Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 18271

1 Thursday, 26 June 2003

2 [Open session]

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

4 [The accused entered court]

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Registrar. Good morning to you. Could

6 you call the case, please.

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

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

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.

10 Mr. Brdjanin, good morning to you.

11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Can you follow the proceedings in a language that

13 you can understand?

14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I can, yes.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Take a seat, please.

16 Appearances for the Prosecution.

17 MS. KORNER: Joanna Korner, assisted by Denise Gustin, case

18 manager. Good morning, Your Honours.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, and good morning to you both.

20 Appearances for Radoslav Brdjanin.

21 MR. ACKERMAN: Good morning, Your Honours. I'm John Ackerman with

22 David Cunningham and Aleksandar Vujic.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Ackerman, and good morning to you

24 and your team.

25 Anything before we bring in the witness? All right.

Page 18272

1 Usher, please bring in the witness.

2 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I think Mr. Ackerman and I would like to

3 have a chat, if that's the word, at the end of the session, about the

4 future.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: At the end of this session? At the end when the

6 witness is finished. I think it's better that we finish him off.


8 MS. KORNER: Don't forget, it's his birthday.


10 [The witness entered court]

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, sir.

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: We are proceeding with your testimony, and hopefully

14 we'll finish today, if you keep your answers to a minimum. And before you

15 do so, please could you repeat your solemn declaration.


17 [Witness answered through interpreter]

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

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

20 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Please take a chair.

21 Ms. Korner.

22 Examined by Ms. Korner: [Continued]

23 Q. Good morning, Mr. Sadikovic, and happy birthday.

24 A. Good morning. Thank you. Thank you.

25 Q. Mr. Sadikovic, I just have a few more questions left. When we

Page 18273

1 broke yesterday, you were explaining to the Court how you had been to

2 Vecici to try and prevail on the resisters in Vecici to leave. Were you

3 successful?

4 A. Unfortunately, and it still haunts me, I set off between

5 Donji Vrbanjci and Vecici. I came across a group of people and their

6 discussion ensued, and one of those men made me angry and I turned back.

7 However, to this day, I am sorry that I did not truly try. Perhaps I

8 wouldn't have managed to persuade their command, but I would have found

9 two or three prominent villagers and talked with them. However, my

10 conscience is clear. But somehow I feel that I could have prevailed on

11 those people to leave.

12 Q. But did you and others in your group leave together with wives and

13 children -- leave Kotor Varos in the convoy at the end of October?

14 A. Yes, we did. Together with my combatants, their families, my

15 family, I left Kotor Varos.

16 Q. Before you could leave, did you have to do anything in respect of

17 the property which you and the other members of the convoy owned?

18 A. Let me tell you: There was a form which the citizens signed

19 before departing from Kotor Varos. I cannot remember its text exactly,

20 but roughly that they were leaving their property to Republika Srpska,

21 something to that effect. I can't remember the text on the form verbatim.

22 Q. All right. I think we may have a form, which I can show you. And

23 while I'm looking, I'd like to ask you about one final document, please.

24 I want you to have a look at a document which is effectively a criminal

25 report dated the 27th of October, 1993. I don't know whether, Your

Page 18274

1 Honour -- it's been -- yes, it's been handed up, I gather. Could the

2 witness be shown a copy.

3 Now, I know you looked at this the day before yesterday. Before

4 being shown a copy, had you ever seen this document before?

5 A. No, Your Honours, I haven't.

6 Q. It's a criminal report filed against a number of people, and I

7 think if we go to number 27, you'll see your name there.

8 A. Yes, I've found it.

9 Q. You are -- you and the others -- and I'll come back to the others

10 in a moment. Go to, after number 29 on the list, you'll see that the

11 criminal report was filed, because there are reasonable grounds to suspect

12 that during the armed clashes in Kotor Varos municipality between the 24th

13 of July and the 2nd of November, as members of Muslim military formations,

14 they took the lives of civilians.

15 Now, obviously, what you've told us, you left at the end of

16 October. As far as you are aware, did you ever take the lives of

17 civilians in any of the time that you were in Ravne, operating in Ravne?

18 A. No, Your Honours. I claim under full responsibility that I did

19 not.

20 Q. The other people who are named, do you know all of them or some of

21 them, between 1 and 26?

22 A. I know some of those individuals.

23 Q. Were any of them in your group?

24 A. Directly in my vicinity, no, they were not. But all of them --

25 no, I don't know. Somebody perhaps in Vecici, or perhaps some other

Page 18275

1 place, but none of those men were in my vicinity, nor were members of the

2 staff or ...

3 Q. Right. Were you ever made aware that you were charged, at the

4 time that you had been charged with this offence?

5 A. Yes. It was through the media. Well, I wasn't listening to that,

6 but there were some relations, some neighbours, who said they had heard on

7 the radio that I was a war criminal, which absolutely makes no sense, and

8 I'm quite ready to account before any court, whenever there is an

9 independent court which observes international law, I'm quite ready to

10 account for everything I've done, and I stand by everything I did.

11 Q. All right. Now, I want you to look, in connection with documents

12 you had to sign to leave, at Exhibit 22 -- P2243.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: In the meantime, this document that -- are you going

14 to tender it?

15 MS. KORNER: I am, Your Honour. Thank you very much. P2329. I

16 think it's one of those which has been copied both sides, so I'll hand

17 mine up so that Your Honours can see what it is.

18 Q. This is not you. This is somebody else. But it's a document that

19 says they wish to move away and leave behind their land in Kotor and

20 destroyed house, declare I will not join any armed formations, will not

21 fight against the army in the interests of the Serbian Republic. The

22 statement is done in three identical copies, of which one will be sent to

23 the Crisis Staff, one to the population resettlement agency, and one to

24 the Autonomous Region of Krajina.

25 Was it a document like that that you had to sign? Can you

Page 18276












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Page 18277

1 remember?

2 A. Yes. I think it's the same document.

3 Q. Yes. Thank you very much indeed, Mr. Sadikovic. That's all I

4 ask?

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner.

6 Mr. Sadikovic --

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: -- as I explained to you yesterday, you're now going

9 to be cross-examined by Mr. Ackerman, who is the lead counsel for

10 Mr. Brdjanin.

11 Mr. Ackerman, I leave him to you.

12 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Your Honour.

13 Cross-examined by Mr. Ackerman:

14 Q. Good morning, Mr. Sadikovic.

15 A. Good morning, sir.

16 Q. I also want to wish you a happy birthday, and you must be thrilled

17 at being able to spend your birthday here with us. Correct?

18 A. Thank you. Well, that's how things turned out.

19 Q. All right. I want to start my questioning with you, and let me

20 first just sort of preliminarily suggest this to you. I am planning on

21 completing my cross-examination of you today so that you can be finished

22 and go home, but that will depend upon whether you listen to my questions

23 and answer just the question I ask you. If you decide to answer more than

24 the question, then it's likely that we will not get finished today. So

25 please try to do that. Please just listen to the question and answer the

Page 18278

1 question I'm asking you. Do you think you can do that?

2 A. Yes, of course.

3 Q. And please understand that I do want to be fair with you, and if

4 there is something that you feel you absolutely have to explain to the

5 Judges, then I'll certainly give you the opportunity to do that. So just

6 let me know if you want to explain something, and there will be no problem

7 with that. Because I do want to be fair with you. Okay?

8 A. Okay. By all means, I'll do what I can.

9 Q. Thank you. Thank you very much. I appreciate that.

10 I want to begin with a document that I received yesterday morning,

11 which is -- it's called proofing notes, and it's a record made by, I

12 think, an investigator from the Office of the Prosecutor as a result of

13 conversations that were had with you --

14 MS. KORNER: I think I said -- just correct it. It was done by a

15 young intern lawyer who was sitting in, not an investigator.

16 MR. ACKERMAN: All right.

17 Q. It was made by someone who was present during what they call a

18 proofing session, where a discussion was had with you on 24 June. That

19 would have been Tuesday, in preparation for your testimony here. The note

20 that I was handed says this. It says: "Mr. Sadikovic states that he has

21 a clear memory of the events of 11 years ago." Is that correct? Did you

22 say that at that time?

23 A. Yes, Your Honours, I did say that, and I do, by and large,

24 remember all the events.

25 Q. All right. And the second thing I want to ask you about from

Page 18279

1 those proofing notes is this: The notes say that you explained that the

2 changes required to the three statements that you've given to various

3 investigators since 1997 were a consequence of problems in

4 translation/interpretation and were not errors of fact on your behalf. Is

5 it true that you said that?

6 A. Yes, Your Honours, it is. I did say that.

7 Q. All right. Thank you very much. So at least with regard to these

8 two things that I just brought to your attention, they were translated

9 properly and reported properly to us and in fact you said them?

10 A. That's right.

11 Q. Now, I would like you to have in front of you each of the three

12 statements that you have given, and I want you to have both the B/C/S

13 version and the English version of each of those statements. And so in

14 just a moment, those will be handed to you and then I'll have questions of

15 you about them.

16 Now, you should have in front of you three statements, both in the

17 English and B/C/S. The first one, which I'll call statement number 1, is

18 dated 21/30 October and 27 May 1997. Do you have that statement?

19 A. I do.

20 Q. And then you should also have a second one, which I call statement

21 number 2, dated 12 October of the year 2000. Do you have that one?

22 A. The 21st. Yes.

23 Q. Let me look a minute. What I have is 12 October 2000, at least on

24 the front of the statement, that's what it says in English. Is that the

25 same statement that you have?

Page 18280

1 A. Yes. It's all right. It's all right, Your Honour.

2 Q. All right. And then the third statement, which I call statement

3 number 3, is dated 10 March 2001. Do you also have that one?

4 A. No. This third one is in English. It's fine. I've got the third

5 one too.

6 Q. All right. Now, you have them in both languages, both English and

7 B/C/S?

8 A. Yes. Yes, that's right, Your Honours.

9 Q. Now, if you'll recall, on those -- on each of those three

10 occasions when you gave statements to the investigators from the ICTY,

11 you, of course, answered the questions in your own language; correct?

12 A. Correct, Your Honours.

13 Q. And your answers were then translated and recorded in some way,

14 and finally a statement was produced in English; correct?

15 A. Correct, Your Honours.

16 Q. And when that statement was completed, it was then read back to

17 you in your own language; correct?

18 A. Correct, Your Honours.

19 Q. And then you were asked to sign it?

20 A. That's right.

21 Q. Now, after you had made this first statement, then the last date

22 on it being 27 May 1997, what I call statement number 1, how did it happen

23 that you made the second statement, that you were interviewed a second

24 time, on 12 October of 2000? How did that come about?

25 A. Your Honours, after I read the previous statement that I had

Page 18281

1 given, I saw that it did not agree. It does not change the substance of

2 events or something. For instance, Bakir Dizdar, does it matter that I

3 saw him on that particular day, or two or three days later? I think it

4 was an interpretation error, but it does not really change the substance.

5 So everything remains the same, and the only question is whether I saw him

6 that day or two days later.

7 Q. We just talked about trying to listen to my question and answer my

8 question. My only question is this: How did it happen that you gave a

9 second statement? Did you ask the Prosecutors to come talk to you again

10 or did they contact you and say they wanted to talk to you again?

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Ackerman, just to make your question a little

12 bit more clear, or clearer: What you're being asked is this,

13 Mr. Sadikovic: You made a first statement, which was taken on three

14 separate occasions, on the 21st of October, 1996; on the 30th of October,

15 1996; on the 27th of May of 1997. That's your first statement. What

16 Mr. Ackerman is asking you is how come that a year later, in October of

17 the year -- not a year later; three years later, in October of the year

18 2000, you make another statement to the Prosecution? Did you contact the

19 Prosecution and tell them that you wanted to make another statement? Were

20 you contacted by the Prosecution, or by someone else and asked for an

21 interview again? What happened? Because usually if you make a second

22 statement three years later, there must be a reason for it. This is what

23 Mr. Ackerman is after. Did I make your question sound clearer, at least

24 in layman's terms, Mr. Ackerman?

25 MR. ACKERMAN: Better than I was doing, Your Honour. Thank you.

Page 18282












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Page 18283

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's all right, Your Honours. I

2 understand. The second took place at the invitation, in Sarajevo, that

3 is, The Hague Tribunal has its office there, and I received an invitation

4 to come for an interview. And as I was reading it, that is, they gave me

5 my statement to read it, and as I was reading it, I noticed those - what

6 shall I call them - errors, perhaps, if they are errors.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Ackerman.


9 Q. So you were told by somebody from the Office of the Prosecutor

10 that they wanted to talk to you again. Did they tell you why they wanted

11 to talk to you again?

12 A. No. They wanted me to clarify a number of points from my previous

13 statement, the statement that I had given. They needed clarification, or

14 they needed me to expand on some of the points.

15 Q. Did you get the impression that they were not totally satisfied

16 with what you had said the first time?

17 A. No. That was not the impression I had.

18 Q. Now, let me ask you the same kind of question about the third

19 statement. You then gave a third statement. Was that -- did you request

20 to make that statement or did the Prosecutor's office contact you and tell

21 you they wanted to talk to you some more?

22 A. The same time as the previous time.

23 Q. The same situation. You were contacted and asked to give a third

24 statement by the Office of the Prosecutor?

25 A. Allow me to clarify this. Those were not three different

Page 18284

1 statements. It's the same wording, the same text. They only asked me

2 about certain things, a number of very specific things, from the previous

3 text, and I provided clarifications.

4 Q. Well, in terms of the records that we have, and we just talked

5 about it, you were interviewed and signed three separate statements. And

6 what I'm asking you now, with this third statement of 10 March 2001, were

7 you contacted by the Prosecutor to make an additional statement or did you

8 contact them?

9 A. As I said, Your Honours, it was done in the same way. They

10 invited me and I came to their office. And I provided additional

11 clarifications upon questions being asked, obviously.

12 Q. Did they tell you why it was they then wanted to talk to you a

13 third time? Did they tell you what it was that was -- that they were

14 interested in that they hadn't asked you before?

15 A. Your Honours, there were additions to be made. Then they didn't

16 ask me to mark the checkpoints. During my third interview, they handed me

17 a piece of paper for me to make markings where the checkpoints had been.

18 Q. All right. I want you to look, first of all, at the first

19 statement that you made. That would be the one dated -- the last date on

20 it is 27 May 1997, and I want you to look at the English version of that

21 statement.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you speak English or not?

23 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, I'm not going to ask him anything

24 about the language of the statement in English.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So let's hear what this is all about.

Page 18285


2 Q. Have you got that in front of you, sir?

3 A. Yes, Your Honours, I do.

4 Q. As we talked about a moment ago with regard to the procedure used

5 in taking these statements, what they do is create a statement in English,

6 read that statement back to you in your language, and then ask you to sign

7 the English version of the statement, don't they?

8 A. Yes. Yes, that's how it was, Your Honours.

9 Q. And if you look at the first page, I take it the initials there on

10 the bottom belong to you and that you made -- you wrote your initials on

11 there.

12 A. Yes, Your Honours.

13 Q. And I'd like you to just very briefly look at each page of this

14 statement and confirm that you initialed each page, one after the other.

15 A. Yes, Your Honours. All of the pages contain my initials.

16 Q. And on page 10, do you see your signature, at the bottom of page

17 10, under the date 27 May 1997?

18 A. Yes. I see my whole signature, not merely my initials.

19 Q. And what it says right above your signature, sir, is this: "This

20 statement has been read over to me in the Bosnian language and is true to

21 the best of my knowledge and recollection." And of course, that was read

22 to you in your own language before you were asked to sign that statement,

23 wasn't it?

24 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct. But it is not the same to

25 listen to a text being read out to you and then read through it yourself

Page 18286

1 later on.

2 Q. I'd like you now to look at the second statement, the one of

3 12 October 2000. And again, I want you to look at the English version.

4 And first of all, I think you'll agree with me that the same procedure was

5 used, the statement was taken in English, then read back to you in your

6 own language, and you were asked to put your signature or initials on each

7 page and then sign it at the end, and you did all of that, didn't you?

8 And I want you to look at each page and confirm to us that the initials

9 there belong to you.

10 A. Yes, Your Honours. All the pages bear my initials or my full

11 signature.

12 Q. And if you look at page 9, sir, the witness acknowledgment there

13 on page 9 is actually written in your language, and I think what it says

14 is that the statement was read to you in the Bosnian language and that it

15 is true to the best of your knowledge and recollection. Is that what that

16 says?

17 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's it.

18 Q. And you signed that, didn't you?

19 A. Yes, Your Honours, I signed it.

20 Q. Finally, I'd like you to look at the third statement, the one of

21 10 March 2001. And the same exercise: Look at each page and confirm that

22 the initials are yours.

23 A. Yes, Your Honours, all the pages bear my initials or signature.

24 Q. Then if you look at page 7, the witness acknowledgment now appears

25 in both languages, and again says: "The statement has been read over to

Page 18287

1 me in the Bosnian language and is true to the best of my knowledge and

2 recollection." And you signed -- you signed that, didn't you?

3 A. Yes, Your Honours.

4 Q. Now, with regard to any of these statements, nobody refused to

5 tell you what was contained in these statements; in fact, they were read

6 to you, weren't they?

7 A. Yes, that's correct.

8 Q. And these investigators from the Office of the Prosecutor made it

9 clear to you that what they wanted from you was to tell them the truth,

10 didn't they?

11 A. Yes, Your Honours.

12 Q. And they certainly gave you an opportunity to make any changes in

13 those statements that you wished to make if you thought something in those

14 statements was not true, didn't they?

15 A. Yes, you're right.

16 Q. And this first statement, the one from 1997, was a statement you

17 made just about five years, and even four years, four to five years after

18 the events that you were reporting. You were making that statement in

19 1996/1997; correct?

20 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct.

21 Q. And yesterday, and again today, I believe, when you -- shortly

22 after you came in the courtroom, the Judge asked you to stand up and read

23 a statement which said: "I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth,

24 the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." Correct?

25 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct.

Page 18288












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Page 18289

1 Q. And that statement is similar to the statement contained in these

2 statements that you were telling the truth to the best of your ability

3 when you gave those statements. It's a similar kind of acknowledgment,

4 isn't it?

5 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honour.

6 Q. Do you think it was less important for you to tell the truth when

7 you gave your statements than it was when you took that oath here

8 yesterday and today, or more important, or the same?

9 A. Let me tell you the following: For me, it's equally important, in

10 all of these cases. Whenever I speak to anyone, not merely here before

11 the Court, but to anyone, I always tell the truth.

12 Q. Thank you. That's all I was asking.

13 Now, I'm going to go through some things that you said in these

14 statements, sir, and this will be somewhat lengthy. It will take some

15 time to get through it. And one of the difficulties that I will have, of

16 course, is always finding the B/C/S version of the English. But I think

17 we can probably work through that and find it, with your help, maybe.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Gustin, perhaps, could furnish me with a copy of

19 the B/C/S version of the three statements, if you have them.

20 Yes, Mr. Ackerman. Sorry to have interrupted you.

21 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Your Honour. I understand what you're

22 getting ready to do is kind of help us with that process, and I appreciate

23 it.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: If I can.


Page 18290

1 Q. The first subject-matter, sir, that I want to discuss with you

2 revolves around that time when TO weapons were retrieved from Kotor Varos

3 by the JNA. And you recall that incident, don't you?

4 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honours, I do recall that incident.

5 Q. In the English version, your description of that begins at the

6 bottom of page 5, the language: "In early April of 1992," you say, "I

7 recall an incident where the weapons in the Kotor Varos police station

8 were retrieved by the JNA." And you said at that time that you were

9 working the night shift; correct?

10 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct.

11 Q. And you said in this first statement that about 2.00 a.m., a CSB

12 inspector by the name of Savo Todorovic appeared, and you said: "He

13 wanted me to take him on patrol and conduct a control visit within the

14 municipality." You told us in the statement that you felt uneasy, so you

15 took your weapon with extra rounds with you. True? That's what you said?

16 A. Yes, that's true.

17 Q. You went to -- you say you went to Maslovare and Siprage and were

18 gone three to four hours.

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. And then this: When you returned to the police station, after you

21 had parted from Savo Todorovic, the duty officer there at the time was a

22 gentleman named Anto Kljajic; correct?

23 A. That's correct.

24 Q. And you say that Anto Kljajic said to you: Boss, they took all

25 the weapons to Banja Luka.

Page 18291

1 A. That's correct, yes.

2 Q. He told you that JNA soldiers in camouflage uniforms had appeared

3 with three or four trucks and removed -- and this is what you said he told

4 you: And removed all the TO weapons which were stored in the SUP basement

5 armoury. Correct?

6 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct.

7 Q. And then, according to the statement, on this page where your

8 initials appear at the bottom, you said: "Those were TO weapons which

9 really belonged to the JNA." Now, I know it's your contention now that

10 that's not the case, but that's what was written in your first statement,

11 wasn't it?

12 A. No chance I ever said this. That's how it reads, but I believe

13 this must be a mistranslation. I simply couldn't have said this, because

14 I knew who the weapons belonged to.

15 Q. So this, then, is a mistranslation. That's your explanation for

16 this?

17 A. Yes, that's what I believe.

18 Q. So when you said what you said about that in your language, it's

19 your position that the translator translated that into English improperly

20 and reported that you said: "These were TO weapons which really belonged

21 to the JNA"? That's your position; correct?

22 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honours.

23 Q. And the investigator who was preparing this statement, of course,

24 wrote down that mistranslation that he had heard from the translator, and

25 so put in this English statement that you said: "These were TO weapons

Page 18292

1 which really belonged to the JNA," right?

2 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct.

3 Q. And then it's your position that when the translator read this

4 back to you, the translator again, in reading the language which you

5 had -- which had been written down as having been said by you, "these were

6 TO weapons which really belonged to the JNA," mistranslated it the other

7 direction, from English to your language and didn't read that to you

8 correctly. That would have to be your position, wouldn't it?

9 A. Yes, you're right. Maybe this simply didn't register with me at

10 the time. Maybe I didn't hear that particular bit. I can't claim that it

11 was a mistranslation, but my ears would have registered this had the

12 person said this. I would have made the correction there and then.

13 Q. Well, sir, where we started today, and you agreed with me that

14 this was absolutely true -- where we started today was with you agreeing

15 that you said on Tuesday that the changes required in the three statements

16 were the consequence of problems in translation/interpretation and not

17 errors of fact on your behalf. Now, you agreed with that. Do you want to

18 change that now and say that wasn't the truth?

19 A. There is nothing for me to change. This is how it happened. Now,

20 how the mistake came about, whether there was the translation or myself

21 not paying sufficient attention when the text was being read back to me in

22 my language, I really can't tell you right now. But the statement has

23 always been the same and will remain identical.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Just to make sure and clear this in my mind.

25 Witness, Mr. Sadikovic, could you go, please, to page 6 of your statement

Page 18293

1 in B/C/S. Page 6, first paragraph, seven lines from the bottom of that

2 paragraph. [B/C/S spoken] What does that mean to you? Does it translate

3 into what has been -- you have been told by Mr. Ackerman.

4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, can I just remind you of something Your

5 Honour? This isn't what he said originally. This is the English being

6 sent to the translation unit here. So it's not the original words either

7 used.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: I know. I know. I know.

9 MS. KORNER: You do know that.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, yes. I just want to make sure that what we

11 have in the B/C/S corresponds to what we have in the English. I know what

12 you're saying, but I just want to make sure that what we have in the B/C/S

13 is indeed what we have in the English version. Sometimes it doesn't

14 tally.

15 MS. KORNER: I'm sorry. I just thought I'd remind Your Honour of

16 that.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: What you read there in the B/C/S version of your

18 statement, is it correct or is it a mistake?

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this is not correct.

20 It simply can't be correct. TO is TO and JNA is JNA. Those were two

21 different concepts, two different institutions. And I simply couldn't

22 have said this, not a chance.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Let's move to something different,

24 Mr. Ackerman.


Page 18294












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Page 18295

1 Q. Now, what you told us was that instead of this being a translation

2 error, that it might have resulted from you not paying sufficient

3 attention when that page was being read to you in your own language. Is

4 that what you told us? It's page 19, line 21 of the LiveNote.

5 A. Yes, Your Honours. I did say that. It's either a mistranslation

6 or I wasn't paying sufficient attention when the translator was

7 translating for me and I wasn't paying enough attention, perhaps. Because

8 these interviews would usually take many hours. But this statement cannot

9 stand as it is.

10 Q. Now, when we talked a few moments ago about the oath that you took

11 here when you started your testimony, you told me you saw that as being

12 the same as the acknowledgment you made when you signed these statements.

13 So if you were not paying attention when these were read back to you, in

14 view of that acknowledgment that you made, were you also not paying

15 attention when you were asked questions yesterday and today, and therefore

16 not answering correctly because of that lack of attention? Can we make

17 that assumption?

18 A. No, you can't make that assumption, Your Honours.

19 Q. So in your testimony here in this Chamber, any errors would be

20 errors of translation, not errors resulting from you not paying attention;

21 is that a fair statement?

22 A. I think that's a fair statement.

23 Q. You went on to say then in your first statement, with regard to

24 these weapons being taken by the JNA: "Had I been present, I would have

25 not allowed the weapons to be taken." And my question is: How would you

Page 18296

1 have stopped what appears to be several armed JNA soldiers by yourself?

2 How would you have done that?

3 A. Your Honours, I wouldn't have done it alone. I would have woken

4 the president of the municipality. I wouldn't have allowed the lorry to

5 leave before a meeting took place in the morning, and someone took a

6 decision, the relevant people from my municipality taking a decision

7 whether the weapons would stay or go.

8 Q. So you do believe that there was an ability there to prevent these

9 JNA soldiers from doing what it was they were doing?

10 A. I think so, yes.

11 Q. In your -- in this statement, you of course told us that these

12 weapons were taken from the police station. When you gave your second

13 statement, and it's on page 2, paragraph 6. It's actually the first

14 actual page of the statement, paragraph 6, you announced that that had to

15 be corrected, that what you said in your initial statement that the

16 weapons were located in the Kotor Varos police station was not correct and

17 what you should have -- what it should reflect is that they were located

18 in the Kotor Varos Territorial Defence armoury; correct?

19 A. Yes, yes. That's correct, Your Honours. It's in the same

20 building, one building, two different services. They have their own

21 storage facility and we have our own. That is, we used to have it.

22 Q. And then finally I want to, with regard to this issue, in your

23 third statement, on paragraph 4 -- page 4 -- we've covered that, so I

24 won't go into that.

25 I want to talk with you now about the meetings that you had with

Page 18297

1 Stojan Zupljanin. It's page 6 of the -- your first statement, your

2 original statement, where you talk about meeting with Zupljanin, and what

3 you say is that on 18 or 19 May, you were invited to meet with him at the

4 CSB office in Banja Luka; correct?

5 A. Yes, it is, Your Honours. It is correct.

6 Q. And you tell us in that first statement that when you arrived in

7 his office, that there was whiskey on the table.

8 A. No. It was as we were sitting there, then Mr. Zupljanin's

9 secretary brought the drinks.

10 Q. Well, the language that I'm referring to is in your first

11 statement, sir. It says: "When I entered his office, there was whiskey

12 on the table." That's the language I see in that paragraph that

13 begins: "On 18 or 19 May, 1992 ..." And I think you have it in front of

14 you and can see it yourself.

15 A. Yes. That is how I put it.

16 Q. Another translation error, or is that what you said?

17 A. Let me tell you now: I can't remember whether I said that it had

18 been on the table or had been brought later.

19 Q. You wouldn't have said there was whiskey on the table if that

20 hadn't been true, would you?

21 A. Well, I have no reason. I think it was, but this is a detail, and

22 one can't really retain all the details in one's memory.

23 Q. And you don't remember that now. You don't remember when you

24 arrived there that there was whiskey on the table, do you?

25 A. Well, Your Honours, I cannot say 100 per cent that it was there,

Page 18298

1 but I think it was.

2 Q. If you recall it today, if you have a memory today of that, would

3 you tell us whether it was in glasses or in a whiskey bottle or --

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Shall we move, Mr. Ackerman, to the next question?

5 Don't answer that question. Let's move to something different,

6 Mr. Ackerman.


8 Q. You then went on to say that in addition to this whiskey being on

9 the table when you arrived, that during your stay there, Mr. Zupljanin's

10 secretary, Mira, brought in more drinks; right?

11 A. Yes, that's what it says here.

12 Q. And you said this was a meeting that went on for three or four

13 hours, and I'm just wondering if you drank quite a bit of alcohol during

14 that meeting. And if he did too.

15 A. Well, no. It was all within limits.

16 Q. I think what you've told us, and certainly what you said in this

17 first statement, was that basically Mr. Zupljanin wanted you to deal with

18 the people in Kotor Varos and get them to surrender their weapons, the

19 Muslim people. Actually, what you say is this -- I want to be

20 accurate: "He wanted to use me as a Muslim to deal with the people in

21 Kotor Varos in order to get them to surrender their weapons." Correct?

22 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct.

23 Q. And you said you were looking for a way out, so you asked him to

24 give you a month or two to make a decision and establish your contacts in

25 Kotor Varos?

Page 18299

1 A. Yes. I needed more time to talk people into something like that.

2 I had to talk to very many people, go to every village, to every hamlet.

3 Q. And you told him, according to this statement, this: "Come and

4 put your flags up. We Muslims will leave our office with dignity and walk

5 out." That's what I see in your statement. Do you see the same thing?

6 A. Yes, Your Honours.

7 Q. Zupljanin told you he couldn't give you a month or two, that he

8 would give you seven days; right?

9 A. Right, Your Honours.

10 Q. Now, if you look at the next paragraph, sir, from the one we've

11 been referring to, the statement says this. It says that you said

12 this: "One week later, about 25/26 May 1992, I went back to Zupljanin in

13 Banja Luka and told him that I would not accept his offer. He was not

14 pleased and said he thought I was smarter than this. The meeting this

15 time only lasted for about five minutes. Zupljanin stated that they,

16 meaning the Serbs, would follow their plans and go into Kotor Varos."

17 Now, that's what appears in your statement; right?

18 A. Right, Your Honours.

19 Q. And then when you returned from this meeting, you reported to Anto

20 Mandic, you say, what it was that had happened. Next paragraph.

21 A. Yes, yes, that's right.

22 Q. And just remind the Chamber who Anto Mandic was at the time.

23 A. Mr. Anto Mandic was the president of the assembly of the

24 municipality of Kotor Varos and the president of the HDZ in Kotor Varos.

25 Q. Now, if we look at your second statement, sir, this is the one of

Page 18300












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Page 18301

1 12 October 2000, on the first page, paragraph 8, you say that what your

2 first statement reports about: "We Muslims will leave our office with

3 dignity and walk out" was incorrect, that what you actually said was: "We

4 Muslims will leave our offices peacefully and with dignity and walk out,

5 but don't hurt the people." Right?

6 A. Yes, right, Your Honours.

7 Q. And it's your position that this is another double translation

8 error?

9 A. I merely added something. It was not an error. I merely added

10 the word "with dignity." And now, I can't find it. When I find it, I'll

11 give you exactly the wording.

12 Q. Tell me what you're looking for. Maybe I can help you.

13 A. The second statement, the one of 2000.

14 Q. Page 2, paragraph 8.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: It starts with [B/C/S spoken].

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm sorry. Are you talking about

17 the 10th of March, 2001?

18 JUDGE AGIUS: We're talking of the statement of the 12th of

19 October of the year 2000, the second statement. The first page, bottom

20 half of the first page, there is a paragraph numbered 8, starting with

21 [B/C/S spoken]. This is what Mr. Ackerman referred you to.

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm sorry. Which page, edition

23 2000?

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Page 1, at the top right-hand corner, you see

25 a printed number, Prijevod 03007069. Then down to the second --

Page 18302

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's fine, Your Honours.

2 That's fine.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.

4 Mr. Ackerman wants to know whether this is another case of

5 mistaken or erroneous translation, and I -- if I read you well when you

6 started answering that question, you said: No, this wasn't a mistake. I

7 just wanted to add, give more information, clarify my previous statement.

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I merely added. It wasn't an

9 error. It was only -- but leave the people alone. Don't hurt the

10 people. And we shall leave with dignity. And perhaps I said it even

11 then. I can't recollect. But this is what was missing: "Don't hurt

12 people" or "leave people alone." And that was the gist, the most

13 important part of that sentence.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.

15 Mr. Ackerman.


17 Q. Are you saying that you said that in your first statement and it

18 wasn't properly recorded in your statement or are you saying that you

19 added that when you made the second statement? It's important that you

20 tell me which of those it is.

21 A. I think I realised that this was missing, because that is the

22 heart of my sentence: Yes, we shall leave our offices, but just leave

23 people alone. And that was missing in the first version.

24 Q. Because you didn't say it the first time and then you added it the

25 second time; is that your position?

Page 18303

1 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honours. And this is very important in that

2 sense, in all that.

3 Q. So when you told us this morning that all of the corrections that

4 you had to make over the years were a consequence of problems in

5 translation/interpretation, that was not totally true, was it; there were

6 other reasons you made corrections?

7 A. Your Honours, it is natural. Perhaps there was a mistake on my

8 part, because this was very important to mention. And if I didn't do it

9 then, then I supplemented it, that is, added, in my second statement.

10 Q. Let's go to your third statement now, and this is the one, sir,

11 that's dated 10 March 2001. It's the -- I'm on page 4 of the English

12 version. It's a paragraph that begins with the language: "In my signed

13 statement given in 2000 ..." What you say at the end of that paragraph is

14 this: "In my statement," that's referring to your first statement, "I'm

15 quoted to have said that one week later, about 25/26 May 1992 I went back

16 to Zupljanin in Banja Luka and told him that I would not accept his

17 offer." Then you say this: "This is not correct. Zupljanin gave me one

18 week to answer him, but I never did answer him, and did not meet Zupljanin

19 a second time." Right?

20 A. Yes, right, Your Honours.

21 Q. So my question, sir, is this: When your first statement reports

22 at length that you went back to him on the 25/26 May and told him you

23 would not accept his offer, that he was not pleased with that, told you

24 were smarter than that, thought you were smarter than that, that the

25 meeting lasted five minutes, that the Serbs would follow their plans, go

Page 18304

1 to Kotor Varos, and that you went back to Kotor Varos and reported to Anto

2 Mandic that you had had this meeting and what had happened, I take it it's

3 your position that that whole bit of language there, virtually that whole

4 paragraph, was a translation error, that you never said that you had a

5 second meeting, but somehow it got into this statement. Is that your

6 position?

7 A. No, Your Honours. I said that certain things could have been

8 translation errors, but that naturally I do not remember every detail and

9 every single thing. But as I think about things, as I roll the film back,

10 then I -- then some things come back to me, those that happened, and in

11 this particular case, it had to do with Mr. Zupljanin. But it is only

12 natural, when one pulls his wits together and thinks, and then you realise

13 that you went wrong there, and then I listened to what I said and I

14 re-examined myself in a certain way.

15 Q. Well, I'm now really confused, because I don't know what's true.

16 I don't know whether you had a second meeting with Zupljanin or whether

17 you didn't. So tell us.

18 A. Let me tell you, Your Honours. I didn't have a second meeting.

19 Now, when I'm thinking about it, I didn't. I was to meet again with him

20 in seven days' time, but I didn't, and that is why I made the correction.

21 Q. So in 1997, when you made your statement, you just sort of made

22 this up that you had had this second meeting and that after this second

23 meeting you went and saw Anto Mandic and reported to him that you had had

24 this second meeting and told him what had happened? You just made all

25 that up in 1996 or 1997?

Page 18305

1 A. No, Your Honours, I did not make it up. I reported to Mandic

2 about the first meeting, what we had talked. But there was an

3 understanding that I would go back in seven days' time. But I didn't.

4 There was some reason why I didn't. But we were supposed to meet again in

5 seven days' time. However, there was some objective reason for which I

6 did not meet with him again and merely spoke to him on the telephone.

7 Q. But you said in that first statement, you told the investigators

8 that you had had this second meeting with Zupljanin. My question is:

9 Where did that come from? Did you just make that up?

10 A. Your Honours, I have no reason to make anything up.

11 Q. That's not my question. My question is: Did you just make it up?

12 A. No, Your Honours, I did not make it up.

13 Q. Then the only conclusion I think we can come to, sir, is that you

14 told that to the investigators because you believed, four or five years

15 after the event, that you had in fact actually had a second meeting;

16 correct?

17 A. Then why would I make corrections, after I had read it? Then why

18 would have I corrected it? It would have stayed in the way I had worded

19 it the first time.

20 Q. You just asked the question that I've been trying to ask you. If

21 you believed that you had had this meeting with Zupljanin in 1997 and

22 reported that you believed it, how did it happen to get changed then in

23 2001, or 2000? And when did that change in your mind?

24 A. Your Honours, whenever I give a statement, I always analyse

25 myself, and I try to put the orders in a proper sequence -- the events in

Page 18306












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Page 18307

1 a proper sequence. Excuse me. And I try to think if I went wrong

2 somewhere and if I presented the events in the chronological sequence as

3 they happened. And then when I realise that mistake, when I rolled my

4 film back and when I registered this mistake, then I saw that, as a matter

5 of fact, it didn't happen, that it had been agreed that we would meet in

6 seven days, but there were some objective reasons. We talked over the

7 telephone with the chief several times, but that meeting did not take

8 place. And that was why later on in my other statement I said that that

9 meeting did not take place. That there was a telephone conversation, but

10 for some objective reasons that existed then, the meeting didn't take

11 place, and that is, Mr. Zupljanin, the head, was too busy to see me. So

12 he postponed that meeting several -- two or three times, and that meeting

13 did not take place.

14 Q. Now, in all of your three statements, you've never said that, that

15 he was too busy to see you and postponed the meeting two or three times.

16 That's brand new today, isn't it?

17 A. It is new, but there had to be a reason why we did not meet after

18 those seven days.

19 Q. Well, it seems to me that what you're saying is that only after

20 you reflect and have a chance to look at and read your statements can you

21 tell us if you have made errors or mistakes, and I understand that. So

22 with regard to the testimony you gave yesterday and today, we should not

23 put much stock in it until you've had a chance to look it over and tell us

24 whether you've made more errors and mistakes again; correct?

25 A. Your Honours, well, after all, these events happened so many years

Page 18308

1 ago, so it is natural that there are mistakes, because nobody is perfect,

2 and nobody can keep it all one's head. 98 or perhaps 95 per cent are

3 quite accurate. Now, 5 per cent could be more or less accurate. Of

4 course there are things that I'm not sure about, but it's only natural. I

5 mean, those -- the times were such, and all the events were such, and

6 after all, it was so many years ago, and one -- you cannot absorb it all

7 and remember absolutely everything 100 per cent of everything that

8 happened.

9 Q. So among the things you've told us the last couple of days, there

10 lurks 5 per cent which is not accurate, and so we're stuck with the

11 proposition of trying to figure out which 5 per cent you told us the last

12 two days is not accurate, aren't we?

13 MS. KORNER: That's a comment, please.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Korner, your objection is sustained.

15 Mr. Ackerman.


17 Q. Mr. Zupljanin --

18 JUDGE AGIUS: You can ask him actually which facts arising from

19 his testimony of yesterday he has some doubts upon, if there are any.


21 Q. Are there any from your testimony yesterday that is in what you

22 call that 5 per cent you're not sure about?

23 A. No, Your Honours. I corrected the things that I had doubts about.

24 Q. Now, again, you still, I take it, agree that the acknowledgment

25 that you swore to with regard to these statements, or that you signed with

Page 18309

1 regard to the statements you made, you treat the same way as the

2 acknowledgment you made to these Judges to tell the truth here; you see

3 those as the same obligation to be truthful, don't you?

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. You've put this question before, Mr. Ackerman.

5 He's answered it.


7 Q. Mr. Zupljanin tried very hard to block your appointment and keep

8 you from taking your position as deputy commander, didn't he?

9 A. Yes, Your Honours.

10 Q. In fact, he told you that you would never -- that you would never

11 be able to assume that position you had been appointed to; didn't he?

12 A. Yes, Your Honours.

13 Q. But it really turns out that he didn't have the power or authority

14 to block your appointment, and you in fact were put in that position,

15 weren't you?

16 A. Yes, Your Honours, but the president of the municipality, I

17 personally, and the political top leadership in Sarajevo, both Muslims and

18 Croat, everybody had to intercede, and that struggle went on for several

19 months, and that would include also the intervention of the European

20 community, which at that time came to the meetings.

21 Q. Yes, and it was January of 1992 before you were actually permitted

22 to take that position, wasn't it?

23 A. Yes, Your Honours.

24 Q. And you told us that Zupljanin had his own candidate in mind for

25 that position, a person named Sejdo Tatar; correct?

Page 18310

1 A. Correct, Your Honours.

2 Q. And Sejdo Tatar is a Muslim; correct?

3 A. Yes, he's a Muslim.

4 Q. And what you told us yesterday, it's LiveNote page 16, beginning

5 at line 13, as why Zupljanin wanted to appoint Tatar, you said: "The

6 reason for it was that this gentleman, Sejdo Tatar, was married to a Serb,

7 and he thought," I think referring to Zupljanin, "that he would be able to

8 manipulate him and that he would do whatever he ordered him to do."

9 That's what you told us yesterday; correct?

10 A. Yes, Your Honours, and that is how it was. Tatar was there all

11 the time. He stayed there with the Serbs and performed the duties as

12 ordered by Zupljanin.

13 Q. And so was it at this three or four-hour meeting that you had with

14 Zupljanin where he told you that he thought he would be able to manipulate

15 Tatar and get him to do whatever he ordered him to do? Was that when

16 Zupljanin told you that or did he tell you at some other time?

17 A. He did not say that to me at that meeting. I had already been

18 appointed and was performing my duties. But knowing Sejdo, what kind of a

19 man he is, because he's my neighbour and so on and so forth, that is what

20 I thought of him and that is how it was. He was there all the time. He

21 was the only Muslim who was there throughout -- in the police station.

22 Q. Are you saying that Zupljanin --

23 A. Excuse me, Your Honours. I mean executives. I don't mean rank

24 and file law officers. I mean bosses. I mean people who held executive

25 positions.

Page 18311

1 Q. Are you saying Zupljanin never did tell you what he thought he

2 would be able to do with Sejdo Tatar? Is that what you're saying?

3 A. No. He said that Sejdo was a good professional, that he knew the

4 job, and as long as there was such a man in the police in Kotor Varos, I

5 wouldn't be able to go there and get the job.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: In fact, if you read his statement, he never said

7 that Zupljanin told him that he wanted Tatar because he was married to a

8 Serb and that he would be sort of -- one place.

9 MR. ACKERMAN: He's reporting what Zupljanin thought. That's the

10 only way he could know what Zupljanin thought.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: What he thought. No.

12 MR. ACKERMAN: No. He's thinking what Zupljanin thought. That's

13 what he's reporting.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, Mr. Ackerman. Let me read it out to

15 you. First statement, second page, last paragraph --

16 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, I'm referring to the testimony

17 yesterday, page 16, line 13.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: But in his statement, I said he said that Zupljanin

19 said that if he needed a Muslim to fill this position, he would prefer

20 Tatar. "I believe the reason was that even though Tatar is a Muslim and

21 was married to a Serb woman, he was more likely to be loyal to the Serb

22 cause than I was."

23 And then he continues to say what Zupljanin said. But --

24 MR. ACKERMAN: But yesterday --

25 JUDGE AGIUS: If that conflicts with what he stated on oath

Page 18312












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Page 18313

1 yesterday, then put it to him again and ask for him to clarify which one

2 of the two versions is the correct one; and if he has a reason why they're

3 different.

4 MR. ACKERMAN: It clearly does, Your Honour, and I'll be happy to

5 do that after we have the break.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. We'll have a 25-minute break. Thank

7 you.

8 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.

9 --- On resuming at 11.03 a.m.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Ackerman.

11 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Your Honour.

12 Q. Before we broke, sir, we were talking about this business of

13 Zupljanin and Sejdo Tatar. Let me read to you the answer that you gave

14 yesterday, and this is on page 16, line 13. It had to do with you being

15 opposed by Zupljanin and Tepic. Ms. Korner said: "Why were they opposing

16 you?" And your answer was this: "Mr. Zupljanin told me something like he

17 had heard that I was not a bad man but that he had already a Muslim in the

18 police." And I think you said: "Sejdo Tatar, who was a good policeman,

19 highly competent one, and that as long as he was there, there was no way I

20 could make my way into the police station, and the reason for it was that

21 this gentleman, Sejdo Tatar, was married to a Serb." And this is the

22 language I'm mostly interested in: "And he thought that he would be able

23 to manipulate him and that he would do whatever he ordered him to."

24 Now, when you say "he thought that he would be able to manipulate

25 him," am I correct in my conclusion that you're referring to what

Page 18314

1 Zupljanin thought about Sejdo Tatar?

2 JUDGE AGIUS: The question should be phrased a little bit

3 different, Mr. Ackerman. When you say he thought that he would be able to

4 manipulate him, am I correct in my conclusion that you're referring to

5 what you think what Zupljanin thought about Sejdo Tatar. Because I don't

6 think that at any moment the witness said Zupljanin told him what he

7 thought.

8 A. Yes, Your Honours. That's my opinion. I am entitled to an

9 opinion of my own, and I do have arguments to back it up.


11 Q. So what you told us there was your opinion as to what Zupljanin

12 must have thought; you don't know really what he thought, do you?

13 A. Of course I don't know what it was that Zupljanin thought, but he

14 said that as long as he had a man like Sejdo back at the police station,

15 there was no chance for me to be there and do my job.

16 Q. Right. All right. I'm going to another issue now.

17 In your first statement, on page 5, in paragraph 6 in the English

18 version - and I'd like to get through this rather quickly, because I don't

19 think it's terribly important, but I'm interested in it - you're talking

20 about -- I'm going to read you the entire paragraph: "I recall that four

21 to five tanks had been stationed in a fenced compound at Maslovare, and

22 sometime in April 1992. The official explanation for this action given by

23 the brigade commander, Slobodan Zupljanin, was that the deployment of

24 these troops was a training exercise. I believe that was how Slobodan

25 Zupljanin was referred to in documents captured by the BH army in Skender

Page 18315

1 Vakuf."

2 Now, if we then look at your second statement, the one from 12

3 October of 2000, that first page, paragraph 5, the first thing you say

4 right at the bottom before that list of numbers, you say: "I've reviewed

5 my statement given to the ICTY and would like to make the following minor

6 corrections concerning information that is incorrect." And one of those

7 corrections was what you made there in paragraph 5, that instead of

8 Skender Vakuf, it should say Jajce and Sipovo. My question is: Is that a

9 translation error or is that that you changed your recollection of that

10 issue?

11 A. Your Honours, this must have been a translation error, because we

12 never entered Skender. The Serbs held it for the whole time. But we did

13 enter Jajce and Sipovo. Therefore, this must have been a mistranslation.

14 But it certainly wasn't my mistake. I simply couldn't have said this,

15 because we never entered Skender. It was all the time in the hands of the

16 Serbs.

17 Q. Well, that raises what I think is a really interesting question,

18 because I don't know that there's any way to translate Skender Vakuf into

19 English in a way that turns it into Jajce and Sipovo. There's no

20 translation there. What you say in your language is Skender Vakuf, and

21 what we say in English is Skender Vakuf?

22 JUDGE AGIUS: May I remind you, Mr. Ackerman, that the previous

23 witness we had referred to you as Mr. Korner.

24 MS. KORNER: Almost as obsessed as you, Your Honour.

25 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Judge.

Page 18316

1 Q. That's true, isn't it, that there's no translation. When you say

2 Skender Vakuf, it's translated into English as Skender Vakuf.

3 A. Yes. There is no other way to translate that, Your Honours.

4 Q. So that couldn't be a translation error. I mean, you couldn't

5 have said Skender Vakuf and the translator have said Jajce and Sipovo.

6 That's just not possible, is it?

7 A. Of course I couldn't have said Skender.

8 Q. I should have put it the other way around. It's not possible that

9 you could have said Jajce and Sipovo and it have been reported by the

10 translator as Skender Vakuf. I mean, that just makes no sense, does it?

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's cut it short. It's obvious that someone made

12 a mistake. It's either you or the interpreters, or who translated what

13 you are saying. Who do you think it was?

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think I could not have possibly

15 made this mistake because I know full well where Jajce is, where Sipovo

16 is, and where Skender is.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's move to another question, Mr. Ackerman.


19 Q. Another separate issue now. On page 7 of your original statement,

20 you're talking about that day of 11 June 1992, when the convoy arrived

21 from Banja Luka. In your original statement, you said: "On 11 June 1992,

22 approximately 4.00 to 4.30 a.m.," and we're talking about Bajram at this

23 point, aren't we?

24 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honours.

25 Q. And you're saying that: "Approximately at 4.00 to 4.30 a.m., I

Page 18317

1 did not go to the mosque for worship due to the fact that I had had a few

2 beers." And that's what you said in your first statement, didn't you?

3 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honours.

4 Q. And then you said that instead you decided to go check on the

5 Muslim security near the mosque.

6 A. Yes, Your Honours. I met Mr. Slobodan Zupljanin in the evening.

7 We sat there and we had two or three beers each, and in my religion, once

8 you've had a drink, even if it was just a glass of beer, you could not go

9 and pray, in our way, at least. That was the reason, and that's why I

10 didn't go to pray at the mosque. And due to the situation, I made the

11 rounds of all the mosques.

12 Q. And what you said then in your second statement to correct what

13 was in your first statement, in paragraph 9 on that first page, you said,

14 instead of saying, "I had a few beers," that it should have said: "I had

15 had a few beers the night before in Maslovare." Correct?

16 A. Yes, that's correct. And I could not have had a beer at 4.00 in

17 the morning, obviously. It was the afternoon before in Maslovare, with

18 Slobodan Zupljanin.

19 Q. Well, some of us have beers in our refrigerators, and we could

20 have beers at 4.00 in the morning, and I suspect you could have too if you

21 wanted to. Am I wrong about that?

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't answer that question.

23 Next question, Mr. Ackerman.


25 Q. Page 46, line 18 of yesterday's testimony. Ms. Korner indicated

Page 18318












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Page 18319

1 she wanted to ask you what happened the day of the takeover, and you

2 answered this: "That day, that is, that morning, I was in front of the

3 mosque in my neighbourhood, that is, in my street in Donji Varos. I

4 didn't go for a prayer because I thought I'd visit all the mosques and I'd

5 see some people, and so on."

6 So yesterday your reason for not going for prayer was that you

7 thought you'd go visit all the mosques and see some people, not that you'd

8 had a few beers; right?

9 A. I did not only point that out yesterday. That was the primary

10 reason I'd had a few beers.

11 Q. My point was: You didn't mention it yesterday in your testimony

12 to this Trial Chamber, did you? You said that the reason you didn't go

13 pray was that you wanted to go visit the other mosques, not that you had

14 had a few beers.

15 A. It's possible that I didn't say that yesterday, but this was the

16 reason, and that's my final statement. That was the reason that I didn't

17 go and pray.

18 Q. Now, this mosque that you were at when the convoy arrived is this

19 one we just talked about that's near where you live, Donji Varos, I think,

20 and there had been some kind of security stationed at that mosque, I think

21 you said since Ramadan.

22 A. Yes, during the evening prayer, there were guards posted in the

23 villages and local communes also, and obviously for the evening prayer

24 too. In the evening, when a major number of believers congregate to say

25 the evening prayer.

Page 18320

1 Q. I understand that, but you're talking about 4.30 in the morning on

2 the 11 June, that there was security stationed near the mosque. That's

3 not in the evening; that's early in the morning. Right?

4 A. Yes. That is a prayer usually attended by an even greater number

5 of believers than the one in the evening. The guard obviously consisted

6 of the reserve police officers. One of the commanders, one of the members

7 of the reserve staff, Mujica Selimovic, was there, and the rest of the

8 patrol. It was a mixed patrol. There was a Croat man too. I can't

9 remember his name. It was a regular patrol, inspecting the guard posts.

10 They would just stay for a brief while, talk to the people there, and then

11 go about their own duties.

12 Q. But I'm not talking about a patrol. I'm talking about the Muslim

13 security that was stationed at the mosques. There was Muslim security

14 stationed at the mosques, wasn't there, since Ramadan?

15 A. No. That is an error, Your Honours. Guards around the mosque and

16 down that street, along that street, but not in the mosques. There was

17 never a single armed man inside the mosque.

18 Q. Well, let me just -- let me read for you, and maybe it was -- let

19 me just read the exact language: "On 11 June 1992, approximately 4.00 to

20 4.30 a.m., I did not go to the mosque for worship, due to the fact that I

21 had had a few beers. Instead, I decided to go and check on the Muslim

22 security we had stationed near the mosque since Ramadan."

23 Now, is that an accurate statement? Was there Muslim security

24 stationed near the mosque since Ramadan?

25 A. It was never just Muslim guards. It was a mixed guard. And yes,

Page 18321

1 there was security near the mosque.

2 Q. So is this a translation error in your first statement, where it

3 says "Muslim security"? Is that another one of those translation errors

4 that you've found?

5 A. It's difficult for me to say. I'll leave it up to you to be the

6 judge of that. I can only say that we always had mixed patrols and that

7 our Croat neighbours themselves insisted to be included on that and to be

8 part of the patrols and security. We had very, very good neighbourly

9 relations, and that was the reason.

10 Q. Well, it wasn't difficult for you to say on Tuesday, when you met

11 with the Prosecutor and said all of these changes made over the years in

12 your statements were the result of translation errors. And now today it's

13 difficult for you to say whether this is a translation error or not. Is

14 that your position?

15 A. First of all, we were speaking about one change, and that change

16 was certainly related to a mistranslation, the change about Zupljanin and

17 whether I came back several days later, that was my own uncertainty. I

18 was not fully certain and I later made the correction. Therefore, I still

19 stand by that statement. Now, whether it was my mistake originally or the

20 translators, I don't think that's a substantial point really. Those who

21 work simply make mistakes.

22 Q. In your second statement, and I'm now on page 6 of that, and

23 you're referring to this Muslim security. And here's what you say in your

24 second statement: "Concerning my previous statement, page 7, paragraph 2,

25 where I am talking about checking on the Muslim security we had stationed

Page 18322

1 near the mosque since Ramadan, the reason that we had assigned security to

2 this mosque is that we had assigned guards to all mosques because of the

3 number of visitors during this period and because -- and not because of

4 specific threats to the mosques." Correct?

5 A. Yes. Of course, it was for security reasons. This was discussed

6 at public meetings in the municipality and at the station. This was not

7 my personal decision. The decision was taken by the relevant offices in

8 charge of the security situation in the municipality of Kotor Varos.

9 Q. And on that occasion when you made the second statement, you

10 specifically directed your attention to the first statement, which talked

11 about Muslim security, and you made no change in that. Today you decided

12 that that ought to be Muslim and Croat security. That's the first time

13 you've said that; isn't it?

14 A. Not the first time. I've always claimed that, and I'll stick to

15 that. It was always mixed. It was never purely Muslim. I may have

16 failed to make a correction there. I'm not sure how that came about. But

17 I state this under full responsibility. We always had mixed patrols, Your

18 Honours, because that was what the patrols of the reserve forces were

19 like, and then those guards too, throughout the territory.

20 Q. Were there mixed patrols guarding the Catholic churches?

21 A. There was no need for that. It was the period of Ramadan. It

22 lasts for a month and then the period after that. But if Catholic

23 believers were assembling in that week also in large numbers, of course we

24 would have needed to provide security for that too.

25 Q. Now, the security that you provided at these mosques during

Page 18323

1 Ramadan and Bajram, that was to protect the mosques from what?

2 A. Not the mosques; the believers assembled there in large numbers.

3 So on their way out, to prevent incidents, there had been a number of

4 provocations, drunken soldiers returning from the front carrying weapons

5 and so on and so forth. The situation was tense in the town and in the

6 whole of the municipality. It was just before the war. If you look at

7 the dates, the war had already begun in Sarajevo and in certain other

8 parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

9 Q. If we go back to this day now on your first statement on 11 June

10 of 1992, you then talked about this convoy appearing and passing where you

11 were with this security force at the mosque, and you said this, and I'm

12 going to quote exactly what you said: "As the convoy passed, some of

13 those in our group which had weapons and rocket launchers wanted to

14 fight. I convinced them not to do this, as I recognised this convoy was

15 not like the other convoys of reservist Serb soldiers returning from the

16 front."

17 Now, then when you had an opportunity to meet with the Prosecutors

18 a second time -- well, let me ask you a different question first. You

19 said that you convinced them, that being this group that wanted to fight,

20 you convinced them not to do this. And then you gave the reason why you

21 convinced them not to do it. You say you convinced them not to do it

22 because you recognised this convoy was not like the other convoys of

23 reservist Serb soldiers returning from the front. Now, it's possible to

24 conclude from that that if it had been a convoy of reservist Serb soldiers

25 returning from the front, then it would have been okay for them to fight

Page 18324












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Page 18325

1 and attack that convoy; correct?

2 A. That's your interpretation, which of course you're perfectly

3 entitled to. I would not have allowed any kind of convoy to be attacked

4 by young people, young and inexperienced people. I was a professional

5 police officer. I knew how to sort such situations out. I would have

6 acted under the laws then in force and under the authority that I had.

7 Q. Now, you said that this -- that those in the group which had

8 weapons and rocket launchers wanted to fight and that you convinced them

9 not to do so. I take it if you had not been there, they may very well

10 have fired on this convoy, because you had to convince them not to.

11 A. Well, of course, you always get young and inexperienced people

12 having their own ideas. There was talk of people arriving from Banja Luka

13 to take over the power. Several dates had been set earlier, but it never

14 took place; it never materialised. So some people realised that this was

15 probably the convoy. So without thinking twice, maybe these people would

16 have tried to stop the convoy from entering the town, and that's why I did

17 not allow that to happen.

18 Q. And if in fact they had fired on the convoy, it certainly would

19 have appeared to the persons in the convoy that they were being fired at

20 from a mosque, wouldn't it?

21 A. Well, I don't know what -- no, fire wouldn't have been opened from

22 the mosque. You couldn't do that. But from somewhere near the mosque.

23 And what the people in the convoy might think, well, how can I know what

24 they might think?

25 Q. When you revisited that issue in your next statement, what I call

Page 18326

1 the second statement, and that would be the one of 12 October 2000, you

2 changed what you had said in the first statement. You said this: "When

3 the convoy passed our position, which was at the mosque at Donji Varos,

4 there were no more than six to ten men guarding the mosque. We were armed

5 with three automatic rifles between all of us, and one man had a Zolja

6 with one shell, not a rocket launcher."

7 So in the first statement there were rocket launchers; in the

8 second statement there's no rocket launcher at all, but a Zolja with one

9 shell. And then you say this: "To have fired on this convoy was not

10 considered by us, because we were outnumbered and they had superior

11 weapons."

12 Now, when you said in your first statement that members of that

13 group wanted to fight and you had to restrain them from doing so, was that

14 a translation error?

15 A. No. This is no translation error. It is accurate, and you can

16 check what this weapon is called. And whether I call it a Zolja or when

17 you say a rocket launcher, that sounds rather superior, but this is

18 something that any infantry man, any policeman can hold, and I merely

19 wanted to call it its right name. That's all.

20 Q. But when you said in your first statement that members of the

21 group wanted to fight when they saw this convoy, they wanted to fight this

22 convoy, and then in your second statement that you had to deter them from

23 doing that, talk them out of it. In your second statement, you then say:

24 "To have fired on this convoy was not considered by us." Now, those are

25 two different things, and I'm wondering if your first statement there was

Page 18327

1 a translation error or if you changed your story.

2 A. Your Honours, I didn't even think about firing in any of the

3 versions. I didn't change anything. I didn't correct anything. The

4 substance is the same in either version. I was against opening fire, and

5 I prevented it, and that is how it was, and that is the only way it was.

6 Q. So just to finish this: What you have just told them, told the

7 Judges, the Honourable Judges, that the statement: "Some of those in our

8 group which had weapons and rocket launchers wanted to fight. I convinced

9 them not to do this" is the same thing as: "To have fired on this convoy

10 was not considered by us," that there's no difference between those

11 statements. That's what you want to tell these Judges?

12 A. Of course there is no difference. I was against the shooting, and

13 there are a number of reasons for it, except that I didn't list them all

14 here. But I was, and I prevented it, and I stand by it, and that's how it

15 was.

16 Q. After you saw this convoy arrive, you told us that you went home,

17 and with your automatic rifle and a backpack filled with warm clothes,

18 jackets, medicine, and ammunition, you headed off towards the woods; that

19 you left with a group of about ten men, crossed the river, heading toward

20 Ravne. You then said in your first statement, on page 8, you said

21 this: "When I got to Ravne, I first set up a kitchen and arranged for a

22 group of our people to greet and assist the newcomers. I then established

23 a headquarters in a small house, from where we first based our

24 operations."

25 If we go to your second statement, first page, paragraph 11, you

Page 18328

1 corrected what you said in your first statement, from that small house

2 being a place where you first based your operations to where we defended

3 ourselves. So according to you, what your first statement should have

4 said: "I then established a headquarters in a small house from where we

5 defended ourselves." Correct?

6 A. Let me tell you: We were not either defending ourselves or

7 attacking at that time, because it was early days only. So that it was

8 the first day, and the second day. So it's the beginning, forming,

9 setting up a kitchen, rooms where we'll be. There was no defence there.

10 What I meant was the future time, the time to -- yet to come. But then

11 there was no defence or attack or anything. These were merely preparatory

12 organisation, discussing how to put up, how to organise ourselves, where

13 to accommodate, and that was it.

14 Q. Well, the fact is you changed your statement. You changed it

15 from "where we first based our operations" to "where we defended

16 ourselves." You specifically made that change. Let me suggest this to

17 you: The reason you made that change was this: When you saw the language

18 "where we first based our operations," that looked too much like you were

19 engaged in offensive operations, so you changed that to look more like you

20 were just defending yourselves. Now, that's what you did, and it had

21 nothing to do with the reality of the situation, did it?

22 A. Let me tell you: Naturally, when I read operations, it

23 sounded -- I mean, what operations? I mean, it's too big a word for the

24 situation that existed there, because there were no operations later, let

25 alone that first day. And that was why, because of this word

Page 18329

1 "operations." That is why the change took place. So of course I wrote --

2 that is -- said -- because what I meant was our further action, that is,

3 from where we defended ourselves and that is where our whole -- from where

4 our whole organisation started.

5 Q. Then your position that the language "where we first based our

6 operations," it appears in your first statement, is another translation

7 error?

8 A. And I'm repeating to you once again: It must have been an

9 interpretation error, because of what I said. But late -- that is --

10 that's what they said. But later on when I read it, I realised that that

11 was not the right word and that it simply did not correspond with the

12 context to which that event was referring to.

13 Q. As we've discussed before, then, it would have been a double

14 translation error. It was translated incorrectly from your language to

15 English and then translated incorrectly a second time when it was read

16 back to you in your language. That has to be your position, doesn't it?

17 A. No, Your Honours. It is one thing when an interpreter reads

18 something to me and I follow him, and it's another matter when I get that

19 same text later on and when I read it word after word after word, when I

20 think about it and analyse it. These are two different things. You know

21 it just as well.

22 Q. Well, what's going on right here in this Chamber is I am asking

23 you questions in English and an interpreter is translating those to you.

24 So if what you just said is correct, your testimony here is likely to be

25 filled with errors, isn't it?

Page 18330












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Page 18331

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't answer that question. Let's move to the next,

2 Mr. Ackerman.

3 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, I think it's an appropriate question.

4 I want to know if he believes that's the case.

5 MS. KORNER: It's not a question. It's a pure comment.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: It's a speculation as well. When we had reasons to

7 complain against the standard of interpretation, we did. But I think in

8 the last year or so, we are -- I for one am full of praise for the

9 standard of the interpretation.

10 MR. ACKERMAN: So am I, Your Honour. I certainly wasn't

11 suggesting that our translators in this courtroom were as bad as this

12 witness believes the Prosecutor's translators were when they took

13 statements from him.

14 MS. KORNER: I'm sorry, this is getting -- this whole

15 cross-examination is a question of Mr. Ackerman making speeches at the

16 witness and I object to this. There are proper questions to put and there

17 are not proper questions and what's going on at the moment are not proper

18 questions.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's move to the next question, Mr. Ackerman.


21 Q. When you had left and gone across the river and over toward Ravne,

22 somewhere in that trip you all kind of split up, and you went off to the

23 village of Vranic, to what you said was to inform the people of the

24 situation in Kotor Varos. Do you recall that?

25 A. Yes, Your Honours, I remember it well.

Page 18332

1 Q. Now, while you were talking about that in your initial statement

2 to the Prosecutor, you just mentioned that your wife and son had left

3 Kotor Varos already at Easter to live with relatives; correct?

4 A. Yes, correct. My wife and my son left on the last day of Easter.

5 Q. And that would have been what, March, April of 1992?

6 A. April 1992.

7 Q. And did they have any difficulty leaving? Did they have to sign

8 any of these documents you talked about or anything like that?

9 A. No, Your Honours. It was still peacetime, and the situation was

10 different. These documents came to -- to force following the 11th of

11 June. Prior to the 11th of June, no documents were signed.

12 Q. Now, let's go back to going to the village of Vranic, and what you

13 did was you went there and told the people there that there wasn't going

14 to be a Bajram this year, that they had to cancel the sporting tournament

15 that they had scheduled, and so forth; correct?

16 A. Yes, Your Honours, it is correct.

17 Q. And you asked them how many men were willing to join with you and

18 the others in the woods to defend the non-Serb population from the Serbs?

19 A. I didn't ask how many there were. I said to take care that

20 everybody gets involved. There was a local commander, and that was his

21 duty. I merely drew their attention to the gravity of the situation, to

22 the hard times ahead, and so on. I didn't ask how many there were, nor

23 did it matter, nor did I have any reason for asking that.

24 Q. So when you said in your first statement, and I'm at the bottom of

25 page 7 and then going over to page 8, about this trip to Vranic: "I also

Page 18333

1 told them what had happened in Kotor Varos and then asked how many men

2 were willing to join with me and others in the woods to defend the

3 non-Serb population from the Serbs," was that a translation error or did

4 you say that?

5 A. I didn't say it, because the number did not matter. I did not

6 discuss the subject. It was later on that numbers came up, but then it

7 didn't matter. I didn't discuss the strength.

8 Q. All right. Then you -- the statement reports that you said this:

9 "I asked them to gather whatever weapons and ammunition they possessed

10 and then join us at Ravne." Now, is that a translation error or did you

11 say that?

12 A. They were not to join me, because they had to guard their

13 villages. So I said weapons that you have. Because some of the weapons

14 the citizens never produced, because they were either wise or because they

15 were afraid to show it. They got these weapons out only after the war

16 started, so I knew that there were such instances and I said that all the

17 weapons should be put at the disposal and used, but they were not to come

18 and report to me at Ravne. They were to be in their villages and stand

19 guard there. I didn't need them at Ravne.

20 Q. We talked about the possibility of finishing your testimony today

21 and how it would be helpful if you answered my questions. So let me ask

22 it again. Your statement reports that you said: "I asked them to gather

23 whatever weapons and ammunition they possessed and then join us at

24 Ravne." Did you say that or is that another translation error?

25 A. I didn't say "to join us." Of course, to collect weapons, to get

Page 18334

1 ready, but once again, I tell you I didn't say "to join us."

2 Q. Now, there came a time when the group gathered together -- that

3 some of these -- I don't quite understand the sequence here, but there was

4 a time when Serbs started talking to people over megaphones and suggesting

5 they return to their homes. And you said that some of the people that had

6 joined you actually did leave and returned to their homes and that after

7 that happened, there were about 50 of you left, and that you considered to

8 be the beginning of the resistance?

9 A. Yes. At that time, at Ravne, there were 50 [Realtime transcript

10 read in error "15"] in Hadrovci, well, not literally in Hadrovci, there

11 were for instance 30; in Doljani say 40; in Vranic 30; in Voljanci 50.

12 But these were right next to me at the time and then the number grew and

13 increased in other territories as well.

14 Q. Now, this 50 that you talk about remaining with you, I assume when

15 it got down to that number, that everybody in that 50 had a weapon of some

16 form.

17 A. No, Your Honours. In the beginning, not everybody had a weapon.

18 Q. All right. Now, nobody had a uniform, none of the people that

19 were with you were wearing any kind of a uniform?

20 A. No. There were some hunting and suchlike, and some police --

21 belonging to the police reserve force, so that some of them were wearing

22 those uniforms. But there were no proper uniforms or patches.

23 Q. Just to make sure that the record is clear, page 54, line 5, when

24 I asked you about the 50 people at Ravne, you said at Ravne there were

25 50. The record says 15, but you said 50, didn't you?

Page 18335

1 A. I could never say 50 exactly. I could have said around 50, 49 or

2 something. It was never a definite figure.

3 Q. I agree with that. That's fine.

4 In your original statement, your first statement, you talked about

5 the people, this group of ten who went with you and crossed the river to

6 go to Ravne. And among the people you said that were with you were the

7 president of the SDA, Fikret Djikic, and a gentleman named Bakir Dizdar;

8 correct?

9 A. Yes. No. Bakir Dizdar wasn't there. Later on I saw it was a

10 mistake. I saw Bakir two or three days later. He couldn't have been with

11 us, because he was in the centre of the town. That is where he lives.

12 Q. Well, I know you said that later. I'm asking you if in your

13 original statement, did you say that -- and this is on page 7, near the

14 bottom in the English, did you say that Fikret Djikic and Bakir Dizdar

15 were part of this group of ten, that they were with you? My only question

16 is: Did you say that in your first statement, or was that another error

17 that you then corrected in your second statement?

18 A. I repeat it once again: Don't misunderstand me. I'm not saying

19 that interpreters are not good and they are not doing their job properly.

20 Perhaps I could have made that mistake. But I claim -- I put it to you

21 that I didn't say that Bakir was there, because I know who those people

22 who were with me were. I still know them, so that I really can say that I

23 stand by what I said, that Bakir was not there that first day.

24 Q. So if you didn't say -- if you didn't say at your first statement

25 that Bakir Dizdar was there, then I guess what you're saying is the

Page 18336












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Page 18337

1 interpreter just sort of made up this name and coincidentally it happened

2 to be someone who was in Kotor Varos?

3 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I thought I'd make it clear. This

4 really is not questioning. This is comment.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. And I was going to intervene myself.

6 The position, Mr. Sadikovic, is this: That if you read the first

7 statement, it does indeed say that you mentioned Bakir as being one of the

8 persons that accompanied you. You also now are stating that you know that

9 he wasn't one of the persons that accompanied you. What you're being

10 asked is: How come that in the first statement you mentioned Bakir as

11 forming part of the group? Did you make a mistake, which will not be the

12 end of the world, or did someone else put in Bakir in that statement

13 without you mentioning him?

14 A. No, Your Honours. There is no way that I did mention him, because

15 how else could somebody know his name [as interpreted]. So perhaps I did

16 mention his name, but I also said that he joined us later. I'm not trying

17 to dodge my responsibility. I'm not saying that I'm not making mistakes.

18 After all, it is human to make mistakes. So I did mention Bakir, but not

19 that he was -- not in that context, that he was with us that first day,

20 but that he joined us later. Because I probably did mention him. Nobody

21 else could have mentioned him except myself.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: I'll try to explain to you what's happening here,

23 because I don't think you are appreciating the exercise that -- or the

24 reasons why -- behind the exercise that Mr. Ackerman has embarked upon.

25 This all arises from what you told the intern from the Office of the

Page 18338

1 Prosecutor that interviewed you last Tuesday. Because in that interview,

2 you didn't say: I am making corrections because I may have made a mistake

3 myself in one of my statements. You said that if you are going to make a

4 correction, you're making a correction because this has become necessary,

5 as a consequence of problems in translation and interpretation, and not

6 because you were mistaken. And Mr. Ackerman is trying to prove you wrong.

7 He's trying to explain that this was not the corrections that you made and

8 that you continue making are not necessarily all of them tied up to

9 mistakes in interpretation or errors in interpretation, but also mistakes

10 that -- or corrections that have become necessary because you realise that

11 you may have said something which was not correct or precise after all.

12 So if that is the case, just say so. I mean, you're not under

13 trial here.

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, then there was -- we

15 were clearly talking at cross-purposes. We can move paragraph by

16 paragraph and I will tell you where perhaps I went wrong and where the

17 interpreter went wrong, perhaps. But once again, and I underlined the

18 interpreter did not commit all these errors. I mean, when I read it, I

19 realised that things didn't fit, and that is when I made my corrections.

20 But we go through this item by item and tell you where I changed it, when

21 I realised that I had been wrong, and also say where the interpreters had

22 gone wrong. And it is, of course, up to you to see whether that is

23 how -- that that is so.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: It's clearer now.

25 Mr. Ackerman, please proceed.

Page 18339


2 Q. Your first statement, on page 8, sir, and we're just moving

3 forward in time. I mean, you've -- your resistance, I believe, has

4 started now. And what you say then on -- in that first paragraph on page

5 8 is this: "We had control over all the high ground on the hills and were

6 basically looking down on the Serbs in the municipality." True?

7 A. Yes, sir, that was our position.

8 Q. You then talked about a skirmish, you called it the first skirmish

9 and exchange of gunfire between the resistance and the Serbs. And I want

10 again, just because it's important to be precise here, I think, I want to

11 quote what you said in your first statement: "To the best of my

12 recollection, the first skirmish and exchange of gunfire between the

13 resistance and the Serbs occurred in the morning of 25 June 1992. The

14 resistance was in Kukavice, and I learned that a few Serb soldiers were

15 killed in this action."

16 The reason for the action was that several young men from Kotor

17 and Kukavice had gone back to their homes overnight and had been

18 discovered by Serbs when they were departing in the morning to return back

19 to Ravne. This action was not an attack organised by the resistance, but

20 it just happened when they came into contact with each other."

21 Now, that's what you said in your first statement. In your second

22 statement, on page 7, talking about the nature of your position of

23 leadership, what you said was this: "Their instructions," page 7, "were

24 to conduct defensive operations only in their respective villages. There

25 was never any plan to launch an offensive against the Serb forces. The

Page 18340

1 plan was only to defend our homes and population."

2 And then again talking about this situation in Kukavice on 25 June

3 1992, in your second statement, you said this: "Several of the men under

4 my command were from the village of Kukavice. This night they went to

5 check on their houses and families. When they were coming back the

6 following morning, they came across a patrol of Serb soldiers. I was not

7 present, so I don't know what actually happened, but there was a

8 confrontation and some Serb soldiers were killed."

9 Then we finally get to your third statement, on page 3, referring

10 again to that matter. You say: "These soldiers were killed by a group of

11 people from Kukavice. This happened on 25 June 1992. The group that was

12 involved in the killing of Serbs was not under my command. I did not see

13 the incident. I learned of it from one of the survivors from Kukavice."

14 So in your second statement, they were under your command; in your

15 third statement they were not under your command. Which was it? Were

16 they under your command or weren't they?

17 A. It is true that they were under my command. That's the truth of

18 it.

19 Q. So when that third statement says that they were not under your

20 command, did you say that or were you misquoted. Was it a translation

21 error?

22 A. Well, I don't know how that came about, but what I meant to say

23 was that this had not been planned. But I certainly couldn't have said

24 that they were not under my command if they were.

25 Q. So could it have been that what you meant to say was what they

Page 18341

1 did, they did not by a command from you but on their own?

2 A. Yes, they were under my command, but I was against them going to

3 check on their houses and homes, for reasons of their own personal safety,

4 and to keep their families out of trouble. I was against them going. But

5 they went without informing me. I was against that, and they were under

6 my command, yes.

7 Q. All right. And so things were happening around Kotor Varos among

8 these 300 to 400 men that were under your command that you really had no

9 control over at times; is that a fair statement?

10 A. Yes, Your Honours. We're talking about a considerable number of

11 people here. I can't always control all of them, because they are not

12 staying put in one place, all of them, all the time. They're deployed

13 along the lines of defence and they have their spare time, their free

14 time. There's no way for me to monitor their movements or send people

15 after them to monitor them. It's down to their consciences to decide

16 where they would spend their spare time and what they would do in their

17 own spare time.

18 Q. I want to go -- I understand that. I want to go now to Vecici and

19 what you said in your first statement about Vecici. You first said it was

20 only one village in a large area controlled by the resistance, and that's

21 a true statement, isn't it?

22 A. My apologies, Your Honours. Can I have the question again put

23 more specifically, if possible, because I don't think I understood it.

24 Q. In your first statement, we're on page 9, you begin talking about

25 Vecici, and you say: "The village of Vecici was only one village in a

Page 18342












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13 English transcripts.













Page 18343

1 large area controlled by the resistance." My question is: Is that a

2 true statement?

3 A. Yes. Yes, Your Honours, that's true.

4 Q. And then you talk about how all Serb attention was focused on

5 Vecici and perceived by the Serbs to be a resistance stronghold; true?

6 A. Yes, Your Honours, that is also true.

7 Q. And you tell that the Serbs actually shelled that village almost

8 daily, from June through October of 1992, for almost a five-month period;

9 correct?

10 A. That's true. Not almost; every day.

11 Q. There were even attacks -- air attacks in June with napalm and

12 cluster bombs on the village of Vecici; true?

13 A. Yes, Your Honours, that is also true.

14 Q. And in spite of all that, that village held out and did not

15 surrender?

16 A. Yes. Yes. Am I supposed to answer? Yes, the village did not

17 surrender, and it survived until the last day.

18 Q. And these are people who you've described as being very lightly

19 armed, with very little ammunition, holding out for five months against

20 the vaunted professional army of Republika Srpska; correct?

21 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's correct. Resistance was put up, but in

22 the meantime, they would arm themselves. Every Serb attack that they

23 repelled, they would take some of these Serb weapons that had been taken,

24 and day in and day out the number of weapons they had was increasing.

25 Q. And finally, with regard to your first statement to the

Page 18344

1 Prosecutor, I now have made it to the last paragraph. In the last

2 paragraph, you tell us that: "Stojan Zupljanin, as head of the CSB in

3 Banja Luka, is directly responsible for the actions conducted in Kotor

4 Varos." Do you still maintain that position?

5 A. Yes, Your Honours, I maintain that position. I do have arguments

6 to back that position up.

7 Q. I want to talk to you just a second about -- I think you're going

8 to agree with me this must be another translation error. In your first

9 statement you didn't mention anything about a Crisis Staff in Kotor

10 Varos. It came up first in your second statement, at page 4. That was

11 the statement of 12 October of 2000. And on page 4 of that statement,

12 you're reported to have said -- it's right at the bottom in the English

13 version: "I'm not sure if Kotor Varos activated a Crisis Staff. They may

14 have when the war in Croatia broke out." And then in your third

15 statement, on page 2, you said that Kotor Varos definitely had a Crisis

16 Staff, and no question in your mind about that. And my question is: Is

17 that some kind of a mistake in your second statement, where you say you're

18 not sure if Kotor Varos activated a Crisis Staff?

19 A. Your Honours, I am certain that they did have a Crisis Staff. I

20 just don't know in which period of time exactly it was activated.

21 Q. Yes, I understand that that's your position, but that wasn't my

22 question. My question was: Is that some kind of an error when it appears

23 in your second statement that you say you weren't sure that they had

24 activated a Crisis Staff? Was that your error or was that a translation

25 error?

Page 18345

1 A. Let's say it was mine.

2 Q. Is that just, you know, flip a coin and I'll pick one? Today I'll

3 say it was my error?

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't answer that question.

5 Next question, Mr. Ackerman.


7 Q. In your testimony yesterday - and I'm at page 14, line 6 - you're

8 asked about joining the SDA party, and the answer you gave was this: "Let

9 me tell you: I joined them later, after I returned from the field in

10 Croatia. And I think that in late 1991 or perhaps early 1992, they

11 already had premises in the same place." My question is: What do you

12 mean "the field in Croatia," "returned from the field in Croatia"? What

13 does that mean?

14 A. Your Honours, we are people in the construction business, so every

15 time we leave our municipality, we say that we go away on business, or we

16 are in the field. My company, Kotor Varos, was a partner of Zagreb's

17 Industrogradnja. We had construction underway in Istria, in Puja, in

18 Medulin, in Rovinj, and so on and so forth.

19 Q. I was pretty sure that's what you meant. I just wanted to make

20 sure.

21 At page 18, line 16, you're responding to a question from

22 Ms. Korner about communicating with the Ministry of the Interior in

23 Sarajevo, and your inability to communicate directly with Sarajevo because

24 everything had to go through the CSB in Banja Luka. Do you recall that

25 testimony?

Page 18346

1 A. Yes, Your Honours, I do.

2 Q. Now, that wasn't something unusual. That was the chain of command

3 of the Ministry of the Interior for a very long time, wasn't it? That's

4 the way it always had worked, or at least for a long period?

5 A. Yes, Your Honours, that's the procedure, and that's how our police

6 station at Kotor Varos communicates with Sarajevo. We don't take the

7 direct route. First it's us, then the CSB in Banja Luka, and then

8 Sarajevo, and then feedback from Sarajevo, the republican station, and

9 then it reaches the station in Kotor Varos. That's for as long as it

10 worked. But at one point communication with Sarajevo was interrupted and

11 instructions from Sarajevo were no longer valid and no longer applied to

12 the chief of the CSB in Banja Luka.

13 Q. But that had been the method of communication of every local

14 police station in Bosnia-Herzegovina for a significant period of time, way

15 before the war. Communications were from the local police station through

16 the regional police, finally to the MUP in Sarajevo. That was the chain

17 of command that was in place, wasn't it?

18 A. Yes, Your Honours. That's correct. That was the chain of command

19 under the law.

20 Q. Yes. You talked, on page 20 of your testimony yesterday, about

21 television programmes, and at one point that you were no longer able to

22 receive television broadcasts from Sarajevo. I take it that when you

23 could no longer watch Sarajevo TV, that you could still watch TV from

24 Zagreb; correct?

25 A. You are correct. I could watch certain programmes from Zagreb.

Page 18347

1 They must have had very strong transmitters. So I could watch certain

2 programmes, but it really very much depended on the specific area that you

3 were in.

4 Q. Okay. On page 21 of your testimony, you were asked this question,

5 line 1: "Did you, during the period between January and June of 1992,

6 ever see Radoslav Brdjanin on television?" You said that you had, and

7 then you were asked: "Can you remember specifically any of the things

8 that he said on television?" And this is the answer you gave: "He said

9 that Serb people needed it and that the Serb people had to do it and that

10 the Autonomous Region of Bosanska Krajina would be established and that it

11 would be an integral part of Republika Srpska, and that all Serbs had to

12 live in one state. That was the gist of it." Do you recall that?

13 A. Yes, Your Honours, I do. It was always pointed out how the Serb

14 people were in jeopardy and that they had to stay in Yugoslavia, and so on

15 and so forth.

16 Q. Now, that television appearance that you saw by Mr. Brdjanin, when

17 he's speaking about the proposed establishment of the Autonomous Region of

18 Bosanska Krajina had to have happened in 1991, since the Autonomous Region

19 of Bosanska Krajina was established in September of 1991. That makes

20 sense, doesn't it?

21 A. I'm not sure I referred to a specific date. I'm not sure about

22 this. But certainly it was proclaimed, it had been prepared and then it

23 was activated whenever it needed to be activated.

24 Q. I understand. I don't want to give you the impression that I'm

25 suggesting that you talked about a specific date. You were talking about

Page 18348












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13 English transcripts.













Page 18349

1 a specific appearance of Mr. Brdjanin on television that you remember

2 seeing, and what I'm saying to you is this: He said that the Autonomous

3 Region of Bosanska Krajina would be established. And what I get from that

4 is he's talking about something that's going to happen in the future. And

5 if it's the case that the Autonomous Region of Krajina was established in

6 September of 1991, then this appearance had to have been before that.

7 That's my point. And I think you agree with me.

8 A. Yes, Your Honours, of course. It had to be before that.

9 Q. Now, it may be that you didn't say everything you wanted to say

10 about this, or that we misunderstood in some way. But at page 30, in line

11 17, Ms. Korner was asking you about patrols that were set up in Kotor

12 Varos, and you gave some examples, and I think the second example you gave

13 was this: First you said: "Every single evening, in the late hours of

14 the evening, there was a van, a rather large van that could hold between

15 10 and 15 police officers or uniformed persons." And then you

16 said: "Almost every night," rather than every single night, "the van made

17 the rounds of certain locations in the town, and in the local communes of

18 the Kotor Varos municipality. The van was carrying Serbs and the

19 commander was Sasa Petrovic, who was always in that van, and they would

20 make the rounds of certain points in town. And this was also very

21 irritating for the citizens." I'm just wondering, if all that was going

22 on was a bunch of Serb police officers riding around in a van, why did

23 that irritate anybody?

24 A. It irritated people because mixed police patrols had been

25 approved, and they were making the rounds, and that was enough. There was

Page 18350

1 no need for any other units to be patrolling the town. Just on whose

2 orders it was, it was very unclear. Of course it irritated people. We

3 had mixed patrols, and our reserve forces were mixed in terms of their

4 ethnic make-up: Serbs, Muslims, and Croats alike were members of those

5 patrols. And now it was the Bosniaks and Croats, then there would have

6 been more people added to the guards. And if those were Serbs, then it

7 would be Serbs. There was no need for further patrols. We already had

8 patrols making the rounds that had been approved by the municipal

9 authorities.

10 Q. All right. Thank you. I want to go now to page 38 of yesterday's

11 testimony, and we start at line 5. You were asked if the Municipal

12 Assembly had any authority to issue instructions to the police, and your

13 answer was: "No. No. Under normal circumstances, that is, in peacetime,

14 the interior affairs law, because we have one such, the Municipal Assembly

15 could propose certain amendments or perhaps if problems arose, if things

16 happened, then they could submit their own proposals, suggestions, and

17 help us to overcome such problems in peacetime."

18 If I understand that answer properly, you're saying that the

19 Municipal Assembly had no authority to issue instructions to the police

20 because of the law on interior affairs, that they could make suggestions,

21 that they could make proposals, but they could not order. That's correct,

22 isn't it?

23 A. Yes, that's correct, Your Honours.

24 Q. And in the process of becoming a police officer, you told us that

25 you had to take an exam and that you had to, I assume, study for that

Page 18351

1 exam. And one of the things you had to become familiar with was the law

2 on interior affairs; wasn't it?

3 A. Let me tell you: This exam did not entail the law on internal

4 affairs, but it was for my own professional reasons, for my job, that I

5 looked into it. I wanted to see what my authority was, what I was

6 entitled to do.

7 Q. That's fair. And in looking into the law on internal affairs, you

8 learned that the chain of command of the Ministry of the Interior was from

9 the local police, through the regional CSBs, to the MUP in Sarajevo at

10 that time, and that the only civilian authority in that chain of command

11 was at the very top, in Sarajevo; correct?

12 A. Yes, that's correct.

13 Q. Now, can you tell us where it is in that law on internal affairs

14 that that situation is any different in wartime or emergency situations?

15 Where in the law on interior affairs does it say that civilians can issue

16 orders to the police in emergency or wartime situations? And I think the

17 answer is that it doesn't say that; isn't that true?

18 A. There may be a misunderstanding here. The law is clear and

19 unambiguous. It only applies to normal situations, when there is no war.

20 If there is a state of emergency, a different set of laws apply.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated] That's enough, I think.

22 Next question.

23 Mr. Ackerman --

24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Your Honour, please.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: I have a meeting in my chambers, and we need to be

Page 18352

1 there at 12.30.

2 MR. ACKERMAN: This is a good time.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Could I ask you to stop here?


5 JUDGE AGIUS: We will resume in 25 minutes from now.

6 --- Recess taken at 12.26 p.m.

7 --- On resuming at 12.58 p.m.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Ackerman.

9 MR. ACKERMAN: Thank you, Your Honour.

10 Q. I'm now going to page 40, line 3 of your testimony yesterday, and

11 it's just an example of a question I want to ask you. In the process of

12 answering the question you were asked, your answer, at line 3, begins

13 with: "I can claim under full responsibility ..." And then just a little

14 bit later, you say: "Once again, I say under full responsibility." And

15 then: "I'm repeating under full responsibility." What is it you mean

16 when you say "under full responsibility"? What does that mean to you?

17 A. Nothing special, Your Honours. It's a word which means -- one

18 doesn't mean anything. I might have repeated it twice, but it has the

19 same meaning.

20 Q. Well, I think maybe in your testimony you used it as many as 10 or

21 12 times, and I haven't counted them, so I don't know. But you seem to

22 use that phrase when you want us to understand that you are absolutely

23 telling the truth. Am I wrong about that?

24 A. You're right. Your Honours, when I am absolutely sure about

25 something and what I know, then I emphasise that.

Page 18353

1 Q. I want you to now look at a document. It's P150. This is a

2 document signed by the infamous Milos, dated 20 May 1992. It says:

3 "According to information which has been verified, during yesterday and

4 last night," and that would have been the 19th of May, I take it, "Serbian

5 citizens continued to move out of Vrbanjci, Kotor Varos municipality, and

6 several other villages in this area. The majority of refugees have sought

7 sanctuary around Celinac, Maslovare, and neighbouring villages with a

8 Serbian population. At the same time, it was noted that citizens of other

9 nationalities were moving out of these areas." And I want to stop there

10 and ask you if you know anything at all about what's being reported there,

11 anything at all about Serbian citizens leaving the area and going to

12 Celinac and Maslovare and so forth.

13 A. I repeat: I am a person who at that time held one of the

14 executive offices in the municipality, so this had to be discussed by

15 everybody in power. By all the authorities in my municipality.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think you understood the question.

17 Mr. Ackerman read out to you from the report by a certain Milos, dated

18 20th May, which states that Serbian citizens continued to move out of

19 Vrbanjci, Kotor Varos municipality, and several other villages in this

20 area. What he wants to know is whether you know anything about what is

21 reported by Milos and which was read out to you. In other words, whether

22 you know anything at all about these Serbian citizens leaving the area and

23 going to Celinac and Maslovare, at about the 19th of May, 1992. This is

24 supposed to have happened on that day, during the day of the 19th and the

25 night between the 19th and the 20th of May.

Page 18354

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I claim under full responsibility

2 that A, I do not know; and B, I'm rather sure that there were no such

3 phenomena there at that time, at that time or later.


5 Q. The next part of that document says this: "A gathering of

6 patriotically inclined citizens was noticed in the Maslovare area. They

7 demanded weapons and to join military formations in order to oppose the

8 extremists in the Vrbanjci and Kotor Varos area." Do you know anything

9 about that happening around the 20th of May?

10 A. No, Your Honours. I am not aware of that.

11 Q. All right. That's all I have with regard to that document. Thank

12 you.

13 In your testimony at page 44, yesterday, on line 22, you started

14 talking about the availability of weapons in Kotor Varos, and you --

15 basically the difficulty of coming by a weapon in Kotor Varos during these

16 early days of 1992. Your exact language, beginning at line 22, was: "It

17 wasn't easy to come by a weapon. I have to tell you, in Kotor Varos,

18 somebody else, you couldn't do it. Perhaps you could smuggle a rifle or

19 two in your car, but to come by any major weapons, there was no way you

20 could get into Kotor Varos bringing those," and so forth.

21 Did you have any indication that persons might have been coming

22 from other areas in the vicinity to actually buy weapons in Kotor Varos?

23 Did you ever notice that or hear anything about that?

24 A. No, Your Honours. Weapons were bought in Banja Luka as a rule,

25 because there was a significant concentration of weapons. And in Croatia,

Page 18355

1 when the war stopped. And in the police, we were aware of this

2 phenomenon, because it happened often that at a checkpoint, when a check

3 would be carried out, that in a small truck or a car, one would find two

4 or three rifles, and we knew about that because these things were

5 happening at the time.

6 Q. So I think your answer is that you don't have any information

7 indicating people were coming from outside Kotor Varos to buy weapons

8 there. True?

9 A. Yes. I don't know about any such instance.

10 Q. In your testimony yesterday, at pages 68 and 69, you were asked

11 about the killing of Lieutenant Colonel Stevilovic and others in an

12 ambush, and you told us that this action was conducted by a person by the

13 name of Stipo Maric; correct?

14 A. Yes, Your Honours. That is correct. And others too. I don't

15 know how many of them. But he wasn't alone.

16 Q. And Stipo Maric was a Muslim; correct?

17 A. No. Stipo Maric is a Catholic from Kotor Varos.

18 Q. Okay. And was he -- was he one of the members of your resistance

19 group?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. And you only learned about this two or three days after it had

22 happened, I guess in a conversation you had with Stipo Maric; correct?

23 A. Yes, Your Honours. He told me himself. They were coming back.

24 There was a group of them, a group of men were -- and he -- in Vecici, and

25 he was on his way back, and it was along that route that it happened.

Page 18356

1 Q. And in the course of your testimony yesterday, you described him

2 as a good man.

3 A. Yes. He was a very good man, but he was quite restless, could

4 easily get into mischief.

5 Q. And some of the mischief he got into was ambushing Lieutenant

6 Stevilovic and his group and killing them; right? Is that correct?

7 MS. KORNER: That's really not a question again. It's a comment.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated] Yes. Ms. Korner's

9 objection is sustained.

10 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for His Honour, please.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Korner's objection is sustained, Mr. Ackerman.

12 I didn't stop you, but I was expecting Ms. Korner to stand up.

13 Thank you, Ms. Korner.


15 Q. I want you to look now at Exhibit P2001. You were shown this

16 document yesterday and directed to paragraph 3, where the report talks

17 about a sabotage attack on a minibus in the area of Kotor Varos, in which

18 13 of our soldiers, meaning Serb soldiers, were killed. And when you were

19 asked about this yesterday, you said, and I'm going to quote your

20 testimony: "Your Honours, I believe this refers to attacks carried out by

21 a local group from --" and the transcript says "very muchic," but I think

22 what you said was Vecici, "who can -- carried out reconnaissance and

23 monitored the movements of those vehicles. They knew that another unit

24 was taking over shift and they knew that they were soldiers on that

25 minibus, not civilians. That's at least what I heard later. And that's

Page 18357

1 when and where the action was carried out, in the Vrbanjci area. That's

2 my opinion. I believe that's what it refers to." Correct?

3 A. Yes, Your Honours. Correct. You are right.

4 Q. And you're saying that -- apparently you're saying that they were

5 certain that when they ambushed this minibus, that it contained only

6 soldiers and no civilians; correct?

7 A. Yes, Your Honours. That is what I was told by people from Vecici,

8 and that is what later on the media carried.

9 Q. I'd like you now to look at P2448 -- 2248. I'm sorry. I said the

10 wrong number. I apologise.

11 This obviously is not the document I was interested in, Your

12 Honours, so I think we can talk about it without looking at the document.

13 You were shown a document yesterday that said something about

14 negotiations going on regarding, I think it was a surrender and a

15 transport of people out of the area, and you said that these were

16 negotiations that you knew nothing about. Do you know what I'm referring

17 to?

18 A. Your Honours, you have to be concrete. Do you mean the

19 negotiations organised by local group from the village of Hadrovci or do I

20 mean the negotiations which took -- the official ones which took place in

21 October with Serb authorities?

22 Q. I've found it. I've found it. It's the 71st meeting of the War

23 Presidency on 3 September, and you've got it there. It's item number 2.

24 "Tepic briefed the War Presidency on the contact made by representatives

25 of the village of Hadrovci with the command of the company in Zagoni

Page 18358

1 [phoen] who wanted to hand over weapons for guarantee of their safety."

2 That's the issue I'm asking you about. And even though you were known as

3 the commander of the resistance forces, you knew nothing about those

4 negotiations, did you?

5 A. Yes. Unfortunately, I didn't know it. There were always people

6 who acted beyond a doubt by the decision of a majority, and so this group

7 too tried to negotiate.

8 Q. What you told the Trial Chamber about that on page 79, line 4,

9 was, beginning at line 4 -- actually, line 5. "This is proof that I had

10 no control over the whole territory." Correct?

11 A. You shouldn't take me literally. The whole territory. This was

12 territory which we held too. Let's make that clear. But I couldn't

13 control every individual man or smaller -- or every small group. That is

14 what I meant.

15 Q. I understood that's what you meant and that's the point I was

16 trying to make.

17 I want to talk to you now very briefly about Mr. Brdjanin. In

18 your first statement that we've looked at a lot today, Mr. Brdjanin was

19 not mentioned in that statement at all, was he?

20 A. I suppose the investigator didn't ask me about that then.

21 Q. Well, I understand that that may have been the case. My only

22 question was he wasn't mentioned in that statement, and I think you agree

23 with that.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: It's a fact, Mr. Ackerman. Let's move --

25 MR. ACKERMAN: That's fine, sir.

Page 18359

1 Q. The second statement, and this is the second statement that you

2 were requested to come make by the Office of the Prosecutor. And I take

3 it that that was the first time anyone ever asked you about Brdjanin from

4 the Office of the Prosecutor. Is that a fair statement?

5 A. As far as I can remember, during the first interview, nobody asked

6 me that. Had anyone asked me that, then of course it would have figured

7 in my statement. Of course I would have said it.

8 Q. I'm talking now about the second statement, and I think that was

9 the first time you were asked about Brdjanin. I just want to point out

10 what it was you said when asked about Brdjanin. You said: "I remember

11 that one time on Banja Luka television in 1991," we talked about this

12 earlier today, "in 1991 Radoslav Brdjanin said on TV that the Autonomous

13 Region of Krajina should be formed and be separated from the rest of

14 Bosnia and that new Serbian municipalities should be formed." Now, that's

15 the same TV interview that you talked about in your testimony yesterday

16 about seeing; isn't it?

17 A. Yes. Well, I watched it several times, but I can't remember

18 various statements and conversations and so on. But I'm sure about that

19 part in the statement.

20 Q. Then on 10 March 1991 [sic], you again appeared to make another

21 statement, at the request of the Office of the Prosecutor. They wanted to

22 talk to you some more?

23 MS. KORNER: Not 1991.

24 MR. ACKERMAN: 2001.

25 Q. 10 March 2001. And again, you were asked about Mr. Brdjanin. Do

Page 18360

1 you remember that?

2 A. Yes, Your Honours, I remember it.

3 Q. And this time, you remembered some more. You remembered that you

4 had seen Mr. Brdjanin several times in Banja Luka?

5 A. Yes, Your Honours.

6 Q. You said that you heard him say that Serbs have to create the

7 Bosnian Krajina for political and economic reasons. I assume that again

8 is referring to that statement you saw in 1991.

9 A. Yes, that is what it refers to.

10 Q. And then you said you did not hear him make any derogatory

11 comments against Muslims and Croats, although you had heard that from

12 others. Is that fair?

13 A. Yes, it is. I cannot say what I didn't hear. But I know

14 concretely when he spoke about mixed marriages, how it will be resolved in

15 Banja Luka, because Banja Luka is a town with a large number of mixed

16 marriages, and so on and so forth. But I'd rather not comment on what I

17 did not hear.

18 Q. All right. Now I'd like you to look at the new document that you

19 were shown this morning. It's P2329, please.

20 Now, this document you talked about this morning, dated 27 October

21 1993, is a criminal report. It says that it's filed against -- and then

22 lists a number of people. And item number 27 refers to you; correct?

23 A. Yes, correct, Your Honours.

24 Q. Then it goes on to talk about civilians being killed during armed

25 attacks between 24 July and 2 November of 1992. And I want to ask you to

Page 18361

1 go to that section of the report. After number 29, it says: "There are

2 reasonable grounds to suspect that during armed clashes between 24 July

3 and 2 November --" and we understand that you left in October "as members

4 of Muslim military formations, they look the lives of civilians." And it

5 lists four people there, Tihomir Vasiljevic, Nedjeljko Popovic,

6 Boro Lugic, and Nenad Novic. Do you know anything about the death of any

7 of these four people?

8 A. I didn't know that, and I do not think they are civilians. They

9 are captured members of the Serb forces who had been taking part in the

10 attacks. I am positive about that.

11 Q. You're positive that these four people, Vasiljevic, Popovic,

12 Lugic, and Novic were captured by Muslim forces?

13 A. Yes. That's the information I had when the attack took place,

14 that these people were captured.

15 Q. And then apparently killed?

16 A. I don't know about them being killed. I'm not sure. But I know

17 that they were transferred from that area into the village of Vecici

18 alive, in order to reap the corn and stop -- and they asked the Serbs to

19 stop shooting so that they could carry out the harvest.

20 Q. Let me ask you about -- there's now another person listed who it

21 says was wounded, Dusan Pavlovic. Is he also one of those people?

22 A. I'm not aware of that, Your Honours. I know neither the name nor

23 the incident discussed here.

24 Q. All right. And then finally there's a list of five people that

25 said they were unlawfully deprived of their freedom and imprisoned in a

Page 18362

1 prison in Vecici, where they were tortured and injured, with great

2 suffering inflicted on them. And their names are Milovan Obradovic,

3 Milenko Djuric, Drasko Sakane, Nedjeljko Djukic and Jelenko Tepic. Do you

4 know what happened to any of those five people?

5 A. Your Honours, I don't know about that. I know that while they

6 were in Vecici, once when I was in Vecici too, I talked to the man who was

7 in charge of guarding those people and I told him expressly not to

8 maltreat those prisoners, to treat them in a humane way and to wait until

9 an exchange could be organised. Now, later, when they withdrew from

10 Vecici, when they stayed behind us, as for that period, I really can't

11 tell you anything about that, because I don't know what happened

12 throughout that period.

13 Q. And I take it you would concede that they may have been mistreated

14 in spite of your order; that could have happened, couldn't it?

15 A. Yes, you're right, naturally. Real soldiers, proper soldiers,

16 would never touch a prisoner. But you always had people like that who

17 mistreated prisoners, who tried to mistreat everyone they could. There

18 were always people like that around. That's understood.

19 Q. Sir, I want to thank you for making an effort to answer my

20 questions. Thank you for coming and sharing what you did with us. And I

21 wish you a safe journey back home. Thank you so much.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Korner, re-examination?

23 MS. KORNER: Yes, just one question, please, Your Honour.

24 Re-examined by Ms. Korner:

25 Q. Mr. Sadikovic, it was suggested to you by Mr. Ackerman, shortly

Page 18363

1 before the last break, that -- he put to you: "Can you tell us where it

2 is in that law on internal affairs that the situation is any different in

3 wartime or emergency situations? Where in the law on interior affairs

4 does it say that civilians can issue orders to the police in emergency or

5 wartime situations? And I think the answer is that it doesn't say that;

6 isn't that true?" I'd like you to have a look now at a copy of the law on

7 internal affairs for the Republika Srpska published in the gazette.

8 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, we haven't copied this, because I

9 wasn't expecting to have to do this but we will and --

10 Q. Could you turn, please, to Article 46?

11 JUDGE AGIUS: I can appreciate that. No one was expecting it.

12 MR. ACKERMAN: Can we get a copy on the ELMO or anything?

13 MS. KORNER: No, I've only got one -- oh, yes, we can. I'll put

14 my copy on the ELMO and then we can read.

15 Q. Does that say: "When executing duties relating to the protection

16 of constitutional order, lives and personal security of citizens,

17 protection of material assets from destruction, damage, or theft,

18 maintenance of law and order, traffic safety, cases of general emergency

19 caused by natural disasters, outbreaks of epidemic, the minister, an

20 official authorised by the minister, or other authorised officials may, in

21 cases of emergency, issue orders to citizens, companies, and other legal

22 entities."

23 Can I just ask, Mr. Sadikovic, is that what you were thinking of

24 when you gave that reply?

25 A. Yes, Your Honours. That's precisely the kind of situation that I

Page 18364

1 was referring to, state of emergency.

2 Q. Yes, thank you, Mr. Sadikovic. That's all I ask in

3 re-examination, Your Honour?

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner.

5 MS. KORNER: Can I make it an exhibit and I'll provide copies.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. All right.

7 MS. KORNER: So that would be Exhibit P2330.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. P2330. Thank you.

9 Mr. Sadikovic, we've got a few questions for you. Judge Janu is

10 going to start.

11 Judge Janu.

12 Questioned by the Court:

13 JUDGE JANU: Mr. Sadikovic, I would like to discuss with you two

14 persons you mentioned in your testimony, and in your statements as well.

15 First one is Slobodan Zupljanin, and second one is Anto Mandic.

16 First question goes to Slobodan Zupljanin. I would like to take

17 you back to that meeting which was discussed here by Mr. Ackerman, that he

18 wanted you to stay on with the police force as a Muslim police officer.

19 He wanted you to wear new insignia and to take new oath, and also he

20 wanted you to get your people to surrender their weapons. And he gave you

21 seven days for decision. And he also told you that you were to do as you

22 were told if you wanted to be -- if you wanted to save your people.

23 I think you will agree with me that he imposed great

24 responsibility on you, telling you that you should obey or otherwise you

25 put your people into the risk. In your testimony, you mentioned that

Page 18365

1 Anto Mandic was president of the Kotor Varos municipality and also your

2 friend. I suppose he was a Serb person, looking at his name, but I would

3 like you to clarify this for me. And my question is -- and you said you

4 discussed this meeting with Zupljanin with Anto Mandic. So my question

5 is: What was the subject of the discussion? What did he advise you to

6 do, if he gave you any advice? That's my first question.

7 A. Your Honours, he was the president of the municipality, so I

8 informed him about that. It was my duty. But he was not the only person

9 I informed about this. I informed my own president, Fikret Djikic. I

10 informed him about the meeting and the discussion we had there. He

11 couldn't give any answer or instructions. He just told me that he too had

12 seen Stojan Zupljanin and talked to him, and that the subject of their

13 talk was the same, the surrendering of weapons, staying in power, and so

14 on and so forth. He didn't go into much detail, but it seemed that they

15 had had more or less the same kind of conversation that we had had.

16 Mr. Mandic is a Catholic. He's a Croat. He's not a Serb. By way

17 of clarification.

18 JUDGE JANU: And my second question is: On what arguments do you

19 build the responsibility of Mr. Zupljanin? Because you told us that you

20 blame him for what happened in municipality of Kotor Varos. So I would

21 like to know your arguments on which you build this conclusion of yours.

22 A. Yes. That's one of the arguments, Your Honours. The special unit

23 from Banja Luka could not be moved and could not go to Kotor Varos if this

24 hadn't been ordered by Stojan Zupljanin. He was the main man of the

25 police in the area. He had to bear the responsibility. Because all the

Page 18366

1 orders were given by him, in cooperation with the Crisis Staff of the

2 municipality. Every single order, every single attack carried out by the

3 special unit in Kotor Varos and the other municipalities, none of that

4 would have been possible without express orders by Mr. Zupljanin, orders

5 in writing even.

6 JUDGE JANU: Thank you.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Judge Taya, from Japan, would like to put some

8 questions to you, sir.

9 JUDGE TAYA: You testified that you entered employment with the

10 Kotor Varos police force in September 1991. Concerning to this

11 employment, you said in your statement number 1 that this employment was a

12 political appointment. Does that mean that there was the commendation

13 from SDA for your appointment? What does it mean exactly?

14 A. Your Honours, allow me to clarify this. The 1990 elections were

15 held, legal elections. We know who won the elections. It was the SDA.

16 The third place party in my own municipality, Kotor Varos. So after the

17 regular election, when power was being handed over in order to balance out

18 the ethnic make-up and structure, which was never properly balanced up to

19 that point, the SDA, as the legal party of the Bosniak people, had the

20 right to nominate candidates. I was not the sole candidate. There were

21 at least three candidates from the Muslim ethnic group. But then that --

22 there is a further procedure. The SDA makes a nomination. This must go

23 through the Executive Board of our municipality. Then the proposal is

24 forwarded on to Sarajevo, and Sarajevo makes the final decision on

25 appointments, whether it was myself or one of the other -- the remaining

Page 18367

1 two candidates. That's what the procedure was like, and the procedure in

2 this case was closely followed.

3 JUDGE TAYA: According to you, what is the reason why you were

4 chosen as a political appointee at that time?

5 A. Well, probably my colleagues from the party knew me. They knew

6 about my family background, about my education and my manners. They knew

7 that I had had the experience of living in a big city, Sarajevo. That's

8 where I studied. They knew that I was a person who had a wider -- a broad

9 view of the world. They knew that I had not been involved previously with

10 police work. But after all, I was not the only one with a more technical

11 background to join the polices forces. But I think we did quite well, all

12 in all, and I think we did our job rather well in the end. So that was

13 probably the reason that my party mates decided to nominate me as the

14 candidate. I was one of the three, I repeat.

15 JUDGE TAYA: Thank you.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. I have just two or three questions. One is:

17 You mentioned in the course of your testimony yesterday, and also

18 somewhere in one of your statements, that, for example, there was an

19 attack on Serdari and the attack was launched by a local group. I take it

20 that this was a local group which was not under your command and over

21 which you did not have any control. Were there any other such local

22 groups operating in the municipality of Kotor Varos which did not form

23 part of your resistance, that you are aware of?

24 A. Your Honours, some of those people were under my control, and some

25 were not, and that was an HVO unit in Dobratici. They arrived in our

Page 18368

1 free territory, and even back then we could tell there would be conflicts

2 caused by the HDZ policies in Bosnia. And they arrived down there to take

3 over command, and they wanted to turn us into the HVO rather than the

4 Territorial Defence of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I would not like to go

5 into any further detail here. We did have our disagreements, but it was

6 fine in the end. However, from that unit, there were a number of members

7 of that unit who were taking part in that particular operation.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: In the second of your statements, that is the one of

9 12th October of the year 2000, you state as follows: "It is my opinion

10 that Stojan Zupljanin would not have conducted combat and police

11 deployments to areas under his command without higher authority. I know

12 that Stojan Zupljanin worked closely with the military commanders of the

13 former JNA in the region, and there was a close link between the police,

14 army, and politicians. All of these three structures were included in all

15 levels of life and decision-making in the region."

16 Do you stand by this statement?

17 A. Yes, Your Honours. I'll stick to that statement.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: When you say that you would not have conducted

19 competent police deployments to the areas under his command, without

20 higher authority, what or which higher authority did you have in mind when

21 you made this statement? What were you referring or who were

22 you referring to? Who would be a higher authority vis-a-vis Zupljanin?

23 A. There may have been a misunderstanding there, a slight one, Your

24 Honours. He had already done that, but he didn't do it of his own

25 initiative, deliberately, or because he thought he was supposed to do it.

Page 18369

1 It had been meticulously planned and predetermined how he was to do it, on

2 which date, and in which neighbourhood. But he too had his own chain of

3 command, control and command. It was no longer the minister in Sarajevo.

4 He had his own minister in Pale, the parallel government that had been

5 established throughout Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is, in Republika Srpska,

6 that they had established. He had his own minister of internal affairs

7 who provided his instructions.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.

9 A. That was the chain of control and command that was used.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: When you say that he worked closely with military

11 commanders of the former JNA in the region, could you indicate who or

12 which military commanders of the former JNA he worked closely with? Any

13 particular name?

14 A. Let me tell you: It's only logical. It was the general from the

15 corps in Banja Luka. That was his level. That's who he talked to and who

16 he made plans with. More specifically, I have proof that when the MUP,

17 Ministry of the Interior of the Autonomous Region of Krajina, when force

18 was demonstrated at the Borac football stadium, we didn't -- or rather,

19 the police knew exactly how many transporters we had, how many automatic

20 rifles. They knew the specific numbers of the weapons that we had. It

21 had all been provided by the JNA, the former JNA at that point. He had

22 been given transporters, the BOVs, the combat armoured vehicles which had

23 been painted from olive-drab into blue, and he obtained all the other

24 weapons that he needed to be prepared for the war.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Who was the general? Can you name him? Of the

Page 18370

1 former JNA?

2 A. Let me tell you: I'm not sure if it was Talic in the early days,

3 or I can't quite remember the general who was there. I'm not sure if I

4 can remember both the first name and last name. I'm not sure if Talic was

5 then the commander of the Banja Luka Corps or was it someone else. I'm

6 not really sure. But I don't think it was Talic back then. Please don't

7 press me on this, because I'm just not sure.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's go into private session for just one final

9 question.

10 [Private session]

11 (Redacted)

12 (Redacted)

13 (Redacted)

14 (Redacted)

15 (Redacted)

16 (Redacted)

17 (Redacted)

18 (Redacted)

19 (Redacted)

20 (Redacted)

21 (Redacted)

22 (Redacted)

23 (Redacted)

24 (Redacted)

25 (Redacted)

Page 18371

1 (Redacted)

2 (Redacted)

3 (Redacted)

4 (Redacted)

5 (Redacted)

6 [Open session]

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Ackerman.

8 MR. ACKERMAN: Your Honour, the transcript issue, page 78, line --

9 beginning at line 7. And it was when I asked him about these persons who

10 are listed in P2329, he said they were made prisoners and taken to

11 Vecici. And were kept there in order to reap the corn. And I'm told that

12 what he said where you see those dashes is that they were actually put on

13 the tractors and basically used as, as I understood it, they were put on

14 the tractors to keep the Serbs from shooting while they were doing the

15 harvest.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Sadikovic, you have heard what Mr. Ackerman has

17 just stated. Do you confirm that that is what you stated earlier on?

18 Because we have it missing from the transcript. Answer yes or no, because

19 we have already gone beyond our time limit.

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's correct. That's what I

21 was told. That was why they had been taken to Vecici, for that reason.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you.

23 That brings your testimony to an end, which basically means that

24 you are now free to go back home. Mr. Usher will accompany you out of

25 this courtroom, and other officials of this Tribunal will assist you to

Page 18372

1 make it easy for you to return back home at the earliest possible time.

2 On my part, on behalf of Judge Taya, Judge Janu, I should like to thank

3 you for having come over here, and on behalf of everyone, I would like to

4 wish you a safe journey back home, and happy birthday too.

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honours.

6 I wish you every luck in your further work.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. We can adjourn.

8 MS. KORNER: Just before we do adjourn, Your Honour, I know it's

9 running over time slightly.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: How long will this take?

11 MS. KORNER: Two minutes.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. I think -- two minutes. All

13 right.

14 MS. KORNER: It's simply this.

15 [The witness withdrew]

16 MS. KORNER: We're talking it from discussions yesterday and

17 discussions I've had with Mr. Ackerman that Mr. Treanor will not be

18 cross-examined when he gives evidence next week, and Mr. Brown when he

19 gives evidence the week after. Accordingly, we're allowing one day for

20 each of these witnesses in chief, and we're moving witnesses up at speed.

21 Your Honour, any witness lists Your Honours may have had, or indeed

22 Mr. Ackerman, are now moot.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: You can update us on that.

24 MS. KORNER: But I merely point that -- so that is the situation

25 as I understand it, and as we're taking it and any further change is going

Page 18373

1 to cause complete chaos.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: No. Definitely we're not going to make things more

3 difficult for you, Ms. Korner. I mean, it's -- we are not unreasonable.

4 MS. KORNER: And the other thing is Mr. Druzic, he can't come --

5 we will try to get him for this Monday. He has to come back to finish

6 cross-examination. He can come back for the 7th of July, but

7 Mr. Cunningham isn't going to be here, because he's in the States.

8 However, I'm told by Mr. Cunningham there shouldn't be a problem and that

9 somebody else can complete the cross-examination.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: But Monday, who will be coming on Monday.

11 MS. KORNER: This coming Monday?


13 MS. KORNER: The witness who Your Honour has granted delayed

14 disclosure.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. We can adjourn -- do you have any

16 comments on what has been communicated to us by Ms. Korner?

17 MR. ACKERMAN: I think it's all accurate, Your Honour, and with

18 regard to Druzic, I think we can deal with that. If your negotiations

19 were successful at 12.30.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm hopeful. We're hopeful. So I thank you, and we

21 are adjourning until tomorrow. Tomorrow I think you're taking over the

22 witness, no, Mr. Cunningham?

23 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Yes, Your Honour.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. We're moving out. Can I have a

25 word with you, Mr. Ackerman, please.

Page 18374

1 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.53 p.m.,

2 to be reconvened on Friday, the 27th day of

3 June 2003, at 9.00 a.m.