1 Thursday, 7 October 2010
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning
7 everybody in and around the courtroom. This is case IT-08-91-T, the
8 Prosecutor versus Mico Stanisic and Stojan Zupljanin.
9 JUDGE HALL: Thank you, Mr. Registrar. Good morning to everyone.
10 May we have the appearances, please.
11 MR. DI FAZIO: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning
12 colleagues from the Defence. Gramsci Di Fazio, Thomas Hannis, and
13 Selma Sakic, together with our Case Manager Crispian Smith for the
15 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
16 Appearing for Mico Stanisic today, Slobodan Cvijetic, Ms. Tatjana Savic,
17 and Deirdre Montgomery.
18 MR. KRGOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Dragan Krgovic and
19 Aleksandar Aleksic appearing for Zupljanin Defence.
20 JUDGE HALL: Thank you.
21 Mr. Aleksic, if you are ready to continue your cross-examination.
22 Witness, I remind you you're still on your oath.
23 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
24 THE WITNESS: EWA TABEAU [Resumed]
25 Cross-examination by Mr. Aleksic: [Continued]
1 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Ms. Tabeau.
2 A. Good morning.
3 Q. We left off yesterday with your explanation of the statistical
4 definition of the term "displaced persons." You also said that it is
5 distinct from the legal definition, and we have finished with that.
6 Could we look at your report for this case, which is an addendum
7 to the Milosevic report, addendum 2M, which is page 38 in both versions.
8 65 ter 10399. Page 38.
9 Dr. Tabeau, here in the first column you show the total
10 population identified in 1997, and that's 439.601; correct?
11 A. 49.019. That is -- oh, yeah, sorry. You are looking at page 37,
12 not 38; right? 37.
13 Q. Correct. Correct. My mistake. So the total population is
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Those are all those who registered to vote in the
17 18 municipalities of the indictment, and everyone originating from these
18 municipalities who registered to vote in a different municipality; right?
19 A. In a different or the same, yes, mm-hmm.
20 Q. Very well. In column 2, you give us the number of the total
21 identified internally displaced persons and refugees, and that is
23 A. Yes, correct.
24 Q. And if I understood your evidence yesterday, you considered as
25 refugees or internally displaced persons all those voters who in 1991
1 lived in one of the municipalities in this indictment but did not
2 register to vote in 1997 in their own municipality but registered to vote
3 in a different municipality or registered to vote from abroad.
4 A. Correct.
5 Q. Now, would you agree that if for 1997 you identified this total
6 number of voters, 439.601 minus 192.881 internally displaced persons and
7 refugees, then the difference between these two numbers would give us
8 people who were not displaced.
9 A. Correct.
10 Q. And perhaps my maths and statistics would be better today. I
11 would say the difference between these two numbers would be 246.720, if
12 you will take my word for it.
13 A. Something like that.
14 Q. Now, would you agree with this: If the difference between the
15 total voters and total IDPs and refugees is 246.720, then you should have
16 taken that number as the ethnic composition in 1997 and compared it with
17 the census of 1991.
18 A. I disagree, sir. Why? I will explain you. Because this number
19 does not include incomers. The whole point of the change in the ethnic
20 composition, yes, that a number of population moved out. Another number
21 moved in. So this was what we discussed yesterday, that parallel to
22 moving out of non-Serbs from these municipalities there was an inflow of
23 the Serb population into these areas. So looking at the ethnic
24 composition of the nondisplaced persons identified among the voters is
25 biased because it doesn't take into account those new persons who moved
1 into these areas from other municipalities.
2 Q. Thank you. And then as far as this first report is concerned,
3 its tables and statistics, et cetera, I have just one more question. If
4 you have two statistical groups, one of which consists only of permanent
5 residents, and that is the population according to the 1991 census, and
6 the second group consists of permanent residents from 1991 plus incomers
7 from 1992 through 1997, would you agree with a me that these two groups
8 are not methodologically comparable?
9 A. I think they are perfectly comparable if you think of a non-war
10 situation, peacetime, right, and we have two censuses, say in 1981 and
11 1991. Between the two censuses population, of course, changes. Why it
12 changes? Because there are new births, because people die, because there
13 is a migration. There is emigration, there is immigration. So that is a
14 dynamic process. Does it prevent us from comparing the ethnic
15 composition of population of 1991 with that of 1991 [sic], not at all.
16 Not at all. And the concept of moving certain ethnic groups from certain
17 territories and replacing ethnic -- the same -- these ethnic groups with
18 other groups actually is -- has some history in the former Yugoslavia.
19 So I think that we have to take into account the incomers as well,
20 because that's the whole point. That's the whole point of the change,
21 that some people must go and some others must come and replace them, and
22 that is what we have showed in this report.
23 Q. All right. Regarding your first report and the addendum made for
24 this case, although this section is identical in both, yesterday my
25 learned friend Mr. Di Fazio mentioned the personal number and said he
1 wouldn't discuss it, and then on page 15420 of the transcript, you
2 explained why you had to compare these changes of names and last names
3 and the whole procedure that took you to the final result. And all this
4 was in the context of the fact that unlike in Western countries that
5 would not have been necessary, because every person has their own ID
6 number which features on a variety of documents, and you said it was not
7 the case in the former Yugoslavia where citizens started to receive their
8 ID numbers in the early 1980s, and these numbers were used only in the
9 1991 census and in just a few other sources. That is approximately what
10 you said. It's not a quote, but the substance is correct, isn't it?
11 A. Yes, it is.
12 Q. Could you explain to us and the Trial Chamber what a unique
13 personal ID number of the citizen is?
14 A. In the former Yugoslavia, this number has 13 digits. Seven first
15 digits is the date of birth. The next two digits is the code for the
16 region of birth, and the next three digits is a sequential number,
17 different for men and women, and the last digit is a control digit. It's
18 calculated according to a certain algorithm and show the correctness of
19 the entire number. That's the concept.
20 Q. I agree with you, but if I may add. These last three numbers but
21 one, you said that they were different from -- for men and women. I
22 would like to add that these were numbers born -- for people born on the
23 same day, and for men it was from 000 until 499, and for women it was
24 from 500 to 999; correct?
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. Can you tell us -- let me put it this way: Would you agree with
2 me that the law introducing the unique personal number, the federal law
3 that applied in the whole of the former Yugoslavia, was passed in 1976
4 and started to be implemented immediately?
5 A. Yes, possibly. I don't know exactly the year, but it sounds
6 reasonable what you said.
7 Q. And under that law, infants born from that year on received a
8 number according to their place of birth, whereas the law also said that
9 people born before that day would receive ID numbers according to their
10 place of residence.
11 A. That's correct.
12 Q. Would it be fair to say -- and under that law, of course it was
13 logical that each citizen had to have an ID number. Now, would you agree
14 with me that this personal ID number, which is called by the acronym
15 JMBG, is to be found in a large number of identity papers, and it follows
16 all the major events in a person's life, birth, marriage, issuance of a
17 health care card, even student's card at university?
18 A. Yes, of course. That's the concept of the number.
19 Q. I absolutely agree with you, but you said that it started only in
20 the early 1980s in the former Bosnia. But if the law was passed in 1976,
21 all of the citizens by 1991 had received that number. It was, after all,
22 a functioning state, wasn't it?
23 A. A large number of citizens did have this number, of course, by
25 Q. And in 1991, there were also elections in Bosnia, the first
1 democratic elections. Are you aware of that?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Did you have access to those electoral lists, those voters
4 registers from 1991 where every voters' unique identity number would be
6 A. I didn't need to. I had the census of 1991. Why would I look
7 for the voters register?
8 Q. For example, because you said that you had difficulties in making
9 your report to find in this 1997 OSC list and in the 1991 census those ID
10 numbers, that they were missing some places, that there were mistakes
11 made. Wouldn't it have been easier to match ID numbers in the two lists
12 rather than trace the names, father's name and other?
13 A. I want to clarify. I never said I didn't find this number in the
14 census and in the voters list. That is one thing.
15 Second, I was discussing yesterday that JMBG is unavailable from
16 most sources on war deaths. And that is absolutely correct. This is
17 what I stand behind also today. I didn't ever mention that it was -- the
18 voters register, that it did not include the JMBG. On the contrary.
19 Voters register did contain the JMBG. I said yesterday that the voters
20 register of 1997-8, as a matter of fact, was based on the 1991 census.
21 Further, as a matter of fact, the voters to be eligible to vote, it was
22 necessary to fulfil two conditions. One was to be registered in the
23 population census of 1991. And second condition, it was the age.
24 Further, as a matter of fact, we did use the JMBG number in the
25 matching of the records from the census with the records from the voters.
1 We were lucky to have the JMBG in these two sources because these two
2 sources by far are the largest sources we used in our analysis. Without
3 having this number, disregarding how deficient it was, it would be
4 extremely difficult to match these two sources, as a matter of fact,
5 because the voters was a sub-file from the census files. The JMBG
6 actually contained the same deficiencies in the both, in the census and
7 in the voters. So disregarding the deficiencies, it was still possible
8 to use this number and in matching.
9 About 2 million records were matched based on the JMBG only or in
10 addition with information about the names and about the date of birth.
11 So what I said yesterday was we didn't have the choice. We had to look
12 at names in the census because in many sources on that, the JMBG was
13 unavailable. So that was the alternative way of doing matching. But as
14 a matter of fact we did both, matching based on the JMBG and matching
15 based on the names and other personal information.
16 Q. Very well. If I understood you correctly, 2 million were matched
17 based on the ID number and the rest were matched by some other criteria
18 that we will discuss later.
19 A. The 2 million were matched on JMBG plus additional information.
20 So it would be too risky to use exclusively JMBGs. Why? Because, for
21 instance, in the voters register, wives were often registered using the
22 JMBG of the husbands. So on one hand, a majority of JMBGs were linked
23 correctly to the same person, but there were exceptions that -- like with
24 the wives, so we had to look at other criteria including names. JMBG was
25 the crucial element of matching of the census records with the voters
2 I also received additional information from OSCE at some point
3 about how they made the lists of eligible voters, and obviously they used
4 the census records for this, including the JMBG, the names, date of
5 birth, address of residence, so all this information that is necessary to
6 validate when a person comes and wants to register to vote. So they had
7 their own records of the eligible voters from the census. The voters
8 were coming, presenting their own IDs, and this information was compared
9 with what that electoral commissions had at the time of registration.
10 That is basically the census data we're talking about when it comes to
11 the voters.
12 Q. Now, if I may pick up on that. In addition to the JMBG, can you
13 tell us how many other criteria did you use in matching various lists
14 with the 1991 census, because to quote from your report, you talk about
15 the difficulties in matching in the absence of the ID number. Names are
16 either differently spelled or a slightly different date of birth is
17 recorded. Therefore, for persons who were not at first matched, we
18 expanded the search by including one or more variables, let's say just
19 the year of birth or one or more initials in addition to the name and
21 Now, how many additional criteria was that, two, three, six?
22 A. Oh, sir, I can't remember how many. The -- the list of criteria
23 can be very, very long. But I think it is good to point out that the
24 matching process is a multi-step [Realtime transcript read in error
25 "multistate"] process. In every step a criterion is used to identify
1 potential candidate matches. If the criterion is broad, for instance, if
2 I'm using full first name, full father's name, full surname, full date
3 birth -- date of birth, well, it is quite a narrow criterion. And if I
4 obtain a hundred of matches that are identical on first name, father's
5 name, date of birth and perhaps in addition place of birth or place of
6 residence, it is actually quite a good result and I can declare these
7 matches. All candidate matches can be taken as true matches.
8 However, as you pointed out, there are mistakes, spelling
9 mistakes, in the names, or other mistakes in the dates of birth. So in
10 order to compensate for these mistakes, we have to use broader criteria.
11 For instance, we can use full surname, but only initials of the first
12 name and father's name, and instead of the complete date of birth, only
13 year of birth. And again, in this step there will be a number of
14 candidate matches, but because the criterion was broad, there is no
15 certainty that all the candidate matches are the true matches.
16 So these candidate matches need to be inspected visually. So one
17 has to go one by one through all these candidate matches and decide in
18 every case is this the true match or is it a false match. True match
19 will be a match in which there will be a difference in the spelling in
20 the first name and in the father's name, and there might be a little
21 difference in the date of birth, in the month of birth and the date of
22 birth, because people don't remember dates and the reports will be
23 different in different sources. But if there is satisfactory degree of
24 similarity between two records, then this match can be declared as true.
25 But there will be a number of matches, most certainly, that will have to
1 be rejected as false matches, because the differences will be too large
2 to be accepted.
3 So a number of these broad criteria, of course, had to be used
4 because of the differences in spelling; right? And at the date of birth.
5 Well, actually, it wasn't so much the case between the census and the
6 voters. It was much more the case in matching between the census and the
7 sources on deaths or missing persons; right? So -- but at the same time,
8 the numbers of records of the victims are much smaller, so visual
9 inspection, going through all these candidate matches is physically
10 possible. It would be extremely hard if -- if this would have to be done
11 in the context of the census and voters. However, fortunately in this
12 case the JMBG had been extremely helpful in matching.
13 So I can't say the number, exact number of criteria, but much
14 more than three or two or six.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Excuse me. A correction to the transcript,
16 please. Page 9, line 18. It said "multistate." "The matching process
17 is a multistate process." The witness said "multistep process." Thank
19 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. You said there were several criteria for matching. Why is there
21 no matching statistics in the report? Perhaps I can clarify. Since you
22 used several criteria, why did you not show that, say, for the first
23 criterion there were 20 per cent of matches. The next achieved
24 30 per cent of matching, et cetera, et cetera. Could you explain that?
25 A. Oh, yes. Yes, I -- I could have done this, honestly, but,
1 well -- first of all, we give some matching statistics in terms of the
2 final matching rate. Because of the number of steps taken during the
3 matching, it would be very time-consuming and, yeah, I'm wondering
4 whether it would be physical -- physically feasible to register every
5 single step we have taken when matching records. Actually, we have been
6 matching records for years and years long, and in order to -- to come up
7 with statistics for the Milosevic report it took us five years to
8 complete the matching and the calculation of the statistics. So it could
9 be done, but it is a very time-consuming process for which I did not
10 always have enough resources. Human resources I am meaning.
11 Q. We have practically moved to your second report about those who
12 went missing. Yesterday we looked at table 2, which is page 10 in both
13 versions, which is 65 ter 10400. Yes. Page 10, 65 ter 10400. I
14 apologise. It must be the 11th page, then. Yes. No, sorry. It was the
15 10th page.
16 In any case, we need a simple piece of information. You found
17 that there was a total of 12.047 people who were either killed or went
18 missing. Could you have split the category of those who passed away from
19 those who went missing in the report?
20 A. Yes. Yes, I -- I can do this. So if you need these statistics,
21 I can prepare them. I think that this is mainly killed people, but in
22 any case, I can do this.
23 Q. In order to prove that -- well, you have certain death records.
24 I do not dispute that. In order to prove that the people on those lists
25 were real people, and in order to ascertain their ethnicity, you used
1 those records to match them against the 1991 census; is that correct?
2 A. It's correct.
3 Q. And under such matching criteria, you arrived at the number of
4 10.430 matches; correct?
5 A. Correct.
6 Q. Will you agree with me that the difference between the people you
7 believed were the victims, which is 12.047, and the result of your
8 findings of those who appeared in the census, which is 10.430, when we
9 subtract these two numbers the remaining number is --
10 THE INTERPRETER: Could Mr. Aleksic please repeat. The
11 interpreter didn't pick up the number.
12 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Aleksic, you heard the interpreters maybe.
13 They did not pick up the last number that you referred to. So could you
14 please repeat it. Thank you.
15 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Apologies. I wasn't paying
16 attention to the transcript.
17 Q. So the difference between 12.047 and 10.430 is 1.617.
18 A. Correct.
19 Q. Can you explain this to me, please? Those people do not appear
20 on the census, and yet you took them into account. If I understood well,
21 it turns out that after having analysed a number of the victims, you also
22 included those who were in the census as well as those who were not, or
23 perhaps I'm wrong.
24 A. Yes, I included everybody, the whole 12.047 victims. And if I
25 would exclude the unmatched records, that would mean that I assume that
1 these persons are fictitious victims, and I had no reasons to make such
2 assumption. The matching rate was never 100 per cent between our
3 sources, because the sources are deficient in various ways. So if we
4 obtain a matching rate of 80 per cent, 90 per cent of a given source with
5 the census records, it is already a greater matching rate.
6 All sources that we used for the integrated mortality database
7 are sources that cover victims of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and
8 we know this because we know what kind of sources were those sources.
9 Q. Very well. But when you analysed the ethnic make-up and forcible
10 migration, you only took into account those whom you found in the census,
11 excluding everyone else whom you failed to identify.
12 A. But, sir, because I identified in the census as much as
13 90 per cent of the victims from the integrated database, this simply
14 means that I may use certain statistical techniques, I'm again referring
15 to the extrapolation based on what I know for the 90 per cent of the
16 matched individuals over the remaining 10 per cent, I may do that. This
17 is what the statistics tell us. This is a procedure that is fully
18 justified. So what I did, for the 90 per cent I had a complete
19 information from the census about the ethnic make-up. So knowing this,
20 the rest -- the remaining 10 per cent was redistributed according to the
21 observed ethnic composition for the matched records. And believe me,
22 sir, it isn't a mistake. It is a common statistical procedure to do
23 these kind of things.
24 MR. ALEKSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have no further
25 questions of this witness. I truly prepared ahead of time for this
1 conversation, but obviously we'll have to bring an expert of our own who
2 will be able to delve into more detail in order to have it explained to
3 the Trial Chamber.
4 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
5 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] May I, Your Honour?
6 JUDGE HALL: Yes, please, Mr. Cvijetic.
7 Cross-examination by Mr. Cvijetic:
8 Q. [Interpretation] Ms. Tabeau, good morning. My name is
9 Slobodan Cvijetic. I'm counsel for Mr. Mico Stanisic.
10 A. Good morning.
11 Q. On behalf of the legal profession, I'm afraid I'll have to
12 correct something my learned friend Mr. Aleksic said yesterday when he
13 said that lawyers, and especially attorneys, are poor at math and that
14 was the reason why they decided to study law since this only partially
15 stands. Namely, attorneys are quick to pick up on a single field or area
16 of math. They say that they can add or -- or do sums very well, but
17 division is another matter.
18 It was an attempt at humour.
19 At the outset I wanted to ask you this: Are you familiar with a
20 demographic or statistical maxim which states that the figure indicates
21 precisely what the person toying around with it intended to show?
22 A. Well, I'm unfamiliar with this maxim, so I -- and when I make
23 statistics, I make statistics as they should be made, methodologically
24 correct and based on good sources.
25 Q. Well, it is my position that the maxim stands in full. If in a
1 certain area scientific research is based solely upon numbers, math, and
2 statistics, without taking into account a number of other relevant
3 criteria, especially in the area we are dealing with, one may arrive at
4 seemingly valid results which, however, do not offer an appropriate
5 explanation unless further analysis is undertaken.
6 I'll try to sum up or summarise your work. In the Milosevic
7 case, it was your task to process 40 municipalities included in that
9 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: 47.
10 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Is that correct? It should be 47 in the transcript. Am I
13 A. Forty-seven, yes.
14 Q. In that case, in keeping with the task you were assigned, you
15 studied seven municipalities in detail and provided an explanation that
16 in those seven municipalities, the issue of demographic changes was the
17 most pronounced and the most characteristic. Am I correct?
18 A. Yes. Possibly, yes.
19 Q. Those seven municipalities can also be found in your addendum you
20 created for the Stanisic and Zupljanin case; is that correct?
21 A. Yes, it's possible. I don't remember exactly which seven were
22 taken in the Milosevic for a more detailed study.
23 Q. For the purposes of this case, you dealt with 18 municipalities
24 included in the Stanisic and Zupljanin indictment; is that correct?
25 A. Yes, it's correct.
1 Q. In the Milosevic case, you also included 26 municipalities which
2 are found in the Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina, in other words,
3 outside the territory of Republika Srpska; is that correct?
4 A. Yes, it's -- it's possible. I don't remember all the
5 municipalities, but if you say so, I guess you checked.
6 Q. Yes, I have. You will agree with me, will you not, that
7 statistical data and demographic conclusions drawn based on demographic
8 changes in population movements grow in quality with the increasing
9 number of municipalities?
10 A. Why would it be?
11 Q. Because statistics and demographic changes need not be aimed at
12 ascertaining the total situation in the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina in
13 order to have a realistic view of the demographic changes inside Bosnia
14 and Herzegovina, would not have been the correct -- would it not have
15 been the correct approach?
16 A. Sir, I was tasked to make a report that would give statistics in
17 both cases, Milosevic and in this case, that would give statistics that
18 would be fully consistent with the indictment area and indictment
19 time-frame. Indictment area in Milosevic was larger than in this case.
20 In this cases it is 18 municipalities. In the other it was 47. But if
21 you are interested in statistics for the entire country, I do have them.
22 There is no issue. You can have them tomorrow.
23 So it is, sir, not so that the larger area the quality of
24 statistics -- the better the quality of statistics. Even for one single
25 municipality, take Srebrenica, for instance, or Prijedor, the number of
1 the population is so large that most certainly the quality of statistics
2 for a large area like that is -- is fine. It is -- the -- the -- of --
3 of -- of the data or your sample you're working with matters if it's --
4 if you work with small samples, but we were not working with small
5 samples. We are working with the census population, voters register.
6 These are huge populations. And the area study -- studied in both
7 reports was defined according to the requirements of each of these cases
8 and has nothing to do with the quality of statistics. In both case the
9 quality was good.
10 Q. I don't think you have answered my question. The problem is in
11 the sample chosen. In the Milosevic case you chose seven municipalities
12 for which you claim were the most affected in terms of demographic
13 changes and ethnic make-up. In that case as well, you also cited a
14 similar explanation you have used just now by saying that you were tasked
15 to do that by the OTP. However, this is not something that you can
16 justify by scientific reasoning, because you participated in that
17 research, and you chose those seven municipalities. Is it not correct?
18 A. Sir, first of all, in the Milosevic report, there are a lot of
19 statistics for the entire country, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and there is a
20 lot of comparisons in the Milosevic report of the 47 municipalities or
21 7 municipalities with the statistics for Bosnia and Herzegovina and with
22 every entity, political entity, that is the RS and FBiH. So there is a
23 lot of broader statistics that create a context in which -- within which
24 the statistics for 47 or 7 can be seen.
25 So these -- this -- blaming me that I made biased choices is not
1 justified in this case. Also, in this report I included some statistics
2 for Bosnia and Herzegovina to give some context for the statistics for
3 this case.
4 Q. Ms. Tabeau, that wider context was not entered in full in this
5 addendum to the report, and -- and it was thrown out yesterday in
6 relation to the Milosevic case, and we simply lack the information
7 necessary to paint that wider context. I will explain further when we
8 get to that topic specifically.
9 What type of demographics do you deal with? What is your
10 speciality, so to speak?
11 A. Before I answer this question, please, sir, I would like to draw
12 your attention to Annex B2 of the addendum. The title of this annex is
13 "Comparison of the Stanisic and Zupljanin Case Area with Bosnia and
14 Herzegovina." Here you can find the contextual statistics for Bosnia in
15 this section.
16 Now, going back to the field of demographics I deal with, I deal
17 with general demography, I think, and in particular I was specialised
18 years long in the study of mortality in developed countries, mostly
19 countries of Western Europe, Central Europe, some East European
20 countries, and I studied life expectancy. So it is mortality, generally
22 Now, the experience from the ten last years from this Tribunal it
23 would be most certainly war demography. This is a new area in demography
24 which is quite different from classical demography of Western countries
25 or classical demography of another type. But that would be the two
1 areas, the study of mortality in developed countries on one hand, and in
2 addition to this, demography of war.
3 I think there's a correction needed in the transcript last line.
4 It was demography of war I said in the end. This is page 19, row 14.
5 Demography of war. Thank you.
6 Q. And you have worked on war demographics ever since your
7 collaboration with the OTP began. Sorry, I apologise. You deal with war
8 mortality issues since you began working with the OTP.
9 A. Not only war mortality. If you look at what I have done here in
10 this Tribunal, there is a study of population displacement, internal and
11 external, a lot of reports on that. There would be these two subjects.
12 War mortality and forced migration I would call it, internal and
14 Q. You did not deal with census statistics and the only experience
15 you have in that area is from your days as a student. Would that be
17 A. Well, if you are referring to my participation in a population
18 census in Poland when I was a student, yes, this was the experience I had
19 at that time, and further, I started using individual-level data from the
20 census here in this Tribunal.
21 Q. Have you published any papers in census statistics?
22 A. I mean, what kind of paper, technical paper? Definitely not. I
23 did not publish any technical papers on the census. I did publish a
24 paper which was discussing the results of a study in which census data
25 was used. I did publish such papers. But is it for you a publication in
1 the census area? I wouldn't know that. I don't know exactly what you
2 mean. Well, I never pretended to be a technical expert in the conduct of
3 census, and I'm just a census -- a user of the census data, which is not
4 unusual for a statistician. You really don't have to have the technical
5 knowledge of -- of the conduct of census in order to be able to use the
6 census data.
7 MR. DI FAZIO: Your Honours, please, there's a mistake in line
8 14. It should be conduct, not construct.
9 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
10 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Furthermore, you did not use data from the so-called vital
12 statistics, births, marriages, et cetera.
13 A. Most certainly I did use a lot of vital statistics. I -- I am
14 specialised in the study of mortality, which is exclusively based on
15 vital statistics. Death notification records used for compilation of
16 mortality rates, other measures of mortality all come from vital
17 statistics. It is the official death notifications. Unfortunately, in
18 demography, there is little we can do without vital statistics, birth
19 registration, death registration, marriages registration, divorces. It
20 all comes from vital statistics. Only migration is registered in special
21 registers or there are surveys inspecting the migration flows. But the
22 rest, it is all vital statistics, so I do have quite some experience with
23 vital statistics.
24 Q. Well, then you did that after the Milosevic case, because you
25 said there you did not deal at all in that area of statistics, vital
2 A. I think we again miss a context here. Well, if you ask me
3 whether I do have experience in technical aspects of collecting
4 information or records of vital -- for vital statistics or the census, my
5 experience is none. I have never worked in an office registering vital
6 events. I've never worked in the statistical office in which I would be
7 processing the census data. So this is a different group of people who
8 do that.
9 So collecting data, processing data, preparing data for -- for
10 the user is one thing, and I do not have this kind of experience because
11 I'm not this kind of technical person. But using the data with the
12 understanding and knowledge of what is the process of data collection,
13 this is me. I am the user. I am the user, and I have 30 years of
14 experience in using demographic sources. So I think I would strongly
15 disagree with you that I miss the necessary knowledge of vital
16 statistical sources, other demographic sources. I'm most definitely well
17 equipped to be an experienced use of these sources.
18 Q. Have you every worked in the field of ethnodemography? And if
19 you would kindly explain to the Trial Chamber exactly what that means.
20 A. I am afraid that ethnodemography is a typically Yugoslav concept.
21 So we don't have in demography ethnodemography as such. We have studies
22 of ethnicity, of ethnic groups, in demography, but ethnodemography, this
23 term only exists in the former Yugoslavia. As anything in demography of
24 the former Yugoslavia has always been around the ethnic composition of
25 the population and growth of the ethnic group, the differences in
1 fertility of the ethnic groups, so that's the ethnodemography. And this
2 is not how we do things in demography. I'm sorry to say this.
3 Ethnicity is just one of many dimensions the population have --
4 the populations have. Ethnicity -- we can study populations by
5 ethnicity. We can even make projections, population projections to see
6 how the ethnic groups develop in population, but we do the same things
7 with socio-economic status because the differences by socio-economic
8 status are extremely important. And in mortality analysis,
9 socio-economic differences in mortality and life expectancy is an
10 important aspects of the populations.
11 We -- we do use several other dimensions of the population in our
12 studies, but when we speak of demography, we rather speak of demography
13 of Western countries versus demography of developing countries because
14 these two groups of countries are not identical when it comes to sources
15 of information about the population. If you compare a country like
16 Holland with a country in Africa, take Sudan, for instance, and if you
17 think how much information is available here in Holland about the
18 population, any aspect of the population, and for the population of
19 Sudan, so these are two [indiscernible]. So obviously there must be
20 different methods, approaches and sources used in the study of these two
21 different populations. But ethnodemography, we don't do that.
22 Q. Well, you see, Ms. Tabeau, I see a problem there. You came to a
23 region where this ethnodemographic factor or, in other words, study of
24 demography by ethnic group is a very important thing, and you neglected
25 it. You did not deal with it, and you did not apply it to the region
1 where you were working. And I will use practical examples to show you
2 how this reflected on your findings.
3 Let me start with some basic characteristics of ethnic groups in
4 Bosnia-Herzegovina to see if you know at least these basic
5 characteristics of ethnic groups in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
6 Do you know that the Muslim population as an ethnic group is
7 characterised by low mobility in terms of emigration and immigration,
8 high density of population of their areas, the areas where they reside,
9 and a high birth rate, actually higher than any other ethnic group in
10 Bosnia-Herzegovina. Are you aware of these basic features?
11 A. These are your theories, Mr. Cvijetic, and as a matter of fact,
12 we should be talking about my report and the results presented in my
13 reports, and you are supposed to challenge me if I made any omissions or
14 things like that, and you are discussing me -- with me your theories. So
15 I would suggest we move to the actual topic of this conversation.
16 Q. Would you just reply. Do you know these basic features or not?
17 A. I made a study of fertility of ethnic groups in Bosnia and
18 Herzegovina. Never published, unfortunately, and perhaps I shouldn't
19 even be talking about this because it's my internal product which I
20 didn't share with anybody. But in the census, there is an information
21 about children ever born for every women -- woman. And it's possible to
22 study differences in fertility of ethnic groups. One can do it in many
23 ways. In demography we have two major perspectives. We have a
24 cross-sectional perspective, so we look at fertility in one period of
25 time, or we study fertility in cohort, that is longitudinally. This
1 means that we study number of children born by every women in their
2 reproductive age.
3 Q. Let me just stop you there. That is just one aspect of ethnic
4 characteristics. I didn't mean to deal with each one individually until
5 I come to the practical examples showing how that reflected on your
7 If I understood your reply, the reply is no. No, you did not
8 deal with it, and you do not know these basic ethnic characteristics.
9 MR. DI FAZIO: I object to the question, if Your Honours please.
10 Although Ms. Tabeau's quite capable of dealing with these questions I
11 must nevertheless object, because it's what exactly is Mr. Cvijetic
12 referring to when he says she doesn't know these basic ethnic
13 characteristics? There's nothing, nothing at all in any of the reports
14 that touches upon the issue of ethnicity other than the way people
15 reported themselves by writing down Muslim, Serb, or Croat in the census
16 taken in 1991, and yesterday she gave evidence, and it's in the reports,
17 that was the sole basis of studying any of these numbers. Nothing about
18 any other study that she may have done on what is referred to as "ethnic
20 THE WITNESS: If I may say, well, you said I don't know anything
21 about these issues. I say I am unaware of your theories, and I don't
22 want to be aware of these theories because they are unrelated to the
23 subject of my reports. But it is not correct to assume that I myself
24 haven't studied certain issues like, for instance, fertility or birth
25 rates among the ethnic groups, density of the Muslim population,
1 urban-rural distribution of this population, migration before the 1991
2 census, these kind of things, because you have no basis to blame me of
3 not having any experience in this.
4 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Well if you have that experience, why haven't you still answered
6 my question about the ethnic characteristics of one ethnic group? And I
7 will later put questions about the other two.
8 MR. DI FAZIO: For the record, if Your Honours please, that's
9 going to meet with objection each and every time. The question of ethnic
10 characteristics is utterly irrelevant to any of these studies.
11 JUDGE HALL: I agree, Mr. Di Fazio.
12 Mr. Cvijetic, please move on to another area. It will be
13 pointless going down this road.
14 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, there is a point to
15 this, and you will see it when I give a practical example, because
16 demography is not just maths and statistics. If you just take maths and
17 statistics, discounting all the other democratic factors, you don't get
18 the correct conclusions.
19 Let's take an sample of four residents, four inhabitants, and
20 according to their self-declaration and gender you get two men and two
21 women. One of the two men has both wives. Both the women as wives, and
22 the other one, the other man, does not have a wife. On average, they're
23 both married, but every night, one of them goes to bed alone because he
24 does not have that statistical wife.
25 I will also point to all the other factors that affect
1 demographic movements in population which must be linked to the
2 mathematical and statistical findings. Mathematical statistics are bone
3 dry and do not give us a real picture of the population.
4 Now, counting the percentage of the population under 18, for
5 instance, is different for different ethnic groups, and that reflected on
6 the maths of Mrs. Tabeau. But since the Trial Chamber wants me to move
7 on, I will.
8 Q. How and on what basis did you determine ethnicity, nationality?
9 A. On the basis of the census, 1991, question, open-ended question,
10 "What's your ethnicity?"
11 Q. So you did not use language, religion alongside, and you did not
12 combine these two with the self-declared ethnicity?
13 A. No, I didn't. It was a self-perception of every person in the
14 census as reported in the census.
15 Q. In that census for Bosnia and Herzegovina, 239.845 respondents
16 declared themselves as Yugoslavs. So they have not declared themselves
17 as belonging to any ethnic group, and you placed them in the category of
18 others; right?
19 A. Sir, they did declare themselves as Yugoslavs, not as Serbs,
20 Croats, Muslims, any other ethnicity. They did declare themselves as
21 Yugoslavs. Why Yugoslavs would you assume is no lack of ethnic
22 declaration? Why is that so? Well, I saw, you know, at several
23 occasions that the Serbs would say most of Yugoslavs were the Serbs. The
24 Croats would say, oh, no, no, no. Most of the Yugoslavs were the Croats,
25 and the Muslims, no, no, no, most of them were Muslims. But, as a matter
1 of fact, they did declare themselves as Yugoslavs. It's as good
2 ethnicity as any other. Didn't you think about it?
3 Q. Ma'am, Yugoslav is citizenship. A Serb who declares himself as
4 Yugoslav is still a Serb, but within that --
5 MR. DI FAZIO: I object, Your Honours. The -- we're entering
6 into a discussion about what it is to be a Yugoslav, and that is utterly
7 irrelevant. Ms. Tabeau has made -- repeatedly made it clear that in
8 terms of ethnicity, she only used what the answer was in the 1991 census
9 and never looked into the question of whether -- what aspects or
10 characteristics a person who wrote down Muslim, Croat, Serb, or Yugoslav
11 had in their mind when they wrote that down, that answer. So to enter
12 and go down that road and to discuss that is irrelevant.
13 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Mrs. Tabeau, Yugoslavs are not extraterrestrials. They are
15 Serbs, Croats, Muslims and others who declared themselves as Yugoslavs.
16 Is that not right?
17 A. That is what you say, sir.
18 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic, I thought -- I thought that
19 Mr. Di Fazio's objection so clearly pointed out the direction which you
20 should be headed that I'm surprised that you're persisting in this.
21 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I will explain in just one
22 sentence and stop there. The category of Yugoslavs, precisely because of
23 this lack of ethnic declaration, creates a mathematical error in the
24 make-up of Bosnia and Herzegovina and may not be used, cannot be used.
25 And if it's not used, it gives us a corresponding percentage of error in
1 the statistical data.
2 THE WITNESS: If I may make one comment. In statistical
3 publications of the census data by statistical authorities from the
4 region of the former Yugoslavia, Yugoslavs are distinguished as yet
5 another ethnic group along with the Muslims, Croats, and the Serbs, and
6 the remaining ethnic groups.
7 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I will not repeat what that
8 category consists of. It's already on the record.
9 Your Honours, I think perhaps it's time for the break. I'm about
10 to move to a new area, namely, the sources used by Mrs. Tabeau, and it's
11 quite a large subject.
12 JUDGE HALL: Yes. We return in 20 minutes.
13 --- Recess taken at 10.23 a.m.
14 --- On resuming at 10.52 a.m.
15 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, may I just very briefly
16 raise one matter with you. It's not relating to this witness but,
17 rather, to the schedule for the rest of the -- well, today and tomorrow.
18 Unfortunately, we're not proceeding as fast as I thought we might
19 have this morning, and it looks as if we may be using a goodly part of
20 today, and that's really going to cause problems with the next witness.
21 You already know what the situation is with that witness and his
22 commitments on the weekend and how the Prosecution was very anxious to
23 finish him before the weekend because he has to go back for personal
24 reasons. Accordingly, I'm asked to ask you if it is at all possible to
25 arrange not only the extra sitting today which has already been arranged
1 but an extra sitting tomorrow as well. I understand it may be possible
2 and Ms. Korner is anxious that we try and arrange that at all if at all
3 possible so that we can complete the next witness in time for him to go
4 back to his commitment on the weekend.
5 JUDGE HALL: When did you -- when did -- just --
6 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
7 JUDGE HALL: Could you confirm, Mr. Di Fazio, that the witness
8 has to -- is it tomorrow morning that the witness has to leave?
9 MR. DI FAZIO: No, no. He's got a commitment on the weekend, on
10 Saturday. So the situation is that Ms. Korner is very anxious for that
11 witness to start as soon as possible so that all of his testimony can be
12 completed before the weekend, and I think that makes good sense.
13 JUDGE HALL: Well, we're at the start of the second session for
14 today. When, as you see things now, do you expect to begin him, to begin
15 his testimony?
16 MR. DI FAZIO: Immediately after this witness.
17 JUDGE HALL: Yes, but in terms of time, when?
18 JUDGE HARHOFF: In other words, how long is your redirect going
19 to be?
20 MR. DI FAZIO: Oh, I see. I'm sorry, I misunderstood you. As
21 things stand at the moment, I have none. And -- yes, none at the moment.
22 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Di Fazio, when is 163 -- when does he have to
24 leave The Hague? Do you know?
25 MR. DI FAZIO: Saturday morning, I'm told.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
2 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
3 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic, we're aware of the original estimate
4 of time that your cross-examination was intended to take, but the
5 Chamber's observation is the way the cross-examination has proceeded to
6 date, that it is such that we are requiring you to complete your
7 cross-examination by the end of this session.
8 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] You mean this session,
9 Your Honours?
10 JUDGE HALL: Yes, the end of the session that we're beginning,
11 which would ordinarily end at 12.05.
12 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, then I shouldn't
13 even begin, because I can't conclude, and if I have opportunity to say
14 this, please hear me out. It is an unnatural pressure that the witness
15 we are discussing be heard by a certain time. This pressure is occurring
16 not for the first time. For the Prosecution, the next witness is much
17 more important than the witness currently on the stand, but they say so
18 only after they have completed their in-chief, and then they put pressure
19 on the Defence to shorten their cross-examination.
20 Now, the witness has to attend a wedding. We deleted one witness
21 from the list to accommodate that. Now we are asked additionally --
22 JUDGE HALL: If I might interrupt you, Mr. Cvijetic. I'm not
23 concerned about the witness to come. The reason for the Chamber
24 requiring you to complete your cross-examination by 12 -- by the end of
25 this session is that in terms of what we would have heard from the
1 witness presently on the stand, there has been no challenge to her
2 methodology or her credibility or competence as an expert witness, and
3 therefore it does not appear to us that the way that cross-examination
4 has proceeded has been within the requirements for relevance, which is
5 the fundamental criterion even for cross-examination. And having regard
6 to the demonstrated path down which you have proceeded so far, that is
7 why we are requiring you to wind up your cross-examination of this
8 witness at the end of this session.
9 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, with all due
10 respect, the methodology of cross-examination implies also a certain
11 tactic. In that tactic, the punch line comes at the end. All my
12 introductory remarks I will attempt to link up with the specific findings
13 of Mrs. Tabeau at the end when we open up some of her tables. But if you
14 don't make it possible for me to do that, I cannot reach that final goal.
15 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Cvijetic, you indicated yourself that you
16 would need approximately two hours and the Court relied on that. So my
17 best advice is get on with it and let's round this up by the end of this
18 session. You have plenty of time to put the questions that you need,
19 and -- and there is no point in seeking to start out with a number of
20 irrelevant questions just in order to put your final questions in the
21 end. You may as well proceed straightforward and directly to the
22 questions that you really want to put to the witness. So let's get on
23 with it.
24 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I will not be able to
25 complete by that time, hence I will go as far as I can and stop then.
1 Our initial assessment was four hours for myself and four hours for my
2 learned friend. When we discussed how to divide our examinations in
3 terms of topics, I suggested that I take over a number of topics he
4 intended to cover, and that's why I -- I need additional time to what we
5 had originally requested. That is why the change. However, we never
6 opposed any such requests made by the OTP, and I am uncertain why that is
7 imposed on us now.
8 Q. Ms. Tabeau, we arrive at the sources you used. Out of that
9 number sources, if we start with the most relevant up to the least
10 relevant or least reliable from a scientific point of view, would you be
11 able to put them in such an order?
12 A. You are speaking of which report?
13 Q. The sources you used for all of your reports. Not a single
14 report but all of your reports that refer to the sources you specified.
15 A. Well, I think major sources I used for the IDPs and refugees
16 report, the census and the voters are of course the essential sources.
17 The rest sources are -- used are contextual so are not my major sources.
18 I didn't use them for -- to produce statistics. And when it comes to the
19 report on victims, I think I used sources that I see as highly valuable,
20 highly valuable and as you certainly remember, there is a table in -- in
21 my report in which the sources are listed and I'm taking you to page --
22 page 8 in the English version. We discussed this table yesterday.
23 Q. You haven't answered my question. Please hear me out. If we
24 refer to sources, would you be able to make a list that starts with the
25 most relevant and ends with the least relevant?
1 A. All my sources are relevant. It is not that they are irrelevant.
2 They are all relevant. This is what I'm trying to tell you. I said for
3 the IDPs report, census and the voters are my essential sources. Other
4 sources are contextual. And in the report on victims, all my sources are
5 relevant. But obviously, the ICMP records of the DNA identification of
6 Srebrenica victims were not used for this report, whereas they were used
7 for the entire integrated Bosnia database, because Srebrenica is part of
8 it and is not of this case. So that's the -- how to read the relevance
9 of the sources. That's my answer.
10 Q. Ms. Tabeau, in your report you say that some of those sources are
11 not reliable and that do not -- and that they do not have equal
12 scientific value. In your addendum B5 to the Milosevic case, at page 235
13 in the B/C/S and 222 in the English -- it is 65 ter 10398. Well, I'll
14 read out. We don't need to wait for it to appear on the screen.
15 You say registering to vote was voluntary, which means that the
16 list of voters is but one of the samples of post-war population, because
17 it excludes those who had not registered to vote, because they were
18 either not interested or because they were ill or too young or too old?
19 A. Yes. This is what I said, and this is true. But at the same
20 time, you must be aware of the fact that there was no next census. There
21 has been no census since 1991 in Bosnia and Herzegovina. So while we
22 know that voters register has certain deficiencies and is incomplete,
23 there is no alternative source that would be complete and covering the
24 entire population that we could have used in this study.
25 Q. Very well. In the same exhibit, at page 222 in the B/C/S and 208
1 in the English version, you say that the census itself as the single most
2 important starting point for your research has its deficiencies, but you
3 begin that sentence in the following way:
4 "Due to the aggression against Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1992,
5 the data processing procedure of the census information was halted."
6 Ms. Tabeau, this term "the aggression against
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina," did you coin that term? Is it yours?
8 A. It is clearly indicated in that report, Milosevic report, that
9 this particular annex, Annex B3, was written by Nora Selimovic. She's
10 the author of this particular text, and I didn't make any changes in her
11 original report. She was the one who participated in the Republican
12 Census Commission and in the census itself.
13 Q. Those reports drafted in Sarajevo, in the institute you referred
14 to in your report, as well as those reports based on the survey conducted
15 in Sarajevo are accepted as relevant sources by you. I believe in the
16 Milosevic case, you did say that, nonetheless, these sources were biased.
17 A. Well, I did accept the report by Nora Selimovic, and I did accept
18 the Sarajevo Household Survey to which you are referring. The survey was
19 conducted in 1994. It is one of the sources I used for the victims
20 report, but I am not recalling I'm calling these sources biased. I'm not
21 blaming Nora Selimovic to be biased. She is the best professional who
22 can give us the opinion about how the technicalities of how the census
23 were done. That is one thing. And Sarajevo Household Survey, it is a
24 survey -- it is a wartime survey, so conducted in mid-1994 by a group of
25 people who just went to see every household living within the front lines
1 and collected reports from these households about all deaths that
2 occurred in their families until the moment of the survey.
3 I don't think there is any bias here. If it is a survey that is
4 meant to be complete, that every household is questioned on these issues,
5 if they would have been selective according -- or acted to a criterion
6 that would be oriented towards one ethnic group and not others, but I
7 don't recall calling them biased. If you could show me this in my
8 reports, I would be grateful.
9 I worked with sources from all sides. I have, for instance,
10 RS Mortality Database that was compiled for us by the statistical office
11 of the Republika Srpska in Banja Luka. I had a long co-operation with
12 Mr. Slavko Sobot, the director of the office, and I accepted all this
13 data as much as I accepted data from the federal authority. So I
14 disagree that I am biased in accepting my sources. I take sources which
15 are most relevant and most reliable. I just work with the best sources
17 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours, please, RS is missing from
18 line 10. I think that's important.
19 THE WITNESS: Indeed, RS is missing, RS Mortality Database.
20 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Ms. Tabeau, to be fair to you, not even the data you used that
22 were collected by the national security agency of Banja Luka represents
23 anything more than their assessment and information gathered by operative
24 work. Those were not -- that is not information gathered by standard
25 methods when studying populations. Is that not correct?
1 A. Well, I might -- I have my doubts regarding the method. At some
2 point I discussed the surveys with Mr. Sobot, the director of RS
3 statistics, but he insisted these surveys were run according to formal
4 statistical procedures for conducting the surveys. I can, however,
5 imagine during the wartime not all statistical procedures could be
6 followed because of the war, because of the fighting that was going on,
7 because of the chaos, because of many difficulties. And as I said, the
8 RS sources are contextual. I never used these sources for making my own
10 Q. Can it be justified in terms of methodology to compare and merge
11 a methodologically sound source such as a census with sources which, as
12 you yourself say, bear deficiencies --
13 MR. DI FAZIO: I object, if Your Honours please.
14 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. -- all the way up to being openly biased.
16 MR. DI FAZIO: The witness has just said that she didn't do that.
17 She just said that she didn't do that. She didn't use the RS sources to
18 draw her conclusions in her reports, all three of them. She looked at
19 them, she looked at what they said, and you can see that in her report,
20 but she just said that she didn't merge them -- sorry, the expression
21 used by Mr. Cvijetic is that she merged them. She says she didn't. She
22 looked at them and she spoke to this guy, this Mr. Sobot, and she
23 provided a report, but she didn't use them in drawing the conclusions in
24 her reports.
25 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic, your question as phrased --
1 Mr. Di Fazio is correct in his objection, but I think -- if I think I
2 understand what you're getting at, perhaps you need to ask a preliminary
3 question before you rephrase that question.
4 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I -- I thank Mr. Di Fazio for
5 answering my question, hence there's no point in repeating it. I had in
6 mind the methodology approach by which one should not link separate
7 documents of different degrees of reliability. That is the gist of my
9 Q. Is that methodologically sound and justifiable, Mrs. Tabeau?
10 A. By linking you mean just comparing, putting one source on one
11 side, another on other side, and that is wrong, you are saying, because
12 the sources are so extremely uncomparable in terms of methodology. I
13 think what is -- what regards the methodology, as I said, I have my
14 doubts about -- about the methodology, that these surveys by the RS MUP
15 were not conducted, I think, according to the statistical regulations.
16 On the other hand, I know from a statistic authority they were attempted
17 at least to be completed according to statistical regulations. So, okay,
18 there is some doubt about the methodology. Still, the coverage of the
19 sources and the period on which the sources report are relevant. Why
20 don't look at these sources to create some additional information about
21 the time in which I'm interested? I see no problem in that.
22 JUDGE HALL: Ms. Tabeau, there is a word that you used that I
23 didn't get, and neither did the reporter. It's still the something of
24 the sources.
25 THE WITNESS: The coverage, territorial coverage.
1 JUDGE HALL: Thank you.
2 THE WITNESS: Territorial coverage and the time periods are
4 JUDGE HALL: Thank you.
5 THE WITNESS: And I'm comparing what is comparable from this
6 point of view. I am not comparing things that are completely different
7 and uncomparable.
8 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Ms. Tabeau -- Ms. Tabeau, if one distributes 85 questionnaire --
10 85.000 questionnaires in Sarajevo in order to try and ascertain the
11 number of war victims, and if such a survey is conducted by Muslims, and
12 if the results of that survey are explained by saying "killed during
13 enemy aggression," "killed by enemy forces," "killed by aggressor sniper
14 shooter," could such findings or results be considered biased? Yes or
16 A. You are referring killed during enemy aggression. These are the
17 terms from where? From the questionnaire, from the reports these authors
18 made about these results or I used the terms? As far as I recall, I
19 never used these terms in any of my report.
20 Q. I have shown the page of your report in which you quote the
21 report which states: "Due to the aggression on Bosnia and Herzegovina,
22 the data was not analysed," et cetera. So you even accepted the
23 terminology of that report. Please just answer my question. Is such
24 data collected in that way biased? Yes or no?
25 A. First of all, the page you are referring to relates to the
1 census, and it was written by Nora Selimovic. If there is another page
2 in which these kind of terms are used in my reports, then please show
3 this page to me. That is one thing. Okay? Once we clarify this, then I
4 can tell you that -- give you the answer then. As far as I remember, I
5 myself never used this kind of terms in any report of mine.
6 Q. Ms. Tabeau, in the Milosevic case when you were assessing the
7 quality of sources received by the Sarajevo institute, at page 27162, you
8 openly stated that the sources were biased. Do you recall that?
9 A. You are referring to Milosevic case IDPs report or another report
10 from Milosevic case? I did have some reports on Sarajevo in Milosevic
11 case, that is correct. But if you are referring to these reports, then
12 please tell me which report was that.
13 Q. Ms. Tabeau, you commented upon the scientific quality of the
14 sources received from Sarajevo. That's the topic of our discussion, and
15 on the page I referred you to, you -- you termed them as biased. Do you
16 recall that?
17 MR. DI FAZIO: The witness has already said that she's got
18 trouble answering that question because she doesn't know what report's
19 being referred to. And the whole process would be vastly simplified if
20 the passage from the transcript was simply read to her and put to her.
21 Then she knows exactly what's going on and she can answer the question.
22 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Would it assist you, Ms. Tabeau, to have your reply from the
24 Milosevic case read out to you? Can you hear me?
25 A. Yes, of course. Yes, of course. This is what I am still waiting
1 for. I need the source in order to be able to comment on it.
2 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I will ask my
3 assistant to read out in English, and I'd like to ask the interpreters to
4 interpret it into the other languages.
5 MS. SAVIC: "All right. But in your opinion, since you're a
6 demographer and since you're involved in scientific work, do you think
7 that this approach is partial?
8 "A. Well, I can make an assessment of the scientific quality of
9 the questionnaire and how the survey was conducted on the basis of what I
10 know about the survey and the questionnaire, and indeed this is one
11 thing. I cannot say whether it was partial or impartial. I can say that
12 the material was probably biased a little bit towards more frequently
13 counting Muslim casualties than casualties from other ethnic groups.
14 Why? Because people who conducted the survey were engaged in the
15 survey -- survey were mainly the Bosnian Muslims from Sarajevo. So
16 therefore, they could have had a little bit easier access to respondents
17 of the same ethnicity than as to respondents from other ethnic groups."
18 MR. DI FAZIO: Can I have the page number of the transcript,
20 MS. SAVIC: Page 27162, Milosevic case.
21 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.
22 THE WITNESS: Yes. Thank you. I know what this passage relates
23 to. It is related to the Sarajevo report that I made for the Milosevic
24 case. It is about the Sarajevo Household Survey of 1994 that I already
25 mentioned, and it -- this survey indeed was run by Bosniaks, who most
1 definitely had the easiest access to the Bosniak families. But the
2 survey as such was claimed by the authors to be indiscriminative in the
3 sense that every household who lived within the area of the front lines
4 was covered. This is one thing.
5 I said indeed slightly biased towards Bosniak or Muslim victims
6 and it is probably the case. But if you think that in the RS Mortality
7 Database there are all Bosniaks and no Serbs, no. It is the other way
8 around. These are mainly Serb victims reported there. So that's the
9 whole thing about sources on war victims. Sources are biased this way or
10 another, and therefore it is very important -- important to work with
11 many sources, to combine the sources and to eliminate the bias and to
12 understand that there is a bias.
13 If I have used the Sarajevo Household Survey as the only source,
14 exclusively source in the integrated mortality database of Sarajevo, then
15 I would be wrong, but I didn't. I had several other sources that covered
16 Sarajevo as well, and so was it in the Sarajevo report that I presented
17 in the Milosevic case. It was a study based on eight large sources on
18 war victims.
19 So the point is, yes, I'm aware, sources are biased. And we have
20 to do our best to understand this bias, identify the bias, and be able to
21 deal with it in order to come up with unbiased statistics.
22 And I'm absolutely truly convinced that the statistics that they
23 obtained from the integrated database have no ethnic bias as such. Why?
24 Because of the many sources we used that covered all ethnic groups, all
25 territories, all major incidents. It's all very well covered. So I can
1 assure you there is no ethnic bias in this database.
2 Q. Ms. Tabeau, you will agree with me, since you touched upon a
3 topic that I meant to deal with at the end, which is the issue of victims
4 and mortality, that in that area, the grey area not backed by solid data
5 is the largest, because we have in that area the most extreme research
6 including 500.000 victims down to a -- down to the figure of 80 or
7 90.000 victims that you referred to.
8 A. You are incorrect. 500.000 victims have never been mentioned by
9 any author for the war of Bosnia -- in Bosnia and Herzegovina. There
10 have been various estimates. The highest, I believe, was
11 340.000 victims. The lowest was 25.000. The minimum number we
12 presented, 90.000, is actually -- yeah, not definitely the highest one
13 and not definitely the lowest one. It is somewhere there in between.
14 But what is important about our number, 90.000, or the more
15 complete estimate including the estimated undercount, which gives us
16 104.000 victims approximately, this number actually is also supported by
17 results of a totally different group of people, people who operate in the
18 former Yugoslavia, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in Sarajevo. I'm speaking
19 of Mr. Mirsad Tokaca and his centre, documentation and research centre in
20 Sarajevo. They established a database on war victims in Bosnia and
21 Herzegovina completely independently from the work we've been doing here,
22 and these victims are also documented with personal details, names and
23 details as well. And he obtained a number approximately 99.000 victims.
24 So it's the same class. It is the same class of result; right?
25 So I would think of these two as the two most serious attempts to
1 estimate victims of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and I could -- I
2 could go on explaining why, and I could say things about every single of
3 the estimates presented so far, but I think we don't have time for this,
4 so I will finish here.
5 Q. You obviously do have time, whilst, on the other hand, I don't.
6 I will accept the range you specified. In that case, you have to agree
7 with me that in the area of mortality, the figures were played with the
8 most, and I refer you pack to the maxim I mentioned at the beginning: If
9 one wants a certain figure, that figure will be ascribed the importance
10 one wishes to attach to it. However, Ms. Tabeau, you will agree with me
11 that even within the range you referred to, the game goes on, in the
12 sense of how many people were killed as soldiers and how many were
13 civilians. If we add to that the natural, undisputed fact that there
14 were natural deaths as well in that period, there is a possibility for
15 manipulation even with the figure of 90.000. Is it not correct?
16 A. Well, the 90.000 I produced is well documented. I exactly know
17 and wrote about it, what sources were used, what methodology was used.
18 I -- I've been completely transparent about the method, unlike many other
19 authors about their results.
20 If there is room for manipulation, then it is not research
21 anymore. It is the manipulation, and this is something I'm not
22 interested in. We don't need that. We don't want manipulation. We want
23 solid research that can be discussed, about which we can be open, and
24 others can express their opinions about this research. This is what we
25 need, and this is what I have been doing many, many years.
1 I think that the 100.000 of victims that have been produced for
2 Bosnia by my group and also by group of Mr. Tokaca, I think are good
3 numbers. If -- if there are people who want manipulate, this is their
4 problem, but the victims don't need that, the families of the victims.
5 We don't need that. Nobody needs manipulation. That is how I see it.
6 Q. Is there an institution in existence at this point in time which
7 can firmly stand behind a number of those killed and the number of those
8 who died due to natural causes, as well as an exact figure of those who
9 perished in combat operations, as well as the number of civilians?
10 MR. DI FAZIO: I object to the question, if Your Honours please.
11 It's now entering the realm of repetition, and it's -- it's, with
12 respect, not particularly coherent. First of all, there's a question
13 about an institution in existence which can firmly stand behind a number
14 of those killed. The witness has just told you and repeated it twice in
15 several answers that she's made an assessment of people killed in Bosnia
16 that the OTP demographics unit has. She stands by it, you've heard her
17 say that. She also mentioned another, this other organisation in Bosnia
18 headed by this Mr. Tokaca. And finally, the witness in her reports said
19 nothing about any study into people dying of natural causes. If
20 Mr. Cvijetic wants to demonstrate that somehow the studies are flawed
21 because there is no study of people who died from natural causes, well,
22 he can do that, but he must proceed to that topic, not the way the
23 question is framed at the moment, which touches upon institutions,
24 whether they stand behind their figures, and whether or not natural
25 causes are discussed by those institutions or this witness. It's
2 JUDGE HALL: Please try again, Mr. Cvijetic.
3 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I believe the question was clear.
4 Mr. Di Fazio stood for no other reason but to waste my time and did not
5 assist me in reaching any answers.
6 Q. My question was: Is there an institution which can firmly stand
7 behind the four figures I just referred to?
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: And what would be the relevance of that question,
9 Mr. Cvijetic?
10 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it includes an entire
11 chapter of Ms. Tabeau's work which deals with war victims.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: I still don't see the relevance.
13 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, there is great
14 relevance in the number of those who got killed in combat participating
15 in the war and those who got killed as civilians, because the latter are
16 a protected category that we deal with here.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Why don't you ask about that then instead of
18 asking about institutions.
19 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] It is a substantial issue whether
20 that information exists and from whom we can get it.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Well, I will not use your precious time further,
22 Mr. Cvijetic.
23 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Well, there is no time. It's
24 already been used up.
25 Q. Mrs. Tabeau, I'm not getting an answer, whatever I ask. I'll
1 move to my next question. My colleague discussed with you the
2 deficiencies in ID numbers, and you've already answered that.
3 Do you know that these inaccuracies in ID numbers amount to 30 to
4 40 per cent? Do you have that information?
5 A. I -- I don't recall these exact per cent. However, there are two
6 things. There is the date of birth, seven first digits, and that is the
7 actual maticni broj, that is the remaining digits of the 13. When it
8 comes to the date of birth, which was very important for us --
9 Q. You have answered that. I just want to know if you had the
10 information about the inaccuracies that I just mentioned.
11 A. This is what I'm trying to tell you. I am aware of inaccuracies,
12 and they are related to the actual maticni broj, not to the date of birth
13 that is essential for us in our work. So the other part, the maticni
14 broj, the actual maticni broj that begins with the record of region of
15 birth or residence for older persons plus the sequential number coding
16 the sexes, plus the check digit, that is the actual maticni broj, and
17 most deficiencies are related to this component and, who knows, perhaps
18 there will be 30 per cent deficient missing whatsoever. But for us, the
19 date of birth is the crucial part of it, and this is reported quite well
20 in the census. So the percentage of missing date of births would be
21 approximately 2 per cent, something like that. So it is not 30 per cent.
22 Q. I'm telling you that the percentage of inaccuracies is 30 to
23 40 per cent. That is the position of the Defence, and we will elaborate
25 Did you in your research deal with the causes of certain
1 demographic occurrences in Bosnia and Herzegovina, causes and effects?
2 A. Well, did deal with the effects. These are the demographic
3 consequences. But I didn't discuss the causes as such.
4 Q. Would you be able to give an estimate for this period you dealt
5 with? There is a war period in that time-frame, and the time proceeding
6 the electoral lists in 1997, 1998. Do you have compounded data for these
8 A. I don't know exactly what you mean. I don't understand the
9 question exactly.
10 Q. It's a very clear question. Did you follow the trends in the
11 distribution of population after the war, that is to say, between 1995
12 and 1998, and were there any changes that you would call dramatic?
13 A. Well, as I mentioned earlier today, for the war period we lack
14 sources of information about the population, and also for the years after
15 the war, sources are extremely limited, and we don't have population
16 record as such. So it is hard to say what was the population dynamics in
17 the years until the 1997-8 election.
18 But of course, some information exists and I looked at this
19 information, and unfortunately these are mainly population projections.
20 The most serious ones were made for the post-war period by the United
21 Nations Social Economic Division in New York and they estimated the size
22 of the population in this period. Some presented some trends in -- in
23 the birth rates, mortality rates and migration. Another source that
24 exists for these years is the UNHCR. This is United Nations High
25 Commissioner for Refugees, and why this source is relevant? It's
1 relevant because of the returns, of course, and in particular returns of
2 the minority groups. As we all remember, in the Dayton Peace Agreement
3 there is a whole chapter about the importance of people returning home.
4 So conditions must -- had to be created to make it possible for people to
5 return home.
6 As I mentioned yesterday, we are speaking of more than 2 million
7 people who at the end of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina were displaced,
8 were not living at their place of residence, pre-war place of residence.
9 And a majority group among these two -- more than 2 millions were
10 minorities. So these are people who moved out from territories that are
11 no more in hands of their ethnic group after the war. So minority
12 returns is a very important issue. So I did study the minority returns
13 for these years. And unfortunately for the years directly after the war,
14 the minority returns are not very frequent. Why? Because there is no
15 yet good political climate for this. The situation is still very
16 sensitive. So people are waiting, waiting until the situation will
17 improve, that they will be able to -- to go home.
18 So I did study some sources, sir.
19 Q. You speak about changes in terms of return. However, after the
20 Dayton Peace Accords, 150.000 Serbs moved out of Sarajevo to the
21 territory of Republika Srpska. Can that change be considered dramatic in
22 the entire framework of internally displaced people after the war?
23 A. I am unaware of these 150.000 Serbs. There were, of course,
24 Serbs who moved out of Sarajevo. And Sarajevo is just one of the
25 examples of split municipalities, several Sarajevo municipalities were
1 split, and one part of a municipality was decided to be a federation,
2 another part Republika Srpska. It was quite a common phenomenon for the
3 split municipalities that people moved within the municipalities. So the
4 Serbs from the federal part went to the Serb part, and the Bosniaks and
5 the other non-Serbs from the Serb part went to the federal part. So I'm
6 sure there were Serbs who had to leave certain parts of Sarajevo and move
7 to the RS territories.
8 Of course whether it was dramatic, I think -- well, hard to tell
9 without having an exact number. I think for many groups this movement,
10 forced movement, were dramatic. For every person it was dramatic, I
11 think. Every single person who was -- who had to move out and go to
12 another place, it's a dramatic change in life, most definitely. I agree
13 with that.
14 Q. Change is also dramatic from the point of view of the number of
15 those who left. But let me ask you this: In the Milosevic case, you
16 also included 26 municipalities in the federation. Not the entire
17 federation, just these municipalities. And if we compare data for the
18 total population, the change in the national -- sorry, in the ethnic
19 make-up of the population in the Republika Srpska and the part of the
20 federation you studied is as follows in percentages according to you: In
21 Republika Srpska, the change is minus 95 per cent of the Muslims; and in
22 the federation, it goes up to minus 88 per cent of Serbs.
23 Do you recall these percentages that you discussed in the
24 Milosevic case?
25 A. Well, if I don't recall exact numbers, I am not surprised with
1 what you are saying. This is what I said a few minutes ago. So that is
2 the nature of what happened in the country like Bosnia and Herzegovina.
3 The country has been split into two parts. One part is the RS, one is
4 the federation. So people moved. The Serbs from the federal part went
5 to the RS. The non-Serbs from RS, mainly Muslims, moved out and moved
6 to -- into the federation. So that is what happened. The -- the -- you
7 know, if you look at the change in the ethnic composition for the entire
8 country, the changes are minor, I could -- I would say for the entire
9 country. But if you go down and you look at the changes for the
10 political entities, the changes will be dramatic, and for the RS they
11 will be opposite to those that we will see in the federation. So that is
12 the nature of these moments. That is what happened during this war.
13 There were huge movements of the population, and the -- the Dayton line
14 actually split the country along the ethnic lines. That is what
16 JUDGE DELVOIE: Ms. Tabeau, I would like to suggest to you in
17 order to allow Mr. Cvijetic to ask as many questions as possible within
18 the time-frame to give short answers, please.
19 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
20 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. You have almost anticipated my next question. You would agree
22 with me, I suppose, that Bosnia-Herzegovina has a certain body of
23 population that we've just divided into ethnic groups, and the moving out
24 of one ethnic community, or a certain part of that community, into
25 another entity, for instance, the move of Muslims from Republika Srpska
1 in the -- into the federation, would increase the percentage of Serbs in
2 the total population of Republika Srpska and would also increase the
3 percentage of Muslims in the total population of the federation.
4 You will agree with me that this is the principle of connected
5 vessels. If a certain population gets reduced in percentage in one
6 entity, its percentage in the other entity will increase.
7 A. Yeah, roughly speaking. There is also this newcomers component;
8 right? So it depends who is moving in in addition to these people who
9 move out. But in roughly speaking, it is a system like that.
10 Q. I think we agree on this line of questioning, because you seem to
11 be anticipating all my questions.
12 The Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina is -- has a certain body
13 of population. It does not have any reserve Muslims, reserve Serbs, and
14 reserve Croats. So this principle of connected vessels functions.
15 Would you get similar findings if you included in your sums the
16 Serbs who moved from Croatia into Republika Srpska?
17 A. Well, there were some Serbs, Croatian Serbs, who moved into
18 Bosnia. That is correct. The number wasn't that high. As far as I
19 remember, it was 25.000 of Croatian Serbs reported by the year 2000 in
20 the governmental system of registration of internally displaced persons
21 and refugees. So 25.000 of new-coming Serbs from Croatia compared to the
22 overall population size of -- at the end of the war, as estimated by the
23 UN, 3.5 million people, I think it is a very small number. I think it
24 wouldn't have any significant impact on the ethnic composition unless
25 they would, all the 25.000, moved into one municipality. I wouldn't see
1 it as a significant contributing to the increased fractions of the Serb
2 population in many -- in practically all municipalities of Republika
3 Srpska after the war.
4 Q. The system of samples that you used in the Milosevic case when
5 you selected seven municipalities covers in terms of data around
6 212.000 Muslims. That is 12 per cent of the total number of Muslims in
7 109 municipalities. And there were about 1.905.000 of them.
8 I would like to know if this sample could be sufficiently
9 representative in these seven selected municipalities to provide general
10 demographic conclusions for the entirety of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
11 A. I think this sample concept here is completely unclear to me. It
12 is seven municipalities, whole municipalities. On one hand we have for
13 them the census data 1991 complete. On the other hand we have the voters
14 records for matching, et cetera. So I think the seven municipalities are
15 seven municipalities. That's all I can say. I presented separate
16 statistics for seven municipalities, for 47 municipalities, and for
17 Bosnia-Herzegovina as a whole. So we don't need any samples for Bosnia.
18 We have complete statistics for the entire country.
19 Q. You spoke about refugees. In fact, you determined their number
20 based on the number of registered voters abroad, and that's what you
21 called them, voters who registered to vote from abroad. That number also
22 contains the number of citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina who had been
23 there earlier, before the war, so-called economic emigres. You attached
24 to all of them the status of refugees, and you calculated that including
25 them in the statistics would bear a margin of error, margin of
1 statistical error, of 4.6 per cent.
2 Would you tell me, what is the -- the generally tolerable margin
3 of error in statistics?
4 A. Well, we usually speak when we think of inferential statistics
5 that 5 per cent error is the tolerable error. Of course there might be a
6 lower error, 1 per cent error, 3 per cent, 4 per cent. So these are the
7 ranges of acceptable error.
8 Q. Right. Then we see that this threshold is gone, and it's all
9 used up on the margin of error created by including all the people abroad
10 into the category of refugees. And if we add to that the error, the
11 mathematical error of including Yugoslavs and the effect of ignoring the
12 150.000 Serbs who moved out of Sarajevo, the number of those who came
13 from Croatia, the mistakes in ID numbers, the mistakes in bias inherent
14 in the sources of data like the one I just pointed out, especially in
15 terms of casualties and missing persons, and the errors in the
16 calculation of the initial original number of persons who were of age at
17 the critical moment, that is to say, those born before 1980, and I intend
18 to show you a table about that if we have time, then the total sum of
19 these errors multiplies your threshold, and we get a very significant
20 percentage of error.
21 Do you agree with me?
22 JUDGE HALL: I don't think the witness should be required to
23 answer that question. It's obviously the first plank in Mr. Cvijetic's
24 closing remarks on -- on this area of this bit of evidence. But it isn't
25 something that allows a question that the witness could answer.
1 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if it is not, I
2 agree with you. In any case, it will be relevant for our demographic
3 expert who will deal with it.
4 Q. Mrs. Tabeau, do you agree with me that on the changes in ethnical
5 structure, trends in distribution, and total population potentials of
6 individual ethnic groups in Bosnia and Herzegovina, there are over a
7 longer historical period several -- or, rather, numerous socio -- socio
8 and natural factors impacting? Would you agree with me?
9 MR. DI FAZIO: I object, if Your Honours please. We're getting
10 back into that area of factors in -- affecting population potentials of
11 individual ethnic groups. I don't see how that's possibly relevant to
12 the central questions of movement of people and numbers of deaths. You
13 can see where this is going.
14 JUDGE HALL: The -- Mr. Cvijetic has five minutes left. If he
15 wishes to use it in this manner and if the witness can venture an
16 opinion, go ahead.
17 THE WITNESS: I may answer, yes? In the population development
18 there are always natural factors. That is birth, deaths. There is
19 migration, and there are socio-economic factors. Of course we are
20 speaking about prosperity and safety and the political climate. It all
21 has an impact on how the population develops. But this is -- I think we
22 are talking now -- at least I'm talking in my reports about a very
23 special period. It is about the war period, and one has to agree that in
24 the war period there are extraordinary factors operating that bring
25 certain consequences, demographic consequences of war. And even though I
1 didn't study causes of the demographic phenomena like migration and
2 war-related deaths, it is of course true to -- to -- to say war was one
3 of the crucial factors that caused these consequences, and that's all I
4 can say.
5 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Is one of the results of demographic movements in Bosnia and
7 Herzegovina something that led to ethnic territorial homogenisation, and
8 is the ethnic map of Bosnia-Herzegovina as a result now simpler?
9 A. I don't know what you mean by homogeneous here. Well, the
10 homogeneous is the ethnic composition within every political entity.
11 Meaning that Serbs are mainly living in the RS and Bosniaks and Croats in
12 the federation, and they have -- and each group is dominant in almost
13 every municipality in each political entity. But country-wide, I
14 wouldn't call it a homogenisation of the country because that is the
15 opposite of what happened; right?
16 Q. I wasn't talking about the state. I was talking about ethnic
17 territorial homogenisation. Are you aware that political factors affect
18 this ethnic territorial homogenisation as well as economic factors,
19 geographic factors, and sociopsychological factors? Are you aware of all
20 of them?
21 A. This is not my area, really. I didn't study that, and I would
22 be, I think -- I -- I don't think I have an opinion on that.
23 Q. In your opinion, was the decision of one part of the population
24 of Bosnia and Herzegovina to leave the country and go live elsewhere in
25 Western Europe and even across the ocean affected by the liberalisation
1 of immigrant visas for these countries and the opportunity to see their
2 economic problems resolved in that way as well?
3 MR. DI FAZIO: What period of time are we talking about, the
4 1970s when the guest workers left Yugoslavia? Are we talking about the
5 period of time after Dayton? It seems -- the question's just lacking any
6 clarity at all, with respect.
7 JUDGE HALL: In any event, it's 12.06. It's time for the
8 adjournment, and that is the end of Mr. Cvijetic's cross-examination.
9 Mr. Di Fazio, when we return, we will -- your very brief
10 re-examination and then -- then the next witness, I suppose.
11 MR. DI FAZIO: That's --
12 JUDGE HALL: And I would indicate that we have confirmed the
13 availability of this courtroom for an extended sitting tomorrow.
14 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just one minute
15 before you finish. This will take just one minute of your time.
16 For me to complete the cross-examination of Mrs. Tabeau, I need
17 one session, and I apply to you to grant me that session or to recall
18 Mrs. Tabeau at a different time for me to conclude, because the time you
19 granted me was certainly not sufficient, and it's certainly below the
20 time allocated to us. In one more session, I have more questions for
21 Mrs. Tabeau, and I also have practical examples to present that will
22 illustrate the significance of all I've said so far. And if you have
23 made a concession to the Prosecution --
24 JUDGE HALL: The Chamber has ruled on this question and I have no
25 intention of re-opening it.
1 Yes. We take the adjournment.
2 Sorry, before we rise, I had in phrasing my question to
3 Mr. Di Fazio referred to what I anticipated would be at best a very brief
4 re-examination. Could you confirm that you have any questions in
5 redirect, Mr. Di Fazio?
6 MR. DI FAZIO: Zero, if Your Honours please.
7 JUDGE HALL: Thank you. In which case, we thank you, Ms. Tabeau,
8 for your assistance, and you are now released. Thank you.
9 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
10 [The witness withdrew]
11 --- Recess taken at 12.08 p.m.
12 --- On resuming at 12.31 p.m.
13 JUDGE HALL: Yes. Is the Prosecution ready with its next
15 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, perhaps before we proceed
16 to that there's just one matter left over from the last witness. I
17 understand that you want me to read formally into the record the reports
18 and associated exhibits that the Prosecution seeks the admission of.
19 Firstly 10397, 65 ter 10397. That's the IDP case report. The
20 expert report prepared in the Milosevic case and that's 10398. The
21 addendum report, that's 10399. Some corrected pages to the addendum
22 report, that's 10399.1. The victims of war report, that's 10400. The
23 corrigendum that was prepared before the summer break, that's 10400.01.
24 And the summary of principal findings of the report -- the victims of war
25 report, that's 10400.02, and they're all the -- that's the list there.
1 And if Your Honours please, I will excuse myself now.
2 JUDGE HALL: Yes, thank you. Could you remind me as to whether
3 we need to make a formal order for admission.
4 MS. KORNER: Yes.
5 JUDGE HALL: So ordered.
6 Yes, Mr. Krgovic.
7 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we have the same
8 objection -- before admitting this document, we wanted to repeat our
9 objection given the specific position Ms. Tabeau occupies as an OTP
10 employee. We do not believe the threshold is met for admitting this
11 expert report as an independent report.
12 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] On the behalf of Mr. Stanisic's
13 Defence, I propose that the report be rejected in its entirety, or that
14 the Chamber assign a very low probative value to it in view of the very
15 little time we were given in our attempt to prove that.
16 JUDGE HALL: Yes. Thank you. We're aware of the position -- the
17 general position of Defence counsel on this, and so noted. It's now on
18 the record.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Yes. Therefore, Your Honours, 65 ter 10397 will
20 be Exhibit P01626. 65 ter 10398 will be Exhibit P01627. 65 ter 10399
21 will be Exhibit P01628. 65 ter 10399.1 will be P01629. 65 ter 10400
22 will be P01630. 65 ter 10400.01 will be P01631. And 65 ter 10400.02
23 will be P01632. Thank you.
24 JUDGE HALL: Thank you. Yes, Ms. Korner.
25 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, before the witness comes in can I very
1 briefly revert to the question of the testimony of Ewan Brown, just to
2 explain to Your Honours why Your Honours may have thought that we
3 slightly cavalierly when Your Honours adjourned his cross-examination
4 said in that case we wouldn't be calling him in October. There is a very
5 good reason.
6 Mr. Brown, as I think was explained to you, is now a
7 self-employed contractor. He obtained a three-month job in a continent
8 quite a long way away from here, which began, I believe, about a few
9 weeks ago.
10 As effectively a favour, he agreed that he would lose a week's
11 work to come here to testify, and therefore a week's money, but,
12 Your Honour, it seemed to us that if his cross-examination were to be
13 adjourned, it would be unfair to ask someone who is now self-employed to
14 give up that -- the earnings he could make for that week to travel a
15 great deal of distance, which would also put the Tribunal to more
16 expense, in order to testify for something like four hours and be sent
17 away again, and so that's why we decided that it would be more sensible
18 that his evidence be given as a whole, and we can fill the gap with other
20 JUDGE HALL: Yes, Ms. Korner. Indeed the -- we were reminded of
21 Mr. Hannis, I believe it was, who had in effect asked the Chamber to
22 reconsider the oral ruling that was given, and having so reconsidered it,
23 we are satisfied, especially because the -- the Defence inferentially
24 supports this, that the more efficient use of time, apart from the
25 personal circumstances of the witness to which you have just brought our
1 attention, is such that the entirety of his testimony, that is,
2 examination-in-chief and cross-examination, be postponed until January,
3 and we are hoping that it's the first week in January, the week beginning
4 the 10th.
5 MS. KORNER: Yes. Your Honour, sorry my microphone's gone off.
6 Your Honours, yes. I understand that's the first week back. And,
7 Your Honours, at some stage could we perhaps return to the question of
8 timetabling after the conclusion of the Prosecution case, because I know
9 there's some doubt about whether we really will finish the rest of the
10 evidence in November, but I think there's a high likelihood. So in the
11 light of what was said in open court by His Honour Judge Delvoie about
12 timetabling, I think it may be of assistance to all parties if at some
13 stage we could return to what is actually going to happen.
14 JUDGE HALL: In that vein, Ms. Korner, we trust that Mr. Hannis
15 didn't overspeak when he said that the removal -- or that the deferring
16 of Mr. Brown's testimony from October wouldn't -- wouldn't result in lost
17 days. So there is another witness that you can slot in.
18 MS. KORNER: Oh, Your Honour, yes. We can certainly -- there
19 will be no lost days there. What I'm actually -- sorry, what I'm talking
20 about is the conclusion of all the Prosecution evidence.
21 JUDGE HALL: Yes, yes, I know. It's just that I thought I should
22 also raise that.
23 MS. KORNER: No, no, we are certainly going to fill the gap, Your
24 Honours. So having said that, there's nothing to stop the next witness
25 coming in. Your Honours, may I say that there's no problem about his
1 travel arrangements provided he had can finish tomorrow giving evidence.
2 JUDGE HALL: Thank you.
3 [The witness entered court]
4 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, by your leave, a
5 short preliminary issue regarding the witness, the next witness. As far
6 as I could see from the list of documents that -- provided by the OTP,
7 there are ten documents which are not on the 65 ter list, out of which,
8 in turn, a number of them had not been disclosed to the Defence --
9 MS. KORNER: I think the witness needs to remain outside court.
10 MR. KRGOVIC: Yeah, I agree. Sorry, Your Honour. I think
11 it's -- can the witness be removed from the courtroom for a moment.
12 [The witness withdrew]
13 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Through our legal assistant we
14 advised the OTP of those documents. We sent a list to them. Having in
15 mind the change in schedule of the witness and the circumstances
16 surrounding his testimony, we are against the Prosecution using them
17 during their examination-in-chief, and we would oppose having those
18 documents admitted since there was no formal request put in to add them
19 onto the list, and they should not be used in redirect either so as not
20 to have them admitted through the back door.
21 MS. KORNER: Well, actually, this seems to be turn and turnabout
22 as to who's trying to raise more objections about this witness, but it
23 was Ms. Savic who sent an e-mail complaining that some of the documents
24 were not on our 65 ter list. I accept that. At the moment I have no
25 intention of trying to move them into evidence. One of them is purely a
1 memory-refreshing document. Others we'll see where we go, but at the
2 moment I accept that they're not on our 65 ter. I do not propose to try
3 to make them exhibits.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: What about disclosure, Ms. Korner? There would
5 be five documents --
6 MS. KORNER: These are all documents, Your Honour, that were
7 shown to the witness in his interview with the OTP. For some unknown
8 reason, formal disclosure does not seem to have taken place. I don't
9 know why that is, but we accept that. However, I don't think the Defence
10 can say they're prejudiced, because they got the list. The documents
11 themselves are all contained in EDS. They're not documents that they
12 couldn't -- the Defence couldn't see. They got the list two or three
13 days ago. They're all short documents. If the Defence say in some way
14 they're prejudiced, then perhaps they can explain how.
15 But, Your Honour, I'm sorry. I don't know how it was, but it --
16 it somehow escaped our attention that documents that had actually been
17 shown in interview had not formally been disclosed. Having said that,
18 we've never had a request for the disclosure of these documents either.
19 JUDGE HALL: So we will see where we go. Could the -- there are
20 no protective measures with this witness.
21 MS. KORNER: Exactly. Sorry. Mr. Smith reminds me I should have
22 said e-court. I said EDS. It should have been e-court.
23 JUDGE HALL: Thank you.
24 [The Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
25 [The witness entered court]
1 JUDGE HALL: I trust you can hear me, sir. Would you be so kind
2 as to make the solemn declaration, please.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
4 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
5 WITNESS: SLOBODAN AVLIJAS
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 JUDGE HALL: Thank you. You may be seated.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
9 JUDGE HALL: The solemn declaration that you have just made
10 exposes you to the penalties for perjury which this Tribunal is empowered
11 to impose should you give false or misleading testimony.
12 Would you begin by giving us your name, your date of birth, and
13 your profession, please.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My name is Slobodan Avlijas, and I
15 was born on the 18th of April, 1945, in the village of Rudnik, Ilidza
16 municipality, the city of Sarajevo. I hold a law degree, and I'm
17 currently retired.
18 JUDGE HALL: You say you're currently retired. Did you retire
19 from practice as a lawyer or in some other field of work?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I never acted as attorney. I
21 worked as part of the judiciary. For the last two years of my career I
22 worked in the security centre on a range of issues such as being a member
23 of the commission tasked with searching for the missing persons on behalf
24 of Republika Srpska. I was appointed to that position in 1995. Before
25 that, I worked on education and transitional courses given to employees
1 of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. I also held a number of other
2 positions within the Ministry of Justice.
3 JUDGE HALL: Thank you. What is your ethnicity, sir?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am a Serb.
5 JUDGE HALL: Thank you. Have you testified previously either
6 before this Tribunal or before any of the courts in one of the countries
7 that comprise the former Yugoslavia?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I have. I testified before
9 the state court of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the Momcilo Mandic case, as
10 well as Lalovic and Skiljevic case.
11 JUDGE HALL: In this case you have been called as a witness by
12 the Prosecution, and the procedure which is fairly common among courts is
13 that you -- the side calling you would begin, after which the side
14 opposite would have an opportunity to ask you questions arising out of
15 your testimony, and then the Prosecution would have an opportunity for
16 re-examination arising out of the cross-examination. At that point, or
17 indeed at any earlier point, the Bench itself may have questions of you.
18 The Prosecution has indicated that their examination-in-chief
19 should last for three hours, and counsel for each of the accused have --
20 counsel for the first accused has indicated three hours and counsel for
21 the second accused two hours. So that's a total of eight -- eight hours
22 that is expected that your testimony would take.
23 The Court, of course, does not sit continuously, and indeed the
24 sessions do not exceed an hour ninety minutes for technical reasons
25 having to do with the tapes that have to be changed, the tapes that
1 record the proceedings of the Tribunal, and that also allows for the
2 comfort of -- of the witness, counsel, and indeed everybody involved.
3 But notwithstanding those set breaks, if there are any points at which
4 you yourself would need to take a break, if you indicate that we would
5 accommodate you.
6 You are beginning your testimony in the third session of the
7 ordinary sittings of the court, and we will rise at 1.45, but we will
8 return at 2.30 and rise for the day at 4.00 and resume your testimony
9 tomorrow morning at 9.00.
10 And with that, I would invite counsel for the Prosecution to
12 MS. KORNER: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Examination by Ms. Korner:
14 Q. Mr. Avlijas, can we begin briefly by just going through the steps
15 by which you come to testify today. I think it's right that you were
16 originally interviewed by the Office of the Prosecutor on the
17 11th of December of 1997, and that was almost entirely about the
18 inspection you made of the camps, detention facilities, in October 1992.
19 Is that right?
20 A. Your Honours, that is correct. However, I wouldn't call it an
21 inspection. We simply visited those locations. Had it been an
22 inspection, it would have had the prerogative of supervision.
23 Q. All right. Visits. And you actually provided copies to the
24 Office of the Prosecutor on that occasion of some of the documents that
25 you yourself had. Is that also correct?
1 A. That is correct.
2 Q. Then you were interviewed again by the Office of the Prosecutor
3 on the 13th of August of 2006. It was a tape-recorded interview, and you
4 were interviewed as a potential witness and not as a suspect. Is that
5 also correct?
6 A. It is correct.
7 Q. As you've already told the Court, you testified on behalf of
8 Momcilo Mandic at the trial in the Bosnian court, and that testimony was
9 in 2007. And then did you also testify in December 2009, on behalf of
10 Mr. Lalovic and the gentleman with the first name of Soniboj at their
11 trial at the state court?
12 A. That is correct.
13 Q. And I think, as we know, Mr. Mandic was acquitted, this was the
14 crimes trial, and Mr. Lalovic and the other gentleman were convicted.
15 And I think before actually you testified in the Lalovic trial you'd also
16 been interviewed by the prosecutor in that particular case. I should say
17 the prosecutor in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Is that also right?
18 A. Everything you enumerated is correct. With one remark, though.
19 Lalovic and Skiljevic did not receive their final judgements.
20 Q. Right.
21 A. Yet.
22 Q. In the sense that the conviction is subject to appeal; is that
24 A. Right.
25 Q. And finally, I think you saw both Defence counsel in this case,
1 Mr. Krgovic, and Mr. Cvijetic, on Monday and Tuesday of this week.
2 Is it right that you now live in the Bijeljina -- the town of
4 A. Yes, it is.
5 Q. And for how long have you lived there?
6 A. Since January 1, 1993, when I had my Ministry of Justice office
7 moved to Bijeljina.
8 Q. And finally, can I ask you this: Did you watch any of the other
9 witnesses, in particular Mr. Mandic, who have given evidence in this
10 case? Did you watch the testimony?
11 A. I did not follow this case at all, but I did follow Mr. Mandic's
12 testimony in the Karadzic case.
13 Q. Right. All right. Can I now very briefly also, because I know
14 that you're anxious to get away, just deal with your professional
15 background which you've described to the Office of the Prosecutor in your
16 interview. I think it's right that you started work -- well, you didn't
17 start work, but in August of 1974, were you appointed as the secretary of
18 the District Prison in Sarajevo where you remained until September 1978,
19 and then became the president of the Municipal Court in Hadzici?
20 A. For misdemeanors.
21 Q. For misdemeanors. After that, which lasted until 1986, you had
22 two mandates, were you appointed as deputy of the inter-municipality
23 district attorney, and did you remain in that position until 1992
25 A. I have a correction to make. I was appointed -- well, probably
1 in the Western world it is an unknown instance. That is the assistant
2 inter-municipality ombudsman for self-governance. We were tasked with
3 protecting the rights of workers and state-owned property in the ten
4 municipalities which did not make part of metropolitan Sarajevo.
5 Q. Well, let's come directly, please, to the outbreak of the
6 conflict in April of 1992. At that stage were you actually working?
7 A. At the time in 1992, the Law on Companies was passed, declaring
8 null and void the Law on Associated Labour which had dealt with the
9 issues I worked on as assistant ombudsman for self-management. I
10 remained as the sole person in the office, whereas the others left
11 looking for work. I was effectively out of work, and as such, I saw the
12 breakout of the conflict. In other words, that particular state body was
13 to be abolished.
14 Q. Now, did there come a time in May that you by chance met
15 Mr. Lalovic together with Mr. Mandic?
16 A. Yes. On that day, I was returning from Pale, using a roundabout
17 road via Tvrdemici, and I passed by the building of the correctional
18 penal facility Kula, and I saw the vehicle of my former colleague,
19 Laloj Radovic [as interpreted], nicknamed Ratko, and out of pure
20 curiosity I went in to ask him if he was going home. I found him
21 together with Mr. Mandic, and I heard that Mr. Mandic was named minister
22 of justice to a Ministry of Justice that was to be established and that I
23 was going to be appointed to work there, too, which was very good news,
24 because I was trying to avoid being mobilised and I was more or less in
25 hiding in Ilidza.
1 Q. And who told you that you were going to be appointed to the
2 Ministry of Justice?
3 A. There's something wrong with the question. Nobody every told me
4 that I was going to be minister, and I didn't hear that. I heard that he
5 was invited to participate in the organisation of the new Ministry of
6 Justice. Apart from Momcilo Mandic, there was nobody else appointed by
7 the Presidency. He was appointed minister of justice, and he found
8 Ratko Lalovic in his weekend cottage. They went down to Kula together,
9 and that was a mission to find new staff, to go head-hunting for the
10 future staff of the regular courts, et cetera. So there was no talk
11 about a specific job, just involvement in the establishment of the
12 justice system.
13 Q. I'm sorry, there must have been a mishearing by somebody because
14 I didn't ask whether you were going to be appointed the minister but to
15 the ministry. But in any event, who was telling you that they wanted you
16 in the ministry? Can I emphasise that. Was that Mr. Mandic or
17 Mr. Lalovic?
18 A. I found them together sitting in an office, and Ratko said to
19 Momcilo, "Here comes a man who can help us if he joins us to do this
20 work," and then both of us asked in unison, "Right. Who do you know?
21 Who else can we recruit?" That's how the conversation went. And I think
22 I went to Ilidza from there, and I joined in this effort only in end May.
23 Q. Yes. Right. Okay. Can I just urge you, Mr. Avlijas, to answer
24 my questions as shortly as possible. As I said -- as I say, if I want
25 more information, I'll ask you for it.
1 Now, we will see in various --
2 A. I'll try.
3 Q. We'll see in some of the documents that you're referred to or
4 addressed as during 1992 the deputy minister of justice. Did you ever
5 receive in 1992 a formal appointment as deputy minister of justice?
6 A. No. At the outset, it was Nenad Radovic who was appointed deputy
7 minister of justice. He was the only deputy to be elected after
8 Momcilo Mandic. But you can see from the documents that I was first
9 named assistant minister in early November 1993.
10 Q. Now, just let's see if we can get a date by which you were
11 working. You had an opportunity, I think, to read through the bundle of
12 documents that the Prosecution have, and one of them was an intercept
13 between -- an intercepted conversation between Mr. Kovac and Mr. Mandic
14 on the 26th of May. Now, I'm not interested in the contents of that
15 except for this: There's a reference to you, I think you heard or saw.
16 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, I'm not going to bother putting it up
17 on the screen. One, it's not on our 65 ter, and the only interest is for
18 the date.
19 Q. Mandic says to Kovac - and for the Defence this is on the second
20 page of the intercept - that you are already working with him. So and
21 that's the 26th of May. So does that date accord with your recollection
22 of when you started work with Mr. Mandic or with the Ministry of Justice?
23 A. If I remember well, that intercept was in July, and I got to Kula
24 in end May.
25 Q. Yes. All right. I don't think it matters too much. By the end
1 of May you were already working.
2 A. That's right. I think it was the 26th or the 28th of May, my
3 first day at work.
4 Q. Now, you said that you got to Kula at the end of May. Now, why
5 did you go to Kula? I'm sorry, first of all, I'll run that back. What
6 was Kula at the end of May 1992?
7 A. Kula was an abandoned correctional penal facility of the open
8 type, which at the beginning of the war was occupied by the
9 Territorial Defence unit of the Kasindol Battalion. I don't know what it
10 was called at that time, but when we got there, I know there was a police
11 station inside. There was some military units inside. There were tanks
12 around the compound. In one of the buildings there were even refugees
13 housed. That's how we found it. When we got there, we didn't even have
14 offices to work in.
15 Q. You say there was a police station inside. Which police station
16 was that?
17 A. I don't know how it was organised. I'm afraid to make a mistake
18 if I tell anything specific. I think it was part of the Novi Grad police
19 station or perhaps the Ilidza police station. I -- I know there was a
20 police station, and I know who the chief was. Do you -- do you need to
21 know the names of the senior staff? Their office was in the former
22 KP Dom administration, and the name was Radenko Vujicic. At the to the
23 compound of the KP Dom there was a policeman standing and checking the
24 comings and goings.
25 Q. So -- that's the next question I was going to ask you. The
1 police were actually in charge of the security at that stage, were they?
2 A. Yes. They were there for security, because you could not enter
3 the compound before showing authorisation to the policemen at the gate,
4 and there were police officers inside too. They were probably guarding
5 whatever needed to be guarded.
6 Q. Can I ask you to look, please, now, briefly at a document which
7 is 1D00-164. And that's tab 2.
8 A. Where am I supposed to see that? Oh, I see it.
9 Q. Sorry, it will come up on the screen.
10 Now this, decision --
11 MS. KORNER: If we go to the second page in both the English and
12 B/C/S. Can we go to the second page in B/C/S possibly? Thank you.
13 Q. -- was passed apparently on the 1st of May by the Presidency. So
14 before you started your job, but I think it's right that you're familiar
15 with this decision. Is that correct, Mr. Avlijas?
16 A. Absolutely. It was part of my job later to -- to be familiar
17 with this regulation.
18 Q. And it's -- if we go back, please, to the first page in each,
19 English and B/C/S. The decision was that on the establishment of the
20 penitentiary re-education institutes in the territory of the Serbian
21 Republic, and it effectively deals with, as it says, the establishment of
22 these institutions. And it says under Article 5, the current staff of
23 the penitentiary and re-educational organisation will continue to be in
24 charge of security with the assistance of the Ministry of the Interior
25 police forces. Well, the ministry -- the MUP as needed.
1 Now, was that something that had been happening before the
2 conflict in April, or was that something new, that the police should
3 assist in -- with security?
4 A. It was nothing new. As a general rule, sentence was supposed to
5 be enforced in keeping with the Law on Enforcement of Sentences that was
6 taken over from the previous law unless -- unless clashing with the
7 Constitution of Bosnia-Herzegovina. That means that the police would be
8 active in preventing riots, organised escapes. And in view of the
9 specific wartime circumstances, police assistance would be asked if there
10 occurred an external attack. But from 1992 to 1997, during my tenure,
11 police officers were never involved in the execution and the enforcement
12 of penalties and sentences.
13 Q. Right. Now, you were sent to Kula, and what was the reason that
14 you were sent to Kula?
15 A. I don't understand the question. What was the reason they sent
16 me to Kula?
17 Q. Yes.
18 A. Well, Kula was the seat of the Ministry of Justice. Mr. Mandic
19 came down from Pale and said that part of the offices of the Ministry of
20 Justice would be here on the premises of the penal correctional facility.
21 Later on, they moved us to different premises on Mount Jahorina.
22 Q. Were there any --
23 A. And Bijeljina.
24 Q. Sorry. Yes. And Bijeljina. Were there any prisoners at Kula
25 when you arrived?
1 A. We discussed yesterday the terms "detainee," and "prisoners."
2 There were very few, in fact just one detainee who was guilty of a
3 traffic violation and had nowhere else to go, but as for prisoners whom
4 we found in the part of the correctional facility where sentences were
5 served, we saw several prisoners. We were able to see them only in the
6 mornings when we had breakfast in the refectory, and then it was their
7 turn to have breakfast, but they were in the part of the facility to
8 which we had no access.
9 Q. Right. Well, can you just explain to us what in your
10 understanding is the difference between a detainee and a prisoner,
12 A. A detainee is -- sorry, a prisoner is a person taken prisoner
13 during combat and brought onto certain premises. They have nothing to do
14 with the Ministry of Justice. An inmate is a person who was sentenced by
15 a regular court. And a person in custody is a person who was remanded in
16 custody by decision of the competent court, awaiting trial. Those are
17 the three categories. The latter two categories are the exclusive --
18 fall within the exclusive purview of the judiciary.
19 Q. Right. So just so that we all understand that, a prisoner,
20 somebody taken during combat, in other words, a prisoner of war.
21 A. Yes. Yes. That is defined also by the International Law of
23 Q. And to which the Geneva Conventions apply?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And then you have an inmate, as you call it, a person who has
1 been sentenced by a court and is serving that sentence, and finally,
2 someone who is being investigated, if you like, remanded -- that has been
3 remanded in custody before a trial.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And so in Kula, when you got there, you -- you said to us a
6 moment ago -- sorry. There was somebody serving a sentence for the
7 traffic violation, and then the prisoners that you could only see in the
8 mornings, who were they? Do you mean prisoners of war?
9 A. First of all, that one person had nowhere to go, and he remained
10 to work in our workshop. He was named Slavko, and he worked as a
11 mechanic. He was no longer treated as a detainee. And these other
12 people, they were not convicts. They were prisoners. They were not
13 people who were convicted. They were taken prisoner, I suppose, in
15 Q. Did you ever make any inquiries as to what these people were
16 doing there?
17 A. Well, we asked out of normal human curiosity who are these
18 people, and we were told they were prisoners. Nobody has access to them
19 except their guards. We could see them only from a distance. We could
20 see them in the morning when they were going to have breakfast.
21 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just a small
22 objection to the transcript. This is not in the indictment, and I don't
23 see any reason to deal in such great detail with a facility that is not
24 included in the indictment.
25 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, we're going to come on to -- it's what
1 happened to these people afterwards that's the relevant -- and indeed the
2 categorisations that the witness has just been talking about.
3 JUDGE HALL: Please proceed.
4 MS. KORNER: Thank you.
5 Q. I want you to have a look now, please, at the document which is
6 number 3 in the binder, 0 -- 65 ter 01434.
7 MS. KORNER: I don't know what the scrawl on the -- that's being
8 shown on the screen. Could we have the front of not whatever that scrawl
9 is for the B/C/S.
10 JUDGE HARHOFF: Page 1 of the B/C/S.
11 MS. KORNER: Yes. Page 1. Sorry. Thanks. Right.
12 Q. Now, this is The Book of Duty Transfer for the KP facility at
13 Kula, and I think you've had a chance to go through that; is that right?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And that shows -- I think you are able to comment on a number of
16 the actual matters, but was this the book that was kept by the police at
17 the time between, if we go to the next page, the 1st of May --
18 MS. KORNER: Next page in English, please. And it's the third
19 page in B/C/S.
20 Q. And it records who was bought -- brought to the prison. Now --
21 MS. KORNER: In fact, I think we need for the entry I want -- can
22 we go to the next page in B/C/S, 2nd of May.
23 Q. This says there, taking this first entry, that on the 2nd of May,
24 1992, criminal inspectors Vaskovic and Tusevljak took from the SM in Kula
25 to Pale the following persons, and it lists those persons.
1 Do you know on what authority the apparently police inspectors
2 were taking people from Kula to Pale?
3 A. I cannot answer that question because I didn't work in internal
4 affairs. I don't know why these people were taken to Kula. I can only
5 suppose it was for interrogation. But you can see from this log that it
6 is a log of transition of duty, a log of rotations in Kula, and you can
7 see the status of the police in Kula. This log-book was kept by their
8 supervisor, Soniboj Skiljevic, and we found it when they were leaving
9 Kula in the end of July 1992 and we kept it in our archives. In fact,
10 the warden kept it in his archives, and it was found later during a
11 search conducted by SFOR, I think.
12 Q. Yes. I'll come back to how you knew all about it, but what I'm
13 just trying to get at the moment on this one entry is if these people are
14 in custody within a prison, who has to give the authority to have people
15 taken out of a prison? Who has to give the -- the order?
16 A. If we look at the decree and the instruction on the treatment of
17 inmates, you can see that the corps command bears most of the
18 responsibility. They have the greatest authorisations in the hierarchy
19 for prisoners. From our practice, I know that nobody -- no prisoner
20 could get out of Kula without a warrant from the military security. They
21 had to give their approval for exchanges, for taking prisoners out for
22 labour duty and any other thing.
23 Q. So you're assuming, are you, that these people were prisoners of
25 A. I suppose so, because they were not in custody, and they were not
1 treated as convicts. They can only be prisoners of war.
2 Q. Right. Well, let's just have a look at one other entry, please,
3 for the 3rd of May.
4 MS. KORNER: Which is on page 3 in the English, and it's on
5 page 4 in the B/C/S, I think. Five, sorry. Five. That's fine, yes,
6 thank you.
7 Q. The 3rd of May, and I appreciate all of this was before you got
8 there, the following persons were arrested by the MUP in Ilidza, and it
9 names all these people.
10 In order for the police to place somebody in custody as these
11 people apparently were because they're brought into the prison, did there
12 have to be an order from the judge?
13 A. You know, this was at a time of imminent threat of war. The
14 state of war had not yet been proclaimed. Now, employees in the police,
15 according to the Law on National Defence, if so required by the army or
16 the circumstances, were supposed to be a component in combat units with
17 the proviso that they would be subordinated to the Supreme Command. Now,
18 whether these people who were brought into the facility had been captured
19 in combat, in which case they would have been prisoners of war, or they
20 had been brought in without any warrant, perhaps, yes, the police were
21 able to hold people in custody for 45 or 72 hours, I don't remember, if
22 they were caught in the act, or perhaps these people were members of a
23 combat unit.
24 Q. Can I just ask you this finally on this document, or two
25 questions: Did you ever find any records when you took over the running
1 of the prisoners, you've told us, at the end of July, explaining why
2 these people were there, under what authority they were being kept there,
3 or anything like that?
4 A. Well, you see, when we took over the correctional penal facility
5 in end July, we found prisoners from the Hadzici municipality. They were
6 captured by military units in Hadzici, and they were kept in the sports
7 hall for a whole month before being transferred to the barracks in
8 Lukavica, and they were held for a while in the barracks where there was
9 no room for them anymore. There had been 200 people there already. And
10 on the order of the corps commander, as I later found out, they were
11 transferred to the correctional penal facility Kula, and the employees of
12 Kula were ordered to guard them and to feed them on the premises. The
13 rest of the supervision was in the hands of military security and the
14 army. Every time they were removed from the facility it had to be
15 approved by the military security and the army, equally their approval
16 was required for taking them out for any reason at all.
17 Q. Yes. I understand if the army sends people in that's one thing,
18 but what I'm talking about is where the police apparently brought these
19 people in that we saw the list of, did you find any records of whether
20 there'd been an order by the judge or what had happened to these people
21 or who these people were?
22 A. We found no records whatsoever when they left the facility. They
23 took all their documentation with them save for this single notebook
24 which was either discarded or forgotten. This is the extent of what my
25 colleagues found.
1 Q. All right. So this book was the only record they left and which
2 you found when you took over the facility at the end of the July. That's
3 right, is it?
4 A. This book was found in a dustbin.
5 Q. Right.
6 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, I don't think I want to ask any more
7 questions on that. Your Honours, may that be admitted and marked,
9 JUDGE HALL: Admitted and marked.
10 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P01633, Your Honours.
11 MS. KORNER:
12 Q. Now, after Kula, were -- sorry. Just for a moment. Did you
13 actually take part in -- during the course of June in the organisation
14 and establishment of Municipal Courts?
15 A. Municipal misdemeanour courts.
17 MS. KORNER: Can we have a look, please, at the document which --
18 well, we can't maybe. Your Honours, I've made a note, but I see it's one
19 that wasn't on our 65 ter list. So I just need to check to see whether I
20 actually need to ask the witness to have a look at it.
21 Well, Your Honours, I do. I simply want the witness to refresh
22 his memory about this, but before I do so I'll ask if there's an
23 objection. It's the document at tab 7, 10534, where there's a reference
24 to what the witness did, and that's all I want to ask him to do, but I'll
25 wait to hear if there's an objection.
1 JUDGE HALL: Is there an objection to show him the document?
2 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] No objection. We agree to it
3 being used to refresh the witness's memory.
4 MS. KORNER: Thank you. In that case, could we have up, please,
5 document 10534.
6 Q. I think the date must be an error, because we'll see a reference
7 to --
8 A. Yes. I made that note when I revisited the documents. It should
9 be the 4th of July, 1992. We can see from it that the visit to Trebinje
10 was on the 23rd, 25th, and 25th [as interpreted] of June.
11 Q. Right. Can we just -- that's exactly what I want to ask you
13 MS. KORNER: Can we go over to, please, the next page in both
14 English and B/C/S.
15 Q. Sorry, who signed that report? Before we did that, before we
16 move on, whose signature is that? Is that Mr. Mandic's?
17 A. I don't know if it's Mandic's or Nenad Radovic's. I do think
18 that Momcilo had a different signature. But it -- it could be Radovic's
19 signature. If I were to see Mr. Mandic's original signature, I'd be able
20 to compare. In -- in the other case, it would be Mr. Radovic's, who was
21 assistant minister.
22 Q. Don't worry. I don't think it's important.
23 MS. KORNER: Can we just go, please, then, quickly to the next
25 We see there that the Justice Ministry work group comprising --
1 JUDGE HALL: Ms. Korner, I remind you of the procedure to allow
2 the witness to read the document and then formulate the question.
3 MS. KORNER: All right.
4 Q. Can you just have a quick look at that.
5 A. You can go ahead with the question. I know this document by
7 Q. Okay. Right. First of all, I want to ask you, it says -- is
8 what it says correct, namely, that it was you, Mr. Branko Mandic
9 [indiscernible], and Mr. Velasevic who visited the area?
10 A. The team consisted of Predrag Nikolic, Slobodan Avlijas,
11 Branka Mandic and not Branko, and Igor Velasevic. Predrag Nikolic and
12 Slobodan Avlijas visited Herzegovina and Trebinje, whereas the other two
13 went down to Foca. They created that part of the report. Mr. Nikolic,
14 who was in charge of organising the work of regular courts and
15 prosecutors' offices had his part to do in Trebinje, and I accompanied
16 him because I was in charge of correctional facilities. I think there is
17 a separate report drafted by Mrs. Mandic and Mr. Velasevic regarding
18 Trebinje and Foca.
19 Q. First thing that I want to ask you about this: Was a court
20 actually established in Trebinje at this time, namely, June, July 1992?
21 A. Yes. Actually, it was the time when personnel was chosen. That
22 is why Predrag Nikolic was tasked with -- well, I think the decision on
23 the election of judges had been issued by that time, and it was Nikolic's
24 remit to implement it. I went to organise the work of misdemeanour
25 courts which could begin operating in that part of Herzegovina since
1 there were no more obstacles to take place. I simply went there to talk
2 with the judges to see what problems they had. The point was to have a
3 District Prison established in that area, because it was standard
4 practice to have the seat of the District Prison in the same town where
5 the District Court was, and it was for that reason that we wanted to
6 establish the misdemeanour courts in other towns we visited.
7 Q. Did you manage -- that was the next question. Did you manage to
8 establish a district prison in that town at that stage?
9 A. The District Prison in Trebinje is something that I fought for
10 throughout that period. I wanted to have it established. But only as
11 late as 1994 and 1995 we found an adequate location which was an
12 abandoned dorm that could be transformed. Together with a construction
13 company from Trebinje, we managed to restructure it. However, due to
14 local authorities' obstructions, we never managed to have it up and
15 running. It only started work -- its work in 1996. And before 1995,
16 refugees were placed in that facility by Mr. Vucurevic.
17 THE INTERPRETER: If the interpreter heard the last name
19 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Perhaps it would be useful to have
20 it clarified who Mr. Vucurevic was.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was the speaker of the
22 Municipal Assembly in Trebinje and nothing could be done without him in
23 the area.
24 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I just wanted to direct the
25 witness not to answer my interventions but to wait for the Prosecutor's
1 question, and I apologise to Madam Korner. The witness was impatient.
2 MS. KORNER: That's all right.
3 Q. Last question on Trebinje and this document. Was there any
4 prison in Trebinje during 1992 which was actually under the control of
5 the Ministry of Justice?
6 A. No.
7 Q. Right. And finally on the document, Mr. Velasevic who's referred
8 to there, can you tell us briefly, please, who was he?
9 A. Igor Velasevic was a lawyer who received his degree a year or two
10 before the war. He was the son of my late friend Slobodan Velasevic, who
11 was the centre Municipal Court president in Sarajevo. He introduced him
12 to the judiciary, but he didn't remain within the judiciary for a long
13 time. A couple of years later he went on to Switzerland and Canada.
14 He did not hold any important positions. He was simply sheltered
15 from the war in that way. For a while, his father was assistant minister
16 for the judiciary. Later on he was transferred to Trebinje and then on
17 to Podgorica.
18 Q. Sorry. It's my fault. It was a bad question. I meant what was
19 his role in the Ministry of Justice at this stage?
20 A. I couldn't define it. He was an employee of the Ministry of
21 Justice. Something like an administrative inspector of sorts. I'm not
22 really sure what he did.
23 Q. Do you know whether or not he had worked with Mr. Mandic when
24 Mr. Mandic was still part of the old Bosnian MUP?
25 A. I cannot answer that with any certainty. I can only assume that
1 he did, although I'm not sure. I really cannot say anything decidedly.
2 I do know, however, that he was brought in the Ministry of Justice by
4 Q. All right. Thank you very much.
5 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, that would seem an appropriate moment.
6 JUDGE HALL: Yes. We are about to take the break. We will
7 resume in -- in 45 minutes for our extended sitting. And the Chamber
8 notes the co-operation, notes with appreciation the co-operation of the
9 accused, who have been inconvenienced by this extended sitting. Thank
11 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.46 p.m.
12 --- On resuming at 2.35 p.m.
13 MS. KORNER:
14 Q. Mr. Avlijas, I inadvertently missed out a document that I wanted
15 to ask you about in respect of still your time at Kula.
16 MS. KORNER: Could we have up on the screen, please,
17 document P1318.40, which is at tab 5.
18 Q. This is a letter written to the -- in fact, the Ministry of
19 Internal Affairs from, if we go to the second page, we can see it's the
20 chief of SJB Novi Grad.
21 MS. KORNER: Second page in English, sorry. It's all one page in
23 Q. And as you said, you thought it was Novi Grad police station who
24 was -- that were in Kula.
25 And if we go back to the first page. The second -- the first
1 paragraph relates to problems at Kula of reception, accommodation, food,
2 hygiene, et cetera. And then it says:
3 "After coordinating with the minister of justice and SJB
4 under-secretary, on the 20th of May ... 114 persons were moved to the
5 Vrbanja bridge area and sent into the city down Sokolovic Street. This
6 group consisted of persons whose place of residence was in Gornji Kotorac
7 in Dobrinja.
8 "As they had been detained since the 12th of May ... the bureau
9 for exchange in Ilidza was informed on two occasions but did not respond
10 in time for possible exchange," and due to the objective problems, it was
11 decided that this group be sent to the aforementioned locality.
12 Now, just so that we understand, the Vrbanja bridge area and
13 Sokolovic Street, are these just areas in the area of Greater Sarajevo?
14 A. The bridge Vrbanja is in the immediate vicinity of the government
15 building. It is between the settlements of Grbavica and Skenderija. As
16 for Mico Sokolovic Street, well, that's also downtown. Vrbanja was where
17 the separation line was between the Serbian Republic of
18 Bosnia-Herzegovina at the time and the federation or what was then the
19 Territorial Defence of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
20 Q. Right. Do we understand from this letter that effectively these
21 people were just kicked out of the prison?
22 A. I'm not sure they were kicked out. There must have been an
23 assessment to the effect that they no longer needed to be kept in
24 custody. Throughout the war, all exchanges took place along separation
25 lines, and the bridge on Vrbanja was a central location where forces,
1 people moved from Republika Srpska into the federation and back. This is
2 where civilians were usually released and exchanged.
3 I am not familiar with this letter, though, and I wasn't privy to
4 these issues at the time. I don't know why they were released. I
5 suppose an agreement had been reached between the sides for their
7 Q. Under the law, can I just ask you this, Mr. Avlijas, was there
8 any power to detain civilians, in other words, people who were not
9 prisoners of war or who had been placed in custody by order of a court,
10 because they had committed an offence?
11 A. I can't say anything that would go beyond standard norms. A
12 civilian cannot be a POW unless captured during combat. Logic dictates
13 what a prisoner is under the laws of war. As for whether these were
14 civilians or not, that is something I don't know. If they were
15 civilians, we need first ascertain who had brought them to Kula in the
16 first place.
17 Q. Yes. You see, because you said a minute ago, "Throughout the war
18 all exchanges took place along separation lines. The bridge on Vrbanja
19 was a central location where forces -- people moved from Republika Srpska
20 into the federation and back. This is where civilians were usually
21 released and exchanged."
22 Was that something that happened on a regular basis, that
23 civilians were kept in custody in order to be exchanged?
24 A. I cannot decidedly say, but as far as I remember, in 1992 there
25 was a massive occurrence following some arrangements that, say, a group
1 of Serbs would go one way and another group the other way. There must
2 have been arrangements in place, and that is why Vrbanja was a point of
3 interest, irrespective of this case even. I just know it happened, but I
4 don't know who organised such events.
5 Q. Yes. Sorry, sir. All I was asking was whether, because you said
6 civilians were usually released and exchanged, was it standard practice,
7 whether right or wrong, for civilians to be kept in custody to be used
8 for exchange?
9 A. Now I understand. Vrbanja was a location where exchanges took
10 place of POWs, dead bodies. So the Vrbanja bridge and the Bratstva and
11 Jedinstva bridge. As for the group we are discussing now, that is to
12 say, the inhabitants of Donji and Gornji Kotorac who had been detained in
13 Kula, I don't know what their status was, whether they were POWs or not.
14 As far as I remember, there had been military activities in 1992.
15 Whether they were captured as civilians, that is something I don't know.
16 In any case, they were probably released as civilians.
17 I'm trying to think logically. Had there been POWs, they would
18 not have been released without any POWs being offered in exchange. That
19 is my conclusion.
20 Q. On that topic, could you have a look now, please, at a document
21 which is P427.7, tab 8.
22 Now, this is the -- dated the 6th of June. The central
23 commission of the Serbian Republic for exchange of prisoners of war,
24 detainees and bodies of the killed that are on the territory of the
25 opposite side.
1 Now, I don't know whether you saw this exact version of the
2 document, but did you see some kind of version at the time?
3 A. I saw this document for the first time when it was shown to me by
4 the investigator named Nasir, I think it was, in 1998 -- sorry, 2008,
5 2009, after the trial of Momcilo Mandic. I had my first contact with
6 Investigator Nasir and he showed me this order signed, I think, by
7 Mr. Rajko Colovic.
8 Q. Sorry, because you've got the dates slightly wrong, sir, but I'm
9 not surprised because you've had quite a number of interviews, that your
10 interview with Mr. Nasir was in -- remind myself, 2006, but --
11 A. Yes, you're right. Sorry.
12 Q. But you say that you saw it for the first time you told him that.
13 Had you seen something like -- that's why I asked you the question the
14 way I did, that you'd seen something like that published in the "Official
16 A. No.
17 Q. You didn't say that. All right. It doesn't -- I don't think I
18 really mind, but could you have a look -- could we have a look, please,
19 at page 3 in English and 2 in B/C/S.
20 Do you see the paragraph that begins:
21 "All women whose detention or deprivation of liberty is not
22 related to the war or war activities, all children, all minors up to
23 16 years of age, old and helpless persons shall be released
24 immediately ..."
25 Does that document, in your view, support what you've just been
1 saying, about there was no authority to lock up civilians and, in
2 particular, it appears women, and children, minors, and the old?
3 A. Absolutely.
4 Q. And, in fact, if you -- at the bottom of the page, and we need to
5 go to the next page in English, a copy of that document went to the --
6 the Ministry of Justice, do we see? And everybody -- all police
7 stations. But you never -- you never saw a copy of it at the time?
8 A. No.
9 Q. All right. Now, next can we look at some of the detention
10 facilities that you were sent to inspect. First of all, did --
11 MS. KORNER: Sorry, Your Honours.
12 Q. Were you sent to Vogosca?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And was that in June of 1992?
15 A. Yes, mid-June.
16 Q. And who told you to -- to go there?
17 A. Minister Mandic ordered Milenko Bileca, president of the court;
18 Milorad Panjevic, the prosecutor; and me to go and gave us specific
19 assignments, what we were supposed to do in Vogosca and Ilijas. Now, who
20 gave an order to Momcilo Mandic, I don't know. It must have been someone
21 from the government.
22 Q. And what was the specific assignment?
23 A. The specific assignment was that all those in the field should be
24 informed of the order of President Karadzic on the treatment of captured
25 persons, because all sorts of stories were making the rounds in the media
1 at the time. And my job was to hold talks with these two municipalities
2 about establishing a misdemeanours court and to find an appropriate
3 facility since a court had been set up already in Ilidza. A facility had
4 to be found for enforcement of sentences. And of course we were to
5 inspect the situation of those people who were captured.
6 Q. And what were the stories that were making the rounds?
7 A. Well, the media in Republika Srpska were blocked. You could hear
8 news from Sarajevo that there were killings in Sarajevo on a daily basis,
9 that the river was carrying bodies, all sorts of stories.
10 Q. But you said that it was -- the specific assignment was that
11 those in the field should be informed of the order of President Karadzic
12 on the treatment of captured persons. So what sort of stories were
13 circulating about the treatment of captured persons?
14 A. Well, bad stories. That's why we had to go out into this field
16 Q. Yes. I'm to going to ask you to be a little bit more specific.
17 What do you mean by "bad stories"?
18 A. That a large number of people were captured, that there were no
19 conditions to hold them, that there were mass liquidations. That's what
20 you could hear on Radio Sarajevo and read in the newspapers. Very ugly
21 things, completely contrary to the Law on Warfare and the Geneva
23 Q. And so when Mr. Mandic told you to go to Vogosca, he specifically
24 referred to these stories, did he?
25 A. We all knew about that. We all listened to the radio and read
2 Q. When you got to Vogosca, where did you go?
3 A. We had a meeting in the Sonja facility with the leaders of the
4 Crisis Staff of Vogosca, and there was also Professor Nikola Poplasen,
5 who was a commissioner appointed by the government, I think.
6 Q. At that meeting was there anybody present from the SJB in
8 A. If I can remember well, I think there was a blonde young man,
9 Blagovcanin, or something like that.
10 Q. As well as having the meeting in the Sonja, did you go to the
12 A. No.
13 Q. Did you meet anybody from the SJB called Brano Vlaco?
14 A. Brano Vlaco was at that meeting.
15 Q. Right. And what did you understand his position was?
16 A. You could see by the way he acted that he was in charge of that
17 camp in the immediate vicinity of the Sonja building, because when we
18 discussed that problem, he was the one who spoke. He was in charge of
19 security there, in charge of the guards for the captives, and that camp
20 was right next to the building where we were holding the meeting.
21 Q. Yes. Sorry. Before we get on to that, what I'm trying to
22 understand is he was in charge of that. Did you understand what position
23 he held within the SJB at -- sorry, Vogosca?
24 A. I don't know what his precise position was.
25 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'm sorry, but this
1 was a leading question. The witness never said this person was part of
2 the SJB. I think he first needs to be asked whether that person was with
3 the SJB, if the witness knows.
4 MS. KORNER: The question I asked him, because I didn't
5 understand there was any dispute about this, is did you meet anybody from
6 the SJB named Brano Vlaco, and he said Brano Vlaco was at the meeting.
7 Q. However, you understood him to be in charge of this camp, in
8 charge of security. What did you understand, how did he come to be in
9 charge of security?
10 A. I don't know. I think it was probably up to the Crisis Staff to
11 decide. Somebody must have appointed him.
12 Q. Yes. All right. That's fine. What did you understand was his
13 job apart from being in charge of this camp?
14 A. I don't know. I didn't go really into what his job was. We were
15 more interested in doing our job and issuing the orders that followed
16 from the order we received concerning the treatment of prisoners,
17 depending on the situation as we found it on the ground.
18 Q. All right. Let's --
19 A. Because our instructions related to all those present at the
21 Q. I understand that. When you first met him at the Crisis Staff
22 meeting that you attended in the restaurant Sonja or at the meeting you
23 attended at the -- the restaurant Sonja, how was he introduced to you?
24 In other words, how was it explained what he was doing there?
25 A. Well, he did the introduction himself. He said, "I'm chief of
1 security for captured persons," because we were all supposed to say why
2 we came to that meeting, and he did the same. That's what he said about
3 himself. I saw him then for the first time.
4 Q. Right. Was he in uniform or in civilian clothes?
5 A. In uniform. Which uniform I really can't remember after all this
6 time, whether it was a police uniform or a military one. Especially
7 because at that time everyone was wearing camouflage, civilians, army
8 personnel, everyone.
9 Q. Well, we may come back to that. So there you are at this
10 meeting, and you say there was this camp next door to Sonja's restaurant.
11 Now, can you describe this camp?
12 A. It used to be a German bunker that was later adapted. Originally
13 it was built to protect the railway. It was a concrete bunker whose
14 exclusive purpose was to defend the railway. I don't know if it had an
15 opening towards the sky. I don't know what it was like inside, but
16 absolutely nonexistent conditions.
17 Q. How did you come to go there? Did you ask to see it or were you
18 taken to see it or what?
19 A. Nobody took us there. We held that meeting in the Sonja
20 building, on the bank, and the bunker was only 50 metres away. So we
21 could just see across that distance what it was like. Of course, we
22 didn't go there, and if we had tried, nobody would have let us in.
23 Q. I'm sorry, I'm going to ask you a little more about that. You've
24 described it had nonexistent conditions. How do you know it had
25 nonexistent conditions, and how do you know, if you didn't go and look at
1 it, that it was a camp?
2 A. I was born in -- in the suburbs of Sarajevo, and there were seven
3 or eight bunkers in the vicinity. There was one in Blazoj, where we
4 played as children, climbed on top of it, and they are very familiar. I
5 know what kind of structure that is, and I know that it's not a
6 residential structure, so it's an inference I make.
7 Q. I'm sorry, yes, but -- but -- I'm so sorry. How do you know that
8 the bunker was being used to hold people?
9 A. You could see people walking around the bunker, coming out, and
10 they told us they were living in the bunker, and we could see for
11 ourselves people coming and going. It's the same distance as from my
12 seat to that door.
13 Q. Right. How do you know that it was being held as a -- that
14 people were being held in it?
15 A. Well, they told us. They told us as soon as we came. We asked,
16 "Where are these prisoners? Such and such stories are circulating." And
17 they said, "There they in the bunker." Because when we came to give them
18 instructions, we asked them, "Do you have prisoners of war?" "Where are
19 they?" "There and there."
20 Q. Did you go and look at them?
21 A. We didn't go in.
22 Q. No, did you go look -- did the bunker have a roof on it?
23 A. It's a flat slab. I don't know if it had an opening looking at
24 the sky. I'm not sure. I think it had. Now, according to the design,
25 if I remember well these bunkers from my youth that I saw, I think there
1 was an opening in the middle.
2 Q. Did you say anything about that bunker to anybody who was present
3 at that meeting at Sonja?
4 A. Of course. The president of the court and I reacted the same.
5 "Are you insane? Why are you keeping people there? The war won't last
6 forever. Somebody will have to answer for this. There are Geneva
7 Conventions and other conventions that have to be observed." We told
8 them it was completely inappropriate and unlawful.
9 Q. And what was the reaction when you said this?
10 A. Well, they said, "We'll have to sort this problem out," and in
11 the meantime I looked for a different facility that could serve as a
12 prison. They showed me a building, two or three storeys high, and then I
13 ask the president of the court, since he chaired the meeting, whether
14 there was any problem to transfer the prisoners there, and -- and the
15 president of the court and I said, "You have to deal with it. You are
16 keeping these people there. You make this decision, and now you want us
17 to sort it out for you."
18 Q. Right. Did anybody threaten you whilst you were there?
19 A. Well, this man came by -- at that time everybody was wearing rank
20 insignia. I thought at first he was a colonel or something. And Bjelica
21 and I both reacted rather explosively to the fact that these people were
22 kept there. And then this man said, "If you are so sorry for them, would
23 you like to join them?" I thought at first he was an officer, and then I
24 later found out he was a village scoundrel who just pinned those rank
25 insignia on him. He had been in prison before.
1 Q. You told us your job was to inspect these places because there
2 were all these ugly rumours floating around about the treatment of
3 prisoners. Given that you had been told that people were being held in a
4 bunker, which you said was completely inappropriate, why didn't you go
5 and have a look at the prisoners and fulfil your -- your duty there?
6 A. I didn't dare. I didn't dare, especially when this guy came
7 looking like an officer. How could I know who was in charge of what, who
8 was doing what? We were newcomers there, and then only during the
9 meeting we found certain things out. This came as a reaction before the
10 official meeting even started.
11 Q. Did you ask what sort of people were being held there, whether
12 they were civilians or people who were properly being captured in combat?
13 A. We were told those were prisoners of war captured in battles in
14 Vogosca, Svrake, Semizovac and so on.
15 Q. All right. Could you help us, please, with a couple of
16 photographs just to make sure we're all talking about the same place.
17 Could you have a look, please, at 03 -- 03419.69, which is at tab 38.1.
18 Now, are you able to tell us, looking at this aerial photograph,
19 whereabouts the bunker was and Sonja's restaurant?
20 A. This is the fork --
21 Q. We'll give you a pen. Sorry, Mr. Avlijas. We'll give you a pen
22 so you can mark the screen.
23 A. This is the exchange connecting the road from Rajlovac. It goes
24 towards Semizovac. And there is a connection to Vogosca. Sonja would be
25 here in the vicinity, and the bunker close by.
1 Q. Right. Okay. Can you mark -- could you just -- I tell you what,
2 put 1 for where the bunker is -- was -- is.
3 A. Here, somewhere here.
4 Q. I think we just --
5 A. If I got it right, yes.
6 Q. Right. Are you marking Sonja's restaurant or the bunker?
7 A. Restaurant Sonja is here, marked, and the bunker is here below.
8 Q. All right.
9 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, can that be marked -- admitted and
10 marked as exhibit -- as an exhibit.
11 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just a moment.
12 Perhaps it would be good to erase this and give the witness a chance to
13 make a better marking and to put numbers 1 and 2.
14 JUDGE HALL: I agree.
15 MS. KORNER:
16 Q. Just put the number 1, please, for where Sonja's restaurant is or
18 A. [Marks]
19 Q. Right. And the bunker --
20 A. I don't see it, but it should be here somewhere.
21 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, and that may -- may that be admitted
22 and marked.
23 JUDGE HALL: Admitted and marked.
24 MS. KORNER: And finally, quickly -- oh, P, sorry, yes. No. The
25 Registrar's moved down the road.
1 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P1634, Your Honours.
2 MS. KORNER:
3 Q. And could you now have, very quickly, a look at one -- a
4 photograph that's already been exhibited, P1510. Tab 38.2.
5 This photograph was taken quite recently, Mr. Avlijas, but is
6 that the bunker that you're talking about? With a roof on, which it
7 didn't have at the time.
8 A. No. No, that's not what I saw.
9 Q. Well, that's good. All right. I appreciate -- the structure you
10 saw didn't have a roof on, did it?
11 A. No. No, it didn't.
12 Q. Okay. Without the roof, would that be the structure?
13 A. If you took the roof off, it would.
14 Q. Okay. All right. I don't think I can proceed with this any
16 Now, you say that on this visit you went to Vogosca and then to
17 Ilijas. Where did you go in -- oh, I'm sorry, no. Before we leave
18 Vogosca, you say you talked about -- you were shown a house where
19 prisoners could be moved to. Is that right?
20 A. Correct. In a settlement called Svrake.
21 Q. And do you remember what the house was called or did you
22 subsequently discover what was house was called?
23 A. I learned later it was called Planeja's house.
24 THE INTERPRETER: Planjo's house, interpreter's correction.
25 MS. KORNER: Planjo's house. Correct.
1 Q. When you went to Planjo's house, who took you there?
2 A. Some people from Vogosca. Brano Vlaco, perhaps, was with them.
3 In any case, there were two or three local men who knew the place well.
4 Q. And were you -- did you ask how many people were in custody who
5 were going to be moved, how many people were being kept in the bunker who
6 were going to be moved to Planjo's house?
7 A. I don't remember whether I asked or not. Perhaps I did; perhaps
8 not. I can't remember.
9 Q. Well, without knowing how many people were being kept, detained,
10 how were you to know whether Planjo's house was suitable?
11 A. When I saw that they were keeping people in a bunker that's two
12 or three times smaller than Planjo's house, which was two-, three-storeys
13 house, I thought Planjo's house must be adequate. This place was rather
14 remote, not really prone to shelling. It satisfied other requirements.
15 I was more interested in a facility appropriate for enforcing sentences,
16 sentences meted out by basic court 2 in Ilidza, and covered Ilidza
17 Vogosca, Hadzici, and Ilijas. That was our basic requirement for finding
18 a proper facility, and then they had to scout for a building and that was
19 their part of the job.
20 Q. Now, you've already explained to us that there were only really
21 three categories of prisoner, but did you make any attempt to find out
22 who had ordered the detention of these people?
23 A. The Crisis Staff did. I knew that in Vogosca the Crisis Staff
24 operated just like in all other municipalities, and it was the Crisis
25 Staff who went out looking for facilities or commanders of units would do
1 it, but most likely it was the Crisis Staff who were in charge of the
2 detention facilities. They were in charge at the time. I suppose they
3 did it most likely together with the army because they couldn't do it on
4 their own.
5 Q. I'm sorry, you misunderstand. Not to -- not the facilities. But
6 who had actually ordered the detention of the people that were now being
7 held in the bunker, were going to be held in the --
8 A. The decision. The decision -- I precisely answered your
9 question. Who made the decision to take people prisoner and to put them
10 there? Was that your question?
11 Q. Yes.
12 A. The Crisis Staff did, and the army command most likely. That's
13 what I suppose. I mean, logically analysing how things took place on the
14 ground, I suppose that's how it was. But I never saw any document to
15 that effect. Nobody ever showed me that in any meeting.
16 Q. Did you say -- that's what I'm trying to establish, Mr. Avlijas.
17 Did you ever ask at this meeting which were attended by members of the
18 Crisis Staff, by Mr. Vlaco, by somebody else from the SJB as well, who
19 has actually ordered that these people are being detained?
20 A. I can't remember exactly. There were three of us, and the main
21 role was played by Milenko Bjelica, the court president. Now, whether he
22 put that question to them, whether he made that request, I can't remember
23 that now. The answer that I gave you is based on how it happened in
24 practice. Most likely it was the Crisis Staff and the Tactical Group
25 command that were in charge of that issue.
1 Q. All right.
2 A. And by your leave let me clarify, because when we asked where the
3 people, where the prisoners were from, they told us that those were
4 people who had been taken prisoner in areas where there were armed
5 conflicts, in Semizovac, Svrake settlement and up there in the area next
6 to Srednja, and also in Vogosca. The residence gravitate -- the
7 settlements gravitating towards Vogosca, Vogosca. They told us that
8 those people had been taken prisoner during combat. That's what they
9 told us. We didn't check whether those people were really combatants or
10 not, but it was the corps commander who was in charge of making that
12 Q. I suppose the obvious question, Mr. Avlijas, is did you feel it
13 was any part of your responsibility to establish whether people were held
14 illegally in these conditions?
15 A. No. Our task was to see whether there were any prisoners and
16 where they were kept. Now, as for the procedure our the legality and
17 lawfulness of that issue, this is something that came under the
18 jurisdiction of the army.
19 Q. I'm sorry, but why did it come under the jurisdiction of the army
20 unless they were -- happened to be captured in combat, as combatants?
21 A. We were told that those people had been taken prisoner in combat,
22 and we told them if these are prisoners of war, then our task is this and
23 this, to inform you of the decree of the president of the republic and to
24 inform you of the instruction of the minister of defence, Mr. Subotic, as
25 to how prisoners of war should be treated if you are keeping them
1 imprisoned in your area, and we brought them Official Gazettes,
2 et cetera. We also informed them about the situation that we found
4 I reacted not only as a member of that body, of that commission,
5 but as a normal human being, somebody who abides by the law. People are
6 not animals. Provisions of the laws of war need to be abided by. People
7 are people and have to be treated as such.
8 Q. But if these people in that bunker were prisoners of war captured
9 by the army, who would be dealt with by the army, did they come under the
10 jurisdiction of the minister of justice?
11 A. No, they didn't. The team that went out into the field was
12 supposed to act on behalf of the government and Ministry of Defence and
13 inform the Crisis Staff and the people who were in charge as to what were
14 the instructions about what they were supposed it do on the ground. It
15 was the government, not the Ministry of Defence that issued those
16 regulations. And we had to inform people about how they needed to act.
17 That was the main purpose of our mission. We did not interfere into the
18 army affairs.
19 Q. And nobody at any stage ever told you, nor did you discover that,
20 in fact, these people who were being held there were civilians?
21 A. No. Nobody. They claimed that those people were prisoners of
22 war who had been captured during combat, and I told you in which areas.
23 All the leading people of the Crisis Staff were present. President of
24 the municipality, Mr. Koprica; president of the Executive Board
25 Mr. Stanisic; Mr. Poplasen, the War Commissioner for Vogosca. And there
1 were other representatives, I think representatives of the army, police
2 and whoever else was supposed to be present was present. I even think
3 that a representative of the army was present but I'm not sure. I can't
5 Q. All right. Let's just have a look, please, at another document,
6 particularly you mentioned Dr. Poplasen.
7 MS. KORNER: Could we have a look, please, at 1D00-095, tab 9.
8 Q. Now, this is dated the 26th of June. So was that after the
9 meeting that you had with Dr. Poplasen and the rest of -- of the people
10 that you've mentioned?
11 A. Yes, correct. This was after our meeting, I think, and I
12 mentioned this many times. I think that it could have been on the
13 11th or 12th of June. So this letter came after the meeting and our --
14 after we expressed our suggestions.
15 Q. Right. Now, if this was all a military matter, POWs and all the
16 rest of it, do you know why in this letter Mr. Poplasen was saying:
17 "As the prison in Vogosca who is not military is considered
18 illegal by our legal regulations, this prison is to be immediately
19 transformed into a department of penitentiary and correctional facility
20 in Butmir or Pale ..."?
21 A. Professor Poplasen has a degree in political science. Most
22 likely he didn't know these matters and did not have an advisor to
23 explain it to him. He mixed up two different institutions here. We came
24 looking for a facility for an investigative prison, and that was the
25 purpose of our mission, and he probably mixed up apples and oranges if he
1 mixed up a camp with an investigative prison. So that's not what we were
2 looking for. We were looking for a separate prison facility so that
3 people could be housed in appropriate conditions.
4 Q. All right. So your take on this is he's made a mistake. All
5 right. Let's move to -- you went to Ilijas that same --
6 A. Absolutely, yes. Absolutely. This is not what we discussed, and
7 this is not what we informed our superiors about.
8 Q. So you never said to Mr. Poplasen or anybody else, "This is a
9 completely illegal prison"?
10 A. No. We had no authority to discuss the creation of collection
11 facilities or camps or refugee camps or whatever you want to call them.
12 Our authority encompassed only prisoners of war. And if we found any
13 prisoners of war, we would tell those in charge that they were duty-bound
14 to supply normal conditions for them in compliance with the laws of war
15 and the Geneva Conventions, without going into how they had established
16 those facilities and so on, because that came under the jurisdiction of
17 the Tactical Group or corps command together with the Crisis Staff.
18 Q. All right. Now, sorry, there's one last question I keep saying
19 we're moving to Ilijas and I always forget one last question. Planjo's
20 house that you went to have a look at, did it -- did it -- was it, in
21 fact, established as a prison facility?
22 A. Yes. A remand prison was established, and the inmates were
23 transferred there. Now, as to the fate of the remand prison, I really
24 couldn't tell you because shortly thereafter I travelled a lot. I spent
25 a month and a half in Banja Luka dealing with exchanges, and then I moved
1 on to Bijeljina. Now, what happened there, whether the basic court from
2 Ilidza sent prisoners there or not, you should check with the presidents
3 of courts who were in charge of remand prison.
4 Q. Yes. Did the Ministry of Justice take this over from the police
5 or whoever it was that were guarding the facility at the bunker once they
6 were moved to Planjo's house?
7 A. All I know is that the municipality issued a decision regarding
8 this abandoned property, that that facility was allocated for the
9 purposes of a remand prison. I think that that's how it was. Later on
10 they established an investigative department, and they appointed the
11 person to head it and other people were assigned to various other
12 positions. The intention was to have an investigative department
13 there -- or, rather, a department serving as a remand prison, whereas
14 others were to be sent to Butmir.
15 Q. Right. All I want to know is are you able to tell us when the
16 Ministry of Justice took over the control of Planjo's house?
17 A. It was in July, sometime there. I'm not sure. I did not deal
18 with this issue later on.
19 Q. Now, let's deal with Ilijas. That same day that you visited
20 Vogosca, did you also go to Ilijas?
21 A. Yes. I also attended the meeting in Ilijas. Bjelica and I went.
22 Milorad Panjevic didn't go. We had a meeting with the Crisis Staff.
23 The -- Ratko Adzic was the president of the Crisis Staff and the
24 municipality and he and his associates attended the meeting.
25 Q. Did you see any detention facilities in Ilijas?
1 A. Yes. They also informed us about it, about the fact that they
2 had prisoners there. Given the experience from Vogosca, we asked to see
3 where they kept those people, and we went to the site and we saw that
4 they kept those people in a warehouse of sorts. As far as I remember, it
5 was close to the railroad between Ilijas and Podlugovi.
6 Q. Right. I'll show you some photographs in a moment but -- which
7 you've seen already but I just want to know this, you said: "Given the
8 experience in Vogosca, we asked where they kept the people." What do you
9 mean by "given the experience"? I mean discovering that they had
10 prisoners in Vogosca?
11 A. I believe we spoke at cross-purposes. Having in mind what we had
12 seen in Vogosca, since we came because of the same issue, we wanted to
13 inform them better of the decree and instructions, and then we asked to
14 see the prisoners.
15 Q. But that's what I mean. Why -- why ask to see them in Ilijas but
16 not in Vogosca?
17 A. In Vogosca we were in front of the facility itself. It was a
18 terrible sight, and I was terrified of the person who threatened me.
19 There wasn't much to see, though, people walking in front of the
20 facility, and I know what kind of building that is. There are no
21 conditions there. What conditions could you have in, say, a German
22 bunker who had openings 30 X 30 centimetres in size? It was too much to
23 see. The very idea of keeping people there, you must arrive at the -- at
24 the conclusion that there isn't much there for anyone, and that was my
1 Q. Did you -- you asked to see the prisoners at this warehouse.
2 Were you taken to see the prisoners in the warehouse?
3 A. Yes, we were. People spoke to me. Since I was the public
4 defender for that municipality, I knew some of them. We talked. They
5 were in the warehouse, and I remember some bars on the windows. We were
6 on the opposite side. One doesn't need much to imagine the mental
7 framework of a prisoner. They grasp at straws. They wanted to know
8 whether something could be done about the conditions.
9 I -- the only thing I could tell them was that there were hints
10 at exchanges, that they could be included, and the media was reported on
11 the need to have a lot of people exchanged.
12 That was the extent of my communication with them, and I
13 suggested to them to ask for better conditions.
14 Q. So you actually knew some of these people, and they knew you?
15 A. Some of them probably recognised me. They knew me, but I can't
16 say I knew them. Most people -- most workers in Ilijas knew me because I
17 used to visit the factories there, and I was there sometimes ten times a
18 month, and they all knew who the public defender was.
19 Q. Yes, all right. Were these civilians, or were they people who
20 had been captured in fighting with the Serbian Army?
21 A. It was the same in Ilijas and Vogosca. I was told that there
22 were -- there was combat in the area of Ljesevo, just outside Podlugovi,
23 and apparently that population was captured during combat. I don't know
24 whether it was true or not. I was told that they had all been captured
25 in combat.
1 Q. And how many people, roughly, do you think were in this
3 A. I really can't recall off the cuff. I only know it was packed.
4 Q. Did you ever ask any of the people who'd come up to speak to you,
5 "Is it true that you were fighting against the -- the Republika Srpska
7 A. I didn't. I didn't discuss that topic with them. People asked
8 for my help for the most part, trying to see whether they could get any
9 better conditions. We only exchanged a few sentences. There were no
10 long discussions. Perhaps I can clarify. At the time there were
11 paramilitaries going around, and one needed to take care of one's own
12 life. You never knew who was moving about such facilities.
13 Q. So do you mean, sir, that you were worried that there might be
14 paramilitaries listening to what you were saying?
15 A. Absolutely so. Not everybody tried to reason the way we did.
16 Q. All right. Can we just have a look, please, at the photographs
17 very quickly, which are at 03419.67, at tab 36.
18 Is that the warehouse we're talking about?
19 A. No. This is the railway station in Podlugovi.
20 Q. Right.
21 A. And just across the street there is a nice cafe there called
23 Q. All right. So you identify that as the railway station, do you?
24 And which --
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And which -- at where? Sorry, yes. I've got myself slightly
2 confused now.
3 A. Can I suggest something? Yesterday during the proofing you
4 showed me the bunker. You must have that photograph.
5 Q. Yes, I do, but --
6 A. Because the picture you showed me for Vogosca does not tally.
7 Q. Yes. All right. I may have got -- can we look just for a
8 moment, please, at the next photograph in the binder, which is 03419.68.
9 Right. Now, can you tell us, sir, if we can see the warehouse in
10 that photograph at all?
11 A. It's not very clear. If this is the railway -- is it?
12 Q. Unfortunately, I can't -- I don't think I'm supposed to give
13 evidence about that. I tell you what, sir, don't worry. I'll give up on
14 photographs at the moment and come back to them tomorrow when I've
15 slightly sorted this out a bit more clearly.
16 Right. Don't worry, sir. We'll have a look at them tomorrow
17 morning rather than us wasting time on it now.
18 Now, after that visit to Vogosca and Ilijas, did you make a
19 report to Mr. Mandic on what you had found?
20 A. Milenko Bjelica was the head of the team. He was in charge of
21 submitting the reports, and I don't know what he did in the end. He was
22 the court president.
23 Q. Yes, but you worked with Mr. Mandic. Did you either speak to him
24 or put anything in writing to him about what -- the conditions that you
25 had found during this trip?
1 A. I believed Milenko Bjelica would inform the minister because that
2 was his task. I did inform them orally, though, when we briefed them on
3 the situation in the field. However, Bjelica was the head of the team
4 and he was duty-bound to write a report.
5 Q. Yes. I'm sorry, when you say "I did inform them orally," who do
6 you mean by "them"?
7 A. Momcilo Mandic, the minister.
8 Q. Did you ever see the report that Mr. Bjelica had put in to
9 Mr. Mandic?
10 A. I have never seen it.
11 Q. Was it not standard practice then for a report to be circulated
12 amongst the members of the inspectorate, of the people who had been doing
13 the inspecting, before it went in?
14 A. In an orderly state that would be the case, but at the time we
15 had nothing. I'm afraid I cannot comment.
16 Q. All right. You told Mr. Mandic orally about what you'd found.
17 Did he express any view as to what needed to be done or what he was going
18 to do in respect of that report you'd put in?
19 A. He probably reported it to the person who had ordered us to do
20 so, and it was probably asked that people from Vogosca and elsewhere be
21 moved to other place where there were better conditions. Shortly after
22 our visit, those people were transferred from those bad facilities.
23 Q. Now, you've told us that the -- the -- the bunker in Vogosca,
24 which had so appalled you, that the man in charge was Mr. Vlaco. Now,
25 can you have a look, please, at document which is 143 -- sorry, 1D00-339,
1 tab 14.
2 Now, I'm afraid it's a very bad copy of the letter.
3 A. I know what it's about.
4 Q. Right. It's dated the 21st of July, 1992, and it's a decision,
5 and it's Ministry of Justice with a signature. Whose signature is that?
6 A. Mine.
7 Q. Right. And it's a -- it's appointing Mr. -- is says: "Blaco,"
8 but I think it's meant to be Vlaco, "from Vogosca shall be appointed
9 warden of the detention" --
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. That is -- it is Vlaco, is it?
12 A. Yes, Vlaco. So v.
13 Q. "Shall be appointed warden of detention department of the penal
14 and correctional facility Butmir ... in the absence of the warden,
15 commander of the guard shall perform the duties," blah, blah, blah.
16 Given that he'd been in charge of this appalling place, why did
17 you sign an appointment for him to be the warden of Butmir?
18 A. We should start from the fact that we first needed to decide that
19 a detention department be established in Vogosca. That would be under
20 the competence of the court in Ilidza. Once the detention department was
21 established, we had to set up personnel in charge of it. It is true that
22 Branko Vlaco was at the bunker. However, this was not my decision. I
23 only signed on what minister had agreed with the Crisis Staff, because
24 the Crisis Staff had proposed him. This decision was needed for
25 Branko Vlaco not to be mobilised to the front lines but to work for the
1 Ministry of Justice.
2 How did the signing of this document come about? Because
3 Minister Mandic was not in Butmir where the ministry was. He attended a
4 government session. Mr. Branko Vlaco came for supplies from Vogosca, and
5 one needed to traverse 100-plus kilometres over hills in order to reach
6 Kula. He came there. The minister was absent but he needed the decision
7 and he needed it upon his return to have permits issued for his work
8 obligation. The arrangement had been made with the minister, and I only
9 had to put this in writing, and it was in keeping with all previous
10 decisions. The minister told me that I should sign on his behalf so that
11 Branko Vlaco would not go back empty-handed. Otherwise I was not in
12 charge of personnel policy. I only had to follow through in terms of
14 Q. Yes, but -- but --
15 A. I apologise. Perhaps I can add. I could have neither approved
16 or denied issuing such a decision.
17 Q. But -- yes. Well, let's go back to that. It's not your
18 decision, it's Mr. Mandic's. But had you -- you told us you gave
19 Mr. Mandic a report of your visit, an oral report of your visit to
20 Vogosca. Did you explain that this appalling bunker place was under the
21 control -- the man in charge was this man Vlaco?
22 A. He was probably better known than myself. Everyone knew who
23 Vlaco was. He was in contact with the Crisis Staff. Personnel policy
24 went along the following lines: It was basically the SR --
25 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could please the witness
1 slow down and be asked to repeat his answer.
2 MS. KORNER: Well, I'm really sorry, because I heard the words
3 SDS. All right.
4 Q. Sorry, Mr. Avlijas, you'll have to slow down a bit because the
5 interpreter's lost it. Can you just tell us again what you said,
6 personnel policy went along the following lines. Could you just say that
7 again slowly?
8 A. Personnel policy in the field was in the hands of the Crisis
9 Staff and the Serb Democratic Party.
10 Q. Right.
11 A. It's a well-known fact.
12 Q. Mr. -- yeah. Mr. Vlaco was, in fact, from Vogosca. Butmir,
13 which is Kula prison - is that right? - was in Ilidza?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. So which Crisis Staff said that they wanted Mr. Vlaco to be
16 appointed the warden of Butmir?
17 A. Of Vogosca.
18 Q. And why should Vogosca be able to influence Mr. Mandic as to who
19 was appointed the warden of the prison in Butmir?
20 A. Something needs to be cleared up here. The correctional
21 department established in Vogosca was an outpost. It was a part of the
22 organisational structure of the penal correctional facility in Butmir.
23 It was not an independent institution. It was merely a part of a larger
24 institution which due to the conditions at the time was forced to
25 establish such an outpost because there were very poor communication
1 links between the court itself and the rest of the locations.
2 Q. And finally on this topic, you signed this for Mr. Mandic. Was
3 there ever an occasion if you signed a document, an official document,
4 that you would do so without authorisation from Mr. Mandic?
5 A. There was no way. Every document had to be registered. The
6 stamp of the Ministry of Justice was with the secretary of Mr. Mandic.
7 He -- the secretary was Mr. Mandic's right hand. There was basically no
8 way, even theoretically, that such a thing would occur.
9 Q. All right. Now, sticking for one last -- the last document, I
10 think, for today, could you have a look, please, at document - sorry -
12 This is a letter from -- it doesn't -- I don't -- it may have
13 been a draft but it doesn't appear to have any signature on it, from
14 Mr. Mandic to Vogosca, 10th of August:
15 "Regarding your request for engagement of detainees in works, we
16 hereby inform you that we are in agreement that detainees be temporarily
17 engaged in construction and other works."
18 Now, there is some handwriting on there. Are you able to -- the
19 translator couldn't read it, but are you able to read it or recognise the
21 A. "Note: A discussion held with the minister on the 10th of April,
22 1992. Approval obtained." Signed by "Vlaco."
23 Q. Right. And you --
24 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction, 10 August 1992.
25 MS. KORNER:
1 Q. And do you recognise -- well, do you recognise Mr. Vlaco's
3 A. No. I never communicated with him by way of correspondence.
4 Therefore, I don't know what his signature looks like.
5 Q. Okay. Mr. Vlaco, by August, was in charge -- or had received his
6 appointment as warden of the correctional facility; is that right?
7 A. As warden of the correctional investigative department in
8 Vogosca. That is correct.
9 Q. And therefore, if it was under the Ministry of Justice, it dealt
10 with civilian prisoners, not prisoners of war. And when I say
11 "civilian," I mean not people who were prisoners of war.
12 A. I cannot tell you what the category of those prisoners was. I
13 was explained that these people were captured during combat. It is a
14 fact, though, that they were handed over for care by the command of the
15 1st Sarajevo-Romanija Corps to the KP Dom. They had no facilities for
16 them, and they said, "Well, it's up to you to guard them, to feed them."
17 And the rest took place following army's approval. I don't know what
18 Mandic had to do with this, and I'm afraid I cannot tell you anything
19 further regarding this document.
20 Q. Sorry, how -- how do you know to which type of prisoner this
21 document refers?
22 A. I do know because there was no prison there. There were no
23 convicts there. These could only have been prisoners. Under the Law on
24 Criminal Procedure, any contact between convicts and the outside world is
25 forbidden, and they cannot be used for any labour.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the last
2 sentence of his answer and slow down.
3 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, I note the time. Can I just -- I want
4 to try and clarify this with the witness, but if Your Honours think we
5 ought to stop, then we'll stop.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: The interpreters asked for the witness to repeat
7 the last sentence, Ms. Korner.
8 MS. KORNER: Right.
9 Q. You said: "Under the Law of Criminal Procedure, any contact
10 between convicts" that should be, not conflicts, "and the outside world
11 is forbidden, and they cannot be used for any labour."
12 Did you say something else after that?
13 A. Detainees.
14 Q. Detainees what?
15 A. There's a difference between detainees and convicts or those held
16 in custody and convicts.
17 Q. However, what I'm trying to understand is this: If, as you're
18 suggesting, because prisoners could not be put to labour, these are
19 prisoners of war, why is Mr. Mandic involved in this at all, because he
20 had no authority over prisoners of war?
21 A. It is not clear to me either. He had no authority. The
22 prisoners in Vogosca were not supposed to be used for anything in the
23 absence of the approval of the Tactical Group commander. I don't know
24 what his authority was.
25 As for the minister of justice in this part of work, he held no
1 sway in this particular area.
2 Q. However, if the people who were being held in this facility of
3 which Mr. Vlaco was the warden were not, in fact, prisoners of war but
4 people who, however they had come to be detained, were civilians, then
5 Mr. Mandic would have had authority, wouldn't he?
6 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Apologies, Your Honour. I think
7 the whole line of questioning is leading.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Can I answer, please?
9 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, this is the last question I'm going to
10 ask. He wants to answer. Perhaps he should answer.
11 JUDGE HALL: Yes, and then we take the adjournment.
12 MS. KORNER: Yep.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] None of us dealt with the category
14 of prisoners, people who were captured. And I'm trying to explain the
15 three categories of people who were detained through unfortunate
16 circumstances in places where they shouldn't have been, premises of the
17 correctional penal facility. Those people were captured. And I agree,
18 if they were civilians, they shouldn't have been at the camp. If they
19 were prisoners, they probably did belong in a camp. However, Mr. Mandic,
20 even if these were civilians, had absolutely no jurisdiction over them
21 because they were treated by mistake as POWs. Mr. Mandic was able to
22 have supervision only if convicts were involved, and then our department
23 of criminal sentences would have had authority to supervise. And we
24 would have had authority to inspect the constitutional provisions and
25 whether they were observed according to the rules on the enforcement of
2 Now, these people who were found there had been captured, and it
3 needed to be clarified whether they had been captured as civilians or as
4 combatants. I have no information about that. I was unable to find out.
5 MS. KORNER: Thank you.
6 JUDGE HALL: So we take the adjournment until tomorrow.
7 Mr. Avlijas, I would remind you that inasmuch as you have been
8 sworn as a witness, that you cannot have any communication with counsel
9 from either side in this case, and in such conversations as you may have
10 with anyone outside of the courtroom, you cannot discuss your testimony.
11 So we resume in this courtroom at 9.00 tomorrow morning. Thank
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
14 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 4.07 p.m.,
15 to be reconvened on Friday, the 8th day
16 of October, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.