1 Monday, 24 September 2001
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.31 a.m.
6 JUDGE HUNT: Call the case, please.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Case number IT-98-32-T, the Prosecutor versus
8 Mitar Vasiljevic.
9 JUDGE HUNT: Now, sir, you understand, do you, you are still bound
10 by the solemn declaration that you made last week?
11 A. Yes.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you. Oh, yes. I think we're in to you,
13 Mr. Domazet. The pseudonym sheet will be put before the witness. Yes,
14 Mr. Domazet.
15 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour, before I start the
16 cross-examination, with the Court's indulgence, may I state that instead
17 of Mr. Tanaskovic, who is absent, that you allow Mr. Bosko Ristic, legal
18 counsel and attorney from Nis, to assist me here today.
19 JUDGE HUNT: Certainly, Mr. Domazet.
20 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
21 WITNESS: VG61 [Resumed]
22 Cross-examined by Mr. Domazet: [Continued]
23 Q. Sir, I'm going to ask you something about what you said about
24 leaving Visegrad at the beginning of April 1992. You said that on the 4th
25 or 5th of April you had to leave Visegrad. I am not quite clear as to the
1 reasons. Were the reasons because of the threats or your official duty
2 which you had to perform in Medzedza. Could you clear that up, please.
3 A. Yes. Both reasons. The first reason was that I was assigned to
4 that part of the terrain. It was my duty to be there.
5 Q. When you talk about Medzedza, could you explain to us whether
6 there was a police station there.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Do you mean a separate building or premises where this police
9 station was located?
10 A. The police station was located in a socially owned building, in a
11 room there.
12 Q. Apart from you, were there other policemen on duty there at that
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. One or more?
16 A. More.
19 A. Yes. It was a reserve police station.
20 Q. If I understand you correctly, it was set up as a reserve police
21 station; is that right, at that time, or had it been established quite a
22 long time before that?
23 A. No. It was established quite a long time before that.
24 Q. Can you tell me, please, when it was established?
25 A. Yes. The exact date of the establishment, following a decree by
1 the Minister for Internal Affairs Bosnia-Herzegovina was the 21st of
2 April, 1991. That is the official date. I apologise. May I just add: I
3 think I said April, but it was the 21st of September. The 21st of
4 September, 1991.
5 Q. Do you know the reason for the formation of that police station at
6 that time?
7 A. The reason was a decree, an order from the Internal Affairs
8 Minister of the country, and the reason is common knowledge. A police
9 station existed previously for 10 or 15 years as a reserve police station,
10 because I was the commandeer of that station for some time and it was
11 activated exactly on the 21st of September, 1991.
12 Q. Yes. I understand that it was pursuant to an order from the
13 Minister, but what I was asking you was: Do you know the precise reason
14 why that reserve police station was formed precisely on that date, the
15 21st of September, 1991?
16 A. No, I do not know.
20 Q. And if I understand you correctly, [redacted]
21 [redacted] that was once again reactivated after a certain period of
22 time, but you weren't actually told why it was being reactivated at that
23 particular point.
24 A. Well, no. We had our regular duties and assignments, the general
25 type of thing that the police force does, general police duties. And may
1 I add something: It wasn't only that police station which was activated,
2 but eight other reserve police stations on the territory of the Visegrad
3 municipality, and predominantly in Bosnia-Herzegovina. I think all these
4 police stations were activated, reactivated.
5 Q. Well, that's what I'm asking you. That's what I want to know.
6 You've just given me a partial answer. What I'm asking you is: This
7 reactivation of the police stations, was that due to the general situation
8 in Bosnia-Herzegovina or a state of emergency on the Visegrad territory?
9 A. Yes, it was a state of emergency in this area and in
10 Bosnia-Herzegovina, so there were these extraordinary circumstances
11 prevailing in Visegrad too and the territory around it.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Just one moment, Mr. Domazet.
13 Sir, because you and Mr. Domazet are both speaking the same
14 language, you make it difficult for the interpreters unless there is a
15 break after the question before you answer. Mr. Domazet, you may have
16 noticed, is pausing before he asks you the question. That's to enable the
17 interpreters to catch up. We are receiving it in English and in French,
18 so that you should just wait just a few moments to enable them to catch
20 Yes, Mr. Domazet.
21 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation]
22 Q. At that time, that is to say, at the end of 1991 and the beginning
23 of 1992, [redacted] of that reserve police station in
24 Medzedza, did the exodus of the Serb population from Visegrad and its
25 environs start then?
1 A. The departure of the Serb population from Visegrad -- well, I
2 don't know whether it took place, but I do know, and we're talking about
3 the month of April -- actually, March, the beginning of April, before the
4 entry of the Romanija and Uzice corps into parts of the Visegrad
5 municipality from Medzedza, in view of the fact that in Medzedza there
6 were three Serb houses, but the households left and went to Visegrad from
7 the Medzedza area. Now, if you want the name and surname of these people,
8 I can tell
9 you them.
10 May I just add something, please. One of those families, one
11 of the families that left from Visegrad, the son came of that mother - the
12 name is Furtula, Milka Furtula, and he was the commander of the Romanija
13 corps and he took her away, his mother away, and the others before the
14 corps actually entered, that is to say, a few days before the corps'
16 Q. If I understand you correctly, it was from that time on that
17 Medzedza was exclusively populated by the Muslim population; is that
18 right? There were no more Serbs there?
19 A. That's right. There were no more Serbs in Medzedza. But there
20 were some Serbs in the environs. They all lived quite normally in their
21 houses and worked, went about their business.
22 Q. Prior to your departure from Visegrad at the beginning of April
23 1992, were there any incidents with any victims, involving any victims?
24 Had somebody already been killed at that time? Were there casualties?
25 A. No. And let me add. Let me give you an explanation. Round the
1 clock, non-stop, almost every day, I was in the Medzedza area and I would
2 go home only sporadically from time to time, so that I don't know what
3 actually happened in town. I don't want to make any statements along
4 those lines. What I'm saying now, please, I would like to have recorded.
5 I want to have it in the record. I was in charge of the upper part of the
6 terrain, and for two weeks I didn't know when it was day, when it was
7 night. I had so many duties to perform. I was on duty round the clock.
8 Q. Yes, I understand that. What I was asking you was about the
9 period up to your departure, prior to your departure, were there any
10 incidents like that?
11 A. Well, sir, I didn't see anything like that. Mr. Domazet, I didn't
12 see anything.
13 Q. But sir, when you say that you had such a lot of work to do in
14 Medzedza, day and night, that you couldn't have a breather, that Medzedza
15 at that time was exclusively populated by Muslims, what problems could you
16 have had, then, in a village for you to have had so much work to do, as
17 you say, round the clock, non-stop?
18 A. Defence counsel, 74 square kilometres is the local community of
19 Medzedza, with 1.556 inhabitants, and it was enough for me just to tour
20 the area, and seven days would not have been enough for me to go around
21 that area, let alone do anything else.
22 Q. You told me that you don't remember, up until your departure from
23 Visegrad, whether there were any victims, any casualties. Do you remember
24 that a Serb from Visegrad by the name of Indzic was killed?
25 A. No, he wasn't killed during those days, but I heard later on in
1 Medzedza that Indzic had been killed. I don't know his first name. But I
2 know that he was somewhere from my neighbourhood. He lived somewhere in
3 the neighbourhood of Pionirska Street in Visegrad.
4 Q. Do you happen to know that he was shot at from the direction of
5 your house?
6 A. No.
7 Q. Let me ask you once again: Did that killing perhaps not take
8 place -- the killing of Indzic, was that not perhaps the reason why you
9 left Visegrad at that time?
10 A. No, sir. I said that I would go from time to time into Visegrad
11 to take a bath, have a change of clothes, from Medzedza, because the
12 police station was up there, so I had to stay there. And that is not the
13 reason, what you've just said is not the reason for my leaving.
14 Q. But I think you said that after your departure on the 4th or 5th
15 of April, you never returned to Visegrad; is that right?
16 A. Yes, you're right. I didn't go home to Visegrad because the
17 Romanija corps was to enter from the Rogatica direction into Medzedza, so
18 I was in the field, in the terrain, so I didn't have time to come back
19 ever again. And the reason that I didn't come back was more because I had
20 received threats and because my people, or let me say my late wife, told
21 me that they were looking for me and looking for all progressive Muslims
22 in Visegrad, that the Serb police were arresting them and the
23 paramilitary, that they were searching the houses, going -- doing house
24 searches, that they were calling people up by phone and generally
25 bothering them.
1 Q. In a previous statement that you made, you said, sir, that your
2 brother had informed you that you -- they were looking for you in
3 Visegrad; is that right?
4 A. Well, I did have some contacts with my brother and the rest of my
5 family whenever I could, not only with my wife, and I also contacted the
6 police station and the police chief there, the head, and the other people
7 to whom I was subordinate.
8 Q. Yes, I understand that. But what I asked you was: Do you
9 remember your brother warning you that they were looking for you?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. As I understand it, your immediate family and that brother of
12 yours stayed on in Visegrad and were actually in Visegrad at that time; is
13 that right?
14 A. All the local inhabitants of Visegrad were in Visegrad until Murat
15 released the water from the dam, the hydro power plant, and until the
16 Uzice corps entered town. I can't say whether all of them stayed, but I
17 do know some citizens who left Visegrad previously.
18 Q. From the information that you got, you therefore learnt that many
19 had left the town because of Murat's threat to raise the dam and release
20 the water down the Drina; is that right?
21 A. Murat stated publicly, made a public announcement that he would
22 release the water from the dam, and the people from the surrounding parts
23 around the lake, whose houses were below the level of the hydro power
24 plant left. I wasn't in town to see that taking place, but by what I
25 heard from the people who talked about it and who came into the Medzedza
1 area, and those who left for Gorazde, I heard that some went to Uzamnica,
2 to the barracks there. Others went to the village of Medzedza and the
3 surrounding villages where the water would not have reached the land to
4 flood it had it been released from the dam. And there was general panic
5 in town at that time.
6 Q. Yes. Thank you. Up until the arrival of the Uzice corps, which
7 was on the 13th of April, 1992, if I'm right, the chief of police in
8 Visegrad was Ilijas Suceska. That's what you said. He was a Muslim; is
9 that right?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. At that time, prior to the arrival of the corps and your
12 departure, were there Serb policemen in the Visegrad police station or had
13 they already left?
14 A. While I was in town there were Serbs there too in the police
15 administration in Visegrad. Let me state the following: Mr. Dragan Tomic
16 was a higher-ranking inspector in that police station. Mr. Sredoje Lukic
17 was a policeman at the police station. Niko Vujcic and others. I
18 don't want to enumerate them all.
19 Q. Thank you. Do you know or did you hear that at that period after
20 your departure from Visegrad and before the arrival of the Uzice Corps, a
21 group of those particular policemen had been arrested and detained, taken
22 into custody, amongst them the men you mentioned, Sredoje Lukic a case in
24 A. Yes, but I don't know the exact date when this happened, what the
25 exact date was when they were arrested, but I do know that they were
1 arrested, yes. That is to say, I heard about it, I didn't actually see
2 it taking place. But let me be precise and specific and state here and
3 now from this seat that my first meeting with my former colleagues was --
4 I can't quite remember exactly whether it was the 14th of April or the
5 15th of April, towards evening. And I released 13 prisoners in Medzedza.
6 I ensured a kombi van for them [redacted] of the reserve police
7 station, Hurian [phoen] Nedjib and Ibrahim Hurian [phoen] took those 13
8 prisoners to the hydro power plant of Visegrad, which had been taken over
9 by the army and paramilitary units.
10 Q. Yes, but those 13 people, that has nothing to do with the group I
11 was asking you about, talking about. It wasn't Sredoje Lukic and others.
12 A. Yes, it was. All the people that I mentioned. There were my
13 colleague Sredo Lukic, Niko Vujicic, and a man named Dragicevic. I
14 can't remember his first name.
15 Q. So what you're saying is that that group, including Sredo Lukic
16 and the other policemen who had been arrested and who were at the power
17 plant -- I'm not sure that I understood you properly. Did they pass
18 through Medzedza? Were they where you were at the station, or what?
19 A. No. The same day they came to Medzedza, I think it was the 14th,
20 the first day the Uzice Corps entered Visegrad, the 14th of April, towards
21 evening. I learnt in Medzedza that that group allegedly who had been
22 taken prisoner was taken to Medzedza, this group of prisoners, taken to
23 Medzedza and they were put up in the house of Hamed Sisic, from Medzedza,
24 right next to the lake, right by the lake. I went there, as I have
25 already said, towards evening. I called Mr. Sredoje to come out and told
1 him the reason I would be coming with a vehicle, that they should be
2 prepared and that I was going to take them back home to Visegrad, which I
3 did indeed do.
4 Q. If I follow you, what you did was you finally released that group
5 and let them go back home to Visegrad; is that right? Is that what you're
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Do you know how many days they were in custody?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Do you know that at that hydro electric power plant they were
11 detained in some other place?
12 A. No. I said that I didn't spend any time in Visegrad during those
13 few days.
14 Q. Yes. I'm quite clear that you weren't there. You said that. But
15 I thought that perhaps somebody, or them, had told you about that. That's
16 why I'm asking you. But if you don't know, that's fine.
17 A. Defence counsel, let me tell you: Here and now, sitting here, I
18 am just telling you of things I'm certain about and that I can confirm at
19 any time, whenever asked, and I think that Their Honours and the
20 Prosecution and everybody else present here in the courtroom must know
21 that when the whole town went out in a panic, thousands of people, women
22 and children, can you imagine what kind of situation that was, when nobody
23 was in their houses any more, when they were not normal any more? It was
24 general pandemonium.
25 Q. In view of the fact that you were the person who saw these men and
1 who released them and maybe spoke to some of them, my question is: How
2 did they look, physically? Did they look like people who had been
3 mistreated, beaten up, and so on?
4 A. I did not talk to anyone. My sole contact was with Sredo Lukic
5 and it was a brief contact. The man appeared to be terrified. He
6 wasn't a normal person. And my colleagues called me by my nickname,
7 [redacted]. So during that first contact of mine with Sredoje, I said,
8 "What happened to you?" And the man said, "You see what happened." That
9 was the whole conversation that we had.
10 Q. Had you noticed that all of them, including Sredoje that you spoke
11 to, had had their heads shaved?
12 A. I didn't see the others. I only saw Sredoje, and Sredoje did have
13 his head shaved.
14 Q. When you say that you didn't see the others, I assume that you
15 didn't talk to them, but physically, surely, you must have seen them.
16 A. No. I said to Lukic that in half an hour this assistant of mine
17 would be arriving, the one who was working with me at the time, that he
18 would bring a vehicle and that they should go out the western side, where
19 no one can see them, to get into the van and to be taken home, and that is
20 what happened. But I didn't go back.
21 Q. Thank you. Let me now move on to another subject, that is, the
22 event that you described during your examination-in-chief, and that is the
23 event of the 13th or 14th of June, as you said, according to what your
24 father told you. You have given us quite a lot of detail and I will ask
25 you a few questions regarding those details, if you can to tell us, as you
1 also mentioned these things in your previous statements.
2 You mentioned probably on the basis of what your father told you,
3 that the column that was going to Visegrad was joined by a person called
4 Milorad Mico Lipovac, if I'm not mistaken; is that right?
5 A. I think that I said that Mico Lipovac, Micun, known as Micun,
6 approached the column in a location called Greben, where he lives.
7 At least, that is what my father told me. Whether he reached the town, I
8 don't know, because I'm not sure about it.
9 Q. Do you remember that in your earlier statements you said that,
10 because of exhaustion, Saha Uspahic decided not to continue along the road
11 to Visegrad? Do you remember saying that?
12 A. Yes, I do. A bus came along which was transporting other citizens
13 that had been expelled from remote places and it caught up with Saha, who
14 got into the bus. It was packed full, so the bus couldn't take anyone
16 Q. Do you remember, on the basis of the stories that people told you,
17 what day of the week was it when they reached Visegrad?
18 A. No, but I do know that it was the fourth day of the Bajram, the
19 Muslim holiday, what we call the Kurban Bajram.
20 Q. Do you remember that that same day was also a rather important
21 Orthodox holiday?
22 A. I don't know.
23 Q. When you were describing what was happening in Visegrad that day,
24 according to the source that you had, you spoke about two separate
25 incidents. So will you please listen to me and confirm whether what I am
1 saying is right. The first around 1400 hours. The time doesn't matter so
2 much, but just so as to know what we're talking about. That first event,
3 according to what you said, Mitar Vasiljevic, Sredoje Lukic and Milan
4 Lukic take people to Pionirska Street whereas the others were nearby;
5 Djuric, Krsmanovic, Susnjar and Ilic, and at that time they were looted by
6 this first group. And the second incident, which you said occurred in the
7 evening, about 2200 to 2300 hours, when they continued the search and then
8 the house was set on fire. Did I understand you correctly?
9 A. No, you didn't understand me correctly, but if that is what I
10 said, I need to make a correction. Around 1400 hours, they were brought
11 in front of the house and told them that they shouldn't move from that
12 house. They got into the house, and those who were present I listed
13 before, and they were in the immediate vicinity of the house. And about
14 1400 hours, according to what my father said, 1600 hours, yes, they
15 searched the house, took the money and jewellery and everything they took,
16 and then, around 2200 hours - I'm not quite sure about the time - they
17 appeared again and they are the ones that I listed before. They appeared
18 in the house, and after that, they again started the search and chasing
19 people out of that house and forcing them into the other house, next to
20 the creek where this happened.
21 Q. So I think that the only clarification or correction that you
22 made -- but I was relying on the transcript -- now you are saying that
23 there were three incidents, one about 1400 hours, when they reached
24 Pionirska Street, the second at 1600 hours, when they were searched and
25 looted, and the third in the evening, when the search was continued and
1 they were taken to another house where they were set on fire; is that
3 A. Let me make myself clear. You are making -- leading me into a
4 contradiction, which I would like to avoid. I said that around 1400
5 hours, but I'm not quite sure. It could be plus, minus something, because
6 my father didn't tell me explicitly. Anyway, these victims that are on
7 this list, and others, were brought, around 1400 hours, from the
8 Liberation Square - that is, one and a half kilometres away from the site
9 of the event - and they were escorted by Mitar Vasiljevic, carrying an
10 automatic rifle and firing into the air, and they were told that no one
11 may leave the house. And then, after 14 -- after 16, around 1600 hours --
12 you as a lawyer, you must know, you must realise that I can't be specific.
13 I'm saying around 1600 hours. These mentioned people came, they took the
14 money, jewellery, gold and went in the direction of Bikovac, where
15 probably they had an orgy, because when they came again, they were all
16 drunk. And this event, as I said, occurred sometime around 2400 hours.
17 Q. Very well. Now you've explained about the time. I didn't say
18 1600. I said around 1600, and I quite accept what you're telling us, and
19 it is up to this Trial Chamber to establish what exactly happened and
21 When you went on to describe that evening and the taking of the
22 people to the Omeragic house, the house close to the creek where the
23 fire occurred, you explained that your father was among the last, if not
24 the last, to be pushed into that room where some people were already
1 A. Yes. He was the last to enter.
2 Q. You also spoke about the windows in that room. How do you know
3 what those windows looked like?
4 A. I know from what my father said.
5 Q. Very well. And also from what he said when the explosion
6 occurred, the door blew open, and since his legs were not hurt, he got out
7 and headed downhill towards the creek below the house; is that so?
8 A. No. I said he rolled down the slope to the creek, which is about
9 20 or 30 metres away, and that is how he entered a mound of cornstalks.
10 I think I explained exactly what I meant in my previous testimony.
11 Q. Yes, but I was talking about the direction, though. Did he walk
12 for a while and then roll down? But in any event, from the door of the
13 house, he went down to the creek, downhill; is that right?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Did he tell you that he saw anyone at all at that moment?
16 A. No.
17 Q. At this part of the cornstalks, he stayed there all day, didn't
19 A. Yes, hidden behind these stalks.
20 Q. As you told us here in court, you learnt about this event first
21 from Witness VG13.
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You said that this was about ten days or so after the event.
24 A. Yes. Don't hold me to my word whether it was nine, ten or eleven
25 days, or eight days, but ten days or so.
1 Q. As you said, for some 20 years you were a policeman, when you were
2 talking about your professional career.
3 A. Yes. But if you're interested, I can give you the exact date.
4 Q. No. This tells me that you had a lot of experience and that you
5 were an experienced policeman. I think that would be right to say of a
6 man who was in that profession for 20 years.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Do you remember, in view of the fact that this was part of the
9 police duties, do you remember the provisions of Rule 151 of the Law on
10 Criminal Procedure? May I remind you perhaps, if that would help?
11 A. Yes, please do help me. I can't remember it just now.
12 Q. It is a provision of the Law on Criminal Procedure authorising
13 official persons of MUP to take statements and interview witnesses which
14 later cannot be used in evidence in court but are used in the
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Do you remember that?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Pursuant to that provision of the law, did you take a statement
20 from Witness VG13 in the police station in Medzedza?
21 A. No, because I had no opportunity to do it. The witness was
22 wounded and went on for treatment.
23 Q. Let me remind you that you said that you had one conversation with
24 this witness when she -- when the witness said that your immediate family
25 was not involved, that they had left for Olovo, and then two days later
1 the same person told you that your family had died; is that right?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. So we are talking of a period of at least three days of this
4 person being in Medzedza, if not longer, so how can you say, then, that
5 you didn't have time to interview this person for such an important event
6 as the killing of a large number of people?
7 A. Do you realise, Defence counsel, that it was an emergency and
8 a wartime situation? Do you know that? Please answer my question before
9 this Trial Chamber.
10 Q. I will tell you, though I am not here to give answers - you are
11 here to answer questions - but I will tell you that I do know what the
12 situation was like but that, as a lawyer, I really do not understand how a
13 policeman with 20 years of experience who learns of such a terrible
14 criminal offence does not take a statement from a witness who later could
15 have got killed and been unable to testify ever. So I must say that I
16 find that strange on your part, being an experienced policeman.
17 A. Everything that I have said is true.
18 Q. If that is true, do you remember, sir, that in the statement that
19 you made just over a year ago to the investigator of the OTP here from The
20 Hague, you did not mention at all that VG13 had given you any information
21 about this in Medzedza but you said that you learnt about it on the
22 basis of telephone conversations with people from Visegrad; is that right?
23 A. No, it is not right. You have my statement where this witness is
25 Q. I'm asking you very specifically: In your statement to the
1 investigator, is it true that you said that you learnt about the event
2 from telephone conversations with people in Visegrad and not from this
3 witness, whom you did not mention at all in your statement as a source of
4 information about this event?
5 A. I did not -- it is not correct that I said that I learnt by
6 telephone. If I did say so, there's a correction. I learnt for the first
7 time about this event from the witness, using this number that you have
9 Q. Will you agree with me that it was extremely important to tell the
10 investigator whom you had learnt about such an event from?
11 A. Yes. Every event is very important for the investigation and the
12 Court, every detail, but I must express a reservation: If I did not tell
13 the investigator during the last statement in Sarajevo, let them look for
14 my first statement which I made to the investigator. I think that this
15 witness number 13 is mentioned.
16 Q. How many times did you give statements to the investigator of the
18 A. I'm not sure whether it was twice or three times. I don't know
20 Q. Are you including statements to the MUP in Bosnia-Herzegovina or
21 only the investigator from The Hague?
22 A. I mean the investigator from The Hague.
23 Q. Let me remind you. I'm referring to your statement of May 2000
24 and the investigator is Ib Jul Hansen. Do you remember making a statement
25 for him?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Allow me to read a part of that statement to refresh your memory,
3 and it refers to what we have just discussed. You said, and I quote:
4 "The telephone lines between the town and Medzedza were open for
5 at least another month after I had left Visegrad. Occasionally I spoke to
6 relatives in Visegrad, not openly, because I suspected that the Serbs were
7 listening in to the telephone conversations; however, in one way or
8 another I was informed about the situation over there. They told me about
9 a fire in a house in Pionirska Street on the 13th or 14th of June, 1992,
10 when 64 people died. The owner of the house was Adem Omeragic. My
11 father --" I won't mention his name for your protection, and some other --
12 "and a number of others survived this. I know of another two survivors."
13 And the names are given, and these are witnesses 13 and 18. And
14 you know very well who they are. And let me go on:
15 "I was told that the fire or explosion had occurred because fire
16 was opened at the house from a hand-held rocket launcher. My father also
17 told me who the people who did this were, and they were," and you then go
18 on to mention the names.
19 Do you remember giving such a statement to investigator Hansen?
20 A. Yes. Yes, but information can be obtained in one way or another;
21 I think that is quite clear. You are a lawyer, so you must know how one
22 gets information.
23 Q. So this is what you said in that statement, and in that statement
24 you did not mention a conversation with Witness VG13 in Medzedza or
25 anything like that.
1 A. Maybe you left that out, but that is why I'm here today.
2 Q. Yes, that is right, but for the credibility of a statement of a
3 witness, it is very important what he said and when, and that is why I'm
4 asking you these questions.
5 A. Yes, sir, but it's ten years since I left my home. I hardly know
6 my own name any more. And let me add that in this war I lost nine close
7 relatives, Mr. Defence Counsel.
8 Q. Sir, believe me that I'm fully conscious of the situation and I am
9 very sorry that you have lost so many members of your family. I
10 commiserate. That is very unfortunate and sad. But you must also
11 understand that, regardless of that, it is very important to tell the
12 truth, the whole truth, so that the real culprits, if that is possible, be
13 brought before justice. That is the aim of the Trial Chamber, of the
14 Tribunal, and me as Defence counsel, and I hope that you, as a man who
15 dealt with this kind of thing, understand that, although the period which
16 was for you personally very difficult will be able to understand our
17 endeavours and why, precisely why we were trying to get at the truth.
18 A. Yes, that's right.
19 Q. Sir, when you spoke about the persons who were in the column
20 moving towards Visegrad that day [Technical difficulty], members of your
21 immediate and larger family, you said that in addition to them, [Technical
22 difficulty] whom you knew and that you met them often and came into
23 contact with them often, [Technical difficulty] the statement of your
24 interview, the minutes of your interview. Can you remember who these
25 other people were? And I think you have a list in front of you with their
2 A. Yes, I can tell you.
3 JUDGE HUNT: One moment. We're getting French as well as English
4 at the moment. I'm not sure -- it's not continuous, but it's certainly
5 coming in and out often. Very pleasant to hear, but confusing.
6 A. I have two microphones.
7 JUDGE HUNT: No, no.
8 A. -- Mr. President, if it's my fault. Shall we move one of them?
9 JUDGE HUNT: No, sir. That is to make sure they catch you no
10 matter which way you're looking. It's not your microphone, but let's
11 proceed and see if it's fixed, Mr. Domazet. I'm sorry, the witness was
12 about to start answering. He said, "Yes, I can tell you ..."
13 You proceed now, sir. Thank you.
14 A. The victims, I think that you have a list of their names. Do you
15 want me to give you their names and surnames? And I can do so.
16 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Yes. I don't think there would be any harm in you giving us the
18 names of the people who weren't part of your family whom you mentioned and
19 who are on the list and who you say you knew and met.
20 A. Yes. Redzo Memisevic and Fazila Memisevic, they are neighbours of
21 mine from the same village. Number 36, victim number 36, Mule Ajanovic,
22 is also a neighbour, a lady neighbour of mine from my village. Kada Sehic
23 and Faruk Sehic, from the village of Musici. My sister and my sister's
24 son. Then there was Velic.
25 Q. I apologise for interrupting, sir. I think you already told us
1 that. You told us those names already and you told us during your
2 testimony and examination. But you spoke about some others as well.
3 A. Defence Counsel, please, may I take it in order and clear this up.
4 That's why I'm here. Nurka Velic, Tima Velic from Sase. Because the
5 proceedings were interrupted, there was a correction made to the surname
6 of the victims under number 48 and 49 and 50. It was not Jasarevic. That
7 was not the surname. It was [redacted]. And there was one person omitted,
8 that is to say, two victims which were left out of the list, with no
9 number. They would be after -- they would be number 52 and 53. And one
10 of these people, the surname is [redacted], the first name is Rabija. The
11 number is 52, she is under number 52. And number 53 is Ajnija Delija.
12 That is a woman. Ajnija Delija, and I'd like that to be entered into the
13 record with the number of victims.
14 Q. The list you've been reading from, which is Exhibit P147, did you
15 compile the list or was it compiled according to what you said or were you
16 given it by the Prosecution?
17 A. No. This was given to me by the Prosecution.
18 Q. Speaking about individuals under 48, 49, and 50, you said there
19 was an error in their surname. When did you discover that error?
20 A. Just when the proceedings were interrupted last time.
21 Q. In view of the fact that after the interruption, after your
22 testimony was interrupted, you had contacts with other witnesses. Perhaps
23 some of those witnesses told you about that change, or did you really
24 notice it yourself and notice that it was -- that they were other names?
25 A. No, none of the other witnesses told me, because I know each of
1 these individuals personally.
2 Q. So number 48 is [redacted]; is that right?
3 A. Yes, from the village of Sase. And if the President of the Court
4 will allow me, may I add one more name to this list, which I have just
5 remembered? The person's name is Jasarevic. I don't know the first name
6 exactly, but I think her name was Razija, and she joined the column later,
7 or them. And she disappeared as of that date. All trace of her is lost.
8 She was Zarfa Jasarevic. She was between the ages -- she might have been
9 50 or 55.
10 Q. Sir, there was one Jasarevic, and that is the one you've just told
11 us about. The others aren't Jasarevic but [redacted]; is that right?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. From what I understood, you knew [redacted] personally.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Do you know anything more about him, any particulars; where he
16 worked, where he lived, who he lived with, things like that?
24 Q. No. You've told us enough, so you know him well and you know that
25 his wife survived and that she is still living; is that right?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. So according to you, she wasn't in Pionirska Street on that
3 particular critical day.
4 A. No.
5 Q. Although you were quite specific in saying that there was only one
6 Jasarevic, the man you just remember -- the person you just remembered,
7 can I just ask you if there was anybody called (redacted)
10 (redacted) except that person Zarfa, the last one, under number 54, the
12 Q. Referring to the statement you gave to the investigator of the
13 Prosecution, Mr. Hansen, and the introductory part that I read out to you
14 which you said was correct and true, that you did in fact say that, you
15 gave us an explanation with respect to how you learnt about this, but you
16 didn't tell me why you mentioned a hand-held rocket launcher as the way in
17 which the fire was created. And here, in this court, you described this
18 in quite a different way.
19 A. According to what my father said. My father said that it was
20 probably a hand-held rocket launcher, which was seen at 2400 hours in a
21 closed room with no light. But as he was an elderly person and had
22 experienced two world wars, he probably knew that it was a strong weapon
23 of great destructive power, and according to what he said, he thought it
24 was a hand-held rocket launcher, that that would correspond to the type of
25 weapon used.
1 Q. Yes. Your father did make a statement. It was recorded. I hope
2 we shall see that, a recording of that. But thank you anyway. We have no
3 further questions for you.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Who is taking the re-examination?
5 Re-examined by Ms. Bauer
6 Q. One question, VG61: Were you specifically asked by the
7 investigator about any conversations with the surviving victims, VG13, the
8 other surviving victim being VG18?
9 A. No. No.
10 Q. So you were only specifically asked to recount what your father
11 told you; is this correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Thank you, VG61.
14 MS. BAUER: That would conclude the re-examination. However, I
15 would like to officially tender the videotape. A clip of it was shown
16 last Wednesday. And the transcripts in English and B/C/S into evidence,
17 which is Prosecution Exhibits marked 145 is the videotape, 146.1 the
18 English translation, 146.2 the B/C/S translation, all being handed out
19 just now.
20 JUDGE HUNT: Is there any objection to this, Mr. Domazet?
21 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour, no objection. But
22 in view of the answers given by the witness, I think that it would be
23 necessary for the Prosecution to agree and confirm the fact that the
24 witness, in a statement to investigator Hansen, made no mention of his
25 talk with Witness VG13 and that, in the way that I described, he did
1 testify, without having to tender that statement of his into evidence as
2 an exhibit.
3 MS. BAUER: We can agree that it is not recorded in the statement.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you very much. Well, now, Exhibits 146.1 and
5 146.2, with the prefix P, are admitted and they are under seal. What
6 about the video? I don't remember, did that identify anybody?
7 MS. BAUER: It's 145. A clip was apparently, according to the
8 record - I was not in court unfortunately, so I didn't see it - but a clip
9 was shown and I think the tape, the original tape, is with the Court.
10 JUDGE HUNT: It was definitely shown. My only concern was, was it
11 shown in private session? We can look it up in the transcript.
12 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour --
13 JUDGE HUNT: Yes.
14 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I may, I would like
15 to recall that we just saw the first ten seconds of that tape, for the
16 witness to identify his father, which he did do, and after that, we
17 agreed that the video clip be shown after this examination, so that it was
18 not shown, in fact, in its entirety.
19 JUDGE HUNT: But that part which was shown clearly must have been
20 shown in private session, because it would have identified the witness.
21 Well, then it too will be under seal. It's Exhibit P145. But what about
22 showing us the whole of it? I must say, unless it's of some importance -
23 and very few videos have been of any importance so far - we might be able
24 to miss that. It's all very well to show them because --
25 MS. BAUER: I think basically everything that we needed to be
1 recorded is recorded in the transcript, so I mean if Your Honours don't
2 wish to see it, I don't think that we insist on watching the whole video
3 in court.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Very well, then. We will note that the first ten
5 seconds was shown. That's the only part which is relevant, which
6 identifies the witness's father, and we don't need to have regard to the
7 rest of it.
8 Is there some problem with that, Mr. Domazet?
9 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think that regardless
10 of the fact that we do indeed have a transcript, both in English and
11 B/C/S, of that interview, that it would be a good idea - it's not a long
12 one, some ten minutes perhaps - to show it. For the Court to be able to
13 assess what the witness has said, I think that would be necessary. And
14 that is the -- I think that was Mr. Groome's proposal too, but we put it
15 off for later.
16 JUDGE HUNT: I would guess that the video does not have an English
17 sound track; is that so?
18 MS. BAUER: That's correct. There is an English transcript of
19 the video.
20 JUDGE HUNT: That's what we have in Exhibit 146, isn't it?
21 MS. BAUER: Yes, exactly. And I think the whole transcript of the
22 whole videotape.
23 JUDGE HUNT: I find it very difficult to read a transcript and to
24 watch a video at the same time, which means in the end that the
25 interpreters are going to have to give us an interpretation. Do you know
1 about the length of time? Was ten minutes a fair estimate?
2 MS. BAUER: It could be about right. I mean, I think the whole
3 transcript is reflected, the whole transcript of his interview about the
4 incidents, but I personally must confess I haven't stopped it and I don't
5 have a copy here now to see whether there is an indication of timing on
7 JUDGE HUNT: Well, perhaps we ask the booth whether they feel
8 prepared to, with the assistance of the transcript, interpret --
9 THE INTERPRETER: Yes, if we have a transcript, if we're given a
10 copy of the transcript, please.
11 JUDGE HUNT: Have you got a copy, a spare copy?
12 MS. BAUER: Your Honours, we gave our spare copy to the Court
14 JUDGE HUNT: We'll let them have the exhibit. It's very easy.
15 We've got copies. And has the video booth got the tape? And we will have
16 to go into private session for the purposes of hearing it.
17 Private session, please.
18 [Private session]
13 Pages 891 to 903 – redacted – private session.
4 [Open session]
5 JUDGE HUNT: We're now in public session. The estimate was a
6 little out, I'm afraid, Mr. Domazet, but thank you.
7 Thank you also to the people in the booth and the court reporters
8 for staying on.
9 Well, sir, that concludes your part in these proceedings. We're
10 very grateful to you to having come and for the evidence which you have
11 given. You are now free to leave.
12 We will adjourn now and resume again at 5 to 12.00.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I may, Mr. President. I have a
14 request, if I may. Could I ask you, Your Honours, the Defence counsel,
15 and the accused, if they know, and they know where the graves are, to help
16 me to bury my family, if I could find a bone somewhere, to bury my family
17 and friends. That's all for now, thank you.
18 JUDGE HUNT: Sir, that is something which is often raised here in
19 court. I am afraid that the Tribunal generally is unable to assist you.
20 There is, of course, a great deal of information being given to us. We
21 have the next witness -- I'm sorry, the next witness but one has had a
22 lot to do with finding bodies, but I'm sure that so far as the Prosecution
23 is concerned, which has access to that material, they will give you what
24 they have, but I don't think that it is appropriate to call upon the
25 Defence in the trial. We have no basis upon which we could say that they
1 know the answer to it. To do otherwise would be to assume their guilt,
2 which would not be proper for us. But I hope, sir, that you find the
3 bodies of your family. As I say, you are now free to leave and we will
5 --- Recess taken at 11.27 a.m.
6 --- On resuming at 11.56 a.m.
7 [The witness entered court]
8 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, Mr. Ossogo.
9 Please stand up, sir. Would you take the solemn declaration in
10 the document which the Court usher is showing you.
11 WITNESS: WITNESS VG21
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
14 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
15 JUDGE HUNT: Sit down, please, sir.
16 Mr. Ossogo.
17 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. The next
18 witness is witness who will have the pseudonym VG21.
19 JUDGE HUNT: Have you got a pseudonym sheet for him?
20 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President; document number
21 80, Prosecution document 80.
22 JUDGE HUNT: That will be Exhibit P80, 8-0, and it will be under
24 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
25 Examined by Mr. Ossogo:
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Q. [Interpretation] Witness VG21, the piece of paper that you have
2 before you contains some information. Is the information, the
3 particulars, correct on the piece of paper?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. I should just like to tell you that any information concerning
6 family ties should not be mentioned in the course of your testimony and
7 the relationship that links -- you can tell us the relationship that links
8 you to those persons, but don't say their names, please. Do you
10 A. Yes, I do. I understand, yes.
11 Q. The same thing applies to the village that is mentioned at the end
12 of the piece of paper. You will just say, "A," when you refer to the
13 village in the course of your testimony.
14 A. Yes, right.
15 Q. In 1992, Witness VG21, you lived in Visegrad; is that right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. In village A; is that correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And you completed your compulsory military service in the JNA in
21 A. Yes, that's right.
22 Q. Up until what year? How long did you do your military service
23 for? Until when?
24 A. From 1965 to 1967.
25 Q. You were a soldier in the Bosnia-Herzegovina army in 1992; is that
2 A. Yes, that's right.
3 Q. In 1992, did you leave Visegrad?
4 A. Yes, I did.
5 Q. What month was that, precisely?
6 A. On the 19th of April, 1992. That is to say, the 19th of May. I
7 apologise. I misspoke. The 19th of May.
8 Q. Did you leave Visegrad before the month of May, 1992?
9 A. Yes, I did. I left when the Uzice Corps arrived. I went off in
10 the direction of Gorazde before the Uzice Corps entered, and that was in
11 April, the 14th of April.
12 Q. Can you tell us why you left the town of Visegrad on the 14th of
13 April, 1992?
14 A. Because it was rumoured that the Uzice Corps was coming and
15 entering the town of Visegrad. However, the man who released the water,
16 for security reasons I left, not knowing what was going to happen in that
17 town of ours, the town of Visegrad.
18 Q. You said the man who released the water. Which man?
19 A. His name was Murat Sabanovic.
20 Q. And who released what water?
21 A. Yes. It was the lake of the hydro electric power plant of
22 Visegrad and it was on the river Drina.
23 Q. Was it because you were afraid of flooding, that the city would be
24 flooded? Is that why you left?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. How long did you stay away for?
2 A. I was absent for nine days.
3 Q. En route, did you come across any checkpoints or control points,
4 if you prefer?
5 A. You mean when I was leaving or when I returned? On my way back or
6 on my way out?
7 Q. Going away and coming back nine days later.
8 A. When I left, there were no barricades or checkpoints until
9 Gorazde, and upon my return, when the Uzice Corps had entered, I think it
10 was the 14th of April, perhaps a day before or a day afterwards - I can't
11 quite remember the date at which the corps entered Visegrad precisely -
12 but nine days later, the Uzice Corps had set up entrance controls or
13 checkpoints, checkpoints at the entrance to the town of Visegrad, in
14 different places, at different entrances, 200 metres apart or half a
15 kilometre or one kilometre apart, at all the junctions leading into town,
16 into the settlement, or exits from the settlements, including the town of
17 Visegrad itself. In the town itself, at every 200 metres, there were
18 checkpoints. Your personal documents were checked and people were checked
19 as well.
20 Q. May we take it, then, that these checkpoints were placed when you
21 left and when you returned?
22 A. I said I saw checkpoints set up on my journey back from Gorazde to
24 Q. Were you yourself checked? Did they search you?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. What did this control or check consist of?
2 A. It was the legal arm of the Yugoslav People's Army, regular
3 soldiers, in the presence of the reserve force, the reserve units.
4 Whether they were paramilitary or whether they were the legal units
5 of the legal army, I'm not sure. They were called the reservists.
6 Q. To go back to the distinction that you make between regular
7 soldiers and reservists, how were the other people checked and how was the
8 control effected of the other people, if you happened to see?
9 A. Ramps were set up, manned by several soldiers or a group of
10 soldiers, and they would stop people, stop the people coming back,
11 pedestrians or cars, people coming in on foot or by car. They would be
12 stopped at these checkpoints and they asked them to show their ID
13 documents, and if anybody had any weapons, ranging from knives to rifles,
14 they asked people whether they were armed, and anything they suspected
15 might be interesting for military purposes and strategy. If they thought
16 this was so, they would confiscate these items. If they found a knife on
17 someone or a pistol on someone or binoculars or various other equipment,
18 they would confiscate it.
19 Q. At that particular time, was there a distinction between -- did
20 they distinguish between the people they checked and controlled based on
21 ethnicity, for example?
22 A. Yes. They only did this on an ethnic basis. They searched the
23 Bosniak population mostly, of the Muslim faith.
24 Q. How were the soldiers dressed, the ones you mentioned, the ones
25 who manned the checkpoints and did the checking? How were they
2 A. They wore the uniform, the olive-green/grey uniform of the former
3 Yugoslav People's Army, that kind of uniform, and everything that went
4 with it, and also the kind of uniform that regular soldiers had and
5 everything that went with it.
6 Q. You also mentioned reservists. Did they wear the same type of
8 A. Yes, they did, the only difference being that the reservists could
9 be distinguished from the others, from the regular soldiers of the JNA.
10 They didn't have caps of any kind. They didn't have the Tito-type caps
11 and emblems on their heads. That was the difference. And their uniforms
12 were like the ones that regular soldiers had, the soldiers serving the
13 former army, the JNA. The uniform that the reservists had could be noted
14 for its -- whether it was clean or whether it was dirty, whether -- that
15 is to say, you could tell who were irregular soldiers who had joined the
16 reservists. Their uniforms tended to be dirty and torn, so you could
17 notice that some of these uniforms were dirty and torn as opposed to the
18 other clean ones. They were also not well kept, not combed. They had
19 beards, they weren't clean-shaven, and their conduct was different as
20 well. They behaved differently towards the people they were checking.
21 Their demeanour was different. They would curse the people, they would
22 swear, and there was a lot of mistreatment.
23 Q. Could you give us some examples of that mistreatment that you just
25 A. Yes, I can. They would usually swear, curse their balija mothers
1 or Turkish mothers and use derogatory terms. And they would ask, "Where
2 is Murat and what do you think is going to happen to you now?" They would
3 say that kind of thing.
4 Q. Can you tell us what those insults meant, swearing your balija
5 mother and your Turkish mother? Did that signify anything in particular?
6 A. Yes. Cursing balijas is a sort of extreme -- something extreme or
7 a special crime, like we used to use the terms "Chetnik" or "Ustasha,"
8 that kind of meaning. Because there were quite a lot of them, a lot of
9 them who personally knew the man whose name and surname -- that is to say,
10 they would know people by their first and last names but they would
11 nonetheless refer to them as balijas or Turks or that kind of thing.
12 Q. When you came back after spending nine days in Gorazde, when you
13 came back to your village, was your property intact or had anybody been to
14 your house?
15 A. When I returned from Gorazde, what I found was the house in which
16 I live, it was intact. Nobody had touched it. There were no changes. It
17 was in the same state as I had left it in.
18 Q. When you were in your house after your return, did a group of
19 soldiers come and visit you?
20 A. Yes. When I went into the house - I can't say exactly, but about
21 20 minutes later or half an hour later maybe, a patrol of the Yugoslav
22 People's Army came in with four soldiers, and they were stationed in the
23 barracks at Uzamnica, the Uzamnica barracks under the command of Dragan
24 Burandzic, the commander of that particular unit. The soldiers who came
25 to search my house at first behaved decently; their conduct was proper.
1 They searched my house and the premises. They did not find anything --
2 any of the kinds of things that they were looking for, or asked me if I
3 had, such as weapons or -- actually, they weren't looking for anything
4 else. That's what they were looking for, just weapons. They did ask me
5 whom I had, who was in the house with me and who my family were, what
6 family members I had. I told them that my wife and daughter were with me,
7 and that's all I had to do with those soldiers. I had no problems any
8 more that day with the soldiers.
9 I'm thinking about the people who came from the barracks, the
10 Uzamnica barracks. Not half an hour went by after that when an army
11 patrol came by again. They didn't introduce themselves, say who they
12 were, but there were two of them. They were very nicely dressed, and
13 three other men were reservists. And I recognised a neighbour of mine who
14 also mistreated me in the presence of those five soldiers. He was
15 looking -- he wanted me -- he was looking for a pistol or a rifle that I
16 might have, and ammunition. They searched the house, ransacking it,
17 looking everywhere, just like the group before them did. They found
18 nothing. He saw a picture I had on the wall, and it was a photograph of
19 Josip Broz, Tito. He said, "Do you still believe --" and I apologise for
20 using these words -- "in this shit? And fuck you if you do." He took the
21 photograph and smashed it right in front of my very eyes in my own home,
22 and he said that I could forfeit my head for this.
23 Q. Yes. Just one moment, please, Witness VG21. Did the soldiers
24 take any property that belonged to you, movable goods or not, that second
25 group that came half an hour after the first group?
1 A. No. The third group did. After that, the next day, they came
2 again. They would spend half an hour, sometimes more, sometimes less.
3 You didn't know who was coming after that, who was looking for what, and
4 if you got your house in order, if you tidied up, if they found your house
5 tidy, they would ransack it even more. If your house wasn't all tidy and
6 if you had left it in a shambles, the way it was when they ransacked it,
7 they would upset you less; they would do less. I was there, actually. It
8 was only if they took a liking to something or saw some cigarettes or some
9 technical goods, for example, that they could take off with them and
10 nobody would notice, then they took those, some carpentry equipment.
11 Because I had my tools, my carpentry tools, and they took all my tools
12 with them. They took anything they liked, they took a fancy to.
13 Q. You said they took everything. Can you tell us what they took,
14 apart from your carpentry tools?
15 A. They took a carton of cigarettes belonging to my son, they took
16 three machines, carpentry machines, because he was a carpenter, had done
17 his training in Visegrad; they took my own tools from my vehicle, the
18 tools I used every day.
19 Q. When did the Uzice Corps leave Visegrad?
20 A. As far as I know and am able to remember, I think it was the 19th
21 of May, in the evening, or in the night between the 18th and 19th of May,
22 as far as I remember, but possibly it could have been a day earlier or a
23 day later, give or take a day or two.
24 Q. After the departure of the Uzice Corps, did you notice any
25 paramilitary units in your area?
1 A. Yes. Those groups were stationed, that is to say, they were put
2 up at the new Visegrad hotel.
3 Q. Which group are you referring to?
4 A. I'm thinking of the paramilitary groups, the White Eagles or
5 Seselj's men or Arkan's men.
6 Q. Were they housed in a particular building, the White Eagles, for
8 A. It depended.
9 Q. That is to say, were they in different uniforms?
10 A. Yes. They wore civilian uniforms, the olive-green/grey uniforms,
11 they had caps, the French beret type of cap, they had white coats on,
12 white overalls. They were dressed differently. Some had long coats on,
13 winter coats on, military boots but civilian clothing. So there were all
14 kinds of combinations and different types of uniforms. Those paramilitary
15 units wore all sorts of different clothing.
16 Q. Were they armed?
17 A. Yes. Some of them had rifles, pistols, and a bomb or two, a
18 grenade or two.
19 Q. Your brother-in-law, was he the object of a visit by one of these
20 groups? Did they visit your brother-in-law?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Which group went to your brother-in-law's?
23 A. It was the White Eagles group belonging to Dragan Lukic.
24 Q. When they went to see him, did they do anything in particular, as
25 far as you know?
1 A. Yes, they did. Dragan Lukic took a Passat type car from Dzemo
2 Zukic. Dzemo Zukic was the owner of the vehicle. And he drove it to the
3 NK22 [as interpreted], stopped, and below his house he called him out by
4 name. NK [as interpreted] responded and came down to below the house. He
5 talked to Dragan Lukic, who asked him, first of all, how he was, whether
6 he had any problems, and then he asked him where his son was. I don't
7 know what he answered to that, but that conversation lasted some 10 to 20
8 minutes perhaps. And Dragan Lukic offered VG22 two litres of cognac, a
9 kilo of sugar, or perhaps more, sugar cubes, and some other staples.
10 Q. May I stop you there for just a moment, Witness, please. We'll go
11 back to that later on, to that visit by the White Eagles to your
12 brother-in-law, but you said that this group was led by Dragan Lukic; is
13 that right?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And your brother-in-law, did he know this Dragan Lukic?
16 A. He did.
17 Q. How did he know him?
18 A. VG22 had a sister, married, in Lukic's village, called Rujiste.
19 Q. Your brother-in-law -- is VG22 your brother-in-law, in fact? Will
20 you look at the piece of paper closely, please, the one you have in front
21 of you.
22 A. No. No. That's a mistake. He's my sister-in-law --
23 brother-in-law. My sister is married to VG22.
24 JUDGE HUNT: I'm afraid, Mr. Ossogo, this is a problem with the
25 B/C/S language. Brothers-in-law seems to be a very general phrase which
1 covers a great number of different relationships. But we've now got it
2 that he is the, as I understand it, the husband of his sister-in-law.
3 That may not be right, but you had better just -- if you need to, you
4 better explore it a little bit further and try to avoid the expression
5 "brothers-in-law," because it has such a different meaning.
6 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President. Thank you.
7 Q. Witness, this piece of paper has a name, next to which we have
8 said that it was his brother-in-law.
9 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Perhaps we can proceed in this way
10 and then he will be less confused, rather than using the various
11 indications that we have given him. That can cause more confusion. I
12 think he found his way a moment ago, he got it right.
13 Can we continue, Mr. President? Thank you.
14 Q. VG21, you were telling us the incident that occurred at your
15 brother-in-law's house, and you were saying that Dragan Lukic had taken a
16 certain number of goods, and you were able to identify this brother-in-law
17 because there was an error a moment ago regarding the use of the
18 pseudonym. So let's go back now to Dragan Lukic himself. You have
19 confirmed that he was the one who led the paramilitary group. Can you
20 confirm that?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Do you know Milan Lukic?
23 A. No. I saw him only through the curtain of VG22. I was sitting in
24 his house and I was watching him through the window while they were
25 talking outside, and I hadn't known him before then. And that was the
1 first time for me to see him and hear this Dragan Lukic.
2 Q. I asked you whether you knew Milan Lukic, not Dragan Lukic.
3 A. I apologise. That's a mistake. Yes, it was Dragan Lukic, not
4 Milan Lukic.
5 Q. Let me repeat the question. Do you know Mr. Milan Lukic?
6 A. I know of the name, but I know Sredoje Lukic. I really don't know
7 Milan Lukic.
8 Q. And how did you know Sredoje Lukic?
9 A. I know Sredoje because he was a policeman in the town of
10 Visegrad. He performed policemen's duties in Visegrad.
11 Q. Was he present? Was he one of the paramilitary group that you
12 referred to?
13 A. Yes, he was present in the paramilitary units I have mentioned.
14 But just on this occasion, while Dragan Lukic was talking to VG22, I
15 didn't see him. He wasn't there.
16 Q. Talking about VG22, you are really referring to your
17 brother-in-law, aren't you, or someone else?
18 A. Yes. I'm talking about VG22. He is my brother-in-law.
19 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] You're right, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE HUNT: But is it important in this case? If it is, you had
21 better pursue it, but I suggest we get on to the next matter.
22 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Quite, Mr. President, if you agree.
23 Q. VG21, after all these events that occurred in your
24 brother-in-law's house, did you leave your village?
25 A. Yes, I left. I don't know. I think it was the 19th of May, in
1 the morning, together with VG22.
2 Q. Where did you go?
3 A. I left my own settlement in the direction of Visegrad. I crossed
4 the bridge on the Drina, not knowing myself where I should go. After
5 everything that had happened that evening in my settlement, where five or
6 six men had gone missing and where Zukic lady was killed -- I can't
7 remember her first name now. She was found in the morning, dead, in her
8 house. She was the wife of Dzemo Zukic. And I went downstream along the
9 Drina in the direction of the town of Zepa because there was no
10 organisation. No one didn't know who to go to or where one would be safe
11 and where one could save one's life.
12 Q. So you went to the village of Zepa?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Were you alone?
15 A. I was the only one of my family, but with me was VG22, his son,
16 and another neighbour from my village.
17 Q. When you reached Zepa, what did you do?
18 A. I went to my family, because that was where I was born. I was
19 born in Zepa. For the first few days we had no duties or anything in
20 particular to do. Life consisted of struggling for survival and finding
21 enough food to live, for among my immediate family, and I mean my
22 brothers, mother and father, there was no one in the village of Zepa at
23 that point in time, or, rather, the village's name is Pripecak, so that
24 for a couple of days we didn't do anything in particular. There wasn't
25 much shelling. Occasionally there would be a shell or two or some
1 shooting coming from a place called Stolovaca.
2 Q. During your stay in Zepa, did you at a certain point in time start
3 hauling bodies out of the Drina River?
4 A. Yes. This --
5 Q. Which river?
6 A. From the River Drina or the lake of Drina.
7 Q. When was this, if you can remember, roughly?
8 A. Well, approximately this was the first bodies that appeared,
9 appeared in June, from the 6th of June onwards. From the 12th, their
10 number increased; there were more bodies on the Drina Lake. They came in
11 larger groups from the 12th of June.
12 Q. Could you tell us, either approximately or precisely, where you
13 pulled out those bodies? Could you show it to us on a map?
14 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Could I ask the usher for his
16 A. Yes, certainly. Whenever you wish.
17 JUDGE HUNT: Is there any issue about this, Mr. Ossogo? Do we
18 need to show it on a map? There was no challenge to the evidence of the
19 previous witness about where the bodies were pulled out from.
20 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] No, indeed, Mr. President. But the
21 map was not used, and it is a complement to the evidence provided in
22 photographs through a previous witness and it allows us to establish the
23 distance from where the points were retrieved to the town of Visegrad,
24 where the bodies were coming from that were thrown into the river. These
25 are just a few additional elements.
1 JUDGE HUNT: Very well.
2 The witness can't stand up, you realise, because if he does, he
3 loses his facial distortion. That's why I'm curious as to why we have to
4 block everybody's view of this big map. There's a piece of paper floating
5 around. Is this a miniature of the map? I suggest we use that. The
6 witness can show it on the ELMO, and then when the usher has got a moment
7 he can take that down so that the interpreters can see what is going on.
8 THE REGISTRAR: May I confirm that this is number 149, please.
9 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] It is indeed 149, Mr. President. The
10 copy of the map is not clear because it's not in colour, so we're going to
11 use this last document to be quite sure.
12 Q. VG21, can you see this map?
13 A. Yes, I see the map, but I can't really see. I need to look at it
14 a little more closely. The Drina River, I do.
15 Q. Could you point, please, to the river.
16 A. Starting from -- [indicates]
17 Q. Yes. Could you pinpoint Visegrad, please, from the river?
18 A. Yes, I can.
19 Q. Could you point to, for the benefit of the Chamber, the area at
20 which you retrieved the bodies in the region of Zepa.
21 A. I can't see very well. I don't have my glasses. But I don't find
22 the map very clear. I'm sorry, I wear glasses, but I don't find the map
24 Q. You showed us the river a moment ago, going upstream.
25 A. Slap, Slap.
1 Q. Please look at the point. Show us on the ELMO, please.
2 A. Slap. Pripecak. So it's here. This is the Zepa. Just a
3 moment, please. I'll find it easier on this one. Zepa. Here's the River
4 Zepa. Zepa.
5 Q. VG21, this Zepa River, does it flow into the Drina? It joins the
6 Drina some place, at the spot you showed us?
7 A. Yes. The Zepa flows into the Drina. Yes, here, just here. Yes.
8 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] That's sufficient, thank you.
9 Q. How much time did you spend in Zepa or, more precisely, in Slap,
10 the place you indicated a moment ago?
11 A. I would go to Slap maybe twice a week to retrieve the bodies from
12 the lake and from the Drina River. Two, three times a week, sometimes not
13 once a week, depending on when I was free. When I was free, I would go
14 almost every day; otherwise, two to three times a week.
15 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Ossogo, do you want this document, this map, into
16 evidence? It's numbered 149. It's not yet in evidence.
17 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President, quite. We would
18 like to tender this document as an exhibit, with the number you have just
20 JUDGE HUNT: Any objection, Mr. Domazet?
21 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE HUNT: That will be Exhibit P149.
23 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
24 Q. In what condition were the bodies that you retrieved from the
1 A. The bodies that we retrieved from the Drina Lake were in varying
2 stages of decomposition. Some were whole, intact, some were without
3 heads, without clothing, others were with clothing; younger people, older
4 people, and even children.
5 Q. Did you find bodies which were mutilated or that had suffered
7 A. Yes. We retrieved bodies which had parts of noses cut off, ears,
8 women with their breasts cut off, then legs tied, naked, both arms slung
9 through the breasts and decomposing. It's indescribable. Some were
10 killed with knives, sledge hammers. I don't know what to say. There were
11 killings of all kind. But in the beginning, bodies mostly arrived that
12 were with a nose cut off, ear cut off, hit with a hammer or a knife.
13 There were few killed with firearms during the first few days.
14 Q. Among those bodies, did you find two bodies that were like
15 crucified on a piece of wood?
16 A. Yes, there were bodies on a door. On one side of the door, a man
17 was nailed to the door and, on the other, a woman. But I personally did
18 not see this, but I was told about this by the person who was in charge of
19 the exhumation or identification of those bodies.
20 Q. Who was that person who was in charge of the operation?
21 JUDGE HUNT: Is he a witness or a protected witness? Is the
22 person you seek to obtain from the witness, is he a protected witness?
23 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] No, not protected, not protected.
24 Q. Let me repeat the question, VG21. Who was the person who was in
25 charge of this operation?
1 A. As far as I understand, I am allowed to give the first and last
2 names of the people who were in charge. It was [redacted], also Hamed,
3 I can't just now recollect. Hamed, nicknamed Hodza, was it Bulatovic or
4 -- but I think he had a different surname.
5 Q. He was in charge of doing what? What did [redacted] have as his
7 A. These two men, with the assistance of the rest of the population
8 of the village of Slap, Pripecak, Zepa, who were not obliged to do work
9 duty or who did not have military duties would assist these two men almost
10 daily, three to four men, maybe more, more out of curiosity, for people to
11 be able to recognise relatives.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Ossogo, both of you have used the name of a
13 protected witness, and it will be redacted, but please, when we return,
14 make sure that you use the pseudonym.
15 It's quite clear that we will not finish today's evidence today.
16 MR. OSSOGO: Which one, Mr. President?
17 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
18 JUDGE HUNT: He is the sixth name in the list of protected
19 witnesses that I've got here. But you can check it during the lunch
20 hour. I'm just coming to the point, though, that we are not going to
21 finish the evidence of Mr. Masovic today and we propose to keep sitting
22 tomorrow to take his evidence. At the moment there's nothing listed for
24 Very well. We'll adjourn now until 2.30.
25 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.01 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.30 p.m.
2 JUDGE HUNT: I checked through the transcript, and (redacted) did
3 give evidence under his own name. So I'm sorry. I'm becoming a little
4 bit edgy about the number of these protected witnesses, but it's perfectly
5 all right.
6 You proceed, Mr. Ossogo.
7 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. The remark
8 that I wanted to make, and you yourself noted this, was the one you have
9 just made yourself, so we can continue.
10 Q. Witness VG21, just a few more questions. When you were pulling
11 out the bodies from the river, you distinguished between -- could you
12 distinguish between the men and the women, the male and the female bodies
13 that you pulled out?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And you separated the bodies. Did you put them in different
16 graves, depending on the sex? Did you separate the men from the women?
17 A. Yes, we did dig separately. We put the women in one grave,
18 two or three, depending on how many we pulled out, and we did the same
19 with the men. We would dig special -- we would dig separate graves and
20 bury them in them, depending on how many we pulled out: Three, four,
21 eight, they would all be buried in one grave, depending.
22 Q. Were there more women than men or vice versa?
23 A. There were more male bodies pulled out than female ones.
24 Q. Were you able to determine ethnicity in any way, the ethnicity of
25 the bodies pulled out?
1 A. Yes. We studied each male body and studied their sexual organs,
2 because Muslim men are circumcised, whereas Orthodox males have different
3 customs and they're not circumcised.
4 Q. On the basis of that criteria for differentiation, were there
5 bodies which were not Muslim bodies that you pulled out of the Drina
7 A. I personally didn't see, but I did hear that one body was not
8 circumcised and that that body was pulled out of the Zepa, and we buried
9 -- where we buried the others.
10 Q. On the basis of the bodies you yourself saw, can you confirm that
11 they were Muslims?
12 A. Yes. All of them except this one body that I didn't see, but I
13 heard from the people who were in charge of that that there was a Serb.
14 One of the bodies belonged to a Serb. He had his driver's licence with him
15 and his ID card.
16 Q. Was there a registry or a way of noting down everything you found
17 on the bodies? Did you record this in any way?
18 A. Yes. We had a notebook, an ordinary notebook, and everybody was
19 recorded with a number, from 1 onwards. If it was a female body, we would
20 write "female"; if not, we would write "male," and every object found on
21 them - a watch, a ring - and the clothing that the body was in, we would
22 write down a description of that too.
23 Q. Do you know what happened to these objects that were taken?
24 A. We had a sort of cardboard box, and all the items that we found we
25 would put into a bag or a cardboard box or a suitcase or something like
1 that and take it to the person who had recorded what we had found on the
2 bodies and the bodies themselves, the person in charge of doing that.
3 Q. Do you know what happened to the notebook where all this was
4 entered into?
5 A. I personally couldn't say exactly. The best person to give you
6 that kind of information - I don't know if he's protected or not - but
7 (redacted) would be the best man to ask. After the fall of Zepa, he went to
8 Srebrenica, and the notebook was left behind to another person, Amir,
9 nicknamed Hodza. He kept it. Now, what happened later on, where those
10 items were, where they were stored, I really can't tell you anything more
11 about them.
12 Q. When did you leave Zepa after all these events?
13 A. In December - I can't remember the exact date, the 6th or the 10th
14 of December, I left the village of Zepa across the territory of the
15 paramilitary units or Serb territory, towards Gorazde. At a place called
16 Crni Vrh, our army was there, that is to say, the Bosnian army, and in
17 December, it was at the Crni Vrh locality in the vicinity of Visegrad. I
18 stayed there with the army for about 10, 15, maybe even 20 days. I can't
19 quite remember all the details, until the first convoy towards Gorazde.
20 From Crni Vrh towards -- going from Crni Vrh towards Gorazde. The journey
21 was a very difficult and risky one because we had to cross mined roads,
22 woods, and territory held by the Serb forces, Serb territory, in fact.
23 After coming to Gorazde and after the several months I spent in
24 Zepa, I found myself --
25 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Witness VG22.
1 We have no further questions to ask the witness.
2 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Domazet.
3 Cross-examined by Mr. Domazet:
4 Q. Sir, you spoke about the number of bodies that you succeeded in
5 pulling out of the Drina, but you said that a certain number of bodies
6 went down the river and that you weren't able to retrieve them. Would you
7 be able to say how many bodies escaped you in comparison to the ones that
8 you managed to retrieve? What is the ratio? Would you say you pulled out
9 more bodies or that more bodies got away, so to speak, if you can tell us
11 A. Yes, I can. The ratio of the bodies and what my associates told
12 me, Hamed, nicknamed Hodza especially, whose job it was to look after
13 that, he said that from the lake formed by the Drina River, 273 bodies
14 were pulled out. However, this probably was in the -- a part from the
15 Visegrad bridge to the dam, and the Muslims tried to pull them out and
16 bury them, give them a proper burial. Of course, it couldn't have been a
17 proper burial, of course, but at least to be able to show that the body
18 had been buried. The number of bodies that disappeared, according to some
19 facts and figures, shows that the number was over 3.000, women, children,
20 men, the elderly and infirm. Over 3.000 that figure is, judging by the
21 census taken in 1992.
22 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter apologises. Persons missing,
23 not bodies. Three thousand persons missing.
24 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Yes, I understand. You're talking about the overall number of
1 persons missing, looking at the population census with regard to missing
2 persons for the territory but that's not what I asked you. There are
3 others who were in charge of that. My question was, in relation to those
4 270-odd bodies which were collected from Visegrad to the place where you
5 were, that is the total number of bodies collected; is that right?
6 A. No. No. This was what we collected from Visegrad to Perucac and
7 a place called Stolovas and Bajina Basta. But in Slap, as far as I know,
8 and the exhumation that I attended when the bodies were pulled out, I can
9 say that I took out over 60 and buried them.
10 Q. Yes, I understand. So this figure represents the number of bodies
11 which from Visegrad, Perucac and Bajina Basta were taken out. But my
12 question to you was: Can you assess the ratio or percentage in relation
13 to the overall number of bodies floating down the Drina River, which might
14 have escaped you and you weren't able to pull them out. Were you able to
15 pull out most of the bodies, a larger portion, or not?
16 A. Well, 20, 25 per cent possibly were taken out. Less bodies were
17 taken out and retrieved than the ones that escaped flowing down the Drina.
18 Q. So you think that more bodies flowed down the Drina than were
19 pulled out?
20 A. Absolutely correct, yes, because we did not have the possibility
21 of pulling them out regularly and burying them. The circumstances were
22 such, the conditions in the lake were such that, we couldn't do this. The
23 lake at times -- the water was released at times, and sometimes there was
24 10, 15 metres of water. The water level changed. Sometimes the bed was
25 dry, so the water level varied, 10, 15 metres, and so on. The other
1 difficulty was the shelling and shooting from small arms from the Starevo
2 village and a hilly place called Stolovas. Everything that
3 moved, whether it was cattle, a cow or a car or whatever, all that was
4 killed. You couldn't be certain of not being hit and not being killed.
5 Everything living was a target.
6 Q. Can you tell us what was the furthest point that the bodies could
7 have flowed down the Drina?
8 A. In my assessment, the town of Visegrad mostly. Most of them came
9 from the town of Visegrad. Because if you look at Fosta [phoen] and
10 Gorazde, well, possibly a body could have crossed the dam, because the
11 water was released, they probably cleaned up there too and buried some
12 bodies, if there were any, or they would let them flow down. Some of the
13 bodies were already decomposing.
14 Q. When you were asked by the -- when you said to the Prosecutor that
15 there was a case of a crucified body on a door, on a plank, you said that
16 you didn't see that personally but you were told this by some other person
17 who was in charge, and you mentioned a name. Could you tell us who told
18 you that exactly? I didn't understand from your answer.
19 A. I was referring to Hamed, nicknamed Hodza. And if you're
20 interested, there is proof by people who went to fetch food towards
21 Srebrenica in boats, in the Drina canyon, river canyon, in the rocks
22 there. There were people tied -- who had had their legs tied. I didn't
23 see that, but some living victims -- some living -- some people who
24 survived talked about that, although I don't know whether they're still
25 alive. But two years ago the man was still alive who had seen personally
1 eight people tied together, their legs tied together, eight people in a
3 Q. What I asked you was for that particular case involving Hamed, so
4 it wasn't (redacted)?
5 A. No, it wasn't, although they were both in charge, they were in
6 charge of keeping records, and sometimes they both worked together at the
7 same time. Sometimes it was one or the other. But that particular man
8 told me that a man or a woman had been nailed to the door. One person had
9 been nailed to one side of the door, the woman, and the man was nailed to
10 the other side.
11 Q. When you spoke of the paramilitary units and where they were
12 stationed in Visegrad, you said that it was the new hotel in Visegrad. My
13 question was whether you meant the Visegrad Hotel, that is to say, the
14 hotel by the famous old bridge. Is that the one you had in mind?
15 A. Yes, that's right. That's the one.
16 Q. At the beginning of your testimony, when you spoke of your first
17 departure from Visegrad, when you were in Gorazde for nine days, you said
18 today that you did that because of the arrival of the Uzice Corps, which
19 was to have arrived, and you also mentioned the problem with the dam and
20 the water. In the statement you gave to the investigator, you said, and I
21 quote: "I left Visegrad for Gorazde because the dam was opened and we
22 were frightened of flooding. I left on the 13th of April, 1992, and in
23 Visegrad before that there were some political tensions but there weren't
24 any all-out incidents, just general unrest."
25 Is that correct? Is that true?
1 A. Yes, it is. That's quite true, quite correct.
2 Q. And do you maintain that today as well?
3 A. Yes, I do.
4 Q. Now, if I mention the dam and the water, it wasn't a case of -- it
5 was from my personal safety, personal security?
6 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have no further
7 questions for you.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I just make one request, please,
9 if I may, Your Honours. I should like to correct something that I said.
10 There was some mistakes between Milan and Dragan, when I spoke about Milan
11 and Dragan, so with the Court's indulgence I should like to apologise and
12 say that I had made the -- I had to correct myself, because I got Milan
13 and Dragan mixed up.
14 JUDGE HUNT: We understand that, sir. Thank you very much.
15 Any re-examination, Mr. Ossogo?
16 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President. One or two
18 Re-examined by Mr. Ossogo:
19 Q. [Interpretation] Witness VG21, at the place where you pulled out
20 the bodies, were you able to estimate the speed of the current, the water
21 current? Was it strong, a strong water current there, or not so strong?
22 A. Well, it was like this: When the lake is closed, shut off, the
23 speed of the water could not be noticed. It flowed by slowly. Then the
24 speed of the water is slow. But when the turbines were working, you could
25 feel that the water was moving more quickly. But as I said a moment ago
1 to Defence counsel, all this depended on how the water from the lake was
2 released. Sometimes it was enough to be released 10 to 15 metres for us
3 not to be able to approach, and sometimes our boats were left on dry
4 land. When the water was not in the lake, the bed was dry.
5 Q. Your team, the team that pulled out the bodies, did it work day
6 and night, round the clock, to pull out the bodies that were flowing down
7 the Drina River?
8 A. No. Just during the day. We worked only during the day.
9 Q. Very well. So there were bodies floating down the Drina that you
10 could not have seen?
11 A. That's right, yes.
12 Q. The mistake you put right with respect to the names you gave, you
13 mixed up the two names. Could you clarify that, please?
14 A. Yes. I mentioned Dragan Savic. He took me to the SUP. He
15 detained me and took me to the SUP, and I have very serious consequences
16 from that. And on one occasion when the accused -- I recognised the
17 accused in the SUP, the police station. The gentleman wanted to interview
18 me with respect to a pistol which Dragan Savic had brought me to the SUP
20 Q. I have to stop you there, Witness VG21. You said that you
21 confused two names, so it wasn't -- Dragan Lukic you confused with which
22 other name?
23 A. With Dragan Savic.
24 Q. So you confused Dragan Savic with which other person? What other
25 name did you say?
1 A. Milan Lukic. I confused Dragan Savic with Milan Lukic.
2 Q. Do you know those two people?
3 A. I don't know Milan Lukic, but I do know Dragan Savic, because on
4 one occasion I saw Milan Lukic out of a window, that's all.
5 Q. You saw him through a window where? Where was this?
6 A. From the house of VG22.
7 Q. VG22, you mean your brother-in-law?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Could you see what he was doing?
10 A. He was driving a Passat car. He got out of the car, he talked to
11 the chief. I told you that he gave him two litres of cognac, some oil,
12 some sugar cubes and some other stuff.
13 Q. Did he say anything particular?
14 A. Yes. He told Mr. VG22 not to worry, that he was the chief of the
15 Visegrad SUP, and he gave him the telephone number, his telephone number,
16 if there were any problems, that -- so that he could call him and ask for
17 his assistance.
18 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Ossogo, this does not strictly arise out of
19 cross-examination, but you certainly would have leave to deal with it, the
20 witness having drawn attention to the confusion in his mind. But it would
21 have to be subject to further cross-examination.
22 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Very well, Mr. President. I have
23 completed my cross-examination [as interpreted].
24 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Domazet, do you want to ask any questions arising
25 out of that further material? You may have dealt with it slightly in the
1 course of your cross-examination.
2 MR. DOMAZET: No, Your Honour. Thank you.
3 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you very much, sir. That completes your task
4 here. We're grateful to you for having come along to give evidence and
5 for the evidence you gave. You are now free to leave.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours, and I hope
7 that justice will reach every person in the future so that what happened
8 should not happen again. So thank you very much.
9 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you, sir.
10 [The witness withdrew]
11 JUDGE HUNT: Now, Mr. Masovic is the next witness; is that so?
12 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] That is right, Mr. President.
13 JUDGE HUNT: We've got the transcript from the Krnojelac case.
14 I've discovered that half of it is put in back to front, but I think I can
15 sort that one out. Is there any -- has there been any suggestion from the
16 Defence that other pages should be added to it, Mr. Domazet?
17 MR. DOMAZET: No, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you very much. Very well, then. Let's have
19 Mr. Masovic.
20 [The witness entered court]
21 THE WITNESS: AMOR MASOVIC
22 [Witness answered through interpreter]
23 JUDGE HUNT: Sir, would you make the solemn declaration in the
24 document which the Court usher is handing to you.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
1 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
2 JUDGE HUNT: Sit down, please, sir.
3 Yes, Mr. Ossogo.
4 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President
5 Examined by Mr. Ossogo:
6 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Amor Masovic.
7 A. Good afternoon.
8 Q. Could you please introduce yourself to the Chamber and tell them
9 your name, your current position.
10 A. My name is Amor Masovic. By occupation I am a lawyer. Currently
11 I have the position of president of the Federal Commission for the Search
12 of Missing Persons in the Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina. I'm a member
13 of the parliament of Bosnia and Herzegovina and member of the Commissions
14 for Equality of Sexes and the Administrative Commission of the parliament
15 of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I'm also a member of the Auditing Commission of
16 the Association for Criminal Law and Criminology of the Federation of
18 Q. Thank you, Mr. Masovic. Could you -- I would like to ask you a
19 procedural question. Have you received a copy by way of information of an
20 order of this Chamber issued on the 24th of June, 2001, this year, in
21 which it is indicated that the examination that you will have will not
22 cover a certain number of questions which were covered in another case,
23 that is, the Prosecutor versus Krnojelac? Have you been notified or have
24 you received such a document from the Office of the Prosecutor?
25 A. Yes, I have.
1 Q. You're also aware of the areas that are concerned, the areas we
2 will discuss?
3 A. Yes, I am.
4 Q. Mr. Amor, we have received from you a certain number of documents
5 regarding the very hard work that you have undertaken within the framework
6 of your duties as president or head of the Commission for the Search of
7 Missing Persons, and we're going to work on these documents in the course
8 of this examination-in-chief, for which you have been called here. But
9 first I should like to ask you: In the course of the year 200, and this
10 year, 2001, whether you know exactly how many exhumations have been done
11 within the framework of your activities, if you know?
12 A. In the course of last year and this current year, in the area of
13 Visegrad municipality or in the environs of Visegrad municipality, 311
14 victims have been exhumed, out of which 152 have been identified. 159
15 victims, unfortunately, have still not been identified. These 311 victims
16 were exhumed, if I remember correctly, in 14 different sites, and at
17 some of those sites I was -- I took members of the Commission to visit
18 some of those sites.
19 Q. I'm going to show you a map so that you could give us some
20 information so that the Chamber can see where those sites are. The
21 document is 140-1.
22 JUDGE HUNT: At some stage, Mr. Ossogo, are you going to tender
23 the transcript of the evidence from the Krnojelac case?
24 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, quite, Mr. President.
25 Q. You have there a map containing information on the sites. You
1 mentioned there were 14 in all, as well as the number of bodies which were
2 exhumed at those sites, and the locations, particularly Visegrad, where
3 those exhumations took place. Was this document prepared by you yourself
4 and your service or is it a document coming from a different source?
5 A. This document was prepared by my service, specialising in
6 recording and photographing the sites of mass graves, and following my
8 Q. Very well. Could you, Mr. Amor, show us on this map specifically
9 where the exhumations were done in the area of Slap and Zepa.
10 A. I can point to all the locations. So specifically, if we're
11 talking about Slap, which is close to the settlement of Zepa, we worked on
12 two locations within Slap itself and two locations a little further off
13 having different names. So the first site was Slap 1. It is a site on
14 which one mass grave was discovered with 125 victims buried, sometimes
15 individually, one next to another, and at other times the victims were
16 separate. As for site Slap 2, which is downstream, following the course
17 of the Drina River, or rather, the course of the Perucac Lake, at a
18 distance of about one kilometre from the first site, we found another
19 seven bodies. At site Kamenicko Tocilo, which is situated at about two
20 kilometres from the first site, that is, Slap 1, four victims were found,
21 or, to be more specific, three victims and only parts of a fourth victim,
22 that is, only the skull of that victim was found. And finally, the last
23 site in this region of the Perucac Lake is a site that we have called Luke
24 and which is situated on the right bank of the Drina River, opposite the
25 settlement of Luke, and there three victims were exhumed.
1 All these victims that I have referred to at these four sites,
2 according to sources that we obtained, were people from Visegrad,
3 civilians who were executed in Visegrad and whose bodies flowed down the
4 Drina River and reached these four sites.
5 JUDGE HUNT: So that we can follow this on the transcript later,
6 the sites to which the witness has referred are numbered on this document
7 numbered 140-1. Two, three, four, and five. Yes.
8 A. Yes, that is correct, Your Honour. Those are sites 2, 3, 4, and
9 5. Add to which a total of 139 victims were found.
10 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Very well, Mr. Masovic. You have indicated the position of the
12 various sites where you worked, or rather, your commission, to be able to
13 do the exhumations. Could you tell us, in very general terms: In this
14 particular case, that is, the municipality of Visegrad, which methods did
15 you apply, which systems, in order to achieve these exhumations, on the
16 one hand, and to carry out the identification, on the other, because a
17 moment ago you referred to civilian victims?
18 A. With respect to site number 2, which has officially been named
19 Slap 1, where 125 victims were found, the initial information about the
20 existence of those victims was received by the commission as long ago as
21 1992. To be more specific, towards the end of 1992 and the beginning of
22 1993, when the first refugees coming from Visegrad and Zepa reached
23 Sarajevo and brought with them reports that along the Drina River a large
24 number of victims had floated as far as the location of Slap, where the
25 local population approached those bodies if they were close to the river
1 bank, without using boats, and if the victims were floating midstream, in
2 the middle of the lake or parallel with the right bank of the River Drina,
3 then the local population used boats to reach those bodies and to
4 transport the bodies to the spot called Slap 1, where these victims were
5 buried. So in fact, the commission has information ever since 1992 about
6 the existence of this mass grave of victims from Visegrad.
7 Witnesses who were refugees from Visegrad and Zepa who brought
8 this information with them spoke about the crimes committed against the
9 civilian, non-Serb population in Visegrad, and as far as I can recall,
10 most of the information had to do with the execution of Visegrad civilians
11 on the spot of two bridges, the old and new bridges in Visegrad, and the
12 victims were liquidated on those very bridges or they were forced to jump
13 alive off the bridge, upon which they were shot at in the water, that is,
14 in the Drina River, while those who were -- until those who were shooting
15 were convinced that the victims were dead.
16 In the course of the war, the Sarajevo commission was unable to
17 undertake any exhumation on this site because the area of Zepa was totally
18 isolated. Actually, it was an enclave within the territory under the
19 control of the forces of Karadzic and Mladic.
20 Q. Let me interrupt you there. We'll come back to that, Mr. Masovic.
21 So you told us that these were members of the population who
22 came to inform your commission at the head of which you stand, and it was
23 on the basis of that information that you undertook the exhumation. Were
24 they direct witnesses, people who actually experienced the killing or the
25 burying? Were they direct or indirect witnesses? How would you qualify
1 them? How would you describe them?
2 A. The first witnesses who contacted us were probably sort of
3 secondhand witnesses, that is, hearsay witnesses, people who were not
4 directly responsible for the retrieval and burial of the victims. So I'm
5 talking about the witness who came to our commission while the war was
6 still ongoing, that is, the period from 1992 until the end of 1995. Once
7 the war ended, we were also contacted by witnesses who were directly
8 responsible and appointed by the local authorities in Zepa to take care of
9 the retrieval of the victims and to give them a civilised burial, if
10 possible. So these were now first-hand witnesses or eyewitnesses.
11 Specifically, if we're talking about site Slap 2 - so the site
12 marked with the number 3 - we contacted a witness who personally buried
13 those seven victims, which he had, together with another man, pulled out
14 of the Drina River, and in a rather inaccessible part of the river bank,
15 he managed to find a spot where the victims could be buried, which he did.
16 So seven or eight years after the event, that witness personally took us
17 to this site which he was familiar with and he showed us the spot where
18 those seven victims had been buried.
19 As regards site Slap 1, witnesses took us to the actual site and
20 it was visible at first glance already that this was a mass grave, because
21 almost all the victims' graves had been marked with pieces of wood, with
22 ordinal numbers on them, which stood for the victims.
23 At sites 4 and 5, again we were taken there by eyewitnesses who
24 were present when the victims were pulled out of the Drina River and
25 buried on the right bank of that river.
1 Q. Thank you, Mr. Masovic. You yourself, personally, did you
2 participate in detecting those sites once you received the information?
3 Did you have a method or special process of detection after having
4 received this information from witnesses?
5 A. I wouldn't call them any special methods; I would call them
6 customary methods used by our commission, and this method, briefly,
7 consists of, wherever possible and whenever eyewitnesses agree, to go on
8 site, together with members of my commission. So that is what we do, that
9 is, we have the eyewitnesses indicate to us the spot. The people in the
10 commission already have a certain amount of experience and they are able
11 to assess whether this is a potential grave, an individual grave, a joint
12 grave or a mass grave or if that is not the case. And in other cases
13 for which we do not have eyewitnesses of the burial of victims, we use
14 some other methods which consist of various examinations of the land,
15 checking the land with the help of mechanical probes or dredgers or
16 backhoes, up to the use of specially trained dogs, trained to discover
17 human remains.
18 Q. Did you receive information from other sources, non-local sources
19 which were not dependent upon your commission?
20 A. Generally speaking, yes, from many, many different sources
21 information reached our commission. But when talking about the territory
22 of Visegrad municipality, we had the good fortune of virtually in all
23 cases having eyewitnesses of the events who were able to remember the
24 locations of the individual and mass graves. Only in the case of site
25 Kurtalici, where 62 victims were located, we learnt about the existence
1 of that grave from a Bosniak, a local inhabitant who returned to his home
2 last year after spending eight years as a refugee. And when he went
3 fishing in the lake, he noticed at the very edge of the lake a skeleton,
4 and he didn't know whether it was a human skeleton or not. He contacted
5 our commission and we established that this was a mass grave in which
6 there were 62 bodies.
7 Q. Can you give us the exact site when speaking of Kurtalic, when
8 speaking about Kurtalic? Can you give us the exact site?
9 A. Yes. It's the site numbered 7, north-west of the town of
10 Visegrad, about ten kilometres away from the centre of Visegrad,
11 downstream, on the right side, or rather, on the right bank of the Perucac
12 Lake or Drina River, rather.
13 Q. Did you receive any information from institutions or international
14 humanitarian organisations?
15 A. I said generally speaking that we receive information from
16 practically all possible sources, and I would like to enumerate as
17 sources, apart from the direct or indirect witnesses, members of their
18 family -- members of the families of the persons missing who have some
19 knowledge about the disappearance of their family members or the
20 liquidation of their family members; next we have reports from our local
21 commissions, which are to be found in different towns throughout
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina. In concrete terms, speaking about the Visegrad
23 region, information about what was going on in Visegrad came in from our
24 department or, rather, our regional commission, with its headquarters in
25 the town of Gorazde.
1 Next, we had military sources, police sources, intelligence
2 sources, and sources close to the International Red Cross Committee. In
3 the post-war period, other international organisations such as
4 international police forces, the international police force stationed in
5 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and the SFOR, the military force in charge of keeping
6 the peace in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the office of the High Commissioner and,
7 in the past two years, information has been coming in from the Institute
8 for Missing Persons, with its headquarters in Sarajevo, which was
9 established which the International Commission for Missing Persons, which
10 was set up in 1997, in France, in Lyon, at a meeting of the G7 group and
11 at the initiative of the former president of the United States of America,
12 Mr. Clinton.
13 Therefore, local civilian organs, such as wartime presidencies,
14 they too sent in information about disappearances, the liquidation of
15 persons, and so on and so forth.
16 Q. So it is on the basis of all this information that you undertook
17 the exhumations which resulted in the map that you have compiled; is that
19 A. Yes, you could put it that way. On the basis of all these
20 sources, all the sources that I mentioned, a database was set up
21 pertaining to persons who had gone missing in the Visegrad area, or
22 rather, further afield in the whole of Bosnia-Herzegovina, in the course
23 of the war, and that on the basis of direct eyewitnesses as well, except
24 in the Kurtalic case, we went on to the sites, the exhumation sites.
25 And along with standard procedure, we conducted the exhumations
2 Q. I should like to go back to the disappearances and exhumations.
3 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Mr. President, at this stage we
4 should like to enter into evidence the transcripts which for the moment
5 have the numbers 54/4, and it is the Prosecutor versus Milorad Krnojelac.
6 It was in that case. I think you have the English version.
7 JUDGE HUNT: This is Prosecutor's motion for proof of facts,
8 pursuant to Rule 92 bis. We've got that. Is it the same?
9 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, it is the same. It's quite --
10 it is the same, one and the same document, Mr. President.
11 JUDGE HUNT: Is there any objection to the tender of the
12 transcripts, Mr. Domazet?
13 MR. DOMAZET: No, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you. They will be Exhibit P54/4.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Will it be the entire binder that you would like
16 to tender at this time?
17 JUDGE HUNT: We've got a limited number.
18 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] For the proceedings, what we could
19 do, Mr. President, is that we indicate that we would like to have this
20 exhibit tendered into evidence from the registrar, from the binder, and
21 then we can go on to adopting it later on in its entirety.
22 JUDGE HUNT: At the moment, though, you are dealing only with
23 material that was --
24 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] But we will leave it with the
1 JUDGE HUNT: At the moment you are dealing only with the material
2 that was attached to the motion under Rule 92 bis; is that right?
3 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Well, that is, as I say, Exhibit P54/4 you can sort
5 out with the deputy later on what part of the folder that comprises and
6 we'll deal with the rest of it later.
7 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Mr. Amor, can we move on to the practical details? You said that
9 you were present at the exhumations yourself; is that right? For all the
10 exhumations, but in particular for the Visegrad exhumations, you were
11 present yourself; is that right?
12 A. At some of the exhumations I was present myself, yes.
13 Q. Were you present at the Slap 1?
14 A. Yes. The Slap 1 and Slap 2 sites, yes.
15 Q. Could you tell us if you were able to compile a report or
16 establish a link? Do you follow my question? Could you tell us if you
17 established -- there was a report or any documents relative to the Slap 1
18 and 2 exhumation sites?
19 A. The victims reached the locality, the site, Slap 1 and 2, in
20 almost the same manner. They were victims, and this was shown during the
21 identification process. Some of the victims that we found at the Slap 1
22 site who were liquidated some 25 or more kilometres upstream, that is to
23 say, in the town of Visegrad. they were thrown into the Drina River then,
24 and the River Drina brought those victims downstream to the territory of
25 the town of Zepa and the Slap site, which was under the control of
1 government forces, and where the local population from Zepa, just like the
2 inhabitants of Visegrad, who had succeeded on leaving Visegrad in time,
3 pulled out those bodies to the bank and buried them there. And there is
4 no difference between sites 2, 3, 4, and 5 when it comes to the way in
5 which -- or rather, how the victims came to find themselves in that
6 locality. All the victims were brought down by the Drina River, flowed
7 down the Drina River.
8 Q. I was just asking you whether you had established any documents
9 with respect to the exhumations you conducted at the Slap sites. Now, I
10 have a document here and I'd like to have your opinion on it. I'd like to
11 ask you some questions with respect to those exhumations. They refer to
12 Slap sites 1 and 2. It is Exhibit 54/5, table B.
13 JUDGE HUNT: Is this the balance of the binder which is labelled
14 Exhibit 54?
15 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] 54/5, Mr. President.
16 JUDGE HUNT: You see, this is new. I'm not complaining, but I
17 just want to make sure we understand what we've got here now. This
18 document, this folder which is labelled 54, comprises 54/1, which we
19 haven't seen in evidence yet, 54/2, which we haven't seen, 54/3, which we
20 haven't seen. Now, 54.5 is what you're dealing with now. I'm sorry. We
21 have seen 54.4, which is at the back, I think. Yes. So we'll use this
22 folder bearing in mind that you will eventually get the whole -- or be
23 tendering the whole of it in evidence.
24 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, quite so, Mr. President.
25 JUDGE HUNT: I think I understand now. Thank you.
1 A. The document entitled "Table B" --
2 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Mr. Masovic, Table B.
4 A. This document with that title was compiled by the Commission for
5 the Quest of Missing Persons of the Bosnia-Herzegovina Federation, and in
6 that document, that is to say, the document contains 152 names of persons
7 who were exhumed at 14 different sites in the Visegrad municipality or the
8 environs of Visegrad municipality, of the 311 victims who were exhumed.
9 I said in my introduction that there were 311 victims and 152 were
10 identified, and their names, first and last names, are contained in the
11 document titled "Table B."
12 From the table, you can see, if that is at all important, if
13 you're interested in it, and I think it could be important, that victim
14 41, for example, victim number 41, was a female. Her name was Hanka
15 Halilovic. She was born in 1900, and at the moment of liquidation in 1992
16 she was 92 years old.
17 Q. Yes, Mr. Masovic. Let me just stop you for a minute. The
18 document that you refer to, Table B, comprises two annexes, annex 1 and
19 annex 2. Those two annexes, annex 1 and 2, are they annexes which provide
20 us with more details of the map which was compiled by your commission?
21 A. Yes, that's right. These two documents tabled B, annex 1 and
22 annex 2, are textual descriptions of the map, which was compiled by my
23 commission, and in annex 1, for example, we enumerate all 14 sites
24 relating to exhumation in the Visegrad municipality in the period between
25 the year 2000 and 2001. And the annex 2 table enumerates those same
1 sites, that is to say, the 14 sites, but they were grouped either
2 according to the geographical location or the time at which the events
3 took place, time in which the events took place. So that those 14 sites
4 are divided into three areas, three regions, and this can be seen on the
5 map itself. Those three areas have been marked site 1, with only one
6 locality of exhumation; then we have area 2, where we have four sites,
7 Slap 1, Slap 2, Kamenicko Tocilo, and Luke; and the third area, where we
8 have nine different sites where exhumations were conducted. They are
9 Kurtalici 1 and 2, Balimo [phoen], Gornja Mostanica, Crni Vrh, Jelacici,
10 and Visegrad. So these names are in fact the names of the villages
11 surrounding the urban part of the town of Visegrad, villages in which the
12 exhumations were conducted.
13 Q. The circles on the map, there are three big circles, a big one,
14 medium sized one and a small one, and the numbers are 1, 2, and 3; do they
15 correspond to what is contained in annex 2 of table B? Let's take group
16 1. Does that correspond to the first circle and the group 2 to the second
17 circle and group 3 to the third circle on the map? Do they correspond?
18 A. Yes. That's what I've just been explaining. They are three
19 groups, or three areas which are textually described in annex 2. They
20 contain the name of the locality, the number of victims exhumed, the
21 number of victims identified, and the number of non-identified victims in
22 each of the localities, on each of the sites.
23 Q. To go back to Table B proper, and we see several columns there:
24 Name, father's name, et cetera, columns, date of birth, first name, date
25 of birth, sex, and present residence, the address of the person whose body
1 was found. We see that in annex 1 of Table B we have the number of
2 identified. Was it the identification number of the person or --
3 actually, can you explain it to us?
4 A. We have here a number, the mathematical expression of the number
5 of exhumed victims. If, for example, in annex 1 we have the Kalimanici
6 site, Yama Paklenik, then the next column denotes the number of victims
7 found and exhumed, and that was 73. After that, you have the number of
8 identified victims, how many victims were identified, and that was 65, 65
9 victims were identified. And then the next column denotes the number of
10 unidentified victims, and there were eight of those. And finally, the
11 last column shows the group in which this locality is to be found; group
12 1, 2, or 3, which are marked on the map.
13 Q. Very well. Thank you. To go back to the observations, there's a
14 column where it says "sex" on Table B, the main table, Table B, and you've
15 just told us that there are two columns in the annex, in annex 1 of Table
16 B, which indicates the people exhumed, identified, and unidentified.
17 Could you tell the Chamber how you proceeded to the identification
18 process. Do you make a difference between exhumation and the
19 identification of those people? How did you identify them? Did you
20 determine what shape the bodies were in, whether they were male, female,
21 and what shape the bodies were in?
22 A. An autopsy of the victims is the method in which we establish the
23 sex of the victim, so autopsy and forensic expertise, determines whether
24 the victim is male or female. When I say "identification," we just
25 determine the identity of the victim, which means their first and last
1 names. And from Table B, we can ascertain that of the 311 victims which
2 we succeeded in finding and exhuming, 152 have been identified up until
3 the present day. The remaining 159 victims have still not been
4 identified, although their sex was determined; we know whether they were
5 men or women. So although we know their sex, we don't know who they are.
6 Of the 159 victims, we took samples of their skeletons and we are
7 in the process of doing DNK or DNA analyses using the blood of potential
8 relatives and bone samples as well in order to establish the identity of
9 the remaining 159 men and women who are as yet unidentified.
10 Q. As regards names, the names indicated on Table B, in view of the
11 fact that you have given us explanations with respect to sex
12 determination, which is a start for identifying the individuals as such,
13 can you explain how you were able to establish, for example, number 2,
14 that it was in fact Emin Hadzic [phoen], whose father's name was Fadil?
15 Were they direct -- did you get this information from direct eyewitnesses
16 or indirect witnesses or how did you establish the actual names, the
18 A. Well, first and foremost, in some of the cases we had information
19 that at a certain time, in a certain place, such-and-such a person or so
20 many people had been liquidated, and they state -- and the names and --
21 the first names and last names of the victims were stated. Let me give
22 you an example, a possible example. Let's say that the event took place
23 in Visegrad, on the bridge, that they were executed, that is to say, five
24 men were executed on a certain day in the month of June, 1992, and one day
25 or two days later, or a few hours after the event, the river Drina brings
1 with it to the Slap site the bodies of victims which the local inhabitants
2 are able to recognise. On the Slap site, therefore, a list was compiled
3 of some 50 names of the 125, which was the total number of bodies pulled
4 out of the Drina. So some 50 of these names, the local population was
5 able to identify while the bodies were being pulled out of the Drina
6 River. The local inhabitants recognised them.
7 Of course, the commission for the identification of victims, which
8 was made up of the judge of the cantonal court, the Prosecutor, the crime
9 technician policeman, and the physician, or rather, the forensic expert
10 who is a doctor, medical doctor by profession, would need a little more in
11 order to determine the identity of each and every victim.
12 JUDGE HUNT: It's 4.00. The Court will break now. We'll resume
13 again tomorrow morning at 9.30.
14 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
15 MR. DOMAZET: Your Honour, please.
16 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, Mr. Domazet.
17 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I should like to ask
18 you, if possible, to begin somewhat later tomorrow. For example, at
19 10.00. I thought we would have a free day tomorrow and I have some duties
20 to attend to at the airport tomorrow morning. So may I beg the Court's
21 indulgence and ask that we begin at 10.00 a.m. I hope we have only
22 Mr. Masovic and I hope to get through him in due course.
23 JUDGE HUNT: You mean you'll be back from the airport by 10.00 in
24 the morning?
25 MR. DOMAZET: Yes.
1 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, that's all right. I see Mr. Masovic is put
2 down for a three-hour hearing. I hope we'll be able to contain it within
3 that -- we've got a little more time to manoeuvre, but I would like to
4 finish him tomorrow. That's all. So perhaps that would keep some sort of
5 a brake upon excess cross-examination, if I may put it that way.
6 MR. DOMAZET: Yes.
7 JUDGE HUNT: Very well, then. We'll adjourn now.
8 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 4.03 p.m.,
9 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 25th day of
10 September, 2001, at 10.00 a.m.