1 Wednesday, 11 September 2002
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.38 a.m.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Good morning, everybody. May we hear the case,
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning. This is Case Number IT-97-24-T, the
8 Prosecutor versus Milomir Stakic.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. And the appearances, please.
10 MS. KORNER: Joanna Korner assisted by Ruth Karper, case manager.
11 Your Honours, good morning.
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. And for the Defence, please.
13 MR. LUKIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Branko Lukic and
14 Danilo Cirkovic for the Defence.
15 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, before the witness is brought in, I said
16 I had completed my examination-in-chief yesterday. I'm sorry, I forgot to
17 ask one question. I wonder if I may reopen to ask one question.
18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: The Defence has no objection?
19 MR. LUKIC: No objections, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May the witness be brought in, please.
21 In the meantime, for the transcript, I forgot yesterday to admit
22 the following documents: S323 and S323-1. Hereby admitted into
23 evidence. We discussed it already yesterday. Thank you.
24 [The witness entered court]
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Good morning, Mr. Merdzanic. You can hear me?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning. Yes, I can hear you.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: The Office of the Prosecutor has one or several
3 additional questions. Please.
4 WITNESS: IDRIZ MERDZANIC [Resumed]
5 [Witness answered through interpreter]
6 Examined by Ms. Korner: [Continued]
7 Q. Doctor, just, in fact, one question -- or maybe only one. I asked
8 when you were walking down the street to the centre of Kozarac whether you
9 had been able to see the mosque and you said no. Did you at any time,
10 either on the journey from Prijedor to Trnopolje or thereafterwards when
11 you left Trnopolje and went to Kozorac, did you see -- did you pass any of
12 the mosques?
13 A. On my way to Trnopolje, or rather from the camp, you could see a
14 mosque. I did not pay much attention to mosques at that point. But even
15 while we were in the camp still, that particular mosque was set fire to.
16 And I heard later on that other mosques in the area were also burned down,
17 but I did not see any of those myself, or at least I didn't pay attention.
18 Q. The mosque that you saw on your way either to Trnopolje or from
19 it, which one was that? Do you remember?
20 A. That was the mosque that was near the camp. You could, in fact,
21 see it from the camp itself. I remember I saw that particular mosque.
22 But right now, I can't visualise any of the other mosques I may have seen.
23 Q. The one you could see from the camp, do you know where that was,
24 what area?
25 A. Well, that was roughly to the northwest of the camp. Perhaps
1 500 metres from the camp.
2 Q. And did the area have a name? Or was it part of Trnopolje itself?
3 A. Each hamlet in that area had a name, but they were all part of
5 Q. And I'm sorry to press you on this, but are you able to say the
6 name of the hamlet where the mosque was that you could see?
7 A. No. But on the sketch we used yesterday, perhaps I could point it
8 out to you, the rough area where the mosque was.
9 MS. KORNER: All right. Perhaps you could have back, then --
10 Q. The sketch you did of where Trnopolje was and the road to
12 A. The camp, the sketch of the camp.
13 MS. KORNER: Right. Okay. In that case, that is Exhibit 321-2,
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I remember that mosque because later
16 on we saw it burning.
17 If you can please just blow this up a little bit so I can see the
18 whole thing.
19 MS. KORNER: I'm sorry, we can't see anything at the moment. All
20 right. But the witness needs to see the whole map.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I need the whole image.
22 If you take this road towards Prijedor, I think the first street
23 on the right led straight to the mosque. And the mosque was roughly in
24 this area here.
25 MS. KORNER:
1 Q. I'm going to ask you to be given the map of the actual area of
2 Prijedor that I think you looked at earlier and see if you can -- I can't
3 remember what the number is now.
4 MS. KORNER: Yeah, that one. Thank you.
5 THE REGISTRAR: S146.
6 MS. KORNER: Thank you very much.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know if perhaps you have
8 another map, an even bigger one. The mosque may have been part of the
9 hamlet of Trnjani. At any rate, it was in this area.
10 MS. KORNER:
11 Q. Don't worry, Doctor. I won't press you further. I think that's
12 the best we can probably achieve.
13 MS. KORNER: Thank you very much.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. The Defence is prepared for
16 MR. LUKIC: Yes, we are, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Then the floor is yours, please.
18 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
19 Cross-examined by Mr. Lukic:
20 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Dr. Merdzanic.
21 A. Good morning.
22 Q. Did you have a good night's rest?
23 We speak more or less the same language, so I would ask you to
24 please pause a little after my question so that the interpreters could
25 catch up and do their part of the job.
1 A. I'll try hard. If I speak too quickly, please, slow me down.
2 Q. There's no need to worry about that because both the Trial Chamber
3 and the interpreters will be quick to warn us, I'm sure.
4 My cross-examination will not take a particularly long time, and
5 it will not be as strenuous as the examination-in-chief proved to be. I
6 will merely just go through the transcript and ask you to clarify a number
7 of points you said yesterday. As I go along, I'll mention the page
8 numbers and line numbers. We are supposed to do this for the sake of the
9 transcript, but you should not be confused by this.
10 Can we begin, please.
11 On page 7, line 21, you said that you worked in Trnopolje. Does
12 this also refer to the period of April and May 1992?
13 A. Yes, that applies to that period of time, too, April and May 1992,
14 until the moment I was detained in the camp.
15 Q. You lived in Prijedor at that time, didn't you?
16 A. Yes, I did.
17 Q. Before the attack on Kozarac, the conflict in Kozarac, what was
18 the last time you were in Prijedor?
19 A. I can't remember exactly, but I think at the health centre or in
20 Kozarac, there should be some documents because we had our duty hours.
21 And we had duty in Kozarac. And some of us did their duty in Prijedor.
22 Those were night duties. Mine was in Kozarac. And on that particular
23 occasion, I was on duty in Kozarac all through the night. And that's how
24 I was stuck in Kozarac and could not leave Kozarac. I think that was
25 immediately before the ultimatum. Prior to that, I could have left
2 Q. As there was a series of ultimatums, can you just clarify this,
3 please: Was that the day just before the attack or the ultimatum of the
5 A. I have no -- I have no knowledge of there being a whole series of
6 ultimatums. I think this was two days before the attack, two days before
7 the 24th, which means that the day we're talking about was probably the
8 22nd. I did not take part in the negotiations. I can't remember the date
10 Q. So two days before the attack, you arrived from Prijedor in
12 A. No. Two days before the attack is when people no longer had the
13 possibility of leaving Kozarac which means that probably I had been in
14 Kozarac for at least one day at that time.
15 Q. Was it normal, although you worked in Trnopolje, for you to be on
16 duty in Kozarac?
17 A. Yes, that was perfectly normal because in Trnopolje, there was no
18 night duty. And all doctors in Kozarac did have to do night duties; and
19 as Trnopolje was part of Kozarac, I did my duty -- I did my night duty in
20 Kozarac. And those -- the other ones, they did their night duties in
22 Q. I would like to broach a different subject now. On page 9, line
23 14, the Prosecution asked you the following question: It was a question
24 about the change in the relationship of Serbs, the attitude of the Serbs,
25 towards the Muslims and Croats due to their failure to respond to the
1 mobilisation callups, and also concerning the war in Croatia.
2 You said that those who failed to respond to the callup were
3 hunted done by the military police and that such people were taken
4 forcibly to the front line and that Croats and Muslims often went into
5 hiding because of that. Are you aware that there was an agreement that
6 Muslims and Croats were not necessarily supposed to respond to the callup?
7 A. I never heard of any such agreement, but I know a lot of persons
8 who were hiding and who were even leaving Prijedor to go to distant places
9 to hide. And I know that the MPs came knocking on people's doors to look
10 for them to take them to the front.
11 Q. Can you please tell us, to the best of your knowledge, how many
12 were arrested in this way and sent to the front?
13 A. I don't know. I don't have that information.
14 Q. Can you please provide us with one name of a person who had that
15 sort of experience?
16 A. I can give you the names of those persons who went into hiding.
17 As far as those who were forced to go to the front, I can't give you a
18 single name.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 Page 10, line 3, you speak about Serb soldiers returning from the
21 front failing to return their weapons to the barracks, but rather, keeping
22 their weapons. Do you know if there was an obligation for members of
23 military units who returned from the front to hand their weapons back in?
24 A. I wouldn't know. I just know that they carried their weapons on
25 them and they kept -- they kept those weapons in their homes.
1 Q. On page 11, the last line on the page, you say that at the very
2 beginning, it was possible to leave Kozarac and to pass through the
3 checkpoints. You say there were checkpoints not only around Kozarac but
4 also in Orlovci, as well as along the Trnopolje/Prijedor Road. You go on
5 to claim that after the expiry of the ultimatum for Kozarac, Muslims were
6 from that moment on no longer allowed to leave Kozarac.
7 During your visits to Kozarac from Prijedor, did you see any
8 checkpoints set up and controlled by Bosniaks?
9 A. I have not seen a single Bosniak-controlled checkpoint, nor was I
10 ever searched at any such checkpoint.
11 Q. Is it your testimony today that you did not see the checkpoint in
13 A. No, I did not see a checkpoint in Kozarusa. Whose checkpoint did
14 you have in mind, Serb-held or Bosniak-held checkpoint?
15 Q. Bosniak-held checkpoint.
16 A. I've seen -- I've seen neither. Can you tell me exactly where
17 Kozarusa is?
18 Q. That's the village just before Kozarac on the Prijedor/Kozarac
19 Road if you travel from Prijedor.
20 A. No, I never saw a checkpoint there, a checkpoint with soldiers
21 looking at people's documents or stopping vehicles.
22 Q. Did you see a Bosnian-held checkpoint in Kozarac itself, about
23 200 metres off the main road?
24 A. A checkpoint, no.
25 Q. At that time in Kozarac, did you see any armed persons?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 A. Sometime before the ultimatum expired and in the two days before
2 the shelling, yes. You could see here and there perhaps a uniformed,
3 armed person. Sometimes you could perhaps see a civilian walking around
4 carrying a weapon. And as I've pointed out before, I went to see Cirkin;
5 and when I came there, I saw a group of young men who were carrying
6 weapons. It was not a very large group. I can't say if others were
7 somewhere else. But when I came there, there were, perhaps, about 15
8 young men with uniforms and weapons there.
9 I have to add, however, that I did not spend that much time just
10 walking about Kozarac. I was there to work, and perhaps I could see a
11 thing or two on my way to work or whenever we went to the pharmacy to get
12 the medicines for the clinic. But normally, I did not get to move about
13 that much.
14 Prior to that, however, I did go from Kozarac to Trnopolje to the
15 clinic. I went to work in an ambulance. And I know that to the left of
16 the road, there was a JNA tank; and to the right, there was a bus stop.
17 And JNA soldiers were standing there.
18 Q. How long before the clash in Kozarac did you see that tank?
19 A. I couldn't tell you the exact number of days, but I think from the
20 moment the JNA took over Prijedor.
21 Q. During your stay in Kozarac, did you learn of the existence of any
22 armed groups such as Ramiz's group or Kola's group?
23 A. Ramiz's group is unfamiliar to me. I heard about Kola from other
24 people's stories. People told me that there was a man named Kola, but I
25 couldn't give you any further details on that.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 Page 13, line 11, again, you refer to the moment the ultimatum
3 expired. You say that people were no longer allowed to leave Kozarac.
4 Was there any such order not allowing people to leave Kozarac, or were
5 people just simply afraid to leave? What was it that kept people from
7 A. Orders by which side?
8 Q. I would like to ask you to please clarify this point for us, why
9 people no longer left Kozarac.
10 A. As far as I know, at the Orlovci checkpoint, people were often
11 turned back. Their IDs would be checked there, and they would be turned
12 back to Kozarac. So this is how they returned to Kozarac and were
13 actually not able to leave the town. This is what my patients told me,
14 including the two pregnant women whose babies I delivered. This is just a
15 piece of information that I heard from others. Whether there was any such
16 order, I don't know. Well, I am sure that there were people who were
17 simply afraid to even try and leave Prijedor as well.
18 Q. At that time, were any entries into Kozarac allowed? Were other
19 people allowed entry into Kozarac from the outside?
20 A. I don't know. I couldn't affirm or deny it.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 On page 22 -- I apologise. Just a moment. On page 24, in line 3,
23 you spoke about the second location of the clinic at the outskirts of
24 Kozarac. You told us that it was a house which was naturally protected by
25 a small hill and wood. You also told us that in that house, there were
1 members of the police force in that house, the police who had already
2 moved in.
3 In those days, do you know how many people -- how many members of
4 the Kozarac -- how many days prior to that had those members of the police
5 force been relocated to that house?
6 A. No, I don't know that.
7 Q. On page 25, line 19, you speak about how you were trying to get a
8 permission to transport the wounded children outside Kozarac. You also
9 told us that this was not allowed to you, that you never got that
10 permission, and you also mentioned the fact that you had spoken to someone
11 for that purpose. Do you know who that person was?
12 A. No, I don't know who the individual was. He never introduced
14 Q. However, after the surrender, it was the wounded who left the
15 Kozarac first at the head of the column?
16 A. Yes. The wounded left the town first. They were followed by the
17 police, and finally by the civilians.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 You made mention of a dead man who remained at the clinic. You
20 also told us that later on, you went back to the clinic but that you did
21 not find him. Do you know who it was who removed his body from the
23 A. I don't know. It may have been members of his family, but I'm not
25 Q. On page 27, you speak about the killings that occurred in the
1 Sahoric house. You stated that people had been killed by a hand-held
2 rocket launcher. In Trnopolje, did you have an opportunity to talk to the
3 people who had participated in the burial of these men?
4 A. No, I did not. I don't know what happened afterwards. This woman
5 went to see Major Kuruzovic, but I don't know what happened later. I
6 don't know whether this woman is still alive, but I know that she was
7 living in Germany for a while. And I still have her phone number and the
8 phone number of her son. So I think that one could find out what
10 Q. Did she ever mention to you the fact that some of the people in
11 this group had been armed?
12 A. Which group?
13 Q. Of the people who were killed.
14 A. Well, no, she didn't say anything -- she didn't say anything
15 specific. She just mentioned this long-barrelled weapon which was used to
16 fire a rocket and which was hand-held.
17 Q. If you knew that other witnesses in this case had claimed that
18 these people had been killed by an automatic weapon, would you be prepared
19 to accept that?
20 A. I really couldn't say. I was not there. I was not present when
21 this incident took place. I just told you the story of an eyewitness of
22 this woman who told me what had happened.
23 Q. On page 34, you speak about your arrival in the Trnopolje camp.
24 You say that everything was disorganised, that there was no food
25 provided. Is it your impression that the decision to accommodate people
1 there had been taken in a hasty manner, or did you feel that it had all
2 been planned in advance?
3 A. Well, it's hard to say. Both are possible actually.
4 Q. You worked in Trnopolje for a while. Are you aware of the fact
5 that Serb refugees from Bosanska Bojna had been accommodated in Trnopolje
6 prior to the outbreak of the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina?
7 A. No, I'm not aware of that fact.
8 Q. Were there any Serb refugees from Croatia in Trnopolje in the
9 spring of 1992?
10 A. No, I'm not aware of that. I didn't treat in my clinic any of
11 these refugees at any rate.
12 Q. Likewise, you never heard from other people who visited your
13 clinic there that there was a large number of Serb refugees from Croatia
14 and Bosanska Bojna living in Trnopolje at the time?
15 A. No, I did not.
16 Q. On page 69, you spoke about the fact that Serbs had ethnically
17 cleansed village by village. When you were in Trnopolje, you were not
18 able to know where exactly and in which villages the fighting took place?
19 A. No, you're quite right. We didn't know about the fighting.
20 Q. On the following page, page 70, you told us that whenever Serbs
21 entered a village, they had with them lists with the names of the people
22 that were to be killed. Did you personally ever see any such list?
23 A. I know that sometimes they would come to the camp with such
24 lists. I know that Slavko Puhalic used one of such lists to find
25 Vasif Gutic's relatives. I don't know whether those were the same lists,
1 but I simply told you what I had heard from the refugees of these
2 villages, that is, that they had searched for people according to some
3 lists with names.
4 Q. What kind of function did Slavko Puhalic have in the camp?
5 A. I believe he was Slobodan Kuruzovic's deputy. He was not a simple
6 guard at any rate.
7 Q. Do you know what rank he held?
8 A. I think he walked around without any particular insignia of rank.
9 Q. What kind of uniform did he wear?
10 A. Most of the time, he wore a green and brown camouflage uniform.
11 Q. You also said that Slavko Puhalic had told you at one point in
12 time that a meeting was supposed to be held where a decision to the effect
13 that only 3 per cent of the Muslim population should be allowed to stay in
14 Prijedor was supposed to be reached. Can you tell us when it was that
15 Slavko Puhalic told you this?
16 A. It must have been sometime in July, but I couldn't tell you
17 exactly when.
18 Q. Was anyone else present when you talked, when the two of you
20 A. I believe this conversation took place at the clinic, so other
21 people may have been present. I don't think actually that we were alone.
22 Azra was maybe present, or Dr. Gutic. I don't know. But we were not
23 alone definitely.
24 Q. When you say "Gutic," "Dr. Gutic," you mean Vasif Gutic?
25 A. Yes, Vasif Gutic, medical student. He was not a doctor yet.
1 Q. Did you have an open conversation with Slavko Puhalic?
2 A. What exactly do you have in mind when you say "an open
4 Q. Were you friends with Slavko Puhalic?
5 A. No, we were not friends. I mean, we didn't know each other from
6 before. We never socialised; we were never friends, no.
7 Q. On page 72, you speak about a convoy which was organised in
8 Trnopolje and which eventually left for Mount Vlasic. You told us that
9 anyone could join this convoy and that it was not organised on the basis
10 of any lists. Yes, please.
11 A. Finish your question.
12 Q. Did any women and children join this particular convoy?
13 A. Yes, women and children also joined this convoy. I just wanted to
14 add that normally there were no lists made for any convoys, not on that
15 occasion nor before.
16 Q. On page 74, when asked by the Prosecutor as to any preparations
17 that may have been done before the visit of the journalists, you said that
18 there had been a fence set up before their arrival fencing off one portion
19 of the camp where detainees who had arrived from Omarska and Keraterm were
20 placed. I should like to know how many days prior to the visit of the
21 journalists this fence had been put up, if you can remember.
22 A. Two days maybe. Right before the visit of the journalists, at any
23 rate. It had not been there for any longer period of time.
24 Q. But it was taken off before the second visit of the journalists?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. So how long was it in place, if you can remember?
2 A. Ten days, maybe two weeks at the maximum. One can easily
3 calculate the date of the second visit of the journalists because when
4 they arrived for the second time, it was no longer there. At any rate, it
5 was there for a brief period of time only.
6 Q. However, it was fencing off the area where people who had been
7 brought from Omarska and Keraterm were placed; no other detainees were
9 A. Yes, you're correct, at the time when the fence was there.
10 Q. Later, when the fence was taken down, the people from Omarska and
11 Keraterm mingled with other detainees in Keraterm. Is that correct?
12 A. Yes, that is.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think it's -- the question was one you wanted
14 to state, in Trnopolje, and not in Keraterm.
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. There is a mistake in the transcript, so let me ask my question
17 once again, although you have already given your answer. I may have
18 phrased it wrongly.
19 Speaking of the people from Omarska and Keraterm, were they later
20 together with other detainees of Trnopolje after the fence had been taken
22 A. Yes, that is correct. They were together with other detainees.
23 Q. Did Major Kuruzovic have a house with an office in the vicinity of
25 A. He had a house very close to Trnopolje. I can show you exactly
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 where it was on the map.
2 Q. Who stayed in this house?
3 A. I couldn't tell you exactly. He constantly moved around with the
4 Balaban brothers. Slavko Puhalic was also there very often. As to who
5 stayed with him in this house, I don't know. I couldn't tell you that.
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May we please provide the witness with the
7 sketch of Trnopolje. I don't recall the exact exhibit number. I think it
8 was -1 or -2, please.
9 Can you point out on this sketch where the house was located you
10 just mentioned.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Here were the quarters of
12 Major Kuruzovic. At the very beginning of the camp's operation, I'm not
13 sure if he was there or somewhere else. But I know for sure that at a
14 later stage, he was spending all of his time there.
15 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: For the transcript, we are discussing now on the
16 basis of -- Madam Registrar, could you please give me the number.
17 THE REGISTRAR: S321-2, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: On the basis of S321-2, on the top of this
19 sketch to the right-hand side. Did you want to indicate the first or the
20 second house to be seen on this sketch?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This house with the circle.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: It would be to the right-hand side on the top of
23 this sketch. Thank you.
24 MR. LUKIC: [In English] May I proceed, Your Honour?
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Can you please tell us how you learned that Major Kuruzovic was
3 staying in that house? Could you actually see the house? Did you pass
4 the house?
5 A. Well, the sketch is no longer at hand. I used to pass by a house
6 that was closer to where I was staying. But I saw the other house there,
7 and I was told that Major Kuruzovic was staying in that house.
8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We'll show you the sketch again so you
9 can show us everything.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I used to pass this house. There
11 were two women here, two women I was supposed to examine. And here, there
12 was a guard post. From Kozarac, you could see this area here. And it was
13 no secret, after all. Everyone knew that Major Kuruzovic was staying in
14 that particular house. I had no need to pass that particular house to
15 know that he was staying there.
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: For the transcript, the witness pointed to a
17 house located on the road, to the left-hand side of the road, on the top
18 of the sketch, the second house on the left-hand side.
19 Please proceed.
20 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Q. [Interpretation] In that house, aside from Major Kuruzovic, were
22 there any soldiers there?
23 A. There was a guard post right here. As to whether there were any
24 soldiers actually staying in Major Kuruzovic's house, I really couldn't
1 Q. Were there any civilians staying in that house?
2 A. No, not as far as I know. Those houses were empty. It was only
3 in this house here that those two women were staying.
4 Q. In Major Kuruzovic's house, were any detainees being kept there?
5 A. Not that I knew. I never went to that house, so I was not in a
6 position to know.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 We spoke about convoys, and we said that no lists were being drawn
9 up for the convoys. However, on page 81, you also mentioned that you were
10 forced to sign certain documents without which no person was allowed to
11 leave the camp. Do you know if those documents had been issued by people
12 from the Red Cross? Were those documents signed by Pero Curguz?
13 A. No, those documents were not signed by Pero Curguz. Those were
14 uniformed persons. We didn't know who they were; they weren't guards.
15 But this only applies to the very last convoy when the camp was being
16 closed down and when I was on my way out. That was the only convoy for
17 which the signing of those documents was required. That was the convoy
18 with the International Red Cross.
19 Q. When you spoke about the obligation to sign over property, to sign
20 over your property to Republika Srpska, was that document signed by anyone
21 from the Serb authorities or from the International Red Cross?
22 A. No. Certainly no one from the International Red Cross. We did
23 speak to the International Red Cross and asked them what we should do.
24 What they told us was: "Just go ahead and sign those documents because no
25 laws will acknowledge such documents, and you can sign it without worrying
1 because those documents would not be used." We had benches put in front
2 of us, and one by one we had to sign those documents. And only after each
3 one of us had signed those documents were we allowed to get on the bus.
4 Q. Aside from the last convoy which you joined and which was
5 organised by the International Red Cross, do you know who had organised
6 the previous convoys?
7 A. The previous convoys had been organised by the Serbs. Kuruzovic
8 would always know about convoys at least a day ahead. And then apart from
9 the guards, there would usually be some military personnel there. There
10 was this man Branko Beric. I think he was a veterinarian technician. With
11 a number of his own people, they would just line up on either side of the
12 road, and then women and children two by two would join the convoy.
13 Q. Did you know that actually those convoys had been organised by the
14 Republika Srpska Red Cross?
15 A. No, I didn't know that.
16 Q. Did you know that a Red Cross office had been opened in Trnopolje
17 as early as the 28th or 29th of May, 1992?
18 A. An office of the Serbian Red Cross was opened -- I can't remember
19 the exact date. But I agree that it was in late May that they arrived in
21 Q. We saw yesterday that in Trnopolje, you had a camera in your
22 possession. Was the camera yours or did it belong to Azra Blazevic?
23 A. It belonged -- the camera belonged to Azra Blazevic.
24 Q. Were you searched on your way into the camp?
25 A. No, we were not searched upon our arrival in Trnopolje.
1 Q. Did you have your personal documents on you?
2 A. Yes, I had my ID.
3 Q. Page 82, line 13, you said what happened in the old town in
4 Prijedor had nothing to do with the war. You went on to explain that the
5 destruction, the burning of that district of Prijedor, was a result
6 completely unrelated to any military activities.
7 A. Yes, that's correct.
8 Q. Do you know which side members of Bosniak and Croat units had
9 arrived from during the attack on Prijedor on the 30th of May, 1992?
10 A. I heard about the attack when we left the camp. I heard something
11 about the attack even during my stay in the camp. I heard that they
12 passed through those parts, but the houses were bulldozed into the ground
13 long after those activities, long after the military activities in
14 Prijedor had ceased. Kozarac itself was not destroyed during the
15 shelling. But after everyone had already been expelled, that's when they
16 pulled down all the churches and mosques.
17 Q. Did you know about another attack on Kozarac and another attempt
18 by Bosnian forces led by Alagic, Kemal, also known as Divjak, to take
19 Kozarac back?
20 A. First time I hear of it.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 Did you know that the fiercest fighting on the 30th of May, 1992,
23 that is, did you hear about this from the other people with whom you were
24 staying in Trnopolje, that the fiercest fighting took place in the old
25 town and on Partizanska Street?
1 A. I only heard about one single attack on Prijedor. I couldn't tell
2 you the date, but what I heard was that everyone was captured or killed
3 within a single day. We also heard that one of the Serbs there got killed
4 on that day. I can't remember that person's name.
5 Q. Did you know that within the framework of the Kozarac Territorial
6 Defence there was also a medical corps?
7 A. No, I didn't know that. What I did know is that afterwards, they
8 asked us where all the surgeons from Croatia were, that apparently there
9 was a bunker hospital somewhere, that all the surgery equipment was buried
10 underground somewhere. But all those obviously were lies and
12 Q. On page 83, line 10, you say you were approached by
13 Mladen Mitrovic. Allegedly he had orders to kill you and to keep you from
14 leaving the camp alive. Did Mladen Mitrovic tell you on that occasion who
15 he had received that order from?
16 A. No, he didn't tell me. And I'm not sure whether he was just out
17 to intimidate me or whether he really meant what he said. Speaking of
18 which, I forgot to say that Mladen Mitrovic had taken five people out of
19 the camp and killed them, unregistered people.
20 Q. The last incident you have just described, was that also a result
21 of an order, or was it Mladen Mitrovic acting of his accord?
22 A. Let me explain this: The military or the military police, I think
23 they had white belts, they arrived in a military vehicle from Prijedor
24 with five people, and these five persons were then handed over to the
25 guard in Trnopolje. They put them up in the local commune building.
1 After that, a man wearing a military uniform arrived in a civilian
2 vehicle and entered that room with Mladen Mitrovic. They beat those
3 people for a very long time, and then they took them outside the building
4 one by one towards the pond. And they kept beating them on their way to
5 the pond, and eventually killed those people down there. That's what we
6 heard. I'm not sure, but we heard that Major Kuruzovic was fishing at the
7 pond at that time, and that he had actually made the decision to have
8 those people killed because they had not been registered up to that point.
9 Q. Were all the other people in Trnopolje registered?
10 A. Yes, at that time already. But there were three registered
11 persons who were taken to Kozarac for forced labour.
12 Q. Did you ever see the video footage made by Penny Marshall about
13 the inmates of Trnopolje?
14 A. I suppose I did, yes. Whether there was more, I don't know. But
15 I certainly did see some of her footage.
16 Q. That was shown before the Court here, so we don't want to waste
17 time on this now. But let me just ask you the following question:
18 Penny Marshall went into the fenced-off area of the construction material
19 shop that was fenced off with barbed-wire, and she was taking footage of
20 people inside the camp -- inside the fencing, the barbed-wire fencing. Is
21 that correct?
22 A. No, that's not correct. Let me explain this to you. When
23 Penny Marshall came, the inmates from Keraterm had already been brought
24 there. If you show me sketch number 2, perhaps I can explain everything
25 to you. It's a sketch just like this one, but a different one.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: [Previous translation continues]... Sketch
2 number 2 on the ELMO, please.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's the one.
4 The first time Penny Marshall came, the inmates from Keraterm were
5 here. And the fencing stretched from the big hall, and then this stretch
6 of the fencing had been there before. This is the fence next to the
7 shop. And then a fence was put up here, and the inmates she filmed were
8 inside this area here which was fenced off. She came in through the
9 fence, and she was inside the fencing surrounding the shop.
10 At that time, the large convoy from Omarska which was later put
11 here had not arrived. So she was filming from this fenced-off area -- she
12 was filming a different fenced-off area. I'm not sure if the Prosecutor
13 has those films, but I have pictures showing exactly the positions of
14 those inmates.
15 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I please ask the witness to mark on the
16 document before you the exact position of this fence you mentioned. And
17 then let us take this document --
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This sketch here, I marked it as
19 number 3. It's the dotted line here. Here is where the hall was, and
20 then a fence was put up here. This fence had been there already. And
21 this fence was then made for the inmates from Keraterm. So it was
22 completely fenced off.
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You have a marker in your hand. Could you
24 please mark this line once again with the marker. Yes.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the fence that had been put
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 up at some time -- some time earlier.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please proceed.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. So your testimony today is that in addition to the fence facing
5 the person filming on that video footage, we should also be able to see
6 the lateral fencing.
7 A. I only said that I saw a tape in which, yes, you can see. I was
8 at a trial in London, and we were talking about that particular fence. We
9 had video footage showing fencing from all sides.
10 Q. The lateral fence you've just mentioned, how high was it, can you
11 tell us, please?
12 A. Do you mean this one here?
13 Q. Yes.
14 A. The fence on the side, well, the highest part of the fencing, the
15 one that belonged to the fence, was over 2 metres high. And the one I'm
16 talking about may have been about a metre and a half. I think the one on
17 the other side was even lower, perhaps up to my chest, but certainly not
18 2 metres.
19 Q. This fencing stretched all the way to the dom building, the
20 community centre building?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. It surrounded the community centre, and then the right-hand
23 stretch of this fencing and the fencing surrounding the shop, that was a
24 closed circle, the fencing, wasn't it?
25 A. Yes, indeed it was.
1 Q. Can you please explain then how the women and children entered the
2 community centre, the dom, if the gate was made of wire?
3 A. Let me explain this. Women and children were not in the cultural
4 centre at all. Before the journalists came, there was a convoy which the
5 women and children joined and left the camp. Some of the men left with
6 that convoy, too. The remaining women were put up on one of the upper
7 floors where the offices of the football club used to be, and then there
8 was a flight of stairs on the outside of the building which you could see
9 to reach the upper floor. And then the camp inmates from Keraterm, who
10 had arrived from Keraterm, they could enter this hall here. And in this
11 hall, there were just male inmates and no women.
12 Q. Were the camp inmates, the male camp inmates, allowed to enter the
13 community centre?
14 A. Yes, they were. They were allowed to enter the big hall.
15 Q. And what about the women and children? Where were they
17 A. On the upper floor where the offices of the local football club
18 used to be.
19 MR. LUKIC: [In English] It would be a convenient time, Your
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes. Before the break, could the witness please
22 mark with the marker he has in his hands all the areas where there were
23 fences, and please indicate those fences that were, according to your
24 testimony, pulled down for the one or other purpose so that we are aware
25 where there was normally a fence in addition to that what you marked
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The fence made specially before the
3 arrival of the inmates from Keraterm that is this stretch here, this
4 stretch here, and this stretch here. The fence that had already existed
5 went all the way around. I think it had a hole here, and another hole
6 there. Afterwards both these fences were taken down, both of them.
7 This part of the fencing here, the construction material shop, it
8 was also a wire fence. But the poles were made of steel. And this fence
9 here made by the inmates had wooden poles.
10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So could you please, because it's difficult to
11 understand from the transcript, mark especially the part of the fence that
12 was pulled down sometimes by crossing this part of the fence. And then
13 additionally, also with a marker, mark the other parts of the fence. But
14 first, the part of the fence which was sometimes pulled down.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't quite understand, Your
16 Honour. What do you mean by "sometimes pulled down"?
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You mentioned that -- you just pointed to this
18 area that for the purposes of --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The interpretation I got was "fence
20 taken down." So I didn't quite get the translation.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You mentioned earlier that on several occasions,
22 a fence was pulled down. And could you please indicate the distinction
23 between what one could call a permanent fence and a provisional fence.
24 You made, just some minutes before, the distinction yourself.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Precisely. The fence that had been
1 there, that's this fence here.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Could you please mark it.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There's a dotted line representing
4 that fence. Dot line, dot line, dot line. That's how I marked it on my
5 drawing. Every fence is marked in a different way. Dot line, dot line.
6 So this is the fence that had been there from before.
7 The fence that was made immediately before the arrival of the
8 inmates just has lines and no dots.
9 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, may I make a suggestion, that be marked
10 in one colour and the other in another. It may become a little bit
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes. Do we have for the other one, yes. Blue?
13 THE WITNESS: [Marks].
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please, once again, what you are marking now
15 additional in blue. That's which fence?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I circled this in blue now. That's
17 the fence that was put up immediately before the arrival of the camp
18 inmates from Keraterm.
19 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
20 Any additional? We can see a little bit higher on the same sketch
21 also such a line. Does this mean that there was also a kind of fence?
22 This one, yes.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You mean this one here surrounding
24 the school building. That's also another fence that had been there
25 earlier. It was a very small, low iron fence. There was another very low
1 fence here.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Could you mark it, please.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Outside the clinic courtyard.
4 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Those fences you just mentioned.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the gate. I think it
6 stretched up to here somewhere. And then the school building fence here,
7 there was a gate, and here there was a fence surrounding the school
8 building. There was another gate here, I think, through which you could
10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
11 Any additional remarks to this sketch by the parties, or
12 questions? This is not the case. Then this document previously marked as
13 S324 will be with the additional marks on it now Exhibit Number S324-1.
14 And may we please ask the Office of the Prosecutor to provide the parties
15 and the Bench with colour copies of S324-1, and the registry, please, not
16 to be forgotten.
17 The trial stays adjourned until 11.40.
18 --- Recess taken at 11.07 a.m.
19 --- On resuming at 11.50 a.m.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please be seated.
21 And the Defence may proceed, please.
22 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. [Interpretation] Dr. Merdzanic, I should like to show you a video
24 footage, and then later on ask you if you can clarify for us which fence
25 exactly we are talking about. I think that some of the fences will be
1 visible on the footage.
2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now play the video, please.
3 MS. KORNER: Say it again.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] If you need to make a comment, Doctor,
5 please, let us know and we will stop the video.
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: But first of all, let's start the video, please.
7 [Videotape played]
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Stop.
9 This here is the fence connecting the big hall, and this section
10 here. This is the fence I was talking about, the one on the side which is
11 connecting the large hall and the fence which is separating the area of
12 the construction material shop.
13 Can we continue.
14 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Can we, therefore, conclude that the fence was about waist high,
16 or slightly higher, 10 centimetres or so?
17 A. Depending on the height of the person, of course.
18 Q. And that it was not made of barbed-wire but of mesh wire?
19 A. [No Interpretation].
20 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Can we continue now, please.
21 [Videotape played]
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Stop, please.
23 This fence here that we see in front of us is the fence of the
24 shop, I think. And the one leading further on is the one fencing off the
25 road. But I think we will see it in a minute.
1 Can we continue, please.
2 [Videotape played]
3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May we stop here --
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Stop.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Just for clarification. This is correct, that
6 we can see a barbed-wire fence?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think that this is the fence which
8 you can see here on the south side of the area.
9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Was this fence in place before surrounding the area much the
11 construction material shop?
12 A. Yes, it is. It was there before. You also have footage showing
13 Penny Marshall -- I don't think you can see it here, but you can see it on
14 the other footage, the moment that she entered the area on this particular
15 spot here. Perhaps we will see it later on this video.
16 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Can we proceed, please.
17 [Videotape played]
18 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I think, I'm sorry, because of the lack
19 of time we have a number of different versions of this film,
20 unfortunately. I looked at one which does show the fence, I think, that
21 the doctor is talking about. It is bad quality. This one I don't think
22 is going to help.
23 The video technicians have in the booth another video which has
24 been set up in the right place. It's 0910. I wonder if that can be
25 inserted and we will see, I think, what the doctor is thinking of.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: But first of all, Defence should --
2 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: First of all, the Defence should have the chance
4 to continue on the basis of their contribution.
5 Do you want to make any additional comments to the video we are
6 playing right now?
7 MR. LUKIC: Obviously that it's not easy to work with this video,
8 so we will move on and try to clarify and to ask questions about some
9 photographs. And if we find better video, maybe it would be possible to
10 clarify some other questions regarding the fences.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Can you agree that we continue with the video
12 ready for being played right now?
13 MR. LUKIC: I don't think that it's possible to work on that
14 video, based on that video.
15 MS. KORNER: On this one.
16 MR. LUKIC: On this one, yes.
17 MS. KORNER: I think if Mr. Lukic doesn't mind, it may help him
18 and the doctor if we just try and insert the other video.
19 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Do you agree?
20 MR. LUKIC: Yes.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So please, let's work on the basis of the other
22 video. Could it be played right now.
23 [Videotape played]
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May we rewind a little bit, please.
25 Stop. Stop.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 This is the fence alongside the road, this one here. These are
2 the soldiers standing on the road. This fence is not the one surrounding
3 the construction material shop, but the one leading further above. What
4 we're still lacking is the photograph of the area above, but I haven't
5 seen an image of that area. I don't think it can be found. So we have
6 three sides of this fenced-in area established. But as for the fourth
7 side of the area, I don't think I've ever seen a video or a photograph
8 showing that part.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May we just, for clarification, ask for
10 rewinding to the beginning of this clip, that you may comment on this.
11 Please rewind to the beginning.
12 [Videotape played]
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Stop.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is probably -- it is a
15 close-up, but we can see that this is the same kind of the fence as the
16 one we saw a moment ago but which was not -- it did not have the added --
17 don't have barbed-wire added to it, the one alongside the road. It did
18 not have the barbed-wire added on top of it. But I don't think that it
19 makes any significant difference. The fence was made of the material that
20 was available.
21 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. As for this fence where we can see barbed wire, is this a part of
23 the fence which had been in place and which surrounded the construction
24 material shop on the south side?
25 A. What we see right now, yes, I think that this is the one on the
1 south side of the area. But the one that we saw a moment ago with those
2 soldiers standing on the road, you will see it -- you can see it -- I
3 think it has the same barbed wire on top of it. We can have a look at it
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Would you please play the video again.
6 [Videotape played]
7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Continue, please.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's gone now.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Stop. And rewind a little bit.
10 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Your Honour, please.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Stop and rewind a little bit.
12 [Videotape played]
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Stop, please. I think that this is
14 the fence. These are the soldiers standing on the road, and this is the
15 fence going alongside the road. You can see that there is a barbed wire
16 on top of it. But I don't think it's very important.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: The Bench wants to leave it to the parties to
18 provide us with the necessary stills if they regard it necessary for the
19 purpose of evidence. Thank you.
20 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Thank you, Your Honour. So we won't be
21 needing this video any more. Thank you.
22 I would like the usher to present to the witness S321-4, please.
23 6 and 7. Would you put it on the ELMO, please.
24 Q. [Interpretation] You say that the man who is lying next to this
25 paramedic is one of the patients, one of the inmates.
1 A. Yes. That is correct. He spent one night at the clinic. I think
2 that this was early on immediately after our arrival in Trnopolje.
3 Q. I wanted to ask you the following: On this photograph, we see
4 that the man is shaven.
5 A. Which man do you have in mind?
6 Q. The patient.
7 A. All I can see is that his hand is on his face, so I cannot really
8 tell whether he's neatly shaven or not. At least not on the basis of this
10 Q. You see the part of the face where the moustache is?
11 A. Well, I don't know how old this person is. I am sure that it was
12 a very young man. I'm not even sure whether he had already started
13 shaving at all.
14 Q. Thank you. S321-6, please.
15 On this photograph we see the lady whom you called Babica. Is
16 that correct?
17 A. Yes, the upper photograph is showing Babica.
18 Q. We see that she is covered with a blanket.
19 A. That is correct, with a blanket.
20 MR. LUKIC: [In English] May we see now S321-7, please.
21 Q. [Interpretation] When taking these photographs, did you use a
22 flash? At least, this is the impression we get by watching this
24 A. It is possible that we used a flash, yes. Azra should know
25 whether this camera has a flash or not. But it is possible that we used
2 Q. However, you told us that you took these photographs secretly. Is
3 it possible for him not to have noticed your taking a photograph of him?
4 A. Of course it is. He was in a very bad shape. His eyes were so
5 swollen that he couldn't see anything almost. If you have a closer look
6 at his mouth and his nose, you will see how swollen they are. This man
7 obviously didn't know where he was. He was half conscious.
8 Q. Is it your testimony, therefore, that when taking photographs of
9 your patients with a flash, you didn't think that they would know that
10 they were being filmed?
11 A. Well, we were not sure, of course, but it was our assumption that
12 they would not notice.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 MR. LUKIC: [In English] May we now see S321-14, please.
15 Q. [Interpretation] This man here, you said that he had spent a long
16 time in Trnopolje. Do you know what his name was?
17 A. No, I don't know his name. But I think he was from the village of
18 Trnjani, from that area. When you go from Trnopolje to Prijedor, the
19 village of Hrnici, I think there's a village there called Hrnici along the
20 road leading from Trnopolje to, well, yeah, I think it's the village of
21 Hrnici. If I could just have a map to have another look.
22 Q. Did you ask him about his name when you examined him?
23 A. I even know we knew his name, but I did not memorise it. There
24 may be other witnesses who do remember, but those people who were with me
25 there certainly know his name.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 MR. LUKIC: [In English] May we now see S15-15.
3 THE REGISTRAR: It's S15-15.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Do you know whether this group of people had arrived from Keraterm
6 or Omarska, or were these people inmates at Trnopolje also?
7 A. The man in the forefront is one of the persons who had been
8 transferred from Keraterm or Omarska. I don't know him. I didn't see him
9 there. As for the others, I really couldn't say.
10 Q. Can you please try to remember if this photograph was taken when
11 the persons from Keraterm and Omarska were being kept apart from everyone
12 else in Trnopolje, or can you not remember?
13 A. This photo was taken later, after the arrival of the journalists
14 when the fence had been taken down and when other journalists and
15 photographers began to arrive and take pictures. So this was definitely
16 taken by a journalist. This photograph was not taken by one of us.
17 Q. It's quite obvious, if you look at the photo, that aside from this
18 man in the foreground here who looks emaciated, all the other people in
19 the background look regularly or well-fed. Would you agree with that?
20 A. Yes, indeed, I do agree. But if you remember the video where you
21 can see the people behind the fence, you will probably agree with me that
22 those people look severely underfed, don't they?
23 Q. Dr. Merdzanic, I hereby conclude my cross-examination. I thank
24 you sincerely for answering our questions. I wish you a safe trip back to
25 wherever you live.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. May I ask the Prosecution, do you
2 have any further questions?
3 MS. KORNER: No. Thank you very much, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: It's limited what we have as questions.
5 Questioned by the Court:
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask you, I know you mentioned this
7 earlier, when you stayed in Trnopolje, was the camp ever visited by
8 high-ranking military persons or high-ranking politicians, to the best of
9 your knowledge?
10 A. You mean Serbs?
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I don't want to make this distinction.
12 High-ranking military personnel or politicians from where and which party
14 A. Yes, a military delegation came with a high-ranking officer. I
15 don't know what his name was. That was a group of Serb officers. There
16 was another man with them wearing plainclothes. He was not from
17 ex-Yugoslavia at all. I can't remember now. He was an important
18 politician or a delegate. He was quite tall. And he was accompanied by a
19 lady translator, interpreter. I can't remember his name.
20 I think that was the highest ranking and most influential
21 delegation to have arrived in Trnopolje. There were a number of
22 journalists later on who came and went. But I think that military
23 delegation with high-ranking officers and an officer who may have been an
24 American officer or a representative of the United Nations; I can't tell
25 you who he was.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: To the best of your recollection, could you tell
2 us, was it in the beginning or in the middle or by the end of the period
3 of time you had to stay in Trnopolje?
4 A. That was quite certainly after the visit of the journalists. I
5 don't know if the International Red Cross had already arrived or not. But
6 it may have been at some point in August, perhaps mid-August.
7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And to be on the safe side, I previously asked
8 for high-ranking military personnel or politicians. Was there ever any
9 other delegation or a visit by other military personnel or politicians in
11 A. Well, I can only talk about the clinic, so it was that delegation
12 that I've already referred to. I think on one occasion, a human rights
13 expert, an American, I think came too. I believe there was another
14 delegation visiting the camp, but they didn't visit the clinic. I can no
15 longer remember.
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
17 May I now turn to another issue. I didn't understand what you
18 told us this morning. It may be my mistake, on page 21, line 4. You
19 said: "I heard about the attack. When we left the camp, I heard
20 something about the attack even during my stay in the camp. I heard that
21 they passed through those parts, but the houses were bulldozed into the
22 ground long after those activities, long after the military activities in
23 Prijedor had ceased. Kozarac itself was not destroyed during the
24 shelling, but after everyone had already been expelled. That's when they
25 pulled down all the churches and mosques."
1 Could you please try to make a distinction, to the best of your
2 recollection, what did you -- in what condition did you see Kozarac the
3 last time you yourself had seen Kozarac?
4 A. You saw our clinic. Its walls were shell pimpled, and the windows
5 were shattered. And the roof was burned through by a shell. So that was
6 the type of damage we had. After I left the camp, I saw pictures of
7 Kozarac that were taken at a later stage. And you could see the whole
8 street leading from the junction outside Kozarac, I saw buildings in those
9 photographs completely destroyed which was not the case when we were
10 leaving Kozarac.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So to be quite clear, you saw Kozarac, the
12 buildings, destroyed in part, and then later on, for what purposes soever,
13 it was bulldozed down that there was no reminder. Is this correct?
14 A. I'm not sure if they used bulldozers or if Kozarac was mined, but
15 I know that in the old town they did indeed use bulldozers.
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And once again, the same question with respect
17 to the old town. Is it correct that first the old town was destroyed and
18 houses there were destroyed in the same manner as you just mentioned as
19 with respect to Kozarac, and then later on everything was, yeah, be it
20 bulldozed or in what way soever prepared that there could be seen no
21 reminder of this part of Prijedor? Would this be correct?
22 A. Yes, quite correct. As far as I know, the attack on Prijedor,
23 they just passed through, and the clashes took place in the town itself.
24 So in the old town, there wasn't nearly as much damage as in Kozarac
25 during the shelling. And the attack finished. Those young men were
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 captured or killed. And in the old town, the houses were completely
2 preserved with civilians still living inside those houses. I'm telling
3 you all this because my sister's husband was still staying there.
4 And then they were all taken away and taken to the camps. After
5 the houses had been looted, I had some construction materials in my house,
6 for example, and they took those things away in lorries. So whatever they
7 couldn't destroy by bulldozing, they simply burned the foundations of
8 those houses, but that was quite a while after the original attack.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you see the old town personally after the
11 A. No, not personally.
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: This is based on that what you heard from
13 neighbours and relatives. Correct?
14 A. Yes, that's correct.
15 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
16 May we, for a moment, go into private session, please.
17 [Private session]
12 Page 7860 – redacted – private session.
20 [Open session]
21 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: On the video we could see today, we could see
22 one guard in civilian clothes. In this regard, I would like to ask you:
23 Who ran the camp? Militaries? Paramilitaries? Police? Or whosoever?
24 A. Major Kuruzovic, at least as far as I knew, was in charge of the
25 camp. And he would come to the camp wearing military uniform. Before the
1 war, he was a civilian. He was not an active military officer. They
2 called him "Major" which means that he probably had the rank of major. He
3 was always wearing a uniform. But before the war, I repeat, he was not an
4 active military officer.
5 I think he was a teacher, a primary school teacher, or something
6 like that.
7 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: And what about the rest of the camp personnel,
8 who they were?
9 A. They were all wearing military uniform. The only exception was
10 Dr. Dusko Ivic and Mica. Sometimes they wore a military uniform, but
11 sometimes they would just come in wearing plainclothes. The Serbian Red
12 Cross, they were also wearing plainclothes, not military uniform.
13 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: And to the best of your knowledge, the Major
14 Kuruzovic and other military personnel, whom they were subordinated to,
15 the authorities in Prijedor or the authorities in Banja Luka?
16 A. I don't know about their hierarchy, how it was organised, the
17 chain of command. It must have gone through Prijedor, and then Prijedor
18 probably cooperated with the higher levels. But this is merely my own
19 opinion. Perhaps they were in touch. Probably they weren't in touch
20 directly with Karadzic. Probably first they went to Prijedor, and then
21 from Prijedor on to the higher levels of decision-making.
22 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Hvala, I have no more questions.
23 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, there's only one thing that arises out
24 of Your Honours' questions that's really this. We do have a video of
25 Kozarac - I think it was played in opening - taken in November 1992. I
1 don't know whether before the witness leaves, Your Honour would like him
2 to --
3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think it would be an excellent idea.
4 MS. KORNER: I don't know whether Your Honour wants to adjourn now
5 for the break. We need to hunt it down. That's the problem.
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes. But the witness shouldn't be waiting for
7 such a long period. If we could start now, I have one additional
8 question. Maybe the Defence does as well. If Mr. Koumjian could come
9 immediately, this would be excellent.
10 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, we ought to because I think I played it
11 in opening. If somebody can just find the tape that I played in opening.
12 I don't know whether it went to the Court after that. No. All right, we
13 are doing a search at the moment.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I, in addition, ask you, no doubt, it's for
15 the Judges to decide finally on the criminal responsibility of
16 individuals. But nevertheless, no doubt, you yourself have, when
17 recalling all these incidents happening in the area of Prijedor, Kozarac,
18 Trnopolje, what is your personal view? Who is responsible from your point
19 of view for that what happened in the area in 1992?
20 A. I believe it was planned years ahead. Most probably the planning
21 by the Serbs started with Milosevic, and those plans must have been
22 revamped when the disintegration of Yugoslavia began, when the war broke
23 out, when clashes started breaking out. I think top-level Serb
24 politicians were war-mongering and using propaganda to persuade their
25 people to oppose the Muslims and Croats.
1 It took some persuasion to convince my Serb neighbour with whom I
2 had lived my whole life that I was suddenly his enemy and that I was to be
3 killed. I don't understand how else this could be done. I must say that
4 there were Serbs who helped us, those who could.
5 But they were forced to take up arms and to fight alongside with
6 the other Serbs because they could either join them or oppose them. There
7 was no middle ground. I remember an elderly man who came to work as a
8 guard at the Trnopolje camp. He was an acquaintance of Mujo Tehnicar. He
9 came to our clinic. He was crying. He asked, he said if there was
10 anything I could do to help you, I would give you weapons, ammunition,
11 anything. But there was nothing much he could do, he said.
12 I think Serb propaganda was very strong. They said that Muslims
13 were preparing attacks against Serb civilians and children. They talked
14 about lists being drawn up. So allegedly, they were arming their own
15 people for the defence against Muslims. So probably the true skill of
16 their politicians was the way they managed to persuade their own people to
17 wage war on others. I think the greatest responsibility rests with the
18 top levels of decision-making among the Serb politicians.
19 There were many Serbs probably who even failed to notice how they
20 had been drawn into that. Take, for example, the following issue: Why
21 was I put into the camp and then held there for such a long time? What
22 did I do? Can they name at least one thing that I did wrong? Mr. Stakic
23 is here. He's a physician just like I am, and he made decisions
24 concerning the camps. He knew that we were there. He knew that his
25 colleague Jusuf Pasic, who was facing retirement, had been taken to
1 Omarska and killed there. He knew about dozens of doctors, physicians
2 being taken to Omarska and killed. Why? What for? Why were those people
3 killed? Those people were the Muslim intelligencia, and they meant
4 something, they were prominent people. Is there an answer to all of this?
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I thank you for these very personal remarks.
6 May I ask the parties, are there any further questions emanating from this
7 line of questions put by the Judges?
8 MR. LUKIC: We would like to have the power to object every time
9 when you pose this question, Your Honour. But as we don't have that kind
10 of power, we don't have any further questions.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: As I said earlier in this case, we have to make
12 a clear distinction between the criminal responsibility, but it is also of
13 extreme value to hear the opinions based on own experience, yes, on
14 experience at that time in the area that we get a view. And no doubt,
15 it's, as I mentioned, a very personal view. But I think the Defence also
16 should be aware that these views, in part, serves their own interests,
17 especially as regards the intent, the underlying intent which will be one
18 crucial point in our case.
19 And therefore, it's always helpful to hear these individual views
20 because one of the purposes, and one of the reasons, why we are mandated
21 to exercise our work here is to find the roots, the reasons, the basics of
22 what happened there and how we can overcome these difficulties in order to
23 have people living peacefully together once again in the area of Former
24 Yugoslavia. And therefore, under this mandate, opposed to ordinary
25 courts, it's necessary to put these questions.
1 I see Mr. Koumjian arriving. And maybe --
2 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, we do need a break, though, because we
3 haven't been able to -- it's quite a long tape. It's not the excerpt
4 tape. It's the full tape. So we'll have to ask Your Honours for a break
5 to set this up.
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Would it be possible to do it within five
7 minutes that we can conclude the testimony, say, until 10 minutes past
9 MS. KORNER: Yes. Your Honour, may I ask, then, I know it's
10 unusual, but when I said to Your Honour yesterday that I didn't think the
11 other case would require my attention, it is going to require my attention
12 and will from about 12.00. Would Your Honour forgive me and allow
13 Mr. Koumjian just to deal with the last part of this?
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: No doubt. I think the remaining part is to view
15 the video and to hear the comments by the witness on this video. So we
16 have a break now for about five minutes. Please, all standby and let us
17 know when we can start.
18 --- Break taken at 12.44 p.m.
19 --- On resuming at 12.58 p.m.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please be seated.
21 May we now see the video, please.
22 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, we have two very, very short clips.
23 The first one is from the ERN number V0000285. And, Doctor, watch this.
24 And please correct me if I am wrong if this is not the main street of
25 Kozarac, but the main road passing along Kozarac between Prijedor and
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I think that this was taken
3 from the road, although now I cannot see any specific landmarks. So I'm
4 not sure. But I think that it was taken from the road, the Kozarac/Banja
5 Luka Road looking in the direction of Omarska.
6 MR. KOUMJIAN: Is it possible to dim the lights a bit in the
7 courtroom? Sorry, I notice the screen was much easier to read in the
8 video booth than it is out here.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I'm afraid it will be extremely difficult
10 because we have the cameras, and they need the light for the cameras.
11 MR. KOUMJIAN: I see. If we could proceed and play the video.
12 And, Doctor, you can indicate at any time if you'd like to stop and
13 comment upon anything that you recognise.
14 [Videotape played]
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Stop.
16 We can continue.
17 [Videotape played]
18 MR. KOUMJIAN: I think that's the end of the clip of the road.
19 Further examined by Mr. Koumjian:
20 Q. Doctor, did you recognise any of the buildings or the section of
21 the road that was depicted on the video that was just played?
22 A. I didn't see any particular landmarks, so I'm not able to tell you
23 whether that exactly is the spot. We were moving from Kozarac towards
24 Prijedor, and that was the area that I saw during the shelling when we
25 were captured. As for the other part that I didn't see, I'm unable to
1 compare the situation as it was before with the one that was after. I saw
2 a video footage when the road leading into Kozarac could be seen. It was
3 filmed from the road going towards Kozarac. I remember that particular
4 one, but here I cannot tell you with any certainty.
5 Q. Okay. Let me just ask you a few questions about the road that
6 passed between Prijedor and Omarska alongside Kozarac. To get to Kozarac
7 itself is a short distance from that main road. Is that correct?
8 A. The south side of Kozarac town is situated alongside the road.
9 Q. Okay. So if you were passing --
10 A. I think that the building that we saw when we stopped the film is
11 the cafe located at the junction to the right side of the approach road to
12 Kozarac. But because I was not a hundred per cent sure, I didn't want to
13 make that comment.
14 Q. Would that video that you saw be consistent with the area that you
15 knew to be a view from the main road looking north towards Kozarac?
16 A. As we were being escorted from Kozarac -- I mean, at one point, we
17 turned left towards Prijedor. We turned right towards Prijedor, and we
18 left -- to the left was the road leading to Banja Luka. I think the cafe
19 that we saw was located at the corner, at the junction, of that road. But
20 what happened afterwards further down on the road towards Banja Luka, I
21 don't know. I didn't pay any attention to that.
22 Q. After your release from the Trnopolje camp, did you ever visit
24 A. No, never.
25 Q. You've never been back to Kozarac. Is that correct?
1 A. No.
2 Q. Okay. I have one more short clip to ask you to view. And that
3 would be -- I have the ERN number, V0002843. If that tape could be
4 played, please.
5 MR. KOUMJIAN: We could play the tape.
6 [Videotape played]
7 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, could we play the tape with the
8 sound. It might be -- it might give some explanation of what we're
10 [Videotape played]
11 "By the local Serb Militia, restricted to just a few blocks of the
12 town, once home to about 15.000 Muslim men, women, and children --"
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't see anything on my screen.
14 "And none of their..."
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I just got it a moment ago.
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: Perhaps we could back up since the witness --
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes, stop here for a moment. We discussed
18 previously the signs or emblems on both sides of the entrance door. Could
19 you identify and explain the meaning of these signs on the screen you have
20 before you. You can see an entrance.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The image was not on my screen a
22 moment ago, but I can see it now. To the right, you see a cross, and to
23 the left, a Serbian flag. As far as we heard, this is how they used to
24 mark the houses which were not supposed to be destroyed either because it
25 was a Serb house or because it was earmarked for a Serb.
1 MR. KOUMJIAN: Perhaps we could back up the tape because the
2 witness did not have it on his screen. Start it over again with the
3 sound, please.
4 "The Narrator: ...supervised by the local Serb Militia restricted
5 to just a few blocks of the town. Once home to about 15.000 Muslim men,
6 women, and children.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Stop, please.
8 "The Narrator: ...today there are no Muslims there, none. And
9 none of their X-marked homes is intact. Other homes in Kozarac have been
10 marked to survive --"
11 MR. KOUMJIAN: I think the witness had a comment back at the first
12 house if we could back up, he'll indicate where to stop.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think that this house is located
14 on the approach road to Kozarac, to the right side of the road. As I
15 said, I've seen a better film, a better footage, which clearly indicates
16 that this was Kozarac. But I think that this is the house which was
17 located on the right side of that road. And when we left Kozarac, it was
18 not destroyed. It was not damaged as it is now.
19 MS. KORNER:
20 Q. And, Doctor, when you talk about the house you just mentioned,
21 you're not talking about the house that's on the screen in front of you
22 with the sign saying --
23 A. No, no, no, the first one. The one which is partly destroyed
24 without a roof. Even further back, if we can rewind a little more,
25 please. This one here.
2 Q. This is the house that you were speaking of?
3 A. Yes, I believe that this is the house, the one located on the
4 right side of the road leading into Kozarac. The sawmill would be across
5 the street, I think. I believe that that was in -- that it was in the
6 same area. There is a much better footage which shows -- which shows the
7 whole street leading into Kozarac where you can see that very few houses
8 remained standing, the houses bearing those markings that I indicated.
9 But as we were leaving Kozarac, the houses were definitely not in this
11 MR. KOUMJIAN: We can proceed with the video, just to complete it.
12 [Videotape played]
13 "The Narrator: Of the town, once home to about 15.000 Muslim men,
14 women, and children. Today, there are no Muslims there, none. And none
15 of their X-marked homes is intact. Other homes in Kozarac have been
16 marked to survive, this one with the colours of the Serbian flag. This
17 one says, This is Serbian. They stand undamaged like the remaining Serb
18 residents of Kozarac surrounded in silence, deadly silence."
19 MR. KOUMJIAN: Thank you. I think that completes the video
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. May I come back to the cross marking
22 of houses. Please recall when we saw yesterday Exhibit Numbers S15-37,
23 -38, -39, and -40, we saw also your hospital marked this way. So it seems
24 to be, to a certain extent, ambiguous, this house on the one hand side
25 marked with a flag, and on the other hand, with this X mark. So do you
1 personally know about the meaning of these X marks?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, not exactly. I heard that there
3 were markings which were used to indicate which of the houses should be
4 destroyed and which should be preserved because Serbs were supposed to
5 move in because one of the Serbs had decided to take this particular
6 house. As to what specific markings those were, I don't know.
7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
8 The Defence will have questions on this?
9 MR. LUKIC: No, Your Honour, because obviously this witness does
10 not know anything about these markings, and we hope that we will be able
11 to clarify this matter during our case.
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. Any additional questions or remarks?
13 MR. KOUMJIAN: Just one question.
14 Q. Doctor, do you know, the clip that you're speaking of showing the
15 main street, was that where the -- there's a video of that clip being
16 shown to some women who were residents of Kozarac? And one of them makes
17 a remark that "this was the most beautiful house"?
18 A. I don't remember exactly, but I think that I have the footage
19 you're talking about at home.
20 Q. Okay. Thank you.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask the OTP, the two videos we saw today,
22 they are tendered?
23 MR. KOUMJIAN: They are, Your Honour. The only issue is, although
24 we don't mind tendering the entire tape, we didn't play the entire tape.
25 Would Your Honour like us to have copies made of those clips that were
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes, indeed, because no doubt we have to come
3 back to these points. It's relevant to find out what's the meaning of
4 this cross marking and the marking with the flag. So it would be of
5 assistance if we could be provided with those clips shown today in the
7 The first video we saw will be Exhibit Number S325; the second
8 one, S326. Objections?
9 MR. LUKIC: No objections, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Admitted into evidence.
11 This concludes the testimony, and I have to re-emphasise the
12 gratitude of the parties and the Bench that you were prepared to come here
13 and to give the witness on these incidents - we have to be neutral naming
14 these "incidents" - evidently opening once again wounds with you. And
15 thereby, we know how difficult it is for you to give these statements.
16 But you should be aware that your testimony has, once again, assisted us
17 one step further to coming closer to the truth. And we are extremely
18 grateful for this. Thank you once again.
19 The trial stays adjourned until 2.50, 10 minutes to 3.00.
20 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.16 p.m.
21 --- On resuming at 2.55 p.m.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please be seated.
23 As discussed already yesterday in a 65 ter (i) meeting, also for
24 the purposes of our transcript, the parties have to be informed that
25 Judge Fassi Fihri will not be in The Hague before, seen from an optimistic
1 point of view, the middle of next week, and in all likelihood not earlier
2 than the Monday starting the week after next week. So therefore, we
3 discussed already yesterday how to proceed. And as Rule 15 bis does not
4 allow for proceeding with only two Judges for a period of time longer than
5 three days, this period of time elapses today.
6 On the other hand, it's necessary to have heard these witnesses
7 who are prepared to testify in this case in the near future without asking
8 them to come a second time to The Hague. And first of all, we have to
9 take care that it's mandatory under the statute to proceed as fast as
10 possible. So therefore, the idea is that the witnesses planned now for
11 the near future, until the end of the Prosecutor's case, should be heard
12 under Rule 71 of the rules. This means that it's the most appropriate way
13 to hear these witnesses. It provides for the possibility that both
14 parties put questions to the witness, that we have a real examination,
15 cross-examination, and if the then present accused so wants, he also may
16 address the presiding officer under Rule 71.
17 And in addition, it means that the results of this examination
18 under Rule 71 have to be included in the hearing once more under Rule
19 71(E) of the rules, and this gives additional leeway for both parties to
20 comment on the outcome of these hearings.
21 No doubt, on the other hand, it means that the hearings take place
22 in the absence of Judge Fassi Fihri. Therefore, as discussed yesterday,
23 we regard it as necessary that we have the consent by the parties that we
24 proceed this way and that the accused, Dr. Stakic himself, consents to
25 this proceeding in the absence of Judge Fassi Fihri. This would be so
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 that there is no doubt about the scope of application, this would cover
2 the following witnesses: Mr. Edward Vulliamy, to be expected on Monday
3 and Tuesday; Madam Ewa Tabeau and Mr. Nicolas Sebire, this would be not a
4 continuation of the earlier hearing, but it would be a separate hearing
5 under Rule 71. It would be true also for Dr. Corin and for Dr. Ewan
6 Brown. And finally, for Mr. Dusan Baltic.
7 May I ask the parties whether they consent to this envisaged
8 proceeding? First, the OTP, please.
9 MR. KOUMJIAN: We do, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask the Defence.
11 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour, I had the opportunity to speak with
12 Dr. Stakic, and you have his full consent to proceed this way.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask Dr. Stakic in person, do you agree
14 with these proceedings under Rule 71 in the absence of Judge Fassi Fihri?
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I fully agree to
16 proceed as you have just advised.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. Please be seated.
18 As to the fact that we discussed this issue already yesterday, I
19 have to read out the following decision unanimously found by the two
20 Judges present in this case. It's an order for deposition evidence to be
21 taken pursuant to Rule 71 of 11 September, 2002. The written version may
22 be corrected, please.
23 It reads: "This Trial Chamber of the International Tribunal for
24 the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of
25 International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former
1 Yugoslavia since 1991,
2 "Noting that one of the Judges of this Trial Chamber, namely Judge
3 Fassi Fihri, is temporarily unavailable to sit in court due to ongoing
5 "Noting that on 6 September, 2002, the two present Judges of this
6 Trial Chamber ordered, pursuant to Rule 15 bis of the Rules of Procedure
7 and Evidence, that the hearing of this case continue in the absence of
8 Judge Fassi Fihri for the maximum period of three days permitted under the
10 "Noting further that as of the end of today, 11 September, 2002,
11 the three-day period will have expired; noting that Rule 71 of the Rules
12 set out a procedure permitting evidence for use at trial to be taken by
13 way of deposition,
14 "Noting that pursuant to Rule 71(A) of the Rules, the Trial
15 Chamber, where it is in the interests of justice to do so, may order,
16 either proprio motu or at the request of a party, that deposition evidence
17 be taken before a duly appointed Presiding Officer,
18 "Noting the agreement of the parties in this case to the use of
19 this procedure for direct and cross-examination of the following
20 witnesses, subject to any decisions on objections and matters of
21 admissibility being reserved to the Trial Chamber: Mr. Dusan Baltic,
22 Dr. Ewan Brown, Dr. Andrew Corin, Mr. Nicolas Sebire, Madam Ewa Tabeau,
23 Mr. Edward Vulliamy,
24 "Noting in particular that the accused, Dr. Milomir Stakic, has
25 consented to the use of this procedure,
1 "Noting further that the accused has agreed that Judge Vassylenko
2 may be present in the courtroom during the deposition proceedings" --
3 sorry, I forgot to ask you this question, Dr. Stakic: Do you agree that
4 Judge Vassylenko may be present in the courtroom during the proceedings
5 under Rule 71?
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, I fully agree.
7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would also like to take this
9 opportunity to ask you to please forward my regards and best wishes
10 concerning his health to the ailing Judge Fassi Fihri.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you very much. I will do so. You may be
13 I repeat the last paragraph:
14 "Noting further that the accused has agreed that Judge Vassylenko
15 may be present in the courtroom during the deposition proceedings,
16 "Considering that the unavailability of one of the members of the
17 Trial Chamber must not prejudice the right of the accused to be tried
18 without undue delay as provided in Article 21, paragraph 4(c) of the
19 statute of the International Tribunal,
20 "Considering the guidance on the interpretation of Rule 71(A) by
21 the Appeals Chamber of the International Tribunal in its decision of 15
22 July, 1999, in Prosecutor versus Zoran Kupreskic and others,
23 "Considering that the accused has explicitly consented to take
24 depositions under Rule 71 of the Rules in the case in the absence of Judge
25 Fassi Fihri,
1 "For the foregoing reasons and with the consent of the parties and
2 the accused,
3 "Pursuant to Article 21 of the statute and Rules 15 bis, 54, and 71
4 of the rules, orders proprio motu, that the evidence of the aforementioned
5 witnesses, namely, Mr. Baltic, Dr. Brown, Dr. Corin, Mr. Sebire,
6 Madam Tabeau, and Mr. Vulliamy may, be taken pursuant to Rule 71 of the
7 rules, such procedure to cease immediately upon the return of Judge Fassi
8 Fihri to active duty,
9 "Appoints as Presiding Officer for that purpose Judge Wolfgang
10 Schomburg, and further orders that the deposition procedure shall be as
12 "First, the depositions to be taken in a courtroom at the seat of
13 the International Tribunal during the normal court sessions as previously
14 scheduled; second, Judge Vassylenko may be present in the courtroom during
15 the deposition proceedings; third, all participants to be robed as usual;
16 fourth, the hearings to be public subject to any protective measures that
17 may be ordered in relation to particular witnesses; fifth, the record to
18 be transmitted to the Trial Chamber comprising three Judges, pursuant to
19 Rule 71(E) of the Rules.
20 "Done in English and French, the English text being authoritative,
21 followed by a signature of the Judge."
22 Any observations to this procedure?
23 MR. KOUMJIAN: Just one extremely technical observation. I think
24 that Your Honour said that it would be a new hearing of witnesses Sebire
25 and Tabeau, I think at least as far as Mr. Sebire when we ended,
1 Mr. Ostojic said that he had two more questions, although when I spoke to
2 him the other day on the phone, he said he had completed his
3 cross-examination. But technically I think the Defence did not complete
4 the cross-examination while Judge Fassi Fihri was here. So I would ask
5 that they indicate that they do not wish to have any further questions in
6 front of the three Judges that are -- that they can complete their
7 questioning in the deposition.
8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Respectfully, we disagree. We discussed this
9 because we expect a new document by this witness, and no doubt, this has
10 to be introduced, and the Defence has the right to cross-examine the
11 author of this new document, and it's also the right of the Judges to have
12 additional questions.
13 MR. KOUMJIAN: I understand that, but technically they didn't
14 finish the cross-examination in front of the three Judges.
15 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I'm aware of this, but on the occasion of taking
16 this deposition, it will be the possibility, if any, to put questions to
17 Mr. Sebire during taking this deposition under Rule 71. I see a nodding
18 by the Defence. I think there is no additional problem with this.
19 Then I have numerous additional points on the agenda. And before
20 starting, may I ask the Prosecution if there should be any additional
21 document to be provided today, it should be done during the next 90
22 minutes. If there should be any motion, please do it orally. This goes
23 to both parties. As to the fact that we can't do this during the
24 application of Rule 71 because this is limited to hear the witnesses only.
25 The intention is to discuss how to proceed in the framework of a
1 Status Conference, and a Status Conference -- the next Status Conference
2 in this case is hereby scheduled for Tuesday immediately following the
3 taking of a deposition with respect to the witness of Monday and Tuesday.
4 And if necessary, to proceed with this Status Conference by Wednesday
5 morning. And this will be then the appropriate place to discuss issues as
6 already announced by the Prosecution whether or not it is helpful to have
7 deliberations. I'll come back to this later.
8 Next point: I received a letter by attorney at law Vojislav
9 Dimitrijevic, counsel of Mr. Mrdja, resulting in the sentence that counsel
10 decided to advise Mr. Mrdja not to testify in this moment voluntarily in
11 the case of Mr. Stakic because it can hurt his own Defence. In the
12 conversation with client, he fully accepted my advice. May I ask the
13 usher to distribute copies of this letter to the parties and to the
14 registry. This will be, then, Document J12.
15 It was not without surprise that we received a motion by the
16 Prosecution for Rule 94, judicial notice. Are there any additional
17 comments on this motion by the representative of the OTP?
18 MR. KOUMJIAN: Just to explain, if Your Honour -- apparently Your
19 Honour was surprised, this is part of the indictment for which no
20 witnesses were presented. I don't know if it would be proper for me to
21 tell you the reasons why no witnesses were presented because I think that
22 would probably be outside the evidence. But we believe it's a litigated
23 issue in the Tadic decision, and since we are unable to present evidence
24 in this case on it, we believe it has been fully litigated as far as the
25 fact that that massacre took place, or those killings took place, who the
1 perpetrators were, and findings were made as to the motivation for the
2 killings. We think that it's appropriate under Rule 94 to take judicial
4 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. May I ask for observations by the
6 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. This was subject to lengthy
7 discussions before the beginning of this trial. And already at that time,
8 we objected to any facts established in the Tadic case because Mr. Tadic
9 defended himself by alibi, and he didn't oppose any fact. So we think
10 that in that procedure, it wasn't established that something has been done
11 or not because the other side, the Defence, didn't object on any factual
12 ground of the indictment.
13 And we think today, as we thought at that time, that the
14 Prosecution has to establish all factual grounds for the indictment during
15 the Court proceedings in this case. So we think that this motion should
16 be rejected.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I recall the former objections by the Defence.
18 And may I first ask the Prosecution why witnesses for these alleged facts
19 were not presented? And secondly, whether it would not be mandatory for
20 reasons of judicial economy to drop - I mentioned this earlier - to drop
21 those parts in the indictment where no evidence has been found because for
22 whatever reasons, no evidence was available. We are aware of the problems
23 of both problems to bring witnesses to The Hague.
24 But nevertheless, it seems for me mandatory to take into account
25 the costs of the proceedings and to take into account the right of the
1 accused, which no doubt would be limited by taking judicial notice,
2 whether or not it would be appropriate to drop these parts because I
3 can't, and I discussed it already in the past with my two colleagues, it
4 seems to be not at all relevant for the outcome of this case.
5 So therefore, I think it's mandatory for all of us to try to
6 streamline the case and to avoid additional extremely problematic
7 battlefields in these proceedings.
8 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, I think that when the drafters of the
9 rules drafted Rule 94, it was exactly Your Honours' concerns that they
10 were balancing the rights of the accused and judicial economy. It's for
11 that purpose that we have a rule that says we don't have to re-litigate
12 the same issues in different cases. And also require the same witnesses
13 to come back and testify over and over again.
14 Of all the allegations in our indictment, we've only asked the
15 Court to take judicial notice of this one particular allegation for which,
16 since Your Honour asked, we were unable to obtain witnesses who were
17 willing to come back to The Hague and testify again. I don't think it's
18 unfair to the accused if the Court finds this issue was litigated. My
19 understanding - and to be honest, Ms. Sutherland is much more familiar
20 with the Tadic case than I am - was that Mr. Tadic did contest some of the
21 factual findings. It wasn't just an alibi defence. And the Court in that
22 case had to find, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the killings took place
23 and that they were connected to this joint criminal enterprise which is
24 discussed in the paragraphs quoted in our motion.
25 As far as Your Honours' suggestion that we drop allegation that is
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 we are unable to prove, we completely agree with you. At the end of our
2 case, if we are unable to present evidence in any way about an allegation
3 we will drop it. But when the rules provide for means of proof which Rule
4 94 does, we suggest it's exactly this situation that Rule 94 was created
5 for. We don't think it's against either the rights of the accused, nor is
6 it -- nor does it violate the goal of judicial economy to ask the Court to
7 take judicial notice; rather, it's precisely for judicial economy that we
8 are asking that notice be taken.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: On the other hand, I think in this case, we saw
10 that on the initiative of the accused himself or on the initiative of
11 counsel, we came to an agreement on the admission under Rule 92 bis which
12 really served the purposes of judicial economy. And I should like to know
13 why for this special event we're expected to take judicial notice there is
14 no testimony under 92 bis available.
15 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, all I can tell you is what I was told,
16 is that the witnesses were not available. I would have to inquire further
17 to know whether or not they were asked if they would be willing to present
18 their evidence by way of Rule 92 bis, which requires them to indicate that
19 they would be willing to come for cross-examination. I can check and see
20 if we do have any notations about that.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I would invite the parties - we have time enough
22 during the following days - to discuss this issue. And whether or not the
23 parties can maybe agree to work under Rule 92 bis, and maybe
24 cross-examination then be not necessary. But let us know as soon as
25 possible, please, in writing in order that a decision can be prepared as
1 soon as possible because the proceedings should not be delayed by these
2 additional exercises.
3 This brings me to another point: We are proceeding and coming
4 close to the end of the Prosecution case. In order to allow the Defence
5 to study in a responsible way to the incoming documents and motions, we
6 hereby decide that no new document be presented later than Friday, 20th of
7 September, 2002, by the end of the working day, save leave is granted by
8 the Trial Chamber to do so because good cause is shown.
9 The same is true for motions by both parties.
10 May I then ask the parties whether or not they conferred already
11 on the question, when would be the most appropriate point in time to have
12 the pre-Defence conference?
13 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. I discussed it with my learned
14 friend, and we agree that it would be the best if we have that Status
15 Conference on the 8th of November.
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: This is agreed by the OTP?
17 MR. KOUMJIAN: Yes, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Then the pre-Defence conference is hereby
19 scheduled for the 8th of November. But nevertheless, the Chamber would
20 appreciate if the other party and the Bench could be notified beforehand
21 on the envisaged number of witnesses or special problems related to
22 translation and so on in order to facilitate the proceedings and to assist
23 the Defence where necessary.
24 MR. KOUMJIAN: Yes, thank you. Your Honour, we would be
25 requesting, although we agree to the 8th of November, that we receive some
1 notice before that - I can discuss it with counsel - of the first
2 witnesses for the Defence so we can begin to prepare.
3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I don't want to work with deadlines already
4 now. I think the message is clear, and we are aware of the problems the
5 Defence has in this case with the preparation and summoning of witnesses
6 and bringing them to The Hague. But as mentioned, let us know about all
7 the problems as soon as possible. As we have seen during the last days,
8 there will be always a way of assistance, and I am grateful to know that
9 both parties have all the assistance by the State of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
10 In this case, the Government of the entity of Republika Srpska acting
11 through the Government of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
12 May I then ask, what about documents? Yesterday I learned that
13 some best originals were available, but unfortunately it was not possible
14 for the Judges to see these documents. Could they please be presented. I
15 take it that the Defence has seen the documents. Thank you. Do you want
16 to make any observations on these documents?
17 MR. LUKIC: Not at this moment, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask in the meantime, Madam Registrar, to
19 check whether or not Document S308 or 18 was not yet admitted into
21 It was Exhibit Number S308 where the Defence reserved the right to
22 object because the best possible original was not available. It is now
23 available. May I please hear your comments on this document. May the
24 usher please show this document once more to the Defence, 308.
25 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour, we object on the basis of
1 authenticity. There is no visible signature of anybody on that document.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. For reasons given on similar
3 occasions in the past, this document is now admitted into evidence as
4 S308. But it should -- it remains open to source this document, S308.
5 Has this led to any result already?
6 MR. KOUMJIAN: These were documents seized in October of 2000 at
7 the Prijedor health centre.
8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May we then come to the Prosecution's submission
9 of statement of expert witness pursuant to Rule 94 bis. Characteristics
10 of a corpus of documents associated with the name of Milomir Stakic
11 prepared by Andrew R. Corin. First, in order not to make a mistake, may I
12 ask Madam Registrar to tell me whether this document has already been
13 admitted into evidence for the purposes that we know on the transcript
14 what we are discussing.
15 It has not been admitted? What would be, then, the next following
16 exhibit number?
17 THE REGISTRAR: It has been admitted, Your Honour, as S1 -- S295.
18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: S295. And then the problem of my -- the issue
19 of my concern, the attachment to this report as follows would be S295-1.
21 THE REGISTRAR: S295-1, yes, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Once again, we have the problem before us that
23 we have numerous documents where we have an exhibit number. We have
24 numerous documents where we have 65 ter numbers. But I think even in the
25 majority of documents used for the purposes of this expertise or
1 compilation, whatever we want to call it, there is neither a 65 ter number
2 nor an exhibit number. How shall we resolve this problem? May I hear
3 comments by the Prosecution. If you have a look on S295-1.
4 MR. KOUMJIAN: I'm sorry, we didn't bring our copy with us today.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May the usher please provide the Prosecutor with
6 my copy.
7 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, I'll have to actually confer with
8 Mr. Corin. I believe that most of the ones that Your Honour is referring
9 to are -- Mr. Corin has simply cited the Official Gazette number for
10 those. So he went through the Gazette and cited those numbers, and those
11 Gazettes themselves are in evidence. He simply cited the decision number
12 in the Official Gazette.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So no doubt, it would be of assistance for us if
14 we would have in the -- an updated table or attachment including the
15 exhibit numbers of these Official Gazettes.
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: Actually, we're looking for someone right now to
17 help complete part of the review of the other spreadsheet, and we're
18 having trouble finding enough people to do that. But we'll try to do
19 that. But I think these Official Gazettes will all just have an exhibit
20 number. Each Gazette had only one exhibit number.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Right. But then we can see where it stems from,
22 and immediately, yes, try to find out whether we can follow the inferences
23 drawn by Mr. Corin or not.
24 Please, Mr. Lukic.
25 MR. LUKIC: My learned friend was actually looking only at the
1 table, but there are also numbers incorporated inside the text of the
2 report which are also sometimes ERN numbers or 65 ter numbers. So if
3 possible, to have all those numbers numbered according to S numbers; and
4 another issue regarding the same document is that we are still waiting for
5 the translation.
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: No doubt, it was already mentioned that the
7 B/C/S -- the translation into B/C/S has priority, and then as soon as
8 possible, please, the French translation.
9 MR. LUKIC: Another, if possible, to have those S numbers
10 incorporated into a B/C/S translation as well, please.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I know this is difficult, but I tried myself in
12 part to understand this, and it would be extremely helpful that the --
13 also the accused, with the limited facilities in the Detention Unit, has
14 access to the content of this document that this be provided.
15 As we discussed earlier, we want to discuss this, maybe even
16 cross-examine Mr. Corin, not before we have this translation, and maybe
17 for the first access to this report, it should be enough to have this
18 attachment, this table, available. And reading together this report with
19 the table, on the other hand, it facilitates the access. And therefore, I
20 would ask, if possible, to do this exercise as soon as possible.
21 MR. KOUMJIAN: Just regarding the B/C/S translation, all these
22 numbers were put in by Ms. Karper actually after she received the report
23 from Mr. Corin who began this task before most of our exhibit numbers were
24 given. The versions that Your Honours and Defense counsel have, the last
25 version, did not include the S numbers from List 7. So on some of the
1 documents it has been changed.
2 But on the other hand the translation unit was given the document
3 to begin work as soon as possible. So I don't know that it's possible
4 to -- they have a they have already begun. Hopefully they are well into
5 that translation
6 MR. LUKIC: If possible, at least to get this translation in an
7 electronic version so we can change the numbers afterwards.
8 MR. KOUMJIAN: I don't think that would be a problem.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: As mentioned, if possible, if only in this
10 attachment the exhibit numbers can be provided, also those from List 7.
11 And as regards the Official Gazettes -- Official Gazette.
12 Please recall that we requested earlier the maybe last number
13 before the new numeration of Official Gazettes in Prijedor, the last
14 number of the Official Gazette before the 30th of April, 1992. Evidently,
15 according to page - what is it - page 4 of this report, the Official
16 Gazettes are available in the OTP. And only the series from 1991 is
17 probably not complete. Footnote 1, page 4.
18 MR. KOUMJIAN: I'm not quite clear on the request. I believe
19 Mr. Corin's report, as Your Honour stated, indicated that no Gazette was
20 published by the elected assembly of Prijedor for 1992, but there was a
21 Gazette for 1991. Does Your Honour want the last issue from 1991 of the
22 Prijedor Municipal Assembly Gazette?
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: The last issue of the Official Gazette before
24 number 1, I think it was May 1992, wasn't it?
25 MR. KOUMJIAN: That was Number 1 of the Serbian Municipality of
1 Prijedor, yes.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Right. And the one from the issue before this
3 issue just in order to compare who were the editors and who was
4 responsible for these documents and additional questions. Therefore, it
5 would be of assistance for the parties and the Bench to have this
7 Any further comments with respect to Exhibit Number 295? This is
8 not the case.
9 I have once again to address the questions we had already
10 earlier. What about colour copies of S242? That's okay. I just heard
11 it's okay. May I ask the registry, are there any decisions open on the
12 admission of evidence save S217, which on purpose has been left open?
13 THE REGISTRAR: Not on the admission itself, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please recall the remaining points.
15 THE REGISTRAR: We still need an updated index for the S210.
16 Also, the problems mentioned on Monday regarding S227B, S157-1, S151-1,
17 and S254.
18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
19 May I then ask, are there any problems related to documents or to
20 motions to be discussed? Please.
21 MR. KOUMJIAN: Not a problem, but perhaps a solution. Your
22 Honours, we had asked for the translation of the Bosnian law. In the
23 translation that we had, it had used the word "administrative law," but I
24 see that in this new translation, official translation, it's called "the
25 law on noncontentious procedure." I ask that that be distributed.
1 Counsel I don't think has seen it
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Could the usher please distribute.
3 MR. KOUMJIAN: This is the law dealing with declarations of death.
4 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: One copy to the Defence, please.
5 MR. KOUMJIAN: And just to explain, I asked that the first few
6 pages of the book be translated also, so the inside pages are translated
7 in the first three pages of the translation.
8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Any spontaneous observations by the Defence?
9 MR. LUKIC: I'm not a linguistic expert, but this translation I
10 see -- I can see as proper one, because the other one was the title of a
11 completely different law. So I didn't have time to go through the
12 articles, but I browsed through the articles the last time, and I think
13 that they are the proper ones.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you for this. And I take it that this is
15 tendered as an exhibit? May I have the next exhibit number, please.
16 THE REGISTRAR: S327, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Objections?
18 MR. LUKIC: If Your Honour could give me some time so I have to
19 check whether these articles are from the right law.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: No doubt, admission into evidence doesn't mean
21 that it cannot be withdrawn on the basis of any objections in the future.
22 MR. LUKIC: Then no objection, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. Admitted into evidence under S327.
24 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, just regarding that, we discussed in
25 Chambers that my research was that this is the law that is still on the
1 books in Bosnia. I'm not asking for counsel -- for an answer now, but we
2 discussed whether it would be necessary to have a 92 bis statement taken
3 next week. I've cancelled that for the moment at least, that mission. So
4 if counsel does have an objection or disputes that this is the law on the
5 books now, perhaps he can inform us and we would have to provide further
6 evidence on that.
7 MR. LUKIC: I didn't object, so I think that it wouldn't be
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
10 Any additional solutions by the Prosecutor to be offered?
11 MR. KOUMJIAN: No. We do have a couple more exhibits. If they
12 don't arrive momentarily, then we will present them in the next few days.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: There are still some minutes left, and we still
14 have to discuss the schedule of the next days. Maybe they arrive in the
16 So for clarification, there is no hearing tomorrow, Thursday, 12
17 September. There's no hearing on Friday, 13 September, 2002. There's no
18 hearing but a taking of deposition under Rule 71 as regards Witness
19 Vulliamy on Monday, 16 September, 2002, 9.30 to 13.00, and 14.30 to 16.00
20 hours. We proceed with this taking of deposition on Tuesday, 17th
21 September, 2002, from 9.30 to 13.00, and from 14.30 to 16.00 hours.
22 Another deposition will be taken on Wednesday, 18th September,
23 2002, with respect to Witness Dusan Baltic, from 9.30 to 13.00, and from
24 14.30 to 16.00 hours. In case it is necessary to continue this deposition
25 taking, this will take place on Thursday, 19th September, 2002, 9.30 to
1 13.00 hours, and 14.30 to 16.00 hours.
2 As mentioned before, there will be a Status Conference immediately
3 following the deposition taking on Tuesday, 17th September, 2002,
4 hopefully within the time frame I already told you. We'll say that we can
5 conclude this Status Conference by 4.00 in the afternoon.
6 Friday, 20 September, there will be no court as to the fact that
7 there is court maintenance. And let us all hope that court maintenance
8 will not, once again, lead to a court breakdown as it was in Courtroom III
9 in the beginning of this week.
10 Then, of course, we have to leave the following days open: The
11 entire week starting with Monday, 23 September, until Friday, 27
12 September, including Tuesday 24 September, 2002, there was scheduled a
13 hearing in another meeting but cancelled. This entire week will be
14 available for additional, if necessary, taking of depositions or we can
15 continue as scheduled from 9.00 to 13.45 hours with the hearing. So the
16 entire week is for the -- is reserved for either deposition taking,
17 hearing, or then as scheduled, deliberations in order to proceed as soon
18 as possible and to facilitate and abbreviate the motion, the response, and
19 the decision on the motion on acquittal. Here, we can't fix the dates for
20 this week. Please understand.
21 May I ask, any further observations by one of the parties or by
22 the accused himself? This is not the case. This concludes today's
23 hearing, the 71st day of the hearing in this case. And let us all hope
24 that we can continue with the hearing as such as soon as possible. Thank
1 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
2 at 3.55 p.m., to be reconvened on
3 Monday, the 16th day of September,
4 2002, at 9.30 a.m.