1 Friday, 2 April 2004
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Good morning.
7 Yes, Mr. Rodic.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Good morning to everyone.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Could I just remind you, Admiral, of the
11 affirmation you took at the commencement. It still applies.
12 WITNESS: MIODRAG JOKIC [Resumed]
13 [Witness answered through interpreter]
14 Cross-examined by Mr. Rodic: [Continued]
15 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Jokic. I'm going to continue
16 where I left off yesterday in asking you questions in your testimony.
17 Yesterday when I asked you about the units which were in the formation of
18 the 9th VPS at the Bay of Boka, you said that it was the 16th Border
19 Detachment, a mixed division of battleship landing ships, and the 69th
20 missile base, the PBO division of the 337th Naval Rear Base, the unit for
21 reconnoitering and information. And before your departure, that there was
22 the 472nd Motorised Brigade there as well, up until the 25th of September,
24 Now, my question to you is this: Apart from the ones you
25 enumerated within the composition of the 9th VPS, did you have any other
1 military units?
2 A. Yes. I had the staff units and the artillery units.
3 Q. Can you tell me please which artillery units you actually had?
4 A. The 107th Coastal Artillery Group, which included the stationary
5 coastal batteries along the coast; and two mobile battalions of 85
6 millimetres and 130 millimetres.
7 Q. Was that the 107th Coastal Artillery Group or was it the Divizion
8 or Artillery Battalion?
9 A. No. The coastal artillery group, that's what it was.
10 Q. And is the abbreviation the 107th OAD, as it was called?
11 A. No. No. It was the 107th OAG, coastal artillery group, because a
12 divizion or artillery battalion is not made up of the entrenched units
13 which are not mobile. They cannot be mixed with the mobile batteries.
14 Q. How many cannons are there -- were there in that unit or battery,
15 in the mobile ones?
16 A. 85 millimetre ones have six cannons and the 130 millimetre
17 batteries also have six cannons.
18 Q. And what about the 140th PK OAD, what's that?
19 A. The 140th Mobile Coastal Artillery Divizion or Artillery Battalion
20 was a unit that was there before the operations started, that is to say
21 during peacetime. And it incorporated and encompassed -- well, I can't
22 tell you exactly all the units it did encompass, but that was what it was.
23 Q. Now, in that particular unit, did they have 130-millimetre
24 cannons, a battery of cannons, of that calibre?
25 A. Yes. The unit was established -- was made up of the 141st Coastal
1 Group, which at one time was within the composition of the sector itself.
2 And then that divizion or artillery battalion formed the brigade -- a
3 brigade I think for a time.
4 Q. Within the composition of which brigade?
5 A. The Trebinje Brigade, the 472nd.
6 Q. How long was it in that composition?
7 A. Before the war. I don't know what period exactly.
8 Q. But in the period of October to December, it wasn't within the
9 composition of the Trebinje Brigade, was it, 1991 of course?
10 A. I don't know the exact title, the name, it went by, that
11 particular unit. But I do know the number of batteries, the number of
12 cannons, that were in my sector and that were in the sector of the
13 472nd Brigade, I know that quite exactly, and I think that that is the
14 substance, the essence of it all. Not whether it was the 140th PK OAD or
15 some other title or name. Now, if you want to know the strength of my
16 artillery and the brigade as well, I can tell you.
17 Q. I asked you yesterday and you left out, you omitted, the
18 artillery, that is why I am trying to help you complete this. What is the
19 TOS or TOS, TOC perhaps.
20 A. TOC?
21 Q. Yes.
22 A. The technical centre -- experimental centre which incorporated the
23 missile training ground for tests and training. It was located at
24 Prevlaka, and individual points were to be found in Konavle, the
25 elevations towards Dubrovnik to the south facing Budva.
1 Q. Now, what is this technical experimental centre, what did it have
2 within its composition of the various devices, weapons, and so on?
3 A. It had a mortar. I think it was 120-millimetre mortar, one of
4 those; and a Howitzer, 105 millimetres that one was; it had a
5 130-millimetre cannon as well, I believe. So it was a unit that was
6 subordinated to the General Staff, or rather, the military institute of
7 the JNA. And the commander was Colonel Telebat. Miroslav was his first
9 Q. Upon arrival at the naval military sector at the 7th of October,
10 to the end of December, 1991, did you have at your disposal any weapons
11 from this unit and were you in command of them?
12 A. Yes. I found that unit there when I arrived in Vitaljina, I
13 believe. That is to the north of Prevlaka, and I found those two or three
14 weapons there. And they were used by the barracks commander.
15 Q. Was it a Howitzer of 120-millimetre calibre, the P-30 type?
16 A. Yes, quite possibly it was. But generally speaking there were
17 three weapons, one was a mortar, one was a cannon, a Howitzer 122
18 millimetre that we called Gvozdika [phoen], or the 105-type Howitzer. I
19 don't know exactly. But I know there were three weapons there, three
20 pieces, and they were used for exercises and testing. They were very
21 high-precision weapons.
22 Q. Now, in that particular unit did you have the VBRs that are called
23 Oganj and Plamen, multiple rocket launchers?
24 A. No. The technical centre did not have any of those multiple
25 rocket launchers. And when it did its testing and experiments, they would
1 be brought in from the unit itself, the unit engaged in the experiments.
2 But I never saw those kinds of weapons at Prevlaka itself.
3 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] May I ask the usher's assistance,
5 Q. You have before you an order from the 2nd Operative Group. The
6 order is for the return of the 472nd Motorised Brigade to its original
7 unit that had been sent to the command of the VPS, and the 42nd Motorised
8 Brigade. Can you tell us the content of that order.
9 A. Yes. This is an order regulating the return of the 472nd Brigade
10 to within the sector's composition.
11 Q. From what date?
12 A. The 25th of October.
13 Q. And what about the time? Was the time specified?
14 A. The 25th of October at 11.00. I have never seen this order,
15 although it is an authentic order. And I'm not challenging it at all.
16 However, in the documents that I looked through belonging to the archives,
17 it says that the brigade was subordinated to the -- on the 27th of
18 October. And an order -- there's another order which states that on the
19 25th of October, I should report to the Trebinje command post with the
20 commander with a map.
21 Q. You saw that document, but this is another document actually from
22 that same archive, and it specifically defines the day and date when the
23 472nd Motorised Brigade goes back to the original formation in order to
24 engage in combat operations in the broader region around Dubrovnik.
25 A. Well, yes, I've already said I don't challenge this document at
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 all. It has all the facets of an order of this kind and also a signature.
2 All I'm saying is that the first order relating to the command of that
3 brigade, the one I had, specified the 27th of October. That's why this is
4 a little surprising.
5 Q. Can you explain to us in greater detail what this means, when the
6 command of the 2nd Operational Group says that the brigade goes back to
7 its original unit. What does that mean?
8 A. It says the original command, the command which was in command and
9 superior to the subordinated unit in question.
10 Q. Does that mean that that brigade was temporarily taken out from
11 its original composition -- or rather, the 9th VPS?
12 A. Yes, but that's not the whole truth. That particular brigade, at
13 my request to General Strugar saying that the brigade was for 25 days
14 within the Dubrovnik siege and used the artillery very extensively, he
15 said that this solution was only a temporary one, provisional one, and
16 that he would be issuing an order for its further full deployment. That's
17 the real truth of it.
18 Q. Would you please answer my questions rather than expanding your
19 answers, but we'll come to that in due course. We'll come to the date
20 under which it was actually under your command. But the substance of the
21 matter is this: That the brigade went back to its original formation, not
22 as you have been persistently stating, that the brigade or individual
23 parts of the brigade, the battalions, the 3rd and 4th Battalions, that
24 they were only attached to you temporarily. The essence of this is that
25 you were the original unit for that brigade. Isn't that right?
1 A. No.
2 Q. This brigade, was it within its original units, the 9th VPS, also
3 between 1983 and 1989?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. That brigade, was it within the composition of its original unit,
6 the 9th VPS, did it remain there until the 25th of September, 1991?
7 A. Yes, probably so. Yes.
8 Q. Until the 16th of October, the 4th Battalion of that brigade
9 remained within the composition of the 9th VPS while the rest of it was
10 temporarily detached, wasn't it?
11 A. Yes, for the first ten days. Yes.
12 Q. Thank you very much.
13 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would like this
14 document to be assigned an exhibit number.
15 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.
16 THE REGISTRAR: This document will be marked D43.
17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] May I have the usher's assistance,
18 please. I would like to show the witness P133. This is from the binder
19 that has already been used during the examination-in-chief. More
20 specifically, tab 41.
21 Q. This is a photocopy of the personal file of Vladimir Kovacevic.
22 May I ask you to go straight to page 4, where we have a record of his
23 active military service. That's the title just above the table that is
24 shown on page 4.
25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] In the English translation, it is also
1 page 4.
2 Q. Can you please have a look and tell me, line 5 of the document,
3 line 6, looking from above down. The 6th box. It says that:
4 "Vladimir Kovacevic is hereby transferred to the garrison of the VPS, the
5 Trebinje garrison."
6 Whereas up to that point, he had been in the reserve officer
7 school in Bileca.
8 A. Yes. I can see that.
9 Q. Was he then transferred on the 27th of July, 1989, to the military
10 naval district?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. The next box just underneath this one, it says that he's being
13 transferred outside the garrison for purposes of his service -- to serve
14 as company commander with the 472nd Brigade of the navy's infantry, marked
15 as B; naval infantry battalion, marked as A; the 9th VPS; Trebinje
16 garrison. This order is dated the 30th of August, 1989, isn't it?
17 A. Yes. There's something here that was crossed out. This is not
18 the 30th.
19 Q. The far right you have the 30th of August 1989, and then added in
20 handwriting that he took up duties on 2nd of August, 1990?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Is it correct that in the next box just underneath -- you have
23 looked at the previous box, haven't you?
24 A. Yes. But what I see in the next box is that he took up his duties
25 on the 12th of September. And just before it is stated that he took up
1 his duties on the 2nd of October, the same year. But here we're talking
2 about 1989, and there what I see is 1990.
3 Q. But which duty was it?
4 A. The commander of the 3rd Motorised Company.
5 Q. That's right. Whereas in the previous box he was assigned to the
7 A. Yes, as the commander of the 3rd Company. I think there's a
8 slight mistake there. I'm not sure I understand this.
9 Q. Very well.
10 A. It's not very well at all because this is simply inaccurate. In
11 the previous box it says that he assumed his duties as commander of the
12 3rd Company in the 1st Battalion, whereas in the next box it says acting
13 commander of the 3rd Company within the battalion. But this simply can't
14 be; this makes no sense at all.
15 Q. I'm not sure if it makes any sense or not, but this is part of his
16 personal file. Let's move on.
17 A. Yes, but you will agree that it makes no sense at all that he
18 would have been assigned as duty company commander, and then a year
19 later -- well, I don't know, there must be a mistake here.
20 Q. Very well.
21 Let's move on, please, the box just underneath, commander of the
22 3rd Motorised Brigade of the 472nd Motorised Battalion [as interpreted].
23 The unit is part of the 9th VPS of the military naval district, Trebinje
24 Garrison. To the right, at the far right, the date is the 10th of May,
25 1991. Is that correct?
1 A. No, that's not correct. None of it's correct, in fact.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Somers.
3 MS. SOMERS: The transcript, page 9, line 18, reads:
4 "3rd Motorised Brigade of the 472nd Motorised Battalion." It should be
5 reversed, battalion, brigade. 3rd Motorised Battalion of the 472nd
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] If you look at the table it is stated
9 there very accurately, the commander of the 3rd Motorised Company of the
10 Motorised Battalion A.
11 Q. In the next box of the 472nd Motorised Brigade marked as R, 9th
12 VPS military naval district VPO, Trebinje Garrison. The unit is marked in
13 this way as well as the location of the garrison. If you look at the next
14 box in this table, the second box from left to right, where it states
15 where he's serving, in which unit, in which institution, and in which
17 A. If you allow, if all these three boxes, Captain Kovacevic is
18 assuming his duties as company commander. This is quite simply
19 impossible. Between 1989 and 1991, he's three times assigned the same
20 duty as company commander. How can that be possible? If you look at this
21 box you just read out to me and the one before that --
22 Q. At first, he was acting commander and then he was company
24 A. Yes, but before that he was company commander, not acting company
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13 English transcripts.
1 Q. You said that was crossed out.
2 A. No, please, if you will allow, only the date was crossed out. I
3 cannot accept your position. I think we must subject this to expert
4 analysis. This is an obvious error.
5 Q. Let's try again. Underneath the text, this box where it says that
6 he is being transferred to your garrison for purposes of service, the
7 first box on the left it says: "Commander of the 3rd Company of the naval
8 infantry in the 1st Battalion of the naval company A."
9 That's the 1st Battalion?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. The box just underneath: "Acting commander of the 3rd Motorised
12 Brigade of the motorised battalion."
13 Doesn't it?
14 A. How come he's acting commander now whereas before he was
15 commander --
16 MS. SOMERS: Objection, Your Honour. I would just like to point
17 out on page 11 line 7 it should read 3rd Motorised Company of the
18 motorised battalion.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
20 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. How many battalions does a brigade have?
22 A. This is only about one battalion. It says under A in peacetime
23 only one battalion, three companies, and every company builds up to a
24 battalion, at least while I was commander.
25 Q. Are you saying that a brigade has three companies that makes up a
2 A. Yes, in peacetime. We're talking about peacetime, but each
3 company builds up to a battalion in wartime.
4 Q. Please tell me how many battalions are there that are part of the
5 472nd Motorised
6 A. In wartime, in war formation, four. In peacetime, there's only
7 one. That's how it was while I was commander there.
8 Q. Can an officer go from one battalion to another, pursuant to an
9 order, of course?
10 A. Yes, that's perfectly possible.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 Will you please look at the far right, the boxes that are at the
13 far right. In all three cases is it correct that where it says:
14 "Instruction or order regulating the state of affairs," each and every
15 time this is an order issued by the command of the military naval
16 district, isn't it?
17 A. Yes, probably -- no. This can't be the military naval district.
18 This is personnel administration. When he left Bileca, camp B. Then
19 underneath you have the command of the military naval district, yes.
20 That's right.
21 Q. Personnel administration SSNO is transferring him from the
22 infantry unit in Bileca to the Trebinje garrison to serve with the
23 military naval district, and his further status in the military naval
24 district is regulated by orders from the commander of the military naval
25 district. Isn't that correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Does this confirm the fact that the 472nd Brigade was with its
3 original formation of the 9th Military Naval Sector, or rather, 9th
4 Military Naval District?
5 A. Yes, as of the 5th of May -- as of the 10th of May. That's the
6 10th of May is the last date. The 10th of May, 1991.
7 Q. This is precisely the period of time under discussion, isn't it?
8 That's how it was?
9 A. Yes, the 10th of May, 1991.
10 Q. What does that mean, the 10th of May, 1991? What does that stand
12 A. That was the point he was appointed commander, company commander
13 with the motorised battalion formation A.
14 Q. That's how it remained until the commencement of the Dubrovnik
15 operation in October and until Commander Ekrem Devlic was wounded?
16 A. No, that's not how it was. I believe he was appointed, I'm not
17 sure when, as deputy commander of the battalion first.
18 Q. Fine.
19 A. But I can't see that anywhere. It's not stated specifically in
20 this order. It was probably this way, the way it reads here.
21 Q. On the 19th of February, 1992, did he switch from the military
22 naval district to the 13th Corps?
23 A. I don't know about that. This is the first time I see this
24 document, but if I look at it I see that this indeed is the case.
25 Q. So up to that point, he had been with the military naval district
1 with the 472nd Brigade, hadn't he?
2 A. Well, probably, but you can't really see it from this. Yes.
3 Q. Oh, this does in fact indicate that. It says: "Pursuant to an
4 order of the SSNO 2/35, dated the 19th of February, 1992, he is hereby
5 transferred to the 13th Corps."
6 Can you see that?
7 A. Oh, yes, but this is the first time I realise that he was ever
8 part of that corps. I'm not sure if he was, as a matter of fact, or
9 whether this is just a fictitious transfer.
10 Q. Are you trying to say that this document tendered into evidence by
11 the Office of the Prosecutor during the examination-in-chief is a
12 fabricated document?
13 A. No, that's not what I'm saying. I'm just saying that I don't know
14 it for a fact that he was part of that formation.
15 Q. Well, Mr. Jokic, maybe it is not given to you to know everything
16 there is to know.
17 A. Well, yeah, I would tend to agree with that.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] We'll no longer be requiring this
21 Q. So we have now determined the date as the 17th of October, or
22 rather, the 16th of October as the final date until which the
23 4th Battalion remained in the composition of the 9th VPS. Furthermore, we
24 determined --
25 MS. SOMERS: That's not the evidence. That date is not the
2 JUDGE PARKER: What do you say it should be?
3 MS. SOMERS: The -- could he ask the witness to correct it,
4 Your Honour? That's not what the witness said earlier.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
6 Mr. Rodic.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I understand this may be a bit
8 complex, but I've have three answers from the witness to the effect that
9 the 4th Battalion of the 472nd Motorised Brigade until as late as the 16th
10 of October remained part of the 9th VPS. I believe we can have the
11 witness confirm this yet again.
12 MS. SOMERS: [Previous translation continues]... For the witness
13 to answer this, not for counsel to testify consistently.
14 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] The witness has answered this question
15 three times already.
16 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic, if you want to put to the witness that
17 it is established by his evidence that there was a certain date, you have
18 a problem, because his evidence does not at the moment identify such a
19 date. There is more than one possible date. So if you want to start with
20 the proposition that there is a clear date, you'll have to pursue that
21 question with the witness further. Alternatively, leave out a reference
22 to the date and proceed with your question.
23 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] May I just have a minute, Your Honour.
24 [Defence counsel confer]
25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I am going to proceed, and my
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13 English transcripts.
1 colleague is going to find this. Because I'm sure that I did get an
2 answer to that question today.
3 Q. Let us repeat this once again. The Trebinje Brigade, the
4 472nd Motorised Brigade, from the 25th of October until the 20th of
5 November, 1991, was it within the 9th VPS Military Naval Sector?
6 A. Yes, according to this document.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, on page 7, in line 4, you
8 can check this for yourselves, I asked today whether the 4th Battalion of
9 the 472nd Motorised Brigade until the 16th of October was within the 9th
10 VPS, Military Naval Sector. So my learned friend can check this in the
11 transcript as well. And I would kindly ask her to follow the proceedings
12 more carefully.
13 MS. SOMERS: Your -- could we go to the response then, please, for
14 page 7. Excuse me, can I just check that on the other computer because I
15 can't see it on this one.
16 [Prosecution counsel confer]
17 MS. SOMERS: Thank you. The question on that page -- the response
19 "A. Until -- yes, for the first ten days.
20 Q. Until the 16th of October, the 4th Battalion of that
21 brigade remained in the composition of the 9th VPS while the rest of it
22 was temporarily detached, wasn't it?
23 A. Yes, for the first ten days -- first days of
25 JUDGE PARKER: Or the first ten days from the 16th.
1 MS. SOMERS: Can we ask to have the witness clarify it,
2 Your Honour.
3 JUDGE PARKER: I think the position, Mr. Rodic, clearly is that
4 there is some uncertainty where you felt there was certainty. If you want
5 to be sure about certainty, I think you need to put the matter again to
6 the witness.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation].
8 Q. I do apologise, Mr. Jokic, but let me ask you yet again. Is it
9 correct that the 4th Battalion of the 472nd Motorised Brigade until the
10 16th of October was within the 9th VPS, Military Naval Sector?
11 A. Your Honour, last time, yesterday, I also said that when I came
12 and when I took up my duties, this 4th Battalion had been taken out of
13 combat and it was on leave in Igalo. And then orders followed, I think on
14 the 10th, that the battalion should be reassigned to the brigade. I don't
15 know exactly which date this was. It was not in combat, so they were
16 taken from leave. It was some date around the 10th or after the 10th.
17 Q. My question was whether it was within the 9th VPS, whether it was
18 subordinated to you until the 16th of October, 1991, not whether it was in
19 combat or whether it was on leave. Could you tell me yes or no --
20 JUDGE PARKER: The answer was that it was on a date of which the
21 witness is not certain, around the 10th or after the 10th.
22 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. We'll proceed
24 Q. Is it correct that after the 472nd Motorised Brigade on the 20th
25 of November left the 9th VPS, that it was still within the 9th VPS -- or
1 rather, that the 3rd Battalion of that brigade was still within the
2 9th VPS all the way up to the end of December 1991?
3 A. Yes. That battalion was temporarily subordinated to the 9th VPS;
4 whereas, the original brigade that you were talking about, the 472nd, it
5 never returned within the ranks of the 9th VPS. It was never reassigned
6 to the 9th VPS.
7 Q. I would like to ask you to answer my questions briefly. Do not
8 expound to that extent, please.
9 Did the 3rd Battalion remain under you temporarily or did it
10 remain within its original brigade and was the rest of the brigade
11 temporarily assigned to another task, to another unit?
12 A. The battalion was subordinated to the 9th Sector temporarily,
13 while the brigade went to carry out its tasks - and it says so in the
14 order - the 472nd Brigade left one of its battalions temporarily within
15 the 9th Sector.
16 Q. We looked at a document, D43, earlier on, and that was the command
17 of the 2nd Operational Group, that the 472nd Motorised Brigade should
18 return to its original ranks, its original establishment. Was that the
20 A. Yes, but now we're talking about the 21st of November, when the
21 brigade left the sector.
22 Q. For this battalion, is the brigade its original unit?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. For the brigade, is the 9th Military Naval Sector its original
25 unit or establishment?
1 A. Yes. But the battalion -- or rather, the sector is not the
2 original unit of the battalion. There is a major difference involved
4 Q. That is your answer. Thank you.
5 Can you tell me whether the 2nd Operational Group is a temporary
6 organisation which never existed before with that kind of establishment?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Is it correct that the 2nd Operational Group as a temporary
9 establishment never had an area of responsibility within which the
10 commander was compelled to carry out operations?
11 A. That's not right. The 2nd Operational Group, when it was
12 established and when it was given its orders -- or rather, its directives,
13 it also got its area of responsibility. And this area of responsibility
14 included the border between Croatia and Montenegro all the way to the
15 Neretva River. That was its area of responsibility. It was a wartime
16 unit and a war zone. It is not a peacetime unit, or rather, command.
17 Q. Was this zone then all the way up to Mostar? Did it include
18 Mostar in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
19 A. Yes, it did. I think it did.
20 Q. How many garrisons and which garrisons then were under the
21 2nd Operational Group?
22 A. Under the 2nd Operational Group were all the garrisons that the
23 9th sector had as the subordinate command. Then the garrisons that the
24 brigade had, the 472nd Brigade, and those garrisons of the 37th and
25 2nd Corps that were subordinated to it.
1 Q. Where's the 37th Corps from?
2 A. It was temporarily detached to that zone of operations and
3 subordinated to the 2nd Operational Group, and it came from Uzice.
4 Q. Where is Uzice?
5 A. In Serbia.
6 Q. In which military district? Which military district did the
7 37th Corps from Uzice belong to?
8 A. I don't know exactly which military district. I think it belonged
9 to the 3rd Military District. I'm not sure. It was not within my sphere
10 of interest. I do not have this knowledge, but I think it was the
11 3rd District. But --
12 Q. According to that analogy, are you claiming that the command of
13 the 2nd Operational Group had within it the Uzice garrison as well?
14 A. No. What I claim is that it includes all the garrisons in the
15 zone of operations. We do not understand each other at all. I have
16 already explained what a zone of operations is in wartime. This is the
17 area between the border of Montenegro and Croatia, Debeli Brijeg,
18 Prevlaka, including Mostar, the Neretva valley, and the units that were
19 subordinated to the 2nd Operational Group that was perhaps the
20 Nevesinje-Gacko line. I think that would be right answer.
21 Q. Zone of operations and area of responsibility, are they one in the
22 same thing in military terminology?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Is it correct that most of the soldiers from the 2nd Operational
25 Group belonged to the reservists and volunteers, because the JNA was
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13 English transcripts.
1 primarily manned from the reserve force?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Is it correct that these soldiers, reservists, were called up for
4 mobilisation for a military exercise? They were not called up to go to
5 war because a state of war had not been declared?
6 A. Yes, that's what the situation was.
7 Q. Is it precisely for that reason that later on a decision was made
8 to the effect that units would be used for 45 days, and then they would go
9 on leave, or rather, the soldiers comprising those units?
10 A. Yes, yes, there was such a decision.
11 Q. Was it an additional problem that there weren't enough -- there
12 wasn't enough trained personnel?
13 A. Yes, that's a broader problem. It's not a question of a shortage.
14 It is a question of speedy mobilisation and manning with inadequate
15 personnel and a lack of training before bringing them into combat.
16 Q. So what is correct is that the reservists were not sufficiently
17 trained, or that as a matter of fact they were untrained for the situation
18 that they found themselves in in the 2nd Operational Group?
19 A. Yes, it can be put that way.
20 Q. Does all of that together constitute an objective set of
21 circumstances which considerably aggravate efficient command, irrespective
22 of the rank of commander?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Is it correct that in the doctrine of command of the JNA, tasks
25 are first issued to subordinate units -- or rather, their commanders, and
1 in this way each commander down the entire chain of command issues orders
2 to commanders and officers subordinated to him?
3 A. Yes, but this commander who issues orders first to units directly
4 subordinated to him first receives this task from his superior officer,
5 then elaborates on that and sends it down the chain. That is the chain of
7 Q. According to the doctrine of command, did the JNA prefer a
8 centralised command system, which implied the absence of initiative?
9 A. Yes. That principle in the JNA was - how shall I put it? - very
10 much emphasised, although initiative as such was okayed in reasonable
11 limits, if it contributes to the overall task and assignment of the
12 higher-up unit, if its success will contribute to the success -- the
13 overall success of the unit above it.
14 Q. Tell me, please, is it correct that in October 1991 on one
15 occasion you said that "Dubrovnik is a Croatian town, and after this
16 operation of ours it will continue to be a Croatian town, but that nobody
17 dared publicise that?"
18 MS. SOMERS: Objection, Your Honour. Ask when and what context.
19 Focus on where the alleged quote may have come from. It's unfair to the
21 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, it is an extremely wide-ranging question,
22 Mr. Rodic. I think it reasonable that you should be more specific.
23 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. And I should
24 like to remind my learned colleague that this is to be found in several
25 interviews which Mr. Jokic gave to the Prosecution and I assume --
1 JUDGE PARKER: [Previous translation continues]... for Ms. Somers,
2 it is a matter for the fairness of the question you put to the witness.
3 So if you want to identify some past statement of his, have him confirm
4 that he made it, identify it with sufficient certainty to give the witness
5 a chance of remembering it and identifying it.
6 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. The most recent place you stated this, linked to the media, the
8 public information media, is the interview in the magazine Nin dated the
9 16th of November, 1991. I misspoke. 2001. I apologize. Is that true?
10 Is that the latest instance?
11 A. Yes --
12 MS. SOMERS: If you put the interview to the individual, and I
13 would like to point out that Mr. Rodic said October, 1991. Perhaps the
14 interview is available and the witness can take a look at what he
15 allegedly said.
16 JUDGE PARKER: Have you got it to hand, Mr. Rodic?
17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, I do, Your Honour, but I'm going
18 to go into that matter in due course a little later.
19 Q. In an interview to the magazine Nin, let's be quite precise here.
20 I think it was the 16th of November, 2001. Yes, the 16th of November,
21 2001. It was my mistake if I said October 2001. Did you give an
22 interview to the magazine Nin?
23 A. I don't think I could have given an interview because on the 16th
24 of November I was in The Hague.
25 Q. Yes. But in this weekly magazine Nin and it's issue of the 16th
1 of November, 2001, did an interview of yours come out, was it published?
2 A. Once again, I don't know, because on the 12th of November I gave
3 myself up voluntarily to The Hague. And three and a half months later, I
4 returned to the country. And if you give me a copy to see -- to have a
5 look, I'll will be happy to answer your question.
6 Q. But you say you don't know about that, you don't know whether the
7 interview was published --
8 MS. SOMERS: Objection. This is twisting the witness's words.
9 It's confusing the witness. If --
10 JUDGE PARKER: I don't think it's confusing the witness, but it
11 may not be accurately putting the witness's words to him.
12 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honour. If perhaps we could look at
13 the alleged interview.
14 JUDGE PARKER: We're wasting a lot of time at the moment,
15 Mr. Rodic, on what really is a minor aside. The witness doesn't presently
16 remember the interview, if I understand his evidence. If you want him to
17 remember it right now, I would suggest he should be shown the publication
18 to ask whether that is a publication resulting from an interview he gave.
19 If not, and you want to come back to that later, just move on and come
20 back to it later.
21 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I will of course show the
22 interview to the witness in due course, but I have reason for which I
23 wanted to clarify this point, whether he knows that the interview was
24 indeed published on the 16th of November, 2001. And I think my question
25 is well-founded. All I'm interested in is to hear from him whether he
1 knows that the interview was published in the issue of the 16th of
2 November, 2001.
3 JUDGE PARKER: And the present effective of his evidence is that
4 without being reminded of the article, he doesn't remember giving such an
5 interview because he was in The Hague at that time of publication.
6 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
7 Q. Did you give an interview at all to the weekly magazine Nin in
8 October 2001?
9 A. I think I did, but I'm not quite sure. I gave two interviews to
10 the Vecernje Novosti paper, I think to Vreme as well. I'm not sure about
11 the Nin magazine, possibly. Possibly, I did. But I would have to check
12 that out and see it.
13 Q. Just one more question in that regard, please. The interview from
14 the Nin magazine, was it ever shown to you by the Prosecution and did you
15 state your views about it?
16 A. Yes, yes. I have remembered. Yes.
17 Q. Could you tell us when.
18 A. In an interview. I don't know when.
19 Q. Very well. Let's move on and we'll come back to that interview.
20 Did you ever advocate the formation of a Dubrovnik republic -- or
21 rather, did you come out in favour of stating that Dubrovnik should be
22 outside the borders of the Republic of Croatia? Just briefly, please,
23 because I am afraid we're losing a lot of time. Yes or no?
24 A. No, never.
25 Q. Thank you.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Now, do you know Nikola Samardzic, who at the time in 1991 was the
2 minister of foreign affairs of Montenegro?
3 A. Yes, I met him while he was the director of the Kotorska Providba
4 company, the maritime company.
5 Q. In this period when you met him and he was the director of
6 Jugo-okeanija, was that the period you were the commander of the 9th VPS,
7 from 1983 to 1989?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Did you know him well during that period, before the war, while
10 you were commander in the Bay of Kotor? Did you visit one another? Would
11 you see each other?
12 A. Not really. He attended naval ceremonies in Kumbor several times.
13 I don't really know whether I was there myself -- or rather, whether I was
14 in that general area.
15 Q. Now, tell me, during the Dubrovnik operation, did you happen to
16 see him?
17 A. I don't think so. As far as I remember, no. There was no reason
18 or need.
19 Q. Tell me, please, did you have contacts with him over the phone
20 during that period of time perhaps?
21 A. I really can't remember having had a telephone conversation with
23 Q. Now, the next period, October/December 1991, while you were
24 commander of the 9th VPS, did he ever ring you up, Nikola Samardzic, over
25 the phone? And if he did phone you, did you ask him whether a Dubrovnik
1 republic was something that was feasible?
2 A. No. It never entered my mind; it never occurred to me to ask him
4 Q. Are you at odds at all with Nikola Samardzic? Have you had an
6 A. No, absolutely not.
7 Q. And was there ever a situation in which Nikola Samardzic would
8 call you up on the phone and that General Strugar -- when General Strugar
9 was sitting next to you?
10 A. No. I think that situation is highly unlikely and almost
11 impossible. How could he ring me up on the phone with a general sitting
12 next to me who was my superior? How could that have ever happened?
13 Q. Let me move on. In Dubrovnik -- or rather, Tivat and then
14 Dubrovnik on the 29th of October, did a group of ambassadors come to
16 A. Yes, they did.
17 Q. Now let me ask you this: With respect to this visit by the
18 ambassadors to Dubrovnik, ambassadors who arrived in Tivat first in
19 October 1991, were you contacted by the minister, Nikola Samardzic, and he
20 was the minister of foreign affairs of the Republic of Montenegro,
21 Nikola Samardzic was his name, or the General Staff?
22 A. Nobody contacted me, either the General Staff or Nikola Samardzic.
23 And what's Samardzic got to do with that visit?
24 Q. Well, a Nikola Samardzic testified to that effect before this
25 Honourable Trial Chamber.
1 MS. SOMERS: Objection. Putting the testimony of another witness
2 in this regard is not appropriate.
3 JUDGE PARKER: That is a justified observation, Mr. Rodic.
4 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour, and we'll
5 move on.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Do you know which the assignments of the 2nd Operational Group
9 were and the goals of the operation itself during that period of time, the
10 material time, that is to say, October to December 1991 or a little later?
11 A. Yes. I can tell you the assignments with respect to my knowledge
12 of the operation and after preparing my defence, because when I got to the
13 battlefield, I didn't learn about them.
14 Q. Well, tell us please what they were.
15 A. The 2nd Operational Group had as its task and assignment, pursuant
16 to a directive from the General Staff, to deblock the Prevlaka barracks,
17 to take control of Kupari, to block the town of Dubrovnik from land and
18 sea, and to reach the Neretva region, and to act jointly with the forces
19 that from the Mostar region were operational towards Ploce. In the
20 primary assignment -- or rather, the objective, the prime objective, was
21 to act together with the forces along the Mostar/Split axis. However,
22 this idea was given up fairly earlier on, because there was not sufficient
23 manpower to do that.
24 Q. Thank you. According to that directive from the
25 General Staff - and I'll try and remind you of the assignments and
1 objectives of the 2nd Operational Group - was one of the tasks and
2 assignments, pursuant to the directive, that the main forces along the
3 Ljubinja/Zavala/Slano axis and then the village of Ljubovo, Ivanjica,
4 Cibaci, and Grab, Dubravka, Molunat, with auxiliary forces and
5 reinforcements to secure the facilities around the Mostar airport and the
6 Neretva River valley with the aim of breaking the forces along the axis of
7 attack and to emerge to the Adriatic coast to cut off the Adriatic highway
8 at several sections in the Slano/Prevlaka section and to block by land
9 Dubrovnik from the land and from the sea as well as the airport of Cilipi
10 and to make it impossible for the enemy to perform its manoeuvres. And
11 then by securing the Ploce axis, to destroy and disarm the enemy forces in
12 the surrounding areas.
13 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, if this is being read from a particular
14 document, can it be identified so that it does not become the testimony of
15 Mr. Rodic. If there is some source to check it off again, otherwise it is
16 a lecture by Mr. Rodic.
17 JUDGE PARKER: Is it the case, Mr. Rodic, that you're putting a
18 quotation to the witness from a document?
19 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I am basing this question
20 on a document as well as other documents and all the information that the
21 Defence team has gathered.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I may be allowed to say
23 something, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This has been quoted from a
1 directive on the attack that was part of the Dubrovnik operation, the
2 commencement of the operation on the 1st of October.
3 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. So the objectives that I set out here are these --
5 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic, you're still dealing with my concern.
6 If you're quoting from a document such as that, the way to do it is to put
7 the document to the witness if you want him to confirm what you are
8 saying. It needs to be a document that can be identified by the Chamber,
9 if it needs to, at a later date. It needs to be a document that can be
10 verified by the Prosecution. It needs to be something which the witness
11 can consider and decide whether it is what you are saying or not.
12 Especially when you're purporting to quote such an extensive quotation
13 from a document. It happens in this particular case. The document seems
14 to be one very familiar to the witness, and he was able to give an answer.
15 That would be unusual, and it will -- while it may have been something he
16 could deal with, it still leaves the Chamber and the Prosecution without a
17 means of identification and verification. So if you could identify the
18 document now for the record and remember that in future, we'd be grateful.
19 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do have the document in
20 my possession, but there's no English translation of that document. So if
21 that doesn't pose a problem, I'm quite willing to offer this document as
22 an exhibit.
23 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, may we ask that we have the document
24 before in whatever language it's available so that we can follow with some
25 degree of understanding. Until we've had a chance, and perhaps the
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Chamber has the same opportunity, we can avoid more questions on this.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Fortunately, Mr. Rodic, there will be a break quite
3 soon so you can make copies if you haven't copies ready.
4 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I don't have any copies available now,
5 but I can make some during the break, Your Honour. That's no problem at
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
9 Q. Mr. Jokic, can you please tell me, if you know, who took the
10 decision to start the operation in the direction of Dubrovnik -- on
11 Dubrovnik and further on. Who took the decision for the 2nd Operational
12 Group to move towards Dubrovnik and further on to the Neretva River and
14 A. Their command. The General Staff, as the supreme staff of the
16 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we have an
17 interpretation problem here. The witness said: "The supreme command."
18 Whereas, on the transcript we see "their command," which are two very
19 different things, as we all know.
20 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Petrovic.
21 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Mr. Jokic, when you came to the 9th VPS, Military Naval Sector,
23 were you familiarised with the previous operations carried out by the
24 National Guards Corps near the Prevlaka area or in Konavli, operations
25 carried out against military convoys that were en route from Boka to
2 A. Yes, I was familiarised.
3 Q. Can you please tell us who told you about this.
4 A. Well, the first to talk about it was the chief of staff, Zec, but
5 other officers spoke about it, too.
6 Q. Were there any soldiers who were wounded during those attacks?
7 A. I can't remember whether there was anyone who was wounded at
8 Prevlaka, but I don't think there were many casualties in terms of people
9 being killed or wounded. I think the main thing was those acts of
10 provocation against the barracks at Prevlaka, the military vehicles and
11 convoys en route from Boka to Trebinje being checked, as well as the
12 taking of the military holiday resort of Kupari.
13 Q. Can you please specify the period of time in which this was
14 happening. Did they give you a specific period of time for these things?
15 A. That was before the 1st of October, 1991, August and September.
16 Q. Thank you very much.
17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this may be a convenient
18 time for us to break.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Rodic.
20 --- Recess taken at 10.28 a.m.
21 --- On resuming at 10.55 a.m.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic.
23 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Did we secure copies of that document?
25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. We have secured
1 copies, and I will now have them distributed, if we can have the usher's
2 assistance, please.
3 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
4 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Mr. Jokic, we don't have the English translation of this document,
6 not for the time being anyway. Before the break, I asked a number of
7 questions in relation to the objectives and tasks of the 2nd Operational
8 Group. Therefore, I would now like to ask you for the benefit of the
9 Trial Chamber and the OTP. Since this document is in Serbian language,
10 can we now please go through it. I will ask you questions, and if then
11 you can please tell us what the document is about and confirm what I'm
12 saying. This document in the upper left corner, you can see that it was
13 issued by the command of the 2nd Operational Group on the 29th of
14 September, 1991, at 1.00 p.m. at Kifino Selo. That is the location.
15 That's probably where the command post of operational group was initially,
16 wasn't it?
17 A. Yes, that's correct.
18 Q. Just underneath, is this what it says: "Proposal for a decision
19 on an offensive operation delivered to the command of the 2nd OG to the
20 Chief of the General Staff of the armed forces of the SFRY,
21 Lieutenant General Blagoje Adzic."
22 A. Yes, indeed.
23 Q. Is the title of this document as follows: "Directive for attack
24 OP. Number 2"?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. For the benefit of the Trial Chamber and the OTP, I would please
2 like to ask you to read out item 1 and to say whether these are the
3 objectives that you spoke about before the break.
4 A. Item 1, I have decided as follows: From the present areas, to use
5 the greater part of the forces and to start the attack along the main axis
6 as follows: Ljubinja, Zavala, Slano, Ljubovo village, Ivanica, Cibaci and
7 Grab, Dubravka, Molunat.
8 MS. SOMERS: Excuse me, Your Honours. Do the interpreters have
9 copies of this order?
10 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters don't really have copies but
11 the B/C/S copy's on the ELMO, so we can see the document. Thank you.
12 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much for that.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "The auxiliary forces shall be used
14 to secure facilities and the Mostar airport" - I don't think I - "and in
15 the Neretva River valley with the following objective:" Yes, now I can
16 hear you. Now it's all right. "With the following objective: With the
17 support of the air force, artillery, and navy" -- I'm not receiving any
18 interpretation now.
19 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Mr. Jokic, while you are speaking in Serbian, you are not
21 receiving any interpretation.
22 A. But I'm not sure when the text is finished. That's why I'm
24 Q. Please just read on, but make sure to do it slowly.
25 A. Very well. Thank you. "By simultaneous and energetic action,
1 crush the forces along the axis of the attack and reach the coast, cutting
2 off the Adriatic highway, coastal road, at several places in the
3 Slano/Prevlaka section. Block Dubrovnik from land and sea as well as the
4 Cilipi airport and Prevlaka. Make it impossible for enemy forces to
5 perform their manoeuvres. Then, by securing our own forces from the Ploce
6 axis, start the destruction and disarming of the enemy forces that have
7 been surrounded and be at the ready for further offensive operations into
8 Western Herzegovina."
9 Q. Can you please tell me the following: These objectives and tasks
10 as given here for the entire operation in which the 2nd Operational Group
11 was involved?
12 A. Yes, they are.
13 Q. Can you then tell me, based on this document, is it true that this
14 operation was to be carried out in two separate stages and how was this
15 set out?
16 A. Yes, that's true. The first and second stage are set out in this
18 Q. Can you please tell us these specific tasks, as related to each of
19 these two respective stages?
20 A. The first stage is reach the sea coast and cut off the Adriatic
21 highway, coastal road, the blocking of Dubrovnik.
22 Q. Can you just please move on a bit faster.
23 A. The airport and the forces at Prevlaka, duration, two days.
24 Second stage, completely crush, force to surrender and disarm enemy
25 forces, and be at the ready for transferring offensive operations into
1 West Herzegovina.
2 Q. Thank you very much.
3 A. Duration of the operation, two to three days.
4 Q. On the next page, does it say anything about the operational
5 disposition of the 2nd Operational Group, what it's supposed to be?
6 A. Yes. The operational disposition as follows: Forces for the
7 attack and blockade, forces for securing and defending facilities and the
8 airport, forces for support and reserve. The attack to commence pursuant
9 to a special order.
10 Q. Thank you very much.
11 Can you now please tell me about this initial stage of the
12 operation along the Dubrovnik/Herzegovina axis. Which forces were at that
13 point within the 2nd Operational Group and what were their respective
15 A. The forces of the 2nd Operational Group were as follows: The
16 37th Corps; the 472nd Brigade without the 4th Battalion and combat group
17 1; the 1st Brigade of the Territorial Defence from the 3rd Partisan
18 Division; the 9th VPS with the 4th Battalion from the 472nd Brigade; and
19 the Territorial Defence brigade from Titograd from the 21st Battalion.
20 Q. All these units that you have enumerated, do they all have special
21 tasks assigned to them pursuant to this directive at the beginning of the
22 operation, meaning tasks that were planned for them to carry out?
23 A. Yes, they did. Every unit had its own task.
24 Q. Can you tell me what the task of the 37th Corps was.
25 A. Do you want me to read it?
1 Q. Here where the tasks are spelled out. Perhaps you don't have to
2 read it. Perhaps you can read it to yourself and then tell us what the
3 main elements of the task involved are.
4 A. Well, the task of the 37th Corps is to use part of the forces
5 along the Lubinje/Ravno/Slano axis to carry out an attack and to use
6 another part of the forces to defend and take the airport of Mostar and
7 other facilities in the Mostar area and in the Neretva River valley.
8 Q. In that task, were they supposed to provide for the unhindered use
9 of the airport, reach the coast, cut off the road, and reach the Bay of
10 Slano, isolate Dubrovnik, and stop manoeuvres, and the intervention of the
11 other side from the area of Ploce. Was that part of the task, too?
12 A. Yes, it was.
13 Q. Inter alia, was part of the task to raid part of the forces of a
14 mountain battalion in the area of Capljina?
15 A. Yes, that's what the document says.
16 Q. Was it the task of the 472nd Motorised Brigade under B to cut the
17 road in the areas of Zaton and Cibaci, to block Dubrovnik and to cut off
18 the airport of Cilipi. And then by securing the flanks, prevent any
19 intervention towards Dubrovnik and start disarming and destroying enemy
20 forces? Is that right?
21 A. Yes, that's what the document says.
22 Q. What about the 1st Brigade of the Territorial Defence from the
23 3rd Partisan Division? Have the task to get to the road and cut it off in
24 the regions of Poljice and Mikulici, to block the airport of Cilipi from
25 the eastern side, and establish direct contact with the 4th Battalion of
1 the 472nd Motorised Brigade, and then start destroying enemy forces in the
2 area of Gruda acting in concert with parts of the 9th Military Naval
3 Sector in taking facility of Sutorina and Prevlaka. Is that right?
4 A. Yes, that's right. Although it is very inaccurate to say taking
5 the facility of Sutorina and Prevlaka that were in our hands. Actually,
6 these are parts of the territory where our forces were. So this is a
7 flagrant mistake.
8 Q. All right. Under D, the 9th Military Naval Sector with the
9 4th Battalion of the 472nd Motorised Brigade, was it supposed to destroy
10 enemy forces and control Prevlaka and with naval forces to exercise
11 control over exits -- entrances to the Bay of Boka Kotorska, to prevent
12 manoeuvres, and enemy operations, and support by naval artillery the land
13 forces, to be on the ready and carry out a landing from the sea when
15 A. Yes, that's what it says here.
16 Q. As for paragraph E of this directive, the brigade of Tijo Titograd
17 did it establish a reserve in the area of 2nd Operational Group in the
18 area of Trebinje, and was it supposed to be on the ready to be brought
19 into the attack along the Trebinje/Dubrovnik and Trebinje/Cilipi axis?
20 A. Yes, precisely, that's what it's written here.
21 Q. On the last page of the document, paragraph 5. Does it regulate
22 things as follows: That the command post of the 2nd Operational Group in
23 the area of Kifino Selo and that the AKM, the forward command post of the
24 operational group is in the area of Trebinje. Is that right?
25 A. Yes, that's right.
1 Q. Under paragraph C, at the end of this directive, does it contain
2 the following order: That the blockade of the port of Dubrovnik should
3 take place when the attack begins, and in this way prevent access for all
4 ships to the coast. And make it impossible to carry out -- make it
5 impossible for all civilian and foreign ships to carry out an attack?
6 A. Yes, that's right.
7 Q. Was this document compiled and signed by the commander of the
8 2nd Operational Group Lieutenant Colonel General Jevrem Cokic?
9 A. Yes, that's right.
10 Q. Were you aware of the objectives and tasks of the 2nd Operational
11 Group, and within it the tasks of the 9th Military Naval Sector?
12 A. No. When I came to the theatre of war, I had not seen this
13 directive or read it. Only the chief of staff told me that there was a
14 directive, and that is a document in an envelope with a large number of
15 other accompanying documents and maps. And he said something along the
16 following lines: That it was not acted upon, rather, it was combat orders
17 that were acted upon. I found this directive in the archives, and I read
18 it. But in addition to this directive, there is yet another directive
19 containing nine pages. The date, I think, was the 30th of September,
20 1991. It contains several details, but the two are similar in terms of
21 their objectives, tasks, and the commands that are there to carry out the
23 Q. That is precisely what I would like to ask you so that we clarify
24 it. Since we see that this document is entitled "Proposed decision for an
25 attack operation," and it is being submitted to the chief of General Staff
1 of the armed forces of the SFRY, Colonel General Blagoje Adzic, does that
2 mean that the General Staff reviews this directive, perhaps amends it in
3 some ways, and then approves it only after that. Is that the procedure?
4 A. Yes, that's the procedure.
5 Q. Does that mean then that the General Staff is the one that
6 exercises control over the attainment of these objectives and
7 implementation of these tasks involved in the operation for which it
8 established a temporary military formation which is called the
9 2nd Operational Group?
10 A. Yes. Yes.
11 Q. The General Staff of the armed forces of the SFRY in the period
12 that we are talking about, from October to December 1991 but later on as
13 well, did it regulate certain situations through separate orders of their
14 own in which it issued separate tasks to the 2nd Operational Group, those
15 that they were supposed to implement?
16 A. That's the way it's supposed to be. I don't know what kind of
17 documents the General Staff issued to the command of the 2nd Operational
18 Group. Whether this was a new directive, whether these were orders, I
19 don't know that. Because I never received this, of course. It was not
20 for me to receive. And I didn't find any in the archives, this particular
21 documentation of the General Staff. I didn't find it in the archives
23 Q. If you have not seen this, bearing in mind what we discussed
24 previously, that the General Staff exercises control over the
25 2nd Operational Group and the entire operation, was the General Staff then
1 supposed to follow the objectives and tasks during the operation and to
2 regulate it, as you had put it, through orders or other documents? In
3 principle, is that the way the General Staff was supposed to operate?
4 A. Yes, that is how it was supposed to operate.
5 Q. The tasks that the General Staff assigned to the 2nd Operational
6 Group down the chain of command, were they taken further down the chain of
7 command to subordinate commands, or rather, subordinate commanders from
8 the 2nd Operational Group?
9 A. I did not quite understand what you said -- or rather, that's not
10 the procedure involved. The General Staff issues its document, its order,
11 down to the command of the 2nd Operational Group. In that command, this
12 document, this order, is elaborated, the situation is assessed, and a
13 decision is made regarding further action. This document is then
14 submitted as an order to the command of the 2nd -- of the command of the
15 2nd Operational Group further down to their subordinate commands.
16 Q. In this specific case, they were?
17 A. They were the commands that we read out a few minutes ago.
18 Q. Tell me one more thing in relation to this, as for a decision for
19 further action, which is elaborated and adopted by the command of the
20 2nd Operational Group, is this adopted in accordance with orders received
21 from the General Staff -- in accordance with orders and tasks received
22 from the General Staff?
23 A. Yes, of course.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have finished dealing
1 with this document. I have finished examination in relation to this
2 document, and I would like to tender it into evidence as a Defence
3 exhibit. We will make an effort to provide an English translation as
4 well, so we will submit that subsequently. But for the most part, we have
5 dealt with the document through the witness and we've had it read out
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Rodic. The document will be
8 received if we could ask that the translation be provided before the
9 Easter break.
10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] We'll do our best, Your Honour.
11 THE REGISTRAR: This document is marked D44.
12 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Mr. Jokic, before the break I asked you about when you came to the
14 9th Military Naval District to take over your duties. I asked you whether
15 you were informed about the situation in the area of responsibility of the
16 9th Military Naval Sector and whether there were any persons, any
17 soldiers, who were wounded in attacks by the MUP forces and the National
18 Guards' Corps of the Republic of Croatia.
19 A. Yes, and I have answered that I was aware of this and, if
20 necessary, I can discuss it in greater detail. I do not remember any
21 losses. Perhaps there were one or two persons who were wounded, but I
22 don't remember more than that. This was at Prevlaka.
23 Q. During the operations that were carried out by your units and by
24 other units under the command of the 2nd Operational Group, were there any
25 soldiers of the other side that were taken prisoner?
1 A. Yes, there were. But for the most part these were people out of
2 uniform and without weapons, as far as, except for one case near Molunat,
3 where a few men were taken prisoner, as well as a 85-millimetre gun.
4 Q. Do you perhaps remember the case that happened at Molunat, when
5 that was, what period, timewise?
6 A. That was before I arrived, between the 1st and 5th or 6th of
7 October. But I do know about it.
8 Q. The people who were taken prisoner, if they had any health
9 problems, for instance, if they had been wounded or injured in any way
10 were they provided medical assistance at all, health assistant care?
11 A. Yes, of course. All the injured and wounded were evacuated to the
12 Meljine hospital and treated there, just like all our other wounded men.
13 Q. Does that mean that no distinction was made between the two, that
14 is to say wounded and injured members of the 2nd Operational Group and the
15 members of the other side who were taken prisoner?
16 A. We did not make any difference or differentiate between them now
17 with respect to treatment.
18 Q. Did you ever happen to visit any of the wounded in the military
19 hospital at Meljine?
20 A. Yes, I remember two occasions. Once when a member of the Croatian
21 defence was taken prisoner at Bosanka. His name was Damir Kos.
22 Q. Can you tell me, please, this man, Damir Kos, did he tell you
23 where he was from?
24 A. Yes. He said he was from Koprivnica and that he had reported for
25 duty as a volunteer at Mesic's vessel which led the convoy to Dubrovnik,
1 and that he was issued weapons in Dubrovnik and deployed to the Bosanka
3 Q. Yes, I apologise. Please continue.
4 A. He was wounded and taken prisoner there and transported to the
5 Meljine hospital, where I questioned him about that whole incident, that
6 is to say the case of the volunteers who made reinforcements for Dubrovnik
7 on the 31st of October.
8 Q. If I understood you correctly, did he come to Dubrovnik as a
9 volunteer on the "SLAVIJA" ship in the convoy led at the time by the
10 Yugoslav state president, Stjepan Mesic?
11 A. Yes, that's right.
12 Q. Can you tell the Trial Chamber, please, you said that he was from
13 the town of Koprivnica. So give us a rough estimate as to the distance
14 from Koprivnica to Dubrovnik and tell us where Koprivnica is located.
15 Give us the name of a larger town nearby.
16 A. Well, Koprivnica is in northern Croatia, near Zagreb. It's about
17 400 kilometres away from the Dubrovnik area.
18 Q. Did you have any information about the fact that other volunteers
19 came in from other parts of Croatia and broke through to the Dubrovnik
20 region in order to set up resistance to the JNA?
21 A. Yes. Volunteers did come forward, mostly from Western Herzegovina
22 but also from other parts of Croatia while you could still access
23 Dubrovnik, as well as on the ship called "SLAVIJA," the one you mentioned.
24 Q. Do you know, roughly speaking, how many such volunteers there were
25 from the "SLAVIJA" vessel who managed with the help of President Mesic to
1 reach Dubrovnik, to enter Dubrovnik, at that time?
2 A. Kos told me at the time that after the speech delivered by
3 President Mesic on the ship, 45 volunteers came forward, and they were
4 issued weapons and sent to the front.
5 Q. Did you perhaps ask Damir Kos who issued them weapons, who
6 distributed the weapons to them?
7 A. Yes, I did, and he explained that they were given weapons, as he
8 said, from the building he indicated. And I knew that to be the
9 headquarters of the Territorial Defence of Dubrovnik, while that
10 particular command was still in existence.
11 Q. Could you tell us, please, where the building of the command and
12 headquarters of the Dubrovnik Territorial Defence was in fact located.
13 Give us a closer idea.
14 A. Well, I can't remember. I can't actually locate it, but before
15 the war everybody knew where the TO headquarters for Dubrovnik were and
16 where they had their weapons stored. I think the Croatian National
17 Guards' Corps was put up there, too, during the Dubrovnik operation, or
18 the so-called Dubrovnik operation.
19 Q. And can you tell me how you came to know that that was where the
20 Croatian National Guards' Corps was put up, how did you come by that piece
21 of information?
22 A. Well, they were -- it was intelligence that we learnt and also
23 information from refugees and officers who had fled Dubrovnik. And I was
24 also told, I think, by Kos himself.
25 Q. Did he happen to tell you whether those 45 volunteers, all armed
1 and sent to the front lines of defence of Dubrovnik, whether they were all
2 sent there?
3 A. Yes, that's what I've said already.
4 Q. Tell me, please, did you yourself during your command of the
5 9th Military Naval Sector in the period between October and December 1991
6 have under your command any paramilitaries, paramilitary formations?
7 A. No, I did not.
8 Q. Could you tell me, please, whether the units of the 9th Military
9 Naval Sector took control of Cavtat.
10 A. Yes, they did.
11 Q. Do you recall the date when that happened?
12 A. It was the 16th of October.
13 Q. You as the commander, did you take the decision to implement that
15 A. Yes. Although I didn't enter with any combat troops and there was
16 no combat or fighting or any damages at all in town.
17 Q. Tell me, please, was Cavtat taken control of by only the units of
18 the 9th Military Naval Sector, or did the units of the 2nd Tactical Group
19 take part in that operation as well?
20 A. Yes. I think there was a detachment of the 3rd Battalion, a
21 company of the 3rd Battalion there, that they took part, but without
22 entering the town, just along the access roads into town without any
23 fighting. And I demanded that they should refrain from opening fire.
24 Q. What about General Stankovic, was he in command of the
25 2nd Tactical Group at that time?
1 A. Yes, that's right.
2 Q. Were you given any resistance when you tried to enter Cavtat?
3 A. No, we weren't met with any resistance. Somebody just shot a
4 projectile from a hunting rifle. Some individual from Cavtat shot from a
5 hunting rifle. That was all.
6 Q. Tell me, please, the units of the 9th Military Naval Sector, did
7 they then assume control of Cavtat?
8 A. Yes, that's right. It was in our zone, our area.
9 Q. And how did you regulate life and work in the town of Cavtat
10 itself? Did the local inhabitants stay on?
11 A. Yes. Nobody was evacuated from Cavtat of the local inhabitants.
12 They remained. And under such conditions, life went on without any major
13 restrictions or disturbances. And I remember that I even allowed people
14 to fish in the sea somewhat later on.
15 Q. Thank you. Now, tell me this, please: The units under your
16 command, did they also assume control of Mali and Veliki Zaton?
17 A. Yes, they did.
18 Q. Can you tell us, please, when this happened, what time period, if
19 you remember?
20 A. This was after the fall of Mokosica, which would make it towards
21 the end of November. Veliki and Mali Zaton were taken control of without
22 any fighting; everything was done peacefully.
23 Q. And did you take control of Mokosica?
24 A. Yes. We entered Mokosica without any combat, thanks to the
25 negotiations that had taken place with Minister Bernard Kouchner.
1 Q. Do you happen to remember what period of time that was, when that
3 A. I think it was on the 19th or 20th or 21st of November. That's
4 when we entered Mokosica together, and a small quantity of weapons were
5 surrendered to us by the inhabitants.
6 Q. Could you please tell me, since you've said that you entered
7 Mokosica together with Bernard Kouchner, whether before that you had any
8 communication with him and if so what type and to what extent before
9 entering Mokosica.
10 MS. SOMERS: Objection, Your Honour. The evidence is not that he
11 entered with Bernard Kouchner. There's no indication that
12 Bernard Kouchner occupied Mokosica.
13 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I apologise. Perhaps I didn't
14 understand what the witness said, but I will restate my question.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
16 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Did Bernard Kouchner enter Mokosica at all together with you?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I be allowed to explain,
19 Your Honour, with the Court's indulgence. Before entering Mokosica,
20 negotiations were held that there should be no fighting or combat and
21 shooting around town, so that there were no injuries or casualties which
22 had happened in October and to a certain extent at the start of November.
23 And on behalf of the 2nd Operational Group these negotiations were
24 conducted by Colonel Damjanovic. And he was promoted to the rank of
25 general subsequently. And I joined the team, the group, later on and we
1 demanded that weapons should be surrendered and that the units should
2 enter without any fighting. Now, after these negotiations that is what
3 actually happened, but we lost a soldier on the occasion. One of our
4 soldiers were killed because somebody shot from an ambush, from a rifle,
5 killing this one soldier. That's all.
6 JUDGE PARKER: And did you enter at the same time as Ben Kouchner?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I did, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
9 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
10 Q. Before entering Mokosica with Bernard Kouchner, could you tell us,
11 please, how many days before entering were those negotiations held and the
12 contacts you had, the ones you mentioned a moment ago.
13 A. Well, I can't say for sure, but the negotiations went on for
14 several days and the negotiations were led by -- or conducted by
15 Colonel Svicevic on behalf of the 2nd Operational Group. And I think I
16 think the negotiations were held in Cavtat. And that also taking part was
17 a representative of the European Community. Whether it was
18 Mr. Di Mistura, I'm not quite sure, but the negotiations did go on for
19 several days. And they were perhaps continued after Mokosica, but I did
20 not take part in them after that stage, so I'm not quite sure.
21 Q. In those negotiations was the Dubrovnik side represented at all?
22 A. Yes. There was a representative of the Crisis Staff taking part,
23 a man who always took part at negotiations -- or rather, there were two
24 gentlemen who always took part. They would always be present at
1 Q. Do you happen to remember a name? Can you give us a name?
2 A. One of them was called Kolic, and he was a civilian. And the
3 other man was an officer. He wore camouflage uniform, but I've forgotten
4 his name.
5 Q. Did Nikola Obuljen perhaps take part in those negotiations?
6 A. He may have. I don't remember him specifically, but he had
7 certainly taken part in the previous round of negotiations. He may have
8 taken part in these as well.
9 Q. Do you know if those negotiations resulted in any specific
10 agreement, if any document was signed, if there was an agreement between
11 the parties?
12 A. I don't think I can answer that question. I know that the area
13 surrounding Mokosica, because that was the area where I was involved,
14 where my units were involved, we tried to prevent combat from breaking
15 out. The negotiations took quite a while. And I'm not sure if any
16 document was signed eventually. Colonel Svicevic was directly
17 subordinated to General Strugar. He was the head of the negotiations
18 team -- the negotiating team, and he reported to him.
19 Q. Very well. What about your units? Did they take Zupa Dubrovacka?
20 A. Yes, they did, with the exception of a few villages just
21 underneath the main road. But they did take control of all the other
22 sections of Zupa.
23 Q. Do you remember the specific time period in which this happened?
24 A. That was on the 24th and 25th -- actually, it was on the 24th.
25 There was no actual fighting going on really --
1 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, of what month? Of what month? 24th?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] October. There was no fighting in
4 or around Zupa. After the landing at Kupari the paramilitary units had
5 withdrawn from Zupa and the 3rd and 4th Battalions had taken control of
6 some villages in their previous operations, some hamlets just next to the
7 main road. Therefore, there was no major fighting on that occasion or
8 destruction in the villages of Zupa Dubrovacka.
9 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. It goes without saying that all the days we have been referring to
11 relate to the year of 1991. Isn't that a fact?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. The units under your command, did they take control of Kupari,
15 A. Yes, they did. We landed at Kupari on the 24th of October.
16 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, just a small
17 correction. He said: "I landed at Kupari." And the interpretation
18 reads: "We landed at Kupari."
19 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
20 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. The occupation of Kupari took place on the same day that Zupa
22 Dubrovacka was taken, or is there a difference in terms of time?
23 A. On the 23rd and 24th of October was when the units of the 472nd
24 Brigade that were on the left flank of the combat deployment of the
25 brigade, meaning the 3rd and 4th Battalions, in their operations they
1 crushed the defence along the main focal points along the
2 Trebinje/Dubrovnik road, along the main strongholds along the
3 Trebinje/Dubrovnik road. So that once my units reached Zupa after the
4 landing, there were no defenders left there. They had pulled out taking
5 small paths and the main road across to Dubrovnik.
6 Q. So first you took control of Kupari, and then you reached
7 Zupa Dubrovacka the way you've just explained. Is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Was there any fighting around Kupari, the taking of Kupari itself?
10 A. Yes. Two artillery weapons were firing from Kupari, and those
11 were damaging us. My idea was by assault, by a small scale landing, to
12 take over the command that was located at Kupari and to crush the
13 defending unit and to practically bring the operation to an end, at least
14 as far as my side was concerned, the south-east of Dubrovnik. There was
15 sudden fighting that broke out. They were not expecting us, so the whole
16 thing took a very brief while and we suffered no losses at all. I believe
17 the enemy's casualties were very small also.
18 Q. Did you have any artillery support during that particular attack?
19 A. Yes. There was support from the artillery. They were firing. On
20 their weapons -- we were trying to neutralise their weapons, and yet we
21 tried to avoid hitting any of the hotels from land or sea during that
22 operation. But there was damage that was done to the hotels nevertheless.
23 Q. Can you please tell us who support -- who provided artillery
24 support from land and from sea.
25 A. There were three patrol boats from the sea and the support from
1 the land came, I think, from a battery of 130-millimetre and 85-millimetre
2 weapons. Probably the artillery weapons from Prevlaka, too, were
4 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it has been omitted in
5 the interpretation. "My artillery" is what the witness said.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Can you be more specific about the location where the battery of
9 130- and 85-millimetre guns was deployed?
10 A. I think they were somewhere between Gruda and the Cilipi airport.
11 The distance was between 8 and 10 kilometres.
12 Q. This distance between 8 and 10 kilometres between the battery and?
13 A. Between the battery and the Kupari area.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 The units under your command, did they take control of Dubac?
16 A. Yes. That was the 3rd Battalion of the 5th Brigade. That was the
17 only infantry unit that I had.
18 Q. What about the specific time period?
19 A. The 24th and 25th, the same day after the landing.
20 Q. So we're talking about October 1991?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. If I understand you correctly, those operations around Kupari,
23 Zupa Dubrovacka, and Dubac were connected, weren't they, at least in terms
24 of the time period, the time frame?
25 A. Yes. This was an operation that was planned and ordered by the
1 command of the 2nd Operational Group. Taking part in this operation,
2 there was some elements of my sector and elements of the 472nd Brigade.
3 Artillery fire was coordinated and ordered in terms of specific tasks by
4 Colonel Petkovic, who was the chief of the 2nd Artillery Group. There was
5 a proposal for the use of artillery that was adopted by the command of the
6 2nd Operational Group, and I received this document and told to carry it
8 Q. Is that the proposed use of artillery that we talked about during
9 the examination-in-chief that was signed by Petkovic, wasn't it?
10 A. Yes, that is the document.
11 Q. In the 9th VPS, did you have your own assistant or chief of
13 A. Yes. There was a chief of artillery, Lieutenant Colonel
14 Anto Cirjak, one of the few officers, superior officers of Croatian
15 nationality who stayed with the forces.
16 Q. In line with the proposals by Petkovic from the 2nd Operational
17 Group, did he control the use of artillery at the disposal of the 9th VPS?
18 A. Yes, he did.
19 Q. The units under your command, did they take control of Zarkovica
20 as well?
21 A. Zarkovica was taken by the 4th Battalion of the 472nd Brigade on
22 the 25th. There was no fighting. They simply took over a position that
23 had been abandoned by the Croatian forces, and there was no fighting
25 Q. I forgot to ask you about Dubac, when Dubac was taken by the
1 3rd Battalion of the 5th Brigade, was there any artillery fire in terms of
2 artillery support there?
3 A. Yes. There was a lot of firing there, given the fact that at
4 Dubac and above Dubac there's a quarry with 120-millimetre mortars
5 positioned there, rocket launchers as well, 120-millimetre guns, and there
6 was heavy firing there. Four of the mortars, rocket launchers, were
7 captured, and two of the guns, the 120-millimetre guns as well as two
8 Maljutka rocket launchers.
9 Q. Four mortars, two Maljutka rocket launchers, and two guns were
10 captured on that occasion. These were captured from Croatian paramilitary
11 units, weren't they?
12 A. Yes, from Croatian paramilitary units. I know that those mortars
13 were later taken to Titograd. I asked to leave them there, where they
14 were, but my request was not met.
15 Q. What about the Croatian units? If they had this kind of artillery
16 in those positions, did they use this artillery power to put up
17 resistance? How long did that last and how long had they been in that
18 position for prior to that?
19 A. They fired from those positions continually, as our units were
20 between Cavtat, meaning Zvekovica, Mlini and Srebreno as for my units
21 units. They were firing from that area. Also along the operational axis
22 of the 3rd and 4th Battalions, they operated in the direction of Ivanica,
23 Uskoplje, Gornji Brgat, Donji Brgat, Obod, and then down the road to
25 Q. Can you please tell me if your artillery from the 9th Military
1 Naval Sector ever fired on Zarkovica, Srdj, or Bosanka.
2 A. Yes, but not in that period of time. At that time, the main focus
3 of our operations was on Dubac, Brgat, Gornji Brgat, Donji Brgat, that was
4 taken then, yes. And Zarkovica as well, as well as the general area
5 around the Belvedere Hotel that was fortified.
6 Q. And when did your artillery fire on Srdj and Bosanka? When was
8 A. That was much later, in November. On the 26th of October, the
9 130-millimetre battery that I had was withdrawn towards the Radovici
10 barracks. And the 85-millimetre battery was returned to Prevlaka for
11 maintenance of its targeting equipment -- of its sighting equipment. I
12 reckoned that I would not need any artillery at that time, because we had
13 already got very close to the town of Dubrovnik itself. And we received
14 no further orders for operations to follow.
15 Q. You say that this was on the 26th of October?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Tell me, what about this artillery, was any of it returned to
18 these positions facing Dubrovnik after the 26th?
19 A. Yes. In the month of November, I think, sometime around the 8th
20 or 10th. The 130-millimetre battery returned to the area of Cilipi
22 Q. What about the 85-millimetre guns? After they were sighted, then
23 what happened?
24 A. I think they were brought, too, but I'm not sure. I'm not sure of
25 whether they were used, but they were probably in the area. These were
1 poor artillery pieces. Technically, they were not in very good shape.
2 Q. I'm sorry. Can you just be more precise concerning the
3 characteristics. These artillery pieces you refer to, what does this
4 actually refer to?
5 A. As I was saying, the 85-millimetre battery was technically in poor
6 condition. The cannons were faulty. They were -- they had even been
7 decommissioned previously, and we hardly ever used them, only for training
9 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, on page 57, between
10 lines 2 and 5, I do not see in the interpretation that these were cannons
11 that were faulty to a large degree. I do not see that in the
13 JUDGE PARKER: It does appear later at 57, lines 10, 11, 12.
14 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, the problem here is we
15 have to deal with very specific artillery vocabulary here. So faulty to a
16 large degree is not the right translation for "veliko rasturanje."
17 Perhaps the witness can explain exactly what this means. This is very
18 important and it is highly relevant. This should be explained.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic.
20 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'll try to deal with it.
21 I'll try to clarify it.
22 Q. Mr. Jokic, could you please explain for the transcript, so that it
23 would properly reflect everything that was said, could you give the
24 characteristics of these 85-millimetre cannons that you talked about.
25 A. Yes. Because they were used to a very large extent, these --
1 these cannons were obsolete and we were even decommissioned in the
2 military naval sector and district. For their sighting equipment --
3 because of their sighting equipment, which had to be readjusted all the
4 time. And also because of the barrels themselves. When there was firing
5 from these barrels, there was dissipation. So these cannons were not
6 used. This battery was not used for targets that included several points,
7 and we hardly ever used them. I don't know the exact date, but it is a
8 fact that both of these batteries were resubordinated to the commander of
9 the 2nd Tactical Group. I found them under his subordination when I came
10 to the theatre. Because, as far as my narrow zone is concerned, where my
11 territorial units operated, from the sea to the road between Herceg-Novi
12 and Dubrovnik, there were no artillery targets all the way to Cavtat. And
13 in Cavtat, there was no fighting. So for taking these villages, we did
14 not even use the artillery.
15 Q. Tell me, until when was this artillery in the 2nd Tactical Group?
16 A. I would not know the exact date, but I think that on the 21st of
17 October the 2nd Tactical Group was disbanded. Then certainly -- or
18 perhaps two or three days before that, these batteries were returned to
20 Q. Thank you.
21 I would like to ask you, and you are an expert in these matters,
22 could you explain to the Trial Chamber and all of us, when you say:
23 Greater dissipation or dispersion when barrels are used and when cannons
24 are fired, can you explain this to us. Can you explain it lay terms, what
25 this actually means so that we would understand.
1 A. Yes. The shells of a battery or the hits of a battery fall within
2 an ellipse of about 100 metres of width and let us say the length is about
3 50 metres. It depends on the distance. It depends on the volley. If
4 this ellipse is larger -- or rather, if the hits miss, either in terms of
5 direction or width, if these distances are not -- are too big, then this
6 is unacceptably imprecise, these volleys are unacceptably imprecise. So
7 then the barrels are changed and so on.
8 Q. Thank you. This was a very graphic explanation, and this ellipsis
9 you refer to now was clear. So when you say that there is greater
10 dissipation of these volleys, how much dispersion is there when you're
11 talking about a greater dispersion? What is the range that we are talking
13 A. Well, I am not an artillery man myself. I'm a naval man, a rocket
14 man. But I did learn this. I think that we can look at it this way. If
15 the distances are 20 to 50 per cent larger, if the margin of error is that
16 big, then there has to be a correction.
17 Q. I did not understand this. When you said if the distances are 20
18 to 50 per cent bigger.
19 A. I was referring to the ellipsis. If the ellipsis is there and
20 it -- and if it is 20 to 50 per cent bigger than it's supposed to be, then
21 something has to be done in order to decrease it, either by way of
22 sighting equipment or cannons or other parts of the cannon or the battery.
23 Q. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if I understood you correctly within
24 the dimensions of an ellipsis, if during dispersion the dimensions go up
25 by 20 to 50 per cent, then this is this too great dispersion. And then
1 sighting has to be readjusted on these cannons. Am I right?
2 A. Yes. It's more or less along those lines.
3 JUDGE PARKER: Is that a convenient time, Mr. Rodic?
4 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
5 --- Recess taken at 12.22 p.m.
6 --- On resuming at 12.54 p.m.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Rodic.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Q. Mr. Jokic, tell me, please, on the 5th of December, 1991, at that
10 meeting with the Croatian ministers, when you were discussing the
11 cease-fire in Cavtat, was it agreed on that occasion that the Croatian
12 side would accept a surrender of weapons and an exit out of town by the
14 A. No. That's not what was agreed upon then. We gave up on that
15 particular request.
16 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Could I please have the assistance of
17 the usher.
18 Q. Have you seen this document?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Is this your interview that was published in the weekly of Nin on
21 the 15th of November, 2001?
22 A. Yes, I think so. Yes.
23 Q. If you look at page 1 of the document in the Serbian language
24 version, is it correct that there is a number there, 04-AM/JM, two
25 signatures, and on the right-hand side the date, the 5th of July, 2002.
1 Is that what it says in the corner?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Is any of the signatures on this document yours?
4 A. Yes, on the first page.
5 Q. And who is the second person who signed this document?
6 A. I don't know whose signature this is.
7 Q. Was there anybody else with you then when you signed this?
8 A. Well, probably the investigator, but I don't know. I don't know
9 who it was.
10 Q. On the 5th of July, 2002, did you give an interview to the
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Did you give them this document or did they show it to you?
14 A. I think they showed it to me.
15 Q. During the interview, did you have anything specific to say
16 regarding this document?
17 A. I did.
18 Q. On page 3 of the Serbian version, there is a picture, and I can
19 recognise you. Tell me, this other man with the moustache, is that
20 Dusan Mihajlovic, Minister of the Interior of the Republic of Serbia at
21 that time, of course?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Can you tell me, in this particular paragraph in the Serbian
24 version, to the left of the picture, there is a sentence that I am going
25 to read out: "The most serious case of operations around Dubrovnik was on
1 the 6th of December. On the 5th of December, I took part in
2 negotiations" -- I'm sorry. May I just note that this is on page 5 of the
3 English translation, the last paragraph.
4 So I am going to repeat. "On the 5th of December, I was involved
5 in negotiations with people from Dubrovnik. And in Cavtat, we agreed that
6 there would be a halt to fighting, that they would accept to surrender
7 their arms, and the volunteers would leave town. Three Croatian ministers
8 participated in the negotiations. I remember the minister of maritime
9 affairs, Davorin Rudolf, who told me that Croatia could not tolerate two
10 major defeats, the fall of Dubrovnik after the fall of Vukovar, which was
11 taken on the 18th of November. And on the 6th of December, a truce was
12 supposed to come into force at 12.00."
13 Is it correct that in this interview you say that they accepted
14 the surrender of weapons and the volunteers leaving town?
15 A. Yes, that's what it says. That's what's written here.
16 Q. Can you explain the difference to me, the difference between this
17 statement -- or rather, this what you said in the interview to Nin and
18 also the answer that you gave to my question a few minutes ago that these
19 things were not agreed upon.
20 A. No, I did not say that they were not agreed upon. I said that
21 we -- or rather, I gave up on these two particular items -- or rather,
22 three items, volunteers, weapons, and returning to the situation of the
23 1st of October regarding the number of MUP members in Dubrovnik.
24 Q. The next thing I'm going to ask you is on page 6 of the English
25 version, the one but last paragraph. The one but last question. And in
1 the Serbian version it's right beneath the photograph. A question was
2 put, and I am going to read the second paragraph of the answer in the
3 Serbian version, your answer to that question.
4 So the question was: "Was the JNA's task to take Dubrovnik? It
5 was said and written that the plan was to take both Dubrovnik and the
6 territory as far as the Neretva River, which were to remain in
8 That was the journalist's question. And in the second paragraph
9 of your answer, that's the part that I'm interested in, you say: "I never
10 saw, and even now I could not find the initial command in the Dubrovnik
11 operation. But I think that the only objective was to take Srdj. That's
12 what my chief of staff, Milan Zec, told me, but he also said that this had
13 been abandoned."
14 A. I'm sorry. I don't know where this is. I couldn't find it.
15 Q. Underneath your picture in the middle, your picture -- you and
16 Mihajlovic together in this picture.
17 A. Yes, yes.
18 Q. So now there are two paragraphs in your answer, and now I read out
19 the last -- the second, actually, paragraph of that answer.
20 A. Yes. Well, I don't understand your question. What is your
22 Q. My question is: When was it that Zec told you that, that the only
23 objective of the Dubrovnik operation was to take Srdj?
24 A. Well, that's not the way it was, the question.
25 Q. That was my understanding on the basis of your answer.
1 A. Well, I did not revise this text. I could not have revised it.
2 The substance of this text and all the answers I gave to the questions is
3 fine, but some parts are very imprecise. I saw this text of course much
4 later, considerably after its publication.
5 In fact, if we're dealing about the objective to take control of
6 Srdj, I wanted to say that while we were analysing the text of the
7 directive itself, in the directive that we analysed, which I don't think
8 is the right one because there's another one. Now, in that second
9 directive it says: "Take control of Srdj."
10 But of course that can't be the only objective; that is quite
11 clear, clear to everyone, every soldier, not only commanders but all
12 soldiers are aware of that. This is a very free interpretation and goes
13 as far as being incorrect and does not correspond to how things stood.
14 Q. Have I understood you correctly then that the paragraph that I
15 read out, which is your response to the question from the journalist, is a
16 very free interpretation on the part of that journalist?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Going as far as being completely incorrect?
19 A. Yes. Precisely so.
20 Q. Now, what about the next paragraph? I'm going to read that out.
21 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] And it is on page 7 of the English
22 version, paragraph 3 from the top.
23 Q. Mr. Jokic, it is the next column, next to the one we've just read
24 out from, paragraph 2 from the top in the Serbian version it says: "The
25 Admiral again approached the military archives. This time they allowed
1 him to read the documents, but he was not allowed to take a single scrap
2 of paper or make any photocopies."
3 Could you tell me, please, whether that's true.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Did you provide the Prosecution with any documents?
6 A. No. I didn't give any documents out from the archives, just what
7 I received from certain officers with whom I had conversations to inform
8 me before I went to The Hague, when I looked into the matter to see how
9 the shelling of Dubrovnik came about and in preparation for my defence
10 later on. But I didn't extract a single document from the archives. I
11 couldn't do that, nor did I do that.
12 Q. Can you tell me, please, whether you gave any military document to
13 the representatives of the OTP during your conversations?
14 A. Yes. Those I received from officers that I talked to and who had
15 those documents with them, on them.
16 Q. Could you tell us what documents those were, then.
17 A. They were documents from the Dubrovnik operation. I don't know
18 exactly which ones, but they were a set of documents, perhaps five or six
19 of them. And then some of my own statements, my interviews, while I was
20 the minister and later on.
21 Q. What else did you provide them with?
22 A. Well, I don't know what you mean. If you remind me, I'll be able
23 to tell you. I don't know which you have in mind.
24 Q. Well, if you remember during the examination-in-chief, a number of
25 documents were dealt with and tendered into evidence as Prosecution
1 exhibits. Now, among those documents, if you remember, are there any you
2 gave to the representatives of the OTP?
3 A. I said I gave them several documents which I myself had received
4 from the officers that I talked to, to provide me with information. They
5 were my own officers or officers belonging to the 2nd Operational Group
6 with whom I talked.
7 Q. Can you tell me who gave you those documents in the first place.
8 A. I don't know whether I should.
9 Q. Why?
10 A. Well, I don't know why they enjoy -- whether they enjoy any
11 protection, whether it's confidential, and whether it would be in their
12 own interests for me to do that.
13 Q. Did you give to the representatives of the OTP a JNA map on which
14 it said "national defence state secret?"
15 A. Yes, I did.
16 Q. Well, did you ask anybody for permission to do so, whether you
17 were permitted to hand over documents of that nature?
18 A. Well, the officer who -- in whose possession those maps were and
19 who drew up the maps, I don't know how he came by the maps to begin with.
20 He was given permission I think by the command of the 2nd Operational
21 Group to keep those documents, and that included the maps. That's the
22 explanation he gave me.
23 Q. Who gave you that explanation?
24 A. The officer from the command of the 2nd Operational Group.
25 Q. Which officer? Can you give us his name?
1 A. Well, I've just said that it's not my duty to state his name,
2 unless we go into private session.
3 Q. May I ask -- would you please answer my question.
4 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, objection. The witness has indicated he
5 would feel more comfortable giving a full answer if it were in private
6 session. And perhaps if I can convey that through an objection, I would
7 do that as well.
8 JUDGE PARKER: Do you have any objection to private session,
9 Mr. Rodic?
10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do have an objection
11 for us to go into private session for a response to my question, in view
12 of the fact that all the documents that we're discussing and the ones that
13 I'm asking questions about here were exhibits that were tendered as
14 Prosecution Exhibits, and this was done at -- or in open session, which
15 means that they were accessible to everybody, everybody could see them
16 outside this courtroom. So that is the basic gist of my objection.
17 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, that is not the crux of the issue with
18 the witness. He's made it clear, from our perspective, that the names are
19 what is of concern to him.
20 JUDGE PARKER: And the relevance of that, Ms. Somers?
21 MS. SOMERS: If the witness is concerned about perhaps putting
22 certain persons at risk then -- and yet the Chamber would find the
23 information relevant and helpful, then perhaps private session would be
24 more appropriate.
25 [Trial Chamber confers]
1 JUDGE PARKER: It is the view of the Chamber that if you wish to
2 persist to get an answer, Mr. Rodic, we will go into private session.
3 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, in that case and in view
4 of the grounds for my objection, I'll withdraw that. I don't think that
5 anything is challenged or contested. But if that is your ruling, then I
6 will give up on that question.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, Mr. Rodic.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Mr. Jokic, did you personally have any documents of your own in
10 your possession, that is, which you handed over to the Prosecution?
11 A. No, not from the Dubrovnik operation. As far as official
12 documents are concerned, I didn't have a single one. What I did have was
13 several while I was a minister in the Serbian government. And then some
14 extracts and excerpts from newspapers, some provisions which touched upon
15 the problems they were interested in. But as far as official documents
16 are concerned, I did not have a single one. When I retired, all my
17 notebooks, working notebooks, wartime notebooks and diaries, were taken
18 away. So I was left without a single scrap of paper which would help me
19 refresh my memory of those days and events.
20 Q. Can you tell me who confiscated those documents?
21 A. The security service.
22 Q. Were you detained, taken into custody, arrested?
23 A. No, never.
24 Q. Well, how then were they able to take these documents away from
1 A. They did so when I handed over my duties. I had to leave all my
2 notebooks behind on the table, on my desk. I wasn't allowed to take any
3 papers or documents with me. That's how they did that.
4 Q. Was that in May 1992?
5 A. Yes. That's right, it was.
6 Q. You said a moment ago in response to question from me linked to
7 that portion of the interview which you gave to the weekly magazine Nin
8 that you did have a chance to read through the documents in the archives,
9 but that you were not permitted to take out any document or to make any
10 photocopies. Is that correct?
11 A. Yes, it is.
12 Q. So that means that from the archives you reviewed those documents
13 in, you -- did you just review those documents, or did your lawyers do so,
15 A. Before I left for The Hague, I took a look at them myself. And
16 after my return, a long time afterwards, maybe half a year later, we were
17 given permission to access those -- the documents, but not to take them
18 out or to photocopy them.
19 Q. Did you look at -- review the documents yourself, only you, or
20 your lawyers as well?
21 A. I said my lawyers, too. My lawyers and myself. They spent more
22 time reviewing them and two investigators as well.
23 Q. And you claim that you did not take a single document out for use
24 from that archive?
25 A. No, absolutely not. Towards the end, if you want to have full
1 information about this --
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, may I be allowed to
3 give an explanation?
4 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We asked, on the basis to access to
6 military archives, for them to photocopy -- provide photocopies of about
7 600 documents for us. However, I was already due to go to The Hague to
8 declare myself, to plead. And when we were provided with 60 documents, I
9 think, approximately 60 documents, of which 50 per cent were such poor
10 photocopies - perhaps this was intentionally done - that they were
11 absolutely illegible. So from these documents, what you're asking me
12 about was probably one of those documents, which are in possession of the
14 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Does that mean that you gave the Prosecution these 60 documents?
16 A. No, I didn't give them anything. All I'm saying is that my
17 lawyers were given 60 documents, 50 per cent of which were useless because
18 they were poor photocopies and illegible. And all I'm saying is probably
19 they were forwarded to the Prosecution.
20 Q. Well, did your lawyers provide the OTP with these documents?
21 A. I don't know. I don't know what the procedure is. They told me
22 that if the Prosecution provided with any documents, then the Defence
23 teams should be, too. They must be disclosed to both parties.
24 Q. The interviews you mentioned having handed over to the OTP, do you
25 mean by that the interviews that you granted to newspapers and that
1 appeared in newspaper articles?
2 A. Yes, yes. That's what I meant.
3 Q. Do you know how many such interviews you handed over to the
4 Prosecution, because I assume these are your own personal documents?
5 A. Yes, that's right. But -- well, perhaps two or three interviews.
6 One was from the ministry, and I think the other two were given while I
7 was the commander -- or rather, immediately after I retired.
8 Q. And that doesn't include the Nin interview that you have before
9 you now, does it?
10 A. I don't think so. This interview -- they gave me this copy, this
11 interview. And I was a little surprised and taken aback. And we
12 discussed some of the incorrect points. And I said that I did not review
13 the text or redact it, but that I was in The Hague and that there were
14 certain things that were incorrect.
15 Q. That means that in the interview with the Prosecution, you
16 answered their questions in detail with respect to this interview that
17 appeared in the weekly magazine Nin?
18 A. Well, I don't know how detailed it was, but yes, they did ask me
19 what they were interested in learning. I can't say. We didn't go item by
20 item. We just discussed the questions that they were interested in.
21 Q. Very well. Thank you. I should now like to ask you to look at
22 page 1 of the B/C/S version, which is in English page 3. The last
23 paragraph on that page, and there's a question and answer there. Page 3
24 for the English, and page 1 in the B/C/S. It is the last paragraph, and
25 you were asked the following: "The military units under your command,
1 were they military units or did they include territorials and
3 And then on the next page it says: "Were militaries under your
4 command or were territorials and paramilitary formations also there?"
5 I read that out and then on the next page under your photograph
6 you begin your answer. You say: "We didn't have any paramilitary
7 formations. There were Yugoslav People's Army units there, which were
8 reinforced with reserve forces. And we also had territorial units. They
9 were companies mobilised by the Montenegrin Territorial Defence staff."
10 Is that correct?
11 A. Yes, that's correct. It's a bit inaccurate. JNA units reinforced
12 with reserve forces, because the JNA units already include some of the
13 reserve forces, but with the exception of that particular bit, everything
14 else is correct.
15 Q. The title of the interview, the heading, is it correct?
16 A. Yes, it is.
17 Q. Therefore, this is not a question of a liberal interpretation by
18 the journalist? That's what you stated, the journalist. I'm not guilty.
19 A. Yes, but I certainly wasn't the one who told him to give this
20 title to the interview. It was part of the interview that I said that I
21 believed I wasn't guilty.
22 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, can we have this tendered
23 into evidence as a Defence exhibit and be assigned an exhibit number?
24 JUDGE PARKER: Yes. It will be received.
25 THE REGISTRAR: This document is marked D45.
1 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Mr. Jokic, correct me if I'm wrong about the date. But in October
3 2001, an indictment was made public against you, General Strugar,
4 Vladimir Kovacevic, and Milan Zec, after which you surrendered to
5 The Hague Tribunal of your own free will in November of 2001. I believe
6 it was in February 2002 that you were provisionally released. Is that
8 A. Yes, that's correct.
9 Q. Is it true that on the 27th of August, 2003, you faced a Trial
10 Chamber of the Tribunal, and you pleaded guilty on all counts, didn't you?
11 A. Yes, I did.
12 Q. Can you tell me more about the period between October 2001 and the
13 27th of August, 2003. Were you preparing your defence, given the fact
14 that you had pleaded not guilty in that period of time?
15 A. Yes, I was preparing my defence.
16 Q. As you went about preparing your defence, you reviewed all the
17 documents that you were given by the OTP, didn't you?
18 A. Yes, I did.
19 Q. Did you read specifically all the witness statements that the OTP
20 disclosed to you?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. While preparing your defence, did you talk to any witnesses who
23 were to testify on your behalf? I'm talking about that particular period
24 of time.
25 A. I talked to quite a number of officers who would then inform me
1 about those developments in a proper way, because they themselves had
2 taken part. And those were potential witnesses, too. But I did not
3 specifically ask anyone to appear as a witness or to give an official
4 statement to me or to any of my investigators.
5 Q. The witnesses you interviewed, were those mostly officers from the
6 9th VPS, the sector under your command between October and December 1991?
7 A. Yes, mostly.
8 Q. Did you also talk to officers who were members of your staff at
9 the time, in the 9th VPS?
10 A. Yes, I did talk to some of them.
11 Q. Were some of those officers from the command of the
12 2nd Operational Group?
13 A. Yes, some who lived in Belgrade, some who were retired, some of
14 those I saw of those who came to talk to me.
15 Q. So the documents you handed over to the OTP were documents that
16 you originally received from those potential witnesses, the officers that
17 you spoke to. Is that correct?
18 A. No. Those were no potential witnesses. They declared they did
19 not wish to be considered as potential witnesses.
20 Q. When they talked to you, did they at least tell you that they
21 wished to assist you with your defence and that they were therefore
22 handing material over to you that was in their possession?
23 A. Yes, they did say that.
24 Q. What about the maps that were handed over to the OTP and that were
25 tendered into evidence during the examination-in-chief? What about those
1 maps? Did they, too, come from the same officers that you spoke to?
2 A. Yes, they do.
3 Q. Can you tell me or confirm with any degree of certainty that those
4 maps are fully accurate or authentic, should I say, with an accurate
5 representation of all the markings that the maps bear?
6 A. I believe so, as far as their authenticity is concerned. There
7 are some inaccuracies [Realtime transcript read in error "accuracies"],
8 though, because the maps were not properly drawn by those who were in
9 charge of that, with the command of the 2nd Operational Group. But those
10 are no material inaccuracies. I believe the maps are authentic.
11 Q. Are those the original maps?
12 A. Those are maps that were copied. Copies were made based on the
14 MS. SOMERS: Excuse me, Your Honour. There's a mistake of
15 consequence in the transcript, page 75, line 17. The witness said:
16 "There are some inaccuracies," and it has been shown as "accuracies."
17 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Ms. Somers.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I may -- if I may
19 just be allowed to say a couple of words about the maps. When I went
20 through the archive, the files, I established that in addition to my own
21 documents, my combat orders, my orders, my reports, there wasn't a single
22 map, a single working map, for any of my decisions or maps that were part
23 of any of my orders, which struck me as really strange. You have an
24 entire archive, all the files, and not a single map from the commander of
25 one of the naval sectors. That was the main reason I was surprised that
1 someone had taken those away. The main reason was for me to get another
2 map that talked about the way that the Dubrovnik operation was run. That
3 was the reason behind it. That was my main motive. And in terms of
4 myself preparing my defence, I think I was perfectly within my rights to
5 do that. Even now I can't tell you where those maps of the commander of
6 the 9th Sector are.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation].
8 Q. Mr. Jokic, when you said redrawn or modified, for the benefit of
9 the interpretation and transcript please let us clarify. Are these copied
10 maps any different from photocopied maps? And if so, how?
11 A. There are no differences, no discrepancies. They are completely
13 Q. In terms of the technical procedure, that's what I want to know.
14 The maps that you handed over to the OTP, are those photocopies or one map
15 was used to copy markings on to a different map, from that original map
16 I'm saying?
17 A. It's a case of the latter. Details were copied from the original
18 map, the marks made on the original map. Those were not photocopied.
19 MS. SOMERS: Excuse me, Your Honour. I would have to object.
20 There was a word put in the mouth of the witness. Page 76, line 18.
21 Mr. Jokic, when you said "redrawn or modified," we checked the record and
22 other than the use once of the word "modified," it doesn't appear that the
23 witness ever used that term.
24 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if you allow. Again,
25 this is a problem with the transcript. The witness keeps talking about
1 redrawn maps, and we have the word "copy" here. He keeps saying
2 "redrawn," but the interpretation you are receiving is copied. Therefore,
3 in this last situation that my learned friend and colleague is talking
4 about, the word that is actually being used is "redrawn," although the
5 word in the transcript is "copied," if I'm not mistaken. Thank you.
6 MS. SOMERS: My objection is to either the use of the word
7 modified in the words of the witness which does not appear on the record
8 by Mr. Rodic, as if quoting from the witness.
9 JUDGE PARKER: I think we will proceed on the basis that the
10 evidence of this witness in this respect was that the map was redrawn,
11 full stop. And if you could proceed from there, Mr. Rodic.
12 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honour. I
13 merely wanted to use these questions to explain the difference between a
14 map that is copied and a map that is redrawn.
15 Q. Mr. Jokic, were you the one who did the redrawing from the
16 original map on to a new map?
17 A. I made sure that every map that was drawn was faithful to the
19 Q. So who did the actual redrawing?
20 A. Those who know how to do it, officers that were in charge of that
21 sort of task their whole lives while they were still in active service.
22 Q. Are these the officers that were willing to assist you in
23 preparing your defence?
24 A. No. Those weren't the same officers.
25 Q. Are you saying that you took the maps to be redrawn by officers
1 with whom you never ever discussed the subject of your defence?
2 A. Those were friends, officers who were friends, and who took no
3 part in the Dubrovnik operation, but by the very nature of their job they
4 know how to make maps. They are qualified for that in every way.
5 Q. What then are the names of those officers?
6 MS. SOMERS: Objection, Your Honour. The witness has indicated
7 earlier he does not care to deal in giving out names of persons, unless
8 it's in private session.
9 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I believe we're dealing
10 with a technical matter here, because that's what redrawing these maps
11 means. It's a purely technical procedure. I see no reason to go into
12 private session, but obviously it's up to you to decide.
13 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, I believe it's all part of the same
14 issue of persons who may or may not -- for whose security the witness is
15 concerned and I believe it has no difference than the earlier grounds for
17 JUDGE PARKER: Are you able to indicate your position on this,
18 Mr. Jokic?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I am reluctant to give
20 the names of those persons. They are not in any way involved in terms of
21 knowing anything else about the subject. The only thing those people are
22 qualified for is to draw. Considering the risk, the considerable risk, at
23 which they might be put and having in mind the fact that these maps are
24 confidential -- or they were classified at the time, I am not willing to
25 disclose the names.
1 JUDGE PARKER: The Chamber takes the same position as before,
2 Mr. Rodic. If you insist on an answer, we go into private session.
3 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] We shall move on, in that case,
4 Your Honour. We have several questions left. I'll just leave this out.
5 JUDGE PARKER: I doubt if you've got time for several questions.
6 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Two questions, Your Honour. Two
7 questions. I believe we'll have sufficient time for that.
8 Q. Mr. Jokic, how then are we to believe in the accuracy of those
9 maps? They are not the original maps. These were maps that were redrawn.
10 A. I said I believe these maps are faithful to the original, and I
11 stand by that opinion. I'm not sure if there is another way at all for me
12 to convince you.
13 Q. Very well then. Just another question. By way of clarification
14 you said that those maps used to be classified but no longer are. What I
15 want to know is what your position is in that matter. Can you please
16 elucidate. Are these maps classified or not?
17 A. Well, I believe the degree of confidentiality 14 years later - and
18 we are talking about an operation that was run by an army that is no
19 longer around in a state that is no longer around - after all those
20 developments, this one state ceased to exist and a wholly new state was
21 created, or rather, two new states. I think this concept of something
22 being classified or confidential is so academic that we could do better
23 than to treat it with a certain degree of liberty.
24 Q. Is it your view then that if this is no longer classified, you
25 still refuse to give the names of the people who informed you about this
1 and who helped you with this, or will you now agree with me?
2 A. I think you misunderstood me --
3 MS. SOMERS: Objection, Your Honour. The witness never refused.
4 The witness he would do so, if in private session.
5 JUDGE PARKER: We fully understand the position.
6 You were saying something, Admiral.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. What I wish to
8 say is the following: Prior to my arrival in The Hague, I requested to
9 inspect my combat documents. The head of the archive, Colonel Prsic, I
10 believe I can say his name now because this person has retired and I don't
11 think there is any substantial risk involved. He told me that that was
12 highly classified material and that I would not be allowed to inspect that
13 material. I said, "Well, these are documents I made myself and I signed."
14 This is a tactical document that talks about combat that went on 12 years
15 ago, so why on earth would I not be allowed to see it? He said, "These
16 are the rules. These are the rules of filing and this is how the archive
17 is used." And that's why I am giving you my pragmatic position on these
18 documents in general, documents that may prove helpful in this case.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
20 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I am finished for the
21 day, yes.
22 JUDGE PARKER: We will adjourn then for the weekend and resume on
23 Monday morning.
24 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
25 at 1.47 p.m., to be reconvened on Monday,
1 the 5th day of April, 2004,
2 at 9.00 a.m.