1 Tuesday, 31 October 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.13 a.m.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Registrar, good morning to you. Could you
6 kindly 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.
10 All accused are here. Defence teams are all here, minus Mr.
11 Bourgon, for justified reason communicated to Chambers.
12 Prosecution, Mr. Vanderpuye and Mr. McCloskey.
13 So I think we can safely start.
14 First thing before I ask if there are any preliminaries or
15 whatever, yesterday in order to make it possible for all the staff for the
16 sitting to finish more or less in time, and not disrupt the next sitting,
17 we had not admitted, gone through the document admission. So we need to
18 do that first and foremost.
19 Mr. Vanderpuye, we start with you. We want to make sure of what
20 you are tendering because some documents obviously formed part of the
21 previous testimony of your witness, and I think we need to identify those
22 this time. That's number 1. Second, then you made use of some documents
23 in the course of his testimony and again those need to be admitted
24 provided there are no valid objections. So let's start, Mr. Vanderpuye.
25 MR. VANDERPUYE: Good morning, Mr. President. Thank you. Good
1 morning, Your Honours. Good morning, counsel, gentlemen.
2 The exhibits that had been admitted pursuant to the prior
3 testimony of the witness on 23rd May 2000 are as follows: First there is
4 the transcript which is designated P02272 which I had asked to be admitted
5 under seal.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: That's admitted already.
7 MR. VANDERPUYE: Then there is a photograph -- I mean rather a map
8 depicting the area of between Zvornik and Nova Kasaba with a yellow dot
9 that was referred to in the testimony. That is designated P01470. There
10 is also a photograph of a small brick shed with a red fence around it.
11 That is designated P01921. Then there is another photograph of a road and
12 a hill in the background. And that's referred to in the testimony as well
13 and that's P01922. There is a photograph of the edge of the Jadar River,
14 it's a bank, that is P01923. And then there is a Polaroid photograph of
15 an entrance and exit wound, bullet wound, and that's designated P01924.
16 I'm informed by our case manager that she was able to find a
17 colour copy of that that I understand is appended to that exhibit as a
18 second page. Those are the exhibits relevant to the prior testimony of
19 the witness.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. And just for clarity's sake, when you
21 say P01470, that's P01470 in this case and not in the previous case, isn't
23 MR. VANDERPUYE: That's correct.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. I knew it was but I just want to
25 avoid the possibility of a confusion later on.
1 Yes. Then there is P02273 which is a pseudonym sheet under seal.
2 MR. VANDERPUYE: That's correct. And with respect to his
3 testimony, in this proceeding, P01618 is a photograph of the area of
4 Konjevic Polje that is unmarked. Then there was P02274 which was a marked
5 version of the same photograph that the witness testified to and then
6 PIC00031 was the same photograph with the markings that the witness then
7 again marked in court. P01935 is a photo of a house in front of a -- in a
8 small field that the witness referred to as well. P02275 is a photo with
9 a couple of houses on a small field as well. And PIC00032 is the Polaroid
10 photograph of the entrance and exit wound that the witness testified to
11 prior but had been marked in these proceedings.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Any objection from any of the Defence teams
13 to the admission of any of these documents? Have you been given a copy of
14 the coloured photo of the entry and exit wound?
15 MR. VANDERPUYE: That hasn't been provided to Defence counsel, but
16 my understanding it's been uploaded to e-court so it's available to them
17 for inspection.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: So I take it there are no objections from anyone, so
19 all these documents tendered are being admitted.
20 Now, Defence documents. Mr. Zivanovic?
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good morning, Your Honour. We would like to
22 tender into evidence the document 5D89. It is handwritten declaration of
23 the last witness.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Okay. Is it 5D89 or is it -- because what I
25 have on my sheet of paper, I have 1D5D. It is 5D -- all right. So any
1 objection from any of the Defence, other Defence teams or from the
3 MR. VANDERPUYE: No objection.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you.
5 I think there was Mr. Krgovic.
6 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. We would like to
7 tender for admission two documents with numbers 5D85. Those are the
8 discharge letters. We would like to tender pages 3 and 4 of that
9 document. The first one is a discharge letter from the hospital, relative
10 to the witness, dated 16 July 1995, and the second document is a letter to
11 whom it may concern, from the medical centre, with the same date. Your
12 Honour, there is a mistake in the translation but we will officially ask
13 for a correction of that mistake from the translation service and then we
14 will subsequently submit that correction.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Krgovic. Any objections from any
16 of the other Defence teams or Prosecution?
17 MR. VANDERPUYE: There is no objection.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So these two pages will also be admitted.
19 Madam Registrar, please put on record that both documents or Exhibit
20 1D5D89 and the newly admitted Exhibit 6D5D85 consisting of two pages will
21 be kept under seal.
22 Mr. Haynes or Mr. Sarapa, I don't know who is dealing with this,
23 you also made use of some documents during your cross-examination.
24 MR. HAYNES: Yes. We would wish to tender into evidence two
25 exhibits, please. The first, which -- and I understand the written notice
1 is on its way to the Court manager, will be 7D55, which is a section of
2 video, the ERN number of which is V0001357-1-A, from 27 minutes to 28
3 minutes. That's the video of the Orthodox Church and cemetery. And the
4 second exhibit is 7D56, which is the order for mobilisation of able-bodied
5 men between the ages of 16 and 60 which you will mark for identification
6 purposes only because it is not yet translated into English.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Could I ask you to repeat again, please, the video
8 reference number? It's V.
9 MR. HAYNES: V000-1357.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Is it 1357 or 1375?
11 MR. HAYNES: 1357.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Could you check that because then it has been given
13 wrongly to us.
14 MR. HAYNES: Yes, I'll certainly check that. I'm sure it is 1357.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: It's 3757, okay?
16 MR. HAYNES: Dash 1-A.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: And that will be become 7D55?
18 MR. HAYNES: Your Honour, yes.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Any objections from any of the other Defence teams
20 or Prosecution?
21 MR. VANDERPUYE: There is no objection.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: So these two documents are also so admitted.
23 That's it. To my knowledge, Mr. Meek or Mr. Stojanovic, I don't
24 think you wish to tender any documents, do you? Or Madam Fauveau? All
25 right. I think we can chose that chapter here. And before we bring in
1 the next witness, are there any preliminary matters you wish to raise?
2 Mr. Haynes?
3 MR. HAYNES: Yes. The outstanding question of protective measures
4 and safe conduct for Witness 115. I can say having consulted all of my
5 colleagues that there will be no objection to those applications. If you
6 don't mind a little preamble, because I'm asked to say this, we
7 collectively take the view that orders of this sort are generically
8 intended to bring the best evidence out of witnesses and those that make
9 these applications are in the best position to say whether they are
10 required. And in such applications made by the Prosecution of this sort,
11 we defer to their better judgement and respect the applications knowing
12 that in due course, that respect and deference will be repaid.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Mr. McCloskey, are you in the mood of
14 committing yourself?
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: I think that was an offer and anything I say is
16 going to be an acceptance, but I generally feel the same, so I don't think
17 it should be a problem.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. From our position we only grant
19 protective measures when we really are satisfied that the requirements of
20 the law are met, and when in borderline cases, we usually take the step of
21 interviewing the witness before he or she begins the testimony to make
22 sure that it's a genuine case of -- and not something which is made up.
23 So I think we can bring in the witness. You need to bring down the
25 Now, for those of you who have not had courtroom practice before,
1 this witness will be testifying with voice distortion. Now, it is
2 important that throughout the entire testimony, when she is testifying, no
3 one leaves his or her microphone on. All right? I will be keeping a
4 lookout and I invite my colleagues to do the same, because it does happen
5 many a time that someone does forget the microphone on, including
6 ourselves sometimes, but please try to adhere strictly to this rule.
7 Thank you.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, Madam. I wish to welcome you
10 to this Tribunal and to this case on behalf of the Trial Chamber. This is
11 the case against seven accused allegedly involved in the Srebrenica case.
12 And you are about to start giving evidence very shortly, but before you do
13 so, our rules require that you enter a solemn declaration to the effect
14 that in the course of your testimony, you will be speaking the truth, the
15 whole truth and nothing but the truth. Madam Usher, who is standing next
16 to you will be handing to you the text of the solemn declaration. As soon
17 as I finish talking, please read that declaration aloud, with the
18 understanding that that will be your undertaking with us that you will be
19 testifying the truth. Go ahead.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
21 the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
22 WITNESS: WITNESS PW-125
23 [Witness answered through interpreter]
24 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam. Please take a seat. Make
25 yourself comfortable. I'll explain to you a few other matters.
1 Now, as I speak in English, whatever I am saying and for that
2 matter whatever anyone else will be saying in the course of these
3 proceedings, will be translated to you in your own language. If at any
4 time you are not receiving interpretation or the interpretation you are
5 receiving is not clear or not loud enough or too loud, please draw our
6 attention straight away and we will see what we can do.
7 Next thing I wanted to tell you is that the Prosecution has asked
8 on your behalf for some protective measures to be put in place. We have
9 carefully examined the case and we have agreed with the Prosecution to
10 grant you protective measures. However, you may wish also to note that
11 all the Defence teams agreed with the Prosecution that it is indeed the
12 case of having these protective measures in place.
13 These protective measures are the following: We have ordered that
14 no one will be able to see your face while following these proceedings, of
15 course, outside these four walls of this courtroom. If you look at your
16 monitor, cameras are going to point on you and you will see how others
17 will be seeing you from outside this courtroom. If the cameras could
18 please focus on the witness. All right. This is how others will be
19 seeing you. In addition, we have also decided to put in place voice
20 distortion. While you testify, no one will be able to hear your true
21 voice. Your voice will be distorted. And so no one would be able to
22 recognise you from your voice.
23 The third and also perhaps very important, if not the most
24 important, precaution, protective measure we have put in place is to hide
25 your name and surname, you're identity, and therefore no one will be
1 referring to you by your name here and instead we will be using a number.
2 And for all intents and purposes, in the records of this case, you will be
3 known and referred to as Witness PW-125, 125. Of course, there will be
4 moments when questions will be put to you that necessarily, by answering
5 them, one would be able to identify you. In those cases, we will go into
6 private session and that basically means that only the persons inside this
7 courtroom will be able to follow the proceedings and nobody else outside
8 this courtroom.
9 I hope this puts your mind at rest and enables you to testify with
10 relative ease and tranquillity and that these protective measures are to
11 your satisfaction.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So you are first going to be asked a
14 series of questions by Mr. McCloskey who is lead counsel for the Office of
15 the Prosecutor in this case. He will then be followed by each of the
16 Defence teams, also, I assume.
17 Mr. McCloskey.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President. Good morning.
19 Examination by Mr. McCloskey:
20 Q. Good morning, Witness.
21 A. Good morning.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Your microphone.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY:
24 Q. Are you ready to give this a try?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Okay. You've been able to take a deep breath and answer my
2 questions and everyone's today. Okay. We'll start off by showing you a
3 piece of paper with a name on it and if you could take a look at it and
4 tell us if that's you.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey, if it is because you're rather tall,
6 if it's more convenient for you to conduct your examination-in-chief
7 sitting down so that you can switch on and off the microphone, we
8 certainly have no objection or no problem with that.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President. It's been many years
10 since I've done that but I'll give it a try.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Perhaps you can show it to one of the Defence
13 teams. I suppose you can assure the others that it is the correct name
14 and let us have a look at it.
15 Thank you. So that will be given a number later on, and it will
16 be kept under seal, Madam Registrar.
17 Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY:
19 Q. Okay. If we could go into private session for just the first few
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Certainly.
22 [Private session]
11 Page 3304 redacted. Private session.
13 [Open session]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. We are in open session.
15 MR. McCLOSKEY:
16 Q. Now, your family is living in Srebrenica. Can you tell us what
17 the conditions of living in Srebrenica were like in the weeks leading up
18 before the attack on Srebrenica?
19 A. I don't understand. Are you talking about 1993 or 1995?
20 Q. Good question. I'm talking about the -- what living was like
21 before July 1995, say in May and June and July.
22 A. The conditions were not good. There was no food. We did not have
23 much to eat. There was no clothes or footwear. We suffered. Every day I
24 went with my father from one house to another begging for a kilo of flour
25 or beans. We were selling needles. We would make umbrellas using all the
1 wire. We did not have footwear. I wore the same pair of slippers to go
2 to school from Zelani Jadar to Srebrenica. It took me two hours in every
3 direction. I walked over the stones. Sometimes I could not feel my feet.
4 My feet were cut. There was no footwear. When it was raining, we would
5 get to school in Srebrenica wet through. In a nutshell, the conditions
6 were rather terrible, they were not good at all.
7 Q. And so you were 13 at about -- at that time?
8 A. I was 13 at the time when Srebrenica fell. At the age of 10, as a
9 young girl, I left my home forever.
10 Q. Okay. And what settlement were you living in in June, before
11 Srebrenica fell?
12 A. In Zelani Jadar a place called Slapovici. This was a camp, a
13 settlement that was constructed by the Swedes. This is where we lived.
14 And before that, we lived in Srebrenica, from 1993 to 1994, maybe, and we
15 resided in the culture hall. This is the facility where we lived. This
16 is where we had one room that 15 of us shared. We were thankful even for
17 that room because there were people living on the roads. They did not
18 have a roof over their heads. They had to sleep outside and cook outside.
19 At least we had one room, although we used it to cook, sleep, wash there.
20 This was all we had.
21 Q. Okay. I want to take you now to July 1995 when the attack began
22 on Srebrenica. What did you and your family do from Slapovici?
23 A. We lived there up to 1995, up to the month of July, when the
24 attack started. We lived there and we started fleeing towards
25 Srebrenica. All the villages around us, Suceska and others, were moving
1 towards Srebrenica. There was no where else to go. Srebrenica was the
2 only place where we could go.
3 Q. Why did you flee to Srebrenica?
4 A. Well, because there was shooting from all sides. We had to flee.
5 We had to go somewhere, together with the rest of the people. We did not
6 know what else to do. We were like in a hole, like in a pit. There was
7 nowhere to go. We didn't know what to do, where to go. We just set off
8 and hoped for the best.
9 Q. And where did you go?
10 A. We were fleeing together with the rest of the people; we were not
11 alone. There were other people fleeing towards Srebrenica. We arrived in
12 Srebrenica in my aunt's house. There were shots from all over the place.
13 This is where we found shelter. We spent a night there at my mother's
14 aunt's place.
15 On the following day, there was shelling and the window panes were
16 broken on the house. We threw ourselves on the floor. My father covered
17 my body so as to save me from the debris. At one point, people started
18 running and shouting, "We have to flee. The Chetniks are coming to
19 Srebrenica." And then all of a sudden, we started fleeing. Again we
20 didn't know where to go. We went to the UNPROFOR to ask for help, for
22 Q. Let me stop you there. When your father protected you from the
23 glass, was that in an apartment in Srebrenica town?
24 A. Yes. Close to the town. Not in the very centre but the house is
25 close to the town itself. Not in the very centre but very close to it.
1 Q. And when you say you went to UNPROFOR, was -- where was the
2 location of the UNPROFOR that you went to?
3 A. They were in Srebrenica, in front of the post office building. We
4 were moving towards them. There were a lot of people. The road was full
5 of people. My brother and I got separated in that commotion, each of us
6 went our separate ways. My mother and my father and my grandmother went
7 yet another direction. As I was running, I saw a dead man on the street.
8 I don't know whether he had been killed or what. We had to step over his
10 Then we arrived in front of the post office building, in front of
11 the UNPROFOR. People asked them to help them, and the UNPROFOR troops
12 said that we should go back to our homes and they said that nothing would
13 happen to us. As we started returning, below the hospital, we found our
14 mother who had fainted because she didn't know where I and my brother
15 were. This was a stream there. We did not have anything to put water
16 into to help my mother. My brother took some water in his mouth and spit
17 on her to help her, and then my father came. I don't know how the two of
18 them had gotten separated in the first place, and where my grandmother
19 was. Then we returned to the apartment where my maternal grandparents
20 lived together with my mother's two brothers.
21 Q. And what did you decide -- what did the family decide to do after
23 A. We spent a night there. Again there were shots. We didn't know
24 what to do. And in the morning, around 11.00, men, elderly and young and
25 a few younger girls, decided to go through the woods. My brother and my
1 father said that they would join them because everybody decided to go
2 there. My mother gave them a loaf of bread each and we also had a kilo of
3 salt and a kilo of sugar. That's what she put in their backpacks. We
4 said goodbye to each other. Actually I said goodbye to my brother and my
5 father. My mother didn't want to look at them because everybody knew that
6 that goodbye would be a most difficult thing and they left. And a couple
7 of hours later, we joined the rest of the people and went to Potocari.
8 Q. And how did you get to Potocari?
9 A. There were a lot of people. We went along the road. We went down
10 there. We were accommodated in the factories there. There were a lot of
11 people. On the first day, there was shooting. As we were walking, we
12 were not shelled directly but shells were falling around us. And when we
13 arrived in Potocari, the first day was peaceful and calm. Nobody touched
14 us. They did not enter the crowd of people. My uncle was with us. We
15 found him in Potocari. And we also found my and my brother's friend. We
16 entered the factory. We spent the night there although we didn't sleep.
17 We were afraid.
18 Q. Okay. That first day that you got to Potocari, did you see any
19 Serb soldiers in Potocari around your factory?
20 A. No. Not on the first day.
21 Q. And could we go into private session just briefly again?
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Let's go into private session for a while,
24 [Private session]
15 [Open session]
16 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session.
17 MR. McCLOSKEY:
18 Q. Now, do you remember the -- that date, that first day that you
19 actually -- that you walked with this group to Potocari?
20 A. It was the 11th of July.
21 Q. Okay. I think you said you spent the night in that factory --
22 that night. Can you tell us what happened on the 12th of July briefly?
23 A. Well, on the 12th of July, I saw Serb soldiers. (redacted)
5 A. I don't know when this was. It was around noon, I would say. I
6 don't know exactly how late it was. I was too afraid to look at the
8 Q. How many men took them away?
9 A. Two men came to take them away.
10 Q. And how were those men dressed?
11 A. I don't know. I did not look at their clothes. I really can't
12 remember that.
13 Q. Okay. And what happened after that?
14 A. Well, the second night fell. My uncle returned. And that night,
15 there was a lot of screaming around 2 or 3.00. After midnight, I could
16 hear a lot of people screaming. And it's beyond words. I can't even
17 begin to describe how terrible this was. That night was really, really
18 terrible. When you hear maybe 30.000 people all screaming at the same
19 time, there is just no way to describe that situation.
20 Q. Were there Serb soldiers in the area on the 12th of July?
21 A. I saw them during the day, walking through the groups of people.
22 They mingled with the people. During the night, I did not leave our
23 factory. I did not see them inside the factory. And I don't know what
24 the situation was outside. I don't know whether any of them were outside
25 the factory where I was.
1 Q. And what happened on the next day, the 13th of July?
2 A. On the 13th of July, we decided to go because people started
3 leaving towards Tuzla. My uncle was afraid because we had heard that men
4 were being separated from the rest of the people. We at first wanted to
5 linger on a little but then I said to my mother, "Mom, we have to go."
6 Then we set off. We arrived there at the place we were supposed to be.
7 There was a taped-off area and they were letting us go. There were buses
8 there. They let me and my mother and my uncle go. My mother's parents
9 and brother were not allowed to go with us in that -- and that group. And
10 then when they let us go, they said to my uncle, "You have to step aside."
11 He left and they told me, "You can't go either." And they allowed my
12 mother to go to the lorries that were there. As for my uncle, we never
13 saw him again. We just saw him being taken to the side, as had been
14 ordered. My mother and I started crying. We asked -- we started pleading
15 with them to let me go together with my mother. There was a group of
16 those Chetniks, I don't know what to call them. That's the name I heard.
17 We were both crying and they repeated that I couldn't go, that my mother
18 should go, and my mother said, "I have only her. Please let her go. I
19 don't have anybody else."
20 And then an UNPROFOR soldier came. My mother pleaded with him.
21 And she was telling him, "Please let her go. I don't have anybody but
22 her." She was crying all the while. Then he went up there to them to ask
23 them again, this was not approved, and then one person from that group
24 said, "Okay. Let's let her go. She is a child." And the other cursed
25 him and said, "Look at the little girl. She is so beautiful." Then my
1 mother and I started walking towards the lorries. And I was saying to my
2 mother, "Please, hurry up, mom. The lorries are leaving." And she said
3 to me, "I can't let them kill us both." And as we got on the lorry, my
4 mother fainted and never came to until the moment we arrived at the place
5 where we were being taken to. There was an old lady who had some water
6 and used that water to help my mother, to cool her off.
7 Q. Now, you said there was a Dutch soldier, I think, that your mother
8 pleaded with. And did you say that Dutch soldier went over and talked to
9 the Chetniks or the Serbs? Is that right?
10 A. Yes.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam, if at any time it becomes difficult for you
12 to continue testifying and you need a little bit of a break, please tell
13 us straight away and we will have a short break.
14 MR. McCLOSKEY:
15 Q. Okay. Another deep breath. And were you and your mother able to
16 take the bus and eventually walk to Kladanj?
17 A. Yes. We got on to the truck and then we reached Kladanj.
18 Q. And since those days, have you ever seen your father or your uncle
19 or your brother alive?
20 A. No. Never again. We hoped every day, waited for them to come.
21 When we just arrived, I went from Tuzla to Dubrava where people were
22 crossing over, and I waited, but we never found out anything about them
23 until they were identified, and that's when all hope died for us.
24 Q. You've told me that they were able to find your uncle's remains in
25 Pilica and your father's in Cerska; is that right?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And did you see a -- if we could go into private session just
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's go into private session for a while, please.
5 [Private session]
10 [Open session]
11 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session. And if I could just
12 reiterate my recommendation that as soon as you finish your question, you
13 switch off the microphone, please. Thank you.
14 One moment. Madam, Mr. Zivanovic is appearing for Colonel Popovic
15 in this case and he will be cross-examining you first.
16 Cross-examination by Mr. Zivanovic:
22 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Let's go into private session for a
23 minute, please.
24 [Private session]
11 Pages 3316-3317 redacted. Private session.
25 [Open session]
1 JUDGE AGIUS: For the record, since we were in private session,
2 the totality of Mr. Zivanovic's cross-examination of the witness was
3 conducted in private session.
4 Who is going next? Mr. Meek is representing Colonel Beara and he
5 will be -- or I don't know if he will be cross-examining you.
6 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours. We have no
7 questions for this witness, thank you.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Meek.
9 Madam Nikolic is representing Lieutenant Nikolic in this case and
10 let's see if she is cross-examining you.
11 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. We have no
12 questions for this witness, thank you.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam Nikolic. Mr. Lazarevic is
14 appearing for General Borovcanin in this case. And he will be
15 cross-examining or --
16 MR. LAZAREVIC: No. This witness does not call for
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. And Madam Fauveau?
19 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Just a few questions, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Madam Fauveau is representing General
21 Miletic in this case. Go ahead and please, your microphone.
22 Cross-examination by Ms. Fauveau:
23 Q. [Interpretation] Madam, you mentioned the conditions prevailing in
24 Srebrenica in 1995. You said that they were very bad. Can we say that in
25 1993, when you arrived in Srebrenica, the conditions were just as bad?
1 A. Yes. In 1993 -- from 1993 to 1995 the conditions were difficult
2 for food, clothing, footwear. If any convoy did happen to arrive in
3 Srebrenica, it would be coincidental. They were stopping and preventing
4 convoys from reaching Srebrenica and perhaps all we would receive would be
5 two kilograms of flour, to cover five members of our family. That would
6 be all.
7 Q. When in Potocari you were able to get on a bus with your mother,
8 you were relieved, weren't you?
9 A. The fear and everything that my mother and I experienced cannot be
10 described. But when I got into the truck, I in a way escaped from what
11 possibly could have happened to me, but my mother couldn't come to until
12 we reached our territory, but still during the trip itself, a person
13 didn't know what could happen. Something could have happened on the trip
15 Q. Is it fair to say that when you got to Kladanj, you were relieved?
16 A. Yes. When I crossed into our territory, when we arrived, we were
17 not completely on our territory. We also had to go through Serb territory
18 and then when we did cross into our territory, we did feel relief, but
19 then there was pain too because we thought that our dear ones had come too
20 but then when we saw that they were not there, then there was terrible
21 pain, suffering, crying.
22 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. No further
24 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam Fauveau.
25 Mr. Josse or Mr. Krgovic, are you cross-examining the witness?
1 MR. KRGOVIC: We have no questions for this witness, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. And Mr. Krgovic represents General
3 Gvero here. And Mr. Haynes or Mr. Sarapa?
4 MR. HAYNES: Your Honour, nor I.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. And Mr. Haynes represents General Pandurevic.
6 Is there re-examination by any chance?
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: No, Mr. President.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam, that fortunately brings your testimony to an
9 end here, which means that you are free to go back to your residence. Our
10 staff will be assisting you to facilitate your return back home at the
11 earliest. On behalf of my colleagues, Judge Kwon, Judge Prost and Judge
12 Stole, I wish to thank you for having come over to give testimony. And on
13 behalf of everyone here, I wish you a safe journey back home.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 [The witness withdrew]
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Make sure there is no broadcasting of her going out.
17 So, documents or exhibits?
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President. The pseudonym sheet, P02276
19 and the one still, P02277.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah. He only made use of one, I think. He made --
21 78, 02278. But you're tendering also --
22 MR. McCLOSKEY: No, I think one is enough. I didn't want to do
23 the second one.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: The one you used is 02278.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: So any objection? None? So the -- both the
2 pseudonym sheet and P2278 are being admitted and both will be kept under
4 Yes. I think it's the case of taking a break now.
5 One thing for the record, because it occurred to me sometime
6 during the night. Yesterday, when Mr. Vanderpuye sought to introduce the
7 transcripts of that witness's previous testimony, inadvertently I may have
8 mentioned that it was being admitted under Rule 92 ter instead of Rule
9 89(F). I may have made that mistake. I know that it was tendered under
10 89(F). So for the record, I am correcting myself and the record. Thank
12 The break needs to be of 30 minutes because of the redactions.
13 --- Recess taken at 10.25 a.m.
14 --- On resuming at 11.04 a.m.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Before we start with the next witness, it has been
16 brought to our attention, and Mr. McCloskey, correct me if I'm wrong, that
17 in our decision of the 23rd of August, we went beyond what you requested
18 by way of protective measures for this new witness; namely, you had
19 requested pseudonym and facial distortion, which we granted, but we also
20 granted, for reasons that here and now I cannot explain, it probably was
21 an oversight, voice distortion. That's our decision which we would very
22 quickly be prepared to vary if you stick or you declare that you stick to
23 your original request.
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. He think we can stick to the original
25 request. I have discussed that with the witness and I think he's okay
1 with --
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. All right. So having heard Mr. McCloskey, we
3 vary our decision of the 23rd of August 2006, in which we had granted the
4 following protective measures to Witness PW-113; namely, the use of a
5 pseudonym and facial and voice distortion, by retaining only the use of
6 pseudonym and facial distortion. There will no longer be voice
7 distortion. So thank you. You can admit the witness, please.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, sir, and welcome to this
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning. Thank you.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: You have testified already before this Tribunal in
13 another case, so more or less you should be familiar with the procedure,
14 even though a few years have passed since your last testimony here. Madam
15 Usher, who is standing right next to you, will be handing you the text of
16 the solemn declaration. Once you have read it out aloud, that would
17 become your solemn undertaking with this Tribunal, that in the course of
18 your testimony, you will speak the truth, the whole truth and nothing but
19 the truth. So please proceed with the reading of that solemn declaration
20 and we can start with your testimony soon after.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
22 the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
23 WITNESS: WITNESS PW-113
24 [Witness answered through interpreter]
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Please take a seat. Make yourself
2 There are a couple of things that I need to explain to you before
3 you start giving evidence, and first is the following: Sometime back, Mr.
4 McCloskey, who is lead counsel for the Prosecution in this case, asked us
5 to issue, to grant, some protective measures. The idea being to hide, to
6 protect your identity, to hide your identity from the world outside this
7 courtroom, which would enable you to testify with greater ease. The
8 protective measures that were asked from us were the following: First,
9 that we would never use your name here and that you will be referred to
10 and identified as with a pseudonym and we have granted that. No one will
11 refer to you by your name. You will be referred to by a pseudonym, and
12 you, for the records, you will be known as Witness PW-113.
13 The Prosecution also asked that to further protect your identity,
14 we should put in place a system whereby no one could see your face while
15 you testify here, and we have granted that. So you will be testifying
16 with facial distortion. If the technicians kindly focus the camera on
17 you, and if you look at your monitor, this is how you will appear to the
18 outside world. No one will be able to see your face, but only a set of
19 coloured squares.
20 Of course, in the course of the testimony, there will be questions
21 which you will be required to answer, and by answering those questions,
22 your identity could be revealed. In those instances, we will go into
23 so-called private session. I suppose you are used to this as well.
24 Basically this means that what is being said while the private session is
25 on will only and can only be heard by the persons inside this courtroom
1 and, of course, the technicians who are -- and interpreters who are
2 working behind the glass panels that you see on either side of the
3 courtroom. No one else will be able to hear what is being said while we
4 are in private session. Again, that is another mode which we will be
5 putting in place to protect your identity.
6 First of all, is that to your satisfaction?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it is.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you.
9 Mr. McCloskey will go first. He will be examining you. However,
10 since -- any way, I'll leave you in the hands of Mr. McCloskey. He will
11 be followed subsequently by the various Defence teams on
12 cross-examination, something which each accused is entitled to do.
13 So if at any moment you require a break, please do tell us, don't
14 hesitate, and we will grant you a break.
15 Mr. McCloskey.
16 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
17 Examination by Mr. McCloskey:
18 Q. Good morning, Witness. First let's start out. I've got a piece
19 of paper that I want you to look at and tell us if this person on the
20 paper is you.
21 A. Yes, this is me.
22 Q. And that's 65 ter P02279.
23 Now, in the last couple of days, did you have a chance to have
24 testimony from a Blagojevic trial read back to you in your own language?
25 A. Yes, I did.
1 Q. And as far as you know, was that the entire -- your entire
2 testimony from that trial?
3 A. Yes. That was.
4 Q. And did you point out two mistakes in that testimony to me?
5 A. I did.
6 Q. Okay. And aside from that, can you declare that the information
7 in that transcript accurately reflects your declaration on the subjects?
8 A. Yes. It is accurate save for those two mistakes.
9 Q. Okay. And if you were asked the same questions today, would your
10 answers be the same?
11 A. They would be, of course.
12 Q. Okay. Let me just go to the mistakes briefly and deal with them.
13 If we could go to -- I'll just go to page 1418, lines 2 and 3, and I'll
14 just say this for the record. It says, in English, "that I looked after
15 the flat of you and your mothers and I protected it and you're killing
16 innocent people." The mistake that was pointed out by the witness is that
17 what he really said was, "I looked after your mother, Stana, and you, and
18 protected her." The word for "flat" in Bosnian is similar to Stan or
19 Stana and that's just the mistake as he explained it with the interpreter.
20 And the second mistake is on page 1423, and that is when he was
21 telling about where he was going after the executions, and I think I'll
22 have him clear up that mistake after I read the summary of his testimony.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Which means you can proceed with the reading
24 of the summary straight away.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you. And if we could go into private
1 session just for the first couple of lines.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, let's go into private session for a short
4 [Private session]
10 [Open session]
11 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session, Mr. McCloskey.
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: "After the occupation of Cerska and Konjevic
13 Polje, his family moved to the area around Srebrenica.
14 "From about the beginning of July, there was shelling every day,
15 and on about 11 July, the witness, his father, his mother and three
16 sisters decided they had to leave their home. They set off together to
17 the village of Suceska where they split up. The witness and his father
18 went through the woods to the village of Jaglici and his mother and
19 sisters went towards the UN base in Potocari.
20 "The witness decided to go with his father because, and I
21 quote, 'I wasn't sure that UNPROFOR would protect us, certainly not the
22 men, considering all the experience in the war and knowing what the Serb
23 army had doing -- had been doing.'" That's page 1381, line 20 to 22.
24 "On the 11th of July, in the afternoon, there were about 10 to
25 15.000 people, predominantly men, including young men, and some women and
1 children, in the area. The column of people organised before dark but he
2 became separated from his father in the large crowd. The witness has not
3 seen his father since that time. Soldiers went ahead in the column while
4 most of the civilians stayed behind with a group of armed soldiers
5 remaining behind. He set off in the morning with the column.
6 "As the column moved forward on the 12th, it was shelled
7 throughout the day and there were increasingly more injured people who
8 were crying for help but were left in the woods. During the night of the
9 12th, the people were also fired upon. On the morning of the 13th, the
10 witness noticed five or six people around him that had been killed, and
11 many people in the group were confused and scared. The witness estimated
12 he saw about 300 to 500 dead people in the woods that day.
13 "At about 10 a.m. Serb soldiers were speaking over loudspeakers
14 saying the Muslims should surrender and threatening to shell them if they
15 did not surrender. The Serb soldiers stated they would be treated
16 according to the Geneva Conventions. The witness followed the people
17 through the woods and the people started surrendering. The witness came
18 out by the asphalt road and saw five or six soldiers telling people to
19 surrender and give up their bags, gold, deutschmarks. They insisted on
20 the money more than anything else. He was told to put his bag of
21 belongings near a tank by the asphalt road.
22 "Prior to the time everyone came from the woods, the Serb soldiers
23 behaved very properly. But when everybody had surrendered, the Serb
24 soldiers started to mistreat people. They started cursing and
25 saying, 'Fuck your balija mother' and asking for money again. The witness
1 saw another armoured weapon with a machine-gun mounted on it with the
2 words, 'Queen of death' written in the Cyrillic alphabet. The group of
3 Muslims he was with was forced to move along the road to a meadow near the
4 village of Sandici where there was a tank. On the way to the meadow the
5 witness saw a dead body in civilian clothes and he saw buses with Muslim
6 women and children in them driving in the direction of Konjevic Polje.
7 "The witness estimated about 2.000 Muslims were present at that
8 meadow. At about 5 p.m., a soldier at the meadow told everyone they would
9 be taken to hangars in Bratunac and exchanged. The Serbs also said that
10 anyone born in 1980 or after was allowed to leave. Three boys stood up
11 and were allowed to leave. Others who stood up or raised their hands were
12 not allowed to leave. The witness was with his uncle who told him to
13 raise his hand but the witness did not dare because the soldier had told
14 the previous child that he could not go. The witness's uncle did not
16 "The witness and others were then required to lay on their
17 stomachs and with their hands behind their necks. After about three
18 hours, several large trucks arrived and the people were loaded on to them.
19 The witness was ordered on to the last truck. The truck was covered with
20 a tarpaulin and it was extremely crowded and hot inside. People were
21 jammed together so nobody could sit down. The truck drove to Bratunac and
22 parked there overnight. The witness and others were held on the truck.
23 It was unbearable. The witness couldn't feel anything, his whole body
24 became numb. They asked for water but were told to be quiet and cursed
1 "The next morning the truck set off with other trucks. People on
2 his truck said they saw an UNPROFOR APC but he did not see it. Just
3 outside Bratunac, the trucks stopped and people in his truck were given a
4 small amount of water. They waited there for about two hours until about
5 10.00 a.m. or later, but still in the morning. And then the trucks set
6 off again in the direction of Konjevic Polje and then in the direction of
7 Zvornik. The trucks drove through Zvornik and Karakaj and turned left and
8 on to a school building with a concrete playing field. He and others in
9 the truck had to stay in the truck for about an hour. The conditions in
10 the truck were unbearable. People were screaming for water and one man
11 drank his own urine.
12 "When the witness was allowed off the truck, he and others were
13 directed to walk down the steps into the building and soldiers were
14 standing on both sides of the steps hitting the people as they went by and
15 cursing them. Once inside the building, the group went up some stairs.
16 As they were going up the stairs, a Serbian soldier said, 'Whose land is
17 this, this is Serbian land and will always remain so.' And the group had
18 to repeat this after him. At the top of the stairs, they turned left to a
19 hall way and walked down the hallway to one of the classrooms. There were
20 about four or five classrooms along the hallway and there was noise from
21 people inside those other classrooms.
22 "The conditions in the classrooms was very bad. They were not
23 allowed to go to the toilet and most everyone was soaked with urine. They
24 were given a small amount of water but everyone remained very thirsty.
25 The air in the classroom was hot and hard to breathe and when someone
1 tried to open a window, shots rang out breaking windows and wounding five
2 or six men. His group was making a lot of noise and the soldiers guarding
3 them pointed out two young men and said they would be killed unless the
4 group was quiet. A soldier came in the classroom and asked the group if
5 there was anyone from Cerska, Konjevic Polje, Glogova or Osmace and other
6 villages. Some men raised their hands and were taken outside the
7 classrooms and beating could be heard. Those men never returned.
8 "When darkness fell, the witness could hear soldiers telling
9 people in other classrooms to come out, two or three at a time. Gun fire
10 was then heard reverberating in the hallway. At about midnight, someone
11 said the people in the classroom would be going out for an examination of
12 some kind and he also mentioned being exchanged.
13 "The witness said, before -- before that, and I quote, 'Before
14 that people were talking amongst themselves and it was clear to us that
15 they were killing people from the other classrooms. That it would be
16 better for us if we all ran out at the same time. They couldn't kill
17 everyone. Because they were so -- because there were many more of us in
18 comparison with the soldiers, although they had weapons. Many people
19 didn't want to do that. They said maybe we'll survive. We shouldn't run
20 out. Nobody wanted to die.'" That's at page 1408, line 21 through 25 and
21 1409, lines 1 to 2.
22 "The witness and the others were led from the classroom and
23 ordered to remove their shoes and shirts. Their hands were tied behind
24 their backs and they were pushed into a dark classroom until everyone in
25 his group had their hands tied. Then they went down the stairs and
1 outside. The witness could feel stuff sticking to his feet as he walked
2 by dead people in front of the school. He and others were placed in the
3 back of the truck and people started screaming and shots were fired and
4 people were falling over each other. The truck drove to a location about
5 ten minutes away. First along an asphalt road, then along a macadam road
6 that caused the truck to shake. The truck stopped and he could hear
7 bursts of fire next to the truck. People were taken off his truck, five
8 at a time. One man tried to run away and shots were fired as he ran.
9 After that, a Muslim started to shout and scream and said, 'I looked after
10 your mother, Stana, and protected her and now you're killing innocent
12 "When the witness's turn came, he jumped off the truck and was
13 told to find a spot among the rows of dead people. He found a place to
14 stand and was told to lie down. As the witness fell forward, shots rang
15 out and he felt pain to his elbow and to his right side of his chest. The
16 witness stayed still on the ground and the firing continued around him and
17 he was hit with something in the foot. The soldier called out that anyone
18 who was still warm needs a bullet in his head. The man lying next to the
19 witness was shot in the head at close range by a soldier. As people were
20 being killed around him, the witness's biggest worry was that his mother
21 would never know where he was.
22 "Eventually the soldiers left and he and another survivor were
23 able to partially untie each other and escape the area, just as another
24 truck was arriving. The witness and his companion spent the night in a
25 concrete canal or ditch nearby while the killing continued. At daybreak,
1 they started to walk away and discovered that there was a dam above the
2 plateau where the killing had occurred. They were also able to see a
3 loader loading the bodies in the morning.
4 "The witness and his companion wandered for several days and were
5 eventually able to make it back to Muslim territory."
6 I'll go to the mistake that I said I would. That's the end of the
7 summary. To clear it up. It's at page 1423, line 10. Well I'll start a
8 little earlier to put it in context. This is the next day. The witness
9 says, "And when we climbed to the top of the hill, we saw that above the
10 plateau where all the killing went on. Above the plateau down the dam,
11 later on I saw it was a dam, on the other side of that dam, there was a
12 guard with a rifle and we couldn't go anywhere. We had to go down back to
13 the canal and across those dead."
14 Q. Now, Witness, did I just read the mistake that you pointed out to
16 A. Could you please repeat?
17 Q. Yeah. "And we couldn't go anywhere and we had to go down back to
18 the canal and across those dead. We had to go to another hill."
19 A. When we went to this ditch, we had to actually get to a hill to
20 see where we were. And then when we came back, we didn't step over the
21 dead because there were several levels on the dam so that we passed but we
22 didn't see the dead. There were dead bodies but we knew where they were
23 so we kind of passed around them and took the field, the meadow.
24 Q. Okay. And in your testimony, as I quoted, you said, "I wasn't
25 sure that UNPROFOR would protect us, certainly not the men, considering
1 all the experience in the war and knowing what the Serb army had been
2 doing." Can you briefly tell us of any experiences or incidents that
3 occurred during the war that you were referring to with this statement?
4 A. At the very beginning of the war, before we left our homes, we
5 heard that the serious -- the Serb army had committed serious crimes in
6 the villages of Bratunac, in Glogova, in the school that people were being
7 detained at the stadium in Bratunac. My uncle also lived in Bratunac so
8 we were worried about him. That they had started to expel and detain
9 people in Vlasenica and also another village Zagore near Vlasenica; it's
10 about 15 kilometres approximately away. The Serbs had killed 100 people.
11 They simply summoned them. I heard that from people who came later,
12 people who survived. They simply summoned them as if they had something
13 to tell them and then they killed them there. So this changed our view.
14 We really couldn't trust the Serbian army any more.
15 Secondly, when I was still in school in Kasaba, the Serb soldiers,
16 or the reservists who were on their way to Croatia, would pass through and
17 fire at Muslim houses, Muslim houses. They killed about 100 people in
18 Glogova and that actually changed our opinion, and people started to flee
19 to the woods. They didn't trust the Serbs any more. And then later, this
20 had an influence on our escape from Cerska and later when we were going to
21 Srebrenica, and also when I was making my decision whether to go to
22 Potocari or to go through the woods. I couldn't, in view of all of these
23 experiences and those of my neighbours who had stayed in these villages
24 and they are no longer here today, in 1992, 1993, I couldn't trust them.
25 So I decided to go through the woods because of these experiences and the
1 experiences with UNPROFOR, because the UNPROFOR actually danced to the
2 Serbs' tune, more or less.
3 Q. Okay. And can you, and very briefly, explain how you were
4 assisted from the killing fields by a companion? Of course, don't name
5 that person, but could you just very briefly tell us how you were helped
6 by this man and how you made it. But briefly.
7 A. I never believed I would survive. I was wounded, and I was in
8 pain, in a lot of pain. Just one moment, please. I was seriously wounded
9 and I was just waiting to die. I didn't even think that I could escape or
10 that I would go anywhere. While I was suffering and lying like that, I
11 could see a man moving around amongst the dead and I asked him if he was
12 alive and he said yes, and he called to me to come to untie him and I just
13 simply couldn't. This lasted for hours. And he couldn't move until I
14 came. I kind of rolled to reach him. I would roll once and then wait for
15 half an hour. And he didn't need to pull my ropes off with his teeth. It
16 was already loose. The soldier who tied my hands didn't tie them tightly.
17 And then we could see some vehicle approaching, a truck or
18 something, or a tractor. We could tell by the sound that something like
19 that was approaching. And it was dark. And he managed to stand up and to
20 go off while he was still tied and I also thought that I would go but I
21 was actually just crawling over the dead and then I lowered myself into
22 the ditch.
23 In the meantime a truck had arrived. The person had a T-shirt so
24 he dressed my wounds. We didn't even know each other. He dressed my
25 wounds. And then all I recall is that he called to me, "It's daylight.
1 We have to go." And then we wandered around for days, for days. We
2 didn't even think we could cross over. He was able to walk. We simply
3 went from one day to the next until we met a mine or a soldier or
4 something. He would go about ten metres in front of me and he was
5 removing the grass. I would be crawling, then I would want to give up,
6 then he would come to me and beg me and I said, "I can't go on. If you
7 want, you can leave me."
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey, please could you ask him whether he
9 needs a short break? Do you want to stop for a while?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There is no need. I just need a
11 moment. I don't need to go out. If I can just have a moment, please.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Certainly.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was so persistent, he would come
14 to me, he would beg me, "You have to go, you have to go" even though we
15 didn't know where we were going. We were just wandering around, wandering
16 through villages, Serb villages, sleeping. I was cold. I was half
17 dressed in bare feet. If we passed through a graveyard or something, he
18 would take the shirt off from the cross and give it to me to wear. I was
19 hungry, exhausted. He would carry me for a while. Then after four days
20 of wandering, we just incidentally crossed into a Muslim village. Only he
21 knows how much I suffered. I wouldn't wish that upon anyone. I wished to
22 die a thousand times. I wished that. I would have preferred for the
23 soldiers to have killed me but I just couldn't summon them -- I just kept
24 telling him, you go on, leave me. But he was so persistent and we did
25 manage to finally cross.
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: Could we go into private session for one second?
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's go into private session for a short while,
4 [Private session]
14 [Open session]
15 MR. McCLOSKEY:
16 Q. I want to go over some pictures, if we could just ask to you
17 identify these pictures. I know you've been shown them many times over
18 the years, but if we could start with 65 ter 1729. And do you recognise
19 this photo?
20 A. Yes, I do.
21 Q. Can you briefly tell us what it is?
22 A. This is the entrance in front of the school where we were brought
23 to in the truck from the direction of Bratunac. This school is close to
24 Zvornik. This is where we got off the trucks, and this is the school
25 where we were before they took us to the execution. This is the entrance
1 where the beatings took place, and where probably the killings took place
2 when we were in the classrooms. Later I saw piles of people, but I was
3 just walking, keeping my head down. I wasn't really thinking about
4 anything. They were my last moments. But this is the school.
5 Q. Okay. Let's go to the next shot, which is 65 ter 1730. What is
7 A. This is the inside of the school and these are the steps that we
8 took. This is where we were detained. We were on the first floor, and
9 you can see a part of the floor where we were. You can see the door
10 behind which we were being held.
11 Q. Let's go to the next shot, 65 ter 1731. What's this?
12 A. This is the floor of the school where we were detained. These are
13 the classrooms. I was in the last or the last but one. I'm not sure. I
14 was in either one of those. This is the hall where we were taken out
15 later when we were tied, where our clothes were removed.
16 Q. When you say the last, are you talking about the farthest away in
17 this picture as shot?
18 A. Yes. It's farther away. Perhaps you can't even see that door
20 Q. All right. Let's go to the next picture, 65 ter 1737. What's
22 A. This is actually the place where we were brought to in the truck,
23 and this is where the killings were done. This place where you can see
24 some people standing, that's where the truck was and where the killings
25 were committed. We fled below and into the woods that you can see right
1 there, and then the next day, after the execution, we were there and we
2 could see a guard walking up and down the dam with a rifle. We were
3 trying to see where we could go. Actually, my friend was looking where we
4 could go. I was just lying down.
5 Q. Okay. Let's go to the next shot, which is 65 ter 1739. What's
7 A. This is the concrete ditch into which I crawled after my friend
8 stood up and left. This is where we hid. And we left this ditch later
9 and from there we went into the woods.
10 Q. Okay. Let's go now to 65 ter 1908. These will be some -- just a
11 few photographs of some injuries. Is this an injury to your foot
12 sustained during the executions?
13 A. Yes. This is the wound on the sole of my foot when I was lying
14 down, when they were firing at the lines behind me and this hit me in the
15 foot when I was already lying down. This is probably fragmentation
16 ammunition. I still have metal fragments in my -- in the sole of my foot.
17 They still haven't been removed from that time. This photograph was taken
18 two or three months or even later after I was actually wounded. I'm not
19 sure when it was taken.
20 Q. Let's go to 65 ter 1910. What's this?
21 A. These are my wounds on my right side and also on my arm, on the
22 elbow, from the bullets that I was hit with. Perhaps they are not visible
23 but you can't really see them all that well, but this photograph was also
24 taken a few months after I was wounded. These were also probably
25 fragmentation bullets because I still have other places in my body where
1 the bullets passed through. I have a lot of fragments still in my stomach
2 and in my arm from those bullets.
3 Q. Okay. Thank you very much, Witness. I have no further questions.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. These two photos, 1908 and 1909 which
5 also have an ERN number, are they material of common domain? In other
6 words, if someone wants to look up these two photos -- maybe they are
7 accompanied by a description of who they refer to. If someone could help
8 me on that.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: They are in the Srebrenica-specific area of the
11 JUDGE AGIUS: But they wouldn't be accompanied by a description
12 indicating --
13 MR. McCLOSKEY: I don't -- I don't think so, no. Not in -- not
14 where they are stored, but I think there is -- our counsel have that but
15 no one else.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I feel safe, if that's the position.
17 All right.
18 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
19 JUDGE AGIUS: In any case, I'm told that they were not broadcast.
20 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, I don't know if there is a mistake in
21 the record.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't know either.
23 MR. MEEK: Mr. McCloskey referred to the last two photographs as
24 65 ter 1908 and 1910 and you referred to them as 1908 and 1909.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey is right. 1909 is also a photograph
1 of the injuries on the shoulder and chest of the witness. While 19 it
2 says "above but frontal view of injuries on chest." So I assume that it
3 was 1910 which was used and not 1909. I didn't check but I take it that
4 Mr. McCloskey knew what he was doing.
5 MR. McCLOSKEY: This is one of the times I did, yes, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. That's why I didn't check on you because
7 I felt it was like that.
8 Now we are coming to the cross-examination.
9 Who is going first? Mr. Zivanovic?
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: We shan't cross-examine this witness, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Mr. Zivanovic is lead counsel defending
12 accused Colonel Popovic in this case and he's chosen not to cross-examine
13 you. Who is next? Mr. Meek is representing Colonel Beara in this case
14 and he will be cross-examining you now.
15 Cross-examination by Mr. Meek:
16 Q. Good morning, Witness.
17 A. Good morning.
18 Q. I just have a few questions for you. You've testified before. We
19 know that. And you've given quite a few statements; is that correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. In the statement that you gave, several statements, you talked
22 about ambushes during the time that the column was moving from Susnjari to
23 the free territory. Do you recall that?
24 A. Yes, I do.
25 MR. MEEK: I apologise, Your Honours. This cord is not very long
1 for me, so I'm doing the best I can.
2 Q. It's a fact, isn't it, Witness, that you described the column that
3 was moving from Susnjari towards the free territory as at times members of
4 that column were committing suicide and even arguing with each other and
5 shooting and killing each other; is that correct?
6 A. No. It's not all correct. It's correct but I will explain to you
7 what is correct. In the statement it's all correct, yes, they were
8 arguing, killing each other, committing suicide, I don't know to what
9 extent, but actually the situation was so difficult and unbearable, so
10 the -- they couldn't stand it. That's the reason for the suicides. Many
11 of them had lost their minds. Some of them did not want to give
12 themselves up, and that was the reason for the suicides. The situation
13 was so unbearable that this is understandable. What you're saying about
14 them killing each other, there is a sentence there that says they started
15 to argue and kill each other. You could understand that in different
16 ways. Actually that they were killing themselves, not that they were
17 killing each other. That's, I think, a sufficient explanation.
18 Q. I can appreciate that, Witness. My next question is: Can you
19 give me an estimate as to the number of individuals in that column that
20 either died by suicide or died by being shot by a fellow Muslim that was
21 in that column?
22 A. I didn't understand the question, what you wanted to say. Could
23 you please just explain it a little bit?
24 Q. Yes. Thank you. I will. You've just testified that during the
25 column, the march towards the free territory, that you witnessed incidents
1 of suicide by people in the column. You also testified that --
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. -- you also witnessed incidents where individuals, because of the
4 intolerable situation and some wanting to surrender, some not, that they
5 shot each other, correct?
6 A. Can you please read those sentences from my statement, as they are
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, please do, if you are insisting pursuing this
9 matter, please.
10 MR. MEEK: I can insist, Your Honour, but he's already indicated,
11 and I can go back to his direct examination, his cross-examination, if you
12 give me just a moment.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Just -- I'm just appealing to you to make things
14 easy, Mr. Meek.
15 MR. MEEK: This would be a statement July 19th 1995. You
16 state, "I stayed in the woods with the others for one day and one night.
17 The Chetniks kept shelling the place with Pragas and other weapons." Then
18 you say, "That day, people started arguing and killing each other. Some
19 wanted to surrender and others did not." Do you remember that statement,
21 A. It says they were killing each other. Is that exactly what it
22 says, "killing each other"?
23 Q. That is verbatim from the English translation. I can have my
24 colleague who is fluent in B/C/S look at the B/C/S version?
25 A. Yes, you can. You mentioned Muslims killing each other, and I
1 don't remember ever having mentioned the word "Muslim" in my statement.
2 Q. You didn't, Witness. I'm just telling you, that in your statement
3 of the 19th of July, you were speaking of what transpired and what
4 occurred in the column that was moving from Susnjari to Tuzla. Okay?
5 A. I understand what you're saying and where you're coming from but
6 can you please read back to me the sentence as I said it, verbatim? You
7 don't have to explain things to me. Just read it back to me. Maybe you
8 can give it to me to read the sentence, just that sentence.
9 Q. I apologise. And, Mr. President, Your Honours, I would ask
10 permission of the Court to let my colleague, Mr. Mrkic read that sentence
11 in B/C/S and have it translated or I can show it to him. It's outlined.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's show it to the witness straight away.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Or maybe that passage, please, not
14 just witness sentence, maybe two or three sentences preceding it.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Does the statement have that paper itself --
16 MR. MEEK: This is highlighted, that's all, Judge.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Let's put it on the ELMO for everyone to be
18 able to read, but if it has the witness's name on it, then we go in
19 private session for one moment or make sure that it is not broadcast.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's not very legible, but I'll do
21 my best.
22 Can I start reading?
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, go ahead.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "On that day, people started
25 quarrelling amongst each other, and killing each other." I said that this
1 may be ambiguous but I'm here to explain things. I didn't see anybody
2 killing each other but some people committed suicide by hand grenades.
3 Maybe there were people wounded. But I never -- didn't see anybody
4 actually kill somebody else, and it doesn't say that people killed each
6 MR. MEEK:
7 Q. Witness, could you go ahead and read the next sentence so that we
8 can see if the translation is any different? Just read it out loud so the
9 translators can also then translate it into English.
10 A. "On that day, people started quarrelling amongst each other and
11 killing each other. Some wanted to surrender, the others didn't. At one
12 point, a column set off towards the village of Sandici and I joined the
13 column together with my uncle."
14 Q. Thank you.
15 A. Shall I go on reading?
16 Q. Now, you've read that out in your own language, B/C/S, your own
17 statement; correct?
18 A. Yes, that is correct.
19 Q. And in English, it came through that "on that day, people started
20 quarrelling amongst each other and killing each other."
21 JUDGE AGIUS: But he's given an explanation. He's explained it.
22 MR. MEEK: Okay. Thank you, Your Honours.
23 Q. How many people then -- you're saying they didn't kill each other,
24 they just committed suicide, is that what --
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think we should labour it and belabour it.
1 He said that he saw several or some people committing suicide using hand
2 grenades and, in the process, some others may have been injured or even
3 killed, but he did not see anyone specifically killing someone else.
4 MR. MEEK: Fair enough, Your Honour, fair enough. I'll move on.
5 Q. Witness, approximately how many people did you see die in that
6 manner during those days?
7 A. In what manner? By people committing suicide or in the way that
8 you want me to say that they were killing each other? What do you mean
9 when you say "by that manner"? Are you referring to hand grenades? What?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Witness, I suggest to you, unless you really want a
11 head-on collision with some members of the Defence teams, that you try to
12 cooperate with us. Mr. Meek here has got every right to ask questions,
13 and you have a responsibility also pursuant to the solemn declaration that
14 you made earlier on, you have a responsibility and an obligation, a legal
15 obligation, as well as a moral one, to answer his questions. So please
16 don't try to enter into an argumentation with Mr. Meek or, for that
17 matter, anyone else that will be asking you questions.
18 If you want to distinguish between those who according to you
19 committed suicide and those who were injured by the grenades used by
20 others in committing suicide, you are entitled to do so, but please don't
21 argue with counsel.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not arguing. He can ask me
23 whatever he wants. I'm trying to answer his questions. And I have
24 already answered his question, and I said that I had seen several people
25 who committed suicide. And that is my answer.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: But do you have a number, an approximate number?
2 This is what he's asking you.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no. I wouldn't be able to tell
4 you that.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Meek.
6 MR. MEEK: Okay. Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. Now, Witness -- and, certainly, I'm not here to argue with you by
8 any means. In your various statements, you testified that while the
9 column was moving from Susnjari towards the free territory, that there
10 were ambushes that had occurred; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, it is.
12 Q. And could you just tell me to the best of your ability how you
13 would define an ambush?
14 A. I can't define an ambush, but I can tell you how it was so you can
15 draw your own definition, if you will. There were a lot of people, and
16 the column was long, and I was towards its end with the majority of
17 civilians. On day 1, there was no shooting, no shelling and as we were
18 walking through the forest, all of a sudden shelling started, and this was
19 very hard to bear. There was shooting from different types of weaponry, a
20 lot of people were wounded. Nobody helped each other because we just
21 couldn't. And all of a sudden the column came to a halt. It could not go
22 on moving because there was an ambush ahead of us and the Serb army had
23 cut off the column and we could not go any further. And that was that.
24 Q. Okay. Thank you. Witness, there has been testimony in this
25 courtroom that there was -- there were men with weapons in that column,
1 some testimony even indicating maybe a third of the men had weapons of
2 some sort, hunting rifles, deer rifles, shot guns, hand guns and grenades.
3 Further, there has been evidence in this courtroom, that some of the armed
4 men were in the front of the column and some armed men were towards the
5 rear of the column. Now, since you just testified that you were towards
6 the rear of the column or the end of the column, were there men from the
7 ABiH army, whether they were in civilian clothes or not, who had weapons?
8 A. As we were entering the forest, in my group or in my part of the
9 column, which was huge - I don't know how many kilometres long - most
10 people with me were civilians because the army would not let us go in the
11 front of the column. They wanted us to go in the rear of the column. And
12 I only saw a few troops there. As we entered the forest, confusion
13 started. There were a lot of dead and wounded and the whole thing broke
14 apart and I did see a soldier here and there, but very few of them. Most
15 of the soldiers went ahead of the column, so it may be the case that the
16 Serbs did it on purpose to let the military through and then stop the
17 civilians or as they called us, unarmed soldiers.
18 Q. Thank you. Witness, you just testified that as you entered the
19 forest you saw a lot of dead and wounded. Can you give the Court an
20 estimate of how many dead that you observed?
21 A. When the shelling started, when the general attack started,
22 according to my estimate, the column was cut off and it's very difficult
23 for me to estimate. I don't know who would be able to give you an
24 estimate, but I believe that some 300 to 500 people, maybe less, maybe
25 more, but approximately that many. As I was walking through the forest,
1 as I was fleeing, jumping over dead bodies, I would say that that is as
2 many as I saw but this is only my estimate. There was a lot of wounded
3 and the number of wounded, maybe even surpassed the number of those who
4 were not wounded and I'm talking only about my part of the column and to
5 what I saw was happening around me.
6 Q. And as you went through the forest, some of the dead or wounded
7 that you observed would have been dead or been wounded previous to that,
8 by further up in the column and stayed where they were, correct?
9 A. I'm afraid I didn't understand your question fully. Are you
10 asking me whether all the wounded remained there or --
11 Q. No. Let me rephrase the question. As far as some of the dead
12 that you observed along the route that you took, you didn't observe all of
13 them being killed while in your presence, but they were there when you
14 went by them. Am I correct about that?
15 A. As I was passing through, I could see shell shrapnel. On some
16 bodies I couldn't even discern wounds but they were dead. Some people
17 lost their legs or arms. There was such a state of confusion, and it
18 happened so fast that nobody actually paid much attention to anybody else.
19 Fathers would leave their wounded sons behind as a result of this
20 unbearable state of confusion and panic. And the shelling was so intense
21 that it could not be borne any more. The Serbs just wanted to kill us all
22 and we had a choice either to surrender or they would have killed us all.
23 Q. And again, that choice to surrender or not caused some arguments
24 and some people in that column died because of those arguments; correct?
25 A. People argued as to whether to surrender or not. Those who wanted
1 could surrender. Those who didn't want could only flee somewhere or if
2 they had a hand grenade or a piece of weaponry they could kill themselves,
3 but those people were rare. Some of the soldiers who were left behind
4 fled. I saw some people in the forest, even those who did not bear arms,
5 who did not want to continue with the convoy, they just surrendered. It's
6 as simple as that.
7 Q. Thank you. I want to ask you, sir, about the school, and on the
8 31st day of July of 1995, you gave a statement in Tuzla, and on the
9 statement, you state, that later on you were transported and then you
10 say, "I saw under the canvass that they had brought us to a school in
11 Petkovici." Do you remember making that statement?
12 A. Yes, I do.
13 Q. Okay. Is that true?
14 A. It is true, but I think I can guess what you're trying to ask me.
15 Q. Well, I'm going to ask you because on the 24th day of July 1995, a
16 week earlier than that, you made a statement about the Petkovici school
17 where you stated that you "later learned the school was in Petkovici." Do
18 you remember that?
19 A. What was said in this other statement?
20 Q. That you "later learned the school was in Petkovici."
21 A. Yes. Before that, I did not even know that that was a school. It
22 was only when we entered that we saw school boards and similar things by
23 which I could tell that this was a school. I didn't know what the name of
24 the school was. Later on I heard from people either there or as we were
25 walking through the village, that this was a school -- the school in
1 Petkovci. That is why I provided that in my statement. I said that I was
2 in the school in Petkovci. This is the only explanation I can give you.
3 Q. And, Witness, you had a proofing session in 2003 prior to your
4 testimony, before testimony in Blagojevic case. You recall that, sir?
5 A. What proofing session are you referring to?
6 Q. Well, let me ask you. Before your testimony today, did you meet
7 with Mr. McCloskey and go over previous statements, previous testimony,
8 and what your testimony would be today? That's what I mean by a proofing
10 A. Yes, yes.
11 Q. And do you recall doing that on the 20th of July 2003, with an
12 investigator from the ICTY, from the Office of the Prosecutor, before you
13 testified in 2003?
14 A. I suppose I did but I can't remember.
15 Q. Well, let me just try to refresh your recollection. You told that
16 investigator that there was a mistake on the statement dated 19 July 1995,
17 which you gave to the officer of the BiH army, the organ of military
18 security service. You stated that in page 2 of that statement, it had
19 been written, "A total of about 600 of us surrendered." I believe that
20 you told that investigator on July 20, 2003, that you never said those
21 words, that it was probably added by the officer who had interviewed you
22 and since today you had never seen this statement and had had no
23 possibility to correct it. Does that refresh your recollection?
24 A. I may have said it but I can't remember, so I can't answer your
25 question, I'm afraid.
1 Q. Can you answer --
2 A. I can't answer it.
3 Q. That's fair. Can you tell me approximately how many surrendered
4 when you did, if not 600, if you remember?
5 A. It's very difficult to assess, given the length of the column, the
6 large number of wounded, the forest. If you were to observe the situation
7 from an aircraft or a helicopter, then you could tell. I can only tell
8 you how many I saw in the meadow or on the asphalt road, and this is what
9 I can base my estimates on. And it was a long time ago. I can tell you
10 how many of us there were in total. There were some 1.000 to 2.000 on the
11 asphalt and in the meadow, later on, when we were running but that doesn't
12 have to mean that we all came at the same time. It does not have to mean
13 that we all surrendered at the same time, that everybody surrendered
14 together with us. Bear in mind that the column was really long. So there
15 may have been people preceding us in that.
16 Q. Yes. I understand that, Witness. I just want to know if a total
17 of 600 of us surrendered in your group or close to the time you did, is
18 not a correct number, what is a correct number? If you can tell us today,
19 that you saw and observed surrendering when you did.
20 A. I've just answered that question, didn't I?
21 Q. All right. I'll move on. I just want to know, didn't you have
22 orders from the army command, and that's why you went with your father and
23 other able-bodied men to Susnjari?
24 A. I believe that I said enough at the beginning. I didn't opt for
25 the UNPROFOR. I knew that we couldn't be safe there. My cousins, who
1 were able-bodied and who were not able-bodied went to Potocari and are no
2 longer with us. They were killed. In other words, they knew that they
3 would be killed either if they went to Potocari or through the forest. I
4 just made an attempt through the forest hoping that I would survive. I am
5 amongst the living today but I suffered greatly, and please let me
6 answer -- let me complete my answer. It if you don't allow me to complete
7 my answer, I don't think I can continue.
8 MR. MEEK: Your Honour, he's not answering. He's being-- I asked
9 him a specific question, whether or not, you know, there was a command
10 from the army for able-bodied people to go to Susnjari and he's not
11 answering that question. He's being unresponsive.
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: It was a compound question which has got us into
13 that trouble and I didn't object.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: I suggest that we have the break now, straight away.
15 We'll give the witness a break.
16 In the meantime think about what I'm going to suggest to you, sir.
17 You really want to get this over and done with, finished with your
18 testimony. Please try to restrict your answer to what you are being
19 asked. Answer the question, the whole question and nothing but the
20 question. Don't volunteer more information because that can only prolong
21 your testimony here, and I think it's in your interest to get out of this
22 courtroom the sooner the better. So we'll have a 25 -- or we'll have a
23 30-minute break starting from now. Thank you.
24 I think the witness would like to leave the courtroom first.
25 Thank you. 30 minutes.
1 --- Recess taken at 12.29 p.m.
2 [The witness stands down]
3 --- On resuming at 1.02 p.m.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: The witness, we are waiting for him. Do we have
5 much longer, Mr. Meek?
6 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, I do not. I know you're glad to hear
7 that. I was going to let you know that I am not going to question this
8 witness any further regarding the last issue, which was whether or not
9 there was an ABiH command that all the men go to Susnjari. Another
10 colleague is going to cover that. I just have a few questions about
11 ambushes and then I'm finished.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
13 [The witness entered court]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Meek? It's okay. You can start. It only
15 makes a little bit of a noise.
16 MR. MEEK: Okay. Thank you, Your Honour.
17 Q. Witness, I would just like to ask you a few questions about the
18 ambushes and then I'll be finished. In your statement of the 19th of July
19 1995, you indicated that when you reached the village of Babuljica there
20 was an ambush and then later on when you were in the woods in a place
21 called Kamenica, there was also an ambush; correct?
22 A. There was no ambush in the village of Babuljica. I don't recall
23 saying there was an ambush. There was shelling from different weapons of
24 the Serbs but there was no ambush there. There were wounded people.
25 Q. Thank you very much. Then can you just tell me approximately from
1 the time you left Susnjari with the column, how many ambushes you were
2 involved in?
3 A. It was such a large number of people, it could have been a hundred
4 ambushes and it could have been none. I told you earlier how the column
5 proceeded and what happened. What happened, I already told you. I don't
6 know about the number of ambushes. I don't know that.
7 Q. Okay.
8 A. The column was simply cut. The soldiers continued on and the
9 majority of the civilians were left behind. That's how it was.
10 Q. So then would it be a fair statement, Witness, that you cannot
11 give us any number of ambushes you were involved in except the one?
12 A. I think that it is so complicated, and if I were to talk to you
13 for days you would never understand it. You simply don't understand the
14 situation, the chaos that was reigning, the confusion. You will not
15 understand even if I were to explain it to you for days. As for you
16 asking me to tell you how many ambushes there were, I've already told you
17 what happened. I cannot say how many there were. I don't even understand
18 what you're talking about.
19 Q. And, Witness, I appreciate that and that's one of the reasons I
20 was asking, but would it be a fair statement, then, that during the course
21 of your trek with the column, that it was fairly non-stop shelling and
22 shooting going on during that period of time?
23 A. I've told you before, we came to Susnjari, which is where the main
24 column started off from. There was a lot of shooting from Serb weapons,
25 probably they were Serb weapons, the shooting didn't come from Mars.
1 There were multiple rocket launchers. The fire was also coming from
2 Serbia, from across the River Drina, from Bratunac, and they said before
3 there were these VBRs and this is where they were shelling Srebrenica from
4 in 1993. And people, as we were walking, were saying, "That's where the
5 VBR is firing from." People were wounded. After the column was formed in
6 the evening, it was quiet, there was no firing, but after the column
7 entered the woods, then you could hear the shells, the shelling began, and
8 then general chaos broke out.
9 Q. Thank you, Witness. And that actually, the very last sentence of
10 your answer, once the column started into the woods, would it be a fair
11 statement that it was non-stop shelling and shooting from the Serb army
12 and not Mars? Really, yes or no. If you can answer that yes or no, I
13 would appreciate it. It's last question I have.
14 A. The question is very long. Could you please repeat it?
15 Q. Okay. I'll try. Once the column started into the woods, once you
16 formed up and entered the woods, was the shelling and the shelling began,
17 and general chaos broke out, did the shelling continue non-stop until you
19 A. I think that I explained but I will try to explain again. There
20 was a large number of people, about 15.000. I don't know how many
21 kilometres the column stretched for, perhaps ten kilometres. People were
22 not walking right next to each other. Maybe they were five metres away
23 from each other. So I can only talk about the section of the column that
24 I was in. I don't know whether the beginning of the column was also
25 shelled. I think I explained it all very clearly. When there was
1 shelling, when it began, it went on the whole day and the night until we
2 began to surrender, the entire day and the night.
3 Q. Thank you, Witness. I have no further questions.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Meek. Who is next? Madam Nikolic
5 who is representing Lieutenant Nikolic will be cross-examining you.
6 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Cross-examination by Ms. Nikolic:
8 Q. Good afternoon, sir.
9 A. Good afternoon.
10 Q. I would like to put a number of questions to you. If you could
11 help me to understand some of the events that you lived through. I would
12 like to go back to the 11th of July, 1995.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. When the command of the B and H army issued the order to separate
15 men from women and when it established which group would take which route.
16 This took place on the 11th, in the evening, the 11th of July 1995; is
17 that correct?
18 A. I can tell you that -- actually, we heard from people that there
19 was this order or that the command of the B and H army ordered that.
20 Nobody else could have done that, for the able-bodied men to go towards
21 Tuzla through the woods and the civilians should go to Potocari. It
22 wasn't anything strict. This is my answer. I really don't recall more
23 than that.
24 Q. All right. Very well. So the order said that they should
25 assemble at Susnjari and then after that to go on.
1 A. Somebody ordered that, or perhaps it was the B and H army. I
2 don't remember details. There were many people. This is my answer. I
3 don't know any more.
4 Q. You were not in the army?
5 A. No, I wasn't.
6 Q. But your father was; isn't that correct?
7 A. I'm going to tell you about that. My father was in the army, was
8 a member of the army, formally. After Cerska and Konjevic Polje fell, I
9 think he did belong to some unit there, I don't remember the number or
10 anything like that. After arriving to Srebrenica, I think that he wasn't
11 really active or anything like that. I haven't finished. I haven't
13 Q. All right. Go ahead. Continue, please.
14 A. After coming to Srebrenica, I think that he wasn't active because
15 I know that my father didn't go anywhere, he never had a weapon, he didn't
16 have a uniform. So throughout 1993 and 1995, during the Serb attacks, he
17 did not go anywhere. He was with his family the entire time. So if he
18 was a soldier, he was with us all the time. So it was more a formal
19 thing. I think that's it.
20 Q. Thank you very much for your detailed answer.
21 I would now like to ask you to explain -- now I would like to go
22 back to the 14th of July 1995 now, when you set off in a convoy in a truck
23 towards the location that you later recognised and identified as Petkovci.
24 This was on the 14th of July 1995 in the afternoon?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. You came in front of the building that you recognised today in the
2 courtroom. You went to the first floor. You were -- you entered the
3 classrooms in groups; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Can you please tell me how many people were in each group, in the
7 A. I cannot really tell you anything about the other classrooms. I
8 can tell you about my own, when we were climbing up the stairs, as we were
9 going in, you could hear noise from the other classrooms, the murmur of
10 people. You could hear that there were people in there. I was put in the
11 last or the one but last classroom as you went along the corridor. I'm
12 not sure which one it was. So I can tell you approximately how many
13 people there were in my classroom. I know that there were more people
14 than in the truck. Perhaps there were 200 people but it's just an
15 estimate. Nobody was counting.
16 Q. When you came to the liberated territory, the territory under the
17 control of the B and H army, you met with officers from the 2nd Corps
18 security service on the 20th of July 1995. They were from the army of
20 A. I don't know if it was the 19th or the 20th. I'm not sure about
21 the date. It was after I crossed and after I was admitted to hospital,
22 after my wounds were dressed, after I received my injection. So it was
23 either on the 19th or the 20th. I cannot remember.
24 Q. I'm not insisting on the date. But I would just like to show you
25 your statement so then we can look at what you said there.
1 A. Very well.
2 Q. Can we now look at e-court document and --
3 THE INTERPRETER: It was too fast. The interpreter did not catch
4 the number.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Can you repeat the number.
6 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] I apologise. It was 4D00050. There
7 is no signature by the witness on this document, so I think that there
8 will be no problems with the document.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: We'll see it first in any case. For the time being,
10 please no broadcast of this document until we give clearance.
11 What's the problem?
12 One moment, let me have a look at it first on my --
13 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the English version,
14 it's on page 2, paragraph 4.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm looking at the English version, as you can
16 imagine. I suggest we see it in private session.
17 [Private session]
11 Pages 3361-3362 redacted. Private session.
2 [Open session]
3 JUDGE AGIUS: For the record, Madam Nikolic for accused Nikolic
4 has finished her cross-examination while we were in private session. It's
5 now the turn of Mr. Stojanovic, who is appearing for accused Borovcanin to
6 proceed with his cross-examination. And we'll stop at quarter to 2.00 as
7 usual, Mr. Stojanovic, hoping that you will be finished by then.
8 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours. I
9 believe that we will.
10 Cross-examination by Mr. Stojanovic:
11 Q. Sir, good afternoon.
12 A. Good afternoon.
13 Q. Listening to your testimony today, you said at one point that
14 there was a group of soldiers of the B and H army at the back of the
15 column too. Do you recall saying that?
16 A. Yes, I do.
17 Q. At one point in time, the group of soldiers passed by the column,
18 leaving the civilians behind?
19 A. Yes, when the shelling started, when the column stopped, those
20 people simply passed by, and we, the civilians, couldn't move ahead, so
21 the column simply stopped. We couldn't go any further. That's the
23 Q. Can you please tell us whether this was on the 12th or the 13th of
25 A. It was on the 12th of July.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Stojanovic and Witness, please slow down a
2 little bit. You're moving too fast. The interpreters need a very short
3 pause between question and answer, the reason being that you both speak
4 the same language, and they have to interpret into English and French.
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
6 Q. Are you familiar with the name Ejub Golic?
7 A. Yes, it does ring a bell.
8 Q. Did you see that person in the column?
9 A. I heard of the name in Srebrenica, and later on, after I went
10 over, I heard that he was either a soldier or something. I heard of the
11 person. The name does ring a bell.
12 Q. The group of soldiers at the rear of the column, how strong it
13 was, how many men were there in that group?
14 A. I've already explained that, not to you but to your colleague. It
15 was not a hundred men, it was not 50 men, it was not 200 men. The number
16 was great so I can't tell you how many there were. I don't know if there
17 is a person alive who could tell you how many there were, especially of
18 those who were at the rear carrying arms.
19 Q. The ambush that you spoke about and the number of dead that you
20 mentioned, did all that happen on the 12th or the 13th of July?
21 A. This happened on the 12th of July, in the evening, and during that
22 night, all the way up to the early morning hours of the 13th, and on the
23 13th we all surrendered. We spent that previous night in the forest.
24 Q. On the 13th, in the afternoon, you went to the asphalt road and
25 you surrendered by a bridge?
1 A. Yes, in the village of Kamenica we surrendered sometime in the
3 Q. You mentioned the bridge by which you surrendered, do you
5 A. Yes, of course, I do remember.
6 Q. Before you came to the asphalt road, did you have to go across the
7 Kravica river?
8 A. The village of Kamenica is the village that I visited during the
9 war. It was a Muslim village and the bridge is over a river or a stream
10 but I don't know the name of that stream, whether it's the Kravica stream
11 or something else. In any case, we did not cross any streams. We came
12 from the forest, we crossed the road, and I don't know whether we crossed
13 the bridge or not. I can't remember whether we crossed any river but I
14 certainly do not remember that we had to get into the water and cross by
15 tempering our feet in the water.
16 Q. Were you instructed to follow the transmission line when you set
17 out with the column?
18 A. I don't know what transmission line are you referring to. We did
19 not have any instruction from anybody, so I don't know what transmission
20 line are you referring to. I can't remember any transmission line. I can
21 only tell you that there are some transmission lines from Tuzla to
22 Visegrad in our neck of the woods, but I don't know whether those
23 transmission lines are anywhere near to the place through which I passed.
24 That would be my answer.
25 Q. How many soldiers were there when you came to that asphalt road
1 and when you surrendered?
2 A. I believe that you've asked me that already. But I am going to
3 tell you again. In the forest, when people decided to surrender, the
4 column was moving.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you mean to ask him how many Serb soldiers or how
6 many Muslim soldiers? Because he's understood you to be referring to
7 Muslim soldiers, while I understood you to be referring to Serb soldiers.
8 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] This is precisely the case.
9 Q. I did not want to interrupt you and I understand what you are
10 talking about. But my question was: How many soldiers of the VRS were
11 there on the road where you surrendered by the bridge?
12 A. I'm sorry, I didn't understand your question.
13 Q. But just make a short break.
14 A. I don't know how many there were. Compared to the number of us
15 who were captured, and who surrendered there, their -- their number was
16 insignificant in comparison with our number, and I'm referring to that
17 particular place. I can't tell you how many there were.
18 Q. If we are to use your previous statements, would it be fair to say
19 that there were five or six of them?
20 A. Yes. There were five or six of them on the bridge, but there were
21 more of them lined up in front of the column. But, yes, there were some
22 four, five or six on the bridge, but the road was very close to the
23 bridge, some ten metres away from it.
24 Q. And how many of you surrendered there before they ordered you to
25 start moving on the road towards Bratunac? You've already mentioned a
1 number of 600, a thousand to 2.000. Let me put it this way: In that
2 place, by the bridge, before you set out to Bratunac, how many of you
3 surrendered? How many detainees were there in total?
4 A. I can tell you what I can remember. The total number --
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey?
6 MR. McCLOSKEY: We have been over that.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, we have been all over this. It has been asked
8 and answered or have answered but that was, I think, exhaustively dealt
9 with. So next area of questions, please.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. After that you were ordered to go on walking for two or three
12 kilometres to Kravica with your hands up in the air. Is that correct?
13 A. Yes, but this applied only to those who did not carry the wounded.
14 We had to run towards Kravica because the buses could not pass us by, and
15 we were running in couples, holding with our arms up in the air, with
16 three fingers up in the air and the others were carrying the wounded and
17 we took turns carrying the wounded.
18 Q. When you stopped in that opening, in that meadow, an officer
19 approached you and addressed you. Do you remember that?
20 A. Yes. When we sat down in the meadow, there were a lot of us
21 there. I was somewhere in the middle. He was standing in front of a tank
22 and he started talking to us. I don't know whether he was an officer but
23 he did have an appearance of an officer.
24 Q. And he wore a bandana on his head. That's what you said?
25 A. Yes, he did.
1 Q. How did he wear this bandana, tied around his forehead?
2 A. It was a black bandana which was tied somewhere in the back of his
3 head, as far as I can remember.
4 Q. And he told you that he was from Serbia, didn't he?
5 A. Yes. He said that he was from Serbia and then he started
6 delivering a speech of some sort as to what we should do, what we were
7 supposed to do, where we would be taken, what we would get, what we
8 wouldn't get, whether we would be exchanged or not.
9 Q. Did he tell you that you would be transported to some hangars in
10 Bratunac and that from there you would be taken to be exchanged amongst
11 other things?
12 A. Yes. He did say that amongst other things, but before that, we
13 were there for two or three hours and we had to listen to some other
14 slogans and shout out some slogans ourselves, like, "Long live Serbia.
15 Long live the king." Some people were killed there. He told us that we
16 would be taken to a hangar in Bratunac but that we wouldn't get any
17 supper. But I'm sure that he must have known what would happen there to
19 Q. Could you please answer my questions only because we want to bring
20 your testimony to an end. At one point, lorries arrived; isn't that
22 A. Yes, it is.
23 Q. Did these lorries arrive from the direction of Bratunac or did
24 they arrive from the direction of Konjevic Polje?
25 A. They came from the direction of Konjevic Polje.
1 Q. And the person who might have been an officer, did he stop the
2 lorries in order for you to get on?
3 A. I don't know. I can't remember. I didn't see that. I don't know
4 why he would have to stop them. I believe that it was their intention to
5 come and pick us up. They were not just passing by.
6 Q. You say that you entered a special lorry?
7 A. Yes. I believe that it was the last because there was a Golf
8 police vehicle that followed us.
9 Q. When you mentioned that police Golf, was that a blue vehicle?
10 A. I believe that in my statement I explained it well. The Golf
11 where we surrendered was blue. There was a civilian Golf and a police
12 Golf and I believe that that same Golf was following the convoy. It may
13 not have been the case. I don't know.
14 Q. Could you see anything over the sides of the lorry in which you
15 were loaded?
16 A. The lorries were covered in tarpaulins save for the back of it
17 through which we climbed the lorries. On that day they were covered only
18 partially, and on the following day, they were completely covered in
19 tarpaulins, even the back of the lorries.
20 Q. How late was it when you set out towards Bratunac?
21 A. I don't know exactly, but it was sometime in the afternoon, maybe
22 five or 6.00 in the afternoon, at dusk. I believe that it was already
23 dark when we arrived there. I don't know how long it took us to get to
25 Q. On the uniforms of the soldiers who were there, did you see any
2 A. There may have been insignia but I didn't see them. I was so
3 depressed that I was not interested in a thing. We were just sitting down
4 and I can't remember anything else. I can't remember whether there were
5 any insignia or not.
6 Q. Do you remember what time of day it was when you passed through
7 Kravica, when you went towards Bratunac?
8 A. There were so many people on the lorries and lorries were covered
9 that I could not see the route that we took. They told us that we were
10 being taken towards Bratunac but I didn't know where we were going. There
11 were so many people. I was somewhere in the middle of the lorry and it
12 was not possible for me to see anything.
13 Q. Did you spend any time in Kravica at all?
14 A. I can't remember. As far as I remember, we didn't. We just
15 stopped in Bratunac.
16 Q. Through the back of the lorry in which you were, could you see the
17 road that you were moving on?
18 A. I told you that this was the longest lorry that exists. It did
19 not have a trailer but it was very long and I was sitting somewhere in the
20 middle and there were so many of us that I couldn't see a thing. Save for
21 at the moment, as I was getting on to the lorry, I saw that Golf. Later
22 on, I didn't see it. I didn't know what route we took. When we arrived
23 in Bratunac, I saw lights in the buildings, that's how I suppose that we
24 had arrived in Bratunac, but that's all I can tell you. I didn't see
25 anything else.
1 Q. You arrived in Bratunac in the evening, when the lights were
2 already lit?
3 A. Yes. I would say so. At that time, the lights were lit and later
4 on I saw the lights again. We stopped in the vicinity of some buildings.
5 I don't know.
6 Q. How long was the journey, in your estimate, from the moment you
7 boarded the lorries to Bratunac?
8 A. I can't -- I don't know. I can't tell you.
9 Q. Thank you very much. I have no further questions for this
11 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you so much, Mr. Stojanovic. Who is next?
12 Mr. Krgovic is appearing here as defending General Gvero and he will be
13 starting his cross-examination today.
14 Cross-examination by Mr. Krgovic:
15 Q. Good afternoon, sir. I'm going to ask you questions so as to
16 enable to you answer by just yes or no. I would kindly ask you to make a
17 short pause before answering my questions in order to allow the
18 interpreters to interpret your words correctly and in order to avoid
20 A. Maybe I'll have to explain things, not just say yes or no.
21 Q. Let me ask you something about the events that took place on the
22 6th of July 1995. On the day when the attack on Srebrenica started. On
23 the 6th of July you resided in Slapovici in the Swedish settlement; isn't
24 that correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. On that day, the attack started on the units that were close to
2 Slapovici and also on the area of Srebrenica, and I'm referring to the BH
3 army units?
4 A. I have to say that I can't answer just by saying yes or no. From
5 that settlement, you could see that hilltops where the UNPROFOR was and
6 the BIH army units if there were any there. I believe that that's what I
7 stated in my statement. And one could see the explosions and you could
8 hear shell noise coming from the shells fired by the Serbs, and we were
9 somewhere between those lines, between the Serbs and the UNPROFOR, and
10 that's why we were able to both see and hear everything.
11 Q. So BiH army units were there in the vicinity?
12 A. I didn't see them. I just say that they might have been there
13 together with UNPROFOR. The UNPROFOR units were not that close but I told
14 you the name of the hill where the UNPROFOR was and where BiH army units
15 might have been.
16 Q. -- 00046. Both versions, B/C/S and English version. Exhibit
17 4D00046. Do you have this version in front of you?
18 A. I can't read it. It's absolutely illegible.
19 Q. I could kindly ask the technical service to blow up the beginning
20 of this document, if possible. I'm going to read this to you and you can
21 try and follow.
22 A. Again, this is illegible. I can't read. Maybe you could provide
23 me with the original hard copy. Maybe I'll be able to follow then.
24 MR. KRGOVIC: Can we go to the private session?
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly, we can go into private session. And
1 we have only got two minutes left in any case.
2 [Private session]
4 [Open session]
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Witness, we have to finish -- we have to stop here
6 because another Trial Chamber will continue with another case at 2.15. So
7 we'll continue with you tomorrow morning. In the meantime, usher, please
8 just make sure there is nobody in the strangers' gallery or public
10 And I think you can escort the witness out. They have left any
12 So that's it. Do I take it that you will be able to conclude the
13 cross-examinations tomorrow, Madam Fauveau and Mr. Haynes? And Mr.
14 Krgovic of course?
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Yes, certainly, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Haynes?
17 MR. HAYNES: Of course, yes.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: So your next witness is 54, isn't he?
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. So be prepared for 54, Witness 54
21 tomorrow morning. I wish you a nice afternoon and evening and see you all
22 tomorrow morning at 9.00.
23 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.47 p.m.,
24 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 1st day of
25 November, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.