1 Monday, 14 February 2011
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Good morning to everybody in the courtroom.
6 The next witness should be brought in, please.
7 Good morning, Mr. Tolimir.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May peace reign in this house and
9 may these proceedings and today's day end up in accordance with God's
10 will and not my will.
11 Have I one request, Your Honour. The witnesses that were already
12 announced, their sequence should not really be changed before the
13 weekend, if at all possible, because it causes us lot of trouble. My
14 lawyer found out only on Friday that there was going to be a change in
15 the sequence of witnesses. It really shouldn't be permitted that a
16 witness could leave the stand during the testifying and then another
17 witness brought in instead of him.
18 Thank you.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I would recommend to discuss this topic at the
20 beginning of next session. Now the witness is present. I think that had
21 something to do with the availability of the last witness, Dr. Brunborg,
22 if I'm not mistaken.
23 Mr. Vanderpuye.
24 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
25 I would be happy to address this issue also at the -- at the
1 next -- at the break, rather. But it does have to do with the
2 availability of the witness that was previously on the stand and also the
3 availability of this witness and our ability to accommodate his testimony
4 this week.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, the Chamber is in the same position
6 as you. We only learned on Friday that there will be another order of
7 witnesses this week.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: First of all, good morning, sir. Mr. Momcilovic,
10 welcome to the Tribunal. Could you please read aloud the affirmation on
11 the card which is shown to you now.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning. I solemnly declare
13 that I will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 WITNESS: BOZO MOMCILOVIC
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much. Please sit down and make
17 yourself comfortable.
18 Mr. Vanderpuye is now examining you.
19 Mr. Vanderpuye.
20 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President. Good morning to you,
21 Your Honours and good morning to everyone.
22 Examination by Mr. Vanderpuye:
23 Q. And good morning to you, Mr. Momcilovic.
24 Your testimony I anticipate is going to be a lot shorter this
25 time than it was the last time. But let me get right to it.
1 Do you recall testifying in the case of Prosecutor versus
2 Vujadin Popovic et al on the 22nd of August, 2007?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Have you had an opportunity to review the entirety of that
5 testimony before coming to court today?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And was that upon your reviewing an audio recording of your
9 A. Yes, yes.
10 Q. Mr. Momcilovic, having listened to your testimony, does it fairly
11 and accurately reflect what you would say were you to be examined and
12 asked the same questions?
13 A. They would be the same.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 MR. VANDERPUYE: Mr. President, at this time I'd like to offer
16 into evidence Mr. Momcilovic's previous testimony. That is, 65 ter 6632,
17 and 6633, as well as the associated exhibits, which are 65 ter numbers
18 2075, 3407, and that's it.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: These documents will be received. The first one,
20 65 ter 6632, under seal.
21 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 6632 shall be
22 assigned Exhibit P1808, admitted under seal.
23 65 ter 6633 shall be assigned Exhibit P1809.
24 65 ter document 2075 shall be assigned Exhibit P1810.
25 And 65 ter document 3407 shall be assigned Exhibit P1811.
1 Thank you.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
3 Mr. Vanderpuye.
4 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 I have a brief summary of the witness's previous testimony I'd
6 like to read into the record.
7 Bozo Momcilovic was born in the village of Opravdici in Bratunac
8 municipality. He served out his compulsory military service with the JNA
9 in 1980 through 1981 and subsequently completed his degree in economics
10 in Belgrade in 1986. In 1987, he worked for the state-owned Brickworks
11 factory in Bratunac, known as Ciglana, and between 1992 and 1994, he
12 carried out his work obligation as its general manager.
13 In October 1994, Mr. Momcilovic was mobilised and assigned to the
14 1st Battalion of the Bratunac Brigade as the assistant commander for
15 logistics. He was assigned the rank of sergeant. Two months later, he
16 was assigned to the Bratunac Brigade Command as the desk officer for
17 logistics, serving under the brigade assistant commander for logistics,
18 Major Dragoslav Trisic.
19 On 4 July 1995, during the VRS operation against the Srebrenica
20 enclave, Mr. Momcilovic was reassigned to the Drina Corps's forward
21 command post, IKM, in Pribicevac. He began his assignment the following
22 day, and was tasked with co-ordinating logistics there. Pribicevac is
23 located at an elevation south-east of Srebrenica and from which part of
24 the Srebrenica valley can be viewed in military operations observed.
25 Mr. Momcilovic remained at the IKM through the 11 of July, receiving his
1 orders through General Radislav Krstic, then the corps Chief of Staff,
2 and Major Jevdjevic, Milenko Jevdjevic; he was chief of the Drina Corps
3 5th Communications Battalion.
4 In addition to units from the 3rd Battalion of the
5 Bratunac Brigade which had its command in Pribicevac, Mr. Momcilovic was
6 aware that other VRS units had been or were being deployed in the area
7 and its vicinity, including units from Zvornik, Sekovici, and from the
8 workers battalion. Senior Main Staff and Drina Corps officers also
9 frequented the IKM, including the commander of the VRS Main Staff,
10 General Mladic, whom the witness saw a few times, and
11 General Milenko Zivanovic, then the commander of the Drina Corps.
12 In the afternoon of 9 July 1995, Mr. Momcilovic saw VRS
13 Main Staff assistant commander for morale, moral, religious and legal
14 affairs, General Milan Gvero at the IKM. He saw General Gvero arrive
15 together with Major Trisic and the president of the Executive Board of
16 Bratunac municipality. According to Momcilovic, by this time, the VRS
17 had completed the separation of the Srebrenica and Zepa enclaves and they
18 were no longer -- they were no longer engaged in related combat
20 Mr. Momcilovic recalled that General Gvero, Major Trisic, and the
21 Executive Board president went to see General Krstic who was some 30
22 metres away where they met for about an hour. Major Jevdjevic and
23 Colonel Vukota, presumably, Vukota Vukovic, and others, were also
24 present. Throughout their visit that day, General Gvero, Major Trisic
25 and the Executive Board president remained and subsequently left
1 together. On or about 11th -- the 11th of July, 1995, Mr. Momcilovic saw
2 Drina Corps chief of security, Lieutenant-Colonel Vujadin Popovic, and
3 VRS Main Staff chief of security, Colonel Ljubisa Beara at the
4 Drina Corps IKM in Pribicevac. Miroslav Deronjic, president Karadzic's
5 so-called civil commissioner for Srebrenica was also present.
6 Mr. Momcilovic believed that they were there to observe Srebrenica from
7 the IKM, but he was not sure if they had any other purposes. Although
8 Mr. Momcilovic knew Deronjic, he had seen neither
9 Lieutenant-Colonel Popovic, nor Colonel Beara before. However, other
10 people at the IKM told him at that time who they were and, in particular,
11 that they were security officers.
12 During his testimony, Mr. Momcilovic further described Colonel
13 Beara and Lieutenant-Colonel Popovic and confirmed having later seen both
14 on television. He had no doubt as to their identity. Mr. Momcilovic
15 testified that he completed his assigned in Pribicevac on the 11th of
16 July, 1995. Thereafter, he left on holiday and returned to the
17 Bratunac Brigade on or about the 16th of July. He claimed to have no
18 knowledge of the circumstances concerning the removal of the Muslim
19 population from Potocari or concerning the detention of Muslim prisoners
20 during this period.
21 Your Honours, that concludes my summary and I have a few addition
22 questions for Mr. Momcilovic.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Go ahead, please.
24 MR. VANDERPUYE:
25 Q. Sir, I have just a few questions for you.
1 Let me start with just a couple of background questions. First,
2 are you currently working?
3 A. Yes. I work in the forestry in Srebrenica.
4 Q. And how long have you been working in the forestry services?
5 A. Since 1998.
6 Q. Can you tell us what your position is?
7 A. I am manager of the financial department.
8 Q. I mentioned in my summary that you were born in Opravdici. Can
9 you tell us where that is, in relation to Bratunac?
10 A. That's 12 kilometres from Bratunac. It's a hamlet in the wider
11 area of Kravica.
12 Q. Do you still reside there, or does your family still reside
14 A. Yes. I returned in 1996, and I live there with my family.
15 Q. I want to ask you a few questions about some of the people that
16 you saw while you were at the Drina Corps IKM in Pribicevac.
17 Now, you testified in the Popovic case that you saw some senior
18 VRS officers there and also some prominent civilians, such
19 Miroslav Deronjic. Other than the officers whom you previously testified
20 about, do you have any present recollection of any other civilian
21 officials or ranking VRS officers that you saw or were aware of that came
22 to the Drina Corps IKM while you were there?
23 A. Except the ones that I mentioned in my previous testimony, I can
24 also mention the representatives of the SDS of the Srebrenica
25 municipality. They came from Skelani. They were Dane Katanic and
1 Mr. Cvetinovic. They offered some sort of help such as food, drinks,
2 refreshments. It was simply to supplement what we had at the command.
3 Q. You mentioned that they were representatives of the SDS of
4 Srebrenica municipality. Was that their position at the time that they
5 came to see you or was that a position that they occupied previously?
6 A. They were in -- on that position in 1991, 1992. I'm not sure
7 whether they were in the same position at the time. I think that they
8 were members of SDS. Now that they were some official representatives of
9 SDS or not, I'm not sure.
10 Q. Did you see Ljubisa Simic, the president of the Bratunac Assembly
11 at any point, during your stay at the IKM?
12 A. I'm not sure. I cannot say that he didn't come when everybody
13 else came, but I'm not sure that I saw him.
14 Q. All right. Now, you mentioned in your testimony that you did see
15 General Mladic. Do you recall that?
16 A. Yes. A few times.
17 Q. And did you see any other members of the Main Staff while you
18 were in Pribicevac?
19 A. I already mentioned General Gvero, Mr. Popovic, and Mr. Beara.
20 You have to bear in mind that I was a civilian there in brigade so I
21 didn't know the names of many of the officers. I mentioned all those
22 that I knew.
23 Q. Did you hear of someone by the name of Colonel Jankovic, while
24 you were there in Pribicevac?
25 A. No. No, I don't know who that is.
1 Q. You mentioned that you saw Lieutenant-Colonel Popovic, the
2 assistant commander for security of the Drina Corps. Did you see any
3 other high-ranking members of the Drina Corps Command in Pribicevac?
4 A. Except Major Trisic who was my superior, during a short period
5 there was a Commander Blagojevic. I didn't see any other officers from
6 the Drina Corps. And there was Major Jevdjevic as well.
7 Q. Well, you did see Colonel Krstic, did you?
8 A. He was there all the time.
9 Q. Did you see Colonel Acimovic at any point in Pribicevac while you
10 were there?
11 A. No. No, I knew him, so I would have known if he had come there.
12 Q. And did you see Lieutenant-Colonel Kosoric, Svetozar Kosoric,
13 the assistant commander for intelligence of the corps, while you were
15 A. No. I don't know him.
16 Q. At the brigade level, did you see -- you mentioned you saw
17 Colonel Blagojevic; is that right?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Do you remember when that was?
20 A. Maybe on the 6th or the 7th of July. He came one day, appeared
21 there, and afterwards, I did not see him.
22 Q. Did he appear there alone or did he appear there with other
23 officers or other personnel from the military?
24 A. He was alone with the man from the communications centre. He
25 came with the people from the 3rd Battalion, because the 3rd Battalion
1 also had their command there. And where he went after that, I don't
3 Q. Did you see Momir Nikolic at any point while you were in
4 Pribicevac, the assistant commander for security at the brigade level?
5 A. I didn't see him, but I cannot say that he wasn't there. I had
6 many duties of my own and I couldn't really follow everything. I
7 wouldn't exclude the possibility that he was there.
8 Q. All right. Let me ask you these few questions. You testified in
9 the Popovic case that while you were there, at least on the 9th of July,
10 that there were no combat operations; do you recall that?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Is that your present recollection? Is that what you remember
13 now, as well?
14 A. Yes, yes.
15 Q. I want to show you a document. It's 65 ter 28, 00028.
16 MR. VANDERPUYE: Ah, 00228. Thank you.
17 We'll need to go to page 3 in the B/C/S, please.
18 Q. And what I want to direct your attention, Mr. Momcilovic, is item
19 number 2. You can see here this document is from the command of the
20 1st Bratunac Light Infantry Brigade. It's dated 9th of July, 1995, and
21 it is entitled: "Daily combat report."
22 And under number 2, it reads is that:
23 "Our forces also carried out combat activities against the
25 And, first of all, do you know what the reference to Turks means
1 in this context?
2 A. I assume the Muslims.
3 Q. It reads:
4 "The commander of the 1st Bratunac Light Infantry Brigade is
5 still at the IKM."
6 That commander would be Colonel Blagojevic, wouldn't it?
7 A. Yes. But he wasn't there, for sure. In which part of the zone
8 he was, I don't know, but he definitely wasn't at the IKM.
9 Q. Okay. But you agree that that's what this document says.
10 A. That's what it says. It mentions the infantry battalion, but
11 that's the zone towards Bratunac and not towards Pribicevac. That's
12 where the combat activities were.
13 Q. All right. So it says that there were combat activities that
14 were carried out, that the commander of the 1st Bratunac Light Infantry
15 Brigade is at the IKM in the area of the 3rd Battalion; right?
16 A. As I said, it may have been in the area of the 3rd Battalion, but
17 it certainly wasn't at the forward command post.
18 Q. Okay. So you are familiar with the combat activities that this
19 document refers to that occurred on the 9th of July?
20 A. From the direction of Bratunac. Can you look at item 5, this boy
21 who died there. It was from the direction of Bratunac. And what I said
22 that they were no activities from the direction of the forward command
23 post, where I was.
24 Q. Okay. I just wanted to clarify that. Because I think your
25 testimony referred to -- that there were no combat operations essentially
1 at all during this period of time, but I appreciate your clarification.
2 You mean that there was no combat activities in the area where you were;
3 is that right?
4 A. Yes, yes.
5 Q. Thank you for that.
6 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'd like to move this particular document into
8 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It will be received.
9 THE REGISTRAR: 65 ter document 228 shall be assigned
10 Exhibit P1812. Thank you.
11 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'd like to show you another document. This is
13 Q. This is a document from the Drina Corps IKM. You can see the
14 title: "IKM Drinskog Kopusa [phoen]," and in quotes "Pribicevac." It
15 is also dated 9 July 1995. This one I think you can see is type signed
16 in the name of General Krstic. Also I direct your attention to item
17 number 2 in this document. And it reads that:
18 "On 9 July 1995, our units carried out a fierce attack along the
19 axes of Zeleni Jadar-Srebrenica." It says:
20 "Pribojevici village, Podravanje village and Kvarac-Srebrenica
21 and reached the Divljakinja, Olovine," and it's a trig point of
22 Zivoko Brdo.
23 Do you see that?
24 A. I can see it. But that's what I was telling you about. They
25 finished with the separation of the Zepa enclave. The places is
1 mentioned here denote the border between Zepa and Srebrenica.
2 Q. And that would be to the south; is that right?
3 A. Podravanje, yes, it is up is there, southwards toward Zepa and
5 Q. And Pribicevac is located --
6 A. Pribicevac is not there.
7 Q. How far is Pribicevac from the locations that are indicated in
8 this -- in this -- number 2 element of this document?
9 A. Divljakinja is close by. Podravanje is more than 20 kilometres
11 Q. How close by?
12 A. A few kilometres, 2 or 3 kilometres, not more than that.
13 Q. And once again, this references to the combat that occurred on
14 the 9th of July; right?
15 A. Yes. But I said that when General Gvero came that was around
16 noon, so when they came, there were no combat activities. I'm not saying
17 that there were no activities the whole day, but when Major Trisic came,
18 there were no combat activities in that area.
19 Q. Thank you for again clarifying that and making it even more
21 So your prior testimony refers not just to those specific
22 locations where you were in terms of combat activities but also in terms
23 of the specific time that you saw General Gvero, Major Trisic, and the
24 president of the Executive Board of Bratunac; right?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. All right.
2 MR. VANDERPUYE: Mr. President, I'd also like to tender this --
3 oh, that's right, it's all right -- sorry.
4 Bear with me for one moment. I just have a couple of other
5 questions and we will be done.
6 Q. You mentioned that in your testimony that you left the IKM on the
7 11th of July, 1995; is that right?
8 A. In the evening, in the late evening hours. The quartermaster
9 security packed up what food was left offer and then we left. But I
10 stayed in the sector of Pribicevac; that is, members of the 3rd Battalion
11 stayed in the sector of Pribicevac.
12 Q. Do you know whether or not there were members of the
13 communications battalion or there were communications officers that
14 remained in Pribicevac after you left?
15 A. Communications officers packed up on their own schedule, and I
16 don't know when they left. They were part of the battalion, and they
17 were a separate team. I really don't know when they left because I had
18 my own obligations.
19 Q. When you returned to the brigade command on the 16th of July -
20 correct me if I'm wrong - did you learn anything about what had
21 transpired in your absence? That is, with respect to the removal of the
22 population, Muslim population from Srebrenica or with respect to the
23 detention of Muslim men in and around Bratunac during -- during your --
24 during that period of time?
25 A. I heard that there was an evacuation from Potocari to Kladanj. I
1 really don't know how many people or what exactly happened, but I know
2 that it took place in that time-period.
3 Q. Did you hear anything about the detention of prisoners in the
4 Bratunac town?
5 A. Not in Bratunac because there was nothing like that in Bratunac.
6 They could have been captured outside of Bratunac. People were evacuated
7 from there. Now, whether people were locked up, I really don't know.
8 There were never any classical-type prisons in Bratunac.
9 Q. Did you hear anything about prisoners being held in the schools
10 in Bratunac either from Momir Nikolic or from members of the military
11 police, the brigade military police? Did you hear anything about that
12 when you returned on 16th of July?
13 A. I think in one school, I think it was called Vuk Karadzic at the
14 time. I heard that some people were detained there. How many, I don't
15 know. I just heard that they were detained in some school. But I don't
16 know how many or -- or who exactly.
17 Q. All right. Well, Mr. Momcilovic, that concludes my direct
19 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much, Mr. Vanderpuye.
21 Mr. Momcilovic, now it's the turn of Mr. Tolimir. He will
22 cross-examine you.
23 Mr. Tolimir.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Peace onto this house
25 once again. I greet the witness today, and I hope that this trial will
1 end with God's will and not as I wish.
2 Cross-examination by Mr. Tolimir:
3 Q. [Interpretation] Thank you for coming here, Witness. And I'd
4 like to ask you, since we speak the same language, you pause and when you
5 see the letters stop on the screen, to -- to reply to the question that I
6 put to you.
7 Now we will start to the questions that were put to you just
8 before my cross-examination and they were put to you by Mr. Vanderpuye.
9 Mr. Vanderpuye asked you, on page 14, line 3, who remained in Pribicevac
10 when you left and whether communications officers were there.
11 Do you remember that question? Thank you.
12 A. I said that members of the 3rd Battalion remained, and I don't
13 know when exactly the communications team left from the command post,
14 together with Major Jevdjevic. General Krstic had already left the area.
15 Q. Thank you. My question is: Did you remove all quartermasters'
16 equipment and all the equipment that the brigade had at the IKM after
17 you'd left? Thank you.
18 A. No, we only took a part of the surplus, but a part of the
19 equipment remained. Not everything was taken away.
20 Q. Thank you. Did you leave only what the battalion needed, the
21 battalion which was in the area?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Please tell me, if you remember, when approximately that was?
24 Was it in the evening, was it in the morning? What time was it?
25 A. It was on the 11th. It might have been 10.00 or 11.00 in the
2 Q. Thank you. During the examination-in-chief, on page 10, line 24,
3 you talked about the locations where Colonel Blagojevic was. He was
4 Lieutenant-Colonel and later Colonel. The Prosecutor asked you whether
5 he was there, and you said that you didn't see him after the 5th or the
7 My question is the following: Is it possible that the command of
8 the Bratunac Brigade formed an IKM at a different location -- at a
9 different location from the IKM of the Drina Corps, since you didn't see
11 A. That's possible. They might have been together with the
12 3rd Battalion in the sector, because that whole sector was in their zone
13 of responsibility, but there wasn't a separate IKM.
14 Q. Thank you. On page 7, Mr. Vanderpuye asked you whether you saw
15 members of the SDS who came to the IKM and brought the humanitarian aid.
16 You said that you did see them and then he asked you whether they were
17 members of the SDS at the time or whether they had been before and you
18 said that as far as you knew they were members of the SDS.
19 Now my question is the following: Did the SDS stop working after
20 the fall of Srebrenica or did they move to a different location?
21 A. They didn't stop working. The Srebrenica SDS is functioning
23 Q. Thank you. Mr. Vanderpuye asked you on several occasions who you
24 saw at the forward command post in Pribicevac. You said that you saw
25 several officers, and you mentioned General Gvero, and Colonels Popovic
1 and Beara of the higher-ranking officers; is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. My question is: Do you remember anyone else who was present
4 there apart from those that you mentioned?
5 A. I already said that General Zivanovic and General Mladic also
7 Q. Thank you. Does that mean that from members of the Main Staff
8 you saw General Mladic, Colonel Beara, General Gvero and from the
9 Drina Corps you saw Zivanovic, Popovic and Krstic; is that correct?
10 A. I didn't see anyone else. I saw Major Trisic from the
11 Bratunac Brigade. He was my superior.
12 Q. Thank you. Did you see me, by any chance, at the IKM?
13 A. I never met you. I never saw you in my life.
14 Q. Thank you. In the examination-in-chief, the Prosecutor showed
15 you a document which was a company of the report from the command of the
16 1st Bratunac Light Infantry Brigade, from the 9th of July. And he read
17 out item 2 that said that our forces are also engaged in format [as
18 interpreted]; do you remember that?
19 A. I said that there might have been operations but from other
20 directions, in Bratunac towards Milici but not from Pribicevac.
21 Q. Thank you. Item 1 that we saw where it says that the enemy was
22 engaged in combat against our forces along the entire line, was this the
23 reason why what it says our forces were engaged in combat, was that the
24 reason it must have been?
25 A. He might have said that. I wasn't able to see anything from
1 where I was.
2 Q. Thank you. In your statement, you said that you were born in
3 Opravdici and that in 1992, until the 7th of January, your family lived
4 in Kravica; is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. You also said in your statement that in front of your house in
7 Kravica where your father was, you found his head which had been cut off
8 and you saw houses which had been destroyed, including his?
9 A. That's correct. And there's a record of that by Mr. Stankovic.
10 He described the body that we found.
11 Q. Thank you. Since you mentioned this, could you tell us what kind
12 of an attack happened on the 7th of January on Kravica? And how far
13 Kravica was from the front end of the line which was being defended by
14 the brigade and from the front end of the Muslim forces?
15 A. Well, the whole village is 4 kilometres long, so it's a small
16 area. There might have been 4- to 500 people in the zone of defence.
17 And they were mainly locals and there was some policemen. The attack
18 started early in the morning on the 7th, and by the afternoon the village
19 had been torched. Thirty-eight people were killed and 30 or more people
20 were wounded and everything was destroyed.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, you were referring to a statement of
22 the witness. Is that the statement given to the OTP on the 2nd of April,
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. I'm
25 referring to the statement that he gave to the Defence in the Blagojevic
1 case. He gave a statement to the Defence in the Blagojevic case, and I
2 will give you the number. It's 1D581.
3 JUDGE FLUEGGE: In your list of potential exhibits, it is listed
4 under item 1, but the description is OTP witness statement.
5 Perhaps we can have it on the screen. That's the best way to
6 clarify that.
7 Mr. Gajic.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. Could we
9 please have D74, that is, 1D223, on the screen, please, page 2 and
10 paragraph 4.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: No, this seems to be a mistake. D74 is a
12 chronical. We are discussing about a statement.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we look at 1D581. That's the
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It's on the screen now.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Could we please turn to
17 page 2, please, in e-court. Thank you.
18 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Momcilovic, do you recall having given this
19 statement? Is this your statement?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
23 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Mr. Momcilovic, please look at line 9 from the top, where it
1 "Christmas of 9 January. Christmas of 1992 when the Muslims
2 attacked my village."
3 Did you say that in your statement?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And then you said:
6 "I found him dead in the same year when the village was
7 liberated. He was lying dead in front of the house and his head had been
8 cut off and thrown next to a fence nearby," and so on.
9 A. That's correct.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this is the statement
11 I was referring to when I put the questions to the witness and I would
12 like to tender it into evidence.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: But, first of all, I would like to clarify
15 You were putting to the witness Christmas of 9th of January,
16 1992. I only see a reference to the Orthodox Christmas Day of
17 7th January, 1993.
18 Could you please clarify that?
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I probably made a
20 mistake in saying 1992. The witness said in his statement the 7th of
21 January, 1993. But we will let the witness clarify so that we can see
22 that I wasn't adding anything and neither did I wish to add anything.
23 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Please, could you describe to the Trial Chamber when the Muslim
25 attack occurred on Kravica, on which occasion your father was killed?
1 A. The 7th of January, 1993, and then the war actions began in May.
2 Q. Thank you. Can you please tell us how many houses in the village
3 were destroyed, how many were captured, how many were killed of the
4 inhabitants for the transcript?
5 A. It was all completely destroyed, all the houses, the barns. Only
6 two persons were captured, an elderly man in his 60s and a woman older
7 than that. Later they were exchanged. An army soldier was captured. He
8 was killed in Srebrenica and he was found after Srebrenica was liberated.
9 Some 38 people were killed and that was the number of those killed at
10 that Christmas attack.
11 Q. Can you please tell us whether a member of the Army of
12 Republika Srpska was captured in Kravica and then was taken to Srebrenica
13 where he was later killed?
14 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the answer.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Sir, could you please repeat the answer because
16 there was an overlap.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] His name was Popovic Kostadin, and
18 he was a member of the VRS. He was captured on the 7th and he was killed
19 in Srebrenica, actually, he succumbed after a beating.
20 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Can you please tell the Trial Chamber if the citizens or the army
22 that was in Kravica were, at that time, carrying out an attack on
23 Srebrenica and how did this attack come about?
24 A. The inhabitants of the village of Kravica were in their
25 territory, they were in their village in their own homes. They were not
1 straying outside of their own village. They were not encroaching on any
2 segment of the line. No inhabitant was outside of the village. They
3 were not attacking. They were defending themselves.
4 The village of Kravica has a population of about 2.000 and then
5 it's surrounded by Muslim villages around Konjevic Polje where there's
6 about 7.000 Muslims and there are other villages around Srebrenica with
7 some 7- or 8.000 Muslims, so it is completely surrounded by the Muslim
9 Q. Thank you. Can you please tell us if the Muslims had come from
10 the territory that was under the control of the Muslims in the Srebrenica
11 sector and these villages that you mentioned a little bit earlier?
12 A. They came from Glogova, Srebrenica, and Konjevic Polje. They
13 came from those three sides. Only the direction of the Drina was a part
14 which was inhabited by Serbs and that's how the army managed to pull out.
15 Q. Thank you. In your statement, you said that there was a burial
16 of all of those killed who were killed which was attended by
17 General Morillon. Can you please tell us a little bit about that?
18 A. Well, the funeral could not have been carried out in Kravica
19 because of the combat. The funeral was held in Bratunac and still a
20 number of victims from Kravica are still buried in the Bratunac cemetery.
21 Q. Thank you. You described all of this in the first paragraph of
22 your statement, and this is why I referred to it. Thank you.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You were tendering this document. It will be
24 received as an exhibit.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this document shall be assigned
1 Exhibit D160. Thank you.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
4 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Can you tell us, please, if there were any attacks on other
6 Serbian villages in the environs of Srebrenica in 1992, 1993, and 1994
7 that you are aware of?
8 A. In 1993, when Kravica was torched there was also Skelani, which
9 was then also attacked on the 16th and the 17th. So except for Bratunac,
10 all the villages had been attacked and destroyed by mid-March except for
12 Q. Thank you. So who destroyed them and what year was this in? You
13 said that all the Serbian villages had been destroyed?
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It is very difficult for the interpreters again
15 because you don't pause between question and answer. You have to pause,
16 otherwise we will not have a sufficient and valuable transcript.
17 Please carry on.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
19 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Could you please repeat for the transcript who attacked the other
21 villages after the 7th of January 1993? Which villages were destroyed in
22 1993 by the Muslims? Thank you.
23 A. Under the command of their commander, Naser Oric, from the centre
24 which was located in Srebrenica, villages along the Drina were burned;
25 these were Fakovici, Bjelovac, Skelani. That was in one day. All the
1 surrounding smaller villages in the area of Bratunac, Srebrenica, the
2 entire Kravica in 1993. Then there was some other villages from May to
3 August that were destroyed.
4 So by mid-May, Bratunac was the only village that had not fallen
5 in that area where we were. And perhaps a couple of other villages along
6 the Drina.
7 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not catch the names of the
9 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Thank you. Since this happened in the first half of 1993 --
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Are you able to tell us whether after that, Srebrenica was
13 declared a safe area, protected area and was there a truce after that and
14 if there was, when?
15 A. When Kravica was liberated on the 17th of March, 1993, there were
16 some operations carried out towards Skelani, so I think sometime in late
17 March or early April a line was established. In April, I think. And
18 that area was declared a protected zone and then all the actions stopped.
19 Q. Can you please tell us if you remember, since you were mobilised
20 as it was mentioned in the summary in 1994, were there any attacks from
21 the safe area by the Muslims on surrounding Serbian villages in the area
22 after 1993, after the demilitarised area was declared?
23 A. The provocations never stopped. People kept getting killed,
24 passages were mined. There were actions of that nature, yes.
25 Q. Thank you. Do you remember whether any Serbian village was
1 torched and destroyed and its population killed around Srebrenica?
2 A. All the villages were burned, Podravanje, Bijezane [phoen],
3 Jezero, Kusici, all of the villages in the Srebrenica area.
4 Q. Thank you. Do you remember if there was an attack on the village
5 of Visnica in 1994 from the Srebrenica safe area, and what do you
6 remember of that?
7 A. That is in the direction of Milici. I think that some five or
8 six people were killed. There was an incursion by a group. I heard
9 something about that.
10 Q. And do you remember whether these frequent attacks from the
11 protected area in the direction of the Republika Srpska at the civilian
12 population in the Army of Republika Srpska was one of the reasons that
13 offensive or assault actions were initiated again against the Muslim
14 forces in Srebrenica?
15 A. Well, I don't really know much about that. But I assume that
16 that was as you say, yes.
17 Q. Thank you. During the examination-in-chief, the Prosecutor asked
18 you about some events that occurred during the time that the separation
19 between Srebrenica and Zepa occurred. Do you recall that?
20 A. Yes, I do.
21 Q. Are you able to tell us why the Army of Republika Srpska carried
22 out operations in order to separate Zepa and Srebrenica? Thank you.
23 A. There was a lot of circulation by the soldiers. Both Zepa and
24 Srebrenica were protected areas, so there was a lot of co-operation
25 between those two areas and the soldiers went from one area to another so
1 this needed to be cut off. I mean, I'm not really that knowledgeable
2 about what happened there, but I think the reasons for that are
4 Q. Thank you. In 1994, when you were mobilised again, were you in
5 the Bratunac Brigade the entire time, until you became the logistics
6 deputy -- assistant commander in the Drina Corps?
7 A. Yes. I was there for two months, and then I joined the brigade
8 in December 1994.
9 Q. Thank you. And did you spend the whole war in the
10 Bratunac Brigade? Thank you.
11 A. From September 1994. In 1992 and 1993, I was on work duty. I
12 was acting director of a company.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Momcilovic, it would be very helpful for
14 everybody, especially for the interpreters, if you would wait a moment
15 when starting your answer for a question, because there's always an
16 overlap and it is very difficult for the interpreters and the
17 court recorder.
18 Just pause a bit before you start your answer. Thank you very
20 Mr. Tolimir.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President, for that
23 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Mr. Momcilovic, can you please tell us what the difference is
25 between work duty and mobilisation? Could you please tell us what the
1 difference is, what are the duties when you're on work duty and what
2 happens once you're mobilised? Thank you.
3 A. Those who are on work duties were assigned to their own jobs in
4 different companies. I was in the Brickworks and we were trying to
5 achieve some kind of profit. The company worked on its normal
6 activities. When you were mobilised then you joined a work unit. Work
7 duty was carried out in civilian clothing. Once you were mobilised you
8 wore the same clothing that the members of the brigade wore.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could the e-court now show P590.
11 This is this telegram from the forward command post sent by Blagojevic.
12 This is something that the Prosecutor read out during the
14 This is on page 12:8, when the Prosecutor tendered or submitted
15 this document.
16 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm sorry, we're looking at the
18 handwritten document before this one. Can the e-court help? We would
19 like to look at 65 ter 228 now, please. Thank you.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: This is now P1812.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. Thank
22 you, e-court. Could you now please show page 2? Thank you.
23 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
24 Q. What we're looking at on page 2 is the last paragraph,
25 paragraph marked 7, of this report. We can see 7 now.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: No, we can't see it.
2 THE REGISTRAR: That is e-court page number 4 in B/C/S.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In the English, could we look at
4 the following page, please.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: This is in e-court page 4, as the Registrar told
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 MR. TOLIMIR: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Paragraph 7 reads, I quote:
10 "Two UNHCR vehicles with 15 UNPROFOR soldiers who fled to our
11 territory were brought into the brigade command and have been put up in
12 the Fontana hotel in Bratunac."
13 This is signed by Commander Colonel Vidoje Blagojevic. This was
14 something that was in his daily combat report of the 9th of July, 1995.
15 Can you please tell us if you know anything about this and if you
16 heard or saw anything about it?
17 A. I know that a number of members that were stationed above
18 Srebrenica came to the Pribicevac area at the beginning of the action and
19 that they were sent towards Bratunac. I don't know how many of them
20 there were, however.
21 Q. Thank you. And were you in the Bratunac Brigade informed about
22 them arriving in Bratunac, as the commander stated, or were they sent by
23 their superiors?
24 A. I really don't know. This is something that the commander wrote.
25 I don't know much about this.
1 Q. Thank you. It says here, "two UNHCR vehicles ...," but actually
2 it should have said "UNPROFOR vehicles"?
3 A. Yes, that is correct, UNPROFOR.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would now like to tender this
5 document if it has not been tendered already. Thank you very much. My
6 legal assistant tells me that has already been tendered. Thank you.
7 Thank you.
8 Mr. President, I have no further questions for this witness.
9 Mr. Momcilovic, I would like to thank you. Thank you for coming
10 to the Tribunal to testify. Thank you for the answers you gave. I would
11 like to wish you a safe trip home. May God bless you and may you come
12 home safely. This is all I have for you.
13 Mr. President, thank you very much.
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much, Mr. Tolimir.
15 Mr. Vanderpuye do you have re-examination.
16 MR. VANDERPUYE: I have just a few questions, Mr. President, if I
18 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Please.
19 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you.
20 Re-examination by Mr. Vanderpuye:
21 Q. Mr. Momcilovic, you were asked page 18, I believe it's lines 3
22 through 4, by General Tolimir, about having seen certain members of the
23 VRS Main Staff. And, in particular, he asked you whether you had --
24 whether you had seen him.
25 Do you remember being asked that?
1 A. I do, yes.
2 Q. Now, are you aware whether or not General Tolimir had contact
3 with the command at the IKM in Pribicevac during the period of time that
4 you were there, other than you're having -- other than being physically
5 present there?
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
8 The witness said that he hadn't seen me and the Prosecutor said
9 that I was physically present. I would like the Prosecutor to put a
10 clear question so that he doesn't mislead or confuse the witness. Thank
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, this is not correct. Mr. Vanderpuye
13 stated he was referring exactly to what you said and the answer of the
14 witness, and then he asked for communication with you, if he has any
15 knowledge about communication -- other than with people -- other than
16 present at that IKM.
17 Please continue, Mr. Vanderpuye.
18 MR. VANDERPUYE:
19 Q. Did you understand the question, Mr. Momcilovic, or should I try
20 and restate it?
21 A. I don't know who had contacts with whom. I was a logistics guy
22 taking care of things, if we needed to provide clothing or food or
23 footwear. I don't know what was going on there, and I never heard or met
24 General Tolimir, so I really don't know who maintained contacts. I
25 didn't know anything about that. I didn't need to because my job was
1 logistics. This is what I was doing.
2 Q. Let me show you D41, please.
3 MR. VANDERPUYE: We have the English up in e-court now.
4 Q. It's a bit small in the B/C/S. If you could just focus in on the
5 top for a moment. You can see here this is a document from the
6 Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska. It's dated 9 July 1995 and
7 it reads:
8 "Very urgent. To: The president of Republika Srpska for
9 information. Drina Corps IKM."
10 And to Generals Gvero and Krstic personally.
11 Do you remember what day it was that you said General Gvero was
12 at the IKM in Pribicevac?
13 A. I think that it was on the 9th of July, so I don't have any to
14 change in relation to that.
15 Q. That's the day that you saw him; right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. You didn't see General Tolimir though on that day, or on any
18 other day, that you were at the IKM; is that right?
19 A. No, I didn't even know the man. Even if I had seen him, I
20 wouldn't have known who he was. So I really don't know. I don't
22 Q. You can see in this particular communication it is type signed by
23 Generals -- Major-General Zdravko Tolimir; right? Right at the bottom.
24 A. Yes, I can see that.
25 Q. And in particular, it refers to the conduct of combat operations
1 around Srebrenica. These are the combat operations to which you refer
2 previously and clarified your prior testimony; right?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. In the first paragraph of this document, it reads:
5 "The president of Republika Srpska has been informed of
6 successful combat operations around Srebrenica by units of the
7 Drina Corps and that they have achieved results which enable them to
8 occupy the very town of Srebrenica."
9 You see that; right?
10 A. I see it.
11 Q. And the third paragraph of this document, it reads:
12 "That the president of the Republika Srpska ordered that in the
13 follow-up combat operations, full protection be ensured to UNPROFOR
14 members and the Muslim civilian population and that they be guaranteed
15 safety in the event of their cross-over to the territory of
16 Republika Srpska."
17 Yes? You see that?
18 A. Yes, I can see it.
19 Q. Again, this document is directed to the location where you
20 actually were on the 9th of July, 1995, and where you saw General Gvero
21 in Pribicevac; correct?
22 A. That's what it says here.
23 Q. So the fact that you didn't see General Tolimir doesn't mean that
24 General Tolimir was not in contact with members of the Main Staff at
25 Pribicevac that you did see; right?
1 A. Well, I never said anything like that. I didn't deny it. I
2 really don't know.
3 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would like the Prosecutor to ask
5 this witness specific questions. So if I sent a cable, was does that
6 mean? Was I in contact with them or did I merely send cables there? Why
7 would I send cables if I was in contact? I think that the question
8 should be more specific. Thank you.
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, there can't be a misunderstanding.
10 The witness told us several times that you were not present and he didn't
11 see you. To send a letter or telegram is a kind of contact, from a
13 Please continue, Mr. Vanderpuye.
14 MR. VANDERPUYE:
15 Q. Let me show you D85.
16 And while that's loading, I'll ask you the following: You were
17 asked questions by General Tolimir concerning the basis or the reasons
18 for the separations of the enclaves, that is, Zepa and Srebrenica, to
19 which you responded that the reasons were well-known, in part. And that,
20 I believe, was at page 26, lines 8 through 9. You've now seen a document
21 which I just showed you - it was D41 - which called for the occupation of
22 the town itself. Having been there during those -- during that period of
23 time, is there any -- do you have any understanding as to why the
24 separation of the enclaves required the occupation of the town?
25 A. Well, it most probably -- if you separate the enclaves, then the
1 corridor is also smaller. I'm not a soldier. I wouldn't really know
2 exactly. It's easier to clean out one enclave than two enclaves at a
3 time. Otherwise, I can't tell you anything else. I'm not a tactician
4 and not a soldier. They were much closer to Srebrenica. After the
5 enclaves were separated then Srebrenica was almost at the tip of their
7 Q. You mentioned that it's easier to clean out one place at a time.
8 Do you have any reason, do you understand -- do you have any
9 understanding as to why the separation of the enclaves would have
10 required cleaning out of the population of either?
11 A. I'm not talking about smaller zone of responsibility. I'm
12 talking about the smaller zone in which combat activities have to be
13 carried out. It's easier to control a smaller zone. After all, you
14 know, I'm just a quartermaster, and I know more about money than about
16 Q. Do you know why the separation of the enclave would have required
17 removing the civilian population from Srebrenica or from Zepa?
18 A. I don't know what the goal was, who ordered what. I know nothing
19 about that. I know that what happened, what happened.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
22 These kind of questions expect this witness to speculate about
23 topics that he knows nothing about, about topics that he saw nothing
24 about. I don't think that's proper. Thank you.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I think there's some merit in what Mr. Tolimir
2 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President. I was merely
3 following up on the witness's response to his questions saying that the
4 reasons for the separation were well-known; and, therefore, if they're
5 well-known, I think the witness should have an understanding of what the
6 goals are and that's what I'm asking him about. But I think --
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Then I think you should ask him about his
8 knowledge at that point in time --
9 MR. VANDERPUYE: Okay.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: -- and not what his opinion about a tactical
11 situation is.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE:
13 Q. When you said the reasons were well-known for the separations,
14 were you talking about your knowledge at the time or were you talking
15 about your knowledge now or subsequently gained?
16 A. I know now. Then, I didn't know. The enclaves were to be
17 separated, the zone of activities was supposed to be smaller. That's
18 what I know now. I didn't know it then. You have to bear in mind that I
19 belonged to the quartermasters. I'm a warehouseman, I'm not a soldier.
20 Q. I think I had D41 up on the screen. If we could just take a look
21 at that.
22 This is another document. You can see it is headed:
23 "Drina Corps command intelligence and security department."
24 If you go down to the bottom you can see that this one is type
25 signed Major Zdravko -- Major-General Zdravko Tolimir.
1 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'm sorry, we have D85 on the screen, not D41 at
2 this time.
3 Q. In the header, you can see that this is very urgent and it is
4 directed to the Drina Corps forward command post in Pribicevac, and to
5 General Krstic personally. You can also see here that it says:
6 "VRS Main Staff, intelligence and security ..." [Overlapping
7 speakers] ...
8 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I think now we have a problem. We wanted to have
9 D85 on the screen.
10 MR. VANDERPUYE: [Overlapping speakers] ... change it.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Now we have -- I think we have now D41 on the
12 screen because you mentioned that earlier but then you corrected
14 MR. VANDERPUYE: Okay.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: We need again --
16 MR. VANDERPUYE: D85.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: -- D85.
18 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you very much, Mr. President.
19 Q. I think I was reading the caption of it, it says:
20 "VRS Main Staff of intelligence and security affairs sector,
21 General Tolimir personally for information."
22 Do you see that?
23 A. I can see it.
24 Q. And you will see that this involves communication between
25 General Nicolai and General Tolimir. You can see the reference to
1 General Tolimir just about at the bottom of the second paragraph.
2 Do you see that there?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. In the middle of the second of paragraph, it says:
5 "I request an explanation of such behaviour and demand that your
6 forces withdraw 4 kilometres to the south," after indicating that the
7 units were 1 kilometre away from the town of Srebrenica, which was
8 considered a safe area?
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
11 This is now going beyond the bounds of my cross-examination. I
12 never spoke to this witness about the contacts between General Nicolai
13 and Main Staff and IKM. I think that the Prosecutor should concentrate
14 on the topics from my cross-examination and he should also give us the
15 reference for this line of questioning.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye.
17 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
18 The reference for this line of questioning goes back to
19 General Tolimir's examination of the witness with respect to his contact
20 with -- with the command at Pribicevac. The suggestion is that if he's
21 not there he doesn't know what's going on there. And this is directly
22 responsive to that. This is a document bearing his name concerning
23 information provided to him and concerns the contacts that are had with
24 the command of the Drina Corps at Pribicevac where this witness is and
25 information relayed to and from there, going to General Tolimir, despite
1 his physical absence from that location. That's the basis of the -- of
2 the questions that I'm putting to the witness concerning this document,
3 in particular.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, this document and the previous
5 document, they are all ready in evidence.
6 MR. VANDERPUYE: That's correct, Mr. President.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The witness told you that he doesn't know
8 anything about communication and what was happening there with
9 communication. He only was able to testify about the people present at
10 the IKM.
11 How can he comment on this telegram, the content of the telegram?
12 MR. VANDERPUYE: There are two things that I think are relevant
13 to that issue. One is that this document is directed to a person at the
14 IKM that the witness says -- can confirm was at the IKM that he saw. So
15 it goes, first of all, to the reason that the document was sent there,
16 and the purpose of sending the document there; that is, to achieve
17 contact or communication with General Krstic who the witness puts at the
18 IKM on that date.
19 It also is relevant because that direct contact with
20 General Krstic is one that is obviously communicated to General Tolimir
21 as well, as can you see his name on the document, indicating so. And so
22 it shows that there is communication that's going - that's bidirectional
23 communication - between the IKM and members of the Main Staff, both seen
24 and unseen by this witness. That's the only reason why I put it to the
25 witness, because the suggestion -- that was the suggestion that was made
1 by General Tolimir in his question whether or not who he had seen -- the
2 witness had seen from the Main Staff and in particular whether he had
3 seen General Tolimir at the Main Staff suggests implicitly that
4 General Tolimir is not in the loop as to what is going on there.
5 If he is willing concede that, he is willing to state for the
6 record that he was fully aware what was being carried out and what was
7 going on at the IKM in Pribicevac on the 9th of July, 1995, as indicated
8 in these documents, then there's no problem. And I do think the witness
9 is an appropriate person to put this to since he was there.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I would like to ask the witness.
11 Mr. Momcilovic, can you tell us, do you know anything about
12 telegrams and other written or electronic communication between the IKM
13 and other relevant people who were not present at that time at the IKM?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know nothing about the
15 communications. That was the job of the communications officer. I
16 really know nothing about it.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Have you ever seen one of these telegrams on the
18 screen in front of you before today?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I haven't.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, you wanted to comment.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
22 You said exactly what I wanted to say. I didn't suggest to this
23 witness to say anything. I simply asked him whether he saw me. And why
24 did I ask him that? Because the Prosecutor asked him who it was that he
25 saw there, and that's all that I wanted to find out.
1 Thank you.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You understood that and there was no need to
3 repeat that.
4 Mr. Vanderpuye, you should consider the position of this witness
5 and if this witness is the right one to testify about the communication
6 between the IKM and other people outside of that place.
7 MR. VANDERPUYE: I think that we've probably pretty much revolved
8 the issue. And, that being said, I have no further questions for this
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much.
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Sir, this concludes your examination here in this
13 trial. Thank you very much that you were able to come to The Hague again
14 and to help us with establishing the facts. Thank you very much again.
15 And you are free now to return to your normal activities.
16 We must have our first break now, and we will resume at 11.00.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 [The witness withdrew]
19 --- Recess taken at 10.31 a.m.
20 --- On resuming at 11.03 a.m.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Good morning, Mr. Thayer. I don't know to whom I
22 should address the following question. This morning Mr. Tolimir was
23 raising the problem of scheduling of witnesses this week and a different
24 order of the witnesses. I think we can imagine that there were some
25 problems in scheduling but would like to receive an explanation on that,
1 Mr. Thayer or Mr. McCloskey, I don't know.
2 MR. THAYER: Good morning, Mr. President. Good morning to
3 Your Honours. Good morning to the Defence and everyone. Your Honour,
4 I'll address Your Honours' question, as the happy assignment of the
5 witness schedule generally falls to myself, so I'm the prime suspect
6 pretty much all the time.
7 The -- I think fundamentally, Mr. President, there was a failure
8 of communication possibly on the Defence side. I don't know why
9 General Tolimir feels like the schedule was somehow fundamentally
10 changed, because it wasn't. What happened was Mr. Brunborg's, as
11 Trial Chamber knows, testimony extended into this week unexpectedly. I
12 think we all thought that he would have been completed by last week. We
13 had scheduled for this week and had placed the Defence on notice about
14 it, the next witness as well as -- or I'm sorry, the witness who just
15 testified and the following witness. Both of whom are under -- or were
16 under schedule constraints. The witness who just complete his testimony
17 needed to start Monday for his own work-related reasons. The witness who
18 is about to testify needs to testify immediately following this witness
19 for similar reasons, and he has a support person with him, and so there
20 are various budgetary and victim witness reasons why he needs to go next.
21 The schedule has always been -- this week would be the witness who just
22 testified, when I say "always," certainly not since our February filing
23 is the Trial Chamber probably aware, our February filing got changed, but
24 I have been in e-mail and telephonic contact with the Defence and on some
25 of those communications, we have -- or I have copied in the
1 Court Officers but primarily only when a final decision has been made and
2 agreed upon or were communicated to the Defence. I think, as I've said
3 before, we try not to get the Trial Chamber too involved in the sausage
4 making with respect to the schedule and only when there is something
5 substantive to communicate do we copy in the Trial Chamber. We would
6 like to have started with Mr. Brunborg -- or completed his
7 cross-examination today, that would have been our strong preference.
8 However, given the witnesses that we have had scheduled for this week,
9 not just the witness who just completed, not the witness who is scheduled
10 to follow him, but the two following witnesses both whom required some
11 considerable consultation and -- and persuasion, frankly, to come back --
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer, I think -- I would like to stop you
14 MR. THAYER: Okay.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: We have received the reasons and I can state that
16 we received at the -- the Chamber, like the Defence, on the 6th of
17 February, an e-mail indicating that today we will hear two witnesses,
18 Mr. Momcilovic, and the protected witness who is coming now. And,
19 therefore, it can't be a surprise only the question of when Mr. Brunborg
20 will be available. I think this is explained --
21 MR. THAYER: And just, Mr. President, so the Trial Chamber knows,
22 I think we have very good communications with Mr. Gajic. I spoke with
23 him twice on Friday to confirm the schedule. It -- again, I think is
24 really just a matter of when we have a self-represented accused whom we
25 can't call up and speak -- since I don't speak the language and he is
1 obviously in a detention unit, I think that complicates things a little
2 bit and I think that's what happened here. So it is unfortunate. We
3 wish we could have continued with Mr. Brunborg, but that's just a fact of
4 life we're dealing with.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: That's fine. In my view, there is no need to go
6 on with this discussion. I would, on behalf of the whole Chamber,
7 appreciate if we could receive the list of witnesses scheduled for the
8 following week in time. That means now Thursday of the previous week.
9 MR. THAYER: Mr. President, again, this is a little bit of
10 sausage making, but we were prepared to do that. Unfortunately, we
11 needed the estimate from the Defence for Mr. Brunborg before we could do
12 that. And I tried to communicate that to the Trial Chamber as well.
13 We're well aware of the changed regime for the notification. We will do
14 our best to stick to that.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much. And we will appreciate to
16 receive an estimation from the Defence, the time needed for
17 cross-examination for each and every witness of this week.
18 The next witness should be brought in, please. And we go into
19 closed session to enable him to enter the courtroom without detecting his
21 [Closed session]
9 [Open session]
10 THE REGISTRAR: We're back in open session, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much.
12 Good morning, sir.
13 THE WITNESS: [Microphone not activated]
14 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the witness.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Welcome to the Tribunal. Please wait a moment.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Now would you please read aloud the affirmation
18 on the card which is shown to you now.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
20 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
21 WITNESS: PW-013
22 [Witness answered through interpreter]
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much. Please sit down and make
24 yourself comfortable.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You know there are still protective measures in
2 place for you, especially the use of a pseudonym instead of your real
4 First Mr. Thayer for the Prosecution will examine you.
5 Mr. Thayer.
6 MR. THAYER: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
8 Examination by Mr. Thayer:
9 Q. And good morning to you, Witness.
10 A. Good morning.
11 Q. I'd like to call up an exhibit that should not be broadcast,
12 please. If we could have 65 ter 7175 on e-court.
13 And, Witness, I'd just ask you to, without reading out loud
14 what's on the computer in front of you, if you could just confirm that
15 your name appears on the computer screen underneath the pseudonym,
16 PW-013. Can you just confirm yes or no, whether you see your name on the
17 computer screen in front of you.
18 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It will come up soon. It's not there yet.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can see it. I can see my name on
20 the screen.
21 MR. THAYER:
22 Q. Okay. Thank you, Witness.
23 MR. THAYER: Mr. President, the Prosecution would tender
24 65 ter 7175.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It will be received, under seal.
1 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours 65 ter document 7175 shall be
2 assigned Exhibit P1813, admitted under seal. Thank you.
3 MR. THAYER: Mr. President, if we may go into private session for
4 some biographical background, please.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Private.
6 [Private session]
11 Page 9831 redacted. Private session.
15 [Open session]
16 THE REGISTRAR: We're in open session, Your Honours.
17 MR. THAYER:
18 Q. Now, did you leave Bratunac at some point, sir, after the war
20 A. I did. I left Bratunac on the 8th of April; that's when I left
21 my house in Bratunac. I didn't leave. I practically fled. And I went
22 to my parents' village, together with my family. I went, two brothers
23 and their families. We intended to return very quickly because I figured
24 there was never going to be a war. I thought everything would be
25 resolved quickly by the army and the police. I thought there's no way
1 that there can be a war. I went to my parents' house for the weekend.
2 And I never returned, until 2005. That was the first time, I think, that
3 I visited my house again.
4 Q. Now, you told us that you practically fled Bratunac. Why did you
5 practically flee Bratunac in April of 1992, sir?
6 A. No announcement was made. War wasn't declared but it was like a
7 state of war. At the time, the JNA passed through town in trucks. They
8 went to Serbian villages. An army commander came. He looted houses, and
9 he killed people. Just a moment.
10 His wife's name is Ceca, she's a folk singer.
11 Q. Okay. Now what specifically happened? And I want to turn your
12 attention to something you mentioned in your prior testimony here, and
13 for the Defence this is at transcript pages 6850 and 6889 in the Popovic
14 trial. You mentioned something happening in April of 1992 at the
15 Bratunac football stadium. Can you tell us the Trial Chamber just
16 briefly what happened there in April of 1992?
17 A. There was an announcement that all citizens should come to the
18 football stadium in Bratunac in order to sign their loyalty to the
19 Serbian police and the Serbian authorities that were formed at the time.
20 Everybody was to go to the football stadium where families were
21 separated. Women and children were separated from the men. And they
22 were transported to Kladanj and Tuzla. Some people were taken to the
23 school, to the Vuk Karadzic school, where I completed my primary
24 education. They had established a camp there. They tortured people
25 there and they killed people there, but I don't know how many people. I
1 know some people who were lucky enough to survive and they were
2 exchanged. Some of them are still alive and some not.
3 Thinking that something like that might happen, I left. I went
4 to my parents' village. I thought that this wouldn't last very long. I
5 thought the army would put an end to it. However, that was the final
6 time I left my house and never returned until 2005. I left because I was
7 afraid. They were check-points already established, and they were
8 Chetnik check-points. There was such check-points in Zuti Most, then in
9 Ljubovija, in Kravica, two young men had been killed at that check-point.
10 It was during the night.
11 Q. Okay. Now you mentioned that some people were taken to the
12 Vuk Karadzic school. First of all, were those Muslim or Serb people that
13 were taken to the Vuk Karadzic school?
14 A. The JNA was there, and they had some insignias. One group called
15 itself White Eagles and Arkan was there, I just remembered. Arkan was in
16 Bratunac. He was the main man as far as looting and torture went. At
17 the beginning, I called them hooligans who assisted him. They had
18 weapons. They had been drinking and they formed these check-points on
19 their own.
20 Q. Let me just interrupt you again, sir. I just want you to listen
21 as carefully as you can to my question.
22 The people who you said were brought to the Vuk Karadzic school
23 in April 1992, were those Muslim people or were those Serb people?
24 That's my first question.
25 A. The Serbs took the Muslims and set up a camp for Muslims in my
1 old school, the Vuk Karadzic school.
2 Q. Okay. And the Muslims who were held at the Vuk Karadzic school
3 in April of 1992, were they women, children, and men; or were they
4 predominantly one gender?
5 A. I don't know about women. But I do know that they were mainly
6 able-bodied men. They knew about them based on their records. One them
7 was a "hodza" and he was brutally beaten in front of a group of people in
8 the gym of the Vuk Karadzic school.
9 Q. Okay. Now just another follow-up question: You referred to
10 Arkan and I simply want to the ask you, you mentioned the name before or
11 you couldn't remember the name, but you recalled that this individual was
12 married to a singer. Is Arkan the person you were trying to remember
13 before, just so we have a clear record, sir?
14 A. Yes, Arkan. I remembered now.
15 Q. Okay. Now, I want to stay in open session as much as possible,
16 so if you can answer the following question without providing specific
17 names, we can stay in open session as much as possible.
18 Can you just briefly tell the Trial Chamber when you were living
19 in Bratunac before the war, how did people of differ ethnicities get
20 along with each other? And if can you provide any examples briefly, I
21 think that might be helpful for the Trial Chamber.
22 A. It was a good life. Most certainly a good life. I remember it
23 that way today, and I wish we could have it back. The people had respect
24 for each other. The Muslims, Serbs, Catholics. I didn't even know the
25 difference between a Catholic and an Orthodox man. I had no idea.
1 Whenever there were holidays, neighbours met and congratulated each
2 other. I was present during some religious celebrations. The mosque was
3 very nearby, and it was a good life. That's what I thought about it at
4 that time, and that's how I remember it today. I feel very nostalgic
5 about those days. We had respect for each other. We knew that we were
6 different in terms of religion but we still considered ourselves to be
7 one people. Most certainly.
8 Q. Now, yesterday during our proofing session, you told me about two
9 Serb friends or schoolmates and two incidents that stuck out in your
10 mind, one that involved a band playing some music and the other one that
11 involved donating blood. Without giving the actual names, so we can stay
12 as much as possible in open session, can you tell the Trial Chamber
13 briefly what those incidents were, those events were?
14 A. I can. In 1995, I was in Srebrenica for the first time after the
15 war. I visited Srebrenica then --
16 Q. Actually, before we go too much farther, sir, you said -- I have
17 on my transcript, "In 1995 ..."
18 Is that the year, sir, or was it a different year?
19 A. Not 1995, I'm sorry, it was in 2005 that I invested my house and
20 I was at the memorial centre in Potocari. It's on the 11th of July of
21 each year and then on the 12th of July there is a fascist Chetnik
22 celebration right the next day and I was surprised to see a schoolmate of
23 mine. We went to school together for four years. I can't say that I'm
24 sorry for helping his mother on one occasion because she was ill and she
25 lost a lot of blood, so I volunteered from the school to donate some
1 blood without any compensation or anything. We Muslims say, I did it
2 with pleasure. And I went to donate blood. And I was the only one to do
3 so. There were a lot of his relatives. His uncles, his nephews, none of
4 them could donate any blood whether because they were ill or for some
5 reason, and he wouldn't donate blood, and my schoolmate could confirm
6 this if he was honest. But I do remember seeing him in a fascist uniform
7 in 2005.
8 Q. And you referred to yesterday another friend who happened to be
9 Serb who said something when a band was playing. Could you just tell the
10 Trial Chamber briefly about that occasion.
11 A. That's a lot to remember. I can't tell you anything about that
12 now. I'm just not able to.
13 Q. Okay. I understand sometimes these -- these things are
15 If it makes you feel a little bit more comfortable, we can go
16 into private session for a brief moment.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Private.
18 [Private session]
11 Page 9838 redacted. Private session.
1 [Open session]
2 THE REGISTRAR: We're back in open session, Your Honours.
3 MR. THAYER:
4 Q. Witness, you told us that --
5 A. Thank you.
6 Q. -- you and your family went to your father's village in April of
7 1992. At some point, did you leave your father's village and go to
9 A. In view of the situation and that before that, I think the
10 blockade was on, and there was a ban on importing flour and food articles
11 just before the war began in Bosnia. When I came to the village,
12 thinking that I would have somewhere to buy some food in order to
13 survive, I went to the shop. The shop was already empty. I asked the
14 merchant what I could buy. I found some Neapolitan cookies. That's all.
15 That was the last thing. There was also some rubber footwear that I
16 could by, and I had what I brought with me to my parents' house. The
17 house was empty. My parents were no longer alive. The village was not
18 really thriving. Lots of people worked in companies. People didn't live
19 from cultivating the land. There was a crisis. It was difficult to get
20 food, so I thought that perhaps I would have a greater chance of buying
21 something in Srebrenica, of buying food for my family for myself, and
22 that's how I decided, I think it was in June 1992, to go to Srebrenica.
23 And that's how we ended up there.
24 Q. Okay. And when you moved to Srebrenica, how many children did
25 you have, and what were their ages?
1 A. My oldest daughter was five. She was born in 1987. Then I had a
2 daughter who was born in 1990; she was two at the time. My wife was
3 pregnant. And on the 12th of July, she gave birth to my baby.
4 Q. So when you were living in Srebrenica, sir, were you a member of
5 the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
6 A. I don't know if it was an army. I don't know how you could
7 define it. But these were organised village guards with side-arms,
8 personal weapons. Actually, you had to go, because it was better to
9 create some kind of barrier to prevent the Chetniks, the evil guys from
10 getting in and to prevent them from committing massacres that they
11 committed in other municipalities, in Bratunac and so on. That's why I
12 left my village from -- my village, Bratunac.
13 Q. And were you injured at some point; and, if so, just when and
14 how? Just briefly, sir.
15 A. Yes. There was a village guard set up in the village of Likari.
16 That is where I was wounded. I don't know the date. There was a million
17 shells on a very small area. When a conductor was killed -- he was from
18 the Bratunac municipality. I actually knew him well. He was an older
19 man -- actually, he was a middle-aged man at that time, and he was killed
21 I was seriously wounded in my left thigh bone with a shrapnel
22 from a shell, so then I could no longer be in the village guard because I
23 was physically impeded.
24 Q. And when did that happen, sir, approximately?
25 A. I'm sorry?
1 Q. When were you wounded by the shrapnel, sir? Just a month is
3 A. This was in 1992. I don't know the precise date. In any case,
4 it was before my son was born.
5 Q. Okay. I want to turn your attention to January of 1993.
6 The Trial Chamber, as recently as this morning, heard testimony
7 about the Bosniak attack on the village of Kravica on Serb Orthodox new
8 year in January of 1993. You recall that that happened; is that correct?
9 A. I know that it happened. I didn't participate, since I was
10 wounded. The cause was that there was a major shortage of food at the
11 time. There were no convoys. There was no humanitarian aid. It was
12 probably an invasion by bare-handed people in search of food.
13 Q. Okay. What I'm interested in, sir, is following that attack on
14 the village of Kravica, and I -- I don't need any detail. I just want
15 you to confirm whether you know, yes or no.
16 Following that Bosnian Muslim attack on Kravica, did the VRS
17 undertake any military activity in the area, starting in January of 1993?
18 A. I don't know the date, but there was mass shelling. And then I
19 think Konjevic Polje was taken at the time, and that there was a lot of
20 refugees who came to Srebrenica from Konjevic Polje. I don't know the
21 exact date. I know that there was shelling, there were attacks, and so
22 on and so forth.
23 Q. And you said your wife gave birth to a baby in the summer of
24 1992. Was it a boy or a girl, sir?
25 A. Yes, a boy.
1 Q. And can you tell the Trial Chamber what happened to your son.
2 A. The shelling was quite strong on that day. It was intense. And
3 there was a house that was struck by a shell. One of the shells hit the
4 school so that all the windows were shattered. There was a loud
5 detonation. So assume that my child was harmed by the detonation.
6 Before that, he wasn't ill. He died that evening. He got a temperature
7 and when I woke up, I could see that he was foaming at the mouth.
8 I'm finding this difficult.
9 Q. Sir, if you need a break, I think we can take one. Just let us
11 A. It's all right. I would need a break.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Sir, you would like to have a break now? It
13 would not be a problem at all.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I would like to, please.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: In that case, we should have break now, and we
16 will resume, I think, 20 minutes last 12.00. And then we will continue
17 and see if we can finish with you in the third session.
18 --- Recess taken at 11.51 a.m.
19 --- On resuming at 12.21 p.m.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Sir, I hope very much that during the break
21 somebody from the unit, VWS, could help you to overcome this emotional
23 And Mr. Thayer is now continuing his examination-in-chief. But
24 please let us know when there is another need for a break.
25 Mr. Thayer.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 MR. THAYER: Thank you, Mr. President.
3 Q. Good afternoon, Witness, again.
4 Can you tell the Trial Chamber what month it was in 1993 when you
5 lost your son?
6 A. I think it was January. Around the 21st or the 20th of January.
7 I'm not quite sure about the date.
8 Q. Okay.
9 A. I made a tombstone for him out of oak wood. And I engraved the
10 date with fire. But when I returned in 2005, I wasn't able to find the
11 place anymore. It was around the 20th of January.
12 The shelling was going on, and I assume that it was the
13 detonation that caused it, that he died from the detonation.
14 Q. And was anyone else killed or wounded in that shelling?
15 A. A woman, who was in that house and who had been injured before.
16 I'm not quite sure whether she died. Just a moment.
17 There were other cases at the time. For instance, up there, a
18 doctor was killed. I'm not sure whether it was the same day. His name
19 is Nijaz. That doctor's name. But whether it was the same day, I'm not
21 Q. Now the Trial Chamber has heard prior evidence about the arrival
22 of the UNHCR convoys in early 1993 and the chaos that occurred when some
23 people tried to leave on the empty UNHCR trucks. Can you tell the
24 Trial Chamber what you observed, what you saw, regarding those trucks in
25 Srebrenica in 1993.
1 A. First of all, the life was impossible. It was very insecure.
2 The shellings were frequent. I think that, at the time, Chetniks had
3 taken Cerska and Konjevic Polje and all those people came to Srebrenica,
4 so there was no food and no accommodation. So life there was definitely
5 impossible. And then the UNPROFOR came. I don't know whether it was the
6 first time or the second time when they delivered humanitarian aid, we
7 were told that they had received approval to transport elderly women and
8 children towards Tuzla, towards the free territory. I wanted to put my
9 wife and children into those trucks, but I wasn't able to come close to
10 the trucks. That's how people were there, trying to get into the trucks.
11 Some people suffocated.
12 I saw, for instance, a woman who was climbing onto the truck and
13 the crowd was such that her child died. She didn't do it herself. But
14 when she climbed onto the truck and when she saw that her child had
15 suffocated, she lost consciousness. The crowd was such that people were
16 jostling, and she was holding the child in front of her.
17 So I don't know how many people they transported. I think that
18 they managed to take a group of people out. I don't know what was the
19 number of the trucks. And then they stopped with that. They stopped the
21 Yes, they stopped the evacuation and that was it.
22 Q. Now, I want to turn your attention to another event about which
23 the Trial Chamber has heard some previous testimony, which was a shelling
24 attack on a playground near a school in Srebrenica town.
25 Can you please tell the Trial Chamber what you know about that
2 A. As far as I can remember, I was in the apartment. It must have
3 been around noon; I'm not sure about the date. And the fierce shelling
4 was going on. It was time to eat, but we had no water, and I told my
5 older daughter who was five at the time to go to a nearby spring and
6 bring a bottle of water.
7 In the meantime, the shelling had started and then I couldn't see
8 her. I went out in panic because I was afraid for her life. So I ran up
9 to the spring, and I didn't find her there. On the way there, I saw an
10 old woman. I thought that she was sitting down, but then when I looked
11 at her, I saw that she fell, so I ran up there. And there was another
12 child that I saw, and I overturned that child as well, and I saw that it
13 was not my child. I was in panic and you returned.
15 my child. And then she called out and said, Papa, I'm here. So
16 suddenly, I was relieved.
17 In the meantime, there was a guy with a small agriculture machine
18 with a small trailer behind and we were collected dead and wounded
19 people. So I spent some time in the hospital, looking at the dead people
20 being brought in, and the wounded as well. One of the doctors saw me. I
21 used to be treated in that same hospital earlier when I had been wounded,
23 (redacted) how to put a bandage on a wound. That's when I decided that I
24 was going to help with the bandaging.
25 Q. Sir, let me just stop you right there.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Judge Nyambe has a question for the witness.
2 JUDGE NYAMBE: Thank you. Actually, I have witness [sic] for
3 Mr. Thayer. At page 60 line 15 to 19, you are reported as having said:
4 "I want to your attention to another event about which the
5 Trial Chamber has heard some previous testimony which was a shelling
6 attack on a playground near the school."
7 Can you please tell the Trial Chamber what -- okay.
8 Can you put it in context, for which period this attack was?
9 MR. THAYER: Certainly, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE NYAMBE: Thank you.
11 MR. THAYER: And the first thing I can point the Trial Chamber to
12 is the prior transcript at pages 1118 to 1125, that's the earlier
13 testimony. I intend to show the witness some UN reports -- or UN report
14 and some other documents which I think will help date, provide a
15 particular date and location for this shelling and I intend to elicit
16 some more detail from the witness about the context of the shelling.
17 So I think we're hopefully going to answer all your questions.
18 The reason I'm standing, Mr. President, is to ask that we have a
19 redaction now in two places. There was one earlier reference that I
20 thought we could live with, and there's another one that we need to, I
21 think, take care of.
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Can you perhaps draw my attention to the first
23 one. We saw the second one already.
24 MR. THAYER: Yes, the first one ...
25 [Prosecution counsel confer]
1 MR. THAYER: Okay. The -- it's at page 61, line 12, where the
2 witness mentions a name. I presume Your Honour is referring to the
3 earlier reference to his daughter's name.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: We saw that on page 61. That will be redacted.
5 And the other one?
6 MR. THAYER: The other one is the earlier one.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Can you give us the reference?
8 [Prosecution counsel confer]
9 MR. THAYER: And that's at page 61, line 6, Mr. President, 7.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Yes, okay. We will do that.
11 Please carry on.
12 MR. THAYER:
13 Q. Witness, you were just telling us that the doctor had asked you
14 to help treat some of these wounded people. Let me follow up a little
16 Can you tell the Trial Chamber what the -- or who was the target
17 of this shelling? What was struck? And just tell the Trial Chamber what
18 happened from what you saw, and then we'll get into some more detail.
19 A. I don't know what the target was. But I know that there was
20 playground. The school was full of refugees. So there were some
21 children in the playground and also people who used to live around. They
22 played football and other sports. That's where they would spend the
23 time, in the playground. And they used to have a tournament in football,
24 every day.
25 That playground was the place where people would spend their time
1 when they had free time. When there would be no shelling.
2 Q. And, on that day, sir, when the playground was shelled, what was
3 going on there?
4 A. There were children and other people there. Srebrenica, at the
5 time, was overpopulated. There were many people there. Even if they
6 didn't pick out a particular target when shelling, even if it was a
7 random hit, you would kill at least ten people, kill and maim. Because
8 the place was full of people. This is especially true for the playground
9 where children used to play with the ball.
10 I think that, on that day, 100 people were killed and 70 were
11 wounded. That's what they told me in the hospital.
12 Q. And can you just tell the Trial Chamber a little bit more about
13 what you did after the doctor asked to you help treat some of the
15 A. Yes, I started to help. At that moment, they brought in a man
16 from Potocari, or more precisely, from the Kapetanovic Cuprija. I knew
17 him, his name was Jahija, Jahija Smajlovic. His nickname was Pasalic.
18 He was all massacred by the shrapnels. His relatives brought him on a
19 horse-cart. And they told us that it was chaos down there because of the
20 shelling. I'd almost finished dressing up his wounds when he died.
21 After him, I took a boy, 13 years old. His lower leg was
22 dangling. He had lost lot of blood. And there was a superficial wound.
23 But his lower leg was seriously wounded.
24 Then there was an elderly woman there who was waiting for her
25 turn to get her wounds dressed, but by that time, she died.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Sir, may I ask you when did all that happen?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't remember the date.
3 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Approximately, perhaps then the month and the
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It must have been at the time when
6 Morillon was there, when they were supposed to set up an enclave. There
7 was some talk about him staying there, or not staying there. What was
8 the date?
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Do you remember the year?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] April. It was April.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Can you recall the year?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, the year was 1993. It was
13 April 1993. Yes, definitely April. Because before that, I was trying --
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: [Previous translation continues] ...
15 MR. THAYER:
16 Q. Sir, if I could just interrupt you for a brief moment.
17 You mentioned on a prior occasion that there had been musicians
18 playing in the area of the playground. Can you tell the Trial Chamber a
19 little bit more whether you remember anything about what was happening
20 that day on the playground? Do you remember telling us back in 2007 that
21 there were -- that there were musicians playing in some kind of
23 A. It wasn't a celebration. It was a tournament in football for
24 children. Not only children. There were adults as well, civilians.
25 Whoever wanted to play football. People would form a team and then they
1 had a tournament. So usually people would congregate there, boys, girls,
2 you know, that's how they used to spend their time. Because there was
3 nothing else to do and they had no other obligations. So you were right
4 to mention that.
5 There was a corner of the playground that was enclosed with a
6 wire, and a shell fell there, and it didn't hurt any of the people
7 playing. But after that, there was blood and pieces of flesh and human
8 body on the wire. Afterwards, people used to talk about it. Some people
9 said that this shell landed right next to them but didn't kill them. So
10 later on people used to tell jokes about the fact that they survived.
11 Q. Let's take a look at a document.
12 MR. THAYER: It's 65 ter 6167.
13 Q. It will be up on your computer screen in a moment.
14 What we have before us is an UNPROFOR report. Do you see it in
15 your own language, sir.
16 A. Yes, I can see it.
17 Q. Okay. And it's dated the 12th of April, 1993. The subject is
18 the situation in Srebrenica.
19 And if we go to the second page in English, and the second page
20 in B/C/S, we see it attaches a letter from the UNPROFOR Force
21 Commander Wahlgren to President Karadzic. And the subject is the
22 situation in Srebrenica.
23 We can see the first paragraph where he writes:
24 "Despite the promise of the pursuit of a political solution to
25 the problem in Srebrenica, which I was given by General Mladic, I have
1 received the following report from my people in Srebrenica at 1830 hours
2 local time today ..."
3 And we saw that the date was the 12th of April, 1993, on the
4 cover page.
5 And just take a moment and read the following paragraphs to
6 yourself, please.
7 A. This second statement must be true, but ...
8 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It should be enlarged a bit.
9 MR. THAYER:
10 Q. Okay. Before we get -- before we go any further, I want to ask
11 you first, have you had a chance to look at the document?
12 A. Yes, I managed to read as far as C.
13 Q. Okay. Now, based on what you've read in this report, can you
14 tell the Trial Chamber whether what is being described in here is the
15 shelling attack you just testified about, or do you think this is a
16 different attack?
17 A. It's probably this one. They're talking about 68 wounded, 35
18 killed. In the hospital, they said that it was around 70 wounded and
19 around 100 killed. That's what I'm reading here under A. Yes, yes,
20 that's it.
21 I assumed that this is it, although there was a slightly larger
22 number of those killed and wounded.
23 Q. And the reference here in paragraph B to the schoolhouse used as
24 a refugee centre, what -- what is that referring to, based on your
25 experience there?
1 A. That's true. That was the refugee accommodation. The elementary
2 school and the playground was right next to the elementary school and the
3 high school in Srebrenica. The name of the school was Mihajlo Bilakovic.
4 Q. And if we look to paragraph C, there is a reference to a second
5 round of shelling which included both incoming and outgoing fire,
6 resulting in additional casualties. Sir, do you recall there being a
7 second round of shelling that day?
8 A. Yes, there was a second round, but I think that it was towards
9 the evening. I am not familiar with the casualties from this second
10 series, and I don't know whether they were killed people. But, yes,
11 there was shelling.
12 Q. And do you recall whether there was any fire that was opened up
13 by the Bosniak side during that second round of shelling?
14 A. I don't know about that.
15 Q. And, sir, to your knowledge, the first round of shelling that
16 struck that playground and killed those children and old women and men
17 you talked about, to your knowledge, had that been provoked in any way?
18 Had there been any fire from the Bosniak side before the shelling of that
19 playground that day?
20 A. I don't know. I don't believe so. I'm not sure. I don't know.
21 I don't think that it had been provoked. You have to bear in mind that
22 UNPROFOR came there. They tried to pass through and they tried to
23 prevent them from getting into Srebrenica. And that was the kind of
24 pressure that they exerted, the shelling.
25 Q. Okay.
1 A. The enclave should have been set up at the time. I think that
2 that was their goal. There was no provocation. They wanted to kill and
3 drive people out. The population of Srebrenica, the Muslim population.
4 Q. Okay.
5 MR. THAYER: Mr. President, the Prosecution would tender
6 65 ter 6167.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It will be received.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 6167 shall be
9 assigned Exhibit P1814. Thank you.
10 MR. THAYER: Now I'd like to take a look at another document.
11 This is 3573; 65 ter 3573.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Is there no English translation?
13 MR. THAYER: There should be an English translation uploaded. I
14 checked it last night.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: There is none. The Registry tells us there is no
16 English translation uploaded in e-court.
17 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
18 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I was told that there is a translation, but --
19 and it is marked with a number but there's no link so that it can't be
20 displayed on the screen. There must be a technical problem with the way
21 it was uploaded.
22 MR. THAYER: Okay. Well, we can work, Mr. President, I think,
23 with just the original version that's on the screen. It's just a small
24 portion that we'll be working with in any event. So I think we can
1 Q. Sir, what we have in front of us is, I think we'll all agree, an
2 intelligence report, dated 14th April 1993. If we look at the top three
3 lines where it says, "glavni stab vojska republike srpske." That is the
4 Main Staff of the VRS.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And the administration for intelligence and security affairs. Is
7 that correct, sir? Is that what it says there?
8 A. Yes.
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Now we have the translation on the screen.
10 MR. THAYER: Great.
11 Q. So, again, we see this intelligence report dated the
12 14th of April, 1993. This is sent out two days after the shelling attack
13 that we just saw the report about from the Force Commander to
14 Dr. Karadzic, President Karadzic, and that you have testified about.
15 MR. THAYER: If we could go to the last page in both versions,
16 please. And, actually, I should say the second-to-last page in B/C/S.
17 And the second-to-the-last page in the English. Forgive me. It's
18 the ... we can see that it was sent out by General Tolimir. What I'd
19 like to do is go back one more page.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The document said Colonel Zdravko Tolimir.
21 MR. THAYER: Yes. Then-Colonel Tolimir. Exactly right,
22 Mr. President, then-Colonel Tolimir.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. I would
25 like to welcome the witness and I wish his testimony may end in
1 accordance to God's will and not my will.
2 Could the Prosecutor now explain why we could see on the monitor
3 a text that was crossed out in black felt-tip pen. Can he please tell us
4 what it is, because I didn't see later what it was. And it appeared a
5 little bit earlier.
6 Thank you.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer.
8 MR. THAYER: Well, we can go through each page of the document.
9 I didn't author the document. I wasn't a recipient of the document.
10 This is the condition in which this document was provided. I can
11 certainly tell the Trial Chamber just based on what it looks like to me
12 is somebody crossed out a certain portion that maybe they thought was not
13 relevant to their particular area. But beyond that, I can only speculate
14 what that particular marking is on the document.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It is only necessary to explain the OTP received
16 it in that way, in this -- under these conditions we see it on the
18 MR. THAYER: That's --
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It was not crossed out by the Prosecution.
20 MR. THAYER: That's correct, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Please continue.
22 MR. THAYER: Now, if we could go to page 2 in the B/C/S, please,
23 and page 3 in the English.
24 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I asked to look on
1 the screen again what we could see earlier on the screen that was crossed
2 out so that we could see what it was. I can't see it now.
3 Thank you.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, you should let Mr. Thayer conduct
5 the examination-in-chief and we can come to that later. It is
6 Mr. Thayer's obligation to put the documents to the witness. And in your
7 cross-examination you may deal with it, or Mr. Thayer will call this page
8 up on the screen again.
9 Please continue Mr. Thayer.
10 MR. THAYER: Thank you, Mr. President.
11 Q. Now we are looking at page 2 of the original --
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] But then I have an objection. Did
14 the witness draft this document? Did he see it? If this document is
15 being introduced through him, I was asking why the document was crossed
16 out. But I'm not being allowed to look at it because I could see it on
17 the screen before. And I can't ask the witness because he didn't write
18 the document.
19 Thank you.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You may ask the witness during your
21 cross-examination, Mr. Tolimir. Now, Mr. Thayer is examining the
22 witness. And you may come back to that -- at a later stage.
23 Mr. Thayer, please continue.
24 MR. THAYER: Thank you, Mr. President.
25 Q. Now, I want to focus your attention, Witness, on a paragraph on
1 page 2 of the original that you're looking at. And, in particular, in
2 your language, it's the paragraph that begins "u funkciji." There's a
3 reference to internationalising the problem, and in English it is the
4 paragraph that begins:
5 "Their propaganda campaign ..."
6 Do you see that paragraph, sir, that refers to --
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. In this paragraph, and if we could move it over to the right just
9 a bit so we catch the -- if it's possible -- I'm sorry, the B/C/S --
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Indeed.
11 MR. THAYER:
12 Q. -- so you can read it.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It is always different on different screens. On
14 our screen, we didn't catch the left side of that page. Now you should
15 enlarge it a bit and then the witness can read it.
16 MR. THAYER:
17 Q. Okay, sir. Now, again, two days after this attack that you
18 testified about, General Tolimir writes in this intelligence report that:
19 "Their propaganda campaign, aimed at internationalising the
20 problem and securing the deployment of UNPROFOR in Srebrenica, churns out
21 allegations of artillery fire, targeting the town and causing numerous
22 casualties among civilians."
23 Now, sir, you were there. Is what you saw allegations as
24 General Tolimir wrote in this report?
25 A. Well, it's true that there was a media propaganda, media
1 propaganda. We improvised electrical motors used bicycles in order to be
2 able to listen to the radio to follow what was going on. There was a
3 proclamation that a corridor would be opened from -- towards Tuzla so
4 that all the civilians could come out from Srebrenica. And I was on that
5 road. I took my wife, my children, and I was on that road when I was
7 Q. Okay. Witness, we're going to get there. We're going to talk
8 about the corridor and the road in a moment. What I want to focus your
9 attention on is this portion of this intelligence report written by
10 then-Colonel Tolimir, two days after this shelling that you saw.
11 In it, he refers to this propaganda campaign, churning out
12 allegations of artillery fire, targeting the town. My question to you
13 is: Is what you saw propaganda?
14 A. There was a media campaign that there was an open --
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I'm very sorry, I didn't know that this was
16 already the end of the question. I wanted to give the floor first to
17 Mr. Tolimir.
18 Mr. Tolimir.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
20 Mr. Thayer, by reading a letter that the witness never saw, is
21 trying to get the witness to provide testimony about that letter. I
22 would like him to ask the witness about something rather than reading the
23 letter and then asking the witness to speak about it. This is then
24 leading the witness.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer.
1 MR. THAYER: Mr. President, we have here a document written by
2 the accused at the time of the events described by this witness,
3 characterising those events in a certain way. It goes directly to the
4 accused's state of mind, his level of being informed, his level of
5 knowledge at the time, and I'm asking this witness whether what's being
6 described here by General Tolimir as allegations of artillery fire
7 targeting the town and causing numerous casualties among civilians are
8 allegations as described by General Tolimir, just allegations, or whether
9 it was fact.
10 And then I'm going to ask him whether, what he saw on the 12th of
11 April, 1993 was propaganda, or whether what he saw was fact.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The last part of the question was absolutely
13 appropriate and you should put this question to the witness.
14 MR. THAYER:
15 Q. Sir, let me just ask it again.
16 What you saw on the 12th of April, 1993, was that an allegation
17 by the Muslim side or was that a fact, what you saw, that shelling on
18 that playground on that day?
19 A. The shelling took place, 100 percent. And this mention of
20 alleged propaganda, it was in the media that there was allegedly a
21 corridor opened. That was their propaganda for people to come out of
22 Srebrenica. The shelling occurred one million per cent. There's one
23 million and one pieces of evidence that the shelling did occur. There
24 are people who were wounded, who are dead, who have disappeared somewhere
25 in forests. There are also live eye-witnesses.
1 MR. THAYER: Your Honour, the Prosecution would tender 3573.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer, I have some doubt if this witness is
3 the right witness to testify about this document, to authenticate this
4 document, to see it in a -- yeah, how should I put it?
5 We're talking about 1993, and you are referring to one
6 paragraph of a lengthy document. There are some doubts. We need more
7 clarification. Or you should tender it with another witness at a later
9 MR. THAYER: That's fine, Mr. President. We will take the latter
10 route and wait for another witness.
11 Q. Sir, let's take a look at one other document. You've mentioned a
12 corridor that you described as Bosnian Serb propaganda.
13 MR. THAYER: Let's look at 65 ter 5876, please.
14 Q. Sir, we have here a telegram from the commander of the
15 Drina Corps, then-Colonel Zivanovic, to the Main Staff's sector for
16 morale religious and legal affairs. I don't think there's any dispute
17 that that was General Gvero at the time. And it is dated the 13th of
18 April, 1993, a day after the shelling that you described.
19 We see here references to the large number of civilians who have
20 found refuge in Srebrenica. A reference to the huge mass of civilians
21 will try for a route in order to save themselves from the encirclement.
22 And I want to focus your attention on the bottom of this proposal from
23 General -- Colonel Zivanovic to General Gvero. He says:
24 "We ask for your engagement in this matter through the following:
25 To engage your bodies in resolution of the problem of the population that
1 wants to leave Srebrenica, and that assistant commander for morale,
2 General Gvero and his bodies should engage themselves with projecting
3 information to the Muslims of Srebrenica on the means of their safe
4 evacuation from the combat zone."
5 Now you talked about a corridor and I think you talked about the
6 Bosnian Serb media. Can you tell the Trial Chamber whether you see any
7 connection between this proposal from General Zivanovic to General Gvero
8 to your experience on the ground during this time? Did anything happen
9 that you can tell the Trial Chamber about that is reflected in this VRS
11 A. Yes, certain things did happen.
12 I personally did feel more secure. People were trying to find a
13 way to get out of that hell, and so listening to the media propaganda,
14 allegedly a corridor was opened on the Zvornik -- on the
15 Srebrenica-Zvornik road towards Tuzla. And I set off with my family to
16 that allegedly open corridor. However, we covered 30 kilometres with my
17 child. She was five years old at that time. She walked that road alone.
18 It was difficult. We came to Konjevic Polje, and in Konjevic Polje, I
19 met people who had already been on the road before me. They said that
20 they had been intercepted. Some of them were wounded. I met my wife's
21 sister who was there with her husband and her child. She came back on
22 the first day. On the fifth day, her husband came with their child.
23 People had started to use that road. However, this was a lie. People
24 were getting harmed. And then I decided to return to Srebrenica again.
25 I decided to go back. I gave up on that particular route.
1 Q. Please tell the Trial Chamber --
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer, I would like to express a certain
3 concern about the use of court time. In the witness summary, the
4 Prosecution provided for the Chamber -- the OTP said that this witness
5 will testify about events in Zepa in July 1995. At that time, it was
6 indicated that the viva voce testimony would last one hour and 15
7 minutes. Now we have heard this witness one hour and 30 minutes. Your
8 indication was to -- that you will need two hours for
9 examination-in-chief. We are still in 1993.
10 I wonder how you will manage to finish the examination-in-chief
11 in the estimated time of two hours.
12 MR. THAYER: I will not be able to in the two hours,
13 Mr. President. We increase the estimate to two hours from the original
14 estimate based on the time that we took in the last trial, during which
15 we also went into these events in 1992 and 1993 which are, we believe,
16 critical so that the Trial Chamber has this historical understanding of
17 these events which are inextricably linked to the events in 1995, as
18 we've argued in our pre-trial brief and as we've argued in the opening
19 statement. 1995 cannot be understood properly without going all the way
20 back to 1992 and, in particular, the --
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer, there may be reasons for that, of
22 course. But your estimation from last week was two hours. And this is
23 the concern of the Chamber. The Prosecution, as well as the Defence,
24 should try to finish the examination in the estimated time. It was your
1 MR. THAYER: That's correct, Mr. President --
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Please carry on your examination.
3 MR. THAYER:
4 Q. Now, sir, can you tell the Trial Chamber how you heard about this
5 corridor and exactly what you heard about the corridor.
6 A. I heard about it on the radio, the Serbian radio. Serbian radio
7 television. There were no other stations that you could hear around. We
8 improvised a radio so that we could listen. It was about the road being
9 open for civilians, those who wanted to leave Srebrenica to go to Tuzla.
10 This was the Srebrenica-Zvornik-Tuzla road.
11 I decided to go there. I covered 30 kilometres on foot, carrying
12 one child on my shoulders, the other child leading them by the hand. My
13 wife was carrying some things. Then we came to Konjevic Polje. My
14 wife's sister was there. She had already been along the corridor and
15 they were prevented. There was an attack. They were driven away. I
16 don't know if anybody was killed. She didn't know that. They were
17 escaping, so she came back the first day.
18 On the fifth day, her husband returned with their child. He was
19 carrying the child. As they were fleeing, they got separated from each
20 other. So on the fifth day he came back. So then I felt that this
21 situation was dangerous. My decision was dangerous to take this
22 allegedly open corridor, so then I decided to return to Srebrenica. And
23 I stayed in Srebrenica until -- or for a while longer at least.
24 Q. Okay. And just one final follow-up question on the corridor.
25 When it was communicated over the Bosnian Serb radio, was there
1 any time-limit that was given for this corridor being open?
2 A. This went on for about a week. Seven to ten days, something like
4 Q. Okay. But the question was: When the corridor was announced
5 over the radio, was there a time-limit given over the radio when the
6 corridor was announced?
7 A. It wasn't specified. But what was said was that it would be for
8 some ten days, that it would be open for about ten days.
9 Q. Okay.
10 MR. THAYER: The Prosecution would tender 65 ter 5876.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer, I think we are in the same situation
12 as with the last document.
13 The witness was not able to tell us anything about the content
14 and especially the authentication of this document. We heard from him a
15 lot about the situation on the grounds but I think -- we have some doubts
16 if this is the right witness to tender this document.
17 MR. THAYER: I understand the Trial Chamber's concerns. And just
18 to the Trial Chamber understands where we're coming from, and this is
19 true when the Defence has tendered documents in similar circumstances,
20 it's our position that if the witness can speak about the events, can
21 have something to say about what may be contained in a document even if
22 the witness didn't have a hand in drafting it, we would still proffer it
23 under those circumstances. I understand the Trial Chamber's consistent
24 rulings in that regard and we'll use this with a difference witness.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Thayer, there is one difference. This
1 document, I haven't read everything, but what you put to the witness was
2 an order how to deal with circumstances in the future but not what was
3 happening on the ground. And this is a difference, I think, to some
4 other instances. We have made our position quite clear.
5 MR. THAYER: Understood, Mr. President.
6 Q. Now, to save a little bit of time, sir, let's move from 1993
7 directly to 1995. And just to lead you a little bit to save some time,
8 is it fair to say that you left Srebrenica sometime in the summer of 1993
9 to return to your father's village?
10 A. Yes, that's correct. Do you need me to tell you why I left?
11 Q. If can you do that very briefly, that would help. If you can
12 just do it in a sentence or so, explain to the Trial Chamber why you left
14 A. First of all, it was a disastrous humanitarian situation. There
15 was no food in Zepa; that is, in our enclave. In Zepa, the supply was
16 better. And, again, the family home was there and there was land where I
17 was able to plant seeds. That's all.
18 Q. Just to clarify, I think the transcript is a little confusing to
19 me, at least. As I read the transcript, you say:
20 "It was a disastrous humanitarian situation. There was no food
21 in Zepa; that is, in our" --
22 A. In Srebrenica.
23 Q. Okay. All right. And in Zepa the food supply was better. Okay;
24 is that correct?
25 A. Certainly, it was better.
1 Q. Now the Trial Chamber has heard a fair amount of testimony about
2 the Ukrainian peacekeepers who were sent to Zepa. And that humanitarian
3 aid began arriving to the Zepa area. Just briefly, yes or no, did you
4 take part in distributing that aid in the Zepa enclave?
5 A. Yes, I did participate in the distribution of humanitarian aid.
6 Before, there was a group that distributed humanitarian aid.
7 They had been chosen by the people there. And there was -- there were a
8 few instances of stealing, so we were appointed to distribute
9 humanitarian aid. I suspect they had a good opinion of us and that's why
10 they chose us.
11 Q. Now, when you returned to the Zepa area from 1993 until, let's
12 say, July of 1995, were you serving in the army during that time?
13 A. No. Actually, yes, just before the fall. When we all had to go
14 to the lines, there was a lot of shelling. The Chetniks attacked from
15 all sides, from up -- from the other side of Zepa, they occupied places,
16 they made incursions into the enclave, they torched villages, et cetera.
17 Q. And we'll get there in a little while, sir.
18 In 1995, did you observe anything happening with respect to the
19 frequency or regularity with respect to the delivery of humanitarian aid
20 to the Zepa enclave?
21 A. Just before the fall of Zepa, perhaps two months before the fall,
22 humanitarian aid came two or three times a month, but I think about two
23 months before the fall of Zepa, the frequency was lower, which had quite
24 an effect on the situation, meaning that a lot of refugees who had come
25 on foot from Srebrenica took some food. That is, I would give them some
1 food. I knew some of these people. They came to see me and I just
2 couldn't refuse giving them at least something. And it was the same with
3 others. There was a lot of solidarity among the people at the time. We
4 tried to share what we had.
5 But, yes, less humanitarian aid was arriving. And, for a while,
6 no aid arrived.
7 Q. Now, did you ever hear reports or even rumours that helicopters
8 had flown weapons, ammunition and other supplies for the Bosniak fighters
9 in the enclaves? And let's say between 1994 and 1995, just to give you
10 some dates. Did you ever hear any reports or rumours to that effect?
11 A. I did. I heard a helicopter had been brought down and that a man
12 survived. That was in Zepa. That's what I heard.
13 Q. Okay.
14 A. One or two men survived.
15 Q. And in 1995, just focussing you on that year, did you hear any
16 reports again or even rumours of raids or sabotage attacks by members of
17 the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina from inside the Zepa and Srebrenica
18 enclaves on Bosnian Serb targets outside the enclaves?
19 A. I didn't. I don't know anything about that. I wasn't engaged in
20 the army during peacetime, during the peace in Zepa and Srebrenica,
21 during the demilitarisation and during the time UNPROFOR was there. I
22 don't know anything about that.
23 Q. Okay. Now you already told the Trial Chamber that, at the time,
24 close to the fall of the Zepa enclave - and this would be in July of
25 1995 - you did act in the defence of the enclave. You said that you
1 hadn't been a soldier when you were in Zepa but then you told the
2 Trial Chamber that when the enclave was about to fall, you did do
4 Can you tell the Trial Chamber what you did?
5 A. I went to the line. I went -- I was at the front in a place
6 called Stublic. There was a duty service non-stop because there were
7 very intense attacks and people were arriving who had survived the fall
8 of Srebrenica but failed to reach the free territory, and they were
9 telling us about their stories, what had happened to them and what they
10 had seen. There was a lot of fear and a lot of panic, that the Chetniks
11 might enter the village and surprise us and kill all of us, the women,
12 the children, and all of us. So we were all at these so-called front
13 lines. Until an announcement was made that civilians were being
14 transported, and when I brought my wife and children there, as did
15 everybody else, because there were rumours that an announcement had
16 arrived for everybody to come to Zepa. All the women, all the children,
17 all the elderly, and that they would be transported by the ICRC to
18 Kladanj. However, that wasn't the ICRC. There's no talk of the ICRC
19 escorting them. They were merely driven there and along the way they
20 were searched, they were threatened, et cetera.
21 Q. Okay. And we'll get there in a little bit, sir.
22 Just to back up for one quick question. When you went to this
23 location in Stublic were you armed?
24 A. I found a rifle there from -- which had been used by the previous
25 guards. In Stublic, there was some weapons near a cliff, so we didn't
1 carry weapons with us. I don't know why. But it was very dangerous for
2 about three days. I didn't dare sleep because it was horrifically
3 dangerous. You could hear the Chetnik army straight underneath us. You
4 could hear them talking nearby, so I was very afraid to fall asleep at
5 night because they might have captured me or killed me. And when I was
6 going back from duty service, I left the rifle there. I would go home
7 for a day or two and then return. It went on like this for about two
8 weeks before the fall.
9 The week before the fall, there was complete chaos. You didn't
10 know what was going on. You didn't know who had what, who was where.
11 And, at the time, villages were torched. When I left my wife, I saw
12 Vratar, Ribioc villages and Borovac on the other side, and I spent the
13 night in the woods. That is, I went home first and then I went out to
14 talk to somebody to see what the situation was like and what we were
15 going to do. It was very dangerous. There were some indescribable
16 situations. You were not able to go anywhere. You were afraid of being
17 captured. The worse thing was that they were torturing people.
18 So then the next day, I ran into a larger group of people in
19 Igrisnjik, and I asked them what was happening. I said, What are we
20 going to do? Where are we going to go? And they said that it was
21 impossible to get anywhere. He said, Where you are, that's where you're
22 stuck. So I went back to Poljanica. I meant with my brothers there and
23 ran into some acquaintances and friends and we thought that it was
24 impossible to get through the Chetnik lines in large groups without being
25 noticed, so we thought we would stay put there for a while until
1 something happened. And we hoped that some help would come from the UN
2 and from NATO, that they would react in some way. However, no reactions
3 came, and I left.
4 We were planning to stay in the Drina canyon. We were planning
5 to stay there in a cave. We took some flour there, some food, and the
6 last time that I walked out from underneath the cliffs, I ran into a
7 schoolmate of mine. We had gone to secondary school together in
8 Srebrenica. I asked him what he was thinking of doing, where he was
9 thinking of going. And he said that he had been with -- met with his
10 nephew and some other cousins and said he was planning to go to Macedonia
11 because some people had managed to reach Macedonia a little bit before.
12 They were all from the enclave. And he told me that he knew the field
13 because he had worked for a company in Belgrade and had spent some time
14 in the field where the hydro electric power plant was built so I believed
15 him to that we could get through. So I asked to join them. He said,
16 Yeah, of course, no problem.
17 So I decided to go with him. I went back to the cave and I told
18 this to my brothers. I said I don't want to advise anything, because I
19 was worried if I was killed or they were killed, I didn't want to be
20 blamed, so I thought it might be better if we split up. So I said
21 good-bye, and I left.
22 I crossed the Drina. I crossed the Drina that afternoon or in
23 the early evening. We lit some fire. We dried off. We changed clothes
24 so we would look like regular people. We went up the hill. And then, as
25 they called themselves, the Yugoslav Army arrived. They said they would
1 vouch for our security. They didn't abuse us. There was about a dozen
2 of them. However, when we got to the group where there were 150 people,
3 again, there was no abuse, until an additional group from the
4 Yugoslav Army arrived. Their leader was called Crni and he started
5 mistreating people. We were lined up in a column and they intended to
6 take us somewhere. I didn't know where.
7 We walked through a field, and I was trying to see where we were.
8 I was thinking, and at one point I heard the command stop and rifles were
9 aimed at us, and I could hear -- I heard guns being caulked and I thought
10 that they wanted to shoot us. However, in such situations you're
11 thinking so fast and so many things go through your head that at one
12 point I thought, I should just run from the column because the Drina
13 canyon was close by and the forest was also close by. However --
14 Q. Let me just interrupt you for a minute, if I could. We're across
15 the river in Serbia; is that correct?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I want to take you back a little bit before you crossed the river
18 and ask you some follow-up questions before we talk about -- a little bit
19 about what happened after you were captured on the Serbian side.
20 I note that we're five minutes away from the end of the day. I'm
21 closing in on my two hours. I only have about 15 minutes left of
22 examination for the witness.
23 Sir, you describe being in a cave before crossing over. Can you
24 describe for the Trial Chamber what the terrain was like in this area
25 where you and the other people from Zepa were hiding while you were
1 deciding what to do. Can you describe that terrain?
2 A. It was in the area of Poljanica in the Drina canyon. And there's
3 a hunting trail there and a cave where we were. During the Second World
4 War, my father used this cave when he was hiding, and hiding from the
5 Chetniks, not these same Chetniks, but from the Chetniks and from
8 Actually, they -- there were also people who were not able to cross to
9 the free territory. There were some 40 people there around me. They
10 were there with me and my brothers.
11 Q. Witness, two things.
12 MR. THAYER: First is, Mr. President, we need a redaction.
13 That's page 87, line 13.
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It will be done.
15 MR. THAYER: Okay.
16 Q. And, again, sir, please, my question was very specific. You
17 mentioned a cave and a canyon in this area of Poljanica. Can you
18 describe -- describe for the Trial Chamber what this terrain was really
19 like in this area where you were hiding. Was it flat; was it hilly; was
20 it forests? What was the actual terrain like? Just tell the
21 Trial Chamber, please.
22 A. The Drina canyon is surrounded by very high cliffs. There's a
23 place called Crno Dol where the hunting trail reaches these cliffs. It's
24 very hilly and then there are some woods. The cave is called Sokolina.
25 And then lower from the cave towards the Drina, it's very inaccessible.
1 The cliffs are inaccessible and it's very dangerous. You can't go any
2 further. They are cliffs, as cliffs. I don't know what else to say.
3 It's in the area of Poljanica, and the entrance from above is
4 called Crno Dol. There used to be fields there. They might be covered
5 in woods by now. That's what it looks like.
6 Q. Okay. And can you tell the Trial Chamber in the couple of
7 minutes we have left today exactly how you made it across the
8 Drina River? How did you physically get across that river?
9 A. We had some inner tubes of some truck tires, and we inflated
10 them, and that's what we used to cross over on the other side of the
12 MR. THAYER: Mr. President, I think I have about 15 more minutes
13 of questions and just one map to show the witness to make some marks, so
14 I think I will exceed by two-hour estimate by about 15 minutes. But if I
15 can continue tomorrow, I think I will be able to finish in that time.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much.
17 Sir, we have to adjourn now because we are at the end of today's
18 hearing. You have to come back tomorrow to the courtroom. I'm sorry for
19 that, but Mr. Tolimir will cross-examine you tomorrow as well.
20 We adjourn and resume tomorrow in the afternoon at 2.15 in this
22 The Court Usher will assist you.
23 Thank you very much. And we adjourn.
24 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.44 p.m.,
25 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 15th day of
1 February, 2011, at 2.15 p.m.