1 Friday, 4 April 2003
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
6 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, good morning. Please call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning. Case number IT-95-9-T, the
8 Prosecutor versus Blagoje Simic, Miroslav Tadic and Simo Zaric.
9 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. We are starting. Can the usher assist the
11 Please make the solemn declaration.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
13 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 WITNESS: STOKO SEKULIC
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Thank you. Please sit down.
17 Yes, Mr. Lazarevic.
18 MR. LAZAREVIC: Good morning, Your Honours.
19 Examined by Mr. Lazarevic:
20 Q. Good morning, Mr. Sekulic. [Interpretation] First of all,
21 Mr. Sekulic, can you tell me whether you hear me well? Are your
22 headphones working?
23 A. Yes, I can hear you well.
24 Q. Yesterday, we were discussing your testimony here and let me
25 remind you that you should pause for a second after I have finished
1 putting my question and then answer so that there would be no overlapping
2 and that the interpreters could do their job well. Could you now state
3 your full name for the record?
4 A. Do I have to get up?
5 Q. No, no. You can sit down freely while you're giving testimony.
6 A. My name is Stoko Sekulic. I was born on the 25th of October,
7 1947, in the village Bukovik in the municipality of Brcko. I now reside
8 in Samac, General Draza Street, 32.
9 Q. Can you tell me now what is your profession?
10 A. I am currently retired but I worked in the Public Security Service
11 until 1990. I was in Orasje. I started out, that is to say, as a police
12 officer and I was the chief of the Orasje police station when I retired.
13 Q. Thank you very much. When you say public security station, you
14 mean the police?
15 A. Yes. Now it is the police. The police station.
16 Q. Can you tell me, is Orasje a municipality neighbouring the
17 municipality of Samac?
18 A. Yes. It is some 20 kilometres away from the Bosanski Samac
20 Q. Thank you. Did you serve in the Yugoslav People's Army?
21 A. I served the Yugoslav People's Army in 1966, 1967. I was in the
22 school for reserve officers traffic specialty unit.
23 Q. Can you tell me, are you married?
24 A. Yes, I'm married with two children.
25 Q. Sir, I was informed that your rank did not enter the record, when
1 you said that you completed the reserve military officers school and you
2 graduated with the rank of...?
3 A. A second lieutenant, when I finished the military service, and
4 completed the school, I ended up as the junior lieutenant and that is in
5 the traffic specialty unit.
6 Q. Can you tell me what is your ethnicity?
7 A. I'm a Serb.
8 Q. Can you tell me now whether you were a member of a political
9 party? Are you a member of a political party now?
10 A. I was a member of the League of Communists since -- I have been
11 since 1962. This was up until the war, and then ever since the war
12 period, I haven't been a member of any political party.
13 Q. Thank you. Sir, before the outbreak of the hostilities in
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, can you tell us where you resided?
15 A. As I've already said, since 1981, I was in the Public Security
16 Service I lived in Orasje up to 1990. I continued living there. I had a
17 socially owned flat and in 1992 on the 8th of March, I left Orasje and
18 went to Bac where I remained until the 13th [as interpreted] of April,
19 1992, when I went to Bosanski Samac or to be precise, to Obudovac, because
20 my wife is from Obudovac, she has a house there and her parents have a
21 house and that is where I started -- residing.
22 Q. Let me just clarify. What was the reason for your departure from
23 Orasje to Bac?
24 A. I left Orasje for Bac because I had a colleague who needed a
25 worker to drive his truck and that is what I did. I worked until the 13th
1 [as interpreted] of April in Bac and I was staying at the hotel central in
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: We have one correction for the transcript. The
4 witness was always referring to the 30th of April and here we see 13th of
5 April on page 3, line --
6 A. 30th of April.
7 MR. LAZAREVIC: And also on page 4, line 18.
8 JUDGE MUMBA: What is the correct date?
9 MR. LAZAREVIC: The 30th --
10 JUDGE MUMBA: 30th.
11 MR. LAZAREVIC: Of April, 3-0.
12 JUDGE MUMBA: That will be corrected. 1992. Yes.
13 MR. LAZAREVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Can you tell me where is Bac situated in relation to Bosanski
15 Samac, in relation to Orasje?
16 A. Well, it is -- it was situated in the then Yugoslavia. Bac is a
17 larger town. It is close to Banatska Palanka.
18 Q. It is in Serbia, isn't it?
19 A. Yes in Vojvodina, the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina.
20 Q. Thank you. Sir, let us talk now about a specific date, the 16th
21 and 17th of April, 1992. Can you tell us where exactly were you at the
23 A. On the 16th and 17th of April, I was in Bac because I was there
24 until the 30th of April.
25 Q. You were not in Bosanski Samac?
1 A. No.
2 Q. Can you tell us how did it come about that you started working in
3 the police station in Bosanski Samac?
4 A. As I've already said, on the 30th of April, I arrived in Obudovac
5 and the following day, that is on the 1st of May of 1992, I went to the
6 department for Defence which is where I found someone, I'm not sure if his
7 name is Bogdanovic, Milos, but because I hadn't been living there before
8 he was the head of the Defence department, and so I reported there. I
9 actually wanted to register myself because I had arrived from a different
10 municipality to the municipality of Bosanski Samac, and then Milos
11 referred me to the police station, which was at the time called Bosanski
12 Samac police station.
13 Q. Thank you. So where was it exactly that you reported to the
14 police station?
15 A. On the 1st of May, 1992, around noon, 1.00 p.m., I'm not definite
16 about it.
17 Q. Can you tell me who you reported to in the police station?
18 A. In the police station, I reported to Mr. Stevan Todorovic, who was
19 then Chief of Police in Samac.
20 Q. In the period between 1st of May, 1992, onwards, when you met
21 Stevan Todorovic, which tasks were you assigned to?
22 A. I was assigned to the duties of a police officer or a militia
23 worker as it was called at the time, and it was immediately on the 1st of
24 May that I was referred to the Defence line in Grebnica. This was the
25 village of Grebnica where the Defence line was at the time.
1 Q. To define all the duties that you discharged in the police, one of
2 these duties was then to go to the Defence line with the other policemen
3 to hold the line there in Grebnica. Can you tell us which were the other
4 tasks you discharged during your service for the police?
5 A. While I was working for the police, when I arrived to this
6 particular municipality, I would also provide security for the post
7 office, for instance, for the social company of Master [Realtime
8 transcript read in error "Matter"], of waterworks and a high school as
9 well, where some people were kept in isolation.
10 Q. Thank you. I will just put two more brief questions to you.
11 MR. LAZAREVIC: A small correction in the transcript, on page 6,
12 line 4, company is Master. We already referred to this company in these
14 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
15 MR. LAZAREVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Sir, did you ever provide security for the building of the
17 Territorial Defence?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Did you ever provide security for the gym hall of the elementary
20 school in Samac?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Therefore, you worked providing security for the high school only
23 for two days?
24 A. Well, yes, two shifts.
25 Q. Thank you. While discharging these duties, did you ever take part
1 in the -- in arresting people and bringing them over to the police
3 A. I did not take part in the process of taking people into custody
4 in the police station, not me personally.
5 Q. Another question in regard to this: Did you ever take part in the
6 searching of flats of certain persons in Bosanski Samac?
7 A. No.
8 Q. Tell us, these duties that you mentioned, were they -- did they
9 require you to stay in the police station building or did they actually
10 require you to spend most of the time outside the building?
11 A. Well, most of the time I was outside the building and most of the
12 time I actually spent on the Defence line.
13 Q. Sir, tell me, at one point you became deputy commander of the
14 police station. Can you tell me when this happened and how come?
15 A. On the 3rd of August, in the morning, I came from the area of
16 Grebnica to Samac, and I was sleeping in the hotel upstairs, and some
17 offices and a colleague was there too. I had come from the shift around
18 6.20 and I just washed up a bit and went to bed and soon after that,
19 Slobodan Jovanovic, a police officer, came and told me to report to the
20 Chief of Police, the chief of SUP, at his office. I got up, got ready,
21 went to the chief and then the chief told me that he's appointing me the
22 deputy commander of the police station in Samac.
23 Q. Just a moment, please. Can I ask you one question and then we can
24 move on. Before you, who was deputy commander at the police station,
25 before you got this position?
1 A. Before me, it was Mr. Milan Jekic.
2 Q. Thank you. Could you please continue now? So you came to the
3 Chief of Police and what did he say to you and what did you say?
4 A. I've already mentioned that the chief said that he was appointing
5 me deputy commander of the police station in Samac and I refused that. I
6 refused that because I thought that there were people who were from that
7 area, from that town. I did not know the area. I did not know Samac. I
8 never worked there. But he kept on insisting, and finally, I stayed there
9 until 9.00 and then went back to the hotel to get some more sleep and then
10 around 12.00, Slobodan Jovanovic came again, and then again I went to the
11 department store to the office of the Chief of Police, which is where he
12 told me that I had to accept this position because Mr. Jekic no longer
13 wanted to do that work, and then I accepted the job. I accepted it for
14 the following reasons. Well, how can I put this? I was sort of afraid of
15 some individuals because during my work, I saw that there were people who
16 had come from Serbia and we were not or rather I was not in any kind of
17 close relations with them and I sort of avoided them and then I accepted
18 this ultimately. I was afraid for my own sake. I accepted this.
19 Immediately, I spoke to Mr. Todorovic, the Chief of Police, about certain
20 matters because I said that I would accept the job on the condition that
21 the law on the interior is applied and according to the rules of service
22 of the security services, and also, the by-laws, all the other by-laws
23 that were relevant to the MUP of Republika Srpska at the time.
24 Q. Thank you very much, sir. Until now, it was not contested before
25 this Tribunal that there was a rather large number of people who were
1 detained at the TO and at the SUP building and that the conditions under
2 which they were detained were rather poor. Can you tell us about your
3 experience? What the conditions were, the detention conditions of those
4 people who were at the TO and at the SUP, who were detained there at the
6 A. As a public security official, I mean I worked there from 1981 and
7 I knew what the conditions were supposed to be in prisons generally
8 speaking if we are talking about prisons but in this case, this was
9 isolation. These conditions were really bad. But they were not so bad
10 because somebody wanted them to be that bad. It was simply due to the
11 prevalent material conditions at the time. Better conditions could not be
12 provided. When I came, I agreed with the Chief of Police that -- and he
13 actually told me that I should do my best, and that I should do as I see
14 fit, and I said that I think that the law on the interior should be
15 applied and the rules of service and public security and the relevant
16 by-laws and I saw that these people who had already been isolated there, I
17 saw that they were not taking baths, that they were not changing their
18 clothes, and I agreed then with Slobodan Jovanovic, who at that time was
19 working in finance, well, perhaps this is primitive but this is what the
20 situation was and there was no other way of working then because there
21 wasn't even electricity or water then. Any way, we prepared the
22 following. I mean, in these facilities, there weren't any bathrooms or
23 anything, so we organised some taps there, we needed tap water for these
24 people. It was summertime so these people could at least take baths once
25 a week but twice a week we allowed the families of these people to bring
1 them a change of clothes. So personal hygiene could be maintained at
2 least up to a degree, as far as these people were concerned. I mean
3 within the scope of our possibilities, you see.
4 Q. Thank you, sir. Thank you, Mr. Sekulic. Could you just speak a
5 bit slower? Everything should be recorded the way you have put it and it
6 needs to be interpreted. Did you have any problems with these specials
7 from Serbia, these volunteers?
8 A. Well, let me tell you, since I did not even meet these people when
9 they came, I don't even know when they came but then when I came I had
10 some problems quite specific problems with Lugar, I don't know, I don't
11 know what his real name is. I didn't really have any problems with others
12 within the service.
13 Q. Sir, now I am just going to put a few more questions to you. You
14 know Simo Zaric, don't you?
15 A. No, I know Simo Zaric from before. He worked in the public
16 security while I worked there too.
17 Q. When you worked at the police station from the 1st of May onwards,
18 while you were employed in the Public Security Service, did you ever see
19 Simo Zaric at the police station?
20 A. Well, I'm telling you now from the 1st of May, 1992, until the end
21 of the war, I saw Simo Zaric perhaps two or three times in Samac, in town,
22 in passing, I never saw him at the police station itself.
23 Q. Tell me, was Simo Zaric perhaps a member of the police?
24 A. From the 1st of May, I never saw him as one over there. I mean,
25 from the 1st of May onwards, no. I don't know about before the 1st of
2 Q. Just a few more questions that have to do with the arrival of the
3 International Red Cross in Samac and their visit to detainees. Tell me,
4 did the International Red Cross come to visit detainees in Bosanski Samac?
5 A. Well, this is the way it was. I cannot remember the date but I
6 can say that this is the period either -- well, I don't know, from the end
7 of August, the end of August, the beginning of September, or the end of
8 September, and the beginning of November [as interpreted].
9 Well, any way, a delegation came consisting of two members, and
10 there was a third person, an interpreter. There was a man there, I can
11 describe him because in my diary, I wrote it down, I haven't got that
12 diary any more, the man was about 28, the woman was about 20 and then
13 there was the interpreter too, and they came to my office, we had a cup of
14 coffee, we went out. I cannot give you the time now. I can -- a shell
15 came from the area of Croatia. It hit a garage. It killed Vukovic. I
16 think his name was Vukovic. He was in isolation and he was sitting in
17 front and drinking coffee and this shell killed him. So then when they
18 got out of the office, we went to the garage, we were right there in front
19 of the garage where that happened so they saw that and then we went back
20 to the building and then we went to the TO staff where people were in
21 isolation. They probably intended to talk. I mean they saw the
22 conditions under which these people lived. They wanted to see the rooms
23 where these people were isolated. However, we didn't cross the street
24 halfway when the shelling started. These three members of the delegation,
25 they lay on the pavement but I just remained standing because this was not
1 the first time the shells started falling on Orasje, no not Orasje, Samac,
2 and then after that, they got up and then this member of this delegation
3 asked me, what's this? And I said, "Our brothers have sent us a present.
4 A present from the Republic of Croatia." And then he asked me whether
5 this was a frequent occurrence and I said a frequent occurrence indeed,
6 almost every day -- every night, there were shells falling all over Samac
7 and then we went to the TO staff where people were put up, people who were
8 in isolation. They just went through the premises, they saw what they
9 looked like and then they got out and they did not return to my office,
10 they immediately went into the land rover which had a sign of the Red
11 Cross on and then they left in a direction unknown to me.
12 Well, I'm not sure. As for the local authorities, whether
13 Mr. Milan Simic was with them. I think that he came with them.
14 Q. Thank you very much. Sir, now I am interested in Simo Zaric
15 specifically. When the members, the representatives of the International
16 Red Cross were present, was Mr. Zaric ever present there together with
17 you, or did you perhaps see him on his own?
18 A. Simo was never there with me. When I spoke a while ago, I said
19 that I never saw Simo Zaric, not at all, in the building or at the TO
20 staff. I saw Simo Zaric in the street. I've already said that. Perhaps
21 two or three times during the course of the war.
22 Q. Just tell me how long you stayed at the police in Bosanski Samac?
23 A. Until the 31st of August, 1997.
24 MR. LAZAREVIC: I have no further questions for the witness.
25 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. Any other questions from counsel? The
1 Prosecution, cross-examination?
2 Cross-examined by Mr. Weiner:
3 Q. Good morning, Mr. Sekulic, my name is Phillip Weiner. I'm with
4 the Office of the Prosecutor. I'm going to ask you some questions this
5 morning. Now, sir, you said that the conditions were really bad at the
6 police station and you said it was due to the prevalent conditions this
7 morning. The prevalent conditions in the town, the bombing the lack of
8 water, the lack of electricity, isn't that correct? That's what you
9 testified this morning.
10 A. Correct.
11 Q. However, sir, the beatings, the rape of prisoners, the murders
12 that occurred there, those weren't the result of the prevalent conditions
13 in the town, were they?
14 A. Well, probably not, but I did not see that. I'm not aware of
15 that. I really did not see that.
16 Q. It is uncontested in this case that torture -- that prisoners were
17 tortured, beaten on a daily basis, that they had their teeth extracted at
18 the police station and across the street at the TO. Those were not the
19 result of the prevalent conditions in the town, the lack of water, the
20 shelling, the poor electricity. Those incidents could not be the result
21 of the prevalent conditions in the town.
22 A. Of course they could not, but I could just say that from the 3rd
23 of August onwards, the 3rd of August, 1992, that there were no more such
24 cases. Certainly not.
25 Q. That was very kind of you but prior to your being named the
1 deputy, the conditions there were very poor. In fact, your supervisor
2 or police chief was Stevan Todorovic, isn't that correct, sir?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And you're aware that Stevan Todorovic has pled guilty to the
5 persecution of the non-Serb civilians in Bosanski Samac. Are you aware of
6 that, sir?
7 A. I'm aware of some of the things I read about in the newspapers,
8 the newspapers.
9 Q. And sir, were you aware that Stevan Todorovic has admitted to the
10 cruel and inhumane treatment of the non-Serb civilians including confining
11 them in inhumane conditions at the TO, the Territorial Defence building,
12 the police station, the primary school and the secondary school? Are you
13 aware of that?
14 A. I have already said here that for the most part, I was in the
15 field and dealing with facilities. I just read about this in the
16 newspapers. I read about Stevan et cetera. I never heard of anybody
17 mistreating anybody. You've just referred to teeth extraction. I never
18 heard [as interpreted] of any such thing.
19 Q. So you weren't aware that prior to your coming there and after
20 your coming there, to Bosanski Samac, almost 200 teeth were extracted from
21 prisoners at the TO, at the SUP, and at the primary school? You weren't
22 aware of that, sir?
23 MR. LAZAREVIC: Before the witness answers, there is one just
24 small correction for the transcript. Maybe it would explain. When the
25 witness was answering to Prosecutor questions on page 14, line 14 and 15,
1 he said I never saw of any of such things, not I never heard.
2 JUDGE MUMBA: Oh, yes.
3 MR. WEINER: No, I'm not blaming you for those, sir, I'm not
4 blaming you.
5 JUDGE MUMBA: You can ask him to clarify because he's the witness.
6 MR. WEINER:
7 Q. Your testimony is that you never saw these things occur in your
8 presence, isn't that correct?
9 A. Well, yes, I did not see that and this did not happen in my
10 presence. Now what I heard was something different. It's different if
11 you experience something and see something and it's different if you hear
12 about it.
13 Q. Thank you. But you do admit that the conditions were poor during
14 the summer of 1992 at the TO? I'm sorry, at the police station.
15 A. Well, I admit because since I worked there I know what kind of
16 conditions existed in prisons. I was even aware of some excerpts from the
17 Geneva Conventions, as far as prisoners are concerned. That is why I took
18 the kind of action that I took and as I said, to improve personal hygiene,
19 whatever the social political community can do, improve the food a bit.
20 The food was the way it was, depending on the conditions that prevailed in
21 the social political community. The army did not have better food, any
22 food that was better than what the detainees had.
23 Q. But did you examine at the primary school the portions that they
24 were receiving? The portions of food at the primary school.
25 A. The food for the primary school and for the TO staff was the same,
1 two meals during the course of the day. I saw that when it was brought
2 from Tekstilac. Food was brought from Tekstilac, from this one kitchen
3 where we all got our meals from. We all had our meals at Tekstilac.
4 Q. Did you see them distributing the food to the prisoners at the TO?
5 And at the primary school? Because those people have testified and it's
6 been uncontested in this case that they were only receiving one meal a
8 A. I know that two meals were taken, when I came, two meals were
9 taken from Tekstilac. I saw that for sure. They put it in the
10 appropriate dishes and took it to the TO staff and to the school et
12 MR. LAZAREVIC: [Previous interpretation continues] ...
13 questioning but if we could have a time frame for this maybe it would
14 assist in that way we would be fair to the witness, whether it was prior,
15 he became assistant commander or after that.
16 MR. WEINER:
17 Q. During the spring, plus June and July, the testimony here has been
18 uncontested that the prisoners were receiving one meal a day for a short
19 time in April they received two. But they were only receiving one meal a
20 day. Now, sir, they might have been receiving it at the facility, two
21 meals, but the prisoners, the testimony has been that the prisoners
22 themselves only received one meal. Were you present when two meals were
23 given to each prisoner at the Territorial Defence building, or the primary
24 school? Or the police station?
25 A. Look, I have to make a reservation here. For instance, I know
1 well that I was sitting at the high school centre. There was a weeping
2 willow there and there were employees of the police whom I knew, like
3 Filip, Marko, head of the criminal investigations section, and I can't
4 remember all the names of the people I knew. Any way, my father-in-law
5 and my wife came and brought me food. I shared it with them, and on that
6 occasion, I heard from Filip, it was in the month of May, that they were
7 receiving two meals. I never saw it with my own eyes. I wasn't the
8 quartermaster, I didn't go to the Tekstilac company to bring the food back
9 to this facility.
10 Q. All right. Thank you, sir. Let's move on a little bit. You
11 indicated that when you first joined the police department they sent you
12 to the front lines?
13 A. Yes. Right on the 1st of May, in the evening, I was already at
14 Grebnica, because we were holding the defence line there. We were one
15 platoon of the police holding one stretch of that line.
16 Q. Okay?
17 A. From the side of Orasje and Domaljevac.
18 Q. Thank you, sir. Now, you said you were one platoon of police
19 officers. How many police officers constitute one platoon, sir?
20 A. Up to 30 police, 28 to 30 policemen.
21 Q. Thank you. And were there military -- members of the military, or
22 JNA, also there?
23 A. Well, this police platoon, I have to go back to the name of
24 militia because in 1992 it was called the militia, not the police. This
25 militia platoon was under the authority of what I think was called the 5th
1 Battalion, and we were carrying out the defence tasks given us by the
3 Q. When you say 5th Battalion, are you referring to the JNA's 4th
4 Detachment which was the detachment in Samac? Is that what you're
5 referring to? Or was this --
6 A. Well, this 4th Detachment had grown into the 5th Battalion. I
7 must say I don't know much about this but I think it was later called the
8 5th Battalion.
9 Q. Okay. And this was -- you indicated you were under the direction
10 of this 5th Battalion and that's part of the JNA, isn't that correct? And
11 then later became part of the Army of Republika Srpska?
12 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honours, I believe that this might lead this
13 witness to some misconclusions because 5th Battalion was a battalion of
14 the Army of Republika Srpska so just let's not make things that it was at
15 any point the 5th Battalion was a part of JNA.
16 MR. WEINER: However, Your Honour, on May 1, there was no Army of
17 Republika Srpska. So he has to be talking -- whatever unit he's talking
18 about he has to be talking about a JNA unit that was later converted into
19 the Army of Republika Srpska.
20 JUDGE MUMBA: The witness should know what he's talking about. So
21 if he doesn't understand or doesn't know anything, he should say so, so
22 he's able to answer the questions.
23 MR. WEINER:
24 Q. Sir, was this battalion part of the military whether it was the
25 JNA or the Army of Republika Srpska? Was it part of the military?
1 A. Well, yes. It was part of the army and I can't remember the exact
2 date now when it got the name of the Army of Republika Srpska. I really
3 can't remember the date because I wasn't serving in the army at the time.
4 I was serving in the militia, and I believe that this 5th Battalion or the
5 4th Detachment, as it was called at the beginning, at the beginning of the
6 war, I mentioned the 5th Battalion because that's what stuck in my mind
7 when I was leaving for those defence lines, at that time it was already
8 called the 5th Battalion.
9 Q. All right. No problem. It's 11 years ago so, almost 11 years ago
10 so I understand you might not always be sure of the exact names or dates.
11 Now, you indicate, sir -- let's move on because we have very limited time,
12 our cross-examination has been restricted in time today so I want to get
13 to one more subject, sir. You indicated that you became the deputy
14 commander on or about August 3rd, 1992 and that sometime after that you
15 were visited by the Red Cross on two or three occasions and this is the
16 International Red Cross, you met with them on two or through occasions?
17 A. No. I only once met with the delegation of the International Red
18 Cross, only once, and I told you about that day. I don't know the exact
19 date or time when they visited but it was only that one time, as I said
20 before. On that day, as I mentioned, there was shelling, and maybe that
21 delegation would have stayed longer had it not been for the shelling. As
22 it was, they just passed through briefly, viewed the conditions and left.
23 They were probably afraid of the shelling and couldn't wait to get out of
24 that hell.
25 Q. Were you aware that the Red Cross had come on some other occasions
1 that you had not met them, when you had not met them, at the police
3 A. I wasn't aware because nobody informed me. Who was I to be
4 informed that a delegation of the International Red Cross was coming.
5 Q. On that one occasion you met them. Let's go through that
6 incident. You don't recall the exact date. You know it is in some period
7 in the fall of 1992?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And you're not aware of the exact time that they came to Samac?
10 A. I don't know. Well, I've told you before, I mentioned three
11 possibilities, beginning of August, end of September, or beginning of
12 October. I can't decide exactly.
13 Q. I understand that. I'm saying you're not aware of the exact time.
14 You can't say that they came at 10.00 or 10.30 or 11.15, you're not aware
15 of the exact date and you're not aware of the exact time.
16 A. I know about that. It was not at 10.00 or even 12.00. This was
17 in the afternoon. It could only have been after 1.00 p.m. when they came
18 to my office with Mr. Milan Simic.
19 Q. Okay. And you don't know the names of the person who came to
20 visit you?
21 A. At that time, I had my agenda and I wrote down the name of the man
22 and the name of the interpreter and I could even describe them now. He
23 was about 28 years old, he was about 180 centimetres tall, but I can't
24 tell you now his name, 11 years passed since. I don't remember what I had
25 for lunch yesterday let alone this man's name.
1 Q. And that's right. You don't have your diary any more, you have no
2 records, you have no documents, so you're basically going off of your
3 memory at this point. It's 11 years since this incident has happened.
4 A. Yes. I'm only relying on my memory. I have no records. I used
5 to have that agenda but I don't have it any more and I can't really know
6 who visited. I don't remember the names of the people or the interpreter
7 and the second member of the delegation who was a woman. How am I
8 supposed to remember? It was 11 years ago.
9 Q. Now, sir, prior to that, had you been inside the TO facility, the
10 TO, the warehouses, the yard, and gone through the whole area? Prior to
11 that visit?
12 A. Well, yes. I passed through, I told you before, and when I
13 assumed my duties of deputy commander, when I first came into the
14 premises, I saw that it was awfully dirty, hygiene was very poor, I
15 realised something had to be done, and something was done, to the extent
16 of our possibilities. That means cleaning the rooms, airing the rooms,
17 providing change of clothes for the people. I saw what could be done to
18 redress the situation and that was done.
19 Q. Thank you. When the Red Cross came they stayed only a short time
20 because of the bombing, isn't that correct? The shelling. They stayed a
21 very short time, isn't that correct?
22 A. Well, they only passed through the rooms, and I'm telling you my
23 opinion now. It is not necessarily true, only the head of that delegation
24 could tell you for sure. They only passed through, viewed the rooms where
25 the people were isolated, and went straight out. They said goodbye to me
1 got into their land rover and went off, I don't know where. In terms of
2 time, it wasn't more than two or three minutes they spent viewing the
3 rooms before they got into their car and left.
4 Q. Now, sir, you indicated that they went into the staff building.
5 That's the first building in the TO, they walked right into that first
6 building or office. Did they go into the courtyard? Did they go into the
7 warehouse, the rooms inside of the warehouse? Did they also visit those?
8 First, were you with them? Did you accompany them into those rooms?
9 A. I already told you I was with them the whole time from the time
10 they came into my office, and we went together to the SUP and came back,
11 when this shelling happened, from the street, you go directly into the TO
12 headquarters, TO staff building, and it was within the compound of the SUP
13 that they saw the barrels in which people took baths, and after that they
14 went to the warehouse. As far as I know it is still a warehouse. It was
15 in that warehouse that those pallets were where people lay. They spent
16 altogether two or three minutes there, not more.
17 Q. Okay, and sir you have no records at this point in relation to
18 that day, you have no diary, no records in relation to that incident,
19 isn't that correct, in relation to that visit?
20 MR. LAZAREVIC: I believe we already have the answer to this
21 question. It was -- I mean, I see no reason why asking two times the very
22 same question.
23 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Weiner.
24 MR. LAZAREVIC: Time frame for the Prosecution.
25 JUDGE MUMBA: The witness has already explained.
1 MR. WEINER:
2 Q. Now, sir, you indicated that prisoners were isolated at the high
3 school, isn't that correct? You testified today that prisoners were
4 isolated, that people were isolated at the high school when you first
5 arrived sometime in May. You visited the high school and saw people there
6 that were isolated. And sir, the people that were isolated, do you know
7 of what ethnic group they belonged to?
8 A. I know they were both Croats and Muslims and I just told you there
9 were colleagues with whom I used to sit down for a drink. We were
10 colleagues even before the war. We had known each other. And I mentioned
11 this occasion when my father-in-law and my wife came bringing me food and
12 I shared it with them under that weeping willow. Whenever I had
13 cigarettes, I shared them. I treated them as human beings, just as they
14 treated me.
15 Q. Okay. And the people that were isolated at the Territorial
16 Defence building, those were also Muslims and Croats, isn't that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And the people that were isolated at the primary school or held at
19 the primary school, those were also Muslims and Croats, isn't that
21 A. Well, in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, in the Balkans,
22 you had those unfortunate isolation centres, and of course people were
23 taken into custody for certain reasons, such as for the purpose of
24 conducting so-called informative interviews, and it was the same in all
25 areas of the former Yugoslavia whether populated by Muslims, Croats or
1 Serbs, wherever the army held --
2 Q. Sir but the people in Bosanski Samac that were isolated or being
3 held, those as you called them, those unfortunate -- in those unfortunate
4 isolation centres, those were Muslims and Croats, isn't that correct?
5 A. Well, we all know that, that they were Croats and Muslims.
6 MR. WEINER: Thank you, no further questions. Thank you, Your
8 JUDGE MUMBA: Re-examination?
9 MR. LAZAREVIC: Just one very brief matter.
10 Re-examined by Mr. Lazarevic:
11 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Sekulic, you said during your testimony and
12 this was later picked up by the Prosecutor, namely that your platoon was
13 sent to Grebnica to hold the line there. Do you remember the Prosecutor
14 asking you that? Do you remember?
15 A. Yes. I remember.
16 Q. Now, tell me, you said that while you were there, holding the
17 defence line, you were under the command of the army; isn't that right?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. When you came back to Bosanski Samac after those military
20 operations, under whose command would you then be?
21 A. Whenever we came back to Samac, we went back to our work under the
22 command of the MUP, that is our chief of the police.
23 Questioned by the Court:
24 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Yes, good morning, Mr. Sekulic. I just have a
25 couple of questions for you concerning the visit that you've been
1 discussing of the International Committee of the Red Cross to Samac. What
2 I would like to know was whether the International Committee of the Red
3 Cross delegation, these two people that you mentioned, whether they asked
4 you when they were having coffee in your office whether they could talk to
5 any of the detained persons in either the SUP or the TO or the schools.
6 A. They absolutely never asked me to have an interview with anyone.
7 If they had asked for it, I would have made sure they could do it, because
8 as soon as we went off to the TO staff, I thought we were going there in
9 order for them to talk to people who were in isolation. And I really
10 thought about that day when this shelling happened that they had lost
11 their nerve and they couldn't wait to get out. So no, the answer is no,
12 nobody asked me about that, and I did think they might want to talk to the
13 people who were in isolation, yes.
14 JUDGE WILLIAMS: The second question is: At the TO, you say they
15 went to the warehouse. I'm interested to know whether the cells which
16 were those little garages in the yard, whether it was pointed out to them
17 that persons were kept in those small set of garages, and so whether they
18 knew and whether they wanted to go and look inside. Maybe you could just
19 say a few words on that.
20 A. I don't know the extent that you know about these small garages
21 but I do claim that in the TO building, these were large garages and there
22 was a warehouse, the warehouse was also pretty large, and people slept on
23 the pallets and they had blankets to the extent that they had, and there
24 was also the attic, and this was all very easily accessible. It was
25 large. These were no small garages. These were large rooms. The only
1 thing was that they housed a large number of people with the blankets on
2 the pallets.
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: Perhaps I can be of some assistance. The garages
4 were in the yard of the SUP, not in the TO.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As I have --
6 MR. WEINER: There were also garages at the TO, in the courtyard,
8 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Okay. The last questions are very short. I'm
9 just wondering whether they had the opportunity to see any of the food
10 that was to be distributed to the detained persons, and also whether they
11 asked anything about the meals.
12 A. The -- this particular gentleman and the lady who was with him,
13 they did not ask me about the food at all, at least I wasn't asked about
14 the food. They were with the representatives of the local authorities,
15 they were probably taken into the kitchens where the food was being
16 prepared but this is something I know nothing of.
17 JUDGE WILLIAMS: And lastly, when they did tour the premises of
18 the SUP and the TO, were they taken to see the toilet and shower
19 facilities for the detained persons?
20 A. They were able to see the showers because the showers were on the
21 roof [as interpreted], they were exposed to the sun, in order for the
22 water to be heated. This is what they saw. There was one toilet there
23 which they saw, over there in the building, and I'm sure that they did see
24 that. I know that.
25 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Thank you.
1 MR. LAZAREVIC: And just one small correction. It was
2 misinterpreted here. Here it says on page 26, line 18, that the showers
3 were on the roof, and this is actually not what the witness said. They
4 were not on the roof. They were in the yards, in the circle, the way he
6 JUDGE MUMBA: M'hm.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was in the compound of the yard,
8 in the yard itself.
9 JUDGE MUMBA: Very well. Thank you very much, Mr. Sekulic. We
10 are finished with your evidence. You may leave the courtroom.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
12 [The witness withdrew]
13 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please?
14 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
15 MR. DI FAZIO: Before the next witness is brought in, I believe
16 Mr. Arnautovic, there is just a very brief matter I need to raise with you
17 concerning that witness. Late yesterday afternoon, the Prosecution
18 received the search materials relating to this witness. Last night, as I
19 was preparing for this witness, I came across a statement that this
20 witness has made to the OTP. I notified the Defence this morning of the
21 existence of that statement. I'm happy to say that the statement was
22 disclosed on the 23rd of November, 1999. The statement is in English.
23 I've got copies of the statement here and I'm prepared obviously prepared
24 to provide that to the Defence. They haven't yet had an opportunity to
25 read the statement or take any instructions that they might want to take
1 from the witness or raise issues with the witness that are contained in
2 the statement. I don't know, of course, if I'm going to use the statement
3 in cross-examination or not. It may be that I won't have to use it. I
4 don't know. I can't predict, as I don't have any sort of summary of what
5 the witness is going to say. But just as a matter of courtesy to the
6 Defence I thought I ought -- and to the bench, I ought to raise this with
7 you and as far as the Prosecution is concerned, I'm in a position now to
8 hand copies of the statement to Defence counsel and the Prosecution would
9 not oppose a short adjournment if they need it to raise with the next
10 witness any matters contained in that statement.
11 JUDGE MUMBA: I'm surprised that the Prosecution doesn't have a
12 summary of what this witness is going to discuss because the summaries
13 were filed --
14 MR. DI FAZIO: There is what I've seen is about four lines. I
15 know the topic that the witness is going to talk about.
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, yes.
17 MR. DI FAZIO: The 18th or something but I don't actually have
18 a -- I can make an educated guess as to what he's going to say.
19 JUDGE MUMBA: No these summaries were filed in November last year
20 and these are the witnesses which the Trial Chamber moved from depositions
21 and he's supposed to discuss the collection of weaponry in Pere Bosica
22 Street, the isolated incident involving Mr. Zaric.
23 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.
24 JUDGE MUMBA: On the 18th of April, 1992.
25 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.
1 JUDGE MUMBA: In front of Esad and Safet Dagovic's house mentioned
2 as neighbour. This is dealing with paragraph 15 of the indictment, and
3 he's scheduled to give evidence in half an hour.
4 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, yes. I've got no complaint with the witness
5 coming right in now. All I'm say something is I've got this statement and
6 I believe that the Defence have not seen it and all I'm saying is that I'm
7 just letting all the parties the Chamber become aware of that and the
9 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
10 MR. DI FAZIO: And say that here it is, if you want sometime the
11 Prosecution has no objection to an adjournment for a brief period of time
12 to enable the Defence to speak to the witness. I'm trying to avoid any
13 suggestion of ambush or any unfairness on the part of the Prosecution.
14 That's all I'm driving at.
15 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, go ahead. Can the witness be brought in,
17 MR. DI FAZIO: May I just cross the courtroom and provide a copy
18 nonetheless to the defence if Your Honours please?
19 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
20 [The witness entered court]
21 JUDGE MUMBA: The copy of the statement, Mr. Di Fazio, is the one
22 which was already disclosed in 1999, isn't it?
23 MR. DI FAZIO: I believe so, from what my case manager has told me
24 this morning, he's done his researches. There may be a B/C/S translation
25 of the document that I don't have with me here but the statement is in
1 English. The signed one is in English. And there is the acknowledgement
2 at the end of it with the interpreter and so on.
3 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
4 MR. DI FAZIO: So that is the actual statement.
5 JUDGE MUMBA: All right. Can the witness make the solemn
7 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would kindly ask
8 copies to be distributed for the other Defence teams as well of the
10 JUDGE MUMBA: Was it given only to one party?
11 MR. DI FAZIO: Sorry, I do apologise. Yes, I can do that
13 JUDGE MUMBA: All right. Yes, can the witness make the solemn
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't hear so well, I'm sorry.
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Can you increase the volume?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If maybe the volume could be
18 increased? My hearing is impaired. My hearing is impaired.
19 JUDGE MUMBA: Can you make the solemn declaration, please?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. Yes.
21 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. Can you make the solemn declaration?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
23 JUDGE MUMBA: Can you stand up?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
1 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
2 WITNESS: JUSUF ARNAUTOVIC
3 [Witness answered through interpreter]
4 JUDGE MUMBA: Thank you. Please sit down. Yes, counsel?
5 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
6 Examined by Mr. Pisarevic:
7 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Arnautovic.
8 A. Good morning.
9 Q. You can hear me then?
10 A. Yes, I can.
11 Q. Yesterday, when I spoke to you, we discussed a bit the technical
12 aspect of your testimony. I will just now remind you to pause a bit, a
13 few seconds, after I have put my question to you and then start with your
14 answer, the goal being that your testimony is put into the record the way
15 you have said it.
16 Could you state your full name for the record?
17 A. Jusuf Arnautovic.
18 Q. Thank you. When were you born, sir?
19 A. 9th of March, 1931.
20 Q. Can you tell me where you were born?
21 A. Trebinje, Bosnia-Herzegovina.
22 Q. Trebinje is in the state of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
23 A. Well, yes. First it was Herzegovina, well it is
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina. I was born in Bosnia and Herzegovina but in
1 Q. Fine. What is your occupation?
2 A. High-skilled machinist.
3 Q. Can you tell me what your status is at present? Are you a
5 A. I have been retired since 1988.
6 Q. Thank you. Did you serve in the Yugoslav People's Army?
7 A. Yes. I served in the army in 1951 and 1952, in Belgrade, in
8 Tito's guard.
9 Q. Thank you. Were you ever a member of a political party?
10 A. I was a member of the League of Communists until 1972, and I
11 haven't been a member ever since.
12 Q. If I understood you well, you have not been a member of any
13 political party since?
14 A. Yes, that is correct.
15 Q. What is your ethnicity?
16 A. Well, I have never declared myself to be either this or that to
17 this day.
18 Q. Can you tell me where did you reside in 1992? Did you live in
19 Bosanski Samac?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Was it in Pere Bosica Street?
22 A. Yes, formerly Pere Bosica Street.
23 Q. Do you still live there today?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Which house is -- stands on the opposite -- opposite to your house
1 in Pere Bosica Street and who does it belong to?
2 A. The house across from where my house is is the house of Sulejman
3 and Sabrija Dagovic.
4 Q. So are these actually two houses, one is the house of Sulejman
6 A. Yes. This is his house and Sabrija's house is a separate one and
7 it is a bit behind Sulejman's house.
8 Q. So there are two houses actually?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Therefore, you know the families Dagovic well, both the family of
11 Sulejman Dagovic and Sabrija Dagovic?
12 A. Correct. I have known them for 30, 31 years, I also helped them
13 build their house.
14 Q. Thank you. Are you familiar with the fact that -- do you know if
15 Sabrija Dagovic has children?
16 A. Yes. She [as interpreted] has two sons, Esad Dagovic and Safet
18 Q. Thank you.
19 MR. LAZAREVIC: Small correction, here it says she has two sons.
20 Sabrija is a male, not a female. So he has two sons.
21 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, it will be corrected.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Precisely.
23 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Where were you on the 16th and 17th of April, 1992?
25 A. I was in my house.
1 Q. Do you have a wife?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Was your wife with you?
4 A. Yes, she was.
5 Q. On this 17th of April, 1992, so on that morning, what did you see
6 on the 17th of April? Were there any armed civilians who were fleeing
7 towards the bridge on the Bosna River and so on?
8 A. I did see, there were these parties, the SDA, the SDS, so how
9 could I know? At that time there were these parties that were ruling, and
10 there were about 30 or 40 of these paramilitary formations of the SDA in
11 Samac with light weapons and I saw some people who were fleeing to the
12 neighbouring village, with weapons, across the Bosna River. This village
13 is Prud.
14 Q. Thank you. Can you recall any of the people you recognised on
15 that occasion?
16 A. Yes. Udzvalic, I don't know his first name. I know his father's
17 name is Mustafa. So it is Mustafa Udzvalic's son.
18 Q. So on that day on the 17th did you stay at home?
19 A. Yes, I did.
20 Q. Did you spend the night there between the 17th and the 18th? Were
21 you asleep?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Did you personally and your family have any problems?
24 A. No problems whatsoever.
25 Q. Thank you. Now we are --
1 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, for the sake of
2 correcting the transcript, page 34, line 2, it says that armed formations
3 of the SDS were fleeing to Prud. Could my colleague, Mr. Pisarevic, check
5 MR. LAZAREVIC: I'm afraid it is not what it says in transcript.
6 It says paramilitary formation of the SDA. This is what it says on page
7 34, line 4.
8 MR. VUKOVIC: Yes, but in second line he says SDS.
9 JUDGE MUMBA: Just take the witness back so that he can give the
10 correct answer, if he can speak slowly.
11 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Could you just speak a bit more distinctly and slower so the
13 people could understand you? Members of this paramilitary formation, who
14 did they actually belong to, these people who were fleeing to the village
15 of Prud?
16 A. This paramilitary formation was not the regular army. They were a
17 civilian organisation armed by the SDA.
18 Q. Thank you. Mr. Arnautovic, this was just for the purposes of the
19 transcript to have this clarified a bit.
20 Now we've moved on to another day, that is the 18th of April.
21 What did you see on that day from your house?
22 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's request could the witness's
23 microphone please be turned on?
24 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. The members of the 4th Detachment, were they collecting weapons
1 and what did you see on that day and who? Could you please tell the Trial
3 A. Yes. I saw Fadil Topcagic and a colleague of his, they were
4 walking towards the house where they knew that the people had weapons,
5 that is Esad Dagovic and Safet Dagovic. The two of them went to the house
6 and asked for the weapons that I saw later. They took it out later. A
7 Kalashnikov and a pistol.
8 Q. All right. So you saw this. Were there any other persons in
9 military uniform with Fadil and with this other person who you saw?
10 A. This was somewhat later. This was the second or the third day
11 when they were entering the house.
12 Q. No, no, no. We are talking about the 18th, the 18th only. With
13 Fadil and with this other person, were there any other members of the 4th
14 Detachment in uniform and did anybody come to you, to your house? Did
15 anybody knock at the door of your house and ask for weapons?
16 A. Yes. They had set out towards my house but this neighbour, how
17 should I call him, Fadil, said that there was no one here at the house
18 because they were elderly people, they had no weapons, he said that they
19 are pensioners there and there is nothing to be looked for over there.
20 Q. All right. And these soldiers were in the same group with Fadil,
21 they did not come to you at all?
22 A. No, they did not.
23 Q. Can we agree that it wasn't only Fadil and this one man but that
24 there was a group of soldiers there?
25 A. There was a group of soldiers there.
1 Q. Thank you. You say that you entered the house. Did you see them
2 enter the yard? Where did they go? Who went out, et cetera? Did you see
3 this contact, what it actually looked like? Did they first knock at
4 Sulejman's door and did they then go to Sabrija Dagovic's house?
5 A. Dagovic, Sulejman, his house faces the road, whereas Sabrija's
6 house is in the backyard and there was no one else by Sulejman at the
7 house because he worked at the hospital. Dagovic, Sabrija was at home
8 with his wife and his children.
9 Q. Did you see when Fadil and two other soldiers walked into the yard
10 and went to the house?
11 A. Yes, I saw that.
12 Q. Did you see whether they entered the house or not?
13 A. They did not enter the house. They knocked at the door. They
14 came out and asked to take the weapons out, the weapons they had. They
15 first took out the Kalashnikov. They knew that there were other weapons,
16 the young boy brought the pistol too, brought it out later.
17 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, this witness is ascribing
18 all sorts of knowledge and conversation that he can hear. There is
19 absolutely no basis for this. You haven't heard, we don't know, he might
20 have been peeking out of his window through his curtains looking at these
21 events. If so, how could he hear the conversation or he might have
22 strolled across the road and had been present, we don't know. There is no
23 foundation for him to make these assertions and he's also talking about
24 the knowledge of Fadil Topcagic, some basis has to be established for how
25 he can say what was in Fadil's Topcagic's mind, how he knows what Fadil
1 Topcagic knew. Otherwise this evidence is worthless.
2 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Pisarevic, you understood the points made by
3 Mr. Di Fazio, so you can ask the witness.
4 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, yes, yes, Your Honours.
5 This is all quite clear to me. I'm going to ask the witness precisely now
6 whether he saw it and from which place he saw it?
7 A. I saw it and I heard it.
8 Q. How come you saw it?
9 A. I saw it because my house has an upstairs floor and his house is
10 nearby and I saw the yard where he walked in and I heard him asking for
11 weapons and I heard him ask the children to bring out the weapons, and I
12 saw him when he brought the weapons out of the house and we handed in both
13 one and the other because it's not far away. It's 15 metres only. I
14 heard this a bit better now so yes.
15 Q. All right. So you watched all of this from the window of your
16 house and that window is upstairs on the first floor of your house?
17 A. Yes.
18 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] I believe, Your Honours, that this
19 would be a convenient moment for a break.
20 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, we will take our break and continue at 1100
22 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
23 --- On resuming at 11.03 a.m.
24 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Pisarevic?
25 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. Mr. Arnautovic, before the break we discussed the place from which
2 you observed all this -- all these events that were occurring in the
3 street, and in the Dagovic yard. Tell me, please, what else did you see
4 on that occasion? Did you see anyone else accompanying those members of
5 the 4th Detachment, perhaps a vehicle or something like that?
6 A. Yes. I did see a vehicle that was coming from the direction of
7 the Bosna and Sava Rivers towards my street, Pere Bosica Street. It was a
8 sort of anti-aircraft, self-propelled thing. This vehicle turned towards
9 the village of Tisina.
10 Q. You know Simo Zaric well, don't you?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. On that occasion, did you see Mr. Simo Zaric, together with those
13 soldiers, outside your house and the Dagovic house?
14 A. No. I didn't. Simo Zaric was not on top of that vehicle and I
15 didn't see him.
16 Q. All right. Do you know Mr. Miroslav Tadic?
17 A. I do, very well.
18 Q. On that occasion, did you see him there?
19 A. No, I didn't.
20 Q. Very well. What happened after a couple of months when an
21 airplane bombed the city of -- sorry, the town of Samac? What happened to
22 your house?
23 A. On the 23rd of September, at 1900 hours, or rather 2120 hours, we
24 heard the sound of an engine that resembled the sound of a tractor. I was
25 in the basement of my house and I wanted to come out of the house but my
1 wife didn't allow it, and then we heard an explosion, a bomb from that
2 airplane fell on the city waterworks and another bomb fell on my house. A
3 third bomb fell into the yard of the neighbour's house. The neighbour's
4 name was Ovijeta Stankovic.
5 Q. Was your house damaged on that occasion?
6 A. It wasn't damaged. It was almost demolished. It was a terribly
7 loud explosion. That bomb was about ten to 15 kilos of explosive. You
8 can imagine what kind of detonation that was.
9 Q. Who came to your house offering help?
10 A. That evening, at 9.25, and I must say I am beside myself with joy
11 because I stayed alive, troops came to my house offering help, Dr. Ozren
12 asked me if anyone was hurt. I said nobody was hurt and he said, "That's
13 impossible. The house is almost demolished." We crossed the yard to go
14 to the shelter across the street, and the next morning, I went to inspect
15 the damage. I went into the house. I saw only ruins and rubble. Nothing
16 was left intact. And the first person who came to see me after that was
17 Miroslav Tadic. He offered assistance, saying, don't worry, everything
18 will be all right. Don't worry, the main thing is that you're alive and
19 well. He was the first one who came.
20 Q. Are you sure that it was Miroslav Tadic who came, that it wasn't
21 Simo Zaric?
22 A. Oh, I'm so sorry, so sorry, it was Simo Zaric of course. He was
23 the first one who came. The first person who offered me a kind word.
24 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have no further
25 questions, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, any other counsel? Prosecution?
2 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
3 Cross-examined by Mr. Di Fazio:
4 Q. You know, don't you, that on the night of the 16th and 17th of
5 April, 1992, Serbian paramilitaries took over the town of Bosanski Samac?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And you know that that was accompanied by the declaration of a
8 Serbian Crisis Staff and that took over the civilian administration of the
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Did you see the activities of those paramilitaries, either on the
12 night of the 16th and 17th, or on the 17th of April? Did you see what
13 they were up to?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. What were they doing?
16 A. Well, those paramilitary formations that had come from outside,
17 whether it was from Belgrade or some other place, I don't know, they
18 harassed people, they came into their houses, looking for things that they
19 wanted to take, such as money, valuables, jewellery.
20 Q. Certainly I don't disagree with you that they were doing that but
21 do you agree with me that one of the things that they were doing was going
22 around to houses and seizing weapons?
23 A. Well, I don't know how many people had any weapons in their
24 houses. There was not much weaponry in Samac and it was the 4th
25 Detachment that collected those weapons.
1 Q. And we certainly don't disagree on that point, Mr. Arnautovic.
2 However, my question was: Did you see paramilitaries going into houses,
3 maybe doing all sorts of other things, but also seizing weapons from the
4 people, the citizenry of Bosanski Samac?
5 A. Well, I did see, and they came into my neighbour's house, took
6 jewellery off their wrists and necklaces from their necks, and as far as
7 weapons are concerned, there was very few of that in Samac.
8 Q. Okay. Is it your position then that you did not see
9 paramilitaries take or seize weapons?
10 A. No, I didn't.
11 Q. Did you hear of that happening, paramilitaries seizing weapons?
12 A. Well, as a matter of fact, there were no weapons in Samac. If
13 there were any, there were very few because they had already been turned
14 over to the 4th Corps, the 4th Corps had already collected the weapons.
15 Q. No, no.
16 A. Otherwise, the people who had weapons had already run away from
18 Q. The paramilitaries came in on the night of the 16th and 17th.
19 They came into the town. There were bombs, explosions and shooting,
20 correct? Just answer yes or no, please.
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. All right. And the paramilitaries were carrying out activities on
23 the day of the 17th, correct? Just answer yes or no, please.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. All right. On the 17th, when those paramilitaries were carrying
1 out their activities are you aware in any what whatsoever of them seizing
2 weapons? That's all I want to know. Not jewellery, not property, not
3 doing bad things, just focus on that one issue. Are you aware of
4 paramilitaries seizing weapons on the 17th?
5 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Pisarevic?
6 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the witness has
7 already answered twice that he is not aware that paramilitary formations
8 rounded up weapons around Samac. He said that the 4th Detachment did that
9 and the Prosecutor is asking the question for the third and the fourth
10 time already, although he already has an answer.
11 MR. DI FAZIO: Very well. I'll withdraw the question and proceed
12 to the events of the 17th.
13 Q. On that day, did you see -- I'm sorry, the 18th of April. On that
14 day, you saw the soldiers go to [Realtime transcript read in error "into"]
15 the house of the Dagovic family and they were members of the 4th
16 Detachment; is that correct?
17 A. No. Paramilitary formations.
18 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Please, the witness didn't say
19 they went into the house. He said they went into the yards and the
20 members of the 4th Detachment never went into a house. Please don't
21 confuse the witness by asking such questions. If you want to ask a
22 question, don't phrase it as if he had said it that way. Please ask fair
24 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Excuse me, Mr. Pisarevic, but I think there is
25 just a misunderstanding here. Mr. Di Fazio in his question, page 43, line
1 8, did not say you saw the soldiers go into the house. He said you saw
2 the soldiers go to the house.
3 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Q. And witness, that's exactly what I meant. On that day, the 18th
5 of April, you saw members of the 4th Detachment go to the house. I'm not
6 saying they went inside the house but they went to the house, stood
7 outside the house. That's correct, right? Am I correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. About how many were they?
10 A. You mean the people who came outside the house? There were two of
11 them from the 4th Detachment. They were looking for weapons.
12 Q. Were they accompanied by a larger group of 4th Detachment
14 A. No.
15 Q. You've testified to seeing a vehicle this morning, let me rephrase
16 that. This morning in court you have testified that you saw a vehicle.
17 That was on the 18th and that was at about the time that the soldiers went
18 to the house of Esad Dagovic, a military vehicle.
19 A. They didn't go to Dagovic's house in that military vehicle.
20 Q. How far away was the military vehicle from the house of Esad
22 A. Well, ten, maybe 12 metres.
23 Q. Okay. And surrounding that vehicle, were there soldiers from the
24 4th Detachment?
25 A. No.
1 Q. So the entire collection of people out in the street in front of
2 the house were two soldiers from the 4th Detachment and one military
3 vehicle? That's it? No other people?
4 A. No. That vehicle set off and went on its way without stopping.
5 Q. Thank you. But the -- so it never stopped, it just passed by the
6 house; is that correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Was it a tank?
9 A. I don't know. It was this self-propelled thing with one
10 machine-gun or whatever it was, maybe a light cannon. It wasn't a tank.
11 Q. If I suggested to you that from your window, you could see Simo
12 Zaric, Miroslav Tadic and other soldiers standing at the corner of the
13 street on the morning of the 17th of April, 17th of April, 1992, would you
14 agree with me?
15 A. I didn't see them.
16 Q. And if I suggested to you that you saw such a sight and at the
17 time that Mr. Tadic and Mr. Zaric were standing in uniform in the street,
18 would you agree with me?
19 MR. LAZAREVIC: I object to this line of questioning. I mean he
20 already said that he haven't seen them. What's the difference whether
21 according to what Mr. Di Fazio said, whether they were in uniforms or
22 not. If he hadn't seen them, he hadn't seen them.
23 MR. DI FAZIO: Fair enough. I'll withdraw my question.
24 Q. You provided a statement, didn't you, to officers of the OTP on
25 the 26th of November, 1998, did you not? Those officers being two men
1 named Yves Roy and Gary Selsky?
2 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have an objection.
3 The Prosecutor wishes to use the statement given by this witness on the
4 28th of November, 1998. We got this statement only today. We had never
5 seen it before. If we had had this statement before, then we would have
6 been able to use the circumstances stated here, both in the examination of
7 the Prosecutors and our own witnesses. All the witnesses that we had and
8 Blagoje Simic's witnesses have already passed. This manner of proceeding
9 could incur great damage to both our defences and we are strongly
10 objecting to the use of anything in this statement in the examination of
11 this witness.
12 MR. DI FAZIO: The statement doesn't concern the activities of
13 Blagoje Simic at all. He's not mentioned. I'm sorry, I am sorry, my
14 apologies, it does but nonetheless --
15 JUDGE MUMBA: I thought, Mr. Di Fazio this is a statement which
16 you said was already disclosed to the Defence.
17 MR. DI FAZIO: It was.
18 JUDGE MUMBA: So there is no basis for this.
19 MR. DI FAZIO: That was going to be my ultimate point.
20 JUDGE MUMBA: There is no basis for this objection. The
21 Prosecution can go ahead.
22 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
23 Q. Did you provide --
24 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I apologise but this
25 statement was never disclosed to me. I am speaking for the Defence of
1 Blagoje Simic. Today is the first time I see this statement.
2 MR. DI FAZIO: I can't explain that. I don't know why Mr. Vukovic
3 sees the statement for the first time. It was disclosed to the Defence in
4 November of 1999. Perhaps there is a lack of communication, I don't know.
5 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, because when we talk of the Defence we are
6 including the whole Defence team.
7 MR. DI FAZIO: Different lawyers at different times for different
9 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] If I may assist the Chamber, I really
11 have to say at my own risk that I see this document today for the first
12 time and the case manager from the OTP told me that the Defence of
13 Miroslav Tadic received this document on the 23rd of November, 1999. I
14 will check that because I have all the receipts for all the documents
15 disclosed to us in my office, but my client tells me that he had never
16 seen this document before. And the Prosecution never gave us any proof of
17 having served us the B/C/S version. What I know is when I asked the
18 Prosecutor and when the case manager told us that this was disclosed to us
19 on the 23rd of November, 1999, Blagoje Simic, that much I can say, had not
20 surrendered at that time and he is certainly not aware of this statement
21 so we want this to be on record if there is any intention to use the
23 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if you allow me, I
24 just want to make a few remarks that I believe may assist the Trial
25 Chamber. How did it come about that these statements were taken? The
1 Defence of Simo Zaric provided certain statements to the investigators of
2 the Tribunal and they presented us with a request, asking to talk to
3 certain witnesses whose statements we had provided. Mr. Zaric was at the
4 time in detention here and in consultation with him I gave our approval to
5 the investigators for conducting an interview with nine witnesses that we
6 had suggested and whose statements we had served. It was then noted that
7 I as defender of Mr. Zaric would attend the interviews. However,
8 investigator Yves Roy came with Mrs. Paterson, who wasn't present there
9 but they were in touch with her by telephone, and they assumed the
10 position that the counsel may not be present during the interviews.
11 I did not want to insist, and we enabled them to talk to these
12 witnesses. At that time, the witnesses concerned were designated as
13 witnesses for the Defence of Simo Zaric. It is purely out of the wish to
14 be cooperative towards the OTP that we had provided these statements. I
15 never insisted that these statements be provided to us before, but if
16 we -- if I hadn't insisted ultimately we would have never received them in
17 the first place, and we never got the B/C/S translation, and now this
18 problem is occurring in the Office of the Prosecutor because they
19 discovered that only yesterday. This is the history of these statements.
20 As far as I know, these statements were never given or read out to
21 the witnesses in question in B/C/S so that they could know what they were
22 signing and what was on record. So much for that.
23 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, regardless of how it
24 came about that these statements were taken, the Defence of Blagoje Simic
25 objects to the part of the statement referring to Blagoje Simic being used
1 now, because in year 2000, when this statement was disclosed, Blagoje
2 Simic was not part of this case, and today is indeed the first time we see
3 this statement. It could really incur great damage on the Defence of
4 Blagoje Simic. That is the basis for our objection.
5 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, the sole purpose that the
6 Prosecution wants to make of this document is to impeach the credibility
7 of this witness. That's its purpose. It's not going to be used against
8 Blagoje Simic, for a start. Secondly, the -- if I may just move over to
9 the screen, to my -- to the discovery log, our records show that on the
10 23rd, bracket 29th question mark closed bracket of November of 1999,
11 witness statements of Defence witnesses taken by OTP were disclosed and
12 this -- this statement of this witness is included in a number -- two
13 Arnautovics and including a copy of a speech given by Mr. Zaric in that
14 particular bundle of documents, a number of other witness statements. So
15 our records indicate that the statement's been disclosed.
16 JUDGE MUMBA: But not to the team of Mr. Blagoje Simic?
17 MR. DI FAZIO: No. It would -- there is a name Simic there but I
18 assume at that stage, it was Milan Simic.
19 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes because that was the Simic that was there.
20 MR. DI FAZIO: But as I said we are not using the statement to --
21 against Blagoje Simic in any way. It's purely and simply to impeach the
22 credibility of this witness. That's the purpose of it, inconsistent
24 [Trial Chamber confers]
25 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. The Trial Chamber is of the view that the
1 Prosecution will be allowed to use the statement for impeachment purposes
3 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
4 Q. Now on the 26th of November, 1998, you gave a statement to
5 officers from the OTP, Yves Roy and Gary Selsky did you not? I'm sorry,
6 I haven't heard your answer.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And that statement was reduced to English and was orally
9 translated back to you by an interpreter, Irena Martinovic, correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And you signed the bottom of each page of that statement, did you
13 A. I did sign, but I didn't know what the interpreter was saying to
14 those who were writing things down into documents.
15 Q. Thank you. So you signed --
16 A. But I signed.
17 Q. Thank you. You signed that statement. And at the end of the
18 statement you signed a witness acknowledgement saying that the statement
19 had been read over to you in the Croatian language and that it was true to
20 the best of your knowledge and recollection and that you had given the
21 statement voluntarily and that you were aware that it may be used in legal
22 proceedings before the ICTY, correct?
23 A. Yes. I however disagree with one thing. I did not say how many
24 soldiers there were in the 4th Detachment. I didn't know that then. Nor
25 do I know it today. How many soldiers there were. Nor is it in my
1 interest to know that. And they mentioned 1.800 to 2.000 troops.
2 Q. Thank you and when you gave the statement to the officers of the
3 OTP, you were endeavouring to tell the truth and sought to tell the truth
4 to those officers?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And in the statement, you said, did you not, "I live in a big
7 house on main street and I saw from my window Simo Zaric, Miroslav Tadic
8 and some other soldiers standing at the corner of the street in the
9 morning on the 17th of April, 1992. Miro Tadic and Simo were standing in
10 uniform in the street. I could see a lot of soldiers going back and forth
11 near my corner, there was a tank, they were heavily armed and I don't know
12 why they need all that army because there was no resistance in Samac."
13 You said those things in your statement in November of 1998, did you not?
14 A. Yes. I did state that. However, I did not see Simo Zaric and
15 Miroslav Tadic. I heard their voices. There must have been a mistake by
16 the interpreter.
17 Q. You've told the Trial Chamber this morning that Zaric and Tadic
18 weren't present. Either on the 17th or the 18th. You've not described
19 their presence at any time on the 17th or 18th in the vicinity of your
20 house or the Dagovic house. Yet in your statement, you've said that they
21 are on the corner, you've described them being in uniform, the presence of
22 a tank. Which of those two versions should the Trial Chamber accept?
23 A. Well, to tell you honestly, I did not see them. I heard -- I
24 don't know whether they were wearing a uniform. I don't know -- I know
25 that Tadic never wore a uniform. He was always in civilian clothes. Simo
1 Zaric was in the 4th Detachment and I believe he wore a uniform, military
3 Q. Yes, but let's take it point by point. First of all, you say this
4 morning, and moments ago, that you didn't actually see them. You only
5 heard them. In your statement, however, you say "I saw from my window
6 Simo Zaric, Miroslav Tadic and some other soldiers." Now, what's the
7 Trial Chamber --
8 A. I didn't.
9 Q. Just wait. What's the Trial Chamber to believe, that you only
10 heard them or, as you said in your statement in 1998, that you saw them?
11 Which one? Which version is correct?
12 A. The correct version is what I have said. I didn't see them but I
13 did hear their voices. They were standing around the corner behind a
14 house, which was not very far from where I was.
15 Q. What were they doing there?
16 A. They were standing at the corner, at the crossing. Simo Zaric
17 knew many citizens of Samac because he had been there for a long time. He
18 wouldn't allow the paramilitary formations to tour the houses, and he was
19 standing at the door of a house where a lady and a girl resided and they
20 told her, "Grandma, you should not be going out because there is a lot of
21 shooting going on." And they didn't allow the paramilitary formations to
22 enter other houses as well.
23 Q. What was he wearing when you heard him?
24 A. I don't know that.
25 Q. Now, look, you've just told the Trial Chamber --
1 MR. LAZAREVIC: This was not fair, just for the record.
2 MR. DI FAZIO:
3 Q. You told the Trial Chamber moments ago, moments ago, that you only
4 heard their voices, yet you described Mr. Zaric -- you described Mr. Zaric
5 standing at the corner, at the crossing and Tadic. So you're just
6 changing your evidence as questions are being asked, aren't you? Am I
7 correct? Or am I wrong?
8 A. I still stand by what I stated. I did not see them. I heard.
9 Therefore, Tadic never wore a military uniform. Simo Zaric did. But I
10 didn't see that. I do presume that he was wearing a military uniform at
11 the time as well, since he was a member of the 4th Detachment.
12 Q. Okay. Now, this morning you've described --
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Arnautovic, I must warn that you've taken a
14 solemn declaration to tell this Trial Chamber the truth.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The truth, certainly.
16 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, if you give false testimony, you can be
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I agree.
19 MR. DI FAZIO:
20 Q. All right. Let's move to another topic. That's the question of
21 the vehicle that was there. Your evidence this morning has been that it
22 was some sort of military vehicle. Having read the portions of your
23 statement you made in 1998, to the effect that there was a tank, has that
24 refreshed your memory and do you now agree that there was a tank in the
25 vicinity of your home and the Dagovic home?
1 A. Yes. There was a military vehicle. To tell you honestly, there
2 was a difference between a tank and this military vehicle. This was of
3 course a military vehicle, just as a tank is a military vehicle. You
4 wouldn't see a civilian driving one. This vehicle, well, it's difficult
5 for me to understand what it is. It had a light weaponry, it was moving.
6 It was constantly in movement. And next to Dagovic's house, it just went
7 by, and proceeded on to the villages that are there beyond.
8 Q. In your statement, you described it as a tank. Is there any
9 reason for you not to have accurately described it, the vehicle, in your
10 statement as a tank, back in 1998?
11 A. This vehicle resembles a tank. It also has -- it has also
12 caterpillars but it has a light weaponry, it is anti-aircraft machine-gun,
13 it was some sort of a self-propelled vehicle. I'm not very familiar with
14 weapons and such.
15 Q. So the Chamber can be certain that this vehicle, whatever it
16 was, was on caterpillar tracks as tanks -- similar to what tanks use?
17 A. Right.
18 Q. Correct? And it was a -- obviously a military vehicle and heavily
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. It was a large vehicle, similar to the proportions of a tank?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. It had a large weapon top of it, it must have been a large weapon
24 if it's an anti-aircraft machine-gun, that's not a light machine-gun,
25 that's a heavy machine-gun, correct?
1 A. Precisely so, heavy machine-gun that can be used against
2 aircrafts, but also infantry. It was maybe 20, 22 millimetre machine-gun.
3 Q. But for the purposes of the Trial Chamber, it was a larger, more
4 powerful machine-gun than typically held or carried by soldiers?
5 A. Well, soldiers also have larger calibre 100, 120 millimetre.
6 Well, this was a smaller calibre. It wasn't a gun, a cannon, but maybe
7 heavy machine-gun, some 20, 22 millimetres, thereabouts.
8 Q. And you will agree with me that given all of these features that
9 you've just described of this vehicle, and given the fact that in your
10 statement of 1998 you yourself describe the vehicle as a tank, that a
11 person seeing this tank on the 17th -- sorry, this vehicle on the 17th or
12 18th might easily have been mistaken as to the nature of this vehicle and
13 describe it as a tank?
14 MR. LAZAREVIC: That's speculation whether a -- some other person
15 could drive some conclusions. This is not a proper question in our
17 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Di Fazio. That's describing what another
18 person, the mistake another person would mistake.
19 MR. DI FAZIO: Perhaps it's a matter for submission, if Your
20 Honours please.
21 Q. Now, the members of the 4th Detachment who were in your street
22 went to the Dagovic house and sought weaponry but they did not come to
23 your house, did they?
24 A. Correct.
25 Q. And you say that's because Fadil Topcagic directed them away from
1 your house? In other words said that there is just old pensioners in the
2 house and they need not search the premises?
3 A. Yes. Because he knew that there was -- there were no weapons in
4 my house for sure, and there wasn't any -- anything really expensive for
5 them to take away.
6 Q. Thank you. So in your street, at least, the 4th Detachment was
7 being selective as to which houses it searched, sorry, as to which
8 premises it went to collect weapons?
9 MR. LAZAREVIC: Could the counsel be more precise in this, using
10 of word selective?
11 MR. DI FAZIO: I think that's quite precise enough, isn't it?
12 JUDGE MUMBA: The question is quite clear. There is nothing wrong
13 with it. The Prosecution can proceed.
14 MR. DI FAZIO:
15 Q. My question was, in your street at least, the 4th Detachment was
16 being selective as to which houses it went to collect weapons.
17 A. Well, by and large, they knew who possessed weapons and they
18 entered those dwellings or houses where they knew there were persons who
19 possessed weapons, and they did not come to my house because I didn't have
20 any. They went to Sabrija Dagovic's house and they found some weapons
21 there. I -- now, as for the rest of my street which is actually one of
22 the main streets, where there is most traffic, whether they went on,
23 whether they proceeded, well probably they did, but there were no weapons
24 because whoever had weapons either ran away, hid them or disposed of the
1 Q. And you would agree with me, wouldn't you, that the sight of this
2 large military vehicle and armed men was intimidating and frightening for
3 you and the other citizens in the street?
4 A. To tell you the truth, I was not afraid because I wasn't guilty of
5 anything, and when the vehicle was turning around, you know with the -- in
6 the caterpillar tracks it usually turns around very slowly and the
7 machine-gun was turned toward our house but this was merely because the
8 vehicle was turning around and it proceeded on its way and actually went
10 Q. This was the first time that you had seen tanks or sorry, a
11 military vehicle similar to a tank, or whatever it might have been, in
12 your street?
13 A. Yes, yes.
14 Q. Do you have any knowledge or awareness as to why it was necessary
15 for the 4th Detachment to collect weapons with the use of a large military
17 A. Well, to put it frankly, they were expecting some sort of a
18 resistance, because of the situation in the other part of the country,
19 well, in the Republic of Croatia. There is only the Sava River dividing
20 Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, and they were afraid of a possible attack
21 from Croatia against Samac.
22 Q. The truth of the matter is, isn't it, that the tank, sorry, the
23 large military vehicle, was used to intimidate the citizens of Bosanski
24 Samac, frighten them and scare them into handing over their weapons?
25 MR. LAZAREVIC: I object. I object.
1 JUDGE MUMBA: Why?
2 MR. LAZAREVIC: How could this witness possibly know what the
3 military personnel wanted to achieve with this military vehicle? He
4 already answered that -- and I may be it was my mistake not to object the
5 first time when he was asked what was the topic, why did they use this
6 large military vehicle, the 4th Detachment, this witness was never a
7 member of the 4th Detachment, but now I'm standing to this objection.
8 This is a pure call for speculation.
9 MR. DI FAZIO: All right. Perhaps if I rephrased the question.
10 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Di Fazio.
11 MR. DI FAZIO:
12 Q. Are you aware of the reason why the tank was used for the
13 collection of weapons from houses? What was its role? Do you know?
14 A. The tank -- well, let's call it a tank but it was a self-propelled
15 vehicle with caterpillar tracks, it did not intimidate people. The people
16 were in their houses. It went in the direction of the Sava and Bosna
17 Rivers because there you had machine-gun fire opened in the direction of
18 Croatia and in the village Prud, where you had paramilitary formations,
19 Croats gathering there, and this tank perhaps fired some ten, 20 rounds,
20 any then withdrew and proceeded its way.
21 Q. Are you saying that the vehicle, this military vehicle, actually
22 discharged -- fired close to your house?
23 MR. LAZAREVIC: I object. This is exactly the opposite of what
24 the witness said.
25 MR. DI FAZIO:
1 Q. Well --
2 JUDGE MUMBA: The translation seems to say that.
3 MR. DI FAZIO: There was some sort of firing of the vehicle.
4 JUDGE MUMBA: This tank perhaps fired some 10, 20 rounds.
5 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes but not, he didn't say it was in front of his
6 street. He said on --
7 MR. DI FAZIO: I asked the vicinity. In the vicinity. That's
8 what I'm trying to find out from the --
9 JUDGE MUMBA: You can ask again, Mr. Di Fazio.
10 MR. DI FAZIO:
11 Q. Yes. Witness, you said that the tank went off in the direction of
12 the Sava and Bosna and then opened fire in the direction of Croatia. How
13 far from your house and the Dagovic house was it when it fired?
14 A. It was some 150, 200 metres away.
15 Q. And you could hear that clearly, the firing?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Did you find that frightening and intimidating, that large --
18 A. No, no.
19 Q. How do you know it was firing in the direction of Croatia?
20 A. Because I could hear and see.
21 Q. So you were actually out in the street looking at the vehicle?
22 A. Well, I saw it when it was returning and when it was going towards
23 the Sava and Bosna Rivers.
24 Q. Could you see it -- when it discharged, when it fired, was that in
25 the presence of other houses, or sorry, were other houses nearby?
1 A. It was in between the houses, because Samac is a very densely
2 populated town. It would go between houses, and then discharge, and then
4 Q. Okay. One thing is absolutely crystal clear, though. You did
5 hear that military vehicle fire and discharge?
6 A. I did.
7 Q. And it did so at a time when it was close to or nearby to
8 residential homes in Bosanski Samac?
9 A. Yes. But outside the town, toward, in the direction of the Sava
10 River, down there.
11 Q. Okay. Thank you. Thank you.
12 MR. DI FAZIO: I have no further questions.
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Re-examination?
14 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours.
15 Re-examined by Mr. Pisarevic:
16 Q. [Interpretation] The vehicle that you saw in the street, in Pere
17 Bosica Street, as you stated, had a machine-gun on top. In order to
18 clarify what you saw, first we will say that you said that it was a
19 self-propelled armoured vehicle with this machine-gun, correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Did this vehicle, just as tanks do, have a tank barrel, which is
22 something that actually distinguishes a tank from other armoured vehicle?
23 A. No, no, it did not have a barrel. I know what a gun is. This was
24 a heavy machine-gun, let's call it that way, an anti-aircraft weapon and
25 maybe also anti-infantry.
1 Q. This is not what we are talking about. Let's just make a
2 distinction. On a tank, you have the long barrel and on this particular
3 vehicle that you saw on the 18th of April, 1992, there was no such tank
5 A. Correct. There wasn't any.
6 Q. When you were answering the Prosecutor's question a moment ago,
7 you said that you heard some shooting, that some sort of a combat vehicle
8 was opening fire. When you heard the fire open, was it on the 18th of
9 April or were you actually talking about something that happened in the
10 aftermath of the 18th of April?
11 A. I cannot give you a precise date but perhaps it was on the 20th or
12 the 25th or maybe even later, that on that day, however, there wasn't such
14 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, the witness clearly
15 described the episode happening very shortly after the episode that he
16 witnessed at the Dagovic house.
17 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes.
18 MR. DI FAZIO: He said it turned around and went off down the road
19 and then he heard the sound of fire so we know clearly that the witness
20 has linked it to that episode and I think in his evidence he said that
21 this happened on the 18th. It's not a matter that I opened up in
23 JUDGE MUMBA: If the witness decides to change his evidence now
24 and then, that's up to Mr. Pisarevic and up to the witness as to what he
25 can remember and what type of picture he wants to present. He has already
1 been warned about telling the truth.
2 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] I understand, Your Honour.
3 However, there is another problem. The Prosecution does not understand
4 the town of Samac. I shall remind you that the witness said that this
5 armoured combat vehicle went towards Tisina, towards the villages and
6 when he was explaining --
7 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Pisarevic, the evidence given by this witness is
8 on record, just go ahead with your re-examination.
9 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. This vehicle that you saw that passed by and you said that it went
11 to Tisina, did that vehicle shoot from that machine-gun at that moment at
12 that time? Did you see that or did you hear that?
13 A. That day, I did not hear it. However, this vehicle was coming
14 from the opposite street. It went, it did not stop, it turned around, and
15 it went down there towards the villages, the village is called Tisina.
16 But there was shooting on that day too, now whether that vehicle was there
17 or not, perhaps it was another vehicle or another machine-gun or another
18 cannon or whatever. I don't know. I didn't see this.
19 Q. Please, the question for you is did you see that vehicle, which
20 passed in front of your window, in front of your house, and which went
21 towards Tisina, that is on the opposite side of the village of Prud and
22 the village of -- and the Republic of Croatia, isn't that right?
23 A. Yes, that's right.
24 Q. Did you hear that vehicle shoot on that day after it passed by?
25 A. I did not hear any shooting that day, but there was shooting
1 coming from all sorts of things, machine-guns, whatever.
2 Q. I'm just interested in that vehicle now.
3 On that day, the 17th and 18th, did you leave your house and go
4 out into the street?
5 A. No.
6 Q. What you said to the Prosecutor that you heard the voice of Simo
7 Zaric and Miroslav Tadic, did that voice come from the street of Pere
8 Bosica or did it come from another street, this voice that you heard?
9 A. Another street, opposite.
10 Q. Does that street intersect with --
11 A. The street of Pere Bosica, it does, it does intersect.
12 Q. Can you tell us the name of this street?
13 A. Now it's called Cara Dusana.
14 Q. Do you agree with me that before it was called the street Edvarda
16 A. Yes, Edvarda Kardelja.
17 Q. Do you recall, when you gave a statement to the representatives of
18 the OTP in Samac in 1998, whether the interpreter, Martinovic, read this
19 statement out to you in the Serbian, Croatian or Bosnian language?
20 A. No, she didn't.
21 Q. This statement, was it ever put to you in the Serbian language?
22 Did you ever read it in the Serbian language and then sign it?
23 A. No.
24 Q. That means that you signed only the English version. Since not
25 everything is recorded in the transcript, all right, so you just signed
1 the English version?
2 A. I made the statement and I signed it immediately. Nothing else.
3 It was not read out to me, I didn't get anything afterwards, nothing.
4 Q. Do you happen to know English?
5 A. No.
6 MR. PISAREVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, no further questions.
7 Questioned by the Court:
8 JUDGE WILLIAMS: I just have one question, Mr. Arnautovic. I just
9 want to know how far from your house is the intersection of the two
10 streets mentioned, Pere Bosica and Edvarda Kardelja streets? So this
11 intersection where you say you heard Mr. Zaric's voice coming from, how
12 far is it away, approximately, from your house and where you were in that
13 house perhaps?
14 A. Exactly nine metres.
15 JUDGE WILLIAMS: Thank you.
16 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Mr. Arnautovic, when you told us about certain
17 and different observations you made on that very day, I got the
18 impression, perhaps I misunderstood what you said, but I got the
19 impression that you made your observations through your window in your
20 apartment. Am I correct?
21 A. I did see but I did not see that street. I saw the intersection,
22 but I did not see anybody behind the street but I heard and recognised
23 Simo Zaric's voice and Miroslav Tadic's.
24 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Through the window?
25 A. They were talking. Oh, no, not through the window. I was in the
2 JUDGE LINDHOLM: So you went out of your house?
3 A. I was not in the house itself but it was -- I was in my yard.
4 JUDGE LINDHOLM: In the front of your house or at the back?
5 A. Behind the house.
6 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Okay. But the military vehicle you were talking
7 about, it was moving along the Pere Bosica Street, if I understood you
9 A. Yes.
10 JUDGE LINDHOLM: But you could see it even if you -- when you were
11 in the yard behind your house?
12 A. Well, I could see it, but at that moment, when the vehicle was
13 passing by, I was in the house with my wife.
14 JUDGE LINDHOLM: And watched it through your window?
15 A. Yes.
16 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Thank you.
17 You told us that that military vehicle was moving on caterpillar
18 tracks and that it had a machine-gun of whatever calibre, it's not so
19 interesting but what I'm interested in, did it have only one barrel?
20 A. Only one barrel.
21 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Then you said, if I understood you correctly,
22 first when you observed that vehicle, it was moving in the direction from
23 east to west. Am I correct?
24 A. This vehicle was moving from the north to the east.
25 JUDGE LINDHOLM: But your street, Pere Bosica, is, according to
1 the map I have in front of me, almost running in the direction west-east.
2 So to say from the direction of the Bosna River --
3 A. Yes.
4 JUDGE LINDHOLM: -- towards the villages.
5 A. Yes.
6 JUDGE LINDHOLM: And from which direction --
7 A. Yes.
8 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Yes, okay. From which direction did the vehicle
9 arrive when you first observed it? From the east or from the west?
10 A. From the north. From the Sava River.
11 JUDGE LINDHOLM: But that couldn't be along the Pere Bosica
12 street. It must have been along another street.
13 A. No. No. This vehicle came from the street of Cara Dusana, and
14 it turned into the street of Pere Bosica, and then it proceeded.
15 JUDGE LINDHOLM: In which direction, east or west?
16 A. East.
17 JUDGE LINDHOLM: But you said it turned around.
18 A. Well, it came from the north, and then it turned to the east,
19 because my house is at the intersection of Pere Bosica and Edvarda
20 Kardelja. Only nine metres away, so I could see all of this from the
21 window, where it was going and where it came from.
22 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Okay. And then we -- when it had passed by, it
23 went in the direction, east direction, am I right?
24 A. Yes.
25 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Then you told us that after some 100 metres, you
1 could either watch or in some way recognise that it fired some 20 rounds?
2 A. No, no. I did not see that and I did not hear that. This vehicle
3 went on. It went to the villages down there, perhaps two or three
4 kilometres away from Samac.
5 JUDGE LINDHOLM: So when we were talking about a military vehicle
6 firing some 20 rounds, you are talking about another occasion?
7 A. Now, whether that vehicle fired then, on the other side, because
8 Samac is about two or three kilometres long, now, whether it fired down
9 there, towards Croatia or not, is something that I don't know. Only
10 shooting was heard. There was quite a bit of shooting.
11 JUDGE LINDHOLM: So you couldn't exactly define whether it was
12 that vehicle or some other --
13 A. Couldn't.
14 JUDGE LINDHOLM: Okay. Thank you. No further questions.
15 JUDGE MUMBA: Thank you very much for giving evidence. You are
16 now finished. You may leave the courtroom.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 [The witness withdrew]
19 [The witness entered court]
20 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. Please make the solemn declaration.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
22 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
23 WITNESS: MUSTAFA OMERANOVIC
24 [Witness answered through interpreter]
25 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. Please sit down.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Lazarevic?
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Examined by Mr. Lazarevic:
5 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, sir.
6 A. Good afternoon.
7 Q. During the proofing yesterday, I told you that for the purposes of
8 the transcript, it would be best for you to wait for me to finish my
9 question and then you count to 2 and then you answer the question so that
10 everything would be recorded in the transcript the way you put it and the
11 way it is expected to be.
12 Could you now please, for the purposes of the record, give us
13 your full name and surname?
14 A. My name is Mustafa Omeranovic.
15 Q. Please give me the date of your birth.
16 A. The 8th of July, 1940.
17 Q. Tell me, where were you born?
18 A. In Bosanski Samac.
19 Q. Can you tell us where you live now?
20 A. Also in Bosanski Samac.
21 Q. Tell me, what is your profession?
22 A. I'm a retired person.
23 Q. However, before you retired, what did you do?
24 A. I was an administrative clerk at the Mebos company in Bosanski
1 Q. Thank you very much. Sir, did you do your military service in the
2 Yugoslav People's Army? If so, tell us when and where.
3 A. I served in Croatia in Bjelovar in 1964. I beg your pardon, in
4 1964, or rather from 1964, until 1966.
5 Q. Thank you. Did you have any rank in the military?
6 A. No.
7 Q. Sir, could you please give us your ethnic background?
8 A. A Muslim, a Bosniak.
9 Q. Tell me, have you ever been a member of any political party, and
10 are you now a member of any political party?
11 A. No, never. I've never been a member of any party.
12 Q. Were you perhaps in the League of Communists?
13 A. No in my family, it was only one son, nobody else.
14 Q. Thank you. Sir, are you married?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Do you have any children?
17 A. Yes. I have three children, two sons and one daughter.
18 Q. In order to have a complete picture, could you please tell us what
19 is your wife's name?
20 A. Koviljka.
21 Q. Is your wife related to Mr. Simo Zaric?
22 A. Yes, she is his sister.
23 Q. Thank you very much. Sir, now I would like to move on very
24 briefly, there is no need to dwell on this very long. These are matters
25 that had been explained here many times. Were you a member of the 4th
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Tell me, in which way did you become a member of the 4th
5 A. Well, you know what the situation was like. It suited me best
6 that way.
7 Q. Did you receive mobilisation call-up papers?
8 A. What do you mean?
9 Q. General.
10 A. You mean during the war?
11 Q. Sorry, beginning of 1992.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Thank you. Tell me, when did you become a member of the
15 A. Well, that was sometime in January, 1992, or was it spring or --
16 no, January.
17 Q. All right. Tell me, these are things that are well known here
18 already but just tell us who the commander and deputy commander of the 4th
19 Detachment were?
20 A. The first commander was Radovan Antic and he was replaced by
21 Savic, and then there was a change and then --
22 Q. Thank you very much I mean we are not all that interested in that
23 part. I'm more interested in the following. Can you tell us what
24 Mr. Zaric was in the 4th Detachment?
25 A. As far as I know, he was just in the staff of the 4th Detachment.
1 Q. All right. Tell me, what were you in the 4th Detachment? Did you
2 have any particular duty there?
3 A. Yes. I commanded a platoon.
4 Q. In order to clarify this for the Trial Chamber, what does a
5 platoon mean? How many people does it involve approximately?
6 A. About ten people, ten, 12. A platoon.
7 Q. Thank you very much, sir. Tell me, did you get any weapons from
8 the 4th Detachment?
9 A. I did, yes.
10 Q. Can you first tell me what you got, what kind of weapon, when you
11 became a member of the detachment?
12 A. Well, I got a Russian automatic rifle, an old one, from the Second
13 World War.
14 Q. Thank you very much. Just tell me where did you get this weapon
16 A. We all got it near Brcko. I can't remember now -- I beg your
17 pardon. We got it near Brcko.
18 Q. Was this perhaps at a military exercise?
19 A. Yes, yes. Like familiarisation with weapons and...
20 Q. Sir, can you tell us where is your house in Bosanski Samac?
21 A. Vuka Karadzica, number 27.
22 Q. It's close to the centre.
23 Q. Is it perhaps near the market?
24 A. Yes, about 50 metres away.
25 Q. Tell me now, in order to have a complete picture, this is a joint
1 yard where there are two houses actually?
2 A. Yes, yes.
3 Q. Tell me now, in addition to your house, whose is the other house
4 in that yard?
5 A. It's my mother's house.
6 THE INTERPRETER: And the interpreter did not hear the rest of the
7 answer, whose house it was.
8 MR. LAZAREVIC:
9 Q. [Interpretation] I'm sorry, the interpreters are telling us that
10 they could not hear you, that they could not fully hear your answer. So
11 you said that it was your mother's house, and tell me what did you say
12 about the second house, the other house?
13 A. My mother's house faces the street and my house is behind it.
14 Q. Tell me now, in any period, was your house or your mother's house
15 used for storing weapons?
16 A. No way. Why would any such thing be done? There was no need to
17 do that. We were all armed. I said that. We received weapons near
19 Q. Tell me now, your neighbours on the left-hand side, on the
20 right-hand side, across the street, and generally speaking down the
21 street, along the street, what was the average ethnic background of your
23 A. I'll tell you straight away, there were two Serb marriages and
24 there was a purely Croat marriage, and all the rest were Muslims,
1 Q. Tell me, does your street have a street lighting during the night?
2 A. Yes. Always. Even during the night -- during the war, during the
3 night, if there was electricity, there were always street lights on. This
4 was one of the best-lit streets.
5 Q. Among your neighbours and you said that they were predominantly
6 Bosniak --
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Were there any members of the Party of Democratic Action?
9 A. Yes. I think that 90 per cent were.
10 Q. Thank you very much. So I'm just going to put one more question
11 to you in relation to this, although you've practically answered it
12 already. At any given point in time, did you, together with Mr. Simo
13 Zaric, in that street, in front of your house, or rather in front of your
14 mother's house, did you unload boxes of military weapons from a truck and
15 carry it into your backyard?
16 A. Let me tell you, sir. I have already said what the ethnic
17 composition was in my street. Had I taken a bottle of whiskey and carried
18 it through the street and carried it into the home, into my home,
19 everybody would have seen it, everybody, even if I were carrying it in a
20 shopping bag but two trucks, two trucks, that is so absurd. First of all
21 I would not allow any such thing to happen in front of my house, and it
22 didn't happen.
23 Q. Let me just ask you for a brief answer, yes or no.
24 A. No.
25 Q. Thank you very much.
1 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honour, it's time for our usual break.
2 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. We will take our break and continue at 1250
4 --- Recess taken at 12.29 p.m.
5 --- On resuming at 12.52 p.m.
6 MR. RE: Your Honours?
7 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes?
8 MR. RE: Before Mr. Lazarevic continues, Prosecution just places
9 on the record an objection to the evidence just having been led on the
10 basis that it is contrary to the provisions of Rule 90(H) (ii) in relation
11 to the cross-examination of Mr. Nusret Hadzijusufovic at pages T 6995 to
12 6996. A contrary case of the Defence was not put to Mr. Hadzijusufovic
13 when he was cross-examined on that occasion so it infringes the rule and
14 the Prosecution formally notes its objection to that evidence being led.
15 MR. LAZAREVIC: This is just for the record, then I may need not
16 give any answer to this but if I remember correctly and I also checked
17 through the transcript, Mr. Hadzijusufovic was cross-examined in respect
18 to this fact.
19 MR. RE: That's not what I'm saying. I'm saying he was certainly
20 cross-examined but Rule 90(H)(ii) requires the cross-examining party to
21 put a contrary case, the words are shall put to the witness the nature of
22 the case of the party for whom that counsel appears which is in
23 contradiction of the evidence given by the witness. The cross-examination
24 doesn't suggest a case which is contrary it in fact suggests something
25 which could come close, something which is more mistaken rather than
1 contrary. If Your Honours look at T 6995 to T 6996 and of course the
2 difficulty with my raising it at this point is the Prosecution is of
3 course not on notice from the four lines provided in the Rule 71 summary,
4 in inverted commas, that the witness is a Muslim from Bosanski Samac, he
5 will testify on isolated incidents involving Mr. Zaric, such as
6 incarceration at the SUP building of the witness and other members of the
7 4th Detachment and the release, involvement of Mr. Zaric in their release.
8 Witness Ibrahim Salkic mentioned all these incidents in his testimony, 40
9 minutes, we received some -- I received this morning a proofing note
10 alluding to this particular incident. As a result of that I went to the
11 transcript. Until I received this on my desk at 9.00 this morning, the
12 Prosecution had no -- I had no notice that evidence was going to be led on
13 this particular point from this witness.
14 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Lazarevic, I think the Trial Chamber has
15 mentioned this before in relation to other witnesses, that you're going
16 outside the summary that was provided.
17 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes, Your Honours, if I may just say one thing,
18 these witnesses arrived here in The Hague yesterday. It was the first
19 time that I saw them was at 6.00 a.m. and I informed my colleague,
20 Mr. Weiner about the content of what -- about some information that I
21 received from the witness. I really had no much time to inform everybody
22 because --
23 JUDGE MUMBA: That's not the point. You are the Defence counsel.
24 You prepare the summaries. You are the person who decides which witness
25 will discuss what type of evidence. And that's what you did. And you
1 prepared a summary and provided the Chamber and the Prosecution, and you
2 stick to that. There is no formal application to add anything else.
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: Yes, Your Honour is right and I will go right to
4 the point.
5 JUDGE MUMBA: So that the Prosecution's objection is actually
7 MR. WEINER: I was just going to confirm what attorney Lazarevic
8 said. He did provide full summary to us last evening which was just upon
9 completion of his proofing. I had called him about dinner time and he
10 said I was going to start proofing, and to call back around 10.00 last
11 night and we did -- he did provide, as a gentleman and according to his
12 writ, full summary as to what his witness was going to be testifying
13 about, and with regard to those different facts. So I am confirming what
14 Mr. Lazarevic has said.
15 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, but the point is there is no application to the
16 Trial Chamber to add any other matters to the summary that was filed.
17 Counsel is supposed to stick to the summaries that were filed, as matters
18 which their witnesses were going to discuss. Please proceed.
19 MR. LAZAREVIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 Q. [Interpretation] Sir, let us move now to the night between the
21 16th and the 17th of April, 1992. Tell me kindly, where were you in the
22 evening hours of the 17th -- 16th of April?
23 A. I was at home. Since my mother is old and sickly, I was together
24 with her in the same room there was me, my wife and my mother. We were
25 alone that night.
1 Q. It says here that you were all three of you in one room?
2 A. Correct. Since she is sickly, she needed help.
3 Q. Thank you. Tell me, did anything happen during the night?
4 A. Yes. We were awakened, my wife and I, around 3.00 a.m. by a
6 Q. Did you get out of your home? Did you do anything about it?
7 A. No. I stayed inside.
8 Q. On the 17th of April, 1992, around noon, what was going on?
9 A. That is right. Around noon, on the 17th of April, two members of
10 paramilitary units came accompanied by one police officer wearing a beret,
11 and there was also a police vehicle. They asked me to turn over the
12 weapon that I had. I did so, and then they picked me up, put me in their
13 car and drove me to the SUP.
14 Q. Thank you. Did you show them the weapon that you received as a
15 member of the 4th Detachment?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Did you show them perhaps the licence as well for that weapon?
18 A. Yes, but they wouldn't hear anything. They just made me get into
19 the car, they took my weapon and drove me to the SUP.
20 Q. When you arrived to the SUP building, what happened next? When
21 you got out of the car outside the SUP?
22 A. They opened the boot of the car but I didn't have time to pick up
23 the weapon that I was supposed to carry into the SUP building myself,
24 because a man in a camouflage uniform came up to me and started to beat
25 me. As a result of that -- I'm sorry.
1 Q. Are you all right? Sir? Do you want a small break, perhaps ten
3 A. No, no. Please. Just let me overcome this small crisis. It
4 always gets over me when I talk about it. I received a bad beating. I
5 can show the consequences to the Chamber. My teeth, for instance. After
6 that, they took me inside and put me in a room where some detainees were
7 already locked up, some people from the 4th Detachment.
8 Q. Sir, are you able to continue?
9 A. Yes, yes. I am. I'm sorry for this little disturbance. I always
10 get a little emotional when I remember it.
11 Q. Go on, please.
12 JUDGE MUMBA: Just to the witness, if you're not feeling well and
13 you need to have a break, you should inform us. We can have a break to
14 allow you to recover.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's all right. I'm fine.
16 MR. LAZAREVIC:
17 Q. [Interpretation] Sir, you told us that you were badly beaten
18 before coming into the SUP building, and that you were locked up in a room
19 where there were more members of the 4th Detachment. Tell me, please, if
20 you can remember, who were those other members of the 4th Detachment that
21 you found imprisoned there?
22 A. Just give me a minute. Muharem Kapetanovic, Hajrudin
23 Seljakovic, Hasim Avdic, and Tadija whose surname I can't remember.
24 Q. Is it Brandic perhaps?
25 A. That's right.
1 Q. This room where you were locked up, can you remember that room and
2 describe it?
3 A. There were two box cells where other people were detained, whereas
4 we were in a small hallway, because we simply couldn't fit in there.
5 Q. You mean that room had two little box cells with bars?
6 A. Right, right.
7 Q. Tell me, how long did you remain in detention in the SUP building?
8 A. I spent the night there and was released in the morning. In fact,
9 not in the morning but in the afternoon of the next day.
10 Q. How did it come about that you were able to get out of that cell?
11 A. I don't rightly know. Zaric showed up, and this other man
12 Nikolic, and they said that members of the 4th Detachment should come out.
13 Q. Was it a policeman accompanying Zaric?
14 A. A policeman.
15 Q. Thank you. Tell me now, were you the only one who got out of the
16 SUP building at that time or were the others able to get out too?
17 A. The others --
18 Q. Just take it easy. Please answer slowly and wait for my question
19 to finish. I can see that you are a little upset. So those others that
20 you enumerated, were they also released at the same time as you were?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. When you were released, did Mr. Zaric tell you how it came about
23 that you were released? Because you are his brother-in-law; isn't that
25 A. Well, they said that members of the 4th Detachment should get
2 Q. Did Zaric ever tell you the story of how it came about in the
3 first place that you were able to get out?
4 A. I think that it was through the intervention of Colonel - what's
5 his name - Nikolic. A military man.
6 Q. You were told by Zaric that this was so, right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. After you were released, did you go back to the 4th Detachment?
9 A. No, no way. I was no longer a member of the 4th Detachment. I
10 was disarmed and I was not their member any more.
11 Q. When you say that you were disarmed, you mean that those two men
12 in the camouflage uniform and this policeman took the weapon away from
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Thank you. Tell me, what did you do afterwards?
16 A. The next day, I went to buy cigarettes, and on my way, I ran into
17 a friend who offered me a job of some sort, and the Red Cross.
18 Q. Did you accept it?
19 A. I did.
20 Q. Tell me, until when did you continue to work at the Red Cross?
21 A. I'm afraid I may be mistaken about the date of that next day. I
22 was talking about. I worked until end February, early March, when the
23 work obligation was abolished. In that period from the 1st of January,
24 1993, until the 31st of July, I worked in the company where I had been
25 employed before, and that was my work obligation, and after that period, I
1 was again sent back to the Red Cross, which again was a work obligation.
2 Q. Tell me the name of the company where you worked?
3 A. Mebos is the name of the company.
4 Q. You didn't tell me or perhaps -- that time that you spent working
5 at the Red Cross, what year was that?
6 A. 1992. I said until January, 1993.
7 Q. Thank you. That's all we wanted to hear.
8 You first worked at the Red Cross, then you return to Mebos and
9 then you went to work again in the Red Cross?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And this second spell at the Red Cross, when did it end?
12 A. The end of February, when the law of Republika Srpska on the
13 abolishment of the work obligation was adopted.
14 Q. Which year was that?
15 A. 1996.
16 Q. Thank you very much.
17 JUDGE MUMBA: Does any other counsel wish to examine this
18 witness? No? The Prosecution?
19 Cross-examined by Mr. Re:
20 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Omeranovic. David Re is my name, from the
21 Prosecution. I'm going to ask you some questions about your testimony and
22 what happened. You understand my role?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And I just ask you if you could possibly listen very carefully to
25 the question I ask and answer the question that I ask you and if anything
1 upsets you, please don't hesitate to stop or ask for a pause, but I will
2 try not in any way to upset you by reliving any of those things. Do you
3 understand that, sir? Could you answer that? I saw you nod. I think you
4 said yes.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. When -- in your evidence you said that you had been issued with
7 a -- I think an old Russian weapon. Was that a Kalashnikov?
8 A. No. It was a weapon called spagin an old weapon from the Second
9 World War.
10 Q. For those of us who aren't aware, is it similar in any way to a
12 A. No. Not at all. It is a weapon that uses pistol ammunition.
13 Q. Your house, Mr. Omeranovic, is about 50 metres or so from the
14 marketplace in Bosanski Samac, isn't it?
15 A. Exactly.
16 Q. And trucks frequently park in the vicinity of your house,
17 delivering their produce to markets, don't they?
18 A. Sir, the market is 50 metres away from me. In my street, it was
19 forbidden to park vehicles, regardless of whether they were passenger or
20 freight vehicles. You were allowed to stop but not to park, and parking
21 is defined as stopping for more than 15 minutes.
22 Q. Thank you and for the Trial Chamber's benefit I asked that
23 question in relation to the cross-examination of Mr. Nusret
24 Hadzijusufovic, at transcript page 6996 in which this was actually
25 suggested to Mr. Nusret Hadzijusufovic. Hence my comment earlier about
1 Rule 90(H)(ii). Now, sir, when you were arrested by paramilitaries, you
2 said it was on the -- I think your evidence here was that it was on the
3 17th of April, 1992. That's the morning of the takeover, wasn't it?
4 A. Yes, yes.
5 Q. The -- your arrest, you were given no reason for your arrest, were
6 you, sir?
7 A. No. Yes.
8 Q. And when you were taken to the SUP, and imprisoned there, the only
9 other people there were Muslims and Croats, weren't they?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. A moment ago, I just want to clarify something you said. You were
12 given no reason for your arrest, you said no, yes. It's a little bit
13 unclear. Were you given a reason for your arrest?
14 A. No. They didn't say anything. They didn't give me a reason.
15 Q. And in the period you were detained, no Muslims or Croats were
16 able to -- I withdraw that. Mr. Zaric came to the police station and came
17 to the door of the area where you were imprisoned and said, "I want my
18 guys out of here" or something to that effect, didn't he? Meaning members
19 of the 4th Detachment?
20 A. Yes, yes, yes.
21 Q. And in the period you were imprisoned, that day or night or so,
22 no Muslims or Croats --
23 A. Yes --
24 Q. In the period of your imprisonment or detention at the SUP, no
25 Muslims or Croats did what Mr. Zaric did, that is came to the building or
1 came to the door of the area where you were imprisoned and said, "Look, I
2 want the Muslims out or I want the Croats out," did they?
3 A. I don't understand. We were all Muslims.
4 MR. LAZAREVIC: [Previous interpretation continues] ...
5 particularly clear for the witness. I had to read it twice.
6 MR. RE: I'll rephrase it if it's not clear.
7 Q. Mr. Omeranovic, Mr. Zaric, a Serb came to the door and you just
8 agreed said, I want members of the 4th Detachment out, my guys. While
9 you were there, no Muslims or Croats came to the door, like Mr. Zaric had
10 done and said, look, I want the Muslims released or I want the Croats
11 released. That didn't happen, did it?
12 A. I don't know about that. I don't know whether anyone had come.
13 Q. I'm just asking you whether you saw it in the time you were
14 detained at the SUP, you saw any Muslims or Croats come to the door and
15 say, "I want the Muslims out or I want the Croats out." It's only
16 Mr. Zaric who was able to do that.
17 A. Sir, I have something in my pocket now. Can you see from where
18 you're standing what it is? I don't think you can see. That's -- that's
19 the same reason why I couldn't see if anyone had come to the door.
20 Q. Well, did you hear anyone? All I'm asking you if anyone else
21 while you were in prison there came asking for the release of anyone
22 else. That's all I'm asking you. What you saw, what you heard.
23 A. Yes. Other Muslims were released too, but I don't know through
24 whose intervention. All I know is that they were released.
25 Q. Can you tell us who those Muslims are? Are you able to tell us
2 A. But of course. One of them -- actually both of them are deceased.
3 One of them lived in Denmark, and I can't remember if there were any
4 others or who they were. They were released before me.
5 Q. The two who were released can you remember their names? That's
6 all I want to know.
7 A. But of course. Namik Bajzovik is the name of one of them. And
8 the other's family name is Hadzialagic but no, I can't.
9 Q. Were they members of the 4th Detachment or the JNA, sir?
10 A. No, they weren't. As far as I know, to tell you, I only knew
11 those of my platoon.
12 Q. So what you're saying is you just don't know whether they were
13 members of the JNA or the 4th Detachment because the only people you knew
14 who were in the 4th Detachment were those in your platoon? Is that what
15 you're saying?
16 A. Yes. I knew also the -- these four men who were there. I also
17 knew them.
18 Q. When these paramilitaries came and arrested you, it was the
19 paramilitary with the SDS who came to your house and arrested you, wasn't
21 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have an objection.
22 The witness has already said that it was the paramilitary units and
23 policemen who arrested him. Someone unknown to him, wearing a beret. And
24 therefore he cannot know who -- and he said he didn't know who the man
1 MR. RE: Surely the witness must be able to answer. I can refresh
2 his memory from another document but I'm just asking him to establish
3 something first.
4 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Vukovic, the question put to the witness is
5 one which the witness can answer.
6 MR. RE:
7 Q. My question to you, Mr. Omeranovic, is when you were arrested, it
8 was paramilitaries with the SDS who arrested you, wasn't it?
9 A. No. They weren't members of the SDS. Well, actually, how could I
10 have known whether they were members of the SDS? Those in the camouflage
11 uniforms and the policeman.
12 Q. Sir, you made a statement to the Office of the Prosecutor on the
13 27th of November, 1998, to Irena Martinovic as the interpreter and
14 Mr. Yves Roy and Gary Selsky as the investigators in Bosanski Samac,
15 didn't you?
16 A. Yes?
17 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have an objection.
18 It is the same thing that we had with the previous witness, Jusuf
19 Arnautovic. It's the same question. It's the statement that was taken by
20 the Prosecution in 1998 and I have never seen it. I haven't seen it to
21 this day.
22 MR. RE: I asked the witness if he made a statement. That was my
23 question. And he's already agreed he made a statement. Now, the
24 statement was of course disclosed to the Defence, particularly Mr. Zaric,
25 in the same batch as the previous witness, on the same day. Because the
1 OTP investigators were in Bosanski Samac that week. They took statements
2 from the witnesses, including some who have given evidence today. These
3 have been provided to the Defence years ago, and there was reciprocal
4 disclosure was invoked and Mr. Zaric's Defence gave us a copy of
5 Mr. Omeranovic's statement to Mr. Pisarevic. The statements have been
6 swapped to so speak and my question was only, did you make a statement.
7 The objection if any is premature.
8 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, perhaps we wait and see where the Prosecution
9 is going.
10 MR. LAZAREVIC: Maybe I can assist my colleague, Mr. David. The
11 truth is that we received this statement in 1999, a year after the
12 statement was given to the Prosecution. It was on Status Conference, I
13 remember it very well, because I was present at that point, that we raised
14 that issue before the Pre-Trial Chamber because Ms. Nancy Paterson who
15 was in charge of this case for the Prosecution at the moment why we
16 haven't been provided with nine statements that our witnesses, witnesses
17 from the list of Mr. Zaric's Defence, why we haven't been provided with
18 these nine statements. And then the Trial Chamber issued an order to the
19 Prosecution to disclose this to the Defence of Mr. Zaric, Tadic and
20 Mr. Milan Simic, and this is something that I remember very clearly. So
21 we haven't been given these statements in 1998 when they were made. It
22 was at least one year later, maybe more than that. And by that time, at
23 that Status Conference, I remember also that very well, Mr. Blagoje Simic
24 was not here in the detention unit. He didn't surrender to the Tribunal,
25 and this is what I remember very well.
1 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, thank you for the explanation.
2 MR. RE:
3 Q. You just agreed that you made this statement sir, and the
4 statement was read to you by in -- was read to you by Irena Martinovic --
5 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have made an
6 objection and we are actually request that the statements made by this
7 witness in this particular statement not be a matter of questioning
8 because they might be prejudicial for our case. We haven't seen to this
9 very day. This was the first time today that we've seen this statement
10 taken by the Prosecution back in 1998. I haven't seen it at all. Not
11 even during the break, and I still don't have it. This would be
12 irrelevant because we have never seen it and we were unable to use the
13 statements by his witness while we were questioning the Prosecution
14 witnesses and the witnesses of the Defence for Mr. Blagoje Simic, and we
15 explicitly object to the fact that the statements given by this witness in
16 this particular statement be put to the witness today during this
18 MR. RE: Your Honour the statement was disclosed to Mr. Pantelic
19 who was then acting for Mr. Milan Simic. He has a copy of it if
20 Mr. Vukovic doesn't. I can provide him with a copy of it now but it's in
21 relation to this witness, not Dr. Simic. It's not him, it's impeachment
22 possibly, I don't know I want to ask the witness whether he agrees with
23 what he said earlier, four years ago. It's not --
24 JUDGE MUMBA: What Mr. Vukovic has said and which appears to be
25 the position, Mr. -- Dr. Blagoje Simic hadn't yet been joined to this
2 MR. RE: He may well not have but that's not what I'm using this
3 statement for. I want to ask this witness about some statements he made
4 in 1998 to OTP investigators which were provided to the lawyers who
5 provided us with his own statement and ask him about that and the evidence
6 he's given here, asking him if it's the same. That's not against
7 Dr. Blagoje Simic. It's against the witness. They are different
8 purposes. And in relation to the disclosure I was saying that
9 Mr. Pantelic lead council has had the statement since 1999 and
10 Mr. Pantelic was in fact the person who provided us with this witness's
11 witness statement which was given to Mr. Pisarevic. Our records show
12 Mr. Pantelic, lead counsel for Dr. Simic provided the Prosecution with
13 Mr. Omeranovic's statement to Mr. Pisarevic taken in 1996. The lawyers
14 for Dr. Blagoje Simic have had these statements.
15 JUDGE MUMBA: No, Mr. Re, the point is Dr. Blagoje Simic was not
16 on this case and the Trial Chamber is going to allow you to use the
17 statement only in relation to Mr. Simo Zaric.
18 MR. RE: Your Honour that was all I wanted to do. Thank you.
19 Q. Mr. Omeranovic, you made the statement in 1998 and when you made
20 the statement, you -- it was read to you in the Croatian language by the
21 interpreter, Ms. Irena Martinovic.
22 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honours, just a
23 brief remark, if you allow, if Dr. Blagoje Simic is not mentioned in the
24 statement, this does not mean that it cannot prejudice his case. If the
25 SDS party is mentioned or something else. So the Prosecutor should be
1 able to use the statement but not regarding those circumstances that could
2 be prejudicial to Dr. Blagoje Simic, relating to SDS or any other issue
3 related to the accused in the relevant period.
4 MR. RE: I thought the issue in the trial was not that the SDS had
5 done things but that Dr. Simic had not.
6 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Re, I've already said that the statement will be
7 used only in relation to Mr. Simo Zaric.
8 MR. RE: I'm not arguing. Mr. Vukovic keeps popping up and down.
9 JUDGE MUMBA: So please proceed.
10 MR. RE:
11 Q. For the third time Mr. Omeranovic, the statement which you signed
12 in 1998 was read over to you by an interpreter, Ms. Martinovic, in the
13 Croatian language and as a result of her reading it to you, you signed
14 each page of the English version as it being correct, didn't you?
15 A. Sir, this was no statement. This was merely an interview. I
16 personally came to this interview. It was just an interview. There was
17 no statement there at all.
18 Q. Two interviewers, two investigators from the Office of the
19 Prosecutor, that's Mr. Selsky and Mr. Roy, that's the French-Canadian
20 gentlemen, both Canadians, came and spoke to you about the events during
21 the war, didn't they?
22 A. We talked, since I lived in Belgium for a while, and actually 20
23 years later, I wanted to refresh the knowledge of my language, I knew that
24 he was Canadian and we started speaking French and he asked me things
25 about family, privates, so it was just merely more a sort of an informal
1 talk. We actually spent more time talking about these things rather than
2 those others.
3 Q. Mr. Omeranovic, you -- the languages spoken in this conversation
4 were French, Serbian, Bosnian, Croatian, but not new Croatian. Those were
5 the languages you spoke with Mr. Selsky, Mr. Roy, and Ms. Martinovic,
6 weren't they? French, Serbian, Bosnian, Croatian, but not new Croatian?
7 A. Well, to put it frankly, I don't really remember. There isn't
8 much of a difference there any way.
9 Q. And when you were talking to them, they had a laptop and they
10 were writing down what you said on to the laptop, weren't they?
11 A. I don't know what they were noting down.
12 Q. You don't think they were writing down things about your family or
13 your experiences in Belgium when they were interviewing you about events
14 in Bosanski Samac, do you, sir?
15 A. I don't know. Probably.
16 Q. They asked you about what happened to you.
17 A. Sorry, excuse me?
18 Q. They asked you what happened to you during the war, didn't they?
19 They asked you about Dr. Simic?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. They asked you about Mr. Milan Simic, they asked you about
22 Mr. Zaric and they asked you about Mr. Tadic and they asked you about
23 Mr. Todorovic, didn't they?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And when they asked you questions --
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And when they asked you questions, they wrote down your responses
3 when they were talking to you, one of them was typing things into the
4 laptop, weren't they?
5 A. Yes, he was writing down something but it was more on a --
6 informational basis.
7 Q. That's right. Informational as to the investigation they were
8 doing conducting as to what happened in Bosanski Samac during the war, and
9 as a result of this investigational information going -- sorry, this
10 informational information going into the computer, they printed out a four
11 page document, sir, didn't they?
12 A. How should I know how many pages there were? I don't remember.
13 Q. They printed out a document and the interpreter, Ms. Martinovic,
14 read out what was on the paper to you, didn't she?
15 A. What -- well what -- she read out, I can't now remember precisely.
16 We were talking about it, to tell you.
17 Q. Sir, they took a comprehensive statement from you as to what
18 happened to you during the war, read it out to you and asked you to sign
19 it as being truthful, didn't they?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And in that statement, sir, you said that it was on the 18th that
22 the SDS, together with paramilitary troops, went around Samac and
23 collected weapons.
24 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] This has nothing to do with Mr.
25 Zaric. This has to do with the accused Blagoje Simic. The Chamber said
1 themselves that the Prosecutor can put questions based on this statement
2 exclusively in relation to issues concerning Mr. Simo Zaric. This is
3 really something that is not correct, not fair, from the side of the OTP.
4 MR. RE: The Trial Chamber said it couldn't be used against
5 Dr. Simic. That's a different concept altogether. I can ask him
6 questions about his statement, and Your Honour has told me I can. Matters
7 that go to Dr. Simic can't be used against him and I understand that. I
8 certainly won't be making any submission at the end of the case that it
9 can be. So I don't know why Mr. Vukovic keeps raising the point.
10 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes, Mr. Vukovic, the Chamber has already explained
11 it is protecting the interests of Dr. Blagoje Simic, so you can rest
12 assured that your points have been taken into account.
13 MR. VUKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
14 MR. RE:
15 Q. What you said in your statement, Mr. Omeranovic, was that it was
16 on the 18th, not the 17th, that the SDS, together with paramilitary
17 troops, went around Samac and collected weapons from some of the people,
18 and you said they came to my house and I showed them my JNA certificate
19 and they called a police car. They collected all of my weapons, that's
20 weapons, plural, and put them in the trunk of the police car. They took
21 me to this police station and, that's the SUP, and I saw a large number of
22 soldiers in different uniforms who were from the paramilitary units. In
23 front of the SUP they opened the trunk and one of the soldiers started
24 beating me when he saw the weapons. I tried to show him my certificate.
25 That's what you said in your statement on the 27th of November,
1 1998. Today you said it was the 17th that it happened. Are you mistaken
2 as to the date now that I've refreshed you with what you said in your
3 statement four years ago?
4 A. It is possible that I was mistaken about the date but to tell you
5 about the weapons, my sons were also members and their weapons were also
6 handed over.
7 Q. All right. So the paramilitaries who came, took more than one
8 weapon from your house? There were weapons plural?
9 A. There were three weapons called spagin for the three of us.
10 Q. You also say in the statement that the day after the takeover,
11 that's 16th, 17th, that's the next day, later in the morning, Simo called
12 me and said that paramilitary units had entered the city and I should not
13 leave the house. That's what you said in your statement. Is that
15 A. Probably yes. I cannot remember precisely if that's what I said.
16 Q. You also said --
17 A. Perhaps.
18 Q. Sorry, go on. You wanted to add something? If you wish?
19 A. No. There is nothing for me to add.
20 Q. You also said Simo and I hardly had any contact after this that's
21 meaning after you were released, as I was hiding and moving from house to
22 house. Is that correct?
23 A. While shelling was going on, this is what I did, but as I said, I
24 was working at the Red Cross.
25 Q. You said in your statement, I got a message from Simo that I
1 should have -- sorry, that I should have had enough strength as this
2 madness would end some day. A friend of mine came and asked me to work
3 for the Red Cross in -- in order to have easier forced labour. Later on I
4 had to perform forced labour in the trenches. Simo paid me short visits
5 during the night. I worked digging ditches and Simo did not have the
6 influence to avoid me from forced labour. Anyone that was family
7 connected to Simo Zaric had to work forced labour.
8 That's what you said to the Prosecutor in November, 1998. Is what
9 I've read to you true or correct?
10 A. Yes, sir. I did not say that he came to see me when I was digging
11 trenches, as you put it. This is not what I said. I said that this was
12 just an informational interview but they could write down whatever they
13 wanted because they did not present me with these minutes in my own
14 language, it was in English. I can't read English. Why didn't they give
15 it to me then? They could have written down that I had done anything.
16 MR. LAZAREVIC: Just to be fair to the witness, one sentence was
17 later on I had to perform forced labour in the trenches. That was one
18 sentence. After that, another sentence is Simo paid me short visits
19 during the night. The way the witness understood obviously that it was
20 Simo who paid him visit while he was digging trenches so just for that
22 MR. RE: I'm just reading exactly what the statement says which
23 the witness has already agreed he made and signed.
24 Q. Sir, I'll clarify that with you. You agree that you had to --
25 A. No, no, no.
1 Q. I just want --
2 A. This is not what I said.
3 Q. All right, sir. We will go back. I've just read to you what your
4 signed statement says. It says a friend of mine came and asked me to work
5 for the Red Cross in order to have easier forced labour, now, that's
6 correct, isn't it?
7 A. No. It is not. I said that I went out to buy cigarettes and I
8 met this friend of mine. He asked me where I was headed and I told him
9 that I was going to buy cigarettes, and then he asked me whether I should
10 like to work at the Red Cross, which I immediately accepted. And this is
11 the actual truth.
12 Q. Later on --
13 JUDGE MUMBA: Mr. Re, perhaps we have to stop here. The Trial
14 Chamber has some rulings to make.
15 The witness can be led out of the courtroom. He will continue his
16 testimony on Monday.
17 [The witness stands down]
18 JUDGE MUMBA: Yes. On the application by the Prosecution to
19 produce part of the statement by Kemal Bobic recorded in 1998 by the
20 Office of the Prosecutor's investigators, whereby he stated the
21 involvement of Naser Sejdic in his arrest, the Trial Chamber has observed
22 that during cross-examination of Kemal Bobic, Mr. Pisarevic did put the
23 question regarding Naser Sejdic's involvement in the arrest of Kemal Bobic
24 to him, to Mr. Bobic, when he was giving evidence for the Prosecution.
25 That evidence including the cross-examination of Naser Sejdic, when he
1 came to give evidence for the Defence, is sufficient. There is no need
2 for the Prosecution to produce that part of the statement -- that part of
3 the statement by Mr. Kemal Bobic into evidence.
4 On the joint Defence motion to have a military expert opinion
5 allowed, the Trial Chamber has noted the Prosecution's response and the
6 Trial Chamber has denied the motion. The reasons are that fact witness
7 testimony on the conflict in the municipalities of Odzak and Bosanski
8 Samac, the structure and operations of the JNA at the material time, the
9 separation of forces involved in the region, is sufficient. The
10 jurisprudence of the Tribunal on matters concerning the nature of the
11 conflict is that in cases where it is necessary to state whether the
12 conflict was internal or international in any region at any given period
13 relevant to the indictment involved in the trial would depend on the
14 evidence available in each case. The Trial Chamber will make findings on
15 the evidence available. It does not need an expert opinion. Besides the
16 fact witness testimony, the joint statement of admissions by the parties
17 filed in this case also sheds some light on the same issues. Dr. Andrew
18 Gow, a political scientist only gave a historical overview of the
19 operation of the JNA, paramilitary groups and the VJ in Bosnia and
20 Herzegovina. It is inaccurate that the Prosecution introduced three
21 expert witnesses through Rule 92 bis.
22 The Trial Chamber has a role in ensuring that parties offer
23 testimony on equal terms, but that does not mean that the Trial Chamber
24 should call for expert opinion even on issues that would turn on
25 eye-witness testimony, such as the identity of the parties to the armed
1 conflict at the time relevant to the indictment.
2 On the application by Mr. Pantelic to withdraw Mr. Selimir Simic
3 as a witness for Dr. Blagoje Simic, the Trial Chamber has noted the
4 response of the Prosecution but has decided to review its ruling.
5 Mr. Selimir Simic will not be withdrawn. The Trial Chamber considers his
6 evidence important even though mainly cumulative. His statement -- the
7 statement recorded under Rule 92 bis, that is D163/1, will remain on
8 record, with paragraph 20 struck out. The witness will not give viva voce
9 evidence. He will, however, come for cross-examination only by the
10 Prosecution, for one hour.
11 We shall rise and continue our proceedings on Monday.
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
13 1.52 p.m., to be reconvened on Monday,
14 the 7th day of April, 2003, at 9.00 a.m.