1 Monday, 27 October 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The accused Nikolic not present]
5 [The witness entered court]
6 --- Upon commencing at 9.38 a.m.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning, Madam Registrar. Could you kindly
8 call the case, please.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case
10 IT-05-88-T, The Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic, et al.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. Let's start from here. Good
12 morning, everybody. We are sitting pursuant to rule 15 bis for the time
13 being. Judge Stole will join us later on.
14 Today, accused Nikolic is not with us. We are already in
15 possession of the waiver, so we can proceed in his absence.
16 Prosecution today is represented by Mr. McCloskey and Mr. Thayer.
17 Amongst the Defence teams, I notice the absence of Mr. Bourgon,
18 Mr. Josse. That's it.
19 Mr. Jankovic, good morning to you.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Welcome back. We will soon be proceeding with your
22 testimony. In the meantime, be patient with us so that I raise two minor
23 matters, which we could resolve very quickly. Let's go into private
24 session for awhile, please.
25 [Private session]
11 Page 27358 redacted. Private session.
7 [Open session]
8 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
10 WITNESS: ZORAN JANKOVIC [Resumed]
11 [Witness answered through interpreter]
12 Examination by Mr. Lazarevic: [Continued]
13 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Jankovic. I hope you've had
14 an opportunity to have a good rest over the past few days. May we now
15 please continue with your examination-in-chief?
16 A. Good morning.
17 Q. On Thursday, we left it off with your departure from Doboj
18 towards Zvornik, and I was going to show you a number of documents that I
19 have prepared for you, so let's do that first. First of all, can we see
20 1D 4D394 in e-court, please. Can you see the document on the screen, Mr.
21 Jankovic? This is an order by the deputy Minister of the Interior dated
22 13 July 1995
24 You can see in the heading of the document that a reference is
25 made to the special police brigade, the commander, the special branch
1 police station in Doboj, the public security centre in Doboj, the command
2 staff of the police forces of the RS MUP for information and the CJB
3 Zvornik to the chief for information. And further on, it says, "In view
4 of the developments around Srebrenica, I hereby issue the following
5 order: Immediately former reinforced police unit which comprised the 1st
6 Company of the Doboj PJPs and partial forces of the Doboj SAP, which is
7 at the base in Doboj."
8 Further on, it says that "The unit is to report to Zvornik in the
9 course of the day where it will be assigned specific tasks."
10 You had an opportunity to see the document while you were being
11 prepared for the testimony. Can you now tell me, with regard to the
12 contents of the document here, a reference is made to the 1st Company of
13 the Doboj PJP; were you a member of the 1st PJP or some other company.
14 A. Yes, I saw the document during the preparations. This is a
15 dispatch by the Ministry of the Interior, pursuant to which I was
16 dispatched to Zvornik. The company number, I don't remember whether it
17 was the 1st or the 5th. I believe that it was the 5th. Maybe here it
18 should read 1 company of the PJP. In any case, I was the 5th company
19 from Doboj, and this is the order pursuant to which I was sent to
21 Q. Let me just ask you this: When you set out for Zvornik, was this
22 unit of the special detachment of the police in Doboj, did it leave with
24 A. No, they didn't.
25 Q. Did you have an opportunity to see them or encounter them either
1 on your way to Zvornik or once you were already there?
2 A. No, I never saw the special detachment.
3 Q. Did you have any connection or links with them, with the part of
4 the 5th detachment?
5 A. No, we didn't.
6 Q. Very well. We will no longer need this document, and now I would
7 like us to look at another document. May the Court please produce 4D62.
8 This is another order dated 14 July 1995, which was sent to the
9 Bijeljina CJB. What I'm interested in, again, first of all, who the
10 addressees of the order are. We can actually see in the upper part of
11 the document that the document speaks about the dispatch of the police
12 units which was sent to the SJBs in Brcko, Samac, Lopare, Ugljevik, and
13 Pelagicevo; then to the police stations in Bijeljina and Janja, to the
14 commanders thereof; the traffic safety police station in Bijeljina; the
15 border control police station in Bijeljina; and it says here, also, the
16 communications department of the Bijeljina CJB.
17 According to your information, are all these police stations that
18 were part of the security services centre of Bijeljina?
19 A. Yes. These are public security stations and police stations from
20 the territory of Bijeljina
21 Q. And now let's look at bullet point 4. Can this please be zoomed
22 in on the screen. It says here, "On arrival in the CJB Zvornik, the unit
23 commander is duty-bound to report to the command staff of the centre who
24 will assign him with the specific tasks." I'm asking you this just to
25 learn about the principle of the special police forces. Was your unit
1 dispatched in the same way as is indicated in this document? I.e., were
2 you instructed to report to the security services centre in Zvornik were
3 you were would be assigned specific task?
4 A. Yes. This was the principle, and this was how special police
5 units were dispatched.
6 Q. And let's now look at the bullet point 5 of this order. "PJP
7 members should be supplied with two combat kits, ammunition, and the
8 other equipment, which is necessary for the field mission, and attire
9 them in green camouflage uniform." Is that the same thing that you had?
10 Was that the same uniform that you had?
11 A. Yes. That's how we were sent, and this is exactly the equipment
12 and -- that we had on us. We had our personal weapons and combat kit and
13 the green camouflage uniform.
14 Q. Very well. We will no longer need this document. Thank you.
15 When you left Modrica, before your departure, were you told where you
16 were going?
17 A. We were only told that we were supposed to go to Zvornik where we
18 should report to the security services centre and await a further
19 instructions that would come from there.
20 Q. So you did not know concretely what your mission would be when
21 you left?
22 A. No, we did not have any concrete information.
23 Q. Could you please tell me when you arrived in Zvornik,
25 A. We arrived sometime in the afternoon, or rather, late afternoon.
1 Q. Very well. Tell me whether the buses stopped on the way.
2 A. The bus stopped close to the passenger bridge leading to Serbia
3 i.e., on the border crossing for pedestrians.
4 Q. Very well. What happened next? The bus pulled over. What
5 happened next? Did you all stay here? Did somebody leave?
6 A. Mr. Gavric got off the first bus and went to the security
7 services centre, and the rest of us remained on -- sitting on the buses.
8 A few got out to light a cigarette.
9 Q. And after awhile, did your company commander, Mr. Gavric, return?
10 A. Yes. Gavric returned within half an hour, maybe.
11 Q. And can you please tell me whether he told you where he had been,
12 who he had been with, what he had done there?
13 A. Yes. Just briefly, he told us that he went -- had gone to the
14 centre to talk to the deputy whose name, I believe, was Mane, and then he
15 told us that the buses should be on their way to the barracks.
16 Q. Very well. Did he tell you then what your mission and tasks
17 would be?
18 A. No, not at the time. Nothing concretely.
19 Q. What happened next? Did the buses continue? Did they go
21 A. Yes, we went to a building which I believe was the Standard
22 barracks, and then a soldier got on the first bus together with Gavric,
23 and then the buses continued. I don't know where they went, but they
24 took an asphalt road, and then we reached a narrow macadam road, and the
25 buses could not negotiate that.
1 Q. And just a few additional questions. You said that Gavric had
2 arrived with another soldier. Were they on the same bus? Did they get
3 on the same bus where you were, or --
4 A. Gavric and that soldier were on the first bus, and I was on the
5 second bus.
6 Q. So you did not have an opportunity to hear what they were saying
7 or communicate with them?
8 A. No.
9 Q. And now can you please continue. You arrived at the macadam
10 road. What happened next?
11 A. We got off the buses, and then on foot we proceeded along a dirt
12 path, which was leading towards a hill.
13 Q. Very well. Could you just approximately tell us what time of day
14 it was when you arrived at your destination?
15 A. It was night. It was already rather dark. It was after
16 nightfall, and I remember that we passed by a repeater. I remember that
18 Q. I would like us to look at another document. Could the Court
19 please produce P377. This is the -- page 132. I believe that it is the
20 same page in the English version. This is the logbook of the duty
21 operations officer of the Zvornik Brigade.
22 Could we please scroll down to the bottom part of the document
23 for the witness's benefit. I would like to show the witness the last
24 entry on this page.
25 Mr. Jankovic, in this logbook we have an entry indicating the
1 time 2000 hours, and after that you can see CJB-Mane, one unit of 100
2 soldiers arriving. You've already told us that there was a deputy chief
3 of the CJB under the name of Mane, and it says one unit of 100 soldiers
4 arriving. Would that approximately tally with the number of yours who
5 arrived with the 5th company?
6 A. Yes. That could be that. There were 100 or around 100 of us and
7 here, CJB Mane, I suppose that that's that. That's what I'm talking
9 Q. Very well. We will no longer need this document. Thank you.
10 And this may be a good point for me to ask you this: At the time, in
11 July 1995, did you know Mr. Ljubomir Borovcanin?
12 A. No.
13 Q. And this entire period from the moment you left from Modrica,
14 came to Zvornik - I'm going a little bit ahead - and were a participant
15 in certain actions and after that were captured, did you at any point
16 have the opportunity or the possibility to see Mr. Ljubomir Borovcanin?
17 A. No. I didn't see Mr. Borovcanin at all. I just heard that such
18 a person existed, but I never met him.
19 Q. Very well. You told us that you reached the end of the asphalt
20 road and then went along on the macadam road. Can you please tell us
21 what date this is? Is this the night of the 13th and 14th? Is this
23 A. Yes. This is the 13th in the evening, so it's the night between
24 the 13th and 14th of July.
25 Q. Very well. Can you please tell me if you found out what the name
1 of that sector was called, where you arrived and where you left the bus?
2 Do you remember the name of the village? If you can remember.
3 A. The village we reached was called Maricici. I found that out
4 later. At that moment, I didn't know that. I didn't have information
5 about the place that we had reached.
6 Q. All right. When you left the bus and set off, did anybody deploy
7 your unit? Did anyone tell you what to do, what you will continue to do?
8 A. There were no concrete assignments that night. In the course of
9 the night, we came to that village. We stationed ourselves in a wood.
10 We were all tired. We were resting there. We didn't have any concrete
12 Q. Very well. Let me just ask you one more question about this.
13 You already told us that you were issued with communication means. Were
14 you personally issued with such means when you arrived?
15 A. The communication devices were issued to me on the 14th in the
16 morning when it got light. I didn't have any communication devices
17 during the night. I got them from the company commander Gavric.
18 Q. All right. Let us now move to the morning of the 14th of July.
19 Can you please tell us what was happening in the morning of the 14th?
20 A. In the morning on the 14th, we made coffee, had breakfast; we
21 were relaxed in this wood perhaps until almost noon when I got
22 information that I was supposed to go to a meeting with Gavric.
23 Q. Very well. And did you go to the meeting? Who else was present?
24 What was discussed?
25 A. Yes. I did went to the meeting with Gavric. Another two platoon
1 commanders were there, myself, Gavric, and a member of the military.
2 Q. Can you tell me, what was the topic of the meeting? What did you
3 talk about? Did you get any concrete assignments at that meeting?
4 A. Yes. They explained to us -- Gavric explained to us where we
5 were, that location, and he told us what our assignment was; or rather,
6 he said that we had to get to Snagovo to some asphalt road where together
7 with the Army of Republika Srpska we would set up a line that would be
8 there in order to prevent a possible breakthrough of the Muslim forces
9 into the town of Zvornik
10 Q. Very well. And after that, did you go to carry out these
12 A. After that, we returned to our units, and I personally conveyed
13 to the other unit members what our task was. We prepared to move out.
14 Q. Very well. So can you please tell us how things proceeded. You
15 set out to establish that line, as you said. Can you please tell us how
16 events unfolded after that?
17 A. Sometime in the afternoon, perhaps around 3.00 p.m., we set off
18 in the direction of Snagovo. First, we passed through a large forest;
19 later, we crossed a meadow.
20 Q. Just one question before you go on. Tell me, if to the right of
21 your unit there was any other unit, were you in touch with them? Can you
22 please explain this?
23 A. To the right, there was a military formation. I don't know
24 exactly which formation, whether it was a platoon or a company. I had
25 personal contact with the commander of that formation. We moved
1 together. They also were moving towards Snagovo.
2 Q. Let's clarify. When you say you had personal contact, can you
3 explain what that specifically means? Did you stand next to him, or did
4 you have visual contact? Can you please explain this to us?
5 A. When we left Maricici, we had personal contact. We were a metre
6 away from each other. But later, we had visual contact; and after a
7 certain period of time, we couldn't see each other any more. We could
8 hear each other [as interpreted]. We were not linked in in the network.
9 Q. Just one correction for the transcript. On page 12, it says "We
10 could hear each other." This is line 8 and 9, but you said that you
11 could not hear each other. This is just something that I would like to
13 A. We could not hear each other.
14 Q. Very well. So you told us that you passed through a forest and
15 that you reached a meadow. Can you tell me how things proceeded from
17 A. We crossed this meadow, and we reached a brook, and there was
18 another forest in front of this brook or creek. We stopped there
19 briefly. I spoke with my men, told them that I didn't have anymore
20 contact with the soldiers.
21 After that, I heard a strong -- a loud detonation to the left
22 from the place where I was standing; and after that, I could hear
23 infantry weapons fire. Evidently battle had commenced, and it was
24 getting closer to me. After 15 minutes, we were also exposed to fire,
25 and we had a fire and attack immediately in front of us. Bombs were
1 falling. Bullets were also whizzing around us above our heads.
2 Q. All right. Very well. Can you tell us what happened then, who
3 was with you, and how this attack continued? And of course, you can
4 explain to us in your testimony what happened then.
5 A. We tried to return fire, but it was useless in view of the
6 position where we were. We were in a creek, and in front of us there was
7 an incline and a forest. I could see that the whole unit was in danger.
8 We had one man who was wounded, and I decided to try to pull out the unit
9 from that ambush.
10 I took three of my companions, members of my platoon, and first
11 went to the right and then forward along the incline or the slope. I
12 moved 1 or 200 metres, perhaps, but I couldn't observe the Muslims, and
13 we were still under fire. We were in an ambush, caught in the fire. I
14 told my companions to find some kind of shelter or shield, and then I
15 went by myself some 50 metres forward to see what was going on, to see
16 which forces were attacking us.
17 Q. Can you tell us if at one point you were captured and how this
18 came about?
19 A. Yes. At one point, I was among a group of Muslim soldiers who
20 were well camouflaged and concealed, and I was literally captured; I was
21 caught. After that, I disarmed and they took me some 100 metres farther
22 forward to a hillock. The whole situation was being observed by a member
23 of my platoon, but I gave him a sign at one point not to make any moves
24 because I knew that that would mean the end of me.
25 Q. Very well. Can you tell us, after that moment when you were
1 captured, where you were taken?
2 A. I was taken to a hillock not far from there, and a member of the
3 Muslim army placed his foot on my head, took out a knife, which he placed
4 on my neck, and then he gave my Motorola to me, and he handed it to me
5 and told me to call my commander to immediately stop firing, which I did.
6 Q. Can you please tell me what happened then, after you called your
7 commander? Of course, you are talking about Gavric; is that correct?
8 A. Yes. I only had a connection with Gavric and the commanders of
9 the other two platoons. I called Gavric and asked him to do what the
10 member of the Muslim army said, but I said that nine of my colleagues
11 were also captured with me, which was not true. I was the only one who
12 was captured. I said that they would kill me if they continued to fire.
13 Q. And now, can you please tell me if the fire stopped after you
14 called Commander Gavric?
15 A. The firing didn't stop immediately. It stopped a little bit
16 later. The news spread fast that I was captured, and some commanders and
17 commandeers of the Muslim army began to arrive. Some said I should be
18 killed. Some said I should be left alive, that I was valuable, and they
19 decided to take me with them. Again, I mentioned that once I came to the
20 hillock, I was surprised by the fact that I saw with my very own eyes at
21 least 5 to 6.000 people. I saw an enormous column that was in front of
22 me, both to the left and to the right of me, and it was moving. It was
23 independent of the unit that had captured me.
24 Q. I would just -- well, excuse me. I don't want to interrupt your
25 testimony, but I would just like to put some questions to you about this
1 column that you saw, and you gave us the number that you estimate of
2 people who were in the column. Was the column made up only of men, or
3 did you notice any details? Were there any women or children?
4 A. I think that there were no children in the column. At least, I
5 didn't see any. There were some women, not many. The column mainly
6 included middle-aged men, and there were also some elderly men.
7 Q. Can you please tell us, these men that you were able to see in
8 the column, were they armed; and are you able to tell us to what extent
9 they were armed?
10 A. Yes, they were armed. In my estimate, 80 percent of them carried
12 Q. And can you please tell me, were you able to notice the part of
13 the column where you were, the part of the column that you were able to
14 see, were the men in that part of the column wearing uniforms?
15 A. Well, there was everything. There were complete uniforms, parts
16 of uniforms. There were also civilians. It was a mixture.
17 Q. When you say there were civilians, were you able to see if those
18 people in civilian clothing also were armed or not? Can you tell us?
19 A. There were armed people. A number of them were armed. There
20 were some people who had hunting rifles or semi-automatic rifles of an
21 older type.
22 Q. Very well. Can you please tell me if at one point you continued
23 to move in the column?
24 A. Yes. The column kept moving the whole time. It didn't stop.
25 Not even at the point in time when I was captured, the column did not
1 stop. I was captured by the flank security of the column. The column
2 was moving in a formation. It had its flank security, forward security,
3 rear scouts. It was an orderly formation, and that's how the column
4 moved. All the prominent people from Srebrenica were in the column.
5 Q. Who did you see of the Srebrenica leadership or the military
6 commanders of the 28th Division? Who did you see personally? Can you
7 remember? Could you please tell us?
8 A. I personally saw Zulfo Tursunovic, and I also saw the commander
9 of the 28th Division whose name I don't know. I only know that he had
10 replaced Naser Oric who had fled Srebrenica before Srebrenica fell.
11 Q. All that time, were you in the same part of the column, or did it
12 come a time when you came closer to the front of the column or when you
13 found yourself closer to the middle of the column? Can you please be
14 more specific and give us some detail?
15 A. I was mostly in the middle of the column or closer to its front.
16 I never moved back to the rear, and this is also where the command was
17 within the first third of the column.
18 Q. You've already told us that Zulfo Tursunovic was there. Could
19 you please describe the event when you came close to Zulfo Tursunovic?
20 A. I had a personal contact with him. The members of the military
21 that captured me brought me to Tursunovic and ordered me to kneel in
22 front of him. He was sitting on a horse. He was mounted on a horse, and
23 he asked me about my personal details, what my name was, where I was
24 from. He also asked me what unit I belonged to. And then he told me,
25 Very well, my son, I won't kill you; I need you alive. And then I was
1 taken away from him.
2 Q. Very well. And you have also told us about how the column
3 advanced. Did you have an impression that it was a combat column,
4 organised column, or was it a chaotic formation that was moving in a
5 rather unorganized way?
6 A. As I already told you, in my view the column was well organised.
7 There was nothing chaotic about that. They had scouts, leaders, guides,
8 people who were familiar with the terrain. And they also had elite units
9 that protected the unit, the column, in my view that had been composed of
10 the youngest and most capable men. At least, that's the way I saw it.
11 Q. Very well. You've already told us that you had an opportunity to
12 see that a large number of the men in the column were armed. What kind
13 of weapons did you notice among the members of the BiH Army who were in
14 the column?
15 A. I personally was astonished when I saw their weaponry. Let me
16 just give you an example of the kind of weapons that I had never saw in
17 our police or our military. Those were rifles with nitroglycerin bullets
18 and they also had machine -- two 12.7 machine guns, Browning --
19 Brownings, sniper rifles, 84-millimetre machine guns. Their weapons were
20 really good. They were really well armed.
21 Q. In addition to the infantry weapons that you just mentioned as
22 having had an opportunity to see, did you have any artillery pieces among
23 the soldiers that were moving in the column?
24 A. Yes. I noticed Brownings that were mounted on horses, and I also
25 noticed anti-helicopter rockets known as "strijela" or arrows.
1 Q. Did you also have an opportunity to see among the soldiers who
2 were moving with the column some signals means, communications means?
3 Did they have that as well?
4 A. Yes. They had very good communication means, which were also
5 mounted on horses. I saw huge batteries that they were carrying and big
6 antennas. I believe that they had some military communications means
7 that I'd never seen before, so I wouldn't be able to tell you what they
9 Q. Very well. And while you were moving with the column, did you
10 have an occasion to hear any conversations among the soldiers in the
11 column? What were they talking about? What was the topic of their
12 discussions there?
13 A. Yes, I could hear conversations amongst the people who were in
14 the column. They mostly talked about the way they would cross into the
15 free territory in the Tuzla
16 the command of the Army of Republika Srpska with this regard. They
17 mentioned me as their possible victim or a chip-in for exchange.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Lazarevic, you are all aware that we started
19 almost 40 minutes late today because of --
20 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes, yes, Your Honour. This is why I want to --
21 JUDGE AGIUS: -- a technical problem that we had which couldn't
22 be resolved earlier. We've discussed amongst ourselves how best to
23 proceed. Our suggestion is that the break will be at 10.40, in other
24 words, in about 15 -- almost 15 minutes from now, and it will be reduced
25 to 20 minutes, so we try to regain a little bit of what we lost. And the
1 next break will also be of 20 minutes. So we'll have a break at 10.40,
2 and we'll resume at 11.00. Thank you.
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: Thank you, Your Honour, for this guidance.
4 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Jankovic, my next question is this: Did all
5 the people in the column share the same point of view as to whether to
6 proceed, whether to go back, whether to keep on moving? Did you have an
7 occasion to hear any of their opinion with this regard?
8 A. Yes, I had a lot of opportunity to hear that. Their positions
9 were not unique. They were split. Even in the command, there were
10 people who did not agree with the commander's decisions. Some wanted to
11 kidnap me and surrender together with me. There were even such stories
12 -- there was a lot of confusion among them, and they were not united.
13 They were, rather, divided. They did not have a united front.
14 Q. Did you have an occasion to hear or see some situations when
15 people committed suicide or when there was an internal showdown among the
16 people moving the column?
17 A. I personally witnessed only one such case, and I heard from my
18 guards that there had been a number of such situations where people had
19 killed each other. There were even such situations that a father shot a
20 son or a brother shot at a brother, and I said on occasion to see on the
21 15th when a soldier had activated a hand grenade which killed him and
22 another man and wounded four or five other men.
23 Q. Very well. In addition to the contact that you already described
24 for us with Commander Gavric using a Motorola, were you asked later on
25 during your advancement to re-establish the contact with somebody using a
2 A. Yes, they did ask me to do that. I don't know who my contact
3 was, but I know that I did; and every time I talked to somebody, I heard
4 on the side of the Army of Republika Srpska that possibilities were
5 sought for the corridor to be opened and for the column to be let through
6 in the desired direction.
7 Q. And did you personally communicate with somebody, or was the
8 communication established using a Motorola?
9 A. I don't think my Motorola was used. I think it was done using
10 other communications means.
11 Q. Very well. Give me a general picture of the relationship or
12 attitude of the BiH Army members towards you from the moment you were
13 captured during the time when you moved with the column?
14 A. It was rather volatile. At one point, I had an impression that I
15 was a very important person. I was a privileged person, well protected,
16 and I did not suffer any unpleasant situations; and this lasted up to the
17 moment when we crossed the separation line close to the village of Nezuk
18 Q. Very well. We will come to that moment in a minute, but now I
19 just wanted to see in more general terms whether your personal effects
20 had been taken from you, and if they were, what was taken from you?
21 A. All my personal effects were taken away from me. They even took
22 off my boots, and the last thing that they took from me was my gold ring,
23 and this was a counter favour for them having put a bandage on my head.
24 Q. And while you were moving with the column, did you receive any
25 food, any water?
1 A. Absolutely no.
2 Q. And what was the situation in the column when it comes to food
3 and water in more general terms?
4 A. I believe that the situation was really bad. They did not have
5 any food. They mostly ate fruit and forest berries. They had some
6 water, which they had obtained from the streams and brooks.
7 Q. And as you were moving with the column on the 14th, 15th and 16th
8 of July, can you remember the places that you passed through?
9 A. I'm not familiar with the terrain. However, I learned from the
10 conversations that were taking place in the column that we had across the
11 road Zvornik Caparde and that we also crossed over Crni Vrh, and I know
12 that I heard them saying that we had crossed the village of Baljkovica
13 we were approaching the village of Nezuk
14 Q. And can you please tell me when, approximately following the
15 chronology and the dates, when was it that you arrived in the village of
17 A. It was on the 16th of July, sometime in the afternoon.
18 Q. Very well. And now tell me, how did you spend your nights? For
19 example, the night between the 14th and the 15th of July?
20 A. We kept on moving during the night. They actually made sure that
21 they moved less during the day and more during the night. I know that
22 the hardest night was between the 15th and the 16th of July. It was
23 raining and there was hail. Actually, there was a storm.
24 Q. And -- very well. We come to the 16th. Can you please tell us
25 what happened when you arrived near Baljkovica?
1 A. During the night on the 15th, I heard a conversation - actually,
2 I overheard a conversation - over the radio. Somebody from the Army
3 Republika Srpska asked for the main body of the column to wait for a
4 smaller part of the column to arrive from the Caparde sector. They were
5 supposed to cross the open line on the following day when they would be
6 allowed passage. However, this created a dilemma among the members of
7 the command of the column. There were some who thought that this was a
8 trap, and the others believed the story.
9 I also heard that there was a fire opened because of that among
10 them. However, the final decision of the command was to attempt the
11 breakthrough immediately despite of the promise that the corridor would
12 be open the following day, and this is what was done.
13 Q. Very well. Could you please describe the events that unfolded on
14 the 16th when you passed Baljkovica, and what happened next?
15 A. I've already told you that they --
16 Q. Just a moment, please. Could you give us just a brief outline
17 because I have other things that I would like to move on.
18 A. They decided to attempt a breakthrough despite the promises
19 they'd had heard from the Army of Republika Srpska. Units were
20 established that were supposed to attempt the breakthrough. The fighting
21 started in the morning, and at one point I heard them shouting and
22 celebrating, and they said that the road towards Nezuk was open. They
23 took me with them. I passed through Baljkovica across the trenches that
24 had been abandoned, and we crossed over to the territory around the
25 village of Nezuk.
1 Q. Just one more question before the break. When was it, at what
2 time when you arrived in Nezuk according to your best recollection?
3 A. I believe that it was around 1800 hours on the 16th of July.
4 Q. Very well.
5 MR. LAZAREVIC: This is an appropriate time to take a break.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. The break, as I said, will be of 20 minutes
7 duration. Thank you.
8 --- Recess taken at 10.39 a.m.
9 --- On resuming at 11.04 a.m.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Lazarevic.
11 MR. LAZAREVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Jankovic, it's probably my mistake, but I
13 just would like to correct this. At one point, I showed you the duty
14 operations officer notebook of the Zvornik Brigade --
15 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel please repeat the number of
16 the exhibit.
17 MR. LAZAREVIC:
18 Q. -- and I asked you if you knew -- P377, page 132, where you saw
19 Mane from the Zvornik centre of public security. I just wanted to say
20 when I rechecked it, this is an entry for the 14th, so that was the day
21 when you had already been captured, so we just wanted to clarify that.
22 Thus, that entry cannot refer to your unit, obviously.
23 A. All right.
24 Q. Very well. What I wanted to continue with are some video-clips.
25 This is the video material that was disclosed to us by the Prosecution,
1 number V0003676, and this is 4D616. I don't want us to look at the
2 entire clip, which is quite long; I just wanted us to look at three short
3 excerpts on the tape, and these are excerpts beginning from 2 minutes 40
4 seconds and last until 3.50; then insert beginning at 5.50 to 7.00; and
5 the third insert beginning at 8.20 and beginning [as interpreted] at
6 10.05. I would like us to look at these three video clips first, and
7 then I will put my questions to you.
8 [Videotape played]
9 MR. LAZAREVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Thank you. This is what we wanted to show. Mr. Jankovic, during
11 proofing for your testimony, you had the opportunity to look at these
12 video clips. Can you please tell me if you recognise where this was
13 actually filmed?
14 A. This was recorded in Nezuk. I recognise it.
15 Q. Can you please tell me if you had the opportunity to recognise
16 anything else that would correspond with your experience relating to the
17 column, anything specific such as trenches, cross trenches or anything
18 that you had had the opportunity to see?
19 A. Yes. This is the route that I had passed. You can see that the
20 trenches are abandoned. I noticed, for example, that you don't see
21 anywhere any killed or wounded persons, and you can also see here what I
22 said, and that is that there are no children in the column and that there
23 are very few women.
24 You can also see the weapons that the people in the column had.
25 You were able to see here, a soldier had a rocket. They had machine
1 guns, automatic rifles, bullet cartridges. Some of them had not such
2 good rifles, like hunting rifles or semi-automatic rifles.
3 Q. Let me ask you this: Of course, we had the possibility to see
4 there were a large number of persons here in civilian clothing, but they
5 carried weapons. Can you please tell me if this was something that
6 frequently was the case in the column?
7 A. Yes. You could see in the footage. I saw it, too, when I was in
8 the column. I think that there were quite a lot of such cases where
9 people were wearing civilian clothing and carried weapons, or they
10 perhaps wore a piece of uniform, the shirt or the waistcoat or the
12 Q. I'm sorry. We didn't have sound. We had technical problems, but
13 you can hear throughout firing, though. Were you able as you were
14 passing to hear firing; and if you did, can you please tell us what that
15 is all about?
16 A. When I was passing in that area, there was no firing in the sense
17 of combat. There was only firing into the air by those people who were
18 probably celebrating the fact that they had crossed to Nezuk territory.
19 Q. Very well. Unfortunately, we don't have a transcript for this
20 clip, but we will provide it so that we could hear what was actually
21 going on here. That is one of the duties of the Defence to provide that,
22 and we are going to do that.
23 All right. So you were taken to Nezuk. Can you please tell us
24 what happened to you, then, once you crossed these trenches.
25 A. When I was crossing the lines where the trenches were, as I
1 mentioned, they started to physically abuse me. They beat me with all
2 kinds of things. A man beat me with crutches, one with a rifle. Another
3 one used his feet and hands, and I sustained a lot of head injuries, also
4 injuries on other parts of my body. I was beaten all over.
5 Q. Can you please tell me where you were taken when you got to
7 A. I was held at a checkpoint of the military police. Actually, it
8 was the first military police checkpoint. I was put into some kind of
9 shed, and I recognised a man there who went to school with me in
11 policeman in Bratunac. He took my particulars, and he also said that he
12 recognised me, and I spent about an hour there.
13 Q. Can you please tell me, other than yourself, were there any other
14 Serb prisoners in Nezuk?
15 A. Yes, there was a certain Milan Tesic with me in the same shed.
16 He's from the Zvornik area. He was a member of the Army of Republika
17 Srpska. He was also pretty much beaten. His face was bloody. He kept
18 saying that he was a cook, and they kept beating him, asking him to
19 confess that he was in some artillery outfit.
20 Q. Once you came to Nezuk, were there any attempts to exchange you,
21 and if so, can you please describe when this was and what happened?
22 A. They took me to a garage in the village of Nezuk
23 And then Semso Muminovic [phoen] arrived, and he said that I would be
24 exchanged on the same day, that same day. Allegedly he had agreed to do
25 that together with Mr. Vinko Pandurevic.
1 Q. And were you exchanged?
2 A. No, I wasn't exchanged that day. I was taken from the garage --
3 actually, Tesic was taken from the garage, and I didn't see him anymore.
4 After I was exchanged, my brother told me that he had followed Tesic's
5 trail and that he had found him and he had been exchanged, but only a day
6 or two after that I was handed over to a certain Foco who continued with
7 me that day and the whole night. I spent that time in Nezuk, and that
8 was the first time since I was captured that I was given a little bit of
9 food and water.
10 Q. All right. Do you know of any attempts by the Serbian side to
11 organise your exchange? Were you informed about there having been such
13 A. Yes, I was informed about it. On the 17th in the morning, I was
14 held in a cellar of a house. Most probably members of the B & H Army
15 from Srebrenica came there, and on several occasions they physically
16 mistreated me, and I -- and inflicted serious bodily wounds on me. Later
17 Foco came, and he said that my troubles were at an end and that I would
18 be freed that evening at 6.00. However, this did not happen.
19 Q. I would like to look at a document now relating to attempts to
20 exchange you for other detainees. Can we look at 4D552, please.
21 You've had the opportunity to see the document during your
22 proofing, and it says, Re: Zoran Jankovic, information about his arrest
23 sent from the Doboj public security centre -- actually, from the Doboj
24 public security centre traffic safety police station, Modrica. You can
25 see your name, and you can see the date, 2nd of August, 1995, there. I
1 would like us to look at the last two paragraphs, please. At the top,
2 your particulars are referred to and information about when you were
3 captured and the last time you communicated, and that was on the 17th of
4 July around 1800 hours in the village of Nezuk
5 information about you has been furnished to the exchange commission of
6 the Krajina Corps in Banja Luka, and there is a request to ask the
7 exchange commission through the MUP at the level of the RS MUP for the
8 purpose of releasing and exchanging policeman Zoran Jankovic.
9 Now that we've seen this document, can you please explain if your
10 exchange actually materialized in this period?
11 A. No. The document confirms what I said, that on the 17th of July,
12 around 1800 hours I was taken to the separation line by Foco to be
13 allegedly released. However, I was brought back for reasons unknown to
14 me, and the exchange did not take place.
15 Q. Very well. I would now like in the briefest possible way to hear
16 what happened to you from the moment you crossed into Nezuk. Can you
17 just tell us how long you spent in different detention centres?
18 A. After the exchange attempt fell through, I was taken to Sapna
19 where I spent the night. Then during the night, an attack was carried
20 out by the Sapna intervention platoon to the place where I was captured.
21 I found this out from Redjo Mesanovic. They wanted to kill me. The
22 following day, Redjo transferred me to what was, according to him, a safe
23 location, and in the afternoon then to Zivinice, to the military police
24 command in Zivinice. That's where I spent a few hours, and then they
25 took me to the Djordjevik [phoen] mine, those policemen, and that's where
1 they locked me up.
2 I was locked up in that mine for 15 days. At one -- I was
3 located in a room with metal doors, and it looked like a solitary
4 confinement cell. So I fell very -- gravely ill there. All my wounds
5 got infected. I was just given two pills for medicine.
6 During that time, I was taken to a place by the commander of the
7 military police, a certain Kabasi, so that I could speak with Mr.
8 Pandurevic via the radio to convince him that I was alive or assure him
9 that I was alive. I spent 15 days in Djordjevik, and when I was found by
10 the ICRC team, or actually, was on its way to discover me, that same
11 person, Amo Kabasi, took me to a different location, to the village of
12 Kovaci to the football stadium to a changing room, and this was before
13 the ICRC team managed to find me.
14 Q. Can you please tell me how long you spent in this changing room
15 of the stadium in Kovaci?
16 A. I spent about a month there.
17 Q. And then what happened? Were you transferred somewhere else?
18 A. In late August, I was transferred to the barracks Husinska Buna
19 in Tuzla
20 solitary confinement cells of 1 by 2 metres. I was locked up in one of
21 them, and I spent two months there in that cell.
22 Q. After that, were you transferred somewhere else? Just tell us
23 where and the period.
24 A. Yes. I was transferred to the town at the -- to the military
25 police command of some 5th detachment of the military police. This was
1 in January. I spent 21 days in the cellar of that building, after which
2 I was returned to the barracks. This was sometime in February. After
3 two days, I was transferred to the central jail, and then in late
4 February 1996, I was registered by the International Committee of the Red
6 Q. Very well. And during that entire period of your captivity, were
7 you interrogated? Did you have that kind of questioning by various
8 organs of the B & H Army or police?
9 A. There was some interrogation, but I was never officially
10 interrogated because I was not officially recorded as a prisoner. They
11 could have killed me. I wasn't registered anywhere.
12 Q. And during that time when you were interrogated, did you sign any
13 kind of statement, or were you able to read back what they possibly wrote
15 A. From what I can recall, I didn't sign any statement. There were
16 some interviews, but there was no official statement, and even if they
17 did take a statement, I was not able to read what it said in the
18 statement, and I didn't sign any statements.
19 Q. Mr. Jankovic, we showed you two official notes during your
20 preparations for this testimony. We had received those from the
21 Prosecutor's Office, and they concerned the interviews with you. You had
22 an opportunity to review the notes. What are your comments? Is this
23 what you said? Does this contain information that you provided?
24 A. Yes, I saw the official notes. One was compiled by the military
25 security and the other by the civilian security. I believe that these
1 were only the results of the work of some operatives in these services
2 who made their notes. I also made similar notes in my service, and these
3 notes contain my personal data and some other things that are correct,
4 but there's also a lot of information that they based on their operative
5 work or their personal information that have not much to do with me.
6 This is not correct.
7 Q. Let me just ask you, the official notes that we're talking about,
8 you did not have an occasion to see them before the Borovcanin Defence
9 counsel showed them to you?
10 A. That's correct. I never saw them. These are not my statements.
11 They are just official notes, and even on top of that, the official note
12 that was compiled by the military security services, I believe that it is
13 totally false. It says there that a statement was taken from me on the
14 17th at 10.00. At that time I was in Nezuk in the cellar, and at that
15 particular time I was being beaten.
16 Q. Very well. And now could you please tell me, how much time did
17 you spend in captivity in total, and when were you released?
18 A. The total days spent in captivity were 850 -- 252 days, 8 and a
19 half months. I was set free on the 24th March, 1996, in the sector of
20 Doboj municipalities.
21 Q. As a result of your captivity and the ill treatment that you were
22 subject to, did you suffer any consequences? Did your health suffer?
23 A. Of course my health suffered greatly. As a result, I'm currently
24 a retired policeman, and I have certain health problems.
25 Q. Very well. I'm not going to insist on you telling us any more
1 detail of that. I have just a few more questions.
2 Did you have an occasion to meet Mr. Ljubomir Borovcanin?
3 A. Yes. I first saw Mr. Ljubomir Borovcanin when he came to visit
4 me in my house, in my apartment on behalf of the Republika Srpska MUP
5 after the exchange in late March 1996.
6 Q. Mr. Borovcanin represented the MUP and came to visit you. Can
7 you give us some detail of that encounter with Mr. Borovcanin?
8 A. He arrived with another colleague from the MUP, and with my
9 commander they came to see me, to see how I was doing and what I looked
10 like, whether I was in need of something after the ordeal I'd been
11 through. We sat down in my apartment, and we had an informal
12 conversation with a cup of coffee and a glass of juice.
13 Q. And after that, did you have an occasion to see Mr. Borovcanin
15 A. Yes. I saw him again in the MUP building in Bijeljina when I
16 came to Bijeljina. I visited Mr. Borovcanin and some other people whom I
17 knew there from before.
18 Q. And in addition to the two encounters that you have just
19 described for us, did you have any other encounters with Mr. Borovcanin?
20 A. No. Only these two. No others.
21 MR. LAZAREVIC: Thank you very much, Mr. Jankovic. I have no
22 further questions for you.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Mr. Zivanovic, do you have any
1 MR. ZIVANOVIC: No, Your Honours. Thank you.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Mr. Ostojic.
3 MR. OSTOJIC: No questions.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Ms. Nikolic.
5 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] No questions, Your Honours.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Fauveau.
7 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] No question, Mr. President.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Krgovic?
9 MR. KRGOVIC: [Previous translation continues]... Your Honour.
10 Just some qualifications.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
12 Cross-examination by Mr. Krgovic:
13 Q. Mr. Jankovic, first of all, good morning. Let me introduce
14 myself. My name is Dragan Krgovic, and I represent General Milan Gvero.
15 I'll have some questions for you. In answering my learned friend's
16 questions, you answered a type of weaponry that the Muslims in the column
17 had. You mentioned a heavy machine gun, Browning. Is that an
18 anti-aircraft machine gun?
19 A. Yes. This is a machine gun that can be used in anti-aircraft
20 Defence, but it can also be used as an anti-infantry weapon. It has a
21 large calibre, 12.7 millimetre. This is a machine gun that you can,
22 indeed, use in anti-aircraft defence.
23 Q. And it is mounted so that it's barrel can be directed vertically?
24 A. Yes, this machine gun has a metal feet or a metal postument.
25 MR. KRGOVIC: Thank you, sir. Thank you, Your Honours. I have
1 no further questions for this witness.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Krgovic. Mr. Haynes?
3 MR. HAYNES: Just a few, Mr. President.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, go ahead.
5 Cross-examination by Mr. Haynes:
6 Q. Good morning, Mr. Jankovic. As you know, I represent Vinko
8 You told us of an event immediately following your capture when
9 you were forced to make a radio call to your commander, Mico Gavric. Do
10 you remember that?
11 A. Yes, I remember that. I remember when I called my commander,
12 Mico Gavric, over the radio.
13 Q. And during the course of that radio conversation with Mr. Gavric,
14 you told him that there were nine of your unit who were being held
15 captive. That's also correct, isn't it?
16 A. Correct. I did say that, but it was not nine of my colleagues
17 who were held captive. It was just me.
18 Q. Was it your idea to say that, or were you told to say it?
19 A. I was ordered to say that by this man. I said that my head was
20 on the ground. He put his foot on my head and placed his knife at my
21 throat, and that's when I uttered those words, i.e., I repeated after
23 Q. Thank you very much. Now, you've told us about communications
24 between the Muslim forces and the Army of Republika Srpska during the
25 course of the 15th of July. And so that we're clear, that is not
1 communication made via your Motorola radio, is it?
2 A. That's correct. It was not my Motorola radio. I don't know
3 where my Motorola had ended by then.
4 Q. And how was it that you became aware of those communications?
5 Was that because you were present with the commanders who were making the
6 calls or because those commanders told you what was being negotiated?
7 A. I was there. I was present there, and I even used that same
8 communications means to talk. I believe that they wanted me to confirm
9 that I was still alive, that I was still there, that they wanted to use
10 me as a sort of guarantee.
11 Q. Thank you. And your recollection is that by the end of the 15th
12 of July, the position was that the Serbian forces were prepared to let
13 the column walk through to Nezuk but that the Muslim forces did not trust
14 this offer and so did not take it up; is that correct?
15 A. Yes, precisely so. That's what I said.
16 Q. And in particular, the request of the Serbian forces that the
17 column, as it were, bunch up before it walked through to the free
18 territory, was regarded as a trap, rather than as a device to ensure that
19 no stragglers were left behind?
20 A. I believe that some of the people in the column really saw it
21 that way, and that was the moment when there were some problems or
22 conflicts among the members of the command of that column as a result of
24 Q. Thank you, Mr. Jankovic. You've brought me on to my next
25 question, which is: Situated, as you were, close to the commanders
1 within the column, your assessment in summary was this, wasn't it, that
2 though it was well armed and in a reasonably good formation, moral within
3 the column was very low, and the commanders were in conflict with one
5 A. That was my impression, yes.
6 Q. Just one more thing. Did you see, during the time that you were
7 with the column, evidence that the column was suffering significant
9 A. Yes. I did see on a few occasions several dead bodies along the
10 path on which the column was moving.
11 Q. During the time that you were with the column, did it ever come
12 under heavy artillery fire?
13 A. No. There was no artillery fire on the column while I was with
14 the column. Not for a single moment did I notice or feel a shell falling
15 on the column. I was with the column throughout those two days. On the
16 16th, there was some shelling but in a distance. Maybe 3 or 4 kilometres
17 away from the column one could hear artillery fire.
18 Q. Did you form the view that that was fire that was coming from
19 Nezuk and the Muslim forces there?
20 A. Yes, that was indeed my impression. I believe that that was
21 around the time when we were supposed to cross over to Nezuk or maybe a
22 few hours before that.
23 Q. Lastly this: I think when you were crossing the trenches to the
24 free territory, you became aware, firstly, of one solitary dead Serbian
25 soldier; is that right?
1 A. That's right. There was a stream and --
2 Q. I'm sorry. I interrupted you. Complete your answer.
3 A. There was a stream, and in the stream I saw a dead body lying.
4 The dead body was of a soldier in the camouflage uniform of the Army of
5 Republika Srpska, and the comment I heard from the people who had taken
6 me in, who were leading me, was that they had killed him at that same
8 Q. I think you also saw a further pile of bodies which you concluded
9 were mainly Muslim soldiers?
10 A. Yes. At one point, I saw as many as maybe 50 or so bodies, and I
11 believe that most of them were Muslim soldiers because they did not have
12 complete uniforms, which made them look similar to the people, or rather,
13 soldiers in the column.
14 MR. HAYNES: Thank you very much, Mr. Jankovic. I did say to you
15 when we met briefly last week that I didn't think I'd have any questions
16 for you, but I'm sorry to have broken my word.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Haynes. Mr. Thayer, we'll have the
18 break at 12.20.
19 MR. THAYER: Thank you, Mr. President. I will conclude my cross
20 before the break.
21 Cross-examination by Mr. Thayer:
22 Q. Good morning, sir. My name is Nelson Thayer, and I'll be asking
23 you some questions on behalf of the Prosecution.
24 A. Good morning, Mr. Thayer.
25 Q. I first want to take you back to 14 July when you were heading
1 towards Snagovo with your fellow PJP officers. You told us about a VRS
2 officer who was your neighbour to the right. Now, I know it was 13 years
3 ago, I just want to find out whether as you sit here today you by any
4 chance remember the name of that VRS officer.
5 A. No, I don't remember his name.
6 Q. Okay. I understand from the proofing note I received from my
7 friends that after reviewing various statements that you gave, you stated
8 that the statement that you gave to the Modrica basic court in June of
9 1997, you consider to be your most accurate statement of these events; is
10 that correct?
11 A. Yes, that is correct.
12 Q. There's a reference in the report, and I can show it to you if
13 you need it, but it's a pretty simple question. There's a reference in
14 your report to you seeing a burned ambulance at some point. Do you
15 remember that, sir?
16 A. I remember an ambulance. I don't know whether I told you or
17 whether I indeed said that it had been burned. I may have said that it
18 was damaged, but in any case, at the moment when I saw it, it wasn't on
19 fire. I'm sure of that. I said that I had seen the vehicle in the
20 Baljkovica sector.
21 Q. Okay. And shortly after you referred to this destroyed ambulance
22 in your statement, you refer to Mr. Tesic, and --
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. I think you referred to him today as Milan Tesic. I'd like to
25 ask you whether you also heard him referred to as Mile or Milos Tesic?
1 A. That's not what I heard. When we were in the shed and when Redjo
2 asked him what his name was, he said that it was Milan Tesic.
3 Q. Okay. It's not a big point, sir, but if we can just look at 4D
4 00553 very quickly, page 5 of the original.
5 Sir, if you look in the first paragraph there. I think it's one,
6 two, three, four, five, six, seven lines down, there's a reference to an
7 individual named Tesic in this statement. Do you see that, sir? It's up
9 A. Yes, I do.
10 Q. And I just note that here in the statement his name is written
11 down as Mile Tesic. Did they get it wrong in the statement, or do you
12 think your recollection now might be a little bit off about whether it
13 was Milan
14 A. I'm not a hundred percent sure. It could well be Milo or Milan
15 It is one in the same in our parts. Maybe his name was Milan and his
16 name -- nickname was Milo
17 Q. Okay. Like I said, it's not a big deal, sir. Did you ever hear
18 that Mr. Tesic had been in that ambulance that was destroyed that you
19 saw? Did you ever hear anything about that, sir?
20 A. No, I never heard anything about that.
21 Q. Okay. And before I get to my last couple of questions, just to
22 clarify one part of your testimony in answer to my friend from the
23 Pandurevic team's questions, you referred - and again, this may have to
24 do with nicknames and so forth - you referred to your PJP company
25 commander as Mico Gavric. I think you testified that his name was Milan
1 Gavric. Are they one in the same to you, or was his name Milan, in fact,
2 and not Mico? Just so the record is clear.
3 A. I believe that I did not misspoke. The only person who may have
4 misspoken was Mr. Pandurevic's lawyer. I believe I noticed that he said
5 Mico, but actually, it wasn't Mico. It was Milan Gavric.
6 Q. Okay, sir. You were asked some questions about the efforts to
7 have you exchanged. What efforts were you aware of at the time, or for
8 that matter, have you become aware of since that time to have you
10 A. I don't understand your question, sir. Are you referring to the
11 period ...
12 Q. Other than what you testified to today, some of the conversations
13 you overheard being brought to the line, were you aware at the time that
14 you were being held prisoner, or indeed, have you been made aware after
15 you were released of any efforts to have you exchanged other than what
16 you've already testified about, sir?
17 A. Of course, efforts were being made by my family and by my command
18 in Modrica. After all, we had a document in which my commander was
19 calling for my being exchanged. I'm only aware of these efforts, no
21 Q. And I believe you specifically referred to -- or at least the
22 document that you were shown referred to the commission for exchange of
23 POWs, correct, sir?
24 A. Yes, the commission is referred to in the document. During the
25 war there were, as a rule, commissions for exchanges of POWs.
1 Q. May we have 65 ter 3847 on e-court, and I just have a couple more
2 questions, just two more documents to show you, sir, and a couple of
4 Now, sir, we don't have an English translation of this document,
5 so I'm just going to ask you to take a moment and have a look at it.
6 Take your time.
7 A. Yes, my first and family names are mentioned in this document.
8 The command of the Drina Corps is requesting from the commission for
9 exchange to plan a meeting of some sort in the Tuzla district, and I can
10 see here Milan Tanjic or Tanic whom I also mentioned in one of my
11 statements. However, he was not captured at the time. He was captured
12 on the 11th of November, 1995, just as it says in here.
13 Q. Okay.
14 A. But that's not the same person.
15 Q. Very well, sir. If we look at the date of this, it's the 27th of
16 December, 1995, and as you said, it's from the command of the Drina
17 Corps, specifically the security organ, and it's addressed to the General
18 Staff of the VRS, the security organ there.
19 Now, I note that in paragraph 1 where it refers to you, sir,
20 there's a reference to the 15th of July. I think we can agree that if
21 that's a reference to the date of your capture, that's off by a day. Can
22 we agree on that?
23 A. Well, we can say that the difference is only just one day, but as
24 for Tanic or Tesic, there were two men, so the 11th of November would not
25 be that.
1 Q. And as you said, this refers to a planned meeting of the
2 respective POW commissions, and that meeting, as we can see on that very
3 first line of the document, was scheduled for the 28th of December. Is
4 that correct based on what you see here in the document, sir?
5 A. It's possible that the meeting was planned for the 28th of
6 December. I was captured on the 14th of July, so that is four and a half
7 months after that.
8 Q. No question about that, sir. If we could just scroll down a
9 little bit into the document. If we look at -- we see the first three
10 prisoners that are referred to, and then there's another set of
11 prisoners. Three Muslims are identified there; is that correct?
12 A. Yes, that's what it says here.
13 Q. And we can see that the signatory on this document is Colonel
14 Vujadin Popovic. Do you know who that is, sir?
15 A. No, I don't.
16 Q. And if you look at those last two paragraphs before the signature
17 line, sir, he is asking the Main Staff for their -- or for its
18 authorisation and opinion regarding this proposed exchange, this three
19 people for three people; is that correct?
20 A. Yes, that's what it says here.
21 Q. Okay. If we may have 65 ter 3848, please. And again, sir, we do
22 not have an English translation of this document. I just ask you to take
23 a moment to have a look at it, read it over, and take your time, and let
24 us know when you're ready to move down the document.
25 A. I've read it.
1 Q. And if we could just scroll down for the rest of the document,
3 A. I've read this as well.
4 Q. Okay, sir. If we could just go back, scroll up to the top of the
5 document, and I just have a couple of questions for you.
6 This document is an information reporter -- or a report
7 concerning the work of the RS commission for exchange of POWs. Can we
8 agree on that, sir?
9 A. That's what it says here.
10 Q. And if we look at the very first line, it refers to a meeting or
11 negotiations with the Muslim side on the 28th of December; is that
13 A. Yes, that's what it says here.
14 Q. And again, this document refers to yourself and two other Serb
15 prisoners, Mr. Vukotic and Mr. Tanjic. We can see that in the third
16 paragraph; correct?
17 A. My name is mentioned here, yes. Also, the name of Bozo Vukovic
18 and Milomir Tanjic, so we can note that there are these mistakes in the
19 names appearing constantly.
20 Q. And if we could scroll down just a little bit more, sir. Do you
21 see the paragraph that begins with the words -- it looks like "Ponovo su
22 trazili." Sorry for my pronunciation.
23 A. Yes, I see that passage. They were asking again for additional
24 information about the missing from Srebrenica.
25 Q. Okay. And when you say "they," who are you referring to? Or
1 what does the -- what does that paragraph say? If you could just --
2 actually, if you could just read that paragraph out into the record, that
3 would be helpful.
4 A. I can read it again, but I really don't know who drafted this
5 report. I can read it again. They asked for additional information
6 about the missing from Srebrenica. This time, again, just like the times
7 before, we let them know that the civilian population was evacuated in an
8 organised way to Kladanj and that the fighter forces crossed into Tuzla
9 through the corridor, which they are well aware of, and those who were
10 captured have been deported to the collection centre in Batkovici and
12 Q. Now, my question, sir, is at any time while you were being held
13 by the Muslims, or again, indeed, after your release, did you ever become
14 aware that the fate of the Muslim men and boys from Srebrenica became an
15 obstacle to prisoner exchange negotiations between the two sides, that
16 is, because the VRS would not account for the names of those individuals
17 captured after the fall of Srebrenica? That became an obstacle to the
18 exchange negotiations? Did you ever hear that, sir?
19 A. I did not hear that, and I disagree with that. And if I can say
20 something, a couple of words about this. I spent seven months in a
21 solitary confinement cell and was not in a position to know anything
22 about anything, especially anything regarding preparations for my
23 exchange. From the point in time when I was registered by the
24 International Committee of the Red Cross, which was in February 1996, I
25 personally spoke with Mr. Mihail Steiner, and he personally told me that
1 the Serbian side did respect their side and released all the prisoners in
2 all the camps in Republika Srpska and that the Muslims were not holding
3 to their side of the bargain, so we were all being held where we were,
4 and that there were more than 120 of us.
5 Q. And, sir, my last question is, you told us that your brother had
6 - I believe it was your brother - had in fact encountered Mr. Tesic later
7 on and that he in fact had been released. Can you confirm - and I think
8 this is what you said in your statement - that Mr. Tesic was in fact
9 released, he told your brother that he had been beaten or abused, but
10 then he was subsequently released? Do you stand by that?
11 A. Yes, I do stand by that. I stated that and it's true, that my
12 brother was in Zvornik and that he found that gentleman, Mr. Tesic. The
13 only thing that could possibly be is that there were two men; one of them
14 was Tanjic, the other one was Tesic, so we could have had something
16 Q. It's not clear to me, sir. You just said "so we could have had
17 something there." At least that's how it was translated. What do you
18 mean by that?
19 A. Yes. I paused and didn't complete my sentence. Perhaps the last
20 and first names were mixed up because in one of the documents you showed
21 me Tanic. I know this Tanic. He was in Tuzla in prison, but this is a
22 man who was actually captured -- actually, he crossed the line himself
23 when the Dayton Accord was signed in November 1995.
24 Q. Okay, sir. Well, just so there's no confusion on the record, if
25 we could have 4D 00553 one more time, and let me just show you your
1 statement and see if that helps us sort out whether we're talking about
2 Tanic or Tesic.
3 And we'll be looking at page 5 of the original, please. And if
4 we look at the first paragraph there, do you see where it refers to Mile
6 A. Yes, Mile Tesic is referred to here.
7 Q. And just so it's clear on the record, could you just read that
8 passage, the rest of that paragraph into the record, just so we know who
9 we're talking about and what we're talking about. If you would just read
10 it out loud, sir.
11 A. After taking information, I was ordered to turn and face the
12 wall, and then they brought in a person who introduced himself as Mile
13 Tesic from an area around Zvornik who was captured during the
14 breakthrough. They beat him because they didn't believe that he was a
15 cook in his unit. His head was injured, and blood was pouring down his
16 face. After that, Tesic and I had our eyes bound, and that's how we were
17 brought out of the shack to some garage where they removed our blinds.
18 Should I read more?
19 Q. Sure.
20 A. Some officers came. I assume that Semso Muminovic was one of
21 them. He is the one who introduced himself over the radio as Zukof. He
22 negotiated with some from the VRS via radio, and he agreed with them that
23 he would release Tesic immediately and then when he reached the VRS
24 lines, that he would then release me too. After ten minutes, Tesic was
25 taken from the garage, and I didn't see him anymore.
1 I note that about a month or so later, my brother found Tesic in
2 Zvornik, and he told him, Tesic, that he had seen me and that I was
3 alive. And for himself, he said that after he was taken out from the
4 garage, the Muslims kept him tied up all night around a tree on the line
5 and then -- beaten, abused him. And then the following day they handed
6 him over to the Serbian side.
7 Q. Okay, sir. So having read that, is there any doubt in your mind
8 that Mr. Tesic was in fact released and that's who we're both talking
10 A. As for Mr. Tesic's release, this is something that I didn't see.
11 I saw that he was taken from the garage. As for information that he was
12 in Zvornik and that my brother talked with him, this information I
13 received from my brother once I was exchanged. I can thus confirm what I
14 saw, and that is that Mr. Tesic was in that shack with me, that he was
15 taken from the garage, and about the rest, this is something that I
16 didn't see for myself. I heard about it.
17 MR. THAYER: Thank you, sir. I have no further questions.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honours. I'd just like to inform
20 the Trial Chamber that two documents shown to the witness during the
21 course of his cross-examination or in course of the cross-examination of
22 the Prosecution has never been disclosed to the Defence until this
23 cross-examination. Thank you.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Thank you, Mr. Zivanovic. Do you wish to
25 comment, Mr. Thayer?
1 MR. THAYER: Other than confirm that that's true, Mr. President,
2 I have no further comment.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Anyway, we'll have a break now of 20 minutes again,
4 and we start with the next witness. Of course, I will ask you if there's
5 a re-examination. Will there be a re-examination?
6 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honours, I don't believe so, but I'll have
7 this break. I will use this break for further consultations.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. I would have imagined so, but anyway.
9 20 minutes.
10 --- Recess taken at 12.20 p.m.
11 --- On resuming at 12.47 p.m.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: So is there re-examination, Mr. Lazarevic?
13 MR. LAZAREVIC: No, Your Honours. There will be no --
14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you. Documents? I take it --
15 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes, Your Honours. We have just two documents to
16 tender. One is 4D552. The other is 4D616. It's a video, material, and
17 we will submit transcript of this video material.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Later.
19 MR. LAZAREVIC: As soon as practicable.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. Any objection?
21 MR. THAYER: None, Mr. President.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I take it there are no other documents
23 from any of the other Defence teams. Do you have documents that you wish
24 to tender, Mr. Thayer?
25 MR. THAYER: Just two, Mr. President. 65 ter 3847 and 3848, the
1 two prisoner exchange documents shown to the witness.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Any objection? Mr. Lazarevic?
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: No objections, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
5 MR. THAYER: And we've submitted those for translation,
6 Mr. President.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. But in the meantime they will be marked for
8 identification, following which -- following pending translation thereof.
9 Once that is ready, they will be fully admitted.
10 So the next witness. Yes.
11 MR. GOSNELL: Mr. President, can I just take care of a couple of
12 housekeeping matters in respect of the previous two witnesses.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. By all means.
14 MR. GOSNELL: You had asked us to take a position on P210.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. You have made a filing.
16 MR. GOSNELL: Exactly. I wanted to advise the Chamber that we
17 had made a filing in respect of that document and one other document, and
18 we are objecting to that. And while I'm on my feet, if I could take care
19 of one other matter in relation to 4D605, which was a document used with
20 Mr. Trisic, and we wish to advise the Chamber that -- of the page numbers
21 of the B/C/S range that are involved in the admission of that document.
22 It's pages 6 and 7 in e-court, and the ERN range is 4D 060420 to 0421.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you.
24 MR. GOSNELL: Thank you, Mr. President.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. We'll come some other time on the
1 Borovcanin Defence team filing of today regarding those documents which
2 you sought to tender with Simic's testimony. We'll discuss them in due
4 [The witness entered court]
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon, to you, Mr. Neskovic.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: You are about to start giving evidence, having been
8 summoned as a witness by the Borovcanin Defence team. Before you do so,
9 you are required to make a solemn declaration that you will be testifying
10 the truth. Please go ahead, read out the text that you have been handed,
11 and that will be your solemn commitment with us.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
13 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you, Mr. Neskovic. Please make
15 yourself comfortable.
16 Mr. Neskovic, we are aware that you have asked that the sessions
17 will be of a shorter duration. Of course we will take that into
18 consideration, and we'll make sure that they do not exceed one hour. On
19 the other hand, I also wish to draw your attention to the following, that
20 if at any time you also need a break because you are not feeling
21 comfortable and you need to stop the sitting, please let us know and we
22 will do so immediately. All right.
23 Mr. Lazarevic -- today we are only sitting for about less than an
24 hour now, for about 50 minutes, so the question does not arise. We will
25 continue tomorrow in the afternoon. Mr. Lazarevic is going to ask you a
1 few questions.
2 WITNESS: DRAGAN NESKOVIC
3 [Witness answered through interpreter]
4 Examination by Mr. Lazarevic:
5 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Neskovic.
6 A. Good afternoon.
7 Q. We've already had the opportunity to meet, but for the purposes
8 of the transcript, I'm going to introduce myself. I'm Aleksandar
9 Lazarevic, and together with my colleagues I am representing Mr. Ljubomir
10 Borovcanin in the proceedings before this Tribunal.
11 Before I begin to put questions to you, I would just like to warn
12 you that because we both speak the same language, you can just wait a
13 little bit. You can look at the screen in front of you where the
14 transcript is being typed, and if you can just wait in order to avoid
15 overlapping answers and questions and for the transcript to be clear. So
16 I hope you understood this so-called warning.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Can you please first tell me your first -- first and last name,
19 your full first and last name?
20 A. I'm Dragan Neskovic, son of Nedeljko. My mother's name is
21 Ilinka. Born on the 8th of February, 1951, in the village of Pobrodje
22 [phoen], Bratunac municipality.
23 Q. Very well. Can you please tell me briefly about your education,
24 where you completed it, which schools you graduated from, and when this
1 A. I completed elementary school, 8-year elementary school. I
2 completed it in Bratunac. After that, I went for further education for
3 four years, completed that in Bratunac. This is high school. After
4 that, in 1970 I served my military term of duty, which I served in
5 Kraljevo, which is now in Serbia
6 was employed as a freight truck driver. I worked very briefly there, and
7 then I applied for a vacancy at the militia at that time. Now it's the
8 police at the state level. I was accepted in the summer of 1972. In the
9 summer of that same year, I went for expert training as a policeman in
10 Makarska, which is currently in Croatia
11 1973. I continued to work at the general police station. After that, I
12 went to Sarajevo
13 and regulation of traffic and also for onsite investigations of
15 Later in 1977, I went for another exam as an instructor driver,
16 where besides my regular tasks I worked in the committee -- or commission
17 for driving tests. I continued to do my job in the traffic police along
18 with this other job until 1987 or 1988 when I was transferred by my
19 superiors to the station to work in the office as the shift leader, duty
20 shift leader, and I worked on the materiel and technical means of the
21 station where my assignment was to provide office supplies, the carpool
22 with car parts, and also the police with footwear, uniforms, and so on
23 and so forth.
24 Q. All right. Thank you very much for this very detailed answer. I
25 would just like to put a couple of short questions to you about this.
1 Where did you live until the beginning of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina,
2 and which jobs were you performing then in 1995?
3 A. First, I lived with my parents in the village, which was about 2
4 and a half kilometres away from the place where I worked. Five or six
5 years into my career, I got a flat and I moved to the flat in Bratunac,
6 and that's where I spent my entire career in the police until the moment
7 when I was pensioned off in 1996.
8 Q. It arises from your answer that in 1995 you performed the same
9 tasks as you did prior to that, which means you worked at the public
10 security station in Bratunac; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, it is.
12 Q. You've already told us that in 1996 you were pensioned off. In
13 the meantime, have you taken an active position since then? What do you
14 live on?
15 A. Since then, I have lived solely on my pension, on my retirement.
16 I don't have any additional jobs.
17 Q. Do you know Mr. Ljubomir Borovcanin at all?
18 A. Yes, I do.
19 Q. Since when have you known him?
20 A. I've known him since his arrival in Bratunac in 1992, sometime in
21 the summer of that year, but I wouldn't be able to give you the exact
22 month. I believe it was either July or August, possibly July.
23 Q. Very well. In this regard, I would like us to look at a document
24 that might jog your memory with regard to the time when Mr. Borovcanin
25 arrived in Bratunac. Can we please see 4D621.
1 [In English] Maybe we can use the hard copy of this document.
2 I think that this document is in the e-court. I was just
3 informed about this. Okay.
4 [Interpretation] Mr. Neskovic, the document on the right-hand
5 side in a language that we understand, please look at it. In the
6 heading, you can see that this was sent by the Minister of the Interior,
8 list of employees who during the month of June 1992 performed duties in
9 this police station and who were paid salary advance for that month,
10 which was June 1992.
11 Under number 1, can you see the name of Mr. Ljubomir Borovcanin,
12 commander, and the amount of the advance salary?
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 Q. Doesn't it arise obviously from this document which refers to the
15 month of July that at the time Mr. Ljubomir Borovcanin worked in Kladanj
16 as the commander of the police station there --
17 A. -- judging by this piece of paper --
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- I would say yes.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: Sorry. Before he answers it, we heard the month
22 of July. I don't --
23 MR. LAZAREVIC: It's June, it's June. It says June.
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm just -- translation.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: In the transcript we have July, and that's what we
1 heard, too, so we're talking of June.
2 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes. I think it's obvious from the document
3 itself it refers to June 1992.
4 Q. [Interpretation] Very well. We will no longer need this
5 document. To your best recollection, up to when did Mr. Borovcanin stay
6 in Bratunac, in the public security station in Bratunac, that is?
7 A. I believe that he stayed until the beginning of 1994, but again,
8 I can't remember the month when he left. The memory fails me. I don't
9 know whether it was in February or March. I'm not sure.
10 Q. And throughout the time when he was in Bratunac, was Mr.
11 Borovcanin an employee of the public security station, or did he have any
12 other jobs that you would be aware of?
13 A. From the moment he arrived and joined the station until his
14 departure, he was the commander of that station and nothing else.
15 Q. Maybe the following question is not necessary, but let's put it
16 anyway. During his stay in Bratunac, was he ever appointed the chief of
17 the public security station?
18 A. As far as I know, and I know it personally, he wasn't. I'm sure
19 of that.
20 Q. Could you now please tell me whether you know, what position was
21 Mr. Borovcanin transferred to when he left the position of the commander
22 of the public security station in Bratunac?
23 A. He went to the brigade, and I don't know what position he was
24 appointed to. I know it was a high position, but I don't know what his
25 tasks were.
1 Q. What do you know about the relationship between Mr. Borovcanin
2 and the other members of the public security station in Bratunac?
3 A. In my view, the gentleman was a true professional. He had a very
4 fair relationship with the employees of his police station.
5 Q. And one more question about the same topic. When Mr. Borovcanin
6 was in Bratunac, did he belong to a political party? Did he appear on
7 behalf of a political party?
8 A. Not that I could notice either from his behaviour or in his
9 social contacts with the citizens.
10 THE INTERPRETER: Could all the microphones in the courtroom be
11 turned off. Thank you.
12 MR. LAZAREVIC:
13 Q. [Interpretation] I would like us to move on to year 1995. You've
14 already told us about the tasks that you performed in 1995. Did anything
15 change in July 1995? Were you still performing the same jobs as you did
16 prior to that?
17 A. Until the last day, until the moment I was pensioned off, I
18 worked in the same job and I performed the same tasks. Nothing changed
20 MR. LAZAREVIC: I was advised that there was some note from the
21 interpreters that the microphones in the courtroom should be turned off.
22 Does this apply ...
23 JUDGE AGIUS: No, no, no. It does not apply to you. It applies
24 to others.
25 MR. LAZAREVIC: Thank you.
1 Q. [Interpretation] When it comes to your tasks and duties, what
2 were those concretely? What did you do at the police station in Bratunac
3 in 1995? You've already given us some general outlines, but could you
4 provide us with some more detail? What specific tasks did you perform?
5 A. My first task was to communicate with the security services
6 centre and to ensure the parts and equipment for the vehicles, footwear,
7 clothes, forms, papers and all the other office supplies, and as needed
8 if any of the commanders were to travel, I served as the driver. And I
9 also helped the auxiliary services that only employed one person, and as
10 a rule there should have been two people, a duty officer and his
11 assistants, so I would fill that position as well. In practical terms, I
12 spent the whole days at the station from dawn to dusk performing those
14 Q. Are we talking about regular police duties here?
15 A. I had a decision to work as a policeman in charge of materiel and
16 technical equipment and each public security -- each police station that
17 belonged to my security services centre had such an employee.
18 Q. What kind of uniform did you wear in July 1995?
19 A. I personally wore a blue camouflage police uniform.
20 Q. What about the other members of the police station in Bratunac?
21 Did they all wear the same type of uniform?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And let me ask you this: When you performed your regular police
24 duties, did you carry weapons?
25 A. I had been issued with a long-barrel rifle and a pistol, but I
1 did not carry the long rifle to work, but I did carry a pistol from work
2 to home because I personally believe that a policeman [Realtime
3 transcript read in error, "person"] looked more serious in preventing
4 crime when he wears weapons rather than only a uniform.
5 MR. LAZAREVIC: We have one small [microphone not activated] for
6 the transcript on page 57. It's line 17 -- or 16, I think. The witness
7 said "I personally believe that" -- here it says "person," and it should
8 read "police officer."
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Lazarevic. Let's proceed.
10 MR. LAZAREVIC:
11 Q. [Interpretation] At the time in July 1995, who was the commander
12 of the police station in Bratunac?
13 A. The commander of the police station was Slavoljub Mladjenovic.
14 Q. And who was the chief of the public security station?
15 A. Miodrag Josipovic.
16 Q. In your concrete case, who was your superior in the public
17 security station in Bratunac? Who was above you? Who had the right to
18 give you orders?
19 A. It was the commander of the police station. He was the one who
20 gave me all the orders that I was supposed to carry out.
21 Q. And who was above him, above the commander?
22 A. Above the commander of the station there was the chief of the
23 police station.
24 Q. Did the public security station in Bratunac belong to a security
25 services centre?
1 A. At the time, the Zvornik centre had just been established and we
2 were subordinated to it.
3 Q. I apologise. Both my question and your answer call for some
4 clarification. It turns out from your answer that it had just been
5 established. Is that true?
6 A. No, it hadn't just been established. At the time, we belonged to
7 the centre Zvornik. It stopped functioning after that. At the time when
8 we were working in Bratunac, we were subordinated to the security
9 services centre in Zvornik which existed at the time.
10 Q. I believe that the record is now quite clear.
11 Who was the chief of the security services centre in July 1995.
12 A. Dragomir Vasic was the chief of the security services centre.
13 Q. I have just a couple of more questions with this regard. In July
14 1995, did you have a rank, a police rank?
15 A. No. At the time, we just had the so-called functional markings.
16 Q. If I were to ask you whether anybody in the public security
17 station in Bratunac might have had a rank of, for example, police
18 lieutenant, would that be possible?
19 A. I'm sure that nobody had a rank. It was not possible for just
20 one person to have a rank and for the others not to have them. I'm sure
21 that nobody had a rank.
22 Q. The next thing I would like to ask you is whether in the public
23 security station in Bratunac you had a depot or storage for the supplies?
24 A. Yes, we did.
25 Q. Where was it? Where was the storage?
1 A. The storage was physically tied to the building of the police
2 station. The entrance to it - I apologise - was from the police station
3 into the perimeter and from there into the storage. It was a small
4 building because we did not need a bigger space. We did not have that
5 many staff. We had very little supplies, a few ammunition, clothing,
6 papers. Whatever we had could easily fit into a passenger vehicle.
7 Q. You have already told us in very practical terms what the storage
8 held. Were you in charge of filling up the storage and issuing things
9 from it?
10 A. Yes, I was personally in charge of that. I had the keys. Nobody
11 could enter the storage without me or in my absence.
12 Q. Where did your supplies come from? Where did the materiel and
13 technical supplies for your public security station come from?
14 A. I would make a list of supplies that I needed based on the needs
15 of my colleagues, and then I would send it to the centre in Zvornik that
16 would inform me about the time when I could pick up the supplies that I
17 requested. I would personally go to Zvornik, and I would take over the
18 supplies and bring them to my police station.
19 Q. Very well. I want to put a few questions to you about the PJP.
20 This Chamber has already had the opportunity to hear a lot of evidence
21 and testimony relating to the PJP. What I wanted to go over with you is
22 this: The public security station, was it used to replenish the PJP in
23 the security centre in Zvornik?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And when the policemen from your public security station would be
1 sent to the PJP, what would they take with them? What would you issue
3 A. It was my duty on the basis of their requests to me to provide
4 them with combat kits or to replenish the ammunition there, to provide
5 meals for them when they went out in the field. As for where they went,
6 that is something that I did not know, and I had no further obligations
7 towards them.
8 Q. All right. If I understood your answer correctly, you would
9 issue all that they needed to replenish their combat kits, and after that
10 when they would go to the PJP units you didn't have any obligations
11 towards them later in terms of logistics?
12 A. Yes, that is correct.
13 MR. McCLOSKEY: That's leading, and it added material that he
14 didn't say, so I object.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: So, Mr. Lazarevic, do you wish to comment?
16 MR. LAZAREVIC: I believe -- yes, my colleague is right. It was
17 in a way leading, but it was his previous answer that he said -- maybe I
18 can requote it. "As for where they went, that is something that I didn't
19 know, and I had no further obligations towards them." That's basically
20 what the witness said.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: But you are explaining --
22 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: -- you are giving an explanation in your question,
24 so Mr. McCloskey is perfectly right.
25 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes, I --
1 JUDGE AGIUS: So I suggest you rephrase your question if it is
2 necessary at all --
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes. I don't think --
4 JUDGE AGIUS: -- because he has already stated that he --
5 according to him, he had no obligation.
6 MR. LAZAREVIC: I don't think it needs any further clarification.
7 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Neskovic, are you aware that in 1995 there
8 were police forces staffs? Do you know if any such staff existed in the
10 A. Yes. There was a staff in Zvornik that monitored the situation -
11 let me put it that way - in that sector.
12 Q. Can you tell me who was at the head of the staff?
13 A. Dragomir Vasic was the superior officer, the chief of the centre.
14 Q. And that staff that we talked about, did it function at any point
15 also from the public security station in Bratunac?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And can you please tell me approximately when the staff
18 transferred from Zvornik to the public security station? Of course to
19 the extent that you can recall that. You don't have to give me specific
20 dates or hours.
21 A. I cannot remember the date or the time, but I know that sometime
22 before the fall of Srebrenica the staff was in the Bratunac police
23 station in the office of the chief Josipovic.
24 Q. Very well. I'm not going to go into this any more. I think that
25 you told us enough about what you know about the staff.
1 What I want to ask you now is if at any point in time you found
2 out that the Army of Republika Srpska had entered Srebrenica? And if you
3 did, can you recall when you learned this, from whom, how, in which way?
4 A. I think that it was the 11th. That was the date when I set out
5 towards the evening because usually I stay an hour or more later than the
6 scheduled time. So on the road from the police station to my apartment,
7 there were a couple of people. There was the odd soldier there as well.
8 They said that the army of Republika Srpska had entered Srebrenica, which
9 I didn't comment. I didn't simply believe it. I didn't believe that
10 that was that. I simply went home to rest because those days were quite
11 tiring, and that evening I didn't have any contacts with anybody until I
12 arrived at the station.
13 Q. All right. Very well. We will go back to the dates.
14 Now, I just want to put some questions to you about the
15 functioning of the telephone lines in Bratunac at that time. Do you
16 remember in the period before the Army of Republika Srpska entered
17 Srebrenica and some days after that if the telephone lines were operating
18 in Bratunac?
19 A. Are you talking about the town?
20 Q. Yes. For a start, please tell us how they functioned -- the
21 telephone traffic functioned in Bratunac during those days?
22 A. It didn't function at all. The private numbers were completely
23 switched off from the network. The institution where I worked only had
24 one out line, which was in the chief's office. Nobody could use it, only
25 the chief personally. The other calls that we needed to make, we would
1 go to our communication centre at the station to switch us to the brigade
2 so that the brigade could connect us with whoever we needed to talk to.
3 Q. I would now like to look at a document about the topic we just
4 mentioned, and that is P3817.
5 Mr. Neskovic, excuse me. I can see that you are having
6 difficulty. If you are unable to read the document, please tell me. Are
7 you able to read the document?
8 A. Yes, yes.
9 Q. Very well. We can see this is a document of the 5th of July,
10 1995, command of the 1st Bratunac Light Infantry Brigade sent to the
11 manager of the PTT Bratunac. The subject is disconnect -- a request to
12 disconnect telephones. And we can see in the body of the document that
13 as of the 5th of July, 1995, at 1200 noon until further, switch off, all
14 users of PTT services from the PTT system and private telephones should
15 be completely disconnected, also in the local area, and then we see which
16 lines should not be disconnected, and you can look at the fourth line
17 where it says NMUP. Is this the chief of the public security station?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And this telephone, 881-104, are you familiar with this telephone
20 number? Was it actually the chief's telephone number?
21 A. That number is being used today. It's just that the first number
22 is 410-104 because the first three numbers have been replaced for all
23 telephone users in the town.
24 Q. Okay. Well, you've already answered the question about who would
25 have been using that phone. Let's now move to the events, and let's
1 start from the 10th of July, 1995. The first question that I would like
2 to put to you is whether records were kept about the daily activities of
3 the station members at the station. Is this correct?
4 A. Yes. Each worker had their own list, attendance list where the
5 time he came to work and he left work would be recorded, as well as the
6 number of hours spent at work.
7 Q. All right. Very well. Now let us look at 4D620. This is the
8 record of attendance and activities of the Bratunac public security
9 station members for June, July and August of 1995. When you were being
10 proofed for your testimony, you had the opportunity to see the document.
11 I would now like us to look at page 24 in B/C/S.
12 Very well. If we can just zoom in to the top part of the
13 document so that the witness doesn't need to bend down to look at the
14 task. The document -- let us look at the document now. We have the
15 number in the first column. The second column is the function. The
16 third column is the last name, father's initial, and first name. The
17 next column is the service or changes from the previous month. Then in
18 the next column we have date, kind of job or changes, and number of
19 official hours. And then we see in the upper left-hand corner of the
20 document that it states July 1995.
21 First, I would like to ask you if this is the attendance record
22 or ledger that we referred to earlier?
23 A. Yes, it is.
24 Q. Let us now look at number 7 where we evidently see your name.
25 Can we look at the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and so on and so
1 forth up to 15. What do these numbers refer to?
2 A. To days, from the 1st to the 15th of the month.
3 Q. Very well. Now, let's look at 10th of July. Actually, let's
4 look at the 9th of July, which has been crossed out, and there is a
5 letter "S" in the Cyrillic here. What does that mean?
6 A. That I was off, that I didn't have any activities that day.
7 Q. All right. Very well. Now, let us look at the next entry. This
8 is the entry for the 11th of July, 1995. Can you please tell me what it
9 says there?
10 A. "SP" stands for police station or police station tasks. The time
11 is from 700 hours to 1700 hours, and then underneath that, the figure
12 entered is 10, indicating ten work hours.
13 Q. And let me just ask you this: Did you always stay at the station
14 precisely that amount of hours that is entered here, or did you sometimes
15 stay more or less? Is this absolutely reliable information?
16 A. It's correct that I spent at least that much time on that day at
17 the police station. Sometimes, most of the time, I would stay at least
18 an hour or two longer. I have to be punctual in reporting to work, and
19 the time I left was something that depended on others, not on me. I
20 stayed for as long as there was work.
21 Q. Does that mean that you were physically at the station, or does
22 it mean that in this time interval from 7 to 1700 hours you would leave
23 the station and come back?
24 A. Well, it would happen that I would leave the station, but if I
25 did that it would be for a short period of time so that at any time
1 people who were there on duty could call me for urgent interventions if
2 required. But I didn't stay long outside the building, although I was
3 able to leave quite often if I had any need to do that. I talked about
4 the transport pool. I'm not able to service and maintain the vehicles
5 because of the time conditions within the stations. I mean, sometimes I
6 would do it myself, but if the weather conditions were unfavourable, I
7 would have to go to town and to service the vehicle and then return to
8 the building.
9 Q. All right. I would now like to ask you about the 11th of July,
10 1995. That date, was that the date that you met Mr. Borovcanin?
11 A. Yes.
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading. I know the answer is out,
13 but if we could -- I've let several of these go, and I don't know why
14 we're doing this.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Lazarevic.
16 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Let me just take a look at the translation. No,
17 that's not what I said. Was that the date that you met Mr. Borovcanin
18 asking whether he met Mr. Borovcanin on that day, that was my question.
19 I don't think it was properly translated. Did he meet Mr. Borovcanin on
20 that day.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't read it much differently in the transcript.
22 Let's proceed anyway, and if you want to object, Mr. McCloskey, as we go
23 along, please try to do it in a very timely manner because questions are
24 short, answers are quick, and sometimes by the time we notice you are
25 standing, it's -- the answer is already there. Mr. Lazarevic.
1 MR. LAZAREVIC:
2 Q. [Interpretation] Very well. Can you tell us something about the
3 11th of July, if you remember, and can you describe to us how this
4 encounter came about?
5 A. The office where I was working --
6 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading. What encounter? We have not
7 heard of any encounter. I mean, I hate to do this, but...
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Lazarevic.
9 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honours, I really have problem. Now we
10 will, of course, come to this. The Prosecution is informed in a proper
11 way. We filed the proofing note with this witness that -- but I really
12 don't know how to put it.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: But you are now mentioning specifically an
14 encounter, and that's what the objection is about.
15 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes, but the witness already said that he met Mr.
16 Borovcanin. It's on page 66, line 20.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: He didn't. That's what the lawyer said, and the
19 proper question is, Did you see him? When did you see him. You know, he
20 knows how to do this. Giving the answers to the witness and then asking
21 for detail, you know, on these topics is inappropriate.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. What you are referring to, Mr. Lazarevic, is
23 precisely the question and the answer that were objected to. I'm sure
24 you know how to go around this. You just ask the witness whether he ever
25 met Mr. Borovcanin around this period of time, possibly when, if he can
1 remember, and we proceed from there.
2 MR. LAZAREVIC: I will do this way, sir.
3 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Neskovic, did you have an opportunity in
4 that period to meet Mr. Borovcanin?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Can you remember when and where you met Mr. Borovcanin? Can you
7 recall the date or the day?
8 A. My workplace is on the first floor where a part of other
9 personnel is and the chief. My office is at the other end of the hall.
10 Since this was summer, the door was usually open. I heard Mr.
11 Borovcanin's voice as he was coming up the stairs. I came out of my
12 office at least to say hello to him. This was on the stairs. I asked
13 him, Can we drink coffee together? He told me he had to see the chief
14 Josipovic urgently and that he was going to Pribicevac and if there was
15 an opportunity or time we would have coffee together when he came back,
16 and that was that. That was the time that I saw him. I didn't see him
17 after that.
18 Q. Can you please tell us which day this was so that we could have a
19 clear transcript?
20 A. That was the 11th. I cannot specify the time. I think it was
21 approximately - but don't hold me to it - in some early afternoon hours,
22 and it was after 12, so it was between 1200 and 1400 hours to be more
24 Q. All right. And other than this brief exchange that you had with
25 Mr. Borovcanin, did you see him any time later that day?
1 A. No. After my work hours expired, I went home as usual, and then
2 as usual I did not come back to the police station until the following
4 MR. LAZAREVIC: We are going to another topic. Maybe it would be
5 convenient to ...
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Mr. Neskovic, we are going to stop here for
7 today. We will continue tomorrow as I explained to you earlier. In the
8 meantime, between now and when you resume your testimony tomorrow, you
9 are not to communicate with anyone on the subject matter of what you are
10 testifying here.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. One moment. Some housekeeping matters.
13 The witness can leave.
14 [The witness stands down]
15 JUDGE AGIUS: About next week. Now, there have been some
16 developments, and we were asked by the Appeals Chamber if we could
17 possibly not sit on the 3rd so that they can have a hearing in a
18 particular appeal, and we have agreed to that. So there will not be a
19 sitting next week on the 3rd.
20 But on the 4th, there will be an extended sitting, which I
21 suppose you are already aware of. In addition, to make up for the
22 sitting that we are missing on Tuesday, on the 6th -- on the 3rd, we will
23 have an extra sitting on the 7th when we were supposed not to sit.
24 That's Friday. On the 7th, we are going to sit on an extended sitting
25 basis. That's from 9.00 in the morning until about 4.30 in the
1 afternoon. On the 6th, we are not sitting as per previous communication.
2 All right.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE AGIUS: If there are problems, do please let us know, but
5 the idea -- even on Tuesday when we have the -- on the 3rd, the idea is
6 not to sit until 7.00 but to have the usual arrangement. We'll sit an
7 extended sitting, try to finish by 4.30 or 5.00 at maximum. Thank you.
8 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.45 p.m.,
9 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 28th day of
10 October, 2008, at 9.00 a.m.