Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 43317

1 Tuesday, 30 August 2005

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 [The accused entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 9.06 a.m.

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, to continue with your

7 examination-in-chief. Would you let me know how much longer you will be

8 with this witness.

9 THE ACCUSED: [No interpretation].

10 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm not getting any translation.

11 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter was on the wrong channel and

12 apologises, Your Honour.

13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Please start again, Mr. Milosevic.

14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, looking at my notes,

15 Mr. Robinson, I think I will need these three days of this week to

16 complete my examination of Mr. Seselj.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Very well, Mr. Milosevic.

18 Mr. Seselj, please bear two things in mind, the interpreters:

19 don't speak too fast, and don't speak too loud.

20 Yes, start, Mr. Milosevic.


22 [Witness answered through interpreter]

23 Examined by Mr. Milosevic: [Continued]

24 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, we heard Mr. Nice allege that the

25 goal of what was happening was the expansion of territory. Tell me,

Page 43318

1 please, since you were in the Krajina, in Bosnia, did the Serbs in Krajina

2 and Bosnia respond to the threats they were facing with a view to

3 enlarging their territory?

4 A. No. That is absolutely not so. The Serbs were responding to the

5 unlawful toppling of the constitutional order. The constitutional order

6 of the then Yugoslavia did not permit the secession of federal units. In

7 the general principles of the constitution, there was the right of nations

8 to self-determination, and it was felt --

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Stop a minute, Mr. Seselj.

10 [Trial Chamber confers]

11 JUDGE BONOMY: I wonder if I might just express a view of what's

12 happening here, because I'm concerned that another three days are going to

13 be taken by this examination-in-chief, which I doubt very much is in

14 Mr. Milosevic's own best interests.

15 That was a very simple question, which you've answered already,

16 and you now embark on telling us about the constitutional order, which

17 you've told us about several times already, as have many other witnesses.

18 I ask you to reflect on whether this kind of answer is of any use to the

19 Chamber, which has heard it so often already, when it's a factual matter

20 you were asked about and you were able to give a very simple answer to it.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ask another question, Mr. Milosevic.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I will put a specific question.

23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

24 Q. Mr. Seselj, in response to one of my questions you said that when

25 you visited the Krajina you personally saw barricades, you saw the

Page 43319

1 situation on the ground. Were barricades erected in the Krajina in order

2 to expand the territory or to protect the people from the threat they were

3 facing? Please give us a very specific reply. What were the threats they

4 were facing when they erected barricades?

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I regret that the Chamber did not

6 submit to me on time a list of desirable responses. Then I could respond

7 in the way you want me to. Secondly, my responses are my own opinions.

8 JUDGE BONOMY: That is utter impertinence. I would invite you to

9 show some respect when you're dealing with questions.

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am showing you the utmost respect

11 but you are not showing respect to me as a witness. I don't know why you

12 are so nervous and angry. That is unfitting for a Judge. I have never

13 expressed anger or nervousness here, Mr. Bonomy.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, just answer the question and let us

15 -- let us get on.

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Serbs on the territory of the

17 Croatian federal unit felt existentially threatened. The newly set-up

18 Tudjman regime abolished their status as a constituent nation. They

19 revived old Ustasha fascist symbols and immediately started persecuting

20 the Serbian population. The Serbs had a strong historical memory of World

21 War II and the genocide --

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: You have answered the question.

23 Next question. We don't want a rehash of evidence that has

24 already been given, Mr. Milosevic. That is not a profitable use of the

25 Court's time. Move to an area that you have not yet dealt with. You have

Page 43320

1 dealt with these matters already.

2 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. We will not now go into the constitutional changes that were made

4 to their detriment, but at that time was it very clear or was it only a

5 vague threat to the existence of the Serbs on their territory?

6 A. There were numerous incidents in which Serbs were victims. Let me

7 remind you of the case of Miroslav Mlinar from Benkovci who was unlawfully

8 arrested and beaten up, and he barely survived the beating.

9 There were innumerable such instances all over the Croatian

10 federal unit.

11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. You have

12 answered the question. You have said that there were numerous incidents,

13 so that in your view it was not merely vague.

14 Next question.

15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

16 Q. In your opinion, then, was this defence of their own homes and

17 villages rather than an expansion of territory?

18 A. Yes. They were defending their homes and villages. In villages

19 on the Croatian territorial unit where the Serbs were in the majority, the

20 mayors and the chiefs of police were Serbs. Most Serbs were members of

21 the police.

22 On several occasions, Croatian special purpose policemen entered

23 these places to steal weapons from the police stations for -- to make sure

24 that the police in these villages did not have any serious weapons. This

25 was a cause of dissatisfaction among the Serbs and the direct conflicts

Page 43321

1 between the Serb population and the Croatian special purpose policemen.

2 There were many places where this happened, and this culminated in the

3 events in Pakrac in 1991.

4 Q. Did these conflicts show any intention on the part of the Serbs to

5 enlarge their territory?

6 A. No. The Serbs simply showed no interest in controlling territory

7 on which they were not the majority population. They didn't want any kind

8 of splitting up of the Croatian federal unit either but, feeling

9 existentially threatened, they were simply preventing Croatian special

10 purpose policemen bearing Ustasha fascist insignia from taking control

11 over their villages and towns, bearing in mind their experiences in World

12 War II when something similar happened and when a genocide was perpetrated

13 over the Serb people and they were killed en masse.

14 Q. Well, let us now consider Bosnia and Herzegovina. Were there any

15 reasons that might lead one to conclude that the Serbs in Bosnia and

16 Herzegovina were responding to the problems they were facing with a view

17 to enlarging their territory?

18 A. Yes, there were two reasons: First, the Muslim political

19 leadership established the so-called Patriotic League, and this Patriotic

20 League established its own paramilitary organisation, the so-called Green

21 Berets. This was done long before the onset of the civil war in Bosnia

22 and Herzegovina.

23 Secondly, there had already been numerous incidents. One of these

24 occurred around the 1st of March, 1992. There was a Serb wedding in the

25 old Serb church in Sarajevo, several hundred years old, one of the oldest

Page 43322

1 Serbian churches in Bosnia and Herzegovina. There was a Serb wedding

2 going on and a group of Muslims on that occasion killed the groom's

3 father, Nikola Gajdovic. This is something that alarmed Serbs all over

4 Bosnia and Herzegovina and made them realise what was in store for them

5 because in World War II part of the Muslims were allies of the Croatian

6 Ustasha fascist regime and participated in its paramilitary organisations

7 in the Ustasha movement which represented the Croatian version of the SS

8 troops.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Seselj.

10 Generally, as a rule of thumb, I am not going to allow any answer that

11 exceeds four or five sentences. As a general rule. I will exercise my

12 discretion.

13 Mr. Milosevic, I urge you to move from the general to the

14 specific. It's not -- it's not merely a question of whether the Serbs had

15 something to respond to, as this question and answer indicates. What is

16 of more relevance is whether any of these responses on the parts of the

17 Serbs related to any of the incidents in the indictment. So I urge you to

18 concentrate on that. Move from the general to the specific. We know what

19 -- as a general, what your case is, but let us see whether you have

20 evidence that will challenge the specific incidents alleged in the

21 indictment.

22 Yes, next question.

23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I am bearing in mind

24 one of the main theses presented by Mr. Nice, which is that the intention

25 was to enlarge territory. I want to show that this is absolute nonsense.

Page 43323

1 Mr. Nice's allegation is absolute nonsense.

2 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. Mr. Seselj, are you aware of the Cutileiro Plan?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Let me ask you this: Did the Serbs accept this plan?

6 A. Yes, the Serbs accepted Cutileiro's plan and this plan was drawn

7 up following the instructions of the then European Community, and it was

8 based on a territorial division of Bosnia and Herzegovina into three

9 cantons based on the ethnic make-up of the population according to the

10 census of 1991.

11 Q. Mr. Seselj, are you aware of the fact that, according to the

12 Cutileiro Plan, the Serbs were to get about 44 per cent of the territory?

13 A. Yes, more or less. I don't know whether it was 43 or 44.

14 Q. Very well. So they accepted a smaller territory than they were

15 later granted by the Dayton Accord.

16 A. Yes. Everybody accepted it; Serbs, Muslims and Croats.

17 Q. To go back to this question, is this something that shows that

18 they had no intention of enlarging their territory? They accepted what

19 the European Commission offered them --

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Stop. That's a leading question. That's a

21 leading question. It's not appropriate.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.

23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

24 Q. So you said they accepted 44 per cent. What was your attitude to

25 the Cutileiro Plan?

Page 43324












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Page 43325

1 A. I personally supported the plan, as did the Serb Radical Party to

2 which I belonged. We advocated a solution whereby the Serbs would keep

3 their status as a constituent nation in Bosnia and Herzegovina whether

4 Bosnia and Herzegovina remained in Yugoslavia or not. So what mattered

5 was the status of a constituent nation.

6 However, immediately after the adoption of the Cutileiro Plan, the

7 European Community unilaterally recognised independence of Bosnia and

8 Herzegovina, and right after that the Muslims reneged on the Cutileiro

9 Plan. On the 18th of March, 1992, the Cutileiro Plan was adopted and as

10 soon as the 6th of April, on the anniversary of the bombing of Belgrade by

11 Hitler in World War II, the independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina was

12 recognised. What a strange coincidence. And then the Muslims no longer

13 wanted the Cutileiro Plan.

14 Q. Mr. Seselj, what do you know about the attitude of other political

15 parties and groups in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and Bosnia and

16 Herzegovina to this plan?

17 A. As far as I can recall, no political party or institution rejected

18 the Cutileiro Plan until the Muslims rejected it after the proclamation of

19 the independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Something else happened.

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. You have answered the question.

21 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

22 Q. What happened, Mr. Seselj?

23 A. As soon as around the 18th of March, it was adopted by all sides -

24 I mean the Cutileiro Plan - the Serbs and Muslims began giving up control

25 over police stations in places that belonged to one or the other canton.

Page 43326

1 But as soon as the Muslims turned their backs on the Cutileiro Plan, they

2 tried to get some of these police stations back by force, police stations

3 they had handed over to the Serbs because they were on territory that was

4 to belong to a Serb canton, and that's where incidents occurred.

5 Q. This was in the spring of 1992?

6 A. It was in April 1992.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: I anticipate that very soon the interpreters are

8 going to be asking for you to slow down. Observe the pause between

9 question and answer. And you are speaking too fast, Mr. Seselj.

10 Continue, yes.

11 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

12 Q. In one of your replies you mentioned the establishment of the

13 Patriotic League and the military organisation of the Muslims, the purpose

14 of which was to take part in armed hostilities. Do you know that the 31st

15 of March, 1991, the date a full year before the armed clashes, is still a

16 holiday in the federation part of Bosnia and Herzegovina as the day of the

17 Patriotic League?

18 A. Yes, I'm aware of it.

19 Q. Well, tell me what your standpoint was with regard to the

20 Vance-Owen Plan.

21 A. The Serb Radical Party and I personally opposed the adoption of

22 the Vance-Owen Plan. You supported this plan as the president of the

23 Republic of Serbia. It was also supported by the authorities in Serbia

24 and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, but it was rejected by the

25 Republika Srpska. We opposed it because, according to that plan, Bosnia

Page 43327

1 and Herzegovina would be divided into nine cantons and Sarajevo would have

2 a special status as a separate cantonal district. Three cantons were to

3 have a Serb majority, three a Croat majority, and three a Muslim majority.

4 The problem for the Serbs was that there was no territorial contiguity

5 between these cantons. This was unacceptable to the Serbs. The

6 Vance-Owen Plan later caused fierce fighting between the Croats and the

7 Muslims because in three cantons the Muslims -- or, rather, the Croats,

8 although they numbered 17 per cent, got 25 per cent of the territory. In

9 three Croatian cantons, the Serbs did not have the absolute majority but

10 only a relative majority. So they hastened to expel from these

11 territories their former allies, the Muslims, because they wanted to have

12 territory where they would be in the majority. And this led to an even

13 more fierce war in Bosnia and Herzegovina than the one that had previously

14 been waged between the Serbs and the Muslims.

15 Q. Tell me, you said that Republika Srpska also refused that plan.

16 Do you remember that Radovan Karadzic first accepted and signed that plan

17 at negotiations in May 1993?

18 A. I think he did sign but under certain conditions. In fact, his

19 acceptance was conditional, pending the approval of the Assembly. The

20 Assembly rejected the plan at a session that you attended as well as

21 Dobrica Cosic, then president of Yugoslavia, and the Prime Minister of

22 Greece, Mitsotakis. You tried to persuade Serb deputies to accept the

23 plan, but they didn't listen to you and rejected it. I think it was

24 definitively rejected at the following session of the Assembly of

25 Republika Srpska in Bijeljina.

Page 43328

1 Q. And what do you know about the attitude of other political parties

2 and factors in the FRY to the Vance-Owen Plan? You explained the position

3 of this Radical Party.

4 A. In Serbia only the Socialist Party of Serbia accepted it. All the

5 other parties - the Democratic Party, the Serb Renewal Movement, and the

6 Serb Radical Party and all the others - rejected the Vance-Owen Plan, and

7 you can see that from the attempt to hold a pan-Serb Assembly in May 1992

8 that was supposed to be attended by all deputies of the FRY, of the

9 Republic of Serbia, of Montenegro, Republika Srpska, and Serbian Krajina.

10 The organisers had meant to exert pressure on the deputies of the

11 Assembly of Republika Srpska to accept the plan. However, all the parties

12 in Serbia refused even to attend, except the Serb Radical Party which

13 attended, but at the session we attacked the plan and then we walked out.

14 And without us, the other participants were left without a quorum, so the

15 Federal Assembly was unable to adopt a valid decision.

16 Q. Tell me, what position did you take on the conflict between the

17 authorities of the FRY and Republika Srpska that ensued?

18 A. The entire Radical Party and myself sided with the authorities of

19 Republika Srpska, opposing you and all the authorities in the FRY. First

20 of all, we held a protest rally in Loznica, and then I went to Knezina,

21 and I gathered the most prominent military commanders of the Serb army who

22 were members of the Radical Party, I proclaimed them dukes of the Radical

23 Party, and I supported the Assembly of Republika Srpska in their rejection

24 of the Vance-Owen Plan.

25 Q. Were you the only ones who did so?

Page 43329

1 A. Everybody did the same. Zoran Djindjic or, rather, the Democratic

2 Party of which he was vice-president. The president was still Dragoljub

3 Micunovic. The Serbian Renewal Movement had a lot of reservations. They

4 did not exactly support the authorities of Republika Srpska but they were

5 also against your authorities and against every position you took. I

6 can't remember the details of their public statements from the time, but

7 in any case, your Socialist Party and the authorities controlled by the

8 Socialist Party were the only ones who supported the Vance-Owen Plan.

9 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you go on, can you clarify something for

10 me. One of the answers, or part of the answer you have just given has

11 been translated, "I gathered the most prominent military commanders of the

12 Serb army who were members of the Radical Party, I proclaimed them dukes

13 of the Radical Party." Could you explain that to me?

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's a problem of your interpreters,

15 Mr. Bonomy. I proclaimed them Serb Chetnik dukes, according to the old

16 Serb tradition. The most senior in title Serb Chetnik duke is entitled to

17 bestow that title on other -- on others, to proclaim them dukes. And I

18 bestowed that title on them for their military contribution. They were

19 not really high-ranking commanders. They commanded up to one company, but

20 they were prominent fighters.

21 I don't know whether you know this: The only living Serb Chetnik

22 vojvoda, duke, Momcilo Djuic, who lived in America, proclaimed me duke in

23 1989 - that was a long time before the war - in order to preserve the

24 tradition, because if he had died before proclaiming me duke, the

25 tradition could not have been preserved. And I in my turn proclaimed 19

Page 43330

1 or 20 new Chetnik dukes. I can't remember. I don't remember many of

2 their names.

3 Among those --

4 JUDGE BONOMY: That's an adequate explanation. Thank you.

5 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note Mr. Seselj speaks too fast.

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, did you hear that? The interpreters

7 say that you speak too fast. Can you do something about that? It's

8 within your power.

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I keep trying, Mr. Robinson, but

10 sometimes I get carried away in my answer. It is quite spontaneous,

11 completely spontaneous, I assure you, but I'll keep trying.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, yes.

13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

14 Q. Mr. Seselj, what was your attitude toward the Owen-Stoltenberg

15 Plan?

16 A. We, the Serb Radicals, accepted that plan. We supported it. It

17 was also supported by all parties in Serbia. It was accepted by the

18 leadership of Republika Srpska. However, the Owen-Stoltenberg Plan was

19 rejected by the Muslim leadership. That plan was relatively good. It

20 proceeded from the premise that the three peoples in Bosnia-Herzegovina

21 were constituent peoples, that they have under their respective controls

22 cantons or provinces or entities, whatever you want to call them. I don't

23 remember what they were called in the plan itself. And according to that

24 plan, I believe that Republika Srpska got a little over 45 per cent of the

25 territory. However, the Muslims rejected that plan because they did not

Page 43331

1 want any plan that divided Bosnia and Herzegovina into three entities.

2 That plan envisaged the structuring of Bosnia and Herzegovina as something

3 between a federation and a confederation, and in some of its aspects that

4 plan coincided with the Dayton Accords that came later.

5 Q. Did I understand you correctly that the main reason for rejecting

6 that plan was that the three peoples were placed on an equal footing?

7 A. Yes, that was the main reason.

8 Q. You explain how the plan was scuttled by the rejection of the

9 Muslim side. What was the attitude of the Contact Group? What was your

10 attitude to the plan of the Contact Group?

11 A. We had our reservations towards that plan because it wanted

12 Republika Srpska to give up in advance one-third of its territory or,

13 rather, the territory that was held by the Serb army. That was over 70

14 per cent of the entire territory. That was supposed to be reduced to 49

15 per cent without any political arrangement attached. That was the most

16 problematic aspect of it in our eyes. We thought that 49 per cent was

17 otherwise good for the Serb people of Bosnia-Herzegovina. However,

18 economically speaking, they were less valuable territories, and the third

19 problem was to how to persuade Serb people living outside that chunk of

20 territory to move and go and live somewhere else. That was the main

21 problem faced by the authorities of Republika Srpska.

22 So the plan of the Contact Group did not guarantee a final

23 political solution that would be convenient to the Serb people, but it

24 wanted, nevertheless, the leadership of Republika Srpska to agree to the

25 reduction of their territory to 49 per cent.

Page 43332












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Page 43333

1 Q. What knowledge do you have about the attitude of other political

2 parties and groups in Yugoslavia to the Contact Group Plan?

3 A. At the time, if I remember correctly, your plan -- that plan was

4 unanimously supported by your party. I believe Draskovic supported it as

5 well. However, democratic parties rejected that plan as well, as did the

6 Serb Radical Party for the reasons I already stated.

7 Q. What position did you take then with the increasing tensions

8 between the authorities of the FRY and the leadership of Republika Srpska

9 that resulted from their rejection of the Contact Group Plan?

10 A. That was 1995. The relationship was already very strained. The

11 power held by your party personified by you already imposed a blockade of

12 Republika Srpska and banned any crossing of the border to Republika

13 Srpska. The blockade had been introduced even earlier, but it became even

14 stronger in 1995. You even brought international observers to monitor the

15 blockade, because you stated that the blockade itself was not sufficient,

16 that it was being violated. So your party, your authorities brought

17 international observers.

18 Q. This step we took, was that a kind of pressure to accept the

19 Contact Group Plan and continue negotiations?

20 A. Yes, that was a form of pressure of the FRY authorities --

21 MR. NICE: [Previous translation continues] ... however subtly

22 expressed. If the accused wishes to explain the objective of the course

23 he then took, he can give evidence about it. If he's not going to give

24 evidence, he can't put the proposition to a witness.

25 While I'm on feet can I just say a couple of things. First of

Page 43334

1 all, the Prosecution doesn't accept at all that this witness is incapable

2 of speaking either slowly or in a moderate volume, and it is extremely

3 difficult to follow his evidence and it's our respectful submission to the

4 Court that he shows insufficient respect either to the Court or indeed to

5 the interpreters who I know have considerable difficulty with interpreting

6 what he says.

7 The second thing I observe is that although this material can't be

8 said to be wholly irrelevant, a great deal of it's been covered in other

9 ways already through other witnesses in cross-examination or in reports or

10 in evidence in chief of one kind or another, and I'd ask the Chamber to

11 have in mind that if this accused takes six days in chief with this

12 witness, he will have been expending a significant portion of the

13 remaining time presently allotted to him for his Defence case, and I just

14 make it clear now, as I made it clear earlier by implication, that any and

15 every application for an extension of time that may be made by this

16 accused will be resisted by the Prosecution, because it is quite clear

17 that he has not made the best use of his time.

18 And my last point is that this material, if it was valuable, and

19 it's clearly well-prepared in the sense that short questions bring long

20 answers that seem to forecast the questions maybe, if this material is

21 valuable, it should have been and could have been in written form. But I

22 would invite the Chamber to require this witness to speak more slowly and

23 at a lower volume so that we can deal with him more easily.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, as to the last matter raised by the

25 Prosecution, I have said to you time and again that you are speaking too

Page 43335

1 fast and you are speaking far too loudly. I regret to say that, in my

2 view, it reflects a kind of emotional insecurity, this need to speak so

3 fast and so loudly. Why is it necessary? It's a matter within your

4 control. It creates difficulty for the interpreters, and therefore it

5 affects the efficiency of the Court if every five or ten minutes the

6 interpreters have to be asking you to speak more slowly and less loudly.

7 Mr. Milosevic, the question that you asked was obviously leading.

8 Rephrase it, and bear in mind the time that is allotted to you, and ask

9 yourself the question do you need to spend this amount of time with this

10 witness? Because that is going to be taken into consideration when you

11 make, as you have said you will, an application for an extension of time

12 when the 150 days have expired. Instead of spending another three days

13 with this witness, in my estimation you could spend two and be as

14 productive and as effective.

15 Continue.

16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I do bear in mind that

17 Mr. Seselj is an authentic witness of very important events, in fact all

18 the key events in the territories of the former Yugoslavia.

19 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

20 Q. Mr. Seselj, I will rephrase my question. The introduction of that

21 embargo was certainly a very painful measure. Tell me, why did we opt for

22 that measure?

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] First of all, I have to strenuously

24 protest because of the psychiatric qualification of emotional insecurity

25 that Mr. Robinson gave to my testimony. I believe that is extremely

Page 43336

1 inappropriate because, in psychiatry, Mr. Robinson, this qualification has

2 a very negative connotation.

3 I speak this way -- I've always spoken this way. I cannot adjust

4 to your expectations.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: I have stopped you. I've stopped you. I've

6 allowed you to comment on my qualification, my characterisation. I think

7 you have the right to. You have commented on it.

8 Now, whether that may be so or not, it is in the interest of

9 Mr. Milosevic and of everybody here, Mr. Seselj, for you to speak more

10 softly and not as fast as you have. Never mind my characterisation.

11 Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would like to answer the question

13 asked by Mr. Milosevic. I still remember it.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: What was --

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm very focused.

16 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, no. The question that he asked was a leading

17 question, I think.

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] But you've given me the floor in

19 order to answer. I have taken the --

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: "The introduction of that embargo was certainly a

21 very painful measure." And, "Why did we opt for that measure?" A comment

22 very, very briefly on that.

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That measure was adopted by the

24 authorities in the Republic of Serbia and the Federal Republic of

25 Yugoslavia because the Western powers, since in their view the leadership

Page 43337

1 of Republika Srpska was intransigent, always moved the pressure on to

2 Belgrade and insisted that Mr. Milosevic should always be an intermediary

3 between the Western powers and the leadership of Republika Srpska. They

4 asked him to support every one of their alleged peace efforts, and so on

5 and so forth.

6 As for the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, very serious sanctions

7 were imposed on the country by the Western powers, saying that they were

8 not supportive enough of peace efforts, and the government and the

9 authorities in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and in the Republic of

10 Serbia had no control over the authorities of Republika Srpska.

11 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

12 Q. Thank you, Mr. Seselj. What was your view or what is your view

13 now of the Dayton agreement?

14 A. The Serb Radical Party was against the Dayton agreement for

15 several reasons. First of all, in principle we could have agreed to

16 reduce Republika Srpska to 49 per cent of the territory of --

17 MR. NICE: What's the relevance for this trial of this witness or

18 his party's views on Dayton? If there is relevance, I shall listen to the

19 evidence with interest, but for the life of me I can't immediately see it.

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, what's the relevance?

21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, the Dayton agreement was a

22 landmark. It marked the end of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Dayton

23 agreement established Republika Srpska and the Muslim-Croat federation.

24 It is very important to know how big its value was and what the position

25 was of political factors in Yugoslavia and in Bosnia-Herzegovina on the

Page 43338

1 Dayton agreement.

2 Mr. Seselj said that his party had a negative attitude. Now I

3 want to ask him the following: Since the Dayton agreement for the Serb

4 side was more favourable than the Cutileiro Plan, I'm asking him to

5 explain. I'm not asking him. He is not the one who is answering here,

6 he's not the one who is accused here. I want him to answer why they had a

7 negative attitude towards the Cutileiro Plan and --

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute, Mr. Milosevic. Just a minute.

9 [Trial Chamber confers]

10 JUDGE ROBINSON: In the Chamber's view, it is relevant.

11 Give us your answer briefly.

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Serb Radical Party led the

13 political front of rejecting the Dayton agreement in Serbia. We were

14 followed in this by the Democratic Party and the Democratic Party of

15 Serbia. We were against the Dayton agreement because Republika Srpska did

16 not -- remained landlocked and therefore did not have any access to the

17 sea although this had been promised in the region of Debelo Brdo, behind

18 Cavtat.

19 Also, there was no guaranteed territorial link between the western

20 and the eastern part of Republika Srpska because the Serbs had to leave

21 all of Sarajevo, even Grbavica, because the status of Brcko was left to be

22 resolved later in a very perfidious way, through so-called international

23 arbitration. It was said that the inter-ethnic boundary line in the area

24 of Brcko or the district of Brcko would be resolved by arbitration.

25 However, this was a big-time deception because all of Brcko was taken out

Page 43339

1 of Republika Srpska and proclaimed an independent district in order not to

2 have any link between the eastern and western part of Republika Srpska and

3 in a future crisis the western part would completely be cut off. Those

4 were our reasons.

5 Today, the Serb Radical Party is fighting tooth and nail for

6 preserving the Dayton agreement because the international governors of

7 Bosnia-Herzegovina have already seriously trampled upon the provisions of

8 the Dayton agreement in order to turn Bosnia-Herzegovina into a unitary

9 state. According to the Dayton agreement, it is the entities that are in

10 charge of their respective armies. Now a single army has been proclaimed.

11 Now they are trying to seize the police force of Republika Srpska. There

12 is destruction of entities that is taking on -- taking place now. So that

13 the Serbs and Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina would be held hostage by the

14 international efforts not to create a Muslim state in the middle of

15 Europe. So now we Serbs are twofold victims.

16 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

17 Q. I don't understand this. Are you ascribing these weaknesses now

18 to the Dayton agreement or to the violence exerted over the Dayton

19 agreement?

20 A. I said what our position was at the time of the adoption of the

21 Dayton agreement, but now it is the international factors who are supposed

22 to safeguard and implement the Dayton agreement that are violating it the

23 most. That is the danger looming over the Serb people. And also there

24 are systematic threats against the leadership of Republika Srpska. There

25 are even some individual threats that some of them will find themselves in

Page 43340












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Page 43341

1 The Hague if they do not bow to international ultimatums, especially the

2 international governor of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Now it is Paddy Ashdown.

3 Before that it was Westendorf, and then that Austrian whatever his name

4 was.

5 Q. Now that we're talking about the Dayton agreement, Mr. Seselj, is

6 it possible to take any step in order to change the Dayton agreement

7 without the consent of --

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues] ... to delve

9 into here. Move on to another subject matter.

10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well, Mr. Robinson.

11 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

12 Q. Mr. Seselj, you mentioned the time when we first met, when we

13 first talked. Let us now look at the actual time frame, but I'm

14 interested in the contents too, the first, second, third meeting. These

15 talks of ours in terms of their timing and their substance, how do they

16 fit into this thesis of a criminal enterprise?

17 A. They absolutely cannot fit into this thesis of a criminal

18 enterprise because we had periods of cooperation --

19 MR. NICE: [Previous translation continues]... prepared. What the

20 Chamber might be assisted by is evidence of fact about the meetings and

21 then it's up to the Chamber ultimately to decide whether things fit or not

22 into a thesis of a criminal enterprise. But I must say questions of this

23 form, especially when they draw responsive answers, seem to have about

24 them a characterisation of preparation and expectation.

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, the Chamber is not going to be

Page 43342

1 helped by hearing evidence of how talks between Mr. Seselj and yourself

2 fit into the thesis of a criminal enterprise. Move Mr. Seselj to evidence

3 that relates to the indictment. General questions and general answers are

4 not going to be helpful.

5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I don't understand

6 this explanation given by Mr. Nice that the questions and answers were

7 rehearsed. I don't see what he's trying to say by that.

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: I will not go into that at all. I'm not

9 concerned about that. I am concerned about whether the question that you

10 have asked is relevant, whether it is going to be of assistance to the

11 Chamber. As formulated, it's not going to be helpful. Ask another

12 question.

13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.

14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

15 Q. Mr. Seselj, let us deal with this on a factual basis completely.

16 What did we talk about during those years throughout the war --

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: That is what did you talk about -- we are not

18 interested in what you and Mr. Seselj spoke about. Relate it to some

19 specific matter in the indictment. Just a moment.

20 [Trial Chamber confers]

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, my colleagues see what you are

22 getting at, but you haven't put the question the right way, because you

23 may elicit an answer that you talked about social matters. We're not

24 interested in that.

25 There is an allegation that Mr. Seselj, yourself, and others were

Page 43343

1 members of a joint criminal enterprise, so it may be relevant to hear what

2 kind of discussions you had that might have related to that, but in the

3 manner that you have formulated it, you may get any kind of answer. So I

4 want the question reformulated.

5 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

6 Q. Mr. Seselj, when did we meet, and what topics did we discuss?

7 A. As I've already said, the first meeting was in May 1992, when we

8 talked about the coming federal elections. The second meeting --

9 Q. Pause there for a second, Mr. Seselj. In May 1992, when we talked

10 about the coming federal elections, was the topic of Bosnia-Herzegovina,

11 Croatia, or any other such topic raised except for this particular

12 subject, the federal elections?

13 A. No. No other topics were discussed. The meeting took place for

14 about an hour or two, I cannot remember exactly, but it was devoted in its

15 entirety to the fact that, according to the instructions given by foreign

16 embassies in Belgrade and foreign intelligence agencies, Western political

17 parties refused to take part in federal elections. So it was only the

18 Serb Radical Party and your Socialist Party that were prepared to take

19 part in the federal elections. You wanted to hear my opinion, and you

20 wanted to hear whether my party would boycott the elections or not. Then

21 I told you about what we knew as to what the Western foreign intelligence

22 agencies were doing, and we said that we would take part in the elections

23 because we did recognise the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which was

24 proclaimed on the 27th of April that year.

25 Q. And what was the influence of those parties that boycotted the

Page 43344

1 elections, in view of the fact that it is the citizens who are voting in

2 the elections?

3 A. By an overwhelming majority the citizens voted in that election,

4 and the Serb Radical Party at these federal elections won about one-third

5 of the parliamentary seats in the area of Serbia and we won three

6 parliamentary seats in Montenegro.

7 Q. All right. This meeting of ours in May 1992 -- that's when it

8 took place, isn't that right?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. It pertained to the federal elections in the FRY. When did we

11 next meet, if you can remember?

12 A. I can remember most of them and with a considerable degree of

13 exactitude. The next meeting was after the elections, when you called me

14 and suggested to me that we put up Dobrica Cosic as a candidate for the

15 president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, although earlier on your

16 Socialist Party and the Democratic Party of Socialists of Montenegro were

17 in favour of Svetozar Marovic [phoen] whereas the Radicals were in favour

18 of Branko Kostic. You then told me of your proposal about Dobrica Cosic,

19 and I agreed. But you told me that Dobrica Cosic did not want to be a

20 candidate of political parties but of the Association of Serbs from

21 Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina respectively. And that's how this was

22 done, and this was accepted by our party and the Montenegrins later on as

23 well.

24 Our next contact had to do with the candidacy of Milan Panic as

25 federal Prime Minister. Milan Panic was an American businessman from

Page 43345

1 California. Our public already knew about him through the privatisation

2 of the Galenika company. It was a Saturday, I remember that very well.

3 You sent someone from the Presidency of Serbia at 11.00 in the evening to

4 see me and to tell me to come. An offer was made to me to sign a public

5 press release that you had already signed as well as Vlajko Stojiljkovic

6 as then-president of the Chamber of Commence of the Republic of Serbia,

7 that we together propose Milan Panic as a candidate. Until then I hadn't

8 heard anything bad about Milan Panic. I thought that he was a Serb

9 patriot from the far-away California. I agreed in principle, I signed the

10 press release, and already by the following morning it was all over the

11 media.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Mr. Milosevic.

13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

14 Q. Do you remember any other one of our meetings, Mr. Seselj?

15 A. As far as I can remember, there was yet another meeting that year,

16 when I was trying to persuade you that we should overthrow Milan Panic in

17 the Federal Assembly and you had many critical remarks as well. However,

18 at that time you did not want your party to take part in his overthrow so

19 at the initiative of the Serb Radical Party there was a vote and only we

20 the Serb Radicals voted in favour of his overthrow. By the following vote

21 you -- your party also voted along with us. It was a decision taken by

22 the leader of your party in parliament but I assumed you agreed to it as

23 well.

24 Our next meeting was after the December 1993 elections. I think

25 it was the beginning of 1994 in actual fact then. We talked about the new

Page 43346

1 federal Prime Minister at the time, you as president of the Socialist

2 Party of Serbia and I, president of the Serb Radical Party, although in

3 addition to that you were president of the Republic of Serbia.

4 Our position was that Milan Panic cannot remain federal Prime

5 Minister by any means, and our party had already voted on a no-confidence

6 vote for him and in favour of Radoje Kontic from Montenegro.

7 Q. Mr. Seselj, you've dealt with 1992, 1993, and 1994 now.

8 A. Now we're dealing with 1993.

9 Q. All right.

10 A. It was in December 1992 that the elections took place, so our next

11 meeting had to do with the Vance-Owen Plan.

12 Q. That's the Vance-Owen Plan. You've already explained that.

13 A. Let me just remind you of another meeting. The last time when you

14 tried to persuade me to accept the Vance-Owen Plan it was at the state

15 villa in Boticeva Street. You called me, I came, you tried to persuade

16 me, and that took a long time but you didn't manage to do so.

17 Q. All right. That's 1993.

18 A. That is May 1993.

19 Q. All right. That subject was to stop the war in

20 Bosnia-Herzegovina. That was the Vance-Owen Plan.

21 A. Yes. The subject was the Vance-Owen Plan. You were trying to

22 convince me of all the advantages of that plan. I was opposed to it, and

23 I was presenting my arguments against the plan, and we could not reach

24 agreement in any way.

25 Q. All right. Since the topic was Bosnia in the broadest sense, this

Page 43347

1 topic or, rather, this discussion of ours about the Vance-Owen Peace Plan,

2 can that be brought into the context of any kind of joint criminal

3 enterprise?

4 A. Well, I assume that the Vance-Owen Plan was a peace initiative,

5 not a criminal initiative.

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: That's inappropriate, Mr. Milosevic.

7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.

8 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

9 Q. And further, Mr. Seselj, is there anything more to say about our

10 meetings?

11 A. We had another encounter, as far as I can recall, in early

12 September 1993. The Serb Radical Party had moved to initiate the

13 replacement of the government headed by Nikola Sainovic. We had supported

14 that minority government for about six months. You tried to convince me

15 not to have the government dismissed. You proposed various forms of the

16 economic programme. However, our relations were so disrupted because of

17 the Vance-Owen Plan that we failed to reach an agreement and very soon

18 there was a fierce conflict between our two political parties.

19 Q. So this is all you can say about our meetings?

20 A. There were no further meetings until 1997. Our first next meeting

21 was in 1997 when you were elected president of the Federal Republic of

22 Yugoslavia. We, the Serb Radicals, had voted against you, but after you

23 were elected we attended a reception that you organised in the Federal

24 Assembly building on the occasion of the elections.

25 Q. So through all of these contacts of ours - I want to avoid putting

Page 43348












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Page 43349

1 a leading question - how was the problem of the civil war in Bosnia and

2 Herzegovina treated?

3 A. You continually supported every peace initiative. My party

4 supported some and rejected others. The Cutileiro Plan or the

5 Owen-Stoltenberg Plan were plans where we saw eye-to-eye more or less.

6 However, when it came to the Dayton agreement, we were on quite different

7 wavelengths, so one cannot say that we had a unified approach or a unified

8 standpoint. We, the Serb Radicals, opposed in principle to Western

9 interference in our internal affairs on the Balkans because we never

10 trusted the Western powers. We always felt they were trying to dupe us,

11 to trick us, that they were trying to do damage to the Serb people, and

12 you were always willing to negotiate.

13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.

14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

15 Q. Mr. Seselj, I hope we have clarified the relationship between

16 these alleged participants in the so-called joint criminal enterprise.

17 A. Yes, because let me remind you that this was only with relation to

18 the so-called Croatian indictment. However, in the Bosnian indictment

19 some names are different.

20 Q. Where does the difference lie between the two indictments?

21 A. Well, in the names of the officials of Republika Srpska and the

22 Republika Srpska Krajina who are mentioned.

23 Q. I didn't ask you about the names mentioned in the Bosnian

24 indictment.

25 A. That's correct.

Page 43350

1 Q. Although it's the same count number, if I remember correctly, but

2 we will check this now.

3 A. The names mentioned here are those of Radovan Karadzic, Momcilo

4 Krajisnik, Biljana Plavsic, General Ratko Mladic, and they are not

5 mentioned in the so-called Croatian indictment.

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Please say the paragraph you're reading from.

7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] 7, paragraph 7 of the so-called

8 Bosnian indictment. There are four names here that were not mentioned

9 before as participants in the so-called joint criminal enterprise.

10 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. What are these names, Mr. Seselj?

12 A. Radovan Karadzic, Momcilo Krajisnik, Biljana Plavsic, and General

13 Ratko Mladic.

14 Q. In other words, the leadership of Republika Srpska.

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. We have talked about the participants of the JCE in the list you

17 mentioned apart from these four names. Please be kind enough to tell us

18 about these names and what your attitude was to this. Let's start with

19 Radovan Karadzic.

20 A. The first time in my life that I met Radovan Karadzic was sometime

21 in the second half of March 1991. I was heading a delegation of the Serb

22 Radical Party, and we arrived in Pale. We spoke about general political

23 matters, about the situation in all Serb lands, and Radovan Karadzic was

24 especially interested in our view of the situation in Serbia after the

25 well-known 9th of March events. This was something caused by the

Page 43351

1 pro-Western political parties.

2 Our next meeting was on the 6th of May, 1992, when I arrived again

3 in Republika Srpska. I was near Novak's cave in Romanija, where there was

4 a big rally held, and I had an appointment. A TV broadcast had been

5 scheduled on TV Sarajevo, and this was again in 1991. There were

6 demonstrations by some Muslim political factors against my appearance on

7 the show, and the show was cancelled. Aleksandar Tijanic and Mirjana

8 Bobic Mojsilovic, who were hosts of the TV show, were almost lynched. I

9 visited my sister in Grbavica in Sarajevo, I visited my father's grave in

10 an area populated mainly by Muslims, and I did all this without any

11 incident although many people saw me. However, they did attack the TV

12 show hosts who had arrived from Belgrade to do a show on television

13 Sarajevo.

14 I had friendly relations with Radovan Karadzic, but he was always

15 much more friendly with Zoran Djindjic and Vojislav Kostunica than he was

16 with me, because Radovan Karadzic was jealous of our political party. We

17 had our radical political party in Serbia, and he didn't want somebody

18 there to compete with him in Republika Srpska, especially when it came to

19 patriotism. He was in a coalition with the Serbian Renewal Movement of

20 Vuk Draskovic, and when the Serb deputies were being -- were leaving the

21 Assembly because the Muslims and the Croats wanted to outvote the Serbs --

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Thank you.


24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is very important.

25 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Seselj, can I ask you, what do you understand

Page 43352

1 so incensed the Muslim political factors that they demonstrated against

2 the television broadcast?

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was well known all over the former

4 Yugoslavia as a leading Serb nationalist. Certain Muslim factors were

5 provoked by the fact that in public and categorically I asserted that

6 there was no Muslim nation, that this was an artificial nation constructed

7 by the communists and that these were in fact Serbs of the Islamic

8 religion whose origins were Serbian, who spoke the Serb language, and who

9 during the Turkish occupation converted to Islam in order to preserve

10 their social status or to rise on the social ladder. And that was what

11 incensed some Muslim political readers. As far as I can recall, they were

12 not from the government, they were opposition politicians. Their leader,

13 Muhamed Filipovic, spoke at this protest rally, as far as I can recall.

14 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

16 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

17 Q. What happened, Mr. Seselj? What was the relations -- what were

18 the relations like between the Serb deputies in the parliament of Bosnia

19 and Herzegovina in view of their party membership when there was outvoting

20 and that night session without the Serbs?

21 A. After the parliamentary elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina, a

22 firm coalition was established between the Serb Democratic Party of

23 Radovan Karadzic and the Serb Renewal Movement of Vuk Draskovic who had

24 several deputies there. Not many; three, four, five at the most. But

25 this was significant. All the Serb parties were in solidarity with each

Page 43353

1 other. These two parties left the session of the -- of the Assembly and

2 established an Assembly of the Serb people of Bosnia-Herzegovina. After

3 this, they were also joined by deputies from the reform forces, a movement

4 led by Ante Markovic, and Dragan Kalinic was their leader in the Assembly.

5 Dragan Kalinic also joined the Assembly of the Serb people and I don't

6 know how much time elapsed before he became a member of the Serb

7 Democratic Party.

8 Q. As you are talking about Radovan Karadzic now, tell me, what was

9 your cooperation about, and can it be linked in any way to Mr. Nice's

10 allegations?

11 A. Our positions were patriotic in principle. Mr. Karadzic was also

12 a Serb nationalist, and he was your ideological opponent because he was an

13 anti-communist, an anti-leftist. I can't say that your party was a

14 communist one later on, but it was a leftist party so you couldn't have

15 been on the same wavelength ideologically. Both the Serb Radical Party

16 and Radovan Karadzic's Serb Democratic Party advocated the rehabilitation

17 of the Serb Chetnik movement. Your Socialist Party was always

18 categorically against the rehabilitation of the Serb Chetnik movement.

19 Q. But I'm asking you to what extent your relations with Radovan

20 Karadzic can support allegations about some kind of, let's put it mildly,

21 antagonistic standpoint toward Muslims or Croats?

22 A. Radovan Karadzic did not have an antagonistic attitude to Muslims

23 and Croats. First of all, Radovan Karadzic warned the Muslims in time.

24 He told them not to move towards secession because it might lead to a

25 bloody conflict in which the Muslims would suffer. I can't quote him

Page 43354

1 verbatim, but that's the gist of what he said in the Assembly of

2 Bosnia-Herzegovina before independence was declared.

3 Q. Let's clarify, then. Karadzic, according to your knowledge and

4 from all your relations with him, never had a negative attitude toward

5 Muslims and Croats.

6 A. Never in principle. Later on, he had intensive cooperation with

7 the Croats throughout the war. There was a high degree of cooperation

8 between him and Boban, who was the president of the Croatian Community of

9 Herceg-Bosna, as it was called. Later on it became the Croatian Republic

10 of Herceg-Bosna, if I remember rightly. And on more than one occasion he

11 saved the Croats. The army of Republika Srpska, for example, saved the

12 Croats from Vares when there was fierce fighting there between the Muslims

13 and Croats and the Croatian civilians were encircled. He saved about

14 10.000 people.

15 In Herzegovina, in Kiseljak, in Central Bosnia and so on, they

16 cooperated.

17 Q. So the Serbs did not fight against the Croats in Bosnia.

18 A. Except for the year 1991. Before the beginning of the real war in

19 Bosnia and Herzegovina when the Croatian paramilitary forces took Western

20 Herzegovina and then there was a showdown between these paramilitary

21 forces and the JNA on the -- in the so-called Mostar theatre, later on

22 there were never any real conflicts with the Croats until 1995.

23 In 1995, there were -- there was fighting after the bombing of

24 Republika Srpska, because then the Croatian army together with the Muslim

25 army attacked on all fronts, and with the help of Western fighter planes

Page 43355

1 they took a large part of Republika Srpska.

2 Q. In connection with your relationship with Radovan Karadzic, can

3 you say anything that might indicate that either Radovan or you had a

4 negative attitude towards Muslims? Let's put the Croats aside because

5 there was no conflict with them.

6 A. Well, there was a civil war going on between the Orthodox Serbs

7 and the Muslims. We were on the side of the Orthodox Serbs. We took

8 sides in that war. He was leading Republika Srpska, I was leading a

9 nationalist Serb party.

10 In the war, of course we were supporting our own side. We were

11 rooting for our own side. We wanted our own side to win, but we never

12 despised the Muslims. There was no condescension, there was no hatred.

13 We very often pointed out the Muslims had been misused in this war against

14 the Serbs and that they were suffering fighting for foreign interests, not

15 their own.

16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Over the weekend I found some

19 documents which fit into this set of questions put to Mr. Seselj regarding

20 the activities of Mr. Karadzic from that time. As, unfortunately, I was

21 unable to copy this over the weekend, I only have the version in Serbian

22 and in English, so I will ask Mr. Seselj to read from the text in

23 Serbian --

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: No. You will seek our permission first as to

25 whether you can proceed in that way.

Page 43356












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Page 43357

1 [Trial Chamber confers]

2 MR. NICE: Might we know what category of document it is first?

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Mr. Milosevic, let us know what this is

4 about. What does it pertain to?

5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This is an order by Radovan

6 Karadzic, issued on the 19th of August, 1992. So the year is 1992. And I

7 will ask Mr. Seselj whether he knows anything about this kind of activity

8 and this kind of effort.

9 It's also been translated into English, and it's signed by Radovan

10 Karadzic because it was sent at the time to international factors as well,

11 who were already in Bosnia-Herzegovina at the time, in August 1992.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: All right. Let the English version be placed on

13 the ELMO.

14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Is it in my binder?

16 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

17 Q. No, no. I just found it over the weekend, so I will ask you to

18 look at it. On page 1, it says -- do you see this order is addressed to

19 the Main Staff of the Serbian Republic. That was its name at the time.

20 The Ministry of Interior and all security police centres.

21 A. As you know, I don't speak English, so please give me the version

22 in Serbian.

23 Q. Very well. I will give you the version in Serbian. Then I will

24 not have a copy before me, but I will ask you then to read out the most

25 important points, including this ending. But what I've underlined, as

Page 43358

1 it's a brief order, I think you'll find it easy to just read out the main

2 points.

3 My question, Mr. Seselj, is as follows: Are you aware of the

4 activities and efforts by the leadership of Republika Srpska headed by

5 Radovan Karadzic with a view to solving the questions mentioned in this

6 order? Please read it out and they can see the English on the ELMO.

7 A. Well, in this document Radovan Karadzic, as president of the

8 Serbian Republic, addresses himself to the General Staff of Republika

9 Srpska, all security service centres, and the Ministry of Interior, and he

10 says: "According to our official act or enactment of the 13th of June,

11 1992, concerning respect for international laws of war, I reiterate my

12 order." So it's not the first time he's issuing this order.

13 "That all obligations of the international humanitarian law,

14 especially the 3rd and the 4th Geneva Conventions be implemented by all

15 subjects.

16 "2. That instructions must be issued to all the soldiers and all

17 officers of the Ministry of the Interior to respect prisoners, civilians,

18 medical facilities, private and public places, the Red Cross emblem and

19 personnel and entities of the United Nations.

20 "3. That forced transfer of people and other illegal measures

21 against civilian population must be prevented. Any certificates on the

22 sale of property or written statements by refugees whereby they undertake

23 not to return are legally null and void.

24 "4. That measures be immediately taken to improve conditions in

25 all places of detention in the Serbian Republic in accordance with

Page 43359

1 recommendations given by the International Red Cross on the occasion of

2 their visit to these places, pursuant to the previous decision. All

3 prisoners of war who are not in good health, et cetera, and those who are

4 likely not to join the enemy army soon to be unilaterally released.

5 "5. To inform the International Red Cross immediately about all

6 places of detention in the Serbian Republic and to provide the

7 International Red Cross with exact and full lists of names of persons

8 detained in these places.

9 "6. That all members of the army and the police of the Serbian

10 Republic are under obligation to provide every support to the personnel of

11 the ICRC, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, and other humanitarian

12 organisations. Full safety must be provided to these persons as well as

13 access to all places of detention for prisoners of war."

14 A general instruction: "All bodies of the army and the police in

15 their respective zones of responsibility are obliged to carry out full

16 investigation in case of any suspicion or sign of violation of

17 international humanitarian rights."

18 This is -- this bears the number 01-530/92, August 1992.

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, I know you are grateful to Judge

20 Kwon who points out that this is already Defence Exhibit 190.

21 JUDGE KWON: 193.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: 193, rather.

23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I thank Mr. Kwon. I know it has

24 been exhibited, and I am presenting it now because I wanted to hear

25 Mr. Seselj's response concerning his knowledge about the efforts of

Page 43360

1 Republika Srpska leadership and especially its president, Radovan

2 Karadzic, to undertake the necessary measures to protect members of the

3 Muslim and Croat ethnic communities and all citizens regardless of

4 ethnicity.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: I want a short answer. That's the kind of

6 question that can invite a very long answer, but I want a very short

7 answer on that issue.

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I am in a position to

9 impart to you some personal knowledge that I have from talking to Radovan

10 Karadzic personally in June 1996 that is not reflected in this document.

11 I was with a delegation of the Serbian Radical Party, together with my

12 deputy Tomislav Nikolic, Mr. Poplasen, our representative for Republika

13 Srpska, Mirko Blagojevic, and some other close associates of mine. This

14 was a day-long conversation with Radovan Karadzic in Gorane, near Pale.

15 That was year 1996, the month of June. Momcilo Krajisnik, Nikola Koljevic

16 were present. Biljana Plavsic joined us later. I asked, among other

17 things --

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute. Does it relate to the question of

19 the observance of international humanitarian --

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let us hear you briefly on it.

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I asked Mr. Radovan Karadzic several

23 questions that had to do with Srebrenica. Mr. Karadzic said in no

24 uncertain terms that Serb forces had not expelled Muslim civilians. He

25 said that Serb forces had offered to Muslim civilians to remain there

Page 43361

1 under full protection. However, the representative of Muslim civilians

2 insisted that they should leave. An agreement was then signed about

3 voluntary departure of Muslim civilians. It was signed by the Muslim

4 representative, on the Serb side it was signed by Deronjic, and it was

5 co-signed by the major of the Dutch battalion.

6 He showed me this document. I don't have a copy right now, but

7 this document must exist in the archives of Republika Srpska.

8 He showed me this document signed by the Muslim representative, by

9 Deronjic, and by the Dutch major. It said that Muslims would leave of

10 their own accord with transport provided by Serb forces.

11 I next asked him about the treatment of prisoners of war. He said

12 that nobody from the political or military top leadership gave any order

13 to execute prisoners. He said that an execution occurred of 1.000

14 prisoners that they could not control. He said an investigation was under

15 way and there is indication of involvement by foreign intelligence

16 services.

17 I asked him, "What about a larger number, several thousand, maybe

18 even 8.000?" He said, "We have a figure of 1.000. However, many Muslims

19 were killed while trying to break through Serb encirclement and there were

20 armed Muslims who were killed in fighting. Some Muslims were killed in

21 their internal clashes that occurred when they started arguing about

22 whether to surrender or not."

23 He said that the total figure of all missing Muslims included,

24 according to some people, some Muslims who went missing before Srebrenica

25 fell into Serb hands. And I personally established that on the monument

Page 43362

1 to Muslims killed in Srebrenica there are names of some Muslims who -- who

2 were expelled from Montenegro in 1992 by Mile Djukanovic and they were

3 later executed by Deronjic.

4 According to Radovan Karadzic, this figure was 1.200. However,

5 all the Muslims ever killed in that area or ever gone missing in that area

6 were put together to arrive at that very large figure in order to put the

7 blame on the Serb side.

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: I see. We will adjourn for 20 minutes.

9 --- Recess taken at 10.34 a.m.

10 --- On resuming at 10.57 a.m.

11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, next question.

12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

13 Q. So, Mr. Seselj, in this order that you just quoted, it says that

14 forcible transfer and other unlawful measures against civilian population

15 should be prevented, and any certificates on the sale of property or

16 statements to the effect that refugees would not return are null and void.

17 Do you know what kind of measures were taken by the leadership and

18 by Radovan Karadzic to protect the civilian population?

19 A. Well, yes. There was a movement of Muslims accompanied by the

20 signing of various contracts on the sale of property to Serbs. Radovan

21 Karadzic intervened to prevent this on the premise that it was not an

22 expression of their free will but a result of pressure. And there were

23 problems on the ground. There were many spontaneous, unlawful activities

24 on all the three sides. That's simply something that was brought on by

25 the civil war and could not be controlled.

Page 43363

1 Radovan Karadzic kept trying, through this and similar orders, to

2 prevent this kind of thing as much as possible. Sometimes various local

3 governments would take certain decisions of their own accord, arbitrarily.

4 I already mentioned the example of Deronjic in Bratunac. There were

5 similar cases in other areas, Republika Srpska. Republika Srpska

6 authorities frequently intervened to prevent this kind of thing, and they

7 were not always successful.

8 Q. While we are still on this issue, namely your knowledge about the

9 measures taken by Radovan Karadzic, I would kindly ask you to look at one

10 letter that he sent - I have the English version, Mr. Robinson - that he

11 sent on the 8th of September, 1992, to Mrs. Ogata in UNHCR, and to the

12 president of the ICRC in Geneva. It's a three-page letter, but I will not

13 go through the entire letter with you.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues] ...

15 Mr. Milosevic, of which you are unaware?

16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It's a document that I found this

17 weekend, Mr. Robinson. I have it in English, the way it was sent to

18 Mrs. Ogata and Mr. Sommaruga, but I have the Serbian version as well,

19 signed by Radovan Karadzic, to put before the witness.

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let the English version be placed on the ELMO.

21 It does sound familiar.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could you please put the English

23 version on the ELMO, and I will mark it for you. I will highlight the

24 portions I want to look at. And please give the Serbian version to

25 Mr. Seselj.

Page 43364












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Page 43365

1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. Please, Mr. Seselj, look at the highlighted quotation on the last

3 page and read it.

4 My question relates to alleged forcible deportation that was

5 qualified as ethnic cleansing of Muslims or non-Serb civilians. Would you

6 please read the passage that I highlighted on the last page, which also

7 bears the signature of Radovan Karadzic.

8 A. Among other things, Radovan Karadzic writes the following: "On

9 the 30th of December [as interpreted] and the 1st of October, 1992, in

10 Geneva, authorised representatives of all the three parties to the

11 conflict in the former Bosnia-Herzegovina met again and adopted a

12 recommendation on The Tragic Situation Of Civilians In Bosnia And

13 Herzegovina. This recommendation was addressed to the international

14 conference on the former Yugoslavia. Item 1 of the Recommendation reads

15 as follows: Civilians who wish to do so should be allowed to leave

16 temporarily the territory controlled by one of the parties in order to go

17 to the territory controlled by another party."

18 Item 3 of the same Recommendation reads as follows: "Civilians

19 should be allowed to leave in an organised fashion under international

20 supervision, and if necessary, protection. Their safety shall be

21 guaranteed by each party in the territory that it controls."

22 Q. Mr. Seselj, is this a quotation from an agreement reached in

23 Geneva between the three parties involved in Bosnia-Herzegovina to the

24 effect that civilians should be enabled to freely move from territories

25 held by one party to territories controlled by another party?

Page 43366

1 A. Yes. This is an agreement between Serbs and Croats, with foreign

2 mediation.

3 The situation, I must say, was very chaotic on the ground. There

4 was spontaneous movements of civilians as well as expulsions, but in this

5 case the greatest problem were cases where civilians were forced to remain

6 in the territory held by a party to which they were not affiliated. For

7 instance, Muslim authorities prevented Serbs who wanted to leave Sarajevo

8 from leaving for a long time, and police -- Muslim police and paramilitary

9 organisations killed over 4.000 Serb civilians in Kazani and some other

10 places. There are cemeteries that testify to that. Also, they forced

11 civilians to dig trenches in very dangerous places.

12 The purpose of this document is to protect civilians and to

13 respect their freely expressed wish to leave the territory controlled by a

14 party which is their enemy and to move to the territory held by another

15 party which they considered to be theirs. This was followed by the

16 organisation -- organised movement of Serb civilians from Sarajevo

17 protected by international forces.

18 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I clarify one thing with you. The part that

19 you read talks about temporary movement. Can you explain that?

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, it was believed that after

21 cessation of hostilities, after the war ended, that every civilian would

22 be able to return to their home, to where they lived before. However, for

23 the duration of hostilities, civilians were deemed to be unsafe in the

24 territory controlled by a hostile party, and they had many reasons to

25 fear, because they suffered a lot from --

Page 43367

1 JUDGE BONOMY: You explained it. Thank you.

2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

3 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

4 Q. Is it mentioned that this agreement on the free movement of

5 civilians was reached by all three parties in Geneva?

6 A. Yes. And the main purpose was to provide maximum protection of

7 civilians from persecutions, killing, all sorts of suffering, et cetera.

8 Q. Can we then talk about forced deportations of civilians

9 performed --

10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, you're tiring me with these

11 leading questions which you well know to be impermissible.

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well. Very well, Mr. Robinson.

13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

14 Q. We shall move on to the next person listed together with you in

15 paragraph 7 of the Bosnian indictment. You have already said a couple of

16 words about the activities of Radovan Karadzic. The next person listed

17 here is Momcilo Krajisnik.

18 What do you know about his activities, and what were your

19 relations with him?

20 A. My relations with Momcilo Krajisnik were always better than my

21 relations with Radovan Karadzic. We were closer. They were more

22 friendly. There was more trust between us. Karadzic always preferred the

23 company of Djindjic and Kostunica to mine, whereas Krajisnik had more

24 sympathy for me and the Radical Party. However, at a certain point there

25 occurred a dispute between us.

Page 43368

1 At some rallies in Republika Srpska, I attacked the minister of

2 the interior of Republika Srpska, Momcilo Mandic, as a criminal, whereas

3 he defended him and tried to tell me that I should not attack him. This

4 Momcilo Mandic appeared in the trial testifying against Krajisnik, proving

5 that he is a criminal after all.

6 In 1996, Krajisnik wrote a letter of support to the Serb Radical

7 Party at the elections in Serbia, whereas Radovan Karadzic and Biljana

8 Plavsic were still in a firm alliance that supported the pro-Western

9 coalition called Zajedno, meaning together. Djindjic, Draskovic,

10 Kostunica and other people were in that party. So that was a clear

11 difference between the political orientation of Krajisnik on the one hand

12 and Plavsic and Karadzic on the other hand.

13 I have a good opinion of Krajisnik as a person and our relations

14 are still friendly.

15 Q. Mr. Seselj, the next person on this list is Biljana Plavsic. What

16 were your relations with Biljana Plavsic, and what can you tell us about

17 her activities from that time?

18 A. I was never friendly with Biljana Plavsic. We met several times.

19 At first those were courtesy talks, and then we moved into open hostility.

20 I attacked her publicly in 1993, when in an interview to a Belgrade

21 magazine called Nin she stated that it would not be a problem even if 5

22 million Serbs get killed in that war if only that would secure the

23 survival and freedom of the remaining 5 million Serbs. After that, I

24 stopped all communication with her.

25 As for Biljana Plavsic, at this meeting with Radovan Karadzic and

Page 43369

1 his closest associates that I had in June 1996, I spent an entire day

2 trying to persuade Radovan Karadzic not to nominate Biljana Plavsic for

3 president of Republika Srpska. I stated several arguments; that she is an

4 unstable personality, that she isn't normal, that she doesn't deserve

5 trust, that people who have no children should not occupy such positions

6 because such people are inclined to behave as if --

7 MR. NICE: [Previous translation continues] ... characteristic in

8 the observations this witness gives about various named individuals. He's

9 now turning to somebody who has appeared before the Tribunal and whose

10 case has been disposed of. It's not for me in any way to seek to defend

11 her or anybody else, but I wonder if these personal observations,

12 particularly some of the more recent ones, are appropriate and whether

13 they should be encouraged or disallowed.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, there's a delicate balance, Mr. Nice. I

15 believe Mr. Milosevic is trying to elicit evidence to counter the

16 allegation of a joint criminal enterprise, and so the witness is being

17 invited to give evidence that distances himself from these persons, and to

18 the extent that he can show that these are persons who had characteristics

19 that he didn't like or with whom he was not in favour, it may be

20 marginally relevant.

21 But, Mr. Seselj, I would invite you to -- to tone down your

22 comments of a personal nature on these persons mentioned in paragraph 7,

23 because the point, if you have one, can be made -- can be made without

24 those personal remarks.

25 Yes, next question, Mr. Milosevic. Next question.

Page 43370

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I please say something very

2 briefly?


4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Please. I think it's important.

5 Mr. Robinson, I'm not saying what I think of Biljana Plavsic today. I am

6 testifying to what I was telling Radovan Karadzic about Biljana Plavsic in

7 June 1996, before she was nominated for president of the republic. Please

8 bear that in mind.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: It shows your state of mind, I suppose.

10 But is it really relevant to your state of mind, Mr. Milosevic?

11 That's the issue, because it is you who are on trial, not Mr. Seselj, in

12 these proceedings at any rate.

13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I bear in mind, Mr. Robinson, that

14 paragraph 7 to which Mr. Seselj speaks, this paragraph 7 enumerates some

15 people as members of the joint criminal enterprise, and his testimony is

16 about the relations he had with each of them, and this shows to what

17 extent there were any relationships, let alone within a joint criminal

18 enterprise.

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: The evidence that goes to show whether Mr. Seselj

20 had or did not have some kind of a relationship, criminal as it may be,

21 with these persons is not necessarily evidence that supports your case

22 that you were not a member of this joint criminal enterprise, because

23 Mr. Seselj is not your alter-ego. Proceed.

24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj is of course not my alter

25 ego, but Mr. Seselj knows very well what the relationships were in that

Page 43371

1 time and he can tell us whether such an enterprise existed at all and what

2 kind of relationships the people enumerated in the paragraph had at all.

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Very well, Mr. Milosevic, proceed.

4 JUDGE BONOMY: Just one other comment: You should never lose

5 sight of the fact that you can readily be in a criminal enterprise with a

6 large number of people who never meet each other. The question is your

7 links with them, the essential question.

8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Bonomy, I hope that Mr. Seselj

9 has very -- has fully explained the commitment and efforts made by me

10 personally and the leadership of the Republic of Yugoslavia to accept or

11 to have accepted the peace plans and the attitude to these plans by the

12 people mentioned here. And we can see from his testimony that there were

13 strongly opposed opinions, clashing opinions on the war in

14 Bosnia-Herzegovina and these peace initiatives.

15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

16 Q. Mr. Seselj, do you believe that you have sufficiently explained

17 this relationship and the position of Biljana Plavsic?

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Don't answer that. Don't answer that.

19 Mr. Milosevic knows very well that he can't put a question like that.

20 Next question.

21 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

22 Q. What was the role of Mrs. Plavsic in the political life of

23 Republika Srpska during the war and after the war, to the best of your

24 knowledge?

25 A. She held very extremist positions during the war, insufferably

Page 43372












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Page 43373

1 extremist, even for me, and they bothered even me as a declared Serb

2 nationalist. She brought Arkan and his Serb Volunteer Guard to Bijeljina,

3 and she continued to visit him after their activities in Bijeljina and the

4 surrounding area.

5 Sometime in early 1993, Biljana Plavsic sent a letter to Zeljko

6 Raznjatovic Arkan, Mirko Jovic, and me, with a demand to send her

7 volunteers. I ignored that letter, but I suppose a copy exists in her

8 archives. And what the other two replied, I don't know. But what matters

9 here are the motives of Radovan Karadzic that drove him to nominate her

10 for president of the republic. He believed her to be more extreme than

11 himself in every way. He thought that the Western protagonists who tried

12 to eliminate him at any cost would have an even greater problem with her.

13 She was known to refuse to shake your hand, to refuse all contact with

14 you.

15 In any case, Radovan Karadzic believed that she would continue to

16 occupy her patriotic positions until the end. However, several months

17 after she was elected, Biljana Plavsic changed her political orientation

18 by 180 degrees under the influence of some Western protagonists and

19 changed her policies completely.

20 Q. The last person in this paragraph 7 is Mr. Ratko Mladic.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, before you move to Mladic.

22 You gave one example of Mrs. Plavsic's extremism, her refusal to

23 shake hands with Mr. Milosevic. Can you give me another example? That

24 is, before she changed her position, as you say, 180 degrees?

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, this has to do with

Page 43374

1 glaring facts. Biljana Plavsic made public statements to the media;

2 radio, press, television. It is generally well known that her positions

3 were extreme, very extreme. She was popularly known as the Serbian

4 Empress because of this extremism of hers. And now to remember exactly

5 what her statements were verbatim, I'm not sure I am going to present her

6 exact words, and I don't want my testimony under oath to be unreliable in

7 any way, but there is an enormous number of statements that she made to

8 that effect.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Seselj.

10 Mr. Milosevic.

11 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

12 Q. Mr. Seselj, let us deal with General Mladic as briefly as

13 possible. What was your relationship with him, and what do you know about

14 his activities during the war, and what kind of contacts did you have?

15 A. We never had any real contacts. We had one brief telephone

16 conversation while General Mladic was in the Knin Corps with the rank of

17 colonel, in November 1991. This was just a courtesy telephone

18 conversation. We never actually met then. I only met his commander,

19 General Vukovic, at that time, who secured a helicopter for me to return

20 to Knin to Belgrade via Mostar and Podgorica. I also had two chance

21 meetings with General Mladic in Belgrade in passing, as it were. As a

22 matter of courtesy, we were just introduced. He even wore civilian

23 clothes. So I did not have any communication with him.

24 However, I attacked him publicly several times, even at rallies in

25 Republika Srpska, when he disobeyed the civilian leadership. In 1995, he

Page 43375

1 -- Radovan Karadzic tried to remove him. General Mladic refused to do

2 so. He was supported by generals of the army of Republika Srpska, and

3 there was great unrest in Republika Srpska at the time, and the entire

4 Republika Srpska was in a state of crisis. I then sided with Radovan

5 Karadzic, and after that I really had no contact with General Mladic.

6 Q. Before we leave paragraph 6 of the Croatian indictment, I'm just

7 going to --

8 A. Well, we're dealing now with the so-called Bosnian indictment.

9 Q. Yes, yes, but we're going to go back to the Croatian indictment.

10 I omitted to ask you about a particular detail. You spoke about Krajina.

11 You spoke about eastern and western Slavonia. There is a reference there

12 to the Dubrovnik Republic.

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Do you know anything about this Dubrovnik Republic, and how did

15 that happen to be on this list of crimes ascribed to me? Can you say

16 anything about that?

17 A. The idea of a Republic of Dubrovnik was publicly launched by Novak

18 Kilibarda, then president of the People's Party of Montenegro in 1991.

19 Towards the end of the September or beginning of October 1991, I went to

20 visit the Dubrovnik and Herzegovina front. At that time in southern

21 Herzegovina, there was a clash between the JNA and the Croatian

22 paramilitary forces in the area of Dubrovnik. I took a plane to Podgorica

23 and as I was waiting for a vehicle to take me to Trebinje, I visited Novak

24 Kilibarda at the headquarters of the People's Party in Podgorica. Milorad

25 Albijenic [phoen] was with me, a well-known Serb political activist from

Page 43376

1 Pristina.

2 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm stopping you because I should have asked

3 Mr. Milosevic to reformulate the question. The question is too general,

4 "Do you know anything about this Dubrovnik Republic?"

5 What is it specifically that you wish to ask the witness? Because

6 a question like that just invites a long, general, meandering answer,

7 which is what we were getting. So focus the witness on a specific issue

8 in relation to the concept, the idea of a Dubrovnik Republic.

9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

10 Q. Mr. Seselj, since you know the entire political situation from

11 that time very well, this idea of a Dubrovnik Republic from that time -

12 I'm not talking about the historical aspect or any other aspect now - does

13 it have anything to do with Serbia, the leadership of Serbia, and me

14 personally?

15 A. No, not with you personally, not with the leadership of Serbia,

16 but when Novak Kilibarda launched this idea, we from the Serb Radical

17 Party supported the idea. There was a group of Serb Catholics from

18 Dubrovnik and Cavtat there too. They set up a committee for establishing

19 a Dubrovnik Republic and Nova Kilibarda supported them.

20 The Serb Radical Party in that year, 1991, did not set up its own

21 party organisation in Montenegro because we supported the People's Party

22 of Novak Kilibarda. It was only in May 1992 when, at the suggestion of

23 the American ambassador in Belgrade Kilibarda decided to boycott federal

24 elections in Montenegro, we, the Serb Radicals, in great haste organised

25 our own party branch in Montenegro and became part of the elections, and

Page 43377

1 that is when we severed all contacts with Kilibarda and his party in

2 1991. Our relationship was a cordial one and we supported his initiative

3 to renew the Republic of Dubrovnik which had had a tradition many

4 centuries long, because it was the Serb Catholics who had actually

5 established the Republic of Dubrovnik.

6 Q. It is said here that you launched this idea and advocated it in

7 the area of Montenegro.

8 A. The political milieu of only one political party in Montenegro,

9 the People's Party.

10 Q. So at that time the People's Party was not in power in Montenegro.

11 A. No, it wasn't. It was an opposition party.

12 Q. An opposition party to the DPS or, rather, the Democratic Party of

13 Socialists of Momir Bulatovic in which Mile Djukanovic was Prime Minister

14 and so on and so forth?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Momir Bulatovic, Mile Djukanovic, did they have anything to do

17 with this idea of the Dubrovnik Republic?

18 A. I never heard any one of the two of them advocating the Dubrovnik

19 Republic. I never heard anyone else do that except for Novak Kilibarda,

20 and we, the Serb Radicals, supported him in that.

21 Q. Please look at paragraph 26 now, which is rather long. It's in

22 the Croatian part. It's on page 5. It has subparagraphs (a) through (l).

23 In connection with that, I'm going to put a few questions to you. What it

24 says here is the following. We're looking at paragraph 26 and the ways

25 are listed in which allegedly the joint criminal enterprise was carried

Page 43378

1 out, and you took part in it too, purportedly.

2 So how was it carried out? It says: "Slobodan Milosevic, acting

3 alone and in concert with other members of the joint criminal enterprise

4 -" and we've just commented upon all of them now, all of those that are

5 listed - "participated in the joint criminal enterprise in the following

6 ways ..."

7 And then in subparagraph (a), it says: "Provided direction and

8 assistance to the political leadership of the SAO SBWS, the SAO Western

9 Slavonia, SAO Krajina and RSK on the take-over of these areas and the

10 subsequent forcible removal of the Croat and other non-Serb population."

11 Mr. Seselj, a few moments ago you mentioned who was in power in

12 those areas. You mentioned Martic and Babic, Dokmanovic, Sergej

13 Veselinovic, then Zdravko Zecevic. So an entire series of Serbs were in

14 power in these municipalities. Is that a fact?

15 A. Those Serbs came to power through elections, local elections, in

16 the territory of the Croatian federal unit.

17 Q. All right. But if somebody was already in power, could he take

18 power?

19 A. No, but could expand his own authority.

20 Q. All right. Was it someone from Serbia who appointed these people

21 to govern in Croatia or were they already in power in Croatia when the

22 Serbs in Croatia were imperiled by what the Croatian regime was doing?

23 A. Most of these people were already in power. For example, Slavko

24 Dokmanovic was already the mayor of Vukovar before the armed hostilities

25 started in Vukovar.

Page 43379

1 Q. What about Babic?

2 A. Babic was president of the Knin municipality. Every one of them

3 was either head of a municipality or head of a police in a municipality,

4 so they were already officials of the local government.

5 Q. At the time when local tensions and conflicts started?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Can it be said, then, that it was anyone that assisted them in

8 taking over power?

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, if I formed the view that you are

10 being provocative in asking these leading questions time and again, I will

11 adopt a certain measure. Reformulate the question.

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, this is one of the key

13 questions here, because it says here, "assisted people in the take-over of

14 these areas."

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: I have stopped you because that is not the issue.

16 The issue is the way the question was put, "Can it be said, then, that it

17 was anyone that assisted them in taking over power?" The witness is to

18 give his evidence unaided.

19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.

20 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

21 Q. Mr. Seselj, when did these people come to power in these

22 municipalities?

23 A. Immediately after these elections that were held in the federal

24 unit of Croatia. As far as I remember, it was the end of April, beginning

25 of May 1990, if my memory serves me correctly. That is to say before the

Page 43380












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Page 43381

1 hostilities broke out, they were already in power in all these

2 municipalities.

3 Q. All right. Now, the second part of subparagraph (a) says that

4 they were given assistance in the subsequent forcible removal of the Croat

5 and other non-Serb population. Did they forcibly remove the Croat and

6 other non-Serb population, as is mentioned here?

7 A. No, absolutely not. I remember a particular case, the village of

8 Kijevo in the municipality of Knin. When I was there at the end of 1991,

9 I had my own personal pistol on me. We went through those -- through that

10 village -- to that village through Serb village -- or, rather, we had to

11 go through the village of Kijevo in order to get to other Serbian

12 villages.

13 Matic's police told us to give the policemen our own weapons

14 before entering the village so that some local policemen would not stop us

15 there and find that we had weapons on our persons. All of that shows that

16 Matic's police acted very delicately, trying to avoid any kind of

17 incident.

18 We all handed over our weapons, we peacefully went through this

19 purely Croat village of Kijevo and visited all the other Serb-populated

20 villages. However, when the hostilities broke out --

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, just remind me, I'm trying to

22 remember, what post did you occupy at that time? This is 1991 -- 1991,

23 1992.

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At that time, I was president of an

25 opposition party, the Serb Radical Party, and I was the only MP of my

Page 43382

1 party in the Assembly of Serbia, the one and only one. At that time we

2 were still a small political party.

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: And exactly how did you acquire information and

4 knowledge about these matters?

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I was there. I was in Knin.

6 I'm telling you about my own experience.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Very well, yes. Mr. Milosevic.

8 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

9 Q. All right. We established when they came to power, and we

10 established how they came to power, and we established when.

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Before the conflict in the elections in 1990. And when the HDZ

13 came to power, did the new government try to disempower the Serbs in the

14 Krajina at the time?

15 A. Yes. Through the break-ins of their own specialists in police

16 stations that were commanded by Serbs and where most policemen were ethnic

17 Serbs. They seized their weapons and their warehouses. That was a

18 sufficient signal for the Serbs that a great evil was in the making for

19 them.

20 Q. What was the reaction of the local population?

21 A. There were demonstrations. Civilians opposed Croatian

22 specialists, and there were conflicts. There was a conflict in Pakrac

23 sometime in the beginning of March 1991. Then there was the conflict in

24 Plitvice and in many other places.

25 Q. Mr. Seselj, it is said about you, in addition to what we've

Page 43383

1 already said, that you openly espoused the concept of a Greater Serbia,

2 but let's leave that aside, but it also says --

3 THE INTERPRETER: Could the interpreters please have a reference,

4 and it is too fast anyway, thank you.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, the interpreters are asking for a

6 reference. Were you then referring to a particular paragraph in the

7 indictment?

8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, 22. Paragraph 22, and it says,

9 in addition to what we've already elaborated, that is to say Greater

10 Serbia, it says: "... by violence and other unlawful means, and actively

11 participated in war propaganda and spreading inter-ethnic hatred."

12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

13 Q. So going back to that time, did you advocate violence and other

14 unlawful means and actively participate in war propaganda and spreading

15 inter-ethnic hatred? In the context of these events, not generally

16 speaking.

17 A. There has to be a clear distinction between two matters, that is

18 the concept of a Greater Serbia and the civil war that took place. The

19 concept of a Greater Serbia cannot be realised without us convincing

20 previously Serb Catholics and Serb Muslims that we are one and the same

21 people. We had to make every effort there to oppose the 100-year-long

22 policy of the Vatican and the 40-year-old policy of the Communist Party.

23 They invented the Croatian people and the Muslim people within the Serb

24 ethnic being.

25 And secondly, the war that took place was not caused by the Serbs.

Page 43384

1 The war was caused by those who wanted to break up Yugoslavia.

2 I supported armed efforts made by the Yugoslav People's Army to

3 defeat paramilitary formations of Tudjman's regime.

4 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm not sure I understand what is on the

5 transcript. "They invented the Croatian people and the Muslim people

6 within this Serb ethnic being."

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The interpretation is incorrect.

8 This is about the Croatian nation and the Muslim nation. To explain this

9 to you, let me remind you of the example of France. The ethnic substrate

10 there has created a unified nation. In our parts, the process went in the

11 opposite direction. On the Serbian ethnic substrate, based on religious

12 differences, three nations were formed and the Serbs were reduced to just

13 the Orthodox Serbs, and they were separated from the Catholic Serbs and

14 the Muslim Serbs.

15 I hope this is clearer to you. This is unprecedented anywhere in

16 the whole world. Everywhere else, the Muslims are simply a religion.

17 Nowhere are they a separate nation. I hope that is clearer to you now.

18 Of course, everyone who comes in from the outside finds this very odd.

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, next question.

20 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

21 Q. You haven't answered a part of my question, the part where it says

22 that acting as part of this alleged joint criminal enterprise you actively

23 participated in war propaganda and spreading inter-ethnic hatred, as it

24 says here.

25 A. First, the question arises of what kind of war propaganda this

Page 43385

1 was. Was it institutionalised war propaganda behind which there is a

2 state institution and I participated in that? Well, if that's what's

3 alleged, my answer is a categorical no. However, I do admit that many of

4 my statements as an individual politician and as the president of the Serb

5 Radical Party appeared to many to resemble warmongering. This may have

6 been the case, but it had nothing to do with some kind of organised

7 institutionalised propaganda.

8 Secondly, the spreading of inter-ethnic hatred is a very broad

9 concept. Someone could say that I'm spreading inter-ethnic hatred when I

10 say that the Muslims are not a separate nation. I am basing my

11 statements, however, on scientific facts, so I feel it is not spreading

12 inter-ethnic hatred while other people feel it is because I am attacking

13 the fundamental -- the foundation of that nation.

14 In the case of the Croats, I attacked only the Croatian Ustasha

15 without any limitations. But as for most Croats, I attempted to prove

16 that they are actually Serbs, because what happened was that when the Serb

17 nation was split up, the new Croatian nation was composed of three

18 segments, three different ethnic substrates; Original Croats who speak the

19 Chakavian language, original Slovenes who speak the Kajkavian language and

20 they live in the so-called Croatian Zagorje region, and the original Serb

21 Catholics who speak the Shtokavian language, and that is the Serbian

22 language. So I base everything I say on scientific arguments.

23 My speeches may have been fiery, they're always fiery.

24 Q. Did you spread hatred in that way?

25 A. No, I did not spread hatred. I spread love. I was trying to

Page 43386

1 convince people who had fallen away from the Serb nation that they were

2 actually Serbs and that we had to renew brotherhood and unity between

3 Serbs of the Orthodox, Croat, and Muslim religions and that we had to have

4 a joint state.

5 THE INTERPRETER: Could there be a pause between question and

6 answer, please.

7 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

8 Q. According to the then --

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Look at the transcript, Mr. Milosevic. The

10 interpreters are asking for a pause between question and answer.

11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: It is becoming unbearable. And I'm not satisfied

13 that you are trying hard enough, Mr. Milosevic, and Mr. Seselj.

14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I think everything has been

15 interpreted now, so I will repeat my question and I will speak as slowly

16 as possible. Mr. Seselj -- or, rather, slowly enough for the

17 interpreters.

18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

19 Q. In view of this organising on the territory of the Krajina,

20 Eastern Slavonia, Western Slavonia, Knin, and so on, according to the then

21 regulations beginning with the constitution, was it permissible for

22 municipalities to associate?

23 A. Yes, all the constitutions of the former Yugoslavia permitted the

24 association of municipalities. The only discrepancy was this independent

25 formation of autonomous provinces, but this was actually a response to the

Page 43387

1 previous violations of the constitution by the authorities in Croatia and

2 later Bosnia and Herzegovina.

3 Q. According to the then regulation that you are familiar with, what

4 was the basis and the purpose of the association of municipalities?

5 A. Municipalities could associate to form regional communities in

6 order to pursue various interests which could be of an economic nature, a

7 social nature, a political nature. So these were various interests, but

8 this was usually done by neighbouring municipalities, and by associating

9 they could achieve certain results easier, and they could save their

10 resources in that way.

11 Q. Well, tell me now, the leaderships we have just mentioned in this

12 paragraph that we have quoted, did they forcibly remove the non-Serb

13 population, and did I assist them in that?

14 A. No. There was no organised forcible removal of the Croatian and

15 other non-Serb population. There was a certain spontaneous movement of

16 the population. There may have been individual inter-ethnic incidents,

17 but many Croatian officials invited the Croatian population --

18 THE INTERPRETER: Or, rather, many Serb politicians, interpreter's

19 apology.

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- invited them to stay, promising

21 them protection and so on and so forth, and this was reported in the

22 media.

23 But there was another phenomenon: The Croatian population began

24 to arm themselves illegally in these municipalities. They were armed by

25 Tudjman's government. I can give you a specific example.

Page 43388












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43389

1 A few days ago I testified about my participation in the peaceful

2 demonstration, the march on Plitvice. On that day when we had the march

3 to Plitvice and -- well, it may be exaggerated to call them clashes with

4 JNA units, but we did meet opposition from the JNA, and I returned to

5 Knin. On that day, Martic's police, carrying out a routine check of some

6 Croat houses of Croats living in Knin, and they found new automatic rifles

7 produced in Hungary concealed in shipments of flour, in sacks of flour.

8 One of these automatic rifles of Hungarian origin Milan Martic gave to me.

9 He as the chief of police gave it to me as a sign of gratitude for

10 contributing to making this march a success, making it peaceful while

11 achieving its goals.

12 I had this rifle for some time. It's a Kalashnikov, and it's of

13 lesser quality than our rifles.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues] ...

15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

16 Q. Tell me, now, as we are now speaking of aid, what was the reason

17 for providing aid to the Krajina Serbs by the Republic of Serbia, and what

18 did this aid consist in?

19 A. Well, it was political assistance and material assistance. When I

20 say material, I refer to food and money. Political support was provided

21 because Serbia wanted the Serbs living across the Danube to be protected

22 in their vital and existential rights.

23 Q. Subparagraph (b) of this paragraph reads as follows: Provided all

24 kinds of assistance to "regular and irregular military forces necessary

25 for the take-over of these areas and the subsequent forcible removal of

Page 43390

1 the Croat and other non-Serb population."

2 A. Serbia did not provide any kind of support to any irregular

3 military forces, because with the few rare exceptions I have mentioned

4 referring to the Serb Volunteer Guard, the White Eagles, and so on and so

5 forth, it was exclusively the regular military forces operating there; the

6 JNA, the local police, and the Territorial Defence under the control of

7 the JNA. Serbia could support only the JNA, as it was obliged to do under

8 the still valid Yugoslav constitution of the time.

9 Secondly, the JNA, which was the only regular armed force

10 operating on the ground there, did not participate in any forcible removal

11 of the Croat and other non-Serb population.

12 Yes, there were individual incidents, but this was never the goal

13 of the JNA and never were orders issued by the higher commands of the JNA

14 to act in this way, or at least, I never heard of any such orders. And we

15 have seen what the structure of the top leadership of the JNA was and how

16 many Croats, Muslims, Slovenes, and others were there. So it was not

17 possible for the JNA to issue an order to have the Croatian population

18 expelled.

19 Q. I'm pausing to wait for the end of the interpretation before I

20 put my question to you, Mr. Seselj.

21 You have explained what the regular forces were. Which were the

22 irregular formations in the area?

23 A. The irregular formations were those of the so-called National

24 Guard Corps of Croatia, established by Franjo Tudjman. They were

25 colloquial called the Zengas. This was the main paramilitary formation.

Page 43391

1 The Croats had some other spontaneous groups or those under the control of

2 the paramilitary. There was the Glavas -- there were the Glavas units,

3 they were openly Ustasha; then there were the formations of the Croatian

4 Party of Rights, led by Dobroslav Paraga. I cannot remember the names of

5 all these groups.

6 Q. Mr. Seselj, I'm referring now only to your own experience and your

7 personal knowledge. Were the Krajina Serbs the ones who were doing the

8 attacking or were they the ones who came under attack?

9 A. They were always under attack. The regime of Franjo Tudjman

10 wanted to return the territory on which they had been living for centuries

11 under his control and the Krajina Serbs opposed this.

12 Q. We will not go into expert opinions, but viewed legally, were they

13 justified in their demands?

14 A. Legally, their efforts were in line with the provisions of the

15 constitution and the legislation. This was done with a view to preserving

16 Yugoslavia. Tudjman's separatist moves were absolutely

17 counter-constitutional. The JNA was acting in accordance with the

18 constitution, and those fighting them on the territory of the Croatian

19 federal unit were violating the constitution, and they were subject to

20 criminal prosecution, because there was a crime of armed rebellion. And

21 the JNA even tried some cases but didn't manage to complete the trials.

22 You may remember the arrest of General Martin Spegelj and the

23 attempts to have him court-martialed in Zagreb, the arrests of some

24 other --

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, next question.

Page 43392

1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. Mr. Seselj, let us now deal very specifically with this question.

3 To whom in the Krajina did the Republic of Serbia provide material and

4 other support, and why?

5 A. The Republic of Serbia provided financial and material assistance

6 only to the legal leadership of the Republic of Srpska Krajina to help

7 them survive, because the Croats were already receiving a lot of

8 assistance from the Western powers.

9 Q. I will now quote subparagraph (c) of this same paragraph, which

10 reads: "Directed organs of the government of the Republic of Serbia to

11 create armed forces separate from the federal armed forces to --" this is

12 what it says in this text here. I hope you have it before you.

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. "... armed forces -" the Republic of Serbia - "in order to engage

15 in combat activities outside the Republic of Serbia, in particular in the

16 said areas in Croatia and the subsequent forcible removal of the Croat and

17 other non-Serb population."

18 A. Serbia never had its armed forces. On the territory of Serbia,

19 there was the Territorial Defence. It was subordinated to the JNA and had

20 no independent role. All those from Serbia who participated in armed

21 activities on the territory of the Croatian federal units were in the JNA.

22 There were also volunteers. In Serbia, they were professional policemen.

23 They wanted to be volunteers in the Republic of Srpska Krajina in any of

24 these autonomous provinces. They would then ask for permission from their

25 higher organs and go there as volunteers while their professional rights

Page 43393

1 from their employment were protected, as were the professional rights of

2 the mobilised reservists of the JNA.

3 Q. You have answered this question indirectly, but I have to spell it

4 out for you: Did the Republic of Serbia ever form any armed forces apart

5 from the JNA?

6 A. No, never. Never did the Republic of Serbia form any armed forces

7 separate from the federal forces, although there were some such

8 initiatives from the opposition parties. In the summer of 1991, the Serb

9 Renewal Movement and another party intensively advocated the formation of

10 a Serbian army. I had a political debate on television with Zoran

11 Djindjic, and we clashed about this point precisely because he was

12 advocating the formation of a Serbian army. I opposed this, and I won in

13 this debate. I supported the JNA as the only regular armed force.

14 Q. As far as you know, was there ever a plan in Serbia to form armed

15 forces separate from the Yugoslav armed forces?

16 A. The government never had any such plan. As I said, it was

17 individuals and opposition political parties who advocated such ideas.

18 Q. In subparagraph (d) of this same paragraph, it says:

19 "Participated in the formation, financing, supply, support and direction

20 of special forces of the Republic of Serbia Ministry of Internal Affairs.

21 These special forces were created and supported to assist in the execution

22 of the purpose of the joint criminal enterprise through the commission of

23 crimes which are in violation ..." and so on.

24 My question is: What do you know about the special forces of the

25 Ministry of Internal Affairs? Where and why were they formed? Who did

Page 43394

1 they -- were they composed of, and so on?

2 A. During the war, there was only one special unit of the Ministry of

3 the Interior of Serbia, the so-called special anti-terrorist unit

4 established in the early 1980s. It was needed because of the events in

5 Kosovo and Metohija.

6 At that time, all federal units started establishing their special

7 anti-terrorist units, and all of these units were involved in suppressing

8 the Albanian separatist insurgency in Kosovo and Metohija from Slovenia,

9 Macedonia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, et cetera, and the Serb special

10 anti-terrorist unit was formed at the same time.

11 To the best of my knowledge, this special anti-terrorist unit was

12 never engaged as such in the wars on the territory of Croatia or Bosnia

13 and Herzegovina. It was only after 1996 that another special unit was set

14 up of the state security department. It was called Special Operations

15 Unit, and they were popularly known as Red Berets.

16 Q. You said that unit, JSO, Special Operations Unit, was established

17 in 1996.

18 A. To the best of my recollection.

19 Q. Did it include some individuals who had some experience in armed

20 conflicts in various areas of the former Yugoslavia?

21 A. That was precisely the idea, to gather in that unit fighters who

22 were tested and tried, the best fighters, to concentrate them in that unit

23 which had about 150 members, because it was believed that such a unit

24 would be needed in the future trials that awaited our country.

25 Some former members of Arkan's Volunteers Guard were included in

Page 43395

1 that unit, as well as some members of -- some former members of Martic's

2 police.

3 I know for a fact that some volunteers of the Serb Radical Party

4 received an offer to become members of that unit, and many of them told me

5 about it, saying at the same time they would reject the offer because at

6 the time the Serb Radical Party was fiercely opposing your regime led by

7 your party.

8 Q. Very well. If, because some members of the JSO fought in Krajina

9 and Bosnia and Herzegovina before the JSO itself was established, can it

10 be concluded then that the JSO as such was involved in the wars? Because

11 by the same token we could say --

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: No. That's not to be answered. And by this

13 time, Mr. Seselj, you should know, you should be able to recognise the

14 impermissible questions.

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I submit to your will, Mr. Robinson,

16 from day one, even when I'm not very happy to do so, but I always abide.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic.

18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

19 Q. Mr. Seselj, you said this unit for special operations was set up

20 in 1996. Do you have any explanation why the engagement of that unit

21 outside of Serbia is mentioned even before it was formed?

22 A. I think that confusion is due to the use of the term "Red Berets,"

23 because various units that took part in these wars called themselves Red

24 Berets. Sometimes the soldiers who had completed the training course in

25 the training centre of Captain Dragan were called Red Berets. Some units

Page 43396












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 43397

1 wore red berets as part of their uniform and the people commonly called

2 them Red Berets.

3 I saw two judgements of this Tribunal, against Blagojevic and

4 against Dragan Jokic, and I read that the VRS had a reconnaissance squad

5 called Red Berets. You can find that in one of your judgements,

6 Mr. Robinson. So various organisations, various groups were referred to

7 as Red Berets.

8 This unit of the state security service became known among people

9 and among its own members as Red Berets. It was their popular name. I

10 think that's what's creating the confusion. However, all of those who had

11 previous war experience were proud of it, and they believed they were

12 fighting for Serb national interests, and they did not see any difference

13 between their previous engagements in other units and their new role in

14 the Special Operations Unit, because we are and we will remain one people,

15 no matter how hard Western powers may try to divide us.

16 Q. I will now quote to you a sentence that is unclear to me but maybe

17 you will understand. It's subparagraph (e) of the same paragraph 26:

18 "Participated in providing financial, logistical and political support and

19 direction --" Let me check. Yes: "... providing financial, logistical

20 and political support and direction to Serbian irregular forces and

21 paramilitaries. Such support was given in furtherance of the joint

22 criminal enterprise through the commission of crimes which are in

23 violation ..." et cetera, et cetera. Let me not read the rest.

24 Tell me as briefly as you can, what was the attitude of the

25 authorities in Serbia to paramilitary units?

Page 43398

1 A. Serbian authorities were emphatically against paramilitary

2 formations and tried to suppress them. I remember very well because I was

3 a deputy in the Assembly of the Republic of Serbia at the time.

4 We had a very bad legislation inherited from previous times in

5 that area. Possession of weapons did not used to be a crime. It was a

6 misdemeanour, subject to a fine, and the strictest penalty was

7 confiscation.

8 The Serbian Assembly adopted a special law in 1992, according to

9 which any illegal possession of a weapon was a serious crime, subject to

10 three years' imprisonment and more. Movement was prohibited to all

11 uniformed people who were not members of the JNA. That law was enacted in

12 1992. Until then, there was no such legal protection, so that members of

13 paramilitary units moved around Serbia wearing uniforms, and illegal

14 possession of weapons was treated until then as a misdemeanour, subject to

15 a very mild penalty.

16 Q. Let me apologise in advance because I don't want you to think that

17 I'm asking you the same question over and over again. It is simply that

18 an allegation is reiterated in subparagraph (f), which reads:

19 "Participated in the planning and preparation of the take-over of the SAO

20 SBWS, the SAO Western Slavonia, the SAO Krajina and the Dubrovnik Republic

21 and the subsequent forcible removal of the Croat and other non-Serb

22 population."

23 This is a special subparagraph. You have already given some

24 explanations, but I have to ask you again: Did I participate in the

25 take-over of power in the said areas, and what do you know about this

Page 43399

1 alleged removal of non-Serb population and my role therein?

2 A. First of all, you could not possibly participate in the take-over

3 of power. We established that. Second, you were not in a position to

4 take part in the command over the JNA, and you could not possibly

5 participate in the removal of the Croat and non-Serb population.

6 I visited those theatres of war, and I saw with my own eyes the

7 things I'm going to tell you about.

8 The population from the area of Dubrovnik was joined together with

9 Croatian paramilitary units that had been fighting the JNA. Take Cavtat,

10 a town south of Dubrovnik. Croat paramilitary formations abandoned Cavtat

11 without a fight. Croat civilians remained there to live. The JNA

12 supplied them with food and other necessities. There was no forcible

13 removal or any kind of removal. It is a rather high concentration of the

14 civilian population, Croat Catholic population, and still the JNA tried to

15 help them. There are many other instances of villages that were treated

16 by the JNA in the same way.

17 The Croatian population was removed only in those areas where

18 Croatian paramilitary units or the Croatian government organised the

19 departure of their own civilians.

20 Q. Thank you, Mr. Seselj. Look now at subparagraph (g), which reads:

21 "Exerted effective control or substantial influence over the JNA which

22 participated in the planning, preparation and execution of the forcible

23 removal of the Croat and other non-Serb population from..." all the areas

24 already enumerated; Western Slavonia, Western Srem, Krajina, et cetera.

25 Before I ask you how I exerted that effective control, I have to

Page 43400

1 ask you, did the JNA participate in the planning and execution of the

2 forcible removal?

3 A. No, the JNA did not. Its units and troops were not ordered to do

4 so. However, you could not exert any control over the JNA. Throughout

5 1991, all the way until the Vance-Owen Plan -- correction, until the Vance

6 Plan was accepted, and this is something that General Kadijevic explained

7 in his book that he published after he left his post, the plan was to

8 remove all the political leaderships from all the federal units; Serbia,

9 Croatia, Slovenia, et cetera. It was the army plan. The army wanted to

10 take over power, and General Kadijevic thought the Western powers would

11 approve. However, when he lost that hope, he went to Moscow, seeking

12 Russian support, and the Russian Marshal Jazov told me several years later

13 about his conversations with Veljko Kadijevic. Veljko Kadijevic asked for

14 an intervention by the Russian army, and the Russian Marshal Jazov

15 replied to him that the army of the Soviet Union could not interfere

16 because they are not backed by the appropriate decisions of their

17 leadership.

18 Thus Veljko Kadijevic was planning a military putsch, seeking

19 foreign support for it. And being unable to get it either in the East or

20 in the West, he had to abandon the idea in 1991, at the end of 1991.

21 Q. So you said the JNA did not participate in this planning, and I

22 think you have explained already the allegations about me exerting

23 effective control, and you said the JNA did not participate in the

24 forcible removal of population.

25 But tell me, how did the JNA act in crisis situations when there

Page 43401

1 were tensions and conflicts between members of various ethnic communities

2 in the area of the former Yugoslavia, and tell me in particular what was

3 the attitude of the JNA towards civilians? How did they treat members of

4 various ethnicities?

5 A. The JNA tried their best to prevent conflicts, to eliminate

6 conflicts, to act as a buffer zone between conflicting parties. I already

7 mentioned the example of Borovo village when a JNA unit moved in only ten

8 minutes after the conflict started, and it ordered the policemen and -- on

9 both sides to withdraw and to take away their wounded. They had orders

10 from the highest command to treat all the civilians equally, with care, to

11 protect them, to assist them in war zones in every possible way. That was

12 the general position of the JNA, and all the orders that I know of were

13 worded to that effect. The JNA did not make any distinction on ethnic

14 grounds.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Time for the break. We will adjourn for 20

16 minutes.

17 --- Recess taken at 12.16 p.m.

18 --- On resuming at 12.40 p.m.

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

20 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I hope the microphone is on.

22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

23 Q. We can move on, Mr. Seselj. Subparagraph (h) --

24 A. Just tell me which page.

25 Q. Page 6. Have you found it?

Page 43402

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. "Provided financial, logistical and other support to units --"

3 THE INTERPRETER: Could interpreters have a reference, an exact

4 reference? It's --

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Stop. The interpreters are asking for a

6 reference.

7 It's paragraph 26 and subparagraph (h) of the Croatian indictment.

8 And, Mr. Milosevic, there is no point reading it out. You ought to be

9 able to formulate a question that reflects the substance of the paragraph.

10 You're wasting time reading out what is in the indictment. In any event,

11 the witness has it in front of him in his own language.

12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

13 Q. So, Mr. Seselj --

14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This is something that is repeated

15 many times throughout, Mr. Robinson, and it was written by Mr. Nice and

16 his service. I didn't write it. If I wrote that, I wouldn't have to ask

17 the same question over and over again, but these allegations do repeat

18 themselves.

19 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

20 Q. So did I provide financial support to some units to carry out some

21 sort of criminal enterprise and did they perpetrate a criminal enterprise?

22 A. No, you did not assist any units of the Territorial Defence

23 because all those units were under the command of the JNA. Your military

24 support, if any, could only have been support to the JNA, whereas the

25 financial and -- financial and logistical support was extended to the

Page 43403

1 political leaderships of those areas.

2 Second, there were no TO units or government agencies in the

3 Dubrovnik Republic. The Dubrovnik Republic remained an idea, an

4 initiative. No institutions were formed to support it, and this is

5 something that's repeated throughout the Croatian indictment. So the

6 Dubrovnik Republic was an initiative of Novak Kilibarda, and a group of

7 deputies from Cavtat, Serb Catholics from Cavtat and other towns. It

8 remained an initiative.

9 In the area of Dubrovnik it was only the JNA that was active.

10 There were no paramilitary units, there were no units of the Territorial

11 Defence.

12 Q. TO units are mentioned in all these areas. Is it the case that TO

13 units and volunteer units assist in the execution of this joint criminal

14 enterprise by forcibly removing one-third of the Croatian population?

15 A. Forcible deportation of the Croatian population was nobody's

16 objective. Elements of persecution occurred only in the framework of

17 incidents. However, there was no such systematic conduct either as an

18 idea or in practice.

19 Q. (i) says I effectively ordered the passage of laws and regulations

20 relative to the involvement of the JNA, the TO, and Serb volunteer units

21 in Croatia. My question is as follows: Are you aware of the existence of

22 any law or regulation that would suit this description, match this

23 description?

24 A. No. It was senseless referring to that in the indictment. There

25 cannot be a single law before it is published in the Official Gazette or

Page 43404












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43405

1 in the federal Official Gazette. Laws related to the JNA could only be

2 passed by the Federal Assembly and the Presidency of Yugoslavia could

3 adopt decrees with the force of law in a state of war, imminent state of

4 war, or an emergency, a state of emergency. So it could have nothing to

5 do with you or could you order anyone in the federal parliament or federal

6 Presidency to adopt such general or legal enactments.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, you note the word "effectively" in

8 paragraph (i), which encompasses the idea that although Mr. Milosevic

9 might not have done so de jure, in effect, nonetheless, there was the

10 passage of these laws. But I understand you to say that no laws at all

11 were passed relating to the involvement of the JNA, the TO, and the Serb

12 volunteer units in Croatia.

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I categorically state that no laws

14 regarding this matter were passed. There was no need to do that because

15 the laws of the former Yugoslavia were quite sufficient. On the basis of

16 the laws and regulations of the former Yugoslavia, the chief of General

17 Staff could take orders to have volunteers engaged within the JNA. As far

18 as I know, there are only such orders. And an order cannot be a legal

19 enactment with the force of law, Mr. Robinson. I hope you will agree with

20 me that that doesn't exist anywhere in the world.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, I would tend to agree with you, but let us

22 hear the evidence.

23 Mr. Milosevic.

24 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

25 Q. Then you've got the next subparagraph, (j), where it says that I

Page 43406

1 directed, commanded, controlled or otherwise provided substantial

2 assistance or support to the JNA, the Serb-run TO, staff and volunteer

3 forces deployed in the execution of the purpose of the joint criminal

4 enterprise.

5 A. That is impossible legally and factually, but there's something

6 else I'm thinking of now, Mr. Milosevic. Your political opponents,

7 including myself, sometimes in the heat of arguments did accuse you of

8 this. It seems that the indictment was written on the basis of our

9 attacks against you, not on the basis of actual facts.

10 Q. All right. Let me put a question to you. It says directed,

11 commanded, controlled, or otherwise provided substantial assistance or

12 support to the JNA, the TO, et cetera. Did I do that?

13 A. That's impossible. Command and control is a purely military

14 function, and it takes place according to the military chain of command,

15 the military hierarchy. There was simply no place for you in that

16 military chain of command. I have already implicitly shown that you could

17 not influence Veljko Kadijevic or Blagoje Adzic. You could talk to them.

18 You could advise them, but it was obvious from all testimonies from the

19 period that they practically did not listen to anyone.

20 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note: Could there please be a

21 pause between question and answer.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: The interpreters are asking for a pause between

23 question and answer. You also said in your answer, Mr. Seselj, that it

24 was impossible factually. You said this is impossible legally and

25 factually. Now, comment on why it was a factual impossibility for

Page 43407

1 Mr. Milosevic to exercise control over the JNA. We're not dealing now

2 with the de jure legal situation, the chain of command. As a matter of

3 fact, why was it impossible for him for to exercise such control?

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Factually, it was impossible because

5 of the structure of the command of the Yugoslav People's Army, due to the

6 fact that the minister of defence was General Veljko Kadijevic, and the

7 chief of General Staff was General Blagoje Adzic. The two of them,

8 together with a group of other generals, constantly planned a coup d'etat,

9 military coup d'etat, to topple Mr. Milosevic, Tudjman, Rupel,

10 Izetbegovic, and God knows who else, and to reunite Yugoslavia, expecting

11 foreign support. They were never followers of Mr. Milosevic.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, anything is factually possible if it

13 is to happen outside the law. Whether it can happen depends, does it not,

14 on the personality of the individuals that are involved and the power that

15 is open to them, the power that is exercisable by them as a matter of

16 fact?

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The memoir of Borisav Jovic, then

18 member of the Presidency of Yugoslavia, you can see, Mr. Robinson, that

19 Milosevic and Borisav Jovic constantly expressed their dissatisfaction

20 with the behaviour of Kadijevic and Blagoje Adzic. There was some

21 intolerance there that all of us involved in politics were aware of.

22 I myself knew that there was dislike between Milosevic on the one

23 hand and Blagoje Adzic and Veljko Kadijevic on the other hand. As a

24 matter of fact, when learning of this dislike in 1991, my sympathy was on

25 Mr. Milosevic's side rather than on Kadijevic's and Adzic's side.

Page 43408

1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

2 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. Tell us, Mr. Seselj, precisely on the basis of your knowledge from

4 that time, what was it that could have created the impression that there

5 was an alliance between the JNA, the Serbian leadership, and the Serbs

6 from the areas in Croatia and Bosnia?

7 A. Only because the position of the Serbian leadership and majority

8 political factors were loyal to the Yugoslav People's Army. They did not

9 want to set up a separate army and they did not want to break up

10 Yugoslavia.

11 Q. All right. Let me just see whether the interpretation has

12 finished. Yes. Fine.

13 Now, advocating the preservation of Yugoslavia, was that unlawful

14 and was that in contravention of the law?

15 A. That was the only lawful and right option from the point of view

16 of the constitution and the legal order. Everything else was against the

17 law. Even I, who was ideologically very disappointed in Yugoslavia, from

18 an ideological point of view I no longer found Yugoslavia acceptable.

19 From a legal and factual point of view, I always behaved loyally because

20 Yugoslavia was the only legal state at the time, and its armed force was

21 the only regular army throughout the territory of Yugoslavia.

22 Q. Was it lawful to advocate the breaking up of Yugoslavia?

23 A. It was unlawful, and it was also in contravention of provisions of

24 the Federal Criminal Code. All of those who pursued a separatist policy,

25 even without resorting to force, because even that was prohibited, could

Page 43409

1 have been sentenced to many years in prison.

2 Q. Advocating the preservation of Yugoslavia and defending of

3 Yugoslavia, was that the right and obligation of the JNA?

4 A. Yes. That was the basic obligation of the JNA throughout its

5 existence.

6 Q. Along with the JNA, according to the constitution of Yugoslavia,

7 who made up the armed forces of Yugoslavia?

8 A. The armed forces were made up of the Yugoslav People's Army and

9 the Territorial Defence. According to the constitution, those are the two

10 components of the armed forces. Laws further stipulated when the TO would

11 be resubordinated to JNA commands, because the Territorial Defence was

12 established at the level of federal units respectively and the JNA only at

13 the level of all of Yugoslavia. The army districts of the JNA did not

14 correspond to the borders of the federal units. For example, the 6th Army

15 District, with its headquarters in Sarajevo, did encompass almost all of

16 Bosnia-Herzegovina and almost all of Slavonia, which belonged to the

17 federal unit of Croatia otherwise, and in Slovenia there were two army

18 districts.

19 Q. Advocating the preservation of Yugoslavia and defending it, was

20 that the task of the Territorial Defence too?

21 A. Yes, likewise. Both components of the armed forces were

22 duty-bound to safeguard Yugoslavia from external aggression and from

23 internal subversive factors; a possible armed insurrection or whatever.

24 Q. And advocating the preservation of Yugoslavia, was that the

25 obligation of all other organs of government; federal, republic and

Page 43410

1 municipal, et cetera?

2 A. Yes. Federal, republican, provincial, municipal, et cetera, all

3 levels of government, and also all citizens were duty-bound to preserve

4 the territorial integrity, the legal order and the state sovereignty of

5 Yugoslavia.

6 Q. Support and assistance to the JNA in carrying out its

7 constitutional duties, is that something illegal?

8 A. That was your duty. Everything you did as president of the

9 Republic of Serbia, everything that your party did as the ruling party in

10 Serbia, in all the institutions of Serbia in the domain of assisting the

11 Yugoslav People's Army was your constitutional and legal obligation.

12 Q. All right. Generally speaking, Mr. Seselj --

13 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers please be asked to slow down

14 and could Mr. Milosevic be asked to read slower.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, the interpreters are asking you to

16 slow down.

17 Mr. Seselj, you do not observe the pause after Mr. Milosevic's

18 questions. You answer immediately. Follow Mr. Milosevic. He is now

19 listening to the interpretation and waiting until the interpretation is

20 finished. You answer immediately --

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'll try.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: -- because you speak the same language, so there

23 is that natural tendency.

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'll try to pause. If I sometimes

25 get carried away, I hope you won't hold it against me very much.

Page 43411

1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. Mr. Seselj, if particular entities in one state, especially the

3 state organs of that state, advocate the survival of that state and defend

4 it from illegal violent secession, which, as you explained, is a

5 constitutional obligation, can that be considered some kind of conspiracy

6 or a joint criminal enterprise?

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic. I am beginning to form the view

8 now, Mr. Milosevic, that these questions are provocatively leading, and

9 I'm considering a particular course of action to take. Next question.

10 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. Mr. Seselj, did the mentioned forces, and you spoke about these

12 forces, the JNA and the Territorial Defence, commit any crimes in order to

13 carry out a joint criminal enterprise?

14 A. No. Crimes did occur, but in particular incidents where it was

15 impossible to control individuals or groups, some groups. To the best of

16 my knowledge, some crimes were intentionally provoked in order to yield

17 political effects. As proof of that, I say, and this is a fact, that

18 General Aleksandar Vasiljevic, as head of the military security service,

19 happened to be in Western Slavonia at the time of the breakdown of Western

20 Slavonia when there were some crimes committed against civilians, and he

21 also happened to be in Vukovar when the prisoners in Ovcara were executed.

22 That shows that some factor in the military, for political reasons, wanted

23 particularly graphic crimes in order to manipulate them later, for

24 manipulative purposes. I simply have no other explanation for what

25 happened.

Page 43412












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43413

1 Q. All right. But you are not accusing General Vasiljevic of taking

2 part in what happened.

3 A. I do accuse him, because General Vasiljevic, if he knew about

4 these crimes in Western Slavonia and in Ovcara, he did not file criminal

5 reports. He did not take appropriate measures for military courts as the

6 only courts that were in charge, according to the legal order then, to

7 prosecute criminally the perpetrators. That was his elementary duty.

8 Q. Mr. Seselj, let's see what subparagraph (k) says of this paragraph

9 number 26. It says that I directed, commanded, controlled or otherwise

10 provided substantial assistance or support to the police forces within the

11 MUP of the Republic of Serbia, including the DB, whose members assisted in

12 the execution of the purpose of the joint criminal enterprise in the SAO,

13 one SAO, the other SAO, and the Dubrovnik Republic.

14 Now, the question is whether the MUP of Serbia took part in

15 carrying out any activities of that nature in the territories that are

16 mentioned here, that is to say all the territories.

17 A. The Ministry of the Interior of Serbia did not send a single

18 police unit to these areas. Individually, policemen did sign up as

19 volunteers. Among them, Radovan Stojicic Badza. They went to the theatre

20 of war. Their work obligations or, rather, their professional standing

21 was regulated by law like in the case of all other members of the JNA.

22 All of those who were members of the JNA or were volunteers in the JNA

23 remained employed and got leave of absence. In some companies, they even

24 got paid leave of absence because they'd go away for about a month or a

25 month and a half. That was the usual period that the volunteers spent at

Page 43414

1 the front line.

2 As for the Dubrovnik Republic that is referred to here, there was

3 not a single volunteer there from Serbia, let alone a policeman from

4 Serbia who was on duty there. It was only the JNA that was active in the

5 area.

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute, Mr. Milosevic.

7 [Trial Chamber confers]

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, I'm trying to remember what was the

9 Prosecution case in relation to paragraph (k). Is it that the form of

10 assistance was wholly confined to the physical presence of --

11 MR. NICE: No, let me help you because I've been concerned that

12 with all these questions the accused has sought general answers where he's

13 been provided months and months ago, if not years ago, with a scheduled,

14 detailed analysis of how the Prosecution puts its case in the document

15 called the fill-box document which was provided for everyone's assistance

16 but not least his given that he's unrepresented and maybe not skilful

17 advocate. Therefore, one can simply go to that document, which has always

18 been available to him and is indeed searchable in electronic form, and see

19 that under paragraph 26(k) you have I think some -- probably a dozen or

20 maybe more than a dozen separate entries, and I'm probably not able to

21 encapsulate them in a single answer to Your Honour's question, but to give

22 you a few examples of the entries that we find there, we find from one

23 witness volunteers fighting in the Vukovar area, many of whom admitted

24 that they worked for the MUP of the government of Serbia. Second entry is

25 in relation to fires in the vicinity of Bihac airport and a major who was

Page 43415

1 there as well as members of the SDB of Serbia. Third entry relates to

2 fairly detailed evidence from Milan Babic. Fourth entry is Exhibit 352,

3 tab 19.

4 It's all set out there, the various ways in which this particular

5 part of the indictment is said to be supported by the Prosecution. And

6 it's not a single way. It's a number of different ways. You can go

7 through, apart from the evidence of Aleksandar Vasiljevic himself, he was

8 referred to, you can also find, and you'll probably, I think, remember

9 this, evidence from -- it's on page 188 of the document, the employee at

10 the Ministry of Defence of Serbia dealing with Dusanko Vorkapic from Sid

11 of the local Serb Territorial Defence for Vukovar coming to the Ministry

12 of Defence, saying that the sewer system was being used by Croat forces as

13 a shelter from which to attack Serbs, and the minister then consulting

14 with the accused and deciding that Arkan's volunteers were to be given the

15 task of mining and stocking up the corridors.

16 It's a great deal of evidence, and it's all been provided to the

17 accused so that if he has the ability, through this witness, to deal with

18 direct -- in direct evidence to counter or qualify the evidence that's

19 been given, he could have been doing so in these direct. These vague or

20 generalised answers are unlikely to assist in the analysis evidence in

21 this case.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Nice. It's for the accused to

23 determine how to put his questions, but I merely wanted to remind myself

24 of what the Prosecution case was on this point.

25 [Trial Chamber confers]

Page 43416

1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm really wondering, Mr. Robinson,

3 how I'm supposed to prove that the allegations by these alleged witnesses

4 of Mr. Nice's are incorrect. They can say whatever they like. These are

5 merely lies, and I'm asking Mr. Seselj about the counts in this alleged

6 indictment.

7 If you're asking me to prove that his witnesses are telling

8 falsehoods, well, how can I prove non-existent facts? You keep telling me

9 that the burden of proof is not on me, and yet I have to keep trying to

10 prove that what Mr. Nice is saying is not true. It's up to him to prove

11 that it is true.

12 So I'm asking Mr. Seselj --

13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Go ahead, Mr. Milosevic.

14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

15 Q. -- whether the Ministry of the Interior of Serbia, the Republic of

16 Serbia, participated in the military operations in Croatia and

17 Bosnia-Herzegovina.

18 A. No. Never did a single police unit as such from Serbia cross the

19 Drina or the Danube, but there were individual policemen who volunteered

20 to participate in the war in order to defend the Serbian people there.

21 These policemen went there as volunteers, and during their absence their

22 employment rights were protected.

23 In Vukovar, there was no police unit, only the 1st Guards Brigade.

24 The Territorial Defence of Vukovar was subordinated to the 1st Guards

25 Brigade. All the volunteers of the Serb Radical Party became members of

Page 43417

1 the 1st Guards Brigade. What police units these are that were allegedly

2 in Vukovar, I don't know. I went to Vukovar twice while the struggle for

3 liberation was going on. I saw everything. I was at the front lines. I

4 visited almost every street. It's impossible that there was something

5 there that I didn't see.

6 Q. Subparagraph (l), Mr. Seselj, says: "Financed Serb military and

7 police and irregular soldiers in Croatia who perpetrated crimes as

8 specified in this indictment." Let me ask you, then, did the army and

9 police of the Krajina perpetrate crimes, and who on the Serb side

10 perpetrated crimes?

11 A. The Serb army on the police of the Republika Srpska Krajina or,

12 rather, the previous Serb autonomous provinces, did not perpetrate crimes.

13 Crimes occurred only in individual incidents which were beyond control.

14 As for financing, the authorities in Serbia never financed the

15 military or the police of the Republika Srpska Krajina. They provided

16 financial support to the legal government of the Republika Srpska Krajina.

17 Those lawful authorities, when they received financial assistance, decided

18 what their priorities were in spending that money. I do not exclude that

19 sometimes assistance was provided in the form of equipment or food, but

20 there was no financing of a military or police organisation.

21 Q. Do you know, Mr. Seselj, what the relationship was between the

22 government in Serbia, the government in Yugoslavia, and the government in

23 Krajina, the government of the Republic of Srpska Krajina, and what their

24 attitude was to the crimes perpetrated by individuals and groups?

25 A. All three governments were categorically opposed to the commission

Page 43418

1 of crimes, both crimes against prisoners of war and crimes against the

2 civilian population. It was not always possible, however, to prevent the

3 occurrence of crimes. That was the problem.

4 Q. Are you aware of cases where, for example, Milan Martic, whom you

5 mentioned, personally ordered the arrest of individuals who had committed

6 crimes?

7 A. Yes. When I was in Knin in November 1991 accompanying the

8 minister of justice, I visited the Knin prison. There was some Croatian

9 prisoners of war there. They were all later exchanged. And there was a

10 group of Serbs who had been charged with committing crimes over Croatian

11 civilians. As far as I can remember, in the area of Kordun. They were

12 charged, indicted, and I don't know what happened next.

13 Q. So in prison you saw Serbs who had been arrested by Martic's

14 Police - the term used here - because of crimes they had committed against

15 Croats.

16 A. Yes. I assert categorically that in November 1991, they were in

17 the prison in Knin, and this is easy to check.

18 Q. Thank you, Mr. Seselj. And finally, subparagraph (m), at the end

19 of paragraph 26, it says: "Controlled, contributed to, or otherwise

20 utilised Serbian state-run media outlets to manipulate Serbian public

21 opinion by spreading exaggerated and false messages of ethnically based

22 attacks by Croats against Serb people in order to create an atmosphere of

23 fear and hatred amongst Serbs living in Serbia and Croatia. The

24 propaganda generated by the Serbian media was an important tool in

25 contributing to the perpetration of crimes in Croatia."

Page 43419

1 So you heard this whole subparagraph (m). What can you say first

2 of all about the media in Serbia at the time and whether there were

3 opposition papers and TV stations and whether there was freedom of

4 information?

5 A. First of all, these are not legal statements. They're political

6 statements. Secondly, Serbia was the first on the territory of the former

7 Yugoslavia to introduce freedom of the press, to begin the privatisation

8 of state-run media, and to give freedom to private media.

9 I know for certain that the state-owned television on more than

10 one occasion refused to broadcast the most terrible documentary footage of

11 crimes perpetrated against civilians, and I know that -- against Serb

12 civilians, and I know that it was the opposition media who were always

13 more critical of the authorities in Croatia than the state-owned media

14 were. That's a fact.

15 In 1991, 1992, there was a huge number of private newspapers,

16 privately owned papers, coming out in Serbia. Many later stopped coming

17 out because there was intense competition. Anyone could publish whatever

18 they wanted to. In that period, no newspaper was banned. As far as I can

19 remember, there was a ban in 1990. There was no book that was banned

20 except for the book --

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: You've answered the question.

22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

23 Q. Did the media in Serbia, let's go one-by-one through these

24 allegations, did they spread, exaggerate, and broadcast false messages of

25 ethnically based attacks by Croats against Serb people, as it says here?

Page 43420












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43421

1 A. No. Every attack by a Croat against a Serb was ethnically

2 motivated. Secondly, there were many such attacks. The facts about such

3 attacks were published. It happened sometimes in the Western media that

4 attacks against Serbs and Serb victims were falsely portrayed as attacks

5 by Serbs against Croats and Croat victims. We have a number of examples

6 where Serbs who had been killed were shown on the Western media,

7 especially in Austria and Germany, and they were portrayed as Croatian

8 victims. Sometimes our media would broadcast footage from the foreign

9 media, especially the opposition ones. And then the families of the

10 victims would speak up and say that it was their family members who had

11 been killed and not Croats. There were many such cases.

12 Q. Tell me now, did the media, as it says here, and it says

13 especially state-run media in Serbia, did they create an atmosphere of

14 fear and hatred?

15 A. It's very hard for me to speak about such a generalised

16 allegation. How did they create -- supposedly create this atmosphere of

17 fear and hatred? When we spoke about crimes perpetrated by Croats against

18 Serb civilians, this cannot be described as creating an atmosphere of fear

19 and hatred. This might only be the case had we lied, had we said that the

20 Croats had killed such-and-such a number of Serb civilians and then this

21 was shown to be untrue. But we only had the reverse; Muslims and Croats

22 claiming that their civilians had been killed when this turned out to be a

23 falsehood. The Muslims sometimes killed their own civilians in order to

24 portray these crimes as crimes committed by the Serb forces.

25 Q. As you had personal experience of all this, tell us, what was the

Page 43422

1 realistic possibility for the media from Serbia to influence the

2 population in the Krajina? For example, the media from Belgrade

3 influencing people in Glina, Petrinja, Lika, Banja, Kordun?

4 A. As I travelled there often, I can testify to the fact that the

5 local Serbian population there was very angry because the Serbian media

6 were not broadcasting enough information about all the events there and

7 all their sufferings. And very often you couldn't even see TV Belgrade in

8 the western parts of the country.

9 The Belgrade papers arrived rarely and very late, so they mostly

10 relied on their own media. They had their own radio stations. Sometimes

11 someone would publish a newspaper, but as far as I know there were no

12 daily papers there. These papers were published rarely. So they mainly

13 relied on radio stations.

14 Q. Very well. The electronic media could not be seen. Some

15 newspapers did arrive, but what was the realistic opportunity for the

16 Croatian media to influence this population?

17 A. Well, the population could watch Croatian television, listen to

18 broadcasts by Croatian stations. This only intensified their fear and

19 hatred because in international law hate-speak has never been a crime.

20 It's only been portrayed as a crime here. But you will see that in the

21 Croatian media the hate-speak was far worse and more widespread than in

22 the Serb media.

23 Q. Well, we are now referring to state-run media because the point

24 here was that I utilised state-run media to create an atmosphere of fear

25 and hatred.

Page 43423

1 A. No. The state-run media in Serbia had the most nuanced reports on

2 all the war events. They -- the opposition media followed instructions

3 from foreign intelligence agencies and provided information that was

4 detrimental to the Serb side, but never were any of these media banned,

5 even though it was well known they were receiving money from abroad, and

6 every year in the American Congress there were reports as to how much

7 money the American government was giving for subversive activities on the

8 territory of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. In the year 2000, this

9 was about $100 million. It's no secret.

10 Q. You just spoke about the media who were close to the authorities

11 or the media who were close to the opposition. Can you tell us in very

12 general terms what percentage of the media were close to the authorities

13 and what percentage to the opposition?

14 A. There was only one media outlet that was close to the authorities.

15 It was the so-called Radio-Television Serbia. It was the only media

16 outlet close to the government. All the other media in Serbia were more

17 or less oppositionist. Television Studio B and Television Politika, all

18 Belgrade newspapers were on the side of opposition. They were all under

19 the umbrella of the Politika publishing house.

20 You remember that in 1992 we wanted to turn Politika company into

21 a public enterprise. However, the opposition was so great we had to

22 abandon the idea.

23 All the newspapers published by the Borba publishing house,

24 including Vecernje Novosti, were on the side of the opposition. There

25 were no state-controlled media apart from the Radio-Television Serbia.

Page 43424

1 Even there, they didn't always listen to the government, but they had a

2 management board that included members of the government but also members

3 of the opposition. I believe Slobodan Rakitic, from the Serbian Renewal

4 Movement, and another two members of the opposition were on that

5 management board. That was much more in terms of opposition

6 representation than they had in the Assembly.

7 Q. You were considered as a hard-line opposition. Were media in

8 Serbia free or not?

9 A. I believe they were free because there were no bans on newspapers

10 or on books apart from the book The Protocols of Zionist Wisemen. I

11 remember that the police came to seize that book but they didn't have a

12 proper warrant so they only seized only three copies, not the entire

13 circulation.

14 The authorities avoided imposing any bans on the media and I

15 remember that it was a great achievement of the current government

16 compared to the previous period when the regime frequently banned certain

17 books. Under the previous regime, nobody could publish any books on their

18 own, or private newspapers. Somebody tried in 1986, but they were sent to

19 prison.

20 Q. So you say that in that entire decade only one book was banned.

21 Why?

22 A. Because it was anti-Semitic in content. It had nothing to do with

23 our internal Yugoslavia situation. The Protocols of Zionist Wisemen is a

24 famous book. It dates back to a hundred years ago.

25 Q. Tell us, what was the influence of foreign media on the population

Page 43425

1 of the FRY and Serbia?

2 A. People were free to watch cable television, choosing their own

3 programmes without any restrictions, and foreign newspapers were freely on

4 sale in Belgrade.

5 Q. Could you buy in Belgrade all the leading European newspapers from

6 all the European countries?

7 A. I personally bought Time, NewsWeek magazines, sometimes the

8 Washington Post, sometimes The New York Times, but you could buy the

9 newspapers from all Western countries; American, French, English, Italian.

10 Q. Tell us, what was the influence of the foreign media on Serbian

11 media?

12 A. Their influence was great. Many of our opposition media outlets

13 were under the influence of foreign media, such as Studio B. The

14 television of the city of Belgrade was established in 1990 and it acted as

15 an oppositionist television station, and I presented to our parliament

16 reports on how they received equipment from the British embassy as a gift

17 that was recorded. People informed me of those deliveries and I went

18 there to see it with my own eyes and then I reported it to the parliament.

19 Q. Mr. Seselj, we had Stjepan Mesic, among others, here. Do you

20 remember his activities from the time when he was occupying the highest

21 positions in Croatia and in the FRY?

22 A. Yes. When Stipe Mesic was elected president of the Presidency of

23 Yugoslavia, the Serb Radical Party held large protest rallies in front of

24 the federal Assembly building sometime in 1991. His election failed in

25 the first attempt because he didn't have enough votes, but then came

Page 43426

1 representatives of the European Community, insisted that he be appointed,

2 and they even attended his election as a form of pressure. I believe the

3 Dutch foreign minister was among them.

4 Q. You mean Mr. Van den Broek?

5 A. Yes. Stipe Mesic left Belgrade sometime in 1991 and went to the

6 Croatian parliament, saying from the rostrum, "I fulfilled my mission.

7 Yugoslavia exists no more." Those are the historic words of Stipe Mesic.

8 So he became the president of Yugoslavia with a mission to destroy it.

9 Q. I'll tell you what he said here as a witness. Page 10530 of the

10 transcript. I draw your attention to the fact that we only have an

11 English version of the transcript, and I will quote some passages from his

12 testimony.

13 [In English] "It was those who were attacking and taking place --

14 taking police stations who, as later become quite evident, were trying to

15 establish the borders of a Greater Serbia running from Virovitica through

16 Karlovac to Karlobag. If you look at all the acts of provocation that

17 took place, they were actually setting up the borders of a Greater

18 Serbia."

19 [Interpretation] That relates to the Serbs in Krajina and the

20 Yugoslav People's Army.

21 Is that correct, Mr. Seselj?

22 A. Well, he's misusing the ideology of the Serb Radical Party, our

23 ideological concept of Greater Serbia and our idea of the borders

24 Karlovac, Ogulin -- Karlobag, Ogulin, Karlovac, Virovitica, and he also

25 forgets the numbers of Muslims, Albanians, Macedonians and others.

Page 43427

1 For the defence of their freedoms, they led a struggle that has

2 nothing to do with our ideas. God knows whether future generations will

3 manage to fulfil this idea in the Balkans when the Western influences are

4 eliminated.

5 This is a very, very long-term project. I have already mentioned

6 it is more than a -- more than 300 years old.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.

8 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

9 Q. On page 10532, Mesic says, and I'm skipping some parts to save

10 time: "[In English] The Serbs in Croatia were tricked because Milosevic

11 had told them that the Serbs would live together in a single state and

12 that this was their right because they had the right to

13 self-determination. He was deceiving the world because he was saying that

14 he was fighting for Yugoslavia. However, he was doing everything to

15 destroy it."

16 [Interpretation] So Mesic is saying that I did everything to break

17 up Yugoslavia. And he is the same man who said that his mission was

18 accomplished and that Yugoslavia was no more.

19 A. You were one of the rare presidents of any federal unit who

20 struggled for the preservation of Yugoslavia.

21 Second, you could not trick the Serbs of Krajina because they

22 couldn't be tricked by anyone.

23 Third, your policies were always more moderate than those of the

24 Serbs in Krajina, and you even clashed with some of their governments over

25 that.

Page 43428












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 43429

1 And fourth, nobody could raise the Serb people in Krajina to an

2 armed insurgency and to fight the Tudjman regime if their lives had not

3 been in danger, if their very survival had not been threatened.

4 Q. Now, we are coming to a subject that you as a politician, as an

5 oppositionist politician, have to be familiar with. Look at what Mesic

6 says concerning the Serbian Democratic Party. It's on the same page,

7 10532. "[In English] At the beginning when the SDS was being set up, it

8 did not appear that that party would become too radical. It was to

9 struggle for cultural autonomy. But as time went on, it became evident

10 that this party was being manipulated by Belgrade, which means the regime

11 of Slobodan Milosevic and he himself, and that they were doing only things

12 that would lead to the creation of a Greater Serbia, an ethnically pure

13 territory cleansed of the non-Serbian population.

14 "In areas where the SDS took power, the population was completely

15 cleansed, that is, the non-Serbian population. This was an organisation

16 that was to bring a dowry to Greater Serbia in the form of new

17 territories."

18 [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, you've just heard what Mr. Mesic had

19 stated here. According to him, I manipulated the Serbian Democratic Party

20 in Krajina, and in those places where they took over power, they carried

21 out an ethnic cleansing of non-Serbs in order to create new territories

22 for Serbs, pure territories.

23 A. It was impossible for you to manipulate the SDS because the

24 leadership of the SDS, especially Jovan Raskovic as its first president,

25 were not in collusion with you and had no contact with you. They were in

Page 43430

1 collusion and in contact with the leading opposition leaders in Belgrade.

2 They had been so since before the war.

3 Jovan Raskovic and another number of Serbs from Croatia kept

4 company exclusively with Dobrica Cosic, myself, and other opposition

5 leaders. I met Jovan Raskovic at Dobrica Cosic's place, and we met to

6 talk, to criticise the regime and share opinions.

7 They could not have been close to you; they were close to the

8 opposition. That's how these three parties came into being, the Serbian

9 Democratic Party in Croatia, the Serbian Democratic Party in

10 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and the DS in Serbia, the Democratic Party in Serbia.

11 Q. What about Mesic's claim that they acted as Serb agents, promoting

12 Serbian interests?

13 A. Mesic is right about one thing: The Serbian Democratic Party did

14 insist on cultural autonomy, but look at this fact: At the first

15 multi-party elections in Croatia the majority of Serbian people did not

16 vote for the Serbian Democratic Party, they voted for Racan's party, the

17 Party of Democratic Changes, which was made up mostly of Croats.

18 Serbs were very disappointed by the victory of Franjo Tudjman and

19 the Croatian Democratic Union who were obviously Ustashas, because they

20 had brought back notorious Ustashas back to the country and given some of

21 them ministerial positions, and Serbs understood clearly that they had to

22 rally together to protect themselves. They did not wish for any autonomy

23 in that Croatia as a state of citizens. But when they realised that the

24 Ustasha regime was being restored in Croatia, a regime that openly --

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.

Page 43431

1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. So, Mr. Seselj, very specifically: Were they trying to ensure

3 some new territories for Serbia?

4 A. No. They were trying to protect their lives. And Jovan Raskovic

5 openly made it known that if Croatia remains in Yugoslavia, they didn't

6 want any territorial autonomy. They wanted only cultural autonomy. They

7 wanted to have the right to have their own language, customs, traditions,

8 et cetera. If Croatia wanted a confederation, then they would be asking

9 for territorial autonomy within in Croatia for Serbs. And only in the

10 event of Croatian secession they wanted the right to self-determination.

11 They wanted to remain within Yugoslavia.

12 I wish to remind you that international -- in international legal

13 practice, federal units did not have the right to self-determination.

14 Only peoples or nations had that right. And it was considered that that

15 right had been exercised once and for all with the creation of Yugoslavia

16 as a federal state after the First World War.

17 Q. Thank you, Mr. Seselj. I will now ask you a question that is

18 closely related to the passage from that Croatian paper we quoted a moment

19 ago.

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, I'm sorry to interrupt you but

21 there is another case here this afternoon at 2.15, and we have to adjourn.

22 We will resume tomorrow at 9.00 a.m.

23 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.44 p.m.,

24 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 31st day

25 of August, 2005, at 9.00 a.m.