1 Tuesday, 27 May 2008
2 [Open session]
3 --- Upon commencing at 2.17 p.m.
4 [The accused entered court]
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, could you please
6 call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Thank you and good afternoon, Your Honours. This
8 is case number IT-03-67-T, the Prosecutor versus Vojislav Seselj.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
10 This is May 27th, 2008, and I greet the representatives from the
11 OTP, Mr. Seselj, as well as everyone helping us.
12 I have two oral decisions to issue, one requires a closed session
13 and the other one an open session, so we'll first have the one in closed
15 Could we please move to closed session.
16 [Private session]
18 [Open session]
19 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're now in open session.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Oral decision on time spent.
21 Noting the hearing of May 22nd, 2008, during which the accused
22 made a great number of interventions which should have been done during
23 cross-examination but which the accused said were objections, notably at
24 the following pages: 7280, 7284 to 7285, 7291 to 7294, 7300, 7307 to
25 7308, 7315 to 7318, 7328 to 7331, 7349 to 7350, and 7362 of the French
1 transcript; noting the many warnings given by the Trial Chamber during
2 the hearing, warnings saying that these interventions belonged to the
3 cross-examination, notably on pages 7284, 7307 to 7308, 7315 to 7318,
4 7332, 7349, and 7363 of the French transcript; noting Rule 90(F) of the
5 Rules of Procedure and Evidence of the Tribunal, according to which the
6 Trial Chamber shall exercise control over the mode and order of
7 interrogating witnesses and presenting evidence so as to avoid needless
8 consumption of time; noting the order in which the guidelines on the
9 presentation of evidence and behaviour of the parties during the trial,
10 order dated November 15, 2007, in which, at paragraph 22, the
11 Trial Chamber said the following, I quote:
12 "In order to make sure that the trial will be fair and speedy,
13 the Trial Chamber considers that the time spent in cross-examining a
14 witness should not exceed the time spent during examination-in-chief,
15 unless there are specific circumstances such as a very short
16 examination-in-chief, an expert witness, or when fairness requires it, in
17 such case cross-examination may be lengthened."
18 Considering that at this stage of the procedure, the
19 Trial Chamber has noted that the accused has spent a great amount of time
20 for interventions during the Prosecution's examination-in-chief, whereas
21 these interventions should belong to the cross-examination; considering
22 that fairness requires that when such interventions are made, the time
23 used should be taken out of the time provided to the accused for his
24 cross-examination; considering, of course, that this mechanism will also
25 be applied to Prosecution, if need be; on these grounds, pursuant to
1 Rule 90(F), orders that the time spent by a party to make interventions
2 which the Trial Chamber will believe as belonging to the
3 cross-examination, will be taken out of the total time given to this
4 party for cross-examination, which means, in a nutshell, that if
5 objections are made when actually these objections should be questions
6 put to the witness during cross-examination, the Trial Chamber will
7 decide whether the time spent then will be deducted from the time
8 allocated to this party for its cross-examination. We wanted this to be
9 extremely clear.
10 I will now ask to move back into a private session, please.
11 [Private session]
11 Pages 7378-7383 redacted. Private session.
5 [Open session]
6 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're now in open session.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, I believe you
8 wanted to say something about the oral decision we handed down on time
9 allotted, unless I'm mistaken. I don't know.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I wanted to ask where the
11 sense of all that is, because in that way my procedural rights are being
12 curtailed; that every time I have to think whether what I'm going to say
13 is in order or not. And if the Trial Chamber deems that it is not all
14 right, then that time is deducted from my cross-examination. I'm just
15 letting you know that none of my objections meant asking questions of the
16 witness. It was an objection to the manner in which the Prosecutor was
17 conducting the examination-in-chief. And you saw, when the previous
18 witness was examined, how many times the Prosecutor intervened, and each
19 time there was no serious reason for him to do so. So it seems that
20 there's a rule for the Prosecution here and another set of rules for me,
21 and you won't be able to convince me that that is not so.
22 And you cautioned the Prosecutor that he had gone too far in
23 objecting and interrupting me, just for interrupting me, whereas each of
24 my objections had meaning. Now, it's up to a subjective assessment
25 whether the objections should be made during the examination-in-chief or
1 during the cross-examination. I believe that those objections should
2 have been made during the examination-in-chief, because otherwise the
3 Prosecutor would be the one who dictates and determines in advance what
4 my cross-examination is going to be like. So the objections I raised in
5 Court here have nothing to do with my cross-examination and my Defence
6 case as I have conceived it. And you'll see, when I come to
7 cross-examine, I'm not going to mention the matters at all that I raised
8 objections about during the examination-in-chief.
9 And it is my right to intervene at all times whenever I consider
10 that the Prosecution is not conducting the examination-in-chief properly,
11 according to the Rules, and that is when the Prosecution doesn't want to
12 learn the truth, all he wants to do is to score points for the
13 indictment. And the Prosecutor must not behave in that way. The
14 Prosecutor must be interested in establishing the truth, first and
15 foremost, to assist the Trial Chamber to arrive at the truth, and not to
16 keep quiet about the facts that it knows are true and sweep them under
17 the carpet and just to insist upon something that could bear out the
18 indictment, although it knows in advance that many of those matters are
19 not based on the truth. So you've curtailed that right, as far as I'm
20 concerned, and the argument you gave was that you were going to save
21 time. But I can see that you're going to save far more time quite soon
22 than you expected to save. What can I do about that? There we have it.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] A very brief explanation. It
24 is always useful to highlight this with examples.
25 Let's imagine the witness coming in, in a few moments' time,
1 well, the Prosecution will show a picture to this witness and say, "Look
2 at the minaret, and it's the one on the ground," and you will stand up
3 and say that, "This a leading question," and you would be quite right.
4 Then your time is not deducted, and then you are right to raise an
5 objection because the Prosecution should have said to the witness, "Look
6 at the picture and tell us what you see." "On this photograph the
7 minaret is not standing and there are stones on the ground." That's my
8 first example.
9 My second example is this: The Prosecutor says, "Look at the
10 photograph. What can you say about it?" The witness then answers and
11 says, "Well, the minaret is on the ground." And the Prosecutor would
12 then say, "Is it Seselj's men who have done this?" And then you get to
13 your feet and you raise an objection, and you say, "Well, Seselj's men
14 have nothing to do with this. These are Arkan's men. This has got
15 nothing to do with me." This objection should be part of your
16 cross-examination, and this is a theoretical example I've provided. On
17 answering the question put, the person said, "These are Seselj's men,"
18 but you would like to say that -- or you could say, "There were other
19 people there, too, not only Arkan's men. How do you know that these were
20 Seselj's men?" That is a typical question that can be put during
22 These are just examples, but of course we don't want to prejudice
23 you in any way. Some objections can be substantiated; others can only be
24 put during -- or other questions can only be put during
25 cross-examination. It's for you to establish a clear distinction between
1 the two. Since you are well-versed in procedural matters, when you see a
2 problem, you highlight it. This hasn't escaped me.
3 "During my cross-examination, if the Prosecutor raises objections
4 all the time, then his time is not taken off him." You're quite right in
5 that sense. But you may have noticed that I have already seen that I am
6 somewhat irritated when objections are raised which wastes time of the
8 The Trial Chamber has a number of instruments at its disposal.
9 If it feels that the Prosecution is not doing its work properly, and when
10 too many objections are raised during the Defence case or during
11 cross-examination, the Trial Chamber has a whole series of instruments it
12 can use, and we shall be very careful. The Prosecutor can say or raise
13 an objection and say as part of the cross-examination, certain facts are
14 mentioned which are not contained in the indictment, that can happen, and
15 then the Trial Chamber will see what to do. But if the objections are
16 aimed at destabilising you or, rather, to interrupt the thread of your
17 arguments, then we will intervene. And if we can't take time off, we
18 have other means of coping with the problem. I have said this many a
20 The trial does not rest on objections and incidents in the Court.
21 The trial rests on the evidence of the witnesses and on the documents.
22 This is what, at the end of the day and beyond all reasonable doubt, we
23 will base our conclusions on, and we will then decide whether it is a
24 question of determining guilt or not, but this will not rest on any
1 I would like to tell both parties again that what we are
2 interested in, what the Bench is interested in - we are professional
3 Judges - are the facts of the case, and to avoid objections on whether
4 there are leading questions or not leading questions, it is important to
5 be disciplined, each of you. Try and put questions in a neutral fashion.
6 For instance, look at the type of questions the Judges put. The way the
7 Judges put questions lead to no disputed question afterwards. It's not a
8 matter of knowing whether it's a leading question or not. We put
9 questions in a neutral fashion which triggers an answer which will have a
10 much greater probative value than a leading question, for which the
11 probative value will be less important.
12 So I beseech you, rather than wasting time with objections which
13 we have to then settle, which we have to then explain, since we are all
14 professionals, please keep to your field of expertise. We're perfectly
15 capable of putting questions. Mr. Seselj, you're perfectly capable of
16 cross-examining a witness. You have demonstrated this many a time.
17 This is what we want: We want the truth to emerge from the
18 questions that are put. We don't want a sterile war of words between the
19 parties, which wastes the Court's time. It's not because you accuse each
20 other of various things that we will have any facts that are important to
21 us in this case.
22 I don't know how much time we still have for this witness.
23 Registrar, could you give me the countdown again, please, and then we
24 shall bring the witness into the courtroom.
25 Mr. Seselj.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would just like to remind you,
2 Mr. President, of the case when we had those photographs. In one
3 photograph, we saw a mosque intact, and on another photograph, we saw the
4 ruins of some mosque. Both the Prosecutor and the witness insisted it
5 was one and the same mosque. However, when I see that this is an obvious
6 forgery, I have to intervene, I have to say that to you. It cannot go
7 unobserved, can it?
8 You saw this wrought-iron gate by the mosque. No one could have
9 changed anything with a mosque that is 300 years old, so obviously these
10 were two different mosques. That is why I believe that I do have the
11 right to intervene and to object. However, you've been very restrictive
12 in terms of my rights.
13 I would like to remind you of the previous three expert witness,
14 Oberschall, Theunens and Tomic, who were instructed, trained as a matter
15 of fact, to spend as much of my time as possible, and they kept dodging
16 my questions and went on talking and talking about all sorts of other
17 things. I was not protected by the Trial Chamber then, although I
18 cautioned you a few times. So this was artificial use of my time.
19 They've been trained to do that kind of thing, and we'll see whether this
20 one's going to do the same thing. However, when I intervene --
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, this is a perfect
22 example, and I thank you for having quoted it. Yes, in fact, there was a
23 photograph where you could see a mosque, and another photograph alongside
24 it. Then you could have perfectly well said that you challenged the fact
25 that these photographs were photographs of the same mosque, and during
1 cross-examination you can then say this to the witness, "Look at the
2 photograph. You see a wrought-iron ramp on the side. When does this go
3 back to, is it 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th century?" Then you could have
4 highlighted what is important to you, and you could have presented the
5 facts of your case. But it's during cross-examination that you need to
6 do this. And you can develop your argument, and then we weigh your
7 argument afterwards. So you could have just said, "I challenge the
8 photograph because these two photographs are not photographs of the same
9 mosque, and I shall demonstrate this." And then, when the time comes for
10 your cross-examination, you address the issue again.
11 So this was a perfect example, and in a few seconds you just say,
12 "I disagree with these photographs, and I shall demonstrate it during
13 cross-examination," and then we move on. It's quite simple.
14 Mr. Mundis is on his feet. Mr. Mundis, I believe you want to say
16 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. Before I do that, let me
17 just say good afternoon to everyone in and around the courtroom.
18 Two points. First of all, as we indicated on Thursday, during a
19 number of the interventions by the accused, it's improper to object to
20 the answer that's received, and that is what happened last week and
21 consumed a disproportionate amount of time during the direct examination,
22 and we will continue pushing that point in the future when and if it
23 arises. The fact that the witness -- that the witness answers a question
24 in a way that is not satisfactory to the accused is not the proper
25 grounds for an objection.
1 As the Presiding Judge has simply indicated, all of these matters
2 are questions that he can put to the witness during cross-examination.
3 If the accused thinks that there are parts of the report that are forged,
4 then he can raise objections at the point when we tender the report into
5 evidence. But it is not a time for a running debate between the accused
6 and the witness during the direct examination. That is improper, and we
7 will continue to push that point in the future on this.
8 I also must put on the record a vehement objection to the accused
9 indicating that we have trained witnesses or coached witnesses to avoid
10 answering the questions that the accused puts to them. That is
11 absolutely incorrect, and I must vehemently oppose any statements made by
12 the accused that the Office of the Prosecution trains witnesses not to
13 answer his questions or coaches witnesses not to answer his questions,
14 particularly with respect to expert witnesses. We do not do that, we
15 have not done that, we will not do that. That is not something that is
16 proper, and it is not something that is done. And I want to make it very
17 clear, for the benefit of the transcript and the record and the audience
18 and the public and the Trial Chamber, that we do not coach witnesses, we
19 do not train them to avoid giving answers.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Let's bring the
21 witness in now, please.
22 Let me remind you that he is an expert witness.
23 The Prosecution has 25 minutes left. This is the countdown: We
24 have 25 minutes left for the Prosecution. Mr. Mundis, you have 25
25 minutes; is that right? Did you do your own calculations?
1 MR. MUNDIS: Yes, Mr. President, and again, of course the
2 Registry's numbers are definitive and we have 25 minutes left.
3 [The witness entered court]
4 WITNESS: ANDRAS RIEDLMAYER [Resumed]
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, sir. Welcome
6 back in the courtroom. I hope the time you've spent here hasn't been too
7 long for you.
8 Normally speaking, your testimony should come to an end today. I
9 hope that there will be no mishaps which would prevent this.
10 The Prosecution has 25 minutes left to put questions to you.
11 After that, Mr. Seselj will cross-examine you.
12 I shall now give the floor to Mr. Mundis.
13 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President.
14 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, I'm sorry, I don't wish to slow things
15 down, but I don't know the procedure.
16 As instructed on previous occasions, I did not discuss my
17 evidence with anyone, but I did consult my notes when I was back at the
18 hotel, and I found a better pre-destruction photo of the mosque about
19 which there was the confusion in Mostar, the Sevri Hadji Hasan Mosque, so
20 if Your Honours would find it useful, I can show it to the Court; if not,
21 I can put it away.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Let's put it up on
23 the ELMO straight away, please.
24 THE WITNESS: And I brought extra copies in case anyone --
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let's give a copy to
1 Mr. Seselj.
2 THE WITNESS: And if you could also put up the image of the
3 Sevri Hadji Hasan Mosque.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Can you tell us about this
5 photograph which you have found?
6 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry. The photograph is captioned as to
7 source and what it shows. It's a photograph -- archival photograph from
8 the 1960s, showing the mosque before it was destroyed. And the reason I
9 brought it into Court is, first of all, it shows the fact that as of the
10 1960s, it had no fence. The fence is something that was erected sometime
11 between the time that this photo was taken and the time of the
12 destruction of the mosque in 1992. And, secondly, it is a much better
13 view of the facade of the mosque that shows the destruction that was on
14 the PowerPoint display. And you can see, next to the base of the
15 minaret, that the windows almost go down to the ground.
16 Can we have the PowerPoint image?
17 MR. MUNDIS: We've located that, and it's available in Sanction.
18 THE WITNESS: Okay. If you look on the image on the right and
19 then compare the image on the ELMO or in the handout, you can see that it
20 is indeed the same building. If you compare the image on the left, you
21 can see, from the shape of the minaret, that the minaret is identical, as
22 is the general profile of the building.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you are saying that the
24 wall, which we can see, and the metal ramp or the metal fence was built
25 after the photograph taken in 1960; is that right? Is that what we
1 should understand?
2 THE WITNESS: That is correct. The wall is on the side that
3 separates it from the next lot, and the fence with the columns and the
4 iron was on the street facade. And since it's clearly not there in the
5 photograph taken in the 1960s, I assumed that it was built sometime in
6 the years between the taking of that photograph and the destruction of
7 the mosque.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Objection. At the risk of having
9 this taken away from my own time yet again, Mr. President, please have a
10 look at this first mosque now. I have to use two screens now. There are
11 no windows on that mosque. On the other mosque, there are windows, and
12 there is also a wrought-iron fence. And the other one has windows and no
13 fence whatsoever. You see that the third mosque is right by the road, a
14 very wide road at that, and you see that the first one is in the middle
15 of a field. You can see that the older one has trees that are a bit
16 smaller. However, these trees would have been a lot taller if there had
17 been that much time in the meantime. I really don't know. The minarets
18 are similar, but that is not a rare thing. There are similar minarets in
19 the same area.
20 However, now, if we look at these three photographs, do they
21 pertain to the same building? I think that is highly unbelievable.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, please, two things
23 have been highlighted by Mr. Seselj. I noticed this myself.
24 Two things: The trees. The photographs you've given us, in 1960
25 there are some trees that don't have any leaves, seemingly, but a few
1 years later, 20 or 30 years later, these trees should have been much
2 bigger. But on the photograph we have here on our screen, the trees are
3 much smaller than the trees we can see on your picture taken in 1960. So
4 that is a question mark, the first question mark.
5 The second question mark: The windows. If you look at the
6 windows, on your photograph which was taken in 1960, the windows are at
7 the top or at the bottom. On the top, on the first floor, the windows
8 are black, and at the bottom, they're black also. On the photograph
9 which you show us on PowerPoint, strangely enough the windows at the top
10 seem to have been walled in. They're little holes, small holes you can
11 see, but the windows at the bottom are difficult to distinguish. They
12 seem to be the same, but this does raise a doubt, I must say. I'm not
13 quite sure whether these photographs are photographs of the same mosque,
14 and I doubt all the more when I look at the photograph that shows the
15 destruction of the mosque, where -- from what angle was this photograph
16 taken? What is destroyed? Did the photographer take this photograph
17 when he was standing in front of the minaret or did he take this from
18 another angle where you can see both? But if it's from the angle, then
19 you can see that the windows are not the same.
20 So these are just remarks of mine. I don't know. What do you
21 have to say to this?
22 THE WITNESS: Okay. Your Honour, first of all, let me orient the
24 The three photographs are taken from three slightly different
25 angles. Starting with the 1960 photograph on the handout, okay, that's
1 taken facing the corner of the building. You can see both the facade
2 that is perpendicular to the street and the facade that is parallel to
3 the street. Okay?
4 On the photograph on the PowerPoint, on the left, you can see
5 that the two top windows, they're not walled in. It's not a very
6 good-quality photograph, and for that I apologise, but in restoration in
7 the former Yugoslavia, it was quite common to try to imitate the old
8 Ottoman carved stone grills by having these prefabricated concrete insets
9 with round holes in them inserted into the window. And on the Miharab
10 wall, those two windows have had those set in. I've seen that in a lot
11 of mosques. Apparently, on the street facade they didn't do that, and so
12 the windows are still much more visible. It means they're glazed,
13 meaning they have glass instead of the grill.
14 The post-destruction photo, if you look very carefully, is
15 clearly taken from the street. You can even see a bit of the sidewalk.
16 As to the trees, the 1960s shot shows trees only along the edge
17 of the sidewalk. You don't see those at all in the photograph on the
18 left in the PowerPoint because it's taken from another angle, showing the
19 facade that is perpendicular to the street. And the destruction shot is
20 so close up that you don't see anything to either side, so it's hard to
21 tell anything about trees.
22 That's all I really wanted to say. The photographs are in your
23 hands to examine and to draw whatever conclusions you see fit.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, now let's go beyond
25 this issue of understanding whether this mosque is the same on those
2 This mosque of Sevri Hadji Hasan in Mostar, this mosque was
3 destroyed, wasn't it?
4 THE WITNESS: It was heavily damaged, yes.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And today, has it been rebuilt
6 since or is it still in the same condition as what we see on the
7 photograph, if it's the same mosque?
8 THE WITNESS: I saw that mosque for the first time in the year
9 2001, when reconstruction was just beginning under the auspices of
10 UNESCO. At that time, it looked not all that dissimilar from the
11 photograph you see on the PowerPoint, the difference being that the
12 PowerPoint was taken in 1992 and so it surely shows only the damage that
13 the mosque suffered in 1992. Since then, in 2004, the reconstruction has
14 been finished, and now the mosque is once again standing.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
16 Mr. Mundis, you have the floor.
17 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honours, the Prosecution would tender this
18 handout that Mr. Riedlmayer has produced to be given an in-court exhibit
19 number, please.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let's have another exhibit
21 number, Registrar, please.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit number P445.
23 Examination by Mr. Mundis: [Continued]
24 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, I'd like to pick up where we left off on
25 Thursday, and if we could perhaps return to that part of the slide show
1 where we left off.
2 Now, if you look at the screen, if you could please, again, for
3 the benefit of Mr. Seselj, read the caption of this slide for his
4 benefit, please.
5 A. "Neighbouring buildings remained intact."
6 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, you discussed this subject in your report, and
7 I'm wondering if you can just briefly give us the conclusions that you
9 A. Okay. In my field survey and in my report, I took great care,
10 whenever possible, whenever that information was available, to note the
11 condition of buildings near the destroyed mosques. The reason I thought
12 this information was useful, potentially, is it would show whether the
13 building had been singled out or whether it had been caught in some
14 generalised destruction of the area. And in my findings, in footnote
15 number 9 appended to paragraph 18, this is 0469-3678, I point out that in
16 the great majority, 80 per cent of the 88 cases for which such
17 information was available, other buildings adjacent to the damaged or
18 destroyed Islamic sacral site were either found to be intact or had
19 suffered lesser degrees of damage.
20 In the remaining 20 per cent of the cases, both the mosque or
21 other Islamic site and the adjacent buildings had suffered the same
22 degree of damage. And a very similar statistical conclusion comes out
23 for the Roman Catholic monuments in the survey, and if you hold on a
24 second I can get you the footnote on that. Yes, that is on page 4693685.
25 It's footnote 19, and it is appended to paragraph 40. And there it's
1 84 per cent of the 25 cases out of 27 for which such information was
2 available. The house of worship, the church, showed a higher degree of
4 In the cases for which information like this was not available,
5 those were buildings that stood by themselves, and therefore it was not
7 MR. MUNDIS: If we could then perhaps go to the next slide,
9 Q. And before you comment on this, Mr. Riedlmayer, I point out this
10 is in the B/C/S version of the report at page 623, and in the English
11 version ERN number 0469-2575.
12 Mr. Riedlmayer, can you tell us, please, what this slide depicts?
13 A. This is a pre-war photo of the Krpic Dzamija or the mosque by the
14 hospital in Bijeljina. It's a funeral at the mosque before the war.
15 MR. MUNDIS: And if we could please, just for the benefit of
16 time, skip ahead two slides.
17 THE WITNESS: This is a photo -- a set of two photos that I took
18 of the place where the mosque used to be when I visited Bijeljina on my
19 field survey in July of 2002. They show two sides of the rectangular
20 plot. You can see that the building is completely gone, but you can also
21 see that the buildings surrounding the square on all sides are, in fact,
22 intact. And I took the trouble of walking around and looking at the
23 buildings to see if they had been recently reconstructed, and that was in
24 fact not the case. The paint on them was old, the roof tiles had a
25 pattern on them, so from that I conclude that they were not harmed and
1 the mosque, indeed, was destroyed. The only thing left on the site of
2 the mosque is a man selling fruit and vegetables and the usual large
3 containers of rubbish.
4 MR. MUNDIS:
5 Q. Can you tell us what you mean, Mr. Riedlmayer, about the usual
6 large containers of rubbish?
7 A. I mention this in my report, that in a considerable number of
8 cases in my survey, especially when the mosque was located in a town or a
9 city, the site of the mosque seems to have been singled out as the place
10 to pile large overflowing containers of rubbish, in some cases junked
11 automobiles. It is a conclusion that I make that this has to be some
12 sort of deliberate act meant to signify something, given that in the
13 middle of the town, just from public health reasons, you wouldn't
14 normally deposit large amounts of garbage. This is tidier than most, and
15 we'll see examples where you see much more of it.
16 MR. MUNDIS: If we could please go to the next slide. While
17 that's coming up, this is --
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, please, this question
19 about the refuse or garbage, of course, you can see bins, dustbins, which
20 are close to the site of the mosque. It may be just by chance. There
21 are cities where there aren't any dustbins at all. You can see, for
22 instance, in Italy, even in Paris, in major cities, there are dustbins.
23 So why do you make a connection between garbage bins and the mosques?
24 Could they just happen by chance to have them there? They have to be put
1 THE WITNESS: Yes, they do have to be put somewhere, but it is
2 not a coincidence, Your Honours, that in virtually every town where there
3 was an empty site where a mosque used to be, there were large amounts of
4 garbage, and it was often located in such a way that it was clearly where
5 the entrance of the mosque used to be. In some cases, it was located
6 right next to a hospital or an apartment building, not a place where a
7 well-maintained municipality would choose, normally, to deposit its
9 This, unfortunately, for the garbage is not a particularly
10 graphic example, but if you have patience you will see another one and I
11 list a number of them in my report and you can see the photos on the
12 database. It is not the exception; it was definitely a pattern.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] For Bijeljina, there is no
14 mosque left. I don't know today what is the ethnical composition of that
15 place, but if there are Muslims, they do go and pray somewhere, don't
16 they? And, therefore, then they could ask the municipality to rebuild
17 the mosque in question. They can insist on that. There are programmes
18 for reconstruction of mosques. There's UNESCO, but there are also Arab
19 countries, donor countries. Why is there no rebuilding of a mosque,
20 according to you?
21 THE WITNESS: This is not according to me, Your Honour. A case
22 was brought, in fact several cases were brought before the Human Rights
23 Chamber of Bosnia-Herzegovina, asking -- brought by the Islamic
24 community, asking for the return of the use of these parcels and for
25 permits to rebuild mosques. The permits were refused, and the
1 Human Rights Chamber's judgements were ignored over a period of years.
2 In very recent times, one mosque out of five has been
3 reconstructed in Bijeljina, but at the time I was there in 2002, the
4 prayers were being performed in the basement of an ordinary house,
5 because that was the only space available.
6 MR. MUNDIS: If we could please turn to the next slide, and this
7 is contained in the B/C/S report at page 598 and in the English version
8 at page 0469-2607 through 2608.
9 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, can you tell us, please, what's depicted on these
10 two slides, beginning with the picture on the left?
11 A. On the left, you see the Catholic parish priest in Bosanski Samac
12 holding a photograph and standing next to an architectural model of what
13 his parish church looked like before the war.
14 On the right, you see a photograph taken shortly after the war by
15 ICTY investigators. The empty plot with the fence is where the Catholic
16 church used to stand. Across the street from it, intact, is the
17 Serbian Orthodox church.
18 Q. And just for the benefit of the transcript, sir, can you describe
19 what the Serbian Orthodox church looks like?
20 A. The Serbian Orthodox church is standing across the street, it was
21 along the same street and in fairly close vicinity to the site of the
22 former Catholic church, and it looked in immaculate condition when I was
24 MR. MUNDIS: Can we go to the next slide, please.
25 Q. This is described in page 531 of the B/C/S version of the report,
1 and in the English report at ERN number 0469-2700 through 2701.
2 Mr. Riedlmayer, can you tell us, please, what these slides
3 depict, beginning again with the photo on the left?
4 A. The photo on the left is a pre-war photo of the Dugalica Dzamija
5 or the Dzamija -- the mosque of Veljudin Bakrac in Nevesinje. It's a
6 16th century mosque. The photograph on the right shows the empty site of
7 the mosque. In the background, you see some houses surrounding the site.
8 By database entry, it also shows the other side of the site with more
9 intact houses.
10 What's notable is behind the red car on the right-hand picture is
11 the Serbian Orthodox church, which was across a very narrow alleyway from
12 the mosque and which is intact. On the pre-war photo, just to orient
13 you, the alleyway is on the shaded side of the stone wall. It is a way
14 of cutting through from a street where I'm standing in the right-hand
15 photo to the next street, which is where the clock tower in the
16 background is.
17 Q. And can you tell us, Mr. Riedlmayer, who took the photograph on
18 the right?
19 A. I took the photograph on the right. The photograph on the left
20 comes from a publication put out in 1990, just before the war.
21 Q. And just so we're clear, sir, in the photograph on the right, can
22 you tell us where the mosque previously stood?
23 A. The mosque stood basically in the space in front of the
24 red-and-black car and all the way to the space behind the weeds on the
1 MR. MUNDIS: If we can please go, then, to the next slide.
2 Q. And again, sir, turning to a new topic, can you read the caption
3 of this slide for the benefit of Mr. Seselj?
4 A. "Catholic and Muslim libraries and archives were destroyed."
5 MR. MUNDIS: And this photograph, Your Honours, is described in
6 page 410 of the Serbian language version of the report and at
7 page 0469-2871 of the English report.
8 Q. Can you tell us, sir, who took this photograph, if you know?
9 A. The photograph comes from the Roman Catholic bishopric of
10 Sarajevo, of Vrhbosna, Sarajevo.
11 Q. And what does this photograph depict?
12 A. The photograph was taken immediately after the war, and it shows
13 the -- what remains of the archives and library of the Order of the
14 Handmaids of the Child Jesus, the only Roman Catholic women's religious
15 order to be founded in Bosnia. This is their mother house in Sarajevo
16 where the order was founded in the 19th century, and it contained all the
17 records of the order for about a century.
18 MR. MUNDIS: Can we then go, please, to the next slide. This is
19 described on page 350 of the Serbian --
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Objection.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] That pertains to the relevance,
23 because here it says that this monastery was allegedly set on fire around
24 Christmas of 1994, and this is not relevant for the indictment against
25 me. It is not covered by that period.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Mundis, in the English text
2 I can see here that this would have been burnt around Christmas 1994?
3 THE WITNESS: Not this one. The reference is to the convent of
4 the nuns, the previous entry, and it says here that the convent was
5 occupied in April of 1992, and the nuns expelled, and then a second stage
6 was when it was burned. So the 1994 is not the only incident.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. That --
8 THE ACCUSED: [No interpretation]
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I will give you the floor in a
11 According to the text that you have marked here, you have said
12 that you got some information from the Catholic Church the convent was
13 occupied in April 1992 by Serbs. The nuns were expelled, and therefore
14 there would have been looting and vandalism, after which last phase,
15 Christmas 1994, and then it would have been burnt, the convent would have
16 been burnt. So --
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can I put in my objection, please?
18 First of all, this Prosecution expert cannot talk about the
19 occupation, who occupied the monastery.
20 Secondly, what -- why is this any business of his that the nuns
21 had been expelled? They may have been expelled, but that is none of his
22 business. That's not part of his expertise. He can base his statement
23 that this monastery was demolished on the basis of hearsay. He only can
24 say that this monastery was set on fire and that was set on fire in 1994.
25 That is the only topic that he can deal with in his expert report. All
1 the rest is just conjecture, hearsay.
2 So I'm just making this objection regarding the relevance of all
3 this, because I cannot be held responsible for things that were torn down
4 outside of the period covered by my indictment.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] This has been recorded.
6 Mr. Mundis, you have the floor.
7 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. If we can continue, then,
8 please, with the next slide. This is depicted on page 350 of the Serbian
9 version of the report, and in the English report at page 0469-2955.
10 Q. Can you tell us, Mr. Riedlmayer, what's depicted in this
12 A. This is a photograph taken of the Franciscan Monastery and
13 Theological Seminary in the suburb of Sarajevo, Nedzarici.
14 Q. And, sir, why did you include this in your report?
15 A. I included it mainly because part of my commission was not to
16 look not only at building, but also at institutions, and this particular
17 institution was, first of all, an institution of education, but also it
18 was home to a famous library of prayer books and a religious archive.
19 Now, as is the case with all of the information on libraries and
20 archives, I had to rely on published information from before the war as
21 well as information supplied by the owners of those libraries and
22 archives. I was obviously not present to witness the destruction of
23 these libraries and archives.
24 Q. And the photograph, sir, on this slide, do you know approximately
25 when it was taken?
1 A. It was taken in 1996, immediately after the war. Probably, from
2 the snow on the ground, in the first two months after the war. And you
3 can see that the monastery is missing its windows and there are scorch
4 marks, so clearly something has happened to the building. It's still
6 Q. And I would ask you now to take a look at the slide that you see
7 on the screen. And do you know, sir, who took this photograph?
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Objection. The previous monastery,
9 it's quite obvious that it was devastated as the Serbian forces withdrew,
10 and that was after the Dayton Agreement was signed, because the Serb
11 forces withdrew from that area in that time period. Now, whether the
12 forces did that or whether this was done by unidentified civilians after
13 the withdrawal of the forces, that is of no concern of us. What is of
14 concern of us is when did this happen, and this obviously happened after
15 the period relevant for the indictment.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] About the date of the events,
17 it seems that on page 2, you allude to a statement made by someone, who
18 says that on the 8th of June, 1992, and so on and so forth, the soldiers,
19 wearing camouflage with berets and Chetnik insignia, who told you that?
20 THE WITNESS: This comes from sources named -- it is
21 Dr. Marko Karamatic, he's a Franciscan brother and also a professor of
22 history and former librarian of the Franciscan Theological Seminary. He
23 and I corresponded by e-mail, and I asked him to tell me what he
24 remembered of the fate of his library and what happened during the war.
25 And so what you have there is my translation of what he sent me.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So he dates that in
2 June 1992, doesn't he?
3 THE WITNESS: Yes, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
5 MR. MUNDIS: Again for the record, Your Honour, this issue could
6 have been dealt with in cross-examination, in our submission.
7 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, turning now to the photo depicted on the slide in
8 front of you, can you tell us when this picture was taken and by whom?
9 A. The photo was taken in 2002, and it comes from a brochure about
10 the seminary. But I also visited it.
11 MR. MUNDIS: Can we go now, please, to the next slide, which is
12 described on page 505 of the Serbian version, and in the English version
13 at page 0469-2737.
14 Q. Can you tell us, Mr. Riedlmayer, what's depicted in this
16 A. This is photo of the main mosque in Zvornik, the
17 Rijecanska Dzamija or Market Mosque, which was also the headquarters of
18 the Islamic Community for the Municipality of Zvornik.
19 If you look down the street, you can see that at the end of the
20 street, on your right, is the mosque, and in front of the mosque is a
21 tree. Such trees are linden trees, they are "lipa" in Serbian, and they
22 were traditionally planted next to the entrances of mosques. I point it
23 out, because in the next photo, imagine you've walked to the end of the
24 street and turned towards the mosque, what you see there is the tree
25 still there, a large deposit of garbage at the base of the tree, and a
1 large empty site where the mosque stood.
2 According to the information I got from the former imam of the
3 mosque, who was also secretary of the Islamic Community of Zvornik,
4 destroyed along with the mosque was the archive of the local Islamic
5 Community, which held, among other things, the property deeds for the
6 Vakuf, the Islamic endowments, as well as other records of the community
7 and its members.
8 Q. And if we could again go to the next slide, and again, sir, for
9 the benefit of Dr. Seselj, could you please read this slide?
10 A. "Sites were appropriated to new uses or desecrated."
11 Q. And can you tell us what you mean by this part of the slide show,
12 as derived from your report?
13 A. This is, in part, something that was mentioned before, which is
14 the placement of garbage, or junked automobiles, or flea markets, on the
15 sites of former mosques, or turning them into parking lots, but there are
16 also other ways in which these sites were appropriated, and I show some
17 examples of that.
18 Q. And if we could please go to the next slide. This is again from
19 page 565 of the Serbian version; the English version, 0469-2652 through
21 Can you tell us, Mr. Riedlmayer, starting with the photo on the
22 left, what is depicted on this slide?
23 A. The photo on the left is a pre-war photograph of the Hadzi-Pasina
24 Dzamija in Brcko also known as the mosque next to the hospital. The
25 photo comes from the cover of an Islamic religious magazine from the
2 Q. And the photo on the right, sir, who took that photograph?
3 A. I did.
4 Q. And when did you take that photograph?
5 A. In July of 2002.
6 Q. And what is this site being used for today?
7 A. In the background, the building you see is the hospital, and at
8 the corner of the lot you can see the typical outline of a linden tree.
9 Linden trees, when they're fully grown, tend to have a profile much like
10 a pyramid. And at the base of the linden tree, you don't see it very
11 well on this slide, but I can assure you I stood next to it, is another
12 large deposit of garbage.
13 What was remarkable about the site was that it was very hard to
14 even trace the foundations. The entrance, according to the imam of
15 Brcko, was right next to the tree, but the foundations had actually been
16 dug up. There were trenches on the field, depressions in the grass,
17 where the rubble had been. It had been all taken away.
18 MR. MUNDIS: If we could then please go to the next slide, which
19 is contained in page 577 of the Serbian report and pages 0469-2637
20 through 2638 of the English version.
21 Q. Can you tell us, sir, what is depicted on these two slides, again
22 beginning with the slide on the left?
23 A. The left-hand photo is a pre-war photo of the Sava Mosque or
24 Savska Dzamija, so-called, because it's near the Sava River, in the
25 center of the market in Brcko. You can orient yourselves, Your Honours,
1 by looking at the right-hand side of that photo. You can see, just next
2 to the mosque, the end of the iron bridge. And if you look at the photo
3 on the right, you can see the same iron bridge, and next to it you can
4 see a light stantion, which is either the same light stantion you see on
5 the pre-war photo or probably a replacement. If you look in the
6 background you can also spot some of the low buildings in the background.
7 And what's remarkable about this mosque that is once again there
8 was a deep depression. Even the rubble was dug up and taken away,
9 according to the local imam. And I was able to confirm this by looking
10 at testimony from the ICTY, which is cited in my report, as well as from
11 another archaeologist. They were employed by the ICTY to excavate a mass
12 grave on the edge of the town, and they report that rubble identifiable
13 as having come from a mosque by the carvings was dumped on top of the
14 mass grave.
15 MR. MUNDIS: If we could then please go to the next slide. This
16 is derived from page 494 of the Serbian language of the report and
17 page 0469-2748 in the English version.
18 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, can you please tell us what's depicted on this
19 slide, beginning with the photograph on the left?
20 A. The photograph on the left again comes from the cover of an
21 Islamic religious magazine published just before the war. What it shows
22 is the re-dedication of this shrine which was renovated just shortly
23 before the war. The shrine is the burial place of two 16th century
24 Muslim saints, brothers from Persia, who are -- according to legend, they
25 were the first to bring Islam to this area.
1 Q. And the photograph on the right, sir, can you tell us, first of
2 all, if you know, when this was taken and by whom?
3 A. This was taken by myself in July of 2002, and you can get some
4 scale by looking at the person standing in the middle background on the
5 right. They are standing next to the spot where the two saints' tombs
6 are, and parked on top of it is a wrecked lorry. And the shrine itself
7 has been razed down to its foundations.
8 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honours, I note the time. I'm not sure how
9 much time I have left. I have three slides left, and then I would like
10 to ask the witness a few questions about the large map.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, please be quick, because
12 you don't have a lot of time left. So please finish your three slides
13 very quickly.
14 MR. MUNDIS: If we could then please go to the next slide. This
15 from page 508 of the Serbian version and page 0469-2733 through 2734 in
16 the English version.
17 Q. Can you tell us, Mr. Riedlmayer, what's depicted on these two
19 A. This is another mosque in Zvornik, the town of Zvornik, the
20 Beksuja Dzamija. It's in the Beksuja neighbourhood, which is up the hill
21 from the market. The photograph on the left comes from a publication in
22 the 1980s. It shows a mosque with a traditional wooden minaret.
23 At the right, you can see the site of it. Again, you see a
24 linden tree, and you can see a big pile of garbage and a little bit of
25 the foundations of the mosque.
1 Q. Who took the photograph on the right, and when, please?
2 A. I did, in July of 2002.
3 MR. MUNDIS: Can we go to the next slide, please. This is from
4 page 501 in the Serbian version and pages 0469-2739 through 2740.
5 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, again, can you tell us what is depicted in these
6 two photographs, beginning with the photo on the left?
7 A. This is the oldest mosque in the town of Zvornik, the
8 Zamlaz Mosque, so-called after the neighbourhood it's in. On the
9 photograph on the left, which comes from a publication issued before the
10 war, you can see the mosque. You can see, in particular, that it isn't
11 oriented toward the street because it has to face towards Mecca for
13 What I would call to Your Honours' attention is the building to
14 the right of the mosque, which has characteristically-shaped windows and
15 a striped effect of alternating brick and concrete. If you look at the
16 photograph on the right, which was taken by a Tribunal investigator -- I
17 don't have the record in front of me, but I believe it was 2001. You can
18 see the same building on the right, but you can also see that a block of
19 flats, an apartment building, is being erected on the site where the
20 mosque stood.
21 So if you show the next slide, I can complete this. Oh, go back.
22 Okay. Here, the picture on the right is the one I took in July
23 of 2002, by which time the apartment building had been finished. Going
24 behind the apartment building, I could still see a few Muslim gravestones
25 which, if you knew, indicated that the mosque had once stood there, but
1 otherwise both the mosque and any evidence that it had been there were no
2 longer visible.
3 MR. MUNDIS: And if we could go to the next slide, please. This
4 is from page 475 of the Serbian version and page 0469-2776 of the English
6 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, can you tell us what's depicted on this slide,
7 beginning with the photograph on the left, please?
8 A. This is the mosque in the center of the village of Divic, just
9 south of Zvornik. The photograph on the left was taken just before the
10 war and comes from a pre-war publication. The photograph on the right is
11 one I took in July of 2002, and it shows the Orthodox church that was
12 erected on the site of the demolished mosque. This was also one of the
13 cases brought before the Human Rights Chamber, and the text of its
14 findings is appended to my report.
15 Q. And the final slide comes from page 393 of the Serbian version.
16 The English version of the report is page 0469-2895. Can you tell us,
17 sir, what is depicted in this slide?
18 A. This is a photograph taken by a Reuters press photographer,
19 Danilo Krstanovic, in the spring of 1996. It shows a Bosnian Muslim man
20 kissing the ground when he first returned to his village of Donja Misoca
21 in one of the Sarajevo suburban municipalities. Behind him, you can see
22 what is left of the village mosque. We saw another picture of the same
23 minaret earlier:
24 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honours, I note the time. I don't know if I
25 have any time left. I would like to ask the witness a few questions
1 about the large map which is attached to his report and which is here in
2 the courtroom. We could perhaps take a break, and if I'm allowed a
3 little bit of extra time --
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] How long will it take you to
5 ask those questions about the map?
6 MR. MUNDIS: I would imagine approximately ten minutes to include
7 the amount of time I would need to tender the report and the maps and
8 whatnot, but I would expect I would need about ten more minutes.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, we will have the break
10 now and we will resume in 20 minutes.
11 --- Recess taken at 3.51 p.m.
12 --- On resuming at 4.15 p.m.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Mr. Mundis, you
14 have the floor. All the time used now by you will be added to
15 Mr. Seselj's time.
16 Furthermore, Mr. Seselj, we have considered that two of your
17 questions belonged actually to the cross-examination, so we will deduct
18 two minutes from your time, 120 seconds.
19 MR. MUNDIS:
20 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, turning your attention to the large map that's
21 displayed here in the courtroom, can you tell us, sir, what this map is
22 and who produced it?
23 A. Okay. This, Your Honours, is a map of Bosnia-Herzegovina onto
24 which have been plotted the sites of mosques that are either destroyed,
25 damaged, or intact as of the end of the 1992-1995 war. The map was
1 produced by Mr. Bekir Besic. Mr. Besic was a member of the Council of
2 the Islamic Community of Banja Luka before the war. Since the war, he
3 has been living as a refugee in a third country. He used as a source of
4 information the book published by the Islamic Community, by Mr. Omerdic,
5 which is mentioned in my report. I have checked the plotting of the
6 locations, and it appears to be accurate. And it is a useful graphic
7 representation of the places in which mosques were destroyed or damaged
8 in Bosnia during the war.
9 Q. And, Mr. Riedlmayer, can you tell us to what use, if any, you
10 used this map or consulted this map in producing your report?
11 A. I used it in a number of ways. First of all, it's a very
12 large-scale map, and it assisted me actually in locating some places that
13 were otherwise hard to find. It also helped me look at patterns that
14 allowed me to make certain conclusions about the pattern of destruction,
15 where things were destroyed, where things were not destroyed.
16 Q. And when you say, sir, it helped you look at patterns, what
17 patterns were you able to discern from reliance upon this map?
18 A. Okay. Well, first let me explain the map. The map, I believe,
19 also exists in an electronic version. You may not be able to see it well
20 from a distance, but all the red dots represent destroyed mosques. The
21 green circles, you can ignore. They're just places of large towns. On
22 the original map, it was a lighter green, but somehow in the copying it
23 got rather intense.
24 So the red dots are destroyed mosques. The green squares are
25 intact mosques, and the yellow circles are mosques that had been damaged
1 but not destroyed. And what you can see, really, is from a pattern
2 following the red dots, you can pretty much outline the frontlines and
3 the territory that was held by Serb forces during the war, and the only
4 place where you see intact mosques is in a territory that was under the
5 control of the Bosnian government during the war. So you can essentially
6 draw the borders of the wartime Republika Srpska by connecting the areas
7 that have red dots.
8 Q. And, Mr. Riedlmayer, this map was attached to your report; is
9 that correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And why did you do that?
12 A. Because otherwise you have a scatter shot of disconnected
13 municipalities and disconnected data. I did include GPS readings for my
14 sites, but even if those were put on a map, it would result in a
15 patchwork. This has a benefit of, you know, showing a pattern that
16 extends across the country.
17 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you very much.
18 Your Honours, the Prosecution has no further questions, but we
19 would tender into evidence the report which bears 65 ter number 00 --
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Mundis, hold on. We
21 have noted that in the expert report, a video is mentioned. This video
22 had already been admitted as P346. This video starts at 0059 minutes and
23 ends at 0518 minutes. And the video that's attached to the expert report
24 is seven minutes and 43 seconds' long, whereas Video P346 is four minutes
25 and 21 seconds. Did you ask for this video to be tendered; yes or no?
1 THE INTERPRETER: It's P348, interpreter's correction.
2 MR. MUNDIS: P348, my understanding, the videotape has --
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Video P348 addresses the
4 destruction of a mosque, and it has already been tendered and admitted,
5 but the clip admitted is shorter than the video that is mentioned in the
6 expert's report.
7 MR. MUNDIS: Based on the report that -- well, let me start over.
8 Based on the videotape that's already been admitted, the
9 Prosecution found that there was no independent reason to show the longer
10 segment of that tape here in court today, as a means of saving time.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, very well. So what
12 are you asking for now?
13 MR. MUNDIS: I'm asking, Your Honours, for the admission of the
14 report, which bears 65 ter number 00463, with all of its attachments and
15 annexes, which would include, among other things, the electronic database
16 which has been printed out. We would ask for the electronic version to
17 also go into evidence, because as Mr. Riedlmayer's explained, there are
18 searchable functions in there that might assist the Trial Chamber with
19 respect to the ultimate responsibilities of the Trial Chamber.
20 We would ask for the admission of the PowerPoint slide
21 presentation, which bears 65 ter number 00463A.
22 So we would ask for the admission of the report, all of its
23 annexes, to include this map and the electronic database, and the slide
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. The Trial Chamber
1 will issue its decision after the cross-examination and after having
2 listened to Mr. Seselj's questions and possible objections, and we will
3 render a decision on the admission of this later.
4 Mr. Seselj, you have the floor for two hours and six or seven
5 minutes, I think, minus the two minutes that were deducted. You have the
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, according to my
8 calculations, it's two hours and 16 minutes, but if you say it's less,
9 then it's less.
10 Cross-examination by Mr. Seselj:
11 Q. Anyway, Mr. Riedlmayer, what year were you born in?
12 A. I was born in 1947.
13 Q. And you graduated in 1969 from the Faculty of History; right?
14 You're a history graduate?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. I seem to remember that in the examination-in-chief, you said
17 that your MA thesis was devoted to the history of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Is
18 that correct?
19 A. That's correct.
20 Q. And what was the exact topic of your MA?
21 A. This wasn't an MA thesis. This was my Bachelor thesis, BA
22 thesis, and the topic was: Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Congress of Berlin
23 of 1878.
24 Q. So you're correcting the information you provided during the
25 examination-in-chief, is that it; is that right? It was your BA, right,
1 your graduation thesis.
2 Now, according to this information, it was in 1972 that you
3 received an MA and for Middle Eastern Studies, is that right, or
4 Near Eastern Studies?
5 A. That's right.
6 Q. And what was the topic, what was the exact title of your thesis?
7 A. It was the Ottoman Empire in the early 17th century, the Djelali
8 [phoen] rebellions. It was on Ottoman history.
9 Q. I didn't hear the interpreter correctly. What was it? Djelalija
10 [phoen], I see.
11 Now, you had another MA in 1998, did you, and it was Library and
12 Information Science, an MS in that in 1998; right? And what was the
13 topic of your MA thesis on that occasion?
14 A. I did not write a thesis on that one. I did an informatics
15 project, but it didn't require a thesis.
16 Q. Was that a project which had to do with methodology in
17 information or did it have some specific concrete research, or was it
18 pure methodology, method within information and library science, or some
19 concrete topic?
20 A. It had to do with the construction of text and image databases.
21 Q. Very well. Now, when you testified for the first time before
22 this Tribunal, which was in the Slobodan Milosevic trial, the
23 Prosecutor -- and that was in 2001, was it not?
24 A. In April of 2002.
25 Q. The Prosecutor announced on the occasion that the following year,
1 you would be receiving your PhD, but you still haven't finished your PhD,
2 you still haven't got the title, have you?
3 A. No, that is a mistake. The person who was finishing his PhD and
4 did finish was my co-author, Andrew Herscher. He did finish his PhD, and
5 he's currently teaching at the University of Michigan, Faculty of
6 Architecture. I've been -- I passed all my exams. I've been admitted to
7 doctoral candidacy, but I have not completed a doctoral dissertation.
8 Q. However, that co-author of yours never appeared in the courtroom
9 as an expert; it's only you who have appeared. And when the Prosecutor
10 announced that you would be finishing your PhD the following year, he
11 didn't mean your co-author. So, in fact, the Prosecutor made a mistake
12 on that occasion, right, he got it wrong?
13 A. I do not recall it that way. I believe the Prosecutor referred
14 to Mr. Herscher, my co-author.
15 Q. And what is the topic of your PhD dissertation, doctoral
16 dissertation, that has been announced ?
17 A. Well, I don't have one in progress at this point. I was working
18 on 17th century Ottoman history of the Balkans. I have published several
19 dozen peer-reviewed articles on the topic of Ottoman history, Ottoman
20 manuscripts and Balkan culture. I'm active in academic societies as well
21 as professional associations, but, no, I don't aspire to --
22 Q. All of that is well and fine. I'm just interested in your
23 doctoral dissertation. However, until the commission approves the topic
24 of your dissertation, you do not have the right to call yourself a person
25 who is aspiring for a PhD; right?
1 A. Well, the commission did approve a topic for me. All I'm saying
2 is that I have not completed it. The topic had to do with
3 Ottoman/Persian relations of the 17th century, the period of the long
5 Q. Well, that's what I asked you, but you told me that you didn't
6 have a topic. You were telling me what it was that you were dealing
7 with. Obviously, as for the field of history, you primarily dealt with
8 political history. That is the subject of your Master's degree and your
9 Bachelor's degree, and obviously the dissertation -- the PhD that we've
10 been speaking of. Through your university studies, you have not been
11 trained to deal with what you have been dealing with here, in terms of
12 your expertise for the OTP? You don't really have proper qualifications
13 for that, do you?
14 A. Well, sir, I would counter to that that my university education
15 at this point was more than 35 years ago. For most of that period, about
16 24 years, I've been the director of a documentation centre for Islamic
17 architecture, and that is the reason why I switched to information
18 science, because that is what has assisted me, among other things, in
19 doing my job. And documenting Islamic architecture is precisely what
20 I've been doing as an expert witness here.
21 Q. That would mean that although I'm a lawyer by training, if I were
22 to become head of a public utility company dealing with sewage and
23 waterworks, I could say that I was an expert in water management, sewage
24 systems, the chemical composition of waste waters, et cetera. It's one
25 thing being in management, and it's another thing being an expert in a
1 specific scientific field like, say, the history of art, the history of
2 architecture in a narrower sense, and even more narrowly Islamic
3 architecture. So, right, you don't really have any qualifications for
4 that; am I not right?
5 A. I do not have a degree in Islamic architecture, no, but I have
6 over the past 24 years attended courses, seminars. I have written and
7 published articles on the subject of Islamic architecture, and I assume
8 that if you were to assume a different profession, if you had practiced
9 it for two and a half decades, you would have also acquired some
10 expertise both through doing and through continued education, which is
11 what I did.
12 Q. Yes, conditionally speaking, that is correct, because then you're
13 a half-trained expert. Say if you have a Master's degree in History and
14 if your doctorate is supposed to be in History, and, well, you can go
15 into medicine because you're interested in medicine, you write a few
16 texts in the field of medicine, you cannot really become an expert in
17 medicine. That would mean that you'd be a witch doctor; right? The fact
18 that you are fond of Islamic art does not mean that you're an expert. I
19 am fond of literature, but I'm not an expert in literature, in
20 belles-lettres; right?
21 A. Again, I would respectfully disagree. What you are talking about
22 here is two closely-related fields, they're in the humanities, and a
23 historian and a philologist can read inscriptions who publishes articles
24 on -- in professional journals on the subject which are peer-reviewed,
25 meaning they are passed to experts in the field for checking. Obviously,
1 that is a different story than, you know, aspiring to become a doctor or
2 nuclear engineer. I consider myself very well qualified in the field of
3 Islamic art history, in the field of Ottoman studies, and as a cultural
4 historian I find it a natural extension to deal with the material culture
5 of a particular region. And as an expert in documentation, I know how to
6 gather information, how to systematise it and how to draw certain
7 conclusions from it.
8 Q. But in your expert report, you only asserted yourself as a
9 photographer. You do not have anything more specific on the destroyed
10 cultural monuments, what is characteristic of the style of the monuments
11 destroyed, who were the master builders and so on and so forth. You do
12 not mention that at all here, so we cannot tell what kind of an expert
13 you are on the basis of that. We just see your photographs here, and we
14 see that you're a mediocre photographer who goes on a trip, forgetting
15 his flash, and then cannot take the right kind of pictures because he
16 doesn't have enough light. And also you listened to what casual
17 passersby have to say. So you're a mediocre-level photographer and an
18 expert in listening to occasional stories told by passersby; right?
19 A. Wrong. I would say, first of all, if you look at my expert
20 report, one of the things that I do with respect to every monument is I
21 list sources, I list bibliography, where you can find further on this
22 building in terms of its history, its architectural drawings, pre-war
23 photographs and so forth. What any researcher in the field of humanities
24 does is -- and especially in the field of architectural history, is
25 combine library research with field research. So you take all the
1 published information on a building, you take all the pre-war
2 photographs, you take all the post-war photographs, and then on the basis
3 of that, you draw some conclusions. Without the research, for example,
4 it would be very hard to identify a building that has been badly
5 destroyed. You need to have that kind of information.
6 Q. You stated during your examination-in-chief that you had only a
7 month to work in the field when the OTP gave you a project on the basis
8 of the indictment issued against me, to study the destruction of cultural
9 monuments in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Only a month; right?
10 A. Yes. My July 2002 fieldwork was approximately a month long.
11 However, the writing of the report took many times longer than that
12 precisely because I had to evaluate all the information that I brought
13 back, not only my own photographs but photographs I got from other
14 sources, the published information, and to -- before I could draw any
15 conclusions, I had to feed all of this into a database. I had to derive
16 certain statistical information from this, and only then was I able to
17 write the report. So it took a lot longer than a month.
18 And with respect to the fieldwork, in certain areas like Mostar,
19 like in the suburbs of Sarajevo, I did go out into the field and collect
20 some documentation. On other occasions when I visited Bosnia, which was
21 not on direct commission from the Tribunal, and I incorporated some of
22 that information into the report. I mentioned that, too.
23 Q. During that one month, you did not manage to reach all the
24 locations that you dealt with in the report; right? You dealt with some
25 locations indirectly on the basis of information collected by other
1 people; right?
2 A. Correct.
3 Q. All right. When you were assigned this project, you also got the
4 text of the indictment issued against me; right?
5 A. Actually, not. I got a list of municipalities to cover.
6 Q. And you never received a copy of the text of the indictment
7 issued against me?
8 A. Well, as far as I know, there have been several versions of that.
9 I have seen the most recent version on the Tribunal's web site, of
10 course, but for the purposes of writing the report, the only information
11 that mattered to me was the assignment to include certain municipalities
12 and not others. In fact, if you look closely at the introduction to my
13 report, you will see that the initial assignment had a much more limited
14 number of municipalities, and then later on it got expanded to include a
15 longer list.
16 Q. And did you manage to find out, at least by way of people telling
17 you, that I have been charged with crimes in the Krajina that is now
18 under Croatian occupation?
19 A. Yes, that is public knowledge.
20 Q. Did it ever cross your mind to ask counsel for the Prosecution
21 why your project did not pertain to these areas as well, not only the
22 area of Bosnia-Herzegovina, because over there as well cultural monuments
23 were destroyed, especially religious buildings?
24 A. Well, earlier in the direct examination, I was asked, I believe
25 by you, sir, about this very same question, and the fact is when the
1 Prosecutor first approached me to prepare an expert report, I was asked
2 could I do one for the Croatian municipalities as well. I pointed out
3 that I had not done any fieldwork in Croatia, and thereupon they thought
4 about it and decided that I should limit my report to the municipalities
5 where I had already done fieldwork in Bosnia so that the OTP would not
6 have to pay the expenses of another month in the field.
7 So the only reason I have not covered Croatia is simply the fact
8 that I have not done fieldwork there.
9 Q. Well, one always has to start with fieldwork. Wasn't it
10 interesting enough to you when you realised that the indictment involved
11 the area of the republic of the Serb Krajina, occupied by Croatia; did
12 that not spark your interest in terms of investigating and doing some
13 research, obtaining information, and comparing this to the situation in
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina and in Kosovo Metohija, where you also did some
15 research; right?
16 A. Well, it was not for any lack of interest on my part, sir. It
17 was entirely a question of what the assignment I was given. I was not in
18 a position to dictate the terms of that.
19 Q. Were you asked to include only non-Serb cultural monuments or,
20 rather, Muslim and Croatian ones, or was this your personal selection?
21 A. These were the terms of the mission, that I was to report on the
22 cultural monuments of the non-Serb communities. However, in the case of
23 my report on Kosovo, I included the cultural monuments of all
24 communities, including the Serb community. The difference was that in
25 the case of the Kosovo mission, the OTP did not commission that, they did
1 not pay the expenses for it. I got a grant from a foundation to go to
2 Kosovo four months after the war and do fieldwork there. And after the
3 report was already finished is when I presented it to the OTP for their
4 consideration, and it was only after that, after my testimony on Kosovo,
5 that the OTP decided to commission me to do fieldwork in Bosnia. So it's
6 not that I'm not interested in Serb cultural property. It's simply the
7 terms of the mission.
8 As you know better than anyone, Kosovo is a much smaller place
9 than Bosnia, and one can cover more territory there in a relatively short
10 amount of time than one could in a country that is several times larger.
11 Q. But as a person who aspires to work as a scholar, although it
12 doesn't sound right that someone who is about to turn 61 is about to get
13 his PhD, that would really be a disgrace in the area where I come from,
14 but perhaps it's different in your milieu, wouldn't it be professionally
15 and morally unacceptable to study and research the crimes of one side in
16 a post-war situation and not the other side in that war conflict? From a
17 moral and professional point of view, can a scholar allow himself to do
19 A. Well, it's interesting that you should bring that up, because
20 actually my interest in the destruction of cultural property in the
21 Balkans during the wars of the 1990s long predates my association with
22 the Tribunal, and I have always been interested in all forms of cultural
23 property. The difference in this case was that for the report that I
24 submitted to the Tribunal, I had to adhere to the terms of the mission.
25 However, as you point out yourself, if one is a scholar, one has a
1 certain amount of intellectual curiosity and wants to see the whole
2 picture, which is in fact what I tried to do even during my fieldwork.
3 When I set out to do my fieldwork in Bosnia, one of the starting
4 points, given that this fieldwork took place in 2002, already a number of
5 years after the war, was to gather all information that was put out by
6 various bodies, both secular and religious, about what had been destroyed
7 during the war. Amongst that information, for my own purposes - it
8 wasn't included in the report - I took great care to look at the
9 information published by the Serbian Orthodox Church. They went through
10 three editions of a book called: "Spiritual Genocide,"
11 "Duhovni Genocid," and I looked at that information. And when I was in
12 the field, whenever it was possible to do so without making a great
13 detour, I looked at the state of the Serbian Orthodox buildings about
14 which claims of damage had been made. If you're interested, I can run
15 down it very easily. It's 11 municipalities --
16 Q. But I'm not interested. Please. You are using my time for
17 nothing, in vain. I'm not interested in what you did. I'm interested in
18 what your expert report contains. What you did, in terms of your own
19 interest, that's your own private affair.
20 You compiled a highly tendentious and one-sided expert report,
21 and an uninformed observer could conclude that in this war, Serbs were
22 war criminals who were systematically destroying Croatian and Muslim
23 cultural monuments and religious buildings, on the one hand, and on the
24 other hand there is no information to the effect that the same was done
25 by Muslims and Croats; isn't that right? An objective, impartial person
1 reading your expert report would have to come to that conclusion, that
2 it's only Serbs who are criminals here, destroying churches and mosques?
3 A. Well, if you had let me finish my previous answer, I could have
4 told you that in the 11 municipalities which I surveyed, there were a
5 total of 14 Serbian Orthodox buildings, 13 churches plus one Episcopal
6 palace, that had been either damaged or destroyed. Out of those 14
7 monuments, and that's the total, I visited nine of them and documented
8 them for myself. In those same municipalities, you had 101 mosques and
9 27 Catholic churches that were damaged, and so that does allow one to
10 draw certain conclusions. Unfortunately, I was not able to include this
11 information in my report because that's not what I was asked to do.
12 Q. You must know that many Serbian authors, not only
13 Professor Slobodan Mileusnic, who dealt with this the most, but also
14 Sasa Miric, Drago Jovanovic, Gordana Bundalo and Miloskova Darevic
15 [phoen], then Milivoje Ivanisevic, and many others, made inventories and
16 documented destroyed Serbian churches, cemeteries, parish homes, cultural
17 monuments and so on, and the figure they reached was 700. Some of these
18 were destroyed totally and some were damaged.
19 A. Okay. According to the book "Duhovni Genocid," which is
20 Professor Mileusnic's work, the total number he mentions for destroyed
21 churches combined in Bosnia and Croatia is much less than that. I think
22 it was 212. And we were talking -- when I mentioned 14, it referred
23 specifically to the 11 indictments -- municipalities. There were areas
24 in Bosnia where the Serbian cultural property suffered more than in
25 others. Those were not included in this report.
1 Q. You mention only the churches that were totally destroyed.
2 However, according to the official information of the Serbian Orthodox
3 Church, supplied to me by the OTP, and the number here is Y0039108, it
4 says that it's only in five diocese in the territory of Croatia that 270
5 Serb religious facilities were destroyed. The OTP can find it under this
6 number, because they're the ones who provided me with this document. So
7 your information is not correct.
8 You do like to turn things the other way around. If
9 Professor Mileusnic says 270 destroyed, for you that's a total number,
10 and on the other hand you make an inventory of destroyed/damaged
11 buildings and you lump it all together. That's not right for a serious
13 However, tell me, if you were tasked with submitting a report on
14 destroyed cultural heritage, why did you not include all the buildings of
15 cultural heritage, the real cultural monuments, rather, what is
16 UNESCO-protected heritage or under state protection or local protection
17 as an important local monument? You dealt with all sorts of monuments,
18 Roman Catholic and Muslim, but not any Serbian ones, because not
19 everything can be cultural heritage, not every church, not every mosque
20 can be cultural heritage; right?
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Mundis.
22 MR. MUNDIS: Objection. This is irrelevant. It goes to a
23 tu quoque defence which the Chamber is well aware is improper.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, the question you
25 have just put to the witness, you have put it to him at least two or
1 three times. It was a question I put to him right at the beginning. He
2 answered the question. He explained to you why he prepared the report in
3 the way he had. He addressed the destruction of the mosques and of the
4 churches, because that is what the Prosecution had asked him to do.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I was wondering how
6 you're going to calculate the Prosecutor's time that he spends on putting
7 the wrong kind of questions, and now you're lecturing me on what happened
8 in the examination-in-chief. I have the right to raise all the questions
9 that were dealt with in the examination-in-chief. I did not participate.
10 The Prosecution did, the Judges did; I didn't.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, you're quite right.
12 But just one thing. Put a question to him -- you're putting a question
13 to him which he has answered already, and he's answering in the same way.
14 You put your question three times, and he has answered the same way every
15 time. I don't mind if he answers differently with regard to your
16 question; fine. I don't have the feeling that the witness was going this
17 way and that he would answer the questions differently.
18 However, as far as relevance is concerned, you know as well as I
19 do, Mr. Mundis, that tu quoque is not something which is acknowledged by
20 this Tribunal, but if you would like to provide the context and say that
21 it wasn't only Roman Catholic churches and Muslim mosques that were
22 destroyed, when at some point the witness said he had prepared things for
23 himself because he was particularly interested in this, you cut him short
24 and told him that you weren't interested. So I'm trying to understand
25 what point you're trying to make.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, as soon as you and
2 your colleagues of the Trial Chamber establish that this Prosecution
3 expert got things confused and was given the task of dealing with the
4 destruction of cultural heritage in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and then he
5 turned it the other way around, he turned it into a report on the
6 destruction of Islamic and Roman Catholic buildings, I thought that at
7 that moment you would send him out of the courtroom and reject his
8 report, but you didn't do that. If cultural heritage -- the destruction
9 of cultural heritage was his task, then he had to deal with the entire
10 cultural heritage of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Serbian Orthodox cultural
11 heritage there is hundreds of years older than Islamic heritage there.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, please answer this
13 question. The title of your paper is: "Destruction of Cultural Heritage
14 in Bosnia-Herzegovina." On the basis of this title, one could believe
15 that the Orthodox churches would be part of this paper, but it seems that
16 you restricted your survey to the mosques and the Roman Catholic
18 Can you explain this to us, Witness? Well, you're an expert, I
19 know. Normally speaking, in my country, and in your country it must be
20 the same - in this Tribunal it's somewhat more complicated - when one of
21 the parties asks to have an expert report, then a letter is sent. The
22 party sends this letter, and the assignment is clearly spelled out.
23 Unfortunately, in your report, your assignment has not been mentioned.
24 There is no document in support of this.
25 When you testified before the ICJ at the request of
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina in the litigation between Serbia and Montenegro and
2 Bosnia-Herzegovina, I assume that someone must have sent you a letter,
3 the government of Bosnia-Herzegovina sent you a letter, saying that they
4 wished you to testify as an expert to discuss such-and-such a point.
5 What I'm interested in is this, because I've put the question to you
6 already and you've answered already, but Mr. Seselj is not satisfied with
7 your answer: What exactly were you asked to do as part of your expert
8 survey? Was it to study destruction on a massive scale or were you to
9 focus only on the Croatian churches and on the mosques?
10 THE WITNESS: Okay. Your Honour, first of all, at the peril of
11 pointing out the obvious, the title of my report is not limited to the
12 title proper. It is also subtitled, which gives the limitations of its
13 scope, both in terms of geography and time its limitation to non-Serb
14 cultural heritage.
15 As for the terms of my assignment, they are described in detail
16 in my expert report, in the introduction, starting from paragraph 7,
17 going through paragraph 11; that is, on pages 0469-3672, 73 and 74. I
18 unfortunately did not include the letter I did receive from the Office of
19 the Prosecutor in each of these cases, asking me to do it, but I
20 summarised the contents, and I'm sure that the OTP can unearth from its
21 files the corresponding documents setting the terms of my mission.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, I understand, sir, but I'm
23 not levelling any criticism at you. But I'm putting myself in the shoes
24 of someone who goes on the internet and follows these proceedings and
25 say, "Well, there's an expert in the courtroom. He's been asked to
1 report on the destruction of cultural heritage in Bosnia-Herzegovina."
2 This is what the person sees. The person doesn't see the subtitle, which
3 is written in small print. And the person listens and says, "Well, there
4 are only churches and mosques that were destroyed," and therefore infers
5 that nothing happened to Orthodox churches. You see, this is what the
6 issue is all about.
7 The title should have been: "Destruction of Cultural Heritage in
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina," i.e., the mosques and the Roman Catholic churches.
9 Like that, everything would have been quite clear, what the field of your
10 survey was. But this is your title, which is -- and you explain that in
11 paragraph 7, you explain what you have been asked to do. But in
12 paragraph 7, you mention the Milosevic trial. We have not been seized of
13 this matter, so this complicates the issue even further.
14 Well, you have answered some of the questions.
15 Mr. Seselj, you have the floor, and please proceed.
16 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, in 1995 you testified before the US Congress,
18 before the Congress Committee on Security and Cooperation in Europe; is
19 that so?
20 A. That is correct.
21 Q. And on that occasion, you testified about the destruction of the
22 Muslim and Roman Catholic religious buildings in Bosnia-Herzegovina; is
23 that correct?
24 A. That is correct.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judges, I pose the question to you:
1 Why did I not receive transcripts of this testimony by Mr. Riedlmayer
2 before the US Congress from the Prosecution, although the Prosecution was
3 aware of that? I cannot contact the Prosecution directly. I can only
4 contact the Prosecution via the Trial Chamber.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Mundis, now, the expert
6 purportedly testified before the US Congress on the same topic, and
7 Mr. Seselj is saying why was he not given his testimony?
8 MR. MUNDIS: Mr. President, we're checking our records right now.
9 Of course, the first question in any such inquiry is whether it's in our
10 possession. If we don't have it, then we don't have it to disclose.
11 Certainly, Congressional testimony is in the public domain and could be
12 found by anyone who was looking for it. But I am checking our records
13 right now to see if, in fact, we do have the transcripts of that
14 testimony and, if we do have it, whether or not it was disclosed. So
15 perhaps if we move on, I'll be in a position to address that issue a
16 little bit later.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please proceed, Mr. Seselj.
18 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, I assume that as an historian, following the
20 political developments in the Balkans, the war, and in particular the
21 situation in Bosnia-Herzegovina, have often encountered the political
22 activities of the Serbian Radical Party and my political statements,
23 speeches and so on, I am not a nobody to you. I'm not somebody of whom
24 you had heard for the first time when you were given the task; is that
25 so? I assume that it is so.
1 A. No, I have heard of you, and I very well remember, during my
2 fieldwork in Bosnia in 2002, there was a gentleman on the street who was
3 handing out the glossy magazine of the Bosnian branch of your party, and
4 in the back it included advertisements for your books. I can't say that
5 I have read all of them, but I have read some of the things that you've
7 Q. Well, the Prosecution and the Trial Chamber wouldn't be able to
8 read everything even if they did nothing but read until the rest of --
9 for the rest of their lives, not because I have a low opinion of their
10 abilities but because of the huge volume of my writings. But I would
11 like to know something.
12 Have you ever heard of me or any other official of the
13 Serbian Radical Party advocating the destruction of Muslim or
14 Roman Catholic religious buildings, of us inciting or justifying such
15 destruction? Have you ever heard anything of the sort?
16 A. That was not my assignment, to look for that kind of information.
17 Q. Do you know that, first of all, a priest of the Serb Orthodox
18 Church, Patriarch Pavle, has on several occasions made public calls
19 against the destruction of the religious buildings belonging to other
20 faiths; Muslim, Roman Catholics and so on? Are you aware of that?
21 A. I'm aware of it.
22 Q. Do you know that the president of the Republika Srpska,
23 Dr. Radovan Karadzic, issued an order in 1993 to the effect that the
24 police are ordered to strictly protect all the religious buildings in the
25 territory of Republika Srpska?
1 A. I'm aware of that particular order. In fact, in
2 cross-examination in the Milosevic case, he produced that very order, and
3 I read it in court. It was also stated in court at that time, however,
4 that after that order was issued, the destruction continued unabated.
5 And, for example, in 1993, in Banja Luka, 13 more mosques were destroyed
6 after that order was issued, in a town that saw no fighting, which was
7 under curfew at night and which was fully under the control of
8 Dr. Karadzic's police and military. And so I don't know what actual
9 effect such an order had.
10 Q. Well, that's the gist of it. The effectiveness of an order, if,
11 on the one hand, you never heard of any Serb political or religious
12 official advocating the destruction of religious buildings belonging to
13 other fates, and if it in fact happened in practice, it means that their
14 authority was not strong enough to prevent it. Is that the only -- is
15 that not the only logical conclusion we can draw, or that there are
16 hypocrites who publicly order the prevention of the destruction and at
17 the same time secretly condones and advocates such destruction, but it is
18 simply unthinkable that something like that would happen? Do you agree
19 with what I'm saying, but please be very brief in your answer, because I
20 want us to go on to address the very essence of the case.
21 A. Gladly. I think it's entirely possible for people to say one
22 thing in public and to do something quite contrary to that behind the --
23 Q. Well, do you have any evidence for any particular case in which
24 somebody said something about churches and mosques in public and then did
25 the opposite behind the scenes; is there any evidence?
1 A. I just mentioned the fact that after that order signed by
2 Radovan Karadzic was issued, I believe it was May of 1993, the
3 destruction of mosques and Catholic churches continued unabated right to
4 the end of the war. I can, if you like, cite specifics.
5 Q. But as an historian, I am aware of this destruction. You don't
6 have to point that out to me. I am aware that Orthodox, Roman Catholic
7 churches and Muslim mosques were destroyed. This is not controversial.
8 There was a detail that was controversial, as far as I was concerned, in
9 your report that had to do with manipulating photographs. But as an
10 historian, you have to know that in 1993 there was an attempted coup,
11 military coup against Radovan Karadzic in Banja Luka itself. Banja Luka
12 itself was blocked. It no longer obeyed the central authorities in Pale.
13 I don't know if you recall this coup, attempted coup. It was in
14 September of 1993.
15 A. I have a vague recall of it, yes. But as I recall, he then
16 managed to regain control of Banja Luka, and the destruction of mosques
17 happened before the coup and after the coup. And by the end of 1993,
18 there was not a single mosque left standing in Banja Luka out of 16
19 before the war.
20 Q. When you embarked on this task, as a scientist, as a scholar, you
21 had to put in place certain systematisation. Your methodology had to be
22 based on certain rules. So in the systemisation, or typology, you had to
23 make a clear distinction between the religious buildings that are on the
24 frontlines that could have been destroyed in the combat activities
25 launched by one or other side, and religious buildings that were
1 destroyed not in any kind of fighting deep behind the frontlines; that
2 would be the basic methodological distinction to be drawn in your task?
3 A. If you've read my report, you will see that I addressed this from
4 several aspects. First of all, looking at context, which I addressed in
5 some detail a little while ago, were buildings around the churches or
6 mosques destroyed to the same degree that the churches or mosques were.
7 That gives you some idea.
8 Secondly, I did look at the context in terms of whether there was
9 fighting going on at the time of destruction, and there are many places,
10 such as Nevesinje, Banja Luka, Bosanski Samac, Bijeljina, where the
11 destruction happened after the Serb authorities had full control of the
12 situation. For example, in Bijeljina, the main destruction happened in
13 the spring of 1993, which was almost the year after there had been no
14 fighting in Bijeljina.
15 So, yes, it's addressed in some in detail in my report. And it's
16 also clear from my report that the only buildings that escaped damage, to
17 a large degree, meaning that were only lightly damaged, were buildings
18 that were either on the frontlines and far enough behind the frontlines
19 so they weren't badly hit, or a limited number of cases of buildings
20 which hadn't been officially registered as active mosques or churches
21 which were in Serb-held territory but for some reason did not make it
22 onto the list of things to be gotten rid of. It's the only way I can
23 explain a situation like in Zvornik, where you had an inaccessible mosque
24 on a cliff top in Kuslat being destroyed, whereas a mosque that was only
25 a few feet from the highway was untouched, and my contention is that this
1 says something about the spontaneous versus planned nature of the
3 Q. As an historian, for instance, when you came to Nevesinje, you
4 ascertained that the mosques in Nevesinje had all been destroyed, despite
5 the fact that there was no fighting there. You had to have learned the
6 basic facts as to when it happened, who was in power in the municipality
7 at the time and who might be responsible. Had you done that, you would
8 have learned that at that time the municipality was governed by
9 Vuk Draskovic's party, the Serb Restoration Movement. That is one of the
10 two municipalities in Republika Srpska ruled by the Serbian Restoration
11 Movement. The other one was Sipovo up there in Bosnia. Are you aware of
13 A. It was not my responsibility to establish which particular party
14 may have been responsible for the destruction. My focus was on
15 documenting the destruction and, to the extent possible, establishing
16 when it occurred.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, let's be clear. You
18 are right to say this. I don't contest it.
19 There were two things. You're an expert. You go on-site, you
20 make pictures. You're capable -- you don't need to make deep studies to
21 make a difference between a Catholic church or an Orthodox church or a
22 mosque. Therefore, you could have, first of all, had a series of
23 photographs before the conflict and then after the conflict, and draw
24 conclusions, so many mosques, so many churches were destroyed, seriously
25 or not at all. But when one looks at your report, one sees that you have
1 interrogated some people to help you, and this is understandable. These
2 persons gave you some information, some hearsay information, which you
3 put in your own report. Why not? That's what you've done. I have
4 nothing to say against that.
5 But coming back to the example given by Mr. Seselj for Nevesinje
6 as a place where there were no fights, but mosques were destroyed, and
7 there I start wondering why you did not go to the town hall or the
8 municipality building to ask where -- or perhaps at the police station,
9 to ask how is it possible that in a place where there was no fight,
10 mosques have been completely razed to the ground? Why didn't you do this
11 so that some people might have told you, yes, the municipality is held by
12 X or Y, it's a complicated matter? This may seem a bit strange, odd.
13 You have an answer in particular in places where there was no fighting,
14 so if there was no fighting in those places, a simple mind could see two
15 possible causes; either people who came from elsewhere in the framework
16 of a programmed operation with a big means, because as you told us, there
17 were explosives used, and that could be one cause, or a second cause, the
18 people of the municipality themselves may have decided to raze the mosque
19 to the ground, or the Catholic Church.
20 So why for some do you gather information about this or that
21 specific element and in other places you don't do anything about it?
22 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, my purpose in getting any kind of
23 statements revolved around the issue of when something was destroyed.
24 If, in the process of me asking that question, the informant provided
25 other information, I put it down. But as you note yourself, I am not
1 someone who is empowered to depose people, to collect sworn statements or
2 anything of the sort, and that certainly was not my assignment for this
3 mission. My mission was to document the destruction and to find out when
4 it happened. I tried to make sure that the buildings I saw destroyed
5 hadn't been destroyed before or after the war, and if they were destroyed
6 during the war, I tried, to the best of my ability, to cross-check any
7 information provided to me from multiple independent sources. Of course,
8 these were not always available, but when they are, I list them in my
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] While you were speaking, I had
11 a look out of curiosity on paragraph 52 of your report. You note this
12 monastery, this Franciscan monastery with 60.000 books destroyed, and now
13 I see you speak of Serb troops, and then you describe this. This is very
14 strange, very odd. Here, we've got a lot of details, and in other cases
15 none. So did you actually -- were you aware of that, is it possible that
16 in certain cases you were aware of things you could have done and which
17 you didn't do?
18 THE WITNESS: My mission mentioned not only places of worship but
19 also archives and libraries, and the only way I could get information on
20 archives and libraries was by, as in this case, consulting the librarian
21 of the institution. I would think that he would be in the best position
22 to provide firsthand information on what was in the library and what he
23 knew about its destruction. This was the kind of approach that I could
24 only take under special circumstances such as this. In other -- but I
25 treated it much like I treated other cases. I didn't just take his word
1 for it. I looked up all published information on the incident and on the
2 library, and I included that in my report.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
4 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, when you were given the assignment from the
6 Prosecutor to compile an expert report within the frameworks of the legal
7 proceedings against me, the trial against me, did you at that time have
8 any prejudices against me? Did you consider that I was some infamous
9 leader of paramilitaries, somebody engaged in ethnic cleansing and things
10 like that? Did you consider me anything like that, did you have that
11 view of me, that prejudice against me?
12 A. No, I did not. Frankly, the political aspects of it are not of
13 great interest to me. My specialty is what this report addresses, and I
14 would figure that, you know, other people would have the job of assessing
15 whatever political aspects there were. I'm not a political scientist,
16 and generally speaking, as a historian, I like to look at things which
17 are far enough back in time that the dust has settled.
18 So as far as you personally are concerned, I reserve judgement.
19 Q. I very much appreciate the fact that you presented views about me
20 in such an honest way and that you reserve judgement and had no
21 prejudices, but we come to a key point here where I'm catching you out in
22 lies, Mr. Riedlmayer.
23 May we have document number 1 placed on the overhead projector,
25 You say you did not consider that I was the leader of notorious
1 paramilitary organisations and someone who is engaged in ethnic
2 cleansing, whereas I have a text of yours here dated the 22nd of
3 December, 2004. It is your text on crimes in Brisevo, in Prijedor
4 Municipality. Do you remember that article of yours? And look at the
5 portion I've marked. And this is what you say here. You say that in a
6 destroyed Roman Catholic church, my name was written up in Cyrillic, it
7 said "Seselj," and then you said I was the leader of the Serbian Radical
8 Party and of its notorious paramilitary organisation or militia now
9 awaiting trial in The Hague. That's what you wrote at the time, whereas
10 you say that you had no prejudice against me.
11 So here we have your opinions of me before you received your
12 project and assignment, and then -- just a moment, please, just wait.
13 Towards the end of the text, you go on to say, it is line 5 from the
14 bottom, that the Bosnian Serb Army and Seselj's paramilitaries cleansed
15 at enormous human cost this place Brisevo. That's what you wrote, is it
16 not? That's your text; right? Just "yes" or "no," please.
17 A. I would not say "yes" or "no." I would simply say that the first
18 part, that you're the head of the Radical Party and that the
19 Radical Party has a paramilitary organisation, is simply a statement of
20 fact. It's not prejudicial.
21 The last part there about the cleansing of Brisevo, at that point
22 there had been already testimony about what happened at Brisevo, and, you
23 know, I did include the fact that Brisevo was cleansed by paramilitaries.
24 But I would also note that this is an informal e-mail message I sent to
25 someone, and someone posted it on the web site. It's not something that
1 is a sworn statement or part of my report. And as you, yourself, points
2 out -- point out, this occurred before I was commissioned for my report.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, precisely the
4 problem is there, there is the problem.
5 Witness, before you were asked to draft your report, which I
6 remind you that the expert is unbiased, you draft a text, 22 December
7 2004, in which, without adding too many niceties, you say the
8 paramilitaries -- you mention the paramilitaries of Mr. Seselj, the
9 cleaning of Brisevo, and anybody who reads this text can see that the
10 person responsible is Mr. Seselj, and that is -- in fact, you add,
11 "awaiting trial in The Hague," so you indicate there is a case -- a
12 lawsuit in The Hague, and after that you accept to become an expert.
13 Can't you see any problem in this?
14 THE WITNESS: Well, sir, I would -- Your Honour, I would urge you
15 to look at my report, where I do not assign any responsibility to either
16 Mr. Seselj or to his followers. The report is unbiased in terms of it
17 deals with facts, presents those facts to the best of my ability to do so
18 accurately, and draws conclusions which emerge from the facts and not
19 from any preconceived notion.
20 The fact is that in terms of what I did for the report, I think
21 there is nothing in there that can be challenged as prejudicial on its
22 face. You know, consider the function that I was performing when I did
23 the report versus this particular item.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In the text of 2004, what
25 allows you to say that Seselj's paramilitaries cleansed or cleaned --
1 what did you base yourself to reach such conclusions?
2 THE WITNESS: Various materials. Again, this is not a formal
3 conclusion, it's an informal text, but it also emerges from having read
4 reports on what happened in Brisevo. Again, it's not a legal document in
5 the sense that I footnoted anything or, you know, put in elaborate
6 sources. What suggested to me to include that phrase is the information
7 in reports on the destruction of Brisevo and the fact that there were
8 graffiti inside the destroyed church.
9 That's all I can say.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
11 Mr. Seselj.
12 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, now that I've caught you out in a lie, I'm going
14 to provide you with a piece of information first and then ask you your
15 opinion about it.
16 The Brisevo case was dealt with in the judgement of
17 Radoslav Brdjanin, the first-instance judgement, in paragraphs 411 and
18 412. I hope that the Registry can find that and have it up on our
19 screens. I have the translation into Serbian, but may we have
20 paragraphs 411 and 412, where the Brisevo case is described, and no
21 mention is made of the Serbian Radical Party at all or Seselj's men
22 either, not a single word about any of that. So why do you think that
23 is? Paragraph 411 and 412 of the judgement.
24 A. Please refresh my memory. When was the Brdjanin judgement
1 Q. Well, four or five years ago, as far as I remember. I'm not
2 quite sure of the exact date. Let's say that it was about four years
3 ago. Well, the OTP must know that. No, it's the 1st of September, 2004.
4 It says there. That's the judgement. It's the judgement of the
5 Chamber -- Trial Chamber of 2004, and the paragraphs are 411 and 412.
6 Have you got that, Judges?
7 And you can see that no mention is made there of either Seselj's
8 men or the volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, the Registrar
10 promised that we would see 411 and 412 on the screen, so we're just
11 waiting for that.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Is that going to be outside my time
13 available, if we're waiting, or shall I carry on while you're waiting for
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, let's proceed.
16 Please proceed.
17 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
18 Q. While you were in Brisevo, you took four photographs, do you
19 remember that, and you published them on the internet? One photograph
20 shows the whole church. The second one is from a distance, where you can
21 see the destroyed roof of the church, and a closer-up image of the
22 destroyed church. And the last photograph is inside the perimeter of the
24 Can we place that on the overhead projector?
25 And nowhere is this graffiti where it says "Seselj." Why didn't
1 you take a photograph of that? That would have been a good thing to see.
2 You see that the lighting inside the church was fine. It had no
3 roof, so that meant that the lighting is fine. So if you take the roof
4 off a house, you get very good light, so why didn't you do that? Is that
5 your photograph?
6 A. It is not my photograph. That particular photograph is from the
7 Sivko Merica's [phoen] book, and you can see him in the church there. I
8 do have photographs of the interior of the church and I do have a
9 photograph of the graffiti, but I did not post them on the web site. In
10 fact, I didn't post this web site at all. I sent information to someone
11 at Haverford College, who then posted it.
12 Q. I see. Very well, Mr. Riedlmayer. Did you write at one time
13 that the Serb nationalists in Republika Srpska enacted some racial laws
14 against the mixing of genes, according to which every non-Serb who would
15 marry a Serb woman or who had sexual relations with her would be deemed
16 to have committed a crime?
17 A. I remember writing that based on published information in 1993.
18 As you can see, that particular item is dated, I believe, the summer of
19 1993. The war was still going on, and there were reports coming in that,
20 for example, non-Serbs were made to fly white flags on their houses, to
21 wear special armbands, and this was among the things that was being
22 reported in the press at the time. This was while the war was still in
23 progress. At that point, I think Biljana Plavsic had yet to make her
24 famous statement about the degenerate genes of Bosnian Muslims.
25 Q. Let's leave Biljana Plavsic alone. She's a collaborator of
1 The Hague Tribunal, as she did work for them, and dirty work for the
2 Western powers in Republika Srpska. But let's look at this text, and it
3 is document number 3.
4 First of all, let's see the title page so that we can see the
5 heading. It's a brief history of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and then turn to
6 page 3 straight away, page 3. And here you speak of the persecution of
7 Muslims, Croats and even Gypsies and Jews in Banja Luka and other
8 occupied Bosnian towns. So who occupied those Bosnian towns, I ask you,
9 Mr. Riedlmayer?
10 A. The Bosnian Serb Army occupied them.
11 Q. Did the Serbs occupy themselves, then? In Banja Luka, they were
12 a considerable majority in town and in the surrounding villages. Did
13 they occupy themselves, the Serbs?
14 A. No, the Serb nationalist parties in Banja Luka took power by a
15 coup on the eve of the war in Banja Luka, which is why Banja Luka saw no
17 Q. Well, didn't a coup take place in Sarajevo, when the Muslims and
18 the Croats, in a one-sided manner, in spite of Serb opposition,
19 proclaimed unilaterally the independence of Bosnia-Herzegovina? Do you
20 realise that without the Serb people, no one had the right to declare
21 independence for Bosnia-Herzegovina? As a historian, you should know
22 that the Serbs were a constituent people of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
23 A. I believe that this is taking us outside of the topic here, but
24 I can answer if you like. To the best of my understanding, what happened
25 in 1992 was a vote by the Bosnian parliament, and the Bosnian parliament
1 declared independence. And this independence was then recognised by
2 foreign countries, and Bosnia was admitted into the United Nations.
3 I'm not a constitutional scholar. I cannot tell you whether or
4 not this was in accordance with the constitution of the time.
5 Q. Did you find out later that there were no Serb laws against the
6 mixing of genes and that it was never proclaimed that every Serb who
7 would have had sex with a non-Serb woman or married a non-Serb woman was
8 not a crime? Did you realise that later?
9 A. Yes. I know now that certain things have been substantiated,
10 such as the requirement to wear special armbands or mark your houses, and
11 certain other things which were mentioned in the press during the war did
12 not pan out. This particular text, if you page to the very end, I
13 believe, is dated June of 1993 and has not been amended ever since.
14 Well, this doesn't -- oh, yes, here. The summer of 1993.
15 Q. You've lied once again, that non-Serbs had to wear white
16 armbands. And when you realised that what you stated was not true, why
17 didn't you write a new text? Why didn't you apologise to the
18 intellectual public, saying, "I made a mistake at such-and-such a time.
19 It's not true that there were racist laws or, rather, laws against
20 misogynation;" why didn't you do that?
21 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honours, again Mr. Seselj can't just simply
22 accuse the witness of lying. He's done that several times. It's
23 improper, and we object to that.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. Mr. Seselj, this question
25 about lying or false testimony, a person may in good faith say certain
1 things which are untrue. It doesn't mean that he had the intention to
2 lie or to deceive anybody. This is the difficult point.
3 When you say that, "You are now bearing false testimony and you
4 are saying things which are untrue," first of all, you have to prove it.
5 And even if you have proved it, one has to say that this was done
6 deliberately, willfully, with an intention to deceive, because in good
7 faith one can be mistaken. I could say that I see 25 armchairs in the
8 room, and in fact there were not 25 but only 20, and someone could say
9 that I made a false statement. While in good faith I thought there were
10 20, there might have been 24, that's the problem. So the Prosecution
12 Mr. Mundis.
13 MR. MUNDIS: Also, Your Honours, I do note on page 76, lines 6
14 through 9, I didn't want to interrupt Mr. Seselj, but we do also object
15 to him characterizing Biljana Plavsic as a collaborator. That is also
16 inappropriate, and of course the use of the term "collaborator" can be
17 interpreted in a number of different ways. We do object also to that
18 characterization of Mrs. Plavsic.
19 And, again, just one other issue, if I could before the break,
20 Your Honours. I do have the Congressional testimony of Mr. Riedlmayer,
21 which I'm prepared to re-disclose to Mr. Seselj, but I do indicate that
22 the -- we did have Mr. Riedlmayer's testimony to the US Congress
23 translated into Serbian, and that was disclosed to Mr. Seselj on
24 April 2nd, 2008, under disclosure receipt 296. In the event he doesn't
25 have that, I do have an extra copy, both of the receipt and of that
1 transcript here in the courtroom, which I can give him for his possible
2 review and use during the break.
3 So perhaps if the usher could assist me in re-disclosing this.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have never received this before.
5 This is the first time I have it in my hands. And the fact that you have
6 some kind of a certificate containing a large number of documents, I
7 really cannot check each and every time whether these piles of documents
8 are all there. I mean, I receive them in good faith, but I cannot check
9 each and every document.
10 However, this is not an ordinary citizen. This is not a person
11 who may misspeak, who may make a mistake. This is a Prosecution exhibit.
12 He has a double Master's degree, and when he says that Serbs had laws
13 against the mixing of genes, then he has to have proof for that, because
14 he has scientific aspirations. If he writes all of this without any
15 proof and then he ultimately admits that it's not true, and if he does
16 not then issue a denial himself, then he is a liar. There is no other
17 word to use in connection with that.
18 When I catch someone out this way, a witness, I have the right to
19 say, in cross-examination, that he is a liar. And this is confirmed by
20 case law and jurisprudence, and you know that.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, when you write that,
22 that there were racial laws, what did you base yourself on to write this?
23 Did you see any evidence? What made it possible for you to write this?
24 THE WITNESS: This was written in 1993, at a time when there was
25 very little information in English available on the conflict in Bosnia
1 and its background. Somebody, a layman, asked me to write a little
2 backgrounder, which I did, and it got posted on the web. This was 15
3 years ago. At that time, I had not -- the Tribunal didn't exist, the war
4 was still going on, and I had yet to go to Bosnia. Since then, I have
5 learned a great deal, and I would probably be much more circumspect in
6 what I might write.
7 The fact is it was written in an informal circumstance during the
8 war and for a very non-specialised audience. It was not the kind of
9 publication that one formally retracts or amends.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, but just this is it: If
11 you were aiming at a non-specialised audience, this is all the more the
12 reason to be extremely careful when it comes to your scientific approach.
13 If you're saying things that are more or less true towards experts, they
14 will right away be able to make the difference; but if you're talking to
15 a non-scientific audience, the farmer in Arkansas, you know, who has
16 internet and through the web, since you're an authority in your own
17 country, given your position, this farmer could read, "Oh, this person
18 says there are racial laws," well, and who knows, you know, he would take
19 it at face value. You see my point. This can be very dangerous, you
20 know, when you say things that are only half truths.
21 Do you understand this now, with the hindsight?
22 THE WITNESS: I do, sir, but also I would point out that I had to
23 rely, during the war, on information that was publicly available then.
24 What I knew then is not what I'm in a position to know now. And also the
25 difference between something produced informally and something produced
1 for a scientific publication is that in a scientific publication, you are
2 prepared to be reviewed by your peers, you cite sources, and you, you
3 know, cross every "t" and dot every "i". In an informal setting, one is
4 often less careful.
5 The fact is, in 1993, there were published reports making these
6 allegations, there was no way for me to check them. As I pointed out,
7 the Tribunal at that point was not up and functioning yet, and so if my
8 attempt at writing a brief history of which this is only a small segment
9 is in parts flawed, I accept that, but it's something I wrote under
10 different circumstances 15 years ago.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
12 Let's have a 20-minute break. We will resume at 10 after 6.00.
13 We have to stop now because the tapes are almost up.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could you just tell me how much
15 time I have, please, taking into account the extension of 15 minutes?
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Registrar, just before the
17 problem, told me that you had one hour and six minutes left.
18 --- Recess taken at 5.53 p.m.
19 --- On resuming at 6.11 p.m.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed.
21 Mr. Seselj, you have the floor.
22 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I hope, Judges, that you received
24 the two paragraphs from the first instance judgement in the Brdjanin
25 case. I have nothing more to comment, except to state that my name is
1 not mentioned here, nor are any "Seselj's men" or the volunteers of my
3 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, do you consider me a fascist?
4 A. I don't know. I mean, you have your ideology, of course.
5 Mussolini had his. I've heard people call you a fascist, yes, but ...
6 Q. Well, do you think that the Serbian Radical Party, of which I'm
7 still the president, which is the strongest political party in Serbia,
8 that it is a fascist party, in fact? You know that it is the single
9 strongest party in Serbia, it has the largest number of members of
10 Parliament, it is about to form the government, the cabinet. It is very
11 powerful at the local level. So is it a fascist party, in your opinion,
12 as a historian?
13 A. I told you, I'm not a political scientist, but I do believe that
14 it espouses extreme nationalism, which some people have characterized as
16 Q. But I do hope you realise that not all nationalists are fascists.
17 Was de Gaulle a fascist, the greatest French nationalist in the 20th
18 century? There's no doubt about that, is there, but could one say that
19 he was a fascist at all?
20 A. De Gaulle not, maybe, but Le Pen, certainly.
21 Q. So you could prove that Le Pen is a fascist?
22 MR. MUNDIS: Objection. Relevance.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, could you tell us
24 the relevance of all this?
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I asked the witness whether
1 he considered me to be a fascist. The witness said that he didn't, but
2 that people did say that. I asked him whether the Serbian Radical Party
3 was a fascist party. He said that he couldn't say that it was a fascist
4 party, but that it was a nationalist -- a radical nationalist party,
5 which is not controversial. That is very important for me, because --
6 could you please show document number 4 up on the screen.
7 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, you published a paper -- or, rather, this is your
8 statement in an article entitled: "Andras Riedlmayer re events in
9 Kosovo." Could you please go to page, I believe -- could you just leaf
10 through it? I think it's page 3, but I'm not sure. In fact, it's
11 page 1. Since I have this version in the Serbian language and this is
12 the English version, you see here that in the middle paragraph, the one
13 that's marked, you stated:
14 "The current political crisis in Serbia -- the beneficiaries of
15 the current political crisis in Serbia are more likely to be the
16 Radicals, who under Seselj's successor, Tomislav Nikolic, have been
17 trying to remake their image into something less scary than the
18 neo-fascist party that they are."
19 So here again you state -- the date of this article is the 13th
20 of March, 2008, so it's just before you came here to testify. You stated
21 that we, the Radicals, are a neo-fascist party; is that so?
22 A. I certainly wrote this. On the other hand, this is not a
23 publication -- [French interpretation on English channel]
24 It's an e-mail I sent to a friend, who then put it up on his
25 blog. Blogs are web logs. They're informal commentary by people on
1 current events and various other things. It's not a formal publication.
2 I -- as I indicated in my earlier answer to you, there are many people
3 who do, indeed, characterize the SRS as neo-fascist, and --
4 Q. This is not about many people. We're talking about you. I'm not
5 interested in what you say about many people. I'm interested in you.
6 And again I caught you lying. You said here that the Serbian Radical
7 Party was a neo-fascist party, and you know that things that are
8 published on web sites, on the internet, are as much published as if they
9 were printed in the newspapers or magazines or if things like that were
10 broadcast on TV, it's published, made public?
11 MR. MUNDIS: Objection again with, "Again I caught you lying."
12 Even if the witness were expressing an opinion as to the characterization
13 of the SRS, that is not something that in any way, shape, or form could
14 be characterized as a lie. We object to this.
15 And again, Your Honours, we strongly object to the accused
16 calling witnesses liars, false witnesses, et cetera, on the record.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, the witness sent an
18 e-mail which was posted on a blog. I'll come back to this later.
19 The interested party is talking about your political party, your
20 successor, and so forth and so on, and then you said, "I caught you
21 lying." "Again I caught you lying." What did he lie about? Could you
22 tell us exactly what you mean by this, because I can't really understand.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I asked the witness
24 whether he considered me a fascist. He did not say "yes." Then I asked
25 him if he considered the Serbian Radical Party, and I am an active and
1 current president, whether it was a fascist party. He did not say "yes."
2 He said this is something that can be heard from other people, but he did
3 not say that this was his position. And now I found an article where it
4 transpires that he labels the Serbian Radical Party a neo-fascist party.
5 I'm attacking his credibility, and I think I'm very successful in it.
6 I think -- I hope that you already realise that, that I was successful in
7 impeaching this witness.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, at first Mr. Seselj
9 asked you whether you considered him as a fascist. You answered by
10 saying, "I'm not into politics. I don't know." Then he asked further
11 questions, and you said -- in a few words, you said "no." And then we
12 have a document cropping up where it is written, black on white, that the
13 Serbian Radical Party and its members are neo-fascists, but that some are
14 trying to reshape their image, such as Nikolic. You see that there is a
15 difference between what you said earlier and what you have written in
16 this paper.
17 THE WITNESS: You will note, Your Honour, that I was saying that
18 it has been characterized as such. I didn't say that I didn't think so.
19 But if I have to be rude, I'll say it. The Radical Party, in its
20 programme, historically at the time of the Balkan wars and during the
21 Kosovo war of 1999, had a programme that was in many ways justly
22 characterizable as fascist. It has been trying to remake its image, and
23 that's what I was commenting on. It's simply a comment on the current
24 political situation.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I'm not going to go into this
1 debate, because we have not been seized of the question as to whether
2 this party is this or this party is that. However, I would like to tell
3 you how surprised I am.
4 You have already testified in a number of major cases which were
5 picked up by the media. You knew that you were called here as an expert
6 witness, not just a plain witness but an expert witness for the
7 Prosecution. You know that, by definition, an expert witness is somebody
8 that is totally unbiased, that is not prejudiced against anything, but on
9 March 13, 2008, just a few weeks ago, you send a document which was
10 posted by the recipient on a blog. You're saying this is informal. Very
11 well, but of course you know that the communication -- everything is on
12 the internet, everything is on web sites and on blogs and everyone knows
13 everything. Didn't you consider that by sending this e-mail to a person,
14 when you were supposed to testify just a few weeks later, this could
15 create a problem?
16 THE WITNESS: I was rather surprised when he posted it on the
17 blog. I had sent it to him as a private communication. This was not
18 meant for a general public. On the other hand, I am an observer of
19 current events, like anybody else, and make comments about current
20 events, including political events. My understanding is that as an
21 expert here, I'm an expert on matters other than politics, and as such,
22 anything I've said about the matters relating to my expertise before this
23 Tribunal has yet to be challenged, in terms of its veracity or its
25 I took an oath when I took the witness stand here, and I promised
1 to say the truth, as I saw it, and certainly I've been doing my best to
2 do that. You know, I --
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
4 Mr. Seselj.
5 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] I would like to add, after what
6 I read in the transcript, that the witness said -- answered negatively to
7 the question put by Mr. Seselj, when he asked him whether the witness
8 thought that Mr. Seselj was a fascist. This is when he said "no."
9 As far as the party is concerned and as far as this paper that
10 was posted on a blog, there, there is no answer, or at least the answer
11 that we have is a bit ambiguous, and the only answer we have is the
12 following. The witness says:
13 "I believe that Seselj's party espouses a very -- an extreme
14 nationalist view, and that some could characterize this party as
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj.
17 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, you went on to say there were some fascist parts
19 in the Serbian Radical Party programme earlier. Could you please be more
20 specific? What elements in the policies and activities of the
21 Serbian Radical Party were actually fascist?
22 A. Well, it's been a long time since I've read your party's
23 programme, but I do recall reading it in the 1990s, and some of the items
24 in your programme, referring to Kosovo, certainly sounded to me like
25 coming from that point of view, from an extreme point of view. It's been
1 a decade since I saw that, and it's not the matter of my expertise. If
2 I'd known that you were going to ask me about that, I would have reread
3 your programme.
4 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, it is one thing to be extremist, and it's a
5 completely different thing to be a fascist. It's one thing to be
6 radical, which means to go to the root of the things - that's why our
7 party is called the Radical Party - and it's a completely different thing
8 to be fascist.
9 Have you ever found, in the programme of the Serbian Radical
10 Party, any elements that would indicate that we were opposed to
12 MR. MUNDIS: Objection. This goes way beyond -- this goes way
13 beyond the scope of the witness's expertise and his report and his
14 testimony. This issue -- this topic has been questioned on and it's
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are partially right. This
17 witness is also a historian and well read.
18 Witness, please, if you can answer, please answer. If you
19 believe that this goes beyond your field of competence, just say, "I
20 can't answer." You're the best one to know how to answer.
21 THE WITNESS: As a historian, my training is in Ottoman history,
22 not in current political events. I believe this goes beyond my
24 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, it suffices that I read Philip Hitti's book.
1 It's a rather lengthy one, 700 pages. It was in Serbian, The History of
2 the Ottoman Empire, and on the basis of that one book, I can -- I now say
3 that I'm an expert in the matter. I can't say that.
4 You had general studies in history, and you know that fascism,
5 Nazism, communism, that they're characterized by collectivist ideology;
6 isn't that right? So in the programme of the Serbian Radical Party, did
7 you find anything resembling a collectivistic ideology? Let's take
8 things in order, so "yes" or "no" to that question.
9 A. It's beyond my expertise to talk about that. As I told you, it's
10 been over a decade since I saw the programme of your party. By now, most
11 of what I retain of it is a general impression rather than the specifics.
12 I am not in a position to go through it point by point with you.
13 Q. Well, how, then, are you able to state that the Serbian Radical
14 Party is a neo-fascist party? You must have proof and evidence of that
15 and say that, for example, we advocate collectivism, that we're opposed
16 to democracy, that we are anti-intellectualists, that we're racists, and
17 things like that, that we're against a multiparty system, that we're some
18 variation of some social Darwinism. It's easy to put a label and say
19 "fascist," but if you do that, if you label someone, you must have
20 evidence to show that. You just slap this on someone, slap a label on a
21 party, and finish there.
22 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, if you are using
23 this argument like you have in the past, to test the credibility of the
24 witness, I understand full well. You have done this, you've tested his
25 credibility, and we'll see. But if you wish to address the merits of
1 these questions, you must understand that he is not here to talk about
2 those questions. He is not competent in that area. His report deals
3 with different subjects. So if you go beyond the question of the
4 credibility of this witness, then of course we need to address the
5 relevance of this. And to my mind, your last questions were not
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judge Lattanzi, the total time of
8 those two minutes that you deducted from my time because of abusing the
9 objections during the examination-in-chief, I challenged the
10 professionalism of this witness and his expert report, and I am
11 challenging and destroying his credibility. And once I complete this
12 process, there will be nothing left of this witness's credibility, so
13 that's my aim.
14 Why should I speak of professionalism when he's not professional
15 in anything, an expert in anything. If we talk about photography and the
16 lack of a flash, not enough light when photographs were taken, or to talk
17 about what some man might have told him in a location, I don't think
18 those are professional questions. So the two minutes that you took away
19 from me, I managed to destroy him, in professional terms, and now I'm
20 turning to his moral credibility. I'm challenging that, and I have a new
21 question for you, Mr. Riedlmayer, since I still have not destroyed your
22 credibility as much as I would like to have done, although the results
23 are catastrophic thus far.
24 Q. But in testifying in the Milosevic trial and the Krajisnik trial,
25 you also testified about the burning of the largest library in
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina in the building of the municipal building in Sarajevo,
2 in fact; do you remember that? The town hall?
3 A. [Previous translation continues]...
4 Q. You wrote an extensive article on the subject, "From the ashes of
5 the cultural heritage of Bosnia-Herzegovina," words to that effect, and
6 you describe the town hall which was set alight, and said that 1.500.000
7 books were burned in the process; is that right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And that is your article dating to 2002; is that right?
10 A. That is correct.
11 Q. And the Prosecutor gave me a report by the Parliamentary Assembly
12 of the Council of Europe, dated the 20th of September, 1993, and that is
13 a document IT-03-67-57/12 --
14 THE INTERPRETER: Those numbers were far too fast for the
15 interpreter to repeat.
16 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
17 Q. It was a document published nine years before you published your
18 article, and in paragraph 25 of that document -- I hope you have the
19 document on your screens, on e-court already. I have adapted myself, you
20 see, to e-court, and I hope the Prosecution has done the same. Anyway,
21 in paragraph 25, this is what it says: According to the report by the
22 Fund for Assistance to the National and University Library in Sarajevo,
23 the fire caused by Serb bombing on the 23rd and 24th of August, 1992,
24 destroyed the depot on the upper level, and the lending out inventory,
25 that is to say, the library cards and everything else, all the records,
1 all manuals, and the musical documents, music documents, what was
2 retained was the Incanabula, which are important medieval manuscripts, as
3 you know as a historian, other manuscripts, archives, rare books, the
4 Bosnian collection, and a large portion of the collection of the
5 periodicals of Bosnia-Herzegovina, not to mention some titles from other
6 libraries that were stored in that building. In other words, the damage
7 was luckily less than was at first feared, when it came to the loss of
8 irreplaceable documents, but it remains very serious. Perhaps 600.000
9 books or titles are concerned. Dr. Mustafic, 1.500.000 library units.
10 So nine years before your article appeared, the Council of Europe
11 made these observations, that is to say, that the most valuable works
12 were saved in the National Library of Bosnia-Herzegovina, they remain
13 intact, although a large number of books were destroyed, but they were
14 more recent editions that can be replenished. It is easier for me to
15 learn of somebody beating someone than when a book is burnt.
16 Anyway, I spent a lot of time working in that library, and there
17 I differ from you, because the library was very useful to me in my life
18 and work.
19 Anyway, you have an official report here, and you continue to say
20 "1.500.000 books." You quote that figure. Now, there are some exotic
21 things here that appear. For instance, you say that while the fire was
22 being put out, the Serbs, from their surrounding hills, used machine fire
23 to cut the fire hoses. Do you remember saying that?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Do you know, Mr. Riedlmayer, that there are no hills where Serb
1 positions were located from which any machine-gun can fire into the town
2 hall building; that's quite impossible?
3 A. All right. Several things on that, since it was a complex
5 First of all, that report was from 1993, six months after the
6 destruction of the National University Library. At that point, Sarajevo
7 was still under siege. The rescued volumes were in storage in several
8 locations. Full assessment had yet to be made.
9 After the war, more extensive assessments were made and
10 published, and I refer to them in my expert report to the -- for the
11 Milosevic trial.
12 Secondly, yes, some special collections that were in the basement
13 of the library were saved largely because of a lack of oxygen. The
14 intensity of the fire was such that it drew all the oxygen upward, and
15 the items in the basement, to which some of the more valuable items in
16 the collection had been moved, survived. But the volume of material that
17 was saved is relatively small. I was shown six or seven large trunks
18 that contained some of the most precious items in the collection.
19 However, a very large part, a majority of -- for example, the Bosnian
20 periodicals collection was lost. This is material that no library, other
21 than the National Library, collected to such an extent.
22 A large percentage of the deposit publications, a fairly complete
23 collection of everything that had been printed in Bosnia from the
24 mid-19th century until the war, a large percentage of that vanished.
25 What remained has been estimated at roughly 100.000 items. What was lost
1 included not only books, but special collections, maps, photographs, and
2 other items. So the 1.500.000 is a very firm estimate of the number of
3 library items that was lost, this according to Bosnian colleagues who had
4 published extensive material about it.
5 As to what happened to the firemen, I interviewed a number of
6 firemen who had been in the fire brigade at the time of the attack on the
7 National Library. What they reported was that the water had been cut at
8 the time of the attack and that they had to expose themselves by running
9 hoses to the Neretva River, to pump water from there.
10 When you are out on the "obala", on the promenade along the
11 river, you are in plain sight from several directions, from the
12 mountaintops, which were indeed held by Serb forces.
13 The fire hoses were then snaked into the narrow street between
14 Bascarsija and the library. I have raw video footage of the firemen
15 trying to put out the fire, with the fire hoses spurting water everywhere
16 because they had been punctured in numerous places. What the calibre of
17 ammunition was used to achieve this effect is beyond my expertise,
18 because I'm not a military expert, but I was told by the firemen
19 that,(a), they were fired on with heavy calibre and that anti-aircraft
20 munitions, aimed at street level, were shot at --
21 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, that's a very long story. Tell me, how long did
22 those firemen need to rush to the Neretva River and take up some water
23 from there?
24 A. The hoses were run from the library, across the main street, and
25 into the river. I didn't ask them how long that took, but presumably if
1 hoses are leaking all over the place, one placement may not have been
3 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, for them to run to the Neretva River, they --
4 A. [Previous translation continues]...
5 Q. -- they would need 15 days. This man Mustafic, Dr. Mustafic,
6 says that 600.000 titles were burnt, and later on it turned out that less
7 were burnt. But you should know that for days before the fire broke out,
8 the Muslim authorities used trucks to pull out the most valuable books
9 from the town hall, which means that the fire was prepared.
10 Do you know that during that fire itself, in Sarajevo there was
11 the most prominent French Serb-hater present, Henry Bernard Levy, or the
12 other way around, but "Levy," anyway. Have you heard of him and that he
13 was there at the time? Have you heard of him?
14 A. I've heard of him. I have not read anything he's written --
15 Q. Without any moral scruples, that man is, so you don't have to
16 read about him or hear about him. He has no scruples and he is
17 anti-Serb, he hates the Serbs. And he bragged that the famous Sarajevo
18 "hagada," that is to say, a manuscript that the Jews brought when they
19 were persecuted from Spain, that he personally saved this manuscript.
20 Did the firemen tell you about that there, the ones that you interviewed?
21 A. Okay. Well, if he bragged about it, then he was not telling the
22 truth. First of all, the Sarajevo "hagada" was never in the
23 National Library, it was in the Zemaljski Muzej, the National Museum.
24 And, secondly, I doubt that he personally had anything to do with its
25 rescue. It was evacuated from the museum weeks before the National
1 Library was shelled.
2 What I rely on is not statements like that, but video footage of
3 what happened, statements from eyewitnesses, professional assessments
4 published in the journals of the local librarians' association,
5 interviews with librarian colleagues. You can read about it in my expert
6 report. Obviously, it has more detail than the article you just cited,
7 but, nevertheless, I would disagree with those preliminary figures from
9 As for the question that -- alleging that the books were
10 evacuated before the attack, that presupposes,(a), that they either knew
11 of the attack or that the attack didn't happen and it was somehow ignited
12 from within. I have spoken to enough eyewitnesses who have seen the
13 shells landing, independent multiple sources, that I have no doubt that
14 the library was, indeed, shelled, and it was shelled with incendiary
16 Q. Your sources are unidentified, Mr. Riedlmayer, and on the
17 videotape that you mention, there was no explosion of a shell, nor a
18 machine-gun firing? Just say "yes" or "no". That wasn't on the tape,
19 was it?
20 To use the time I have, I'd like to show you another document, so
21 don't take up my time. If you're able to say "yes" or "no", if not --
22 A. [Previous translation continues]... very short. I will simply
23 say that the videotape footage was taken the day after the attack. The
24 attack occurred at nightfall on one day and the fire was still burning
25 the next day, and so it doesn't show the original shelling because it was
1 getting dark when the original shelling happened. But I talked to people
2 who were there.
3 Q. You've answered the question, yes, and that's an extensive answer
4 and I'm quite satisfied.
5 Now, Madam Usher, document number 2 on the overhead projector,
7 Have you heard of the Centre for Research into Crimes against the
8 Serb People, the leader of which is Mr. Milivoj Ivanisevic? Have you
9 heard of the centre?
10 A. I have.
11 Q. I have a document which I received from Mr. Ivanisevic, himself,
12 and I would like to show you parts of that document; not the entire
13 document, very brief excerpts. Anyway, he describes his knowledge, what
14 he knows about the burning of the town hall in Sarajevo and says the
16 "During my work in compiling studies on the Serb victims of
17 Sarajevo, I would like to remind you that there were an enormous number
18 of Serb victims who, according to present knowledge, amounts to 5.776
19 victims and 859 persons of Serb ethnicity whose fate is still unknown.
20 And I came across material which relates to self-shelling, as well as
21 documents and material which relate to the destruction of cultural
22 monuments and the cultural heritage in this town. One of those cases, in
23 my opinion, deserves special attention. That is the burning of the town
24 hall in which the National and University Library was located. This
25 event, although it was early in the morning, at around 3.00 or 4.00 a.m.,
1 was directly broadcast live by all television stations, CNN Sarajevo and
2 others, just as happened in all other cases when the Muslims in Sarajevo
3 organised spectacles of this kind. In the surrounding streets,
4 Vasko Miskin [phoen], Veselin Maslesa, Veliki and Mali Curciluk and
5 others, around the Evropa Hotel, you could hear people talking loudly.
6 There was a lot of noise, soldiers wearing black uniforms shouting to one
7 another from the unit under Commander Cele [as interpreted]. They were
8 boasting amongst themselves how, that with a Frenchman, they set fire to
9 the town hall, and they stressed the capabilities and skill of their
10 French collaborators, especially, and all the inhabitants in the streets
11 could hear this.
12 "Remembrance of this event was published in a programme,
13 'Klica [phoen] Kulture' on TV Sarajevo, a sort of roundtable held on the
14 premises of the town hall that was burnt down on the 6th of December,
15 2001, in a programme led by some foreigner, but several guests took part.
16 Among them was Mr. Henry Bernard Levy, Mrs. Cupicic, a guest from
17 Belgrade. Mr. Henry Bernard Levy joined that programme, was triumphant
18 in showing the Sarajevo 'hagada,' which allegedly he himself saved from
19 the fire. And he testified to the fact that at the time when the town
20 hall was set on fire, he happened to be present, and as he said, he saved
21 the 'hagada'.
22 "I would like to remind you that many books from the library were
23 taken out several days earlier, but that books remained in the library
24 which were mostly by Serb authors. We don't believe that the 'hagada'
25 was among them. After so many years, this is the first public testimony
1 about the presence of Mr. Levy during that tragical event as far as our
2 culture is concerned. They didn't know the name of the Frenchman present
3 and it was only the competence of Commander Cele who spoke of this
5 What do you think of that, Mr. Riedlmayer, as a historian and as
6 an expert witness for the Prosecution?
7 A. I would say that, first of all, I'm not prepared to take this
8 without some supporting evidence of some sort. It's somebody's
10 During the war, there were numerous different rationales given
11 for the shelling of the library. It was variously claimed that it had
12 been used as a military position - this is what Mr. Milosevic
13 subsequently claimed. Mr. Karadzic, in September of the same year, 1992,
14 when the library was burned, told Elivisal [phoen] that the Muslims had
15 set it on fire because they didn't like its architecture.
16 There were all kinds of allegations and rumours, but I simply
17 have trouble believing anything that's stated in this. I've never heard
18 Bernard Henry-Levy claiming that he had rescued a book from the burning
19 library that was not in the burning library. I don't exclude the
20 possibility that he may have done so, but if he did, he is boasting,
21 because the "hagada" was never stored in the National Library.
22 So I don't think much of this document.
23 Q. Mr. Riedlmayer, is it clear to you that the treasury of the
24 National Library is equally important to Serbs, Muslims and Croats who
25 live in Bosnia-Herzegovina, that there is no way in which it can be more
1 valuable to the Muslims there than to the local Serbs? Is that not fully
2 clear to you?
3 A. Of course. The National Library was the repository of the
4 cultural heritage of everyone in Bosnia. The only reason I can see why
5 it would have been shelled is, (a), it was a Bosnian national institution
6 and Bosnian national identity, and Bosnian national institutions were
7 abhorred by the ideology of the Bosnian Serb forces like Mr. Karadzic and
8 his SDS.
9 And, secondly, you can see --
10 Q. First of all, Mr. Riedlmayer, there is no national identity of
11 Bosnia, Bosnian national identity. There is only the multinational
12 identity of Bosnia. There is no Bosnian nation. Serbs, Croats and
13 Muslims lived in Bosnia, and all the way up to the Second World War, the
14 Orthodox Serbs were the most numerous group. There is no Bosnian
15 national identity. This started only during the course of the war, when
16 somebody proclaimed the Bosnian Muslims to be Bosniaks, so that they
17 could seize Bosnian cultural heritage. Why would Serbs be less Bosniak
18 than Muslims? If I was born in Sarajevo, if both of my parents are from
19 Herzegovina, am I not a Bosniak, in terms of my territorial and national
20 belonging? Why would a Muslim be more of a Bosniak than I am as a Serb
21 Orthodox if my folk lived there since time immemorial?
22 A. I agree, you are a Bosnian and a Herzegovac, but again I think
23 we're wandering outside of the subject. The fact is that --
24 Q. No, no. State, not national, because if it's national, then it
25 belonged to the three officially-recognised nations, the Muslims, the
1 Serbs and the Croats, irrespective of the order you take. It doesn't
2 matter. Even the constitution changes the order; Serbs, Croats, Muslims;
3 Muslims, Croats, Serbs, and so on and so forth. You know that
4 constitution from the former Yugoslavia, the constitution of
5 Bosnia-Herzegovina, so it was equally Serb, Croat and Muslim. Why would
6 the Serbs then be interested in destroying this cultural treasure? In
7 destroying the traces of Serb existence for almost a thousand years
8 before the Turks came to Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is the kind of traces
9 that are there, from the Tartars of Kulin Ban and so on and so forth. Do
10 you know about that? And do you know that anyone conducted a serious,
11 impartial investigation about the burning down of the town hall? Have
12 you ever heard of anything like that? Just say "yes" or "no," please.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Who was that?
15 A. It was the International Court of Justice, which in its judgement
16 in the case Bosnia-Herzegovina versus Serbian Montenegro, made very few
17 rulings on facts. Most of the facts it relied upon were from the
18 judgements of the ICTY, but on this one they ruled.
19 Q. I have to interrupt you at this point. The International Court
20 of Justice never conducted any kind of investigation. They heard
21 witnesses that were called by the two opposing parties, but they did not
22 conduct an investigation. No one conducted an objective, impartial
23 investigation, because all the Western observers in Sarajevo knew
24 straight away what this was all about. Had they had any suspicion that
25 it was done by the Serbs, they would have carried out an investigation in
1 order to brand this as barbarism. Since they knew it was the Muslims who
2 did this, there was no investigation, not by the Council of Europe, not
3 by the UN, no one; isn't that right?
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, we're going to have to
5 put an end to this. Mr. Seselj's argument is that the disappearance of
6 these books, these works, important works for the three important
7 components, elements of Bosnia-Herzegovina is, according to him, due to
8 the Muslims and not to the Serbs. What do you say about that?
9 THE WITNESS: I believe there is no credible evidence to support
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
12 So the Registrar shall tell me now how much time Mr. Seselj has
14 You have 26 minutes left, Mr. Seselj, for tomorrow, after
16 So tomorrow, we will resume our hearing at a quarter past 2.00.
17 Mr. Seselj will have the floor for 26 minutes, after which maybe
18 Mr. Mundis may wish to redirect. And if there are no questions after
19 that, we will thank the witness, who may withdraw.
20 I was very optimistic, Witness, at the beginning of this hearing.
21 I was hoping we might finish today, but unfortunately we still need 30
22 minutes. So you may stay until tomorrow; is it possible for you?
23 THE WITNESS: Yes. My wife will be unhappy, but I will.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
25 Therefore, you will apologise for us to your wife, but in the
1 interests of justice we need you to be here tomorrow. Therefore, please
2 convey my regrets to your wife, and we meet again tomorrow at a quarter
3 past 2.00.
4 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.02 p.m.,
5 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 28th day of
6 May, 2008, at 2.15 p.m.