1 Monday, 14 January 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.18 p.m.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, kindly call the case,
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is case number
8 IT-04-74-T, the Prosecutor versus Prlic et al.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Today we are Monday, the 14th of
10 January, 2008. I'd like to greet the representatives of the Prosecution,
11 Defence counsel, and the accused. Today we must resume and proceed with
12 our work. I have an oral decision to hand down, and I would also like to
13 stipulate that as far as the upcoming witness is concerned the Prosecution
14 will have two hours, that is part of the 92 ter procedure; and the Defence
15 will have four hours. Each accused will have 40 minutes, which means all
16 in all that would be four hours. As far as this witness is concerned this
17 witness is to testify for a period of three days because this person has
18 recently undergone surgery, he will only be able to testify for three
19 hours each day, which means that we will have an hour and a half, then a
20 break, then an hour and a half again, and we will stop after that. The
21 same will apply for tomorrow and the day after.
22 So that's how we're going to proceed. Now, as far as the oral
23 decision is concerned, I shall read it out very slowly. Oral decision
24 pertaining to the application of Rule 46(A)(i) of the Rules of Procedure
25 and Evidence re: Mr. Karnavas. At the hearing of 9th of January, 2008,
1 Mr. Karnavas used an extremely offensive and intimidating tone vis-a-vis
2 the witness. This attitude required a number of interventions on the part
3 of the Bench to remind Mr. Karnavas that he was to remain calm and in
4 control. Please refer to page 25964, 25965, and 25966.
5 At the hearing of 10th of January, 2008, Mr. Karnavas, whilst
6 saying that he was not asking to have one of the Judges of the Bench to be
7 disqualified as is specified in Rule 15 of the Rules of Procedure and
8 Evidence, complained about some of the questions that had been put by one
9 of the Judges of the Bench which gave him the impression according to the
10 words he used, re: Mr. Karnavas, that there is a fifth Prosecutor in the
11 courtroom. Please refer to page 26045.
12 Afterwards Mr. Karnavas stated that he was mindful of the concerns
13 put to him by his client and was extremely concerned about the fair
14 balance and legitimate judgement which his client was to be a subject of.
15 So please refer to page 26046.
16 The Trial Chamber notes that the behaviour of Mr. Karnavas
17 vis-a-vis one of the witnesses as well as the words he used at the hearing
18 when he compared one of the Judges of the Bench to a fifth Prosecutor with
19 what such a comparison implies is unacceptable. This behaviour is
20 offensive and obstructs the running of the proceedings pursuant to Rule 46
21 of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence.
22 An order was handed down pertaining to the strict observation of
23 order in the courtroom and confidentiality on the 17th of October, 2007.
24 Mr. Karnavas has already been asked to comply formally pursuant to Rule
25 46(A) of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence. The Bench intervened on
1 several occasions and asked him to remain or to have a respectful attitude
2 during the hearing. Under such conditions the Trial Chamber feels that
3 Rule 46(A)(i) of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence should be applied.
4 Consequently, the Trial Chamber has decided not to -- no longer
5 hear Mr. Karnavas as of the 15th of January onwards and thus until the
6 24th [as interpreted] of January, 2008, included. It is only
7 Mr. Karnavas's co-counsel, Mrs. Suzana Tomanovic, who will be able to take
8 the floor at the hearing during this period of time. Mr. Karnavas will be
9 entitled to be present during the proceedings if he abides by this
10 decision and will therefore be able to follow the proceedings and
11 communicate with his co-counsel. The Trial Chamber feels that the rights
12 of the Defence of the accused Prlic have not been jeopardized pursuant to
13 Rule 46(A)(i) of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence.
14 Registrar, you have the floor. Could you give us a few IC
15 numbers, please.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Certainly, Your Honours. The list of documents
17 tendered by Prlic Defence with Witness BF will become Exhibit IC 766. A
18 list of documents tendered through Witness BF by Stojic Defence will
19 become exhibit IC 767. List of Prosecution documents tendered through
20 Witness BF will become Exhibit IC 768 under seal. The list of exhibits
21 proposed by Defence for Milivoj Petkovic will become Exhibit IC 769.
22 Slobodan Praljak's Defence list of exhibits tendered through Witness BF
23 will become IC 770. Prosecution Exhibit list tendered for Witness EI will
24 become Exhibit IC 771 under seal. And list of documents tendered by
25 Defence for Mr. Coric through Witness EI will become Exhibit IC 772, Your
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. I'd just like to make a
3 correction. Regarding the decision that was handed down a while ago
4 there's a mistake as far as the date is concerned. On page 3, line 9, it
5 is not the 24th of January that you should be reading but the 21st of
7 Very well.
8 MR. KARNAVAS: Mr. President, I want to --
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Karnavas, just wait a
10 minute. You will have the floor. What would you like to say?
11 MR. KARNAVAS: First, I thank you for the decision. Second of all
12 with respect to Judge Trechsel, as I indicated, it was my client who had
13 that impression that it was Judge Trechsel that was asking questions every
14 time a point that was scored for the Defence Judge Trechsel would then ask
15 questions that it would appear were in favour for the Prosecution. That
16 was the point. I also made the observation that I noticed it, and that
17 has been a topic of discussions between myself and Dr. Prlic since the
18 commencement of this trial.
19 So I just want to make sure that the impression is correct, the
20 impression, that is, that I left, that it was both myself and Dr. Prlic
21 that felt that this was the case that on many occasions - and this is
22 having looked at the entire transcript from the beginning all the way to
23 this point where questions were being asked, but on that particular day we
24 were quite concerned because the question was directed whether Dr. Prlic
25 had actually or the HVO had invited the gentleman to come to Mostar when
1 that wasn't the thrust of the question. But I accept the Court's
2 decision. I acknowledge my own shortcomings, and I appreciate the Court's
3 understanding. Thank you.
4 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I owe an
5 answer to a Prosecution question with respect to the date when the
6 programme was, or rather, when the video was filmed, broadcast, about the
7 event in Guca Gora, and I said, I gave an answer previously, I answered
8 questions where the video came from. I said it was from Croatian public
9 tuition, that it was broadcast, and that Croatian television received this
10 from an international exchange, that it was filmed by Terry Lloyd for the
11 British programme the News at 10, and the second part was Martin Brand for
12 Sky News, once again a British programme. However, I omitted to give the
13 dates and that was part of the request made by the Prosecution.
14 So with your permission I now have a that information, I have
15 checked it out in your database and can tell you that the event itself in
16 Guca Gora that is discussed there was on the 4th of June, 1993, that's
17 when it took place, and that indubitably follows from document P 2849 and
18 document P 2669. And there are other documents, too, which mention that
19 same date, so I think that that is quite clear and not contestable.
20 Now, as far as the filming is concerned, the British journalist or
21 crew or cameramen were in Guca Gora with BritBat, and we can see that from
22 the exhibit itself, they were there with UNPROFOR, that is, and according
23 to the UNPROFOR document number P 2688, that took place on the 8th of
24 June, 1993, so we must believe that that's when the material was filmed.
25 And that material later on most probably, although I can't give you an
1 exact date, but most probably it was broadcast over British broadcasting
2 on the 11th or 12th of June when it was taken over by the Croatian
3 television through the international exchange, and that is the regular
4 mechanism that this is done. And it broadcast this same footage on
5 Croatian television on the 11th or 12th of June.
6 Now, if the Prosecutor wanted to ask about the authenticity of the
7 material, I would like to remind you that at the beginning of the footage
8 we can see the Croatian television journalist giving an introduction for
9 the footage and it says that it was taken from the international exchange
10 there, and we can provide evidence and proof of that. But if we begin
11 discussing the authenticity of material like that, then of course the
12 Defence would have a great deal of questions to raise with respect to
13 Prosecution material. Thank you.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Kovacic, for
15 having specified this. You have said that this pertains to events that
16 occurred seemingly on the 4th of June, 1993. Yes. If I remember
17 correctly, there was also another video which was shown at some other
18 point which also shows Mujahedin inside the church of Guca Gora. And that
19 video was probably shot after the 4th of June, 1993. I don't have a
20 number to give you, but as I have a good memory it seems that there is a
21 video that was shot after that date which would enable you to confirm what
22 you have just said, that the event in question took place on the 4th of
23 June, 1993, because the video which shows the Mujahedin in the church of
24 Guca Gora was shot after the departure, which we can see in this video or
25 people departing.
1 So we all have ample opportunity to check this. Before bringing
2 in the witness -- into the courtroom I believe that the Prosecution wanted
3 to say something.
4 MR. STRINGER: Good afternoon, Your Honours, and greetings to all.
5 The Trial Chamber's already addressed the issue which I wanted to raise,
6 which was the scheduling for this witness's testimony, and so I have
7 nothing to say at this point.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So let's bring in
9 the witness into the courtroom, please.
10 Before the witness enters the courtroom I would like to tell the
11 Prosecution that the statement which you are going to ask to tender into
12 evidence also discusses other issues like the shelling of Sarajevo. So
13 focus your question only by bearing in mind the indictment, so don't ask
14 questions which are unrelated to the indictment, please.
15 Mr. Stringer.
16 MR. STRINGER: Yes, the plan is to -- I believe that Your Honours
17 as well as the Defence should have in their binders numbered -- the
18 witness statement which has been numbered. And we are actually only going
19 to tender very specific parts of the witness statement as I think the last
20 exhibit in the binder. We're only going to tender those very specific
21 parts of the statement that relate to the items raised by the Trial
22 Chamber in its decision requesting that the witness come.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
24 [The witness entered court]
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, sir.
1 So we are going to take the solemn declaration. If you'd like to
2 stand up, do, otherwise if you prefer you may remain seated. If your
3 health requires you to stay seated, please do.
4 Very well, for the solemn declaration could you give us your first
5 name, last name, and date of birth, please.
6 THE WITNESS: Yes, thank you, my first name is Cedric and my
7 surname is Thornberry and -- I'm sorry, what was the other question?
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Your date of birth, please.
9 THE WITNESS: My date of birth is the 22nd of June, 1936.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] 36 or 26?
11 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It must be a mistake then. In
13 the statement we have it says 1926. What is your current occupation?
14 THE WITNESS: I am a consultant I think is the best way to
15 describe it.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Monsieur, have you already
17 testified before this Tribunal on the events that have unfolded in the
18 former Yugoslavia or is this the first time?
19 THE WITNESS: Sir, this is the first time that I have testified in
20 this court.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. Could you take the
22 solemn declaration, please..
23 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
24 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, sir. You may sit
2 So just some very brief information I'd like to convey to you. As
3 you know, you are, first of all, going to be answering questions which
4 will be put to you by the Prosecution whom I'm sure you met over the
5 weekend or this morning based on written statements which you have made a
6 few years back. The Prosecutor will also show you a series of documents,
7 after which Defence counsel, who are sitting on your left-hand side, will
8 put questions to you as part of their cross-examination.
9 The four Judges sitting before you can also at any time put
10 questions to you. Technically speaking, it is better the Bench put their
11 question after both parties have put their questions, but sometimes in
12 face of -- on the face of a document or in light of a document it is
13 better to deal with the issue straight away.
14 We have been told that your health will not enable you to sit at
15 this hearing for four and a half or five hours, so what we have decided to
16 do, to make sure that you do not get too tired, is to have an hour and a
17 half session, then we will have a 20-minute break, and then another
18 session of an hour and a half, and then we will stop; and we will do the
19 same today, tomorrow, and the day after. This is what we have planned to
20 do, but if at any point in time you feel tired or if you wish to have a
21 longer break please do not hesitate to let us know and to say to us that
22 you would like to have a rest. So this depends on you.
23 If you feel that you want to stop and have a break because you
24 feel tired, do not hesitate to let the Bench know. Be as accurate as you
25 possibly can when you answer the questions that are being put to you. If
1 you don't understand the meaning of a question, do not hesitate to turn to
2 the person who has put the question to rephrase it. The Bench is also
3 there to answer any question you may have.
4 This is what I had to say by way of introduction, and I shall now
5 give the floor to Mr. Stringer, who will lead his evidence.
6 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President. May I just add for the
7 record that the full 92 bis package for this witness is not in the binder
8 and the matter of the mistake on the birth date is dealt with in the
9 original 92 bis package which was originally submitted.
10 WITNESS: CEDRIC THORNBERRY
11 Examination by Mr. Stringer:
12 Q. Mr. Thornberry, good afternoon.
13 A. Good afternoon.
14 Q. And you have -- I see I think you brought a binder with you in the
15 courtroom today which was one that you were looking at this weekend; is
16 that correct?
17 A. That is correct, sir.
18 Q. Okay. And with your permission, I'm going to ask if the usher
19 could actually take that one from you and give you the one that we want to
20 use in the courtroom that's going to have the -- not have the stickers on
21 it and the things that you may have placed on it. And, Witness, if I
22 could ask you just to set that aside for a quick moment and I'm going to
23 ask you questions about a number of the documents that are in that.
24 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, before I begin asking the witness
25 questions, I will provide this reference to the Rule 65 ter summary that
1 we have for Mr. Thornberry.
2 Witness Cedric Thornberry served as the director of civil affairs
3 and later concurrently as the deputy chief of mission for the United
4 Nations protective force, UNPROFOR, and the head of civil affairs as part
5 of the United Nations mission in the former Yugoslavia. In the witness's
6 perception the Serbs, and following closely in their shadow the Croats,
7 were attempting to carve themselves out a large chunk of
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina through ethnic cleansing. The idea that the Bosnian
9 Croats were trying to carve out a piece of Bosnia for themselves was
10 considered just a fact of life; it was not a notion anyone refuted.
11 Around mid-August 1993 the witness travelled to Mostar and visited a
12 hospital in West Mostar and met with HVO officials there. The witness
13 indicates in his statement that during a meeting at that time it was
14 implied that he would be killed if he attempted to visit East Mostar.
15 On the 21st of August, 1993, the witness did enter East Mostar and
16 spoke about the worst thing he had seen in the former Yugoslavia, with the
17 exception of Vukovar, in terms of physical destruction. The witness will
18 modify that statement and clarify it during the course of his testimony.
19 On that day he visited the war hospital of East Mostar where the
20 patients were kept in the basement.
21 He saw wounded persons and amputees including children, people
22 were sometimes three to a bed. A film crew was with him and television
23 coverage of this was shown around the world. The publicity was intense
24 and as a result the Croatian foreign minister, Mate Granic, met with the
25 witness and subsequently said that he and Franjo Tudjman would put
1 pressure on Mate Boban to allow humanitarian aid into Mostar.
2 On the 25th of August, 1993, the witness was part of a
3 humanitarian convoy that was bringing aid into Mostar. On the way to
4 Mostar from Medjugorje demonstrating villagers blocked the convoy. A
5 Bosnian Croat commander had to stand on the APC and tell them all to get
6 out of the way. The witness will also modify and clarify that part of his
7 witness statement as well.
8 The convoy entered East Mostar and unloaded humanitarian aid.
9 When the convoy was to leave, residents blocked the convoy. The people
10 were scared that if the convoy left the HVO would continue to bombard the
11 area. The convoy stayed in East Mostar until the 28th of August, 1993.
12 The people in East Mostar were living in very difficult conditions and it
13 was the witness's impression that civilians were just as much a target of
14 attack as the military. According to the witness, snipers had gone out of
15 their way to attack those through whom they could extract the most morale.
16 Bosnian Croats desperately wanted Mostar as their capital as they saw it
17 as the heart of their state. On major issues such as Mostar, the witness
18 believes it was the Croatian leadership and not the Bosnian Croats who
19 were calling the shots.
20 Q. Now, with that, Witness, let me ask you to take the binder that's
21 in front of you and turn to the last document at the end of it which has
22 been marked with a tab, Exhibit P 10041, P 10041, it's the very last
23 document in the binder, I believe.
24 A. Excuse me, did you say 10041?
25 Q. Yes, sir. If you could just turn that page that's in your hand,
1 that's the exhibit in front of you.
2 A. Thank you. Yes, I have done that.
3 Q. And with that in front of you, let me just ask you a series of
4 questions about that document. Looking at the first page do you see your
6 A. I do.
7 Q. And is this the witness statement that you provided to a
8 representative of the Office of the Prosecutor in May of 1999?
9 A. Yes, but we covered some of this ground in 1999 and updated it
10 more recently.
11 Q. Okay. And then if I could ask you to just turn through the
12 statement. Your initials appear on the bottom of each of the pages and
13 then does your signature appear again at the very end of the document?
14 You don't have to look at each page. If you could just perhaps in general
15 indicate whether your initials appear on it and then your signature's at
16 the end?
17 A. Yes, I confirm those elements.
18 Q. Now, as you've indicated, the statement covers a great many
19 topics, and my question is whether at the time you provided this
20 statement, you answered the questions of the investigator truthfully?
21 A. I believe I certainly did answer them truthfully.
22 Q. Did you answer the questions freely? Was there any coercion
23 involved or were you providing the statement voluntarily?
24 A. I do not remember whether there was any coercion, but I don't
25 believe there was. I was used to sometimes quite difficult circumstances
1 when working for the UN.
2 Q. Okay. And then after your arrival here in The Hague just within
3 the last few days, did you have an opportunity to review this statement,
4 and in particular the specific portions of the statement that you and I
5 discussed over the course of the weekend?
6 A. Yes, I did.
7 Q. And were you given an opportunity then to make any corrections or
8 modifications to those parts of the witness statement that we discussed?
9 A. I'm not quite sure that I remember what the timing was, but I
10 think that we changed the date of my birth.
11 Q. Okay. And then over the weekend --
12 MR. STRINGER: Actually, Mr. President, I'll propose perhaps as we
13 go into the statement I could take the witness to the specific parts that
14 he had comments on because it's a rather large statement.
15 Q. In general, Witness, the parts of the statement that you and I
16 discussed - and if you recall, I can direct you to them - and for
17 everyone's information paragraphs 1 and 5 which relate to your personal
18 history, that's on page 2, that section there. And then turning to page
19 11, page 11, paragraph 42 is a one-paragraph section under the heading of
20 "the warring factions' intentions towards Bosnia."
21 Do you see that?
22 A. Not yet, sir -- yes, I find it.
23 Q. Okay. And then just continuing on, skipping until page 14, under
24 the heading: "Conflict between the Bosnian Muslims and the Croats" --
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. -- which has paragraph number 54 written next to it. Do you see
2 that? It's handwritten.
3 A. I see -- which paragraph did you ask, please?
4 Q. 54.
5 A. And this is on --
6 Q. This is under the heading: "Conflict between the" --
7 A. Yes. All right. Yes.
8 Q. Okay. All right. And then just continuing from that point across
9 to page 15, 16, 17 in which you're talking about your time in Mostar
10 during August of 1993, and then to page 18, which continues down until the
11 next section on Srebrenica, do you see paragraph 72 there?
12 A. I do.
13 Q. Okay. Those sections there that we've -- I've just taken you to,
14 subject to the modifications that we will discuss, if I were to ask you
15 questions and if you were to give this statement again would your answers
16 be the same? Would your information be the same as that contained in
17 these parts of this witness statement?
18 A. I'm certainly not -- I certainly have nothing to say which would
19 directly controvert what is here, but there may be changes in shading I
20 think is the best way for me to put it.
21 Q. Okay. And we'll be talking about these -- a number of parts about
22 this. And so if you see something that you'd like to address in terms of
23 shading, you inform me --
24 A. Indeed.
25 Q. -- and you'll be free to do that.
1 Witness, I'm going to just briefly direct you to paragraph 2 of
2 the -- of this statement which relates to your background and your
3 experience, both before you joined the UN and during your time with the
4 United Nations --
5 MR. STRINGER: I see one of the accused is on his feet,
6 Mr. President.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, I hadn't seen Mr. Praljak.
8 Mr. Praljak.
9 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we don't have
10 the paragraphs in our translation which will make it difficult to
11 introduce the mistakes, or rather, corrections. So could the Prosecutor
12 tell us what the contents are because our copy isn't numbered, the
13 paragraphs aren't numbered, and it will be difficult to compare the two.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, in fact, in the B/C/S
15 translation I see pages but I don't see paragraph numbers.
16 MR. STRINGER: Well, as we always have to do with these witness
17 statements, Mr. President, we have to write in the paragraph numbers by
18 hand, which we've done on the English. It was my assumption that counsel
19 could have done that for the B/C/S versions, but it's my -- it's my
20 intention to take the witness to the specific parts of the witness
21 statement. So I don't think there will be any trouble for the accused to
22 follow along.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Since there must be
24 a corresponding page you can see paragraph 42 and page 11, and this
25 corresponds, for instance, to the fourth and fifth paragraph on page X in
1 B/C/S. Maybe you can proceed this way so that Mr. Praljak can follow.
2 MR. KARNAVAS: The other alternative, Mr. President, would be to
3 take a break so that counsel could number it since the Prosecution did not
4 number. This is not something that we should be doing, it is their
5 evidence. I think the only I think that's fair to Mr. Praljak and to the
6 others is to take a break so we can just go ahead and number it.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer, what do you think
8 of this suggestion?
9 MR. STRINGER: I think I can continue, Your Honour, and we'll just
10 do our best to refer the accused to the B/C/S version. There really isn't
11 that much.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please proceed then.
13 MR. STRINGER:
14 Q. Before we actually turn to some of the parts for modification, I
15 wanted to just briefly highlight your experience within the United Nations
16 system which is indicated on page 2 of your statement, page 2. And
17 particularly in paragraph 4 on page 2 of the English version there is a
18 reference that from March of 1992 until March of 1994 you were the
19 director of civil affairs for the UNPROFOR. And from August of 1992 you
20 also served as the deputy chief of mission for UNPROFOR. Do you see that?
21 A. I do. There are -- is a slight complication.
22 Q. Why don't you go ahead and address that at this time then.
23 A. It has to do with the United Nations names for various functions.
24 I was, in fact, a director of administration and management for the whole
25 of the United Nations worldwide for a fairly short period of time, and
1 then I would have reverted to my internal statement, I think is the best
2 way to try to describe it. So there were two series of administrations -
3 I'm sorry about this - but there were two series of jobs -- job contents;
4 and from time to time I had fulfilled one and at another time I filled
5 another. I doubt whether this is, if I may say so, if this is material,
6 but I thought again I had to try and maintain the absolute accuracy of
7 that remark.
8 Q. Very well. Before we get deeper into your statement, I just
9 wanted to ask you briefly whether in your capacity on behalf of UNPROFOR
10 and civil affairs, whether it was customary for you to receive reports
11 from your subordinates who were working for you in various other
13 A. Yes, I received numerous reports more or less daily.
14 Q. All right. If I could ask you to turn to a different document
15 that's in the binder, which is Exhibit P 01353.
16 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, just to be clear, this is more of
17 the 92 ter phase of it now because I'm going just a little bit beyond the
18 scope of Mostar, but it's going to be a very brief reference.
19 Q. Witness, it's one of the first documents in the binder. The usher
20 might need to help you locate it, P 01353.
21 [Prosecution counsel confer]
22 MR. STRINGER:
23 Q. Witness, do you recognise that document, any of the names on it?
24 A. I think all the names are within my knowledge. If you asked me
25 whether I remembered everything that is in that cable, then I would have
1 to say: No, I cannot do so.
2 Q. Is this a report that you received from a Victor Andreev?
3 A. It appears to be.
4 Q. And then, regarding the info, there is the name "Santana." Is that
5 another name that you recognise?
6 A. That is the name of Aracelly Santana, a United Nations staff
7 member, who was fulfilling the task on assignment as political affairs
8 officer in Belgrade.
9 Q. Okay. Now it appears that this document is from January 1993. Is
10 this the type of report generally that you received from people like
11 Mr. Andreev during the time of your tenure with the UNPROFOR?
12 A. I'm sure it wouldn't surprise anyone if I said that there were
13 many different ways in which my colleagues would have reported to me, and
14 certainly Andreev was one of the most assiduous and detailed in his
15 analyses and sending them to us.
16 Q. In this document there's a reference to the map. It says that --
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. -- referring to the HVO, and I'm in paragraph 1 on the first page.
19 A. I've got it.
20 Q. "They are always quick to assert and announce territories of the
21 'map' which are under their control."
22 Do you know which map that's a reference to or what this is about?
23 A. First, no, I don't know what it's a reference to; but second, I
24 have an awareness -- I had an awareness at that stage of -- I'm sorry, I'm
25 just looking again at this document. I think the content of the statement
1 is fairly accurately set out in the paragraph below that which states one
2 political -- and Andreev was one of our best, most experienced reporters,
3 rapporteur I mean.
4 Q. Very well. If I could ask you to set aside that document, and I'm
5 going to refer you to now the time that you talk about your trip to Mostar
6 which occurred in August of 1993. And again going back to -- in fact I
7 don't know if the usher might be able to help you.
8 MR. STRINGER: It might be faster if we could remove the witness's
9 statement from the binder because I'm going to be asking him to move back
10 and forth between the statement itself and then specific documents which
11 are in it, it's the very last document, 10140.
12 Q. Okay, now, Mr. Thornberry, if I could ask you to turn to what
13 we've marked as paragraph 56 which is found on page 15 of the statement.
14 The statement is the other document outside the binder.
15 A. I'm sorry, I didn't follow what you were saying about that.
16 Q. Okay. All right.
17 MR. STRINGER: You know, I'm going to ask, Mr. President, the
18 usher could stay with the witness. I think it would move things along to
19 assist the witness in navigating the various documents.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Usher, please stay next to the
22 MR. STRINGER:
23 Q. So this is paragraph [sic] 15 of the statement.
24 A. I have paragraph 56 in front of me now.
25 Q. I'm told that this is page 11 of the B/C/S version. Now,
1 Mr. Thornberry, paragraph 56 is sort of the beginning of your trip to
2 Mostar. In August of 1993 you indicate that you were in Split and then
3 came to Medjugorje and then began your meetings there and other activities
4 that you're going to be talking about. In the binder I want to ask you to
5 go to Exhibit P 03858. And I'm going to ask you --
6 MR. STRINGER: And I'm going to ask you for and for counsel I'm
7 going to direct the witness to the press release for the 19th of August,
8 1993, which is with the ERN number ending with 9705.
9 Q. That should be the very first document in front of you there.
10 Okay. Mr. Thornberry, just starting at the bottom of that, do you
11 recognise the name there, Shannon Boyd, who that was?
12 A. Yes, I do.
13 Q. Who was that?
14 A. She was the acting spokesperson for the UN, for UNPROFOR, at that
16 Q. And does this appear -- was it part of her job to accompany you
17 and to issue press releases about the events that were taking place?
18 A. It was often part of her job to do that, but it was relatively
19 unusual for a spokesperson to go to the field rather than staying back at
20 home base and developing their awareness, et cetera.
21 Q. All right. Now, in the third paragraph of this document there is
22 a reference to meetings which occurred on this day. Your name is
23 mentioned, Mr. Andreev is mentioned, members of the Spanish Battalion as
24 well. And then on the HVO side a Mr. Zubak, Mr. Stojic, and a General
25 Tole. And it's indicated here that on this day also you and others went
1 to visit the hospital which was on the west side of Mostar. Do you see
3 A. Yes, I see that in paragraph 3.
4 Q. Now, with the assistance of the technical booth I'm going to ask
5 that -- actually, maybe then I do this by myself. I'm going to play a
6 very short video clip and ask if you can comment on that for us.
7 [Videotape played]
8 "MR. THORNBERRY: Well, I think it's more than a gesture. I
9 think the most important thing that UNPROFOR could do in this area is to
10 do everything possible to have Mostar opened up to humanitarian aid. This
11 city has been undergoing siege and conflict for a very long time. The
12 amount of suffering which is immense here is absolutely unacceptable, and
13 the international community must have an opportunity of bringing in
14 humanitarian aid and helping with its good offices to resolve this local
16 MR. STRINGER: Okay. Thank you.
17 Q. Mr. Thornberry, you're shown there in the clip. I wonder if you
18 could tell the Trial Chamber about this trip to the hospital in West
19 Mostar, how it came about, if you recall at this point.
20 A. First of all, I still -- I still agree with what I was saying
21 there ten years ago. Secondly, as shown in the binder, we were met -- we
22 were caught cold someone said by the information we were given when we
23 came to Medjugorje from Split. We didn't expect anything like that to
24 happen. I had no indication that it would happen. However, we sat down
25 and with a number of colleagues from the political side of the UN, and we
1 went into this and discussed it at length, took information from other
2 people, and began to prepare for a possible and previously unthought-of
3 mission to Mostar itself, West Mostar itself.
4 Q. Let me --
5 A. I hope that -- I hope I made that clear. I will try otherwise.
6 Q. I'll ask you a couple of follow-up questions on that. Who was
7 representing the UNPROFOR civil affairs in the Mostar region at that time?
8 A. We had two colleagues who were there at that time, Mr. Albert,
9 I've forgotten his second name for the moment.
10 Q. Okay. We'll come back to it.
11 A. And another guy called Ed Joseph. These were two principal actors
12 on the ground. Both of them were assigned to the Medjugorje office.
13 Q. All right. Now, as indicated in the press release there that we
14 looked at, there are indications there that you had meetings with various
15 HVO officials on the 19th of April. Do you recall that meeting at this
16 point, what was said or ...?
17 A. I must say quite frankly that after ten years or 11 years, it's
18 very difficult for me to recall individuals and to -- yeah, to recall
20 Q. Okay. I should correct the record, Mr. President, I asked about
21 the 9th of April, apparently, and I intended to ask about the 9th of
22 August --
23 A. 19th of August.
24 Q. 19th of August. Thank you.
25 Witness, then is it fair to say that in general terms you don't
1 have a specific recollection of meetings that took place during this
2 period of time in August 1993?
3 A. That's broadly true, but I do have memories of discussions between
4 ourselves and the other side, and we also discussed in detail shortly
5 after Mr. Granic began to appear on the scene.
6 Q. Okay. I'll ask you about Mr. Granic a little bit later. We're
7 still looking at paragraph 56 of your witness statement, and in that
8 paragraph you state that: "Although the HVO officials we met with did not
9 say this directly, the gist of their response was that they would kill us
10 if we attempted to enter east Mostar."
11 So I should ask you, Mr. Thornberry, then what you can say about
12 that statement at this point, given that, as you've indicated, you don't
13 recall specific meetings with specific individuals.
14 A. Well, in my time peacekeeping for the United Nations in which I
15 perhaps appeared in 15-odd different locations, I was threatened with
16 death with some regularity. It usually meant that the other side was
17 beginning to, as it were, scrape the barrel for their -- a part of it was
18 part of an argument. It may have been true, I didn't take it seriously, I
19 have to be quite blunt about it. I thought it was part of a point in a --
20 a part of a point in a negotiation.
21 I hope that doesn't sound too flippant, but as I say people quite
22 often when they were driven into a corner did react in a way which was
23 maybe exaggerated and which we wouldn't necessarily have paid much
24 attention to.
25 Q. Did -- was the HVO during this very initial part of your trip to
1 Mostar, do you recall whether the HVO in general was supportive or not
2 supportive of efforts to get humanitarian aid into East Mostar?
3 A. Well, the thing is, you see, sir, that the HVO together with
4 everybody else who was in Medjugorje at that time, was a part of the
5 negotiation, a continuing negotiation. And as I said before, I think that
6 that is the basis on which we received their evidence, their statements.
7 They were not to be disregarded, but they were also not necessarily to be
8 given higher worth than they might have been.
9 Q. If I could ask you to turn the page of the exhibit that's in front
10 of you, the press release of -- because we put them in specific order in
11 that binder for you. I'm going to ask that you refer now to the press
12 release for the 20th of August, 1993, and this is with the ERN number
13 ending in 9704 for counsel.
14 Now, Mr. Thornberry, this press release makes reference to another
15 meeting held in Medjugorje at the Spanish Battalion on the 20th of August,
16 1993, meetings with yourself; the SpaBat commander, General Morales;
17 General Milivoj Petkovic, HVO commander; Mr. Bruno Stojic, president of
18 the HVO defence department. And on this point I want to now show you
19 another video clip which is a brief one which is called Thornberry clip.
20 [Videotape played]
21 MR. STRINGER:
22 Q. Okay. Now, apart from yourself, Mr. Thornberry, was there anyone
23 else in the video that you're able to recall or identify at this point?
24 A. I can recall a number of them, but I cannot identify them.
25 Q. All right. I think I heard you mention the name Shannon Boyd
1 there at the earlier part of it?
2 A. Shannon was the press and information acting chief, an American
3 woman who was normally working for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees,
4 but who was in effect in secondment to UNPROFOR.
5 Q. All right. Does this appear to be video footage of the meetings
6 that were held on this day, the 20th of August?
7 A. Certainly so, yes.
8 Q. If I could ask you then to turn again in the binder to the next
9 document, which is marked as 9495. Now, Mr. Thornberry, we -- you spoke a
10 little bit already about some of the reports coming to you, so let me ask
11 you briefly to describe who it was that you were reporting to.
12 A. That was a big question because we had recently changed the
13 special representative, and I don't know whether this -- I think this
14 document related to communication with the new incoming former High
15 Commissioner for Refugees, Thorvald Stoltenberg, and he was the person to
16 whom I normally reported, however, as you will have seen from the
17 documents, the reporting chain was a very complicated one, which certainly
18 I will go into if you wish, but I'm not sure that they would add a lot of
19 information. I don't know.
20 Q. Is this a report that you then prepared and sent to
21 Mr. Stoltenberg, Kofi Annan, and others?
22 A. Yes, certainly Stoltenberg and probably Andreev as well as
23 Ms. Boyd.
24 Q. Now, do you recognise your signature on the document?
25 A. Yes, I do.
1 Q. And does this relate to in paragraph 1 meetings held on the 20th
2 of August, 1993?
3 A. I believe so.
4 Q. Okay. It indicates there: "Meetings here today with Stojic and
5 Petkovic of HVO ..."
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And it's indicated here that they had: "... Agreed to facilitate
8 humanitarian relief convoy Saturday to the Muslim side ..."
9 A. That is what I think this shows, yes.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 A. If I might just add to my answer. I see also that
12 Lieutenant-General Briquemont was also -- I also reported to him.
13 Q. Okay. And then Hayes was a general at the UNPROFOR
14 headquarters --
15 A. He was a brigadier-general, British army, reporting to Kiseljak
16 and to -- and to other senior officers.
17 Q. Very well. Now, if I could take you back to the press release of
18 the 20th of August, which is Exhibit 3858, because in this press release
19 Shannon Boyd is attributing some quotes to you, and I wanted to ask you if
20 you could comment on those. I'm looking at the fourth paragraph in which
21 you state that: "We have expressed to both parties our determined intent
22 to open routes for humanitarian supplies, freedom of movement for
23 UNPROFOR, not only in Mostar but throughout Bosnia-Herzegovina."
24 And then continuing you say: "'Our urgent concern is to have the
25 humanitarian relief programme, which will be required whatever the outcome
1 of the current Geneva negotiations, fully operational before the onset of
3 Could I ask you --
4 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE PRANDLER: I'm sorry, Mr. Stringer, to interrupt you. I do
6 not find in that document which you refer to Exhibit 3858. Is it in the
7 same exhibit what you are quoting now?
8 MR. STRINGER: Yes, it's in 38 --
9 JUDGE PRANDLER: 38 --
10 MR. STRINGER: -- 58 --
11 JUDGE PRANDLER: -- 58, yes, but there are a number of papers in
13 MR. STRINGER: Yes. Your Honour, if you look at the bottom
14 right-hand corner there are some numbers that are stamped.
15 JUDGE PRANDLER: Yes, yes.
16 MR. STRINGER: And if you turn to the one that is stamped
17 00079704, 9704.
18 JUDGE PRANDLER: Okay. Yes, thank you very much, I've found it.
19 MR. STRINGER:
20 Q. Mr. Thornberry, one of the issues, actually, that the Trial
21 Chamber has invited you to give evidence about is the issue of
22 humanitarian aid and access to humanitarian aid. And just keying off of
23 this press release and the quotes that are attributed to you there, could
24 I ask you to address that issue, humanitarian aid, how significant was it
25 to you at this time?
1 A. I'm very happy to try to answer that question because it was an
2 extremely important issue for us. The provision of humanitarian aid was
3 one of the major tasks -- in fact, it was the major task of the -- of
4 UNPROFOR, both within Bosnia-Herzegovina and in the mission area as a
5 whole. And during the time when I think which is most relevant, perhaps
6 from the middle of June and for the next -- certainly the next six weeks
7 was that we were beginning to obtain -- we were given reports, given
8 reports, by our offices in different parts of the country and by the
9 military, who were particularly important on this. And they brought to
10 our attention, essentially to my boss who was Mr. Cot, they brought to our
11 attention the fact that because of interference with the relief columns
12 which was being undertaken -- so far as I could identify, by everybody in
13 that part of the world at that time, I say "everybody," I mean by the
14 various military forces were beginning to use aid, humanitarian aid and
15 medical aid, were using that as part of a negotiation. And this was
16 beginning to bite very hard, indeed, on the situation, the humanitarian
17 situation, humanitarian obligations of the -- of the UN military.
18 So putting it very -- as briefly as I can, this was beginning to
19 be the -- certainly the most important consideration on the part of the UN
20 and the part of UNPROFOR. And we were trying -- we for our part were
21 trying to find ways around the blockades and the -- the blockades which
22 were being run at that time by a number of countries' military, and
23 especially by the -- those who were working in Bosnia. Bosnia was
24 absolutely critical, and I remember one of our generals telling me that if
25 something was not done to break this blockade, that the "spectre of
1 famine," I remember him saying, the "spectre of famine will be all over
2 your country, all over your land, if this is not done." I'm sorry to be
3 so long-winded about this, but it was a very significant thing that was
4 said to us.
5 Q. Was this an issue that was part of the negotiations in Mostar,
6 particularly in respect of East Mostar?
7 A. Yeah, it was very much in the forefront of our preoccupation. We
8 had to break that blockade some way or another, preferably, preferably, by
9 negotiation. The UN on the whole does things by negotiation. We are not
10 a war-making entity; we are a peace force. And that can sometimes be
11 misunderstood, but that is usually the most effective way in any event of
12 bringing home to the countries as a whole, the various countries, the best
13 way of relieving some of the suffering which was being felt by people all
14 over the Balkans.
15 Q. Mr. Thornberry, if you would turn the page to the next press
16 release which is for the 21st of August, 1993.
17 MR. STRINGER: And for everyone else, this is the page -- it's in
18 a different part of the exhibit. It's with the stamped numbers ending
19 9696 continuing to 9697.
20 Q. Now, in this press release Shannon Boyd is writing about a trip
21 that you made with others to the Muslim area of Mostar on the left bank of
22 the Neretva River. And while I ask you or before I ask you to talk more
23 about this -- the information in this press release, perhaps we could just
24 take a look at the next video, the last video clip.
25 [Videotape played]
1 "MR. THORNBERRY: We have to establish some kind of stable route,
2 wherever that comes from, Croat side, Serb side, to get access to this
4 MR. STRINGER:
5 Q. Mr. Thornberry, is that footage then of the trip that you made
6 into East Mostar on the 21st of August, 1993?
7 A. What were the dates again, please?
8 Q. 21st of August, that was the press release that we just looked at.
9 A. Yes, that's the one.
10 Q. Okay.
11 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I don't know if it's time for the
12 break yet or when --
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We shall have a break now. It
14 is just about 20 to. We shall have a 20-minute break.
15 --- Recess taken at 3.38 p.m.
16 --- On resuming at 4.01 p.m.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, the hearing is
18 resumed for another hour and a half. The witness will be able to rest
20 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
21 Q. Mr. Thornberry, just before the break we had looked at video
22 footage of the trip into East Mostar, the -- and in a few minutes I'm
23 going to ask you about a second trip that you made into East Mostar a few
24 days later. But at this point my question is to ask you to inform the
25 Trial Chamber, give some general comments on the humanitarian situation as
1 it existed in East Mostar on those two occasions in August of 1993 when
2 you were present there, the humanitarian condition of the population in
3 East Mostar.
4 A. The situation of the population of East Mostar was, it appeared to
5 me - and I was also told - was very much worse than that in West Mostar.
6 It was evident that people and especially children were undergoing great
7 physical difficulty. One of the problems was that children seemed to be
8 targeted quite often by unidentified snipers. Moreover, the condition of
9 adults in that side of the town seemed on visible -- on apparent view to
10 be quite difficult and to involve the beginnings of -- serious beginnings
11 of lack of nourishment, food, the danger of shrapnel from bombs and -- and
12 the general condition was very poor and apparently getting worse according
13 to our Spanish Battalion APCs who until a little earlier had been running
14 into and out of Mostar.
15 If you have any specific question about that, I would be glad to
16 try to answer. It was a very widespread problem.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I do have a question, sir. I
18 heard very carefully what you just told us, and I remembered the video
19 clip that we saw a couple of minutes ago. I was thinking of these
20 children in Mostar east that were going to get water, some of them were
21 carrying canisters of water or jerrycans. Two things hit me.
22 As I was watching the video, I was able to notice that these
23 children all seemed to be in perfect health and I was able to also see
24 that they had water and that everybody was walking around with jerrycans
25 of water, and I also noticed that people are walking quickly. They do not
1 give the impression of being exhausted as if they had eaten well.
2 So when I listened to you, you're talking about snipers, shooting,
3 so on and so forth, but I am under the impression that a few things are
4 being confused here. One, the population and their survival in terms of
5 everyday life and the difficulty they had in terms of nourishment and so
6 on and so forth. We've been hearing witnesses for two years now in this
7 trial. We've received also listings of humanitarian convoys, not one,
8 two, or ten, but hundreds of humanitarian convoys. We saw lists of
9 convoys leaving from Zagreb going to all sorts of places in
11 Now, a Judge listening to what was going on and a Judge that likes
12 to wonder, to think, to ask himself questions, and I belong to that
13 category of Judges, I do not take everything at face value, I'm just
14 wondering what is the reality of this health situation? Many of your
15 international colleagues testified, and I put these questions to them
16 already, I asked already if somebody died of hunger but nobody told me,
17 Yes, people died from starvation. So what is the real, exact situation,
18 could you please tell us.
19 THE WITNESS: Sir, thank you for that question, and I appreciate
20 your consideration of that matter. I also noticed in the video, in the
21 blow-up of the video, that the children and young people by and large, by
22 and large, looked fairly healthy. Some of them were playing in the
23 street, and they had there evidently not been totally -- their morale had
24 not been seriously affected. One saw this very much indeed with the
25 children playing around the armoured personnel carriers of the Spaniards
1 and otherwise. I am not a doctor. I have no way of making an evaluation
2 of the health of children living in -- under such conditions, and I was
3 very much aware of that when we were in Mostar particularly on the first
4 visit we made to Mostar.
5 We also had a great deal of contact with the doctors, the surgeons
6 and doctors there and also in an area which I'm sure will be referred to
7 Nova Bila, which was a church turned more or less into a hospital. I'm
8 afraid I do not -- I cannot answer that question. Perhaps it might
9 require evidence which I don't have, but I had absolutely no doubt in my
10 mind, having seen in particular children in a hospital room, in a hospital
11 bed, with two other children. When I saw them with amputated limbs
12 looking cheerful into the camera, I thought that there was something
13 seriously wrong.
14 My final point, however, is this: I don't think I have been
15 trying to say, I have been trying to take this in a dispassionate manner.
16 It's difficult with kids, but I have been -- I have been under no doubt
17 that what the doctors were saying to us about the condition of the
18 population and of the children in particular, that they were -- the
19 problem -- I'm sorry, let me say -- let me re-say that. What we were
20 particularly being briefed about was the condition which was beginning to
21 fall upon cities such as Mostar, towns and villages throughout the
22 country. It was not yet in many cases a reality, but it was a threat, a
23 major threat, as testified to us by two in any event of the physicians or
24 surgeons in that part of Mostar. I hope I have given some assistance on
25 this matter, sir, but I cannot be more specific than that.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You have a great deal of
2 experience. Your personal history shows us that you went to Namibia in
3 various parts of the world which were in trouble, and you were able to
4 compare, I suppose, places where we see people suffering from starvation
5 and that live under terrible conditions such as Darfur, for instance. But
6 from what you were able to see in your own experience, what you saw in
7 East Mostar, is there something that you would like to insist on, to tell
8 us. Do you -- can you make a comparison? Would you like to highlight
10 THE WITNESS: Most of my experience has been in the Middle East,
11 and there the problem was shelling rather than famine. Is it possible for
12 me to think about that for a moment -- for a little while, perhaps to come
13 back to it? I should like to be of assistance to the Court in this
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As you wish, sir. Since you are
16 here for a couple of hours you will be able to go back on that answer.
17 But talking about 1993, if I remember correctly, in Somalia there were
18 also problems, famine problems and starvation problems, et cetera. Would
19 you -- were you able to compare what was going on in Somalia and Mostar,
20 in Bosnia-Herzegovina, when you went there?
21 THE WITNESS: Well, both -- the children in both parts of the city
22 in -- I was in Somalia for a fairly short time, about six weeks actually,
23 and I travelled a little bit but not a very great deal into the areas in
24 which there were reported to have been famine conditions. I didn't see
25 those conditions in Somalia, probably because I wasn't there long enough
1 nor was I able to move too far around the countryside for a variety of
2 reasons. I find it difficult to go beyond saying that the unambiguous
3 and -- the unambiguous evidence in Mostar was very much more daunting than
4 anything I saw in Somalia.
5 But if I might think better on that because, as I said, my -- I
6 was also stimulated by what I saw of that film clip, and there were a
7 number of -- a number -- it was a very revealing document I thought.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. We will get back to
9 it. Thank you very much.
10 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
11 Q. Mr. Thornberry, you had pointed out that my last question was
12 somewhat general, and let me try to make it a little more specific on this
13 issue of the humanitarian situation in East Mostar. Could you address
14 specific items such as shelter and the structures as they existed in East
15 Mostar, water, and then thirdly the situation that you found in the
16 hospital on the east side of Mostar, those three points, perhaps starting
17 with the issue of shelter and the physical structures in East Mostar.
18 A. I'll try. I think I mentioned that there did not appear to be any
19 single building in East Mostar which had not been affected by gun-fire.
20 Usually shells, mortars. Sometimes in using anti-aircraft shelling for --
21 as ground strafing. I'm not a military man, I don't know what the
22 definition of it is, but if there were very many different forms of attack
23 on the population which were actually taking place.
24 As regards water, we were told by the medical persons who were --
25 who had remained in Mostar, East Mostar, that the population was obliged
1 to rely upon water from the river, which was heavily polluted and
2 apparently contained many indications of entero -- I'm afraid I can't
3 remember the word exactly, but in effect it was some kind of stomach
4 illness coming from using polluted water. One of the concerns was that
5 typhoid was -- had to be very close by. That's one, two -- sorry. Could
6 you mention to me again the third aspect.
7 Q. The hospital --
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. -- when you visited the hospital in East Mostar.
10 A. Yes, the hospital was truly dramatic or melodramatic perhaps in
11 its -- the manner in which the patients were being treated. My
12 understanding was - and again evidently this is coming to me from other
13 people, not my own direct perception - the condition of the hospitals
14 without electricity, without adequate water, without any of the other
15 major life-giving and life-preserving elements. Blood, for example, one
16 can go through a list of items, many of which were either in shortage or
17 were not, in fact, available at all. I think those are the three major
18 items, but perhaps there might be others which -- to which one can speak.
19 Q. We are essentially talking about paragraph 57 of your witness
20 statement, and this contains one of the modifications or additions that I
21 believe you'd indicated you wanted to make. Yeah, this is your witness
22 statement on page 15. If the usher could assist you, perhaps. Page 15,
23 the second full paragraph where you --
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. You indicated that: "On entering East Mostar," you "were
1 confronted with a situation worse than anything I've ever seen in
2 Yugoslavia with the exception of Vukovar."
3 And the statement reads "in terms of physical destruction," and I
4 believe you had a modification or something you wanted to add to that, the
5 last term of that sentence in terms of the physical destruction.
6 A. This is paragraph 57?
7 Q. Yes. Yes, sir.
8 A. Well, it says that: "We visited the hospital, a building
9 converted for the purpose and found most of the patients in the basement,
10 the safest place. There we found many wounded amputees including
11 children, sometimes three to a bed."
12 Q. In that paragraph did you want to indicate also that you found
13 human and physical destruction?
14 MR. KOVACIC: [Microphone not activated]
15 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
16 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if I may say this
17 before the witness answers. I did not object so far, but my learned
18 friend from the Prosecution went beyond the allowed scope with his
19 question several times. This does not change anything to the meaning, at
20 least until the Prosecutor puts words into the mouth of the witness. This
21 is obviously a leading question. The witness read the question, said he
22 had nothing to add, and nothing should be added by the Prosecutor.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer, do not put words
24 in the witness's mouth; in other words, don't ask him to add something, to
25 add something as to his written statement. You can say, for instance, in
1 paragraph 57 you said this: "Do you confirm what you said," for instance.
2 I'm not quite convinced of what Mr. Kovacic just said, though.
3 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. I'm just trying to bring the
4 witness to a few of the modifications he had previously indicated he
5 wishes to make now, but I won't suggest to the witness again what those
6 would be if he doesn't have anything to say today about that.
7 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if the witness said
8 something to the Prosecution during proofing, then they should have taken
9 the trouble of making a new statement that the witness would have signed
10 if that was supposed to be led as evidence. We have nothing in writing,
11 the witness did not confirm it, I suggest that the Prosecutor move on. It
12 is a fine point in any case, but as a matter of principle I cannot agree
13 that leading questions be allowed to go so far because the next time the
14 same thing will be done on a question which is critical.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, let me summarize. In
16 paragraph 57 you described a hospital in East Mostar, then you describe
17 the city in a general way. Do you have something to modify as to the way
18 you described things in paragraph 57 or would you like to maintain that
19 paragraph without any modification?
20 THE WITNESS: I have no modification in mind and nothing has been
21 brought to my attention this afternoon to persuade me that a modification
22 should be made.
23 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
25 MR. STRINGER:
1 Q. Mr. Thornberry, turning to paragraph 60 of your statement, you
2 indicate that by the 23rd of August there was intense media coverage of
3 your trip into East Mostar and the conditions that prevailed there at the
4 time. And then at paragraph 61 you make a reference to a Mr. Eide of the
5 International Conference for the former Yugoslavia and yourself as having
6 been called by the Croatian foreign minister, Mr. Mate Granic. My
7 question is whether you met Mr. Granic in Zagreb then as a result of this
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And did Mr. Granic indicate a willingness to assist you in
11 organizing a convoy into East Mostar?
12 A. He did indeed.
13 Q. Do you know whether Mr. Granic then subsequently came to Mostar
15 A. He came to Mostar, I met him in Mostar.
16 Q. Can you tell the Court, please, based on your observations to what
17 extent during this time did Mr. Granic -- to what extent, if any, did
18 Mr. Granic have influence over the control of decisions that were being
19 made about Mostar?
20 A. Well, there are two parts of an answer to that question. First of
21 all, Mr. Granic was the foreign minister and he told us, he told me in any
22 event, that he had been -- he had spent some time with his president,
23 Mr. Tudjman, the previous day looking at this situation of convoys of
24 military decisions that were having substantial humanitarian implications
25 and so on. And he said that his president, President Tudjman, now
1 deceased I'm sorry to say, Mr. Tudjman had told Mr. Granic that he,
2 Tudjman, thoroughly supported his position in regard to the movement of
3 convoys and of their content of humanitarian goods and medical goods.
4 So in other words, he had given -- he had given his full support
5 said Mr. Granic, to what Granic was actually doing; that is to say,
6 behaving in a manner that was perhaps very impressive from a humanitarian
7 point of view but would have been rather an unusual position to take up in
8 regard to a democratic government where ministers are usually expected to
9 tow the line.
10 Q. Then the other part of my question was: Based on your
11 observation, the extent, if any, to which Mr. Granic was able to exercise
12 influence or control over the decisions about Mostar.
13 A. I'm not -- I don't think that he went to Mostar or certainly not
14 at that time, but I do believe that he had, as he told us, discussed with
15 his president the previous evening, in other words, the evening of the day
16 when we had been to east and West Mostar, rather, not very fully in some
17 cases -- I'm sorry, I can't remember what the other part of your question
18 was on that subject.
19 Q. Let me direct you to paragraph 63 --
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. -- of your statement and you talk about: "On ... Wednesday, the
22 25th of August," just as you were ready to leave, "Mr. Boban and
23 Mr. Granic came to see us for an hour," and you go on to talk about that.
24 And so again my question is whether Mr. Granic had authority or influence
25 over the decisions that were being made about Mostar.
1 A. First of all, I should say that I noticed only today at lunchtime
2 the fact that in paragraph 63 there is a very serious error. It states
3 that -- paragraph states that -- let me see. 63, it -- the statement
4 appears to say: "This was an aggressive self-righteous, face-saving visit
5 ... for the benefit of the press."
6 I think some of those adjectives are inaccurate, and I'm sorry
7 that I had failed to pick them up on the first time they went around. I
8 would not say those things at the moment with consideration.
9 Q. Let me -- and I'll bring you back to that --
10 A. Right.
11 Q. With respect, I'm still hoping to get an answer to the original
12 question which was whether based on your observations Mr. Granic could
13 exert influence or authority about Mostar.
14 A. Well, he did -- I'm sorry that I haven't made myself clear on
15 that, I should have done. I thought I had, actually, made this fairly
16 clear. Mr. Granic is foreign minister was -- I think he still is foreign
17 minister, and the next sentence is gratuitous.
18 Q. Apart from what you say in the statement, Mr. Thornberry, do you
19 have a recollection now based on your observations at the time what was
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Was Mr. Granic able to exert control or influence over the Bosnian
23 Croat authorities whom you were meeting with during this period?
24 A. Yes, without any doubt.
25 Q. Can you elaborate in what way -- what's the basis of that
2 A. What Mr. Granic told me.
3 Q. What did he tell you?
4 A. He said that he was able to get hold of Boban and that Mr. Boban
5 would find himself obliged to do as Mr. Granic had requested. He also
6 said, however, that it wouldn't require much influence because Mr. Granic
7 was ready to -- either to modify his statement or to withdraw it
8 altogether. Does that answer your question, please?
9 Q. Yes, thank you. And then the final series -- I was going to say
10 it's the final series of questions but it's not quite but we're almost
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [No interpretation]
13 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, Mr. President, I apologise. On the
14 English channel we're hearing your question in French, so I don't -- and
15 nothing's been interpreted up to this point.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let me start from the beginning.
17 What I was saying, on reading your written statement we have a clear
18 impression that in Zagreb because of the media coverage in the area, this
19 is in paragraph 60, you explain that all of this has been publicised in
20 Mostar, the British, the Americans, the Germans are all there, all the
21 television crews are there. And it seems that Tudjman and Granic do
22 something in favour of humanitarian aid that is to be brought to Mostar.
23 Now, you discuss matters with Mr. Granic and Mr. Granic tells you
24 that he is able to convince Boban re: The decisions that have been taken.
25 And you tell us that in paragraph 63 there's a mistake because one is
1 under the impression that Boban and Granic had an aggressive attitude to
2 this. No, this is not what I meant. So a Judge in Tuzla [as interpreted]
3 wonders whether there has been a humanitarian convoy that left from Zagreb
4 with the political approval of Mr. Granic and Mr. Tudjman. And the local
5 authorities, amongst others Mr. Boban and perhaps other people, made sure
6 that the humanitarian aid convoy could move forward. Is this how you
7 experienced things when you were there?
8 THE WITNESS: One moment, please, sir, while I read this.
9 Yes. Thank you. I don't think that there's any question that
10 Boban and Granic had an aggressive attitude. I don't know what happened
11 in private between the two of them. I know that Granic came down to
12 Medjugorje in order to create a different and better situation to the one
13 that had been put forward before. I'm not sure I understand what is meant
14 by the reference to a judge in Tuzla. And then finally --
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Tuzla shouldn't be mentioned
16 here. Nobody ever mentioned Tuzla. In the transcript we can read Tuzla;
17 that's got nothing to do here with what's being said.
18 THE WITNESS: So does that mean I don't need to make any comment
19 on that? Because I have a comment to make.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The aggressive attitude of Boban
21 and Granic, are we to understand that both men were not in agreement and
22 that there was some dispute or disagreement between the two men? What do
23 you have to say about this?
24 THE WITNESS: May I try to answer your question, sir. It is a
25 mistake for me -- it would have been a mistake for me to have had the
1 political approval of Mr. Granic and Mr. Tudjman. I think that is
2 probably true. The word "aggressive" is the one that I object to. I
3 don't think that was the atmosphere which we had, and in any event it is
4 very difficult, sir, if I may say so, to enter into this in detail because
5 presumably the parties would close the curtains, as it were, and be
6 unwilling to discuss what happened between a prime minister -- president
7 and his foreign minister.
8 I would certainly be surprised if that issue was left open. I
9 don't think Granic adopted an attitude of aggressiveness. I think he
10 probably explained to Mr. Boban - and this is supposition, sir - I suppose
11 he would have expected to state to Mr. Boban and others that it was time
12 for him to finish and exit from this issue which was otherwise important,
13 because we do find other references later to Granic's continuing shall we
14 say "liberal" position vis-a-vis his own government and his own president.
15 It was a very unusual action, sir.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] What you're saying sounds very
17 complicated. It's difficult for me to understand. So it's either one or
18 other situation. Either Mr. Granic explains to Mr. Boban that things have
19 been decided and that there will be a humanitarian aid convoy and Boban
20 has to accept this and has his back to the wall, or Mr. Boban is shuffling
21 his feet and does not agree with the decision that has been taken.
22 So as you were in contact with all these people, the decision that
23 was taken to send the humanitarian convoy, did this not give rise to any
24 difficulty; and if it did give rise to any difficulties, why did it and at
25 what level?
1 THE WITNESS: I think Mr. Boban was probably overruled by his
2 president, which is something that I do not find surprising, but which
3 perhaps in the circumstances was rather conclusive.
4 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, Mr. Thornberry, to whom do you refer
5 when you say Boban and "his president"? Who would be the president of
6 Mr. Boban?
7 THE WITNESS: Mr. Tudjman I think would be the president of
8 Mr. Granic. Mr. Tudjman.
9 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Here you spoke of Mr. Boban. Did you mean Granic
10 rather than Boban? Line 7 of page 46 you say --
11 THE WITNESS: Line 7 --
12 JUDGE TRECHSEL: -- "Mr. Boban was probably overruled by his
14 Did you say "Boban" when you were thinking of Granic?
15 THE WITNESS: No, sir, I was thinking of Boban. Mr. Boban was
16 hierarchically subject to the authority of the president evidently, but I
17 think was also less -- had less authority than Mr. Boban did.
18 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Could you --
19 THE WITNESS: It was an unusual situation.
20 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Could you tell the Chamber what according to your
21 recollection the position of Mr. Boban was formally?
22 THE WITNESS: I think he was the head of government of the
23 Bosnian -- the Bosnian authorities. He was -- he had the responsibility,
24 the authority, to deal with those authorities and to, as we see perhaps in
25 this occasion, to present this issue to his president, Mr. Tudjman, and to
1 say to Mr. Tudjman, I have talked now to Mr. Boban and he sees that he
2 could or should follow the line which I am -- I am taking. Sorry if I'm
3 using a lot of words. I suspect I'm making this much more complicated
4 than it is.
5 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me for having interrupted you, President.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You seem to say that Mr. Boban
7 was a subordinate of Mr. Tudjman in your mind. Mr. Boban has a president
8 above him, and that's Mr. Tudjman. That's what you seem to be saying.
9 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir, exactly.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But question, in that case
11 Mr. Tudjman is president of the state which is called the Republic of
12 Croatia; Mr. Boban is a citizen of another country which is called Bosnia
13 and Herzegovina. So how do you establish a connection between the two?
14 THE WITNESS: My understanding, sir, is that the situation in that
15 part of the world was a very complicated one with different authorities
16 and different capacities. This is the only way to be able to explain
17 Mr. Tudjman's attitude and the attitude of Mr. Boban and these are the
18 facts of life in that particular part of the world at that particular
19 time. As I say, it is irregular to anyone who has a clear or determined
20 adherence to the rules of democracy or of parliamentary democracy. We
21 don't have a parliamentary democracy situation here, but we do have
22 clearly different sources of authority. That's what I'm trying to say.
23 I'm not sure that it's ...
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, we have understood
25 what you have said.
1 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Still I would like to return to this paragraph
2 63. Frankly, I do not know what you are saying now. You have said a bit
3 vaguely that you withdrew some objectives that you would not put in
4 anymore, but are you still saying that the visit Messrs. Boban and Granic
5 paid to you or paid to East Mostar was a gratuitous act, a show, a [French
6 spoken] for the press, or do you take that back and accept that they
7 visited this because it was an area of problems, and they had
8 responsibility and took their responsibility?
9 THE WITNESS: I would certainly endorse the second point of view
10 that you mentioned, sir. What I found in this paragraph when I read it
11 regretfully for the first time today was use of language which I would not
12 have -- I would not have deployed. It is too crass.
13 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
14 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
15 Q. Mr. Thornberry, just one follow-up question on this point that the
16 Judges have been asking you about. I'm looking at the transcript at the
17 top of page 47 which you were asked what, according to your recollection,
18 was the position of Mr. Boban formally. And you said: "I think he was
19 head of the government of the Bosnian authorities." This is in the
20 transcript, Mr. Thornberry, it's not in the statement. It's just a
21 follow-up to one of the responses that you just gave. So my question --
22 you had indicated that: "He was head of the government of the Bosnian --
23 the Bosnian authorities."
24 My question is whether you can provide any more specificity there.
25 Was there any particular element within the Bosnian authorities that he
1 was in charge of or head of?
2 A. Well, thank you. I'm not sure that I can go beyond what I've
3 actually said in paragraph [sic] 47.
4 Q. Okay.
5 A. I know what he himself described himself as, and that was the head
6 of the authorities. I think we -- I think we have correspondence with him
7 which actually confirms that, but I -- to be very frank, I don't know that
8 I can go behind what I think he actually stated to us. It didn't -- what
9 it did do was to place the responsibility on Mr. Granic and Mr. Granic was
10 the main, the principal, actor in this situation I suppose with the UN
11 that they were undoubtedly in charge of the event. Provided that, let me
12 again be blunt, provided that the generals who were under his authority
13 complied with decisions which Mr. Boban and Mr. Granic took. That is
14 another question and perhaps it's one of some interest.
15 Q. Okay. Let me -- I'm going to shift gears now because we're just
16 sort of starting to touch upon the issue of the convoy of 25 August 1993,
17 and I'm not going to ask you to go into the details of the convoy as they
18 are set out in your statement. But there is one clarification I'd like to
19 ask you about. On page 16 of your statement at the bottom, paragraph
20 65 --
21 A. I'm sorry, do you mean the --
22 Q. Yeah, perhaps the usher could assist you with turning to page 16,
23 paragraph 65 of the report --
24 A. Got it, thanks. Thank you.
25 Q. -- where you indicate that the convoy was finally underway and it
1 comprised about 50 trucks. And then the statement continues to the next
2 page where you indicate that: "Within a mile we were halted for an hour
3 by demonstrating women." You make reference to a Mr. Stojic there and
4 then continuing you make reference to Citluk and a Bosnian Croat
5 commander. I wonder if you could just tell the Trial Chamber, please,
6 what you recall now about the incident or incidents referred to in this
7 paragraph in which the convoy was stopped and then was allowed to proceed.
8 A. Well, that was what happened indeed. The convoy set off from
9 Medjugorje at perhaps around 1600 hours in the afternoon, perhaps 1600
10 hours in the afternoon, but when it reached to Citluk the -- it seemed as
11 if an organized demonstration was taking place on the part of the
12 villagers and that demonstration was against us and it was intended
13 apparently to prevent us from moving forward and instead holding us --
14 keeping us still. I don't exactly know why it would be speculative for me
15 to enter into that particular decision.
16 I am not sure, and though I was there, what Mr. Stojic -- who he
17 was and what he was doing at that point. I was imprecise in my knowledge
18 of the local authorities in Bosnia at that time. I wasn't very much
19 involved with the events of that kind except in regard to the convoy and
20 to some other actions. The villagers began to throw stones at the
21 convoys, and the military -- my military colleagues, the Colonel Morales
22 and others were becoming quite nervous - well, so was I - as to what was
23 going to happen next. In fact, after about an hour, as I remember it,
24 maybe an hour and a half, a Bosnian officer came from the houses around
25 Citluk, the main street through Citluk, and leapt up on the bonnet of an
1 APC, I think it was an APC, it might have been a regular vehicle, a
2 command vehicle for the convoy, I don't remember that exactly. But they
3 climbed up on the -- or he climbed up on the truck. The crowd applauded
4 him and said, Good for you, sort of thing, but they did disband and we
5 proceeded to the airport where we were apparently going to have to spend
6 the night because we were very late and it was already dark. I don't
7 think I can remember very much more about it than that.
8 Q. Just one point of clarification. You indicate that a Bosnian
9 officer emerged, and we have to be more specific about whether you're
10 talking about a Bosnian Croat or a Bosnian Muslim or a Bosnian Serb.
11 You've indicated that -- this in paragraph 65 of your statement, but if
12 you could specify.
13 A. I believe he was a Bosnian Croat, senior officer.
14 Q. Okay. And do you recall as you sit here today who that was, who
15 the person was that came and spoke to the crowd?
16 A. I'm sorry, no, I cannot remember.
17 Q. Okay.
18 A. And if I were to suggest otherwise, it would be pure speculation
19 I'm afraid.
20 Q. You've touched on this briefly already, but I know that it's
21 something that --
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just a minute, Witness, please.
23 If the person who climbed on the vehicle was in this room, were in this
24 room, would you recognise him? If the person who jumped on the bonnet
25 were in this room, would you recognise him?
1 THE WITNESS: I doubt it. I think probably not, not more than 20
2 per cent chance.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
4 MR. STRINGER:
5 Q. In paragraph 69 of your statement which is on page 17, you've
6 touched on this already, but I'd like to ask you to address this
7 specifically, the issue of sniping. In this paragraph you talk about
8 sniping and your impression that the civilians were equally targeted. My
9 question is to ask you to tell the Trial Chamber what you saw yourself and
10 what you experienced in relation to sniping in East Mostar and on what
11 basis you form your views about sniping as set out in paragraph 69.
12 A. I wasn't hit by a -- strike -- a sniper and I didn't, in fact, see
13 any incident involving sniping. However, the military on whose expertise
14 I was throughout dependent, warned me of certain areas in Mostar into
15 which I should not venture other than under armour. And I was told by
16 them to beware of these areas, and if I did enter into them I might very
17 well be injured or -- at best. The --
18 Q. Excuse me --
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. When you say the military --
21 A. Yeah.
22 Q. -- could you specify which military.
23 A. I mean the colonel and captains and senior officers of the -- of
24 the military presence who were giving -- who were driving us and giving us
25 advice. They told me that if I did cross these areas safely, it would be
1 remarkable and they said, Well, if you are by any chance left out for any
2 reason, if on some -- in regard to some action or another you are being
3 left out or if you are talking to radio broadcasting somewhere in the
4 west -- western Europe, that I should try to take evasive action as we
5 moved along.
6 There was a phrase used that has remained in my mind and that was
7 the reference to Sarajevo a hundred or so kilometres away and the phrase
8 used was: The Sarajevo sprint, the Sarajevo sprint, that is to say
9 running at full pelt, head down in a zigzag format, the Sarajevo sprint.
10 Q. Okay.
11 A. It was not apparently completely successful because it was
12 apparently the main -- the main problem there was in terms of small arms
13 and bombardment.
14 Q. Mr. Thornberry, my last exhibit is in the binder at 4673, if you
15 could turn to 4673. Do you recognise your signature on this document,
17 A. This is my document, yes.
18 Q. It's a report from the 1st of September, 1993.
19 A. That sounds quite plausible. I don't remember the date, but that
20 sounds right.
21 Q. Do you see the date there under your signature?
22 A. Yes, yes.
23 Q. Okay. Now, there's a reference in your statement to the Nova Bila
24 hospital, and my question is simply whether after then the convoy went
25 into East Mostar, did you subsequently travel to the hospital that was at
1 Nova Bila?
2 A. I did.
3 Q. And paragraph 2 of your report here indicates that you're heading
4 back to Zagreb. So does the 1st of September then essentially bring to a
5 close your involvement or your direct involvement in these events in
7 A. No, because the -- it led to a new chapter, as it were, in this
8 horrifying story. Nova Bila was a church its congregation is not -- was
9 not a congregation but a -- but it was a series of the -- in the body of
10 the church the pews had been pulled together so that they lay alongside
11 one another and the patients lay on those wooden pews. I had an
12 involvement in visiting, as I had pledged to do, in visiting Nova Bila,
13 but once I got there it was a very interesting and revealing, though still
14 horrifying, location.
15 And after that, the lead-on after that was -- and it was, I
16 thought, in a way the most important thing that I had to do there was
17 because the underlying object was to try to get the parties to agree to a
18 new basis of relationship at that time; namely, to take, with their
19 agreement of course, children and adults to safe havens, I would use that
20 phrase I think, in various adjacent parts of the country, i.e.,
21 Bosnia-Herzegovina and also, I think, Croatia.
22 And these -- the -- it was necessary in my opinion and in the
23 opinion of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and also of the
24 International Committee of the Red Cross, all of whom I consulted on the
25 matter, and the outcome of this was the beginning of a new air-lift to
1 remove people from -- patients seriously wounded or sick patients, to have
2 them removed from that area to other areas which were, in fact, safe and
3 which had medicaments and which had medical staff to deal with these. So
4 that my action was after that began. My direct involvement continued
5 after that began but very difficult -- very quickly afterwards other
6 problems cropped up in regard to that Nova Bila location.
7 Q. And then were you ultimately able to achieve some medical
8 evacuations, both from Nova Bila and the hospital in East Mostar?
9 A. Yes. Yes.
10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Thornberry, for your evidence.
11 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I have no further questions.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I do have some follow-up
13 questions. When we look at your written statement that also talks about
14 different topics, I noticed that you met many political figures of the
15 region, Izetbegovic, Milosevic, Mladic, Karadzic.
16 THE WITNESS: Yes.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As well as some other political
18 figures. Now, what I would like to know is I would like you to tell us
19 something about Tudjman and Boban. When did you or how many times did you
20 meet Tudjman, to begin with him?
21 THE WITNESS: 20, maybe, 25 times. I'm not too sure about that,
22 might be more, might be a little bit less.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. And what about
25 THE WITNESS: Boban I met only perhaps four, five times. I
1 understood later that he was quite unwell and he has, indeed, passed away
2 in the meantime. But I didn't know him well at all because -- essentially
3 because I didn't have very much involvement with the -- the fine print, as
4 it were, of the relationship.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In 1993 your main office, where
6 was it, was it in Zagreb?
7 THE WITNESS: Our main office was technically in -- no, no, it was
8 in Zagreb. We had, however, a further, and both military and civilian
9 office, at Kiseljak to the west I think of Zagreb.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. You yourself went to
11 Bosnia and Herzegovina on few occasions. I saw that you went to Vitez,
12 you went to Mostar. During that period, how much time did you spend on
13 the ground, how many days to speak your terminology, to use your terms?
14 THE WITNESS: My goodness, that's difficult to remember that off
15 the top of my head. I will commit myself, however, and say perhaps
16 two-thirds -- perhaps three-fifths of my time was spent outside Zagreb
17 usually dealing with matters coming to me from other areas that were --
18 with other areas.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. I didn't have any
20 further questions for you. It is ten past 5.00. I was told that we have
21 to finish the hearing of today at 5.32, so we would have some time left.
22 Would the Defence like to finish their cross-examination or wait
23 until tomorrow?
24 MR. KARNAVAS: I'll start, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
1 Cross-examination by Mr. Karnavas:
2 Q. Good afternoon --
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Karnavas, you have until
4 5.32. If you are not done, since you have 40 minutes, your colleague will
5 finish tomorrow.
6 MR. KARNAVAS: I understand.
7 Q. Picking up where his President -- the President left off, in
8 looking at your statement as I understand it you were in country more or
9 less for approximately two years, March 1992 until March 1994. Is that
11 A. Maybe February.
12 Q. February --
13 A. February of 1993, yes.
14 Q. Okay. But more or less -- up -- approximately two years?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Okay. And looking again at your statement, it would appear that
17 at least initially your primary focus had to do with Security Council
18 Resolution 743 that dealt primarily with Croatia, correct?
19 A. I certainly dealt with mostly Croatian issues, yes.
20 Q. Right. And when we're talking about the Croatian issues, we're
21 talking about as a result of the JNA attack, situation that was happening
22 in the Krajina, that's what we're talking about, correct?
23 A. Well, not only that.
24 Q. Well --
25 A. We also have to look at the situation in the sectors, all of which
1 had different consequences --
2 Q. Right.
3 A. -- none of which were good news.
4 Q. When you say "consequences," you're referring to, for instance,
5 humanitarian issues, refugee issues?
6 A. Yes, also the practice of expulsion of populations.
7 Q. And when you say "expulsion," who was -- is this by the Serbs
8 expelling Croats or vice versa?
9 A. Both of those.
10 Q. Okay. Now, it's -- it says over here in your paragraph number 8
11 you say that initially the assessment by the colleagues in New York was
12 for you folks to put your headquarters or to have a basis in Sarajevo
13 because it would be invidious to have headquarters in either Zagreb or
15 A. That is correct.
16 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, Mr. President. I apologise for the
17 interruption. I'm looking at the Trial Chamber's decision on bringing
18 this witness here which laid down limitations on both direct and
19 cross-examination, and it appears to me that this question goes beyond the
20 scope of the Trial Chamber's ruling on cross-examination. I say that only
21 because I limited my direct in an attempt to conform to the Trial
22 Chamber's decision, and I believe that counsel should be held to the same
23 limitations that we've adhered to.
24 MR. KARNAVAS: I was under the impression that the Trial Chamber
25 was seeking the truth. If I mistook that impression, then fine, I'll move
1 on. But I don't see how I can possibly jump into something without laying
2 a foundation. The reason for that is this: At some point, as we all
3 know, the move out of Sarajevo, it's my understanding, and they're located
4 in other places, but he uses the word invidious, and I wanted to know why
5 invidious. Was that because you wanted to demonstrate impartiality, was
6 that the purpose?
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just one moment, please. To
8 give an answer to Mr. Stringer's objection. The decision that had been
9 handed down on 15 November 2007, I would like to read it out to you, it's
10 paragraph 54. It's a very long decision but this is what was said: "The
11 cross-examination has to be limited to the subjects or the topics which
12 are relevant when it comes to the indictment with regard to the
13 municipality of Mostar, including its mission to Mostar from mid-August
14 1993, the restrictions to the access of international and humanitarian
15 organization to Mostar east in the month of August 1993, the sniping on
16 the population of Mostar east, the control exercised on the Republic of
17 Croatia regarding all the decisions relating to Mostar, as well as the
18 meeting on the 19th of August, 1993, with official representatives of the
20 This is what we had set out in that decision. These are the
21 limits. Maybe your question is part of those limits, but once again maybe
22 you should reiterate your question.
23 MR. KARNAVAS: I'll rephrase Your Honour, I'll rephrase. I don't
24 wish to have my time taken up with preliminary matters.
25 Q. If we go to paragraph 39, sir, this may assist the Trial Chamber,
1 I hope it does. It says: "Personally I did not pay significant attention
2 to Bosnia-Herzegovina until the beginning of 1993 having to focus on the
3 issues within Croatia which as I saw more political."
4 So at least from paragraph 39 it would appear from 1992 that you
5 were there. It wasn't until sometime in 1993 that you actually began
6 focusing a little bit on Bosnia-Herzegovina.
7 A. Well, that was me --
8 Q. We're speaking about you, sir, we're not speaking about somebody
10 A. We had approximately 15 general officers in our area of
11 responsibility, and that meant that we had the ample opportunity of
12 demarcating, of identifying people as against particular functions, one of
13 the functions which I was given was to try and get a Joint Commission to
14 look at the whole question of both -- the whole question of
16 Q. Right. But again -- and I don't mean to be disrespectful, but I'm
17 not speaking -- I don't have 15 other people here I'm cross-examining, I
18 have you and I'm going through your statement. So that's what I'm trying
19 to cross-examine you on your statement because we're here to seek your
20 knowledge, whatever you have.
21 A. By all means I shall try to facilitate you.
22 Q. Right. Thank you, sir.
23 Now, you say that at one point, and this was brought out on direct
24 so I think it's safe enough for me to go into it on cross, on paragraph 42
25 you indicated or it was indicated that you said: "My perception was that
1 the Serbs and following closely in the shadow of the Croats were
2 attempting to carve themselves out a large chunk of Bosnia and
4 And then if we go to paragraph 55 you say that: "The idea that
5 the Bosnian Croats were trying to carve out a piece of Bosnia themselves
6 was considered just a fact of life. It was not a notion anyone refuted."
7 My question to you, sir, is: Since you were there since 1992 in
8 March, were you aware of any of the international negotiations that were
9 going on and any of the particular plans, such as the Cutileiro Plan?
10 Were you specifically aware of the contents and what was being pushed
11 actually by the international community?
12 A. I was aware of a number of attempts to gain -- to gain peace, to
13 achieve peace.
14 Q. Well, if the Cutileiro Plan, for instance, called for three
15 regions, would it be Mr. Cutileiro who was actually trying to carve out
16 Bosnia and Herzegovina so that the three constituent peoples would each
17 have their own region within a sort of weaker state the way it ended up
18 with the Dayton accords? Would you characterize Mr. Cutileiro as trying
19 to carve up Bosnia and Herzegovina, yes, no, I don't know --
20 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, and I apologise for the interruption.
21 This is beyond the scope of the Trial Chamber's ruling on the scope of
22 cross-examination. I've limited my direct, and I think it's unfair to not
23 hold counsel to the same limitations.
24 MR. KARNAVAS: I wish to be heard. I wish to be heard and make my
25 record, Mr. President. I understand that the Trial Chamber may think
1 otherwise, but you did allow the gentleman to go into this paragraph. He
2 mentioned that -- in fact, it was Mr. Stringer himself that read out the
3 summary and paraphrased. So now I'm going back and I am questioning him
4 about the very same issues that were raised by the Prosecution. So how is
5 it that I'm going beyond the scope?
6 If this is going beyond the scope then I should sit down because
7 obviously the Trial Chamber does not wish for me to conduct a
8 cross-examination. This is part of -- this is a response. The same thing
9 goes on re-direct. Re-direct is limited to what comes out on cross. So
10 it's the same principle that's being applied here.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. And Mr. Stringer,
12 Mr. Karnavas says that while summarizing you mentioned in a certain way
13 the topic that he is raising now, so he believes that during his
14 cross-examination he can come back to what you mentioned in the summary.
15 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I've stated my objection and I'll
16 clearly accept any decision the Trial Chamber gives on this question, but
17 I think it's worth bearing in mind that there are limitations have been
18 placed that I viewed applied to me as well.
19 MR. KARNAVAS: If that were the case, Your Honour, I presume the
20 limitations were [Overlapping speakers] --
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please put your question --
22 MR. KARNAVAS: [Previous translation continues]... If limitations
23 were imposed and he knew those limitations, why did he go into them?
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Put your question, Mr. Karnavas.
25 Since the --
1 MR. KARNAVAS: Going back to --.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] -- The Cutileiro Plan ...
3 MR. KARNAVAS:
4 Q. Going back to paragraph 55, you go on to say: "Saying this, I was
5 almost completely bogged down in Croatia and did not really focus on
6 Bosnia -- on Bosnian issues. Now, I mentioned this so maybe this might
7 assist you in answering the previous question, and I'm asking you
8 concretely now. Could you please tell us what exactly was the Cutileiro
9 Plan since you were in country at the time or shortly thereafter? What
10 did it envisage and what were the respective positions, if you know. If
11 you don't know, I'll move on.
12 A. I don't think I know. I don't think anyone merely because of
13 their presence in UNPROFOR knew what was happening. The Cutileiro Plan
14 fell within the ambit of the European community, not of the United
16 Q. And I take it, sir, while you were there doing whatever you were
17 supposed to be doing and because of all the things that were happening you
18 were not keeping track what was happening in Geneva with the negotiators?
19 A. Well, I was, actually.
20 Q. Okay --
21 A. At that stage -- let me be precise, please. What date are you
22 talking about because that's important in the answer.
23 Q. Well, I was going to get -- my next question is so then we go to
24 the Vance-Owen Peace Plan. So surely now you're going to tell me the
25 exact details of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan and perhaps you can explain to
1 us where in the Vance-Owen -- what did the Vance-Owen Peace Plan call for
2 and how does that jive, how do you reconcile that with your bold statement
3 that the Croats were trying to carve out a piece of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
4 A. Nobody challenged that; that was the reality.
5 Q. What was of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan, sir? Could you please tell
6 us what were the basics of it. And you need not look at the Prosecution.
7 He cannot help you.
8 A. I'm looking to see whether anyone is going to say anything to you
9 about this --
10 Q. To object?
11 A. -- because I don't know what the detail of the Vance-Owen Peace
12 Plan was, it hasn't been publicised. By the time this document comes
13 into -- becomes implemented, only then does one begin to know what is
14 going on in the Vance-Owen, Stoltenberg, and the number of -- there were a
15 different layers of negotiation. This is very untidy, especially for
16 lawyers, but this is the reality.
17 Q. Okay. Untidy in the sense that it's pretty complicated and
18 convoluted and not everybody has the answers?
19 A. Well, that's part of the problem.
20 Q. Okay. And it's fluid situation, would that be correct? Fluid in
21 the sense that things are moving along and pretty difficult to know at any
22 given moment what is happening?
23 A. Yes, but that's is the job of a political operation, especially of
24 a peacekeeping operation, is to keep track of those.
25 Q. Now, you went to Mostar, you went to East Mostar and you were
1 asked specific questions again, I think it's within my right of
2 cross-examination, you talked about shelters, physical structures, and
3 water in East Mostar. My question, first of all: Do you know what was
4 happening in Mostar in 1992?
5 A. No.
6 Q. Okay. Did anybody explain to you that in 1992 Mostar was shelled
7 by the Serbs?
8 A. I knew that, yes.
9 Q. Okay. You knew that.
10 THE INTERPRETER: Kindly slow down, Mr. Karnavas.
11 MR. KARNAVAS: I apologise.
12 Q. Did anybody explain to you or show you for comparison purposes
13 which structures had been damaged by the Serbs versus which structures
14 were being damaged now by the Croats?
15 A. Did they have a little flag on them you mean?
16 Q. No, I'm not being facetious nor flip, sir. I'm asking you because
17 you went there and you went around with the media and there's a purpose
18 why I'm asking this question because you went around with the media and
19 you wanted to bring out attention and you indicated that not since Vukovar
20 had you see anything of the sort. And I'm asking you did anybody point
21 out to you, because obviously you were totally unaware of the destruction
22 and havoc that had been suffered by Mostar, but did anybody actually point
23 out to you in East Mostar what the Serbs had done so you could say, Okay,
24 now I know the extent of the Croats what they're trying to do, did anybody
25 point that out to you?
1 A. That's a very good point and the answer is no I don't think anyone
2 gave me an overall picture, they gave me partial pictures -- pictures of
3 particular areas of destruction.
4 Q. Okay. All right.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Sir, very briefly. We saw the
6 video not long ago, we see streets on that video, we see buildings with
7 some holes on the walls, and the question that Mr. Karnavas is asking you
8 is the following and I asked myself that same question when I looked at
9 the video. How could somebody know what happened -- how can somebody make
10 a distinction between what was caused by the Serbs and what was caused by
11 the Croats and the Muslims. The question is an excellent one, since that
12 is also the question that I asked myself. You were in a city. Combats
13 took place in that city with the Serbs as well, so how can you, you are an
14 authority of course, how can you make the distinction as to who did what
15 to whom?
16 THE WITNESS: I would have to think about that for a while because
17 indeed the condition of the city was appalling when we entered it. Our
18 Spanish friends, our colleagues who did a great deal of the ground work,
19 they pointed out to me and to others when they were -- when their task was
20 to brief us, they told us what area and amount of devastation had been --
21 had taken place, but they said, This is only partial, this is only
22 limited. That's the best I can do, I'm afraid, sir. I can't re-write
23 history on that subject or at all.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
25 MR. KARNAVAS: [Microphone not activated]
1 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
2 MR. KARNAVAS:
3 Q. You were asked again about Nova Bila. I'm just touching --
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. -- a little bit. My colleague will finish up on the cross
6 tomorrow. But -- now this was, I take it, your first time in Central
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Okay.
10 A. I think -- I'm sorry, I beg your pardon. I think I made a visit
11 to Vitez at one point but there were very few visits on my part to Central
13 Q. But as I understand it your visit to Vitez had I think taken place
14 around August of 1993 if I'm not mistaken?
15 A. A little bit earlier than that. I can't remember exactly either.
16 Q. Okay. I'll find it here in a second but in any event: Now you
17 say in your statement that this was a media circus, and this caught my
18 eye, and I noticed that before you corrected yourself you said it was
19 crass, that was the word that you used, in the way someone, whoever wrote
20 this statement out for you to sign, put those words down there for you to
21 adopt. But was it your intention to adopt this phrase, that this was --
22 or this sentence that this was also a media circus?
23 A. No, it certainly wasn't any part of my intent to do that.
24 Q. Okay. And I take it the situation as you say: "My impression of
25 Nova Bila was that while it was not quite like Mostar it was still grim,
1 impoverished and unhygienic."
2 A. Sorry, please could you say that again because I think I missed
3 out on something.
4 Q. Paragraph 70 you say: "My impression of Nova Bila was that while
5 it was not quite like Mostar, it was still grim, impoverished and
6 unhygienic -- improvised" I'm sorry --
7 A. Improvised, yes I'm sorry. I've got it here "improvised and
9 Q. You stand by that?
10 A. Otherwise it says the things that are in that paragraph.
11 Q. And you stand by that?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. The situation was pretty bad?
14 A. It was pretty bad.
15 Q. And would it be fair to say that for the Bosnian Croats, that was
16 a concern, that essentially the other side, the Bosnian Muslims, were
17 allowing this situation to occur, and this is why your assistance was
18 being sought, to alleviate this situation?
19 A. Well, it was to make it possible for people to return and live in
20 peace in their own hometown.
21 MR. KARNAVAS: Okay. All right. I think that that's all I have
22 for right now. We reserve the rest of our time for tomorrow in keeping
23 with your earlier ruling my colleague -- and just I don't know if we have
24 -- I hope we'll have 30 seconds I would like to say something on the
25 record, Your Honour, but outside the witness's presence. I don't think
1 it's necessary for the witness to hear it.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. You will be able to
3 rest now. The hearing is adjourned. Tomorrow we will resume your hearing
4 at quarter past 2.00, so you will have to come tomorrow at 2.15 p.m. and
5 you are kindly requested not to have any contact with the Prosecution
6 until then. I would like to ask Mr. Usher to accompany you to the door.
7 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
9 Before I give the floor to Mr. Karnavas there for a few seconds, I
10 would like to read out two oral decisions which are urgent and which need
11 to be handed down. One of them will be read out in open session and the
12 other one in private session.
13 [The witness stands down]
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The oral decision to be read out
15 in open session relating to the 98 bis procedure. The hearing of the 10th
16 of January, 2008, the Prosecution asked the Chamber to ask the Defence to
17 file a skeleton of its arguments that it will present orally pursuant to
18 Rule 98 bis of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence. The Defence teams
19 objected to this. The Trial Chamber recalls that Rule 98 bis of the Rules
20 was amended to shorten the procedure. Thus, the arguments of both parties
21 and the decision of the Chamber are from now onwards handed down orally.
22 As far as these three decisions pertaining to the Scheduling Order is
23 concerned, the Trial Chamber has clearly reminded the parties that the
24 arguments presented pursuant to Rule 98 bis can only be presented orally,
25 and the Trial Chamber will not allow any written submissions to be made on
1 that count.
2 The Prosecution has submitted no arguments that would justify this
3 decision to be re-examined. Therefore, the Trial Chamber dismisses the
4 motion filed by the Prosecution.
5 I would like now to move into private session so I can read out
6 the second decision.
7 [Private session]
11 Page 26227 redacted. Private session
12 [Open session]
13 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Karnavas.
15 MR. KARNAVAS: Thank you, Mr. President. I just wanted to end the
16 day by making sure that no one left here with any misunderstandings. It
17 is with great humility that I accept the Trial Chamber's decision
18 concerning Rule 46(A)(i), that's number one. Number two, I will endeavour
19 in the future to rectify any shortcomings, and I do take on board the
20 Trial Chamber's observations. It was never my intention to offend anyone.
21 In fact, I should say not in my defence but just by way of an
22 explanation at the end of the cross, I did exchange pleasantries with the
23 witness, but I do fully understand the Trial Chamber's concerns and it
24 certainly was not my intention at any point in time to offend Judge
25 Trechsel, nor do I wish to leave the impression that either I or Dr. Prlic
1 in any way are concerned that at the end of the day we will -- any member
2 of the Bench will do anything less than their level best to ensure that
3 everybody receives a fair trial, that's not just the accused but also the
5 And again my deepest apologies to Judge Trechsel if, indeed, I
6 have offended you, that was not my intention. And again, I will endeavour
7 in the future to work on my shortcomings, and thank you for being gracious
8 enough to point them out to me. Thank you very much.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Thank you,
10 Mr. Karnavas for your kind words.
11 As far as I'm concerned, what I would like in 2008 is for the
12 hearings to unfold in the best atmosphere possible. The purpose of the
13 Bench is to try to understand what has happened during these years, 1992,
14 1993, based on evidence which both parties develop, the Prosecution and
15 the Defence. The Trial Chamber have to see through what is being
16 presented without there being any drama, any unrest. What we are only
17 interested in is seeking the truth, whatever the truth may be. So I'm
18 fully aware of the fact that everybody will do their best to make sure
19 that we have a pleasant atmosphere in the courtroom and that each and
20 everyone, if we are as we are in an adversarial system, that each and
21 everyone can answer the question, put the question, cross-examine, and
22 raise any uncertainties or doubts that he or she may have. And it is with
23 that in mind that I am fully convinced that everybody will tow the line
24 this year and I think -- I am sure that this trial will unfold in the best
25 conditions possible.
1 The trial has been ongoing for two years now already, and we might
2 still be together for the next two years because if the Defence has the
3 same time as the Prosecution this is what will happen. So let's all try
4 to make sure that all of this unfolds in the best possible atmosphere.
5 I wish you a nice evening, for, as you know, we shall resume
6 tomorrow at a quarter past 2.00.
7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 5.43 p.m.,
8 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 15th day of
9 January, 2008, at 2.15 p.m.