1 Wednesday, 24 July 2002
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.
6 JUDGE MUMBA: Please call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Case number
8 IT-95-9-T, the Prosecutor versus Blagoje Simic, Miroslav Tadic, and
9 Simo Zaric.
10 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. Mr. Lukic. Cross-examination is continuing.
11 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good
12 morning to all the participants in the proceedings.
13 WITNESS: EDIBA BOBIC [Resumed]
14 [Witness answered through interpreter]
15 Cross-examined by Mr. Lukic: [Continued]
16 Q. Good morning, Mrs. Bobic. Mrs. Bobic, I promised that I will be
17 asking you questions for ten minutes, and I would like to be able to go
18 through all my questions as fast as possible and to conclude your
20 We started discussing your exchange and the procedure of the
21 exchange of you and your family. On page 47, line 8 of the transcript,
22 you described how a courier came, five or six days before you went to be
23 exchanged, and you started for the exchange on the 24th of December,
24 1993. And he told you to get ready, that you would be exchanged.
25 Do you perhaps remember the name of the courier? Did you know
1 that man?
2 A. No. No, I couldn't tell you.
3 Q. You also said yesterday that on the list that the courier brought,
4 your husband's name was not there. Do you remember saying that?
5 A. Yes. But he said that he would be picked up at Batkovici.
6 Q. Was the courier perhaps Stevan Tesic [As interpreted]? Do you
7 know that man?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. First you said that you didn't know him.
10 A. No. Just a minute. I know that man, but I can't remember his
11 name, because it was a long time ago.
12 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Ms. Reidy.
13 MS. REIDY: Your Honour, the transcript is completely ambiguous,
14 Mr. Lukic's question at line 5 is: "Was the courier perhaps
15 Stevan Tesic? Do you know that man?" And Mrs. Bobic answers yes. That's
16 not clear whether the courier was Stevan Tesic or whether she knows
17 Stevan Tesic or anything. I left that to see if counsel would clarify,
18 but then, you know, counsel has tried to pick her up on that and
19 says: "First you said you didn't know him." And that's, as you can see
20 from the transcript, actually what she said, she didn't know the courier's
21 name. She said, yes, she knew Stevan Tesic and it's not clear --
22 JUDGE MUMBA: All right, Ms. Reidy. Perhaps the witness can be
23 allowed to explain the response.
24 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] First of all, we have to clarify,
25 because the transcript is not correct. This is the man by the name of
1 Stevan Tesic -- Stojan Tesic.
2 Q. Is that the man who came to tell you that you would be exchanged
3 and that Kemal would be picked up at Batkovici?
4 A. That man came and he said that Kemal would be brought in for the
5 exchange from Batkovici.
6 Q. And that man's name is Stojan Tesic?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. On that occasion, as you said, he showed you a list without
9 Kemal's name on it?
10 A. Yes. This man Stojan was not a courier. He was there on behalf
11 of the Red Cross, and he said that Kemal would be brought in. The courier
12 was another man. That was the man who brought the list. This is the man
13 whose name I cannot recall. It's been a really long time, and this is a
14 very difficult subject.
15 Q. Let me go back to your interview with the Prosecution in May this
16 year. In paragraph 74, you describe the arrival of the courier?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. The Prosecutor interpreted your words as follows:
19 "He said -- he brought a new list under number 50. There were
20 Ediba and Kemal, with his -- with their family, and number 51, there was
21 Amira Bobic and her household."
22 A. No.
23 Q. Let me ask you the question. Did you tell the Prosecutor that
24 under number 50 on that list that the courier had brought you --
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We have an objection from the
2 JUDGE MUMBA: Ms. Reidy.
3 MS. REIDY: Yes. It may be a minor issue, but in the statement
4 that I'm reading from, the paragraph does not refer to a new list, and
5 that's what Mr. Lukic has quoted at paragraph 16. It says that,
6 "It was after 6.00. I had finished forced labour for the day. He
7 brought a list, and at number 50 it had Ediba and Kemal and family."
8 So there was no new list, and in case there's any implication that
9 some --
10 JUDGE MUMBA: Which statement are you looking at, Ms. Reidy?
11 MS. REIDY: Well, the statement that Mr. Lukic said he was quoting
12 from, which is the draft statement taken in May of this year.
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Lukic?
14 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would kindly like that
15 this time not be counted as my ten minutes. I will now read from the
16 draft version of the statement.
17 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] That's page 12 in the English version,
19 paragraph 74. I'm reading.
20 [In English] "And 50 it had Ediba and Kemal and family and at 51
21 was Almira Bobic and her husband."
22 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. The statement you have is the English one.
23 Ms. Reidy?
24 MS. REIDY: I have absolutely no qualms with that at all. That
25 wasn't the point I was making. As I said, the paragraph does not refer to
1 a new list. It just refers to the courier bringing a list, and that's
2 what maybe -- can Mr. Lukic look at his draft statement, the paragraph
3 he's just quoted from, and say that the courier brought a list, not a new
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I don't understand what the Prosecutor
7 is saying. I'm quoting from paragraph 74, where it says that the courier
8 brought a new list. I'm reading from the statement that we had been given
9 by the Prosecution, but I don't want to dwell on that. My question to the
10 witness -- I can read again what is written in the document submitted to
11 by the Prosecution. I have [In English] a new list, and at 50 it has
12 Ediba and Kemal and family, and at 51 was Almira Bobic and her husband."
13 [Interpretation] It says "new list."
14 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Lukic. We'll accept that your version
15 says "a new list." I don't understand why there's differences, if it's a
16 copy of the same document.
17 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mrs. Bobic, did you tell the Prosecutor that you had seen a list
19 with the name of your husband on it? That's my question.
20 A. My husband's name was not on the list, and the name of my sister's
21 husband was also not on the list because he had died a few years before
23 Q. I'm asking you whether that's what you stated to the Prosecutor.
24 A. Yes, that's what I said, and that's how it was.
25 Q. You claim that you stated --
1 A. Can I just clarify the situation? Because I can see that you
2 cannot get the clear picture. After the meeting with Miro Brko, I had to
3 go to the Red Cross to be entered on the list. When I was entered on the
4 list, on it, under number 50, was Ediba Bobic and son Bedrudin, and it
5 said that Kemal would come in from Batkovici.
6 Under number 51, it says Almira, Nermina Bobic, Bedrija Arapovic
7 Bobic, and Selma Arapovic. These are the family members that were on the
8 list that was to be used during the exchange. But when I came, we did all
9 that, and we were supposed to be exchanged. We had to be exchanged in the
10 morning, at 7.00 a.m.
11 Q. You told us all about that.
12 A. I have to finish. Please let me finish.
13 Q. No. No, please just answer my question.
14 JUDGE MUMBA: [Previous translation continues]... Allow the
15 witness to complete what she is explaining, because the record won't be --
16 won't make sense.
17 And Ms. Bobic, please, when counsel asks you to stop, please do
18 listen to counsel, because you're supposed to be answering the questions
19 put to you by counsel.
20 Can we proceed?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the morning came. We came to
22 the place where we were supposed to board the buses. We waited a long
23 time for the buses. We got into the premises and the search lasted for a
24 long time. I asked why my husband was not there, and Mr. Miro told me
25 that we would meet at Dragalic. And when they came to Dragalic, we didn't
1 meet him there either. When we crossed the border to Croatia, he wasn't
2 there either. And from then on, I had to initiate proceedings to verify
3 why Mr. Miro did not carry out what he had promised, because a promise is
4 one thing and a lie is another thing.
5 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Let me ask you: What kind of proceedings did you have to
8 A. Well I gave a statement, I had to say that Mr. Miro did not want
9 to exchange my husband.
10 Q. Was that the reason why you gave the statement?
11 A. Well, had he made sure that my husband was exchanged, I would
12 never have said that I had given him the money. But he did not do his job
13 conscientiously, and that's why I did it.
14 Q. Mrs. Bobic, you said that Stojan Tesic came to your apartment and
15 told you that your husband would be brought for the exchange the same day
16 when you were exchanged?
17 A. Yes. Somebody sent him there. I don't know who it was.
18 Q. Please tell me: Yesterday you said that Tadic searched
19 everybody's bags?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. In the pensioners' hall, before going to be exchanged?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You said that when you boarded the buses, you saw that the bus
24 with the people from Zasavica had already come in?
25 A. That was another bus.
1 Q. And it arrived there in front of the pensioners' hall?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Mrs. Bobic, do you know Hajrija Drljacic?
4 A. Well, she was a neighbour of mine, so I do know her. At the time
5 she was a neighbour of mine. She lived close by to the hamburger stand
6 where I worked.
7 Q. Do you know Teufik, her brother?
8 A. I know him from Bosanski Samac.
9 Q. Do you remember that they were exchanged on the same day as you
10 were, together with the 87 people?
11 A. Yes, it's possible that we left together.
12 Q. You told the Prosecutor that you remember very well that 87 of you
13 were exchanged, and now I'm asking you, since you are so sure about this
14 number: Do you remember having seen Hajrija Drljacic and her brother with
16 A. Let me tell you: When we left from the station in front of the
17 pensioners' hall -- please believe me that when we came to the graveyard
18 and when I turned my head in that direction, and when I saw my child's
19 grave, there was nothing I could see any more, and any time I look at
20 that, I cannot get a clear picture of the event, because these are the
21 events that cannot be expressed. This is something that one cannot
22 explain, and you cannot explain how it came about that one was expelled
23 from one's home and that one is unable to go back and live in one's
25 JUDGE MUMBA: We are not going into that. Please stick to the
1 questions that counsel is asking you. We are all aware that you are very
2 upset by recalling all of these events and you suffered a tragedy in the
3 process of what we are trying to ask of you. But we are conducting a
4 criminal trial, and we need the evidence to be on record.
5 If you cannot remember the events clearly as to who was there, who
6 was exchanged with you, you simply say that. We appreciate that it's a
7 long time ago. We appreciate the circumstances of your family, but please
8 do give answers to counsel. If you cannot remember, you say so.
9 Can we proceed? Very well, Mr. Lukic.
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I will move on to another topic. I've
11 concluded the topic of the exchange.
12 Q. Mrs. Bobic, I will be asking you a few questions about what you
13 testified yesterday about Mr. Cvijetin Stjepanovic [As interpreted].
14 A. Stevanovic.
15 Q. Stevanovic.
16 You described yesterday, on page 40, how you visited your husband,
17 together with Cvijetin, and that he asked Kemal to sign a document,
18 leaving all his property to him. Do you remember saying that?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Did you see, when your husband signed this document for
21 Mr. Stevanovic?
22 A. I didn't see that, but I saw it when we met in Orasje, because my
23 husband had brought this document with me, and he will show it to you when
24 he comes here to testify.
25 Q. So he didn't sign this document when you were there with Cvijetin?
1 A. I was there, but I was removed from the office, from the room. It
2 wasn't an office, in fact. It wasn't a shed. I can't tell you what that
3 place was. It was like a receptionist's room at the entrance gate where
4 the ramp was. A woman from Bijeljina was there. She was present, because
5 she handed the documents to him for his signature. She will tell you what
6 was going on at that time, on that occasion. I told you all that I did
7 before this document was signed.
8 Q. Just answer me briefly: Were you in a position to speak to your
9 husband for 45 minutes at that time? That's what you stated.
10 A. Yes. We had it in writing that we were allowed to remain there
11 for 45 minutes, and in the course of the 45 minutes, Cvijetin had a woman
12 with him. I didn't know who she was, but she was a lawyer, in fact, and
13 she had to speak to Kemal. And I had to leave the room and stay with the
14 receptionist while they did that.
15 They signed it, and that was when my husband and I had the
16 opportunity to say hello. I'm telling you the truth, because this is
17 something that I went through.
18 Q. So you just said hello and then you said goodbye?
19 A. No. We spoke, but there were two police officers who had brought
20 Kemal to this receptionist's area, and he didn't know their names, but you
21 will find that out from him.
22 Q. In the very same statement, the Prosecutor stated that, in
23 paragraph 55, you said that:
24 "First Cvijetin talked to Kemal to get to know him. He didn't
25 know him. I then spoke with Kemal for 45 minutes."
1 Did you state that to the Prosecution or not? Yes or no.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction, it's paragraph 54.
3 A. Well, there must be a mistake in interpretation. We didn't have
4 that long to talk. Cvijetin came there to actually get to know him,
5 because he had to conduct the appropriate proceedings in Samac,
6 appropriate paperwork to get our property.
7 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. So it wasn't like this, as this is described here?
9 A. Well, it's possible that the interpretation was not right. People
10 sometimes do not interpret my words correctly. I speak Bosnian. I do
11 speak some English and some Croatian. So that sometimes the names are not
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I have a correction for the
14 transcript. Page 10, line 11 -- page 10, line 19. I just wanted to
15 correct that it says: "And then I spoke with Kemal."
16 Q. In your statement in 1995, you had never mentioned the name of
17 Cvijetin Stevanovic; is that correct?
18 A. Could you please repeat your question? I didn't understand you.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I will have to make a correction. I
20 will read for the transcript what is entered in paragraph 54 of the
21 statement, dated 18th of May this year:
22 "I then spoke with Kemal for 45 minutes."
23 And now I will ask my next question.
24 Q. Did you mention Cvijetin in your interview with the Prosecution in
25 1995? Yes or no.
1 A. No. I didn't know that until my husband brought in the document.
2 I didn't know that this was the way that it had been done.
3 Q. You probably know that your husband spoke with the Prosecutors in
5 A. Yes, possibly. I don't know.
6 Q. Your husband told you about what he spoke about with the
7 Prosecution, and he said that he didn't mention Cvijetin Stevanovic?
8 A. Well, let me tell you: We didn't have the document with which we
9 started this process. We did it in Brcko, and the process was completed.
10 Q. Okay. We'll learn that from your husband.
11 Do you know that this paper that your husband signed is, in fact,
12 the power of attorney authorising Cvijetin Stevanovic that he is entitled
13 to use your property but that he cannot sell it without the express
14 approval of your husband, and that if he should sell it, he should give
15 the money to your husband? Do you know that? Yes or no.
16 A. It says "until revoked." That means that the moment we show up,
17 that it no longer is valid. I'm sure that this was done by the lady
18 lawyer, that she did it right.
19 Q. But you confirm that you remained in your apartment until the time
20 when you were exchanged?
21 A. Yes. It was just a very brief time while he was taking out and
22 carrying away all the stuff.
23 Q. Am I right, Mrs. Bobic, when I say that you and your husband
24 decided to mention Cvijetin before this Trial Chamber only in 2002 because
25 that was the time that you had a lawsuit against him before the local
2 A. No. Do you know why I mentioned that in this year? Because
3 when -- through IPTF and through the authorities, I sought to prove with
4 this document that we had in our hands, we had to notify IPTF to tell them
5 what Cvijetin had done before we had left Bosanski Samac. The IPTF took
6 this paper and they conducted their proceedings, and they said that Kemal
7 or I had to come to Pelagicevo, to go to Cvijetin's house, to be able to
8 talk to him, and so that Cvijetin would then return our property to us.
9 However, in that period when I went to Pelagicevo, I'm sure that
10 he had very, very good friends that he worked with. Those were the
11 paramilitaries. At the time when I came there, the situation was not
12 really clear. It was not really easy to get into the Republika Srpska.
13 You know that very well, especially in Pelagicevo and Loncari. At that
14 time, I entered Pelagicevo once. Little Miso, from Bosanski Samac, worked
15 there and he received me quite well.
16 Q. Let us not go into that.
17 A. No. Please let me finish my thoughts. Let me express my
18 thoughts. Everything went fine then, and after the third -- second or
19 third --
20 JUDGE MUMBA: [Previous translation continues] ... saying. If
21 there is need for any explanation, the Prosecution will ask you to explain
22 when their turn comes to re-examine you.
23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. You will be able to answer all the questions that the Prosecution
25 will ask you. Now please answer my questions. I hope you understand what
1 the Trial Chamber has told you.
2 Did you, as early as in 1993, initiate proceedings for the return
3 of your property?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 Do you know that your husband and your sister, who are co-owners
7 of your property, did, as early as July 1993, give some of your real
8 estate to Gordana Pavlovic, the girlfriend of your late son? Do you know
10 A. No.
11 Q. So they never gave anything to Gordana Pavlovic as a gift?
12 A. No.
13 Q. I have just a few questions, Your Honours, but I would now like to
14 go into private session, because I will be asking questions about some
15 witnesses who are protected.
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Very well. We'll go into private session.
17 [Private session]
12 Page 11353 – redacted – private session
12 Page 11354 – redacted – private session
4 [Open session]
5 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session now. Thank you.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Mrs. Bobic, just one more question: You described how you were in
8 a bus when you were exchanged. Is it true that from the pensioners' hall,
9 the bus passed Mebos on its way to Crkvina, did not pass the Muslim
11 A. It did pass the Muslim graveyard. That was the most difficult
12 moment for me, having to leave the graves behind me. This was my hearth,
13 the place where I lived. I can --
14 JUDGE MUMBA: Calm down.
15 Mr. Lukic, was that necessary, the question that it passed
16 wherever it passed?
17 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think that these are
18 some facts that are very important, what this witness said about my
19 client, these facts are very important and very serious, and during my
20 cross-examination I did not ask a single question regarding this witness's
21 son. However, I have facts and I have information, and if the witness
22 touched upon that, then I think it's very important to bring out the claim
23 of my client, which is that the bus never passed by the graveyard.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It did. It did pass.
25 JUDGE MUMBA: Very well, Mr. Lukic. Are you through?
1 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. I've finished with my
3 JUDGE MUMBA: I have to check with the registry at one stage where
4 we have to open the record. Because, as Mr. Lukic said, he didn't require
5 private session. So we have to check that.
6 Ms. Reidy?
7 MS. REIDY: Your Honour, could I just ask for a five-minute
8 recess? I think it will make the next proceedings go more quickly.
9 JUDGE MUMBA: All right. We'll have a recess to allow the witness
10 to calm down.
11 --- Break taken at 9.36 a.m.
12 --- On resuming at 9.47 a.m.
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Before we proceed, Ms. Reidy, I just want to correct
14 the record. The record should be open as from page 14, line 11.
16 MS. REIDY: Thank you, Your Honours.
17 Re-examined by Ms. Reidy:
18 Q. Mrs. Bobic, before we start, just because I'm going to ask you a
19 few questions about matters put to you by Defence counsel, I'd like you
20 just to be shown the statement that Defence counsel has quoted you from.
21 It's your statement from the 14th of February, 1995. And I'm going to
22 show you the English version of the copy, just because that's the one upon
23 which your signature appears.
24 MS. REIDY: So can I just ask if the usher could show that
25 document to the witness?
1 JUDGE MUMBA: Ms. Reidy, sorry to interrupt you. I've been
2 advised by the registry assistant that the correct -- the correction
3 should be -- the record should be open from page 15, line 8, at 0930
4 hours. Because we went along with private session, but it should be open
5 as at that time, page 15, line 8.
6 MS. REIDY: Thank you.
7 Q. Mrs. Bobic, the only thing I want you to do is to look at that
8 document and see if that's your signature at the bottom of that document
9 and on the subsequent pages.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Mrs. Bobic, is the document you have in front of you - it's in the
12 English language; that's right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And am I correct that in fact what it amounts to is actually three
15 pages of -- three and a little bit pages of information? Well, let me --
16 in total, the document is six pages; is that correct?
17 A. Six.
18 Q. And the first and the last page are kind of forms that just give
19 standard information?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And the middle there's about three and a half pages of information
22 you provided to investigators in 1995; is that right?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 Perhaps you can give it back to the usher. It's in English, so
1 you won't be able to read it, but if the Defence counsel want to check
2 it's the same document they have, they can.
3 So that's your statement in 1995. Now, Defence counsel have also
4 asked you questions about a statement that was recorded this year, indeed
5 by myself, and you had a look at that draft statement when you came here,
6 and it's about 16 pages long; is that correct? It's a much longer
7 statement than the one you gave in 1995.
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 So there were a lot of questions asked in 2002 that perhaps the
11 investigator in 1995 didn't put to you; is that correct?
12 A. That's correct.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 MS. REIDY: I'm sorry, Your Honour. Can you give me one second?
15 I seem to have misplaced --
16 Q. Now, Mrs. Bobic, I'd like to first take you to the matter of being
17 taken from your house to Mr. Nogic's, and you were asked questions by two
18 Defence counsels on this matter, both by Defence counsel for Blagoje Simic
19 and Defence counsel for Mr. Tadic.
20 I would like to read you -- you were read different parts of your
21 statement by Defence counsel for Mr. Blagoje Simic, and I'd just like to
22 put to you some of the other things you said about -- that he didn't put
23 to you. Now, this is your statement from 2002. I'm afraid I can't tell
24 you exactly the direct paragraph, because I think we've established there
25 was a change in paragraph numbers. But the statement records you as
2 "Two days after they had searched for weapons, a Serb policeman
3 came to our house and told us we could not stay and we should go to a
5 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel please slow down.
6 MS. REIDY: Sorry.
7 Q. "Two days after they had searched for weapons, a Serb policeman
8 came to our house and told us that we could not stay and we should go to a
10 I think that was read to you by Defence counsel for
11 Mr. Blagoje Simic. It goes on to say:
12 "I did not recognise the Serb policeman, but he was accompanied by
13 Vlajko Tadic, Miro's brother. He introduced himself as a police officer.
14 We were not told why we had to leave. We were just told we had to go. We
15 couldn't refuse. We were Muslim. He was armed. We had no choice. We
16 did not want to leave. I had to. We took nothing with us. All of us -
17 myself, my husband, Bedrudin, my sister, and her three children - went.
18 They escorted us to the house. We could not go by ourselves. I was very
19 frightened and nervous, being kicked out of my house. We were not told
20 anything about how long we would be away, what would happen, or if we
21 would ever be allowed to return."
22 Do you recall saying that earlier this year? And is it an
23 accurate description of the circumstances in which you were removed from
24 your house to Idriz Nogic's?
25 A. Yes, it is.
1 Q. Idriz Nogic's house, I think you've also said in the statement, is
2 located very close to your house; is that correct?
3 A. Yes. There was just a fence between us.
4 Q. So in other words, you weren't moved somewhere else in the city to
5 a shelter; you were simply gathered in a location with other non-Serbs,
6 close to your own house. Is that right?
7 A. Yes, that's correct.
8 Q. Defence counsel said to you that shelters were marked. Was
9 your -- was this basement or hen house, I think you've described it as,
10 marked as a shelter?
11 A. No.
12 Q. On the street that you used to live on in Bosanski Samac, were
13 there -- I withdraw that. Let me rephrase it.
14 Between your house on your street and the Spomen Dom, were there
15 also places or apartments occupied by Serb families?
16 A. There weren't many, but there were, yes.
17 Q. And I think you've testified, both in examination-in-chief and
18 cross, that all the families were -- between those locations were gathered
19 up. Were any of the Serb families brought down to stay with you in
20 Idriz Nogic's basement or hen house?
21 A. No. There was just Gordana Nogic there, because she was the wife
22 of Mesud Nogic, and she was in the shelter there with us. She spent two
23 days there and then she left.
24 Q. So it was just Muslims and Croats in an unmarked basement, in
25 fact, very close to where your house was?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. I want to also ask you a second question. It's just to clarify
3 the record. And again, it came in the questions posed to you by Defence
4 counsel for Blagoje Simic.
5 You said that your husband used to play chess with Vojin Simic.
6 Is that correct?
7 A. Let me tell you: Mr. Vojin Simic, Kosta, Cvijan, Sarkan, those
8 are the people who played chess with my husband, as he did. The team that
9 played chess for Bosanski Samac is well known.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 So -- and Vojin Simic is the father of Milan Simic; is that
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And when you went to the municipal building in 1993, it was
15 Blagoje Simic you saw, not Milan Simic; is that correct?
16 A. Yes. Of Blagoje Simic. I didn't see Milan, because he was in the
17 wheelchair and he was absent. He was not in Samac.
18 Q. And the person you met is the Blagoje Simic that you identified to
19 the Chamber yesterday morning. Is that the same person that you say that
20 you met?
21 A. Yes. Yes. He's sitting here. Yes.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 Counsel for Blagoje Simic also then asked you questions about your
24 statement relating to things you had said about having electricity and
25 water, and you said that you had had electricity and water and that later
1 that was cut off and you didn't have any of it. Mr. -- counsel did not
2 proceed then to ask you about the telephones. I'm going to quote to you
3 from your statement from May 2002 that comes after you spoke about the
4 electricity. You say:
5 "There was no electricity, and we had no telephone either. As far
6 as we knew, it was only non-Serbs who had their phones turned off. We
7 heard that the Serbs could still make telephone calls. It was only
8 non-Serb houses where the phone was turned off."
9 Is that an accurate recollection of the situation regarding the
10 telephone facilities in Bosanski Samac after the 17th of April, 1992?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And to your recollection, there were Serb neighbours you knew who
13 had telephone communication, but the non-Serbs did not have telephone
15 I'm sorry, Mrs. Bobic. Did you answer the question?
16 A. Excuse me for just a second.
17 Q. Would you like -- did you --
18 A. Could you please repeat the question?
19 Q. Certainly.
20 I want to know: Is it your recollection that in Bosanski Samac,
21 after the 17th of April, 1992, that you and non-Serbs had no telephone
22 connections but that, in fact, persons of Serb ethnicity did have
23 telephone communication?
24 A. Everybody else had telephone communication, but Muslims and Croats
25 did not.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 The next topic relates to the issue of humanitarian aid, and again
3 you were asked questions about that by two Defence counsel, one for
4 Blagoje Simic and the other for Mr. Tadic. To Mr. -- to Defence counsel
5 for Blagoje Simic, you explained that,
6 "Everyone had humanitarian aid except for us. It didn't come our
7 way because we were not called when the humanitarian aid was distributed.
8 We knew that it had arrived, because our people were unloading it, but
9 nobody called us when they were distributing that food."
10 And that's at page 61 of yesterday's transcript. What I want to
11 ask is: When you say "our people were unloading it," do you mean that
12 non-Serbs with forced labour assignments were required to unload
13 humanitarian aid as it arrived in Bosanski Samac? Is that what you mean
14 by "our people"?
15 A. Yes. Yes. I was referring to Muslims and Croats who performed
16 forced labour.
17 Q. And in your recollection, you received humanitarian aid just once
18 in the first four days when you got some milk and bread; is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And I think you testified once that when you were in the PIK
21 factory, you were given some flour by a gentleman. Is that right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. So -- and that is the full extent to which you received any form
24 of official humanitarian aid?
25 I'm sorry. Could you repeat your answer. I don't think it was
1 picked up.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And you -- again just ask you: When you say that you knew that it
4 was coming in because people were unloading it, can you give us any idea,
5 if you know - and if you don't, just say it - how often you got the
6 impression or you thought from the information you had about people
7 unloading aid, how often you think that humanitarian arrived --
8 humanitarian aid arrived in Bosanski Samac?
9 A. Well, it was frequent, but I never received any of it, so I can't
10 tell you how frequently it arrived in Bosanski Samac. The Muslims never
11 got any part of it.
12 Q. Thank you.
13 Again, I want to clear it for the record: Mr. Tadic -- sorry,
14 Defence counsel for Mr. Tadic asked you about a paragraph in your
15 statement, where you explain how people were rounded up and taken to
16 Zasavica and where you said that you also were rounded up in the truck but
17 you had got off the truck. In the draft statement I have, it says that
18 you got off the truck whilst they were not looking.
19 Is that what happened? Was it that they -- and I think you
20 perhaps went on to explain, but the people guarding you had not -- didn't
21 see you get off the truck and you went back in your house and hid?
22 A. This is how it was: People, civilians living in my street, were
23 loaded on the truck, and then when these men went into another yard that
24 was a bit away, I got off the truck and I hid in the house. I never got
25 back on the truck. I wanted to wait for my son to come back home from his
1 work obligation, because otherwise he would have been surprised to come
2 home and not find me there.
3 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Lukic?
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I don't have an objection to this
5 question or answer. All I want to do is to clarify that my question
6 pertained to paragraph 44 of the draft version, which said:
7 "I got off the truck. I came back home. I wanted to wait for my
8 son to come back home from the work obligation."
9 In the statement that I have, in the version that I have, it
10 doesn't say anywhere that the people who were rounding up people went into
11 another yard.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Sir, they went to Zasavica. You
13 omitted the word that should have been in there.
14 JUDGE MUMBA: Mrs. Bobic, you're not supposed to answer anything.
15 Counsel is addressing the Trial Chamber. So please do not interrupt
17 MS. REIDY: I can confirm that it doesn't contain in the statement
18 about the people going into a yard. It just contains the words "while
19 they weren't looking."
20 JUDGE MUMBA: What did you say? What does the statement contain?
21 MS. REIDY: The statement contains the phrase: "Whilst they were
22 collecting other people from the street and they were not looking, I got
23 off the truck."
24 And I don't think that part of it was in -- was on the record
25 yesterday. So -- but I fully accept Mr. Lukic is right. It doesn't say
1 anything about them going into yards.
2 JUDGE MUMBA: All right. Then you can proceed.
3 MS. REIDY: And Defence counsel also asked you to confirm that you
4 remained in Bosanski Samac and not Zasavica after that, but you didn't
5 have -- your son Bedrudin had not swum across the Sava River in August of
6 1992, had he?
7 A. No.
8 Q. But you still performed work duty with women from Zasavica from
9 August 1992 onwards?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Finally, I just want to touch briefly on the topic that was
12 recently raised about your property and the information you provided the
13 Chamber that a person Cvijetin Stevanovic, having taken away your
14 property. You explained to the Trial Chamber yesterday how they came and
15 made you and your son load up your property onto a military vehicle. And
16 it was put to you that you never mentioned the actual name of
17 Cvijetin Stevanovic in your 1995 statement. In your 1995 statement, the
18 one that you signed, there's a paragraph as follows:
19 "Before my exchange, soldiers from the Banja Luka Corps came and
20 took all my things and my furniture from my house. They arrived in a
21 military truck. My son and I had to help load it. One of the them who
22 came told us he was from the Banja Luka Corps. I had to sign a paper
23 saying that I had authorised them to take my furniture and possessions. I
24 did not notice who had issued this document."
25 So although your statement from 1995 is much briefer, you did tell
1 officers from the OTP about people coming and taking away your furniture
2 and your possessions?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And you remember --
5 A. I didn't know his name.
6 MS. REIDY: I'd like to show the witness a document that could
7 perhaps be marked for identification, because I think the next witness
8 will be able to provide more information upon it. But Defence counsel
9 seemed to have made an issue with it with this witness.
10 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. What is the document?
11 MS. REIDY: The document is a power of attorney for Cvijetin
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Was it signed by this witness?
14 MS. REIDY: No, Your Honour. It's signed by her husband. That's
15 why I only want it for ID. I wasn't going to introduce it, but the
16 witness -- the Defence counsel have raised all these questions about her
17 not mentioning his name and issues like that. I simply want to ask her if
18 she recognizes the document, have it marked for ID, and explain where she
19 was later able to provide the name of the exact name of the man who came
20 to take away her property. And I would only have it marked for ID. I
21 think it makes more sense for the next witness, who is the signatory of
22 the document, to actually explain the full circumstances to the Chamber.
23 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. Can we have it marked for identification only?
24 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honours. It will be P135 ter ID and
25 P135 ID. Thank you.
1 MS. REIDY: Thank you.
2 Q. I don't know if you can read that document. Can you have a look
3 at that document in front of you, Mrs. Bobic, and just tell me if you
4 recognise it. Have you seen that document before?
5 A. Certainly. I saw this document when my husband was exchanged in
6 Orasje, but that was already in 1994 or 1995.
7 Q. But this document says that -- well, it's a power of attorney and
8 it's got the name at the top, Cvijetin Stevanovic. Is that right?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And is it from this document that you were able to put together
11 the pieces of what had happened when you were taken to Batkovici to see
12 Kemal and when they then later came on a military truck and took away all
13 your possessions?
14 A. No.
15 Q. When you say "no" --
16 A. I know everything, and I can confirm everything, which is what I'm
17 doing. This is why I came here.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 A. But it is better for my husband to do that --
20 Q. Absolutely.
21 A. -- when he comes.
22 Q. That's fine.
23 Perhaps you could just hand the document back, Mrs. Bobic.
24 A. I repeated this already many times.
25 Q. I have just one or two more questions. Defence counsel for
1 Mr. Tadic this morning asked you about proceedings for your property, and
2 he talked about the date July 1993. In July 1993, your husband, Kemal,
3 was in Batkovici; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. In July 1993, your sister, Amira was imprisoned in Zasavica; is
6 that right?
7 A. Yes, that's right.
8 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Lukic?
9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Just to avoid any confusion: I asked
10 two questions pertaining to 1993. One of them was whether in July of 1993
11 a part of real estate was gifted away to Gordana Pavlovic; and the second
12 question was whether in 1993 this witness initiated proceedings for
13 restitution of property. But I didn't mention the month, because I didn't
14 know which month it was. And when the Prosecutor is asking questions
15 about 1993, I don't know to which of these two items these questions
16 pertained, whether the first one or the second one, because on the second
17 occasion I didn't mention the month, just the year of 1993.
18 MS. REIDY: I'm sorry, Your Honour. Can I just check the
20 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
21 MS. REIDY: Okay. Your Honour, I think that there was a question
22 about: Did you know that your husband and your sister initiated
23 proceedings in July 1993? But I'm happy just to talk about 1993 in
24 general, then, because it, in fact, makes no difference.
25 Q. In 1993, Kemal was in Batkovici, is that correct, throughout 1993?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And throughout 1993 until --
3 A. In 1994 as well.
4 Q. And throughout 1993 until the very end of 1993, your sister,
5 Amira, was in Zasavica; is that correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 Finally, Mrs. Bobic, one last thing: In -- there was an incident
9 brought up, but I don't want to dwell on it, but there was an incident in
10 1997 [sic] where your brother-in-law was injured. Was that a kitchen
11 accident where you were both preparing cevapi and pita bread in the
12 kitchen of your establishment?
13 A. Yes. This is how it happened: He was a large man. Shall I
15 Q. No, Mrs. Bobic. Don't worry. It's not important. I just want to
16 clarify that that was the circumstances. You were both cooking in the
17 kitchen and this accident occurred.
18 A. It was just an accident.
19 Q. Yes. And your husband's brother continued to live with you or
20 live near you and work with you in the restaurant after this accident?
21 A. Yes. Yes.
22 Q. Thank you very much.
23 MS. REIDY: That's the last of my questions.
24 JUDGE MUMBA: Very well.
25 MS. REIDY: And Your Honour --
1 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
2 MS. REIDY: I'm sorry. I just see page 31, paragraph 14, just for
3 the record, it was an incident in 1987, not 1997, and I don't know if the
4 transcript or my own distinction, but --
5 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. It should be corrected to 1987.
6 MS. REIDY: That's correct. Thank you.
7 JUDGE MUMBA: Thank you, Mrs. Bobic, for giving evidence to the
8 Tribunal. You are now free to leave the courtroom.
9 [The witness withdrew]
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honours, according to our practice so far,
12 maybe the defendants should change places.
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. I was being reminded by Judge Williams here,
14 and I was wondering, in view of the evidence of the previous witness. So
15 how do you want them to sit?
16 MR. LAZAREVIC: Just in a different way than they are sitting
17 now. I mean, it's not important.
18 JUDGE MUMBA: All right. The accused persons can exchange seats.
19 MR. PANTELIC: Your Honours, maybe in order to improve this method
20 of identification, maybe one of the Defence counsel can sit in front, just
21 to see -- I mean to have -- I mean, too simple, Your Honour, to have three
22 persons here. I mean --
23 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Pantelic, most of the evidence shows that most
24 of the Prosecution witnesses lived in Bosanski Samac, they know, and there
25 is very little value in courtroom identification. So I don't think it's
1 necessary to go to any unreasonable lengths.
2 MR. PANTELIC: I agree.
3 [The witness entered court]
4 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. Can the witness make the solemn declaration.
5 WITNESS: KEMAL BOBIC
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I solemnly declare
8 that I will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
9 JUDGE MUMBA: Thank you. Please sit down.
10 Yes, Mr. Di Fazio.
11 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you, Your Honour
12 Examined by Mr. Di Fazio:
13 Q. Mr. Bobic, in the five minutes that we've got before the morning
14 break, I'll just go through some introductory matters. You were born in
15 Bosanski Samac in 1940, I believe?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And you went to school there, both primary school, secondary
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. When you're answering the questions, speak up a bit, because they
21 have to be recorded so everyone can hear, and they have to be heard so
22 that they can be interpreted. So you can -- feel free to move the chair
23 in and relax, but keep your voice up so that everything can be recorded.
24 Because you're going to be sitting there for a while, so just get used to
1 You married, I think, in 1969, the previous witness, Ediba Bobic.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Indeed, you and your brother married Ediba and her sister?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Did you train as a chef in Brcko and as a baker in Orasje?
6 A. Yes, but in fact I went to vocational, secondary school, and there
7 I trained as a baker. And then in Orasje, I trained as a chef, and in
8 Brcko as a butcher. So I have three trades.
9 Q. Thank you. Are you a Muslim by ethnicity?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. You had, in early 1992, two children, I believe, two sons, one of
12 whom was unfortunately killed in February of that year; is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. I'd just like to get a brief overview of your occupation and
15 businesses in Bosanski Samac. Did you have a general store there called
16 Ideal, or Ideal?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And was that held in the name of your niece, Nermina?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. In addition, did you have a pharmacy or natural health and herb
21 shop which was --
22 A. Yes. Yes. A herbal pharmacy, pharmacy selling herbal remedies.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 And was that in the name of one of your sons, Enver?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. In addition, did you own a video rental shop?
2 A. Yes. Yes, I did.
3 Q. And finally, did you also own a cafe called Sedrvan?
4 A. Yes. Unfortunately, it was destroyed.
5 Q. So essentially, in April of 1992, you were involved in four
6 businesses, the ones that I've mentioned to you?
7 A. Yes.
8 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, it's 10.29. I'm going to
9 move on to his political background. Would you like to have the break
11 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. I think we can take our break now and continue
12 the proceedings at 1100 hours.
13 --- Recess taken at 10.29 a.m.
14 --- On resuming at 11.01 a.m.
15 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. The Prosecution continues
17 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
18 Q. In 1991, did you join the SDA?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And did you achieve any rank in the structure of the party?
21 A. Yes. I was on the board.
22 Q. Is that the executive board of the party?
23 A. Yes, that's correct.
24 Q. Can you recall approximately when you were appointed to the
25 executive board?
1 A. When the parties were formed, I can't recall the exact date, but
2 it was in 1991.
3 Q. Mr. Bobic, I notice you have a document in front of you, and I
4 think the Defence counsel and the Court should know what it is. Is that
5 your statement that you have there, by any chance, in B/C/S?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Could you just close it and put it away for the time being, okay?
8 If we need to refer to it, I'll certainly ask you about it.
9 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Pantelic.
10 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, Your Honour. Could we just know -- because
11 there are at least two statements, of which statement you are speaking
12 now, so that we can follow?
13 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. I believe it was the statement prepared in
14 anticipation of the 92 bis -- being used as a 92 bis document. It
15 remains, however, unsigned and not officially adopted. But that's the
16 document that the witness would have had in front of him, I believe.
17 Thank you.
18 MR. PANTELIC: Thank you.
19 MR. DI FAZIO:
20 Q. The only reason I told you that, Mr. Bobic, is that we prefer to
21 hear your statement orally rather than by reference to that document.
22 That's all.
23 And do you continue to retain membership of the SDA?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Did your sons, in particular, your son Enver, hold a position in
1 any affiliated body to the SDA?
2 A. Yes. My son was the president of the MOS, M-O-S. That's the
3 Muslim Youth Party, which was a part of the SDA.
4 Q. And did he hold that position in the period of time preceding
5 April of 1992?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 Did you hold your position on the executive board of the SDA in
9 the period of time preceding April of 1992?
10 A. Yes, I did.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 Did you ever run for any other office in the SDA?
13 A. No, never.
14 Q. On the 14th of February, 1992, your son was killed in Bosanski
15 Samac, and following that tragic event, did you essentially retire from
16 public life and did you just devote yourself to your work and your family?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And were you essentially going about life in that way as at the
19 16th and 17th of April, 1992?
20 A. Yes.
21 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Di Fazio, I would like some explanation as to
22 what "retiring" means. Did he resign from the position in the political
24 MR. DI FAZIO: Very well. I'll clarify that. I'm sorry. It does
25 leave that up in the air.
1 Q. The Chamber wants to know exactly what you mean by -- or perhaps
2 what I meant by your retiring from public life. Is it the case that you
3 still continued in -- with membership of the SDA following the event in
4 February of 1992 but that you didn't participate in functions, rallies,
5 activities of the SDA?
6 A. Yes. I continued being a member of the SDA, and indeed I'm still
7 a member of the party. I do not hold any office. I do not have any
8 function in the political life. But that's my party, a Muslim party, and
9 I have no other party.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 MR. DI FAZIO: Does that clarify it for Your Honour?
12 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
13 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
14 Can the witness be shown D24/2 ter? The document is under seal, I
15 believe. Sorry. Before it is shown to the witness, may I ask -- inquire
16 from the registry whether that document is simply marked for
17 identification at that stage? I thought it was a full exhibit, but I may
18 be wrong. D24/2. Perhaps I'll retract that, then.
19 May the witness be shown D25/4. Can I just see the document
20 before it's presented? Yes. I do apologise to the Chamber and to the
21 registry. We need the B/C/S version of the document to be shown to the
22 witness. That's the English. I should have mentioned it was D25/4 ter.
23 Thank you.
24 Q. Witness, I'd just like you to have a look at the document that you
25 have before you. I don't want you to study it in detail. I think if you
1 go to three pages from the back, three, yes, three pages from the back,
2 you will find a page at the top of which are the words "supplies section."
3 Would you please find that. Three pages from the back.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 MR. DI FAZIO: If the defendants -- if the Defence counsel want it
7 on the ELMO, I'll put it on the ELMO. Thank you. Perhaps it could be
8 placed on the ELMO.
9 Q. Just a few questions on this document, please. Number 2 is Bobic;
10 that's your surname. Look at the number next to it, 62-642. Was that
11 your home telephone number in April of 1992?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. It says "supplies section." The document speaks for itself. You
14 can see who the commander is, who is in reserve. Presumably there are
15 telephone numbers there and the names of other men who were presumably
16 members of this body.
17 Are you aware of the existence of anything called the supplies
18 section within the SDA?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Were you aware of ever having been placed on this list?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Were you ever even consulted about being placed on -- as a member
23 of something called a supplies section?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 MR. DI FAZIO: I'm done with the document. Thank you.
2 Q. I'd like to ask you some questions about some names. Do you know
3 Simo Zaric?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. How long would you say that you have known him?
6 A. I've known him for maybe 30 years.
7 Q. And do you know Miroslav Tadic?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And how long have you known him?
10 A. The same.
11 Q. Do you know Blagoje Simic?
12 A. Yes, Dr. Blagoje Simic. I do know him.
13 Q. Did you ever see -- speak to him in a professional capacity?
14 A. No. We were not that close, but we did see each other in the town
15 sometimes. I also know his brother Cedo.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 Look around the room and see if you can identify those men,
19 A. Simo Zaric, Blagoje Simic, Miro Tadic, nicknamed Brko.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. DI FAZIO: The witness indicated the sequence of the
22 defendants, using his hands, if Your Honours please, and I think that's
23 sufficient for the record that he correctly identified the defendants.
24 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
25 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Do we need to say, Mr. Di Fazio, going from the
1 right to the left?
2 MR. DI FAZIO: That would -- yes, that would clarify the matter
3 and seal it finally. Thank you, if Your Honours please, and that that is
4 indeed the position in which they're seated.
5 Q. I want you to turn your mind to the events of the night of the
6 16th and 17th of April. There's no question that on that night
7 hostilities broke out in Bosanski Samac. Were you at home on that night?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Did you hear the sound of gunfire and that sort of thing?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Did you go outside at any time during the night?
12 A. Yes, into my yard.
13 Q. What was your address at the time, that is, on the 16th and 17th
14 of April, 1992? What number, what street did you live in in Bosanski
16 A. Ivo Lola Ribar Street number 14/12.
17 Q. How long had you lived there?
18 A. From the day when I was born. I was born in my father's house,
19 and then I built my own house, but that was in 1975. I built it in the
20 same position.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 And as long as you had lived there, had the street always been
23 called Ivo Lola Ribar Street?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. What's it called nowadays?
1 A. Draza Mihajlovic Street.
2 Q. Now, you said that in the --
3 JUDGE MUMBA: Perhaps we may know when the name changed.
4 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.
5 Q. Have you any idea when the change of name took place?
6 A. All the street names in Samac have been changed. Tito Street is
7 now called Karadjordje Street.
8 JUDGE MUMBA: I just want to find out: Is it after 1993?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
11 Q. Let's turn to your foray outside into the yard. Did you see
12 anything when you went outside?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 I'd just like to get an idea of the circumstances. About what
16 time of the night was it?
17 A. At around 1.00 a.m.
18 Q. Can you tell the Chamber if there was any street lighting in the
19 vicinity of where you were standing?
20 A. Yes. It's an intersection, and there is a very strong light
21 there. That's where my house is.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 Can you proceed to tell the Chamber now what you saw when you went
25 A. When I got out into my yard, the house across the street, owned by
1 Belkisa, somebody said from there, "Bobic, go back. Go back in." I
2 was -- I lay down into the flowers, flower bed that was there, and I saw
3 Fadil Topcagic leading about 10 or 12 men there. There was Lugar there,
4 also Tralja. I met him later on, and that's why I knew him. And they
5 passed me by at a distance of maybe three or four metres, and they went on
6 into the intersection. And there was shooting going on from the direction
7 of the stadium. I went back into my home, and that's it.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 I take it that at the time you didn't know who Lugar and Tralja
10 and these other men were. Did you, unfortunately, in subsequent weeks,
11 become acquainted with them?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 Did you remain inside your house for the rest of the night?
15 A. Yes. A colleague of mine called me, Vlado Sarkanovic, and he said
16 that Samac fell and that I shouldn't go anywhere. And I remained at home
17 and didn't go anywhere.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 Did you receive any news as to what had happened via the radio?
20 A. Yes. They said, in the morning, at around 10.00 a.m. or maybe
21 9.30, that Samac now belonged to Serbs and that the population shouldn't
22 congregate in groups and that they should be wearing white cloths or
23 scarves, and that's about it.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 Were those instructions issued to all the population?
1 A. Yes. For the non-Serb population, Croats and Muslims.
2 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Pantelic.
3 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, Your Honour. It's a little bit confusing,
4 page 43, line 16. Maybe I'm wrong, but when the witness mentioned white
5 clothes and scarves, in fact, in B/C/S language, he said bandannas,
7 MR. DI FAZIO: I'll clarify that.
8 Q. Now you made it clear that the instructions were directed to the
9 non-Serb population. Defence counsel would also like you to, if you can,
10 tell the Chamber what the instructions were as to the white items that had
11 to be worn. Can you remember that with any more clarity?
12 A. That they should be placed around one's arm, like this, over the
13 right arm, like this.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, the witness demonstrates
16 with a white tissue placed on his upper-right arm.
17 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
18 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
19 Q. In the days that followed, did the tele -- well, perhaps not in
20 the days that followed, but indeed on that day, the 17th, and in
21 subsequent days, did you continue to have use of your telephone?
22 A. Yes, for a few days, and then all the Muslims and Croats were
23 disconnected. Only Serbs had telephone lines, because they had the post
24 office in their hands. They took all the vital communications, the post
25 office, the municipality, the courthouse, and so on.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 Can you tell the Chamber how it is that you know that the Serbs
3 still retained their telephone lines? How can you make -- how can you say
4 that? With what authority can you make that assertion?
5 A. Because we no longer had the communications. I communicated with
6 my neighbours, and one could only communicate from a Serb house. You had
7 to go to a Serb if you wanted to call anyone in Brcko, and they in fact
8 did accommodate us. They did allow us to make phone calls.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 Do you know a gentleman named Miroslav Rakic, also known as Celo?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Do you know another fellow, Dragan Tubonjic, also known as
14 A. Yes. He's from Samac, and the former is a police officer from
15 Odzak. So Rakic is from Odzak, and Tubonjic is from Bosanski Samac.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 Did you see them in the period of time following the 16th and 17th
18 of April?
19 A. Yes. They came to my house and they said that there was a sniper
20 upstairs, and I told him, "Please be my guest." They went upstairs,
21 didn't find anything, and then went back downstairs, had coffee with me.
22 Tubonja took my brother's hunting rifle and took it with him. He did not
23 give me any documents. It was a trophy weapon that belonged to my
24 brother. He used to be a huntsman. He had died previously, and his son
25 Nermin inherited the rifle. He took the rifle as a trophy, and the firing
1 pin had been filed away in the SUP previously. So they just kept the
2 weapon as a trophy.
3 Q. For the purposes of the Chamber, is it the case that the removal
4 of the firing pin completely disables the weapon?
5 A. Yes. It is no longer functional. It's just like a picture on the
7 Q. Indeed, is that where it was kept, up on the wall, as a trophy?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 These two fellows, Rakic and Tubonjic, were they members of the
11 4th Detachment?
12 A. Well, I couldn't really say that, because I don't know. Things
13 that I don't know, I don't know.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 Please don't tell us something if you don't know. If you don't
16 know something, make that clear. Were they policemen working in
17 Bosanski Samac? One of them was from Odzak, but what about the other one?
18 A. No. He still hadn't completed his education, and at that time I
19 did some work for the school, and that's why I know that very well, that
20 he was still going to school.
21 Q. With what authority did they come into your house and take away
22 your brother's trophy? Did they ever say that they were acting on
23 instructions, with authority, that they held any particular position? Can
24 you recall anything? If you can't recall, say so, but if you can recall
25 anything that they said to indicate with what backing they came to seize
1 the weapon, please let us know.
2 A. Yes. They said that they had to take that to SUP, and they never
3 brought it back. That was the intention with which they had come.
4 Q. Thank you.
5 Did you understand them to be acting on behalf of the SUP, on
6 behalf of police from the SUP?
7 A. No.
8 Q. Okay. In subsequent days, did you move from your house to the
9 home of a person nearby, Mesud Nogic?
10 A. Yes. All of us neighbours were there. Mesud Nogic was there, as
11 was his wife, who is a Serb, Gordana. There were unfortunately two other
12 men there who were killed immediately upon leaving that place. One of
13 them was Hodzic Mirsad, Sead Hurtic, who was killed in Crkvina later.
14 There were other neighbours there. There was a lady Croat with her son,
15 and some other neighbours. It was the safest place for us.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 MR. DI FAZIO: Would Your Honours just permit me to confer with my
18 colleague, please?
19 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
20 [Prosecution counsel confer]
21 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
22 Q. How long did you remain there?
23 A. Since that was right next to my house, we would go back and
24 forth. The war had already started. People were coming from Slavonia. I
25 don't know exactly where from.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 A. This was coming from Croatia. The war had broken out and people
3 were hiding in the shelters.
4 Q. Thank you.
5 In the few days following the 16th and 17th of April, did you go
6 to the TO building in Bosanski Samac?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Why did you go there?
9 A. They made an announcement on the radio that all men from Bosanski
10 Samac who had remained and were non-Serbs, meaning Croats or Muslims,
11 should report. And we went there to have our names recorded. They asked
12 me there where I had served in my mandatory military service. I told them
13 that I was in logistics, I worked in the kitchen. And then they asked who
14 was a member of the anti-rocket units, who was in an anti-sabotage unit,
15 in the tank unit, and so on. The people who had been in the communication
16 unit, the signalmen, fared the worst. It was just a list of Muslim and
17 Croat men, referring to where they had served in the military service and
18 at which time period.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 You said in your answer that people who had been in the
21 communications unit fared the worst. Are you there referring to what
22 happened to them subsequently in prisons in the -- in and around
23 Bosanski Samac?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 I take it from your answer that you are aware of what the men, the
2 Muslims and Croats who accompanied you to the TO, were asked as well?
3 A. After having asked us where we had served, they told us to go back
4 to our homes, and we went home without any fear. They let us go and we
5 went home. That's what happened.
6 Q. Okay. That's fine. All I'm interested in is this: You've
7 indicated two areas that they were interested in, one is who you were,
8 what your name was; and secondly, what you did in the course of your
9 military service. Is that a correct position?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Other than those two areas, were there any other inquiries about
12 anything else?
13 A. No, there were no more inquiries.
14 Q. You were arrested, I believe, on the 23rd of May, 1992.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 Up until that time, that is, between the 16th and 17th of April
18 and the 23rd of May, 1992, when you were arrested, did you see your son
19 performing any labour or forced labour?
20 A. Yes. All of them went to perform labour, not just my son. All of
21 them went. They went to the PIK factory. They also went to work in the
22 fields. They did all kinds of jobs.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 When you say "all of them," who do you mean?
25 A. I mean the population, non-Serb population. I mean the Muslims.
1 Even women had to perform labour.
2 Q. And what sort of work was your son doing? What sort of tasks was
3 he given?
4 A. He had to go and dig trenches in Gradacac. Palata Sacir and
5 Odobasic got killed then. He was wounded. He fell. He was collapsed and
6 then he was brought back to Samac and then he was spared from work for a
7 while, and later on worked in the post office.
8 Q. When you say "he was wounded," are you referring to one of those
9 two men that you mentioned, Palata and the other gentleman, Odobasic?
10 A. They were killed. Sacir and Odobasic. Sacir was a teacher or
11 something like that. He worked in education.
12 Q. Who was wounded?
13 A. My son was not wounded. He simply fell. He slipped, out of fear,
14 or just collapsed, and then he was brought home and stayed in bed for a
15 few days. And then Stevo told him to go with him. The cow was
16 confiscated and taken to the field in Pisari and then he worked there.
17 They didn't abuse him.
18 Q. Okay. Okay. Let's just take it a bit more slowly so that we can
19 make sure we all understand what you're saying. The place that your
20 son --
21 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Pantelic.
22 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, Your Honour. Page 49, line 24, after the
23 word "abused him" and then full stop, I believe that witness said: "And
24 he was feeling well then, he was in good condition there." So maybe just
25 for the sake of transcript we can clarify that, because the witness added
1 something after these words.
2 JUDGE MUMBA: Very well.
3 MR. DI FAZIO: Certainly. I'll clarify that.
4 Q. After your son was taken to the fields in Pisari and worked there,
5 did he -- was he in better or in good health condition?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. All right. Let's go back to the period of time when he was in
8 Gradacac and working on trenches. Did he ever report to you that he was
9 digging trenches in Gradacac at the same time that combat was going on?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 Now I want to turn to the sequence of events leading to your
13 arrest. You've told us that you were arrested on the 23rd of May, 1992,
14 but in fact I want to ask you about an episode that occurred before that.
15 Do you know a man named Pero Kitic or Katic?
16 A. Pero Kitic. He was a chess player, a friend of mine.
17 Q. Incidentally, just let's diverge there. Were you a well-known
18 chess player in Bosnia prior to April of 1992?
19 A. I was.
20 Q. Did you play competitively and at a fairly high level?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Thank you. All right.
23 Let's turn to this man Kitic, Pero Kitic. Did he ever come to your
24 house following the 16th -- the events of the 16th and 17th of April?
25 A. Yes. He played chess. There was a competition, memorial
1 competition, in the memorial hall. Dragan Jokanovic and chess players
2 from all over Yugoslavia, Croatia, Macedonia, used to come, from all over
3 former Yugoslavia. Pero Kitic stayed in my house, together with seven
4 other people. At the time he lived in Vukovar and worked there, although
5 originally he was from Bosnia, but I can't remember the name of the
6 village. He was a very nice man.
7 Q. All right. Okay. Thank you.
8 But I'm now talking about events following the 16th and 17th of
9 April, after that, those dates. Did he come to your house?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Who was he with, if anyone?
12 A. He came with Fadil Topcagic. There was a Ford vehicle there, Ford
13 Tranzit vehicle. Fadil knocked on the door and my wife went to open the
14 door and came to tell me that they wanted to see me. I went out into the
15 yard. Pero Kitic stepped out of the vehicle and said to Fadil, "You carry
16 on with the list. I know Kemal, and I cannot take him with me." So he
17 basically saved my skin then. He was a Serb by ethnicity, but he was a
18 good man.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 Do you actually recall reference to a list?
21 A. I don't know which list you mean. Is it the list pertaining to
22 people being taken away?
23 Q. I'm not asking you to identify any list or anything like that.
24 All I'm interested in knowing is: Did Pero Kitic, when he told Topcagic
25 not to take you, did he refer to a list of some sort?
1 A. Yes. He said, "You carry on according to the list." And they
2 went on. He came into the house with me. He knew Biba's name; he knew
3 her by her name. He greeted us. He sat down. We started eating. And he
4 told me, "Kemal, don't leave the house. The war is going on. There are
5 many paramilitaries here in Samac, so just remain where you are. I will
6 be here." That's how it was.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 And was Topcagic a member of the 4th Detachment, as far as you're
10 A. I can't tell you anyone who was in the 4th Detachment just because
11 I don't know for sure. I don't know who was a member of the
12 4th Detachment. I know that Simo was the commander of the 4th Detachment,
13 and now, as to the people who were members, I don't know. What I just
14 told you, I know based on my previous knowledge of the party. It was
15 associated with the party movement for Yugoslavia.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 Let's turn now to the events of the 23rd of 1992.
18 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Excuse me.
19 I wonder whether, Mr. Bobic, you could just briefly elaborate.
20 You say, in response to Mr. Di Fazio's question concerning the
21 4th Detachment that you don't know who was a member of the 4th Detachment,
22 but then you go on to say that Simo was the commander of the
23 4th Detachment. I wonder whether you could tell us, first of all, Simo
24 who; and secondly, how did you know that this person was the commander of
25 the 4th Detachment?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was widely known in Samac. They
2 knew who was the president of the HDZ. It was somebody named Nujic. We
3 knew who was the president of the municipality. Izet Izetbegovic was the
4 president of our party, the SDA, and then Sulejman Tihic came.
5 Mr. Boro Pisarevic was the president of the SDP, and Mesud Nogic. These
6 were the parties that existed.
7 There was a youth party, president of MOS was my son, as I have
8 told you previously. It was all known. There was the SDS party, which I
9 didn't mention. I can't tell you who was the member of the 4th Detachment
10 and who was the member of the SDS, because I think that that was
11 identical. That's all I have to say. I can't claim, but I think that's
12 how it was.
13 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Excuse me, Mr. Bobic, but my question was
14 specific. You mention that somebody called Simo was the commander of the
15 4th Detachment, and my question is: Simo who? What is the surname? And
16 secondly, how you knew that this person was the commander of the
17 4th Detachment.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Simo Zaric was the commander of the
19 4th Detachment. Many Muslims used to come to my shop. Many of them who
20 were members of the 4th Detachment. There were a lot of Muslims in
21 Simo Zaric's unit. This is common knowledge.
22 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honour, if I'm allowed. I mean, we all heard
23 this witness speaking in our language, when using the term "president of
24 the 4th Detachment"
25 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
1 MR. LAZAREVIC: Literally, he said "president." And in the
2 transcript we have noticed that the word "commander" was used. Because
3 this witness was testifying about certain links within certain political
4 party, and we are not 100 per cent sure that he's using correct words for
5 detachment and the party. So maybe this could be clarified.
6 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. I'm sure Mr. Di Fazio can clarify that with
7 the witness.
8 MR. DI FAZIO: If it's a question of translation, certainly I'll
9 do that, but of course someone may refer to someone as being a president
10 of a body even though someone might use a different term. But I'll
11 clarify that with the witness.
12 Q. Just tell us again how you regarded Simo Zaric's role in the
13 4th Detachment. Did you regard him as the president of that body or the
14 commander of that body?
15 A. He was something of a commander, commander of the 4th Detachment.
16 I'm not fully sure, and I apologise if I made any mistakes. At the time,
17 all political parties were legal, so that I don't see any issue there.
18 Q. Thank you. And you haven't made any mistakes.
19 Did you ever see Simo Zaric engaged in any activity, doing
20 anything or saying anything, that indicated to you his role in the
21 4th Detachment?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 Let's go now to the 23rd of May, 1992, the day of your arrest.
25 Did men come to your house?
1 A. Yes. They came on the 23rd of May. Naser Sejdic came, with two
2 other men whom I didn't know. They came by foot, because my house was
3 close to the SUP building. I lived in Ivo Lola Ribar Street, and the SUP
4 building was in Marsala Tito Street.
5 They told me -- Naser told me that I had to go to the SUP building
6 because Simo Zaric had ordered me to be taken in for an informative
7 interview. So he told me -- they told me that, and I went there on foot.
8 And as I got there, he was there in the office. Savo Djordjevic was
9 there, a former policeman from Rijeka. He told me, "Go into the room." I
10 entered the room, and then he told me, "Kemal," he had already known my
11 name, "Kemal, empty your pockets." And I took out everything. I had a
12 handkerchief there, money, my shop keys. And he told me, "Just leave it
13 all there." So I put it on the desk. And then he said, "Take off your
14 shoelaces." So I took shoelaces out of both of my shoes. I put it on the
15 desk as well. And then he told me, "Go on. You can go either down into
16 the yard or to the room across the corridor." So I went to that room that
17 was across from the toilet.
18 And as I entered that room, I saw people in there, and I asked
19 them what was going on. And then Zlatko Stanic, the director of the
20 electrical power company, a wonderful man, told me, "Kemal, just keep
21 quiet." And I kept quiet.
22 Mato Matok was there, Ahmed Coralic, Mirsad Cosic, and then a man
23 with the last name of Pelesevic. I can't remember his first name. All in
24 all, there were 12 or 15 of us. So I was in that room that was previously
25 used for issuing IDs and passports. And then a young man of a very large
1 build came in --
2 Q. Can I ask you just to pause there? Thank you. We've got the
3 picture now and I just want to clarify one or two aspects about that
5 First of all, the man who came to the house to get you in the
6 first place, Naser Sejdic, what ethnic background was he?
7 A. Naser Sejdic, yes. He was a Muslim.
8 Q. Do you know if he -- I withdraw that question. Thank you.
9 And the men whose names you just read out in that last answer, who
10 were in the room that you were -- that you entered, what ethnic background
11 were they?
12 A. Croats and Muslims. Stanic was a Croat, Mato Matok was a Croat,
13 and there were a number of Muslims there. It's been a long time, ten or
14 eleven years, so I can't remember it all.
15 Q. Yes, but all I want to know is this: Were they Croats and
17 A. They were.
18 Q. Thanks.
19 And the other man you mentioned who greeted you when you first
20 arrived, Savo Djordjevic, I believe his name was, was he of Serbian
22 A. Yes. He is a former policeman from Rijeka.
23 Q. Where is Rijeka?
24 A. Croatia.
25 Q. Okay. Thanks.
1 Now, let's go back to the room in which you were kept. Were you
2 eventually taken from that room to somewhere else in the SUP building?
3 A. Yes. A man came whom, as I will later find out, was the bodyguard
4 of Stevan Todorovic, so he came in. And he said, "Who is new here?" I
5 said I was, and he said, "Come upstairs," so I came upstairs, and they
6 told me it was going to be an informative interview and this is how they
7 got us to come to SUP. They tricked us, in fact. And then they told
8 me -- I was about to sit down, and then Stiv said, "No, no, no," and then
9 he started hitting me with a baton on my face and then my eye, you can
10 still see, is a bit smaller. He started hitting me.
11 Q. I'm going to get you to give details of that in a moment, but
12 before you get there, there's some questions I'd like to ask you. First
13 of all, the condition -- I forgot to ask you the condition of the men in
14 the room downstairs, the men who you described, the Muslims and Croats who
15 you were with. Had they been beaten or attacked on this occasion, or did
16 they appear to be physically in reasonable condition?
17 A. They were intimidated. Some of them had been beaten, not all of
18 them. They were afraid, which is natural. The war was on. If they
19 brought you to the SUP building, that means that people had reason to be
20 afraid, because they had done nothing wrong but were brought there.
21 Q. Okay. Thank you.
22 Now let's turn back to the room in which Todorovic started to beat
23 you. First of all, can you tell us the names of everyone who was in the
24 room at that time?
25 A. All right. There was Stevan Todorovic, Stiv; then there was
1 Perica Krstanovic; and Predrag Adzic and also Stiv's bodyguard. Stiv beat
2 me up there just as I started telling you a minute ago. He kicked me with
3 his shoes some 10 to 12 times. I fell down. And then he hit me in my
4 chest. And I started -- the blood started coming out. And he told me to
5 wipe it, and I wiped it with my sweater. I wiped the blood. And then he
6 said, "Take him downstairs." I came downstairs, and the people in the
7 room came to my assistance immediately.
8 Q. Thank you. Let's go back to the beating.
9 First of all, did Todorovic use any instruments?
10 A. Yes. He hit me with a baton which was about 20 centimetres long,
11 directly in my eye, and I still can't see very well in that eye. I was
12 all blue and bruised.
13 Q. Which eye?
14 A. Here, in my left eye.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 A. You can see that it's smaller.
17 Q. Is that the result -- that disability, the fact that it's smaller,
18 a consequence of the beating that you suffered at the hands of Todorovic
19 on this occasion?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And in addition to it being smaller, can you actually see with
22 that eye very well?
23 A. I can see in a certain percentage. When I went to the retirement
24 commission, they told me that my eyesight was 60 per cent worse.
25 Q. Right. Put very simply, did the beating and the blow that you
1 received to your eye not only make your eye look smaller, but did it
2 actually affect the vision? That's all I want to know.
3 A. Yes, naturally.
4 Q. Okay. You also said that you had to clean the blood that you were
5 spitting up. Clean it from where?
6 A. Off the desk, his desk -- I mean Stiv's desk, because that's where
7 everything was happening, in his office.
8 Q. Did the others come to your aid or do anything to try to restrain
9 him or control him?
10 A. No. No. They just looked on.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 You were taken downstairs?
13 A. Yes. Then Stiv ordered me to be taken downstairs. The people in
14 the room downstairs gave me aid, gave me some water, and wiped off the
15 blood with a bandanna. And then as I leaned against the wall to rest, the
16 bodyguard of Stevan Todorovic came and said, "Bobic, you're wanted
17 upstairs again." When I got up there, Simo Zaric was sitting there,
18 probably to see what I looked like.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 Now, when you say when you got up there, what room are you talking
21 about? Was it the same room in which you had been attacked by Todorovic
22 or was it a different room?
23 A. The same room where I had been beaten.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 A. Where Stevo beat me.
1 Q. Thank you. And who was present in the room? Go through the
2 names, please.
3 A. Stevan Todorovic was up there; so was Simo Zaric now, he was there
4 too; Predrag Adzic, Taso's son; and Perica Krstanovic, Zivko's son was up
5 there. They called him in to -- so that he was -- would be able to see
6 what I looked like, and when he saw me, he laughed ironically, and
7 Todorovic said, "Take him down, downstairs." They didn't beat me any
8 more. I went downstairs and the man on the staircase told me, "You got
9 off lightly."
10 Q. Do I take it from your answer that you did not hear Mr. Zaric
11 actually say anything in the room other than the laughter that you've
12 referred to, the ironic laughter that you referred to, you didn't hear him
13 say anything. Is that the situation?
14 A. No. No, he didn't say anything to me. He knows very well that
15 this is the truth.
16 Q. Thanks. How long did you remain in the SUP building in custody?
17 A. I was in the SUP building from the 23rd of May until the 28th of
18 June, when I was transferred to the TO building, across the road from SUP,
19 because the Territorial Defence building had its premises there. So I was
20 transferred to a larger room there. There were two rooms there, quite
21 big, and that's where we were transferred. We slept in the area where
22 weapons had been kept before. It was some kind of a large bed.
23 Q. Thank you. I'm interested in the period of time in which you were
24 in custody in the SUP building, and I'm now concentrating on that, not the
25 TO, okay? So you're in the SUP until 28th of June, 1992. In that period
1 of time, did more and more prisoners keep coming in, being kept at the
3 A. Yes, they kept bringing them.
4 Q. Of what ethnic background were these people?
5 A. Croats and Muslims.
6 Q. Did they endure beatings?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Can you comment on the frequency with which beatings were
9 inflicted in the SUP in that period of time, that month up to the 28th of
11 A. Do you mean as far as I'm concerned, when I was transferred to the
12 TO, from the 28th of June onwards? Because I explained that I was
13 transferred to --
14 Q. I'm concentrating on the SUP. Keep your mind focused on the SUP
15 building, okay, up until the 28th -- we'll get to the TO later, all right?
16 Now, in that period of time that you were in the SUP, can you
17 comment on the frequency of beatings? And that applies to you, if you
18 were beaten, but also to any other beatings that any other prisoners
19 suffered. I want to know if it was a frequent occurrence, a rare
20 occurrence, whether it occurred daily, if so, how often, whether it
21 occurred only at night, whether it occurred in the day, that sort of
23 A. People were taken out every day. We were in this room that I have
24 already described, where passports and ID cards used to be issued. And we
25 saw all the people who were taken to SUP and those who left SUP. It was
1 possible to see out, because there were some transparent openings there.
2 And every day somebody was brought in, and after a while the room became
3 too crowded. Nobody could fit in any more. There was a desk there.
4 There was also a filing cabinet for ID cards, and also some other items
5 where the forms for ID cards and passports were kept.
6 Q. Okay. We'll get to the living conditions in a moment, but let's
7 get first to the beatings. Can you comment on the frequency of beatings
8 in the SUP in that month?
9 A. Well, I didn't see that, but one could only hear the screams. And
10 when we went to the toilet, the corridor was quite short and narrow, as
11 this desk, and there were rooms on both sides of the corridor, and you
12 could see blood on the wall. We heard everything. We heard the screams
13 when people were beaten, people from -- that's what we heard from our
14 room. But I didn't see it. I didn't see who beat them, how they were
15 beaten. But the people who conducted the beatings were always the same.
16 Q. Thank you. Okay. Thank you for clarifying that. How often would
17 you hear the screams? How often would you hear the screams of people
18 being beaten?
19 A. It was quite often, and people could hear it even from Slavonia,
20 because the SUP building was quite close to the Sava River, and that's how
21 I heard later on that people in Orasje heard it. Even when I was beaten
22 they heard it. This was done mostly at night. They would come in drunk
23 and they would beat people. They were led by Stevo Todorovic. That was
24 the select company.
25 Q. Thank you. You say that it occurred mostly at night. Did you
1 ever hear the screams resulting from beatings during the day?
2 A. To a lesser extent. Perhaps sometimes, but it was not as strong,
3 because people were also brought in at night.
4 Q. Okay. Thank you. In the limited travel that you had in the
5 building, in the actual inside of the building, in that month, did you see
6 blood on walls wherever you went or was it only in certain locations?
7 A. In a certain location in the corridor down there.
8 Q. Thanks. Now let's -- can you tell the Chamber about the living
9 conditions that you had in that month up to your transfer to the TO?
10 First of all, food and water. What sort of food did you get, how often,
11 and what about water?
12 A. We did have water. We hardly received any food at all. We would
13 receive some tea once a day, and that was one cup for two people, just a
14 few sips for each of us. And we would also receive a very thin slice of
15 white bread. We would be given this around noon and as soon as we ate
16 they came in to beat us. The beatings followed immediately afterwards.
17 Q. What about sleeping conditions? Were you provided with anywhere
18 to lie down, anything to keep warm at night, blankets, pillows, anything
19 like that?
20 A. In SUP we were not given anything. We couldn't really sleep. How
21 could one sleep when people would be brought in from their work every day?
22 So that we just stood there. You couldn't -- you didn't have enough room
23 even to sit down any more.
24 Q. Thank you. All right. Now, you said that you were transferred to
25 the TO building on the 28th of June. Everyone knows that that's just
1 across the road from the SUP. But before we get on to what happened in
2 the SUP, I want to ask you this question: Up until the 28th of June, had
3 anyone explained to you why you had been arrested, what it was that you
4 had done wrong to cause you to be locked up in this room at the SUP?
5 A. No one did. No. We were just brought there, myself and all the
7 Q. All right. Let's turn our attention now to the TO. You were
8 transferred there on the 28th of June, 1992, and on the 3rd of July --
9 just answer me yes or no. Just answer me yes or no: On the 3rd of July,
10 were you beaten?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Very well. I'll return to the issue of that particular episode
13 later, but first of all, I want you to tell the Chamber of the conditions
14 in the -- generally that existed in the TO. Did other men suffer
16 A. Yes. They beat people every day. A German by the name of Inger
17 [phoen] was with me. There was the parish priest, Jozo Puskaric. He
18 served in Croatia and from Hrvatska Tisina. And also there were some
19 other 11 Croatian lads who were beaten from Hrvatska Tisina. Zvaka Rakic
20 beat them, Spasoje Bogdanovic, Sole, Slobodan Jacimovic, Slavko
21 Trivunovic. That was the team that beat them.
22 Q. These names that you have just mentioned, were they local men or
23 men from surrounding towns and villages?
24 A. Yes. Slobodan Jacimovic is from Batkusa, the others were from
25 Skarici. There's this guy by the name of Krezo Makso Teodorovic, father's
1 name Isailo. He's also from Batkusa. He brought in the people from
2 Serbia to beat us. He invented all kinds of things; that I didn't like
3 Serbs, and then they would beat me; that the parish priest had raped a
4 Serb child aged 7, and then Lugar and the others would beat the parish
5 priest. And also the 11 guys outside. And scenes like this just kept
6 being repeated.
7 Q. That's what I want to know. You say scenes like this kept being
8 repeated. Was it a daily occurrence that attacks of this nature took
10 A. Yes. It happened also during the day and during the night.
11 Q. Did the men who were attacked scream and cry out loudly during
12 their beatings?
13 A. Yes, of course they did.
14 Q. Were they beaten and did they scream and cry out loudly in the
15 courtyard of the TO building?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. What was the ethnic background of the men who were imprisoned in.
18 TO building?
19 A. Muslims and Croats. Jozo Puskaric was a Croat. He was the parish
20 priest. And there was also this German guy by the name of Jurgen. I
21 think his last name was Janke, Jurgen Janke.
22 Q. Was he a truck driver who found himself inside?
23 A. Yes. He was heading for Gradacac and then in Pelagicevo they
24 stopped him and made him return to Samac. His truck was parked in front
25 of the SUP. I wouldn't have been able to understand him, but
1 Esef Zaimovic [As interpreted] spoke fluent German and we were able to
2 speak to him. Esef Zaimbegovic [As interpreted] was a manager in Uniglas,
3 which was a German company.
4 Q. Thank you. Thank you.
5 How long did you remain in the TO altogether?
6 A. I was there from the 28th, and then the night that they
7 transferred us to Batkovici, I think it was on the 11th of October, as far
8 as I can remember. They took us to Batkovici with our eyes tied, with
9 blindfolds, and we went on two buses.
10 Q. Fine. Thank you.
11 Now let's remain with the TO building, and remember that I'm going
12 to come back to your individual -- the beating that you suffered on the
13 3rd of July later. I'm now talking about what you saw happened to other
14 men, okay? The beatings that you've described, were instruments used?
15 A. Yes. Baseball bats, and also batons, but not the standard-issue
16 police batons, but really big ones. Then parts of chairs. They brought
17 in all kinds of planks. And then we would see -- as we walked around, we
18 saw a military small truck, TAM, and we saw everything on that truck. So
19 we couldn't sleep at night.
20 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Lukic?
21 A. And then they took us out.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, page 65, line 25, it
23 says on the 11th of October. I think that the witness said on the 11th or
24 on the 10th. So could we just clarify whether he did mention the month at
25 all, and what month he thinks that they were brought in. Because I
1 understood him to have said "on the 11th or on the 10th." Could this be
2 clarified with the witness, please.
3 MR. DI FAZIO: Thanks.
4 Q. Just so we can be clear about what was actually interpreted to us,
5 Mr. Bobic: Did you say that you were transferred to Batkovici on the 10th
6 or 11th of October? Was that your answer?
7 A. I think it was in November. It's either on the 11th of October or
8 on the 10th of November. I can't remember.
9 Q. Don't bother referring to material, Mr. Bobic. It's okay. I'm
10 happy with your answer. It was later in the year, October or November,
11 you were transferred to Batkovici. That will do me fine. Thank you very
13 A. [In English] Yes.
14 Q. Did men in the TO ever have their teeth pulled?
15 A. [Interpretation] Yes.
16 Q. You suffered that fate, I believe.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. We'll get to it later. What about other men? Did you see other
19 men having their teeth pulled?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Did anyone in particular engage in that activity, or was it more
22 than one person?
23 A. That was Slavko Trivunovic. His nickname was Zubar, dentist. It
24 was a well-known fact. He pulled people's teeth out.
25 Q. Were people forced to sing songs?
1 A. Yes. Every night we sang songs, "From Topola to Ravna Gora,"
2 "General Draza's Guards are Everywhere." And if somebody used the word
3 "djeneral" instead of "general," then he would be beaten. They also had
4 to sing some other songs and then they would single out a soldier -- I'm
5 sorry -- they would single out one of the prisoners, give him a baton, and
6 then he would have to act as a conductor in a way. That was the way it
7 was done.
8 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Di Fazio, I think we're going into the details
9 which are not contested by the Defence, as you know, the ill-treatment in
10 those places.
11 MR. DI FAZIO: I've just about wrapped that up, if Your Honours
12 please. I'm now going to go to the specific beating. And following that,
13 when I go to Batkovici, there will be virtually just a very brief overview
14 of --
15 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, but I think we've wasted some time on the
16 details of matters not contested by the Defence. This has been cleared
18 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. Well, I don't intend to go into the matters
19 generally any further, if Your Honour pleases.
20 Q. The beating that you suffered in particular on the 3rd of July,
21 who inflicted that upon you, and what time was it?
22 A. It was at night. It was at 1.00 a.m. Stevan Todorovic, Stiv, was
23 there; so was Slavko Trifunovic; Slobodan Jacimovic; Slobodan Rakic,
24 nicknamed Zvaka; Spaso Bogdanovic, called Sole; Tubonja; Savo Cancarevic.
25 I can't remember all the names. There were quite a few of them.
1 There were also people from the outside, not the locals, people
2 from Serbia, whom I didn't know. They came to beat me that night because
3 a man by the name of Kapija had died. He was killed in the war. And
4 whenever something like that happened, if a Serb got killed, they would
5 come to the camp and beat us.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 Now, in the course of the attack that you suffered that night,
8 were you struck with a rifle?
9 A. Yes. Bobo Radulovic was there. I didn't mention him. He was a
10 former police officer in Odzak. Boban Radulovic, nicknamed Bobo, from
11 Skarici, he worked as a police officer in Odzak; he and Jacimovic started
12 beating me right away. And I said Slobodan, "Don't beat me." And Bobo
13 said, "Hit him. You know -- you see that he knows your name." So he
14 first struck me in the head, here, and I had a really big gash here. And
15 one could see my skull, because the skin just collapsed. And later on
16 they had to put stitches. They broke both of my arms.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 Let me direct you to what I want from this episode, okay? Just
19 the injury that you suffered to your skull. You can see now visibly,
20 quite clearly, a deep scar that you have across your forehead, about
21 three inches long, quite visible, quite deep. Is that as a result of the
22 blow that you suffered with a rifle butt?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 Were cigarettes extinguished in your mouth?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Did you have a nail driven into your leg just below the knee?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Do you still have a scar as a result of the nail being hammered
5 into your leg?
6 You need to say yes or no so it's recorded. I can't hear you.
7 A. Yes.
8 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, I've seen the scar that he
9 bears on his leg as a result of the nail being driven in. Do you want the
10 witness to show it to the Chamber?
11 JUDGE MUMBA: Is there any contest?
12 MR. DI FAZIO: I don't think there will be any contest, but --
13 JUDGE MUMBA: No, it's not necessary.
14 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you. Very well.
15 JUDGE MUMBA: You can just describe what -- just briefly.
16 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
17 Q. Was your leg broken?
18 A. Yes. It was fractured, but not fully.
19 Q. Subsequently --
20 A. -- down there, on my right leg.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 Subsequently, in the United States, did you have to have metal
23 plate and pins put into your leg at the site of that injury?
24 A. No. They didn't put it on my leg, but I had surgery on my left
25 arm, here.
1 Q. Yes. I'll get to your arms in a moment. I may be wrong about the
2 metal plate. Is it the case that you've only got the metal plates in your
3 arms, not your leg?
4 A. Just on my left arm, here.
5 Q. Thank you.
6 A. That's where I had the surgery in the States.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 Were both of your forearms broken?
9 A. Yes. Here. I have pins all over this arm here.
10 MR. DI FAZIO: For the purposes of the record, if Your Honours
11 please, the witness demonstrates -- shows us his forearms and the visible
12 scars on the forearms.
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
14 MR. DI FAZIO:
15 Q. Did they, in attacking you, use a heavy metal spring, baseball
16 bats, other instruments?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And were your teeth pulled from your jaw, healthy teeth, pulled
19 out of your jaw that night?
20 A. Yes. Four of my teeth were pulled out.
21 Q. And I think you were fortunate enough to faint and lose
22 consciousness at some stage during this onslaught. Is that correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 JUDGE MUMBA: Can we have a break for 20 minutes?
25 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. Thank you very much.
1 JUDGE MUMBA: We'll continue our proceedings at 1250 hours.
2 --- Recess taken at 12.31 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 12.53 p.m.
4 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. The Prosecution is continuing.
5 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
6 Q. I want to turn now to your transfer to Batkovici. You've said
7 that took place in October or November of 1992. In Batkovici, did you
8 suffer the same sort of conditions as had existed in the SUP and TO, or
9 were things better there?
10 A. After we started from Samac to Batkovici, Savo Sofrenovic entered
11 the bus and told us that he had a difficult duty to perform. He gave us
12 white blindfolds to cover our eyes. I saw on my bus a man called Zvaka,
13 Slobodan Rakic, Zvaka, and Rakic Miroslav, who were both armed, and they
14 escorted us all the way to Batkovici. Savo told us to put the blindfold
15 on our eyes, that we were not allowed to look around as we were
16 travelling. Prior to that, women and children came to see us. They
17 cried. We had to leave and they remained there. I told my wife to go
18 home, and then the bus started, headed to Batkovici.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 A. We came to Batkovici --
21 Q. Thank you very much. Thank you for that. Let me ask you this:
22 When were you eventually exchanged in Sarajevo? What was the date?
23 A. It was on the 6th of October, 1994.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 MR. DI FAZIO: Would Your Honours just bear with me for a moment?
1 [Prosecution counsel confer]
2 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
3 Q. So --
4 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Di Fazio, on Batkovici, you did ask about the
5 conditions. There was no answer.
6 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, I know. I'm going to get to that. I was
7 getting the time frame first, and I'll get on to the conditions now.
8 Q. So about almost two years in Batkovici?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 Now let's get back to the conditions that you saw and experienced
12 in Batkovici. Compared to the TO and the SUP, what was it like there?
13 A. It was a bit better in Batkovici. We weren't afraid as much. We
14 felt a bit relieved. We went to work every day. When we came to
15 Batkovici, and before we entered the premises, I saw that it was a typical
16 camp with a wire around it. There were hangars there. We were standing
17 out in the freezing rain. And then the commander of the camp, whose name
18 I don't know, came. He left soon afterwards.
19 So he took us in and he said that we were in the Batkovici
20 collection or holding centre, and he told us that for any disobedience or
21 refusal to carry out tasks, we would be killed and abused. He warned us
22 not to try to escape. This is how it was in that camp.
23 We were lined in four lines. They started calling out names in an
24 alphabet order. Since my last name started with B, I was among the first
25 ones whose names were called out. There were two soldiers standing at the
1 door. I didn't know those two soldiers. But as we entered, the soldiers
2 hit us with their hands and kicked us in our bottoms. When I came in, I
3 found that 20 young Muslims from Bijeljina who had refused to join the
4 army, and they were brought there for 20 days, pursuant to the order of
5 the misdemeanour judge. This is how they explained it to me.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 I'm going to ask you, though, to describe conditions generally,
8 not bit by bit. Just over the two-year period that you were in Batkovici,
9 can you inform the Chamber of the sort of conditions that you had?
10 Perhaps you can tell us first of your sleeping conditions, what you had,
11 if anything; and secondly, any food and so on. And just be brief about
12 it. We just want a quick overview, a quick picture of it.
13 A. We slept on cement floor and we had some hay. We had nothing to
14 cover us with. These were huge hangars, they were very drafty, and they
15 were originally intended for grain.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Just a small detail. While the witness stayed
18 there for almost two years, what was the temperature during different
19 times of the year?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was unbearable. Hangars were
21 quite high, and they had thin wooden boards covering the ceiling, and
22 sometimes the temperature would climb quite high. We had a barrel split
23 in half in which we urinated, and that also contributed to the increased
24 temperature, and there was a very unpleasant stench inside. We were not
25 able to wash ourselves. We had no facilities for washing. Only sometimes
1 we would get some cold water.
2 JUDGE LINDHOLM: What about the winter?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was a bit better in wintertime,
4 because in the meantime the ICRC had come, and they registered us in
5 November, so they knew that we were there. Some people were exchanged,
6 and those of us who remained received blankets, clothes, coffee, sugar,
7 cigarettes. But later on they would take it away from us in the camp, so
8 it wasn't really of much use to us.
9 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
10 Q. One of the answers that you -- one of the matters raised in your
11 last answer is that you were registered in November by the ICRC. Can you
12 recall, November of what year? Was it 1992 or 1993, or indeed 1994 --
13 sorry, 1993?
14 A. 1992.
15 Q. So very soon after your arrival at Batkovici?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Now, had you had any contact with the ICRC previously at all?
18 A. Yes. In Bosanski Samac, in the SUP building, there was the Serb
19 Red Cross, not the international one. And a woman - I can't remember her
20 name, but she was the wife of Savo Petkovic - came, and she registered all
21 of us, entered our names in a notebook, and she came with another man. I
22 don't know him. That's how it was.
23 Q. Thank you. I'm actually more concerned about the International
24 Committee for the Red Cross. Did they -- did you ever have any contact
25 with them prior to being transferred to Batkovici?
1 A. No, we had no contact. They were looking for us in Samac, but
2 they couldn't find us there. And then some woman from Zasavica told them
3 that we were in the SUP and the TO buildings. I think her last name is
4 Porobic and the first name is Suhra. She told them where we were. And
5 then the International Red Cross Committee started searching for us and
6 exerting pressure, as a result of which they had to transfer us to
7 Batkovici once the exchanges started. That was a central camp, a typical
8 sort of camp.
9 Q. Thank you. Just while we're on this topic: Did you ever see or
10 hear of representatives of the ICRC coming into either the SUP or the TO
12 A. No. They were never there, because they were not allowed. They
13 had no access to us.
14 Q. Yes. Thank you. In the TO, was there a guard room close by?
15 A. Yes. Once you go through the room, there was the toilet nearby,
16 but we were not used -- we were not allowed to use that toilet frequently
17 because they would beat us on our way there. So we frequently had to use
18 old plastic bags to relieve ourselves in.
19 Q. Thank you. But the guard room, was that ever used for any other
21 A. It was used for their purposes, the guards who guarded us were
22 there. It was a well-furnished room. It had military-style iron beds.
23 And when the Red Cross came, they would go to that room. And then
24 sometimes -- somebody told me that the Red Cross was there, but we were
25 presented to them as Serbs so that they would get a good impression, and
1 they would take people to that room to meet with them. It's a small room
2 with some four beds.
3 Q. Do you know which Red Cross would meet people in the room? Was it
4 the local Red Cross or the International Committee of the Red Cross?
5 A. Yes. It was probably the international one. These ladies, the
6 International Red Cross, was looking for us. They learned of us in
7 Zasavica. It's a Catholic village near Crkvina. And they turned that
8 Catholic village into a camp, a typical women camp. However, they called
9 it the collection centre. Many women were registered there. Many women
10 had to go and work in Odzak, in Modrica, go plum-picking, potato digging,
11 and so on.
12 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
13 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honours, something that we heard here in the
14 transcript, on page 76, line 9. It says: "Somebody told me." And we
15 believe that we heard certain name of a person who told him about that.
16 So maybe my colleague can clarify that.
17 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. I'd be grateful to you. Thank you.
18 Q. Who told you that the Red Cross was there in the guard room?
19 A. It was Tihic Pasaga, son of Smail, and Fetisa's [phoen] Son, who
20 will later be killed in the TO building. And there were a few other
21 Muslims who had been arrested there as well.
22 Q. Thank you. And you commented that: "We were presented to them,"
23 that is the Red Cross, "as Serbs, so that they would get a good
24 impression." Can you tell us precisely what you mean by that?
25 A. This is where they slept, the Serbs who guarded us. They slept in
1 that room. And during the day, when this inspection came, they were
2 forewarned that the Red Cross would come. So this is why they put in
3 Mergud [phoen], Pasaga Tihic, and a few other people in there, and made it
4 look as though they slept on those beds. They put up a show for them.
5 Q. Thank you. And these people, Mergud, Pasaga Tihic, and the other
6 people, were they in fact prisoners who were being detained in the TO or
7 the SUP?
8 A. Yes. They were prisoners in the TO.
9 Q. And did they report to you that they had been presented to the
10 ICRC -- the international committee for the Red Cross?
11 A. Yes. They wanted to show that these people looked well, but they
12 were in fact their people, and it was well known.
13 Q. Thank you. Okay. Now, I just want to return to another topic.
14 You've already said that in the SUP no one told you why you had been
15 arrested. Did anyone ever provide you with an explanation as to the
16 reason for your arrest and detention when you were in the TO building or
17 in the two years in which you were held in custody at Batkovici? Was it
18 ever explained to you why you had been arrested and detained?
19 A. No, it was never explained to me; however, I myself knew why I had
20 been arrested, because I was a member of the SDA. People who were members
21 of the HDZ and SDA were arrested. HDZ was the Croatian Democratic Party.
22 SDA is the Party of Democratic Action. So that means that they hindered
23 democracy --
24 Q. Thank you.
25 A. -- unlike in other countries.
1 Q. In the TO building, just going back to the TO building, were you
2 ever interviewed by any officials? Sorry. Not necessarily inside the TO
3 building, but during the period of time in which you were held in custody
4 at the TO, were you ever interviewed by officials?
5 A. Yes. I was interrogated by somebody who was a former misdemeanour
6 judge; his name is Simo Bozic. I was taken there by two people who were
7 imprisoned with me, and he interrogated me there. There was a typist
8 there as well. He asked me about how the SDA armed itself, and so on.
9 Q. I'll just get what I need from you on this episode. First of all,
10 I take it with the typist being there, that what you said was recorded.
11 Am I correct or incorrect?
12 A. Yes, it was recorded.
13 Q. Thank you. Was this interview on or about the 7th of July, 1992?
14 A. Perhaps I'm not very accurate when it comes to the dates. I
15 couldn't be more specific, because they took me to that building several
16 times, to the SUP, which was across, but I can't remember the date. It
17 all took place after the 3rd of July, when they beat me, some four to five
18 days later.
19 Q. Thank you. That's good enough. That's good enough for me.
20 Thanks very much.
21 What was the general theme of the questions?
22 A. About the role of the SDA, about our intentions, and along those
23 lines. I had nothing to tell them regarding that, because these were all
24 public topics.
25 Q. Fine. And on this occasion, did --
1 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Pantelic.
2 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, Your Honour. I completely understand the
3 intention of my learned friend to wind up the proceedings, but just right
4 now, this witness said it was a fact of common knowledge that all
5 parties -- and then he was cut, cut in the explanations by my learned
6 friend. Maybe --
7 JUDGE MUMBA: At what stage was that?
8 MR. PANTELIC: It was just when he was answering in 79,
9 line 9: "All public topics." And then this witness said: "It was a
10 common known fact that all parties ..." and then he tried to explain.
11 Maybe it might be of certain importance for this Trial Chamber to find out
12 what he was -- what was his intention to explain, I mean --
13 JUDGE MUMBA: No, no. You can deal with that in
14 cross-examination, if you think it's important for your case.
15 MR. PANTELIC: I mean, like before, when the witness is trying to
16 explain something, then he should be allowed for that. That was my
17 intention, Your Honour. Of course, we shall have time to clarify that in
18 our cross-examination, but it was just in the midway of his explanation,
19 he was cut by my learned friend.
20 JUDGE MUMBA: I see.
21 MR. PANTELIC: So if --
22 JUDGE MUMBA: That's up to the Prosecution if they think it is
24 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. I'm not minded to go into that.
25 Mr. Pantelic, of course, will be free to explore that in his
2 Q. Thank you. Now, during the course of this interview, did Bozic
3 ever give you any explanation or idea of any charge that you might have
4 been arrested on or any charge that you might be facing?
5 A. No, he didn't say anything to me. I know that others were
6 convicted later on.
7 Q. But what about others?
8 THE INTERPRETER: The witness mentioned a name. The interpreters
9 did not hear it.
10 MR. DI FAZIO:
11 Q. I'm not asking about others, just you. He didn't provide you with
12 any details of that, I take it, of any charge?
13 JUDGE MUMBA: The interpreters are saying a name was mentioned but
14 they didn't get it.
15 MR. DI FAZIO: All right.
16 Q. What was the name that you mentioned, Mr. Bobic?
17 A. I wanted to say that everything was done in a democratic way. I
18 didn't intend to say anything else. Simo Bozic didn't explain anything to
19 me why I was there. He simply made the notes about what I was saying. He
20 asked me about the SDA party, how did the process of our arming go on, how
21 much -- how many firearms we had. I told him we had no firearms, and that
22 was it.
23 Q. Thank you. Now let's go back to --
24 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Excuse me, Mr. Di Fazio. One -- it might be a
25 question of translation, but in the answer, Mr. Bobic's answer on page 81,
1 line 1, where Mr. Bobic says: "I wanted to say that everything was done in
2 a democratic way." I'm just wondering whether that's what he actually
3 said, and if so, what he means.
4 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you. Yes. I'll clarify that.
5 Q. You said in an answer just given a short moment ago that
6 everything was done in a democratic way. What were you trying to say
8 A. Well, everything was democratic. We had three parties: The SDS,
9 the HDZ, and the SDA. These parties were in the old cinema building. We
10 had normal contacts. There were no incidents, and everything went along
11 in a normal way, up until the 16th or 17th. We had democratic processes.
12 We had normal communication. We would sit down and have a drink with each
13 other. Nobody could tell that the war was going to break out. Everything
14 was normal.
15 Q. Thank you. Thank you for clarifying that. Okay.
16 Now let's get back to Batkovici. In the period of time that you
17 were in Batkovici you visited by a man named Stevanovic?
18 A. Yes. Cvijetin Stevanovic, from Loncari, the son of Krsto.
19 MR. DI FAZIO: Can the witness be shown the very last Prosecution
20 Exhibit, P135. Thank you very much. Perhaps it's best if we get both --
21 or just the B/C/S statement, actually, which is P135 ter ID at this stage.
22 THE REGISTRAR: P135?
23 MR. DI FAZIO: 135, the most recent Prosecution Exhibit.
24 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. It was marked today, actually.
25 MR. DI FAZIO: It's ID, marked earlier this morning.
1 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Krgovic.
2 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just something
3 regarding the transcript. The witness said, on page 81, line 17, when he
4 started talking, he said: "Had I known that the war was going to break out
5 in Samac, I would have left Samac." However, this was not recorded in the
6 transcript, so could my learned friend please clarify this.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Everybody tries to flee if
8 there is any danger of something evil.
9 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you. The witness has done the job for me.
10 I'm grateful to you. Now let's look at the document, please, P135 ID.
11 Q. Is that your signature that appears on the document?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And can you tell us of the circumstances under which you signed
14 this power of attorney, please?
15 A. I was in the camp, and I didn't know about things that were going
16 on at the time --
17 Q. Sorry. Before you continue, may I ask that the witness place the
18 document on the ELMO so that the defendants and everyone else can see it?
19 You'll have to read it, if you need, from either the TV screen in front of
20 you or off the document itself, but it has to remain on that device on
21 your right-hand side, Mr. Bobic, so that we can all see it. Thank you.
22 All right. Yes. Now, the circumstances under which you came to
23 sign it, please.
24 A. A man who guarded us, a Serb, called Aleksandar Djuric, came to
25 get me and told me, "Kemal, you have a visitor, and go and wash
1 yourself." So I went and washed myself. And then we went for some 1
2 kilometre to a ramp where Stevanovic, the son of Krsto, was waiting for
3 us. Aco, who was a nice man, told me along the way, "Kemal, sign the
4 document, or otherwise you might perish." I was in the camp. It was a
5 typical camp. So once I got there, he said, "I know this man." And then
6 we greeted each other and he said that he came because he was not allowed
7 to move into my house, and he took out a lot of documents showing the land
8 registry from Samac, and one of the documents was also certified in
9 Bijeljina, and he showed it to us. And he told me that he would move into
10 my house and would watch over my property, and then once I came back and
11 revoked it, it would be given back to me. However, all of my property was
12 sold away. My house had four three-room apartments. There was also a
13 building in the yard. I had two shops on the ground level. They were
14 used for a shop and herbal pharmacy. There was a corridor, a very wide
15 corridor, with a kitchen on both sides, because they were used by us two
17 So in the middle there were vaults, and we would go back and forth
18 from one side of the house to the other. When he moved --
19 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... can I just ask you, though,
20 to concentrate on what actually happened as you were standing on the ramp
21 at the -- in Batkovici, and you signed the document? Let me ask you this:
22 Did you feel that you had any choice as to whether or not you signed the
24 A. No. One's life was worth less than an ashtray in the camp. Had I
25 not signed it, I would have been taken away, and God knows where I would
1 have ended. And then he asked me to read it, and I said that I couldn't
2 see, because we spent our days in the dark in the hangar. And then I
3 asked for a document to be shown to me. And could you give me a copy?
4 And then this is the copy, and I have the original. I took a copy and I
5 gave her ten marks. She didn't ask me that. It wasn't much money. I
6 gave the money to her for coffee, and she told me, "Hold on to this,
7 because these are hard times, but your house will be returned to you."
8 And that's how it was in the end, but unfortunately it was not in proper
10 Q. Thank you. Who was the "she" who you are referring to?
11 A. She was probably a lawyer. I don't know. She came in with the
12 documents. I really don't know, so I can't tell you. But in light of the
13 function that she had, the role that she played, she came with him, then
14 went back to Bijeljina, and returned with the documents. She gave me two
15 documents, in fact. The documents were signed also by the three women, my
16 brother's two daughters and his wife, indicating that the house, the whole
17 house now belonged to him. And let me just tell you about this document.
18 We had a trial in Brcko for this, in this matter, and we won the case. He
19 has to give me 150.000 marks plus the court expenses. I spent about 3.000
20 German marks for the lawyer, Slobodan Zelic ^; a Serb lawyer represented
21 me in that case. Then we were again transferred to Brcko for the second
22 hearing in another case. I also won everything in that case.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 A. It was an inheritance hearing. And then I also went to Samac. I
25 had a legal suit in Samac and I also won. But --
1 Q. I don't want to go into the history of the subsequent court
2 actions regarding the fallout, the consequences of this document. I want
3 to know how it came to be signed. First of all, you've referred to
4 documents signed by three women. This document that you have before you,
5 this document here that's on the ELMO machine, that was only signed by
6 yourself, was it not?
7 A. Yes. I can put this also on the ELMO.
8 Q. No. No. I don't want you to do that. I'm only asking you about
9 this particular document, Witness.
10 A. All right. But just in case you're interested, I also have a copy
11 of this.
12 Q. If Defence counsel want to ask you about it, they now know that
13 it's in your possession there and in your bag. Okay. Thank you.
14 MR. DI FAZIO: I seek to produce the document fully into evidence,
15 if Your Honours please.
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Any objection from the Defence? I see none.
17 Can we confirm the number, please?
18 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honours. It will be P135 and P135 ter.
19 Thank you.
20 MR. DI FAZIO: Just one question. I'll be grateful if you would
21 answer it very, very briefly.
22 Q. You say that you won -- you say that you won subsequent legal
23 actions. Were you, in practical terms, ever able to enforce those
24 judgements in your favour?
25 A. No. Since now it belongs to Bosanski Samac and the court ruled in
1 my favour, but we cannot implement it because various ways are found to
2 avoid it. The man who robbed me, Stevanovic Cvijetin, also has a night
3 bar, nightclub, and we are working on having this nightclub confiscated
4 from him. But we're working on it, and so is, in fact, the chief
5 ombudsman in Sarajevo. He's also involved in the case.
6 Q. Thank you. And I'll return to the question of your property
7 briefly --
8 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Excuse me, Mr. Di Fazio. Just one point, line 10
9 of page 86. Mr. Bobic says: "Since now it belongs to Bosanski Samac."
10 Is that a correct translation of what you said, Mr. Bobic? And if so,
11 what belongs -- what is the "it" that belongs to Bosanski Samac?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Since now, in recent times, before
13 new -- before the New Year's day, Loncari became a part of Bosanski Samac,
14 and he's from there, Loncari or Zabari. And the whole event in which I
15 was robbed took place in Samac, and the Court in Samac had jurisdiction
16 over the case, conducted that case. Milos Savic was the president of the
17 Court in Bosanski Samac. He was the Presiding Judge and he ruled in my
18 favour, but his decision simply cannot be implemented.
19 And Samac is now a part of the Serb Republic. And that is
20 impeding the whole process, and the whole process has lasted for three
21 years now. Can you imagine that? And the decisions cannot be
23 JUDGE WILLIAMS: I'm not certain whether I'm that clear, but
24 perhaps you should move on and --
25 MR. DI FAZIO: I think that's probably --
1 MR. PANTELIC: If I may be of assistance to Her Honour Judge
2 Williams. Well, Your Honour, maybe it's a wrong understanding that this
3 house and the other items belongs now to municipality of Bosanski Samac.
4 In fact, this witness said that his case is now under the jurisdiction of
5 the Court in Samac, which is a part of the judicial system of
6 Republika Srpska and there is a second level in Modrica court, et cetera,
7 et cetera.
8 So it was not the now issue of whether the house and the other
9 property of this witness belongs to municipality, by any way. It's simply
10 a civil affair before the Court in Samac. I don't know if that satisfies
11 Your Honour.
12 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Thank you, Mr. Pantelic.
13 MR. PANTELIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 MR. DI FAZIO: I think I'll prefer to return to this topic after
15 I've had a moment to gather my thoughts about it, because --
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
17 MR. DI FAZIO: I think it would probably be more beneficial if I
18 was able to do that to the Chamber. And although I'm close to finishing
19 this witness's evidence, I don't think that I will finish today. So
20 perhaps, if I may, I may return to this topic very briefly tomorrow, if I
21 think it's necessary, if Your Honours please.
22 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
23 MR. DI FAZIO: So may I now turn to another topic, Mr. Bobic, and
24 that is the question of exchanges.
25 Q. From time to time, were people exchanged from Batkovici?
1 A. Yes, some of them.
2 Q. To bring about this process of exchange, was it necessary to pay
4 A. For some, yes; for others, no. It depended on who you were. The
5 people who were brought in from Manjaca, they were exchanged and they
6 immediately went on to third countries, because they came to pick them up
7 in Batkovici. I know about a case of a man from Kozarac. His brothers
8 came and paid some money for him. He had four brothers there, and they
9 paid money for him and he went to be exchanged. I asked him how much
10 money it was, and he said that he didn't know. A car came to pick him up
11 in the afternoon and he was simply driven away. I don't know who was in
12 charge of that, who dealt with that.
13 Q. Thank you. Did you ever see any of the defendants at Batkovici
14 apparently dealing with exchange issues?
15 A. Yes. There was Mr. Miroslav Tadic. He was in Batkovici. He
16 exchanged Jasenko Suljic and Mario Begic. He drove them away in his car.
17 I can't say whether he took money for that or not, because I wasn't there.
18 I didn't see. And immediately after that, Emin Gibic got out, so did
19 Sabah Seric and Miki Tabakovic [phoen]. They also said that they would be
20 exchanged. Now, I don't know what the reason was why they were able to
21 leave so quickly. I don't know whether they had to give money. I cannot
22 allege that this man took money.
23 Q. Which man?
24 A. Miroslav Tadic. You asked me if anyone came there from the
25 accused, and Miroslav Tadic was there. I know that. And he knows,
1 because he saw me.
2 Q. Okay. Thank you. You were eventually released from -- via an
3 exchange in Sarajevo in 1994. Did you discuss the circumstances of that
4 with your wife?
5 A. Well, it's hard to say. I was in the camp. My wife later told me
6 that she had given I think 12.000 German marks to Miroslav Tadic to be
7 exchanged, and then Mr. Tesic, son of Stjepan, came. He was supposed to
8 come for me. And the exchange never took place in my case. And I don't
9 know whether she did in fact give the money to him or not. I only can go
10 by what she told me.
11 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Excuse me, Mr. Bobic. You mentioned, I believe,
12 one man who was exchanged called Sabah Seric. Is that correct? I'm not
13 sure whether I'm pronouncing his name correctly.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Sabah Seric. You said it
15 quite right.
16 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Thank you. Was he the son of Hasan Seric?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
18 JUDGE WILLIAMS: And would you be able --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The shop owner.
20 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Would you be able to recall when he was
21 exchanged, approximately?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was exchanged the very same day
23 when Begic was driven away. That was the same day when Begic went to be
24 exchanged in Tuzla, Bahrija Begic, and the father-in-law looked for him in
25 Gracanica. Jasan Kosuljic [phoen], he was exchanged in Gracanica. I
1 don't know where the exchanges took place, but that's, I think, where he
2 was exchanged. They didn't go in that direction, the others. I don't
3 know where they went. The people that were to be exchanged, their names
4 were read out and then the doors would be closed.
5 JUDGE WILLIAMS: I'm just interested in knowing whether you can
6 recall the month and the year, if you can. It might be helpful to us.
7 MR. DI FAZIO: Does Your Honour mean --
8 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Of Sabah Seric, son of Hasan, yes.
9 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
10 Q. Can you please answer Her Honour's inquiry?
11 A. I cannot remember the date, really. I know that it was in
12 winter. But there was no snow, but it was not very cold either.
13 Somewhere in between.
14 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Thank you.
15 MR. DI FAZIO:
16 Q. And you know it was in winter. Can you tell us if it was soon
17 after your arrival at Batkovici?
18 A. Yes. We came there together. Seric, myself, Jasenko, Bahrija
19 Begic, we all came from Samac in Batkovici together. And then, in the
20 early evening, the Croats came. They came separately, on another bus.
21 And then the people from Manjaca came, and so on, people from Kotor Vares,
22 Banja Luka, and so on.
23 Q. Yes, but the question is this: You've told us that this Sabah
24 Seric man was exchanged, you've told us it was winter. My question is:
25 Was it soon after you arrived at Batkovici?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 A. It may have been just before the New Year's Day, perhaps around
4 Christmas and somewhere like that.
5 Q. Thank you. All right. Did prisoners discuss amongst themselves
6 ways of bringing about the exchange, their exchange?
7 A. Well, there were the exchanges, and Serbs, when they wanted an
8 exchange to take place, when the two parties agreed about the exchange,
9 the leader that exchanged us living human beings, then they would meet in
10 a location, whether in the Serb territory or on the other side, and then
11 they agree about when the exchange would take place. And then on that
12 date, at that time, they would -- people would be exchanged. Those who
13 were lucky would be exchanged; those who weren't lucky were not exchanged.
14 I was not lucky.
15 Q. Thank you. But the question is simple: Did prisoners, when you
16 were locked up, locked up inside the hangars at Batkovici, discuss among
17 themselves, prisoner to prisoner, how to get out, how to be exchanged,
18 what to do to bring about an exchange? Did you talk about it?
19 A. Well, yes, we did discuss this.
20 Q. Thank you. And was it ever agreed that there was a particular way
21 to bring it about?
22 A. Well, mostly those who had money, they were exchanged.
23 Q. Thank you. Did you ever hear amongst prisoners talking amongst
24 themselves who --
25 A. Yes, but the exchange was always -- the exchange was always the
1 main attraction, the main topic. Everybody wanted to be exchanged,
2 because it was really difficult to be away from your family, from your
3 children. Everybody wanted to leave as soon as possible. Some people
4 stayed there for six months, some for a year, and I stayed there for a
5 whole two years. I spent three winters there: 1992, 1993, and 1994.
6 JUDGE MUMBA: [Previous translation continues] ... being
7 productive, are we?
8 MR. DI FAZIO: No. I'll -- it's now 1.45. I'm going to wrap up
9 this topic tomorrow and the other issue of property tomorrow, and I've
10 just about come to the end of my examination-in-chief.
11 JUDGE MUMBA: How long?
12 MR. DI FAZIO: I would say about 15, 20 minutes.
13 JUDGE MUMBA: All right.
14 MR. DI FAZIO: Possibly even less, but I'll say 20 minutes at this
15 stage just in case things develop, but I hope to be less.
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Very well.
17 MR. DI FAZIO: Is -- there are a number of topics that I think
18 that the Chamber wants me to address them on very briefly, but just
19 regarding the remainder of the week. Do you want me to deal with that now
20 or later, or tomorrow?
21 JUDGE MUMBA: The courtroom is required. I think we can deal with
22 it when we have time, within our allocation of time.
23 MR. DI FAZIO: Certainly. Then, perhaps, I'll do it tomorrow at
24 the conclusion of this witness's evidence. Thank you.
25 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. We shall adjourn now until tomorrow at 0900
2 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.46 p.m., to
3 be reconvened on Thursday, the 25th day of July
4 2002, at 9.00 a.m.