1 Monday, 6 July 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The Accused Popovic not present]
5 [The witness takes the stand]
6 --- Upon commencing at 9.06 a.m.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning. Mr. Registrar, could you call the
8 case, please.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Thank you, and good morning, Your Honours. This
10 is case number IT-05-88-T, the Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic et al.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you.
12 For the record, accused Popovic is not present this morning. The
13 Chamber was duly notified about this in the course of last week, and a
14 waiver has been filed with the Registry. The other accused are present.
15 Prosecution today, it's Mr. McCloskey. Absentees from the
16 Defence teams, I notice Mr. Nikolic, Mr. Bourgon, Mr. Gosnell, I saw
17 Mr. Davis -- yes, he is here. Okay. So that's it.
18 I take it there are no preliminaries, so we can start with your
19 cross-examination, Mr. McCloskey.
20 Good morning to you, sir.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I hope you had a good weekend. We are proceeding
23 and concluding with your cross-examination this morning and then you are
24 free to go back home.
25 Mr. McCloskey.
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President, and good morning
3 WITNESS: SASA JOVANOVIC: [Resumed]
4 [Witness answered through interpretation]
5 Cross-examination by Mr. McCloskey:
6 Q. Good morning, Mr. Jovanovic.
7 A. Good morning.
8 Q. And my name is Peter McCloskey. I represent the Prosecution.
9 First thing, after having a chance to think about what you had said over
10 the weekend, is there anything you want to change from your direct
11 testimony, any mistakes you made or anything you want to change?
12 A. The only mistake could have been the sentence that General Gvero
13 uttered in conversation with General Mladic to the effect that the two
14 Serb towns had fallen but they were falling, they fell on the 28th, and
15 this sentence was uttered before that; but they had been in a process of
16 being lost for the six preceding months. So this is the only thing I
17 want to rectify so I'm not misunderstood.
18 Q. So you do recall saying twice to Mr. Krgovic that those two towns
19 had -- had fallen, past tense, and then Mr. Krgovic tried to remind you
20 and say "falling," and so you've had a chance to think about that and now
21 you want to go with what Mr. Krgovic said. That's the correct way,
22 "falling," and not "fell."
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Because you know that if General Gvero had said to General Mladic
25 on the 26th of July that that they had fallen, he couldn't have said it
1 on the 26th, he would have had to said that from Zepa or Han Pijesak area
2 after they had fallen, so it would have been on or after the 28th. So
3 you've now corrected that on the record, I take it?
4 A. That's correct.
5 Q. All right. Now, let's -- can you tell me, did you have a chance
6 to look at your flight log, your flight records? I think we all know
7 here that pilots and flight engineers are always judged and based on
8 their flight times, and those logs and those records are essential to be
9 kept, and that surely you're an active flight officer today as we've
10 learned. So surely you've had a chance to go over your flight logs
11 before testifying about those important flights of July 1995.
12 A. I did not go over them for one reason: The flight log and the
13 flight record of each member of the crew is maintained in a very precise
14 manner in peacetime. I and many of my colleagues were shabby in
15 maintaining our flight records, simply because it was impossible to enter
16 data after flights every day because flight records were maintained in
17 Banja Luka
18 recorded those on -- in notebooks on scraps of paper and then
19 subsequently they would be entered into logbooks. Almost 30 per cent of
20 my flights have not been recorded because I lost the notes, and I could
21 not reconstruct them from memory. Before coming here to testify, I have
22 not seen any records.
23 I recall that that period was special because we flew every day.
24 There were no breaks in our flight duty. We had 10 to 15 days of flying
25 every day without respite.
1 Q. Sir, you're aware that the Serbian government is cooperating with
2 this Tribunal and provides military documents frequently to us and that
3 we will ask for your flight records. So you may want to think about
4 that. We have seen records in this case of the simplest TAM-110 truck
5 keeping track of the fuel, let alone flight fuel. Certainly, sir, you've
6 had a chance to look at some flight record before coming here. It's a
7 serious question, and what you're doing is very serious.
8 A. I'm ready, in respect of all the documentation that I hold or my
9 state holds, to hand them over to you, and I'm sure I can prove that on
10 that date I was at Boksanica.
11 Q. Okay, how many helicopters, operational helicopters, did the VRS
12 have in July 1995 -- did the Main Staff have, not just the VRS but the
13 Main Staff?
14 A. At the Main Staff at Crna Rijeka there was only one helicopter,
15 and most of the time during the war there was only one helicopter. Are
16 you interested in the make or some technical data about it?
17 Q. Well, I think you told us it was a Gazelle, that's the make;
18 right? And what year was it manufactured?
19 A. The helicopter that I flew during that period, he had the
20 military markings 12882, which means the 800 series, and the helicopter
21 that I flew was manufactured immediately before the war. I saw the
22 documents, but I forgot it. So the 800 to 900 series were produced
23 towards the end of the 1980s at the Sokar [phoen] factory in Mostar.
24 Q. And how many other pilots, how many pilots were there that
25 actually could fly that helicopter? I'm not talking about flight
1 engineers now, I'm talking about pilots.
2 A. At Crna Rijeka you mean?
3 Q. Yes.
4 A. At Crna Rijeka, at that time, there were two pilots.
5 Q. And what were their names?
6 A. Major Dusan Maran, who flew together with me through most of the
7 war, and his substitute was major and later Lieutenant-General
8 Trivo Jokanovic.
9 Q. And who was with you on the 26th July flight that we've seen?
10 A. Major Dusan Maran.
11 Q. And besides yourself, how many other flight engineers were there?
12 A. At Crna Rijeka, at the Main Staff, none.
13 Q. And were you trained to be able to fly that helicopter if you'd
14 had to?
15 A. There is no training in airforce for me to be -- to enable me to
16 fly on my own, but Major Maran had an assistant to train me for -- to
17 able to fly on my own if in case he was hurt, so I was trained
18 unofficially to pilot the aircraft on my own.
19 Q. And the aircraft can be piloted from the left side of the -- the
20 aircraft if need be; correct?
21 A. Yes, it has double commands identical on the left-hand side and
22 the right-hand side. On the right-hand side seats, that's the pilot
23 seat, and on the left-hand side is the flight engineer seat, but the
24 commands are identical.
25 Q. And how many passengers can be taken if the first two seats are
1 filled by you and the pilot, how many can fit in the backseat?
2 A. Three passengers can sit at the back, a maximum of three
3 passengers, and there is some room for luggage; but as for passengers,
4 there could have been three of them.
5 Q. And you must have been aware of UN Resolution 781 that was
6 enacted in 1992?
7 A. Yes, I roughly know what it's all about. I don't know everything
8 that was written in it, but I remember the gist of it.
9 Q. Well, what was the gist of it as would have been known by people
10 that were -- were flying in RS air-space during the war?
11 A. As far as I can remember, that resolution concerned prohibition
12 of flights over the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina, concerning the
13 Republika Srpska Air Force. I'm not sure whether any other air forces
14 were banned, but we were, and that no-flight zone was respected in terms
15 of combat aircraft. Fighters and bombers did not fly. Helicopters did,
16 mainly transporting the wounded, military commanders, and politicians.
17 Q. Did that no-flight resolution affect the way you -- that plane --
18 excuse me, that helicopter was flown?
19 A. It affected in terms that we had to be mindful not to be shot
20 down by fighter planes. We did not know who was in charge of the
21 airspace of BH, but we had to be mindful not to be shot down, and this
22 meant the flight elevation, the route. Sometimes we would land when we
23 spotted a fighter plane and wait for it to disappear. Sometimes it
24 resulted in the wounded dying because we had to wait for the fighter
25 planes, and we were transporting such wounding to a hospital for surgery.
1 Q. We see you flying at the tree top levels when you were flying
2 General Mladic, that is because you were concerned about the no-flight
3 restrictions and being shot down by NATO?
4 A. What you saw was unsecurely high. We used to fly even lower.
5 But on that flight, we were not afraid of being shot down by NATO, but by
6 our own anti-aircraft defence, which was stationed around the area of
8 Q. Well, you lived in the barracks there at Crna Rijeka; correct?
9 A. Yes. That's correct.
10 Q. And you knew that a Muslim sabotage group had actually gotten
11 pretty close to the barracks in June 1995; correct?
12 A. Yes, relatively close.
13 Q. So you knew that those hills around Han Pijesak, Crna Rijeka,
14 Zepa, densely wooded mountains, had potential saboteurs, Muslim
15 saboteurs, in them armed with Zolja shoulder fire rockets, automatic
16 weapons; correct?
17 A. You mentioned the area of Zepa, but we never flew over the area
18 of Zepa. We flew around Han Pijesak, Crna Rijeka, Borik, up to
19 Boksanica. We did not fly over Zepa. There was this possibility of
20 saboteurs opening fire from the woods or different positions, but we had
21 an advantage in that we had mufflers on exhaust pipes of the engine, so
22 you could not hear the helicopter approaching, only when it was flying
23 away. So they had to be very trained to recognise and hear the
24 helicopter. We changed routes every day for security reasons. We knew
25 safe routes to approach Boksanica, and we used them.
1 Q. My point is that it was a very dangerous job. When that
2 helicopter went up, you were facing a grave threat with a very valuable
3 machine and cargo, potentially?
4 A. That's correct.
5 Q. Now in July, where you've said already that you remembered the
6 flights, and you especially remember the 26th of July, in July 1995, were
7 you and the pilot you've mentioned, sorry, I've forgot his name, what was
8 his name again, the last name?
9 A. Major Dusan Maran.
10 Q. So were you and Major Maran the only people that flew
11 General Mladic around in July 1995?
12 A. Yes. We were the only ones who transported him then.
13 Q. And who, besides General Mladic, did you transport in July 1995?
14 A. Well, July is a long month. Can you narrow it down? Do you mean
15 the incidents of the 26th of July?
16 Q. No, I just mean -- you've said you remembered the flights, so I'm
17 sure you've thought about July. What other Main Staff Generals, if any,
18 did you fly around in July; Tolimir, Gvero, Miletic, Milovanovic?
19 A. In July, in that period, we flew General Tolimir, General Krstic,
20 some people from the press centre, cameramen, interpreters. There were
21 only -- even journalists writing for Serb newspapers would come and
22 wanted to report and cover the story, and this is where we came in to fly
23 them. Generals Gvero and Milovanovic I did not transport. They did not
24 appear up there.
25 Q. Now, you must remember when General Mladic and others walked into
1 Srebrenica on the 11th of July, 1995. It was all over the Serb
2 television; correct?
3 A. I remember that period. We did not take part in that action with
4 our helicopter.
5 Q. Well, we have a -- a report of the Bratunac Brigade at
6 65 ter 237 - I don't want to spend the time to go to it - but it
7 indicates that General Mladic was in the area of the Bratunac Brigade
8 on -- on 10 July. Did you fly him there to that little airfield just
9 outside Bratunac on 10 July?
10 A. No, we did not transport him on the 10th of July because the
11 weather conditions around Crna Rijeka and Han Pijesak, that part of
12 Romanija, were not conducive to flying helicopter. Had the weather
13 conditions been different, we would have, but we did not takeoff because
14 it was not safe even for a short flight, let alone a long flight to
16 Q. How about on the 11th of July? General Mladic again is in the
17 Bratunac area on the 11th of July. We know it was safe for aircraft to
18 fly on the 11th because NATO bombed Srebrenica then. Did you take him on
19 the 11th?
20 A. Mr. Prosecutor, I could not now explain meteorology, which tells
21 to an ordinary man that in one town you can have ideal conditions, while
22 at the same time, in a nearby town, you can have the conditions that
23 prevent any flying. The Gazelle helicopter, which was produced in
25 all of its conditions, it simply is not equipped to fly under very
1 complex weather conditions.
2 So in a helicopter, for example, we did not have any de-icing
3 system, and if you fly into a cloud, you need that. We also did not have
4 any equipment for night flights. So it was very limited in what it could
5 do, and also our crews were not trained to fly under very complex weather
6 conditions. But in the period that you just described, we did have, for
7 several days, a complex weather conditions. The so-called QGOs, and this
8 was true of the region of Crna Rijeka and the region in which we were. A
9 flight aircraft which takes off from Italy was fully equipped, and it
10 flew at higher elevations.
11 Q. Sir, it was a simple question: Did you take him to the Bratunac
12 area on the 11th?
13 A. No, we didn't.
14 Q. We also know that General Mladic was in Belgrade on the 14th and
15 15th meeting with President Milosevic, and I'm sure he didn't drive all
16 the way to Belgrade
18 A. If I can answer without being interrupted, Mr. Prosecutor, I
19 remember that flight to Belgrade
20 to Belgrade
21 he was going to meet. The pilot, Major Maran, informed him that the
22 weather conditions were not such as to guarantee a safe flight from
23 Crna Rijeka, but he ordered that we had to take off. So we prepared a
24 helicopter and we took off.
25 The helicopter, which usually covers 3 kilometres in a minute, we
1 flew 45 to 50 minutes to cover 3 kilometres. So we simply -- simply
2 hovered because the fog was so dense. We tried to go towards Vlasenica.
3 We saw the weather conditions would be better there on the mountain slope
4 of Romanija; however, we had to land in a valley, literally in a brook.
5 The general was very upset. He yelled at us saying he was going to be
6 late for the meeting. Only then he noticed that we only had our personal
7 weapons. I had a revolver, the major had a pistol, and he tried to cross
8 the woods with Major Maran, to the roads, the main roads between
9 Vlasenica and Han Pijesak, there they stopped a vehicle which returned
10 them to Han Pijesak, and from there, he took off in a car and went to
12 I stayed by the helicopter for nearly an entire day waiting for
13 the weather conditions to improve as to allow me to takeoff and go to the
14 base in which we were stationed, which were some 3 kilometres away. In
15 the meantime, the military police security came to secure my position,
16 because at that time, the Muslim forces were also breaking through those
17 particular areas. And, obviously, Major Maran came back, and he flew off
18 with me. I believe this was on the 13th or the 14th of July.
19 Q. Sir, you'll always have the ability to explain any answer, and
20 lawyers - and especially prosecutors - may sometimes interrupt if they
21 think we're not getting at --
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's move, Mr. McCloskey, please.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
24 Q. What day did you takeoff to try to get Mladic to Belgrade
25 A. I believe it was on the 13th or the 14th of July.
1 Q. About what time?
2 A. In the morning hours, could be around 9.00 or 10.00.
3 Q. All right. Now, let's go to the 26th of July. We saw the -- a
4 bit of the flight, and you've identified yourself in that helicopter as
5 the flight engineer as you were going towards the Boksanica site.
6 Did you watch the whole video, they showed you the whole video?
7 A. I'm not sure what "entire video" comprises, but I saw a bit more
8 than this very moment. I know that a part of the flight that preceded
9 that was also filmed, and later on when we arrived at Boksanica, but I'm
10 not sure what the whole video comprises. But let me just say that I was
11 shown more than what we could see here.
12 Q. Okay. And you've said you can't be seen anywhere on the video at
13 Boksanica, and you went into a long explanation that you made a special
14 effort to stay out of the front of the camera; is that right?
15 A. Yes, that's correct.
16 Q. Well, if you've seen the video, surely you recall seeing that
17 after Mladic was dropped off at Boksanica, he turned around and waves
18 goodbye and the helicopter flies off. Are you telling us you stayed
19 behind while that helicopter flew off into this very dangerous space with
20 no engineering officer? Or did you, maybe, just go get some fuel or put
21 the helicopter in a safer spot or something like that?
22 A. I wouldn't say that the area of Boksanica was as dangerous to
23 prevent Major Maran from leaving the region on his own. I stayed behind,
24 I assume, for the following reason: Because he had to go and get some
25 other passengers, and if there were four passengers, this way he could
1 fit them all in without flying twice. It only required five or ten
2 minutes of flight. When you are asking about the fuel, we would always
3 fill-in the reservoir in the evening, at the end of the day, in order for
4 the helicopter to be able to fly to Banja Luka in the morning with the
5 full reservoir. So the only reason why I stayed behind was that he could
6 go and get more passengers and nothing bad could happen to him on that
8 Q. Well, you say "I assume," so you don't know.
9 A. I can't be sure, as I can't be sure of many other things, but I'm
10 just saying why it would happen for a pilot to fly on his own because
11 this happened on several occasions, and this would have been one of the
12 reasons. If you had to take four passengers, then it was easier to fly
13 only once instead of flying twice bringing in three persons on one
14 occasion and then additional person on the second occasion. As you said
15 yourself, this was a dangerous area.
16 Q. So who did he go to bring back? It must have been pretty
17 important if they are going to leave a perfectly good flight engineer
18 just hanging around and fly this very expensive machine. Who did he
19 bring back?
20 A. I assume it must have been somebody from the Main Staff, or
21 possibly interpreters. As I said previously, the general came in with a
22 cameramen, so I assume the interpreters had to be brought in from the
23 press centre, possibly somebody else, General Tolimir or somebody else,
24 but it must have been somebody important.
25 Q. So you don't know?
1 A. No, I don't know. Possibly he went to pick up the general's
3 Q. Is it possible you went with him? And if you don't really know,
4 it's certainly possible you went with him and came back later.
5 A. No, I stayed behind in the region of Boksanica.
6 Q. You clearly remember that, but you don't have a clear memory of
7 who he brought back. How is that?
8 A. Every day we transported passengers several times between
9 Boksanica and Crna Rijeka or Boksanica and Han Pijesak. I can't remember
10 all the passengers, but I do remember that I was left behind because I
11 was left behind on all of these days. It wasn't the first time it
12 happened. I would normally be left behind.
13 Q. It's normal to fly every day to Boksanica and leave the flight
14 engineer and go back into that air-space where there is Muslims, there is
15 your own troops, and there is NATO, no flight engineer, and coming back
16 with very valuable cargo such as General Tolimir with no flight engineer?
17 Come on, sir.
18 A. As I said, a Gazelle helicopter is a light-transport helicopter.
19 It had no defence weapons, so if anybody was to shoot at us, be it a
20 fighter plane or an infantry man from the woods, we could simply look at
21 them and give them sort of a mean look. There was nothing we could do
22 about this, and for that reason they did not need a flight engineer. A
23 pilot was enough to fly the aircraft, and exactly as you said, this was a
24 dangerous zone, and this is why we tried to decrease the number of
25 flights and increase the number of passengers.
1 Q. All right. You mentioned, briefly, on Friday remembering a -- a
2 meeting with General Smith and General Mladic at the Jela Restaurant, and
3 we know from this trial that there was a meeting - as we can see from a
4 UN report at 65 ter 2943 - of a meeting between General Mladic, Tolimir,
5 and Smith. And I want to show you a few blurbs on that because, again,
6 it was caught on video, and I think you will see yourself again on video.
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: So if we could, again, go to 65 ter 4590, and as
8 we are doing that, I'll just read back due what you said:
9 Q. "Well, it was my personal position in terms of being in
10 photographs and being recorded in any way -- well, I'm simply not in
11 favour of that. I don't have an inclination. I don't want to be
12 photographed or filmed, so throughout the war, I always tried to be
13 behind the camera. I didn't want to have my face, my photograph taken,
14 that's simply not something that I craved. So from the time we got off
15 the helicopter, I was always behind the cameramen, but I was also close
16 to General Mladic who was moving about the clearing."
17 Emphasis, my own, obviously not yours. And we'll just start with
18 a few blurbs to see if you can recollect any of this.
19 [Video-clip played]
20 MR. McCLOSKEY:
21 Q. We started off with a brief little meeting where you could see
22 General Mladic and General Smith, do you know if you were ever inside
23 that building seeing any part of that? I know it wasn't much, so ...
24 A. No, I did not witness any part of the meeting, so those of us who
25 belonged to the escort were not allowed in, neither those of us who were
1 members of the crew of Mr. Mladic or Mr. Mladic's security, nor the
2 security of General Smith. We all stayed in the parking-lot, and when we
3 were informed that the meeting was over, then we went to the region of
4 Boksanica. So we approached the helicopter. This helicopter was across
5 the street from the Jela Motel, maybe some 50 metres from the road.
6 Q. So as we look at this still that's there at 00.00.13, does that
7 look roughly across the field from the Jela that you remember?
8 A. What we can now see on the screen?
9 Q. Yes.
10 A. Yes, this is across the road from the Jela Motel, so there was a
11 small parking-lot, the road, and then this field where we landed with our
13 Q. Okay. Let's continue.
14 [Video-clip played]
15 MR. McCLOSKEY:
16 Q. I know your back was to the -- to the cameraman, but was that
17 you, your left side that, you know, we saw immediately preceding -- we'll
18 just go back. I'm sorry. Right there, which is 00.00.34.
19 A. Yes, this is me. My seat was on the left-hand side. I was
20 standing by the helicopter, and we were preparing the helicopter for the
21 take off. I guess that I brought in the general's staff and I was
22 preparing the seat for the general.
23 Q. And so where is your next destination? Do you know as you're
24 preparing the seat, do you know where you're going next? Have you been
25 told yet?
1 A. The pilot knew that. He was told that in front of the motel. He
2 was told where we were to go. Then the general turned and invited
3 General Smith to go with him on the helicopter. He said it was easier to
4 fly on a helicopter than to go by car, but General Smith refused that.
5 I'm not sure if he joined us later on, but he went -- he was invited to
7 Q. Okay. And did -- you said part of your duties was navigation.
8 Did you help get the craft to Boksanica?
9 A. Yes, as far as navigation is concerned, but the distance was very
10 small and we knew this recently very well, even without looking at the
12 Q. All right. Let's continue. It's not much, I hope, if we've done
13 it right.
14 [Video-clip played]
15 MR. McCLOSKEY:
16 Q. Okay. We've fast forwarded it now. Do you recognise where
17 you're approaching to now?
18 A. Yes, I can recognise this. On the previous part of the footage,
19 which you fast forwarded so it didn't explain it, we approached the
20 region of Boksanica but we were at the foot of the mountain. This is
21 where we landed, and the general explained that there was quite a large
22 distance to walk up the hill and that the helicopter would be insecure if
23 left there, if we were going to accompany him, so one of us would have to
24 stay by the helicopter. And this is why he told the pilot to takeoff
25 again and to try and land higher up on Boksanica. He supposed that there
1 would be enough room there, and here on the footage, you could see the
2 pilot indicating with his hand. And this is why we moved and landed in
3 this field near Boksanica. And in the back there you can see the white
4 roof of the check-point, UN-manned check-point, so where we landed this
5 is the space of some 100 to 150 metres, and on the right-hand side of the
6 helicopter, on this picture that you can see right now, there was a road;
7 on the left-hand side there was a wood path by these pine trees, and
8 there is also a monument to an UN soldier that was killed there because
9 he stepped on a mine. I believe it was a Ukrainian UN soldier. So I
10 believe this is the first time that we arrived to Boksanica during the
11 times of negotiations.
12 Q. Well, that was going to be my question. Given that you're
13 getting your bearings and figuring out the best place to land, that would
14 indicate this was your first helicopter visit there; correct?
15 A. Yes. Yes, that's correct, this was the first time we came there.
16 Q. Okay. Let's let it go.
17 [Video-clip played]
18 MR. McCLOSKEY:
19 Q. Did you -- were you around General Mladic when he went into the
20 comms tent there and was trying to get ahold of Avdo Palic?
21 A. I was present. He wasn't -- he wasn't in a tent, but, rather, in
22 a log house and in a container that was there, so one part of that
23 particular facility was a log cabin and one was this container, and he
24 entered there because the radio station was there through which he got
25 into communication with, I assume, the Muslim forces in Zepa or,
1 possibly, with Ukrainian unit. Later on, he did not enter but he stayed
2 outside. The tables for negotiations were outside. And I was by his
3 side all the time together with Major Maran.
4 Q. Okay. Thank you for that clarification. Let's just continue
5 with some brief segments.
6 [Video-clip played]
7 MR. McCLOSKEY:
8 Q. So can you -- if you remember, can you explain what just
9 happened? If you don't remember, that's fine.
10 A. We went to pick up General Tolimir. I assume the negotiations
11 were about to start, so the General wanted to be present.
12 Q. So you and the pilot went back and got General Tolimir?
13 A. I can't remember whether I came back as well, possibly. I cannot
14 recall that with certainty.
15 Q. Well, you know Colonel -- Lieutenant-Colonel Kosoric, do you
16 remember him, the fellow with a big mustache?
17 A. Yes, I remember him, and he was around in those days. This is
18 the first time I saw him. I didn't know who he was. Previously, I saw
19 him in these days, and later on, after the operation, I didn't see him
21 Q. Okay. Let's continue.
22 [Video-clip played]
23 MR. McCLOSKEY:
24 Q. And who is the fellah behind General Mladic, if you can tell?
25 A. That is Major Dusan Maran.
1 Q. Okay. Thank you. Let's keep going.
2 [Video-clip played]
3 MR. McCLOSKEY:
4 Q. And who is there on the left side of the screen next to
5 Major Maran and behind General Mladic?
6 A. That is one of the persons that were escorting General Mladic. I
7 believe his name was Zrnic, and I believe he was from Sarajevo, that is
8 all I know. I didn't know him too well.
9 Q. The person on the far left of the screen, the person with the
10 dark hair, isn't that you?
11 A. Yes, that's me, while I had dark hair.
12 Q. And that's at 00.02.24. So let's keep going.
13 [Video-clip played]
14 MR. McCLOSKEY:
15 Q. Okay, and here we are again, 00.03.02 and that's you again on the
16 left side of the screen stepping right in front of the camera lens.
17 A. Yes, these are the rare moments. I could not flee from the
18 general. I initially told you that there was a minefield around this
19 place, which we do not know specifically where it was, so I could not
20 roam the wider area. I kept close to them, and, of course, it was
21 inevitable for me to appear on the screen, especially so because the
22 general may issue, at any moment, a task to me. And another reason is
23 that only the three of us were there as security detail for the general.
24 It was possible for somebody to open fire from the woods.
25 We were the first time there on that location. We didn't even
1 know where the Muslim positions were.
2 Q. Okay. I think we can just finish it up.
3 [Video-clip played]
4 MR. McCLOSKEY:
5 Q. All right. We are going to be done pretty quick, sir. There is
6 one other area I wanted to ask you about, and that is something -- a
7 statement you said, this was at page 33919, and you said:
8 "General Gvero came there because he wanted to discuss some
9 issues with General Mladic because for several days he'd been unable to
10 get in touch with him because the General was avoiding contact with any
11 officers that were not working on Zepa; or, more specifically, the
12 Boksanica thing."
13 So I want to explore with you this issue of whether or not
14 General Gvero was actually working on Zepa prior to this time. And the
15 first thing I would like to do is go to the exhibit 65 ter 2747. That's
16 an UN report. But I'll perhaps remind you of a -- do you remember a
17 meeting between General Mladic and General Gvero and General Smith at the
18 Jela restaurant on 25 July, the day before you were in Boksanica?
19 And let's go to -- well, excuse me now. Let's just look at
20 paragraph 1 of this report, which is dated 26 July. And it says:
21 "General Smith met General Mladic at 'restaurant Jela' at
22 Hans-Kram at 1230 hours on 25 July 1995
23 Our purpose was to discuss the situation in Zepa and also to follow-up on
24 aspects of the agreement signed between General Smith and General Mladic
25 on 19 July. General Mladic was accompanied by General Gvero."
1 And also this document goes on and says that General Mladic
2 arrived in a helicopter. So that must have been you that took
3 General Mladic to that meeting. So surely you remember General Mladic,
4 General Gvero, and General Smith meeting about -- at the Jela restaurant,
5 the day before the material you've been talking about?
6 A. I assume that if he arrived there by helicopter to the area of
7 the Jela restaurant, then it must have been us who transported them. I
8 don't know what they discussed. I cannot tell you with certainty that
9 General Gvero was there as well. I knew that General Smith was there
10 because I spoke to his associate standing outside.
11 We could not see what was going on in there. They may as well
12 have been drinking coffee and tell us later that they had negotiations,
13 but I don't recall what they discussed. I wasn't privy to that.
14 Q. All right.
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: Well, let's go to another exhibit, P00191.
16 Q. This is that same day, and just to -- July 25. It's a document
17 sent, as a you'll see, to the Main Staff of the VRS on the 25th of July
18 to General Gvero or General Miletic, and it's from General Tolimir, and
19 it's entitled: "Agreement on Disarmament of Zepa."
20 I won't go into it details of it since you don't know the
21 details, but clearly you can see from this document it's related to the
22 same subject matter of the Jela restaurant meeting, and it would show
23 that General Gvero was an interested party in Zepa; wouldn't it?
24 A. This is the first time I see this document. First, I will have
25 to read it to be able to interpret it. I cannot confirm something that
1 I've never seen in my life. If it was addressed to him or to
2 General Miletic, well, maybe the reason for that was that they were the
3 only ones at the moment in the operations room of the Main Staff, all the
4 other generals being out in the field. It can be seen from the first
5 sentence, We send you this to forward to another corps command to the
6 Sarajevo Romanija Corps, so they are giving them a courier's task.
7 As for the rest of the document, I can't comment on it because
8 I've never read it and it would be serious for me to try to do anything
9 about it.
10 Q. Fair enough.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: Let's look at P01333. And this is the English
12 version, but we shouldn't -- we shouldn't broadcast it. This is an
13 intercepted conversation that was intercepted on 25 July; A is the
14 English, C is the B/C/S.
15 Q. And the time of this conversation was 0945 hours. And the
16 previous document had a receipt of 0530 hours. So a few hours later we
17 have a conversation where, at the end of the conversation --
18 JUDGE KWON: Exhibit number again, please.
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: 133 A -- sorry, 1333 A; A and C.
20 Q. And we can see from the end of the intercept that the intercept
21 operators concluded that X was, in fact, Milan Gvero. And so if we look
22 at this intercept, mid-way down the first page in both languages, we can
23 see that General Gvero, when asked in what condition are they up there?
24 He says:
25 "Good, very good. They signed the agreement last night related
1 to the surrender of Zepa."
2 Then there is some talk, and they go on, and if we look at page
3 2. And in the English it's -- there is a little talk about Glamoc, but
4 we can tell from this that General Gvero is certainly informed of the
5 agreement, the important agreement, that's gone on in Zepa.
6 So let me show you another intercept.
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: It's P1334.
8 Q. Saying let's not send this out. A and B.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: No broadcast.
10 MR. McCLOSKEY:
11 Q. And this is between General Milan Gvero and a fellah named
12 Subara. It's on 25 July, a little later now at 0950 hours. And again, I
13 just want to call your attention to what Subara is concerned about,
14 what's going on in the media on Zepa and Srebrenica.
15 And again, General Gvero talks about, as we can see from the
16 first few lines, that an agreement was signed last night. We are going
17 to allow everything. If they are smart, the ICRC will control it and an
18 UNPROFOR representative will also be present. It talks about some more
19 of the details, I won't go in it, but if this is an accurate intercept,
20 you will agree with me that this shows that General Gvero, despite what
21 you have said, was certainly knowledgeable in the events that were going
22 on in Zepa at the time?
23 A. Mr. Prosecutor, this is the first time I see those two documents.
24 You read through them so quickly I could not read them. I cannot agree
25 with you about something that I see for the first time and have not
1 studied. Person X could be many other people, not just General Gvero. I
2 could have been that person, X. We all spoke on the phone. I don't know
3 which intercepted conversation this was about.
4 I started to read the letterhead and you started asking questions
5 about me agreeing with something that I have not had an opportunity to
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: I don't have any further questions.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. McCloskey.
9 Mr. Krgovic, is there re-examination?
10 MR. KRGOVIC: No, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. That brings your testimony to an end
12 here. On behalf of the Trial Chamber, I wish to thank you for having
13 come over to give evidence at such short notice, and I also wish you, on
14 behalf of everyone, a safe journey back home.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Documents?
17 [Witness withdrew]
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Krgovic?
19 MR. JOSSE: None.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Mr. McCloskey?
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: I offer 1333 A, the intercept, and then the
22 video-clip 4590.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Any objections? We hear none. They are -- wasn't
24 the first one already admitted or ...
25 Mr. McCloskey.
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm told it was not. It may have been, I thought
2 it was, but I'm told it's not.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. It's just a vague impression that I had.
4 All right. They are so admitted.
5 That brings to an end your list of witnesses, I take it,
6 Mr. Krgovic, no?
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm sorry, Mr. President, just so I don't lose
8 track, it's A, B, and C so that we get all languages in that intercept.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay that's how I understood you anyway. Thank
11 You don't have any further witnesses? I'm addressing the Gvero
12 Defence team.
13 MR. JOSSE: Sorry, Your Honour, no we don't.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. So we stand adjourned.
15 There is a sitting fixed for Thursday, this Thursday, for the
16 hearing of the Nikolic witness, if he turns up. Otherwise, we will have
17 other proceedings to be notified later. Thank you.
18 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 10.17 a.m.
19 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 9th day of
20 July, 2009, at 2.15 p.m.