1 Wednesday, 1 February 2012
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone.
7 Madam Registrar, would you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours.
9 This is case IT-03-69-T, the Prosecutor versus Jovica Stanisic
10 and Franko Simatovic.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
12 Good morning, Mr. Draca. Before we continue, I'd like to remind
13 you that you're still bound by the solemn declaration you've given
14 yesterday that you'll speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but
15 the truth.
16 Mr. Petrovic will now continue his examination.
17 Mr. Petrovic.
18 MR. FARR: Your Honour, I apologise for interrupting. Before we
19 resume, I notice that the witness still has on the desk in front of him
20 the documents that were provided by the Stanisic Defence yesterday. I
21 wonder if those could be recovered until they're used by the
22 Stanisic Defence.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
24 Any problem with the sound? Oh, it's not plugged in.
25 Good morning, again, Mr. Draca.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I should have verified whether you could hear
3 me, but since you're now plugged in, I would like to remind you again
4 that you're still bound by the solemn declaration you've given yesterday.
5 WITNESS: ACO DRACA [Resumed]
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 JUDGE ORIE: Could -- Madam Usher, could you retrieve the
8 documents that were given yesterday to Mr. Draca and that they be
9 returned to the Stanisic Defence.
10 Mr. Petrovic will now continue his examination-in-chief.
11 Please proceed, Mr. Petrovic.
12 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Examination by Mr. Petrovic: [Continued]
14 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Draca.
15 A. Good morning.
16 Q. Yesterday we were discussing what knowledge you have, and based
17 on what, of the forces that took part in the attack on Skabrnja. You
18 said that you had knowledge of it, and you told us what the basis of your
19 knowledge was.
20 Can you now tell us, Which were the forces participating in the
21 attack, and under whose command were they?
22 A. It was the 180th Motorised Brigade from Benkovac, reinforced with
23 one company of the TO Benkovac, and was subordinated to the brigade
24 command which was under the command of the Yugoslav People's Army.
25 Q. Can we look at the document we looked at yesterday, 2D198.2.
1 I'd like us to look at this report from the command of the
2 180th Motorised Brigade of -- for the 18th of November. Item 3. It
4 "There were no events out of the ordinary."
5 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Now Their Honours have the
6 relevant portion before them.
7 Q. Can you tell us, What were deemed to be unusual incidents in the
8 reports of this sort?
9 A. I'm not quite sure how the army would regard what unusual
10 incidents were, but, in any case, there were such incidents on that date,
11 so that's why I'm surprised by this item.
12 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we asked a couple of
13 questions about this document yesterday, and I'd like it to be admitted
14 as a Defence exhibit unless are objections from my learned friends.
15 MR. FARR: Your Honour, no objection to authenticity or
16 relevance. But, once again, there are some translation issues. There
17 are handwritten names on the first page that are not translated, and the
18 receipt stamp on the second page is not translated.
19 So we would ask that the document be marked for identification
20 pending resolution of those issues.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Petrovic.
22 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the translation will
23 be completed, and we'd like it to be marked for identification up to that
25 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar, the number would be ...
1 THE REGISTRAR: Document 2D198.2 will receive number D675,
2 Your Honours.
3 JUDGE ORIE: And is marked for identification.
4 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Mr. Draca, you mentioned that there were unusual incidents on
6 that day. Can you tell us what exactly you are referring to?
7 A. I'm referring to a large number of civilians were killed on that
9 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I'd like us to look at exhibit --
10 or, rather, 65 ter document, 5596; page 375 in B/C/S and 374 in English.
11 We're waiting for the English version for the Chamber.
12 Q. Mr. Witness, these are entries from the notebook of Ratko Mladic
13 made for the day of 22nd November, entitled "tasks and problems."
14 Under "problems," and item 5, it reads:
15 "Looting and burning, (Colonel Tolimir)."
16 Do you know why the name of Colonel Tolimir is mentioned in
17 connection with looting and burning? Would you have an explanation for
19 A. At that point in time, Colonel Tolimir was the chief of security
20 of the corps stationed in Knin. In other words, he was charged with all
21 the units, including the 180th Motorised Brigade in Benkovac.
22 Q. To the best of your knowledge, what is the scope of duties of a
23 chief of security within a corps?
24 A. Counter-intelligence, protection of units, and protection of all
25 manner of crime in combat, including looting and murder of civilians,
1 torching, destruction, and such-like.
2 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I'd like us to look at 65 ter
3 document 5597. Again, Mladic's diary; page 42 in B/C/S and of the
4 English translation.
5 We're waiting for the English.
6 Q. Mr. Witness, apparently Mladic made note of his exchange with the
7 commander of the 180th Brigade, and in the middle of the page it reads:
8 "46 members of the ZNG and civilians were killed in Skabrnja. In
9 Skabrnja, even grannies fired from hunting rifles on the army."
10 This is what Mladic noted from what he was told by the commander
11 of the 180th Brigade. And then it reads:
12 "My position -- "
13 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Can we have the bottom of the page
14 for Their Honours as well as in the original for the witness.
15 Q. "My position," under the second bullet appointed, "if the ZOS and
16 norms of MRP are violated in Skabrnja, instigate proceedings."
17 Mr. Witness, can you explain to us what these abbreviation stand
18 for, namely ZOS and MRP, if you know?
19 A. I do know. These are the usual abbreviations. This is the
20 Law on the Armed Forces and International -- Provisions of International
21 Laws of War.
22 Q. Mr. Witness, Mladic noted down his position there. He says:
23 "If the -- these laws were violated, then instigate proceedings."
24 Do you know if any proceedings were instigated as a follow-up on
25 the events in Skabrnja? And if you do know that, can you tell us what
1 the basis of your knowledge is?
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Farr.
3 MR. FARR: Your Honour, I -- first of all, the objection to
4 foundation. I think the foundations needs to be established before the
5 question is asked. But more generally, I object to the approach that's
6 being taken, where the witness is essentially shown that Mladic has said
7 that "I think there should be an investigation," and then asked whether
8 he knows of any investigation.
9 I think that that's leading. And he should be asked what his
10 knowledge of that is before he's shown these kinds of excerpts.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Petrovic, would you please try to elicit first
12 from the witness what he knows. And if need be, then to put the diaries
13 to him.
15 Apart from that -- [Overlapping speakers] ...
16 MR. FARR: And foundation with respect to this particular issue.
17 How does this witness know anything about a JNA investigation? He's not
18 a -- he's not a JNA officer. He may well have knowledge, but that ought
19 to be established in advance.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
21 Mr. Petrovic.
22 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, that's precisely what
23 I was about to ask the witness, if he had knowledge of it, and, if so,
24 where does that knowledge come from.
25 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... that is a
1 response to the part which asks for foundation, but it's not a response
2 for the sequence of questions; that is, first to elicit from the witness,
3 without showing him the documents, what he knows, and only then to put
4 the documents to the witness.
5 Mr. Farr when you're quoting, you did it twice, it was not about
6 investigations but about prosecutions.
7 MR. FARR: Apologies, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
9 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
10 I thought that the witness did say that he was aware of unusual
11 incidents and the killings of civilians, and I believe that to be
12 foundation enough. But I will proceed.
13 JUDGE ORIE: It's not only what happened but also the position
14 taken by Mr. Mladic.
15 Please proceed.
16 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. Witness, did you at a certain point learn that an
18 investigation was launched as a follow-up on these events? And if so,
19 who did you learn it from?
20 A. I came to know about it because Major Branislav Ristic, the chief
21 of security of the 180th Motorised Brigade, asked for a formal meeting
22 with me and as well as with the chief of public security in Benkovac with
23 a view to identifying the perpetrators of these events, and he stated
24 that there was looting and torching as well.
25 Q. Witness, do you know if an on-site investigation was conducted in
1 Skabrnja following the events in question?
2 A. There was no on-site investigation carried out in Skabrnja
3 itself, save for the fact that the military police company, which was
4 charged with sanitizing the area, made a list of victims and a
5 description of the area where their bodies were retrieved.
6 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Can we look at P1211.
7 THE INTERPRETER: And can the speakers please make a pause
8 between question and answer.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Draca, you are invited to make a pause before
10 you answer the question, because otherwise the interpreters cannot follow
12 Please proceed.
13 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Have a look at this document, witness, please.
15 It was made by the authorised military police official. And if
16 we look at page 2, we will see that he signed it. That was
17 Lieutenant Ernest Radjen.
18 The document contains a list of the locations where the bodies of
19 those killed were retrieved, were recovered.
20 Can you tell us, if you know, why the -- why a military police
21 authorised official would be noting down the locations where the bodies
22 of these people were found rather than this being done by members of some
23 other organs or units?
24 A. That is because this is under the jurisdiction of the
25 180th Brigade combat zone and absolutely no other service could have or
1 did have any presence during the clearing of the terrain and any other
2 similar activities.
3 Q. And public security or the state security from Benkovac, was it
4 under their jurisdiction to conduct an investigation in the Skabrnja
6 A. No.
7 Q. Are you able to tell us why you think that neither the state nor
8 the public security service were authorised to conduct these
10 A. Simply because that was the Law on the Armed Forces: Wherever
11 combat takes place, that is the area of responsibility of a certain
12 brigade, and no civilian organ has right of access unless it is invited
13 by the authorised command. Which did not occur in this case.
14 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we just move
15 into private session for a brief period, and I will explain why, if you
16 allow me.
17 JUDGE ORIE: We move into private session.
18 [Private session]
11 Page 16754 redacted. Private session.
22 [Open session]
23 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
25 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we now please
1 look at 65 ter 5597, page 43. And this is the same page in the B/C/S and
2 the English version.
3 Q. Witness, this is also an excerpt from Mladic's diary. Mladic is
4 noting down here a meeting with the commander. And at the bottom of this
5 page, it states:
6 "Chief of Staff of the 180th Brigade must not lead the operations
7 on his own."
8 And then it says:
9 "The corps command has made a mistake when it ordered an attack
10 on Skabrnja and Nadin."
11 Witness, sir, do you know why this attack on Skabrnja and Nadin
12 was considered to have been a mistake?
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Farr.
14 MR. FARR: Your Honour --
15 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I will skip this
16 question. I will move to the next one. It's not a problem.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So the appropriate way is: Do you know
18 what -- whether Mr. Mladic ever took any position in relation to -- to
19 the question whether the attack on Nadin and Skabrnja was -- was right or
20 wrong? And then the witness can answer that. And only then -- it's not
21 to ask the witness to read the diary and then to ask him what he knows
22 about the position of Mr. Mladic.
23 So we move on to the next question.
24 Please proceed.
25 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, that is clear. I'm
1 just trying to save time because I have a lot of questions and a little
2 time. So I'm just trying to squeeze in as much as possible. This is the
3 only thing. But of course I understand the instructions from
4 Your Honour.
5 Q. Witness, sir, do you know if any specialized assault unit took
6 place in the events in Skabrnja?
7 A. Yes. It's a small unit, an assault unit of the 63rd Brigade from
8 Nis, comprising of some 10 to 15 fighters.
9 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We did not get the full
10 name of the unit.
11 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. And where --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness repeat the full name of the unit.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was the 63rd Airborne Unit from
15 Nis, which at that time was at the Zemunik airport in order to secure the
16 airport. But ten of its men took part in the Skabrnja action by landing
17 at the hill -- at a hill. They did not take actual part in the actions,
18 but they were seen.
19 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Are you able to tell us who led this group of soldiers; and are
21 you able to tell us how these people were dressed, how these soldiers
22 were dressed?
23 A. No, I don't know.
24 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... Mr. Farr.
25 MR. FARR: Your Honour, I was going to object to foundation, but
1 the question's been answered.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
3 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think that the
4 complete answer was not translated.
5 Q. Witness, did you have an opportunity to personally see this unit,
6 this assault unit from Nis, those days in the area of Zadar and Benkovac?
7 Did you personally see them?
8 A. Yes, I did personally see them.
9 Q. And how were they dressed? What sort of equipment did they? And
10 what did they have on their heads?
11 A. Well, they were characteristics -- characteristic looking,
12 because before that time we didn't see such sophisticated equipment.
13 They had NATO pattern camouflage uniforms and they had red caps.
14 Q. And this 63rd Parachute Brigade, are you aware of the
15 establishment of that unit? Where does it belong to by establishment?
16 A. [No interpretation]
17 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the answer.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Since you didn't make a pause, the interpreter
19 didn't hear the answer. Could you please repeat the answer. And make a
20 pause in the future.
21 The question was: "Where does it belong to by establishment?"
22 And your answer was ...
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The 63rd Parachute Brigade
24 belonged -- or it was, rather, part of the Yugoslav People's Army.
25 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. Witness, sir, at some point did you learn about any events in
2 Nadin on the 18th or the 19th of November, 1991? And if you did, how did
3 you learn about it?
4 A. The village Nadin is right next to the village of Skabrnja.
5 Later I found out, also by speaking with the military security chief,
6 that there were some civilian casualties in Nadin as well, but in a
7 different way. This did not occur in combat. The National Guard Corps
8 and the police of Republic of Croatia withdrew from Nadin because of the
9 action, so that the army entered Nadin practically without a fight.
10 Later, on the night of the 19th and the 20th, there were crimes
11 against civilians, but not in action but exclusively for the purpose of
12 looting. And then the next day, military security asked public security
13 for its help in order to conduct the investigation, to take photographs,
14 photographs of boot sole marks, because these were not casualties from
15 combat, but casualties as a result of a criminal action.
16 Q. Witness, you mentioned the head of military security. Could you
17 please tell us what the name of that person is?
18 A. Well, it's the same person that I already mentioned before. It
19 was Major Branislav Ristic.
20 Q. And do you know if there was an investigation about this
21 incident; and who conducted the investigation?
22 A. Yes, there was an investigation. Military security of the
23 180th Motorised Brigade conducted the investigation.
24 Q. You mentioned that public security took part in the
25 investigation. Could you please tell us, if you know, who asked them to
1 take part, and why?
2 A. The military security command asked the crime technicians from
3 the Benkovac SUP to come in order to take photographs and photograph the
4 papillary lines and similar, because the military organs did not have any
5 crime technicians at that point in time.
6 Q. You mentioned that photographs were taken. Were they -- was the
7 crime scene photographed; and what happened to that set of photographs?
8 A. Yes, it was made. And it was handed over to the
9 180th Motorised Brigade team.
10 Q. The investigation by the military organs, did it yield any
11 results? Did it find out who the perpetrators of this crime were?
12 A. There were no results. And the perpetrators were never
13 discovered, as far as I know.
14 And this both applies to Skabrnja and Nadin.
15 Q. Witness, do you know of any events in the village of Bruska on
16 the 21st of December, 1991; and if you do, can you please tell us how you
17 found out about it?
18 A. Yes, I know about this event very well.
19 Q. Can you please tell us how you found out that something happened
20 in the village of Bruska.
21 A. In the evening that day, a relative of mine came to see me. He
22 has the same surname as I do. And he informed me that he had heard that
23 a large number of civilians were killed in the village of Bruska, among
24 whom was his own brother, who, of course, is another relative of mine.
25 Since it was night and since it wasn't possible to travel by car
1 at that time, we waited for dawn, and together we went with the police
2 units from the Benkovac SUP who had already been informed about the event
3 as well. They went to conduct an investigation. The investigation judge
4 came. I went with them too. And we found nine Croats who had been
5 killed. And we found a man there, Svetozar Draca, who was that relative
6 of mine. So, all in all, a total of ten civilians were killed that day
7 in the village of Bruska.
8 Q. Are you able to tell us if at this time in Bruska there was any
9 combat at this time that we're talking about?
10 A. No. This was deep within the territory.
11 Q. You said that a unit of the Benkovac SUP attended the scene. Can
12 you tell us, Whose responsibility is it under those circumstances to
13 establish whether elements of a crime can be found? Under whose
14 jurisdiction is that?
15 A. Under the jurisdiction of civilian bodies, i.e., police.
16 Q. Can you tell us, Which branch of the civilian police is charged
17 with these issues?
18 A. Public security. This was treated as crime.
19 Q. You said that an investigating judge attended the scene as well.
20 Do you know the person?
21 A. I think it was Sava Strbac, an investigating judge of the
22 municipal court in Benkovac.
23 Q. In addition to members of the public security branch in Benkovac,
24 were there any other individuals taking part in the scene-of-crime
25 examination and subsequent investigation into this case?
1 A. No. There were no other people involved. However, because of
2 the impact of this event, there were various officers present there. And
3 after all, there were also us present, those from state security, because
4 we thought it was a grave crime.
5 I'm sorry, there were also representatives of the Benkovac
6 municipality, i.e., the civilian government. They wanted to see if there
7 were any ways in which they could assist the survivors.
8 Q. Can you tell us what was the response and the reaction of
9 civilian authorities to this event?
10 A. While I was still at the crime scene, a courier, or a driver,
11 from Knin approached me and told me that Dusan Orlovic wanted to see me
12 as soon as possible. I went to Knin, and I found Milan Martic in
13 Orlovic's office. They asked me to brief them on the event, which I did.
14 Martic's reaction was very strong. He said that such incidents needed to
15 be avoided at all costs. He was wondering what to do with the remaining
16 villagers of Bruska. He decided that I should be charged with securing
17 the village in the days and nights to come, because, in his view, the
18 chief of public security failed in his job, because it was his obligation
19 to make sure that every village had a patrol assigned to it to -- to tour
20 the village and make sure that it was safe. And, of course, he was
21 referring to the villages where there were Croat inhabitants.
22 I went back to Benkovac. And since I didn't have any military
23 units at my disposal, I organised, with the help of operatives, patrols
24 that were to guard the villagers in the subsequent days and keep the
25 survivors safe.
1 Q. You said that Martic was dissatisfied with the work of public
2 security in Benkovac.
3 Can you tell us, first of all, who was in charge of the public
4 security service in Benkovac, and what became of that person in the later
6 A. The chief of Benkovac SUP was Bosko Drazic. Martic asked for him
7 to step down after these events, and I believe that this happened perhaps
8 in March or April of 1992.
9 Q. Did Zdravko Zecevic have a role to play in these events, if you
11 A. Yes. The villagers of Bruska asked that Zecevic pay them a
12 visit. They trusted him. They knew him from before. And in fact he did
13 visit the village. It was already on the following day or the day after
14 that that the village was gathered in front of the local school. He
15 addressed them. He tried to calm them down and said that he would make
16 sure that there was a security detail there for them at all times. They
17 were very anxious and distressed, which was quite logical after such
19 There was one elderly person who spoke most of the time, and he
20 said, Well, a war could last for ten years, and however eager you may be,
21 you will not be able to keep us safe all that time. And he asked for a
22 bus to be organised to take them out.
23 Zecevic tried to dissuade them from this idea. However, at their
24 insistence he gave in, and several days later a bus was arranged that
25 took them away.
1 Q. Who arranged for a bus?
2 A. It was the Red Cross in Benkovac and the Red Cross in
3 Zadar [Realtime transcript read in error "Zagreb"]. Contacts were made
4 through military channels, and what was arranged was, well, I couldn't
5 call it an exchange, really, because nobody came from the other side, and
6 I think that some 120 inhabitants of Bruska left on these buses.
7 Q. Mr. Witness -- witness the transcript reads "Red Cross in
8 Benkovac and Red Cross in Zagreb"; is that what you said?
9 A. No, I said Zadar.
10 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Can we move into private session
11 for a brief moment, Your Honours.
12 JUDGE ORIE: We move into private session.
13 [Private session]
11 Pages 16765-16768 redacted. Private session.
17 [Open session]
18 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
20 Please proceed, Mr. Petrovic.
21 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Q. Mr. Witness, are you familiar with the situation in a place
23 called Lovinac in August and September of 1991?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Can you tell us, Where is Sveti Rok geographically situated in
1 relation to Lovinac?
2 A. At the foot of Mount Velebit on the Lika-facing slope, between
3 Gracac and Gospic.
4 Q. And what is the distance between Sveti Rok and Lovinac; and how
5 large a place is Sveti Rok, if you know?
6 A. Lovinac is a much bigger locality than Sveti Rok, and it is --
7 and, I mean, Sveti Rok so close to Lovinac that you could call it a
8 hamlet of Lovinac.
9 Q. Can you tell us, What was there in Sveti Rok?
10 A. There was a depot of the JNA, the largest of its sort in the area
11 of Lika.
12 Q. You say that you are familiar with what the situation was like in
13 Lovinac in August and September of 1991. Can you tell us the source of
14 your knowledge?
15 A. I have knowledge of it from several sources. First, from my
16 meetings with Dusan Orlovic, my superior in Knin. There was the problem
17 because the Croats had placed the depot under a blockade. They weren't
18 able to take the entire place of Lovinac, but they took the depot. I
19 don't know which JNA units were there.
20 On the other hand, I know that 180th Motorised Brigade from my
21 area, from Benkovac, sent out a reinforcement once it was decided that
22 the blockade would be lifted. The entire action was under the command of
23 one colonel, I believe his name was Trbovic. And it was within the
24 jurisdiction of the Knin Corps.
25 Q. Are you able to tell us about the 180th Brigade? You said that
1 it was involved in these activities. Do you know who from the brigade
2 took part in these activities around Lovinac? Was it a part of the
4 A. It was just a part of the brigade that included the artillery
5 unit -- section and the anti-armour section.
6 Q. And this part of the brigade, did it take part in any actions
7 regarding Lovinac?
8 A. Yes. They took part in the action to unblock Lovinac. I don't
9 know exactly the nature of the action, but I know that they were
10 subordinated to the artillery of the Drina Corps [as interpreted], which,
11 in its assessment, allocated a part of these forces.
12 Q. And do you know who led the artillery in these actions around
14 A. The artillery was led by Colonel Atif Dudakovic, who was later
15 the commander of the 5th Corps of the B&H forces Bihac. At that time he
16 was still the artillery commander of the Knin Corps.
17 Q. Witness, sir, a few lines earlier it states that this unit was
18 subordinated to the artillery of the Drina Corps. Is that what you said?
19 A. No. I said the Knin Corps.
20 Q. Witness, do you know what happened with the civilian population
21 of Lovinac during these activities?
22 A. A day or two later, I found out at a meeting with Orlovic that
23 the population had left Lovinac.
24 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we please look
25 at 65 ter 5596; Mladic's diary. Page 84 in the B/C/S and in the English
2 There is a note here by Mladic. The words of Colonel Trbovic:
3 "I repaired my GP. One battalion in Lovinac. Command of
4 Sveti Rok. I had a brandy and a coffee in Sveti Rok. One injured in the
5 eye, treated. I have no prisoners. They had Lovinac, 250, about
6 50 here. Lovinac is a ghost town."
7 Do you know why Trbovic said that Lovinac was a ghost town?
8 A. Well, that corresponds to what I said earlier about the things
9 that Orlovic informed me about, and that was the fact that the civilians,
10 the inhabitants of Lovinac, had left the town.
11 Q. Sir, a little bit before I omitted to ask you about the
12 18th of November, 1991, in Skabrnja --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Could we have English text on our screens as well.
14 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, page 84 in English
15 and in the B/C/S.
16 JUDGE ORIE: We -- [Overlapping speakers] ...
17 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Page 84 in e-court.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Petrovic, I looked at page 84 in e-court in
19 English. There I didn't find what you were referring to. At least
20 unless I missed it.
21 Then I looked at the page which is numbered 84 at the top of the
22 page, and that is page 88 in e-court. Now I see at the bottom it says
23 88. Apparently what is seen at the bottom corresponds with the ... but I
24 still have not found -- but let me have a look.
25 I haven't found it. I'm still waiting for ...
1 Now, it would also surprise me to find it here. It is -- the
2 next, on page 95, we see that the dates is the 3rd of December, and
3 apparently here we're talking about the 26th of September, which suggests
4 that we should be -- [Overlapping speakers] ...
5 MR. PETROVIC: [No interpretation]
6 JUDGE ORIE: But I leave it to you, Mr. Petrovic. If you can
7 give sufficient instructions to get it on the screen, we can look at it.
8 If not, we're unable to follow the testimony.
9 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I really don't know
10 how to help. My assistant here is opening this 65 ter 5596, page 84 in
11 e-court. That's what we have noted, but I really don't know how I can be
12 of help.
13 On our screen we have page 84, and at the top of the page it says
14 84. And in the e-court it's page 84 out of a total of 387 pages.
15 JUDGE ORIE: What I had on my screen is a total of 209 pages in
16 English, but then I may have the wrong one. Are we in the wrong
17 document, are we in the right document? That's the first question.
18 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, in B/C/S we do have
19 the right number.
20 MR. FARR: Your Honour, at the risk of creating more confusion,
21 it appears that the ERN of the document on the left, the English version,
22 in other words, that's the English version of 65 ter 5597 rather than
23 5596. At least as far as I can tell. I don't know whether that's
24 helpful or not.
25 MR. JORDASH: Perhaps I can assist.
1 MR. PETROVIC: [No interpretation]
2 MR. JORDASH: It's time for a break.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We take a break. And this is the most
4 effective assistance we could receive, Mr. Jordash.
5 We take a break and resume at a quarter to 11.00. And I may then
6 take it that the confusion has been resolved.
7 I would also like to know, then, because I -- it seems that we
8 have now the right pages on our screen, what caused the confusion. Where
9 someone may - and I'm very cautious - "may" have made a mistake.
10 We resume at quarter to 11.00.
11 --- Recess taken at 10.18 a.m.
12 --- On resuming at 10.49 a.m.
13 JUDGE ORIE: During the break I inquired in the courses of the
14 problems with getting the right portions of the Mladic diary on our
16 First of all, Mr. Petrovic, I do understand that you have done
17 what you are supposed to do, is that -- to give instructions as clearly
18 as possible. And that the problem seems to be elsewhere. The problem
19 seems to be in the way in which the Mladic diaries were uploaded.
20 I also was informed, but perhaps a matter to further discuss if
21 need be, that repeated requests by the Registry to reorganise the
22 uploading of the Mladic diaries by the OTP remained without success.
23 Which means that most likely we'll face this problem for the remainder of
24 the time at this Tribunal, and that is just unacceptable for the Chamber.
25 I am not going into the details. I told you what information I
1 had, right or wrong; but, again, right or wrong, the problem has to be
2 resolved. And it's not -- it is -- the Prosecution has uploaded them.
3 There seems to be a major problem there, at least - again, that's my
4 information - which causes all kind of problems if another party wants to
5 use them.
6 Now, an intensified effort to have this resolved together with
7 the Registry is what the Chamber expects the uploading party to do. If
8 there's any need to involve the Defence, there will be an opportunity to
9 do so. If this will not result in a solution within, well, let's say,
10 within one week from now, I -- although I do regret it, I have to rely on
11 my system that problems which are not resolved and which need to be
12 resolved where we do not want to spend too much time on it are resolved
13 in meetings with me starting at 7.00 in the morning. That is the way in
14 which I would like to handle this kind of technical problems.
15 So I'd like to receive within a week whether -- information about
16 whether the matter has been resolved. And if not, we start working. I
17 take care of coffee.
18 Mr. Petrovic, you may proceed.
19 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
20 Q. Witness, I just forgot to put one or two questions in relation to
21 the events in Skabrnja.
22 Do you know that on the -- what happened on the 18th with the
23 civilians who survived the events? Do you know what happened to them?
24 A. Yes, I know. The survivors were gathered together by the
25 military company that was in charge of clearing the terrain. They were
1 taken by bus to the Benkovac barracks where they were given some food.
2 Then they were taken to the crčche building where they were waiting to be
3 transported to Zadar, which was organised during the night or the
4 following day in the morning.
5 Q. In the transcript, it says military company. Can you tell us,
6 Which company is that?
7 A. It's the military police company.
8 Q. Thank you, witness.
9 Yesterday you said that the Krajina State Security Service was
10 disbanded in 1991, late 1991. Are you able to tell us if at some point
11 the service was formed again; who formed it; and who was at the head of
12 the service then?
13 A. Of course. It was formed again in 1992 in August.
14 Q. Are you able to tell us who formed it and who was at the head of
15 the service?
16 A. During that period I was summoned to a meeting in Knin to see the
17 then-minister of the interior, Milan Martic, and he personally told me
18 that the State Security Service was being formed again because one could
19 not work without that sector of the security system. He told me that he
20 had agreed with the political leadership of Eastern Slavonia and Baranja,
21 that he should elect the cadre for the service, and the chief of the
22 State Security Department was headed by Slobodan Pecikozic from Vukovar.
23 After a few days, Slobodan Pecikozic asked to have a meeting with
24 me. We did have that meeting. He understood that I had worked for a
25 long time in the service before that. And in agreement with Martic, he
1 offered me the post of his deputy, which I accepted. The only condition
2 was to continue to head the state security sector in Benkovac, which was
3 formed again. And this was because there was a shortage of professional
4 staff in that area.
5 So that from the end of August onwards, I was both the chief --
6 the deputy chief of the State Security Service as well as the head of the
7 Benkovac sector of that service.
8 Q. And did anybody help in this re-establishment of the service?
9 Who adopted the documents that were important for the service? How was
10 the service organised?
11 A. The only assistance came from the Government of the Republic of
12 the Serbian Krajina, which at that time was already operational. It had
13 a budget. A part of the budget was allocated, which we used to start
14 again from zero.
15 As for the personnel, there was an agreement with Minister Martic
16 to go for the most educated people this time. I proposed that we make a
17 complete classification of posts, even though we were starting from zero
18 and we didn't have enough personnel, and that's when we established the
19 administrations and all of the things needed to be done by establishment
20 in the State Security Service. On the basis of my previous experience in
21 the service, we -- we used our experiences, both on the basis of the long
22 years of my work as well as Pecikozic's work, who worked in Osijek
23 before. So Slobodan Pecikozic and I together, according to how we
24 remembered the structure of the service in peacetime, drafted a
25 classification of the posts of the administration and planned the work of
1 the administration. In the beginning, we didn't have enough staff, and
2 gradually we employed people from public security. Then we found some
3 personnel who used to work in the Republic of Croatia and which were
4 dispersed throughout different military units. And then we started to
6 JUDGE ORIE: The question was: Who formed it and who was at the
7 head of the service?
8 You would except an answer of two or three lines.
9 Now there is a problem, I see that, Mr. Petrovic; it's difficult
10 to intervene because you have to wait until the translation is ready and
11 then the witness starts explaining again.
12 If Mr. Petrovic is interested to hear all the details about how
13 it worked, he'll ask you for it.
14 Please proceed.
15 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. Mr. Witness, at this stage of the work of the Krajina DB, did the
17 service have contacts with the Republic of Serbia DB?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Can you tell us why not?
20 A. I didn't know exactly what the reasons behind the conflict
21 between Mr. Martic and the Republic of Serbia DB were, specifically with
22 Mr. Stanisic.
23 However, at the meeting where Mr. Pecikozic and I were, together
24 with Martic, we were told that we were strictly forbidden from
25 maintaining contacts with all the various sectors of the Republic of
1 Serbia SDB. I personally thought it was a very bad decision and believed
2 that we had to have some sort of communication at least at the basic
3 level of exchange of information, but he stood by his decision. In other
4 words, we were strictly forbidden from contacting anyone in the
5 Republic of Serbia SDB.
6 Q. Did there come a time when contacts with the Serbian DB were
8 A. Yes. In late January of 1993.
9 Q. Can you tell us what prompted this change? What happened at this
10 point in time?
11 A. On the 21st of January, 1993, a large offensive was launched by
12 the Croatian army on the area of Ravni Kotari, which is precisely the
13 area to the left and to the right of Benkovac. Due to numerous
14 operations, there were many civilian casualties, and yet again we were
15 faced with the same situation that we had back in 1991 where there were
16 many volunteers around.
17 I asked Martic that he allow me contact with the Republic of
18 Serbia DB in order to check the backgrounds of many of these individuals.
19 Many of them were suspected of having criminal records, and I wanted to
20 have at least that sort of communication with them. At that point,
21 Martic allowed the contact.
22 Q. You say you wanted to check the background of individuals. Which
23 sectors of the service were charged with the background checks that you
24 needed? And I'm not just referring to your DB, but to the DBs across the
25 former Yugoslavia.
1 A. Within the MUP, we contacted public security as well. In terms
2 of state security, it was the 1st Administration that was charged with
4 Q. After this improvement of relations with the Serbian DB, as you
5 put it, did you start receiving orders, directives, or instructions for
6 your work from the Serbian DB?
7 A. No. We did not receive anything of the sort, orders or
9 Q. Did the Serbian DB send you any sort of technical equipment
10 required for your line of work once the service was reactivated?
11 A. No. Neither at that point nor at any subsequent point did we
12 receive any technical equipment from the Republic of Serbia DB.
13 Q. Mr. Draca, this new DB service that was established in 1992, what
14 were its sources of finance?
15 A. The budget of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina.
16 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... Mr. Petrovic, I
17 would like to seek for better understanding, clarification of one of the
18 previous answers.
19 You said there were, as -- in 1991 there were volunteers around,
20 and you warranted to check their backgrounds. Were they around and did
21 you want to check their background for recruiting purposes or for --
22 you're nodding yes. So not for investigative purposes, but, rather, for
23 knowing whether they had a criminal background, if you wanted to recruit
24 them. Is that ...
25 I saw you nodding yes when I said "recruitment."
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So Serbian DB would provide you with
3 information about the criminal background of volunteers you would like to
4 recruit in January 1993.
5 To be recruited into what exactly?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Since by then there was already the
7 Army of the Republic of Serbian Krajina in existence, after having run
8 our checks and established that these were criminals or latent criminals,
9 we would get in touch with the military security in order to have these
10 individuals go back to their -- to the places they came from, either the
11 Republic of Serbia or Republika Srpska.
12 Unfortunately, I have to say --
13 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness repeat what he said at that
15 JUDGE ORIE: One second.
16 Again, due to the speed of your speech, could you please repeat
17 the last part of your answer.
18 You "would get in touch with the military security in order to
19 have these individuals go back to their -- to the places they came from,"
20 and then you mentioned that to be "the Republic of Serbia or the
21 Republika Srpska." But you said:
22 "Unfortunately, I have to say ..."
23 And what did you then tell us? What did you have to say?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said this: Unfortunately, most
25 of these persons did have criminal records, and we sent them back to
1 where they came from.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now, and those who did not have criminal
3 records, they came as volunteers from Republika Srpska and/or Serbia, and
4 they were recruited to be in what? In police forces? Military forces?
5 What units?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Solely the units of the Army of the
7 Republic of Serbian Krajina.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And when you say most of these persons did
9 have criminal records, you learned that from the information you received
10 from the RDB of the Republic of Serbia; is that well understood?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, you're right. And from the
12 Republic of Serbia public security service. We approached both these
14 JUDGE ORIE: And they both provided you with the information they
15 had available?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's right.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
18 Please proceed, Mr. Petrovic.
19 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
20 Q. Were you able to run checks on all the volunteers, or were there
21 cases where these checks were run, and in others they weren't?
22 A. We tried to run checks on all of them. In Knin itself there was
23 a check-point which we called the collection centre for volunteers. They
24 would report there and wait for their assignment and our decision as to
25 whether they would be admitted or not.
1 However, some of these volunteers would leave the place of their
2 own accord and join various units, and we would only find out later on
3 that such individuals were already out in the field with their units.
4 But we did try to run checks on these cases as well.
5 Q. Witness, you say that in running these checks you co-operated
6 with the Republic of Serbia Public and State Security Services. Did you
7 co-operate with any other institutions or organisations on these same
9 A. Yes. We had very busy co-operation with the State Security
10 Service of Republika Srpska and, to a much lesser extent, with the State
11 Security Service of Montenegro.
12 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... Mr. Petrovic,
13 again a clarification of one of the previous answers.
14 You'd said:
15 "Some of these volunteers would leave this place of their own
16 accord and join various units," and you would find out only later that
17 they were already out in the field.
18 That means that before you had the information, before you had
19 the responses, they already joined units. Again, units of the Army of
20 the Republika Srpska Krajina?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
22 JUDGE ORIE: So they came, you wanted to do a check on their
23 background; meanwhile, they moved to the field already and joined units
24 before you had received any answer.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's correct.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Was this all registered in an appropriate way, that
2 they reported on this day here, we asked for information, we found them
3 later in a unit A, B, or C?
4 Was there a clear registration of all that?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Official Notes were made for
6 all these cases, and everything we came to know was documented. There
7 were probably cases that we didn't know of, especially in that period
8 between -- or, rather, from late January 1993, because that was one of
9 the major battles won by both warring parties.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Now, you referred to cases. "Official Notes were
11 made for all these cases."
12 What do you mean by a case? Is that a person who presents
13 himself as a volunteer and then moves already to a unit? Or is it, a
14 case, is that an incident related to one of the volunteers?
15 What do you mean by "a case" where Official Notes were made?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Official Notes were made in all the
17 cases where an individual would leave this centre of their own will,
18 regardless of whether it was ultimately established that the person had a
19 criminal record or not. A note would be made nevertheless. As well as
20 for the individuals that we decided should be sent back.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So every movement of a person out to the field
22 without your prior consent or anyone for which it was established that he
23 had a criminal record and therefore had to be sent back.
24 Now, you would say "leave this centre." What centre were you
25 exactly referring to?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. The centre was one of the
2 barracks in Knin.
3 JUDGE ORIE: And that was a centre for volunteers to report to?
4 Or ...
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
6 JUDGE ORIE: So there was a centre in the barracks of Knin where
7 volunteers could report for being available for the armed forces of the
8 Republika Srpska Krajina?
9 THE WITNESS: [No verbal response]
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Petrovic.
11 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. Mr. Witness, who controlled the barracks you've just mentioned?
13 A. The Main Staff of the RSK army.
14 Q. You said a moment ago that in January of 1993 there were many
15 forces deployed, I think you said.
16 Can you tell us what sort of atmosphere prevailed in that period
17 in Benkovac and Knin?
18 A. At that point, the area had been declared a UN protected area.
19 In other words, it was under the protection of the UN forces, pursuant to
20 the Vance Plan.
21 According to the agreement, the Ministry of Defence and the
22 Main Staff remained in place, but we could no longer have units other
23 than the -- than police units.
24 Q. I'm sorry to interrupt you, but what I'd like to know is: When
25 this attack took place, what happened to the population? What happened
1 to the army? How was it all organised? That's what I'd like to know.
2 A. That's what I was about to say, but I needed to make this
3 introduction because 52 kilometres of surface area were covered by the
4 attack of the Croatian army, and there were only 48 policemen to cover
5 the area under the UNPA agreement. The population began retreating, and
6 many civilians were killed. This was an operation called Maslenica,
7 covering the villages of Smokovic, Zemunik, Islam Grcki, Kasic, Biljane.
8 Around 450 civilian casualties were recorded in the first ten-odd days of
9 the attack.
10 At that point in time, a large contingent of volunteers arrived.
11 All the heavy weapons were stored in the various barracks, according to
12 the international agreement, and there followed a counter-attack -- or,
13 in fact, a defence action. A counter-attack was never properly mounted,
14 but defensive positions were put together. These villages remained on
15 the Croatian-controlled side, and that's where the line of separation ran
16 all the way through to the end of the conflict.
17 Q. What I'd like to know, witness, is how it was all organised. Was
18 there a clear organisation in place, or was there general confusion?
19 What was it all like at that initial moment?
20 A. Of course there was great confusion. The Croatian forces were
21 well armed and were advancing swiftly. At that point, as deputy chief of
22 the department, I attended a number of government meetings of the Krajina
23 where, based on a plan put together by the government, we were requested
24 to provide assistance as soon as possible, and I, in fact, pleaded with
25 the units, or with the Main Staff of -- of the VRS, pleaded with them for
1 assistance but it never came. Large numbers of volunteers arrived,
2 mostly because a call to that effect was issued by the government.
3 Q. Mr. Witness, you said that this was the time when co-operation
4 was established with the Serbian DB, among others.
5 Can you tell us which lines of work were covered by this newly
6 resumed co-operation with the Serbian DB?
7 A. Well, at first, as I said a little while ago, it had to do with
8 the background checks of persons. And after a while, we also began to
9 exchange intelligence in the sense that we asked and requested they
10 should forward to us the information, if they had it, concerning the
11 intentions of the international community. We were primarily interested
12 about that because these were the UN protected areas. We were interested
13 in whether the international community would react and order the Croats
14 to return to the lines they had previously held.
15 We were very small in Krajina. We couldn't know that by
16 ourselves. And most of my dispatches had to do with this. Sometimes I
17 would ask in these memos about further movements of Croatian forces,
18 whether they intended to make more offensive operations, and so on and so
20 Q. Could you now please explain to us which lines of work these
21 were, how were they called? For checking persons' background and
22 information and so on.
23 A. Well, the 2nd Administration was in charge of intelligence. And
24 as for the other two, these were the first and the third. The first is
25 the counter-intelligence, and the third one was in charge of extremism
1 and terrorism, something like that.
2 Q. Mr. Witness, just to clarify: Which line of work was in charge
3 of checking persons' background?
4 A. I think that it was either the 1st or the 3rd Administration.
5 I'm not sure which one, but one of these two.
6 Q. Mr. Witness, did Arkan arrive in the Benkovac area at one point?
7 A. Yes, he did. As early as in the first few days after the attack.
8 Q. Do you know how Arkan arrived? Did he arrive on his own, or was
9 he sent by someone? Do you know anything about that? And if so, where
10 do you know this from?
11 MR. FARR: Foundation first, please, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now, of course, for a foundation, it should be
13 clear; foundation for what. So, to that extent ...
14 MR. FARR: How Arkan arrived. The question was: "Do you know
15 how Arkan arrived? Did he arrive on his own, or was he sent by someone?"
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, well, there are two ways. If -- either the
17 witness answer the question, or you say, Did you -- were you able -- I
18 mean, whether you start with a foundation, you have to make clear anyhow,
19 foundation for what. So to that extent, the two are always in one way or
20 another related.
21 I think Mr. Petrovic asked the question and immediately asked the
22 witness to tell us also how he knew, and that is the foundation. Whether
23 you start with the foundation or whether you give that as an explanation
24 doesn't matter that much.
25 Please proceed.
1 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
2 Q. Please answer my question, Mr. Witness.
3 A. I know exactly how he arrived because I was present myself when
4 his arrival was organised.
5 At the time, because of the situation on the ground, the
6 government session was conducted non-stop, 24 hours a day, and we spent
7 most of the time informing the minister, Martic. At some point, angry
8 that Eastern Slavonia and Baranja did not send units to help, had a long
9 argument on the telephone with the deputy defence minister, Milanovic. I
10 have forgotten his first name, but his nickname was Mrgud, and everyone
11 knew him as such. And then Mrgud promised that he would contact Arkan,
12 who had a centre in Erdut, in Slavonia, and an hour later he called
13 Martic while we were all still sitting there and informed Martic that he
14 would be sending Arkan, and Martic welcomed this eagerly.
15 And that's what happened.
16 On the next day or two days later, Arkan was already there.
17 Q. Can you tell us, How many men did Arkan bring with him once he
18 arrived? And where did these men go? Under whose command? If they
19 placed themselves under anyone's commands at all.
20 A. He stayed in Knin briefly. He contacted Martic who took him to
21 the Main Staff to see General Mile Novakovic who was at the time the
22 chief, or, rather, the commander of the Army of Republika Srpska Krajina.
23 And on the following day he continued for Benkovac. He refused to be
24 stationed in the Benkovac barracks because the conditions were not good.
25 There were too many men and volunteers quartered there already. He
1 requested, and the president of the Benkovac municipality billeted him in
2 hotel -- in the hotel Benkovac --
3 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the name of the
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He entered the hotel with his unit.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Again, you're speaking too quickly.
7 The name of the hotel, please.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise.
9 JUDGE ORIE: The name of the hotel, please, in Benkovac.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The name of the hotel is Aseria.
11 That is the old Roman name of a fortress near Benkovac.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then please continue.
13 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Mr. Witness, what happened with Arkan and his unit? Did they
15 become part of a bigger unit, did they place themselves under anyone's
16 command, or did they act independently?
17 A. No, they weren't independent. They subordinated themselves to
18 the brigade command from Benkovac. And under their command, they were
19 engaged in combat operations.
20 Q. Did you attend any meetings at the Benkovac command?
21 A. Yes, I did. I attended one or two meetings while Arkan was still
23 Q. At the meetings, did you learn who issued orders to the units
24 which were deployed in the area of Benkovac and Ravni Kotari at the time?
25 A. It was only the brigade commander, Colonel Momcilo Bogunovic.
1 But sometimes it happened that some officers disagreed, and there would
2 be a discussion, I guess that's how the army did it. But eventually he
3 would agree and he would sign his approval for all the brigades'
4 activity. And when I say "he" did that, I mean Colonel Bogunovic.
5 Q. Did anything happen to Colonel Bogunovic at any point?
6 A. Yes. On the 31st of January, I think that was the exact date, he
7 was killed while touring the units which were deployed along the front
9 Q. Can you tell us who took over the command of the brigade and the
10 units in Benkovac after his death?
11 A. After his death, in order to avoid a drop of morale, the
12 Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska sent a group of officers in
13 order to strengthen the unity of command, and it was an operative group
14 that was headed by Colonel Dragan Tanga from Knin.
15 Q. Do you know what was the position or the function performed by
16 Colonel Tanga at the Knin Corps command?
17 A. I don't know what precise function he had in the Knin Corps, but
18 I know that he was one of the top-ranking officers.
19 Q. Mr. Witness, did Captain Dragan arrive at any point?
20 A. Yes. Captain Dragan arrived several days after the beginning of
21 the attack.
22 Q. Can you tell us how you learned that he had arrived?
23 A. As I had met Captain Dragan in 1991, and he also knew me, he came
24 to look for me at my office in Knin, and they told him that I was on the
25 ground in Benkovac, so he got down there and he found me. He was alone.
1 He then told me that he was at the Main Staff and that he was given
2 carte blanche in the sense that he should establish a training centre but
3 that he should first contact the brigade command in Benkovac so that they
4 would designate the location, the number of soldiers, and so on.
5 We had a short conversation, and then he went on to the command
6 of the Benkovac Brigade.
7 Q. Do you know whether Captain Dragan was given premises where he
8 could establish this training centre?
9 A. Yes. The brigade command called the president of the
10 municipality and the chief of public security, that was Slobodan Vujko at
11 the time, and they decided to find the premises for him. It was an old
12 factory which the police used as a sort of local police station in the
13 village of Bruska. So it was up to the municipality and the police to
14 provide him with the grounds.
15 Q. The training centre which you mentioned, do you know whether it
16 was opened? Do you know whether it was independent or if it was a part
17 of some organ or institution?
18 A. Yes, it was opened. And very quickly Captain Dragan made it
19 possible to receive soldiers at this centre.
20 I went to see how the works were progressing, and we had a long
21 conversation on that occasion. He told me that the -- his problem was
22 that he didn't know who would be sent to him, what would be the
23 composition and the character of the soldiers. He said that the centre
24 was not part the Benkovac Brigade, but directly subordinated to the
25 Main Staff in Knin, and he gave it the name Alpha.
1 Q. Can you tell me whether you knew how recruits would arrive to
2 this training centre run by Captain Dragan?
3 A. Some of the recruits were sent directly by the brigade command.
4 But it also happened that some soldiers left there units on their own
5 initiative and came to Captain Dragan's centre because of his popularity.
6 It suddenly happened that everybody wanted to be trained at his centre so
7 that there was a reaction. Some of them would be sent back. And an
8 agreement was reached between Captain Dragan and them about the size of
9 this unit. Or I cannot call it unit, but, rather, the recruits who had
10 to undergo training. Even though these people had some experience in
11 combat, but Captain Dragan trained them anyway, and this had to do with
12 reconnaissance activities.
13 Q. [Microphone not activated]
14 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
15 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Did Captain Dragan tell you whether his arrival in Benkovac had
17 anything to do with the state security of the Republic of Serbia?
18 A. No. On the contrary. One of the first things he asked me was
19 whether anyone from the Serbian DB was present. When I told him that
20 nobody was there, he said that he was relieved, that he felt better when
21 they were not around, and then he told me that he was not on good terms
22 with the DB, without mentioning any details why and whether it was a
23 personal disagreement with anyone, but he did mention the institution's
25 JUDGE ORIE: Could we really slow down. It's going by far too
2 Please proceed.
3 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Mr. Witness, during the proofing session I showed you a
5 Prosecution video. It's V000-3788. From minute 54 to minute 58 in this
6 video, what is depicted is a meeting from the 2nd of September, 1993.
7 I selected two stills from this video, so I would ask you to help
8 me identify who is represented in these stills.
9 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] So if my learned friend Mr. Farr
10 does not object, I would ask for 2D1044 to be shown on the screen.
11 JUDGE ORIE: May I take it that it's something in dispute, that
12 there's a dispute about persons appearing there?
13 MR. FARR: Your Honour, I certainly don't have personal knowledge
14 of the man we see on our screen.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then let's have a look.
16 Mr. Petrovic.
17 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
18 Q. Mr. Witness, do you know the person who can be seen in the upper
19 left-hand corner of the screen?
20 A. [No interpretation]
21 Q. Can we please have a look at 2D1045.
22 MR. JORDASH: Sorry.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jordash.
24 MR. JORDASH: I'm not sure we got an answer to --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
1 MR. JORDASH: -- the question.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Have you identified the person whose upper half of
3 the face is visible on the left top corner?
4 The previous photograph, please.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's me.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Could you look again at the picture which is now on
7 your screen.
8 When you said "that is me," were you referring to the picture
9 where half of a face is seen in the left top corner? Is that you?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Then now we move to the next picture.
12 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Mr. Witness, can you recognise the person we can see in this
14 still? And can you tell us something about the insignia which we can see
15 on the beret and on the sleeve of this person? Whose insignia these are.
16 A. That is Captain Dragan at the same meeting. And the insignia are
17 those of the Republic of Serbian Krajina, both on his sleeve and on his
18 cap. It is slightly blurred, but I saw it previously on the video when
19 you showed it to me.
20 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I would tender these photographs
21 as a Defence exhibit.
22 MR. FARR: Your Honour, I would just note that it was
23 Mr. Petrovic rather than the witness who told us that these stills come
24 from a meeting on the 2nd of September, 1993. Perhaps it would be
25 helpful if we could get the witness to indicate what he knows about this
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Petrovic.
3 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I wanted to shorten
4 it. Whoever watches the whole video can see it clearly. But let us
5 tell -- let us ask the witness to tell us whether he knows what sort of a
6 meeting this was, when was it held, and who were those who attended it.
7 If there's any dispute about it, we can watch the whole video, which
8 lasts about four minutes.
9 Q. Well, Mr. Witness, can you tell us what sort of a meeting this
10 was, who attended it, and why was the meeting held, if you know?
11 A. The meeting was held in early September. It's a meeting that was
12 held every three months or so. It was a briefing for the prime minister,
13 which included all the factors of security in the territory of the
14 Republic of the Serbian Krajina, senior officers, the minister, the
15 assistants for internal affairs, civilian protection, and everything that
16 had to do with security organs in the RSK area. Usually it would last
17 all day. Everybody would submit their reports to the prime minister, and
18 this is where the directives were given. The government would issue
19 directives for future work. And then at the following meeting they would
20 review the previous period, and in -- also review what was happening
21 currently in the field.
22 Q. Witness, thank you very much.
23 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I had asked to
24 tender these two stills as Defence exhibits, if this is possible.
25 MR. FARR: No objection, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
2 THE REGISTRAR: Document 2D1044 will receive number D676. And
3 document 2D1045 will receive number D677, Your Honours.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Both are admitted into evidence.
5 Please proceed.
6 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. Witness, do you know what the political situation was in the part
8 of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina in the Bihac and Kladusa area in
10 A. As of June 1993, I was appointed the chief of the state security
11 administration of the Krajina, so that I also commanded the part of the
12 operative forces that were covering and providing intelligence for that
14 In the summer of 1993, there were serious divisions. This
15 happened before, but serious divisions started in the summer of 1993
16 between the forces of the 5th Corps led by Colonel Atif Dudakovic and the
17 political part of the region of Bihac which was called western Bosnia and
18 which was led by Fikret Abdic. There were some considerable tensions
19 among them.
20 Q. Sir, at some point did you receive information that some contact
21 was being sought from this area?
22 A. Yes. The state security centre in Vojnic and Glina who bordered
23 on that territory which we referred to as western Bosnia indicated in a
24 extensive overview of the situation that Fikret Abdic wanted to contact
25 and negotiate with the leadership of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina
1 in order to pacify completely the situation in the terrain, cease-fires
2 negotiations, and so on.
3 I conveyed this information to the Government of the Republic of
4 Serbian Krajina, of course to our minister, who at that point in time was
5 Milan Martic, and they reacted positively to this information.
6 Q. And did you receive any assignment relating to this matter?
7 A. Yes. After government consultations and consultations with the
8 prime minister and the minister, I was summoned, and I was told that it
9 would be a good thing to start negotiations with Fikret Abdic. They
10 believed that it would not be good out of political reasons for anybody
11 with a responsible political function to go, and they proposed that I go
12 to the first meeting with Fikret Abdic, and I organised this. And
13 already after a few days we got in touch through my colleagues in the
14 field and Fikret confirmed affirmatively, he responded affirmatively, and
15 then we approached the technical organisation of that meeting with
16 Fikret Abdic.
17 Q. Witness, sir, if you recall, do you know whether the meeting was
18 held? When? And where?
19 A. I don't know the exact date, but I know that it was in
20 mid-September 1993. The meeting was held on the very boundary of the
21 area we referred to as Kordun and the area we referred to as western
22 Bosnia in an abandoned house which, for that opportunity, was fixed up,
23 furnished. I can say more, that I was informed by the Main Staff that
24 for a kilometre and a half there will be a telephone wire laid to the
25 house because President Milosevic himself wanted to speak with
1 Fikret Abdic once we met there.
2 And this is what happened. The military placed the telephone
3 cable. Mr. Abdic came to this meeting. I had clear instructions from
4 the Government of the Krajina that had to do with us supporting his
5 proposal for a truce. At that meeting, he also said that he wanted a
6 truce. I asked him, What are we going to do with this other part of the
7 5th Corps that did not want a truce? He said that he had a lot of
8 influence on their fighters and that he would try gradually to persuade
9 them that peace would be a very useful thing to the people in the Bihac
10 region. They were facing a humanitarian catastrophe there, had a
11 shortage of food. That was his main argument. We agreed to that. After
12 that, there was a --
13 Q. May I just interrupt you for a minute. You mentioned that
14 President Milosevic wanted to speak. Did president Milosevic talk to
15 Abdic on that occasion?
16 A. Yes. I was just about to say that. The telephone conversation
17 did take place. This was some sort of special line. I just picked up
18 the receiver and Mr. Milosevic's secretary was on the line, and then he
19 took over. I attended this conversation, which was very friendly, and it
20 showed that President Milosevic was supporting Fikret Abdic in his
21 intention to negotiate a truce with the Republic of the Serbian Krajina.
22 Q. On that occasion, was any kind of meeting agreed?
23 A. Yes, it was. President Milosevic asked Abdic whether there was
24 any possibility and whether he wanted to come to Belgrade at all, and
25 Abdic responded in the affirmative.
1 Q. Do you know if Abdic made some suggestions about how to set up a
2 truce in that area? Did Abdic consult anyone else about these proposals
3 that he mentioned to you at this first meeting?
4 A. Well, he came with several of his associates, whom I didn't know,
5 so that I don't know if he consulted anyone else about his position.
6 Q. You mentioned that this meeting between Abdic and Milosevic was
7 agreed on. Did this meeting take place, do you know? And if you do
8 know, how do you know?
9 A. Yes, I do know. Because I organised Fikret Abdic's trip to
10 Belgrade and I even personally took part in that.
11 I have to add also that the technical preparation from the
12 Belgrade side was something that I was not informed about. Milan Martic
13 told me when Abdic was supposed to come to Belgrade and that is what we
15 Q. Are you able to tell us where the meeting took place; and do you
16 know who it was that Abdic met with in Belgrade?
17 A. The meeting was held in Belgrade in Boticeva Street at the
18 Presidency villa. It was a building that was a state institution owned
19 by the president of the Presidency of the Republic of Serbia. I don't
20 know who was present specifically, because we did not follow Abdic into
21 the premises.
22 Q. And did you have the opportunity to speak with Abdic after this
23 meeting? On the way back. Are you able to tell us what Abdic told you,
24 who did you speak with, what were the topics, and what was agreed, if
25 anything, at that meeting?
1 A. Yes. On the way back, Abdic told me that he was very impressed
2 with President Milosevic, who accepted and supported his plan on peace.
3 He said that it was time for all war to stop. President Milosevic, Abdic
4 said, suggested that a same kind of agreement be concluded with
5 Republika Srpska, i.e., at the time they believed that that agreement was
6 more important because of considerable action by Republika Srpska,
7 because more than half of the region bordered with Republika Srpska. So
8 Abdic said that he accepted that, and President Milosevic took it upon
9 himself in the coming period to prepare, as he said, the terrain for
10 Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic relating to this agreement.
11 Q. Witness, sir, and the state security of the Republic of Serbia,
12 did it have any role in organising or implementing this first meeting
13 between Abdic and Milosevic?
14 A. As far as I know, no.
15 Q. Witness, are you able to tell us whether at any point in time
16 there were conflicts that broke out in western Bosnia between the
17 supporters of Fikret Abdic and the 5th Corps, under the command of
18 Atif Dudakovic?
19 A. Yes. Clashes did break out. But I have to emphasise that the
20 agreement really was signed, I think in the second half of October 1993.
21 And it was published in the media that Fikret Abdic had been to Belgrade.
22 And I think that that was the main reason for the intensification of the
23 conflict of the 5th Corps with Abdic, pursuant to directives from the
24 leadership in Sarajevo, whom it did not suit that a number of Muslim
25 people would enter into agreement with the Serbs.
1 Q. Witness, do you know what the position was of the Republic of
2 Croatia about these contacts between Milosevic, Abdic, and the others
3 that we mentioned, at this time?
4 A. Mr. Fikret Abdic told me personally that he had talked with
5 President Tudjman. Had some sort of satellite telephone through which he
6 communicated with the world, and he told me that President Tudjman had
7 nothing against this agreement.
8 Q. Do you know whether a similar agreement was concluded with the
9 Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna, in Bosnia and Herzegovina?
10 A. Yes. The day before we left to sign the agreement in Belgrade,
11 Mr. Abdic was in Zagreb, and he signed an identical agreement with, I
12 think, their president. I think that his name was Boban, the president
13 of Herceg-Bosna.
14 Q. Witness, you told us that once the agreement was signed there was
15 a conflict that broke out between Abdic's supporters and the 5th Corps.
16 Are you able to tell us how this conflict evolved and whether at some
17 point any of the sides became stronger in the agreement?
18 A. The conflicts were already there but of a much lesser intensity.
19 After that, the conflict proceeded quite negatively for the Army of
20 western Bosnia, which resulted in the total capture of Velika Kladusa,
21 which was the centre of western Bosnia and with the expulsion -- well, I
22 cannot say it was an expulsion, but the complete population and the Army
23 of western Bosnia, of their own will, fled to the territory of the
24 Republic of the Serbian Krajina.
25 Q. Can you please tell us where these refugees were accommodated and
1 what happened to the weapons that the members of the army brought out to
2 the republic -- to the territory of the Serbian Krajina?
3 A. When they left, the weapons were seized. Actually, they lay down
4 their arms voluntarily. And then there were two trucks, as far as I can
5 remember, two trucks of ammunition. Most of them, or a number of them,
6 wanted to continue to Croatian territory but the UNPROFOR did not allow
7 them to do that, so they all stayed on the territory of the RSK, that we
8 call Kordun. There were about 80.000 people all in all.
9 Q. Can you please tell us where these refugees were placed and what
10 was the humanitarian situation?
11 A. Since there isn't such a large area in the Krajina to receive a
12 large number of people, they were literally accommodated in the open in
13 two camps, Slunj and Turanj. One was even larger. And the situation was
14 catastrophic. These people didn't have the the most basic provisions.
15 And we directed all the resources in that part of the Krajina to help
16 them. We also asked for the help of the international community,
17 primarily of UNPROFOR, and we did receive some food which we handed over.
18 But it was insufficient for any longer type of stay for such a large
19 number of people in a small area, where I have to mention, for example,
20 from the Croatian to the Bosnian border, this whole area was some
21 24 kilometres wide.
22 Q. Sir, did you inform anyone about this situation in these camps?
23 A. Yes. I would regularly report back. This was already
24 August 1994. I kept Milan Martic informed, who was the president at the
25 time. I also informed the government. As far as I know, Milan Martic,
1 as the president, reported to the Serbian state leadership who were
2 guarantors and sponsors of that peace agreement, if I may put it that
4 Q. At some point did Martic seek any help? And who did he ask for
5 help to resolve this problem?
6 A. Yes, he did ask for help, since the situation was very alarming,
7 first of all, from the humanitarian aspect, the conditions these people
8 were living in. But there was also then a security problem. We had
9 80.000 people in our territory who had lost everything. They were
10 outraged, and the UNPROFOR would not permit them to move on out of
11 concern that they would ask for asylum in western countries. So there
12 was a lot of dissatisfaction in these camps among the population. And
13 Martic asked President Milosevic, as well as Radovan Karadzic, whom he
14 called, for help as soon as possible to resolve these problems and to
15 excerpt pressure on the international community for them to go back. And
16 since the international community did not react, or as far as we were
17 informed by the UNPROFOR command in Knin, the 5th Corps and the
18 government in Sarajevo did not agree to any kind of return of these
19 refugees to their homes. Martic launched an initiative for them to be
20 returned by force, by use of weapons.
21 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I see the time. I
22 would ask to go on a break. And at the same time, I would kindly ask you
23 for half an hour or 45 minutes after the break in order for me to be able
24 to complete my examination-in-chief. I am aware that I have exceeded the
25 time that I requested, but I hope that what I have been asking today was
1 relevant and that it will be of help to the Trial Chamber, and that is
2 why I am requesting to have additional time.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Before considering that, we have now listened for a
4 couple of pages to the fate of refugees, where all three of us, the whole
5 of the Bench, doesn't understand what the relevance is, let alone that it
6 would be a focussed --
7 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] May I help, Your Honour, in that?
8 JUDGE ORIE: Please do so. But perhaps we first allow the
9 witness to leave the courtroom.
10 We'd like to see you back in half an hour. Could you follow the
12 [The witness stands down]
13 JUDGE ORIE: In a few lines, Mr. Petrovic.
14 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
15 The questions I've been putting to the witness over the last
16 couple of minutes have to do with the reasons or motivations behind the
17 joint action of the RSK, RS, and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to
18 enable these people to return to the area from where they were expelled.
19 Part of this action is Operation Pauk, which is a very complex
20 issue in this trial. The witness gave reasons why these activities were
21 embarked upon, and these were activities that we've heard a lot about
22 during the trial.
23 JUDGE ORIE: But did we have to know the details of who asked
24 exactly for help, to whom, and how many there were, et cetera? Could
25 that not be condensed in just half a page instead of four pages?
1 Mr. Jordash, you were on your feet.
2 MR. JORDASH: Only to support Mr. Petrovic in the sense that from
3 our perspective the Prosecution have not indicated what they say is the
4 significance of Pauk to either the joint criminal enterprise or any other
5 connection to crime. And we would say, from the Defence, side that the
6 DB were perfectly entitled, if Your Honours find this to be the case, to
7 co-operate and collaborate on this operation because there was no
8 criminal purpose, and it couldn't be conceived as a contribution to a
9 criminal purpose.
10 JUDGE ORIE: So what, then, the purpose was, was to establish
11 that there were humanitarian -- there was a humanitarian situation, such
12 that Operation Pauk and the involvement of the -- of the Serbian
13 government, I take it, a little bit, that very cautiously was justified.
14 MR. JORDASH: Your Honour, yes.
15 JUDGE ORIE: I think, as a matter of fact, that that could have
16 been done in approximately a third of the time you took for it, but ...
17 [Trial Chamber confers]
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Farr, how much time would you need with the
19 witness, as matters stand now?
20 MR. FARR: Approximately five hours, as matters stand now,
21 Your Honour.
22 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber will consider it over the break.
23 But let's avoid that what happens now more and more often, that
24 we start with an estimate of times and that what seems to be possible in
25 one week that we take two weeks for that. That's really not -- and it
1 seems that the main problem was in the beginning, Mr. Petrovic, and
2 that's, of course, very difficult to repair at the end.
3 So the Chamber will consider how to address this, I would say,
4 this constant going over the time estimates.
5 We'll take a break, and we will resume at 25 minutes to 1.00.
6 --- Recess taken at 12.06 p.m.
7 [The witness takes the stand]
8 --- On resuming at 12.38 p.m.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Draca, before we continue, would you be
10 available to continue your testimony early next week? That is, on
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If needed, yes.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Because we may not be able to finish your --
14 to conclude your testimony this week.
15 Mr. Petrovic, the Chamber has considered the timing and the
16 repeated going over the time estimates. One of the problems for the
17 Chamber is that we do not want to intervene, when, at the beginning, I
18 said to you, I think, after one hour, that whether it was really so
19 important to spend so much time on the background, then, of course, the
20 Chamber doesn't want to say this after 15 minutes, or after 20 or
21 25 minutes. It's your own responsibility to divide your time over the
22 more and less important matters.
23 The Chamber has decided, for itself, that we'll be far more
24 strict. No repeated going over the time again. And we have decided to
25 do this after we have considered what happened often during the
1 examination-in-chief, and that is that a lot of time is spent on matters
2 which seems - at least at first sight - to be of less direct relevance or
3 which could be dealt with in a far more effective way. Sometimes you
4 really do not need four, five, six pages to establish something which,
5 with a few focussed questions, could have elicited from the witness.
6 It is also the lack of focus now and then which triggers the need
7 for the Chamber, in order to understand the testimony, to put questions,
8 which, by a focussed phrasing of the questions, should not have been any
9 problem to understand the witness, such as time-frames, et cetera.
10 So therefore, the Chamber will be far more strict in the near
11 future, and it will have no effect yet on the testimony of this witness.
12 I immediately add to that, that the Prosecution is asking for
13 quite some time for cross-examination, which -- where the balance
14 sometimes is not as it should be, and the Prosecution is therefore
15 invited already in relation to this witness to see whether it can --
16 where the examination-in-chief takes four and a half hours, whether
17 there's really a need to cross-examine the witness in five hours, and to
18 reconsider that. And, again, also to focus on the most important issues.
19 There may be some inherent problems which I'll not discuss now,
20 but, Mr. Farr, you're invited to see whether you can reduce the time.
21 And we'll take a strict approach as well.
22 No messages for Mr. Jordash at this moment.
23 You have 45 minutes left, and I'll be strict, Mr. Petrovic.
24 Please proceed.
25 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. Mr. Witness, before the last break you said that you briefed
2 Martic on the situation and that Martic thought that steps needed to be
3 taken to make sure that the people who had been driven out of their land
5 Do you know if Martic took any specific steps to making sure that
6 this happened?
7 A. Yes. But let me say that the Main Staff of the RSK army thought
8 that the situation was highly dramatic. Mr. Martic contacted Mr. Abdic
9 who was with the refugees in our territory a couple of times. Abdic
10 informed him of the measures he took vis-ŕ-vis the international
11 community to ensure their peaceful return. After a while, Martic told us
12 that Abdic himself had launched the initiative to put together combat
13 forces in order to militarily --
14 JUDGE ORIE: The question was: Do you know if Martic took any
15 specific steps to make sure that this happens? Your answer was "yes."
16 And if you want to elaborate, tell us about Martic's steps, and not about
17 the whole historical background.
18 Mr. Petrovic, you're also invited to keep the testimony -- to
19 conduct it in such a way that you get the answers you're asking for and
20 that you stop a witness when he goes beyond that.
21 Please proceed.
22 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I will, Your Honour. Thank you.
23 Q. Mr. Witness, please tell us specifically about Martic, what he
24 felt should be done; and what, if anything, did he do?
25 A. The first steps he took were contacts with Fikret Abdic to see
1 what he felt was best to be done.
2 Next, he put pressure to bear on Radovan Karadzic in the RS and
3 Milosevic in Belgrade, though he put more pressure on Karadzic to make
4 sure that his people returned to western Bosnia.
5 Q. You mentioned Abdic's position. Can you tell us what it was and
6 how you came to know of it?
7 A. On two occasions I went to visit Abdic with Martic. He felt the
8 situation was hopeless and said that he had 4- to 5.000 soldiers who he
9 would be able to organise into a combat force to try to make sure that
10 they return. Martic couldn't give him any sort of reaction to that
11 because he to consult with the top military leadership.
12 Q. Tell us first, What period of time was this?
13 A. This was in the month of September 1994. Early September.
14 Q. Did, at some point, Abdic go to Belgrade? And if he did, how did
15 you get to know it, and who did he talk to in Belgrade?
16 A. Yes. He went once more. Martic made the contact possible with
17 President Milosevic, and we arranged his travel to Belgrade.
18 Q. Did you accompany Abdic to Belgrade, you personally?
19 A. Yes, I did.
20 Q. Can you tell us, if you know, what was agreed in Belgrade; and if
21 you do know about it, how come?
22 A. Let me say that before Abdic went to Belgrade, Matic and
23 General Celeketic went to speak to President Milosevic, and that was how
24 this second meeting came about. And Abdic informed me of the outcome of
25 the meeting. He said that Milosevic agreed to help him to ensure the
1 return of the people, and specifically by providing him the needed
2 logistics, such as uniforms, various other equipment, and whatever was
3 needed to train these people. He also wanted to send military
4 instructors to help with the training in order that they might try and
5 break their way through to western Bosnia.
6 Q. Were you informed that a staff had been set up to bring this plan
7 into action?
8 A. Yes. But that was after our return. Martic and
9 General Mile Novakovic informed me about it.
10 Q. Can you tell me what they told you specifically?
11 A. They said that the upshot of the meeting in Belgrade was the
12 decision to help the forces of Fikret Abdic in military terms. To that
13 end, a staff was to be -- or was set up, which was to be charged with all
14 the various measures concerning that activity. And when I say
15 "measures," I mean putting together, organising, training, and equipping
16 Abdic's forces, including humanitarian actions, security assessments, and
18 Q. Can you tell us, Was the staff set up? And, if you know, who was
19 in charge of it?
20 A. I know that the staff was set up. It was important for the staff
21 to be close to the place of these events. That was on
22 Mount Petrova Gora, in Kordun, and the staff was headed by
23 General Mile Novakovic, and Chief of the Staff was Colonel Cedo Bulat.
24 Q. Can you tell us if the staff had some sort of title or name?
25 A. The staff was given the code-name Pauk.
1 Q. Once the staff was set up, did some sort of assistance arrive
2 from the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia as a follow-up to what you've
3 been telling us?
4 A. Yes. I think it was in mid-October that a convoy arrived
5 carrying aid from Yugoslavia.
6 Q. How did you come to know about the arrival of the convoy? And if
7 you have personal knowledge about it, first-hand knowledge, can you tell
8 us something about the cargo?
9 A. Pursuant to a decision of the Krajina government, I was
10 duty-bound to spend all my time in the Pauk staff in order to be able to
11 timely respond both toward the president and the government on all the
12 events that took place and to organise the operational work -- or,
13 rather, the work of the operatives of the State Security Service
14 structure in the area, which was supposed to assist the staff.
15 Specifically at that time we were worried about the activities of the
16 Croatian army, because an attack happened at the time when we had -- or,
17 rather, we believed that it would be a disaster if an attack struck at
18 the time when we had 80.000 refugees in the field.
19 Q. I'm sorry to interrupt. My question had to do with the convoy.
20 A. Yes. I was present there myself as the convoy arrived.
21 Q. Can you tell us, if you know, what the convoy carried; and how
22 large was it?
23 A. I remember it by a very specific situation. I know that there
24 were roughly 20 vehicles in the convoy. There were 7- to 8.000 old JNA
25 uniforms, underwear, and everything that is needed. There were two
1 tank -- gas tanks, fuel tanks. There were also some items that we
2 learned later to be part of technical equipment. There were trucks
3 carrying foodstuffs.
4 The only thing I'm sure about is that there were no weapons. The
5 position was they should not bring over weapons. We had a lot of weapons
6 that had been seized of Fikret Abdic's forces as they came out of western
7 Bosnia and stored.
8 Q. You mentioned a moment ago that the forces of western Bosnia were
9 supposed to be engaged in this combat. And do you know what the strength
10 of these forces was? What was done on that score?
11 A. There were many discussions with Fikret Abdic on this issue. All
12 of us, both the civilian and military authorities of the Krajina, did not
13 trust his assessments, not because we wouldn't trust him as a person, but
14 because we didn't trust that he had proper information. So a proposal
15 came about to actually ask the people of western Bosnia to see how many
16 would wish to go back. Then it was discussed with Abdic, and it all
17 boiled down so some to 4- to 4.500 people who wanted to go back.
18 Q. When you 4.000 to 4.500, who do you mean?
19 A. Well, I mean the refugees from western Bosnia of Muslim
21 Q. Four and a half thousand combatants or 4.500 inhabitants?
22 A. Of all the refugees, 4.500 able-bodied men stepped forward
23 stating their willingness to fight their way back.
24 Q. So how was Fikret's army set up and how did it all evolve?
25 A. It was all part of the same plan. Since we didn't have similar
1 personnel in Krajina, and because of open combat activities with the
2 Republic of Croatia, we were not able to set aside instructors who would
3 be working with them. It was agreed that as part of the convoy or a day
4 or two sooner or later a group of instructors would arrive who would,
5 first of all, look into the psychological and physical condition of these
6 men and to train them for some infantry action before they return.
7 Q. Do you know if any instructors did arrive; and if so, do you know
8 any of their names?
9 A. I do know that together with the convoy Zika Ivanovic arrived
10 that same night with a group of his men. He was also known as
11 Zika Crnogorac, the Montenegrin.
12 Q. Do you know who summoned him, Ivanovic?
13 A. It was Martic himself who called him by phone in Novi Sad where
14 he resided and said that he would refuse to do anything unless Zika
15 arrived. He trusted him. He told him to go to Belgrade where he would
16 receive further instructions.
17 I don't know how he came to appear with the convoy. Was it the
18 Krajina government that sent him instructions to join them?
19 Q. Do you know an individual by the name of Milorad Ulemek, aka
21 A. Yes, I do.
22 Q. Do you know if he, too, arrived in the area as an instructor in
23 that same period of time?
24 A. Yes, he did, but at a later date.
25 Q. Do you know in what way he arrived?
1 A. The very next morning after the arrival of the convoy, I informed
2 Martic that the convoy was there and told him that together with the
3 convoy Zika Ivanovic arrived with some ten to 15 men. Martic was
4 indignant because he thought that many more people would arrive. They
5 did, in fact, arrive that night, but they were there as security escorts
6 for the convoy. So he called Eastern Slavonia again, the same person I
7 referred to earlier, deputy defence minister, and asked that Arkan
8 come -- should come. Ultimately he told him that Arkan wasn't able to
9 come but instead Ulemek would come with a dozen men, and he did, in early
10 November, so some 15 to 20 days after the arrival of the convoy. But I
11 don't know how many men exactly he brought along.
12 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... one clarifying
14 You said Martic told Zika to go to Belgrade for further
15 instructions. Who or what in Belgrade would give that further
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From 1993, there was a
18 representative office of the Government of the Republic of the Serbian
19 Krajina in Belgrade which was called the bureau of the same. All members
20 of the government and ministries were members of that bureau, and they
21 were dealing with issues from the sphere of economics, food supplies, and
22 things like that. Its director personally, his name is Djumic [phoen], I
23 think --
24 JUDGE ORIE: I didn't ask you about details about the bureau. So
25 the simple answer would have been: It would be the representative office
1 of the Government of the Republic of Serbian Krajina, and then can you
2 mention the name. That will answer my question.
3 So that's where he got further instructions. At least that's
4 where he was sent for further instructions.
5 Please proceed, Mr. Petrovic.
6 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. Witness, do you know when the operation to return began; and do
8 you know who commanded the whole action of the return to the western
9 Bosnia area?
10 A. After some 20 days of training, there was an assessment at the
11 staff command that these units were capable of return, and on the
12 17th of November the action started under the command of Mile Novakovic.
13 And then I have to add that in the meantime Fikret Abdic's units were
14 formed. He appointed a person by the name of Serif Mustedanagic [phoen]
15 to command his units. And since General Novakovic was in the staff, this
16 other general was on the front line with his units or wherever they had
17 forward command posts.
18 Q. If you know, how -- what was the insignia of these units who went
19 to the front?
20 A. Fikret Abdic's units had their own insignia. And we also marked
21 them in the way that they were divided during the training. We indicated
22 them as Tactical Group 1, 2, and 3.
23 Q. And in these tactical groups, other than the officers of Fikret's
24 army, were there any others?
25 A. Yes. There were instructors that I mentioned. Other than
1 Zika Ivanovic who had to return to Novi Sad for personal reasons, health
2 reasons, and he was replaced by Rajo Bozovic, who was a man
3 who [as interpreted] had brought with him.
4 Any way, the instructors were part of the forces, 10 to
5 20 people, depending on the size of the tactical group. These
6 instructors were together with the Muslim units.
7 Q. Witness, do you know why these instructors were there in the
8 Fikret army units when this combat was going on that was supposed to
9 enable them to return?
10 A. This was pre-agreed, before the attack started, with the
11 political and military leadership of the Army of western Bosnia that it
12 would be a good thing for the instructors to stay in the units, first of
13 all, for reasons of morale, psychological reasons. And to tell you the
14 truth, from our side it was good for us to know what was going on and to
15 keep some sort of control, because we had an interest in the wishes and
16 the morale of these people. The other thing was for the communications
17 system to function. Of course we knew the voices of the instructors, so
18 the communications proceeded through the officers and Abdic's units, and
19 we could not be sure if there was a fall or anything else that was going
20 on. So these people were responsible for the communications system.
21 Q. You say that there was an interest for these people to be there.
22 There were reasons for them to be there. Were there any security
23 concerns regarding the development of the situation, the status of the
25 A. That is correct. I've already partially answered that question,
1 and I just want to add that there was also a danger, also noted by
2 Mr. Abdic. These were fellow peoples, had family connections, so there
3 was a danger for them to cross over to the other side, to the side of the
4 5th Corps. And so we also felt that that was also one of the tasks of
5 the instructors who went into action together with these units.
6 Q. Witness, do you know if at any point Franko Simatovic came to
7 this area of Petrova Gora?
8 A. Yes. A day or two after the convoy.
9 Q. And did you find out the reasons for his arrival? And if you
10 did, how did you find them out?
11 A. I was there when he came. He told me that he brought technical
12 equipment in the convoy that I referred to before, which was meant to
13 upgrade the old equipment on the Celavac-Pljesevica and
14 Magarcevac-Petrova Gora observation points. He told me that he was going
15 to go with the technicians that he brought together in the convoy on that
16 same day to set up these facilities so that the radio reconnaissance
17 system would not be used only for the Pauk operation but would also be
18 useful in Belgrade.
19 Q. Did Frenki stay there, did he go somewhere? Do you know what
20 happened to him?
21 A. He was just there for one day. He spent the night, and then he
22 left the next day, together with those trucks with the equipment.
23 Q. Do you know where he went?
24 A. He told me that he was going to Pljesevica. This is a mountain
25 which is some 100 kilometres from that place.
1 Q. During those days - October, November, December, 1992 [as
2 interpreted] - did you meet Simatovic at Petrova Gora? This was 1994.
3 A. Yes, I would meet him from time to time.
4 Q. Are you able to tell us if you had a chance to speak with him?
5 A. Yes. We did talk at some meetings. Actually, we also attended
6 some meetings together as well.
7 Q. Are you able to tell us what the topic of your conversations with
8 Simatovic was?
9 A. Mostly I asked him to inform us about anything that had to do
10 with any threats to the Pauk operation, any considerable movements by
11 Croatian, Muslim troops, helicopter, transports of ammunition to the
12 5th Corps, which could only be found out through radio reconnaissance.
13 He said that he could provide such information, and from time to time he
14 did provide such information to myself and also to the Pauk HQ.
15 Q. Do you know -- you mentioned radio reconnaissance. Do you know
16 what the source of the information was that you received from Simatovic?
17 A. Radio reconnaissance from these centres was a way to penetrate
18 Croatian and Muslim centres, as well as the centres of international
19 forces that were present in that area.
20 Q. In those conversations, did you have any information to offer to
21 Simatovic in turn?
22 A. Well, of course. As chief of security, I did have information
23 from the whole area. Mostly information about any important troop
24 movements and the intentions of the international forces. And I asked
25 him to check the information if the State Security Service of Serbia was
1 able to check that information.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Petrovic, your previous question was not fully
3 translated. So the witness may have heard it, but your microphone was
4 not activated.
5 You asked: "In those conversations, did you have any information
6 to offer to Simatovic" in terms of ... what?
7 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: "... to offer Simatovic in
9 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Information of interest to
10 Simatovic himself.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Yes.
12 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I think that was the thrust of my
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then we've heard the answer. So please put
15 your next question to the witness.
16 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Witness, why was it important? You mentioned gathering
18 information about activities, information, and intentions of the
19 international forces. Why was that important?
20 A. Intelligence work is always important for a country, and it's
21 always important to know in time what the international community is
22 planning and what its intentions are.
23 As far as this area that had to do with the Pauk operation, we
24 were primarily interested in how the international community would react
25 to the military return, to the return of the refugees from western Bosnia
1 by means of weapons.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would now like to
4 move to private session so that I can put a question that would be in
5 line with your guide-lines to the witness at the beginning of his
7 JUDGE ORIE: We move into private session.
8 [Private session]
11 Pages 16822-16823 redacted. Private session.
1 [Open session]
2 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
4 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Witness, in this period, October-December, were there any
6 military intelligence officers in this area?
7 A. Yes. Since the operation was considered exceptionally important
8 for the entire Krajina territory, the Main Staff ordered the presence of
9 intelligence and counter-intelligence officers from the military to be
10 present at the Pauk HQ.
11 Q. You said that in the convoy a number of technicians arrived.
12 Were there any other support services that came with the technicians that
14 A. There was a unit that escorted the convoy. Then there were
15 logistics people, as well as the technicians. I recognised one of them.
16 I knew him from before, from Banja Luka, from Republika Srpska.
17 Q. Mr. Witness, you say that there was a unit that was securing the
18 convoy. Did that unit remain in the area, and what sort of tasks did it
20 A. I have to clarify that the convoy was stationed on the
21 neighbouring hill not very far away, perhaps a kilometre and a half away,
22 from the facility on Magarcevac. And the unit remained there and
23 continued securing the facility where the convoy was stationed.
24 Q. Did the unit have any other tasks at the time in addition to
25 securing facilities?
1 A. It did not have other tasks except when some important guests
2 would arrive to the Pauk staff in Magarcevac. Then they also secured the
3 headquarters building.
4 Q. Can you tell us whether you know Manojlo Milovanovic and whether
5 you met him at any point on Petrova Gora?
6 A. I had known him from before but not really well. I only saw him
7 at a meeting in Knin. And he came to Petrova Gora in early November. He
8 came to the Pauk staff.
9 Q. Did you attend any meeting with General Manojlo Milovanovic?
10 A. Yes, I did. On that occasion when he first arrived there.
11 Q. Can you tell us, What was discussed at the meeting?
12 A. I know what was discussed. The purpose of his coming was the
13 following issue. We were to find a way -- because
14 General Manojlo Milovanovic hailed from Republika Srpska. The issue
15 whether there was a way to link up the units with the other side of the
16 border, that is to say, Republika Srpska, which would facilitate the
17 return of Abdic's units to the territories in western Bosnia.
18 Q. Did you ever attend a meeting where the replacement of the Pauk
19 commander General Novakovic was discussed and the appointment of
20 Manojlo Milovanovic in his place?
21 A. No. And if such a meeting was ever held, I would certainly have
22 known about it. This was never discussed, Mile Novakovic and his
23 possible replacement. Not just replacing him by General Milovanovic, but
24 by anyone else.
25 Q. Have you ever heard that Novakovic's removal was planned or
2 A. No, I never heard anything like that.
3 Q. Mr. Witness, while you and the operatives who were with you in
4 Pauk were there, were you paid in any way for your work? And if so, how
5 were you paid?
6 A. We received regular income from the budget of the RSK government.
7 And in addition to me as the chief of the department, we believed that it
8 shouldn't be so. Fikret Abdic was paying daily allowances for all our
9 fighters who were engaged.
10 Q. Can you tell us how this payment of daily allowances was
12 I apologise. It says in the record "... all our fighters who
13 were engaged." I believe you said something else.
14 A. Operatives.
15 Q. How were the daily allowances paid out, if you know?
16 A. A colleague who was in charge of listing the activities on the
17 ground brought it to me for verification. I would confirm the presence
18 on the ground. And once I did that, he would go to see Fikret Abdic. He
19 would confirm that as well. And then after that he paid it out by a
20 courier who brought money to Knin, and he would collect the money in
22 Q. You say "he paid it out." Who is "he"?
23 A. It was Fikret Abdic. I already mentioned him in the same
25 Q. Thank you, Mr. Witness. I only have five minutes left and a
1 couple of questions.
2 Three minutes.
3 Mr. Witness, do you know that there was an armoured train -- are
4 you aware of the existence of an armoured train in 1991 in Knin?
5 A. Yes, of course I do.
6 Q. Do you know whose idea it was to make such a train? Just be
7 brief, please.
8 A. It was the president of the trade union of railway workers in
9 Knin, Blagoje Guska. He had the idea to construct an armoured train.
10 Q. Who conducted it and how?
11 A. Martic supported the idea, and Guska formed a team of engineers
12 and various people from appropriate professions in order to construct the
13 train, and the TO command in Knin gave him some tools which it had at its
14 disposal at the time.
15 Q. Was the trained christened at any point?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Can you tell us when and under which circumstances?
18 A. Well, the train was baptised, rather than christened, on the
19 30th of June, 1993, and that is the Orthodox holiday Ognjena Marija. The
20 same Guska who constructed it wanted to baptise it on that very day.
21 Previously it was not possible because of combat operations, and I was
22 the godfather. He wanted Martic but he couldn't do it, so he appointed
23 me to be the one who would baptise the train. Actually it was the priest
24 who did it, and I was the godfather.
25 Q. At this celebration of baptism, did anyone mention
1 Franko Simatovic as the originator or the man who had the idea to
2 construct this armoured train or had anything to do with it?
3 A. No. No one mentioned Simatovic. On that occasion, the
4 representative of the Krajina government gave papers with the thanks to
5 everyone who had been in charge for the train, that was Guska and others.
6 And if someone had been killed, then to their family members.
7 Q. Did Simatovic receive any sort of award or any letter of thanks?
8 A. No, he didn't.
9 Q. Just two remaining questions.
10 Mr. Witness, yesterday you mentioned that Frenki told you that
11 Captain Dragan was to be processed. Can you tell us what that means in
12 your service? If an operative says that someone is being processed, what
13 does that imply?
14 A. That implies that there is serious circumstantial evidence that
15 the person is involved in some sort of enemy activity. Then there is a
16 proposal to begin the processing, and if this approved then the person is
17 really processed, which means that all the measures of the service are
18 applied to the persons. And when I say "all measures," I mean that
19 positions are created around him, that he is monitored, documentation is
20 made about all information. Photographs are made, his telephone
21 conversations are monitored, videos are made, and so on.
22 Q. Thank you, Mr. Witness.
23 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I have no
24 further questions.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Petrovic.
1 Before we continue, just for my understanding of your testimony:
2 You said the convoy came from Serbia and was accompanied by a group of
3 men headed by Crnogorac, and that later, I think you said 10 to 14 days
4 later, another group arrived headed by Ulemek, and he was the one who
5 came although a request was made to have Arkan and Arkan's men arrive in
6 the area.
7 Did I understand your testimony well that both the group headed
8 by Crnogorac and the group headed by Ulemek were there exclusively for
9 providing security to the Pauk staff and the equipment that had been
10 brought in the convoy?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. The Counsel Petrovic asked me
12 about an armed group that accompanied the convoy, but that was something
14 As for the group of instructors, there was one that was led by
15 Zika Crnogorac and another group that subsequently arrived led by
16 Milorad Ulemek. But it wasn't the same, the one that provided security.
17 That was a different group.
18 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours.
19 JUDGE ORIE: One second, Mr. Petrovic.
20 So if I do understand you well, the group surrounding Crnogorac
21 was there for training purposes, to train other persons, not to be
22 trained, but training other purposes [sic]. And was the same then true
23 for the group surrounding Ulemek, or were they there for another purpose?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was the same, the purpose: To
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And was there then another group which
2 provided security both to the vehicles of the convoy, which were not --
3 which were close to the headquarters but not in the headquarters itself,
4 and who would assist in providing security for the headquarters, if
6 Is that correctly understood?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's correct.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Okay.
9 Now, this last group - or I think you said "unit" - providing
10 security, it was a unit of what exactly?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was a unit from the MUP of
12 Serbia which accompanied the convoy which was supposed to pass through
13 Republika Srpska and a large part of the RSK.
14 We were asking for assistance, and it was this group that
15 accompanied the convoy from its starting point in Belgrade onwards.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now you say: "Unit from the MUP of Serbia."
17 The MUP of Serbia exists of more units. Could you be more precise?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not quite sure, but I think
19 that it's the anti-terrorist unit.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now, finally, when being there, did they limit
21 themselves to the task you just described; that is, that this unit from
22 the MUP of Serbia did -- was exclusively involved in providing security
23 to the convoy or at least the vehicles of the convoy just outside the
24 headquarters and, if need be, the headquarters, or were they involved in
25 other activities as well, such as combat activities?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I state with full responsibility
2 that at no point did unit -- did this unit get engaged in combat
4 JUDGE ORIE: I mentioned combat activities just as one example.
5 My -- the core of my question was whether they limited themselves, and
6 that means they were exclusively involved in providing security on the
7 spot where the convoy or what had remained of the convoy was and the
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Precisely so.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
11 Mr. Jordash, are you ready to start your cross-examination?
12 You will now be cross-examined - at least we'll start with the
13 first ten minutes of cross-examination - by Mr. Jordash. Mr. Jordash is
14 counsel for the Prosecution -- for the Stanisic Defence, for
15 Mr. Stanisic.
16 MR. JORDASH: Thank you, Your Honour.
17 Cross-examination by Mr. Jordash:
18 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Witness.
19 A. Good afternoon.
20 Q. I just want to try to elicit some more details about some of the
21 things you've talked about, starting close to the beginning of your
22 testimony and the setting up of the state security of the SAO Krajina.
23 You took your instructions from Dusan Orlovic; correct?
24 A. That's correct.
25 Q. And up until the time that the service was disbanded by Martic in
1 November and December of 1991, had you ever spoken to Mr. Stanisic in
2 relation to anything?
3 A. No. I never spoke to Mr. Stanisic, nor did I ever see him.
4 Q. And Dusan Orlovic never told you that any instructions had come
5 from Mr. Stanisic; is that correct?
6 A. That's correct. He never told me such a thing.
7 Q. Now, when the service was disbanded in November and early
8 December of 1991, what were you doing - just very briefly - in the period
9 before it was formed again in August of 1992?
10 A. I joined the units of the Territorial Defence, which, later on,
11 became part of the Republic of the Serbian Krajina army in a place called
12 Zemunik Gornji. It was in the immediate vicinity of the Zadar airport.
13 Q. Now, when the service was reformed in August of 1992, am I
14 correct that as a result of some conflict with the Serbian DB you nor any
15 of your colleagues were in communication with any of the personnel from
16 the Serbian DB; is that correct as far as you are aware?
17 A. The latter part is true. As for the former, I cannot say that it
18 was a conflict between Martic and the Serbian DB. I don't know who he
19 quarrelled with, whether it was Mr. Milosevic or Mr. Stanisic, but at any
20 rate, he strictly forbade us from communicating with them.
21 We [as interpreted] even told us to convey that information to our
22 operatives, that any sort of contact, even physical in terms of the
23 offices of the Serbian DB, were strictly prohibited.
24 Q. Now, at the time - late January of 1993 - when some contact was
25 formed with the Serbian DB, were you in contact with Mr. Stanisic? Did
1 you meet him? Did you speak to him? Did you receive any instructions
2 from him?
3 A. Not personally to him. I was received by Mr. Slobodan Mijatovic
4 at the time. He was the head of one of the RDB administrations. There
5 wasn't just I; there was also Pecikozic.
6 Q. And the relationship between the Krajina DB and the Serbian DB at
7 that time, how would you characterise it? Was it limited to the exchange
8 of intelligence, or was there something else to it?
9 A. In principle, it had to do with the exchange of intelligence and
10 counter-intelligence, as you said. But there were some technical issues
11 involved; like, for instance, announcing the arrival of our delegation in
12 Belgrade, asking for their assistance as they crossed into the
13 Republic of Serbia, et cetera.
14 In reverse, we would receive announcements of the arrival of
15 prominent individuals from Serbia who would be bringing in aid, and we
16 were asked to assist them as they crossed over from Serbia.
17 Q. Thank you. The evidence in this case suggests that Dusan Orlovic
18 started sending some kind of reports from April of 1993. There isn't any
19 report that the Prosecution or the Defence have been able to find
20 relating to 1991 and 1992.
21 Were you aware that Orlovic started to send some reports to the
22 Serbian DB from April of 1993?
23 A. I don't quite understand what you're saying. At that time,
24 Orlovic had not been in Krajina for two years, nor was he an operative of
25 ours. He left Krajina at some point, I think, in December 1991 when
1 Martic disbanded our service. So at that time Orlovic had not been
2 present in Krajina for a long while. If he did write anything, I'm not
3 aware of it, nor was it a part of the RSK state security.
4 Q. Thank you. Now, how many times do you think, if at all, you have
5 met Mr. Stanisic in your life?
6 A. I have met him in person. Perhaps on four to five occasions we
7 happened to be in the same place at the same time, and those were usually
8 meetings. In other words, we never met privately. We never socialised.
9 Q. Have you ever received an instruction or an order from him,
10 directly or indirectly?
11 A. No. I had never received any orders from him, nor would he have
12 been able to issue us with any. We were an autonomous service.
13 Q. Now, I want to speak to you about finances and the supplies to
14 the RSK MUP and the supplies to the state security of the SAO Krajina.
15 MR. JORDASH: It is a new subject, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, if it's a new subject, perhaps we rather leave
17 it for tomorrow.
18 One clarifying question.
19 Could you tell us - you said you were at the same place with
20 Mr. Stanisic four or five times, do you remember where that was?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Most of these meetings took place
22 on Petrova Gora, in the Pauk HQ. There were a couple of meetings in
23 Belgrade as well. All this was in charge of Mr. Martic who asked that
24 Mr. Milosevic help him with putting together personnel. And since we
25 were marking the start of these training courses, and there was a
1 celebration, and I joined Mr. Martic, and Mr. Stanisic was there.
2 Everybody was there.
3 JUDGE ORIE: We will adjourn for the day. And we will resume
4 tomorrow, the - let me see - the 2nd of February, if I'm not mistaken, at
5 9.00 in the morning in this same courtroom, II. We'd like to see you
6 back then. And I again instruct you that you should not speak or
7 communicate in any other way with whomever about your testimony, whether
8 already given or still to be given.
9 We stand adjourned.
10 [The witness stands down]
11 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.45 p.m.,
12 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 2nd day of
13 February, 2012, at 9.00 a.m.