1 Friday, 16 July 2004
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
6 JUDGE LIU: Call the case please, Mr. Court Deputy.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is Case Number
8 IT-02-60-T, the Prosecutor versus Vidoje Blagojevic and Dragan Jokic.
9 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
10 Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.
11 Good morning, Witness.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
13 JUDGE LIU: Would you please make the solemn declaration in
14 accordance with the paper Mr. Usher is showing to you.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
16 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
17 WITNESS: TANACKO TANIC
18 [Witness answered through interpreter]
19 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. You may sit down, please.
20 Yes, Mr. Stojanovic.
21 Examined by Mr. Stojanovic:
22 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, sir.
23 A. Good morning.
24 Q. Can you hear me?
25 A. Yes, I can.
1 Q. Could you please tell us your first and last name?
2 A. My name is Tanacko Tanic.
3 Q. Could you please spell your first and last name for the
5 A. T-a-n-a-c-k-o T-a-n-i-c.
6 Q. Mr. Tanic, could you please tell us when and where you were born.
7 A. I was born on the 10th of April, 1955, in the settlement of
9 Q. Where is Tabanci.
10 A. Tabanci is about 12 kilometres on the Zvornik/Bijeljina road.
11 Q. In which municipality is this?
12 A. The municipality of Zvornik.
13 Q. Mr. Tanic, before we move to specific topics, I just wanted to ask
14 you some general things for the benefit of the Trial Chamber. Have you
15 already provided a statement to the Prosecutor's office?
16 A. Yes, in 2002, in June it was, as a suspect.
17 Q. Did they warn you of your suspect status?
18 A. I received a summons, but I don't know exactly how it all goes.
19 In the summons it said that I was called for an interview as a suspect.
20 Q. Were you ever officially informed that you were no longer a
22 A. No, I did not.
23 Q. Regardless of being informed that you have the status of a
24 suspect, you agreed to come here and to tell the truth?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. You are aware of the fact that you have the status of a suspect?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Is it true that you asked me to ask the Court to have some parts
4 of your testimony as -- through private session?
5 A. Yes, because the situation in the republic where I live is still
6 not so open so that you are able to publicly speak the truth. There has
7 been a change in the relationships after the war. Some participants in
8 the war have become the richest people there. They have a monopoly, so
9 certain consequences arise out of speaking openly and there would be
10 nobody special who could protect me in such a case.
11 Q. Thank you very much, Mr. Tanic. I will ask the Trial Chamber to
12 allow certain parts of your testimony to be given in private session.
13 Could you please tell us about your education and something about your
15 A. I completed my elementary school in Kozluk. This is 2 kilometres
16 away from Tabanci. I completed the economic high school in Zvornik. And
17 in 1978 I graduated from the faculty of economy in Novi Sad.
18 JUDGE LIU: If the witness still has the status of suspect, he's
19 entitled to have a lawyer present in these proceedings. Would you please
20 ask this witness whether he will waive his right to have a lawyer present
21 while giving testimony in this case, Mr. Stojanovic.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Mr. Tanic, this is something that we discussed yesterday. Are you
24 prepared to testify today without the presence of your lawyer?
25 A. Yes, I am.
1 Q. Perhaps this is a good opportunity to tell you that if you think
2 that any of the questions is of such a nature that can bring you into a
3 touchy or delicate situation, you have the right not to answer such a
4 question. Do you understand that?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
8 MR. McCLOSKEY: Excuse me, Mr. President. If we are going this
9 far, I think it's also important that this witness should know that
10 anything he say can and will be used against him in a courtroom as well.
11 This is not something I've always brought up for all suspects, but since
12 it's been started I think it's probably a good idea to give him that
13 right. And there's also of course the right that he has to -- if he
14 chooses to remain silent, the Court has the right to order him to speak.
15 And in that event, material would not normally be able to be used against
16 him, certainly not in this court and perhaps not in other international
18 JUDGE LIU: Yes, I think that's the other side of the coin.
19 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can we go on,
20 Your Honour?
21 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
22 Witness, did you hear what the -- Mr. Prosecutor said just now?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. It's not a problem because I
24 said that I would speak the truth. And in principle, I have nothing to be
25 afraid of.
1 JUDGE LIU: Just warning, nothing else, is to let you know the
2 situation, the overall situation.
3 Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, you may proceed.
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
5 Q. Tane, could you please speak a little more slowly when you're
6 answering the questions because everything has to be translated,
7 everything that you're saying. Is that all right?
8 Once you completed the faculty of economics, where did you go on
9 from there?
10 A. I began to work in Karakaj, one of the enterprises, it was called
11 Univerzal, and then I moved to another firm. When the war broke out I was
12 working in the TG Birac.
13 Q. What did you do as part of your work?
14 A. In the TG Birac I was a person who analysed and planned
16 Q. Up until the war broke out, did you serve your regular military
18 A. Yes. I served my regular military duty in 1980.
19 Q. Did you have any ranks? What did you do? And where were you in
20 the army?
21 A. I served my military term in Zrenjanin. I was there for six
22 months in the medical corps. I was a regular soldier. And then I was
23 transferred to Bihac where I served for another five months.
24 Q. Is Bihac in Bosnia and Herzegovina?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Did you get married?
2 A. After I served my regular military term, I got married.
3 Q. Where is your wife from?
4 A. My wife is from Bihac.
5 Q. And which ethnicity is she?
6 A. Her father is a Muslim and her mother is a Serb from Lika.
7 Q. Mr. Tanic, when the war broke out did you join the army? Were you
8 militarily active?
9 A. When the war started up until late April, I wasn't engaged in any
10 units. When Zvornik fell, I was not in the army. In the latter part of
11 April, I received my mobilisation summons and then I reported to the
12 barracks. This was in the second half of April.
13 Q. Mr. Tanic, did the Army of Republika Srpska exist at that time or
14 was this the TO that you're talking about?
15 A. As far as I know, this was still the TO.
16 Q. Did you receive any specific tasks in the army?
17 A. No, I didn't get any specific tasks. When I arrived there, we
18 spent several days in the barracks without any duties. And then
19 afterwards when we were organised as the Zvornik detachment during the
20 military review, one of the superior officers -- I told one of the
21 superior officers that I couldn't do that. The way they phrased it: God
22 help us heroes, and are we going to go to Divic and so on. I told them I
23 couldn't do that. I told my colleagues who were in the line-up together
24 with me. And they said, well, you should tell them. They told me that I
25 should inform somebody about this.
1 Q. To tell them what?
2 A. That I couldn't go and take part in this war the way it was being
3 done. The way it began was very ugly. There was a lot of looting and
4 robberies. This is something that was not for me. I was not suited to
5 anything like that.
6 Q. So did you tell somebody about that?
7 A. Yes, I told this man called Ljubomir Tesanovic that I couldn't do
8 that. And he simply told me: Well, that's not a problem. There's work
9 for you as well. That day, from that unit, it was only myself and another
10 man who said that we did not wish to participate in this.
11 Q. Could you please tell us what period this was.
12 A. This was sometime before the action on Kula, so it was sometime
13 around the 21st or the 22nd of April. I'm not sure exactly.
14 Q. You said at one point that the officer at the time, Tesanovic,
15 said that there is other work for you?
16 A. Yes, that is correct.
17 Q. Could you please tell us if you received any specific assignments
18 after that, after you did not agree to join the armed combat.
19 A. Shortly before this action against Kula, whatever it's called, I
20 was informed that I can stay in the barracks if I took a broom and started
21 to sweep. So I took the broom and began sweeping. I agreed to do that.
22 I did this work up until late October, 1992.
23 Q. Was that, in your opinion, some kind of retaliation or response
24 because you refused to take up arms and go to the front?
25 A. Well, at the time it suited me. I would not be participating in
1 actions; I would stay there. It didn't matter that I had to sweep the
2 floor. There were other tasks perhaps. The brigade was in the process of
3 being formed, but I didn't really expect them to help me very much there.
4 Q. From October 1992, what tasks did they assign to you?
5 A. From October 1992 - I think it was October at least - I moved to
6 the finances of the brigade and worked there as a cashier. And I was also
7 chief of finances there for a time up until June or July 1993.
8 Q. Could you tell us briefly what your job entailed.
9 A. Well, quite simply, I worked with information gathering from the
10 terrain through personnel about the situation in the battalions; that's
11 how it was organised. And then on the basis of the money coming in and
12 the lists we had, through the clerks, I would hand out the money. And
13 they would give me a receipt for what I had issued.
14 Q. Who secured the financial resources for the army?
15 A. Well, I can't be quite specific, but from the very beginning it
16 went through the municipality. The municipality provided the financial
17 resources every month. Later on - I don't know exactly when - but it went
18 by the corps through the state, the army -- actually the Army of
19 Republika Srpska.
20 Q. Were the officers paid in the same way, paid their salaries in the
21 same way?
22 A. Active duty officers or rather officers of the Jugoslav army did
23 not receive salaries from the funds that were allotted to us from the
24 municipality and from the corps.
25 Q. In that year 1993, who was the command of the Zvornik Brigade?
1 A. In 1993 the commander of the brigade was Vinko Pandurevic, from
2 the end of 1992.
3 Q. In the command of the Zvornik Brigade, did you stay there
4 throughout the war?
5 A. Yes. Throughout the whole war with an interruption in July when I
6 went to carry out some other assignments for 30 or 40 days in the TG of
8 Q. Could you tell us who you were subordinated to, who did you work
9 for, who did you belong to formation and establishment-wise.
10 A. Well, with respect to the finances, the finances were under the
11 direct control of the brigade commander, or rather, the assistant
12 commander for the rear, for logistics, when he wasn't there. Then ...
13 Q. Did you belong to the logistics department or the logistics
15 A. Well, I don't really know. I wasn't interested in the
16 establishment of it and what formation I belonged to, but I was
17 responsible to the brigade commander for the situation in the financial
18 department and the cash flow. And then I had chief of finance in the next
19 part of 1993 when I remained the cashier.
20 JUDGE LIU: So we are still in 1993? Yes.
21 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] We're drawing to a close,
22 Your Honour. Yes.
23 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
24 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. From that year 1992 until 1995, were you in any armed struggle at
1 all, any armed combat?
2 A. I was never in any armed combat at all. I did go once and I said
3 that in my first statement I took money up to the front line on one
4 occasion. That was above Srebrenica. It might have been precisely in
5 1993 when they parachuted packages into the area. And perhaps another
6 occasion, but I was carrying money. I didn't take part in any fighting.
7 I went up to the front line to take the money there.
8 Q. Mr. Tanic, during the war years from 1992 to 1995, did you ever
9 meet Dragan Jokic?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Could you tell us please when you met him and how you met him?
12 A. Well, I met Dragan Jokic through his sister because she worked
13 together with me in Standard, the Standard company, as a cashier.
14 Q. And was his sister there throughout the war as well?
15 A. She stayed there -- but actually she wasn't there until the end of
16 the war because she went on maternity leave to give birth.
17 Q. Do you know why she didn't come back to the army after the
18 maternity leave? Did she come into conflict with Obrenovic at all? Did
19 she quarrel with him?
20 A. I don't know. I really can't say.
21 Q. What was your impression of Dragan Jokic? What kind of man was
23 A. Well, in addition to me working with his sister, we got to know
24 each other and had connections because he was an active officer in Bihac
25 and his wife was from Bihac. So we would joke now and again, and meet now
1 and again. And talking to his sister and talking to him I condemned the
2 war, of course. And I tried to evade them as much as I could. Of course,
3 we did exchange opinions about the situation. We agreed on some points
4 but not on all of them of course. You can't avoid some issues; if you're
5 there, you can't run away.
6 Q. In talking to him did you ever hear him express nationalistic
7 feelings and hatred toward another nation or ethnic group? Did he condemn
8 the Muslim nation at all?
9 A. No. He knew through his sister that my wife was a Muslim, but
10 that was never raised. And between 1992 and 1993, that was a fairly
11 unfortunate set of circumstances. I sort of buried my head in the sand
12 and pretended nobody knew about it, but most people did know.
13 Q. Was Dragan Jokic an ambitious career officer?
14 A. No, not at all. At the beginning of the war and at the end of the
15 war he remained with the same rank. He had the same rank. The others who
16 came later were promoted far faster.
17 Q. Could you tell us, please, in that year of 1995, the month of
18 June, were you in the command of the Zvornik Brigade then, too?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Can you tell us where you were, where was your office located?
21 A. As far as my office and the premises are concerned -- are you
22 asking about 1995?
23 Q. Yes, 1995.
24 A. Well, in 1995 my offices were on the ground floor opposite the
25 legal department offices of the military police.
1 Q. Could you tell us, please, who was the commander and chief of
2 staff at the time in the Zvornik Brigade, and I'm talking about July 1995.
3 A. The commander, as far as I know, was Vinko Pandurevic. And the
4 chief of staff was Dragan Obrenovic.
5 Q. Was it an organised command? Did you have any morning duties in
6 the military sense?
7 A. It was exceptionally well-organised. The barracks were organised
8 as a proper military barracks. And every morning we raised the flag and
9 had a review of the rear units. And in the evening, the flag would be
10 lowered. We had the same ceremony. And after the review of troops before
11 breakfast, there would be a session of reporting to the commander at
12 7.00 a.m.
13 Q. Would you tell us who conducted the review of troops and lined the
14 troops up. Who conducted this part of the affairs, military affairs?
15 A. As far as the review of troops was concerned it was due to the
16 brigade commander who did this and in his absence it was the chief of
17 staff. And the troops were lined up by the duty officer in the barracks.
18 Q. Was that the usual customary daily procedure?
19 A. Yes. Every single day.
20 Q. Thank you. I would now like to move on and focus your attention
21 to some questions that have to do with specific dates. Do you remember
22 those days when Srebrenica fell, that is to say the middle of July 1995?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Do you happen to remember where you yourself were and what tasks
25 and assignments you were performing?
1 A. From July -- actually from July onwards I was working as the
2 cashier in the financial department of the brigade.
3 Q. How did you come to learn of the fall of Srebrenica?
4 A. Well, quite simply -- actually, before Srebrenica fell there were
5 units there, they were gathering. I saw some before Srebrenica. And then
6 afterwards, a day or two later, information arrived -- or it didn't
7 arrive. We heard that Srebrenica had been taken over, taken control of
8 and fallen.
9 Q. Let me ask you by the by, were you in charge of any weapons or
10 issued any weapons? Did you have any weapons actually?
11 A. Well, behind my cashier's desk I did have a rifle, an M-48.
12 Q. And where were you on the 14th of July?
13 A. On the 14th of July, I was in Standard, the barracks.
14 Q. Do you happen to remember whether there were the usual activities
15 of lining up the troops, raising the flag, and so on, on that particular
17 A. I really can't say about that morning, probably there was because
18 we never missed a day so I assume that happened that day, too.
19 Q. Where did you spend the morning hours of that day, the 14th of
21 A. In the Standard compound, in my offices, in the compound itself,
23 Q. Did you happen to notice any unusual activity on that morning of
24 the 14th of July?
25 A. Nothing special, except that there was this general commotion over
1 Srebrenica. And I don't know. There were -- there was different
2 information coming in about the fighting above Srebrenica and the forests
3 there and the problems, so that kind of thing, yes.
4 Q. Thank you.
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] May we go into private session
6 now for a moment, please, Your Honour, just briefly for a portion of the
8 JUDGE LIU: Yes. We'll go to private session.
9 [Private session]
12 Pages 11994 – redacted – private session.
12 Page 11995 – redacted – private session.
20 [Open session]
21 JUDGE LIU: Now we are in open session. You may proceed.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
23 Q. Mr. Tanackovic -- Tanic, excuse me, do you recall whether at any
24 time you had contacts with the duty operation officers in the
25 Zvornik Brigade command for the purposes of your job?
1 A. No, never, except if they had a message from the commander to pass
2 on to me telling me to do something. But they themselves did not have the
3 capacity to issue orders to me.
4 Q. Why do you say that the duty operations officer could not issue
5 orders to you?
6 A. Well, simply because the duty operations officer had the task of
7 collecting and passing on information. And at the briefings at 7.00 a.m.,
8 he would report on the situation in the battalions, who was requesting
9 what and so on and so forth. And then on the basis of that and of our
10 reports, the commander would issue tasks to all those present.
11 Q. Did Dragan Jokic as the duty operations officer ever issue a
12 personal order to you, or rather, had he done that would you have been
13 duty-bound to respect it, to comply with it?
14 A. No, no.
15 Q. Was there also a barracks duty officer at the time?
16 A. Yes. The barracks duty officer lined up the troops, organised the
17 review and the raising and lowering of the flag.
18 Q. Do you recall whether on that day new conscripts were being seen
19 off to the army in the barracks compound in Zvornik?
20 A. It's possible, but I can't recall whether that happened precisely
21 on that day. But it is possible, yes.
22 Q. Very well. I wanted to ask you what happened next. Did you go
23 and take up the task of guarding those prisoners?
24 A. Yes, I did. I took my rifle. I got into a little van. There
25 were five or six of us. The shift, they knew me and I probably knew them
1 at that time. But so much time has passed that I can't now recall all the
2 names of the people who were there. They all knew me because it was I who
3 gave out the money and they would come to see me for their pay slips and
4 such like. But right now I can't recall who the men were that I went with
5 in that little van.
6 Q. Were you told what the fate of those prisoners was to be?
7 A. No.
8 Q. Would you tell me whether any of the officers or senior officers
9 of the Zvornik Brigade was in that vehicle?
10 A. I don't remember seeing any of the officers.
11 Q. Were you sitting in front or in the back with the men?
12 A. In the back with the men.
13 Q. And where did you go?
14 A. We arrived at the school in Orahovac.
15 Q. Did those soldiers get out of the vehicle with you?
16 A. Yes, they did.
17 Q. Do you know what unit these men belonged to if you don't know them
19 A. I don't know, but I think it was the shift from Jelacici. I don't
20 know if it can be established now what group that was.
21 Q. Will you tell us where this place Jelacici is?
22 A. I don't know. I was never up there because it was towards the
23 line in the direction of Sekovici. But I don't know precisely because I
24 was never there. I just remembered the names.
25 Q. When you arrived in Orahovac, did you see any officers or
1 commanders there?
13 : (Private Session)
12 Page 12000 – redacted – private session.
12 Page 12001 – redacted – private session.
5 [Open session]
16 Q. While you were in front of the school, did you observe that they
17 had started taking prisoners away?
18 A. Yes. I forgot to mention that there were already two dead on the
19 playground covered up, probably in their own clothes. This was on the
20 playground. And I saw a heap of clothes in front of the entrance to the
21 gym. I think there was a crutch there as well. And they had already
22 started boarding the truck. That was when I went to sit on the school
24 Q. Were you present when the two prisoners of war were executed?
25 A. No. They were already dead when I arrived.
1 Q. Were there any protests? Was there any anger? Were there any
2 demands made by the prisoners that they should not leave the gym?
3 A. I don't know what happened. I know that at one point there was
4 talk of all of them going to be exchanged. They were persuaded to get on
5 to the truck, and then they were taken off to the execution site.
6 Q. At any point did you see any building construction machinery
8 A. No.
9 Q. Will you tell me what was used to take the prisoners away from the
10 gym, what kind of vehicle.
11 A. I saw a small truck.
12 Q. Was it a military or a civilian truck?
13 A. I couldn't say. The tarpaulin on military trucks was not always
14 the proper colour for military trucks, so I wouldn't know.
15 Q. At one point you said you went up to the school?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. What was the reason? Why did you go away from the place where the
18 prisoners were being boarded on to a truck?
19 A. Well, I didn't want to hang around there. I didn't want to be
20 close to that. I simply moved off as far as I was able, to get out of the
22 Q. Did you have any authority that would have allowed you to prevent
23 anything like that?
24 A. Certainly not. In the war, I did only what I had to. I had no
25 authority. I tried to get through the war in the best way possible.
1 Q. Did you at any point see executions and killings of prisoners of
2 war being carried out in front of the gym?
3 A. No, I didn't.
4 Q. How far is the house to which you went from the gym?
5 A. It's in the back behind the gym, not very far from it.
6 Q. You said at one point what the name was of the man into whose
7 house you went. Do you remember it now?
8 A. After that I went to Mira Vidovic, the municipality cashier. I
9 knew her and so I dropped in and stayed there until about 11.00 p.m. I
10 told the men to pick me up on their way back.
11 Q. From the house where you were, could you hear gunfire?
12 A. No. The second house was further away. First I went to a
13 forester's house, and when I had had some brandy I went to see Mira. And
14 I sat there until the evening, until 11.00 p.m. approximately. I didn't
15 have a watch, but it was already getting dark. So it was certainly past
16 9.00 and more than that.
17 Q. From that place could you hear any gunfire?
18 A. Not while I was inside the house, but when I got out of the house
19 intending to perhaps walk to the barracks, I had hardly passed 100 metres
20 when I heard firing from the up above where Streliste was and the side.
21 And then I stopped. I thought someone might hit me. I might be hit by a
22 stray bullet. So I waited there for someone I knew to come by and give me
23 a lift.
24 Q. Was this synchronised or random shooting?
25 A. I couldn't say now, but certainly you could hear shooting, both
1 above Orahovac and from the side. Yes, you could hear gunfire.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, could we just go
3 into private session for a minute because of the questions that I am about
4 to ask.
5 JUDGE LIU: Yes. We'll go to private session, please.
6 [Private session]
9 [Open session]
10 JUDGE LIU: Now we are in open session. You may proceed.
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Mr. Tanic, at one point you said that the people condemned what
13 was going on?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. What is this conclusion of yours based on?
16 A. It's based on the fact that, for example, I lived in a village and
17 90 per cent of the people there were saying: What is going on? Why is
18 this being done? Perhaps there were about 10 people who would say things
19 like: They should all be killed, and so on. But I believe it was a small
20 number of people who were prepared to do that, and this was obvious.
21 Q. You personally at that point, in that place, did you condemn such
23 A. Yes. In conversations and also just when I was thinking to
24 myself. At one point I thought: Well, it's not a problem if I took a
25 rifle and killed a Serb or two. But then what would happen? Then they
1 would beat me up and push me around a little bit and what would happen?
2 Nothing. Now ten years later when I think back about it, if I had done
3 something like that it wouldn't have meant anything much at the time, it
4 wouldn't have made a difference, but I was outraged at the events that
5 were going on, especially because there were children involved and so on.
6 Q. Mr. Tanic, I have been told that not everything that you said is
7 in the transcript. Were you afraid that you would also get killed?
8 A. Had I, for example, taken it upon myself to say: What are you
9 doing and tried to kill somebody, of course my own people would have tried
10 to kill me back. I was outraged because of these events. But as an
11 individual, I couldn't do much. People of authority in that place and
12 other places where this was going on could have done something because the
13 mood of the -- the public mood was against these things.
14 Q. At one point you said that there were also young men there, young
16 A. I saw two young boys who were carrying water. When my van stopped
17 in the evening, there was a boy of 7 or 8 years old who had survived the
18 executions. When we entered the Standard compound he was saying he was
19 from Srebrenica, asking where his father was. We went out and they took
20 the boy to the hospital.
21 Q. I wanted to ask you: What time of day was it when you walked from
22 Orahovac towards the barracks?
23 A. Let's say it was about 10.30.
24 Q. How far is the barracks from Orahovac?
25 A. I don't know, about 8 kilometres approximately. I don't know.
1 Q. The fact that you went on foot, is that the result of your
2 intention to leave that place at any price?
3 A. It was already late. I left those killing fields and I was just
4 looking for a way to go home -- actually to go to Standard. There was no
5 way to go home. I went to the road and then I thought, well, I'll just
6 start walking and perhaps, who knows, somebody will pass by.
7 Q. Can you please tell us which vehicle was it? Who was operating
8 that vehicle? Did you know that soldier?
9 A. The driver was Gotovac, Djordje Gotovac.
10 Q. Was he coming back from Orahovac or from positions?
11 A. From Orahovac. He was at the killing site in Orahovac.
12 Q. How many soldiers were there in that vehicle?
13 A. Well, that's a bit difficult to say. I cannot remember. I know I
14 was there; that young man; Mihajlo Stevanovic was there; then probably
15 Sreten was there; Miladin Mijatovic. I'm not sure.
16 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter didn't understand the last
17 sentence the witness said.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. When you left the house and started walking towards the barracks,
20 could you still hear the firing?
21 A. Yes.
22 JUDGE LIU: Well, we have some problems with the transcript. The
23 interpreter says that she did not understand the last sentence the witness
24 said. The question is: "How many soldiers were there in that vehicle?"
25 Witness, would you please repeat your answer again.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know I was there, the young man
2 who survived; Mihajlo Stevanovic was there, and well, the driver. I
3 cannot tell you for sure. I'm not sure whether Miladin Mijatovic and
4 Sreten Milosevic were also in the van. I'm not sure. I don't know
6 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
7 Mr. Stojanovic, you may proceed.
8 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Could you please tell us when you came -- when you arrived at the
11 A. I think I got there at 11.30, approximately.
12 Q. Was this on the 14th of July?
13 Once you came to the barracks, where did you go?
14 A. Is this private session?
15 Q. No, not this part.
16 A. We need to move into private session and then I will tell you.
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if we can respect
18 the wishes of the witness --
19 JUDGE LIU: Yes, yes. We'll go to private session.
20 [Private session]
12 [Open session]
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Mr. Tanic, we have information
14 here that on that day, the 14th and the 15th, Dragan Jokic was the duty
15 operations officer in the Zvornik Brigade. Did you ever on that evening
16 have any kind of contact with Dragan Jokic.
17 A. No. No, I didn't. I don't know.
18 Q. Did you see Dragan Jokic anywhere that evening?
19 A. No -- I don't know. I don't remember.
20 Q. Where is the duty operations officer's room?
21 A. That office is on the first floor to the right, the first to the
22 right. Then there's Sreten Milosevic's office and so on.
23 Q. And where is your room? Is that on the first floor? On the
24 ground floor?
25 A. I've already said that it was on the ground floor across from the
1 legal affairs office and the military police office.
2 Q. Did you spend the entire night in your office?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. At one point did you see a bus with prisoners in the barracks
6 A. Yes, I did.
7 Q. Can you please tell us where the bus was.
8 A. As far as I could see, it was in front of the reception area,
9 inside the compound in front of the reception area.
10 Q. Were there people securing the bus, guarding the bus?
11 A. I didn't notice anything in particular, because the military
12 police was manning the gate. So it wasn't any special security. I didn't
13 notice anything special.
14 Q. Did you notice if there were any people in the bus, whether the
15 bus was full?
16 A. Yes. Yes.
17 Q. Did you address any of the people at the reception area, any of
18 the military police personnel?
19 A. I don't remember.
20 Q. Did you ask any questions about the bus with the prisoners?
21 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Since I'm going to move now to
22 the second part of my questions relating to the 15th of July, perhaps,
23 Your Honours, it would be a good point to go on a break.
24 I have been informed that this last answer was not recorded in the
25 transcript. So if you agree I would just like to repeat that question.
1 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Do you remember, Mr. Tanic, if you talked to anybody about the
4 prisoners. Did you show any interest in these prisoners?
5 A. I don't know. I don't think so.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 JUDGE LIU: Well, we'll take a break here, and we'll resume at
8 quarter to 11.00.
9 --- Recess taken at 10.15 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 10.47 a.m.
11 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, please continue your direct
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
14 Q. Mr. Tanic, can you hear me?
15 A. Yes, yes. I can hear you.
16 Q. If you remember we took a break and left off discussing the 14th
17 of July into the 15th when you arrived in the command of the
18 Zvornik Brigade. You remember that, do you?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And you said that you spent the night at the command of the
21 Zvornik Brigade. Is that right?
22 A. Yes, it is.
23 Q. Could you please tell us when you got up. Do you remember whether
24 there were any activities on the morning of the 15th of July?
25 A. Well, I don't know the specifics. There was general commotion, if
1 I can put it that way, that day. I can't really remember whether there
2 was a review of troops or not, but all I can say is that one day there was
3 a troop review and that it was conducted by Pandurevic and that of the
4 members of the military police there were just four or five of them lined
5 up. Because Drago let the others go because there were the deaths and
6 Pandurevic then ordered that everybody should come back. Now, what day
7 that was that happened, I really can't say.
8 Q. Could you tell us why he ordered all the military policemen to
10 A. Well, he was sort of angry and he said: Why did you send them
11 home? They're like chickens -- got killed like chickens, something like
13 Q. On that morning of the 15th of July, did you see Dragan Jokic?
14 A. I don't know.
15 Q. Did you have the duty of informing the duty officer or
16 Dragan Jokic of everything?
17 A. No, I had no obligations vis-a-vis the duty officer.
18 Q. Was it your duty to tell the duty officer what you had done the
19 previous day, that is to say the 14th of July?
20 A. No, I just had the obligation, or rather, my chief was obliged to
21 go and report and submit a report as to what assignments we had carried
22 out on any particular day.
23 Q. Perhaps this is a good opportunity for me to ask you: Who did
24 your chief refer to, report to?
25 A. As 0700 hours, he reported to the brigade commander.
1 Q. And if the brigade commander was absent, who would your chief
2 report to about what your service had done?
3 A. The chief of staff then.
4 Q. And who on the morning of the 15th of July was the chief of staff?
5 A. I think it was Dragan Obrenovic.
6 Q. Could you tell me, please, whether you know that during those days
7 in the Zvornik area there were other mass killings as well?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. How did you come to learn about that and how was the story told
10 and the message conveyed?
11 A. Well, in principle people know everything. You can digress in the
12 Zvornik Brigade and others, but the characteristic thing was that when an
13 operation was being planned, it was the women in the village who knew
14 about this first before even the soldiers. So people knew everything that
15 went on and where it went on. So in my first statement I said that there
16 were 7 or 8.000 killed according to what I knew in the different
17 locations, Kozluk, Branjevo, Djeverici [phoen] or wherever.
18 Q. Was there any information -- official information given to the
19 soldiers that these mass crimes had taken place, or was it just that
20 people commented?
21 A. No. People just commented. There was never anything official,
22 any official publication or anything like that. And they tried to hush
23 things up and stop or lessen the tension and stories and rumours that were
24 going around.
25 Q. And on what basis did you conclude that they tried to hush things
1 up, cover things up?
2 A. Well, if I can put it this way, people realised that everybody
3 knew about it. And then afterwards, some grave sites were found and some
4 were unearthed. And they realised that it was a mistake and that now they
5 had to, if I can put it this way, annul it.
6 Q. So in the talks and tales going around by the army and the
7 soldiers and the locals, did they condemn the operation or support it?
8 A. For the most part, as I've already said, 90 per cent of the
9 people, or rather, a very large number of the inhabitants condemned it and
10 so did the soldiers, condemned what had happened. But this mass of people
11 was not enough to do anything. It wasn't a critical mass large enough to
12 turn things around. And until those people are tried over there, there
13 will be problems.
14 Q. You yourself, Mr. Tanic, did you have the obligation of informing
15 everybody -- anybody about what you did on the 14th?
16 A. No. Because the chief went to report, and he's the only person
17 that I can talk to. But it was common knowledge that I was there. I
18 don't wish to deny it. I was in Orahovac on the 14th, and I'm not
19 challenging that.
20 Q. Now, this position, as you described it a moment ago, was it the
21 reason you decided to come into court here and testify publicly about all
22 those events?
23 A. Yes, except for the portions of my testimony which were given in
24 private session.
25 Q. Yes. We would like to assure you that you have no need to fear;
1 it was in private session. Now, in addition to the fact that you are
2 conscious of being a suspect and the fact that you decided to come here
3 and tell the truth immediately after talking to me, is that right, you
4 have nothing to hide?
5 A. Yes, that's right, I have nothing to hide with respect to
6 Srebrenica and all the rest of it.
7 Q. Did you at any time throughout these events that came to follow
8 after those tragic days hear anything at all about the participation of
9 Dragan Jokic in those activities?
10 A. No. I never heard anything, except for the fact that he went
11 about his business.
12 Q. Did anybody comment and say that Dragan Jokic was in a position to
13 prevent this or stop it?
14 A. No. Nobody said anything along those lines. They wouldn't have
15 taken it seriously. They tried to lessen the importance of people not
16 close to them. That's my conclusion at any rate.
17 Q. Did you yourself suffer any unpleasantness due to the fact that
18 you already had an interview with the Prosecution and that you were on the
19 spot in Orahovac on that 14th of July?
20 A. No, I did not, except I feel the burden of it myself, having been
21 there on that date. Yes, people asked me: Did I say anything, was it
22 recorded, and so on, but I didn't give any comments.
23 Q. I wanted to ask you something about the bus with the prisoners on
24 the 15th before noon. You mentioned the bus. So when you got up on the
25 morning of the 15th, do you remember having seen that bus in the compound
1 of the barracks?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Do you happen to remember when the bus left?
4 A. Well, I don't know. I know that there was some buses, that they
5 were passing by and that the buses were going. They would say: They're
6 going off to Pilica. That's what the stories going around were, but I
7 didn't see it. But I do know that there were buses coming and going and
8 in Pilica they didn't want to receive them, they were returned, sent back.
9 And then I don't know where he ended up, perhaps in Petkovci or wherever.
10 Q. Mr. Tanic, did you ever hear any comments among the soldiers to
11 the effect that Dragan Jokic was the scapegoat in all this prior to his
12 leaving for The Hague?
13 A. Well, in principle people were rather surprised to hear that he is
14 being held responsible in view of the engineer's work he was doing. He
15 wasn't a person who issued orders, so people were surprised.
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Tanic, for being as frank and forthright with your
17 answers. You will now perhaps be asked something by Mr. Karnavas and
18 Ms. Issa from the Prosecution and Their Honours. So I should like to ask
19 you to answer those questions, if there are any, but thank you for coming.
20 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Mr. Stojanovic.
21 Mr. Karnavas, do you have any questions?
22 MR. KARNAVAS: I just may ask a couple of questions.
23 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.
24 Cross-examined by Mr. Karnavas:.
25 Q. Good morning, sir.
1 A. Good morning.
2 Q. You said you were outraged on what you had seen on that particular
3 day on the 14th. Obviously you knew that --
4 JUDGE LIU: Well, well, well, we didn't have the answer in the
6 MR. KARNAVAS: Oh, I'm sorry, Your Honour.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
9 MR. KARNAVAS:
10 Q. So obviously you knew that they were being executed?
11 A. Well, at that point in time when it had already started in
12 Orahovac when I got there and when you could see that they had this
13 intention and that they were sending some for the exchange not to -- they
14 weren't treated as prisoners of war but were executed, that's when I
15 realised. But I couldn't assume anything like that.
16 MR. KARNAVAS: Okay. But at some point while you were --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction, not sending them for
18 an exchange.
19 MR. KARNAVAS:
20 Q. But at some point while you were there you realised that they were
21 going to or were in fact being executed. Correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And that's -- you drew yourself away from those activities, as
24 you've indicated?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. You went to somebody's house and --
2 A. Right behind the school. I didn't leave straight away. I sat
3 behind the school. I saw young boys carrying water and we commented. And
4 then I went to the next building, the gym hall, the sports hall. So I
5 couldn't see what was going on. Then I went to a house that was further
6 away, much further away from that place.
7 Q. Now, before doing that did you ever walk up to Drago Nikolic to
8 try to dissuade him from carrying out these activities?
9 A. No. It never entered my head, never occurred to me.
10 Q. Why not?
11 A. Well, what would I be doing that for? I wasn't in a position to
12 do so. I'm an ordinary soldier and he would have eliminated me straight
13 away. And he'd say I was mad. So how could I go up to him and say:
14 Don't you do that? I didn't have the authority to do that in view of the
15 job I did. I just wasn't in a position to go up to somebody like that and
16 tell him. I could talk to him privately and say: You shouldn't do that.
17 But in that mass of people and once they had already taken the decision
18 themselves - not asking anybody, I don't know who they asked - I wasn't in
19 a position to influence Drago to do anything about it. I just wasn't in a
20 position to do that. It would have been madness on my part. He would
21 have eliminated me either physically or in some other way. Anyway, he
22 would have got rid of me one way or the other.
23 Q. Why do you say that. Why would Drago, as you put it, first-name
24 basis, why would he do something like that to you? After all, who is he
25 or who was he at the time who could do that?
1 A. He was, how do you say that, the security officer in the brigade.
2 Now, what all that entails -- he was in charge of security matters. We
3 called him the security officer in the brigade. But establishment-wise, I
4 don't know his exact position. But as far as I was concerned he looked a
5 bit angry. Maybe he's a good man, I don't know. But I tried to keep out
6 of his way. Just say hello in passing and that would be it. Good day,
7 and that's it. The less contact with him, the better.
8 Q. All right. Do you know who Popovic was at the time or at least
9 what position he held within the VRS?
10 A. I did not know nor did I see him. I didn't know how come an
11 officer was there and who the officer was. And I asked somebody from the
12 military police: Who is that man. And they told me he was Popovic from
13 the corps. And from the corps I just know the man working in the
14 finances, Pajic Damir was his name.
15 Q. Now, when you returned later on that evening you said that you met
16 certain individuals, officers who had been there during the day, ordering
17 and carrying out these executions, correct, when you returned to Standard?
18 A. Is this a private session now? Are we in closed session? Do you
19 want me to --
20 Q. We're not mentioning any names.
21 JUDGE LIU: Maybe at first we should not mention any names. Later
22 on if you need, you have to mention some names, we could easily go into
23 private session.
24 MR. KARNAVAS: I'm not interested in the names of the individuals.
25 Q. I'm just asking: When you came back later on that night you met
1 with those same individuals who had been out there carrying out those
2 executions or ordering those executions?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And that's when they said they were going to have a special
6 A. Well, yes, you've done a good job, that kind of thing.
7 Q. They were congratulating themselves, a job well-done, executing
8 innocent people?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And I take it you were repulsed or outraged by their behaviour as
11 well when they were carrying on in that fashion.
12 A. I refused. I didn't do it.
13 Q. Exactly. And then as I believe you indicated, from there you went
14 to your office where you had a bunk and you went to sleep. You stayed
15 away from them?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I take it you didn't tell anybody regarding these -- what you had
18 seen at Orahovac out of fear?
19 A. No. I said that at home. I told my friends, anyone I knew,
20 everyone I knew. How else could I have gone through this without talking
21 about it? I didn't conceal it, no.
22 Q. Okay. But I'm saying on that specific night. You've already
23 indicated that you never stopped at the duty officer's -- at the operation
24 room to at least inform the duty officer what you had seen and who had
25 carried out what. Right?
1 A. I didn't, no.
2 Q. And you also did not go to Obrenovic's office to tell Obrenovic
3 what you had seen. Right?
4 A. No. No.
5 Q. And he was the acting commander at the time, was he not, since
6 Pandurevic was gone?
7 A. Probably, I don't know any details.
8 Q. Okay.
9 A. I think Pandurevic was in charge of the operation.
10 Q. All right. The killing operation?
11 A. Srebrenica. The taking of Srebrenica. The military operation.
12 Q. All right. But you knew Obrenovic, did you not, by person?
13 A. I didn't. From 1992 to 1995, I knew all of the officers.
14 Q. Right.
15 A. From the lowest ranking to the highest ranking. From the first
16 chief of the TO onwards.
17 Q. Right. I just want to make sure that you knew him. When you saw
18 him, you knew, this is Obrenovic. Right?
19 A. Yes, yes.
20 Q. And you knew his position?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Chief of staff, number two, Pandurevic being number one. Correct?
23 A. Yes. And then there was Sreten Milosevic.
24 Q. Right. Now, on that particular --
25 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Karnavas --
1 MR. KARNAVAS: Yes.
2 JUDGE LIU: There's no need to hurry --
3 MR. KARNAVAS: I apologise.
4 JUDGE LIU: Go step by step.
5 MR. KARNAVAS: I apologise.
6 Q. I apologise if I seem a little bit anxious to you. I'm not.
7 Maybe it's that extra coffee I had during the break.
8 But needless to say I just want to pinpoint a couple of issues.
9 When you came back you never went to Obrenovic's office, chief of staff,
10 to say: Mr. Obrenovic, major, whatever he was at the time, there's
11 killings going on in Orahovac. You didn't do that on the evening of the
12 14th when you came back?
13 A. No, no. No one did, no one.
14 Q. But we're speaking about you. I'm not talking about --
15 A. I didn't know.
16 Q. And I'm speaking about that particular night. You never went
17 there to see him?
18 A. No, no, I didn't.
19 Q. And you didn't talk to him the next morning --
20 JUDGE LIU: Well, that coffee is really effective. Slow down.
21 MR. KARNAVAS: Okay. I apologise, Your Honour. I apologise.
22 Q. And you didn't speak to him the next day on the 15th?
23 A. No.
24 Q. And when Pandurevic came back from the field - and he's a pretty
25 impressive kind of guy, right, when he walks in you see him, you know who
1 he is, he has this aura of leadership, right? - you didn't walk up to him
2 and say, commander, there's been some executions going on?
3 A. No.
4 Q. My last question. I know you were outraged and I believe you.
5 But could you please explain to us why, why didn't you tell Obrenovic on
6 the 14th, who clearly was there or the duty officer or Pandurevic when he
7 came back the 15th, why didn't you ever go to their offices and say: This
8 was what happened; something needs to be done?
9 A. That would have been meaningless on my part. First of all,
10 because they knew what had happened and it wasn't necessary for me to
11 inform them. I don't know what my role would have been if I had gone and
12 said, Mr. Obrenovic, such-and-such things had been done when it was
13 general knowledge. It wouldn't be news to him. And secondly, there would
14 have been sanctions against me. I might have been punished. I might have
15 been sent to the front line. This would have been confrontational.
16 Q. Well, it might have been well-known to Mr. Obrenovic, but you have
17 no reason to believe that this was known to Mr. Jokic, do you?
18 A. I can say in general that on the territory of the municipality
19 everybody knew. There had been executions. Everybody -- it was common
21 Q. I'm talking about the 14th --
22 A. On the 14th. The news gets around right away. Everybody knew
23 that executions were going on in Orahovac. Some people escaped and there
24 were problems with the pit. And everybody knew everything. It went
25 around -- well, not exactly the same minute, but --
1 Q. So I take it that before you went to Orahovac, you knew that
2 executions were going on?
3 A. I know only that there were executions in the woods and
4 everywhere. There were all kinds of stories going around. It was chaos.
5 I can't tell you what happened on what date. On the 14th none of us who
6 went to Orahovac knew what was going to happen until we arrived there.
7 Q. I want to take it step by step because now you're saying everybody
8 knew while it was happening. So I'm asking you concretely -- I'm asking
9 you concretely --
10 A. I don't know.
11 Q. Before you went to Orahovac did you know executions were about to
12 happen there or were ongoing, yes or no?
13 A. No, I didn't know. In Orahovac, I didn't know.
14 Q. All right. And it was once you got there and you saw who was
15 involved, that's when you realised what was happening?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Okay. And when you came back from Orahovac, you never told anyone
18 at the Standard what you had seen, did you?
19 A. I told my colleagues, the journalists, my friends, the people who
20 were around, not the same evening but on the 15th in the morning. We
21 commented on these events, not on the 15th at midnight, no. After
23 Q. I'm talking about on the 14th because you're making the
24 assumption --
25 A. On the 14th, no, because the 15th was a new day. On the 14th, I
1 didn't talk to anyone because it was nearly midnight and then it was the
2 next day after -- and then I went to my office. And I didn't talk to
3 anyone about what had happened until the morning. But on the following
4 day everybody commented on what had happened. And in those six or seven
5 days, there were many events that occurred.
6 Q. All right --
7 A. So I can't really pinpoint it.
8 Q. So who ordered whose executions, since everybody was talking about
9 that? Was it Obrenovic? Pandurevic? Popovic? Beara? Who were the ones
10 who ordered the executions?
11 A. I don't have this information. I don't know who did it. I don't
12 know who ordered it. They probably know, but I don't. I don't know who
13 ordered this to be done, what they did. I don't know. I can hypothesise.
14 It would take quite some time. I don't know.
15 Q. I don't want you to hypothesise. Well, thank you very much. I
16 have no further questions.
17 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Mr. Karnavas.
18 Any cross-examination, Ms. Issa?
19 MS. ISSA: Yes, thank you, I do have a few questions.
20 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.
21 Cross-examined by Ms. Issa:
22 Q. Good morning, sir. I just want to pick up from you just
23 indicating in the last exchange that essentially everybody knew what was
24 going on, everybody knew about the executions during that period. That's
25 what you said. Right?
1 A. They knew when it had already been done, but none of us -- most of
2 us didn't know that there would be executions. But at the beginning of
3 the executions and while this was going on, after that it was common
4 knowledge. But at that moment it wasn't common knowledge that they were
5 to be shot. Most people didn't know it.
6 Q. Okay. I just want to turn to your interview in Banja Luka when
7 you were speaking to the OTP. You stand by what you told the OTP during
8 that period of time. Right? You stand by what you said to the
9 investigators when they met with you in Banja Luka. Is that right?
10 A. I think I said that. I may have added a few names, but all the
11 names I mentioned I repeated the same names. I abide by that. I may have
12 made an error, perhaps, I don't know.
13 Q. But I'm not asking you about names right now. I'm just asking you
14 generally, in general, when you met with the investigators --
15 A. I abide by this. Yes, I do.
16 Q. So I just want to go over some of the things that you may
17 have -- you said.
18 MS. ISSA: And if I can ask the assistance of Mr. Usher. And I
19 would be referring to page 77 in the English transcript and page 64 in the
20 B/C/S version.
21 Q. And I'm just starting about in the middle about line -- a little
22 bit above line 14 in your version, sir. And you were asked a question:
23 "The next day did you learn people were being executed at other sites?"
24 And you answer: "It might be, so I cannot be specific about it,
25 but usually something would happen. On that day it would become knowledge
1 or it would become known on the same day."
2 And then you were asked another question: "Would I be right in
3 saying that the day after you were at Orahovac most people knew what had
4 happened including Zvornik civilians?"
5 And you say: "Yes, and politicians knew and soldiers knew and
6 civilians knew."
7 You stand by that statement. Is that right, sir?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Now, earlier you were also asked about building machines in the
10 examination-in-chief, whether you saw building machines when you were --
11 A. No.
12 Q. Do you recall being asked that?
13 A. No, no.
14 Q. Okay.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. I'd like you then to -- in the English version we're turning to
17 page 59 in the interview, in the transcript. And if you can then please
18 turn to page 50 in your version, please. Just if we can perhaps start
19 around the middle.
20 You were asked: "When did you find out about the graves being dug
21 for those people that were executed on the day that you were there?"
22 And you say: "I think people that were captured, they saw the
23 machines, they saw the machines passing by and they probably got very
24 upset. I don't know."
25 And then you're asked: "Did you see machines passing by on the
1 day that you were at the gymnasium?"
2 And you say: "No, I did not but those machines passed along the
3 road before that."
4 You stand by that as well, sir: "Those machines passed along the
5 road before that"?
6 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stojanovic.
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it was for this
8 reason that during my examination-in-chief I asked the witness whether he
9 had seen any machinery, and the answer was no --
10 MS. ISSA: Your Honour --
11 JUDGE LIU: Well --
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] This question today is
13 practically asking the witness to speculate. He did not see any
14 machinery; that was his direct response. That is why I think this
15 question is not in order.
16 JUDGE LIU: Well, I think just because you asked this question and
17 the witness answered no so that the Prosecution will show the witness his
18 previous statement and ask some questions on that effect.
19 There's some differences between the situation at the gymnasium or
20 on the road and we'll look into the transcript to see that. And we also
21 remembered the answer of this witness. He said he thinks.
22 Well, Ms. Issa, you may proceed with your question.
23 MS. ISSA: Thank you, Your Honour.
24 Q. So, sir, you stand by that answer that you gave to the
25 interviewers in Banja Luka, that those machines had passed along the road
1 before that, before you had gotten to the gymnasium? You have --
2 A. I think they passed by before and that they became restless and
3 tried to break down the door. And then those two were shot. But I wasn't
4 in Orahovac then. I hadn't arrived then. This all happened before I
5 arrived in Orahovac. And I think the machinery passed by, but I didn't
6 see it and I don't know about it.
7 Q. Okay. So how do you -- what makes you think that the machines
8 were there before that?
9 A. Because people were saying that that's why they were upset, they
10 had come to the door. I don't know whether they had been able to see
11 anything, that they had tried to break out, and that's how those two that
12 I saw lying dead in the playground were killed.
13 Q. And when you say people were saying that the machines were there
14 before that, who are you referring to --
15 MR. KARNAVAS: They didn't say that.
16 JUDGE LIU: Yes --
17 MR. KARNAVAS: That's not what he said.
18 JUDGE LIU: We could look at the transcript.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] How do I know?
20 MS. ISSA:
21 Q. Well, what people are you referring to?
22 A. I don't know. There are many people there, lots of people there.
23 I can't say there were 100, because you would ask me: How do you know?
24 Did you count? Because there were a lot of people. And in the group I
25 was with, I didn't know them all. There was general talk going around.
1 Q. So are you talking about the soldiers that were there in Orahovac?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 MS. ISSA: I think we might need to go into private session for
5 the next few questions, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE LIU: Yes, we'll go to private session, please.
7 [Private session]
12 Page 12032 – redacted – private session.
12 Page 12033 – redacted – private session.
7 [Open session]
8 JUDGE LIU: Now we are in open session. You may proceed,
9 Ms. Issa.
10 MS. ISSA: Okay.
11 Q. Now, I'm going to ask you, sir, about the child, the 7-year-old
12 boy you said in your chief that he was saved and he was in the van with
13 you when you returned back to the barracks on the 14th, the night of the
14 14th of July. Now, can you tell us first of all what makes you think that
15 he was saved.
16 A. He did survive the execution. He was taken out, but he survived.
17 I couldn't really tell you the details. But simply, there were some who
18 survived. They were returned to Standard. We left, and he was taken to
19 the hospital. I don't know if he was just grazed by a bullet or
21 Q. Well, where was he -- where was he taken before he was taken to
22 the hospital?
23 A. This was between 11.00 and midnight. We left Standard and the
24 driver took him to the hospital. He wasn't taken anywhere prior to that.
25 Q. And how do you --
1 A. I don't know. I don't remember that anything else happened as far
2 as I recall. I think that's how it was, but I don't know any details.
3 Q. Okay. But how do you know specifically that he survived the
5 A. Because the person who was also there told me about it, and he
6 came with us. He was taken out because he was grazed, and he was taken to
7 the hospital to be bandaged. He was lightly wounded, grazed. The boy was
8 talking where Srebrenica is or asking where it was, where his father was.
9 Q. Okay. And where was he picked up from?
10 A. I don't know. I wasn't there at the time. I was in front
11 waiting. The van came along, and I got into the van. The boy was already
12 inside, so I don't know those details.
13 Q. Okay. Were you aware, sir, of the approximately 15 wounded
14 prisoners that were at the Standard in the barracks -- or at the clinic at
15 the Standard in the barracks on the 14th of July?
16 A. No. I wasn't. If I could add anything, this would be about this
17 other group that I know about. But this was later -- but perhaps we could
18 close it a little bit and I could say it again.
19 Q. Okay.
20 A. That was another group.
21 Q. Okay. I think perhaps -- I'm not sure if the witness is
22 requesting that we go into private session, Your Honour, but perhaps we
23 could do that and he could clarify --
24 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
25 Witness, what do you mean by saying that we could close --
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] About this other group.
2 JUDGE LIU: Yes. What do you mean by saying that, we could close
3 it a little bit and I could say it again?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What sense? I don't know. When was
5 this? What --
6 JUDGE LIU: Well, there's some -- maybe some language differences.
7 MS. ISSA: I'm wondering if Your Honour would allow me to ask a
8 question just to try to clarify this.
9 JUDGE LIU: Yes, you may proceed, but just be cautious that we
10 would return back to private session at any time. You may proceed.
11 MS. ISSA: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. Now, you were saying there was this other group that you could
13 tell us about. Right?
14 A. Yes. Like this or in a closed session? How do you do it? Should
15 we do it like this or in a closed session. About this other group, about
16 these 15 people that you're asking about, I don't know about that.
17 Q. Okay. Are you asking that we go into private session, sir?
18 JUDGE LIU: Yes, we'll go to private session, please.
19 [Private session]
17 [Open session]
18 JUDGE LIU: Now we are in open session. You may proceed,
19 Ms. Issa.
20 MS. ISSA:
21 Q. Now, sir, earlier you were telling us how people were outraged and
22 had condemned the executions and what occurred. So it would be fair to
23 say that the public was quite upset about what had been going on, all the
24 executions that were going on in this period. Isn't that right?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Were you aware, sir, that during that time, either on the 14th or
2 the 15th of July, there was something aired on television showing Serb
3 bodies? You weren't aware of that?
4 A. I don't remember, no. I only know that a certain number of
5 soldiers were killed. I think the number of casualties was about 40. I
6 think that included eight military police officers and then a certain
7 number from each battalion. There were also some men who were wounded.
8 The casualties numbered about 40 men. I don't know about the other
10 Q. If you don't know, that's fine. Okay. Thank you.
11 MS. ISSA: I don't have any further questions.
12 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, Ms. Issa.
13 Any re-direct, Mr. Stojanovic?
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Just one thing that we need to
15 clarify, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.
17 Re-examined by Mr. Stojanovic:
18 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Tanic, in Banja Luka and today you said the
19 next day already there was a lot of talk about what had happened, about
20 the executions, and that 90 per cent of the people condemned this. Do you
21 remember saying that?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. When you say "the next day," that is what you said to the
24 Prosecution on page 64 of the B/C/S version, this is what you told the
25 investigators in Banja Luka, which day would this be chronologically?
1 When you say "the next day," from what day?
2 A. The 15th.
3 JUDGE LIU: Well, I think the witness has already answered that
4 question. Do you have any other questions?
5 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
6 JUDGE LIU: Microphone.
7 MS. ISSA: I'm sorry, Your Honour. I apologise. I think that was
8 maybe taken out of context because I read out another portion of
9 the -- of what the witness had said earlier. So I'm not sure -- I would
10 suggest that perhaps the question was misstating things slightly. But he
11 has answered the question. I see that.
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes. I think he has answered the question.
13 You may proceed.
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Let us then finish with this: Mr. Tanic, in contacts with
16 Dragan Jokic did you ever hear or at any other time did you hear from
17 Dragan Jokic or anyone else about the participation of Dragan Jokic in all
18 of this?
19 A. No, I did not.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE LIU: This question has been asked and answered at least for
22 three times.
23 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I wanted to confirm
24 this because of the cross-examination, because the question was asked
25 about the possible knowledge of Dragan Jokic on the 14th of July. We have
1 no problem about the 15th of July, Your Honour. We also said that in our
2 opening statement. This is something that is repeated by the witness
3 today. The whole of Zvornik knew what was going on.
4 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
5 Mr. Karnavas?
6 MR. KARNAVAS: No questions, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Judge Argibay, please.
10 Questioned by the Court:
11 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Yes, sir, you were talking today a little earlier
12 about that it was your chief's obligation to report either to the
13 commander or the chief of staff. And I wanted to know: Who was your
14 chief? And I don't want the name, only the position.
15 A. My chief from July 1993 was Drago Sakotic. And after --
16 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Sorry. I don't want the name. I want the
18 A. Well, of course. That's not a problem. He was the chief for
19 financial affairs. Afterwards, before Srebrenica, another man was in this
21 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Thank you. I don't have any more questions.
22 JUDGE LIU: Any questions out of Judge Argibay's question? I see
23 everybody is shaking their heads.
24 At this stage are there any documents to tender? Mr. Stojanovic?
25 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. We have no
1 documents to tender through the testimony of this witness.
2 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
3 Not from the Prosecution?
4 MS. ISSA: No, Your Honour. Thank you.
5 JUDGE LIU: Well, Witness, thank you very much indeed for coming
6 to The Hague to give your testimony.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And am I no longer considered as a
8 suspect? What my status was before, has that now been lifted?
9 JUDGE LIU: Well, you have to consult with the Prosecutor. I'm
10 sorry I could not give you a definite answer on the spot, but you could
11 ask the Prosecution to clarify this issue for you. Yes. And when we are
12 adjourned, the usher will show you out of the room.
13 Are there any other matters that the parties would like to raise
14 at this stage? If not, the hearing for today is adjourned. We'll resume
15 next Monday morning, 9.00, in Courtroom II.
16 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
17 at 11.44 a.m., to be reconvened on Monday,
18 the 19th day of July, 2004,
19 at 9.00 a.m.