1 Wednesday, 9 March 2011
2 [Rule 98 bis Hearing]
3 [Open session]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.33 p.m.
5 [The accused entered court]
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, kindly call the
8 THE REGISTRAR: Thank you and good afternoon, Your Honours.
9 This is case number IT-03-67-T, the Prosecutor versus
10 Vojislav Seselj.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
12 Today is Wednesday, the 9th of March, 2011. Good afternoon to
13 all the people in and around the courtroom, the OTP representatives.
14 Good afternoon to you, Mr. Seselj, and good afternoon to all the people
15 assisting us, especially the Court Deputy, who has been working non-stop
16 ever since this morning, and the same is true of Judge Lattanzi. So I'm
17 very grateful to them, in particular, for staying on.
18 We are now going to have the end of the Prosecution's 98 bis
19 arguments. The Court Deputy told me that you had exactly 35 minutes
21 Yes, Mr. Marcussen.
22 MR. MARCUSSEN: Before we continue the Prosecution's submissions,
23 I wanted to just briefly mention two things.
24 One is I realised yesterday that at transcript page 16720,
25 line 7, there is a mistake in the reference to the exhibit number. I
1 referred to Exhibit 1138. It should have been 1137.
2 More importantly, perhaps, Your Honours, we did overnight try to
3 make an effort to better assist the Trial Chamber by preparing binders
4 containing the exhibits that will be used during the remainder of the
5 Prosecution's arguments today. We may not get to all of them, but we
6 have tried to line up what we will be referring to. A considerable
7 amount of staff in the OTP has been producing this material. We have
8 earlier provided, I believe, printed-out versions of all the exhibits and
9 witness binders and things, but I hope this material will also assist.
10 We have only been able to do it in an English version, unfortunately.
11 So if the Usher would assist, we can provide copies to the Judges
12 and maybe to the Legal Officer.
13 As I said, we only have it in English. I don't want to make an
14 issue out of it. If the accused wants to accept a copy, we have one for
15 him. If he doesn't want it, obviously that's fine.
16 Thank you, Your Honours.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Well, I'm
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I say something?
20 Judges, just before the proceedings started, you instructed the
21 OTP to prepare for us, every time, a survey of all the documents that
22 they intend to use in the courtroom, regardless of the witness involved.
23 These instructions of yours are valid today as well. There is no witness
24 here today, but the Prosecutors appear as witnesses, as they testify
25 about their wishes. So if they are invoking certain documents, then I
1 would have to have them handy, particularly because I had been prevented
2 from having any one of my associates present here today.
3 The OTP always has a big team of people, whereas on this side,
4 I'm only accompanied by this beautiful lady guard. I'm not complaining.
5 I would never like to be in the position of the Prosecutor. But how can
6 I follow all this evidence that they are invoking?
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, of course, in
8 principle, you're right, and you're right as to the principle. But as
9 you know, the OTP put all these documents together in the few hours
10 preceding the hearing.
11 As you were speaking, I was looking at the documents, and I must
12 tell you that you are aware of a large part of them, because these are
13 photos of destroyed buildings, so there's no need for translations. You
14 just have to look at the photos. And then there are witness statements
15 that you know inside-out, because you, yourself, through your associates,
16 gathered those people's statements, so you won't be surprised. There are
17 victims' lists that you know as well very well, and there are some
18 excerpts of your books, which you know better than anyone else because
19 you are their very author.
20 So at first sight, there's nothing that should be of any
21 prejudice to you, but I wanted to have these documents so as to be
22 assisted as we are listening to the OTP's submissions. You could have
23 given us documents, and you know that I read your documents at all times,
24 even if they were drafted in Serbian.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, please don't
1 misunderstand me. I'm not complaining about this. I'm just objecting in
2 principle. Otherwise, throughout these proceedings I have been in a
3 position that is far superior to that of the Prosecution, so I'm not
4 bothered by that at all. There is certainly nothing in those documents
5 that would charge me with anything. But in principle, the Prosecutor
6 should have prepared all of this in advance, and that is the end of my
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,
9 Mr. Seselj.
10 This being said, you may proceed, Ms. Biersay.
11 MS. BIERSAY: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 And just for the Trial Chamber's information, my plan is to try
13 to finish up the last crime base, then turn to direct perpetration, and
14 hopefully I can do that in about 15 minutes, and then I will turn the
15 lectern over to Mr. Marcussen.
16 [Prosecution Submissions]
17 MS. BIERSAY: Yesterday, we addressed the crime basis of Vukovar,
18 of Zvornik, Greater Sarajevo and Mostar. And today, that final piece,
19 we'd like to address Nevesinje.
20 The evidence supporting the same pattern of crimes that we've
21 already seen in the other locations, that pattern was replicated in
22 Nevesinje. And the Trial Chamber has before it the testimony of
23 Stoparic, of Riedlmayer, of VS-1022, 1051, 1067, Exhibit P524, 487, P880
24 and P881, among others, of course, but those are the ones that we would
25 highlight as a summary for the Trial Chamber's information.
1 Now, in May and June of 1992, Serb forces, including the VRS,
2 local police, members of the Serbian MUP, Red Berets unit,
3 SRS/Serbian Chetnik Movement volunteers, Arkan's men, and other
4 paramilitaries attacked the southern part of Nevesinje. The non-Serb
5 civilians fled. They fled into the woods, fearing for their lives.
6 Those who remained in Nevesinje, including the elderly, were later
7 killed. Serb forces then started shelling the villages north of
8 Nevesinje. However, villages where Serbs lived were not attacked.
9 After shelling each village, Serb forces would enter and burn
10 houses, then expel the remaining inhabitants and steal any movable
11 property. Many of the non-Serb women and children were forced to flee to
12 Croatia. After the attack, Muslim and Catholic religious buildings were
13 destroyed, and the Serbian Orthodox Church, however, was spared. That
14 remained intact. Those non-Serbs who did not manage to escape, they were
15 rounded up and captured by the Serb forces, forces including VRS soldiers
16 under Zdravko Kandic, SRS and Serbian Chetnik Movement volunteers and
17 Red Berets.
18 For instance, in late June 1992 in Nevesinje, 76 Muslim civilians
19 were arrested in the woods in the Velez area. Upon capture, one of the
20 women asked one of the members -- a woman asked one of the members of the
21 Serb forces what -- what were these non-Serbs being accused of, and he
22 told her. He said, and I apologise for using these offensive words. He
23 said, Shut up, balija, balinka, you're guilty of being a Muslim.
24 About 28 men were separated from the women and children and
25 killed. The women and children were then transported to a heating
1 factory in Kilavci, where they were detained in inhumane conditions and
2 subjected to physical violence. Subsequently, 44 of these detainees,
3 including very, very young children, were murdered and thrown into a mass
4 grave. Five of the women were transported to Boracko Jezero, where
5 Petar Divjakovic and other Serb forces, including
6 SRS/Serbian Chetnik Movement volunteers, violently raped them and kept
7 some of them imprisoned for months. During the detention, some of the
8 captives were forced to convert to Christianity, at least one of them, to
9 assume a Serb name in order to survive.
10 A Trial Chamber could thus conclude that also in Nevesinje Serb
11 forces controlled by JCE members committed persecution, murder, torture,
12 cruel treatment, deportation, forcible transfer, wanton destruction, and
13 plunder of public or private property.
14 So, Your Honours, we have, therefore, seen that throughout each
15 of the crime bases in Croatia and in Bosnia-Herzegovina -- and I should
16 clarify for the Trial Chamber that I sometimes use the word "Bosnia" as a
17 shorthand for "Bosnia and Herzegovina." Whenever I've said "Bosnia,"
18 I've meant the entire entity Bosnia and Herzegovina.
19 So we've seen that in Croatia and Bosnia how the JCE forces
20 implemented their persecutory and violent campaign, repeated again and
21 again and again. Witnesses, including JCE member Babic, in
22 Exhibit P1137, described the patterns used to implement these crimes.
23 And as described in Exhibit P880, general orders were always to burn
24 down, destroy everything, make the villages and the people disappear.
25 Throughout the crime bases, this pattern of crime is notable,
1 including the forcible displacement of non-Serb populations, and this was
2 achieved both through fear, and coercion, and by physically rounding up
3 and expelling non-Serbs once towns and villages had been taken over. It
4 included the systematic murder of non-Serbs. It included the detention
5 of surviving non-Serbs in camps, where they were abused, raped, and
6 killed, and it included the deliberate prevention of the return of
7 non-Serbs both through official measures and through the plunder and
8 destruction of their homes and religious sites.
9 Now, there are many, many witnesses who have appeared before the
10 Trial Chamber, but some of them who have described these patterns
11 include: Martic and Matovina about Vocin; Berghofer, Bosarac, Cakalic
12 about Vukovar; VS-1000, VS-1028, about Bosanski Samac and Bijeljina
13 respectively; VS-1013, Alic and Banjanovic about Zvornik; VS-1055,
14 VS-1111 and Dzafic about Greater Sarajevo; and Witnesses 1051, 1052,
15 1067, Kujan and Tot about Mostar and Nevesinje.
16 I would now like to turn my attention to the direct perpetration
17 by the accused.
18 In addition to being responsible for crimes under other modes of
19 liability, he is also responsible for -- himself, personally, for the
20 crimes that he committed in Vukovar and Hrtkovci.
21 Now, the ICTR Appeals Chamber held in the Nahimana judgement that
22 hate speech, which means speech that disparages a group on the basis of
23 ethnicity or any other discriminatory ground, hate speech can constitute
24 an underlying act of persecution, and hate speech can rise to the level
25 of gravity of other crimes against humanity, especially when the speech
1 takes place in conjunction with other persecutory acts and/or in a
2 broader context of discrimination and violence.
3 So in relation to Hrtkovci, for example, the accused admitted
4 yesterday that considering that Serb refugees were leaving Croatia and
5 flooding Vojvodina on the day he gave his speech in Hrtkovci, he said, in
6 this courtroom on Monday, he said:
7 "Clearly, the general atmosphere in such a situation could not be
9 He knew exactly how sensitive and volatile that situation when he
10 gave that speech.
11 He told the Trial Chamber on Monday that Witness Oberschall
12 testified that there was no hate speech by the accused. That is not what
13 Witness Oberschall told the Trial Chamber. At transcript pages 2113 to
14 2122, this is what Witness Oberschall said, he explained:
15 "Hate speech is used, in the media and in conversations, in a
16 very vague, unspecific way, and if you're going to do a serious content
17 analysis, you have to be much more precise about exactly what you're
18 saying and what the content is."
19 He later said:
20 "You raise a consciousness of threat against a group that creates
21 fear and anxiety and the demand for action. The crucial part of the
22 propaganda that sets in motion actions is actually the threat speech."
23 And Mr. Oberschall continued:
24 "I have illustrated with particular statements, through
25 video-clips, and also in the content analysis, that your," the accused's,
1 "nationalist rhetoric was very heavily filled with threat speech."
2 Later, in response to the accused's own hypothetical,
3 Witness Oberschall said:
4 "The context is important here. If you advocate violence in a
5 dangerous situation where civilians/non-combatants are at risk and are
6 being killed, yes, then there are grounds for prosecuting you under
7 existing law."
8 Witness Oberschall did not say that the accused did not commit
9 hate speech as defined by the jurisprudence before this Trial Chamber.
10 In Vukovar, shortly before the city of Vukovar fell to Serb
11 forces on 18 November 1991, the accused visited the area, and he
12 encouraged Serb forces to ethnic cleansing and murder.
13 First, on 8 November 1991, in Sid, he stated that:
14 "This entire area will soon be cleared of Ustashas."
15 And that is in Exhibit P1285.
16 A few days later in Vukovar, he spoke to many of the
17 SRS/Serbian Chetnik Movement volunteers who would later be identified as
18 being among the most vicious perpetrators of the crimes that followed.
19 He urged the volunteers to violence, directing that not one Ustasha must
20 leave Vukovar alive. And this is set forth, for example, in
21 Exhibits P1074, paragraph 69, as well as P868, and also at transcript
22 pages 11121 and 14588. He added that no Ustashas could be left in
23 Serbian territory and that Serb fighters should show no mercy and just
24 kill them.
25 Using the denigrating and historically charged term "Ustasha" in
1 such volatile conditions constituted persecutorial hate speech. What he
2 said was understood by the witnesses who heard it as a call for massacres
3 and for the execution of any Croat prisoner. There were several
4 aggravating factors to this speech: The context -- the very context that
5 Witness Oberschall talked about; the tense battle-field atmosphere in
6 which it was delivered; the accused's position of moral and --
7 volunteers' actual authority; the accused's previous hateful public
8 speeches; and as already discussed, he constantly used "Ustasha" to the
9 public to mean all Croats. So, therefore, the accused's hate speech, we
10 submit, not only violated the victims' right to human dignity, but also
11 called for and resulted in violence that undermined their right to
13 Now, turning to Hrtkovci, and in this regard the Trial Chamber is
14 directed to the testimony of Ewa Tabeau, Baricevic, Ejic, Paulic, VS-61,
15 VS-67, VS-1134, as well as Exhibits P547, 556 and 565.
16 The accused focused in on Hrtkovci, which had been a very
17 peaceful town, with a mixed ethnic population. And as a result of that,
18 it became a focus for the accused's desire to exact revenge. He launched
19 a direct attack on the Croats in Vojvodina in the spring of 1992, and in
20 Hrtkovci especially, with the intention of driving them out of Serbia.
21 In Exhibit P893, from pages 20 to 23, he's quoted in a televised session
22 of the Serbian National Assembly on 1 April 1992, and he made it very
23 clear. Croats in towns throughout Vojvodina will not sleep peacefully
24 until they move away. He also said:
25 "We won't kill you, but we will pack you on trucks and trains so
1 you can try to manage in Zagreb."
2 He justified this call for ethnic cleansing on the basis of
3 revenge for Tudjman's expulsions of Serbs from Croatia. At a large rally
4 in Vojvodina on 4 April 1992, he again -- he said exactly the same
5 things, and the Trial Chamber can look to P1298, on page 2. But his
6 attack culminated on 6 May 1992, at an SRS rally held in Hrtkovci, and at
7 that rally Chetnik music played from loud-speakers as armed and
8 frightening Serbian Chetnik Movement and SRS volunteers were dressed in
9 black World War II-era Chetnik uniforms and moving throughout the crowd.
10 He addressed that crowd, and he talked specifically to Serb refugees who
11 had travelled from various parts of Vojvodina and Eastern Slavonia. And
12 there were some Croats also in that audience.
13 Now, on Monday, he tried to maintain that his call for civilised
14 population exchange, that was not a crime. But what he told the crowd in
15 Hrtkovci was:
16 "In this place, in Serb Srem, there is no room for Croats."
17 That was not the basis for civilised exchange. He said that the
18 rest of the Croats would have to clear out of Serbia:
19 "We will drive them to the border of Serbian territory, and they
20 can walk from there if they do not leave before on their own accord."
21 He pounded his chest several times during the speech and shouted
22 phrases like:
23 "Let them go to their homeland."
24 And to that, there was applause, and there were also shouts of
25 "Ustashas out" from the crowd.
1 His reputation and political power at the time was such that the
2 support for the list that was read out instilled fear in the targeted
3 individuals who were on that list, for their families, and the broader
4 Croat population in Hrtkovci. The news of his speech spread quickly.
5 People took the threat very seriously, and many witnesses came before
6 this Trial Chamber and testified that they left their homes and fled to
7 Croatia as a direct result of the accused's speech. And the
8 Trial Chamber also has the expert report regarding the mass departures
9 from the village in 1992.
10 The attack against Croat civilians in Hrtkovci in May to
11 August 1992 took place while an armed conflict was in progress in Croatia
12 and in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and it was part of the same widespread and
13 systematic attack against the civilian populations that took place there.
14 Article 5 does not require a material nexus between the armed
15 conflict and the acts of the accused, but we have the factors of the
16 accused advocating and justifying the expulsion of Croats from Hrtkovci,
17 because he said it was necessary to accommodate Serbs being expelled from
18 Croatia, and, two, as a measure of retaliation against Croats for the
19 expulsion of Serbs from Croatia. So I would also refer the Trial Chamber
20 to Exhibits P75, 892 and 893.
21 And we'd submit to the Trial Chamber that based on all of this
22 evidence, a Trial Chamber could conclude that all of the counts in the
23 indictment survive the accused's motion to dismiss.
24 And I'll now turn the lectern over to Mr. Marcussen.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
1 You may proceed, Mr. Marcussen.
2 MR. MARCUSSEN: Your Honours, as I mentioned at the start of the
3 Prosecution's submission, a 98 bis hearing is a hearing about evidence,
4 evidence admitted into the record.
5 Yesterday and today, the Prosecution has referred to specific
6 parts of the record in this case which could base -- form the basis of a
7 convict for the accused. Much of the evidence we have referred to has
8 been referred to for the purpose of a single proposition, but most of the
9 evidence, of course, goes to minimal issues than the ones we have
10 referred to them for. Moreover, we have not been able to refer to all
11 the evidence in the case.
12 When the Trial Chamber is to render its decision, it will look,
13 surely, to the whole record, the more than 1.300 exhibits admitted into
14 the case, and the live testimony of the 84 witnesses who have appeared
15 before the Trial Chamber.
16 The evidence that we have been discussing over the last two days
17 shows that the accused rose to popularity on a Chetnik ideology and
18 revived the Chetnik military organisations. He intended to create a
19 Greater Serbia through violence and fear.
20 When Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina pursued independence,
21 other members of the JCE also wanted to create a space for Serbs outside
22 Serbia and create a Serb land. They did not want Serbs to find
23 themselves in a minority in foreign countries. And to avoid this, they
24 set up the joint forces to achieve ethnic separation that we have been
25 discussing throughout our submissions. This was done in Croatia and
1 Bosnia and Herzegovina in exactly the same way. Parallel Serb
2 organisations were created, political structures, administrative
3 structures, police forces, and territorial defence.
4 The purpose of these preparations was clear. For example, from
5 Karadzic's intercept discussed yesterday, when Karadzic said that the
6 optimum was Greater Serbia, Milosevic and other Serbian leaders,
7 including the accused, gave considerable political and material support,
8 as reflected in the evidence. The support they gave was to the efforts
9 made by leaders in Croatia and Serbia -- Croatia and Bosnia and
10 Herzegovina to carve out Serb lands there.
11 The evidence we have discussed showed that Milosevic, in March of
12 1991, called out to political leaders to set their differences aside and
13 join forces to protect Serb interests. After that call, the accused
14 provided his forces, the SRS volunteers, to assist.
15 We have looked at the considerable evidence in the record about
16 arming and training and co-ordination between these various forces with a
17 view to create one fighting force that could be deployed. These fighting
18 forces consisted of volunteers from the SRS/SCP, members of the JNA,
19 members of the VRS, local police forces, and local territory defence
20 forces set up in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and members of the Serbian MUP.
21 And as we've seen, when these forces were deployed in Croatia, their
22 crimes were so widespread and notorious that they drew not only
23 international attention, but even JNA officers reported these crimes up
24 through the chain of command. Yet the crimes continued. And when the
25 same forces were deployed in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the ethnic -- the
1 campaign of ethnic cleansing continued in pursuit of Greater Serbia, the
2 same way that they had started in Croatia. And as Ms. Biersay has shown,
3 this campaign included the crimes charged in the indictment.
4 Witnesses have described the forces that committed the crimes
5 against them. They have described the systematic methods by which they
6 were expelled, abused, detained, killed, and how various measures were
7 taken to prevent their return. Ms. Biersay has also been discussing in
8 detail the evidence in the record which shows the accused's contribution
9 to these endeavours.
10 On Monday, the accused made a reference to the Nahimana case and
11 said that he had never called anyone -- called them cockroaches. But in
12 fact, Your Honours, there are some remarkable differences -- some
13 remarkable similarities between himself and Nahimana. Nahimana was the
14 founder of a newspaper and a radio station which played a profound role
15 in the genocide in Rwanda. The accused, he had two newspapers that
16 disseminated his views. To those who saw and heard the accused at the
17 time, his hate speech was as direct as the propaganda of the "Kangura"
18 newspaper and the RTLM Radio Station. Indeed, he used the very same
19 propaganda techniques as was used in Rwanda and had been well tested in
20 many other places, to create the environment of coercion, spread fear and
21 all the other things that Ms. Biersay has just been explaining to you.
22 As the Appeals Chamber in the Nahimana case has been made clear,
23 the principal consideration is the meaning of the words in their specific
24 context. This is found in the Nahimana appeals judgement at
25 paragraph 701.
1 Now, let's hear what the accused said about 20 years ago in the
2 context of the conflict. Some of this -- this is a compilation from a
3 number of intercepts that I admitted into evidence in the case, and I'll
4 give the exhibit numbers afterwards, and they reflect the intent of the
5 accused and the kind of things that he said at the time.
6 And I think I said "intercepts." They are videos.
7 [Video-clip played]
8 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Our Western enemies are attempting
9 to carry out a new genocide against the Serbian people. Brother and
10 sister Serbs, it is our task to stop it, and we are sending this message
11 to our enemies. Not only shall we avenge the present victims, but we
12 shall avenge the previous ones too, when they dared to put the Ustasha
13 knife under the Serbian throat again."
14 "But outside today's shrunken Serbia, the Serbian people's lives
15 are under threat. The new Ustasha chief, General Franjo Tudjman, has
16 unsheathed the Ustasha dagger, sharpened it and held it to the throat of
17 the Serbian people. Serbian men and women are trying to save their very
18 skins there."
19 "There can be no life in the territory of Kosovo and Metohija for
20 those families whose members are serving in the Ustasha armed forces, the
21 Ministry of the Interior of Croatia or the National Guards Corps."
22 "We say to them: We shall take revenge for each Serbian life,
23 and we shall also ask them to pay for crimes -- also for crimes in recent
25 "When revenge is taken, the revenge is blind, and many innocent
1 Croats will suffer."
2 "The Serbian people of Bosnia and Herzegovina will never
3 recognise the independence of this new Jamahirija."
4 "Bosnia and Herzegovina will never be an independent and
5 sovereign state. It will rather bathe in rivers of blood."
6 "Muslims and Croats do not represent a threat for us for a long
7 time already. Only brothers and sisters, Serbs, there should not be
8 hesitating, waiting or truce. The next time they strike, we should
9 finish them off so they never strike back."
10 MR. MARCUSSEN: Your Honours, "rivers of blood," "finish them off
11 so they never come back," "revenge is blind," "innocent Croats will
12 suffer," these were the kinds of things the accused advocated at the
13 time. This had a profound impact on the implementation of the JCE, as
14 Ms. Biersay has explained in much more detail. The clips we have seen
15 come from the following exhibits: P1003, P2, P331, P14, P350, P396, P395
16 and P18. The excerpts are included at the end of the binders that were
17 given to Your Honours today.
18 Interestingly, there are also other parallels between the accused
19 and Nahimana. Nahimana was one of the founders of an extremist Hutu
20 party, the CDR. The accused found it an extremist party. The CDR
21 mobilised a militia. The accused had the SCP militaristic organisation
22 as part of the SRS. Nahimana's militia forces were deployed together
23 with other groups in Rwanda, where they committed mass atrocities.
24 SRS/SCP volunteers were deployed along with other Serb forces and
25 participated in the commission of ethnic cleansing in the areas that we
1 have been discussing in these submissions.
2 The importance of the accused's contribution is maybe reflected,
3 when it comes to volunteers, in a brief overview of some of the areas
4 where the accused's forces and vojvodas were deployed.
5 We have prepared this demonstrative exhibit, which is a map. The
6 orange flashes indicate the crime base and municipality areas in the
7 indictment. The red squares indicate places where SRS/SCP units were
8 deployed, and the purple spots indicate -- or the pink spots indicate
9 where vojvodas and units were deployed. As I said, this is only part of
10 some of the evidence, and it's only to illustrate the degree of
11 deployment of SRS/SCP volunteers. We are not having another overlay with
12 the six strategic goals and the accused's line, but Your Honours will, of
13 course, notice that all these areas are strategic locations that were
14 fought over heavily by Serb forces.
15 In light of the time, Your Honours, I will simply round up by
16 saying that it is clear that there is evidence on record from which a
17 Trial Chamber could find that there is a basis to convict the accused.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You have two minutes left. Two
19 minutes and thirty seconds. That's quite a lot of seconds.
20 MR. MARCUSSEN: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 And simply submit that the accused's motion for acquittal should
22 be dismissed.
23 Your Honours, that concludes our submission, and -- but I would
24 make one final request.
25 The accused has now been given an hour to respond. I believe he
1 has 48 or 46 minutes left. I would note that it is clear from the
2 Appeals Chamber's jurisprudence in the Bajaguisa [phoen] case and in the
3 Deronjic case that when a party replies to a response to a motion, that
4 party cannot raise new issues for the first time. So I hope that the
5 accused will simply respond to what we have been saying and not use this
6 opportunity he has been given to come up with entirely new arguments.
7 And if he does, I hope Your Honours will intervene.
8 Thank you, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,
10 Mr. Marcussen.
11 Mr. Seselj, you now have 48 minutes. You expressed the wish to
12 speak after the Prosecutor. We granted you the request, being of the
13 view that you were bound to reply to what the OTP had said. So we'll
14 make sure that you keep within the bounds of what the Prosecutor said.
15 This is not the time to raise new issues, issues that wouldn't have been
16 dealt with before.
17 So you may proceed, Mr. Seselj. We will be listening to you with
18 great care.
19 [Defence Reply Submission]
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honours, over the past two
21 days the representatives of the OTP have behaved as if, over the past
22 three years, no trial has been taking place here, as if numerous
23 witnesses of the OTP have not marched through the courtroom, and as if
24 those witnesses have not been dismasked here as being false witnesses who
25 perjure themselves.
1 A few years ago, I filed a criminal report to the President of
2 the Tribunal because of the false testimony against 40 witnesses whom the
3 Prosecution led in this case. Your Honours, you have all seen those
4 witnesses who perjured themselves here. Nothing remains of their
6 You have witnessed a comparison between the statements written by
7 the OTP and their previous statements provided to the Muslim or Croatian
8 authorities, and then we have had a number of witnesses who have
9 confirmed here in the Chamber that the OTP forced them, blackmailed them,
10 imposed certain statements onto them that they had to sign, and so on and
11 so forth. This OTP methodology is very well known to the general public.
12 The OTP blackmailed people and they threatened them with prosecution.
13 The Prosecution bribed people by promising them accommodation in third
14 countries, a salary, money. Some have received that, and the others
15 haven't. Those who haven't received all those things turned against the
16 OTP. We've seen all that here.
17 Over the past two days, the Prosecution has also invoked a number
18 of 92 ter statements. They have also invoked some previous statements of
19 those witnesses who testified viva voce and who said totally different
20 things in the courtroom.
21 All these are methods that in the modern-day judicial system
22 should not be allowed. In The Hague Tribunal, everything goes when the
23 OTP is in question.
24 Something interesting has happened here. The OTP gave up on some
25 of the charges in the indictment, and they have not informed either you
1 or myself about that. In the indictment, they charged me with direct
2 perpetration of crimes by way of hate speech in three locations.
3 Yesterday and today, they only mentioned two places. They have tacitly
4 omitted Zvornik because the OTP must not refer to the witness who made up
5 the rally of the SRS in March 1992 and he spoke of the rally that
6 happened two years before. He falsified the words that I apparently
7 uttered at that rally, although that speech is very well known through
8 the media. The OTP gave up on those charges, hoping that neither I nor
9 you would notice that.
10 Furthermore, when it comes to Vukovar, you saw, Your Honours,
11 that the Protected Witness 027 was discredited once already in the Mrksic
12 case. This witness appeared here. He testified in closed session, and
13 again he was impeached here. I insisted, and then you confirmed,
14 Your Honours, that it was obvious that some parts of his alleged diary
15 were added on later, the letters were of a different size, and the pen
16 used was of a different kind.
17 The Prosecution made up rallies -- my rallies in Vukovar during
18 the war and my speeches in Vukovar during the war.
19 On a number of occasion, I shared my opinion about Ustasha with
20 you. I am proud of everything that I said then, and I'm prepared to
21 repeat all of my speeches even today. But I did not deliver any speeches
22 in Vukovar. There were no conditions in place for me to deliver any
23 speeches, because fighting was going on, people were dying from the enemy
24 fire. The witnesses here confirmed the case of a man who was killed from
25 mortar fire in my immediate vicinity there. So this participation of
1 mine is completely fabricated.
2 As far as Hrtkovci is concerned, there was no attack. It is
3 true, when Mr. Marcussen referred to the Krajisnik case, paragraph 319,
4 where it says that the Appeals Chamber, in the crime of deportation, is
5 not limited only to the physical force, but includes threat of force or
6 coercion such as that caused by fear or violence, duress, detention,
7 physical oppression, or abuse of power against such person. But, again,
8 those things did not happen.
9 I held a pre-election rally in Hrtkovci, as I did in a number of
10 other places in Serbia. Even if what I said was a crime, I actually
11 promised that I would be committing crime in the future if I ever came
12 into power. There was no force or a threat of force in order to carry
13 out deportation, and nobody was deported. Nobody fled Hrtkovci. Those
14 who exchanged property would sometimes travel to Croatia several times in
15 order to find the best solution for themselves. So, in other words, my
16 words cannot be denied, because my speeches have been published in my
17 books. But there are things that false witnesses added to my speeches,
18 and the OTP is still using that. Why Mr. Marcussen or Ms. Biersay didn't
19 say that I advocated the killing of all children from mixed marriages,
20 the dissolution of all mixed marriages, and so on and so forth?
21 A reference to Nahimana and the International Tribunal for Rwanda
22 is totally misplaced. The crimes which were processed there happened
23 subsequently to the alleged crimes ascribed to myself. You cannot do
24 things retroactively. You cannot invoke things retroactively to the time
25 where I allegedly committed my crimes. If I said that I did, the
1 Prosecution will say that I admitted crimes, because that's how they
2 understand everything literally. They don't understand the whole thing.
3 At the time when I may have committed my crimes, I didn't know
4 that there was case law of Rwanda which prosecuted those crimes. He
5 compared Nahimana and its radio with the Greater Serbia. That has
6 nothing whatsoever to do with me. When interviews were done with
7 Nikola Poplasen, and when he issued the statement against me, they should
8 have resolved that situation then. What do I have to do with a newspaper
9 that Poplasen published in Banja Luka? We were two parties, proponents
10 of one ideology, but we were registered in two different places. So this
11 is nonsense. What has that got to do with anything? In other words, we
12 cannot speak about any personal perpetration of crimes.
13 For two hours, the Prosecution pestered us yesterday, and I
14 sometimes rejoiced when I heard the quotations from my speeches from
15 1989, 1990 and 1991. Whatever you showed us just a little while ago, the
16 clips that we saw as part of the OTP arguments, all that was recorded in
17 1991. I recognised Romanija the 6th of May, 1991, the Day of St. George,
18 a year before the war broke out in Bosnia. Romanija is near Sarajevo.
19 That's in Bosnia. And I repeated over and over that Bosnia should not
20 secede because there would be a bloodshed.
21 Croatia also should not have seceded, like Tudjman wanted it to
22 do. Everybody who resided in Yugoslavia knew that it was impossible for
23 Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina to secede from Yugoslavia in a peaceful
25 First of all, the borders that existed among the federal units
1 were arbitrary borders. Even the Communist laws did not approve of them.
2 Croatia did not enter into Yugoslavia as a state. Therefore, it could
3 not leave Yugoslavia as a state.
4 When the first Yugoslav state was being created, it was created
5 when the Kingdom of Serbia united with Vojvodina and Montenegro and with
6 the improvised state of Slovenians, Croats and Serbs. On both sides,
7 there was one Serbian state. On the one side, there was a completely
8 Serbian state, and on the other side, there was a state that compromised
9 Slovenians, Croats and Serbs. And now somebody's going
10 to [indiscernible] over the Serbian collective rights and issue this
11 decision on the secession because they are more numerous than the Serbs
12 there, and that could not be implemented without a bloodshed.
13 I was a prophet, but nobody listened to me, nobody treated me
14 seriously, and that's a big mistake. Everybody who did not treat me
15 seriously fared badly, fared fatally, and not only in this case.
16 The OTP yesterday insisted - that was Mr. Marcussen in this
17 particular case - on the principle tu quoque. I never claimed that
18 crimes committed by the Serbs can be justified by the prior crimes
19 committed by the Croats and the Muslims, but I insisted that that was
20 what happened. I didn't mean to justify the Serbian crimes. I just
21 wanted to draw your attention to the circumstances under which such
22 crimes happened. I wanted to demonstrate to you that those crimes were
23 not a part of some previously-designed plan, a plan designed by the
24 Serbian authorities. It was just a reaction to the crimes committed by
25 others. Except for crimes committed by Arkan in Zvornik, no other crimes
1 happened before the convoy of the JNA was killed in Tuzla, and that was
2 done pursuant to a previous agreement. Over 150 young soldiers were
3 killed on that occasion, and that's the problem.
4 Herein lies the problem: There was no persecution of Muslims in
5 Zvornik until the moment when an influx on Serbian refugees came from
6 Tuzla and other areas. A huge flood of displaced Serbs also flooded
7 Serbia, and that's when I remember the principle of retorsion as one of
8 the partial solutions for such a situation.
9 I'm not justifying any of my acts. I'm just raising an issue
10 here. I'm asking: How come that the OTP did not deal with similar
11 crimes on all sides in a similar way? Why no Muslims from Tuzla were
12 ever tried? Why nobody from Sarajevo was ever tried? Why nobody from
13 Zagreb, any of the Croats from there, was ever tried?
14 The Croats expelled 300.000 Serbs, and nothing happened, because
15 it was their historical right to prosecute Serbs because America, the
16 European Union and the NATO gave them that right. And if I call for
17 retorsion on the opposing side, I do it with a hate speech. I'm not
18 justifying my acts, but the principle of retorsion does exist in the
19 international public law.
20 The interpretation that the principle of retorsion cannot be
21 applied to civilians is of a recent date. Some older theories justify
22 the principle of retorsion for everybody, and the practice shows that.
23 Remember the principle of retorsion against the [indiscernible] Germans
24 in Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia, also against the Germans. Let me not
25 even mention other examples. This is the principle of retorsion. It is
1 a very unpleasant principle, I agree, but why did you not convince the
2 Serbian general public and the global general public that you are
3 objective and that you apply the same rules to everybody?
4 Look how many Serbs were tried here and how many others all
5 together, because you are an anti-Serb OTP and this is an anti-Serb
6 tribunal, because you did not apply the same yard-stick to all. Why did
7 you not study the speeches made by Croatian politicians? You had a
8 Croatian member of Parliament who, in public, used Hitler's salute. Why
9 didn't you study the speeches of Muslim politicians?
10 So let us see who was louder, who was more extreme, who was more
11 vehement. You think you can take things out of a historical context; my
12 own speech, for instance.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Trial Chamber is telling
14 you that this is not within the parameters of Rule 98 bis. You're now at
15 the stage of closing arguments.
16 This is what we would like to know: To what extent would the
17 Prosecutor's case not allow a reasonable trier of fact, based on the
18 Prosecution's evidence, that you may be found guilty? This is what is of
19 interest to us. The rest has been said by you thousands of times, so do
20 not waste your time.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, that is the core of the
22 matter, Mr. President. You witnessed it here, and sometimes you, the
23 Judges, were participants as well in unmasking false witnesses.
24 Sometimes you were the ones who unmasked these false witnesses; it wasn't
25 only me. I can give you examples of that as well.
1 Secondly, look at what happened here.
2 Yesterday, Mr. Marcussen showed a video-clip of some interview of
3 mine, where I say that the volunteers of the Serb Radical Party in
4 Zvornik were commanded by Vojvoda Dragan Cvetinovic, Stene [phoen]. That
5 is what I said in 1993 in some interview, and that is correct. And then
6 Mr. Marcussen says that the volunteers of the Serb Radical Party were
7 commanded by Branislav Vukovic -- or, rather, Miroslav Vukovic. And
8 Ms. Biersay, soon after that, says the volunteers of the
9 Serb Radical Party were commanded by Zoran Rankic. Who is the crazy one
10 here? Is it me?
11 Yes, Dragan Cvetinovic, nicknamed Stene, later on I proclaimed
12 him a Chetnik vojvoda. He commanded the volunteers of the Serb Radical
13 Party in Zvornik, and he is not on any list of any perpetrators of
14 crimes. He's also not on any payroll of the Crisis Staff in Zvornik,
15 because the volunteers returned on the 26th of April, when Kula Grad
17 Miroslav Vukovic was interviewed as a suspect by the OTP. The
18 OTP did not provide me with that recording or transcript.
19 Miroslav Vukovic, himself, gave this to me, and I published it in my
20 book, "The Hague Instrumentalisation of False Witnesses." He
21 explained -- when he came to Zvornik, he explained what it was that he
22 did there, and he did not come as a volunteer. A group of them were
23 working there as security guards of the Alumina factory there. They have
24 that there.
25 Zoran Rankic was here in court, and he testified, saying that he
1 was not in Zvornik at the time at all. Recently, a month ago, you
2 admitted into evidence - I mean, I didn't even want to state my views on
3 that - Topola's statement to the police of Republika Srpska. And he
4 said, on the 26th of April, he arrived in Zvornik together with
5 Zoran Rankic, and he called him the commander of the forces of the
6 Serb Radical Party. He spoke in that way about Rankic so that he would
7 disassociate himself from the Serb Radical Party; Topola, that is. And
8 you saw here, from documents provided by the OTP, that Rankic resigned
9 already in December 1992.
10 This is a preconceived labyrinth, and now we are going to see who
11 is going to swim out of it. This time it is the OTP that is going to
12 drown in it, but nobody has told them about this yet.
13 Yesterday, we heard that Arkan commanded all the Serb forces in
14 Zvornik. That is an absolute fabrication. Arkan never commanded JNA
15 units. Arkan was paid by the Crisis Staff because the Crisis Staff did
16 not trust the JNA units. The JNA was passive in Bijeljina, so they were
17 afraid that they would be passive in Zvornik as well. So they gave
18 money, a lot of money, to Arkan so that he would help them. Then Arkan
19 launched an attack with the local territorials. He was hit smack in the
20 face, and then he had to withdraw. It was only in the afternoon that the
21 JNA set out with their forces that included the volunteers of the
22 Serb Radical Party.
23 You had General Stankovic here as well. He testified stating
24 that he personally conducted an investigation in relation to these crimes
25 of Arkans in Zvornik, and he testified about the post-mortems,
1 exhumations, and so on. Had the JNA not withdrawn from Zvornik, this
2 investigation would probably have been brought to an end.
3 Look further on. The OTP says that Kameni, Kinez and Topola
4 committed a crime at Grabovo, near Ovcara, and that all three of them are
5 volunteers of the Serb Radical Party. We have clarified that a hundred
6 times here. According to the judgements of the District and
7 Supreme Courts in Belgrade, it was obvious that Kameni was not at Grabovo
8 at all.
9 All of the witnesses who testified here said that Kinez
10 throughout wore a five-pointed red star on his cap, and no volunteer of
11 the Serb Radical Party would ever do that.
12 Also, a video-clip was shown, showing Topola. Witness 051
13 recognised him. Topola is wearing white belts and shoulder straps of the
14 military police and a cap with a red five-pointed star, and the OTP is
15 behaving as if none of that ever happened. They are banging on about
16 this, as we would say colloquially, and they keep going on banging on
17 about this, la la la, as if nothing had ever happened.
18 On the basis of documents, one cannot only take out what pleases
19 you. And even if you make that kind of selection, you see that it
20 amounts to nothing and that you cannot achieve anything in that way.
21 Sarajevo. How many times did we clarify that? First of all, we
22 saw that all false witnesses who testified about the locations around
23 Sarajevo were crushed here in the courtroom. You saw that no crimes
24 could be proved of Slavko Aleksic, Brne, or Vidovic. If there were
25 crimes, perpetrators were other individuals, and I'm not going into all
1 of that. The three of them were not volunteers at that point in time,
2 sent by the Serb Radical Party from Serbia. No, they were defending
3 their own town of Sarajevo, where they were born. They were not
4 attacking Sarajevo; they were defending it.
5 However, have you this prejudice that it's only the Croats who
6 are defending themselves, because it's theirs, and that the Muslims are
7 defending themselves. That is not correct. Serbs were protecting
8 themselves in the territory of the Croatian federal unit and in the
9 territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
10 Yesterday, the Prosecution admitted that in Herzegovina, we had
11 two units. Ms. Biersay intentionally pointed out that Bozidar Vucurevic,
12 the then president of the Municipal Assembly of Trebinje, appealed for us
13 to send volunteers, and he -- and she said that that was done so that we
14 would attack Trebinje. That is not true. They were stationed in
15 Grabovo, and they were patrolling the area of Bubanj between the
16 municipalities of Trebinje and Dubrovnik. This was an area that was
17 predominantly Serb-populated, but it was under-populated anyway. For
18 economic reasons, Serbs moved out at the time. From an economic point of
19 view, it was a very poor region.
20 We established here, on the basis of the statements of several
21 witnesses, that Oliver Denis Baret was head of the volunteers in Mostar,
22 and we also established that he left with the JNA on the 19th of May. On
23 the 25th of May, he was with me in Podgorica when a hand-grenade was
24 thrown at me, and he was one of the persons who was most seriously
25 wounded by that hand-grenade.
1 Miroslav Vukovic came sometime in mid-April to Zvornik, and he
2 left, and he was together with me in Podgorica in May as well. He was
3 wounded too. When you see that document that you had obtained and that
4 was published in my book, when I declared him a vojvoda, I mean
5 Miroslav Vukovic, I explained that that is because of his wartime merit
6 in Slavonia. There is no mention of Zvornik. Also, he was very composed
7 in Podgorica, so he kicked this grenade underneath a car, but 62 persons
8 were wounded. But it would have been a lot worse had he not been so
9 composed. The OTP knows about all of this, and, at my own request, they
10 photocopied that entire book of mine. I assume that they remember at
11 least that.
12 As for possible crimes at Sutina and Uborak, Lipovaca, where were
13 volunteers of the Serb Guard there? When did these crimes happen? When
14 the JNA withdrew, then the Muslims started an uprising behind the backs
15 of the Serb forces. Until then, they were quiet, loyal. They did not
16 interfere in the conflict, and they lived a good life. Then, upon
17 somebody's orders, they started an uprising, and the Serb front-line
18 broke. Chaos prevailed. Uborak, Sutina and Lipovaca were scenes of
19 crimes, but there were no volunteers of the Serb Radical Party there.
20 You had your own witness here, Stoparic, saying that Vakic came
21 with 19 people, offering Novica Gusic, the commander of the
22 Nevesinje Brigade -- offering help, that is, believing that if he helped,
23 he would at least bring half of the people from Bubanj. However, Gusic
24 was rather panic-stricken, and he said, Don't go anywhere. Please go
25 into combat straight away if you really do want to fight. Four of these
1 men were killed, three were wounded. These are terrible losses for such
2 a small group of people. And now they went out to rape and kill?
3 Yet again, the Prosecutor repeats that it was the Serb forces
4 that attacked Nevesinje. How could they attack Nevesinje when
5 90 per cent of the population was Serb anyway?
6 You had Sulejic here, a member of the SPO, who was at
7 Boracko Jezero, and he confirmed that it was impossible for the
8 volunteers of the Serb Radical Party to have been there.
9 You also had that false witness Dabic, who said in his statement
10 that volunteers came from Serbia and that they carried my photographs and
11 Draskovic's photographs. Everything was spelled out in relative terms
12 here. Some people told them that, he was told this by people at a barber
13 shop and so on. There are so many stupid things that you base your
14 indictment on.
15 Now, yet again Ms. Biersay, I think, said that Arkan took part in
16 war developments in the area of Nevesinje. He actually never showed up
17 there. Arkan's men were never there. She also said Red Berets. That's
18 not correct. That was clarified here, that the unit of the
19 2nd Cavalry Brigade had red berets as part of their uniform, and that was
20 it. Like in Zvornik, the unit that came from Pancevo under the command
21 of then Major Stupar, who was later a colonel, wore red berets. That
22 unit withdrew as soon as the stronghold of Kula Grad fell.
23 You've confused many dates, and many years as well, and then you
24 say that I said somewhere that I was supreme commander of the guerrilla
25 forces of the SRS, and all sorts of things like that.
1 We have established here, nevertheless, and your own expert
2 contributed to that, Theunens, your very own employee from the OTP, on
3 that 1st of October we sent volunteers only to Eastern Slavonia to defend
4 Serb villages, illegally crossing the Danube, and it was also established
5 how we obtained weapons with the assistance of retired
6 General Dusan Pekic and so on. That's how I behaved in the media.
7 From the 1st of October onwards, you haven't got a single
8 statement of mine about my own command function or any kind of troops
9 from the Serb Radical Party. From the 1st of October onwards, volunteers
10 were only within the JNA.
11 And also you have a lot of evidence about me speaking against any
12 kind of paramilitary formations. I know that paramilitary formations are
13 not something that should be supported or that should exist in the first
14 place. Until the JNA entered the conflict, we had to defend Serb
16 You also lied yesterday when you said that the volunteers of the
17 Serb Radical Party in Borovo Selo killed 12 Croatian policemen, a blatant
18 lie on your part. Croatian policemen, after the cease-fire was agreed
19 upon, attacked an almost 100 per cent Serb village, Borovo Selo, and
20 immediately they killed one volunteer, the only one who was from the SNO,
21 Borislav Milic, the only one there. He was not even armed. When the
22 rest of them saw what was going on, they took up weapons, they responded
23 with gun-fire, and of course it was their heroic hearts that prevailed.
24 Although the Croatian policemen were far more numerous, they were saved
25 by the JNA. Officially, they reported they had 12 casualties. According
1 to our information, there were a lot more. They also had Kurd
2 mercenaries that they never reported on as being casualties.
3 In Ovcara, exactly 200 prisoners were executed. 193 were
4 identified. It was impossible to identify seven of them. Why? Because
5 they were Kurds or some other foreign mercenaries, and that's why it is
6 impossible to identify them. Croats did not report on Kurdish victims.
7 They secretly buried them, and they were happy that they did not have to
8 pay blood money to them.
9 Further on, who caused this war? That is the key question. You
10 keep accusing Serb political leaders and military leaders and police
11 leaders, that they set up a joint criminal enterprise, that they had a
12 criminal intent, criminal plans, designs and purposes. Why? Because
13 they were defending a state that already existed, from the point of view
14 of a legal system, the SFRY, the former Yugoslavia. Criminals were those
15 who tried to have Croatia secede, to have Bosnia and Herzegovina secede.
16 They were the ones who established a joint criminal enterprise. It was
17 the duty of each and every citizen of Yugoslavia, the constitutional duty
18 of every citizen of Yugoslavia, to oppose that.
19 According to the then valid Law on National Defence, all
20 political organisations had their own role within the defence system, and
21 that is why patriotic political parties, not only the Serb Radical Party,
22 in Serbia organised volunteers and sent them to the JNA. It is only
23 traitors from pro-Western political parties that did not do that. They
24 should have been tried for not having done so.
25 When imminent threat of war was declared, everybody was supposed
1 to fight against the Croatian separatists. Croatian separatists are
2 Ustashas, traditionally. Yes, that is a very ugly term, but Tudjman was
3 proud of that term. His Constitution says, in its preamble, that the
4 independent state of Croatia, from the Second World War, as Hitler's
5 satellite, was an expression of the historic aspirations of the Croatian
6 people. They were beating themselves in the chest, proud of their
7 Ustasha symbols.
8 Here, you said that I was saying that all of Bosnia was Serbian.
9 It will be Serbian some day. It cannot go on existing this way. Do you
10 think that Croatia will manage to go on with the present-day borders? No
11 way. As soon as we get the EU, NATO and America off our backs,
12 everything is going to become different. Your bosses are aware of that.
13 That's why I'm in their way, because I do not want to bow my head before
14 the new global order, before globalism, nondualism; never.
15 A good part of my -- of their speech the Prosecutor dedicated to
16 smearing the traditions of the Serbian Chetnik Movement, and they
17 proclaimed the Chetnik organisation from the Second World War as a crime
18 organisation. The Serbian Chetnik Movement is the pride of the entire
19 Serbian people. Only Communists proclaim Chetniks as criminals and the
20 enemies of the Serb people.
21 The Chetnik Commander Drazen Mihajlovic, who was a general, was
22 decorated with the highest American decoration, the Congressional Order
23 of Honour. That was Drazen Mihajlovic for you.
24 You are attacking me here because of the Chetnik symbols. Almost
25 all Chetnik symbols of today are official symbols of Serbia; all of them,
1 save for the skull. And you could see in the evidence that us
2 Serbian Radicals did not insist on the skull. We produced many symbols
3 that relied on the Serbian national tradition, but not that. We knew
4 that the skull played a very significant role during the fight against
5 the Turks. We also knew that it was obsolete, that in the entire world
6 it was a symbol of pirates, and that's why we didn't insist on that. So
7 whenever you show a skull, it's a make-shift symbol, it's a very
8 simplified way, because they were never serially produced en masse, like
9 we did, for example, with the flags of the Serbian Radical Party and so
10 on and so forth.
11 You showed us a clip depicting a group of Serbian fighters, and
12 one of them is holding a bottle of moonshine or cognac. I don't know
13 what it was. And then you say, Well, here you have it, the drunken mob.
14 So what happened? The cameraman who was recording that, he was the one
15 who gave them the bottle, and you cannot have the whole company getting
16 drunk on that. But he wanted to take that.
17 And what about the line-up of soldiers with just one soldier with
18 a cockade and the Chetnik flag in the middle? They posed for the foreign
19 cameramen. How many foreign cameramen worked for the foreign
20 intelligence, how many foreign intelligence services participated in the
21 war against the Serbs? Many of them.
22 You said here that even the Chetnik Vojvoda Momcilo Djujic is
23 also a war criminal. How come the United States never wanted to
24 extradite him? Who was it who proclaimed him a war criminal? It was the
25 Communists, the Croatian Communists, because he had saved and tried to
1 save the Serbian people from the Ustasha knife. But there's no way you
2 can ascribe a single specific crime to him.
3 You say -- and you used the harshest words when you say that
4 Chetniks in the Second World War committed crimes. Yes, there were
5 crimes, but their number was negligible. Only one serious crime was
6 committed against Muslims, in Foca, in retaliation for Muslim crimes,
7 because Muslims there fought in Ustasha units. First, they killed
8 everybody in the Serbian villages, and then the Chetniks retaliated.
9 Only one Chetnik crime against the Croat civilians is known in the
10 village of Dugopolje. Up to 100 Croats were killed then, and it was
11 Bana Rokic [phoen], the Chetnik vojvoda, who did that. And there are no
12 other Chetnik crimes. There were crimes in Serbia, where villagers
13 fought against each other and where Partisans and Chetniks exterminated
14 each other. There was Kosta Pecanac's wing that collaborated with the
15 Germans, and that wing organised village groups of warriors, and as a
16 result of that Draze Mihajlovic personally issued an order for Pecanac to
17 be executed.
18 There were Muslims in the Chetnik Movement as well. There were
19 also Croats or Serb Catholics who were forced to declare themselves as
20 Croats, although they were not.
21 The vice-president of the Ravna Gora movement was
22 Mustafa Mulalic, who was tried in Belgrade together with
23 Draze Mihajlovic. Djuro Vilovic, one of the best Croatian writers from
24 Makarska, was also tried together with Draze Mihajlovic.
25 The Chetnik Vojvoda Ivo Bartulovic was shot by Partisans in 1945
1 near Split, and here you are providing us with materials that
2 Natasa Kandic or Vojin Dimitrijevic gave you, or materials that you
3 received from Croatian sources, as if by chance you employed so many
4 Croats here in the Tribunal. Wherever you turn, everybody is Croat. The
5 interpreters, translators, the officials, everybody is Croat. You took
6 your side from the very beginning. Why didn't you bring to trial any
7 Croatian politician? Is there any bigger joint criminal enterprise than
8 the secession of Croatia, a secret organisation of paramilitaries, secret
9 procurement of weapons from Hungary, Germany, from Eastern German depots,
10 and all over the place, including Singapore? Why didn't you process
11 that? Because you are an anti-Serbian tribunal, that's why.
12 You can ascribe whatever guilt to me, whatever you want. I'm
13 proud to be here. I'm proud that you have recognised me as an enemy of
14 America, of the European Union and NATO, as an enemy of globalism.
15 And you think that what you were reading yesterday, the
16 quotations from my speeches, and when you showed the clips of my
17 speeches, that I was bothered. You did me a service. You have reminded
18 the Serbian people of what I did over those years and how I gained my
19 reputation among the Serbian people. I fought for the Serbs.
20 Unfortunately, I was not successful in that fight because I did not have
21 a command position, I did not have a position of power. If I'd had a
22 position of power, things would have ended differently. Believe you me
23 when I say that.
24 Here, you speak about the expressions that I used, the terms that
25 I used in my public appearances, and you misinterpret every single thing.
1 When I issued warning speeches in 1989, 1990, 1991, you mixed them with
2 the speeches from after the war broke out. My speeches before the war
3 were much stronger than those that I delivered after. Why? Because I
4 wanted to avoid the war.
5 The war could have been avoided in just one way: Only if the
6 Croatian and Muslim political leaderships had given up on their desire to
7 have Croatia and Bosnia secede from Yugoslavia.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You have three minutes left,
9 Mr. Seselj. Do endeavour to finish within the time.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'll finish within the next three
12 I believe, and it is obvious, that the OTP has proven nothing in
13 this trial. They have not based their charges on anything, and the only
14 decision that you can make, Your Honours, by respecting your conscience,
15 by respecting your feeling of honour, by respecting your profession, is a
16 preliminary acquittal. You have to reject all the charges from the
18 I have mentioned my claim for compensation. In the meantime,
19 I can see that that has attracted a lot of attention in the Serbian
20 public as well as in the world, and some lawyers, who are already clear
21 that the indictment has been shattered to pieces and that nothing else
22 but acquittal can be at stake here, they are already thinking about the
23 amount of compensation. The famous lawyer, Toma Fila, who has
24 represented many accused, and as many as 40 lawyers from his office have
25 been engaged here, he thinks that I could ask for a compensation of
1 100 million Euro. But in financial terms, I'm a very modest person. I'm
2 not going to ask for that much. I am only asking for only 10 million
3 Euro, on a condition that the payment be made immediately and that we no
4 longer hear from each other. If there are any delays, if there are any
5 problems with that, then my ultimate request will be 100 million Euro.
6 I already have a lawyer in New York, Mr. Jonathan Libby, who is
7 going to sue the United Nations. And as I learn, I have the right to sue
8 every Judge and every Prosecutor in civil proceedings for compensation
9 based on the principle of their solitary responsibility because they
10 participated in a joint enterprise that ended in such a bad result.
11 Therefore, my request at the moment is 10 million Euro and
12 acquittal. And if there are any problems there, then my request and my
13 application will be for much more money.
14 And this is my final expression of goodwill. I have to admit to
15 everybody that the beautiful lady guard has made my day in the courtroom
16 so much nicer. I prefer her any day to male guards, who are not nearly
17 as pretty.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, the 98 bis
19 proceedings have come to an end.
20 Mr. Marcussen, what can you say that may be of use? Nothing.
21 That's what I thought.
22 Mr. Seselj, as per Rules, the Trial Chamber shall hand down an
23 oral decision. I can't tell you when this will take place, because as
24 you are very well aware of it, the Trial Chamber has to look at 1.300
25 exhibits, there are thousands of pages of transcripts, so this is going
1 to take us quite some time. Furthermore, the Chamber's staff have been
2 reduced drastically, so that I am not in a position to tell you that we
3 can hand down a decision tomorrow. It may take several weeks, if not
5 I just wanted to convey this to you because, of course, we have
6 to deliver a reasoned decision. It will be a long one, and it will
7 require quite a fair amount of time to write the decision. And then
8 we'll see the next step, depending on the decision. But, of course, I
9 can't anticipate that part of the proceedings because we have not yet
10 looked into the Prosecution's submissions, the various transcript pages
11 quoted by the OTP, we have not looked yet into yet what you said and the
12 other parts of the record that will be examined under close scrutiny.
13 This will take a lot of time. It is necessary. And I know that you've
14 been detained for over eight years, and this is an additional reason for
15 the Judges to examine every piece of evidence closely.
16 You said something that I cannot leave un-passed. You said that
17 you had an American lawyer. That's fine and well. They're good lawyers.
18 And apparently he's planning to sue the United Nations. And you said
19 that he might decide to sue the Judges. You know, nothing escapes my
20 notice. You can imagine that I had considered that situation. I did not
21 wait until the very last minute to study the problem. Of course, you are
22 entitled to everything. It is your perfect right, obviously. But you
23 said, and I must say that I had thought of that possibility myself.
24 This being said do you have anything else to say, Mr. Marcussen,
25 before we bring the hearing to an end?
1 MR. MARCUSSEN: Very briefly, Your Honours --
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have something to say,
3 Mr. President.
4 MR. MARCUSSEN: I just wanted to put on record that the
5 Prosecution's position is that the Rule 98 bis test, obviously, is to be
6 applied in this case, and it is applied, as it is in every other case --
7 to be applied, as in every other case, irrespective of how long the
8 accused have been detained.
9 Thank you.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
11 Yes, Mr. Seselj.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I've been in
13 detention for over eight years now. This is without a precedent. It has
14 never happened before in the civilised world, if only one accused was
15 indicted. There were such cases with several accused. This, in itself,
16 is a huge problem.
17 I have already requested, and that was in 2004, from the
18 Trial Chamber, whose member you were, Mr. Antonetti, and I'm sure you
19 remember, I wanted to be provisionally released until the beginning of
20 the trial. That was refused, and the argument was that I did not provide
21 sufficient evidence and guarantees that I would come to trial. I did not
22 want to appeal the decision, I didn't want to file any new requests.
23 However, since you mention now how long it will take for you to hand down
24 the decision, I would like to draw your attention to the fact that the
25 Rome Statute and Rules of Procedure and Evidence of the
1 Permanent Criminal Court has codified all of the rules of the
2 international procedural right and that that book of rules imposes an
3 obligation for the Trial Chamber to reconsider the decision on detention
4 at least once in six months. You are duty-bound by the Rome Statute and
5 the Rules of Procedure and Evidence because those are the only two
6 relevant codifications of the International Criminal Law. And based on
7 that, you should proceed -- you can do whatever. I'm not pleading with
8 you, I'm not applying for anything, I'm not filing any requests from you.
9 I'm just drawing your attention to this.
10 In my case, only one decision has been handed down, and that was
11 a decision on my arrest. I never saw a decision on detention. No term
12 of detention was ever set out. In the civilised world, the decision
13 contains the term of detention of up to three months, six months, or a
14 year, and no decisions have ever been reconsidered.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, I had already
16 addressed the issue before you did. I told you back then that further to
17 the Rules, you were entitled to apply for a provisional release. This is
18 Rule 65 of the Rules.
19 I remind you, and I've told you so already, that provisional
20 release can only be ordered by the Trial Chamber after the country --
21 after giving the host country and the state to which the accused seeks to
22 be released the opportunity to be heard, and only if it is satisfied that
23 the accused will appear for trial and, if released, will not pose a
24 danger to any victim, witness, or other person. And I told you that when
25 there is a motion for provisional release, so far, to date, for over 15
1 years now, the applicant for provisional release must accompany his or
2 her motion with a guarantee from a state. Failing that, there cannot be
3 any provisional release, and that's the crux of the matter.
4 So now you are speaking about a 2004 decision. I confess that I
5 do not have a very vivid memory of it, but I'll check.
6 For the Trial Chamber to rule on anything, it first needs a
7 decision and, secondly, it needs guarantees, and so far we have neither.
8 The ball is in your court. You can seize us of a written motion.
9 The Prosecution will reply, and then the Trial Chamber will rule.
10 This is what I wanted to tell you as to the law, but you know
11 that as well as I do.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I shall certainly
13 never submit that kind of request to you. I am just warning you about
14 the fact that these are violations of the Statute of Rome and also the
15 Rules of Procedure and Evidence of the Permanent International Criminal
16 Court. I'm just telling you that, nothing more. I'm just drawing your
17 attention to that. For me to plead with you to let me go, to ask the
18 treacherous mafia regime in Belgrade to provide guarantees, no way.
19 If the leader of the Libyan revolution, Moammar Gadhafi, or the
20 president of North Korea, Kim Jong-Il, or the president of Iran,
21 Ahmadinejad, or Hugo Chavez, if any one of them could issue a guarantee
22 to me, then I would ask them for a guarantee. From the pro-Western
23 regime of traitors in Belgrade, I'm not going to ask them for anything.
24 I'm not going to ask you for anything either. I'm just drawing your
25 attention to the fact that the codes of international procedural law are
1 being violated, and that that is what falls under the
2 Permanent International Criminal Court. That is your problem, not mine.
3 I can go on for a hundred years, but I'm not going to trample
4 upon any one of my principles.
5 You have a problem, Judges. My detention has been going on for
6 over eight years. The ball is not in my court, it's in yours.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
8 Since all the items have been dealt with, I adjourn the hearings,
9 and we will have a hearing for the 98 bis decision.
10 Thank you.
11 --- Whereupon the Rule 98 bis Hearing
12 concluded at 4.13 p.m.