1 Friday, 8 October 2010
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at of 9.04 a.m.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning
6 everybody in and around the courtroom. This is case IT-08-91-T, the
7 Prosecutor versus Mico Stanisic and Stojan Zupljanin.
8 [The witness takes the stand]
9 JUDGE HALL: Thank you, Mr. Registrar. Good morning to everyone.
10 May we have the appearances, please.
11 MS. KORNER: Good morning, Your Honours. Joanna Korner and
12 Crispian Smith and Selma Sakic for the Prosecution. Sorry. Sorry about
14 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. On
15 behalf of the Stanisic Defence team, Slobodan Cvijetic, Tatjana Savic,
16 and Ms. Deirdre Montgomery.
17 MR. KRGOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Dragan Krgovic and
18 Daniella Sinobad appearing for Zupljanin Defence.
19 JUDGE HALL: I remind witness, before Ms. Korner resumes her
20 examination-in-chief, that he's still on his oath.
21 Yes, Ms. Korner.
22 THE WITNESS: SLOBODAN AVLIJAS [Resumed]
23 [Witness answered through interpreter]
24 MS. KORNER: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Examination by Ms. Korner: [Continued]
1 Q. Mr. Avlijas, I regret that I want to go back and read the
2 transcript over night to ask you about just one matter in respect again
3 of the bunker that you spoke about yesterday that was in Vogosca.
4 You told the Court that you saw -- you realised that people were
5 being held there apart from being told that, because you saw people
6 walking round the bunker coming out. "They told us they were living in
7 the bunker." That's at page 15590.
8 What people?
9 A. I didn't know those people. I just saw a group of people in
10 front of the entrance to the bunker. It was a nice day, and this was
11 very close to this building where we were meeting. And also, nobody was
12 trying to hide this. They told us these people were prisoners.
13 Q. Right. So the people you saw outside the bunker were prisoners.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And did you discover what ethnicity the prisoners were?
16 A. No, I did not discover, but we were told that these were
17 Muslims -- or, rather, Bosniaks from the settlements around Vogosca.
18 Q. Right. Thank you. And second matter, the people that you saw in
19 the warehouse in -- in Ilijas, were they in uniform or were they in
20 civilian clothes?
21 A. I haven't seen anyone wearing a uniform. I cannot tell you
22 things that are not true. They were all in civilian clothes.
23 Q. Right. I want to move very quickly through, please, the rest of
24 the matters I want to ask you about because we have a limited amount of
25 time. If I could stop misplacing my note, we might get on a bit quicker.
1 Ah. Right.
2 Generally speaking, is this correct as you told us yesterday,
3 that the MO -- the Ministry of Justice, the ministry, took over detention
4 facilities from the end of July or beginning of August?
5 A. Penal and correctional institution. That's part of the Ministry
6 of Justice was the institution that took over. And by the decision of
7 the Presidency there was a reorganisation of the penal and correctional
8 facilities, and Butmir where these people were inmates was also placed
9 under this institution.
10 Q. Yes. I'm talking about the date, please. Was that about the end
11 of July, beginning of August?
12 A. In late July. You can see from the notebook. The moment the
13 police left Kula the security was taken over by the employees of the KP
14 Dom Kula.
15 Q. I'm not just talking about Kula. I'm talking about all the other
16 facilities, detention facilities, that you inspected or dealt with. Were
17 they taken over by the ministry of justice at the end of July, beginning
18 of August?
19 A. In this case we're discussing only Kula. Only Kula was involved.
20 Q. Right. We're going to look at some of the documents that you
21 dealt with. We've already looked at some. Who was providing security
22 for all the places in which people were being kept until July/August?
23 Was it the Ministry of Justice or was it some other organisation?
24 A. Workers of the Ministry of Justice were not securing anyone in
25 any penal or correctional facility. I don't know about Foca, whether
1 there was the army or the former employees of this facility. I cannot
2 tell you that.
3 Q. All right. Well, let's -- perhaps we'll get at this quicker
4 through some of the documents. Can you have a look, please, at document
5 number P165 at tab 22.
6 Right. Is that a report that you and a gentleman named Goran
7 Saric made on yet another inspection of detention facilities?
8 A. Yes. This is a report from Bileca that we drafted on the basis
9 of a decision reached by the government to tour the area. We went to the
10 barracks in Bileca, Trebinje, Gacko, and a pupils' home in Bileca and
11 Gacko. We were told that there were no camps. Colonel Cigarac [phoen]
12 in the barracks in Bileca -- should I slow down?
13 Q. No. I'd like you to deal, please, just with my questions rather
14 than volunteering information, because we've got, as I say, limited time.
15 All I want to ask you about this report is to whom did you
16 deliver that report?
17 A. Thank you.
18 Q. Who did you deliver the report to?
19 A. To the minister.
20 Q. In Bileca, you spoke to Mr. Vujovic, the head of the SJB there,
21 and he told you that 140 Muslims were accommodated in their premises. Do
22 you mean the SJB? By "their premises."
23 A. It was in the students dorm and these people who were isolated
24 were secured by the police employees.
25 Q. Right. These people apparently had committed, from your report,
1 no crime but were being kept there for their own safety. That's what you
2 recorded. That's what the police told you.
3 A. Yes, that's correct. If I may provide a broader explanation in
4 two sentences.
5 Q. All right.
6 A. At the time, the Neretva River valley, Mostar area, people were
7 leaving that area. When I say "people," I mean the reserve of forces,
8 paramilitaries and so on, and they all came to Bileca. Mr. Vujovic, who
9 was the chief of the municipality, believed that many problems can come
10 out of this situation, so they isolated the people and kept them in this
11 students dorm. Women were being food for these people. And after I
12 came -- it was the police that was providing security for them.
13 Q. Right. Okay. All I'm concerned about is this: If as you
14 reported the SJB was telling you these people were there for their own
15 safety, why did you recommend that the people who were over 60 should be
16 released? If you look at the end of the second paragraph -- third
18 A. When we went out, we received instructions that once we came to a
19 camp, and we didn't know that we were going to find such a situation,
20 people who were detained, prisoners of war who were detained, that there
21 shouldn't be in detention people over 60 years of age, children, and
22 women. That was the instruction I received then. That's how I acted.
23 Q. Yes, but these, according to your report as to what this SJB
24 chief told you, these weren't prisoners at all. These were people being
25 kept for their own safety. So why should you, in that case, recommend
1 that the people over 60 should be released into the dangers of this
2 particular area?
3 A. It is possible that I drafted this just basing it according to
4 the instruction and that maybe I haven't found any people who were over
5 60 or women or children. I didn't mean to suggest that anyone should be
6 released, especially when I was told that -- what kind of threats they're
7 facing, that the mosque in the town was destroyed, and that was done by
8 the paramilitaries. I believe that what they did was a smart move.
9 Q. Right. Just read, would you, please, to yourself the last
10 sentence of paragraph 3 in your report. Bottom of the page.
11 Now, does that or does not that say --
12 A. Yes, yes, yes. I can see. It is possible that I said this. I
13 don't know why. Probably just keeping to what I was given in the
14 instruction. And you're right. Why would they be released in a
15 situation like this?
16 Q. Because can I put this to you, Mr. Avlijas, that you knew and the
17 police knew that these people were being illegally held simply because
18 they were Muslims. Isn't that why you made the recommendation at the
20 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this was a leading
21 question. The witness is being told what to answer.
22 JUDGE HALL: I wouldn't have thought it was a leading question,
23 Mr. Cvijetic, but did I think that it is -- struck me as something that
24 should be reserved for submissions at the end. The report is there. The
25 witness has been invited on three occasions to comment on it, and we have
1 his answer. The rest is for inference and argument.
2 MS. KORNER: Your Honour's right to that extent, except I thought
3 perhaps maybe just once the witness might like to tell us really what
4 happened. All right. I'll move on.
5 Q. So can we move now, please, to the next, which is a report, again
6 I think from you -- sorry, it's document, please -- oh, sorry, before I
7 leave that last document, can I just check something.
8 No. Yes. Let's move to the next report, please, then. It's
9 document 65 ter 2825, tab 25.
10 If we go to the second page, just so we can see the signature.
11 Is that your signature?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. To whom did you give this report? If we go back to the first
15 A. To the Ministry of justice, the minister.
16 Q. Yes. I see. I think it's rather an odd translation of the
17 ministry of justice for some reason.
18 Right. Was this a further inspection of various detention
19 facilities, this time in the area of the autonomous region?
20 A. No. This is about a meeting of the representatives of the
21 Banja Luka region from all various structures. Milan Trbojevic,
22 Mr. Milan Trbojevic, vice-president or -- of the government, Dragan
23 Kalinic who was minister of health, and I also think although I didn't
24 mention in the report minister of defence Mr. Subotic attended. When we
25 look at the attendees it would have been logical for Mr. Mandic, the
1 minister to be present, but he sent me instead. I attended the meeting,
2 and the topics listed here were discussed at this meeting.
3 Q. Right. You -- you -- what you say in this, that there were
4 representatives of the army. Was that General Gvero?
5 A. No. General Gvero was not in attendance. I think it was one of
6 the generals from the Krajina Corps who attended, or some of the
7 high-ranking officer. I can't remember. It was a long time ago. I
8 didn't write it down.
9 Q. All right. Representatives of the internal affairs bodies.
10 That's the police. Was Stojan Zupljanin there?
11 A. Yes. Mr. Zupljanin was there. Simo Drljaca as well. Basic and
12 District prosecutors, president of the District and Basic Court, mayor of
13 Banja Luka, the late Dr. Predrag Radic, Vukic, as far as I remember, and
14 some other people attended. The hall was packed.
15 Q. Right. During the course of this meeting did the topic of the
16 killings which had taken place in the area of Koricanske Stijene come up?
17 A. Yes, and that resulted in a troublesome discussion initiated by
18 late Mayor Radic who was very angry, who said that this throws bad light
19 on the area of Banja Luka, and the army joined in. There was also
20 present the chief of the SJB of Prijedor whose policemen committed the
21 terrible crime. Then the members of the army told us about what the
22 location looked like, that it was a cliff. They said also that they went
23 to the site. Mr. Zupljanin said that he had formed a team, that the
24 on-site investigation had been carried out, that a criminal report had
25 been submitted, and if I'm not mistaken, I think Mr. Puvacic who was the
1 Basic prosecutor was asked to speak. He was asked how far have they come
2 with the investigation, but the conclusion was that this whole situation
3 had to be fully cleared up.
4 Q. Right. You say that --
5 MR. KRGOVIC: I'm sorry, Ms. Korner. There's something which is
6 wrongly translated. It's at page 9, line 24. Can the witness be asked
7 to repeat last sentence. It was recorded. Mr. Puvacic who was the Basic
8 prosecutor was asked to it speak.
9 MS. KORNER: Would Your Honours give me one minute.
10 [Prosecution counsel confer]
11 MS. KORNER: Right. I'm told there's agreement about this,
12 Your Honours.
13 Q. Sir, could you repeat your sentence in respect of what you said
14 about Mr. Puvacic, the prosecutor, because we think there's a wrong
16 A. Mr. Stojan Zupljanin informed those present that the on-site
17 investigation had been carried out at Koricanske Stijene, that CSB
18 Banja Luka team went there, that they drafted a criminal report. Now, I
19 cannot remember whether it included the names of the perpetrators or
20 whether it was an unknown perpetrator report, and that this report was
21 submitted to Mr. Puvacic, the Basic prosecutor. So they turned to
22 Mr. Puvacic and asked him what has been done until that moment about this
24 Q. Thank you. Now, sir, you -- you said that -- well, actually, I
25 suppose I ought to stick to that for a moment. What did Mr. Puvacic say
1 in reply?
2 A. That investigation was ongoing. A standard reply that the
3 procedure is underway, and that allegedly they had problems because the
4 perpetrators were at large somewhere. To the best of my recollection. I
5 do have some recollection of it, because this was a rather heavy case.
6 Q. Was it Mr. Puvacic who said that the perpetrators were at large?
7 Did Mr. Drljaca say anything about the perpetrators?
8 A. It was a difficult situation, because these were employees of the
9 Prijedor SJB. I -- this is not my field of expertise, and I can't
10 discuss this much, but I had this feeling that the whole meeting was
11 looking at Mr. Drljaca. He was supposed to tell why. I think Drljaca
12 may have said that he had tried to arrest the perpetrators and that one
13 or two of them were at large, that they fled.
14 Q. Right. But nobody at that meeting, from what you say, was in any
15 doubt that the people who had committed this crime were police officers?
16 A. No, there was no doubt about that. That was clearly stated. Not
17 at any time there was any doubt about someone else being involved and not
18 the policemen.
19 Q. Right. Did Mr. Zupljanin say anything to Mr. Drljaca?
20 A. I can't remember, but I do think there was some conflict between
21 the two of them on one occasion during the meeting, because one was
22 saying, "These are your policemen. It's impossible that they've just
24 I know that Simo Drljaca wasn't really humble at the time. I
25 can't remember his response, but the whole situation was very charged.
1 Q. Right. Yes. Thank you.
2 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, may this document be admitted and
3 marked, please.
4 JUDGE HALL: Admitted and marked.
5 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit -- as Exhibit P1635, Your Honours.
6 MS. KORNER: Right.
7 Q. Could we now move, please, to your major report, which is already
8 an exhibit. It's at tab 29. P393. Thank you.
9 Right. I know that you're very familiar with this report,
10 Mr. Avlijas, as indeed I think are the Chamber now. 27th of October.
11 Whose signature is that on the front page of the letter to the Presidency
12 and the various officials?
13 A. Of Minister Mandic.
14 Q. This was your report, though, to Mr. Mandic. Was it Mr. Mandic
15 who had instructed you to carry out this inspection?
16 A. Yes. At a meeting one day prior to the time I went out to do a
17 tour, I think it was based on some instruction by the government, I was
18 told to tour all the locations around Prijedor. You cannot find it
19 written in there, but I think there was some pressure after a meeting in
20 Geneva where representative I think maybe of the Red Cross, Sadako Ogata,
21 who at that meeting in Geneva had said that there was some terrible
22 things happening on the ground, that Trnopolje camp was re-established,
23 and I was tasked to tour a number of places and draft a report about my
25 Q. All right. Now, I just want to deal with a few matters in this
1 report. When you went to Vlasenica, you started -- can we go, sorry, to
2 the next page in both English and B/C/S.
3 You started your report by saying:
4 "According to information from the IRC, there is allegedly a
5 collection camp at this location, in the immediate vicinity of the town,
6 in a place called Luke."
7 Do you now know what that camp was actually called?
8 A. I later found out it was called Susica, but I wasn't sure then
9 whether I've confused the terms Luke and Susica. And during the proofing
10 and also during the interviews, I asked to be shown air photos, and, yes,
11 that's the camp. I toured this camp, and what you can see here, I could
12 say that, yes, that was Susica based on the lay out of the terrain and
13 the facilities there.
14 Q. Yes.
15 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, if there's any dispute about this I'll
16 show the witness the photographs but it takes up time to look at. Is
17 there any dispute about what he actually saw was Susica, because if so,
18 I'll get him to identify the photographs.
19 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] It is not a contentious issue.
20 MS. KORNER: Mr. Krgovic?
21 MR. KRGOVIC: No.
22 MS. KORNER: Thank you.
23 JUDGE HALL: And in the context of time, you have ten minutes
24 remaining, Ms. Korner.
25 MS. KORNER: I know. That's why I'm speeding up.
1 Q. Now, you also -- can I just deal with one matter. Yes. You
2 talked about Prijedor in item 4. That's in the -- sorry, the one, two --
3 fourth page in English and the third page in B/C/S.
4 And -- actually, I think we need to go, sorry, to the next page
5 in the B/C/S, because the part I want to refer to ... There.
6 You talk about in the second paragraph of your report on Prijedor
7 that there was a meeting at Prijedor during the course of your inspection
8 with the representatives of the International Red Cross and other people.
9 I just want to put to you and see if you can remember this. Was one of
10 the other people there Dr. Stakic?
11 A. Yes. Dr. Stakic was, then the late Dr. Kovacevic, the late
12 Simo Drljaca. Simo Srdac [phoen] who was the president of the Red Cross
13 and a deputy in the RS Assembly, and I believe the SDS president there --
14 was there. On our behalf there was a Dr. Aleksic who was assistant
15 minister of health, and Mr. Beat or Beat, I believe, who was also in
16 attendance from the ICRC.
17 Q. Yes, well, I think we'll discover that's Dr. Beat Schweizer. And
18 was there, in fact, also present a representative of the -- the local
19 newspaper "Kozarski Vjesnik"?
20 A. I think there was a journalist there. Later on I found out that
21 an article was published.
22 Q. Yes. Did you read the article at the time?
23 A. I did not. It was shown it me later, and I don't think it
24 accurately reflects the truth of the matter, but that's my personal view.
25 Q. Right. Next can we quickly move to Sanski Most, please.
1 MS. KORNER: Sorry. Next page in English. Same page in B/C/S.
2 Q. What you record in your report was "the information there is a
3 camp in Sanski Most is not correct. In that area only four people were
4 taken prisoner and transferred to the Manjaca camp ..." Who gave you the
5 information that only four people had been taken prisoner during the
6 course of that?
7 A. A security officer. I contacted them for the most part whenever
8 there was a danger in terms of access due to combat. They provided me
9 such information, for example, for Sanski Most and Kotor Varos, I
10 believe, because I don't go there myself.
11 Q. Who do you mean by a security officer?
12 A. From the Banja Luka Corps. Those who were in charge of that
13 particular area. The Krajina Corps, that is.
14 Q. I'm sorry, are you saying that you never met anybody in Sanski
16 A. No, I never met anybody in Sanski Most or in Kotor Varos, because
17 I think there is a reference to Kotor Varos as well.
18 Q. Right. So you never made any attempt to -- to query or see
19 whether the security officer was telling you the truth?
20 A. There was no reason for me to disbelieve him. I had no time, and
21 I really couldn't move about. Hence, I couldn't go out on my own in
22 those areas where there were -- there was combat. I took his word for
23 it, especially because he said that all of those taken prisoner were
24 transferred to Manjaca. Later on we had a meeting in Banja Luka in
25 August where it was said that all persons from the area of Krajina were
1 located at Manjaca, and this is what I based my conclusion on and I
2 trusted what I was told.
3 Q. This report was after the Banja Luka meeting in August, but
4 anyhow can we move very quickly finally to Ilidza and Hadzici. That's in
5 the --
6 MR. KRGOVIC: Ms. Korner, Ms. Korner, there is -- again it is
7 problem with this translation. The word "later" starts with -- doesn't
8 appear from his answer.
9 MS. KORNER: All right.
10 Q. You did go, however, to Ilidza, didn't you, and Hadzici?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And you saw -- and you described in your report that there was a
13 makeshift prison for prisoners of war Ilidza, which is organised,
14 supervised by the public security station. It's in the secondary school
15 in Ilidza. And also there was a sports facility at Hadzici, also with
16 security being provided by the SJB there.
17 Were you allowed by the police to inspect either of those two
19 A. Let's start with Hadzici. In Hadzici, there were Bosniak
20 prisoners who had been taken prisoner back in May 1992 by the army. They
21 were transferred to Kula where they stayed until September or October
22 1992, when an all-for-all exchange was exchanged between -- for the camps
23 at Tarcin and Kula.
24 Q. No, no, no, no, no. Can we -- I'm sorry, I don't think we've got
25 it up on the screen, actually, which may be why you're going off like
1 this. Can we have the next page, I think, in English. No. Ten is on
2 the screen. No. All right. Go back, please. Yes -- no, that's it.
4 Look, you said in your report that 90 people are accommodated in
5 the Hadzici sports centre. So --
6 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I believe the witness should be
7 allowed to complete his sentence, and I believe he may even provide an
8 answer to the question Ms. Korner was about to put.
9 MS. KORNER: The witness is talking about people who were
10 transferred to Kula until September. I'm asking him about the 90
11 prisoners of war that he records in his -- in his report.
12 Q. Now, are you saying these are one and the same people, sir?
13 A. That is precisely what I wanted to say. These were the same
14 people, because the exchange failed, because they couldn't be transferred
15 elsewhere. The easiest thing was to move them to Hadzici. The group
16 who -- that was in charge of it didn't do their job properly. They
17 returned them to Hadzici, and they wanted to basically use these people
18 as leverage to secure an exchange with Tarcin. They were secured by the
19 workers of the police. The conditions were very bad, and those in charge
20 of guarding them could hardly wait for the people to leave. Those people
21 had been viciously mistreated back in June in Hadzici by paramilitaries.
22 A lot of my friends were arrested who told me about all of that that had
23 taken place at Kula. That is the same group.
24 Q. All right. You're -- you're saying this is the same group that
25 were arrested in May, transferred to Kula, whenever it was. When did
1 they get beaten up by paramilitaries in June then?
2 A. Not in June, in May. In May. Before they were transferred to
3 Kula they had gone through horrific torture by paramilitaries in Hadzici.
4 Q. Okay. So you saw these people in October in Hadzici.
5 A. No. Those same people who were returned to Hadzici are the
6 people I saw when they were in June and July at Kula. They could move
7 freely about. Since I had lived in Hadzici for 17 years, I had a lot of
8 really good friends who were detained there. I --
9 Q. [Overlapping speakers]
10 A. -- asked the people who stood guard there to it allow me to see
11 some of my friends and then those friends told me all about the
12 mistreatment and torture.
13 Q. They told you all about their mistreatment and torture where?
14 A. In the gym when they were arrested in May, before their transfer
15 to Kula.
16 Q. And these are totally different from the -- the people from
17 Hadzici that you spoke to when you were in Ilijas all those months ago --
18 or, rather, the same people.
19 A. Ilijas is a separate story. I was there on official business,
20 and that's why people knew me there. As for Hadzici, I had lived there
21 for 17 years. I was the court president there for eight years, and I was
22 the secretary of the health centre there for a number of years. I had
23 lots of friends there who found themselves in this misfortunate
25 Q. Can we now try and get some order into this. The people from
1 Hadzici that you spoke to when you were there in Ilijas in June are --
2 A. Not in Ilijas.
3 Q. You told us yesterday, sir, you spoke to people from Hadzici who
4 you knew when you were there in June. Now, are these people, the 90
5 prisoners of war described in your report, a different group? That's all
6 I want. Yes or no?
7 A. No. Ilijas is a separate group of people, and in Hadzici there
8 was a different group of people.
9 Q. Thank you. Were you on this occasion in October allowed by the
10 police to see these people in Hadzici? Yes or no?
11 A. The regular policemen couldn't stand me, and the police commander
12 had to intervene for me to be allowed to visit those people and see what
13 the situation was, and the conditions were not met. They did not meet
14 the standards required by the Geneva Conventions.
15 Q. Right. Were you allowed in Ilidza to enter the secondary school
16 which was being guarded by the police?
17 A. At Ilidza, I was not lucky enough to enter. They were guarded by
18 some policemen who did not grant me access. And I asked to see those
19 senior to them, but none of them were to be found in the police station.
20 I only knew that there was a high school there, that there was a single
21 toilet and a number of classrooms, and that these were not the conditions
22 in which prisoners should be held. I used that as the basis of my
24 Q. Right. And finally in the conclusion to your report, you said:
25 "In the cases --"
1 Can we look at the -- yes, the last page in B/C/S, please.
2 "In the cases of Zvornik, Hadzici, and Ilidza, we see that the
3 Public Security Stations keep people in custody without any authorisation
4 or justification in law because they have the authority to keep people in
5 custody for no longer than three days."
6 That was your opinion, was it?
7 A. Yes, it was. I followed common sense and the law. If the
8 minister of the interior is included or a police station, the Law on
9 Criminal Procedure prescribes the authority of the police and limits it
10 to being able to hold someone in custody for three days. Whether there
11 were any other conditions in place, that is something I didn't go into,
12 but I'm simply sharing my view with you as a legal professional.
13 Q. As a result of that -- actually, I think this is already an
14 exhibit, so I don't need to show you that. Yes.
15 Finally -- all right. Now, finally, Mr. Avlijas, in the places
16 that you visited of detention during this period between the end of May
17 and October 1992, who was providing the security for the detainees?
18 A. It depended on the location. Somewhere it was the army, and
19 elsewhere it was the police. In Zvornik, when I visited, by sheer
20 circumstance it was the police who had to secure some 40-plus prisoners,
21 because they had simply been given these people by the army. They came
22 from a number of different reception centres and held together. In
23 Hadzici it was the police, in Ilidza the police, in Bileca the police,
24 because it's all in my report. I can't deny that. As for the reasons
25 for it, that is something I cannot provide you with an answer to.
1 Q. No. And even before the place -- the other places that you
2 visited and described to the Court, namely in Ilidza, in Ilija -- sorry,
3 in Ilijas, in Vogosca, and other places, on each occasion was it the
4 police who were providing the security?
5 A. I think there was a combination of the police and army. In
6 Vogosca it was Brano Vlaco who had been a policeman before the war.
7 Everyone knew that. And it was logical for me to conclude that the
8 police stood guard there. In Ilijas I think it was the army, although
9 I'm not certain. In Vogosca it was Brano Vlaco. That is certain. He
10 was at the meeting, and we already ascertained that he was a member of
11 the police and that he used his reserve force to provide guard duty
13 Q. And finally, I'm sorry to say that's the second finally, you told
14 us that you were refused access by the police in Ilidza to the facility.
15 Did you complain? This doesn't appear in your report. Did you tell
16 anybody you had been refused access?
17 A. Well, in the report and when I submitted it to the minister I
18 told him that I couldn't enter and that the chief of the police Mr. Kovac
19 wasn't there. I was certain he would have allowed me to. I told him,
20 minister, you know what the school in Hadzici is like, and I think -- you
21 have a letter of Mr. Mandic to the municipalities in evidence. I
22 suggested to him that it would be a wise thing to do to have those people
23 removed for danger of retaliation by paramilitaries or revenge, and
24 indeed it was followed through later on.
25 Q. Yes. Thank you, Mr. Avlijas.
1 A. You're welcome.
2 JUDGE HALL: Yes Mr. Cvijetic.
3 Cross-examination by Mr. Cvijetic:
4 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Avlijas.
5 A. Good morning.
6 Q. What you said at the end about Vogosca and Brano Vlaco what
7 period did you have in mind when you say you think he had been a
9 A. Before the war he had been a policeman, and at the beginning of
10 the war he was an employee of the police station in Vogosca.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note: Could the counsel and
12 witness pause between questions and answers. Thank you.
13 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Did you know that he was -- we are being asked to pause. Let me
15 check what's in the transcript.
16 I asked you whether you knew he had been pensioned off before the
18 A. I hear that for the first time now.
19 Q. Did you know that the local Crisis Staff decided to engage him on
20 these tasks? And I believe we have been discussing the issue of the
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Did you know that the local Crisis Staff engaged him?
24 A. I didn't discuss it, but I believe so, because nothing could be
25 done without the Crisis Staff.
1 Q. Very well. I will show you only two documents then.
2 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have document --
3 please bear with me. 1D04-3059, tab 12.
4 Your Honours, we are still awaiting translation of this document,
5 but since it mainly consists of first and last names it won't be
6 difficult to draw inferences. Perhaps the interpreters can follow, and
7 the witness may read out the title of the document. I will do it:
8 "A list of professional employees of the Serb station -- police
9 station in Vogosca," and this is a payroll for May 1992.
10 Q. Mr. Avlijas, have a close look at the list. When you are done
11 with this page, we can move on.
12 A. I have read it.
13 Q. Let us go to the last page of the document then. Have you had
14 occasion to read it?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. On this list of employees of the Vogosca police station we do not
17 find Brano Vlaco; correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I seek to tender
20 this document, but it should be MFI'd pending its translation.
21 MS. KORNER: Okay. There are -- I thought that Mr. Cvijetic
22 might be trying to do this when I saw the documents yesterday. There are
23 two things. Firstly, he never asked the witness, for obvious reasons,
24 whether he'd seen it before because I think the answer would have been
1 Secondly, and I'm sure this is inadvertent and that Mr. Cvijetic
2 doesn't intend to mislead either the witness or the Court, but tendered
3 as an exhibit, Exhibit P1506, not so long ago by another witness who
4 dealt with the events in Vogosca is a list of the police in Vogosca,
5 active and reserve police, dated the 28th of May, and shown at number 63
6 of that list is Brano Vlaco, which is why I said yesterday I have not
7 appreciated that there was any dispute, because it went in without
8 objection and without cross-examination that Mr. Vlaco was, in fact, a
9 police officer. So for the -- I don't see how it can go in through that
10 witness, let alone without a translation. But I don't see the purpose
11 either at the moment.
12 JUDGE HALL: The other thing that occurs to me is that apart from
13 the -- what I would call positive document to which Ms. Korner has -- has
14 referred us, I'm not sure what -- even if it had been translated and all
15 of that, the usefulness of this document would be, which is a -- which
16 merely shows the absence of a name. So I suppose an argument could be
17 constructed on that, but on the face of it, I wouldn't have thought it
18 was it relevant or certainly of very much assistance, the mere absence of
19 something on a document.
20 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the document speaks
21 for itself, and to me it's useful as a reference for -- frame of
22 reference for the questions I'm about to ask the witness.
23 We had a witness --
24 MS. KORNER: I'm sorry, I really need to know what the position
25 is. Is the suggestion that's going to be made now, and it's not been
1 made when a witness was here who could have dealt with it, that Mr. Brano
2 Vlaco was not a member of the Vogosca police in May of 1992, and if so,
3 that should be made absolutely clear and should have been made
5 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic, we agree with the position taken by
6 Ms. Korner on this. Could we have your response to that.
7 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this was used with
8 the witness who had testified before this Trial Chamber, and based on
9 two -- on another two documents, we established -- well, I cannot say it
10 in front of the witness before I show him a document.
11 Three documents have been used from which we concluded what the
12 witness has just said. To my question whether the Crisis Staff was in a
13 position to install him in that position, he answered affirmatively, and
14 I want to show that using three documents which have already been used
15 with witnesses.
16 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic, before we wander too far -- too far
17 afield from the very narrow issue, the point that Ms. Korner has raised
18 and has asked for an answer, and we agree that she is entitled to press
19 you on this, is that having regard to the evidence that has been led, is
20 it the position of the Defence of Stanisic that Brano Vlaco was not a
21 member of the police at the relevant time? Because as Ms. Korner has
22 said, having regard to the position heretofore taken, they were entitled
23 to continue on the line that this was not in dispute, and we're merely
24 calling on -- on you to -- to answer Ms. Korner's question so we all know
25 where we're going in respect of that narrow issue.
1 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have just been
2 informed that the document I referred to is also on the 65 ter list. So
3 I'm not talking about a new document, and it has been used with previous
4 witnesses, only it has been marked differently.
5 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic, that is not the question. I'll try
6 again. Is it the position of the Defence of Stanisic that Brano Vlaco
7 was not a police officer in May of 1992 in Vogosca? Yes or no?
8 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Precisely, Your Honour. And it
9 follows from everything I have said, and I want to show that using three
10 documents, but I'm not being allowed to. It would be easiest for me to
11 say yes or no. The Crisis Staff appointed him because he retired before
12 the war, and he wasn't an employee of the police station. We even have
13 an exhibit which you admitted.
14 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Cvijetic, you're not being prevented from
15 challenging this if it is, in fact, your case. All we are saying is that
16 for the sake of clarity, having regard to what appeared to be your
17 position, and when I say "appeared," appeared to the Chamber and would
18 have appeared to the Prosecution, before you opened this line of question
19 that you were not making this challenge. Is it your position that you
20 are? Yes or no?
21 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I don't understand why it appeared
22 to you that I do not challenge it. Of course I do challenge it. I think
23 it is clear from what has been established through this witness so far --
24 JUDGE HALL: Now we know where you're headed. Please proceed
25 Mr. Cvijetic.
1 MS. KORNER: Can I just make one point. Firstly, Your Honour,
2 Mr. Cvijetic must stop giving evidence. We've been saying this over and
3 over again saying that the Crisis Staff appointed him.
4 Secondly, if it is their case, as it was, as it now is they say,
5 for obvious reasons that he was not a member of the police, then may I
6 make it clear there should have been cross-examination of the witness who
7 actually dealt with the document which, as I say, shows Mr. Brano Vlaco,
8 number 63, on the list of active and reserve of police officers. And
9 obviously now that we know, and it's been a thing we've been saying all
10 along, it is important that when the Defence have a positive case to put,
11 it should be put properly.
12 JUDGE HALL: And we believe we've already ruled on this. Their
13 failure to do so would have -- the consequences would be inevitable. So
14 I don't know with respect, Ms. Korner, that you need exercise yourself
15 about this.
16 MR. CVIJETIC: [Microphone not activated]
17 THE INTERPRETER: The microphone is not activated.
18 JUDGE HALL: So now that we -- now that we understand what your
19 position is, the document would be marked for identification pending
20 its -- sorry.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have clarified
23 the situation. The list that I have just shown the witness has been
24 admitted as a Prosecution exhibit on the occasion of the examination of a
25 protected witness. I can give the reference numbers. P1504, and there's
1 also P1519. And this is where the situation was clarified.
2 Mr. Brano Vlaco was employed by the police station Vogosca only
3 in November once he was --
4 MS. KORNER: This is complete nonsense. At the moment when
5 Mr. Cvijetic stopped giving evidence, as far as this document is
6 concerned, it's -- if he wants it in, once he's got his translation,
7 although this witness can say absolutely nothing about it, we're not
8 raising an objection.
9 This -- this stream-of-consciousness giving of evidence should
11 JUDGE HALL: Well, the ruling of the Chamber is -- by majority is
12 the document may not be admitted even marked for identification through
13 this witness. I am the dissentient in this case.
14 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Very well. I will show the next
15 document, 1D04-3601. We're also waiting for a translation to be made.
16 Here. It's titled "List of Reserve Police Officers Who Worked for the
17 SJB of Vogosca in May 1992."
18 Q. Mr. Avlijas, you can read it, and if you have read the first
19 page, let us turn to the second one.
20 A. I have.
21 Q. Mr. Avlijas --
22 A. I'm still reading it. Go ahead.
23 Q. I will put the position of the Defence to you. Mr. Brano Vlaco
24 was not a member of the police station of Vogosca in May 1992. If you
25 remember you said yesterday that he was introduced to you by people of
1 the Crisis Staff and that he was appointed by the Crisis Staff to do
2 these jobs, and you repeated as much today, if I remember well.
3 After what you have seen now, can you confirm your position and
4 the conclusion you drew?
5 MS. KORNER: Look, I'm sorry. Please -- I'm sorry, Mr. Avlijas.
6 You cannot mislead the Court, Mr. Cvijetic. If you want to put
7 that to him -- sorry. I shouldn't be addressing him directly,
8 Your Honours.
9 Mr. Cvijetic should, if he wants to put this proposition, is
10 obliged to put before him other documents which contradict the position,
11 but he cannot say, "On what you have seen so far, do you change your
12 position that Mr. Vlaco was a police officer," because it's misleading.
13 He must show him document already as I point out Exhibit 1506, dated the
14 28th of May, Vogosca police station, role of active and reserve police
16 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Very well. Let us show both the
17 Prosecution's and the Defence Exhibit P1504.
18 JUDGE HALL: It seems to me, Mr. Cvijetic, that you're faced
19 with a -- I don't know if it's an impossible task, but how useful is it
20 going to be to show two contradictory documents to a witness and ask the
21 witness his conclusion? His conclusion's neither here nor there. It's a
22 matter for the Trial Chamber at the end of the day. So is there any
23 point in persisting down this path that you have -- that you are taking?
24 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] There is no contradiction. The
25 document which was admitted is identical to the one I have just -- I have
1 just shown. They are identical.
2 JUDGE HARHOFF: Is it -- is it documents P1504 or P1506 that we
3 need to look at? I'm unsure about it.
4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I did say to Mr. Cvijetic 1504. It's
5 1506, dated the 28th of May. And if one goes to the third page in
6 English, number 63.
7 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
8 THE INTERPRETER: Could all unused microphones please be switched
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: So then if -- if we have 1504 without that name
11 on it and a 1506 with that name on it, there is the contradiction
12 Judge Hall was referring to, Mr. Cvijetic, not a contradiction between
13 1504 and the one you failed to tender.
14 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we're in possession
15 of the payrolls for this police station for all months, May, June, July,
16 August, up until November. We are in possession of all those rolls. Of
17 course, this witness -- or they cannot be tendered through this witness.
18 And Mr. Vlaco cannot be found on those rolls.
19 We have settled this with the protected witness, and he said to
20 us when Mr. Brano Vlaco started working at the police station.
21 Therefore, I will limit myself to a specific question with this witness.
22 Q. How was Mr. Brano Vlaco introduced to you on that day,
23 Mr. Avlijas, as being who and in which position, and who introduced him?
24 A. At that meeting where we were, which we attended, Brano Vlaco was
25 one of those present, and it was said that he -- he was in charge of
1 providing security to prisoners of war, and he was wearing a camouflage
2 uniform from which I concluded that he was a police officer. Later on I
3 found out privately that he was a police officer, and I never heard until
4 now that he was -- he retired before the war.
5 Q. So that camouflage uniform was a police uniform rather than
6 military uniform?
7 A. Well, I couldn't be sure at the time. People wore all sorts of
9 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat his last
10 sentence, and Defence counsel and the witness really should not overlap.
11 JUDGE HARHOFF: Yes. Hold on a minute, Mr. Cvijetic, because the
12 transcript reads that the witness's testimony goes as follows: "Later
13 on I found out privately that he was a police officer," and I just wonder
14 if that was what the witness said.
15 Secondly, my question to the witness would be if the witness
16 understood at the time that Mr. Vlaco was representing the SJB in
17 Vogosca. Was that your understanding of -- of the situation when you
18 actually met Mr. Vlaco?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I may have been mistaken, but
20 that's how I understood it. I must be honest about it. I found out only
21 today that Brano Vlaco retired before the war, but I know that he was
22 saying that he was a police officer at the time.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Witness, did you -- how did you find out
24 today that Mr. Vlaco was -- was retired before the war? Where did you
25 get that information from today?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the -- from Defence counsel,
2 Mr. Cvijetic. He asked me whether I knew that he had retired.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] But that's the first time I heard
5 of it.
6 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, that's the exact reason why my
7 complaint about the form of questions that are put. It's counsel giving
8 evidence which the witness is accepting when he doesn't know one way or
9 the other.
10 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it's time for a
11 break. May I continue after the break then?
12 JUDGE HALL: Yes. Thank you.
13 --- Recess taken at 10.25 a.m.
14 --- On resuming at 10.49 a.m.
15 JUDGE HALL: Whenever you're ready you may continue,
16 Mr. Cvijetic.
17 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mr. Avlijas, yesterday when you spoke about -- about the way
19 Mr. Vlaco was received as a ministry employee, you said that it was all
20 done between the minister and Mr. Vlaco; is that correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. So it wasn't between the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of
24 A. You're right. There were no memos between them. It was based on
25 the communications between the Vogosca Crisis Staff and the Ministry of
2 Q. Yesterday, on page 15587, when you were asked who attended this
3 meeting in Vogosca and when you were asked who was there representing
4 Vogosca SJB, you said:
5 "I don't remember, but I think there was a young man, blonde,
7 Do you remember saying that?
8 A. Yes, Blagovcanin, maybe Maksimovic. Maybe there were two of them
9 but I do remember the blonde man, Blagovcanin, but Maksimovic may have
10 been there as well.
11 Q. So you spoke about those two persons being at the meeting on
12 behalf of the Vogosca SJB. Am I right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Later on you were asked in what capacity Mr. Vlaco was there, and
15 you said that he introduced himself as chief of security, or head of
16 security, and that's on pages 15588 and 89. You were asked what uniform
17 he wore. You said he had a uniform, and then you said, "I don't remember
18 whether it was a police or military uniform."
19 A. That's correct.
20 Q. Do you stand by your answer?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Fine. Do you know, since you do live in Bijeljina, that the
23 Vogosca Public Security Station included another Mr. Vlaco who has a
24 moustache and who is now an employee of Bijeljina bank who had you --
25 used to work in the crime prevention department at the SJB?
1 A. Yes, yeah I know him. He's now Raiffeisen general manager for
2 the branch office in Bijeljina. He was in the police. I don't know
3 that. I cannot respond to that question. I'm not sure whether he had
4 worked in the police or not.
5 Q. Thank you. There is no need. We cleared this through the
6 witness we discussed before the break.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Could we -- could we perhaps ask the witness what
8 the first name of this Mr. Vlaco was, if he knows?
9 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. You said -- you heard the Judge. Was it the name who had the
11 same name and surname?
12 A. Yes. Both of them were called Brano. Now, I don't know whether
13 one was Branko or something else, but because this is a diminutive form
14 of this name, Branislav, Branko, everybody gets to be called Brano.
15 Q. We will not go into that any further, but -- because we discussed
16 this through a witness who -- I won't say his name because he was a
17 protected witness, but who was better familiar with the situation, and
18 also, we will ask for this Brano Vlaco to come as a witness here and we
19 will clarify it once and for all.
20 MS. KORNER: Yes, Your Honour. All that I want to ask to be
21 clarified, please, is that we appear to have contradictory answers. It
22 was put to him at line 9 that the Vogosca SJB included another Mr. Vlaco
23 who is now an employee of Bijeljina bank, and the answer was:
24 "I know him. He's now a general manager for the Raiffeisen," I
25 think he said, "branch office in Bijeljina. He was in the police. I
1 don't know that. I cannot respond to the question. I'm not sure whether
2 he worked in the police or not."
3 So I'm not clear at the moment. Was the witness saying he
4 doesn't know one way or the other and is merely accepting what
5 Mr. Cvijetic says to him? So perhaps that ought to be clarified.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Excellent.
7 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Could you please clarify this.
9 A. I know both of these Brano Vlacos. The guy with a moustache, a
10 sort of stocky guy, he's the general manager of the branch office of
11 Raiffeisen bank in Bijeljina. Before that he used to work in the customs
12 administration. Now, whether he had worked for the Vogosca police, that
13 I don't know.
14 Q. May I continue, Your Honours?
15 JUDGE HALL: Yes, please.
16 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. Avlijas, we'll now discuss the role of the Vogosca Crisis
18 Staff at the meeting. Yesterday, you told us -- at least it was your
19 impression that Mr. Vlaco carried out his tasks according to an order by
20 the Crisis Staff.
21 A. That was my impression. I cannot tell you that for certain, but
22 I could see that in discussions everyone was looking at the president of
23 the Crisis Staff who was presiding the meeting. His name was
24 Mr. Koprivica.
25 Q. Did he act in such a manner that one could tell he was under the
1 jurisdiction of the Crisis Staff, that he was responsible to them and so
3 A. From this point in time I cannot tell you anything more precise.
4 I just told you what I believe it was.
5 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] I would just like to have this
6 verified or corrected in the transcript. It's Rajko Koprivica.
7 Q. Let me show you another document. 1D384, please.
8 Have you had time to read the document?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. You haven't seen this document before, have you?
11 A. I see it for the first time.
12 Q. As you can see here, the local organs of the municipality of
13 Zvornik are establishing a prison for more than one municipality. There
14 is mention of Bratunac and Skelani.
15 This document, they're basing on their own decision proclaiming
16 the state of war as you can see in the heading, but they also make
17 reference to regulations that can be found in Article 5, the same
18 regulation that you use in decisions establishing prisons.
19 When you came there to visit the prison, did you know who had
20 formed it?
21 A. No, I didn't. I'm seeing this decision for the first time here.
22 From the point of view how it's drafted, it's a nice decision, but at the
23 time in August of 1992 to make such decisions when the Assembly had
24 already ratified the decision on establishment of prisons, I just cannot
25 believe that someone decided to this. This is a completely wilful act.
1 It does not fit into any system. Was it because of the lack of
2 communication or was it just that acted on their own accord? From this
3 vantage point, I can just say that I'm amazed at this.
4 Q. Mr. Avlijas, you told us that you can also view this -- these
5 issues from the point of view of a legalist, but viewing the situation
6 realistically, bearing in mind the conditions at the time there, let me
7 put a specific question to you: When we look at the fate of the
8 civilians who went from Ilidza, then to Kula, back to Ilidza and then
9 waited for an exchange, and then also the persons who were waiting for
10 exchange in Kula or in Zvornik, you will agree with me that the three
11 days that you spoke about does not apply to them, and it's impossible to
12 regulate the situation through laws and regulations?
13 A. I agree. I was speaking for the last three days, and conditions
14 in place, that's something else, but this decision, although it's
15 ridiculous and was contrary to the laws of Republika Srpska, still if
16 this decision saved anyone's life, then it was a good decision. I'm
17 speaking as a human being. I don't want to enter into discussing the
18 legality, the constitutionality of this decision, but if this decision
19 saved lives, I can only say I welcome such decisions. I have no other
21 Q. In your report you had stated that the chief of the local police
22 station, Mr. Lokancevic said that they don't know what to do with the
23 people because the other side does not want to have them exchanged. It
24 was not for the first time that you came across such a problem.
25 A. I do remember this very professional man, Milorad Lokancevic whom
1 I mentioned very often after the war, I found him in a very difficult
2 situation in Zvornik then, who told me that by taking over the police
3 station -- when he was taking over the police station, he got as
4 heritage, so to speak, or responsibility of 46 or 48 -- 48 or 60 people,
5 maybe, who were grouped according to certain categories, that they are a
6 burden for him because they are in his prison, that he was trying to
7 exchange them, and that he informed also Minister Kalinic, who was the
8 minister of health, who naturally human treatment is something that would
9 fall under the mandate of the ministry of health. So this man was
10 sending lists everywhere to deal with this situation, and then I told
11 him, "Well, give me the list, and I will include that in my report.
12 Let's hope that we can save the people." And I do hope that these people
13 were saved eventually.
14 Q. You said you believed that they were saved.
15 A. Yes, because I didn't get any feedback.
16 Q. All right. If we link this up with what you've been told at
17 Ilidza, and let me remind you, you said that they'd also told you they
18 don't know what to do, that they find it a problem and that it's not
19 their jurisdiction and so on, that they don't know what to do.
20 A. Well, I wasn't told that at Ilidza. I was hold that in Hadzici
21 because the same group of people were then returned to the same location,
22 I think, in September after a failed exchange, to the same place where
23 they had been tortured and humiliated by members of the paramilitaries in
24 the municipality of Hadzici. The police commander was saying, "God,
25 please help me get rid of this burden." I was tasked with providing
1 security for them. Everybody else is on the front line. Somebody has to
2 take care of these people and secure them. There was one detail if you
3 want me to tell you something about it.
4 Q. Yes, please.
5 A. It would be interesting to all the participants. After the
6 exchange failed, Amir Masovic was the president of the commission who was
7 with the Muslim population. It was late at night. They could not come
8 back, and the police commander from Hadzici by the name of
9 Brano Mijatovic took Mr. Masovic by the hand, and he took him from
10 Kobiljaca to his apartment in Hadzici which is 15 kilometres away. The
11 Muslims had been tortured and he told him, listen, you can sleep in my
12 apartment. I guarantee for your life. Here's my gun. If something
13 starts happening you can kill me first. And on the next day he returned
14 him to Sarajevo.
15 Q. Mr. Amor Masovic later on became rather famous, and I think you
16 were in contact with him.
17 A. And so we co-operated. I was a member of the Republika Srpska
18 Commission for Cooperation, and according to me Mr. Masovic is a highly
19 professional official.
20 Q. Could you please repeat what was the name of the commission that
21 you and Mr. Masovic worked in?
22 A. We co-operated during the war and after the war. I was a member
23 of the commission of the Republika Srpska for missing civilians and
24 fighters of Republika Srpska in the period between 1999 and 2001, and in
25 the course of the war since April 1993, up until 1996, or even 1997, I
1 was a member of the central commission of Republika Srpska for exchange
2 of prisoners of war and the bodies of those killed.
3 Q. Let me just say -- or ask you whether it was your impression that
4 in the police stations where you had found these people, whether people
5 were aware that it's not part of their authority to keep -- or
6 jurisdiction to keep these people but that they don't have any other
8 A. I can only speak about Hadzici and Zvornik, but there people were
9 saying, "We don't have any solution. We would like to get rid of this
10 burden. We don't need it, but there's nothing we can do."
11 Q. Thank you for answering my questions.
12 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have no further
13 questions for this witness.
14 JUDGE HALL: Yes, Mr. Krgovic.
15 Cross-examination by Mr. Krgovic:
16 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Avlijas.
17 A. Good morning.
18 Q. My name is Dragan Krgovic. I appear on behalf of Stojan
19 Zupljanin. I will have some questions of you in regard to your
20 testimony. The same as with Mr. Cvijetic, since we share the same
21 language, I would kindly ask you to pause, especially in view of the fact
22 that I speak fast. Do break between questions and answers so that we
23 wouldn't have any problems with interpretation.
24 Mr. Avlijas, I wanted to go back to a topic touched upon by
25 Mr. Cvijetic which had to do with the authority of the Crisis Staffs in
1 the territory you visited. When you answered to Mr. Cvijetic's
2 questions, you said, among other things, if I understood correctly, that
3 you could notice that the Crisis Staffs were basically the main and sole
4 authority in those areas, and they expanded their authority so as to
5 include things within their remit which they ordinarily were not supposed
7 A. Well, I can't go into the framework of their authority, but I
8 know that nothing could be done without them. For example, in Ilidza,
9 nothing could be done without the Crisis Staff president Mr. Stojicevic's
11 Q. You were also asked a number of questions about remand prisons or
12 whatever they call them, collection centres for prisoners, depending on
13 what names were used by either of the sides, the Muslim and the Serb.
14 I wanted show you Exhibit P391. You surely know that besides
15 your commission there were -- there was a number of other commissions in
16 the RS which dealt with the situation in individual collection centres.
17 Let me call them that way. This is a report of that kind for Sanski
18 Most, of the SJB in Sanski Most, for the CSB commission.
19 Have a look at paragraph 2 whereby it says:
20 "The Crisis Staff of the municipality ordered the investigation
21 centres to be set up. It made the decision that a prison should be set
22 up in the Betonirka company facilities. It appointed the warden and
23 assistant warden of the prison, who were given personnel for physical
24 security. The personnel consisted of members of the former TO and four
25 or five members of the reserve police force."
1 Mr. Avlijas, it is clear from this that they basically
2 established a prison and organised prison guards following a decision of
3 the Ministry of Justice. Is it not the case?
4 A. Well, they basically assumed the authority of the Assembly,
5 because legislation is not used to establish prisons. Hence, I have no
6 comment. This is the first time I see this document, and there's nothing
7 I can say.
8 Q. And they also organised the prison guards. They established an
9 entire prison, including the security staff.
10 A. Yes. They organised the whole thing. Let me have a look
11 further. Formation of collection investigation centre -- centres was
12 ordered by the Crisis Staff. They basically had it all in one,
13 collection centre, investigation prison or remand prison, and a gaol.
14 And they also secured security staff from the TO and the reserve police
15 force without the knowledge of the district court which otherwise, under
16 the law, is duty-bound to supervise remand prisons and other such
17 facilities under the Law on Criminal Procedure. This was in
18 contravention with the instruction of the organisation of prisons under
19 the law, and they basically bypassed any and all decisions of the
21 Q. You are also familiar with the fact that certain representatives
22 of Crisis Staffs even assumed the right to pardon prisoners.
23 A. Yes, I had such an example in Foca. I went there in December
24 1992. Since I was in charge of misdemeanour courts, I went to the court
25 and it was presided over by a female judge, Mandic. What she told me was
1 this: "Just imagine, learned friend, we had the Crisis Staff president
2 pardoning convicts." I immediately advised the minister. And it was a
3 terrible thing.
4 Q. Mr. Avlijas, you were shown an exhibit by the Prosecutor, which
5 is P1635.
6 A. I have already commented upon this report. Actually, I testified
7 in full about it.
8 Q. Let me ask you this, it has to do with a meeting: Mr. Milan
9 Trbojevic who was deputy prime minister was in charge of control and
10 co-ordination between the two ministries, the ministry of the interior
11 and of justice; correct?
12 A. He was the deputy prime minister in charge of internal policy,
13 and we all know what that encompasses.
14 Q. If you look closely at the report, especially the last sentence
15 of the first paragraph when those in attendance are mentioned, it is
16 stated they held a meeting on the topic of situation and problems of
17 prisoners camps in this area.
18 That was the point of the meeting, was it not?
19 A. Yes, but it also touched upon the organisation of military
20 courts, co-operation with the ICRC, and other topical issues.
21 Q. Mr. Radic informed those in attendance of the number of prisoner
22 centres and the problems they had with such facilities, and we can also
23 find it in your report.
24 A. That is correct.
25 Q. As far as I can see in your report, and as far as I can
1 understand your testimony, you were then told that such prisoners centres
2 in Omarska and Keraterm were disbanded, and as far as I can see here,
3 there was still a collection centre in Trnopolje which was not a full
5 A. Yes. It was commented upon. We were informed of it at the
6 meeting. We were told that it was a town hall and a school where those
7 people gathered by themselves. They cooked there, and some of them
8 awaited their departure to leave for some other country or to simply
9 leave the territory of Prijedor.
10 Q. And you say as much in your report by saying: "Muslims are
11 accommodated in those facilities, who took shelter there in fear of
12 revenge by paramilitaries."
13 Those facilities have a free entry and exit policy. What you
14 were basically told is that people came there voluntarily, that no one
15 was forced to be there.
16 A. Well, that's the extent of the information I received at the
17 meeting. So it was indirect information. I did not personally go to
18 these locations.
19 Q. Let's go to page 2 of the document. The last paragraph. It has
20 to do with what you have just said. It says:
21 "Following this joint meeting, a meeting was held especially
22 with presidents of the courts and prosecutors, as well as representatives
23 of the Ministry of Defence. The topic of the meeting was the
24 organisation and functioning of the Military Court and military
25 prosecutor's offices, which do not function at all in the Krajina."
1 One of the problems, we did not touch upon your remit directly,
2 was that the military judiciary as well as parts of the civilian
3 judiciary did not function properly; is that correct?
4 A. Yes. It is. The number of crimes under the then law committed
5 by soldiers was great. They were all seen as soldiers. Under the law if
6 a member of the armed forces commits a crime, it falls under the
7 jurisdiction of the Military Prosecutor's Office and the military court,
8 and there were -- this was a cause of frequent conflicts and
9 misunderstandings between the civilian and military authorities.
10 Q. Well, the gist of it is that the perpetrators were not adequately
11 prosecuted, which caused a lot of problems in terms of public law and
13 A. Well, yes. It had an impact on the environment as a whole in
14 those area.
15 Q. You discussed this with the Prosecutor already. At the meeting,
16 a question of the murder of several people at Koricanske Stijene was
18 A. Yes. The late Dr. Radic, Banja Luka mayor, insisted on receiving
19 some sort of explanation for that.
20 Q. When Mr. Zupljanin addressed the issue, you said that when he
21 referred to the work of the police he said that the Banja Luka police
22 that they're part of the work and it was up to the prosecution now, the
23 prosecutor's office, and that they should be asked about the fate of the
24 case and why there was nothing being done about it.
25 A. Yes. There was arguments exchanged. People mentioned how many
1 innocent people were killed for no reason. This was a rampage, and this
2 was -- that's how the Banja Luka mayor characterised it. He insisted on
3 clearing up the situation.
4 I saw Stojan Zupljanin for the first time then when he said that
5 he had established a team which visited this scene to gather information.
6 I cannot recall everything exactly, but I think the army offered rescue
7 teams to go down the gorge in order to reach the bodies, which was
8 otherwise impossible to do. He said he could do his utmost and submitted
9 a criminal report to the prosecutor's office, and then he put a question
10 to Mr. Puvacic who was the basic prosecutor as to what he intended to do,
11 because he said that the ball was in his court.
12 Q. Regarding the suspects or potential perpetrators of the crime, it
13 was said that the crime was committed by those who were escorting the
15 A. Well, let's not reinvent the wheel here. The entire RS knows
16 that it was done by members of the SJB in Prijedor, commanded by
17 Simo Drljaca. That was no secret. I believe even some names of those in
18 the escort were circulated, and Mr. Simo Drljaca said that some of the
19 policemen were on the run because he was directly asked about that.
20 Q. Did you know those suspected of having committed that crime were
21 transferred to Han Pijesak in order to prevent them -- their arrest?
22 A. Yes, but I'm not familiar with this fact. I hear of it for the
23 first time.
24 Q. A part of my question is missing. I said that in the meantime,
25 they had joined the army of the of the VRS.
1 A. This is the first time I hear of it. I don't know about that.
2 Q. And that was when Mr. Zupljanin also said to all those present
3 about the identification and the apprehension of the suspected
4 perpetrators, that Mr. Drljaca or -- or, rather, he singled out
5 Mr. Drljaca and said that they were on the run.
6 A. Not only Mr. Zupljanin. Everybody mentioned Simo Drljaca,
7 because they were supposed to go to Travnik, and there was an escort,
8 there was a convoy of buses, and it was within the remit of the public
9 security at Prijedor.
10 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the last part
11 of his answer, and slow down.
12 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Witness, the interpreters ask that you repeat
13 the last part of your answer and that you attempt to speak more slowly in
14 your answers. It is hard to interpreter correctly when the speakers are
15 speaking too fast. Thank you very much, sir. Please repeat.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is no secret at all, and it was
17 known on that day at the meeting. The entire Krajina and all of the RS
18 knew that the police station, or SJB, I'm not sure of the exact name at
19 the time, was in charge of escorting a civilian convoy, a convoy of
20 civilian population, I think predominantly of Muslim ethnicity, I don't
21 know whether there were any Croats among them, from Prijedor, because
22 they were inhabitants of Prijedor, to Travnik, which was under the
23 control of the opposite side. And everybody present at the meeting knew
24 that the massacre, the crime, had been committed by members of the
25 Prijedor Police Station, the chief of which was Simo Drljaca. Only it
1 wasn't known whether it was active-duty police officers or reserve police
2 officers who had done it. There was no doubt about whether or not the
3 crime had been committed or not. Everything was known.
4 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. It was at that meeting that Mr. Drljaca said that they were on
6 the run, that they were impossible to find, and that he could do nothing
7 about it.
8 A. It was an ugly story, but there was no normal reaction to such
10 Q. I would like to correct the transcript. You actually said that
11 it's not appropriate to speak about dead people.
12 A. Yes, that's what I said. I apologise.
13 If I may comment. Imagine an official meeting in Banja Luka, the
14 most high-ranking officials of the entire Krajina, and everybody speaks
15 about a terrible crime without any self-criticism and with -- and there's
16 no responsibility. That's what I wanted to say.
17 Q. And not only from the Krajina but also the prime minister and the
18 minister of justice and generals. Obviously, nobody had enough authority
19 over Simo Drljaca; right?
20 A. Yes. That's my conclusion, because if it had been a
21 well-functioning state, Simo Drljaca should have been locked up. If
22 there is command responsibility in a well-functioning state, then there
23 can be no discussion about it. A hundred and fifty or 200 people were
24 killed. The chief of police is at -- at a meeting, and the police
25 officers who had committed a crime were on the run. I mean, what can you
1 say about that?
2 Q. Mr. Avlijas, you said that after that you attended another
3 meeting at Prijedor, and it had to do with Trnopolje also.
4 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] I would like to show the witness
5 Exhibit P393.
6 Q. This is your report from October 1992.
7 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Let's show the witness item 4.
8 That's on page 3 of the Serbian. Actually, the pagination shows 2, but
9 it's item 4.
10 Q. Here you speak about the situation in Prijedor, and you mention
11 Trnopolje are, and it says:
12 "The former collection centre at Trnopolje was closed down
13 following the agreement. However, because of irresponsible people in
14 Prijedor who launched the false information among the Muslim
15 population --"
16 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Let's turn the page in Serbian.
17 The page in English should stay.
18 Q. "-- that the only way to leave this town is to gather at the
19 Trnopolje collection centre and that the organisation will be by the
20 International Red Cross exclusively."
21 And you go on to speak about the meeting in Prijedor where a
22 representative of the ICRC appear -- appeared. Do you remember his name?
23 A. Dr. Beat. I co-operated very well with him, and it was with him
24 that I visited Doboj.
25 Q. You said that there was no collection centre in Trnopolje where
1 people gathered spontaneously. It was also confirmed by Dr. Beat.
2 A. It was stated at the meeting, because when we went to Trnopolje,
3 there was nothing left. If I may comment.
4 Q. Go ahead.
5 A. At that meeting, we were informed that somebody had placed that
6 story on purpose. I cannot prove that, however, who was -- who was
7 behind that, only to have the people gather at the collection centre to
8 enable others to loot their homes. That was the basic reason. That's
9 what was said to us at the meeting.
10 Q. Let us display page 4 of this document. You were saying earlier,
11 answering the Prosecutor's question, from whom you had got that
12 information, from officers of military security regarding Sanski Most,
13 but you also mentioned Kotor Varos. I believe that you made a mistake
15 A. Teslic, yes. It was Teslic, actually.
16 Q. So this part that you wrote in the report refers to Teslic rather
17 than Kotor Varos; right?
18 A. Yes. We couldn't access the area to the right of Banja Luka.
19 Q. And you learned from the officers that there was a POW camp
20 controlled by the Serb military.
21 A. Yes. Yes, they told me so.
22 Q. Does the name Pribinic mean anything to you? Does it sound
23 familiar, speaking about Teslic?
24 A. No, it doesn't. I hear it for the first time now.
25 Q. Speaking about Manjaca which was discussed here, there is no
1 doubt that it was a POW camp controlled and commanded by the army; right?
2 A. Yes. It was under the exclusive authority of the army. They
3 provided security. It so happened that I was involved in the exchange
4 that I conducted with the late Ivo Rosic and Dr. Branko Dokic with the
5 Croatian side from Mostar for Croatian and Serb civilians at Pakovo near
6 Sibenik. And when I visited Manjaca, a major was the commander of the
7 camp. I forget his name. It was only the army that had authority over
8 that camp.
9 Q. Thank you, Mr. Avlijas. I have no further questions.
10 A. You're welcome.
11 JUDGE HALL: Yes, Ms. Korner.
12 Re-examination by Ms. Korner:
13 Q. You were -- sorry. You were asked a moment ago by Mr. Krgovic
14 about Mr. Drljaca. It was put to you that nobody had enough authority
15 over Mr. Drljaca, and you said:
16 "Yes, that's your conclusion, because had it been a
17 well-functioning state, Simo Drljaca should have been locked up."
18 At that meeting there was a representative of the Banja Luka
19 Corps you told us.
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Stojan Zupljanin was there?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Mr. Subotic, the minister of defence was there?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Mr. Trbojevic, the deputy prime minister was there.
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Any one of those people had the authority, did they not, had they
3 wished to exercise it, to ensure that Mr. Drljaca was arrested?
4 A. I phrased it correctly, "in a well-functioning state," but nobody
5 could harm Simo Drljaca. He was the sheriff of Prijedor. And I can say
6 openly I believe that I told the investigators when they asked me about
7 staffing and dealing with personnel issues, it was the SDS that was
8 consulted about everything, and I asked whether -- or, rather, I was
9 asked whether a minister could appoint anyone, and I answered that he
10 could when he got approval to do so. And I know that everybody was --
11 had a hard time replacing Simo Drljaca. Well, from the perspective of a
12 well-functioning state this may seem odd, but -- and I agree that he
13 shouldn't have been at the meeting at all, that he should have been in
14 gaol if he was responsible for the death of 200 people.
15 Q. Yes. Do you know how large the Banja Luka Corps was, which was
16 then the 1st Krajina Corps? How many people it had.
17 A. I don't know, believe me. I know that it was a large unit, the
18 biggest corps, bearing in mind the area of responsibility of the corps.
19 Q. Were you aware that there were Special Police available to
20 Mr. Zupljanin in Banja Luka, a group of Special Police?
21 A. Believe me, I don't know about that. I'm not competent to speak
22 about the power of individual MUP officials. I don't know what was
23 within whose authority.
24 Q. All right. But from what you're saying, there was sufficient
25 manpower to arrest Simo Drljaca had anybody wanted to do it?
1 A. I cannot comment that. Every Crisis Staff and every region was
2 actually a state within a state, and what I'm about to say is my opinion,
3 so for what it's worth: Simo Drljaca was the untouchable boss of
4 Prijedor and its surroundings. In the eyes of some shady people, he was
5 their idol, and it was carefully considered what to do when it came to
6 replacing people, and I believe it was the SDS's fault that they didn't
7 allow the professionals to do their work.
8 Q. You say that he was the untouchable boss. Is that because nobody
9 wanted to touch him?
10 A. Believe me, I cannot answer this question. I told you that those
11 were my opinions and my observations from going to the field every day.
12 I wasn't in the political structures. I didn't decide about anything. I
13 never joined any party, and that's why I was left without a job. I was
14 fired from my job in 1992.
15 Q. You told, I think it was Mr. Cvijetic, that you were appointed to
16 the Commission of Exchange in 1993.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Was Simo Drljaca appointed to that commission as well?
19 A. Unfortunately, yes. One of the members of the commission was
20 Simo Drljaca as representative of the MUP, because they tried to get rid
21 of him and appointed him to such a commission dealing with these
22 humanitarian issues, which is -- which I cannot understand. And he had
23 in the meantime been relieved of his position in Prijedor.
24 Q. So he could be relieved of his position in Prijedor. He could be
25 removed from Prijedor and sent to the commission, but he couldn't be
2 A. I cannot answer this comment of yours. What I'm saying is had
3 the state been functioning properly, he should have been arrested. Why
4 wasn't he arrested? I don't know. I'm answering you in such a way as to
5 explain what I would have done had I been in power, for instance.
6 Q. He was appointed to the commission as the representative of the
7 MUP. Do you know who was responsible in the MUP for making that
9 A. The minister, Ratko Adzic.
10 Q. You also were shown the document from Sanski Most, the report of
11 the SJB in August, which showed that instead of the four prisoners that
12 you had been told about, there were some 1.655 prisoners in Sanski Most.
13 Did anybody every say -- tell you that before you saw that report today?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Who was that? And when?
16 A. In. No, I said yes, yes I can answer. This is an information
17 that was made in August, this information from Sanski Most, and I was
18 there in October. I know that all the prisoners from that part of
19 Krajina were driven away, that they were at Manjaca. So if there was
20 more than a thousand of them, that they were transferred to Manjaca. One
21 can find documentation confirming that.
22 Q. Yes, but I'm sorry, what you put into the report that you
23 delivered to Mr. Mandic -- and perhaps we'd better have it up again.
24 It's document -- so sorry.
25 A. In October 1992.
1 Q. Yes. I'm sorry. I've lost the exhibit number again.
2 MS. KORNER: It's P393. Can we go, please, to the part of Sanski
3 Most, which is on the fifth page in English and the fourth in B/C/S.
4 Q. What you wrote down was:
5 "The information that there is a camp in Sanski Most is not
6 correct. In that area, only four people were taken prisoner and
7 transferred to Manjaca during combat activities."
8 Now, had you been given information before, and that's why you
9 were asking about Sanski Most, that considerably more people had been
10 captured and taken prisoner?
11 A. Well, the people who were detained in Sanski Most in August, who
12 were in Keraterm, who were in other camps such as Omarska, and this whole
13 stretch between Banja Luka and Prijedor, they were all transferred, three
14 or 4.000 of them were transferred to Manjaca. At the time of drafting of
15 this report of mine which was in October, the officer from the corps
16 informed me that there were additional four persons who had been captured
17 and transferred to Manjaca. This is what this is about.
18 Q. I see. So what you intended to convey by this, do I understand
19 this correctly, was that since August, there were only four other people
20 who had been taken prisoner.
21 A. Between the drafting of my report -- or during the time while I
22 was drafting my report, he told me that during that period four other
23 prisoners were captured because there may have been fighting there, and
24 that all four of them were transferred in the meantime to Manjaca in
25 addition to all the others that had been transferred earlier. Of course,
1 those who were still alive.
2 Q. You see, would you -- if you read that report, it sounds as
3 though throughout the whole period only four people had been taken
4 prisoner. Would you -- would you accept that?
5 A. No, I cannot accept that. I was drafting a report about the
6 situation at the time and not about how many people were captured
7 throughout the war. I was told to go and check how many people were
8 there captured. I went to Vlasenica, Zvornik, and all the other
9 locations that are mentioned here in the report.
10 Q. Right. Thank you very much, Mr. Avlijas. That's all I ask.
11 JUDGE HALL: Mr. Avlijas, thank you very much for your assistance
12 to the Tribunal. You are now released, and we wish you a safe journey
13 back to your home.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you for understanding.
15 [The witness withdrew]
16 JUDGE HALL: Ms. Korner, where are you in terms of witnesses?
17 MS. KORNER: Well, Your Honour, never have I seen a more
18 topsy-turvy set of days, because the estimate for this witness was
19 something in the region of four hours cross-examination, which is why we
20 were so anxious to conclude him. In fact, we can, if Your Honours rise,
21 we can start the next witness at 12.15, which witness is -- ST-251. And
22 he has protective measures.
23 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
24 JUDGE HALL: We are advised that he won't be available until
25 12 --
1 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Presiding Judge.
2 JUDGE HALL: He wouldn't be in the room until 12.15 so we're
3 probably looking at 12.30.
4 MS. KORNER: Yes.
5 JUDGE HALL: Do we -- once we start him, where do we go? Do we
6 still need the reserved session this afternoon?
7 MS. KORNER: Obviously, Your Honours, it would help, because he's
8 supposed to be a short -- Your Honour, this witness is short, and if
9 Your Honours were to sit a little bit into the afternoon, we could
10 probably complete him today. In fact, we may be able to complete him. I
11 don't think Mr. Hannis, who is calling the witness, intends to be more
12 than about 30 minutes with him. I'm told 45 minutes.
13 JUDGE HALL: So we reconvene at 12.30.
14 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] May I just add something. We only
15 now received the documents concerning the coming witness. He was
16 scheduled to testify on Monday. We certainly cannot cross-examine the
17 witness at the moment regardless of the fact it's going to be a short
18 witness and he's going to be discussing very limited set of facts in
19 relation to adjudicated facts. If we could cross-examine this witness on
20 Monday maybe. The Prosecution can do their direct now and then we would
21 like to do the cross-examination on Monday.
22 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] After all the topsy-turviness
23 concerning the previous witness, we believed that this following witness
24 would start on Monday. I don't even have the documentation necessary to
25 go through, but maybe we could compensate for the time we've spent
1 yesterday by doing this on Monday.
2 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, we've also --
3 JUDGE HALL: I've heard what Mr. Krgovic and Mr. Cvijetic have
4 said, but I thought the switching this witness on Monday only occurred in
5 the very latest schedule that came out this morning, so I'm surprised
6 that each of them has indicated that they're embarrassed by having to
7 cross-examine him today.
8 Yes, Ms. Korner.
9 MS. KORNER: Yes, Your Honours, also I don't -- I'm told that we
10 applied for protective measures which I don't think have been objected
11 to, but I don't think we've had a formal decision granting them.
12 JUDGE HARHOFF: What are you asking?
13 MS. KORNER: And, Your Honours, the --
14 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]
15 MS. KORNER: The documents are only photographs and maps, no
16 other documents.
17 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this witness wasn't
18 scheduled after of Mr. Avlijas. It was Mr. ST-227. That's the problem
19 that we're facing. We received the proofing notes and other documents
20 only ten minutes ago.
21 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]
22 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Krgovic, in the plan that I have for this
23 week, clearly Witness ST-251 was scheduled to begin his testimony today.
24 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, I'm told we'll offer them either.
25 They can have 227 or 251. Both of them are here and both are ready to
2 JUDGE HARHOFF: So with which of them would you prefer to --
3 MS. KORNER: We would prefer to call 251 because he is the one
4 who has problems with his job and would like to get back if at all
5 possible. And is also shorter than the other witness.
6 JUDGE HARHOFF: Counsels, I think Witness 251 is -- is one of the
7 adjudicated fact witnesses.
8 Is that correct, Mrs. Korner?
9 MS. KORNER: It is, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE HARHOFF: And so the testimony that he is going to offer is
11 going to be very, very limited, and I wonder if we postpone him until,
12 say, 1.00 or even 1.30, if that would give you enough time to -- to just
13 flip through his -- his documents and then be ready for his
14 cross-examination. I think it would be helpful if we could finish him
15 off by the end of this day's session.
16 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] I agree, Your Honour.
17 Cross-examination of the witnesses that are here for adjudicated facts
18 should be very short providing the Prosecutor's Office keeps to that
19 topic, maybe five or so minutes.
20 What Judge Harhoff suggested would be fine. If we start at 1.30,
21 by quarter to 2.00 we would all be finished. Mr. Cvijetic I believe will
22 not have any questions in cross-examination for this witness.
23 MS. KORNER: Sorry, I don't follow that. Your Honours, that
24 can't be right. If we adjourn until 1.30 and there's
25 examination-in-chief, cross-examination will not be completed by quarter
1 to 2.00.
2 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] No, no. I was saying I was in
3 favour of this first version that was presented by Judge Harhoff, namely
4 that we start at 1.00.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE HALL: So the -- so before we adjourn, I just want the --
7 to be clear as to what we're doing, and I invite the court officer to
8 correct me if I get it wrong. We rise now. We resume at 1.00, and we
9 sit until, at the very latest, 2.30.
10 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
11 JUDGE HALL: Yes. Thank you. So the -- again, we appreciate the
12 co-operation of the accused in this regard and those who have the custody
13 of them would have noted what I would have said in terms of time. So we
14 resume at 1.00.
15 --- Recess taken at 12.06 p.m.
16 --- On resuming at 1.12 p.m.
17 [The witness entered court]
18 JUDGE HALL: Firstly, for the record, please note that we
19 reconvene for this final session of today under Rule 15 bis.
20 Secondly, the Trial Chamber affirms in accordance with the Rules
21 the protective measures that have previously been afforded to this
23 MR. HANNIS: Thank you, Your Honour. In conjunction with that,
24 his -- his pseudonym that he had from the previous case was a case
25 specific number, and our request was that he assigned the number ST-251
1 for our purposes in this trial.
2 JUDGE HALL: Yes. So could the witness be invited to make the
3 solemn declaration first of all, please.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare I will speak the
5 truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
6 JUDGE HALL: Thank you, sir. You may be seated.
7 The -- I remind you that the solemn declaration that you have
8 made imposes a new obligation to give truthful testimony subject to the
9 penalties that the Tribunal is empowered to impose for giving false or
10 misleading testimony.
11 The first thing I would invite the Prosecution to do is to -- you
12 have the pseudonym sheet, I suppose.
13 You're going to be handed a sheet of paper. If you would confirm
14 that that correctly indicates your name and other relevant particulars.
15 WITNESS: ST-251
16 [Witness answered through interpreter]
17 JUDGE HALL: And if you're so satisfied, we would invite you to
18 sign that.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is correct.
20 JUDGE HALL: Thank you. So it's admitted as an exhibit under
22 And I would remind you that the purpose of that is because
23 exceptionally, the Chamber has afforded you certain protective measures
24 of a pseudonym, and therefore in the course of your testimony you would
25 be referred to either by that pseudonym or by -- just referred to as
1 "Mr. Witness" to facilitate your testimony. I needn't explain to you.
2 As I said, this is an exceptional measure, because as far as possible the
3 proceedings of the Tribunal are held entirely in public, but for reasons
4 which would have been fully canvassed when you last appeared before the
5 Tribunal, the -- you have been granted the modified protection --
6 protective measures of a pseudonym and --
7 MR. HANNIS: Facial distortion, Your Honours.
8 JUDGE HALL: Thank you. And facial distortion.
9 Thank you, Mr. Hannis.
10 The -- yes, please.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, for the record, I would like to
12 mention that the pseudonym sheet for Witness ST-251 shall be given
13 Exhibit P01636. Thank you, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE HALL: Thank you.
15 The -- you have been called to give testimony within a very
16 limited scope today, and therefore we fully expect that you -- your
17 testimony would be completed before we rise for the day in a little over
18 an hour. So the -- with that I would invite Mr. Hannis to begin.
19 MR. HANNIS: Thank you, Your Honours. This witness has been
20 called particularly to address adjudicated fact 1145. However, he -- I
21 do need to reference another adjudicated fact connected with him, which
22 is 1138. That was accepted by the Trial Chamber in its entirety, but
23 just in setting the background for this witness, I will make reference to
24 it so you know who he is and where he's from.
25 Examination by Mr. Hannis:
1 Q. Sir, could you tell us where you were living in early 1992.
2 A. In Sanski Most, in the village of Hrustovo.
3 Q. And do you recall when the war broke out in the vicinity of your
4 village, approximately?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Do you recall what month that was?
7 A. It was end of May 1992, I think.
8 Q. And what did you do when the fighting began in your village in
9 May 1992?
10 A. I was not employed. I wasn't doing anything special. I was at
12 Q. And did you -- did you remain in the village throughout the
13 fighting or did you leave the area?
14 A. The village of Hrustovo I left before the fighting that took
15 place in Hrustovo.
16 Q. Where did you go?
17 A. To the neighbouring village, Klijevci, where my grandmother
18 lived, and my uncle as well.
19 Q. That's also the municipality of Sanski Most?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. I want to tell you about an adjudicated fact that we have in this
22 case and ask you just a couple of questions about this. Around -- this
23 is adjudicated fact 1138, for the record, which says on or around 27 June
24 1992, local Serb reservists in olive-grey uniforms arrived at the Muslim
25 hamlet of Kenjari. It goes on to say that 20 Muslim men were arrested
1 and interrogated, that Vlado Vrkes, president of the Sanski Most SDS
2 assured them they had nothing to fear. They were led by Serb soldiers to
3 a house in the hamlet of Blazevici, pardon my pronunciation. Soldiers
4 threw explosives into the house and then opened fire with rifles on those
5 trying to escape. The bodies of the dead were taken back into the house
6 and the house was set on fire.
7 Do you know who those 20 men were? I'm not asking you to name
8 them right now, just did you know those men?
9 A. Yes, I knew those men. They were inhabitants of hamlets of
10 Kenjari and Zukici, and one or two men whose houses were a bit remote,
11 but all of them were part of Klijevci.
12 Q. Were you one of that group of 20 men?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. What happened to the other 19?
15 A. They were killed.
16 Q. How did you -- well, what did you do when you apparently survived
17 and managed to get away? Where did you go?
18 A. From the house in Blazevici I went to Hrustovo to my hamlet where
19 I lived. I decided to go home and see what the situation was there.
20 Q. I'm sorry, I don't think we asked you before, but your ethnicity
22 A. I am a Bosniak, a Muslim.
23 Q. How long did you -- well, that was -- I'm sorry. That event was
24 on or about the 27th of June. How long --
25 A. Yes. That was a month after Hrustovo was taken by the Serbian
1 forces and after they'd done what they'd done there.
2 Q. Did you have occasion to go to the village of Tomina in Sanski
3 Most municipality?
4 A. Yes. After I reached my home and saw what it looked like, that
5 there were no inhabitants there, I headed towards the village of Tomina.
6 While I was still in Zukici or Kenjari, I knew that inhabitants of
7 Hrustovo and Vrhpolje were driven away to a place called Tominska
8 Palanka, which is part of Tomina where exclusively Muslims resided.
9 Q. And how long did you remain at Tomina before you went or were
10 taken somewhere else, approximately?
11 A. I think four days.
12 Q. What happened at the end of those four days?
13 A. So on the fourth day, in the morning, we heard a police car.
14 Through a bullhorn they were calling all the inhabitants of Hrustovo,
15 Vrhpolje and Kamicak to come out to the main road between Sanski Most and
16 Kljuc. So they asked us to appear there.
17 Q. Did you do that, and, if so, what happened then?
18 A. Yes. We all came out, all of us, from Hrustovo, Vrhpolje, and
19 Kamicak. We all went to the main road and there we were put into buses
20 and then we headed towards Sanski Most.
21 Q. And who was -- who was doing that? Who was gathering you
22 together and putting you on the buses and sending you to Sanski Most?
23 What people were doing that?
24 A. The police and the Serbian Army. I remember well that the driver
25 of this Golf vehicle was a teacher at high school in Sanski Most. His
1 surname was Banjac, but I don't remember or don't know his first name.
2 Q. And the police -- you said the Serbian Army. Were the police
3 also Serbian?
4 A. Yes. I said both the police and the army.
5 Q. And where were you taken?
6 A. The buses brought us to a -- a hole in Sanski Most. Actually, it
7 was located on the road between Sanski Most and Bosanska Krupa, not far
8 from Sanski Most. It was an industrial area, and there was this large
9 hole there, and that's where they got us out of the buses.
10 Q. Do you remember the name of this hall in the industrial area?
11 A. I later found out it was called Krings, most probably a company
12 from Austria making cables was located there.
13 Q. What happened when you arrived at Krings in Sanski Most?
14 A. We had to enter it and wait. We simply didn't know what was
15 going on.
16 Q. Had you been told why you were taken to this location?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Who at that end in Sanski Most at Krings was taking you off the
19 bus and placing you inside the building?
20 A. The escort was provided by the Serbian Army.
21 Q. And from that point how long did you stay at Krings before you
22 were eventually released?
23 A. I think it was a month, give or take a day.
24 Q. I'd like to show you first a -- a map that is exhibit P411.37.
25 This is a -- this is a document that's already in evidence, sir, and it
1 will be up on your screen in a moment. I just want to ask you if you can
2 confirm something for me.
3 While it's coming up, I can tell you it's a map of Sanski Most
4 town area with some photographs on the side. And on the map, on the left
5 side, near the middle you'll see the number 4 and the word "Krings" under
6 it. Does that accurately show the relative location of where Krings was
7 in Sanski Most town?
8 A. I think so.
9 Q. And the road we see running above Krings, do you know where that
10 road went to? The one that runs from left to right above Krings.
11 A. The road goes from Sanski Most, Lucica Palanka, towards Bosanska
13 Q. Thank you. I'd like next to show you Exhibit P414. Can you tell
14 us what that's a picture of?
15 A. Am I allowed to stand up, because I have a reflection on the
17 Q. Yes, you may.
18 A. Yes. That's the industrial hall where we were held. But it's
19 been refurbished and there seem to be some -- there seems to be some
20 machinery there which wasn't there before.
21 Q. Thank you. And one more photo. If I could show you P415. And
22 again if you need to stand up or you need a hard copy of the photo, let
23 me know.
24 A. I can see much better from here. This is most likely the hall,
25 but there were no trucks or material inside when we were there.
1 Q. Thank you. At the time you were placed in the Krings Hall, what
2 was inside, if anything?
3 A. The hall was almost empty. You could see old pallets and parts
4 of machinery that had been left behind.
5 Q. How many of you were taken to Krings Hall when you first went
6 there? Approximately.
7 A. The first day when we arrived there?
8 Q. Yes.
9 A. The hall was quite full, so I think between 6 and 700 people.
10 There were children and women there as well as the elderly and
11 middle-aged men.
12 Q. When you first arrived there was there anybody already there or
13 was it empty?
14 A. When we arrived, the hall was empty, but the buses kept coming,
15 as well as trucks.
16 Q. And the 6 to 700 people that you mentioned, what was -- the 600
17 to 700 people you mentioned, what was the ethnicity of all of you?
18 A. Muslim. Bosniaks.
19 Q. And where were those people from? I know you were brought from
20 Tomina, but were all these people from Tomina or other villages in Sanski
21 Most municipality?
22 A. The people who were there were from the villages of Hrustovo,
23 Vrhpolje, and Kamicak who had been driven out from places such as Tomina,
24 Caplje, et cetera. We were all put together in the hall.
25 Q. Now, you told us before that I think you remained there for a
1 month. What about the women and children that were first detained with
2 you? How long did they stay?
3 A. We spent the first night there together, and early the next
4 morning some soldiers arrived who said that the women, children, and
5 those over 60, as well as the handicapped, were to leave on board buses
6 and trucks. They were taken elsewhere.
7 Q. Approximately how many of you men, then, of I guess ages between
8 16 and 60 remained behind?
9 A. I can't say precisely. I think between a hundred and a hundred
10 and fifty. I don't know exactly.
11 Q. And who was guarding you while you were there at Krings?
12 A. We were locked inside the hall, and outside there were Serb
14 Q. Did anyone tell you why you were being detained during your month
16 A. No. Nobody told us anything.
17 Q. And how long did the Serb soldiers continue to guard you during
18 your month there?
19 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, an objection to this
20 line of questioning. Any further questions go beyond the testimony of
21 this witness and the purpose of his testimony, which is the adjudicated
22 fact regarding the humanitarian conditions and the location where the
23 witness was held. If one bears in mind this Trial Chamber's decision by
24 which it is stated that testimony of this time needs -- of this kind
25 needs to be focused exclusively on the adjudicated fact for which the
1 witness is being called and possibly to testify to a certain extent on
2 the background. In any case, this line of questioning goes well beyond
3 the context itself and the adjudicated fact.
4 MR. HANNIS: Your Honours, if I -- if I may. I disagree. I'm
5 laying the foundation to get to precisely the portion of the adjudicated
6 fact that was stricken by the Trial Chamber in its decision, the last
7 sentence in fact 1145, and I have to lay some foundation before I can ask
8 him the specific questions related to that. If I may continue.
9 JUDGE HALL: Yes, but bear in mind what Mr. Krgovic has correctly
10 stated about the circumscription concerning your questions and come
11 rapidly to the adjudicated fact.
12 MR. HANNIS: I am, Your Honour.
13 Q. Did you -- did you recall my last question? How long did Serb
14 soldiers continue to guard you from your first day there? Were they
15 guarding you for the entire month?
16 A. No they were there for a week perhaps. After that I believe the
17 reserve police from Sanski Most came, although I'm not certain whether
18 they were reserve policemen or active-duty policemen.
19 MR. KRGOVIC: It was not mentioned in the summary of this witness
20 or in adjudicated fact the role of the police in the specific adjudicated
22 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, this witness was listed as the witness
23 to call to address the adjudicated fact 1145 and that portion which was
24 stricken out. I see no way the Defence could not see that he was going
25 to testify about police involvement.
1 JUDGE HARHOFF: The Chamber agrees. Please move on, Mr. Hannis.
2 MR. HANNIS: I would indicate that the 65 ter summary indicates
3 that about 15 days -- after about 15 days, the police took over guard
5 Q. Was there a difference in how you were treated after the police
6 began guarding you as compared to how you were treated by the soldiers?
7 A. Yes. During the time when we were guarded by the soldiers, our
8 relatives, parents, or our wives could bring food to us, to the hall, and
9 we could talk to them. However, when the police arrived, our relatives
10 could no longer enter, and they started beating us.
11 Q. Who started beating you?
12 A. The policemen who stood guard.
13 Q. Of the police who were guarding you during those last couple of
14 weeks that you were at Krings, did you know or recognise any of them?
15 A. Yes. I knew a young guy of my age. We attended school together.
16 We weren't in the same class, but we frequently ran into each other.
17 Q. Do you recall his name or nickname?
18 A. I think his first name is Srecko, and I'm not sure whether that's
19 actually his first name or his nickname. In any case, he lived in the
20 building across the street from the high school centre in Sanski Most.
21 Q. And anyone else that you recognised among the policemen?
22 A. I was only 20 then, and I didn't know many people in Sanski Most.
23 Q. While you were detained there, were you interrogated?
24 A. Towards the end of the month I spent there, we were interrogated
25 for a day by the policemen.
1 Q. Did you recognise any of the policemen that interrogated you?
2 A. During the interrogation, some other policemen came who I believe
3 were more senior to those reserve of policemen. I knew one of them from
4 before since my uncle had been a policeman in Sanski Most. Occasionally
5 would I see that particular policeman whose wife was a secretary in the
6 high school. I think he was -- his name was Drago Macura, although I
7 believe Macura is only his nickname. In any case, he was strongly built
8 and had a moustache. I remember him well.
9 Q. Thank you. Now, you mentioned while the police were guarding you
10 that there were some beatings. How were these beatings carried out?
11 What were they done with, if you know. Was it feet and hands, or were
12 any instruments used?
13 A. Yes. I remember they used batons a lot, rifle butts, fists,
14 feet, a rod that is otherwise used to clean a rifle. They also used that
15 to hit us with.
16 Q. Did you know a man named Ejub Masic?
17 A. Ejub Masic. I didn't know that man. In any case, he was brought
18 in front of the hall one evening where he was beaten up. Later on, they
19 threw him inside. The next day, the next morning, when we awoke he was
21 Q. And when you say they threw him inside, who -- who was guarding
22 you at the time this event occurred?
23 A. Well, he was brought in front of the hall, beaten up and then
24 thrown inside the hall, and at that point in time we were guarded by the
25 policemen. The army had already gone.
1 Q. Did you see who did the actual beating in front of the hall?
2 A. I couldn't see that since the hall was closed and it was dark
3 outside. Even when he was thrown inside, I couldn't make out who threw
4 him in.
5 Q. Thank you. Now, after your month of being detained at Krings,
6 what happened to you? Where did you go?
7 A. Before my release, I had been interrogated by those
8 higher-ranking policemen, as I said. They wanted to know where I had
9 been, where I had weapons, what I did. And after that, all those 40 men
10 who had been there since day one were released. I think everyone was
11 released, because I was among the last ones to be released.
12 Q. Had you had any weapons or engaged in any fighting?
13 A. No.
14 Q. Thank you, Witness. I don't have any further questions for you.
15 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you. Before the Defence begins its
16 cross-examination, I just have one question for the witness relating to
17 the interrogations that you mentioned, and my question is if any beatings
18 or maltreatment took place during the interrogations.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe so. When I was being
20 interrogated, the policeman I mentioned, Drago Macura, kept moving from
21 one room to the next. There were several policemen interrogating us at
22 the same time. He entered our room and asked the policeman interrogating
23 me whether he needed help when interrogating. But whoever -- it implied
24 beating me up, because he was holding a bat. The policeman responded
25 negatively, and at that time he didn't hit me.
1 JUDGE HARHOFF: But did you hear any beatings going on in the
2 adjacent rooms where other interrogations were made or were going on?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When I returned to the hall after
4 the interrogation, we talked about it, and some people told me that they
5 were well beaten up.
6 JUDGE HARHOFF: Thank you.
7 Mr. Krgovic.
8 Cross-examination by Mr. Krgovic:
9 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, sir.
10 A. Good afternoon.
11 Q. My name is Dragan Krgovic and I appear on behalf of Stojan
12 Zupljanin. I will have some questions of you regarding your testimony.
13 Just one or two words of warning. Since we understand each other and use
14 the same language, please wait for a moment or two before answering so as
15 to avoid any overlap.
16 Another thing, when I'm done putting my questions, please look at
17 the red light on my microphone, because you enjoy certain protective
19 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Do we have voice and face
20 distortion? Very well then.
21 Q. I just didn't want anyone else to hear your voice, but you can
22 disregard this remark.
23 I would start from the end of the Prosecutor's questions. If I
24 understood well, in the hall at Krings itself, there were no
25 interrogations. You were taken outside to be interrogated; is that
2 A. Yes. It took place in a small building in front of the hall
3 where there used to be offices of those who were in charge of the
4 company. On the photographs I was shown, that building is no more.
5 Q. That is how I understood it. So in the hall itself there was no
6 interrogation. You were taken outside into that building where the
7 policeman interrogated you, following which you were returned into the
8 hall; correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. They wanted to know about your movements in the past few months
11 and whether you had any weapons, as well as whether you took part in
12 combat or in any way assisted or abetted this organisation of support
13 offered by the Muslim population in that area.
14 A. Yes. They wanted to know if I knew who had weapons and who fired
15 them. Since I had learned earlier on that some people from my village
16 had been killed, I simply told them that those were the people who had
18 Q. I looked at your statement where I believe you mention your
19 personal weapons. I believe you said that you had a handgun which you
20 handed over to your neighbour when there was a request to hand over
21 weapons. Do you recall that?
22 A. I don't.
23 Q. That is actually your testimony --
24 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, can I have a precise reference, because
25 I think his testimony was that his relative had a gun and he passed that
1 gun to someone else. So can we have a page number?
2 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] It is 8054.
3 Q. I believe you said that it was your father, if I understand the
4 testimony well, had a weapon that was given to a neighbour who in turn
5 handed it over to the Serbs.
6 A. Are you referring to my previous testimony?
7 Q. Yes.
8 A. The weapon was given to him, and the man took it to Klijevci, the
9 neighbouring village where the Serb army was, and that man never
11 Q. Were you also asked about that particular piece? I suppose your
12 father had a licence for it?
13 A. It was not a licensed gun. I don't know whether they aimed for
14 that or whether they wanted to know whether I had been in the armed
15 forces or something else. I don't know.
16 Q. In response to my learned friend's question about when you
17 arrived in the Krings Hall, I -- you said something that I wanted to link
18 to a certain document. I would like to show you the document indicating
19 the date as of which the centre existed.
20 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have P391 shown to
21 the witness.
22 Q. I don't believe you have had occasion to see this document
23 before, not even in proofing. In any case, this was an SJB Sanski Most
24 report on the existence of such centres following a request of the CSB in
25 Banja Luka. It is stated therein that there had been a centre in the gym
1 which was then emptied and that as of the 1st of August, 1992, the gym is
2 empty, and another collection centre was established in the hall of the
3 Krings factory. So my question to you is whether before arriving at
4 Krings you had been in this gym, or did you come to Krings from your
5 place of residence?
6 A. Do you mean whether I was in the gym?
7 Q. Yes.
8 A. No.
9 Q. Do you recall the date when you were released from Krings?
10 A. I think it's in my statement. I can't recall the date now, but I
11 think I left Sanski Most on the 18th of August, and before leaving Sanski
12 Most I spent some two weeks with a relative there. So I'd say it was in
13 early August.
14 Q. Another question. If you look at the next paragraph of this
15 document, it is stated that the prison was established as well as a
16 warden appointed, and that the staff came from the reserve police force
17 and the TO. Do you know of any such warden at the Krings?
18 A. Yes. It was a young policeman. When the police arrived as
19 opposed to the other policeman, he had a full police uniform, a fatigue,
20 a camouflage police uniform, actually. I think he mentioned his first
21 and last name, but it escapes me now. He was a handsome guy, dark
22 haired, and I believe he said he had worked in the prison in Bosanska
23 Gradiska or in Bosanska Gradiska itself.
24 Q. In the prison there?
25 A. Well, I don't know whether he worked in the prison, but I think
1 by occupation he was a policeman.
2 Q. Regarding the facility where you were held, please look at the
3 next page of this document. Have a look at the fourth paragraph from the
4 top. The report describes the conditions at Krings.
5 A. The fourth paragraph? Can you please be more specific?
6 Q. The fourth paragraph from the top. It begins with "The
7 accommodation of all persons -- all persons were quartered in the solidly
8 built facilities of the sports hall."
9 Yes. There is a mention made of the conditions. It is said that
10 the prisoners were given blankets and something to lie on, as well as
11 other things brought by their families.
12 A. At the beginning when we arrived there, there was nothing in the
13 hall. There were only pallets which we put on the floor so as not to
14 sleep on the concrete floor. Later on our mothers and families brought
15 some blankets or Styrofoam sheets, but in any case, there were no
16 amenities that could be used for sleeping.
17 Q. And it goes on in the following paragraph where we see about the
18 gymnasium and Krings, that food was provided by the relatives of the
20 A. While I was there, my mother fed me. I didn't receive anything
21 from the Red Cross. However, there were many more people, and I don't
22 know whether they got anything from the Red Cross.
23 Q. The last paragraph says:
24 "During their stay, persons in the collection and investigation
25 centre received adequate medical care from the Sanski Most health centre,
1 the personnel of which visited the prisoners and offered essential health
2 care services."
3 Where you seen by a doctor or a nurse from those facilities?
4 A. Let me give you an example. There was a Muslim detained with us.
5 I believe his name was Enes Karabeg. He was a doctor by profession. He
6 still works there as a doctor today. There was a man who was in great
7 pain, because while he was asleep some bug entered his ear, and then he
8 banged on the door to call the guards because he wanted somebody to
9 remove that bug because he was in great pain. They took him away, and
10 later on it was all right. But we weren't visited inside by any medical
12 Q. And my last question: Answering the question of the Prosecutor,
13 you mentioned that man who was brought to your hall and died on the next
14 day. You said to the Prosecutor that you didn't see him being beaten up
15 or who beat him. You only saw him when he was brought inside.
16 A. He was beaten just outside the hall. We could hear the beating
17 and those who mistreated him swearing and him giving cries of pain.
18 However, I didn't see who brought him in because it was dark.
19 Q. But he was not one of those who were detained with you in that
20 same hall?
21 A. From before, no. He was brought on that evening, and he died
22 before the morning.
23 Q. And finally, after the interrogation, when you said that you had
24 nothing to do with any military activity you were released; right?
25 A. Yes. After the interrogation, I received a letter of release
1 from that facility, and that made it possible for me to leave and go to
2 Sanski Most.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have no further
6 MR. CVIJETIC: [Interpretation] No questions for this witness,
7 Your Honours.
8 JUDGE HALL: Anything in redirect, Mr. Hannis?
9 MR. HANNIS: Just a few if I may.
10 Re-examination by Mr. Hannis:
11 Q. Regarding the man who was beaten outside and who later died, did
12 the entire beating take place outside the hall?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And you mentioned the interrogations. How many times or days
15 were you interrogated during your 30 days of detention in Krings?
16 A. I was interrogated on one day for about 10 to 15 minutes.
17 Q. And who -- who took you to and from Krings when you were taken to
18 the interrogation office?
19 A. Then they were all police officers. There was no more army
20 around. They were the guards and also the ones who came. They must have
21 been inspectors or I don't know what. They also interrogated us.
22 Q. And how far were those offices where the interrogations were done
23 from where you were detained? Were those offices on the same grounds or
24 premises as the big building we saw in the picture?
25 A. The small building was some 10 to 15 metres away from the hall,
1 but it was part of the overall facility of the whole compound. There
2 were offices in there, so I suppose it was used for the administration,
3 but it was only some 10 to 15 metres away, as I said.
4 Q. And lastly, the man who was beaten and thrown in and then dead
5 the next morning, did anyone ask for medical treatment for him during the
6 night, do you know?
7 A. No one of us did because we didn't dare.
8 Q. Why not?
9 A. Because everybody was afraid for themselves. Nobody expected him
10 to die. We thought that he would recover.
11 Q. I have no more questions for you.
12 JUDGE HALL: Well, Mr. Witness, this is the end of your
13 testimony. You're now released. We wish you a safe journey home, and
14 the Chamber records its appreciation for your coming to give evidence and
15 notes the suffering that -- that you experienced at the time, and we
16 empathise with you. Thank you, sir.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would like to thank everybody.
18 JUDGE HALL: So, Mr. Hannis, that is it for today?
19 MR. HANNIS: It is, Your Honour. I think we have another
20 witness, but I don't know that it makes sense to try and start him and do
21 20 minutes. I think it would be better just to start first thing Monday
23 JUDGE HALL: Yes. Okay. So we'll -- the witness may be escorted
24 from the room, and then we'll properly take the adjournment in open
1 [The witness withdrew]
2 JUDGE HALL: Yes. Thank you. If you could assist in raising the
3 shutters. Thank you.
4 So we take the adjournment and resume at 9.00 on Monday morning.
5 I trust everyone has a safe weekend.
6 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.09 p.m.
7 to be reconvened on Monday, the 11th day
8 of October, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.