Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 47486

 1                           Tuesday, 1 December 2009

 2                           [Open session]

 3                           [The accused entered court]

 4                           [The witness takes the stand]

 5                           --- Upon commencing at 2.20 p.m.

 6             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, could you please

 7     call the case.

 8             THE REGISTRAR:  Good afternoon, Your Honours.  Good afternoon,

 9     everyone in and around the courtroom.

10             This is case number IT-04-74-T, the Prosecutor versus Prlic et

11     al.  Thank you, Your Honours.

12             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.

13             This is Tuesday, December 1st, 2009, and I greet our witness, I

14     greet the accused, the Defence counsel.  I also greet Mr. Scott and his

15     case manager, as well as everyone helping him.  And I also greet everyone

16     helping us around the courtroom.

17             Mr. Registrar, you have some IC numbers for us.

18             THE REGISTRAR:  Thank you, Your Honour.

19             4D and 2D have submitted their objections to the Prosecution's

20     list of documents tendered via Witness 4D-AB.  This list shall be given

21     Exhibit IC01134 and 01135 respectively.  The Prosecution has also

22     submitted their objections to 2D and 3D lists of documents tendered via

23     Witness 4D-AB.  This list shall be given Exhibit IC01136.  Thank you,

24     Your Honour.

25             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.

Page 47487

 1                           WITNESS:  Filip Filipovic [Resumed]

 2                           [The witness answered through interpreter]

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, before I give the

 4     floor to Ms. Alaburic, I have a small question for you.  I would like

 5     some additional information.

 6             When you took office, so far as you remember, could you tell us

 7     who was the head of the Main Staff at the time?

 8             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When I took office, which post do

 9     you mean, at the beginning of the war or maybe later?

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, at the beginning of the

11     war, when you left the JNA, in 1992.  I looked at you here in the Kordic

12     case, and I saw "Mr. Petkovic."  Very well, it was Mr. Petkovic.  And

13     what month was it when you took office?

14             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not sure.  I first met him in

15     May.  Whether he was chief of the Main Staff, I don't know, but he was

16     the person I communicated with.  These were just the beginnings, and he

17     was one of the persons I communicated with, and I realised that he was a

18     person I could communicate with.

19             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  It was in May, as

20     far as you remember.

21             In the indictment, Mr. Petkovic is chief of the Main Staff as of

22     April 1992, so what you said seems to corroborate, that he was chief of

23     the Main Staff at the time.  Thank you.

24             Ms. Alaburic.

25             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.

Page 47488

 1             I'd like to greet everybody in the courtroom, and particularly

 2     you, General.

 3                           Examination by Ms. Alaburic:  [Continued]

 4        Q.   [Interpretation] By questioning Mr. Petkovic, we are going to

 5     deal with the moment when he took office of chief of the Main Staff, so

 6     I'm not going to inquire about that with you.  Let's resume where we

 7     stopped yesterday, the issue of Busovaca.

 8             We promised to produce some maps.  I hope that Their Honours

 9     received those maps.  I propose that we give the witness both maps so

10     that we can save some time.  We are going to show the map in connection

11     with the document 4D392.  This is dated 18th of January, 1993, the

12     Security Administration of the Staff of the Supreme Command.  The last

13     paragraph, which may I remind everybody here, read:

14             "Army of the BiH, in the area of responsibility of the 3rd Corps

15     or Central Bosnia, can fight the HVO under the condition that they cut

16     off road communications: first of all, Busovaca-Kiseljak-Fojnica at

17     Lugovi and Kacuni; and secondly, the road communication Busovaca-Vitez --

18     secondly, the road communication Busovaca-Vitez; and, thirdly, the road

19     communication Vitez-Travnik at Mecave."

20             General, you see on the ELMO this document.  I can't see what's

21     showing there.

22        A.   [Indicates]

23        Q.   General, the other map, the other map, please.

24             General, to save time I marked what you did during the proofing

25     for your examination, so let's just see where would be the cutoff point

Page 47489

 1     of the first road communication, Busovaca-Kiseljak-Fojnica at Lugovi and

 2     Kacuni.

 3             MR. SCOTT:  Excuse me, Mr. President, Your Honours.  Good

 4     afternoon.

 5             We're not getting -- I don't know about the Judges, but we're not

 6     getting any broadcast of what's on the ELMO.  We can't follow the

 7     testimony or the markings that are being made, so it's a bit difficult

 8     for us to -- now we have it.  It's not on -- it's not on ours, anyway.

 9             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Now I no longer have the image,

10     now the Defence teams do not have the image.

11             Let's not waste time.  Let's skip working on the map, since we do

12     not have the technical possibility for that, or maybe we can put it off

13     for a bit.  We are going to skip the documents relating to the maps.  If

14     things are mended in the meantime, we can revisit the maps.

15        Q.   Let's now continue with the issue of Busovaca.  Let's take a look

16     at 4 -- 2D1206 [as interpreted].

17             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, unfortunately we

18     couldn't see the map.  Maybe we will have an opportunity to see it later,

19     when the system is up again.

20             There is a question that crops up every week from the Prosecution

21     as well as from the Defence.  It's the question of the lines of

22     communications, of the ways of communication, and we're told that there

23     were these corridors, and if the corridor is cut off, then there are

24     consequences.  At least that's what we are told, as Judges.  And the

25     Prosecution and the Defence is always talking about these consequences.

Page 47490

 1     And as we just saw, if the road is cut off, it's impossible to move

 2     forward anymore.  Now, I'm talking to the servicemen.  When you are in a

 3     situation when the road is cut off, can't you just bypass it, going

 4     through the woods, maybe, or through the mountains, maybe transporting

 5     weapons on your back, you know, like the Vietnamese did in the Ho Chi

 6     Minh Trail or on bicycles, because, you know, they had bicycles and they

 7     were able to carry artillery pieces that way?  So in Bosnia-Herzegovina,

 8     when roads were cut off, did this really prevent any army, whether it be

 9     the HVO or the BH Army, to act?  Did it really immobilise these armies?

10             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There were many cut-off points, but

11     there were alternative routes for vehicles, and of course say nothing

12     about pedestrians.  But those three or four points where communication

13     would be cut off would mean that the person or the side cutting off

14     communication would prevent the other side from gaining access to

15     alternative routes.  There were no functional alternatives to those

16     communications.

17             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  You say that there

18     was no alternative route.  Fine, I agree with you.  But even so, if you

19     go through the mountains or through the woods, can't you just bypass the

20     blockade that way?

21             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, provided it is not manned.

22     But, first of all, those check-points, those cut-off points, were

23     introduced by allies.  These were a psychological blow.  Then you start

24     to wonder whether we are allies or not.  People cannot travel, they

25     cannot see their physician, go to a hospital.  So this cutting off of

Page 47491

 1     communication was not just a military ploy.  It will add ramifications on

 2     the civilian life.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are adding an additional

 4     element which may be important.  You're saying that the fact that allies

 5     are cutting off the road has psychological consequences, important

 6     psychological consequences, but militarily you could bypass that

 7     roadblock as long as the woods or the mountains are not occupied by the

 8     enemy.  But for you, the most important thing is that it's a

 9     psychological blow?

10             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Both a psychological blow and a

11     military blow.  If I'm taking a transport from Kiseljak to Jajce and it

12     encounters check-points very frequently, then communication grinds down

13     to a halt.  So one of the main problems were those check-points on roads.

14     These were not just a handful, it was a host of check-points, and we were

15     fighting all along to remove those check-points.  First of all, there was

16     a war of plunder, and later on it was ethnical, political, and military.

17     Check-points served the purpose of looting, of taking property away, and

18     very few check-points were set up by the military.  They were just set up

19     by officers in the rear along the roads.

20             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  I'm sure we will

21     revisit this issue later on.

22             Ms. Alaburic.

23             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I've been told that

24     the ELMO is now working.

25        Q.   So, General, please, take a look at the map, first the map

Page 47492

 1     concerning the document 4D392.  This is the map.

 2             So, General, please tell us, in this document by the Army of BiH,

 3     it is stated that the road communication Busovaca-Kiseljak-Fojnica should

 4     be cut off at Lugovi and Kacuni, as first.  Please put "1" by the

 5     location Lugovi and number 2 by the location Kacuni.

 6        A.   [Marks]

 7        Q.   Please tell us, General, under "1" on the map, it doesn't state

 8     "Lugovi," it says "Bilalovac."  Could you please explain where Lugovi is

 9     located?

10        A.   Well, Lugovi is a settlement close by.  It doesn't show because

11     of the fact that the map is not that detailed.

12        Q.   Fine.  It says "Vitez-Travnik" in the document.  It should be cut

13     off at the place Mecave.  Please put number 3 by that place.

14        A.   [Marks]

15        Q.   And then it is stated -- for the Busovaca-Vitez road, it doesn't

16     state where it should be cut off.  We've placed this dotted line here.

17     Please, General, explain why was it put here?

18        A.   This is the place Santici or Ahmici [indicates], and this is the

19     best place to cut off this road.  At other places, it's much more

20     difficult.

21        Q.   Place "4," please, by that place, and now date the map and sign

22     it.

23        A.   [Marks]

24             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] And I would like to get an IC

25     number for this map, Your Honours.

Page 47493

 1             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar.

 2             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honour, the marked map shall be given

 3     Exhibit IC01137.  Thank you, Your Honours.

 4             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

 5        Q.   Let's take a look at the next map.  It's connected with 4D1208.

 6     In the last paragraph of that document, it is stated that:

 7             "PAT is relocated from Gornja Visnjica village to the village of

 8     Dusina to secure the road between Dusina and Sudine."

 9             Please place "1" next to the village of Visnjica, number 2 by the

10     village of Dusina, and number 3 next to the village of Sudine.

11        A.   [Marks]

12        Q.   Please tell us, General -- indicate the direction of this PAT.

13        A.   It is transferred from the Bosna River Valley to this place to

14     control the area towards Kacuni or the Busovaca-Vitez communication.

15        Q.   Thank you.  Please place "4" by Kacuni, and date and sign the

16     map, please.

17        A.   [Marks]

18             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] And I would like to get an IC

19     number for this map.

20             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, could we have a

21     number.

22             THE REGISTRAR:  Yes, Your Honour.  The second marked map shall be

23     given Exhibit IC01138.  Thank you, Your Honours.

24             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

25        Q.   General, let's go back to the document which we started our

Page 47494

 1     conversation with, 4D1206.  It is a report by the commander

 2     Dzemal Merdan.  In the paragraph entitled "Zenica," in the second

 3     sentence it states --

 4        A.   I do not have the document.

 5             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Can we please give the witness the

 6     binder containing the documents of the General Petkovic Defence.

 7             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I do have it now, but in

 8     English.

 9             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

10        Q.   Now you have it in the B/C/S as well.  In the second sentence,

11     General, it is stated:

12             "With the aim of closing down the Dusina-Lasva-Sudine road from

13     elevation 852 to Dusina, we engaged 25 newly-mobilised men, 70 men from

14     the 7th Muslim Brigade, and 20 soldiers of the Anti-Sabotage Detachment."

15             Please specify the place those forces of the Army of BiH are

16     heading towards.

17        A.   Those places are along the left bank of the Lasva, that is to

18     say, opposite Dusina.

19        Q.   Is it in the direction of Kacuni?

20        A.   No.  Just a moment.  Let me take a look.  Yes,

21     Dusina-Lasva-Sudine.  It's the same direction and access that we marked

22     on the map.

23             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] May the witness be provided with a

24     binder containing the documents.

25             So until we're waiting for that, we're going to skip over a few

Page 47495

 1     documents, Your Honours, and take a look at map 4D560, 4D560, which is a

 2     schematic, and you'll see it on the monitor, General, of the area of

 3     Central Bosnia as of January 1993.

 4        Q.   Take a look at this map, please, General.  One of the axes of

 5     action by the BH Army, we have listed here the area around Busovaca.  Can

 6     you tell us whether Kacuni is within that general area covered by the

 7     arrow?

 8        A.   Yes, correct, Kacuni.  But I can see that the direction towards

 9     Bugojno was cut off, but that was in October.  Anyway, the arrow does

10     show the place where Kacuni is located.

11        Q.   Now, General, as Judge Antonetti asked you about alternative

12     directions and axes, tell us what the width of this blue area is

13     controlled by the Croats at Vitez, for example.  How broad is that?

14        A.   It's 800 to 900 metres at Vitez.

15        Q.   And in the Vitez area, moving towards Busovaca, what is the

16     largest width of territory under Croatian control?

17        A.   The largest width is about two and a half to three kilometres.

18             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, regarding Dusina at

19     elevation 852, I know this village because I've been there.  There was a

20     massacre in this village.  Everyone knows about it.  Now, whenever an

21     army captures a village, whatever the army, and perpetrates crimes, the

22     army doesn't stay in that area, it moves on.  Now, according to you, is

23     it controlling the territory or is it a strategic capture?  If it's a

24     strategic capture, you're supposed to stay and hold the territory.  But

25     if you just move about after that, what does it mean?

Page 47496

 1             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When the army takes control of a

 2     locality, in principle, there should be no forces coming after it to

 3     commit crimes.  But in this war of ours, taking control of a place means

 4     having control of it, which means that the opposite side, the enemy side,

 5     no longer has control or does not have control, but the population stays

 6     there with all their frustrations and God knows what from before.  And

 7     then, in continuation, crimes or the various things that they should not

 8     do are done.  For example, in 1993 we took Grbavica, and then we saw

 9     other people taking away property the next day; civilians, that is.

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  You have answered

11     my question, in part.  You're saying when a place is taken over, it's to

12     control it, but does this mean that controlling it does not necessarily

13     involve constant presence of the army?  You can take over the place and

14     then move on; is that it?

15             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

17             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

18        Q.   Now, General, let's look at another map, which is 4D561.  It's

19     the same territory, but now with the situation as of March and April

20     1993.  Here we have it.

21             Now, General, this Croatian territory has cut between Busovaca

22     and Kiseljak.  Tell us, please, until the end of the war did the Croatian

23     forces manage to establish communication between Kiseljak and Busovaca?

24        A.   No.  It was a depth of 12 kilometres, and the area remained cut

25     off between Busovaca and Kiseljak.

Page 47497

 1        Q.   On this map, General, we see the attack by the BH Army launched

 2     in the vicinity of Vitez from the Zenica direction.  Now, within that

 3     area, is that where the village of Ahmici is located?

 4        A.   Yes.

 5        Q.   Very well, General.  We are finished with the topic of Busovaca

 6     now, and cutting off the corridor, and realising the plan to form

 7     Croatian enclaves.

 8             I'd like to inform the Trial Chamber now that because I spent

 9     rather a lot of time yesterday, I have reorganised my

10     examination-in-chief so that now I'm going to deal with Sovici and

11     Doljani, and these are documents to be found in the second binder.  And

12     if there's any time left over after we finish discussing that topic, I'll

13     revert back to other areas and topics.

14             Your Honours, we're first of all going to show you a film, or

15     half an hour of it, the beginning of a film, a film by Television Konjic.

16     It is P2187, and it is about a meeting between the representatives of the

17     HVO and BH Army held on the 4th of May, 1993, in Jablanica.  You have the

18     transcript.  We're showing you this film because we want to paint a

19     portrait of General Milivoj Petkovic, and we consider that it would be

20     very useful if you could hear the speakers speaking in their own tongues,

21     Bosnian, Serbo-Croatian, B/C/S, just so that you can see the tones used

22     by Sefer Halilovic and Arif Pasalic, on the one hand, and

23     General Petkovic, on the other.  That's the purpose of us showing you

24     this film.  Thank you.

25             So let's look at that now, let's watch it.

Page 47498

 1                           [Video-clip played]

 2             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

 3        Q.   Tell us, please, General, were you at that meeting?

 4        A.   I'm the main person there sitting to the left of Petkovic.  I was

 5     there as one of the main people in the Joint Command.  Delic is sitting

 6     here, Sefer and others.  Perhaps you didn't notice them, but I did.

 7     They're there.  And in Zenica, I was shown the command that would be a

 8     joint command, and then with Delic and Sefer and the others, and with

 9     UNPROFOR, we moved to the Konjic area.  I spent the night there with

10     them, or, rather, two nights in Konjic, in those caves there, and then

11     came to this meeting.  And I was absolutely astounded to see the

12     atmosphere prevailing at the meeting, because I was in all that

13     commotion -- all those commotions and so on.  This was a continuation of

14     the previous relationships, allowing the people behind there to shout and

15     behave in that general way.

16        Q.   Now, since you're describing the atmosphere in that way, are you

17     describing the conduct of the president of the HVO or the BH Army?

18        A.   This is how the BH Army behaved, or the Muslims ultimately,

19     because we were in Jablanica, they controlled Jablanica.  There were no

20     Croats there.  Well, there were 150 metres away.  In a museum or

21     somewhere, there were over 100 persons incarcerated down there.

22        Q.   Now, did General Petkovic demonstrate readiness for co-operation?

23     What was your impression about his real intentions and wishes?

24        A.   Our side, on the whole, as a whole, wanted, wished, and

25     endeavoured to do that.  Well, if it was Bosnia-Herzegovina, you couldn't

Page 47499

 1     have somebody else try to appropriate Bosnia-Herzegovina and exclude me,

 2     for example, when you have statehood.  But in this particular case, and

 3     this has jogged my memory, it was absolutely a flagrant example.  A state

 4     was being destroyed, they're slaughtering us, slitting our throats, but

 5     it's all a pose.  First of all, there were organised meetings by the

 6     international community, UNPROFOR in actual fact, so the UNPROFOR

 7     commanders were there, but -- well, the European Monitors, too,

 8     observers.

 9             So this was just play-acting for representatives of the

10     international community.  They repeated "the republic," "we," "we are the

11     legal ones, we're the real ones, and you are," everything else, all the

12     rest of it, which according to the Goebbels model, when he said that a

13     lie repeated 100 times becomes the truth.  So in international relations

14     and overall relations in Bosnia-Herzegovina, for instance, it became

15     evident that the green flag was the main flag, the official flag.  That

16     was what was being portrayed, and that my tricolour was of no value at

17     all, that I wasn't in Bosnia at all.  So this meeting showed the

18     culmination point of relations of this kind.

19             Now, the question was:  What was Petkovic like?  Well, in my

20     opinion, he was too calm, faced with the events that were discussed at

21     that meeting.  I suppose that he was able to restrain himself, and you

22     could see that demonstrated at this meeting.  So he was calm and he

23     believed that he should work consistently to achieve his aim; first of

24     all, to avoid a conflict and to have conflicts resolved, and to start

25     setting up a Bosnia-Herzegovina in the best way possible for the people

Page 47500

 1     of Bosnia-Herzegovina, not only for one nation, for one ethnicity there.

 2        Q.   We heard at this meeting, General, that Mr. Petkovic said,

 3     discussing Mostar, Let's make Mostar an open city, and Mostar will be the

 4     way that Mostar people want it to be.  According to your knowledge at the

 5     time, would you tell us whether this was the frank and earnest attitude

 6     of the Croats of the time and as expressed at this meeting?

 7        A.   I left an area where I'd been for a year in very shaky

 8     circumstances to go and resolve problems.  I was not familiar in detail

 9     with this situation in Mostar, or in Jablanica, or in Konjic.  I was just

10     getting to know the facts.  And in my example and in Petkovic's example,

11     you had to attend hundreds of meetings to make some progress, and risk

12     your life in the process, and the overall attitude of the Croatian side,

13     and Petkovic as being at the head of the armed forces, was we were pro

14     co-operation.  We wanted to resolve problems and allow everybody to live.

15        Q.   Let's take a look at some details concerning Sovici and Doljani.

16     You have the documents, and I would like to ask Madam Usher to help the

17     witness find the document.

18             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, before we move on to

19     Sovici, I, like all the other Judges, have watched this video very

20     carefully, and in this footage we saw Mr. Halilovic, Mr. Petkovic.  You,

21     yourself, were there, so was Pasalic, and then there's the Spaniard

22     presiding over the meeting.  And watching and listening to the footage, I

23     was very impressed by the tone of all those who took part.  Mr. Halilovic

24     was very firm in the way he spoke, and Mr. Petkovic really is very

25     moderate and he tries to open the way for movement on the ground.  He

Page 47501

 1     offers to Mr. Halilovic to go straight to Doljani, to go with him to

 2     Mostar, and each side blames the other for responsibility to some degree.

 3     And the background to all this has been set by Halilovic, when he asked

 4     General Petkovic whether he was a friend or a foe.  And depending on the

 5     answers, he will adjust his position, together with a threat of an

 6     all-out conflict.  So any Judge watching this video footage is rather

 7     impressed by the will of each side that addresses obvious facts; arrest,

 8     people being driven out, and all that.

 9             And I'm also surprised by the fact that on several occasions,

10     General Petkovic told General Halilovic that he should give him lists for

11     checks, and for people to be released immediately, or for them to be able

12     to go back home straight away.  So there seems to be goodwill on both

13     sides.

14             But if you watch this footage, you think, well, what is the

15     Spaniard doing?  He could have taken hold of the dialogue, controlled it,

16     but he didn't say a thing.  How do you account for that?  Is it because

17     he had to remain neutral whilst he's in front of two individuals who are

18     willing to enter into a dialogue?  So it seemed as though it was possible

19     to find a solution easily, but in this footage the Spaniard does not say

20     a single word.  How do you account for this?

21             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] First of all, Sefer Halilovic and

22     others, and the audience sitting at the back, attacked us so much that I

23     personally felt threatened, and I accepted to be shot at any moment.

24     This was the general climate.  But it wasn't for the first time, so in a

25     way we had gotten used to that.

Page 47502

 1             Throughout that meeting, there were attacks against the HVO.  We

 2     were blamed for everything.  We were blamed for being alive.  That was

 3     the general atmosphere.

 4             If you ask me about the Spanish Battalion, the person chaired the

 5     meeting as long as he could, and you could see that in the first half of

 6     the movie.  Later on, he could not chair the meeting, and Sefer Halilovic

 7     could not control his brigade's commander to keep his attitude in check

 8     during such a meeting.

 9             Generally, at such meetings, for instance, at one meeting in

10     Konjic some two or three days later, there was this local commander,

11     Zuka, who burst into the meeting and hugs Cibo on the other side, and he

12     said, We've resolved the issue of Vrce.  For me, it was an international

13     meeting at the top level, and you have some local commander bursting in

14     and kissing one attendee and saying that he'd resolved the Vrce issue.

15     What had they done?  They'd liquidated the HVO in the Vrce village, and

16     that was three days after the meeting with Sefer Halilovic that we saw on

17     the film, maybe four days later.

18             So in terms of frankness, the possibility of resolving problems

19     and issues, on the Croatian side, on the part of the HVO, realising that

20     we had to fight for our positions in different ways, both through

21     negotiations, which we did all along, but we continuously were battered.

22     In terms that the international community could not help us, well, they

23     could not help the other sides either.  They could only be mediators.

24             The Spaniards were in the same position as other units of

25     UNPROFOR, as far as I could tell where I attended meetings.

Page 47503

 1             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, at the very beginning

 2     of the meeting, the Spaniard said, in his language, We're going to work

 3     for peace, "Vamos a trabajar por la paz para."  Very good, but apparently

 4     General Petkovic and General Halilovic are along that line.  But if

 5     they're all working towards peace, what does SpaBat do?  Is it totally

 6     neutral?  That's what I wanted to know from you.  Why did SpaBat not take

 7     over the situation and try to control it, because technically it seemed a

 8     rather easy thing to do, given the commitment displayed by all sides.  So

 9     how do you explain this?

10             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you are forcing me into an

11     awkward situation.

12             In terms of the quality of the armies that I had contact with,

13     the British, the French, the Nordic people, and the Dutch people, you

14     could rely on them; the Dutch to a lesser extent.  As far as the other

15     forces were concerned, you could hardly rely on whether to attend those

16     meetings or not, because they were not ready and equipped and trained for

17     critical situations, in my opinion, and critical situations are

18     foreseeable and possible.

19             In this concrete example, the Spanish Battalion was far from --

20     particularly when new units would come in - they had a tour of duty of

21     six months - they could not find their bearings.  But at that meeting, I

22     was taken aback by the atmosphere and the mode of work.  And, after all,

23     the Spanish Battalion were also threatened, they were also in jeopardy.

24             Let's not be fooled to think that UNPROFOR and European Monitors

25     did not risk their lives.  They were threatened as well.  They were

Page 47504

 1     sitting ducks at times between two sides in the conflict.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.  But that may be one

 3     more reason to get more involved, because if you go by this footage, this

 4     can be sort of a very animated discussion, but we've all been part of

 5     much harder meetings, and it did not seem impossible to find common

 6     ground between all sides.  That's the impression I gathered from this

 7     footage, and I was seeking your impression.  And in answering my

 8     question, you said that SpaBat did not really seem to be up to the task,

 9     which may be true.

10             But, sir, following this meeting, did General Halilovic and

11     General Petkovic go together on the ground?

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, they did go in SpaBat APCs to

13     the area of Sovici and Doljani.  I, with another group, were supposed to

14     go to Konjic, and a third group was supposed to go to Kostajnica.

15     However, the other two groups could not go through -- at least my group

16     could not on that day, allegedly because of a check-point.  And, you see,

17     when you're sitting in an APC, you may be sitting for hours, not knowing

18     what's going on.  But I do know that that group visited Sovici and

19     Doljani.  Well, for me, toponyms and the people in that area were unknown

20     to me.  There were hundreds of people, hundreds of toponyms.  I tried to

21     get to know brigade commanders, battalion commanders, the names of

22     places, as far as I could, so that in my capacity as a member of the

23     Joint Command, to function and to perform my duties.

24             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.

25             Since we were speaking about Doljani and Sovici, Ms. Alaburic

Page 47505

 1     wanted to address these issues.

 2             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

 3        Q.   General, please tell us, when you visited the ground on the 4th

 4     of May in those different groups, where did you spend the night?

 5        A.   I said that the preceding two nights I spent in Konjic, which was

 6     completely under the control of the ABiH, and I think that that night I

 7     slept in Capljina with family that I saw for the first time after several

 8     months.  I think it was either that or the next day, the 5th of May,

 9     because there was another meeting later on.  At Capljina, it was.

10        Q.   And I'm interested in the 5th of May meeting.

11             Please, Your Honours, in the other binder, and for the witness in

12     the penultimate set of documents, there must be a book-mark.  There is a

13     document P2200.

14             General, it's a very brief document.  You may rely on e-court to

15     peruse it.  The document is P2200, in the penultimate set of documents.

16             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I may be of assistance, I had to

17     reshuffle the sequence of documents.

18             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Madam Usher, if you could bring

19     the binder to me, I will find the document for her [as interpreted].

20        Q.   General, please tell us, have you ever seen this brief memo

21     before?

22        A.   I saw it during the proofing meeting in the past two or three

23     days while being primed for this examination.

24        Q.   Who is the author of this memo?

25        A.   It is a query addressed to a unit concerning Sovici and Doljani,

Page 47506

 1     but it, in effect, is a fruit of my intervention.  In other words,

 2     Petkovic and Halilovic spoke, and Petkovic asked me to inquire about the

 3     buses for Doljani and Sovici, and I did not know anything about Doljani

 4     and Sovici, or any other buses.  But to cut a long story short, I

 5     established contact with the Main Staff, and they tell me -- or, rather,

 6     the duty officer -- well, I had to explain that there was an agreement

 7     that we would provide the buses to transport the greens.  So who, what?

 8     And then I said, Well, to transport the greens.  I was, in essence, the

 9     author of this inquiry.

10        Q.   Tell us, General, when you said "the greens," who did you mean?

11        A.   I meant the Muslim side, because otherwise -- in our

12     communications and in my way of thinking, villages with green flags,

13     denoted in the green colour, that was the Muslim side.

14        Q.   Now, with this word "green" or "greens," did you wish to

15     under-rate the Muslim population in any way by using that word?

16        A.   You can't under -rate something that is there, that I grew up

17     with, and that was the majority.

18        Q.   Well, was it your intention, tell us, to belittle them?  Was it

19     supposed to be a sort of insult, insulting word for the Muslims?

20        A.   No.  In the area that I came from, for the Serbs and Muslims and

21     Croats, there are derogatory terms, and in this case that would be

22     "balija," but that was not it.  It was just a way of denoting who it

23     might concern.  And in wartime, in general, I try not to insult anyone.

24     It was the duty officer down there, in talking to me - it couldn't have

25     been otherwise than that - he included the word, but it wasn't

Page 47507

 1     derogatory.  They were under a green flag.  So I don't see where the

 2     problem is there.

 3        Q.   Tell us, General, did you receive a response?  Had the buses been

 4     dispatched or not?

 5        A.   We received oral information that the buses had been sent.  Well,

 6     this is the gist of it, that the buses were from Arif Pasalic.

 7             THE INTERPRETER:  "That there were buses, I know that from

 8     Arif Pasalic," interpreter's correction.

 9             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

10        Q.   Now look at the next document, 4D477.

11             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, regarding this

12     question of the greens, according to the Prosecution this means that you

13     looked at the Muslims as people who might be potential victims.

14     Ms. Alaburic is asking you to give more details about who those greens

15     are.  Now, I would like to know the following:  On your military maps,

16     when you were meeting together with your officers, did the Muslims use

17     green markers?

18             THE INTERPRETER:  Interpreter's correction.

19             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Did you use green markers and

20     green flags to symbolise the Muslims?  Did the greens represent the

21     enemy, the Muslims?  Without any derogatory meaning behind this, as you

22     would say, the reds, the blacks, the whites, did you use those just to

23     say who they were, militarily-wise?

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the JNA, you had the red was JNA

25     and the enemy was the blue.  Now, as far as I was concerned, I had a bit

Page 47508

 1     of a problem because we used red to denote the Serbs, the colour blue for

 2     the HVO, and the green was for the Muslim forces, not in attack and

 3     defence; but deployment and so on, their positions and so on.

 4             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I understood that.

 5             Now, in your document, because you told us that you wrote this

 6     document, you are asking a question about the population.  You seem to be

 7     surprised about the fact that they were in Sovici and Doljani, and you

 8     were wondering where they came from.  According to you, there weren't

 9     supposed to be any civilians present there, and you were told that they

10     had to be evacuated and you were very surprised?  Is that why you put

11     this question in your text about these people?

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Let me repeat.

13             At meetings, and you just saw an excerpt from one such meeting,

14     the footage we were shown, there's the official part and then there are

15     talks and meetings, waiting for APCs or whatever, this interim period.

16     And at one of these sort of interim periods, Petkovic was talking to

17     Sefer, or Sefer talking to Petkovic, and then Petkovic came up to me and

18     said, Have this checked out, check and see if the buses have been sent to

19     Sovici and Doljani.  And then he left.

20             Now, had he asked me that in Bosnia, that's where I was fighting

21     and that would have been easy, but all these toponyms, Sovici, Doljani,

22     these names, these villages, I didn't know anything about them, I didn't

23     know who the inhabitants were.  And in talking to the duty operative down

24     there, I asked him about the buses, considering that he knew something

25     about these buses, that he knew everything about the buses.  He says,

Page 47509

 1     Who, what, where, when, how?  And then I said, Well, they're supposed to

 2     drive somebody from Sovici and Doljani.  Who those people are, probably

 3     the greens, because I knew that Sovici were an exit to --

 4             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, this document you

 5     wrote could be incriminatory:

 6             "Have five buses come to Sovici or Doljani to evacuate the

 7     population," in brackets "green," "towards Jablanica.  If they have,

 8     where did they come from."

 9             This is what you wrote.  And when reading it, it seems that you

10     sending five buses to evacuate the civilians, which is fine, but you seem

11     to wonder what on earth these people are doing there.  If they are there,

12     where are they coming from?  So one could think that according to you,

13     there were no longer any civilians there, and then Halilovic is suddenly

14     telling you, But there are Muslims in Sovici and Doljani, and you seem

15     surprised.  And so you're asking the question, Well, if they're there,

16     where did they come from?

17             What do you have to say on this?

18             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's wrong.  From the film --

19     well, the previous day it was said that there were a thousand dead over

20     there, or incarcerated, or -- well, Arif Pasalic said, Doljani, Sovici,

21     the day before, and now this name is a name I hear for the first time,

22     this place name.  I didn't go to Sovici and Doljani, so I don't know what

23     they were dealing with there, Sefer and Petkovic.  What I do know is they

24     said, Check and see whether the buses have arrived in Doljani.  And so I

25     didn't find my way very well there, and then I talked to the duty officer

Page 47510

 1     in the military district and --

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let me finish my question.

 3             This is my interpretation of this document, and you can agree

 4     with it or not.  I might be wrong, of course.  A military action is

 5     underway in Sovici and Doljani.  Whether either by the HVO or the

 6     BH Army, I'm not going into details to know exactly who did what, but

 7     there are combats.  Fighting is going on between soldiers.  It seems that

 8     whenever there is fighting, the civilian population might be there, but

 9     sometimes is no longer there.  At the HVO level, you know that there is

10     fighting, and you believe that the civilians are all gone.  But then

11     suddenly Halilovic is telling Petkovic, during this meeting, that there

12     are civilians in the area.  Now, of course, you do not know in neither

13     Sovici nor Doljani, and you do what is needed to send the buses, which is

14     a humanitarian gesture that no one could blame you for.  But at the same

15     time, you seem to be very surprised to suddenly find out that there are

16     civilians, and in this question [as interpreted] you actually put the

17     question about the civilians.

18             That's what I'm trying to understand, so please answer honestly.

19     There's no need to beat around the bush.

20             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand that in Sovici and

21     Doljani, what I understood was that there was a population there, and

22     later on, with the actors of the conflict, I gain a picture of what was

23     happening over there.  And when I was asked whether the buses had left, I

24     didn't know.  I talked to Piske, Cibo, Polo, Zuka, Nihad, Cibo, so that I

25     could gain an impression about Sovici and Doljani to know what was going

Page 47511

 1     on.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, it's noted.

 3             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour --

 4             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Excuse me.  I'm trying to make myself

 5     understood.

 6             The President has put it to you that this was a fine humanitarian

 7     gesture.  That is quite possible.  I think it is a one-sided view.  Maybe

 8     it's right.  But one could also say that this is a piece of ethnic

 9     cleansing, because you only take away the greens.  You know nothing about

10     the places, you say.  How do you know that there's only greens there and

11     that there are no Croats that need protection?  This is what I find a bit

12     strange.  I wonder whether you have an explanation for this.

13             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't know.  I'm surprised

14     that various insinuations are now being made about all this.  The whole

15     problem of Doljani and Sovici I see as --

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, please don't say that

17     you're surprised.  Judges have to check all the different assumptions,

18     those who are in favour of a case and those who go against a case also.

19     That's the role they're supposed to play.  A Judge is not supposed to

20     take the written word at face value.  It tries to understand and to check

21     the different assumptions.  And my colleague, my fellow Judge, is trying

22     to check a hypothesis.  It's not an insinuation.  He's trying to verify a

23     situation, nothing more.

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said yesterday I transferred

25     Muslim refugees from Vasic when the Serbs had expelled them, and then I

Page 47512

 1     said, Send ambulances.  Who's being driven?  The greens are.  So this is

 2     certainly the Muslim population, and it's certain that there were Muslim

 3     inhabitants there.  Now, why they needed the buses, they need it for

 4     Jablanica.  If they were going to Jablanica, then it was quite certain

 5     that they were greens.  So I asked whether the buses had been sent and

 6     had arrived to transport the greens to Jablanica.  There were no blues

 7     going to Jablanica, no way.  So it was quite clear to me that it was the

 8     greens that were going.

 9             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Thank you.

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I believe it's time for the

11     break, so we shall break for 20 minutes.

12                           --- Recess taken at 3.54 p.m.

13                           --- On resuming at 4.20 p.m.

14             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic.

15             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, before I continue,

16     I'd like to make a request, if I may.

17             We're dealing with Sovici and Doljani, and on the first document

18     that I showed, with respect to your questions we came to something that

19     was supposed to be my conclusion with the witness; that is to say, how

20     and why the HVO secured the buses, whether it was just responding to a

21     request from the BH Army or, alternatively, was it assistance to the HVO

22     so that Sefer Halilovic could cleanse Sovici and Doljani, or, as a third

23     possibility, that the HVO independently ethnically cleansed Sovici and

24     Doljani.  I would like to assure you that I intend to discuss this matter

25     with the witness, but could you allow me to conduct my

Page 47513

 1     examination-in-chief as I had planned to do?  And when I complete my

 2     examination, if I don't succeed in receiving an answer or fail to raise

 3     those very important questions, then you can, of course, step in.

 4        Q.   Witness, one more question on the document that I assume is still

 5     on our screens, your request about the buses or query about the buses.

 6     The last sentence:

 7             "If they have, where do they come from?"

 8             Does that sentence relate to the buses who were supposed to come

 9     to Sovici and Doljani?

10        A.   Yes, the buses.

11        Q.   Now let's look at the next document, which is 4D447, and it's a

12     document from the BH Army, a report dated the 4th of May.  And roughly in

13     the middle of that document, it says that:

14             "For tomorrow, we have agreed the unconditional evacuation of the

15     civilian population from Doljani and Sovici."

16             My question to you, General, is this:  In your opinion and to the

17     best of your knowledge at the time, was it the evacuation of the civilian

18     population which the HVO -- and the HVO laid down no conditions; is that

19     what it's about?

20             MR. SCOTT:  Excuse me, Your Honour.  The witness said a few

21     moments ago, under oath, that he knew nothing about what happened in

22     Sovici/Doljani, so I don't understand how he can answer these questions.

23     He said earlier this afternoon, on page 24 of the transcript:

24             "I didn't go to Sovici and Doljani, so I don't know what they

25     were dealing with there."

Page 47514

 1             He's never been there, doesn't know anything about it, I have no

 2     idea how these questions can be put to him.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.  But, Mr. Scott, at face

 4     value you are no doubt right, but the problem regarding this document is

 5     that the document shows that there was a meeting, and apparently the

 6     witness attended the meeting.  So even though he doesn't know those two

 7     villages, it may be that he knew or heard from Mr. Halilovic that the

 8     civilian population had to be evacuated; hence the document, the BH Army

 9     document.  But you're right, he did say that he did not know what

10     happened in those villages.  But we're going to see more clearly through

11     Ms. Alaburic's questions.

12             MR. SCOTT:  Well, further on that, Your Honour, just for one more

13     moment, Your Honour, excuse me --

14             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please.

15             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Scott.

16             MR. SCOTT:  I also just remind -- I'll remind the Chamber of the

17     Judges, your questions, before the break and questions as to why he --

18     how he didn't know that there were civilians in the area and how -- what

19     he had thought was going on.  And again, Your Honour, I take it when you

20     take the answers to Your Honours' questions, the President's questions,

21     and Judge Trechsel's questions before the break, and his testimony that

22     he didn't know what was happening there, had never been there, didn't

23     know what they were dealing with, but again he has no basis to answer

24     these questions?

25             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, let me explain.

Page 47515

 1             I'm not asking the witness about the events in Sovici and Doljani

 2     now, in the sense of war activities.  I'm asking the witness about the

 3     evacuation of the civilian population from Doljani and Sovici, and I'd

 4     like to remind you of two statements made by the witness.  First of all,

 5     he said, when first asked, that he knew nothing about it, and he didn't

 6     even know where Sovici and Doljani were located, but then he went on to

 7     say that he talked about it to Arif Pasalic, and then mentions Zuka, and

 8     Cibo, and polo, and all the rest of them.  So what the witness learnt in

 9     talking to these people, we'll hear about that later on.  But now what

10     I'm asking -- I'm asking this witness -- well, if the witness knows

11     nothing about the topic of the evacuation and the conditions of the HVO,

12     the witness will be able to say so.  So there's no fear that the witness

13     won't answer in the manner in which he thinks best, under oath or not.

14        Q.   Now, my question to you, General:  To the best of your knowledge,

15     did the HVO place any conditions for the civilian population to be

16     evacuated from Sovici and Doljani, lay any conditions?

17             MR. SCOTT:  Excuse me, Your Honour.  I'm going to object to the

18     use of the term "evacuation."  It's an argumentative term.  The term --

19     she can talk about transportation, the people were transported.

20             Of course, in the Tuta Stela case, both the Trial Chamber and the

21     Appeals Chamber rejected any notion that this was an evacuation, clearly

22     concluded that.  That's an adjudicated fact found in this case.  It was

23     not an evacuation, could not have been an evacuation.  And if counsel

24     wants to pursue the matter further, she should, please, use a neutral

25     term and not "evacuation."

Page 47516

 1             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Scott, regarding your

 2     objections, let me read out what Judge Robinson said in the Kordic case,

 3     that you know perfectly well.  On page 17140, this is what Judge Robinson

 4     said:

 5             "Mr. Sayers, the less objections you raise, the faster we will

 6     move on.  I'm going to listen to you.  However, I wish to remind you that

 7     you were interrupted only very rarely during cross-examination conducted

 8     by you, and remember to behave in a similar fashion."

 9             So Judge Robinson, who's now the President of the Tribunal, who's

10     a very experienced man, who is of a common-law tradition, remembers and

11     reminds that the lawyer isn't supposed to raise objections for

12     objection's sake; it's a waste of time.

13             We understood your first objection.  Ms. Alaburic was made aware

14     of the problem, which she understood, and no doubt she's going to put

15     questions in order to highlight what the witness knew or did not know.

16     And thereafter, the Judges will rule.

17             Please continue, Ms. Alaburic.

18             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if you allow me just

19     a sentence to respond to my learned friend Scott concerning adjudicated

20     facts from the Tuta Stela case.

21             From his remark, I would conclude that Mr. Scott is not familiar

22     with the fact that adjudicated facts can be challenged in this

23     proceedings.  I would like to say that I'm well familiar with adjudicated

24     facts from the Tuta Stela case, and this is because -- exactly why I'm

25     trying to challenge them using BiH Army documents and not HVO documents,

Page 47517

 1     because I want for the facts to be determined accurately and

 2     comprehensively.

 3             So my question to the witness, the witness uses the term

 4     "evacuation" because this term is used by the BiH Army, 44th Mountain

 5     Brigade Security Sector.

 6        Q.   My question to you is:  From your knowledge of that day, did HVO

 7     impose any conditions on the evacuation of the civilian population from

 8     Sovici and Doljani?

 9        A.   No, there were no conditions imposed.

10        Q.   Witness, please, at that point in time did you know that the

11     Croatian population from that part of the Jablanica municipality had been

12     evacuated in the direction of Posusje?

13        A.   I had no knowledge of that.

14        Q.   Fine.  Please, Witness, after first learning about Sovici and

15     Doljani, did you try to find out from anybody what had happened, really,

16     in those villages in the municipality of Jablanica?

17        A.   Since this emerged as the main problem after the first meeting, I

18     tried to quiz the immediate actors who were at that meeting, and

19     subsequently I tried to find out what had happened.  The commander of the

20     Herceg Stjepan Brigade was among them.  I believe the family name was

21     Sagolj, aka Piske, and the battalion commander within that brigade, in

22     charge of Sovici and Doljani, I remembered him as "Marco Polo," but his

23     name was Stipo or Cipe, on the one hand.  And on the other hand, I spoke

24     to Zuka, Nihad, and Cibo about the same thing, and I tried to compose a

25     picture of those events in my mind of those events in that cluster of

Page 47518

 1     villages in that valley, bearing in mind my experiences of events in

 2     other areas, because I did not fall from Mars there.  So my knowledge

 3     about Sovici and Doljani in those days was complete for my purposes, in

 4     my capacity as a member of the Joint Command.

 5        Q.   I'm going to ask you a series of questions, and depending on your

 6     answers, you should tell us whether you learned that from Muslims or

 7     Croats.

 8             In Sovici and Doljani, were there any murdered civilians?

 9        A.   In Sovici and Doljani, there were no civilians killed, and there

10     was no destruction, as was customary in other places.

11        Q.   General, did you receive any information to the effect that in

12     Sovici and Doljani, any Muslim woman had been raped?

13        A.   I am surprised by this question, but this never cropped up in any

14     negotiations as an issue.  So my answer is, No.

15             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Excuse me.

16             Witness, you say that you have not been in Sovici and Doljani.

17     Did I understand that correctly?

18             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I, personally, was not there.  I

19     visited other axes, Kostajnica and Konjic.

20             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  So it is simply hearsay when you affirm today

21     that there are no destructions there?

22             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it was second-hand

23     information, but from both sides to the conflict.  I did not rely upon

24     only information from one side.

25             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Thank you.

Page 47519

 1             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

 2        Q.   General, please tell us, what did you hear?  What was the main

 3     problem at Sovici and Doljani?  What crime did happen there?

 4             MR. SCOTT:  Excuse me, Your Honour.  Perhaps he could tell us the

 5     source of this information, too, so we could have a chance to check on

 6     it, rather than general, vague allegations.

 7             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to

 8     remind everybody that the witness precisely said who he spoke to on the

 9     Croatian side and on the Muslim side.  So, please, my learned friend

10     Scott should peruse the transcript and then clarify the matter in his

11     cross-examination.

12             MR. SCOTT:  Well, Your Honour, I want to know who said what.  I

13     don't want just general things floating around about he talked to three

14     or four nameless people or people we don't know who they are, and then

15     just said, Someone told me that.  I want to know who told him which

16     specific things so that, if necessary, I can send investigators into the

17     field to contact those people and see if it's true.

18             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, in order not to waste

19     any time, can you tell us who told you what, specifically?  Or it may be

20     that you can't remember, which is perfectly comprehensible.  But if you

21     do remember, who told you what?

22             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Piske, the brigade commander - I

23     believe his family name was Sagolj - told me that two brigades attacked

24     his brigade from the north and the east, the Konjic Brigade and the

25     Neretvica Brigade respectively, and that from behind he was attacked by

Page 47520

 1     the Jablanica Brigade, brigades of the Territorial Defence of the Army of

 2     BiH, in the direction of Kostajnica and Boksevica.  In the latter case,

 3     the case of the Jablanica Brigade of the Territorial Defence, at one

 4     point they cut off the communication or captured the saddle named

 5     "Sovicka Vrata," which is the part or section on the salvation road, as

 6     we called it.  It is a watershed between the Rama Valley and the Listica

 7     Valley or the Blidnje lake, and by doing so they cut off and encircled

 8     his battalion.  And heading that battalion was Stjepan Tole -- sorry,

 9     Stjepan Polo.  Well, "Marco Polo" was the way I remembered his name.  So

10     this was this battalion encircled, and that battalion belonged to the

11     aforementioned brigade.

12             Then, by an action of the HVO or, if I'm not mistaken, by an

13     action of a battalion, the so-called Convicts Battalion, they resolved

14     the issue of the Sovici gateway or the saddle, and they lifted the

15     encirclement around that battalion, and allegedly everything calmed down.

16             In later combat two or three days subsequently, part of the

17     Convicts Battalion, or elements of that battalion, intervened, or

18     attacked, or defended themselves at a feature where this one Cikota was

19     killed, and he was one of the commanders or heroes from the ranks of that

20     unit.

21             When they buried Cikota, they came to that village and raised

22     hell, in terms of harassing the population, torching the houses, and Polo

23     stood up to them, and he told me that he even reported that to the

24     Main Staff.  I tried to verify those facts from Zuka and Nihad who are,

25     on the other side, were in charge of that situation.  Of course, they

Page 47521

 1     interpret the events differently, and Zuka told me, What do you mean,

 2     Sovici gateway?  It's impossible for there not to have been harassment,

 3     and that they had not captured the Sovici gateway, and that they had not

 4     been there, and that everything was invented by Piske and Polo.

 5             If I may continue.  So when they buried that individual Cikota,

 6     they came there, they raised hell, but there were no casualties,

 7     reportedly.  There were some houses torched, and the population was

 8     afraid, and the population was then supposed to be sent to Jablanica, but

 9     was directed instead towards Prozor and Gornji Vakuf.

10             And from Arif Pasalic, the subsequent day he sought from me oil

11     or fuel and buses to bus people from Gornji Vakuf to Jablanica, so I

12     found out then that they had not gone to Jablanica, but to Gornji Vakuf.

13     I also learned later on why they had not been taken to Jablanica; because

14     of the marble blocks on the road disrupting traffic.  This is what I

15     learned from Piske and Polo and, on the other hand, from Zuka and Nihad.

16             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

17        Q.   General, I'm going to show you a statement of a witness in this

18     courtroom.  I tried to find out whether it was a protected witness.  I

19     hope I'm not going to make a mistake.  His name is Nihad Kovac.  He was a

20     witness of Sovici and Doljani.  10307 is the page of the transcript, and

21     we have his words.

22             In a statement he prepared for the Prosecution, and during

23     examination by the Prosecutor, he said that the houses in Sovici and

24     Doljani were torched on the 18th, maybe later, maybe after the 20th.  And

25     during my cross-examination, I asked him to focus and try to tell us

Page 47522

 1     precisely whether the houses had been torched on the 18th or on the 21st,

 2     because it was extremely important for us in this case.  And Nihad Kovac

 3     said that he thought that the houses were torched on the 21st, and that

 4     was the day after the burial of Cikota, one of the commanders in the

 5     Convicts Battalion.

 6             Tell us, what you heard from Nihad Kovac, is that the same what

 7     you learned with the interlocutors that you named?

 8        A.   As I've already said, after the intervention in the area of the

 9     Sovici gateway and control of the overall territory, everything calmed

10     down.  What I do know, that the population was harassed and the houses

11     were torched later on.

12        Q.   Fine, General.  Let's take a look at the next document, P2195.

13     It is an information produced by the BiH Army, signed by

14     Enver Zejnilagic, and it discusses the Halilovic-Petkovic agreement, but

15     also says that the HVO, at their own initiative, sent the civilians to

16     Gornji Vakuf.

17             You, Witness, said that you heard about the civilians from

18     Sovici/Doljani being directed towards Gornji Vakuf.  Does this document

19     correspond to your knowledge of the matter of the time?

20        A.   Yes, they were supposed to go to Jablanica initially, but I

21     learned that they went to Gornji Vakuf because of the road being blocked.

22        Q.   Thank you.  Let's take a look at the next document, 4D1079,

23     4D1079.  The second page, under item 1 of this document, a commission

24     comprised of two representatives of the Croatian side say:

25             "One of the commissions visited areas of Sovici, Doljani, and

Page 47523

 1     Slatina in the presence of General Petkovic and Halilovic.  Everything

 2     asked was realised."

 3             Please tell us, General, did the Muslim side require the Croatian

 4     side of the HVO to get the buses for the transport of the Sovici and

 5     Doljani civilians?

 6        A.   In this whole case, there's no doubt about it, because Arif

 7     subsequently sought that I provide the fuel for the buses to transport

 8     them back, which means that the Muslim side required the transport of

 9     those civilians.

10        Q.   Let's take a look at the next document, 4D430.  This is another

11     BiH Army document.  In the lower part of the document, towards the end,

12     dated on the 17th of April, 1993, so this was way before this evacuation,

13     it is stated:

14             "The Gornji Vakuf-Prozor-Jablanica road is prepared for

15     completion, and in a section of the road in the village of Gornja Slatina

16     there are obstructions made of granite blocks which cannot be moved, so

17     passage is possible only by small passenger vehicles in emergency cases."

18             And there is another document discussing the same topic, the

19     other being P1911.  I'm going to ask you questions about both.  And this

20     is a document by the European Union Monitoring Mission or European

21     Community Monitoring Mission.

22             Item 5(b), it is stated that on the approach-way from Prozor to

23     Jablanica by Slatina, there is a strong fortified position where passage

24     of vehicles is barred by large granite blocks.

25             General, please tell us whether these reports correspond to your

Page 47524

 1     knowledge about the obstructions on the road towards Jablanica.

 2        A.   From these documents, from the descriptions, I can say that this

 3     is the obstruction that we discussed.

 4        Q.   Let's take a look at P2825.

 5             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Again, Witness, I would like to know:  Did you

 6     actually see the blocks or is this also hearsay?

 7             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not see those blocks because

 8     I did not go in that direction.

 9             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Thank you.

10             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

11        Q.   Witness, please tell us -- you've already told us that are not an

12     immediate eye-witness in that area, but could you tell us whether you had

13     any cause to doubt BiH Army officers and European Monitoring Mission

14     members, or other people you spoke to would lie about obstructions on

15     that road, barring large vehicles from passing the place?

16        A.   You know, there is a quarry very close by, and there are huge

17     blocks, five- ten-ton blocks.  There's plenty of that.  I don't know what

18     was the size of those blocks on the road, but there's no doubt and

19     there's no cause for them to lie.  First of all, this is not an HVO

20     source, and, on the other hand, these are professionals.

21        Q.   Fine.  Let's take a look at P2825.  This is an SIS Information

22     from the North-West Herzegovina Operations Zone which states that in the

23     period from the 10th to the 15th of June, 1993, from Gornji Vakuf via

24     Dobrosine and Privor and further down the road towards Jablanica, eight

25     buses carrying refugees passed.  Those refugees come from Doljani and

Page 47525

 1     Sovici.  They were transferred to Gornji Vakuf, and now they're being

 2     transferred to Jablanica.

 3             General, please tell us, did you have knowledge that ultimately

 4     civilians of Muslim ethnicity were transferred to Jablanica, as had been

 5     promised to them by Sefer Halilovic?

 6        A.   I didn't have any knowledge about that.  And on the 18th of June,

 7     at that period, I was in Central Bosnia.  I could have learnt about it,

 8     but not in any such detail.

 9        Q.   When Arif Pasalic asked you to secure fuel, petrol, and the buses

10     for the inhabitants of Sovici and Doljani to be transferred from

11     Gornji Vakuf to Jablanica, did you undertake anything in respect of that

12     request, demand?

13        A.   Well, I insisted with the Main Staff.  I prevailed upon them to

14     see that it was carried out.  Now, why they didn't go to Jablanica, I

15     don't know, and all these problems about the check-points along the way

16     and so on.  But you're asking me about the document dated the 18th of

17     June.

18        Q.   It doesn't say when.

19        A.   I don't know exactly when they were sent back, the people from

20     Gornji Vakuf, to Jablanica.

21        Q.   Very well, General.  Now, on the basis of all the knowledge you

22     have about the events --

23             MR. SCOTT:  Excuse me.  Before you continue on, if counsel could

24     assist us with clarifying the question on page 40, line 4:

25             "When Arif Pasalic asked you to secure fuel, petrol, and the

Page 47526

 1     buses for the inhabitants of Sovici and Doljani to be transferred from

 2     Gornji Vakuf to Jablanica," if my memory is mistaken, I apologise, but

 3     the only testimony I recall so far is the arrangement of buses to take

 4     people from Sovici to somewhere else, and it turned out that the

 5     allegation is instead of going to Jablanica it went to Gornji Vakuf, and

 6     I don't recall any evidence about there being a second arrangement for

 7     buses to go -- for Mr. Pasalic to go from Gornji Vakuf to Jablanica.  And

 8     if I'm mistaken, if that can be indicated, I'll appreciate it.

 9             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Well, I can tell my learned friend

10     Mr. Scott that he's wrong, because the witness said quite clearly that

11     from Arif Pasalic he learned that the civilians had been transferred to

12     Gornji Vakuf and not to Jablanica.

13             But anyway, Witness, you can tell us that yourself, but I don't

14     want this to be deducted from my own time.

15        Q.   Tell us, Witness, when and how did you learn that the civilians

16     had gone to Gornji Vakuf and what did you talk about to Pasalic?

17        A.   Already the next day, I think it was the 6th, Arif Pasalic was

18     very angry and asked why the civilians had gone to Gornji Vakuf, and he

19     said that I should secure the fuel needed - I didn't have any fuels - and

20     get the buses to return these civilians to Jablanica.  So that was his

21     ultimatum.  He wanted the population to be returned to Jablanica.  And

22     that's when I learnt that this transport had been carried out, as I asked

23     about the buses, and it wasn't to Jablanica but to Gornji Vakuf, and now

24     what had to be organised was the return of these people to Jablanica.

25     And I -- well, with all the other problems that I had to solve, Pasalic

Page 47527

 1     and I and all those meetings that we had and so on, I don't know exactly

 2     when they were returned.  And from this document, the 6th, I see that I

 3     wasn't there already at that time, but I don't know what the exact date

 4     was and whether they were returned at all.

 5        Q.   Tell us, General, this request from Arif Pasalic, did you convey

 6     it to the Main Staff for them to find buses and so that the inhabitants

 7     of Sovici and Doljani could be transported from Gornji Vakuf to

 8     Jablanica?

 9        A.   Well, you know, you get up in the morning at 5.00 or 6.00 a.m.,

10     you get into an IPS, and you go to Jablanica, or Konjic, or wherever

11     else.  You spend the whole day there.  When you come back in the evening,

12     you take out your little notebook to see what you need to do, and I'm

13     sure that I conveyed this request for this.

14             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  May I?  Excuse me.

15             Witness, maybe I have missed something and ought to know; then,

16     please, I apologise.  I would like to know who actually put those granite

17     blocks on the road.

18             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The TO, or, rather, the BH Army.

19             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Did --

20             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I assume, that is, because given

21     the place that it was at, it must have been the BH Army.

22             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  I find it difficult to understand, having some

23     familiarity with what the military can do, why they were not blown up.

24     Blocks can be blown up.  You have lots of explosives.  You drill a hole,

25     you put in an explosive, you close it, and, boom, the block is

Page 47528

 1     manageable.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.

 3             THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] And where would we get

 4     explosives from, Your Honour Judge Trechsel?  Where would we get the

 5     explosives from?

 6             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  I did not ask a question of you.  I'm sorry.

 7             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Praljak, please let the

 8     witness answer.  He has the same competence as you, and he can answer

 9     this technical question put to him by a Judge.

10             THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Judge Trechsel said that

11     it's easy in the army, it's easy to deal with that.

12             THE INTERPRETER:  Microphone.

13             THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] He says it's easy; you just

14     get some explosives, warehouses are full of explosives, and then you just

15     blow it up.

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, what's your answer?

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've already said that the blocks

18     were heavy, they were large blocks.  I don't know how they managed to put

19     them there in the first place, but probably they rolled them there.  But

20     to remove them would be a greater problem.  I don't know how Petkovic and

21     Sefer managed to pass through at all.  Perhaps smaller vehicles were able

22     to pass through, but buses or large trucks with trailers, they wouldn't

23     be able to pass.  But to remove this obstacle was a very difficult thing

24     to do.

25             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we will soon have the

Page 47529

 1     opportunity to ask General Petkovic about these granite blocks as well,

 2     but let's return to Arif Pasalic now.

 3        Q.   Anyway, you were with him for quite a long time during those

 4     days; isn't that right, General?

 5        A.   Yes.

 6        Q.   Tell us, please, did you, at some time in that first half of May

 7     1993, go back to the Mostar area with Arif Pasalic from this area of

 8     Jablanica and Konjic?

 9        A.   At least two or three times together in an APC.

10        Q.   So you were together in one APC, were you?

11        A.   Yes.

12        Q.   I'm interested in your return on the 8th of May, 1993.

13        A.   On the 8th of May, 1993, we were in Jablanica, and in Konjic, for

14     that matter, and then we stayed for quite some time, and it was already

15     getting dark when we left Jablanica with these APCs.  Carlos was the

16     commander, and the journey -- well, you couldn't see anything through

17     those slits on the APC.  We arrived -- I was already sleeping, but we

18     reached Dracevo, and Dracevo is south of Capljina, near Metkovici.  It

19     was the headquarters or base of the battalion and its unit.  And suddenly

20     we stepped down from the APC.  There was some white containers.  And they

21     asked us whether we were going to stay together or whether we would

22     continue on separately.  But Arif Pasalic and I, for four days, were

23     stopped by UNPROFOR.  There were guards.

24             Just let me paint this picture.  If I wanted to go to the toilet,

25     for example, I'd open the door and I'd have a rifle cocked at me.  I went

Page 47530

 1     to search for the toilet.  He said, Wait.  Ten minutes later, a jeep

 2     turned up with a driver and two soldiers at the back.  I got into the

 3     jeep.  They drove me 50 metres off to the toilet, and I returned.  So we

 4     were guarded in this way.

 5             So that four days later, Sefer and Petkovic arrived, and the two

 6     of us went to Medjugorje, for direct negotiations there that were being

 7     held in Medjugorje.

 8        Q.   General, the Prosecutor claimed in these proceedings that the HVO

 9     prevented the exit of Sefer Halilovic on that day, the 8th or 9th of May,

10     1993, in Mostar because -- "Pasalic," I meant to say.  The departure of

11     Arif Pasalic, I meant to say, Arif Pasalic's departure during those days

12     in the Mostar area.  And the reason they gave was that the HVO was

13     preparing an attack against the BH Army in Mostar, that that was the

14     reason, and that this conduct towards Arif Pasalic, he wanted to leave

15     the BH Army without the number-one man.

16             So can you now, General, comment on this assertion made?  Was

17     that the truth of it or not?

18        A.   The route we followed passes mostly through an area controlled by

19     the BH Army, and I don't know how the HVO could prevent Arif Pasalic from

20     leaving the APC.

21             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, General.

22             Your Honours, that completes the topic of Sovici and Doljani, if

23     anybody has some questions to ask on that topic.

24             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I listened very

25     carefully to the questions put to you by Ms. Alaburic.  When she asked

Page 47531

 1     all these questions on May 8th, I listened even more closely.

 2             If I understand you correctly, on May 8, 1993, you are with

 3     Arif Pasalic, and you are in an armoured vehicle, the both of you, plus

 4     Carlos and a fourth person, because I believe that you said there were

 5     four of you in the APC.  You said, I slept, and then we arrived, and we

 6     were guarded for four days.  So that means 8 May plus four days, that's

 7     May 12.

 8             On May 9, an event occurred in Mostar, and the Trial Chamber will

 9     have to determine who actually attacked, whether it was the BH Army or

10     the HVO.

11             Let's assume that the BH Army attacked.  The commander of the

12     4th Corps is Mr. Arif Pasalic, but he's with you on May 9.  And according

13     to what you say, it seems that you were more or less prisoner, a prisoner

14     of the international forces.  If you had to go to the toilet, you had to

15     have an escort.

16             Now, here are my questions:  First, why did the international

17     forces keep you for four days?

18             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Because later on I learnt -- or,

19     rather, on the second and third day, judging by the artillery fire, I

20     realised that there was a conflict going on, and probably during that

21     conflict they kept us in Mostar.  Two or three days later, I learned

22     about this.  Or they couldn't, perhaps, transfer us elsewhere, so I was

23     held there.

24             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] What you are telling us is very

25     new.  We never heard of this.  So you were arrested, but you were not the

Page 47532

 1     only one; Pasalic also was under arrest?

 2             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Pasalic too.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Militarily-wise, if the BH Army

 4     attacks the HVO, does this mean that his commander, Mr. Pasalic, needs to

 5     be there?

 6             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The whole day of the 8th, and on

 7     the 6th and 7th, he was attending negotiations, trying to solve the

 8     problem in Konjic and Jablanica.  So the whole day on the 8th, as well,

 9     he was in Konjic and Jablanica.  We set out in the evening, when it grew

10     dark.  Now, where he should have been, in my view, he should have been

11     where he was, since we were solving -- trying to resolve this problem of

12     the conflict, and we'd been doing that for the past fortnight.

13             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] During four days you spent with

14     him, was it possible for you to communicate or to contact your own

15     soldiers or your own line of command?  What about him; was he able to

16     call Halilovic or not?  Were you really under arrest, in custody?

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They didn't give us any

18     transistors, or radios, or newspapers or any information whatsoever for

19     the first three days.  It was only on the fourth day that the commander

20     organised a lunch with us, and these two men came at that moment and took

21     us to Medjugorje.

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We have heard a whole series --

23     a whole battalion of people who came to testify, and if I had known this,

24     I would have put this question to them.  I would have asked them why they

25     kept a high military representative of the HVO, i.e., you, and

Page 47533

 1     Mr. Pasalic in custody for four days.  I would have been very interested

 2     in their answer.  Unfortunately, I'm just discovering this after the

 3     fact.

 4             Let's go back to Sovici and Doljani.  Ms. Alaburic did not really

 5     spend a lot of time on these issues.  I believe that she's waiting for

 6     Mr. Petkovic to testify to go into details.  But you briefly skimmed on a

 7     number of things, and they drew my attention.

 8             Cikota was killed, and then he's buried.  Unless I'm wrong, I

 9     believe that when General Praljak was testifying, he said he went to his

10     burial and then he left.  Now, you are saying that after the burial, the

11     soldiers of the Convicts Battalion went over there and abused the local

12     population.  You said this, and no one reacted.  But according to what

13     you know, can you confirm that the events which occurred in Sovici and

14     Doljani were carried out by soldiers of the Convicts Battalion who went

15     there after Cikota's burial, maybe to commit this abuse, maybe for

16     retaliation, or I don't know for what reason?

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As for Praljak, I don't know about

18     that.  I don't know that he was attending a burial funeral.  But from

19     talking to Marko Polo, or Stipo Polo, rather, it was clear that they went

20     to the village after the funeral and all hell broke loose there - that's

21     what I realised after the burial - out of hatred or retaliation or

22     whatever.

23             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation]  In the Kordic case, and I

24     could show you that questions and answers were asked publicly and this is

25     public knowledge, out of memory -- I don't have the page with me, but out

Page 47534

 1     of memory, I think you said that according to you, there were some rogue

 2     units.  Now, can you tell us whether the Convicts Battalion was actually

 3     controlled by the HVO?

 4             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There were units at both sides

 5     which were and were not under control.  They were because they're part of

 6     the composition of the HVO, when they had to receive something from the

 7     HVO.  But when they wanted to do something or not to do something, to go

 8     to the defence line, then they were not under control.  There were groups

 9     of people or units whose use could be questionable in comparison with

10     other units.

11             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You're not really answering the

12     question.  I would like to know whether the Convicts Battalion was

13     controlled by the HVO.  Yes or no?

14             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know about the group Vitezovi or

15     Knights in Vitez.  I don't know about the Convicts Battalion.  Most

16     probably, it wasn't.  I don't know.  I cannot confirm either way because

17     I was not in that area.

18             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You don't know.  Very well.

19     But you added that the Vitezovi were rogue, were a rogue unit?

20             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I could not command them.  I

21     could not instruct them to go to the defence line, like I could in the

22     case of other units.

23             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And why is that?

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Because from the very beginning

25     they were an HOS unit which was not part of the HVO, but later on it was

Page 47535

 1     part of the HVO.  It was headed by Darko Kraljevic, who was as he was.

 2     He, in the darkest hours for Vitez, he managed to get a special status

 3     for him and his unit to hold as much defence line as he wanted, and he

 4     was different from the other units.

 5             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

 6             Ms. Alaburic, I believe you have 35 minutes left.

 7             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.  I almost

 8     thought there was 37, not 35.  Well, it was a mistake in translation.

 9        Q.   Now, General, let's discuss joint command and joint commission.

10     First, let's take a look at 1467.

11             Your Honours, that would be in the first binder.  It could be the

12     last or the penultimate block of issues.

13             General, please look at the screen so that we don't waste time

14     looking for the documents.  I'm going to ask you simple questions.

15             So it would be P1467.  It is an order by Sefer Halilovic and

16     Milivoj Petkovic, dated 11th of February, 1993, stating that the

17     commanders of the 3rd Corps of the army and the HVO operations zone

18     establish a joint co-ordinations team comprised of three members per

19     side, and then there is a list of definitions of that team's tasks.

20             General, you can see the first page of this document.  Tell us,

21     did you know that in mid-February a co-ordinations team was established,

22     headed by Hadzihasanovic and Blaskic?

23        A.   Yes.

24        Q.   Let's take a look at the next document, 4D1205.

25             General, I'm shifting my sequence of documents.  Please take a

Page 47536

 1     look at the screen.

 2             Sir, this is a set of documents co-signed by Blaskic and

 3     Hadzihasanovic.  Each of them pertains to a different topic.  I'm going

 4     to list all of them, and finally I'm going to ask you, General, whether

 5     you had any knowledge of those orders and whether they had been carried

 6     out.

 7             The first of all is to remove all roadblocks and obstacles from

 8     all communications.  The second is at the level of all municipalities,

 9     commissions should be established to work towards calming down the

10     situation.  The third was to fill with earth all trenches and bunkers,

11     and after the withdrawal of units from the contact line, that all places

12     to be visited and toured.  Fourth, that all transports which had been

13     stopped should be let through to get to their destinations.  Fifth, to

14     form check-points to control the goods, to be manned by the

15     representatives of the two armies, together with civilian

16     representatives.  The sixth, to release all prisoners unconditionally,

17     prisoners and detained persons.  The seventh, to secure the conditions

18     for the return of those who are refugees.  The next is to urgently

19     withdraw units from the contact line.

20             So, General, these orders are dated the 13th of February, 1993.

21     Did you know that Hadzihasanovic and Blaskic had issued orders of this

22     kind?

23        A.   Yes.  This was a practice throughout that time, first conflict

24     and then trying to resolve it.

25             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'm skipping four

Page 47537

 1     documents, if you are trying to follow me in your binders.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just a follow-up question.

 3             Earlier on, we saw a document signed by the 3rd Corps commander.

 4     That was speaking about the roadblocks, or the marble blocks, rather, on

 5     the road, and this is confirmed in the document by Hadzihasanovic.  So

 6     what you observed is supported by this document.  But this makes me

 7     revisit the question put by my fellow Judge, without an answer.  You

 8     said, Well, if there are blocks on the road, you can push them aside.  If

 9     they're so big that you can't push them aside, can't you use explosives

10     to destroy them, by digging a hole into them and putting dynamite to blow

11     them up?  And if you don't have the equipment, can't you turn to the

12     Logistics Section in your brigade, or in the operative zone, or still in

13     the headquarters, for them to provide you with the explosives in order to

14     blow up the blocks that prevent traffic?  That is an everyday occurrence,

15     isn't it?

16             When I was in Switzerland, I saw blocks that had fallen on the

17     road, and you have some people in charge of maintaining the roads that do

18     that every day.

19             Were you that deprived?  Because that seems to be what

20     General Praljak says.

21             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] An obstacle may be removed in a

22     certain way, using a certain method, if there is the will to remove it.

23     If there's the will to remove it, there will be a way to do it, if

24     there's time; maybe a big vehicle to drag it away, or by explosives,

25     depending on the type of the obstacle.  If there is a will to remove it,

Page 47538

 1     it can be removed using an appropriate method.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I see.  So when there's a will,

 3     there's a way.  But obviously there was no will here; is that so?

 4             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

 5             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

 6             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

 7        Q.   General, please tell us who removes obstacles in which territory?

 8     Would the HVO remove obstacles in the area controlled by the Croats or

 9     would they go into the Muslim-controlled territory to remove obstacles?

10        A.   If the Territorial Defence is removing an HVO obstacle, then

11     conflict ensues, combat ensues, and vice versa.  If there is an obstacle

12     introduced by the TO or the Army of BiH, then they have to remove it,

13     otherwise there is conflict, conflagration.

14        Q.   Do I understand you correctly?  Each side should remove obstacles

15     in their territory if they want to do so?

16        A.   Yes, if in Ahmici the obstacle is there, then the TO or the BiH

17     Army has to remove it.  Otherwise, the HVO must use armed force to do it,

18     or conversely in Jablanica, but in the period of agreements or talks, so

19     conflicts are out of the question.  Now, it only boils down to the method

20     to remove the obstacle in question.

21        Q.   Fine, General.  Let's discuss joint command.  Let's take a look

22     at 4D455.  The document will be shown on your screen.

23             And before it appears on the screen, I will describe it.  It is a

24     decision on the appointment of members of the Joint Command of the HVO

25     and the ABiH, the nomination of the Croatian representatives to that

Page 47539

 1     body, signed by the chief of the Main Staff of the HVO.  It is dated the

 2     26th of April, 1993, and here, General, we can see that on behalf of the

 3     Croats, you, Mario Andric and Zuka Totic are nominated into that Joint

 4     Command.

 5             Please tell us, General, were you really nominated into the

 6     Joint Command?

 7        A.   Yes.  Totic was nominated or was supposed to be appointed at my

 8     insistence to free him from captivity, because the Mujahedin had him

 9     captured, and so I wanted to release him by him being nominated.

10        Q.   Fine.  And from this document on nomination, it follows that

11     joint commands have been established at the levels of operations zones

12     and corps levels.  Was this so, General?

13        A.   Yes.  I can list you the names of the people at least in the

14     military district or the corps, where their seats were, et cetera.

15        Q.   I would like to do so had we had time, but let's look at the next

16     document, P2155.

17             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment, General.  You said

18     so in the Kordic case, when you testified about Totic, you said that he

19     had been appointed because he had been detained and that was a way of

20     releasing -- or having him released.

21             Now, we have here an appointment.  It is dated the 26th of April.

22     General Petkovic is the one who is appointing him and signed the text,

23     but he signed on a proposal coming from you or was it his own idea to

24     appoint Totic to the Joint Command to exert pressure on the BH Army?

25             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The order dated 26th was the

Page 47540

 1     culmination of the preceding activities concerning the nomination and

 2     appointment.  Previously, I had been quizzed whether I would concede to

 3     go to the Joint Command, and I acceded to that suggestion.  And so in our

 4     talks, I don't know whether Blaskic or Petkovic, because we'd met this

 5     day, I insisted for Totic to be released.  He was from my tactical group,

 6     a commander in Zenica.  This is what I had insisted on, and Petkovic must

 7     have acceded to that because eventually he signed that order.

 8             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] This is very well.

 9             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Let's take the next document.

10        Q.   P2155 is going to appear on your screen?  It is an order

11     co-signed by Petkovic and Halilovic, dated the 30th April 1993,

12     implementation of joint commands at the level of operative zones or

13     corps, and it is stated that that command will be comprised of:

14     Hadzihasanovic, Blaskic, and their deputies, et cetera.

15             General, did you know that Hadzihasanovic and Blaskic would lead

16     the Joint Command at operation zone or corps level.

17        A.   Yes, they did leave, but there were also Nakic.  From the corps

18     of the operations zone, we had Nakic nominated to the Joint Command, and

19     Juric, but I'm not sure about the latter.

20        Q.   Let's take a look at 4D594.

21             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment.

22             Witness, this is one of the very few documents in which we can

23     find "ABiH" and "HVO."  Look at the letterhead of the document.  We can

24     see "Joint Command of the BH Army and HVO."  Under that, there is the

25     reference number.  It's "Broj" in your language, isn't it, "1-2"?  Can

Page 47541

 1     you confirm that this is one of the first documents co-signed by

 2     General Petkovic and General Halilovic?

 3             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From the position of the

 4     Joint Command, yes, but they signed some other documents.  But, yes, with

 5     respect to the Joint Command, this concerns Zenica.  I wasn't in Zenica.

 6     I was shown the apartment where I was supposed to be.  And these are one

 7     of the first documents of the Joint Command.

 8             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You may not have an answer to

 9     this.  You never know.  But, you know, Judges are curious by nature, they

10     put questions, and then sometimes the answer crops up.

11             How is it that in this official document - it was signed by two

12     high-ranking officers - how is it that there's no letterhead saying

13     "Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina"?

14             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I cannot answer this question,

15     whether there's no reference of Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] If I remember the question,

17     I'll put it in due time to General Petkovic.

18             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, let's see who was in

19     the command at the level of the corps of the operative zone.  And for

20     that, let's look at 4D594.

21        Q.   This is an order from Tihomir Blaskic, dated the 1st of May,

22     1993, on the establishment of a joint command of the three armies at the

23     level of the operative zone -- or, rather, corps, and mention is made

24     here of the gentlemen, two of whom you mentioned yourself; is that right,

25     General.

Page 47542

 1        A.   Yes.  I forget to mention Vukovic.

 2        Q.   Right.

 3        A.   That command worked at the level of the operative zone.

 4        Q.   Here's another document on that same topic, P2726, 2726.  It's an

 5     agreement signed in Kiseljak on the 10th of June, 1993, signed by

 6     Petkovic and Rasim Delic.  And in item 2, General, it says here -- or,

 7     rather, your name is mentioned here.  Tell us, please, were you at that

 8     meeting that resulted in this agreement?

 9        A.   Petkovic and I came from the Prozor area.  We went to Kiseljak.

10     And on the 9th, we were supposed to meet with Sefer to discuss the

11     various activities; I mean, Sefer and others.  However, Siber and Karisik

12     came to negotiate, because Petkovic didn't want to talk to a level which

13     was not suitable.  So I talked to them on the first day.  Then Delic

14     arrived on the second day, and the explanation was that there'd been a

15     replacement in the BH Army.  Instead of Sefer Delic [as interpreted],

16     that the number-one man came and these were talks and negotiations.

17     However, after all these talks and negotiations, later on I felt in the

18     field, when I was in the field, well, the worst period in the war started

19     from that point onwards, as far as I'm concerned.

20        Q.   You said "Sefer Delic."  Who was appointed to the function?

21        A.   Delic, Rasim.  Rasim Delic, instead of Sefer Halilovic, is what I

22     meant.  I knew many of these people personally, I knew theirs names,

23     their nicknames, so just ask me if you need explanations.

24        Q.   Just, tell me in a word.  Well, you said that you knew

25     Rasim Delic from before.  What was your opinion of him, as a professional

Page 47543

 1     soldier?

 2        A.   As I said, I knew Delic from 1967.  When he was a cadet, I was a

 3     year older.  I knew him through his years of service.  He replaced me as

 4     Chief of Staff when I went to Derventa.  Anyway, as far as I know, he's

 5     one of the most capable officers that they had, and it seemed logical to

 6     me that this replacement should have taken place, Sefer and Delic.

 7        Q.   Now, General, let's go back to our Central Bosnia of April 1993.

 8             Your Honours, that's the subject that was dealt with in the first

 9     part of the binder, so before the Joint Command issue.

10             I'm going to skip over two documents and move on to 4D --

11             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, regarding the last

12     document that was signed in Kiseljak, were you there?

13             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, both days, both days at the

14     negotiations.

15             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You see, I noted that this

16     document, too, was co-signed by Mr. Jean-Pierre Thebault and by

17     Brigadier Hayes.  Do you remember these two internationals being present?

18             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They were present, but I knew

19     Thebault better because he was in Central Bosnia more than this other

20     one, Hayes.  Morillon was before that, and then Hayes came afterwards.

21     But, yes, I did know them.

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Why did these two individuals

23     co-sign this document?  What did their signature mean?

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What it signified was this:  As

25     witnesses, they confirmed it, they strengthened the agreement.  Their

Page 47544

 1     signatures, first and foremost, meant that they were there when the

 2     agreement was reached, and, secondly, that the international community

 3     stood behind it, supported it.

 4             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.  A bit of a mystery.  This

 5     is a document in B/C/S.  I suppose that Mr. Thebault and Mr. Hayes did

 6     not speak your language; did they?  So how did it take place?  Was it

 7     translated to them, as far as you can remember?

 8             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They always had translators --

 9     interpreters going with them, and the document was harmonised.  They knew

10     what was written in the document.

11             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, since I intend to

12     discuss Central Bosnia as another area with this witness, perhaps we

13     could take a break now, and then I could go into that matter without

14     interruption.

15             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  We're going to

16     break for 20 minutes.

17                           --- Recess taken at 5.36 p.m.

18                           --- On resuming at 5.58 p.m.

19             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The court is back in session.

20             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation].

21        Q.   General, we have half an hour left, roughly, so let's try and

22     deal with Central Bosnia for a bit, and let's start off with April 1993.

23             The first document that I'd like us to discuss is 4D597, and

24     along with that document we have prepared a map.  Their Honours have the

25     map.

Page 47545

 1             May we provide the witness with it, and place it on the ELMO,

 2     please.

 3             In the meantime, let me say that the document that we have before

 4     us now is a preparatory combat order from Tihomir Blaskic of the 15th of

 5     April, 1993.  Otherwise, it's an exhibit in the Blaskic trial.  And we

 6     would like to focus on item 2 of that combat order, where Tihomir Blaskic

 7     assesses the axis of attack by the BH Army.

 8             I hope this time isn't being deducted from my overall time.

 9     Your Honour, I don't think it's fair, really, to deduct time that is

10     needed for documents to be located.

11             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Would you think it would be fair to change the

12     rules at this point in the proceedings?  I don't think so.  I'm sorry.

13     It was fair and unfair to everyone.

14             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic, when you see that

15     the witness finds it hard to locate a document, which is easy to

16     understand, you can tell the usher during the break that you're going to

17     have questions on specific documents, and the usher can find the

18     documents in question and will show them to the witness.  This way, you

19     won't waste any time; on the contrary.

20             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I did provide the usher, during

21     the break, with this map that I intended to have placed on the ELMO, so

22     we're going to work with that map.

23        Q.   General, during the proofing session for your testimony, we

24     prepared this map.  You drew the line there, and we coloured it in blue.

25     On both sides of the blue is green.  And now let's see what

Page 47546

 1     General Blaskic says about the possible axes of attack by the BH Army.

 2     He says that the BH Army most probably could take control of Kuber and

 3     separate it from Vitez, and that is something that is marked with the

 4     number 1.  Is that right, General?

 5        A.   Yes, Kuber, yes, yes.

 6        Q.   Then he goes on to say that the forces of the BH Army want to go

 7     across Potrolica [phoen] and Kuber to link up with their forces in

 8     Vranjska and Kruscica, and this linking up is the number 2 on the map.

 9     So tell us, General, for this link to be effected, they had to go through

10     the territory controlled by the Croatian side; is that right?

11        A.   Yes, certainly.  Here on this map, we can see in greater detail

12     that Santici are along the road, and Ahmici is a village a little further

13     from the road.  But over the past 20 years, the houses have gone lower

14     down, so the concept of Ahmici is used, the name Ahmici is used to denote

15     all this area.

16        Q.   So that is the number 3 on the map?  That is to say, that in

17     Nadioci and Ahmici, blockades are to be set up; right?

18        A.   By the Territorial Defence, that is.

19        Q.   Yes.  So that was Tihomir Blaskic's assessment of the situation.

20     And he also goes on to say that he expects an attack on the fire brigade

21     facility and some other localities.  Now, tell me, General, mid-April

22     1993, did the HVO in this area, the area that you were in -- could it

23     have launched an attack against the BH Army, for example, in the

24     direction of Zenica, with the aim of taking control of Zenica, or in a

25     direction which would go towards the south-east, or in any other

Page 47547

 1     direction, for that matter?  Was the HVO capable of engaging in attack?

 2        A.   I can say professionally that it was not capable of launching

 3     attacks, except diversions, sabotage, smaller operations.

 4        Q.   General, would you place your signature on that map with today's

 5     date, and then I'd like to ask the usher -- or, rather, I'd like to ask

 6     the Court for an IC number for this map.  Thank you.

 7        A.   [Marks].

 8             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Madam Usher

 9     [as interpreted].

10             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honour, the document just marked by the

11     witness shall be given Exhibit IC01139.  Thank you, Your Honours.

12             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

13        Q.   General, now look at your screen, and the documents will come up

14     there, the first of which is 2D288.  Yes.  2D288 is an evaluation by the

15     chief of security of the Supreme Command Staff of the Army of Bosnia and

16     Herzegovina - his name is Fikret Muslimovic - dated the 16th of May,

17     1993.  And he says that it is realistic to expect further tense relations

18     and an all-out military confrontation between the HVO and the BH Army.

19     Now, you knew this man, Fikret Muslimovic.  You've already told us that;

20     is that right, General?

21        A.   Yes.  I'd like to mention that this is their Supreme Command.

22        Q.   Yes.  Now, tell us, General, on the side of the HVO, were there

23     also assessments made that there would be an all-out military

24     confrontation, and was the HVO preparing for such an eventuality, an

25     all-out confrontation?

Page 47548

 1        A.   There was some documents and preparations for defence against a

 2     military confrontation.

 3        Q.   Okay.  Now let's look at the next document, which is 4D1198, and

 4     this is an order for attack of the 303rd, a famous Zenica Brigade.  And

 5     in point 4, the commander says what he has decided.  And at the very end

 6     of item 4, it says:

 7             "For further advancement towards the communication line and road

 8     running from Busovaca to Vitez."

 9             Now, tell us, General, does this order mean that in this area,

10     the Lasva River Valley, units were coming in from Zenica as well?

11        A.   Yes, quite definitely.  This is an order.  Now, when you ask

12     whether there were any HVO preparations, well, you had to prepare for the

13     defence, that's one thing, and this is an order for combat.

14        Q.   This is an order for attack from the BH Army.

15             Let's look at the next document, which is 4D1518, which is a

16     combat report of the 7th Muslim Brigade, in which it says that the unit

17     was sent in the direction of Ilmice [phoen], and I'm going to leave some

18     names out, but the final destination is Ahmici.  Tell us, please,

19     General, did you know that in the fighting in and around Ahmici, the

20     7th Muslim Brigade took part?

21        A.   Yes.

22        Q.   Now let's look at the next document, which is 4D1516.  Once

23     again, the 7th Muslim Brigade, and it says that a unit of that brigade

24     carried out its assignment to cleanse Sik [phoen] and Gola Kosa, and that

25     it was ready to take control of the village of Ahmici.  Tell us, please,

Page 47549

 1     General, during those days was there fighting around Ahmici?

 2        A.   Not only around Ahmici, but the broader area around Ahmici.  The

 3     BH Army took control of the dominant features and elevations in the

 4     hinterland at the back of Ahmici.

 5        Q.   Now let's look at document 4D1514.  Once again, the 7th Muslim

 6     Brigade.  The date is the 18th of April, 1993, and I'm interested in item

 7     1.1, where it says that part of the 7th Muslim Brigade was engaged in

 8     fighting in the region of Ahmici village jointly with the BH Army and the

 9     local population.  Tell us, please, General, to the best of your

10     knowledge, the local population who were Muslims, did they help the 7th

11     Muslim Brigade and the BH Army in the fighting against the HVO?

12        A.   Well, you say "the local population."  It means soldiers who

13     weren't up at the front-line, who were at home, but they were still

14     soldiers in the sense of having weapons and commanders and so on, because

15     the make-up of the unit was of a rural composition.  So that's what that

16     means.  And when he says, I have cleansed Golo Brdo, that means that

17     there were HVO soldiers up there and he cleansed the area of them.

18        Q.   Very well.  Let's look at 4D1513 now, the next document.  This is

19     also --

20             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, the lawyer asked a

21     question saying that there was an action by the BH Army and the local

22     population, and you, you say that in your view, the local population,

23     they were actually soldiers.  But could there be no other possibility?

24     I'm thinking of civilians who happened to be there, defending as a

25     village defends, taking it in turns with rifles, hunting rifles, or

Page 47550

 1     sticks, or God knows what, and who co-operate with the BH Army so that

 2     when there is a conflict or a clash, they take part in it, they're

 3     involved.  Or is that not possible, according to you?  Could they only be

 4     soldiers on leave, or having a rest, or being at home, who have their own

 5     weapons and will then join the BH Army?  Could you be more specific?

 6             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In mixed-population villages which

 7     had previously been inhabited by both Muslims and Croats, refugees

 8     reached those villages and they were accommodated at those villages.  So

 9     we have an HVO unit in the village together with a TO unit of that

10     village.  Your notion of civilians and whether they could have been in

11     that area, whether there were men who were not soldiers in that area of

12     the Lasva River Valley, there were no men who were not soldiers.  They

13     had uniforms and rifles from the age of 18 until a ripe old age.  So this

14     formulation, incorporation, and with the support and assistance of the

15     local population, this denotes a platoon, or a company, or even a larger

16     unit being accommodated at that village, and this does not include people

17     with hunting rifles, or pitchforks, or, you know, God knows what.

18             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.  You know, we have

19     seen a lot of documents, and we know that the HVO or the BH Army were

20     initially created from the TO and then from volunteers who came, because

21     there was no mobilisation, as is known, or draft, as is known in some

22     countries.  And when you have such a system, it may happen that there are

23     civilians.  Take a man who's 22.  He doesn't want to be a volunteer, he

24     doesn't want to go and fight.  He was not asked to join the TO, or the

25     BH Army, or the HVO.  He's just sitting quietly at home, minding his

Page 47551

 1     cattle.  But he's also a hunter, so he happens to have a hunting rifle.

 2     But he's a civilian.  He may have a jacket, but he's a civilian.  He

 3     doesn't have his military booklet.  And so suddenly he's been asked to

 4     help defend the village, so together with other people he goes to

 5     trenches, if there are any, in order to defend and make sure that the

 6     village is not attacked, as part of the HVO -- or in the HVO or the

 7     BH Army, but he's still not a serviceman.  And when there is an attack,

 8     he takes his rifle and fires the rifle.  Have you come across such

 9     situations?

10             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do not exclude the possibility of

11     an exception, but it would be a strict exception.  A man of 22 was either

12     away or he was a soldier assigned to a unit.  There were such people in

13     Vienna or in The Hague, abroad, but for them to be in that village and

14     not to perform a defence function, that was impossible.

15             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] There is another case or

16     situation we've come across.  We saw that there were hundreds of

17     thousands of refugees going from towns to villages, et cetera.  I have in

18     mind the refugees from Bugojno.  And there's all sorts of people among

19     the refugees; civilian populations, soldiers.  They're all mingled

20     together.  And refugees arrive in a village.  Are they civilians, are

21     they military, we don't know.  It's total anarchy that prevails.

22             Let us suppose there is an attack against those, quote/unquote

23     "civilians," and if there are civilians among these people, have you come

24     across a situation in which civilians may turn into fighters because

25     they're given rifles, weapons to defend themselves?

Page 47552

 1             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, they are fighters.  There is

 2     this film "Lost in Translation," and when it comes to terms of "soldier,"

 3     "fighter," "civilian," we cannot find our bearings, as far as my

 4     impression is concerned.  Well, there could be exceptions, but I'm

 5     talking about the Lasva River Valley.  And in Vitez, we forced those who

 6     had decisions by the JNA that they were unfit for the army, but we forced

 7     them into the trenches because it was a fight for survival.  Otherwise,

 8     we could not have survived.

 9             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As I understand it, in your

10     view there were no civilians, as a matter of fact, apart from women and

11     children.  Any man, maybe except very old men, any man could be a

12     soldier; is that right?

13             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.

14             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

15        Q.   General, please tell us, could women have been soldiers or have a

16     defence function?

17        A.   Yes, perform a defence function.  But when it comes to my part of

18     the world, men are supposed to fight and defend their wars.  A certain

19     percentage of women in our units, but these are younger women, without

20     children.

21             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, let us return to the

22     footage.

23             I remember a woman who was present at that meeting headed by the

24     Spaniard, together with General Petkovic and General Halilovic.  In the

25     background, I think I saw a woman standing.  Is that right?  Or she might

Page 47553

 1     have been a long-haired man.  I don't know, but I thought it was a woman.

 2     Do you remember that there were, in the BH Army or in the HVO, women

 3     also?

 4             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.

 5             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.

 6             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

 7        Q.   General, what awaits us is a more voluminous document from this

 8     set.  I'm speaking about all the documents until the penultimate in this

 9     section.  It's 4D1106.  General, please try to find that document.

10        A.   Which document?

11        Q.   4D1106.  If I may ask Madam Usher to assist.

12             May I refresh your memory, when I ask that this goes for an

13     Enver Hadzihasanovic document, dated October 1993, whereby he reports on

14     the number of men and the equipment in possession of the 3rd Corps.  On

15     page 3 of that document, Enver Hadzihasanovic sums up the number of men

16     in his corps.

17             General, please take a look at your screen, and there he says

18     that he had 51.735 soldiers of the 3rd Corps.  Please tell us, what is

19     the number of members of the HVO in the Lasva River Valley at the same

20     time?

21        A.   Some 8.000 people.

22        Q.   Could you please tell us the ratio of men between the HVO and the

23     BiH Army in the area that you worked in?

24        A.   Well, part of that corps worked in the direction of Kiseljak, but

25     at least two-thirds of the 51.000 were focusing their attention on the

Page 47554

 1     Lasva River Valley.

 2        Q.   Please tell us, General, was there any possibility for you to

 3     receive assistance by HVO units from any direction?

 4        A.   Well, not even a bird could reach us in October 1993.

 5        Q.   Fine.  On the next page, we have a list of weapons available to

 6     the 3rd Corps.  General, during the proofing session you added up all the

 7     howitzers, mortars, and anti-aircraft cannons, anti-aircraft

 8     machine-guns, et cetera, so could you please sum it up for us?  At that

 9     moment, did the HVO possess better equipment or more weapons, and what

10     was the ratio of fire-power between the two sides?

11        A.   Apart from personal side-arms -- that would be roughly that

12     ratio.  As far as heavier weapons are concerned, the truth was not

13     reflected in those tables because tables are used to distribute weapons

14     among corps.  Most probably some things were missing; for instance, 150

15     pieces of heavy artillery, or there were 50 PAT, or anti-aircraft

16     machine-guns, but we would be wasting time if we were adding up.

17        Q.   Let's not waste time.  But what was the ratio of their weapons to

18     the HVO's weapons?

19        A.   It was 2:1, even higher than 2:1.

20        Q.   Thank you.

21        A.   But it's not just the artillery, it's the question also of

22     ordnance.  We were cut off for 10 months, and we could not bring in

23     reinforcements or bring in supplies.

24        Q.   You mean your problems in ordnance supplies?

25        A.   Yes.

Page 47555

 1        Q.   Let's take a look at 4D1200.  This is an UNPROFOR information

 2     about the Mujahedin in Central Bosnia.

 3             General, do you recall this document?  Under item 2, let me jog

 4     your memory, it is stated there that the Mujahedin are Muslim

 5     fundamentalists, followers of Jihad or holy war, and that the majority of

 6     those Mujahedin are foreign nationals, but there are also locals there.

 7     And it states that both strands fight within the ranks of the 7th Muslim

 8     Brigade, that this is a unit of fundamentalists.  It is further on stated

 9     that there are other fundamentalist organisations who are not Mujahedin.

10     They group Muslims from abroad and those from Krajina and Banja Luka.

11     They are assault brigades.

12             Under item 7, there is a reference to the 7th Muslim Brigade,

13     which is responsible to the 3rd Corps, but is commanded by the

14     Supreme Command; in other words, Delic, by Delic.

15             So let's not read through this whole document, but please tell us

16     whether what I've just read corresponds to your knowledge about the

17     Mujahedin, or would you have any corrections?

18        A.   Well, I know everything about the Mujahedin.  Is this a

19     Hadzihasanovic document?

20        Q.   No, it's an UNPROFOR document.

21        A.   Well, they had the same level of knowledge about them as I did.

22     Without denying the Muslims the right to organise themselves as best they

23     could, I must tell you that the arrival of the Mujahedin was an assault

24     not only on the Croats, but on the Muslims as well, in terms of

25     civilisation, in terms of them imposing their world-view, imposing rules

Page 47556

 1     that girls should get married at the age of 12 or 13, then introduction

 2     of "nikab," which had not been seen for 50, 60 years before that.  Then

 3     they introduced banners, for instance, a black banner with Arab

 4     scripture on it in Zenica.  And El Mujahid was one of the bravest units

 5     that Alagic commanded, because when we were capturing Kupres jointly in

 6     1994, he told me, I will capture feature 1800.  I told him, No, you won't

 7     be able to capture that.  He said, Well, you know that the only fighters

 8     who could take that feature are the Mujahedin.

 9             So the elements of the 7th Muslim Brigade, in other words, the

10     Mujahedin who were different from other units, that's something which I

11     felt on my own skin.  They assaulted Totic in Zenica.  They murdered four

12     of his escort party, and he arrested them.  And they released him only

13     when we managed to find eight Mujahedin to exchange them for him.  So

14     they had complete disregard for their own personnel.

15        Q.   Please tell us, General --

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] This is going to be your last

17     question.  Your time is up.

18             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Okay, you can reflect, because I put another

19     question in the meantime.  But I put it to you, Ms. Alaburic.

20             On line 9 of page 70, you have said it is an UNPROFOR document.

21     I read, on top, on the right-hand side, within the square "From HQ, BH

22     Command, Kiseljak."  How does that go together?

23             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do not have the

24     English version of this document, but this is quite clear.  UNPROFOR had

25     its main core headquarters for Bosnia-Herzegovina at Kiseljak, and the

Page 47557

 1     seat of the UNPROFOR for the whole of the Balkans was in Zagreb.  So this

 2     is a report from Kiseljak to Zagreb.

 3             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  And the UNPROFOR in Kiseljak would call itself

 4     "HQ, BH Command"?  That's what I have in English.

 5             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I cannot tell you how

 6     they labelled themselves, but we've seen reams of documents and we know

 7     it for a fact that the UNPROFOR's headquarters for Bosnia-Herzegovina was

 8     located at Kiseljak.

 9             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Maybe if I may try an explanation.

10             In the original -- no, in the translation, we have the word "Za

11     BiH," and that might mean "with the BiH."  It would then be the UNPROFOR

12     Command located with BiH.

13             JUDGE PRANDLER:  If I may.

14             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  Please, dear colleague.

15             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] No, no, Your Honour, it's clearly

16     stated it's from --

17             JUDGE PRANDLER:  I'm sorry.

18             MS. ALABURIC:  Excuse me.

19             JUDGE PRANDLER:  I'm sorry, Ms. Alaburic, for interrupting you.

20             I would like to help both of you.  It is a UN document, and if

21     you take the left-hand second section, there you see that 2 UNPROFOR

22     liaison headquarter team, headquarters Vicenza, Italy, and then

23     afterwards "in full headquarters, UNPROFOR, Zagreb, headquarters,

24     BritBat."  And on the other side, the right side, you will see "from

25     Headquarters BH Command, Kiseljak," which means that the BritBat Command

Page 47558

 1     called itself "Headquarters, BH, Kiseljak."  So I believe that it is,

 2     anyway, a UN -- I mean -- I said "UN," but UNPROFOR, but on the other

 3     hand, British, in a way, paper, which was sent, and they have -- in

 4     paragraph 2, they have explained their views as far as the Mujahedin are

 5     concerned, about the two parts of it, et cetera, it belongs to the

 6     subject material, as such.  But the document is really in value at least

 7     valid, and it is an UNPROFOR document.  Thank you.

 8             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

 9             Your Honour Trechsel, this mark "BH," does it not mean "Army of

10     Bosnia-Herzegovina"?  This is a command for Bosnia-Herzegovina in

11     Kiseljak, and it pertains to UNPROFOR.

12        Q.   General, where was the UNPROFOR headquarters in

13     Bosnia-Herzegovina?

14        A.   For UNPROFOR, at Kiseljak.  And for the British Battalion, in

15     Vitez.

16        Q.   Thank you very much.  I believe that we've clarified this point.

17             General, I have five minutes or less --

18             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation]  Your time is up.  Now is the

19     time for your last question, but your time is up.

20             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, just one document and

21     one question.

22             4D567, 4D567.  You will see it on your screen.  This is a

23     schematic of Central Bosnia, with the situation in November 1993.  It is

24     marked on this document that by that moment, BiH Army units had captured

25     the following towns:  Fojnica, 6.000 Croats fled; Bugojno, 15.000

Page 47559

 1     Croatians fled; Novi Travnik, 3.000 Croatians fled; Travnik, 25.000

 2     Croats fled; the area south of Zenica, 12.000 Croats fled; Kakanj, 15.000

 3     Croatians fled; and Vares, 9.000 Croats fled.

 4        Q.   My question to you, General:  Were those Croats expelled from

 5     that area?  Did they flee because of a justifiable reason, or,

 6     alternatively, did they just leave that territory for no reason at all to

 7     resettle in Herzegovina or in another part of the world?

 8        A.   The figures are really impressive.  It is difficult to imagine

 9     that somebody would leave their homes without pressure, without crimes

10     being committed nearby, without realisation that they no longer can

11     survive there and maintain their presence, without the perspective that

12     things may improve, knowing the ratio of power and what had gone on

13     before, without their own state, because what was supposed to be the

14     successor to Yugoslavia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, at that point boiled down

15     to brute force and nothing else, so people had to leave their homes to go

16     who knows where.  This was the situation of both the Croats and the

17     Muslims, and Serbs elsewhere, but nobody leaves their home of their own

18     volition, or following a political call, or anything like that.  You do

19     not leave your home if your life is not threatened.

20             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, General.

21             Your Honours, my time is up.  Thank you.

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I have a follow-up

23     question on the Mujahedin.

24             Can you tell us in what respect the presence of these foreigners

25     in the 7th Brigade may have played a part in the clashes between the HVO

Page 47560

 1     and the BH Army?  And let me fine-tune my question.  If the Mujahedin had

 2     not been present, would there have been as many clashes as that?

 3             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I couldn't claim anything like

 4     that, and I don't blame only the Mujahedins.  They did not wage a policy

 5     in Bosnia-Herzegovina, or, rather, they weren't the only ones who --

 6     well, let me put it this way:  I don't think we should tie all evil to

 7     their name.  They just brought in a psychological change.  Their numbers

 8     could not have been held responsible for the things that were ascribed to

 9     them.  They were a good unit, in the sense of having carrying out

10     commanders' orders, and later on they were concentrated in the

11     El Mujahid.  They were in the 7th Muslim Brigade, of course.  Now, the

12     7th Muslim Brigade did not as act as a whole.

13             When you say "the 7th Muslim Brigade," you mean the whole

14     brigade, but they acted in groups on a broad area.  So one brigade would

15     appear in Bugojno, Travnik, Dusina, Kiseljak, all over the place.  So it

16     wasn't one unit.  Organisationally and in terms of logistics, it was in

17     one place, specifically in Zenica, and later on I don't know whether it

18     changed places, but it was a unit from which the necessary structure and

19     resources were taken to help other people to realise their goals.

20             MS. ALABURIC:  [No interpretation]

21             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Ms. Alaburic, what's the

22     matter?  What did you say?

23             MS. ALABURIC:  I just wanted to ask what happened to

24     Judge Trechsel because we didn't see your head and we thought that

25     something happened.  I'm sorry.

Page 47561

 1             JUDGE TRECHSEL:  I'm still alive, though it may not sound it.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, in your view, talking

 3     of the Mujahedin, were they known within the HVO, within the military

 4     wing of the HVO?  Were they spoken about in areas where there were

 5     soldiers?  Did they instill fear as to their image and what they may have

 6     done?  Did they have any impact on the civilian population so that the

 7     mere mention of them being there may cause people to flee?  Did they have

 8     this kind of strength or force of psychological impact which may have led

 9     HVO units to behave in a specific way and may have led the civilians to

10     be caught by fear, so that even if crimes were ascribed to Mujahedins,

11     this would cause panic?

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The activities of the Mujahedin and

13     their combat -- the value of their combat and fighting ability, but

14     psychologically, too, this had an effect on the enemy; in this case, the

15     HVO.  Now, the knowledge that heads were rolling, heads were being cut

16     off in certain places, and I knew the names of some of those people,

17     these rituals, moving around the territory when we weren't in conflict,

18     displaying their manner of dress, their shouts to battle, and so on, the

19     "Allahu Akbar" cries, "Allah is great," and all the other slogans - I

20     don't want to show you what these cries are like - but, anyway, it all

21     had a morale effect on the population and on the HVO soldiers.

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Now, this influence on the

23     population and on the morale of soldiers, do you think that it could lead

24     soldiers to behave abnormally, in a way that they would not have behaved

25     if they had been confronted with traditional soldiers, but here these

Page 47562

 1     Mujahedin were not traditional soldiers?

 2             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, certainly.  In relation

 3     to the number of others, they were certainly -- they certainly brought

 4     something new; combat values, the BH Army.  They were a sort of catalyst.

 5             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I'd like to react with respect to

 6     the translation.

 7             The witness said that they were yeast, that the literal word is

 8     "yeast."

 9             THE INTERPRETER:  The interpreter notes that she said "catalyst."

10             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Could the witness explain what he

11     meant by that?

12             Witness, what did you mean when you said -- when you used the

13     word?

14             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, let me put it this way:  Soup

15     with salt and soup without salt.  So it was this addition of salt.  It

16     was this additive that produced a new product, gave a new value.

17             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As a former senior officer in

18     the JNA, on the opposite side, or on the friendly side - I don't know how

19     you want to put it - I mean within the BH Army, there were former

20     colleagues of yours who were with you in the JNA.  You even had very good

21     relations with some of them.  You mentioned the late Alagic, for example.

22     So when you were talking with them, did they discuss the problem of the

23     Mujahedins?

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, they didn't talk to me about

25     them, because militarily speaking, they weren't a problem to them.  But I

Page 47563

 1     knew that with the population, the Muslim population, the locals,

 2     autoctonos population, that they were a problem to them because of their

 3     conduct and this imposition by force of Sharia Law or whatever else

 4     linked to their daily lives.  And I've already mentioned marriages to

 5     under-age girls, to young girls, and that was a novelty in those areas.

 6     And then women who were wearing black, that wasn't the custom beforehand.

 7     So this was something that the local Muslims didn't agree with and

 8     there's no dilemma there.  It was something new that was imposed.

 9             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We saw the constitutional text

10     regarding the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, where, in a very explicit

11     fashion, there is mention of the three constitutive nations and mention

12     of the religions, of the three religions; Catholics, Orthodox, and

13     Muslims.  I would like to know whether these Mujahedins were disturbing

14     this constitutional balance that had been struck.

15             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, they didn't upset the

16     constitutional balance by their numbers, but they introduced something

17     new which had not -- that the local population had not seen the likes of

18     anything like that, because the Bosnian area was a European area, just

19     like any other -- or Yugoslav area, and suddenly we had the advent of

20     something that was not commensurate to the civilisation that the normal

21     people there had known up until then.  And this was imposed by force,

22     where they were able to impose it.  In Han Bila, for example, or in the

23     area where they were first accommodated - it's a valley separate from the

24     Lasva River Valley - well, the situation there was flagrant, and in the

25     town of Travnik as well.  I had never seen a woman wearing - what's it

Page 47564

 1     called? - completely black clothes.  And not one; there were many of them

 2     like that.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Praljak and his Defence

 4     team mentioned on several occasions the "Islamic Declaration," written by

 5     Alija Izetbegovic.  They told us, in so many words, that Izetbegovic

 6     wanted to Islamise the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.  What's your take

 7     on this?

 8             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] On the 11th of April - it was

 9     Easter 1993 - my people's flags were hoisted.  And previously for Bajram,

10     the whole of Travnik was green.  So this Islamisation was very sudden, at

11     least in the external marks and signs of it.  It engulfed a large area.

12     And Alija's declaration, dating back to the 1970s, unless I'm mistaken,

13     for which he was sentenced to a term in prison by the system of the day,

14     as far as I remember, but the fact remains that suddenly, in the broad

15     masses of the population, something was changing, something had happened

16     which had never happened before.  So I can't die under a green flag,

17     whereas it would have been an honour for me to have laid down my life

18     under the tricolour flag.

19             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

20             We have 10 minutes before the end of this hearing.  Let me ask

21     the Defence teams.  They have two hours altogether.  I would like to know

22     who wants to take the floor first.

23             Mr. Karnavas?

24             MR. KARNAVAS:  Good afternoon, or good evening, I should say,

25     Mr. President and Your Honours, to everyone in and around the courtroom.

Page 47565

 1             We will not be cross-examining the gentleman, but we do wish to

 2     thank him for coming here to give his evidence.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  We'll skip -- no,

 4     we'll not skip 2D.

 5             Ms. Nozica, 2D.

 6             MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours.

 7             We are going to cross-examine the witness, but I always insist

 8     upon our internal order, and by that order I'm third in line.  We do

 9     intend to examine the witness.  We know the amount of time we have at our

10     disposal, and I think we're going to need around 30 minutes for our

11     cross-examination.  And if we exceed that time, then we'll ask to use our

12     own time.  But as far as I know, other Defence teams will be

13     cross-examining this witness as well, so it will be a good idea for us to

14     hear everyone.  Thank you.

15             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine.  2D, 30 minutes.

16             What about 3D, Mr. Kovacic?

17             MS. PINTER: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours.

18             The Defence of General Praljak will be cross-examining this

19     witness, and we will need half an hour.  We think that we'll be able to

20     conclude the cross-examination within that time.  However, if there will

21     be no cross-examination by other Defence teams, then we would, of course,

22     like to use that additional time.  We'd welcome it.

23             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

24             For Mr. Coric, 5D?

25             MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your

Page 47566

 1     Honours.

 2             For the time being, we don't intend to cross-examine.  However,

 3     based on experience, when new topics are broached, I would like to

 4     reserve the right to cross-examine within the two hours that have been

 5     allocated to the various Defence teams.  Thank you.

 6             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] For Mr. Pusic.

 7             MR. IBRISIMOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.

 8             We probably won't be cross-examining this witness.  And as we are

 9     reaching the end of today's day, we'll make the final decision tomorrow

10     morning.

11             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I don't think we should start

12     now.  We only have a few minutes left.

13             We will start tomorrow afternoon.  We'll start with the two

14     Defence teams who said they would take the floor, 2D and 3D.  And then

15     Mr. Scott will start, so he has to be ready with his binders for his own

16     cross-examination.

17             I wish you all a pleasant evening, and we will meet tomorrow at

18     2.15.

19                           [The witness stands down]

20                           --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.53 p.m.,

21                           to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 2nd day of

22                           December, 2009, at 2.15 p.m.