. I was. Or three, to be precise. I think there were three --
19 formally speaking, there were three vice-chairman, or whatever it was
20 called at the time, of the Dayton
21 who was assistant secretary of state for the United States at the time;
22 there was myself for the European Union; and there was Mr. Igor Ivanov,
23 who was the first deputy foreign minister of the Russian Federation at
24 the time.
25 Q. Above and beyond that service, it's my understanding that you're
1 associated with a number of international organisations and serve on
2 advisory boards for the centre for European Reform --
3 A. Well, did.
4 Q. Did.
5 A. Did. As foreign minister of Sweden
6 responsibility but the responsibilities to my country.
7 Q. That is the result of the recent election?
8 A. No. That is the result of the Swedish Constitution. That's the
9 way it is --
10 Q. [Overlapping speakers] ...
11 A. If you are a foreign minister or member of the cabinet, that's
12 what you are, nothing else. Then I have been quite a number of things in
13 the past.
14 Q. Okay.
15 A. But that was in the past.
16 Q. And in the past you were -- served on that advisory board, the
17 Centre for European Reform?
18 A. Among others, yes.
19 Q. The Aspen Institute?
20 A. Not to my knowledge. But I certainly attended a lot of the --
21 well, the Aspen Institute Italia, yes, quite, the Italian branch. That's
22 true, yeah.
23 Q. And RAND Europe?
24 A. Not RAND Europe. But I was on the board of trustees of
25 RAND Corporation in the United States.
1 Q. I see. I take it that you were then also a member of the council
2 for international -- of the international institute of strategic studies
3 in London
4 A. I was.
5 Q. You at one point in time, I believe, you had your own news
6 letter. I don't know if you are still doing that?
7 A. Well, depends on how you define things. But I have always been
8 fairly active on the Internet in different ways, newsletters or blogs or
9 whatever. So you can find my digital track record is rather extensive.
10 Q. And you have published a number of works?
11 A. Sorry?
12 Q. You've published a number of works --
13 A. I published a number of works, yes.
14 Q. And including in that, you published the book "The Country that
15 Stepped Out In The Cold" in 1972.
16 A. Mm-hm.
17 Q. "A Future in Freedom" in 1976?
18 A. Mm-hm.
19 Q. You're a citizen of Holland, Sweden
20 A. Halland, not Holland
21 Q. Halland, yes --
22 A. Halland is a province of Sweden
23 European Union and that's always a confusion, but anyhow.
24 Q. That's Halland with an A not with an O.
25 A. Halland.
1 Q. Yes.
2 A. Holland
3 Q. In 1991.
4 A. Mm-hm.
5 Q. "The Only Way" in 1991?
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Guy-Smith.
7 MR. GUY-SMITH: I saw the note.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: The court reporter asks that you guys slow down,
10 MR. GUY-SMITH: Sure.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
12 MR. GUY-SMITH:
13 Q. "The Only Way" in 1994?
14 A. Mm-hm.
15 Q. And finally, from -- for our purposes, a book which I think is
16 pertinent to our considerations, "Peace Journey."
17 A. Mm-hm.
18 Q. In 1995?
19 A. No --
20 Q. 1997.
21 A. 1997 in the Swedish edition and then the English version that we
22 referred to in 1998. Later in versions in the local languages but that
23 is perhaps not relevant.
24 Q. Could you tell us what honours or decorations you have been
1 A. I can't. If you had asked me I could have brought a list. But I
2 can supply that for the record.
3 Q. Okay. They do include, as I understand it, from the France
4 commander of the Legion of Honour?
5 A. I think that is the -- I'm somewhat uncertain about the rank,
6 but, yes. I can certainly supply all of this for the record.
7 Q. Very well. From Germany
8 A. As well.
9 Q. United Kingdom?
10 A. As well.
11 Q. Estonia
12 A. As well.
13 Q. And Latvia
14 A. As well.
15 Q. And if I'm not mistaken, you are also a member or were a member
16 of an organisation which I believe is called the Madrid Club?
17 A. Well, yeah, you can define that in different ways. Madrid
18 is an informal organisation of former prime ministers. I am a former
19 prime minister, but since I'm also serving cabinet member, I'm no longer
20 part of that. There are several informal organisations of former prime
21 ministers. I think there are three or four of them existing.
22 Q. And your present duties are?
23 A. Foreign minister of Sweden
24 Q. I want to go back now to 1995. And I noticed that you have with
25 you a number of documents. I take it there are things that you have with
1 you that you may need to refer to in order to refresh your recollection.
2 A. Yeah.
3 Q. Okay. I want to start in July of 1995. And I'd like to focus on
4 July 7th, if I could. And ask you if you recall where you were on the
5 7th of July?
6 A. I don't immediately but since I got my book here, we can easily
7 find it out. I had obviously been in Sarajevo on the 6th, and I arrived
8 in Belgrade
9 Q. And when you arrived in Belgrade
10 intend on meeting with at that time?
11 A. I intended to meet with President Milosevic.
12 Q. Apart from President Milosevic, was it your intent at that time
13 to meet with any other individuals?
14 A. Yes. Certainly. I met with diplomatic representatives in
16 still, I think, my intention was to meet with President Milosevic.
17 Q. Do you recall where you met with President Milosevic?
18 A. No. But I can find it out. It was in Dobanovci.
19 Q. And when you met --
20 A. It was his -- as you know, his -- one of the Tito places --
21 Q. Right.
22 A. -- that he often frequented just outside Belgrade.
23 Q. And in your meeting on July 7th with President Milosevic, do you
24 recall who else was in attendance at that meeting?
25 A. From his side?
1 Q. From his side.
2 A. Well, during the part -- the first part of that meeting it was
3 always the same. It was only his assistant by the name of Goran. You
4 would know the name, I would assume.
5 Q. And with regard to -- with regard to, just for the moment, the
6 subsequent meetings that you had with President Milosevic in the month of
7 July, would it be fair to say that this particular individual who you
8 have identified as Goran was present at all meetings with him?
9 A. I would say that there was apart from General Mladic, we might
10 come to that, no one else present at those meetings. I would not
11 necessarily say that this individual was present during every part of
12 every meeting. But I can say that there was no one else from the --
13 let's call it Belgrade
14 Q. And just so we're perfectly clear, when you say there was no one
15 else who was present from the Belgrade
16 you to take a look to the back of the room and see whether you recognise
17 General Perisic or not?
18 A. I -- I do.
19 Q. Okay. Now, was General Perisic at any of those meetings?
20 A. No. And I had no -- no contact with General Perisic whatsoever,
21 nor any knowledge of his activities during the entire course of the
22 Bosnian war. I had one meeting with General Perisic in -- after he had
23 left the VJ and set up a political party, I can't really remember the
24 name of it, in -- after the fall of Milosevic when I was in Belgrade
25 met with the different political representative, I met with him when he
1 was chairman of his political party. That was the beginning of 2000,
3 Q. Understood.
4 A. But we had no contact whatsoever and I really have no knowledge,
5 either direct or indirect, about anything concerning him during the
6 period of the Bosnian war.
7 Q. Very well. You mentioned General Mladic. Did you have occasion
8 to meet General Mladic?
9 A. Twice.
10 Q. Did you meet him on the 7th of July?
11 A. I think that was the case, yes. One of the occasions, yes. Late
12 in the evening of the 7th.
13 Q. And do you recall how that came about, did you request to meet
14 with General Mladic or --
15 A. We did --
16 Q. -- did he request to meet with you?
17 A. No. We did request. That was due to the overall situation at
18 the time. As I think you are aware, I was responsible for essentially
19 the political negotiations to get a settlement under what was called the
20 Plan B after the de facto collapse of the Plan A, which was the contact
21 group efforts in the preceding summer.
22 At the same time -- at the same time as we were doing these
23 political talks, which was my responsibility, the situation on the ground
24 had deteriorated quite considerably and one of the effects of that was
25 that the normal contacts that had been established or had been there
1 between UNPROFOR, the UN forces, either UNPROFOR in Zagreb or BiH command
2 in Sarajevo
3 after the Pale bombing sometimes in May. That had led to the fact that
4 there had not been any regular communications on quite a number of the
5 different issues where there was a need, according to the UN command, to
6 communicate, and I was asked to try to facilitate contact with General
7 Mladic -- or we asked President Milosevic, to be quite frank, to
8 facilitate a contact with General Mladic to see if there was any
9 possibility of re-establishing contacts between the UN forces and the VRS
10 in order to handle a number of different issues, notably the resupply
11 issue to the enclaves.
12 Q. Understood. You mentioned in your response Plan B. If you
13 could, in a brief form explain to the Chamber what Plan B was.
14 A. Well, I'm not quite certain but I'll try.
15 Q. Okay.
16 A. Plan A was essentially the contact group effort of -- well, might
17 go even further and say that the original attempt to settle the Bosnian
18 war after the outbreak of the war. There had been attempts prior to the
19 outbreak of the war in April of 1992 was it -- with the Vance-Owen Plan.
20 Q. Correct.
21 A. That collapsed in 1993, I think.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: And was the Vance-Owen Plan the Plan A?
23 THE WITNESS: No, no.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: It's just the Vance-Owen Plan.
25 THE WITNESS: Yeah, quite. Vance Owen. Then the -- what we
1 refer -- what I refer to as Plan A was the contact group plan in the
2 summer of 1994. Correct me if I -- 1994.
3 MR. GUY-SMITH:
4 Q. Correct.
5 A. Which had been the -- which was the product of rather
6 extensive -- the contact group had then been established by the way,
7 hadn't existed up to that time. It was established, and the contact
8 group had major difficulties getting agreement on a plan to submit to the
9 parties on the sort of take it or leave it basis. That was done sometime
10 in July of that year, if I remember it. It consisted -- and I have a
11 fairly extensive description of it in the book. It consisted primarily
12 of a map, but the contact group had not been able to agree on the
13 constitutional provisions. It was a take it or leave it. The contact
14 group said you either take it or leave it, and in case you leave it,
15 we're not going have any contacts with you.
16 Now this was accepted sort of by Sarajevo. It was rejected sort
17 of by Pale. I said rejected because Pale said, We want to see the
18 constitutional provisions. So since there weren't any constitutional
19 provisions, this was interpreted as a rejection, which it was, formally
20 speaking. That meant that, of course, in accordance to what the contact
21 group had said, contact ceased. The idea was then to go on the basis of
22 that for direct negotiations between the parties. The parties I can
23 describe as Sarajevo
24 collapsed and the Sarajevo
25 name, but not necessarily only him, was that accordingly there could be
1 no contacts with Pale, with the Bosnian Serb leadership.
2 Then after some considerable deliberations, I think, in the
3 beginning of 1995, I think it was in March, the contact group reached
4 agreement on what I refer to as Plan B. The Plan B was to go primarily
5 to President Milosevic and say, Try to get agreement on a couple of
6 different things. One was a recognition of Bosnia-Herzegovina as an
7 independent and sovereign country. Number one.
8 Q. Understood.
9 A. Number two was an agreement on the basic outlines of
10 constitutional structure of Bosnia-Herzegovina, two entities, whatever
11 they were to be called. That was a separate issue in itself, as well as
12 the principle of division of the territory according to the 49, 51. And
13 I think the third element, if I remember rightly, of that plan was that
14 as a part -- assuming that this was possible to achieve, then, of course,
15 the second stage was how to move from Plan B back to some sort of Plan A.
16 That is an implementation on the ground. And then one was going to force
17 the Pale leadership to do that. An element of that was that
18 President Milosevic had to agree to further tightening of the ordered
19 existing sanctions received against Republika Srpska. Those were
20 essentially the three elements of what I referred to as the Plan B.
21 Q. And with regard to Plan B, what was Milosevic's position with
22 regard to those three elements that you have mentioned about the plan as
23 well as the tightening of further sanctions?
24 A. Well, we had rather extensive -- not only me, by the way. I
25 mean, these negotiations had been initiated by the US diplomat,
1 Robert Fraser who had been representing the contact groups in rather
2 extensive talks with President Milosevic all through the spring of 1995.
3 I think they solved most of the problems, although not all, but then
4 there were some divisions inside the contact group and in the different
5 countries so it was not carried to fruition. And Ambassador Fraser
6 stepped down for a number of reasons and I took over, but, of course,
7 there were extensive discussions on all of these three issues. I mean
8 the, as I think the Tribunal is aware of, the devil is always in the
9 details. And here it was the details that were more difficult than the
10 overall scheme. The overall scheme was easier, but the details were
11 extremely heartily fought over for a long time.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: If I may just intervene here. Exactly when did
13 the Plan B start and for what was its duration?
14 THE WITNESS: If -- I mean, this was said before I entered but I
15 read -- tried to re-read my book on the flight down. Earlier of that
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated] 1995.
18 THE WITNESS: Early 1995, yes, after the -- because there had
19 been effectively been no peace attempts after the collapse of the contact
20 group plan in the summer of 1993.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
22 THE WITNESS: So then this was another attempt, another way
23 around the problem.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: So Plan B went from early 1995 to the end of the
25 war to the Dayton
1 THE WITNESS: Well, that's debatable because a lot of things
2 happened during the latter part of the summer, of course. You can say
3 that what happened, if you speak in terms of the plans, that we
4 effectively collapsed Plan B and Plan A into what became Dayton.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Or Plan B did also collapse?
6 THE WITNESS: Well, no collapse in the sense of merge.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure, fair enough. Are you able to say more or
8 less when it collapsed or when it merged?
9 THE WITNESS: Well, I think you can say that it merged with the
10 intensified efforts that were initiated after both Srebrenica and
11 Operation Storm, which was -- because from -- for a number of reasons.
12 We saw a deterioration in the situation, of course, escalation of
13 fighting -- well, earlier than that, as a matter of fact. And the summer
14 of 1995 was, in my opinion, the worst period of the war after the initial
15 period of the Bosnian war, which was in 1992. There was a number of
16 reasons for this and we need not go into that. And then for other
17 reasons that are related to other factors on the international scene,
18 there was an acceleration of the efforts, in that it was necessary to
19 bring the parties together. I would say that the critical meeting in
20 these respects was the meeting that took place in Geneva at some --
21 between the -- all of the foreign ministers of the region at the date
22 that I can't remember at the moment. That is in all of the records, I
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
25 Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith.
1 Yes, Mr. Harmon.
2 MR. HARMON: Just a procedural point. Could I -- I see Mr. Bildt
3 is referring to his book. I have a copy of his book with me. When
4 Mr. Bildt is refreshing his recollection, if he finds some point in the
5 book that refreshes his recollection, it would be of assistance to me and
6 to the parties if he could identify the page on which he has found the
7 point that refreshes his recollection.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Indeed. And another procedural point --
9 MR. GUY-SMITH: I concur with that. I have no difficulty with --
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: The other procedural issue here, Mr. Guy-Smith, is
11 that a witness is really expected to testify from memory and at each time
12 there's a need for refreshing memory there should be a clear indication
13 that --
14 MR. GUY-SMITH: Very well.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Indeed.
16 Thank you so much.
17 MR. GUY-SMITH:
18 Q. Just for purposes of clarification so we're sure that we're all
19 on the same page. Are you reading from the Swedish version right now or
20 from the English version so in case we need to refer to it, we can go to
21 the right page number?
22 A. English version.
23 Q. Very well. Thank you so much. Now, contained -- contained in
24 your answer there was one point that was, I believe, missing which was
25 Milosevic's response to the plan itself. The three components of Plan B
1 as well as the tightening of sanctions that had previously imposed, was
2 he in accord with that or was he in disagreement with that?
3 A. I -- I can't recall that I -- without going back in -- in the --
4 in the documents or the book and recall every single aspect of the
5 negotiations but I said we negotiated every single detail was difficult
6 to negotiate with him. Needless to say, these were difficult issues.
7 As to the overall recognition of Bosnia and Herzegovina
8 okay with him. But he linked that, of course, to the agreement on the
9 internal structure of Bosnia-Herzegovina and that was, needless to say, a
10 somewhat controversial issue. Eventually we ended up with the wording
11 that you see reflected in the communique coming out of the Geneva
12 that I -- that I referred to, and that was then directly taken into --
13 sort of fleshed out, you can say, in Dayton
14 principle he grudgingly agreed to. As to the -- what was called the
16 the most time on. It was already in effect. But we discussed further
17 tightening of it in different respects. It was somewhat difficult to
18 tighten but anyhow there might have been different ways that you could do
20 Q. I notice the noticeable absence of one name from -- from your
21 discussion and I mention the name and then I want to go back to the issue
22 of meeting Mladic on July 7th. But I noted the notable absence of the
23 name of President Karadzic from your discussion.
24 A. Mm-hm.
25 Q. Was there a reason for that?
1 A. There was the reason that I mentioned, that after the collapse of
2 the contact group plan, which had been on the take it or leave it basis,
3 it was said, If you don't accept it, we're not going have contact with
4 you. The policy was not to have contact with President Karadzic. So
5 there was no contacts. I had one telephone conversation with him during
6 the entire period that I was involved in the Balkans. But we had no -- I
7 had no contacts with him whatsoever. There were other contacts with him
8 but they were not by me.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: I guess you're referring to the 7th of July, 1995
10 when you say the name of President Karadzic is not mentioned?
11 MR. GUY-SMITH: I'm referring to the negotiations that are extant
12 throughout this period.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Oh. Okay.
14 MR. GUY-SMITH:
15 Q. With regard to the answer that you have just given, which is that
16 the policy was not to have contact with President Karadzic, could you
17 identify for us whose policy that was? And I will use the term
18 internationals generically, but I don't know whether that is necessarily
19 accurate for purposes of the decision that was being made after his
20 refusal to take -- to take up the contact group plan in the initial
22 A. No, it -- this was essentially the policy of the contact group.
23 There were, however, other contacts. I think that during the summer
24 there was a contact from -- I think, the Russian Federation sent an envoy
25 to Pale at some point in time. So there were exceptions to the rule, but
1 from our side, we were sort of conducting negotiations at the time. We
2 didn't not have any contacts.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: I might ask then who were the parties to the
4 negotiations under the auspices of this contact group. The reason I'm
5 asking you is you say you had no contact with Karadzic. And my question
6 would be: Who represented the Republika Srpska in those negotiations?
7 THE WITNESS: No one.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Hmm.
9 THE WITNESS: No. Because the idea, which was later, sort of
10 that was the way Dayton
11 President Milosevic and then for President Milosevic to use all of the
12 powers at his disposal to impose that settlement on the Pale leadership.
13 And at the end of the day, that is what also happened.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. So --
15 THE WITNESS: So it was an indirect approach --
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: So the contact group was really not a facilitator
17 for negotiations. It came with a plan. It imposed it on everybody --
18 THE WITNESS: Well, it tried to but failed. Because, I mean,
19 that was the idea in the summer of 1993, I think, yeah, end of the first
20 year. But when the plan was put on the table, you can -- historians
21 could discuss whether that was a particular perfect plan, and I might
22 have my views but that is a separate issue, but since that did not fly,
23 then we had a stalemate.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure --
25 THE WITNESS: In order to break out of that stalemate, then what
1 I consider -- what I refer to as Plan B, which was to use Milosevic in
2 order to impose the settlement on the Bosnian Serbs.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Well, for purposes my question, I'm really
4 not interested in what whether it was a good or bad plan. What I want to
5 know is how it was put in place. You've been using a "take it or leave
6 it" phrase in describing it. You have now used the word "impose," but
7 you are also saying, no, it was not something that the contact group
8 brought and said you take it and you shall have it, whether you like it
9 or not.
10 THE WITNESS: Well, that was the case in the summer of 1993.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Right.
12 THE WITNESS: Then when we come to 1994 and the autumn and the
13 Geneva Dayton process, as you're aware of, the negotiations in Dayton
14 a negotiation with President Milosevic. There was no sort of
15 Republika -- there was some Republika Srpska -- there was one
16 Republika Srpska representative or person on the delegation of
17 President Milosevic in Dayton
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: But Dayton
20 THE WITNESS: Yes [Overlapping speakers] --
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: my question is really related to contact group.
22 In the contact group phase, there was really no question of negotiation.
23 It was, You want to take it, if you don't want to take it, we've got no
24 contact with you.
25 THE WITNESS: No, we -- with the Bosnian Serb leadership, yeah,
1 quite. We had no negotiations or contact with the Bosnian Serb
2 leadership during that --
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: You had contact with Izetbegovic?
4 THE WITNESS: Oh, yes. Oh, yes.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: And with Milosevic?
6 THE WITNESS: And -- yes. And should be added for the sake of
7 clarity, I mean, President Tudjman in Zagreb because at this
8 particular -- to get the entire picture although it gets complicated.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure, sure.
10 THE WITNESS: A lot of the drama was associated with Republika
11 Srpska Krajina which eventually went into Operation Storm, which was
12 another of the major events. So I would say that even if a lot of our
13 focus is now on sort of the eastern front of Bosnian war, I would argue
14 that at the time there was even more attention on the western front, of
15 the drama there, involving also the Croats. And then President Tudjman
16 was a key actor.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure. but the point I want to establish is that
18 during the contact group period everybody else was represented but
19 Republika Srpska.
20 THE WITNESS: Yes.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Thank you.
22 Mr. Harmon.
23 MR. HARMON: Yes, Your Honour. I want to note for the record
24 that at page 17, starting at line 16, part of Mr. Bildt's answer was not
1 The question that was put to Mr. Bildt was: Whose policy was it
2 not to have contact with President Karadzic? And Mr. Bildt, I recorded
3 in my notes, answered: It was the policy of the contact group. What is
4 recorded at line 17 is the remainder of Mr. Bildt's answer and absent
5 from that answer is that it was the policy of the contact group.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: You are referring to line?
7 MR. HARMON: Page 17, line 16.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. You confirm that that was part of your
9 answer, Mr. Bildt.
10 THE WITNESS: Was it lost on the transcript?
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes.
12 MR. HARMON: Yes.
13 THE WITNESS: I don't follow the transcript so I don't know if it
14 was lost --
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure, but --
16 THE WITNESS: -- but I assume it was lost --
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure. No, no, the question is: Was that your
19 THE WITNESS: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: That was your answer.
21 THE WITNESS: Correct, correct, correct.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. So we put it back on the transcript.
23 Thank you very much, Mr. Harmon.
24 Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith.
25 MR. GUY-SMITH: Just for everyone's comfort, my understanding is
1 there always a transcript check and there's a manner by which all words
2 are captured. And knowing the individual who is presently reporting, I
3 know that's something that is done quite assiduously.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure. But we always --
5 MR. GUY-SMITH: I'm just --
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: We always also thank the recorder.
7 MR. GUY-SMITH: -- just trying to get some ...
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: If I may just mention this little housekeeping
9 matter in the middle of your examination, Mr. Guy-Smith, given that we
10 started at an unusual time, the plan is that we'll break at quarter past
11 1.00 for a lunch break and come back at quarter past 2.00.
12 MR. GUY-SMITH: Very well.
13 Q. We almost have Mladic arriving on the 7th of July. That's where
14 we were moving towards.
15 Did you have an opportunity to meet with General Mladic on the
16 7th of July Dobanovci in the evening hours?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Now is this the first time that there has been contact with
19 anybody in the leadership, be it political or military, of the
20 Republika Srpska, since the initial contact group plan failed?
21 A. It was my first contact. Whether -- and I said, to my knowledge,
22 there had not been any contact between the UN command and General Mladic
23 since May. Prior to that, of course, whether it had been with
24 General Mladic or his different representatives, of course, there were
25 fairly constant contact. But that is prior to my time, so you'll have to
1 ask others about that.
2 And then to make -- to go back to the original question, contact
3 with the Republika Srpska, which we discussed, I mean, in some formal
4 sense, well, more than formal, General Mladic was Republika Srpska. But
5 when I refer to Republika Srpska, I refer to the Republika Srpska
6 political leadership, de facto, Mr. Karadzic.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Should I then understand that while there was no
8 contact with Karadzic, there was contact with Mladic during the contact
9 group period?
10 THE WITNESS: Yes. But that was of a different nature.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sure. He was the military leader.
12 THE WITNESS: [Overlapping speakers] ... he was a military leader
13 and the UN commander on the ground, and, of course, there had also been
14 contacts on the humanitarian level. I mean, there were, as you are aware
15 of, numerous UN agencies on the ground trying to help people, and they
16 were in constant touch with other representatives in Pale and the
17 Republika Srpska leadership. So when I refer to it, I refer to sort of
18 full political talks with, de facto, Mr. Karadzic, who was in charge of
19 that. And -- sorry.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: And during that period did you meet Mr. Mladic?
21 THE WITNESS: No. I mean this is the first time which we are
22 coming to now, yeah.
23 MR. GUY-SMITH:
24 Q. When you met General Mladic on the 7th of July, could you tell us
25 what the nature of that conversation was? What were the topics that were
2 A. Page 53 is the -- the -- the description of the meeting and I
3 have really nothing to add to it because this was 15 years ago, and what
4 is written here I wrote down fairly immediately afterward. So this is a
5 more accurate description that I have in the book than anything I can
6 supply at the moment.
7 The idea was, as said, to see if there was the possibility to
8 re-establish a contact between the different military commands primarily
9 in order to sort out of the supply situation for the enclaves. And among
10 the enclaves, I would say that Sarajevo
11 were the focus of attention. And we had then asked President Milosevic
12 whether it was possible to get in contact with General Mladic.
13 President Milosevic said he wasn't certain but he was going try, and
14 General Mladic turned out, if I remember it rightly, fairly late in the
15 evening and claimed that he had come from far away. We assumed that was
16 western Bosnia
17 military drama, and he was also fairly taken up by the military drama in
18 the west at the time.
19 Q. I'll ask you since you referred to us page 53 --
20 A. Mm-hm.
21 Q. You say in the book and I wonder if this is -- refreshes your
22 recollection as to what your intentions were at the time:
23 "When darkness had descended over Dobanovci, another black car
24 swept up to the large house and General Ratko Mladic climbed out, dressed
25 completely in black. Milosevic had obviously called him. I let Mladic
1 talk. I wanted to know his mindset."
2 And then you go on, and you describe what you've described to us
3 here in your oral testimony.
4 A. Mm-hm.
5 Q. I'd like for you to take a look at the bottom of the page because
6 you make a comment that:
7 "He --"
8 A. Mm-hm.
9 Q. "-- lived in a narrow medieval world of injustices, revenge and
10 continual struggles."
11 Are you referring to your view of Mladic's --
12 A. Yeah. This is my -- these were my impressions at the time of
13 General Mladic. He spoke time and again about, quote, his people, as he
14 were some sort of medieval warlord. And my enduring impression of our
15 first meeting was that this was just what he was.
16 "He lived in a narrow medieval world of injustices, revenge and
17 continuous struggle. For him peace seemed to be an alien concept. No
18 more than a truce in an everlasting struggle against the injustices to
19 which history and the rest of the world had subjected his Serb people."
20 That was how I interpreted the mindset of General Mladic.
21 Q. In the context of that particular mindset, what progress did you
22 make on the 7th, in your estimation, with regard to the issues at hand?
23 A. Well, not -- not much has to be said. What he talked at the
24 time, of course, and I think I'm now 53 or 54, anyhow, but around there,
25 he wanted to -- he wanted to have a cease-fire which was fairly natural.
1 I mean, he was sitting on 70 per cent of the territories. It would be
2 fairly natural that he wanted to have that. He wanted to have a contact
3 with the command of the ABiH for direct military to military talks. That
4 was not possible for a number of reasons. I very much made the point to
5 him as well as to President Milosevic, needless to say, who was present,
6 during -- because I had spent some time with Milosevic prior to that,
7 because we spent quite some time waiting to see if Mladic was going to
8 turn up. Impressing on them that in order for there to be an end of the
9 war, there had to be a calming down of fighting, no fighting on the
10 ground because any further fighting would seriously disrupt the political
12 Q. With regard --
13 A. And also I stressed to him to try to -- I stressed the need of
14 military restraint on the ground. It was inhuman, I stressed to him, to
15 try to strangle Sarajevo
16 not object but asked why the UN did nothing to stop what the Croat army
17 was doing along the Dinara mountains. I remember that. He kept coming
18 back to Dinara all the time.
19 Q. This leaves you, I think, in somewhat of an interesting situation
20 and you said he did not object. Did he indicate to you that he agreed
21 with your general notion of what I will call for -- for the purposes of
22 our discussion in a cease-fire or a stopping? And I'm talking about
23 orally. A stopping of military movement? Were you left the impression
24 after the 7th that Mladic was going to stop?
25 A. Fairly obviously. I mean he was sitting on -- I think he was
1 still sitting on 70 per cent of the terrain. I'm not quite certain at
2 that particular stage. The tide of the war had turned. And another
3 thing that was fairly vivid in the debate at the time was that he was, of
4 course, suffering or Republika Srpska was suffering under the impact of
5 the Drina
6 divisions, but, I mean -- but he had very difficulties to get the
7 manpower to man his very long defensive lines. He was trying to get
8 recruits from Yugoslavia
9 were long. They were thin. They were under pressure. So it's fairly
10 obvious that he was very keen on a cease-fire at that particular time in
11 order to sort of consolidate what he already had, which was essentially
12 what he got in -- with a few exceptions, essentially what he acquired or
13 taken control over in the beginning, in the first year of the war in
14 1992, when his forces were in [indiscernible]. But then the tide of the
15 war turned and he saw that things were going in another direction. So
16 what he said was, from the purely military point of view, fairly logical.
17 Q. After your meeting on the 7th, both with Milosevic and with
18 Mladic, my understanding is that you left the region for but a moment and
19 flew out on the Saturday, the 8th.
20 A. Mm-hm. I did.
21 Q. At which point you had a series of meetings with various
22 individuals. I think perhaps including Richard Holbrooke. I don't know
23 whether any of those are critical to our discussion right now but I want
24 to keep us in a chronological order.
25 There was some discussion, however, I believe, with regard to the
1 status of UNPROFOR and the continued involvement of UNPROFOR in the
2 region that was occurring. And I --
3 A. Well, the first two sentences of -- that must refer to the first
4 two sentences on page 55, which just refer to the fact that on July the
5 8th, there was report from UNPROFOR in Zagreb to UN headquarters in
6 New York
7 particular day. Nothing that had anything to do with me. I just know of
8 the fact.
9 Q. You also note the fact on page 54, at the bottom of the page,
10 that threat of UNPROFOR withdrawal --
11 MR. HARMON: Excuse me, Your Honour. I'm going to object to this
12 manner of proceeding. I think we should proceed on a question and answer
13 basis. I find Mr. Bildt's book quite interesting but I don't think it is
14 productive to sit and refer to various parts of the book --
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: And read the book.
16 MR. HARMON: -- and read the book. So we if could proceed in the
17 normal fashion, which is ask questions. If Mr. Bildt needs to refresh
18 his recollection, he can refer to the book and he can inform the parties
19 that he needs to refresh his recollection, and then we can proceed from
20 that way. But I think we evolved into a system now where we are just
21 reading the book and --
22 MR. GUY-SMITH: We'll back away from that system.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you. I had referred to that earlier too.
24 And while there is this interruption. Mr. Bildt, I'm not quite sure that
25 your answer was captured as I thought I heard it. At page 26, line 13,
1 if you can look on the screen.
2 THE WITNESS: Sorry --
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Page 26, line 13 -- page 26 has just disappeared.
4 But it's line 13. Well, the first two sentences -- that must refer to
5 the first two sentences on 55, which just referred to the fact that on
6 July 8th, there was report from UNPROFOR in Zagreb to UN headquarters. I
7 thought you did tell us what the report was about but it's not captured.
8 THE WITNESS: No. But I said we were now really into sort of
9 fairly peripheral facts. It's just the fact that there was a regular UN
10 report. For some reason I have noted that in my book. I have no -- I
11 was not involved in any sort of way, and since I got a question, I
12 referred to the book and I read from the book.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
14 THE WITNESS: I failed to see that this has any relevance to the
15 case, I have to confess, but that is my view.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's the question that's put to you. Okay.
17 If -- to the extent possible, if you can just put the book aside and try
18 to answer the questions from counsel, and if you do need to refresh your
19 memory from the book, you are obviously allowed to do so, but at that
20 point everybody in court needs to know that you are now referring to the
22 MR. GUY-SMITH:
23 Q. I'm now going to move from the 8th to the 11th of July. With
24 regard to the 11th of July would it help refresh your recollection with
25 regard to those events if you refer to your book or do you have an
1 independent recollection sufficient at this time to be able to give us a
3 A. Your Honour, I mean, I don't have a sufficient independent
4 recollection so anything I would say without referring to the book would
5 be substantially less reliable than relying on the book. I mean,
6 that's -- because these were events and it was a very sort of rapid
7 sequence of events so -- and the book does record them fairly detailed.
8 Q. With that in mind, referring now to the 11th of July, do you
9 recall on the 11th of July who you were with and where you were
10 travelling from or to?
11 A. I wouldn't recall it if I hadn't re-read it in the book earlier
13 Q. Very well. Having re-read it earlier in the book today, is your
14 recollection refreshed as you sit here right now?
15 A. Yes, yes. I was going from Geneva, I think, to Strasbourg
16 meetings that had been planned. That was meetings -- there was a meeting
17 happening in Strasbourg
18 Chancellor Kohl of Germany
19 Kohl but that was on separate issues, nothing do with the Bosnian war,
20 and later with President Chirac. And then I had a meeting with the
21 foreign minister of Bosnia
23 Q. On the 11th, what information, if any, had you received with
24 regard to the situation militarily in the area of Srebrenica?
25 A. Well, during the 11th, when we were in Strasbourg, in the
1 European Parliament or the then buildings of the European Parliament in
3 of Srebrenica. The situation there had been heating up during the --
4 really since the Friday, if I remember, the date of that, I can't
5 remember that, but that is easy to find in the calendar. And I remember
6 also having sent a message to President Milosevic on the 10th, I think, a
7 direct message to him saying that he should be aware that any moves in
8 terms of Srebrenica would have seriously detrimental effects on the
9 political situation and could endanger the entire peace efforts.
10 Q. Now, with regard to the representations that had been made to you
11 on the 7th by General Mladic, with regard to the issue of continued
12 military action, how did you interpret General Mladic's statements to you
13 on the 7th when on the 11th you learned that, in fact, there had been a
14 continued military action?
15 A. I don't interpret. I just note.
16 Q. You just note?
17 A. Yeah.
18 Q. When you say you just note, what did you note in that regard as
19 it related to the statements made to you and assurances given to you by
20 General Mladic?
21 A. Well, that evidently things were happening on ground. That is
22 why we sent this message to -- or I sent the message to President
23 Milosevic with a very clear warning to him on the 10th. If I remember it
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm sorry, had General Mladic made any assurances?
1 THE WITNESS: That --
2 MR. GUY-SMITH: He had not -- he --
3 THE WITNESS: I don't think I mentioned any assurances, did I?
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: It's in the question. It's in the question. It
5 comes in the question.
6 MR. GUY-SMITH: It's not -- it's in his question.
7 Q. Would it be fair, going back to the 7th now, based upon previous
8 response, would it be fair that after your conversation with Mladic on
9 the 7th, that you came away from that meeting with assurances from Mladic
10 that there would no further military activity?
11 I understand your analysis with regard to the fact that he had
12 70 per cent of the region.
13 A. No. I did not have any such impression, no.
14 Q. Based upon your conversations with Mladic on the 7th, were you
15 comfortable in the notion that there would be no further military
17 A. No, I wasn't. I mean, I wasn't confident with anything at that
18 particular stage, I have to be quite honest, because we were in a
19 situation where things were deteriorating by the day in different parts
20 of theatre. As said, from roughly whatever, May or something, May, June,
21 we were in a situation of rapid deterioration of both the military and
22 the political situation. I wasn't comfortable with anything.
23 We were busy trying to sort of calm things down and trying to
24 restart the political process, but we were not confident about anything,
25 not comfortable with anything and things were going from bad to worse by
1 the day.
2 Q. Now with regard to the situation on the 11th, did a new factor
3 come into consideration with regard to the international response to
4 Mladic's attack on Srebrenica? And by that I'm referring to NATO or the
5 use of any kind of air support.
6 A. Well, obviously, I mean, the fall of Srebrenica changed the
7 entire equation because this was the first time any of the sort of
8 enclaves had been attacked and fallen. It had obviously very severe both
9 political and humanitarian repercussions, although the humanitarian ones
10 were -- turned out to be far worse than anyone was aware of at the time.
11 But it was bad as it was. Srebrenica had been the subject of acute
12 concerns ever since back to 1993 again, I think, when the safe areas were
13 established. So it was, of course, a major event, a major further
14 erosion of the overall situation that occurred.
15 Q. I want to back up for a minute. Before you took this post,
16 enviable or unenviable as it may be, in retrospect, were you briefed with
17 regard to the history of the negotiations and the historical situation
18 that had occurred on the ground from 1993?
19 A. I was briefed on the political negotiations, yes, not necessarily
20 on the situation on the ground.
21 Q. Did you have any information with regard to the concerns that had
22 existed in previous years, both militarily as well as from a humanitarian
24 A. On Bosnia
25 Q. Yes.
1 A. Well, I had prime minister of my country. I had received I think
2 150.000 refugees. I had been receiving them nearly on a daily basis. I
3 fought an election campaign in my country defending their rights to come
4 to the country. I was acutely aware of the suffering in Bosnia
5 to say.
6 Q. The reason I'm -- I'm asking you the question is because I want
7 to make sure that we have an understanding of not only the level of your
8 sophistication with regard to the issues that were of immediate concern
9 but also the history and your awareness of the history of the region in
10 that particular time, so we understand what you were juggling with while,
11 as you've put it, these events were unfolding and rapidly deteriorating.
12 With regard to the 11th of July, were any requests made to you to
13 use air power in reaction to Mladic's overtaking of Srebrenica?
14 A. No. Not that I can recollect. Why should they? I didn't have
15 an aircraft of my own even. I mean, I was not in any sort of military
16 chain of command.
17 Q. Very well.
18 A. The chain of command for the UN forces was a UN chain of command,
19 and I was not in the UN. I was the European Union. The UN was, of
20 course, separate. Mr. Stoltenberg, Mr. Akashi, Mr. Rupert Smith, and add
21 to that, of course, when it comes to air power they have a separate
22 arrangement with NATO and a separate chain of command. But I was not in
23 either of those chains of commands.
24 Q. You mentioned on the 11th that you had meetings with
25 Muhamed Sacirbey, the foreign minister, Sacirbey. Did you get any
1 indication from him what his reaction to was -- his reaction was to the
2 fall of Srebrenica?
3 A. We spent most of -- it was a rather short meeting I had with him
4 because obviously we were both running off in different directions. That
5 focussed to a very large extent on the need to get humanitarian help.
6 Because obviously lots of people and it was a question of their faith and
7 it was a question of helping them to de facto get out. This was the
8 subject of subsequent talks that I had also with President Izetbegovic,
9 because that was a somewhat sensitive issue, to help them with the
10 evacuation. But that was the -- primarily what was discussed.
11 Q. We have heard testimony that you told an individual on the day
12 that Srebrenica fell, that Srebrenica also Zepa and Gorazde would not be
13 defended if they came under attack.
14 Did you ever make such a statement?
15 A. No. I mean, at that time Srebrenica had fallen. So I couldn't
16 have made such a statement because that was -- had already happened.
17 Gorazde, of course, we did somewhat later try to defend or at
18 least threaten to defend or to be precise tried to deter attack on with
19 air power. Although whether that would have worked was debatable in my
20 opinion. Zepa was a separate story which is much more complicated. But
21 as I referred to in our conversation with Milosevic and Mladic on the
22 7th, we were very clear in our messages that they should respect the
23 rights, if you call them rights, of the -- of all of the enclaves, and
24 you had the three eastern enclaves. Sarajevo was also an enclave, you
25 should not forget. This was a period when the isolation of Sarajevo was
1 among the tightest it had been during the entire war period and we should
2 neither forget Bihac, which is also very isolated.
3 Q. Right. Understood. With regard to your conversations with
4 Mr. Sacirbey, did he indicate to you that Srebrenica was or was not a
6 A. I mean, needless to say, Srebrenica was a problem. It was a
7 major challenge both for the international community and for everyone
8 else because there was -- don't remember, 30.000, 40.000 people or
9 something like that under absolutely appalling humanitarian
10 circumstances, as well as a lot of other problems associated with it
11 which had to do with the inner dynamics of Sarajevo. And it was a major
12 concern in terms also of the supply of the UN forces there because, as
13 you're aware of, there had been -- I mean, the UN forces had not been
14 supplied for quite some time, if I remember it rightly, so they were low
15 on virtually everything. So it was one of the major concerns. If it was
16 the one, I don't know. But it was one of the major concerns.
17 Q. With regard to the effect that a peace negotiation or ultimate
18 peace settlement would have with respect to Srebrenica, did he voice to
19 you his position with regard to what would happen once peace was
21 A. Well, I -- going back to Your Honours' question about what I
22 remember and what's in the book, I have sort of very little
23 recollections. There is something in the book which I might refer to but
24 I have no independent recollections after 15 years.
25 Q. If you would take an opportunity to take an opportunity to take a
1 look at your book --
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. -- read it and tell us what page are you referring to.
4 A. Mm-hm. I think I'm on 56, but --
5 Q. May I suggest 57.
6 A. You may suggest 57. Thanks.
7 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note, could counsel please switch
8 off his microphone when not asking questions. Thank you very much.
9 THE WITNESS: Yes, I write here something about his reaction,
10 that he was somewhat calmer than even me. It might be that he had been
11 following the situation on the ground more closely than I had been. He
12 said that they knew that a peace settlement would mean the loss of the
13 enclave. Whether that is true or not, I don't know. Ask him. But then
14 he was deeply concerned about the humanitarian situation, appealed for as
15 much active assistance as possible to evacuate --
16 THE INTERPRETER: Could Mr. Bildt please read slower. Thank you.
17 THE WITNESS: [Previous translation continues] ... I could. He
18 appealed for as much active assistance as possible to evacuate the
19 refugees and to help him in this very difficult situation. I eagerly
20 promised to do whatever I could in this respect.
21 MR. GUY-SMITH:
22 Q. Thank you for that response.
23 MR. GUY-SMITH: And I note the time, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much. We will take the break until
25 quarter past 2.00. Thank you very much.
1 THE WITNESS: Is that necessary?
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Well, the staff must go for lunch. They have been
3 in court for the whole morning.
4 THE WITNESS: Yeah. I -- I -- just to urge you that I have sort
5 of fairly urgent at some point -- I'm happy to be here, no question
6 about, but I have some sort of fairly urgent government business awaiting
7 me in Stockholm
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: I understand that, Mr. Bildt. But the other
9 problem is that, as you may see or have been taught, the tape goes one
10 and a quarter hours and then they need some time to -- to clean that and
11 we've got to come back. As you might have heard Mr. Guy-Smith referring
12 to corrections that are made, so during the break they make corrections,
13 we come back. That's how it operates here, and unfortunately, using --
14 given the technology we use here, we can't do it otherwise.
15 So we will take a break and come back at quarter past 2.00.
16 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.15 p.m.
17 --- On resuming at 2.14 p.m.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Guy-Smith.
19 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 Q. Mr. Bildt, before -- before we start, I have been -- I have been
21 asked to speak up and speak more slowly, and it's also been asked that
22 you speak also a bit more slowly, especially when you're reading, because
23 you have a tendency to speed up, as we all do. So if we could just keep
24 that in mind, I think that we then might avoid some of the interruptions
25 that we've had thus far and we'd make a number of the staff much happier
1 and we'd have a more complete record.
2 With that in mind, I'd like to know whether or not you ever
3 engaged in discussions or approached anyone concerning the trade of the
4 eastern enclaves for Sarajevo
5 settlement process.
6 A. No. The eastern enclaves, no. As you -- there obviously had
7 been a lot of discussion during the course of the negotiations on the
8 territorial question. May I remind you that I was brought in early June
9 of 1995. My focus, what I was asked to do was really to negotiate some
10 of the political aspects of it. I did not go into, neither had I the
11 mandate to go into, the territorial issues. They came, of course, to the
12 forefront somewhat later, when we approached Dayton, when it was a
13 question of sorting out of map. I mean, to decide what was the 49 and
14 51, and was then the subject of rather intense discussions in Dayton
15 There was also -- but that was not me. There was also, of
16 course, a subsequent American attempt to present some sort of preliminary
17 map, but I was never involved in that.
18 Q. We have previously heard testimony that, with regard to the trade
19 of the eastern enclaves for Sarajevo
20 He never initiated, and he would have, he was approached by you with
21 regard to the concept of trade of the eastern enclaves for Sarajevo
23 Is that statement an accurate or true statement, that you
24 approached any individuals?
25 A. Whom should I have approached?
1 Q. Well, put it in -- in these terms. That during the time that you
2 were involved with negotiations concerning the peace settlement, you have
3 mentioned a number of individuals that you spoke with.
4 A. Mm-hm.
5 Q. I am constrained by certain procedural rules from mentioning any
6 specific names. So the question is: Do you have any independent
7 recollection of ever dealing with, for example, anybody of the Republika
8 Srpska side in which you approached them with regard to the issue of
9 trading the eastern enclaves for Sarajevo
10 then I will go through each group.
11 A. Well, as said, we did not have -- go back to what we said
12 earlier, during this particular phase we didn't have any contacts of that
13 sort --
14 Q. Very well.
15 A. -- with the representatives of Republika Srpska.
16 Q. Now with regard to the Bosnia-Herzegovina side, did you ever
17 approach any individuals on the Bosnia-Herzegovina side with regard to
18 the same issue, once again that being --
19 A. No, because we were -- as said, my focus was on the political
20 part of the settlement, which was the recognition of Bosnia-Herzegovina,
21 it was the internal structure of Bosnia-Herzegovina, while sort of the
22 territorial issues which had been dealt with with the contact group map,
23 summer of 1993, was left aside for the time being. They were later to
24 resurface, needless to say.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's the 51, 49?
1 THE WITNESS: The 59, 41 [sic]. And how to implement, sort of,
2 that particular thing. That was the focus of a lot of the Dayton talks,
3 by the way.
4 MR. GUY-SMITH:
5 Q. Very well. I want to take us up to the 14th of July, if I could.
6 A. Mm-hm.
7 Q. And ask you if you can recall, as you sit here today, where you
8 were on the 14th of July, 1995?
9 A. Well, I arrived in Belgrade
10 meeting with, among others, President Milosevic. I'd had number of
11 scheduled meetings with him fairly frequently as part of the negotiation,
12 so this was the next scheduled meeting that was going take place, on
13 Friday, the 14th of July.
14 Q. And with regard to the meeting on the 14th of July, can you tell
15 us who else was present during that meeting?
16 A. There were a series of meetings during the 14th and the 15th,
17 which quite certainly --
18 Q. Very well.
19 A. -- you're aware of. And my recollection might not be perfect on
20 exactly the sequence of different meetings but I think that it started
21 with me meeting -- well, it started with me having other meetings of the
22 diplomatic community, and in Belgrade
23 with other places to prepare for -- because we were then in a completely
24 different situation that had to do with the fall of Srebrenica. So it
25 was a question of internationally calibrating the message that we're
1 going to give to President Milosevic. But as -- then I assume that my
2 meeting with President Milosevic was the same format as usual --
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. --
4 MR. GUY-SMITH:
5 Q. Let me interrupt me just a --
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Bildt, if you can come closer to the
7 microphone --
8 THE WITNESS: And be slower.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: And be slower. If you look at that screen, the
10 stenographer says can you please come closer to the microphone.
11 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry. I'm sorry.
12 Yes, the different meetings on July 14th and 15th. Arriving in
14 and I used the diplomatic facilities available to me to communicate with
15 key capitals, notably Washington
16 new situation after the fall of Srebrenica. Then my meeting with
17 President Milosevic, which I think was in Dobanovci as usual, I would
18 assume. I have no recollection of anyone else from the Yugoslav side,
19 I'd say, than the individuals that we mentioned previously being there.
20 MR. GUY-SMITH:
21 Q. That being the individual you've identified as Goran?
22 A. Yes, quite. Yes, I would have remembered if there were -- and if
23 I remember it rightly, there was is no one else mentioned in my book that
24 would have been.
25 Then, subsequently, at some point in time we had General Mladic
1 again. And then during the 15th, we had for follow-up meetings, of
2 course, quite an elaborate procedure of international representatives.
3 The UN SRSG, Mr. Akashi; the UN Special Envoy, Mr. Stoltenberg; the
4 commander UN BH command, General Rupert Smith; and from my staff, General
5 de Lapresle and General Elliot. And there might well have been others as
7 Q. With regard to meetings that were held on 15th of July, do you
8 recall whether or not an agreement was made or working points were
9 obtained between General Smith and General Mladic?
10 A. Well, there was a preliminary agreement made which was to be
11 ratified at a meeting a week later between General Mladic and
12 General Rupert Smith, which related to both access to Srebrenica, which
13 was to go into effect immediately, and access to the enclaves. This was
14 the first meeting between the Generals since at least May. And
15 accordingly, on the 15th, there was a rather lengthy and very heated
16 discussion between the Generals on both the situation, what had happened
17 and how to proceed. And there was the preliminary agreement along the
18 lines that I indicated to be formalised at the meeting I think a week
19 later that subsequently took place somewhere, in Eastern Bosnia.
20 MR. GUY-SMITH: If we could please have P2369 on the screen.
21 Q. The document -- yes, it is with us now.
22 A. Mm-hm, mm-hm.
23 Q. I'd like to ask you to take a look at this Prosecution exhibit,
24 if you would.
25 A. Mm-hm.
1 Q. Which consists, I believe, of three pages in total. Yes. And in
2 terms of -- in terms of, first of all, the first page, is that the
3 meeting that you were referring to that occurred on the 15th? Or one of
4 the meetings that -- let me rephrase that question. One of the meetings
5 that you were referring to that occurred on the 15th of July?
6 A. Yeah. This is obviously the cable from Mr. Akashi to the
7 then-head of peacekeeping, Mr. Kofi Annan, in New York, that refers to
8 meeting on Saturday, July the 15th.
9 Q. And this is -- you were discussing, as I think -- if I'm not
10 mistake, there was a long meeting between the two Generals, that being
11 General Smith and General Mladic. They had not met for some time. And
12 you mentioned that some informal agreement had been reached.
13 A. Mm-hm.
14 Q. There's something else that's indicated on the first page with
15 regard to the presence of Mladic at these meetings. Could you share with
16 us what the decision was with regard to it being made public whether
17 Mladic was involved or present at these meetings.
18 A. I think, as a matter of fact, if we go to the second page of this
19 particular document, which I recollect, it says -- yes. You read there
20 in the beginning, the specified agreement will be revealed of the meeting
21 with General Mladic and General Smith scheduled for Wednesday, the 19th
22 of July. For some reason which had to do with internal dynamics on the
23 Serb side, they wanted to have this in the public domain a week later.
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
25 MR. GUY-SMITH:
1 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... the determination was made
2 that it would not be in the public domain on the 15th. Mladic's presence
3 was being kept secret at that time for some reasons.
4 A. Well, most of the meetings -- yeah. There was no press release
5 on most of this, I would say.
6 Q. Since we are on -- on the second page, and looking at the very
7 top, it says understandings from Belgrade
8 and Herzegovina
9 understand it, the informal agreement that was made at that time as
10 between General Mladic and General Smith.
11 A. Mm-hm. Yes, that is correct.
12 Q. I'd like to focus on the Srebrenica portion of the
14 A. Mm-hm.
15 Q. The fourth paragraph down, which discusses that the ICRC shall
16 have immediate access to "prisoners of war," to assess their welfare and
17 register and review procedures at Bosnian Serb reception centre in
18 accordance with the Geneva Convention.
19 A. Mm-hm.
20 Q. Is there any further information that you can give us with regard
21 to this particular aspect of the informal agreement that was had between
22 Mladic and Smith? Was this --
23 A. No. With the exception that, concerning Srebrenica, the informal
24 agreement, which I don't know if that is specified in this particular
25 document, was that this should go into force immediately. And there was
1 set up, if I remember it rightly, some sort of point of contact for the
2 UN on the VRS side to arrange this. I think it was General -- was it
4 Q. Gvero?
5 A. Yeah. Whether it was UNHCR to get in touch with him or whatever,
6 I can't remember. But the UN contact with General Gvero that should
7 happen fairly immediately in order to implement these particular aspects
8 of it.
9 Q. Okay. And I --
10 A. If it --
11 Q. It maybe sound a bit foolish and I don't mean it to be, but with
12 regard to the understanding of -- to have access to prisoners of war,
13 what would the -- what would that entail in a practical sense?
14 A. You will have to ask ICRC and others because they had their
15 particular channels and I was not prior -- I was not informed about
16 everything. ICRC has a specific mandate and a specific role and they had
17 their specific channels and my role here, as indicated earlier, I was
18 responsible for the political talks. It was just that since the military
19 to military and other links had been broken down, I was just facilitating
20 these particular meetings and contacts at that particular time. But the
21 ones who were dealing with these issues was UNHCR, obviously, but also
22 ICRC. When it comes to what was defined as prisoners of war, that was a
23 controversial issue in itself, how you define a prisoner of war.
24 Q. And do you know what the controversy was there as between
25 Generals Mladic and Smith?
1 A. Not the -- I'm not aware of any controversy on this particular
2 point that you ask now.
3 Q. Okay.
4 A. They had a rather profound disagreement on the nature of the war,
5 needless to say.
6 Q. Needless to say.
7 MR. GUY-SMITH: If we could turn to the next page.
8 Q. And I'm specifically interested in the topic which is entitled
9 "Cessation of hostilities" for the first moment. Which is -- it says
11 "Serbs propose that all generals commanding warring parties be
12 invited, in the presence of Mr. Bildt, to discussions on a cessation of
13 hostilities agreement."
14 I take it that was something to happen in the future. And when
15 it says "Serbs propose" here, is that referring to the Bosnian Serbs?
16 A. I think we alluded to this earlier. This was a fairly
17 standard -- I don't know what he wants, but standard request by
18 General Mladic. As said, he, for reasons that I indicated, had an
19 interest in closing down the war. He was sitting on 70 per cent of the
20 territory. The tide of the war was turning, fairly obvious. He wanted
21 to have a direct link with General Delic, commanding general of the BiH,
22 and sit down with him and agree on this, and he wanted to us facilitate
23 that. That was obviously a distinct non-start because, as you quite
24 certain are aware of, at that particular point in time, there was a
25 breakdown between Mr. Karadzic and Mr. Mladic. I'm not aware of how they
1 were communicating, if they were commuting at all. There was an acute
2 political conflict between them, which is extremely obvious and extremely
3 public. So Mladic was operating from that point of view. Uncertain how
4 much but quite independently. While, of course, General Delic was in a
5 completely different situation. In Sarajevo these issues, the detailed
6 issues were dealt with by the political leadership, while, on the VRS
7 side, Mladic was in command.
8 Q. And when you say the details were dealt with by the political
9 leadership, on the -- with regard to the BiH, I take it you're referring
10 to the political leadership at that time being President Izetbegovic?
11 A. The Presidency.
12 Q. The Presidency.
13 A. The Presidency which was headed by President Izetbegovic. So it
14 was no question of them allowing, for good reasons in my opinion, sort of
15 the direct talks between General Mladic and General Delic. Although that
16 was what Serbs wanted, for reasons that are fairly obvious, or the VRS
17 wanted for reasons that were fairly obvious.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: I would like to satisfy my curiosity here.
19 Given the breakdown of relations between Mladic and Karadzic and
20 to your communication with Mladic, what hope was there of implementing
21 any agreement that might have come about between Mladic on the one hand
22 and any other party supposing Delic came, for one reason or another?
23 THE WITNESS: I do think that any meeting between Mladic and
24 Delic would have been a distinct non-start because the issues were
25 essentially political at this particular phase. So it had to be
1 political agreement on how to settle the war.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Let me ask my question slightly differently.
3 Given this breakdown, what was the basis for your pursuing
4 negotiations with Mladic as a party?
5 THE WITNESS: Well, we did not negotiate with Mladic as a party.
6 We negotiated with Milosevic. He was our party to negotiations.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: But he keeps on bringing Mladic to whatever
8 meetings you are having.
9 THE WITNESS: Yeah. Well, not to whatever meetings. No, no, no.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
11 THE WITNESS: No, I had extensive meetings with Milosevic. We're
12 just talking twice. And that was at our request in order to facilitate
13 the re-establishment of the military to military contact, which was
14 between the UN and the VRS.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
16 THE WITNESS: I mean, the UN forces were, of course -- they were
17 to some extent in between, as we know, so they were in need of constant
18 communication with the three armies on the ground.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: According to this exhibit that's on the screen,
20 Mladic is featuring quite a lot. There are lots of discussions between
21 him and General Smith. And in response to your question about the Serbs
22 proposing that all Generals commanding warring parties being invited,
23 you -- I think you said that Mladic was the guy who was making this
24 demand, because he was sitting on 70 per cent. This war was turning
25 against him and -- so it seems to me as if Mladic is the main player.
1 THE WITNESS: On the military side he was, on the Bosnian Serb
2 side, yes. Then our -- to be quite frank, at the time we could only note
3 the conflict that was there between Mr. Karadzic and General Mladic. We
4 saw it in the Bosnian Serb media and at some point in time, I can't
5 remember when, of course, Mr. Karadzic sort of dismissed General Mladic
6 as commander of the VRS. That -- and Mr. Karadzic appeared in uniform on
7 the streets of Banja Luka. He made himself a laughing stock by doing
8 that because it was obvious that the army units were responding to
9 General Mladic and not to Mr. Karadzic. But the exact nature of the
10 relationship was, of course, unknown to us at the time. I'm quite
11 certain that the different documents available to the Tribunal today
12 would shed light on that. But --
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Overlapping speakers] ... we --
14 THE WITNESS: -- at that particular time, we --
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: We have that light. I was just interested in --
16 if I'm -- and I'm not being disrespectful here because I'm just trying to
17 be as clear as I possibly can, what you hoped achieve by -- and when by
18 you, not you personally, the group that was negotiating -- the group that
19 is mentioned on this exhibit.
20 THE WITNESS: No --
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Or simply because he is a military head he could
22 impose his will on the political leadership, maybe was that the
24 THE WITNESS: No, not for this. He was in command of what was
25 the acute issue from the UN military side. I was facilitating those
1 contacts, as I said. I was not primarily doing them. But the acute
2 situation that was there was, of course, the situation of the enclaves.
3 And when we talked about the enclaves, the enclave that was really acute
4 was Sarajevo
5 was denying the resupply of all of the enclaves and he was tightening the
6 siege of Sarajevo
7 which were foremost in our minds, I mean, the population was suffering
8 heavily, this was -- and I remember in Sarajevo they were heading for the
9 third or the fourth winter of war at that particular time. It was also
10 the resupply of the UN forces that were in the different enclaves,
11 including in Sarajevo
12 document, but the most vivid discussion was concerning the resupply of
14 access with some limitations, because up until that time he had closed
15 all land access, and we and the UN had been dependant upon the -- both
16 unreliable, very limited and very dangerous route over the Igman, with
17 all of the problems associated with that. Here we got agreement to open
18 the road from Kiseljak into Ilidza. Although, as I think is somewhere in
19 the documents as well, the critical issue was supply of ammunition, where
20 Mladic was adamant in his use.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated] ... yes, Mr. Harmon.
22 MR. HARMON: I'm sorry, Your Honour, to interrupt. Just at
23 page 47, line 10, I'm not sure if that name is the correct name that was
24 correctly reported. I heard that name but I'm not sure Mr. Bildt
25 intended that to be the name and so I'd just like to clarify that part of
1 his answer.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Can you see that Mr. Bildt? Page 47, line 10.
3 MR. HARMON: Where it says -- I will read it, if you'd like. It
5 "When we talked about the enclaves, the enclave that was really
6 acute was Sarajevo
7 And I'm not sure and just --
8 THE WITNESS: No, Mladic.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Mladic was sitting --
10 THE WITNESS: Mladic was sitting on supply lines. Thank you.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: I did see it and I was wondering and I thought --
12 but either could fit. [Microphone not activated].
13 MR. GUY-SMITH:
14 Q. Since His Honour has focussed somewhat on the relationship as
15 between Milosevic and Mladic and Mladic's --
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: I focus between Mladic and Karadzic. That was my
17 focus. Not Milosevic and Mladic.
18 MR. GUY-SMITH:
19 Q. Since the Chamber's -- excuse me. Since the Chamber's focus was
20 on Mladic and Karadzic and necessarily with -- within that becomes
21 another issue which is the relationship between Milosevic and Mladic, I'd
22 like to discuss with you whether or not on the 14th specifically, you had
23 any indications of the ability of Milosevic to control Mladic?
24 A. Well, I -- "control" is a word that one can discuss in different
25 terms. But I vividly remember where he was not able to do it, and that
1 was the issue that I indicated. That is the supply of ammunition.
2 Because we had a need to get [indiscernible] from the humanitarian things
3 into Sarajevo
4 city. People were having very, very difficult situation. Supply of the
5 UN forces with everything you need. I can't remember how many thousands
6 there were but substantial numbers anyhow in Sarajevo. But the critical
7 issue was ammunition. They were running low on certain ammunitions.
8 And Milosevic -- sorry, Mladic took heavy -- after a while he
9 agreed that we could open up supply lines again. But he would not allow
10 lethal -- that is ammunition to the UN forces to come in. He took
11 particularly -- and I think that was caused by the fact that at that time
12 the UN forces had begun to be in certain respects rather tough. There
13 had been deployed, I can't remember exactly when, but some French heavy
14 mortars with artillery locating radars as well, which means that there
15 was the possibility certainly to do counter-battery fire, which had not
16 been the case before. And there had been, I think it is in my book
17 somewhere, case where this counter-battery fire had been deployed with
18 devastating effect, and that had impacted upon him and he did not want to
19 have this particular battery resupplied with ammunition.
20 I mean, perfectly logical from his point of view. But we were,
21 of course, insisting on that because the UN -- we had the UN, UN had the
22 right, Security Council resolutions, whatever legality, was completely on
23 our side. We demanded the right to resupply the forces with whatever the
24 forces needed. On this particular point Milosevic tried to say to
25 Mladic, You have to agree with this. The situation is such you have
1 agree to it. But I'm not -- I can't recollect exactly what was the
2 resolution of the issue because that went into the subsequent meetings
3 between General Rupert Smith and General Mladic and I was not prior to
4 the resolution of that particular conflict. But it was a fairly lively
5 one, I can tell you.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: But did you -- it is not a question of Milosevic
7 gives an order and Mladic carries it out. It was a question of
9 THE WITNESS: It was a question of Milosevic saying, "I think we
10 should do this." And on quite a number of issues you see Mladic saying,
11 "Yes, yes, yes," but there were limits to it. There were distinct limits
12 to it at some times.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
14 MR. GUY-SMITH:
15 Q. I picked up right after the -- Judge Moloto asked you the
16 question that you your first answer was no.
17 A. Mm-hm.
18 Q. You said -- he asked you the question which is not reflected in
19 the transcript which is why I'm asking. He asked the question: It's not
20 a question Milosevic gives an order and Mladic carries it out. It was a
21 question of negotiation. I heard you saying no. Is that accurate, did
22 you say no?
23 A. I don't know what I said. But -- but I wouldn't -- I wouldn't
24 call it negotiation either because then you have sort of two independent
25 parties negotiating. I mean, it was a complex relationship, and I was
1 only subject to two conversations between the two men. So my knowledge
2 of the relationship is somewhat limited. I had limited impressions from
3 those. But I can say that on a certain part of that it was Milosevic
4 said, This is the way it should be done or you ought to do, and he said
5 okay. But on certain other cases, he said distinctly, No, I'm not going
6 do it. And Milosevic could be quite firm against him and didn't really
7 help. Although, I, as said, Your Honour, I don't know what was the final
8 outcome of those particular issues but during the conversations that I
9 was part of it.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Let me ask this question.
11 Are you able to recollect Mladic's response to Milosevic's
12 statement that Mladic ought to allow weaponry to go through?
13 THE WITNESS: Not literally but effectively he was refusing that,
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: So effectively it didn't happen. He just
16 didn't --
17 THE WITNESS: [Overlapping speakers] ... I said, Your Honour,
18 what eventually happened a couple of weeks later, or one week later, at
19 the meeting between General Rupert Smith and General Mladic, I don't
20 know. Whether the resupplied -- but then, of course, things changed
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: And you don't know what caused the change there
23 but while you were there --
24 THE WITNESS: It did not happen.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: It -- that's --
1 THE WITNESS: That's correct.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
3 THE WITNESS: That's correct.
4 MR. GUY-SMITH:
5 Q. I get the sense from the number of interchanges we've had here
6 that -- and I'm asking, would this be fair to say that there were limits
7 to what Milosevic could get Mladic to accept?
8 A. It is very difficult to me to make a generalised statement on
9 such an issue because that is obviously a rather complex relationship
10 with very many dimensions to it. I can only refer to the two meetings
11 that I had, where the two meetings -- where the two men were at the same
12 time and those were the only two times I met General Mladic ever.
13 Q. Would it help refresh your recollection, with regards to the
14 specific question that I asked you, to refer to your book where you talk
15 about this? And that would be page 62. And starts with the second
16 paragraph: "In general terms ..."
17 A. Yeah. No, that's -- yeah. Now I read it that is exactly what --
18 that's roughly what I've said here previously. In somewhat more literal
19 language perhaps but ...
20 Q. So is it your recollection that with regard to these discussions
21 Milosevic was helpful?
22 A. Milosevic at that time was interested in -- in my opinion getting
23 a deal fairly fast for reasons that we don't need to go into. He was
24 aware of the fact that there was a very strong international reaction to
25 the fall of Srebrenica. And obviously it was his interest to be helpful
1 in order to moderate that international reaction. So he was helpful in
2 trying to facilitate the document that you saw here, the exhibit. Then
3 as a completely separate issue is, of course, to which extent that
4 document was implemented. And we all know the facts concerning that.
5 That's a later story.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Bildt, if you could just read, if it is a
7 short passage, that page 62 in general terms because we don't have a copy
8 of your book.
9 THE WITNESS: Sorry about that.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Not a problem. It's not your problem.
11 THE WITNESS: No, I said in general terms Milosevic was helpful
12 in these discussions. He knew how sensitive the Sarajevo issue was to --
13 THE INTERPRETER: Would you please read slower.
14 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry.
15 "He knew how sensitive the Sarajevo issue was to world opinion,
16 but there were limits to what he could get Mladic to accept. When
17 Milosevic joined me in pressing him to accept the complete freedom of the
18 UN to resupply its force in Sarajevo
19 banged his fist on the table, stared at Milosevic and said he would never
20 accept the bringing in of ammunition that the UN forces could use against
21 his soldiers. And indeed, the UN forces in Sector Sarajevo had started
22 to counter-attack with effect. The French heavy mortars were deadly in
23 their accuracy ..." and that's roughly what I said.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
25 MR. GUY-SMITH: [Microphone not activated].
1 Q. You say Milosevic fell silent and beat a discrete --
2 A. [Overlapping speakers] ... that was the literary language, yes.
3 Q. -- retreat.
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
5 MR. GUY-SMITH:
6 Q. I now want to move from that time. We have a problem here which
7 apparently we were overlapping and I wanted to just make sure the record
8 is clear here. On line 11, apparently, we started speaking over each
10 I said: "You say Milosevic fell silent and beat a discrete
11 retreat." And I believe your response was that it was -- that's what
12 your book says and it was a styled in a literary form. I'm using -- I
13 may be paraphrasing your language but I believe that's what the two of
14 us -- that's the meaning of that particular part of the conversation.
15 And if I can get you to answer, because a nod doesn't come up on
16 the --
17 A. Yes, sorry.
18 Q. Thank you. Thank you.
19 Now I want to move now to the 19th of July --
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Before you do that --
21 MR. GUY-SMITH: Surely.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: -- didn't Mr. Bildt also mention that Mladic hit
23 the table?
24 MR. GUY-SMITH: [Overlapping speakers] ...
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: I don't see --
1 MR. GUY-SMITH: He did. Did that not come up either?
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: It might have disappeared but I didn't see it.
3 MR. GUY-SMITH: It's there.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's fine.
5 MR. GUY-SMITH:
6 Q. Moving to the 19th of July, do you recall where you were on the
8 A. In Belgrade
9 Q. Okay. And at that time, when you were in Belgrade, did you have
10 occasion to meet Mladic again or have we now completed our meetings with
11 General Mladic?
12 A. We have now completed them because what has happened was that
13 then the contact had been re-established between the military commanders,
14 so at the same time I think there was the meeting between General Rupert
15 Smith and General Mladic and the discussion on the -- sort of the on the
16 ground issues were then back to the military to military, UN, VRS, ABiH
17 level. And I was dealing solely with the political issues.
18 Q. Now with regard to the situation in Srebrenica up until this
19 point, the understanding is that there has been a military assault on the
20 enclave which has been vigorously objected to, as I understand it, by you
21 and the rest of the international community. Is that fair?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. There have been efforts to obtain a cease-fire and an informal
24 discussion has occurred in which there are a series of points, speaking
25 points or actual agreements have been made between the two Generals that
1 are supposed to take effect on the 19th.
2 A. I -- I wouldn't necessarily say there had been efforts to obtain
3 a cease-fire. Because clearly that was not in the cards at the time.
4 Q. All right.
5 A. There had been -- General Mladic had expressed the view -- the
6 wish for such a meeting in order to discuss that, but clearly for reasons
7 that I have alluded to, that was not in the cards at the moment.
8 Q. So then --
9 A. At that moment.
10 Q. Understood. Mladic had in effect inserted a condition precedent
11 to there being a cease-fire which is the meeting with Delic which you
12 explained to us was not going to occur for a series of political reasons.
13 A. I wouldn't put too much emphasis on this because this was
14 really -- I mean, these comments of him were really a side show. It
15 passed by and it's a passing reference in my book only because I think he
16 knew also that was a non-starter, as things were at that particular
17 period of time. It sort of -- a couple of weeks later things were
18 different but we were -- we are now in an extremely dynamic and dramatic
19 situation --
20 Q. Understood.
21 A. -- as to the situation on the ground.
22 Q. Understood. Now, I believe it's the next day that you learn for
23 the first time about the events that you have termed and others have
24 termed as being the massacres in Srebrenica, the 20th of July?
25 A. Yes. Depends on what you mean. Srebrenica were quite a number
1 of events. I mean, we had the fall of it. We had the -- which I was
2 involved in then, trying to get people out, and -- and that was, of
3 course, primarily the women and the children. There was the convoys that
4 were organised and the receptions at Tuzla airfield. There were a lot of
5 problems associated with that that we had to deal with. Eventually that,
6 as we know, happened.
7 We were aware of the fact that there was a column trying to break
8 through. I can't remember exactly when and how we got our detailed
9 information about that, because things were obviously somewhat difficult
10 to get information on what exactly was happening at that time. And then
11 there were the fact that sort of the men had been separated. We knew
12 that from the women coming out. And then, of course, I think on the
13 20th, the first indication that the men had not been kept in custody
14 of -- but had been massacred or killed in large numbers. It was sketchy
15 information at the time.
16 Q. And that information, if we were to take a look at the meeting on
17 the 15th, in which a series of -- of negotiation points had been arrived
18 at, was obviously directly contrary to anything that you -- that you had
19 expected because there was, among other things, an understanding there
20 would be access to prisoners of war?
21 A. Yeah, but I wouldn't use the word "expected." Because in the
22 word "expectation" is the assumption that we believed everything that was
23 said. At that time, my experience was perhaps not as extensive as later,
24 but I was already aware of the fact that you should not necessarily take
25 for granted that what people promised that they delivered. So the word
1 "expectation" I wouldn't necessarily say. That did not prevent us from
2 trying to get commitments by people because there was at least some
3 possibility that they would implement some of it. But I can't really say
4 that when we found out that it was not implemented, that that came as a
5 complete bolt out of the blue and was out of the ordinary. I mean, there
6 had been -- my knowledge of the previous negotiating history was that
7 there had been, unfortunately, a lot of this before. That things being
8 promised and things turned out otherwise.
9 Q. Just to back away just for a moment. You have been involved in
10 negotiations, political negotiations, both at a domestic level and an
11 international level for some many years now. And would it be fair to say
12 that generally speaking with regard to the issue of negotiations and
13 statements that are made in a negotiation process, that it is not
14 necessarily the best thing in the world to rely on everything that is
15 being said?
16 A. That is somewhat dependant upon the situation. I wouldn't take
17 that as a generalised statement.
18 Q. With regard to the situation in the Balkans.
19 A. I wouldn't take that as a generalised statement on the Balkans
20 either. But I noted that I would not use the word "expected" for the --
21 what you referred to earlier concerning this particular situation.
22 Q. With regard to representations that were made by General Mladic,
23 would that be a fair statement?
24 A. My only -- as said, I only had these two meetings in order to
25 facilitate other contacts with him, so I never sort of went into sort of
1 true negotiations with him or anything of that sort. But I noted that
2 there were these -- you referred to the agreement that he concluded here
3 or the whatever you call it, with the -- with the UN commanders on the
4 ground, and we all know that those -- what he promised there, was not
6 Q. With regard to the --
7 A. Primarily on Srebrenica.
8 Q. Understood.
9 A. Was delivered on certain other aspects.
10 Q. With regard to the situation and ultimately the information you
11 received on the 20th of July concerning the massacres in Srebrenica, at
12 that time based on all the information that you had, was the situation
13 that occurred in Srebrenica foreseeable or not?
14 A. Which situation?
15 Q. The massacres.
16 A. The massacres or the genocide.
17 I think I write in the book and I think that is still my view,
18 that what happened in Srebrenica was even by the standards of the Balkan
19 wars surprising. It was -- I mean, this was an extremely brutal war. I
20 referred to -- my impression of General Mladic and sort of the medieval
21 mindset, I wouldn't necessarily say that he was the only one with that
22 medieval mindset when it comes to -- we have a concept of warfare in the
23 west, for better or worse, that is that we nowadays make a distinction
24 between armies and the population. That is the laws of the -- the laws
25 of war. That didn't really apply. So there were horrendous war crimes
1 committed throughout the war. I don't need to tell this here, by the
2 way. But even by those standards I think what was happening in
3 Srebrenica was unique in its barbarity.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: The question was --
5 THE WITNESS: Did we expect it.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yeah, was it foreseeable.
7 THE WITNESS: I don't have an answer to that. We -- we spent a
8 long time afterwards trying to see -- or others spent a long time
9 afterwards, but I'm aware that others spent a long time afterwards, where
10 the intelligence was available, on the attack and the answer to a large
11 extent was no. Was there the possibility of foreseeing what later
12 happened? I don't know, frankly speaking.
13 The only one that -- I think that's in the book as well, the one
14 when I started in early July -- no, early June, the one who sort of was
15 very worried about what might happen in Srebrenica was the Russian
16 foreign minister, Andrey Kozyrev, and the reason for that, I think was
17 the fact he had been Russian foreign minister for quite some time, so he
18 had been involved in Srebrenica in 1993 and was perhaps more aware than
19 many of the emotions and tensions surrounding that particular issue.
20 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you.
21 Q. I want to move a slightly different subject for the moment. And
22 that deals with whether or not you ever had occasion to be at an airport
23 where there were US air forces and Iranian aeroplanes delivering
25 A. Weaponry, I don't know.
1 Q. Okay.
2 A. Aeroplanes, yes.
3 Q. Could you expand on that a bit.
4 A. I --
5 Q. What you did see; where were you?
6 A. I think referred to one instance where at Split airport I noted
7 that lined up each -- beside each other was US Air Force that was
8 delivering equipment, whatever it could have been, for the rapid reaction
9 force that was coming in, and then there was an Iranian plane with, I
10 understand, an Iranian delegation of some sort.
11 Q. And when you say an Iranian delegation, do you know what that
12 Iranian delegation was in the midst of doing?
13 A. No.
14 Q. Okay. After the information that you received on -- on the
15 20th - I'm going to move forward now - I understand there were a series
16 of discussions with regard to potential use of air-strikes and a number
17 of other matters that occurred. But I want to move now, if I could, to
18 the 29th of July. 29th of July is a time when you received a, I believe,
19 specific telephone call.
20 A. Mm-hm.
21 Q. And I'd like to get some understanding of what happened there, if
22 we could.
23 A. I guess this refers to what is on page 69 and 70 of -- of my
24 book. I was -- I was in Stockholm
25 call from Mr. Muratovic, who I think was prime minister in Bosnia at the
1 time, and he wanted to meet with me urgently in Split. I was on my way
2 to see Chancellor Kohl in, I think, in Austria before, which I did. But
3 when Mr. Muratovic wanted to see me urgently, I knew it was something
4 important, particularly in view of the fact that he said we should meet
5 in Split
6 the war was not an easy thing, to put it mildly. So it was something
7 major that was obviously there.
8 We met at the airport at some point in time, and the conversation
9 was about Zepa. As you know the -- after -- after the fall of
10 Srebrenica, the Bosnian Serb forces concentrated or intended to
11 concentrate on capturing Zepa. There was a very close connection between
12 those enclaves, both, for all sorts of reasons. Zepa enclave was, as I
13 think you are aware of, very small but very rugged terrain and
14 [indiscernible] a very difficult place also from the purely military
15 point of view. I think there was a Ukrainian UN component there as well.
16 Well, there was some difficulty associated with that.
17 To make this long story short, Mr. Muratovic wanted my help to
18 communicate with Mr. Milosevic on the possibility for the remaining
19 HBiH [sic] units to evacuate Zepa to Serbia
20 surprising demand to me, but I said, I'm your humble servant, more or
21 less. If you think it is better to bring them out of Serbia and you
22 think that is safe, he said, We don't know, but can we get assurances
23 from Milosevic that he would receive our fighters. Because the -- if you
24 look at the map, Zepa is closer to Serbia than it is to Sarajevo
25 territory and obviously -- fairly obviously, I would say, Bosnian Serbs
1 forces were concentrated in the area between Zepa and Sarajevo, but
2 between Zepa and Serbia
3 I said I do what I can and then went and saw President Milosevic at the
4 fairly distant location, another one of these Tito hideouts or lodges.
5 And said to him this had to be a matter of extreme secrecy and said this
6 is the case, can you guarantee that your forces will accept these people
7 coming in. And he promised that. And I returned -- I sent that message
8 back. I can't really remember by which way but some secure way of
9 communication to Prime Minister Muratovic and eventually this is what
10 happened. They were later taken in by the UNHCR in a special camp in --
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: In Serbia
12 THE WITNESS: In Serbia
13 later after the war, because obviously Sarajevo wanted them
14 [indiscernible] come back to Sarajevo
15 number of them wanted to go elsewhere. And I think a fair number of
16 them, as a matter of fact, settled in Australia.
17 MR. GUY-SMITH:
18 Q. Only one quick matter which is I believe on line 17. It
19 should read -- page 61, line 17, it should read "evacuate the BiH to
22 A. The remaining fighters of the unit of the HBiH which was, of
23 course, was the locals in Zepa to large extent.
24 Q. Your labours are certainly not done yet in terms of what is
25 occurring at this time. And I now would like to move on and focus on
1 another issue, which is the issue of the French pilots who were shot
2 down, if I might.
3 First of all, do you recall when they were shot down?
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Harmon.
5 MR. HARMON: This is a subject matter that is not contained,
6 Your Honour, in the 65 ter summary.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Guy-Smith.
8 MR. GUY-SMITH: Mr. Harmon is correct in that respect, but to the
9 extent that it plays upon the ultimate issue of Dayton and -- I think
10 that it's relevant for the Chamber to have some understanding of what
12 I certainly don't think that it is something that the Chamber
13 should not be aware of. I appreciate what Mr. Harmon has said and to
14 that extent I do apologise to Mr. Harmon. I wasn't trying to pull a fast
15 one on him in any sense whatsoever.
16 MR. HARMON: I'm not sure what the ultimate issue of Dayton
17 this proceeding, Your Honour, so I'm not sure it's relevant.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's my problem and I don't know too. And I --
19 I understand you were not trying to play a fast one on Mr. Harmon, but
20 unfortunately --
21 MR. GUY-SMITH: [Overlapping speakers] ...
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: -- you've got to play the game also by the rules
23 and the rules --
24 MR. GUY-SMITH: Let me explain to you -- let me explain to you
25 precisely what I'm getting at which is that the French pilots were shot
1 done. There were negotiations for the release of the French pilots. The
2 issue of the release of the French pilots was something that President
3 Chirac made a, as a term I used before, a condition precedent to the
4 signing at the Paris
5 -- and that's the beginning an end of it [Overlapping speakers] ...
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Perhaps we must talk about the Paris conference on
7 the 14th and find out from the witness how it came about.
8 MR. GUY-SMITH: Sure, okay, fine. I'm just trying to -- trying
9 to help.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: In effect, it is more helpful if you do it the way
11 I suggest --
12 MR. GUY-SMITH: Very well.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: -- because then are you dealing with something
14 that you have given notice about and you can tell us how that came about.
15 MR. GUY-SMITH: Okay.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: And if the French pilots are part of the step
17 towards, so shall it be.
18 MR. GUY-SMITH:
19 Q. Let us move to the 14th of December, then, if we could.
20 Do you recall what, if anything, occurred on the 14th of
21 December that was of the moment?
22 A. There was the signing -- if I remember, the signing of the Dayton
23 agreement on peace, as it was called, for Bosnia and Herzegovina
25 in Dayton
1 along those lines, and was signed formally in Paris on December the 14th.
2 Q. And with regard to signing on the 14th, were there any conditions
3 that existed prior to that document being signed and that agreement being
4 entered into by the French government?
5 A. Not that I am aware of but I know that you allude to the fact
6 that they wanted to add the French -- there were some French pilots who
7 had been shot down and were held in -- by the VRS and that was obviously
8 a concern of President Chirac. I was aware of this through the media. I
9 don't really remember very much but I had no role whatsoever in that
10 particular procedure.
11 Q. With regard to your recollection of this matter, if you could
12 take a look at your book at page 167 and see whether or not that helps
13 refresh your recollection --
14 A. Sorry, in which page?
15 Q. 167.
16 A. 167. Okay. I'm happy to read my book.
17 Q. It's an excellent book, sir.
18 A. Thanks very much.
19 Q. And I'm referring to the third paragraph.
20 A. Yes, I said that, yeah.
21 Q. Yes, you did.
22 A. Yeah, true.
23 Q. And so we don't run into the same problem that we had before,
24 could you read it so that the Chamber is also aware of what's being said.
25 A. Should I read the book?
1 Q. Not the whole book, but --
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Overlapping speakers] ...
3 MR. GUY-SMITH: [Overlapping speakers] ...
4 THE WITNESS: That might help.
5 "We were rapidly approaching the formal peace conference in
7 place until two French pilots captured by the Bosnian Serbs when their
8 aircraft was shot down over Pale on August the 30th had been released.
9 There was no reason to doubt his determination to make the meeting in
11 THE INTERPRETER: Kindly slow down when reading. Thank you.
12 THE WITNESS: Thank you. Sorry.
13 "I had raised the matter with various representatives of Pale on
14 numerous occasions during the autumn." I stand corrected my memory was
16 "We knew, from the pictures taken, that both pilots had survived
17 and been detained. Even though there were some who believed that they
18 were no longer alive, all the information available to be indicated they
19 were still in Pale. Krajisnik played ignorant but promised to take up
20 the issue in Pale and keep us informed. Naturally he did no such thing.
21 Milosevic also said he knew nothing but promised to send some of his
22 special police platoons to Bosnia
23 telling the truth, I don't know, but his reference to the ability of his
24 special police to operate in Bosnia
25 implications in other context."
1 Should I continue?
2 MR. GUY-SMITH:
3 Q. [Microphone not activated]
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Microphone, Mr. Guy-Smith.
6 MR. GUY-SMITH:
7 Q. Does that refresh your recollection as with regard to issue of
8 whether or not this signing of the agreement that ultimately became the
9 Dayton Agreement was conditioned by President Chirac on the release of
10 the French pilots?
11 A. Yes. President Chirac, rightly so, was very concerned with the
12 release of his pilots.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I could have a moment.
15 [Defence counsel confer]
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith, sorry.
18 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes.
19 Q. Mr. Bildt, I would like to thank you for your time. I would like
20 to thank you for your candor, and most particularly, I would like to
21 thank you for the efforts that you engaged in during this tumultuous
22 period in the history of the world.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Harmon.
24 Cross-examination by Mr. Harmon:
25 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Bildt.
1 A. Good afternoon.
2 Q. Just a few questions. You were asked on -- a question by Defence
3 counsel, on the 20th of July, 1995, whether you had heard or you were
4 getting information about the massacres. In fact, prior to the 20th of
5 July, as early as the 14th of July, you had received information that the
6 men in Potocari had been separated from the women and children and that
7 the men had disappeared. Isn't that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Okay. And in respect of an answer that you gave to Defence
10 counsel, this is the answer that you gave Defence counsel on page 59,
11 starting at line 14, you were asked a question about foreseeability. And
12 your answer was:
13 "The one who is very worried about what might happen in
14 Srebrenica was the Russian foreign minister," and you named him, I don't
15 have the name recorded, "and the reason for that, I think, was the fact
16 that he had been Russian foreign minister for quite some time, so he --
17 so I -- he been involved Srebrenica since 1993 and was perhaps more aware
18 that many of the emotions and tensions surrounding that particular
20 Can you expand on that, please, that answer?
21 A. Yes, I could. Of course, when I'm saying this, I said the only
22 one who brought it up with me. It doesn't necessarily mean the only one
23 in the international community. But I said, I was dealing primarily with
24 the political aspects but occasionally, of course, people said to me
25 certain things concerning be aware of that and be aware of that,
1 concerning developments on the ground. I remember Lord Owen handing over
2 to him, asking me to keep a particular eye on a particular -- other
3 spots. It wasn't this particular one. The one who really said to me
4 keep an eye on this, on Srebrenica, was the Russian foreign minister.
5 And my sort of theory for that, going back, I mean, this is not
6 something -- I did note it and I took a note of it at the time. And then
7 when I went back, of course, after the massacre and the genocide, of
8 course, then you go back over this issue and said why was it him and no
9 one else? Then it is my explanation to myself that that is the reason
10 why it was him. Because he had been around for a long time and knew the
11 issue quite well.
12 Q. What precisely was he worried about?
13 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
14 MR. HARMON:
15 Q. Mr. Bildt, what precisely was the Russian foreign minister
16 worried about in respect of Srebrenica?
17 A. I can't remember how he phrased it. I went, saw him, this was in
18 the very early stage of my mission when I went around and looked -- I
19 mean, really, I started by seeing sort all of the main actors of the
20 international drama and, of course, Russia
21 those were the key ones and then, of course, the UN, others. So I went
22 down and see him, and I knew him quite well, since previous dealings on
23 other issues. Went down and had dinner with him in Soci, by the
24 Black Sea
25 back over my notes I was struck by this particular fact that he had said
1 something, beware of Srebrenica, and that's roughly what he said. I
2 can't remember more than that. But it was a very emotional and sensitive
3 issue obviously.
4 Q. Was his concern about the enclave itself, was his concern about
5 the people in the enclave? What was the focus, as you recall, what was
6 the focus of his concern that he told you to be aware of?
7 A. If I were to interpret it, but take it as it is, it was that he
8 was aware of this being a very sensitive issue where emotions were
9 running very high. Accordingly, where things could go extremely wrong
10 from his -- from the humanitarian point of view.
11 Q. Okay.
12 A. There had been a lot of evil committed around it. And a lot of
13 feelings of evil around Srebrenica. I wouldn't say this was the only
14 place, needless to say. But he indicated to me at that particular time,
15 and I do not -- and I said, this was something that I found in my own
16 notes when I was writing my books, two years after the event, and it
17 really struck me that he was the only one who pointed at Srebrenica.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Are you able to remember -- are you able to
19 remember the interpretation of this warning by him at the time it was
20 made, that is, before Srebrenica took place?
21 THE WITNESS: Yeah, this was -- yeah. We, of course, in those
22 sorts of discussions you sort of mentioned -- which I had naturally with
23 all of the foreign ministers, where were the sensitive points, where were
24 the difficulties in achieving peace. It was mainly dealing with the
25 political issues, sometimes we mentioned sort of certain areas. Needless
1 to say, the main concern of the international community was on Sarajevo
2 but it was also on the enclaves. I would also say that a lot of concern
3 was on the situation in the west, around the Krajinas; and later, of
4 course, that exploded. Just after the eastern front exploded, which was
5 just after the major fighting around Sarajevo during this rather horrible
6 summer of 1995.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Harmon, you may proceed.
8 MR. HARMON: Could I have an exhibit on the monitor, please. It
9 is P1089.
10 Q. Mr. Bildt, what you're going to be seeing and what I'm going to
11 be directing your attention to is an article, and I'm going to direct
12 your attention specifically to some comments by the UN High Commissioner
13 for Refugees, Sadaka Ogata, and I'd like you to comment on that. You'll
14 see --
15 MR. HARMON: If we could get a little bit larger text.
16 THE WITNESS: Mm-hm. Mm-hm.
17 MR. HARMON: This is not the article.
18 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
19 MR. HARMON: This is not P1089. This is not the document.
20 THE WITNESS: This is an AFB telegram but --
21 MR. HARMON: No, this is not the document I've called up.
22 Perhaps the wrong document has been uploaded into court. But this is ...
23 we can use this document.
24 Q. Can you go down to --
25 MR. GUY-SMITH: Excuse me, Mr. Harmon. I have no difficulty at
1 all with you using the document obviously if it is on the list on one
2 fashion or another, but I'd like to know what document I'm --
3 MR. HARMON: Well, this should be --
4 MR. GUY-SMITH: -- dealing with, that's all.
5 MR. HARMON: Let me just clarify that because it needs to be
7 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you.
8 MR. HARMON: This is P1089. This is the correct document.
9 Q. Mr. Bildt, if we could go down to the fifth paragraph, it starts
10 with the words: "In Geneva
11 Can you read that? It says that in Geneva the UN High
12 Commissioner for Refugees, Sadako Ogata, called the wholesale removal
13 from Srebrenica residents one of the most blatant examples of ethnically
14 motivated forced displacement we have seen yet in the war.
15 And this is dated on the 13th of July, 1995, when she made those
16 remarks. Can you comment on -- first of all, were you aware of the
17 forcible displacement of people from Srebrenica on the 13th of July,
19 A. Oh, yes. And that was -- I should not really comment too much on
20 what the UN did and did not to. But, of course, there was an ethical
21 dilemma involved in it from the UN side, in the sense that part of this
22 was facilitated by the UN and that is why we had talked with
23 President Izetbegovic because if we take the women and the men
24 [indiscernible] what was taken out of Srebrenica courtesy of the UN. The
25 men were then separated -- or some of the men were separated then we have
1 the big column all together, of course. It was a complete cleansing of
2 Srebrenica, yes.
3 Q. Okay. And was the cleansing of Srebrenica foreseeable assuming
4 it was taken over by the Bosnian Serb army?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Okay.
7 A. Yes, I don't think there was any -- any doubt on that, that if an
8 enclave was taken -- I mean, that was unfortunately the pattern of a
9 large part of the Bosnian war. When an army conquered the territory,
10 consequences did happen.
11 Q. Amongst those consequences was murder?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. One of the consequences?
14 A. More or less. In this case --
15 Q. In this case there was an extraordinary --
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. -- murder on a larger scale --
18 A. Oh, yes.
19 Q. -- than what had been seen before. But was murder a foreseeable
20 consequence of the takeover of the Srebrenica enclave? Not on the scale
21 that we're talking about, that we now know historically took place.
22 A. I mean, difficult to say. In retrospect, of course. In
23 retrospect, of course, but murder on this -- because what happened here
24 was -- of course, particularly the fact that people who had been sort
25 of -- the men who had been separated, who had been taken to different
1 sort of encampments in schools and facilities, and you know this
2 extremely well, that they were sort of massacred in large numbers. I
3 mean, thousands after thousands after thousands. That had never happened
4 before during the Bosnian war. Indeed, it is rather unique in post-war
5 European history. It is unique in the post-war European history, to be
7 Q. Putting aside the scale of the murders, in the Bosnian war
8 historically when territory was taken over and ethnically cleansed, in
9 part, part of that ethnic cleansing included the killing of the ethnic
10 group that had been conquered?
11 A. Not necessarily entire ethnic group --
12 Q. Not the entire ethnic group.
13 A. Individuals of the ethnic group, absolutely, if you go through
14 the history of the Bosnian war, yes.
15 Q. So when Srebrenica was taken over by the Bosnian Serb army, was
16 it foreseeable that there would be killings with the conquest of that
18 A. It was foreseeable that there would be a -- connection with
19 fighting or connection with remnants of fighting, or a connection with
20 retribution, or connection with revenge, or connection with something
21 else. Unfortunately, that was the nature of that war. But then, as
22 said, now we're talking about what would unfortunately we call the normal
23 picture of the war, but what subsequently happened in Srebrenica goes
24 well beyond even the rather horrendous normal picture of horrendous war?
25 Q. So your answer to my question was: Yes, it was foreseeable?
1 MR. GUY-SMITH: No, I don't think that was the answer to your
2 question, sir.
3 THE WITNESS: [Overlapping speakers] ... [Microphone not
4 activated] ...
5 MR. GUY-SMITH: [Overlapping speakers] ... if it was an answer
6 that was conditioned upon a series of factors.
7 THE WITNESS: [Overlapping speakers] ... was the genocide
9 MR. HARMON:
10 Q. No, I'm not asking you about the genocide. I'm asking about the
11 killings. Were the killings -- were killings --
12 A. [Overlapping speakers] ...
13 Q. -- foreseeable when the territory was ethnically cleansed.
14 A. Killings, yes. The killings is another question.
15 Q. I understand that, and that's why I put aside the question of the
17 A. Right.
18 Q. Okay. Now, let me discuss my last point, and that is, you
19 discussed at the end of your evidence, you discussed Zepa, and you said
20 there had been agreement with Mr. Milosevic that the -- that he would
21 accept members of the ABiH who'd come over from Zepa.
22 And let me just ask you this question, Mr. Bildt.
23 Notwithstanding that agreement with Mr. Milosevic, to your knowledge,
24 were some of the ABiH soldiers who had made it to Serbian territory, in
25 fact, returned to the Republika Srpska, if you know?
1 A. Don't know. I know there were other killings in connection with
2 Zepa. I mean, notably the commander, of course, in the -- who was -- I
3 think you are aware of this particular incident, when they were in the
4 final stages of the Zepa drama, there was a negotiation or talk
5 between -- I don't know who it was, with the UN commander, and there was
6 Mladic, and there was commander of the HBiH forces in Zepa, and there was
7 the Ukrainian UN people. The Bosnian army commander was then taken away,
8 and I think it had been confirmed that he was killed directly after those
9 negotiations or talks. So, of course, there were also substantial
10 killings in the times of Zepa.
11 Q. Thank you very much, Mr. Bildt. I have no additional questions.
12 Thank you, sir.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
14 It is past time for the break. Do you have any questions for
15 re-examination, Mr. Guy-Smith?
16 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I could have about a minute and a half and I
17 would be able to answer that question. I don't know if the Chamber has
18 any questions. And I am appreciative also of Mr. Bildt's --
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's why I'm asking.
20 MR. GUY-SMITH: Mr. Bildt's schedule. So if I could have but a
21 second. Because if I have a question, I have one question.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Go ahead.
23 [Trial Chamber confers]
24 MR. GUY-SMITH: I have one question.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: One question.
1 Re-examination by Mr. Guy-Smith:
2 Q. My question is this. With regard to the issue of killings being
3 foreseeable, you indicated that it was foreseeable that killings with the
4 conquest of territory could occur for a number of reasons. Those
5 reasons, as I understood your answer, included fighting between the
6 warring factions, the remnants of the warring factions, retribution. And
7 then you mentioned something else?
8 A. I probably did. What? Revenge.
9 Q. Revenge, okay.
10 A. Probably. Yeah.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Was that your question?
12 MR. GUY-SMITH: That was my question.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
14 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you, Judge.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm trying desperately to get you out of this
17 THE WITNESS: I appreciate that, Your Honour.
18 Questioned by the Court:
19 JUDGE PICARD: [Interpretation] I have but two very short
20 questions for you, sir.
21 My first question is the following. When you met
22 President Milosevic in Belgrade
23 according to you, was he aware of the events in Srebrenica?
24 A. Of course he was. I mean, the events of Srebrenica -- well,
25 depends on -- now we have to define --
1 JUDGE PICARD: [Interpretation] No, I'm talking about massacres,
2 in fact.
3 A. That I don't know. That I don't know. But clearly we were -- I
4 mean, the fall of Srebrenica was on the 11th. Srebrenica was headlines
5 all over the world by that particular time. It had fundamentally changed
6 the diplomatic discourse.
7 He was aware of the letter of warning I had sent him. He was
8 aware of the intense diplomatic activity under way. I -- I --
9 immediately when I saw him, I said, Mr. Milosevic, you understand that
10 this has changed everything. You are now in a different situation, and
11 we are in a different situation, and you have to act accordingly. So he
12 was clearly aware of -- I mean, the genocide comes later. Well,
13 awareness of the genocide comes later, to be precise. But the fall of
14 the -- Srebrenica in itself, the fall of an enclave, was such a serious
15 event in itself and the humanitarian issues that we were aware of at the
16 time were such a serious event in themselves that it changed the entire
17 discourse. And that he was aware of. And we made him even more aware of
19 JUDGE PICARD: [Interpretation] Yes. But I was only talking
20 about, in fact, the information that he may have had about massacres that
21 may have taken -- that took in place in the enclave. If you don't know,
22 then I got my answer.
23 Now, my following question is the following. You said that the
24 contact groups were refusing to have contacts with Karadzic and that the
25 only contact, in order to stop the war or to try to negotiate, was -- was
2 So my question is as follows. Was that sufficient for
3 negotiators to convince Milosevic or to pressure Milosevic in order to
4 stop the war in Bosnia
5 A. A very good question. History happens only once. That was the
6 decisions that had been taken by the key capitals. And you can say that
7 in retrospect, yes, the war was been stopped. I think the key question
8 is, really, would it have been possible to close down the war earlier,
9 and that's for the historians to debate. Clearly the summer of 1995 was
10 exceedingly horrible, in terms of both massacre, genocide, ethnic
11 cleansing, different sides. Clearly the worse since it's war in 1992.
12 Would it have been possible for some sort of diplomatic initiative prior
13 to that, I wasn't around the Bosnian scene at that particular time,
14 so ...
15 JUDGE PICARD: [Interpretation] But, in fact, my question was
16 little bit more -- was focussing something else, in fact.
17 During the entire trial, he was saying that Bosnian Serbs would
18 not have been able to survive without the material help from Serbs from
20 of giving the them the material -- material help, would that have stopped
21 the war?
22 A. Well, that is, of course, what we tried to do. There had been
23 the Drina
24 But prior to me entering the scene, Milosevic had agreed to
25 impose a complete embargo on Republika Srpska, and as -- I had a
1 co-responsibility from the ICFY for the ICFY border monitoring mission, I
2 think the name of it was. We had monitors along the Drina to try to see
3 if there were any major supplies coming through. And I spent quite some
4 time, and I had a special American team under me trying to see if there
5 were any signs of major resupply of Bosnian Serb forces from Serbia
6 we were clearly -- and there's no doubt that there was smuggling. But
7 whether there was any major resupply, we did not, with the monitors that
8 we had in place on all of the crossing points and all of the bridges,
9 detect any major smuggling. Could there have been? With helicopters and
10 hidden pipe-lines and the small supplies, I'm quite certain there was.
11 But we spent quite some time trying to find out, for example, how the
12 Bosnian Serbs forces were supplied with fuel, which is an interesting
13 question. But when you went into that interesting question, you also
14 found that there were many dimensions to the war in Bosnia, and there
15 were very many who were prepared to trade in ways that you would not
16 necessarily think of immediately.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Quickly, quickly, are there any questions arising
18 from the questions by the Judge?
19 Mr. Guy-Smith.
20 Further Re-examination by Mr. Guy-Smith:
21 Q. On the very end of your answer, sir, to Judge Picard's question,
22 which is when you went into that interesting question you found that
23 there were many, many --
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Dimensions.
25 MR. GUY-SMITH: Dimensions. Thank you. The language of the
1 question, as it is written here, is a bit funny.
2 Q. Could you expand, please, on what you mean by that: Many, many
4 A. Every war produces, and every sanctions produces black markets.
5 There are always people who are prepared to make money independent of
6 ethnicity and political loyalties in the middle of a war. And in this
7 particular war, there was no difference. So as far as weapons were
8 concerned, there was no need for that, because there was an abundance of
9 weapons in the area that had to do with the fact that, of course, Bosnia
10 was the most heavily militarised part of former Yugoslavia, because that
11 is where the Yugoslav Army had prepared these last bastions in defence
12 against an invasion. So there was both territorial army, and VJ, and
13 arms depots, and arms factories, and enormous amounts of both arms and
14 ammunition in enormous quantities. I mean, military -- western military
15 people who came there subsequently looked at the ammunition dumps were
16 really surprised by the magnitude of how the Yugoslavs had stored
17 ammunition for a prolonged war. That had to do the wartime history of
18 Tito and the partisans.
19 Fuel you could buy on the black markets. Then there was also a
20 lot of smuggling of beer and cigarettes, because it turned out that on
21 Republika Srpska territory there was no brewery. And there was no
22 cigarette factory. The cigarette factory was in Sarajevo, and the
23 breweries were elsewhere. Soldiers want beer and they want cigarettes.
24 So that was also commodities that were very high demand and were smuggled
25 in not in significant quantities across the front lines.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
2 Mr. Harmon.
3 MR. HARMON: I have no questions.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
5 Mr. Bildt, we just made it by the skin of our teeth. Thank you
6 very much for coming to testify, Mr. Bildt, and we know that you are a
7 busy person and that you had to take time off from your very busy
8 schedule, but the Tribunal is grateful to you that you could make the
9 time, and that brings us to the end of your testimony and you are now
10 free to go, and you may stand down.
11 Please travel well back home. I hope you can still make your
12 appointment in Stockholm
13 THE WITNESS: I will. Thanks very much.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: You're welcome.
15 [The witness withdrew]
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Guy-Smith, are we coming back or are we -- is
17 that the end of the day?
18 MR. GUY-SMITH: That's the end of the day, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Until?
20 [Defence counsel confer]
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Until?
22 MR. GUY-SMITH: At present, until the 4th.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Are you able to put us in the picture,
24 Mr. Guy-Smith [Overlapping speakers] ...
25 MR. GUY-SMITH: [Overlapping speakers] ...
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: What is happening [Microphone not activated].
2 MR. GUY-SMITH: I am more than happy to put you in the picture.
4 We are awaiting the attendance of two foreign nationals who have
5 made further requirements upon us before we can have them come to court.
6 It had been our intention to have them testify on the 2nd or 3rd of
7 November, and then to have further testimony on the 4th and 5th of
8 November from one of the experts. That expert is Mr. Djokic.
9 It is anticipated that the other expert to testify in this case
10 will then testify, depending on some other calendaring issues that we
11 have been alerted to, next week, at the conclusion of the next week.
12 That would then leave us --
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated].
14 MR. GUY-SMITH: That's correct.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: 13th. So the whole of the week up until Friday --
16 MR. GUY-SMITH: That is correct.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: -- there will be no witness.
18 MR. GUY-SMITH: Excuse me, hold on. Let me double-check
19 because -- for the moment, I'm not fully cognizant of the calendar.
20 When you rush us, we start speaking Serbian and then I get really
22 11th. A witness, the 4th, the 5th; and then a witness the 11th.
23 Now, what I -- we are going to attempt to get the two foreign
24 nationals here earlier, if we can, and we are very close to the end --
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Earlier than?
1 MR. GUY-SMITH: Hopefully we will get them in next week. We will
2 try. I don't know if we will be able to do it. I just don't know if we
3 will be able to do it.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: I doubt it. Given the filings, I doubt it.
5 MR. GUY-SMITH: We had thought that we were, to be perfectly
6 honest with you, all systems go. I have been pushing, pushing, pushing.
7 I thought we were in fine shape, and then all of a sudden, I hit a --
8 what they call in -- in the Netherlands
9 bump, so now I'm really trying to attend to that really big bump.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Then the Trial Chamber will stand adjourned
11 to the 4th of November.
12 Court adjourned.
13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 3.46 p.m.
14 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 4th day of
15 November, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.