1 Tuesday, 22 July 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you. Madam Registrar, could you
6 call the case, please.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is the case
8 number IT-05-88-T, The Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic, et al.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you, ma'am. We are sitting pursuant
10 to Rule 15 bis this morning presumably for the entire sitting.
11 Judge Stole has something very personal to attend to and will be back
12 with us as soon as possible.
13 All the accused are here. From the Defence teams, I only notice
14 the absence of Mr. Bourgon.
15 Prosecution, we have Mr. McCloskey, Mr. Thayer, Mr. Mitchell.
16 Any preliminaries before we bring in the new witness? All right.
17 Let's finish the documents business relating to yesterday's witness then.
18 Mr. Nikolic? I'm sorry. I see Mr. Thayer. Yes?
19 MR. THAYER: Good morning, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning.
21 MR. THAYER: I just wanted to alert the Court that we did not
22 have any objections to any of the documents proffered by any of the
23 Defence teams.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. So basically I just need a
25 confirmation that you still wish to tender these documents that are
1 listed in the sheet of paper that was circulated, Mr. Nikolic.
2 MR. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. We
3 supplied the list of documents that we are tendering to the Prosecution
4 and to the Trial Chamber, and this is the definite list, definitive list.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Is there any objection from any of the
6 other Defence teams? We hear none. Mr. Zivanovic?
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. We'd like to tender
8 1D3310. It is the video clip we showed yesterday to the witness. Thank
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Any objection, Mr. Thayer?
11 MR. THAYER: No, Mr. President.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Any objection from any of the other Defence teams?
13 So it is so admitted. All right. Let's proceed with the next witness,
14 Mr. Thayer.
15 MR. THAYER: Mr. President, we did have one exhibit we wish to
16 tender, and that was P03523, a MUP report type-signed by Mr. Kijac that
17 was used with the witness.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Did you give notice of that to the parties?
19 MR. THAYER: I don't think we distributed the list with that one
20 document, but it was the one document that we did use that was not
21 previously admitted.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay because we are not aware of it. So any
23 objection? Mr. Nikolic?
24 MR. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] No objections, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Is there anyone else who wishes to object? None.
1 So it is also so admitted. Next witness. Any of the documents that have
2 been admitted have been admitted on this condition, namely that if a
3 translation does not exist already, then they will be marked for
4 identification purposes only for the time being pending translation
5 thereof. So that is to be understood. Thank you.
6 [The witness entered court]
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning, Mr. Grulovic.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: And welcome to this Tribunal.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: You've been summoned as a Defence witness by the
12 accused Beara. Before you give evidence, however, we require from you an
13 undertaking, a solemn undertaking that you will be testifying the truth.
14 The undertaking is formulated in the document that is going to be handed
15 to you now. Please read out that statement aloud, and that will be your
16 solemn undertaking with us.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
18 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Grulovic. Please take a seat;
20 make yourself comfortable.
21 Mr. Ostojic is going to put a series of questions to you first.
22 You will then be followed by others on cross-examination.
23 Mr. Ostojic.
24 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Mr. President. Good morning.
25 WITNESS: BRANIMIR GRULOVIC
1 [Witness answered through interpreter]
2 Examination by Mr. Ostojic:
3 Q. Good morning, Mr. Grulovic. As you know, my name is John
4 Ostojic, and I am one of the attorneys who represents Ljubisa Beara.
5 A. Good morning.
6 Q. For the record, can you please state your fall name?
7 A. My name is a Branimir Grulovic. My nickname is Bata Grulovic.
8 That's what my friends call me. Should I provide any other personal
9 details? I was born in Belgrade
10 by elementary and high school there, and I went to theatre, TV, drama
11 school in Zagreb
12 journalism studies, and I have an MA degree from TV and video production.
13 I am married, and I have four children -- three children. That's me.
14 Q. Thank you, Mr. Grulovic. I'll put some questions to you, sir,
15 and then you'll answer my questions, but thank you for that brief
16 background. So just so the record is clear on the transcript, I note on
17 page 3, line 22, that they are still maintaining yesterday's witness, but
18 I'm sure we can clarify that.
19 Mr. Grulovic, can you share with us a little bit more in detail.
20 You say that you were a journalist or you completed journalistic studies.
21 Can you tell us in your employment history but briefly, we don't want to
22 spend too much time on it, and take us up to and through the year 1995
23 during the war. In what capacity were you employed and with whom?
24 JUDGE AGIUS: If you are interested in a particular phase, then
25 you can -- you have our authority to lead.
1 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
2 Q. Mr. Grulovic, let me then restate the question. We'll start --
3 and we'll get into some of your background because I know it's actually
4 quite interesting having met you, but we are focusing on a specific time
5 period here. Can you tell us from 1991 to 1995 approximately with whom
6 you were employed?
7 A. Between 1991 and 1995, I worked in WIS news. That's Reuters TV,
8 and from 1992 until 1997 - that includes the year 1995 - I was the head
9 of the Reuters Balkans office, Reuters TV office for the Balkans. And if
10 we are talking about the Balkans, that's not Balkans in geopolitical
11 terms because -- yeah.
12 Q. I'll clarify that, Mr. Grulovic. I know we are getting a little
13 ahead of ourselves, but I just want to stick with that period that you
14 gave me from 1992 to 1997. You say that you were chief of the -- for
15 Reuters for the Balkan area, but were you not the bureau chief for the
16 section called Balkans from 1992 to 1997? Would that be accurate?
17 A. That's correct. From 1992 until 1997, I was the bureau chief for
18 the Balkan section of the Reuters, and we were headquartered in Belgrade
19 Q. Bear with me. Just tell us what a bureau chief means or what
20 your job duties and responsibilities were while you were bureau chief for
22 A. Well, you can safely assume what my duties and responsibilities
23 were, but to put it quite simply I was responsible for all the Reuters TV
24 operations in the area of Croatia
25 or rather, the Republika Srpska, Serbia
2 that occurred in this area were within my jurisdiction. I had to set up
3 teams. I sometimes had to go to the field myself to cover the events and
4 to inform the world public to send the stuff that I did to London
5 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters kindly ask the witness to
6 speak a little bit slowly.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Grulovic -- I leave you, Mr. Ostojic, to
8 explain to him how the system works here and what the problems could be
9 if you overlap and you speak -- or he speaks too fast.
10 MR. OSTOJIC: I'll do that.
11 Q. Mr. Grulovic, having been here for a couple of years, I've been
12 advised about myself that I speak too fast. So we've tried to slow it
13 down, and I know that everybody everyone when they take the witness stand
14 can be a tad bit nervous, and please, just relax, and we are going to ask
15 you a couple of questions. As you may realize, there are many people
16 here who are translating and interpreting your words into both B/C/S as
17 well as into English and French, so be patient. If you can look at the
18 screen before you, when you see that the cursor stops, you can proceed
19 with your answer when you hear the full question. Similarly, I'll pay
20 attention to the screen, and I'll try to do the same. So just allow me
21 to put the question to you, and you'll share with us as much information
22 as you know. Would that be acceptable to you, sir?
23 A. Yes. I do apologise, Your Honours, for speaking too fast.
24 Q. Thank you. I'm sure it's okay with Your Honours. Thank you,
25 Mr. President.
1 Sir, you tried to mention earlier in your testimony that you when
2 you defined the Balkan, it wasn't the geopolitical sphere of Balkan, and
3 I apologise for having to cut you off, and then I think you touched upon
4 it now. When you were the bureau chief for the Balkans, and we talked
5 about what your responsibilities were as the bureau chief, now tell us
6 how would you describe the territory or area that you covered that has
7 been identified or coined by Reuters as the Balkans wherein you were the
8 bureau chief.
9 A. The area that I covered included those territories in Croatia
10 that were Serb-controlled, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Again, the areas that
11 were controlled by Serbs: Serbia
12 state, Macedonia
13 that I covered in my reports, and I was responsible for covering the
14 developments there.
15 Q. Okay. A similar question, if I may. What territories did you
16 not cover that one may traditionally feel or think that were -- come
17 under the auspices of the Balkans?
18 A. Well, I did not cover for security reasons - that was a decision
19 of our central office in London
20 were controlled by the Bosniak forces, and in Croatia I did not cover
21 areas that were an integral part of the Republic of Croatia
22 not Serb-controlled.
23 Q. So that would mean, for example, Sarajevo; you did not cover
25 A. I did not cover Sarajevo
2 Q. Now, if I may with the Court's permission show you 2D547, which
3 is a list of foreign reporters in former Yugoslavia. Just to take a look
4 at it, it's a lengthy document, but I'm going too direct your attention
5 specifically to page 14 of that document, and it should be in e-court,
6 again, under number 2D547.
7 Mr. Grulovic, you let me know when you have that first page of
8 that document in front of you on the screen.
9 A. Yes, I do have it on my screen.
10 Q. Thank you. It's not the first page that we have on the screen.
11 It's page 14, which I think is just as acceptable. If we can just scroll
12 the paper down to the latter half of that page, and you'll see there,
13 sir, in the caption which is underlined which says "Reuters TV." Do you
14 see that? Do you see that, sir? Mr. Grulovic, are you able to hear me?
15 A. [In English] Yes.
16 Q. Okay. Do you see under the Reuters TV section, is your name
17 anywhere on that list?
18 A. [Interpretation] Let me see. Yes, I see it. It's listed under
20 Q. Can you just generally tell us, who are the other people that
21 follow your name under number 1? Who are these other individuals, in a
22 general sense? Were they assistants, camera men, other journalists,
23 reporters? Who were they?
24 A. I'll take it in order. Dragomir Dragas is listed under 2.
25 Q. Thank you, Mr. Grulovic. Just generally speaking. I don't need
1 -- I don't really need to know specifically.
2 A. Generally speaking, these were all cameramen, producers, but
3 there is a mistake. The name is not Gerald Moser. It's Gerald Williams
4 Moser. That was his middle name. He is listed under 5.
5 Q. And just a little more -- thank you for that. Just a little more
6 background so we can get a feeling for what you did. You mentioned
7 during your direct -- or during your answers here this morning that you
8 reported to London
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And this is during that entire period from 1992 through 1997
11 while you were bureau chief for Reuters; is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And share with us, if you will, the day-to-day activities of a
14 bureau chief. What are some of the things that you would do? I mean,
15 you would hunt down a story; you would follow a story; you'd -- what
16 would you do during that time period?
17 A. Well, it's an interesting question. The daily activities boil
18 down, first of all, to learning what is happening in the field and then
19 analyzing the news coming in, the reports coming in from the field, and
20 then we had to respond professionally, to decide whether to cover an
21 event or not to cover an event. That meant that we had to decide whether
22 would we would send a team to an area, and in many cases I would
23 accompany those teams. I can say that I went there much too often
24 because that's not the usual practice for bureau chiefs.
25 Q. During your time as a bureau chief while being in the Balkan as a
1 Balkan area bureau chief, did you have an opportunity to meet some of the
2 political and military figures that were involved in the war that was
3 going on in Bosnia
4 A. Yes. I met some of the persons quite often, both in the military
5 and in the civilian authorities; in other words, politicians.
6 Q. Did you -- and I know it's in the news last night and this
7 morning. Did you ever have an opportunity to meet or observe Dr. Radovan
9 A. Yes, of course.
10 Q. And can you tell us, sir, were you able to -- during that tenure
11 from 1992 to 1997 and prior to that time period while you were a news
12 journalist and bureau chief, were you able to assess or determine what
13 the dynamics were between the Serb nationalists and the former JNA
14 officers, former JNA military officers? Were you able to get a feel for
15 what that dynamic was, if any?
16 A. I built this feel as time went by; but in brief, I don't think
17 that there was a lot of trust between the politicians and the military
18 figures. Why did I reach this conclusion? Because I often heard some
19 politicians term the army officers "commies," and that's a derogatory
20 term for former members of the JNA because we had all grown up in a
21 socialist system, they as well as I, and it simply did not make the
22 politicians trust those officers.
23 Q. Can you tell me, we spoke about having known or met Dr. Karadzic;
24 did you ever have the opportunity and occasion to meet Mr. Ljubisa Beara?
25 A. Yes, several times in fact.
1 Q. We'll get into those specifics, and thank you for bearing with
2 me. Did you learn at any time whether or not Mr. Beara was a former JNA
4 A. I didn't learn that. I knew that from before because I served in
5 the JNA, and I knew -- or rather, at that time I didn't know Mr. Beara,
6 but I knew that he had been in the Yugoslav People's Army.
7 Q. Now, having met and spent significant -- or some time in the
8 Balkans and in Pale and other areas in Bosnia, were you able, sir, to
9 determine or did you ever do a news story in connection with promotions
10 of certain officers who were politically parallel with the ideology of
11 Dr. Karadzic?
12 A. Not reports of stories to that effect, but I had an opportunity
13 to talk to people many times, and I came to realize that some officers -
14 don't, please, ask me about their names because I can't recall them;
15 that's a big problem with me; I can't remember names - were ideologically
16 quite close to the policy advocated by Mr. Karadzic. But this policy was
17 a hard-line nationalist policy, which was different to what other
18 officers I knew advocated, including Colonel Beara. Those were people
19 who had been brought up and who genetically were in favour of tolerance
20 and what we called the brotherhood and unit because at one point they had
21 all taken an oath to defend brotherhood and unity.
22 Q. Okay. Well, Mr. --
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey.
24 MR. MCCLOSKEY: If we can try to get a time frame for these sorts
25 of things.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Mr. Ostojic.
2 MR. OSTOJIC: We will, Your Honour. Thank you.
3 Q. You mentioned in your answer to my rather broad question that you
4 are not good with names, but sir, you do remember some instances where
5 there were promotions of some officers and demotions of others, such as,
6 let's say, Vasiljevic or Grujic, do you not? Do you have a recollection
7 of that?
8 A. [No interpretation]
9 Q. Okay. Can you be a little specific to the best of your
10 recollection as to when that happened, and if you have to break it down,
11 before or after 1992 or 1994, whatever period you want or whatever period
12 you recall, can you give us an indication of when certain officers were
13 demoted, to the best of your recollection, and when others who were
14 parallel ideologues with Mr. Karadzic were, indeed, promoted?
15 A. Thank you for reminding me. I was present when there was
16 reshuffle in the command of the 2nd Krajina corps in the command; that's
17 Western Bosnia, the 2nd Krajina corps, and then General Grujic, if I
18 remember correctly, I think that was his name, he was replaced by another
19 officer. And the Chief of Staff in the same corps was also replaced at
20 the same time, General Mica Vlaisavljevic - I hope I remember his name
21 correctly - and another officer was appointed to that post. I think
22 talking about General Mica Vlaisavljevic, since I had an opportunity to
23 have a lengthy conversation with him, I think that he was replaced as a
24 direct consequence of this misunderstanding or conflict that we were
25 speaking about a little while earlier.
1 Q. Let's help the Prosecutor here a little bit, although I think he
2 has the information. What period of time was this, sir? Was this before
3 or after 1995, for example?
4 A. Before 1995. Let's say that was towards the end of 1994, in the
5 winter of 1994 or maybe the beginning of 1995. I can't tell you
6 precisely, but in any case it was during the winter, and it was either
7 towards the end of it or the beginning -- the beginning of it.
8 Q. And thank you, Mr. Grulovic. I don't know that we need any more
9 specificity unless you have it other than that. Now, sir, you mentioned
10 the 2nd Krajina corps. Can you describe for us where that is? I know
11 you said it was in the western part of Bosnia. Could you be more
12 specific by identifying the town or a town that's near that area?
13 A. I don't know much about the area of responsibility of the 2nd
14 corps, but when we're talking about towns this was in the area of
15 Petrovac and Drvar and also Grahovo. Those would be the bigger
16 settlements in the area of that corps as far as I can remember. The
17 command of the 2nd Krajina corps was on the mountain pass called Ostrelj
18 between the towns of Petrovac and Drvar.
19 Q. That's all we needed. I'm not asking you to become a military
20 witness here and tell us what their zone of responsibility may have been
21 but just the Drvar and Petrovac area is adequate for us for this time.
22 Can you tell me, sir, from 1992 and 1995, was there any activity
23 from your prospective as a TV journalist, any activity in that area in
24 the western front of Bosnia
25 A. Yes, of course there were activities, but 1994 was more
1 interesting for the media because it was the first time when we actually
2 started covering the area when the Bosnian forces launched their
3 offensive from Bihac in the direction of Petrovac, and when this
4 offensive was launched, Mr. Karadzic as the president of Republika Srpska
5 for the first time in one part of the territory of Republika Srpska
6 proclaimed the state of war, which was also very interesting for the
7 media because by then the war had been going on for awhile, and that was
8 the first time when it was actually officially proclaimed as the state of
10 Q. And sir, you were there to cover that story, correct?
11 A. I was there, and I assume that all the people in this courtroom
12 have seen the footage of Mr. Karadzic wearing a uniform for the first
13 time. This is my own footage, and I interviewed Mr. Karadzic at the
14 time. It is a well known image that has travelled the world several
15 times over.
16 Q. And I haven't asked you about some of your accomplishments yet,
17 sir, but what I would like to do is to -- from my understanding as a
18 journalist you either can break a story, and that would be significant,
19 or as some journalists say, they miss a story, and that's as we say in
21 journalists consider to be significant?
22 A. Of course. Of course. We were always in competition with our
23 competitors. Obviously, it was a big professional success if you break a
24 piece of big news. Maybe my previous words sounded a bit like
25 self-promotion, but this was not my intention. I just wanted to draw the
1 attention of the Trial Chamber to the fact that the footage that I
2 mentioned proves that I was there during that period of time.
3 Q. I don't know that anybody is going to doubt that, but thank you
4 for that, and we appreciate that.
5 What I'd like to ask you now, sir, before we get into some more
6 specific issues is, just describe for us because there were many
7 journalists there - we've had a couple testify here; we have a few other
8 that may -- will come - just tell -- give us an idea of how accessible it
9 was for news reporters and journalists to come to the Bosnia area to
10 report the developments of the war. Who, if anyone, allowed journalists
11 to gain access to those fronts or those areas?
12 A. The International Press Centre headquartered in Pale had the
13 exclusive right to grant those permissions, and the head of that press
14 centre was Ms. Sonja Karadzic.
15 Q. Obviously given -- sorry, please.
16 A. I just wanted to add that the lady in question is Mr. Karadzic's
18 Q. Thank you. What role to the extent that you know did the
19 military play in allowing or permitting access to news journalists in the
21 A. If you wanted to enter Republika Srpska, you did not have to talk
22 to the military. They did not have any rights to issue permits. This
23 was the exclusive purview of the International Press Centre, and the
24 procedure was as follows: You had to submit a written request, you
25 waited for a reply, and when you were given access in a written form, it
1 was only then that you were able to travel to Republika Srpska.
2 Q. Now, in 1995, specifically July, sir, do you have a specific
3 recollection as to where you were in the former -- in Bosnia and
5 approximate location?
6 A. Not approximately. I can tell you exactly that during that
7 period of time, I was in the zone of responsibility of the 2nd Krajina
8 corps in Petrovac and Drvar. Actually, I was in the command of the 2nd
9 Krajina corps on Mount Ostrelj
10 Q. As we know just from the public records and other indictments
11 that are alleged, there was this operation -- or spring offensive that
12 was being conducted during that time. Do you remember that at all? Is
13 that correct?
14 A. I don't know exactly what the name was. I believe it was
15 offensive summer rather than offensive winter. It is true that I arrived
16 in the area, but the situation was somewhat different from the rest of
17 Republika Srpska. Ms. Karadzic had forbidden me to go to Republika
18 Srpska for some personal reasons of hers. Not only did she stop me but
19 also the Reuters teams and crews.
20 Q. And we'll talk about that in a second or two, sir. I'm just
21 trying to get to you a certain place to the best of your recollection.
22 And if we look at it on a timeline, as I think we've agreed and as the
23 news has carried, if you look at the events that start to unfold in
24 Srebrenica when Srebrenica fell, generally speaking, without tying any
25 date that the Prosecution may not wish to agree to, we say approximately
1 on the 11th of July, 1995, Srebrenica fell. Do you remember that date,
2 sir? It's of significance, and you as a news journalist may or may not,
3 but do you remember that date, the day that Srebrenica fell?
4 A. My simple answer would be, yes, I do remember.
5 Q. Let's try to keep it simple for the time being. Thank you for
6 that, sir.
7 Now, can you tell us where you were on or about the time that you
8 learned that Srebrenica fell in July of 1995.
9 A. I was -- I can't give you the name of the place, but it was in
10 the zone of responsibility of the 2nd Krajina corps, and the facility was
11 as it was called then a forward command post, but I wouldn't be able to
12 give you the exact name of that location. Don't ask me because I simply
13 can't remember.
14 Q. Fair enough. You are doing just fine by giving us that you were
15 in the 2nd Krajina corps, and we know that that's in Western Bosnia near
16 Drvar, and we'll get to that in a second. It's a significant -- was it
17 significant for you, sir, for a number of reasons having known that you
18 heard the news from other journalists, your competitors, that Srebrenica
19 fell and you were not there to cover the story or to break the story? Is
20 that also why you have such a recollection as to where you were on that
21 given time?
22 MR. MCCLOSKEY: Objection, leading.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, it is leading, Mr. Ostojic. Please rephrase
24 your question.
25 MR. OSTOJIC: Fair enough. I'll rephrase the question.
1 Q. Sir, can you share with us why you know or how you know and how
2 you can recall that you were in the 2nd Krajina corps during the time
3 that Srebrenica fell?
4 A. The question calls for a bit lengthier answer if you will allow
5 me to provide some more explanation by way of answering the question.
6 First of all, I remember the date because around that time was the time
7 of my summer holiday. My summer holiday was approaching. That's how I
8 know that it was July because according to the work schedule, as soon as
9 I returned to Belgrade
10 The news on the fall of Srebrenica obviously put my annual leave
11 in question for professional reasons, and I learned about the fall of
12 Srebrenica on the radio. I always carried a small UKT radio with me all
13 the time in order to be able to listen to the world news. The
14 communications at the time were not what they are today, and very often
15 that small radio was my only way of communicating with the world.
16 Obviously, for professional reasons I wanted to be able to confirm that
17 piece of news from the sources close to the Republika Srpska army, and
18 given my personal acquaintance and -- with and the presence of Colonel
19 Beara, I obviously approached him, asking him whether he could either
20 confirm or deny the news.
21 Q. Now, Mr. Grulovic, we are going to get into that a little bit
22 later. I'm just trying to at least now get an idea of where you were at
23 that significant moment in history, and we'll get into that specifically.
24 Thank you for reminding me.
25 Sir, what I'd like to know is just from practical standpoint.
1 Here you are, a newsman on the western front, and on the opposite side by
2 the Drina
3 story occurring. Did you go directly from the 2nd Krajina corps area to
4 Srebrenica with your team in order to cover the Srebrenica story, if you
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, one moment. Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, where did you go. This is leading on
8 this topic. I think we should go traditionally.
9 MR. OSTOJIC: You know, I could ask him that. Obviously he has
10 heard the question, Mr. President. I think -- it's incorrect. I mean,
11 if you look at the question, we are certainly -- he's -- I could ask it
12 if he wants in that fashion.
13 Q. Sir, where, if anywhere, did you go from the 2nd Krajina corps
14 after you learned that Srebrenica fell?
15 A. Obviously, I headed for Belgrade
17 Q. I'll ask you the question so that we don't have any more --
18 A. Very well then. My answer would be I headed for Belgrade then.
19 Q. Thank you, Mr. Grulovic, for being patient with me. Why didn't
20 you go directly to Srebrenica from the 2nd Krajina corps? Why did you go
21 to Belgrade
22 A. The reason was simple. The press centre had never allowed me to
23 go to Western Bosnia and be in the zone of the 2nd Krajina corps, so if I
24 had turned up there, I would have put myself at risk of being arrested,
1 Q. Okay. So let's just walk through this before we get to your
2 discussion with Mr. Beara in the 2nd Krajina corps at the time that
3 Srebrenica fell. You leave from the 2nd Krajina corps to go to Belgrade
4 so that you can do what, if anything, sir? Because you mentioned the
5 holiday there. Were you trying to regain access into Bosnia?
6 A. I have to explain how I had arrived in the zone of responsibility
7 of the 2nd Krajina corps in the first place.
8 Q. Why don't you do that. How did you arrive to the 2nd Krajina
9 corps in the first place?
10 A. At the time, there was already a ban on me entering the territory
11 of Republika Srpska, and the ban was issued by the International Press
12 Centre. I insisted on a permit, but every time I did the response was
13 negative. They would always deny me access, and I even received
14 information that my name was made known at all the border crossings and
15 that there was a strict ban on my entering the territory of Republika
17 Q. Sir, can you share with us who implemented or imposed this strict
18 ban on you, and I presume, but you can tell us, was that a ban on Reuters
19 as well?
20 A. Yes. The measure was imposed by the International Press Centre,
21 or rather, Ms. Sonja Karadzic as the head of the press centre; and the
22 ban did not apply only to me personally but unfortunately to all the
23 crews, all the Reuters crews that were based and working from Belgrade
24 And as for the local Reuters team members that were working from Pale,
25 their movements were also restricted pursuant to the order of the
1 International Press Centre, i.e., Ms. Sonja Karadzic.
2 Q. And sir, just so I'm understanding you, you then were in that
3 sense a news -- TV news reporter who was in the former Bosnia without
4 proper credentialed authorisation from Ms. Sonja Karadzic, and therefore
5 at that time you returned to Belgrade
6 Srebrenica had fallen? Is that right?
7 A. Yes, that's correct.
8 Q. Now, just so I have a better appreciation for what you do, do
9 you, sir, have local support staff who assist you in various parts of
10 different areas, such as the western and eastern areas of a republic or
12 A. Yes. I had teams in Pale, and I had teams in Banja Luka and
13 certain towns, and I had a team in the area of responsibility of the 2nd
14 Krajina corps.
15 Q. As a bureau chief, sir, you would over the course in the years in
16 having been a journalist, you would develop these contacts and you would
17 maintain those contacts and use them when the need arose depending on
18 where the news story was breaking. Is that the way it essentially
20 A. Of course. You have to have contacts. You can't function in
21 professional terms without any contacts.
22 Q. Okay. So now, just take us briefly when you were in Belgrade
23 after the fall of Srebrenica; what if anything did you do? Did you go on
24 this holiday, or did you try to gain access to Srebrenica?
25 A. Of course I tried to gain access to Srebrenica, but there was no
1 chance in hell for me to get credentials from the International Press
2 Centre. I was turned down, in no uncertain terms, very rudely. I spoke
3 to Ms. Karadzic personally over the phone, and she was very rude,
4 bad-mannered, using certain words and terms not really becoming of a
5 lady. And in my desperation to have to talk to a person like that, a
6 person who was in a high position, I sent a letter to the Chief of Staff
7 of the Army of Republika Srpska and to Mr. Karadzic, the president of
8 Republika Srpska to --
9 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- to Mr. Krajisnik, the speaker of
11 the parliament, asking them to allow them to perform my duties
13 MR. OSTOJIC:
14 Q. And sir, can you give us an idea to the extent that you know or
15 were ever told, did Ms. Karadzic, Sonja Karadzic, restrict and forbid you
16 access to Bosnia
17 restrict it because you were providing news stories in favour of the
18 Serbs, or do you know if at all how -- why it was restriction?
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: The last part of the question is, if you know,
21 why do you think she forbade you, but the other parts --
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
23 MR. OSTOJIC: I'm just trying to move it along. I'll ask it in
24 the general sense, and I can appreciate his comment on that. So if I
25 may, Mr. President.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. In any case, he has heard the question
2 now --
3 MR. OSTOJIC: I know.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: -- and whichever way you rephrase it, I think he
5 knows what the sort of question he is expected to answer.
6 MR. OSTOJIC: Sure.
7 Q. Did you ever learn, Mr. Grulovic, or have an appreciation as to
8 why Sonja Karadzic restricted Reuters and yourself from covering news
9 during this 1992-through-1995 period?
10 A. Yes. Sonja told me that personally in that telephone
11 conversation. Allegedly, it was because of my very close ties with the
12 Army of Republika Srpska, allegedly, and she also mentioned some other
13 reasons which are of no relevance whatsoever for my testimony today.
14 Q. Now, can you share with us whether there were any restrictions by
15 the various military or, as you say, the army of you reporting anything
16 that you wanted to? Did they tell you you can report certain things and
17 you couldn't report others? How did it work?
18 A. In a nutshell, the answer would be there were no restrictions
19 whatsoever or hindrances on behalf of any member of the Republika Srpska
20 army. I did not experience any such things either personally or any
21 member of my crew.
22 Q. Let me ask you a general question; then we'll try to get to some
23 of the more specific issues that I'd like to address with you.
24 At any time during this period, and specifically in 1994 and
25 1995, were you, sir, ever criticized by Serbs for relaying too much
1 information or not -- tainting the story in the favour of the Serbs or
2 not? Were you ever criticized or any criticisms asserted against you,
4 A. I can say that I published a lot of stories which were then
5 portrayed as anti-Serbian. However, my excuse was the fact that I am
6 familiar and I was familiar with the mentality of these people because I
7 belonged to that people myself, that they never showed any anger towards
8 such stories if they thought that they were truthful. They would always
9 react if the truth was distorted or being manipulated, so I could use the
10 fact that I was familiar with the mentality of my -- of the members of my
11 ethnic group, and I published things as they were. They would criticize
12 me sometimes using swear words, which was part of our folklore, but then
13 they would say -- they would add to that, but everything is just as you
14 published it, and that was the long and the short of the whole thing.
15 Q. Thank you for that, sir. Now, let me ask you about Mr. Beara.
16 You had mentioned during this morning's portion of your testimony that
17 you have known him and you know him. Can you share with us how long you
18 have known Mr. Beara?
19 A. I met Mr. Beara by pure chance at the very beginning of the war
20 in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and during the war I saw him on several
21 occasions. I mostly saw him far from where military operations were
22 actually taking place.
23 Q. And I'm not sure if you've completed your answer. I apologise.
24 A. Well, that would be the essence of my answer. I don't think that
25 there is any need for me to elaborate on that.
1 Q. I wanted to make sure, thank you for that.
2 Now, sir, you also mentioned specifically Mr. Beara, having seen
3 him when you heard the news that Srebrenica fell. Do you remember that?
4 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection. That's not what he said, and that's
6 MR. OSTOJIC: Okay.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Rephrase it.
8 MR. OSTOJIC: I will rephrase it.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
10 MR. OSTOJIC:
11 Q. Sir, do you have a recollection of seeing Mr. Beara at all
12 immediately prior to the time that Srebrenica fell?
13 A. Yes, and I've already said that. I said it at the beginning of
14 my testimony. I saw him in the area of responsibility of the 2nd Krajina
16 Q. And that's okay. We'll cover it again, and I thought you did as
17 well. Can you tell me, sir, did you see him face to face?
18 A. Yes, of course. How else?
19 Q. Okay. Did you, sir, at that time speak to him at all?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Bear with us to the best of your recollection that conversation
22 that you had with Mr. Beara.
23 A. If we're to --
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, please. Mr. McCloskey.
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: If we could get some kind of time frame. There's
2 a lot of time before Srebrenica fell. I mean, are we talking 1994, 1993?
3 I mean, let's get to some time frames here.
4 MR. OSTOJIC: And I think Mr. McCloskey certainly knows given my
5 proofing notes, but I think that he can't quite frankly have his cake and
6 eat it too. If he doesn't allow me to lead, I will go more specific with
7 it, and I think the witness in his prior two --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Let's not make a mountain out of a mole
10 MR. OSTOJIC: And I'll ask him directly that. We'll put a
11 specific time frame on it, and I don't mind that at all. In fact, I
12 think it's important.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
14 MR. McCLOSKEY: Mr. President, there is a serious issue regarding
15 the proofing note and the lack of information, and there's nothing about
16 this in the proofing note. So we can get into this in greater detail --
17 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't intend to stir up a whole argument on this.
18 Just put your question within the framework, a time framework, please.
19 MR. OSTOJIC: I will.
20 Q. Sir, I think we can all agree that Srebrenica fell on July 11th,
21 1995. Do you recall seeing Mr. Beara on or about that date when you
22 learned that Srebrenica fell?
23 A. Yes, I can confirm that. I've already answered this question.
24 At the time when Srebrenica fell, I saw Mr. Beara and I spoke to him.
25 Q. And just tell us where you were when you saw and spoke to
1 Mr. Beara at the time that Srebrenica fell.
2 A. Well, I've replied already, but let me repeat. In the area of
3 responsibility of the 2nd Krajina corps, that would be Western Bosnia.
4 Q. Can you share with us the contents of that specific conversation
5 that we are talking about, which was the day that Srebrenica fell where
6 you saw Mr. Beara face to face and had this conversation? Can you share
7 with us to the best of your recollection what was said by you and from
8 Mr. Beara?
9 A. I think I can. It was approximately at the time when I learned
10 about the fall of Srebrenica. Naturally, I immediately sought to confirm
11 the news, and I used the fact that I knew Colonel Beara, and I asked him
12 if he could confirm or deny that or if he could provide some more
13 information, and his response was quite short. He said, I myself don't
14 know anything about that.
15 Q. And what did you do after that, sir, if anything?
16 A. I tried to call my house in Belgrade over the phone. I had some
17 difficulties, and then I decided to return to Belgrade as soon as
18 possible and to launch the proceedings to obtain permission to go to that
19 part of the frontline.
20 Q. And as you told us, you left that 2nd Krajina Corps to go to
22 helicopter? What means of transportation did you utilize to go from the
23 2nd Krajina Corps to Belgrade
24 A. Well, to answer that question I would first have to tell you how
25 I managed to get into the area of the 2nd Krajina corps. Since there was
1 this ban, I was prohibited from entering Republika Srpska. This ban was
2 put in place by Ms. Karadzic, the international bureau at Pale, in other
3 words; and since there were interesting things going on from the media
4 point of view - I talking about the summer offensive - I sought
5 assistance from the Army of Republika Srpska, and the Army of Republika
6 Srpska sent a military jeep with two military police officers to
8 took me to the area of responsibility of the 2nd Krajina corps.
9 And I spent some time there, with their blessing, and I also have
10 to say with some degree of protection that they accorded me. And I went
11 back to Belgrade
12 police officers who again smuggled me across the border and took me back
13 to Belgrade
14 It is not difficult to assume that -- or to guess that this was
15 organised by the army with the blessing of all those officers who might
16 be responsibile for such an operation. First of all, I'm talking about
17 the security service.
18 Q. Okay. Did you ever, sir, obtain access to go to the Srebrenica
19 enclave or in that area to cover any of the news that was unfolding at
20 that time, July of 1995, subsequent, of course, to the fall of the 11th
21 of July, 1995, and that's the time period I'm asking you about.
22 A. I personally did not get the permission, but many days later -
23 now I can't recall the date, but it was perhaps late July, early August -
24 a Reuters team from Pale was granted permission to go to the Srebrenica
25 area. But I remember quite well that this was not what we had expected,
1 in professional terms, and this leads one to conclude that they did not
2 get permission to move about freely unlike some other teams that were
4 Q. Now -- and we'll get back to this meeting or the time that you
5 saw Mr. Beara at the date that Srebrenica fell in a little bit, but let
6 me ask you this: Prior to July of 1995, you had an occasion, as you told
7 us, to meet Mr. Beara. Did you ever have an occasion to assist him in
8 making any telephone calls or using the Reuters satellite phones?
9 A. Yes. That was again in the area of responsibility of the 2nd
10 Krajina Corps, which is where I was with my teams. We were fully
11 equipped, and we had satellite phones.
12 Q. And can you -- to the best of your recollection, do you recall
13 whether or not Mr. Beara at any time requested to use the Reuters
14 satellite phone for any purpose?
15 A. Mr. Beara did not ask for that, but I offered to him this
16 opportunity to call his family because I knew that he and many others
17 whose families were far away had not seen them for a long time, and it
18 was impossible to establish contact if one didn't have a satellite phone.
19 Colonel Beara then called his mother. At that time, she was living in
21 impressed me and I was touched, I was moved emotionally, was the fact
22 that Colonel Beara called his mother "Nona." It's a typical word from
23 the Dalmatian dialect, and he asked about her health, her security
24 situation, too, knowing that the Croats knew full well where he was, and
25 yet his mother was there in Split
1 didn't speak after that conversation, but it was my impression that
2 Colonel Beara was quite sure that no one would harm his mother, which was
3 quite surprising for me because I knew all about the relations between
4 Serbs and Croats.
5 This conversation between Colonel Beara and his mother lasted for
6 a short time, but in terms of emotions and the emotional messages that
7 were exchanged, I think it had great significance both for Colonel Beara
8 and for his mother.
9 Q. Thank you for sharing that with us, sir.
10 Do you recall any other instance in which Mr. Beara at -- either
11 you allowing him to or inviting him to use the Reuters satellite phone
12 sometime after this phone conversation with his mother in Split
13 before the fall of Srebrenica, that time period so we don't go too broad,
14 do you remember that he utilized the phone at any other time, in your
15 presence, of course?
16 A. I do remember this, but it was not Colonel Beara who used the
17 phone. He was present there when I offered a young officer of the
18 Republika Srpska army to use the phone.
19 Q. And can you help us to narrow the date down? Do you know when it
20 was? And not specifically the -- necessarily the day, but if you could
21 give us a month or a year, to the best of your recollection.
22 A. Well, these are striking events, and it is much more -- much
23 easier to remember them. That was in the spring and the summer of 1995.
24 Q. And sir, this officer or this person, this young officer that you
25 allowed in the presence of Mr. Beara to use the Reuters satellite phone,
1 do you remember, sir, what his ethnic background was or his ethnicity?
2 A. Of course. He was a Bosniak.
3 Q. Could you remember, sir, if at all, his name or his nickname?
4 A. I can't recall his name, but his nickname was Kikan.
5 Q. Okay. Maybe I could help you with that. In looking at some of
6 -- please, go ahead.
7 A. Kikan is probably a nickname based on his last name, which might
8 have been Kikanovic, then but I can't recall his first name, really.
9 Q. In some of the documents that the Prosecution has provided to us
10 from time to time, and I'll read if I may be permitted to lead on this to
11 see if I can refresh the witness's recollection. We have in some of the
12 documents, and that's Exhibit 2D546, a name on page 24 of a gentleman
13 called Eldar Kikanovic. Does that ring a bell to you, sir?
14 A. Eldar. It's a strange name. One would think I would remember
15 it, but no, but his last name was Kikanovic. He was a Bosniak, and it's
16 quite possible that his first name was Eldar.
17 Q. Fair enough. Can you share with us to the best of your
18 recollection that telephone call that this young officer called Kikan
19 made. Do you remember to whom he made it and what was said during that
21 A. Yes. As I said, it's much easier to remember those emotionally
22 charged things than perhaps some others. In our presence, Kikan called
23 his parents. They lived in Tuzla
24 mother picked up the phone, and his mother couldn't believe that she was
25 really talking to her son because she had received information that he
1 had been killed, and he tried to convince her that he was really her son.
2 His mother refused to talk to him, persistently, and then she handed the
3 phone to his father, and then he told his father various details from his
4 childhood to convince him that it really was he. After awhile, I can't
5 remember how long it took, the father finally was convinced that he was
6 speaking to his son, and it was very, very moving. All of us present
7 there were moved, and I noticed that Colonel Beara was crying. All of us
8 who were in the room, well, we were all very moved.
9 Q. Okay. Thank you for that. Sir, I'd like if we can talk a little
10 bit about -- a little more about Mr. Beara, and you shared with us some
11 of the times that you visited or met with him and the observations that
12 you made. Can you tell us whether or not you have formulated some sort
13 of assessment or -- about the kind of person that Mr. Beara was? Were
14 you able to do that or glean that from the meetings and the times that
15 you met with him? Describe for us what type of person he was.
16 A. My impression of Colonel Beara is based to a certain extent with
17 sports. First of all, I found it easy to remember his name because his
18 last name is the same as that of Vladimir Beara. He was a famous
19 goalkeeper. He was my idol in sports, and at our first meeting, in fact,
20 this is what we discussed, whether the two were related, and I would have
21 been very happy to be able to say that I had met a relative of my sports
23 The next thing that really impressed me was his Dalmatian
24 dialect. It was always very pleasant on the ear, at least as far as I
25 was concerned. Secondly, his voice, kind of bossa -- baritone. This is
1 something that also left an impression on me. But the voice, the
2 penetrating stare, and the firm hand grip, I went beyond that; and in
3 talking to him, I also realized that there was some kind of gentleness
4 there, too, and I was able to see this in the informal conversations when
5 we talked about our children, my children, his children, my family, his
6 family, the plans, what we wanted, our wishes as men, as parents, as
8 So my impression of Colonel Beara is -- I'm not going to budge
9 from there. He is a kind person.
10 Q. And thank you for that. Now, Mr. Grulovic, I want to just ask a
11 little bit more about your background information. After 1997 when you
12 ceased being the Balkan chief for Reuters, what if anything did you do?
13 Did you work for any other organisation or entity?
14 A. For a year and a half, I worked for the Austrian state
15 television, ORF, and at that time the Austrian ambassador and the
16 international coordinator for Kosovo was Ambassador Wolfgang Petritsch,
17 and since I worked for the Austrian TV, I was in frequent contact with
18 him. At first, those were official contacts, and later on we also had
19 private contacts, and when Mr. Petric was appointed a high representative
20 for Bosnia and Herzegovina, the OHR, I was invited to become a media
21 advisor, and I accepted this offer, and I was there in 2000 and 2001.
22 Q. And after subsequent to that, sir, were you gainfully employed or
24 A. I wanted to continue. For a year after the change of the regime
25 in Belgrade
1 in Belgrade
2 engaged in TV actively. I switched to theory, and I got my MA degree,
3 and now I teach media studies in Banja Luka and Novi Sad
5 Q. Thank you, and sir, I just want to go through some documents that
6 I was hoping to go through with you. Earlier at the beginning of your
7 direct examination, we talked a little bit about the dynamics, if you
8 will, of the civilian pro- nationalists and their relationships or
9 feelings towards the former JNA officers. Did you, sir, make an
10 assessment as to whether or not that was only on a level at, let's say,
11 the Presidency or a higher level, or did you also gain an appreciation,
12 if that was true, at other levels, such as at the local level?
13 A. Well, I like to say that those were crazy times, and I think they
14 really were. Of course, at grass-root level among the people there were
15 those who were for and those who were against, but if we are talking
16 about those lower levels, especially if we are talking about the ordinary
17 people, they were not preoccupied with politics. What they were really
18 concerned with is how to make a living, how to survive, how to keep what
19 can be kept, and that is why I am -- I believe that this was generated
20 from a centre and then disseminated through propaganda activities, and
21 some people bought into this propaganda, but most of the ordinary people
22 did not.
23 Q. And sir, as a TV news journalist, I understand that you obviously
24 put yourself and your staff at risk in order to allow the rest of the
25 world to see things as they have developed in a certain area. Can you
1 share with me if you were ever, aside from -- well, can you share with me
2 if you will if you were ever threatened or felt at ease at any instance
3 during the coverage of the war, and try to be as specific as possible as
4 to when that time period was.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
6 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm sure the gentleman had several threats as he
7 covered this war, but I don't see how this is relevant to our case and --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: What's the relevance?
9 MR. OSTOJIC: There was an instance, actually, from my
10 understanding in meeting with the witness that Mr. Beara was present
11 during one incident in which he -- or at least I -- he felt that he was
12 threatened, and I wanted to draw that out from him. It's certainly
13 relevant, I believe, and --
14 JUDGE AGIUS: But apart from Beara's alleged presence, how does
15 that round up relevancy-wise?
16 MR. OSTOJIC: It actually defines further how Mr. Beara is, I
17 think and I think this witness having had those contacts with him. If
18 the Court feels -- I can move on. It isn't as significant to me
19 particularly, but ...
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey, yes.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: This is the first time I heard of Beara's
23 JUDGE AGIUS: But that's what he said.
24 MR. MCCLOSKEY: Now, it may lend some relevance to him, but if he
25 can point out to me in the proofing note or the -- anything else, but I
1 still ...
2 MR. OSTOJIC: I didn't catch the last part of that.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Are you alleging that Beara, your client, did
5 something on this occasion?
6 MR. OSTOJIC: Mr. President, I'll make it easy for the
7 Prosecutor. I'll just withdraw that question --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay.
9 MR. OSTOJIC: -- and I'll just move on.
10 Q. Mr. Grulovic, thank you very much for your time, and the other
11 counsel here are going to have an opportunity to ask you questions as
12 will my learned friend from the Prosecution and possibly the Court. We
13 appreciate it very much.
14 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Mr. President. I have no further
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I think we will have a break now. We can
17 ask afterwards as well. We can do it now. Mr. Zivanovic, do you have a
18 cross-examination for this witness?
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: No, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Nikolic?
21 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] No, thank you, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Lazarevic?
23 MR. LAZAREVIC: None whatsoever.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Fauveau?
25 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] No, Mr. President.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Krgovic?
2 MR. KRGOVIC: I'll have some questions, Your Honour. It would
3 take less than half an hour, so ...
4 JUDGE AGIUS: So we'll have -- and Mr. Haynes, I take it you
5 don't have any questions, do you?
6 MR. HAYNES: I don't.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: There is a mistake in the transcript, line 11. I'm
8 supposed to have said Mr. Sarapa. I never mentioned Mr. Sarapa. I asked
9 Mr. Krgovic, and we don't have Mr. Krgovic there. We have Mr. Sarapa
10 instead. That should be corrected, and the first part of his answer is
11 missing too. He said that he has got a few questions.
12 All right. Do you agree we have a break now? 25 minutes. Thank
14 --- Recess taken at 10.25 a.m.
15 --- On resuming at 10.58 a.m.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Krgovic.
17 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
18 Cross-examination by Mr. Krgovic:
19 Q. Good morning, Mr. Grulovic. My name is a Dragan Krgovic, and on
20 behalf of General Gvero's Defence team I'm going to ask you several
21 questions related to your testimony today.
22 A. Good morning.
23 Q. Since the two of us are speaking the same language - Serbian,
24 that is - I would kindly ask you to make a short break after the end of
25 my question in order to allow the interpreters to interpret that question
1 and in order to avoid overlapping.
2 As far as I could understand your testimony, in July 1995 and
3 beginning of August you were not in the territory of Republika Srpska
4 would that be correct?
5 A. In the second half of July and August, that's correct, yes.
6 Q. And this was precisely because you had not been given credentials
7 from the International Press Centre and Sonja Karadzic to enter the
8 Republika Srpska as you have explained to my learned friend?
9 A. Yes. The time I was there illegally as far as the International
10 Press Centre was concerned.
11 Q. Mr. Grulovic, I'm going to show you a document that I have come
12 across. This is a Document P3540. I'm going to explain. This is a
13 document which is an intercept, which was provided by the security
14 service of the BiH Army, and the date is 5 August 1995, this intercept
15 with a caveat that some family names are misspelled. I'm drawing your
16 attention to the first page, and I would kindly ask you to read --
17 A. Can the text be blown up a little, please.
18 Q. I have a hard copy for you, sir, so I would kindly ask the usher
19 to provide the hard copy to the witness.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, go ahead.
21 A. Thank you very much. I have it now.
22 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Sir, this is a conversation between a Colonel Stevanovic, but I
24 believe that the last name has either been misspelled or the person was
25 not a member of the Main Staff, and a certain woman by the name of Sonja,
1 and it concerns your request to be present in the territory Republika
2 Srpska and reporting from there.
3 I would like to draw your attention to the fact that this
4 paragraph starts with the words "Can you help me with something."
5 Somewhere in the middle of the page, the second paragraph. "Reuters, you
6 know, Bata Grulovic." That's how it starts. He is blocked in Belgrade
7 Could we possibly issue him with --
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Next page in English.
9 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Indeed, page 2 in English. I
10 apologise, Your Honours.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: This is a bit of a lengthy intercept. Before
12 asking him questions, could we give him a chance to read through it,
13 especially since his name is on it?
14 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't know what the question is going to be, but
15 -- what is the question going to be?
16 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] I just wanted to show the
17 intercept to the witness in order to show him that this is about his
18 attempts to enter the territory Republika Srpska and to have him confirm
19 what he remembers from the period. That would be my line of questioning
20 with regard to this document, actually.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Right. Then Witness, Mr. Grulovic, please take
22 your time and have a look at the document and read it out before you will
23 answer any further questions. You have a hard copy of it in front of
24 you, I suppose.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I've already read the
1 document that I've been provided.
2 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Did you also have a look at the second page of the document?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Could you please do that, and could you please pay attention to
6 paragraph in the middle of the page which starts with the words -- the
7 small part which starts with the word "Listen, we can convey your
9 Page 3 in English.
10 MR. McCLOSKEY: I think it's a good idea that the witness take
11 some time to read the entire document before answering questions about
12 it. It will just save misunderstandings, I think.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, that's what I suggested to the witness, but I
14 think he understood me to say that I was referring to page 1. I'm
15 referring to the entire document.
16 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Could you also please look at the third page, Mr. Grulovic, or at
18 least a part thereof.
19 Did you read it?
20 A. Yes, I did.
21 Q. Sir, it seems that this intercept confirms what you have told us
22 and that was the -- that the International Press Centre had a total media
23 control over the territory, and this International Press Centre was
24 headed by Sonja Karadzic, and would you agree with that answer?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And every journalist who wanted to enter Republika Srpska and to
2 report from there had to have that centre's approval; there was no other
3 body authorised to issue such an approval according to what you remember.
4 Would that be correct?
5 A. Yes, that's correct.
6 Q. And this applied to all journalists, not only to you?
7 A. The way I have already explained the principle was this: You had
8 to submit a request to the International Press Centre to enter Republika
9 Srpska, and it was very exclusive right to either approve the request or
10 deny it. There was nobody else who could do it instead of them.
11 Q. And I would like to draw your attention to page 3 in this
12 document, which is an intercept as we have already said. This is the
13 last page in the English version. It says that everybody has to go
14 through us with our authority, and this applies to foreign states. This
15 means that the press centre received authority from the president of the
16 state, which was Radovan Karadzic, and he was the only one who dealt with
17 those matters.
18 A. I suppose that that's correct. I'm really not familiar with the
19 organisation. I never took any particular interest in it, but only a
20 gullible person could believe that things were different given the fact
21 that it was Mr. Karadzic's daughter who was the head of that press
23 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, both of you, please. Both Mr. Grulovic
24 and Mr. Krgovic, please slow down. We who are following in English can
25 sense the stress that you are causing amongst the interpreters. Thank
2 MR. KRGOVIC: [In English] I apologise, Your Honour. I'll do my
4 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Grulovic, could you please look at the first
5 page of this document and see the way they think about you. I believe
6 that this Sonja is Sonja Karadzic from the press centre and that she
7 speaks about you, and she says, Their intentions are not honest. I
8 believe that this refers to you. Was this Ms. Sonja Karadzic's position
9 towards you and she stated that in no uncertain terms in this intercept?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'll withdraw it at this point.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Grulovic, can you answer the question, please.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can say that I had a personal
14 conflict with Ms. Karadzic concerning honesty and professionalism, but I
15 soon gave up because I had realized that all conversations with her were
16 beside the point and that all my words fell on deaf ears, and I left her
17 the freedom to draw any conclusions she wanted about my possible
18 intentions. Whether these intentions were honest and honourable doesn't
19 really matter. What mattered was whether I was a professional or not,
20 and if I was a professional, then obviously I had to have certain
21 professional integrity. It just went without saying.
22 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Mr. Grulovic, in the second half of July 1996, who did you engage
24 and who worked for Reuters television? Who reported from the zones of
25 responsibility from the 1st and 2nd Krajina corps?
1 A. In 1994, already I hired two individuals who were employed with
2 the press bureau of the 2nd Krajina Corps. Their names were Milorad
3 Zoric and Slavisa Sabljic. I equipped them with technical equipment. I
4 provided them with a camera and everything else that was necessary, which
5 also included a vehicle. I could do that only with the consent of the
6 military authorities.
7 Q. And they reported on your behalf in July and August 1995?
8 A. In practical terms, from November 1994 until the end of the war.
9 Q. Were you satisfied with the quality of their work or not?
10 A. Mr. Slavisa Sabljic was a very experienced journalist, albeit he
11 had gained all that experience working in the printed media and on the
12 radio. Anyway, he did not find it very difficult to shift to television
13 work very quickly after having received some advice.
14 Mr. Zoric is a dissectologist by profession, very well versed in
15 arts, so he was not a stranger to the work with the camera in order to
16 get a good picture. So it was very easy to explain to him how to
17 technically use the equipment that I had provided them with, and I was
18 very happy with the quality of their work.
19 Q. How professional and how objective were their reports from the
21 A. I would like to try and say to the Trial Chamber that they would
22 not have worked for me had I -- had they not been professional in their
23 work, which means I was very happy with the objectivity of their work and
24 the assessments that they made on certain events.
25 Q. Thank you very much, sir.
1 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have no further
2 questions from this witness.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Krgovic. Mr. McCloskey.
4 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 Cross-examination by Mr. McCloskey:
6 Q. Good morning, sir. Good morning, everyone. Sir, my name is
7 Peter McCloskey. I represent the Office of the Prosecution, and I'll be
8 asking you a few questions, not too many, I hope.
9 Let me stay with this intercept a bit, and I hope you've had a
10 chance to look at it because I want you to take a look at what is being
11 said here, and I think if you look at it carefully you might agree with
12 me what's going on here.
13 First of all, did you know a Lieutenant-Colonel Stevanovic, or
14 have you ever heard of anybody like that from the VRS?
15 A. I did not hear that name.
16 Q. All right. Well, it's the position of the Prosecution that this
17 intercept is a phone call from Sonja Karadzic, the person from the
18 International Press Centre, and it's actually to the VRS Main Staff to a
19 -- and they are speaking to someone named Lieutenant-Colonel Stevanovic
20 from the Main Staff, and that looking at the -- it's the 12th line down.
21 They -- it appears that the intercept people got their letters slightly
22 mixed up in the Prosecution's view and that it is Sonja Karadzic that
23 says the following: "You can help me with something." So she is calling
24 the VRS main staff, and she says, "You can help me with something.
25 Trusting the female soul, I hope that we will get this job done. Now,
1 this is what it's about, disregarding that you have an adverse point of
2 view, you know, I will try to ask you something so we get something done
3 together. Now, this is what it's about. Reuters, you know, Bata
4 Grulovic is blocked in Belgrade
5 for him, you know, and that he passes with it, but I have been here for
6 five or six days. Before that, I was up there with Talic, and I don't
7 want to go on like this. I want to go through you."
8 So she doesn't want to go through Talic. She wants to go through
9 this guy at the Main Staff. This is clearly a female because she's
10 saying "trusting the female soul." I don't know about you, but when a
11 woman says "trusting the female soul" she's trying to get something,
12 isn't she?
13 MR. MCCLOSKEY: And can we ask the peanut gallery to knock off
14 the noise? It's repeated, and everyone can hear it, and the groaning is
15 just not appreciated.
16 Q. In any event, she says "trusting the female soul," and then she
17 goes on to say that you're blocked in Belgrade and that she wants you to
18 issue a -- wants these guys to issue a pass. So then keep looking down
19 it --
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Let him finish the question, and then I will give
21 you an opportunity, of course. Yes, go ahead.
22 MR. McCLOSKEY:
23 Q. We look down it, and X, who I can suggest to you is this Main
24 Staff lieutenant-colonel, says, "You know that there's a strict order
25 from the president of the country that permits are issued only by the
1 International Press Centre." And then in our view, we go down and you
2 can read what it says, and then S, which I believe is Sonja, says, "We
3 have the collective opinion that it should be provided to him. Now they
4 complain they would like to send, you know, pictures up there,
5 et cetera." And then X, who I think is this lieutenant-colonel from the
6 Main Staff, says, "Let me ask you something. How much do you know about
7 Reuters and Bata Grulovic and their people and editors politics?" And
8 then Sonja says, "Most likely less than you, but I have the impression
9 that their intentions are honest and that" -- and then this is the Main
10 Staff colonel that says, see, "Trust me. They don't have honest
12 And then they go around and, you know, you've seen this. They
13 say a lot of bad things about you and that -- about your ego and other
14 things. So if you look at it in that perspective, it appears you've
15 misread Sonja Karadzic and that it's really the VRS Main Staff that are
16 the ones controlling the permits and have not allowed you to go to the
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you still wish to raise an objection? Mr. Josse
20 MR. JOSSE: Yes. It's an outrageous question. It's a comment.
21 It isn't really a question at all. It's a submission. How can the
22 witness seriously deal with it? And it's completely improper, in my
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Ostojic.
25 MR. OSTOJIC: I join that, Mr. President, but also, it
1 mischaracterizes what's on the face of the document, also, with
2 absolutely no basis for the Prosecution to say that he suggests there's
3 this mistake or a change of the letters. If you look at the beginning
4 part of it, it's rather clear, and I think -- I also join but -- and I
5 stress that it is -- it does call for speculation on this witness's part,
6 and hopefully he will have other evidence on it, but it is just comment
7 by the Prosecution.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: It's interesting we've switched hats on these
10 intercepts for a moment, but they in their question concluded that the
11 people that were being critical of this man were the -- was Sonja and the
12 International Press Centre, and anybody's reading of this sees that
13 that's just not right, and that's what I'm asking him about. He is in a
14 position to look at this and tell us, and am I going to get double-teamed
15 by these guys? It's not a problem, but I think Mr. Krgovic should be
16 able to speak for himself.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. One moment. Stop, stop. Yes, Mr. Ostojic.
18 MR. OSTOJIC: One last point, and thank you, Mr. President, just
19 to reply. We obviously led the witness. We didn't identify this
20 document nor let it -- the witness has testified about a personal
21 conversation he had and his impressions that he gleaned from Ms. Sonja
22 Karadzic, and this intercept, he can ask him if he wants based on that,
23 but this witness specifically had personal contacts and telephone
24 conversations with the --
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: All right, all right, all right. Come on.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Let me consult with my colleagues, please.
2 MR. OSTOJIC: Is that the peanut gallery?
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Now, for the future let's start from here. Once
5 this witness was cross-examined by Mr. Krgovic, please restrict yourself
6 to the practice that we have adopted so far. I needn't say more. As of
7 course the question itself, we think it's a very fair question
8 considering the witness's previous conclusion deriving from the content
9 of this intercept which he read. So we are authorizing the question, and
10 we are asking the witness to answer it.
11 Have you understood the question, Mr. Grulovic?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Then could you perhaps tell us whether
14 your previous answer was right or wrong or whether you could have been
15 wrong in your assessment that was it was Ms. Karadzic that was mounting
16 an opposition rather than the army?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you allow me, Your Honours, I
18 will have to be a little bit rude, and I do apologise to all the ladies
19 present in the courtroom. Mr. Prosecutor does not know Ms. Karadzic. If
20 he knew her, he would know that she doesn't have a soul, least of all a
21 female soul.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's put it lightly for one moment because
23 Ms. Karadzic is not here to defend herself. Let's moderate ourselves and
24 how we attack other people.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't want to moderate my
1 views, and I'm ready to answer any legal suits that Ms. Karadzic may
2 decide to file against me. But I state that it was Sonja Karadzic that
3 prevented me to operate professionally in Republika Srpska, and I confirm
4 that I had excellent cooperation with the Army of Republika Srpska, with
5 most of the high-ranking officers in the Army of Republika Srpska.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. You've got your answer, Mr. McCloskey.
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
8 Q. Let's go to a document that is 65 ter 3538. Sir, you read
9 English, I take it?
10 A. Yes, but I would prefer to have a document in the Serbian
11 language in front of me.
12 Q. Okay. There should be a translation. If we do have that, we'll
13 be able to give that to you. You had testified that you wrote your
14 articles and you wrote them truthfully and sometimes Serbs didn't like
15 that and they complained to you about it, but they never said that you
16 weren't writing about the truth. And so let me ask you about -- I've got
17 a -- what is a Reuters article on the Factiva Net that is dated 11
18 January 1996. Again, take your time to read it. Really about Serbs
19 fleeing Sarajevo
20 northeast Bosnia
21 first line.
22 I want to call your attention down to -- I think it's the sixth
23 paragraph, and it appears you have said, "Konjevic Polje has been a
24 virtual ghost town since its Muslim population was driven out by the
25 Bosnian Serb army, little more than a traffic control post on the road
1 between Belgrade
2 mountain valley on the Bosnian Serb bank of the Drina border with RUMP
4 Eastern Bosnia
5 Then, "Konjevic Polje is only a few miles north of Srebrenica
6 where some 4.000 unarmed Muslim prisoners of war were allegedly massacred
7 by the BSA after the town's capture last July. Muslim escapees were
8 killed in the woods around Konjevic Polje as they tried to flee the
9 Srebrenica massacre and find safely in Muslim-held territory around Tuzla
10 to the west."
11 Do you stand by that article?
12 A. First of all, this is not an article that I wrote. Secondly, if
13 you knew how journalism operates, you would realise this is a text that
14 was published in the printed press, not on TV. It was not broadcast on
15 TV, so I'm not the author of this text.
16 Q. So it says by Brata Grulovic. Do you know any other Brata
18 A. Well, that's a byline, and you could put anyone's name here. I
19 claim here and I'm ready to face any consequence of this claim that this
20 is not my text, and I openly express my suspicion that this is a forgery.
21 All the texts exist in the Reuters files. You can talk to them, and
22 perhaps then you would get the original text. I also would like to
23 express my suspicion that on the 11th of January, 1996, I was not in
24 Konjevic Polje.
25 Q. Is it possible this information went out over the Reuters wire
1 service and your name is on it just because you were the chief?
2 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I did not report for editorials, or rather, the
3 text. I did my reports for TV. This is not a TV text. The TV reports
4 in the written form must contain the date, source, shortlist, all the
5 other elements that pertain to TV.
6 Q. Okay. So the substance of this, do you disagree with it?
7 A. Well, I don't want to discuss an article that I doubt I wrote at
8 all. Konjevic Polje in 1996, an editorial text, I don't recall ever
9 having done this.
10 Q. Whether --
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you -- one moment. Do you still wish to
12 intervene, Mr. Ostojic?
13 MR. OSTOJIC: If the questions are going to persist, the
14 objection would be it calls for a legal conclusion, obviously.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's see. What's your next question?
16 MR. MCCLOSKEY: My question was whether he agreed --
17 JUDGE AGIUS: No, no. He's answered that question. Your next
18 question? I think he has answered the question. Yeah.
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: Mr. President, he said he would not answer the
21 JUDGE AGIUS: He said he doesn't want to discuss an article about
22 which he has got --
23 MR. McCLOSKEY:
24 Q. Okay. Well, let's disregard that this says --
25 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, one moment, one moment.
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, let's proceed. Mr. McCloskey.
3 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you.
4 Q. Okay. Let's disregard this printout says it's from Reuters and
5 that it's got your name on it. Just by itself, this comment that the
6 Muslim population was driven out by the Bosnian-Serb army, do you agree
7 with that conclusion?
8 A. Your Honours, I really can't agree with something that I didn't
9 write. If I have to comment what some unidentified author has written,
10 then I don't think that this is a proper question. Please give me the
11 name of the author of a text that has been published, and then I can read
12 it and I can analyse it. But if it is now being imputed to me that I
13 wrote this and I didn't, now I have to comment on it.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop, stop, stop. Now, we were patient before
15 because we respected the position that you took that this article was
16 being wrongly attributed to you when you deny paternity completely, but
17 now the question is different. No one is suggesting to you that
18 irrespective of what you said it's still being attributed to you.
19 Granted for argument sake that this is, as you say, not an article
20 written by you; that's notwithstanding, having had a look at it, you are
21 being asked to state whether you agree with its contents or not, and your
22 answer should be based on your personal knowledge of the events and
23 independently of the authorship of this article.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was not in Srebrenica during the
25 events in Srebrenica and around it. I can only agree with the fact that
1 every town that has been destroyed, every village that has been burnt,
2 that has been abandoned, where nobody lives regardless of their ethnic
3 background or religion looks like a ghost town.
4 I also don't know how many people lived in Konjevic Polje before
5 the war, what the ethnic composition of the population was, so I cannot
6 know and I cannot claim that 4.000 people had been expelled from that
7 area. But whoever was expelled, regardless of what location, regardless
8 of who did it, it is a horrible act.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY:
10 Q. Okay. Thank you. I want to ask you about another article. This
11 is 65 ter number 3539, and hopefully you'll get it in your language.
12 This is dated 18 November 1996
13 printout as opposed to an article. It's similar computer printout
14 entitled "Reuters," and it says "by Branimir Grulovic." It's dated 18
15 November 1996, and it's on the topic of the ousted Bosnian-Serb generals,
16 I'm sure a topic that you are familiar with related to Ms. Plavsic and
17 others during that time frame.
18 If you could take a little while to look at this printout. Is
19 this something that you -- this printout from the Reuters -- well, headed
20 by Reuters, is this something that you recall being involved in, getting
21 out -- this information out to the public?
22 A. I remember this. I was present there when this meeting took
23 place in Banja Luka.
24 Q. So did you write this article, or did it go out under your
1 A. Again, I have to note, this is not byline. This is information.
2 This is -- these are captions that follow the images because you have to
3 provide some text, too, and this was probably taken out of that, but this
4 was never published as a printed text in the printed media.
5 Q. Right. This is a wire service, so this information goes out to
6 newspapers and publications all over the world, and they pick it up and
7 then cite Reuters or the AP or something like that, right?
8 A. That's correct.
9 Q. Okay. So unlike the last one we looked at, you can stand by this
10 one to say this was information that you and Reuters sent out on the wire
12 A. I think so, yes.
13 Q. You're not sure?
14 A. I did send information about these events, but I don't know
15 whether it was in this form or not, but that's not at issue here, so I
16 don't have any objections to this one, unlike for the previous one.
17 Q. Fair enough. In the second line you say, "top generals except
18 for Mladic and his closest aid General Milan Gvero."
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Krgovic.
20 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I object to this line
21 of questions, first of all because it is outside of the temporal and
22 territorial frame of the indictment. It's 1996. I don't know what's the
23 is point of this whole line of cross-examination. What is my learned
24 colleague trying to prove here?
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey, do you wish to answer?
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. I think the Reuters articles themselves or
2 the -- whatever we want to call them are particularly relevant. We found
3 one that he is disavowed on the particular events. Now we have found one
4 is he is avowing. We, also, if you recall, had a discussion by this
5 witness of the JNA officers and the effect of the politicians and the
6 nationalist on them. A very broad topic here is a JNA officer, General
7 Gvero, talking about politicians. It's right on point in responding to
8 Mr. Ostojic's cross-examination, and this is -- sorry, direct
9 examination, and this is cross-examination. This is an area I think the
10 Court would want to hear.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Thank you. Go ahead. Let's hear the
12 whole question. Until now, it appears to us to be quite relevant. If at
13 the end it proves to be the contrary, we'll stop Mr. McCloskey. But
14 otherwise, please proceed, Mr. McCloskey.
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes.
16 Q. When you talked about nationalist politicians, were -- do you put
17 Ms. Plavsic in that group?
18 A. Yes. Not only Reuters but the other media characterized
19 Ms. Plavsic as a hard-liner.
20 Q. All right. And you note here that Milan Gvero is General
21 Mladic's closest aid. How did you conclude -- come to that conclusion?
22 A. General Milan Gvero, as the other generals who were in the Main
23 Staff, are all closest associates of the chief of the Main Staff. They
24 all had their different purviews, so General Milan Gvero as a member of
25 the Main Staff was definitely an associate of the chief of the Main
1 Staff. That's in accordance with the military rules of service, so I
2 still maintain that.
3 Q. What this says is he is the closest aid. You can only be one
4 closest in both language. You can't all be the closest. So are you
5 backing off this article in that respect, or are you saying Gvero was
6 Mladic's number-one man?
7 A. It's very difficult to take any stance from the written word, but
8 what I'm saying is that General Gvero, like all the other generals,
9 members of the Main Staff, were all very close associates, and each of
10 them had respective purviews. And if we are talking about General Milan
11 Gvero, whether he was the closest assistant to General Mladic, based on
12 this text as I sit here today I have to distance myself from this
14 Q. So you are distancing yourself now as you sit here today. Why is
16 A. Because of your remark. You were insisting on him being the
17 closest assistant. I really can't know that, but at the moment when I
18 was drafting this text, I suppose that this is how things were presented
19 to us, and that's where I drew my conclusion from.
20 Q. Do you think something has changed since the time that you wrote
21 the article? Have you learned something else, or is it because you are
22 testifying and it's hard to testify against your fellows?
23 MR. OSTOJIC: Let me just object to the form of the question. I
24 don't know, and I think it's inappropriate for Mr. McCloskey to call him
25 his fellows. He didn't lay a foundation. These are certainly not his
1 fellows. Mr. Grulovic was not in the military at any time, but I object
2 to just that last characterization.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey. Let's proceed. I think the
4 question is clear enough.
5 MR. McCLOSKEY: I thought he said he was in the JNA.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah, yeah, exactly, and what's being suggested to
7 the witness is whether he is biased or not, I mean, and I think he can
8 perfectly answer that.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY:
10 Q. Sir, I think it's a fair question. You've just got to examine
11 your own thoughts and feelings on that.
12 A. I'm not biased. I don't have any mental or emotional problems.
13 I can testify against anybody that I deem to deserve something either
14 positive or negative, and I'm saying it again to you, Mr. Prosecutor.
15 Everybody who is sitting close to somebody who is a chief of a military
16 body is their close -- or closest associates as long as they are both
17 sitting in the same body. We could not attend any meetings, which is
18 only natural, and thus we could not draw our own personal conclusion as
19 to who the closest associate of General Mladic's were, whether they were
20 merely close or the closest. However, based on the way things were
21 presented to us, by the sources that we respected, one could arrive at
22 this kind of conclusion. Nothing has changed in the meantime. However,
23 if I were put in the same situation today, I suppose that my sentence
24 would have been drafted in a different way, in a more precise way. It
25 would read better. So we would not have to discuss that sentence as we
1 are doing now.
2 Q. Did you have a chance to interview General Gvero at any time
3 during or after the war?
4 A. Yes, but I have to emphasize that those were not interviews.
5 Those were statements for the media, press statements, and then based on
6 those statements, you know how the mechanism works. You were allowed to
7 maybe put in a question edgewise, but I wouldn't say that this was the
8 true form of an interview as part of the journalist profession.
9 Q. When was it that you were able to ask General Gvero questions?
10 A. I really can't remember. I know that we had several official
11 encounters during which we could talk to him. He provided his statement
12 to us in the command of the 2nd Krajina Corps. We also met him and he
13 provided the statement, not only to me. It was not an exclusive
14 statement, but it was provided at a press conference not far from
15 Gorazde, and if I remember it well, it was in the spring of 1994. And I
16 may have met him on several other occasions, which I can't really
17 remember too well, and I don't even remember the -- why I met him.
18 Q. Well, you must have been taking notes during the time that you
19 had a chance to question him. A journalist always has a notebook.
20 A. My notebook weighed 12 kilos, unfortunately, and its name was a
22 Q. So you never took any written notes in your chance to ask General
23 Gvero questions?
24 A. If I have a 12-kilos-weighing camera on my shoulder, it is
25 absolutely impossible to me to make any notes. So what I'm saying is you
1 can't run your camera and make notes, so the answer is no.
2 Q. Sir, we see that information went out over the wires as you've
3 acknowledged, short bits of information. Are you suggesting that that
4 information had to be pulled from the hours of videotape that associated
5 your various contacts with people?
6 A. Yes, but it was not ours. Professionals working in agencies know
7 that there are limitations on time and space, so they have to be as
8 efficient as possible. These materials were rarely longer than 10 or 15
9 minutes, and you will allow me to say that it wasn't really difficult to
10 listen to maybe 10 or 15 minutes of material because a camera will record
11 both the image and the sound at the same time.
12 Q. I've never -- perhaps you can explain to me. 10 or 15 minutes,
13 I've never seen any clips from Bosnia
14 They're always -- the ones -- every one I've seen, from the BBC, from
15 Sirina [phoen], from various people, are in the hours of length, but I
16 won't argue with you on that. Certainly, you would have some videotape
17 of your contacts while you were in the area of the 2nd Krajina Corps
18 prior -- about the time that Srebrenica fell?
19 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I worked in an agency. I was not a broadcaster.
20 Agency news is short, a minute and a half to three minutes max, and
21 that's the main and the most important difference between agency news and
22 broadcasting news. Broadcasters use agency news; that's the reason
23 behind the existence of agencies. All the footages that were taken
24 anywhere or at any time in -- during the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina are
25 the property of Reuters television, and they exist among their documents.
1 I'm sure that you can approach them with your request to get access to
2 them, and then you can listen to the clips and watch them yourselves if
3 they will allow you to do so.
4 Q. Were you shooting film in this area where you were, the forward
5 command post on July 11th, where you say you were when Srebrenica fell?
6 A. No. I was not shooting any films. What I did was making short
7 news stories.
8 Q. Was your camera turned on? What were you making news stories of
9 if your camera wasn't on, and how were you doing it? I thought you said
10 your notebook was your camera.
11 A. I am afraid I would have to run a course for you on the
12 functioning of the agencies and on the way camera crews collect
13 information, but that's not why I was invited to come here. But, sir,
14 you have to understand that television news stories last from a minute
15 and a half to three minutes tops. They can be edited; they can be
16 non-edited. And if they are raw, if they are not edited, then they are
17 call camera piece. Whenever we go and film out in the field, we try and
18 shoot as little material as possible, and I'm talking both about the
19 video and audio recording, in order to waste as little time when
20 reviewing all that material and editing it because we all in a race for
21 time, always trying to beat our competitors. And that's why I'm asking
22 you very kindly that if you are interested in the materials that either I
23 or my colleagues recorded, approach the Reuters television, ask to review
24 their documents, and then you will be able to review all that for
1 Q. Sir, it was a simple question. Were you shooting any film the
2 day Srebrenica fell, the day you have very specific recollection of
3 meeting Colonel Beara?
4 A. I really can't remember whether on the 11th of July, 1995
5 my camera turned on and whether I recorded anything. I think so, but
6 please allow me to have my reservations, but on the day when we heard
7 that Srebrenica had fallen, my main preoccupation was to leave the area,
8 go somewhere else in order to redirect my main focus on a different
9 location, the location which at that time was interesting from the media
10 point of view, that had a story at that moment.
11 Q. How long had you been at this IKM before you left to go back to
13 A. If my memory serves me well, this was from the morning hours
14 until late afternoon. The sun was already falling, if I'm not mistaken,
15 when I left that particular place but not the area of responsibility of
16 the 2nd Krajina Corps.
17 Q. How long were you in the area of responsibility of the 2nd
18 Krajina Corps prior to leaving on the 11th to go to Belgrade?
19 A. I didn't say that I left for Belgrade on the 11th, did I? On the
20 following day or maybe I stayed even two days. I can't really tell you.
21 I was waiting for my transportation for Belgrade to be organised, and
22 that took time.
23 Q. Okay. Well, let's try to clear that up. How many days after you
24 heard on the radio that Srebrenica fell did you go to Belgrade?
25 A. A day or two, maybe.
1 Q. So you don't remember?
2 A. I can't tell you for a fact. I can only tell you that it took a
3 whole day or -- actually, it took up to 12 hours to get from that place
4 to Belgrade
5 only thing I can tell you.
6 Q. So you can't be sure you saw Colonel Beara, either. It might
7 have been another VRS officer?
8 MR. OSTOJIC: Let me object to the form of the question, and
9 there's no foundation for that. I don't know how he is making that
10 connection. I think it's inappropriate.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: This is cross-examination on an alibi witness,
12 for God's sake.
13 MR. OSTOJIC: Let me just state for the record, and I don't mind
14 the comments, but first of all --
15 JUDGE AGIUS: No, no, no. Slow, slow, slow, slow. Let's keep it
17 MR. OSTOJIC: I haven't said anything. I think the comments are
18 coming from the other side. First of all, if we look at the evidence the
19 Prosecution led, it's quite clear --
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Can we do this outside the presence of the
21 witness, please.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: This is why I said slow because [indiscernible]
23 have understood me. I think you've put your argument clear enough. He
24 has, as well. I don't think we need to hear anything else. We'll just
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 JUDGE AGIUS: It's a perfectly correct question. Go ahead, Mr.
3 Grulovic. Please answer it.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I understood the question
5 correctly -- or could you please repeat the question.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: It's being put to you that perhaps you could be
7 wrong when you say that you spoke to Beara; you could have seen some
8 other VRS officer.
9 If I didn't put the question correctly to the witness,
10 Mr. McCloskey, please correct me.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: That will work, Mr. President.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I claim that I saw Colonel
13 Beara. There is an anecdote that is tied to that encounter with him, and
14 if you want me to do that, I can share that particular thing with you,
15 that event.
16 MR. McCLOSKEY:
17 Q. Have you shared it with Mr. Ostojic?
18 A. What?
19 Q. The anecdote.
20 A. Actually, it's not an anecdote. It's a very dangerous thing,
21 something that almost cost me my life, so I really wouldn't call it an
23 Q. Maybe it's a translation issue. Your answer was that there's an
24 anecdote that would help explain the story, and I asked you if you had
25 told that anecdote to Mr. Ostojic.
1 A. Bad translation. I never said anecdote, and no, I did not share
2 that with Mr. Ostojic. He didn't ask me. He was not in a position to
3 ask me because he didn't know anything about that. I never told him, but
4 I can share it with you now if you want me to.
5 Q. Okay. Let's hear it.
6 A. I'll try and be very concise. On that day, there was a meeting,
7 which was attended by Colonel Beara, General Gvero, and if my memory
8 serves me well, General Milovanovic, as well, and some other people whose
9 names I don't know. I and another colleague of mine were in front of the
10 building where the meeting was taking place, and close to the end of the
11 meeting two men in uniform approached me and my colleague, and they
12 threatened us. They told us they would be killed because we were there
13 without any permission, that we were not authorised to be there and that
14 we were conveying stories to the world that were not to their liking.
15 I called General Gvero in a panic. General Gvero was just
16 walking to his car at that moment. Colonel Beara turned up at that
17 moment, approached these two men in a very -- in a very authoritative
18 way. He prevented these two from inflicting physical harm on myself and
19 my colleague. Thus, I did not want to go into any detail of the danger
20 of that situation, but that's how I remember so well that I saw both
21 General Gvero and Colonel Beara on that occasion.
22 Q. And what kind of car did Gvero have?
23 A. A passenger car, but I can't remember which make.
24 Q. So when did you first start recalling these events, the events
25 you've just talked about, the passenger car, Gvero, Beara, this dangerous
1 situation you were in over 13 years ago? When did you first start
2 recollecting these events, or perhaps you had written about them as a
3 journalist might.
4 A. Let me start with last things first. I never wrote about this
5 incident, and if your life is ever threatened, this is not something that
6 takes time to recall. This is something that is deeply imbranded [sic]
7 in your memory all your life.
8 Q. So just right now, 13 years after the fact, you remember Gvero
9 was with you there?
10 A. Yes, and I repeat for the last or umpteenth time, yes, yes, yes,
12 Q. Okay. Let's go to another topic. You've talked about Colonel
13 Beara and that you had a favourable viewpoint of him. He was nice to his
14 mother. Would you be disappointed to learn that he used derogatory terms
15 towards Muslim in official military documents?
16 A. First of all, I don't know anything about that.
17 Q. It's a simple question. If you learned that he had repeatedly
18 referred to Muslims as "balija" in official military documents, would you
19 be disappointed that he would stoop to that level?
20 A. First of all, the word "balija" was in general use. It was used
21 very often. I don't even know what the meaning of that is, and I suppose
22 that a Bosniak, would find this derogatory. But the same goes for the
23 word "Chetnik" when that word is used for Serbs in a negative sense, and
24 the word is still being used. So when it comes to those local terms, I
25 don't know. For example, this is like if I told you that we call our
1 people who hail from Krusevac, which a town in Serbia, "carapani," this
2 is something that is lost in translation, and you wouldn't be able to
3 understand it. So if you were to explain to me the term "balija," what
4 it means, maybe I would be able to answer your question whether I would
5 be disappointed our not. Since I don't know, it's very hard for me to
6 answer and to tell you whether I'd be disappointed.
7 Q. Sir, you don't know what "balija" means?
8 A. I don't.
9 Q. You don't know how the word "balija" is commonly used in the
10 Serbo-Croat language?
11 A. I know that it is used, but I don't know its meanings. I know it
12 is applied to members of the Bosniak nation, but I don't know its
14 Q. Is it a -- what kind of term is it? Is it a nice term? Is it a
15 derogatory term? Is it a neutral term?
16 A. I would have to go into the etymology of the word, and I'm not a
17 linguistic expert. I suppose that its origin is in the Turkish language.
18 I repeat, I don't know. I don't know whether it's good or bad, but where
19 I come from, different terms are used. If you were to translate our
20 family names, you would understand how rude they may be. I can even give
21 you examples for that, so I really wouldn't be able to give you the
22 meaning of the word "balija." Having said that, I know that it is used.
23 Q. Okay. Well, let's go to a document, 65 ter 3510. It will come
24 up on your board. This is a document dated 10 of April, 1995, from the
25 VRS Main Staff, and I would note to the Court, there was a similar
1 document in court dated 29 April, 65
2 Vujadin Popovic. This one comes under the name of Colonel Ljubisa Beara
3 and is dated a few days earlier on the 10th of April, and it's to the
4 security department of the 1st Krajina Corps, the 2nd Krajina Corps, the
5 eastern -- all the corps, basically, and to the security organs of
6 several other units. And it starts out -- and we can look at the back of
7 it. Look at the bottom. You can see this is from Chief Colonel Ljubisa
8 Beara. And sir, "colonel" is not here because he used the term "balija,"
9 just to make that clear, but I just want to ask you about this.
10 The Drina
11 balija, Omerovic Saban, from Zutica village, Srebrenica enclave, and it
12 goes on. I won't read it all out, but there are five references to this
13 term "balija." Now, I received a note from Mr. Ostojic that you would be
14 talking about the non-discriminatory mental disposition towards ethnic
15 group, especially Muslims. If this document is genuine and Colonel Beara
16 is five times referring to Muslims and a particular Muslim as balija, can
17 you really testify that he doesn't have any discrimination in him?
18 A. If this is a facsimile of the original document, the one that I
19 have here in front of me, I can't see the signature of Colonel Beara; and
20 let me note once again, I don't know what the word "balija" means. Could
21 you please explain it to me, and then I'll be able to answer it once that
22 I've learned what it means.
23 Q. I'll give you an example how I've heard it the most when I listen
24 to Muslims testify or I hear their statements. It's usually coming from
25 soldiers while Muslims are in the area, and it's usually -- they usually
1 say something like "fuck your balija mother." Certainly you've heard
2 that particular phrase?
3 A. Well, what you said in our language, in our parlance, it's like,
4 good day to you. That's how we greet each other. We say hey, hello,
5 where are you, and then [no interpretation] your mother. So I really
6 can't understand your question, but I say it again, if this is a
7 facsimile of the original document, then Beara has not signed it.
8 There's no Beara signature here, so please don't keep putting those
9 documents in front of my nose, and I would like to ask the Trial Chamber
10 if we could perhaps have a break.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. We'll have a 25-minute break now. Thank you.
12 --- Break taken at 12.17 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 12:46 p.m.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Mr. Grulovic, are you all right now? Can we
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Mr. McCloskey.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
19 Q. Mr. Grulovic, I think we'll leave that term alone and go on to
20 something else, and if we could have 65 ter number 480 brought on the
21 screen. But let me ask you about another ethnic term. What does the
22 term "Siptar" refer to? It's not on the screen.
23 A. Well, I don't know what "Siptar" has to do with Bosnia
24 me tell you, "Siptar" in the Serbian language comes from the Albanian
25 term, "soperia" [phoen] or "sopar." [phoen] I don't know if I pronounce
1 it correctly, but it means "Albanian."
2 Q. Is it a derogatory term for Albanians?
3 A. Recently it has come to be derogatory, but earlier it was not
4 derogatory at all. I can say that with full authority because I spent a
5 lot of time in Kosovo, both in business and privately.
6 Q. Do you know a journalist from Belgrade named Stradoja Simic, a
7 publication called Svedok, I think.
8 A. No. And I don't read this paper. If my mind, it's a tabloid
9 paper, and I don't -- I've never even taken it into my hands at all.
10 Q. All right. I -- if we could go to page 2 in the B/C/S. We have
11 heard from Mr. Simic who said that Colonel Beara had granted an interview
12 and they did an interview together and that that was published in this
13 paper, and Mr. Simic said that what was published here is accurate and --
14 sorry, I don't have a good B/C/S copy. It's tiny. See if I can get you
15 a bigger one. They have blown it up a bit for you so you can see that.
16 If we can just go -- I don't really need you to go through the whole
17 article, but if you could just help him go through the first part of it.
18 I really want to ask him about a question that is on page 3 of the B/C/S,
19 page 8 of the English. I'm sorry, page 3 in the B/C/S, page 7 in the
20 English. But if you could go down with him so he can get a bit of the
21 flavour of this question-and-answer session. Let us know when you are
22 finished reading, so ...
23 A. Yes, I've read the first page where there is this big picture. I
24 am sorry, it's not -- I don't have the whole one, yes.
25 Q. Okay. If we could go to the next page or the next part so he can
1 read the whole thing, please.
2 A. [In English] Okay. Next page, please.
3 Q. Actually, let me start with page 2 in the B/C/S. That's where
4 this term "Siptar" is used in an answer. It's page 5 in the English, and
5 so the questioner says, "So you don't feel guilty?" If you can make that
6 tiny print. Sorry I didn't get you a bigger print. But it begins with
7 the question "So you don't feel guilty," and according to this article,
8 Ljubisa Beara says, "I haven't seen the indictment yet."
9 THE INTERPRETER: Please be moved up a little bit for
10 interpreters, please.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY:
12 Q. "I am guilty, I suppose, just because I am a Serb. According to
13 The Hague
14 crimes. The Croats, Muslims, and hordes of mercenaries from all over the
15 world are not. Only we are the aggressors and to be blamed for the civil
16 war. Why don't they tell the truth? That Croatia organised an illegal
17 army in the SFRY, that the Slovenes organised an armed uprising, that the
18 patriotic league in the BH secretly organised the Green Berets, that the
19 Siptars in Kosmet set up the OBK before the eyes of the entire world. No
20 one wants to say that Yugoslavia
21 and Solana, the peacemaker. We are just small fry, and they can do
22 whatever they like. Who armed the Croats? Germans and the Vatican
23 Even the birds on the trees know that. Everyone knows it, but they are
24 all playing the fools. They have only one objective, to put the Serbs in
25 the ghetto."
1 This answer suggesting all these other ethnic groups are -- but
2 mainly I want to ask you about this idea that the Serbs are being set up,
3 that the Serbs are being put in the ghetto, that they are the victims of
4 everything. Do you -- what is your view of that kind of propaganda, if I
5 may say? Unless you don't think it's propaganda.
6 A. My personal opinion of the propaganda in this article, well, I
7 don't see why it would be relevant because I've already said when I
8 didn't know that you would be asking me this that I consider Svedok to be
9 the kind of newspaper that builds its credibility and its niche on the
10 market through sensationalism, which is contrary to professionalism. Of
11 course, as a citizen I have my political views and opinions of what
12 happened, and I believe that it was propaganda on all sides that did a
13 good part of the work and that people started hating each other.
14 Unrelated to this text, if you allow me I can give you an example
15 of what I'm talking about.
16 Q. I think we would probably agree with you that propaganda played a
17 big role in this, but I don't think we need to get into that, sir. In
18 fact, I thank you for your time, and I have no further questions.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Is there re-examination? One moment.
20 Yes, Mr. Ostojic.
21 MR. OSTOJIC: No, Mr. President.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you, Mr. Krgovic.
23 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'm seeking the
24 permission of the Court to re-examine this witness because the
25 Prosecution devoted a good part of the cross-examination to my client,
1 Mr. Gvero. I did not mention him at all. I could not assume that the
2 Prosecution would be asking questions about my clients, and this has to
3 do with the questions asked in the cross-examination by the Prosecution.
4 I would like to ask him about the meetings with General Gvero and about
5 how the witness saw the role and what they talked about at those
6 meetings. General Gvero and the witness, that's what I mean.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey.
8 MR. McCLOSKEY: I would object to questions relating to General
9 Gvero's role. The article regarding General Gvero's role was on our
10 list, and they could have questioned him on that. They did, in fact,
11 question him on other things. However, the part where Gvero appeared
12 with Beara is something new to everyone, and I do not object if he wishes
13 to go into that because that is new. The other stuff is not new. Those
14 documents, those issues were all there for one that wishes to take the
15 risk of bringing them up. They chose not to take that risk.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: You also know what our position is when it comes to
17 cross-examinations and not redirect, so one moment.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Again, not to be interpreted as setting
20 a precedent for later, we are allowing you to ask the witness questions
21 only in relation to the last issue mentioned by Mr. McCloskey to wit the
22 meeting with Gvero and Beara and nothing else beyond that.
23 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
24 Re-examination by Mr. Krgovic:
25 Q. Mr. Grulovic, you mentioned in your response to the Prosecution
1 that in July 1995, I think it was in the area of responsibility of the
2 2nd Krajina corps that you met a number of people, including General
3 Gvero. Do you remember that answer?
4 A. Yes.
5 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could all the microphones
6 in the courtroom please be switched off if they are not in use.
7 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. At the time when you spoke with General Gvero, what was the
9 primary concern of General Gvero? What part of the theatre, what did you
10 talk about at that time?
11 A. Well, I apologise if my previous answer was not clear enough. I
12 said that I was in front of the building where the meeting was taking
13 place and that I merely said "hello" to General Gvero who was heading to
14 his car when two persons tried to endanger my safety. I think I
15 mentioned that Colonel Beara appeared at that time, and he responded, and
16 the general also turned around and -- in response to my mild scream
17 asking for help. So at that time we did not talk about anything, about
18 any events in Bosnia-Herzegovina, in Republika Srpska, in the area of
19 responsibility of the 2nd Krajina Corps. When this whole circus, if I
20 may call it that, ended, General Gvero hurried away. Of course, it never
21 occurred to me to ask him where he was going.
22 Q. Thank you very much, Mr. Grulovic.
23 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] I have no further questions, Your
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Grulovic, your testimony ends here. We don't
1 have any further questions for you, which means that you will be assisted
2 by our staff to return home. On behalf of the Tribunal, I wish to thank
3 you for having come over to give evidence, and on behalf of everyone
4 present here, I wish you a safe journey back home.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would like to thank you, Your
7 [The witness withdrew]
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Ostojic, documents.
9 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Mr. President. The only one we used was
10 2D547, and we would just -- I don't know that it's necessary, but if the
11 Court wishes it, we would offer it, but we are not insisting on that
12 document. 2D547.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: It's up to you, I mean, I don't think --
14 MR. OSTOJIC: Then we'll tender it, Your Honour. I'm sorry.
15 We'll tender it.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: -- we should say whether we need it or not. We'll
17 never know. Yes, any objections?
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: No, Mr. President.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: I would take it that it means only that page. You
20 are tendering only that particular page or the entire document?
21 MR. OSTOJIC: The first page and the -- I think it was page 14 I
22 think would be adequate enough.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Any objections from the other Defence
24 teams? None. They are so admitted.
25 Mr. Krgovic, you don't have any documents, I suppose?
1 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey?
3 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President. 65 ter 3510, 3538, 3539, and
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Any objections?
6 MR. HAYNES: I don't think 3540 was used.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Can you check.
8 JUDGE KWON: Is it not the intercept?
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, that's Sonja's intercept.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Krgovic?
11 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] We don't have any objections to
12 the admission of these documents.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Have you verified, Mr. Haynes?
14 MR. HAYNES: I'll accept it. It just doesn't appear on WordWheel
15 until it was mentioned just now, but it --
16 MR. JOSSE: He gave the wrong number. He gave the wrong number
18 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. No objections?
19 MR. OSTOJIC: No objection, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: So that document is also admitted. Shall we move
21 to the next witness.
22 [The witness entered court]
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning, to you, Mr. Jevdevic.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm the presiding judge, and I wish to welcome you
1 to this Tribunal. You have been summoned as a witness by the Defence
2 team for the Ljubisa Beara, but before you start giving evidence you are
3 required to undertake that you will be testifying the truth. The solemn
4 declaration is going to be handed to you now. Please read it out aloud,
5 and that will be your solemn undertaking with us.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
7 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Right. I thank you. Please make yourself
9 comfortable. Who will be -- Mr. Nikolic from the Beara Defence team will
10 be putting some questions to you. It will then be followed by others.
11 We won't finish today with you, but hopefully we will be finished
12 tomorrow. Go ahead.
13 MR. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
14 WITNESS: MARINKO JEVDEVIC
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 Examination by Mr. Nikolic:
17 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Jevdevic. As you know, my name is Predrag
18 Nikolic, and I am part of Ljubisa Beara's Defence team. Before I start
19 asking you questions, I would like to give you some useful advice that we
20 both must comply with in order to enable everyone to follow our
21 conversation. Since we both speak Serbian, we always have to make a
22 small pause between question and answer in order to give interpreters the
23 time to interpret everything that we've said. Can we begin now?
24 A. Yes.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous translation continued]... also, he is not
1 only the witness of the Beara Defence team but also of the Miletic
2 defence team, for the record. Yes, Mr. Nikolic.
3 MR. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
4 Q. Could you please introduce yourself, give us your name, father's
5 name, the place and date of birth.
6 A. My name is Marinko Jevdevic. My father's name is Nedjel. I was
7 born in Rogatica in 1968. That's where I graduated from high school.
8 Q. What is your educational background, then?
9 A. I graduated from the technical transport school.
10 Q. What about your professional background after graduation?
11 A. After graduation, I applied with the Yugoslav army to become a
12 professional serviceman.
13 Q. When was that? When were you a professional member of the JNA?
14 A. I applied in 1991, actually, towards the end of 1991, and I
15 started working on the 15th of March, 1992, as a member of the Uzice
17 Q. You are saying that you were a professional soldier. What was
18 your professional duty?
19 A. During my compulsory military service, I became a soldier
20 specializing in anti-terrorism, and I applied to become a professional
21 serviceman in Belgrade
22 given a position in the Uzice corps.
23 Q. How long did you stay with the JNA, to be more precise, the Uzice
25 A. I stayed with the Uzice corps until 29 May 1992.
1 Q. And after that?
2 A. After that date, I transferred to the Army of Republika Srpska.
3 I was supposed to report to the command at Han Pijesak where the J -- the
4 Republika Srpska army had its barracks.
5 Q. What unit were you assigned to?
6 A. I was assigned to the protection regiment, and I went to
7 Similjajka [phoen]. That's where the protection regiment was, and I was
8 assigned to the police company unit for anti-terrorist activity, and I
9 was a detachment commander or a platoon commander, rather.
10 Q. Who was your immediate superior at the time?
11 A. My immediate superior was Zoran Malinic, who was the battalion
12 commander, because my company was under strength of the military police
14 Q. And who was the commander of the protection regiment?
15 A. It was General Milomir Savcic, who was on sick leave at the time
16 after having been wounded.
17 Q. Where was the headquarters or the base of the military police
18 unit that you belonged to, in which part of the territory?
19 A. It was in Similjajka. We had our tents or camp there in the
20 vicinity of the Main Staff.
21 Q. And did you stay there all the time, or did you change positions?
22 Did you change your base?
23 A. The military police battalion changed its base in the month of
24 August 1993. We were relocated to Nova Kasaba. The whole battalion was
1 Q. Can you just briefly explain what the main tasks and duties of
2 the military police were? I.e., what were your duties as a military
3 policeman and the tasks that you had?
4 A. The duties had to do with the implementation of peace and order
5 in the military. We provided security for facilities and people. We
6 provided security for the command post. Those were by and large our
7 tasks, and we were also involved in the prevention of the infiltration of
8 some groups that tried to infiltrate our territory, scar the terrain, and
9 we also participated in some of the actions that were taking place in our
10 parts of the battle field.
11 Q. Did you also provide security for the Main Staff and its base,
12 its headquarters?
13 A. Yes. Some battalion companies did provide security for the Main
15 Q. Mr. Jevdevic, I'm going to show you a document now. 2D233 is its
16 number. We also have a draft version of the English translation, which
17 I'll kindly ask the usher to distribute among the Bench and our learned
18 friends from the Prosecution. I apologise, the number is wrong. 2D529.
20 Could you please spend a moment reading this document, and when
21 you are ready to answer my questions, give me a sign. Could the document
22 please be blown up on the screen. The letters are too small. Now this
23 is much better. Thank you.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. So we can proceed. Can you tell me who issued this document?
1 What is it about?
2 A. It was issued by the Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska,
3 the administration for intelligence and security.
4 Q. And the date?
5 A. The date is 19 February 1993
6 Q. What is the Main Staff talking about? Who are they informing,
7 and what tasks are given by the Main Staff and to whom?
8 A. What is contained in this document is information to all the
9 corps about issues with paramilitary units that should be put under our
10 control. This is exactly what we did in the course of 1993. This was
11 part of our policing duty, preventing paramilitary informations, their
12 arrest, and placing them under the control of the Army Republika Srpska.
13 Q. Very well, then. Please did you and who from receive tasks in
14 relation to this document which speaks about the prevention of the
15 paramilitary activities?
16 A. I participated in a task which concerned the prevention of the
17 activities of the paramilitary formations in the zone of responsibility
18 of the Drina Corps; to be more precise, in Bratunac. We were given a
19 task. I personally was given this task from Major Malinic. I was
20 supposed to take some of my troops in an APC and go towards Bratunac
21 where there was a group which was creating problems in the brigade. On
22 its strength, there were some soldiers who were not actually soldiers but
23 members of a paramilitary organisation. They belonged to some other
25 Q. When you say paramilitary, what do you mean?
1 A. Paramilitaries are a unit that is under nobody's command or is
2 not on the strength of the Republika Srpska army. Independent, acting
4 Q. You said that this was in Bratunac. Can you please tell me when
5 it was? What year were you given that task, and what paramilitary units
6 were in question?
7 A. This was in spring 1992, and I can't give you the exact date when
8 we were given our brief. When we arrived in Bratunac, we were given the
9 brief from Major Malinic. He already had intelligence about the
10 existence of some units or parts thereof or even some individuals who
11 were there who were supposed to be brought in. We were even issued with
12 the search warrants for their houses and the confiscation of their
13 personal effects.
14 Q. Slow down just a little. We'll come to that. I suppose that
15 when you were given this brief that these paramilitary units and
16 individuals had already been located, and you knew exactly where to go to
17 carry out your order. Am I right?
18 A. Yes, you are.
19 Q. Can you please tell me, if you remember, which groups were those,
20 and how did you know that those were paramilitary formations?
21 A. We were given the names of three individuals. One was Bosko
22 Crveni, Red Bosko. Red was his nickname. I don't know his family name.
23 The other person was Bato Kocar, and the third person was a certain
24 Kokara, whose first name I don't know, and Kokara is probably his
25 nickname. As for Bosko Crveni, we knew at the time that he was somewhere
1 in Erdut and that he would come to Bratunac only from time to time.
2 Q. Just for clarification, where is Erdut?
3 A. Erdut is somewhere in Slavonia
4 exactly where.
5 Q. Is it in Bosnia-Herzegovina or in another republic?
6 A. In another republic.
7 Q. These individuals that you've just mentioned, were they members
8 of the Republika Srpska army or were they acting independently together
9 with some other groups?
10 A. At the time they acted independently, and that's why we had been
11 sent into the area.
12 Q. Okay. I'm now going to ask you to describe how you accomplished
13 your mission. How did you proceed?
14 A. Sometime late in the afternoon or in the evening, we were told to
15 search the family houses of the aforementioned persons. We acted in
16 three different groups in cooperation with the military police of the
17 Bratunac Brigades. I personally went to search Kokara's family house.
18 We searched the premises, and we found a lot of ammunition, weaponry, and
19 military equipment that we confiscated pursuant to the order we had to
20 search the premises and confiscate the things that we found. We also had
21 an order to arrest him, but we did not find him at home.
22 Q. Very well, then. How were you assisted by the Bratunac military
23 police or the military police of the Bratunac Brigade?
24 A. They went with us. They compiled the record on the procedure as
25 well as the record of all the confiscated things, which means that
1 everything that was confiscated was recorded by them. We were there to
2 carry out the mission in the appropriate way, and they made the record of
3 everything that had been done.
4 Q. Did you search the houses of all the three individuals that you
5 mentioned that same evening?
6 A. Yes. But we were split into three groups that worked
7 simultaneously, and I went with one of them.
8 Q. Were there any incidents that evening?
9 A. There were no incidents whatsoever. Nothing happened that
11 Q. And later on, what happened? Were there any new problems? How
12 did the individuals whose weapons had been confiscated react?
13 A. The following day -- or rather, we were billeted in the ceramics
14 factory in Bratunac before we were sent out on the mission. On the
15 following day, the group appeared minus Bosko Crveni, who wasn't there.
16 They appeared with their fellow like-minded colleagues. They turned up
17 in our parking lot in front of the premises where we were billeted.
18 Q. Are you saying that two out of the three turned up with a bigger
19 group of the like-minded colleagues and turned up in front of the
20 temporary headquarters of the military police in Bratunac?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And what happened? What was the occasion? How come they turned
24 A. They turned up armed, and they circled the entire parking lot.
25 They even provided physical security for the APC that belonged to us.
1 They encircled that, as well, and they wanted to talk to somebody. They
2 wanted to know who had sent us, with what authority we had done what we
3 did. I knew Bato Kocar personally.
4 Q. What did they want from you?
5 A. They wanted to talk to one of our superiors or whoever had given
6 us the task.
7 Q. How did you resolve this situation?
8 A. I spoke mostly with Bato Kocar, who was a member of the Bratunac
9 Brigade, I believe. But at that particular time, he was not on the best
10 of terms with the rest of the brigade. Basically, I tried to calm things
11 down. I told him that I would inform somebody, then that very soon
12 somebody would come to talk to him. Since we knew each other from
13 before, we did not use force. We could deal with the matter in peaceful
14 terms, and that's when I informed Major Malinic who had left and gone to
15 Nova Kasaba where our command was. Major Malinic answered that he would
16 be with us really quickly.
17 Q. And did Major Malinic really arrive soon, and what was your
18 opinion of that in relation to the persons that came with the weapons and
19 for all intents and purposes rebelled against a unit such as your one?
20 A. Well, I wanted to prevent any conflict between myself and the
21 other persons. I made the APC move away from the site, and I talked to
22 them, and after awhile, after about half an hour, Colonel Beara wanted to
23 talk to me using communications equipment. He asked me where Malinic
25 Q. Thank you. Could you please explain, why did Colonel Beara want
1 to talk to you when you informed your superior?
2 A. Well, Colonel Beara probably went to see Malinic, and he was
3 probably heading down towards the Nova Kasaba-Konjevic Polje-Bratunac
4 road. He probably saw Malinic, and he probably knew that I had informed
5 Malinic about this incident, about what was going on, that they were
6 looking for somebody to talk to about their problems.
7 Q. Let me ask you this: Did you consider it logical that somebody
8 from the security organ would want to talk to you? Was that your joint
9 task, yours and theirs?
10 A. Well, it was quite logical to me that this was our joint task
11 because we were also under the intelligence and security administration,
12 and it was quite logical for Colonel Beara to send Major Malinic to deal
13 with this, to carry out this task.
14 Q. And what agreement did you reach with Colonel Beara regarding how
15 to solve this whole incident?
16 A. Well, he spoke to me very briefly using the communications
17 equipment. He asked me, Kid, what is going on down there? And I said,
18 Well, there's a couple of people here, somebody should talk to them. And
19 he instructed me very briefly, telling me, Send them down there to a
20 cafe. I think its name was Cezar or some other name. I can't really
21 remember. I'll be down there myself, but don't tell them who is coming.
22 And our conversation ended with that.
23 So I went out and I told Bato Kocar and his pals that somebody
24 would come and talk to them, and that's what they did.
25 Q. Please, in your answer you said that Colonel Beara told you, Kid,
1 what is going on there. This form of address, does that mean that you
2 had known each other from before?
3 A. Well, we did meet on a couple of occasions because we both
4 belonged to the Main Staff and we were moving around that area, so we
5 knew each other, or rather, I knew Colonel Beara from before.
6 Q. Very well. Who did go to this cafe to talk to the two people or
7 no matter how many there were? Did the escorts go there too?
8 A. Well, yes. About seven or eight of them went down to that cafe,
9 and they were waiting for somebody. I told them to just sit there and
10 wait for awhile because somebody would be there shortly to talk to them.
11 Q. Fine. And please tell me, once they were gathered in this place,
12 did you accompany Colonel Beara, and can you describe the course of the
14 A. Yes. Colonel Beara arrived shortly. I got into a vehicle
15 together with him, and we drove down to this place where they were. We
16 entered the cafe. They were all in there sitting around the table.
17 Q. And did the problem finally emerge? What did they ask from you
18 and from Colonel Beara?
19 A. They wanted an explanation for our involvement down there, the
20 way in which we did it. Well, they were talking about some other things,
21 too, but I didn't linger there for a long time, so I can't really
22 remember the course of the conversation all that well. All I know is
23 that they were surprised when they saw him come. At that time, I got a
24 call from Malinic over the communications equipment, and I had to go up
25 there and fetch Malinic.
1 Q. Why do you think that they were surprised when they saw Colonel
2 Beara arrive?
3 A. Well, they probably knew Colonel Beara. They knew that he was
4 from the intelligence security administration. They didn't expect to see
5 him, probably.
6 Q. So you left that room and you went to your superior officer
7 Malinic. Do you know how this conversation ended, and how was this whole
8 problem involving this group of paramilitary units solved?
9 A. I went out of the cafe to fetch Major Malinic, and I brought him
10 back to the room where Colonel Beara was talking to those men. Malinic
11 was present during that conversation, but soon after about an hour he
12 called me and said that I and my soldiers should leave Bratunac and go
13 back to our original unit, to Kasaba, in other words. He simply said,
14 Your task is done. All the other actions that followed after that were
15 carried out by the military police from Bratunac, from the Bratunac
17 Q. Please tell me, you said that you had confiscated this huge pile
18 of weapons and that you took it with you. Did this remain with the
19 military police, or was it ever returned to those persons?
20 A. It remained with the military police of the Bratunac Brigade, all
21 the weapons and all the equipment, and they kept a record of it.
22 Q. After that, were there any new problems with those persons
23 regarding what they did, failure to obey orders, and to place themselves
24 under the command of the regular units of the Republika Srpska army?
25 A. Well, after talking to Major Malinic on his return to Nova
1 Kasaba, he said that he had -- that they had placed themselves under the
2 command of the Republika Srpska army and that the problem was for the
3 most part solved.
4 Q. Fine.
5 MR. NIKOLIC: Your Honours, I have now dealt with one topic, so
6 perhaps we might finish now, and then I can launch on a new topic
8 JUDGE AGIUS: That's fine with us. Tomorrow we sit at 9 o'clock
9 in the morning, and we stand adjourned. Thank you. In the meantime,
10 before -- wait one moment. One moment.
11 Mr. Jevdevic, our rules require that since you are not finishing
12 your testimony today, you will be continuing tomorrow, that between today
13 and tomorrow you do not communicate with anyone on the subject matter of
14 your testimony. You shouldn't allow anyone to approach you, and you
15 shouldn't approach anyone to discuss the topics you are testifying about.
16 Is that clear?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
19 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.42 p.m.
20 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 23rd day of
21 July, 2008, at 9.00 a.m.