1 Thursday, 21 April 2011
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Good morning.
6 Like the last three days, we are sitting with two Judges only,
7 pursuant to Rule 15 bis, due to the absence of Judge Nyambe.
8 The witness should be brought in, please.
9 MR. VANDERPUYE: Good morning, Mr. President.
10 I have some information for the Court.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE: Good morning, Your Honours.
13 We have translations of the following documents, Mr. President:
14 P1955, and we have the B/C/S translation; P1961, also the B/C/S
15 translation; P2136, again the B/C/S translation; P2137, an English
16 translation; and P2138 and P2139, B/C/S translations.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much. They will no longer be
18 marked for identification, pending translation, but received as exhibits.
19 [The witness takes the stand]
20 WITNESS: MILENKO TODOROVIC [Resumed]
21 [Witness answered through interpreter]
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Good morning, sir. Please sit down.
23 Good morning again. Welcome back to the courtroom.
24 I have to remind you that the affirmation to tell the truth you
25 made at the beginning of your testimony still applies.
1 Mr. Vanderpuye is putting questions to you during his
3 Mr. Vanderpuye.
4 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 Good morning, again. Good morning to everyone, and good morning
6 to you, Colonel.
7 I'm just going to put a few questions, maybe a little bit more
8 than a few questions, to you concerning some issues that arose during
9 your cross-examination.
10 Re-examination by Mr. Vanderpuye:
11 Q. You testified in this case that after General Tolimir told you
12 that the preparations should be stopped concerning the prisoners, the
13 1300 prisoners that were expected at Batkovic, that you met with
14 General Simic, and that's at page 12942 through 12943 of the transcript
15 of these proceedings. You testified that he called
16 Lieutenant-Colonel Pandurevic, and that's at the same page,
17 transcript 12943, and that you relayed his order to Commander Vulin,
18 Dragisa Vulin, to go to Zvornik to obtain some prisoners, and that's at
19 the same page of the transcript, lines 17 through 20. And that's
20 essentially what you say in your interview on pages 36 through 38 in the
21 English and pages 34 through 36 in the B/C/S.
22 And on Tuesday, referring to Colonel Pandurevic's 16 July interim
23 combat report, and that was shown to you during your 2nd February
24 interview, General Tolimir asked you the following; transcript
25 page 13044, lines 18 through 24:
1 "Q. If it had been the way Pandurevic stated in his report, if
2 they had fought as a unit of the Zvornik Brigade," and he's talking about
3 the East Bosnia Corps military police, "whom would have the authority
4 over them?"
5 And your answer, which followed at lines 25 on page 13044 through
6 13045, was:
7 "No, because the military police, which was a part of the
8 military police battalion that was deployed to Zvornik, was only sent
9 there to carry out a specific task, namely to accept some of the
10 prisoners of the BH Army taken prisoner and to conduct them to the
11 Batkovic collection centre. That's a task he received from the battalion
12 commander, and I only relayed it to him."
13 Now, I want to show you P2183. That should be your statement
14 from 2nd February 2010.
15 And we'll need to go to page 83 in the English and page 73,
16 into 74, in the B/C/S.
17 When you were asked -- when you were shown the interim combat
18 report of Vinko Pandurevic, you were asked the following question by
19 Mr. Nicholls. He said, and I'll just read it - it starts at line 14:
20 "One last thing. Sorry it's getting a bit late. This is a
21 document I want to show you, just so you can see it and have a chance to
22 read it and give any comment you may like to, and it's 0068-4874. It's
23 an interim combat report from 16 July 1995, from Vinko Pandurevic, the
24 commander of the Zvornik Brigade, to his command, the Drina Corps. And
25 so this is after the fall of Srebrenica."
1 And he says:
2 "Anyway, I'll ask you to read it. The reason I'm giving it to
3 you is because in paragraph 2 you can read the whole thing, but
4 Pandurevic writes that part of the Military Police Platoon from the IBK,"
5 East Bosnia Corps, "are carrying out a decisive defence in the brigade
6 zone, sealing off and searching the terrain and the wider areas, and that
7 continues. So Vinko Pandurevic, in his report, is explaining that
8 IBK military police --"
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Sorry. Witness.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't have that document in front
11 of me.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'm reading from the interview at the moment,
13 and I'll show the document in just a second.
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Is that the right page in B/C/S on the screen?
15 MR. VANDERPUYE: We're going to have to flip over the page in
16 B/C/S in just a moment.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
18 MR. VANDERPUYE: Or I think we've reached that moment. We should
19 flip it over.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Do you see it on the screen, sir?
21 MR. VANDERPUYE: It should be at the top, lines 1 through 7,
22 Mr. President, in B/C/S.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Yes. Please continue.
24 MR. VANDERPUYE:
25 Q. And Mr. Nicholls says what the report says, and then he says:
1 "So Vinko Pandurevic, in his report, is explaining that IBK
2 military police are taking part in actions in Zvornik."
3 And your answer is:
4 "That's this part of the Military Police Platoon which went there
5 because Zvornik Brigade blocked some prisoners."
6 Now, you go on, if we go on to the next page in English -- we
7 should be going to page 80 -- I'm sorry, we should go to page 85 in the
8 English and page 74 in the B/C/S.
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, it's becoming a very compound
10 question, I suppose.
11 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'm just putting this in context for the
12 witness, Mr. President. I should -- I'll get to the point in just a
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
16 I would like to welcome all present. I wish for peace in this
17 house, and may the proceedings today be according to God's will and not
18 as I will.
19 I would like for Mr. Vanderpuye to put questions based on the
20 context, because neither I nor the witness are able to actually follow
21 and refer to what he is citing. And also for a while there was no text
22 on the monitors. So it could perhaps be put in a way that is easier for
23 us to follow. Thank you.
24 JUDGE FLUEGGE: That was exactly my comment as well.
25 Would you be able to read from that part again which is on the
1 B/C/S on top, because when you were reading that part, it was not on the
2 screen at that moment.
3 MR. VANDERPUYE: I have to go back, I think, to page 74 in the
4 English to be able to do that.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
6 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'm sorry, page 83 in English, I think, is where
7 I was.
8 All right. At the top of the page in the B/C/S, this should
9 correspond to the last sentence of the English, where Mr. Nicholls says
10 "in the zone of the brigade," so he says -- it leads up by saying:
11 "... The Military Police Platoon from the IBK are carrying out a
12 decisive defence in the brigade's zone, sealing off and searching the
13 terrain and the wider area, and that continues.
14 "So Vinko Pandurevic, in his report, is explaining that IBK
15 military police are taking part in actions in Zvornik."
16 Your answer, in response to reading this document, is that:
17 "That's this part of the Military Police Platoon which went there
18 because the Zvornik Brigade blocked some prisoners."
19 You then go on to say, and this is at page 85 in the English;
20 and 74, lines 26 through 28, in the B/C/S:
21 "I can guarantee, and you can check with the commander of the
22 battalion and the commanding officer who went there, that this military
23 police platoon from the IBK did not take part in combat activities.
24 Pandurevic just wrote it."
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye -- yes, we didn't have it in
1 English on the screen. Now it is there, line 21.
2 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'd like to show the witness that 16 July
3 interim combat report, and that's P1089.
4 Q. And I won't read it out, but take a look at paragraph 2 which was
5 referred to you in your interview back in 2010, and let me know when
6 you've had a chance to read it.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Could the B/C/S version be enlarged a bit. Thank
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've read it.
10 MR. VANDERPUYE:
11 Q. Do you stand by what you said in your interview, that that is
12 this part of the Military Police Platoon which was sent there after you
13 spoke with General Simic and directed his order to Dragisa Vulin?
14 A. Yes, I do. I stand by what I said, from what I've been following
15 so far, and I'm saying that a part of the platoon that took part in the
16 combat was duty-bound to inform me and the commander that they had
17 participated in combat, that they had sustained casualties. But they
18 reported back to us that they had carried out the assignment, which was
19 to take custody, escort, and hand over the prisoners of war to the
20 Batkovic Collection Centre. I do not really want to deal with the report
21 and what the commander of the Zvornik Brigade wrote. That is up to him.
22 MR. VANDERPUYE: All right. I'd like to show you 65 ter 7322,
24 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, while the document
1 is still here, perhaps we can see if the witness is correct. Perhaps he
2 can be asked about the contents of item 3, where Colonel Pandurevic
3 states that he had opened the corridor. You cannot conduct combat
4 actions once the corridor is open. Thank you.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I think it's up to the Prosecutor to decide his
6 way of conducting the interrogation of the witness during re-examination.
7 I don't see that this was an objection to any question, but is a
8 proposal, how to conduct the re-examination. It's up to Mr. Vanderpuye
9 to do that.
10 Please carry on.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President. I actually asked for
12 7332. I apologize if I misspoke.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Would you please repeat the number?
14 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'm sorry, Mr. President. It's 7332.
15 Q. What we have on the screen in front of you, Colonel, is a combat
16 readiness report dated 29 November 1995.
17 MR. VANDERPUYE: Mr. President, we have a partial translation of
18 the document because we haven't had enough time between yesterday and
19 today to complete it. But the relevant portions of it are translated.
20 Q. And you can see, sir, that this is from the Command of the
21 3rd Battalion of the Military Police, and it's dated 11 --
22 29th November 1995.
23 If we can go to the last page of this document. I don't think we
24 have a translation of the last page, but if we go to the bottom, you can
25 see that it's signed by Komandant Major Dragisa Vulin. That's the
1 Command of the Military Police Battalion; isn't that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. All right.
4 MR. VANDERPUYE: If we go to page 3 in the B/C/S, we'll see item
5 number 5. I'm mistaken, I'm sorry. Page 4 in the B/C/S, we'll see
6 item 5.
7 Q. And under item number 5, it provides information about military
8 police tasks carried out by the Military Police Battalion, and it talks
9 about the permanent tasks of providing security for the commander of the
10 East Bosnia Corps, for the chief of the East Bosnia Corps; I believe it's
11 probably the Chief of Staff. The chief of security of the
12 East Bosnia Corps, that would be you; right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And these are the types of things that you would see in a combat
15 readiness report; an assessment of the activities of the unit during the
16 period that it's covered; right?
17 A. Yes. We saw a report on combat readiness for 1995. We saw the
18 first page, the last page, and then this page. However, the report has
19 many more pages, it's more voluminous, about all the activities from
20 command and control to logistics support or logistics.
21 Q. Let's take a look at item number 2, which should be at page 3 in
22 the B/C/S. In item number 2, it says:
23 "Units dispatch to other fronts outside the area of
24 responsibility of the East Bosnia Corps."
25 And there it includes the following information; that:
1 "The battalion was dispatched to the front in the zones of
2 responsibility for the 1st and 2nd Krajina Corps and the Drina Corps for
3 112 days or three and a half months."
4 It reads also that:
5 "All tasks were completed successfully; that the battalion was
6 commanded by the Command of the 2nd Krajina Corps, the Command of the
7 1st Light Infantry Brigade of the East Bosnia Corps, and the
8 1st Zvornik Light Infantry Brigade, in which formations the battalion
9 operated, and it shows the best that the battalion successfully completed
10 its combat tasks."
11 Now I want to show you item number 1, and that should be on
12 page 1 of the B/C/S, and it comes under the heading of "Command and
14 If we go down to item letter K, it says, directly under item
15 number 1:
16 "Organisation, preparation, execution of the combat activities."
17 In item number K, it says:
18 "Blocking the breakthrough of the Srebrenica Muslims in the area
19 of Baljkovica and Crni Vrh in the zone of the 1st Zvornik Light Infantry
20 Brigade of the Drina Corps."
21 And that's exactly what Lieutenant-Colonel Pandurevic's interim
22 combat report states.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, was that a question?
24 MR. VANDERPUYE:
25 Q. Can you tell us about that? Can you explain it?
1 A. Lieutenant-colonel, the commander of the Zvornik Light Infantry
2 Brigade, Mr. Pandurevic, and Major Dragisa Vulin wrote that in their own
3 characteristic way in the textual reports, Vinko Pandurevic for the daily
4 combat report, and then they kind of embroidered their annual balance of
5 work. So he used a little bit of a robust terminology for that task.
6 I still am asserting, and, if necessary, the Prosecution or the
7 Court can, if they deem it significant, check - Mr. Vulin is still
8 accessible, available, and alive - it wasn't him who went, anyway. One
9 of his senior officers actually went with some 10 or 15 policemen, with a
10 truck, and over a period of a number of days they were taking custody and
11 bringing over prisoners of war of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina to
12 the Batkovic Camp, which is what we saw yesterday by looking at the list
13 of captured members of the B&H Army. We saw that they were not all
14 brought on the same day, but that it began sometime, I think, on the
15 16th or the 17th, as far as I can remember, of July, and then it went on
16 for a number of days. As the Zvornik Brigade was capturing a certain
17 number of prisoners during combat, then members of their military police
18 unit were taking custody of them.
19 I would like to note the following as well: Both of these senior
20 officers were good and professional officers, commanding officers.
21 However, they both had a kind of tendency of immoderate ambition to get
22 promoted quickly. So this is also one of the ways they did that, through
23 reports in which they stated that they were making major efforts,
24 sustaining major casualties, in order to make the superiors believe -- or
25 get a better impression of them about their professional capabilities.
1 I have no reason, or any personal reason, to negate it, even if
2 the unit did take part. I mean, it's a combat assignment. It didn't
3 participate in anything that was illegal. But I know for a fact that it
4 wasn't the way it was presented, so I would like to state that for my
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
8 In view of the fact that this is a question regarding the report
9 on the combat readiness dated the 29th of November and that the report
10 speaks about legal military activities, it does not speak about prisoners
11 at all, then I don't know on what basis Mr. Vanderpuye is claiming that
12 it took part in the capture and escorting of the prisoners which it
13 captured and brought them to Batkovic, because in the third paragraph it
14 already says that the corridor was open and that 5.000 Muslims had passed
15 through. That is why I ask that the third paragraph also be read out.
16 Thank you.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
18 Mr. Vanderpuye.
19 MR. VANDERPUYE: Just bear with me for one moment, Mr. President.
20 [Prosecution counsel confer]
21 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thanks, Mr. President.
22 Two things. First, that's not what I'm claiming. I'm not quite
23 sure what General Tolimir -- what his objection is. It's not my claim
24 that the people that are mentioned in here are gathering prisoners or not
25 gathering prisoners. It's the witness's testimony that's at issue, and
1 the witness has testified, I think, relatively clear and on that.
2 If General Tolimir feels the need, upon leave of the Court, to
3 re-cross-examine this witness on that issue, then it's up to him to make
4 that application and up to the Court to determine whether or not it's
5 appropriate in the circumstances. But I think the record is clear as to
6 our position and it's clear as to what the witness has testified to.
7 There should be no mixing of the two.
8 I would like to show the witness, first, P1459. We'll need to go
9 to page 76 in the B/C/S first, and 77 in the English, and then we'll need
10 to go to page 80 and 81 respectively.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: First I state that I didn't interpret the comment
12 of Mr. Tolimir as an objection to a specific question, but it was more a
13 suggestion to conduct the re-examination in a different way. But this
14 should be decided by the Prosecution.
15 I would like to ask Mr. Vanderpuye: What about the last
16 document, 65 ter 7332? Are you tendering it? It just disappeared from
17 the screen.
18 MR. VANDERPUYE: Just a minute. I'm sorry, Mr. President.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It was the last document you used with the
21 MR. VANDERPUYE: I am tendering it. We intend to complete the
22 translation of it, is the issue, so I guess it will be marked for
23 identification, pending the completion of the translation. Thank you,
24 Mr. President.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
1 The document, 65 ter 7332, will be marked for identification,
2 pending completion of translation.
3 MR. VANDERPUYE: And I'd like to have --
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: One moment, one moment.
5 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'm sorry.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, 65 ter document 7332 shall be
7 assigned Exhibit P2184, marked for identification, pending full
8 translation. Thank you.
9 MR. VANDERPUYE: Could I put up, instead, 65 ter 7337. And I'd
10 like to have the witness handed the original of this book. It's the duty
11 operations book for the Command of the East Bosnia Corps.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Yes, it may be given to the witness, with the
13 assistance of the Court Usher.
14 Mr. Vanderpuye, you should direct the Court Usher and the witness
15 to a specific part of this document.
16 MR. VANDERPUYE: Yes, Mr. President, I appreciate that. I just
17 see that the translation I have up here does not correspond to the
18 original, so maybe we'll have to do it on the ELMO if we've got one.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The ELMO is available.
20 MR. VANDERPUYE: Okay. If we could put the book on the ELMO, and
21 we can go to ERN page ending 0528.
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: With the assistance of the Court Usher, indeed.
23 We don't see anything. Oh, it's not directed to the book.
24 MR. VANDERPUYE: All right.
25 Mr. President, I understand from Ms. Stewart that it is loaded
1 and it's page 773 in e-court.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I was told it is in e-court, and --
3 MR. VANDERPUYE: There it is.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: -- we don't need the ELMO anymore. The book
5 should be taken away from the ELMO.
6 MR. VANDERPUYE:
7 Q. I'm going to refer you -- if you want to hold on to that book so
8 you can read it better, or if you need it in order to read what's --
9 what's written better, maybe you can take a look at it that way. But I'm
10 going to direct you specifically to the entry beginning at 0500 hours.
11 If you look beneath that, you'll see an entry at 1020. It's the
12 second one from the bottom of the page.
13 A. Which date?
14 Q. You should see on there that it should be the 15th of July,
15 because a couple of pages forward, or the next page forward, you'll see
16 the date of 16 July.
17 But let me refer you first to this entry at 1020, where it reads:
18 "They called from the Main Staff and ordered us to work pursuant
19 to the order of General Miletic."
20 At 1050, it says:
21 "General Miletic - round up the men and send them to Pandurevic
22 in the Drina Corps."
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Is it possible to enlarge it? There's a
24 technical problem again, I think. And in English, is it possible to
25 enlarge it? Thank you very much. And in B/C/S, it's not possible,
1 I think. Oh, now it works. Thank you.
2 Mr. Vanderpuye.
3 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you.
4 Q. And then it says -- we can't see it on the screen, but you can on
5 the book. In the column to the right, the second-to-last column in the
6 right, it says:
7 "Message received."
8 And it's signed by somebody. And then:
9 "Measures taken," in the last column on the right.
10 And it says:
11 "Inform commander of the East Bosnia Corps and the chief."
12 Do you see that?
13 A. You're talking about entries for 1020 and 1050?
14 Q. That's right. Let's go to the next page.
15 A. Is there a question or should I just follow the text?
16 Q. Just follow for a moment, and I'll ask you a question in a
18 We see entries here on this page, and I want to direct your
19 attention to 1120 through 1820. There, in the middle of the page, you
20 see the date, "16 July 1995."
21 At the entry at 1110, it says:
22 "Colonel Gengo - inform General Miletic that General Simic said
23 that he cannot send the men to the Drina Corps."
24 You'll then see the entry at 1820, which says:
25 "General Gavric ordered 50 policemen to go to Zvornik ..."
1 And then it says:
2 "... 16 July 1995, and the unit commander to receive the task on
3 15 July 1995 in the evening."
4 Can you tell us about these entries and the sending of police to
5 the Zvornik Brigade, as referred to in this duty operations log-book for
6 the corps command?
7 A. I can say this with full authority: This information has nothing
8 to do with what I was talking about. This is the Chief of Staff, deputy
9 commander of the corps, probably acted as commander of the corps in the
10 absence of the commander. He ordered, along the military chain of
11 command, that a part of the Military Police Battalion be used in a
12 certain way, and sent them to carry out an assignment in the area of
13 another unit. This entry has nothing to do, I repeat, with the
14 assignment of taking custody of and bringing prisoners of war, about
15 which I discussed in Belgrade and on the third floor with you and here in
16 the courtroom. I followed this diary.
17 The Main Staff asked for assistance and support. General Simic
18 first said it was not possible, they couldn't do it. And then I suppose
19 he changed his mind and his decision because the circumstances had
20 probably changed, and they decided to send 50 policemen, who reported
21 eventually to the Zvornik Brigade, and that's the assignment that I
22 talked about. But I was confused at the time because I thought it was
23 the same thing as the task that I testified about. This assignment, in
24 fact, is completely different and separate from the assignment of
25 bringing in prisoners of war.
1 Q. It's a different assignment. Is it different men?
2 A. It's a completely different assignment. A military police unit
3 in this assignment did not carry out military police work. It acted,
4 instead, as a regular combat unit in carrying out a task given them by
5 the commander of the Zvornik Brigade, when they reported to him that they
6 were joining their unit for a specific purpose. These 50 policemen
7 reported to the commander of the Zvornik Brigade.
8 From that moment on, until the moment when they returned to their
9 original unit, everything they did, they did on the orders of the
10 Zvornik Brigade commander, and the Zvornik Brigade commander was
11 responsible for all their actions.
12 But when I discussed something earlier, I discussed something
13 quite different, the 50 policemen who went -- who drove in their vehicles
14 to bring in prisoners of war to the Batkovic site. Now I see from this
15 diary that there was also this particular assignment, just as many other
17 Q. These are the same men?
18 A. There were members of the same unit. They were not the same
19 individuals. The Military Police Battalion numbered 200 to 300 people.
20 You can look it up in the combat report, the strength.
21 These 50 men mentioned here have nothing in common with what I
22 talked about earlier. These 50 men went to another location to carry out
23 a combat assignment. I talked about a reinforced squad who drove in
24 their own vehicles to take custody and bring in the members of the
25 Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina who had been taken prisoner. They are not
1 necessarily the same individuals by name, but they are members of the
2 same unit.
3 Q. So how many military policemen did the East Bosnia Corps have
4 deployed to the Zvornik Brigade area in the Drina Corps on 15 July; a
5 hundred? 16 July, I'm sorry. A hundred?
6 A. On the 15th -- or, rather, the 16th, under one assignment
7 received from the commander or the deputy commander, 50 men were sent to
8 the Zvornik Brigade, led by their commanding officer. They were told to
9 report to the commander of the Zvornik Light Infantry Brigade to carry
10 whatever assignments they are given by the Zvornik Brigade commander, and
11 I did not talk about that assignment. I was not even aware of it until
12 this moment. Or, rather, I was probably aware of it at the time, but it
13 was not the focus of my attention in this case.
14 During those days, another group of members of the
15 Military Police Battalion, 10 to 15 of them, not more, would go every day
16 whenever they were summoned by the Zvornik Brigade and told that there
17 were 15 or 17, as we saw yesterday in the report of the commander of the
18 Zvornik Brigade - I believe he mentioned that in the course of the day,
19 he had 34 prisoners of war - well, these prisoners of war were taken over
20 by those members of the Military Police Battalion and escorted to
21 Batkovic. They were from the same Military Police Battalion of the
22 East Bosnia Corps, but these 50 men were not on the same assignment.
23 They were sent to the Zvornik Brigade and re-subordinated to the
24 Zvornik Brigade; whereas the other group, the 15 men, carried out a
25 completely different task.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
3 Mr. Vanderpuye asked Mr. Todorovic a moment ago about the people
4 dispatched on the 15th. However, we see, in this column or paragraph 18,
5 that the commander received them. However, in the Todorovic statement,
6 we see that the take-over of prisoners was agreed on the 16th. This
7 makes it obvious that these were two different and separate assignments,
8 and I believe the Trial Chamber should take that into account.
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, the Trial Chamber will take
10 everything into account, what we hear in the courtroom.
11 I would like to put a question to the witness.
12 You stated, and please correct me if that is wrong, that the men
13 for these different tasks were from the same unit. Is that correct?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Other units of the military police
15 in the Eastern Bosnia Corps, no, there were no other units; there was
16 only this military police battalion. It had one APC Company, although it
17 had no APCs, so it was practically a motorised company; then there was a
18 traffic police; and then there was a company for logistics, et cetera.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: That was not my question. I asked you about the
20 two groups of 50 military police each. You said, and this is page 18,
21 lines 16, 17, and 18:
22 "These 50 men mentioned here have nothing in common with what I
23 talked about earlier. These 50 men went to another location to carry out
24 a combat assignment."
25 How do you know that?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Maybe there's some misunderstanding
2 due to interpretation. I've been trying to say that up to this moment, I
3 was not able to remember, and maybe I didn't even know at the time
4 because it was not my duty to know what orders the commander had given to
5 whom. It is the commander who issues orders to the military police, not
6 the security chief. These military policemen who were sent to the
7 Zvornik Brigade were sent to help the Zvornik Brigade carry out their
8 combat assignments. And until I saw this entry in this log-book, I
9 didn't, perhaps, even know about it. What I knew about and conveyed to
10 the commander of the Military Police Battalion one of those dates - I
11 can't remember the exact date - is that he should send to the
12 Zvornik Brigade one squad, that is, 10 to 15 military policemen, with the
13 required number of vehicles, in order to take custody of and bring back
14 ABiH prisoners of war to Batkovic. These 50 men are on -- are from the
15 same unit, but they were not on the same assignment as the squad I just
17 Maybe these 15 men set out only on the 17th, whereas the other
18 ones left on the 15th, and these 15 men make the trip several times over
19 several days, picking up varying numbers of POWs each time. We saw
20 yesterday that the total number was 171. Their task was to drive there,
21 collect, and bring back the captured members of the BH Army to Batkovic,
22 to the collection centre.
23 Did I make myself clear now?
24 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You told me two times, or Mr. Vanderpuye two
25 times, that you didn't know anything about the 50 policemen and their
1 task, and again now, during your answer, you said:
2 "Until I saw this entry in this log-book, I didn't, perhaps, even
3 know about it."
4 How can you conclude that these men had a different task than
5 bringing in prisoners of war? How can you be sure of that? You stated
6 twice that you didn't know anything about this different task to take
7 part in combat activities.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I keep saying I didn't know. But
9 seeing this now in this diary, I'm trying to remember. And let me remind
10 you that there has been a lot of discussion in this courtroom about who
11 commanded the Military Police Battalion. The Military Police Battalion,
12 as well as all other units, are commanded by the commander and perhaps
13 the deputy commander in the commander's absence. In this case, the order
14 was given by the Chief of Staff of the East Bosnia Corps, Galic. My
15 superior commander is not required to inform me about what he decided and
16 what orders he had given.
17 However, concerning the 15th, he ordered me to pass the message
18 on to the military police commander to designate 15 of his men who would
19 go, more than once, to the area of responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade
20 to bring back groups of prisoners of war.
21 Is it any clearer now?
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: This is a conclusion you are drawing today, is
23 that correct, because you told us that you didn't know about the other
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm stating with full
1 responsibility now that this is the first time that I'm seeing this.
2 Thousands of assignments during those few years were given to the
3 battalion commander. The corps commander didn't ask me about that. He
4 didn't have any need to ask me about that, especially in urgent
5 situations when there isn't enough time --
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I just wanted to know if this is a conclusion
7 you're drawing today, because you said you didn't know about this combat
8 task before today.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you. One additional question.
11 You referred to a required number of vehicles to transport the
12 prisoners of war. What kind of vehicles were used?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Military Police Battalion had
14 transporter trucks used for the transport of their own members and, if
15 needed, for other persons too, because these are tarpaulin-covered trucks
16 and they have benches at the back for sitting. These are transport
17 trucks, and they are built specially for military purposes. They have
18 broader, stronger tyres and other special features.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: How many people could sit on such a truck? How
20 many seats were there?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As a rule, you can transport 22
22 persons at the back of the truck who are not carrying full combat
23 equipment. If they are fully kitted out, then it can accommodate
24 10 per bench on each side.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
1 Mr. Tolimir, you wanted to say something.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
3 I would perhaps like to make a suggestion to Mr. Vanderpuye just
4 to ask Mr. Todorovic who was performing the escort duties. Would it be a
5 traffic or transport unit? And I think he mentioned before that it would
6 be the transport unit members who were conducting the transport of these
7 prisoners because they were specifically not equipped for combat. So
8 perhaps he could put that question to the witness.
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, you may continue as you wish.
10 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
11 Q. You heard General Tolimir's question, Colonel. If you're able to
12 answer it, why don't you give him an answer.
13 A. It's up to the commander of the battalion, when he gets an
14 assignment from his superior officer, when he evaluates the specific
15 nature and the weight of the assignment, which part of the battalion
16 units he would engage in order to execute this assignment. Of course, as
17 for combat assignments, he would assign most frequently members from the
18 2nd Company, the armoured transporter company, which is specifically
19 designed for combat action. The 1st Company is designed to provide
20 security. This is the motorised company; they provide security for the
21 commander, the escorts, the collection centres, when they need to bring
22 somebody in, and so on and so forth. The transport platoon is entrusted
23 with escorting military columns that are moving.
24 In wartime conditions, however, due to the units not being
25 staffed up to full strength, it's up to the commander himself to study
1 the assignment and to decide which part of the unit he would engage for a
2 specific assignment.
3 So I really cannot answer any more specifically than that.
4 Q. Let me ask you this, Colonel: If your commander had ordered the
5 Military Police Battalion, through its commander, to report to the
6 Zvornik Brigade 50 men and also given you an order to instruct the
7 Military Police Battalion commander to send a squad to the same area of
8 responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade of 10 to 15 men, as you say, how
9 many of those men would have come under the command and control, as it
10 were, of the Zvornik Brigade commander?
11 A. Just these 50 would be subject to the command of the
12 Zvornik Brigade, who were obliged, when they report to the zone, to
13 report in, and then they are completely under the command jurisdiction of
14 the commander of the Zvornik Brigade. These 10 to 15 that I'm talking
15 about, however, they were not under the control of the Zvornik command at
16 all. They report to a specific location where these prisoners of war are
17 located, they take custody of them, they make a record of their names,
18 and then, under escort, they go to the location where they are supposed
19 to hand over these prisoners. In this case, this was the
20 Batkovic Collection Centre. So only these 50 people are under the direct
21 command of the Zvornik Brigade.
22 I was a little bit confused. I'm sorry, I didn't really speak
23 very nicely of Pandurevic and Vulin, in terms of their character. But my
24 question is: How can these 10 to 15 people be of any use to them in
25 their combat assignments, but actually neglecting to think of these
1 other 50? So this is what I talked about. I ascribed that to them as
2 being too ambitious and that they boasted too much, but actually, when I
3 said that, it slipped my mind that there were these other 50 men too.
4 Q. If Vulin took the 10 to 15 people, the squad that you asked him
5 to set aside to transport prisoners, out of those 50 men, how many would
6 have to come under the command of the Zvornik Brigade commander?
7 A. No, he did not take the 15 from that group of 50. That group was
8 compact, or it should have been. He took from the barracks, perhaps on
9 the 16th -- I don't remember when I received that assignment. From the
10 men who were still available, he formed this group of 10 to 15 men for
11 this assignment that I'm talking about. These 50 left on the 15th, in
12 the evening, to carry out their assignment. Up until the assignment was
13 carried out, they were under the command of the Zvornik Brigade, up until
14 the time they returned to their home units.
15 MR. VANDERPUYE: Okay, I think I see the problem.
16 If we could go to 65 ter 7337. That's the log-book. I don't
17 know if you still have it in front of you. And let's take a look at the
18 entry at 1820 hours.
19 Q. I take it, from your answer, that you're under the impression
20 that those 50 men left on the 15th. If you're able to read it, can you
21 read what it says at the entry at 1820 hours?
22 A. Yes. This is what I was just explaining. General Gavric
23 ordered -- General Gavric, let me clarify, is the deputy commander and,
24 at the same time, Chief of Staff of the Eastern Bosnia Corps, a person
25 who has the right, on behalf of the commander, in his absence, to issue
1 orders. He ordered 50 policemen to go to the Zvornik Brigade on the
2 16th of July, 1995, 1995, and the unit commander received the task on the
3 15th of July, 1995, in the evening. So in the night between the 15th and
4 the 16th of July, he was supposed to prepare the men, to assemble them,
5 issue them with adequate weapons. And then, on the 16th, report up there
6 to the Zvornik Brigade in order to carry out the assignment.
7 Q. So they would have reported to the Zvornik Brigade on the
8 16th of July, not the 15th, according to this entry?
9 A. Yes, according to what is written here, because the 15th is the
10 date that the assignment was received, and then it states that they
11 should go to the Zvornik Brigade on the 16th.
12 Q. Let me show you what's reflected --
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
15 It states here, clearly, that the unit left on the 16th and that
16 the commander of the unit went on the 15th, in the evening, to receive
17 the assignment. He went to Pandurevic on the 15th. Thank you.
18 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, are you not testifying in this
19 courtroom today. So you may think about that as you want, but now
20 Mr. Vanderpuye is conducting his re-examination.
21 Mr. Vanderpuye.
22 MR. VANDERPUYE:
23 Q. Colonel, let me ask you again: If Dragisa Vulin, to whom you
24 relayed General Simic's order, was told to set aside a squad of 15 men of
25 that 50 that were supposed to go on the 16th when you spoke to him, that
1 would leave 35 men to report to the Zvornik Brigade Command, wouldn't it?
2 It's simple math.
3 A. In my previous answer, I said that that was not the way to look
4 at that.
5 So these 50, on the 15th, in the evening, received an assignment
6 somewhere. I don't know if it was at the command post of the
7 Eastern Bosnia Corps or at some other location. On the 16th, they went
8 to carry out that assignment. And others from that same battalion who
9 stayed back in the barracks, policemen, soldiers, perhaps on the 16th, in
10 the afternoon, or the 17th - I don't remember the date - when I issued
11 the order, so Vulin took 10 to 15 men from those who were left behind,
12 prepared them, take a certain number of vehicles in order to carry out
13 this part of the assignment of receiving, transporting, and accommodating
14 the prisoners of war. And he did that within a few -- he did that over a
15 few days, 20, 30, 50, until the figure of 171 that we referred to in the
16 courtroom here yesterday was reached.
17 MR. VANDERPUYE: Let me show you P1459. And we're going to need
18 to go first to page 76 in the B/C/S and 77 in the English.
19 Q. What you have in front of you now is - hopefully, we'll have
20 it - is a copy of the Zvornik Brigade's duty officer note-book. And
21 we've stopped on this page because we can see the date here of
22 16th of July, 1995. You can see that in the B/C/S, I hope. That's right
23 in the middle of the page and it's boxed in.
24 Now I want to show you -- we'll go to --
25 A. I see it.
1 Q. I'd like to show you page 80 in the B/C/S and page 81 in the
2 English, and I'm going to direct your attention to the entry at 1050
4 The B/C/S is not yet there.
5 And in your case, it should be right in the middle of the screen
6 in the B/C/S version.
7 A. Yes, I see it:
8 "1050, 35 soldiers sent from the IBK to the IKM."
9 If this is what you're drawing my attention to.
10 Q. Indeed. It reads:
11 "At 1050 hours, 35 soldiers from the East Bosnia Corps, IBK, were
12 sent to the IKM," of the Zvornik Brigade.
13 What happened to the other 15 soldiers, if you know, Colonel?
14 A. I can just assume and to try to explain my assumption to you.
15 General Gavric ordered that 50 policemen be prepared. However,
16 when Commander Vulin appeared in front of him at three-metre distance to
17 receive the assignment, then there is the possibility that he said,
18 General, sir, I do not have the possibility of preparing 50 combat-ready
19 men, but I can perhaps prepare 30 to 35 men, maximum, by tomorrow, and
20 then they can be available. And then when he was receiving this
21 assignment, well, now we could draw the information from their
22 statements, perhaps. I'm just speculating.
23 But I'm not connecting this in any way to those 10 or 15 for the
24 other assignments, because this type of assignment, of bringing in,
25 securing, and handing over assignments, younger policemen were not used,
1 the younger officers who were fit for combat assignments. Security and
2 all these other activities of different kinds were tasks for which older
3 men were engaged, those who could not really undergo strenuous physical
4 efforts. When the assignment was received in the evening,
5 Commander Vulin explained that he could not prepare 50, but 35, and that
6 this was approved, and that he sent 35 who had reported to the IKM of
7 the -- where the commander of the Zvornik Brigade was.
8 I don't have another explanation.
9 Q. Wouldn't the most straightforward explanation be that of the
10 50 men that were going there on the 16th, 15 were set aside to do the
11 task that you were directed to inform Komandir Vulin to carry out, and
12 that's why they don't report to the IKM, because they're not under the
13 command of the Zvornik Brigade commander, 15 of the 50, and 35 are?
14 A. I cannot accept this possibility, either professionally or
15 personally, because from the beginning I have been telling you that I
16 received the assignment from the commander for those 10, 15 men and for
17 that task. These 50 never went through my head anywhere, and their
18 engagements, so adding up those two numbers, 35 and 10 to 15, is not
19 feasible. The 35 that, in the final stage, appeared for the execution of
20 the assignment is one group, and this is distinct from this other group
21 of 10 to 15 who were entrusted with taking custody of, transporting, and
22 handing over the prisoners in Batkovic.
23 Well, perhaps you can accept my answer. I don't have any other
24 answer, really.
25 Q. What happened to the 15 of the 50, then? What were they doing in
1 the Zvornik Brigade on the morning of the 16th if they weren't reporting
2 to the IKM? Do you know what was going on the morning of the 16th, or
3 that afternoon, in the area of responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade?
4 Did you hear about that? What do you think these 15 were doing, Colonel?
5 A. I don't know. Perhaps what I said was not interpreted. I
6 specifically said in my previous answer: The commander of the military
7 police unit of the Eastern Bosnia Corps, on the 15th, in the evening, was
8 there to receive an assignment from the Chief of Staff, most probably,
9 General Gavric, and he was told at the time to prepare 50 policemen. I
10 assume that he said, General, sir, I do not have 50 men at my disposal
11 right now in order to carry out this assignment. I have the possibility
12 to engage 35 military policemen.
13 Then - and I'm assuming this; it's an assumption of mine and an
14 attempt to explain - then General Gavric approved that and told him, Very
15 well, send those 35 policemen as urgently as possible to report to the
16 commander of the Zvornik Brigade tomorrow in order to carry out the
18 I don't have any other logical answer or explanation.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Sir, I would like to ask you again: How do you
20 know that Commander Vulin explained that he could not prepare 50, but
21 only 35, men? Do you know that for a fact or is it an assumption?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Perhaps I'm speaking too fast, so
23 that everything is not being interpreted.
24 My introduction, when I explained this the previous time, and
25 now, is that I assume, and then I explained what I explained. I wasn't
1 present when Vulin was receiving this assignment or when he said that he
2 had 50 or didn't have 50, or 30, or anything else. So I'm only assuming
3 that this could have happened while the process of the implementation of
4 this task was taking place.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: This is an assumption and a conclusion you are
6 drawing today. Why can you exclude the other possibility?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Why can you exclude the other possibility? How
9 is it possible?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All this time since I've seen this
11 entry in the diary, up until this moment now, I am trying to recall
12 whether perhaps the battalion commander, when I relayed the assignment to
13 him from the corps commander to take custody and escort the prisoners
14 from the Zvornik Light Brigade, told me that there was already a part of
15 the unit up there at the Zvornik Brigade and that this would not be a
16 problem. Then I would accept that the difference then would be this,
17 between the 35 and 50. However, I remember that the battalion commander
18 did not inform me about that part, but accepted the assignment without
19 any comment at all. That's why I assume and am basing my assumption the
20 way that I have explained.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, please carry on.
22 MR. VANDERPUYE:
23 Q. Colonel, wouldn't that be explained if you simply got the order
24 before the order came -- that you got the order from General Simic before
25 the order came to send 50 men? Isn't that the most rational explanation
1 for why Vulin didn't tell you that there were 50 guys already in Zvornik,
2 because they weren't already in Zvornik and he hadn't received that order
3 when you told him that he had to send a squad down there? Isn't that the
4 most rational explanation?
5 A. Well, in my opinion, no, and that's because of the following:
6 Only after this 16th does the combat report of the Drina Corps mention
7 the first group that was transferred to the Batkovic Collection Centre.
8 This is not mentioned at all before the 16th or the 14th.
9 So as much as I can, I'm trying to make logical connections and
10 conclusions. I'm sorry, but I do know, in a manner, the structure and
11 the manner of command and decision-making, and so I am making a
12 conclusion based on the manner in which we were trained and in the way we
13 worked. So only on the 17th, perhaps, or the 16th in the afternoon, the
14 first group was probably there that was supposed to be transported to
16 Q. I see. And so there's no record of that group because they
17 didn't report to the Command of the Zvornik Brigade; right, Colonel?
18 A. There isn't a record in this particular diary for a million other
19 assignments that were carried out as well. The only things that are
20 recorded here are those things that went through the
21 Duty Operations Centre. So when the commander is not present, or the
22 Chief of Staff, the duty operations officer is there 24 hours a day at
23 the Operations Centre, and he receives information, assignments, and
24 orders, and conveys them to whoever they are meant for. Otherwise,
25 orders are received directly, by mail, personally, for the commander or
1 the chief, and then the duty operations officer would not have access to
3 MR. VANDERPUYE: I think it's time for the break. I have a
4 couple of documents I'd like to show the witness, so maybe we should pick
5 up then, Mr. President.
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And the log-book is still in front of the
7 witness, I think. The Defence should have a chance to look into it, and
8 we would like to see it after the break.
9 MR. VANDERPUYE: Absolutely. Thank you, Mr. President.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: We must have the first break now, and we will
11 resume at 11.00.
12 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
13 --- On resuming at 11.02 a.m.
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I take it that the Defence had the chance to look
15 into the log-book which is in front of the Chamber at the moment.
16 Mr. Vanderpuye, I just would like to draw your attention to the
17 matter of including documents into the 65 ter exhibit list. We used the
18 document which is now marked for identification P2184. That was not in
19 the 65 ter exhibit list, but we always have this little note: "With the
20 leave of the Chamber." We would always like to have -- to address that
21 to the Chamber, that this should be included to the 65 ter list. I just
22 want to remind the Prosecution.
23 Go ahead, please.
24 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
25 Q. Colonel, you had a look yesterday at D228, which was a list of
1 Muslims that were exchanged from the Batkovic Collection Centre.
2 General Tolimir showed you that list. And there were entries on that
3 list showing the dates of arrival of certain prisoners from the
4 18th of July. You remember seeing that yesterday and commenting on that?
5 A. Yes, I remember that.
6 Q. In fact, on that list, the earliest date that's reflected that
7 anyone came that was exchanged, as is indicated, was the
8 18th of July, 1995; is that right?
9 A. I'm not sure whether the 18th of July is the earliest date for
10 the first group that came to the collection centre of Batkovic or that
11 it's the date of the exchange, the first exchange. Maybe I am not quite
12 sure about that.
13 Q. All right. Well, we can -- I can show it to you. It's D228.
14 We shouldn't broadcast it.
15 A. Right. One page is enough, of the list.
16 Q. All right. Let's go to the first page of the list. I think it's
17 page 2 in the B/C/S.
18 A. I meant the first page of the list. There's a cover page, but I
19 meant the first page of the list.
20 Q. We can do that.
21 A. Yes, we can see. This list is chronologically divided. The
22 first group of five men arrived at Batkovic on the 18th of July, so
23 that's the first arrival of the first group of prisoners at
24 Batkovic Collection Centre.
25 Q. All right. I don't want to mislead you, but it's actually not
1 chronologically divided. But you are right; the 18th July is the first
2 date upon which this list records individuals as having arrived at the
3 Batkovic Collection Centre.
4 I can see that the pagination isn't the same, but you can see
5 clearly the 18th of July reflected in numbers 1 through 5 here.
6 On page 5 in the English, if we go to number 49 - if we can find
7 that in the B/C/S, maybe it's two pages forward - we'll see that date
8 again reflected. Page 3 in the B/C/S, and it should be page 4 in the
9 English, I suppose. One page in advance. That's right.
10 And page -- you can see line 49, lines 55, and lines 60 also
11 record the 18th of July. And, of course, you would have noticed there's
12 no sooner date than the 18th of July.
13 And then if we go a little bit further on to page 6 in the
14 English, and we're looking for items -- line numbers 100 through 102 in
15 the B/C/S, page 5, you'll see, again, numbers 100 through 102 reflecting
16 the date of the 18 July 1995.
17 And then if we go to page 7, and, again, also there's no earlier
18 date than the 18th of July. And if we go to page 7, number 133 to 138 --
19 I'm sorry, 6; 6 in the B/C/S. 133 through 138, again you will see
20 18 July 1995 is the earliest date reflected.
21 The following page, 8, and it's the next page in the B/C/S also,
22 numbers 157, 162, 163, 166, and 170 also reflect the 18th of July, 1995.
23 So you're right, it's not chronological.
24 To your knowledge, these people that arrived at the Batkovic Camp
25 on the 18th of July, how did they get there?
1 A. Looking at these dates, I can say with even greater certainty,
2 and I infer, that it's certainly not the same group, those 35 and 50 men,
3 as opposed to those 15 men on the same assignment. Those 35 or 50 were
4 on a combat assignment, whereas the 15 received instructions from me,
5 originally issued by the commander of the corps, on the 17th or perhaps
6 the morning of the 18th, and the instructions were to go and bring back
7 the first group of POWs to Batkovic. So the first group that was picked
8 up to be transferred to Batkovic was picked up on the 18th. In other
9 words, that group of policemen went to the -- went there on the 18th for
10 the first time.
11 Q. Went where?
12 A. Well, the assignment I was talking about, issued to me by the
13 corps commander to be conveyed to the Military Police Battalion
14 commander, was to prepare and designate a group of men from the
15 Military Police Battalion, and I said roughly it was 10 to 15 men, with
16 the required number of vehicles. And that part of the military police
17 unit went to Zvornik, to the area of responsibility of the
18 Zvornik Brigade, only on the 18th and took over the first group of
19 prisoners that they escorted to the collection centre of Batkovic. And
20 when they were told that there is a new group of prisoners, they again
21 drove there and brought them to Batkovic, and so on over the course of
22 several days until the last day.
23 Q. And who did they take these prisoners over from?
24 A. From someone in the Zvornik Brigade. I can't answer that
25 question, really. I don't know. From somebody who is responsible for
1 that sort of work in the Zvornik Brigade. And the first time they got
2 there, they established contact, on the 18th. I mean, that part of the
3 unit of the military police from the East Bosnia Corps made contact with
4 someone in the Zvornik Brigade and took over the first group on the 18th.
5 They agreed the mode of take-over for the next groups, and they continued
6 until the last hand-over. Now, who that person in the Zvornik Brigade
7 responsible for the prisoners was, I don't know. I don't know where they
8 were based, in which house, which village, et cetera.
9 Q. How do you reach that conclusion? I mean, how do you exclude the
10 possibility that these people were otherwise brought to the Batkovic Camp
11 directly, without the involvement of your unit or with the involvement of
12 your unit?
13 A. You mean which part of the unit? You mean the 35?
14 Q. How do you exclude that the people that you see in this list that
15 arrived at the Batkovic Camp on the 18th of July, 1995, did not arrive
16 there from someplace other than Zvornik, or through some other unit, or
17 with the assistance of another unit and your unit? How do you exclude
18 all those possibilities and say, affirmatively, that these are the
19 individuals that your unit took over in the Zvornik Brigade pursuant to
20 the order that you passed on to Dragisa Vulin?
21 A. Well, I'm making that conclusion based on the fact that I passed
22 on to Captain Vulin the order I received from the commander, and the
23 knowledge that this assignment was carried out over a number of days,
24 beginning with the 18th, and that information was sent, every time a new
25 group of prisoners arrived at Batkovic, that these prisoners were
1 interviewed and registered by the ICRC, and they were given the first
2 packages by the ICRC, and they were informed of their rights and
3 entitlements in the procedure that followed.
4 Q. All right. I want to show you 65 ter --
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Let me put a question to the witness --
6 MR. VANDERPUYE: Oh, sorry, Mr. President. I hadn't noticed.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: -- just to that.
8 You received the order from the commander and you conveyed this
9 order to Captain Vulin; that's correct, yes?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: What did you tell Captain Vulin, where he should
12 pick up the prisoners?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I summoned Captain Vulin and
14 told him as follows: The corps commander has ordered that you prepare
15 and send the required men -- the required number of policemen and
16 vehicles for the transport of prisoners of war from the area of
17 responsibility of the Zvornik Light Infantry Brigade. They should report
18 to the Command of the Zvornik Brigade to be informed of the exact
19 location and all the necessary details to complete the assignment.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You were not told by the commander what kind of
21 prisoners and -- this was referred to and where they have been before
22 they were picked up by Vulin and his men?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The corps commander told me briefly
24 this. I spoke to the commander of the Zvornik Brigade,
25 Lieutenant-Colonel Pandurevic, and he told me that they have a certain
1 number of prisoners, members of the BH Army. They need to be taken over
2 to be brought to the Batkovic Collection Centre. I didn't ask him where
3 these men were from, Sarajevo or somewhere else, but I knew that they
4 were in the combat area of the Zvornik Brigade. And that's how I defined
5 the assignment to the battalion commander, that he should send the
6 required number of vehicles, with the necessary security detail, to take
7 over that group of prisoners, members of the BH Army, from the area of
8 responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade. The leader of these men should
9 report to the Command of the Zvornik Brigade to agree about the details.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
11 Mr. Vanderpuye, please carry on.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE:
13 Q. These individuals that are logged in as having arrived at the
14 Batkovic Camp on the 18th, were they injured in any way?
15 A. I knew nothing about their health status, and I cannot speak to
16 that. It was the camp warden who was supposed to know these things
17 because he reported about the conditions in the camp to his superiors,
18 just as I reported to my superiors. Everyone reported along their line
19 of work about the situation in the area of responsibility of the
20 Eastern Bosnia Corps, and these daily briefings were attended regularly
21 by the camp warden of Batkovic, who reported to the commander about the
22 conditions in the camp, how many prisoners needed medical assistance,
23 whether any exchange was planned, how many people were planned for the
24 exchange, et cetera.
25 Q. All right. Well, you would have known something about these
1 prisoners, wouldn't you? Isn't your responsibility or one of your
2 responsibilities to interview them and gain information to pass on to
3 your superior, General Tolimir, along the security chain or intelligence
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Your answer, please.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Some of the members of my service,
7 from the section that I commanded and managed, were involved in the first
8 reception and interview of the captured members of the BH Army. I
9 explained that to the Prosecutor during proofing as well. The job was to
10 make sure that personal details are correctly recorded in the files, to
11 avoid errors and mistakes concerning certain facts that needed to be
12 recorded, to establish to which unit they had belonged and in which part
13 of the theatre they had been captured, and if any one of them was willing
14 to provide information about their unit, although they avoided that, most
15 of them. For the most part, it was not possible to get any important
16 information from them, and we did not insist. This entire procedure of
17 reception and providing the necessary conditions was the duty of the
18 warden of the collection centre and his personnel.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The question was: Did you receive this
20 information obtained from the prisoners, and did you forward them to your
21 superior? You didn't answer that question.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I received information about the
23 number of arrivals and their structure, and I reported that up the chain
24 along the security line and also the corps commander. And we also
25 compared our information with the warden of the collection centre to see
1 if there are any discrepancies.
2 Now, from the security aspect, I did not have any particular
3 observations. It was impossible to get any information relevant for
4 security or intelligence, so there was no need for me to report about
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Again, sir, are you saying you, as the chief of
7 security and intelligence in your unit, you just received a list of
8 prisoners and not the outcome of an interrogation?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I didn't say I was not aware of the
10 outcome, but the outcome was such that there was nothing relevant to
11 security and intelligence in there. These interviews did not yield any
12 information pertinent to security and intelligence.
13 You can imagine that those people were frightened, confused,
14 fearing for their lives, that sometimes they found it hard to even say
15 their name, let alone tell you something important that would require my
16 further engagement.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
19 On page 40, line 16, Mr. Vanderpuye asked Todorovic whether he
20 had provided that information to his own superior, General Tolimir.
21 Please, the witness should be asked, loud and clear, what kind of
22 information he provided to his security superiors, whether he was
23 required to provide information about the health status of prisoners or
24 security information, whether he was at all required to inform me about
25 the state of health of prisoners of war.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir, you should be patient. I'm quite
2 sure that Mr. Vanderpuye will continue asking the witness about these
4 Please carry on, Mr. Vanderpuye.
5 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
6 Q. Just in context, Colonel, in your position as the chief of
7 security and intelligence in the East Bosnia Corps, you did receive
8 information concerning prisoners that were brought to not only the
9 Vanekov Mlin, but also that were brought to the Batkovic Camp or Prison;
10 right? All kinds of information.
11 A. In my previous answers, and that's why I was trying to be brief
12 now, so the day before yesterday, yesterday, and today, I said in my
13 testimony that if needed, we would -- my service that I led would bring,
14 from time to time, somebody from the Batkovic Collection Centre for an
15 interview to Vanek's Mlin in order that the other prisoners of war would
16 not be present or be aware that this person was being interviewed, and to
17 prevent them later asking him, Who did you speak to, What did you say?
18 So this is a part of the customary procedure in such events.
19 Then in the first interview, you don't really get any significant
20 intelligence/security information. Later analysis of everything would
21 bring us to the conclusion that, for example -- well, I don't need to
22 read the names, but one of these persons named was the commander of a
23 certain battalion. After four or five days, when the person rests,
24 begins to function normally, settles in, then there is another
25 informational interview with that person, again in a normal human
1 atmosphere, Where was he, Why was he there, Does he want to help us, and
2 so on and so forth.
3 Q. I don't mean to interrupt you, but it's a pretty basic question.
4 And you can tell us, yes, you receive all kinds of information, or, no,
5 there's certain information you don't receive, but what I want to know,
6 specifically, is: When a prisoner is brought to the camp, do you receive
7 general information, the number of prisoners, the condition of prisoners,
8 where they're housed, or how they're secured from the camp? Do you
9 receive that general information?
10 A. I receive such information -- or, actually, I get such
11 information and data from daily briefings at the corps command, when they
12 are submitted by the warden of the collection centre. I am then -- I
13 acquaint myself with all the information then, for example, that there
14 are three persons who are ill, there are four others who have different
15 kinds of problems, and so on and so forth. The purpose of this initial
16 data-gathering by members of my service is not to generally process the
17 prisoners, but it's just an attempt, in this first blitz contact, to see
18 and, in a way, check whether the whole procedure would be respected and
19 whether all the people will enter the centre and be registered.
20 Q. Did you get any information -- with respect to the individuals
21 that arrived at the camp that we saw on the list on 18 July 1995, did you
22 get any information that they were wounded or they were injured or they
23 were in need of any kind of medical attention? Did you get any of that
25 A. My organs, two or three of them who participated, depending on
1 the number of persons that arrived, I did not get information of that
2 nature, nor was it their goal to gather information of that kind about
3 the general status and the problems of captured members. Then, I repeat,
4 later, during the briefings, I would listen to the report of the warden
5 of the collection centre, for purposes of being informed, who then
6 actually did report that kind of data, because the objective and the
7 assignment of my service was not general care and regulation of
8 everything that had to do with the collection centre. That is the job of
9 the warden of the collection centre, who is directly responsible for the
10 situation and the overall work of the collection centre.
11 Again, I emphasise --
12 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not catch what the rest of
13 the sentence was.
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You started the last sentence with the words:
15 "Again, I emphasise ..."
16 What did you emphasise?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I replied -- in my answer, I
18 described what they did and what was the goal of the members of the
19 service that I was working in joining in the interview or the
20 conversation. It was just to gather initial information and to be
21 present to see if everyone would --
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I asked you to repeat the last sentence of your
23 answer, not the whole answer, only the last sentence, because the
24 interpreters didn't get that. And you said:
25 "Again, I emphasise ..."
1 But what -- how did you continue this sentence? If you don't
2 recall, it doesn't matter. Mr. Vanderpuye could continue.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said I emphasise, again, the main
4 objective of members from my service participating was to gather initial
5 information and observations and to be present so that they could have
6 insight as to whether all those who had arrived were registered and had
7 gone through the reception process and are accommodated at the collection
8 centre, to avoid the situation where you would have 50 reporting at the
9 gate and 49 being registered as inmates, with one person missing,
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
13 Q. The order to pick up prisoners, did that include going to
15 A. No.
16 Q. And did the individuals, that is, the Military Police Platoon,
17 did they go to Bratunac?
18 A. In my answer to one of the previous questions, and Mr. -- the
19 Presiding Judge asked me to repeat, therefore, my testimony about
20 transferring the commander of the military police to report to the
21 command of the Zvornik Brigade, and from the AOR of the Zvornik Brigade,
22 to take custody of, escort, and place into the Batkovic Collection Centre
23 the captured members of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I -- well,
24 perhaps it happened that during the implementation of the assignment
25 somebody at the Zvornik Brigade said, There are five of them at a
1 different location, so there would be a need for you to go and pick them
2 up. That is something that, for now, I don't have any information on. I
3 don't have any knowledge of that until this moment.
4 Q. All right. I'm going to show you 65 ter 1434.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, I know it's a time-consuming
6 exercise today, but there should be one time you should come to an end
7 with your re-examination.
8 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
9 There are actually a couple of -- I'm really trying my best to
10 move through this as quickly as possible, and I'm sure you can see that.
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It's appreciated. But just a second. This list,
12 should it be broadcast or not?
13 MR. VANDERPUYE: It should not be broadcast.
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It should not be broadcast. Thank you.
15 Go ahead, please.
16 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you very much, Mr. President.
17 Q. What you have here, Colonel, is a list of persons to be
18 transferred under guard, and it indicates the 3rd Battalion of the
19 East Bosnia Corps, and it provides a list of 22 individuals. It says
20 persons were escorted on 18 July 1995, at 1600 hours, with their personal
22 Is the 3rd Battalion of the East Bosnia Corps, the military
23 police unit, the unit that you've been speaking about?
24 A. Yes, that is the unit.
25 Q. So these are your MPs, the corps' MPs?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And from this document it appears that they picked up
3 22 individuals at the day -- on the day and at the time that's indicated
4 in this document.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And these individuals they picked up from the 5th Military Police
7 Battalion, and it says "Vlasenica" here. That would be the
8 Drina Corps Military Police Battalion, wouldn't it?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Now, I don't want to use up extra time, but I can tell you we've
11 checked this list of 22 individuals, and this list corresponds to D228,
12 which is what I just showed you before, containing some 170 individuals.
13 And every one of these individuals is on that list, and there is no one
14 on that list that arrived at the Batkovic Camp on 18 July 1995 that's not
15 one of these 22 individuals.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: What is your question?
17 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'd like to tender this document, Mr. President,
18 and show the witness another document.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Were you going to put a question to the witness
20 about this list?
21 MR. VANDERPUYE:
22 Q. Well, do you confirm that it refers to the unit that's under the
23 command of the Eastern Bosnia Corps; that is, the Military Police
24 Battalion of that corps?
25 A. Yes, this is the 3rd Battalion of the Military Police of the
1 East Bosnia Corps, because often this Index 3 is left out and you just
2 write "IBK," but it's actually the same thing, because there is this --
3 does this page have any -- does this document have any more pages, or is
4 it stamped or certified in any way?
5 Q. It has more pages, and it's not stamped or certified.
6 A. Well, is there a question? Do you need a comment?
7 Q. No, I don't need a comment.
8 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'd like to tender this document, and I'd like
9 to show -- under seal, and I would like to show the witness another
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It will be received under seal.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 1434 shall be
13 assigned Exhibit P2185, admitted under seal. Thank you.
14 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'd like to show you P2168.
15 I think we have a handwritten version of this same document, so
16 maybe if we can -- and it might be on the next page - I hope so - page 3.
17 Q. I don't know if you can read that any better, but what it says in
18 the English, and maybe you can listen to the translation and confirm that
19 that's what's written in the handwritten version of this document, is
20 that it's from the Command of the 1st Bratunac Light Infantry Brigade.
21 The document number is 08-34/95, and in the typewritten version you can
22 see the date reflected as 18 July 1995. It is directed to the
23 Main Staff Security and Intelligence Sector and the Command of the
24 Drina Corps, and it reads that:
25 "On 18 July, at 1545, 22 wounded prisoners from the 28th Division
1 were evacuated, with a police escort provided by the Drina Corps, from
2 the Health Centre in Bratunac."
3 You'll recall that the document I just showed you, with the list
4 of 22, says they were escorted on 18 July at 1400. So my question to you
5 is: The 18 -- the 22 individuals that show up at Batkovic on
6 18 July 1995 didn't come from the area of responsibility of the
7 Zvornik Brigade, did they?
8 A. The previous list for me is like a blank document. There is no
9 signature that they were taken into custody or handed over to anybody.
10 It's just a drafted list, and there is a remark of who did what. There's
11 no signature or indication that this was actually carried out. You
12 checked that these persons are listed as people who arrived at Batkovic,
13 but not on the 18th, but probably at some later date.
14 That 5th Battalion of the Drina Corps most probably -- well, I'm
15 concluding this. I don't have any personal knowledge about that. So
16 they most probably brought them to Zvornik. In Zvornik, they stated that
17 they handed them over at 1600 hours. As for whether they did hand them
18 over at 1600 hours or later is open to debate, but I don't have any
19 knowledge of it myself.
20 MR. VANDERPUYE: Mr. President, I'd like to -- well, this
21 document is already in evidence, I see.
22 What I'd like to do, since -- if it's possible, is to have
23 P2185 - that's just the list and we shouldn't display that
24 one - displayed against D228. And if we could just go to the first page
25 of that list and the first page of -- third page of that list and the
1 first page of -- and this list, I think we should be able to make a
2 comparison. It's the second page of 228 and the first page of 2185.
3 I think we might have to display it in English so the
4 Trial Chamber can actually compare the names.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: No, it's fine with this list. We can see the
7 MR. VANDERPUYE:
8 Q. Can you tell us, just by number reference, which of the names on
9 the left, which is P2185, correspond to the names on the right, which is
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: If you find the identical name, please don't say
12 the name, but just indicate the number.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Number 12 in the Serbo-Croatian
14 version corresponds to the number - just one moment, please - 5 in the
15 English version. I'm sorry. Number 5 in the English version. And he
16 arrived at Batkovic on the 18th of July.
17 MR. VANDERPUYE:
18 Q. Maybe in the interest of time we should find a different one --
19 A. Number 9 in the Serbian corresponds to number 1 in the English
20 version, and he was also brought there on the 18th.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
23 I would just like to say this briefly: It's very difficult to
24 compare the alphabetical list on the right-hand side with the other list
25 which has names, last names, beginning with different letters of the
1 alphabet. The other list only has names, last names, that begin with an
2 A. The list shown to the witness was shown in alphabetical order, but
3 now we're looking at the same list. One is in English and one is in the
4 B/C/S. I don't know what the difference is. Thank you.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: This is absolutely correct. Your observation is
6 correct, but there's no other way to compare.
7 Please carry on, Mr. Vanderpuye.
8 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you.
9 In the interest of time, I'll just put on the record that
10 number 1 in the list on 228 corresponds to number 4 on 2185; number 2
11 corresponds to number 9 on 2185; number 3 corresponds to number 19 on
12 2185; number 4 corresponds to number 12 on 2185; and number 5 corresponds
13 to number 10 on 2185.
14 Q. Those are the five individuals listed on 228, which is the list
15 General Tolimir showed you, all of whom arrived, as is indicated, on
16 18 July 1995 and all of whom appear on the list that is dated
17 18 July 1995, indicating that your Military Police Battalion received
18 prisoners from the Drina Corps Military Police Battalion at 1400 hours on
19 18 July 1995.
20 A. Sixteen.
21 Q. Sixteen. Thank you for the correction. That's all correct;
23 A. All of this stands with the proviso that the list is not signed
24 either by the person handing them over or accepting custody. We don't
25 know that the assignment was entirely carried out on the 18th at
1 1600 hours or was, perhaps, a number of those persons handed over later.
2 This is very difficult now, after such a long time and from the place
3 where I am now, to determine. I was not there during either part of the
4 process, so I'm unable to say anything about that. The location is not
5 given for the hand-over. All it says is that they were handed over to
6 the 3rd Police Battalion of the East Bosnia Corps. I don't know if they
7 were handed over in Vlasici, Milici, Zvornik. So there is a broad area
8 for all kinds of conclusions, and that is why I wouldn't want to burden
9 my conscience with that, since I wasn't the one who was carrying out this
11 Q. Thank you. Let me show you 65 ter 144.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, I don't see this document on the
13 list of exhibits to be used during redirect.
14 MR. VANDERPUYE: You're right, Mr. President. It's on the list
15 of my -- it was on my original exhibit list.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you. But, again, you should be aware of
17 the time you are using.
18 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
19 Q. This is an 18 July combat report, interim combat report, from the
20 Drina Corps Command. It is signed by General Krstic. In paragraph 2, or
21 item 2, rather, of this document, we read, and we'll have to get the
22 first page in English:
23 "Our 1st Zvornik Brigade, reinforced by a company from the
24 16th Krajina Brigade, a company from the 1st Bratunac Light Infantry
25 Brigade, two East Bosnia Corps Military Police Platoons, and a platoon
1 from the 1st Vlasenica Light Infantry Brigade, successfully repelled all
2 enemy attacks from the front, carried out the blockading and combing of
3 the terrain in the general sector of Crni Vrh, Pandurica, Krizevici, as
4 well as fully secured the old and new Zvornik-Tuzla road."
5 You see that, and it refers to two platoons from the
6 East Bosnia Corps Military Police on the 18th of July engaged in,
7 effectively, combat activities.
8 Can you explain that, Colonel?
9 A. I think that's already explained. On the 16th of July, a unit of
10 35 soldiers reported. That's approximately two platoons. A full
11 complement of a platoon of military police is 30 men. And since we
12 decided, by analysing all this, that there were 50, those are two
13 platoons of 18. This document was shown yesterday as well, and I said
14 that it's some kind of bragging, over-statement, because I really had no
15 information that those 35 military policemen were sent to the
16 Zvornik Brigade, and those are the 35. So they were there from the 16th,
17 when they reported, until I don't know which date, and during that time
18 they were assisting the Zvornik Brigade in their combat tasks.
19 Q. Well, Colonel, this document wasn't shown to you yesterday. And
20 let me just add that this document is dated 18 July 1995, because you can
21 see, from the first line, it says:
22 "On 17 July 1995, the enemy was carried out low-intensity
24 So it's clear that it's the 18th of July. And the document I
25 showed you earlier was Vinko Pandurevic's interim combat report of
1 16 July 1995, two days before this, where he refers, in paragraph 2, to
2 the assistance provided by your military police as part of a military
3 police platoon, and not two military police platoons. So that's my
5 Can you explain that, because I would assume, and I'm sure you
6 would concur, that Lieutenant-Colonel Pandurevic knows the difference
7 between part of a platoon and two platoons, as is indicated here by
8 General Krstic, the corps commander, or are they both making it up and
10 A. I have nothing special to say, except what I've already said.
11 I think that those are the 35 military policemen who reported, around
12 10.00 on the 16th, to the commander of the Zvornik Brigade. Whoever
13 drafted this, and it's certainly neither General Krstic or
14 Lieutenant-Colonel Pandurevic, but an operative officer who drafts such
15 things, and he can make mistakes or use clumsy language, just like I,
16 talking to you, clumsily used civilian terms until General Tolimir told
17 me that I should use proper military terminology. I have no other
18 comment to offer.
19 Q. Let me just add one last thing, and that is: You can see to whom
20 this combat report is addressed, and it's addressed here to the
21 Main Staff. Does that tell you whether or not it's likely to be clumsy
22 and unfortunate language that's being used by a corps commander to
23 communicate a dire situation faced by one of his brigades? Is that what
24 you did in the Eastern Bosnia Corps? That's how you reported to
25 General Simic, sloppily and clumsily?
1 A. Well, please, you should not understand this as sloppy or clumsy
2 reporting, that that's not the way I put it. I was -- I am, after all, a
3 trained officer. But in my unit, and especially in those light units, we
4 had mostly reservists who had not even graduated from the School for
5 Reserve Officers, but took up their duties and did their best.
6 Q. Thanks, Colonel. You were shown yesterday --
7 MR. VANDERPUYE: I'm sorry, Mr. President. I don't think this
8 18 July combat report's admitted. I'd like to tender it.
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It will be received.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 144 shall be
11 assigned Exhibit P2186. Thank you.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE:
13 Q. You were shown yesterday, Colonel, a document by General Tolimir
14 which was a report concerning the Dayton peace negotiations. You'll
15 remember that. And it indicated that he was engaged in those affairs
16 from the 1st of November to the 21st of November. He asked you about
17 what you knew about his ability to be engaged in those affairs and also
18 be available and performing his functions, and you opined, and this is at
19 page 13118, line 17, through 13119, line 4 --
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Tolimir.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
22 I would appreciate it if Mr. Vanderpuye gave me proper
23 references, because I did not ask the witness about my own abilities and
24 performance, as indicated in lines 1 to 6, page 56.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye gave a reference on the
1 transcript, and we all remember that you were dealing with this, your
2 participation in the Dayton Accords.
3 Please carry on, Mr. Vanderpuye.
4 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 Q. The question was:
6 "Thank you. Since we've seen in the Dayton Agreement document
7 that on the 1st of September I was in Dayton, until the 21st -- actually,
8 from the 1st until the 21st of November, could you please tell us, for
9 the purposes of the transcript, could I have been both in
10 Republika Srpska and in Dayton from the 1st to the 21st of November?
11 "Actually," it says, "could the transcript reflect correctly your
12 answer, since you've already gave an answer. So could the transcript
13 correctly reflect whether you said yes or no. Thank you."
14 That was the question. Your answer was:
15 "My answer is that you could not have been in the
16 Republika Srpska or in the Main Staff, performing your duty by
17 establishment. Also, I can state with full responsibility that for a
18 considerable amount of time before that period you had to have been
19 absent from your duties in order to adequately prepare for such a complex
20 and big assignment."
21 I'd like to show you P1427.
22 You'll recall that the Presiding Judge asked you specifically
23 what information you had about the whereabouts of General Tolimir on the
24 5th of September, 1995, and that was in relation to the transfer from the
25 Vanekov Mlin prison of Avdo Palic.
1 I think we're going to need to go -- what I'm showing you now is
2 a diary of General Mladic. It's admitted in evidence in this case. And
3 I'm going to ask you to go to page 17 in the B/C/S. It should be page 7
4 in the English.
5 MR. VANDERPUYE: All right. We have is a -- I think, a
6 transcript on the right of the B/C/S, and what I need is the English
7 translation, if you have it. Otherwise, I can just have him read it.
8 Q. And here we have an indication. It says:
9 "Mali Zvornik, 1st September 1995 at 1500 hours."
10 It says:
11 "Meeting with General Janvier."
12 And it says:
13 "Present: ZV with five members, General Perisic, Toso, Gvero,
14 Kralj, and I."
15 The Toso that's referred to in this document, is that
16 General Tolimir, to your knowledge?
17 A. As far as I know, there were only two of us with the nickname
18 Toso: I, as short for "Todorovic," and General Tolimir. I'm sure I did
19 not attend that meeting. Now, is there anyone else called Toso?
20 MR. VANDERPUYE: Let's go to page 11 in the English and page 21
21 in the B/C/S. This one is dated 4 September 1995. Pale is the location.
22 And it indicates a meeting with SRK commanders.
23 I'd like to take you to page 17 in the English and page 27 in the
24 B/C/S, which follows on from this meeting. And here we see a reference
25 to General Tolimir, in particular; and it reads:
1 "Intentions of NATO forces - they will continue to threat and use
2 force at given moments. They may carry out acts and provocation along
3 the axis Kiseljak-Ilidza-Sarajevo."
4 Q. Does that tell you where General Tolimir was on the
5 4th of September, 1995? Does that refresh your recollection?
6 A. Yesterday, when I was questioned by General Tolimir, I stated
7 with full responsibility, although perhaps that did not make him happy,
8 that I was unable to speak about the dates and locations where he was at
9 different times, because he was not required to inform me of his
10 whereabouts. From the 1st to the 21st, he was where he was, and I
11 believe for some time before that. Whether that some time was 10 days or
12 more or less, I don't know. It was the necessary preparation time. I
13 did not state at any point that he was there at any specific time before,
14 the 4th, the 5th, or any other date.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You said again, "1st to the 21st." Which month
16 are you referring to?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] November, the Dayton negotiations.
18 JUDGE FLUEGGE: That means two months later after these entries
19 here in the war diary of Mr. Mladic; correct?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, not two months. A month. Oh,
21 yes, sorry, sorry, yes. Yes, there's also October. You're right, sorry.
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Vanderpuye, I don't see the purpose of more
23 questions to that matter. Indeed, you should come to an end of your
25 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 I raise this issue only because it appears that that is the
2 position that's taken by the accused in this case. I believe we've asked
3 for specific information if there was alibi that was going to be asserted
4 in the case, and it appears that during the cross-examination this is an
5 avenue that the accused pursued with this witness, and that's the reason
6 why I think it's relevant. I think, on the other hand, you're right, and
7 I don't want to belabour the point.
8 And since this is already in evidence, I don't have any further
9 questions on this matter. There's just a couple -- a couple of issues
10 I think I can raise with him in the remaining time we have before the
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I hope very much.
13 Mr. Tolimir, you wanted to raise a matter.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
15 Mr. Vanderpuye referred to me and my position. I asked the
16 witness yesterday whether you were -- whether he was aware of where I
17 was. I didn't claim that I told him about my location or whereabouts.
18 My point was whether I was aware.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I understand what you are saying, but everything
20 is on the record. There's no need for further discussion.
21 Mr. Vanderpuye.
22 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
23 Q. You were shown a statement that was made by General Smith, and
24 General Tolimir put some questions to you, and quoted it, in fact,
25 stating that eventually Mladic gave permission to the ICRC to visit the
1 prisoners. At that time, he was not concerned about the reports that the
2 BSA had separated men and women in Srebrenica, as the ABiH did exactly
3 the same when they captured large villages. And General Tolimir put the
4 following question to you, and he said:
5 "Did you know, through the media or in other ways, that
6 General Ratko Mladic approved or allowed the ICRC to register all the
7 prisoners of war in Srebrenica? Thank you."
8 And your answer was:
9 "I know from the media, as I said, from the footage that is
10 constantly being replayed, and from looking at parts of the transport of
11 the population from Srebrenica to the B&H Federation, that the buses and
12 the trucks that were going mostly were transporting women. There was the
13 odd man also among them. As for the records and the presence of certain
14 institutions, I really couldn't say anything about that as precisely as
15 I've been able to talk about matters in the East Bosnia Corps AOR. That
16 was my responsibility."
17 Now, I do have a document that I'd like to show you, but I think,
18 in the interest of time, I'll just tell you that in the UN report, which
19 is D122, concerning the fall of Srebrenica, at paragraph 409, the ICRC
20 reported that it was only able to register 164 prisoners from Srebrenica
21 and 44 from Zepa and were told that no other prisoners were being held
22 and were accordingly shown a number of empty detention centres in the
23 Bratunac area. And this is following the London meeting which occurred
24 in the middle of July.
25 Let me show you a document that did go to the East Bosnia Corps,
1 which is 65 ter 4072A.
2 Here, we can see this is a Main Staff Sector for Security and
3 Intelligence document. It's dated 29 July 1995, and it says that it's
4 directed to the attention of the security organ of the East Bosnia Corps.
5 That would be you. It talks about the disarmament of the Zepa Brigade,
6 the 1st Zepa Brigade.
7 And if we can go to page 2 in the English. If we can go to
8 page 2 in the English, and we can read where it says, in the second
9 paragraph on the page - it should be paragraph 3 in the B/C/S - it says:
10 "Continue combat operations in order to surround and destroy the
11 1st Zepa Brigade until the Muslims make the exchange and carry out the
12 agreement from the 24th July related to their disarmament and surrender.
13 Take all necessary measures to prevent them from leaving the
15 And then it says:
16 "Do not register persons you capture before cessation of fire,
17 and do not report them to international organisations. We are going to
18 keep them for exchange in case the Muslim do not carry out the agreement
19 or they manage to break through from the encirclement."
20 You can see this document was directed to your attention. Can
21 you explain that?
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Before you give an answer: Mr. Tolimir, but,
23 please, if you have an objection, you may raise it, but don't comment on
24 this question before we have received the answer of the witness.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Yesterday, in the course of examination-in-chief and
2 cross-examination, he was not asked about events in Zepa at all, but I do
3 not mind him being shown and read reports. That has been done before.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And now your answer, please, sir.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From the heading of this telegram,
6 you can see that the 1st Krajina Corps and myself received this report
7 only for our information, about what is going on in a certain section of
8 the theatre of war. All the listed assignments do not relate to my area,
9 nor am I asked to carry them out, so I have no comment.
10 MR. VANDERPUYE: All right. Thank you, Colonel.
11 I would like to tender the document, if it's not already in
12 evidence, and I don't think it is.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I don't think so. It will be received.
14 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President, and that --
15 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 4072A shall be
16 assigned Exhibit P2187. Thank you.
17 MR. VANDERPUYE: Mr. President, this concludes my redirect
18 examination. I appreciate your indulgence.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much.
20 Sir, you will be pleased to hear that this concludes your
21 examination here in this trial. Thank you very much that you were able
22 to come here to provide us with your knowledge and recollection. It was
23 a lengthy experience. Thank you for your patience. You may now return
24 to your normal activities. The Chamber would like to thank you again.
25 We will have our second break now, and we will resume at 1.00.
1 [The witness withdrew]
2 --- Recess taken at 12.28 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 1.01 p.m.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Before the next witness is being brought in, I
5 would like to raise a few matters. One was the log-book used by the
6 Prosecution during re-examination, 65 ter 7337. We have seen the
7 original log-book and a partial translation. This document was not
8 tendered during the re-examination, and I don't know what you want to do
9 with it.
10 Mr. McCloskey.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. Good afternoon, Mr. President,
12 Your Honour Judge Mindua.
13 Yes, that's why I was standing. We just forgot. And I've spoken
14 to Mr. Gajic about it. It didn't have a 65 ter number, but he has no
15 problem. So with your leave, we would offer 7337 into evidence.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The whole log-book or only those parts attached
17 with a translation into English?
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: It would probably be a good idea to do three
19 pages on either side just for context, but, yeah, you probably have
20 enough to read. I don't think you need the whole log-book, nor is it
21 necessary to translate it. So three pages on either side should get the
22 dates and the context and cover it.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The pages with the entries used with the witness?
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. Yes, Mr. President. And I don't have --
25 I'm not sure exactly what they are right now, but we can sort that out.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I hope the Prosecution, together with the
2 Registry, will figure out which pages have been used.
3 The document will be received as an exhibit.
4 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 65 ter document 7337 shall be
5 assigned Exhibit P2188, and, in particular, pages 73 and 74 in original.
6 Thank you.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much.
8 I would like to raise another concern, about the length of
9 re-examination, in the absence of Mr. Vanderpuye, who is no longer with
10 us this afternoon.
11 I would like to invite the Prosecution to reconsider the use of
12 Court time during the examination. Some of the questions put to the
13 witness in redirect could have been put to the witness also earlier in
14 examination-in-chief to enable the accused to put questions to these
15 issues during his cross-examination. It was a quite lengthy and much
16 longer re-examination than expected by the Prosecution, itself.
17 Sometimes it depends on the kinds and the way a witness answers.
18 This is just a general remark, and I would like to invite the
19 Prosecution to reconsider their course of action.
20 Mr. McCloskey.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. Thank you, Mr. President.
22 We understand, and I know that you understood we -- this witness
23 came off, fundamentally, what he had said in his statement to us, which
24 was somewhat surprising, and so we hustled around to find other materials
25 to try to clarify these issues, which were, as you could tell,
1 fundamental, when General Tolimir made that call. So this was a massive
2 issue, and that's why that took a lot longer. And you could see the way
3 he answered questions. So that was a surprise.
4 There was no tactical anything going on or strategic anything
5 going on in that regard. And I'm not suggesting there is, but that is,
6 of course, possible in this adversarial system, and that's not something
7 I will stand for in that regard. But I would also -- and we discussed
9 As you know, there was a six-hour cross-examination based on
10 topics that had mostly nothing to do with direct; chemical weapons and
11 alibi, other things that Mr. Vanderpuye had ready to go for redirect and
12 didn't get to because of your concern. So when you have a six-hour cross
13 that has nothing to do with the direct, that's one of the reasons why we
14 go longer. But --
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I didn't want to discuss this specific witness
16 and this specific case. It was more a general remark to take it into
18 The third point I would like to raise before we start with the
19 next witness: The Chamber would like to address the Prosecution with
20 respect to the issue of time estimates for another witness.
21 As you are aware, the Chamber has adopted a flexible approach
22 with respect to time estimates provided by the Prosecution for its
23 witnesses. The Chamber has now noticed the quite drastic change in the
24 time estimate for the viva voce witness Manojlo Milovanovic, scheduled to
25 testify in May. The original estimate for this witness was five hours
1 for examination-in-chief. The main note is -- records the estimate of
2 16 hours. Could that be simply a typo or is it a reasonable extension of
3 your time estimate? If not a typo, the Chamber is curious to know why
4 there is such a drastic change from five to sixteen hours.
5 Mr. McCloskey.
6 MR. McCLOSKEY: I will have to discuss this with Mr. Thayer,
7 though it's my witness. And I know I was -- we've been -- we have
8 discussed this, and there's been a question of whether or not we -- that
9 the five hours was based on the possibility of 92 ter. But I do know,
10 generally, that, as you've seen, we have under-estimated sometimes and
11 gotten ourselves in trouble because of that. And as we have watched
12 issues develop, and sometimes we're not able to get to certain issues
13 with certain witnesses, and I know that documents are being put in the
14 General Milovanovic pile that may have been in the General Obradovic file
15 for various reasons, and that pile for General Milovanovic has gotten
16 bigger, frankly, and so I know that that's one reason why the -- why it's
17 been raised.
18 But let me discuss that with Mr. Thayer and think about it some
19 more. I haven't really gotten to the nuts and bolts of preparing him
20 yet, and there will be a better time estimate once I get to that. But as
21 you can imagine, as Chief of Staff, he's an important witness, and there
22 have been steadily-accumulating issues that we see the general brings up,
23 very rightfully so, and that you have questions about. So that has --
24 what's created the higher time. That is a lot of time and -- but I think
25 it was a reflection of a more focussed look, and I will continue that
1 focussed look to see if I can bring it down, because I don't want to
2 spend that much time with him, frankly. But we'll have -- we'll give you
3 what we think is the best estimate.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: There's no doubt that this is a -- will be a very
5 important witness. We wanted to avoid a misunderstanding because of a
6 typo. Now you explained the situation, and we all remember very well the
7 situation with the Witness Obradovic.
8 [The Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: We have to pause for a moment because the record
10 is not working.
11 [Technical difficulties]
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Now it's working again.
13 Mr. McCloskey, your last words are missing on the record, but
14 I think there is no need to repeat that. You see the essence of your
15 submission was recorded correctly.
16 And I just concluded, after your submission, that this witness
17 will be a very important witness, for sure, but you are invited to
18 recalculate your time estimate again.
19 Mr. McCloskey.
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
21 And also, on a related point, we're, of course, always trying to
22 give you the best estimates, but I still am -- would rather err on the
23 side of lesser than more, frankly, just because when we give higher
24 estimates, then our whole timing gets fouled up, and it's actually harder
25 on the opposing party, because you've seen -- and earlier, and it messes
1 up their timing. So we have always tried to get either on or, you know,
2 below, which means we go over, and we need to do better on that. But
3 that's our theory, just so you know that, is try to get it on or below so
4 that we don't have these big estimates that constantly get
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The Chamber appreciates the efforts of both
7 parties to give a correct and reliable estimate of the time to be used
8 during examination. And we would like to continue with our flexible
9 approach on that, but we have to look into the problem of an expeditious
10 trial, as well as a fair trial. And as we just have finished with our
11 hundredth witness, we know that we have still some time ahead.
12 The next witness should be brought in, please, but we go into a
13 private session to enable us and the witness to explain his wish to get
14 protective measures. We didn't decide on that yet because we would like
15 to inquire the correct reasons for that.
16 Private session, please.
17 [Private session]
11 Pages 13224-13227 redacted. Private session.
22 [Open session]
23 THE REGISTRAR: We're back in open session, Your Honours. Thank
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The Chamber is informed that there are two
1 visitors in the public gallery related to this Tribunal, not from the
2 outside world, and, therefore, the Chamber grants to open the blind
3 before the window of the public gallery. There are only these two people
4 present. That will not pose any risk on the witness.
5 Sir, would you please rise, and would you please read aloud the
6 affirmation on the card that is shown to you now.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
8 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
9 WITNESS: NESIB SALIC
10 [Witness answered through interpreter]
11 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much.
12 Please sit down and make yourself comfortable.
13 Again, you should be aware of the fact that nobody outside this
14 Tribunal will see your face.
15 Mr. Elderkin is now putting questions to you.
16 Mr. Elderkin.
17 MR. ELDERKIN: Thank you very much, Your Honour.
18 Examination by Mr. Elderkin:
19 Q. Sir, could I start, please, by asking you to say your full name.
20 A. My name is Nesib Salic.
21 Q. What is your date of birth?
22 A. 15 July 1980.
23 Q. What's your nationality, please?
24 A. Muslim.
25 Q. And from what country?
1 A. Bosnia-Herzegovina.
2 Q. Where were you born?
3 A. Pripecak village, the local commune of Zepa.
4 Q. And what is your current occupation?
5 A. Driver.
6 Q. Sir, where were you living in 1995, the first half of the year?
7 A. I lived in my village, Pripecak, and I did not move in that
8 period. I was there all the time.
9 Q. Who were you living with?
10 A. With my father, my mother, and four sisters.
11 Q. Could you tell us, please, your father's name?
12 A. Jusuf.
13 Q. What were the conditions at your family's home at that time? How
14 many people were there? What were you all doing during that period in
16 A. Well, there were people from all over the place, from Visegrad,
17 Srebrenica, Rogatica. So I wouldn't be able to tell you exactly how many
18 and where they were from, but there were a lot of people.
19 Q. And how were you occupying your time?
20 A. Well, I stayed at home. I didn't go anywhere, and my parents
21 didn't allow me to go far from home. We moved between home and shelter,
22 home and shelter.
23 Q. Where was this shelter that you just mentioned?
24 A. Not far from our home. Five, six metres from our home.
25 Q. And why were you moving to the shelter sometimes?
1 A. Because there was shelling/sniping that we were exposed to, so I
2 had to stay close to our home. I wasn't allowed to go far.
3 Q. Did that shelling and sniping take place throughout the first
4 half of 1995 or did it only happen during a certain period?
5 A. It didn't happen that often, because in the period when it was
6 about to happen, the shelling and sniping were more frequent.
7 Q. You've referred to -- I heard in the English interpretation as
8 "in the period it was about to happen." Are you describing there the
9 period just before the fall of Zepa?
10 A. Yes. For a while before that, that's a time when we went from
11 home to a hill close by, and everyone, men, women, and children, gathered
12 in that meadow.
13 Q. I'll come to that period in more detail. But just to finish off
14 asking you about your background: How were your parents occupied during
15 this period, during the first half of 1995?
16 A. Yes. My father was there. We had cattle, and he was busy taking
17 care of it. My mother was preparing food, that sort of thing.
18 Q. Do you remember if there was a hodja in Zepa in 1995?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Can you remember now his name?
21 A. I think his name was Hajric. I can't remember his first name.
22 Q. Do you know if anybody else was a hodja in Zepa in 1995?
23 A. No. Hajric is the only hodja I heard about, but I had no
24 contacts with him. I only met the man once or twice in that couple of
25 years I was there during the war.
1 Q. Do you know if he performed religious functions?
2 A. Well, if there was a religious rite somewhere, I heard people
3 saying that they needed to invite the hodja.
4 Q. And how about funerals, for example?
5 A. Yes. The word I used was "djenaza," a Muslim funeral.
6 Q. So he would attend those events, would he?
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Gajic.
8 MR. GAJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I don't know if my
9 learned friend Mr. Elderkin is following the transcript, but the word
10 actually used was not exactly interpreted. The interpreter used the
11 descriptive term. So to clarify the transcript, maybe we should ask the
12 witness to explain what "djenaza" means.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Elderkin.
14 MR. ELDERKIN: That's certainly something I didn't catch. I
15 don't know what word was used.
16 Q. So, sir, could you please describe to us what "djenaza" means?
17 A. "Djenaza" means "internment," "funeral," but it's for the Muslim
18 community. The Catholics use different rites and have a different term
19 for it.
20 Q. Thank you. I'd like to go now to July 1995.
21 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I think Mr. Gajic is still struggling with this
23 Mr. Gajic.
24 MR. GAJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, it's not my problem.
25 I think it's a problem with the transcript. The witness actually said
1 that "djenaza" means "funeral." That's what I heard in my language.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you. I think it's not too major an issue.
3 Just carry on, Mr. Elderkin.
4 MR. ELDERKIN:
5 Q. Sir, how old were you in July 1995?
6 A. I was 15. I just had my 15th birthday on the 15 of July, 1995.
7 Q. So were you in the Muslim army at that time?
8 A. No. I mean, certainly not. I was a child, a boy.
9 Q. Do you know of any boys of your age who were in the army at that
11 A. No, because my parents, my mother especially, did not let me go
12 far from home anywhere, so I spent most of my time at home, around my
13 mother. So I had not much opportunity to go around and see if anyone my
14 age was joining the army.
15 Q. Do you remember the time in July 1995 when you learnt that
16 Srebrenica had fallen?
17 A. I wasn't aware of it then, but there was talk. When neighbours
18 came to visit my parents, they would mention that Srebrenica had fallen
19 and we had to run to the mountains, that hill that I mentioned.
20 MR. ELDERKIN: It could be a good time to break, Your Honours,
21 unless we have any additional time.
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Indeed, it is unfortunate that we have a long
24 weekend ahead.
25 We must adjourn for the day. That means we continue your
1 examination on Tuesday next week. The Court Usher will assist you during
2 these days.
3 We sat this week with two Judges, who are present today. Next
4 week, we are sitting also with two Judges, but different Judges.
5 Judge Nyambe will be back, and Judge Mindua has another appointment next
6 week, so that we have the three days next week sitting pursuant to
7 Rule 15 bis again.
8 We adjourn, and resume on Tuesday, 2.15, in Courtroom I.
9 I wish everybody a pleasant and good Easter.
10 We adjourn.
11 [The witness stands down]
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.46 p.m.,
13 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 26th day
14 of April, 2011, at 2.15 p.m.