1 Monday, 25 September 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Registrar, could you call the case, please.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
8 IT-05-88-T, the Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic et al.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam. And good morning to you.
10 The usual advisory, if there are any problems with interpretation,
11 please let me know. I see no significant absences amongst the Defence
12 teams. Prosecution is Mr. McCloskey and Mr. Nicholls. I think we can
14 Good morning to you, Colonel.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: I hope you had a good weekend.
17 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: We will make every effort to try and bring your
19 testimony to the end -- to an end the earliest possible.
20 WITNESS: PIETER BOERING [Resumed]
21 [Witness answered through interpreter]
22 JUDGE AGIUS: You don't seem that convinced.
23 THE WITNESS: We will see.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
25 So who is next? You're going to follow the same order as before,
1 Mr. Meek?
2 MR. MEEK: Well, we are with this witness, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you.
4 MR. MEEK: Thank you very much.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Meek is defending, together with Mr. Ostojic,
6 Colonel Beara.
7 Cross-examination by Mr. Meek:
8 Q. Good morning, sir. How are you?
9 A. Thank you.
10 Q. Did you have a nice weekend?
11 JUDGE AGIUS: You shouldn't repeat questions.
12 MR. MEEK: It's such a good question, Your Honour.
13 Could I have a little help on the ELMO? This is -- for
14 identification purposes I will not give it a number. For the record, this
15 is a copy of the hand -- the notes that this witness has been referring to
16 throughout his direct testimony and I'd ask that page 1 be put on the
18 Q. Colonel Beara -- Colonel Boering, excuse me, I have placed on the
19 ELMO a copy which I believe to be your handwritten notes; is that a fact?
20 A. That's correct.
21 Q. And this is the very first page of those notes, correct?
22 A. That's correct.
23 Q. And were these notes generated on the 14th of September 2006?
24 A. Well, some of them were. Others, when I was busy preparing in the
25 waiting room and was alone, I would just jot down some names to speed
1 things up; so some were, some weren't. It varies. They are just some
2 notes. They don't appear in any logical sequence. You requested a copy.
3 You're welcome to have one but I used this to make faster headway. It's
4 not a heavy document.
5 Q. Well, I see 14 September in upper left-hand middle. Do you see
7 A. I see that.
8 Q. So is that the day this first page of notes was generated by you,
9 if you remember, sir?
10 A. It's perfectly conceivable but the page I have in front of me for
11 today's starts with 25 September and it reads, "the second defender,
12 Mr. Meek."
13 Q. I'm not concerned with your notes for today's testimony but trust
14 me, I will be. I want to know about the ones on the ELMO. Can you see
15 them on the right screen?
16 A. I see that.
17 Q. These notes were taken during your proofing session with
18 Mr. McCloskey of the OTP, were they not?
19 A. That's partly correct but partly incorrect.
20 Q. All right. Thank you. Why don't we move right down to number 6
21 and I'm not sure 6 is on the ELMO. I only see 1 through 4. There we go.
22 Number 6 appears to be your handwriting and it says, Beara, correct?
23 A. That's correct.
24 Q. Then next to that I think is your handwritten in English, meeting,
25 is that what it says, underlined twice?
1 A. That's correct.
2 Q. And then to the right, it looks like March April with a line under
3 March and above April, that being circled; is that correct?
4 A. March, April.
5 Q. And then underneath -- and that's circled, correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Underneath that you have May/June; is that correct?
8 A. That's correct.
9 Q. And right to the right of that you have McCloskey underlined,
11 A. I can't really read that.
12 Q. You can't read your own handwriting, sir?
13 A. No, no, I really can't read it at this time. I'll take a look at
14 the original, if you really want to know.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 A. No. I can't even read it myself at this time.
17 Q. You'll agree with me it appears to be a capital M and a little C
18 and then C-l-l-s-k-y [as spelt]?
19 A. No. I really don't discern that.
20 Q. Why was May -- the May/June circled, if you can tell me, sir?
21 March/April, excuse me.
22 A. No, there was a meeting in late March or early April. It's a
23 messy way of jotting it down quickly. I assume that I must have done that
24 during one of the breaks in the room where I was waiting. Occasionally I
25 would prepare something and think back about exactly what happened.
1 Q. On the far right, you have -- and looks like a parentheses
2 perhaps. Can you read your handwriting on that note?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Well, does it say military personnel?
5 A. No.
6 Q. It's in English, isn't it?
7 A. Well, I can't figure it out at this time. I'm not playing games
8 with you but I wrote it down very quickly. Perhaps it was to organise my
9 own thoughts. I just don't remember any more.
10 Q. All right. Did you have your proofing session on 14 September
11 with Peter McCloskey from the Office of the Prosecutor, Colonel Boering?
12 A. I don't remember the exact dates any more but about two weeks ago,
13 it was on a Thursday, and Friday, I believe, I was here. So if I think
14 back, I could calculate whether that was the 14th. It's perfectly
16 Q. I'm not so concerned about the actual date but was it Peter
17 McCloskey you did your proofing session with the first day?
18 A. It wasn't with him, no. He greeted me very briefly and
19 subsequently I was handed over to somebody else.
20 Q. When you greeted him, Peter McCloskey, very briefly or when you
21 were handed over to somebody else were you told that McCloskey wanted you
22 to mention Ljubisa Beara [Realtime transcript read in error "maurz"] in
23 your testimony?
24 A. No, it didn't come in -- it didn't come into the picture. He
25 greeted me would briefly told me he was happy I was there and subsequently
1 I was handed over to somebody else. I don't remember anything else.
2 Q. Now, if the usher could just move it over to the next page under
3 number 9. Colonel, I'll just ask you can you read your own handwriting
4 under number 9?
5 A. One moment, because this is important. In line 22 on the previous
6 page, page 5, Mr. Meek's question should read, "You mention Beara," not
7 "maurz," "in your testimony." Beara, because "maurz" doesn't mean
9 Q. That's correct, Your Honour?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: It's a significant alteration that needs to be
12 MR. MEEK: That's correct, Your Honour, and I appreciate you
13 pointing that out.
14 Q. Let's go back to 9 that you are circled on the second page of your
15 handwritten notes you've been referring to in your direct examination,
17 A. I see it.
18 Q. And now -- and very quickly, that sheet notes it was the 15th of
19 September, correct? I think that's going to be further down,
20 Colonel Boering.
21 A. On my original copy I don't see anything about September 15. I
22 don't see anything.
23 Q. You're correct. You're correct. That's about the fourth page.
24 I'm going to skip that for right now.
25 Can you read your own handwriting on 9, that is circled?
1 A. Yes. I see, "Three meetings in Fontana there, 11 and 12. 11/12"
2 and after that it reads, "Read through."
3 Q. Okay. Thank you.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: May I ask you a question, Colonel? These are notes
5 prepared by you for yourself for the purpose of this testimony to speed
6 up. Why did you prepare them in English and not in your own language?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Sometimes I write in English,
8 sometimes I write in Dutch. In Ministry I work with a Dutch general and
9 sometimes I speak English with him too. It intermingles. Sometimes we
10 speak English, sometimes we speak Dutch. We are a bit sloppy about that.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
12 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. Now, just turn to the very last page of your notes before, I mean
14 the notes that we made copies of last week, if you would. And I'll tell
15 you right now it says 15 September, S-e-p-t, 0900 Julian. You see that?
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Can we have it on the ELMO, Madam Usher,
18 MR. MEEK:
19 Q. Colonel Boering, I take it you met with Julian from the Office of
20 the Prosecutor on the 15th of September for further proofing for your
21 direct testimony, correct?
22 A. It's perfectly possible. I assume that to have been the case,
24 Q. Well, I'm going to ask you to just look to your right to the
25 lawyer sitting right there who questioned you on direct examination, do
1 you have any personal recollection of meeting with him on the 15th of
2 September or any time prior to your testimony?
3 A. Of course.
4 Q. Okay. Why would you tell me that it's entirely possible, then?
5 A. Well, that gets back to the 14th and the 15th. I have to check my
6 diary, if you want to know exactly, and look at Thursday and Friday.
7 Q. We may look at that in a moment. Now, going back to the first
8 page, if you just skim that for a moment, Colonel Boering, I submit to you
9 that this is exactly the outline of your direct examination, was it not?
10 A. Yes. I see several -- there is a certain pattern here.
11 Q. And that pattern was suggested to you by the Office of the
12 Prosecutor, the people you met with, to proof you and get you prepared for
13 your testimony here in this Court, correct?
14 A. Well, these subjects would be addressed in this fashion.
15 Q. Please tell me which member of the Office of the Prosecutor staff
16 told you, you needed to testify about Colonel Beara when you testified?
17 A. Nobody said that.
18 Q. Okay. Thank you, sir. I think that's all we need for the ELMO,
19 right now.
20 Colonel Boering, on your direct examination you talked a little
21 bit about the structure of DutchBat III; do you recall that testimony?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Can you please just give me an overview of what the structure of
24 DutchBat III was, starting with who was the chief, the top commander?
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Can I intervene for a moment? Does a document exist
1 which shows the entire structure? That could help us get through this.
2 Because if it does it may simplify matters.
3 MR. MEEK: Your Honour, I don't believe it does. He talked about
4 the -- Karremans and Franken. I just want to go through it briefly.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: But in the meantime if we can follow better.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: I'll check, Your Honour. I don't have one right
7 at my fingertips. I'm not sure whether we have such a diagram at the
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Go ahead. Mr. Meek.
10 MR. MEEK:
11 Q. Colonel Boering, was Lieutenant Colonel Karremans the head guy
12 there, if you recall?
13 A. But of course.
14 Q. Did he have a deputy commander?
15 A. Yes. He had one locally, that was Major Franken.
16 Q. And just -- Colonel, just going on down the line, just tell us who
17 was underneath Franken, then.
18 A. Yes, I can tell you that.
19 Q. Thank you, please do.
20 A. What would you like to know about them.
21 Q. I would just like to know their names and who they were over.
22 A. There was somebody who was major of operations; that was Major
23 Frahagen [phoen]. There was somebody who was responsible for II; that
24 was Captain Weaver [phoen]. There was somebody for personnel; that was
25 Captain Foreman. And there was the camp base commander; that was Captain
1 Hrun [phoen]. He was in Srebrenica. And there was a camp base commander
2 for Potocari; that it was Captain Matajson [phoen]. And there was a
3 commander for staff care; that was Major van Beeren [phoen]. Those were a
4 few names.
5 Q. You were the liaison officer; is that correct?
6 A. S5-liaison officer.
7 Q. Your direct superior would have been who, sir?
8 A. That was Lieutenant Colonel Karremans.
9 Q. So when you reported, you reported directly to Karremans and not
10 through his deputy commander, Franken, is that your testimony?
11 A. Sometimes the communication went through Major Franken. Sometimes
12 it was via Karremans. It depended how busy Karremans was and the
13 reporting procedure. Major Franken was also led of logistics. In the
14 first part of my work, which related to requests from the Muslim
15 population for care, hospitals, schools and the like, we would examine
16 first whether we could handle the logistics, and then Major Franken would
17 be assigned to that. So before I reported things to I -- to Lieutenant
18 Colonel Frankens [as interpreted], I would first check with Major Franken
19 whether we would be able to arrange that.
20 Q. Would you have daily meetings, sir, during this period, from
21 January of 1995 until July 1995? And when I say that, I mean daily
22 meetings with your DutchBat people.
23 A. Well, the morning would start around half past 7.00, with the
24 staff getting together, and in the afternoon, I believe around 3.00 or
25 half past 3.00 a small group of the staff would review the events of the
1 day, often including Lieutenant Colonel Karremans, Major Franken, and
2 myself, and perhaps two or three others.
3 Q. Did you and/or others generate written reports, say, after your
4 3.00 or 3.30 p.m. meetings on a daily basis?
5 A. I reported to my superiors in Tuzla once a week. There were
6 internal reports among the five of us orally, or writing down in a tiny
7 little booklet about what happened. The battalion drafted a daily
8 situation report to the superiors and sometimes there was a paragraph
9 about CIMIC and the liaison, and I would then be asked to write that out
10 or check whether it was accurate.
11 Q. Who was the officer or individual who had the job to keep custody
12 of the tiny little booklet where you wrote down things that happened on a
13 daily basis, sir?
14 A. I didn't have an individual who was responsible for storing things
15 and writing them down for me. There was somebody who often accompanied
16 me. That was Sergeant-Major Rave, and he would also jot down somethings
17 for his own work so at meetings, when we were together, I often was the
18 spokesperson and he would take notes, and after the meeting we would
19 review them.
20 Q. You didn't destroy those, did you? Didn't you keep that tiny
21 little book?
22 A. When I returned to Kladanj, I didn't have a lot with me. I had a
23 T-shirt, some shorts, and a pistol, not my things. My things were sent
24 back to me later on, and some things were missing. At any rate, I don't
25 have any more notes from that period.
1 Q. If you know, Colonel Boering, what happened to all of the daily
2 sit-coms that were sent to Tuzla and elsewhere from DutchBat III?
3 A. I don't know.
4 Q. Now, Colonel Boering, you discussed in your direct examination two
5 meetings with Mr. Beara, did you not? Do you recall that today? I know
6 it was last week but do you recall that today?
7 A. Yes. I remember, and it's also in the notes of mine that you
8 quoted from.
9 Q. And last week, you testified that your memory was much better in
10 1995 than it is today; is that correct?
11 A. If we are talking about the things that happened at the time,
12 there are many things that I could remember far back then than I do now.
13 I remember perfectly well what happened yesterday at this time.
14 Q. Do you recall testifying under oath last week that memories do
15 fade and that you had a better recollection of what occurred in 1995 from
16 January through July 12th, than you did last week, for example?
17 A. I don't know if this question is formulated correctly but as I
18 read it back here, it sounds very illogical.
19 Q. Let me rephrase it. Do you believe that your memory concerning
20 the events that the Office of the Prosecutor has brought you here to
21 testify about are better today than they were in 1995, soon after the
22 events occurred and when they were fresh on your memory?
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Meek, this is taking too long and I suggest
24 instead of going in a round about fashion, if you have a source that you
25 would like to confront the witness with, go straight there. Do exactly
1 like Mr. Nicholls did when he was examining the witness in chief, and then
2 put the question to him whether he believes that his recollection,
3 previous recollection, nearer to the date is more reliable.
4 Yes, Mr. Nicholls?
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Just for the record I think at page 12, line 9, the
6 witness agreed to the proposition in any event.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes but he also contested the way the question was
8 being put so he did agree, I agree with you, but if there is --
9 MR. MEEK: That's fine, judge. I thought he agreed too and I
10 didn't -- so I'll go on.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Go ahead because we are going around in circles.
12 MR. MEEK: I'd like to show the witness Exhibit 2 D00004 [sic].
13 By the way, for the record, while the witness is looking at this, this is
14 his witness statement 28 September 1995, given to the Office of the
15 Prosecutor. Interviewer was Erma Oosterman.
16 Q. Now, as a preliminary matter, Colonel Boering, you reviewed all of
17 your written statements before you came here to testify, didn't you?
18 A. I was given all of them to read over but I didn't read all of them
19 over, considering how thick the document was. I had to leaf through quite
20 a bit quickly.
21 Q. Well, Exhibit 2 D0004 is only eight pages long, nine pages long.
22 Did you read it? It's your very first statement to the OTP.
23 A. Yes. I read it. I scanned it.
24 Q. Will you please -- I could be happy to give you a hard copy so
25 that we don't have to go page through page. Can you point out where in
1 your first statement to the OTP, September 28, 1995, approximately three
2 and a half months after the events were fresh on your mind, where Mr.
3 Beara is mentioned by you even one time?
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, I think the witness needs to have a copy of
5 this statement at his disposal.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: I have completely clean copies if you need it.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you want to have a look at the copy that Mr. Meek
8 has --
9 MR. NICHOLLS: No, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I remember this first examination
12 correctly, I believe it was by Mrs. Oosterman. The main focus was rapes
13 and abuse of women. That's what the examination was focused on so it
14 wasn't an in-depth examination but focused on wrong doings that I saw.
15 That's what's in my memory. Perhaps I should read it to dredge it back in
16 my memory but the examination always reflects the purpose of the
18 MR. MEEK:? Very well, Colonel. Let's just look at that for a
19 minute, then. Page 2 of the statement, Witness statement, which is really
20 page 1, where you start, just skim down through it. You talk about the
21 people you made contact with and maintained contact with on both sides of
22 this action, the Muslim army and the Serbian army, correct?
23 A. Correct.
24 Q. You talk about Suvanovic [phoen], Nikolic, Sarkic, Vukovic,
1 A. That's what it reads.
2 Q. I'm already on the second page. Haven't seen anything about
3 rapes. Do you?
4 A. I remember this being the purpose of the investigation. Perhaps I
5 heard that in the introduction to the conversation. It was a long time
7 Q. Perhaps you're thinking about a different statement, correct?
8 A. No, I don't think so.
9 Q. All right. Let's just go on down the next page. Then you start
10 talking about the contacts you had with the Muslim soldiers, correct?
11 Naser Oric, Ramic, Ekrem, Zulfo, you see that?
12 A. Yes, I see that.
13 Q. Then you talk a little bit about the mayor of Srebrenica and the
14 deputy mayor, correct? I'm looking at page 4.
15 A. That's correct.
16 Q. Now I'm looking at page 5, now you go into the meetings at the
17 Hotel Fontana, correct? Even on page 6 you're still talking about the
18 meetings, correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Page 7, still on the meetings, aren't we, and your drive back to
21 Bratunac and the voluntary evacuation, correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Page 8 and the end of your statement is 9, talks about you leaving
24 with the column and where you're dropped off in the vicinity of Kladanj.
25 You see that, the last page?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. All right. Well, appears to me that Erma Oosterman was asking you
3 a lot about the different personalities and soldiers from the ABiH army
4 and the Bosnian Serb army, wasn't she?
5 A. I see what I said at the time, and what the questions were. I can
6 see, yes.
7 Q. And you'll agree with me that your memory of the events and the
8 personalities and the players during that time period were much fresher on
9 your memory in September of 1995 than they were in 1998 or 2000 when you
10 testified in Krstic, or even last week, isn't that a fair statement?
11 A. Yes. In 1995, it's fresher in your memory than in 1998 or 2000.
12 Perhaps they probed a bit more at the time.
13 Q. Thank you very much. And again, just for the record, you never
14 one time mentioned Mr. Beara in your first debriefing to the OTP,
15 September 28, 1995, did you, Colonel?
16 A. I don't see it in this text, no.
17 Q. Thank you. Now, you gave several different debriefings and
18 statements to the Dutch military and government, did you not?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Did you deem it appropriate to review those before you came here
21 to testify?
22 A. Before I came here, I asked the Prosecutor to refresh my memory,
23 and I was able to review some things here, and looked at the NIOD report
24 as well, to the best of my ability. NIOD being the Netherlands State
25 Institute of War Documentation.
1 Q. Thank you, Colonel, for that answer. Nowhere in any of your
2 debriefings to the Dutch government, did you ever mention Mr. Beara, isn't
3 that true?
4 A. I really don't know.
5 Q. Well, I'm not going to take up any more time with this issue but I
6 tell you what, Colonel. I will give you copies of each one of those
7 statements I have. You can read them at the break and, if I'm wrong, you
8 can tell me. Would that be fair?
9 MR. NICHOLLS: No. I would object.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: But we didn't give you permission to speak,
11 Mr. Nicholls.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: I apologise.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Colonel, what's your position on the proposition
14 that has been made to you by Mr. Meek?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I wonder whether he has all
16 the statements I made to the Ministry of Defence or the Dutch government.
17 But if he's willing to give them to me, I'll be happy to look and see
18 whether they are complete but I don't know whether they are complete
19 because I made so many statements, including some in closed session.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Does that answer your question, Mr. Meek?
21 MR. MEEK: Yes, it does, Your Honour. I'll be happy to give him
22 everything I have from the Dutch government, his statements which I have
23 received from the Office of the Prosecutor. I honestly don't know if I
24 have everything. We always wonder whether we have all the statements in
25 this business. I'll do that.
1 Q. Colonel --
2 JUDGE AGIUS: And how long would the break need to be, then?
3 MR. MEEK: Oh, the same amount of time, Judge. They are short
4 statements. They are only a page or two long, the ones I have.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. And then he will tell us whether --
6 MR. MEEK: Not now. We don't need a break now.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Of course not. Go ahead.
8 MR. MEEK:
9 Q. Now, Colonel Boering, can you tell us, please, when was the first
10 time that you remember that you ever mentioned Mr. Beara in any of your
12 A. No, I don't remember that.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls? What was your objection to the
15 MR. NICHOLLS: None. I was just thinking instead of giving the
16 witness homework during the break he could just put the statements in and
17 then the Trial Chamber could see for themselves whether it's mentioned.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: But we still need to know when that is a complete
19 picture of his statements to the Dutch authorities or not. At the end of
20 the day, yes, we can read them or -- but that's not the point.
21 MR. MEEK:
22 Q. Colonel Boering, can I put it to you that the first time that you
23 ever mention my client, Mr. Beara, was when you asked the Prosecutor to
24 refresh your memory? You just said that under oath page 16, line 19. You
25 said, "I asked the Prosecutor to refresh my memory" and I put it to you
1 that that happened 3rd through the 6th or the 10th of February 1998 when
2 someone from the Prosecutor's Office "refreshed your recollection -- your
3 memory" by telling you that you had some meetings with Ljubisa Beara, that
4 you had two meetings.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: What's the basis for that question? I would be
6 interested to know.
7 MR. MEEK: The basis of the question, Your Honour is his statement
8 under oath that he asked the prosecutor to refresh his memory and I'm
9 going to show him the February 1998 statement when he first mentioned Mr.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: But I don't think his previous statement was made in
12 the context. I don't think that the statement that you're referring to
13 here on page 16 was made in the context of the 1998 statement.
14 MR. MEEK: All right. Let me ask.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: You're tying the two together as if the 1998
16 statement was cooked by the -- by the investigator and eaten by the
18 MR. MEEK: Thank you, judge.
19 Q. Let me ask you: Colonel Boering --
20 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, because I see Mr. Nicholls on his feet.
21 MR. NICHOLLS: Well, that was exactly my objection, Your Honour.
22 At page 16, line 19, the witness is very clear about the period he's
23 talking about. He said "before I came here," meaning now, not in 1998.
24 There is --
25 MR. MEEK: Very well, Judge. Let's put it to the witness.
1 Q. In 1998 you came in you gave a statement to Richard Butler who
2 worked for the Office of the Prosecutor at the time. You remember
3 Mr. Butler?
4 A. No. I'd have to see his face. I do remember being there around
5 that time.
6 Q. So do you have any independent recollection of spending four to
7 five days or longer doing an interview with the Office of the Prosecutor,
8 specifically Asif Syed and Richard Butler, yes or no?
9 A. I don't remember it specifically with this man, but I was here.
10 Q. Okay. And do you remember -- I don't care if you specifically
11 remember the individual, but do you remember, sir, that it was the
12 interviewers from the Office of the Prosecutor for this Tribunal who first
13 mentioned to you Mr. Beara's name? You didn't mention it to them, they
14 mentioned it to you. Do you remember that, sir?
15 A. No. I don't remember that.
16 Q. Okay. Fair enough. Could have been. Could be so, could be no,
17 correct? I'll go on.
18 You had weekly meetings with representatives from the --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment because when you say, could be yes, could
20 be not, is not a correct presentation of his answer. Your question was
21 very specific. In other words, whether he was prompted by the
22 Prosecution, by the investigator, and his answer was he does not remember
23 that being the case. Which basically means no to your answer so it's not
24 could be yes and could be no.
25 MR. MEEK: Well, Your Honour, the way I heard it and I read on the
1 screen now, I heard it, "I don't remember." And when I hear "I don't
2 remember" that means, well, I don't remember, could have been yes, could
3 have been no. That's how I took it. I apologise.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Colonel, let's be clear about this. Mr. Meek's
5 question was a very simple one and he asked you that -- he suggested to
6 you that it was the interviewers from the Office of the Prosecutor for
7 this Tribunal who first mentioned to you Mr. Beara's name, and then he was
8 very specific, he asked -- he told you, "You didn't mention it to them.
9 They mentioned it to you. Do you remember that, sir?" And your answer
10 was, "No, I don't remember that."
11 What did you mean by your answer? That in other words it could
12 have been the case or that it certainly wasn't the case that Beara's name
13 was first mentioned to you by the Prosecutor? Or by the investigator,
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Colonel Beara's name was definitely
16 not the first one mentioned by the Prosecutor. Perhaps in an old DutchBat
17 report this could be investigated, in one of the archives. I may have
18 mentioned this internally to DutchBat after the first meetings with
19 Colonel Beara.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Make sure that this is not an interpretation
21 problem. When I read your answer here in the transcript, "Colonel Beara's
22 name was definitely not the first one mentioned by the Prosecutor," to me
23 means that the Prosecutor mentioned a list of names on which Beara's was
24 not the first one but basically it would still mean that the names were
25 forthcoming from the investigator and not from yourself. Is that what you
1 meant to say?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I mentioned the name. That's what I
4 JUDGE AGIUS: So it was a problem of interpretation, Mr. Meek. As
5 I suspected it to be.
6 MR. MEEK: Well, Your Honour, I'm not going to really disagree
7 with you but I don't believe it was.
8 Q. The OTP mentioned names to you in that 1998 interview, did they
9 not, Colonel?
10 A. Yes. That was about eight years ago, and of course I mentioned
11 names of people I had seen and then --
12 JUDGE AGIUS: I had hoped I wouldn't start the week like this but
13 it seems I was hoping against hope.
14 The question was not whether you mentioned, started mentioning
15 names to the investigator but whether it's true that the investigators
16 started mentioning names to you. Let's do it in a different manner.
17 During this 1998 interview, did you mention names to the investigator
18 which the investigator himself --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: -- had not mentioned to you before?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
22 MR. MEEK: He didn't wait for the Dutch interpretation.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: And did it also happen during that interview, 1998,
24 that the investigator or investigators mentioned also to you names that
25 you yourself had not mentioned to them until then?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't remember.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: And there is where it ends as far as I'm concerned
3 because the next was -- would have been, was Beara amongst them.
4 MR. MEEK: Okay. Thank you, judge. I think that's as clear as
5 mud but we'll go forward, okay?
6 Q. Now, Colonel, you'll agree with me that the first time you
7 mentioned Mr. Beara's name was approximately three years after the event,
8 in 1998?
9 A. I really don't remember.
10 Q. Thank you. Now, I presume, since you have testified previously in
11 other cases in this Tribunal, that you also asked the Prosecutor in those
12 cases to refresh your memory on events, did you not, like you did in this
14 A. I really don't know where you're going with these questions. They
15 seem to repeat themselves.
16 Q. Colonel Boering, we are now talking about 2000, prior to your
17 testifying in the Krstic case. Do you recall testifying in the Krstic
19 A. Yes, I do remember.
20 Q. Will you agree with me, and the Trial Chamber can take judicial
21 notice of his own files and that transcript, you never mentioned Mr. Beara
22 in your entire testimony in that case. Do you recall that?
23 A. No, I can't remember.
24 Q. Okay. Thank you. 2003, you testified in the Blagojevic and Jokic
25 case. You remember that?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Colonel Boering, do you remember that in your direct testimony,
3 that means questions you answered from the Prosecutor, put to you in that
4 case, you never mentioned Mr. Beara?
5 A. Well, I really don't remember.
6 Q. The Trial Chamber could take judicial notice of the direct
7 examination in that case. Colonel Beara [sic], you don't ever remember
8 them mentioning Mr. Beara in any of your previous testimony before this
9 case; is that your testimony?
10 A. At this moment, I really don't remember.
11 Q. Thank you. Now, do you recall, in the spring of 1995, there being
12 a helicopter crash in the vicinity of where you were stationed?
13 A. Yes. A helicopter did crash at one time.
14 Q. For the record, do you recall approximately the month of that
15 helicopter crash?
16 A. Well, perhaps March.
17 Q. Okay. Can you tell us who was riding in the helicopter when it
19 A. Well, presumably it had to do with Muslim ABiH, and if I remember
20 correctly, there were some people who died and in the enclave people were
21 buried, and people were secretive about it, as to who was -- were involved
22 at the funeral service. But, yes, yes. Yes, there was a link, yes.
23 Q. Did you ever determine or did DutchBat ever determine that the
24 ABiH were bringing in weapons or ammunition when that helicopter went
1 A. I don't think that this was clear evidence. It was a suspicion.
2 Q. Now, it was approximately how long after that that you were at the
3 Hotel Fontana and had a meeting with Major Nikolic and there were other
4 officers from DutchBat and Mr. Beara was there? Do you recall? Was it
5 several weeks or a month or --
6 A. Well, whether there was a link in the time, not really, but I
7 suspect a couple of weeks afterwards.
8 Q. Thank you. Now, you had weekly meetings with both the ABiH
9 representatives and the Serbian representatives, correct, at the Fontana?
10 A. ABiH was not -- I mean, the meeting was in Srebrenica and the
11 Serbian representative was in Fontana. Serbian representative might have
12 been once every two weeks at Yellow Bridge and in Fontana you could say
13 once every two months perhaps.
14 Q. And do you recall the meeting where you met Mr. Beara at the
15 Fontana Hotel along with, besides yourself, was Major Rave and Piet Hein
16 or one or the other?
17 A. Yes. I can remember that there was this meeting.
18 Q. How many DutchBat or United Nations personnel were with you
19 besides yourself and Sergeant-Major Rave or Piet Hein or both?
20 A. Perhaps a fourth person but I don't know exactly. It had to do
21 with -- if Piet Hein was there, it had to do with trade in Fontana.
22 Drinks and food was also purchased for DutchBat at Fontana so perhaps he
23 also had a driver with him, you know, to load the truck with food and
24 drink. We paid for that.
25 Q. Well, do you recall there being two African Dutch soldiers or
1 African United Nations soldiers with you on that day?
2 A. Well, I don't remember, but -- on one or two occasions there would
3 be -- the UNMO from Srebrenica would come along, could be but I don't
5 Q. Okay. And let me refresh your recollection, if I can. Do you
6 recall that on that meeting, it was a luncheon meeting, and that you had
7 food and you had drinks, you had meat, lamb, fish, you remember that?
8 A. Well, specifically, whether it was at that meeting, I do not know,
9 but what I do remember is that when we went to pick up merchandise, often
10 there was a lunch linked to it.
11 Q. Do you recall that it was a luncheon-type meeting where you met
12 Mr. Beara at the Fontana Hotel, sir?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Do you remember that there was a woman there?
15 A. No, I can't remember.
16 Q. Do you remember there were two black soldiers there that were
17 going to sit at another table until Mr. Beara said no, come sit with us,
18 and you put a separate table at the end so that the black soldiers could
19 sit with you and eat lunch? Do you remember that, sir?
20 A. No, I don't remember.
21 Q. Okay. You do remember, though, that Mr. Beara was very interested
22 in who was in that helicopter when it went down. Do you remember that,
23 sir, or not?
24 A. Yes. That was in a conversation with him.
25 Q. Okay. And before we go any further, after that meeting, at the
1 Fontana Hotel, where you had the luncheon and had the drinks and lunch, et
2 cetera, you never shared -- you never saw Mr. Beara again, nor did you
3 ever share any information with him; is that correct?
4 A. This is the second meeting with Colonel Beara, if I'm correct, and
5 after that I didn't see him any more.
6 Q. Now, little bit before that meeting that you claim was the second
7 meeting, do you recall a village named Vlasic which had been burned by the
8 ABiH soldiers who had left on raids during the night, V-l-a-s-i-c-h [sic],
10 A. Well, at this point, I myself don't remember the village Vlasic.
11 Q. Let me try to refresh your recollection. This was an incident
12 where seven Serbs were killed, they were seven woodcutters, and they had
13 been killed and the houses burned by the ABiH soldiers coming out of the
14 enclave? Do you remember that?
15 A. No, I don't remember.
16 Q. You do remember, don't you, Colonel Boering, that the ABiH
17 soldiers would frequently make raids on the outlying Serbian villages at
18 night from the enclave, correct?
19 A. Yes. That occurred regularly. I myself did not see it, but I --
20 it was reported to me often.
21 Q. And you've indicated at least in your written report in 1998,
22 three years after these events, that Mr. Beara was extremely interested in
23 knowing the whereabouts of Naser Oric. Isn't that true, sir?
24 A. Yes. That's correct.
25 Q. And didn't he, in fact, ask you --
1 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment.
2 Mr. Nicholls?
3 Thank you.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: I just want to be clear for the record, the
5 question was asked about a written report in 1998. Is that the ICTY
7 MR. MEEK: Yes, it is.
8 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you both.
10 MR. MEEK:
11 Q. Mr. Beara asked you, didn't he, various questions about Naser
12 Oric, if he was in the helicopter, if you knew where he was, what exactly
13 was his position with the ABiH army. Do you remember that, Colonel?
14 A. Yes. I do remember.
15 Q. And you remember Mr. Beara telling you that it was untenable that
16 the ABiH army was continually leaving the enclave on raids at night and
17 burning Serbian villages and killing Serb civilians and raping the women
18 and that if he could meet with him and try to talk some sense into him
19 maybe these raids would stop?
20 A. I remember something like that, that Colonel Beara indicated
22 Q. And do you recall that Mr. Beara informed you, Colonel Boering,
23 that the Serbian population in that vicinity was putting a lot of pressure
24 on the VRS to stop these nightly raids and that the army was getting a lot
25 of pressure? Do you recall that, sir?
1 A. No, I don't remember.
2 Q. Well, you've testified that it was your knowledge that this was
3 happening. You can understand how the VRS army may have been getting a
4 lot of pressure because of these raids and this killing and plundering,
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Now --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, because we need to clarify this,
9 especially after your last question. On page 27, lines 13 to 17, you were
10 asked a question, the following question by Mr. Meek: "You do remember,
11 don't you, Colonel Boering, that the ABiH soldiers would frequently make
12 raids on the outlying Serbian villages at night from the enclave,
13 correct?" And you answered, according to the transcript, "Yes, that
14 occurred regularly. I myself did not see it but it was reported to me
16 If you could, please explain to us who used to report this to you
17 and how often you would receive such reports? Thank you.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the information we received of
19 these events mainly came from the side of VRS, Major Nikolic, Momir
20 Nikolic, and did not come from the ABiH side itself. So it was unilateral
21 information that we could not check and we didn't have any liberty or
22 freedom of action outside the enclave.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: And how often?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You could say if there was a meeting
25 with Major Momir Nikolic once every two, sometimes three weeks, this would
1 be one of the standard subjects that he would talk about. And sometimes
2 he actually also indicated the location and the nature of the event.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
4 MR. MEEK:
5 Q. Colonel Boering, just to follow up on that, there would be nothing
6 abnormal about you having those reports from, for example, Major Nikolic,
7 rather than an ABiH contact coming in and telling you and bragging to you
8 about how they had just burned down a Serbian village last night and
9 killed seven people, correct?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think we need to go into this. It's so
11 obvious, Mr. Meek. The whole purpose of the question was to elicit
12 information from the witness whether the DutchBat could investigate or
13 keep itself informed from independent sources.
14 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Judge.
15 Q. Colonel Boering, I want to ask you one question real briefly. One
16 of your missions was to demilitarise the enclave; is that correct?
17 A. Yes, that's correct.
18 Q. And you would agree with me that if you would have done your job,
19 that the ABiH army would not have been leaving on these night-time raids,
21 A. Well, we didn't have the mandate to search houses.
22 Q. Okay. Well, you're familiar with your colleague, Eelco Koster, a
23 DutchBat soldier, correct?
24 A. Yes, I know him.
25 Q. I would like to read you about two sentences from a statement he
1 made to the Office of the Prosecutor on 25 and 26 September 1995. I will
2 put it on in English, Judge, I do not have B/C/S. It is Exhibit number
3 D -- 2 D00010.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls?
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Just, Your Honour, I thought you made a ruling on
6 this the other day that we would be putting statements to the witnesses
7 without pitting witnesses against one another.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Is he a witness? Does he -- does this Mr. Koster or
9 Officer Koster, give evidence in this Tribunal or not? Because from the
10 way Mr. Meek put it, he's going to show us a statement that he made, an
11 out-of-court statement and not testimony.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour, thank you.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: That makes a difference.
14 MR. MEEK:
15 Q. It's on page 6 of the English version, third paragraph.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment because I think we have a problem. I am
17 not seeing -- did you hand it over to the staff for incorporation in the
18 e-court system?
19 MR. MEEK: I believe it was scanned to e-court. I have a clean
20 copy if you just want to put the front page and page 6. It will only take
21 a moment.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Let's resort to that. In the meantime,
23 someone checks, please. It's not? I'm informed that it's not, Mr. Meek.
24 It's not amongst the --
25 MR. MEEK: I'll check with Ms. Mulder, Your Honour. It should
1 have been. For the record I just want to show him the very first page
2 showing that it's soldier Koster making this statement, 25, 26 September,
3 1995 and then go to page 6.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. One moment. Because contrary to what I
5 have been informed it can be -- it is there. It is there, 2 D? That's
6 the reference, Judge Kwon?
7 JUDGE KWON: 2 D00010. I have even the translation.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
9 We found it. It exists, there is also the relative or
10 corresponding translation.
11 Thank you, Judge Kwon.
12 MR. MEEK:
13 Q. And Colonel, please just look at the third paragraph down, if
14 you'll just review that briefly, starts with, "until mid-June, I turned
15 out three or four times with my unit from the compound in the direction of
17 MR. MEEK: We need page 6 on the e-court.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Page 6, please.
19 MR. MEEK: Could zoom in on the third paragraph once we get there.
21 Q. Now, Colonel, have you had a chance just to review that third
22 paragraph? It's not long.
23 A. Yes. I've read it.
24 Q. Do you agree with your colleague Koster, when he stated because he
25 was out in the enclave, "it struck me that each time we turned out, there
1 were more Muslim fighters in the town than before. At that time we were
2 no longer able to fulfil the policy requirements of the demilitarised
3 zone. By this I mean that there were so many Muslim fighters walking
4 around armed that we UN soldiers were incapable of disarming these
6 Do you agree with that, sir?
7 A. I myself didn't see it the way he refers to it. I mean it's his
8 statement. But in due course, it became more difficult to disarm ABiH.
9 That was a problem for the whole of DutchBat. I know about that. But
10 this incident, this report, I don't know.
11 Q. Thank you. And again, according to your colleague Koster's
12 statement, this was by mid-June, a month before the fall, there were so
13 many armed Muslim fighters that they couldn't disarm them. And you'll
14 agree with me that Koster was out and about more than you were?
15 A. Well, I don't know about that.
16 Q. So you don't dispute that DutchBat just couldn't disarm the
17 Muslims from June on?
18 A. Well, I think that from mid-June, they sort of turned a blind eye
19 and allowed for it, if Muslim fighters, armed Muslim fighters walked
20 around with Kalashnikovs.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Just a clarification. Line 12, well, "I think that
22 from mid-June, they sort of turned a blind eye."
23 "They" who? Who are you referring to? Who turned a blind eye?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] DutchBat itself.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
1 MR. MEEK:
2 Q. I want to talk briefly with you about your alleged meeting, first
3 meeting, with Mr. Beara. When was that again, Colonel?
4 A. Well, yes, and that brings us back to my notes. That was
5 somewhere in March, end of March, early April.
6 Q. Who called that meeting?
7 A. Well, to my recollection, this person came from VRS.
8 Q. So it's your testimony that some person came from the VRS,
9 personally, and asked you to come to a meeting?
10 A. No. For that we had Petar as an interpreter in Bratunac, and he
11 would contact us by mobile phone.
12 Q. When I read your answer, that Petar as an interpreter would
13 contact you by mobile phone, Colonel, I want to know do you have a
14 specific recollection of who it was that contacted you about this
15 purported meeting you Chamber you had with Mr. Beara and how was it done?
16 Was it in person? Was it mobile phone? Was it fax? Please tell me.
17 A. I take it that things went through Petar, through a sort of
18 walkie-talkie connection. We did not have fax connections and sometimes
19 we would get a message from Yellow Bridge to the post yellow papa,
20 OP-Papa, that something had been seen but as to this meeting and how this
21 meeting was requested, I do not know, not 100 per cent sure.
22 Q. Thank you. That was my only question. You are really don't know
23 how it came about. Now, what time, if you know, and if you don't know,
24 please just say, "I don't know." What time were you advised that someone
25 wanted you to come to the Jovo check-point?
1 A. Well, the time, I'm not sure about that time now.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Meek --
4 MR. MEEK: I only have about ten minutes left, Your Honour. Now
5 would be a good time to take a break. I'll show the usher which short
6 debriefing statements I have in English and -- thank you.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. We'll have a 25-minute break starting
8 from now. Thank you.
9 --- Recess taken at 10.29 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 11.01 a.m.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Meek?
12 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Mr. President.
13 Q. Colonel Boering, I'm going to try to get through this very
14 quickly. Over the break, you were given four different copies of
15 documents from your Srebrenica debriefing by the Royal Netherlands Army,
17 A. I received four documents from you. If you look at them carefully
18 see that there is a question mark on one. That's somebody else who's also
19 named Boering. So the statement by soldier Boering is not my statement
20 and I am familiar with the other documents.
21 Q. And for the record, you never mentioned Mr. Beara in any of those
22 debriefings, did you?
23 A. That's because of the purpose of this investigation. It was a
24 brief investigation under the aegis of the military police focused on the
25 role of DutchBat and possible crimes we might have seen.
1 Q. Colonel Boering, please, maybe it's translation, I don't know, not
2 to be rude, but I didn't ask you about the purpose of these debriefings.
3 My simple question was: Mr. Beara was never mentioned, yes or no?
4 A. I explained why he wasn't mentioned.
5 Q. All right. Briefly back earlier, page 11, line 7, you testified
6 that the battalion drafted a daily situation report to the superiors and
7 sometimes there is a paragraph about CIMIC. And what exactly is CIMIC?
8 It's misspelled in the record. It should be CIMIC, correct, Colonel?
9 A. That's correct. CIMIC was -- in fact the role it was an unclear
10 reference to the support for the local populace. CIMIC stands for civil
11 military contacts. So partly civilian, if you're in touch with the local
12 population; MI denotes military. So it's an explanation for military
13 contacts with the civilians for carrying out projects.
14 Q. Thank you. Now, going back to this purported first meeting by
15 Jovo check-point, we've already established you have no independent
16 recollection of how you were invited to such a meeting. I'm going to ask
17 you how many VRS soldiers met you in no-man's land when you said you
18 were -- testified earlier that you were briefly kidnapped.
19 A. Perhaps about four men, two to four.
20 Q. How did you arrive at the beginning of the no-man's land that you
21 are telling us you had to cross to get to check-point Jovo?
22 A. I drove there in the military Mercedes, and at OP-Papa, our
23 observation post, I got out of the vehicle and walked from there.
24 Q. Were you by yourself, Colonel?
25 A. No. A colleague was with me.
1 Q. What's that colleague's name?
2 A. Melchers.
3 Q. You weren't really detained by these soldiers, were you?
4 A. I was taken away under the threat of a weapon.
5 Q. And where did these soldiers take you, Colonel?
6 A. To yellow bridge.
7 Q. That's check-point Jovo, correct?
8 A. Yes, that's correct.
9 Q. So would they have been some sort of escort? Is that your
11 A. Yes, an armed escort.
12 Q. It was for your protection, do you believe?
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour, I'm sorry --
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Let him finish. I think there is a very straight
15 way of dealing with it.
16 Were you disarmed, Colonel, or were you allowed to carry our
17 weapon with you throughout this entire operation?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was never disarmed in the entire
19 period. I was carrying a pistol, but I don't use it as an elo [as
21 JUDGE AGIUS: That basically explains what meaning or what
22 understanding we should have of being kidnapped, because that's -- any
23 way, I think we can go straight to --
24 MR. MEEK: Thank you.
25 Q. In your direct examination, Colonel, you were very vague about
1 what transpired during that first meeting in regards what you and Mr.
2 Beara purportedly spoke about. Could you clarify that, please?
3 A. I think that the purpose of the meeting was to obtain information
4 from the VRS about potential ABiH positions in the enclave and the
5 conversation was clearly focused on that.
6 Q. Do you remember specifically speaking to this individual who you
7 claim was Mr. Beara?
8 A. Yes. An interpreter was present as well, so I was able to speak
9 with him.
10 Q. Do you recall the name of this interpreter?
11 A. Yes, Petar.
12 Q. All right. What was it, then, that -- what was the subject more
13 specifically of this conversation you purportedly had at check-point Jovo
14 with Mr. Beara?
15 A. Yes. I believe I already indicated that in my previous answer.
16 Q. Yeah. Your indication, Colonel in your previous answer was, "I
17 think that the purpose of the meeting was to obtain information from the
18 VRS about potential ABiH positions in the enclave." So my question is:
19 You really don't know, do you? You just think, number 1, and number 2, I
20 just asked you to be more specific. If you have no independent
21 recollection today, just tell me and I'll move on.
22 A. The questions were very focused from Colonel Beara as to what I
23 knew about the ABiH troops in the enclave.
24 Q. So would it be a fair statement, he asked you that one question
25 and the meeting was over?
1 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment before you answer that question. It
2 would also mean that what we have as his answer in lines 22 to 24 on the
3 previous page is the exactly the opposite of what he meant or what he was
4 supposedly would have stated and I think that's again a problem of
5 interpretation. Because if you read those three lines, basically means
6 that the purpose of the meeting -- meeting originates from him and not
7 from the VRS or from Beara. And the purpose precisely was to obtain
8 information about potential ABiH position from the VRS themselves which I
9 don't think is exactly -- is -- reflects what the witness says. Or said.
10 MR. MEEK:
11 Q. Colonel, you did actually answer that it was the VRS wanting
12 information, but be that as it may, let me ask this question: Do you
13 recall today specifically any individuals within the ABiH army in the
14 enclave that Mr. Beara would have asked you about at that purported
16 A. He was interested in Naser Oric.
17 Q. How about the ABiH commander Zulfo? Do you recall that or not?
18 A. He probably did that as well.
19 Q. How did you get back to the base from that meeting? Did you have
20 a flashlight? Did the VRS soldiers take you back to your Mercedes Benz,
21 or do you recall?
22 A. I don't remember that any more. I did return to the base.
23 Q. Thank you. How long did the meeting take, if you recall?
24 A. Perhaps 15 minutes or 30 minutes, no longer.
25 Q. Earlier on in your testimony in regards to reports, I think you
1 indicated that you kept a personal diary. Did I hear you correctly,
3 A. Well, I kept notes of various meetings, but it wasn't a real diary
4 that I kept.
5 Q. Do you have any of those notes today?
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. What's the objection, Mr. Nicholls?
7 MR. NICHOLLS: Asked and answered.
8 MR. MEEK:
9 Q. Well, let me ask you another question. Where are those notes,
11 A. My notes, I don't have any notes at home. All I have are a few
12 statements, most of them aren't at home either. And I threw most of them
13 out, or it didn't arrive from the enclave back at my home.
14 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Your last answer is going to draw another
15 question. You say, "I threw most of them out or it didn't arrive." Are
16 you telling me, sir, that you have some of the notes but not all of them?
17 Or not most of them?
18 A. I don't have any notes.
19 Q. Now, very briefly, earlier on this morning you testified that you
20 were made aware of the ABiH soldiers leaving the compound during the
21 nights and raiding nearby Serbian villages. My question, sir, is: Didn't
22 the United Nations have other soldiers outside the enclave and did you
23 ever make any inquiries to them to verify that, in fact, this was
25 A. I wasn't personally involved in that.
1 Q. Can you tell me who at DutchBat III would have been involved in
2 that, sir?
3 A. Perhaps Colonel Karremans himself.
4 Q. And speaking of Colonel Karremans, I believe you and Colonel
5 Karremans drove together to the Hotel Fontana on the 11th of July and
6 drove back from that first meeting, didn't you?
7 A. I attended the meeting with him. But whether we drove there
8 together, I don't remember that.
9 Q. Just so the record is clear, sir, you never met or saw Mr. Beara
10 in July of 1995, did you?
11 A. I didn't consciously meet him. I don't remember that.
12 Q. You never saw him at the Hotel Fontana during any of those
13 meetings where Mladic was present, did you?
14 A. I don't remember seeing him.
15 Q. You never saw him anywhere in Bratunac, did you?
16 A. Are we talking about July now?
17 Q. Yes, sir.
18 A. No. Then I didn't see him.
19 Q. You never saw him anywhere in Srebrenica, did you, sir? July
21 A. No, I didn't see him.
22 Q. You never saw Mr. Beara anywhere in Potocari, did you, sir, in
23 July of 1995?
24 A. No. I didn't see him anywhere in July 1995 so we could go on for
25 a while.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: In other words, he's telling you, you could continue
2 mentioning about another two dozen places and his answer is going to
3 always be the same, in July I never saw him anywhere. Was that --
4 MR. MEEK: I just wanted to clarify with this witness that he
5 never saw Mr. Beara again after the Hotel Fontana meeting.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Nicholls?
7 MR. NICHOLLS: That was my objection that he said, I didn't see
8 him in July 1995, so he could have run through a hundred --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, yes. That's --
10 MR. MEEK:
11 Q. And Mr. Ostojic wants me to ask this question which I'm sure will
12 draw an objection: You never saw Mr. Beara, did you, when you took the
13 column of refugees out on the 12th of July? Did you?
14 A. I didn't see him. I don't remember that.
15 Q. And, sir, my only last -- my last question is: In all of your
16 testimony you've stated that your memory has faded, it's worse than now it
17 was in 1995, it was worse in 1998 than it was in 1995. Can you explain to
18 me and explain to this Trial Chamber how it is that your memory seems to
19 get better whether it comes to Mr. Beara when it seems to be worse when it
20 comes to everybody else and every other situation?
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls?
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Objection. One, it's a complete
23 mischaracterisation of what he said. He never testified that his memory
24 about Beara was worse in 1998 than it was in 1995. And second, this --
25 objection is argumentative, how do you explain that your memory is getting
1 better now?
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Colonel, we have full trust in your ability to
4 answer this question. Go ahead and answer the question, please.
5 Whichever way you like.
6 It's being suggested to you, I will repeat the question. It's
7 being suggested to you that on the basis -- apart or in spite of the fact
8 that you said that as time goes by your memory fades, and it's worse now
9 than it was in 1995, if you want to comment on that, can you explain to
10 the Trial Chamber how it is, according to Mr. Meek, that your memory seems
11 to get better when you're dealing with questions relating to Mr. Beara and
12 while it seems to get worse, that's your memory, when you're dealing with
13 questions touching on everyone else and every other situation. So it's
14 divided into various parts and small sections. I trust you can answer the
15 question. If you need assistance from the Trial Chamber, we'll give you
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During the different preliminary
18 investigations by the Prosecutor, and the various testimony hearings by
19 the Tribunal and other institutions, I was obviously asked repeatedly
20 about the incidents and what I saw. If you consider -- if you look at the
21 first statement that was quickly -- which was made soon afterwards and
22 which I read during the break, that was a very brief, focused
23 investigation in which several individuals did not come up. Later on,
24 various investigations were conducted relatively quickly. Some were into
25 depth. Others went into greater depth about certain incidents in which
1 links were established. This obviously relates to sorting out the roles
2 of individuals in the Srebrenica investigation, and that brings up people
3 on photographs and happenings, and the questions become more in depth, and
4 I'm firmly convinced that this holds true for Colonel Beara as well, that
5 I met him and that it has always stuck in my memory is clear to me
6 personally. It's just that at the moment it was asked and elaborated on,
7 that was a bit later. And personally, I was not forced to look at
8 something and say that this is him. That wasn't the case.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think you are answering the question,
10 Colonel. Let me help you a little bit and we try to conclude the
11 cross-examination here, unless Mr. Meek has got more questions. It's
12 being put to you that you remember much more about Colonel Beara than
13 about anyone else. Do you accept that proposition?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I don't accept that.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: It's also being put to you that while you are
16 forgetful about several events and about several people, you're not
17 forgetful at all about Mr. Beara or Colonel Beara. Do you accept that
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: What do you mean by "yes"?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I remember meeting him twice and
22 those incidents were described.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: I think it's a question of interpretation again.
24 The proposition is that you remember more about Mr. Beara than about
25 anything else, about other people and other circumstances where you tend
1 to forget. This is what is being put to you. Do you accept that?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. That's not an acceptable
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. It's back to you, Mr. Meek, if you wants
5 could conclude.
6 MR. MEEK: I do, Judge. Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. Colonel Boering, in your long answer up here, you mentioned
8 documents you looked at on the break, correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And the documents you looked at on the break were given prior to
11 1998 but after July of 1995, correct?
12 A. These are statements of September, October 1995.
13 Q. Then in September 1995, and you gave a statement to the Office of
14 the Prosecutor, we've talked about it this morning, you did not take that
15 statement back with you in the break room, did you?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Okay.
18 A. It was taken from me.
19 Q. Thank you. Now, you looked at that this morning and I named off
20 probably four to five contacts you made in the ABiH army and in the VRS
21 army, didn't I, sir?
22 A. Correct.
23 Q. And none of those contacts, none of those important or people you
24 thought were important were Mr. Beara, were they?
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't answer that question, Colonel. You've put
1 this question several times already. He's given you a straight answer
2 already. Mr. Meek, please, your next question, which should not be a
3 repetition of what you have asked already.
4 MR. MEEK:
5 Q. You've testified on direct examination that at this purported
6 first meeting, you were ambushed, you were kidnapped, you were taken
7 hostage. Did you report that to anybody?
8 A. Yes. I told Mr. Karremans.
9 Q. So perhaps Colonel Karremans would have some independent
10 recollection or a report on that. Is that what your testimony is, sir?
11 If you know.
12 A. Well, you'd have to ask him.
13 Q. Thank you. And in your answer to Judge Agius's question earlier,
14 you said that, "I met him," being Colonel Beara and it's always stuck in
15 my memory, it's clear to me personally. Then you said, "it's just that at
16 the moment it was asked and elaborated on, that was a bit later." Do you
17 recall that?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Now, my question to you, Colonel, is: That part of your answer
20 relates to the moment that the OTP investigators asked you about Mr. Beara
21 and elaborated on Mr. Beara, and that's when you remembered everything,
22 isn't that true?
23 MR. NICHOLLS: One moment.
24 [Trial Chamber confers]
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. What's your objection, Mr. Nicholls?
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Just that this ground has been gone over. He's
2 been asked and answered, and Mr. Meek has no basis for putting that as a
3 fact whatsoever.
4 [Trial Chamber confers]
5 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. We are divided on this but I'll repeat
6 the question to you and please answer it and that will be the last time we
7 are touching on this. The question Mr. Meek asked you, Colonel, is the
8 following: "Referring to a previous deposition on your part, he said that
9 part of your answer relates to the moment that the OTP investigators asked
10 you about Mr. Beara and elaborated on Mr. Beara and that's when you
11 remembered everything; isn't that true?"
12 What's your answer? In other words, it's being put to you that
13 your memory of Mr. Beara and your meetings with him came back to you when
14 you were specifically asked about Mr. Beara. But what -- where you would
15 answer -- you need to answer that question and also, of course -- answer
16 that question, first.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. It was not mentioned after the
18 Prosecutor came up with it first.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, I think this is precisely why we have to stop
20 on this. The witness has already answered this question in -- several
21 times in whichever form it was put to you.
22 He's making it very clear to you, Mr. Meek, that the mentioning of
23 Mr. Beara originated from him and not from the Prosecutor. He's answered
24 that question several times and I think you've tried again and --
25 MR. MEEK: All right. Then I will only ask one other question.
1 Q. And that wasn't until 1998, three years after the incident,
3 JUDGE AGIUS: A question you've asked and he's answered it already
5 So you don't need to answer it, Colonel.
6 MR. MEEK: No further questions, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Meek. Now, what's the problem,
8 Mr. Nicholls?
9 MR. NICHOLLS: No problem, I was just wondering if we could get an
10 estimate of how much time remains. We do have a witness available today.
11 I take it we are not probably going to reach him but --
12 JUDGE AGIUS: But I don't see why we should have had a witness --
13 another witness available today when I made it clear last time based on
14 the estimates that I had that Colonel will be testifying the entire day of
15 today and probably, being a conservative estimate, the entire day of
16 tomorrow or most of it. In fact I told him so on Friday before he left.
17 Yes, Madam Nikolic, who is representing Drago Nikolic here will be
18 cross-examining you. You had estimated 15 minutes.
19 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, good morning.
20 Cross-examination by Ms. Nikolic:
21 Q. Good morning, Colonel Boering.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Before you proceed, Mr. Lazarevic, I noticed you've
23 taken on board new company unannounced. What's that about?
24 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes, I apologise for this, Your Honour. Perhaps I
25 should have announced Mr. Dragomir Djukic's presence here. This is our
1 case manager instead of Mr. Tatjana Cmeric, who will be absent during this
2 week, and he's not wearing a robe because he's not a lawyer and that's the
3 reason why he's not wearing a robe.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you for that information.
5 Madam Nikolic?
6 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. Colonel Boering, on your direct and on your cross-examination, you
8 were shown a document. That's why I would like the witness to be shown a
9 65 ter document number 0531. This is a report, a fax, that your
10 commander, Karremans, sent on the 12th of July to the commanders in
11 Zagreb, Sarajevo, Tuzla, and the Hague. In that he reported on the
12 meeting with Mladic on the 17th of July -- on the 11th of July. Can we
13 please turn to page 2?
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Just a moment, because my system encountered a
15 problem and I have lost everything.
16 So go ahead. Go ahead. I will recover everything myself.
17 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 Q. Under item 6, which you discussed with Mr. Nicholls, under A and
19 B, you provided your opinion of the events. I'm going to read to you what
20 your force commander under C wrote down. "To find suitable
21 representatives among the civilians because the official authorities are
22 for certain reasons not available."
23 Under D: "To find representatives among the military authorities
24 because they are trying to fight for a corridor to the Tuzla area and will
25 not show up any way because of purely personal reasons. I cannot force
1 ABiH troops to hand over their weapons."
2 In your opinion, is this correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Thank you. As I was reading all your statements and your
5 testimonies, at the beginning, owing to the intervention of the
6 Presiding Judge, will you agree with me that all the time when you
7 mentioned the name Nikolic you meant Momir Nikolic, the liaison officer
8 with the DutchBat from the Bratunac Brigade?
9 A. Yes, that's correct.
10 Q. You met with him almost every other week. You had a number of
11 contacts. You exchanged information. Did you trust Major Momir Nikolic?
12 A. I can point out one event, one -- yeah, event, to indicate how far
13 trust can go. At a certain point I had to come to Yellow Bridge. A
14 number of VRS soldiers saw me coming, and I issued a message, I was given
15 a message and I needed to take some time to look through it, and I was
16 told to leave in one or two minutes or they would have to shoot me. And I
17 had the distinct impression that that was going to happen. So I assumed
18 it was a man, a man word [as interpreted] Mr. Nikolic.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Two things. Number 1, line 5 of page 50, I
20 distinctly heard the witness saying that he issued a message. Number of
21 VRS soldiers saw me coming and I issued a message. Was it you who issued
22 a message?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. And initially in the transcript, I saw the I
25 appearing and then it disappeared. The other thing is the last three
1 lines, I don't understand at least. They are confusing. So it says, "I
2 issued a message I was given a message and I need to take some time to
3 look through it and I was told to leave in one or two minutes or they
4 would have to shoot me and I had the distinct impression that that was
5 going to happen. So I assumed it was a man, a man, Mr. Nikolic."
6 It's this last part. So I assumed it was a man, a man,
7 Mr. Nikolic, that I would like you to explain because as it is in the
8 transcript, it is not clear enough. Thank you, Colonel.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I tried to describe, you know, that
10 if he pointed out something, if he indicated something, if he did
11 something, you could assume that that was what he meant.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I think I have to take you back to the
13 message then. You were given a message, you said. Is that correct?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Was it in writing.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] A letter, I think, yes.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: And was it a signed letter.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Who was the signatory? Who had signed it? Whose
20 signature --
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think Colonel Karremans.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: That is a letter that were you carrying with you
23 which you handed to the VRS soldiers.
24 THE WITNESS: Yeah.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: And did the VRS soldiers communicate any message to
1 you in writing?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They gave me the message that this
3 has been received, this message, and we will not be contacting you.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: And there message that they gave you, not the one
5 that you gave them, the one that they gave you, was it a written message?
6 And if it was, was it signed? And by whom?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the latter, I don't remember.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: But you seem to me to put the blame for all this
9 that happened on that particular occasion on Momir Nikolic. Why do you do
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. The question was whether I
12 trusted Major Nikolic. And my answer is yes, I trust him. He does what
13 he says. So it's not that he's untrustworthy. This was just an example,
14 and I assumed he's very trustworthy, so trustworthy that I've got to be
15 careful and I've got to get away.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: In other words, you're telling us that if the
17 message that you got back was, go back because we'll shoot you, that they
18 would be true to their words, including Momir Nikolic and indeed if you
19 tried not to go back you would indeed be shot? Is that what you meant to
20 convey to us?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I was threatened.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I think it's clear enough.
23 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] No further questions, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you, Madam Nikolic. Mr. Lazarevic?
25 Or yes? You're now going to be cross-examined on behalf of
1 Mr. Borovcanin.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Stojanovic. How long do you think
4 you'll be cross-examining this witness?
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [No interpretation].
6 JUDGE AGIUS: I haven't received interpretation.
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] We believe that we will do our
8 cross-examination within the scope of one hour. It will take us an hour,
9 as we planned.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Go ahead.
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Cross-examination by Mr. Stojanovic:
13 Q. Colonel, based on your testimony so far, I understand that from
14 January 1995, until you left the enclave, you worked as a liaison officer;
15 is that correct?
16 A. [No interpretation].
17 Q. During that period of time --
18 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. I haven't heard an answer from the
19 witness and I don't want to hear it because he's been asked this question
20 and answered it several times. So let's move to the basics of your
21 cross-examination, Mr. Stojanovic, please.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. During this period of time you met up with the representatives of
24 the VRS and with the representatives of the civilian and military
25 authorities in the enclave of Srebrenica; is that correct?
1 A. That's correct.
2 Q. You had a number of contacts with Ramiz Becirevic, who represented
3 BiH army and Momir Nikolic who represented the army of Republika Srpska;
4 is that correct?
5 A. Momir Nikolic represented the Bratunac Brigade at first, and
6 reports regularly we were -- we were regularly able to send messages to
7 other brigades through him.
8 Q. I also understand that you met Nesib Mandzic on several occasions
9 before you proposed his name as the representative of refugees from
10 Potocari and this happened at your meeting with General Mladic; is that
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Could you please help us and comment upon a video clip.
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] For identification, Your Honours,
15 the number is ERN number is V 0004458. This is Exhibit P01557, and this
16 is a video clip starting from 7.42 to 9.10 seconds. Can we please be
17 shown this video clip?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, we still don't have it.
19 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
20 JUDGE AGIUS: We seem to have a technical problem. If the
21 technicians could help us. I apologise to you, Mr. Stojanovic. I can't
22 help you beyond apologising. Yes, Mr. Nicholls?
23 MR. NICHOLLS: We may be able to play it if, perhaps, I don't know
24 if counsel wants to walk around, make sure we are on exactly the same page
25 of the clip. I think we are. Or we can play it ourselves. I think we've
1 got the numbers right.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Can we do that, Mr. Stojanovic?
3 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, please.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So if I got Mr. Stojanovic correct
5 before, he wants to shows us from 7.42 to 9.10. So that's just under two
6 minutes of --
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Microphone not activated].
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Microphone, Mr. Stojanovic.
9 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I believe that
10 we can overcome this obstacle and I will kindly ask Ms. Janet to help us
11 with this.
12 Q. Colonel, this is the event --
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's see it first and then you explain to him.
14 [Videotape played]
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Stop.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Now your question and explain to the witness
17 whatever you like.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation].
19 Q. Colonel, can you recognise the man on this still?
20 JUDGE AGIUS: I suppose you mean the man wearing a light blue
21 jacket with his hands extended towards -- outward, no?
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Precisely so, Your Honour.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't recognise him. This is the
24 first time I'm seeing this recording.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: We are at still 7.48.5. Yes. Exactly.
1 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we please continue playing
2 the video and then I will ask you again to stop at one point.
3 [Videotape played]
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: Stop.
5 Q. [Interpretation] Colonel, do you recognise the person in the
6 middle of this still wearing a military uniform sporting a mustache and
7 maybe a beard as well?
8 A. Yes. That's Ramiz Becerovic, if I'm right.
9 Q. Thank you. Let's try and see if you can help us and tell us
10 whether the first person on the first still could have been Nesib Mandzic
11 or not.
12 A. I don't recognise him on that recording.
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, can you just bear
14 with me? I would like to advise the Trial Chamber that we stopped the
15 video clip at 8.39 minutes and that the witness recognised Ramiz Becerovic
16 on that still.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: 8.39.9.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation].
19 Q. I understand that you had several meetings with Mr. Mandzic and
20 could you please tell us what you discussed during those meetings, what
21 the topic of your conversations was.
22 A. They were exclusively about school-related matters. We are
23 talking about the meetings prior to his selection as representative of the
24 population. Up to that point, my only dealings with him were when I
25 visited his school and we didn't talk about anything else.
1 Q. Why did you personally think that Mr. Mandzic would be a good
2 representative, and why did you put his name forward at this meeting in
3 the hotel?
4 JUDGE AGIUS: We need to know before that whether it was he who
5 put the name of Mr. Mandzic or whether it was Mr. Karremans. Or he and
6 Mr. Karremans together.
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Very well, Your Honour.
8 Q. Colonel, were you the one who proposed Mr. Mandzic as the
9 representative at the meeting in the Fontana Hotel?
10 A. Yes. That was me.
11 Q. My next question is relative to the one that I asked you just a
12 minute ago. Why did you decide to do that?
13 A. As far as I can remember, when I drove back from Srebrenica to
14 Potocari, we, the Sergeant-Major Rave and I, opened some gates so that the
15 refugees would have some room, and I think in the corner of my eye I
16 noticed Nesib Mandzic. That's how it sticks in my memory and that's how I
17 thought, gee, we need somebody, I saw somebody, can we find him? It's in
18 my memory about like that.
19 Q. Can you remember whether Mr. Mandzic had any previous political
21 A. I didn't notice that; not in his actions and not in the course of
22 the conversations I had with him.
23 Q. Did you know that in that period of April, May, and June of 1995,
24 that there were some political conflicts within the enclave of
1 A. Yes. I certainly know that because there were.
2 Q. Were there people in power as well as their opposition?
3 A. Opposition existed there, and there was a struggle between the
4 opposition and the potentates. I know about that.
5 Q. Thank you. Perhaps you can assist us in the following: Can you
6 tell us who do you have in mind when you say people in power?
7 A. What comes to mind? I don't remember any names, but what comes to
8 mind is that one of the persons in the opposition had formed an opposition
9 party and requested DutchBat for protection because they felt threatened.
10 I remember discussing that with Sergeant-Major Rave, that we did not
11 provide such protection, and that we regarded this as an internal issue
12 within the enclave. I remember that the next day, at least one of those
13 opposition members was seriously injured and the leadership of the enclave
14 in our weekly meeting urged us not to seek any contacts without their
15 involvement. That's what I remember.
16 Q. Who do you believe were the potentates in the enclave, the
18 A. The potentates in the enclave, there was one part, it was Zulfo in
19 the west, at the rear it was Tursunovic or something like that, and in the
20 rest of the area it was Naser Oric with a group, and he was in charge of
21 that group.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Talking of April, May, and June of 1995. It's my
23 understanding from what I have heard in this case that Naser Oric was
24 air-lifted to Tuzla in April. So what about the rest of April, May, and
25 June of 1995? He wasn't there supposedly.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Then he wasn't there, and then we
2 would deal with the person you would see in the centre of that image, but
3 there certainly was contact with Naser Oric. My impression was those were
4 the instructions. So you don't have to be in charge to be present [as
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Stojanovic?
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Q. Colonel, sir, we heard the name of Momir Nikolic mentioned often.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, thank you. Mr. Nicholls?
10 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry I just think there might be an error in the
11 transcript. I want to make sure. I think it says you don't have to be in
12 charge to be present. I think it must be the other way around.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: That's how I take it. I think that we do have a
14 slight problem of interpretation this morning so basically I agree with
16 Yes, Mr. Stojanovic.
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation].
18 Q. Colonel, sir, what position did Mr. Momir Nikolic have at that
19 time within the Bratunac Brigade, provided you know?
20 A. He was our liaison. His actual role within the brigade was
21 unclear, and he liked to keep it that way.
22 Q. Did he have any military rank?
23 A. Yes. We addressed him as Major Nikolic. That's how he was
25 Q. Did he also have the ranks on his shoulder?
1 A. No. Generally, the VRS did not have that.
2 Q. Did Mr. Momir Nikolic ever tell you that he held the rank of
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Are you contesting Momir Nikolic's rank, Mr.
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Perhaps this
7 is a good opportunity for me to try and prove at a later stage that indeed
8 he did not have that rank. I'm trying to gain some information through
9 this witness as regards that.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Then go ahead, because this could be -- this could
11 be the only reason I could think of why you are putting these questions.
12 So the question, Colonel, the question to you is, did Mr. Nikolic
13 ever tell you that he held the rank of major?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think I remember that he didn't
15 want to address -- he didn't want to be addressed by his rank or his
16 position. There was even an incident where he was addressed as commander
17 of the Bratunac Brigade and he became so angry that he refused to deal
18 with us for a while, so he [as interpreted] tried not to bring up his rank
19 or his position.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Who introduced him to you as Major Nikolic?
22 A. I believe that was General Zivanovic in early January. And also
23 via my predecessors of DutchBat II, who preceded me and gave us a list of
24 the people they were in touch with and their names and ranks. So based on
25 that, it was Major Nikolic.
1 Q. Thank you. During your examination-in-chief, you identified
2 someone by the name of Colonel Jankovic as well. Can you assist us in
3 telling us what his role was during those meetings at Hotel Fontana? How
4 did you see him?
5 A. His role was first of all to provide Mladic with direct
6 assistance. That was why at one of the meetings he was seated directly
7 next to him and occasionally he consulted with him. At the start of the
8 first meeting, he was also Mladic's spokes person to Karremans, to convey
9 messages correctly, and later on, you see in the video that Petar takes
10 over that role. At the third video, I believe that Colonel Jankovic is
11 seated in the background across from General Mladic taking notes. Later
12 on, I wasn't involved, Colonel Jankovic was assigned to wrap matters up on
13 site on behalf of General Mladic but I learned that through indirect
14 observation, as a type of liaison from General Mladic to DutchBat.
15 Q. At those three meetings, did he raise any points? Did he engage
16 in discussions?
17 A. I don't remember that. More -- his role was more to observe and
18 to take notes.
19 Q. I understand that from hearsay or from other sources, you
20 concluded that he were to wrap up things on the spot on behalf of
21 General Mladic. Would you agree with me if I said that he was a sort of
22 an executive who was tasked with carrying out Mladic's plans? Would that
23 be a fair statement?
24 A. I would be more inclined to say that he was the liaison toward
25 DutchBat, to arrange things with DutchBat. So limited execution of
1 General Mladic's plans, focused primarily on DutchBat. But that's not
2 based on my personal observations. This is based on hindsight and
4 Q. When you say, "To carry out or implement Mladic's plans," what
5 plans exactly do you have in mind?
6 A. I mean the transport of refugees.
7 Q. When did you hear for the first time of the separation of the
8 able-bodied men from the rest?
9 A. That could be during the first or the second meeting with
10 General Mladic. At any rate, I certainly heard about it by the third
12 Q. Colonel, I would kindly ask to you comment on a document and I
13 would kindly ask the registrar to help us. This is our Exhibit 4 D15. We
14 received this with the general collection forwarded via the EDS. The ERN
15 number is 4 D000176 through 4 D000189. Unfortunately, Your Honours, up
16 until this moment we haven't received the translation and I just wanted to
17 read out the title and what follows is a list of names and hence I do not
18 expect any problems.
19 Colonel, sir, the title reads, "The list of war criminals known to
20 the command of the 1st Light Infantry Bratunac Brigade who had committed
21 war crimes in the areas of municipalities of Bratunac, Srebrenica, Milici,
22 Vlasenica, and Skelani, and for whom there are indications that they are
23 in Srebrenica." What follows is the various categories within the
24 documents. First we have organisers and officials, then the command, and
25 immediate perpetrators. The total number of people on the list is 387,
1 and the date is the 12th of July 1995. My question relating to this
2 document is the following: Do you know anything about this document? Is
3 anything familiar?
4 A. As far as I can remember, this is the first time I'm seeing this
6 Q. Did Mr. Momir Nikolic at any point mention this document to you in
7 any way?
8 A. I can't remember that, but I do remember that there were
9 criminals, but as to whether he issued a list, I don't remember that.
10 Q. Since you mentioned there were criminals, what did that entail?
11 A. By criminals, I mean the way Mr. Nikolic said it, war criminals.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: So let's get this clear because again I need to
13 clarify this. What we have in the transcript is, "I do remember that
14 there were criminals." What you meant to say, and correct me if I'm
15 wrong, is that although you never saw such a list, Mr. Momir Nikolic did
16 mention to you the existence of war criminals. Is that what you meant to
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's correct.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: In other words, you didn't mean to tell us that you
20 had personal knowledge of the existence of war criminals amongst the
21 Bosnian Muslims?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct. There were reports
23 of possible misconduct on the part of ABiH troops in the enclave, that
24 might have perpetrated war crimes.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. I think that's clear enough.
1 Mr. Stojanovic.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
3 Q. Colonel, sir, based on what you said today, and having in mind
4 your statement given to the OTP on the 10th of February 1998, and for
5 identification purposes this is at page 8, paragraph 2, where you mention
6 the meeting of the 12th of July 1995 and the evacuation of the
7 population. There you mention a meeting where Mladic spoke, and this was
8 a meeting with General Smith, and you stated there as well that Mr. --
9 that Lieutenant Colonel Karremans was not to worry about that. Do you
10 remember that part of your statement?
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, if he's going to be asked questions on this
12 event, then he needs to see the statement. So let's make it available to
13 him, please, and we need to see it too.
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I would kindly ask the registrar
15 for assistance. This is a Defence Exhibit, the number being 4 D25, page
16 8, in the English, the second paragraph. Page 9 of the English, second
18 Q. Colonel, I believe you will be able to see that part of your
19 statement on the screen before you, page 9, paragraph 2. Do you remember
21 A. You mean the paragraph with outlined, et cetera, Mladic outlined,
22 et cetera?
23 Q. Yes, precisely. The fourth line in particular is the portion that
24 I mentioned.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah, but this does not reflect what we had in the
1 transcript, again once more, in page 63, lines 16, 17, to 21, was --
2 according to the transcript, it was put to the witness as follows: He's
3 being referred to this particular paragraph except that it is on page 8,
4 according to the transcript and now we see that it is page 9, and he's
5 told, where you mentioned the meeting of the 12th of July 1995 and the
6 evacuation of the population, there you mention a meeting where Mladic
7 spoke and this was a meeting with General Smith and you stated there as
8 well that, something missing, that Lieutenant-Colonel Karremans was not to
9 worry about that. It's exactly the opposite of what the relevant part of
10 his statement describes, relevant part of the statement describes that
11 first, Karremans objected to this but Mladic ignored his objection, and
12 then Mladic retorted that General -- that he had met General Smith and
13 Karremans should not bother about it.
14 So your question now. I repeated all this to make the things
15 clearer, not to anticipate your question, Mr. Stojanovic.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour, for your
18 Q. Colonel, my question is the following: Who is General Smith?
19 A. General Smith was the superior -- the level above us. He was not
20 in Tuzla. I believe he was in Sarajevo. At any rate, he was the higher
21 level. He could have been in Zagreb.
22 Q. Is it correct that on that occasion, General Mladic mentioned to
23 Lieutenant Colonel Karremans that he had met with General Smith and that
24 Lieutenant Colonel Karremans shouldn't worry about the issues raised?
25 JUDGE AGIUS: That's what the statement says. So your question
1 should be whether he confirms what is contained in the second paragraph,
2 not the other way around or the way you put it.
3 Colonel, from your own knowledge, do you confirm the contents of
4 the second paragraph in this statement on page 9 or not?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, at this time, that's not in my
6 memory, but if I made such a statement at the time, then I assume that
7 that was indeed the case.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Colonel.
9 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I
10 believe this would be a convenient moment nor our next break.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Perfect. Thank you, Mr. Stojanovic and
12 Mr. Nicholls. We'll have a 25-minute break starting from now. I see you
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry, I stood before I rose -- it was the break.
15 I just wanted to be clear for the transcript, the question was about
16 issues raised but it's clear from the statement that it wasn't about
17 issues, plural, but that Karremans objected to the separation of men for
18 interrogation and that's what General Mladic said he should not worry
19 about, not a range of issues.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: The witness was referred only to the second
21 paragraph on page 9, and the question that we have here, is it correct
22 that on that occasion, General Mladic mentioned to Lieutenant Colonel
23 Karremans that he had met with General Smith and that Lieutenant Colonel
24 Karremans shouldn't worry about the issues raised. Whichever the issues
25 were. This is the whole point that is put to the witness and in paragraph
1 2 we have precisely that. Mladic outlined evacuation plan for the
2 refugees, Mladic agreed, et cetera, the men would be separated further,
3 Karremans objected to this, but Mladic ignored him, Mladic said that he
4 had met General Smith and said Karremans should not bother about it.
5 The gist of the question put by Mr. Stojanovic is in relation to
6 the fourth and fifth line and he actually repeated that he was referring
7 to the fourth and fifth line. Correct me if I'm wrong, Mr. Stojanovic.
8 But I don't think I am wrong. You were not discussing the issues, at
9 least for the time being.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Let's have a 25-minute break.
12 --- Recess taken at 12.32 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 1.00 p.m.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls?
15 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour, I just wanted to inform the Court, I
16 apologise, I won't be able to be here tomorrow. So Mr. McCloskey will
17 handle any redirect, if there is any. I'm very sorry about that. It's
18 something that has been scheduled for a long time and originally
19 anticipated it would work with this witness.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Nicholls, for informing us.
21 Yes, Mr. Stojanovic.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Colonel, sir, after the third meeting at the Fontana on the 12th
24 of July, you went to Potocari and after a short meeting with
25 Lieutenant-Colonel Karremans and Major Franken, you returned to Bratunac
1 again; is that correct?
2 A. Yes, that's correct.
3 Q. And there you met with Mr. Momir Nikolic?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And he told you to go back to Potocari because the evacuation was
6 just about to start; is that correct?
7 A. Or that it had started already.
8 Q. The meeting with Momir Nikolic, was that a spontaneous meeting or
9 did you ask to see Mr. Nikolic again?
10 A. This was a spontaneous meeting. I drove there myself, without
11 having an appointment.
12 Q. However, at that moment, Mr. Momir Nikolic knew that the
13 evacuation was just about to start or that it had just started; is that
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Can you please tell us how you saw the role of Mr. Momir Nikolic
17 in the evacuation and the separation of able-bodied men from the rest of
18 the group?
19 A. I myself did not see him being present at Potocari, Mr. Nikolic,
20 nor did I see him in the separation of the men. So I didn't actually see
21 him being involved.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would like to ask
23 to be shown Exhibit number 4 D16. This is a statement on the facts and
24 the acceptance of guilt that Mr. Momir Nikolic provided. The ERN number
25 of this document in the English version is 4 D000190 to 4 D000198. I
1 would like to draw your attention to item 5 of this statement on facts and
2 the acceptance of guilt provided by Momir Nikolic. Can you please focus
3 on item 5? This is actually Momir Nikolic's guilty plea statement.
4 It says here, after speaking to Lieutenant-Colonel Popovic and
5 Kosovic [as interpreted], Colonel Jankovic left the Hotel Fontana and told
6 me to coordinate the transportation of all the women and children and the
7 separation of the able-bodied Muslim men.
8 Q. Do you see that, Colonel?
9 A. I see it.
10 Q. Since we are not military personnel, could you please tell us, in
11 your doctrine, what is understood by the term "coordination"? And I'm
12 talking about the military terminology.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, sir, Mr. Zivanovic?
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Excuse me, Your Honour, I have not
15 such text in my --
16 JUDGE AGIUS: On one screen I have the English text and the
17 corresponding text, translation into B/C/S. So I suppose if you press on
18 e-court, the e-court button, you should have it. If you don't, let me
19 know. E-court button. E-court.
20 Do the rest have it? Yeah, I see you, Mr. Lazarevic, saying, for
21 example that he can see it. Perhaps someone can help Mr. Zivanovic and we
22 can proceed.
23 MR. LAZAREVIC: Perhaps Mr. Zivanovic should look at his monitor
24 in between himself and Ms. Condon.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. Thank you. Thank you,
1 Mr. Lazarevic. Let's proceed.
2 Yes. I apologise to you, Mr. Stojanovic.
3 So, Colonel, you were asked to explain to us the military
4 significance of the term "to coordinate," "coordination," I take it in
5 relation to an operation.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you're responsible for
7 coordination, you will bring together the different parties and you will
8 try to fine-tune the parties' interests so that the things happen as
9 correctly as possible, as quickly as possible, and from your superior you
10 can be given a coordinating authority so that you can act on behalf of a
11 superior in rank. So in this case, I would think it's some sort of
12 coordinator, as he himself indicates, for transport and separation, and
13 that he received the authority from Colonel Jankovic.
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation].
15 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Just one more thing. This coordination, does
16 it also imply the possibility of command over the units that are supposed
17 to be coordinated amongst themselves, in keeping with the instructions
18 that he received?
19 A. No, I wouldn't go that far.
20 Q. Could you please go to item 6 of this statement, the last sentence
21 thereof. In English, it is on page 3.
22 Here, Mr. Momir Nikolic continues, and speaks about the facts and
23 the acceptance of guilt and he says that in coordination with these units,
24 that he mentioned previously, he coordinated and oversaw the
25 transportation of the women and children to Kladanj and the separation and
1 detention of the able-bodied Muslim men.
2 Colonel, sir, do you still believe that the term "coordination"
3 implies something that can be carried out without giving any orders or
4 conveying any orders to the units which are being coordinated?
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls?
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Just that's not exactly what the witness's answer
7 was before so --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. I was toying with the idea of intervening
9 myself because previously, he -- what the witness said, that he wouldn't
10 go that far in agreeing with you because your question said, does it also
11 imply the possibility of command over the units? So I take his answer
12 meaning overall command. And he's saying it wouldn't go that far. But I
13 didn't understand his answer to mean that it would exclude even the
14 slightest measure of command. So perhaps you can direct him to that.
15 Perhaps he can explain his previous answer. Because that's how I
17 Colonel, does your definition or understanding of "coordination"
18 as previously conveyed to us means that you are excluding completely the
19 possibility of even the slightest measure of command in the course of
20 coordinating the operation or giving orders, in other words?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I think that's his answer, Mr. Stojanovic, and
23 that's precisely how I understood it in the first place.
24 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. That was
25 my understanding too, and I don't believe we need to dwell on this any
1 further. This answer should suffice.
2 Q. Colonel, let us continue with the 12th of July. At around 1.30
3 p.m., after you had that contact with Mr. Nikolic, you returned again to
4 Potocari. Do you remember that?
5 A. Yes, that's correct.
6 Q. You had to cross the yellow bridge and you had to pass by your
7 observation post, is that so?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. At the observation post, did you stop by and talk to some soldiers
10 of the DutchBat?
11 A. I don't remember, but it could be. Especially if you see some of
12 your own soldiers, you would stop and you would ask, well, what's going on
13 and how are you guys?
14 Q. Yes. It is only logical. Can you assist us and tell us, what
15 name did you use for that observation post?
16 A. Yes. OP-Papa, observation post papa.
17 Q. Therefore, at around 1.30 p.m. On the 12th of July, members of the
18 Dutch Battalion were still at that observation post; is that correct?
19 A. Well, I don't know any more. Could be.
20 Q. Thank you. Upon your arrival in Potocari, you saw a large number
21 of refugees boarding buses. I wanted to ask you this: The boarding of
22 the buses, did it take place in only one particular spot or were people
23 boarding several buses and trucks at the same time, as far as you could
25 A. People were entering various buses and vehicles at once.
1 Q. So there wasn't only a single place where the boarding was carried
2 out but, rather, it encompassed an area?
3 A. The buses were lined up one behind the other, and they were
4 stationary, and they were being loaded to capacity. So people were
5 entering the bus at various places, of course.
6 Q. Was it directly in front of the UN base, or maybe to the left- or
7 to the right-hand side of the UN base, looking towards the asphalt road?
8 A. I believe that the transportation was on the right-hand side of
9 the road, around and near the base.
10 Q. Among the group of refugees, did you see any members and fighters
11 of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, that you could recognise?
12 A. No, I did not see them.
13 Q. Colonel, could we please have your comment on a document? And I
14 would kindly ask the registrar's assistance. This is 4 D17. The ERN
15 being 4 D000208 through 4 D000209. Could we focus on the first page of
16 this report? Unfortunately, Your Honours, we still haven't received a
17 translation. But I will put only one sentence to the witness and I'm
18 about to read it outloud.
19 Colonel, sir, this is a document from the General Staff of the
20 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina dated the 12th of July 1995, as you can see in
21 the upper left corner, issued at 1325, which is precisely the time where
22 you were supposed to be in Potocari. Enver Hadzihasanovic, the Chief of
23 the General Staff, addressed this to the president of the Presidency of
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina via the 1st Corps command of the ABiH. It states the
25 following: "Last night, around 2300 hours, we had 15.000 to 20.000
1 refugees who were seated in the area of combat activity, together with 300
2 fighters of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina in the camp in Potocari."
3 Can you tell us approximately how many able-bodied men did you see
4 in Potocari on that occasion?
5 A. I walked through the group of refugees two or three times. It's
6 difficult to estimate, but I certainly saw a few tens.
7 Q. A little while ago you identified the Chief of Staff of the 28th
8 division as being Ramiz Becirevic. On the 11th of July, were you able to
9 see him anywhere in Potocari?
10 A. The last time I saw him was in Srebrenica at the Bravo Company
11 compound, when he requested safety for his wife, and I did not see him
12 after that.
13 Q. Am I right to conclude that this was on the 10th of July 1995?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Please assist us: A division comprises several brigades, is that
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. A brigade comprises several battalions, is that so?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And you were there as a Dutch Battalion, having the required
21 manning strength, is that so?
22 A. Well, at the end, we were at about 60 per cent manning strength.
23 Q. In order to conclude with this set of questions, I wanted to ask
24 you this: On the 12th, you joined the first refugee convoy to Kladanj; is
25 that correct?
1 A. Yes, that's correct.
2 Q. Who was at the front of the convoy? Who headed it?
3 A. I thought that I mentioned that a few times before, and identified
4 these persons on photographs a few times as well.
5 Q. You did, Colonel. I just wanted to create a foundation for my
6 following questions. In terms of numbers, what -- where was your vehicle
7 in the column?
8 A. Very soon after we started driving, I tried to catch up with the
9 column. I believe I was the second or the third vehicle. No buses were
10 right in front of me. There was one passenger car with the individual
11 concerned and perhaps another military vehicle but I don't remember that
12 any more.
13 Q. Did you ask for your superior's permission to leave with that
14 convoy or did you do that of your own accord?
15 A. I was assigned to accompany them.
16 Q. Who gave you that task, Colonel?
17 A. Major Franken.
18 Q. On that occasion, did you have your personal weaponry with you?
19 A. Yes. My pistol and ten bullets. And as I mentioned earlier,
20 that's -- you have that with you as a status symbol but it's not really
21 for fighting.
22 Q. When you mentioned that at a certain point in Kladanj, you were
23 captured by some members of the AB and H, was the handgun taken away from
25 A. Yes, that's correct.
1 Q. Was it taken away immediately, in Kladanj, or sometime later, when
2 you left the area?
3 A. Actually, immediately before we arrived in Kladanj, we
4 encountered, I believe, the front reconnaissance of the ABiH, and they
5 were suspicious of what was happening. They stopped us, took our weapons
6 away, and took us away, or rather, we walked away with them, to their
8 Q. The next day, you continued on towards Split; is that correct?
9 A. Well, I travelled via Tuzla. In the end, after some
10 interruptions, I reached Split. It may have taken me another two or three
12 Q. Who were you given permission from for you not to have to return
13 to Srebrenica but, rather, to go on towards Split, if you were given that
14 permission by anyone? Perhaps this was of your own will.
15 A. There was a Dutch colonel, Colonel Branz [phoen] in Tuzla. I
16 spoke with him there and discussed this subject matter with him and he
17 knew what was happening. I certainly didn't go off on my own. That
18 wouldn't work. You need transportation, and helicopter, I even travelled
19 part of the way in a caterpillar vehicle. You can't do that of your own
21 Q. Thank you. In order to conclude, Colonel, sir, I still have
22 something that is unclear to me. During your examination-in-chief on the
23 22nd of September, on page 17, lines 14 through 17 of the transcript,
24 having been asked by the OTP how many men were separated and taken away in
25 Tisce, in Luka, when you reached that area on the 12th of July, you
1 responded, if you remember, "In my view, there were ten to 15 men, not
2 more than that. There was great commotion and I couldn't move about
3 freely." Do you remember that?
4 A. I don't remember saying whether there was great consternation but
5 I do remember saying that there were 10 to 15 men and that I did not have
6 freedom of movement.
7 Q. Thank you. This is precisely what I wanted to ask you. I would
8 kindly ask the registrar to show us yet again Colonel Boering's statement
9 of the 10th of February 1998, this being a Defence Exhibit, the number is
10 4 D25. In the English, this is page 11, paragraph 3. So page 11,
11 paragraph 3. In the B/C/S, it is page 11, paragraph 1.
12 Colonel, could you please focus on the middle part of the third
13 paragraph? I wanted to read out one sentence only. "At one point, VRS
14 soldiers separated two or three Muslims from the convoy. First they had
15 to wait by the side of a vehicle and then they were taken a bit further on
16 along the road. I don't know what happened to them."
17 Colonel, I see a different number here, as regards the number of
18 people who were separated from the rest of the convoy. The number here
19 being two or three. Therefore, which option is correct?
20 A. I don't believe that one needs to exclude the other.
21 Q. I agree. You are right. Ten or 15 men always implies two or
22 three. However, my question is simple: Were there two, three, 10 or 15
23 men that were separated?
24 A. Well, in the very first statement, you see, at a point that I
25 state this is happening to two or three, it's possible that they were
1 separated in other places as well but in my view, I certainly saw more
2 being separated.
3 Q. Why didn't you say so to the Prosecutor's Office when you provided
4 your statement in 1998, when your memory was much fresher, as you said
5 yourself, than today, six years later? Or eight years later, rather.
6 A. I really don't remember.
7 Q. I will not insist on that. However, help me with this. The
8 situation is very similar. It may be very important to us. Can the
9 witness be shown the same document, page 10, paragraph 4, in the English
10 version, please? The same statement, page 10, paragraph 4. In B/C/S, it
11 is page 9, the penultimate paragraph on that page.
12 The paragraph is very short and I'm going to read it to you in its
13 entirety, Colonel. You say here, "When we returned to Potocari from
14 Bratunac, I saw that Mladic was already there. The screening process had
15 already started. The separation of Muslim males had begun. VRS soldiers
16 were not inside the compound but they tried to enter. The separated men
17 were taken to an unfinished house. I tried to go there, but I was stopped
18 by the VRS soldiers."
19 On your direct, you said as follows: "I entered that house."
20 This is what you said. Help us with this. Did you or did you not enter
21 the unfinished house, as you described it yourself?
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I have to stop you, Mr. Stojanovic. This was --
23 question was dealt with, I don't know whether you were present here. I
24 think you were not, in fact. But this question was put to the witness and
25 he has answered it in no unclear terms. So I don't think he needs to be
1 faced with it again.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation].
3 Q. I'm asking you this for the following reason. The way I
4 understood you in response to my colleague from the Popovic team asked you
5 why didn't you mention having seen passports in that house?
6 A. Will the question continue or was the subject not supposed to be
7 addressed? I'm a little bit unclear now.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, Mr. Stojanovic is seeking to attack your
9 credibility, suggesting that you have no reason, plausible reason, why you
10 never mentioned the passports before in your statement to anybody. This
11 is -- and why I am allowing the question. But Mr. Stojanovic equally is
12 obviously forgetting that we are three -- four professional judges here
13 and not a lay jury. So we are not easily impressed.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Would you please repeat your
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation].
17 Q. My last question to you is this: You saw the passports in the
18 corner of that house. Why didn't you mention that in the statement that
19 you provided to the Prosecutor's Office in 1998 and even before that, in
21 A. I don't know.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would like to
23 finish by asking the usher to put a document on the ELMO and I would
24 kindly ask the witness, who has stated that he is familiar with the
25 Cyrillic letter, to help us with this document and to try and read any of
1 the three names of the towns which are indicated on this document. I have
2 ample copies for the Trial Chamber and this will be my last question,
3 Your Honours. This is the Cyrillic script and the names of the towns in
4 Eastern Bosnia.
5 Q. Colonel, sir, bearing in mind the fact that your knowledge of the
6 Cyrillic script is limited, I would still ask you whether you can read the
7 names of any of these three towns indicated on this piece of paper.
8 A. I can try the bottom one, Brecelija [phoen], something like that.
9 Q. Thank you, Colonel.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Just for the record, Your
11 Honours, the towns mentioned here are in the vicinity of the place where
12 the developments took place, and the names are Sekovici, Bijeljina, and
13 Vlasenica. The bottom town is Vlasenica through which the column passed
14 and the colonel tried to read the name of that third town.
15 Thank you very much, Your Honours. I have no further questions.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Before we adjourn, very quickly,
17 Madam Fauveau, what's your anticipated time tomorrow?
18 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Mr. President, some two hours.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: You'll still need two hours.
20 Mr. Krgovic?
21 MR. KRGOVIC: My colleague David Josse will cross-examine this
22 witness, let's say half an hour.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Haynes or Mr. Sarapa, whoever?
24 MR. SARAPA: [Interpretation] Two hours.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: You need two hours?
1 MR. SARAPA: [Interpretation] Two hours, yes.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: So that is advance notice that you will not finish
3 tomorrow. We stand adjourned.
4 Thank you.
5 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.47 p.m.,
6 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 26th day of
7 September, 2006, at 2.15 p.m.