Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 265

1 Monday, 4 October 2004

2 [Status Conference]

3 [Open session]

4 --- Upon commencing at 10.00 a.m.

5 [The accused entered court]

6 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: So good morning, everybody. Mr. Registrar, could

8 you call the case, please.

9 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, good morning. Case number

10 IT-03-67-PT, the Prosecutor versus Vojislav Seselj.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Seselj, can you follow the proceedings in a

12 language that you can understand?

13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] For the time being, yes.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Appearances. Prosecution.

15 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Good morning, Your Honour. For the

16 Prosecution it's Daniel Saxon. My name is Hildegard Uertz-Retzlaff, and

17 we are accompanied by case manager Ana Vrljic.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you and good morning to you all. Standby

19 counsel, good morning to you.

20 MR. VAN DER SPOEL: Good morning, Your Honour. Tjarda van der

21 Spoel, standby counsel.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you and good morning to you.

23 So I will start with the usual formality, explaining the purpose

24 of reasons for Status Conferences such as this one. The last Status

25 Conference was held on the 14th of June. The Trial Chamber is required,

Page 266

1 under Rule 65 bis, to hold a Status Conference every 120 days to organise

2 exchanges between the parties, to ensure expeditious preparation for

3 trial, and to allow the accused to raise issues in relation to his mental

4 or physical condition.

5 As I did on previous occasions, I'm just making it clear from the

6 very outset of the Status Conference that this is a Status Conference, and

7 both parties have a duty to adhere strictly to the purpose of the Status

8 Conference. I do not have any intention to allow either of you to go

9 beyond these limits as established in Rule 65 bis, and I will not hesitate

10 to take whatever actions are necessary at any given moment if the

11 proceedings are abused of or an attempt to derail them is there.

12 I will start with the agenda proper, and of course the matter

13 which is of the utmost importance at this stage and which is pertinent to

14 every Status Conference is the ongoing process of disclosure. As I will

15 explain very shortly, there are two main problems that have arisen and

16 continue to arise, and the time has come to decide on these issues.

17 As introduction, however, let me start by saying that in this

18 ongoing process of disclosure, the Prosecution has filed four reports.

19 The first one was filed on the 23rd of July of 2003. The second was filed

20 on the 12th of February of 2004. So when we had the last Status

21 Conference on the 14th of June, there were only two such reports

22 available. Since then, another two reports have been filed. The third

23 report concerning disclosure, which is partly confidential, was filed on

24 the 13th of July, 2004. And very recently, a few days ago, on the last

25 day of September, the 30th of September, the Prosecution filed its fourth

Page 267

1 report concerning disclosure.

2 Because of the date, the proximity of the date of the filing of

3 this fourth report, I want to make sure that the accused has received a

4 copy of it.

5 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I did receive the fourth report of

7 the Prosecution.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Okay. I thank you, Mr. Seselj.

9 And following that, I just want to confirm the following, please,

10 although I -- don't take it that I am doubting your words in -- as

11 indicated in the fourth report, but I want to make sure that the following

12 information is correct: I am informed that you filed or you attempted to

13 file 81 witness statements in CD-ROM format, of which 23 are in Serbian

14 language and that mention the accused's name. This you tried to do on the

15 5th of July, 2004, and the CD-ROM was rejected by the accused.

16 It is your submission, I take it, that you consider your

17 obligation under Rule 66(B) fulfilled. Then you attempted to file -- to

18 deliver to the accused 70 statements in CD-ROM format of which 32 were in

19 the Serbian language -- are in the Serbian language and mention the

20 accused's name. You tried to hand these on the 20th of July, 2004. This

21 is information, both this and the previous one, the disclosure of which

22 arises under Rule 66(B). Again, once more you informed this Trial Chamber

23 that the accused rejected the CD-ROM and that you consider your

24 obligations under Rule 66(B) fulfilled.

25 Then we have 19 witness statements in hard copy that mention the

Page 268

1 accused's name. Again, this was disclosed under Rule 66(B) on the 21st of

2 July, 2004. These have been handed over to the Trial Chamber for -- to be

3 redacted prior to being disclosed by -- to the accused. This matter is

4 pending before the Trial Chamber, and we are going through them to see if

5 they need to be redacted and to what extent.

6 Then there is a potential -- what you describe as potential Rule

7 68, in other words, exculpatory or mitigatory material in hard copy in

8 English and in Serbian related to the Croatian part of the case. This you

9 disclosed on the 19th of August 2004. According to the information that

10 you give me, this material was accepted by the accused.

11 Then there is potential Rule 68 material in seven CD-ROMs relating

12 to what you describe as "opposing forces." This you attempted to disclose

13 on the 3rd of September, 2004. You informed me that the accused rejected

14 these CD-ROMs and that you consider your obligation under Rule 68

15 fulfilled.

16 Finally, also I suppose arising or in the wake of the decision of

17 the Appeals Chamber to revoke our decision, previous decision or

18 interlocutory decree relating to the Vojvodina element in the indictment,

19 on the 3rd of September you disclosed a hard copy of analysis of Vojvodina

20 population census in Serbian. This was on the 3rd of September. You

21 informed me that the accused accepted the material.

22 Now, going through all the documentation of the case and previous

23 reports, I think there are two issues that have now come to a head and

24 that need to be addressed thoroughly by you and the Trial Chamber and

25 decided upon before we can even proceed any further. As you know, one of

Page 269

1 the basic reasons of the pre-trial stage is precisely the disclosure

2 process that is imposed by our system, by our Rules, and it would be a big

3 mistake for this Trial Chamber to ignore the fact that there are

4 difficulties in this disclosure process, difficulties that have to be

5 addressed.

6 The first difficulty is the fact that the accused continues to

7 refuse anything which is not in hard copy, that is, anything that is in

8 electronic format. The problem arises, insofar -- in the light of the

9 following two facts: First, that he rejects this material when it is

10 handed to him in CD-ROM format or in any other electronic format while you

11 consider your obligation under whichever Rule is applicable to have been

12 fulfilled. This matter needs to be cleared up, because if it is

13 fulfilled, then we have to move a step forward and decide how best to

14 ensure that we can proceed forward preparing for the trial. If your

15 obligations cannot be considered to be fulfilled, then we also have to

16 find a remedy to ensure that they are fulfilled. So this is the first

17 issue that has to be decided.

18 The second issue relates only to basically Rule 68 disclosure in

19 that while the accused pretends that even in the case of Rule 68,

20 disclosures -- the material disclosed ought to be disclosed in his own

21 language or a language that he understands. Although you have been

22 forthcoming and cooperative, I must say, you still maintain that under the

23 Rules you do not have an obligation to disclose Rule 68, to translate Rule

24 68 material into the accused's language if it is not in that language now.

25 I think this is the second point that needs to be decided, because

Page 270

1 obviously on the outcome of such decision depends the other decision,

2 whether you are fulfilling your obligations of disclosure under the Rules

3 or not.

4 It's important that these two points be decided at the earliest

5 possible time. I have given this matter a lot of thought, and I think --

6 I think we cannot really pretend to proceed efficiently with the pre-trial

7 stage until and unless these matters are decided.

8 Since these issues are, of course, vital, I am not going to

9 suggest that together with the other two Judges composing this Trial

10 Chamber we will proceed to our decision without giving you an opportunity

11 to be heard.

12 The situation, as I see it, is as follows: The accused has made

13 his position very clear. He has stated, "You cannot force me to accept

14 anything which is not in the hard copy, and you shouldn't be disclosing to

15 me Rule 68 material in a language which is not my own language."

16 I am going to give the accused the option to go first if he wants

17 to go first, not today orally because this is something that needs to be

18 addressed in writing and thoroughly, but I will ask the accused whether he

19 would like to file submissions in writing on this matter or whether he

20 wants to rest it as it is and as I have explained it to the Prosecution,

21 and then economise on time and allow you or give you the opportunity to

22 explain to this Tribunal how, notwithstanding the fact that the accused is

23 rejecting these disclosures, you would consider yourself to have fulfilled

24 your obligations under the Rules.

25 Mr. Seselj, would you like to be given the opportunity to file

Page 271

1 written submissions on these two matters that are interrelated and both --

2 both relate to disclosure or your rights to disclosure under the Rules, or

3 do you prefer to leave it at that and pass on the bucket to the

4 Prosecution to file written submissions arising out of your objections and

5 your refusal to accept these documents? If you want time to think, I will

6 give you time to think.

7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Agius, we have a different

8 problem here. At the last Status Conference you asked me to submit to you

9 in writing all my objections to these proceedings and to inform you about

10 the problems that I face in relation to preparing my defence. I did that

11 on ten handwritten pages, densely written, as part of submission 37. I

12 have the impression that you have not read this at all. Hans Holthuis,

13 the Registrar of the Tribunal, he deceived you in relation to the content

14 of this. Allow me to finish.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: I am not going to allow you to finish because this

16 Status Conference is not meant for speeches. This Status Conference is

17 dealing with legal matters. I want to know from you a simple yes or no.

18 This is a legal matter and has got nothing to do with the pages that you

19 submitted earlier which contain no proper and thoroughly legal

20 submissions. I'm asking you whether you want to avail yourself of the

21 facility that I am offering you to submit submissions in writing, legal

22 submissions, on whether there is anything at law which comforts your

23 pretended right to refuse the matters or the material that the Prosecution

24 is trying to disclose to you in electronic format and also in addition to

25 whether the pretended right to have material translated or interpreted,

Page 272

1 translated into your own language arises also under Rule 68 or not. If

2 you don't want to avail yourself of that opportunity, tell me no. If you

3 want to avail yourself of that opportunity, tell me yes. But I only want

4 an answer yes or no from you, no speeches. Otherwise, I'll cut you off.

5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I will never declare myself to you

6 in terms of yes or no. Do not put questions like that to me because they

7 have nothing to do with law or the science and practice of law.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So I am going to decide this matter here and

9 now.

10 Following the explanation that the Pre-Trial Judge made earlier

11 on, the accused is being given three weeks within which, if he so wishes,

12 he may submit, within the parameters of the Rules and directives, written

13 submissions covering the legal issues involved in the disclosure in

14 electronic format and translations of documents of material disclosed

15 under Rule 68.

16 The Prosecution will have a further three weeks within which to

17 respond and present their case, particularly explaining why, according to

18 them, their obligations of disclosure under Rule -- under the applicable

19 Rules, are being fulfilled. The Trial Chamber then will collegially

20 decide these issues, these two issues.

21 Next item is something that goes beyond. It's still related to

22 disclosure but goes beyond what we have just discussed, and it's just the

23 Trial Chamber and the Pre-Trial Judge giving information to the parties.

24 There was, as you remember, a confidentially -- a confidential motion

25 filed way back on the 23rd of April, 2004. This was Prosecution's

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Page 274

1 submission of additional information concerning protective measures for

2 vulnerable witnesses.

3 In response to the Trial Chamber's decision of the 11th February,

4 2004, which granted the Prosecution's request for the issuance of a

5 non-disclosure order under Rule 53(A) of some witness statements that had

6 to be disclosed under Rule 66(A)(ii) in which decision we ordered the

7 Prosecution to provide more information to enable the Trial Chamber to

8 determine the request for pre-trial protective measures, as I said, the

9 Prosecution filed the confidential motion on the 23rd of April, and this

10 submission provided general background information relating to the dangers

11 involved in the present case, according to the Prosecution, due to the

12 behaviour of the accused and provided more detailed information in

13 relation to specific witnesses for whom protective measures were sought.

14 At the last Status Conference, the accused stated that with

15 respect to the protective measures sought by the Prosecution, his position

16 was that the Office of the Prosecutor has no reason to assume that he

17 could disclose documents that are explicitly described as not public or

18 that he could disclose names of protected witnesses.

19 The position, I suppose, is still the same. If -- we have not

20 received any further documentation on this or any further submissions on

21 this. The Trial Chamber, or I in particular, was, during the past months,

22 involved in the drawing up of the decision in the final judgement in the

23 Brdjanin case. As soon as that case was over, I have started working on

24 this pending motion. I need to discuss it further with the other two

25 Judges to see whether it's going to be a collegial decision or whether

Page 275

1 it's going to be only my decision. We are in the final stages of such

2 discussions, and now that the Brdjanin case is over, I expect that we

3 should be able to hand down this decision within a very short time. We

4 are also doing our utmost to ensure that once it is handed down in the

5 English language, it is translated immediately in the Serbian language and

6 made available to the accused.

7 The reason why I earlier on also raised the question or the

8 urgency of the need to decide on whether disclosure is being carried out

9 according to the Rules relates also to another motion that was filed in

10 27th July, 2004, it's a notice for non-disclosure of names and other

11 identifying information. As I said the previous one, we are in a position

12 to decide now because we are at an advanced stage. This one, I have gone

13 into it, and I think at this stage we cannot proceed with even considering

14 the merits of this motion, because as it is, during the last Status

15 Conference the accused himself made a request to the Trial Chamber to

16 order the Prosecution to disclose by the 14th of August copies of all

17 Prosecution witnesses that mention the accused, and that prior to

18 disclosing any witness statement in redacted form that this be submitted

19 in toto to the Trial Chamber for approval.

20 As I tried to explain to you, I mean until I had received the

21 fourth report on disclosure by the Prosecution I had prepared to address

22 this matter, in other words, the motion of the 27th July, thoroughly in

23 the course of this Status Conference. However, since most of the

24 documents that the Prosecution tried to disclose as promised, as

25 undertaken, have been refused by the accused and now it needs to be

Page 276

1 decided whether this refusal is justified and whether the disclosure is

2 legal or not, I think this matter has to be put forward, adjourned to when

3 we are in a position to deal with it. So the discussion on this motion is

4 being adjourned till after our decision on disclosure of electronic

5 material and translations under Rule 68 -- Rule 68 disclosure is

6 definitively decided upon either by this Trial Chamber or by the Appeals

7 Chamber, as applicable.

8 I come to Rule 65 material. 65 ter, I apologise. This matter I

9 brought up during the previous Status Conference, and I think we need to

10 take stock of where we stand now, because again this is another area where

11 we need to register some progress. I also acknowledge that there are some

12 difficulties, and some of the difficulties are also related to the points

13 I mentioned earlier.

14 You will recall that at the last Status Conference the Prosecution

15 stated that it had prepared a draft of the pre-trial brief and that a

16 draft -- also of a draft witness list and draft exhibits list. It also

17 stated that it did not want to disclose these since they were not -- they

18 had not yet reached the final stage. This was almost four months ago.

19 Prosecution stated at the time that its assessment was that it had

20 63 viva voce witnesses and 40 92 bis witnesses, and currently - when I say

21 "currently," it means at the time in June, mid-June of this year - around

22 about 900 exhibits.

23 The accused, according to my records, entered a declaration that

24 his intention was to contest each of the 92 bis witnesses that you

25 intended to bring forward. I take it that he was not only -- that his

Page 277

1 requirement is that these persons, these individuals be brought forward to

2 give evidence here so that they can properly be cross-examined,

3 cross-examined by him.

4 According to the Prosecution, according to your declaration in

5 June of this year, during the last Status Conference, you anticipated also

6 that the number of exhibits would increase substantially depending if the

7 accused -- depending on whether the accused agreed or did not agreed with

8 the agreed facts which were proposed by the Prosecution.

9 You will recall that we had started brushing the question of

10 agreed facts during the last Status Conference, and I realised that the

11 accused could be heading towards a difficult situation by even being asked

12 to deal with these matters when he has a right to remain silent and also

13 not to make any statements which could possibly incriminate him, and I

14 stopped him. I'm glad that he stopped, and I am making it clear at this

15 point in time that I will not allow any further discussions during this or

16 any later Status Conference on possible agreed facts. This is a matter

17 that I am going to leave entirely up to you and in which I am not going to

18 be -- get involved any further.

19 During the last Status Conference, Madam Prosecutor and the other

20 members of the Prosecution team, you also informed me that you anticipated

21 that you would be able to file 65 ter material, that basically what I

22 mentioned earlier, the pre-trial brief, list of witnesses, list of -- and

23 exhibits list, et cetera, by the end of the year, and I urged you to try

24 and bring this date forward. Now, I honestly believe that what I

25 mentioned before in relation to the problems that we have with regard to

Page 278

1 disclosure need not interfere with your preparations and fulfilment of the

2 requirements under Rule 65 ter. I don't think the two issues ought to --

3 should be mixed, and one should not have a bearing on the other.

4 So could I ask you, Madam Prosecutor, to update the Trial Chamber

5 on, first, whether your anticipated list of 65 viva voce witnesses stands

6 or whether you have revised this list. That's number one.

7 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, the list basically stands.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Secondly, whether you are going to stick to your

9 request to bring forward 92 bis witness statements.

10 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. What is your position with regard to the

12 objection of the accused in relation to this, your request, and whether

13 you object to their being brought forward for cross-examination --

14 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, we --

15 JUDGE AGIUS: -- brought forward for cross-examination, or are you

16 going to leave this in the hands of the Trial Chamber?

17 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, we can make in relation to each

18 and every witness a specified argument whether we concede that

19 cross-examination should be allowed for this and that witness and for

20 others not. So we would make -- in our submissions, we could make for

21 each and every witness --

22 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Let me make it -- let me make it very

23 clear at this stage. When you come to this stage of fulfilling your

24 obligations under the Rule 65 -- Rule 65 ter, you still need to indicate

25 the -- all the details regarding these 40 92 bis witnesses that you

Page 279

1 propose to bring forward. The question as to whether you will be

2 authorised to bring forward these witnesses under Rule -- Rule 92 bis will

3 remain unprejudiced. We reserve the right to decide on that issue as we

4 go along. As well, obviously, questions related to the accused's right to

5 have these witnesses brought forward, in any case, for cross-examination,

6 even if the examination-in-chief is substituted by Rule 92 bis statements.

7 So all these matters will be left in abeyance pending eventual

8 determination by the Trial Chamber, but you will need to indicate all the

9 relative details in your list of witnesses. All right? Do I make it

10 clear?

11 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: We will do that.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Saving, of course, any protective measures that will

13 be put in place or will be in place between now and when you file the Rule

14 65 ter documents.

15 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, I can already say that the

16 pre-trial brief we will file this month, and the witness list we can file

17 as soon as we have the protective measures decision. The exhibit list

18 will take a little bit longer. We have not received anything in writing

19 from Mr. Seselj in relation to agreed facts.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: I said please don't raise the matter again. I think

21 last time -- I don't think this matter should be raised, at least not in

22 my presence. Not in my presence.

23 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: I only --

24 JUDGE AGIUS: I think, to be honest, at this point in time, since

25 the accused is unassisted and he has decided to defend himself, it would

Page 280

1 be making a very big mistake if he responds to you on agreed facts.

2 I made it clear to you last time, and I'm making it clear to you

3 this time: Don't respond unless you decide not to agree with me. I think

4 you would be making a big mistake if, without the proper legal advice, you

5 try to respond to the matters submitted to you for acceptance as agreed

6 facts.

7 I will not deal with this matter any further, so please don't

8 raise this matter any further. We may -- we may -- I might ask you for a

9 final update at the Pre-Trial Conference when we come to that and if I am

10 still in charge of the case, but until then, I am not going to have this

11 matter discussed again during any of the pre-trial Status Conference.

12 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, I didn't intend to discuss this

13 matter. The only thing I wanted to convey to you, that because there is

14 no agreement on anything, the witness -- the exhibits list will take

15 longer and we cannot make it in October. That is what I wanted to point

16 out to you.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. I prefer it that way rather than have the

18 accused, without proper legal assistance, be asked to answer on what he

19 agrees to and what he doesn't agree to and then find himself later on

20 faced with his acceptance of certain facts as arguments used against him.

21 And I will protect the accused because that's my duty and my

22 responsibility.

23 So -- so basically we've covered this. I would expect you, then,

24 to proceed along your statement in relation to Rule 65 ter material.

25 With regard to the pre-trial brief, this, I suppose, will be in

Page 281

1 English.

2 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, of course, Your Honour.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. And I would recommend to you that you start

4 working on the translation into B/C/S as early as possible so that it can

5 be handed to the accused without undue delay.

6 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, we -- the Prosecution has a duty

7 to file it in English and the Registrar has actually the undertaking to

8 translate it.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: What I mean to say is please liaise with the

10 Registrar to make sure there is no delay, even though I know that this is

11 not your responsibility. And Registrar is here, present -- a

12 representative of the Registrar is here present in the courtroom, and I'm

13 sure that he will refer this to the Registrar. The Trial Chamber solicits

14 the Registrar to give priority to translating the pre-trial brief into the

15 language of the accused as early as possible.

16 You may sit down.

17 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, I wanted to mention -- in

18 relation to disclosure, I wanted to update you on two points. First of

19 all, on the 30th of September, we tried to disclose another set of Rule 68

20 materials, four CD-ROMs, and it was rejected again on that same day.

21 And secondly, if you are interested, it's always a question

22 whether something needs to be translated into English, and we actually

23 have prepared and could show it to you today an interview with the accused

24 which shows that he clearly understands the English language.

25 If you want to see it now, we could do it now.

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Page 283

1 JUDGE AGIUS: What kind -- what kind -- is it a video recording

2 or --

3 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes. It's a video recording of an interview.

4 It's about two minutes and it actually shows that he can communicate in

5 English.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's see it.

7 [Videotape played]

8 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, just for the record, it's -- the

9 ERN number of this -- this video is V0005068. So for reference.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Are you tendering it in evidence or not? You don't

11 need to.

12 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: No. No. Actually, it's enough that it was

13 viewed.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Anyway, I'm not going to ask the accused to comment

15 on that because the question is not whether he understands English or not

16 at this point in time. That may become relevant later on, but the

17 question is whether he is, under the Rules, entitled to have Rule 68

18 material disclosed in a language that he understands, in his own language

19 or not. I think that is what is in issue for the time being, but of

20 course the Trial Chamber acknowledges the -- what you are trying to prove

21 by means of this video recording, namely that the accused does understand,

22 according to himself, at least, does understand some English.

23 Okay. I think I will not return to that matter again.

24 There is another issue that we -- we need to --

25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Agius.

Page 284

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Seselj.

2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I wish to say something about this.

3 I think you cannot deny me this right. I think that it is completely

4 absurd what the Prosecution is doing. I am a slightly educated man. I

5 have had some education so I have learned a little English, only enough to

6 be able to communicate with these guards of yours. But because you heard

7 me say three simple phrases in English, for you to conclude that I can

8 study legal text in that language, a substantial legal text, that is

9 something I cannot comprehend. And I do have the right to say something

10 about it, however, you keep stopping me. You don't stop the Prosecutor.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Because, Mr. Seselj, you don't need to explain all

12 this to me or to the Trial Chamber. What -- what we have seen here and

13 what you have stated, I don't think at the present moment any of this is

14 important, because as I said, it's a question of whether you have a right

15 to have Rule 68 material disclosed in your language or whether the

16 Prosecution can pretend to fulfil their obligations under Rule 68 to

17 disclose them only in the English language or whichever language they may

18 have it. So that's the question of whether you know English. How much

19 English you know is completely irrelevant for the purpose of the exercise

20 that I particularly have to embark upon. So don't worry about how much

21 English you know. You have your rights under the Statute and under the

22 Rules, and they will be respected. If the decision of the Trial Chamber

23 is that they need to be translated in your own language, they will be

24 translated in your own language.

25 Earlier on, in one of the previous Status Conferences, we

Page 285

1 discussed the accused's submission. He numbers his submissions, and this

2 is very convenient for the purpose of the Pre-Trial Chamber. I'm

3 referring to submission number 37, filed way back in July of 2004.

4 The question is -- or refers to an earlier matter that the accused

5 had raised, namely he was asking the Registrar to furnish him with all the

6 jurisprudence of the Tribunal. By "jurisprudence," he was also meaning

7 not only decisions but also parties' submissions in his own language and

8 presumably in hard copy. And the Registrar or the Deputy Registrar at the

9 time had answered his request on 11 June, that is a couple of days before

10 the last Status Conference, stating that in order to be able to comply

11 with the accused's request, the Registrar -- the Registry would have to

12 provide with thousands of documents amounting to tens of thousands of

13 pages and that this was neither practical nor reasonable. The Registrar

14 was, however, amenable and also able to accommodate a more limited and

15 focused request.

16 You recall that I had allowed a brief discussion on this issue,

17 particularly explaining two matters: One, that this is basically a matter

18 to be resolved between the accused and the Registrar and that the Trial

19 Chamber would involve itself in this issue only insofar as the rights of

20 the accused to be able to defend himself could be at stake.

21 You will recall also that we went -- I gave the accused the

22 opportunity to explain in a little bit more detail his grievance

23 particularly in relation to the disclosure of case law, of decisions of

24 this Tribunal, and you will recall that he had particular complaints with

25 regard to some decisions of this Tribunal that had not been given to him

Page 286

1 presumably at the time, and I think that was the position because they had

2 not yet been translated into B/C/S or they were still being in the process

3 of being translated into B/C/S.

4 I have, in preparation for this Status Conference, tried to check

5 what the situation is. I haven't really checked on what has been

6 disclosed because I think I can ask the Registrar to update the Trial

7 Chamber formally, formally during the Status Conference. There was one

8 problem that I discovered, actually, and that is that the Kupreskic

9 judgement, which was delivered quite some time ago, had not yet been

10 translated. I made further inquiries to see if some progress could be

11 reported on this matter. I learnt this morning that there are good news

12 also on Kupreskic, and I now call on the Deputy Registrar present in this

13 courtroom to update the Trial Chamber on what has been furnished to the

14 accused in accordance with the -- or along the lines indicated in the

15 previous Status Conference.

16 If you could update the Trial Chamber, please, the Pre-Trial

17 Chamber.

18 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, I can inform you that we delivered

19 the following translations, Serbian translations of the following

20 judgements: The judgements in the Jokic case, the judgements in the

21 Deronjic case, and the judgement in the Simic case, the judgement in the

22 Mrdja case, the judgement in the -- the appeals judgement in the Krnojelac

23 case, the judgement in the Babic case, the judgement in the Nikolic

24 case --

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Which Nikolic? Momir? Dragan?

Page 287

1 THE REGISTRAR: Dragan Nikolic. The judgement in the Mucic case,

2 the judgement in the Obrenovic case, and the judgement in the Cesic case.

3 I can tell you as well that I have here --

4 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment before you proceed any further. Did you

5 -- are you in a position to confirm that the Appeals Chamber decision

6 reversing our -- the interlocutory decree on the Vojvodina element and the

7 -- has been -- whether it has been disclosed or given to the accused in

8 his own language?

9 THE REGISTRAR: I can confirm that, Your Honours.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. And what else were you going to state?

11 THE REGISTRAR: I have here in my hands a list with all the 48

12 translations -- in B/C/S translations of judgements we have at this point

13 in time, and if -- we can deliver this list to the accused, and if he

14 needs some of these judgements, if he still does not have one of these

15 judgements, he can simply ask us and we will deliver him these judgements.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Usher. Is it in English?

17 THE REGISTRAR: It's in B/C/S.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: It's in B/C/S. So, Usher, could you please hand

19 that to the accused.

20 At this point, Mr. Seselj, if there are still any other judgements

21 that you require -- I know that you require them all. If there are any

22 judgements that have not been handed down to you in your language, could

23 you please bring that to my attention, and I will work on it.

24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Agius, the representative of the

25 Registry has not said - or at least I did not hear it - what his answer is

Page 288

1 to your direct question as to the Kupreskic judgement. Does this

2 judgement exist in the Serbian language? He hasn't mentioned it. They're

3 avoiding giving me this judgement for special reasons. Because this

4 judgement was made several years ago.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Registrar, please. What is --

6 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours --

7 JUDGE AGIUS: I do have some information myself, because I

8 checked, but I don't know if you have come prepared to furnish -- to

9 provide the Trial Chamber with this information. Yes.

10 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, the Translation Unit informed me --

11 informed me that they can deliver the translation within this week.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Within this week. Okay. So the position is -- this

13 is the information that I was given, too, but I mean, I had no possibility

14 of confirming it with the translation unit. But I am informed, and the

15 Registrar confirms it, that within this week you should be given -- handed

16 a copy of the Kupreskic judgement.

17 So I haven't gone through that list. I haven't seen it, actually,

18 I don't know if there are any other judgements that are missing, that have

19 not yet been handed to you. If there are, please bring them to my

20 attention, and I will make sure that they are handed to you at the

21 earliest possible, as I promised last time.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Agius, there are many judgements

23 missing. The Krstic appeals case, the Blaskic appeals case, and so on and

24 so forth. However, I wish to draw your attention to another problem.

25 Every time before a Status Conference, two or three days before, I receive

Page 289

1 several judgements from the Registry, and then I get nothing until the

2 next Status Conference. Then they give me a few more to show that they

3 have fulfilled at least a part of their obligations. Their obligation is

4 to disclose to me or send to me all the judgements as soon as possible,

5 because I have to become familiar with the jurisprudence of this Tribunal,

6 especially in view of the fact that this is a specific jurisprudence which

7 I have not been able to familiarise myself with anywhere else. I will

8 have to submit a pre-trial brief. I have to familiarise myself with the

9 jurisprudence of this Tribunal to see what it looks like in practice. I

10 know what it's like in theory on the basis of the Rules, but I have to see

11 what it looks like in practice. And it is your duty to make it possible

12 for me to familiarise myself thoroughly with the jurisprudence of this

13 Tribunal. If a hundred thousand pages are a problem for you, they're not

14 a problem for me. I can study a hundred thousand pages. I have studied

15 thousands of pages all my life. You say it's not rational. It is

16 rational for me to have everything at my disposal.

17 When the Prosecution delivers to me their motions, in my

18 submission number 37 I quoted many of them but I don't have any of these

19 decisions, any of these judgements. How then can I challenge the position

20 of the Prosecution unless I get all this material in Serbian where I can

21 find arguments to oppose what the Prosecution is saying? They rely on God

22 knows what, and all I can do is take their word for it because there is

23 nothing else I can rely on. That is why I have to familiarise myself with

24 the entire jurisprudence of this Tribunal exclusively in the Serbian

25 language because this is the only language I understand, and it all has to

Page 290

1 be in writing in hard copy.

2 As for searching the database of the Prosecution, I submitted a

3 request to the Registry to allow me to hire somebody I trust to search

4 this for me, someone who is skilled at working on a computer, and then

5 this person could search the Prosecution database that they make

6 available. But although this summer you changed Article 68 of the Rules,

7 subparagraph (1) is also something that is favourable to me because the

8 first paragraph is not brought into question. Everything has to be

9 delivered to me in hard copy and in the Serbian language.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, I realise that a hundred thousand pages will

11 not be a problem for you, Mr. Seselj. In fact, you've spent the last five

12 minutes saying a lot of words without giving me the answer I requested

13 from you.

14 I just said if there are any other decisions in that list that you

15 have not yet received, and you mentioned one or two only, then please let

16 me know. So go through that list. Not now, later on. If there are any

17 other decisions included in that list which should be made available to

18 you in your language and they haven't yet been made available to you,

19 bring that to my attention. I'll try to find out why this is so and make

20 sure that they are handed to you as soon as possible.

21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Agius.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: I think the matter ends there. Go through it, and

23 when you have further information for me, then make me aware of it, give

24 me the details, and I will do the rest. But there is no point in

25 discussing it any further. You can rest assured that if you require all

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Page 292

1 the decisions of this Tribunal in your language, you will get them all.

2 It's not a question of hard copy because they exist in hard copy, and it's

3 not a question of volume. That's not my problem. And there should be no

4 problems.

5 There are maybe a few other things left. I just wanted to make

6 sure that everyone is aware that the appeals decision on the interlocutory

7 -- Appeals Chamber's decision on the interlocutory appeal concerning

8 jurisdiction was decided on the 30th of August, and this reverts us back

9 to the position as it was previous to our decision. In other words, as

10 far as the indictment is concerned.

11 The question on the rights of the accused to -- the question on

12 the accused's motion for provisional release was decided. I am not aware

13 of any appeal on that. If there has been one, I would be glad to know.

14 And that brings us to the last part of the Status Conference. As

15 I said in the beginning, I am bound to inquire on the state of the

16 accused. I'm referring only to your state of health and the condition of

17 detention. We'll start with your state of health. Is there any matter

18 related to your health that you would like to bring to my notice,

19 Mr. Seselj? And then we'll talk about the condition of detention

20 afterwards.

21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Are you going to make it possible

22 for me to raise some status related questions? I have two status related

23 questions that are very important and that are more important than the

24 condition of my health.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's take them one by one, yes. Start with the

Page 293

1 first status question.

2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Agius, you talked about my

3 submission 37 a few minutes ago. By your decision dated the 6th of July,

4 you gave instructions that my submission 37 should not be disclosed to the

5 public, with the argumentation that is not contained at all in my

6 submission 37. You forbade it to be made public on the basis of something

7 that does not exist in submission 37. That is what I've been trying to

8 tell you from the very beginning of this Status Conference. You have been

9 given something completely different and --

10 JUDGE AGIUS: I have cut you off. And if you're trying -- if I

11 did that and you're trying to make public what I said will not be public,

12 you will not be given a chance. So if you want to make further

13 submissions on this, file them in writing, Mr. Seselj.

14 Next point.

15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I had no intention of disclosing

16 something that you forbade to be disclosed. But I would like to draw your

17 attention to something; namely, you forbade the publication of something

18 that simply does not exist in my text. Please read my submission 37 and

19 you will see that that, on the basis of which you forbade it, simply does

20 not exist in my text.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Move to the second point.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] On the 19th of August, I received

23 some material from the Prosecution on the basis of Rule 68. This is

24 material that is open to the public, and it was handed in earlier on to

25 Slobodan Milosevic, as it says here, and the Prosecution believes that

Page 294

1 these -- this material can be of an apologetic nature. It's supposed to

2 be exculpatory, but this is the word they used.

3 It contains only quotations from certain documents. Since these

4 documents are very important for my defence, and the statement of Zivota

5 Panic is particularly relevant - he confirmed here that all the volunteers

6 of the Serb Radical Party were within the JNA and that they were very

7 disciplined - I insist that all these documents be handed over to me in

8 their entirety, not only certain quotations, because perhaps these are not

9 the most important quotations, perhaps these are not the most important

10 pants.

11 Secondly, I insist that the Prosecution supplies me with all the

12 material they have about the war activities of the Serbian Guard that was

13 established by Vuk Draskovic and the Serbian Renewal Movement. It

14 consisted of Belgrade criminals. Because this material will be very

15 important for my defence. I have learned for a fact that they have a lot

16 of such material from Gospic, from Bosnia and Herzegovina, et cetera, et

17 cetera. So in order to prevent any kind of confusion and any kind of

18 confusion regarding the role of different factors in this war, I ask you

19 to instruct the Prosecution to provide me with all this material.

20 So anyway, if they provide me with any material, they should do so

21 in the entirety of those materials. So if they left out a particular

22 sentence and so on and so forth, then I can say, "Well, you've left out a

23 particular sentence, and so on," but I believe it is impermissible in

24 serious court proceedings to give only sections of documents or quotations

25 rather than the entire documents.

Page 295

1 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't know if Mr. Seselj knows this or not, but

2 basically we don't see -- none of the three Judges receive copies of what

3 is disclosed to you. We don't get copies of those, of that material. So

4 basically I have a note here that potential Rule 68 material in hard copy

5 in English and Serbian related to the Croatian part of the case was

6 disclosed to you on the 19th of August and that you accepted that

7 material, but I don't know what it is.

8 So what I suggest is the following: I will now address the

9 Prosecution and see if you are in a position to respond to Mr. Seselj's

10 request here and now. If not, I will invite Mr. Seselj to file a proper

11 motion addressing particularly this material about which I know absolutely

12 nothing, because we don't receive this material, and then you will have an

13 opportunity to respond. I don't know which one you prefer.

14 But are you in a position to deal with Mr. Seselj's submissions or

15 requests?

16 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, Your Honour, I can actually do that.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, okay.

18 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: In relation to the documents where Mr. Seselj

19 mentioned that he received only quotations from larger documents, that is

20 correct. It's actually quotations from witness statements of sensitive

21 sources where we have already indicated in our general submission how we

22 would do disclosure. We have already mentioned that we would not disclose

23 the entire statement of these sensitive sources in other cases but just

24 bring the quote that relates to Seselj. And the same material was

25 provided to Mr. Milosevic, and he also didn't get anything else than

Page 296

1 quotes from these statements.

2 In relation to the Serbian Guard, Vuk Draskovic, we disclosed what

3 is Rule 68 or potential Rule 68. The fact that other groups unrelated to

4 Mr. Seselj commit crimes throughout the territory of the former

5 Yugoslavia, I can't see how that can, in any event, be exculpatory for

6 this accused. Therefore, we do not intend to provide this material.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Seselj, I think this calls for a proper motion

8 on your part, because I don't know what, in actual fact, for all intents

9 and purposes, it's as if you're talking at cross-purposes, because since

10 we do not receive the material that is handed to you, we are not in a

11 position to -- we are not in a position to really know what needs to be

12 decided.

13 I think first issue that needs to be decided relates to this

14 material that was disclosed on the 19th of August, whether the abridged or

15 redacted or whatever information disclosed suffices according to the Rule

16 or whether it's the case of disclosing more or the entirety. That's the

17 first thing that needs to be decided.

18 And secondly, your request as it relates to -- I don't know which

19 movement you mentioned. One needs to see whether that falls under Rule 68

20 or not, and if it doesn't fall under Rule 68, whether it's something that

21 can be researched in the Prosecution database if you're given this

22 assistance, researched under Rule 68(i), or whether it has to be disclosed

23 under some other kind of -- under some other Rule.

24 So please file an ad hoc motion so that I can then communicate to

25 the Prosecution and decide these issues, because they are not necessarily

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Page 298

1 related, the one to the other. The first one relates to what has already

2 been disclosed; the other relates to material that has not been disclosed

3 and which you pretend to have disclosed, which the Prosecution is telling

4 you this is not -- has got nothing to do with you or with the case. So we

5 need a proper motion.

6 Your state of health. Are there any particular complaints that --

7 or matters you would like to raise in regard to your health?

8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Agius. Today several times

9 you stated that I was pretending, and then you stated that I speak for a

10 long time and I do not say anything, especially not in respect of what you

11 had asked me about, and this caused additional suffering in my part and in

12 addition to all the suffering that your robes cause me.

13 If you're going to prevent me from speaking again, I have decided

14 to look at you all the time regardless of how great and deep my suffering

15 may be. However, I must say that what you stated today is not really

16 something that a Judge in any court in this world should say.

17 I defend myself as I deem most expedient for these proceedings. I

18 know that this is going to cause additional hatred on your part and on the

19 part of the Prosecution, but that is your own affair.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. With regard to your condition of

21 detention in the unit, do you have any complaints?

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] No.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: So that basically brings an end to today's Status

24 Conference. The next one will be convened in accordance with the Rules,

25 that is within 120 days from today.

Page 299

1 The Pre-Trial Chamber stands adjourned, and the Status Conference

2 stands adjourned.

3 --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned

4 at 11.16 a.m.