1 Wednesday, 22 February 2012
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.08 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 Mr. Seovac, I would like to remind you that the solemn
13 declaration you gave yesterday, that you'll speak the truth, the whole
14 truth, and nothing but the truth, is still binding upon you.
15 WITNESS: RISTO SEOVAC [Resumed]
16 [Witness answered through interpreter]
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Farr, are you ready to proceed? I think
18 yesterday we -- although we adjourned in open session, we were in private
19 session. It was not at your request that we returned in open session.
20 What is the position?
21 MR. FARR: I'm continuing on the same topic, so we should be in
22 private session, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Private session.
24 Then we move into private session.
25 [Private session]
11 Pages 17598-17628 redacted. Private session.
12 [Open session]
13 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
15 MR. JORDASH: Thank you.
16 Your Honour, during the break the Prosecution disclosed a
17 document relating to Operation Drina. It's a public security department
18 of the Serbian Ministry of the Interior document dated the
19 4th of March, 1994, sent to, it appears, the Bajina Basta border control
20 police station. The first paragraph, let me -- if I may just read the
21 first paragraph, because that's the crux of Operation Drina:
22 "Since the commencement of Operation Drina, we have attained
23 significant but still unsatisfactory results in cutting off illegal
24 routes, discovering the organizers of and persons involved in the illegal
25 transfer of persons of Muslim and Croatian ethnicity. Weapons, goods,
1 cattle, and other items from the Republika Srpska to the FRY and vice
3 Now, it's our case that Operation Drina was, indeed, aimed at
4 these objectives. On the face of it, aimed at the objectives of
5 preventing Muslims and Croats from being transferred from the
6 Republika Srpska to Serbia. And that operation existed for a long time
7 before the Srebrenica operation, before March of 1994, when this document
8 is dated. And what we suggest has happened here during the examination
9 of this witness is that the Prosecution have taken a very small part of
10 Operation Drina, July of 1995, ignored the rest, and said, Look, this is
11 just you, Serbian MUP, Serbian DB, transferring Muslims back to death,
12 certain death, in Srebrenica. A very partial picture, we would say.
13 Now, we have requested from the National Council, on two
14 occasions at least, evidence of Operation Drina because, on the face of
15 it, it's exculpatory. We've received answers from them saying, No, we
16 don't have that documentation.
17 This document is now being disclosed to us by the Prosecution.
18 On the face of it, it is extremely exculpatory and it has not been
19 disclosed until today, despite Operation Drina being an operation which
20 is figured in this trial.
21 So the first point I make is simply to register our concern about
22 the way that the examination progressed in light of what the Prosecution
23 knew about Operation Drina, knew but had not disclosed to us. And
24 secondly, to make a formal request that the Prosecution -- and I
25 discussed this with Mr. Farr. But to make a formal request that the
1 Prosecution disclose everything they have on Operation Drina to the
2 Defence. And when I say "everything," I mean documents which demonstrate
3 a consistent pattern of returning Muslim persons or Croat persons from
4 the FRY back to the Republika Srpska at a time -- throughout 1994. Any
5 other evidence suggesting that this was a consistent pattern and not
6 simply isolated to the operations around Srebrenica in July of 1995.
7 It's our submission that once Your Honour sees this, Your Honour
8 will take a different view about the evidence that we've heard over the
9 last hour.
10 I would only add one further thing, which is that this document
11 that the Prosecution have disclosed, at paragraph 7 makes it very clear
12 the limited role that the DB had, or was anticipated to have, noting that
13 for the sake of more effective processing, establish direct co-operation
14 with the other work lines, and one of those work lines included the
15 State Security Department. Operation Drina, it is our case, was a public
16 security operation. The DB assisted within its line of work which was
17 intelligence gathering. And that's why this import -- this document,
18 this issue, is critical, we say, to the Defence.
19 Thank you for the time, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Jordash.
21 Do you intend to tender that document?
22 MR. JORDASH: Yes, please.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Because there is, of course -- you consider it
24 to be exculpatory evidence. I can imagine that to make a final
25 assessment of that you may have to combine the practice with the rules,
1 if, for example, just -- if -- if the rule would be there, it would never
2 be reported apart from July 1995, it might look different from if there
3 was a steady line of reporting which makes the reporting in July 1995 a
4 rather routine matter in line with what had happened already for years.
5 So, therefore, I'm not at this moment yet finally in a position
6 to -- and I'm not asked to assess whether this is exculpatory yes or no.
7 I'm saying this because if it is exculpatory, then, of course, it
8 is material which should have been disclosed earlier, pursuant to the
9 Rules. And that triggers Rule 67(D), which provides that the party who
10 was under an obligation to disclose should not only disclose it to you
11 but should also disclose it to the Chamber.
12 MR. JORDASH: Yes.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Now, that is a bit of a -- to say the least, is a
14 bit of a nasty rule because the disclosure to the Chamber could have some
15 side effects, the Chamber becoming aware of matters which are not
16 tendered as evidence even before the party who claims that it may be
17 exculpatory evidence has seen it, which is something which -- which may
18 have negative effects as well, where, of course, it is intended to have a
19 positive effect for the party who considers it to be exculpatory. But
20 since you say, We'd like to tender the document, there's no problem for
21 the Chamber to receive it.
22 MR. JORDASH: Your Honour, yes. And, Your Honour, I think it
23 would be fair, with Your Honours' leave, if the witness had an
24 opportunity to read it and perhaps some questions to be asked, if I may.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I take it you're going to tender the document.
1 You're informed about it during the break so there is, I think, good
2 cause that you only come with it now.
3 Unless you would disagree, Mr. Farr.
4 MR. FARR: We would have no objection, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
6 Now, the other discussion is about additional disclosure of
7 matters which the Defence claims is exculpatory material.
8 Have reached agreement on disclosure of such material?
9 MR. FARR: Your Honour, we interpret that as a Rule 66(B)
10 request. The Stanisic Defence has made a great number of Rule 66(B)
11 requests in this case. And we are happy to do that. Yes, we'll look
12 into those matters and we'll see what we can --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Well, let me ...
14 You say whether it's exculpatory or not, at least it is -- these
15 are documents in the Prosecutor's custody or control which are material
16 to the preparation of the Defence, and ...
17 Now, I think most important at this moment is that the Defence is
18 provided with that material. Whether under Rule 68 or Rule 66(B),
19 it's -- the Chamber is not asked at this moment to determine that matter.
20 MR. JORDASH: Well, Your Honour, I wasn't going to ask you to
21 deal with that matter, but if the Prosecution are going to persist with
22 the notion that this is not exculpatory and that it is incumbent upon us
23 to apply pursuant to Rule 66(B), then I will ask for a ruling. Because,
24 in our respectful submission, it is as plain as it can be, on the face of
25 this document, that issues relating to operation Drina are exculpatory.
1 It says in the document that the Serbian MUP were engaged in
2 preventing the illegal transfer of persons of Muslim and Croat ethnicity
3 from the Republika Srpska to the FRY. I -- I -- I find it very difficult
4 to imagine a document which is more exculpatory on its face, given the
5 nature of the allegations in this case. We are not seeking to -- to have
6 the Prosecution sanctioned or any extreme remedy, but we do want to
7 acknowledge that a mistake has been made. Throughout this case
8 Mr. Groome has been, as far as we can see, extremely upfront with
9 disclosure, but it seems as though a mistake has been made in this case,
10 and I think it's important that the Prosecution at least acknowledge that
11 and agree that issues relating to Operation Drina are exculpatory.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Farr.
13 MR. FARR: Your Honour, the definition of what constitutes
14 exculpatory evidence under the law of the Tribunal is very broad, and I
15 agree with Mr. Jordash that under that jurisprudence this document could
16 be characterised as Rule 68, and it's -- it's --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. So if you disclose it --
18 MR. FARR: -- reasonable that other -- other documents related to
19 Operation Drina would also be characterised as Rule 68.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Which now means that the claim by the Defence
21 that Action Drina documents are within Rule -- within the scope of
22 Rule 68(i), that the Prosecution accepts that it failed to disclose it.
23 It has not been disclosed?
24 MR. FARR: It has now, Your Honour. Yep.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but it has not been disclosed neither as
1 specifically under Rule 68. Was it in the electronic disclosure?
2 MR. FARR: I -- I don't know, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE ORIE: That -- that's perhaps -- well, first of all, of
4 course, there is an obligation to disclose, specifically as Rule 68,
5 material, any exculpatory material, and not to hide it somewhere in the
6 huge amount of electronic disclosure. At the same time, it -- for an
7 assessment of the seriousness of the failure to do that, it may be
8 relevant to know whether it has been disclosed in the EDS system --
9 MR. FARR: And, Your Honour --
10 JUDGE ORIE: -- or to be kept away.
11 MR. FARR: -- I would like to -- [Microphone not activated] --
12 MR. JORDASH: Absolutely. And as I said, we're not seeking to
13 pursue this in any way. We accept that if the Prosecution agree to that
14 it's exculpatory and they'll disclose in the usual way, we expect, as is
15 consistent in this case, that that will happen.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. So, therefore, the Chamber has no role at
17 this moment further to play in it.
18 MR. JORDASH: Your Honour, yes.
19 MR. FARR: And, Your Honour, just to be clear: It is our belief
20 that when this document is looked at in the context of all of the
21 evidence it is going to broadly support the Prosecution case.
22 The difficulty is in the broadness of the definition of what
23 constitutes exculpatory evidence under Rule 68. But I just wanted to add
24 that comment.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Well, it's not uncommon in criminal procedure that
1 the one party considers the material to be incriminating, whereas another
2 party sees it more as exculpatory. And that is something for final
3 argument rather than for the admission of evidence.
4 Mr. Petrovic.
5 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, with your leave, I
6 support everything my colleague Mr. Jordash said, and I emphasise that
7 the violation by the Prosecution of the rule that they must disclose
8 exculpatory material has affected the Defence in preparing for this
9 witness. If we had had this document, we would have had a chance to
10 review it and put to the witness more detailed questions. As it is, the
11 document turned up in the course of his testimony, and this may result in
12 negative consequences when it comes to the evaluation of this witness's
13 testimony by the Trial Chamber. That is why I'm underlining this
14 omission that I believe happened here.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Well, that matter is now clear. It is on the
17 Is a translation available of that document?
18 MR. FARR: Your Honour, both the original and the translation
19 have been uploaded as 63-- 65 ter 6396.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then we'll have a look at it soon, I take it.
21 I'm abusing the absence of the witness to deal with a few other
23 The first is: Mr. Petrovic, yesterday you said that you couldn't
24 say anything about scheduling of witnesses, arrival of witnesses,
25 et cetera, without having consulted with Mr. Bakrac.
1 Is there any further information you could provide to the
3 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
4 We have discussed it. We shall be calling the first witness as
5 announced, DFS-015, with the proviso that all the facts and all the
6 circumstances we cited in our submission dated 20th February this year
7 will have repercussions on our ability to adequately hear this witness.
8 But we have understood your order, and we are abiding by it.
9 Our associates are in the field as we speak, and they are trying
10 to make sure that the witness travels here as soon as possible and gives
11 evidence as soon as we finish with the witness who is supposed to start
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And any further horizon in scheduling?
14 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, our horizon is dark
15 enough as it is to enable us to give further estimates, but we are doing
16 our very best. I'm saying even this witness, DFS-015, will be giving
17 evidence very much burdened by the problems we presented in our
18 submission. But, of course, we are not questioning the decisions of the
19 Trial Chamber. We have always tried, and are trying now, to abide by all
20 your decisions. But we are just trying to underline the problems that
21 exist. But in this matter, as in everything else, we are completely in
22 your hands.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Ms. Marcus.
24 MS. MARCUS: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Two follow-up questions. First of all, I'd just like to confirm
1 that we would get the documents for DSF-015 today. We did send an e-mail
2 earlier today that if he is to start possibly as early as Tuesday next
3 week, today is six days before. That's one question.
4 The second question is: We would appreciate knowing as soon as
5 possible whether DFS-016 is to follow DFS-015. In light of the
6 substantial nature of the evidence associated with that witness, we would
7 very much appreciate advanced notice.
8 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I really cannot
9 answer the first question. We will try to do it as soon as possible, but
10 that will certainly not be possible within the next two or three days. I
11 really cannot make any promises, because any promise I made would not be
12 serious and could not be honoured. If you make a promise, you have to
13 make good on it.
14 As for the other matter, I'm saying that we are estimating our
15 abilities all the time. And as soon as we are able to say anything about
16 DFS-017 [as interpreted], we will do so.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Whether that is an answer which is acceptable
18 in the view of the Chamber, we'll consider that, Mr. Petrovic. It is an
20 Then, the time estimate for Witness DFS-012. Mr. Petrovic, could
21 you give us any -- let's -- I think you had three and a half hours
22 in-chief. Does that still apply? And how much time -- [Microphone not
24 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... do the other
1 parties need?
2 MS. MARCUS: The same for us, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
4 MR. JORDASH: Two hours, please.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Two hours. Which brings us to a total of nine
7 Ms. Marcus, you asked for oral submissions to make on the
8 Stanisic bar table motions. We will give you an opportunity to do that
9 after we finish this witness.
10 MS. MARCUS: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE ORIE: And if I forget about it, then please remind me.
12 MR. JORDASH: Your Honour, sorry, I misspoke. I think we would
13 only need one hour, please.
14 JUDGE ORIE: One hour. Which results in a total of eight hours.
15 Yes. Mr. Petrovic, are you also intending to tender the -- the
16 Action Drina document?
17 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then, if you would do that as soon as possible
19 so that we can have a look at it as well. That's ... because as long as
20 it's not tendered, if it's just uploaded, we have no access to it yet.
21 Then, could the witness be brought into the courtroom again --
22 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm sorry. I believe
23 this document about the Drina operation has been uploaded. That's what I
24 understood from my learned friend, and we can see it immediately. It's
25 65 ter 6396 from the Prosecution.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but that doesn't mean that we, the Chamber, has
2 automatically access. It's not that the Chamber has access to all
3 documents you've uploaded, because otherwise we could start gathering --
4 MR. PETROVIC: [No interpretation]
5 JUDGE ORIE: -- our own evidence from the e-court system, and
6 that's not what it's intended for.
7 MR. FARR: Your Honour, I do have extra hard copies, if the
8 Chamber would like one.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, perhaps you could distribute hard copies.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 MR. JORDASH: Your Honour, we can hear you.
12 MS. MARCUS: Your Honour --
13 [Trial Chamber confers]
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, before we continue, still in relation to -- to
15 scheduling and the motion, could the Simatovic Defence provide the
16 Chamber with detailed information, that is, in great detail, about the
17 two witnesses who are still abroad at this moment, and where the
18 Simatovic Defence has indicated that after having further interviewed
19 them they would make up their mind as whether or not they would seek them
20 to be added to the 65 ter list.
21 What the Chamber would very much like to know is when you, for
22 the first time, addressed the respective government, in time. Was that
23 last August? Was that three weeks ago? Detailed information when you
24 got a response, what that response was, et cetera, because the Chamber
25 wants to carefully analyse whether due diligence was exercised in
1 approaching the authorities and the witness.
2 So a very clear, transparent time path, including the content of
3 the communication with either the relevant government or the witness.
4 That is one.
5 Then we have another request. In view of further scheduling and
6 the request by the Simatovic Defence for -- for additional time,
7 Mr. Jordash, the Chamber wonders what will happen to the remaining
8 witnesses you have on your list, including Mr. Brown. Because we
9 might -- we might consider to find a kind of a time path which would
10 meet, if any, or some of the concerns expressed by the Simatovic Defence,
11 and the availability of your witnesses might come into play there as
13 MR. JORDASH: Well, there's two -- two issues.
14 One is the -- the motion that we filed, so that's one issue.
15 The other issue is that we -- we have tried to contact Mr. Brown
16 I think three times yesterday, but he's not well, just to find out when
17 he can get here. We're hoping that he can come here at the Court's --
18 relatively at the Court's convenience to fill in any gap.
19 I spoke to the Prosecution about when Mr. Brown could come, and
20 we -- like I say, we've been trying to get in touch with him. And we'll
21 hopefully be able to report back to the Chamber tomorrow on that issue.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We'd like to hear.
23 And there was one other witness, isn't it?
24 MR. JORDASH: And it's Sir Ivor Roberts. He was very specific
25 when he could come. The precise dates, it was towards the end of March.
1 What I will undertake to do is contact him immediately and have some
2 final dates so that the Court can --
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
4 MR. JORDASH: -- schedule for -- [Overlapping speakers] ...
5 JUDGE ORIE: Of course, there should be a fair balance between
6 make yourself available for a duty to testify and, on the other hand, to
7 consider any personal concerns the witness may have in terms of other
8 commitments. We try to balance that, but --
9 MR. JORDASH: Certainly, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE ORIE: -- it should be a balance --
11 MR. JORDASH: I completely agree, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE ORIE: -- not -- not a one-sided approach.
13 Then please update us on these matters as soon as possible.
14 And then I think that we could ...
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE ORIE: Could you tell us, Mr. Petrovic, the exact -- the
17 detailed information about approaching a government, approaching a
18 witness, when could you provide that?
19 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, today before the end
20 of business, or no later than tomorrow morning.
21 JUDGE ORIE: That is appreciated. We are looking forward to
22 receive that information.
23 Then, the witness can be brought into the courtroom again.
24 [The witness takes the stand]
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Seovac, I hope you got some coffee or tea.
1 Mr. Petrovic, please proceed.
2 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
3 Can we go into private session for a brief moment, Your Honours.
4 JUDGE ORIE: We turn -- we go into private session.
5 [Private session]
11 Pages 17644-17662 redacted. Private session.
2 [Open session]
3 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
5 Mr. Seovac, this concludes your testimony in this court. I would
6 like to thank you very much for coming to The Hague and for answering the
7 questions that were put to you by the parties and by the Bench, and I
8 wish you a safe return home again, and I'm happy that you can leave
9 within the expected time you wished to leave.
10 You may follow the usher.
11 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
12 [The witness withdrew]
13 JUDGE ORIE: It's time for a break anyhow.
14 Now, we can do two things: give an opportunity to Ms. Marcus to
15 address us on the matter she wanted to raise after the break. Another
16 way of dealing with that would be - it's a rather technical matter - to
17 ask -- to invite Ms. Marcus to do it now and to fully accept if
18 Mr. Stanisic and/or Mr. Simatovic would already take their break a bit
19 earlier. We could then take a break of 25 minutes for ourselves and
20 30 minutes for Mr. Stanisic and/or Mr. Simatovic.
21 MR. JORDASH: Mr. Stanisic would like to go, and we could
22 continue, please.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And then I leave it to Mr. Simatovic whether
24 he wants to stay or whether he wants to leave with Mr. Stanisic.
25 [The Accused Stanisic withdrew]
1 JUDGE ORIE: Ms. Marcus, brief, please.
2 MS. MARCUS: Thank you, Your Honour. Yes, I'll do my best.
3 The Prosecution at this time provides an oral request for a
4 three-week extension to provide its responses to the Stanisic Defence
5 composite bar table motions which were filed on the 17th of February.
6 The present due date would be the 2nd of March. We request an
7 extension for the consolidated response until the 23rd of March.
8 As listed in the annexes to the motion, the bar table motions
9 collectively seek the admission of over 650 documents. Now, we received
10 notice of a potential 193 documents on the 13th of December, an
11 additional 189 documents on the 19th of December, and finally an
12 additional 346 documents on the 31st of January. The Defence then
13 subsequently notified us on the 17th of February that they would not seek
14 the admission of approximately 46 of these documents.
15 We request the three-week extension because we believe it could
16 provide a timely -- I'm sorry. At this time we believe that we could
17 provide, by the deadline set, a timely response to the materials noticed
18 in December. However, we request the extension for the purposes of
19 filing a composite response to all of them together for the following
20 reasons: We believe that a composite response on all of the materials
21 would allow us to make more efficient submissions on all of the documents
22 at once and avoid repetitive arguments and detailed cross-referencing
23 between difference motions and different lists.
24 Second, the most recent batch of documents, which were disclosed
25 on the 31st of January and then revised on the 17th of February, contain
1 the bulk of the documents. That's been 346 documents. Some of these
2 documents are very voluminous. For example, I draw Your Honours'
3 attention to there are 38 SDC minutes, some of which reach over 100 pages
4 each, and there are also RS Assembly minutes, some of which are over
5 200 pages each.
6 For these reasons the Prosecution respectfully requests that the
7 Trial Chamber grant us a three-week extension to file our responses in a
8 composite fashion by the 23rd of March, 2012.
9 Thank you.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stanisic [sic], do you have already a reaction?
11 MR. JORDASH: We don't -- we don't object to the Prosecution's
13 JUDGE ORIE: You don't object.
14 I'm always thinking one step further. Ms. Marcus, a composite
15 response to be received three weeks after the initial deadline will
16 certainly result in the Stanisic Defence asking for more time as well.
17 It appears that you have made up your mind already on the first batch.
18 Is there any way that you -- to the extent you have finalised
19 your thoughts on that, that already a courtesy copy could be provided to
20 the Stanisic Defence so as to avoid any delays at a later stage?
21 Have you considered that? Let me put the question.
22 MS. MARCUS: Thank you, Your Honour. I think the issue is that
23 there are overlapping cross-cutting issues in all the bar table motions
24 which we could together respond to. So whereas we could probably provide
25 some comments on a document-by-document basis on the first bar table
1 motion, that would be in a very preliminary draft form. It wouldn't
2 contain all our arguments. It wouldn't contain all the
3 cross-referencing. We could give them an idea of what we plan to do. I
4 don't think it would be complete. It would be like giving them a
5 preliminary draft. And we could endeavour to do that -- endeavour to do
6 that by the deadline set.
7 I mean, my strong preference, Your Honour, both in terms of --
8 I'm considering other -- other things, other pending matters in the case
9 and how stretched we are, Your Honours, to be frank, I would like to
10 reiterate my request for a delay on that. But what we could do,
11 Your Honours, is to say that perhaps even after the 2nd of March, as soon
12 as feasible, we could provide them with -- prior to the -- if we -- if
13 Your Honours so grant our extension, that we would endeavour to provide,
14 as soon as feasible, at least a preliminary draft in relation to the
15 first bar table documents. But I cannot at this time -- well, with
16 Your Honours' leave, we would prefer not have to the deadline of March
17 2nd for that -- that portion either.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's clear to me. The Chamber will consider
19 it. It's of some concern, the volume of the materials. Not only of
20 concern to the Prosecution, but also to the Chamber.
21 MR. JORDASH: Could --
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jordash.
23 MR. JORDASH: I mean, I don't want to take this as an absolute
24 commitment, but it's unlikely that we will want to or we need to respond
25 in any great detail to the Prosecution's response. We've made the
1 comments that we want to make about the relevance and probative value of
2 the documents thus far.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. So if the problems at the next step would be
4 less, the problems at the first step are still there.
5 MR. JORDASH: True.
6 JUDGE ORIE: We take a break. And we resume at a quarter to
8 --- Recess taken at 12.25 p.m.
9 [The Accused Stanisic entered court]
10 --- On resuming at 12.50 p.m.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Is the Simatovic Defence ready to call its next
13 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, we are ready.
14 And could we please have Mr. Mladen Karan brought into the
16 JUDGE ORIE: No protective measures, Mr. Bakrac?
17 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. No.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness be escorted into the courtroom.
19 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
20 [The witness entered court]
21 JUDGE ORIE: Good afternoon, witness.
22 Before you give evidence, the Rules require you to make a solemn
23 declaration. Could you please make that solemn declaration.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
25 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
1 WITNESS: MLADEN KARAN
2 [Witness answered through interpreter]
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. Please be seated.
4 Mr. Karan, you will be first examined by Mr. Bakrac. Mr. Bakrac
5 is counsel for Mr. Simatovic.
6 Mr. Bakrac, you may proceed.
7 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Examination by Mr. Bakrac:
9 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Karan.
10 A. Good afternoon.
11 Q. Could you please introduce yourself for the record. First tell
12 us your name, when you were born, and where you were born.
13 A. I was born on the 16th of September, 1956.
14 Q. And where were you born?
15 A. In Vojnic, municipality of Vojnic, in the Republic of Croatia.
16 Q. And now, Mr. Karan, can you tell us what your profession is.
17 A. I'm a retired officer.
18 Q. Can you tell us, What was your rank when you were pensioned off?
19 A. I was a colonel.
20 Q. Mr. Karan, can you briefly tell us something about your
21 educational background and about your first employment.
22 A. I completed elementary school in Vojnic. I completed the
23 military secondary school in Belgrade from 1981 to 1985. Then I attended
24 the Military Academy from 1985 to 1989. My speciality was
25 communications. And when I say communications, I mean electronic
1 communications. I was trained to command and control communications
2 units, radio relay units, and units that were engaged in radio and
3 telephone communications.
4 Q. Thank you, Mr. Karan. When you completed military secondary
5 school, did you start working at the JNA? And if that was the case,
7 A. I did that after graduating from the academy. My first garrison
8 was in Bijeljina. I was in the communications regiment at the command
9 post of the 7th Army.
10 Q. Can you tell us briefly, but just briefly, what you did before
11 1990. I'm talking about your military career.
12 A. I was at the Bijeljina garrison. I was the squadron company
13 commander until 1986. Then I joined the security organs, and I
14 discharged duties at the security organ until 1988. And then in 1988 I
15 was reassigned to work at the counter-intelligence group of the
16 17th Corps, the Tuzla garrison. Soon after that, from the Tuzla
17 garrison, from the counter-intelligence group of the 17th Corps, I was
18 transferred to the security administration, to the
19 1st counter-intelligence division. That was the Federal Secretariat for
20 National Defence.
21 Q. Mr. Karan, can you please slow down, and can you wait for my
22 question to be translated.
23 You said that from the 17th Corps you were transferred, as it
24 says here, to the 1st counter-intelligence division.
25 A. No, it was not a division.
1 Q. From the 17th Corps, where did you go?
2 A. From the 17 Corps, I was transferred to the
3 Security Administration of the Federal Secretariat for National Defence.
4 The first section that dealt with counter-intelligence work and
5 amalgamating the counter-intelligence work of all JNA units and JNA
6 structures at the level of the Socialist Federative Republic of
8 Q. Mr. Karan, when did you start working in this position at the
9 Federal Secretariat for National Defence?
10 A. The takeover lasted for some two or three months. That was in
11 late 1989. One could say that.
12 Q. Can you tell us what duties you discharged in 1990 -- or, rather,
13 in late 1989/early 1990.
14 A. In the first section of the Security Administration, I dealt with
15 extreme enemy emigration, which involved all emigration groups except for
16 the Albanian emigration groups.
17 Q. Why do you say all emigrations but Albanian emigration?
18 A. Because somebody else was in charge of the Albanian emigration.
19 Q. How long did you stay discharging those duties?
20 A. I remained in that position up to the moment I received an order
21 to be assigned to the Guards Motorised Brigade, which was on the
22 positions around Vukovar at that time. That was sometime in mid -- or,
23 rather, beginning of September 1991.
24 Q. In September 1991, as you said, you arrived and joined the
25 Guards Brigade that was already deployed around Vukovar. What position
1 did you take there?
2 A. I was appointed as the assistant for counter-intelligence.
3 Q. Did they tell you why you were left from the Federal Secretariat
4 for National Defence to join this brigade?
5 A. Yes. At the beginning of September, the heads -- the head of
6 the -- heads of the security services invited me for a meeting,
7 Vasiljevic, Tomanov [phoen]. And since I was the lowest ranking officer
8 in the Security Administration at that time, and I had already been an
9 experienced operative, they told me that I had to go to the
10 Guards Motorised Brigade in Vukovar to improve operative work there, and
11 particularly the -- the security organs's reporting practices.
12 Q. Can you tell us what was the area of responsibility of your
13 brigade in respect of Slavonia, Vukovar, and the entire region?
14 A. The Guards Motorised Brigade was part of the South OG that
15 consisted of some other units, and it was deployed south of Vukovar.
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Karan. When you arrived in Slavonia, were
17 territorial units already in existence there?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Can you tell us, How were they organised in comparison with the
21 A. The Territorial Defence was organised according to the principle
22 of republics. Each republic had its own Territorial Defence
24 Q. I apologise for interrupting you, Mr. Karan. Just briefly - we
25 don't have much room for a lengthy discussion about that - just briefly,
1 what was the relationship between the Territorial Defence organisations
2 and the JNA at the moment when you arrived in the area?
3 A. At that time there were already indications that an immediate
4 threat of war would be declared, and soon thereafter a decision to that
5 effect was made by the Supreme Command. And that decision itself meant
6 that the Territorial Defence and other structures fell under the JNA
8 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to call
9 up P1089.
10 Q. Mr. Karan, now you have just told us that there were rumours at
11 the time when you arrived in September, that there were rumours that very
12 soon there would be a declaration of the immediate threat of war.
13 Let's look at a document, and then I'm going to ask you something
14 about it.
15 It seems that this document was sent from the command of the
16 1st Military District to the Military District in Sarajevo. Let's look
17 at the first paragraph.
18 Would that tally with what you are telling us; namely, that on
19 the 3rd of October, 1991, it was established that the state is threatened
20 by war and that certain measures had to be undertaken, put in place, in
21 order to defend the country?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Could you please look at paragraph 3. Read it for yourself
24 quickly to avoid wasting time. And then we will talk about paragraph 3
25 after you've done that.
1 A. Done.
2 Q. Thank you. Mr. Karan, at that moment did many people volunteer
3 to join JNA units? And if that was the case, why?
4 A. It is commonly known that whenever there is a political turmoil
5 like there was in the entire territory of the -- of the former
6 Yugoslavia, there was a lot of desertion from JNA units by both troops
7 and officers, starting with Slovenians, Croats, Muslims, and finally
8 Albanians, and so on and so forth. In order for those units to continue
9 functioning normally, a wide drive was organised to attract recruits and
10 volunteers to send them to the existing commands and to establish new war
12 Q. Mr. Karan, when you arrived in Slavonia, did you learn during
13 your stay in Slavonia about the area of responsibility of the
14 Novi Sad Corps? And if that is the case, what was their area of
16 A. Yes. They were deployed north of Vukovar all the way up to
17 Baranja, to the border with Hungary, in practical terms. That means that
18 they were deployed on the right and left banks of the Danube.
19 Q. Mr. Karan, do you know, at the time when you arrived Slavonia, do
20 you know if the Territorial Defence was functioning in the area?
21 A. Yes. At that time, Serbian Autonomous Districts had been
22 established in Croatia. In this case it was the Autonomous District of
23 Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem, and it had its own
24 Territorial Defence.
25 Q. Do you know who was the commander of the Territorial Defence of
1 Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem?
2 A. Yes. Radovan Stojicic, Badza.
3 Q. Let's be very precise for the record: We're talking about the
4 period of time when you were deployed there.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Do you know that in the area of responsibility of the
7 Novi Sad Corps, within the Territorial Defence, there was also a group of
8 volunteers led by Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan?
9 A. Yes. As a matter of fact, I learnt about that when I was still a
10 member of the Security Administration, because at our meetings we
11 discussed information about him.
12 Q. When you say that you discussed information, could be more
13 precise and tell us what you mean? What did you discuss?
14 A. We already had information that Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, had
15 placed himself under the command of the Territorial Defence, that he had
16 a training camp, and that he had been armed by the JNA from JNA depots.
17 Q. Did you also have information about who had enabled Arkan to
18 obtain weapons from JNA depots?
19 A. Yes, I did. General Simovic, who was appointed defence minister
20 of the Republic of Serbia, was the one.
21 Q. When you arrived in the territory of Slavonia and joined the
22 Guards Brigade, did you know about some joint operations that that group
23 of volunteers had participated in together with the JNA?
24 A. Yes, I did. They acted in concert from the direction of
25 North OG, and they were engaged around Tenja, Borovo Selo,
1 Borovo Naselje.
2 Q. Do you know what was the relationship between Arkan and members
3 of the Novi Sad Corps?
4 A. While I was a member of the first section, we knew that certain
5 highly ranking officers from the Novi Sad Corps maintained close
6 relations with Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan. Friendly relations.
7 In my section, this provoked all sorts of comments.
8 Q. When you said "all sorts of comments," can you explain? What do
9 you mean by that?
10 A. Yes, I can. Some of the officers believed and were of the
11 opinion that that was not a problem, that that relationship was not a
12 problem at all, fully believing that Raznjatovic was a patriot involved
13 in acts of patriotism, whereas others thought that it was not really
14 smart on the part of highly ranking officers to have their photos taken
15 with Arkan or developing such relations with a person with a rather
16 problematic past.
17 Q. Was there ever any decision made with regard to that?
18 A. I don't know, because it was just the collegium of the head of
19 the first section. And there was also a collegium of the whole
20 Security Administration, including all the four heads of sections. I
21 don't know if they made any decisions and what was done.
22 Q. This training camp that Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, kept in Erdut,
23 to what structure did it belong?
24 A. To the Territorial Defence of Slavonia, Baranja, and
25 Western Srem.
1 Q. In view of the decision we have seen proclaiming an immediate
2 threat of war, did Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, within the TO of Slavonia,
3 Baranja, and Western Srem, have a legal basis for participating together
4 with JNA units? In your opinion.
5 A. Yes. And it's not only in my opinion.
6 Q. Do you know who it was in the Novi Sad Corps that
7 Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, maintained contact? You said something about
8 the arming and Simovic.
9 A. I know that Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, had a close relationship,
10 first of all, with Mladen Bratic, who was commander of the Novi Sad Corps
11 until he got killed; with Boro Ivanovic, and he was Chief of Staff, I
12 think. And there was a general who replaced Bratic; I believe it was
13 Andrija Biorcevic.
14 Q. I understand that area was not part of your area of
15 responsibility, but did you have any information that security organs
16 received some reports about the conduct of Arkan's volunteers?
17 A. No, no. We in the Guards Motorised Brigade were not linked to
18 the General Staff of the JNA. Our unit was linked directly with the
19 Federal Secretariat for National Defence, and we had no access to
20 information on that level.
21 Q. Mr. Karan, since you are a military man and you worked in the
22 security branch, I would like to look at one document with you.
23 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] It's P1079.
24 Q. Please read it. It's one and a half page long. And let me know
25 one you've done.
1 THE REGISTRAR: [Previous translation continues] ... this is under
2 seal, Your Honours.
3 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I see it's under
4 seal. It's not to be broadcast.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've read it.
6 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Second page, please.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've read it.
8 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Thank you, Mr. Karan.
10 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, could we move back to
11 page one.
12 Q. It says here, in the letterhead: Security Organ, KVOk, Novi Sad.
13 Could you just tell us what it means, "KVOk, Novi Sad."
14 A. That's the command of the Military District, Novi Sad.
15 Q. Could you tell me if you have ever come across reports of this
16 type in your operative work, and what is the degree of reliability of
17 such information?
18 A. The document that I'm looking at right now was not usual and
19 would be rather rare in the reporting of the security organ towards the
20 superior command. And by that I mean that reports as the initial type of
21 reporting on an interesting event is usually based on personal
22 observation by the security organ or on information received from
23 speaking to two or three sources, and, therefore, the degree of
24 reliability of such information is low.
25 Q. When the security organ, an intelligence officer, receives such
1 information, what is the procedure that follows? What steps are taken?
2 A. I have to observe that this document simply strayed into the
3 Security Administration. Because if things had been done this way in all
4 JNA structures, then the Security Administration would have been deluged
5 by unreliable information.
6 I see here that the security organ reports that somebody was
7 killed, and then I see further on that the man wasn't killed, but
8 wounded. Precisely to prevent such things from happening, and that's why
9 I said in the first place that this type of report is unusual, security
10 organs made the so-called note on the application of work methods as the
11 basic document in reporting to their superior command. And that document
12 is essentially different from report, or information, as it is called
14 Q. Let me stop you there.
15 Could you tell us briefly whether this note on the application of
16 work methods, is it a higher degree of verification than report?
17 A. I said it was the primary document produced by security organs.
18 And as such, it was the most frequent form of reporting, because it
19 requires initial information to be verified, and it comes to the
20 Security Administration as true. And it requires additional work on the
21 part of the security organ to find out more about any threats to the
22 units of the ministry --
23 Q. Mr. Karan, I'm sorry to interrupt --
24 A. Just one more sentence.
25 Q. Just tell me, what does this note on work methods imply? Which
1 steps, what type of specific action does it include for the purpose of
2 verifying reports?
3 A. It involves a series of actions that are more complex than just
4 talking to a source. It includes verification of the initial report,
5 identification, work with agents on the ground or sources on the ground.
6 And in order to document things, it could involve surveillance,
7 wire-tapping, but -- because if a certain activity cannot be stopped or
8 prevented, then it remains just a dead letter in a report.
9 Q. Before you went to Slavonia and after you returned from Slavonia
10 did you receive any intelligence in the form that you described about the
11 activities of the Serbian Guards and other volunteers?
12 A. No.
13 Q. To make it clearer to the Trial Chamber, and for the record: You
14 did not receive them because there was no such information, or because
15 you were involved in a different line of work after you returned from
17 A. When I returned from Slavonia, I was in the Guards Brigade, in
18 the Belgrade garrison. We had no access to such information. Whether
19 the Security Administration had such reports, I don't know.
20 Q. Thank you, Mr. Karan.
21 To conclude this part on Slavonia: When did you return from
22 Slavonia, and why? When I say "returned," I mean to Belgrade.
23 A. We returned around the 26th November. That's about eight days
24 after the fall of Vukovar.
25 Q. Mr. Karan, while you were still there, in Slavonia, in Vukovar,
1 you said your area was the Operation Zone South. As an operative, did
2 you have knowledge that in that area, the Operation Zone South, there was
3 a unit of the state security of Serbia?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Thank you, Mr. Karan.
6 Upon your return to Belgrade, to what position did you come back;
7 and how long did you hold that position?
8 A. I returned to the same position from which I was sent to
9 Slavonia. That is, assistant for counter-intelligence. And I remained
10 there until the summer 1992.
11 Q. Let me just stop you here.
12 You say "assistant for counter-intelligence." Where?
13 A. In the Guards Brigade.
14 Q. And then?
15 A. In the summer of 1992, I transferred to the security section of
16 the office of the Federal Secretary [as interpreted] for
17 National Defence. It was still called secretariat, not ministry.
18 Q. How long did you remain in that position?
19 A. Until 15 October 1993.
20 Q. What happened on the 15th of October, 1993?
21 A. On October 15, 1993, I was sent to the Serbian Army of Krajina.
22 Q. When you say "sent to the Serbian Army of Krajina," can you tell
23 us who sent you, and how?
24 A. In fact, I was supposed to be at the Main Staff in Knin on
25 8 October, but I was invited to a meeting organised between
1 General Perisic and General Novakovic with officers who were natives of
2 Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and it was decided at that meeting
3 that two buses of such officers would go to Knin.
4 My superior in the security section of the minister's office told
5 me that I have to report there, and if I failed to report to Knin, that
6 will be treated as my application to terminate my military service.
7 Q. We have received in disclosure some diaries by Mr. Mladic.
8 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] 65 ter 5605. I would like to call
9 that document now.
10 Q. It's about a meeting in Dobanovci on 19 October 1993. Page 387
11 in B/C/S. In the English version, it's 389.
12 Mr. Karan, while we're waiting, could you just tell me one thing:
13 There was a meeting - there is a little asterisk, number 5 - where
14 Perisic seems to say, from this diary:
15 "All officers born in BH and Croatia are to be sent to
16 Republika Srpska and Republika Srpska Krajina, and those who don't want
17 to will be expelled from the Army of Yugoslavia. We will use any means
18 to send them there. And in 1994 and 1995 we'll expel them, we'll drive
19 them away!"
20 Was this the way he was addressing you personally and you other
22 A. Yes. I mentioned the 8th of October. Sometime around the
23 10 of October, 1993, that meeting took place at the military school
24 centre. There were some 200 or 300 officers there who were born in the
25 territory of the former BH or Croatia. And General Perisic showered us
1 with insults there, and as a result two buses were hired to take people
2 to the RSK. How many people actually went, I don't know. In any case,
3 on the 15th about 80 officers were dispatched to Knin.
4 Q. Mr. Karan, when you arrived in Knin together with the other
5 15 officers, who received you there; and what happened next?
6 A. We were received by Commander -- the commander of the Main Staff,
7 General Novakovic.
8 We got our assignments there. I was sent to the 21st Corps of
9 the Serbian Army of Krajina.
10 Q. When you say "the 21st Corps of the Serbian Army of Krajina," can
11 you also tell us what the area of responsibility of that corps was; and
12 what duties did you discharge there?
13 A. When I say the 21st Corps, I mean the Kordun Corps. Its area of
14 responsibility covered the municipalities of Slunj, Vojinic, and
15 Vrginmost. Which means, on the western side, on the right bank of the
16 Korana river, the Kupa River; and on the eastern side, along the
17 Glina river or, rather, along Velika Kladusa. That would be the
18 territory of Western Bosnia National Defence.
19 Q. Mr. Karan, what about Petrova Gora? Was it in the area of
20 responsibility of the 21st Corps?
21 A. Yes, it was.
22 Q. When you joined the 21st Corps, what duties did you discharge?
23 What was your scope of responsibilities?
24 A. I was the chief of security of the 21st Corps. I replaced
25 Lieutenant-Colonel Petar Surla. I was involved in counter-intelligence
1 support of the corps units. I dealt with the intelligence activities of
2 the enemy side, of the cases of defeatism, and similar things.
3 Q. When you arrived in the 21st Corps, what was the situation there?
4 A. I can only tell you about the security situation. That's all I
5 can tell you. And that situation, I can say, was rather bad, in terms of
6 the personnel and the organisation of work.
7 Q. Did you take any measures in order to deal with that; and what
8 measures were those?
9 A. Yes, I did. First, I assessed the situation, the security
10 situation, and then I decided to fire all brigade chiefs bar one. And to
11 appoint other people as security chiefs of brigades. They were young,
12 active-duty officers. I trained them first, and then I introduced them
13 to operative work.
14 In that sense, I requested from --
15 Q. I just wanted briefly, Mr. Karan, because we will come to discuss
16 the evidence of a witness who mentioned you, so I don't want to go into
17 great detail now.
18 Just for the record: You said that you replaced chiefs of
19 brigades or chiefs of their security organs?
20 A. Chiefs of their security organs.
21 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'm looking at the
22 clock. Maybe it is a bit too early, maybe a minute too early, but I am
23 about to move on to an entirely different topic, so maybe this would be a
24 good time for me to call it a day.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
1 Mr. Karan, we'll adjourn for the day. I'd like to instruct you
2 that you should not speak with anyone or communicate in any other way
3 with whomever about your testimony, whether it is about the testimony
4 you've given today or whether it is testimony to be given in the days to
5 come. We'd like to see you back tomorrow morning at 9.00 in this same
7 We adjourn until the -- Thursday, the 23rd of February, 9.00,
8 Courtroom II.
9 [The witness stands down]
10 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.45 p.m.,
11 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 23rd day of
12 February, 2012, at 9.00 a.m.