1 Tuesday, 1 May 2001
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 10.00 a.m.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Ostojic.
6 MR. OSTOJIC: Yes, good morning Your Honour.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, you are here as -- in your capacity as
9 MR. OSTOJIC: That is correct, for Dragan Kolundzija.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. We have received a report, a very detailed
11 report from Dr. Krnetic in respect of your client. It indicates that he's
12 fit to continue trial, that he's capable of understanding the nature of
13 the charges, and of participating in the present case.
14 We accept the report and the trial will continue with the next
15 Prosecution witness. Thank you, Mr. Ostojic.
16 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Mundis.
18 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honour, there seems to be a little bit of
19 confusion with respect to some of the protective measures with some of the
20 Prosecution witnesses and if it would be helpful, the Prosecution would
21 like just to try to clarify the situation briefly at this point.
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, the clarification would be appreciated.
23 MR. MUNDIS: I would ask that we briefly go into closed session so
24 we can discuss the witnesses including their identity.
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, closed session.
1 [Private session]
13 Page 2492 redacted private session.
16 [Open session]
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let the witness make the declaration.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
19 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
20 WITNESS: WITNESS L
21 [Witness answered through interpreter]
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: You may sit.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Mundis?
25 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Your Honour I'd ask the usher to show this
1 document to the witness, please.
2 Examined by Mr. Mundis:
3 Q. Witness, if you could please take a look at that document and
4 verify that your name and date of birth are correct?
5 A. They are, yes.
6 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honour, I would ask that this be marked as the
7 next exhibit in order, substituting the letter M -- or substituting the
8 letter L for the letter M, to characterise this witness's pseudonym.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
10 MR. MUNDIS:
11 Q. Now, Witness, without mentioning your birth date, could you please
12 tell us the place where you were born?
13 A. In the village of Carakovo, municipality of Prijedor.
14 Q. And immediately prior to the war, Witness, where were you living?
15 A. Same place. That is, the village of Hambarine, Prijedor
16 municipality again.
17 Q. Witness, did you do compulsory service in the JNA at any point in
19 A. I did.
20 Q. When was that?
21 A. 1977 to 1978.
22 Q. Following your release from the active duty requirement of your
23 military service, did you do any reserve time in the JNA?
24 A. No.
25 Q. So at the time when the war started, were you a reservist or were
1 you a civilian?
2 A. Civilian.
3 Q. Witness, I'd like to draw your attention to 1992. At that time,
4 you were living in Hambarine; is that correct?
5 A. Yes, yes, that's right.
6 Q. In May of 1992, did there come a time when you became aware of an
7 incident at a checkpoint?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Can you describe that for the benefit of the Court, please.
10 A. I was not there, but I know that it happened on the 22nd when a
11 group of men, members of the Serb army headed for Ljubija, and there was a
12 checkpoint, that is where you get to Bosniak places, and there was a
13 checkpoint there. And they did it, they requested that they leave the
14 weapons but they refused. They turned away, and when they came back, they
15 opened fire and that is where I believe the misunderstanding started or
16 rather when this shooting began.
17 Q. Shortly after the shooting, did there come a time when Hambarine
18 came under attack?
19 A. No. The next day, the next day they requested that Aziz Aliskovic
20 surrender, he was the commander of the checkpoint. And when he refused
21 to, then sometime after 12.00, fire was opened, that is, it was then that
22 they began to fire projectiles at those Bosniak Muslim villages.
23 Q. Who, if you know, who was firing these projectiles at the Bosniak
25 A. Members of the Serb army.
1 Q. Where did you go once these Bosniak villages came under attack?
2 A. Well, first on the 23rd of May, that is when Hambarine fell, when
3 they took those localities, then people from that neighbourhood community,
4 from those villages, scattered around Carakovo and other Muslim villages.
5 There are five of them all together, and Hambarine being the sixth one.
6 Q. Witness, does this concentration of these six Muslim villages that
7 you've talked about, does it have a name, this area?
8 A. Yes, Brdo.
9 Q. What are the names of the six villages that make up Brdo?
10 A. Zecovi, Carakovo, Hambarine, Rakovcani, Rizvanovici, and Biscani.
11 Q. Now, Witness, after the attack on Hambarine, where specifically
12 did you personally go?
13 A. I went to the neighbouring forest which is part of the Carakovo
15 Q. Did this forest or area have a name?
16 A. Urovo.
17 Q. Did you see at the time that you were in the Urovo area, did you
18 see your father?
19 A. I did not, no. He came on to look for me afterwards, that is,
20 after the cleansing, they -- he came to look for me.
21 Q. Did he eventually find you?
22 A. Yes, he did.
23 Q. Do you recall approximately when you saw your father?
24 A. I did not see him then when these things were happening at
25 Hambarine, but when it was Carakovo, that is when it was, and it was two
1 months later on the 23rd of July.
2 Q. Do you recall what, if anything, your father told you on the 23rd
3 of July 1992?
4 A. To surrender because they would search the woods, and if they
5 found anyone there, that they would kill them.
6 Q. And did you, in fact, surrender to the Serb forces?
7 A. I did.
8 Q. Can you describe for the Court the circumstances surrounding your
10 A. Well, I -- when I came to the checkpoint, which is the hamlet of
11 Brkic, near Carakovo, on the 23rd of July I came there and I saw some
12 other people who had already surrendered so I reported to that checkpoint
13 where there were about seven Serb troops, and they told me to go and sit
14 down together with all those -- with those other Bosniaks who had
15 surrendered before me.
16 Q. You indicated those other Bosniaks, were all of those other people
17 who had surrendered Muslims?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And Witness, what ethnicity are you?
20 A. Bosniak, Muslim.
21 Q. When you arrived at this checkpoint with this other -- when this
22 other group of Bosniaks were present, do you recall approximately how many
23 people were there, how many Bosniaks were there?
24 A. About 20, up to 20. 20, roughly. I didn't count them, I mean.
25 Q. Where did you go? Where did this group of Muslims go?
1 A. We waited for a while until we were about 30 or 31, and then they
2 took us to the bus station in Zeger which is a hamlet where the town bus
3 stops. And we were there, and there we found some other men who had
4 surrendered and then two buses arrived and took us to Keraterm.
5 Q. Were any of the members of this group while you were waiting in
6 Zeger were any of the members of that group mistreated?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Can you describe --
9 A. Halid Dzenanovic and Zijad Sahovic from that group were beaten.
10 There wasn't time there, but they were beating people from the previous
11 group. We saw people who had been ill-treated and bloody, but during the
12 time we were there, they managed to beat only two.
13 Q. Witness, you indicated that two buses took the group to Keraterm,
14 do you recall approximately how many people were on those two buses?
15 A. There were two full buses, so I'd say 120, 130 men. There were
16 men who were sitting down, and there were people who were standing. It
17 was two urban transport buses.
18 Q. Did you know other people that were on the bus that you were on?
19 A. Yes, I did. I did know a number of them because they were people
20 from other villages, from Rakovcani, from Hambarine. They put them all
21 together, because as villages would fell, they would flee to other places
22 and ...
23 Q. Were all of the people that you saw on the bus from one of the
24 villages that make up the Brdo area?
25 A. Yes. Yes.
1 Q. Do you recall approximately what time and the date that you
2 arrived at Keraterm?
3 A. On the 23rd in the afternoon, sometime around 3.00, 1500.
4 Q. And that would be in the month of July 1992?
5 A. That's right.
6 Q. Can you describe for the Chamber what you saw and what happened to
7 the group upon your arrival at Keraterm?
8 A. First, we were halted at the gate, and there used to be a hut
9 where they searched people and took down the names of men who had
10 surrendered. Then we entered over the weigh bridge, because in front of
11 this reception booth, there was a weigh bridge and there was a group lined
12 up there to meet people who were coming.
13 So we crossed that and got on to a lawn and we all lie down there.
14 Q. Were any of the people that came with you on one of the two buses
15 mistreated upon your arrival at Keraterm?
16 A. Yes. Well, they beat people as they came up in passing. They
17 would kick somebody or hit with a rifle butt or something.
18 Q. And who were the people that were doing these acts of
20 A. I recognised only one man at this reception booth as he was taking
21 our names down, and I saw him in that reception hut.
22 Q. And who was that person that you recognised?
23 A. Nenad Banovic.
24 Q. Did this person Nenad Banovic have any nickname that you were
25 familiar with?
1 A. Cupo.
2 Q. Now, were you actually taken into the hut by the weigh bridge upon
3 your arrival?
4 A. No. They would come out, they had some papers, and they took down
5 the names, and the people who had their personal papers or perhaps
6 wrist-watches, cigarettes, valuables, and they took it all at that place.
7 Q. So these pieces of personal property were confiscated upon arrival
8 at the camp; is that correct?
9 A. It is.
10 Q. Now, Witness, did there come a time shortly after your arrival
11 that you were placed in one of the rooms at Keraterm?
12 A. No. We spent a while, about an hour, or an hour and a half, on
13 the lawn in front of it.
14 Q. Were you later moved into one of the rooms?
15 A. Yes, to Room 3, of the area number 3, that is -- and the lawn on
16 which we had lain before was right in front of it.
17 Q. Can you describe what Room 3 looked like when you first were taken
18 into that room?
19 A. It had been swept, there were wooden pallets there. It looked as
20 if somebody had already been there before us. The floor was wet, it was
21 swept, and the pallets were all lined up, and there were some stains on
22 the walls.
23 Q. What kind of stains were on the walls?
24 A. Well, as if blood stains, something -- something like that.
25 Q. At the time that you first arrived in Room 3, were there other
1 people staying in the room at that time?
2 A. No, it was empty.
3 Q. How many people were placed in the room when you first were taken
4 into the room?
5 A. Well, I don't know, 250, 270, but two more groups came from other
6 places, whether from other rooms or somewhere, but at any rate, more
7 people were arriving. As they would arrive there, they would put them in
8 that room.
9 Q. Do you know how many people were eventually detained in Room 3 at
11 A. Once when they were counted, it was 570. People were packed like
12 sardines. And there was -- and there was perspiration, so the walls were
13 perspiring, so it was very hot, and people licked those walls to get
14 something because there was no water.
15 Q. Was there anyone -- were any of the detainees -- was there a
16 detainee in the room who was responsible for that room?
17 A. Yes, the room steward, and they had selected him, Muharem Sivac.
18 Q. Who selected Muharem Sivac as the steward of the room?
19 A. Well, those Serb guards, guards in the camp. They picked out one,
20 they always did that, and they usually picked out people who were easily
21 recognisable, who were more conspicuous, who stood out by the colour of
22 the hair or something else, and they would pick out that one person,
23 single him out, and used him to call out the names of other inmates.
24 Q. Witness, as the steward of Room 3, did Sivac, Muharem have any
25 special responsibilities?
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 A. Yes. He was the link between the guards and us, the detainees.
2 Q. What do you mean by "the link"? What did he do?
3 A. Well, if they wanted to take somebody out and beat him and
4 suchlike, they would then tell them. That is, the guard would say,
5 "Commander of Room 3, get me that man." Or perhaps if they would ask for
6 a name, if they knew his name.
7 Q. Did Sivac, Muharem also maintain a list of the people that were
8 kept in that room?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Witness, can you describe for the Trial Chamber the conditions,
11 the living conditions, in Room 3 on the first two days that you were in
12 that room?
13 A. The conditions were dramatic. You could not go to the toilet.
14 You had no food. It was closed and it was very hot. So that it was
16 Q. Did you have access to water in the first two days that you were
17 in Room 3?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Were you allowed to leave Room 3 in the first two days that you
20 were there?
21 A. No, no. We did not come out.
22 Q. Did you have any toilet facilities to use in Room 3 for the first
23 two days that you were there?
24 A. No, a plastic vessel had been put in there, blue, a barrel, which
25 had been -- which had its upper part cut off, sawn off.
1 Q. Do you know approximately when that barrel was placed in the room
2 or was it there when you first got into the room?
3 A. No. It was put in there the second day.
4 Q. Witness, did there come a time when you were in Room 3 that other
5 detainees in that room were called out and mistreated?
6 A. Yes. There were people who were called out, beaten and brought
8 Q. Do you recall the first time that that happened when you were in
9 Room 3?
10 A. Two nights later, something like that.
11 Q. And Witness, who do you recall the names of the people that were
12 called out during the time you were in Room 3?
13 A. The room commander or steward, he was the link. He was standing
14 at the door, and when he was called "commander," and when he was ordered
15 by the guard to bring a man out, he would do that.
16 Q. Do you recall any of the people who were ordered out of the room,
17 the names of those people?
18 A. Yes. Samir Music, he was taken out, beaten up and brought back,
19 Mirhad Sehic.
20 Q. Do you recall anything -- do you recall the condition of Samir
21 Music when he was returned to the room?
22 A. He was beaten up so badly that he couldn't get up from the pallet
23 anymore, and he was later taken away.
24 Q. Who took him away?
25 A. The commander said he should come out, then he couldn't, and a
1 relative of his assisted him, Fatusk Music. He took him by the arm, and
2 when he left out, neither of them came back again.
3 Q. Did you ever see either of those two people after that day?
4 A. No.
5 Q. What about Sehic Mirhad, what happened to him when he was called
7 A. Yes, he was beaten up and taken over there, I think there was some
8 sort of a garage. When he recovered, he told us he was forced to lie over
9 a tyre and he was beaten on the back, and for three or four days, he could
10 hardly walk. He couldn't walk properly.
11 Q. Now, Witness, with respect to either of those beatings, did you
12 know which shift or shifts were on duty when those beatings occurred?
13 A. I don't know who was the commander of which shift, but they beat
14 people in both shifts. Only when Cupo Banovic's shift was on duty, they
15 took out people more.
16 Q. Now, Witness, you indicated that for the first two days you were
17 kept in Room 2 and not allowed to leave -- or Room 3, rather. Did there
18 then come a time when you were allowed out of Room 3?
19 A. Yes. On the third day, we went out on the grassy area and we lay
20 there again. And then some men would take out the barrel, two men would
21 be selected to take the barrel out and pour away what it contained to the
23 Q. While you were -- approximately how long were you outside on the
24 grass on that day?
25 A. We lay there for about two and a half to three hours. I couldn't
1 tell you exactly as no one had a watch on. And it was very hot. Then a
2 tank truck came with a hose and they would hose us over and then we would
3 return to the room.
4 Q. While you were outside on the grass, did you see anything with
5 respect to Sabid Sijecic?
6 A. No. That incident did not occur at that time.
7 Q. When did that incident occur?
8 A. After the massacre, we were outside, and as we were returning
9 after having been bathed, Banovic shot him in the hand.
10 Q. Can you describe how that came to be?
11 A. We were lying on the grass for a couple of hours when the tank
12 truck came and hosed us over. We stood up in a line and he raised his
13 hand to go to the toilet. He raised two fingers, and Banovic came up and
14 said "You Ustasha or balija, what do you want?" And when he raised his
15 hand, he shot him through the palm. We were close by and we heard as the
16 bullet shot through his hand and hit against the wall. He just fell and
17 held on to his hand with the other one.
18 Q. Now, Witness, you indicated on the third day you were taken out of
19 the room and a water tanker was brought in. On that occasion, did you see
20 someone who --
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Did you see someone on that day who was identified to you as Dusko
24 A. Yes. This Sehic told me that he used to work for him, and when
25 the tank went back, he came up to the tanker and he gave him some
1 cigarettes. They were super-filter cigarettes.
2 Q. Okay, Witness. I'd like to return to Sabid Sijecic for a moment.
3 After he was shot in the hand, where was he taken?
4 A. He was taken inside, and a man called Mehanovic bandaged his hand
5 with his T-shirt, and then the next morning the guard came and told him to
6 come out and he was taken out, and I don't know what happened to him after
8 Q. Did you ever see him again after he was taken out of the room?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Witness, did there come a time in the next day or so when there
11 was an intense amount of activity outside of Room 3?
12 A. I didn't understand you.
13 Q. Did there come a time, a day or so later, when you saw more
14 vehicles and more people and more activity and things seemed to be
15 happening outside of Room 3?
16 A. Yes, there were more vehicles than before and there were more
17 soldiers at the gates. They were singing. And one could intimate that
18 something was going to happen. One could smell meat being barbecued.
19 Q. Do you recall approximately how many soldiers or guards were in
20 the camp on that day?
21 A. A large number. It was dusk already, and more and more of them
22 were arriving, and the vehicles were passing by along an asphalt road.
23 They were driving up and down in front of this factory, what used to be a
25 Q. And the factory that you're referring to is actually the Keraterm
1 camp; is that correct?
2 A. Yes. Yes.
3 Q. Did there come a time on that evening when the detainees were
4 rounded back into Room 3 and the doors were locked?
5 A. Yes. Early in the evening, the detainees were put back in the
7 Q. Do you recall approximately what time that was?
8 A. I don't know. It was quite late at night, as we didn't have any
9 watches, but it was quite late in the evening.
10 Q. Had the sun already set?
11 A. Yes. Yes. It was dark. It could have been about midnight or
12 11.00 at night.
13 Q. Now, prior to the event that's been described as a massacre, did
14 you hear any gunfire before the massacre started on that night?
15 A. Yes, there was gunfire. There was gunfire before too, but more of
16 it on that particular evening.
17 Q. Did any of the gunfire before the massacre hit Room 3?
18 A. No. There was a vehicle that passed by up and down a couple of
19 times, and there was a short burst of fire opened into the windows of that
20 room. Then a little later, yelling and singing could be heard, and again
21 there were pebbles being thrown at the window and on the roof.
22 Q. And how long did the pebble sound last for?
23 A. A couple of minutes. The car seemed to have halted, then people
24 must have thrown the pebbles at the roof, and then the vehicle went on.
25 Q. What happened after that?
1 A. People started acting strangely. They got up. They started
2 shoving against one another. People were hitting each other against the
3 walls. They started tearing their clothes off. Some started crying,
4 others singing.
5 It was difficult to describe the situation inside. Then there
6 were some voices saying, "Don't approach the door," things like that.
7 Q. Witness, do you have any idea what started these people to act in
8 this way?
9 A. I think there was some teargas or something or some poisons so
10 that people started jumping around and behaving strangely.
11 Q. Could you smell anything unusual in the room that might lead you
12 to that conclusion?
13 A. Yes, the -- our eyes were stinging, and I sort of started to lose
15 Q. Witness, do you recall anything that happened with respect to the
16 door of the room?
17 A. When people were pushing against one another, somebody -- one of
18 the detainees broke down the door, and that is when we heard the first
19 burst from the light machine-gun that was about 20 metres away from the
20 door of Room 3, pointing at it.
21 Q. Approximately how long did that machine-gun fire at the front of
22 Room 3 last?
23 A. It wasn't just that machine-gun that was firing. There were some
24 infantry weapons being used and opening fire. When men broke down the
25 door, then the shooting became very intense.
1 Q. Do you know how long that shooting lasted for?
2 A. A couple of minutes, four or five minutes, roughly. Then there
3 would be a lull, then later I lost consciousness. When I came to, I heard
4 those bursts of fire again. This must have been the second time. And
5 then a third time. I thought it was doomsday. That is how it thundered
6 all over.
7 Q. Now, Witness, you indicated that you momentarily lost
8 consciousness. Can you tell us the state --
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. -- the condition in the room in those first few moments before you
11 lost consciousness?
12 A. One could hear crying, yelling. One could hear outside people
13 saying, "Hold on, don't let them go," as if they were catching people to
14 prevent them from escaping. One could hear the yelling of the guards
15 outside, and inside, some people were crying, others were escaping, and
16 that sort of thing.
17 Q. Witness, while this shooting was taking place, where were you in
18 relation to the front of the room, or the door of the room?
19 A. I was to the left. This room was in the shape of the letter L,
20 and I was in the left part of the room, to the left of the door as you
21 walk in. I could draw it for you and show it to you, if you wish.
22 Q. That's okay, Witness, but if you could tell us approximately in
23 metres how far you were from the door?
24 A. About 10 metres, then there was a corner there, and I was around
25 the corner.
1 Q. Is it fair to say you were towards the back of Room 3?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Did you see what was happening to the people in the front of Room
5 A. I saw that in the morning, because it was dark inside, and only
6 when it dawned did I see what had happened. During the night, I just
7 heard the screaming and the moaning.
8 Q. Okay, Witness. Let's return to that night. You indicated that
9 you lost consciousness for a brief period. What happened when you
10 regained consciousness? What did you see or hear?
11 A. I could feel -- behind me there was a wooden board that had been
12 broken down, and a man came from the toilet, holding on to my feet as if
13 he wanted to say something to me. In the meantime, he passed away, and in
14 the morning I saw that he had been hit in the neck area.
15 Q. You indicated a wall behind you. Was that a wall that separated
16 the room from the toilets?
17 A. Yes. There was a wooden board separating the toilet and the room.
18 Q. But was it possible -- this was a wall, was it not, around the
20 A. No. There was an opening there. When the hall used to be used,
21 one could go to the toilet there, but it was closed with a wooden board
22 and one could smell the stench when the toilet was blocked up, coming from
23 under the wooden board.
24 Q. But was it possible to access, to go into the toilet from Room 3?
25 A. Yes. The board was just positioned there to separate the toilet
1 from the rest of the room.
2 Q. What happened to that wooden board when the gunfire started?
3 A. It was broken down. Some people fled to the toilet. As one could
4 hear the screaming there, coming from there too, and this man who held on
5 to me had crawled out from the toilet.
6 Q. What happened to the people who had crawled into the toilet?
7 A. One could hear shots there too. I don't know whether there were
8 other people killed there but this particular man came from the area of
9 the toilet. He crawled back into the room. He crawled into the room
10 coming from the area of the toilet.
11 Q. Witness, approximately how many bursts of machine-gun fire did you
12 hear that night?
13 A. Three, three bursts of shooting.
14 Q. Approximately --
15 A. Three times they were repeated.
16 Q. Approximately how long did each burst of gunfire last?
17 A. I don't know, four or five minutes approximately. Because one was
18 in shock, so you couldn't really tell, but I know that the bursts of
19 gunfire came in three waves.
20 Q. Approximately how long was the interval between the waves of
22 A. A couple of minutes or so. Then one could hear some odd shots but
23 there would be intervals of a couple of minutes in between the stronger
24 bursts of fire, as men were escaping from the room through the door
25 outside. They needed air, so they rushed out.
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 Q. Witness, when the machine-gun fire eventually stopped that
2 evening, did you continue to hear any other types of weapons being fired?
3 A. Yes. Infantry weapons were fired a couple of times, so as the
4 night progressed, they moved away towards the gate.
5 Q. After the firing stopped that night, I assume it was still dark in
6 the room; is that correct?
7 A. Yes, it was still dark.
8 Q. Could you hear anything during that period before the sun came
10 A. Yes. One could hear the crying and the moaning of men. People
11 were calling out for help.
12 Q. The following morning, when you were finally able to see inside
13 Room 3, can you describe for the Court what you saw that morning?
14 A. It was a terrible scene to look at. I even saw some fingers.
15 There was blood on the walls going right up to the ceiling even. There
16 were still men who had been wounded lying down or sitting there, who
17 couldn't get up. It was a horrific scene to look at.
18 Q. Do you have any idea how many bodies were in that room that
20 A. I don't know. I just know there were a lot. Maybe over 200 men.
21 Q. Did there come a time, Witness, when you were taken out of Room 3
22 on that morning?
23 A. Yes. Yes. Later, we were taken out on to the grass in front
24 again, and we were told whoever lifts his head or moves would get a bullet
25 in his head.
1 Q. Was it difficult to leave Room 3 given the large number of bodies
2 that were in the room?
3 A. Yes. There were piles of bodies. The largest pile right in front
4 of the door, and so they had to move away a few bodies for people to be
5 able to come out and not to tread on them.
6 Q. Approximately how long were you on the grass outside of Room 3 on
7 that morning?
8 A. Three or four hours, approximately, quite some time. We spent
9 quite a long time outside.
10 Q. Did you see Sivac Muharem that morning?
11 A. Yes. I saw him later. When all this was cleaned up, when we
12 managed to go back into the room, I saw him standing at the gates with a
13 group of men.
14 Q. Witness, did you see who was doing the cleaning up in Room 3?
15 A. Also detainees, they were cleaning. And then a truck came driving
16 backwards in front of this hall, and they started cleaning it up.
17 Q. What happened to the bodies of the people who had been killed that
19 A. They were driven away on this truck.
20 Q. Witness, do you recall or have any idea how many people survived
21 that attack that night?
22 A. Quite a number survived, but among those survivors were wounded
23 people who were gradually examined and later on, they, too, were taken
24 away. Whoever had any traces of injuries, they were taken off. Then a
25 small van would come up. The bodies would be boarded on and the injured
1 and there was no canvas cover, and they would take them away.
2 Q. With respect to the people who were injured and taken away, did
3 you ever see any of those people again?
4 A. No. No.
5 Q. Did you see what happened to Sivac, Muharem on that morning or on
6 that day?
7 A. I said that I saw him near the gate when we were entering. When
8 we were told to go in, I saw him standing there with a group of men and he
9 didn't come back again to Room 3.
10 Q. Did you ever see him after that day anywhere else?
11 A. No.
12 Q. After Room 3 was cleaned, were you then returned to that room?
13 A. Yes. The pallets had been taken out. They had been thrown
14 outside. They were no longer there.
15 Q. Approximately how many men were returned to Room 3 after that
17 A. About half of the men. Out of the 570, maybe about half of them.
18 Then there were other men who pretended to be wounded and they would
19 occasionally be driven off. I remember a young man called Brakic, he was
20 hit in the lower leg. He didn't complain for two days, then the wound was
21 inflamed from the heat, then he started moaning, and he was told to go
22 out. He couldn't go out. His father took him out. He was together with
23 his father, boarded on to this small truck, and driven off. Damir Brakic
24 was his name.
25 Q. Did you ever see him again after he was driven off in this small
2 A. No.
3 Q. How about his father?
4 A. No.
5 Q. After Sivac Muharem disappeared, was there another detainee who
6 was placed in the position of steward of Room 3?
7 A. Yes. Ibrahim Dizdarevic.
8 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honour, I note the time. I was not sure, given
9 the late start if we were going to break at 11.00.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, we'll continue until 11.30.
11 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. Now, Witness, after the massacre and after the room had been
13 cleaned and after you had been returned to Room 3, how long did you stay
14 in that room?
15 A. We stayed there until the 5th of August, until sometime around
16 9.00 in the morning.
17 Q. Was there any kind of routine that the detainees in Room 3
18 followed after the massacre until the time when the camp was closed on
19 August 5th?
20 A. No, we did not, except that, again, they would take us out into
21 that lawn and order us to lie down, and then we would be taken back.
22 Q. Were you taken out and made to lie on the grass every day?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Approximately how long were you out on the grass?
25 A. Well, a few hours, for two or three hours, sometimes longer. And
1 after that, they'd wash us with the a cistern, with a hose.
2 Q. Now, Witness, did you know a person by the name of Sikiric in
4 A. I did not know him before that.
5 Q. Did you see him on the lawn in the grass in front of Room 3?
6 A. I saw him there when he gave the cigarettes to that Sehic, because
7 it was his worker. And I asked him, "Who's that," and he said it was
8 Sikirica, that they worked together and that he was his boss at the job.
9 Q. I may have mispronounced the name but I'm referring to a detainee
10 named Sikiric?
11 A. Sikiric. Yes, he was a waiter. He had been wounded in the leg,
12 if you mean Sikiric who was a detainee.
13 Q. Yes. Was -- did you also known a person by the name of Rakanovic
15 A. Rakanovic, yes.
16 Q. Did there come a time when you saw those two individuals on the
17 grass in front of Room 3?
18 A. That's right. Every day we would come out, they would fire
19 between their legs right on that lawn in front of the room, and it was
20 Nenad Banovic who did it.
21 Q. Did you see any time when those two individuals were wounded by
22 Nenad Banovic?
23 A. Yes. He fired at their feet from the back as they were lying down
24 on the grass, from a pistol.
25 Q. Witness, can you tell us, did you know Cupo Banovic from before
1 the war?
2 A. Yes, by sight, yes. I used to see him around. And when I arrived
3 in Keraterm, he was the first man I saw and recognised.
4 Q. Approximately how many times did you see Cupo Banovic in
6 A. Well, a number of times. Even on his time off, when it wasn't his
7 shift, he would come there. He had a small motorbike, and he'd come to
8 the camp and ill-treat the prisoners, beat them.
9 Q. How about Cupo Banovic's brother? Did you know him from before
10 the war?
11 A. No, no, I did not. But I heard from those others that he was his
12 brother, even though I never saw him approach the room. He was at the
13 gate but I never came close, and I do not remember seeing him in any
14 communication with detainees.
15 Q. How about Zoran Zigic? Did you know him from before the war?
16 A. Yes. He was a taxi driver.
17 Q. Did you ever see Zoran Zigic in the Keraterm camp?
18 A. Yes. I saw him on various occasions. He had a Mercedes car. I
19 don't know if it was his, but that is -- that was the car that he would
20 drive into the camp.
21 Q. Witness, did you know the identity of any of the other guards or
22 camp personnel in the Keraterm camp?
23 A. No.
24 Q. Were you aware of the identity of any other so-called visitors to
25 the Keraterm camp?
1 A. No. There were civilians too looking for detainees they used to
2 know. And these ones would take them out.
3 Q. Witness, can you describe for us the day that you left the
4 Keraterm camp?
5 A. It was on the 5th of August, around 9.00, that a soldier came and
6 called out the room stewards to come out to the door and that each one
7 should stand in the doorway of his room, and then one came with a list and
8 said that those men whose names had been called out should be taken out of
9 that room, and as he read out those names, people came out. Two buses
10 then arrived, picked them up and took them away.
11 Q. When the room stewards were reading out these lists, were you
12 inside Room 3 at that time?
13 A. I was, yes. We were all in the room.
14 Q. Approximately how many people were called out from Room 3?
15 A. Oh, about 30 or 40, I don't know. I mean the majority were from
16 Room 3, I mean of those who left.
17 Q. And do you recall approximately how many people got on these two
19 A. Well, some 120 men, perhaps more.
20 Q. Do you know the names of any of the people who were placed on
21 those two buses?
22 A. I do.
23 MR. MUNDIS: If I could have the usher show the witness an excerpt
24 from his ICTY statement of 19 November, 2000?
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
1 MR. MUNDIS: Mr. Usher, if you could provide copies to the Defence
2 as well?
3 Q. Witness, approximately halfway down the first page of the two-page
4 document you've been provided, there is a list of names and that continues
5 on to the second page. Can you look through that list for me, please?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Witness, does your signature appear on both pages of this document
8 at the bottom?
9 A. It does.
10 Q. Now, Witness, can you tell the Court who or what this list is?
11 Who are these people that are on this list?
12 A. Well, I made a list of men, there were about 60 of them or
13 something, and these are men who were taken away before, who were killed.
14 That is, people that I used to know personally. And this shows also
15 people who were taken out before and those men who were put on those two
17 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honour, I'd ask that this excerpt from the
18 witness's ICTY statement of 19 November, 2000 be admitted as the next
19 exhibit in order.
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Number?
21 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecution Exhibit number 36.
22 The name of the witness -- the paper with the name of the witness
23 is Prosecution Exhibit 35.
24 MR. MUNDIS: Mr. Usher, you can retrieve that document from the
25 witness now.
1 Q. Now, Witness, after these two buses departed Keraterm, what
2 happened to you?
3 A. About ten minutes later, new buses arrived. We were not called
4 out. We were simply told to come out and we took that bus to go to
5 Trnopolje camp.
6 Q. Do you recall the date and the approximate time that you arrived
7 at Trnopolje camp?
8 A. 5th of August. I wouldn't know what time it was. Could have been
9 around 10.00 or maybe 11.00.
10 Q. And how long were you at the Trnopolje camp, Witness?
11 A. Until the 3rd of October.
12 Q. While you were at the Trnopolje camp, did you witness any
13 mistreatment of fellow detainees at that camp?
14 A. I only saw a group which was brought to the school from Brdo and
15 from the school they were taken towards Ribnjak, towards the fish pond.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Londrovic?
17 MR. LONDROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I should like to ask
18 the Prosecutor if he has more questions about this incident to then set
19 the time, because in the statement that we have, this time is irrelevant,
20 that is, it is beyond the timeframe of the indictment because it has to do
21 with September 1992. All the incidents that the accused are charged with
22 are -- happened prior to the 30th of August 1992 so that we object to any
23 further questions by the Prosecution about this.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Mundis.
25 MR. MUNDIS: Your Honour, it's the Prosecution's view that this
1 goes to the genocide count against the accused with respect to people that
2 were part, again, of the overall common plan that existed in these various
3 camps in the Prijedor region throughout 1992.
4 [Trial Chamber confers]
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, we'll allow the question.
6 MR. MUNDIS:
7 Q. Witness, you were talking about this group of people from Brdo and
8 from the school at Trnopolje, they were taken towards the fish pond. Can
9 you tell us anything more about that, please?
10 A. Some of the detainees were taken from the camp and went to dig out
11 potatoes, and they came with a truck to take them there. The camp
12 commander there was Slobodan Kuruzovic, but he was not there. They were
13 looking for him, but they said he was not there because he'd gone to the
14 fish pond so they were taken to the fish pond, and after a while we heard
15 some rounds of fire, and those men never came back.
16 Q. Did you ever see those people again?
17 A. Never.
18 Q. Witness, while you were at Trnopolje, did you become aware of a
19 convoy that was organised that was to take people from Trnopolje to
21 A. A convoy left on the 21st. Later on, we were again called to
22 leave, but meanwhile people rejected it. They refused to go again.
23 Q. And what month was that when you say the 21st?
24 A. August. August.
25 Q. Did you subsequently hear that some of the people who were on that
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 convoy were killed at Vlasic Mountain?
2 A. Yes. The camp commander, Kuruzovic, delivered the speech to us
3 and said that the green berets had waylaid that convoy and killed some of
4 the men.
5 Q. Now, Witness, there was a list that you had provided in your
6 statement with some 60-odd names on it. Did you later have the
7 opportunity to assist with the identification of the remains of some of
8 those people that were on the list?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Can you briefly tell the Chamber about that, please, when it was,
11 what you did, what you saw, please.
12 A. Well, there were those bodies which were to Keraterm in the tile
13 factory and I went there to see, and I identified a few bodies. Those
14 were some of -- those were the bodies of men who had left on the 5th of
15 August, some of those 120 men.
16 Q. And Witness, was this at an exhumation site in Sanski Most?
17 A. No, it was the hall where they were stored.
18 Q. Do you know where those bodies were recovered from?
19 A. Hrastova Glavica. Yes, it is the Sanski Most territory.
20 Q. And from the Hrastova Glavica these bodies were taken to a hall in
21 Sanski Most where you were then brought in to assist with identifying
22 them; is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And some of those bodies that you identified were on the list that
25 you provided to the investigators; is that correct?
1 A. It is, yes.
2 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Witness. The Prosecution has no more
3 questions at this time.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you Mr. Mundis.
5 Mr. Greaves.
6 MR. GREAVES: Your Honour, as you know, we were slightly taken by
7 surprise, that's not a problem, slightly taken by surprise by the change
8 in the order of the witnesses. It's likely we are going to be very short
9 with this witness, but I would like to persuade Your Honours to rise now
10 for your break so I can confer with my learned friend and confirm that
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. We'll take the adjournment now for 20
13 minutes that is to say, we'll resume at 20 minutes to 12.00.
14 Witness L, during the adjournment, you are not to discuss your
15 evidence with anybody and that includes the members of the Prosecution
16 team. We are adjourned.
17 --- Recess taken at 11.20 a.m.
18 --- On resuming at 11.42 a.m.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Greaves?
20 MR. GREAVES: Thank you very much for taking the break slightly
21 earlier than you originally thought of. I think it's been quite
22 productive. Could we start by just a short period in private session,
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
25 [Private session]
20 [Open session]
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: We are back in open session.
22 MR. GREAVES: Thank you.
23 Q. Witness L, upon your detention on the 23rd of July, 1992, the
24 other people who were detained at the same time as you, were they all men
25 who could properly be described as men of military service age?
1 A. There was a group of underage men in my room, number 3, but mostly
2 they were men of military age, yes.
3 Q. In fact, you've answered my next question, Witness L. I'm talking
4 initially about the time -- when you were detained, arrested, there were
5 other men with you at that time; is that correct?
6 A. I wasn't arrested. I surrendered.
7 Q. I'm sorry. It probably doesn't matter what we are talking about.
8 When you surrendered, and before getting to Keraterm, were there other
9 people with you who were transported at the same time?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And were those people of the category that we have just been
12 talking about, men of military age?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Thank you. That's helpful. I'd like now to turn, please, if I
15 may, very briefly to the incident which happened when you were in Room 3.
16 Can you help us about this, please? Between Room 3 and Room 4, was there
17 a division of some sort, a low wall? Is that correct?
18 A. There was a proper wall, a clean wall, a wall.
19 Q. But the point I'm getting at is this: Did that wall go all the
20 way to the ceiling or was there, in fact, a gap between the ceiling and
21 the top of the wall, the dividing wall?
22 A. No. It went right up to the ceiling.
23 Q. And were there any breaks of any kind, any windows or anything
24 like that, between Room 3 and Room 4?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Immediately before the shooting started, it's right, isn't it,
2 that a door was broken and people tried to get out through it? Is that
4 A. Yes. After this teargas was thrown in, then men rushed to all
6 Q. And was it in a single group that -- did people actually go out
7 through the door that was broken?
8 A. I don't know whether they managed. I was in this corner, but when
9 they rushed towards the door, someone was shouting, "Don't go to the
10 door." And when the door broke down, we heard a burst of gunfire from the
12 Q. I'd like now to move very briefly to the people who at the closing
13 of Keraterm, people whose names were called out. It's right, isn't it,
14 that they were in fact, as far as you know, taken and arrived at Omarska
15 camp; would you accept that?
16 A. I don't know whether they were taken to Omarska camp, but the
17 people who were taken on the 5th of August were found in Hrastova Glavica,
18 that is the evidence, because people were recognised among those found
19 there as being from Keraterm.
20 Q. If I can just briefly refresh your memory, Witness L, you made two
21 witness statements concerning events which happened to you. One to the
22 Agency for Investigation and Documentation at Sanski Most and one to the
23 Office of the Prosecutor; is that right?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And when you made your statement to the Office of the Prosecutor,
1 you were able to look at the earlier statement and with the exception of
2 some names on a list, were able to confirm that the earlier statement was
3 correct and accurate; is that right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. If I can just refresh your memory as to what you told AID, "The
6 inmates whose names were called out were taken in the direction of Omarska
7 camp. I only heard later that that is where they were placed."
8 So is it correct that you were informed by somebody that they had,
9 in fact, arrived at Omarska?
10 A. Yes. I heard from detainees that they were taken there and that
11 in Omarska, other men were added.
12 Q. And the people from whom you heard that, were they detainees
13 people in whom you placed trust as to the accuracy of what they were
15 A. Yes. They were detainees from Omarska.
16 Q. And next matter I want to deal with briefly is the incident at
17 Trnopolje when people were taken away towards some fish ponds. It's
18 right, isn't it, that that incident took place around the 8th of September
19 1992; do you accept that?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Finally this, please, Witness L, you were detained on the 23rd of
22 July 1992. Between that date and the 30th of August 1992, you and your
23 fellow detainees were wholly in the power of the Serb authorities, weren't
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And at any time, had they so chosen to do so, they could have
2 killed all of you and your fellow detainees, could they not?
3 A. Yes.
4 MR. GREAVES: No further questions. Thank you very much, Your
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Greaves.
7 Mr. Petrovic.
8 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Cross-examined by Mr. Petrovic:
10 Q. Witness, will you please tell me what is it that leads you to
11 believe that you were arrested on the 23rd of July?
12 A. I was not arrested. I surrendered on the 23rd of July.
13 Q. I apologise, that you surrendered. How do you remember that?
14 A. Because the cleansing took place on that date.
15 Q. I understand that. But how do you remember that particular date?
16 A. I know because what happened at Hambarine was on the 23rd of May,
17 and then two months later in Carakovo.
18 Q. In your statement to the investigators of the Tribunal and also in
19 the statement to the Bosnian authorities, you said that when you were
20 rounded up and taken away, that you were searched, and that all your
21 belongings were seized from you; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Today, you said that all your belongings were seized again when
24 you arrived in Keraterm.
25 A. Yes, at the entrance to Keraterm, ID cards, watches and everything
1 else, after we were registered.
2 Q. Does that mean that the same things were taken away twice?
3 A. No, not twice.
4 Q. Slow down, please, because of the interpreters. Please go ahead.
5 A. When they rounded us up, they just formally took some money if
6 anyone had any, and then down there, after registering us, everything was
7 taken away from us, every piece of paper, our documents, our jewellery and
9 Q. How many days after your arrival in Keraterm did this massacre
10 occur in Room 3?
11 A. Three days later.
12 Q. If you arrived on the 23rd as you say --
13 A. It happened in the night between the 26th and the 27th.
14 Q. Please let's make a break because of the interpreters. Maybe it
15 would be helpful for you to remember exactly when this happened. You said
16 you arrived on the 23rd. Then in your statement, you said that you spent
17 two days in that room, and that on the third day you were taken out of the
18 room, and that the next day, the following day, in the evening, this
19 massacre occurred. So then that would be the night between the 27th and
20 the 28th, if I'm counting correctly.
21 A. I think we were outside on the 24th and the 25th, so on -- from
22 the 26th, the night between the 26th and 27, I think that is when it
24 Q. Let us try in another way. On the 24th and the 25th, you were
25 kept in the room so those -- that makes two days. Then on the 26th, you
1 went outside, and then on the 27th, the following day, that happened?
2 A. No. On the 26th in the evening, we were outside during the
3 daytime. When we were put back into the room, that night, that is when it
5 Q. Today, you said that the event, that is when you entered the room,
6 that happened around 23 or 2400 hours?
7 A. No. We were brought there at 1500 hours roughly that day.
8 Q. I'm sorry, you're not following me. You said that on the 26th,
9 the night of the massacre, that that evening you were taken inside between
10 23 and 2400 hours?
11 A. No. We were taken in earlier on, early in the evening. How could
12 we be outside so late and then be taken in?
13 Q. I'm asking you this because in the examination-in-chief, in answer
14 to a question from the Prosecution, that is what you said, that around
15 midnight, and that is the night registered in the record --
16 A. That is a mistake in the record. I said that the incident could
17 have started between 23 and 2400 hours in the evening.
18 Q. So the incident started around midnight?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. You said that there were three waves of shooting and that each
21 lasted a couple of minutes?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. That would mean, then, that all this did not take more than half
24 an hour?
25 A. Yes, something like that.
1 Q. Then that would also mean that this shooting ended around half an
2 hour after midnight, in any event before 1.00 a.m. that night?
3 A. I don't know exactly because -- but that would be roughly so, yes.
4 Q. You went on to say that there was a total lull, it was still dark,
5 and you were inside; is that correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Then, if I remember correctly, you also said that until dawn,
8 nothing really happened, there was no more shooting; is that right?
9 A. There was some shooting, a few shots here and there, but not
10 directed against Room 3. There was some shooting outside within the
12 Q. So this shooting was not close to the room where you were in?
13 A. On the grass somewhere, in front.
14 Q. You also said that about 8.00 a.m., the door was opened and Sivac,
15 Muharem left the room; is that correct?
16 A. He entered the room?
17 Q. No, he left the room.
18 A. He was called out. The steward of the room was told to come out,
19 and he went out through the broken door. As I said, it had already been
21 Q. Today, in the courtroom and also in your statement, you said that
22 this Banovic visited the camp when he was not on duty so as to torture the
23 prisoners; is that correct?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Does that mean that you couldn't know when he was on duty and when
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 he was off?
2 A. Yes. He came often. He had a small motorcycle, a Vespa, and he
3 would come sometimes in the morning, sometimes in the afternoon, when he
4 saw men on the grass.
5 Q. Tell me, in connection with this list that you saw today, did you
6 have any notes on the basis of which you made that list?
7 A. No. I know those persons individually. I can tell you their
8 names, their dates of birth and other particulars about them.
9 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Just a moment, Your Honour,
11 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I have no further questions.
12 Thank you.
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Petrovic.
14 Mr. Ostojic.
15 MR. OSTOJIC: We have no questions, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Mr. Mundis, any re-examination?
17 MR. MUNDIS: No, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Witness L, that concludes your
19 testimony and you may now go.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
21 [The witness withdrew]
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Ryneveld.
23 MR. RYNEVELD: Yes, Your Honour. The Prosecution's next witness
24 is Hajrudin Zubovic. I have just prepared an updated summary for the
25 Court. My friends, I believe, have had summaries which were provided
1 before I just updated it. I have enough copies for my friends. The
2 changes are minor in nature so I don't know whether the interpreters will
3 need updated copies, I doubt very much. I think they will be able to do
4 with what has been given to them thus far.
5 The next witness is in open session with no protective measures.
6 I'm also going to ask that the diagram which will be referred to by the
7 witness is distributed at this time. I believe my friends already have
8 copies of those, but I don't believe the Court has them.
9 [The witness entered court]
10 MR. RYNEVELD: Does the Court have a two-page diagram? There are
11 two pages.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
13 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let the witness make the declaration.
15 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
16 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
17 WITNESS: HAJRUDIN ZUBOVIC
18 [Witness answered through interpreter]
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Ryneveld.
20 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Examined by Mr. Ryneveld:
22 Q. Now, Witness, I understand, sir, that you were born in Hambarine
23 on the 23rd of July 1965; is that correct?
24 A. Yes, it is correct.
25 Q. And do I also understand correctly, sir, that you went to school
1 in Prijedor and then you went on to the University of Zagreb where you
2 obtained a degree in mining engineering?
3 A. Yes, that is correct.
4 Q. Is it fair to say, sir, that you worked in your capacity as a
5 mining engineer in Ljubija before you were captured and then detained at
6 both Keraterm and Trnopolje camps?
7 A. Yes, that is right also.
8 Q. Now, sir, I understand that you were not part of any organised
9 resistance group prior to the conflict that broke out in April of 1992 in
10 your area; is that correct?
11 A. Yes, that too is correct.
12 Q. Did there come a time, sir, when you joined a number of other
13 Muslim men from your village in order to attempt to protect your village
14 of Hambarine from the Serb extremists?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Can you tell us where and under what circumstances and perhaps
17 when that would have occurred?
18 A. It was in late April. I and my neighbours who lived in that
19 hamlet in Hambarine arranged to organise a kind of guard. We were about
20 30, and we went to the foot of the hill near our hamlet, and to the access
21 road, and that is where we had night watch.
22 Q. I see. And the 30 of you, were you armed with weapons of any
24 A. Yes. As far as I can remember, we had some five rifles. Three of
25 them were of a slightly newer date and automatic, and two of them dating
1 back to World War II.
2 Q. So among the 30 men, you had a total of five weapons?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Now, sir, you formed this guard. Did you actually get into any
5 fighting or any skirmish with anyone while you were standing guard to
6 protect your village?
7 A. No, not during those night watches. There was no fighting. There
8 were no armed conflicts.
9 Q. Were you aware of any fighting or armed conflicts in the
10 neighbouring area although you and your companions did not get involved in
11 any fighting?
12 A. Sometime in mid May, about a kilometre or two where we had our
13 guard duty, there was an exchange of fire, which wasn't a common
14 occurrence. That is, as we found out later, a group tried to capture
15 Slavko Ecimovic and his family in their home. And on that occasion, many
16 bullets were fired, but I did not really know or see many details related
17 to this. But, yes, there was some gunfire.
18 Q. This family that you mentioned, that was attempted to be captured,
19 do you know what their ethnicity was?
20 A. I know that they are not Bosniak Muslims. Slavko Ecimovic? Well
21 my guess is that he's a Catholic, a Croat, but I'm not sure.
22 Q. All right. Sir, can you tell us what if anything happened that
23 would be of interest to this Court on the 23rd of May, 1992?
24 A. On the 23rd of May, sometime after 12.00, the attack on our
25 village, Hambarine, began. The attack was preceded by an ultimatum by the
1 military and civilian authorities in Prijedor, requesting that we lay down
2 all the weapons that we allegedly had and that we owned. But as far as I
3 know, a delegation tried to establish contact with the military
4 authorities, and around 10.00 or 11.00 in the evening, that is a few hours
5 before the attack. However, they were turned back. And then around about
6 half past twelve, the attack on the village of Hambarine started.
7 Q. This announcement to turn in your weapons, how was that
8 communicated to you, sir?
9 A. As far as I can remember, the message was sent us via Radio
11 Q. On the 23rd of May, sir, when you were living in Hambarine, were
12 there any family members with you?
13 A. I lived in my family house, that is my parental house, with my
14 parents and my wife and my daughter, who was two years old at that time.
15 Q. You told us that at about 12.30, an attack in fact occurred. I'm
16 not sure, since we are not talking about the 24-hour clock, is this 12.30
17 noon or is this shortly after midnight?
18 A. Noon.
19 Q. I see. And what happened when the attack started? First of all,
20 who did the attacking?
21 A. Since at that time the military and civilian administration in
22 Prijedor was in the hands of the Serb people, with the SDS and the
23 Yugoslav People's Army, there was nobody else who could have carried out
24 that attack. And besides, the ultimatum itself, that was issued as -- the
25 ultimatum itself said that the weapons were to be turned over to those
1 military Serb authorities who at that time controlled the town of
3 Q. What happened during the attack, if anything?
4 A. The attack began with artillery, as far as we could figure out,
5 the shells came from different directions, from the direction of Prijedor,
6 Miljakovci, a village near Cela and from the back or rather from the south
7 in relation to Hambarine, from the direction of Ljeskari.
8 Q. During the course of attack, was there any damage to any of the
9 property in your village?
10 A. When the attack started, we had a feeling that the shells were
11 falling at random, all over the village, but in those parts which were in
12 the part of the village which was -- which bordered on the locality of
13 Tukovi, and which had the previous night been emptied of its Bosniak
14 population, from that side, the troops were advancing and they first
15 plundered and then set houses on fire. So as far as I could figure it
16 out, over 200 houses were set on fire that day and those were mostly on
17 the section of the Ljubija-Prijedor road and the part of the road passing
18 through the village of Hambarine.
19 Q. Are you able to say whether there was a particular ethnic group
20 that lived in the area where the 200 or so houses were set on fire?
21 A. They were all Bosniak houses, that is where the local population
22 lived, in Hambarine. They were all Bosniaks.
23 Q. And just so that I'm clear what you mean by the word "Bosniak," is
24 it fair to say that a Bosniak is a Muslim from the Bosnia area? Is that
25 what a Bosniak means to you?
1 A. That's right. That is a term that I use.
2 Q. Thank you. Now, what did you and your family do during the
4 A. At the outset we were in that part, in that area where we kept
5 night watch, at the very entrance into our hamlet, but when we saw how the
6 situation unfolded and that the weapons that we had, we could not offer --
7 put up any resistance, we could not resist in any way whatsoever those
8 troops which were advancing and torching houses and taking the ground, and
9 then we -- and then we fled, we left the house, and after two days, in the
10 forest of Kurevo, which is above the village of Hambarine, my family and I
11 went to Ljubija to some relatives, that is father of a colleague of mine
12 from the studies, and that is where I spent sometime as a refugee.
13 Q. Now, sir, do I understand correctly that you and your family were
14 not alone to flee and go to Ljubija, that in fact there were about 10.000
15 refugees who ended up in Ljubija; is that correct?
16 A. It is. By and large, the population from the villages on that
17 what is so-called Brdo; Biscani, Rakovcani, Hambarine, Carakovo. These
18 people were first put up Kurevo, but some of them arrived later in
19 Ljubija, and subsequently those people who had stayed at Kurevo also came
20 to Ljubija. It was a few days after the 23rd of May, that is following
21 the attack on Hambarine.
22 Q. Now, sir, is it safe to say or is it fair for me to summarise by
23 saying that you stayed in Ljubija until about -- well, from the 23rd of
24 May until about the 11th of June; is that correct?
25 A. More correctly from the 25th of May until the 19th of June.
1 Q. All right. Now, did something happen on the 11th of June that is
2 of relevance to this Court that you can tell us about?
3 A. Yes. On the 11th of May, at that time --
4 Q. 11th of May or June?
5 A. No, June. I'm sorry. On the 11th of June, at that time, my wife
6 and my child had already left and moved to my wife's parents, to
7 Prijedor. And a few days before that, that is prior to the 11th of June,
8 my parents had returned -- had gone home to Hambarine. And that day, I
9 went from Ljubija via Kurevo to Hambarine, and on my way, I found the
10 bodies of my slain neighbours. And after a while, I made my way through
11 to my house and to my parents and get them out again, that is in a
13 Q. Was there something that occurred on the 11th of June that caused
14 you to try to get your parents out again?
15 A. At that time when I set off from Ljubija, I didn't know what was
16 going on in Hambarine, but when I arrived there, having seen those corpses
17 and statements of people who had been on the spot and who had experienced
18 some unpleasantness from Serb troops who had that morning arrived at
19 around 6.00 and committed the massacre, and according to some allegations,
20 it happened because that morning or rather that day, on the 11th or at
21 that time, allegedly in Belgrade, Zoran Karlica had died, and he was the
22 commander of the intervention group which was part of the local Serb
23 military forces.
24 In retaliation for his death, they came to Hambarine and committed
25 a massacre and where, approximately from what I know, between 30 and 50
1 people were killed.
2 Q. Did you manage to get your parents out of Hambarine and make it
3 back to Ljubija that day?
4 A. Yes. Yes, I managed to do that.
5 Q. So we're back at Ljubija then after the 11th of June, and on the
6 14th of June, while you and your family were in Ljubija, did something
7 happen at the Ljubija or -- that took you to the Ljubija football stadium?
8 A. That day, there was something which we called search. Earlier in
9 the morning that day, Serb troops came. They were in Ljubija itself and
10 on all the hills surrounding Ljubija, and they said that all men who were
11 refugees and the local population, I mean males who lived in Ljubija of 25
12 to 30 years of age, should go to the stadium in Ljubija.
13 Q. Did you?
14 A. Yes, because there was this order and we were escorted by soldiers
15 to the stadium.
16 Q. Where were you in order to be escorted by them to the stadium?
17 I'm sorry, I didn't make that clear. Where were you when the soldiers
18 came to escort you?
19 A. I was in the house that belonged to the parents of a school friend
20 of mine in Donja Ljubija.
21 Q. Did the soldiers come to the house to get the men to take them to
22 the stadium?
23 A. Yes. They came, searched, seized jewellery, seized money. That
24 is what happened first, and then we were escorted, that is, taken to the
25 Ljubija stadium.
1 Q. Now, sir, do I understand correctly that your father was among
2 those people that was taken away and that you all arrived at the Ljubija
3 football stadium where you were asked questions about weapons and the
4 location of certain individuals; is that correct?
5 A. Yes, that is correct.
6 Q. And after this interrogation, both you and your father were
7 released and you were not maltreated or mistreated while you were there.
8 A. That is correct.
9 Q. Now, sir, talking about the activities in the south Prijedor area,
10 do you know who the people were who you considered to be responsible for
11 the attack on the people in your area?
12 A. As far as I was informed, Brdo and Ljubija and the southern part
13 of Prijedor was part of the territory which should have been controlled or
14 was controlled by the Crisis Staff in Ljubija, and the command of that
15 Crisis Staff in Ljubija was Rade Bilbija.
16 Q. Do you know of any other individuals who were lower in rank or
17 lower in, shall we say -- up the ladder from Mr. Bilbija, who were
19 A. I know a man with a surname Taranjac, who was the President of the
20 SDS in Ljubija, and one of the better known figures, who was a member of
21 the reserve police force was Milan Curguz also known as Krivi. These are
22 the people who I know by name as having played a certain role in
23 developments that occurred in the area of the territory covered by the
24 Ljubija Crisis Staff.
25 Q. Did you, in fact, personally see these people take part in the
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
2 A. What attack do you mean?
3 Q. Either of the attacks that you have referred to earlier in your
4 evidence today, the attack on your village?
5 A. No, I didn't see them attacking the village of Hambarine on the
6 23rd of May.
7 Q. Thank you. Now, sir, you've told us that on the 19th of July,
8 something happened. In other words, you were in this area until the 19th
9 of July, you indicated. What happened on the 19th?
10 A. On the 19th of July, there was another so-called search, but as
11 compared to the first search, that occurred on the 14th of June, I think,
12 the second time there was an explicit order for all refugees to go to the
13 stadium, the same stadium as the first time, and to bring with them their
14 personal belongings. One of the soldiers said that we would simply be
15 deported to central Bosnia or something like that. However, when we
16 arrived at the stadium, one of the men who was selecting us was Rade
17 Bilbija, who said -- selected about 50 people to one side, whereas the
18 older people, women and children, were left on the other side of the
20 After that, we were all boarded on to three buses, and the
21 selected 50, among whom I was one, were put in the third bus in order.
22 There were only about 50 of us, and on the way to -- towards the town of
23 Prijedor, the bus stopped in front of the MUP building in Prijedor, and
24 Rade Bilbija got into the bus and again selected some men, and out of the
25 50 that were on the bus, 30 were transferred to the other two buses, and
1 the remaining 20 or so of us were driven to Keraterm.
2 Q. Now, sir, at the time, on the 19th of July, you say that the women
3 and children were also being sorted out in the stadium. Where were your
4 wife and child? Were they among the people at the stadium being sorted
5 out, as it were?
6 A. As I have already said, on the 11th of June, when I was telling
7 you about the situation on the 11th of June, my wife and child had already
8 been transferred to Prijedor. She was staying with our child at her
9 parents' place in Prijedor.
10 Q. So I'm correct, then, to surmise from that that your wife and
11 child were not among those who were rounded up on the 19th of July and
12 taken to the stadium? They were already gone; is that right?
13 A. Yes, that is correct.
14 Q. We now have, sir, come to the point in your evidence where you and
15 some approximately 20 other young men or men arrive at Keraterm. Do you
16 know the approximate range of ages of these men who were on the buses,
17 that were left on the bus with you after the 30 had been asked to get
19 A. Well, roughly, shall we say, between 17 or 18, up to 35 or 40
20 years of age.
21 Q. Was there an older man on the bus that arrived at Keraterm with
23 A. I cannot remember now.
24 Q. All right. What happened when you arrived at Keraterm?
25 A. When we arrived at Keraterm, they told us to form a line, and
1 while we were standing there in line, our names and particulars were taken
2 down in a notebook. In fact, we were registered as having arrived in
4 Q. Now, could you tell who or what type of person was writing in a
5 notebook and where that person was?
6 A. The person who was writing our particulars down in a notebook was
7 in a small house, a hut, that was used as a weigh bridge for trucks or
8 something like that, and this person was inside, in this hut or kiosk, if
9 I can call it that, while around were the other guards.
10 Q. And how is this person getting the information about your
11 particulars? Was it being told to him or was he within hearing as you
12 were asked it, or how was this information being obtained from you and
13 transferred to the person who was making the notes?
14 A. They asked us about our particulars, and also if we had any
15 personal documents, to show them. We showed them. So we were identified
16 in that way.
17 Q. You say the person making the notes was inside this hut or kiosk,
18 as you called it?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Was the window -- was there a window to that kiosk at all, to your
22 A. Yes, on the front side. And I think -- yes, on the front side,
23 there was a window with glass. The whole side was in glass.
24 Q. Do you know whether that window was open or shut or -- what I'm
25 interested in, sir, is how did the information that you were giving
1 whoever was asking you the questions, how did that information get to the
2 person inside taking the notes? Could he hear the answers that you were
3 giving? Were you close enough?
4 A. Yes. We were standing in front.
5 Q. I see.
6 A. Next to an open window.
7 Q. I see. Now, then, while this information was being obtained from
8 you, did anything else happen?
9 A. Well, yes. While our particulars were being taken down in a
10 notebook, a guard nicknamed Cupo or Bane, his surname being Banovic, went
11 from one to the other detainee and asked him various questions, who he
12 was, what he was, to see whether he knew them from before, and as he did
13 so, he mistreated them.
14 Q. And what sort of activity did you see that you characterise as
16 A. One of the ways was waving his pistol in front of a person's
17 face. He threatened my uncle who was just in front of me, and I saw him
18 cock his pistol, put a bullet inside so that my uncle would see him do it,
19 and then after that, he lent the pistol against his cheek.
20 Q. We'll get to the particulars of that in a paragraph or two I have
21 here, sir, but I'm going to ask now after your information was taken,
22 where were you -- were you placed somewhere in the camp?
23 A. Yes, I was placed in Room 3 together with about five other
24 detainees who arrived with me on that same bus.
25 Q. When you got to Room 3, was it empty or were there already other
1 people in the room?
2 A. There were roughly about 200 men inside. I was given a place,
3 that is, I sat down next to some guys who had been in Keraterm since the
4 beginning or the middle of May because those men had come there in mid-May
5 and they were from Kozarac. As for the others who were in that room, I
6 cannot say when they arrived nor how long they had been there nor where
7 they came from. But Room 3 was full, in answer to your question.
8 Q. Okay. Did you stay in Room 3 very long?
9 A. Just for that night.
10 Q. Where did you go the next day?
11 A. The next day in the morning around 10.00, guards came and said
12 that all the men from Room 3 had to be moved to the other rooms and I took
13 advantage of the opportunity and went to Room 2 where I found a place next
14 to my uncle who had been there since the first night, that is, the 19th of
15 June in that room.
16 Q. June or July?
17 A. July. 19th of July, I'm sorry.
18 Q. So the previous day?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. You and five men went into Room 3 where as the other 15 were
21 distributed among other rooms and it turns out your uncle went to Room 2;
22 is that it?
23 A. That is right.
24 Q. Then on the 20th of July when they emptied Room 3, you went to
25 Room 2 and joined your uncle; do I have that right?
1 A. Yes. That's right.
2 Q. Now, sir, during your stay at Keraterm, did you stay in Room 2 for
3 the balance of your stay?
4 A. I stayed in Room 2 until the Keraterm camp was dismantled.
5 Q. That would have been in early August; is that correct?
6 A. Yes. As far as I can remember, around the 5th of August.
7 Q. Now, sir, did you prepare, sometime after your release, some
8 diagrams which you provided to the Office of the Prosecutor of sketches of
9 Keraterm camp?
10 A. Yes. On a number of occasions, I tried to sketch the actual
11 building because in 1993 and 1994, there was a lot of talk about the
12 building, but the actual drawing and the appearance of the building was
13 something that the Prosecution didn't have so they asked me to draw it for
14 them which I did.
15 Q. At the time you drew the diagram, did you first of all draw a
16 diagram of the outside dimensions, like an outside view of what Keraterm
17 looked like?
18 A. No. First, I did the layout, that is a view from the top so that
19 on the basis of that layout, I could make a sketch of the appearance of
20 the compound from the outside.
21 Q. And, sir, was this sketch entirely from memory or were you
22 assisted by anything, any photographs, anything else, or did you do this
23 entirely from memory?
24 A. From memory. I am technically educated. I studied mining
25 engineering so technical drawing and observation of technical details is
1 part of my job. And also, three dimensional sketching, I was trained to
2 do that.
3 Q. So the diagram that you prepared which consists of two pages, one
4 of sort of a layout and other one sort of a view, that was entirely from
5 memory and you were not assisted by photographs; is that correct?
6 A. Yes, that is correct.
7 Q. Between the time of your detention and being asked to draw some
8 sketches from memory, had you been back to Prijedor to look at Keraterm
9 camp? Did you have an opportunity to see it again?
10 A. No. No. I went to Prijedor for the first time since the war in
12 Q. And just so that we're clear, sir, I understand that you prepared
13 this diagram on or about the 10th of February 1995; is that correct?
14 A. Yes, about that time.
15 Q. And did you send this diagram by mail to the Office of the
17 A. I don't remember the details as to how this reached the
18 Prosecution because I had several contacts and calls from the Prosecution
19 so I can't remember exactly how this drawing reached the Office of the
21 MR. RYNEVELD: If I may ask for the assistance of the usher, could
22 the witness be shown a diagram or two diagrams with ERN numbers 01099196
23 and the following number 197. It's right here.
24 Q. Just for the record, sir, that's being placed on the ELMO. By
25 looking at, first of all, the last three-digit document 196, is that a
1 document that you personally prepared from memory?
2 A. Yes, that is the drawing.
3 Q. And to the best of your recollection, sir, that represents what
4 the Keraterm camp layout was when you arrived, is that correct? Or during
5 the period of your detention in 1992?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Using a pointer or something, perhaps you could point to the
8 various rooms that you became to be aware of on this diagram.
9 A. Room 1, Room 2, Room 3, Room 4. This was the entrance to the
11 Q. Okay. I'm going to stop here. For the record, I'm going to have
12 to record where you're now pointing. The numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4 you've
13 pointed to are actually marked on the diagram; is that correct? You've
14 actually placed those on the doors to the room?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. The last --
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. The last door that you've just referred to is what appears to be a
19 doorway to the left of Room 3. That's where you've placed your pointer;
20 is that correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. What was that, sir? What was that the entrance to, from your
24 A. It was the entrance to the toilet, the WC.
25 Q. I see. And so the toilet was adjacent to Room 3, was it?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Do you recall where the area was that the food was prepared? Is
3 that depicted anywhere in this diagram that you've just shown us?
4 A. The food arrived already prepared in the camp and it was
5 distributed here.
6 Q. You are now pointing to the area which we would refer to perhaps
7 as the junction, or the V caused by the main building and the extension to
8 the building, in the basic -- where they join; is that correct?
9 A. Yes, that is correct.
10 Q. So that would be next to the toilet?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Thank you. Turning the page to 197 --
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Ryneveld, I don't know whether we have had
14 this information, but what was the distance between Room 2 and Room 3?
15 MR. RYNEVELD: I don't believe that I've asked any witness that
16 question so far. Perhaps the witness can assist us.
17 Q. Are you able to tell us the distance, sir - you've heard his
18 Honour's question - the distance, the approximate distance, from Room 2 to
19 Room 3?
20 A. Maybe we could look at the next page with the layout.
21 Q. All right. Any way that would assist the Court is fine with me.
22 Just so that we are clear, this is the first document that you prepared.
23 This is your top down view, as it were, of the same area that we have just
24 been talking about? Nodding your head in the affirmative?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Thank you. Now --
2 A. That is the first sketch I made, yes.
3 Q. Now, for example, if we look at the box to the left hand -- or the
4 rectangle to the left side marked with a "1," I take it that's Room 1,
5 it's considerably narrower than the box you've marked with Room 2; is that
7 A. Yes, that is correct, almost twice the size.
8 Q. All right.
9 A. Room 2 is twice the size of Room 1.
10 Q. Now, how representative is this freehand drawing, or from memory,
11 with respect to scale? Are you able to tell the Court from this drawing
12 how far Room 2 would be from Room 3?
13 A. Making this ground plan, I wrote out a scale, which should mark 6
14 and 12 metres.
15 Q. Oh, I see, the legend at the bottom?
16 A. Yes. And on the basis of that scale, depends from which end we
17 measure it, then the distance could be somewhere between 15 and 20 metres,
18 I think.
19 Q. And in between would be the toilets; is that correct?
20 A. Yes, the toilet is here. I think here there was some auxiliary
21 rooms and here is a room where --
22 Q. All right. So that we are clear, that when you're pointing at
23 something and saying "here," I better talk about what you're pointing to.
24 The auxiliary rooms would be the two almost-square-looking boxes
25 immediately to the left of the water closet or toilet, and the auxiliary
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 rooms would be at the foreground immediately adjacent to the box marked
2 "2"; is that correct? Is that what you were pointing to?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Just so that we are clear. Thank you. So the total distance,
5 then, in your estimate would be, as you've said, about 15 to 20 metres
6 between Rooms 2 and 3 with these intervening rooms or -- and the toilet
7 between the rooms; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 MR. RYNEVELD: Hopefully -- does that assist Your Honour?
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Thank you very much.
11 MR. RYNEVELD:
12 Q. And so the first night you were placed in Room 3 and then the next
13 night, and for the balance of your stay, you went into Room 2?
14 A. Yes, that is correct.
15 Q. This guard hut or kiosk, you have not marked that on either of
16 these diagrams; is that correct, sir?
17 A. No, I haven't.
18 Q. If you were to have placed the location of the kiosk or guard hut
19 on this diagram, would it be somewhere on -- looking at 197, would it be
20 visible somewhere on that document, or would it be off the map, or where
21 would it be?
22 A. It would be roughly here.
23 Q. And you're now pointing to the area where the word
24 "koncentracioni" appears; is that correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you. Might this be a convenient time to have
2 those documents marked as an exhibit in these proceedings?
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. The number, please?
4 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecution Exhibit number 37.
5 MR. RYNEVELD: Yes. And might that consist of the bundle of three
6 pages? The third page appears to be the --
7 [Trial Chamber confers].
8 MR. RYNEVELD: Just for the record, I'm just asking whether the
9 Court would agree that that exhibit number ought be comprised of three
10 pages, the two pages I referred to, along with number 198 which appears to
11 be a photocopy of the envelope in which the document was sent and
12 eventually ended up in the Prosecutor's hands.
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, I think a single number is sufficient.
14 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you. Continuing on if we may -- thank you,
15 Mr. Usher, I appreciate it.
16 Q. Sir, during your time at Keraterm, were you able to determine
17 whether or not there was a command structure or a hierarchy within the
19 A. Yes. As far as I can recollect, the guards were divided into
20 three shifts, and they had one person who was said to be the commander of
21 the camp. And judging by the behaviour of the guards and the stories of
22 the detainees, that is what he was. The camp commander was Sikirica, and
23 the guards were known by the prominent individuals who led those guards.
24 As far as I can remember, there was Kajin's shift, Kondic's shift,
25 and Kole's shift. That is how we distinguished between them.
1 Q. Did you know any of these individuals prior to your detention?
2 A. No, I didn't know any of them.
3 Q. How did you come to know them during the course of your detention,
4 would you see them frequently?
5 A. As far as the guard leaders were concerned, we saw them often in
6 the compound and among the detainees, and on the basis of what people who
7 knew those persons from before said, that is how they were identified.
8 For instance, the colleagues from work of some of those individuals were
9 held in detention, and at times, they would communicate with them and talk
10 to them. That is how I learned from the people who knew them what their
11 names were.
12 MR. RYNEVELD: I'm about to embark on something that may take a
13 little bit of time, and I note the time, but I'm in Your Honours' hands in
14 terms of timing.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, we'll take the break now.
16 Mr. Zubovic, we're going to take an adjournment for an hour and a
17 half. We'll resume at 2.30. During the adjournment, you're not to
18 discuss your evidence with anybody including members of the Prosecution
20 We are adjourned.
21 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.33 p.m.
2 MR. LAWRENCE: May it please the Court.
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Sir Ivan Lawrence, I see you are here.
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the President, please.
5 Microphone for Judge Robinson, please.
6 MR. LAWRENCE: [Previous translation continues] ... be useful, I
7 beg to reintroduce myself and together with my co-counsel, Mr. John
8 Ostojic who is here, I have an application to make to the Court at a
9 convenient moment. I understand that there is a witness who is here and
10 who needs to be taken this afternoon so I'm in the Court's hands as to
11 when I make that application, but I would like to make it if the Court
12 will allow in closed session.
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. I think it would be best to have that made
14 somewhat near to the end of today's proceedings.
15 MR. LAWRENCE: Certainly.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Ryneveld.
17 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Q. Now, Mr. Zubovic, we broke for lunch at a time when you had just
19 indicated to us the hierarchical structure, as you understood it, at
20 Keraterm during the course of your detention. I'm going to ask you now,
21 sir, the individual that you referred to as Sikirica, when did you first
22 see him?
23 A. During the registration when they were putting our names in that
24 notebook, during the first hour of my stay in Keraterm.
25 Q. And where was Mr. Sikirica at that time?
1 A. He was sitting in that hut or that kiosk.
2 Q. And was he alone in the kiosk or was he the person that was making
3 the notes or was it someone else?
4 A. I think he was the one actually who was taking the names down in
5 that notebook.
6 Q. All right. And the individual you referred to as Kole, when did
7 you see him in the camp?
8 A. Well, again, during those first moments there as we were being
9 registered in that notebook. He stood in front of the hut, but outside.
10 He was next to the window which was open so it was right next to the first
11 detainee in the column, and he talked with Sikirica or at least
12 communicated with Sikirica who was sitting within -- inside the hut.
13 Q. Are you now referring to the individual of Kole or Kajin? To whom
14 are you now referring?
15 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Objection, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Petrovic?
17 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I think the witness said very
18 clearly who he was talking about, and I really see no reason why my
19 learned friend should ask that question. And he repeated the name of the
20 man several times.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Ryneveld, yes, the reference was to Kole.
23 MR. RYNEVELD: I asked the witness about Kole, that's correct, and
24 I'm asking the witness to clarify to whom he is referring. If a witness
25 mentions a date, for example, one can clarify whether that is what he
1 means or whether that is not what he means. I understand my friend's
2 objection and I'll rephrase my questions.
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, rephrase it.
4 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you.
5 Q. Perhaps, sir, you could tell us -- when you arrived at Keraterm,
6 you've told us about Mr. Sikirica being inside the guard house. Can you
7 tell us who else was present at that particular time?
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Objection, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes? What's the objection?
10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, in relation to paragraph
11 10 of the summary, which is what the Prosecutor is asking the witness
12 about, he's asking the witness about new facts that the witness did not
13 mention in his statements to the prosecutors, to the OTP prosecutors, in
14 his statement, and these questions now go to the investigator's report of
15 October, 2000; that is, this report is not based on the witness's
16 statement. There is no witness's signature on it, and the investigator's
17 report is based on an alleged interview with the witness in which the
18 investigator recounts some facts important for the defence, which the
19 witness never mentioned before in his earlier statements, and in this
20 investigator's report it is said, and I'm quoting, "With the
21 above-mentioned witness, we talked again in October, 2000." So these are
22 several persons --
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Rodic, are you suggesting that a witness
24 cannot be asked a question on a matter unless he has given some previous
25 statement in relation to it? It is open to you to cross-examine on that.
1 That's the way to deal with that.
2 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, but I'm afraid that
3 questions asked by my learned friend are based on the investigator's
4 report and the witness did not refer to that so far.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Proceed.
6 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you.
7 Q. Witness, in your own words, would you describe to the Court,
8 please, when you arrived at Keraterm, who was present and what did each of
9 the people that you saw do in relation to what occurred to you there?
10 A. Right. Well, I must admit that I wasn't quite focused in the
11 beginning. I understand the question and I realise that I made a mistake
12 a moment ago, so let me repeat. At the entrance into the camp, we stood
13 in a column waiting for the person sitting inside the house to register
14 us. According to what I learned at a later stage, the person who sat
15 inside and with whom I had a short conversation later on that same day was
16 called Sikirica. However, outside the hut, there was a man called Kajin
17 who stood there, and he was involved in this recording process, in
18 recording the names in that notebook. There were also other guards apart
19 from Kajin, from his own shift, whom I did not know at the time. I
20 learned their names later on. I later found out who they were, and what.
21 Q. All right. Do you know any of the names of those individuals
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Could you tell us about one of them?
25 A. As I have mentioned, in the hut Sikirica was sitting. Outside
1 Kajin was standing right outside the house. And there was also a guard
2 who approached the column and that guard was called Banovic, his nickname
3 was Cupo.
4 Q. What if anything did he do?
5 A. He went from one prisoner to the other in the column, trying to
6 obtain some information from them, as to who that person was, where he
7 came from, where he had been before, and ill-treated the detainees, by the
8 way. For instance, when I say ill-treatment, I can tell you that it was
9 my uncle standing in front of me and Banovic came up to him, got his
10 pistol, or rather loaded the pistol, put it against my uncle's cheek and
11 asked him things such as where had been my uncle -- where had my uncle
12 bean during the attack, and after that, and the like.
13 Q. Did that conduct by Banovic stop, and if so, how did it stop?
14 A. Well, that kind of interrogation and abuse by Banovic was
15 interrupted twice. Both times it was Kajin standing in front of the hut
16 and who could communicate with Banovic. Twice, as far as I could see, at
17 Sikirica's intervention who was sitting inside the hut, Kajin told Banovic
18 to get away from the prisoners and let them be, and the first time he did
19 that, but he then again started doing it, and when he was admonished the
20 second time, then Banovic moved away.
21 Q. And it's subsequent to that that you were placed in Room 3 for the
22 evening; is that correct? This is the period in time that we are now
23 talking about. This is between your arrival and being placed in Room 3
24 for the night?
25 A. Yes, that is correct.
1 Q. This person that you've referred to as Kajin, could you describe
2 that individual to the Court in terms of what you can recall about what he
3 looked like at the time?
4 A. At that time in 1992, he was about 28, 30 years of age, perhaps
5 100 something, 190 tall, in a military uniform. And perhaps this was
6 slightly out of the ordinary, he had rather peculiar trousers. He had
7 something like overalls on him with suspenders. I think it wasn't a
8 standard military uniform, and that's why it struck my eye, why I
9 remembered it. As for his hair, the colour, I should say light brown,
11 Q. Were there any other distinguishing feature that you can now
12 recall and relate to the Court about what Kajin looked like at the time?
13 Perhaps body weight or anything like that, was he big or fat or skinny or
15 A. Well, as I said, something between 180, 190 tall and I should say
16 standard built, neither overweight nor underweight nor too skinny.
17 Q. You did not know this individual before you met him at Keraterm;
18 is that correct?
19 A. No, I did not.
20 Q. Between your arrival on the 19th of July and your departure on the
21 5th of August, how often would you say you saw the individual you've
22 referred to as Kajin?
23 A. Well, as I have said, the guard shift, guard shift would be --
24 would change at 6.00 in the morning and 6.00 in the afternoon, and the
25 prisoners knew which shift was coming on. One of those shifts was the
1 shift that we called Kajin's, and practically one could see him in the
2 compound at the time when that particular shift was on.
3 Q. All right. Sir, do you think that you would be able to recognise
4 this individual if you were to see him again?
5 A. No. I'm not sure I could recognise him because I did not know him
6 before and I did not see him since August 1992. So I don't think I'd be
7 able to recognise him.
8 Q. Now, sir, in the course of your evidence before lunch, you also
9 mentioned an individual by the name of Kole. Can you describe that
10 individual for the Court and under what circumstances you saw him.
11 A. Well, he was also the number one or leader of a shift. I knew
12 that on this shift, there was also -- that there was a man who led that
13 shift and that person was nicknamed Kole. He is slightly shorter than
14 Kajin, not as much hair but roughly the same colour. Perhaps slightly
15 broader shoulders than Kajin though he was shorter than Kajin so 160, 170
16 centimetres tall. Hair colour, light brown, but much less hair than
17 Kajin. And -- well, when I say less, much less, it's relative, of
18 course. I mean -- but less hair than Kajin, yes, considerably less hair.
19 Q. Given the passage of time, do you feel you could recognise that
20 individual if you were to see him again?
21 A. I am not sure, for the same reasons as before concerning the
22 person nicknamed Kajin.
23 Q. Sir, with respect to the individual you referred to as Sikirica,
24 the individual you say was at the guard hut when you first arrived, I
25 believe you told us you had a subsequent conversation with him; is that
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 correct? You are nodding your head meaning yes?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. That individual, do you feel you would recognise him if you were
4 to see him again?
5 A. With difficulty. I can try to describe him or how I remembered
6 him from that time. At that time, he had a moustache, dark brown hair,
7 standard built, neither too tall nor too short, like that. But the
8 moustache was how one could identify him easily.
9 Q. You say that you may be able to recognise this man with
10 difficulty. I'm going to ask you to look around the courtroom, sir, and
11 tell us whether -- I see my friend rising to his feet before I ...
12 [Trial Chamber confers]
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Ryneveld, in view of what the witness has
14 said, he has testified as to the difficulty that he would have in
15 recognising Sikirica, the Chamber rules that there isn't a sufficient
16 basis for him to make that identification.
17 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you, Your Honour. I'll move on.
18 Q. Sir, while you were at Keraterm, did you -- are you aware of any
19 mistreatment of prisoners by anyone?
20 A. Yes. I was present on several occasions.
21 Q. Now, you've told us that there were three shifts; is that correct,
23 A. Yes, there were three shifts.
24 Q. Are you able to relate to us when these beatings occurred in
25 relation to shifts during your stay?
1 A. What I can say is that Guard Banovic, Cupo, I watched a scene when
2 he beat a school fellow of mine, Ibrahim Dizdarevic, and the leader of
3 that shift was Kajin.
4 Q. All right. What can you tell us, sir, about the shifts themselves
5 and the frequency of events occurring on the various shifts?
6 A. There wasn't really much difference between the shifts as regards
7 the treatment of the prisoners by the guards or, briefly, one could get
8 beaten or rather prisoners got beaten regardless of the shift, but what
9 was perhaps slightly different was that, for instance, the shift which had
10 Kondic, during that shift, one was not allowed to leave the dormitory and
11 come out.
12 That is, we would be locked in all day long except with very short
13 breaks where we would be allowed to run to the toilet, or at lunch time,
14 to -- we were allowed to only then leave that room. And it is also rather
15 characteristic that Kondic's shift was the shift which enjoyed the
16 reputation of the most dangerous ones. People were afraid of them and
17 because especially of the number of detainees who had been ill-treated by
18 that shift. So if I am to categorise, to grade them, I think that
19 Kondic's shift was the worst, then Kajin's and then the one that had
20 Kole. It was, in relative terms, easier to go through the day when one
21 had Kole's shift on than when the Kondic's shift was on duty.
22 Q. You've mentioned Banovic. Was there more than one Banovic?
23 A. As far as I know, there was his brother there too. But -- and
24 they were -- one could tell them apart because they were physically
25 different and they treated detainees differently. The one whom the
1 detainees knew as Cupo was the one who was much, much meaner.
2 Q. Do you know whose shift they were on? Or are you able to say? Or
3 perhaps different shifts?
4 A. I think they were on the same shift, and I think it was the shift
5 which was on duty on the day that I came to the camp, that is Kajin's,
6 Kajin's shift.
7 Q. Thank you. Now, sir, you've told us that after being in Room 3,
8 you were moved into Room 2 where you stayed for the balance of your
9 detention at Keraterm. Did something happen one night, to your knowledge,
10 to a prisoner who was relieving himself on a barrel in Room 2? Tell us
11 about that.
12 A. Well, I sat -- or, rather, I had a place to lie down in the rear
13 part, in the back part of Room 2, and one night, I don't know what time it
14 was, all I know it was night-time, and one could only see street lighting
15 on the Prijedor-Banja Luka road and in the compound itself. That is, I
16 could see the outlines of a man sitting on the barrel which was used as a
17 toilet, and as he sat there, two guards came up to him and started a
18 conversation -- or, better said, one of the guards began to talk to the
19 man who was sitting on that barrel, and all of a sudden, that person --
20 that guard fired a bullet at this person sitting on the barrel. And after
21 a brief conversation with the other guard, who was trying to calm him down
22 in a way, this one said very loudly and clearly, "Let me go. I can do as
23 I please." And then he fired another bullet at another person who was
24 next to the door.
25 Q. Do you know what happened to the man sitting on the barrel as a
1 result of being shot?
2 A. As far as I heard from other prisoners, because I could not see it
3 from the place where I was sitting, he died, and his body and the body of
4 the other one who was either killed or wounded that night, in the morning
5 when we were allowed to come out, those bodies or that body was removed.
6 Q. Do you know the names of either of the victims of the shooting or
7 the name of the shooter?
8 A. No, no, I don't know the name -- their names.
9 Q. And this incident occurred shortly after your arrival at Keraterm,
10 was it? So shortly after the 19th of July, 1992?
11 A. Yes. It was after the 19th of July, but I don't remember the
12 exact date, but it was during my stay in Room 2, so it was as of the 20th
13 of July.
14 Q. I'd like you now to turn your mind to the last night before you
15 were released. Did something happen -- released from Keraterm, sorry.
16 Did something happen that night in relation to an individual?
17 A. Yes. That night, from Room 1, Jasmin Alisic was taken out. I
18 knew him from before, his nickname was Jama. Several guards, about five
19 of them, were hitting him while he was lying down in front of the door at
20 the entrance to Room 2, and as they were beating him, the guards called
21 that Armin Alisic, his brother, come out of the dormitory. I don't know
22 how many people knew that Armin Alisic was in Room 2, but I knew him
23 personally too. He was sitting next to me, and he didn't dare reply or go
24 out, and he stayed inside. However, after about half an hour of beating,
25 I don't know whether the body remained lying outside or it was thrown back
1 into Room 1, but they beat him for roughly half an hour.
2 Q. Could you see this personally?
3 A. Yes. I saw it. I saw the silhouettes, the outlines of the
4 persons, because at the entrance to Room 2, there was no door. The doors
5 consisted of bars, so that you could see through the bars what was
6 happening in front of the door.
7 Q. Now, the Jasmin that was being beaten was from a different room;
8 is that correct? He was from Room 1?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And he was being beaten in front of Room 2?
11 A. Room 1 and Room 2 were right next to one another, so it's
12 difficult to say whether it was exactly in front of Room 1 or Room 2. But
13 in any event, I saw this from the place where I was sitting.
14 Q. Did Armin Alisic ever go outside, after being called?
15 A. No. He didn't respond. That night, he didn't go out. And
16 actually I know for certain that he arrived in Trnopolje, and he joined
17 one of the convoys that went to Travnik via Vlasic, and I heard from
18 others that he was killed at Vlasic when about 200 men were killed on the
19 21st of August, when they were separated out of the convoy. I heard from
20 people who knew Armin Alisic that he was taken out that day and killed at
22 Q. Mesud Causevic, do you know him?
23 A. I met him in the camp. My uncle knew him from before.
24 Q. What happened to him?
25 A. One afternoon, around 3.00 or 4.00, he was taken away by a person
1 who I think was called Zarko, the surname Crepulja. I didn't know him,
2 but Mesud knew him. Zarko Crepulja took Mesud behind dormitory 4 and beat
3 him there for five or ten minutes with an iron bar, and when he came back,
4 Mesud was so beaten up and swollen that he was hardly recognisable.
5 According to what Mesud told me, that the person who beat him was this
6 Crepulja, that they knew each other from before, and I was present when
7 this person Crepulja selected his victims for the beatings. Can I
8 continue? Shall I continue?
9 Actually, I was standing outside, and suddenly I heard an unusual
10 conversation behind my back. I turned around and I saw a person in
11 civilian clothes, and what was unusual was that he wore a watch and a
12 rather expensive watch. So he could hardly be a detainee because if any
13 one of us had a watch, it was not an expensive one or a well-known watch.
14 And then he asked one of the detainees whether he had any
15 certificate to prove that he hadn't slaughtered Serbs. The person who was
16 being asked this was astonished by the question. He didn't know what to
17 answer, and then Crepulja said, "If you don't have such a certificate, you
18 must come with me," and I saw him taking him behind dormitory 4.
19 In the meantime, the detainees noticed that something was going on
20 and together with my uncle, I entered the dormitory as quickly as I could,
21 having heard that brief conversation.
22 Q. All right, sir. Ibrahim Dizdarevic, what can you tell us about
23 what you know about what happened to him at the camp?
24 A. Ibrahim Dizdarevic is a school friend of mine, and we went to
25 primary school together. On one occasion while I was standing outside and
1 this was roughly close to the entrance to the toilet, I saw Cupo or
2 Banovic, the guard, beating him furiously with a police truncheon. This
3 other one was standing as far as he could quietly. Banovic continued
4 beating him. And Banovic was so furious that his truncheon was bloodied,
5 he gave it to Dizdarevic to wash it and return it to him clean.
6 Q. I see. Now, sir, you arrived on the 19th of July. Did you see
7 new arrivals from the Brdo area arrive on the following day and tell us
8 about that if you did.
9 A. I spent the night in Room 3 and then the next day about 10.00 in
10 the morning, the guards came and said that Room 3 had to be vacated and
11 that we should find ourselves room in the other dormitories. I took
12 advantage of this, and found a place for myself in the room where my uncle
14 About 11.00 or 12.00, buses arrived. For a time, they stood in
15 front of the weigh bridge, and people got off about 12.00 or 1.00. After
16 an hour of standing and waiting, these men were sent to Room 3, and what
17 was unusual was that as soon as they were sent to Room 3, one of the
18 guards was positioned at the entrance to that room.
19 Q. You say that was unusual?
20 A. It was extremely unusual. Until then, though I had been there
21 only one day, I didn't witness that. And I heard from other detainees
22 that not a single of the entrances was given a special guard to watch over
24 Q. Can you tell us, sir, what, if anything, happened to the -- shall
25 we call them the Brdo area inmates who arrived into the -- into Room 3
1 after it had been emptied?
2 A. For the first three or four hours, they were not given water at
3 all. And then I plucked up courage and I saw that one of the guards, a
4 guard who was standing in front of the entrance to Room 3 was talking to
5 one of the detainees. I took advantage of the opportunity and asked him
6 whether I could bring some water for the men in Room 3. He agreed, and I
7 brought four or five bottles of one and a half litres each and gave them
8 to them.
9 For many of them in Room 3, that was the first drop of liquid that
10 they received, and this was around 4.00 in the afternoon.
11 Q. Do you remember what the temperatures were like on the 20th of
13 A. It was a hot summer's day. The 20th July in Bosnia-Herzegovina,
14 you have high temperatures, about 25 degrees centigrade as a minimum.
15 Q. Sir, during the time period between the 20th of July, i.e. their
16 arrival, and the 24th of July which we'll get to in a minute, are you able
17 to tell the Court how these new arrivals to Room 3 were treated, what
18 happened to them?
19 A. I knew about 50 per cent of the people in Room 3 because they were
20 all either my neighbours or my relatives or school friends or something
21 like that. And I know that for the first four or five days, they were not
22 given any food while all the other detainees in the camp went for a meal
23 that they were given once a day. They were deprived of that.
24 I would give my ration of bread, I would put my bread ration in my
25 pocket. I would just take soup and then later on if I had a chance, I
1 would give that bread to one of my relatives who was injured in Room 3.
2 Q. So you were able to see what happened to the prisoners during that
3 four-day period, were you?
4 A. Yes. I was able to see it.
5 Q. Did you personally see any mistreatment of these people during
6 that period of time?
7 A. Mistreatment was a daily occurrence in the camp. I have mentioned
8 the examples of Dizdarevic.
9 Q. Yes, you have, sir. What I'm asking you now is do you recall if
10 any mistreatment or beatings occurred to the new Room 3 prisoners?
11 A. Dizdarevic was in Room 3 but this was after the 24th of July, the
12 incident that I have described.
13 Q. That's right. I'm asking now about the interval between the 20th
14 of July and the 24th of July.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. What, if anything, can you tell us about what you saw or heard
17 about the way in which the prisoners were treated?
18 A. What was typical of the camps was that whoever arrived on one
19 particular day, they were considered newcomers. And that day when I
20 arrived, I was considered a newcomer but I had the good fortune, for some
21 strange reasons, not to be called out and taken out at night-time. It was
22 noticeable in this period after the 20th of July when the men came to Room
23 3, hardly anyone -- actually no one or very rarely was anyone taken out
24 from the other rooms. Most of the people who were beaten were from Room
25 3. One of the reasons was that they were relatively new.
1 Q. So do I -- please correct me if I am wrong. Do I understand you
2 to be able -- that during the time period from the 20th to the 24th, the
3 prisoners in Room 3 were being beaten whereas the prisoners from Rooms 1,
4 2, and 4 were not being beaten as frequently; is that what you're telling
5 us here?
6 A. Yes. That's what I'm trying to tell you.
7 Q. Thank you. Sir, I'd like you to turn your mind if you would,
8 please, of the afternoon hours of the 24th of July. Did something happen
9 that day that would be of interest to the Court?
10 A. Yes. As far as I can remember that day, Kondic's shift was on
11 duty. We were mostly shut up almost all that day. One of the reasons why
12 I remember that it was Kondic's shift was that Kondic called out Eso
13 Bacic, my neighbour, and his colleague from work. He called them out from
14 Room 2 together with some other men, and they got into a white van. They
15 were taken out of the camp. Allegedly they were taken for labour, and the
16 they never appeared again. That is why I remember that it was Kondic's
17 shift that day.
18 Towards the end of his shift or around 6.00 when the time was
19 approaching for lunch or rather the meal that we had, we had very little
20 time to eat. There were guards around us firing into the air. They were
21 telling us to finish our meal as quickly as possible, and while I was
22 waiting in line for my ration, I saw detainees being taken out of Room 3
23 on to the grass lawn across the way from the road. Within the compound in
24 front of Room 3, they lined those men up to form two circles. They
25 ordered them to kneel down with their hands behind their heads.
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 And while they were taking them out, they were beating them on --
2 along the way. And throughout the time, they were on their knees.
3 Something else that was characteristic of that day was that we noticed
4 that there were far more guards than was usual and that there were some
5 new guards that had arrived together with the standard teams, guards that
6 we hadn't seen before.
7 Q. This beating incident that you refer to during the supper hour, do
8 you know whose shift was on at that particular time?
9 A. It was Kole's shift.
10 Q. Earlier on in the afternoon, did you notice anything unusual in
11 the grassy area of the compound?
12 A. Yes. In front of or close to those two circles where the
13 detainees from Room 3 were taken, just behind them and facing the door of
14 number 3, a table was placed with a machine-gun, facing Room 3.
15 Q. Had that table with machine-gun been there the day before or the
16 day before that? In other words, was that a new item that appeared that
17 afternoon or was it there before?
18 A. I saw it for the first time on that day.
19 Q. That evening, sir, whose shift was on duty?
20 A. As I said, it was Kole's shift.
21 Q. What happened during the evening and early night hours?
22 A. After that speedy meal that we had, I went back to dormitory 2, I
23 sat in a position at the far end of the dormitory, and the detainees who
24 were outside were being beaten up just then. There was an atmosphere that
25 was troubling so that the majority of detainees in Room 2 were very
1 quiet. It was hard to listen to all that. The sounds of beatings and the
2 voices of moaning could be clearly heard in the dormitory where I was.
3 Q. What happened next?
4 A. It is hard to tell exactly, but about an hour into the beating, as
5 far as I can remember, the detainees were shoved back into Room 3, so this
6 could have happened around 8.00, and it is also worth mentioning that the
7 guards were walking around the dormitories, in front of the dormitories,
8 insisting on silence, and as far as we were able to notice, most of the
9 guards were in front of Room 3.
10 Q. Did something happen later that night to shatter that silence?
11 A. In Room 2, there was silence. As for Room 3, where the beaten-up
12 detainees were, I can't say how silent it was or not. Around 11.00 or
13 12.00 that night, bursts of fire could be heard, bursts of gunfire that
14 were not fired in Room 3 but these bursts of fire were nothing new, but
15 they were so frequent and this insistence on silence and the chaos that
16 reigned at the time did not bode well, though I didn't see anything. I
17 felt where I was sitting that something terrible was going on. I found it
18 particularly hard because most of the people I knew were in that
19 particular room. The day after that, the next day, with the help of the
20 detainees who were in the other dormitories, who later told us about it,
21 they told us briefly what had happened, that about 150 men were killed and
22 that they had to load the dead on to a truck, and the guards also said
23 that all those who were wounded should also be loaded on to the trucks.
24 Those men were never seen again by anyone.
25 Q. Were you allowed out of your room after that shooting incident?
1 And if not, for how long were you detained in your room without being let
3 A. I think I stayed inside for three days without going out. It was
4 on the third day that I went out and what I saw was simply the stunned
5 faces of people I had known from before who couldn't talk, who were quite
6 beside themselves with fear, with horror, and I don't know what.
7 Q. Do you now know any of the individuals who had been in Room 3 that
8 you know to have survived that evening?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Can you name them for us?
11 A. My cousin Senad Habibovic was in that room, my aunt's son. And
12 with the approval of guard Radisic, he was transferred later from Room 3
13 to Room 2, that is, he joined me and my uncle and he told us about these
14 details. However, Senad Habibovic was chosen to board one of two buses
15 which, when Keraterm was dismantled, took this group of detainees away and
16 later, they never reappeared again. Another person that -- that -- other
17 persons that I knew that were in that room 3, Ibrahim Petrovac, a
18 neighbour of mine nicknamed Sofra, I can't remember his name, Dervis
19 Aliskovic and others. But the persons I have named, I remember them and I
20 know that they were there and I have remembered their names, but there
21 were others whose names I cannot remember just now.
22 Q. Thank you. Sir, was there a time after what I'm going to refer to
23 as the Room 3 massacre that Kajin spoke to the detainees in Room 2 where
24 you were? And if so, can you tell us about what you recall about that
1 A. One morning, just before Kajin was to take over duty, between 5.00
2 and 6.00, he appeared at the door of dormitory 3. He was clearly drunk.
3 And he addressed the detainees, but as far as one could learn from what he
4 said, he was addressing the detainees he knew from before, and he said how
5 he was sorry for everything that was happening, how he had wanted to
6 assist and had assisted as far as he could the men he knew. He mentioned
7 that the Serbs had suffered during the Second World War, that now it was
8 our turn to suffer, that he didn't find everything that was happening
9 easy. But what astonished me was his explicit statement that what
10 happened in Room 3 had to happen because inside were extremists
11 exclusively, and what happened to them was something that they had
12 deserved, in his words.
13 Q. Were you personally beaten while you were at Keraterm?
14 A. No, I was not.
15 Q. What were the camp conditions like and what effect did that have
16 on you?
17 A. As I said, we were given food only once a day, two pieces of
18 bread, and something that looked like a soup. And during those 15 or so
19 days I spent in Keraterm, I lost about 20 kilograms in weight.
20 Q. Sir, on the 5th of August, I understand, the camp was closed; is
21 that correct? The camp was closed; is that right?
22 A. Yes, as far as I can remember.
23 Q. What happened to you?
24 A. After people were called out and put on two buses, all the others
25 whose names were not called out were boarded onto other buses that arrived
1 and I was transferred to Trnopolje.
2 Q. And how long did you stay in Trnopolje?
3 A. I think it was until the 2nd of October 1992 when the High
4 Commissioner for Refugees and the Red Cross transported us to Karlovac,
5 the transit centre there.
6 Q. During your stay at Trnopolje, sir, were you being guarded?
7 A. Yes, there were guards. The camp was guarded. There were guard
8 posts around, but not to a comparable extent as in Keraterm.
9 Q. What were the camp conditions like in Trnopolje?
10 A. In view of the fact that we had lived through Keraterm before
11 Trnopolje, Trnopolje, for us, was a kind of freedom. We could go to the
12 toilet, for instance, whenever we needed to. We were given food by the
13 Red Cross. We could talk to other detainees who were camp inmates who
14 were there.
15 Q. Are you aware of anybody being beaten during your stay at
17 A. I remember the first day when we arrived at Trnopolje, I watched a
18 scene when one of the guards -- I don't know whether he belonged to the
19 Trnopolje guards or was just a soldier who came there, he beat for 15
20 minutes a person called Hasan while about 3.000 or 4.000 detainees and
21 other guards stood around and watched.
22 Q. Now, sir, I understand that you were there when a television crew
23 came to Trnopolje; is that correct, western journalists?
24 A. I was there. The first day when we arrived, an ITN crew arrived.
25 I was in the hall of the cultural centre in Trnopolje when I heard that
1 reporters had arrived, and out of curiosity, I went out. And on that
2 occasion, there was the coincidence occurred that the camera -- that a
3 cameraman recorded my presence on a videotape.
4 Q. And have you, since that day when you were videotaped by the ITN
5 crew, have you seen a portion of the videotape and were you able to see
6 yourself on it?
7 A. Yes, I have seen it.
8 MR. RYNEVELD: Your Honours, rather than play that again, I
9 believe that that portion was played to the Court before and I don't
10 intend to play that back for the witness.
11 Q. You have seen that part of the tape and you recognise yourself on
12 the video; is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 MR. RYNEVELD: Thank you. I believe those are my questions at
15 this time, Your Honours.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Ryneveld.
17 Mr. Greaves.
18 Cross-examined by Mr. Greaves:
19 Q. Mr. Zubovic, can you help me, please, about this: Prior to the
20 events in the summer of 1992, did you, yourself, take part in any way in
21 the political life of your country, whether as an activist or as a party
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. To what extent? Were you an activist or simply a party member
25 and, if so, of what party?
1 A. I was an activist, an activist of the SDA party in the elections
2 of 1990. And after the elections, it was decided that I would become a
3 councilman in the municipal parliament, but because I disagreed with the
4 manner in which the party was led and conducted, I just terminated my
5 membership in 1991, and then I stopped being its member.
6 Q. Have you taken any part in politics since the events of the war in
8 A. No, not actively.
9 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness' other microphone be switched
10 on, please?
11 MR. GREAVES:
12 Q. Mr. Zubovic, the next matter I'd like to ask you is whether, after
13 your release from Keraterm and Trnopolje, you served at all in the army of
15 A. No. After I left Keraterm, I was first in Karlovac, and after
16 that in Norway, and I am still there.
17 Q. And again, have you ever had or do you continue to have any sort
18 of relationship with the Security and Intelligence Services of
20 A. No, I have no connection with services of that kind.
21 Q. Mr. Zubovic, I'd like to ask you, please, about the group that was
22 formed in Hambarine as a self-defence force. Can you tell Their Honours
23 please, exactly when that group was formed?
24 A. I do not recall the exact date, but it was sometime in April.
25 Q. So that would be before, would it not, the takeover of power by
1 the Serbs, the takeover of the municipality?
2 A. Possibly.
3 Q. And can you help us about this, please, how did the formation of
4 this self-defence group come about, who was it who had the idea about
5 forming such a group?
6 A. The formation of such group was something that could be called a
7 daily occurrence in that period or in that area or in Bosnia-Herzegovina
8 as such. Groups of citizens felt insecure in the situation that they had
9 found themselves in, and one of the forms of self-organisation or
10 self-defence was to have these night watches who would simply protect the
11 population in that area, in that village, in that hamlet, from all sorts
12 of night incursions because we'd heard that they were taking place in
13 other parts, either in our municipality or elsewhere.
14 Q. Mr. Zubovic, had you done your national service in the JNA as a
15 younger man?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Would this be correct that the process that you have described of
18 the formation of a number of different armed groups in the area, would it
19 be right to describe that as typical of the military philosophy of how
20 Yugoslavia was to be defended, in other words, the formation of
21 self-defence groups?
22 A. I'm not sure I understood the question. Could you rephrase it,
24 Q. It wasn't a very good question and I apologise to you.
25 The formation of these groups of self-defence groups in the area
1 in which you were living, was that very much part of the philosophy of
2 how, in previous times, Yugoslavia was going to be defended, in other
3 words, on a very much local basis?
4 A. As far as I know, the definition of the national defence, yes, we
5 would be the members, the former of the Socialist Federal Republic of
6 Yugoslavia, yes, all citizens were duty-bound to participate in that. But
7 the manner of organisation or instructions or the way in which that was to
8 be implemented, I never studied that. I mean how people were to be
9 brought together, how the local population was to be brought together for
10 a kind of self-defence.
11 Q. You accept the general proposition that that was the philosophy
12 behind how it was to be organised in the event of war?
13 A. I am afraid the question is too vague. What we learned as
14 children about the defence of the country, about what we learned while
15 serving the army on the manner of defending the country, one could hear
16 about these things in the secondary school and then while doing the
17 military service. But I did not have any kind of training of that kind or
18 any special courses or special training in that form of self-organisation.
19 Q. Though the question was vague, I think you've answered it very
20 well. Thank you very much.
21 Were there a large number of such groups?
22 A. What does it mean, large?
23 Q. Well, in the area of which you were aware, the opstina Prijedor,
24 how many groups would you say were operating in this manner, regardless of
1 A. Well, more or less every hamlet which had an exit from the village
2 would have such guards, that is, a road, a communication with another
3 village or with a town. Those who had such access roads would have those
4 guards. A hamlet which would be in the middle of the village would --
5 people there would feel relatively secure and we, who would be on the
6 circumference of a village, we felt less protected. And so such groups
7 came about in this way if a hamlet was, for instance, somewhere on the
8 outskirts of a village, on the periphery of a circle, relatively speaking,
9 on the periphery of a village.
10 Q. Mr. Zubovic, you described the creation, evolution of these groups
11 as deriving from the insecurity of ordinary people from -- as to what was
12 happening in the neighbourhood. Is that fair?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And so that we just get a picture of it in our own minds,
15 individual ethnic groups would suddenly start to feel insecure about what
16 was happening and what the future held for them, and they would then, on
17 all sides, form such groups as you have described; is that fair?
18 A. Basically, yes.
19 Q. Sir, so we have a picture of your ethnic group, the Muslims
20 becoming frightened of what might happen with the Serbs or the Croats, and
21 the Croats being frightened of the Serbs and the Muslims, and a circle
22 like that; is that fair?
23 A. I can't hear the interpretation. Yes, more or less. But the
24 experience with what happened in the neighbouring municipality, for
25 instance, or in Croatia, yes, showed that those fears were real.
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 Q. And would this be a fair description, Mr. Zubovic, that what was
2 taking place was a disastrous disintegration of the former trust which
3 each individual group had for the other in previous times?
4 A. I think the question is just too general for me to answer it as an
5 individual. I cannot speak for the whole group. I cannot say how the
6 whole group, the group that I belonged to, how everybody felt in it, how
7 the whole group felt. I can speak only in my own name.
8 Q. What I was looking for, Mr. Zubovic, was your conclusions as to
9 what you observed taking place. The proposition is this: That in earlier
10 times, the racial groups were able to live together without fear. Is that
12 A. When you say "racial groups," you mean the population of the
14 Q. Yes.
15 A. Yes, they could live together and they did not fear one another.
16 Q. And that is very much thought by many people to be the outstanding
17 characteristic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, isn't it?
18 A. If I understand you, you think that it is a special characteristic
19 of Bosnia-Herzegovina that people could live together?
20 Q. I don't want to give evidence, Mr. Zubovic, and don't want to
21 answer the question, but that -- one of my colleagues in the first trial
22 which I did here certainly impressed that on me as being a characteristic
23 of your country before these troubles. Is that something with which you
24 would agree?
25 A. To live together in Bosnia-Herzegovina was a life without fear,
1 prior to 1992. That would briefly be my opinion about that.
2 Q. And to come back to where I started the question, the process
3 which you have described of the formation of self-defence groups is part
4 of the process or a symptom of the process of the disintegration of that
5 ability to live together. Would you accept that?
6 A. No.
7 Q. What would you say that this sudden creation of fear amongst the
8 different ethnic groups was a symptom of?
9 A. It was the effect of what was going on around us, and that is the
10 war in Croatia, the situation in Slovenia previously, and, say, Radovan
11 Karadzic's statement that in case of a vote on the independence of
12 Bosnia-Herzegovina, a people might vanish. Such statements clearly show
13 that one of the sides does not really have a very clear picture as to how
14 to go on living together.
15 Q. I wasn't at this stage trying to attribute blame, and I'm trying
16 to avoid attributing blame, Mr. Zubovic. Can we just go back to the group
17 that you became a member of? Were you one of those who instigated the
18 creation of the group or were you invited to join? How did it happen?
19 Can you help us with that?
20 A. I can say that people who lived around me, my neighbours, simply
21 would sit and discuss that -- those tense times and the situation that was
22 unfolding, and somebody came up with it because almost everybody around us
23 was doing the same.
24 Q. And was this the only such group in Hambarine?
25 A. No, it wasn't.
1 Q. How many other groups in -- what was the population of Hambarine
2 before the war, just give us an idea, not down to the last person but
3 roughly speaking?
4 A. I'd say about 300 households, so it would be 1.000, 1500, perhaps
5 more than that, 2.000 people, and the number of groups organised as we
6 were, I really can't say. I do not have such information. I never knew
8 Q. Okay. There were other groups, armed in a similar way, or in a
9 better fashion compared with your group?
10 A. Armed as we were.
11 Q. And did they coordinate their activities during this period, one
12 group with another?
13 A. Very, very little.
14 Q. Amongst some of the weaponry that you had were proper
15 military-style automatic weapons; is that right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And apart from carrying out patrols and reconnaissance around the
18 village, were any defensive positions constructed by either your group or
19 any other group of which you were aware?
20 A. To my knowledge, other people did the same thing as we did, but
21 there wasn't some coordination as to how things should be done.
22 Q. Can you help us about this, please? The fighting which took place
23 at the end of May, 1992, around the 23rd, can you help us as to whether
24 you know what the immediate cause of the flare-up of trouble was?
25 A. I can tell you only what I heard about that.
1 Q. What did you hear about the cause of the fighting?
2 A. About the cause of the fighting, right. On the 22nd of May, a day
3 before Hambarine was attacked, a white Golf, a car with about four or five
4 uniformed men arrived at the checkpoint manned by the reserve police, that
5 is men who were members of the reserve police in Hambarine. And they were
6 stopped, but what and who and how and who opened the fire first, I don't
7 know. All I do know is that after that incident, there were several
8 wounded, and that people who had arrived in the white Golf had the patches
9 of the White Eagles, and that the wounded and killed men in those uniforms
10 were taken over by the units of the military authorities in Prijedor, and
11 that night, around 9.00, a tank from the direction of Vukovo opened fire
12 on Hambarine with three shells as a warning, and then the next day, and
13 that was Saturday --
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Do you need all of this?
15 MR. GREAVES: I didn't need all the details and I was going to
16 find a convenient moment, if that's in accord with Your Honour's schedule.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. We are going to take a 20-minute
19 Sir Ivan, we'll hear your application prior to the break for the
20 evening. That's at about, say, five or ten minutes before the break. We
21 break at 5.15.
22 MR. LAWRENCE: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Zubovic, we are going to break for 20
24 minutes. During the adjournment, you're not to discuss your evidence with
25 anybody, and that includes members of the Prosecution team. We will
1 return at 12 minutes after 4.00.
2 --- Recess taken at 3.52 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 4.15 p.m.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Greaves.
5 MR. GREAVES: Thank you very much, Your Honour.
6 Q. Mr. Zubovic, I just want to retrace my steps slightly and deal
7 with one issue that we talked about earlier. The preparation of defensive
8 positions in Hambarine, is the phrase zemunica something with which you're
10 A. Yes, it is.
11 Q. What do you --
12 A. Something dug into the ground.
13 Q. Would this be right that in the area in which you were living,
14 such things were created prior to the fighting which took place in
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And in essence are zemunica underground structures designed to
18 store food, weapons, medical equipment, or even for people to shelter in;
19 is that right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And were you aware of those being created in Hambarine?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And are you aware of them being created in places away from
24 Hambarine, in other villages and towns?
25 A. I was not aware of that. I didn't know about that.
1 Q. In Hambarine, when were the first zemunica prepared?
2 A. I can't tell you when the first zemunica were dug out, but I can
3 tell you about the zemunica where I and my father were.
4 Q. Is that something that you personally prepared?
5 A. Yes. My father, my uncle, and myself.
6 Q. Were zemunica generally prepared on, as it were, an individual
7 basis or was there some organisation to them?
8 A. The one I made was done on an individual basis, and I can't tell
9 you about others. I don't have the information. I can't give you an
11 Q. If I can just now return very briefly to the issue of the first
12 bit of fighting in Hambarine, was one of the people who was in charge of
13 the Muslim side of security there a man called Aziz Aliskovic?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And was it him who was being sought for arrest in connection with
16 the incident involving the White Eagles and the white Golf?
17 A. As far as I know, yes.
18 Q. In other words, an ultimatum was sent requiring him to be
19 surrendered or there would be trouble; is that what it comes to?
20 A. Yes. Not just he, but also that the weapons should be surrendered
21 and that he should surrender as well, yes.
22 Q. The renewed fighting in the 11th of June, the cause of that was
23 the death of a Serbian officer who'd taken part in an earlier piece of
24 fighting; is that correct?
25 A. I don't have the information. I said that I heard that allegedly
1 this -- the killing or death of Zoran Karlica, that his units used it as
2 an excuse for the attack. As for the participation of Zoran Karlica in
3 anything on the 23rd of May, I have no information.
4 Q. It's right, isn't it, that even after that attack, you were able
5 to move around reasonably freely, for example, to visit your parents who
6 had returned home; do you accept that?
7 A. Yes. "Relatively" is the right expression.
8 Q. And in due course, you and your parents were able to leave
9 Hambarine and go to Ljubija; is that right?
10 A. What date are you referring to?
11 Q. Between the 11th and the 14th of June; is that correct?
12 A. On the 11th of June, with a high dose of risk, I reached my house,
13 and through the woods and gardens, we managed to leave the area and reach
14 Ljubija. But it wasn't a safe departure, using the roads we wanted.
15 Q. At this period, Mr. Zubovic, did you, either of your own knowledge
16 or from something that you were told about, did you hear of an attempt by
17 mixed Croat and Muslim forces to retake power in Prijedor?
18 A. Yes, I heard about it.
19 Q. Does the name Slavko Ecimovic mean anything to you in that
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Was he the leader of the -- that attempt to retake power in
24 A. As far as I know, yes, he was.
25 Q. Was he a Croat who was involved, I think, with the HVO at some
2 A. I don't know anything about the details. As I said before, I am
3 not even sure whether he is a Catholic or a Croat or of some other faith.
4 I just know he's not a Bosniak.
5 MR. GREAVES: If Your Honour could just give me a moment, please?
6 Q. Do either of the following two names mean anything to you, please,
7 Mr. Zubovic? Izet Mesic, otherwise known as Hadzija? Is that a name with
8 which you're familiar?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Did he live in Hambarine?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Whereabouts did he come from?
13 A. He lived in the street where my wife came from.
14 Q. And did he take part in any of these self-defence groups in your
15 area or in Donja Puharska?
16 A. I didn't understand. What has Donja Puharska got to do with it?
17 Q. Or did that person take part in the attempt to retake power in
18 Prijedor, as far as you know?
19 A. As far as I know, yes, but personally, I didn't see that person in
20 Hambarine in that period.
21 Q. Does the name Drago Matanovic mean anything to you in that
23 A. No.
24 Q. If I may now turn, please, to the 14th of June, 1992, that was the
25 date on which you were taken, I think, to the Ljubija football stadium.
1 It's right, isn't it, that only men were taken and only those between 17
2 and 30 years of age? Do you accept that?
3 A. It's a fact that that day there were only men, yes, but the
4 range -- the age group may have been a little broader, 35 or 40 even.
5 Q. And it was not just local men but men who were refugees, who had
6 come to the area after trouble in their own home zone; is that right?
7 A. Correct.
8 Q. Were you taken for interrogation or is this something that you've
9 heard from others?
10 A. I was at the stadium. I didn't hear it from others. And there
11 was no interrogation in the sense of detailed questions but simply listing
12 of people in Ljubija.
13 Q. Were you in fact asked some questions about whether you'd been in
14 possession of weapons and if you knew where particular individuals might
15 be found? Is that right?
16 A. Questions about individuals, yes, I know for certain, because
17 Curguz asked me about my brother, who has been in Zagreb since 1977, and
18 he knew my brother from earlier days.
19 Q. And what about weapons, Mr. Zubovic? Were questions asked about
21 A. I don't remember.
22 Q. Turning now to the 19th of July, 1992, it's right, isn't it, that
23 the man you've described as Rade Bilbija was in charge of the exercise of
24 detaining people on that day?
25 A. He was the leader of the Crisis Staff, and whatever was happening
1 in the area, he was responsible, and I also saw him that day at the
3 Q. Were there any parallel structures, other Crisis Staffs, formed
4 amongst the Muslim population?
5 A. Which area are you referring to now?
6 Q. Ljubija.
7 A. Such information is not known to me, so I can't give you an
9 Q. Again, on the 19th of July, the detentions were confined to men of
10 a similar age group to that which we talked about before; is that
12 A. No, not quite. Women and children and the elderly were brought to
13 the stadium, but the 50 I mentioned belonged to the younger age group and
14 they were put to one side of the stadium. But on that day, there were the
15 elderly and women at the same stadium.
16 Q. They were sent to Travnik, weren't they?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And on the 19th of July 1992, Travnik was an area which was not
19 under Serb control. That's right, isn't it?
20 A. Correct.
21 Q. And of the 50 men who were initially taken to Keraterm, 30 of
22 those were also sent to Travnik. That's correct, isn't it?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Was there any obvious basis for selecting those 30 men to be sent
25 to Travnik or was it just random?
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 A. The selection was done by Rade Bilbija. He knows why he did it.
2 I don't know the reasons.
3 Q. Did your family also, in due course, go to a safe place outside
5 A. On the 19th of July, my mother and father went with the convoy to
6 Travnik, and later, my wife and daughter as well.
7 Q. We're coming close to the end, Mr. Zubovic. I want to ask you now
8 briefly about the man you were led to believe was Sikirica. The
9 information which you had about him being the commander, that is
10 information which you were told at a later stage after your arrival at
11 Keraterm; is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And was that information given to you by another detainee?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Moving quickly on to the incident involving the massacre at Room
16 3, it's right, isn't it, that after that incident, you were, and by that I
17 mean all the detainees, were not allowed out of the rooms for a period of
18 some three days. Would you accept that?
19 A. With the exception of those who were working on the cleaning of
20 dormitory 3 and the removal of the corpses, yes.
21 Q. Finally this, please, Mr. Zubovic, between the 19th of July 1992
22 and the end of August of 1992, you and your fellow detainees were
23 completely in the power of the Serb authorities; is that right?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And would this also be correct that there was nothing during that
1 period which would have prevented the authorities, if they had so chosen,
2 from killing both you and your fellow detainees en masse.
3 A. I think the question is too broad. I don't know all the factors
4 that can influence a person to do something ranging from his conscience to
5 the law.
6 Q. I'm talking about the simple -- if a decision had been taken to
7 kill you all, they could have done it quite simply, couldn't they, at any
9 A. Yes. Yes, that is true.
10 MR. GREAVES: Thank you very much, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Greaves.
12 Mr. Rodic.
13 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
14 Cross-examined by Mr. Rodic:
15 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Zubovic. I shall try and be as brief as
17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] First of all, I would like to ask the
18 usher to place under the ELMO Exhibit 37, the drawing made by the witness
19 with his own hand. Will you place page 2 under the ELMO, the layout, page
20 2, please.
21 Q. During your testimony, you said that you spent the first night in
22 Room 3 and the rest of the time until you left Keraterm in Room 2; is that
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Tell me, please, during your stay in Keraterm, did you have
1 occasion to enter Rooms 1, 4, and to look around them?
2 A. It was possible.
3 Q. Did you, in fact, do that?
4 A. Yes, I did.
5 Q. Tell me, please, before the 19th of July, had you ever entered the
6 premises of the Keraterm factory?
7 A. No.
8 Q. As a person with experience and with a technical background, could
9 you roughly tell us the size of Rooms 1, 2, 3 and 4?
10 A. May I add something that may be of interest to you? My aunt's
11 son, Senad Habibovic, who was with us, took part in the construction of
12 this facility, and while I sat with him during the last days of our stay
13 in the camp, we discussed the size, the premises, and he told me how and
14 when they had built it. I have here a scale, 0, 6 and 12 metres, as a
15 basis because the width of Room 1 was roughly six metres and of number 2
16 about twice that, though to the right there is a corner, a niche in the
17 room, and I determined the size on the basis of the pillars that existed
18 in the premises themselves.
19 Q. Thank you. When you said that from Room 3 you went to Room 2 and
20 that in Room 2 you took up a position at the end of the room, as far as I
21 understood you, near the back wall, so could you tell the Court from your
22 position until the entrance, the one with the bars, what the distance is,
24 A. About 15 metres.
25 Q. So that would be the depth of that room?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Could you also please tell me the size for Room 3, the width and
4 A. The actual size of Room 2, I'm quite certain about it. As for the
5 size of Room 3, it's based on the first night I spent there. So the
6 actual size, especially the depth, I find it hard to determine because I
7 sat that first night right next to the door.
8 Q. Thank you. As on this sketch, a room is missing, about which the
9 Prosecutor put questions to you, that is the hut, the weigh bridge, and
10 you pointed to its position on the sketch, I should like to ask you to
11 tell the Court whether --
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Rodic, you asked the witness to give you his
13 estimate of the size of the rooms. We have had this information before
14 but I am particularly interested in it because of the witness's technical
16 Mr. Zubovic, counsel asked you about the size of the rooms, and
17 the Chamber is quite interested in it, in that information. Based on the
18 experience that you have, and you say you have technical -- you have a
19 technical background, could you give us your estimate of the size of Room
20 1 first, then Room 2, and then Room 3 and then Room 4? And if you can
21 also give us the depth of the rooms, and in relation to each, make a
22 comparison with this courtroom? So let's start with Room 1.
23 A. For the sake of comparison, the depth of Rooms 1 and 2 is the
24 same. The width of Room 2 is a little more than twice the width of Room
25 1, and I assume that the width of Room 1 is about six metres. Therefore
1 the width of Room 2 would be about 14 to 15 metres because there is a
2 corner here.
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: And the length?
4 A. And the length is about 15 to 18 metres.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: And in comparison with this courtroom, the one in
6 which you are now sitting?
7 A. It is very difficult to compare the two because this is well lit
8 up, and the room I was in, it was quite dark, so I can't make that
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, Room 3?
11 A. You mean the dimensions of the room?
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, the dimensions, your estimate.
13 A. Perhaps on this drawing, this drawing is not quite accurate, but
14 the depth of Room 3 would be roughly about five or six metres, and the
15 width, up to ten.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: And the length? That's what --
17 A. As I was saying, the depth would be, from the entrance to the far
18 wall, about five, six metres, and this length, about ten metres, as I
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: And Room 4?
21 A. It is very difficult -- or it was difficult for me because Room 4
22 is divided by a corridor, dividing the room into two. So the size is
23 roughly the same as that of Room 3.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: All right. Thank you. Yes, Mr. Rodic? I'm
25 sorry for the interruption.
1 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. I mentioned that on this sketch the porters or reception hut was
3 missing and you pointed that it was next to the word "koncentracioni".
4 Tell me, please, did you notice in front of Rooms 1 and 2, on the
5 left-hand side of this drawing, were there any kiosks or small huts like
6 small kiosks?
7 A. Here, from the end of this end to the entrance, there was nothing
8 there, but here, to this side, there was a kiosk, and a sandbag nest, like
9 a bunker position, covered with a piece of canvass or something.
10 Q. Could the record reflect that the witness showed where there was a
11 kiosk and a machine-gun nest, to the left of Room 1 therefore.
12 I should also like to ask you, before the porters -- when you
13 enter the Keraterm compound, at the very entrance, there was a mobile
14 gate. Do you remember that?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Do you remember that there was a kiosk there as well?
17 A. Yes, right next to the mobile gate at the very entrance, there was
18 a kiosk or a hut for the porter, or a guard hut or something like that,
20 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. The drawing can be
21 removed. I won't need it anymore. Thank you.
22 Q. On this drawing, we saw and you pointed it out, the smallest
23 premise to the right of Room 2 and between Rooms 2 and 3. Do you know
24 that bread was cut in that room, sliced?
25 A. When you say right, to which rooms?
1 Q. Yes, to the right of Rooms 1 and 2.
2 A. Yes, there were plates there and bread was sliced there.
3 Q. Was that next to that room that the food was distributed?
4 A. Yes, right next to it.
5 Q. Do you know that the food was brought in from the outside, that it
6 was prepared outside Keraterm?
7 A. Yes, where the food for the military was prepared, something like
9 Q. And when food was distributed to the prisoners, did some women
10 perhaps come?
11 A. There was a lady in black who worked there and distributed the
13 Q. You said that you graduated from university in Zagreb, that you
14 lived in Prijedor. I did not see this so could you tell us if you were
16 A. Yes, as of June 1990 until June 1991, for a year I was a trainee
17 in the iron ore mine at Ljubija.
18 Q. And after the training, you were not employed anywhere?
19 A. No.
20 Q. A moment ago when my colleague asked you, you explained that you
21 were a member of the party and how you quit that party or rather this
22 seat, the councilman that you were in the municipal assembly. If it is no
23 trouble, could you perhaps explain to us in greater detail that the reason
24 was that you disagreed with the policy of the party.
25 A. I joined the politics, I became involved there desirous of doing
1 something constructive, something good, but as the sessions developed, how
2 the meetings were conducted and moderated reminded me too much of the way
3 in which these things were done in all the then social structures of the
4 former communist system. I wasn't happy in the way in which certain ideas
5 were disseminated or embraced, and that was one of the reasons why I was
6 not happy and realised that my position, my role in that party was -- did
7 not really meet my moral criteria, that is, if I was in the party and yet
8 was unable to do what I thought was my duty to do, then that particular
9 party did not need me.
10 Q. When you spoke about the situation at the stadium, where Rade
11 Bilbija decided that you should be taken away from the stadium, could you
12 tell us what you felt at that time? Did he have a reason for it? What
13 could it be? Did he do it on the basis of some information or did he do
14 it at random? I'd like to know how you saw it.
15 A. Well, as we entered the stadium, and we came there on foot, that
16 is, through Ljubija to Gornja Ljubija where the stadium is, as we entered
17 into the stadium, and I had a backpack on my back, the mountaineer's
18 backpack. And he just indicated with his finger that I should move to one
19 side and to others to the other. So my feeling was that he never had any
20 time to even cast a look at me let alone know who I was. He simply barely
21 had a look at me and sent me to one side.
22 Q. You said that Bilbija was the leader of the Crisis Staff in
23 Ljubija, but did you know him before that happened? Have you heard about
24 him, did you hear about him before that?
25 A. From the very beginning of my stay in Ljubija, yes, the local
1 population knew very well who was Bilbija because he was their neighbour
2 and they knew what position he held. I did not know him personally.
3 Q. Did you know the man called Taranjac?
4 A. You mean Taranjac?
5 Q. Yes, I'm sorry, Taranjac. Did you know him before the war? Did
6 you know what he was before the war?
7 A. No. I did not know what he did before. All I know is that at
8 that time, he was the president of the SDS for the area of Ljubija.
9 Q. And Milan Curguz called Krivi, did you know him before what
10 happened in 1992?
11 A. Yes, I did.
12 Q. Could you be more specific, tell us what was he?
13 A. Milan Curguz comes from Ljubija and most of my peers who went to
14 school with me came from Ljubija, and whilst I was in the secondary
15 school, I know he often came to the school park and he was there and I
16 used to see him there and other people saw him there.
17 Q. And during your stay in Keraterm, did you know that Curguz brought
19 A. Yes. Yes, that's true.
20 Q. Did he do it often?
21 A. I cannot say that. I don't know.
22 Q. Let me go back to the way and how you were detained, that is,
23 arrested. You said that afterwards in front of the police station, people
24 were reorganised with regard to the buses they would be put on. Do you
25 know who did that?
1 A. It was Rade Bilbija.
2 Q. That is for the second time round, he decided and he decided about
3 that, that is, saying -- deciding which group would go where?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. [no interpretation] ... the number of prisoners who were between
6 you and the entrance door into Room 2?
7 A. During one of the counts, and that was around the 27th or the 28th
8 of July, they counted something about 570 people. Now, how they could be
9 counted there, I really cannot tell you, but it is really very difficult
10 to answer that question, how many people there were.
11 Q. And all those prisoners in Room 2, in view of that number, could
12 they all sit at the same time?
13 A. No, and I was the one who took shifts, who -- and my uncle changed
14 to make room for a man who had been wounded. That is while we were still
15 in Room 3, we had agreed previously that we would take turns standing so
16 that he could have more room. So some people -- some people -- even if
17 there was enough room to lie down or sit perhaps on those pallets, one had
18 to stand up now and then.
19 Q. What I should like to know precisely, so in your view, did at a
20 specific point in time, could all those people who were in Room 2 sit down
21 on the floor? I'm asking you this because of the room that a person takes
22 lying down, sitting down.
23 A. Well, if you're ordered to sit down, you sit down, regardless if
24 there is enough room or not. How do they do it is another matter.
25 Q. During your stay in Keraterm, were you interrogated by anyone?
13 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
14 and the English transcripts.
1 A. Yes, I was.
2 Q. Could you be more specific, how did that come about? And
3 something about it, as much as you can?
4 A. One day, I think it was the Wednesday, the 23rd of July, it's my
5 birthday, and I think I was called out for interrogation. The
6 interrogation took place on the upper floor of the room, not directly
7 above Room 1 but a bit further away. And that is where I was
8 interrogated. And one of the chief things that we discussed was my
9 political involvement, my political activities, and I told them the same
10 thing as I told you before, about how I joined and then left. And the
11 interrogation lasted for about 15 minutes.
12 Q. Did you know anyone of those persons who interrogated you and were
13 on the upper floor?
14 A. No, I did not know the person who interrogated me, and I did not
15 know -- do not know his name.
16 Q. And apart from those questions, which had to do with your
17 political activities, did they ask you anything about weapons, whether you
18 had, were in possession of weapons, had you taken part in any of the
20 A. Well, yes. There was a set of questions from particulars to
21 education, to political activities. Yes, there may have been some
22 questions like that. I don't remember.
23 Q. I'm asking you this because you told us yourself that you were in
24 this defence group, that you stood guard and had some weapons, and that is
25 why I wondered did anyone insist on this?
1 A. Could you repeat your question, please?
2 Q. Did this inspector who interrogated you insist on this question,
3 the possession of weapons?
4 A. Well, it was a customary question whether I had a weapon, whether
5 I had a licence, and I said I didn't, and then one of the next questions,
6 and we dwelt on this, was my political involvement, so that there was very
7 little that was said about weapons.
8 Q. In view of your stay in Keraterm, and the experience with this
9 interrogation, could you tell us if those men who interrogated you on the
10 upper floor, were they part of the Keraterm security or did they come from
12 A. What I can say is that during interrogation I was interrogated by
13 a civilian person and he was alone in that room. At the end of the
14 interrogation, a military came, but he did not ask me any questions, nor
15 did I communicate with that person in any way.
16 Q. And did that military person have some rank insignia?
17 A. I don't remember. All I remember is that he had a many-coloured
18 camouflage uniform on him.
19 Q. And did he come from the ranks of the guards, from the security of
20 the Keraterm? Did you -- had you seen him before or had you seen him
21 somewhere in front of the rooms, standing guard or ...
22 A. I cannot say that I saw him before that.
23 Q. Do you know a man called Zivko Knezevic from that period of time?
24 A. The last name rings a bell but I cannot remember knowing a person
25 called that.
1 Q. Let me jog your memory. It has to do with the police in Prijedor,
2 at Urije. Does that perhaps jog your memory?
3 A. No.
4 Q. When you testified about guard shifts in Keraterm, I remember that
5 you mentioned that Kondic's shift was the most dangerous one, and apart
6 from saying that during that shift you were not allowed to come out, could
7 you be more specific or describe better why did -- why did you define that
8 shift in the way that you did, that is that it was the most dangerous
9 one? Why was that?
10 A. One of the reasons is that, for instance, the first night I was
11 there, there was Kondic's shift on duty. In the morning, the door was
12 opened and the detainees were surprised to see how that night, during
13 Kondic's shift, nobody had been taken out from Room 3, that nobody had
14 been beaten. They were surprised by that fact. And one of the reasons
15 for that was, as they told me, that the last time that Kondic's shift was
16 on, a man was beaten to death, a young man from the village of Rakovcani.
17 So perhaps they were reprimanded for that and calmed down a little. But
18 there was this feeling when that shift was on duty, briefly -- to put it
19 briefly, it was fear. People were afraid when Kondic's shift was on.
20 Q. Are you saying it also -- does that also hold true of the time
21 that you were there?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. That was your personal feeling?
24 A. [No audible response]
25 Q. Can you tell me how tall are you?
1 A. 180.
2 Q. Precisely 180 centimetres? Is that how you are tall or perhaps
3 give and take a centimetre?
4 A. I should say to a centimetre.
5 Q. When you testified about the incident which happened in the room,
6 when a prisoner was sitting on the barrel relieving himself and two guards
7 came in, one of whom fired at the prisoner, you said that it happened
8 after the 20th of July, after you had moved to Room 2. Could you be more
9 specific about the date? Could you relate it to that shooting in Room 3?
10 Did it happen before or after that?
11 A. I think it was after that incident.
12 Q. And do you know the name of that guard who fired?
13 A. No.
14 Q. You don't know his name, his nickname or ...
15 A. No, no, I don't, I don't know the names.
16 Q. Could you describe him, what did he look like?
17 A. No. I was sitting, as I told you, at the end of a very dark
18 room. What I could see were outlines, the outlines of men who did not
19 come into the room. They were outside. They were behind the door which
20 was made of bars, behind the door opening.
21 Q. When you testified about Jasmin Alisic called Jama, how he was
22 called out, did you see him in Keraterm before that? Do you know when he
23 was brought in?
24 A. No, I do not know when he was brought in. I did not see him
25 before that.
1 Q. And amongst the guards who were around Jasmin Alisic and beat him,
2 was one of them that same guard who had fired at the prisoner on the
4 A. Well, it is difficult for me to say because the outline and the
5 voice that I could recognise belonged to a guard nicknamed Faca. He was
6 the one who had asked for Armin Alisic to go out of the room and said,
7 "We've got your brother, we've got Jasmin, you come out too. We'll
8 square accounts too." And that was Faca's voice.
9 Q. Did you know Jasmin Alisic before?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Can you tell us something more about him in relation to that
12 situation before he was brought to Keraterm, that is, before you saw him
13 in Keraterm? What did he -- what did Jasmin Alisic do?
14 A. He lived near the town itself, and I saw him around the town.
15 That was it. What he did, how he did it, I do not know. We were not
16 friends. I simply knew him because he was pretty conspicuous, he was a
17 big man, and he also socialised with some girls whom I knew before, and
18 that is how I knew him.
19 Q. Do you know if he had anything to do with the attack on Prijedor,
20 what you had heard about Slavko?
21 A. Well, same source.
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm sorry to interrupt you but I forgot that we
23 are going to spend the last five, ten minutes hearing the application from
24 Sir Ivan. So you will continue tomorrow with your cross-examination.
25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Sir Ivan.
2 MR. LAWRENCE: I wonder if this could be in closed session, Your
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, and the witness will be discharged.
5 Mr. Zubovic, we'll be adjourning shortly for the evening. You may
6 leave for the evening, but please be reminded that you are not to discuss
7 your evidence with anybody and that includes members of the Prosecution
8 team. Tomorrow morning, return at 9.30.
9 [Witness stands down]
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: So we will have closed session for the
11 application or private session, yes.
12 [Private session]
13 Pages 2621-2636 redacted private session.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
23 at 5.40 p.m., to be reconvened on Wednesday
24 the 2nd day of May, 2001, at
25 9.30 a.m.