1 Wednesday, 1 March 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, please continue with your
8 WITNESS: SLOBODAN JARCEVIC [Interpretation]
9 [Witness answered through interpreter]
10 Re-examination by Mr. Milosevic: [Continued]
11 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Just a few questions. I'll try not to keep you long.
14 Mrs. Retzlaff said that I dismissed and appointed people such as Milan
15 Babic, whom she used as an example. Do you recall how Babic was replaced
16 and who replaced him?
17 A. Mr. President, at that time, I was not in the Republic of Serb
18 Krajina, but I know about these events. He was dismissed because he did
19 not want to accept the Vance Plan offered by the Security Council and the
20 other mediators to resolve the issues that had arisen in Yugoslavia;
21 primarily the European Union, OSCE, and so on. The parliament then
22 intervened as the highest legislative body of the Republic of Serb
23 Krajina, as is usual in any state, and the signature question --
24 Q. All right. You don't have to go into any further details. Was it
25 the Assembly of the Krajina that replaced Babic?
1 A. Yes. That's just what I'm saying.
2 Q. Very well.
3 A. And if you like, I would like to say that he rose very fast in his
4 career and had you had any influence of that, he would certainly never
5 have been Prime Minister, nor would he have become minister of foreign
6 affairs after I was replaced.
7 Q. When he became the foreign minister, you described that situation.
8 He was appointed to that post after he won a majority in the Krajina
10 Q. Yes.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Could there be a pause between question and
12 answer, please.
13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. So did someone --
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic and the witness, the interpreter is
16 asking you to observe a pause between question and answer.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise once more.
18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Very well. Mr. Jarcevic, did anyone from Belgrade exert any
20 influence for him to have the appropriate make-up of the parliament so
21 that he could become a minister of foreign affairs?
22 A. Well, there's no point in even talking about it. At the
23 parliamentary elections, he won the majority, and so he, of course, was
24 able to take the highest posts in the country, and that's the same in
25 every country in the world.
1 Q. Throughout the time you were minister of foreign affairs and a
2 member of the cabinet, can you give a single example of Belgrade
3 intervening in the appointment of any official in the Krajina?
4 A. No. I have no such information, but I could inform the Chamber of
5 a very interesting combination of cadres in the state after the
6 multi-party elections which were under the control of the Security
7 Council. President Martic, who won several percentages more than
8 Mr. Babic at the election, said to me, "Our country needs an economy
9 and --"
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Jarcevic. You did answer the
12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Very well. Mr. Jarcevic, Mrs. Uertz-Retzlaff showed you a letter
14 here which you sent to Republika Srpska. I was not able to see the date
15 in this extract, because you can't see it here, but this was at the time
16 when you were talking about the dangers and calling people to unity. Do
17 you remember that letter?
18 A. I don't have it before me because I've already packed away my
19 papers. I didn't think I'd need them any more.
20 Q. Very well. As you don't have it before you and I want to put only
21 one question in connection with it, Mrs. Uertz-Retzlaff quoted -- there's
22 a long passage at the beginning which takes up more than half a page, and
23 towards the end of that passage there's a sentence of yours: "The Serbian
24 knights must be on the Serbian borders," and she asked you what borders
25 these were.
1 At the beginning of this passage, where you say, "Dear Mr. Buha,"
2 and right after that it says: "The Croatian army has attacked all the
3 points along our border. Its only aim is to kill and expel the Serbs from
4 the Republic of Serb Krajina, just as it has done with the Serbs in
5 Herceg-Bosna and the Republic of Croatia." So it says the Croatian army
6 has attacked all our borders. And at the end of the passage, you say the
7 Serbian knights - meaning the Serbian soldiers - have to be on Serbian
8 borders. What kind of borders? This is all in the same passage. It's
9 all one paragraph. So what kind of borders are these?
10 A. Well, these are the borders of the Republic of Serbian Krajina or,
11 rather, the UN protected areas, as our country was called in the
12 international organisations and as it was called by all the members of the
13 United Nations.
14 Q. I won't go into this. Just a moment. You were shown a document
15 here or, rather, a letter that you sent to Stanisic in connection with the
16 arrival of a delegation of the Cossack army of Russia. Do you have this
17 before you?
18 A. No, but I know what it says, so I don't have to look at it.
19 Q. All right. Very well. You speak of the arrival of a delegation,
20 as it says here in paragraph 2, four air tickets Moscow-Belgrade-Moscow.
21 What does this indicate?
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues] ... 968. Yes.
23 Go ahead, Mr. Milosevic.
24 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. What does this explain when you say four air tickets
1 Moscow-Belgrade-Moscow? Does it mean that they have to arrive from where
2 and where are they going on then?
3 A. As for air transport, they had to go from Moscow to Belgrade and
4 then go back to Moscow.
5 Q. So a four-man delegation?
6 A. I think it was a larger delegation, but some of the tickets were
7 to be paid for by the government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina, and
8 other tickets were to be bought by the Republika Srpska in
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina. However, this letter doesn't show all these details.
10 Q. And do you say here that talks are to be held and that something
11 is to be signed?
12 A. Yes. The representatives of the Cossack organisation had many
13 proposals to make to us which are not contained in this letter. For
14 example, economic cooperation, military, and expert cooperation, and so on
15 and so forth.
16 Q. And does it say here that a contract on cooperation is to be
17 signed of the Republic of Serbian Krajina with this organisation?
18 A. Yes. That's just what I said.
19 Q. Does the visit of this delegation and the measures you took to
20 organise their arrival, does all this fall outside the framework of a
21 normal kind of cooperation? Because this is a letter from you to
22 Stanisic, who was the chief of state security.
23 A. Mr. President, I explained yesterday; it was wartime. It was a
24 time when Yugoslavia was being broken up. Both enemies and friends were
25 travelling through our airports and crossing our borders. Of course we
1 had to make sure that this kind of delegation would have a passage open to
2 the airport. We esteemed this organisation highly because the Cossacks
3 used to be the backbone of the Russian army, and they had a decisive
4 influence on the formation of the Russian state. Certainly the security
5 organs of Serbia would have to look after airports, not just the borders.
6 So it's quite normal that I sent a letter to the Ministry of the Interior
7 of Serbia, first of all to inform them, because they couldn't have
8 received such information from the organs of Serbia or Yugoslavia since it
9 was we autonomously as representatives of the Republika Srpska who were
10 having talks with this organisation which was promising us that we would
11 meet with understanding on the part of the executive organs of the Russian
12 Federation, which of course did not happen.
13 Q. Mrs. Uertz-Retzlaff showed you an intercept of a telephone
14 conversation between me and Perisic. Just briefly. They've crossed out
15 something that would help provide an explanation, but it's not
16 indispensable. Is Akashi mentioned here?
17 A. Mr. President, yes, Akashi is mentioned.
18 Q. Who is Akashi?
19 A. Akashi was one of the prominent representatives of the United
20 Nations. At the time, it was rumoured that he would become a candidate
21 for the post of Secretary-General. If I may say, he was probably
22 unsuccessful because he openly spoke about the massacre perpetrated by the
23 Croatian army in Western Slavonia. He was the first to say that the blood
24 on the pavement was being washed away with hoses.
25 Q. He was certainly one of the most eminent representatives of the
1 United Nations, but in the Yugoslavia of the time, he was the number one
2 representative of the Secretary-General. That was his official post.
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. He was therefore representing the United Nations. On page 2 there
5 is mention of the minister of the foreign affairs of Greece, Papuljaz.
6 Have you seen this?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Is the fact mentioned that he was coordinating with the European
9 Community because Greece was then presiding over the European Community,
10 so there's Akashi, Papuljaz, the United Nations, the European Community.
11 Does this show that there were activities on the way between me and the
12 representatives of the UN and the Greek minister of foreign affairs which
13 was coordinating the European Union at the time?
14 A. Mr. President, I can present my opinion here. You always
15 cooperated closely with all the representatives of the United Nations and
16 the prominent countries of Europe, including the European organisation the
17 OSCE, as well as the European Union. And here, by asserting this, all
18 that's left for me is to confirm that it was quite wrong that your name or
19 the name of the government of Yugoslavia or Serbia be linked to some
20 military actions against the Republic of Croatia and against the
21 Muslim-Croat Federation, as it says in the indictments of this
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Jarcevic, just answer the question. Just a
24 simple answer.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have answered it.
1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. All right. Let's put aside for a moment our efforts to work
3 through the representatives of the United Nations, EU, and so on. With
4 respect to the Flash Operation, Operation Flash that is commented on in
5 the second intercepted conversation, do you know, Mr. Jarcevic, that I
6 presented a document here provided to me by the other side - that is to
7 say Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff's side, in the course of duty - the stenographic
8 notes of the Council for National Security where we can see, starting from
9 Tudjman and then all the rest, that the Croatian leadership, even without
10 the knowledge of its own government, of their own government, staged an
11 attack on the motorway in order to go ahead with Operation Flash. Do you
12 know about that?
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: What's the question? The question is whether you
14 know about that.
15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Well, the question is whether it was -- whether it became known
17 here in this premises that that action was staged by the Croatian
18 leadership as a pretext to force the Serbs out of Western Slavonia.
19 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: The witness cannot really tell us here what
20 we have heard in earlier parts of these proceedings. I mean, how could he
21 help us there? It's a leading question, I think.
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. I agree. Mr. Milosevic, ask another
24 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Mr. Jarcevic, later on was it uncovered and found that this
1 Operation Flash was launched because of a staged attack which was not
2 perpetrated by the Serbs, but it was staged by the Croatian services as a
3 pretext for an alleged police operation?
4 A. Even small children in the former Yugoslavia know that to be a
6 Q. You were shown here a conversation or, rather, this conversation,
7 and it says that I speak of Martic's wilful conduct and the attack on
8 Zagreb, Sisak, Karlovac, and so on. Can we see here that we know about
9 that? Is that something that we know about, or do we take it at face
10 value, information provided at that time at face value? What 15 children
11 dismembered and so on? Is that something that actually happened?
12 A. I don't think that happened. The Croats would send out
13 information about casualties in different ways. There probably were
14 casualties, but I don't think there were more than six individuals who
15 were wounded or killed. And on our side, there were hundreds of dead.
16 Q. Can we see from this that at that time we believed the Croatian
17 media or that we didn't believe the Croatian information?
18 A. Well, we can see that you believed it because you were surprised
19 to hear that shells had fallen on Zagreb or around Zagreb. I don't know
20 where those rockets -- what those rockets reached, but you were surprised,
21 and that indicates that you did not take part --
22 Q. No. What I'm asking you is this: Did we believe the reports
23 coming in and published by the Croatian information media?
24 A. Mr. President, you reacted to those reports. Whether you believed
25 them or not, I don't know, I can't say.
1 Q. All right. Fine. You were also shown here a document relating to
2 the mobilisation and sending recruits to the army of Srpska Krajina. Do
3 you have that document in front you?
4 A. No, I don't, but yesterday I confirmed that I wrote the document.
5 Q. No, no, no. Zivota Panic wrote the document, the Chief of the
6 General Staff, and we're talking about taking in these recruits.
7 A. That was in response to my letter.
8 Q. All right, then. Now, in the first paragraph of this document it
9 says --
10 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, that's 352, tab 152.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff.
12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Well, I hope you have it in front of you now.
14 A. That's not it.
15 Q. Can you find it?
16 A. Well, we have it in English here, yes.
17 Q. Well, you have an attachment in Serbian.
18 A. Well, Mr. President, you go ahead and read.
19 Q. All right. Now, it says here in the first paragraph that:
20 "Because of the aggression on the part of the armed forces of the
21 Republic of Croatia on the territory of the Republic of Serbian Krajina,
22 the government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina has declared a state of
23 war and issued a general mobilisation ..."
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. So what was the reason for what they did, the pretext?
1 A. The Croats attacked three points in the Republika Srpska Krajina
2 in the south.
3 Q. Was that the zone under the protection of the United Nations?
4 A. Yes, under full UN protection, and there were about 300 Serbs who
5 were killed.
6 Q. So the United Nations did not defend them.
7 A. The United Nations went away and the soldiers of Kenyan Battalion
8 and some other battalion lost their lives, and this was rumoured, but
9 Croatia was never accused nor did they ask that these people be punished.
10 Q. So the United Nations failed to protect and defend them. Then it
11 goes on to say: " ... on the basis of that they ordered a general
12 mobilisation," and then it says, "on the basis of which all conscripts of
13 the Republic of Serbian Krajina ..." So who are we talking about here?
14 Are we talking about citizens of Krajina who were conscripts of the
15 Republic of Serbian Krajina or anybody else's citizens?
16 A. Only the citizens of the Republic of Serbian Krajina.
17 Q. So they were the only ones that could be the conscripts of the
18 Republic of Serbian Krajina; right?
19 A. Yes. And can I add something, Mr. President? The representatives
20 of the United Nations --
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Please don't add anything. Let's move on.
22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. So it was their duty, these conscripts, to report, and they would
24 be taken in.
25 Look at point 4 now, please. Who assigns these conscripts? They
1 are being allowed to gather somewhere on the territory of Serbia and
2 Montenegro, and what does it say in paragraph 4? Who is sending them?
3 The assignments -- what does it say?
4 A. "The assignments of the conscript soldiers will be performed by
5 the government office of the Republic of Serbian Krajina in Belgrade, Mosa
6 Pijada Street ..." et cetera, telephone --
7 Q. All right, you don't have to read that.
8 A. It's my office.
9 Q. So it says sending conscripts to the government office of the
10 Republic of Serbian Krajina; is that right?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Thank you, Mr. Jarcevic.
13 A. Well, the state functioned. That's what it means.
14 Q. Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff also showed you another document, a letter, in
15 fact, at that time by the minister of foreign affairs, Milan Martic. It
16 dates to 1993, April, and the letter was sent to the presidents and
17 minister, and it speaks about the difficult financial situation. Do you
18 have that document?
19 A. Yes, here it is.
20 Q. All right. Fine. Now, just read out these critical words in the
21 first paragraph. He speaks about the highly unfavourable material and
22 financial situation. So what was this about? What does it mean
23 "unfavourable material and function situation"? Was it about anything
24 else but that?
25 A. No.
1 Q. So it's an unfavourable material and financial situation that he
2 is addressing. And what does he say at the end of that paragraph? Within
3 the frameworks of your possibilities ask for your assistance. Is that
4 what it says?
5 A. Yes, that's what it says.
6 Q. So it says: "I have an unfavourable material and financial
7 situation. Please give us assistance as far as you can."
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. So who else can the -- somebody from the Republic of Serbian
10 Krajina ask aid and assistance from in terms of material and financial
11 aid? What other country? Serbia first and foremost, I assume.
12 A. Yes, that's right.
13 Q. Now, take a look at the last paragraph. What does it say there?
14 "Even though we are aware of difficult economic situation of the Republic
15 of Serbia, we believe you will find ways to secure certain funds and send
16 them to this Ministry as assistance." He says "assistance" once again;
17 "as assistance."
18 So was there any question of Serbia -- or, rather, was it that
19 Serbia, the people, the nation, were asked to send aid and that they did
20 do so?
21 A. Had Serbia done anything else, it would have been an ally of
23 Q. Well, had it not assisted, we would be scoundrels of the worst
24 kind. Helped out in a difficult situation.
25 Now, we're just commenting on what you published, and you were
1 shown this news item by Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff. It was -- it says the
2 Jarcevic -- Foreign Minister Jarcevic says that the Croatian --
3 THE INTERPRETER: A little slower, please. Could the speaker
4 please read more slowly, thank you.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, please read more slowly.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well, Mr. Robinson.
7 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Do you know -- what efforts were made, both by the international
9 representatives and Krajina - Nikolic was the Prime Minister - along with
10 great support from Belgrade, to endeavour to normalise relations between
11 Knin and Zagreb? The expression "normalise relations between Knin and
12 Zagreb," was that something that was present during that time all the
13 time, in the forefront?
14 A. Most of the proposals and wishes came from the government of
15 Krajina, Serbia, and Yugoslavia to establish peace with Croatia. Now, as
16 far as normalisation of traffic was concerned and other aspects of life
17 were concerned, from 1992 to 1995 we always offered the Croats passage
18 through the Maslenica bridge. They never wanted to accept that because
19 they kept informing their people that we were preventing this and
20 therefore planned a military settling of accounts with us.
21 Q. All right. Thank you. I'm not going to show you any more
22 documents, although there were quite a few of them. But you said when
23 Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff quoted something that the then Norwegian Foreign
24 Minister Knut Vollebaek said, you said that he wasn't to be trusted and
25 believed. What do you base that on?
1 A. Mr. President, I said that on the basis of his testimony, which is
2 highly unreliable, not true. And I did say yesterday, and I'll explain
3 this, that he also stole my bag at the airport in Oslo. If the Trial
4 Chamber is interested in hearing more about that --
5 Q. Well, I'm sure they're interested if the minister steals a bag.
6 That doesn't go to his credit.
7 A. Well, he wasn't the foreign minister at that time. He was to
8 become foreign minister later on. Well, quite -- it was very simple for
9 him to be angry with the Croats who didn't sign the agreement. He went
10 across the runway with me and was angry because two hours before that,
11 before the official declaration that the Croats refused to sign, I had let
12 the foreign press agencies know about that beforehand. And he said,
13 "You've destroyed my career by doing that because you leaked the news two
14 hours in advance."
15 Q. What happened?
16 A. Well, we received Tudjman's letter before them that the Croatian
17 delegation had to return to Zagreb and was not allowed to sign the draft
18 agreement that had already been agreed upon. We received this earlier on.
19 It was a surprise for the Croatian security detail who led the Croatian
20 delegation to the negotiations, and of course I sent this news to the
21 cabinet in Belgrade and they informed the press agencies that Tudjman's
22 letter would arrive tomorrow, vetoing the Croatian delegation at secret
23 negotiations to sign the agreement that was proposed by the international
25 And instead of being angry at Croatia, Vollebaek was angry at me.
1 And I was carrying my bag or suitcase, my bag. I had all my belongings
2 with me, and our delegation boarded one vehicle, the Croatian delegation
3 went into another car, and Mr. Vollebaek said to me, "You know, the
4 Croatian luggage will be stored in one part of the plane and the Serb
5 luggage will be stored in other part of the plane, and Mr. Jarcevic please
6 believe me when I say that these belongings of yours, your luggage, that
7 the state security will be responsible for your luggage, the Norwegian
8 state security, so put your luggage over there, your suitcase over there.
9 So it would have been bad manners had I refused, so I put my bag -- I
10 loaded it up onto the vehicle that was transporting the luggage of the
11 delegation of the Republic of Serbian Krajina.
12 Now, since the Croats went from Budapest on another flight, we
13 stayed on in the same plane, we landed in Belgrade, and my bag was nowhere
14 to be seen. Since I had some photographs of the house I was born in in
15 the bag and my uncle's photographs which the Croats had set fire to and
16 destroyed in Bosnia during those days, I sent a letter to Zagreb and I
17 said, "Mr. Vollebaek, please return my bag to me. I want all my
18 belongings to be inside it, especially the photographs which are very
19 valuable to me because they -- I cannot take other photographs of them
20 because it's been destroyed. Unless you do so, if you fail to do so, I
21 shall sue for damages."
22 Three days later I was informed by an official in my cabinet, in
23 my offices, that during my absence Vollebaek turned up, handed over the
24 suitcase without a -- uttering a single word, and disappeared. Nothing
1 Q. Thank you, Mr. Jarcevic. This was very --
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm sorry. Mr. Jarcevic, you concluded from what
3 happened that Mr. Vollebaek had stolen your bag. It doesn't sound like
4 that to me. It was just a mix-up, which quite often happens, and you're
5 being a little unfair to Mr. Vollebaek in describing him as a thief.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I informed you that he said he would
7 guarantee that nothing would happen to my luggage, and this was an
8 obligation conditioning the agreement.
9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Well, we're not challenging that he brought the bag back.
11 A. But how did he happen to have it?
12 Q. Well, it didn't get lost with him --
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: You're finished?
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, I have. I thank the witness.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You're welcome.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Jarcevic, that concludes your testimony.
17 Thank you for coming to the Tribunal to give it, and you may now leave.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too.
19 [The witness withdrew]
20 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
22 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: I would just like to inform in particular
23 Judge Bonomy, who asked about the mass graves in Marino Selo and Pakracka
24 Poljana. We actually have heard evidence on these matters. In
25 particular, Ivan Grujic testified on these issues at page 17376 and 17377,
1 speaking about an exhumation in Pakracka Poljana with 19 Serb victims in
2 one mass grave. And also other witnesses such as, for instance, C-037
3 addressed this issue at page 10854 to 10857. And I have also inquired
4 within the Office of the Prosecutor, and Mr. Bob Reid, who was there in a
5 very early stage of the Tribunal, actually confirmed that an investigator
6 of our office worked on both these locations but as it is -- was something
7 done in 1994, 1995, he was not able to actually come up with the results
8 on whether exhumation had taken place under -- under -- with the
9 participation of the OTP. That's so long ago. It will take more time.
10 If you want to know more on this, then we'll dig further.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm very grateful for that. Thank you,
12 Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, since I don't have
14 those numbers, page numbers, before me, is Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff speaking
15 about the testimony of their witnesses about the number of Serb victims?
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff.
17 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, Your Honour. It was Witness Ivan
18 Grujic, from the Croatian office, who --
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right, all right.
20 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: -- talked about this exhumation.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right. I ask because Jarcevic
22 here in his letter referred to 2.500 Serbs that were killed, and then we
23 heard the figure of 19, and that seems to be a bit of a difference,
24 doesn't it?
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Your next witness, Mr. Milosevic.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The next witness is Ms. Alice Mahon.
2 [The witness entered court]
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let the witness make the declaration.
4 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
5 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: You may sit.
7 You may begin, Mr. Milosevic.
8 WITNESS: ALICE MAHON
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I intend to start, but I'm waiting
10 for them to assist the lady; to give her her headphones, et cetera,
11 because I assume that we won't be able to work without them.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: She is now equipped, so you may begin.
13 Examination by Mr. Milosevic:
14 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Mahon, could you please introduce yourself
16 A. Yes. My name is Alice Mahon. I was the MP, the member of
17 parliament for Halifax in West Yorkshire for 18 years until I stood down
18 at the general election of May 2005. I helped to form and chaired the
19 Committee for Peace in the Balkans. I'm widely travelled in the former
20 Yugoslavia and was elected to the NATO parliamentary Assembly in 1992, and
21 I remained a member of that Assembly until I stood down in 2005. I was a
22 member of the Civilian Affairs Committee, which has now been renamed and
23 called the Civic Dimensions of Security. I chaired the subcommittee on
24 civic governments for four years and travelled during the civil war in
25 Yugoslavia to many parts of that country with the committee, and I also
1 chaired the whole committee for four years until October of 2005.
2 The many places I visited in the former Yugoslavia, some I visited
3 two or three times, were Sarajevo, Knin, Vukovar, Belgrade, Macedonia,
4 Slovenia, parts of Croatia, Krajina, Republika Srpska, Kosovo, Banja Luka,
5 Serbia obviously, Novi Sad, Belgrade, Kragujevac. I visited during the
6 civil war with the international women's movement also. I went
7 independently to Sarajevo, to Banja Luka. I was there during a period
8 when the now secretary of state for defence, Dr. John Reid, was there, but
9 I was with an independent group of women from the different ethnic
11 I never in all my travels met the main leaders of the various
12 groups in Yugoslavia, including Mr. Milosevic, who I met for the first
13 time this week. Others, including the secretary of state for defence, did
14 meet with, for example, Dr. Karadzic and General Mladic.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Mahon, may I ask you, to what party did you
16 belong when you were a member of parliament?
17 THE WITNESS: I was a member of the Labour Party, Mr. Robinson.
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.
19 THE WITNESS: So I went against my own government, in effect, with
20 my position on the former Yugoslavia, because I was totally opposed to
21 what I considered to be an illegal bombing by NATO. I made my views very
22 clear, and of course I'm on the record, both in the NATO parliamentary
23 Assembly and in my own parliament, for taking that stance. I did not
24 believe that we had the legal right to bomb a sovereign state, and I did
25 not believe there was an impending catastrophe looming in Kosovo. Thank
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
3 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Ms. Mahon, you mentioned a few moments ago that you were one of
5 the founders of the Committee for Peace in the Balkans. When was this
6 Committee for Peace in the Balkans established, and can you tell us a bit
7 more about its activities?
8 A. Yes. The Committee for Peace in the Balkans - and I have one of
9 their publications here the Court might be interested perhaps in looking
10 at - was established in '93, 1993, and it opposed military intervention by
11 NATO and others in the Yugoslavian situation. It stood for lifting of
12 sanctions against the whole Yugoslavia, so it was a peaceful union that we
13 set up. We wanted financial assistance to be increased and given in large
14 measure to reconstruct the civilian infrastructure of the whole of
15 Yugoslavia. We were campaigning for urgent humanitarian assistance on a
16 non-discriminatory basis for all the refugees who had been called -- who
17 had been created because of the civil war.
18 Other parties joined the Committee for Peace in the Balkans, so it
19 was a cross-party committee, and we also had big support from the major
20 trade unions in the United Kingdom. The main theme of the committee and
21 the main aim of the committee was that we believed that military
22 intervention would exacerbate tensions rather than bring peace to what was
23 a troubled region. The committee's entirely funded by donations of its
24 supporters, and we got regular contributions in the form of standing
25 orders and people just coming along to meetings. We organised a number of
1 meetings all around Great Britain. We attended major conferences, trade
2 union conferences, and always put forward the principles on which the
3 committee was formed.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Ms. Mahon.
5 Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Ms. Mahon, on the basis of the information that you have provided
8 just now at the very outset, it is clear that you were a member of
9 parliament at the critical time in 1998 and 1999, and earlier on as well,
10 but now I shall focus first and foremost on that particular period. I'm
11 going to put a question to you. As for the reasons for the bombing of the
12 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, a countless number of times the following
13 was mentioned: Preventing a humanitarian catastrophe in Kosovo. My
14 question to you is the following: As a member of the British parliament
15 and as, we can see, the chairman of relevant committees, did you get a
16 single shred of information from various agencies, competent agencies of
17 Great Britain that there was a looming humanitarian catastrophe in Kosovo?
18 A. No. On the contrary. I went to Macedonia, to Kumanovo, three
19 weeks before the bombing started in Yugoslavia, with the NATO
20 parliamentary Assembly subcommittee. We stayed in Skopje in the
21 Aleksandar Hotel in Macedonia, and we went to the extraction force base
22 near the border with Kosovo where we were briefed by General Valentin and
23 General David Montgomery. They were there to lift out the OSCE
24 verification monitors should they need to be extracted should firefights
25 or hostilities break out again, but at that time there was relative calm.
1 We did go on to the border with the United Nations troops to watch an
2 incident, and we were a mixed group of members of different NATO
3 parliaments, and we -- the Danish officer in charge explained to us that
4 some people -- and we could see through the field glasses. It was
5 explained to us that some people had left their homes 24 hours earlier,
6 and we saw them going back, some in vehicles and some just coming down a
7 path through the woods. And they said that they had been a firefight
8 between the Yugoslav security forces and members of the KLA or UCK,
9 whatever they're called.
10 One of my colleagues asked were they Albanians who were returning
11 to their home, and the Danish soldier said no, as a matter of fact, this
12 particular group were Serbs. It's quite common, if a firefight starts,
13 people get out of the way. And that was his explanation.
14 We did not feel, at the conclusion of that visit, that there was
15 going to be a massive exodus of people, although some people were, as the
16 one we witnessed, leaving. But we'd been told over and over again by our
17 Prime Minister Tony Blair --
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: May I ask --
19 THE WITNESS: Yes, sorry.
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: You say you did not feel --
21 THE WITNESS: No.
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: -- that there was going to be a massive exodus of
23 people. Why is that?
24 THE WITNESS: Talking to the soldiers on the ground, Mr. Robinson.
25 It's something I think I always did in all the years I was a member of
1 NATO, was trying to engage in conversation with soldiers, because
2 servicemen and women by and large don't have a political axe to grind.
3 Quite often you get to know the truth. Sometimes the truth about their
4 officers as well, which doesn't always make for easy telling. But also at
5 home with some of the reports --
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: So you gathered this from --
7 THE WITNESS: From mixing with the military personnel and the UN
8 personnel on the border as well, yeah.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: I see.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Mahon, I didn't catch the date of this visit.
11 THE WITNESS: This visit was three weeks before the bombing
12 started in 1999.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
14 THE WITNESS: Actually, to the day almost. The NATO parliamentary
15 Assembly reports are all accessible on the NATO internet, to confirm the
16 committee's visit.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Ms. Mahon, you did not receive any information on a looming
20 humanitarian catastrophe, but how do you explain the fact that your Prime
21 Minister Blair said in public that there was a humanitarian catastrophe in
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: She can't explain that. Next -- another
24 question, please.
25 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Ms. Mahon --
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] But perhaps she can, Mr. Robinson.
3 Perhaps she can.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: No. I'm not allowing her. That's not a matter
5 for her.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.
7 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Ms. Mahon, did you have occasion to talk to your Prime Minister,
9 Mr. Blair, about the attack on Yugoslavia?
10 THE WITNESS: Oh, yes. With a number of MPs. I saw Mr. Blair and
11 Robin Cook, the foreign secretary, on a number of occasions. I believed
12 and the Committee for Peace in the Balkans and some other members of
13 parliament believed that NATO was looking for a new role. We had many,
14 many discussions in the NATO parliamentary Assembly about the role of NATO
15 with the ending of the Cold War, and we were worried that if NATO took
16 this unilateral action, then it would open Pandora's box and they could do
17 it elsewhere. I think events in Iraq and Afghanistan have proved us
19 I had a lot to do with the Prime Minister during this period
20 because I asked a number of questions. I also saw the foreign secretary,
21 because I'm sure people will be aware - it's certainly on the record in
22 Hansard - that on January the 18th of 1999 Robin Cook told the House of
23 Commons that since the cease-fire agreement and since the agreement to
24 reduce the number of security forces in Kosovo, the biggest number of
25 violations that had been -- had taken place in Kosovo had been perpetrated
1 by the KLA and not by the security services. And he told us that in the
2 House of Commons on the 18th of January, 1999.
3 So I -- I took it that we were all pleased. We thought this was
4 going to avert NATO going in heavy handed because they see now that the
5 Yugoslavs are sticking to their side of the bargain.
6 MR. NICE: Your Honours, before the next question, there is
7 obviously a question of relevance about this witness's evidence. I'm
8 unlikely to challenge, of course, the sincerity of her views or anything
9 of that sort, if her evidence is valuable to you, but we're not
10 investigating the reasons for the bombing. We are investigating the
11 underlying facts that are proved by evidence of those facts, and there is
12 either a limit, or almost a limit to the value that opinions of this kind,
13 sincere though they may very well be, can have. But as I say, I don't
14 want to stop the witness or to seem to be shutting out evidence if the
15 Chamber finds it to be helpful.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Kay, do you have anything to say on the
17 general issue of relevance?
18 MR. KAY: As the Chamber knows, the accused is defending this case
19 on the basis of self-defence and the role and activity of the KLA, as it
20 was known, before the NATO bombing and the events caused by the KLA before
21 the NATO bombing which can be linked to events after the NATO bombing
22 which is the period when most of the charges against this accused rise --
23 arise in the indictment. There is only one specific incident, Racak, on
24 the 15th of January, before the NATO bombing. In those circumstances, the
25 evidence of this witness may well be of great use to the Tribunal if she
1 is able to explain what she saw and knew at the time, remembering that the
2 accused's case is that the KLA were acting in a way to cause conflict with
3 the Serb forces, provoking the Serb forces to react. They themselves were
4 instigating acts of violence, were staging, if you like to use that word,
5 or causing people to leave en masse in a walkout or exodus from the region
6 to provoke the international forces of NATO to attack the former
7 Yugoslavia, the FRY as it was.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: In our view, at this stage at any rate, the
10 evidence is relevant.
11 Mr. Milosevic, please continue.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Robinson.
13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Ms. Mahon, in view of the office you held - and there is no need
15 for me to repeat all the positions you held - do you know for when the
16 bombing of Yugoslavia by NATO was planned?
17 A. I only know what probably the Court already knows in that
18 Madeleine Albright's number two, James Rubin, had already said that
19 contingency plans, say August, 1978 [sic] he'd already made it public, and
20 the Court I'm sure has seen the publication that contingency plans were
21 being made, and of course we do know from experience on NATO that to
22 conduct a bombing of this scale takes a certain amount of preparation. It
23 cannot be just gone into overnight. So I'm pretty certain from reports
24 coming to NATO and to the NATO parliamentary Assembly - and we had our
25 annual meeting in the October and I'd been on one or two subcommittees
1 during that period - that there was widespread discussion amongst NATO
2 parliamentarians about the preparations that were taking place. We were
3 all perhaps lulled into a false sense of security with the October
4 agreement, 1998, that maybe this was a chance to avert bombing. But I do
5 want to emphasise again that, politically, NATO was looking for another
6 role. The expansion of NATO as it took in the Baltic states and some of
7 the countries of the former Soviet Union had occupied it for a number of
8 years, and I think it's important that the Court realise that NATO is
9 controlled by the Americans. I make no apology for being political about
10 that. I am a politician, and I did observe it firsthand, the absolute
11 power that America ran NATO with.
12 Could I add something else about the parliament?
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: No. We'll proceed by way of questions and
15 THE WITNESS: Okay. That's fine.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, next question.
17 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Ms. Mahon. Ms. Mahon, are you aware of the explanation proffered
19 in the West for the attack on Yugoslavia, to prevent some kind of
20 genocide? Are you aware of that?
21 A. No. That word was certainly not -- not being used then. We were
22 told that the -- the Yugoslav security forces were repressing the
23 Albanians, but we were all aware, even the people who supported the -- the
24 bombing, that the KLA were organised and were a guerilla faction within a
25 sovereign state, and having gone through the Northern Ireland experience
1 in the United Kingdom, we know that countries have a right to stop
2 terrorists or guerilla activities and also have a right to defend their
3 borders. I think -- I think that's the right of any sovereign state. So
4 I suppose it depends which side of the argument you were on, but I
5 certainly was not -- we were told that there was going to be massive
6 ethnic cleansing and that that was going on. The facts didn't support
7 what we were being told. And certainly my experience in Kumanovo taught
8 me that when a firefight starts or when bombs are going off, civilians, if
9 they have any sense, get out of the way.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Ms. Mahon, can you tell me, who told you there was
11 to be massive ethnic cleansing?
12 THE WITNESS: Oh, it was -- in the immediate run-up to the
13 bombing, the foreign secretary and the Prime Minister, in my opinion, made
14 some rather exaggerated claims, and I think the facts speak for
15 themselves. The mass exodus of Albanians from Kosovo started after the
16 bombing, and I think it's natural, as I will repeat, people get out of the
17 way when bombs are dropped. I had a map of --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: That's not my -- bear in mind the question I asked
20 THE WITNESS: Sorry.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: It's important to concentrate on the questions, and
22 I think you answered it. You said they exaggerated statements, without
23 any specification, but we may here more of the specification later, thank
25 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Ms. Mahon, you said that the Prime Minister and the minister were
2 making exaggerated statements. Before that, I asked you about the
3 humanitarian catastrophe that you said did not exist. Tell us, on the
4 basis of your own experience precisely from that time, was your Prime
5 Minister telling you the truth or not?
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: That's not a matter for her. That's not a matter
7 for her.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.
9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Ms. Mahon, is it true that you, together with a few other members
11 of parliament, tried to organise a vote in parliament in relation to the
12 engagement of your country in the aggression against Yugoslavia?
13 THE WITNESS: Am I allowed to answer that?
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: What's the relevance of this now, Mr. Milosevic?
15 We are straying, aren't we? What's the relevance of this?
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, Mr. Robinson, it is relevant,
17 and how, in view of the fact that there were reactions against attacking
18 Yugoslavia, and positions that were taken later on proved that that
19 reaction was right, or justified. I think it is therefore necessary to
20 know what kind of attempt was made to stop and prevent such crimes.
21 Mr. Robinson, for instance, what I have here is a periodical from
22 Great Britain. "[In English] [Previous translation continues] ...
23 Committee has reported that the NATO air war on Yugoslavia was illegal."
24 [Interpretation] That is what they said at the time.
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic. Mr. Milosevic, in my view the
1 public opinion in the United Kingdom as to the bombing and justification
2 for it is not relevant.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I'm not talking about
4 public opinion at all. I'm not talking about public opinion at all. What
5 I quoted to you was the opinion of the Foreign Relations Committee of the
6 parliament of the United Kingdom or, rather, their conclusion. It's not
7 public opinion, it is the position taken by an official organ of Great
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Yes.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I think that you should make it
11 possible for Ms. Mahon to give an answer to see what kind of attempts they
12 made at the time to have the truth established or, rather, to make it
13 impossible for their country to take part in this illegal attack on
14 Yugoslavia. I don't know why you're bothered by that.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: I say it's not relevant, and that's my ruling.
16 Ask another question.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.
18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Ms. Mahon, did the parliament of which you were a member take any
20 kind of position in connection with Kosovo before the beginning of the
22 A. No. We were not -- in the British parliament, we're not allowed a
23 vote on whether to go to war. The first time we've been allowed to vote
24 on going to war was on Iraq when, as you are aware, 141 Labour MPs voted
25 against. But we -- the Prime Minister takes us to war under the Royal
1 prerogative. The only thing we could vote on was the adjournment of the
2 House, that the House did not adjourn, and that's what we did. A few of
3 us organised that.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, bring the witness to issues that
5 are relevant to the indictment. And do not try to use her evidence for
6 non-forensic purposes.
7 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Ms. Mahon, what was your standpoint, in view of the office you
9 held, about the NATO campaign against Yugoslavia?
10 A. I thought it was illegal. I still think it was illegal. I think
11 it opened the way for the invasion of Iraq.
12 Q. Can you say with certainty what the real reason was for the
14 THE WITNESS: Am I allowed to answer this? It's saying "No
15 broadcast" on here, on the screen, and the court is in recess it's saying.
16 MR. NICE: Can she say what was the real reason for the bombing is
17 the question. I venture to suggest it's not a question that she can
19 THE WITNESS: It's okay. It's come back on. It had switched off.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just a minute.
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, I think she already said what the reason
24 was, but we will allow her to comment briefly.
25 THE WITNESS: Sorry. The question was what was the reason --
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
2 THE WITNESS: -- for the bombing. I think it was purely
3 political. I think it was an extension of American influence in the area.
4 And I am a politician, so I do talk in politics. I think it was to do
5 with the break-up of Yugoslavia, and they had to -- they'd already
6 intervened in the Krajina, they'd already intervened by training -- the
7 SAS and the CIA were training the KLA guerrillas. We had notice of that,
8 it was in the press, and we discussed it at some length on the NATO
9 parliamentary Assembly, and I think it was just a matter of time before
10 the bombing started.
11 We also know that Bill Clinton was in something of a mess
12 domestically. Madeleine Albright was already making plans, as I said, in
13 the summer previous to the bombing, and with hindsight, it seemed to me
14 that they were going to do it just as we saw with the preparations for the
15 Iraq war. I think America now has a base in Kosovo and will remain there,
16 and their bases are now dotted all over what was a former different
17 economic system to theirs.
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: And there is no need to apologise for being a
19 politician. Politics is a noteworthy profession.
20 THE WITNESS: The training of the KLA was widely reported. John
21 Simpson, a very eminent journalist in the United Kingdom, reported that
22 the CIA trained the KLA and left them very, very well equipped when the
23 bombing started, and certainly they had some extraordinarily good weapons.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic, next question.
25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, for Mr. Milosevic.
1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. What do you know about the KLA? What did you know at the time,
3 apart from what you've already mentioned, that Robin Cook said that they
4 were the ones violating the cease-fire and so on? What do you know about
5 the KLA?
6 A. Well, I know that 12 months before they were on America's most
7 wanted list of terrorists and that there was a complete change of mind by
8 the Americans and overnight almost they became their allies. Mr. Cook
9 probably was a convert, a convert to the KLA somewhat later, when he was
10 let in on the act, because on the 18th of January, 1999, he was telling us
11 they were committing most of the violations, and as we know, a couple of
12 months later they were our allies, and our armed forces and our aircraft
13 were used to help bomb Yugoslavia, a sovereign state that had done us no
14 harm or was no threat to us in any way at all.
15 Q. You mentioned a little while ago that immediately before the
16 bombing you were at the Macedonian border in order to see what the
17 situation was in Kosovo and Metohija. Later, after the war, you visited
18 Kosovo and Metohija again, as far as I know, in 1999. Were you able to
19 meet any KLA leaders or ordinary soldiers or their families?
20 A. Yes. I went with the NATO parliamentary Assembly in September
21 1999. We stayed in the camp, in the tents at the -- overlooking Pristina
22 in the old film studio, and we met -- we toured, obviously, the area. We
23 saw a lot of the damage because colleagues were saying - it was a sort of
24 guessing game - who did that, then? And nearly all of the massive damage
25 obviously was done by NATO.
1 We met Mr. Hashim Thaci, who is a well-known leader of the KLA.
2 He was with Mr. Bernard Kouchner, who was the administrator immediately
3 after the bombings stopped. We had a meeting with other leaders,
4 including one from the minorities, a Serb, and also a gentleman from the
5 Roma community.
6 Mr. Thaci -- may chair of the committee at that time was an
7 Italian senator at that time, Senator Migoni, and he described Mr. Thaci
8 as somebody you would not like to meet without having some bodyguards.
9 Mr. Thaci denied totally that there was any harassment of the minorities,
10 but we just listened to both the Roma leader and the Serb leader telling
11 us about the killings and the burnings of houses that were going on
12 against the minorities, but Mr. Thaci just very coldly dismissed it,
13 wouldn't discuss it. And knowing something of Mr. Thaci's background, I
14 wasn't surprised.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Did you form the same impression of Mr. Thaci as
16 the Italian, that you would not wish to meet him without bodyguards?
17 THE WITNESS: Absolutely. He was very cold, quite hostile because
18 he was meeting politicians, so he probably -- probably gathered that we
19 were not totally supportive. And of course we were getting the stories
20 from other people about reprisals on the civilian population, the minority
21 civilian population.
22 Mr. Kouchner was more diplomatic and did point out that the forces
23 -- the occupying forces were trying to prevent this happening, but of
24 course at that time it was shortly after, just a few months after and the
25 killings and kidnappings, burning of houses, were a regular occurrences.
1 And burning of churches as well, which was very disturbing.
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Did you visit the area on any other occasion?
3 THE WITNESS: Yes. I -- I've been back to Kosovo --
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, no, during the conflict.
5 THE WITNESS: Yes, I did. I went to -- to Yugoslavia with a
6 reporter from the Daily Mirror and the photographer. The Daily Mirror is
7 a tabloid newspaper.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: When?
9 THE WITNESS: That was during the bombing. I went to -- from
10 Hungary. I was criticised quite heavily by my own party for going, but I
11 wanted to see what was going on.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: And where did you go?
13 THE WITNESS: I went to Novi Sad in Vojvodina first. The Yugoslav
14 security forces insisted on sending a car. The Mirror paid for part of
15 the expenses, I paid for part, but they provided a car for us. They
16 wouldn't let us in, on the basis that they were being bombed and it was
17 dangerous, unless they provided protection, and I think, probably with
18 hindsight -- we wanted our own car and we argued, but with hindsight, it
19 was probably a good thing.
20 We went to Novi Sad where we were allowed to just get out and mix.
21 We got out onto the last remaining bridge that had not been bombed at that
22 time, the one with the railway across it, and there was a huge
23 demonstration taking place. So we got out and we talked to people. The
24 Mirror talked to whoever they wanted to, took as many photographs as they
25 wanted. I talked to quite a number of people. They were very mixed
1 ethnically because Vojvodina is. I think there are 25 different ethnic
2 groups in Vojvodina.
3 The guards started to get a bit -- the guards, the car driver,
4 started to get a bit anxious because we were there a couple of hours, and
5 they said we had to get to Belgrade before it became dark because the
6 bombing started at night. So we left and we went to the International
7 Hotel in -- Intercontinental Hotel in Belgrade.
8 During the evening we saw the bombers come and bomb the oil
9 refinery in Pancevo. It was quite frightening, really. It was -- I'm 68
10 years old, I can just remember the Second World War and the sound of
11 sirens, and I have to say it did have a bit of effect.
12 The following day we got our drivers back. Our cameraman almost
13 got arrested. He wandered off by himself and, as you can imagine, when
14 they heard an English voice they were not too happy and they called the
15 police and the police did accept his explanation, Bill Rowntree. And the
16 following day we went to Pancevo to see if we could talk to some of the
17 workers there. A couple of them agreed to talk to us. The rest were
18 quite hostile to us even though I was saying and Bill was saying that we
19 didn't approve of the bombing. The reporter, Ms. Johnson, did approve of
20 it but she didn't say anything. But we did talk to them and they did say
21 that they were continuously being bombed in that complex.
22 The thing that worried me was the small -- with the houses nearby
23 and the small village, small town, because the stench and the fumes and
24 toxic waste coming from that bombing must have been very bad for the
25 civilian population.
1 We then sent to -- we went to a place called Kragujevac where the
2 huge Zastava car factory had been. That car factory had a small annex
3 that made shooting -- fancy shooting guns. They're quite well known, I
4 understand, in gun circles for these exceptionally good hunting rifles, et
5 cetera. But the car factory itself had been hit by 22 cruise missiles.
6 It was just wrecked.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Did you see anybody fleeing their homes in --
8 THE WITNESS: No. No. We saw some refugees in Kragujevac, but
9 they were from another conflict in the Krajina. We visited them.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: All right. Thank you.
11 Mr. Milosevic.
12 THE WITNESS: We -- sorry.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I was waiting, Mr. Robinson, for the
14 interpretation to end. The interpretation went on for quite a long time.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
16 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Ms. Mahon, on the occasion of your visit to our country during the
18 bombing, you have just described several events. Is that all you saw
19 during that visit; Novi Sad, bridges destroyed, the Pancevo refinery,
20 Kragujevac, Zastava, the car factory? Are these all the places you
21 visited in the course of that visit?
22 A. No. I went to a small town called Cuprija, and they had been
23 bombed because a couple of miles outside the town there was an old
24 military dormitory, but the bombs had missed and hit the town and 400
25 dwellings had been damaged. Some had been completely wiped out. Luckily,
1 only one person was killed and seven injured.
2 The mayor of the town, who was not one of your supporters,
3 Mr. Milosevic, had voted against you, and so had the town, that the mayor
4 of the town showed us around. We saw a nurses' home that had been damaged
5 by the bombs. We visited a dentist and his wife whose house had been
6 written off, basically, and she was injured, but they were just thankful
7 they were living. But the damage to Cuprija was extensive. These were
8 civilian targets that were being hit by NATO bombs.
9 Q. Ms. Mahon, during your visit you saw many places and many events.
10 The places you saw, were they military targets where you saw the effects
11 of the NATO bombing, or were these civilian facilities, or both?
12 A. I didn't see any military targets at all. Now, we were under war
13 conditions and we -- had we asked to see them we might have -- they might
14 have refused us, but certainly the car factory, the trade unions there -
15 and I met the trade unionists who organised in the factory - had sent the
16 coordinates of the factory to NATO, every country in NATO, including the
17 Pentagon, saying, please, this is a factory that makes cars and tractors -
18 and that's all we saw as we walked around for hours in that factory -
19 please don't bomb us. It's miracle -- and they were having a sit-in every
20 night, and it's a miracle that those workers were not killed. Some of
21 them were injured and rather gruesomely. The photographer took a
22 photograph of where they had been sitting and the blood on chairs. We did
23 talk to the leader of the trade union, the secretary, who said we had
24 pleaded with the world, please don't bomb us.
25 And I have to say these -- these civilian targets, I think they
1 were targeted deliberately. But the tragedy about Zastava car factory is
2 there was a big heating plant there that supplied heating for almost all
3 of the town, and that went. The tragedy about that bridge I stood on -
4 because it was bombed two nights later, there are -- there were no bridges
5 left in Novi Sad over the Danube - it carried water and other supplies
6 across to the other side of the town. So these were targets that hurt
7 ordinary people, and people were dying under those bombs. You know,
8 they're not this pinpoint accuracy. It's just another sort of Hollywood
9 myth. Those bombs do go astray and they do hit civilian targets, and I
10 feel passionately that NATO should be in the dock in this place as well.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic. One more question before the
13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Ms. Mahon, to go back to the Verification Mission in Kosovo late
15 1998, early 1999, are you aware of the activities of the Verification
16 Mission in Kosovo in that time period?
17 A. Yes. I -- during the 1980s I took a great interest in what was
18 happening in Central America. It was one of my interests in foreign
19 affairs, and I visited Nicaragua and El Salvador, and so Mr. William
20 Walker, who was in charge of the OSCE mission, was somebody I knew well.
21 His reputation went before him. He presided over, in El Salvador --
22 Q. Just a moment. Just a moment. From when did you know William
23 Walker? You said you knew him. When did you get to know him?
24 A. I went to Nicaragua and to El Salvador during the 1980s, when the
25 nuns and priests were killed in El Salvador. Mr. Walker denied the
1 existence of the death squads. He also ran the Contra, the illegal
2 Contras who attacked the democratic government of Nicaragua. He's very,
3 very well known in Central American circles. And so I was dismayed when
4 he headed up the Verification Mission.
5 I -- my committee went into great detail about the Racak massacre
6 and we stood it, and we had speakers over to talk to us about the forensic
7 evidence, the Committee for Peace in the Balkans.
8 It was also widely discussed on the NATO parliamentary Assembly,
9 and the view was taken that Mr. Walker in many circles - in many circles,
10 not just Committee for Peace in the Balkans - that Mr. Walker had perhaps
11 arranged an incident, tragic as the deaths of those people were. And of
12 course Racak was used to bring in Rambouillet and ultimately to bring in
13 the bombing of Yugoslavia.
14 I also, with the Verification Mission, when I was in Kumanovo, met
15 some of the OSCE verification monitors in the hotel we were staying in,
16 Aleksandar Hotel. Two or three of them came to have a night off and a
17 rest. They were convinced, those people we spoke to, had the verification
18 monitors been doubled, that they were doing some good work and were trying
19 to bring the communities together, and I do think, a bit like the weapons
20 inspections in Iraq, I think it's a pity they weren't allowed to get on
21 and finish the job.
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Mahon, that's a very serious allegation to
23 make against Mr. Walker, to have concluded that --
24 THE WITNESS: Yeah --
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: -- he had arranged the incident at Racak.
1 THE WITNESS: Well, I think some of the forensic people and many
2 other observers have made the same observation, Mr. Robinson. Now, I
3 don't know. I'm -- I'm just telling you what people concluded from the
4 talks they were given, from the discussions they had. I certainly don't
5 think we should have destroyed a country based on what Mr. William Walker
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: I gather that you also agreed with that --
8 THE WITNESS: Yes, I think there is something highly suspicious
9 about what happened at Racak.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: But to say that Mr. Walker arranged it, that's a
11 very serious --
12 THE WITNESS: Well, would you like me to say that I think
13 Mr. Walker just happened to be there, and people disagreed with him
14 profoundly about that being a massacre.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, it's already gone further because you've
16 indicated that other people have already expressed a view that he arranged
17 the incident, and you talk about forensic people and many other observers,
18 so I think we need to hear who they are.
19 THE WITNESS: Yeah. We had speakers come to the Committee for
20 Peace in the Balkans and who expressed the view that Racak was not the
21 massacre that -- I suppose I can get you that information from the
22 archives, if you like. They'd be putting a political joint of view.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, a forensic person involved, you wouldn't
24 expect to be putting a political point of view.
25 THE WITNESS: No, no. People speaking about the forensic
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Not some --
3 THE WITNESS: No, no, not --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: You're not referring to the forensic --
5 THE WITNESS: Not the forensic scientists themselves, although I
6 have seen the film where -- the BBC showed the film where there were
7 doubts expressed.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, if this -- that answer had been left that
9 way, it could have been very misleading.
10 THE WITNESS: Okay.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: We will adjourn now for 20 minutes.
12 --- Recess taken at 10.36 a.m.
13 --- On resuming at 10.57 a.m.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Kay?
15 MR. KAY: Before we resume, Your Honour, may I raise an urgent
16 administrative matter, and it concerns the scheduling for next week. The
17 witness Momir Bulatovic has travel difficulties. He would not be arriving
18 until Tuesday. The case is scheduled to resume on Wednesday next week.
19 Bulatovic is a very big witness, requiring a great deal of preparation.
20 At the moment I'm aware of the fact that those acting on behalf of
21 Mr. Milosevic in preparing his witnesses are trying to fill in for next
22 week, which is highly unsatisfactory as I know that it wouldn't be the
23 best use of time, whereas he will need time to deal with this significant
24 witness who will require a great deal of preparation.
25 So I have an application to make, and that is that the case be
1 adjourned next week to enable Defence preparations and that we take up the
2 schedule again resuming on the 14th of March. In my view, it would be the
3 best use of court time to enable him to be prepared properly. The Court
4 are aware of the fact that there have been personal reasons which have
5 prevented his earlier attendance in The Hague, and these are matters that
6 simply have not been able to have been got round in the interim period.
7 So in my submission, it would be in the best interests of this case if we
8 adjourned, we did not sit next week, but that we resume the hearings on
9 the 14th of March to enable essential Defence preparation.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice?
11 MR. NICE: It would be disingenuous of me not to acknowledge that
12 it happens that this would be convenient for me, as a member of the
13 Prosecution team, and I have to make that clear, as it happens. For the
14 Prosecution as a whole, our position has always been as stated, I think,
15 in our filing at Christmas that the accused's responsibility is to have
16 witnesses available on every day and that in the absence of being able to
17 call evidence, then those days should count. But I have to observe that
18 if there was a change of timetable by filling in witnesses whom only I
19 could deal with - certain topics certainly fall in that description - then
20 it might be that I wouldn't be here as a matter of fact.
21 So there's a combination of elements to my answer, and I hope
22 that's helpful.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: It's also clear, Mr. Nice, from the list that we've
24 been given that there are difficulties associated with a number of other
25 witnesses who are clearly shorter witnesses as well, and having said that,
1 it's been very helpful for us to have got this list, at least to expand
2 the information we had up until now.
3 MR. KAY: Just to add, because I didn't mention -- there are
4 problems with other witnesses as well. As I said about fitting in, there
5 are safe conduct issues, there are issues of passage, and there are great
6 difficulties I'm aware of that Mr. Tomanovic, who is the associate that
7 Mr. Milosevic has at court with him at the moment, is certainly in great
8 difficulty in trying to make things work for next week.
9 [Trial Chamber confers]
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Kay, we'll give a decision on your
11 application before the end of the proceedings today.
12 MR. KAY: Much obliged.
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, please continue.
14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. [No interpretation].
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm not getting --
17 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Madam, you said that during your visit that week you met the
19 members of the Verification Mission. What did they tell you about the
20 situation in Kosovo and Metohija?
21 A. They -- they were hopeful that conflict could be avoided. They
22 felt that they were doing a very good job. They wanted to be allowed to
23 continue to do that job. They said that some areas were difficult because
24 there was some guerrilla activity and there was some security forces
25 activity, but they were convinced they were talking to people -- they were
1 getting people to talk to each other. One woman put it to me that she --
2 she'd arranged to get people to sit down and have a cup of coffee
3 together. They were discussing the wider problems. They all concluded --
4 we met -- when I've gone back and thought about it, there were four of
5 them altogether who we met, and they all concluded that they needed to
6 double the numbers of verification monitors, that they were thinly
7 stretched on the ground and thought it would be a good way of spending
8 money if they could do that, and certainly I think they were all of the
9 conclusion they would like to have avoided the bombing that was being
11 Q. While you were taking an interest in the work of the Verification
12 Mission on that occasion and others, did you learn who the members of the
13 commission were -- of the mission?
14 A. No. We -- we were just in the same hotel. They'd come out for a
15 rest, were going back in. We just had a cup of coffee, chatted.
16 One woman, I did get her name because it was an absolute
17 coincidence. Her name was -- she was from New York. Her name was Alicia
18 Mahon, and my name is Alice Mahon and we thought that was a real
19 coincidence, so I remember her name, but the other three were young men
20 and they -- if I didn't know the name at the time I can't remember it
21 now. But certainly I remember the woman because of the coincidence about
22 the name.
23 Q. On the 12th of March, 2000, the Sunday Times reported that this
24 mission, which was supposed to be neutral, had been infiltrated by CIA
25 agents and agents of other agencies who were supporting the KLA. Did you
1 know anything about this?
2 A. As -- as a member of the NATO parliamentary Assembly, I've worked
3 with the OSCE, particularly the election monitors, on numerous occasions.
4 We all accepted that the Americans wielded a huge influence on the OSCE.
5 I recently monitored the elections in the Ukraine, and we thought we'd had
6 a good election until we read the long-term observer reports, when they
7 decided that the election had not been good.
8 So I think at all times when I've been in contact with the OSCE, I
9 have thought there's been huge American influence on -- on those
10 delegations, and I think -- I heard the same rumours, I read the same
11 reports, that the CIA had infiltrated the verification monitors in Kosovo.
12 Q. In your view, what could the consequences of that have been for
13 the role of the mission in Kosovo?
14 A. Well, I think I'm of the view, having been a long-time member of
15 the NATO parliamentary Assembly, that American foreign policy usually
16 prevails, and there are various ways of doing it. I observed this during
17 the expansion of NATO. I -- I've also had some difficulties as a chair of
18 the Civic Dimensions of Security Committee when I -- I wouldn't say just
19 the OSCE but perhaps NATO executive as well, the people who run the NATO
20 parliamentary Assembly, they seem to follow a particular agenda.
21 I'll give you an example: When I went to Latvia to -- with a
22 small group of my committee, to follow up complaints that the ethnic
23 Russian speakers in Latvia were not being given fair treatment by the
24 Latvian government and we had a couple of specific things to pursue,
25 points to pursue, I did a report that was not allowed to be published, and
1 we couldn't agree the report and so the executive produced a report. And
2 I think that's true with the OSCE as well. I think there's a political
3 agenda and I think you'd be rather naive if you didn't think there was.
4 Q. You mentioned in one of your replies the assistant of the
5 secretary of state of the USA, James Rubin. Are you aware of his
6 statement of the 3rd of August, 1998, several months before the start of
7 the bombing, in which he said that the plans were ready for action in
8 Kosovo and Metohija so that when a political decision is reached
9 intervention can be carried out very fast? He said that the number of
10 troops and the targets had already been selected and that the preparations
11 were being carried out. Did you know about this? And does what you know
12 confirm that such preparations were taking place?
13 A. Yes. I -- I read the same report in August 1998 - I have it
14 somewhere with me - from James Rubin, that contingency plans were being
15 drawn up. I actually met, along with some other MPs, Mr. Pejic from the
16 Yugoslav embassy in London, and we had a meeting before my party
17 conference where we tried to persuade him that we thought this was very,
18 very serious. He could not believe and was absolutely incredulous, he did
19 not believe that the United Kingdom would go along with the bombing of
20 Yugoslavia for all kinds of historical reasons, and we really couldn't
21 convince him. But we were convinced, some members of the Committee for
22 Peace in the Balkans, we were convinced that the plans were being drawn up
23 and there was a very realistic possibility that -- that bombing would
24 proceed, that some reason would be given for -- for the bombing, and I
25 think after Racak the Rambouillet peace accord was drawn up to give that
1 permission and drawn up in such a way to give that permission.
2 Q. Tell me, please, do you know what the tasks of the Yugoslav army
3 and security forces were in Kosovo?
4 A. Yes. I imagine the same as a similar situation that we had in
5 Northern Ireland: They were to seek out any terrorist activity, to -- to
6 try and stop it, to secure the borders, I imagine, and to generally
7 protect the civilian population. I know that in Northern Ireland we -- we
8 had a very difficult period, and as you know 3.000 people died in Northern
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Ms. Mahon. We are not particularly
11 interested in that.
12 THE WITNESS: Sorry, sorry. Just a comparison.
13 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. So we have here the fact that preparations were underway at least
16 in mid-1998 for the bombing, and the reasons came in 1999, the pretext
17 came in 1999. Now, in light of that, can you tell us what you know about
18 that. Did your Prime Minister Blair mislead you when it came for the
19 reasons for attacking Yugoslavia or not?
20 MR. NICE: I really must object. It gets a bit wearying. We have
21 about three presentational errors in that question. We start off with an
22 assumed fact which may simply not be a fact, I don't know, then we use the
23 word "pretext," and then we have Prime Minister Blair misleading. It's
24 not that the accused doesn't know how to ask questions, it's that he
25 chooses to ask them in an improper way. And what he seems forever to
1 overlook is that by improper questioning he diminishes or eliminates value
2 in the answer that he gets.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: That line of questioning is quite improper, as
5 you well know. It's improper because it is leading and for other reasons
6 given by the Prosecutor. I will allow you to -- to reformulate the
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, Mr. Robinson, the fact that
9 the witness talked about a moment ago, that is to say the clearly stated
10 position of the State Department in the form of James Rubin on the 3rd of
11 August, 1998, without a doubt speaks of the decision to bomb and
12 preparations that were underway several months before the pretexts that
13 were taken into account --
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic --
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] -- cropped up.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: -- don't waste time. If you don't wish to
17 formulate the question, I will instruct you to move to another matter.
18 It's as simple as that.
19 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Mrs. Mahon, for you in 1998, did you have information to the
21 effect that the bombing was being prepared?
22 A. Just the statement by James Rubin. The increased -- I would --
23 the Judge will tell me if I'm wrong or not on this one, but I would say
24 some of the exaggerated claims that were being made by the KLA and that
25 were being accepted. I think there was a huge propaganda war that went on
1 throughout the whole of the civil war and after in the Balkans, and really
2 you had to extract from reams of information what you thought was right
3 and what might happen. And I did actually accept that when somebody as
4 close to Madeleine Albright as James Rubin was, I did accept that when he
5 said that contingency plans - I think were the exact words he said, I have
6 it here somewhere - were being drawn up, I did take that very seriously,
7 which is why we asked -- Jeremy Corbyn, Tam Dalyell, and myself asked to
8 see somebody from the Yugoslav embassy, and we saw Mr. Pejic and we
9 relayed to him our concerns. That was before my party conference in -- at
10 the end of September.
11 Q. At the end of September 1998, that is; right?
12 A. Yes, 1998, yes.
13 Q. A moment ago you mentioned propaganda in the West. What do you
14 know about that propaganda? What are your assessments of that propaganda?
15 A. I -- on a -- in 1992, this is -- this is the first real alert I
16 got. Before that -- no, I'll go back. I'll go back a step. After the
17 ethnic cleansing of the Serbs from the Krajina, the first ethnic cleansing
18 in the Danubian area, we tried to get that published, as much publicity
19 for it as we could, and we got very little. And I have to say many people
20 better than I and more articulate than I wrote articles and articulated
21 what was going on, but it was almost as if collectively the press did not
22 want to know because Serbs were being ethnically cleansed. And it was one
23 of the biggest ethnic cleansing of the war, as it happens.
24 But in 1992, I went to the United Nations in New York with a
25 parliamentary delegation, and I was struck by the effectiveness of
1 Mr. Sacirbey, who was the Bosnian Muslim lobbyist in the UN. He was
2 incredible. He turned up everywhere, and his message was that the
3 international community must intervene and bomb -- bomb the Serbs. And it
4 struck me at that time how little PR was coming out from both the Serb
5 side and, I have to say, from the Croats as well. But this man was almost
6 on every stage whilst we were there. It's -- it's a coincidence we were
7 there when the Islamists tried to blow up the first twin towers and we had
8 to come back by another airline because ours was based there.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Ms. Mahon.
10 Mr. Milosevic, may I inquire, how much longer will you be with
11 this witness in your examination?
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I'll try and get through the
13 examination-in-chief as quickly as possible, but I do think I will need
14 one more session. And that means by about the beginning of the last
15 session. Fifteen minutes, give or take.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: If the Chamber were minded to grant the
17 application by Mr. Kay, obviously it would be most convenient to have
18 concluded this witness's testimony by the end of the day. Proceed.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I understand what you've just said,
20 Mr. Robinson. However, with respect to the testimony of this particular
21 witness, I should like to emphasise just how relevant it is in view of
22 everything that went on and everything she knows about the attack on
23 Yugoslavia. If a country was preparing and if the NATO countries were
24 preparing to attack Yugoslavia for a long period of time, then the
25 question arises how can the thesis still stand of some kind of criminal
1 enterprise on the part of Yugoslavia? And that's the main thesis put
2 forward by the opposite side over there here.
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Please proceed.
4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. To go back to Kosovo, did you have any information, Mrs. Mahon, or
6 any knowledge about where the members of the units of the KLA were coming
7 from, how they were trained and how they were being armed? Did you know
8 anything about that?
9 A. Earlier on before the -- before 1998, we had had Mr. Rugova and
10 other Albanian leaders to seminars of -- of NATO, and for two or three
11 years in the run-up to 1998 we talked to various leaders of the Albanian
12 groups but not leaders of the KLA, not on my committee. Mr. Rugova very
13 kindly attended twice, and we did question him, first of all about the
14 separate entity that had been set up in -- in Kosovo education-wise, et
15 cetera, and then about links with the KLA. It became quite clear that
16 Mr. Rugova, who was a renowned man of peace, quite clear that he didn't
17 view them very, very favourably, and of course later events showed us that
18 he tried to set up his own opposition to the -- to the KLA.
19 So in that sense, yes, we did talk about them on the committee.
20 And of course they were wanted on a terrorist list then. That, taking
21 them off the terrorist list, only came later when it was convenient for
22 the leaders of NATO to do so.
23 Q. Mrs. Mahon, do you remember the Rambouillet negotiations?
24 A. Very well, because we wanted to have a copy of the -- of the
25 document, those of us who were interested, on both sides of the argument,
1 those in favour of the war and those against, desperately wanted to see
2 the Rambouillet document. It wasn't placed, unfortunately, in the House
3 of Commons library until the 1st of April, and so we had to go on what
4 ministers had told us. We did have some meetings with ministers, and we
5 -- we just had to put up with that.
6 I thought, and I -- I concur with what Lord Gilbert said, who had
7 been a former defence minister, that the Rambouillet document -- I think I
8 have his actual quote here somewhere -- could never be accepted and that
9 it was wrong. I also note that the Foreign Affairs Select Committee, who
10 reported on the period the 1st of January, 1999, to the 2nd of March,
11 1999, among its conclusions were this: "At Rambouillet, negotiations were
12 doomed by the introduction of a demand that no government could ever agree
13 to, that a foreign army be given the right to occupy the whole territory
14 of the federal republic. The military annex of the Rambouillet proposals
15 would never have been acceptable to the Yugoslav side since it was a
16 significant infringement of sovereignty."
17 And I couldn't agree more on that. I think -- I think that's
18 absolutely true. Dr. Kissinger also, I understand, was on record as
19 saying no country anywhere would accept a provocation like it. It was an
20 excuse to start the bombing. I agree with Dr. Kissinger. And we -- as we
21 know when the final agreement came after the bombing, the military annex
22 was dropped. So I think it was Madeleine Albright putting it in so that
23 the Yugoslav government could not accept it. No government would have
24 accepted that, handing over sovereignty to a foreign army. And so I felt
25 very strongly about that. I did raise the issue in parliament and so did
1 many, many other parliamentarians.
2 Q. And did you know the position of the Serb side at the negotiations
3 in Rambouillet?
4 A. Yes, I did. I received a copy from the embassy of their -- of
5 their position, and it almost mirrored in Hansard and the record as saying
6 -- let me see. Yes. If it's all right to quote the Hansard, which is the
7 official record of the British parliament. On the 25th of March, column
8 578, I said: "I want to refer to the -- in the debate peace process at
9 Rambouillet because my Right Honourable Friend -" that was the minister -
10 "said Belgrade was a stumbling-block because it refused to negotiate."
11 And I said: "I have a copy of the Serb contribution to the peace process
12 entitled The Basic Elements of Substantial Self-government in Kosovo."
13 And I also have a draft copy of the agreement that NATO tried to impose,
14 because we were leaked this. We didn't get it officially until the 1st of
15 April, but we got -- we got a leak. And there -- I said: "There is
16 little difference between the two documents. There are two sticking
17 points. First, an ambiguous passage in the NATO draft document could lead
18 to a referendum that would take Kosovo away from the Serbs. There is no
19 question that such a referendum could lead to separation and a separate
20 state. The second sticking point is the proposal to put NATO troops on
21 Serbian territory, and the Serbs will not go along with that. That was
22 confirmed when I met the deputy ambassador of Yugoslavia and other Serbs.
23 The Serbs said that they were presented with an ultimatum, not a
24 negotiating ploy, and I think that the Serbs' case should be put before
25 the House. And that's not to condone any of the atrocities that may have
1 been committed, but it's only fair that the House hears the Serb case.
2 How would we feel if events -" and I quote Northern Ireland again, I'm
3 sorry if that's getting a bit wearied. "How would we feel if events in
4 Northern Ireland escalated out of control and the rest of the world, some
5 of whom thought that we were not doing too well there, had issued an
6 ultimatum through a military alliance telling us to accept an agreement,
7 that if they didn't accept their terms, then we'd be bombed? We would be
8 outraged and in uproar and we've got to realise how the Serbs think about
9 their country. We must try and get away from the massive propaganda we
10 hear." And then I just went on to say that the Serbs have refused to
11 capitulate to our ultimatum, and as we know, the result is the bombing,
12 which I think is profoundly wrong." So I'm on the record, as many others
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic.
15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Well, precisely to carry on from where you left off. That
17 resulted in the bombing, as you said. Now, what, in your assessment, were
18 the consequences of the bombing?
19 A. Well, here again I'm on record a number of times saying that the
20 consequences of the bombing led to the mass exodus of the Albanian
21 population from the country. I -- I have a map of where the bombs went,
22 and I've been to some of these places since the bombing, and quite
23 frankly, I think the bombing resulted in many people evacuating, and I
24 would have done as well with my family. I would not have stayed there
25 night after night --
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Mahon, this is of interest to us. Do you
2 have any -- any empirical evidence to support your view?
3 THE WITNESS: Yes, I do. Twelve months after the bombing I went
4 into Yugoslavia with a colleague, Bob Marshall-Andrews, Q.C. Our reasons
5 for going was the real problems with refugees in Serbia. We wanted to go
6 into the camps and talk to people ourselves. And the minister for
7 refugees accommodated us. It was quite difficult, sanctions were on at
8 the time, some of the aid agencies had pulled out. And we went into a
9 camp outside Belgrade to talk to a number of people. There was family, an
10 Albanian family, in that camp who had been driven out by the KLA and did
11 not want to go back to Kosovo. I have had in my constituency a number of
12 Albanians who fled the bombing who came to settle in Halifax, and,
13 luckily, we've got the right to remain for one or two of them. One of the
14 women, who had had a nervous breakdown, and I did a lot of work for her as
15 a constituency MP, an Albanian woman, told me that the KLA had told them
16 to leave and to get on a train.
17 We also have the -- I think it was Jonathan Steel, in the
18 Guardian, on the 30th of June, 1999 --
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: You're speaking here about the KLA.
20 THE WITNESS: Yes.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: I think the question related to the bombing.
22 THE WITNESS: Yes. Well, the exodus of people, in my view, were
23 three things: I think the Serb paramilitaries did drive some people out.
24 I think the KLA definitely encouraged the exodus. And I went to the camps
25 - these camps were quite well provided for - I went there a couple of
1 times. And I also think people got out of the way of the bombing. So
2 that's my personal view of what happened.
3 And Jonathan Steel, in the Guardian, said a KLA fighter had
4 admitted that he'd instructed Albanians to leave Kosovo. And I think
5 that's been widely reported from other sources as well. I give three
6 examples, but -- that I personally had, but I think it's also been widely
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Ms. Mahon, just to be precise about these things, was the bombing
11 the main reason for the exodus or one of the reasons of the exodus on a
12 footing of equality with the other reasons, to the best of your knowledge?
13 A. Oh, I think --
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: And when you give your answer, you must provide a
15 basis for your conclusion.
16 THE WITNESS: I think the bombing was the main reason for the
17 exodus. I think people have said publicly and on the record that they got
18 out of the way of the bombing. I have to say, if we want an updated
19 example, when the military -- the US military in Iraq said they were going
20 to attack Fallujah, three-quarters of that city evacuated. The people
21 don't stay where they think they're going to get bombed. It's just my
23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. And the conduct and behaviour of the KLA? What causes for the
25 exodus -- what context could you place that in if you look at the exodus
1 and the fact that people were leaving?
2 A. Well, it's -- it -- it confirmed for them -- no, no. They got
3 what they wanted. They -- they got the world's press seeing this massive
4 exit of people, and they termed it ethnic cleansing, and so they were able
5 to -- and the press, of course, carried this widely, the refugees going
6 into -- and it was a miserable time for them as well, and they have all my
8 But I still maintain, and so many other people, that the -- that
9 the exodus of people, the ethnic cleansing, if you like, occurred after
10 the bombing started. I'm not the only one that said that. Very eminent
11 people have said that. I sincerely believe it. Unfortunately, the press
12 have ignored the permanent ethnic cleansing that's gone on before and
13 since. And as we know, there are nearly a million refugees, mainly in
14 Serbia, some in Montenegro. I visited them in the camps with
15 parliamentarians, and the world and the West don't seem to be bothered
16 about that ethnic cleansing. Wrong ethnic group, perhaps.
17 Q. You said that it might have been the wrong ethnic group to deal
18 with that, for them to deal with it.
19 A. If you want me to -- sorry. Yes, I think -- I think -- I think
20 the Serbs were demonised, and there was a deliberate propaganda campaign
21 that did demonise. I actually paid a visit to this Tribunal to visit the
22 Prosecutor with Mark Littman, Q.C., the gentleman who has done all the
23 legal documents for us on the legality of the war. And one of the reasons
24 for visiting Ms. Carla Del Ponte was I'd just returned from a visit to the
25 Krajina, from Knin and Serbia, where I had been talking to returnees,
1 Serbs who wanted to go back who had been driven out by the Croats and by
2 the bombing of the Western forces. And we took photographs of mass graves
3 outside Knin, and statements from a number of Serbs who were having a
4 terrible time. And it's reported, we had a debate in parliament about it.
5 It's been widely reported. And I asked the Chief Prosecutor -- I was
6 there with two or three; as I said, Mark Littman, Q.C., and a Serb who
7 lives in London who was part of the Committee for Peace in the Balkans,
8 and I asked if this would be investigated, this mass grave that we'd seen,
9 and we were told at the time that resources were limited. I didn't think
10 that was a satisfactory answer and still don't.
11 I also went to Banja Luka with the -- the parliamentary committee,
12 the Civilian Affairs Committee, where we were briefed by a policeman who
13 came from Preston, which is in the north of England, not far from where I
14 live, who told us, told the committee, and we questioned him on it and
15 this will be on the record, that they were only looking for Serbs when it
16 came to -- he was working for the Tribunal, but they were only looking for
17 Serbs. Well, I think there was a civil war. I think atrocities took part
18 on all sides.
19 And as Mr. Milosevic knows, I've been very critical of him, very
20 critical of Mr. Tudjman, and very critical of Izetbegovic. The reason
21 I've decided to come to the Tribunal is because when it came to keeping
22 Yugoslavia together and looking at all the leaders, I decided, and reading
23 all the Tribunal material - and since I stood down from parliament I've
24 had time to do that, and watch it - I have come to the conclusion that
25 Mr. Milosevic was the one who wanted to keep Yugoslavia together. But I
1 have been highly critical of all the leaders in the past because of what
2 happened, but I do think --
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.
4 THE WITNESS: -- Serbs have been demonised.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I ask you when these two meetings were; that's
6 the meeting with the Prosecutor and the meeting with the north of England
7 police officer.
8 THE WITNESS: The meeting with the Prosecutor will be on the
9 record, and I came with Mark Littman. I think it was 2003. I can
10 certainly get you the -- it will --
11 JUDGE BONOMY: 2003 is good enough.
12 THE WITNESS: I think it was, yes.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: And the later one?
14 THE WITNESS: The one with the police officer in Banja Luka I
15 think was 2001, yeah. But it will be on the NATO website. It was an
16 official visit.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: You said you have been critical of Mr. Milosevic.
18 THE WITNESS: Yes I have, yes.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Can you tell us what --
20 THE WITNESS: Well, I think the propaganda machine should not be
21 underestimated, because it affected us all, and we all believed things of
22 all sides, and I've said, I think on the record, that I hold no truck with
23 Mr. Milosevic. That I'd been to Vukovar, I think was one quote I made,
24 and seen what the Serbs did there. So I was laying blame.
25 And I also said about Mr. Izetbegovic that he knew about what was
1 happening to the rural Serbs in Bosnia who were being persecuted and
2 killed, and I think I said to some rather unpleasant things about him as
3 well. And similarly about Mr. Tudjman, who -- they're not here now to
4 defend themselves.
5 But the conclusion I reached after this last three or four years
6 of reading and listening and what -- this Tribunal helped me to come to
7 this decision, is that Mr. Milosevic was the only one trying to keep
8 Yugoslavia together.
9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Just to go back to a few questions related to Kosovo. Did you
11 have any information to the effect that the Serbs were leaving Kosovo
12 during the NATO bombing?
13 A. Oh, yes. Yes. We -- shortly after -- well, first of all during
14 the bombing, the NATO parliamentary Assembly met in Warsaw, and I moved
15 nearly 50 amendments to the resolution that was congratulating NATO, and I
16 got some very, very limited support, I must confess. But during that
17 meeting, that Assembly, we were told by speakers - because we invite
18 speakers - that everybody was getting out of the way of the bombing, that
19 they had refugees going into Serbia as well.
20 I also, at a later seminar in Macedonia, at Lake Ohrid, we had
21 Michael Ignatieff, the journalist, and Noel Malcolm, who wrote the book,
22 or the books on Kosovo, and it sticks in my mind what Michael Ignatieff
23 said, but this was when the bombing ceased. He says, "I didn't think I'd
24 gone along with this military action." He'd just been to Kosovo. It had
25 only just finished, the bombing. "So that I could see thousands of Serbs
1 on tractors, walking, and in cars, being driven out of Kosovo. We stopped
2 one --" because he believed the ethnic cleansing was going on on a huge
3 scale. I didn't. But he said, "We've stopped one lot of ethnic cleansing
4 and we're now witnessing another." The difference I would put is that
5 one's been permanent and the other one wasn't.
6 Q. Ms. Mahon, since you follow the events in Kosovo very intensively,
7 you visited there, you visited Yugoslavia, you were in debates in
8 parliament, you were in the NATO committee, the parliamentary Assembly and
9 your parliament's committees dealing with these things and everything
10 else, I'm just going to ask you a few questions now with respect to this
11 indictment, and I'd like you to tell me whether you had any knowledge
12 about any of this from all your experiences, which are undoubtedly very
13 broad indeed and rich experiences.
14 Paragraph 53 says that I, together with others, it doesn't matter
15 who else, it says: "... planned, instigated [In English] ordered,
16 committed or otherwise aided and abetted in a deliberate and widespread or
17 systematic campaign of terror and violence directed at Kosovo Albanian
18 civilians living in Kosovo in the FRY."
19 A. The question is do I have any knowledge or experience --
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm not allowing that, Mr. Milosevic. She is in
21 no position to comment on that on the basis of the evidence that she has
22 given so far.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, she isn't in a position to
24 comment what they wrote, but she does have the knowledge which can perhaps
25 deny it because she was in contact with people there. So I can ask her
1 the following:
2 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Do you have any information and knowledge which refute these kind
4 of allegations, madam?
5 THE WITNESS: Okay?
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Do you have any specific knowledge?
7 THE WITNESS: Well, when we've been having the meetings of the
8 Committee for Peace in the Balkans, people came along and gave testimonies
9 to how they were treated, and we had some very, very lively meetings, as
10 you can imagine. There was -- during the civil war in particular. But in
11 the run-up to Kosovo as well. And one person would come on, an Albanian,
12 because there's a sizable community in London. I'm very pleased to say
13 they carried on coming to the committee meetings. And one person would
14 say something and then we'd get a Serb who would stand up and say, "You
15 killed my brother who was a policeman," or my cousin. And so from that
16 point of view we had the people viewing their differences, airing their
18 Similarly on the NATO Assembly, we would get one report supporting
19 -- because we have observers there from the various countries, and we'd
20 get report from -- reports from various groups saying this happened, that
21 happened. There would be a difference of opinion.
22 What -- what I will say, and I think the British delegation were
23 innocent, quite sympathetic to this, was we did know there was a guerrilla
24 organisation operating in Kosovo. We did know that -- because Robin Cook
25 told us and we all got the [inaudible], that they were violating the --
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Mahon, I'm going to stop you.
2 THE WITNESS: Okay, that's fine.
3 JUDGE ROBINSON: It's clear to me you don't have any specific --
4 THE WITNESS: No.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: -- knowledge of these matters.
6 Mr. Milosevic.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.
8 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Ms. Mahon, did you have any information about what the Yugoslav
10 organs did, the Yugoslav authorities, including the Yugoslav army and the
11 Yugoslav security organs? Do you have any information as to how they
12 treated refugees?
13 A. Mainly reports from the press. We did have some reports in
14 parliament from the Defence Minister who talked about 10.000 -- first of
15 all, a hundred thousand people being killed. Then it came down to 10.000.
16 This was during the bombing, and it was about justifying the bombing. And
17 the accusations were that the Yugoslav army had carried out these
18 killings. Consequent -- subsequently we know this is not true and the
19 deaths, desperately tragic as they were, and injuries, were nothing like
20 on the scale that both Robin Cook and George Robertson were telling us.
21 Q. All right. You were in Kosovo later, that is to say after the
22 war. Could you establish what the situation was like in Kosovo after the
23 war? What is your knowledge about that? Did NATO attacks resolve the
24 problems of Kosovo, help people there? Did they create anything
25 noteworthy? So what are your observations --
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Not relevant. Don't answer that.
2 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Have you heard of at least a single action where NATO forces in
4 Kosovo, after taking over responsibility for protecting the entire
5 population, tried to protect the Serbs, or an Orthodox church, or have you
6 heard of any situation when --
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, don't answer that.
8 No, Mr. Milosevic. Don't abuse the Court's process and time. If
9 you don't have any more questions to ask, then I'll ask Mr. Nice to begin
10 his cross-examination.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I do have other questions.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, then put questions that are relevant to the
14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. As for the violence against the Serb population, do you know
16 whether that was brought to an end after the bombing stopped?
17 A. Certainly not. And we -- we -- after the 2004 --
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: That's outside the indictment period. If you ask
19 one more question like that, I'm going to terminate the
20 examination-in-chief. This is the third question you've asked, and it
21 relates to the period outside the indictment.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well. Then I don't want to be
23 brought into that situation, that is to say not to be able to put some
24 questions that I also believe are very important as far as this witness is
1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Ms. Mahon, in addition to Kosovo, you went to Bosnia-Herzegovina
3 and Croatia; is that right?
4 A. Yes. I went to Croatia on a -- two or three occasions, mainly to
5 talk to returnees, and to talk to the -- the Croats who were trying to be
6 helpful, one particular party, about the refugees. I went and saw what
7 happened, the results of Operation Storm, which were quite shocking. And
8 the refugees have been a major concern of the women's committee that I've
9 told you about. We've been trying to get people together, and we've been
10 trying to help to get people to be able to return to their homes.
11 When I was in the Krajina, I actually did a report that went to
12 the OSCE about the plight of the Serbs who had returned and the fact that
13 they were not getting any help from the government. The OSCE on that
14 occasion were very good and did take up the number of cases that we gave
15 them. And I visited recently with John Randall, Conservative MP for
16 Uxbridge, who chairs the Serbian-Montenegrin group in parliament, and the
17 Macedonian group. He was the secretary, I was the chair, and we went to
18 visit Kosovo refugees who were -- had been stuck in camps near the Kosovo
19 border in Serbia for many years. And we complained about that because the
20 administrator in Kosovo was not -- less than 1 per cent had gone back.
21 And the administrator was allowing Albanian families who lived near the
22 right to veto returnees, and so we made some complaints about that. And I
23 understand the position is slightly better now and more refugees are going
25 But they were in a desperate case, and it did seem to me that the
1 rest of Europe had just turned their back on them. And as we know, there
2 are nearly a million people who have been ethnically cleansed from all
3 over the former Soviet Union, and most of them are in Serbia and in
4 Montenegro, and it's an absolute disgrace, in my view.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Did you mean to say the Soviet Union there?
6 THE WITNESS: No. I said it's an absolute disgrace, in my view.
7 No, I meant to say Yugoslavia, the former Yugoslavia, sorry. I thought I
8 said Yugoslavia.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: You actually said Soviet Union and it just seemed
10 very strange in the circumstances.
11 THE WITNESS: Yes. Sorry about that.
12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. The time that you refer to when you went to Croatia, is that when
14 you came here to have the talks that you refer to?
15 A. I came here afterwards, after one of the visits, yes, but I've
16 been two or three times.
17 Q. After one of these visits. All right. How many times did you
18 visit Croatia?
19 A. Three times altogether, once with the women's international and
20 twice with NATO.
21 Q. In the briefest possible terms, what was your impression after
22 these visits to Croatia?
23 A. The visit to --
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic --
25 THE WITNESS: -- with --
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: -- you must be a little more specific and get the
2 witness to focus on something relevant. That's an invitation for the
3 witness to give a very long and general answer. What is the precise piece
4 of evidence that you're seeking to elicit from her?
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Specifically I wish to hear in the
6 briefest possible terms, and that is what I emphasised, what Ms. Mahon's
7 impressions were of her visit of Croatia. In view of what she saw there,
8 in view of the talks she had there, what did she establish? What did she
10 THE WITNESS: We --
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Ms. Mahon.
12 THE WITNESS: As -- as a member of the NATO delegation, we did
13 place great emphasis on getting people to return, the returnees, because
14 in Bosnia a lot of work has been done to get people back to their homes.
15 It seems to me that the big area of neglect is the Krajina, where the
16 biggest ethnic cleansing took place, and very few have returned. I think
17 it is getting better now, but I really do think it should be a priority
18 for the West to get these people back, because the conditions they're
19 living in - and children are being born in these camps in the heart of
20 Europe - and so I always came back feeling very, very saddened. But we
21 did emphasise to the -- to the Croats that we thought they had a duty to
22 cooperate with the West and get these refugees back. Unfortunately, not
23 as much pressure has been placed on the Croatian government as has been
24 placed on the Serbian government, and I think politically that's just
1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Ms. Mahon, you mentioned that you went to Bosnia-Herzegovina.
3 When was it that you went to Bosnia-Herzegovina, and on what occasion, and
4 who did you meet?
5 A. I went on two or three occasions. The first time was during the
6 civil war when I went with -- I've already mentioned that to the Tribunal,
7 when I went with women's committee. I went with NATO, I think in 2000;
8 and I went in 1999 with the -- no. I went with NATO in 2000, then I think
9 I went again in 2004. I have the exact dates somewhere. I can give you
11 Q. What did you establish then?
12 A. Well, when we went with NATO, we were very anxious to resolve the
13 question of returnees and get the refugees back in their own homes. We
14 were also interested in some of the reforms that the Croatian government
15 were introducing. They were obviously --
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, none of this is really helpful to
17 the case.
18 THE WITNESS: Okay.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well. Then just a few more
20 questions that have to do with Kosovo.
21 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. In view of the position you had and in view of the questions that
23 you were interested in, did you establish whether the KLA continued to be
24 active even after the war, and with what consequences?
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, Mr. Milosevic. That question is not to be
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] You don't want to hear an answer?
3 All right, Mr. Robinson.
4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Ms. Mahon, were you ever in possession of some facts or
6 information that have to do with the links between the KLA and drug
7 trafficking, white slave trading, and similar crimes over a longer period
8 of time?
9 A. Yes.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: What period of time?
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In the period of time during the
12 war, before the war, after the war. The involvement of the KLA with drug
13 smuggling, white slave trading, and all other types of criminal activity.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: How does that affect any of the issues in the
15 indictment, assuming that that was established?
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Oh, it does affect it, and how.
17 Ms. Mahon explained in one of her answers that everybody treated the KLA
18 as a terrorist organisation. But it's not only a terrorist organisation,
19 it's also an organisation through which most of the drugs going to Europe
20 go. This is an organisation that is involved in white slave trading too.
21 This is a monster organisation that became an ally of --
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, that's your last question.
23 Mr. Nice, please.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Why can she not answer that if she
25 knows about it, Mr. Robinson?
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: It's not relevant.
2 Cross-examination by Mr. Nice:
3 Q. Ms. Mahon I'm not going to, of course, as I've indicated,
4 challenge the sincerity of your views in any way, and I'll probably be
5 very brief.
6 Dealing with one of the -- I have to deal with this in order not
7 to disturb the sound system. Right.
8 Just to start with, remember the answer you gave about Racak?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Your help, please, so that we can understand your -- the general
11 process by which you give answers. So far as Racak is concerned, is it
12 your evidence to this Court that Ambassador Walker actually set up the
13 whole incident, set up the conflict in Racak so that there was fighting
14 and deaths?
15 A. There was huge discussion about Racak across the whole of the
16 European Community. My committee, the Committee for Peace in the Balkans,
17 had speakers who had gone into great detail. There was a German
18 television crew that reported that there'd been a firefight in the area --
19 French or German, I've forgotten now --
20 Q. Forgive my interrupting, I'd like to come back to the detail in a
21 second, but a question I hope was capable of an easier answer: Is it your
22 evidence that Ambassador Walker set up the whole incident, set up that
23 conflict in Racak so there was fighting and deaths? And the reason I ask
24 you that is because, as you will recall, your initial answer was Walker
25 had arranged an incident. So --
1 A. Well, that was the view of many of the people. So --
2 Q. Right.
3 A. -- could I rephrase that, then. That was the view of many of the
4 people who came along to the Committee for Peace in the Balkans to talk
5 about Racak, to talk about the television which we saw -- we saw the
6 television documentary with an interpreter -- and that was, I would have
7 said, the overwhelming opinion of the people who came to talk to us.
8 Q. That's fine, that's your opinion. Now, can you point us, please,
9 to not all of the evidence but the best piece of evidence that shows that
10 Mr. Walker actually set up the whole event.
11 A. No. I can point you to the film and to various commentators.
12 Q. And the film, is that the film where they show Mr. Walker walking
13 up the ravine and finding the bodies?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Right.
16 A. And they also show the angle of the bullets and the fact that --
17 there were all kinds of forensic disputes about it. As you know, there
18 was a big debate went on about it.
19 Q. Before we move from this, can you tell us, please, how it is from
20 that film -- because we've seen that film several times. Can you tell us,
21 please, how it is from that film that it's possible to deduce or infer
22 that Mr. Walker actually set the whole thing up --
23 A. Well, people did deduce that.
24 Q. No, can you tell us -- because we've seen the film, and therefore,
25 if it's a deduction we can make, we'd like to know how to make it. Can
1 you tell us, please, how to make that deduction from that film.
2 A. No. I -- I can't. I can tell you, Mr. Nice, that my experience
3 in the past of Mr. Walker as a diplomat in a very difficult area was
4 appalling, and so I suppose I start with an in-built prejudice about
5 Mr. Walker's partiality in this case.
6 Q. Yes. Now that's your view, that he set the whole thing up.
7 A. Well, I think I withdrew that he set the whole thing up, so if you
8 can just stop repeating. I think I actually withdrew and said that people
9 came along to the committee and told us.
10 Q. All right. But, you see, one alternative view of Racak might be
11 not that Mr. Walker set the whole thing up but that, an event having
12 occurred, he was a bit swift off the mark to attribute blame. Now that's
13 -- that's a different, much softer view of Mr. Walker.
14 A. Certainly is, yes.
15 Q. But that's not your conclusion, I take it.
16 A. I'm somewhere in the middle, I think, Mr. Nice, on that one.
17 Q. You say you followed the evidence in this court. Have you in fact
18 followed in order to be able to review for us the evidence on Racak?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Thank you. And you would accept, wouldn't you, that as against
21 your distillation of opinions of others, the judgement of Judges dealing
22 with the raw evidence is the preferable route to the truth?
23 A. Well, I think that's up to the Court to decide. They've looked at
24 the evidence and the Court will decide its own view on this. I don't
25 think, as a politician, I always necessarily -- or as a player with NATO,
1 et cetera, always necessarily have to agree with everything that a court
2 might decide.
3 Q. Now, I want you to deal with another little matter of detail, and
4 it's about this policeman from your neck of the woods called -- you've
5 described him as Ken Collet --
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. -- but in fact -- and indeed you named him as Ken Collet in the
8 House of Commons.
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. In fact, I'm sure you accept this: His name is actually Ken
11 Corlett, C-o-r-l-e-t-t.
12 A. That's okay. I had his card at the time, so I'm sorry I misspelt
14 Q. And it was -- was it in the Banja Luka -- Banja Luka metal factory
15 that you met him, with other politicians?
16 A. Uh-huh. I'm not sure about metal factory. I know we met in a
18 Q. Right.
19 A. I wouldn't swear it was in a metal factory.
20 Q. This of course is in Republika Srpska, isn't it?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. I beg your pardon?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And how long was Mr. Corlett's presentation to you?
25 A. I think we were there about an hour, maybe longer.
1 Q. You see, we've approached him this morning, knowing that you were
2 coming and finding this passage in the parliamentary records of what you'd
3 said. He no longer works here, he works elsewhere, but he's been able to
4 reply with an explanation and I want to put his explanation to you to see
5 if you accept it. Starting at your end, that is, the only people they
6 were looking for were Serbs, the area in which you were and he was working
7 at that time was populated by what ethnic group?
8 A. Serbs.
9 Q. And there were no Croats or Muslims living there.
10 A. I must dispute that because some of the staff who were showing us
11 round were Muslims.
12 Q. Uh-huh. But the people living in the area --
13 A. They were living there. They were not -- not in a camp, they were
14 living there.
15 Q. But generally speaking, Serbs living in Republika Srpska.
16 A. Yeah, yeah.
17 Q. And it may well be that Mr. Corlett explained to you that in the
18 area where he was the search for potential war criminals was of Serb war
19 criminals because that's where they were likely to be found. Now,
20 thinking back, did he explain that to you?
21 A. No, he did not. We asked about the search for war criminals and
22 he said, "I'm only looking for Serbs." He did not explain that to us.
23 Q. You see --
24 A. And one or two of us questioned him on it.
25 Q. I beg your pardon?
1 A. One or two of us questioned him on it. We asked questions and
2 said but other people committed crimes, other ethnic groups committed
3 crimes. He said, "My instruction is to look for Serbs."
4 Q. Was this in the context of executing -- or beginning the process
5 of executing warrants of arrests for people named as possible
7 A. Well, you must ask him that.
8 Q. Well, I'm asking you --
9 A. I'm pretty sure he'll give you an answer. I'm sure he had a list
10 of people. He was very confident when he replied to us. Now, I checked
11 this with a colleague who was with us on that --
12 Q. You see --
13 A. -- just a few months ago, and his knowledge was exactly the same
14 as mine.
15 Q. Part of Mr. Corlett's presentation to you was on the work of the
16 ICTY generally.
17 A. That's right, yes, yes.
18 Q. And in that part of his presentation he made it plain to you that
19 the purpose of the ICTY was to investigate crimes regardless of ethnicity.
20 A. No. He actually said he was only looking for Serbs.
21 Q. Well, I respectfully suggest, madam, that you're wrong.
22 A. I'm sorry if you think that, Mr. Nice, but I'm telling you I was
23 there. I would not have repeated that in the House, and I take copious
24 notes about things, and --
25 Q. Are you got them with you now?
1 A. I'm sure I can get it to you because I don't throw anything away.
2 Q. Because you're reading from notes today and I wondered if you have
3 the note of this conversation.
4 A. No, but I will have a look for it, Mr. Nice.
5 Q. So we can put it to Mr. Corlett and get his further comment.
6 A. I think the important point is I was there, Mr. Nice, and you were
8 Q. I want you to think a little more carefully about whether your
9 understandable and sincerely held bias in certain directions may have
10 affected your overall memory of, and indeed maybe your record of, what
11 Mr. Corlett told you about the function of the ICTY and you focussed
12 simply on the bit where he said, well, here we're trying to get Serb
14 A. If you don't mind me saying, I think that's rather insulting and I
15 think I'll just wish you'd not said that.
16 Q. You've explained about the OSCE being infiltrated by the CIA,
17 haven't you?
18 A. I said I thought they had a huge influence in them, and I
19 certainly think they have, yes.
20 Q. I think you used the word "infiltration."
21 A. Well, infiltrate, okay.
22 Q. If I was wrong about that --
23 A. It's okay.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, my recollection is that the question was had
25 the KLA been infiltrated by the CIA, but I don't think that was the
2 THE WITNESS: Not the KLA, the OSCE.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm sorry.
4 MR. NICE:
5 Q. Well, you say that the CIA had an influence over the OSCE. I'm
6 not necessarily challenging it, I would like you, however, to help us
7 with, again, the best bit of evidence, the best fact you can point us to
8 to support that proposition.
9 A. And you want this specifically to Kosovo.
10 Q. Yes.
11 A. Specifically to Kosovo.
12 Q. Yes.
13 A. Talking to people who were on the ground, just generally talking
14 to soldiers afterwards, chatting to people who worked in an NGO capacity
15 in Kosovo, and talking to people in Kosovo themselves who lived there. So
16 it was a general view I got about Kosovo. I could be more specific if I
17 was talking about the elections that I monitored with the OSCE but you're
18 not interested in that in court.
19 Q. Now, chatting to people generally --
20 A. Uh-huh.
21 Q. -- doesn't give us very much to work on.
22 A. No, no.
23 Q. But --
24 A. I was talking generally when I said there was a general view held
25 that the Americans have huge sway over what the OSCE does.
1 Q. I'd like you to please look at with me just a couple of pages of
2 an exhibit, and while we come to it, it's -- it's page 6, I think, of the
3 first of the "As Seen, As Told" books. Presumably you're acquainted with
4 the "As Seen, As Told" books, are you?
5 A. Yes. I don't have a copy.
6 Q. We're just getting you a copy. Are you aware that there are two
7 volumes of this work?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. I'm sorry?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And that the first volume deals with events up until June and the
12 second volume deals with events after?
13 A. Yeah.
14 Q. So if we look at page 6 - and perhaps Mr. Nort might display it on
15 the overhead projector for us, and if the booth would be so good. I'm not
16 going to deal with much of this book. In fact, only one entry, I think,
17 at the moment probably. If we look at page 6 on the left-hand side.
18 That's fine.
19 We see a paragraph that's headed with "Limited international
20 sanctions," and further down the page, it says: "Substantial additional
21 Serbian military reinforcements were sent into Kosovo in May --"
22 A. Where is this? Where is this?
23 Q. -- in 1998."
24 A. Sorry, I've lost --
25 Q. It's just on the left-hand side there, halfway down the screen.
1 A. Yes, yes, yes, yes.
2 Q. "Ignoring a final warning from European governments in June, Serb
3 forces began concentrating their actions in the Drenica area and along the
4 south-western border, using artillery to force villagers out of their
5 homes and then going in to loot and burn them. Aid agencies estimated
6 that some 2 to 300.000 Albanians were driven from their homes between
7 April and September of 1998."
8 Now, do you have any reason to doubt the accuracy of that as just
9 part of the pre-1999 story?
10 A. I do know that that figure has been widely disputed, both at the
11 time and since, that there were so many. At the same time, there was a
12 very notorious claim that there were rape camps being set up as well which
13 later proved not to be the case, so --
14 Q. We're looking at what's in this book.
15 A. Yeah. I know we're looking at what's in this book, and it says
16 "aid agencies estimated," but that figure has been disputed. I am not
17 doubting that some of this went on, Mr. Nice.
18 Q. Yes.
19 A. I do not doubt that, I've been very open, and you'll know that if
20 you've read the stuff I've said.
21 Q. Can you help me with this from your knowledge: Accepting then
22 that there was a very large number or a large number, whatever we like --
23 A. Yeah.
24 Q. -- of Kosovo Albanians displaced from their homes by Serb forces
25 in the middle of 1998, from your wide knowledge can you tell us, please,
1 what efforts the government made to re-house them?
2 A. I have no idea. I do know that some villages were burnt -- I know
3 that some Serb villages were burnt out. I think the rebuilding
4 programme's gone on since --
5 Q. Yes?
6 A. -- an in some places good and in some places not good.
7 Q. You see --
8 A. Why would I have any idea about that, Mr. Nice?
9 Q. Ms. Mahon, you come here with very wide knowledge, it's said, and
10 you've been allowed by the Court to give very wide and sometimes general
11 answers, and you've given your conclusions from answers, and I'd just like
12 you to help us one more time because of your extensive knowledge. Is
13 there any reason that you know to believe that the Serb government made
14 any effort at all --
15 A. I don't.
16 Q. -- to re-house the Kosovo Albanians kicked out of their homes in
17 the middle of --
18 A. I have no idea whether they did or didn't.
19 Q. Very well.
20 A. We had seminars about this on the NATO parliamentary Assembly, we
21 got reports from all sides. Some people said one thing, some said
22 another. And I have never denied that some of these things took place, as
23 you well know if you've read my contributions in the House of Commons.
24 Q. And we've, of course, heard for this period Lord -- from Lord
25 Ashdown, of tanks firing into houses. You have no reason to doubt the
1 accuracy of evidence like that --
2 A. I --
3 Q. -- do you?
4 A. I've read all of Lord Ashdown's commentary. Lord Ashdown came to
5 NATO and briefed us, right up to the time I left. Some of it people
6 argued with him about, others didn't. Others were accepted. So this is,
7 you know, a statement from somebody. I make statements, he makes
9 Q. The first exhibit we were looking at was Exhibit 106 -- 10 --
10 sorry, 106. Can we now just look very briefly at the second part of 106,
11 which is the second part of the account, and at VI -- no, perhaps III to
12 begin with. Lay that on the overhead projector. Because -- have you
13 looked at and used this become very much yourself, Ms. Mahon?
14 A. Oh, yes.
15 Q. Good.
16 A. In the past, yes; not recently.
17 Q. And you have no reason to doubt its methodology, do you?
18 A. I don't think I'm on record as doubting its methodology.
19 Q. I know you identify on the record but you must feel free to add to
20 what's on the parliamentary record because here we're looking at things
21 afresh. Now, if you go to III.
22 Mr. Nort, if you'd like to help me, that's III at the bottom, as
23 it were. That's it, that page there. That's fine.
24 Now, just that bottom paragraph. This is the way the book dealing
25 with the suffering of others summarises some events. It says, right at
1 the bottom there: "In many of the cases documented by the OSCE in this
2 report, there are serious indications that the perpetrators of human
3 rights violations are either members of the former UCK, people passing
4 themselves off as members of the former UCK, or members of other armed
5 Albanian groups. In other cases, the alleged perpetrators are members of
6 Serb armed groups. In many cases it has been so far impossible to operate
7 -- to identify exactly those responsible. Whatever their identity, these
8 armed groups seem to operate in an organised fashion and have some form of
9 hierarchy, command and control."
10 Now, this is the period after June. From your knowledge and
11 experience - and I think you tell us you were on the territory some of
12 that time - does this seem to you about right?
13 A. What do you mean, the conclusions that the OSCE reach?
14 Q. In this paragraph.
15 A. In this particular paragraph. I have no way of knowing, have I,
16 Mr. Nice?
17 Q. Well, you've given very, very broad answers about bombs being the
18 most important thing for this, and who did that. You see, if we turn
19 over, Mr. Nort, a couple of pages to VII, you'll see that this is an
20 introduction signed by Dr. Kouchner, with whom you went on your mission.
21 Any reason to doubt his general integrity in --
22 A. No.
23 Q. Thank you. Staying on that same page, Mr. Nort, but now the
24 left-hand side, VI --
25 A. Mr. Kouchner was very helpful --
1 Q. Thank you.
2 A. -- to the committee.
3 Q. So if we look at the left-hand side, there we are, that's the
4 paragraph, and just to remind ourselves of how these books of research
5 material have been prepared, it says: "Things are changing. It is not
6 fair to make comparisons with the situation before or during the war. At
7 that time, and for at least a decade, there was a systematic policy of
8 apartheid, sub-human status, or at least a sub-community status for
9 Albanians in Kosovo. This is no longer the case today." But then this
10 sentence, which is why I refer you to: "Perhaps it may seem just as bad
11 today for the Serbs or Roma who live in fear, who cannot move about freely
12 or have to find a way to protect their children, but it is no longer a
13 matter of a policy. All the parties in Kosovo, all leaders ... have
14 stated their positions in favour of multi-ethnic society."
15 So here, you see, this is part of the Prosecution evidence, one of
16 the tools available to the Court, we see a reflection of the history but
17 then the present concern for Serbs and Romas. You'd agree with that,
18 would you, that Serbs and Romas might be living in fear?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: We will adjourn now for 20 minutes.
22 --- Recess taken at 12.21 p.m.
23 --- On resuming at 12.45 p.m.
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Nice.
25 MR. NICE:
1 Q. Ms. Mahon, you've told us how you followed these proceedings, and
2 you've told us how, in your view, the accused was the only one trying to
3 hold Yugoslavia together. Are you aware of evidence going to show that he
4 assented to the departure of both Slovenia and Croatia?
5 A. I think once it was a fait accompli, yes.
6 Q. Can you tell us what the evidence is? Do you actually know?
7 A. Sorry, I didn't hear you.
8 Q. Can you tell us what that evidence is, because I'd like to know
9 what you've factored into your conclusion that this accused was the only
10 one trying to keep Yugoslavia together.
11 A. I think -- I think when Slovenia seceded and the Yugoslav army
12 went in, and we went -- I went to Slovenia and talked to people about this
13 with the committee, the Yugoslav army were made to look the villains for
14 simply trying to hold together what was a legitimate country, Yugoslavia,
15 or a federation of states that made up a country. I saw the -- the video
16 - well, it's been widely shown - about when -- when the young conscripts
17 of the Yugoslav army were killed by the militia that formed themselves in
18 Slovenia. Only when the powerful -- in Croatia -- powerful West; i.e.,
19 the Germans, gave full recognition to these countries, I think did the
20 defendant then -- I don't have all the documents --
21 Q. You see --
22 A. -- but I certainly have an awful lot of --
23 Q. -- Ms. Mahon, when you make very broad assertions and you tell us
24 on the basis of what material you've relied, I just want to test what your
25 knowledge is. Are you aware, for example, of intercepts of telephone
1 calls between this accused and Karadzic before the separation of these
2 states, indicating his agreement to what would happen?
3 A. Karadzic, the Bosnian --
4 Q. Yes.
5 A. -- Serb?
6 Q. Yes.
7 A. I thought we were talking about Slovenia, sorry.
8 Q. Conversations, are you aware of those conversations between --
9 A. No, I'm not.
10 Q. No. Then I shan't trouble you further with that topic.
11 The Contact Group is something that you may be able to help us
12 with because, of course, it is an essentially political activity. And if
13 we can look at just a few of these from admitted exhibits and see if they
14 accord with your recollection of events. First of all, it will be 791,
15 tab 1.
16 What do you know about the Contact Group?
17 A. Can you -- can I see the --
18 Q. It's coming. The document's coming your way. What do you know
19 about the Contact Group that's important for us?
20 A. I think the -- the Contact Group are working, I think, to
21 conciliate and bring people together. They're an organisation that --
22 Q. Who was on it?
23 A. Pardon?
24 Q. Who was on it?
25 A. The Contact Group?
1 Q. Yes.
2 A. Now.
3 Q. At the time.
4 A. I'm not sure without looking.
5 Q. You see, if you look at the documents you've got there - maybe you
6 didn't know this, but just have a look at it - the document shows that the
7 foreign ministers of the Contact Group countries involved, France,
8 Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, United States, and the Russian Federation.
9 Did you -- did you know that?
10 A. Yes, I did.
11 Q. Ah. Well, now this one, you see, we start off for these purposes
12 in the 24th of September, 1997, and it's against your assertion that there
13 was really at some stage a falsity, a phoniness about the negotiations
14 because there was a plan to bomb or do whatever in any event. Here we see
15 the Contact Group, if you just look at the bottom of the page, and it's
16 September 1997, to help you: "Regarding the dispute over Kosovo's status,
17 the position of the Contact Group countries is clear: We do not support
18 independence and we do not support maintenance of the status quo. We
19 support an enhanced status for Kosovo within the FRY."
20 Do you remember that being the constructive approach of the
21 Contact Group at that time?
22 A. Mr. Nice, this is 1997. Yes, I do remember that was the view.
23 Q. Is there any --
24 A. But if I'm going to be questioned on documents going back to 1997,
25 do you think I could have a couple of minutes to have a look at them
2 Q. Of course.
3 A. I was on the Russian NATO group. I do have many colleagues in the
4 Russian delegation. And I think this view about Kosovo was probably
5 nearly everybody's view at that time.
6 Q. And there's no reason, is there, for us to think that there's
7 anything false or phoney about this expression of intent?
8 A. No.
9 Q. Right. Let's look at the next one, please, which is, in this
10 series 791, tab 8. We're just going to do a few of them because we don't
11 have so much time. And this one is the 8th of July of 1998. And again
12 Russia signs up to this, Russian Federation signs up.
13 And if we lay it on the overhead projector. Next page, please,
14 Mr. Nort. That's just the introduction. Thank you very much. Right.
15 "The Contact Group met in Bonn on 8 July." Took stock. Then we
16 took to paragraph 2: "The overall situation in Kosovo remains tense. The
17 Contact Group noted with deep concern that, despite vigorous efforts
18 undertaken by members of the Contact Group, the prospects of a peaceful
19 settlement have deteriorated since the Contact Group's meeting in London
20 on the 12th of June. Although the primary responsibility for the
21 situation in Kosovo rests with Belgrade, the Contact Group acknowledges
22 that armed Kosovo Albanian groups also have a responsibility to avoid
23 violence and all armed activities." It repeats that: "Violence is
24 inadmissible and will not solve the problem."
25 Now, I realise you're looking at this document maybe for the first
1 time, and it's only part of the document, of course, but is there any
2 reason to doubt that that's a broadly accurate statement of the political
3 position as of the middle of July -- middle of 1998?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Thank you very much. Now, at about this time, there was the
6 statement that you've referred to by Mr. Rubin, and I think we've managed
7 to track that down so we'll fit that in now, please, if we can. This
8 would be a new exhibit. August 3, 1998. Does that appear to be the right
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. We won't go through all of the report of his press conference but
12 just enough to check that we're on the right one. Briefer James Rubin, US
13 State Department. Does this appear at first sight to be the one you were
14 concerned about?
15 A. It was reported in the press, it's a press report I have.
16 Q. Right. If we go over, now, to the second page, Mr. -- I'll wait
17 until Mr. Nort comes back. We haven't got time to do all of it, but if we
18 go over to the second page, you'll see that Mr. Rubin is asked a question
19 in the middle of the page where -- he's asked a question that there will
20 be a mediator, essentially, or a new Prime Minister, various accounts,
21 that Minister Hajriozi doesn't care to live in Yugoslavia.
22 Then Mr. Rubin answers in the first paragraph, and in the next
23 paragraph he says: There are difficulties in working -- we'll have to
24 move it up the screen a bit, please, Mr. Nort. There are difficult --
25 next paragraph it is. Thank you very much.
1 "There are difficulties in working out these arrangements, but
2 that's what Ambassador Hill is doing right now. We believe that one of
3 the difficulties- and the primary difficulty - is a direct result of the
4 Serb offensive. It's very hard for the Albanian side to want to organise
5 itself in a negotiating context at the very time that the Serb side is
6 conducting these offensives that are displacing tens of thousands of
8 Now, that's -- may be a summary but it has to be. Over the page,
9 please, Mr. Nort, to help the witness and the accused and anybody else, we
10 can see at the top of the page a reference to humanitarian catastrophe,
11 but I'm not personally interested in that. I want to look at something
12 further down the page but I just draw that to the Court's attention if
13 they want to find it. Further down the page, please, Mr. Nort. That's
15 Mr. Rubin answers: "With respect to NATO, let me say this, and I
16 hope President Milosevic understands this: NATO has now approved a range
17 of contingency plans for the use of military force in this regard. The
18 Secretary-General has requested further refinement of those initially
19 approved plans that were approved in the recent days, and that effort is
20 continuing apace; and we would expect further -- we would expect that work
21 to further refine the options to be done very quickly."
22 And then the next paragraph -- first paragraph of the next
23 answer: "Question: NATO has approved a number of things they might be
24 willing to do militarily. Can you tell us - give us an idea of what the
25 range of things are?"
1 He says: "I don't care to get into the job of detailing military
2 planning - that is not for us here at the State Department. I think it's
3 important to note that a set of contingency plans has now been approved by
4 NATO, and that is an important development."
5 Now, is this the press conference that you were referring to?
6 A. I think it must be, but mine was a press report, not the actual
8 Q. So that it would appear, wouldn't it, that what Mr. Rubin was
9 publicly explaining was that there were contingency plans.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Now, as you understand, it's not for us, we're not concerned --
12 well, I just better check this. In the past you have accused certainly
13 the Prosecution part of this organisation of being creatures of NATO.
14 Now, is that something to which you still subscribe, or on reflection, was
15 that perhaps a --
16 A. No. No. It's something I do subscribe to.
17 Q. I see. In which case if I were to suggest to you that the
18 Prosecution here, or indeed the Court, is not concerned particularly with
19 the mechanism whereby things developed, we're not concerned with the
20 rights and wrongs of that, we're simply concerned whether crimes were
21 committed once things developed the way they did. Do you accept that
22 that's the position of this Prosecution?
23 A. I accept that the people concerning the Prosecution. I refer to
24 the court and the setting up of the court when I talk about it being
25 NATO's court.
1 Q. Very well. In those circumstances I go back to my -- contingency
2 plans in light of the assessments being made --
3 A. Where are we now?
4 Q. The document we've just looked at. In August, 1998, Contingency
5 plans in light of the circumstances as assessed at that time would be an
6 entirely appropriate thing for NATO to do, wouldn't it? It's not for me
7 to argue NATO's cause, and I don't, but nevertheless I put it to you as a
8 proposition for you to deal with. Make contingency plans, perfectly
10 A. Well, it does if you accept that NATO is acting legally doing any
11 of this, and I don't.
12 Q. Well, the legality or otherwise comes with the decision to move
13 later, but to make contingency plans, armies make contingency plans all
14 the time. There's nothing wrong, is there --
15 A. That goes against NATO's constitution, and it went against its own
16 rules when it made contingency plans --
17 Q. I see.
18 A. -- to bomb another country that had done it no harm.
19 Q. Even if a --
20 A. The constitution is very clear of NATO.
21 Q. Very well. If necessary, we'll get the constitution and confirm
22 that position, because Mr. Rubin made this observation publicly. Quite
24 MR. NICE: Your Honours, can this be produced? The witness seems
25 to be acknowledging it, although she says she saw it in a press conference
1 -- in a press report, I beg your pardon.
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, it's admitted.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit 969.
4 MR. NICE:
5 Q. Can we now go back to the documents from the Contact Group and
6 look at 791, tab 9. Again this comes from -- well, you can confirm from
7 your position within parliament that where a document comes with the
8 authority of six foreign ministers, included in the material available to
9 the document creators will be material available to governments and not
10 just to parliamentarians; would that be correct?
11 A. Uh-huh, yeah.
12 Q. Therefore, they will have access to intelligence that may not be
13 available at the time, or indeed ever, to parliamentarians and the
15 A. Yes. And I think given recent events we should be fairly careful
16 about taking that as 100 per cent certain. Intelligence by its nature can
17 be difficult.
18 Q. Ms. Mahon, I'm sure we all know exactly what you're referring to
19 and --
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. -- follow your argument, but nevertheless the point is they have
22 access to more materials. And this one, we see, on the 22nd of January:
23 "Members of the Contact Group met in London on the 22nd of January to
24 discuss the grave situation in Kosovo. It reaffirmed its united
25 commitment to achieve an early political solution to the present crisis,
1 and its determination to intensify its efforts to that end.
2 "Contact Group unreservedly condemns the massacre of Kosovo
3 Albanians in Racak on the 15th of January. All members expressed their
4 revulsion at this act of mass murder." And so on. They also condemn the
5 decision of the authorities to refuse entry to Kosovo by Judge Arbour.
6 Now, this was an assessment made at the time by all those six
7 governments. Any reason to doubt the bona fides - not the accuracy - the
8 bona fides of the opinion that was being expressed by this group?
9 A. No. They accepted this, and you know, I don't question their
10 integrity on accepting it. I say that I was quite -- listening to the
11 people who came to speak to us, presenting what they said was evidence, I
12 was quite skeptical about that particular -- and it could be, Mr. Nice,
13 it's because I have this view of Mr. Walker because of previous
14 activities. It could be that. You could be right.
15 Q. Well, let's look at the last one of this series, February -- which
16 is 791, tab 11. The last one was 791, tab 9. Let's look at 791, tab 11,
17 for the 23rd of February.
18 Paragraph 2: "Ministers noted the historic nature of the
19 Rambouillet conference, which launched a process on the basis of the
20 principles and basic elements adopted by the Contact Group in London on 29
21 January, bringing together those long divided by deep and bitter
23 "These have been complex and difficult negotiations, as we
24 expected. The important efforts of the parties and the unstinting
25 commitment of our negotiators ... Hill, Petritsch, and Mayorski, have led
1 to a consensus on substantial autonomy for Kosovo, including on mechanisms
2 for free and fair elections to democratic institutions, for the governance
3 of Kosovo, for the protection of human rights and the rights of members of
4 national communities ... establishment of a fair judicial system."
5 So that as of the 23rd of February, that's an expression of
6 intention. Any reason to doubt that this was a sincere expression of how
7 they were hoping --
8 A. No.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 A. No.
11 Q. And then if we look at paragraph 6 at the bottom, Mr. Nort.
12 Paragraph 6: "We pledge ourselves to work together to achieve a
13 settlement meeting the legitimate aspirations of all the people of Kosovo.
14 Only such a settlement can create the conditions in which a humanitarian
15 catastrophe can be avoided."
16 Now, that contains this assessment of humanitarian catastrophe.
17 There's no reason, is there, to doubt, even if it was an assessment that
18 you think's wrong, that it was genuine?
19 A. I don't agree with it.
20 Q. You don't agree with it?
21 A. I don't agree there was going to be a humanitarian catastrophe.
22 I've said on a number of occasions I thought the verification monitors
23 should have been doubled in number. I agree with what they said who spoke
24 to me on the ground, and that was just three weeks before the hostilities
25 started, the aggression started against Yugoslavia. So I mean, I don't
1 have to agree that humanitarian catastrophe was on the way, do I?
2 Q. In --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Nice, help me with the factual position here.
4 Is this after the failure of Rambouillet?
5 MR. NICE: I think it's in the break between --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: This is in the middle.
7 MR. NICE: Yes, I think so, between Rambouillet and Paris.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, okay.
9 MR. NICE:
10 Q. You see -- you -- you're familiar with the evidence in this court,
11 and one of those three ambassadors, Petritsch, has told us that there was
12 a change in the representation once we get to Paris. There was a change
13 because the constructive Ratko Markovic was replaced by Milan Milutinovic,
14 who appeared to be saying no to everything on the instructions of this
16 Now, have you reviewed that evidence of the Ambassador Petritsch?
17 A. I saw some of this, yes.
18 Q. Again, is there any reason known to you to doubt his assessment of
19 the change --
20 A. Well.
21 Q. -- of the change in negotiating position by Serbia at that time in
23 A. No. No. And neither is there any reason for me to accept his
25 Q. He was there, wasn't he?
1 A. Yes. I wasn't involved.
2 Q. You weren't involved.
3 A. No.
4 Q. And you --
5 A. But you doubted me earlier on, Mr. Nice, when you weren't there
6 and I was, so ...
7 Q. Just a couple of other things. One minute.
8 [Prosecution confer]
9 MR. NICE:
10 Q. I'm just going to give you an opportunity to look at one or two
11 other documents but before -- and I shall be very brief, but you were
12 never in -- you were in Macedonia three weeks before the bombing?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. But you weren't in a Macedonia camp or an Albanian camp or, I
15 think, a Montenegrin camp in the period March to June of 1999.
16 A. Yes. We went to a camp in Macedonia that was almost empty.
17 Q. Uh-huh.
18 A. And we talked to a number of people. Not surprisingly, the people
19 who were left were the people who had difficulty with transport, the
20 elderly, people who were disabled, one or two large families.
21 Q. What month was this?
22 A. That was -- well, they got people back very quickly after the
23 bombing stopped.
24 Q. This is after the bombing stopped?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. That's fine.
2 A. Yeah.
3 Q. I'm just interested in -- so you didn't interview any of the
4 people coming through the borders in the way that the various preparers of
5 reports --
6 A. No.
7 Q. -- "Under Orders" --
8 A. No, no, no.
9 Q. Incidentally, I should have checked, for completeness. Are you
10 familiar with this book, "Under Orders"?
11 A. No.
12 Q. No. It's a book prepared by Human Rights Watch. And it's another
13 book compiling the evidence of victims and eyewitnesses, and you haven't
14 seen it?
15 A. No, but we have had Human Rights Watch at the committee on a
16 number of occasion.
17 Q. Uh-huh.
18 A. Both before, during, and after --
19 Q. Thank you.
20 A. -- the bombing. So I might have seen it but I just don't recall.
21 Q. Can we just go back then to one document, 791.16, if we've got
22 that. I just want your comments on I think probably one other, possibly
23 two other documents of another source, to check whether you've got any
24 reason to advise us with your experience as a politician that we should
25 doubt these documents, you see.
1 This is a document which is -- the date's the 3rd of October,
2 1998. It's slightly cut off, but if you take my word for that, there it
3 is. It's a report of the Secretary-General pursuant to Resolution 1160,
4 and if we could turn over, Mr. Nort, to the next page where the
5 Secretary-General gives his report on the situation in Kosovo, and he says
6 as to hostilities this: "During the reporting period, fighting in Kosovo
7 continued unabated."
8 A. Where am I looking?
9 Q. Sorry, there we are.
10 A. Oh, yes.
11 Q. "Government security forces conducted themselves in the various
12 parts of Kosovo, including the areas of Likovac, Glogovac --"
13 A. I have seen this document--
14 Q. You have.
15 A. Yes. I think I have a copy of this document.
16 Q. In the week following the adoption the forces in fact intensified
17 their operations reportedly resulted in the displacement of 20.000
18 people. Smaller operations by the Serbian security forces in the Prizren
19 area. Fighting continued on the 28th and 29th of September, contrary to
20 the statement of the Serbian Prime Minister Marjanovic that
21 anti-insurgency operations had been completed.
22 Any reason we should be having in mind, with all your experience,
23 to doubt paragraph 5 of the Secretary-General's report prepared with all
24 the solemnity of such a report?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Thank you. And then in paragraph 6: "On the 29th of September,
2 federal minister for foreign affairs, Zivadin Jovanovic, assured me that
3 troops were returning to the place of their permanent location. According
4 to the most recent reports, military forces withdrew from Drenica and
5 Prizren areas on the 1st of October and observers indicated a decrease in
6 activities of the security forces. However, the secretariat is still
7 receiving information that the government's armed presence remains
8 significant, that the operations of the special police continue." Any
9 reason for us to doubt the accuracy of that, from what you know?
10 A. None whatsoever.
11 Q. Thank you. Page -- paragraph 7, and one more paragraph and I
12 shall be done this document, just for your opinion -- or your help,
13 rather. Because in paragraph 7 he reports: "I am particularly concerned
14 --" second sentence -- "that civilians increasingly have become the main
15 target of the conflict. Fighting in Kosovo has resulted in a mass
16 displacement of civilian populations, the extensive destruction of
17 villages and means of livelihood and the deep trauma and despair of
18 displaced populations. Many villages have been destroyed by shelling and
19 burning following operations conducted by federal and Serbian government
20 forces. There are concerns that the disproportionate use of force and
21 actions of the security forces are designed to terrorise and subjugate the
22 population, a collective punishment to teach them that the price of
23 supporting the Kosovo Albanian paramilitary units is too high ..."
24 Now, just pausing there a minute. This is quite a carefully
25 qualified statement. It says civilians are suffering. They're suffering
1 because, in a sense, they're supporting the KLA. Does that accord with
2 your understanding?
3 A. Well, yes. And we went through a similar experience, as you know,
4 Mr. Nice, in Northern Ireland.
5 Q. So it goes on: "The Serbian security forces have demanded the
6 surrender of weapons and have been reported to use terror and violence
7 against civilians to force people to flee their homes or the places where
8 they have sought refuge, under the guise of separating them from fighters
9 of the Kosovo Albanian paramilitary units. And the tactics include
10 shelling, detentions, threats to life, and finally, short-notice demands
11 to leave or face the consequences."
12 Now, this, you see, is in October 1998. May I take it that
13 there's no reason to doubt this?
14 A. No, I never have.
15 Q. Thank you. And you've of course been dealing with this material
16 for many years. So that -- well, Your Honours, I think the witness's
17 answers are going to be about the same. I would have looked at paragraph
18 16, if Mr. Nort can just turn us to that, a couple of pages on, deals with
19 the government claim that refugees have returned to their homes and has
20 pledged to facilitate the process, opening centres around Kosovo.
21 A. Yeah.
22 Q. You -- do you know -- I think you knew nothing of that because I
23 asked you about that before, didn't I?
24 A. What, about the rebuilding of the houses?
25 Q. Yes.
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Very well.
3 A. But I do have this document. I have read this document.
4 Q. Very well.
5 JUDGE KWON: Could I see the exhibit number on the front page.
6 MR. NICE: 795.16.
7 JUDGE KWON: Transcript said 791, so that's why I asked.
8 MR. NICE:
9 Q. Perhaps we can, I think usefully just look at one other document
10 for your comment, of the same series, which is 795, point -- tab 22. And
11 then I think probably I've got nothing further to ask you, or one detail
12 question perhaps. This is another report, you see, Security Council
13 report 12th of November, 1998.
14 A. Is this after they made an agreement to -- yes, it is, yes.
15 Q. Yes. And if we go, Mr. Nort, straight over to the annex, which is
16 page 14 but it's -- page 14, top left-hand corner. That's it -- no, no
17 there. Absolutely right.
18 And this explains how -- at the top it says: "The period since
19 the previous report ... has been characterised by relative calm, with
20 sporadic fighting throughout Kosovo ..." Then at the bottom it deals with
21 the situation of the civilian population: "According to the UN High
22 Commissioner for Refugees, the continued crackdown by Serbian police and
23 military --" over the page, please -- "against the KLA strongholds has
24 forced an estimated 300.000 people to flee their homes. 200.000 displaced
25 within Kosovo and an estimated 50.000 internally displaced persons still
1 remaining in the open. Fear is still a major factor inhibiting their
2 return ..."
3 Well, now, you were emphatic --
4 A. That these figures were exaggerated.
5 Q. I beg your pardon?
6 A. I said there weren't so many, the figures were exaggerated.
7 Q. I'm concerned more with your very firm assertion, and I'm not
8 challenging the genuineness of your opinion, that to characterise the
9 forthcoming problem as a humanitarian catastrophe was inappropriate. If
10 the Secretary-General is right and we've got, in winter, 200.000
11 displaced, 50.000 in the open air, do you not think perhaps your emphatic
12 rejection of the tag "humanitarian catastrophe" should be reviewed?
13 A. No.
14 Q. How many people would have to be --
15 A. I think one is too many, but I certainly think the figure is
17 Q. Well --
18 A. There's been a lot of dispute and discussion with other people
19 about this since.
20 Q. But just be so good as to help me, Ms. Mahon: On the basis that
21 these figures are right - and you may not agree with the figures, but on
22 the basis that they're right - do you think 200.000 displaced and 50.000
23 in the open air would, in those circumstances, be sufficient to warrant
24 fear of humanitarian catastrophe?
25 A. If those figures were right, they would.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 A. I dispute that they are right. I also think that that kind of
3 numbers living out in the open air would have resulted immediately with a
4 human catastrophe, that you would have had thousands injured or dying,
5 particularly given the winters that occur in that part of the world.
6 Q. And just looking at the influx of refugees, it says: "As at the
7 13th of October, UNHCR was reporting a total of 20.500 refugees in
8 Albania, out of which 7.000 remain in the Tropljan district. During the
9 reporting period, the major flow of refugees entering Albania came from
11 Do you know anything about any of these things?
12 A. Only that I visited some of these people since, in the camps, but
13 they were the people who were displaced who didn't go back to Kosovo.
14 Q. And at no time have you spoken to or been given explanations by
15 any of the military leaders - I don't mean necessarily top level leaders
16 but mid-level leaders - who were in charge of the Serb force operations
17 that led to these people being expelled?
18 A. No.
19 Q. So you never -- your committees have never got their hands on the
20 documents that explain what the plan was, have they?
21 A. Which plan?
22 Q. Well, when military act, as you know, of course, the generals, the
23 colonels, the brigadiers will have plans, they'll have orders as to what
24 to do --
25 A. From governments.
1 Q. One would think so. Maybe sometimes one can only trace it up the
2 chain to an uncertain body, the next military man up, sometimes you can't
3 find it. But you've never seen any of those planning orders, have you?
4 A. From the Yugoslav army? No.
5 Q. Or -- never mind. Yes. One matter of detail, by the way.
6 Kragujevac, where you went --
7 A. Where the Zastava factory.
8 Q. That's right.
9 A. Yeah.
10 Q. You're aware it also has a very -- I'm not particularly concerned
11 about this part of the evidence but I just want to check. Are you aware
12 that it has a very large military component in its manufacturing plants?
13 A. It has. We went into the gun factory where they have a -- they're
14 very proud of it, they have these hunting rifles, et cetera, and they're
15 very well known worldwide. I don't know much about guns but I accept
16 their word for it that they're much sought after, et cetera. But
17 ironically, that wasn't bombed.
18 Q. But you accept, I mean, nobody likes war, it remains one of those
19 things that people -- well, it doesn't matter, we won't go into all that,
20 but -- never mind. I needn't bother further.
21 Finally, then, you say that -- you have said, and we looked at
22 some of the negotiating documents or the pre-negotiation documents, but
23 you have said that the Americans' objective was to their forces on this
24 territory, is that right?
25 A. Uh-huh.
1 Q. Which territory?
2 A. I think the former Yugoslavia, anywhere they could get a base.
3 And I think that ambition has been repeated throughout the former Soviet
4 Union and indeed now in the Middle East.
5 Q. And do you know what Serbia's present international intentions
7 A. Serbia's?
8 Q. Hmm.
9 A. No.
10 Q. To join --
11 A. To join the EU.
12 Q. Sorry?
13 A. To join the EU. They've sent observers to NATO as well.
14 Q. Of course there are various obstacles in the way of that, to do
15 with, for example, arrests of people wanted here. But if they do that, is
16 that going to constitute the same objective as having Americans on their
17 soil or is that rather a different objective?
18 A. I'm sorry, can you repeat that?
19 Q. Yes. If they do that, if they --
20 A. I'm not sure -- the screen's gone often as well, for some reason.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Would you have that attended to, please.
22 THE WITNESS: Sorry?
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, no. I'm asking Mr. Nort to attend to that.
24 THE WITNESS: Okay.
25 MR. NICE:
1 Q. So I mean if they're going to eventually join Europe and become
2 members of NATO, this doesn't seem to be the objective that you were
3 describing, the objective of the Americans having their forces on their
5 A. Well, we'll have to wait and see if Camp Bond-steel closes,
6 Mr. Nice. I think that's something for the future. I don't think I can
7 speculate on that. But I do think America intends to have bases all over
8 the former Soviet Union, including the former Yugoslavia.
9 Q. Thank you, Ms. Mahon.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, any re-examination?
11 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
12 JUDGE KWON: Microphone.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] What I said was just a few
14 questions, Ms. Mahon.
15 Re-examination by Mr. Milosevic:
16 Q. [Interpretation] You were shown some document here of the Contact
17 Group of the 8th of July, 1998. At the end of paragraph 2 there is a
18 sentence that I'm going to read out in its entirety because it's only two
19 lines: "[In English] The Contact group stressed its condemnation of
20 violence and acts of terrorism in pursuit of political goals from whatever
22 [Interpretation] Who were the terrorist forces regardless of or
23 from whatever quarter, as they say here, in Kosovo? Who were the
24 protagonists of this terrorism with political objectives?
25 A. The KLA.
1 Q. Thank you. Mr. Nice said that the Contact Group was united in its
2 views, and I am just going to look at an excerpt of the stenographic notes
3 in terms of what Rubin said. That was shown to you as well. Very
4 briefly. He talked about military plans and so on, and at the very end,
5 since he was asked: "[In English] I don't think it will be as any
6 surprise to you that we have long known that Russians have not supported
7 that option." [Interpretation] Meaning the military option. So do you
8 know about that? Do you know that the Russians were opposed to any
9 military option?
10 A. Yes, of course, and they made their views very well known on the
11 committees of NATO.
12 Q. Well, can it be asserted then that the Contact Group was united in
13 terms of its stand in view of what was going on or what was supposed to
15 A. I think the Contact Group were at that time seeking perhaps to be
16 evenhanded about the protagonists, although I find it difficult, when
17 you've got a terrorist group, to be evenhanded, although I do deplore all
18 the violence.
19 Q. Mr. Nice explained to you here that Milan Milutinovic went to
20 Paris to take part in the negotiations. May I remind you that at that
21 time Milan Milutinovic was president of the Republic of Serbia. As a
22 politician, do you think that there is anything wrong or abnormal with the
23 president of Serbia coming to take part in talks that have to do with
24 Kosovo and Metohija, Kosovo and Metohija being a part of Serbia?
25 A. None whatsoever.
1 Q. Thank you. Mr. Nice said that the talks you had and that you
2 mentioned here illustrated the views that you took and that they were
3 chats. Can you characterise your talks as chats, or were these serious
4 in-depth talks with your interlocutors?
5 A. Today, this morning. Today.
6 Q. Well, during the cross-examination, Mr. Nice said, since you were
7 talking about the talks you had in Kosovo and in other places, that
8 chatting like that did not help much. Did you consider that to be
9 chatting when you had these talks, when you went on the business you had?
10 Did you consider that to be serious business?
11 A. [Previous translation continues] ...
12 Q. And finally, one more thing. Mr. Nice said that you are partial.
13 Are you partial?
14 A. No, I'm not. I'm a seeking after peaceful solutions rather than
15 bombing and war. And I'm also very anxious that when we have a civil war,
16 that not just one side is blamed for that civil war, and so I suppose I've
17 been on a -- seeking the truth during all these visits I've made and all
18 these people I've talked to and all the meetings I've had.
19 On the question of chats, well, talks, well, how do you get
20 evidence about what's happening? You talk to people, and you take various
21 views on all these things, and you reach conclusions, and that's what the
22 Court is doing, and that's what politicians do. They don't necessarily
23 all reach the same conclusions.
24 MR. NICE: Your Honours, just this -- if that's the last
25 question. Just this: If you thought that I'd I mischaracterised what
1 Ms. Mahon said when I used the work "chatting," it was picking up on the
2 word she used at page 78, line 6, along with other descriptions of her
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: And the transcript should show that she answered
5 "No" to the question asked by Mr. Milosevic, "Did you consider that to be
6 chatting when you had these talks, when you went on the business you had?
7 Did you consider that to be serious business?"
8 THE WITNESS: Yes.
9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Never mind. You did say "No," but the transcript
10 should --
11 THE WITNESS: Yes, thank you, Mr. Robinson, yes.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Ms. Mahon. I have no
13 further questions, Mr. Robinson.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Mahon, that concludes your evidence. Thank
15 you for coming to the Tribunal to give it, and you may now leave.
16 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
17 [The witness withdrew]
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Kay, the Chamber will grant the application
19 that you made not to sit next week. In doing so, we take note of the
20 points that you made. Mr. Bulatovic will only be arriving in The Hague on
21 Tuesday. Mr. Bulatovic is a witness of very great importance to
22 Mr. Milosevic's case, and it is only due to his ill health -- or to health
23 or to health matters relating to his family that he will only be able to
24 attend on Tuesday. We also take note of the fact that there are other
25 problems relating to -- to witnesses and their attendance. But I am to
1 say that the situation is exceptional, and it is not to be taken as a --
2 as a precedent. The Chamber expects in the future that Mr. Milosevic will
3 have his witnesses ready to testify at the dates and times that he has
5 MR. KAY: I'm much obliged, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: That being the case, we are adjourned until --
7 until Tuesday, March the 14th, at 9.00.
8 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.32. p.m.,
9 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 14th day
10 of March, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.