1 Tuesday, 24 August 2010
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.15 a.m.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning to
6 everybody in and around the courtroom. This is case IT-08-91-T, the
7 Prosecutor versus Mico Stanisic and Stojan Zupljanin.
8 JUDGE HALL
9 Good morning to everyone. May we have the appearances for today,
11 MR. HANNIS: Good morning, Your Honours. On behalf of the
12 Prosecution, I'm Tom Hannis along with Joanna Korner, Belinda Pidwell and
13 Crispian Smith.
14 MR. ZECEVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Slobodan Zecevic,
15 Slobodan Cvijetic, Eugene O'Sullivan, and Ms. Tatjana Savic, appearing
16 for Stanisic Defence this morning. Thank you.
17 MR. KRGOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Dragan Krgovic and
18 Igor Pantelic for Zupljanin Defence.
19 JUDGE HALL
20 Our 15-minute delay in taking the Bench this morning, was that we
21 were canvassing a number of housekeeping matters which we should probably
22 raise before the witness is called for re-examination.
23 The first is that the -- there are two urgent motions which we
24 have from the Prosecution, and we -- we would wish to know whether the
25 Defence is in a position to indicate now, if not now, later today,
1 whether they intend to respond. Because if they do so intend to respond,
2 we would request a response by the end of this week and as much as both
3 motions concern witnesses who are due to testify next week.
4 The other matter is that I assume that counsel have considered
5 what we raised overnight -- well, have considered overnight what we
6 raised yesterday about whether time -- well, not time because we have the
7 time that's why we raised it, whether they're prepared to deal with this
8 motion that was scheduled for Friday dealing with exhumations.
9 MR. ZECEVIC: Your Honours, it is my understanding that we are
10 filing two motions today as -- as instructed by the -- by the
11 Trial Chamber, which refers to the motions -- the responses, I'm sorry,
12 the responses to the -- to the OTP motion as instructed by the
13 Trial Chamber last week. We're filing them today.
14 If Your Honours are referring to the motions we received
15 yesterday, we do intend to respond to that and we would do that in the --
16 in the time which -- which the Trial Chamber allocates for -- for our
18 JUDGE HALL
19 MR. ZECEVIC: And concerning the -- the arguments, I am afraid,
20 Your Honours, the Defence is not ready to argue it today, because the
21 research is not -- is not completed until this moment, because we
22 anticipated it is going to be Friday, and I'm afraid there has been some
23 other matters - the coming witnesses - that we were -- we were pressed to
24 deal with.
25 So I'm afraid I couldn't [Overlapping speakers] ...
1 JUDGE HALL
2 Mr. Zecevic. Thank you.
3 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you very much, Your Honour.
4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, may I just -- I'm going to deal with a
5 number of matters -- I'm sorry, I'm hidden at the moment. I am going to
6 deal with a number of matters once the witness is finished.
7 But an urgent decision is needed, please, on our motion of the
8 3rd of August, to which the Defence have already responded, I believe, to
9 add the video relating to the killings at Mount Vlasic
10 JUDGE HALL
11 out soonest.
12 MS. KORNER: Well, Your Honour, I hope it is more than soonest
13 because as I'm explaining, if we have to move witnesses up, which we may
14 have to in the light of what has been happening, then the witness who is
15 scheduled to start next Monday, we may be starting on Friday.
16 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Ms. Korner, is that Witness 023?
18 MS. KORNER: Yes [Microphone not activated].
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: And he is scheduled for Monday.
20 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, at the moment, he is scheduled for
21 Monday. We have a witness scheduled for Friday, plus exhumations
22 argument, who you issued a witness summons for, and we understand from
23 VWS that there may be problems because of visas in getting him here.
24 So -- and apparently the witness summons has not been served,
25 we're told.
1 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE HALL
4 MS. KORNER: Thank you, Your Honours.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Ms. Korner, what are you basically -- Ms. Korner.
7 MS. KORNER: I'm so sorry, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: What you are basically telling us is that we
9 won't have a witness for Friday.
10 MS. KORNER: At the -- the scheduled witness, no. The witness
11 who is due to start on Monday, should be arriving today.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Then you move him to the Friday.
13 MS. KORNER: [Overlapping speakers] ... if we have to we will
14 move him up. We're still hoping we will get the scheduled witness for
15 Friday. But, as I say, as my understanding is, he will be here today
16 and, therefore, all things being equal as he is 92 ter, if he has
17 listened to everything, then we would be able to start him on Friday
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
20 MS. KORNER: But there is --
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Do you have something or a witness to fill the
22 gap on Monday then?
23 MS. KORNER: We're going to move -- we're going to move people
24 up. We hope.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: And for Thursday, what will happen on Thursday?
1 This Thursday.
2 MS. KORNER: The witness who is going to start tomorrow - I'm
3 going to explain - we cannot call another witness today and I'm going to
4 explain why when Mr. Hannis has finished his re-examination. Because we
5 are troubled by the matters that Your Honours raised yesterday which is
6 this question of cross-examination estimates. Which, I may say, when we
7 checked I have raised at least three or four times and Mr. Hannis has
8 raised a couple of times. But I thought we could wait until after the
9 witness is finished, because we can't call the next witness.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Just to have an indication as -- as I can see it
11 now, we -- we won't have a witness for Thursday. Because the witness for
12 Wednesday will -- the -- the Wednesday hearing will be sufficient for
13 that witness.
14 MS. KORNER: You have given Mr. Olmsted half an hour and the
15 estimate for cross-examination, at present, for this witness is four
16 hours, I think, in total. So that would take us into Thursday.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay, thank you.
18 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, as I say, I appreciate that -- I don't
19 think that the Defence were not expecting the exhumations to be brought
20 up so quickly; in other words, today rather than Friday, and as it's
21 their argument obviously they need a chance to prepare. But, I mean, if
22 necessary, if we really run short on Thursday, perhaps we could do it
23 then, the Defence having had enough notice.
24 JUDGE HALL
25 So could we have Mr. Davidovic in.
1 [The witness takes the stand]
2 JUDGE HALL
3 Mr. Hannis begins his re-examination, I remind you, you're still on your
5 Yes, Mr. Hannis.
6 MR. HANNIS: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 WITNESS: MILORAD DAVIDOVIC [Resumed]
8 [Witness answered through interpreter]
9 Re-examination by Mr. Hannis:
10 Q. Good morning, Mr. Davidovic.
11 Yesterday, Mr. Cvijetic, at page 13555, 13555, was asking you
12 about the killings of the Sarajlic, Sejmanovic and Malagic families in
13 Bijeljina in September 1992, and he asked if you were able to associate
14 Mr. Stanisic in any way with those killings, and I don't know if it was a
15 matter of interpretation but your answer is a bit confusing.
16 You are recorded in the transcript as having answered that:
17 "I was not able to associate Mr. Stanisic with that killing in
18 any way because as far as this killing is concerned and the other
19 killings in Bijeljina are concerned, that took place before Mico Stanisic
20 became head of that ministry."
21 Now, we have evidence in this case and I don't think it is
22 contested that Mico Stanisic became the minister of the RS Ministry of
23 Interior March 31st, 1992
24 RS MUP interior in 1992.
25 So -- and it's clear that these killings that we're talking about
1 are around September 24th or 25th 1992 regarding those particular three
2 families. So can you help clarify that a little bit?
3 Were you talking about some killings that had happened earlier in
4 early 1992 or 1991? Because that would have been the period of time
5 before Mr. Stanisic became the minister.
6 A. When I talked about the killings in Bijeljina, before
7 Mico Stanisic came to head the ministry, I was referring to the period
8 when the SDS
9 the public security station and serious killings happened in Bijeljina.
10 People were being taken away. They simply disappeared and so on.
11 This happened throughout 1991, that is to say, the second half of
12 1991. Then 1992, the beginning of the war in particular, when Arkan came
13 there. And finally, the killing in September, when the family was
14 killed. I can't remember the last name, I'm sorry. I think that when I
15 spoke about this cycle of events I talked about all of it so I could not
16 bring Mico Stanisic into the picture because I talked about the beginning
17 of the war and when all these killings took place in an organised,
18 planned fashion with a view to intimidating the Muslim population and
19 expelling them from the area or making them flee from the area of
20 Republika Srpska.
21 Q. Okay, I understand.
22 Now I'm talking about particularly about those killings,
23 September 24th, 25th, 1992, of the Sejmanovic, Sarajlic, and Malagic
24 families. You agree Mr. Mico Stanisic was the minister of the interior
25 of the RS at that time?
1 A. Yes. Yes, Mr. Stanisic was minister in that period of time and,
2 again, I point out that the unit commanded by Dusko Malovic at the
3 time -- well, at the time people were saying that that group, that unit
4 had committed the mentioned killings, especially of the Sarajlic family.
5 They were taken out of their house and taken to the banks of the
6 Drina River
7 and it is well known that he was the immediate superior of Dusko Malovic.
8 Q. And these killings were a matter of some public discussion at the
9 time, right? There had been a press release issued by Mirko Blagojevic
10 or the Serbian Radical Party a few days after the killings, indicating
11 that the killings had been done by Dusko Malovic and his unit.
12 Did you know about that?
13 A. Yes. From citizens and other persons who were in touch with me
14 and even from my family, from my wife, I heard that that family was
15 brought and killed. I was in Montenegro
16 generally known thing, especially in the media that that had happened and
17 that it was allegedly committed by Dusko Malovic's group.
18 Q. Would you agree with me it certainly would have come to
19 Mico Stanisic's attention given the fact that it was well-known in the
20 media in Bijeljina where the MUP headquarters were?
21 JUDGE HALL
22 Mr. Cvijetic what is your objection? I anticipate that that is
23 what your objection is going to be.
24 Yes, Mr. Hannis, isn't that the problem with that question?
25 Calls for a conclusion on the part of the witness.
1 MR. HANNIS: Well, Your Honour it is does, but I don't think
2 that -- that should prevent him from answering it. That goes to how much
3 weight you would give that evidence. But, for example, in a drunk
4 driving case, I -- my -- I could ask my wife if, in her opinion, that
5 person appeared to be drunk because that is something within the realm of
6 the average person's experience and knowledge.
7 JUDGE HALL
8 that case you are dealing with an observation. There is nothing wrong
9 with the witnesses giving observation, that is what witnesses ordinarily
10 are expected to do. But here your answer clearly calls for a conclusion.
11 MR. HANNIS: Yes, Your Honour. But my question is to an
12 experienced professional policeman who lived in Bijeljina, who worked in
13 the MUP and would know the kinds of matters that regularly come to the
14 attention of the police. And discussion in the public where there is a
15 press release about the killings that three local families certainly seem
16 to be the kind of thing that a policeman in that town would know about
17 from reading the paper, talking to people, listening to the radio.
18 JUDGE HALL
19 have the evidence of the fact that the number one accused was a minister
20 at the time, and it is probably an inference, a reasonable inference,
21 that you would, at the appropriate time, invite the Chamber to draw. But
22 I think that's as far as you can take it as a question for the witness.
23 MR. HANNIS: I take your point, Your Honour. I will save that
24 for submissions later on.
25 Q. In connection with that event, we showed you yesterday a
1 statement from Mico Stanisic that was submitted to the Prosecutor's
2 office, and you saw that bundle of documents during proofing that came
3 from the regional Prosecutor named Lija Sukalic. Do you know him? Do
4 you know who he is?
5 A. The name is Alija not Lija. I know that prosecutor personally.
6 And I know that he was --
7 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the rest of the
9 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] We discussed it yesterday and I
10 did not deal with any one of these documents. Even the Prosecutor did
11 not raise the issue or deal with these documents in the direct
13 MR. HANNIS: Well, yes I did. I showed the witness Exhibit
14 P1543, which is the package of documents.
15 But, Your Honours, the only reason I ask the question was that
16 when I showed the exhibit to the witness yesterday in e-court it was
17 listed as Exhibit P1543. I took it that that document was already in
18 evidence. I'm informed now that apparently it has only been marked for
19 identification. Since this witness has now testified about some portion
20 of that, he knows the Prosecutor, the document itself appears to be in
21 regular in form, and on page 1, the letter -- the cover letter from the
22 prosecutor indicates this material is being sent to The Hague for its
23 consideration. I think there is no issue that it is authenticity, and I
24 would now ask that it be admitted into evidence rather than marked MFI.
25 JUDGE HALL
1 It seems to me, Mr. Cvijetic, that if only for the sake of
2 tidiness and completeness, the MFI
3 Let's go ahead.
4 But do you have -- do you have a response to the application?
5 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Of course, Your Honour. But not
6 through this witness. If I'm not mistaken, these documents are dated
7 2004. The question was where the witness was at the time, whether he
8 knew about the substance of all of these documents and whether he
9 participated in any way in all of this. That was done only in 2004.
10 JUDGE HALL
11 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, you even have a set
12 of 200 pages of different documents and now to admit under a single
13 number this kind of compilation -- well, I can't even count them now. It
14 is not one document. It is an entire investigation.
15 MR. HANNIS: That's precisely the point and precisely why it is
16 put together as one exhibit. It only makes sense when it is a complete
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE HALL
20 now be marked as a full exhibit.
21 MR. HANNIS: Thank you, Your Honours.
22 Q. Mr. Davidovic, at page 13562 yesterday, Mr. Cvijetic was asking
23 you about provision in the -- in the law of the Republika Srpska that
24 talked about allowing police officials from another republic to take
25 actions within the RS.
1 And in answer to a specific question related to that, you said
2 that when you came to the Republika Srpska you did not come in accordance
3 with that article but you became [sic] on a request issued by the organs
4 of the Republika Srpska and you mention how Mr. Karadzic in his
5 conversation with Prime Minister Panic had requested help.
6 But I take it in that answer you're talking about your second
7 trip to the RS with your -- with men from your unit when you came in
8 probably early July 1992. But it was a different situation on your first
9 visit with your men from the RS MUP when you came in probably early
10 April. Because on that first trip, that's when Kertes and Gracanin told
11 you needed to take vacation and volunteer to go.
12 On that first trip when you came, you didn't wear your federal
14 A. Yes. I explained that yesterday. The first trip and the second
15 trip, I said unequivocally how I went the first and second time, and I
16 also talked about the authority or the Federal Secretariat in relation to
17 the Republican Secretariat, what subordination was and when we could act
18 in concert. I think I explained that yesterday.
19 Q. Thank you. The next topic relates to Exhibit P591, which was
20 shown to you. It's transcript page 13564.
21 This exhibit is a report by General Tolimir about various
22 paramilitary groups that were active on the territory in Bosnia
23 RS, and it's quite a specific question I want to deal with. He said:
24 "You will agree with me that the Ministry of Interior of
25 Republika Srpska, in order to deal with numerous paramilitary formations,
1 needed support of all structures and communities of Republika Srpska; am
2 I right?"
3 Your answer was: "Yes."
4 In addition to the support of those structures, would you agree
5 it was also necessary to have the political will to do something about
6 those paramilitary groups?
7 A. Yes, agree. Without that political will, I mean, that is a
8 decisive factor in all of it, there can be no success and there can be no
9 result. I think that that showed what the reason was, why everything was
10 annulled after the actions we carried out in 1992 and everything went on
11 just the way it had been. I think that there was no political will to
12 have these problems resolved. If you remember when I talked about the
13 meeting between General Mladic and President Karadzic in Lukavica, I said
14 that Karadzic pointed out a particular question at the time, that it
15 should not be allowed that a Serb should shoot at a Serb because that
16 would cause terrible problems. And I think that throughout the war, even
17 when illegal things did occur, when crimes were committed, when murders
18 were committed, when persons were arrested, from the top political
19 echelons there was always an interpretation to the effect: Let these
20 people go, don't let a Serb arrest a Serb. And that was the opinion that
21 prevailed, at least where I was.
22 Q. Thank you. You mentioned page 13562 yesterday that you -- during
23 the course of planning for the operation in Zvornik that was carried out
24 in late July, that you found out that in Celopek there were Muslims
25 detained there and that some had been killed. Did you have an
1 opportunity to go to Celopek during that planning for the Zvornik
3 A. Yes. Before I carried out the operation in Zvornik, I went to --
4 two operational reconnaissance missions. Apart from the information that
5 I received from the structures that requested me to come there, the
6 structures in Zvornik, I went there on my own to see where those
7 positions were, with how many people, how strong they were, what kind of
8 environments they had, and how I could fight them with what forces. And
9 when I went to Celopek for the second time or passed it by, I saw members
10 of the reserve police there at the centre securing it. And later on, I
11 learned that inside that centre there were people who had been
12 apprehended and taken there by force and that there had even been murders
13 which was indeed the reason for me to make the acquaintance of the chief
14 of the security of the VRS, Mr. Tolimir, who insisted that the army be
15 involved, and that later on measures be taken and criminal reports filed
16 against the perpetrators of those crimes.
17 Q. Thank you. I want to show you next a document, 1D75.
18 Mr. Cvijetic showed this to you yesterday. And at page 13567, he -- he
19 asked you if it faithfully reflected how the action developed.
20 And you said: "Yes, very briefly it does reflect the situation."
21 I had a question though, if I can see the English, I'll -- the
22 last paragraph says:
23 "Serb Republic Bosnia-Herzegovina, Ministry of Interior, police
24 detachment, together with the Serb armed forces military police members,
25 performed this action of disarmament."
1 There is no mention of you and your group, but you took a major
2 part in that action, did you not?
3 A. You know what? I must say something that you won't like. When
4 the Yellow Wasps operations in Zvornik was carried out, many of those who
5 were in powers, and especially after the events after the end and what is
6 going on there The Hague
7 Yellow Wasps and others who were involved in the events in Bijeljina, all
8 that reflected the will of the political structures and the MUP, too,
9 that --
10 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat. The
11 interpreter doesn't understand, can't follow.
12 MR. HANNIS:
13 Q. I'm sorry. I raised my hand to stop you because I heard in my
14 headphones the interpreter saying, Could the witness please repeat his
15 answer because they don't understand and can't follow you.
16 Could you try it again. And go as slow as you possibly can.
17 Thank you.
18 THE INTERPRETER: Could both microphones be turned off, please,
19 for the witness.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When I spoke about the involvement
21 and my work in the Yellow Wasps operations, I said that in that operation
22 that we carried out then, objectively speaking the MUP of the RS, based
23 on the authority it received from the political structures at the time
24 and which means from Mr. Mico Stanisic I went to Zvornik at the time and
25 carried out the operation of the arrest of those persons.
1 In that operation, which was rather demanding and difficult,
2 military units also took part. The military -- it was the military
3 judiciary at the time that processed perpetrators of war crimes and they
4 wanted to work on those cases directly and I enabled them to do so. I
5 asked the chief of security, Mr. Tolimir, to assign army members to do
6 that, and Mr. Salapura was involved in the planning of the carrying out
7 of that operation. He also a high-ranking official in the VRS and that
8 is how they were also involved in that operation, but they were under my
9 immediate command, they were subordinate to me, and they carried out what
10 I had requested them to do.
11 Later on, many of them presented that as their personal success
12 towards some politicians, but I can say what the operation was in a --
13 really like and who was involved in it.
14 Q. Well, I guess that's -- that's part of why I'm asking the
15 question. You've told us in your statement and in prior testimony that
16 you were basically the initiator of that operation, that you planned it,
17 you were in overall command. But you and your unit are not mentioned in
18 this document, and I think you told us it was signed by Goran Macar. It
19 seems to be some sort of document maybe intended as a press release, and
20 you're not getting any credit. Can you tell us why that is?
21 A. I didn't expect recognition or acknowledgment from anybody,
22 especially not from Macar or the people who worked him. I worked based
23 on the authority that I received primarily from my minister, and the
24 reason why I came to the RS, namely the disarmament of paramilitary
25 units, I was in authority received from Mico Stanisic and Cedo Kljajic,
1 and I must repeat, when I received that authority nobody limited me in
2 the planning, the detailed analysis and the carrying out of that
3 operation. Nobody restricted me in saying you should do it this way or
4 that way. I didn't even say to Minister Stanisic on which day I would
5 enter Zvornik and when the operation would be conducted, nor did he ask
6 me. But I did it totally autonomously, without anybody interfering, and
7 I think we were able to carry it out with using the advantage of
8 surprise. But now some individuals are trying to present it as the
9 success of military security, and so on, but that's how they want to
10 present it. I'm saying what it was really like.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 MR. ZECEVIC: I'm sorry, Mr. Hannis, page 16, line 19, I believe
13 the witness said that Mico Stanisic and Cedo Kljajic gave him the task or
14 support for this action and it wasn't recorded. Maybe you can clarify
15 that with the witness.
16 MR. HANNIS:
17 Q. Mr. Davidovic, the transcript says -- there's apparently a
18 question about something maybe missed. It says: "... Cedo Kljajic, and
19 I must repeat when I received that authority nobody limited me in the
21 Did you say that neither Mico Stanisic nor Cedo Kljajic limited
22 you in planning the operation?
23 A. Yes. They were the ones who said that I had full authority and
24 that they would not restrict me in any way, nor would they give me
25 instructions as to do this or don't do that. They said, Do what you
1 think is best to prevent that conduct and enable the illegal [as
2 interpreted] authorities to carry out -- to perform their functions that
3 they should.
4 Q. And in -- in that same conversation with them, is that when they
5 told you that Karadzic and Krajisnik were tired of what was going on with
6 the Yellow Wasps?
7 A. Well, you know, I was told then that they had many comments and
8 that even Karadzic and Krajisnik insisted that that very paramilitary
9 formation be disarmed. Because there was much information that they were
10 harassing people there, stealing vehicles, looting and committing all
11 sorts of crimes. Many high-ranking politicians and people from the
12 economy at Pale had many problems with them, and even --
13 THE INTERPRETER: We didn't hear the name.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Was robbed of his vehicle. They
15 made some people, including Velibor Ostojic, to eat grass when they --
16 when they met them, and so on. I don't know whether that is true though.
17 But that was -- that was the talk at the time.
18 MR. HANNIS:
19 Q. The interpreters indicated they didn't get the name that you
20 mentioned in connection with a person whose car was taken. Was that
21 Mr. Ostojic, the minister of information?
22 A. Yes. At the time, Velibor Ostojic was mentioned as minister, but
23 there were other persons apart from Velibor Ostojic.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 MR. ZECEVIC: Again, a part of witness's answer was not recorded.
1 I don't know if we want to return back or ask for verification.
2 The part where he says that he doesn't remember if -- if
3 Cedo Kljajic or Mico Stanisic or somebody else told him about these
5 MR. HANNIS:
6 Q. Is that correct? Is that what you said, Mr. Davidovic?
7 A. No, no. I said that they had informed me accordingly, but only
8 the section about eating grass is uncertain. I'm not sure whether I
9 heard it from them or whether I heard that later. They were talking to
10 me about serious problems about beating people up, robbing their
11 property, and harassing them and so on.
12 Q. Thank you. Let me go next to another topic and show you
13 Exhibit P1269. This is a document that was shown to you at transcript
14 page 13585 by Defence counsel yesterday when he was asking you about the
15 disciplinary measures taken against Dragan Andan.
16 MR. HANNIS: And if we could go to, I think it's the next page in
17 both English and B/C/S.
18 Q. This is dated 9th of September, 1992. And I'm sorry, I think we
19 have to go to page 3.
20 Do you remember seeing this yesterday?
21 A. Yes, yes.
22 The last paragraph, item 1. It says Dragan Andan temporarily
23 suspended and -- I don't think I need go on reading the last paragraph.
24 Q. Okay [Microphone not activated].
25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
1 MR. HANNIS: I'm sorry. Could we go to the next page in B/C/S
2 and the English page that shows item number 3 in this list.
3 You were also shown item number 2 about Danilo Vukovic being
4 disciplined. I want you to have a look at item number 3 in this list.
5 This shows that Branko Stevic was appointed chief of the Bijeljina SJB in
6 September 1992.
7 Does that refresh your memory now about who would have been the
8 chief of the SJB Bijeljina in September of 1992?
9 A. The chief of the SJB at the time was Sinisa Karan [phoen], I
10 believe. But a bit earlier, he was transferred to the position of the
11 chief of centre, possibly when Dragan was suspended. So I believe that
12 somebody else succeeded him. It may have been Karan. I'm not sure about
13 all this, but this man - what's his name - Dusko Adnan, was probably the
14 acting chief, but whether he immediately succeeded Branko Stevic or there
15 was somebody else in that position before him, I don't know, because I
16 came in August, so there may have been some things in the preceding
17 period that I don't know of. I'm not sure what was going on.
18 Q. Okay. Thank you. At page 13586, Mr. Cvijetic, at the bottom of
19 the page and going on to the following page, it says:
20 "You told us that almost all paramilitary formations entered
21 Republika Srpska claiming they were volunteers, patriots to -- coming to
22 fight on behalf of the Serbian people; am I right? "
23 Your answer was:
24 "Yes, you are."
25 I'm not sure where you previously supposedly told us that almost
1 all paramilitary formations entered. Would you agree that many of the
2 paramilitary formations in the Republika Srpska were -- were home-grown,
3 if I may say, were locals, not necessarily just people from outside the
5 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I believe that this is a leading
6 question, that the witness has already been offered an answer.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I belive that I should answer this
8 question anyway. If you allow me, I will continue.
9 MR. HANNIS:
10 Q. I'll allow you, if the Judges will.
11 JUDGE HALL
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The arrival of the paramilitary
13 formations was something that coincided with the beginning of the war in
14 the RS. To my mind, paramilitary formations principally were arriving
15 from the Republic of Serbia
16 supporters and later there were volunteers from various areas, Serbia
18 various parts of the RS. And the local authorities more or less offered
19 them accommodation and logistical report and everything the paramilitary
20 formations that had come in from outside needed. I'm primarily referring
21 to those who came in from outside.
22 It's a fact that the paramilitary formations that had come in
23 from elsewhere were later joined by some local thugs, those who had been
24 trouble-makers even before because they soon found common interests and
25 acted together. The passage where the number of 4- to 5.000 is mentioned
1 is realistic, I believe. It's a realistic estimate for all of the RS.
2 They were -- those were people who were bloodthirsty, eager to kill
3 others, hoodlums in a word, and they had ambitions of their own. They
4 are the dregs of humanity.
5 Q. Do you recall seeing in General Tolimir's late July report about
6 the various paramilitary groups operating in the RS, that there were a
7 number of local groups, some of them related to the SDS? Among them
8 there was mention of Mauzer, Ljubisa Savic, and the Serb Volunteer Guard
9 in Bijeljina, reference to the SOS
10 A. Yes, you're right. But mind you, at the beginning of the war,
11 the SDS
12 Communists and that they cannot defend Serbianhood, that a new elite of
13 the Serb people had risen and that they -- that there were not dealing
14 with a new enlightened Serbian national consciousness and they wanted to
15 build an army of their own.
16 In Bijeljina, there was Mauzer. In Lubik [phoen], there was this
17 radical. In Zvornik, there were also three to four groups. And they
18 were basically units of the SDS
19 requested to do so by the party, not by the military authorities, not by
20 the police authorities, but by the SDS
21 party. And these are the paramilitary formations that had a local
22 character and that were from those towns and villages. In every town
23 they had a local leader, some warlord of sorts and who decided -- who had
24 the last word about everything. He was the master of life and death.
25 MR. ZECEVIC: 22:9 it is recorded "now by the military," but I
1 believe it should be "not by the military, not by the police
2 authorities." Thank you.
3 MR. HANNIS:
4 Q. Did you hear that, Mr. Davidovic? That seems to make sense. Is
5 that what you meant to say, that "not by the military" instead of "now by
6 the military."
7 A. Yes, yes.
8 Q. Two last topics.
9 You -- you testified about being contacted by Mr. Mico Stanisic
10 and meeting with him in late 2004 or early 2005. Do you recall that?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Was the only topic he asked you about in that meeting related to
13 the September 1992 killings of those three Muslim families?
14 A. No. I believe the topic was only mentioned in passing. It was
15 not the main subject of discussion. I was asked whether anybody had
16 spoken about that and I said yes, but as I hadn't been involved I didn't
17 say anything then. But I did say that talking to Dusko Malovic, upon
18 returning from Pljevlje, I spoke with him at the Bosanska villa and Dusko
19 said to me that his unit had done that person to the exclusive orders of
20 Drago Vukovic.
21 But as you're coming back to the issue of the Sarajlic family,
22 and what I said earlier, I must give a more comprehensive answer
23 concerning that topic, if you allow me. I will be brief.
24 I saw that for the first time when I came here to The Hague and I
25 had the opportunity to scrutinise it in detail and I read it through, and
1 I must return to what has been said earlier. When I was saying that
2 Mico Stanisic was the head and that he directly commanded the unit, I
3 replied that he was the one who brought the unit to Pale and later to
4 Bijeljina and that he commanded it. That the duty of that unit was to
5 secure facilities Minister Stanisic and carry out other tasks that had to
6 do with the cabinet.
7 Talking about the Sarajlic family and the connections of
8 Mico Stanisic and Dusko Malovic, I must clearly state that -- how it was.
9 When I read through the materials, the documents, I understood that the
10 leading structures of the MUP wanted to, and in the beginning they were
11 successful, wanted to cover up the murder. As far as I was able to tell
12 from the documents, when the bodies were found in the morning and the
13 citizens had reported that, the members of the reserve force went to the
14 site, and, pursuant to the orders of the reserve commander, they threw
15 the bodies back in the water and tried to cover up the traces. And later
16 on, they reported to the station in Bijeljina that they had done the job,
17 they had informed their commander, and then I believe it was Skoric and
18 other forensic technicians went to the site and found some traces but
19 they didn't -- they weren't able to interpret them.
20 Drago Vukovic later on tried to present it the following way:
21 That a collegium was held, chaired by Tomo Kovac, with the purpose of
22 establishing a team to investigate the case, but nobody of those present
23 ever corroborated that. There were some statements by Simic and others,
24 but let me not go into that. Anyway, it was clear that the local
25 leadership invested the greatest efforts, and when you remember that
1 Muhic said, Why did you publish that? Karadzic wants me to arrest you.
2 So they didn't want to make it public and I think that they
3 consciously covered up -- were covering up the fact -- the facts and
4 maybe Karadzic knew about it. Possibly only through the media.
5 Anyway, everybody tried to -- tried not to inform Mico Stanisic
6 of that.
7 Speaking about Mico and Dusko Malovic as a unit, I mentioned
8 that, but I didn't say that Mico Stanisic was, indeed, informed of the
9 murder. I couldn't put that into the context of whether or not
10 Mico Stanisic knew about the murder or was trying to cover it up. But
11 later on, when the International Red Cross started looking for the
12 persons, then it became public, that there had been a mass murder, and up
13 to this day questions were asked why nobody had conducted an
14 investigation. And I still fail to understand why they were unable to --
15 to follow that up to the end. It was very -- a very simple case. But
16 even today, it is unresolved.
17 Q. Thank you. And, lastly, at page 13590, Mr. Cvijetic asked you
18 about whether or not Mico Stanisic had given you absolute authority to
19 fight against paramilitaries.
20 You said you didn't have any reason not to have that kind of full
21 power, but you say: Mico Stanisic, he did not hinder you in any way.
22 Although he didn't hinder you, did ever ask you, for example, to
23 arrest Arkan, or Arkan's Men for the known crimes that they had
24 perpetrated during their presence in the RS?
25 A. I have to say that when I was sent to Bosnia the second time, to
1 Republika Srpska, my only task was, and my obligation, was clearly
2 defined. Namely, that in Republika Srpska, I should arrest all
3 paramilitary formations without any constraint, and I was not hindered in
4 any way, in terms of any kind of selection. That's the order I had from
5 my minister at the time, Pavle Bulatovic was my minister. He
6 unequivocally gave me full powers and he said that the prime minister,
7 Mr. Panic, stood behind that order and that I had the full support of the
8 organ that was sending me there and that I would also have the support of
9 the organs of Republika Srpska.
10 When I came to Bijeljina, Mico Stanisic talked to me, as did
11 Cedo Kljajic, and they said to me then that, regardless of name, gender,
12 everything that had happened, wherever it is my assessment that the
13 paramilitaries took power and did unlawful things, I could arrest them
14 and so on.
15 The first day I came to Bijeljina, in the SUP, I found Pejo, a
16 self-styled general who headed that service. I found Sasa, who
17 introduced himself as the commander of the police station in Bijeljina.
18 And on that day, that Pejo slapped a Muslim policeman in the face, one of
19 my policemen. Simic was his name. I knew him from earlier on. He
20 slapped him, I don't know why, I don't know for what reason. At that
21 moment I entered the office of the chief and then he came to me. He
22 started gesticulating and he was shouting who was I, and so on and so
23 forth. He wore the insignia of a chief inspector of the police that I
24 had as well, although I was an official organ, and I had received the
25 insignia through regular procedure and I had that as an officer of that
1 rank and he put these insignia on just like that. I said, Who sent you?
2 And I --
3 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not understand the rest of
4 the sentence.
5 MR. HANNIS:
6 Q. Let me stop you there because the interpreter said she didn't
7 hear -- didn't understand the rest of the sentence.
8 You've talked about this in your prior testimony and in your
9 written statement. Can I -- can I stop you and just ask you a couple
10 specific questions.
11 Sasa and Pejo that you just mentioned, were they Arkan's Men?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Did you -- did you arrest them?
14 A. No, no. They fled that very moment. They left the building.
15 They fled from Bijeljina and they never returned to Bijeljina. None of
17 Q. Good. With regard to Arkan, you've told us in your statement and
18 I quote, paragraph 125:
19 "Mico Stanisic had made a deal with Arkan for him to come into
21 wanted and take it to Serbia
22 So it's true Mico Stanisic never asked you specifically to arrest
23 Arkan because he had a deal with him to allow him to loot; isn't that
25 A. Well, look, a deal, in the sense of Mico Stanisic calling them to
2 Ratko Mladic's when I first spoke to him at Lukavica at the garrison
3 there. That's when Ratko told me that there was lootings going on, and
4 so on, and that Mico had called to Sarajevo
5 Arkan's Guard and gave them certain rights. I think that they were
6 talking about Bascarsija and said, Look you can take whatever you want,
7 whatever you liberate, whatever you take in that sense, all of that is
8 yours. That's what General Ratko Mladic said to me then when he was
9 telling me how these paramilitaries were not coming spontaneously or by
10 accident, but rather that they were enjoying somebody's support.
11 However, in later procedures that I undertook in order to disarm
12 paramilitaries, Mico Stanisic never said, Do not arrest Arkan or whoever.
13 I actually have to say that, had I had the opportunity to arrest him, I
14 would have done it with pleasure, and if I had any possibility to come
15 across him, I would have arrested him with pleasure. I would have
16 brutally tied his hands and brought him before a court of law and then I
17 would see what would happen.
18 There was no hindrance in that sense. It's not that
19 Mr. Mico Stanisic said, Do not arrest Arkan or Arkan's forces, no.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. HANNIS: I have no further questions, Your Honour.
22 Questioned by the Court:
23 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Davidovic, may have I one question to you,
24 just for clarification.
25 Because you told us today that the paramilitary groups which were
1 formed locally, were groups that were controlled by the SDS and by the
2 Crisis Staffs but not by the army.
3 Is that a correct understanding of your testimony?
4 A. Yes, precisely.
5 JUDGE HARHOFF: Now, through other evidence which we have heard
6 in this trial, we have been led to understand that members or even groups
7 that were characterised as local paramilitary groups were, from time to
8 time, resubordinated to the army.
9 Can you confirm this?
10 A. I have to clarify.
11 From time to time, when these paramilitary formations came, I
12 mean, they all came with the purported wish and intention to place
13 themselves under the command of the Army of Republika Srpska. The Army
14 of Republika Srpska, the dilemma was, at first who was whose army. Would
15 the JNA take over the function of the Serb army or would another army be
16 established exclusively under the authority of the SDS.
17 At first, they did place themselves under the command of the army
18 with the intention of going to the front line but that was only at the
19 very outset. Later on, they chose whether they would go and whose
20 command they would place themselves under and usually they don't want to
21 be under anybody's command. And then when they enter the kind of
22 relationships they did, they freely did what it was that they wanted to.
23 I mean, they barged into state agencies, I'm primarily referring to the
25 homes and permits for these weapons, and also if they took things that
1 belonged to people who did not come from that particular town, for
2 instance, or if there were -- they belong to persons -- if vehicles, for
3 instance, belonged to persons who were from the Croat Federation then
4 they would take that away, and later on they looted only the property of
5 Muslims. They looted their property, they expelled them, they even
6 killed them.
7 JUDGE HARHOFF: Did, in Bijeljina, any of the paramilitary groups
8 attempt to put themselves under the command of the police; do you know?
9 A. One of the groups to put themselves under the command of the
10 police? Did I understand that properly?
11 JUDGE HARHOFF: That was my question, yes.
12 A. There were no attempts to be placed under the command of the
14 For example, when Arkan came to Bijeljina, he took over the
15 function of the police. And he is the one who decided what the police
16 would do. It's not that he would be placed under the command of the
17 police. He took over the function of the police. That very same day, he
18 appointed his own man as a chief there, a self-styled general called
19 Pejo, then this Sasa who left the army, he was appointed head of the
20 station and he decided what would be done. The police did not try to
21 oppose them or did not oppose them as such. When Arkan came, and when he
22 established that camp that they had near the Drina River
23 Bijeljina, they liberated Bijeljina. I shall take the liberty of using
24 that word. That's how they treated themselves. They treated themselves
25 as liberators. They were taking things away from people. They started
1 killing Muslim the very first day and looting their property. They were
2 taking their property out of Bijeljina. I can only tell you a few
3 details. For instance, they took a fire brigade truck that had been paid
4 for by the citizens themselves, citizens themselves had contributed to
5 the payments for that vehicle and they took that. They also took the
6 buses of Transturisty from Tuzla
7 department store and they took all sort of goods that were there.
8 Then, in the SUP
9 criminals. They even entered the court and they broke safes in the
10 court, and Jesuric Predrag was the head of the police at the time, and
11 they hid in the police station. Imagine, they had orders not to leave.
12 The police were ordered to sit there in the SUP and during that time, the
13 paramilitaries, headed by Arkan, did what they did and that was presented
14 as normal state of affairs. No one wanted to say a word about that, no
15 one wanted to oppose that, because allegedly they greeted Arkan as a
16 liberator. Well, later on, they said that, Yes, he did liberate us but
17 he liberated us of people and property, objects. That's the way it was.
18 JUDGE HARHOFF: Just to clarify, when exactly was this; do you
20 A. It was the beginning of April, April/May. Beginning of April. I
21 think it was the 1st of April, that's when it started, and it was in
23 When they liberated Bijeljina of things that they looted and
24 people they killed, then they went to liberate, as it were, Zvornik in
25 the same way.
1 JUDGE HARHOFF: And do you know if these events were reported up
2 through the system to the MUP?
3 A. Well, at the time, the MUP was comprehensive. At that moment the
5 anyone ever reported anything about that at the time. I read an
6 interview that was given by Jesuric Predrag, I read it the other day over
7 here, and he says unequivocally, thanks to him, I mean, he's talking
8 about me, I made it possible for Arkan to liberate Bijeljina and I did
9 not want to inform the centre in Tuzla or Sarajevo because why would I
10 inform them when they are not helping me in this way. They are just
11 asking us to withdraw weapons and to decrease the level of personnel in
12 the police. That is what he said. He thought that they were in power
13 now, their time had come, and they could do whatever they wanted to.
14 JUDGE HARHOFF: So just to conclude, to your knowledge, the CSB
15 in Tuzla
16 that your testimony?
17 A. Yes. I'm absolutely sure that no one ever informed Tuzla about
18 that, let alone Sarajevo
19 information that anyone had ever done any such thing.
20 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you, sir. I have no more questions.
21 JUDGE HALL
22 the Tribunal. You are now released, and we wish you a safe journey back
23 to your home.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
25 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, I do want to tender his 92 ter package
1 before he's gone.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 [The witness withdrew]
4 JUDGE HALL
5 the 92 ter package?
6 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Not for the time being,
7 Your Honour.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Hannis, there are two transcripts, if I'm not
9 wrong, it's 1046 -- 10476 and 10477. Why -- why should they be in your
10 package? If I'm not wrong, it's two times four pages, and witness -- it
11 is not -- it is not a testimony of the witness. It is just procedural
13 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, if I recall, I don't have those in
14 front of me right now, but there was an issue concerning the
15 cross-examination of that witness, where, in my view, in the argument of
16 the Prosecution at the time, that was something very unethical,
17 allegations made that he had committed crimes and stolen property from
18 Muslims, when it came obvious that those alleged victims were contacted
19 and said no such thing ever happened. We wanted to put that in because
20 you're going to have evaluate this witness's credibility, and, in my
21 view, if you didn't see how that eventually played out and was resolved,
22 you might think there was something to the Defence allegations in that
23 case that this witness had been engaged in some sort of illegal activity.
24 I think the procedural matters, if those are the pages, I believe
25 they are, and eventually resulted in a finding by the Trial Chamber that
1 there was no good-faith basis for asking those questions and the
2 Trial Chamber was going to give no weight to those allegations, that's
3 why I put it in.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Thank you.
5 MR. HANNIS: May I be excused then, Your Honours?
6 JUDGE HALL
7 an exhibit.
8 THE REGISTRAR: The Registry will assign exhibit numbers in due
9 course, Your Honours.
10 JUDGE HALL
11 MR. HANNIS: I guess it's time for the break.
12 JUDGE HALL
13 should take a break and return?
14 MS. KORNER: Yes. I think it's going to take me some time to
15 resolve matters because I want to deal with the whole question of
16 witnesses who are coming here and the Defence [Overlapping speakers].
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zecevic, before we take the break, I would
18 like to know whether there's any chance that you could be ready to engage
19 in the exhumation discussion on Thursday instead of Friday?
20 MR. ZECEVIC: Well, Your Honours, it depends how early we will
21 adjourn today because I have to prepare the next witness, and -- and I'm
22 cross-examining the next witness.
23 If we adjourn earlier, I will be ready to do it on Thursday. If
24 not, then it is going to be Friday, I'm sorry.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. Because I -- I'm asking it because
1 that could help us with avoiding the loss of an entire court day so let's
2 see what happens. Thank you.
3 MR. ZECEVIC: Your Honours, I'm -- believe me, I'm willing to
4 assist the Trial Chamber as well as anybody else to -- to speed things as
5 much as possible. But I cannot multiply myself, I'm sorry.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
7 --- Recess taken at 10.36 a.m.
8 --- On resuming at 10.59 a.m.
9 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, yesterday I heard Your Honours'
10 remarks at the end of the proceedings about the, as it were, the
11 non-sitting time because witnesses weren't available. Can I start what
12 I'm about to say by simply reminding Your Honours that I'm sure
13 Your Honours don't need reminding that if there is spare time, there are
14 still some 26 or so undealt with motions, in particular, one that goes
15 back to May of last year, which we -- I haven't had a ruling on, not to
16 mention 13 or so where we've had part rulings, oral rulings with written
17 decisions to follow. So, I mean, there is -- can I just put it on that
18 basis, if there is time available, there are still those matters
20 However, on the issue of the gap that has been appearing recently
21 with witnesses, largely it's because of the cross-examination estimates.
22 Now, Your Honours, we've been raising this periodically since effectively
23 March of last year when this started, but it has gotten a lot worse in
24 recent months. And on the 12th of April, indeed I raised the very
25 question about whether or not we should abide by, when planning
1 witnesses, the cross-examination estimates that were given. In fact, it
2 was more in the context of whether Your Honours were proposing to limit
3 cross-examination as opposed to what's happening now, and the upshot was
4 we were told that the Defence hadn't really exceeded the -- as it were,
5 the allowance that was given for cross-examination, and, at the end of
6 the discussion, Judge Harhoff said that, you, the Trial Chamber, would
7 see how it went.
8 Your Honour, we did a survey yesterday of the estimates that we
9 were given and the actual time taken for cross-examination, and in some
10 cases, it -- it's really been pretty dreadful. In most cases,
11 cross-examination has not taken as long as the Defence told us. In some
12 particular cases, for example, this is going back some time now, but for
13 ST-150, the estimate of cross-examination was two hours, and neither team
14 cross-examined. For ST-189, it was six hours in total. One team -- the
15 Stanisic team didn't cross-examine at all, and the Zupljanin team took
16 1.5 hours. For ST-127, the estimate altogether was four hours and 15
17 minutes. The actual total time was 54 minutes, and no cross-examination
18 from the Zupljanin team, but they were the 15 minutes, and I think that
19 was just right. That is effectively what has been happening and because
20 we have been abiding by the decision that Your Honours took that we
21 should take cross-examination into account when arranging for witnesses
22 that's why there has been, by and large, these gaps.
23 It has not helped also, I'm afraid, by the age-old problem, which
24 I have raised again on a number of occasions, the Defence requests to see
25 the witnesses. For example, the reason we can't call tomorrow's witness
1 today is both Defence asked to see him. He arrived yesterday morning.
2 They saw him during the afternoon. VWS taken him back to the hotel at
3 5.00 unless there is a good reason not to. And as we have pointed out,
4 we thought it's oppressive to have the Defence seeing them and then the
5 Prosecution, so they become absolutely exhausted when they are going
6 through different sorts of things. That is an added, extra, reason why
7 we can't just go -- or we haven't been able to call witnesses, as it
8 were, one after the other.
9 Your Honours, our suggestion is simply this: We will, from now
10 on, ignore the estimates that we're given by the Defence when arranging
11 for witnesses. We will, as an express, back-fill so that we always have
12 witnesses available. Now, effectively the only way we can do that at
13 this stage of the case because we're coming to the end, as it were, of
14 the witnesses who have been witnesses all along, is to back-fill with the
15 witnesses who will be coving the adjudicated facts because they're short.
16 In order to do that before the site visit, we need Your Honours to
17 rescind the six-week gap that you ordered between disclosure and calling
18 the witness. We have disclosed for I think the last launch will go out
19 today. We will have disclosed for everything for the witnesses we
20 propose to call viva voce. Those searches have been completed. In most
21 cases, very little has been disclosed, one document maybe a couple.
22 Transcripts a statements had already been disclosed beforehand.
23 So if Your Honours want us to make sure that we always have a
24 witness available, if cross-examination is shorter than anticipated, then
25 we are asking Your Honours to rescind the six weeks and turn it into -- I
1 think we can -- if it's four weeks, we can start calling witnesses from,
2 I think, next week.
3 So that's -- that's the situation.
4 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you, Ms. Korner.
5 We did touch upon this issue yesterday, and I think I recall that
6 Mr. Zecevic told us that he had, in fact, notified the Prosecution that
7 he would probably not need the -- was it six hours.
8 MS. KORNER: [Microphone not activated]
9 JUDGE HARHOFF: Six hours required for the witness yesterday.
10 And so the practical issue seems to be that the Defence teams provide the
11 Chamber and the Prosecution with an estimation of the time they will need
12 for cross-examination, and they do so quite far ahead of the witnesses'
13 actual appearance in court. And in that situation, I understand that, to
14 be on the safe side, most Defence teams would tend to - just do be sure -
15 tend to overestimate a bit the time they might need so that we do not
16 come into the embarrassing situation that we have to keep witnesses here
17 much longer than they had anticipated.
18 So that's -- that's the starting point. But then, as we get
19 closer to the time when the witness is actually appearing, apparently the
20 Defence is able to then reassess its time -- the time that it needs for
21 its cross-examination. And I was under the impression that the Defence
22 teams, by and large, do notify the Prosecution, I don't know how much
23 time in advance, but I would imagine about a week or ten days perhaps,
24 prior to the witness's arrival, that they will need this amount of time
25 or less.
1 So my question is: What is really the practice between the
2 parties about the communication that takes place between the two parties
3 about the time that is needed for -- for chief and cross? Is there any
4 communication and what is the practice?
5 MS. KORNER: The estimates, as Your Honours say, fairly well in
6 advance so that we can plan when the witnesses come. We do not get told
7 at all, sometimes, unless we ask, Are you actually going to take six
8 hours with this witness. If we're told, we're told when the witness here
9 or at court. It's as simple as that.
10 JUDGE HARHOFF: So in my understanding, that is perhaps the issue
11 that needs to be ruled upon by the Chamber, or to be looked upon by the
12 Chamber that we should perhaps try to have agreement in the courtroom
13 about a minimum time for the Defence to notify the Prosecution and the
15 MS. KORNER: [Overlapping speakers] ...
16 JUDGE HARHOFF: Please do not overlap, madam.
17 MS. KORNER: I'm so sorry.
18 The difficulty, Your Honour, is this: That it has to be further
19 in advance because of VWS organising not only passports and the rest of
20 but visas. And this is one of the problems with the witness that we want
21 to call on Friday, I'm told, is that it takes five days, according to
22 VWS, to organise a visa.
23 [Trial Chamber confers]
24 JUDGE HARHOFF: Let's hear the Defence teams.
25 MR. ZECEVIC: Your Honours, I will speak in Serbian in order to
1 be very clear.
2 [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to be completely fair
3 to our friends from the Prosecution. Immediately before the beginning of
4 their examination-in-chief, we do state that our cross-examination of
5 that witness will be shorter. That is because that is the first moment
6 when we are in a position to realistically determine how much time we
7 will need for the cross-examination of the witness.
8 Because, Your Honours --
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zecevic, is that after you have seen the
10 witness? Is that the moment you say you can realistically estimate the
12 MR. ZECEVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. If that witness is willing to
13 speak to the Defence team.
14 Allow me just to provide a complete explanation. A certain
15 number of months in advance, we state our estimates of the duration of
16 our cross-examination. You must understand, Your Honours, that most
17 witnesses are viva voce witnesses. To us, that means that the number of
18 hours intended to be consumed by the Prosecution in the
19 examination-in-chief directly affects the estimate of our
20 cross-examination. It happens and quite naturally to my mind that the
21 Prosecution says, Yes, we did want -- or intended to question the witness
22 for four hours but now we will take only two hours after all, and that
23 certainly effects our estimate of the duration of our cross-examination.
24 Likewise, there have been cases when the Trial Chamber imposed
25 restrictions on the OTP regarding an examination-in-chief of a certain
2 To my mind, it is essential that the rationale determined at the
3 very beginning of the trial with regard to the overall time of the
4 cross-examination or the examination-in-chief respectively will not be
5 infringed upon and it will not until the end of the trial.
6 On Thursday, we will receive a list of witnesses for the
7 following week. That is the moment which three or four witnesses will be
8 here in that week. And it is only then that we can sit down and analyse
9 over the weekend who these witnesses are and what they are expected to
10 say, irrespective of our preparatory work with regard to those witnesses.
11 Because in the meantime, there have been witnesses who testified about
12 some issues that we had intended to ask the witness we had yesterday or
13 the day before about. And then we feel that there is no need for us to
14 repeat the same thing over and over again if some facts have already been
16 That is why it is very difficult for us to give a precise
17 estimate. It's a special situation when we speak to the witness, that
18 is, when we are giving the opportunity to interview him or her, when the
19 witness agrees to speak to us. During that interview, we can establish
20 that the witness has knowledge about some facts that are relevant to this
21 trial, and then, naturally, we try to speak to that witness and try to
22 turn his testimony useful for the Trial Chamber, and it is in this sense
23 that we -- or in this way that we estimate the duration of time needed
24 for our cross-examination.
25 I believe that this suffices as an explanation.
1 As regards our right to interview witnesses, I believe that is
2 not contentious. We have explained several times why it is impossible
3 for us to examine witnesses in their place of residence because the trial
4 is in progress. The only reasonable situation or variant is that we
5 interview the witness here in The Hague, if the witness agrees. That is
6 the cheapest resolution, the most reasonable solution, and the least
7 time-consuming one. It is absolutely reasonable, therefore, to my mind
8 for witnesses to arrive one day in advance, which we have proposed quite
9 some time before this day. Any other variant would be much more
10 expensive and demanding in many ways. That is why we think that the
11 witness should arrive one day in advance, and if he states that he is
12 willing to speak to the Defence, then he should be here a day in advance,
13 in order not to -- not to disturb the proofing by the OTP.
14 As regards the latest submission by Ms. Korner, as regards the
15 six weeks, I must say that it is completely unacceptable. It is
16 physically impossible for us to scrutinise these very comprehensive
17 documentation unless we have six weeks from the date we received the
18 documents. We reached a comprise with the OTP with regard to witness who
19 were coming under Rule 92 bis and we made an offer to reduce that period
20 to four weeks, but that is all we can do.
21 If anything else is unacceptable to us because it is quite
22 impossible for us to scrutinise the entire documentation in less time
23 than six weeks.
24 I hope that I have been able to have been of assistance to the
25 Trial Chamber.
1 Thank you very much.
2 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, just two things which arise from that.
3 The first is the Defence are given a batting order, which is the
4 slightly casual expression for the witnesses, in advance of just the week
5 before, the actual specific witnesses. But they know which witnesses are
6 coming up and at the moment, they know, because effectively, as I say,
7 we're coming to the end of the original list of witnesses, so they know
8 exactly who is coming up.
9 The second matter is this. Your Honour, I've raised this before,
10 and I'm simply mentioning now, as Mr. Zecevic brought it up, we've said
11 over and over again we object to this business of the Defence seeing the
12 witness just before they testify. Your Honours effectively made it clear
13 that we should carry on with this. We still object to it, and I want it
14 firmly, as it were, in the open, because of the way that the proofing is
15 conducted, and I'm afraid that we are unhappy with it. We're unhappy
16 that if -- unless witnesses specifically say that they want the OTP
17 present, if they say they don't mind if the OTP is present, that the --
18 the Defence are objecting to the OTP being there, and this is raising
19 problems all round. But that's an ancillary issue, but it's one of the
20 ways, of course, that we could cut down on the wasting of time. I mean,
21 there is no question about it. If we go back to what we originally said,
22 which was the Defence must see these witnesses in advance.
23 So there's that.
24 Your Honour, it's a matter for Your Honours. As I say, the only
25 way we can really fill in now is if we start to bring up the new
1 witnesses to testify about the adjudicated facts. Otherwise we're left
2 in the same position, that we -- we may well have gaps if the
3 cross-examination estimates are wrong.
4 [Trial Chamber confers]
5 JUDGE HALL
6 an application, for an order that the time for the Defence -- sorry. The
7 time between the notice and the calling of the witness be abridged from
8 the six weeks, that's something that we will discuss and revert to the
9 parties at the next sitting.
10 There are two observations that I would make before we rise. One
11 is that the proposal, as I understand it, or it may be as high an
12 intension which Ms. Korner has stated about back-filling, to use her
13 word, in terms of having the witnesses here, the -- that may be a
14 solution. It is not something that I think the Chamber could or should
15 order at this stage because the -- as would have been obvious from what
16 would have been said in court yesterday, in addition to the -- whereas,
17 the Chamber is bound to take into consideration the primary consideration
18 of VWS, in terms of expense, the Chamber has an additional duty as Judges
19 to ensure that it doesn't impose requirements that cause unnecessary
20 distress to witnesses who are already under pressure by having to travel
21 to The Hague
22 form of stress than that which witnesses always experience, and that is
23 something that we will always have to bear in mind.
24 The final observation relates to Ms. Korner's opening statement
25 about the time not spent in court being used for other purposes. Of
1 course, the Chamber is appreciative of the anxiety which parties would
2 have that such motions as are outstanding are dealt with and expedited
3 and finally disposed of as soon as possible. But, of course, the concern
4 that we expressed about time lost in court is in the context of the --
5 what is well known to practitioners, although non-practitioners often
6 miss the point, that a court, any court, is involved with work while
7 sitting but that the bulk of its work done while it is not sitting, and
8 the Chamber is keenly aware of the responsibility it has to deal with
9 those motions in its non-sitting time, but it was its sitting time that
10 the concern was expressed about, in terms of the time lost. Because that
11 time is irrecoverable, and that is the context.
12 So the -- we would rise now and as I said, the next -- when we
13 resume we would attempt to respond to -- yes, Ms. Korner.
14 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, there are a couple of other short
15 matters that I'd like to deal with.
16 First, can I repeat my request so that it is quite clear that if
17 the Defence, in their objections to the exhumation evidence, wish to rely
18 on any authority from this Tribunal or from national jurisdictions, they
19 should let us know 24-hours in advance. We will do the same.
20 Second matter is this, and that's really to do with the site
21 visit which is not far away now, and can I just raise this for
22 Your Honours to consider. We were all wondering if it would assist if we
23 were to provide in advance of the site visit, a booklet which will have a
24 photograph for each of Your Honours of the particular site that you're
25 going to see and with a page for any notes that you -- you want to make.
1 Because, if so, we can organise that.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you, Ms. Korner.
4 We -- we gratefully accept the Prosecution's offer to have these
5 booklets, and from previous experiences with site visits we know that
6 they are extremely useful.
7 Would it be possible not only to include photographs of the crime
8 sites that we are going to visit, but also to have the relevant excerpts
9 from the testimonies of the witnesses that relate to these crime sites?
10 So that we are able to consult on the spot what the witnesses actually
11 said and then be guided also by the photographs.
12 I know that it has been done in previous site visits where it was
13 considered to be of great assistance, but I'm also aware of the fact that
14 it is an extra burden on the Prosecution to identify those places and to
15 have them included in the log-books but it would be useful if could you
16 have that.
17 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, can I say this. That I will say yes
18 we can do it, subject to being told firmly, no, we can't or that we will
19 have a problem with that. But I will say yes, for the time being,
20 Your Honours, and hope that that works.
21 JUDGE HARHOFF: And also the relevant maps that need to go with
23 MS. KORNER: Right. If Your Honours -- Your Honours were given,
24 I think, a booklet of -- of the Croatian ethnic-type maps which I think
25 will cover nearly everything that -- that -- that you're going to see.
1 We noticed that Your Honours had added Renovica to the itinerary.
2 Can we just point out that it appeared that Your Honours thought that it
3 was part of Pale town. It is actually not. It is something like 30
4 kilometres away. But just so Your Honours -- because it Renovica/Pale
5 town. So ...
6 And, Your Honours, I'm sorry. There was one final matter. There
7 was one other video that we've asked for leave to add. The witness who
8 is going to deal with that is due to testify in a fortnight's time. The
9 motion was filed -- so if Your Honours are considering the video which we
10 would like for the witness either on Friday or Monday, there's also the
11 other video filed on ...
12 [Prosecution counsel confer]
13 MS. KORNER: Yes, Your Honours, can I say we filed a motion, I'm
14 trying to remember the date. The Defence has responded. We were going
15 to apply for leave to respond to their response today, but just to point
16 out a couple of matters.
17 But, in any event, if Your Honours feel you have got enough
18 information about that, that's fine.
19 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
20 JUDGE HALL
21 touched at the beginning, the two motions filed -- thank you, Ms. Korner.
22 This is really for the Defence.
23 The two motions filed yesterday, could we have a response by end
24 of business Thursday? Thank you.
25 MR. ZECEVIC: Yes. Thank you.
1 JUDGE HALL
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: My question before the break, Mr. Zecevic, about
3 the exhumation discussion, are you able in a position to tell us whether
4 it could happen Thursday, if time permits?
5 MR. ZECEVIC: Can I -- can I inform the Trial Chamber in the
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. Okay.
8 MR. ZECEVIC: Thank you very much.
9 JUDGE HALL
10 not sure which courtroom - but we will all be alerted at some point.
11 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 11.34 a.m.
12 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 25th day of
13 August, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.