Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 16242

1 Monday, 26 May 2003

2 [Open session]

3 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.

4 [The accused entered court]

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Registrar. Could you call the case,

6 please.

7 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Good morning, Your Honours.

8 This is the case number IT-99-36-T, the Prosecutor versus Radoslav

9 Brdjanin.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Brdjanin. Good morning to you. Can you

11 hear me in a language that you can understand?

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honour. I can,

13 and I do understand.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Appearances for the Prosecution.

15 MS. KORNER: Joanna Korner, assisted by Denise Gustin. Good

16 morning, Your Honours.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you.

18 Appearances for Radislav Brdjanin.

19 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Good morning, Your Honour, David Cunningham with

20 Barbara Baruch, and we're here also with Vesna Anic.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you and good morning to you, too. First I

22 would like to inform you and enter into the records that today we are

23 sitting without Judge Taya, who, for urgent personal reasons and reasons

24 which have been authorised -- which have been acknowledged by myself and

25 also the President of the Tribunal, is unable to be with us. Therefore,

Page 16243

1 in virtue of Rule 15 bis(A)(i) and (ii), with the remaining Judges of this

2 Chamber, we are ordering that the hearing of this case continues in the

3 absence of Judge Taya, for not more than five working days as envisaged

4 under the same Rule.

5 So any preliminaries before we bring in the witness?

6 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, only this: That Your Honours will

7 recall that I asked last week to sit all day today and all day tomorrow.


9 MS. KORNER: Because of the witness who had problems with his

10 work. In fact, we've now arranged so there's an alteration of the witness

11 order, that he comes next Monday. He just needs to be here for one day.

12 So tomorrow, the next witness will be Mr. Kaiser. I've happily spoken to

13 Mr. Cunningham, who tells me that it's more than likely that he won't

14 require the whole day for Mr. Hidic, nor indeed for Mr. Kaiser. But if

15 necessary, could we just sit a little longer to finish Mr. Kaiser? After

16 that, we can go back to half days.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So I take it today we will be sitting --

18 MS. KORNER: 9.00 until 12.30, as I understand it, and then 2.00

19 to 4.00.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: 2.00 to 4.00. Okay.

21 That's agreed?

22 MR. CUNNINGHAM: That's agreed, Your Honour.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: And tomorrow we'll be sitting the same?

24 MS. KORNER: Yes, if we could, Your Honour. I know Mr. Kaiser is

25 a very busy man, so he'll be anxious to leave.

Page 16244

1 JUDGE AGIUS: And we'll try and finish with Mr. Kaiser tomorrow,

2 even if it means sitting for a while longer if necessary. Perhaps, Madam

3 Chuqing, you will make arrangements, if necessary.

4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, the other thing Your Honour asked was

5 for a witness list to the end of the trial.


7 MS. KORNER: That's been dealt with effectively over the weekend.

8 We will in fact be filing a motion in respect of part of it, but it will

9 be ready for Your Honours tomorrow.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you, Ms. Korner.

11 Let's bring Mr. Hidic in, please.

12 [The witness entered court]

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, Mr. Hidic.

14 THE WITNESS: Good morning.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Please stand up. And before we proceed, may I ask

16 you to repeat the solemn declaration that you made last time.


18 [Witness answered through interpreter]

19 JUDGE AGIUS: I understand that -- can you check -- can you hear

20 me?

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Now I can.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Please stand up and read out again once more

23 the solemn declaration. Thank you. And then we can proceed with the

24 testimony. Yes.

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak

Page 16245

1 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.

3 Yes, Ms. Korner.

4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, may I begin this morning by sorting out

5 the confusion I caused myself towards the end of the hearing last Thursday

6 in respect of documents, whether there are three, in fact three -- I'm

7 sorry - two versions of one and as we're going to discover, three of

8 another. Could Your Honours please look at Exhibit P245, which is behind

9 divider 27 in the bundle, and you'll need to look at the original B/C/S

10 version. And could the witness, which I don't think the witness does need

11 to have it. It's just for our purposes. If you look at the page, the

12 last page of the B/C/S, you'll see there are two typed signatures, but

13 only one actual --

14 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, Ms. Korner, because I have the wrong --

15 I'm sorry. I was -- yes. Okay.

16 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Presiding Judge, please.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. I'm sorry. I was getting confused. I didn't

18 see the document straight away, but it is here. Yes.

19 MS. KORNER: Now, Your Honour, attached to Mr. Hidic's statement

20 was a -- the same document that he provided when the investigator saw

21 him. I'm going to ask that he be handed that now. It may well be we've

22 got a copy that we can ... The English is identical, but as we'll see,

23 Your Honour, the B/C/S is not, although ...

24 Examined by Ms. Korner: [Continued]

25 Q. Mr. Hidic, on that document can you see your writing again?

Page 16246

1 A. No.

2 MS. KORNER: Can I have it for a moment?

3 Your Honour, it's my fault. He was handed P245. And we'll hand

4 them to Your Honours at the same time. It's for the witness, and then we

5 have copies for Your Honours and for the Registry. All right. We're

6 handing in a number of copies, Your Honour.

7 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Could we get a copy of that exhibit, please.


9 Q. Mr. Hidic, if you turn, please, to the parts of the original,

10 which is in your own language. I think if you go for about four pages,

11 you'll see. Now, in that copy, do you see your writing and underlining?

12 A. Yes.

13 MS. KORNER: And if Your Honours go to the last page, Your Honours

14 will see that there is -- the difference is that on this copy of it,

15 there's two typed signatures and two handwritten, and on the other there's

16 only one handwritten.

17 Your Honour, may I ask that that version, produced by Mr. Hidic,

18 becomes P245.1, A for the English, B for the B/C/S.

19 [Trial Chamber confers]

20 JUDGE AGIUS: I was asked whether this is the only difference,

21 that there is -- I think it's --

22 MS. KORNER: It is, yes.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Except that in the last paragraph had been completed

24 and concluded - here it is - had been exhausted and concluded. That's the

25 only thing --

Page 16247

1 MS. KORNER: The translation.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: -- that is different. Otherwise it's a replication

3 of --

4 MS. KORNER: As I think we've been through before, translation is

5 an art form rather than a science form, so sometimes different words will

6 appear.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Otherwise the substance seems to be the same.

8 MS. KORNER: Yes.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Please go ahead, Ms. Korner.

10 MS. KORNER: Thank you. Your Honour, I'm afraid there's one more

11 document. In fact, if you turn in the bundle to the next document, which

12 is P1833 --

13 JUDGE AGIUS: 1833.

14 MS. KORNER: For that, we've already produced two versions of it -

15 sorry. I beg your pardon. Well, I must have -- I'm afraid that we've

16 maybe got ourselves -- we seem to have produced this document. I'm not

17 sure why, 1877.3. But Your Honour, 1877.3 -- oh, I see.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think we have this.

19 MS. KORNER: I'm now getting confused. It's Monday morning. Can

20 Your Honours look, please, first of all, at 1833.


22 MS. KORNER: Which is behind divider 28. Mr. Hidic -- we've

23 already got two versions of that. Your Honour will recall the signatures

24 were different; we went through that. Mr. Hidic actually brought up yet a

25 third version we've discovered by checking the documents he brought, which

Page 16248

1 is again slightly different. Your Honour, obviously I wouldn't trouble

2 with all this were it not for the fact of this sort of blanket allegation

3 that anything that emanates from AID is a forgery or may be a forgery.

4 Can we just hand up the third version, then? I think that's all

5 we need to do. I think by mistake we've produced it as 1877. Is that

6 right?

7 JUDGE AGIUS: There is 1877.1 and 1877.2.

8 MS. KORNER: Yes. Well, in fact, it's my error, Your Honour,

9 because it's the same document with different versions as 1833.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Which one is the same document?

11 MS. KORNER: That was produced as -- 1877 is the same document as

12 1833.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's put it like this: 1877.1 is certainly not the

14 same in the full sense of the meaning as 1833.

15 MS. KORNER: It's the same document --

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, but -- oh, I see. You mean the B/C/S version?

17 MS. KORNER: Yes.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. The B/C/S version may be -- yes. Let me

19 check, because ...

20 MS. KORNER: If you look at it, it's the minutes from the 35th

21 session.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Yes. But it's -- well, I look at

23 1877.1, the green, and I look at 1833, the B/C/S version. The top left

24 corner --

25 MS. KORNER: Says 57.

Page 16249

1 JUDGE AGIUS: There is 57 -- it's not in the green one that I am

2 seeing now.

3 MS. KORNER: I know. But if you read the text, it's identical.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, I would imagine so, except that I can't --

5 MS. KORNER: If Your Honours look -- I mean, it's the 35th session

6 held at 17 -- at 1920 minutes thereof.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: It's not, Ms. Korner. It's -- the text is

8 identical, but the signatures are not.

9 MS. KORNER: No. Your Honour, that's what I'm trying to do, put

10 together -- the text is identical, the signatures -- not all of them are.

11 Right. There are three versions of this.


13 MS. KORNER: The first is the one provided to us by AID, and that

14 is Exhibit P1833.


16 MS. KORNER: The second is the one that I produced yesterday --

17 Thursday, which was given by Mr. Hidic, who brought it with him the day

18 before he -- or the day he came here, and then he provided us with an

19 earlier version, which again is marginally different, which I just want to

20 exhibit now, on the signatures.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: And there is 1877.2 as well, which is the same

22 document but again the order of the signatures is different.

23 MS. KORNER: Yes. Right. Well, Your Honour, can I just then -- I

24 think we had better leave the exhibit number as it is, otherwise we're all

25 going to get very confused. But the versions 8 -- P1877.1, 2, and 3, all

Page 16250

1 which are slightly different in the signatures, are all produced by

2 Mr. Hidic, I hope. And we'll hand in now this version. And having now

3 confused everybody on a Monday morning -- sorry. I think perhaps

4 Mr. Hidic had better just identify again his writing on it.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: No, I don't have -- are you circulating 1877.3 now?

6 MS. KORNER: I am. And I'm just going to get Mr. Hidic in a

7 moment to identify his writing on the document.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: This has one signature less.

9 MS. KORNER: Yes. And as Your Honours just said, the difference

10 here is it's one signature less.

11 Q. Mr. Hidic, again, is this a document that you were provided with

12 by someone who had access to the municipal building, and you've written on

13 it?

14 A. Yes. This is the document that I had with me and that I handed

15 over to the Tribunal.

16 Q. Thank you.

17 MS. KORNER: Then, Your Honour, that becomes 1877.3. Your Honour,

18 just so there's no confusion, although Mr. Hidic's documents, where they

19 are the same as provided by AID are the same in terms of the text, they're

20 all different. None of them are identical. And for the most part, the

21 documents he's provided do not have a corresponding one from AID.

22 Q. Right. Sorry about that, Mr. Hidic. We just had to sort out your

23 documents. Now, Mr. Hidic, I want to go back, finally, to the events that

24 took place in Petrovac. I want to deal with what happened to property in

25 Bosanski Petrovac. Can I just for a moment check a document we've already

Page 16251

1 looked at. Yes.

2 During the period before the expulsion, from about April of 1992,

3 did anything happen to homes and businesses owned by Bosniaks?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Can you just describe to us briefly what that was.

6 A. If my memory serves me well, in late May, once the blockade of the

7 road towards Bihac was lifted, this coincided with the developments in

8 Bosanski Petrovac municipality. That involved Muslims, that is,

9 Bosniaks. On the 28th of May, there was an attack on a Bosniak house, the

10 house owned by Atif Redzic. The attack was by a hand-held rocket launcher

11 and chemical weapons. On the following morning, like the majority of the

12 citizens of Bosanski Petrovac, I came there, and I saw that the house had

13 been shelled and that the shells had a chemical content, because one could

14 smell some very bad odours, and I also saw a group of political

15 representatives of the authorities of Bosanski Petrovac. I also saw the

16 police, and they were talking to the people, explaining to them what had

17 happened and answering their questions.

18 Soon after that, in June, sometime around the 2nd of June, there

19 was another attack on the part of the town inhabited by Muslims. On the

20 4th of June, we witnessed the first victims of an attack. A person was

21 killed in front of the Alpina coffee bar sometime before the curfew, an

22 hour before the curfew, Muhamed Terzic was killed. Later on --

23 Q. I'm going to come on with the killings in a moment. I just want

24 to deal with the attacks on property, if I may.

25 A. The property was also targeted. First there were attacks on

Page 16252

1 Bosniak business premises and craft shops which were in the centre of the

2 town. Within one week, the total assets of Bosniaks that used to be their

3 property before that was destroyed. All these attacks would usually

4 happen during the night, during the curfew and all these attacks were

5 carried out by hand grenades. There were traces to that effect, and

6 every -- and I personally visited the barber shop that had been destroyed

7 on the previous night. I believe that the police came. This was my

8 brother-in-law's barber shop. I believe that they collected the remains

9 of the hand grenade. My brother-in-law did some repairs on that same day,

10 but on that same evening another attack ensued. This time -- this not

11 involved hand grenades, but an automatic rifle, by which the glass was

12 shattered and everything in the shop was destroyed.

13 So as I've said, within the space of one week between the 5th or

14 the 6th of June and the 15th of June, all the Bosniak shops and business

15 premises in the town were destroyed, not only in the town but also in its

16 vicinity.

17 In the meantime, there were also cases of cars being confiscated,

18 lorries being confiscated. Allegedly, they were confiscated because the

19 army ordered their confiscation or mobilisation. At some occasions, some

20 papers were even produced; however, the luxurious cars were mostly

21 confiscated by force, at gun point.

22 Q. Now, you've described how on a number of occasions when you

23 arrived the police were there. To your knowledge, was anybody ever caught

24 or prosecuted for any of these offences?

25 A. I'm not aware of any such thing. I really am not, during those

Page 16253

1 days. The police did indeed come and investigate. They even took

2 pictures, these shops that were damaged. But I'm not aware of any

3 criminal charges being brought against the perpetrators of this nighttime

4 vandalism.

5 Q. Now, were there any mosques in the town of Bosanski Petrovac?

6 A. Yes, of course, of course. There were some in Bosanski Petrovac,

7 in the very centre of town, and also in the wider area of town. There

8 were two mosques. And there was a third one, in the village of Rasinovac.

9 And the fourth one was in Bjelaj. Since the Second World War, it hadn't

10 been repaired until the other war broke out, and it did not have a

11 minaret.

12 Q. What happened to the mosques?

13 A. These two mosques in town, during the month of July, during the

14 night between the 7th and the 8th, and the 8th and the 9th, were totally

15 destroyed. They were blown up. The minaret was blown up. And as the

16 mosque was blown up, the roof and the walls were damaged. Over 50 per

17 cent, 60 per cent, that's the extent to which the facility itself was

18 damaged.

19 Q. And when did those -- at what time of day did this destruction

20 take place?

21 A. The first mosque was destroyed around 12.00, between 12.00 and

22 1.00, and the other one also sometime within that time frame, around 1.00,

23 perhaps a bit after 1.00. I cannot recall with any precision now. But it

24 is in that period, at that time, that both mosques in town were blown up.

25 Q. And that's in the early hours of the morning, then, or do you mean

Page 16254

1 during the afternoon?

2 A. After midnight. After midnight.

3 Q. All right. Can I ask you very briefly, please, to look at Exhibit

4 P1863, which is the last one in the binder. And could you turn in that,

5 please, to the paragraph number 4, the big paragraph, which should be

6 headed "Information on Destroyed Buildings by Location." It's on the

7 fifth page, I think, of your version.

8 Now, this is a report prepared by the Bosniaks in 1997, and so

9 obviously it includes everything that happened until the end of the war.

10 But we see here that in the town area, 545 buildings owned by Muslims were

11 destroyed, with the following degrees of destruction. By the time you

12 left Bosanski Petrovac, in September 1992, how many houses had actually

13 been destroyed, that you can now recall, roughly?

14 A. I'm aware of a few buildings having been torched. They burned

15 down, of course. And afterwards it was cleared up by way of people

16 carrying out work obligation. These are buildings that are in town. But

17 I also know that a large number of old Bosnian buildings that were

18 primarily not inhabited, they were also torched in September 1992. But I

19 think that what is shown here -- I mean, most of the damage was caused the

20 war itself. That is to say, at the time when we were not in Bosanski

21 Petrovac itself.

22 Q. But then going to, please, the information on the cultural and

23 religious facilities, which is the next big paragraph, 5. If you go to

24 religious facilities, there were four mosques in the municipality, and

25 then over the page, it lists three mosques that were demolished. Were all

Page 16255

1 those mosques that you know about destroyed before you left, as you've

2 described to us, in July of 1992?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Thank you. You can give that document back now -- actually, no,

5 keep that document for a moment, because I want to move to killings, and I

6 want to take this, if I can, shortly by using the documents. At the front

7 of this document, there are a list of people who have been killed and are

8 buried. And could you take also, please, Exhibit P1878, which is the

9 report from the expatriate club that was in Zagreb, which you've read

10 before.

11 In both those reports, there are descriptions of killings that

12 took place, and you began to describe to us the killing of a person who

13 was outside a shop. Having read both these reports, are those

14 descriptions first of the killings which took place in -- shown in the

15 expatriate document, P1878? Is that an accurate description?

16 A. Yes. It concerns the first killing, and the description of that

17 killing is accurate.

18 Q. And then you can see -- well, I'm sorry. I'm going to stop

19 there. Did you personally witness any of these killings that took place

20 in Petrovac?

21 A. Of course, it was very hard to be an eyewitness, because this

22 happened during the night, that is to say, during the curfew, which I

23 think was imposed only upon the Muslims, or rather, the Bosniaks. How

24 should I put this? As for the Serb population, life went on as usual.

25 But at any rate, in the morning, people would find out about what had

Page 16256

1 happened, and many of these killings could be seen by a large number of

2 citizens. Inter alia, I saw some of the killings after they had been

3 committed during the night, and sometimes I also attended the funerals of

4 these people who were so unfortunately killed, of course, when it was

5 possible to attend such ceremonies. My experience is related to Osman

6 Hadzic, my neighbour who was also killed, but he was killed in the period

7 between the 20th and 24th of September. Of course, I saw his corpse. He

8 was shot in the head with two bullets. The police was there, on site, on

9 site. They carried out an on-site investigation. They made it possible

10 for us, through Mico Atlagic, Milovan Atlagic, my neighbour - his name has

11 already been mentioned here - that we try to bury the body within 15 or 20

12 minutes. There were very few of us, only three or four. I can't remember

13 exactly. But in the garden right behind their house, we managed to dig a

14 shallow grave and to bury the remains in that grave. Of course, this was

15 risky. It was risky to do this kind of thing, because during those days,

16 at any moment, a patrol could show up, and their exclusive task was to

17 patrol the Muslim-populated areas of Bosanski Petrovac.

18 Of course, they would open fire against any person who would be

19 outside their houses. They would even kill people who would be seen that

20 way.

21 Q. Does that mean that you had to bury people after the curfew?

22 A. This was during the day. The burial took place during the day,

23 around noon or in the afternoon. I can't remember exactly, but it took

24 quite a while for the police to come. Of course, before that, they

25 carried out the identification, and only then the on-site investigation

Page 16257

1 took place by the police, and then only later did they ask to have it

2 buried. The corpse could not be taken to the cemetery, of course, but it

3 had to be buried somewhere around the house, so it was buried in the

4 garden, as I've already explained.

5 Q. Let me just pick up on that. Why couldn't it go to the cemetery?

6 A. Well, I think it was impossible because of the patrols. I already

7 mentioned that the patrols were circulating, and this infamous white Golf,

8 as it was called, it was driving around the Muslim neighbourhoods, and

9 whenever they would see any signs of life in yards or in the street, they

10 would open fire. There was absolute fear, and it was impossible to carry

11 out the burial at the local cemetery.

12 Q. This infamous white Golf, who were the people who were driving

13 around in it?

14 A. For the most part, they were younger people, and it was very hard

15 to establish their identity. However, people did mention some names, but

16 I cannot confirm this myself. I personally saw the Golf, but I did not

17 see the people who were sitting in the Golf and who were shooting from it.

18 Q. Leave aside their names for the moment. Were the people who were

19 in the Golf and shooting at Muslims, were they in uniform?

20 A. Yes, they were in uniform. They were in uniform. That could be

21 seen. They had olive-green/grey shirts or T-shirts and of course you

22 couldn't see any caps on their head. They looked like any soldier in the

23 world to me. I mean, when you see them in such uniform, it was very hard

24 to tell them apart. And you didn't really have the opportunity of seeing

25 this very well.

Page 16258

1 Q. Were the uniforms like official police uniforms or different?

2 A. Well, I think they wore different clothing, but I think they

3 preferred olive-grey. More were in olive-grey. It was fashionable to

4 wear Rambo-style clothes with short sleeves, and of course young soldiers

5 tried to emulate that, especially in situations like this one.

6 Q. Now, you told us that the first killing was of this man called

7 Muhamed Terzic, outside -- you were starting to tell us, outside a bar.

8 Were you actually present when he was killed?

9 A. No. Unfortunately, I was not present. Hardly anyone was present,

10 because before that, in the direction of the Alpina cafe that is, say,

11 about 300 to 500 metres away from the centre of town, perhaps a bit more

12 than that - I cannot be very accurate right now - shooting went on all the

13 time. They were even shooting at houses that were owned by Muslims. And

14 then - I don't know how this happened, but a man happened to be there in

15 the street. But at any rate, I later find out - people talked about

16 this - that he was in the company of a young man, a Serb, a former

17 colleague of his, and they were probably together. And it is quite

18 certain that this man had guaranteed his safety. However, what proved to

19 be fateful was that this young man ran away, because the shooting

20 started. So he remained on his own, and of course they did all sorts of

21 things to him and then ultimately killed him in front of Alpina, right

22 there on the sidewalk. This could be seen in the morning, the place where

23 he had been killed. Of course, the corpse had been collected by then, but

24 there was a small pool of blood there where he had been killed. People

25 could come and they could see the actual site where this took place, but

Page 16259

1 it would be noteworthy to mention that at Terzic's funeral there were

2 Bosniak Muslims but there were also a large number of Serbs who were

3 present and who were shocked in this way by the vandalism that had

4 occurred in Bosanski Petrovac. It's not only that the killing took

5 place -- that this killing took place that night, but another one, Sead

6 Husagic's killing took place. It was far worse than that. I've already

7 described that a few days ago. Rifle grenades were thrown at his house

8 and they had some chemical components too. And he happened to be in his

9 yard, looking for his dog that was not on his leash, and these men saw him

10 and they shot him. I mean, they were shooting in this Muslim

11 neighbourhood anyway, and when they noticed him, they caught up with him,

12 they dragged him out into the street, they beat him first, then they

13 wounded him in the leg so he could not run away.

14 And after this dramatic beating and his screams that were heard by

15 the neighbours but regrettably nobody dared go out to help the unfortunate

16 Sead, the same evening, when the family appealed, the representatives of

17 the police came, put him in a car and took him to the medical centre, the

18 health centre, which is close to his house, and two days later he

19 succumbed to his very grave wounds. He died. There was a funeral

20 afterwards and many citizens attended the funeral, Bosniaks and Serbs, and

21 the comments were such that they actually amounted to bitterness. How

22 could something like that happen in a town like Bosanski Petrovac? Until

23 then, everybody kept saying that nothing would happen there, that such

24 things could not happen there, that people could not be killed in the

25 street just like that.

Page 16260

1 The same night there was shooting at the houses and shops of

2 Bosniak Muslims. A woman was seriously wounded then, and along with her

3 child. Her child was about 6 or 7 years old. They were both seriously

4 wounded and they were transferred to the health centre the same night.

5 They were given assistance there and then they were released the very next

6 day. They were told that they could not be kept at the health centre but

7 they said that the wounded were being brought in and that nobody could

8 guarantee anything anymore and they were released. They were sent home.

9 Q. How shortly after those incidents had taken place were you told

10 about them?

11 A. Practically the same day, the same morning, people found out about

12 this. People could come freely and see this. I mean, the places where

13 these things had happened. As a matter of fact, there were some traces in

14 the street itself. A bottle with an alcoholic drink. It was not empty,

15 so it was probably the people who had done this that had been drinking.

16 After we left, of course, I found out about this after returning

17 to Bosanski Petrovac. I found out that this was done by Mico Basta,

18 nicknamed Rambo, from Krnjeusa, a Serb village not far away, or rather

19 20 kilometres away from Bosanski Petrovac, halfway between Bosanski

20 Petrovac and Bosanska Krupa. Some other people from the village of

21 Krnjeusa were with him. I don't know how many. But it is known that an

22 attempt was made to disarm this Mico Rambo and this proved to be

23 unsuccessful. As far as I know, he is a free man still in Republika

24 Srpska. He was never held accountable for the crimes that he had

25 committed in Bosanski Petrovac.

Page 16261

1 Q. Now, you've already told us about somebody being beaten before he

2 was killed. Were there beatings that took place in Petrovac of Bosniaks,

3 without people being killed as a result?

4 A. Yes. Yes, of course. Before this beating, there were beatings by

5 policemen and people were taken out of town. Perhaps even a month before

6 this, people were physically tortured, beaten, but they didn't dare speak

7 about it. It was even made possible for some to free from Bosanski

8 Petrovac after such beatings, and so many people did indeed avail

9 themselves of this opportunity and they went in the direction of Bihac,

10 because that was possible until, say, the 27th or 28th of May.

11 Q. I want, then, please, to deal with the prisons. We looked at a

12 document yesterday about holding people -- yesterday, on Thursday - about

13 holding people in the SJB. You told us that you had -- you were the

14 manager of a warehouse that was situated outside Bosanski Petrovac. Did

15 you become aware of any prison in that vicinity?

16 A. Yes, absolutely. I've already told you that I worked in

17 Bosnaplast. This is just outside the town zone, on the road between

18 Bosanski Petrovac and Drvar, and already in 1991, there was a logistical

19 centre that was set up there. Of course, I did not know straight away

20 what this had to do with this logistics centre, but eventually it really

21 did become a centre, because there were more and more men in uniform

22 there. Some people who worked in the factory itself, that is to say, who

23 were reserve officers, were already called up as reservists, and they were

24 there at the logistics centre. I think I mentioned the name of an

25 engineer, a technologist, or rather, a manager in this company, Tomo

Page 16262

1 Miscevic. He was a JNA captain, a reserve captain -- Captain or Captain

2 First Class. It doesn't really matter now. But he does have the rank of

3 captain. And he was one of the leaders of this logistics centre.

4 Of course, there was a kitchen there too. Its objective was to

5 provide supplies to everyone in the field and the area. And later on,

6 this kitchen provided food for the camp that was established sometime in

7 the beginning of July, in Kozila, in the village of Drinic, or rather,

8 above the village of Drinic in the mountain of Klekovaca. I heard of a

9 story, and this version was confirmed later on.

10 Q. All right. Confirmed by who, the story you're about to tell us?

11 A. Well, it was confirmed later, after the liberation, of course,

12 that plans were being made for the prison at the police station, which had

13 become too small for all the persons who had been detained in the

14 meantime, that it should be transferred about 100 to 150 metres away from

15 Bosnaplast, to Kartal's house, his nickname was Pean that two other houses

16 in that area should be empty. One was set fire to and the other was blown

17 up after this, because it was made of some kind of hard material and it

18 couldn't burn down easily. And Mr. Pean's house was supposed to be turned

19 into a prison, since it had a good basement, a good cellar, rather a

20 spacious one.

21 Q. I'm going to ask you to look at the document that I think you're

22 referring to. Could you have a look, please, at P1833, which is the one

23 that Mr. Hidic has got the version of, the one we had numbered versions

24 of. It's the Crisis Staff decision number 57 of the 16th of June. And if

25 we look at the top of page 2 in our translation, the man who was head of

Page 16263

1 the police force, Mr. Gacesa, talked about a list of 40 people or so

2 considered to be organisers, a separate group, or to have acted from

3 extreme fundamentalist Islamic position. And then going down that

4 paragraph, there are two possible options, one that a certain number of

5 persons who could be a potential threat be isolated, but not on the

6 premises of the SJB public security station; and the other, that

7 extremists be isolated outside Petrovac.

8 Then, as the discussion continued, the view prevailed that the

9 isolation of extremists outside Petrovac would be dangerous to themselves,

10 and it was best to isolate them in a well-guarded facility on the

11 outskirts of town.

12 And then we see a decision that all individuals who possess

13 illegal weapons or have been registered as Muslim extremists, thus posing

14 a potential threat, shall be detained and held in custody.

15 And then the next paragraph talks about the part that you've just

16 dealt with. And do I understand that you're telling us that you were

17 aware of this because you saw the houses being destroyed, or the house?

18 A. This house was not destroyed. It was the two houses next to it

19 that had been destroyed.

20 Q. You're quite right. And then the SJB will remove all Muslim

21 owners of weekend cottages from the Ostrelj weekend settlement. Where was

22 that, the weekend settlement?

23 A. This weekend settlement called Ostrelj is on the road between

24 Bosanski Petrovac and Drvar. We're talking about a mountain area some

25 1.300 metres high. And previously it was a tourist recreation office or

Page 16264

1 facility. Sometime in the 1980s, a plan was made to transform it into a

2 residential area, or rather, a weekend area. And then sometime in 1984,

3 during the winter Olympic games in Sarajevo, a third ski slope was built

4 there. The first one was in Vlasic, the second one in Ostrelj, and then

5 the one in Bosanski Petrovac. This was a large settlement. I believe

6 that there were between 50 and 100 holiday bungalows, or even more than

7 that. And a number of people of all ethnic backgrounds came to this area

8 for weekends. However, the majority of those weekend houses belonged to

9 the Serbian officer from the Second World War, and some other high

10 officials and prominent politicians and so on and so forth. There was

11 also a number of owners who were of Muslim ethnic background.

12 And those people were from Bosanski Petrovac, Bihac, Banja Luka,

13 and some other towns out of Bosanski Petrovac municipality. They were all

14 completed and they were all inhabited. They all served its purpose.

15 Q. All right. Can we just look, please, for a moment at P1804.

16 We'll just put it up on the ELMO just to identify the map.

17 And can we see there the town you're talking about at the bottom

18 of the map?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. And -- thank you. You can give it back to the Usher.

21 All I want to know about then finally is: Do you know whether the

22 Muslim owners of cottages there were removed?

23 A. During these days, these people did not reside in these cottages.

24 It was already the beginning of a war, so the majority, or rather, none of

25 the Muslims who had their weekend cottages up there did not go there.

Page 16265

1 These houses were vacant. There were no Muslims or anybody there. These

2 houses were used for the accommodation of Serbian officers and Serbian

3 troops who even had their command post up there. And there was a hotel

4 there, a property of the Grmec catering establishment. It had about 30 to

5 50 beds. And this hotel was also used for accommodation for military

6 purposes. And the hotel -- there was another hotel owned by SIP Ostrelj.

7 It was like a workers holiday.

8 Q. Thank you, Mr. Hidic, but I think that's all I needed to know. But

9 thank you. Okay. Can you please now have a look at P1840.

10 This is a list of people who -- for whom the Petrovac SJB had

11 ordered isolation. And at the bottom, a total of 29 persons were taken to

12 do labour at the Kozila camp on the 1st of July, 1992. First, did you

13 know these people who are named here? We see at number 8 somebody called

14 Muhamed [as interpreted] Hidic. Was that a relative of yours?

15 A. Yes. This is my relative and my neighbour. And I am familiar

16 with the majority of these people. These people were first arrested and

17 detained in the police building in Bosanski Petrovac, and later on they

18 were all transferred to the camp in Kozila. All to the last on this list

19 were in the Kozila camp in Bosanski Petrovac. Obviously, this list should

20 be much longer. There were many more people from Bosanski Petrovac, but

21 there were also people from Kljuc, Kulen Vakuf, Orahovac, so from the

22 larger area of Bosanski Petrovac as well, not only from the town of

23 Bosanski Petrovac.

24 Q. And the camp of Kozila, was that separate from the one you've just

25 been talking about at the Bosnaplast?

Page 16266

1 A. There was no camp at Bosnaplast. It was just a logistical

2 centre. The camp was in Kozila. And before that, the only prison was the

3 police building in Bosanski Petrovac. But when it became too small, then

4 people were transferred to Kozila. Can you please repeat your question?

5 I'm afraid I've lost you for a moment. I don't know what you actually

6 asked me.

7 Q. Don't worry. Again, if I can just remind you, Mr. Hidic, if

8 you'll just answer the question. But I actually asked you whether Kozila

9 was in a separate place from the Bosnaplast facility you described, and

10 you've explained that it was.

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Yes. Thank you. You can put that document away.

13 Now, I want to move really now to the final moment or time in

14 Petrovac, first of all, and ask you about work obligation. Were you made

15 to do work obligation?

16 A. Yes, of course. All the people of military age, and this applied

17 to Muslims as well, had to respond to the call-ups. Those call-ups were

18 rather strange. They bore a stamp of the Drvar command, and this caused

19 confusion. However, people were afraid, and they responded to these

20 call-ups and then organised groups which always included some members of

21 Muslims to leave such groups, and these groups were escorted, they were

22 guarded, and they were taken for work. Mostly into the field, to the

23 farms. It was in June and July, the period of farm works. And they also

24 had to dig trenches for the telephone cable from Bosanski Petrovac to

25 Drinic and they also had to dig canals along the facility that was being

Page 16267

1 built by Autotransport Bosanski Petrovac in the vicinity of the town and

2 they were also used for all sorts of loading, unloading, for preparing

3 timber, logs, and the most important thing is that these people were also

4 used for the cleaning of military --

5 --- Break taken at 10.14 a.m.

6 --- On resuming at 10.18 a.m.

7 JUDGE JANU: For the record, we will resume in half an hour.

8 --- Recess taken at 10.18 a.m.

9 --- On resuming at 10.53 a.m.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: That shows you what a little shrimp can do to you.

11 MS. KORNER: Would Your Honour like to tell us which restaurant it

12 was so we don't go there?

13 Q. Mr. Hidic, I was asking you about work obligation. We already

14 looked at a document in relation to that. But can I ask you in

15 particular, what were you made to do?

16 A. I had one call-up on the 24th of July, in front of my former

17 company, Bosnaplast. I started from there. We didn't know where we were

18 taken to. There were some 50 of us in a bus. There were also escorts,

19 five military policemen, and there was also a driver. So the total number

20 of people on that bus was around 55, 56. We didn't know where we were

21 being taken, but it was indicated in the call-up paper that we should

22 bring access.

23 On that morning, I responded to that call, although around those

24 days I was not feeling well, in 1991. I had been treated in the hospital

25 in Bihac, and also in Zagreb, at the Jordanovac hospital, where I stayed

Page 16268

1 about a month and I was still undergoing therapy in that particular period

2 of time. So to resume, we went by bus towards Bihac, Vrbas, Krnjeusa, and

3 further on, we took the dirt road towards Bosanska Krupa. As we

4 approached Bosanska Krupa, we took the road towards Veliki Gradic, the

5 road on the left. There the school had been transformed into a barracks

6 and the whole place was, so to say, besieged by the army. I knew most of

7 the troops because they were locals. And it seems that the Bosanski

8 Petrovac units was stationed there.

9 From there, when our escorts received new orders, from there we

10 went towards Mali Radic, towards the front line, the delineation line. We

11 came to the area called Grabez, and that's where we were taken to the

12 front line, where Serbian soldiers were.

13 Q. Just pause for a moment, please. When you got there, was there

14 any firing or shelling going on?

15 A. Yes. We heard several grenades being fired, either from a tank or

16 from artillery weapons. That is how much I know about artillery and that

17 type of fire. So we arrived there and we were told to stay on the bus,

18 although it was rather hot. I believe that it was the hottest day in

19 1992. We waited there for well over two hours, while one of the military

20 policemen went somewhere in a Jeep. And in the meantime, while we were

21 waiting for his return, all of a sudden we could hear a song, shrieks, the

22 sound of an engine. A group of troops came in a Pinzgauer, a military

23 vehicle. They did not wear military uniforms. They wore all sorts of

24 military uniforms. I believe the group numbered up to ten people. Among

25 them I recognised two men that I knew from Bosanski Petrovac. One of them

Page 16269

1 was Mladjo Marjanovic. He drove that vehicle. And there was also Gorinko

2 Jakovljevic, a disabled person who had a congenital disease. I believe

3 that he was a journalist. He had --

4 Q. I'm sorry. Can I stop you, Mr. Hidic? This is important, but we

5 don't need all the description. Were these two men Serbs?

6 A. Yes. They were both Serbs. And those who were with them stormed

7 onto the bus. When they saw the bus and when they saw that they were

8 Muslims, and on that bus they stormed into the bus, they broke --

9 actually, the door was open, both the front door and the back door were

10 open. One of the guards asked the driver to leave the doors open. They

11 stormed onto the bus. They started forking out their knives, their

12 daggers. They started talking to us. They started saying: Oh, here are

13 the Turks. Let's inspect their passports. Let's see if they have visas.

14 Their voices were really intimidating and the way they talked to us was

15 rather scary. They started asking all sorts of questions.

16 At that moment, I could not pay attention to everything that was

17 going on at the bus, because one of those guys who entered the bus by way

18 of the front door targeted me. I was in the front seat together with

19 another young man. I was next to the window, and this young man was by

20 the passage. And there was a rail in front of us, so I couldn't move. I

21 couldn't go backward, I couldn't go anywhere. They were asking all sorts

22 of questions. They were looking for cigarettes. They wanted to see if

23 anybody had a ring or a necklace or a golden chain. They asked if anybody

24 had money.

25 At that moment, nobody had any valuables on them, because,

Page 16270

1 according to the call-up papers, we all assumed that we would be

2 performing some work, and everybody prepared themselves to work.

3 Q. Just pause there, please. All right. You started to tell us one

4 of the people targeted you, one of the people who came onto the bus. What

5 did he do to you?

6 A. He didn't do anything, but he held a bayonet, a knife, against my

7 breast, and I just remained sitting, at, so to say, at the point of his

8 knife. And thanks to another person who pushed him further into the bus,

9 because he wanted himself to get on to see if there was anybody that he

10 would be interested in, I believe that this saved me, because this second

11 person who got on the bus took a little notebook from his pocket and

12 started asking about different people, different Muslims. And we would

13 then say: No, this person is not here. And then finally he cursed at us

14 and said: How come these people are not on the bus? And then he asked:

15 Well, who are we? Who are you people? Then we said: We are from

16 Bosanski Petrovac. And then he said: Well, that explains why these

17 people that I'm looking for are not here.

18 The policemen who were supposed to guard us did not do their job.

19 They just let these people get on the bus and ill-treat us in different

20 ways and threaten us. They marched through the bus. They collected all

21 of our cigarettes and lighters. That's all that they could take, and then

22 they got off the bus.

23 Later on, one of the people who were on the bus and who were

24 sitting in front, next to me, on the other side, he asked the driver,

25 Mitar Jevic, who was driving the bus, he asked him: How did the policemen

Page 16271

1 allow these people get on the bus and do whatever they wanted to do to

2 us? His answer was: Did you think that we would risk our lives for you?

3 If they got hold of somebody, they would not have stayed alive. So I

4 suppose we were just lucky, and we were saved with the help of a guard.

5 We were not harmed in any way.

6 Q. Thank you. And was the end result that you never did any work

7 that day but were just driven back to Petrovac after some hours?

8 A. I believe that they did not know why we were sent here, why we

9 were brought here. Later on, all sorts of stories were --

10 Q. Don't worry about all sorts of stories. All I'm interested in is

11 whether you did any work that day or you were simply driven back to

12 Petrovac.

13 A. We were driven back to Bosanski Petrovac, but we were not supposed

14 to get there before 7.00. That's why, on the way back, as we left that

15 road and as we arrived at the road towards Krnjeusa, we were taken off the

16 bus and we had to walk behind the bus for some 20 kilometres or so,

17 because we were not supposed to arrive there before 7.00.

18 Q. Is this situation that that was the only day that you personally

19 were asked to do work obligation?

20 A. Yes. That was the only time that I was asked to do that, and

21 there were a lot of stories about that, and I really, until the very end,

22 until the moment I was expelled from Bosanski Petrovac, was never asked to

23 do any work obligation, but others did go and perform the works that I

24 described to you a little while ago.

25 Q. Now, before I deal with the expulsions, were you yourself ever

Page 16272

1 placed into a detention camp?

2 A. No.

3 Q. How would you describe the town of Bosanski Petrovac during this

4 period, particularly between July and September 1992?

5 A. A little while ago you asked me if I was ever at a camp. I said

6 no. But I believe that Bosanski Petrovac and the Muslims in that town,

7 during the period between June and the moment when they were expelled, in

8 September, were all at a camp, because they were restricted in every

9 possible way.

10 Q. Now, I want you to look, please, now, quickly, at Exhibit P1841,

11 which is a document that you yourself provided to us. If we look at the

12 first page of the copy, does that again contain your writing and

13 underlining?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. It's dated the 2nd of July, Crisis Staff minutes, or rather, they

16 were held on the 1st of July, and we see under item 1, a report on the

17 security situation on the territory, assessing it as delicate, with a

18 popular feeling of discontent, especially directed towards Muslims after

19 the recent events on the front line, and stress that the best and a sure

20 solution for the protection of the Muslims would be to move the

21 population, emphasising that the territory of the municipality was large.

22 Now, that's the beginning of July. Were there any expulsions,

23 actual expulsions as opposed to people leaving, during the period of July

24 and August?

25 A. No.

Page 16273

1 Q. Can we -- thank you very much. And can you look, please, then, at

2 P1843. This is a decision of the Municipal Assembly, the commission for

3 moving out, and on Thursday we looked at the Crisis Staff decision that

4 referred to setting up such a commission, which says that Muslims may move

5 away voluntarily on the following conditions: "If they sign a contract on

6 the exchange of immovable property and if they sign a statement giving

7 their immovable property to the state."

8 And then it sets out further on the actual nuts and bolts, if one

9 likes, of how that's to happen. Now, were you aware and did you yourself

10 eventually have to sign a statement leaving your property to the state.

11 A. Yes. Of course I was aware of this because this information

12 regarding the exchange arrived via the forum of citizens. They wanted

13 somebody to go to the cadastral office in the municipality, to inspect the

14 land books, and those who in the meantime came in touch with the

15 representatives of the Serbian people who resided on the territory of

16 Bosanski Petrovac municipality, and before that resided in Bihac, in other

17 words, who came from the territory of the municipality of Bihac to

18 Bosanski Petrovac. And this was the alleged contract regarding the

19 exchange of property in Bosanski Petrovac and Bihac. Before they could do

20 that, these people had to settle all of their bills, they had to pay all

21 of their utility bills, they had to pay all their taxes. Once you were

22 given the receipt that all of these debts were settled, you were supposed

23 to go to the police administration. There you would apply for the

24 voluntary relinquishing of all your property in view of leaving Bosanski

25 Petrovac.

Page 16274

1 As of that moment, you stopped being the citizen of the town where

2 you lived, where you were born. It was a common practice. This is what

3 was asked from people, and the majority of the people believed that this

4 should be done in this way. A lot of Bosniaks, a lot of Muslims,

5 subscribed to that. They started looking for partners with whom they

6 would sign the contract. However, such contracts were never implemented.

7 Q. Mr. Hidic, I'm sorry to stop you like this, but if you'll

8 recall -- if you just answer very simply the question that I ask you, and

9 then if I need more details or the Court does, we'll ask you for more

10 details. The simple question was: Did you have to sign a statement

11 leaving your property to the state?

12 A. No, I did not a sign such a statement leaving my property to the

13 state, but I had to go to the police administration and release the

14 document on wishing to leave the area.

15 Q. All right. Can you look, please, at a second document, P1844,

16 which is a decision of the 3rd of August of these commissioners. And if

17 you look, please, under the decision, you'll see, just before item AD3,

18 "The commission will establish who can leave the Petrovac municipality,

19 and the condition will be for them to exchange their property or give it

20 to the state," that is, the Serbian municipality of Petrovac. So there

21 were two different methods: One, you could exchange or you could leave,

22 leaving your property to the state. Those who did an exchange, was that

23 with Serbs in Bihac who wished to move to Petrovac?

24 A. No. Those Serbs from Bihac had already arrived in Bosanski

25 Petrovac. That is to say that before the conflict broke out between Bihac

Page 16275

1 and Bosanski Petrovac, I mean before that conflict, they had come to

2 Bosanski Petrovac, not as refugees but at the invitation of the SDS. They

3 left their homes and they came to the territory of the municipality of

4 Bosanski Petrovac. And all these talks went in that direction, that is to

5 say, they had to do with exchanges.

6 Q. All right. If an exchange was arranged by a Muslim in Petrovac,

7 with whom would it be arranged, was it arranged?

8 A. A Serb from Bihac who was already in the territory of the

9 municipality of Bosanski Petrovac.

10 Q. Did those exchanges work, as far as the Muslims were concerned?

11 In other words, were the Muslims able to go to Bihac to take up a Serb

12 property?

13 A. Of course. In the month of July, it was already impossible to

14 leave, because of the war operations. But by way of lists and by way of

15 these contracts, the departure of Muslims from Bosanski Petrovac to Bihac

16 would be organised into the territory where the property of the Serbs was,

17 that is to say, those Serbs who had arrived in Bosanski Petrovac prior to

18 the outbreak of the conflict.

19 Q. So is what you're saying that on paper there was an exchange, but

20 in reality the Muslims never managed to get to Bihac?

21 A. Absolutely. This was just activity on paper, so to speak, if I

22 can put it that way.

23 Q. All right. Can you just briefly, please, look at 1846, which is

24 two of these types of documents that we've been discussing, or three, I

25 think, actually - four.

Page 16276

1 The first relates to a family named Hodzic, who was going to move

2 out. Then the second to -- oh, it's still the Hodzics, I think, actually,

3 it's about declaring that they owned the property and that they conceded

4 it permanently to the Petrovac Municipal Assembly, and so on and so forth.

5 Do you know this particular family?

6 A. Absolutely. I do know this family. This family is from Bjelaj,

7 that is to say, in a neighbourhood that is about 25 kilometres away from

8 Bosanski Petrovac. Muslims, or rather, the Bosniak citizens of this

9 village, stayed on until about the 13th of January. If you look at the

10 date here, that is the 10th of August, that is to say, this was after the

11 expulsion of Muslims from Bosanski Petrovac. This group of Muslims in

12 Bjelaj remained all the way up to the following year, the 13th of January,

13 that is.

14 Q. All right. This is dated the 10th of August, 1992, so that's

15 before.

16 A. I'm sorry. I didn't see this properly. Yes, it is the 10th of

17 August. I'm sorry.

18 Q. All right.

19 A. But this is the period when talks were conducted and when these

20 contracts were being made.

21 Q. All right. Now, can you look next, please, at P1848. This

22 document is from the Yugoslav news agency, and this is Mr. Dosen, the

23 gentleman who I think you said you knew; is that right?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Mr. Dosen. And it talks about, on the 13th of September, that

Page 16277

1 "The mass departure of Muslims from the area of Bosanski Petrovac is

2 still continuing. A column of seven buses with a special escort departed

3 from the village of Biscani, in the direction of Travnik. According to

4 information from the Petrovac office for the exchange of population and

5 property, over the last three days, more than 900 men, women, and children

6 of Muslim ethnicity have moved from the area of Petrovac in the direction

7 of Bihac and Travnik."

8 Now, there is a description of this convoy in the document from

9 the expatriate committee, explaining how the convoy in fact was turned

10 back. And if we look at, please, document 1849, which is the next

11 document, there is the description of the Petrovac SJB -- it's the report

12 to the Banja Luka CSB, in fact, to the chief.

13 You've read both these documents. Are those descriptions that are

14 contained in the document, particularly this one, 1849, a fairly accurate

15 description? I don't want to go through it, Mr. Hidic, so if you'd just

16 say yes or no.

17 A. Well, I don't think that what is written here is absolutely

18 correct. There are some correct assertions, but all of it is not

19 accurate, I mean in relation to Karinovac, when these buses were stopped.

20 Q. All right. Briefly, and I mean briefly, Mr. Hidic, can you tell

21 us what, in your view, is inaccurate. But first of all, can you tell us

22 how you know. Did you know people who were on this convoy?

23 A. Well, of course I found out from these people who were on the

24 second convoy, if I can put it that way. Before that, two buses had left

25 and gone through Vlasic to Travnik. The second one was bigger, that is to

Page 16278

1 say, it involved larger numbers. However, due to the war operations that

2 were taking place during those days at the Vlasic plateau, passage was not

3 possible through Karinovac. This is somewhere at the crossroad on the

4 road between Jajce and Banja Luka, towards Skender Vakuf, so --

5 Q. [Previous translation continues]... stop you, Mr. Hidic. Just

6 look at the report and tell us what is inaccurate, as far as you are

7 concerned, from talking people who were on it.

8 A. There is just a description here of the police administration, or

9 rather, the policemen who gave these people protection, these people who

10 were on the bus. However, there is no mention of how these people were

11 met, how they were intimidated during the night while they were staying in

12 Karinovac. This was done to them not only by the Serb soldiers but also

13 part of the local population. The truth is that this policeman, Ribic,

14 truly accorded full protection in that sense. I can state that. He did

15 protect these people on the bus. But when Radojko came, the situation

16 became even more complicated. If I can put it this way, things became

17 even harder for the people who were on the buses.

18 When he left, it was possible to allow these people to return to

19 Bosanski Petrovac. During the night, during the curfew, they arrived in

20 Bosanski Petrovac. That is where they were when the morning broke, and of

21 course this news spread, like all good news.

22 Now, as for the entire story as to what happened to them on that

23 day in Karinovac, there is only just -- there is just one detail, that

24 they were throwing hand grenades in this bus where they were rolling them

25 on the floor in the bus, where there were women and children, primarily.

Page 16279

1 That is one of the details, I mean as to how these people were mistreated

2 while they were on the buss.

3 Q. And can you -- Radojko is a name that we've seen appearing in the

4 minutes of the Crisis Staff meetings. What was his job?

5 A. He was secretary of the Executive Council. This is a municipal

6 authority. And of course, he was a member of the Executive Board of the

7 SDS of Bosanski Petrovac. As far as I know, he was born in Bosanski

8 Petrovac, somewhere in the surrounding area, but before that, until 1991,

9 they lived in Croatia. He lived in Croatia, in Zagreb. He got a degree

10 in law there, and he was active there and he worked there --

11 Q. Okay. Don't worry about that. I just wanted to know what his job

12 was. I don't want his background as well. Thank you.

13 All right. Can we come, then, please, finally, to your own

14 expulsion. When did that happen?

15 A. The specific answer is the 24th of September, 1992, we had to

16 leave the municipality of Bosanski Petrovac. Of course, this was preceded

17 by very tragic events, very tragic from my point of view. They occurred

18 on the 20th of September. It was a Sunday. We Muslims call it the Black

19 Sunday for the Muslims in Bosanski Petrovac, because on that day, sometime

20 in the evening hours, the news arrived that at the Grmusa front line 17

21 Serb soldiers were killed and that they were brought before the health

22 centre, and that an alarm was sounded then to those who were free then,

23 soldiers and paramilitaries, that it was a free-for-all in the territory

24 of the municipality of Bosanski Samac, that they could do whatever they

25 wanted to the Muslims. And they immediately split up in [Realtime

Page 16280

1 transcript read in error "split up in chiropractors"] troikas as they were

2 called, and they really started carrying out such activities. General

3 panic prevailed, people started running away.

4 Q. I'm sorry. We need to make this clear. You say that 17 Serbs

5 were killed at the front line. Was that within the Petrovac municipality?

6 A. Of course this was at the front line, where the front line was,

7 because on that day, these people had been sent --

8 Q. Stop, please. I want to ask you a series of questions, please. I

9 don't want you to carry on. I just want you to answer these questions,

10 please. First, the front line, you say, was in the Petrovac municipality,

11 front line where in the municipality?

12 A. Of course, it was not in the municipality of Petrovac. It was far

13 away from the urban area, perhaps some 40 kilometres away. That is

14 Grmusa, the Grabez plateau, in the area between Ripac and Pritoka, where

15 the separation line was. So it was quite far away from the centre of the

16 municipality of Bosanski Petrovac.

17 Q. Right. Now, next you say that these 17 Serb soldiers were killed.

18 Killed by whom?

19 A. I think they were killed by sabotage men who got in beyond the

20 separation line, that is to say, further from the Bosnian army.

21 Q. So they were non-Serbs, were they?

22 A. Yes. Yes. Members of the Bosnian army, yes.

23 Q. Now, who was brought before the health centre, and which health

24 centre?

25 A. Of course, the health centre in Bosanski Petrovac, and it was the

Page 16281

1 Serb soldiers who had been sent to the front line that morning.

2 Q. So they arrived in front of the health centre in Bosanski

3 Petrovac. Then you say that they divided into troikas. Do you mean into

4 threes?

5 A. Yes, yes.

6 Q. All right. And then you say they -- I notice that the LiveNote

7 for the moment says, "they were split up in chiropractors," but general

8 panic, you say, prevailed. What did these groups of three do?

9 A. Well, of course, people running all around, there was shooting,

10 there were killings. And I think that during those two days, more

11 killings were committed, during those two days and two nights, that is,

12 than during the preceding three months, actually, from when the war

13 situation started, if I can put it that way, in the territory of the

14 municipality of Bosanski Samac. On the same day, that is to say, between

15 the 20th and the 21st, many people were killed. Also the next day. A

16 large number of people were killed, not only in the town of Bosanski

17 Petrovac, in the centre of town, but also in the villages where Bosniaks

18 lived. We talked about Rasinovac and Bjelaj. So this number far exceeded

19 the number of victims during the intimidation period, as we call it, that

20 is to say, the wartime period from the month of June until the month of

21 September.

22 Q. Now, how was it that all -- or the majority of the Muslims then

23 left the municipality on the 24th of September? Was that by choice or was

24 that by order?

25 A. Oh, no, absolutely no choice. The Muslims didn't have any

Page 16282

1 choice. But I feel that they could hardly wait for this kind of a call.

2 It came from the police, the military police. They used a loudspeaker.

3 They were driving in a vehicle through the streets where the Bosniaks

4 lived, and they said that all the Bosniaks could take everything they

5 could carry, all their personal belongings, and they should meet at the

6 gasoline station, by the hotel, and that they would be transferred to

7 Travnik, to Central Bosnia, and that's exactly what happened. A long

8 column of Muslims, Bosnian Muslims, from Bosanski Petrovac, arrived in

9 this plateau then. Trucks were already waiting, trailers, and also a

10 small number of buses. I don't know exactly which number this involves,

11 but everything was ready to transfer the Muslims.

12 Of course, everybody had to pay for their tickets as well, and the

13 tickets amounted to 50 Deutschmark. I think that almost 99 per cent of

14 the Bosniaks of Bosanski Petrovac left Bosanski Petrovac on that day, or

15 rather, were expelled from Bosanski Petrovac on that day.

16 Q. And what route were you taken to Travnik?

17 A. Well, of course, along the road between Bosanski Petrovac and

18 Kljuc and then Mrkonjic Grad, in the direction of Crna Rijeka, leading

19 from the road towards Banja Luka, Karinovac, then the intersection, or

20 rather, across the bridge, the Vrbas bridge, in the direction of Skender

21 Vakuf, and of course across the Vlasic plateau, somewhere to the line,

22 what they said was the separation line. However, I noticed that the

23 separation line was much lower as regards the Bosniaks who were there at

24 that position. So they were unloaded from the trucks and we were told to

25 go away, not to look anywhere and not to deviate from that road, because

Page 16283

1 there were hills and mountains on either side, and then we went in the

2 direction of Turbe -- and what was the name of this other place? Yes,

3 Travnik.

4 Q. So for the last part of your journey, were you on buses or did you

5 have to walk?

6 A. This last part amounting to 20 kilometres, we had to cover that on

7 foot, that is to say, we didn't have any kind of transportation, none

8 whatsoever.

9 Q. Before you were sent off to complete your journey on foot, on the

10 bus that you were on, were any of you searched or anything taken from you

11 by the Serbs?

12 A. Of course, I was not on the bus. I was in a truck that had a

13 trailer too. My entire family was there as well. Well, I personally did

14 not have such an experience, because we had bad luck on the way, if I can

15 put it that way. We were stopped two or three times, and we lost perhaps

16 two or three hours on account of that. Because the brakes broke down on

17 that particular truck. And we arrived at the line where we were supposed

18 to be taken off. We were the last ones. I was there around midnight.

19 However, those who arrived during the course of the day were indeed

20 exposed to brutal attacks. They had their valuables taken away from them,

21 watches, jewellery, rings, chains, et cetera. Of course, they were

22 threatened by firearms that pointed at their children. That's the way

23 they extorted these valuables from people, money and jewellery, namely.

24 Q. Could you just look, please, at P1861. This is a list,

25 apparently, of people who -- of peoples; of persons who sold real estate

Page 16284

1 in the municipality of Petrovac. Do you know people on this list, and can

2 you indicate, if we look at the first page, which, if any, you knew?

3 A. I practically knew all of these people. We're a small town. We

4 all knew each other, practically. Quite a few of us are even related, and

5 so on and so forth.

6 Q. Did any of those people who you know sell their property?

7 A. No one sold their property. Absolutely not. This has to do with

8 what we discussed a while ago, those contracts and the making of lists of

9 persons who were supposed to go through this exchange of property to the

10 area of Bihac. By your leave: These people really did have contracts

11 that were signed, contracts with representatives of the Serb people from

12 the area of Bihac.

13 Q. Did anybody make it to Bihac?

14 A. Only those who had left before the 27th of May. And of course, a

15 group that went through the International Red Cross. This group consisted

16 of some 30 to 40 passengers. They went to the territory of Bihac in order

17 to have their families reunited. They went from Bosanski Petrovac to

18 Bihac.

19 Q. Now, after that convoy of the 24th of September, how many Muslims,

20 roughly, were left in Bosanski Petrovac?

21 A. I think that the figure is between 70 -- 60 and 70 Muslims, or

22 rather, Bosniaks, who either had something to do with the Serb army, I

23 mean they were mobilised, or there were old men who could not leave, or

24 they had family members in the area of Banja Luka, people who lived in

25 Banja Luka at the time, that is. So they thought that in this way, they

Page 16285

1 could reach Banja Luka. A number of them actually managed to do so.

2 Q. Now, you've seen, through looking through these documents, that

3 throughout October, or in October, the municipality was -- the Crisis

4 Staff was reporting to issue decisions in relation to Muslims in the

5 municipality.

6 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, 1853, 1854, 1855, all in fact dated the

7 28th of October and all effectively repeating earlier orders.

8 Q. Do you know of any Muslims who at that stage, for example, still

9 had their weekend cottages in the Ostrelj settlement?

10 A. No. I believe that I've already answered that question. There

11 were no Bosniaks up there. They did not reside there. They still had,

12 owned, their property up there, but they did not go there.

13 MS. KORNER: If Your Honours look at 1857, which is behind divider

14 52, you'll see that it's the original decision of the 18th of June, but it

15 seems to have been re-issued again on the 28th of October. And all the

16 ones before that, they're all the same day, the 28th of October, and

17 effectively they are literally word for word, although they are not quite

18 as obvious as that for the earlier decisions. And 1859, Petrovac public

19 security station is hereby instructed to increase patrols in areas where

20 large numbers of Muslims live, and especially -- I'm sorry. Perhaps

21 Mr. Hidic, could you have that, 1859.

22 Q. By the 28th of October, were there any Muslims left in the Bjelaj

23 local commune?

24 A. Yes, there were some of them in the local commune of Bjelaj.

25 Q. Yes. Mr. Hidic, thank you very much for your patience. That's

Page 16286

1 all I ask.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner.

3 Now, Mr. Hidic, you will recall that when you started giving

4 evidence here last week, I had explained to you something which I attach

5 great importance to, and that is that you are a witness here with a duty,

6 a responsibility, an obligation, to answer, as fully and as truthfully,

7 each question that is put to you, irrespective of who is putting the

8 question to you. In other words, now you're going to be cross-examined by

9 Mr. Cunningham for -- who is defending Mr. Brdjanin, and the obligation

10 that I mentioned to you, that I referred to just a couple of minutes ago,

11 applies to what you're going to be questioned upon now. You have no right

12 to make any distinction between the Prosecution and the Defence. Your

13 duty is to answer each and every question that will be put to you by

14 Mr. Cunningham. You will be protected if inappropriate questions are put,

15 and you will be allowed not to answer a question only if we say so;

16 otherwise, your duty is to answer each and every question.

17 Mr. Cunningham, it's in your hands.

18 MR. CUNNINGHAM: With your permission, Your Honour, may I move

19 down here?

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly. Please do. Make sure that the

21 audio system is working.

22 MR. CUNNINGHAM: May I proceed, Your Honour.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly. Go ahead, Mr. Cunningham.

24 Cross-examined by Mr. Cunningham:

25 Q. Mr. Hidic, I believe you told us that you are related to Mithid

Page 16287

1 Hidic [sic], who is now the mayor of Bosanski Petrovac?

2 A. Mirsad Hidic.

3 Q. M-i-t-h-i-d, Mithid [sic], that's how I pronounce it. I apologise

4 if I'm not pronouncing it correctly.

5 A. If I may say, Mithad [phoen] Hidic is my relative, but this

6 relationship is not close. We are not close relatives. And if you will

7 also allow me, he is no longer mayor. He was the mayor during the period

8 between 1995 and 1997. That was during the transition period.

9 Q. Okay. You are active in the local party, the local political

10 party, correct?

11 JUDGE AGIUS: You need to specify which party, Mr. Cunningham,

12 because I believe there's more than one party.

13 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Absolutely.

14 Q. Which party are you active in, sir?

15 A. The Party of Democratic Action, or SDA.

16 Q. And what is your position within the SDA?

17 A. Currently I am the president of the Executive Board of this

18 political party in Bosanski Petrovac.

19 Q. And very briefly, sir, tell me what that job entails. What are

20 your responsibilities?

21 A. Could you please clarify what you mean by your question? In what

22 terms?

23 JUDGE AGIUS: What are your functions, in other words? What are

24 your responsibilities as president of the SDA Executive Board in Bosanski

25 Petrovac?

Page 16288

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am the president of the Executive

2 Board and I'm also the president of the municipal organisation on the

3 territory of Bosanski Petrovac municipality.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: What does that mean? A municipal organisation?

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That means --

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Sort of a civic council or local council, or what --

7 maybe a matter of translation, of interpretation, but I don't understand

8 what a municipal organisation is. It's too generic a term. Are you

9 referring to the local council?

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Executive Board is a body, an

11 executive body, that is, and that is above the organisation in the

12 municipal body. It is composed of the representatives of the citizens

13 from Bosanski Petrovac who are all its voluntary members.


15 Q. In the materials given to us by the Prosecutor, there are a number

16 of statements, and you've had the opportunity to read the statements that

17 you gave to the investigators; am I correct?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. There is one statement from 11 November 1999. Does that sound

20 right? Your first statement.

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. There is a second statement of 16 July 2000. Do you remember

23 that?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Could you tell me the circumstances, how it was that you gave the

Page 16289

1 second statement on 16 July 2000. And let me try to clarify the

2 question. Did you go seek out representatives of the Prosecutor's office

3 to give this statement or did they come to you?

4 A. I believe that they came to Bosanski Petrovac. They looked for me

5 and I responded to that, if that is what you mean, how this meeting came

6 about, that is, my meeting with these people, the representatives of the

7 Prosecution.

8 Q. And when they came to your town and sought you out, what did they

9 ask you to do?

10 A. I can't remember exactly, but I know that they asked me questions,

11 that I answered those questions, and so on and so forth.

12 Q. Did they tell you that they needed more clarification in your

13 statement, they wanted more information? Did they make any statements

14 along those lines?

15 A. I can't remember, but I believe that there were questions along

16 those lines as well.

17 Q. I also have access to, and I want to ask you if you remember, your

18 statement of 30 July 2003 [sic], where you provided some clarification to

19 your earlier statements. Do you remember that?

20 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Thank you.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: 2001.

22 MR. CUNNINGHAM: 2001.

23 Q. I apologise to you, sir. You made some clarifications in your

24 statements on 30 July 2001. Do you remember that?

25 A. I believe that we had one meeting. I don't remember whether this

Page 16290

1 was in 2001. And when I was shown this document, there were some

2 corrections regarding some of the previous questions that I had answered.

3 I don't know whether the mistakes were up to me or the recording of that

4 statement. And those were all really minor corrections, involving some

5 names of some people.

6 Q. You were then brought to The Hague and you met with the

7 Prosecutors before you testified. Correct?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. And there was another statement, a very short statement, that was

10 produced to us following your meeting with the Prosecutor. Do you

11 remember that?

12 MS. KORNER: It's actually incorrect. The statement was made

13 before he had a meeting with me.

14 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Okay. Well, then I apologise.

15 Q. What I'm -- to get right to the point, Mr. Hidic, on the 21st of

16 May, 2003, you made a statement in your native language about additional

17 information. Correct?

18 A. Yes. When I handed over some of the documents that I had brought

19 with me.

20 Q. Those are the only four written statements -- or let me rephrase

21 it. Are those the only four written statements that you have made

22 regarding the events that you have testified about?

23 A. I have never counted them, but I believe that I had four meetings

24 with the Prosecutor, so I believe that four statements have ensued from

25 these meetings that I've had in the past period.

Page 16291

1 Q. Have you made any statements, other statements, in connection with

2 interviews with anyone other than the Prosecutor or a representative of

3 the Prosecutor's office?

4 A. I have mentioned that on my arrival in Travnik in 1992, I gave a

5 statement to some international representatives.

6 Q. Okay.

7 A. I don't know who they were.

8 Q. Fair enough. Let me ask the next question. Prior to your

9 testimony, have you met with any other person other than the Prosecutor or

10 a representative of the Prosecutor's office to discuss your case?

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Which case?

12 MR. CUNNINGHAM: To discuss -- excuse me, Your Honour. I

13 apologise.

14 Q. To discuss your testimony in this case.

15 A. You asked me whether I have met before -- can you please explain?

16 I don't think I have understood you correctly.

17 MS. KORNER: I think it may help if you make it clear, if it's

18 made clear whether you mean a person in authority, some kind of authority

19 in BiH, or what have you.

20 MR. CUNNINGHAM: I'll clear it up.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Cunningham. You can go direct [Microphone not

22 activated] --


24 Q. Mr. Hidic, have you discussed your testimony that you were about

25 to give in this case with, for example, your friends back home in Bosanski

Page 16292

1 Petrovac?

2 A. I did not discuss this, but we discussed the things that took

3 place in Bosanski Petrovac every day. I don't know whether -- who you

4 have in mind specifically, but what I can tell you, that we have daily

5 conversations about that at all levels. We talk amongst ourselves, we

6 talk at the local forum of administration, so every day we talk about

7 these things.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: What we are interested in knowing is whether anyone

9 you may have discussed with the fact that you were going to come here and

10 give testimony, give evidence, whether you actually went into details,

11 whether you were told what to say, whether you were influenced in any

12 manner, whether you were reminded about things that you should mention or

13 not mention. Did you discuss the fact that you were going to give

14 evidence here and the substance or the would-be substance of your evidence

15 with anyone, be it individuals, be it authorities, whatever?

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Now I understand the question. When

17 the Defence counsel put this question to me, I did not understand it

18 properly. So now I can answer that I have not had any contacts or

19 conversations about the testimony that I was to give here. So no, I have

20 not discussed my testimony with anybody.


22 Q. Okay. I don't know if you have your very first 11 November 1999

23 statement available.

24 MR. CUNNINGHAM: If he doesn't, may I --

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's -- usher, please --

Page 16293

1 MR. CUNNINGHAM: -- have it tendered to him.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Give him all the four statements straight

3 away, to spare us having to come --

4 MS. KORNER: There are three, Your Honour.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: There are four.

6 MS. KORNER: There are four. It's a mystery to me.

7 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Actually, the fourth one that I have --

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Three in 1999 -- 06/07/2000, 30/07/2001, and the

9 last one of the 21st of May

10 MS. KORNER: Yes, Your Honour. It's the same -- it's the 92 bis.

11 There are only actually three statements.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, but --

13 MS. KORNER: Yes. It was simply to -- he attested to the truth of

14 the contents and made some changes.


16 Q. Mr. Hidic, if you could go to your very first statement, that is

17 your statement of 11 November 1999, the very last -- I believe it's the

18 very last paragraph of that statement. And I'm going to read a paragraph

19 from it, and I just want to get your comment on this. I believe that the

20 end of that statement says: "I was doing research on these things that

21 happened in Bosanski Petrovac in the cause of my duties. It was putting

22 things into chronological order, locating witnesses, et cetera."

23 I believe that's the very last entry on your statement, 11

24 November 1999. Have you found that?

25 A. Yes, I have.

Page 16294

1 Q. What did you mean by that?

2 A. This was an explanation that had to do with the war period, when I

3 had the opportunity to collect the statements of the eyewitnesses leaving

4 the territory of Bosanski Petrovac. So this has to do only with the war

5 period.

6 Q. Okay. What I think I heard you say is that that statement has to

7 do with the fact that while you -- when you returned to Bosanski Petrovac,

8 one of the things that you did was go to the government buildings and look

9 for and collect documents. Correct?

10 A. Yes. When I returned to Bosanski Petrovac, I had the opportunity,

11 and I had access to the Bosanski Petrovac municipality building, and there

12 I found all the documents that were left behind in the archives of that

13 building in Bosanski Petrovac.

14 Q. And I believe you told us that that wasn't your immediate concern

15 when you returned to Bosanski Petrovac, that those documents came to you

16 after about a month.

17 A. Yes. When I returned, or a month after the return of the citizens

18 of Bosanski Petrovac returned in an organised manner, and that is

19 something I was in charge with, I went to the municipal building every

20 day. That's where my work took me, and that work was of humanitarian

21 nature. I was the coordinator of issues, humanitarian issues, and

22 obviously I had access to these documents, and people knew about that, but

23 not because I collected these things for somebody. I asked for these

24 documents for my own personal needs, to complement the things that I had

25 already recorded during the war. I wanted to compare what I heard from

Page 16295

1 the eyewitnesses with these other documents. I wanted to arrive at the

2 truth for my own personal reasons. I was not instructed to do so, because

3 there were already bodies which were already dealing with those issues in

4 a very specific way.

5 Q. The documents that you have provided to the Prosecutor's office,

6 including those documents that you brought with you to The Hague, were

7 those the only documents that you collected upon your return to Bosanski

8 Petrovac?

9 A. They were not the only ones. This is just one source, one office,

10 or one archives. Some people who had had access to these materials came

11 to me, brought them to me, because they knew I collected them, and that's

12 why I recorded on the top, on the front page of every document, in the

13 order in which the sessions had taken place. I filed them as I received

14 them from the people who had gotten hold of them. This was accessible to

15 everybody. The archives was accessible to everybody, because it was not

16 under a lock; it was not safeguarded by anybody.

17 Q. I take it you collected many, many documents upon your return to

18 Bosanski Petrovac.

19 A. I wouldn't say that there were many documents. I mostly collected

20 the things that I was interested in, or some newspaper articles. There

21 were many such articles printed in Bosanski Petrovac, but I only collected

22 those that interested me, in order to find out what was going on in

23 Bosanski Petrovac after we had left.

24 Q. I'm going to change topics on you. I want to ask you a question.

25 You've been shown, and you obviously know about the layout, the map, that

Page 16296

1 is, Bosanski Petrovac. How far is Bihac from the city, the town of

2 Bosanski Petrovac?

3 A. 54 kilometres exactly.

4 Q. Okay. You told us that the municipality of Bosanski Petrovac does

5 not share a border with Croatia, but can you tell us how far it is from

6 the centre of town in Bosanski Petrovac to the Croatian border?

7 A. Croatian border? I never measured that distance, but along the

8 Una valley towards Lapac and Kulen Vakuf, I believe that this is the

9 shortest road towards Bosanski Pravac [phoen], or maybe not the shortest

10 road, but the shortest as the crow flies, that is, between Bosanski

11 Petrovac and the Republic of Croatia.

12 Q. And tell us how far that is, roughly.

13 A. I believe that this is up to 35 kilometres, obviously, if you take

14 the road, then it is a bit longer.

15 Q. And when did the hostilities, when did the actual combat fighting

16 start in Croatia?

17 A. It was in 1991, of course.

18 Q. And what month?

19 A. I don't know exactly, but I believe that it was in the second part

20 of 1991.

21 Q. I want to take you back now to 1990 and 1991, because you've told

22 us about how things started changing in Bosanski Petrovac, and I want to

23 ask you about some of the things that you saw and heard. The first area

24 that I want to talk to you about is how, in the late 1980s and early

25 1990s, you started seeing and hearing about a number of rallies being held

Page 16297

1 by Serbs and the political parties associated with the Serbs. One of the

2 things that you told us that was happening was there was an attempt or

3 discussion to exhume bodies of Serb partisans who had died fighting the

4 Nazis during the Second World War. Do you remember that?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. And there were -- I believe you told us that there were rallies

7 and meetings dealing with that. Correct?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. The move to exhume the bodies, was that an effort to have these

10 individuals buried, buried in a manner consist with their religion?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. You certainly didn't oppose that, did you?

13 A. Absolutely not.

14 Q. You talked about how at these rallies dealing with the partisans

15 who died fighting in World War II, you talked about the rallies. Did you

16 ever hear or become aware of the fact of the accused speaking at any of

17 those rallies?

18 A. First of all, I would like to ask you not to mention the

19 partisans, because this is not about partisans; it is about the

20 representatives of the Serb people, as has been said, allegedly. But I

21 must say that there is the other part of the truth, namely, that in this

22 pit, along with the bones of the Serb civilians who were killed in 1941,

23 and in some other years, there are the bones of their representatives of

24 some other ethnic groups, primarily Croats, and also Muslims who were

25 brought there and killed. So this is not only a pit containing the bones

Page 16298

1 of the members of one ethnic group. The bones of others were there too.

2 Of course, historical facts point to that, and they were kept silent about

3 in the preceding period. So please do not mention the partisans, because

4 the partisans absolutely - how should I put this? - partisans were not

5 killed there and not thrown into that pit.

6 Q. I appreciate your answer, but my question was: At any of these

7 rallies dealing with the exhumation, did you hear the accused speak or

8 hear of him speaking at any of these rallies? That was my question.

9 A. Of course, if this has to do with the accused who is sitting here

10 in this courtroom, I can say that I did not, and I cannot claim that the

11 accused was not present. I don't know about that. But to the best of my

12 knowledge, he did not speak there, no.

13 Q. Let me talk to you about SDS rallies. During this time period,

14 other than -- let me rephrase. In addition to the rallies involving the

15 exhumation of the bodies, the SDS also had rallies in anticipation of the

16 election that was forthcoming?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. The SDA also had rallies as well; correct?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. And at those rallies, would it be -- and you attended those

21 rallies, did you not?

22 A. Absolutely. Both rallies. If you are talking about the founding

23 rallies, yes.

24 Q. Okay. And at those founding rallies, the SDS, their

25 representatives, discussed what they could do to help their constituents;

Page 16299

1 correct?

2 A. Unfortunately, this founding rally - and I am talking about the

3 founding rally - was absolutely not dealing with what the SDS would do.

4 The rally was used for something quite different. Guests who participated

5 in the rally said some words that were absolutely terrifying, and it was

6 quite clear to every citizen in Bosanski Petrovac at the time that major

7 changes had taken place that would indeed have effects that were

8 corroborated by the future that followed. Very little reference was made

9 to crucial issues, like what they would do when they would come to power

10 in terms of the economy or what they would do in terms of further

11 developing the political system, if compared to the one that existed

12 beforehand.

13 Q. Okay. Part of what -- you told us that there were changes with

14 the election, with what happened after the election, and one of the things

15 that you told us changed was you started to see less channels on TV. Do

16 you remember that testimony?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. And I believe you told us that what had happened is stations from,

19 for example, Sarajevo and other places, could not be received in Bosanski

20 Petrovac. Correct?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. That was one event or one thing that limited the amount of news

23 and programming and information that came from the TV. Correct?

24 A. It came from one direction only, that is to say, the Serb media.

25 Q. You had less channels. You also saw -- another reason you saw

Page 16300

1 less TV is because there were problems with the electricity, there were

2 some power outages, where at times you couldn't get radio or TV. Correct?

3 A. Well, since Ostrelj was destroyed in 1991, there were only two

4 programmes that had to do with Bosnia-Herzegovina. That was BH programme

5 1 of the Sarajevo television, programmes 1 and 2. They went through

6 Ostrelj only. Of course, some citizens from Bosanski Petrovac could also

7 follow the HTV programme that came from the transmitter at Pljesevica.

8 There were very few people who could follow the TV programme broadcast via

9 Kozara. There were very few. Perhaps some people could in the

10 municipality of Bosanski Petrovac follow that programme as well. I mean,

11 this is due to the altitude, the varying altitude in different parts of

12 the municipality -- I beg your pardon. Radio Sarajevo. It was very hard

13 to hear that, even in normal times. But starting from 1991, it was very,

14 very hard to hear Radio Sarajevo, and by 1992 it had become virtually

15 impossible. But we could hear Belgrade so clearly. We could follow it

16 during the war.

17 Q. Here's my point, and I think you told us this earlier: During

18 this time period what you started to hear was primarily Serbian broadcasts

19 that you characterised as very pro-Serbian. Would that be a fair

20 statement?

21 A. Yes, to the extent to which we could follow the Serb programme,

22 until we lost that too, that is to say, until there was no more

23 electricity, things like that.

24 Q. In one of the examples that the Prosecutor showed you was example

25 P1811. If we could show that to the witness.

Page 16301


2 MR. CUNNINGHAM: 1811, please.

3 Q. Do you remember looking at that exhibit, Mr. Hidic?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. And I believe you told us there was no date on this. And if we

6 look at the face of the document, there is no date. Correct?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. You don't know when this was broadcast, but would you agree with

9 me that it would make sense, by looking at the face of the document, that

10 it had to have started -- it had to have been broadcast after the start of

11 the fighting with Croatia?

12 A. I really cannot say. I cannot give an answer to this question,

13 because indeed I see this from a textual point of view, but I really never

14 had the opportunity of hearing this.

15 Q. Okay. I would like, with the Court's permission, to show you

16 another exhibit, which is P1834. We know by looking at the face of this

17 document that it is a -- it's dated 18 June 1992; correct?

18 A. The 18th of June. That's what it says here.

19 Q. And it appears to me that it is a directive from the Bosanski

20 Petrovac Municipal Assembly Crisis Staff to the radio station, telling

21 them to broadcast text and music to raise the combat readiness of the Serb

22 people. Do you see where that says that in that document?

23 A. I think that this could be heard over the local radio, that a

24 turnaround had been made as far as this local station was concerned, while

25 I managed to follow this radio station. That was its point, not only to

Page 16302

1 raise morale, but how should I put this? - there was an ethnic thrust, if

2 I can put it that way.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Cunningham and Ms. Korner, I have arranged with

4 the interpreters and the technicians have very kindly agreed that we sit

5 for a further ten minutes so that we recover the ten minutes we lost

6 earlier when I was not feeling well. So I thank the interpreters and the

7 technicians, and you can go ahead until 20 to 1.00.

8 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Thank you, Your Honour.

9 Q. The last two documents that I've shown you, Mr. Hidic, would you

10 agree with me that these documents are pro-Serbian, as you put it, that

11 they had an ethnic thrust to them? Correct?

12 A. If you expect me to give that kind of answer, I really cannot give

13 an answer to that question. I mean, on the basis of these two documents,

14 I cannot really say that they are nationalist. They have a completely

15 different role. They are of a different nature. And of course, somebody

16 did use them at that point in time.

17 Q. You would agree with me that they were directed to the Serbian

18 population, rather than the Bosniak population or the Croat population?

19 A. Of course. Of course. Of course. Of course. That's as clear as

20 daylight.

21 Q. And in there, it talks about combat and fighting for Serbian

22 survival and things like that; correct?

23 A. As far as I could see from the first proclamation.

24 Q. And wouldn't it make sense to broadcast information like this over

25 the radio when the vast majority of the people in the army at this stage

Page 16303

1 were Serbs?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. The Bosnian population in the vast majority -- excuse me, the

4 Bosniak population, the Muslim population, in the vast majority of cases,

5 had declined to be mobilised. Correct?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And in your statements, you talk about the mobilisation that

8 happened during the early 1990s and in 1991. Do you remember those

9 statements in your written statements that you gave to the Prosecutor? Do

10 you remember talking about mobilisation in your statements?

11 A. I don't know how much I talked about mobilisation, but it's

12 possible that I did mention it, and it's possible that I did make some

13 statements to that effect.

14 Q. Well, if you need to refresh your recollection about those

15 statements, they're up there, so please take your time, because I'm going

16 to ask you some questions about that. So if you need to, please look at

17 the statements to refresh your recollection.

18 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, while that's happening, can I just raise

19 one matter in respect of this document. This is one of the documents that

20 objection was taken to by Mr. Ackerman, on the grounds that it came from

21 AID and that it wasn't signed or stamped. Your Honour, it's now being

22 used, I gather, to assist the defence case, and I'm taking it that it's

23 accepted as an authentic document; otherwise, the questions make no sense.

24 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Judge, we're not waiving any prior objection that

25 we may have made.

Page 16304












12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts. Pages 16304 to 16315.













Page 16316

1 MS. KORNER: Well, Your Honour, I'm sorry. I know it's not

2 Mr. Cunningham, because it's not his objection, but I just want to make

3 this point for about the 999th time. Sweeping objections are made to the

4 admissibility. It is suggested that anything that comes from AID

5 potentially is forged, it's not signed or sealed, it's potentially an

6 invention. Then what happens is, what's contained in the document is put

7 to the witness as though it's the truth, and accepted. Now --

8 JUDGE AGIUS: I think you are stepping into an area which we will

9 definitely --

10 MS. KORNER: I agree, Your Honour, but --

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Because obviously what you are mentioning is

12 something that we will definitely have to take into consideration when we

13 will later on evaluate the objection that the Defence raised against all

14 documents coming from AID. Because as you well know, there could as well

15 be some documents coming from AID which are absolutely without any trace

16 of tenderability or whatever, others that -- what use has been made of

17 these documents by the Defence, if any, will, of course, carry its weight,

18 you know.

19 MS. KORNER: Well, Your Honour, the only point that I'm trying to

20 make is that it's almost impossible to sort out, when one is looking at

21 the transcript after that, without going back to look at the objections,

22 if the Defence carry on by saying: We object to all of this. There's no

23 value to all of this. And then use the documents to put the contents to

24 the witness, clearly accepting what's said. And I really, for, again, I

25 say for the 999th time, I invite Mr. Ackerman to consider carefully before

Page 16317

1 issuing these blanket objections, whether they're justified, and in the

2 event that the documents are to be used by the Defence, to at least make

3 it clear that they're withdrawing their objection.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Cunningham.

5 MR. CUNNINGHAM: May I proceed, Judge?



8 Q. Mr. Hidic, I asked you to look at your statements to refresh your

9 recollection with regard to the statements you made about mobilisation. I

10 want to talk to you about that. At this time that we're talking about,

11 1990, 1991, the military obligation extended to all, irrespective of

12 whether they were Bosniak, Croat, or Serb. Correct?

13 A. Absolutely. That's the way it was from the very outset. But let

14 me tell you one thing: Mobilisation is something that people were dealing

15 with in Bosanski Petrovac, say, two years prior to the outbreak of the

16 war, perhaps even before that. They started dealing with mobilisation a

17 lot earlier, before all these things were said in 1991.

18 Q. Well, during the critical period that we're talking about, 1990

19 and 1991, you've already told us that the vast majority of Bosniaks did

20 not respond, did not agree to be called up to mobilisation. Right?

21 A. Of course that's right. The public was aware of the fact that the

22 presidency of the state, or rather, the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina at

23 the time, did not approve of mobilisation, did not approve of that

24 mobilisation that was being carried out at that time. Military conscripts

25 who were Bosniaks probably took advantage of that, and therefore did not

Page 16318

1 report to units that were mentioned in their call-up papers.

2 Q. And there would be consequences under the law for someone who

3 didn't respond to the call-up, someone who did not respond to

4 mobilisation. Is that a fair statement?

5 A. I think that it was said that there would be consequences, but it

6 never happened that anybody was personally held accountable for not having

7 responded to the call-up; at least, I am not aware of any such thing

8 having taken place in Bosanski Petrovac, that either a Serb or a Bosniak

9 was held accountable for not responding to the call-up. Because in the

10 beginning, neither of these two ethnic groups responded to the call-up.

11 Q. Are you aware of anyone that lost their job, especially anyone who

12 had a government job, for failing to respond to the mobilisation order?

13 A. Of course, this happened in 1992, when there was general

14 mobilisation, or rather, when there was an order concerning mobilisation,

15 and it primarily came from the Serb leadership, and it had to do with

16 mobilisation. But I'm talking only about the municipality of Bosanski

17 Petrovac.

18 Q. So I don't know if you ever answered my question. Are you aware

19 of anyone who lost their job for failing to be called up?

20 JUDGE AGIUS: He answered before. He said: Of course, this

21 happened in 1992. So he did answer your question.

22 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Okay, Your Honour. I just didn't take "of

23 course" as an answer, as an affirmative. If I could show the witness

24 P1815.

25 Q. If we look at that exhibit, Mr. Hidic, doesn't that exhibit

Page 16319

1 reflect that - and this is maybe in the second paragraph down - that there

2 are penalties under the law for those who -- for conscripts who fail to

3 respond to mobilisation? Is that reflected in the middle of that

4 document?

5 A. Yes. Yes, that's what this document says, and I believe that this

6 was carried out, in part, but later on. As for the number of persons who

7 were called up to Knin, Zeljava, and Bihac, this is the territory of

8 Croatia, and that is why people avoided responding to that call-up. They

9 were trying to avoid going to these particular areas. Zeljava is an

10 airport near Bihac, and this is the territory of Croatia. Of course,

11 Bosniaks were trying to avoid that. They avoided going to such units.

12 But there were cases when people, due to this imperative that was

13 mentioned here, that is, the possibility of criminal prosecution, that

14 they actually did go to these units. When we're talking about 1991, the

15 end of 1991, that is.

16 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Judge, you had indicated you wanted to go to

17 12.40, and this is a perfect starting point.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: We will have a break now, resuming at 2.00, and

19 we'll sit right through to 4.00.

20 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.41 p.m.

21 --- On resuming at 2.05 p.m.

22 [Trial Chamber confers with registrar]

23 JUDGE AGIUS: The witness.

24 [The witness entered court]

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Please take a seat.

Page 16320

1 Mr. Cunningham.

2 MR. CUNNINGHAM: May it please the Court.

3 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Hidic. When we left, we were talking about

4 the changes that you saw in your hometown, your municipality of Bosanski

5 Petrovac, and I want to talk about something else you spoke about with the

6 Prosecutor last Thursday, and that has to do with how, in your view,

7 Bosniak men and women were losing their job. Before you came up -- I

8 requested that the usher tender Exhibit P1819 to you, and to refresh your

9 recollection, and I want you to take your time to look at this, my notes

10 reflect that that is an exhibit in which Dragan Milanovic moved to have

11 the directors of the power supply company, the director the veterinary

12 station and the director the post, telegraph, and telegram all be

13 removed.

14 Do you remember, first of all, last Thursday, talking about this

15 exhibit and this event?

16 A. Yes, I do.

17 Q. And I believe you told us that all three of the directors were

18 Bosniaks; correct?

19 A. Correct.

20 Q. And only two of the three were removed, and the director of the

21 post, telegraph, and telegram remained because, and I'm going to use your

22 words, he was an expert. Is that a fair statement?

23 JUDGE AGIUS: You said because he was an expert, so

24 indispensable. But also because he was married to a Serb.

25 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I was about to say the same thing. It's

Page 16321

1 page 50 of the transcript of last Thursday.


3 Q. Would you agree with me, Mr. Hidic, this was an example of a

4 Bosniak man keeping his employment, at least in part, because he was an

5 expert in his field?

6 A. Yes. I can confirm that you are partly correct. But in any case,

7 before the month of June or early in June he was replaced by a Serb, who

8 was also an SDS member, of course.

9 Q. And in your days and months looking at documents in Petrovac, did

10 you find anything that corroborated that, any documents that would

11 corroborate what you've just told us?

12 A. The fact is that by the end of June of 1992, no Bosniaks worked in

13 Bosanski Petrovac. They did not have an employment in any of the

14 services, ranging from janitors to doctors.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: But you did not answer the question. You did not

16 answer the question. The question was whether you had -- whether you

17 found any documents proving or testifying to the termination of the

18 employment of this person and to his substitution by a Serb. Did you come

19 across any document which referred to these two events?

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. There are the minutes of the

21 Crisis Staff, which deal with that and which says that the former director

22 was replaced by Mr. Sokunovic, and this document indicates the exact time,

23 the exact date when this was done.


25 Q. And is that a document that you brought with you from Bosanski

Page 16322

1 Petrovac?

2 A. Yes. This document is among the documents that I brought with me.

3 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I think we looked at it. It's one of

4 the documents that we looked at on Thursday. I'll try and find it.


6 Q. Following up on what you just said, I believe you just told us

7 that after a certain date, there were no Bosniaks in any position in

8 Petrovac. Correct?

9 A. That is correct.

10 Q. I want to talk about you and the head of finances. Now, I believe

11 you told us that you worked until mid-June of 1992. Correct?

12 A. Absolutely correct.

13 Q. And you were told, sometime in mid-June, simply not to return to

14 work; right?

15 A. Yes. The man who came to collect the keys from me told me exactly

16 that.

17 Q. Were you ever asked to take a loyalty oath to the government?

18 A. Not me personally.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Cunningham.

20 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Yes, sir.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated] Exhibit P1876, decision

22 of -- Mr. Mersad Knezovic [phoen], present acting manager of PTT. Krjac

23 Petrovac [phoen] is dismissed from duty. Sokunovic [phone] from Petrovac

24 is appointed to PTT, and so on, acting manager in wartime.

25 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Thank you, Your Honour.

Page 16323

1 Q. I had asked you if you had to take a loyalty oath. You told me

2 that you didn't. I'd like you to look at Exhibit P1837, and this has to

3 do with the dismissal of Senada Mehdin, and if I've mispronounced that, I

4 apologise.

5 A. I have a problem. I have difficulties reading this because the

6 part where the name is mentioned is somewhat blurred, and there are black

7 stains over that part, so I have difficulties reading it.

8 Q. Well, let me ask you this: You know, either from your personal

9 knowledge and conversations with her or from what you've heard from

10 someone else, that she was sacked. Correct?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And that was around the end of June/mid-June, something in that

13 time frame, of 1992. Correct?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Because you couldn't read the document, because it might have been

16 blurred, I want you to assume with me that the document said that she had

17 been discharged because she did not want to swear a loyalty to the

18 government, okay? Assuming that, would it make sense to have someone like

19 the head of financing or accounting for the government doing a vital

20 function during wartime if she wasn't loyal to the government?

21 A. I don't know how she found employment. Her job was not

22 advertised. That's where she found herself when the war started, so I

23 cannot really give you a concrete answer. But I am aware of the fact that

24 she was dismissed, and she didn't leave through the door. She has to jump

25 out of the window, and she had to flee when she was leaving her job, so it

Page 16324

1 was not her walking out, but jumping out of the building.

2 Q. Okay. Are you telling us that people like Ms. Mehdin - and I

3 apologise again with the pronunciation - and other people, for example,

4 like yourself, were simply terminated, fired, sacked, whatever the word

5 may be, because you were Bosniaks?

6 A. I did not receive a piece of paper about my -- I didn't sign

7 anything. I did not receive any notification about my dismissal. The

8 only thing that I saw was my workbook that I found in the factory after

9 the war, and in that workbook it said that I stopped working on the 4th or

10 on the 5th of April. But I still claim that I never received an

11 enactment, a piece of paper, a document that I would have signed and that

12 would have had anything to do with my work or my job.

13 Q. Earlier you said: Everyone, from janitors to doctors, every

14 Bosniak from a janitor to a doctor, eventually lost their job. Do you

15 remember telling us that?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. And I believe - and correct me if I'm wrong - I believe you are

18 suggesting to us that, at least in part, or a large part of the reason for

19 that, was because you were in fact Muslims, Bosniaks.

20 A. Of course.

21 Q. Now, let's talk about this time frame we're talking about, where

22 Bosniaks are getting sacked and terminated, 1991 to 1992. Thinking back

23 to 1991 and 1992, how was the economy in 1991/1992 compared to, say, 1987,

24 1988? Was it better in 1991, 1992 or worse in 1991, 1992?

25 A. It's very difficult for me to give you a precise answer, because

Page 16325

1 I'm not an economist. I know very little about that. But after the

2 multiparty elections, the situation did not improve in my town. The

3 situation was the same. I did not notice any particular changes that

4 would benefit the citizens. The only changes that happened were the ones

5 that eventually resulted in the war.

6 Q. Well, and the war -- the war that starts with Croatia, would you

7 agree with me, when that war starts, the war with Croatia, it affects the

8 local economy in Bosanski Petrovac?

9 A. I believe that it did have a certain influence, not only on

10 Bosanski Petrovac but also on the entire former Yugoslavia. There were

11 certain changes, first in Slovenia, then in Croatia, and obviously this

12 all led to major changes all over the place.

13 Q. Well, let's focus in on the economy in Bosanski Petrovac. What

14 the war in Croatia did was affected adversely, the economy got worse.

15 Correct?

16 A. I believe that I've already said that I'm not a good economist,

17 that this is not my particular forte. But I've also said that I did not

18 notice any improvements, and I believe that this is what you asked me

19 here, that this is what your previous question was about.

20 Q. I'm not asking for an economist answer. I'm asking for an answer

21 from someone who watches what happens in his community, sees what's

22 happening with people at their jobs. Isn't it true, when the war with

23 Croatia starts, a number of people - Croats, Serbs, and Muslims - all are

24 affected by the war?

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Let me help you, Mr. Cunningham.

Page 16326

1 As the war progressed and as matters got worse, the war with

2 Croatia, as matters got worse -- I remember reading through your statement

3 that you said that initially Bosanski Petrovac was not in any way affected

4 by the war, but then, as things started changing, then things really got

5 worse, even in Bosanski Petrovac. You've stated that you did not notice

6 any improvement in the state of the economy, generally speaking, in your

7 town. As we go along, as we proceed in time, did businesses start to

8 close down? Did the economy, in general, suffer? Were people better off

9 or better -- or worse off as a result of the war? The state of the

10 economy in general, did it -- certainly it did not register as any

11 progress. You have already told us that. But did it register any

12 setback?

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If we focus on 1991 and on 1992, of

14 course there was a regress in that direction, because the exchange of

15 commodities changed. It was not the same as it used to be. And at this

16 time, it was mostly connected with the area of Republika Srpska, and at

17 that time I believe that this was already the case, and a lot of trade was

18 with the Serbian Vojvodina, with which Bosanski Petrovac had traditional

19 economic relations.

20 As far as the economy is concerned, the product that the economy,

21 Bosanski Petrovac, relied on was timber and timber product, but the

22 situation changed at that time. Sipad was no longer the major player on

23 the market. There were now new private entrepreneurs, other persons from

24 the political top which engaged in these activities instead of the

25 state-owned companies or previously incepted enterprises, and they did not

Page 16327

1 use the former channel of distribution, the ones that used to exist from

2 Sipad, Bosanski Petrovac, to other parts of the market.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Cunningham.

4 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Thank you, Your Honour.

5 Q. Would you agree with me or not that a number of people, be they

6 Bosniaks, Serbs, or Croats, were put out of their jobs because of the

7 economy in 1992?

8 A. I couldn't agree with you.

9 Q. Okay. Let me change topics. One of the things you talked about

10 on Thursday, one of the things that concerned you, was the increased

11 presence of the military in the municipality of Bosanski Petrovac. Do you

12 remember talking about that with us last Thursday?

13 A. Yes. That's what I said.

14 Q. I apologise for stepping on the translator's answer.

15 You also told us -- talked about weapons in Bosanski Petrovac, and

16 I'm going to talk to you about those two areas. You talked to us last

17 Thursday or testified last Thursday that the Bosniak community was

18 directed, ordered, to turn in firearms. Do you remember testifying about

19 that?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. How did you hear about the order that came from the government,

22 the local government, to turn in the firearms?

23 A. It was a public order. It was an ultimatum, and it was made

24 public.

25 Q. And when you heard this public order, did you gather up whatever

Page 16328

1 weapon or weapons you have -- and you turned it in. Correct?

2 A. No, not me personally, because I did not possess any firearms.

3 Q. Okay. My mistake. I apologise. Now, earlier you told us that

4 you were becoming very concerned about the situation that was developing

5 in Bosanski Petrovac. I take it you were concerned for your safety?

6 A. My concern was always personal concern for the safety of my family

7 and for my own safety, of course.

8 Q. And that was a concern that many other Bosniaks had as well.

9 Correct?

10 A. Absolutely correct.

11 Q. In your testimony, as well as in your statement, you talked about

12 the 1991 census figures for Bosanski Petrovac, showing a little over

13 15.500 people. Do you remember that testimony?

14 A. Yes, I do.

15 Q. And I believe you told us that a little bit over 20 per cent, I

16 believe you told us 22 per cent of that 15.500 were Bosniaks. Correct?

17 A. 22.1 per cent exactly.

18 Q. Okay. Of that 22.1 per cent out of the population of the

19 municipality that were Bosniaks, not one of those 31 -- over 3.000 people,

20 not one of those 3.000 Bosniaks kept a weapon? Is that what you've told

21 this Court?

22 A. This is not what I meant to say before this Trial Chamber. What I

23 wanted to say is that there were hunting rifles and that there were other

24 types of firearms as well, and this is what I said. So there was a

25 possibility to obtain all sorts of firearms through illegal channels, and

Page 16329

1 these firearms, as a rule, came from the front line. It was registered,

2 and as a rule, it was compromising for those who would purchase it from

3 those who were selling it.

4 Q. And my question is very simple: Are you -- and it's just this:

5 Based on what you saw, what you heard, you're not aware of any Bosniak who

6 didn't comply with the order? Every Bosniak turned in their guns is what

7 you're telling us?

8 A. My answer was not in that direction. I just confirmed what I said

9 here on Thursday in relation to the problem of weapons and disarmament, I

10 mean the way in which the disarmament took place.

11 Q. And I apologise, Mr. Hidic. It's probably the way that I'm asking

12 the question. This will be my last try. Are you aware of any Bosniaks

13 who didn't comply with the order to turn in any sort of firearm?

14 A. I really don't know about that. I really don't.

15 Q. Okay. Fair enough.

16 You told us on Thursday, as well as in your statements, that

17 before 1991, in your municipality of Bosanski Petrovac, there were no

18 military installations, there were no active-duty military, and there were

19 only reserves and TO in the area. Do you remember telling us that?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. And that started, that changed, especially in 1992 that caused you

22 alarm, because you started seeing more soldiers, particularly Serb

23 soldiers, at active-duty reserves at installations that had been

24 established in your municipality. Right?

25 A. I did not say Serb soldiers. I said the army, the former Yugoslav

Page 16330

1 People's Army, coming from the area of Croatia. They came to Bosanski

2 Petrovac too, and I think that I said that Bosanski Petrovac was an

3 important centre in that part of Bosanska Krajina. And I saw these

4 endless columns, motorised columns, of the Yugoslav People's Army going to

5 Jajce, Banja Luka, and of course in the direction of Drvar, and then via

6 Drvar, to Knin. I think that that was my answer in response to that

7 question. The question was put to me by the Prosecutor.

8 Q. And I guess the point I'm trying to make is: In 1992, it would

9 make sense to have troops stationed in Bosanski Petrovac, the

10 municipality, because it was close to the front. Right?

11 A. In 1992, the situation was already quite different. Please. We

12 are talking about 1991, and we are talking about the Yugoslav army in the

13 area of Bosanski Petrovac. They were taken in, and I think that this was

14 actually a garrison that was moved, transferred, from Karlovac, came to

15 Bosanski Petrovac, and they were in Bosanski Petrovac all the way up to

16 Laniste, where the barracks were later. I think that this was an

17 engineering unit or some kind of technical unit of that nature.

18 Q. Okay. But you would agree with me, agree with the general notion

19 that it would make sense from a military standpoint to have your troops

20 close to the front. Correct?

21 A. I don't know what was deployed along the front line, but I'm

22 telling you about what I know. I'm not a military strategist. My

23 perceptions are very modest, and I am telling you only about what I saw,

24 what was a visual thing, and what was accessible to every citizen. Every

25 citizen could see things like this, namely, columns of the former Yugoslav

Page 16331

1 People's Army in the area of Bosanski Petrovac.

2 Q. Okay. Let's talk about the checkpoints, because I think you told

3 us, and correct me if I'm wrong, the checkpoints started being erected

4 about 1991.

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. And you told -- I believe in your statement, you said that the

7 rationale, the basis for this was to prevent the infiltration of enemy

8 troops from Croatia. Do you remember saying anything like that in your

9 statement? And if you need to look, please do so.

10 A. I am going to avail myself of this opportunity.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Cunningham, could you refer him precisely to

12 which of the three statements.

13 MR. CUNNINGHAM: I'm talking about his original statement of --

14 JUDGE AGIUS: 1999.

15 MR. CUNNINGHAM: 10 November 1999. Let me see if I can locate

16 it. If I may interrupt, Your Honour, I see on page 3 of the English

17 version, 1, 2, 3 paragraphs down. And I apologise, Judge. I think that

18 was his --

19 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel please speak into the microphone.


21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've found this. Yes. Yes. I've

22 just found this paragraph here.


24 Q. And you read where you stated in that statement that there was the

25 reason given was to prevent the infiltration of enemy troops from

Page 16332

1 Croatia. Correct?

2 A. Yes. This is what I knew, officially. This is what I was

3 officially aware of. May I remind you that I was still employed at the

4 time. I was still working and people came to the logistics centre to get

5 food and other things. People did know what was going on in the territory

6 of the municipality of Bosanski Petrovac, and they knew why this was

7 happening. If necessary, I can even tell you an anecdote. A young man

8 from Drvar was arrested by mistake --

9 Q. Let me go ahead and interrupt you, because I don't think an

10 anecdote is necessary at this point. And I don't say that to be rude to

11 you, but here's my point, Mr. Hidic: I know you're not an economist, I

12 know you're not a military expert, but you would agree with me, would you

13 not, that it makes sense to set up checkpoints to prevent the enemy from

14 coming in to your homeland?

15 A. Yes. Yes. May I -- this has to do with checkpoints in Croatia.

16 This was not that type of thing. This was only in a certain part of the

17 area, in 1991 -- sorry -- no -- yes, it is 1991. So it's in a certain

18 area that these checkpoints were set up. So it was not that they were set

19 up in a war sense of the word. It wasn't like in 1992, as we were going

20 to Grabez. Then I saw these combat checkpoints.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, Mr. Cunningham.

22 Let me ask you a question, Witness. Reading through that

23 particular paragraph of your first statement, I see that you were

24 meticulous, you were very precise, explaining where these checkpoints were

25 set up, and you say on the roads in Bosanski Petrovac, to Bihac, location

Page 16333

1 Vrtoce; road to Drvar, location Kolunic, close to Kljuc; location Bravsko,

2 road to Bosanska Krupa, location Krnjeusa. Would the set-up of

3 checkpoints at these locations tally with the reason that was put by the

4 authorities, namely, the prevention of infiltration of enemy groups from

5 Croatia? Are these checkpoints, checkpoints that would be good for

6 controlling -- or strategically placed for controlling, if possible,

7 infiltrations from Croatia? Yes. I'm waiting for you, for your answer.

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I can say that at first, when

9 the checkpoints were set up, they did not have that intention. The point

10 was to control the roads. So it was only traffic control, control of

11 normal civilian traffic taking place in that section of the road. So when

12 this checkpoint was first set up, that was its primary task. The vehicles

13 there were primarily trucks and passenger buses, especially the evening

14 bus that came from the area of Sarajevo and then went to Bihac through our

15 area, and also the other way around, from Bihac to Sarajevo. Of course,

16 there were other civilian vehicles that were stopped at that checkpoint

17 too. So this was one of the first checkpoints that was erected in the

18 territory of the municipality of Bosanski Petrovac, and that was its

19 purpose.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: As I see it, you have already explained to us that

21 Petrovac was -- had no border with Croatia, and I fail to understand, for

22 example, how a checkpoint on the road from Petrovac to Kljuc could in any

23 manner be tied up with trying to avert infiltration of enemy from Croatia,

24 because Kljuc is to the east of Petrovac. Is that correct?

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's very clear, Your Honour.

Page 16334

1 Bosanski Petrovac is east of Bihac. But as for the remainder of the

2 Croatian army, near Slunj, I think that's the last town in the territory

3 of Croatia that fell into the hands of the Serb army. So this was towards

4 the end of 1991. Via Kladusa, via Kladusa, these people, refugees from

5 that area, used the only possible way they took to get out. They went

6 through Bosanski Petrovac, in transit, of course. They went to some other

7 destination, and from there, they could be transferred to Croatia.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Anyway, I leave him to you, Mr. Cunningham.

9 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Thank you, Your Honour.

10 Q. Do you know Midho Druzic? Do you know that gentleman from

11 Bosanski Petrovac?

12 A. I do.

13 Q. Now, is it -- I believe you told us on Thursday that it was --

14 these checkpoints had the effect of limiting the ability of non-Serbs to

15 travel within the municipality. Is that correct?

16 A. No, not within the municipality; outside the municipality.

17 Q. Non-Serbs were the only -- were not the only people that these

18 checkpoints limited, because these checkpoints also limited men of

19 military age. Correct?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. And you also told us that, at least early on in this process of

22 the checkpoints, not only non-Serbs were stopped, but even Serb men,

23 certain Serbs, were taken into custody. Correct?

24 A. It's not that they were taken into custody. They were taken off

25 these vehicles and were not allowed to continue their journey, those who

Page 16335

1 did not have the necessary papers.

2 Q. Both Serb and non-Serb. Correct?

3 A. Yes, yes.

4 Q. Ultimately, acts of violence came to your community, and I want to

5 talk to you about those, not in detail, but I just want to make a couple

6 of points with you. For many of the violent acts, you came upon them the

7 following day, because they became common knowledge within your

8 community. Right?

9 A. Of course.

10 Q. And I believe you told us of at least two deaths that were

11 followed by funerals that were attended by both Bosniaks and Serbs.

12 Correct?

13 A. Yes. The first two killings that occurred, that's the way it

14 was. Well, perhaps something happened afterwards too, but there were less

15 Serbs.

16 Q. You have described how, in describing for us your knowledge of

17 some of these acts of violence, you talked about how the police would

18 arrive, do an on-site investigation, and then basically leave. I give you

19 the example of the gentleman who was shot and had to be buried right there

20 in his backyard, as an instance where the police came and did just an

21 on-site investigation.

22 A. On-site investigation. That's what was carried out by the police,

23 or rather, part of the police, from the police station in Bosanski

24 Petrovac.

25 Q. And was there a concern within the Bosniak community that the

Page 16336

1 police were not doing their job, not following up in trying to find out

2 who had committed these violent acts upon the Bosniak community?

3 A. Actually, Bosniaks expected the results of this kind of

4 investigation, but we never found out about any kind of procedure, any

5 kind of investigation that was being carried out about the crimes

6 committed in the territory of Bosanski Petrovac.

7 Q. And that was especially true in 1992. Correct?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Based on your observations, you would agree with me, or based on

10 your knowledge, isn't it true that at times portions of the police, many

11 officers in the police, would be called up to the reserves and go to the

12 front, and go on active duty?

13 A. Well, not everybody. There were reservists who were at the front

14 line, but then most reservists were in town or at the checkpoints or

15 carrying out some duties within the town or the local communes of the

16 municipality of Bosanski Petrovac.

17 Q. But a good many of them actually got called up into actual duty,

18 actual duty at the fronts?

19 A. I think -- well, no. They went to the front line every now and

20 then. They went every now and then, and they were supposed to help out at

21 the front line, if I can put it that way. It's not that they were

22 permanently attached there.

23 Q. But you would agree with me that every day they spend at the front

24 line is one day less to investigate crimes in the municipality?

25 A. I think that there was a special team for investigating crimes,

Page 16337

1 and I don't think that this was the duty of the reserve policemen, or

2 could they do this. There were professional persons who were supposed to

3 do that, before the war and during the war. Such persons carried out

4 these on-site investigations at crime scenes.

5 Q. When talking about the destruction that came to your community,

6 you talked about a home that had been shelled and burned, and when you

7 went there the following day, you smelled a really, really bad odour, a

8 chemical odour. Do you remember that testimony?

9 A. Yes. When I talked about the attack on the Bosniak house of the

10 Redzicis, with rifle grenades, chemical components. I talked about one

11 house only where an attack was carried out, and in the morning, several

12 citizens were there, and also the representatives of the political

13 government. Let me point this out: A member of parliament was there,

14 Dragan Milanovic. He was there. He was there. He himself, in person.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Hidic --

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And of course people asked --

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Try to answer -- I'm trying to help you finish

18 today, because otherwise you will have to come again tomorrow. And

19 Mr. Cunningham is also trying hard to finish with you today. But in order

20 to help us help you, you need to answer the question, the whole question,

21 and nothing but the question. You're not answering the question. You're

22 telling us facts, some of which you had already told us before, and others

23 which you haven't been asked to relate. The question was: Do you

24 remember mentioning this incident? The answer should have been yes or no.

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

Page 16338

1 JUDGE AGIUS: So please try to answer just the question and

2 nothing else beyond that.

3 Mr. Cunningham.

4 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Thank you, Your Honour.

5 Q. And my next question is very simple. Are you suggesting that this

6 was a chemical weapon that was used against the Bosniaks?

7 A. It's not that I'm suggesting anything. It's a fact. There were

8 chemical components in what was used there. I mean, let me just say

9 this: That was the smell that could be felt, and also it could be felt in

10 the respiratory system.

11 Q. I want to talk to you -- have you testified briefly to the point

12 about the work obligation that you talked about? Because you were not in

13 the military, you were obligated, if requested to, if commanded to do so

14 by the government, to do your work obligation. Correct?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And those orders, did they typically come from the Ministry of

17 Defence? Because I remember you testifying that the order you got was

18 unusual. So my question is: Do the orders typically come from the

19 Ministry of Defence?

20 A. Not the ministry. This was the authority that worked in the field

21 of National Defence in the territory of the municipality of Bosanski

22 Petrovac.

23 Q. And the order that you got was unusual. Tell us very, very

24 briefly why your order -- why you felt it was unusual. Did it not come

25 from the authority that worked in the field of National Defence in your

Page 16339

1 municipality?

2 A. Well, the stamp said Titov Drvar. The stamp didn't say Bosanski

3 Petrovac, and that's what struck me. Everything that had to do with this

4 document had to do with Bosanski Petrovac, but the stamp came from Titov

5 Drvar, and that was my interpretation, because this was pretty obvious.

6 Q. And you know from what you saw in your municipality that many of

7 your fellow Bosniaks, when called up to do work obligation, for example,

8 did agricultural work during the summer; correct?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. They also worked making the canals, working at the fish farm that

11 was in that area as well. Correct?

12 A. Unfortunately, Bosanski Petrovac doesn't have a fish farm, and

13 that was not anything that was involved in all of this in Bosanski

14 Petrovac.

15 Q. But the gentlemen who got called up to do their work obligation

16 assisted in the wartime effort by helping out in the local economy.

17 Correct?

18 A. No, of course, because they were not employed, so they didn't do

19 this during working hours. They were mobilised subsequently, after they

20 had been dismissed from work. That is when they were mobilised to do this

21 kind of work.

22 Q. Well, let's go ahead and talk about briefly -- your experience on

23 the work obligation was the one day where you went, by transport, to an

24 area close to the front lines, and that's when you told us that you were

25 confronted by men in military uniforms while you were waiting on the bus.

Page 16340

1 Correct?

2 A. Yes. We were directly at the line. We saw each other directly,

3 and I even knew some of the men who were there at the line then.

4 Q. Okay. And when the men came on the bus and started acting in a

5 threatening and intimidating manner, it was clear to you they were upset

6 with the Bosniak community because, in their minds, the Bosniaks were not

7 assisting in the defence of the municipality of Bosanski Petrovac?

8 A. No. This is a group that showed up and that happily received the

9 news that there were Bosniaks at the front line and that they were on the

10 bus. So these were people who were quite different, who were not directly

11 linked to the line where we were then, I mean where we were.

12 Q. I'm confused, because you told us that there were a group of men

13 who got on the bus, acting threatening and in an intimidating manner.

14 That's not the same group of people you're talking about, is it?

15 A. Absolutely, these are different groups. This is a group that came

16 in motor vehicles.

17 Q. Okay. And those people who came in motor vehicles were upset with

18 the fact that you were a work crew, not a combat unit, ready to fight for

19 Bosanski Petrovac. That's one of the reasons they were upset with you.

20 Correct?

21 A. They did not need any excuse. They did not look for any excuses.

22 They just saw Muslims on the bus and that was good enough excuse for them

23 to get on the bus and start taunting us.

24 Q. One of the ways they taunted you, one of the ways they intimidated

25 you, was statements to the effect that the Bosniak community is not doing

Page 16341

1 their fair share for the defence of the municipality?

2 A. Again, you are trying to get a different answer from me, but what

3 I'm saying is that they didn't care whether we were putting up defence or

4 not. The only thing that they cared about was that we were Muslims.

5 Q. I'm going to -- I want to talk to you about some documents now,

6 and believe me, I want to have you out of here by 4.00, so try to listen

7 to my question so we can move through this.

8 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Your Honour, with the usher's permission -- with

9 your permission and the usher's assistance, can I show him P1813.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Cunningham --

11 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters kindly ask Your Honour to speak

12 into the microphone. Thank you.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: I would like you, in the future, you and Ms. Baruch,

14 if possible, before proceeding with cross-examination, to give a list of

15 the documents that you intend to make use of. This has been the practice

16 that has been followed in the past.

17 MR. CUNNINGHAM: And I apologise to the Court about that.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: It's okay. I realise that you were not informed of

19 it. So we'll try to stick to it for the future.

20 MR. CUNNINGHAM: That's fair, Your Honour. What I'll try to do

21 is --

22 JUDGE AGIUS: In the meantime, if you can hand to the usher the

23 numbers of the documents you intend to bring forward. He will have them

24 ready.

25 MR. CUNNINGHAM: I apologise for my --

Page 16342

1 JUDGE AGIUS: It's okay, Mr. Cunningham. No need for that.

2 Please go ahead.


4 Q. I believe you have Exhibit P -- excuse me, P1813 in front of you,

5 and I believe my notes reflect that this is the decision of the Petrovac

6 Municipal Assembly to break away from the Bihac Assembly. And I believe

7 you testified last Thursday that your municipality had always gravitated

8 towards Bihac. Do you remember talking about that?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And in the reasons given in the documents for the break away from

11 Bihac, you testified that some of the -- the reasons given were political,

12 and if I've mischaracterised your answer, please stop me, but I believe

13 you said that some of them were true and some of them were not true.

14 Do you remember that?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Tell me, very quickly, what was true, and then tell us what was

17 not true. What was true, first of all?

18 A. It is very difficult for me to answer this question because this

19 decision does not contain any of that; and secondly, a lot of reasons were

20 given for which the Municipal Assembly Bosanski Petrovac had to decide to

21 leave the Bihac region. However, one of the reasons given was an economic

22 reason. This is totally unjustified, because the economic situation, not

23 only in Petrovac but also in some other municipalities in the Bihac

24 region, was very similar to the one in Petrovac. If the reason -- one of

25 the reasons given was communications and infrastructure, then again this

Page 16343

1 is not justified, because immediately before the war the waterline was

2 completed, and in 1991, the road was being built between Bosanski Petrovac

3 and Krupa; and this was the only road at that time that was not covered

4 with asphalt. The complete electrical infrastructure was good.

5 So I'm just telling you things that I can remember and that I can

6 cite off the top of my head as reasons given by the municipality to leave

7 the association of municipalities of Bihac. So I believe that this

8 decision was more a political or even ethnic-related decision. It was not

9 so much an economic or a similar decision.

10 Q. Okay. I want to talk to you now about Exhibit P1805, that is, the

11 Crisis Staff notes, dated 21 May 1992, covering the meeting held on 19 May

12 1992. And I really do want to have you out of here by 4.00. Look at

13 that --

14 A. I would be very glad if we could finish today, and I'll do my best

15 to speed things along on my side.

16 Q. Just try your best just to answer the question that's posed to

17 you, and I'm not saying this to be rude, but to remain focused on just

18 that question.

19 This is one of the documents that the Prosecutor talked about

20 where there were discussions at the Crisis Staff about cattle. Do you

21 remember the discussions about cattle?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. And if you know the answer to this, agree; if you don't, that's

24 fine too. Did you know that the cattle that are being discussed,

25 specifically in this Crisis Staff report, were special dairy cattle that

Page 16344

1 needed special attention, otherwise they ran the risk of dying very, very

2 quickly? If you know that, fine; if not, that's fine too.

3 A. I believe that these cows originated from Kupres, from a farm, a

4 cattle-breeding farm in the territory of Kupres. They arrived in Bosanski

5 Petrovac, so I believe that the majority of that livestock came from that

6 area. Obviously, there were cows from other regions as well.

7 Q. Let me change the topic and give you a new document that you

8 talked about, which is Exhibit P1807, 1807 is the Crisis Staff notes from

9 May the 24th, and you've talked to us about this. And if I could, to help

10 you try to get out of here in time, take you to the fourth page, numbers 2

11 and number 3. With respect to number 2, that -- there's some sort of

12 decision, conclusion, decision made by the Crisis Staff that the ethnic

13 Muslims can stay at work in accordance with the needs of the company.

14 Correct?

15 A. Yes, that is correct, of course.

16 Q. And number 3 talks about the establishment of a military court to

17 deal with those stealing, looting, things like that. Correct?

18 A. I believe that a court was indeed set up.

19 Q. So you --

20 A. So this is correct.

21 Q. And that would be some sort of move on behalf of the civilian

22 authorities to deal with the looting, the lawlessness that was happening

23 in the area. Correct?

24 A. I believe that this was just an attempt.

25 Q. While we're talking about war booty, and I'm going to use the

Page 16345

1 phrase that you used, I believe you testified last week - and I don't have

2 the document in front of me - that there was a request by the Bosanski

3 Petrovac Crisis Staff for assistance in dealing with the problem of

4 stealing and looting in the area. Do you remember talking about that,

5 generally speaking, last Thursday?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And there was an effort made to confiscate stolen property, and

8 you told us that it had been stacked up or piled up in front of the police

9 station. Correct?

10 A. Yes. What the police managed to confiscate from various

11 individuals.

12 Q. Okay. But there were -- I think you told us there were

13 difficulties in getting it back to the rightful owner, although it had

14 been confiscated, there were difficulties in returning it.

15 A. No, this is not what I said. That property was never returned to

16 its rightful owners, and this is what the problem was all about.

17 Q. Okay. If I could show, with the usher's assistance, Exhibit

18 P1809. And in this, and if it will assist you, on page 3, it talks about

19 the use of the public security station Petrovac, used for detaining

20 perpetrators of criminal acts. And one of the things that you underlined

21 there was that prisoners in custody could be used doing work for a public

22 interest related to defensive preparations. Right?

23 A. Can you please tell me what page this is on? I can't find it.

24 Q. Go to page 3, towards the very bottom, number 3.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: You are referring to the English version when --

Page 16346

1 MR. CUNNINGHAM: I apologise.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: It's page 2, paragraph numbered 3, the third

3 paragraph from the bottom. Are you referring to [B/C/S spoken] -- can you

4 read it?

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Cunningham.


8 Q. And my question to you was -- is now: Having located that

9 notation, prisoners could be used for doing work for a public interest

10 related to defence preparations. And is that one of the things that

11 happened in Bosanski Petrovac, that they did in fact go to help with

12 defensive preparations?

13 A. This did not happen to the prisoners in Bosanski Petrovac. The

14 detainees did not participate in the kind of works mentioned herein.

15 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Judge, in an effort to speed this along, can I

16 have a minute just to look through some notes?



19 Q. I'd like to talk to you now about Prosecutor's Exhibit P1869,

20 which are the Crisis Staff notes of June 3rd, 1992, covering the meeting

21 of the Crisis Staff in Bosanski Petrovac of June 2nd, 1992. And on the

22 first page of this document, under the notation that says "agenda," there

23 are discussions -- it's number 1, and on the English version it starts on

24 page 1 and continues to page 2, talking about how that non-Serbs be

25 allowed to leave the territory, under the condition that Serbs -- it talks

Page 16347

1 about an exchange of family for family.

2 Do you see that, sir?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Okay. And what was -- and correct me if I'm wrong. I may be

5 wrong on my dates, but there what had happened was there was an effort to

6 exchange Bosniak property in Serb territories, such as Bosanski Petrovac,

7 with Serb territory in other areas. Correct?

8 A. Yes, but the area was defined in those talks, and it was defined

9 only to Bihac, and it was only Bihac that was the subject of

10 intra-municipal talks between Bihac and Bosanski Petrovac, that is, among

11 the top officials and top political leaders.

12 Q. And in actuality, some, but certainly not all of those exchanges,

13 took place because Bosniak families who made their way to Bihac did

14 acquire what had formerly been Serb property?

15 A. Yes. Very few Muslims from Bosanski Petrovac indeed left earlier,

16 before this road was closed, and they went to Bihac. Gradually they moved

17 in some of the houses. I don't know whether this was a part of the

18 aforementioned agreement or something else, because these people were not

19 present when contracts were being signed up in Bosanski Petrovac

20 municipality. They had left long before that.

21 Q. Okay. If I could, with the Court's permission and the usher's

22 assistance, talk with you about Exhibit 245A, which is, for the record,

23 the minutes of the Crisis Staff meeting of 14 June 1992.

24 In this meeting, the Crisis Staff discuss the question of the

25 Muslim community, and I'm talking -- I don't know if my notes -- my copy

Page 16348

1 shows -- I'm referring to the underlined portions that you underlined.

2 A. I don't have a copy with anything underlined in the minutes that

3 were -- that had now been given to me.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]

5 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Sorry. I apologise to you. This is the document

7 that was exhibited this morning by Ms. Korner, and not the one which was

8 in the binder before.

9 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, this --

10 JUDGE AGIUS: 245.1.

11 MS. KORNER: It is. I know there's a lot of confusion. This was

12 the one given to us by AID and the other ones are the ones provided by

13 Mr. Hidic.

14 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Just for the sake of the fact that we all have

15 this document in front of us, I'd like to ask him about this.

16 Q. Is it true, sir, that in here, under item number 1, that the

17 Crisis Staff talks about the Muslims who -- the Bosniaks who have pledged

18 loyalty be included in the defensive preparations. Correct?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. I want you to go to the page -- I believe it -- it might be your

21 next page, but it's the portion of the document that deals with the

22 conclusion. And in the conclusion, as we read it, that references the

23 Crisis Staff in Krajina. Correct?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. And I apologise for stepping on your answer. But it talks about

Page 16349

1 requesting a session with the Crisis Staff in Krajina. Here's my

2 question: As you were looking through the documents that were available

3 to you in the municipality upon your return, did you try to gather every

4 document that referenced the Crisis Staff in Banja Luka?

5 A. No, of course not.

6 Q. And why is that?

7 A. I really don't know. At this moment, I can't answer this

8 question. But in any case, I did not come across any such documents that

9 would be directly connected with the Crisis Staff of Bosanski Petrovac or

10 the region of Banja Luka. I really did not come across the documents of

11 that sort. I may have come across some letters or documents referring to

12 some other documents of that kind, because even here it says the Crisis

13 Staff, Petrovac, is going to ask the Crisis Staff of the autonomous

14 province of Krajina. So this is what I've been talking about, the

15 addressee is related to the Crisis Staff.

16 Q. But you didn't find any documents that would show, for example, in

17 this case, that they first contacted the Crisis Staff in Krajina and then

18 that the Crisis Staff in Krajina did anything about it? You didn't find

19 any documents like that, did you?

20 A. No.

21 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Your Honour, may I have just a moment to talk to

22 Ms. Baruch, because I think I'm at an end.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Switch off the microphone, please.

24 [Defence counsel confer]

25 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Judge, I have no more questions of this witness.

Page 16350

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Cunningham.

2 [Microphone not activated] Thank you for the efficient way in

3 which you conducted cross-examination.

4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, may I just ask one question in

5 re-examination.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, re-examination.

7 MS. KORNER: I see Your Honour is packing up. Only one question.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: I was just clearing up papers from right in front of

9 me because they were piling up

10 Re-examined by Ms. Korner:

11 Q. Mr. Hidic, you were asked about the founding rally, do you

12 remember, of the SDS in Bosanski Petrovac, by Mr. Cunningham?

13 A. Yes, but I was not given the opportunity to give my complete

14 answer to that question.

15 Q. Well, I want to ask you: One thing you said, because it was

16 suggested to you that what they were doing, what they were saying, was

17 what they could do to help their constituents, and your reply, partly, was

18 to this effect: That wasn't the case. It had very little to do with

19 crucial issues. And you highlighted those issues. But they used some

20 words that were absolutely terrifying.

21 What words did they use that were absolutely terrifying?

22 JUDGE AGIUS: And also, while you are putting this question,

23 because this was a question that I was going to ask: He also mentions

24 guests participating in these rallies. He uses the word "guests." I

25 don't know whether that was a matter of interpretation or whether he

Page 16351

1 really used the word "guests." If perhaps he could explain. We could go

2 back to the text.

3 MS. KORNER: I think perhaps if you can --

4 Q. When you talk about guests, Mr. Hidic, what are you referring to?

5 A. Of course, I meant the presence of those people who were not

6 locals, who were not from Bosanski Petrovac municipality, but rather, came

7 from some other areas of the former Yugoslavia who were invited to attend

8 that as guests.

9 Q. Well, I think in -- when I was asking you questions on Thursday,

10 you mentioned people like Biljana Plavsic.

11 A. Now, Biljana Plavsic was present after the exhumation from

12 Rizovacka Jama. She attended a rally of people in Knosa [phoen] that was

13 staged on that occasion.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: The phrase used, Ms. Korner, was guests who

15 participated in the rally.

16 MS. KORNER: Yes. I'm going to ask.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: -- Said some words that were absolutely terrifying.

18 MS. KORNER: Right.

19 Q. First of all, can you remember who any of those guests were? If

20 you can't, say so.

21 A. Oh, I remember, absolutely. The first honourary guest at that

22 rally, Dr. Raskovic; then Bogdan Kecman, from the area of Kosovo, and he

23 came with the Kosovski Bozuri; then also the travelling suite was there,

24 that's what I called them, it was the group from Stara Pazova, that

25 travelled all over the place and they attended practically all the

Page 16352

1 important rallies that had to do with the establishment of the SDS in

2 Bosanska Krajina. Then from Knin there was Babic. Well, right this

3 moment, this is what I can remember. Perhaps if I had more time, I could

4 remember far more persons. So there were guests from all parts of the

5 former Yugoslavia. Vojvodina in particular, I would like to point out,

6 namely, Stara Pazova, and then Belgrade, Kosovo, and Kninska Krajina, and

7 of course Knin itself. Also from the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the

8 area of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

9 Q. [Previous translation continues]... Guess. What was said that

10 terrified you?

11 A. The speeches of some of the speakers at that rally who talked

12 about the jeopardy of the Serbian people, that they were jeopardised by

13 the Ustashas from Croatia and the Turks, the Muslims, and the Muslims were

14 called to go back to their old faith, the faith of their forefathers.

15 Otherwise, they would suffer consequences, that is to say, they would be

16 impaled. That was what Mr. Bogdan Kecman said. Raskovic, who spoke the

17 longest at this meeting, he spoke about the conflict that was in the

18 offing between the Croats, the Ustashas, as he said, and the Serb people,

19 and he said that the spectre of the Ustashas was looming over the Serb

20 people again. I think that I managed to convey some of the words that

21 were uttered at that rally.

22 Although I came somewhat late, I wasn't there from the very

23 beginning, I mean when this discussion took place with the representatives

24 of the Serb people, even they were bitter about these impudent things that

25 were said in front of the town church, where the stalls were set up, I

Page 16353

1 mean that such words could be heard there. Yes, I just remembered now. A

2 peoples' hero from the Second World War, Djuran Kovacevic was from

3 Petrovac, he also gave himself the right to speak. And then a former

4 soldier spoke, a former JNA man, Marjanovic, Stanko Marjanovic. He was

5 one of the founders of the SDS in the municipality of Bosanski Petrovac.

6 And so on and so forth, all the way up to Rajko Novakovic, nicknamed Mujo,

7 who was president of the SDS board eventually, and after the elections,

8 the president of the Municipal Assembly of Bosanski Petrovac.

9 Q. Now, just two final things, and I think you may have told us

10 before, but who was Mr. Raskovic?

11 A. Mr. Raskovic was the founder and president -- I mean, I don't know

12 which office he held exactly, but he was in very high places in that

13 period of time, in Bosanska Krajina and in Krajina in Croatia, among the

14 Serb people there. I think that at that rally, he was accorded very high

15 honours, practically like a visiting head of state. There was also a

16 horse-drawn carriage there for him. I also omitted to mention that

17 clergymen were also present at this rally. They spoke too. But I think

18 that their speech was more moderate, more tolerant, and it was more

19 understandable, when compared to the speeches made by the persons that I

20 referred to just now.

21 Q. And finally, Mr. Kecman, who you mentioned on a couple of

22 occasions, do you know what position he held in 1990?

23 A. What I know about this man is that originally he hailed from the

24 municipality of Bosanski Petrovac, Drinic, to be more specific, since the

25 Second World War, he had been living in Kosovo. I was told that he was

Page 16354

1 the president of this association called Kosovski Bozuri. They had some

2 sort of an important role to play in that area when they dealt with the

3 national issue.

4 Q. Yes. Thank you very much, Mr. Hidic. That's all I ask you.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Judge Janu, who comes from the Czech Republic, would

6 like to put -- is going to put a question to you.

7 Questioned by the Court:

8 JUDGE JANU: Mr. Hidic, I have only one question for you. When

9 you were dealing with the Prosecution Exhibit P1840 -- if the witness can

10 have this exhibit - it was the order of public security station for

11 isolation of the people from 1st July 1992. And when you were dealing

12 with this document, you said you know the majority of the people on this

13 list. Can you assist the Chamber, or clarify for us, if you know: If you

14 look at this list, can you tell us, was this list done together, randomly,

15 or was there any intent in other way, knowing those people, had those

16 people some special importance or was it just random list?

17 A. I'll try to be as brief as possible and to give a precise answer

18 to this question. The first person on this list, number 1, Ekrem Didovic,

19 is the first person to be arrested in the territory of the municipality of

20 Bosanski Petrovac. He had worked in Germany for many years, and then,

21 when he returned, he set up a company. So he worked as a businessman in

22 Bosanski Petrovac.

23 The other person is Zijad Ramic, Zika, again a successful

24 businessman from before the war, a private entrepreneur, of course, in

25 Bosanski Petrovac.

Page 16355

1 Ibrahim Hrkic, he's from Bjelaj. He doesn't belong to this

2 category of persons.

3 4, Husein Bajric is a man who was taken advantage of by the

4 police. He was released. Nobody knows why, how come he was released from

5 the camp at Kozila. After the war he was seen in the territory of Bihac,

6 or rather the region of Bihac.

7 Kartal Fadil, Kudja. He is also one of the private businessmen

8 there. He had his own car repair shop and so on.

9 Muhamed [as interpreted] Hidic is a relative of mine. He has a

10 university degree. He worked at SIP, the SIP company. He was a reserve

11 officer of the JNA, that is to say, the legal, legitimate Yugoslav army.

12 And in those other papers, it can be seen that he refused orders to

13 respond to call-up, simply because this was no longer the army that he had

14 belonged to.

15 Midhat Druzic is also a person from Petrovac I know very well. He

16 was a worker at Autotransport. He's a driver by profession. And he

17 happened to be on this list because a year or two before that he was

18 involved in the building and repair of the mosque in Donji Biscani, which

19 was regrettably destroyed in 1992. So I don't want to take up too much

20 time. And so on and so forth. I think that the first 20 persons from

21 this list happened to be entered in Bosanski Petrovac, at the prison

22 there. The prison became too small, so then some kind of a bigger prison

23 was made, an isolation centre, and of course people were brought into

24 custody every day, interrogated, detained, and so on.

25 I don't know whether I managed to answer the question that you put

Page 16356

1 to me.

2 JUDGE JANU: Thank you.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: I do not have questions myself, which means that

4 essentially your testimony comes to an end here. You will soon leave this

5 courtroom, escorted by the usher, and you will be given all the attention

6 you require to enable you to return to your country. Only two things left

7 for me to say. One is to thank you, on behalf of the Tribunal, and my two

8 colleagues, Judge Janu from the Czech Republic and Judge Taya from Japan,

9 who is absent today due to personal problems. Thank you for having

10 accepted to come over and give evidence in this trial.

11 Last thing is to wish you a safe journey back home. You can now

12 leave the courtroom.

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would like to thank you as well.

14 I am particularly pleased to have had this opportunity to come here and to

15 express what has been within me for years. I feel relieved in a way now.

16 Thank you.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Hidic.

18 Tomorrow, Mr. Kaiser.

19 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, that's right. As I say, if possible,

20 Ms. Richterova is going to be taking the witness. We'd like to be able to

21 finish him tomorrow.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: What I can promise you is --

23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Presiding Judge, please.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: -- Hoping that I will feel a little bit better

25 tomorrow, because I think I'm running a temperature at the moment, we'll

Page 16357

1 try -- we'll start at 9.00, and if we see at any time that there is a

2 likelihood that we might need a few more minutes, just give me the signal,

3 because you are in a better position to gauge that, give me the signal and

4 I'll try and see what we could do. I don't think it would be a major

5 problem if we need to sit for an extra half an hour or so.

6 MS. KORNER: As I say, Your Honour, exactly. If it looks like

7 it's only a few minutes --

8 JUDGE AGIUS: In any case, I would need to know, because I would

9 need to discuss it with the interpreters and the technicians, first and

10 foremost.

11 MS. KORNER: Absolutely, but other than that it's the normal 9.00

12 to 1.45.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: No. To 12.30.

14 MS. KORNER: Oh, I see. 9.00 to 12.30, yes.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: 12.30 and then 2.00 to 4.00.

16 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I don't think -- Mr. Cunningham told me

17 that he didn't intend to be very long, and like Your Honour, I'm most

18 impressed by the efficiency of his cross-examination. So I'm taking it

19 that it will be -- he will be finished tomorrow.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thanks

21 [The witness withdrew]

22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at

23 3.45 p.m., to be reconvened on Tuesday,

24 the 27th day of May 2003, at 9.00 a.m.