1 Wednesday, 17 October 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The Accused Coric not present]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.14 p.m.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, could you please
7 call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Good afternoon, good afternoon
9 everyone in the Court. This is case number IT-04-74-T, the Prosecutor
10 versus Prlic et al thank you, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar. On
12 Wednesday, the 17th of October, I'd like to greet Mr. Stringer, the
13 Defence teams and the accused. Before we call the witness into the
14 courtroom, there are several issues we should deal with. I have noticed
15 that Mr. Coric is absent. What has happened?
16 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we haven't
17 received information of any kind so far that I assume that it's because he
18 occasionally feels ill. He has high pressure sometimes but at the moment
19 I'm not sure what the problem is.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. The Chamber hopes
21 that he will be feeling better rapidly. Mr. Kovacic?
22 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I apologise for taking
23 up your time but I think the two minutes will be quite sufficient. In
24 your decision of the 4th of October 2007, you ordered the Defence to
25 inform the Prosecution by the 17th of October 2007 about the Defence's
1 intentions to use an alibi defence. Your Honours, if I could have until
2 the next week, I would be very grateful because we don't have all the
3 documents we need. We are still waiting for some of them to arrive and we
4 would like to prepare this as best as possible. Naturally, I can provide
5 you with such information and then add supplements or additional
6 information but I don't think that would be a useful way to proceed.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. If I have understood
8 you correctly, you are requesting two additional weeks.
9 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] At the utmost. One week extra
10 should be sufficient, since I'm a little ill now, well, if you give me two
11 weeks, I'll be very happy.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
13 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have
14 already spoken to my colleague, Mr. Kovacic, and we have provided you
15 information about the same subject but we mentioned the period concerned
16 alone and the reason for which we believe that an alibi was at stake but
17 we would also require additional time to collect evidence pursuant to
18 Rule 67.
19 [Trial Chamber confers]
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Stringer, we haven't
21 forgotten you.
22 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. This is an issue which
23 directly affects the rights of the Prosecution and its entitlement to a
24 fair trial as well. Two weeks as a maximum, I find myself it's difficult
25 to object but at the same time, you know, the Defence have had years
1 really to -- of notice, of what are the crimes and the locations and the
2 dates and it's all in the indictment. It's not clear to me why the
3 Defence are not in a position now as opposed to two weeks from now in
4 order to inform themselves and the Trial Chamber and the Prosecution as to
5 the nature of any special defences. We are in the Trial Chamber's hands
6 on this decision, but if this deadline of today is going to be extended,
7 Mr. President, our request is that it be a short extension of two weeks at
8 the maximum, possibly even one week, and that it be a firm deadline. That
9 is to say, that if the deadline is not met, then those -- the Defence will
10 be under the rule not entitled to call alibi witnesses or in our
11 interpretation of the rule to put on alibi evidence beyond the accused
12 giving testimony about that which we recognise they can always do, but we
13 think that if the deadline is not met, then a firm ruling has to be made
14 excluding any other evidence about alibis and special defences.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Trial Chamber has
17 deliberated and given that Mr. Kovacic was ill for a period of time, and
18 the Defence needs some time to collect more documents, the Chamber will
19 grant the Defence an additional week which means that the deadline will be
20 the 24th of October. So you have one additional week.
21 Mr. Khan?
22 MR. KHAN: Good afternoon, Mr. President, Your Honours. One very
23 brief matter on behalf, I understand, of all the accused and Defence
24 counsel in this case. There has been some consultation with my learned
25 friend for the Prosecution. As I understand the Court schedule at the
1 moment, the Court will break for the Christmas recess on the 13th of
2 December and I understand that any 98 bis motions that any Defence team
3 wishes to make will be argued on the 7th of January. Your Honour, that's
4 quite close upon the 13th of December. There is no objection from the
5 Prosecution, indeed I understand they support the Defence application to
6 extend the date so that any 98 bis motions that may be argued by any
7 accused be argued on the 21st of January.
8 Your Honour, this may have at least two advantages, in the event
9 that any applications for provisional release are made and granted, it may
10 assist the Court administration in deciding its schedule, but in addition,
11 it would allow the Defence to focus its submissions. Of course, in the
12 bad old days of submissions of no case to answer or 98 bis, everything was
13 thrown into the melting pot and that was one reason why the oral
14 application was amended so that Defence counsel really focus submissions
15 to those of merit given the lower threshold of proof. Your Honour, I
16 think the additional time would allow a very hard-working Defence team for
17 the accused that have been in this case time to take a little break over
18 Christmas and, of course, to prepare this matter so that they can do
19 justice to it, and assist Your Honours in determining whether or not any
20 application that is made is properly grounded and I think Your Honour --
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
22 MR. KHAN: -- will speak for himself. I'm sure the Prosecution,
23 those that celebrate Christmas, would also be grateful for a few days with
24 their families instead of working incessantly throughout that period.
25 Your Honour, that is the application.
1 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, Mr. Khan has accurately represented
2 the position of the Prosecution. We have indeed conferred and the
3 Prosecution would not object, in fact we would support, an application to
4 extend by two weeks the timing of the 98 bis submissions from the 7th of
5 January to the 21st of January.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Chamber will deliberate
7 tomorrow. We will be meeting tomorrow. And we'll deliberate and next
8 time we see each other we'll tell you about our decision. As far as I'm
9 concerned, there is a scheduling order, and this scheduling order has been
10 subject of many discussions within the Chamber, and we took all the
11 various elements into consideration. We have listened to the application
12 made. We have taken note of the Prosecution's position, and we will
13 inform you of our decision in due course.
14 Since we are dealing with the schedule, I can tie this up with
15 another problem, another issue that I wanted to raise. Next week,
16 Wednesday is a holiday and the Chamber has decided that in order to allow
17 everyone to have a break after this diabolical rhythm since August we have
18 decided to not have a hearing on Thursday, and thus, Wednesday -- a
19 witness will be coming on Monday and Tuesday. The witness for the 22nd
20 and 23rd of October has been scheduled for a long time and I have
21 discovered that the witness in question will not be appearing. I don't
22 know the reason for which this witness will not be appearing, if he is ill
23 I understand that he can't come, but if that is not the case, there is no
24 reason for the witness not to appear, and if the witness is creating
25 difficulties, we can issue a subpoena, a summons, for Monday, which means
1 that the witness could catch a plane on Saturday morning to get here.
2 Mr. Stringer, why is this witness not coming here on Monday?
3 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, could I ask that we briefly go into
4 private session? It might --
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Let's go into
6 private session.
7 [Private session]
11 Pages 23876-23878 redacted. Private session
16 [Open session]
17 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we are back in open session.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, I'll give you the
19 floor because there are several IC numbers we have to deal with.
20 THE REGISTRAR: Thank you, Your Honour. OTP has submitted its
21 response to Defence exhibits tendered through Miroslav Rupcic. The list
22 submitted by OTP has been given IC 694. One of the parties have also
23 submitted lists of documents to be tendered through Witness Ray Lane. The
24 list submitted by 1D shall be given Exhibit number 695. Thank you,
25 Your Honours.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
2 Could the usher now bring the witness into the courtroom?
3 According to our calculations, the legal officer has informed us
4 that the Praljak Defence has an hour and the Petkovic Defence also has one
5 hour at its disposal. That should be the case if the Judges haven't made
6 a mistake. Mr. Kovacic, I believe, that Mr. Praljak will be conducting
7 the cross-examination. He's ready. He has his maps, he has the lectern.
8 Inform us very rapidly of the exceptional circumstances.
9 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] That's quite right. You've seen the
10 documents. You are familiar with the facts. He was there at the time.
11 You know all the details of the situation. So I believe that situation is
12 in accordance with your decision and as a result, Praljak should be
13 granted leave to examine.
14 [The witness entered court]
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good day, commander, and I
16 apologise for having made you wait but we had to deal with certain
17 procedural matters before calling you into the courtroom. Now that we
18 have done that, we can commence with the cross-examination and its
19 General Praljak who will be cross-examining you in person.
20 WITNESS: RAYMOND LANE [Resumed]
21 Cross-examination by the Accused Praljak:
22 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon,
23 Mr. Lane. Mr. Lane, due to our limited time available, and I will be
24 dealing with questions on the map, could you please answer as briefly as
25 possible. If Their Honours require more extensive explanations or
1 additional explanations, they will ask you for them. As far as this part
2 of my cross-examination is concerned, I would just like us to look into
3 the kind of information there was on the ground, the information you had
4 at your disposal and what the basic essential facts are. So could you
5 give us the kind of answers that a professional officer is expected to
7 My first question: During your stay or tour of duty in Bosnia and
8 Herzegovina, did you ever meet with me?
9 A. Sir, that's a very, very good question. I think I met with you on
10 one occasion but I cannot be sure. If you're hair was black in 1992 it's
11 a very strong possibility I met you, sir.
12 Q. That's a difficult answer. Could you please tell me when you
13 think that was and where it was?
14 A. It would have been very, very early on in my arrival in Mostar,
15 when we met with Mr. Stojic, Bojic, Mr. Coric, and possibly you at that
17 Q. So you believe that in October, I was in Mostar. Would that be
18 the conclusion that we can make, that in October 1992, I must have been in
19 Mostar? If that is a possibility, then that possibility could have been
20 in October; is that right?
21 A. That's my point. I cannot put -- I cannot say it for definite.
22 Q. In your statement, in paragraph 60, you claim that
23 Brigadier General Milivoj Petkovic was the commander of the HVO Main
24 Staff, and then you go on to say that he had command and control of the
25 entire HVO military organisation together with General Slobodan Praljak.
1 Then, in the next paragraph, paragraph 61, towards the end, you say that
2 the highest military commander of the HVO, General Petkovic, and then in
3 62, you say General Slobodan Praljak was the HVO commander in chief, and
4 his office was also in the HVO headquarters in West Mostar.
5 So in your statement, we have certain categorical clear cut
6 statements and allegations that is that Brigadier General Petkovic was the
7 commander and that he had an office in Mostar, but here in court you say
8 that you may have seen me in October in Mostar and, yesterday, in the --
9 in your testimony, you said you had met with me implying several
10 occasions. Could you give a brief commentary? On what grounds do you
11 claim that there were two commanders of the HVO, that I had an office in
12 Mostar, where and when? Or do you still stand by what you said, that you
13 may have met me once in October when I wasn't grey haired but young,
14 dark-haired and charming?
15 A. Sir, I didn't actually use the word "charming". I did say in my
16 testimony that I saw you rarely, in fact the information with respect to
17 your position within the HVO that you refer to there was information that
18 was given to me by UNPROFOR. My experience in dealing with
19 General Petkovic led me to believe that he was the commander of the HVO on
20 the ground, and that's where the contrast might appear. But to repeat, I
21 said it in my testimony, I had no dealings with you during my period
23 Q. Thank you very much.
24 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Could the usher please give
25 this map to the witness? And the part marked in red, could it be placed
1 under the ELMO so that everyone can see it?
2 Q. Sir, I will now show you a map of Mostar, in view of the fact that
3 you went there frequently, and we'll try to establish on this map a few
4 matters that you may have known or you may not have known, but we'll see.
5 Let us, to save time, I have marked here, on top, the road going through
6 Eastern Mostar, below the hill. Can you see it? The road going above the
7 River Neretva towards the top of the map. Yes, that's the one. Do you
8 know that that was the main road from Ploce to Sarajevo, Ploce, Capljina,
9 Mostar, Jablanica, Konjic, Sarajevo. Or further on Rama, Prozor,
10 Uskoplje, Gornji Vakuf, depending on the name given by the different
11 entities. Is that correct, sir?
12 A. Correct, sir, yes.
13 Q. The circle which I have marked with a number 1, is that the old
14 bridge according to the best of your knowledge?
15 A. It appears to be.
16 Q. Thank you. We shall stop there just for a moment. In your
17 statement, in paragraph 73, you stated that the army of Republika Srpska
18 targeted you as were you crossing the bridge near the dam, and in
19 paragraph 24, you said that it was very difficult to cross the Old Bridge,
20 it was extremely difficult to cross the bridge and enter the eastern side
21 of Mostar, and there is another statement according to which you crossed
22 along the dam below the bridge that was south of the Old Bridge. Can you
23 please tell us where the dam that was south of the Old Bridge was?
24 A. Seems to be a little bit of confusion. I don't think I actually
25 said I was targeted on the Old Bridge by Serb artillery. I was targeted
1 on the bridge close to the hydroelectric dam which I don't know if we can
2 see it here but down somewhere down here.
3 Q. Very well. Is there a dam and bridge south of the Old Bridge? Is
4 there a dam south of the Old Bridge?
5 A. The word "dam" might be incorrect. Hydroelectric plant, but there
6 is a bridge down there which you are probably aware of.
7 Q. A bridge below the Old Bridge, you're claiming that there was
8 another bridge to the south of the Old Bridge; is that correct?
9 A. Yes, yes, sir, yes, sir.
10 Q. But you said that the only communication between East and West
11 Mostar, in the old town, was the Old Bridge. Which bridge was further
12 south than the Old Bridge? Which -- and had not been destroyed? Their
13 Honours have been in the case for a long time. They have seen the
14 pictures. Was there a bridge south of the old bridge that was not
15 destroyed and that could be crossed, whether it was a bridge or a dam or
17 A. There was a bridge, sir, which was damaged but passable.
18 Q. Thank you very much for your answer. Tell me also something else.
19 During your tour of duty, did hundreds of people cross the Old Bridge
20 going left and right?
21 A. We are now talking about the Stari Most bridge; is that right,
23 Q. Yes.
24 A. Yes, yes.
25 Q. Will you look at circle number 2, please?
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Commandant, what General Praljak
2 has just asked you, whether people crossed the Old Bridge and you said
3 yes, hundreds of people. But what I would like to know, the people who
4 were crossing the bridge that you must have seen because you said yes, do
5 you remember whether they were wearing military uniforms? Did you see
6 military men circulating across that bridge?
7 THE WITNESS: Sorry, the traffic of people across the bridge,
8 Your Honour, from October to my stay in March, decreased significantly,
9 but to answer your direct question, I did not see military -- people
10 wearing military pattern uniform crossing the bridge.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
12 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Sir, when you were crossing to the left and to the right, that
14 there was a check-point in control of the crossing. Also, do you -- are
15 you aware that this check-point existed on both ends of the Old Bridge?
16 A. That is correct, sir, yes.
17 Q. Thank you. Let us move on, please. The circle marked with the
18 number 4, would you agree with me in saying that this is the area known as
19 Vranica, where the 4th Corps headquarters was located of the 41st Army of
20 Bosnia and Herzegovina and the communication system? Would you agree?
21 A. The headquarters was located there, sir. I'm in no position to
22 say the communications system was located there.
23 Q. Thank you. Are you aware that dozens of officers of the BiH army
24 were working there, either belonging to the 4th Corps or the 41st Army,
25 who went to work there on a daily basis, crossing the bridge, going back
1 home, so that throughout that period, dozens of people were working in
2 that building, officers, security people, communications officers and so
4 A. I was not aware that dozens of people were working in that
5 building. In fact on the occasions that I was there I think I said
6 yesterday there were not that many people in it.
7 Q. Thank you for your answer. The circle marked with 2, would you
8 agree with me that that is the Rondo, the location that you have
9 mentioned, number 2, the circle number 2, is that the Rondo to the best of
10 your recollection?
11 A. Yes, sir.
12 Q. The circle with the number there is that the hotel Ero that was
13 also mentioned, Mr. Karnavas spoke about it, about the hotel, the
14 restaurant, et cetera, is that the Ero Hotel?
15 A. I cannot answer that, sir, my memory doesn't go back that far but
16 if you tell me it is, I believe you.
17 Q. Thank you. If you just say I can't remember, that will make
18 things easier.
19 The numbers H1, H2, H3 and H4, have been written to mark the
20 hospitals on the right-hand of the river. H1 is Bijeli Brijeg, H2 is the
21 surgery department, H3 is the psychiatry ward, and ophthalmology, H4 is
22 the tuberculosis infirmary. Did you ever visit any one of these four
23 hospitals on the west side of the Neretva River?
24 A. I think I visited three out of the four, sir, yes.
25 Q. Thank you. Do you know that throughout that period, these were
1 hospitals as we call them, they had everything a hospital has, beds,
2 hospital beds, for patients, some had labs, some had surgery wards, X-ray
3 equipment and so on? Did you see all this in those hospitals, all the
4 elements that contribute to a hospital being a hospital?
5 A. Again, my memory isn't that good on the issue but I do remember in
6 this location here.
7 Q. H1, yes?
8 A. H1 was a well-equipped hospital.
9 Q. Thank you. Are you aware that throughout your tour of duty and
10 later as well, the entire population of the city of Mostar was treated and
11 the surroundings of course regardless of sex, age, religion or ethnicity?
12 Are you aware of that. If you don't remember, never mind. Tell me so, so
13 that we can move on.
14 A. There is a conflict with this because I hear what you're saying,
15 sir, but the reality I found on the ground on the eastern side of the
16 river, as I already gave in testimony, was slightly different, so when you
17 ask me am I aware that all people were --
18 Q. Mr. Lane, please, please, please, sir.
19 A. To answer your question -- okay.
20 Q. My question is very clear. Please answer my question. Should a
21 discussion be necessary for you to repeat what you have already said,
22 Their Honours will allow to you do so. I have to abide by the
23 instructions I have. Did you notice during your visit that as far as the
24 hospitals I have enumerated are concerned, that there was any kind of
25 discrimination in treatment regarding gender, age, ethnicity, et cetera?
1 A. No.
2 Q. Do you know that treatment was free of charge?
3 A. I didn't, sir, no.
4 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, the previous no, what does that
5 exactly refer to because the question is rather complex. Does it mean you
6 do not know or does it mean certain facts were not as Mr. Praljak puts
7 them to you.
8 THE WITNESS: It means I wasn't aware of these different groups.
9 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
10 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation].
11 Q. Sir, yesterday, during your testimony, you said that you brought
12 medicines to the war hospital on the east side. You even used the plural,
13 hospitals. My question is a simple one. Tell me or draw for us a single
14 hospital on the east side that had a single bed for a patient or a single
15 X-ray or a single laboratory or surgery or anything that would be
16 reminiscent of a hospital. Just point to a single institution that might
17 be described as a hospital very loosely even?
18 MR. STRINGER: Just to ask if we could indicate specifically what
19 period of time this drawing is to pertain to. When -- when -- what's the
20 period of time that he wants the witness to address? What month or
22 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Exclusively the period from his arrival until Mr. Lane left. I'm
24 talking about that period. I'm limiting my questions to that period. So
25 I repeat: Could you draw on the east side or point to a single building
1 or location which, in the broadest sense could be called a hospital in
2 which you saw a single patient in a bed or an x-ray apparatus or anything
3 that might look like a hospital. If you could, could you please indicate
4 where that was?
5 A. Sir, the delivery, and it was only one convoy, of the equipment
6 that you refer to was done at speed, as I indicated, and I do not know nor
7 can I remember where we dropped that stuff off.
8 Q. I won't be asking you about that convoy, what you brought, et
9 cetera. I'm asking whether you personally, your feet, your body, your
10 eyes, did you enter any building, any premise in which you saw a
11 bed-ridden patient or anything that might look like a hospital, a
12 laboratory, an x-ray apparatus, on the east side, a surgery theatre, at
13 the time when you personally went there? Did you yourself with your own
14 eyes see such a building?
15 A. I did.
16 Q. Please, can you tell us where that was roughly?
17 A. I've already indicated that I cannot remember.
18 Q. Thank you. Could I have an IC number for this map? Will you just
19 move the map a little so we can see north, south, east, west? You will
20 see I've marked that on the map. Do you agree with me that these are the
21 sides of the world? North, south, east, west?
22 A. Yes, I think we will agree on that.
23 Q. Thank you. Could I have an IC number if Your Honours believe the
24 witness should sign the map, he can do so.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Can I have a number,
1 Mr. Registrar?
2 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. The document just marked shall
3 be given Exhibit number IC 696. Thank you, Your Honour.
4 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Can the witness sign the map
5 and put a date on it?
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, please, put down today's
7 date, sir.
8 THE WITNESS: [Marks]
9 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Could we have 2D 00458 on
10 the e-court, please? 2D 00458. 2D 00458.
11 Q. Witness, Mr. Lane, will you please read. The date coincides with
12 the period when you were there, 8th of March, signed by Sulejman
13 Budakovic. Let me ask you first whether you know who Sulejman Budakovic
15 A. Negative, sir.
16 Q. Do you know that he was deputy commander or rather Chief of Staff
17 of the 4th Corps? He was deputy commander, the deputy of Arif Pasalic, do
18 you know that?
19 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Mr. Praljak, we seem not to have this document.
20 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] 2D 00458. No, it's not in
21 my set of documents, Your Honours. Because I took it from Mr. Stojic's
22 Defence but we have it on the e-court. I unfortunately didn't have time
23 to get a copy. I just wanted to check something. It's not due to any
24 laziness or irresponsibility on my part. It is very difficult for us from
25 the detention to communicate with others. So let me ask the witness.
1 Q. Have you read the document, sir?
2 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, Mr. President, there is one of the
3 problems one experiences when the accused conducts a cross-examination --
4 the cross-examination himself rather than having his attorney do it.
5 Because if his attorney was able to do it or was conducting the cross then
6 we would all have the hard copy and indeed the witness would be in a
7 position to look at the paper in front of him rather than trying to read
8 off the screen which is not the preferable way at all to proceed, I think,
9 in fairness to the witness. So you know, it's -- hopefully it's just one
10 document but if there are more documents that the witness is not provided
11 with on paper we are going to object to it. There is a procedure and it's
12 not being followed. And it's not being followed because the accused is
13 conducting the cross-examination and we shouldn't suffer as a result of
15 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, thank you,
16 Your Honour. I have to be quite sincere that Mr. Praljak asked permission
17 from me to use this document, so I take on the blame if I did not
18 understand his request for a hard copy. As far as I know, it is the only
19 such document. It is brief. It is in the e-court, and I don't think the
20 witness will have difficulty in reading it. Thank you.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer, a response on my
22 part. You said that the Prosecution should not suffer. In substance, you
23 are right, but when you look at the document, which I discovered the same
24 time as you, our professional knowledge should allow us to reduce the
25 prejudice. This document is not complicated, and your great
1 professionalism should enable you to deal with all possible questions
2 relating to this document, but basically, you are right, the Defence
3 should give you and us the list of documents and the documents itself, but
4 Mr. Praljak has explained that from the Detention Unit, there is some
5 difficulty in doing that.
6 So please continue, Mr. Praljak.
7 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Witness, do you see that it is addressed to the command of the
9 1st Mostar Brigade and it says, based on the agreement with the HVO on
10 joint engagement of artillery units against the same aggressor, the common
11 aggressor, you should employ a single artillery weapon from your unit,
12 howitzer 122 millimetres, D30, together with support staff and artillery
14 My question is very brief: Are you aware, during your tour of
15 duty, that the army of BiH and the HVO were jointly fighting the army of
16 Republika Srpska? Are you aware of that, that the front lines towards the
17 army of Republika Srpska were jointly manned by the HVO and the ABiH?
18 A. I'm aware of that, sir. But since this document is in front of
19 me, would you -- if I'm permitted to ask you a question in connection to
20 this document?
21 Q. No, sir. It's me asking the questions. I'd be very happy, please
22 don't misunderstand me if Their Honours would give me another hour's time
23 I would be glad to hear any questions from you but unfortunately, because
24 of the clock which is ticking, I have quite a bit more to cover. My
25 second question: Whether you, as a professional soldier, noticed that the
1 BiH army had artillery weapons? Here we see mention of a D30 howitzer.
2 Did you notice that they did have artillery weapons?
3 A. The answer to that, sir, is yes.
4 Q. Then the last sentence mentions a mixed division. We won't go
5 into discussing how many artillery weapons such a unit has but let us now
6 move on. I'm referring to my set of documents, 3D 01094. 3D 01094.
7 A. Is this in my file?
8 Q. There are only a couple of documents in this, my set of documents,
9 3D -- 3D 01094. It's a document dated the 16th of January 1993. It's a
10 lengthy document. There is no signature, but it is the Chief of Staff of
11 the HVO, Brigadier Milivoj Petkovic. I would like to look through parts
12 of that document with you. So it's dated the 16th of January. It is a
13 collective report regarding the situation and positions of the HVO on the
14 battle front. In the Croatian it is page 2 but you will find it easily.
15 The report from Gornji Vakuf. "Until 1800 hours ... " Have you found it?
16 Not for the night. In the English, it says, "Up until 16 or 1800 hours.
17 Report from Gornji Vakuf." It says that sniper fire continued by the
18 Muslim forces. We have one dead, one wounded soldier, Anto Ljubas wounded
19 and Mato Gazilj from Hrasnica was killed. Have you seen that?
20 A. I'm reading it, sir, yes.
21 Q. But look at the report from Gornji Vakuf 1600 hours and it says,
22 "In relation to the last report, the situation has changed somewhat. The
23 Chetnik shelling has stopped and the canyon fire of Muslim and our forces
24 continued but of lesser intensity."
25 I'm interested in this sentence and I want to ask you, when you
1 were there in October in Uskoplje or Gornji Vakuf and when were you there
2 on the 18th of January, again in Gornji Vakuf, were you personally aware
3 or informed by the British battalion or anyone else that -- that forces of
4 the army of Republika Srpska were regularly shelling Gornji Vakuf?
5 A. I was informed that there had been shelling by the Serb forces.
6 But I don't think the word "regular" was used.
7 Q. Very well. We'll leave out the regular part. Have a look at
8 another document, 3D 01095, 3D 01095. It's in the binder. It's a report
9 from the HVO Main Staff dated the 29th of January 1993. It relates to the
10 28th of January 1993. It concerns that date. As far as I understand, you
11 were in the area at the time. It says report from Prozor. It's the first
12 page, in the Croatian text, report from Prozor. "The cease-fire is mostly
13 respected in the conflict areas between the BH army and our forces. In
14 the villages with Muslim inhabitants, sporadic firing from infantry
15 weapons can be heard. The BH army forces have been fortifying in the
16 temporarily occupied areas. Negotiations on prison exchanges ongoing."
17 At the time, had the cease-fire already been implemented and was
18 the fighting gradually calming down? Does your information, does your
19 knowledge, tally with what you can see in this document?
20 A. I can't comment on that.
21 Q. Very well. Have a look at item 3, please. The southeastern
22 operative zone, the southeastern operative zone of Herzegovina report from
23 Mostar at 1900 hours. I don't want to read this out aloud but could you
24 read it to yourself, to the end of the document, where it says the chief
25 of the Main Staff of the HVO Milivoj Petkovic, they talk about artillery
1 firing, Chetniks used large calibre weapons, then it says 40 shells on
2 Blagaj 5, then it says the same number were fired on Drvenik, Rotimlje,
3 and then the centre of Potoci, the right bank of the Neretva River,
4 anti-aircraft artillery, shell to the Mostar hydroelectric plant, and then
5 there is a report from Mostar, the 29th of January, and it says, in Bijelo
6 Polje and Podvelezje, Vucja Glava, there were shells, Chetniks hit, fired
7 on Drvenik, Blagaj, Plohovice [phoen] it says, Rotimlje and Treban [phoen]
8 were subjected to artillery fire and approximately 100 shells fell on this
10 A. Can I just ask you, sir, what paragraph are you reading from
12 Q. The third paragraph, the operative zone of Southeastern
13 Herzegovina, report from Mostar. It's the penultimate page in the
14 Croatian version that's probably the case in the English version too, I'll
15 try and find it, item 3, the penultimate page in the English version,
16 Southeastern Herzegovina report from Mostar. At 1900 hours. It's the
17 third page in the English version. And to the end of the page. It's very
19 My question is as follows, sir: While you were down in the area,
20 and in Mostar, et cetera, did you hear from ABiH or HVO commanders or did
21 you personally see that the Republika Srpska artillery from Konjic and to
22 the south to Stolac regularly shelled the front lines inhabited
23 settlements, Mostar, both the eastern and western part of Mostar, probably
24 because of the battlefield which was close to Eastern Mostar was subjected
25 to more intense shelling but were you familiar with the regular shelling
1 of the Republika Srpska army during your stay in the area?
2 A. I think I referred to it yesterday in my testimony and I said I
3 experienced it on the road to Stolac on a number of occasions.
4 Q. Thank you. Here is another document 3D 01096, the 3rd of March
5 1993. It's the following document in my binder, the 3rd of March, it's a
6 report of a similar kind. Have a look at item 3, the operative zone of
7 Southeastern Herzegovina. We'll go through it rapidly. At 1500 hours,
8 two tank shells were fired on Hum at 1545 the Chetniks opened fire on a
9 convoy that was under UNPROFOR's court. While I was crossing the HC
10 bridge, they used 40 millimetre cannon and UNPROFOR responded to the
11 Chetnik fire and opened fire on them and so on and so forth.
12 You told me that you were also shelled. Can you confirm my
13 hypothesis that the Serbian artillery regularly shelled the Mostar area,
14 the eastern and western part of Mostar, the eastern a little more and to
15 the south and north of Mostar as well; is that correct? Was that the case
16 while you were down there in the area?
17 A. Sir, yes, what you've said is absolutely right and you did also
18 say that there was obviously more shelling in East Mostar than
19 West Mostar.
20 Q. Very well. Thank you. Could the usher please place another map
21 on the ELMO? We will now be dealing with Stolac. It's a small map of a
22 wider area. Have a look at it, sir, and while you're looking at the map
23 I'll just put a few questions to you.
24 The Kostana hospital that you visited regularly, do you know that
25 the patients in that hospital or most of the patients had been there prior
1 to the beginning of the conflict? These were patients who were very ill,
2 they had very severe bone diseases. Were you aware of the fact?
3 A. I was, sir. I was also aware that it was actually a refuge centre
4 also in addition to being a hospital.
5 Q. Did you know that the wounded who were treated by Dr. Kapic were
6 most frequently sent on in the direction of Split and Metkovic and
7 patients with bone diseases remained there so the wounded who were
8 supposed to be operated on went towards Split and Metkovic? Is that
9 correct or not?
10 A. I think that's partially correct, sir, yes.
11 Q. Is it correct to say that Metkovic and Split are in the Republic
12 of Croatia?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Do you know that the hospital in Metkovic was a military hospital
15 that belonged to the Croatian army?
16 A. I actually visited it in my time there.
17 Q. Do you know that all those wounded, all the patients in the
18 Kostana hospital up until the end of February 1992, were taken out of that
19 hospital, taken away from the hospital -- sir, up until the end of
20 February 1993, do you know that all the hospitals from the Kostana
21 hospital were taken to the Republic of Croatia? Do you know that towards
22 the end of February, there were no longer any patients with a severe bone
23 diseases in that hospital? They were all taken to the Republic of
25 A. There were people in that hospital post-February 1993.
1 Q. Sir, look, I'm not saying that wasn't the case, but the first
2 group of the wounded [indiscernible] was constantly being shelled and ABiH
3 soldiers and Croatian soldiers were there but after, in March 1993, did
4 you see a single patient with a bone disease? I'm not referring to the
5 wounded who had gone to the hospital.
6 MR. STRINGER: Objection, Mr. President. I object to the
7 question. It's irrelevant.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Praljak, what's the
9 relevance of this question? What are you trying to establish, to prove?
10 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] First of all, I want to
11 demonstrate that after February 1993, it became a military hospital for
12 the first echelon, as they say, for the wounded, for the civilians and for
13 the soldiers, and then secondly I want to show that the Republic of
14 Croatia and HVO doctors found the resources to move these patients who
15 were immobile. They had been transported to Croatia and they were taken
16 care of there. So the relevance of the question is that the leadership of
17 the Republic of Croatia and that includes us, who have been accused of a
18 joint criminal enterprise, well that would mean that these patients over
19 which there were 100 would have been left there, which is what the Serbs
20 did when they were there. So my question is relevant. It's very simple.
21 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if I may I apologise
22 to General Praljak, since my colleague, Mr. Kovacic, was absent maybe I
23 could say why this is relevant. In the course of the
24 examination-in-chief, the Prosecution put a series of questions to the
25 witness about the Kostana hospital. The witness mentioned the difficult
1 situation in the hospital, he mentioned the fact that there was no
2 electricity or water. And the situation was described as if the HVO was
3 responsible for that situation. It was as if the HVO had prevented food
4 and medicine from being provided, and other necessities for the hospital.
5 So I think it's very important to clarify how in fact this hospital
6 functioned. Thank you very much.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, Mr. Praljak has
8 explained what he believed the situation was like in the hospital,
9 invalids had been sent to Croatia and in February this hospital had been
10 transformed into a military or wartime hospital. What do you say about
11 this? Is that true, false, you don't know, what would you say?
12 THE WITNESS: I don't agree with that assessment, Your Honour.
13 That's not the picture that I found on the ground.
14 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Could you tell me when did you visit the hospital in March, either
16 you yourself or someone from your team in 1993?
17 A. I would -- I left the mission area in the 22nd of March and I
18 cannot be definite about the date but I would have visited that hospital
19 within one week of leaving on the -- seven to 10 days before I left on the
20 22nd of March.
21 Q. Thank you. Now for my next question. Have a look at the map that
22 you have. I've marked it. Let's try and establish some facts first of
23 all. Do you agree that under number 1 you can see Stolac; number 2
24 Mostar; number 3, Siroki Brijeg; number 4, Posusje; number 5, Jablanica;
25 number 7 Uskoplje, Gornji Vakuf -- no I apologise, Rama; 8, Gornji Vakuf;
1 9, Bugojno; 6, Konjic; and H1, marks the Kostana hospital; H2 -- no, H2 is
2 the hospital in Domanovici. So, have these places that I have mentioned
3 been correctly marked on this map?
4 A. Correct.
5 Q. Do you know that in Domanovici, marked with the letter D, was a
6 fairly large hospital for patients with a serious mental illnesses,
7 schizophrenia, et cetera? Do you know there was a very big hospital of
8 that kind at that location?
9 A. I was aware of that, sir, yes.
10 Q. Do you know that at the beginning of your arrival, thanks to
11 Dr. Sandrk, Gveric, many of those patients had been transferred from that
12 hospital and thanks to humanitarian organisations from Italy, most of them
13 were provided with accommodation there? Do you know that all these
14 patients were moved and placed in good institutions, partly in Croatia,
15 but mostly in Italy? And in Mostar.
16 A. Most of what patients, sir, are we referring to?
17 Q. I'm referring to the patients from Domanovici, the patients who
18 were in that hospital that had been there nor a long time, they were
19 patients from the entire territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina, they had
20 incurable mental illnesses, paranoia, schizophrenia, these people were
21 quite incapable of taking care of themselves, and these people were people
22 who belonged to various nations, they were people of various religious
23 faiths, et cetera?
24 A. I was not aware of that, sir, no.
25 Q. Very well. Thank you. If you take the marker, could you trace
1 the route you used to go to Gornji Vakuf and to Uskoplje, Mostar,
2 Jablanica, Rama, Uskoplje, can you show me the route? Could you use a
3 marker of some kind?
4 A. [Marks]
5 Q. Obviously, you used two routes towards Jablanica and further up
6 and then you used the other route through the Vran mountain. Did you know
7 that this route was called the route of salvation?
8 A. I was aware of that, sir, yes.
9 Q. I have one more question. Do you know that the Republic of
10 Croatia at the time that you were in the area provided hospitals in Mostar
11 with surgical teams, orthopaedists, surgeons for internal bleeding, et
12 cetera, they often went there to provide assistance because there were a
13 lot of wounded, they went to Mostar from Croatia, had you experienced such
14 a thing there? Did you meet those people?
15 A. I did not, sir, no.
16 Q. Since you have said that you've been a professional soldier for 32
17 years, could you use this map to trace approximately the positions of the
18 Republika Srpska army in Stolac and towards Mostar and to the north
19 towards Konjic and could you show where the HVO positions and where the
20 ABiH positions were, if you can, do so, if not, say so and we'll just move
22 A. Absolutely not, sir.
23 Q. Very well. Thank you. Could you please sign the map?
24 A. [Marks]
25 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] And could we have an IC
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar?
3 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, the document marked by the witness
4 will be given Exhibit number IC 697. Thank you, Your Honour.
5 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Could we place this map on
6 the Elmo, too and it would be good if we could see this part that has been
7 marked, yes, thank you.
8 Q. We'll now deal with the Uskoplje and Gornji Vakuf area. I have a
9 map here and I have marked certain things of importance on the map. In
10 the course of your examination-in-chief, you said that in December 1992 --
11 correction in November, you visited Uskoplje and Gornji Vakuf and you went
12 through the Jablanica-Uskoplje route and you said that at the time the
13 artillery in Makljen was facing Prozor. Do you remember that?
14 A. I do, sir, yes.
15 Q. Thank you. And you said on that occasion that you saw from
16 Makljen, that you saw Gornji Vakuf from Makljen and you saw the artillery
17 shelling there?
18 A. What I actually said was that I went to some key terrain to get a
19 view of Gornji Vakuf in the distance.
20 Q. Sir, I've marked some elevations here, from Makljen towards
21 Gornji Vakuf, from Makljen to Gornji Vakuf. I've encircled these
22 elevations and I want to show you the following. The height of these
23 elevations, as they continue towards Gornji Vakuf, elevation 13 is 1176
24 metres; 14, 1114 metres; Elevation 12 - we are going in towards Vakuf -
25 1094 metres; elevation 10, 1261 metres; 11, 1228 metres, it's higher than
1 the other ones; elevation 8, 1072; 9, 1197 metres; elevation 7, 1121
2 metres; elevation 6, 1007 metres; elevation 5, 1025 metres; elevation 4,
3 Mackovac, 991 metres; elevation 1, 876 metres; and the elevation above the
4 town of Vakuf itself, above the repeater, is 785 metres. In Vakuf, marked
5 with number 3, 654 metres. Vakuf is at a height of 654 metres. And
6 elevation 2 is 785 metres.
7 It's just above the previous one.
8 Sir, do you see this road towards Vakuf and does it go through the
9 valley between the mountains? Does this route go through the valley? So
10 when you used this road to go from Makljen to Uskoplje to the left or the
11 right of you was anything visible apart from the forests? I think even
12 the Judges have taken that route. But have a look at the map.
13 What I'm telling you is that correct, when you take this route to
14 Vakuf, is it correct to say that there is nothing you can see apart from
15 the forest to the left and to the right of the road? Is that correct?
16 A. You will be aware, as I explained to you, the majority of times I
17 drove into Gornji Vakuf was in the back of a Warrior armoured car.
18 Q. [Overlapping speakers] Sir, please, whether you say I was at the
19 rear, I didn't have binoculars, I was sleeping, et cetera, well, this is
20 all taking up my time and it's of no use to us. When you went down that
21 road, did you see anything to the left or the right, yes, no, I can't
23 MR. STRINGER: Objection, Mr. President, the comment about I was
24 sleeping? That wasn't said by the witness. And it's insulting to suggest
25 that the witness was sleeping in the back of an APC when he was heading up
1 to Gornji Vakuf to carry out his mission.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
3 MR. KOVACIC: I don't think any insult was meant, it was
4 figurative, like the classical reason why one if not seeing what one
5 should see, while travelling. I mean, if that is insulting we must be
6 very, very careful because that's the second time.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Commandant, we have a map, and
8 various elevations have been marked on the map, and we see that
9 Gornji Vakuf is at an altitude of 600 or 700 metres and the point of
10 departure from Makljen, which is where you were is further up, is higher
11 up. But General Praljak says that when you look at all these elevations
12 that have been numbered, well, he says that all these elevations are at an
13 altitude of over a thousand metres. Now we are dealing with a very
14 military issue. He says from the position where you were supposed to be,
15 it's impossible to see Gornji Vakuf. That's his thesis. I wasn't there.
16 Unless it's necessary for the Chamber to go there to see this for
17 themselves. So what do you have to tell us? Are you sure of what you are
18 saying or do you have any doubts.
19 THE WITNESS: No, sir. I'm 100 per cent positive in what I'm
20 saying and I also said in the testimony the other day that I only saw a
21 small part of Gornji Vakuf. I didn't say I saw the whole town of
22 Gornji Vakuf. I said I had to find some key ground to -- and I did,
23 locate it, so I could see a part of Gornji Vakuf.
24 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Yes, Mr. Praljak, what I do not understand about
25 your question, whether from the road one can see anything, because the
1 witness has never spoken of something he has seen from the road but upon a
2 question he has expressly said that at one point, the car stopped and he
3 walked to a place from where he could see something. So what is the
4 interest of knowing whether he saw something from a place where he never
5 pretended that he saw something?
6 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, that's correct.
7 I first wanted to establish what one could see from the road, and my
8 assumption is that from the road and right up until the entrance to
9 Gornji Vakuf it's not possible to see anything. That was my first
10 question. That's what I wanted to clarify. And the second question
11 concerned what Judge Antonetti said, elevations from Makljen up to the one
12 above Vakuf, at a higher altitude than Makljen itself, elevation 11 and 7,
13 for example, so when you take the route -- road, you can't see anything,
14 when you set off from Gornji Vakuf, right up until elevation 1 where you
15 can -- from where you can see the left part of Vakuf and it's only from
16 elevation 2 right above Vakuf that you can see the town in the valley.
17 It's possible to see from elevation 1 Bistrica, et cetera, but you can't
18 see Vakuf itself. Anyone who knows anything about maps can see this
19 especially since there is a forest there. So you can't see anything from
20 any of the elevations apart from the ones I have mentioned, you can't see
21 anything from the road either and that's what I'm claiming. I'm trying to
22 establish what could be seen without binoculars, to the left and to the
24 Q. Sir, can you tell me, do you have a rough recollection of the
25 position from which it was possible for you to see something?
1 A. I think I already said in my previous testimony I stopped at a
2 number of locations and eventually found an area that I could observe
3 Gornji Vakuf but also remember that I also said there was shelling going
4 on so I wasn't hanging around the area but I saw Gornji Vakuf as I said, a
5 part of it, sufficient to see shelling and leave.
6 Q. Thank you. Tell me, please, you have now point X and point Y on
7 the map. What is the distance with this scale on the map between X and Y?
8 The scale is one to 50.000. How many kilometres is equivalent to one
9 centimetre on this map when the scale is one to 50.000?
10 A. I think are we talking about 25 kilometres?
11 Q. No, sir. One centimetre on the map, how many metres is equivalent
12 to one centimetre on the map, given the scale of the map?
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You want to lend him your ruler.
14 MR. STRINGER: If he wants it. [Speakers overlapping]
15 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Mr. Prosecutor, let us first
16 find out what is the equivalent of one centimetre? I too have a ruler.
17 One centimetre on the map is equal to how many kilometres in reality? If
18 the scale is one to 50.000.
19 A. One centimetre equals 500 metres.
20 Q. So we have 21 centimetres, you can check if you like and that is
21 equal to ten and a half kilometres. You said that you didn't have
22 binoculars, that you saw shelling, so I won't dwell on the point any
23 further. What we have heard we have heard. One further point, did you
24 see the shelling in November 1992 or on the 18th of January, when you were
25 in an UNPROFOR armoured vehicle going to Gornji Vakuf?
1 A. I already said I saw shelling in November.
2 Q. Very well. Thank you. On this map, I have also drawn A and B.
3 Can you see that?
4 A. Yes, sir.
5 Q. Do you know where the road marked with a B leads to?
6 A. I presume it goes to Bugojno.
7 Q. True. What about the road marked with an A? Do you know where it
9 A. I was never -- I was never on it.
10 Q. Very well. My question regarding these two roads has been
11 prompted by your statement that Gornji Vakuf at the time of the conflict
12 was an isolated town, that the Muslims were isolated towards the north.
13 Since you never took road A, my next question would be as follows: Can
14 you draw on this map at the time you were there where the positions of the
15 ABiH were and where were the positions of the HVO at the time of the
16 conflict, when you were touring the area, could you roughly indicate where
17 the positions of the two parties were? It was a long time ago. If you
18 can't, we'll move on.
19 A. No, I'm afraid, I cannot.
20 Q. Very well. Thank you. Can you show us in what direction were the
21 front lines which were jointly held before by the HVO and the ABiH towards
22 the Serbs or rather where were the front lines with the Serbs?
23 A. I'm not aware of that.
24 Q. Can you show us on this map the separation lines within the town
25 of Vakuf itself? Which part of the town of Vakuf, during the conflict,
1 were held -- was held by the ABiH and what part by the HVO forces?
2 A. I cannot show you.
3 Q. Thank you. When you went there, did you ask yourself why the
4 conflict had broken out between the ABiH and the HVO in Gornji Vakuf?
5 What was the reason for this limited conflict?
6 A. I think I've already said in testimony that my priority in
7 Gornji Vakuf was to ensure a cease-fire was brought into effect and held.
8 The reasons for the conflict at that stage did not concern me.
9 Q. Thank you. I understand.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Commandant, we are turning
11 around a little bit in circles. General Praljak is asking you what were
12 the reasons for the conflicts between the ABiH and the hover in
13 Gornji Vakuf. Your answer is that your concern was to make the cease-fire
14 effective. That's fine. But whether one is a military man, one must ask
15 oneself why the conflict had broken out in the first place. So that is
16 the question that has been put to you. Even though you were focusing on
17 the cease-fire, did you try to find out why the conflict had broken out,
18 who started it, and why?
19 THE WITNESS: It was my opinion that this conflicts was started by
20 the HVO and when we went, as I think I've mentioned in the -- my previous
21 testimony, when we sat down to negotiate a cease-fire, the Armija, Muslim
22 side, were extremely anxious to obtain a cease-fire and the HVO on the
23 other side most definitely were not. So I think that would point to where
24 the conflict started.
25 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm not quite sure that
1 the record is correct. I'm afraid that I don't understand whether this
2 was the witness's opinion or whether it was a fact.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Is that your opinion or is it a
5 THE WITNESS: That is my professional military opinion.
6 MR. KOVACIC: Then probably additional question to that would be
7 appropriate. Sir, have you found out any facts on base which you confirm
8 that of concrete, direct facts, or is this just general observation?
9 MR. STRINGER: I'm going to object to cross-examination by tag
10 team is what we would call it where I come from. This cross-examination
11 is being conducted by the accused and I'm opposed to the passing of the
12 witness back and forth between the accused and his counsel.
13 MR. KARNAVAS: Mr. President, I thought we were here to gets to
14 the truth. Why is the Prosecution always afraid of the truth?
15 MR. STRINGER: I'm not afraid of the truth, Mr. President. It's
16 the procedure. I raised procedure earlier, and yes, we are all
17 professionals and we can handle one document but it's the procedure and
18 I'm concerned about the procedure being altered.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer, regarding
20 procedure, you're right. But if the Defence were to implement the
21 procedure very strictly, what would happen? There would be Mr. Kovacic,
22 who would write down on a piece of paper a message to Mr. Praljak to ask
23 him to put a certain question. So that would be a waste of time because
24 as Mr. Karnavas has said so well, we are here to find the truth. Let us
25 try and do so. It is already five to 4.00, unfortunately time flies and
1 we have to have a break now. Normally, Mr. Praljak, my understanding is
2 that your time has run out. How much more time do you need? How many
3 more questions do you have? Five minutes? You're showing us seven
4 fingers, so seven fingers so we will resume in 20 minutes and you'll have
5 seven minutes.
6 --- Recess taken at 3.56 p.m.
7 --- On resuming at 4.16 p.m.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed. Before
9 giving the floor to Mr. Praljak, Mr. Stringer, do you have any news about
10 our witness for Monday.
11 MR. STRINGER: I looked for Mr. Scott and couldn't find him. He
12 might be running around trying to find a witness for next week.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But we need to know that very
15 MR. STRINGER: We are attempting to communicate by e-mail as well
16 during the course of the proceedings. And if I'm -- we will obviously
17 inform the Trial Chamber and the parties as soon as we have something
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Mr. Praljak --
20 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, let's not forget the
21 last map, please.
22 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Thank you.
23 Q. Mr. Lane, if we may cover a couple of questions quickly. While
24 you were in Gornji Vakuf and working on the implementation of the signed
25 cease-fire, was the basic problem raised by the HVO to cover up the
1 trenches that the BiH army had dug at all the elevations around Vakuf?
2 A. I've already said in testimony that the problem I had was
3 Colonel Siljeg's absence from the signing ceremony.
4 Q. Mr. Lane, will you please listen to my question? According to
5 what I know, the HVO had two basic demands for the implementation of the
6 cease-fire, and those were to fill in the trenches which the army had done
7 on the elevations around Gornji Vakuf, and the departure of the Jajce
8 Brigade from Gornji Vakuf. Do you remember that those were the
9 preconditions set by the HVO?
10 A. They were not the main preconditions set by the HVO.
11 Q. Very well. Tell me the following. The names Abdulah Topcic,
12 Fahrudin Agic and Prijic Hanefija known as Paraga, do these names ring a
13 bell at all? Have you heard of those names?
14 A. I have, yes, sir, yes, two of them, two of them, two of them.
15 Q. Have you heard what Prijic Hanefija, the commander of the military
16 police of the BiH army, did in Gornji Vakuf? Do you know what his
17 position was?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Thank you. Will you please sign the map now and can I have an IC
20 number for this map?
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] A number, Mr. Registrar, please.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour the map just signed by the witness
23 shall be given Exhibit number IC 698. Thank you, Your Honour.
24 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, to correct the record
25 because there may be difficulties later, on page 42, line 12, it says the
1 departure of identities, the question was the departure of the Jajce
2 Brigade, [In English] Meaning brigade from Jajac -- from Jajce, sorry.
3 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Very well. Let me show you one more map, please. There are
5 copies for Their Honours, too. And a map for the witness. Until the map
6 is distributed, may I ask you something? One more thing about Posusje and
7 that will bring to an end my cross-examination. As you travelled along
8 Herceg-Bosna, did you see a single factory -- you have the map behind you
9 that's the map -- did you see in the area a single factory that was
10 operating or producing anything at all, spare parts, or manufacturing
11 anything? Did you see an oil refinery, a medicines factory, while you
12 were there, during your tour of duty, did you see anything functioning, a
14 A. I can't honestly answer whether I saw a factory functioning, but I
15 saw normal life functioning in restaurants and places like that.
16 Q. So look at this map. It is a map of Herzegovina. So that we can
17 see the various elevations on it. I have marked Posusje on it, the road
18 of salvation, and is this one of the routes that you used to reach
19 Gornji Vakuf? Rama is also marked.
20 A. It appears to be, yes, yes.
21 Q. Could you please use a marker to mark the route from Ploce,
22 Capljina, Mostar, Jablanica, this road that you, among others, took to
23 reach Gornji Vakuf, could you mark it? My question is did this route go
24 along the Neretva River valley? It goes along the river valley, Metkovic,
25 Capljina, Mostar, Jablanica and then to the left.
1 A. Yes. It goes along the river valley, yes.
2 Q. Was this the main road passing through East Mostar used by the
3 UNHCR convoys to carry supplies from the port of Ploce up to
4 Central Bosnia?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Posusje and what you saw in Posusje, do you know that in 1992
7 after the attack that is a little before your arrival and during your stay
8 through this refugee centre, more than 100.000 refugees passed through
9 this centre, some staying for shorter periods, others for longer periods,
10 before they travelled on to the Republic of Croatia? Are you aware of
11 that? That more than 100.000 refugees using the road of salvation first
12 of all a large number of Muslims afterwards both Croats and Muslims, they
13 passed through this centre all ethnicities, that is Muslims and Croats,
14 before they were taken in by the Republic of Croatia? Are you aware of
16 A. Into Posusje?
17 Q. Yes.
18 A. And sorry, when? What period of time?
19 Q. In a period starting from April 1992 and it went on until you left
20 the area. So in the period from April 1992 until March 1993, that using
21 this road of salvation, more than 100.000 people came to Posusje, stayed
22 there for a while, both Bosniaks and Croats, before going on to Croatia?
23 A. That would not be my experience.
24 Q. So you didn't talk to the person who was in charge of this refugee
25 centre or camp? You don't know his name and you never spoke to him?
1 A. I actually did speak to the relevant authorities in the camp on a
2 number of occasions.
3 Q. When Jajce was occupied or captured by the army of Republika
4 Srpska, do you know how many Croats took this route? You were already
5 there then. And reached the refugee centre in Posusje? How many Croats
6 from Jajce passed through this refugee centre? Are you aware of the
8 A. I'm not.
9 Q. Do you know that the word Posusje, the etymology of the word,
10 means something dry, dried, without water? In other words, that in this
11 town, until 1995, there was a very small water supply system and that in
12 1992 and in 1993, water had to be brought there mostly by tanks?
13 Cisterns, water tanks?
14 A. I was very clear in what I said about Posusje yesterday. I
15 targeted humanitarian aid where it was and how it could be brought to
16 Posusje and I failed to get that agreed with certain people.
17 Q. Sir, your task was to observe and to care about humanitarian aid
18 and there were tens and thousands of people who passed through there, as
19 you said yesterday. I'm asking do you know that at the time Posusje was a
20 town without water and that water had to be brought there in water tanks,
21 in 1992 and during your tour of duty? Do you know that or not?
22 A. Sir, if you're telling me that's the truth, I believe you.
23 MR. KARNAVAS: Mr. President, if I may interject at this point
24 because I sense some tension here. General Praljak is asking a very
25 legitimate question because the assertion by the gentleman based on his
1 observation was whether there were some omissions or failures on the part
2 of certain people to take care of certain other people. Now, the question
3 is very legitimate. It calls for a yes or no. Either he knew or he
4 doesn't know. First he tells us what his mission was. Which he's told us
5 on direct, he told us on cross, he's told us a hundred times; we know it.
6 Now he's just eating up time.
7 THE WITNESS: Sorry, counsel, I have answered the question.
8 MR. KARNAVAS: Excuse me, let me finish my submission and you can
9 say what you want. He was asked concretely he had to be asked a second
10 time. I would ask the Trial Chamber to direct the witness to be
11 forthright and forthcoming with General Praljak and anyone else who asks a
12 question. He can certainly say directly what the answer is and then if he
13 wishes to explain, other than tell us what he's already told us a hundred
14 times, you know, I think you need to instruct the witness, Mr. President.
15 It's getting tiresome sitting here.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Commandant, you should answer
17 the question when the question requires a yes, no, I don't know, answer,
18 if there is a question that requires a comment on your part, you should
19 then provide that additional information. Mr. Praljak, please continue.
20 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Witness, please --
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Praljak, it's necessary to
23 conclude now.
24 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Yes, I just have another two
1 Q. Could you answer my question? Do you know, did you know that
2 Posusje means a place without water? If you look at the word's etymology,
3 yes or no?
4 A. No, no, sir, I did not know that.
5 Q. Were you aware of the fact that in 1992 and 1993 water tanks had
6 to be used to deliver water to Posusje and that was the case right up
7 until 1995, but we're not interested in that. Were you aware of that
9 A. I was aware there was a shortage of water, yes, sir.
10 Q. Did you know what the population of Posusje was at the time?
11 A. No, sir.
12 Q. And I have one last question to put to you: If I told you by
13 paraphrasing a book by Kundera, the title of which is "the Unbearable
14 Lightness of Being", that you not just you but because of the unbearable
15 lightness of drawing conclusions contributed to the state of confusion?
16 You did not realise how much energy --
17 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Is this a question? I think you are giving moral
18 evaluation to the witness.
19 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] No, Judge Trechsel, I'm just
20 asking the witness a question given the overall situation at the time the
21 witness was in the area, given the number of inhabitants, the water
22 problems, et cetera, was the witness aware at that time of the way in
23 which one had to organise everything for 100.000 refugees? This is my
24 last question.
25 Q. Do you know how many problems there were? Do you know how many
1 resources had been allocated for the people who were there?
2 A. To answer your question directly, do I know, the answer is no.
3 Q. Do you know that because of the fact that there were refugees in--
4 do you know that because of the fact that refugees were in Posusje, school
5 hadn't started, not just in Posusje but in other villages too because
6 refugees were all over the place, this is my last question but were you
7 aware of that fact?
8 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, Mr. President, I'm not opposed to
9 General Praljak having additional time. At this stage, I can tell the
10 Trial Chamber that I would like to reserve 30 minutes for redirect and
11 that, you know, beyond that the Trial Chamber as between General Praljak
12 and Ms. Alaburic can allocate the time as it sees fit.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Please answer the
14 question about the start of the school time period in Posusje. Can you
15 answer that question.
16 THE WITNESS: I was aware of it. Yes.
17 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Lane for
18 answering my questions. Thank you, Your Honours for granting me
19 additional time.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Praljak, you've provided us
21 with two maps. If you could give us two other maps that would be very
22 useful, because this map is very revealing. We can locate the towns, the
23 villages, the routes, the villages and the forests of Herzegovina. So it
24 would be very useful if you could provide us with two additional maps so
25 that each judge could have a -- one map. That's the Chamber's request.
1 And perhaps Mr. Stringer would appreciate a map too.
2 MR. STRINGER: We would like the map also, Mr. President. We
3 would like to have a copy if that could be arranged.
4 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have another
5 one here for you. I'll bring a second one. And I'll provide the
6 Prosecutor with a copy of the map too. I haven't brought additional ones
7 with me.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We'll give this one to
9 Mr. Stringer since the Judges already have two, and you will bring an
10 additional one.
11 Very well. Would you like an IC number for this? Mr. Praljak and
12 a signature too, could we have a number, please.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour, the document just marked by the
14 witness shall be given IC number 699. Thank you, Your Honour.
15 MR. KOVACIC: Your Honours, in order not to establish a precedent
16 we usually receive an electronic version of a map from the Prosecution.
17 The Prosecution will get an electronic version of the map for when the
18 Registry has scanned it. It's not my responsibility for printing them
19 out. We had difficulty in obtaining these. But this is Mr. Praljak's
20 goodwill to provide the Prosecution and the judges with these copies but I
21 wouldn't like to establish a precedent here.
22 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] This is something that I'm
23 providing you with. We have a slight disagreement, my counsel and myself.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Ms. Alaburic, you
25 have the floor for an hour now.
1 MS ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, dear colleagues, good
3 Cross-examination by Ms. Alaburic:
4 Q. [Interpretation] Good day, Witness. My name is Vesna Alaburic, I'm
5 a lawyer from Zagreb and I'm defending General Milivoj Petkovic in these
6 proceedings. I'd like to spend the first ten minutes clarifying certain
7 details that relate to the EC mission because I believe that there are
8 certain discrepancies between your testimony and the testimony of your
9 colleague, Christopher Beese, and we examined your colleague for a
10 five-day period. First of all, allow me to summarise what I believe was
11 relevant in your testimony. With regard to the refugees in Posusje, you
12 told us that you didn't know who they were, where they were from, why they
13 had taken refuge, you said that you were only concerned about how to help
14 them. Isn't that correct?
15 A. I actually said I did know who they were. You're right, I didn't
16 know where they came from, and you're right, my objective was to help.
17 Q. I understood your testimony differently. I thought you had said
18 you didn't even know who they were. Can you tell us which towns these
19 refugees had come from?
20 A. No, I'm sorry, what I meant was I thought I said that the people
21 were from Muslim background. I don't know what town they came from.
22 Q. At the time, did you see both Croatian and Muslim refugees in
23 Posusje or did you only visit Muslim refugees there?
24 A. All I saw at the time were Muslim refugees.
25 Q. Could you tell me who told you that they were Muslims alone?
1 A. Well, through my own eyes having walked through the building
2 itself, and spoken to the administrators of Posusje.
3 Q. Unfortunately I don't have to time to go into that but usually we
4 don't believe that it's possible to determine whether someone is a Muslim
5 a Croat or a Serb in that area just by seeing them. We believe that other
6 criteria have to be used but let's move on to another subject. In the
7 course of your examination-in-chief, and when answering a question put to
8 you by Mr. Karnavas, you said that you weren't familiar with the
9 organisation of the leadership of the government in Herceg-Bosna; is that
11 A. [Microphone not activated]
12 Q. You also said that you weren't familiar with the contents of the
13 Vance-Owen Peace Plan; is that correct?
14 A. Absolutely, yes.
15 Q. And today you told us that you weren't interested in the reasons
16 for the conflict in Gornji Vakuf. You were only interested in the
17 implementation of the cease-fire; is that correct?
18 A. Right.
19 Q. Very well. Now I'll tell you what your colleague,
20 Christopher Beese, said about the same things more or less and for the
21 sake of the transcript, I'll refer to the pages of the transcript where
22 Mr. Beese's testimony can be found. He said that the task of the European
23 monitors was first of all to monitor the events in the territory of the
24 former Yugoslavia, secondly to report on those events, and thirdly, to
25 analyse the events, in order to gain a better understanding of the
1 situation and in order to be able to reach good decisions on the conflict.
2 And the reports and the analysis of the European monitors were
3 forwarded to, first of all, the Presidency of the European Community, and
4 secondly, to the ministers of foreign affairs of the member states of the
5 European Community, thirdly, to the ministers of foreign affairs of
6 members of the OSS, because the European monitors cooperated with that
7 organisation. And fourthly, to those involved in peace negotiations in
8 Geneva, initially Vance and Owen and subsequently to Mr. Stoltenberg. The
9 pages of the transcript, 3058. This is where this testimony can be found.
10 3062, and 3063.
11 Mr. Lane, could you confirm the testimony of your colleague,
12 Mr. Beese? Was that actually the EC mission or in your opinion was the
13 mission of a different nature?
14 A. No, no. There is nothing in that that I would disagree with.
15 Q. As far as humanitarian aid is concerned, he said that the only
16 task of the European monitors was to monitor the convoys and the passage
17 of humanitarian aid. This is on page 3070 of the transcript. And he said
18 that obtaining and distributing humanitarian aid was the responsibility of
19 other organisations, for example, the UNHCR, the Red Cross, the Merhamet
20 charity, Caritas and so on and so forth. Would you agree with this
21 testimony given by Mr. Beese as well?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. He also told us that the European monitors in the area of the
24 former Yugoslavia played a significant role when it came to implementing
25 the Vance-Owen peace plan and he said that in that regard, they had a
1 twofold task, to interpret the plan for the benefit of the local
2 authorities in the field, to enable them to have a better understanding of
3 the plan, and secondly to give instructions to the local authorities as to
4 what they should do in order to prepare for the implementation of the
5 Vance-Owen peace plan. This testimony can be found on pages 3237 and
6 pages 3238 of the transcript.
7 Mr. Lane, would you also agree with this claim made by Mr. Beese?
8 A. Yes. Mr. Beese took over control of Grude on the 23rd of March,
9 when I left the mission area, and that was his focus, that was his mission
10 at that stage. Yes, I would agree with that, yeah.
11 Q. If I can just clarify what Mr. Beese said, what he said also
12 related to January and February because he was also referring to the
13 events in Gornji Vakuf in January 1993. And in February, and the
14 following months. Could we agree that this claim with regard to the
15 Vance-Owen plan concerns the obligation of the European monitors in 1993
16 in January and February 1993?
17 A. I've already said that I was involved deeply, as you're aware, in
18 the cease-fire arrangements and subsequent events in Gornji Vakuf. The
19 Vance-Owen Plan was, as I said at the time, being dealt with by
20 Mr. Bousseau and Mr. Beese, by the way, who arrived later in the area
21 stayed in Siroki Brijeg and dealt directly with Mr. Bousseau.
22 Q. Mr. Lane, I'd now like to present you with a conclusion. Please
23 listen to me carefully. Given what I know and in the light of the
24 testimony of other witnesses, in order to carry out the tasks that the
25 European monitors had, it was necessary to have the following. Well, they
1 had to have knowledge of how the government functioned in various areas,
2 they had to know what the rules of the systems were in various areas of
3 the former Yugoslavia, they had to know about events by obtaining
4 information from various sources, and they also had to have information
5 from the parties in the conflict, fourthly they had to be familiar with
6 the Vance-Owen peace plan and they had to be familiar with the positions
7 of the parties to the conflict with regard to the aforementioned peace
8 plan and fifthly they had to be familiar with the political objectives of
9 the parties in the conflict. Would you agree with me?
10 A. From my functions and mission area, I do not agree with that
12 Q. These five elements have been enumerated very clearly. Could you
13 tell me whether you disagree with all of them or do you agree with some of
14 these claims?
15 A. No. I obviously don't disagree with all, but I do not agree with
16 some of them.
17 Q. Please, could you tell me which claims you disagree with?
18 A. It was not necessary at various times in my service to know all
19 the parties in the conflict, to be familiar with the Vance-Owen plan, at
20 the time I was there now I'm talking about, at that time.
21 Q. Could we agree that as of January 1993, you, as a European
22 monitor, should have been familiar with the contents of the Vance-Owen
23 Plan and you should have been familiar with the positions of the parties
24 to the conflict with regard to that plan? You should have known whether
25 someone had signed it, whether someone had objected to it, why they had
1 objected to it?
2 A. No, I don't agree with you at all on that.
3 Q. Very well, very well. We can move on. Mr. Lane, given that you
4 are a professional soldier who has been involved in missions in other
5 countries, could you tell me the following? In the missions you were
6 involved in in the Near East or in Afghanistan, was it possible for you to
7 cross the front lines in your vehicle without hindrance? Could you visit
8 various features or military units or was it not possible for you to do
9 this in an absolutely free manner?
10 A. That question is so huge that there is just no way I can give an
11 answer. How can I compare the war in the Middle East with Afghanistan?
12 How can one compare? They are completely different wars. I mean the
13 question itself doesn't make any sense.
14 Q. Were you ever in an area, in a conflict area, in which the
15 movement of vehicles and monitors wasn't subject to a certain amount of
17 A. The answer is I have been in areas where they were not subject to
18 control, yes.
19 Q. Could you tell us when and where?
20 A. Sorry, 1988, 1994, in Lebanon.
21 Q. And nowhere else and never again?
22 A. No. Actually not quite true. In Afghanistan, I was in a number
23 of areas where also there was no control, where you could move freely.
24 Q. We are talking about conflict areas. Not about areas in which
25 there weren't any conflicts raging.
1 A. No. Let me be very clear here. I travelled freely in areas where
2 there was conflict in both Lebanon and Afghanistan.
3 Q. Mr. Lane, tell me whether you distinguish between the idea of
4 restriction of movement and control over movement?
5 A. I don't understand the --
6 Q. Do you make a distinction between these two concepts? Do you make
7 a distinction between movement that is restricted and that means that you
8 are prohibited from having access to certain zones, do you distinguish
9 this from the control of movement, which involves certain formalities,
10 obtaining certain permits, establishing check-points, but by passing
11 through those check-points or by obtaining the necessary documents it's
12 possible for you to visit the territory that you want to visit. So do you
13 make a distinction between these two concepts?
14 A. Well, to answer your question the way you have it -- the way --
15 Q. Could you just tell me whether you make a distinction between
16 these two concepts or not?
17 A. There is a distinction obviously, yes.
18 Q. Very well. At the time that you were in the area, did the HVO
19 ever say that you couldn't have access to certain features or certain
20 areas? Did they forbid you to go there?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Could you tell us when and where?
23 A. I can't remember when but again on the road to Stolac on a number
24 of occasions we were turned back from a check-point.
25 Q. At the time that you wanted to pass through the check-points, was
1 there any shelling in the area, was there any ongoing combat?
2 A. We were -- we were turned back for whatever reason.
3 Q. Did you try to go to the same area after several days?
4 A. The normal procedure would be to go to --
5 Q. I'm not asking you about procedure. I'm asking you that if you
6 were sent back from a check-point on one day, did you try to go to the
7 same area several days later? Did you try to pass through those very same
8 check-points several days later, did you or did you not?
9 A. Having consulted with HVO, yes, we did.
10 Q. Very well. So you did go to the areas that you wanted to go to
11 after all, isn't that the case?
12 A. Not when we wanted to go, though.
13 Q. But probably when there was no ongoing combat and when it was
14 possible for you to be provided with the highest level of security, could
15 we agree on that?
16 A. Absolutely, we could not agree on that.
17 Q. Very well. We don't have time to go into that, unfortunately. I
18 would now like to clarify something about your first meeting with the
19 leadership of the ABiH in Mostar. I think there are several
20 contradictions and certain things are not clear in this testimony. I
21 think that you said that you spent about a week and a half in Mostar and
22 then you crossed over the bridge on foot to reach Eastern Mostar and you
23 said that upon arrival in Siroki Brijeg after about a week, you came to
24 Eastern Mostar. So could you please tell us when did you exactly go to
25 Eastern Mostar for the first time and meet the commanders of the ABiH
2 A. No, I think what I said was I thought it might be within a week
3 and a half. I also pointed out I wasn't sure. Unfortunately that's not
4 clear in my memory.
5 Q. A week and a half in relation to what? From the time that you
6 arrived in Siroki Brijeg or in relation to the time when you first arrived
7 in Mostar?
8 A. I've answered it. I can't remember, unfortunately.
20 A. No, absolutely not. But I'm just wondering did Mr. Beese make a
21 mistake from when the day he arrived in the mission area? I don't know
22 what date he arrived in the mission area.
23 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] My colleague has said that it's a
24 confidential document, and I would therefore request that we move into
25 private session. And do whatever is necessary to do with regard to the
1 transmission. I do apologise.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, let's move into
3 private session and you need to prepare an order for redaction, redact the
5 [Private session]
25 [Open session]
1 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Has this refreshed your memory, perhaps.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Sorry, counsel. Your Honours, we are back in open
5 THE WITNESS: My memory is as is, there is no change, but just
6 what date in 1992 was that written, by the way?
7 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. This statement was written, I'll tell you, in 2001.
9 A. No, sorry, sorry, just for my memory, at the beginning of the
10 statement you made there, you spoke about this witness from 1992, can you
11 just tell me when in 1992, if possible?
12 Q. It was during the conflict with the Serbs. During the conflict
13 against the Serbs. You were a European monitor, you know that this was
14 the end of 1992 and the beginning of 1993. And even the period after you
15 left, because the first next date that the witness mentions is May 1993.
16 I would now like to pass on to another topic and that is January
17 1993, but before we reach Gornji Vakuf, could my set of documents, which
18 is the orange colour set of documents, that you have in front of you, look
19 at document 4D 00394. It's a document that has already been admitted into
20 evidence, an observation for Your Honours, the orange stickers mark the
21 documents that have already been admitted. Witness, because of the
22 shortage of time, we will reduce our conversation about this document so
23 please look at the second paragraph from the bottom.
24 The second paragraph from the bottom, it is dated the 6th of
25 January 1993, whereby the commander of the 4th Corps of the ABiH orders
1 measures to be taken to combat alert because the peace conference in
2 Geneva is under way where we see in the first line, and in the
3 one-but-last paragraph it says that:
4 "Taking into consideration our experience when the aggressor is
5 concerned, it is to be expected that the aggressor forces shall continue
6 particularly during the continuation of the negotiations to launch fierce
7 attacks on the territory to achieve some military victories and territory
8 gains and their units will certainly continue with the attacks on
9 well-known points of Gradacac, Brcko, Tesanj and particularly Sarajevo and
10 east Bosnia."
11 We see from the whole document that the aggressor implies the Serb
12 side. Mr. Lane, were you aware that the BiH army at the beginning of
13 January 1993, because of the peace negotiations in Geneva, is taking
14 measures to raise the level of combat readiness?
15 A. I was aware that they were raising the level of combat awareness.
16 Q. Very well, thank you. In the course of the examination-in-chief,
17 the Prosecutor showed you a document signed by my client. It is in my set
18 of documents as well, so you can look at it. It is P 1238. The order
19 dated the 20th of January 1993. Signed by Milivoj Petkovic and
20 Arif Pasalic and it has to do with the cessation of hostilities. This is
21 a document we have already seen. My question will relate to a document
22 that preceded this one, so please look at document P --
23 A. Just give me the number again, please.
24 Q. I can but I won't be asking you about that document. P 01238.
1 A. I don't seem to be able to find it here.
2 Q. I apologise. It is in the Prosecutor's set of documents but you
3 won't need it. Look at document P 1211. It's a document from the day
4 before, the 19th of January 1993, the president of HZ HB, Mate Boban, the
5 head of the Defence department, addressed to the head of the Defence
6 department and the chief of the Main Staff issues an order banning
7 offensive operations. Have you found the document, Mr. Lane?
8 A. I think I have, yeah, it's P 01211, is it.
9 Q. 1211.
10 A. I have it.
11 Q. Can we see the second page of the English text, please, on the
12 e-court? Tell me, please, Mr. Lane, did you know that Mr. Mate Boban
13 issued this order on the 19th of January and that a decision on a
14 cease-fire was passed by the highest body of the both civilian and
15 military authorities in Herceg-Bosna?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Will you look at point 4 of this order, which says that the BH
18 army should be requested to order their troops to stop any further
19 offensive operations against HVO units in view of the fact that the order
20 on the cessation of operations was adopted the next day, it would be
21 logical to assume that the command of the ABiH did order its units to
22 cease fire. Isn't that so?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Tell us, please, can we conclude from this specific cease-fire
25 that a cease-fire as a rule ensued after the relevant political decision
1 to that effect was made? Can we agree on that?
2 A. Cease-fire, yes, come into operation as we've already discussed in
3 previous testimony for a short period of time.
4 Q. That was not my question. My question is whether we can infer
5 from these documents that a cease-fire would be implemented after the
6 relevant political bodies made the decision to halt fire?
7 A. [Previous translation continues] ... Yes, we could infer that.
8 Q. In this connection, your colleague, Christopher Beese said that
9 the task of General Petkovic was to implement the decision on a cease-fire
10 and this is in transcript page 3213. Would you agree with that conclusion
11 of your colleague, Mr. Beese?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Very well. And then, as you told us, on the 21st of January,
14 there was a truce and you told us that on the 22nd of January, several
15 hours after the truce came into effect, the HVO violated the truce. Is my
16 interpretation correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Tell me, please, though you were not aware of the details of the
19 peace talks in Geneva, did you know that at the beginning of January, a
20 peace conference was being held in Geneva and also towards the end of
21 January, from the 23rd until the 28th of January, 1993?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Did you know that General Petkovic was one of the persons
24 participating in the work of the peace conference in Geneva?
25 A. No, I did not.
1 Q. Very well. Then probably you couldn't know that on the 22nd of
2 January General Petkovic was travelling to Geneva so as to take part at
3 the conference on the 23rd, but did you know at least that he wasn't in
4 the area of Herceg-Bosna on the 22nd of January?
5 A. I think as I pointed out before, I was dealing with
6 Colonel Siljeg. I was not aware that General Petkovic was out of the
7 area, no.
8 Q. Very well. My colleague, Mr. Karnavas, showed us yesterday an
9 order by my client, General Petkovic, issued in Geneva on the 24th of
10 January 1993. I will show you that same document now. It was probably by
11 computer. P 1286 is the document. It hasn't been admitted into evidence.
12 1286. I see you found it. We see now that it is a document dated the
13 24th of January 1993. Tell us, please, Mr. Lane, did you perhaps on any
14 occasion find out how come that on the 24th of January, this order should
15 be sent from Geneva?
16 A. Sorry, ma'am, I don't understand your question.
17 Q. Were you aware or did you find out later what was going on in
18 Geneva that would explain why General Petkovic was sending such an order
19 from Geneva? If you didn't know, it's all right.
20 A. To answer your question directly, as I've said I was on the ground
21 in Gornji Vakuf so I was not aware of what you're saying here.
22 Q. Tell us now, please, Mr. Lane, as a professional soldier, when you
23 read this order, and when you see the word "immediately," written in
24 capitals, with spacing in between, whereby obviously the idea is to
25 emphasise the word, what would your conclusion be as a professional
2 A. Cease immediately, stop immediately.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Commandant, the question of a
4 purely military technical nature. This document mentions an advanced
5 forward command post in Prozor. You who were on the ground, what is a
6 forward command post?
7 THE WITNESS: Forward command post, sir, is where the officer in
8 charge of the operation would set up his -- one of his headquarters so he
9 can direct operations.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you're saying that when there
11 is a military operation, the officer who is in charge of the operation is
12 located in a forward command post?
13 THE WITNESS: Yes, Your Honour, he will have all his maps and
14 relevant information so he can direct operations and a communication
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And is this some rule that is in
17 force in all the armies in the world? Or was this something specific to
18 the area of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
19 THE WITNESS: No, Your Honour. Forward command post is a standard
20 procedure for most operations.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
22 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Mr. Lane, may I ask you when did you see this
23 document, if at all, for the first time?
24 THE WITNESS: Now.
25 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Now. Thank you.
1 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] It is not in dispute that the
2 witness didn't see this document before. This was stated yesterday, when
3 Mr. Karnavas was questioning the witness but we are talking about the
4 contents and the events linked to this document.
5 Q. Tell us, Mr. Lane, if you know, when this document was issued on
6 the 24th of January, a Colonel Stewart, General Morillon, were they in
7 Gornji Vakuf?
8 A. I can't remember it.
9 Q. Very well. Tell me, did you ever visit Colonel Siljeg at the
10 forward command post there?
11 A. No.
12 Q. I will now show you some documents that followed before you went
13 to Gornji Vakuf and the peace negotiations. Let us begin with document
14 P 1329. It's a document that has already been admitted into evidence. It
15 is a joint statement by Mr. Izetbegovic and Mate Boban, dated the 27th of
16 January 1993, compiled in Geneva. It's a brief document. You can see it.
17 I just wish to draw your attention to the concluding part of this joint
18 statement. Did you know that Alija Izetbegovic and Mate Boban informed
19 the commanders of the ABiH and the HVO, and they directed them to solve
20 difficulties and to immediately set up a joint command? And I'm
21 particularly interested in this joint command. Did you know that there
22 was a political agreement on the formation of a joint command?
23 A. I was aware that a document had -- a joint document had been
24 issued like this. I cannot remember, however, whether the con -- whether
25 I was aware of the contents as I see them now. I can't remember.
1 Q. Very well, please look at document P 1322. It's a document with
2 the same date, issued by my client, General Petkovic, on the basis of this
3 joint command whereby all operative activities are being banned but what
4 we are particularly interested in that at the level of operative zones,
5 contact be established with the appropriate commands of the ABiH with a
6 view to setting up joint commands. Were you a witness of these activities
7 at the end of January 1993, when these joint commands were being formed at
8 regional levels and at higher levels?
9 A. As I said, at that stage, I was in Gornji Vakuf. There was no
10 joint commands being formed there.
11 Q. We'll come to documents relating to Gornji Vakuf. Let us look at
12 P 1341, please. It's a document dated the 28th of January, issued by
13 General Petkovic, and in agreement with representatives of the 4th Corps
14 of the ABiH, that a coordinating body be set up consisting of
15 representatives of the army and the HVO at the level of the zone of
16 operations of southeastern Herzegovina and the 4th Corps. An identical
17 order was issued by Arif Pasalic, and it is a document you can find under
18 number 4D 366. Tell me, please, did you know that Milivoj Petkovic and
19 Arif Pasalic issued orders on the same days to form a coordinating body at
20 the level of the Mostar region?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Very well. Now we are approaching the issue of Gornji Vakuf. So
23 look at document P 1467, please. We are coming to discussions with
24 Sefer Halilovic now. It is an order dated the 11th of February 1993, and
25 I will summarise it but you can read it through. Agreement is being
1 reached at the level of the 3rd Corps of the ABiH and the operative zone
2 of the HVO Central Bosnia to form a coordinating team and the names are
3 Hadzihasanovic and Blaskic.
4 Under paragraph 2 it says, "The existing coordinating team of the
5 ABiH and the HVO in Gornji Vakuf shall carry out the same assignments and
6 its sphere of authority shall include Bugojno."
7 Point 3 talks about Mostar.
8 Point 4 says, "All the coordinating teams mentioned are charged
9 with the task of preparing a proposal for the composition of joint
10 commands in the areas of responsibility on the basis of the agreement
11 reached by Izetbegovic and Boban."
12 Tell us, Mr. Lane, please, whether you were a witness of all these
13 efforts to form coordinating bodies at the level of various operative
14 zones and at the level of the whole of Herceg-Bosna. Were you aware of
16 A. Yes. I was aware.
17 Q. Very well. You mentioned that you met General Petkovic at a
18 meeting on the 30th [as interpreted] of January 1993 in Mostar and you
19 also mentioned that with him and Arif Pasalic, you drove in your vehicles
20 towards Gornji Vakuf. Do you remember that?
21 A. Yes, I do.
22 Q. Can we agree that this joint trip with General Petkovic to
23 Gornji Vakuf took place on the 13th of February 1993?
24 A. No. I cannot.
25 Q. All I can do is to refer to the testimony of Mr. Christopher
1 Beese, page 3102 of the transcript, where, in lines 14 to 18 he speaks of
2 his trip to Gornji Vakuf on the 13th of February mentioning you,
3 General Petkovic, and Arif Pasalic. Tell us, please, whether you know
4 that General Petkovic stayed only for one day in Gornji Vakuf on that
5 occasion and that all further discussions on the signing of an agreement
6 he left to his associates?
7 A. That is correct.
8 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, my colleague has
9 drawn attention to an error in the transcript, page 39 [as interpreted],
10 line 13, my question related to the 19th of January 1993 in Mostar, so I
11 would like to correct the transcript accordingly.
12 Q. I have prepared, Mr. Lane, another document, P 1481, which was
13 also prepared for you by the Prosecution for your examination-in-chief and
14 he probably changed his mind when you said you couldn't remember those
15 agreements, but let's have a look at them now. It's an agreement dated
16 the 13th of February signed by Zrinko Tokic, and then there is another
17 agreement of the 7th of February signed by Colonel Siljeg.
18 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Ms. Alaburic, you have just announced a
19 correction on page 39. That's what the transcript says. On page 39,
20 Mr. Praljak is actually interrogating the witness. So probably the page
21 is erroneous.
22 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. It should be page 69.
23 I'm sorry. I wasn't following the transcript.
24 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you. I can understand that very, very
25 well. It's no criticism. Just an attempt to assist. Thank you.
1 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you for assistance. That was
2 how I took it anyway, as assistance.
3 Q. Let's go back to Mr. Siljeg. You said that you were most
4 concerned by the fact that Mr. Siljeg did not come to those negotiations.
5 The Prosecutor showed you a document on Monday, the number is P 1303, you
6 don't need to look at it. I have nothing to ask you about it. This
7 document says that Colonel Siljeg left the meeting because he was informed
8 about the two soldiers having been killed and then he came the next day
9 not in the morning but in the afternoon. Can you nevertheless confirm
10 that Colonel Siljeg did take part in those negotiations and he did sign
11 the agreements reached with the representatives of the ABiH?
12 A. I think you're mixing up two things here. I never said
13 Colonel Siljeg did not come to negotiations. What I said was when we were
14 going through the final cease-fire agreements, he failed to show for that.
15 Q. I must admit I can't understand quite what you said.
16 A. Okay, if I can explain.
17 Q. No. There is no need really, Mr. Lane. I have very little time
18 left and document P 1303, it is stated why Colonel Siljeg left and that he
19 came back the next day. So there isn't a single document that
20 Colonel Siljeg should have signed and he didn't sign; is that right? Can
21 we agree on that?
22 A. That is not correct.
23 Q. Tell us which document was it that he could have signed and he
25 A. The cease-fire arrangement, the documentation which was prepared
1 by Mr. Beese on the 16th of February, was not signed by Mr. --
2 Colonel Siljeg.
3 Q. As far as I can understand, the cease-fire agreement was signed at
4 a far higher level, and now it was just a matter of implementation and
5 execution. I'd like to now go on to another subject I'd like to return to
6 Colonel Siljeg if we have time. There is a matter that I think is of much
7 importance. You told us that the ABiH was more prepared to cooperate and
8 more willing to put an end to the conflict whereas in your opinion the HVO
9 wasn't really interested in a cease-fire.
10 I'd now like to show you some ABiH documents that relate to the
11 day when you spoke to HVO representatives in Mostar on the 19th of January
12 1993. And also, when you were trying to negotiate a cease-fire and an
13 implementation of the agreement. First of all, could you have a look at
14 P1210? It's a document drafted by Selmo Cikotic from the ABiH brigade in
15 Gornji Vakuf. It's dated the 19th of January 1993. It's a special combat
16 report addressed to the commander of the 3rd Corps. We can read through
17 some parts of the document together. I'll just read out what I consider
18 to be important. Under item 1, Mr. Lane, tell us, did you ever have the
19 opportunity of meeting Selmo Cikotic? Do you know who he was?
20 A. Yes, I did.
21 Q. Can you tell us who he is, if you remember?
22 A. I think he was the local commander on the ground.
23 Q. Very well. Very well. The ABiH, that's clear. Item 1,
24 Mr. Cikotic says that in combat to date they have lost the villages of
25 Uzricje, Dusa, the lower part of Hrasnice, and a location where the relay
1 on Strmica was located was lost. Mr. Lane, as a professional soldier, if
2 someone says in a combat report something to this effect, does this mean
3 that the ABiH was in the villages of Uzricje, Dusa, Hrasnice and at the
4 Strmica feature and after combat it lost those areas? Is that what this
5 paragraph in this document means?
6 A. It appears to indicate that.
7 Q. Very well. Item 2, on that day when you were in Mostar agreeing
8 on a cease-fire with the HVO and trying to find a peaceful solution to the
9 conflict, the ABiH said, "The plan is to execute sabotage actions in the
10 course of the night and to do so in several actions." I won't now mention
11 the axes mentioned. In item 3, Selmo Cikotic tells -- makes certain
12 requests which he addresses to his corps commander. We can see that they
13 are in fact requesting assistance from Bugojno, they want help with the
14 artillery that is to shell certain targets. They are requesting help from
15 Konjic and Novi Travnik and they are requesting that the mujahedin help
16 them. You can see that item number 1 mentions the mujahedin.
17 Mr. Lane, did you know that in the area of Gornji Vakuf, the ABiH
18 was massing its forces and preparing for certain combat operations and
19 that concerns the day on which were you speaking to Arif Pasalic and
20 Mr. Prlic and my client, General Petkovic in Mostar? Did you know that?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Have a look at P 1214. The Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command
23 Sefer Halilovic has addressed this document to Arif Pasalic. This was at
24 the time that you spoke to Arif Pasalic and it says that, given the
25 situation in Gornji Vakuf, it's necessary to take the following measures.
1 The Neretvica Brigade and adequate forces from Prozor are to be engaged in
2 order to take Makljen.
3 Makljen is the pass that you have already referred to, isn't that
4 the case, Mr. Lane?
5 A. Correct.
6 Q. And tell us, did you know that the ABiH on the 19th of January
7 1993 was planning to take Makljen?
8 A. I'm reading this order and to answer your question, no. I'm
9 reading the order.
10 Q. Very well. Have a look at 4D 360. It's on the following day. It
11 concerns the engaging the Neretvica Brigade. Arif Pasalic issue as order
12 to the commander of the 7th Konjic Brigade and to the commander of the
13 Neretvica brigade and again given the situation in Gornji Vakuf he orders
14 that the Neretvica Brigade together with the units of the Prozor Battalion
15 take the Makljen Pass. In brackets, Here, Sciti and Kute are also
17 Do you know those place names, Mr. Lane? Have you ever heard of
18 these names? Do you know what they refer to?
19 A. Sorry, would you just repeat those names?
20 Q. In brackets, you can see the following names. It's under item 1
21 in brackets, you can see Here, Sciti, it should read Scipe but it says
22 Sciti, and then you have Kute.
23 Do you know what these features are, are they villages, hills?
24 A. I would say I knew them in 1992 but I forget now.
25 Q. Very well. These are the names of villages. This order shows
1 that Arif Pasalic, pursuant to an order from his superior, ordered his men
2 to go into the field and to capture Makljen. Can we agree on that,
3 Mr. Lane?
4 A. Yes, the -- as I read the order that's it, yeah.
5 Q. Very well. We can skip some of the documents. Have a look at
6 another document now. P 1226. It's on the same day.
7 Enver Hadzihasanovic, the 3rd Corps commander is reporting to the staff of
8 the BH armed forces. We can read through, we can all read through the
9 document. I'd like to discuss the last section of the document, the fifth
10 line from the bottom in the B/C/S. Or rather it's the end of the first
11 page in English. It says the upper part of the town and all the villages
12 inhabited by Muslims are under the control of the army, apart from the
13 village of Uzricje, from which some of the residents have voluntarily
14 evacuated and moved to Gornji Vakuf as well as to the village of Hrasnice,
15 whose residents have been evacuated to Grnica.
16 Mr. Lane, does this ABiH report show that the Muslim inhabitants
17 voluntarily left the village of Uzricje and moved to Gornji Vakuf? And
18 that is also the case for the village of Hrasnice? Is this something that
19 we can conclude on the basis of this document?
20 A. I'd like to read this document.
21 Q. Please go ahead.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] While he is reading the
23 document, we could have our 20-minute break now. We will resume at 6.00
24 p.m. Ms. Alaburic, you ever another 30 minutes at your disposal, in
25 principle, but we'll have to calculate the time, and the Prosecution will
1 have its 30 minutes for re-examination. So we should be able to conclude
2 by the end of the day.
3 Sir, you have read the document now. Answer the question.
4 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, I took you up wrong there. I thought
5 what you meant was I would bring the document with me for the break and
6 read it during the break. I apologise. I didn't read it.
7 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would be very
8 grateful if the witness could read all the other documents that are in my
9 bundle, the ones we haven't discussed yet. It will be easier for the next
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. During the 20-minute
12 break you can have a rest by reading the documents. We'll resume in 20
13 minutes' time.
14 --- Recess taken at 5.42 p.m.
15 --- On resuming at 6.01 p.m.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We will now resume.
17 Ms. Alaburic, the registrar has done the necessary calculations and he has
18 informed me that that you have used up an hour.
19 MR. KARNAVAS: I wanted to -- you probably have noticed that
20 Mr. Kovacic is absent from the Court and he indicated he wanted me to pass
21 along just in case you haven't been apprised, that he is feeling rather
22 sick and so that's why he's not here.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. I hope he will be
24 well soon. Ms. Alaburic, you have used up your time. We'll grant you
25 another five minutes to conclude so that we are fair.
1 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if I could be granted
2 a little more time, I appreciate that, but it's for you to decide whether
3 the subjects are of importance.
4 Q. Witness, I want to finish asking you questions about this
5 document. I know you're interested in others parts of the document but
6 I'd like you to tell me something about the two villages mentioned in this
7 report drafted by Enver Hadzihasanovic, these villages from which the
8 Muslim inhabitants left on a voluntary basis. Is that what we can
9 conclude on the basis of the report?
10 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, counsel, I apologise, could I get the
11 exhibit number for this document?
12 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Yes. P 01226.
13 Q. Witness, as a professional soldier, when you read through the
14 report of another professional soldier, is this a conclusion one can draw?
15 A. Well, I don't know if the translation "arbitrary evacuation" is a
16 correct translation from the Serbo-Croat, if I'm reading the right thing.
17 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Voluntarily.
18 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. "The upper part of the town and all the villages inhabited by
20 Muslims under the ABiH control apart from the villages -- apart from the
21 village of Uzricje, from which part of the population left on a voluntary
22 basis and they moved to Gornji Vakuf." That's the case for the village of
23 Hrasnica and the population was evacuated from that village to Grnica.
24 A. I'm not being difficult here. I apologise for this. Maybe I'm
25 just getting tired but could you just point me in the direction of the
1 word "voluntary" in that document, please?
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic -- voluntarily,
3 what you're saying is important. Can you read down the paragraph in your
4 own language because the English translation is problematic, I believe.
5 So I would like to you read out the paragraph in your own language, the
6 paragraph that relates to the inhabitants of the village, the inhabitants
7 who left their village. Could you read it out in your own language?
8 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have just done
9 that. It's on the page that is on the screen now from line 12.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please reread it slowly.
11 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Very well. "The upper part of the
12 town and all the villages inhabited by Muslims are under the control of
13 the Armija, of the army, apart from the village of Uzricje, from which
14 some of the residents have moved out voluntarily." I'll end the quote. I
15 don't believe the interpretation is correct because it doesn't say, "some
16 of the residents," it says, "Part of" perhaps we could be more literal.
17 I'll recommence, "The other part of the town and all the villages
18 inhabited by Muslims are under the control of the Armija apart from the
19 village of Uzricje, from which a part of the residents have voluntarily
20 moved out and moved to Gornji Vakuf. As well as the village of Hrasnica,
21 whose residents have been evacuated to Grnica." So the word "samovoljno"
22 has been translated as arbitrarily. And I think that's a correct
23 translation. It's been translated as voluntarily, not arbitrarily.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. As I had some doubts about
25 the translation, I wanted to you read it out in your own language and
1 translation introduces the idea of voluntarily. That means that the
2 villagers left these two villages voluntarily. It means that they weren't
3 controlled. They weren't forced to do so. That's the correct
4 translation. Please continue.
5 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Very well, I don't think we have to linger on this document now.
7 I'd like to clarify something about the military leadership in
8 Herceg-Bosna. Did you know that Mate Boban was the supreme commander of
9 the armed forces of Herceg-Bosna?
10 A. I might have known in 1992 but I don't know today.
11 Q. But you have told us that my client, General Petkovic, had control
12 over his subordinates, which is why I have to ask you whether you believe
13 that he had control over each and every soldier and each and every officer
14 of the HVO?
15 A. Every officer is responsible for what his soldiers do and fail to
16 do. It's one of the principles of being a military officer.
17 Q. Mr. Lane, I'm not talking about responsibility. I'm asking you
18 about control now. You established that General Petkovic had control over
19 his subordinates and now I want to ask you something about your claim.
20 First of all, I would like to ask you whether you had control over all
21 soldiers, all officers and all HVO units in the territory of Herceg-Bosna
22 in mind?
23 A. What I had in mind were the people who report directly to him in
24 his chain of command.
25 Q. Can you tell us who these people were, the people who were
1 directly accountable to him?
2 A. No. What I'm saying is General Petkovic worked in a structure and
3 he had a certain position in that structure. Everybody underneath him, he
4 was responsible for. I don't know what the structure was and I can't
5 remember who was under him. But he is responsible for those people.
6 Q. Mr. Lane, I'd like to draw your attention to the following again.
7 We are not discussing responsibility or the chain of command. We are
8 referring to your claim that he had control over his subordinates. Tell
9 me, did you believe that he had real and effective control or does the
10 concept of control have a different meaning for you?
11 A. No. Control/responsibility. It's a military definition we are
12 talking about here and we are talking about the chain of command. That's
13 what we are talking about.
14 Q. So you then did not have real and effective control in mind, you
15 didn't have specific events in mind, events for which he had control? You
16 were thinking of control in terms of chain of command; is that correct?
17 A. General Petkovic is part of a military structure, as I am, and as
18 I repeat, every officer is responsible for what his subordinates do or
19 fail to do. That is a fact.
20 Q. That's not in dispute, Mr. Lane. We are now just trying to
21 analyse your claim, which has much weight in these proceedings, and that
22 claim concerns the fact that General Petkovic had control over his
23 subordinates. My task is to clarify the sort of control you were
24 referring to when you made that claim.
25 A. He is responsible for the effective, efficient administration and
1 operational activity of his people. That's the control.
2 Q. But control and responsibility are matters that need to be
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please answer the question now
5 and we will then conclude. The Judges are becoming impatient. Please
6 answer the question.
7 THE WITNESS: Sir, Your Honour, in the military system, a military
8 officer is vested with responsibility/control for his subordinates.
9 That's exactly what I'm talking about.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic, that concludes
11 your examination.
12 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] If I may just put one concluding
13 question to the witness?
14 Q. Mr. Lane, your conclusion according to which General Petkovic had
15 control over his subordinates, can you tell me the factual basis upon
16 which you drew such a conclusion? Apart from the fact that he occupied a
17 certain position within the chain of command?
18 A. Counsel, that is the whole point of what I'm saying. He was a
19 general in a military structure. That gives him responsibilities that he
20 has to ensure that he applies in a pure, effective, fair manner. That's
21 what I'm talking about.
22 Q. So if we could then agree on this, your claim concerns the
23 position he occupied within the HVO chain of command; is that correct?
24 A. Absolutely. He's a military officer.
25 Q. Mr. Lane, thank you. I am sorry we didn't have more time and I
1 would like to thank the Judges for granting me additional time?
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer?
3 Re-examination by Mr. Stringer:
4 Q. Thank you, Mr. President. Witness, while you've got those
5 documents there with you, I want to take you to a couple of those first.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Don't forget that re-examination
7 has to have a direct link to the cross-examination. That's always the
8 case. So to avoid any questions, you should say, "When answering such and
9 such a question, you said such and such a thing. And now I have this
10 document to show you and so on and so forth." We need a basis and then an
12 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President.
13 Q. Witness, Ms. Alaburic showed you Exhibit P 1214 and asked you some
14 questions about a couple of items in that, 1214. Do you have that
15 document with you?
16 A. I have it in front of me.
17 Q. This is a document of the Armija directed to the 4th Corps
18 commander, Mr. Pasalic. You see that?
19 A. I have it in front of me.
20 Q. Okay. I just wanted ask you a couple of questions about this
21 first paragraph. Second sentence says, "The attack on the -- and the
22 attack of the HVO units on the city," referring to Gornji Vakuf, "is
23 carried out from the direction of Prozor, from the area of Makljen Pass."
24 Is that consistent with your own observations from having been up there?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. All right. Continues: "There are still no infantry attacks on
2 the city but the city and our defenders are under fire from all -- from
3 all artillery weapons." Again, the fighters or defenders here being those
4 of the Army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, is that sentence also consistent with
5 the observations that you made when you arrive?
6 A. I would agree with that.
7 Q. Okay. Next sentence continues: "HVO forces were brought from
8 Tomislavgrad, Livno and other towns in Herzegovina." Is that consistent
9 with the briefings and the information that was available to you at the
10 time as well?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Okay. Thank you. The next document that I want to take you to is
13 one that was also just shown to you by Ms. Alaburic. It's 1266. P 01266.
14 And --
15 A. Sorry, I beg your pardon. P 0?
16 Q. P 01266. I think it's just the document behind the one that you
17 were just looking at. 1266?
18 A. 1226?
19 Q. I'm sorry, 1266.
20 A. I'm sure it's here but I can't find it.
21 Q. I'm sorry, I'm saying it wrong. 1226. My mistake.
22 A. Okay.
23 Q. Now, this is dated the 19th of January 1993. And again it's an
24 Armija, army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, document, SITREP for Gornji Vakuf, 19
25 January. The first sentence makes reference to an ultimatum which had
1 expired. Do you know what that refers to?
2 A. It was the subordination of the Armija forces to the HVO.
3 Q. Okay. Then it continues, the HVO launched an all-out attack on
4 Gornji Vakuf on the 18th of January at 0300 hours. Is that consistent
5 with the information that you were -- that you were receiving at the time?
6 A. Absolutely.
7 Q. All right. And that the attack was using all available means
8 tanks, howitzers, MB, I'm not sure what that is, armoured transport, PAM,
9 answer aircraft machine-gun, et cetera. Based on what you saw, were
10 those -- with the exception of the chemical agents, which I'll ask you
11 about but the other items, the other types of weaponry, were those -- is
12 that consistent with what you were observing once you arrived there?
13 A. I cannot itemise the different natures of equipment used but I
14 know there was artillery and rockets fired. I cannot give designations
15 like that.
16 Q. Do you know or did you hear, were you briefed at all, about
17 whether any chemical weapons were being used in the course of this
19 A. No.
20 Q. Okay. Then the next line, again troops which the HVO drew from
21 Prozor were deployed in the region of couple of locations and then there
22 is a reference to Makljen again and additional locations. I know that
23 you're not going to know all those places but again at least in respect of
24 Makljen --
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. -- is that consistent with what your information was?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Okay. Could I direct you to another exhibit that was shown to you
4 on the cross-examination just a little while ago? Exhibit 1211, 1211.
5 It's also in the binder. This is an order emanating from Mr. Mate Boban
6 dated 19th of January to the head of the Defence department, chief of the
7 HVO Main Staff. So at this time, on the 19th of January 1993, do you know
8 what this order was directed to? Who was the chief of the Main Staff of
9 the HVO?
10 A. I presume it was General Petkovic.
11 Q. Okay. Do you know who was the head of the Defence department at
12 that time?
13 A. Mr. Stojic.
14 Q. Okay. So now, with Mr. Boban issuing an order to Mr. Stojic and
15 General Petkovic, is that consistent with the chain of command as you
16 understood it to exist at the time?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Okay. Okay. You can put that away. Now, I want to take you back
19 now to some -- a couple of the items or issues that were raised during
20 your cross-examination yesterday, and the first of those relates to -- I
21 know there were a couple of questions that came up, I think, from
22 Mr. Karnavas and also Mrs. -- Well, I don't want to misstate it but I'm
23 going to ask you about your interpreter, the first interpreter that you
24 hired, Ms. Zvoko [sic]?
25 A. Zovko.
1 Q. All right. Because you were asked who or how did you decide or
2 learn who were the people that you should talk to when you first arrived
3 in Siroki Brijeg, and you indicated that it was this interpreter Ms. Zovko
4 who was one of the first or who was actually a source of information on
6 A. She was absolutely, and she introduced me to, as I said, key
7 leaders, pointed me in the right direction.
8 Q. Okay. And would that include Mr. Prlic, Stojic and the others
9 that you testified --
10 A. No, I think I would have been briefed about men -- these very
11 important people at some stage.
12 Q. Okay. What was her nationality or her ethnic background?
13 A. She was Australian and she was Croat.
14 Q. Okay. And did she bear a relationship to the priest in
15 Siroki Brijeg who you testified about?
16 A. Yeah. She was related to him.
17 Q. Okay. Now, I want to ask you just a brief question or two about
18 the map or the drawing that was -- you were asked about on the
19 cross-examination by Mr. Karnavas. He took you to paragraph 47 of your
20 witness statement and the question that I have on that is -- you were
21 asked where is the drawing or was it given to you? And I don't know who
22 actually physically made the drawing, if you recall?
23 A. It was Mr. Prlic.
24 Q. All right. And is there anything particular about how he made the
25 drawing that you recall as you sit here today?
1 A. Just remember being surprised at it.
2 Q. Okay. What did he use to make the drawing?
3 A. A pen.
4 Q. All right. Okay. You remember that?
5 A. Yeah.
6 Q. Okay. And anything in particular you remember about that beyond
7 what you've already said?
8 A. It was some sort of a pen.
9 Q. Okay. All right.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] A ballpoint pen, a fountain pen,
11 a good pen, what kind of pen.
12 THE WITNESS: A very good pen, good quality.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Of a Swiss brand?
14 MR. STRINGER:
15 Q. Witness, also during your cross-examination by Mr. Karnavas, he
16 took you to paragraph 37 of your witness statement or your OTP witness
17 statement, I should say, and he read that to you and I want to just also
18 read that same part to you and ask you to clarify something. What the
19 statement says is this: "I attended a number of meetings of the
20 Presidency of the self-proclaimed Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna. I
21 noticed during the meetings that Mr. Prlic was the most significant
22 personality at these meetings even though Mr. Boban would chair the
23 meeting, he had very little input into the deliberations."
24 And then Mr. Karnavas then asked a couple of questions about the
25 Presidency, what you understood that to be, the meetings, and also the
1 self-proclaimed part of the title. Do you recall that?
2 A. I do.
3 Q. Okay. My question is this: Whether, as indicated here, whether
4 it is in fact your evidence that at these meetings, Mr. Prlic was the most
5 significant personality and that -- well, I'll just leave it at that,
6 whether as indicated here Mr. Prlic was the most significant personality
7 at these meetings?
8 A. Yes, I'd stand by that.
9 Q. Okay. And then -- excuse me, Mr. President. You were taken to
10 paragraph 112 of your statement, and this part was read to you and then
11 you were invited to -- there was part of it that you withdrew, that you
12 wanted to withdraw, and I wanted to clarify what you were withdrawing and
13 what you're not withdrawing. And this is the part that was read to you on
15 "In my professional opinion, that throughout my period of time in
16 the area of operations, the Republic of Croatia was a major influence both
17 politically and militarily with the Bosnian Croats and their activity."
18 And then was continued: "On many occasions," again this is from
19 your statement now. "On many occasions I saw military hardware with
20 Croatian army designation and military personnel wearing the uniform of
21 the Croatian army."
22 Continuing: "I believe that the Bosnian Croats saw no future for
23 the Bosnian Muslims. There is no doubt that the influence of the European
24 Union and the future ambitions of people like Boban and Jadranko Prlic
25 ensured that these people were very conscious of not upsetting the
1 European Union. However, they had contempt for the United Nations."
2 And then counsel continued on the same theme taking you to
3 paragraph 45 of your statement where he made reference to Mr. Boban and
4 his cohorts wanting to live in a Greater Croatia as a society based on
5 Catholicism, and then again, as indicated in your statement: "It appeared
6 to me that their major political direction was unification with the
7 Republic of Croatia."
8 So now you were asked about all that and I wanted to make sure the
9 record is clear what your evidence is on that in terms of what you're
10 withdrawing and what you're not withdrawing. Is it your evidence that in
11 your opinion, based on the period of time you spent in the area, that the
12 Republic of Croatia was a major influence both politically and militarily
13 with the Bosnian Croats?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. All right. Now, if I understand correctly, then it was your
16 intent to withdraw the next sentence which says, "On many occasions, I saw
17 military hardware with Croatian army designation and military personnel
18 wearing the uniform of the Croatian army."
19 Is that -- do you stay with that?
20 A. Yes, yes.
21 Q. Okay. So the withdrawal -- the part you wanted to correct or
22 modify then related I think more to the Croatian army equipment, tanks and
24 A. That's all.
25 Q. Okay. Because you didn't see any Croatian army tanks, I think
1 is -- all right. It continues, "I believe that the Bosnian Croats saw no
2 future for the Bosnian Muslims." Is that still your evidence?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Okay. And then, the passage about Boban and Prlic ensuring that
5 the people were -- that they did not want to upset the European Union but
6 they had contempt for the United Nations. Is that still your evidence
7 or --
8 A. Maybe the word "contempt" was a bit strong.
9 Q. Okay. The reference to the United Nations there, I wasn't sure, I
10 mean that's a pretty --
11 A. UNPROFOR.
12 Q. Okay. And then finally, whether you were withdrawing or modifying
13 or standing by your evidence as to whether Mr. Boban and his cohorts
14 wanted to live in a Greater Croatia, a society based on Catholicism and a
15 the major direction was unification with the Republic of Croatia?
16 A. I believe that, yes.
17 Q. Okay.
18 JUDGE TRECHSEL: May I just intervene here Mr. Stringer because
19 your question was termed differently from the statement. You said they
20 wanted to live in and here it says they were living in. Perhaps you would
21 wish to clarify this.
22 MR. STRINGER: I will. I'm actually reading from the transcript
23 of the Court hearing yesterday when the statement was read back and I
24 should probably just be reading directly from the statement. This is
25 paragraph 45, I believe.
1 "Mr. Boban and his cohorts were of the opinion that they were
2 living in Greater Croatia as a society based on Catholicism with very
3 little interest in other ethnic groups such as the Muslims. It appeared
4 to me that their major political direction was unification with the
5 Republic of Croatia.
6 Q. Now, are you still of that view or was -- is that the view that
7 you reached based on your experience in the region?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Okay. You were asked by counsel for Mr. Prlic and then also I
10 believe counsel for Mr. Stojic about the situation with the refugees at
11 the gym in Posusje, and you were specifically asked who did you contact
12 about getting aid in there? Did you --
13 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Excuse me, as far as I know, I didn't
14 ask any questions about Posusje. I don't think that that is particularly
15 important, but let the record be clear. I talked about aid to Stolac, not
16 about Posusje.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Stringer, is there a
18 mistake there?
19 MR. STRINGER: Well, I'm looking at page 23849 of the transcript
20 yesterday. At line 11, the witness says that he's referring to Stolac,
21 Posusje, Gradska and other areas and he's talking about the situation of
22 humanitarian aid and then moving down to line 20, counsel says, "You
23 haven't asked my question. I'm asking, I'm talking about the distribution
24 of humanitarian aid that did reach the Muslims coming from UNHCR to
25 Eastern Mostar."
1 And then the question is by counsel on line 23: "My question was
2 whether you were aware of the way in which the humanitarian aid was
3 distributed, did you have any information about the distribution?" So I
4 believe -- I interpreted that to include Posusje because the witness had
5 mentioned a couple of different locations. But I don't think it actually
6 affects my question and I'll withdraw it to the extent that --
7 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm glad that the
8 colleague has read this out because this related to humanitarian aid to
9 East Mostar. I remember that I had no questions about Posusje and what my
10 learned friend has just read confirms that, but he has withdrawn the
11 question so I don't think that is important any longer. I just wanted to
12 say that I was sure about what I said.
13 MR. STRINGER: I'm not going to withdraw the question but I --
14 it's my position that the issue of the humanitarian aid distribution to
15 the refugees at the Posusje gym was raised. I know it was discussed on
16 the cross-examination by Mr. Karnavas and I'd like to ask just one
17 question to follow-up on that point.
18 MR. KARNAVAS: Before the question is asked I would like a
19 foundation because timing is important. And whether the gentleman knew at
20 the time how much aid was actually available to provide, who was in
21 control of that aid, who was distributing and so on and so forth. So I
22 think that there is some foundation, but I'll listen to the question, I'll
23 be glad to object if I need to.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please put your question to the
1 MR. STRINGER: Thanks, Mr. President. It's much more specific
3 Q. And that is this, Witness: Do you recall, did you or any of your
4 people actually go down to Posusje and make any observations about the
5 distribution or non-distribution of humanitarian aid to the people in that
7 A. I think I said in testimony that we carried out an investigation
8 of Posusje.
9 Q. And what did that investigation involve?
10 A. That there was an urgent requirement for humanitarian aid to be
11 brought to those people.
12 Q. All right. Did you send anyone down there to observe whether they
13 were getting the aid that they needed?
14 A. We sent a vehicle down on a number of nights to see where, if
15 there was humanitarian aid there, where was it actually going.
16 Q. And what did they find?
17 A. We found a number of military vehicles leaving the location with
18 this aid.
19 Q. Okay. Do you know what group or military organisation these
20 vehicles belonged to?
21 A. Yeah, HVO.
22 Q. Okay.
23 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, that concludes my redirect. As I
24 indicated yesterday it was my intention to just tender into evidence the
25 witness's statement based upon the questions that were put to him, the
1 parts of it that were read out to him, not just by Mr. Karnavas but it was
2 gone into extensively by the other accused as well in cross-examination
3 and so it is my intention to tender the statement itself into evidence.
4 MR. KARNAVAS: If I may be heard briefly on that and I'm glad this
5 was raised now: The Prosecution can't have it both ways. They can't
6 decide to bring a witness viva voce and then try to tender a statement and
7 after they do, their direct -- full-blown direct examination, to avail
8 themselves to another procedure that was available to them at the time.
9 That's first and foremost and now I'm talking about 92 ter. They have in
10 the past and I'm sure this was a tactical or strategic decision on their
11 part. I think that it wouldn't be personal for me to say that between the
12 two senior trial lawyers they have 50 years of experience so I doubt if
13 they make decisions on the fly, you know, as it were.
14 So they made a tactical decision to bring the gentleman in, first
15 of all. Second of all, portions of the statement were not discussed at
16 all on direct examination, nor were they covered on cross-examination.
17 Thirdly, the portions that were discussed on cross-examination obviously,
18 I think, those specific paragraphs can indeed come in. That would be the
19 normal procedure, especially since they go to the veracity of this
20 particular individual. Part of the essence of the cross-examination was
21 not so much to challenge the witness, although that was -- that did occur,
22 to challenge his memory, not necessarily for his veracity but just memory
23 in particular, but was to show that the manner in which the statement was
24 taken, especially where the gentleman had to withdraw, or he vividly
25 recalled seeing Mr. Prlic being in a meeting where Mr. Prlic said that he
1 had issued an order, and that was withdrawn, and this was on the basis of
2 being shown a document. The purpose of that, Your Honours, was to show
3 the technique that is involved by the Office of the Prosecution
4 investigators in order to suggest or encourage a memory.
5 Documents need to be shown to revive a memory or to refresh a
6 memory, but in some instances, the unintended result may be, as it was
7 here, to actually create a memory, it created a memory which at least this
8 gentleman, thanks to the lovely beaches of Scheveningen, during his jog
9 was able to recollect that, yes, indeed, he was not at that meeting and
10 therefore could not vouch for what, if anything, was said by Dr. Prlic, a
11 very, very critical point. So part of the cross-examination, the
12 technique, as it were, was to demonstrate the dangerousness of simply
13 accepting statements when they are prepared in the fashion in which they
14 are. They are not question and answer, question and answer. They are not
15 taken by an objective participant. They are taken by a party. Those are
16 the rules. They are not taken by an investigative judge or even a
17 Prosecutor, say, from a civil law system where they are bound, duty-bound,
18 to ask all of the exculpatory questions as well and to collect all that
20 That's why -- that was the essence. But I don't think that the
21 Prosecution can now stand up and say they want to tender the entire
22 statement. If that is in fact the case, since we don't have at least a
23 witness for Monday or Tuesday, you know, and we have to -- at least we are
24 free for tomorrow the gentleman would need to stay here and then we need
25 to give myself, including my colleagues, an opportunity to take a second
1 bite at the apple as well to cover the areas which weren't covered, and I
2 know for a fact that I was able to receive time at least from the Coric
3 Defence, and from the Pusic Defence that they ceded their time to me
4 because based on the direct examination, there was no need.
5 Now, with the statement coming in, I dare say, not only do I need
6 to spend at least an additional hour with the gentleman, but I'm sure my
7 colleagues would, no doubt, wish to do the same and we need to go into
8 certain other areas because, as I noted, Mr. President, during the
9 briefing session, the proofing session, and again, that wasn't tape
10 recorded but we did receive a detailed account of all the corrections and
11 that was the whole purpose by the way of why I did such a meticulous, if I
12 could use that word with your permission, attempt to show how the
13 gentleman is careful, how he reads, how he prepares his orders and the
14 daily reports to show that he read the statement at the time and yet we
15 have all these errors, including his own title. That was the whole
16 purpose of all of that.
17 So I think, if we are now going to tender all the statement in,
18 because there are other errors as well that I didn't go into because they
19 are not necessary, they are not relevant to this particular case or to the
20 case that I'm having to answer which was the Prosecution's direct
21 examination, I would object. I think this -- we are going into a new
22 procedure and if this is the case, that now the Prosecution can do the
23 direct and then, if the Defence refers to any portions of the statement,
24 the statement can then come in, then I think we need to revisit the rules
25 and we need to rewrite the rules. Because I think we are going into a 92
1 ter approach with full viva voce for the Prosecution and they simply
2 cannot have it both ways.
3 And let me just end with one note, a lesson that I learned from
4 the Blagojevic case taught to me by none ore other than the Presiding
5 Judge, Judge Liu. It was the second or third witness. I didn't get to
6 ask all my questions and I moved for the admission of the statement, the
7 entire statement, at which point I was reminded and properly so, that that
8 is not the procedure here. That if I want something from a particular
9 statement into the record I need to ask it but the whole statement simply
10 doesn't come in, and I think that's the lesson that should be learned
12 But the Prosecution need not leave -- learn anything because they
13 know this already, and even if we were in our own national jurisdictions
14 with the federal rules of evidence, I'm sure the Prosecution would agree
15 with me that he could not tender the entire statement in. He could tender
16 the portions, the paragraphs, which were directly brought up on
17 cross-examination. In fact, it would be the defence that would be
18 offering that as substantive evidence because those were used to impeach
19 the witness. Now, I don't know if my colleagues wish to chime in. I
20 believe my colleague for the Coric team and --
21 MR. STEWART: Yes, we do, as it happens. Well, the Petkovic
22 Defence, we certainly support Mr. Karnavas's submissions that this should
23 be excluded except, and that is the answer, except that very limited
24 extent which Mr. Karnavas has identified. Of course, the particular
25 passages which were referred to in cross-examination have to be admitted
1 to make sense of the cross-examination. It's really as simple as that,
2 but beyond that, in a nutshell, this is an attempt to add wholesale to the
3 examination-in-chief when we are right at the end. We just had the
4 cross-examination. We've just had the re-examination. So we would be
5 starting all over again with this major addition to examination-in-chief.
6 That's simply can't be done.
7 MR. KHAN: If it please Your Honours, the application of my
8 learned friend is vigorously opposed on behalf of Bruno Stojic.
9 Your Honour, in assessing the merits of the Prosecution
10 application one must, of course, have in mind the scale of the statement
11 and the nature and length of cross-examination on the alleged
12 inconsistencies or the scope of the cross-examination. Your Honour, in
13 this matter, the statement is about 20 pages. In fact, I depart with
14 respect from my learned friend's submission that there is even a need for
15 extracts to be put in before Your Honours. I don't object if it's done
16 but the normal course, of course, the normal procedure is that counsel
17 read into evidence in the course of the cross-examination, you said X, and
18 now you say Y.
19 But, Your Honour, if the statement in toto is to be put into
20 evidence, we would, with the greatest of respect, but also with the
21 greatest of force, request that the witness remain and be further
22 cross-examined. Your Honours, I have just walked into this case and
23 Your Honours of course will make their own assessment as to the conduct of
24 each counsel in this case but certainly from what I understand and from
25 what I've seen, at least lead counsel for Mr. Stojic has endeavoured
1 wherever possible to put forward very focused cross-examination and that,
2 of course, is predicated upon the evidence that is elicited by the
3 Prosecution in its case in chief. If the Defence have to
4 cross-examination on a whole plethora of documents and a whole variety of
5 different matters averred to in a statement, these proceedings will never
6 end and, Your Honour, we would be prejudiced significantly.
7 So I do urge and it is our submission that the Prosecution's
8 application should be denied as being unnecessary. To the extent that
9 Your Honours are against me on that, we would ask that the witness remain
10 here and be cross-examined.
11 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I shall be
12 very brief. I join my colleagues in everything that they have already
13 said, and I would especially underline on behalf of the Defence of
14 Mr. Coric, as Mr. Karnavas had said, that we based our decision not to
15 cross-examine this witness on the basis of the direct examination. If we
16 knew that there was a possibility for the statement to be admitted, then
17 we would have opted for cross-examination. But not knowing that such a
18 statement could be admitted and it should be admitted, our client will be
19 prejudiced and he will not have the right to ask this witness about parts
20 of the statement that are of importance and relevant to him. Should the
21 Chamber allow the statement to be admitted, we would ask for additional
22 time as Mr. Karnavas has said.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer.
24 Yes, Mr. Ibrisimovic?
25 MR. IBRISIMOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, thank you. I would
1 just like to say something else. Mr. Stringer said, when he presented the
2 foundation for the admission of the statement, he said because the
3 decision [as interpreted] used it, but if we look at your decision of the
4 28th of April, that is our right. We are entitled to ask and refer to the
5 statement to refresh his memory, so that cannot be a basis for asking for
6 the statement to be admitted.
7 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer, I will give you
9 the floor but listen to what I'm going to say. The Prosecution is obliged
10 by the regulations which say that if you have a viva voce witness, you put
11 questions, the witness answers, and you show him documents. Within that
12 procedure, there is no admission of the written statement. So it is a
13 choice to be made by the Prosecution.
14 A second point: The Prosecution may now, thanks to me, resort to
15 92 ter and the Prosecution may choose in favour of a written statement and
16 informs the parties in advance of making such a procedural choice, and
17 this will gain time and then the Defence knows that it has to
18 cross-examine on the whole document. You started with the viva voce
19 testimony, and toward the end, you are now asking for the admission of the
20 statement. And as Mr. Karnavas has said, you can't have it both ways.
21 The Defence have expressed their legal positions. The Chamber has not
22 deliberated. What would be your response to what has been said so far?
23 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. Based on my experience
24 in the case I think the manner in which the cross-examination of this
25 witness has been unique as compared to the other ones that I've seen and I
1 think it did result -- it obviously resulted certainly in significant
2 parts of the witness statement being read to the witness during his
3 cross-examination, everybody agrees to that. However, I think that the
4 point raised by counsel for Mr. Coric is well taken in that counsel for
5 Mr. Coric, as well as counsel for Mr. Pusic, I know he doesn't figure in
6 this quite as much, that they made a decision to cede their time to other
7 accused and I think it's a point well taken. I would also add that the
8 suggestion made by Mr. Karnavas and I think seconded by Mr. Stewart, that
9 those portions of the statement that were read during the
10 cross-examination, those specific paragraphs be tendered into evidence,
11 and that -- those parts of the statement, together with the witness's
12 testimony about them, would then be the evidence. And that would be
13 acceptable to the Prosecution. So again, we would be tendering the
14 paragraphs that were referred to during the cross-examination of the
15 witness. And those only.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you're modifying now your
17 request, joining on the whole the Defence positions, asking for the
18 admission of only the paragraphs read by you or the Defence, so that is
19 the position now. Of course, the Chamber will deliberate on the matter.
20 So now, sir, your testimony has been completed. On behalf of my
21 colleagues, I wish to thank you for coming at the request of the
22 Prosecution and may I extend best wishes for your return to Dublin. I
23 will ask the usher to be kind enough to lead you out.
24 [The witness withdrew]
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] For a few seconds we will go
1 into private session.
2 [Private session]
12 [Open session]
13 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we are back in open session.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It is 7.00 p.m. I thank
15 everybody, and I wish you a good evening.
16 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.58 p.m.
17 sine die.