1 Tuesday, 20 November 2001
2 [Open session]
3 [The witness entered court]
4 [The accused entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.29 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: Mr. Groome.
10 MR. GROOME: Good morning, Your Honours.
11 WITNESS: PETAR MITROVIC [Resumed]
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 Cross-examined by Mr. Groome: [Continued]
14 Q. Good morning, Mr. Mitrovic.
15 A. Good morning.
16 MR. GROOME: I'd ask that document 152 be placed before
17 Mr. Mitrovic.
18 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, we finished yesterday with you making a few markings
19 on that photograph. I'm going to ask you to make one other marking.
20 I'd ask you to take the blue pen and, if you can, can you trace a line to
21 show us the path that the -- that you saw the horse ridden by Mr.
22 Vasiljevic take. Indicate which street he was riding down, and perhaps
23 if you would draw an arrow to indicate which direction they were riding.
24 A. You know what? I'll have to draw the street over the roof because
25 you can't see the street. May I do that?
1 Q. Well, Mr. Mitrovic, let me show you another picture and see does
2 this more clearly indicate the road that Mr. Vasiljevic was riding down.
3 MR. GROOME: I ask that the witness be shown Prosecution document
4 155, and there are copies for the court.
5 Q. I'm now looking at Prosecution document 155. Are you able to see
6 the street that you saw Mr. Vasiljevic riding the horse down?
7 A. I do. This is much better, and I can then draw the line from
8 where I spotted him. May I draw?
9 Q. Yes, please.
10 A. Shall I put an "X" where Mitar was, where I say him?
11 Q. Can you put an "X-1" to show us where he was the first moment you
12 saw him.
13 A. Yes, but from this angle, you can't see the street properly either
14 but this is more or less in my direction.
15 Q. Can you draw an arrow to indicate the direction that he was
17 A. Yes. This is a side street in front of this park, so it's nearer
18 here. You can't see that. And you can see this other side street, so I
19 put an arrow there.
20 Q. Now, are you more able to clearly indicate where it was you saw
21 him fall on this exhibit as opposed to the one we showed you yesterday?
22 Can you more clearly indicate where you saw him fall on this picture?
23 A. I can, yes.
24 Q. I would ask you to indicate that by putting "X-2." Now, before we
25 put that on the ELMO so you can explain it to us, I'd ask you just to
1 write your name at the bottom of the photograph on the white portion.
2 A. You want me to point at it?
3 Q. Yes, with the pointer, would you point at "X-1," indicating the
4 first point where you saw Mr. Vasiljevic.
5 A. "X-1." You can't see the street again from this angle, but this
6 is this street, in this triangle here.
7 Q. And you saw him there while you were standing in front of the
8 Hotel Visegrad?
9 JUDGE HUNT: Can we have a light on, please. It's very difficult
10 to see anything.
11 A. Yes.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Right. Now, can we start that again. I'm sorry, I
13 can see an arrow leading towards that triangular square. What was the
15 MR. GROOME:
16 Q. The arrow indicates the direction which you saw Mr. Vasiljevic
17 riding on the horse; is that correct, Mr. Mitrovic?
18 A. That's right. In this direction.
19 Q. Now, it appears that we can see two sides of a park that is a
20 three-sided or triangular park; is that correct?
21 A. It is. We can see almost the whole park, but we can't see the
23 Q. So there's a -- on the third side of the park, there is also a
24 street which is obscured at this point by the roofs of the building in
25 front of it; correct?
1 A. I didn't understand what you mean.
2 Q. You're telling us or you're describing the street on the third
3 side of the park, the side of the park that we cannot see from this
4 photograph; correct?
5 A. Yes. Yes, it is.
6 Q. And is that where you saw Mr. Vasiljevic for the first time riding
7 the horse?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And was he riding the horse on the park, in the grassy area, or on
10 the street?
11 A. On the street, and he was very loud because the horse wouldn't
12 obey him and that is how I heard him, because he was speaking loudly, and
13 that is when I then called him.
14 Q. Now, can you show us where you marked "X-1."
15 A. [Indicates].
16 Q. "X-1."
17 A. "X-1" and "X-2."
18 Q. I'd ask you to hold the pointer for us.
19 JUDGE HUNT: You have to just hold it there for a moment. Now
20 let's have "X-1" and hold the pointer steady. Is it on the grass?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. No. We simply cannot see the
23 JUDGE HUNT: So it's hidden by the roofs of those buildings, but
24 it's in the grass triangle. Is there a street that runs between the grass
25 triangle and those buildings?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There is.
2 MR. GROOME:
3 Q. I would now ask you to put the pointer and hold it on "X-2," the
4 place where you said you saw him fall off the horse.
5 A. [Indicates].
6 Q. Now, I'm going to ask you to take the pen and can you trace the
7 line between "X-1" and "X-2" to indicate the path that he took from the
8 first place you saw him until the place where you saw him fall.
9 A. He had gone back a little so that I couldn't see him for a while,
10 but I could hear him.
11 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, the street that we cannot see, were you able to see
12 whether Mr. Vasiljevic was coming down that street and was making a left
13 onto the street that you have now indicated? Are you able to tell us
15 A. That street goes up. It's slightly uphill. And when I saw him
16 there, he came back, not through the grass, because there is a curb, and
17 then turned in the direction of the hotel.
18 Q. So he made a left at the corner of that park and proceeded
19 directly towards the square in front of the hotel; correct?
20 A. Yes, a little back and then to the left, yes.
21 Q. Now, correct me if I am wrong; the road you've drawn this long
22 line on, that road, if I were to walk along that road, that would take me
23 to the Rzav bridge; correct?
24 A. Not to the Rzav bridge, the Drina bridge. Because this road is
25 slightly sloped. There is a slope and there is a slight mound and then it
1 heads towards the Drina bridge.
2 Q. You are talking about the old Drina bridge; correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. What I'm asking you, if I were to go to the opposite direction,
5 would it be true that I would be heading directly to the Rzav bridge, the
6 bridge over the Rzav River?
7 A. Yes, the opposite direction. He must have come from that
8 direction because this is the main street, so the bridge over the Rzav
9 River towards the bridge over the Drina River.
10 Q. So if I were to be coming directly from Pionirska Street to the
11 front of the hotel, I would be just travelling along that main street, the
12 street that you have described to us as the one that he turned onto;
14 A. Yes. Yes, from Pionirska, then the main street starts at the Rzav
15 bridge and ends at the Drina bridge.
16 Q. I'd ask you to take the red pen and can you just draw an arrow to
17 show us the road and the direction where -- to Pionirska settlement, the
18 Mahala section of Visegrad.
19 A. On the photograph, you can see only half of the main street; so in
20 the opposite direction, in this direction here.
21 Q. Okay. Thank you.
22 MR. GROOME: So the court knows, I did bring all the pictures
23 available of the square, I've shown them to Defence, and they are free,
24 they're at their disposal if they wish to make use of them.
25 Q. Now I'd like to return to Prosecution document 152 for a minute.
1 JUDGE HUNT: Are these going to be tendered?
2 MR. GROOME: Yes, Your Honour, I was going to tender the two of
3 them at the same time. Can we put Prosecution document 152...
4 Q. I'd just ask you to once again show us the spot where Mr.
5 Vasiljevic was when you saw him fall off the horse.
6 A. But this is not quite accurate. It is only approximate because of
7 the angle.
8 Q. Can I ask you to take the blue pen and put your initials, "PM," to
9 indicate where you were when you made this observation.
10 A. [Marks].
11 Q. And you've indicated you were at the edge of the awning in front
12 of the Visegrad Hotel; correct?
13 A. Yes. And that other -- on that other photograph, I can draw a
14 line. That other photograph is much more accurate. That is where I can
15 draw the line and one can see where Mitar was when I spotted him and
16 there, where I stood. Here, if I were to draw the line here, I said the
17 first building shields it, the second does, so you can't see anything.
18 Q. Let's return for a moment to Prosecution Exhibit 155. Prosecution
19 document number, I apologise.
20 JUDGE HUNT: Can we just get our bearings on that photograph so
21 that we know how they compare. Is the Visegrad Hotel that white building
22 closest to the bridge?
23 MR. GROOME:
24 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, I'd ask you to put the number 3 on the roof of the
25 Visegrad Hotel on this diagram, or on this photograph. And perhaps if you
1 put number 1 on the furniture store, that will help us orient ourselves.
2 A. On the roof.
3 Q. Because the diagram is so small, I'd ask you not to draw any
4 lines, but would you please put your initials where you were when you made
5 your observations of Mr. Vasiljevic.
6 A. [Marks].
7 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, at this time I would tender both of
8 those documents into evidence as Prosecution Exhibit 152-PM and 155-PM.
9 JUDGE HUNT: Any objection, Mr. Domazet -- I'm sorry,
10 Mr. Tanaskovic?
11 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this Exhibit 152,
12 one can see that the photograph is not clear at all, and the witness said
13 that he could not find his bearings there because one could not see the
14 most important things on this photograph. And therefore, I do not think
15 it will be particularly advisable to admit this photograph into evidence.
16 JUDGE HUNT: The trouble, Mr. Tanaskovic, is this; that we've had
17 a lot of cross-examination based upon it. The other photograph is perhaps
18 clearer, but nevertheless it will be of assistance. I don't understand
19 what the basis of the objection is. The witness did have difficulty in
20 pointing to things, but nevertheless, now that we've got it lined up with
21 the document 155, his evidence comes into much greater clarity.
22 What is your objection?
23 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] The witness explained certain
24 things which prevented him from being more accurate. I have a photograph
25 of the hotel and it looks like this, and here on this photograph 152, it
1 is completely shielded, screened off by these other buildings and you can
2 see the hotel when a proper photograph of it is taken.
3 JUDGE HUNT: It's a shame that you did not offer us that
4 yesterday. You may not have had it here, but I do not understand what the
5 basis of your objection is. If there is a better photograph, you can put
6 it into evidence. But at the moment, we've got a witness, when you read
7 his transcript, his evidence is meaningless. With this photograph, it has
8 meaning. Now, what is the problem with it?
9 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we have this
10 photograph of the hotel and that is a Defence Exhibit which was tendered
11 earlier. From here, one has an excellent view of the hotel and the area
12 in front of the hotel. And the photograph which is Prosecution Exhibit
13 152, that photograph is taken from an angle from which the witness cannot
14 establish exactly the place, cannot locate exactly the place where the
15 accused fell. The other photograph is all right.
16 JUDGE HUNT: I wish you had brought it to our attention yesterday,
17 that's all. But I still don't understand the basis of your objection. It
18 will be Exhibit P152.
19 Now, have you got any objection to 155?
20 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] No.
21 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you. The next one will be P155.
22 Now, Mr. Groome, that you've had your attention drawn to this
23 Defence exhibit, do you want to use it in cross-examination?
24 MR. GROOME: I'm actually planning to introduce it, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE HUNT: Good.
1 MR. GROOME: I'd ask now that the witness be shown Prosecution
2 document number 17-11. I'm sorry, Your Honour, this actually is in
3 evidence already; it's Prosecution Exhibit 17-11.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Prosecution?
5 MR. GROOME: Yes, Your Honour. It was introduced on the 17th of
6 September, Your Honour.
7 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, I would ask you to take a look at Prosecution
8 Exhibit 17-11. Do you recognise what's depicted in that photograph? I'd
9 ask you not to make any marks until I ask you to, please.
10 A. No, no.
11 Q. Do you recognise that photograph?
12 A. You can see the Visegrad Hotel and the exact spot where I was.
13 Now, if this photograph were put together with your 155, then - this is
14 what, 17 or 7? - and if we put together those photographs, then it will be
15 quite clear. I -- the first photograph was also clear to me, but it was
16 very difficult for me to explain it to you. Of course I was quite clear
17 about it because that is where I live, that is where I spend my time.
18 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, I'd ask you to make two markings on this exhibit.
19 First, would you please just write your name at the bottom of the exhibit
20 so we know that it's you that's making the markings.
21 A. Very well.
22 Q. Now, I'd ask you also to draw a circle on the spot of ground where
23 your feet were when you were -- you made your observations of Mr.
24 Vasiljevic. Indicate the spot on the ground where you were standing and
25 put your initials inside it.
1 A. This is a small place so I made a mistake, but can I put my
2 initials underneath?
3 Q. If I hear you what you're saying, you're saying that you made a
4 mistake. I'd ask you to draw an "X" through your mistake and draw a
5 circle to indicate the spot where you were standing.
6 A. No, the circle is all right, but it's very small so I can't put my
7 initials in it. Can I put them underneath?
8 Q. Yes, that would be fine.
9 MR. GROOME: I would ask now that that be placed on the ELMO.
10 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, I'd ask if you would take the pointer and hold it at
11 where you were standing.
12 A. [Indicates].
13 Q. And am I correct in describing where you have indicated as the
14 very edge of a walkway underneath the awning; is that correct? I need you
15 to answer verbally for the transcript.
16 A. Yes. Yes, you are quite right.
17 MR. GROOME: Your Honour, I would tender this particular copy of
18 17-11 as 17-11-PM.
19 JUDGE HUNT: Any objection to that, Mr. Tanaskovic?
20 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE HUNT: Exhibit P17-11-PM.
22 MR. GROOME:
23 Q. Now, Mr. Mitrovic, can you give us an idea, what speed was this
24 horse travelling when you saw it travel from this triangular-shaped park
25 to the place where it fell? How fast was Mr. Vasiljevic going?
1 A. Slow. He was going very slowly and the horse was not moving in a
2 straight line because it was refusing to obey so that his hind legs were
3 moving -- I don't know how to explain it -- and he was striking it with
4 that rope. So he was moving slowly. It was raining and I don't really
5 know about what it happens when you put horseshoes, I don't know whether
6 he had them or not, so that -- but it was moving very slowly.
7 Q. Now, you told us that you recognised this horse as a Bosnian
8 mountain horse; is that correct?
9 A. Well, yes, drawing on the logic from the school, that was at a
10 time when I was still very young, but I remembered, yes, that that should
11 be the Bosnian mountain horse.
12 Q. And for those of us not familiar with the terrain of Bosnia,
13 Bosnia in many places is very mountainous and is made up of very many
14 steep slopes; is that not correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And many of those slopes are rocky slopes; correct?
17 A. Yes, of course. If it's a road, then it's not rock, it's macadam
18 or something like that, mixed with earth.
19 Q. But you would agree with me that most mountains and hills in
20 Bosnia are far steeper than the incline in the square, would you not?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Now yesterday during your testimony, if I'm not mistaken, you
23 never told us when you saw this, and my question to you this morning is:
24 When was the first time that you were asked to give a date regarding when
25 you made this observation? When was the first time you were asked to give
1 a date, if you ever were?
2 A. I was asked that when I was giving my statement to lawyer
3 Tanaskovic and I didn't know the date and that is why I said approximately
4 June up to the middle of July; I could not remember the exact date. And
5 that is why, in my statement, there is no date.
6 Q. But in your statement, you did say that it occurred on a Serb
7 religious holiday; correct?
8 A. No, I come from Montenegro so that I don't know much about these
9 holidays. I was told that later on, but I simply don't know about that.
10 Somebody told me that, but I don't know about that and I did not pay any
11 attention, nor did I know that that was a special date until I started
12 making my statement, and in my statement, I said I did not know. So I
13 gave a rather broad answer.
14 Q. You said that somebody told you about that; told you about what?
15 A. Well, there was this conversation about when that had happened, in
16 my school and other places, and then some other people said that Visegrad
17 Serbs are very religious people, that they were serious believers and that
18 those holidays served them as landmarks, as benchmarks, whereas I am an
19 atheist so I don't know that, and they told me that, yes, they could base
20 their reckoning, their recollections on those holidays.
21 Q. And were any of those people that you're referring to, any of
22 those people witnesses in this case?
23 A. It is Witness Ratko or Ratomir Simsic, and we talked about it
24 before we came here and we talked about this and I told him too, I know
25 nothing about religious holidays, so that I don't know.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Q. Now, what you did say to us here today is that it happened
2 sometime, I believe you said from the middle of June up until possibly the
3 middle of July; is that correct?
4 A. No. From the beginning of June up to the middle of the month, but
5 that is my personal opinion. You know, when we start talking about
6 something, then we cannot always agree. Not only in Visegrad because
7 everybody has, of course, his -- has his own angle.
8 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, I want to just read you from the transcript just a
9 few moments ago just to be clear on this issue. In response to one of my
10 questions, you said, "I was asked that when I was giving my statement to
11 lawyer Tanaskovic and I didn't know the date and that is why I said
12 approximately June up to the middle of July. I could not remember the
13 exact date and that is why, in my statement, there is no date."
14 Did you say just a few minutes ago that it could have occurred up
15 until the middle of July?
16 A. No. Beginning of June up to the middle of June, it could have
17 been interpreter's mistake. In July, I was assigned to a completely
18 different place.
19 MR. GROOME: Thank you, Mr. Mitrovic. I have no further
21 JUDGE HUNT: I'm sorry, Mr. Groome, but maybe I've misunderstood
22 that answer. Oh, I see. You had asked him whether it could have occurred
23 up to the middle of July and he said no, only until June. I'm sorry.
24 Yes, any re-examination, Mr. Tanaskovic?
25 Re-examined by Mr. Tanaskovic:
1 Q. [Interpretation] When Mr. Groome asked him, the witness said that
2 in July 1992, he was elsewhere, not where he was before that.
3 My only question is: Where was he? So I'm talking now about July
4 1992; where were you in July 1992?
5 A. In July 1992, I was west of Visegrad, assigned to a school. We
6 provided -- we were guarding Visegrad from an attack from the west and the
7 road. The only exit towards Sarajevo, Pale, or Rogatica, and that was
8 macadam -- no, it wasn't, but it was a rather bad road which went via
9 Rogatica, then Semec, Borika, Rogatica, and so on. And those who took
10 that road, that is, if somebody took that road, then one had to go to take
11 an APC, that is, one needed escort because that road was not safe there.
12 Q. And that means that you were not in Visegrad in July at all?
13 A. Yes.
14 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 Your Honours, now I'd like the witness to be shown the proposed
16 Exhibit 155, to draw that line which he already drew on the Exhibit 152,
17 because this photograph is much clearer, and to show us where he was in
18 front of the hotel.
19 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Tanaskovic, he has already drawn a line on
20 Exhibit 155, showing the path that your client took.
21 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] What I was suggesting, Your
22 Honour, was a line from the spot where the witness showed he was standing
23 to the spot where he saw Mitar Vasiljevic fall.
24 JUDGE HUNT: Well, we better do that with a different coloured
25 pen. We've got red and blue on it now; have you got another colour? A
1 green one.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could you repeat what you want me to
4 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. From the spot where you were standing in front of the hotel to the
6 spot where you marked that Mr. Vasiljevic fell.
7 And also that "X" on the roof of the building, that is the line
8 showing where you saw Vasiljevic for the first time and where you were
10 A. Because there's the angle obstructing the view of the Sipad store,
11 it's very close by. Do you have a ruler or something? Then it's quite
12 visible. If I don't need a ruler, then it will be an approximate line.
13 Q. Go ahead, yes, draw the line.
14 A. This photograph is a bit confusing too. You want me to do it in
16 Q. Yes, in green.
17 A. This photograph is also confusing, you see, because I have to go
18 to the left. Here it is, roughly. The marker is not very good so you
19 can't see the line very well.
20 Q. Can you show that to us now, indicate?
21 A. I was standing here, and I saw Vasiljevic in this direction here,
22 and then he turned back a bit, turned to the left, and was moving in this
23 direction, and then Simsic called out to him. He turned around, and
24 that's where he fell.
25 Q. Could you mark on this photograph the building or, rather, can you
1 tell us whether the house in which Simsic lives can be seen on this
2 photograph, if you know.
3 A. Yes, you can see it. It's just the tiny part of it, a balcony, so
4 I can mark it with an "X-3" if you like.
5 I'm sorry, this marker is no good, can I use the black one? No,
6 you can't see the balcony. That is it. "X-3."
7 Q. So "X-3" is the balcony of Mr. Simsic's house; is that right?
8 A. Yes.
9 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I should like to
10 tender this photograph now, with the added markings, as an exhibit.
11 JUDGE HUNT: It already is an exhibit. The one that he's actually
12 marked is P155/PM.
13 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] I just wanted to suggest that the
14 additional markings be included.
15 Your Honour, I have no further objections, but I would suggest,
16 while the witness is still here, earlier on, a tape was tendered into
17 evidence with this part of Visegrad, the Pionirska Street, by the
18 Prosecution. I think it was tendered on the 9th of October. The number
19 is 332, from 2125 to 2208 minutes, so it's not long. So it shows this
20 part of the town we've been talking about so I think it would be a good
21 idea for us to show it to the witness for him to be able to indicate on
22 that video clip the things he has been telling us about now.
23 JUDGE HUNT: First of all, I do not understand what you are saying
24 about the photograph. The photograph, which is in evidence, has in fact
25 been marked by the witness. So the markings that he has made, the most
1 recent ones at your request, are part of the exhibit. It doesn't have to
2 be re-tendered in order to get those markings into evidence. So I'm
3 afraid I don't understand what you mean when you are re-tendering it.
4 The next thing is, have you given the booth any warning that you
5 wanted this tape played?
6 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] No, I'm afraid not. But we
7 thought it would be necessary because this witness can make things very
8 much clearer.
9 JUDGE HUNT: If you had thought --
10 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] For the benefit of the Court.
11 JUDGE HUNT: If you wanted this played, you should have given
12 somebody a warning about it. These things can't be pulled out of the
13 air. Now, could someone help us with what the exhibit number really is?
14 MR. GROOME: Prosecution Exhibit number 18, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE HUNT: 18, right. Can we have the tape please, Exhibit 18.
16 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] We have a copy with us as well,
17 if necessary, Your Honour.
18 JUDGE HUNT: Is it cued at 2125? These things take time, Mr.
19 Tanaskovic. You really have to assist us better than this. Now, we
20 wanted to cue it at 2125 and it's to play to 2208.
21 Well, we'll have to play it from the beginning because the
22 reference 2125 doesn't appear on any counter that we have in the booth.
23 How far in is it, Mr. Tanaskovic?
24 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] It's about 20 minutes into the
25 tape, as far as I know.
1 JUDGE HUNT: And your copy of it is not cued to start at the right
2 place either; is that so?
3 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] No, I'm afraid not. We were
4 viewing it last night.
5 JUDGE HUNT: I think we'll have to bring this witness back later
6 when it can be lined up, but next time you want anything like this done,
7 you must have it ready. You must warn either the Prosecution or the court
8 deputy to have the thing ready and cued at the right place. We simply
9 don't have time to waste 20 minutes, waiting here for it to come up.
10 So, sir, I'm afraid you will have to wait --
11 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. May I say
12 straight away that the next witness is Simsic, so we will need the tape
13 again for him and thank you very much for telling us what we should do,
14 but I wish to notify you in advance that we will need the tape for him
16 JUDGE HUNT: With some prescience, the booth operator believes he
17 might have it at the right spot, so he's going to play it to see if he has
18 it at the right spot and you can show it so this witness. Let's have a
20 [Videotape played]
21 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] That's it. It's quite right,
22 exactly that.
23 A. That's exactly the place where I saw Mitar. You can see it
24 clearly. If you could wind it back a bit and then stop. Can I show you
25 anything; can I point to places?
1 JUDGE HUNT: It would be impossible for to you point to places,
2 I'm afraid, sir.
3 Now, is that all you wanted to show or do you want more of it?
4 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] This is the part of the park
5 where the witness saw Mr. Vasiljevic, and you can see the street going
6 towards the hotel, precisely what the witness couldn't show you a moment
7 ago to show you where he spotted him the first time and where exactly he
8 was standing in front of the hotel.
9 A. If we were to rewind the tape a little, then I could explain to
10 you the park and the street, which cannot be seen on the photograph.
11 JUDGE HUNT: Then we'll stop it and rewind it just a little bit to
12 where we started the last time, and we're very grateful to the audio
13 visual people for being able to assist us.
14 Now, may I suggest you let the witness describe it this time
15 because he's the one giving the evidence, not you, Mr. Tanaskovic, so he
16 can describe it to us as the film is being played.
17 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, that's what I had in
18 mind, Your Honour.
19 A. As soon as I see the spot, can I ask them to stop, to stop the
20 tape, and then it will be clearer for you?
21 JUDGE HUNT: You certainly can.
22 [Videotape played].
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Stop it there, please. This is the
24 street to the left, going uphill. Behind the car is the park, and that is
25 the street you can't see on the photograph. Please go on with the tape.
1 [Videotape played]
2 A. Could you stop there, please. Just behind this car is the house
3 of Zoran Stancic, the Beko store should be there, a clothing store, and he
4 was moving in this direction and that was the line I drew from the hotel
5 behind this car.
6 Please play on.
7 [Videotape played]
8 A. And then he turned back, you see, where this car is, next to the
9 traffic sign we just saw, and headed along the main street.
10 Now, you can see the hotel. Could you stop there, please. A
11 little back. A little backward, please.
12 That's why I was saying that this building in front of the hotel
13 on those photographs, you can see the awning of the hotel here. Across
14 the middle of the photograph where the bench is, behind the bench, and
15 there you can see the Sipad store on the corner, and there is the balcony
16 also. You can see the balcony where the teacher Simsic lives. I think
17 it's the second balcony on the top floor.
18 Please play on.
19 JUDGE HUNT: Wait a minute. The place you were standing at the
20 hotel, is that at the very left of the picture at this time?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. You can see a flower bed in
22 front of the hotel that I showed you, and this is the direction which goes
23 across the spot where the bench is and also the shop I showed a moment
25 I heard the noise and the treading of the horse, and I turned
1 around and, as there was no one in the street, I turned around and called
2 him and he came immediately somewhere where the car is, in front of the
3 hotel. That's where he fell. And Ratko saw him when he passed by his
5 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] That's what we wanted to show
6 Your Honour. Thank you, I have no further questions for this witness.
7 JUDGE HUNT: We better keep the tape for the next witness too.
8 Yes, Mr. Groome.
9 MR. GROOME: Just one question arising out of that video.
10 JUDGE HUNT: Yes.
11 Re-cross-examined by Mr. Groome:
12 Q. Mr. Mitrovic, what you're referring to as a park now, we see it in
13 the video tape, back in let's say March of 1992, that wasn't a park, was
15 A. No, there was a mosque there.
16 Q. It was a mosque; correct? Now, for you to have been able to see
17 the things that you're telling us you saw, that mosque would have had to
18 have been knocked down; correct?
19 A. Yes. But I didn't see who knocked it down or anything.
20 Q. When was it knocked down? When was it knocked down?
21 A. I don't know. I know it was destroyed, but I can't remember the
22 date. Whether it was in May or not, I don't know. I know it was in that
23 time period, but I don't know exactly when.
24 MR. GROOME: Thank you, sir.
25 JUDGE HUNT: I'm not sure that I'm clear about the question you
1 asked. Are you suggesting that there was a mosque there at the time the
2 witness says he saw the accused?
3 MR. GROOME: No, Your Honour. I think what the witness has just
4 said is that there was a mosque there in March and sometime in May,
5 sometime before he made his observations, that mosque was knocked down.
6 JUDGE HUNT: I see. Right. Thank you.
7 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour --
8 JUDGE HUNT: Just one moment. You will get a chance to re-examine
9 in a moment.
10 Judge Taya is going to ask a question.
11 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] I see. Thank you.
12 Questioned by the Court:
13 JUDGE TAYA: You said you were not in Visegrad in July 1992. When
14 you left Visegrad?
15 A. Are you asking me?
16 JUDGE TAYA: Yes.
17 A. I said that I was deployed, I think it was Donja Lijeska, three or
18 four kilometres by road, so to the west of Visegrad, across the Drina
19 bridge and up the hill, behind the hotel, the other bank of the river, the
20 left bank of the river.
21 JUDGE TAYA: Yes, but my question is when you left Visegrad, where
22 you were in the latter part of June 1992?
23 A. If I understand correctly, my unit, the one I described yesterday,
24 when it was assigned to the hotel after being given assignments to ensure
25 security at the entrance, we were transferred three or four kilometres
1 back to secure the road, the Visegrad-Rogatica road, so that was our
2 assignment. We covered the area from Visegrad to Donja Lijeska, then
3 there was the Rogatica unit and we were linked up so as to be able to
4 reach Pale and the other places.
5 JUDGE TAYA: Were you in Visegrad until the end of June 1992?
6 JUDGE HUNT: I think, if I may suggest, the question is more
7 directed to when was it that you were transferred or assigned away from
8 the hotel? Can you give us a date in June or July when it was you were
9 last at the hotel?
10 A. I cannot give you the exact date. I don't know. I don't
11 remember. We didn't stay at the hotel long, so after the 20th, the 25th
12 or around the 1st, I just can't remember. But I know that we stayed at
13 the hotel briefly. I don't even know exactly for how many days, I didn't
14 pay attention. I was scared for my own life, so the dates didn't really
15 interest me.
16 JUDGE HUNT: Now, Mr. Tanaskovic, you can re-examine.
17 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Further examined by Mr. Tanaskovic:
19 Q. I would just like the witness to tell us, when he was telling us
20 where he saw Mr. Vasiljevic from, had the mosque already been destroyed
21 when he saw Vasiljevic or not?
22 A. I said that it had been destroyed. The Prosecutor asked me and I
23 confirmed that the mosque had been destroyed. Had there been a mosque
24 there, then only a magician would be able to see through the mosque walls.
25 Q. Does that mean, Mr. Mitrovic, that there was a park or something
1 like the park there?
2 A. I can't remember exactly when the park was laid out, but the
3 mosque was destroyed. Whether there were just the ruins or the park at
4 the time, I can't remember that.
5 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have no more
7 JUDGE HUNT: I should have asked you, Mr. Groome, did you want to
8 ask anything out of Judge Taya's or my questions?
9 MR. GROOME: No, thank you, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you for coming along to give evidence and for
11 the evidence you have given. You are now free to leave.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
13 [The witness withdrew]
14 [The witness entered court]
15 JUDGE HUNT: Now, sir, would you please make the solemn
16 declaration in the document which the court usher is showing you.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
18 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
19 WITNESS: RATOMIR SIMSIC
20 [Witness answered through interpreter]
21 JUDGE HUNT: Sit down, please, sir.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
23 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Tanaskovic.
24 Examined by Mr. Tanaskovic:
25 Q. Mr. Simsic, good morning.
1 A. Good morning.
2 Q. Let us -- I shall begin by asking you to give us your full name
3 and the place and date of your birth.
4 A. My name is Ratomir Simsic. I was born on the 1st of October, 1942
5 in the village of Stanisevac municipality of Visegrad.
6 Q. Tell me, do you have a nickname?
7 A. I do have a nickname. I have had it since practically the day of
8 my birth. I am Ratko or Rale.
9 Q. So you are Ratomir Simsic, called Ratko or Rale; is that it?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Tell us something about your education and what you do.
12 A. I completed the teacher's academy and then I -- teacher's
13 vocational school and then I was an exemplary student at the teacher's
14 academy, so that I am a teacher by profession.
15 Q. Can you tell us, where did you work?
16 A. I worked all over. Do you want me to give you all those places?
17 Q. Yes, please do.
18 A. I spent most of my career in Visegrad and its environs. For two
19 years, I worked in Croatia, in different schools.
20 Q. Can you tell us, what are you doing now?
21 A. Well, for the past 22 months, I have been a pensioner.
22 Q. Can you tell us, when is it that you moved to Visegrad?
23 A. I've lived in Visegrad for a long time; since February 1974.
24 Q. Can you tell us, in June or in 1992 as such, but especially in
25 June, where is it that you lived in Visegrad?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 A. I lived on the main street, Marsala Tita 38. The number, I mean.
2 Q. That is what it was called then?
3 A. Yes, yes. Now it is called King Peter I, number 38 again. I
4 mean, it's the same flat.
5 Q. Could you describe with some detail the building where your flat
7 A. Yes, of course I can because I have lived in that building de jure
8 and de facto for the past 15 or 16 years.
9 Q. Could you describe it then, to us.
10 A. I don't know what.
11 Q. I mean the site. Where the building is.
12 A. Oh, I see. The building is in the very heart of the town, on the
13 square, and it is called the corner building, uga onica. There are three
14 entrances. It is a three-storeyed building, that is, it has two floors, a
15 few flights, not -- downstairs there are some shops next to it and in
16 front of it is the Sipad furniture store. To the left is a grill
17 restaurant and the department store, and to the right is the Visegrad
19 Q. You said that downstairs you have some shops?
20 A. That's right.
21 Q. What shop was it before the war and what is it now?
22 A. Before the war, it was Jugoplastika and now it's Petrofar right
23 below my apartment even though there are some other shops there too.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 A. Not at all.
1 Q. Now, tell me, do you know Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic?
2 A. Absolutely. I know him very well indeed.
3 Q. Tell us, how is it that you came to know him and where?
4 A. Well, I've known him for the past 20 years at least and I know him
5 as a waiter who worked in a number of outlets, in a hotel, different
6 restaurants and other hotels.
7 Q. Now that you mention those restaurants and hotels, can you tell us
8 which company to all they belong to?
9 A. They belonged to UTP Panos, in Visegrad.
10 Q. During the war, did you have any assignment either as a military
11 man or under labour duty in Visegrad or elsewhere?
12 A. Why, yes. I don't know how to put it because I'm an invalid, but
13 I did have an assignment, yes. I was assigned to the bus terminal,
14 Visegradtrans, Visegrad.
15 Q. During that time frame, and I mean 1992 or, more specifically, the
16 middle of that year, that is mid-1992, did you used to see Mr. Mitar
17 Vasiljevic around?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And where?
20 A. I saw him in the former half of June 1992 as a kind of a monitor,
21 as a man who was responsible for the cleanliness of the town, a duty
22 officer in the town.
23 Q. When you say "monitor, man responsible for the cleaning of the
24 town," what does that mean?
25 A. Well, in my personal view - and I make this reservation - he was
1 engaged in the drive to clean the town of broken glass, all sorts of
2 election posters, leaves, branches; that sort of thing.
3 Q. Does that mean that the town was pretty unkempt, pretty neglected
4 in that regard?
5 A. Oh, yes, absolutely.
6 Q. When you say that you used to see Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic as a
7 monitor around, could you see what he was doing and who else was doing it
8 with him?
9 A. I did. Well, as I said, they were collecting and removing this
10 broken glass and old posters and fallen leaves and other refuse.
11 Q. But my question had to do more with who else participated in that?
12 Did you see anyone doing that?
13 A. Well, yes, I did. Every saleswoman worked in front of her shop.
14 That is, none of them was exempt from that.
15 Q. At the time when you saw Mr. Vasiljevic clean and organise the
16 cleaning of streets, can you remember how he was dressed, at least on one
18 A. Yes, of course. He wore a kind of a dark suit.
19 Q. Did he, perhaps, have any weapon on him?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Did he have a hat?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Can you remember if Mr. Vasiljevic, at the time when you saw him
24 in those dark clothes, as you say, did he wear anything else?
25 A. He had a red armband on his left arm. It was about five, six
1 centimetres wide, I think.
2 Q. Did you see or could you see if on this armband which was red, as
3 you say, was there an emblem, a sign of something, a symbol?
4 A. Absolutely none.
5 Q. That means red, just plain red?
6 A. Just plain red.
7 Q. Now, tell me, until when did you used to see Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic
8 do what you told us?
9 A. Right up to the -- to Sunday, which was the 14th of June.
10 Q. Which year?
11 A. Same year, 1992.
12 Q. And what happened that 14th of June, 1992?
13 A. On the 14th of June, 1992, it was a religious holiday, the Holy
15 Q. As far as I know, the orthodox call it the Holy Trinity or the
16 first Trinity.
17 A. I said it is the first Trinity or the Holy Trinity because there
18 are three Trinities; Monday, Tuesday, the second and the third.
19 Q. Sir, on the 14th, it was the first Holy Trinity, on the 15th, it
20 was the second, and on the 16th, it was the third?
21 A. That's right.
22 Q. A moment ago, I asked you what happened on that 14th of June,
23 1992, because you said you used to see him until that date. Now, what is
24 it that happened on that 14th of June?
25 A. Well, I've just told you, it was the first Trinity, which is a
1 major Christian religious holiday.
2 Q. Mr. Simsic, I am asking you in relation to Mr. Vasiljevic.
3 A. Oh, I see. May I ask you a question?
4 Q. No, you may not.
5 A. All right.
6 Q. Where were you on that 14th of June, 1992?
7 A. On the 14th of June, 1992 I was at home, or better said, in the
9 Q. You mean that flat which you described in the beginning of your
10 testimony, is it?
11 A. Yes, at the flat where I lived then and where I live now.
12 Q. And then what happened? You were at home.
13 A. Yes. I was at home in the flat and I was sitting and reading
14 newspapers, watching television, and my son, the youngest one, had just
15 run into the kitchen from the room and said to me, and I quote, "Daddy,
16 please come and look at this wonder." "Oh, come on, son, what is there to
17 see?" Because there was nothing nice to see, it was all very monotonous.
18 But I went out onto the balcony, and I saw Mr. Mitar on a horse, riding
19 down the street towards the hotel, the Visegrad Hotel.
20 Q. And at that moment, when you came out onto the balcony and saw
21 him, where was he in relation to your balcony?
22 A. He was halfway between the balcony and the place where the event
23 or the accident took place.
24 Q. Your son who had called you out onto the balcony to see that
25 wonder, what is his name?
1 A. I think I said it, but perhaps I didn't. His name is Bojan.
2 Q. And at that time, how old was he?
3 A. He was 12, about 12.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Tanaskovic, remember to pause before you ask the
5 question. You are coming in over the translation.
6 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. In what direction was Mr. Vasiljevic moving, riding that horse?
8 A. Well, I've said it; he was moving down the street because there is
9 a slight inclination, a slight slope, and he was moving towards the
10 Visegrad Hotel.
11 Q. And can you tell us what happened next?
12 A. Well, I can say that it was raining at the time, that it was late
13 afternoon, at about dusk, but the visibility was still good, and I cried
14 out, "Good for you, Mitar." At about the same time, Mitar fell off the
15 horse, and the horse fell over Mitar.
16 Q. Which means that the horse was over Mr. Vasiljevic, pressing him
18 A. Yes. Yes. His whole body was on him.
19 Q. Did you hear, as you were watching it from your balcony, did you
20 hear Mitar Vasiljevic cry out, scream, moan; anything?
21 A. Yes. Yes. He was crying out for help.
22 Q. And did anyone go to him?
23 A. Yes, somebody did but I don't know who. And all I heard was his
24 words, "Don't touch me. If you can, get the ambulance."
25 Q. And you cannot remember who is it that went to him to help him?
1 A. No, but I guess -- I suppose it was somebody from the Visegrad
2 Hotel because it is only 50 metres away.
3 Q. And did you then go on watching that event from your balcony?
4 A. No, because I was very sorry, I simply cannot bear to watch anyone
6 Q. And do you know what happened then to Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic?
7 A. Well, I do. I was told that by others, that in a very short
8 while, after a very short delay, somebody from the health centre arrived
9 in an ambulance.
10 Q. And while you were on the balcony, could you see what happened to
11 the horse whom Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic had been riding?
12 A. Yes, of course. The horse just leapt up like a doe, it moved over
13 to the other side onto the pavement and stood there, and after the
14 transport, that is, other people told me that he seemed to be petrified
15 there, rooted to the pavement.
16 Q. Now, Mr. Simsic, if you can remember, will you please tell us what
17 colour, if you happened to notice or if you remember, what colour was the
18 horse that Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic had been riding?
19 A. Yes, of course. It was black or grey; dark.
20 Q. And if we -- and in terms of height or the size, what would you
21 say, what horse was that, from that point of view?
22 A. I remember it very well; it was an ordinary horse, small, mountain
23 horse, dark.
24 Q. And at the time when you saw Mr. Vasiljevic riding, do you
25 remember what he was wearing?
1 A. I said that a long time ago. I said that he had a grey suit on, a
2 dark suit.
3 Q. And when you saw Mr. Vasiljevic riding, you say it was raining.
4 Did Mr. Vasiljevic have a raincoat, a hat, or some other clothes of that
5 type, an overcoat?
6 A. Well, the rain came in waves, but he did not have either an
7 overcoat or a hat or anything. He was just wearing that suit.
8 Q. When you saw him riding, did you see something else on him,
9 something out of the ordinary, something that would draw your attention,
10 or not?
11 A. Well, I said I saw that red ribbon on the left arm, and otherwise,
12 nothing in particular. A red armband, red colour, I mean.
13 Q. Mr. Simsic, you -- this is the first time you said, because you
14 said earlier that you saw him wearing it at the time when he was cleaning
15 the streets, that's why I asked you.
16 A. Okay.
17 Q. And did you see him have something in his hands, or rather, when
18 he fell, did you see whether there were any other objects there on the
20 A. In his right hand, he held a rather long, a rather thick rope.
21 Q. And what did he do with that rope?
22 A. He was trying to egg the horse on, striking the horse to speed it
24 Q. And when you saw that, how fast or how slow was the horse moving?
25 A. Well, neither too fast nor too slow.
1 JUDGE HUNT: It would be an appropriate time, Mr. Tanaskovic.
2 We'll adjourn now until 11.30.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
4 --- Recess taken at 11.00 a.m.
5 --- On resuming at 11.33 a.m.
6 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, Mr. Tanaskovic.
7 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Q. Mr. Simsic, let us continue where we broke off at 11.00.
9 A. Yes, please do.
10 Q. I asked you a moment ago whether you noticed, when you saw Mitar
11 Vasiljevic on horseback, any objects on him and you said, except for the
12 rope, you hadn't noticed anything. I would like to know when this
13 happened on the asphalt road, did you see anything else next to the horse,
14 or nothing, did you see nothing?
15 A. I don't know what you mean. I didn't see --
16 Q. So you didn't see anything else?
17 A. I did not.
18 Q. Do you know what a megaphone or loudspeaker is?
19 A. Of course.
20 Q. Did you, perhaps, notice on Vasiljevic such a loudspeaker after he
22 A. No, not at all. I did not. Nothing like that.
23 Q. When we were describing a moment ago the horse that Mr. Vasiljevic
24 was riding, I omitted to ask you whether the horse had a saddle or a
25 wooden saddle that we call samar or a normal, leather saddle?
1 A. You don't need to explain to me what is a samar and what is a
2 sedlu because I am -- come from the villages. No, he didn't have
3 anything. He was riding bareback. The horse didn't have a saddle or a
4 pack saddle.
5 Q. In the course of your testimony, you told us what time of day it
6 was when this incident or accident happened, as you described it. Could
7 you tell us roughly about what time it could have been?
8 A. Yes. I said it was afternoon, before dusk, so it was between 4.00
9 and 5.00 p.m.
10 Q. You said that you left the balcony, that you went inside and
11 didn't continue watching. Did you hear afterwards or learn in one way or
12 another what happened to Mr. Vasiljevic after that, or rather, did he
13 suffer any injuries as a result of this?
14 A. I've told you that too. I said that I learnt from others very
15 shortly after the event because I couldn't watch his suffering because I,
16 too, long ago in 1974 broke a leg and I know what it means and it's very
17 painful. At least, it was for me.
18 Q. And then what did you learn about his injuries?
19 A. I learned that he broke his leg. I didn't know which, but I later
20 learnt about that. I thought that he had broken his back too, but I was
21 sure that he must have had a broken leg or arm or something like that.
22 Q. Did you hear or learn where he was treated for his injuries?
23 A. Yes, I did. I heard and I can claim that he was treated at the
24 General Hospital in Uzice.
25 Q. After this event, at some time later, did you see Mr. Vasiljevic
2 A. Well, yes, I did because I had been advised by doctors to walk a
3 lot because of my condition, so I walk down the Drina towards Vojvode
4 Stepe Street, where his house is, and further on, towards the Vilina Vlas
5 motel, and I saw him on crutches that same year.
6 Q. You mean in front of his house?
7 A. Yes, as I said, in Vojvode Stepe.
8 Q. Very well, thank you. Let us go back to the Sunday of the 14th of
9 June, 1992. Can you tell us now on the basis of what are you claiming and
10 remembering that it was the 14th of June, 1992?
11 A. I can because I'm saying for the third time, I'm telling you about
12 this religious custom. It always falls in June, this Trinity, and the
13 first day of the Trinity is always observed on a Sunday and I remember
14 well that that was the date because on the third of the Trinity, the 16th,
15 on a Tuesday in 1992, as my Slava is St. John The Baptist, that is my
16 patron saint's day, I didn't have an icon, I had to take it to the church
17 to be seen by Father Rajko, the priest, with his signature and his stamp
18 on the back of the icon, indicating that the icon had been blessed.
19 Q. You said that you had the icon blessed, is that a custom among the
20 Serbs or is it up to each individual to decide what to do?
21 A. That's a good question because it was a sin to celebrate without
22 an icon and an oil lamp, but if you couldn't purchase one, God would
23 forgive you. But as I had purchased one, Father Rajko advised me to leave
24 it in the church for a couple of hours for him to bless it, and for me
25 this was a special experience because I know now that I am celebrating my
1 patron saint's day the way it should be celebrated, properly. So it is a
2 custom, in answer to your question, and that is how it should be.
3 Q. When you mentioned Father Rajko just now, who did you have in
5 A. I was referring to one of three priests who were working in that
6 church. Of course, I wasn't referring to my father, because I don't even
7 remember him, I was too small. What I meant was the priest Rajko.
8 Q. So the priest who did this, his name is Rajko; is that right?
9 A. His name is Rajko -- oh, please, help me with the surname.
10 Ceticomin [phoen] -- Cvjetkovic, I'm sorry, if it's important, Cvjetkovic,
12 Q. To clarify the word "bless," or "consecrate," can we call it a
13 kind of blessing?
14 A. Yes, certainly, because as I was saying, one couldn't celebrate
15 your patron saint's day properly. Better to celebrate it in one way or
16 another, but the most important symbols are this icon and the oil lamp.
17 Q. Very well, thank you. Let us move on to another area. A moment
18 ago, you were telling us that you were watching the event from your
19 balcony. Could you now describe in your own words the spot where you saw
20 Mr. Vasiljevic fall off his horse and how the horse fell at the same time.
21 A. I'm sorry, I told you a moment ago, but I can repeat it. This
22 happened on the right-hand side of the carriageway on the square, the side
23 closer to my building and the Sipad furniture store. And if you are
24 looking down the street, then you have the catering establishment grill
25 and the department store; and further forward, on the right-hand side, is
1 the Visegrad Hotel. In relation to my balcony, I said it was halfway
2 between my balcony and the place of the accident. So viewed from the
3 balcony, it was some 20 or 30 metres away.
4 Q. When I asked you this, you were telling us that Mr. Vasiljevic was
5 moving towards the hotel, so to his right was your balcony, the furniture
6 store, and to the left was the grill restaurant. Who owned it?
7 A. It belonged to the catering and tourist enterprise Bosna, that's
8 what it used to be. Now it is the TP Visegrad that is the owner.
9 Q. So it's on the left-hand side?
10 A. Yes, and further on, on the left-hand side, is the department
11 store. On the right-hand side is my building, the Sipad furniture store
12 and, further on, the hotel.
13 JUDGE HUNT: Wait. Just wait.
14 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. In front of this furniture store, Sipad that you called it?
16 A. Sipad.
17 Q. There is a parking lot or something like that, isn't there?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. What is to the left of that parking space?
20 A. To the left of the parking space, as I was saying, is the grill
21 belonging to the commercial enterprise Visegrad, and in front of the grill
22 is a tiny mini-park and at the end of that park, towards the hotel, is a
23 billboard with notices about films showing.
24 Q. In relation to all these landmarks that you mentioned, where would
25 you place the spot of the fall?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 A. The spot of the fall is on the right-hand side of the road facing
2 the hotel because there is a path for unloading large lorries with
3 furniture and that is also their parking space belonging to the furniture
4 shop. That's as much as I can say.
5 Q. Would you be prepared to identify your building and your balcony
6 from which you were watching what you've just told us about?
7 A. Of course I can see it.
8 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Could I ask Your Honours for this
9 short video clip to be shown to this witness for the witness to identify
10 his building, if he can.
11 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, thank you. Starting from the same spot, thank
13 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] From the same spot is possible,
14 but he's just talking about his own balcony and his own building. Maybe
15 we can just show him his building, that's a bit later on than the place
16 where we started showing the tape a moment ago.
17 JUDGE HUNT: I think it would be simpler for the booth to start
18 from the same position.
19 [Videotape played]
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There it is. Could you stop that?
21 Could you stop there?
22 JUDGE HUNT: Would you stop it and wind it back just slightly,
23 thanks. If you could wind it back. Now stop. Is that where you wanted
24 it, Mr. Tanaskovic?
25 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes, Your Honour.
1 Q. Mr. Simsic, do you recognise on this shot any of the places that
2 you described today?
3 A. I like this shot very much. It's an excellent shot. I can see my
4 balcony here, I can see another building that I didn't mention - I don't
5 think it's important; the old hotel - and the new hotel, you can't see it
6 very well, it's further forward. You can't see the grill or the
7 department store, but I don't think that's so important. You can almost
8 see the actual spot where this happened. You can't see the pedestrian
9 crossing and the carriageway completely.
10 Q. Mr. Simsic, will you please show us which is the balcony you were
11 telling us about today.
12 A. How can I show it to you?
13 Q. Well, explain. You can see the building, you can see balconies;
14 explain it.
15 A. Well, I am in the building with the green facade, or rather, next
16 to it, and it's the second balcony beneath the roof. Out of these four
17 balconies, there's the first and then the second, and that is where
18 Jugoplastika used to be, and above it is my balcony.
19 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] So it's on the top floor, the
20 second in line. I think that is clear now. I think, for the record, the
21 witness has indicated the balcony.
22 JUDGE HUNT: Do you want the video any longer?
23 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. Thank you.
24 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
25 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation]
1 I have no further questions, Your Honour. Thank you.
2 JUDGE HUNT: Cross-examination, Mr. Ossogo.
3 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
4 Cross-examined by Mr. Ossogo:
5 Q. Mr. Ratomir Simsic, I am trial attorney for the Prosecution and we
6 will dwell for a few minutes on the testimony you have given regarding the
7 events you eye witnessed on the Marsala Street, number 38.
8 First of all, could you give us more precision regarding your
9 relationship with Mr. Mitar that you said you knew very well. I would
10 like to ask you for how long you have known Mr. Mitar. Could you tell us
12 A. What I said once I am not denying. I have known him for some 20
14 Q. You knew him as a neighbour or as a friend? Did you become
15 friends or did you have any other particular kind of relationship?
16 A. As a friend.
17 Q. You said that you saw him often during the war and before. Where
18 did you see him?
19 A. I would see him mostly while he was working at the hotel, at his
21 Q. You never visited him at home?
22 A. No, never.
23 Q. And he never visited you at home?
24 A. No, never.
25 Q. How frequently would you meet, shall we say per week or per month,
1 over a period of 20 years?
2 A. Occasionally, and by chance.
3 Q. Do you know his wife, possibly?
4 A. Yes, I did know her extremely well.
5 Q. Did you know the other members of his family?
6 A. I know his daughter who went to school with my son Bojan - they
7 are the same generation, the son I just mentioned - and I know his father.
8 Q. Apart from his daughter, do you know what other children he had?
9 A. I know he also had a son called Nikola. He was younger than his
10 sister. I think his name was Nikola. Nikola and Nikolina.
11 Q. We are going to dwell for a moment on the places where the events
12 that we are discussing occurred. You said that you were living in Marsala
13 Street until the month of May 1993, if I'm not mistaken. When did you
14 move there, or rather, how long have you been living in the apartment that
15 has just been shown you on the video clip?
16 A. I moved to that apartment on the 16th of June, 1986. That is when
17 I was given this small, one-room apartment by my school. Then I left that
18 apartment in 1993 and then went back to that same apartment exactly on the
19 9th of November, 2000.
20 Q. So you claim that you really know that area, the neighbourhood of
21 that house, all around it?
22 A. You mean on the photograph, on the video?
23 Q. Yes, but in the first place, I mean that area, that is, the
24 streets, the houses, the shops there, the geographic area, the one in
25 which you live.
1 A. Very well, indeed. I know it and I watched the scene of the
2 incident as if in the palm of my hand.
3 Q. And you shared your flat, Mr. Simsic, with whom?
4 A. I live there with my wife and my two sons, Bojan and Zeljko, and
5 my wife's name is Bogdanka, and I still live there with that same family.
6 Q. Could you describe that flat to us; how many rooms did it have?
7 A. Well, I already said it's a very small flat. It has about 38 to
8 40 metres square, a kitchen, one room, a front room, the bathroom, the
9 balcony, and a cellar, and that's it.
10 Q. And when you wanted to watch television with your family, for
11 instance, where would that be?
12 A. Well, I have to repeat it once again. I was in the kitchen. I
13 have already said it once. We were in the kitchen, my wife and I, and my
14 children were watching television in that one room near the balcony.
15 Q. I mean generally, would you gather in the kitchen to watch
16 television? Where is it that you watch television, where did you have
17 your television set?
18 A. Well, you know what, since that flat is definitely too small - we
19 are four of us - but we usually say the more the merrier and, to this day,
20 whether I like it or not, I watch the television, I read the newspapers in
21 the kitchen. It's not easy, but what can we do?
22 Q. You said that you were under medical treatment and that you had to
23 take walks around the place, which means you knew the area; you knew the
24 town and the area, the Vilina Vlas Hotel and other places; is that
1 A. Why, of course it is. I know the town very well because I have
2 been living there since 1974; that is more than 20 years. More than 20
4 Q. In other words, you are abreast of all the things that happen in
5 the town, I mean, of all the important events, of all the things that
6 matter in the town, aren't you?
7 A. Well, yes, you could put it that way.
8 Q. And in April, May, or June, did you also observe the movement of
9 buses or trucks, transporting people from one point - that is, from the
10 town of Visegrad - to some other point, to some destination which you
11 perhaps knew, perhaps didn't know?
12 A. Well, there were not all that many vehicles. Did I observe
13 anything special, anything out of the ordinary? No, I did not.
14 Q. You did not observe large-scale transport of Muslims in trucks
15 towards some known or unknown destinations?
16 A. I did not.
17 Q. You said at times you went to the Vilina Vlas Hotel. Did you
18 observe there certain things happen which would seem to you not quite
20 A. Well, let me tell you, the last time I went to Vilina Vlas, I mean
21 before those events as you call them in 1985, and I was undergoing
22 rehabilitation there because I had an open fracture on my right lower leg,
23 and since then and to this day, I never went there.
24 Q. But at the time when you were there, you did not see anything
25 abnormal there?
1 A. No. Well, at that time, everything was fine. I went there to be
2 treated and I was treated well, but that was a long time ago. It was the
3 autumn of 1985.
4 Q. You told us that the Visegrad Hotel was quite near your flat; is
5 that correct?
6 A. It is.
7 Q. Could you observe the movement of paramilitaries or regular troops
8 or large numbers of persons or trucks in front of that hotel during the
10 A. I did not, believe me, because I barely made it to this Tribunal,
11 although it is a privilege for me, because my leg is in a disastrous
12 state, my health is in a very poor state. I have to rest my leg and that
13 is why I retired early, that is, I receive a disability pension.
14 Q. Mr. Simsic, you said that Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic was responsible for
15 the maintenance, for the cleanliness of the streets of the town; is that
17 A. Yes, it is.
18 Q. And do you know that because you saw him doing that or because he
19 told you that?
20 A. Because I saw it from the balcony. When I would go out to limp to
21 some place and get some bread, perhaps, or some other groceries.
22 Q. And he did not tell you anything about it?
23 A. I said that he never said anything, never.
24 Q. And you do not happen to know whether he did it of his own will or
25 whether he was assigned to the job?
1 A. I do not know. I assume that he did it of his own will, but that
2 job may have been assigned to him. I don't know.
3 Q. Mr. Simsic, we shall now move to an important point in this
4 examination and it has to do with Mr. Vasiljevic's fall off the horse
5 which you described to us. Will you please confirm to us, when did that
7 A. Well, for the umpteenth time, I will say that -- I shall repeat
8 it: It happened on Sunday, the 14th of June 1992, between 1400 and 1600.
9 Q. So you say it was between 2.00 and 4.00 p.m.?
10 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, he has said that. Please get on with it.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Excuse me, excuse me, please.
12 Between 1600 and 1700. Between 4.00 and 5.00; it was a slip of the
13 tongue. I know I made a statement earlier and I do know that it was
14 between 1600 and 1700 and you can take it as you like. It was between
15 1600 and 1700. Besides, I'm suffering from depression. I may have said
16 it, but it was a slip of the tongue.
17 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Yes, precisely, that is what you said; between 4.00 and 5.00, and
19 that is why I wanted you to confirm it.
20 A. My apologies.
21 Q. And you described to us how did this come to pass. I'd like you
22 to tell us something to -- you said the visibility was not particularly
23 good because there was a lot -- there was heavy rain that day; is that
25 A. No, that is not how it was. The visibility was fine. There was
1 no fog. It was not twilight. Even had it been at dusk, there would be
2 street lighting but there was no street lighting because it was still
3 light. Yes, true, it rained but not that much. Not to prevent me to see
4 some 30 metres in front of me. I could see even as far as the bridge, as
5 far as the hotel perfectly, even beyond that.
6 Q. So you tell us that, in spite of this heavy rain, you could see
7 perfectly what was going on in front of your balcony?
8 A. Yes, that is right.
9 JUDGE HUNT: I'm a bit worried about your inclusion of "in spite
10 of this heavy rain." The witness hasn't accepted that at all. He said --
11 you asked a question, "There was heavy rain that day; is that correct?"
12 Answer: "No, that is not how it was." And then he said, "Yes, true, it
13 rained but not that much."
14 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] That's right, but in the
15 interpretation that I received, when it said it rained, I assumed that it
16 was more than just an ordinary rain but now the witness confirms that,
17 however, the visibility was nonetheless good.
18 Thank you, Mr. President.
19 Q. Mr. Simsic, please; you were told what had happened by your son,
20 isn't it?
21 A. Yes, that is so.
22 Q. What did he tell you exactly?
23 A. He ran into the room -- no, sorry, into the kitchen from the room
24 and said, "Dad, please come to see this wonder of wonders but come
25 straight away." And I obeyed him and made those few steps and saw what I
2 Q. And why is it that this son called it a wonder of all wonders? Why
3 did he describe it that way?
4 A. Well, I will tell you. To him - and even me, and I was born in a
5 village - it wasn't really a common sight, I mean, to see a man riding a
6 horse. And that's it. That was interesting, unusual.
7 Q. Couldn't it also be the fact to see somebody riding a horse, on
8 horseback, while it rained, didn't it seem strange to you that somebody
9 would be out in the rain?
10 A. No. No. He would have said that even if the sun was shining,
11 even if it were stiflingly hot or at any time of the day, at any time,
12 because, believe me, he had never seen a horse before that, so that was to
13 him a surprise. Even for me who was born in a village, I was always happy
14 when I saw those farm animals and it was nice. It was nice for me to see
15 again a horse and somebody riding a horse.
16 Q. According to you, was Mitar Vasiljevic a Serb or a Muslim?
17 A. Well, it's a very funny question. Of course he's a Serb.
18 Q. Thank you. And yet you told us that these events, that is, his
19 fall off the horse happened on a Serb religious holiday. Would it be just
20 one of the holidays or an important holiday?
21 A. Well, let me tell you: As far as I know, the major holidays are
22 Slavas, 90 per cent, and that is not a Slava but it is -- in the
23 religious, in the Christian calendar, it is a red letter day, so it is a
24 day when one does not work, especially since it is Sunday. But one should
25 not work on any of these three holy days of the Holy Trinity, so that is
1 my answer.
2 Q. Isn't there another Serb holiday, a general one such as Holy
3 Trinity, in June?
4 A. Apart from the Holy Trinity, yes, true, there is another major
5 Serb holiday which falls on the 28th of June, and that is the St. Vitus
7 Q. And could you please give us the date of that holiday?
8 A. Well, I've just said it; 28th of June. Always. Every year. I
9 mean, it's not a moveable holiday, but the Holy Trinity is a moveable
11 Q. You tell us that this is -- that Holy Trinity is a moveable
12 holiday, that is, it could also be some other month, not June only?
13 A. Yes. It can be in late May or perhaps early July. I said it's a
14 moveable holiday, but St. Vitus's Day always falls on the 28th of June.
15 There are a number of holidays. My Slava is on the 20th of January,
16 always. And there are other Slavas like that.
17 Q. So you tell us that that Holy Trinity could also be in late May or
18 early July or the beginning of June. Could you tell us which time frame
19 do you have in mind? That is, how many days, within how many days could
20 this holiday take place?
21 A. Well, had I known that you'd be asking me that, I would have
22 brought the church calendars for the past 20 years. I said that the Holy
23 Trinity could be sometime in late May or in May and in the beginning in
24 early July. All during those years.
25 Q. You also said, Mr. Simsic, that you went to have your icon blessed
1 by a priest on the occasion of the Holy Trinity. What made you go and
2 seek the blessing of your icon on that particular date? Is it because you
3 considered it a major holiday?
4 A. You know what, I said that it was a sin that I had not done that
5 before. I could have done it in the morning or at noon or in the evening
6 on any day, on any ordinary day. The important thing is to have your icon
7 blessed whenever, but it just so happened that I went to do that on the
8 first day of Holy Trinity, and to put it simply, I'm happy that I did it
9 on that particular day, but it wouldn't really matter had I done it before
10 that or after that. Well, I had I wish I'd done it a year or two before
11 that, but it's better late than never. So that is my answer.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, Mr. Domazet.
13 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I noticed an error in
14 the transcript and it could be important, and that is in this line here,
15 18 line, it says, "I went to do that on the first day of Holy Trinity."
16 The witness did not talk about the first day, but about the first Trinity
17 so he never mentioned the word "day."
18 JUDGE HUNT: Did he mention "holy"?
19 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes.
20 JUDGE HUNT: You say it's not the first day of Holy Trinity.
21 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] That's right. But he did not say
22 what it says here, "the first day."
23 JUDGE HUNT: Well, Mr. Ossogo, if this is going to be important,
24 you better get it cleared up.
25 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Mr. Simsic, you heard your counsel's objection and that of the
2 President. Could you please confirm to us what you just said, that is,
3 was it -- when did you -- on what day did you go to have your icon blessed
4 by the priest during this holiday, the Holy Trinity?
5 A. Yes, I can do that. It was the Third Trinity, the 16th, of 1992.
6 Q. And regarding the date which interests us, and that is the day of
7 the fall off the horse, was it before or after that?
8 A. Could you repeat the question, please?
9 Q. The day when you went to have your icon blessed, could you tell us
10 whether that was after the event, that is, after the fall from horseback
11 or before the fall?
12 A. It was after the fall, after the fall, because the fall occurred
13 on Sunday, and I went to have the icon blessed on Tuesday, the 16th of
14 June. That's it.
15 Q. Your Slava is on what day?
16 A. The 20th of January, always.
17 Q. Could you tell us, or rather, could you confirm that this Holy
18 Trinity event was an optional one for you, to celebrate the Holy Trinity?
19 A. Well, I'll answer that question in this way: It is not my patron
20 saint's day, it is not my Slava, but one should not do any work on those
21 three days, in the fields or anything like that. If the Holy Trinity
22 falls during the fast, then you have to eat appropriate food, fish and the
23 like. I don't know if I have answered your question.
24 Q. So it is not well seen to work in the fields. Could you tell us
25 your opinion regarding the fact that you saw Mr. Mitar on horseback while
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 it was raining. What is your opinion of that during a religious festival?
2 A. That has nothing to do with a religious festival. Riding a horse
3 is not the same as working in the field or in an orchard or in the
4 meadows. It occurred in the street. It could have happened somewhere
5 else on the road, outside town or closer. A horse is still a means of
6 transportation in our country, particularly among villagers where there
7 are no proper roads and no cars and so on.
8 Q. During the 20 years that you have seen Mr. Mitar, have you seen
9 him on horseback before this?
10 A. No, never.
11 Q. Didn't it seem strange to you to see him on horseback on that
12 particular day?
13 A. I looked out of curiosity. I told you that I come from the
14 villages. I like animals. And I hadn't seen someone on horseback for a
15 long time because I hadn't been in the countryside for a long time. I've
16 been living in town for many years. That is my answer.
17 Q. Where is your son Bojan, Mr. Simsic?
18 A. Bojan is part of my household; he is at home.
19 Q. Does he recall this event as he was the first, apparently, to eye
20 witness it?
21 A. Of course he does.
22 Q. What was your reaction, please, Mr. Simsic, when Mr. Mitar fell
23 off his horse?
24 A. I have already told you: I was very sorry for him. I could tell
25 by his scream that he must have broken something, a leg or an arm or his
1 spine, and I'm a compassionate person, I couldn't watch this and I went
2 back into the kitchen where I had come from.
3 Q. According to the description you gave of religious festivals, it
4 could follow that there was a certain degree of piety on your part
5 regarding the village's customs. Don't you think it would have been
6 normal for you to have reacted and, seeing what happened, to help your
7 friend whom you knew for 20 years?
8 A. I couldn't go down. I told you I found it hard. I just couldn't
9 watch it. I couldn't watch a man in that condition because I had been
10 through almost the same injury. I broke my right leg, and he broke his
11 left. I know what pain this involves. Others came, an ambulance arrived.
12 I'm no doctor or a witch doctor, so what could I do?
13 Q. Did you have a telephone within reach?
14 A. Yes, I had one at home.
15 Q. Did you -- did it occur to you to call Mrs. Vasiljevic, whom you
16 knew, perhaps, or a relative or a friend or the hospital?
17 A. While I was on the balcony, I heard that the medical centre had
18 been informed, so there was no need for me to call his wife or friend or
19 anyone else.
20 Q. So you left your balcony, having seen this incident, or did you
21 stay on the balcony?
22 A. I told you, I went inside, through the room, into the kitchen.
23 Q. Did you ask a member of your family - your wife or one of the
24 children - to go down to see what was going on?
25 A. No, I didn't.
1 Q. Do you have any explanation for being sensitive to this type of
3 A. Everyone is sensitive, especially the small one, Bojan. He's very
4 sick. Even the older boy is not of much better health, his older brother.
5 Q. Going back, Mr. Simsic, to your Slava. You appeared to have told
6 us, and that is why we asked you the question the second time, that it
7 took place on the 16th of June, 1992, that year, that is, on the third day
8 of the saint Trinity holiday. Maybe there's a confusion in your mind
9 between this festival, that is, your Slava, and this second religious
10 festival that you referred to?
11 A. I don't know how many times I have to repeat the same things. My
12 Slava is on the 20th of January. I said that this Trinity were not
13 Slavas, that they were a major religious holiday and there are three
14 Trinities. The first Trinity is always on a Sunday, always on a Sunday.
15 I am saying this for the second time. The second Trinity on Monday and
16 the third on Tuesday, so I really don't know what it is I said and then
17 misspoke or something. Would you tell me, please?
18 Q. No, Mr. Simsic, it's simply to make sure of the dates because,
19 even regarding the time of day, there was some minor differences.
20 A. That was just a slip of the tongue.
21 Q. Could you please tell us whether what you said to Mr. Mitar, what
22 you cried out to Mr. Mitar when you saw him from the balcony, could have
23 been the cause of his fall from the horse?
24 A. I think not. Probably the horse didn't have his horseshoes on and
25 he slipped because there was a mild slope and it was slippery because of
1 the rain. That is my own assessment. I don't see why the horse would
2 fall because I cried out. Why would -- if he wasn't afraid of vehicles
3 passing, why would he have been scared by my call? That is my opinion.
4 Q. The moment of the fall, did you hear cries from Mr. Vasiljevic or
5 other people or any precise indication as to what needed to be done to
6 assist him?
7 A. When Mitar fell off the horse, someone - I'm saying someone; one
8 of the passersby - ran up to lift him and he said, "Don't touch me," as if
9 he was in great pain. And I believe him because I went through it myself.
10 And he said, "Call an ambulance." That was the reason why I didn't go
11 down. First of all, my own feelings, I just can't watch other people
12 suffering, and then I felt at ease with myself because he said, "Call an
13 ambulance," and this person who ran up to lift him probably immediately
14 called the medical centre. That's as much as I know.
15 Q. So you distinctly heard the words he uttered?
16 A. I did, because he cried out very loudly. It was a scream, in
18 Q. Could you tell us roughly the distance between your balcony and
19 the incident, comparing it to this room? How many times would it be the
20 length of this room? You mentioned 30 or 50 metres or something like
22 A. I'll tell you straight away; about two lengths of this courtroom.
23 Lengths. I wish to underline that; lengths.
24 Q. You said it was raining.
25 A. Yes.
1 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter apologises, I didn't quite hear.
2 A. Yes, it was raining. It was -- the drops were fine and dense, but
3 there wasn't a storm. It was falling quietly.
4 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
5 Q. So after hearing these words, you went inside; is that right?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Without running to help your friend.
8 A. I didn't. I told you. He cried out. One of the passersby
9 immediately went up to him to lift him but he said, "Don't touch me." He
10 cried out in pain. He said, "Don't touch me, just call an ambulance."
11 And I heard him say that, and someone probably went to the hotel to call
12 the medical centre, to telephone them. And my conscience was at ease
13 because I went -- and then I went inside. In addition to my feelings of
14 compassion because I had also fractured a leg, only it was the other leg,
15 but that doesn't matter.
16 Q. How much time passed between the moment you saw the incident from
17 the balcony and the moment you went inside again, into your apartment?
18 A. Not even five minutes.
19 Q. How much time passed until the first person came to assist Mr.
20 Mitar on the spot that you told us about?
21 A. The person ran up to him the moment he fell, one of the passersby,
22 as soon as he fell; immediately.
23 Q. Did other people come after that one?
24 A. No, I didn't see them. I assume the person called up the medical
25 centre and they arrived in time, if they had an ambulance available.
1 Q. Were there many shops or sales outlets on the various streets
2 intersecting there?
3 A. Not many. There was a butcher shop, a grocery, and so on. A few,
4 a few.
5 Q. Were those shops closed or open at the time of the incident?
6 A. At that time of day, the shops are not open because the shops were
7 working in those days until 3.00 p.m., so I assume they were not open.
8 Q. How did you get information about the subsequent events, the
9 arrival of the ambulance? Do you know exactly to which hospital Mr.
10 Vasiljevic was taken?
11 A. I wasn't informed straight away. I learned later that he was
12 taken to the Uzice hospital, to be quite frank. I didn't learn that day,
13 maybe not even for another seven days. I did learn it later. I don't
14 remember when. It was a long time ago. I can't tell you the day. I told
15 you about the Trinity.
16 Q. Did you meet him, did you meet Mr. Vasiljevic again? When did you
17 meet Mr. Vasiljevic again?
18 A. When do you mean?
19 Q. After the accident. Did you meet Mr. Vasiljevic at any point in
21 A. I told you that I saw him when I was walking along the Drina River
22 bank past his house, on crutches, in front of his house. I saw him once
23 because I take another route, I sometimes go uphill and so on.
24 Q. You saw him only once or did you see him again in other
25 circumstances in the same condition?
1 A. I said I saw him as I was walking for reasons of health. I saw
2 him in front of his house, on crutches, after he left the hospital. True,
3 I saw him once, but I did see him on crutches.
4 Q. Mr. Simsic, you showed us a moment ago, when the video clip was
5 being shown, your balcony, but we didn't get sufficient clarification from
6 you regarding the exact spot of the fall in relation to the spot where you
8 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] So, Mr. President, we have a document
9 here, photograph 156, and we should like to show it to the witness for him
10 to specify exactly where his balcony is and the spot of the accident.
11 Q. Mr. Simsic, please, you have a photograph there of the places that
12 you mentioned. Could you show us, taking the pointer given to you by the
13 usher -- could we have more light, please?
14 Going from the right to the left on the photograph -- that's
15 better now. Could you show us, please, on this photograph, the balcony
16 that you were standing on. Do you recognise this, these places?
17 A. I do indeed, extremely well. Here is my balcony, this one.
18 Q. Could you put a cross on the balcony with the marker, please.
19 A. [Marks].
20 Q. That's fine.
21 In what direction was the horse going before it fell?
22 A. I told you, they were going down the road. There's a mild slope,
23 as you can see, towards the hotel. This is my balcony, which I have
24 marked as the Prosecutor requested. Here is the grill that I was
1 Q. On the ELMO, please.
2 A. Yes, yes. This is the grill. This house is known as the corner
3 building, and further forward is the hotel. This is the hotel. This is
4 the grill, and this is the department store.
5 Facing down the street, the grill and the department store are on
6 the left-hand side of the street, and the hotel and my building and these
7 other buildings which I know very well - this is the old hotel, for
8 instance - they are on the right-hand side of the street before you reach
9 the bridge on the Drina, as I told you.
10 Q. Could you tell us where the Visegrad Hotel is on this photograph?
11 A. Yes, I can. Here it is, this is the Visegrad Hotel, and this is
12 the old hotel in front of it.
13 Q. Could you please tell us approximately where the fall occurred in
14 relation to all these buildings that you have pointed to, as you were
15 watching from your balcony.
16 A. Well, you see, I cannot show it to you because it is obscured by
17 this building that I call the grill. The incident happened here, in front
18 of this corner building, according to my judgement, 10 or 15 metres
19 towards the hotel, so it would be about the end of this building where the
20 grill is. If I were to point the pointer, it would be here.
21 JUDGE HUNT: May I suggest, Mr. Ossogo, that after the lunch
22 break, you have a more open photograph that he would be able to mark where
23 he saw the fall occur.
24 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, quite, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE HUNT: We will adjourn now until 2.30.
1 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.30 p.m.
2 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Ossogo.
3 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
4 Q. Mr. Simsic, before the break, on this Prosecution Exhibit 156, you
5 identified the balcony from which you saw the incident when Mr. Mitar
6 Vasiljevic fell off the horse but you told us that you could not identify
7 it accurately because of the buildings.
8 I will show you now Exhibit 152, but before that, I should like to
9 ask you: Can you indicate here the balcony from which you saw it? Could
10 you identify that building here before you are shown the next exhibit?
11 Could you identify that building and the balcony, please.
12 JUDGE HUNT: He has already placed a cross on the document
13 numbered 156 to demonstrate where his balcony is.
14 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President. I'm asking him
15 to identify the building opposite that building, that multi-storey
17 JUDGE HUNT: Well, he's given that description as well. Can't we
18 get on to the next picture?
19 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] But it seems that the witness is not
20 able to find his way around this photograph, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE HUNT: And that is the reason why we suggested you give him
22 another one where he will be able to see where he saw the accused fall off
23 the horse.
24 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Mr. President, this document is
25 document 156, the Prosecution Exhibit, and the next document that we shall
1 show the witness --
2 JUDGE HUNT: Just one moment. Document 156 is not yet an exhibit.
3 Do you want to make it an exhibit, the one where he's marked the balcony
4 that he was watching from?
5 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Indeed, yes, we wish to tender that
7 JUDGE HUNT: Do you have any objection to that, Mr. Domazet?
8 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you. It will be P156. Yes.
10 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Mr. Simsic, you have before you a photograph, an enlarged one, a
12 block of that site on which happened the event that you described to us.
13 Do you recognise this place?
14 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, Mr. Domazet.
15 MR. DOMAZET: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I am right, this is
16 Exhibit 152 which the witness has before him. This is the exhibit to
17 which we objected last time, saying that it could not offer the proper
18 picture of the square because of the angle under which it was taken, and
19 last time --
20 JUDGE HUNT: Just a moment, please. Mr. Domazet, I'm sure you are
21 not intending to do this, but I think the Prosecution are allowed to ask
22 the witness whether he can see it on this document, and I don't want the
23 witness to receive any sort of a message about what you think of this
24 document at this stage. Myself, I would suggest that Exhibit 155 might be
25 better, but nevertheless the Prosecution is entitled to ask whether he can
1 see on this photograph where the accused was when he fell. If the witness
2 says no, well, then, we'll move on to a document where he can.
3 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Mr. Simsic, do you want me to repeat the question? You have
5 before you a photograph of the site of the incident. There is a triangle
6 here, there are some cars and buildings, and right in front of you, you
7 have a building in the hexagonal form of a building. Can you point to us
8 the place where the fall of the horse took place, where Mr. Mitar fell off
9 the horse?
10 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Ossogo, I am very concerned about that question.
11 You said this is the site of where it occurred. This is the area, the
12 general area where it occurred, but to suggest that this photograph shows
13 the site might be misleading. I don't want there to be any suggestion
14 that this witness has been misled by your question.
15 This is the general area, the triangular area where everybody
16 apparently says that the accused fell off his horse but I think the
17 question is to be: Are you able to see on this photograph the precise
18 spot where this witness saw the accused fall off the horse?
19 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Mr. Simsic, on this photograph, to resume the question, or rather,
21 following the remarks by the President, I shall rephrase my question. Did
22 you see the fall, as you have described to us, of Mr. Mitar anywhere here?
23 A. This is a strange photograph. I don't know from which angle it
24 was taken. I recognise this park and the old secondary school and the
25 department store and all that I said and this grill restaurant here and
1 the hotel over here, the old one and the new one, but I can't see my
2 building where Mr. Mitar fell off the horse.
3 The previous photographs were all right, but this one, I can't
4 figure out from which angle it was taken. I recognise these buildings,
5 but I cannot really say. I can only make a guess and say that he probably
6 fell in front of the grill, facing in this direction here. I'd guess,
7 yes, that it was somewhere here but I don't see my building here because
8 it is not in this photograph, and it ought to be somewhere behind this
9 house here. This is an old house from the neighbouring street.
10 I am telling the truth because I took the oath, so the place where
11 this incident should have happened ought to be somewhere here, but you
12 should show me the right photograph, and then you will see that I was
13 telling the truth.
14 JUDGE HUNT: May I suggest you show him Exhibit P155, a clean copy
15 of it.
16 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, of course, Mr. President.
17 Q. Before you, you have a different photograph. Can you find your
18 way around it?
19 A. Shall I point at it?
20 Q. Yes.
21 A. Thank you very much.
22 Q. This cross which you drew here, is that the spot where the horse
24 A. Well, more or less, give or take five or six metres, plus/minus,
25 but it's thereabouts, yes.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Q. You said that your son Bojan had seen Mr. Vasiljevic before he
2 came to call you out. Do you think that it is possible, in view of where
3 he was before the horse fell, before the horse arrived at that place?
4 A. [Marks].
5 Q. Now, you marked this other place. Will you please put a "-1"
6 next to this and -- next to the first cross, and next to the second, a
8 JUDGE HUNT: I'm afraid it's not clear to me what this second one
9 is. Is this another suggestion as to where the horse fell? I think you
10 better clear it up, Mr. Ossogo, you can't leave it as it appears on the
12 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
13 The witness stated that his son had seen Mr. Mitar riding a horse
14 and invited his father then to see that wonder, so I was asking then where
15 was the horse at the time when the son saw him and when he called the
16 witness out. So he shows us the approximate place where Mr. Vasiljevic's
17 son saw the horse, or rather, Mr. Vasiljevic on horseback from the moment
18 after which then the witness saw him.
19 JUDGE HUNT: That is certainly not the way it reads on the
20 transcript. So would you mind asking him to make it clear that that is
21 where the horse was when his son called him out rather than the horse fell
22 at that second spot, because your question, as it is recorded in English,
23 "Do you think that it is possible, in view of where he was before the
24 horse fell, before the horse arrived at that place?" Which, with all due
25 respect, it doesn't help me.
1 So would you please just clear up with the witness what it is he
2 says happened at the second "X" that he has put on this document.
3 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Mr. Simsic, at that place where you put the second cross and where
5 you put 1, "-1," is it at that place that your son saw the accused Mitar
6 on horseback?
7 A. To begin with, I didn't put either 1 or 2 because I don't know
8 where to put 1 or 2 nearer the balcony or further on towards the terrace.
9 And when you tell me that, I'll answer your question.
10 Q. The first time that your son spotted the horse, there you should
11 put 1. I just ask you to put 1.
12 A. May I -- will you allow me to write it next to "X-1" and 2, if I
13 may. May I? Yes, well, I've written down.
14 Q. Now, at this place which is marked "X-1," this is the place where
15 your son saw the accused on horseback before he went to call you out; is
16 that so?
17 A. It is.
18 Q. And the place marked "X-2," this is the place where the horse fell
19 on Mr. Mitar; is that it?
20 A. Well, I said next to the first "X," I said it will be give or take
21 one or two metres and that that distance around "X-1" plus/minus
22 forward/backward five or six metres and then it fell. It was a long time
23 ago, but I think that that is how it was.
24 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] I do not know, Mr. President, if that
25 makes it clear now.
1 JUDGE HUNT: I would like to know myself how he knew where the
2 accused was at the time his son first saw him. It must surely be only a
3 guess at the best. Now, I don't know what the importance of this is to
4 the case and I won't suggest that you ask him, but I am puzzled as to how
5 he could possibly tell us where the accused was when his son first saw him
6 when he wasn't there himself.
7 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President.
8 This morning, the witness was asked some questions about the time
9 it took him to get to the balcony, that is, when his son came to --
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, that's not what I said.
11 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Ossogo, I don't want you to explain it. If you
12 think it's important, you get the witness to explain it. He's the
13 witness, not you. Now if you think it's important, you get him to explain
14 it. I just don't understand how he could possibly tell us that, unless
15 it's a guess.
16 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. Simsic, you heard what the President said. At the place where
18 you have "X-1," how is it that you know that it was at that place where
19 your son saw the accused riding on horseback?
20 A. It was like this: My son saw a few metres in front of the
21 balcony, give or take so many metres down the street from the -- so
22 opposite the balcony and then off the balcony, so that is the interval
23 within which my son saw it.
24 And when you say that it took me five minutes to go from kitchen
25 to the balcony, sorry, that's too much, because to get from the kitchen
1 through the room to the terrace, it was a couple of minutes. I
2 saw the incident and then I went back to my kitchen and it all took five
3 minutes because my flat is not like a stadium, so it didn't take me five
4 minutes to go from the kitchen through the room to the balcony as far as I
5 understood it.
6 This is my explanation, with an apology.
7 Q. We shall not need this photograph any more. Can you confirm us,
8 can you tell us, Mr. Simsic, the speed, the speed at which the horse was
9 moving, more or less, according to what you told us, according to what you
10 were able to see. And we should like to tender this document, 152/1, into
12 THE REGISTRAR: Would that be Exhibit 155?
13 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Yes, indeed, 155.
14 JUDGE HUNT: Any objection, Mr. Domazet?
15 MR. DOMAZET: No, no.
16 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you. P155/1.
17 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Do you want me to repeat the question, Mr. Simsic?
19 JUDGE HUNT: I think you'd better because I didn't even understand
20 it to be a question; it was asking for the document to go into evidence.
21 So if you think there was a question there, I suggest you ask it again.
22 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
23 Q. I was asking about whether you had any idea how fast the horse was
24 moving down that street on which you saw it.
25 A. To begin with, my name is Ratomir, if I understood you properly.
1 How fast the horse was moving per kilometre per hour, that is very strange
2 to me. It ain't a car, to say that to give you any kilometres. In my
3 statement to Mr. Radomir Tanaskovic, I said the horse was moving slowly
4 but that Mitar was trying to speed it up with that rope but it had not
5 obtained the acceleration of a run, of a trot. It was still moving
6 slowly. I don't really know how to put it.
7 Q. But you nevertheless had enough time to see when you came out, to
8 see that horse cover several metres; isn't it?
9 A. Yes. I saw the horse move from "X-1" to that approximate "X-2,"
10 that is, for about five or six metres down the street, or up the street.
11 Q. You think that the distance covered from the moment when you were
12 told about it and the moment when you saw a horse in the street, that that
13 distance could have been four or five metres?
14 A. You perhaps meant minutes, not metres, I'm sorry. I know the
15 answer to both except that I don't know what you have in mind.
16 JUDGE HUNT: What counsel is trying to do is to establish how fast
17 the horse was moving. Now, forget about the nature of the questions. Are
18 you able to describe to us how fast the horse was moving?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I already said it. When I saw
20 the horse, it was moving slowly. It was just walking. But then when
21 Mitar tried to either whip him with this rope or to spur the horse on,
22 then the horse started moving slightly faster. So it walked slightly
23 faster than before Mitar applied that rope. Not that fast that you could
24 call it a trot or a gallop, because had it been frightened by a car or by
25 a -- some vehicle, then perhaps it would not be moving that slow.
1 JUDGE HUNT: Just one moment, would you. Are you able to tell us
2 whether the horse reacted when the accused used the rope? Did it move up
3 suddenly or did it move to one side suddenly before it moved more quickly?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Oh, no. No, come on, the horse
5 wasn't frightened, it didn't rear up, it only started moving slightly
6 faster, just slightly faster but not so fast as to throw Mitar off, Mr.
8 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you, sir.
9 Now you proceed, Mr. Ossogo.
10 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Before we conclude, Mr. Simsic, I should like to go to what you
12 said about the information about what you learned after the accident. Who
13 was it that told you about what followed, that is, the call for an
14 ambulance, who took Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic to the hospital, and all the
15 other information, all the other details before you saw him next?
16 A. It was a long time ago and I don't know the name of the person who
17 told me that, but somebody did. And what else did you ask me?
18 Q. We are still with the first part. You have no idea who was the
19 person or persons who gave you that information?
20 A. I said I did not know, not definitely.
21 Q. Is it because it was some years ago or is it that your memory
22 simply does not serve you that well?
23 A. Oh, no, my memory's fine but somebody told me and I don't know who
24 because it was a long time ago. Somebody in the street, not somebody who
25 had come to my place. I could now make it up, but then that would not be
1 truthful testimony.
2 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I have no further
3 questions for this witness on the part of the Prosecution.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Any re-examination, Mr. Tanaskovic?
5 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, very briefly.
6 Re-examined by Mr. Tanaskovic:
7 Q. I should like to ask the witness: Mr. Simsic, in your judgement,
8 the "X-1" that you wrote down, I came to the conclusion that that was the
9 spot where, according to you, your son saw Mr. Vasiljevic on horseback.
10 In your opinion, does that "X" -- where would be that "X" in relation to
11 your balcony?
12 A. I said that my son saw Mitar on horseback in front of the balcony
13 before he entered the area of the accident. So I went out onto the
14 balcony when Mitar was in the position marked with "X-1."
15 Q. Mr. Simsic, I know it's difficult to find your way around on this
16 photograph, but it emerges now that "X-1" is not the spot where your son
17 saw Mr. Vasiljevic but rather the spot where you saw him when you came
18 onto the balcony.
19 A. Partly so. I'm repeating, my son saw Mitar on horseback in front
20 of the balcony, a few metres down the street. When I came out, I saw
21 Mitar close to "X-1." That's what I've said and I can't put it in any
22 other way.
23 Q. Please repeat, tell us, what does "X-1" stand for?
24 A. In my view, "X" is the area where Mitar fell. This is the
25 distance of tolerance, five or six metres, five or six metres up or down
1 the street. That is according to my free assessment.
2 Q. Mr. Simsic, let me rephrase the question. You were asked to mark
3 on the photograph the spot where you saw Mr. Vasiljevic when you came out
4 onto the balcony before he fell. Where would you mark that spot?
5 A. I would mark it more or less where I marked "X-1" because I saw
6 Mitar on horseback very briefly.
7 Q. Just one question more. After everything you have told Their
8 Honours today, are you quite sure that Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic fell off the
9 horse on the day of the Holy Trinity, that is, the 16th of June 1992, in
10 the afternoon and that you made this statement under oath in this
11 courtroom and that you know what it means to take an oath, especially in
12 this Tribunal?
13 A. I'm a bit surprised now by your question.
14 Q. I'm simply asking you -- I apologise.
15 JUDGE HUNT: May I suggest you ask him one question at a time.
16 There are three rolled up there. And in case there's any problem about
17 the date, may I suggest you ask him what the date was because it is
18 otherwise an attempt, perhaps, to cure what may be some confusion in his
19 evidence, but if it is so, then it's a leading question.
20 So why don't you ask him a series of questions: Did he see him?
21 When was it? And if you'd like, where was it? And you can then ask him
22 if he realises what it is to make those statements on oath. But
23 otherwise, you are taking away the value of it by rolling them all up and,
24 indeed, perhaps even leading as to the date.
25 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour, but in my
1 opinion, the witness has told us these dates today.
2 JUDGE HUNT: Well, then, is there any necessity to repeat them if
3 he's told us?
4 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] I withdraw the question then.
5 Thank you, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE HUNT: Sir, are you able to tell us how old your son Bojan
7 was at the time?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Let me see. He was 12, not quite
9 12, under 12 because he was born on the 16th of October 1980. That's
10 right, 1980. I'm being very careful not to make a mistake. Of course I
11 know the birthdays of my two sons and this incident happened when I said,
12 so he was just under 12.
13 JUDGE HUNT: And he's now 21.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Not quite. He will be. On the 16th
15 of October, he will be 21.
16 JUDGE HUNT: I hope you've given him his birthday because it's
17 already past that date.
18 Do you want to ask any questions arising out of that, Mr. Ossogo?
19 MR. OSSOGO: [Interpretation] No, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE HUNT: Any questions, Mr. Tanaskovic?
21 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you, sir, for coming along to give evidence.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise about the birthday. I
24 know there was a birthday cake, I even got a slice of it, but I hope
25 that's nothing dreadful my saying this. Please take that into account.
1 If you will, I would be grateful.
2 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, certainly. But we are very grateful to you for
3 the evidence you gave and you are now free to leave.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. It was a
5 great pleasure for me to be called here to tell you the truth and nothing
6 but the truth and I wish to say that you are very fair, correct, moderate,
7 and principled. I don't know what else I could say about you. I was
8 surprised to see how -- what fine ladies and gentlemen you are. Thank you
9 very much.
10 [The witness withdrew]
11 JUDGE HUNT: Well, after that testimonial, who is your next witness,
12 Mr. Domazet?
13 MR. DOMAZET: Your Honour, is Savic Zivorad.
14 [The witness entered court]
15 JUDGE HUNT: Sir, would you please make the solemn declaration in
16 the document which the court usher is showing you.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
18 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
19 WITNESS: ZIVORAD SAVIC
20 [Witness answered through interpreter]
21 JUDGE HUNT: Sit down, please, sir. Yes, Mr. Tanaskovic.
22 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Examined by Mr. Tanaskovic:
24 Q. Mr. Savic, good afternoon.
25 A. Good afternoon.
1 Q. Will you please introduce yourself, tell us your name.
2 A. My name is Zivorad Savic.
3 Q. When and where were you born?
4 A. I was born on the 25th of January in 1951, in Visegrad.
5 Q. Tell me, please, are you still living in Visegrad?
6 A. I am.
7 Q. Tell me, what is your occupation?
8 A. I am the driver of the ambulance in the health centre in Visegrad.
9 I am a professional driver.
10 Q. Does that mean that you are employed in the health centre in
12 A. Yes, it does.
13 Q. Since when have you been employed in the health centre?
14 A. Since the 24th of September, 1984.
15 Q. Could you briefly tell us, this health centre, what kind of a
16 medical institution is it as compared to polyclinics, hospitals, and so
18 A. It provides primary health care which doesn't have inpatients;
19 they are driven from there to Foca or Uzice. This is just for primary
20 health care, and I work in the emergency department of that health centre.
21 Q. Does that mean that in these health centres, no significant
22 medical treatment can be provided?
23 A. No. Any more serious injury has to be treated elsewhere.
24 Q. What do you mean "elsewhere"?
25 A. To larger medical centres. Before the war, it was Uzice,
1 Sarajevo, Foca, Belgrade, and so on.
2 Q. This function of the health centre, has it remained unchanged
3 before the war and during the war?
4 A. Yes, before the war, during the war, and even today.
5 Q. During the war, were you deployed by the responsible authorities;
6 did you have a military assignment or a work assignment?
7 A. My work assignment was attached to the medical centre as a medical
9 Q. Could you explain, what do you mean this medical department?
10 A. That was my military assignment. It was attached to the medical
11 centre, and my obligation was to be there on duty. Should anything
12 happen, I was to drive people somewhere if they could not be treated on
13 the spot.
14 Q. How did you work in the medical centre or the medical department?
15 Did you work in shifts or what kind of schedule did you have?
16 A. There were shifts, but when the war actually started, I wasn't
17 allowed to move away from the health centre at all. Even now, I work in
18 shifts, 12-hour shifts, then I have -- am off 24 hours, then I have a
19 night duty, then again I am off, and so on. Even nowadays, we work in
20 such shifts.
21 Q. You said you were not allowed to move away, what does that mean?
22 A. We -- no one could go home when they wanted. You could go home to
23 have a bath, to change, to shave when you were allowed to go.
24 Q. Could you do that every day or after several days?
25 A. Only after several days. There, we had a place to sleep in and to
1 eat in there.
2 Q. Throughout the time of the war, were you in Visegrad, or rather,
3 in the medical centre?
4 A. Mostly, yes, I was in Visegrad at the medical centre and, of
5 course, taking patients, driving patients somewhere. Sometimes they would
6 call me up and tell me to go and pick up a wounded man and bring him back
7 to the medical centre.
8 Q. Was your family in Visegrad as well?
9 A. No. About the 4th of April, I sent them to Uzice. I have two
10 sisters living there. I sent them there for security reasons.
11 Q. Why for security reasons?
12 A. But I didn't want the children to go through all this because the
13 situation was rather bad in Visegrad; the children were afraid - my wife,
14 my children - so I thought it would be better for them.
15 Q. Could you be more specific what the situation was actually like?
16 A. Well, let me tell you, there were extremists behaving strangely in
17 Visegrad, beating people up. For a month, people didn't dare go downtown
18 because of Murat Sabanovic who would beat people. He beat up one man, he
19 threw another man off a bridge, so people had to seek shelter. People
20 were shooting around town whenever they felt like it and everyone was
21 afraid for one's children. My children were 7 or 8 or 10 and for their
22 own safety, I sent them away. They went to Uzice; I had a sister there
23 and that is where my children were.
24 Q. Mr. Savic, could you briefly list a few situations from that time
25 period which, in your opinion, contributed to this situation of fear when
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 you had to do what you did?
2 A. There was a man called Murat Sabanovic. I was driving around town
3 often and I saw his supporters with him, who was yelling out, "What more
4 should I do to the Serbs for them to react?" One of his men went a couple
5 of kilometres from Visegrad. A Serb was celebrating, a Muslim went to his
6 house, they were drinking, and while they were drinking, they were singing
7 together and drinking, but he killed him and fled. Whether he was after
8 arrested I don't know, so it was not safe for anyone.
9 There was an atmosphere of panic among the people.
10 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Tanaskovic, what is the relevance of this
11 evidence? This is a matter which has been debated on several occasions
12 and I understood Mr. Domazet to say that he was not going to go into
13 details about it but he wanted to suggest that there was some atmosphere
14 of fear. How is it relevant to anything that we have to determine in this
16 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] It is relevant, Your Honour,
17 because one can see from these descriptions of the situation that, in that
18 period, even Serbs were leaving Visegrad. Whether they were women or
19 children, they were leaving.
20 JUDGE HUNT: What is the relevance of that fact?
21 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] So far in the record, we have
22 been told that the Muslims left, or rather, that they were chased out from
23 these areas.
24 JUDGE HUNT: I don't think that's a fair representation. The
25 evidence, as I understand it, was they left because they were in fear of
1 being attacked, but how does it deny that the Muslim civilian population
2 was being attacked to prove that the Serb civilian population was also
3 being attacked?
4 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] The Serb population was exposed
5 to attack and the witness Savic has told us what the extremists were doing
6 and that is the fear that was provoked among the people.
7 JUDGE HUNT: I'd like an answer to my question, Mr. Tanaskovic.
8 How does proof that the Serb civilian population was being attacked deny
9 the Prosecution case that the Muslims civilian population was also being
11 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] At the same time that the Muslims
12 were leaving, the Serbs were leaving as well. That is what I'm trying to
13 prove, that both ethnicities were leaving.
14 JUDGE HUNT: You said that several times and I've asked you the
15 question several times and you have never answered it. The question is:
16 What is its relevance? We are not here to write a history of what
17 happened throughout the whole of Bosnia. We have plenty of cases where
18 the Serbs have been the victims, and what happened in those cases will be
19 written in the judgements of those cases, but we are not dealing with that
21 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] I understand, Your Honour. I
22 shall move on, with your permission.
23 Q. Mr. Savic, tell us, please, do you know Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic?
24 A. I do.
25 Q. Tell us, please, since when and how?
1 A. I think Mitar is a couple of years younger than me. I was born in
2 Visegrad. I know where he was born, and I think in secondary school, we
3 met already and then when I came back from the army in 1971, he worked as
4 a waiter. I used to like company and going out to cafes and he served me
5 very often and we would sit together.
6 My wife works in the same company as he does, so I would come to
7 fetch my wife in the evenings and he was working there and I would take my
8 wife home. That's how we met.
9 Q. Tell me, please, the name of the enterprise.
10 A. Panos Visegrad, a catering enterprise called Panos.
11 Q. Are you familiar with the facilities in which Mr. Vasiljevic
13 A. He virtually worked in all of them. There was the Cadjava, then
14 there was Panos in town, then the Visegrad Hotel, we called it the new
15 hotel. He worked at Bikovac. I don't think there is a single
16 establishment that Mr. Vasiljevic did not work in.
17 Q. You said you would see him in these catering establishments and
18 that you sat at table with him on several occasions. Could you tell us,
19 please, during that time period when you were in the same company, would
20 you see Mr. Vasiljevic consuming larger quantities of alcohol, or getting
21 drunk, in other words?
22 A. Yes, he would get drunk at times, and he did like to have a drink.
23 When he finished working, he would sit down with his friends, there were
24 Muslims there too, they would all sit around together. They would
25 socialise, and he liked to have a drink. He would drink.
1 Q. So that in such a state or did you ever hear of him having done
2 something, committed an offence in that state, provoked a scandal or
4 A. No, I never heard of any scandal that he provoked or of doing harm
5 to anyone or damaging anyone.
6 Q. Would you see him during the war, especially in the course of
8 A. Yes, I would. I would see him in town.
9 Q. And on those occasions that you saw him, where was that and what,
10 if anything, was he doing?
11 A. In 1992, I think he was something responsible for the cleaning of
12 the town, I think. Who assigned him to that, I don't know, but I used to
13 see him around. As I went around my work, I could see how he went about,
14 how he was putting the town in order. He had this red band, and there
15 were all kinds of things, there were posters of all the parties. The town
16 was dirty, and all those women who worked in those various places, they
17 had to clean it.
18 Q. And what was your impression after that cleaning drive; what did
19 the town look like?
20 A. Well, it was cleaner than now, because they don't have a single
21 utility vehicle or anything. Right now, just before I left, the town was
22 dirtier than at that time because he really did do a good job of removing
23 all the broken glass, and people came out of their buildings with brooms
24 and swept the streets.
25 Q. On those occasions when you saw Mr. Vasiljevic, do you remember if
1 on any one of those occasions if he wore a uniform and a weapon on him?
2 A. I never saw him in a uniform, nor did I ever see him with any
4 Q. Can you tell us until when did you used to see Mr. Vasiljevic
5 doing that work?
6 A. Until the 14th of June, because after that, he went to the
8 Q. What 14th June?
9 A. 1992.
10 Q. And what is it that happened that day?
11 A. I was at the health centre. Somebody called by telephone, I don't
12 know who, but one of the nurses said, "There's an injured person on the
13 square." We called the square that area in front of the hotel. "There is
14 an injured up there," and I went up there and Mitar Vasiljevic was lying
15 practically in the middle of the street, so that I came there. There were
16 a couple of people there. Now, who that was, I can't really tell. And he
17 was crying with pain and said, "Look, Zika, what happened to me," so we
18 picked him up and I took him to the health centre.
19 Q. Can you remember who it was that made that call to the health
21 A. I don't know. Well, Visegrad Hotel and that was nearby and that
22 was the building with the telephone which worked. A nurse called me and
23 said that was -- I wasn't the person who answered that call, I was
24 somewhere in the compound, near the car. I was somewhere there.
25 Q. And after that call, how long did it take you to get to the site,
1 that is, to the place where Mr. Vasiljevic was lying?
2 A. Well, five minutes, I guess.
3 Q. And when you arrived there, did you see some persons present, near
4 Mr. Vasiljevic?
5 A. Yes, there were some people there, two or three. I wouldn't know
6 who they were but they were there and they helped me to carry him into the
8 Q. And when you were there, at that time or later, did you find out
9 what had happened?
10 A. Well, as soon as I arrived, I found that out because I was told
11 that Mitar had fallen off the horse and people joked a little bit and
12 pulled Mitar's leg but he was moaning with pain so that we put him on a
13 stretcher. And he said, "Zika, Zika, be careful, be careful because my
14 leg's broken," and then we put him on the stretcher slowly and took him
15 into the car and to the health centre.
16 Q. Can you recall which leg was injured?
17 A. I think it was his left leg.
18 Q. So that was from those people who were present there or from Mitar
19 himself what had happened, is it?
20 A. Yes, from them when I arrived there.
21 Q. And do you perhaps know if anyone moved Mr. Vasiljevic from the
22 place where you found him?
23 A. I do not know, but I know where he was when I arrived. Whether
24 somebody had moved him, I do not know. I must say I never gave it a
25 thought. All I know is where I found him and he was lying in the street.
1 Q. Could you now just tell us what was he wearing and especially what
2 kind of footwear did he have?
3 A. I'll do my best, but I'm not quite sure as for the clothes. I
4 think it was sort of dark colour and I think he had short army boots.
5 Q. Do you remember if Mr. Vasiljevic had anything else on him?
6 A. No, I didn't find anything next to him, nor did I notice anything.
7 Q. Do you know if he had on him or next to him an overcoat, a hat?
8 A. No, no, no, he was bareheaded except that, over his sleeve, he had
9 something red which was the emblem of somebody on duty or a responsible
10 person on duty like the ones that you see on football matches, people who
11 look after the order there.
12 Q. Can you tell us if it was the same band or similar to the one that
13 you mentioned earlier that he used to wear before?
14 A. Yes, same armband.
15 Q. And that place which you call the square where you found Mr.
16 Vasiljevic, how far is it from the health centre or the other way around?
17 A. About 1.000 metres.
18 Q. To make it clearer, in relation to the Drina River, where is the
19 health centre and where is the place where you found him?
20 A. The health centre is on the left bank of the Drina and the hotel
21 and the square is on the right bank of the Drina.
22 Q. And when you brought Mr. Vasiljevic in the ambulance car, what
23 happened then?
24 A. Well, that is how it always was, the standard procedure. I
25 brought him to the health centre and then I called out or perhaps the Dr.
1 Loncarevic came out straight away and he had a look and Mitar also told
2 him, "Doctor, this and this happened," and then there are other people. I
3 did not carry him in, but people from the health centre carried him in and
4 I believe they took him straight to the x-ray because that was the -- our
5 standard procedure, to make an x-ray of his leg. He was lying on a
7 Q. And the room where the x-rays are done, is it somewhere else or
8 where is it?
9 A. Well, it is upstairs. It's about 60 or 70 metres from the
10 entrance that you have to carry the patients up the stairs and down a
11 passage, so it's pretty far. There aren't any trolleys, any aids, one has
12 to carry those people.
13 Q. Do you remember any of the persons who carried those stretcher, or
14 rather, Vasiljevic on the stretcher?
15 A. I'm not really sure. There were people there, somebody perhaps
16 lent a hand, I don't know. I wasn't one of those because I had some --
17 something else to do. One never knows who might call so I had to be where
18 I was and I wasn't one of those who carried him.
19 Q. A moment ago you said that you came to the square, that is, from
20 the health centre into town to the square, as you call it. Can you tell
21 us roughly the location? "The square" is a rather broad term, so can you
22 define more precisely where did you find Mr. Mitar Vasiljevic?
23 A. There is a Sipad store and across the street is the restaurant and
24 there is a parking lot and a curb, so it was near that curb on the
25 right-hand side of the road. As you go up the street, you have the curb
1 here and he was there and his head was towards the town.
2 Q. When you said the right-hand side --
3 A. The right-hand side of the street.
4 Q. But facing where?
5 A. When I come from the town.
6 Q. You mean towards the hotel?
7 A. Yes, facing the hotel.
8 Q. Do you recall what time of the day it was or, even better, could
9 you remember the time when you arrived there with the ambulance car?
10 A. I think it was around 1700, yes, thereabouts, 1700. It was in the
11 afternoon. It was rainy, gloomy. Well, had I known what would happen, I
12 would have noted it down, but it -- yes, it was sometime around 1700.
13 Q. And how long were you there?
14 A. Well, five, ten minutes, not more.
15 Q. Do you know if that broken leg was x-rayed in Visegrad?
16 A. Well, since they took him upstairs, I presume that, yes, that it
17 was done.
18 Q. And do you know what that x-ray showed?
19 A. Well, I wouldn't have taken him on had it not been for that
20 fracture of the leg, that is the only way I can take anyone. I receive a
21 travel order to take him, and the referral, and it says where the patient
22 needs to go and then I get those documents and, on the basis of that, I
23 then take the patient to wherever I'm told to take him.
24 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Tanaskovic, he has said twice that the general
25 procedure was to get an x-ray. He assumed that's where the accused was
1 taken. How can he tell us what was in the x-ray? That's, if I may say
2 so, an outrageous attempt to get in a pure guesswork. I would be more
3 interested to know where the documents are that told him where to go and
4 what time it was the call was received and everything myself. Are you
5 going to ask him about that?
6 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I wanted to see if
7 the witness knew, or rather, if he saw that x-ray. That is why I asked
8 him that and I don't want to ask him anything more about it.
9 Q. Mr. Savic, you were there, you were present in the health centre,
10 that is what you told us at the beginning. And after this procedure was
11 finished, did somebody take Mr. Vasiljevic to Uzice?
12 A. I took him there. I took him there in the ambulance car.
13 Q. Did you have any papers, any documentation for that travel?
14 A. Yes, he had the doctor's referral, the diagnosis, and with that,
15 he was going to Uzice and it would also show, it would also indicate which
16 ward he was to go to.
17 Q. Before you left for Uzice, was medical aid extended to him and
18 what kind of?
19 A. I wouldn't know that. There are doctors, there are nurses, I
20 really don't know anything about it. They merely tell me that the patient
21 is ready, I put them in the car. Now, whether anything was administered
22 to him, I mean doctors know these things. I never go into that. I am
23 merely given the referral or they give it to the patient so he can look
24 after it because I have to drive the car and mind the car, so the patient
25 keeps the referral papers.
1 Q. Do you recall if you or Mr. Vasiljevic carried that documentation,
2 I mean the x-rays of his leg?
3 A. Well, that is the usual procedure. Every patient is given that,
4 that both the x-rays and the referral, and then the patient takes those
5 along so that he does not have to go through another x-ray. Even now, I
6 mean, when I have to do the same thing, then I give it usually to the
7 patient. Or if somebody is escorting that patient, a relative or
8 somebody, I give it to them for fear that I might lose those papers and
9 that is how it's always been.
10 Q. You said that it was practice or predominantly. Now, my question
11 is did you or did you not; do you know or do you not know?
12 A. I had the referral and that travel order on the basis of which a
13 car can go somewhere, and the referral is given to the patient to take it
14 with him.
15 Q. And secondly, do you know or do you remember or have you forgotten
16 if Mr. Vasiljevic had those x-rays in the car with him?
17 A. Well, I couldn't tell you now because it is mostly nurses and
18 those personnel there get all this ready and put it in the ambulance car.
19 Q. And when did you leave the health centre to go to Uzice, at about
20 what time?
21 A. I think it must have been close to 1900.
22 Q. Were you and Mr. Vasiljevic alone in that vehicle or was somebody
23 else with you?
24 A. Miloje Novakovic is a man who also works in the health centre and
25 he asked if he could also come along if there was any case to be taken to
1 Uzice because he was to undergo a medical check-up there at a doctor, so
2 he asked if he could come along, and for safety, too, for safety reasons
3 as well.
4 Q. So because of safety?
5 A. Well, you know, sometimes we would be told, you know, the road is
6 not safe. Sometimes there is some gunfire and all the passengers get off
7 and try to hide and they don't feel safe and so you have to wait until
8 it's safe again to go.
9 Q. And on your way from Visegrad to Uzice, did you stop anywhere?
10 A. Yes, I stopped in Vardiste at the uncle's because Mitar told me,
11 "Drop by my uncle." His uncle is his mother's brother. So we stopped
12 there - that man is a publican - he asked for a blanket. I presume he was
13 cold and then the -- and she then brought him a fruit juice or something
14 and we were there for a short while.
15 Q. How long, could you tell us?
16 A. Well, I think it could not have been less than 20 minutes.
17 Q. On that road, were there any checkpoints or -- and which?
18 A. Yes, there were two of them but then I showed them their
19 referrals, they see what it's about, and there were two such crossings and
20 that is where we were delayed also.
21 Q. And when did you arrive in Uzice?
22 A. I arrived there, it could have been about 40 minutes past 8.00.
23 At 20 to 9.00, that's when I arrived.
24 Q. And what did you do then with Mr. Vasiljevic?
25 A. Well, the procedure is when I bring a patient to Uzice, then there
1 is a doctor on duty in the reception surgery, and there are also nurses
2 and they then take the patient over and took him to another x-ray. And I
3 have to wait there until I'm told the patient is admitted. And they have
4 their special service who do that and they called Aleksandar Moljevic, the
5 doctor responsible for the orthopaedic ward, and he looked at the x-rays
6 and he said take him to me, I believe it's on the fourth floor, the
7 patient was taken there then.
8 Q. Do you have to sign anything that you are handing over the
9 patient, or rather, that you left the patient in the hospital?
10 A. No, no, no, at that time nobody had to sign it. No, no, I did not
11 have to sign anything because there was only the referral on the basis of
12 which he was admitted and that referral stays with the hospital and that
13 is how they draw up the invoice and then charge for the treatment because
14 Uzice is in Serbia and Visegrad is in Bosnia and that referral was used to
15 then charge the insurance service.
16 Q. Mr. Savic, you told us that he was admitted to the hospital by the
17 ward doctor, Dr. Moljevic. In large hospitals, as far as I know, I don't
18 know if you will agree with me, there is the doctor, the doctor on duty
19 for the hospital as a whole. Was there any such doctor or not?
20 A. Well, in the reception department, you have a doctor on duty, but
21 otherwise, every individual ward has its own doctors on duty, depending.
22 I mean, surgeries, surgical wards, the orthopaedic wards will have the
23 doctor on duty and that is where the patient is then referred to and
25 Q. Do you remember the name of that doctor?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 JUDGE HUNT: The translation has just stopped. You've just -- you
2 must give them more time.
3 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] My apologies.
4 Q. Do you remember that doctor who was on duty in the general
5 reception room; do you know who that is? Do you remember his name?
6 A. I don't. I would recognise him if I saw him. And recently
7 somebody told me that he was retired. I asked the other day somebody and
8 I asked about -- somebody else asked about that particular doctor and he
9 said he's been pensioned off.
10 Q. From all that you have told us, it transpires that in the Uzice
11 hospital, they again made another x-ray of Vasiljevic's leg?
12 A. 100 per cent.
13 Q. During your testimony, you said that Mr. Novakovic came along with
14 you, was in the car with you. Was he all the time with you or what
15 happened to him?
16 A. He also returned with me. He went to the hospital. Where in the
17 hospital precisely, I don't know. He had to have a check-up. Something
18 was wrong with his sight or I don't know.
19 Q. In view of all that, in your view, how long did you stay at the
21 A. About 45 minutes. It is when they tell me that the patient has
22 been admitted that I can go back, so I may have spent in Uzice another
23 half hour or so to buy something, to do some chore or the other and then I
24 went back. I think I returned about 2300.
25 Q. Now, tell us, did you often go to the Uzice hospital because you
1 were a driver?
2 A. I did, because there was no other hospital to take patients to
3 except Uzice.
4 Q. And after that, when you left Vasiljevic behind in the hospital,
5 after that, did you go there?
6 A. Of course I did.
7 Q. Tell us, did you ever visit Mr. Vasiljevic, go to see Mr.
9 A. Yes, I did. My sister worked in Uzice, she was a cook and she
10 distributed food among the wards and she reported to me about patients and
11 I also went to see them. Whenever I had time, I'd go and see people who
12 came from Visegrad, who were from Visegrad like I was.
13 JUDGE HUNT: That's a convenient time, Mr. Tanaskovic.
14 MR. TANASKOVIC: [Interpretation] I hope it is, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE HUNT: We'll adjourn now and resume at 9.30 in the morning.
16 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
17 at 4.00 p.m., to be reconvened on Wednesday
18 the 21st day of November, 2001, at
19 9.30 a.m.