1 Tuesday, 19 September 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: So, Madam Registrar, could you call the case,
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is the case
8 number IT-05-88-T, the Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic et al.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
10 Same advice, if you have problems with translation, let me know.
11 I see no notable absences in the Defence except for Bourgon.
12 Prosecution team it's Ms. Soljan who I don't see this morning.
13 So you were still in possession of the floor, Madam Nikolic and
14 Mr. McCloskey. We hadn't concluded on the issue of proposed Exhibit
15 P2013. I suggest that -- you were in possession of the floor, actually,
16 when I stopped you, saying that it's time to go.
17 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President. Just a couple of
18 clarifications. Along with that exhibit, we have a table of contents
19 that --
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: -- the Defence got which I think it would be a
22 good idea to attach. We also had the index which had the slight
23 description and the match or similarity which I think would be a good
24 index to put in at the end. So if we could put the table of contents in
25 the front and the index in the back, I think it would be -- then we will
1 get hard copies for everyone and CDs for everyone. That would make, I
2 think, a good approach to that exhibit. And that's all I wanted to say
3 about that particular subject. Just a little more housekeeping on other
4 issues, but if --
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Right.
6 Would that allay your concerns, Ms. Nikolic?
7 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. We had a
8 meeeting about his before this session and we agreed that the complete
9 material will be adequately marked and submitted to the Defence at the
10 appropriate time. Thank you.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you for that.
12 Mr. Ostojic.
13 MR. OSTOJIC: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you.
15 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you. Your Honour, with respect to this group
16 of exhibits, I would continue to uphold my objection on the 36 aerial
17 images and do not want those pictures or at least images at least at this
18 time to be admitted into evidence at least engaged on the processes that
19 we have engaged in on those specific aerial images.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't want to argue this matter with you, of
21 course, because we are not here to argue with the parties, but on the
22 other hand, don't you think that admissibility is one thing and final
23 assessment of the probative value of those documents is another, depending
24 on how the issue that we have debated relating to these aerial images will
25 be resolved later on?
1 MR. OSTOJIC: I do agree with Your Honour that it's a two-step
2 process; however, I don't believe they've reached or met their standard
3 for the authenticity of those records and quite candidly we were stopped
4 from probing because of the objection raised by the Prosecutor. And the
5 Court itself I think mentioned that the pictures may be -- or the pictures
6 may be different and we were, in my view, respectfully prohibited from
7 further probing what the differences are and how Mr. Ruez was able in one
8 or more pictures able to remove dates, which makes us suspect that they
9 may not be authentic. I don't know that, but we certainly want to inquire
10 of that issue. I don't believe it's met the first test, but I agree if it
11 had, we would have allowed you to weigh those images.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Ostojic.
13 [Trial Chamber confers]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Any further -- any further remarks on proposed 2013,
15 P2013? And we are going to hand down our decision here and now.
16 The document itself will be admitted or is being admitted as
17 P2013; however, and I won't mention the exact number because I am not in a
18 position to confirm that it is exact, the number of aerial -- US aerial
19 photos, the authenticity of which have been contested will be temporarily
20 marked for identification purposes only. And in due course we will reach
21 a definitive decision on the admission or not. All right.
22 They will form an integral part of 2013 for all intents and
23 purposes, obviously; in other words, they are not -- they are only being
24 singled out for future deliberation by the Trial Chamber. And I -- I also
25 wish to underscore what you said earlier on, Ms. Nikolic, that is once
1 more an indication of the spirit of cooperation that exists between --
2 between the two parties and which it is our sincere hope will continue.
3 It will be in the interest of everyone to go -- to proceed along these
4 lines, I can assure you. In other cases where it went wrong, where the
5 client became contaminated, it was bad for everyone.
6 Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: The videos that I mentioned, the individual
8 numbers for --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
10 MR. McCLOSKEY: I take it those were admitted as well. There was
11 no objection.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
13 Are there any problems in relation to the videos that Mr.
14 McCloskey mentioned yesterday? Do you want me to repeat the numbers? I
15 am -- the 65 ter numbers, I can repeat them. I see no such request. I
16 hear no such request, so they are so admitted. Each one separately.
17 Madam Registrar, and it's your task to give them an exhibit
18 number, which you will then communicate to the parties and to the Trial
20 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, the exhibit number will be exactly
21 the same as the ERN number -- sorry, with the 65 ter number with a P
23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. Thank you.
24 Yes, one moment.
25 [Trial Chamber confers]
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Have you finished, Mr. McCloskey?
2 MR. McCLOSKEY: Just a couple of more housekeeping matters. I
3 have been speaking with Defence counsel about the rule that's in place
4 that each counsel provide the opposing party with the cross-examination
5 materials at the time direct begins. And I think we all agree or at least
6 close to agreeing, counsel may want to discuss this more among themselves,
7 but that it's not necessary as far as we're concerned to provide those
8 materials at the beginning of direct, that we're all satisfied that if
9 those materials are provided at the beginning of cross. And we haven't
10 been getting so many materials at the beginning of direct anyway, but I
11 think it will allow that material to be more limited in the end anyway
12 because they will be more targeted, having been able to think about it
13 after seeing direct some. So I'm not sure we have complete unanimity on
14 that, but I think we are close to it, but of course that's your decision.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]
16 MR. McCLOSKEY: And I would just remind everyone that I have them
17 here that if they have any questions or concerns about the US imagery,
18 that we can get that in writing, that will help get the US going on this
19 issue so we can get that resolved. That -- if there are particular
20 concerns, that may help the issue. So I've said that. I just wanted to
21 make sure everyone was aware of that.
22 And regarding the recent motion about Obrenovic materials, we will
23 be responding to that in the next day or two, but there was an unfortunate
24 miscommunication because I had been communicating with the group about
25 this and we had agreed with some people that we were trying to put this
1 off for logistical, for many reasons, for concerns of one of the Defence
2 counsel. So it's much more looking like either November or probably
3 January or February, and had that been asked that could have been made
4 clear. But we're in a process of speaking to all the various parties
5 involved, but I don't think that's an issue.
6 And on that note, there was a practice that I've seen in other
7 courtrooms that might be a good idea here, where before a party files a
8 motion they are required to go to the opposite party to try to settle it,
9 or at least provide he notice. Because in that case sometimes we can --
10 for example, this one would have -- half the motion would have been
11 settled and that may reduce litigation and it may, I think, increase
12 communication. So I -- that is mentioned in the motion and I have not
13 mentioned it to counsel beforehand. So I just wanted to mention that as
14 something to consider.
15 Also, we have spoken to Defence counsel and for logistical reason
16 it's been better for us to do Mr. Van Duijn before Mr. Franken and so far
17 I don't hear any objections on that and we would be switching the order,
18 if that's all right. And that's it for that housekeeping.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Going through this list were briefly. Last matter
20 you mentioned, I think it's something that you discuss. Similarly,
21 question of disclosure, when the Defence teams are supposed to disclose to
22 you the documents that are -- et cetera. Once you have reached us an
23 agreement, do let us know. We would be prepared to live with what you
24 agree on.
25 Question of US aerial images, I suppose the situation will be much
1 better addressed by everyone once everyone is aware of the exact
2 parameters imposed -- or conditions imposed by the US government.
3 In relation to Obrenovic, we'll await your response.
4 As to your appeal to the Defence teams to adopt different system
5 approaching you beforehand, I don't think we can impose this on the
6 Defence. It's a question which -- which you may talk about amongst
7 yourselves. And if there is an agreement amongst you, of course it will
8 save us and you and everyone else much -- much time. But it's not
9 something that we can impose as on any of the parties.
10 Now, Defence exhibits. Mr. Zivanovic.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honours. I would like to tender
12 into evidence four documents from our provisional 65 ter list. These are
13 the documents: 1D00006, 1D00009, 1D00010, and 1D00012. Thank you.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Any objection?
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: No, Mr. President.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
17 JUDGE KWON: I would like to have it in writing, as was promised,
18 in the future.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: All right.
20 [Trial Chamber confers]
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes, I asked for the -- such submission to be
22 submitted in writing and I remember that I heard some positive answers
23 from the Defence. So I would expect in the future.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Thank you, Judge Kwon.
1 So these four documents are so admitted and marked accordingly.
2 All right.
3 Anyone else from the Defence teams would like to tender? Yes, Mr.
5 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Mr. President. We'd like to tender
6 Exhibit 2D0003. Just so the record's clear because it's our first
7 document, if we have the correct document, if the Court doesn't mind if I
8 just give you the date of the document. It's a two-page documented dated
9 the 19th of July, 1995.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Any objection?
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: No, Mr. President.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: No objections.
13 [Trial Chamber confers]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: So it is so admitted 2D0003.
15 Any further -- Madam Faveau.
16 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] Mr. President, yes, I would like to
17 tender 5D19, 5D20, and 5D27.
18 JUDGE KWON: If you could remind me what is 5D20.
19 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] 5D20 is this document that was
20 transmitted by the Bosnian authorities to Mr. Ruez containing a document
21 in names ending with "CH."
22 JUDGE KWON: Which was used at the last -- thank you.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Particularly, the last page of it.
24 Yes. Any objections?
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: No, Mr. President.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
2 JUDGE KWON: I'm surprised -- no objection in relation to 19?
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 MR. McCLOSKEY: Mr. President, I am of the view of the
5 admissibility and weight rule, and I think you will be able to give that
6 the appropriate weight that it's necessary. I -- these newspaper articles
7 I don't find very enlightening, but I'm not objecting at this point to the
9 [Trial Chamber confers]
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, I thank you, Madam Faveau. These three
11 documents are tendered, being so admitted, marked accordingly. All right.
12 You will know exactly the exhibit number in due course.
13 Mr. Krgovic, I suppose nothing.
14 Mr. Haynes. Do you wish to tender any documents, Mr. Haynes?
15 MR. HAYNES: I didn't use any.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you.
17 All right. Any other preliminaries? Preliminary matters? None?
18 Yeah, Madam Faveau.
19 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] Mr. President, yesterday I raised the
20 issue of DutchBat documents. Yesterday afternoon we received a document
21 from the Prosecutor. I can't say anything as to whether the Prosecutor
22 had the documents or not. We heard a witness last week and yesterday and
23 he said very clearly last week that they had obtained the documents with
24 some difficulty, but they had got it from the Dutch authorities. If the
25 Prosecutor tells me that they don't have the document, I will accept the
1 statement, but I'd like to know exactly whether the Office of the
2 Prosecutor had the document or not or has the document or not. That's the
3 first problem.
4 Second problem, this is already the second witness in a row for
5 whom we don't have all the statements translated in the language of the
6 accused. Last Friday we received two statements from a witness, and only
7 one of them had been translated into Serbo-Croat. The other had not been.
8 Rule 66 is very clear. All prior statements by a witness have to be
9 translated in the language of the accused. I'm confident that the Defence
10 can continue to enable the smooth unfolding of this trial, but rules have
11 to be complied with, including Rule 66 and they have to -- the accused
12 have to have all the statements in the language they understand.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
14 Mr. McCloskey, have you identified already which prior statement
15 has not been translated into B/C/S that -- I'm phrasing the question this
16 way because I don't know if we are talking of a protected witness or not
17 because a witness hasn't been mentioned. So I prefer to phrase it this
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: One second, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, even two.
21 [Prosecution counsel confer]
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Usher, in the meantime I think you can prepare the
23 witness. We've practically finished.
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President, I am aware of -- there was one
25 questionnaire that we became aware of recently and we -- that should be
1 translated soon. There's also a Rule 70 document which the -- under --
2 under an agreement with the Dutch, the Dutch government have allowed the
3 witnesses to either stand on Rule 70 or not. And in this particular case,
4 at this particular time when we saw this witness, he released this
5 internal document, the constrictions of Rule 70. This just happened in
6 his proofing session. So it went out for translation. So that's the
7 explanation for that. And the other one is a questionnaire that went out
8 to everyone -- well, a very long time ago. And somehow that slipped
9 through the cracks of translation.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Otherwise, in relation to the general comment made
11 by Madam Faveau regarding the DutchBat documents as such, would that be
12 covered by what you have already stated or is there anything else you
13 would like to add?
14 [The witness entered court]
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: We -- I'm not sure exactly what she's referring to
16 when she says "the documents" or "those documents." As you know,
17 UNPROFOR, UNMOs, DutchBat, Sector North, I mean there are so many military
18 documents that there have literally been thousands provided to the
19 Defence. We have done a -- a very -- a sustained effort last night for
20 four hours with our best people to broaden that search to the parameters
21 that we got with Ms. Faveau and we were able to with a very general use of
22 the term DutchBat come up with a couple of interesting documents. So at
23 this point I'm fairly confident that we've provided all that we have.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Now, the universe out there outside the Tribunal,
1 there may be more internal documents.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. If there are problems along the way, if
3 you encounter problems along the way, please let us know.
4 MR. McCLOSKEY: If I could have one minute, if we're through, just
5 to change over.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah, yeah, certainly.
7 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I would like to reply
8 to what has just been stated by the Prosecutor, but I'd like to do it in
9 the absence of the witness.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. We can do it later.
11 In the meantime we can start your turn for cross-examination,
12 which is still a long way away in any case.
13 Mr. Boering, good morning to you.
14 THE WITNESS: [Microphone not activated]
15 JUDGE AGIUS: We've kept you waiting for 30 minutes, but you've
16 had an occasion these last five minutes to see for yourself that we were
17 busy engaged with procedural matters that infallibly arise every day,
18 several times a day. I welcome you on behalf of the Tribunal and I thank
19 you for making yourself available to give testimony in this trial.
20 Before you start giving evidence, our rules require that you make
21 a solemn declaration, that in the course of your testimony you will be
22 speaking the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Madam
23 Usher is going to hand to you the text of the solemn declaration. It's an
24 equivalent to an oath in several jurisdictions, and once read out that
25 will be your solemn undertaking with us. Mr. Boering.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I hereby affirm that I will speak
2 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, sir. Please make yourself comfortable.
4 May I ask you what your present rank in the Dutch armed forces is and how
5 you would like the Trial Chamber to address you.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My current rank is colonel within
7 the air force, and I wish to be addressed as Colonel Boering, that covers
8 my rank and my name.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Colonel, and that's how you will be
10 addressed. Very briefly, Mr. Nicholls is going first. He will, I think,
11 spend about two days at least examining you in chief. He will then be
12 followed by the various Defence teams.
13 Now, I've just touched upon something that we have been concerned
14 about. It's in your interest rather than anything that is problematic for
15 us, but we would like you when you have time, the various Defence teams,
16 to sit together again -- the Prosecution has no place in this
17 discussion -- and see whether you want to or wish to retain the current
18 procedure that you have adopted. In other words, that when it's the time
19 for cross-examination, you start the Defence for Popovic first, and then
20 Defence for Beara second, and then Nikolic third, and so on and so forth.
21 Feel free if you wish to change this pattern, either on a
22 permanent -- more or less permanent basis or an a case-by-case basis. To
23 do so, I mean, it may be very cumbersome for Mr. Zivanovic, for example,
24 to go first each time, having to go first each time. Similarly or
25 conversely you may wish to retain the present system. But we enjoy you to
1 have a frank discussion among yourselves and come back to us and tell us
2 what your preference is and we will accommodate you, of course.
3 So, Colonel, Mr. Nicholls is going first.
4 Mr. Nicholls.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honours. Good morning, counsel.
6 Two very small points. As you can see, Colonel Boering is
7 speaking in Dutch, in his first language, so that may take a little more
8 time for translation. Second is, I apologise, our estimate of the timing
9 was off. That is because it did not take into account the videos which I
10 plan to view with Colonel Boering. The last time he testified, those had
11 already been played. I intend to play them with him, so I estimate that I
12 will be about two hours longer than the estimate.
13 WITNESS: PIETER BOERING
14 [Witness answered through interpreter]
15 Examination by Mr. Nicholls:
16 Q. Good morning, Colonel. Your full name is Pieter Boering?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And you're of Dutch nationality?
19 A. [In English] Yeah.
20 Q. You're married with two children?
21 A. [In English] Yeah.
22 Q. And currently, as you stated, you're a colonel in the Dutch army.
23 Could you very briefly describe what your duties are, what type of work
24 you're engaged in now.
25 A. [Interpretation] I work in Munster, that's the NATO headquarters
1 in Germany, and I work there as an adjunct for the operations at this
2 time. For example, we're busy deploying a NATO response force or other
3 deployments such as Afghanistan.
4 Q. Thank you. I want to briefly go through your military career.
5 You joined the Dutch army in 1978. Is that right?
6 A. That's correct.
7 Q. From 1982 to 1989 you served in Germany as an artillery officer?
8 A. Correct.
9 Q. From 1989 to 1993, you had various postings, including here in The
11 A. Yes, I did.
12 Q. From 1993 to 2002 you had other postings including here in the
13 Netherlands, also of course in Srebrenica and later in Kosovo.
14 A. Correct, but from 1993 until 2002 I worked in Germany, especially
15 in Seedorf and from there he was seconded to various other sites.
16 Q. Thank you for correcting me. And you were promoted to colonel in
17 2004. Is that right?
18 A. Yes, that's correct.
19 Q. And I should have asked earlier, you were born on the 6th of May,
20 1959. Is that right?
21 A. Yes, that's correct.
22 Q. Thank you. All right. I want to go now to when you arrived in
23 Srebrenica. Do you remember the date that you arrived in 1995?
24 A. It was 3 January 1995.
25 Q. And was that your first lengthy foreign mission?
1 A. It was my first foreign mission.
2 Q. Was there any kind of introductory meeting with the VRS soon after
3 you arrived?
4 A. Once we had been in the enclave for a week, we met with the
5 leadership of the Drina Corps and other units. They were introduced to
6 us, and they included the corps commander, who was General Zivanovic; and
7 of the different brigades surrounding the enclaves, there were
8 representatives as well.
9 Q. And what was the general purpose of that meeting? What was
11 A. The primary purpose of the meeting was to -- was to introduce
12 especially General Zivanovic and the contacts of the different brigades
13 surrounding the enclaves and -- so that if we wanted to reach those people
14 we could reach them as contacts. For example, the Bratunac Brigade, that
15 would have been Major Nikolic. And in the Skelani Brigade, that was
16 Colonel Vukovic.
17 Q. Thank you. That's -- you've just answered my next question, so
18 that's good. Did General Zivanovic say anything about Srebrenica enclave
19 and what he thought should happen to the enclave?
20 A. During the meeting, he briefly mentioned that he had owned a home
21 in the enclave and that the task of DutchBat was to demilitarise the
22 enclave, and that this in his view was our main task.
23 Q. Now, tell me what the DutchBat mandate was when you were there in
24 1995, briefly, what you recall it was.
25 A. Our mandate was first of all to secure the enclave; second, it was
1 to demilitarise the enclave itself; third, to provide humanitarian
2 assistance, especially within the enclave, but if possible also, for
3 example, in Bratunac.
4 Q. And we'll talk about that mandate a little bit later. Could you
5 tell me about how the DutchBat forces were organised in Srebrenica and how
6 many companies there were, where the headquarters were.
7 A. The headquarters were in Potocari, and the staff and medical care
8 was provided there as well, as well as one company that was guarding the
9 northern section around the enclave. And in Srebrenica there was a bravo
10 company that addressed the securing of the southern enclave.
11 Q. What was the name of the company in Potocari?
12 A. There was a charlie company and a staff company and the
14 MR. NICHOLLS: I'd like to show the witness map 6, please, and
15 that's IC00002.
16 Q. And that should appear on the screen in front of you, Colonel. If
17 it doesn't, we have hard copies. I don't have it yet?
18 JUDGE KWON: In the meantime, Mr. Nicholls, can I know the rank
19 when he arrived in Srebrenica?
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour, sorry.
21 Q. What was your rank in January 1995, when you arrived in
22 Srebrenica, sir?
23 A. I was a major.
24 Q. And again, while we're waiting for the map --
25 MR. NICHOLLS: Well, maybe I should move to a hard copy, Your
1 Honour, and just put it on the ELMO.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: As you wish, if that is faster.
3 Why hasn't it shown up on the -- on e-court?
4 Okay. Let's proceed. Mr. Nicholls.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm not sure, Your Honour. I am told it is in
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah, it is definitely in e-court.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Okay. It's now up on e-court.
9 Q. Sir, if you take a quick look at this map, which I think I showed
10 you when we met last week. Is this map accurate in depicting the enclave
11 and where the UN bases were?
12 A. Yes, that's a clear picture, but I'd like to shift it a bit
13 further to the north because I don't see the bottom of the enclave -- no,
14 no, other direction. That's better.
15 Q. Now, these letters and points surrounding the enclave, N, O, P at
16 the top, D, K, S at the bottom, what do those signify?
17 A. Those were the surveillance posts and they were generally
18 permanently occupied by a bat, eight DutchBat crew members.
19 Q. And are those sometimes referred to as OPs, observation posts?
20 A. Yes, those are the observation posts.
21 Q. Did you ever visit these OPs?
22 A. I visited most of them, yes.
23 Q. Were these observation posts -- we'll talk about this more later,
24 but briefly, were they ever attacked by any armed forces?
25 A. Yes, they were attacked by Serbian troops, especially at the end
1 of our stay in the enclave, so in early July.
2 Q. Did observation post E at the bottom, echo, did that ever move its
4 A. At the end of the enclave in the early July, that post was indeed
5 attacked and we retreated toward the city of Srebrenica itself.
6 Q. Were any new OPs created after observation post echo fell?
7 A. Yes, they were created and in fact you could say that the road you
8 see running from U to Srebrenica, along that road, various positions were
9 taken there, later known as blocking positions, but also served as
10 observations posts.
11 Q. And what were the main functions of these observation posts within
12 the Dutch mandate?
13 A. Primarily to -- primarily reporting. Both people entering the
14 enclave from outside and those leaving from within to outside, whether
15 they were Serbian or Muslims, to secure the border.
16 Q. And in total, how many DutchBat soldiers were there approximately
17 from January to July 1995 serving in the enclave?
18 A. About 400 or 450.
19 Q. Did that number stay the same from January to July or did it go up
20 or down, change at all?
21 A. It decreased considerably, perhaps down to 300 or fewer,
22 especially because more people were able to go on leave or for other
23 reasons and were not allowed to return to the enclave because the Serbians
24 didn't let them back in.
25 Q. Were you able ever to leave the enclave and return during your six
1 months there?
2 A. I went on leave once. I believe that was around the end of
3 February. I had a week of leave.
4 Q. I want to ask you now about your duties with the VRS and with the
5 ABiH. What was your position, your title, as a major in DutchBat in the
7 A. The position I held was on -- was maintaining contact on behalf of
8 the battalion commander, with both the civilian and the military
9 leadership, both within the enclave and with the VRS side. So in that
10 capacity, I was in touch with both the ABiH and the VRS military as well
11 as with the mayor and the civil -- the local authorities. I also had
12 contacts within the enclave with NGO organisations.
13 Q. Okay. Let me break that down a bit. Who were your contacts, your
14 main contacts, with the VRS?
15 A. In the VRS, primarily the Bratunac Brigade, that would have been
16 Major Nikolic. And a bit less frequently, but if problems arose, I'd
17 contact the south, such as OP Echo, that would have been Colonel Vukovic.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Nicholls, just to avoid any possible confusion.
19 I don't have it in my mind, but some might. When he says -- when he
20 refers to Major Nikolic, he is not referring to the Nikolic that stands
21 accused in this case; he is referring to Dragan Nikolic I take it?
22 MR. NICHOLLS: He is referring to Momir Nikolic, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Oh, Momir Nikolic.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: And I've discussed that with counsel. I was going
25 to try to establish that without leading too much. I believe the witness
1 will identify Momir Nikolic later in a video.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: All right, okay.
3 MR. NICHOLLS: To clear it up. But you are absolutely right. We
4 are talking about Momir Nikolic of the Bratunac Brigade.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you.
6 MR. NICHOLLS:
7 Q. That's correct, is it?
8 A. Yes, that's correct, it was Momir Nikolic.
9 Q. Now, where -- I'm sorry. I've -- Colonel Vukovic, who you would
10 meet at the south by -- at the south end of the enclave, which brigade was
11 he attached to, if you remember?
12 A. It was the Skelani Brigade.
13 Q. Thank you. Where -- first of all, how often -- you might have
14 answered this, but how often did you meet with Momir Nikolic in general?
15 A. I would say once every two weeks, and if incidents occurred then
16 we would try to initiate more direct contact and we would do that through
17 a UN interpreter who was at -- stationed in Bratunac.
18 Q. Where -- when you met with Momir Nikolic, where would you meet
19 him, typically?
20 A. Most meetings took place just beyond Observation Post Papa in the
21 direction of Bratunac. There was a VRS observation post there, and
22 sometimes we would continue on towards Bratunac to Hotel Fontana to talk
23 in more detail. But most of the meetings took place right near OP Papa.
24 Q. And was there a bridge there?
25 A. Yes -- well, it's -- it's called "yellow bridge," but you couldn't
1 really call it a bridge. It was just the designation. It was a through
2 road between the observation posts and these Serbian posts.
3 Q. And what types of issues -- not talking about specific incidents,
4 which we'll talk about a little bit later, but what types of issues did
5 you talk about with Momir Nikolic when you met him?
6 A. At DutchBat we had some difficulties with convoys, both ingoing
7 and outgoing. This was reported officially from Zagreb, but at a lower
8 level. We were also told: We want that convoy, can you notify your
9 leadership of that? Sometimes there were some messages from the enclave
10 in the event about arranging meetings, and at a certain point when our
11 supplies deteriorated a bit then the contacts about supplies were through
12 them or an intermediary of them.
13 Q. And we'll talk about that in a bit more detail soon. Did Momir
14 Nikolic ever introduce you to any superior officers?
15 A. Occasionally when I attended a meeting at Fontana or at the
16 observation posts at yellow bridge, it did -- there were some appointments
17 arranged at the instigation of Major Nikolic. And a higher-ranking member
18 of the Serbian armed forces would be present, that's correct. And in
19 those cases, he was the liaison to introduce somebody, and that other
20 person would continue the discussion.
21 Q. Do you remember the names of any of the more-senior officers that
22 Momir Nikolic introduced you to for meetings?
23 A. Well, I remember one name in any case, that was Colonel Beara.
24 That was between March and April, and then again between May and June.
25 Once there was a meeting at yellow bridge and the other time at Hotel
2 Q. Okay. The first meeting, can you briefly describe what occurred
3 at that meeting and where it was, which -- whether that was at the Fontana
4 or at the yellow bridge.
5 A. The first meeting, if I remember correctly, was between late March
6 and early April. I don't remember whether it was at the request of Major
7 Nikolic, but we were heading that way because the situation had become
8 very tense. And then we shifted from our own observation post to the
9 yellow bridge. There was a type of attack or ambush. We were -- there
10 was ambush by the VRS, and ultimately we were taken to the yellow bridge.
11 And there we found Major Nikolic and Colonel Beara, and I was introduced
12 to them. What I remember is that at that point there was tremendous
13 interest in these -- in whether a Muslim leader was in the city and what
14 his position was. Naser Oric -- especially Naser Oric.
15 Q. And who was asking you about Naser Oric?
16 A. Colonel Beara.
17 Q. And can you -- what did Colonel Beara want to know, very briefly,
18 about Naser Oric? What was he -- what was his purpose of meeting with
20 A. Whether he was present, what his role was, and whether he might
21 meet him, whether inside or outside the enclave.
22 Q. Just to be clear, whether Naser Oric would meet Colonel Beara; is
23 that what you're saying?
24 A. Yes, that's correct.
25 Q. And if you could describe the second meeting briefly with Colonel
2 A. The second meeting in Bratunac at Hotel Fontana was -- if I
3 remember correctly -- was at Major Nikolic's request. The meeting lasted
4 at least half an hour, perhaps an hour, and also concerned the stay and
5 information about the leadership of Naser Oric, how it was organised. And
6 once again they were clearly looking for information about how --
7 especially the ABiH was organised in the enclave.
8 Q. And briefly, how did --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, Mr. Nicholls. If you could address the
10 approximate date of this second meeting, please.
11 MR. NICHOLLS:
12 Q. If you could tell us again, Colonel, the date of the second
13 meeting. I think you said earlier between May and June, but if you can
14 tell us when the second meeting was.
15 A. If I remember correctly, it was in late May or early June. Exact
16 date would be somewhere between the end of May and the beginning of June.
17 Q. Thank you. And briefly, how did Momir Nikolic behave when he was
18 in the presence of you and Colonel Beara?
19 MR. MEEK: Mr. President.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: What's the objection, Mr. Meek?
21 MR. MEEK: Well, the objection of a lack of foundation. This
22 witness has not testified as to how Major Nikolic normally acted around
23 other soldiers; and now the Prosecution wants to ask a question which has
24 no foundation.
25 [Trial Chamber confers]
1 MR. NICHOLLS: I can easily lay a foundation --
2 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's hear your response to that.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: I can lay the foundation. I was going to try to
6 bring it up through the witness in reverse, but if Mr. Meek prefers, I can
7 ask some more questions.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
9 [Trial Chamber confers]
10 MR. NICHOLLS: I don't think there's anything wrong with the way I
11 phrased the question, but it's --
12 JUDGE AGIUS: I think it may simplify matters if you do, but on
13 the other hand, if you want to proceed with the same question you put
14 before, you can do so.
15 MR. NICHOLLS:
16 Q. Before you met with Major Nikolic -- with Momir Nikolic and
17 Colonel Beara the first time, how many times had you personally met with
18 Momir Nikolic on other occasions?
19 A. I think I met him about once every two weeks, so we're talking
20 about March -- well, through March. I saw him at least six or seven
21 times, and later in March there was a brief period of tension but we did
22 ordinarily meet about once every two weeks.
23 Q. Okay. And I take it you met with him as well between the first
24 and second meetings when Colonel Beara was present, you met with Momir
1 A. Yes, that's correct.
2 Q. How did Momir Nikolic first of all normally behave, how would you
3 describe his sort of personality or demeanour around you when you met with
5 A. He was terse, business-like, had little time, and was to the
6 point. From the Serbian side, he was in charge of everything at that
8 Q. And was he friendly to you? Was he -- how did he behave to you on
9 a personal level?
10 A. Very business-like. Straightforward. But friendly, no, I didn't
11 notice any friendliness.
12 Q. And were you able to observe Momir Nikolic ever when he was around
13 General Zivanovic, did you meet them together before you met with Momir
14 Nikolic and Colonel Beara?
15 A. Yes, I saw him several times, once with Zivanovic, twice with
16 Colonel Beara, and at the time he was clearly in the background and was
17 the person to establish contacts and was not allowed to intervene in the
18 discussion. He was more there in a secure -- in a security capacity.
19 Q. Okay. And when you say "at that time," which times are you
20 talking about there where Momir Nikolic was in the background?
21 A. Well, for example, the meetings with Zivanovic or the meetings
22 where he was with Colonel Beara.
23 Q. And did you notice - I'll ask it now - any change in the behaviour
24 of Momir Nikolic at the meetings with Colonel Beara?
25 MR. MEEK: Your Honour, I object. That's been asked and answered
1 and it's repetitive.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: You objected when the question was put and he
3 hasn't -- we've gone in a round-about fashion to get there so that there
4 will not be any objection at all. Now that we've come there, you say that
5 he's answered that question. He's never answered that question.
6 Yeah, go ahead, Mr. Nicholls.
7 MR. NICHOLLS:
8 Q. You can answer the question, sir. Did you notice any change in
9 the behaviour of Momir Nikolic with Colonel Beara?
10 A. He was more withdrawn and did not intervene in the conversation
11 and it was clear his role was that of a liaison and not contributing
12 active input at that moment.
13 Q. Now, moving on to your contacts with the Muslim military, the
14 ABiH, who did you meet on that side of the equation?
15 A. Naser Oric, at first the leader of the ABiH; Chief of Staff Ramiz
16 Becirovic; and the third, Ekrem, who was ordinarily responsible for
17 security, but in the absence of the other two, was sometimes in charge as
19 Q. Anybody else that you recall from the ABiH?
20 A. Yes, especially in the western part of the enclave under the
21 aegis of Zulfo and there was a more independent area with its own leader.
22 I met him once.
23 Q. And we'll talk about that as well in a few minutes.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: He hasn't mentioned any time-frame here, which is
25 important I suppose.
1 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm sorry. You're correct, Your Honour.
2 Q. Could you -- you were there from January to early -- to July 12th,
3 1995. Could you describe when you met with these different ABiH leaders,
4 Naser Oric, Ramiz Becirovic, Ekrem, and Zulfo, if you can describe when
5 you met with them during that time period.
6 A. We generally met with the ABiH leaders about once a week. I think
7 it was on Tuesday or Wednesday, I don't remember exactly, but it was a
8 regular day if it was convenient to speak with them. And that was
9 especially in the beginning, I had a few meetings with Naser Oric and
10 Ramiz quickly took over from him in that respect. Zulfo -- it wasn't
11 possible to meet with Zulfo personally. He was more of a loner and
12 avoided dealing with us.
13 I have a question. On my left screen I see a sketch of the
14 enclave and at first I saw a text in English. Perhaps that text in
15 English could be restored.
16 Q. Yes.
17 MR. NICHOLLS: If we can do that.
18 Q. Just approximately, when was it that you stopped meeting with
19 Naser Oric and began to meet more with Ramiz Becirovic, if you remember?
20 A. I think it was in early or mid-February. It was clear that we
21 needed to contact Ramiz and Naser Oric hardly ever showed up at the
22 meetings -- or he showed up once or twice but unexpectedly. Ramiz was
23 more responsible for the interactions.
24 Q. And generally, briefly, what type of issues would be discussed at
25 these meetings with the ABiH?
1 A. The meetings between the military and the ABiH concerned how to
2 act in the event of incidents such as disarmament. If we saw people who
3 were armed, we were expected to intervene. And in the event of smuggling
4 or when people broke out from the enclave, we would indicate: According
5 to our information this happened. Can you confirm this? That was
6 generally focussed on observations and verification. In Srebrenica an
7 arms depot had been taken hold of, and that required maintenance. And the
8 question was: When should the maintenance be performed?
9 Q. I want to ask you a couple of questions now about the VRS and then
10 about the ABiH. Based on your -- since 1978 and you're in the Dutch army
11 and as an artillery officer and your time in the enclave as the liaison
12 officer meeting with Zivanovic, Momir Nikolic, Colonel Vukovic, and
13 others, what's your assessment of the professionalism or organisation on
14 the level of the VRS, as you could see it?
15 A. Within the ABiH? Within the VRS the level of professionalism was
16 clear -- it was clearly a hierarchical structure of a corps commander and
17 various brigades and liaisons. It was very clearly defined, and if you
18 had appointments and arrangements they were generally observed. As for
19 arms as far as I could see, there were tanks, there was artillery, there
20 were enough motorised vehicles. So logistically, there was sufficient
21 military material. That was my impression.
22 Q. All right. Let me ask you the same question now about your
23 assessment of the ABiH armed forces that you observed and came into
24 contact with in the enclave.
25 A. The organisation was primarily in touch with the main leadership.
1 It was divided into specific regions in the enclave, and I wasn't in touch
2 with those people; the company was in charge of that. And if you consider
3 the leadership style that was centrally present from the enclave, the
4 western part was reasonably independent. There was almost no leadership
5 necessary there. If you consider the lighter weapons such as fire-arms
6 and some light mortars and anti-tank armaments, but there were no heavy
7 tanks or sufficient logistical supplies. The only tanks present were at
8 the munitions depot at Srebrenica in the beginning, and they weren't used
9 for exercises or other matters; they were simply in storage.
10 Q. And while we're here, what types of weapons did DutchBat have,
11 your companies?
12 A. We had -- we had certain type of vehicles with anti-tank arms, no
13 heavy tanks or artillery, no heavy mortars, they were caterpillar
14 vehicles, so limited armament and fire-arms. And the idea was that if
15 something serious occurred, we were to report that and request air
16 support, if necessary.
17 Q. And just going back to the ABiH for a second, you talked about the
18 clear hierarchical structure of the corps commander and brigades and
19 liaisons in the VRS. How clear was the hierarchical structure and
20 division in the ABiH, as you could see it?
21 A. I didn't notice any clear role, but the leadership from Naser Oric
22 and Ramiz. But there was a section in the west that -- Zulfo was
23 responsible for that. That was relatively independent, and I don't think
24 that Naser Oric or Ramiz were directing that. I think that nearly a
25 thousand men within the enclave were -- were a group of soldiers who
1 trained and exercised, but the real training and exercise -- I didn't see
2 that. We assumed that nearly a thousand men could indeed act in the -- in
3 such cases.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Nicholls, could he be a little bit more precise
5 about this particular Zulfo. Becirovic, he mentioned him as Ramiz
6 Becirovic. Oric, he said Naser Oric. With Zulfo we've got just Zulfo,
7 and Zulfo, to my knowledge, is quite a common name in the area. If he
8 could be more specific. Probably it's not a problem for him.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: No, Your Honour, that -- we can do that right now.
10 Q. Did you ever meet this person Zulfo, who was, as you say, in
11 charge of this more independent area to the west?
12 A. Well, I didn't exactly speak with him. I did meet him. That was
13 I guess around February when there was a hostage taking near -- I believe
14 it was Charlie Observation Post, it could be Bravo, but I believe it was
15 Charlie and the leadership requested that I go there to try to get the
16 Dutch -- that the DutchBat military who had been taken hostage be
17 released, and I went there and saw Zulfo, but I didn't really speak with
19 Q. So then just to be clear, these were DutchBat personnel who had
20 been taken hostage by troops under Zulfo's command. Is that right?
21 A. That's correct.
22 Q. Do you know Zulfo's last name? Do you remember it if you ever --
23 A. No, I don't remember. We spoke about Zulfo.
24 Q. And what happened when you went there to negotiate the release of
25 these DutchBat soldiers who were being held on the western side of the
2 A. I was taken hostage as well.
3 Q. And how many DutchBat soldiers were hostage at that time,
4 including yourself?
5 A. I don't remember exactly, about ten.
6 Q. How long did this hostage taking last in total? How long were
7 these men held hostage?
8 A. I think it was about three day.
9 Q. And how did that situation end? How were you released?
10 A. There was some discussions, not by me but I believe Colonel
11 Karremans spoke to those in charge; for example, Naser Oric and Ramiz, so
12 that they were ultimately able to mediate.
13 Q. And other than that Zulfo was in charge, so to speak, of this area
14 on the western part of the enclave, do you remember anything else about
15 him as a commander that you could tell the Court?
16 A. Not from direct observation. Only the area for which he was
17 responsible, which was known as the Bandera Triangle, he did not want any
18 involvement by DutchBat patrols. In his opinion -- that was a no-go area
19 as far as we were concerned.
20 Q. And was DutchBat able to control in that no-go area or did
21 DutchBat stay out of that no-go area generally?
22 A. That was one of the reasons why we were taken hostage at the time
23 because we tried to patrol it.
24 Q. Okay. Thank you. I want to go back now talking about the
25 different people and organisations you met with as liaison officer. You
1 said that you met with the civilian authorities and that you met with the
2 mayor of Srebrenica. Did the civilian authorities report to you on the
3 situation for civilians in the enclave?
4 A. We had weekly meetings with the mayor of the enclave. These
5 meetings primarily addressed humanitarian concerns and any issues that he
6 thought were important, he would raise them and discuss them with us. So
7 you -- the humanitarian situation was the primary subject of discussion.
8 Q. We'll talk about that and the situation in the enclave after the
9 break, which will be in a few minutes. Which NGOs or humanitarian
10 organisations did you meet with?
11 A. The delegation of Medecins Sans Frontieres was there, Doctors
12 Without Borders; there was a local staff member of the UNHCR and sometimes
13 a UNHCR convoy entered; there was a local staff member of the Red Cross;
14 and occasionally a small organisation that would enter with messages or a
15 few small projects and then leave again.
16 Q. And did these humanitarian organisations also report to you on the
17 situation in the enclave for the civilian population?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment.
19 Can we go into private session for a while, please?
20 One moment, Colonel, before you answer that question.
21 [Private session]
11 Page 1887 redacted. Private session.
5 [Open session]
6 JUDGE AGIUS: So, all right. I just want to make sure we are in
7 open session and no longer in private session. The public would be
8 pleased to know that the last 30 minutes was break time, during which we
9 were deliberating on some decisions that are in the pipeline.
10 Mr. Nicholls.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. Colonel, I'd like to ask you my last question again and in your
13 answer keep in mind what -- what we talked about just before the break. I
14 don't want you to give the names of people. I don't want you to give
15 specifics. I would just like to know whether in your duties as a liaison
16 officer you learned, received information about the conditions for people
17 in the enclave from the humanitarian organisations you described or that
18 you had contact with. It's pretty much a "yes" or a "no" question.
19 A. The answer is yes.
20 Q. Thank you. Now, as part of your duties you've talked about how
21 you visited all of the observation posts, but how did you travel around
22 the enclave?
23 A. Generally in a Mercedes jeep, and later from mid-May when our fuel
24 started running low I did foot patrols.
25 Q. We'll talk about the situation later. That Mercedes jeep, is that
1 a -- could you describe it. Was that an armoured vehicle or a sort of
2 civilian jeep?
3 A. It's not an armoured vehicle. You could say it's a military jeep,
4 but a civilian model, so to speak.
5 Q. Did DutchBat have APCs at their disposal?
6 A. Yes, we had a few caterpillar vehicles available to us.
7 Q. If necessary, could you patrol in those vehicles?
8 A. Well, our fuel started running low fairly soon, so as far as I
9 remember I never used an APC on my patrols.
10 Q. You described the observation posts, that they were used to secure
11 the boundary of the enclave and that they were manned by, I think you
12 said, eight DutchBat soldiers generally. Can you physically describe for
13 the Trial Chamber an observation post. What physically kind of structure
14 that is and what kind of weapons, if any, are kept in an observation post.
15 A. Well, it's a somewhat elevated post, reinforced by sandbags and
16 wood. The post is constructed with a view toward a good view, and
17 there's -- there's -- it's lit so that you're clearly visible for all
18 parties. And as far as being armed, there is -- there are firearms and
19 perhaps some anti-tank weapons and IPR. There is small arms as well as a
21 Q. And what's an IPR?
22 A. It's an APC.
23 Q. And physically how large is an observation post? You've described
24 how it's elevated and it's lighted so everybody can see it, but how large
25 is a typical observation post?
1 A. Big. Well, six to eight men could live there, sleep, and have a
2 good view, so it's a small residence.
3 Q. And how long would a shift be at an observation post for these six
4 to eight men?
5 A. Generally one week.
6 Q. Can you describe for me, please -- you've described the
7 observation posts and how they were -- the general structure, command
8 structure of the DutchBat at the time. Who was the commander? Who was
9 the deputy commander, and where you fit in in the command structure.
10 A. The battalion commander was Colonel Karremans, deputy was Major
11 Franken, and within the battalion structure of which Karremans was the
12 battalion commander, there were several divisions. And one of the
13 divisions to which I belonged was the liaison division that maintained
14 contact with the aforementioned military and civilian organisations.
15 Q. All right. Now, I've never -- I've never been in military, but
16 would you then report if you had any information to report to Franken and
17 to Karremans or who would you report to?
18 A. Well, we had daily meetings. Perhaps on the weekend we might miss
19 a day. We would have meetings with Colonel Karremans at his office and
20 the division heads would attend, and we would report on what had happened
21 that day. And every week we would meet and plan a bit further into the
22 future. We also issued reports concerning our own field. For example,
23 the civilian situation was something that we reported about to Tuzla,
24 which was a level higher up than us.
25 Q. And just -- just to be clear, who did you -- which command was in
1 Tuzla that was reported to?
2 A. That was the north-east sector. Bosnia was divided into various
3 sectors, and we were part of the sector in Tuzla.
4 Q. Okay. Now I want to ask you some questions about the living
5 conditions, the situation in the enclave for the population. Let's say
6 now from -- break it up a bit, January through April when you arrived.
7 Based on your observations and your contacts, first of all, could you tell
8 me about whether there was enough food for the people in the enclave.
9 A. Food was scarce. It was -- the incoming convoy contents were
10 divided at the warehouse. Everything was in short supply, so a black
11 market emerged where smuggled goods were sold at very high prices.
12 Everything was clearly in short supply.
13 Q. And if you know or if you can give your best estimate, how many
14 people were living in the enclave at this time, the first few months that
15 you were there?
16 A. Perhaps around 30.000.
17 Q. What about water supplies for the population?
18 A. There was a very provisional water system that was often broken
19 and often malfunctioned, not only for the population but also for
20 DutchBat. The water supply was generally bad. Sometimes I saw people
21 standing in long lines at wells trying to pump water, and they would then
22 have to walk a long way to get the water they pumped home again.
23 Q. What about medical care for the population?
24 A. Well, the medical care -- there was a hospital in Srebrenica. We
25 visited it a few times. And there was medical personnel supported by MSF,
1 Medecins Sans Frontieres, and there was a -- there were a few local
2 doctors' stations. And DutchBat also manned or ran some of those medical
3 stations, but medical care was generally limited. Emergencies could not
4 really be treated within the enclave, and there were often convoys of
5 people headed toward Tuzla by bus for additional treatment. There was a
6 hospital with limited medical supplies, but the supply levels were often
7 difficult to maintain. And the medical equipment was another problem.
8 Q. What was the problem with the medical equipment?
9 A. Either it wasn't there or it was broken or it was difficult to
10 repair, so the state of the medical equipment wasn't good. So the support
11 from DutchBat consisted of -- any military personnel that any knowledge
12 about that would try to help get the equipment functional again.
13 Sometimes we assisted with operations or other supplies as requested by
14 the hospital or MSF or local civilians.
15 Q. And just to be clear. You talked about supplies in general, but
16 were there enough supplies of medicines, drugs for the population?
17 A. No. Medical supplies were insufficient to meet the needs of the
19 Q. What about fuel for the population, for the needs of the
20 population? You already talked a little bit about how DutchBat didn't
21 have enough fuel, but for the people who lived there.
22 A. It was available in very limited supply. A few cars were riding
23 around the enclave. Occasionally there were some mechanical chain-saws
24 and there were some batteries, but there was generally no fuel. So the
25 power supply came from generators powered by water, for example.
1 Q. And I was going to ask you about that as well, but what about
2 electrical -- electricity and supplies of that for the population?
3 A. Virtually nonexistent. Small number of people had generators that
4 they used for connections and a bit of light in the hospital to get the
5 equipment going. They used aggregates as generators.
6 Q. Sorry, I don't quite understand that they used aggregates as
8 THE INTERPRETER: They used generators, excuse me.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
10 Q. And finally the sanitation situation for all these people who
11 lived in the enclave, what was that like?
12 A. Well, there were hardly any water-pipes or power, so personal
13 hygiene and waste processing were difficult. Opportunities were limited
14 for that. That was generally bad.
15 Q. You've told us -- started to tell us about how some of these
16 shortages affected DutchBat, but if you could just specifically for you
17 and the other members of the DutchBat battalion, tell me briefly about
18 your supplies of food, water, and the sanitation and conditions for you.
19 A. If you identify the time-frame, for example, from early May, it's
20 fair to say that our fuel supplies and food supplies became very limited.
21 We had to switch to emergency rations, and we also limited our vehicle
22 displacements and tried to do more and more through foot patrols. There
23 were also limited opportunities for purifying water and personal hygiene
24 was also limited.
25 Q. And these shortages and problems that you've described after you
1 arrived in the enclave, how did those -- how was the situation of those
2 problems during May and June and into the first week of July for the
3 population? Did it get any better? Did it get worse?
4 A. It deteriorated considerably.
5 Q. And I want to talk to you now -- you started talking about aid
6 convoys. I want to ask you about those. How often aid convoys were able
7 to come into the enclave in the beginning, and if you can tell us how that
8 progressed during the time you were there, whether these convoys were able
9 to continue bringing relief or not.
10 A. I assume you mean the relief supplies that UNHCR brought in for
11 the population?
12 Q. Yes.
13 A. These convoys with respect to number of vehicles per convoy and
14 total number of convoys decreased considerably, especially obtaining
15 clearance to pass through the Serbian area was a major limiting factor in
16 this respect.
17 Q. Okay. Can you describe how that process was supposed to work, the
18 clearance through the Serbian area, and who on the Serb side was to
19 provide clearance for the convoys to come through?
20 A. As far as UNHCR is concerned, I wasn't personally involved in
21 requesting convoys. But as for DutchBat, that went through Pale and
22 authorisation would be issued as to which convoys and how many vehicles
23 were authorised to travel certain routes, so that was subject to central
24 direction there.
25 Q. You talked about the situation deteriorating considerably towards
1 the end of your time, the last few months that you were in the enclave,
2 and you just talked about the difficulty with assistance to the
3 population. What were the other -- if any, what were the reasons why the
4 situation deteriorated so much for the population towards the end?
5 A. Well, you might also say that over the course of May, June, July
6 the threat increased from the Serbian side to the enclave. There were
7 more shootings. At the end of June, one of those observation posts in the
8 south, the Swedish Shelter Project, where quite a few refugees were
9 residing, that couldn't exist anymore. So that part of the population
10 withdrew toward the city of Srebrenica. So there was an influx of
11 refugees even though the city was already filled with people and refugees.
12 So the situation deteriorated because people became more insecure and drew
13 closer to each other within the city of Srebrenica.
14 Q. You said there were more shootings under the threat increasing on
15 the Serb side in May, June, and July. Can you describe that a little bit.
16 What was the situation of the shootings before May and then after May?
17 Can you describe the shooting and shelling into the enclave.
18 A. Well, I can't speak from May, but as of June and July I can. This
19 varied from our own observations and members of our battalion who had made
20 observations. This meant that from Potocari, our own quarters, we could
21 see houses facing our camp being shelled from Bratunac, where at the time
22 no people were present, that is in the house that they lived in. So in
23 our own observations we could see shelling, shelling of houses. We were
24 also told that this took place further south, but this is something I
25 didn't see myself.
1 Q. The homes that you saw shelled, just to be clear in your answer,
2 were people living in them or were they vacant at the time that you saw
3 them being shelled?
4 A. Normally speaking, would be living there, they could be lived in.
5 For instance, there was laundry drying outside, which is a typical sign of
6 people living there.
7 Q. Who was living there? Who was living in these houses?
8 A. Members of the Muslim population of the enclave.
9 Q. And where did these people go when their homes were shelled?
10 A. They would move in the direction of their own village, Potocari,
11 or towards Srebrenica.
12 Q. Now, you're talking about June. Can you tell me how frequently
13 you personally observed shelling of homes in June?
14 A. In June -- well, maybe two times.
15 Q. And we'll talk more about what you observed in July. How many
16 reports of shelling -- you said you heard about shelling in the south and
17 other areas. How much shelling did you hear about in June?
18 A. I cannot recall, but at least I have heard about this a few times.
19 Q. During -- speaking now of June. Were you aware of any casualties
20 from this shelling?
21 A. Obviously information was provided by the leadership of the local
22 population and from hospitals about casualties. I did not see those
23 casualties myself, so we received reports about people being hurt and
24 people being killed.
25 Q. Now, did this shelling affect your - not you personally
1 necessarily - but DutchBat's ability to patrol the area?
2 A. As to myself, late June -- late May/early June when leaving the
3 compound in Potocari we would face direct fire on vehicles, shooting just
4 in front or behind the vehicle, as a result of which with more frequent
5 occasions we tried to avoid movements, which is why at some point -- I
6 chose at some point to remain for longer periods of time in Srebrenica.
7 Therefore, for me personally, it certainly did have effects on my
8 movements about the enclave.
9 Q. During this shelling directed at your vehicle, how close would
10 these shells be to you as you -- as you travelled down the -- your route?
11 A. 50 metres, approximately, which militarily speaking means pretty
13 Q. You said before when you were talking about the shelling of the
14 town that it came from Bratunac. How could you tell that the shelling was
15 coming from Bratunac?
16 A. From where our camp is, when looking at the terrain one would see
17 some hills outside the enclave. From there, the firing took place, which
18 we could conclude from the sound. Initially I would drive around outside
19 the enclave, so I knew that positions were situated there.
20 Q. Which positions are those? VRS or ABiH positions that are doing
21 the shelling?
22 A. These would be VRS positions.
23 Q. And these shells that were landing near your vehicles you were
24 patrolling with, 50 metres away, was that shelling from VRS or ABiH? Who
25 was sending you that message?
1 A. I assume that this originated from VRS. Initially there has been
2 a report about -- from the UN interpreter Petar in Bratunac who indicated
3 that it was dangerous to regularly come inbound as we were doing with
4 vehicles. So this was a warning to beware.
5 Q. Now, you mentioned this Swedish Shelter Project. Can you tell us
6 what that was and how many people were living there at the time that they
7 had to leave because of shelling.
8 A. I have been at the Swedish Shelter Project two times myself. It
9 was in the southern part of the enclave near Sierra, near the Sierra
10 observation posts which were situated in between. The project had been
11 initiated, funded by the Swedish government. It was a centre with a
12 capacity of 4.000 inhabitants, refugees.
13 Q. And did -- and then all of these people, if I understood you
14 correctly, these 4.000 refugees came into the centre of Srebrenica after
15 the project was shelled. Is that right?
16 A. In any case, they left the projects because they were so insecure.
17 This is why they left. This was because of shellings. I have not
18 observed this myself, but I was informed about this by the local
19 population, that this was the reason why they had left.
20 Q. Now, you've talked about the problems for the population with
21 food, sanitation, medicine, convoys not arriving as they should. When you
22 met with Momir Nikolic, did you raise these issues with him?
23 A. Not only on behalf of the command or with -- we did not only
24 submit demands that Pale but also on the level of battalion, often we
25 underscored the importance of convoys and supplies. We transmitted
1 letters to be transferred to the command of the Drina Corps.
2 Q. And what response did you get?
3 A. The replies obviously were that the letters would be passed on to
4 the higher command, but that we would not receive positive news after
6 Q. Were any of these problems that you raised, addressed and dealt
7 with and made more satisfactory after you made requests to the VRS to get
8 any results at all?
9 A. If you mean aid convoys, not as far as I've been able to observe.
10 But I have had no observation as to the exact dealings of the procedures
11 in Pale.
12 Q. Well, did you talk to Momir Nikolic at all about the shelling near
13 the DutchBat base in Potocari and near your vehicle at all? That's two
14 questions. I'll ask you if you talked about either of those topics with
16 A. Yes, we did discuss these matters. This would happen either
17 directly or indirectly through the interpreter Petar, who was also a
18 liaison that we communicated with over the walkie-talkie.
19 Q. And how did Momir Nikolic respond when you told him about this
20 shelling from the VRS which was coming near the base?
21 A. As far as I can recall, he did not really react to this.
22 Q. You talked earlier about how you went to a meeting -- I believe it
23 was the first meeting you said where you met Colonel Beara with Momir
24 Nikolic and there was an ambush by the VRS. I just want to be clear. Who
25 was ambushed?
1 A. Myself on my way towards the meeting. This men in between the
2 observation post of our own troops and the yellow bridge, in the direction
3 of the yellow bridge.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: And maybe if we could have map 6 up again, please,
5 and we can see where this ambush took place. That's 00002. Still maybe
6 if we can blow it up a bit in the section of Observation Post P. And I'm
7 sorry, I don't remember how he can point -- can't he, to the --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: We can do it. If you want to direct him to
9 Observation Post P, then the idea -- you have that pointer incorporated in
10 the e-court system. And we'll show Observation Post P and then fire the
11 questions that you want to.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: If somebody could just show the colonel where the
13 pointer is and how he can use that.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: I think he can identify the pointer by just looking
15 at -- if he is on e-court mode, he should be able to follow it.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry, Your Honour, I'm still --
17 JUDGE AGIUS: It's okay, Mr. Nicholls. I mean, these are fully
19 MR. NICHOLLS:
20 Q. Now, first if you see --
21 A. [Marks]
22 Q. You've made a little line by Observation Post Papa. Could you
23 make a line across the road from Papa to Bratunac at the approximate
24 location of the yellow bridge. You can't be exact on this map, but just
25 how close the yellow bridge was to Papa.
1 A. [Marks]
2 Q. Okay.
3 MR. NICHOLLS: For the record, the witness has made a line across
4 the road.
5 Q. Approximately where did the ambush take place? You don't need to
6 mark it. If you can just tell us where it was in relation to the yellow
8 A. [Marks]
9 MR. NICHOLLS: And the witness has made a dot in between the --
10 just south of the yellow bridge.
11 Q. Could you describe this ambush. What do you mean by an ambush?
12 What happened?
13 A. It was dark. Normally speaking, the area would be lighted but
14 this light was turned off. And from both sides of the road, all of a
15 sudden some soldiers appeared who, let's say, overtook me and apprehended
16 me, led me away. The road was covered with some land-mines, and they made
17 me step over these land-mines on a piece of wood, and that's what I
18 recall. And after this I was led away.
19 Q. And who else was with you, if anybody, when this happened?
20 A. One colleague was with me. He remained behind and could therefore
21 report this, let me say, hold-up.
22 Q. And just one more question on this. When you say that these
23 soldiers apprehended you, how did they physically apprehend you? How did
24 they stop your vehicle?
25 A. Simply, I was threatened with a gun, a gun was turned at me.
1 Q. Did you report this incident to Momir Nikolic when you saw him
3 A. Yes. You get there and of course you mention what happened to
5 Q. This is at the meeting?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And what was his reaction when you reported this ambush by VRS
9 JUDGE AGIUS: I think before we get to that, he needs to explain
10 how from this ambush he ended up meeting with Momir Nikolic just to say.
11 Because there is a blank there that needs to be filled.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: That he escaped. Did they escort him there? Did
14 Momir Nikolic come for him?
15 MR. NICHOLLS:
16 Q. After you led away and you walked through this area, that had been
17 mined, on the pieces of wood, what happened next? Where were you taken?
18 A. Well, I was then escorted to Colonel Beara and Nikolic who were
19 present there. And at that point it was discussed that the situation with
20 respect to the VRS was extremely intense and they were extremely
21 interested in what was happening in the enclave, especially as far as
22 Naser Oric's stay was concerned.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: He still needs to explain how they escorted him to
24 Momir Nikolic. Did he inform them that he was supposed to meet with Momir
25 Nikolic? Or were they were already -- were -- and they were expecting
1 him -- him and the other person who was with him?
2 MR. NICHOLLS:
3 Q. Can you explain that, Colonel, a little bit more. What did these
4 soldiers do once they had, I think you said, abducted you. Did they
5 immediately take you to the meeting or did you then explain to them who
6 you were and where you were going?
7 A. Of course first you run into a language problem. You can't
8 communicate with the people threatening you. And then without any
9 communication you're threatened and they demand that you come along with
10 them. And it wasn't clear to me where I would be taken at that time.
11 Q. And how did they take you? Did they put you in a vehicle or march
12 you or --
13 A. I was taken away on foot.
14 Q. And where were you taken? Just directly, where were you taken to?
15 A. It was a walk of about 50 or 100 metres in the direction of
16 Bratunac near the yellow bridge and a Serbian post.
17 Q. And what happened there at the yellow bridge?
18 A. Major Nikolic was there with Colonel Beara.
19 Q. Did they have an interpreter with them?
20 A. Yes, an interpreter was present.
21 Q. What did you say to Major Nikolic after you'd been brought there?
22 A. To the best of my recollection, I expressed my indignation and
23 asked what the problem was.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't seem to recall, but was this meeting with
25 Momir Nikolic asked for by your witness? In other words, was it planned
1 already? And if it was planned, did he have any directions as to where it
2 will be held, where he was supposed to go, whether he would need to stop
3 at some particular place? I think we do require this information.
4 MR. NICHOLLS:
5 Q. Could you explain that, Witness, how this meeting came about,
6 whether you were invited to meet with Mr. Nikolic or whether you had
7 communicated that you would like a meeting and were coming. How did the
8 meeting come about and did Momir Nikolic know that you were coming to a
9 meeting with him at that time?
10 A. I don't remember exactly, but I believe since it was already dark
11 at that time that it was an announced contact, whether it was from the
12 DutchBat, through the interpreter to the leadership saying we went to
13 speak to them, or through Nikolic, I don't remember how that worked. But
14 the meeting place was a standard meeting place from OP Papa. Sometimes we
15 drove there in a vehicle so that would be a 200 or 300-metre distance;
16 other times we went there on foot. In this case I simply went there on
17 foot through the no man's land to a well-known site where we often
18 established contact and decided where we would conduct the meeting there
19 or whether transport would be arranged in the direction of Bratunac for
21 Q. And what were you wearing and what was the other person who was
22 with you wearing as they walked to this meeting? Were they -- were you in
23 uniform or can you describe how you were dressed?
24 A. We were wearing our military uniform and had our helmet and a
25 bulletproof vest and a handgun.
1 Q. And just to be clear, is that a blue helmet?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And if I understood your answer earlier, the meeting place you
4 were walking to was a standard place where you would go to meet and you
5 would go there sometimes on foot or sometimes driving, but that is where
6 you would make contact with the VRS. Can I ask you again, do you remember
7 with this meeting whether it was one you planned or just on your way there
8 in order to try and arrange a meeting?
9 A. I'm not entirely certain, but I'm assuming that it was arranged by
10 the VRS, particularly because it was already dark and it's not our choice
11 to proceed through a no man's land in the dark.
12 Q. Now, when you met with Momir Nikolic and Colonel Beara and you
13 explained, as you said, that you weren't happy about this, what was Momir
14 Nikolic's reaction?
15 A. His reaction was limited, basically that this is part of it, and I
16 was put through immediately to the person accompanying him who had some
17 questions from me. That was his main concern. That was clear.
18 Q. Okay. Sorry, what do you mean basically that this was part of it?
19 I'm not clear on what you mean by that, if it was a correct translation.
20 A. Well, it was part of the game. This was part of the enclave and
21 guarding it and the tension between the military forces -- well, that's
22 part of being in the military. Sometimes you're exposed to danger or
24 Q. I want to talk now about a different topic. You talked earlier
25 about the supplies for DutchBat were not getting through, therefore you
1 didn't have enough fuel, not enough food, things like that. What I want
2 to ask you now is: Did either the ABiH or the VRS take, steal, DutchBat
3 equipment or property that you're aware of during the time that you were
4 in the enclave?
5 A. Well, thieves are everywhere, people who steal things from you
6 both within the enclave. Military items would sometimes disappear and
7 that would be the ABiH or another unknown party. Outside the enclave I at
8 some point saw VRS soldiers wearing DutchBat gear, blue berets, T-shirts,
9 and the like when I was en route from Potocari to Bratunac. I probably
10 saw that by coincidence.
11 Q. How often or how many times did you see outside the enclave what
12 you took to be VRS soldiers wearing DutchBat -- parts of DutchBat
14 A. Maybe once or twice.
15 Q. Did you ever report that to Momir Nikolic, that you'd seen VRS
16 soldiers wearing DutchBat property?
17 A. Of course I reported that, and there was no response.
18 Q. What do you mean no response, that he wouldn't say anything or
19 that -- could you describe that just a little bit more.
20 A. Well, you'd indicate that you noticed something and you'd say:
21 Something should happen. Fine. You saw that. I'm not going to do
22 anything about it. I'll see what happens. My feeling was that nothing
23 would be done about it.
24 Q. And just to finish off this line, was anything --
25 JUDGE KWON: Can I ask the Colonel whether he thinks that those
1 might have been -- must have been stolen. Do you mean it?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, it was -- somebody absconded
3 with it, stole it. Somehow somebody must have got ahold of it.
4 MR. NICHOLLS:
5 Q. And just to be clear, besides berets, what else, if anything, of
6 DutchBat equipment did you see with VRS soldiers?
7 A. Later on in July I saw some APCs that had probably been
8 appropriated when the observation posts were taken. And I saw Serbian
9 soldiers were already in there. That was near Bratunac.
10 Q. We'll talk about that a little bit later as well, as we get to
11 that period.
12 I want to talk to you now about some of the efforts DutchBat made
13 in its mandate, as you've defined it for us. I'll start first asking you
14 about demilitarisation of the enclave. First of all, you described at the
15 beginning of your testimony how General Zivanovic at this introductory
16 meeting said that the most important thing was that the enclave be
17 demilitarised. Did he say anything else about the enclave, what would
18 happen if it wasn't demilitarised?
19 A. As far as I remember, he mentioned that if this didn't happen it
20 would have no more right to exist.
21 Q. What -- do you remember what he said, what words he used?
22 A. No, I don't remember.
23 Q. Did you remember that at the time you gave a statement to the ICTY
24 in 1998 when you were asked about this meeting?
25 A. I can't remember at this time. That was a while ago, but I did
1 make a statement to the ICTY in 1998.
2 Q. Do you remember talking about this first meeting with Zivanovic in
3 that statement?
4 A. I remember that he had formerly lived in the enclave and believed
5 that it should be disarmed and that he wanted to return to the enclave.
6 Q. Would it help you remember to look at this statement that you made
7 way back in 1998, much closer to the events?
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Go ahead, if you think it is necessary to refresh
9 the witness's memory. Go ahead, Mr. Nicholls.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: That's what I'm trying to do without anybody
11 jumping up.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: You made me jump up.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Okay. Sorry, Your Honour.
14 Q. If I can read to you, this is on page 3, for my friends, of his
15 1998 ICTY statement. ERN number 00583505.
16 "General Zivanovic delivered a long speech during the reception,
17 explaining that he had a house inside the enclave and that he would like
18 to return there. He also said that the enclave had to be demilitarised by
19 DutchBat, otherwise it would be razed to the ground."
20 Now, does that help you to remember what he said at the meeting?
21 A. Yes. I endorse this. It was indeed said that way, but it's
22 difficult to remember it exactly.
23 Q. I understand, and this statement was made quite some time ago. I
24 don't expect you to remember everything perfectly; I don't think anybody
25 else does.
1 Now, then, talking about the efforts to demilitarise the ABiH in
2 the enclave, in your view, was DutchBat able to accomplish this task?
3 A. With the number of soldiers we had in the enclave, that was
4 difficult to do. The right to conduct house searches based on suspicions,
5 that was a fairly complicated procedure if I remember correctly. It was
6 rather that if you encountered people while you're on patrol and those
7 people were armed, then the idea was to confiscate the weapons of those
8 people, but a focussed approach including house searches, that wasn't
9 something that was happening at the time.
10 Q. When these arms -- you started talking before about an arms depot.
11 When DutchBat patrols did see persons with arms inside the enclave, where
12 would they -- and they were able to confiscate the weapons, where would
13 they be taken and stored?
14 A. They would ultimately end up in the Srebrenica weapon collection
16 Q. Where was that collection point?
17 A. That was on or very close to the Bravo Company base in Srebrenica,
18 so that was within the area guarded by the Bravo Company. So to gain
19 access you had to have permission from DutchBat to get in there.
20 Q. And say by the time the enclave fell, 11 July, how many -- how
21 many weapons were being held in the arms depot and what types of weapons
22 were held there?
23 A. There was some containers with fire-arms and some small arms and
24 some larger anti-tank weapons and perhaps some rather obsolete tanks. I'm
25 not sure whether they could really be deployed, and some munitions, of
2 Q. Just one follow-up, fire-arms, small arms, if you can be a little
3 more specific what types of weapons you're referring to, if you can be.
4 A. Machine-guns, rifles, handguns. They were often relatively
5 outdated. Not ordinarily state-of-the-art military equipment.
6 Q. During the time you were in the enclave, you already said that it
7 wasn't possible for DutchBat to completely demilitarise the enclave. Are
8 you aware of whether the ABiH was able to smuggle weapons into the enclave
9 while DutchBat was there?
10 A. Smuggling was clearly going on, otherwise the black market would
11 not have existed in the enclave, and that weapons were being smuggled in
12 as well seems obvious to me.
13 Q. You talked earlier about the place you were held hostage on the
14 western side, the Bandera Triangle as a no-go zone. It probably goes
15 without saying, but I take it that you weren't able to demilitarise this
17 A. My answer is yes. If it's virtually impossible to get in
18 somewhere, then you can't do your job properly there either.
19 Q. And was the ABiH able to have any helicopter flights into and out
20 of the enclave while you were there?
21 A. Yes. That happened on occasion and occasionally there were
22 helicopter crashes where some people were killed.
23 Q. Was DutchBat able to control these helicopter flights by the ABiH?
24 In other words, authorise or prevent them?
25 A. The idea was for this not to happen and for us to stop that, to
1 prevent this from happening. And we tried to do that.
2 Q. And just as you're aware, how many times did you learn that a
3 helicopter had flown in or out, an ABiH helicopter?
4 A. About five times. Often you -- you would learn about it through
5 rumours among the civilian population.
6 Q. And if you know, typically are these flights during the day-time
7 or night-time?
8 A. Of course they were at night.
9 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Nicholls, as for weapons smuggled in, can I hear
10 from where were those smuggled.
11 MR. NICHOLLS:
12 Q. Yeah, Colonel, you've talked about how there was smuggling going
13 on. There was no question about that. There was a black market. You
14 thought weapons would have been smuggled in as well. Do you have any
15 information of where those weapons were smuggled in from, where they came
17 A. I don't have any data on that.
18 Q. Talking a little bit now about the mandate to secure the enclave,
19 you talked earlier about the observation posts, some of them being taken
20 over by VRS troops. What I want to ask you know is if you know whether or
21 not ABiH forces within the enclave were able to mount attacks outside the
22 enclave during the time you were there?
23 A. That did happen, and we heard about that from Momir Nikolic; he
24 would urgently request us to do something about that.
25 Q. Were you able to prevent such raids, we'll call them?
1 A. We tried to stop it whenever we could, but it's fair to say that
2 they were quite adept at circumventing the observation posts.
3 Q. "They" meaning the ABiH?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And you've also talked earlier and we'll talk a bit more about it
6 soon whether there was shelling from the VRS into the enclave, shooting
7 into the enclave from the VRS. Unfortunately, DutchBat was not able to
8 stop that either. Is that right?
9 A. We didn't have the opportunity and lacked authorisation to patrol
10 outside the enclave. So we had no knowledge of what the VRS did outside
11 the enclave and certainly were not in a position to influence what they
13 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Reading through the transcript here,
14 one would get the impression -- one would understand that the information
15 about these attacks by ABiH forces outside the enclave but from inside,
16 knowledge of this he obtained from Momir Nikolic. Did he or DutchBat or
17 UNPROFOR, whatever, also have intelligence confirmation of that,
18 independently of the reports or complaints of Momir Nikolic? Could they
19 confirm them independently, in other words?
20 MR. NICHOLLS:
21 Q. Could you answer the question from the Bench, Colonel. Based on
22 your work in the enclave, your patrols, your intelligence, your contacts
23 with the ABiH and other parties there, were you able to confirm the
24 complaints from Momir Nikolic that these attacks had taken place?
25 A. I don't remember that, whether that was possible. Of course we
1 would have liked confirmation in a different manner.
2 Q. Did you -- did DutchBat - not you personally - but did DutchBat
3 make efforts to investigate these raids and what was taking place?
4 A. Well, you're getting into an area where I was not involved, but I
5 assume that the battalion commands asked the same question to Tuzla and
6 Zagreb and requested additional information asking: Can you tell us
8 Q. But --
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honours, I'm going to move in --
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: We're a little bit earlier, but I'm going to move
12 into a new chapter.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: No, you know how this Chamber operates. Whenever
14 it's more convenient to you, we'll have the break.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: At this.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: And the same applies to you, Colonel. If at any
17 time during your testimony you require a short or long break, please do
18 let us know straight away and we will accommodate you immediately.
19 [Trial Chamber confers]
20 JUDGE AGIUS: 25 minutes' break.
21 --- Recess taken at 12.23 p.m.
22 --- On resuming at 12.55 p.m.
23 [The witness stands down]
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, we've been informed that Madam Faveau and Mr.
25 Ostojic would like to address the Trial Chamber not in the presence of the
2 Mr. Ostojic, you go first.
3 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours. Forgive me
4 for raising this issue somewhat untimely. When we asked about the
5 exhibits I failed to mention the one-page document that Mr. Ruez on the
6 15th of September actually drew with a red pen a route, and if you
7 remember it was from the group of 272 exhibits, the first page, so it
8 would be page 1. And Mr. Ruez wrote a route where the military column
9 went and I think indicated two areas at least where they were battles or
10 ambushes and I failed to introduce that as an exhibit and I did mention it
11 to my learned colleague, so he is aware of it as well. Forgive me for
12 wasting your time on this issue now.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think there is a problem on your side, Mr.
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: No, Mr. President.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: So it is so exhibited and it will be given a 2D
17 exhibit thank you. Thank you.
18 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Faveau.
20 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] [No interpretation]
21 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Okay, because -- can you --
22 THE INTERPRETER: One moment, please.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: You have to start again, unfortunately.
24 Okay, I think we are fine now. Could I kindly ask you to start
25 all over again, Madam Faveau, please.
1 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] Certainly, Your Honour. I would like
2 to respond to the Prosecutor regarding a document that according to us
3 must be somewhere in the Prosecutor's office. We are asking to get a
4 daily report from DutchBat that were going to Srebrenica to the seat
5 north-east which was in Tuzla, to the seat north-east of UNPROFOR, as well
6 as the reports that were going from DutchBat to the to Srebrenica to the
7 Defense Ministry of the Netherlands.
8 Since the witness we had here the last few days was the chief
9 investigator of the Prosecutor's office said -- and he said this yesterday
10 on page 63, line 9. He said that the Prosecutor's office received all the
11 reports of Dutch soldiers. We are not talking about witness statements;
12 we are talking about daily reports that must exist somewhere because
13 DutchBat is a military unit and as such they were sending daily reports to
14 their superiors. We deem that these documents are absolutely of paramount
15 importance for our case and that this case cannot be elucidated without
16 these documents.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam Faveau.
18 Mr. McCloskey.
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: What exactly Mr. Ruez meant is -- he knows that
20 there's thousands of Dutch -- Dutch reports, UNMO reports, various reports
21 related to this incident. He's familiar with the to and froing of trying
22 to get documents from all these governments. But this asking for
23 documents that must be in our possession doesn't -- doesn't help us and
24 it's -- as you know, many times because there's so much stuff, we -- we're
25 not exactly sure what's in our possession at times and I acknowledge that.
1 However, we have done searches over several years under the names of all
2 these various people, Franken and Van Duijn and the various witnesses.
3 And we have recently done a very broad search regarding DutchBat itself
4 and we came up with some 2.000 documents last night and we looked through
5 those. It's my best opinion now that internal DutchBat reports we do not
6 have. Now, of course there's going to be internal -- some internal
7 DutchBat reports that are -- that are different from some of the UNPROFOR
8 and other reports that we've seen. That -- if they exist, that has been
9 known for years by any Defence and we had a request to assist them with
10 the Dutch government. We could have got that. We still can, but as far as
11 I know this material is not in-house and it's probably considered Rule 70
12 by the Dutch. Much of the material that we received was received under
13 Rule 70 and we've been able to clear some of it.
14 We're ready to assist the Defence if they can give us any more
15 clear idea of what they're looking for, but I think I know what they're
16 looking for and we don't have it. And if they want to get into the
17 internal documents, let's get a request in, but this is the Nth hour, this
18 is something that they could not have been years ago, years ago literally.
19 And there are so many reports related to DutchBat, they were debriefed so
20 many times and they testified so many times, the amount of information
21 about what they've said about this is voluminous. Could it be helpful to
22 have their internal reports? Yes. If this group of Defence attorneys
23 wants that, we'll assist them in doing that and there should be enough
24 time to do that and we will of course make an effort to bring people back
25 if something comes up that's important.
1 But right now my best view on having some very good people,
2 including Ms. Faveau, who is very good at searching EDS, none of us have
3 been able to find this material, aside from a few documents that we were
4 able to find. And we have gone, as she knows, to Geneva, in the long ago
5 past, and found some information. But it's an issue that we can help and
6 we'll do our best to get stuff. But as far as I know from our best people
7 looking, these things are not in our possession right now, and I don't --
8 the difficulty of getting materials, internal materials from governments,
9 you know, is something I don't want to get into. I think we can probably
10 get at this stuff if every -- if we do a concerted effort, we'll do an RFA
11 and we can get at it, but it's a bit late in the day.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Faveau.
13 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I am not asking to
14 obtain the internal documents of the DutchBat, its internal documents of
15 the Dutch authorities and government of Holland and documents that are
16 within the Ministry of Defence, but there is a second batch of documents
17 and those are documents that the DutchBat was to send to the north-eastern
18 sector of Tuzla. These are the UNPROFOR documents, United Nations
20 Yesterday Mr. Ruez was very clear since I have asked him two very
21 distinct questions regarding these documents belonging to the UNPROFOR.
22 Mr. Ruez said that, yes, quite possibly or quite probably the Prosecutor's
23 office has those documents and I think that Mr. Ruze is the person in --
24 who can definitely tell us if these documents are in the possession of the
25 Prosecutor's office. However, I have no proof, I have no reason to doubt
1 Mr. McCloskey's word, but in that case I think that the Defence can try,
2 that is certain, but it would be much more efficient if the Prosecutor's
3 office asked the Dutch government or the United Nations to obtain these
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Let me consult with my colleagues before telling you
6 or giving you a direction.
7 [Trial Chamber confers]
8 JUDGE AGIUS: So the position that we take is one which I am sure
9 you would be anticipating, namely at -- as the situation is, we have to
10 accept your word, Mr. McCloskey. We also understand that you're still not
11 exactly fully happy with this situation. If you continue this discussion
12 amongst yourselves and the Prosecution, upon your request, seeks or asks
13 for further documentation from the Dutch government, of course we can look
14 into that at a later stage when it happens. But we do understand the
15 position of both of you, and it is also obvious that the Prosecution has
16 taken very seriously the point raised by you yesterday and they have done
17 a thorough search.
18 Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President, I think it's a fair request.
20 We'll work to get the wording of an RFA and get the Dutch on it as soon as
21 we can. It's -- and we'll continue looking in that little pile of
22 material that you know is over my shoulder and if we come up with anything
23 we'll of course let them know immediately.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: But again I -- I regret we haven't -- I don't have
1 my hands on this stuff, but if any -- these kinds of requests, the sooner
2 we get them the better they are. But we'll get on it right now and get
3 what there is.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay, that's perfect. Thank you so much.
5 Let's re-admit the witness, please.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honours, as I recall the procedure, I would
7 now like to save this image and give it a number.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: But he will initial it first.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, correct, we're coming to that exactly because
11 it's still on the screen and I don't quite know whether we have finished
12 with it or not.
13 [The witness entered court]
14 WITNESS: PIETER BOERING [Resumed]
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 Examination by Mr. Nicholls: [Continued]
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, go ahead, Mr. Nicholls.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honours.
19 Q. Colonel, the image that should still be on the screen in front of
20 you, we're going to save that and I'd like, if I could, for you just to
21 put your initials in, say, the top left-hand corner. You can do it with
22 that stylus.
23 A. [Marks]
24 Q. Even better. Thank you.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: So you're tendering that map, I take it?
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, and I suppose they all get tendered at the
2 end, but if it gets a number now.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: It can get a temporary -- the number that will be
4 assigned to it later on, at least temporarily for the purpose of the
5 continuation of the cross-examination -- examination-in-chief and the
7 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
8 THE REGISTRAR: It will be temporarily IC7.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Mr. Ostojic has pointed out to me that it should be
10 dated, but I think it gets a date stamp automatically when this is saved
11 or when this was created? I thought it got a date and time?
12 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, it does.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Okay.
14 Q. Thank you, Colonel. I'm now going to ask you to tell us about the
15 events that led up to the fall of Srebrenica and the week preceding the
16 11th of July, 1995. I'd like you as much as you can in your own words to
17 describe what happened, what you observed, during this time. So let me
18 begin around the 6th of July, where were you staying, at Bravo or at
19 Charlie and what did you see happen that day? Let's start with the 6th.
20 A. Around 6 July I was still staying in Potocari. In fact, as far as
21 I can remember, some observation posts had already been taken by the
22 Serbians. The personnel from two observation posts had already been taken
23 prisoner at the Swedish Shelter Project in the south of the enclave which
24 was virtually deserted. On or around that date, a grenade badly hit our
25 camp at Potocari, which was analysed by the EOD crew. Overall, things
1 were very tense in the enclave. The city was fairly packed with refugees.
2 The EOD is the Explosives Clearance Service. And riding from one site to
3 another became more dangerous, so around 6 or 8 July I imagine that I
4 stayed in Srebrenica.
5 Q. Thank you. Let me ask you a couple of questions. If you
6 remember, when did the observation post first start to fall or be taken by
7 the VRS?
8 A. I believe that would have been at the end of June or early July.
9 I don't exactly remember the date. I assume it was in early July.
10 Q. If you remember, roughly, can you tell me the order in which the
11 OPs fell.
12 A. Well, it was especially in the south. I expect that it was Echo
13 and then Sierra a bit further to the north, but I don't have the map in
14 front of me depicting the different observation posts --
15 MR. NICHOLLS: [Previous translation continues] ... and bring it
16 out a bit. It doesn't need to be the one that he marked, although it can
17 be if you can zoom out.
18 Q. Can you see that all right? It's -- that's better. Thank you.
19 Maybe a little bit -- bring it up a little bit. Thank you.
20 A. That's fine. I expect that was Fox-trot, Echo, and the rest of
21 the sequence hasn't stayed in my memory.
22 Q. And just to be very clear, Fox-trot is the base marked F, Echo is
23 the base marked E on the map?
24 A. That's correct.
25 Q. And you talked about the -- it says in the transcript "grenade"
1 that hit the camp in Potocari. Can you describe what kind of explosive
2 device that was. Is it a grenade that's thrown by a soldier, a shell, a
3 mortar? Just tell me if that's correct what we have here or if it was
4 something else?
5 A. I assume that it was a grenade from a piece of artillery or a
6 larger mortar, based on the report of the -- of the hit as drafted by the
7 EOD. Because there were quite a few projectiles flying back and forth
8 around the compound. So I assume that it was artillery or a heavy mortar.
9 Q. Describe a bit more what you mean by "quite a few projectiles
10 flying back and forth around the compound." What kind of projectiles?
11 Where are they coming from?
12 A. Quite a few projectiles, it's -- you -- I heard shots being fired
13 from Bratunac, from the east, and then you could hear a projectile
14 whistling across the compound. And then you would hear the impact and how
15 many there were, a few, around that date.
16 Q. And how close were these impacts to the compound?
17 A. I remember one was a few hundred metres away, and it's no longer
18 clear in my mind where the others hit.
19 Q. All right. How did this shelling affect DutchBat's ability to go
20 out and patrol and see what was going on outside?
21 A. That seriously limited what we could do. Generally, a bunker
22 alarm would ring and the only patrols were those that were absolutely
23 necessary. It became very limited.
24 Q. Did you become aware of other places being shelled within the
25 enclave? Other objects?
1 A. Yes, at any rate from the report of a patrol and somebody told me
2 personally that he had seen in the south of the enclave that villages were
3 being -- were under fire and that the population was being driven into
4 Srebrenica -- the city of Srebrenica itself. That was in late June or
5 early July.
6 Q. Were these Muslim or Serb villages being shelled?
7 A. They were Muslim villages in the enclave itself.
8 Q. And then moving on, we've been talking about the 6th to the 8th.
9 You described events on the 9th and into the 10th. What happened, what
10 you experienced?
11 A. Well, at that point the city of Srebrenica became more and more
12 crowded with refugees. The local population was very tense, and the
13 military leaders of the enclave, that is, the Muslims, had a meeting
14 around that time to plan how they would take it from there. And we met
15 with them briefly. Colonel Karremans and I participated. Generally the
16 situation was very tense and we lacked prospects.
17 Q. Was -- what was discussed at the meeting as terms of options how
18 to deal with the VRS advance?
19 A. We discussed how we might possibly put up a combined defence. It
20 was a difficult discussion as to who would do what and whether it could be
21 coordinated. And the second subject was the air support from -- that
22 would be provided by the UN.
23 Q. And before we get to that let me ask you a question I should have
24 asked you a couple of moments ago. When these observation posts fell and
25 were captured, were any DutchBat soldiers captured by the VRS?
1 A. Yes, they were taken prisoner. At one point the DutchBats that
2 had been taken prisoner contacted us by radio and told us where they were.
3 So we were in very limited contacts with the DutchBat people who had been
4 taken prisoner. I remember that.
5 Q. How many, approximately, DutchBat soldiers were taken prisoner?
6 A. About 10 or 15. I don't remember the exact figure.
7 Q. Where were they being held? You said they told you where they
8 were being held.
9 A. Well, while we were in radio contact, I didn't know where they
10 were being held, but later on when they were being held in Bratunac I saw
11 that it was in Hotel Fontana.
12 Q. And we'll get to that part as well. Did you -- do you remember a
13 Dutch soldier named Rensen?
14 A. Yes, of course I remember him. Unfortunately, he was killed there
15 by a hand-grenade that was most probably thrown by a Muslim fighter, and
16 according to the Muslim leaders that fighter was not in his right mind and
17 the Muslim leaders apologised afterwards.
18 Q. And was that killing by the Muslim of Private Rensen discussed at
19 this same meeting you referred to a few moments ago where you met with the
20 ABiH authorities?
21 A. Yes, that did come up in the discussion, but I believe that
22 happened somewhat earlier at a different meeting. With Ekrem or Pejzovic
23 [as interpreted] or Ramiz, I believe, we discussed it perhaps one or two
24 days earlier.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Can the Colonel indicate to us the approximate
1 time-frame when Officer Rensen was killed, please?
2 MR. NICHOLLS:
3 Q. Yes, we're discussing this period. But as precisely as possible,
4 do you remember the date when Private Rensen was killed by that
6 A. Well, I don't know the exact date, but I assume it was in -- at
7 the end of June or the beginning of July, probably the beginning of July
8 but I can't say that with certainty.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Can I have one moment, Your Honour?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Perhaps if you could ask him whether at the time any
11 of the observation posts had already fallen or not that would help him
12 remember better.
13 MR. NICHOLLS:
14 Q. Yes, you've His Honour's suggestion. Do you remember when this
15 death was in relation to the fall of the OPs?
16 A. Well, we had lost Echo by then in any case. So the Muslim
17 population was already tense at that, that the DutchBat was retreating a
18 bit. That -- I can place that in context.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: If I may perhaps refresh his recollection from his
20 first ICTY statement. He discusses this incident.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, go ahead, Mr. Nicholls.
22 MR. NICHOLLS:
23 Q. This is from the first statement, 28 September 1995, on page 4 of
24 the English, 00443270 is the ERN number. I'll read what you said in your
25 statement, Colonel, and see if that helps you remember a little bit.
1 The paragraph above starts: "One night on or about 8 July I heard
2 heavy shelling ..." And you discuss the shelling and some other points.
3 And the next paragraph you begin: "Private Rensen was killed around this
4 time by a fragment of a hand-grenade that pierced his neck."
5 Do you think that's accurate?
6 A. Yes, that's exactly as I remember it.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Faveau.
8 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] Mr. President, this is a very
9 classical example of leading questions.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: That's why I asked permission to read to him the
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, we gave him --
13 MR. NICHOLLS: I mean, I think the objection could have been
14 before I started.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
16 MR. NICHOLLS:
17 Q. Now, back to the meeting you went to with Karremans and the ABiH
18 leaders. Can you tell us if air strikes or air supports were discussed
19 and what conversations surrounded that issue.
20 A. My conversation was with both the military leaders of the enclave,
21 such as Ramiz, the mayor was also present, and the conversation was
22 conducted by Colonel Karremans himself. And it was stated with some
23 degree of certainty that air support was provided the next day. The
24 support was provided to the population and the leaders; I remember that.
25 Q. Were there any conditions that had to be fulfilled before air
1 support would be called in, anything in particular would have to happen?
2 A. Yes, what was known as the smoking gun principle. It certainly
3 emerged during the days that preceded, they wanted -- the UN demanded
4 evidence of attack. So we needed evidence.
5 Q. And what happened as evidence provided?
6 A. I think it was before the meeting with the leaders, perhaps the
7 day before. I had a question earlier than that with Ramiz and I informed
8 him of the need of a smoking gun. And -- well, let's say that they tried
9 to comply with that. The Muslim military men said: This is what's wrong,
10 and then a limited patrol advanced to see what was wrong. But when
11 exactly did that happen, I assume it was before the meeting, one or two
12 days before that meeting happened.
13 Q. And if you know, where did that patrol go and what happened to
14 that Muslim patrol?
15 A. A patrol left Srebrenica toward the Swedish Shelter Project in the
16 south, and they came under fire. I didn't see that myself, but there was
17 a report. Some people were injured and perhaps killed among the Muslims.
18 And they subsequently returned and -- well, let's say that wasn't
19 sufficient evidence yet for air support.
20 Q. And can you tell me now -- just continue with this topic. What
21 happened, whether air support was eventually called for.
22 A. In the end there has been a very limited amount of air support.
23 Q. Can you describe that. What -- how many planes, what happened,
24 and when it occurred, this limited air support.
25 A. First of all, I haven't witnessed this myself, so this is only
1 from indirect observations. But as far as I understood, there have been
2 one or two aircrafts that -- that could supply support for DutchBat
3 vehicle that was under attack. So we are talking about a very limited
4 amount of air support.
5 Q. And let me go back one minute, sorry. When you talked earlier
6 about meetings where Ramiz, is that Ramiz Becirovic?
7 A. Yes, that is him.
8 Q. And was it Commander Karremans who requested that air support and
9 the limited air support arrived?
10 A. That's what I assume, yes.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Faveau.
12 MS. FAVEAU: [Interpretation] This is also a leading question.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, it is a leading question, but I would suggest
14 that you pop up in a timely fashion because, for example, he is -- it was
15 a very short question, it has already been answered. And in any case, I
16 mean not much harm -- not much harm done, I mean, because it could have
17 easily been formulated in a different manner without any problems.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: I will try to avoid, Your Honour. I thought that
19 was one I could use to move things a bit quicker, but ...
20 Q. What was the VRS reaction to these air strikes on their positions?
21 A. As far as I can recall, at that point contact was made by the
22 soldiers imprisoned in Bratunac saying that air support endangered those
23 who had been taken prisoners and therefore it should stop. I have been
24 informed of a report of this approximate content, so this was a threat.
25 Q. And what was the threat to the soldiers imprisoned in Bratunac?
1 What would happen if the air strikes continued?
2 A. At that moment, this was not clear to me, but my impression was
3 that things would be not good for them.
4 Q. And just to be very clear, which soldiers being held in Bratunac
5 are we talking about? From which armed force?
6 A. These were DutchBat troops, soldiers that had been taken prisoners
7 from the observation posts taken over by the VRS.
8 Q. And if you know, is -- you've called it a threat. How was that
9 conveyed to DutchBat in Srebrenica, by [Previous translation
10 continues] ... that information?
11 A. As far as I can recall, this was a radio transmission from
12 Bratunac via our own radio receiver. A vehicle that had been captured, a
13 DutchBat vehicle, had its radio used in order to transmit the message.
14 Q. And did air strikes continue after this message was received or
15 what happened?
16 A. After that I have seen no further air support.
17 Q. Are you familiar with the term "blocking positions" as a military
19 A. Yes. One might say that the observation posts that had been taken
20 over or from which we had withdrawn and from which troops retreated to
21 Srebrenica later on took positions that would allow to observe and provide
22 protection. Such positions may be called blocking positions, as was the
23 case here.
24 Q. All right. And if you can just -- I guess you can't point on the
25 map. I don't know that we need to mark this, but can you just tell us on
1 the map that's before you, we see Srebrenica Bravo Company and below OP
2 Echo and OP Sierra or S, where were those blocking positions located?
3 A. From, for instance, you have heard the road towards Kolov. This
4 is a very windy road along which several positions were taken. Later on
5 you see this with the entry into the city itself. A little bit further
6 north from Kolov.
7 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... I'll ask you to just mark it
8 again --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, I think so, or if you have a better map you can
10 make use of that.
11 MR. NICHOLLS:
12 Q. If you can mark the approximate locations where the blocking
13 positions were set up after the OPs fell.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have now indicated this with
16 global markings along this road.
17 MR. NICHOLLS: For the record, that's the four marks in between
18 Echo --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And later on further north even
20 towards the city.
21 MR. NICHOLLS: All right. Thank you.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: So if you could kindly put your initials next to any
23 of those markings, either on the left- or on the right-hand side.
24 THE WITNESS: [Marks]
25 JUDGE AGIUS: It's okay, it's okay, thank you.
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
2 Q. Now, maybe we can do this just before we have to stop. Can you
3 tell me about where the population from Srebrenica went. You talked about
4 how people were crowded into Srebrenica and the shelling, the blocking
5 positions, the OPs falling. Can you tell me where the people went next
6 from Srebrenica. I'm talking about now the 9th, 10th of July.
7 A. The population mainly moved toward the city of Srebrenica itself.
8 Close to the city the area was full with people. Houses were packed with
9 people. A crowd of people had regrouped within and around the city.
10 Q. And you were in Srebrenica at this time. How did those people
11 appear to you, their physical state, their mental state, how they felt?
12 A. Personally, I have walked through the city at several occasions,
13 also because I had to move towards the Bravo Company that -- from the
14 Bravo Company to the place where the Muslim leadership was situated.
15 Walking through the city, I could see people looking very apathetically,
16 hungrily, very nervously. People were at a loss, asking you what was to
17 happen to them, asking me what could we do.
18 Q. And where did you go on the 10th of July from Srebrenica, where
19 did you go next, you personally?
20 A. I subsequently moved to the UN base near Potocari with the
21 DutchBat soldiers that were stationed in Srebrenica. This happened at the
22 moment when the situation had become hopeless, when the population started
23 moving towards Potocari by its own initiative, when the wounded were
24 transported from the hospital towards our camp in Potocari. If I remember
25 correctly, the defences of the Bravo Company were no longer held and were
1 run over by the Muslim population. So at that point the soldiers
2 accompanied the flow of refugees towards Potocari.
3 Q. This may be the last question today. Were you aware on that day
4 about civilian casualties from the shelling?
5 A. In any case, one mortar grenade came down close to the Bravo
6 Company, which wounded a little boy who was brought to the Bravo Company
7 to a shelter where I was myself, where he was given first aid. So there
8 were people hurt in the close vicinity of the camp.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: I think this would be a good time, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: So, Colonel, I thank you so much. You still have a
11 few days more with us. Not tomorrow, however, because tomorrow we have
12 plenary, as we have previously announced. So we will not be sitting. Mr.
13 Nicholls will presumably continue and finish with his examination-in-chief
14 by the end of the week. So he will take the whole of Thursday, as I take
15 it, and the whole of Friday.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: I won't take all of Friday for sure. I hope to
17 finish Thursday. I may go into Friday.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So that's putting on notice whoever will
19 go first from the Defence teams with cross-examination. Please be ready.
20 All right. Once more, thank you so much, Colonel.
21 Thank you, Mr. Nicholls and the rest.
22 We'll re-convene on Thursday morning at 9.00. Thank you.
23 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.46 p.m.,
24 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 21st day of
25 September, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.