1 Thursday, 22 February 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, Madam Registrar. Could you
7 kindly call the case, please.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
9 IT-05-88-T, the Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic et al.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you so much, ma'am. All the accused are
11 here. Same for the Defence teams. Prosecution is Mr. McCloskey,
12 Mr. Nicholls, and Mr. Thayer.
13 Witness number 101, PW-101 is present in the courtroom. Are there
14 any preliminaries? I take it that there are none, so I can proceed with
15 the witness.
16 Good morning to you, sir.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: And I wish to welcome you to this Tribunal and to
19 this case in particular where you are giving evidence. Madam Usher is
20 going to hand you the text of a solemn declaration, promising that you
21 will -- undertaking that you will be testifying the truth. Please stand
22 up, read it out aloud, and that will be your solemn undertaking with us.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
24 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
25 WITNESS: WITNESS PW-101
1 [Witness answered through interpreter]
2 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, sir. Please make yourself comfortable
3 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
4 JUDGE AGIUS: So before you start giving evidence and you will be
5 asked questions first by Mr. Nicholls, I wanted to confirm with you that
6 we have put in place for you two protective measures; namely, the use of a
7 pseudonym and also facial distortion. I just wanted to make sure that
8 these are to your satisfaction. Mr. Nicholls will go first, who will then
9 be followed by the Defence teams on cross-examination.
10 Mr. Nicholls.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: Good morning and thank you, Your Honours. If I
12 could first hand the witness the pseudonym sheet.
13 Examination by Mr. Nicholls:
14 Q. Sir, I want you to read that quietly to yourself, not out loud,
15 and just tell me, is your name printed on that sheet of paper which will
16 be P02448 under seal.
17 A. Yes.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Could that be shown to my colleagues, please. And
19 Your Honours, could we please go into private session for some background
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Certainly. Let's go into private session, please.
22 [Private session]
11 Pages 7549-7550 redacted. Private session
2 [Open session]
3 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session now.
4 MR. NICHOLLS:
5 Q. All right. I now want you to focus your attention on the period
6 of July 1995, and do you recall the date of the fall of Srebrenica?
7 A. To tell you the truth, ever since I established contact with you,
8 I guess because of everything I have experienced, I developed some kind of
9 an antagonism towards that date. I had to learn that date as a parrot
10 because I simply had to know that it was around the 11th, 12th, 13th,
11 14th, and 15th, those days. Now, as to what date it was involving me, I
12 think that this was two or three days after Srebrenica was done.
13 Q. Okay. You're moving a little bit ahead. I was just asking you
14 now if you remember the date; and if I'm right, you don't remember the
15 exact date, is that what you're saying, that Srebrenica fell?
16 A. I've just told you. When Srebrenica fell, what happened, where I
17 was a participant, took place two or three days or maybe two days after
18 the day Srebrenica fell or was liberated, depending on how people term it.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Let's go into private session for a
20 short while, please.
21 [Private session]
11 Pages 7552-7553 redacted. Private session
2 [Open session]
3 JUDGE AGIUS: So, witness, let me explain to you a legal matter
4 that arises out of the debate that we've had in private session, and also
5 in the wake of a particular rule of evidence that we have. I would
6 imagine that you may be asked questions which, upon answering, there could
7 be the possibility of you incriminating yourself. If that is the case, I
8 don't know if that will be the case or not, if that is the case, according
9 to a particular rule of evidence that we have, you may ask to be exempted
10 from answering such questions.
11 However, the right to ask for such an exemption does not entitle
12 you to an automatic exemption. In other words, the Trial Chamber, us, the
13 four Judges up here, we can, after hearing what you have to say, compel
14 you to answer the question or questions that may be.
15 However, there is a legal guarantee that is provided for in the
16 rule in your favour in such a case, if we compel to answer such
17 incriminatory questions; that testimony compelled in the way, in this way,
18 in other words when we force you to answer the question, shall not be used
19 as evidence in any subsequent proceedings against you for any offence,
20 except if you are charged with false testimony, with perjury. Do you
21 understand me? Do you need --
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm trying to understand.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. But as we go along, if this becomes too
24 difficult for you to understand, and you need further clarifications from
25 us, we have got all the time to explain these things, your rights in
1 particular to you. You have not been treated as a suspect by the
2 Prosecution, but some of the Defence teams seem to think that you should
3 have been.
4 So you will probably be asked questions which potentially,
5 potentially, could lead to information that could become incriminatory.
6 You can ask us to exempt you from answering those questions. We can
7 decide not to exempt you. If we decide not to exempt to, then that
8 evidence will not be used in any criminal proceedings against you, except
9 if you are caught here perjuring yourself.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's fine. Thank you.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. I am sorry for this rather long
12 interruption. Mr. Nicholls, you will agree with me it was all for a good
14 MR. NICHOLLS: I do agree, Your Honour. Thank you.
15 Q. Now, Witness, my next question concerns your knowledge of any
16 prisoners in the Zvornik area after the fall of Srebrenica. Do you recall
17 Muslim prisoners held in Zvornik shortly after the fall of Srebrenica, and
18 if you will tell me where that --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Finish your question and -- but don't answer the
20 question before we tell you, please.
21 MR. NICHOLLS:
22 Q. And if so, if you could tell us where those prisoners were held?
23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Yes, Mr. Bourgon.
24 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, we believe that this is a leading
25 question, and my colleague was leading the witness from the beginning. Of
1 course, that was for identification purposes, absolutely no problem with
2 that. But as regards the substance of his testimony, we will be insisting
3 with this witness, due to the nature of his am testimony, that there is no
4 leading. Thank you, Mr. President.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: It is leading because it ...
6 [Trial Chamber confers]
7 JUDGE AGIUS: I think you -- I think Mr. Bourgon's objection is
8 well-founded. You need to rephrase your question.
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour. I'm trying to frame the
10 topics but --
11 JUDGE AGIUS: At the same time, we'll -- we'll get to the same
12 area in any case, Mr. Bourgon, so let's be practical about it. But go
13 ahead and rephrase your question, please.
14 MR. NICHOLLS:
15 Q. After the fall of Srebrenica, do you recall seeing Muslim
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Where was that?
19 A. Can I simplify? They were not just prisoners, rather, in the
20 course of the day -- let me tell you, the nature of my work was such that
21 I was constantly on the move with my van. I was an errand boy, so to
22 speak. I had to all kinds of thing, so I was on the move constantly.
23 When I came to the barracks to get fuel or to report, to say that I
24 completed my previous task and needed a new one. Any time I came -- or
25 rather on that day when I came, I saw some buses, buses from various
1 cities, licence plates from various cities, parked in the barracks
2 compound with prisoners on the buses blindfolded and with ligatures on
3 their hands.
4 I saw them being taken out in groups of ten to 15, being taken to
5 the toilets inside, and then taken back to the part of the barracks
6 compound where Serbian soldiers were held in custody if they had violated
7 some rules.
8 There was room for 130 people, and there were about 20 to 30
9 there. People from Srebrenica who were wounded, and also those who were
10 not wounded. And they were kept there because they were important people
11 who knew a lot and were brought there for interrogation. I don't want to
12 say anything but the truth.
13 Neither I nor anybody else in the barracks ever heard that these
14 people were ever mistreated, no moans were ever heard. The door to this
15 conference room was always open. They sat there talking, and I came to
16 inquire out of curiosity for two or three drivers, who were my colleagues
17 who used to be my colleagues in Centrotrans, and I came to inquire to see
18 how they were. They gave me an answer and that's how it was.
19 In that group, there was a man from Tuzla --
20 Q. Let me just stop you there for a moment, Witness.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop for a moment.
22 MR. MEEK: If he stopped him from rambling, then I don't have an
24 MR. NICHOLLS: I object to the characterisation as rambling. It
25 was an answer. It was a long answer but it was detailed answer to the
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's not get keyed up on the use of the word
3 rambling. He hasn't mentioned the location of the barracks.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: That was what my next question was going to be.
5 Q. Now, sir, you talked about the barracks where these buses were and
6 where the prisoners were held. Can you tell me the exact location of the
7 barracks, which barracks are you talking about?
8 A. Am I supposed to say that?
9 Q. Yes, please, if you can tell me the location, the town, which
10 brigade these barracks were a part of?
11 A. All this while I was talking about my brigade, my barracks, the
12 only one in the area of Zvornik and the environs. That's at Karakaj, the
13 so-called Standard.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: You don't want this to be in private session or...
16 MR. NICHOLLS: I think this is all right, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
18 MR. NICHOLLS:
19 Q. Could you tell me approximately how many buses, you might have
20 said it and I apologise if you did, but approximately how many buses you
21 were talking about that you saw at the Standard barracks in Karakaj? Just
22 asking you how many buses.
23 A. On those occasions I would come to the barracks, it may have been
24 one, two, or three times a day. As for the rest of the time, I was
25 attending to different errands elsewhere. Every time I came there, there
1 was a different bus with different registration plates, but the prisoners
2 were taken out the same way as I described before, to go to the toilet,
3 and I don't know why.
4 Q. Thank you. Now, if you can tell me which unit of the Zvornik
5 Brigade was guarding the prisoners when you saw them being taken into the
7 A. They were police officers.
8 Q. Military police or civilian police, just to be very clear?
9 A. Military police.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, Mr. Nicholls. Let's go into private
11 session for just one question that I would like to put to the witness.
12 [Private session]
11 Page 7560 redacted. Private session
1 [Open session]
2 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session, Mr. Nicholls.
3 MR. NICHOLLS:
4 Q. Now, I have a new topic. In 1995, as a soldier in the Zvornik
5 Brigade, did you ever see the chief of security for the Zvornik Brigade?
6 A. Quite a few officers from the corps or staff, whatever it is
7 called, passed through Zvornik. They'd come in passing, pull up in their
8 cars outside the command, do their business there, and leave. I didn't
9 know anyone. I knew those people in the corps who I had dealings with.
10 They were mostly people from the logistics service. I knew a couple of
11 officers there.
12 I am not sure if you're asking me about someone specific.
13 Q. I'm not asking you about the corps at this moment. What I'm
14 asking you about is if you knew -- if you saw the chief of security for
15 the Zvornik Brigade, if you would see him?
16 A. I am not sure who you're referring to. If you told me his name,
17 I'd know. This chief of security, was he -- well, he was stationed
18 definitely at the corps facilities. He was definitely not in Zvornik
19 because the junior officers were down there, including officers for
20 security. Am I supposed to tell you his name?
21 Q. Tell me the names of the security officers you knew who were
22 attached to the Zvornik Brigade.
23 A. I only knew Drago, or Dragan, Nikolic; I believe his name is
24 Dragan Nikolic. I knew him because he spent a great deal of time at the
25 barracks, and I'd come across him just as anyone else. I knew him
1 personally as a decent person, a pedantic person. He was rated as an
2 officer who wasn't arrogant or taxing on anyone. I knew that he was in
3 charge of security because everyone talked about it. He was in charge of
4 the exchanges between Serbs and Muslims. I heard that he was very
5 successful in what he was doing.
6 Q. And you as a soldier, when this person Drago or Dragan Nikolic
7 from the security section came by, would you have to do anything when he
8 passed you?
9 A. No. Out of respect from -- for his rank and his duty as an
10 officer, I wouldn't really greet him or salute him in the military way. I
11 had respect for him as a person as well, and I would greet him amicably.
12 I was never in a situation to broach a conversation with him. He never
13 addressed me as (redacted), how are you doing" either.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Let's stop there. Let's go into private
15 session, please.
16 [Private session]
25 [Open session]
1 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session.
2 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honours.
3 Q. And, Witness, let me just tell you to put your mind as rest, as I
4 told you before, I think, there is a 30-minute delay before anything is
5 broadcast outside the courtroom. So be very careful about what you say,
6 but His Honour was able to catch that and it will not be broadcast. Do
7 you understand? I just want you to be at ease.
8 A. My apologies.
9 Q. Now, I want to move on. I'm not talking about the prisoners at
10 Standard and Karakaj anymore. New topic. After you had seen the
11 prisoners at Standard as you've described, the next day where did you go,
12 what did you do?
13 A. The following day -- you're asking me as if it happened yesterday,
14 the day before yesterday, or seven days ago. It was ten or 11 years ago.
15 I told you that I was always on the move in my vehicle. I don't know in
16 which part of Republika Srpska I was on that day, but I know that on the
17 day the event took place I was -- I arrived at the barracks in the early
18 evening hours.
19 At that point, I was assigned to do the job which eventually led
20 me here to sit before you. That was in the evening hours. I don't know
21 where I spent the rest of the day, and I'm not sure if you are interested
22 in hearing about it. These were different errands I had to do; for
23 instance, transport the wounded to the military medical academy at -- in
25 Q. Let me stop you, sir. Now, when you went to the barracks in the
1 evening hours, were you given an order to go anywhere?
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, it's a leading question. Please rephrase your
4 MR. NICHOLLS:
5 Q. What happened after you went to the barracks in the evening hours?
6 What happened next?
7 A. That bit I know, and I will remember for life. As I came there, I
8 was given the task from Chief Pantic to park the car within the barrack
9 compound next to the entrance and gate. I was told that cargo boxes with
10 cookies, doughnuts, and other pastry, including boxes of juices and
11 mineral water would be brought over. There were also two sacks, paper
12 sacks of bread.
13 I was given the travel order to transport the goods to the school
14 at Orahovac. I did that without knowing what was happening up there, and
15 I got into the car and went there. Should I continue?
16 Q. Yes, please. And -- yeah, please continue. What happened after
17 you went there?
18 A. I got to the school, I saw this other section of the school
19 further up, and there was a large group of soldiers. I thought something
20 was going on up there, and I presumed I was supposed to get there. I
21 parked my van, got out; and without knowing at that point what was going
22 on, I saw soldiers, military police officers. I saw the Deputy Commander
23 for logistics. Should I say his name? May I?
24 Q. Yes.
25 A. Sreten Milosevic. I saw him in the group of people standing out
1 in the street. They weren't doing anything in particular. They were
2 conversing. There were many other soldiers there and junior officers
3 whose names I cannot tell you, although I would if I could. There was
4 this private businessman who was very of a fluent, (redacted). He was a
5 financial businessman. He was wearing civilian clothes and carrying a
7 I was surprised to see him there because I never saw him
8 participating in matters such as this one. I can still didn't know at
9 that point why they were there. I opened the back door to the van where
10 the food was. The soldiers were around and Sreten Milosevic said, "Help
11 yourselves." And they each approached the van and took what they fancied.
12 Some took juices, some took savory food, others took pastry. As far as I
13 know, two sacks of bread were taken to the hall there. I still didn't
14 know why at that point. So two sacks of bread were some 40 to 50
15 kilograms of bread.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop. Mr. Nicholls, you either control your witness
17 yourself or we will do that. We usually try not intervene as much as we
18 can, but you objected to a particular word that was used by Mr. Meek.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: I was, Your Honour. I'm...
20 [Trial Chamber confers]
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Go ahead.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: First of all, may I request the redaction of the
23 name at line 25 of page 18, the name of this person, this businessman.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Let's do that.
25 JUDGE KWON: Can I ask why?
1 MR. NICHOLLS: Because I think the witness's testimony of speaking
2 to this particular person could lead to knowing who the witness is.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: I agree.
4 Mr. Bourgon, isn't that convincing enough?
5 MR. BOURGON: Well, Mr. President, I don't know. This -- I know
6 the name, but the fact that this name is mentioned, that he had a
7 conversation with the witness, would allow maybe that person to identify.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: That person can spill it out to everyone then.
9 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Our decision is to redact, and we can proceed.
11 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. And I just say that one of the sort of
12 traditional bases for allowing some leading questions is to assist in
13 focusing the witness. If I can't lead at all, then it may make it more
14 difficult. I'm just trying to lead on basic topics to frame them for the
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I see
18 that the notes mention several names in addition to the one that was
19 redacted. One of the names there may be a potential witness, I believe
20 one of them is already on the list, and so I don't see any reason why this
21 name should be redacted.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: It has already been redacted, Mr. Zivanovic.
23 Mr. Meek.
24 MR. MEEK: Your Honour, thank you very much. I -- my colleague,
25 Mr. Nicholls, mentioned leading questions. My objection wasn't
1 necessarily to the leading questions; it is to the nature of the answers.
2 They become rambling and it's not proper. I think Your Honours have just
3 seen that. Of course, I also object to the nature of the leading
4 questions one at a time, but my other objection was the nature of the
6 JUDGE AGIUS: The position as received is very simple. I have
7 sensed that Mr. Nicholls has been put on notice by you not to put leading
8 questions with this witness. If that is the case, then obviously a
9 measure of free-lance has to be allowed to the witness; then we usually
10 don't intervene. It's up to the counsel, up to counsel to regulate the --
11 his own witness.
12 I mean, what we told Mr. Nicholls is that at any time he feels
13 that the testimony shifts from what is relevant to what is not relevant,
14 he is free to -- to stop him. Otherwise, if it comes to a stage where we
15 believe it's irrelevant, then we will intervene. But as long as it is
16 relevant, I have no objection with the witness -- we have no objection
17 with the witness going on and give explanations rather than answer
18 questions. I mean, there have been trials that have been conducted that
19 had way throughout here. You know that.
20 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
21 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you. Could we go into private session
22 please, for a moment.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I?
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's go into private session.
25 [Private session]
11 Pages 7568-7570 redacted. Private session
7 [Open session]
8 JUDGE AGIUS: We are now in open session.
9 MR. NICHOLLS:
10 Q. Now, you have explained about arriving at the school in Orahovac
11 and what's happened up to this point and a conversation you had. What
12 happened next? What was the next event that you observed at the school?
13 A. I saw something, and I told about this in the statement. As I was
14 there, as the food was being distributed, I stood there inquiring who this
15 was intended for, what was going on; and then they told me that there were
16 prisoners there who were going to be exchanged. They were Muslims and
17 they were imprisoned and then they would be exchanged.
18 And as they were helping themselves to the food, a truck arrived.
19 I think it was a Zastava make. This truck arrived from the direction of
20 Krizevci and Kitovnice. It came in front of the school, turned around,
21 and stopped there; then the policemen got active. They created some kind
22 of a corridor, the policemen and soldiers, and then some policemen went to
23 the gym; and then they took a certain number of people. As they got
24 closer to the truck, I could see that there were 20 to 25 of them with
25 blindfolds and their hands tied. They yelled at them, screamed at them,
1 "Hurry up." I don't know what else they were saying.
2 They put up some sort of ladder for them to climb on to the truck.
3 As they were approaching this small column, as it was approaching, some of
4 them probably had doubts, or rather, had fear that something worse would
5 happen and some of them started fleeing -- or rather, one of them started
6 fleeing; and then by the time he realised in which direction he should
7 flee, the soldiers caught up with him and they started shooting, or
8 rather, I could hear bursts of fire behind the building and then the
9 soldiers came back without him; and then they continued getting prisoners
10 on to the truck.
11 Q. Let me stop you there for a moment, please. Now, was there anyone
12 issuing orders to the military policemen during the transport of these
13 prisoners on to the truck?
14 A. Let me tell you something. I saw Sreten Milosevic who was a
15 senior officer. He was in charge of logistics. He was not a type of
16 officer who was qualified for police and special military formations. He
17 really wasn't competent in those kinds of assignments, and he stayed there
18 the whole time by the road. He was there by the vehicles, by the van.
19 And I'm sure there were others there, other soldiers and other officers,
20 who organised the work in the sense that the people had to be taken out.
21 Now, who coordinated that entire work, I don't know. I didn't
22 see. Under the circumstances, I could only focus on certain things, and I
23 was, in a way, interested in certain figures, but not in all of the
24 events. I'm sure that there was a junior officer there or a
25 non-commissioned officer who organised that. Shall I continue?
1 Q. Just a minute. Which VRS officers were at the school in Orahovac
2 that you saw? Think carefully. Answer carefully. Tell me the names of
3 all VRS officers you saw at the school in Orahovac that day.
4 A. I saw Sreten Milosevic, Drago Nikolic, who was not in that section
5 by the road. I'm not sure it's Drago or Dragan. I think it's Drago. I
6 have a lot of nicknames myself. I think his name is Drago. He was there
7 listening and issuing orders and other people were carrying out his
8 orders. And I think that there were some non-commissioned officers, some
9 sergeants and, you know, people like that, but I'm not very knowledgeable
10 when it comes to ranks and tasks.
11 Q. I would like to show you, please - and this can be broadcast -
12 number 1691, that's a photograph. It might take a couple minutes, sir,
13 but you should see a photograph appear on the screen in front of you. If
14 you tell me when you see it, please. I know it takes a while, but I have
15 a hard copy if there is a problem. Although, I would possibly like the
16 witness to mark it, so it would be better on e-court. Maybe we'll come
17 back to that.
18 I'll ask you some more questions, Witness. You said in your last
19 answer the person Drago or Dragan Nikolic, you think his name is Drago
20 Nikolic was there listening and issuing orders and other people were
21 carrying out his orders. Explain that a little bit, who you saw him
22 issuing orders to and what they were doing in response to his orders,
24 A. Let me tell you, those were not really orders. I think that they
25 planned and coordinated how to do it systematically. There was no need
1 for him to constantly give instructions. People knew it; it had been all
2 pre-planned. As I told you, I was on the road, Drago was there; and then
3 there was a fence; and that there was the gym; and then a hall in front of
4 the gym; and then there was a door which was closed. And I don't know how
5 many of them there were inside, them and the policemen and soldiers. And
6 then just to give you a details, they took water to them in jugs, and
7 distributed water to them.
8 So it all seemed normal to me, under the circumstances, which were
9 very difficult. They needed to take water to these people. But I was
10 unable to see anyone inside and recognise anyone, including policemen,
11 soldiers or non-commissioned officers, sergeants, and so on.
12 Q. Now, tell me more about the process of prisoners being put on the
13 truck. You started saying that they were taken and climbed up some kind
14 of steps or platform. Can you explain that. How many prisoners got on
15 the truck?
16 A. I don't think that more than 25 can fit. It's not that they just
17 sat on benches, no. They also stood next to each other. In my view, 25
18 to 30 people. To tell you the truth, in such a difficult situation, one
19 doesn't really care about numbers.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Bourgon.
21 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. We -- we switched
22 pictures from 1691 to 1692. Now, I don't believe this was requested by my
23 colleague. I'm just wondering why.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: We haven't come to the picture as yet, basically.
25 Yes. Yes, it's on the screen, but he hasn't put the question to him.
1 MR. BOURGON: No, but why are we showing the picture to the
2 witness without asking a question and switching pictures.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: I agree with you. If it is a different one, you
4 have a point there.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: That is the picture I requested, and I was trying
6 to save time by continuing to ask questions until the picture came up.
7 And I didn't want to tell the witness, All right, stop talking
8 immediately. There's a picture. I'm not quite clear on the objection.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: The objection is that it's not that picture that you
10 had called up, but it's another one. That is what Mr. Bourgon is saying.
11 JUDGE KWON: My microphone is not working -- or oh, it's working.
12 But speaking for myself, I don't like the evidence of the witness to be
13 interrupted this way.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: I agree, Your Honour. I'm sorry.
15 JUDGE KWON: So you can raise the objection later on, when we come
16 to the picture. Let's proceed.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Anyway, that's why -- one reason why I let the
18 witness finish his answer first before giving the word to the -- the floor
19 to Mr. Bourgon.
20 We need to know whether this is the picture that you meant to show
21 the witness, or a different one, as Mr. Bourgon is suggesting. I don't
23 MR. NICHOLLS: That's very simple for me. That is the very
24 picture I intended to show the witness, that is the picture I intended to
25 ask questions about, and as far as I know, it's 1691.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Bourgon.
2 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. With all due respect,
3 Judge, my purpose is not to interrupt the witness. My purpose is that if
4 we move from one picture to the next and we don't know why we're doing
5 this, it's a form of leading when we show picture and scroll pictures for
6 a witness. And that's not the kind of thing that should take place.
7 Now, I may be wrong, but I thought that 1691 was the first picture
8 that was placed on the screen, and then we moved to 1962. Now, I may be
9 wrong on this, but that's what I have in my records here, as 1691 being a
10 picture with ERN number 9640; whereas, the picture 1692 has the ERN number
12 I would just like to confirm which picture my colleague wants to
13 use and then there will be no problem. There will be no interruption, but
14 there was a change. It is something that can influence the testimony of
15 the witness. Thank you, Mr. President.
16 JUDGE KWON: I was able to dig up the 1691, which is identical to
17 this one. So let's go on, in any event.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Storm in a tea cup.
19 Yes. You have the picture there, the photo. Yes, one moment. Is
20 there a problem? There is a problem.
21 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Just bear with us a while. We seem to have a
23 problem with e-court. Also, while we are at this, it seems that the
24 reason why sometimes the microphone does not switch on is that we cannot
25 have more than a number of microphones on at the same time. I was told
1 five, but this time it was only -- only three. I mean I had mine on,
2 there was Mr. Nicholls, and Mr. Bourgon's; and because of that, Judge
3 Kwon's microphone couldn't switch on. So let's try to be careful as we go
5 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
6 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Do you intend to have the witness mark, put
8 markings on this photo, Mr. Nicholls?
9 MR. NICHOLLS: I did, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, okay. So that's the problem that we have. We
11 are going to do it in a different manner, because the system here at the
12 moment is unable to make that possible. So he will mark on the hard copy
13 over there, which we have put on the ELMO for the record, and we will
14 follow him on the proper mode.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: The only -- the only other suggestion I might have
16 Your Honour, is if - I don't any if something can be fixed easily - if we
17 take the break now and if it can be fixed quickly, then we cannot have to
18 deal with paper and e-court.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: I think we can have the break as you suggest now.
20 It will be 30 minutes also because we need to discuss a few things. And
21 we will reconvene soon after. Thank you.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
23 --- Recess taken at 10.18 a.m.
24 --- On resuming at 10.52 a.m.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls. Is the technical -- has the
1 technical problem been solved? I hear that it has been solved. Could you
2 proceed, please. Thank you.
3 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes. Thank you.
4 Q. Do you see a -- are you okay, sir?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Do you see a picture on the screen in front of you?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Can you tell me what is shown in this picture, what building is
10 A. To the right is the school building. Next to the school building
11 is the gym with an entrance and everything else that is needed.
12 Q. And just to be very clear, which school is this? Do you recognise
13 which school, which town this is in?
14 A. This is in the village of Orahovac --
15 Q. Okay.
16 A. -- near Zvornik; five kilometres from Zvornik, or six.
17 Q. Thank you. Now, you talked about the truck that the prisoners
18 were loaded on to. Can you just -- if you can, mark with a little X where
19 the truck was when the prisoners were put on it. And the court officer
20 will give you a stylus - it's like a pen - and if you can put a mark where
21 you saw the truck approximately?
22 A. Yes. The truck, on its arrival, turned around. It was facing
23 Krizevci, and it was right here.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 A. My van and I were here.
1 Q. Okay. That's enough. Thanks.
2 MR. NICHOLLS: If I can say for the record, the X on the lower
3 portion of the photo, the witness stated was where the truck was when the
4 prisoners were loaded; and the other marking above it slightly to the
5 right is where he stated his van was parked.
6 Q. Witness, could you please just write, let's say in the top left
7 corner, 101, your number. Photo, 101.
8 A. [Marks]
9 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, I'm done with that. That can be taken
10 off the screen.
11 Q. Now, I just have one follow-up question. You said earlier that
12 the soldiers and the police, when the prisoners were loaded on to the
13 truck, were yelling things, "Hurry up, hurry up, get on the trucks,"
14 things like that. Were those military police or civilian police?
15 A. Not civilian. Military.
16 Q. All right. Now, I'd like you to continue, tell me what happened
17 next. What happened after you saw these -- I don't remember the exact
18 number you said, and it -- I don't expect you to remember the exact
19 number. But after the prisoners were loaded on the truck, what happened
20 next? What did you see?
21 A. I saw the people being put on the trucks. The truck started; and
22 when it was on the road, a jeep started riding behind it. Inside there
23 were soldiers with open doors, ready to intervene should somebody decide
24 to jump off the truck. I was told to ride behind them until we reached a
25 certain place where I was supposed to unload the rest of the juices and
1 food that I had my van.
2 So we arrived up there; the truck stopped. The police and
3 soldiers - I don't know - had more of a fierce attitude as they were
4 ordering them to get off. This is where the main asphalt road is for
5 Krizanovici [phoen] and Kitovnice villages. The truck stopped there and
6 they were getting off the truck, and it's more towards the road leading
7 toward the railroad. They -- they marched them next to a heap of corpses,
8 and it was then that I realised that it wasn't actually an exchange, that
9 it was something horrible.
10 They lined them up there. A group of soldiers, men, four, five,
11 six of them, stood there. The others stood; and when they were given on
12 order to shoot, they shot and the others fell; and then they took out
13 several groups - I don't know. One, two, three groups - and then they
14 were done with them there. Shall I continue?
15 Q. Please do.
16 A. And then in my mind something terrible, something unheard of
17 happened. Something that I have not been able to forget until this day,
18 and will never forget. I developed diabetes after this, just because of
19 thinking of what a man can do to another man. This is where these people
20 were shot to death.
21 When giving my statement, no matter how many times you watch
22 atrocities on -- in various movies, documentaries, and so on, no matter
23 how many horrible books you read, books that make you cry over somebody
24 else's fate, let me tell you it's nothing compared to what one can
25 experience oneself, as I did there. I developed diabetes after that.
1 In that heap, in that pile of dead bodies, who did not resemble
2 people any longer, this was just a pile of flesh in bits, and then a human
3 being emerged. I say a human being, but it was actually a boy of some
4 five to six years. It is unbelievable. Unbelievable. A human being came
5 out and started moving towards the path, the path where men with automatic
6 rifles stood doing their job. And this child was walking towards them.
7 All of those soldiers and policemen there, these people who had no trouble
8 shooting -- I shouldn't judge them because I don't know about their
9 situation. Perhaps they did it because of the order they received and
10 perhaps they did it because of their nature. There are all kinds of
11 people, and some of them may have done it gladly. Some probably
12 did it because they had to.
13 And then all of a sudden they lowered their rifles and all of
14 them, to the last one, just froze. And it was just a child there. Had it
15 been a person of 70 or 80 years old, it would have been horrible, let
16 alone an innocent, sweet child. And the child was covered in bits of
17 bowel tissue of other people. Later on in the hospital in Zvornik, the
18 doctor showed me, he said, "Sir, this stinks." And back at the time I
19 didn't feel the stench. I didn't even feel it as I was driving the child.
20 I only felt it afterwards, after everything had happened.
21 This gentleman -- I apologise, I used the word gentleman. This
22 officer, I think he was lieutenant-colonel. I'm sure he was
23 lieutenant-colonel or colonel at the most. I cannot get up here, although
24 I would like to illustrate this to you. I would like to give you a
25 descriptive impression. And he was like the most arrogant person who
1 turned to the men, the soldiers, and said, "What are you waiting for?
2 Just finish him off." And then these very men who had no trouble killing
3 people earlier, said to him, "Sir, you have a pistol yourself, so why
4 don't you finish him off. Go ahead, because we can't do that."
5 All of them who were there were simply speechless; then the
6 officer said, "Take the child, put him on the truck, and take him down
7 there; and then bring him here with the next batch and then he'll be
8 finished off."
9 I was there. I was completely powerless. I was an outsider
10 there, a logistics person, and I was there with a job just to keep quiet.
11 I had nothing to do with what was happening there. They were executing
12 people, and my job was just to bring in supplies; and then they took the
13 child, not the men who were finishing off the people, no. The others took
14 the child by the hand. Yes. And as the child was emerging out of the
15 pile of those who had been executed, he was saying, "Baba," this is how
16 they call father. He was saying, "Baba, where are you?" The child was in
18 They took him to the truck. The child, knowing that he had been
19 on that truck earlier, started convulsing. He was shaking and saying,
20 "No, no. I'm not going to do it." Then I intervened in order to assist
21 everybody, including the child. And I told them, "Listen, I'll turn the
22 lights on in my van, and I will put the music on so that I can divert his
23 attention from all of this that's happening. I'll turn the radio on,"
24 because I wanted the child to come to his senses. He was completely lost,
25 he didn't know what was happening and who he was.
1 I said, "I will try to take him wherever you want me to take him."
2 So I came into the van and I put the light on, because -- and it helped
3 the child because to him everything was just pure darkness. And I put the
4 radio on, the local radio station, with the music that was familiar to
5 him, and I did this to allow him to recover, to come back to his senses.
6 I said to him, "Come here, come here, come to me." I said, "Look.
7 I have light on, music on." All of a sudden he took me by the hand and
8 came to me. I don't want any one of you to experience that. I used to be
9 a strong man. I used to be a firm man. That was my reputation. But I
10 wouldn't wish this upon anyone to experience this -- the grip, the grip of
11 him on my hand, and I was amazed at his strength. The strength of this
13 And then I -- I got into the car, I -- I left him alone for a
14 second, just because I had to turn the car on, and I put the music on, and
15 then we went back with the rest - you know who the rest were - so that the
16 next batch could be finished off.
17 From this place, which is called Orac, there is a water source
18 there, water fountain, known as Orac. I drove to the elementary school,
19 to the gym. And as I was driving down there, I knew that I should not
20 leave him there. I knew that I could not leave him there. Since I had
21 completed my task, I distributed the food and other supplies. And I was
22 supposed to leave the child there but I couldn't do that, and I thought
23 maybe I should drive to the barracks in Karakaj, the Standard barracks.
24 There was a health centre for lightly wounded soldiers or somebody
25 who had flu, you know, who were lightly ill. At first I thought I should
1 leave him there in the health centre. As I was driving to Karakaj, I was
2 thinking to myself, and I was thinking, "What if I leave him there at the
3 military facility. I need to explain to everyone how I came across this
4 child." And I didn't dare tell people about the situation. I didn't even
5 dare tell my friends about what had happened at that site.
6 So I decided to go to Zvornik instead, to put him in the hospital.
7 I knew he would be registered there, and once he was registered then there
8 was no chance for anything else. I was aware of what I was doing. I knew
9 that I was even perhaps risking my own life; because if that man was ready
10 to kill a huge amount of people, then he would certainly be ready to
11 kill. "God forbid, God forbid," I said. I can't continue.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Zivanovic, I saw you rising earlier on. Is
13 it the transcript?
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. In the
15 transcript something was omitted, something that the witness said; namely,
16 that it was evening and that it was dusk.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] That wasn't translated. Page 36,
19 line 14.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you for pointing that out. Give me one
21 second to make my own annotations.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. It was in the context when
23 the witness said that to the child that it was just pure darkness, even
24 though it was still somewhat light. It was dusk.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. It's clear enough. I think the witness
1 concurs with that.
2 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
3 MR. NICHOLLS:
4 Q. Thank you, Witness. You said a minute ago you can't go on. Do
5 you feel all right? Can I ask you some more questions?
6 JUDGE AGIUS: If you need a break, we'll give you a break.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. No, I didn't say -- I just
8 mentioned my own name. I apologise.
9 MR. NICHOLLS:
10 Q. The transcript did not pick up your name. You're all right.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]
12 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone please, Your Honour.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: The transcript did not pick up your name, so you
14 are all right.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: The transcript didn't, so we don't need to redact
16 that. But I need to make sure that the sound, video recording, including
17 sound, if someone check on that, please; or we can redact the last part of
18 the video. It's the safe way to go about it. All right. So please
19 redact from lines 13 on page 38 on the video, not on the transcript, until
20 here. That will not be broadcast.
21 Let's go ahead.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Sir, you described this lieutenant-colonel as saying that the
24 child should be shot. Can you describe him as best you can to me what he
25 looked like, the appearance of that lieutenant-colonel?
1 A. The key element in that situation are etched, both in my heart and
2 in my brain. It will remain there for the rest of my life. The man was
3 taller than I am. He was tall man. He had a moustache. He was a
4 good-looking man. Manly. He was in an officer's uniform with rank
5 insignia, with a pistol.
6 Q. And if you can just tell me a little bit about his build. Was he
7 thin, was he large? Just a little bit more, as that's the only thing I
8 think you haven't really described.
9 A. Well-built. Well-built. When I said tall, I meant that he was
10 bigger than me.
11 Q. And just for the record, when the witness said "well-built," he
12 held his hands out at his sides to indicate that.
13 You talked about - I'm sorry. I know this is difficult perhaps
14 for you - about the prisoners being shot in one, two, or three groups. Do
15 you remember, as much as you can, how were they shot? Were they shot
16 individually? Were they shot as a group? Did the soldiers act on their
17 own? Just describe as much as you can remember about how the executions
18 were actually carried out.
19 A. You know what, earlier when I said that some of them -- and I
20 don't know any of those men. But on the basis of their conduct during the
21 execution, during that event, one gained an impression that some of them
22 did it gladly, as I've told you earlier. And some did it because they had
23 to. A detail that was terrible for me once it was all over - naturally,
24 I've seen this in movies and so on - I guess later on those who still gave
25 some signs of life had to be finished off.
1 One of the guys who was that type of a person, and he saw
2 somebody's toe stirring, and I don't know how to describe it to you
3 picturesquely, his attitude, his words. He was saying he needed to go and
4 killed that toe. You know, it wasn't the head or any other body part; it
5 was just that this toe bothered him and he had to finish him off.
6 And I think that in that terrible evil he could have acted more
7 humanely, you know, not be bothered by that toe or perhaps a strand of
8 hair that was blown by the wind. I don't know. Perhaps I would not have
9 developed diabetes, but perhaps it would seem natural to somebody else.
10 But this was my impression, this was my experience of this event, and I
11 will always carry it with me.
13 Q. It's perhaps being a bit overcareful, but could we redact what he
14 just said (redacted).
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]
17 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: I apologise to you. Yes, I think we better redact
19 that. Yes, go ahead.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
21 Q. You said you weren't sure some of the soldiers might not have
22 wanted to fire. They were doing it because they were under orders. Was
23 there any order to fire given?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Who gave that order to fire on the prisoners?
1 A. I apologise. A moment ago I forgot to give you this one detail,
2 and thank you for reminding me. This is contained in my statement.
3 At the time when this whole story about the child was discussed,
4 whether the child should be put in the van, a young man approached me. He
5 had curly hair, and I didn't know him. And he said to me -- I said my
6 name again.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: I didn't hear it, but -- I didn't hear it. I don't
8 think -- yes, yes. But let's be cautious, and let's redact these two
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Excellent.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: We will block the broadcast of those two lines.
12 MR. NICHOLLS:
13 Q. Thank you, Witness, for bringing that to our attention. Please be
14 careful and continue what you were saying about what this young man with
15 curly hair said to you.
16 A. Yes. Thank you. I apologise. He addressed me by my name and
17 said, "Believe me when I tell this to you, I did not have the strength to
18 shoot at them. I shot above their heads." And I will remember this story
19 always. I will never forget. Why did he tell me this? What drove him to
20 tell me this? I never had anything to do with this young man. Since he
21 addressed me by my name, he probably knew me. But there was this strong
22 urge within him probably to tell me this, to vent it out, to find comfort
23 in telling me this. This, what I experienced, led me to conclude that
24 some of them were ordered to do that.
25 Q. Thank you. And I had asked you was there an order to fire given,
1 and you said, yes. My question is: Did you hear or see anybody give an
2 order to fire? Try to remember.
3 A. The only thing I can tell you, and I apologise for having to say
4 it this way, perhaps. I wasn't there to follow what was going on and
5 memorise the details. I was focused solely on the people who were
6 standing there, who were supposed to live their lives out, to breathe, and
7 they were all to perish. I don't know who ordered this, whether it was
8 one of the officers from the Zvornik Brigade. Don't hold it against me,
9 the fact that I was not in a position to observe that because this went on
10 the whole day, and I don't know whether it went on for one or two days.
11 I also forgot to say a moment ago that this young man wasn't
12 brought in in that group of people that I observed arriving and getting
13 off the truck and going on to the execution site. This child was not
14 among them. He had probably arrived earlier. This is what I forgot to
15 say earlier.
16 Q. Okay. Thank you. Let me make sure my question was clear, and it
17 may not have been. I wasn't asking you if you knew who had given the
18 order that all of these people should be murdered at some point. Maybe I
19 could ask my question more clearly.
20 At the -- when you were at the execution site, did you see or hear
21 anybody there just give the order to fire for the particular prisoners
22 that were killed when you were there?
23 A. You see, nobody was able to issue orders, nor was there anyone who
24 was senior in rank to those two men there. One of the two was, but I told
25 you that I can't remember which one. Only the two of them were in charge
1 there, and the only ones issuing orders.
2 I believe that the person holding the higher rank was the one
3 issuing orders, because he was the one who said, "Well, what are you
4 waiting for? Finish him off;" meaning the child. Because had it been the
5 brigade person, then he would have approached the lads there and told them
6 the same thing. I base my conclusion on the fact that he said, "Finish
7 him off," loud and clear.
8 Q. Okay. Thank you. Now, you said there were two men there with
9 rank, and that it wasn't the brigade person who said, "Finish him off."
10 Who was that other person with rank, who was the brigade person there?
11 What is that person's name?
12 A. That was Drago Nikolic. I don't know what his rank was. I know
13 it was relatively high. He wasn't a non-commissioned officer. He was a
14 commissioned officer.
15 Q. Okay. Now, you have explained what this lieutenant-colonel was
16 doing. Best you remember, what was Drago Nikolic doing when you saw him
17 at the execution site?
18 A. He was there because the men who were escorting prisoners from the
19 trucks, he was to direct them. Because the other men who were there were
20 executing people, firing at them, and that was their job. Whereas, Drago
21 was with these others. He wasn't yelling at them or anything of that
22 kind. He was simply directing them what to do. Although the prisoners
23 who were getting off the trucks did not do anything in particular, and
24 there was no need to intervene in their regard.
25 When they were taken out of the gym, they were told to be careful
1 not to spread panic, that they would be going for an exchange, that they
2 would be exchanged for the -- the soldiers of the other side. And for
3 that reason, they were not worried. They maintained their calm.
4 Q. Thank you. I want to go back --
5 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's addition: They were misled this
7 MR. NICHOLLS:
8 Q. Thank you. I want to go back to the child that you told us about
9 that you took to the hospital. You have described him as being covered in
10 pieces of bodies, if I can say it that way, of persons who had been
11 killed. What was his physical condition? Had he been hurt in any way?
12 A. Yes. Yes, I forgot to mention this. When you compare it to a
13 handyman, a person working on a house plastering the walls and the way the
14 person is sprayed upon one's own clothes with dust and everything. Here
15 you had clothes covered in bits of tissue and blood-stains; and then dust
16 all over it. So there were these dark stains all over him.
17 He was also hurt. I knew that it wasn't his tendons or anything
18 of the sort that were injured because he was able to walk. I gathered the
19 extent of his wounds only when he was treated by the doctor who had to
20 stitch him up. He was lucky that none of the wounds went as far as into
21 his bones. Should I continue with my story?
22 Q. Yes. I just want to now take you back to when you take the child
23 into the hospital of Zvornik. Can you tell us what happened, just briefly
24 the process of what happened when you brought the boy in?
25 A. I took him right to the entrance to a surgical ward. The child
1 grabbed my hand tightly, and I told you already about the grip, his strong
2 grip. And he kept saying, "Baba, please don't let them take me." And I
3 still hear his words reverberating in my ears.
11 Page 7593 redacted.
21 [Private session]
11 Page 7595 redacted. Private session
14 [Open session]
15 MR. NICHOLLS: I would like to now show the witness P02452. It
16 must not be broadcast, this photograph.
17 Q. I'm going to show you a photograph in a minute, Witness. I would
18 like you to take a minute and look at that photograph, Witness. Do you
19 recognise anyone in the photo?
20 A. I don't know the two adults. If you're showing me this photograph
21 to tell me that this is the boy, I'll tell you only one thing: Based on
22 the colour of the hair, complexion, and face, it's a bit different. It's
23 not the way it remains in my memory. But based on his face and build,
24 stature, that's the child, yes. I don't know the two grown-ups there.
25 Q. Thank you. I don't have any further questions at this time.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Nicholls.
2 Who is going first? So we will have a break in 30 minutes' time.
3 Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] I only wanted to ask the Chamber
5 the following: Since the evidence of the witness is considerably
6 different from the information we received beforehand, could we have a
7 break now to see what line of questioning we will take? We would indeed
8 need the opportunity to consult with our client.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you have anything to state about that,
10 Mr. Nicholls, before we decide? We are not in a position to assess what
11 Mr. Zivanovic has stated because, of course, we are not privy to the
12 witness's previous statement.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Well, if I could be clear. One, I don't like that
14 type of comment made in front of the witness. I don't think it's fair.
15 Second, what I think Mr. Zivanovic, I don't believe he's implying that
16 what he's heard today is new.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Anyway, I think we will play -- we will play it
18 based on our courtroom experience. Let's have a 30-minute break now. The
19 break we'll have it now. 30 minutes.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: I have no objection to the break and the
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I think we better leave it like that and we will
23 have the break now. 30 minutes.
24 --- Recess taken at 11.47 a.m.
25 --- On resuming at 12.20 p.m.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Who's going first? Mr. Bourgon is going first.
2 Yes, Mr. Bourgon.
3 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
4 Cross-examination by Mr. Bourgon:
5 Q. Good morning, Witness. Are you in a position to tell me good
7 A. I did say. You didn't hear me.
8 Q. Sorry. It wasn't picked up in the transcript, and I didn't hear
9 it. I'm sorry.
10 A. Well, you are addressing me.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Let's proceed.
12 MR. BOURGON:
13 Q. I would like to begin, Witness, by confirming before I ask you any
14 questions, that earlier this week you were provided with a letter which
15 was given to you by my colleague from the Prosecution, and a letter in
16 which I requested an interview, an opportunity to meet with you. Can you
17 confirm this?
18 A. Yes, that's correct.
19 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please come closer to the
21 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]
22 MR. BOURGON: Thank you.
23 Q. Now, Witness, in this letter which you read, there was a paragraph
24 in which I mentioned, "Having reviewed this material in addition to that
25 provided by other witnesses who have or will appear as witnesses in this
1 case, there are some issues we would like to clarify with you before your
2 testimony and, accordingly, we kindly ask you for an interview with a view
3 to discuss these issues."
4 Do you recall reading a paragraph or words to that effect?
5 A. Yes, yes. But before that, I apologise, I don't know how long
6 before that I had your call. It was a verbal contact. It was a call from
7 you to meet. I refused that; and then after this written contact, I also
8 refused. If you want me to provide you with a reason ...
9 Q. By all means, go ahead.
10 A. Gentlemen, all of us have our own views and opinions. I'm not a
11 lawyer, I'm a zero in a field, and I speak to you as a man. Up until the
12 meeting with the Prosecutors on the 25th of November, I don't know whether
13 you or somebody of your colleagues who are in the field had occasion to
14 contact me. That was one opportunity; and then after the 25th of
15 November, after the contact with the Prosecution, my name became familiar
16 to you because it was included in a list. And I was expecting that
17 somebody in Bosnia, (redacted)
1 (redacted), and to tell
2 you the truth, I actually contacted them to see whether they wanted to
3 talk to me. I know these associates, that's quite normal and natural.
4 One of them is even a friend of mine.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Let's go into private session for a
6 short while because we need to consult with you on this.
7 [Private session]
11 Page 7601 redacted. Private session
12 [Open session]
13 JUDGE AGIUS: We are now in open session.
14 MR. BOURGON:
15 Q. Witness, the question that I just put to you was that the first
16 witness statement you gave to the office of the Prosecution was on 25 and
17 26 November, and I may have made a mistake, we're talking about November
18 2005. Is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And this interview, because this is not mentioned on the
21 statement, I'd like to know where this interview took place, and maybe for
22 this we will need to go into closed session?
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
24 MR. NICHOLLS: I view it as completely irrelevant. Where the
25 interview took place.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: It may become relevant, but let's go into private
3 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, I have lots of questions on the
4 taking of those statements, and believe me --
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop, stop, Mr. Bourgon.
6 MR. BOURGON: -- they are relevant for credibility purposes.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop, Mr. Bourgon. We haven't acceded or we haven't
8 agreed to Mr. Nicholls's objection.
9 [Private session]
11 Pages 7604-7620 redacted. Private session
25 [Open session]
1 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session now. Not yet. We are now.
2 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
3 Q. Now, Witness you mentioned today that the chief of the transport
4 section was a fellow named Pantic, and this is the same as the information
5 you provided in your statement. I would like to confirm with you that
6 that it was Pantic who gave you the order to go Orahovac on the 14th of
7 July or that day, because you never mentioned the exact date. But the
8 order to go to Orahovac was given to you by Pantic. Is that correct?
9 A. No. He only gave the order, and I was the one who wrote down
10 Uzice and "loko" afterwards because the travel order is valid for the
11 entire day. You see, there are many places around Zvornik that are called
12 by their own names; whereas, these, the ones we are discussing here, are
13 the -- basically the suburbs of Zvornik. I am the one who writes that
14 down. They don't issue us with separate orders.
15 Q. Witness, I have moved on to another topic. I am past the work
16 order. I am simply concentrating on the fact that that day you mentioned
17 today in your testimony, that the order to go to Orahovac was given to you
18 by Pantic. Is that correct?
19 A. Sir, I speak Serbian. I told you earlier that I received my order
20 that morning early before 5.00, before I set out to Uzice, and then based
21 on that order I ran my errands. I received it in the morning, not in the
22 evening when I was supposed to go where I went.
23 Q. Thank you, Witness.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: There is something wrong, because still we had two
25 questions and still the answer seems to be unrelated to this person
2 Mr. Bourgon's questions, last two questions, were very
3 straightforward. That particular day when you were ordered, given
4 instructions to go to Orahovac, who gave you that order? Was it Pantic or
5 was it someone else?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I typically receive
7 an order in the morning as I arrive in the barracks. On this day it was
8 on 5.00. And everything else -- once I'm done with my work, I go back to
9 the barracks, I report to Pantic, to say here I am. And he gives me an
10 order and I don't mean new order, no. A verbal one; and then I write it
11 into this document. I think this is where the misunderstanding stems
13 JUDGE AGIUS: I think it's clear enough now.
14 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. I would like to have on
15 e-court, just to make things easier, the statement which was provided by
16 the witness on the 25th of November, and that is a document 3D for delta,
17 80. The paragraphs are numbered so we can follow both in B/C/S and in
18 English at the same time. I would like to refer the witness to paragraph
19 5, if we can focus on paragraph 5 of this statement.
20 Q. Witness, at paragraph 5, and I would read to you, and I would ask
21 you to confirm that this is your testimony today, that "Rade Pantic
22 ordered me," that is you, "to drive my van to the school in Orahovac to
23 deliver food and juices to the soldiers there."
24 Is that your testimony today?
25 A. I confirm every word that I said in 2005.
1 Q. Thank you, Witness. If we go on to the next sentence it says, "It
2 was already late afternoon." Today you mentioned it was early evening.
3 Your statement says early [sic] afternoon. Which is it?
4 JUDGE AGIUS: It's late afternoon, at least what we have on the
6 MR. BOURGON: Sorry, I got carried away. It's late afternoon.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: But what's the difference between late afternoon and
8 early evening?
9 MR. BOURGON: That's what I asked the witness. I would like to
10 know what time it was.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: I mean, you asked him the question and -- Okay. Go
12 ahead and ask him the time.
13 MR. BOURGON:
14 Q. What time was it? Because your statement says late afternoon and
15 today you said early evening. I would like to know what time you were
16 given this order by Pantic.
17 A. Sir, as far as I remember, I think that a time is indicated
18 somewhere there. 2030 hours; that was that time. It was at the time when
19 the sun went down. There was no moon up there yet, and I think that I
20 said, I gave the time reference. 8.30.
21 Q. So if we say dusk, would that correspond to the approximate time;
22 the sun was coming down but it was not yet dark? Is that correct?
23 A. Well, I am a romantic by nature, and I know very well what a dusk
24 is. I don't want to describe it to you. I have no ability to dim the
25 lighting here, but dusk is the beginning of darkness.
1 Q. Thank you, Witness. Now, also in paragraph 5, which is in your
2 screen in front of you, it talks about the contents of the boxes which
3 were loaded on your van, and it says that these boxes contained doughnuts,
4 rolls of bread, and a couple of bags of bread, as well as in the order
5 talks about juices. I would like to confirm that all this was indeed
6 placed on your vehicle; the juices, the doughnuts, and the bread and the
7 bags of bread. Is that correct?
8 A. Let me say again. In the car, there were, say, three crates of
9 various savory rolls, savory pastry types, and doughnuts, crescents,
10 cookies, and two paper sacks, the ones used by bread makers, full of
11 bread. That's what I stated and that's what's written there.
12 Q. You confirm that there were also some juices there?
13 A. Yes, of course. Juices, mineral water. There were three crates
14 of that alone, and then three crates of rolls and pastry, and then two
15 paper sacks of bread.
16 Q. Let me just ask you to confirm one more thing concerning the
17 vehicle, and I will move to the question which is my issue now. When you
18 brought back the vehicle that night, now we confirmed a little earlier
19 that this is at 1.00 in the morning. You confirm it is your testimony
20 today that you met with Pantic on that occasion. Is that correct?
21 A. Whether it was Pantic or the colleague who substituted called
22 Miso, I can't even remember his last name. And I used to know it and
23 provide it in all documents. Miso something. One of them.
24 Q. Now, Witness, in your statement, and this is -- I would now like
25 to focus on paragraph 33 of the statement. And you testified to that
1 effect today, that you returned the vehicle to Pantic after going to
2 Zvornik hospital. Are you changing your testimony or do you stick to your
3 testimony as you said earlier, that every word you said in 2005 was true?
4 A. You said that I returned the vehicle to Pantic, and then went to
5 the hospital. It's not logical. I first went to the hospital with the
6 child, completed everything there, then brought the car back. The car had
7 to be washed. I parked it and then I left.
8 Q. And my question is not this. My question is: You returned the
9 vehicle and you had a conversation with Pantic about taking some days of
10 leave, as you discussed today. Is that correct?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Now, Witness, I have some information that indicates that Pantic
13 was not in Zvornik on -- from the 11th to the 15th of July. He was absent
14 from the headquarters and he had been given a leave or holidays or some
15 free time. I suggest to you that it was not possible for Pantic to give
16 you an order to go to Orahovac that day.
17 A. Well, you know what, I said just a minute ago, and it's included
18 in my statement. There was Miso there. The two of them did that job
19 together in shifts. I don't know. One worked in the morning and the
20 other one later. Pantic was the chief of transportation; and if Pantic
21 wasn't there, then Miso stood in for him. Now, I can't remember whether
22 on that day it was Pantic or Miso. Is that important?
23 Q. Well, Witness, you mentioned that every word you said in 2005 was
24 the truth and this is indicated in your statement, and today you also said
25 it under oath in your testimony. So I believe that it is indeed very
1 important. You said it was Pantic. Are you changing your testimony? Are
2 you saying that you did not tell the truth in your statement?
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: I think he's answered this question. This topic
5 has been gone over quite a bit.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Let him answer the question. It's an important
8 MR. NICHOLLS: That's fine. I would also like to know what the
9 information is. Normally that's put to a witness.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Let him answer the question.
11 It's being put to you that although when you made -- when you gave
12 the statement in November 2005, you were quite clear and catagoric that it
13 was rather Pantic that you spoke to after you returned from the hospital.
14 Now you are not so sure, and you are changing your testimony in the sense
15 that it could have been the other one, Miso; is that correct? Or even the
16 one that ordered you to go to Orahovac? I mean that's already been sort
17 of dealt with. You agreed to that proposition that I have made to you,
18 trying to reflect Mr. Bourgon's question.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Let me tell you. In the beginning
20 of my evidence, I said what tasks I had, and who my superior was, Pantic,
21 chief of transportation. And everything I said pertained to him because
22 he was the chief of transportation. Now, I didn't tell you who the other
23 officers were in logistics, who sent people here, sent people there. I
24 can't remember whether it was Pantic on that day. If it wasn't Pantic
25 then it was Miso. I can't remember his last name. But the two of them
1 were the main people in transportation. They were the ones who gave
2 orders, not only to me, but to other drivers as well. I mentioned only
3 Pantic because Pantic was the chief.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. You also mentioned earlier on in your
5 testimony some more details. You gave more details relating to your
6 return from the hospital. Because you stated earlier on that when you
7 returned to barracks from the hospital there you met Pantic, who didn't
8 know about your story, and you asked him for three or four days off, which
9 I understand he gave you.
10 Did you actually -- do you confirm that the person you met after
11 your return from Zvornik hospital and who granted the three days was
12 indeed Pantic, or could it also be Miso? This is what we want to know.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it was my mistake that
14 throughout the time -- you know how it is when you are a driver and you
15 spend your entire life behind a wheel, and I'm not experienced in talking.
16 I should have said either my chief or his deputy; one of them. That's
17 what I should have said, but I didn't. And you know very well, you know
18 full well who was on duty that day, because you can find their signatures
19 in various books, logbooks, documents, and so on.
20 I don't know to what extent it's important to you. I don't wish
21 to lie. I don't wish to blame anyone. Perhaps it wasn't Pantic. At any
22 rate there was a chief there. I came there, left the vehicle, I asked for
23 some days of leave. If Pantic wasn't there, then the other one was, the
24 one who substituted for him. Nobody else did that job but the two of
1 MR. BOURGON:
2 Q. Thank you, Witness. I would like you to refer to 3D79, seven
3 nine, on the -- and my question is quite straightforward. Pantic was the
4 chief of transport.
5 MR. BOURGON Sorry. We have to go in 1D217. 3D79 is not -- has
6 not been released, but it's the same document that was released by another
7 team. 1D217.
8 Q. Witness, did you know that the chief of transport that you saw
9 every day, as you say, that his mother had died during that time-frame,
10 immediately in July?
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Madam Registrar, please attend to the
17 redaction that we need to make. I suggest lines 23 to -- 23 to 25 on the
18 previous page, and lines 1 and 2 of the present page.
19 Okay. Go ahead, Mr. Bourgon I'm sorry for the interruption.
20 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: One rubs the other back, so it --
24 MR. BOURGON: We are in private session, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: No. We are not in private session. We are in open
1 session. Let's go into private session, and straight away. Redact also
2 lines 8 and 9, please, from page 83, and I suggest you put your question
3 again please.
4 [Private session]
21 [Open session]
22 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session.
23 MR. BOURGON:
24 Q. Now, first, before we move to the next individual, I'd like you to
25 confirm whether or not the Prosecution - because this is a Prosecution
1 exhibit I just showed you - whether this was mentioned to you that Pantic
2 was away from the headquarters on the 10th to the 15th of July. Did that
3 information -- was that provided to you by the Prosecution when you told
4 them that Pantic gave you the order?
5 A. No. The Prosecution never told me that Pantic wasn't there. We
6 didn't discuss whether he was there or wasn't. I simply said that the
7 chief of transportation service and Miso stood in for him. So if it
8 wasn't Pantic issuing orders, it was Miso.
9 Q. Thank you, Witness. Now, you spoke today in your testimony of
10 Sreten Milosevic and, actually, you said he was the logistics man in the
11 Zvornik Brigade. Is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Now, Witness, I have some information which comes from Sreten
14 Milosevic, and this information is -- suggests the following proposition
15 to you: Milosevic has provided some information, and I'm quoting from
16 information available to the Defence, that "in the army storage and in
17 provisions, there were never any fruit juices in 1995." Who is correct,
18 Milosevic about the juices or you say that there is no juices or you say
19 that there are juices?
20 JUDGE AGIUS: You need to rephrase it.
21 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: That is an improper question. The person he is
23 referring to is on witness list. There is no problem with him giving the
24 proposition. I did not stand up right away. The Court, Your Honours have
25 made this very clear that witnesses are not to be pitted against each
1 other in this way.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: You need to rephrase your question.
3 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
4 MR. NICHOLS: Well, Your Honour, I just--
5 JUDGE AGIUS: One minute. Mr. Bourgon will rephrase his question.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I answer? No need, I can answer
7 loud and clear.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, go ahead, Witness.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Sir, I drove juices and 200 to 500
10 kilos of meat to soldiers, to kitchens. Where they had come from, from
11 stores, from private individuals who donated that in order not to serve in
12 the army, I wasn't interested in that. But it was loaded in there, and I
13 would wait until it was taken out of the barracks and loaded into the car.
14 And sometimes I would even go to some stores because I was told go to that
15 store, take this from them; go to this private butcher, take this from
16 them; go to the Vitinka juice factory and take this from them. So I would
17 that and take it back to the barracks, and that is how it was.
18 MR. BOURGON: On the basis of this answer, Witness --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: We need to stop here, Mr. Bourgon and we will
20 proceed tomorrow.
21 Yes. The witness, I think, can be escorted.
22 Witness, we will see you again tomorrow morning. Please,
23 before -- one moment before you leave the courtroom. Since you haven't
24 finished your testimony, it's important that you do not contact or allow
25 anyone to contact you in relation to the matters that you are testifying
1 upon, until you finish your testimony.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Have a good afternoon and evening, late and early,
4 and we'll see you tomorrow morning.
5 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Just if Mr. Bourgon could provide me with a list of
7 documents he intends to use on cross per our practice here.
8 [The witness withdrew]
9 MR. NICHOLLS: I was provided with a list, but it's nothing but
10 witness statements and information sheets.
11 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, I -- sorry. But this is not -- this
12 is incorrect. Those documents were released, and the Prosecution has been
13 informed that these documents would be used on cross.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right, anyway.
15 MR. BOURGON: I'm talking about Prosecution document P 311, P 295,
16 as well as a document concerning the roster and the attendance record.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: We must not take time from the Prlic trial, so
18 please try to liaise amongst yourselves and we will come back tomorrow
19 morning at 9.00. Thank you.
20 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.46 p.m.,
21 to be reconvened on Friday, the 23rd day of
22 February, 2007, at 9.00 a.m.