Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 5010

1 Monday, December 3, 2001

2 [Closed session]

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11 [Open session]

12 MR. DI FAZIO: All right.

13 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. We are now in open session.

14 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you, Your Honours.

15 Q. The -- there is no dispute in this case that in the town of

16 Bosanski Samac was a Territorial Defence office or a TO and that it was

17 located opposite the SUP police station.

18 In the days prior to the events of the night of the 16th and 17th

19 of April, did you go to the TO office or at least near it?

20 A. I did, on the 16th of April, around 3.00, just outside the TO

21 headquarters.

22 Q. Okay. Can you please explain to the Chamber why you went there

23 and what you expected to see and generally the circumstances or reasons

24 for your attending there?

25 A. I saw many of my fellow citizens carrying rifles, so I went

Page 5017

1 there too. When I arrived outside the TO headquarters, I saw weapons were

2 being distributed and I saw this Marko Blazanovic, Alija Fitozovic, Vlado

3 Jasenica distributing arms, and I think Milos Bogdanovic was there on

4 behalf of the TO headquarters. I looked up at the upper floor and I saw

5 the Serbian police watching. I didn't dare take a rifle, and I went back

6 home empty-handed. I thought there was some murky business involved.

7 Q. What I want to know is precisely why you went there. You've

8 already said that you saw many of your fellow citizens carrying rifles.

9 So you went there too. Is that the only reason?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. Yes. Please carry on and answer the question.

12 A. I don't know. Some kind of doubt crept into me. I saw many

13 people carrying weapons and I thought why shouldn't I have one too? And

14 that's the reason why I -- why I went there. I started disbelieving my

15 own convictions as to what was going to happen the next day. As I said, I

16 was overcome by doubt.

17 Q. Approximately how many men were gathered receiving arms?

18 A. In my estimate, around 30.

19 Q. What sort of weapons were being distributed?

20 A. I think those Kalashnikov automatic rifles.

21 Q. How long did you remain at the scene observing what was going

22 on?

23 A. Ten minutes each time.

24 Q. What do you mean each time? Did you go more than once?

25 A. Only once.

Page 5018

1 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter's correction, the witness said,

2 "Well, ten minutes," not "ten minutes each time."

3 MR. DI FAZIO:

4 Q. And approximately how long before the events of the 16th and

5 17th of April did this occasion occur when you went to the TO and saw the

6 distribution of weapons?

7 A. I went on the 17th, in the afternoon, outside the TO, and that's

8 when they were distributing weapons.

9 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Zecevic?

10 MR. ZECEVIC: Sorry Your Honours the witness said 16th and in the

11 transcript it said 17th if that can be clarified.

12 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

13 MR. ZECEVIC: The last answer.

14 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, I noticed that and I'm grateful to my learned

15 friend for pointing that mistake out.

16 Q. Witness, the transcript says that you went to the TO, to watch

17 the distribution of these weapons, on the 17th of April -- or the 17th,

18 and I assume you meant the 17th of April. Is that what you meant to say

19 or did you in fact say or did you give us a different date?

20 A. I couldn't have gone on the 17th. It's a mistake. I went there

21 on the 16th.

22 Q. Did you have any views or expectations as to

23 whether or not you would be accepted into any sort of

24 Territorial Defence?

25 A. No, I didn't. I wasn't either hoping or wishing that I would

Page 5019

1 get one --

2 Q. You've described what you actually saw, namely the distribution

3 of weapons to the men who were assembled at the TO. Did you have any

4 knowledge or information as to who had organised this, who was

5 distributing these weapons, whether it was indeed something to do with the

6 TO or something else?

7 A. I think it was the job of the Territorial Defence because I saw

8 people around who had worked in the Territorial Defence before, Dzemal

9 Kapetanovic, Sarahudin Nogic, Milos Bogdanovic and other people who had

10 worked in the Territorial Defence before.

11 Q. Can you assist the Court in commenting on the ethnic background

12 of the men who were assembled at the TO receiving the weapons?

13 A. Muslims and Croats.

14 Q. And what about the police officers who were observing what was

15 going on from across the road?

16 A. [No interpretation].

17 Q. I'm sorry there is no answer recorded in our transcript. The

18 question, is to be absolutely clear, what sort of ethnic background were

19 the police officers who you have said were observing events from the SUP?

20 A. They were Serbs.

21 Q. Did anyone ask you if you were in possession of a weapon at any

22 time on the 16th?

23 A. Yes, my brother [redacted]asked me, not on the 17th but on the night

24 of the 17th, that's when he asked me, but during the day of the 17th,

25 nobody asked me if I had any weapons or if I wished to have a weapon.

Page 5020

1 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please.

2 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

3 MR. DI FAZIO: Perhaps if we deal with Mr. Zecevic's concern first

4 and then we can deal with mine.

5 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

6 MR. ZECEVIC: It is again the same situation, Your Honours. The

7 witness was talking about the night of the 16th, between the 16th and the

8 17th and in the transcript it says the 17th so if it can be clarified?

9 MR. DI FAZIO: I'll do that.

10 Q. Witness --

11 JUDGE MUMBA: Perhaps in Serbo-Croat the numbers 16 and 17 are

12 very similar.

13 MR. DI FAZIO: That might be the explanation. I don't think there

14 is any doubt in the witness's mind.

15 JUDGE MUMBA: This is the second time.

16 MR. DI FAZIO:

17 Q. I can't explain it, Witness, but it seems you said the 17th of

18 April, is that the date that you said or meant, or did you have in mind

19 another date?

20 A. The 16th. I meant the 16th.

21 Q. Thank you. And I want to ask you now about what your brother

22 said but don't use his name at the moment because it's a matter that tends

23 to identify you. We know which brother you're talking about. Can you

24 tell us what -- the circumstances of his questioning you about a weapon?

25 A. He thought that I had taken the weapon. He told me if I had

Page 5021

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Page 5022

1 one, that I should hand it over to him and then I would have no problems.

2 Q. Where did he say this to you and about what time did he say this

3 to you?

4 A. He said that on the 16th of April, in the evening, sometime

5 around 6.00 p.m. in my house.

6 Q. Did he give you a reason for his asking you this?

7 A. Yes. He did say that the army would enter Samac, that I should

8 not open the doors to anyone, and that I should sit tight at home.

9 Q. Did you -- what did you say to him when he asked you to hand

10 over any weapon that you might have?

11 A. I told him I had no weapons, which was indeed the case.

12 Q. In the middle of the night were you awoken by the sound of

13 gunfire?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Did you remain at home?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. I want to ask you about the morning, following the gunfire that

18 you heard. That is the morning of the 17th of April, 1992. That morning,

19 did you see any soldiers, paramilitary types?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Were they amongst those people, were there any locals that you

22 knew?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Who were they?

25 A. There were some local Serbs from Bosanski Samac.

Page 5023

1 Q. What were their names?

2 A. Fadil Topcagic, Jovo Ikamovic, Milan Celikovic and Drago

3 Borovic.

4 Q. You've described them as local Serbs. Does Fadil Topcagic come

5 into that category?

6 A. Well, since he changed his name, I do consider him to be a local

7 Serb.

8 Q. Very well. Can you tell the Chamber how they were dressed when

9 you first saw them?

10 A. They were dressed in camouflage uniforms.

11 Q. Did you notice anything about their faces?

12 A. Well, I did notice some new insignia they had, the new Serbian

13 army insignia, the tricolour on their hats and on their right shoulder,

14 they had some multi-coloured rags. Their faces were painted with some

15 kind of paint.

16 Q. Were there any armoured vehicles?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Where did you see them when you first laid eyes on them and

19 under what circumstances did you see them?

20 A. I saw them in front of my house with a Praga gun and they were

21 shouting, "Surrender your weapons." I went out. I saw them there, they

22 called me over the loudspeaker, the bullhorn.

23 Q. Was the call to surrender your weapon a call directed, as far as

24 you could tell, to you personally or was it a call that was being directed

25 to the townspeople?

Page 5024

1 A. It was directed to me personally because they were standing

2 outside of my window, the window on my house.

3 Q. The armoured vehicle, did it have a small

4 cannon or a machine-gun on it?

5 A. It was a Praga gun with -- it had three barrels.

6 Q. Where were those barrels trained or directed?

7 A. Right at my windows.

8 Q. Having been told to surrender your weapon and

9 faced with this Praga with its guns pointing at your home, what did you

10 do?

11 A. I went out and stood in front of them.

12 Q. Did you have your hands up or did you do anything to show

13 surrender?

14 A. I had my hands up.

15 Q. Having obviously surrendered with your hands up, what did the

16 group of men do?

17 [redacted]

18 [redacted]

19 [redacted]

20 [redacted]

21 [redacted]

22 [redacted]

23 He told me to go back in my house. And I ran into my house.

24 Q. Witness, I fully understand how difficult it is, but

25 if you could just try and remember not to refer to your brothers by

Page 5025

1 name at this stage. Just refer to your brothers if it comes up again,

2 okay? Now --

3 MR. PANTELIC: Your Honours, with all due respect, regarding this

4 specific situation, but we know that this witness has several brothers and

5 for the purposes of this transcript, and for the -- this

6 particular proceedings, it might be to some extent maybe tomorrow

7 difficult to clarify all these details, so I would suggest if we are going

8 to discuss all these matters, to go into private session or just for a

9 while. Thank you.

10 MR. DI FAZIO: I fully take Mr. Pantelic's point. I think it's

11 well made but I don't think it's going to arise as a particular issue at

12 this stage. There will be reference to the brothers at a later point of

13 time. We can go into private session then so that we are clearly

14 identifying which brother is which so the Defence won't be left in any

15 doubt as to who the witness is talking about. I'll ensure that that's

16 covered.

17 JUDGE MUMBA: So for the time being we remain in open session.

18 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, thank you.

19 JUDGE MUMBA: All right.

20 MR. DI FAZIO:

21 Q. How did Fadil Topcagic hit you so that you fell to the ground?

22 A. He kicked me with his boots.

23 Q. How long did the men remain at your home?

24 A. They never entered my house. I came out of my house. And this

25 is where it all happened, in front of my house.

Page 5026

1 Q. Thank you. But what I mean is how long did all the events just

2 outside your house take? How long did the whole episode take?

3 A. Ten to 15 minutes.

4 Q. Were you injured as a result of being kicked on the ground and

5 the attack on you?

6 A. I had some injuries on my ribs.

7 Q. Now, did these soldiers apparently accept your explanation that

8 you had no weapons?

9 A. No.

10 Q. Did they say or do anything that indicated they didn't believe

11 you?

12 A. When the Serb told Fadil whose brother I was, then Fadil let me

13 go, although Fadil knows my brother very well.

14 Q. Thank you. The next topic I want to ask you about is events at

15 a place called Buducnost or the Buducnost factory. Do you know of such a

16 factory in Bosanski Samac?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Did you go there at all after the 17th of April? Just answer me

19 yes or no?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Under what circumstances did you find yourself to be going to

22 the Buducnost factory?

23 A. All men of military age and all men able to work were summoned

24 to the Buducnost factory to report there. I think it was the Sunday, the

25 20th. That was when we had to report there.

Page 5027

1 Q. How did you become aware of this obligation to report at the

2 Buducnost factory?

3 A. Because there were posters put up in Bosanski Samac and also the

4 police went around in a Zastava 128 police car with a loudspeaker

5 informing people about that.

6 Q. Doing the best you can, what was the precise message that was

7 being conveyed?

8 A. That we should report, all the men of military age, to the

9 Buducnost factory.

10 Q. Very well. Did you -- I think you went along on the Sunday?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Did you dress in any particular way?

13 A. No. I was not dressed in any particular way. I just had to

14 wrap a white rag around my right arm.

15 Q. Why did you wrap a white rag around your right arm?

16 A. So that they could tell the non-Serb population of Samac from

17 the rest. That was some kind of a permit for you. You could dare -- you

18 could then walk around.

19 Q. How did you find out about the -- that particular device,

20 separating you from Serbs?

21 A. That morning, I met a friend of mine who was out for a walk,

22 Djoko Pisarevic. I asked him, "Can I go out?" And he told me, "Just wrap

23 a white rag around your left arm." And that's how I learned about that,

24 from him.

25 Q. Did you eventually make it to the Buducnost factory?

Page 5028

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Did anyone else have white rags wrapped around their arm or any

3 sort of white emblem on their arms or shoulders?

4 A. We all had them, all of us gathered there.

5 Q. About how many men were gathered?

6 A. Between 200 and 300.

7 Q. On the way to the factory, what sort of conditions were

8 prevailing in Bosanski Samac? And by that, I mean any signs of

9 destruction or damage to property, and soldiers or military vehicles on

10 the street. What did you notice or see in respect of those two matters,

11 if anything?

12 A. I noticed that the licence plates on all the vehicles that said

13 the Army of Republika Srpska, and I asked myself, "When in God's name did

14 they manage to make all those licence plates? They only had three days to

15 do that, yet they somehow managed to do it."

16 Q. What happened when you got to the Buducnost factory?

17 A. Jovo Savic spoke to us, addressed us then. He told us to take

18 our weapons and defend our town against the Ustashas. An incident

19 occurred then. They were asking for Igor Rukavina. I saw him personally

20 but I did not report him. After a while, Igor himself

21 said that he was present. A military truck came. They put Igor on the

22 truck and started kicking him. Then I noticed an unknown officer of the

23 Serbian army, who said that the rally was over, the meeting was over, and

24 that if anyone had any questions, they could ask them -- they could talk

25 to General Adzic and that is how this meeting, this gathering, ended.

Page 5029

1 Q. Firstly, were you left -- I'll withdraw that question. Did you

2 receive or did you receive or did anyone get any explanation as to why

3 Rukavina was being arrested?

4 A. Well, they told us that he was a sniper, a sniper shooter.

5 Q. Did the meeting conclude with any firm or clear instructions as

6 to what you were to do in order to defend yourself against the Ustasha or

7 any other instructions at all?

8 A. They told us to take our weapons but since the gathering ended

9 rather abruptly, we did not receive any clear instructions as to what we

10 were to do tomorrow, the next day.

11 Q. The men who arrested Mr. Rukavina, were any of them local men?

12 A. I recognised Miki Jovicic; he drove the truck.

13 Q. Was Miki Jovicic a member of the 4th Detachment?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Thank you. Following the meeting, what did you do?

16 A. We went back to our homes.

17 Q. Did you walk home with anyone?

18 A. I went with Namik Vajzovic and Hris Hadzikadic.

19 Q. Do you know of an establishment called Cafe AS in Bosanski

20 Samac?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Did your path home take you close or near to Cafe AS?

23 A. Yes, right past this cafe.

24 Q. Did anything happen to you as you walked past or got close to

25 the Cafe AS?

Page 5030

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Can you please tell the Court what happened?

3 A. As I came to the Cafe AS, Mr. Corolic called me by my nickname.

4 I turned around. I looked, and two armed Serb soldiers jumped and dragged

5 me to the Cafe AS.

6 Q. Can I just interrupt you there? First of all, can I ask you who

7 is Mr. Corolic?

8 A. He owned a catering business in Samac. He was also a member of

9 the 4th Detachment.

10 Q. And of what ethnic background is he?

11 A. A Muslim.

12 Q. Where was he when he called you by your nickname?

13 A. He was sitting in the garden of the Cafe AS, the open-air part.

14 Q. Very well. Now, these -- he called out your nickname and you

15 were then grabbed or assaulted by two armed Serb soldiers. I want you to

16 continue on from there but also, can you first tell us if the Serb

17 soldiers were locals or not?

18 A. One of them was a local and one of them was from Serbia. He was

19 a special, a member of the Special Forces. When I sat down, they started

20 beating me. One of them was called Nebosja Stankovic and the other

21 was nicknamed Sumadinac

22 Q. What about Nebosja Stankovic, did he have a nickname?

23 A. Cera.

24 Q. How did they beat you?

25 A. With a pistol. He hit me with a pistol, on the clavicles, on my

Page 5031

1 head, then he stuck a knife into my right arm to see whether the balija

2 blood was green. After a long beating, I fainted. When I came to, I was

3 all wet because somebody had thrown water over me and I heard somebody

4 laughing.

5 Q. Where did the beating take place? Was it inside the cafe or

6 just outside in the garden?

7 A. In the garden.

8 Q. Where on your arm were you stabbed with the knife?

9 A. On my right arm, into the muscle here, on the upper arm.

10 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, the witness indicates his

11 right, upper, inner arm.

12 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

13 MR. DI FAZIO:

14 Q. Now, you said that you were -- you lost consciousness and that

15 you eventually woke and that you had had water thrown over you and that

16 you heard laughter. When you came to, did you notice any people

17 about you or standing about you, or in the very near vicinity, and if so,

18 were you able to identify them?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Who were they?

21 A. I saw Mr. Miroslav Tadic standing there in the doorway at the

22 entrance to the cafe. There was Simo Zaric.

23 Q. You said that you heard laughter upon your regaining

24 consciousness. Can you attribute that laughter to anyone or is it the

25 case that you just don't know who it was?

Page 5032

1 A. I just heard laughter.

2 Q. What happened once you had regained consciousness?

3 A. They ordered me to stand up. They got into a white Kadett car,

4 and I had to run all the way to the Samac SUP with my hands up, shouting,

5 "Serbia, Serbia."

6 Q. Thank you. Just before we get to that part of your ordeal, I'd

7 like to ask you this: You were ordered to stand up and presumably ordered

8 to get into a car. Who was giving these orders to you?

9 A. I did not get into the car.

10 Q. Sorry. My apologies. I apologise for that. You were ordered to

11 get in front of the car and run. But what I'm concerned about is this:

12 Who gave you these orders, who instructed you to get up and run in front

13 of the car?

14 A. That member of the Special Forces, by the name of Sumadinac. He

15 ordered me to do that.

16 Q. So in the period of time just before you were beaten in the Cafe

17 AS, you saw 4th Detachment soldiers, a 4th Detachment soldier, in the

18 garden, Serbian soldiers in the garden, after you regained consciousness,

19 the Serbian soldiers were there, plus Mr. Tadic and Mr. Simo Zaric. Is

20 that a correct assessment of the personalities present before and after

21 your beating?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Now, you had to run in front of the car shouting, "Serbia,

24 Serbia." How far did you have to run engaged in this sort of behaviour?

25 A. Around a kilometre and a half.

Page 5033

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Page 5034

1 Q. Were you able to do it? Or did you fall down

2 or --

3 A. Yes. I managed to do it but barely. I

4 couldn't keep my hands up because both my clavicles

5 were broken.

6 Q. How far behind you was the car travelling when you were running

7 on the way to the SUP shouting, "Serbia, Serbia"?

8 A. About 20 metres behind me.

9 Q. Could you hear anything coming from the car, any sound?

10 A. Very simple sounds, shouting, shrieking laughter.

11 Q. What about the car itself, do you know who owned the car?

12 A. Yes, I do.

13 Q. Yes, tell us who was the owner?

14 A. It was Safet Dagovic from Samac.

15 Q. What ethnic background is he?

16 A. A Muslim.

17 Q. What happened once you had arrived at the police station?

18 A. Then Mirko Pavic was on duty at the time. The policeman. He

19 told those two to leave me alone and went upstairs to check my papers to

20 see if I was on any of the lists. Since I was not, he ordered eight

21 policemen to go with me to check my apartment, and that's what they did.

22 Q. So you went back to your home with these policemen?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Did they search the premises?

25 A. They did.

Page 5035

1 Q. Did they arrest you or did they eventually

2 leave?

3 A. They did not arrest me. They even dragged me to the health

4 centre.

5 Q. Were you eventually treated at the health centre?

6 A. Yes. I was.

7 Q. What injuries did -- or rather what injuries were you informed

8 you had suffered?

9 A. Two clavicles fractured as well as two fingers on my right hand,

10 and knife cut on my right arm.

11 Q. Were you hospitalised at all or were you treated and allowed to

12 go home?

13 A. I was just bandaged and allowed to go home.

14 Q. How long were you -- how long were you recovering from these

15 injuries?

16 A. From 15 to 20 days.

17 Q. In that time, did you report anywhere?

18 A. I had to report every morning to the police station.

19 Q. And did you, in fact, carry out that reporting?

20 A. Yes, I did.

21 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours would just bear with me for a

22 moment?

23 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

24 [Prosecution counsel confer].

25 MR. DI FAZIO:

Page 5036

1 Q. Just a minor matter, Witness. Earlier you described the car

2 that followed you as you were calling out, "Serbia, Serbia," and so on.

3 Were the two men who were inside the car -- who were they, first of all?

4 A. Nebosja Stankovic, nicknamed Cera, and this Sumadinac.

5 Q. Anyone else or was that it?

6 A. Just the two of them.

7 Q. Now, the reporting to the SUP, did anyone ever explain to you

8 why you should report on a daily basis to the SUP?

9 A. No.

10 Q. On the occasions that you went to the SUP for

11 this reporting business while you were recovering from your injuries, did

12 you ever see any of the defendants at the SUP?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Who was that?

15 A. Mr. Simo Zaric.

16 Q. Over what period of time did you report to the SUP? I'm not

17 necessarily asking for dates, although if you can give us dates, please

18 do. But was it a couple of weeks that you were reporting to the SUP, or

19 was it a month? Just give us as much information about dates and period

20 of time that you were reporting.

21 A. Around three weeks.

22 Q. So that would have taken you into May that you were reporting?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. About how many times did you see Mr. Zaric at the SUP?

25 A. Well, I didn't see a lot of him, but I did see him three or four

Page 5037

1 times in the time while I was reporting.

2 Q. Can you remember what he was doing, how he was dressed, under

3 what circumstances you saw him?

4 A. I don't know what he was doing there, but he was wearing a

5 military uniform, complete with a pistol, of course, and when I was going

6 into or coming out of the SUP building, of course, we met.

7 Q. Did you ever speak to him? Or did he ever speak to you?

8 A. Just once.

9 Q. And what was said and by whom?

10 A. If I didn't know how to be a gentleman, then I should be a

11 slave. That's what he said to me.

12 Q. Do you know how this comment was prompted, if indeed it was

13 prompted by anything?

14 A. No.

15 Q. Did you reply?

16 A. I didn't. I didn't dare to.

17 Q. How long had you known Mr. Simo Zaric at the time that the

18 comment was made?

19 A. Do you mean before the war?

20 Q. Yes.

21 A. For a long time.

22 Q. Had you ever socialised with him or had any sort of dealings

23 with him, either on a professional or work or social basis or was it just

24 that you knew him?

25 A. I just knew him. We were acquaintances and in his home village

Page 5038

1 of Tursinovac we sometimes sat down after a game, but it was rather

2 superficial.

3 Q. Do you know Blagoje Simic?

4 A. Yes, I do.

5 Q. How long have you known him?

6 A. I knew him as a doctor, but ...

7 Q. What about Miroslav Tadic?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. How long have you known him and under what circumstances?

10 A. For a while, he was my teacher in the secondary school.

11 Q. Do you know a gentleman named Milan Simic?

12 A. Yes, I do.

13 Q. How long have you known him -- or had you known him at -- as at

14 April, 1992?

15 A. I did not see him at all in the April of 1992, and I had known

16 him for a long time because he was a neighbour and he lived just across my

17 house.

18 Q. Look around the Court, can you, and if you can see any of the

19 men that I've asked you about, can you please point them out to the

20 Chamber and identify them? Identify them one by one, please.

21 A. The first in the row, Dr. Blagoje Simic in the first row. In

22 the back row, Mr. Miroslav Tadic, Mr. Simo Zaric and Mr. Milan Simic.

23 Q. Thank you. If Your Honours please, may the record reflect that

24 the witness correctly identified the defendants?

25 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

Page 5039

1 MR. DI FAZIO:

2 Q. Now, eventually you must have recovered from your injuries or

3 recovered to a degree from your injuries?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Did you start working at all?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. I'd like you now to tell us about that and can you inform the

8 Chamber first of all how -- the circumstances under which you came to be

9 informed of the need to work and about when this was made known to you?

10 A. That was sometime in the second half of the month of May. I

11 don't know whether it was the 16th or the 17th. A messenger came to see

12 me, Mr. Kosta Radic. He brought a piece of paper for me to sign and told

13 me to report the next day outside the SDK building in order to be sent to

14 that labour brigade, as they called it, to do my work duty.

15 Q. What is the SDK building? Does it house any particular type of

16 institution or does it carry out a certain function?

17 A. There are two institutions in that building. The downstairs was

18 occupied by the government auditing agency and upstairs there was the

19 communications centre which belonged to the headquarters of the

20 Territorial Defence.

21 Q. Did the piece of paper that you were given by Kosta Radic spell

22 out that you were to be sent to a labour brigade or was that something

23 that you found out afterwards? In other words, I'm concerned to know what

24 precisely the piece of paper told you was going to happen, even before you

25 got to the SDK building.

Page 5040

1 A. There were several names on that piece of paper, including mine,

2 and I was to sign that piece of paper and report the next morning at 7.00

3 a.m. at the SDK building. I didn't know what to expect and what would

4 happen there.

5 Q. Very well. Did you in fact report?

6 A. Yes, I did.

7 Q. Tell the Chamber what you saw when you reported the next

8 morning?

9 A. I saw about 100 of my fellow citizens, townsfolk who were

10 waiting outside the building. Nobody knew what they were waiting for,

11 where they were going or what was going to happen.

12 Q. At this point of time, had you recovered from your broken --

13 from the injuries to your clavicles, your broken clavicles?

14 A. No.

15 Q. What ethnic background were the assembled people?

16 A. They were Muslims and Croats.

17 Q. Did you assemble outside the SDK building or inside it?

18 A. Outside the building. We didn't enter. We were just outside

19 the building.

20 Q. What I'd like to know is this: Before you got to the SDK

21 building and found yourself standing there just outside it, did you have

22 any idea what was going to be said to you or did you have any idea as to

23 what the reason was for your assembling there or is it the case that you

24 only found out once you arrived?

25 A. I learned about that only when I had come already outside the

Page 5041

1 building.

2 Q. Thank you. Tell the Chamber how you learned about what the

3 purpose was in your going there and what happened once you arrived.

4 A. When we arrived, the lists were read out to us. In fact, they

5 called out our names to see if everyone had responded to the call-up.

6 Since most people had, they went upstairs into the building. I think it

7 was Dzemal Kapetanovic and the other one was Bozo Ninkovic. After a while

8 we were divided into those labour groups. We didn't know where we were

9 going or what we were required to do.

10 Q. Were you -- when you say people went upstairs into the building,

11 was that the assembled crowd, or is it -- or are you referring to Dzemal

12 Kapetanovic and Bozo Ninkovic?

13 A. Well, I mean Dzemal and Bozo Ninkovic.

14 Q. Were there any armed soldiers or guards about the place at the

15 time of --

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. You were divided into groups and where were you taken?

18 A. On to trucks. The trucks were parked there. We -- they put us

19 on to trucks and took us to our work sites.

20 Q. Did you know where you were going when you were placed on to a

21 truck?

22 A. No, we didn't.

23 Q. Were there guards -- or rather armed guards on the truck?

24 A. Yes, there were.

25 Q. About how many people were on your truck?

Page 5042

1 A. You mean the people who were working?

2 Q. No. Unless I misunderstood your evidence, you were separated

3 into groups, including you. You were placed on a truck and then taken off

4 to your work site. What I want to know is how many people were on your

5 particular truck, what sort of groups?

6 A. From 15 to 20 men.

7 Q. And where were you taken?

8 A. They took us to various locations. We never had a permanent

9 work site or anything.

10 Q. Can you recall where your very first assignment was?

11 A. It was digging trenches at Zasavica.

12 Q. How long did you remain on that particular project?

13 A. We were shifted around very often but we would spend sometimes

14 two or three days in one location, depending on the work.

15 Q. Do I understand that to mean that you worked at Zasavica for a

16 period of a few days and then might work somewhere else and then were

17 taken back to Zasavica? Is that a correct understanding or did you do

18 your work at Zasavica in one block, to so speak?

19 A. No.

20 Q. I'm sorry, just amplify that a bit and explain to us how the

21 projects were divided up time-wise. Did you work at Zasavica for a long

22 time and then were taken somewhere else or what? Explain it a bit more

23 carefully, please.

24 A. We would get our work assignment, for instance digging

25 trenches. When we finished that job, we moved to another place. It all

Page 5043

1 depended on the length of the trenches, but we would spend two, three,

2 four, maybe five days on one location.

3 Q. I want to ask you about Zasavica. Were there soldiers there

4 where you were digging the trenches?

5 A. Yes, there were.

6 Q. Was there gunfire?

7 A. Once, when three of my fellow citizens had escaped across the

8 Bosna, they opened fire after them.

9 Q. Just tell the Chamber what exactly digging trenches at Zasavica

10 involved.

11 A. We dug trenches at Zasavica in front of the combat lines in

12 order to come as close to the Bosna River as possible. We were not safe.

13 There was shooting and all they had to say was, "Those are your own

14 people. They won't shoot at you." Nevertheless, a couple of my fellow

15 citizens did get killed while digging.

16 Q. Was that at Zasavica or was that elsewhere digging trenches?

17 A. In Zasavica.

18 Q. Were you there at the time or is this something that you heard

19 about?

20 A. When Dzevad Murkic got killed, I wasn't there that day. I

21 wasn't around. I was a little further on. And when Idrizi Redzep got

22 killed, I was there.

23 Q. Was Idrizi killed at Zasavica?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Was that during your first assignment there?

Page 5044

1 A. No, not really. It was a little later, about eight days after I

2 started working, towards the end of May.

3 JUDGE SINGH: Witness, if you could look at P9. Get him to look

4 at P9 and just draw where the front line is along Zasavica.

5 MR. DI FAZIO: I'll do that, if Your Honours please.

6 If Your Honours please, I've got a clean copy of P9 which we can

7 introduce into evidence but for -- yes, I have a completely clean copy.

8 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. So we can have it given a number.

9 MR. DI FAZIO: Mr. Usher, might I ask you, please, to present this

10 to the witness. I see no reason why it shouldn't be placed on the ELMO.

11 MR. PANTELIC: Excuse me, Your Honour, can we maybe just check for

12 a second this map in order to verify this is actually P9 exhibit.

13 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

14 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, I'd just like to clarify

15 that in indeed P9 is the map of Zasavica -- of Bosanski Samac.

16 JUDGE MUMBA: Which includes --

17 MR. DI FAZIO: Which includes that town. I just want to make sure

18 there is no mistake about that.

19 MR. PANTELIC: Thank you, my learned colleague. Thank you.

20 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. It can be placed on the ELMO.

21 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.

22 Q. All right. Witness, have a look at the map there. Find

23 Zasavica.

24 A. [Indicates]

25 Q. Have you found it?

Page 5045

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Page 5046

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Okay. Now, looking at that map, could you please mark on that

3 map in pen -- and I perhaps -- with that green marking pen that the usher

4 has -- could you indicate a line where the trenches were?

5 A. Right. [Marks] .

6 Here were the trenches that were dug in the direction of the Bosna

7 River. And the trenches went this way. It was about 100 metres from the

8 Bosna River an those were access roads to the Bosna River.

9 Q. May I ask you to just mark a little more clearly, if you can, in

10 firmer, clearer lines, the trenches, the trench system? Thank you.

11 A. [Marks]

12 Q. Okay. Thank you, Witness.

13 MR. DI FAZIO: Can that be produced into evidence, please?

14 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, can we have the number, please?

15 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecution Exhibit P9-I.

16 JUDGE MUMBA: And are what are you going to call it?

17 MR. DI FAZIO: We can entitle it, "Map drawn by Witness M

18 indicating trench layout at Zasavica".

19 JUDGE MUMBA: Marked in green.

20 MR. DI FAZIO: Marked in green, thank you.

21 Q. I'd just like to ask you one or two more questions while the map

22 is still on the ELMO. Looking at the map, Witness, you've indicated that

23 the trench line ran somehow almost parallel or close to the river, which I

24 think is the Bosna?

25 A. Yes.

Page 5047

1 Q. But there were also trenches going in towards the river, access

2 trenches, so to speak; is that correct?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. What was the purpose of the access trenches? If that's indeed

5 what they were?

6 A. We didn't know what we were digging but later events taught us,

7 because those trenches were needed for the attack on Odzak and the entire

8 Odzak municipality, for the forced crossing.

9 Q. Now, the access trenches, did they come down towards the water

10 line or close to the river?

11 A. They came very close to the river. They stopped just two or

12 three metres away from the Sava River.

13 Q. Did you and your fellow workers ever work on the access

14 trenches?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Did anyone ever try to escape?

17 A. Yes.

18 JUDGE MUMBA: And before we break off, can we just get

19 clarification? Is that River Bosna or Sava River?

20 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, I --

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Bosna.

22 JUDGE MUMBA: Thank you. It's 11.00. We will have our break and

23 continue at 11.30 hours.

24 --- Recess taken at 11.00 a.m.

25 --- On resuming at 11.30 a.m.

Page 5048

1 JUDGE MUMBA: The Prosecution is continuing with

2 examination-in-chief.

3 MR. DI FAZIO:

4 Q. Witness, before the break, we were talking about the trench --

5 trenches that you worked on at Zasavica and -- you mentioned the access

6 trenches and you also said that people tried to escape. From where

7 within that trench system did people try to escape?

8 A. Do you want me to show it or ...

9 Q. You can probably describe it adequately in your own words. If

10 necessary, I'll ask you to show it on the map, but you just tell us in

11 your own words from where they tried to escape.

12 A. From -- as we dug the connecting or access trenches, three

13 people escaped on one occasion. I cannot really pinpoint the location on

14 the map.

15 Q. What I want to know is this: Did they try -- did they make

16 their escape bids or successful escapes from the access trenches?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Was that when they were close to the water?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. And tell the Chamber how they actually escaped.

21 A. As we dug at one of the access trenches, we reached a place

22 which was about 2 metres away from the River Bosna so they jumped into the

23 water and crossed to the other side. The Serbian soldiers shot at them

24 but the side on the opposite -- the people on the opposite side returned

25 fire and they managed to escape into the Odzak municipality using this

Page 5049

1 exchange of fire as a cover.

2 Q. Okay. And on how many occasions did people escape in this

3 manner by leaping into the water and swimming across to the other side

4 whilst digging trenches?

5 A. While I was there, the three people managed to escape, there

6 were some other cases but I was not present on those places.

7 Q. From whom did you hear of the other cases of escape? Was it

8 from fellow workers or in some other way that you were informed?

9 A. From the others, but we would go back together on trucks and

10 that's how we received our information as we sat down on the trucks, they

11 would tell us such and such a person escaped or we would tell each other

12 who managed to -- who had managed to escape.

13 Q. Whilst you were digging the trenches, either the trenches that

14 ran parallel to the river or the access trenches, were you exposed to

15 gunfire?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Were the -- sorry. I'll withdraw that question and rephrase

18 it. When Serbian guns fired, were they in front of you as you dug on the

19 trenches or behind you?

20 A. They were behind us.

21 Q. Was there any way of knowing when gunfire was about to erupt

22 when you were working on the trenches?

23 A. There was no way to know that. We never knew to anticipate --

24 we could never anticipate when the gunfire would be opened.

25 Q. Thank you. You also mentioned that in addition to escape

Page 5050

1 attempts, some people were killed while digging trenches. Can you just

2 tell us about the cases that you are aware of, where the people were

3 killed and whether or not you were present or you learnt of it from

4 others?

5 A. When Redzep, Idrizi got killed, I was there. There was gunfire,

6 an exchange of fire between the warring factions and a bullet hit him.

7 The bullet came from across the Bosna, from the Odzak municipality. He

8 fell. He was put on to the truck. And he died on the way to hospital.

9 When Dzevad Murkic was killed, I was not there. A bullet was fired and it

10 hit him while he was on the truck as they were loading the tools, shovels

11 and so on, on to the truck.

12 Q. Was -- in the case of the latter name that you mentioned,

13 Dzevad, was that at a trench-digging location?

14 A. It was in Pisari. It was towards the place where the River

15 Sava, the River Bosna joins the River Sava.

16 Q. Right. But all I want to know is this: You say that he was

17 killed while loading, tools, shovels and so on, on to a truck. What I

18 want to know is, if you know, can you tell us whether that was on

19 completion of a trench-digging job or was it some other type of work?

20 It's just the type of work that he was doing at the time that he was

21 killed that I'm interested in.

22 A. He was getting into the truck. The tools were already on the

23 truck and as he was getting on to the truck, a bullet was fired and it hit

24 him.

25 Q. Thank you. I understand that. All I want to know is this:

Page 5051

1 Before he was fired on, had he been working on trenches?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. And when the other gentleman you mentioned, Mr. Idriz was

4 killed, was that on the trench job at Zasavica or was it some other

5 location?

6 A. In Zasavica as we were digging trenches.

7 Q. Just answer me yes or no to the next question, if you can. Did

8 you ever do labour in Odzak?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. About when did you start doing that?

11 A. When Odzak fell.

12 Q. Okay. Now, I'll ask you about Odzak at a later point of time.

13 I'm now going to concentrate on the period of time when you first started

14 doing this labour up until the time you were transferred to Odzak, so the

15 period of time when you were still in the main -- working in Bosanski

16 Samac. You've described trench digging and one of the occasions was at

17 Zasavica. Did you ever do trench digging at any other locations apart

18 from Zasavica and before you went to Odzak?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Where did you do trench digging?

21 A. I dug trenches in the village much Grebnice and Tramosnica

22 Q. Would you please look at the map, P9-I that you have on the

23 ELMO. Can you see Tramosnica anywhere there on the map or is the map

24 covering an area that's too small?

25 A. The village of Grebnice is not here on the map.

Page 5052

1 Q. Okay. Thank you. I don't think that that is -- that map will

2 show the -- is big enough to show the towns.

3 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please --

4 JUDGE MUMBA: I was wondering whether it's really necessary for

5 the Prosecution case to show all the trenches, where they were dug. I

6 think it's sufficient to simply mention the place or the village and

7 simply say trenches were dug.

8 MR. DI FAZIO: Very well. Thank you, Your Honour. I won't pursue

9 that matter. Thank you.

10 JUDGE MUMBA: There was particular interest in the other one

11 perhaps because of the crossings across the river.

12 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, thank you.

13 All right. Thank you, Mr. Usher, I've finished with that map.

14 Q. And can you just tell us briefly, Witness, if in the villages of

15 Grebnice and the other village that you mentioned, whether you were

16 exposed to gunfire on the occasions that you were digging trenches

17 there?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Were you guarded there by armed soldiers?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Okay. Now, again concentrating on the period of time before you

22 went to -- or started to go to Odzak, apart from digging trenches, did you

23 engage in any other sort of labour?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. What was that?

Page 5053

1 A. Looting of Croat homes.

2 Q. There are of course villages surrounding Bosanski Samac and I

3 don't think it's in dispute that the villages are -- were populated by

4 either Croats or Serbs, in the main, but that there were very -- there

5 were no Muslim villages. Is that something that you would agree with?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. When you looted in a village, was it easy to tell if the village

8 was Croat or Serb?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Tell the Chamber how the looting process would start, how you

11 went about it, how goods were gathered and taken away.

12 A. In the morning, when we went to a village, we went there by

13 truck and we would go from house to house and take stuff out into the

14 street. Another group would come and load the things that we had taken

15 out on to trucks.

16 Q. Can you recall when you would be told which village that you

17 were going to? Was it something that you were informed of in the morning

18 or would it only become clear once you arrived at your destination?

19 A. We would learn about the village, the name of the village, only

20 when we arrived there.

21 Q. How did you receive instructions as to what to take out of the

22 houses?

23 A. We received instructions from whoever was escorting us, the

24 driver and the armed escort, the armed soldiers who were escorting us.

25 Q. What sort of goods were looted from the houses?

Page 5054

1 A. The household appliances, furniture, water supply equipment,

2 water heating facilities, TV sets, VCRs, everything that was of any value

3 was taken out.

4 Q. Where would it be placed once it was taken out of the house?

5 A. We loaded this on to trucks. In fact, it was not us but a

6 special group that was tasked with putting this on to trucks. We would

7 just take the goods out and put them on to the pavement.

8 Q. Was it a situation where you were organised into groups that

9 distinguished between those who would go into the homes and loot and those

10 who would be organised into collecting the looted goods?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Please tell the Chamber of the ethnic background of the

13 inhabitants of the villages that -- where you looted.

14 A. Exclusively Croat villages were looted.

15 JUDGE MUMBA: And, Mr. di Fazio, the Trial Chamber would like some

16 details as you lead your evidence because of these paragraphs in the

17 indictment, such as paragraph E on page 5, saying "the wanton and

18 extensive destruction, plundering and looting of the property," blah,

19 blah, blah. So the elements of those offences, I think, the details

20 should be extracted, if available, where the witnesses know what was going

21 on.

22 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. If you mean was there -- if you're interested

23 in any evidence of wanton and extensive destruction in the villages, then

24 that's something I can explore with the witness but --

25 JUDGE MUMBA: Well, it's your indictment. It's up to the way you

Page 5055

1 understand it, so you extract the evidence which you think will go to

2 prove those allegations.

3 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. I'll ask about that, but I would think that

4 this evidence is going to concentrate very much on the looting aspect.

5 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, I know, but this is just one of the witnesses.

6 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, thank you, Your Honour.

7 Q. You've told us that the -- the plunder and the looting and

8 the -- the organised fashion in which it was carried out and the fact that

9 it was confined to Croatian villages. When I say that, I mean inhabited

10 by Croats. Was there any damage committed to the villages themselves, any

11 sort of destruction or wanton sort of damage? Or was it simply a case of

12 carrying out of the looting in these Croatian villages?

13 A. Damage was inflicted. Quite a few houses were burned, and as

14 far as I think, it was not just looting but destruction too.

15 Q. I see. Was that -- who inflicted this damage that you observed?

16 A. Local Serbs, the Serb troops.

17 Q. When you went into these Croatian villages or -- I'm sorry, I

18 keep saying Croatian villages but I mean villages inhabited by Croats --

19 were the work teams carrying out the looting the only people present, or

20 were there soldiers about the place as well?

21 A. There were soldiers there so that there was a race of sorts, who

22 would be the first to grab as many things and loot as many things from the

23 Croat villages.

24 Q. Did the work groups in which you were participating have to

25 compete with the soldiers?

Page 5056

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Did this happen in every village or was it only occasionally

3 that this sort of -- that you ran into this sort of competition, so to

4 speak?

5 A. The first time I saw that was in the village of Hasici. It was

6 a Croat village where the villagers of Skaric competed with us as to who

7 would loot more houses. They used to say that they were going shopping to

8 Hasici, that's what the Serbs from Skaric said.

9 Q. Can you list the names for the Chamber of the villages that you

10 went to and looted?

11 A. Hrvatska Tisina, Gornji and Donji Hasici, Gornica, Tramosnica

12 and a part of Grebnice.

13 Q. In every case that you have just mentioned, was there the same

14 level of organisation that you have described, namely assembling in the

15 morning, being transported in trucks, looting the houses, placing the

16 material in the street, others tasked with the collection of the looted

17 goods? Was that basic procedure adopted in respect of the villages that

18 you have mentioned?

19 A. Yes.

20 JUDGE MUMBA: And were these activities always carried out under

21 armed guard?

22 MR. DI FAZIO: Sorry, that's -- thank you, Your Honour. That's

23 one other feature that the Chamber wishes to know.

24 Q. When you were carrying out these looting activities in these

25 villages, were there armed guards with you?

Page 5057

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Page 5058

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Okay. Now I'm still asking you about the period of time before

3 Odzak. You've described trenches and looting. Any other sort of activity

4 that you carried out in -- whilst doing this labour?

5 A. I also performed my work as a plumber quite a lot.

6 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Excuse me, Mr. di Fazio, before you move on, I'd

7 like to ask the witness in the Croat populated villages, where you were

8 participating under guard in the looting, do you know what had happened to

9 the Croat inhabitants of those villages, please?

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I do know. They all fled from

11 those villages. The troops that were in Kornica, the Croat troops that

12 were in Kornica, withdrew towards Modrica. The population of Hrvatska

13 Tisina took shelter in Grebnice which was controlled by the HVO. Quite a

14 few people from Hasici were imprisoned in the camps around Samac.

15 Tramosnica joined Gradacac -- I mean the population went to the other side

16 which was controlled by the BH army. So that the houses were abandoned,

17 left empty.

18 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Thank you.

19 JUDGE MUMBA: And the witness should also explain, if he knows,

20 when they were looting, collecting all these appliances and furniture and

21 things, on whose behalf were they doing this?

22 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you, Your Honours.

23 JUDGE MUMBA: You remember the other discussion the other time of

24 the army having paramilitaries or criminals as part of the army and that

25 was a whole argument as to who is who and whose orders was anybody doing

Page 5059

1 anything.

2 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.

3 Q. Her Honour's question takes us, I think, back to the mornings

4 before you went to -- went out on this looting. Who would come out and

5 read the instructions to the assembled workers as to where they should go

6 and so on?

7 A. Dzemal often addressed us, as did Bozo Ninkovic, and they would

8 always say that we were doing this on behalf of the Republika Srpska, that

9 this was our work duty, our work obligation, that we had to carry out.

10 Q. Did you ever hear of any local body or organisation from whom

11 the work obligation or work duty was controlled?

12 A. I think it was called the Crisis Staff of the Municipal Assembly

13 of the municipality of Serbian Samac.

14 JUDGE SINGH: Sorry, who is Bozo Ninkovic? What's his rank?

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know what rank he held, but

16 I know he accompanied us while we were doing our work duty, and wherever

17 there was a signature, whenever there was something signed, it said Bozo

18 Ninkovic.

19 JUDGE SINGH: Was he police or was he from the Serb army or

20 paramilitary?

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think he was a member of the

22 Serbian army.

23 MR. DI FAZIO:

24 Q. You said that you think it was the Crisis Staff of the Municipal

25 Assembly of the municipality of Serbian Samac that was the body that was

Page 5060

1 controlling this. Tell the Chamber why you say that. Is it something

2 that you heard or saw or read? Your sources of information are what

3 interest me.

4 A. When we were signing our call-ups for the work obligation, these

5 papers always said, underneath, the Crisis Staff of the Samac

6 municipality, but I didn't know who the president of the Crisis Staff

7 was. I never saw a signature in its entirety.

8 MR. DI FAZIO: Would Your Honours just bear with me? There is

9 just one matter that I want to quickly check in the transcript.

10 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

11 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. Thank you.

12 Q. When you carried out your looting, did you ever see anyone,

13 either the guard or the truck driver or anyone in your group, recording or

14 making any record of any nature whatsoever of the stuff that was taken

15 and from where it was taken?

16 A. I didn't see anyone, and we were not allowed to have any

17 pencils, let alone write anything down.

18 Q. Do you know what happened to the material once the truck had

19 come along and collected it?

20 A. It was taken to enterprises Mladost and Tekstilac. That's where

21 they drove those things.

22 Q. Did you ever personally go to Mladost or Tekstilac to unload

23 trucks or --

24 A. No, no.

25 JUDGE MUMBA: I'm sorry. Can you just include clarification on

Page 5061

1 whose trucks these were?

2 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, I'll do that.

3 Q. Her Honour wishes to know the trucks that played a role in this

4 looting, so let's look at it from every aspect. Did they have any

5 insignia on them? Did they use the same trucks that transported people

6 for taking away the goods or did they use separate trucks? Can you

7 answer -- that's a double-barrelled question, but can you answer both

8 parts: Insignia and did they use the trucks for taking the people and the

9 goods?

10 A. All the trucks bore the emblems of the Army of Republika Srpska,

11 the VRS, and they often used trucks of various enterprises, such as

12 Buducnost, Mebos and others who had plenty of trucks and sometimes they

13 used the same trucks that had brought us. While we were inside, taking

14 things out, they would use the truck to transport the goods away and then

15 the truck would come back. It would make two trips.

16 Q. In summary, therefore, you had army trucks, and trucks belonging

17 to commercial type of enterprises. Is that correct?

18 A. Right.

19 Q. Apart from army trucks and commercial trucks of commercial

20 enterprises, were there any what I would call strictly private vehicles,

21 that is vehicles that belonged to individuals?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Do you know where those vehicles came from, the ones that

24 belonged to the individuals that were used in the looting?

25 A. They frequently came from Pisari, Crkvina, Krusko Polje, Gornji

Page 5062

1 Slatina. Those were Serbian villages. They looted whatever caught their

2 eye, as well as cattle, cows, calves, pigs. They would load them on to

3 trucks and take them away.

4 JUDGE SINGH: Those two enterprises, Buducnost and Mladost, were

5 they state enterprises or privately owned?

6 A. Yes.

7 MR. DI FAZIO:

8 Q. I'm afraid your answer doesn't quite answer his Honour's question

9 because we are not sure what you mean. Were they state enterprises or

10 were they privately owned or were they both?

11 A. Those were state enterprises, Mebos and Buducnost.

12 MR. DI FAZIO: I also don't think Your Honour's question has been

13 properly recorded in the transcript. Perhaps the court reporters could

14 note that and rectify that at some stage. I don't think we

15 need to clarify this at the moment.

16 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, I think the scenario now from the witness's

17 evidence, there appear to be some private vehicles, trucks from state

18 enterprises and then trucks from the army. I'm concerned with

19 organisation and control. Again with the looting and the taking away of

20 the goods.

21 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.

22 JUDGE MUMBA: The trucks, the private vehicles, were there

23 different groups or were the trucks belonging to the army and to the state

24 enterprises under one control? If so, how did it appear to the witness

25 who was there on the scene?

Page 5063

1 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.

2 Q. Her Honour is concerned to know whether the trucks that you have

3 described as participating in the looting, were all part of one

4 organisation or whether there were different people using those trucks for

5 looting. In other words, were they privately looting or not?

6 Now, you've told us already that the soldiers were involved in

7 their own looting and you've told us of the role that you played and the

8 organised fashion. But what about these other trucks that you have

9 described, the ones used -- the ones that came from the commercial

10 enterprises like Buducnost?

11 A. It often happened that a driver would take the truck usually

12 drove for his enterprise and come to loot for his personal purposes,

13 private looting, sort of. And there was no particular organisation

14 involved. Whoever came first would grab whatever he could lay his hands

15 on.

16 Q. Thank you.

17 JUDGE SINGH: You were with armed guards. Did these armed guards

18 which accompanied you try to stop them from looting these other people?

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.

20 MR. DI FAZIO:

21 Q. You've mentioned that you would assemble in the mornings, your

22 task would be given to you and that you thought that --

23 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Zecevic.

24 MR. ZECEVIC: Your Honour, I'm sorry the transcript doesn't show

25 when the witness was mentioning something about the murder concerning this

Page 5064

1 looting? If this can be clarified, please? The question before, the

2 answer was: "It often happened that a driver would take the truck usually

3 drove for the enterprise and come to loot for his personal purposes." And

4 then the witness says, "That even involved the murder."

5 JUDGE MUMBA: Oh, yes. Counsel, can you clarify that with the

6 witness?

7 MR. DI FAZIO:

8 Q. What was the murder that you referred to in an earlier answer?

9 What was that about? Under what circumstances did it occur?

10 A. Marko Evdzinic from Krusko Polje came, for instance, to the

11 Hasici village and started dismantling the boiler from the bathroom and

12 then a Serb refugee from Srnice told him, "Don't touch that. I am

13 occupying this house now." There ensued an argument and that Serb killed

14 Marko Evdzinic right there in the bathroom

15 Q. What ethnic background was Marko Evdzinic?

16 A. He was a Serb.

17 Q. Is it the case that this was a brawl over looted goods?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Thank you. Now, just getting back to the issue of organisation,

20 please. You've told us that the -- you gathered in the mornings and tasks

21 were given to you, that you were given. Did the same pattern apply with

22 armed guards, and that you -- the same pattern applied in the sense of

23 target of -- namely Croat villages. You also said and gave your reasons

24 as to why you thought that the Crisis Staff was organised -- was connected

25 with the organisation of that. You then went on to describe trucks that

Page 5065

1 were used. When you were carrying out that sort of organised looting that

2 you have described, were trucks used from private, commercial enterprises

3 such as Buducnost and the other enterprise that you mentioned?

4 A. Buducnost and Mebos are not privately owned enterprises but

5 their trucks, together with the drivers, had been requisitioned so the

6 same drivers continued to drive those trucks.

7 Q. What I want to know is those trucks --

8 MR. PANTELIC: I do apologise.

9 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Pantelic.

10 MR. PANTELIC: The translation is not accurate. It is not

11 requisitioned. It is -- he has been not been requisitioned -- they

12 were mobilised. He said, they were mobilised, not requisitioned. The

13 witness said the drivers and the trucks were mobilised, in B/C/S

14 language. Is that correct, Witness? So he confirmed. It was not

15 requisitioned. It's another word. Thank you.

16 JUDGE MUMBA: Maybe while we are at it, Mr. di Fazio, you may as

17 well get into the details so that we understand the difference between

18 requisitioning and mobilising.

19 MR. DI FAZIO: I'll do that if, Your Honours please.

20 JUDGE MUMBA: And also commandeering.

21 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. Thank you, Your Honour.

22 Q. Have you got any idea as to how these trucks from these

23 enterprises came to be used in the process of looting?

24 A. There was no control over that of any kind, and often this Marko

25 Evdzinic whom I mentioned before, he was a driver for the Buducnost

Page 5066

1 enterprise. In fact, no, I'm mistaken. It was his brother Skaja, whereas

2 Marko was a mason. And Skaja would often take a truck and come around.

3 He needed this or that. There was no control over who was taking what.

4 And where they were driving it.

5 Q. Do you know how the drivers who drove the trucks that took you

6 to the looting locations were selected?

7 A. I think they had received those military call-ups because all of

8 them were Serbs. They were wearing uniforms and they could move around

9 those villages.

10 Q. I just want to be absolutely clear on these -- on the use of the

11 enterprise trucks. Were you taken to the looting locations in such

12 trucks?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. You've also mentioned military-type trucks. Were you taken to

15 the looting locations in such trucks?

16 A. No, not in military trucks. We were not driven in military

17 trucks.

18 Q. Looking back, thinking back now, of the trucks that took you to

19 the looting locations, the villages where the looting occurred, were they

20 mainly trucks belonging to these private enterprises or were they mainly

21 trucks belonging to private individuals, or were they a combination of

22 both?

23 A. There were many trucks that belonged to those enterprises, as

24 well as private vehicles such as trucks, tractors and so on.

25 Q. When you assembled in the mornings to be given your assignment,

Page 5067

1 were the trucks already there?

2 A. Yes, they were.

3 Q. Were the drivers and the guards already there assembled?

4 A. Yes, they were.

5 Q. From -- I'll withdraw that. Someone gave the instructions in

6 the morning. From where did that person emerge?

7 A. From the communications centre. She would climb down and get

8 out into the yard and then they would -- she would read the names of the

9 people who were going to work that day.

10 Q. You say "she." Was this a lady? And if so, do you know the

11 name of the person?

12 A. No. I mean it was not a woman. Those were Dzemal Kapetanovic

13 and Bozo Ninkovic. Those were the persons who issued us work assignments.

14 Q. Was there some sort of pattern or consistency in the people who

15 issued the work assignment, namely was it the same people or group of

16 people who issued instructions?

17 A. As far as I know, it was.

18 Q. You've mentioned that the instructions were issued to assemble

19 workers from in front of this place called the SDK factory or the

20 communications place. Was the location from which you received your work

21 assignments changed?

22 A. Not as far as I know. That location where we received work

23 assignments applied for a while, and later we were moved to the local

24 commune in the centre of town in order to avoid crowding, because we were

25 300 or 400 men, so they moved us to the local commune of Serbian Samac and

Page 5068

1 that was our starting point.

2 Q. Once that had occurred, was there any change in the procedure

3 that you've described regarding the assembling of the men in the morning,

4 the handing out of assignments, and then the movement of the --

5 A. No. Everything was the same.

6 JUDGE SINGH: How many workers would be assembled each morning,

7 approximately, and how many trucks would go out?

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From 300 to 400 workers would

9 assemble and there would be 10 to 15 trucks every morning.

10 MR. DI FAZIO:

11 Q. In the assembled crowd, were there women?

12 A. Yes, there were.

13 Q. Did you become aware of the sorts of work that the women were

14 doing as opposed to men?

15 A. The women worked on farms around Samac and they went there to

16 milk cows.

17 Q. What sort of hours did you -- over what number of hours did you

18 perform this labour?

19 A. From 10 to 12 hours. We worked from 7.00 to 7.00, depending on

20 the curfew, but on the average, that was it.

21 Q. Did you ever have time off?

22 A. No.

23 Q. Do you know a gentleman named Sakib Subasic?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Did he participate in this labour that you have described?

Page 5069

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Page 5070

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Did you ever see an episode involving him?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Describe it, please.

5 A. He asked Bozo Ninkovic for permission to stay at home the next

6 day because it was Bajram, a holiday. Bozo laughed and that Stojan

7 Blagojevic later approached us and said, "Where is the man who wants to

8 celebrate Bajram?" He said, "It's me." And Stojan Blagojevic started

9 beating him in our plain sight. He fell to the ground and Stojan

10 Blogojevic ripped his shirt and saw a tattoo depicting a mosque on his

11 chest. And then Stojan continued kicking him while he was lying down

12 until the guards stopped him. And Sakib was later sent to work as usual

13 in Obudovac.

14 Q. Where did this beating take place?

15 A. That was sometime during the last days before my transfer, and

16 it happened outside the SDK building or the building of the communications

17 centre.

18 Q. Was this -- did it occur at a time that the workers were

19 assembling to be given their tasks?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Were you fed when you were performing either the looting or the

22 trench digging?

23 A. No. We got one meal, one can of meat paste a day, of Spam,

24 canned Spam, and sometimes the Serbian troops shared the thick bean soup

25 with us.

Page 5071

1 Q. In the time that you worked whilst being handed out these

2 assignment, did you ever receive any pay?

3 A. No.

4 Q. I want to make sure that the Chamber understands in summary,

5 therefore, your evidence regarding the looting. Is this the situation:

6 There were numbers of people who were involved in looting. You and the

7 organised workers from the town?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Private citizens of Serbian background who were free to loot in

10 the villages, and soldiers who were also engaged in the looting?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Apart from those categories, was there anyone else involved in

13 looting other than private citizens of Serbian background, soldiers and

14 the groups, the work groups in which you participated?

15 A. The local Serbian population from the surrounding villages took

16 part in it too.

17 Q. That's what I mean. They were private citizens just coming in

18 to go shopping, as you put it?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. I just want to ask you some questions about the two places from

21 which you received your work assignments. One was the SDK communications

22 centre and the other was the community hall or community centre. In the

23 mornings when you were assembled at either of those two locations, did you

24 ever see any of the defendants?

25 A. I often saw Mr. Simo Zaric, and when we moved to the local

Page 5072

1 commune, I used to see Miroslav Tadic upstairs.

2 Q. What would Mr. Simo Zaric be doing on the occasions that you saw

3 him?

4 A. He would walk past us on his way to see Bozo and the other

5 people who were making the lists.

6 Q. When you say "us," I want to be absolutely clear. Are you

7 referring to the assembled workers?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. And did he walk past the assembled workers when they were

10 assembled both at the SDK factory and the communication -- sorry, and the

11 community centre?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. How would he be dressed and what would he be doing, as far as

14 you could tell?

15 A. He had a military uniform on. He was armed with a bag, either

16 hanging on his shoulder or carried in his hand. That's how he walked past

17 the soldiers and the assembled workers.

18 Q. As far as the SDK centre is concerned, do you know where he was

19 going and what he was doing there?

20 A. I don't know what he was doing there but he had to pass by the

21 assembled workers because that was the only entrance that was used also

22 for the communications centre. And just across the road was the entrance

23 that was used by the SDK, so he had no other way to go in. He had to walk

24 past us, the assembled workers.

25 Q. And you also mentioned Mr. Miroslav Tadic being upstairs at the

Page 5073

1 local commune. Did you see him walk past in the same way as Mr. Zaric or

2 did you see him under different circumstances?

3 A. I saw him often, since my brother [redacted]worked with him in the

4 local commune, and that's how I saw him. That's why I was able to see

5 him.

6 Q. Try and take care not to mention your brother's name. We know

7 which brother you're referring to now but -- that's okay. I know it's

8 difficult but just, if you can remember.

9 Now, you said that your brother worked with him in the local

10 commune and that's how you came to see him. Can you explain that a little

11 more fully to the Chamber? How was it -- or rather, what's the connection

12 between your brother and your seeing Mr. Tadic?

13 A. I don't know precisely what type of work my brother did, but I

14 think he was a clerk of some sort. He made lists. I don't know what he

15 was doing, but I know that Mr. Tadic was his boss at that time.

16 Q. Okay. And is this brother -- was he a member of the 4th

17 Detachment?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Do you know what sort of lists he was making?

20 A. I don't know.

21 Q. How did you come to see him?

22 A. I often went to see my brother too ask him for a cigarette, and

23 when he saw me, he saw me because the corridor was quite long, and he

24 would tell me, "I told you 100 times not to climb up if you want a

25 cigarette." So I had to go back down.

Page 5074

1 Q. In these times that you're describing, were any of your brothers

2 who were in the 4th Detachment able to assist you or willing to assist

3 you?

4 A. No. My youngest brother left Samac and the two that remained

5 were not willing to help me.

6 Q. When you went upstairs to try and get a cigarette off your

7 brother, what sort of thing -- what sort of activity could you see that

8 was going on in the community centre?

9 A. I saw that quite a few people came and when I asked them what

10 they were doing there, they would tell me that they went to get their

11 names signed up for an exchange with Mr. Tadic.

12 Q. What was the ethnic background of the people who you would see

13 trying to get their names signed up?

14 A. Muslims and Croats.

15 Q. Did you ever see the men who told the assembled workers

16 downstairs what their work assignments were to be, upstairs in the area

17 around where your brother and Mr. Tadic were located?

18 A. No. I did not see these people. They did not say what they

19 were doing.

20 Q. Okay. Thank you. Now, I want to ask you about Odzak. When did

21 you start going to Odzak?

22 A. After Odzak fell. Odzak fell, I think, on the 7th of July.

23 Sometime around the 10th or perhaps 12th of July, I can't remember the

24 exact date, but it was the first half of July, that's when I started going

25 to Odzak to work.

Page 5075

1 Q. And tell the Chamber this: Did you get your assignments in

2 Bosanski Samac but that involved going to Odzak to work or did you move to

3 Odzak on a more permanent basis?

4 A. We were assigned to go to Odzak in Samac but in Odzak we were

5 given specific tasks, the things that we had to do.

6 Q. Okay. Do you know what the military situation was in Odzak

7 prior to Odzak falling?

8 A. I know that Odzak was held by the HVO, the Croatian Defence

9 Council, and since I was not there, I did not know what the situation was

10 in Odzak when Odzak fell.

11 Q. Thank you. Was the situation in Odzak ever commented on in

12 the -- over the radio, local radio in Bosanski Samac?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Did any of the defendants ever comment on the situation in Odzak

15 over the radio?

16 A. The town commander, Mr. Simo Zaric, made some comments. He

17 said, on -- over the Serbian radio of Samac, "If Croats do not let the

18 captured Serbs go in Odzak, we will be forced to take reprisals in

19 Samac." And as a result, the camp in the high school was opened and

20 Croats were gathered up and imprisoned there. Whereas the Croat women

21 were imprisoned in the school in Crkvina.

22 Q. Let's be careful about what was said over the radio and anything

23 that you may have concluded, okay? And let's analyse your last answer a

24 bit more carefully. You said that as a result, the camp in the high

25 school was opened and Croats were gathered up and imprisoned there. And

Page 5076

1 that Croat women were imprisoned in the school in Crkvina. Did those

2 events that you -- that I've just mentioned to you, occur following the

3 radio address by Mr. Simo Zaric?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Did Mr. Simo Zaric say that Croats would be gathered up and

6 imprisoned or do you conclude that that is something that occurred in

7 response to the situation in Odzak?

8 A. He said that there would be reprisals, and it is my conclusion

9 that the fact that camps appeared in Samac in the high school and the fact

10 that women were taken to the school in Crkvina, that this was the result.

11 That was my conclusion.

12 Q. Thank you. I'd like to know why you draw that conclusion. Is

13 it just because of the timing of the speech and those events or do you

14 have any other information that you -- leads you to that conclusion?

15 A. I think it was because of the timing, because when he spoke on

16 the radio, the camp was -- the camps were opened two days later and that

17 is why I connected the two events, the speech and the opening of the

18 camps.

19 Q. Do you recall Mr. Simo Zaric ever explaining on radio what

20 precisely the reprisals might be?

21 A. No. He did not explain that.

22 Q. Did you ever see how the women were rounded up for the Zasavica

23 camp?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. You Saw it with your own eyes?

Page 5077

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Well, tell us all about that, please.

3 A. Do you want me to go from the beginning, after the -- after the

4 great escape across the Sava River when Muslims swam across into

5 Croatia? The very next day, the military trucks would take the families

6 of all those who managed to escape and take them to Zasavica, the truck

7 went from house to house picking up the women and children according to a

8 list that they had, the list of all the escapees. And the women and

9 children were taken into the trucks with only the clothes that they had on

10 their backs and taken to the camps. I saw when the wife and two children,

11 aged 2 and 4, of Huso Bajraktarevic, I saw them being put onto the truck.

12 And some other cases like that, all over Samac.

13 Q. I'm going to ask you about the great escape, as you put it, on

14 another occasion. Let's just concentrate on these trucks and the

15 gathering up of the women and children. Did you see the trucks gathering

16 up the women and children on your way to work or after work? How is it

17 that you had time to see the trucks and this activity?

18 A. I think I worked in Samac. I did some work for the town water

19 supply, because the pipes were broke, some of the pipes were broken and

20 that is why I was assigned this work. As I went from street to street

21 shutting down the valves of the town water supply system, I saw women and

22 children being rounded up, gathered up, in Samac. Not only women and

23 children, in fact, but the elderly people too, the grandfathers and

24 grandmothers. They put all those people into trucks, everybody that

25 remained.

Page 5078

1 Q. What was the ethnic background of these people?

2 A. Muslims and Croats.

3 Q. I'd like to get -- I'd like you to paint as clear a picture for

4 the Chamber as you can of what actually was involved. The trucks, first

5 of all, were they open trucks or covered trucks?

6 A. They were covered, but the part of the canvass in the back was

7 pulled up. It was up.

8 Q. How were the people being selected and placed on the truck? Was

9 it people off the street? Or was the truck going to homes?

10 A. Into the houses. The police, the Serbian police, did this, and

11 if somebody was imprisoned, then his family was imprisoned in Zasavica too

12 or if somebody had managed to escape, the same thing would happen.

13 Q. The -- tell me this: Did the Serbian police pull up in the

14 truck and go into the house, as far as you could tell? Is that the way it

15 happened? Or were they accompanying the truck in their police cars? How

16 precisely was it carried out?

17 A. The Serbian police officers drove the trucks. One police

18 officer was a driver and he had two police officers as escorts. They had

19 a list and they went from house to house. They knew exactly whom to pick

20 up.

21 Q. Were the women and children and the elderly people upset?

22 A. As you can imagine, they were upset. They had to leave

23 everything behind. They didn't know where they were being taken. They

24 had to leave behind all the things that they had managed to gain in the

25 whole of their lives.

Page 5079

1 Q. How many trucks did you see doing this? Was it just the one

2 truck that you saw or was there more than one truck involved?

3 A. Since I only watched this as I passed by, I saw a truck in the

4 Iva Lole Ribara Street where I worked, and that truck was already full of

5 women and children.

6 Q. Were the men, the Serbian police, who were gathering the men and

7 the women -- sorry, the elderly, the women and the children armed? Were

8 they armed?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Were the Serbian police who were doing this locals?

11 A. Most of them were local Serbs from the municipality of Samac.

12 Q. Thank you. At the time that they were being gathered, did you

13 know where they were being taken or is that something that you

14 subsequently learned, that is that they were being taken to Zasavica?

15 A. They didn't know that. I didn't know that. I didn't know where

16 they were being taken. Later, we heard that there was a new camp set up

17 in Zasavica.

18 Q. And you also mentioned that new camps were set up in somewhere

19 else in Bosanski Samac for the Croats. Croat men, I believe?

20 A. In the high school. Yes.

21 Q. Right. And was that set up at about the same time as this

22 episode that you saw with the women being set up?

23 A. I think that the camp in Samac was established before the one in

24 Zasavica. The camp in Samac was set up when Mr. Simo Zaric spoke about

25 the reprisals against the local population if they failed to release Serbs

Page 5080

1 from the municipality of Odzak. And there was also the camp in the

2 elementary school in Crkvina and Zasavica is linked with the escape across

3 the Sava River. That was the reprisal that came about after that, because

4 they imprisoned all the family members of those who had escaped, as a sort

5 of reprisal.

6 Q. Yes. I think, Witness, now that you've mentioned this escape,

7 it's best if we deal with it now, and the full circumstances under which

8 it occurred and so on. Is there a place in Bosanski Samac called the

9 Spomen Dom

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. What exactly is it?

12 A. It is a memorial to the hero, Mitar Trifunovic, Uco. It was

13 built using the funds provided by the population of Samac to commemorate

14 the work and life and the deeds of this national hero whose name was

15 Mitar Trifunovic, Uco.

16 MR. DI FAZIO: Would Your Honours just give me a moment to

17 rearrange my papers? I hadn't anticipated dealing with this topic just at

18 the moment.

19 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.

20 MR. DI FAZIO: Okay.

21 Q. Did you ever attend any meetings there?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Approximately when did you go to a meeting there?

24 A. In June, in late June. An invitation was issued to all the men

25 of military age to report to the Spomen Dom, and I complied.

Page 5081

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Page 5082

1 Q. First of all, you say this, there was an invitation. How was it

2 formulated? How did you find out about it, perhaps, is a better question?

3 A. It happened for the first time, the notification was issued to

4 us for the first time in front of the local commune where we gathered to

5 go to work. That's where I read it.

6 Q. You say you read it. I take it that was some written form of --

7 written form of notification?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. All right. What was it, a poster, a signboard, a piece of paper

10 on the ground? Tell us what it was.

11 A. It was a poster, A4 size. And it was posted at the entrance to

12 the local commune. In fact, there was a window that belonged to the

13 nursing home, and it was posted there, and the notification was to the

14 effect that all men of military age were to report to the Spomen Dom.

15 Q. Was there anything on the paper or document that you saw that

16 indicated by whose authority this requirement was being issued?

17 A. I think that there was a seal there, a seal of the Crisis Staff

18 of the Samac municipality.

19 Q. Very well. And was there -- was the poster just on the window

20 of the nursing home or did you see the poster elsewhere around the town?

21 A. Also on some other -- elsewhere around the town, so that

22 everybody could see it.

23 Q. Did you attend this meeting?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Who spoke at the meeting?

Page 5083

1 A. I think it was -- in fact, I'm sure that Jovo Savic addressed

2 the meeting. He was an officer in the army, a reservist. There were also

3 Mladen Radovic, Vlado Sisic and Mr. Simo Zaric.

4 Q. About how many men attended the meeting?

5 A. Around 200 people. The hall in the Spomen Dom was full.

6 Q. Thank you. What were you informed of at the meeting?

7 A. If we took up guns and became the fighters for the Republika

8 Srpska, we would be relieved of our work duty, and also our families. So

9 whoever took up arms on behalf of Republika Srpska would be relieved of

10 the work duty.

11 Q. Was it made clear to you that whoever took up arms, their

12 families also would be released from work duty? Is that a correct

13 understanding of what you've just said?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. I don't think I've asked you what the ethnic background was of

16 the men who attended. Can you please let us know?

17 A. Muslims and Croats.

18 Q. Did Mr. Simo Zaric speak at this meeting?

19 A. No.

20 Q. Was it ever made clear to you what military unit you would be

21 taking up arms with?

22 A. There was only one unit in Samac, and that was the 4th

23 Detachment. So we couldn't belong to any other unit because there weren't

24 any other units.

25 Q. Apart from Mr. Simo Zaric, were there other representatives of

Page 5084

1 the 4th Detachment present at that meeting?

2 A. All the people that I enumerated, and Jovo Savic, Mladen

3 Radovic, Vlado Sisic, they were all members of the 4th Detachment.

4 Q. Did any of the men who attended the meeting accept the

5 invitation to join the 4th -- I'm sorry, I'll rephrase my question. Did

6 any of the men who attended the meeting take up arms?

7 A. Very few of them. Perhaps five or six of them, as far as I

8 could see.

9 Q. After this meeting, did any significant event take place?

10 A. As I said a little while ago, there was this great escape across

11 the Sava River, because everybody was afraid of taking up arms, that was

12 the only solution that remained.

13 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. di Fazio, I'm interested to know what the period

14 was when this meeting was held, the invitation to take up arms, and what

15 the witness understood taking up arms on behalf of Republika Srpska -- I

16 mean these were residents of Bosanski Samac. What did he understand that

17 to mean?

18 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, I think the witness has already given a time

19 frame in his answer so we've got a --

20 JUDGE MUMBA: Maybe I missed it.

21 MR. DI FAZIO: We have got a time on that, if you look up in the

22 transcript. I think he's mentioned June.

23 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. And it's 1.00. Maybe those questions can be

24 asked --

25 MR. DI FAZIO: I'll clarify those tomorrow, if I may.

Page 5085

1 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, 0930 hours.

2 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, thank you, Your Honour.

3 JUDGE MUMBA: We will rise and the proceedings will continue

4 tomorrow morning at 0930 hours.

5 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.00

6 p.m., to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 4th day of

7 December, 2001, at 9.30 a.m.

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