Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 10527

 1                           Monday, 1 February 2010

 2                           [Open session]

 3                           [The accused entered court]

 4                           --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.

 5             JUDGE PARKER:  Good morning.  Are you to take the next witness,

 6     Mr. Popovic?

 7             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.

 8             JUDGE PARKER:  Thank you.  We'll have him then.

 9                           [The witness entered court]

10             JUDGE PARKER:  Good morning.  Would you please read aloud the

11     affirmation that is shown to you on the card.

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will

13     speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

14                           WITNESS:  BRANKO KRGA

15                           [Witness answered through interpreter]

16             JUDGE PARKER:  Thank you.  Please sit down.

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

18             JUDGE PARKER:  Mr. Popovic.

19             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

20                           Examination by Mr. Popovic:

21        Q.   [Interpretation] Good morning, sir.

22        A.   Good morning.

23        Q.   Mr. Krga, before I begin with your examination, you and I speak

24     the same language so I'd like to ask you to make pauses between question

25     and answer and after that to begin your answer.  This way we will enable

Page 10528

 1     the interpreters to do their job.  Could you tell us your full name,

 2     please.

 3        A.   Branko Krga.

 4        Q.   When were you born and where?

 5        A.   I was born on the 18th February, 1945, Daruvar.

 6        Q.   On 13 August 2007, did you give a statement to the Defence team

 7     of General Ojdanic and sign it in your own hand?

 8        A.   Yes.

 9        Q.   Thank you.  Did you testify before this Court in the

10     Milutinovic et al. case on the 3rd and 4th October, 2007?

11        A.   Yes.

12        Q.   In the course of proofing for your testimony today, did you have

13     occasion to read the transcript of your testimony in the Milutinovic

14     case?

15        A.   Yes.

16        Q.   To all the questions asked of you in the Milutinovic case, would

17     you answer in the same way if they were asked of you again today?

18        A.   Yes.

19             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.  May I ask

20     that the statement of Mr. Krga, 006-0037, the testimony of Mr. Krga on

21     the 3rd of August 2007 be admitted.

22             JUDGE PARKER:  You are tendering the statement of the

23     13th of August 2007?

24             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes.  It's not the 3rd August.

25     It's the 13th August 2007.

Page 10529

 1             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

 2             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that would be document

 3     Exhibit D00519.  Thank you, Your Honours.

 4             JUDGE PARKER:  And then the transcript --

 5             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I will ask the Trial Chamber to

 6     admit the transcript of the testimony of Mr. Krga in Milutinovic of the

 7     3rd and 4th October 2007.  We have two versions, one is the public

 8     version the other one is under seal.  The public redacted version is

 9     D001-0178 -- 71.  While the other one is D008-1970.  The number of the

10     redacted version is D011-1871.

11             JUDGE PARKER:  First the redacted version will be received.

12             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00520.

13             JUDGE PARKER:  Then the unredacted version.

14             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00521.

15     Thank you, Your Honour.

16             JUDGE PARKER:  The unredacted version will be under seal.

17             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, correction, Exhibit D00521 is

18     admitted under seal.  Thank you, Your Honours.

19             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I will read a brief

20     summary of Mr. Krga's evidence for today.  In the course of his military

21     service, the witness has occupied various command and staff positions in

22     the Yugoslav People's Army and the Army of Yugoslavia.  In the period

23     from 2002 to 2005, he was Chief of the General Staff of the

24     Army of Yugoslavia.

25             In the course of 1998, the witness was an advisor in the Ministry

Page 10530

 1     of Defence for Defence policies and international military co-operation.

 2     In mid-January 1999, he was appointed chief of the intelligence section

 3     of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia.

 4             Under full responsibility, the witness stated that he was not

 5     aware of the existence of any plan or any specific document or directive

 6     mentioning or referring in any way to expulsion or transfer of

 7     Kosovar Albanians from the Republic of Serbia or from the territory of

 8     Kosova-Metohija.  During his tenure on the General Staff, he never

 9     attended any meeting that would have dealt with any such topic.  The

10     witness will further explain that in the year 1999 during the war when

11     the problem with refugees came to a head, the General Staff of its own

12     initiative issued a proclamation asking Kosovar Albanians not to leave

13     their homes.  He will cite operative data that the administration he was

14     heading in 1999 gathered indicating the abuse of the refugee issue and

15     the efforts made by the KLA to use the movement of refugees to cause a

16     reaction of the international public and an aggression against the FRY.

17             The witness states in his statements that the combat activities

18     were exclusively targeting terrorists and the members of the KLA.  When

19     the aggression of the FRY started, the purpose of combat operations, in

20     addition to fighting terrorists, was to defend the country from NATO

21     air-strikes and to prepare for a defence against ground invasion.

22             The witness will testify that the collegium of the staff of the

23     Supreme Command regularly met once a week.  From time to time,

24     inter-meetings [as interpreted] of the staff were also organised.  The

25     witness submitted reports of these meetings almost every time, and the

Page 10531

 1     contents of his reports exclusively dealt with intelligence.  In other

 2     words, the activities of foreign diplomatic and military representative,

 3     the writings and reporting of foreign media, and the way these activities

 4     reflected on the security and defence of the FRY.  The witness will show

 5     on the basis of which intelligence the General Staff of the

 6     Army Yugoslavia made its war plans during the NATO aggression.  The

 7     witness will testify on facts that were known to the Army of Yugoslavia

 8     concerning the way NATO forces assembled and prepared for a ground

 9     invasion on the border of the FRY with Macedonia and Albania.  He will

10     also speak about the role of Albania in providing equipment, training,

11     and supplying arms to the KLA terrorists.

12             The witness will testify about the information he had at his

13     disposal about the co-operation and support provided by NATO countries,

14     especially the US to the KLA, he will also give evidence on his contacts

15     and activities with member countries of the NATO initiated by the

16     Army of Yugoslavia in order to ensure a peaceful resolution of the crisis

17     between February and March 1999.

18             The witness will also testify about the constant insistence of

19     the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia that a peaceful solution be

20     found to the aggression of NATO.  The witness will testify that he was a

21     member of the negotiating team on behalf of the Army of Yugoslavia in

22     Kumanovo.

23             This is a brief summary of this witness's evidence.

24             JUDGE PARKER:  Thank you.

25             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation]

Page 10532

 1        Q.   Mr. Krga, were you a member of the Army of Yugoslavia; and if so,

 2     until when?

 3        A.   Yes, I was a member of the Army of Yugoslavia and the Army of

 4     Serbia Montenegro until 18 February 2005.

 5        Q.   Were you retired on that date?

 6        A.   Yes, pursuant to the law I had met all the requirements for a

 7     retirement pension and I retired.

 8        Q.   What rank did you hold at the moment of retirement?

 9        A.   Colonel-general.  In western terms it would be a four-star

10     general.

11        Q.   Thank you, General.  What is your occupation today?

12        A.   I'm a lecturer at a university school for diplomacy and security.

13        Q.   Thank you.  Can you briefly enumerate the positions you held in

14     JNA and the Army of Yugoslavia?

15        A.   During my service I occupied a variety of command and staff

16     positions.  I had two terms of office in diplomacy in Prague and in

17     Moscow and in the last few years of my active service I occupied high

18     positions in the General Staff in the defence ministry.  I was chief of

19     the intelligence administration and advisor to the minister concerning

20     defence policy and international military co-operation.  I was also

21     Deputy Chief of the General Staff and Chief of the General Staff.

22        Q.   Thank you.  Just for the record, I'll repeat the question.  Your

23     answer is recorded properly.  The question was could you briefly explain

24     to which positions you were appointed within the JNA and the

25     Army of Yugoslavia.  Thank you for your answer.

Page 10533

 1             I would like to now deal with 1998 and 1999.  Which exact

 2     positions did you have in the defence ministry in 1998?

 3        A.   During 1998, I was advisor to the minister for defence policy and

 4     international military co-operation.  And that duty meant that I dealt

 5     with matters of defence policy and co-operation on a military level with

 6     foreign countries.  In addition to that, I had direct contacts with the

 7     minister and proposed various solutions to him linked to a change in the

 8     organisational structure of the ministry, the General Staff, and the army

 9     in general, and matters concerning our relations with other countries

10     including the NATO alliance and many other organisations.  The minister

11     at that time was Pavle Bulatovic, and he accepted most of my proposals.

12        Q.   In 1998, did you attend meetings of the General Staff of the

13     Army of Yugoslavia?

14        A.   No.  At that time, that is to say from 1993 up until 2003, the

15     General Staff was not within the composition of the ministry.  That is to

16     say, the minister of defence was not superior to the Chief of the

17     General Staff.  The Chief of General Staff was directly linked to the

18     president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.  So that I did not

19     attend the collegiums of the Chief of the General Staff during that

20     period of time.

21        Q.   Thank you.  Let me ask you now about the processes in the

22     Ministry of Defence and the army.  During 1998, was there a process to

23     unify the Ministry of Defence and the General Staff?

24        A.   Yes, especially after an agreement reached between Milosevic and

25     Holbrooke.  We understood that the time of peace had come and that we

Page 10534

 1     could undertake certain organisational changes of a substantive nature,

 2     and along those lines I proposed a project to unify the

 3     Ministry of Defence and the General Staff, to unite them.  And this is

 4     something that required several months for everything to assume its

 5     proper place.

 6             However, for reasons that are generally known, the situation

 7     deteriorated and so we were not able to undertake that job at the time

 8     but we left it to several years later.

 9        Q.   Tell me, this action to unify or unite the Ministry of Defence

10     with the General Staff, was that normal?  Was it normal to do something

11     like that in an army that was preparing for offensive activities or a

12     possible war?

13        A.   No, certainly not, because it would be impossible for the army to

14     be engaged in some war conflicts in a stage whereby organisational

15     processes were taking place and changes were taking place.  You do things

16     like that in stable periods when you expect a time of peace and when

17     there was no need for any direct involvement on the part of the armed

18     forces.

19        Q.   Thank you.  Tell me now, during 1998, the processes linked to the

20     Special Forces corps, what happened there, do you have any information

21     and knowledge about that?

22        A.   Yes, the corps of the Special Forces was one of the strongest

23     forces at that level in the Army of Yugoslavia; and within its

24     composition you had the special units, the Guards Brigade, the armoured

25     brigade, and some other units.  So it was a very powerful unit, a mighty

Page 10535

 1     unit.  However, at the end of that same year, 1998, decision was made to

 2     disband it.  And in the first few months of 1999, the unit was in fact

 3     disbanded.

 4        Q.   I'm going to ask you the question I asked you earlier on, a

 5     moment ago.  The disbanding of the corps of the Special Forces, was that

 6     a customary move for an army that was preparing for any kind of offensive

 7     action or a war in the near future?

 8        A.   Certainly not.  It was a measure that could be expected in

 9     peacetime under peaceful conditions in an environment that would enable

10     this vast job to be dealt with smoothly.

11        Q.   Thank you.  Now, let's look at the Ministry of Defence.  And in

12     1998 how did they view the Holbrooke-Milosevic Agreement in the ministry?

13        A.   Well, the Ministry of Defence, the General Staff, the whole army,

14     the whole country in actual fact, this was seen as lifting the burden.

15     They were all very pleased and we, especially the professional soldiers,

16     hoped that an armed conflict had been averted and that the problem would

17     be resolved peacefully or, rather, through political means.

18        Q.   Tell me now, please you were in the Ministry of Defence, so you

19     weren't in the General Staff, and you explained that position to us.

20     Now, did you have any information whatsoever about the situation in

21     Kosovo during 1998 in view of the fact that you were in the

22     Ministry of Defence?  And if you did, what information did you have and

23     who did you obtain it from?

24        A.   Although the General Staff, as I said earlier on, was not

25     subordinated to the Ministry of Defence, the minister of defence himself,

Page 10536

 1     as a member of the government, would of course receive information from

 2     the General Staff and the intelligence services and also from diplomatic

 3     representatives.  So part of that information, I myself read.  And I was

 4     therefore informed, if not fully, then to a great extent about the events

 5     that were going on at that time both in Kosovo and Metohija and generally

 6     speaking in that environment.

 7        Q.   Thank you.  Tell me now, as an advisor to the

 8     Ministry of Defence, did you attend any meetings which the minister had

 9     with foreign diplomats and foreign military representatives; and if so,

10     at meetings of that kind, was anything discussed linked to Kosovo, if you

11     recall?

12        A.   Well, yes, there were a number of such meetings.  And when the

13     ambassador of a foreign country would come, he would be escorted by the

14     military attaché and I would attend such meetings with the minister and

15     they would discuss the security situation but also various forms of

16     co-operation.

17             And I remember one particular meeting after an incident and

18     conflict that had broken out linked to the Jasharis.  When the ambassador

19     military attaché of Great Britain came to see the minister, this topic

20     was discussed extensively.  Everything -- everybody felt very

21     uncomfortable that a situation like that had arisen in the first place,

22     but it was noted that it was an anti-terrorist operation and they spoke

23     about some of their experiences from similar operations in Northern

24     Ireland.

25             MR. STAMP:  Excuse me, forgive me for interrupting, Your Honours

Page 10537

 1     and my friend.

 2             JUDGE PARKER:  Mr. Stamp.

 3             MR. STAMP:  Counsel is venturing into areas relating to the

 4     witness's exercise of his functions when he was in the

 5     Ministry of Defence and what he observed and what he did during that

 6     period of 1998.  I don't recall seeing that in the summary and maybe I

 7     missed it, but actually I didn't bring my notes for that period because I

 8     didn't anticipate we were going to be dealing with his work in the

 9     Ministry of Defence.

10             JUDGE PARKER:  Mr. Popovic.

11             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, in the summary which I

12     read out at the beginning before this witness's testimony began, it was

13     clearly mentioned that he was during 1998 in the defence ministry and

14     that he would be talking about his knowledge and experience working

15     there.  So I see no reason why we should not briefly deal with that

16     particular period since the witness explained to us what the role of the

17     Ministry of Defence was compared to the General Staff and the army in

18     general.

19             JUDGE PARKER:  Can you point to any particular passage in the

20     summary?

21             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, of course.  It's paragraph 2.

22     In the course of 1998:

23             "The witness was an advisor in the Ministry of Defence for

24     defence policy and international co-operation."

25             JUDGE PARKER:  That tells us his position.  The issue is whether

Page 10538

 1     it indicated you were to discuss his activities in that role.

 2             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] We only stated the function he

 3     performed.  His post.  And so I'm asking him now whether he attended any

 4     meetings and whether he has any knowledge about things like that, and the

 5     witness is recalling one such meeting but I'm not going to dwell on it

 6     and I'm going to move on to 1999.  But I was just interested to hear

 7     whether he was informed about the situation in Kosovo at that period.

 8             JUDGE PARKER:  Thank you.

 9             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation]

10        Q.   General --

11             JUDGE PARKER:  Just a minute, please.

12                           [Trial Chamber confers]

13             JUDGE PARKER:  Do we understand you are now moving on to 1999,

14     Mr. Popovic?  That avoids the difficulty then, please carry on.

15             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Absolutely so, Your Honour.  We are

16     moving on to 1999.

17        Q.   General, can you explain to us in greater detail the situation in

18     the Army of Yugoslavia, what that was like, and the situation in

19     Kosova-Metohija at a point in time when you were appointed chief of the

20     intelligence administration in the General Staff which is January 1999?

21        A.   As I've already said, at the end of 1998 and the beginning of

22     1999, in the ministry, the General Staff, and the army, there was a

23     certain mood of optimism with respect to the resolution of the crisis in

24     Kosova-Metohija, and this was based on the Holbrooke-Milosevic Agreement.

25     And we sincerely hoped that the situation would be resolved, as had been

Page 10539

 1     agreed through peaceful means, that is.  However, already in mid-January

 2     of that year, 1999 and later on, various incidents began to take place

 3     and this gave us cause for concern with respect to further developments.

 4             We knew, of course, that in October 1998 an armed conflict was

 5     narrowly avoided, and we were afraid that a situation would crop up

 6     whereby that would be the outcome again.

 7        Q.   Thank you.  I'd like to ask you now to explain to us the role of

 8     the intelligence administration within the frameworks of the

 9     General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia?

10        A.   The intelligence administration or the intelligence component

11     within the structure of the General Staff, as in any other country, has

12     the prime task of monitoring the security situation in an area.  And to

13     weigh it up, to assess the dangers and the threat to the country's

14     security.  And that's the kind of work we did too.

15             In addition to that, as the chief of the intelligence

16     administration, I myself, was, if I can put it this way, the host to

17     foreign military attachés and I had almost daily contact with them.  They

18     came to see me, we discussed the situation, we discussed the problems,

19     and I can say that most of them shared our conviction that the situation

20     was becoming more complicated.  And we sought ways and means of avoiding

21     any possible conflicts.

22             Now, the knowledge that I gained and information I gained, I

23     would inform the collegium of the Chief of the General Staff, and if

24     there were any more important questions, I would inform the members of

25     the Supreme Defence Council, the defence minister, and some other state

Page 10540

 1     officials.

 2        Q.   Thank you.  Now, the way in which the administration functioned,

 3     the intelligence administration, we will deal with that in greater detail

 4     when we come to analyse the documents that I'm going to put to you.  But

 5     I'd like now briefly to ask you to tell us how you went about gathering

 6     information, the information that you sent on further to the

 7     General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia?

 8        A.   Information came from various sources.  Public announcements by

 9     various international forum, the governments of foreign countries,

10     various statements made by high-ranking state officials, media and so on

11     and so forth; but we mostly relied on our own intelligence sources via

12     intelligence offices abroad and in the country, and we also used

13     electronic reconnaissance and monitoring for the gathering of information

14     as well as reconnaissance of the troops on the ground.  Also we had a

15     number of contacts and co-operation with foreign intelligence services.

16     We exchanged visits and information so that that was another way in which

17     we gained important information and intelligence.

18             All this intelligence was -- well, we used the customary

19     technology, we would analyse and process the information coming in, we

20     would weigh it up to assess how far the information was realistic and

21     truthful or not, and if we thought they were realistic, then we would set

22     the information out in our reports and analyses and so on and so forth

23     and send them on to the people I've already mentioned.

24        Q.   This intelligence that you gathered, did it serve you and the

25     General Staff in the making of plans or strategies, whatever, and if so,

Page 10541

 1     could you give us a few details?

 2        A.   Yes, certainly.  Any serious plan concerning the security made in

 3     the General Staff would first analyse the situation and the threats that

 4     it posed.  It would be followed by a presentation of the possible

 5     engagement of the army to neutralise such threats.

 6             Mine was a very responsible role, namely to present to the

 7     General Staff the situation in the territory concerned, and to suggest

 8     measures that could be taken to avoid surprise attack and preserve our

 9     security.

10        Q.   Thank you.  Are there any specific plans that you mean when you

11     say that, or are you describing the way you considered such intelligence

12     generally and used it in making plans?

13        A.   Our General Staff, like many other staffs, had a number of plans.

14     And all these plans concerning the security of the country featured in

15     the first position an analysis and suggestions.  Of course, there were

16     plans concerning staffing and replenishment that did not need

17     intelligence to be included in the first paragraph.  But whenever an

18     engagement of units was involved, then intelligence was a necessary

19     component.

20        Q.   When you say in your answer "like many other General Staffs

21     perhaps our General Staff had a great number of plans," could you explain

22     further what you mean by that?  And also tell us if there were a number

23     of such plans, on what would the use of any such plan depend?

24        A.   It all depended on the various threats to the country.  There

25     were plans to defend from aerial attack, plans of defence in case of a

Page 10542

 1     ground invasion, plans of defence against attacks from various directions

 2     and sources.  Most of these plans, since I worked in the General Staff

 3     for a long time, never were implemented because the threat envisaged

 4     never materialised.  But it's simply a rule and a custom that armies make

 5     contingency plans for all sorts of situations.

 6        Q.   Thank you.  We will now move to a number of documents.

 7             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May I just ask the Usher for his

 8     assistance.  The Defence, Your Honours, has again prepared a binder with

 9     the documents we will be using.  And with your leave, we would like to

10     hand the binder to the witness.

11             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

12             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation]

13        Q.   General, any time I call a document, I will give you the tab

14     number for you so you will be able to find it.

15             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we now call up in e-court

16     P1337.

17        Q.   For you, General, it's tab 2.  We can see on the screen the

18     collegium, session of the collegium of the Chief of General Staff of the

19     Yugoslav Army held on 14 January 1999.  Can you explain briefly what is

20     the collegium of the Chief of General Staff and how often did this

21     collegium meet in January 1999?

22        A.   Collegium of the Chief of the General Staff is one of the methods

23     of work wherein usually once a week all chiefs of various administrations

24     and sectors would be -- were meeting to analyse the situation in the

25     country and in the army, and this meeting would make certain conclusions,

Page 10543

 1     after which the Chief of the General Staff would issue instructions as to

 2     how to realise these conclusions.

 3             As I said, this collegium met normally once a week and sometimes

 4     more often.

 5        Q.   Thank you.

 6             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Page 6, please, in the B/C/S, and

 7     page 6 in English.  This is page 5 in B/C/S, we need 6.  We have the

 8     right page in English now, thank you.

 9        Q.   Here you speak, General, and you say:

10             "In the reactions of western countries regarding the activities

11     of Siptar extremists and the kidnapping of Yugoslav Army soldiers, the

12     western countries mostly demanded the cessation of all military

13     activities and the start of a dialogue but did not explicitly condemn the

14     so-called KLA, which was particularly obvious when the US blocked the

15     statement from the UN Security Council chair on the activities of this

16     organisation."

17             Could you tell us briefly what this was about and on what

18     information you based this?

19        A.   As I said, we followed very carefully statements issued by

20     various institutions in international relations, primarily the UN, the

21     OSCE, the European Union, NATO, and we conveyed these positions to our

22     authorities.  I would inform the General Staff.  Although, of course,

23     members of the General Staff could find out about it from the media.  But

24     it was my responsibility in case any of them missed it, to brief members

25     of the collegium of the positions of foreign authorities.

Page 10544

 1             In this case it concerned the reactions to kidnappings of our

 2     soldiers.  Namely, on the 8th of January, Albanian terrorists kidnapped a

 3     number of our soldiers and we considered that as a violation of our

 4     agreement and something that could only deteriorate instead of defuse

 5     tensions.

 6             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we look at the last paragraph

 7     on page 6, which is page 7, paragraph 4, in English.

 8        Q.   General, here you say:

 9             "The engagement of Albania in the solving of the

10     Kosovo and Metohija issue (mediation between the representatives of the

11     political parties from Kosovo and Metohija in order to come to a unified

12     political platform) confirms the continued instrumentalisation of this

13     country by the US which is in this manner trying to strengthen the Siptar

14     negotiating position.  In addition to providing increasingly open support

15     to the secessionists, the Albanian leadership is trying to use these

16     activities to stabilise the political situation in the country ..."

17             Can you explain this further, you said that you always began your

18     briefs by an analysis?  Can we just wait a little.

19        A.   I was saying, we followed very carefully Albanian reactions to

20     the developments in Kosovo and Metohija, I believe it was quite natural

21     bearing in mind the links between Albania and the ethnic Albanians in

22     this province.  Every action had a special dimension because it could

23     contribute to either escalating or improving the situation.  We followed

24     the reactions in Albania itself because many of these reactions were

25     conditioned by internal affairs of that country which were very complex

Page 10545

 1     at the time and burdened with many problems.

 2             It was our estimate that by emphasising the problem of Kosovo and

 3     Metohija, various factors in Albania were trying, through expressions of

 4     patriotism and other feelings for their compatriots in Kosovo and

 5     Metohija, were trying to position themselves as an adequate

 6     representative of the Albanian people within their own country.

 7        Q.   Thank you.

 8             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] We'll continue with page 7,

 9     paragraph 2.  In English it's the last paragraph.

10        Q.   It says:

11             "The bringing in and deployment of the announced contingent of

12     the verifiers extraction forces as part of the Joint Guarantor Operation

13     has been finalised.  According to our information, about 1.850 people

14     over 40 armoured personnel carriers and 23 helicopters have arrived in

15     Macedonia so far."

16             What is this about?

17        A.   We know that the Holbrooke-Milosevic Agreement envisaged the

18     Verification Mission of about 2.000 people to be sent to

19     Kosovo and Metohija.  The mandate of that mission included the so-called

20     Joint Guarantor Operation, that is, bringing in forces that would have a

21     protective role and provide assistance during evacuations and such.  We,

22     of course, monitored these activities to check whether they were

23     implemented as agreed or perhaps there were some other forces being

24     brought to Macedonia that had nothing to do with this operation.

25        Q.   Thank you.

Page 10546

 1             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I'd like to move now to page 8 in

 2     B/C/S and page 8 in English.

 3        Q.   Here we see a conclusion, items 1, 2, and 3.  Item 1 says that

 4     finding a political solution to the crisis is still complicated because

 5     major powers do not display any readiness at this moment to exert any

 6     strong pressures on the Siptars, especially the KLA, to stop with the

 7     terrorist actions.  And before you give us your comment, please look also

 8     at item 3 which says that the political support offered under the

 9     influence of the US by the Albanian officials to the so-called KLA is on

10     the increase.  In this connection, training and equipping of Siptar

11     extremists in the north of the country is continuing and the aim is to

12     transfer them to Kosovo.

13        A.   First of all, I want to say that we were united in our conclusion

14     that only the political solution is the right solution.  And it was in

15     this light that we viewed all the on-going activities.  We feared an

16     escalation of these conflicts, which, in the end, unfortunately happened

17     with all the consequences.  We were certain at that moment - and I think

18     I would make the same conclusion now - that the international community

19     could have exerted more pressure on the Albanian extremists, and if it

20     had done so, the situation would have been diffused.  We were very

21     sensitive to any support given to their activities, especially training

22     them and providing equipment to these groups for insertion to Kosovo and

23     Metohija, because we knew that this could lead to new incidents that we

24     certainly hoped would happen -- wouldn't happen because they, as we knew,

25     would further complicate the situation.

Page 10547

 1             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we now have Exhibit P902 pulled

 2     up, please.

 3        Q.   General, it's document number 3 in your set.  General, there we

 4     have the collegium, the 9th Session of the Chief of the General Staff of

 5     the Army of Yugoslavia, held on the 21st of January, 1999.

 6             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we have the second page in the

 7     B/C/S -- no, page 6 in the B/C/S.  I apologise.  Page 6, please, which is

 8     page 7, the penultimate paragraph, in the English.

 9        Q.   General, if we look at paragraph 2, Lieutenant-General

10     Aleksandar Dimitrijevic is saying something.  Who was

11     Colonel-General Dimitrijevic, can you tell us?

12        A.   At the time, he was the chief of the security administration.

13        Q.   Thank you.  Now in paragraph 2 he says, the action in the village

14     of Racak on the 15th of January in the presidential announcement to the

15     Security Council states that the operation was carried out by the SFRY

16     security forces, in other words the Yugoslav army and the organs of MUP

17     of the Republic of Serbia.  Now, in the following paragraph, when

18     Milan Obradovic -- it's Milorad Obradovic.  Yes, I beg your pardon.

19     Milorad Obradovic says -- goes on to say, General, officially at the

20     federal commission, there was discussion about that, and as far as I

21     know, nobody mentioned the army nor was the army involved in anything, at

22     least to the best of my knowledge.

23             Now, General, sir, were they in fact discussing what had happened

24     in Racak on the 15th of January as Aleksandar Dimitrijevic say?

25        A.   The substance of the discussion here is twofold.  The first thing

Page 10548

 1     discussed was what had actually happened in Racak because, as we all

 2     know, this caused great unrest in the world.  And secondly, they analysed

 3     to see whether the army played any role.  The goal, of course, was to

 4     establish the actual facts so that steps could be taken.

 5        Q.   Thank you.

 6             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Now, could we look at page 8 in the

 7     Serbian version, which is page 10 in the English, please.

 8        Q.   And we are going to see what Colonel-General Dragoljub Ojdanic

 9     says.  General, Colonel-General Dragoljub Ojdanic, what was his position

10     at that time?

11        A.   Colonel-General Dragoljub Ojdanic at that point in time was the

12     Chief of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia.

13        Q.   Thank you.  He says:

14             "After this action or operation or whatever you want to call it

15     linked to the village of Racak, I was intrigued about this and I asked

16     the corps commander personally to send me a report on where the army was

17     and what the army was doing at that moment.  It had to be studied in

18     detail, and I studied this report, and then I went back to the special

19     report which was received from information on the 15th and

20     16th of January, and from the 1st, the 2nd and the 3rd, the most

21     important one, it says that the army did not take part."

22             Now, the Chief of the General Staff here, is he talking about the

23     information he received about the events in Racak?

24        A.   Yes, as is common knowledge in the army, there is a system of

25     reporting and sending information from bottom to the top.  So any

Page 10549

 1     possible engagement of the army in any event, the subordinate must inform

 2     his superior thereof.  And the Chief of the General Staff,

 3     General Ojdanic, as we can see from this, received those reports from the

 4     subordinate commands.  And from that it would follow that the army did

 5     not take part in that action around Racak.

 6             Of course, General Ojdanic certainly insisted upon

 7     establishing -- well, he was fully conscious of all the adverse

 8     repercussions that could follow, so he insisted on this topic.

 9        Q.   Let's digress for a moment, but we'll come back to the events in

10     Racak.

11             Now, in the following paragraph, General Ojdanic says as follows:

12             "The essence is that there is no reason for the army commander or

13     this General Staff to hide anything, things that are done must be known.

14     If we participated, we'll say that we did, and if we need suffer the

15     consequences for that, we will suffer them, but we must know why this is

16     being done ..."

17             Now, General, was this the position taken by the General Staff of

18     the Army of Yugoslavia linked to everything that happens in the army and

19     everything that the General Staff is in charge of and deals with?

20        A.   Yes, of course, the General Staff was fully conscious of the fact

21     that nothing can be hidden and that anything that happens will out sooner

22     or later.  And so we see that the Chief of the General Staff here found

23     it necessary to highlight that legal and professional and moral

24     relationship of the superior and subordinate commands.

25        Q.   Thank you.

Page 10550

 1             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Now, let's move on to page 9 of the

 2     B/C/S, which is page 11 of the English.

 3        Q.   General, it's the part where you had something to say.  And in

 4     the first paragraph you say:

 5             "A military envoy here claims that he personally saw the

 6     artillery shooting in the sector around Racak village."

 7             That's number one.  And then in paragraph 3, you say:

 8             "I also agree that we must absolute know exactly what went on,

 9     these are very serious issues, so we must know absolutely correctly what

10     the information is on what happened."

11        A.   Yes, immediately after the event in Racak, there were different

12     interpretations as to what happened there, how many victims there were,

13     who the victims were, who took part in the actions, so on and so forth.

14     And from my contacts with foreign military representatives, and this was

15     one of them, this military envoy, I came to the conclusion that the

16     situation was indeed serious and that we had to clear it up so that we

17     could tell the military envoys and the public at large and all the state

18     institutions and anybody else what the truth about those events was.

19        Q.   Thank you.

20             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we now move on to page 11 of

21     the B/C/S, which is page 13 of the English.

22        Q.   General, you, once again, take the floor at this meeting and say

23     the following:

24             "General, the main characteristic in the reactions of the

25     international factors to the latest escalation in Kosovo and Metohija and

Page 10551

 1     concerning Racak village is that all the relevant fora, including the

 2     Security Council, have come out with a statement, which is somewhat

 3     unusual for a conflict at this level."

 4             And then in the following paragraph you say:

 5             "This is the result of the influence of American diplomacy and

 6     the media."

 7             And then in paragraph 3:

 8             "The speed and manner of reaction to the events in the village of

 9     Racak reveal extensive co-ordination in the matter, which must be borne

10     in mind in the further development of the situation and possible similar

11     new cases."

12             General, may we have your comments to these statements made by

13     you.

14        A.   Well, we were really very concerned by the reactions to the --

15     well, we were concerned about the event itself, and then reactions to the

16     event.  And we analysed who reacted, what their reactions were, how

17     speedy the reactions were, what the contents of the messages were; and

18     from that we deduced that there were elements of co-ordination which

19     worried us quite a lot because we knew from earlier incidents and from

20     previous statements made by Albanian extremists that they would like to

21     see various conflicts and clashes to happen which would be a pretext for

22     NATO's involvement, of course on their side, against the

23     Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

24        Q.   Thank you.  Now staying with those same pages, in paragraph 4, on

25     the last sentence there, you say:

Page 10552

 1             "The United States of America are endeavouring to assert NATO's

 2     credibility on its 50th anniversary which will be celebrated in April of

 3     this year.  Now translated into practical terms, this means that NATO

 4     will endeavour to achieve something in Kosovo and Metohija which would

 5     serve to confirm its existence."

 6             Could you clarify that, please?

 7        A.   From the reactions of high ranking American representatives and

 8     from the reactions in the media and on the basis of contacts with a large

 9     number of diplomatic representatives, frequent mention was made of NATO's

10     credibility, that NATO's credibility was important and that NATO's

11     credibility should be saved.  Now, I understood the NATO member states'

12     endeavours along those lines, but in response to this position of theirs,

13     I would reply and say that the best way of preserving NATO's credibility

14     would be to see that the problems in Kosovo and Metohija even under NATO

15     pressure were resolved peacefully through political means.  I considered

16     that to be best for both NATO and Yugoslavia and for the Albanians living

17     in Kosovo and Metohija as well.

18        Q.   In the last paragraph, you say:

19             "In the command of the 5th ATAF command in Vicenza and the

20     command of the South European front in Naples, alert -- the level of

21     alert has been raised and reconnaissance activities of the NATO air

22     forces increased as part of Operation Eagle Eye."

23             Could you tell us what operation this was, Operation Eagle Eye?

24        A.   On the basis of the agreement we mentioned, of October 1998, it

25     envisaged the possibility of having the NATO air forces over-fly the

Page 10553

 1     air-space on the territory of Yugoslavia, FRY, and that was Operation

 2     Eagle Eye.  And let me just mention that on the basis of that agreement,

 3     it was envisaged that NATO representatives should be present in the

 4     command of the air force and anti-air defence of the Federal Republic of

 5     Yugoslavia and they really were in the command and followed and monitored

 6     the events as they were happening.

 7             Now, we saw what NATO's reactions were and followed them closely

 8     because through their activities we tried to see what the next steps

 9     would be and how that could reflect on our own country's security.

10        Q.   NATO force movements that are mentioned here, and we are dealing

11     with the 21st of January, 1999, here, those movements, did they -- were

12     they cause for concern, and did they indicate and did they give you a

13     premonition of what was to come?

14        A.   As I've said, we followed all movements closely, all NATO

15     movements closely, and on the basis of those movements, the movement of

16     air forces, naval forces, and ground forces, we tried to assess what

17     actions could follow.  We knew that NATO was a very mighty, powerful

18     organisation and that even in peacetime deployment -- with it's peacetime

19     deployment it could go into action.  It had the power to act.  So any

20     movements were cause for additional concern.  So we analysed their

21     movements to see what would happen.

22             THE INTERPRETER:  Microphone, Counsel, please.

23             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we have the next page in the

24     B/C/S and the English, please.

25        Q.   General, you go on to say:

Page 10554

 1             "On the territory of Albania, measures of raised alert can be

 2     noted, forces -- reserve forces have been brought in, there is additional

 3     mobilisation, and rapid training of reserve forces is being carried out

 4     in the territory of north-east Albania."

 5             May we have your comments there?

 6        A.   Yes, as I've already stated, we followed what was going on in

 7     Albania with particular tension.  Their armed forces which were fairly

 8     weak, albeit, as we can see, nevertheless, were engaged in some sort of

 9     activity.  And very often we would conclude that they were intentionally

10     going about these actions to exert additional pressure on our country.

11     Because, you know, if activities were being carried out, if combat

12     readiness was being raised, if mobilisation was underway and training

13     underway, rapid additional training for the reserve forces, then anybody

14     monitoring those activities would be concerned as to the object of those

15     measures, what they wanted to achieve by carrying all that out.

16             So when we mention rapid training in north-east Albania which is

17     Peshkopia, that general area, those settlements, we monitored the

18     situation and we drew certain conclusions, how this could be reflected in

19     Kosovo, because Kosovo is in close proximity to the location where this

20     rapid training was being conducted.

21        Q.   Thank you.  In the next paragraph you say:

22             "A new element in Albania is the engagement of" -- this is the

23     21st of January.  "The new element in Albania is the engagement of

24     Italian armed forces in the formation of refugee centres and camps."

25             What did such conduct of the Italian armed forces indicate to

Page 10555

 1     you?

 2        A.   I had a rather good and intensive co-operation with Italians.

 3     Around that time, I went for a visit to Italy, I spoke to my

 4     counter-parts in the military and intelligence services, and I thought

 5     they were rather concerned about the developments in Kosovo and Metohija.

 6     They had already realised that one of the consequences of an extended

 7     conflict could be a flow of refugees.

 8             At that time, the number of refugees was not so great, but they

 9     estimated that if the conflict escalated, the number of refugees could

10     increase.  Another key reason why Italy in particular was sensitive to

11     this problem is that a large number of Albanian refugees, even in the

12     past, moved through Italy.  They would take the ship to Italy, disembark

13     in Italy, and created certain problems for the authorities there.  And in

14     case the conflict escalated, the problem could really increase.  So they

15     wanted to avoid that.

16        Q.   The next paragraph are conclusions.  In the second conclusion, we

17     read this:

18             "Some new cases might be rigged, for instance, a humanitarian or

19     some other such disaster which could again cause the escalation of the

20     situation."

21             What did you mean by this?

22        A.   The developments in the former Yugoslavia during the war were

23     full of various orchestrated incidents involving large numbers of deaths,

24     and we were afraid that in addition to what happened in Racak, something

25     else could happen to cause uproar in the international community and

Page 10556

 1     provoke NATO to react, and we constantly warned our units on the ground

 2     to be alert and to avoid being dragged into a conflict that could get out

 3     of hand.

 4             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Can I now call D006-0051.

 5        Q.   Your number 4, General.

 6             This is a session of the collegium of the Chief of the

 7     General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia held on the 28 January 1999.

 8     Could you please turn to page 4, General.

 9             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] For the Trial Chamber, that would

10     be page 5, paragraph 5 in B/C/S and the one but last paragraph in

11     English.

12        Q.   You said this:

13             "However, it has been noticed over the past few days that some

14     foreign factors are beginning to accuse also the KLA for orchestrating or

15     rigging the incident in Racak."

16             Tell us, General, what information did you subsequently get about

17     Racak?  Where does this come from?

18        A.   I can say that many players in the international community were

19     making efforts to gain an objective view of the situation, and some of

20     them reacted in this way.  Some prominent individuals and leaders and

21     politicians in foreign countries had great misgivings about the

22     possibility of a worsening conflict, and they voiced opinions that the

23     KLA was deliberately escalating its activities and incidents, and

24     provoking the Yugoslav Army.

25             For each of these references, I had a source.  I cannot tell you

Page 10557

 1     now which international representative said what exactly, but there were

 2     a number of them.  Many of them accused us, but we tried to take into

 3     account also those who had a more objective view and made certain

 4     accusations against the KLA as well.

 5        Q.   On the same page, it's paragraph 6 in B/C/S, you say that a total

 6     number of planes was increased from 264 to 392.  Were you concerned by

 7     this increase in the number of aircraft?  What did that tell you?

 8        A.   As I said, we were very serious and attentive in monitoring the

 9     activities of the NATO forces around our country, and they did have quite

10     a respectable forces, even without reinforcement, on airfields around

11     Yugoslavia.  And whenever we saw an escalation, we were concerned because

12     we thought that was an indicator of additional pressure, on the one hand,

13     but also possible preparation for an armed operation.  And of course it

14     was a great concern.

15        Q.   Thank you.

16             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I will not be

17     finished with this document before the break, therefore, we might as well

18     take it now.

19             JUDGE PARKER:  Very well.  We'll take the break now.  It's the

20     normal time.  We resume at 11.00.

21                           --- Recess taken at 10.29 a.m.

22                           --- On resuming at 11.05 a.m.

23                           [The witness takes the stand]

24             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes, Mr. Popovic.

25             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

Page 10558

 1        Q.   General, we are continuing with the collegium meeting of the

 2     28th of January, 1999.  Let us look at page 5 in the B/C/S, page 6 in

 3     English.  Paragraph 2 in B/C/S and paragraph 3 in English.  This is what

 4     you say:

 5             "In the period to follow, we are to expect -- we are to

 6     expect --

 7             THE INTERPRETER:  Could counsel give us a reference in B/C/S.

 8             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] It is page 5, paragraph 2 and

 9     paragraph 3 on page 6 in English.

10        Q.   I'll read this out again.

11             "In the period to follow, we are to expect the harmonisation of

12     pressures and the acceptance of solutions with the threat of using

13     military force combined with permanent escalation of political and

14     economic sanctions.  In this way, the operationalisation of the strategy

15     of military threat continues."

16        A.   This is a conclusion as to what can be expected in the period to

17     follow.  We expected these pressures to continue, and the

18     operationalisation of the military threat implied a number of measures

19     destined to demonstrate this military threat.  That's what we discussed

20     before, bringing in more forces, various media announcements and

21     statements, which was enough to make the threat real, rather than just

22     verbal.

23        Q.   Thank you.  Please look at paragraph 4 on the same page in B/C/S.

24     It's also paragraph 4 in English.  In the last sentence you say:

25             "However, if some massacre or some undesirable incident were to

Page 10559

 1     occur again, were to be rigged again, it would make it worse."

 2             Can you give us your comment?

 3        A.   Yes, we were deeply aware that any action, any event similar to

 4     that in Racak or some other incidents we had seen in battle-fields

 5     earlier would be a new pretext for a media campaign against Yugoslavia,

 6     but could also cause some concrete steps to be taken against our country.

 7             Of course, that would happen if Yugoslavia were to be accused of

 8     causing such an incident.  So we sent many warnings and instructions to

 9     units to beware of such provocations because that could only hurt our

10     country.

11             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May I now ask for page 11 in B/C/S

12     and page 13 in English.

13        Q.   Again, it's a passage where you speak, General.  And in

14     paragraph 1 you say:

15             "First, in view of the course, the crises being resolved, there

16     are dozens of variants and possibilities in play and there are all sorts

17     of things.  There is something that is called reality, there is trickery,

18     and I would like to draw your attention to these, we simply should not

19     believe everything that the media comes up with."

20             Could you explain this, please.

21        A.   This shows, again, how responsible we were in our attitude to

22     everything that was happening around us, everything reported in the media

23     and elsewhere.  We registered, as I say here, that there are many options

24     in how the situation might develop, and I wanted to warn my colleagues

25     from the collegium that they should not believe everything they hear and

Page 10560

 1     read in the media, but that they should try instead to gain an objective

 2     view of developments, because the media were reporting in a wide variety

 3     of ways and it was certainly undesirable to rely on the media reports

 4     alone, especially for us in the collegium.

 5        Q.   Thank you.

 6             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to

 7     tender this document, please.

 8             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

 9             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, the document shall be given

10     Exhibit D00522.  Thank you, Your Honours.

11             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.  May we have the next

12     document, which is P1333, please.

13        Q.   General, it's document number 5 in your set, and it is the

14     interim session of the collegium of the Chief of the General Staff of the

15     Yugoslav Army held on the 2nd of February, 1999.

16             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] And may we turn to page 4 in the

17     B/C/S, please, which is page 6 in the English.

18        Q.   And I'd like us to look at paragraph 5 or the penultimate

19     paragraph in the English where you say the following:

20             "In the interests of the defence of the country, we therefore

21     believe that the third option is the most realistic, to propose to the

22     state leadership that we should participate in the negotiations but that

23     we should clearly define our conditions, especially with regard to

24     protecting our sovereignty, putting an end to the NATO threats, and

25     avoiding the arrival of these forces in the territory of Kosovo ..."

Page 10561

 1             Now, General, could you clarify the position presented in this

 2     paragraph, which options were available, and was that the position

 3     generally taken by the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia?

 4        A.   It was a period prior to the Rambouillet negotiations, and from

 5     our point of view, we analysed how the situation might develop.  It was a

 6     political question first an foremost, and it was up to the state organs

 7     to deal with it, but we thought that it would be useful to analyse what

 8     kind of turn the situation could take.  And as I say there, there were

 9     different options open and we discussed and evaluated these options and

10     decided that the best option was to go to the negotiations and to try and

11     find a solution to the situation that way.

12             Now, as far as the reference to NATO forces coming into Kosovo,

13     at the time, there was the fear that if these forces were brought in,

14     they would give the Albanians the possibility of achieving their

15     pretensions, the pretensions they had in the area, and what we see

16     happening now, the cessation of that part of the territory from the FRY.

17             Let me remind you that during the time of the negotiations, the

18     president of the day of Serbia, President Milutinovic, mentioned that

19     NATO forces might be brought in to Yugoslav territory once Yugoslav

20     becomes a member of NATO, but as we know, the agreement was never

21     reached.  And so our fears were linked to that, and we relied on a

22     statement made by the state -- secretary of state of the

23     USA Madeleine Albright to the effect that the Albanians themselves were

24     boasting and bragging and they said that the main goal of bringing in

25     NATO forces to Kosovo and Metohija, that that was the main aim and that

Page 10562

 1     their requirements would then be met, the requirements made in

 2     Rambouillet.

 3        Q.   When you told us about the things the Albanians boasted about, on

 4     the basis of intelligence gathered, did you have information to the

 5     effect that the Albanians were discussing these positions with other

 6     factors?

 7        A.   Yes, we did have information to that effect, and it was on the

 8     basis of that intelligence that I said what I did here.

 9        Q.   Thank you.

10             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Now let's look at document D006, a

11     Defence document, 0118.  D006-0118.

12        Q.   General, we have before us a document titled "Assessment of the

13     Intelligence and Security Situation and the Danger to the Security of the

14     Federal Republic of Yugoslavia."  First tell me if you are familiar with

15     this document and whether your intelligence administration took part in

16     compiling it?

17        A.   This is a document that was drafted from time to time when the

18     situation was deemed to be complex and that it needed more detailed

19     analysis than was possible at the collegium meetings.  And then pursuant

20     to an order from the Chief of the General Staff, various institutions

21     would be given a task of each preparing its contribution for this

22     document, this assessment.  And all the information was harmonised and

23     dovetailed and we see that this was done at the level of the sector for

24     operations of staff affairs, the first administration, and this is one of

25     those assessments.  And the intelligence administration, which I headed,

Page 10563

 1     took part in that at the time.

 2        Q.   Thank you.

 3             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we look at page D006-0122 in

 4     B/C/S, please, and D006-0161 in the English version, please.

 5        Q.   General, in your set of documents this -- it is the assessment of

 6     the intelligence assessment situation under point 1, the influence of the

 7     foreign factor or of the -- the influence of the foreign factor and the

 8     subparagraph is titled "Influence of the International Community At Large

 9     and Its Organisations."  Now, my question to you is, was this subject

10     part of what your intelligence administration dealt with in assessing and

11     appraising the intelligence and security situation?

12        A.   Yes, that did come under the remit of the intelligence

13     administration.

14        Q.   Thank you.

15             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we now have D006-0140 in the

16     B/C/S version displayed, please, and D006-0181 for the English.

17        Q.   General, it's towards the end of the document where we have the

18     section titled conclusions.  That's right.  And could you focus on

19     paragraphs 3, 4, and 5.

20             "Foreign armed forces in the region, and particularly those that

21     are occasionally deployed in the area, may exert great pressure and have

22     considerable influence on the political processes, and, under certain

23     circumstances, might be used in various forms of military intervention

24     against our country.

25             "The disposition and activities of the foreign armed forces in

Page 10564

 1     the region indicate that the southern part of the FRY faces the greatest

 2     threat."

 3             And then:

 4             "From the point of view of national Defence, our primary

 5     objective should be to avoid the deployment of foreign armed forces in

 6     our territory and in particular an armed conflict with NATO, and at the

 7     same time to preserve our vital government and national interests."

 8             May we have your comments to what I've just read out, especially

 9     with respect to an avoidance of a conflict with NATO?

10        A.   The conclusions set out here is the logical result of what I was

11     saying earlier on; the situation was already very complex at that time,

12     and it was our view that the armed forces could have this kind of effect

13     on our country.  Now, we soldiers were attached to the idea of having the

14     problem solved through a peaceful solution, through political means, and

15     we availed ourselves of every opportunity to avoid an armed conflict with

16     NATO.  We, of course, knew full well the strength that NATO had, NATO's

17     might.  And when we compared that to the forces we had, we came to the

18     conclusion that a conflict with NATO would be highly detrimental to our

19     country, and we knew that the former battlefronts of the former

20     Yugoslavia, we knew what the outcome there was, so we were absolutely in

21     favour of a peaceful solution to solving the crisis in

22     Kosovo and Metohija.

23        Q.   Thank you.

24             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I'd like to tender this document

25     now, Your Honours.

Page 10565

 1             JUDGE PARKER:  This is not an exhibit already?

 2             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I don't believe so, no.

 3             JUDGE PARKER:  Very well.  It will be received.

 4             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00523.  Thank

 5     you, Your Honours.

 6             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we next have Exhibit P1341,

 7     please.

 8        Q.   General, it's document number 7 in your set.  This is a collegium

 9     meeting of the Chiefs of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia held

10     on the 25th of February, 1999.

11             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we have page 3 in the B/C/S

12     displayed please, which is page 4 in the English.

13        Q.   General, I'm going to ask you to take a look at paragraph 4

14     there, on page 3 that is, which is the penultimate paragraph in the

15     English.  It says:

16             "Various pieces of information indicate that, these foreign

17     troops would not completely disarm the so-called KLA.  The Albanians are

18     even bragging that Ms. Albright had promised them that NATO troops will

19     make sure that they hold a referendum, even if there were no such

20     provision in the agreement."

21             General, a moment ago you were telling us about this position and

22     the information you received.  Just briefly, does this reflect the actual

23     situation linked to bringing in NATO troops to the territory?

24        A.   Yes, we could say that it does reflect the conclusions that we

25     discussed earlier.

Page 10566

 1        Q.   Thank you.

 2             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we now have page 4 in the

 3     B/C/S, which is page 5 in the English.  And I'd like us to look at

 4     paragraph 3.

 5        Q.   General, in the last paragraph you say the following:

 6             "Finally, General, I would suggest that the collegium consider

 7     the possibility of proposing to our state leadership that representatives

 8     of the General Staff be included in the preparation of our delegation for

 9     the next stage of the negotiations during which highly important military

10     issues will most probably be addressed, primarily the issue of the status

11     of the Army of Yugoslavia and the role of the military in general in the

12     implementation of a future agreement.  In that respect, there is no one

13     else more qualified or more responsible than us."

14             May we have your comments to that, please.

15        A.   Following on from the USA delegation and others, and their

16     example, we saw that the diplomats were accompanied by military experts.

17     So I had a number of meetings -- or we had a number of meetings with

18     General Clark, General Anderson, and others who would come to our country

19     together with Mr. Holbrooke, for example.  And we concluded that it would

20     be a good idea if our delegation included military men for the reasons

21     stipulated here.  However, that did not happen, and I think that was a

22     mistake.  It wasn't a good thing that the soldiers weren't represented

23     there because they would have contributed their military knowledge and

24     professional knowledge and realistic attitude and would help resolve the

25     situation in a better way than it was, in fact, dealt with.

Page 10567

 1        Q.   Thank you.

 2             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we have

 3     Defence Exhibit D008-3977.

 4        Q.   It is document number 8 in your set, General.

 5             Now, General, we see that this is a report on the intentions of

 6     the so-called KLA which was sent to the General Staff on the

 7     9th of March, 1999.  Before we undertake a more detailed analysis of this

 8     report, could you first please explain to us report or piece of

 9     information, what does that mean and what did this particular one

10     contain?

11        A.   The report or information was one of the publications published

12     by the intelligence administration.  There were various bulletins, rules

13     of service, and so on.  But when we have something which was called

14     "informatia" or information report, there were two types.  The first type

15     was a daily report, and the second type of information sent out was one

16     that dealt with just one subject.  And the one we are looking at is the

17     latter, so it dealt with just one subject and that was here the

18     intentions of the KLA.  And you see who it was addressed to and sent to,

19     the addressees were those persons whom we considered to be interested in

20     this kind of information.  So it wasn't sent out to everybody, as we

21     would do in case of the daily regular reports.

22             So this was a piece of information obtained through intelligence

23     sources saying that the Albanians or the KLA --

24        Q.   Yes, we'll come to that.  We'll look at it in greater detail.

25             In paragraph 1 it says:

Page 10568

 1             "The incidents along the border and the conflicts between the

 2     Army of Yugoslavia MUP of Serbia carried out by the so-called KLA and

 3     ambushes and so on, is carried out by the KLA for -- to recruit new

 4     members, attain media support, and to intensify the collection of

 5     financial assistance from the Siptars in the diaspora."

 6             Could you just tell us more about the general security situations

 7     and the facts stated in the first part of this report?

 8        A.   Unfortunately, everything that was indicated here actually

 9     happened.  Kidnappings, killings, media propaganda, recruitment of new

10     members, et cetera.  It was clear over a longer stretch that the

11     Albanians were hoping for and expecting a NATO intervention because only

12     with that could they attain their goals, that is, the creation of a

13     separate territory and cessation from Yugoslavia, as well as

14     independence.

15             They must have reckoned that if peace were to be negotiated and

16     if we had returned to the negotiating table, these objectives of theirs

17     would not be so easy to attain, and we see statements from that time made

18     by the representatives of Albanians that confirmed this.

19             So that there is a continuity in their thinking, namely that

20     their objectives were attainable only with foreign assistance and NATO

21     intervention.

22        Q.   Thank you.  In paragraph 2 of this report we read the following:

23             "With foreign assistance, the so-called KLA has drafted plans for

24     staging a massacre of innocent Siptars and members of the OSCE, which

25     would, they believe, provide a legitimate basis for activating the forces

Page 10569

 1     to extract the verifiers, and thus the entry of a NATO ground force into

 2     Kosovo and Metohija.  In addition, the leadership of the so-called KLA,

 3     in line with NATO preferences, are also taking steps to paint a picture

 4     of humanitarian catastrophe in this connection, many villages have been

 5     abandoned under pressure, beside the villages Gorance, Rezance, Pustenik,

 6     Krivenik, Ivaja, Ljac, Kotlina, and Straza.  The plans also envisaged the

 7     inhabitants to move out of the villages of the Lepenac river valley,

 8     Kovacevac, Dicevac, Dubrava, and Vata, and Slatina?

 9        A.   This information we also obtained from sources on the ground, and

10     it clearly shows that by staging this humanitarian catastrophe which they

11     believed could give a pretext for a NATO intervention, they also exerted

12     pressure on their own fellow citizens and made them move out of many

13     villages.

14        Q.   Thank you.  I'd also like to look at the last paragraphs of this

15     report.  It says:

16             "There is indicia that the so-called KLA, estimating that these

17     villages are already empty and it makes sense to exert pressure to

18     evacuate them, is planning attacks on major settlements which would

19     create the effect of an exodus and would provoke reactions by the

20     Army of Yugoslavia and the Ministry of the Interior, giving NATO a reason

21     to intervene.  The preparation of camps for refugees in the north of

22     Albania and in Macedonia indicates that this information on the

23     preparation of a new humanitarian catastrophe is correct."

24        A.   Yes, that's the scenario we've been discussing for a while.  They

25     were looking for a good reason for the NATO to intervene, and one good

Page 10570

 1     reason would be humanitarian catastrophe, the death or evacuation of a

 2     large number of ethnic Albanians, and that's why they were doing what

 3     they were doing.

 4        Q.

 5             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, may I tender this

 6     document now.

 7             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

 8             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00524.  Thank

 9     you, Your Honours.

10             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.  Can we now call up

11     D157.

12        Q.   It's your tab 9.  This is a document from the

13     Kosovo Verification Mission, the date is 26 February through

14     4 March 1999.  On page 1 we see the subheading "KLA."  It says:

15             "It seems that over 100 members of the KLA crossed the border in

16     combined with the said militia while encouraging the locals to leave.

17     The incentive to move into this region is unclear, although a number of

18     possibilities exist.  By encouraging the movement of internally displaced

19     persons, the international media was able to claim a Serb offensive was

20     underway."

21             On the next page in B/C/S it says:

22             "Indeed, Euro News reported that a Serb offensive had started and

23     accompanied this with images of Serbian vehicles on the move and locals

24     on the road with sad faces.  It was a good move for the welfare of ethnic

25     Albanians.  The Albanian daily "Koha Ditore" described Kacanik village as

Page 10571

 1     a ghost town, which the verifiers recorded as an untruth.  And the first

 2     reports from the region implied in a certain way that there had been a

 3     massacre."

 4             Now, General, can you tell us something about this and about the

 5     media manipulation involved here?

 6        A.   This shows very eloquently that the KVM was perfectly aware of

 7     these manipulation attempts by Albanians, and I would particularly like

 8     to emphasise this last sentence, namely "the first reports implied in

 9     some way that there had been a massacre."

10             This seems to indicate that their attempt at manipulation was at

11     first successful.  However, it was later established that this was not

12     true, and the media reported on that as well.  We also had our own

13     information from the ground, and we were able to confirm or to deny all

14     this media speculation.  A very renowned medium such as the Euro News

15     accepted, in this case, the Albanian interpretation.  Regrettably, they

16     were not alone, there were many such cases where the media, without going

17     into the essence of things and without checking their information,

18     reported immediately, accepting somebody's version, and confused the

19     public about what was really going on in Kosovo and Metohija.

20        Q.   Such information, did it also affect your views in the

21     intelligence administration about the general picture in -- created by

22     the foreign media?

23        A.   I've already told you that we monitored official statements, but

24     we also followed media reporting, foreign media and our media.  But in

25     many such cases when the stories were obviously untrue, we realised that

Page 10572

 1     we should not use the media as our main source of information.  We should

 2     just monitor them as an expression of their views and their attitude.

 3     This was evident in the case of Racak and many other cases later.  We

 4     were perfectly aware that the situations on the ground was nothing like

 5     the reports.  And unfortunately the media compromised themselves,

 6     broadcasting inaccurate information.  And that affected our view of the

 7     media.  We became so suspicious that even when the media reported

 8     something perfectly accurately, we did not take their word for it because

 9     there had been so many cases of manipulation before.

10        Q.   Thank you.

11             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now see P965.

12        Q.   General, it's your tab 10.  This is a session of the collegium of

13     the Chief of General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia held on

14     11 March 1999.

15             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we turn to page 5 in B/C/S

16     and page 7 in English.  In English it's paragraph 2, and paragraph 4 in

17     B/C/S.

18        Q.   Here you say the following:

19             "Among the forces around us, new developments have taken place.

20     A Joint Command was formed in Skopje on the 4th of March, and they were

21     placed under the command of General Jackson.  In keeping with their

22     plans, he should also be the commander if new Kosovo forces are formed.

23     New units are brought in in these rapid reaction forces and there are

24     already 9.500 personnel in Macedonia."

25        A.   Yes, in addition to the forces we identified as support forces

Page 10573

 1     for the Verification Mission, other forces began to arrive in Macedonia,

 2     namely the command that was established, headed by General Jackson, and

 3     the number of personnel in Macedonia at the time caused us concern as to

 4     the really intentions of these forces, why they were accumulating in that

 5     area, why there was no official notification to us.  And, of course, we

 6     continued to watch them intensively, and unfortunately all we were able

 7     to see was that the forces were being built up.

 8             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we have page 6 in B/C/S.  And

 9     page 7 in English stays.  We'll be discussing the last but one paragraph

10     in English.

11        Q.   You say this:

12             "I suggest, General, to consider the possibility of holding a

13     briefing for foreign representatives, perhaps next week when the

14     situation is clearer, primarily regarding our positions on the main

15     issues, namely the bringing in of forces into Kosovo and Metohija.  And

16     we again propose to consider the possibility that a representative of the

17     Army of Yugoslavia be included into our delegation for the next round of

18     negotiations because we believe military issues are now coming up on the

19     agenda, and it would be a good idea for us to be represented."

20             General, what kind of briefings are you referring to here, and if

21     they were indeed held, what were the effects?

22        A.   It is a regular custom in diplomacy that the host country holds

23     briefings for ambassadors, military attachés and other diplomatic

24     personnel.  These briefings are held to familiarise them with some new

25     development such as an event or a new law passed, perhaps, or something

Page 10574

 1     else.  And we also held these briefings from time to time when we thought

 2     necessary or perhaps at their request.

 3             I was usually the one who hold these briefings.  We would invite

 4     all military attachés.  I would brief them on the situation and give them

 5     a chance to ask questions that I would take or one of my colleague, and

 6     in that respect we had a rather good co-operation with military attachés.

 7             They would inform in turn their defence ministries and their

 8     General Staffs.  And what they learned at these briefings was an element

 9     that they could use in making their own estimates of the situation and

10     the crisis.  There was one interesting situation when, after a briefing,

11     the American and British military attachés came to see me a few days

12     later and said that all that I had told them was indeed correct because

13     in the meantime they had visited Kosovo and Metohija and verified my

14     information.  Of course, we always made every effort to provide accurate

15     information, as a matter of principle, but also because we knew that they

16     could easily check all that we said and there was no point in telling

17     them anything that wasn't true.

18        Q.   Thank you.

19             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Let's now go to the next document,

20     P1339.  May we have it pulled up on our screens, please.

21        Q.   General, it's number 11 in your set.  It's a collegium, session

22     of the collegium of the Chief of the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army

23     held on the 18th of March, 1999.

24             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] And may we have page 3 of the

25     B/C/S, which is page 4, paragraph 6, of the English.

Page 10575

 1        Q.   General, you say the following:

 2             "Most of the foreign diplomatic representatives and analysts

 3     believe that the initial situation regarding the continuation of

 4     negotiations on Kosmet implies an extremely uncertain outcome.  The

 5     foreign factor will attempt to direct the developments in the field in

 6     tune with the course of the talks, especially if there should be a

 7     serious impasse due to the process."

 8             And this would serve the purpose of justifying their threat of

 9     using armed force against our country so that it could be forced to

10     accept an imposed solution."

11             I'm going to read out one more paragraph which I believe is

12     closely linked to what you said, to cut this short:

13             "As far as the forces in the area are concerned, the introduction

14     of new rapid-reaction units from the NATO corps into Macedonia has

15     continued and so far around 1200 men have arrived."

16             Now, it says what they wish to achieve with this number, or,

17     rather, what did they wish to achieve by having this number of men placed

18     at the borders of Serbia?

19        A.   This was the 18th of March, we can see, which was a week before

20     the NATO forces attacked the FRY.  And the NATO forces that were brought

21     into Macedonia were later found to be KFOR forces which entered Kosovo

22     after the agreement.  Now, General Jackson over there told us in Kumanovo

23     that they had been in Macedonia for three months already and that they

24     were waiting to enter our territory.  Of course, at the time, we were not

25     able to be 100 per cent certain that those were the forces in question,

Page 10576

 1     that is to say on the basis of the agreement that was supposed to enter

 2     Kosovo and Metohija, because through the media and other intelligence

 3     channels, the idea would be launched from time to time about the

 4     possibility of a ground force operation against our country, so we were

 5     very concerned and monitored the deployment of these 12.000 men into

 6     Macedonia right next to our border.

 7        Q.   Thank you.

 8             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Now let's move on to page 4,

 9     paragraph 2, of the B/C/S, which is page 5, paragraph 4, of the English.

10     Paragraph 4 from the bottom.

11        Q.   General, here it says that as far as military pressures goes, it

12     will continue and at some point in the negotiations they might even go a

13     step further than Rambouillet and threaten to use force in such a way as

14     to have all the factors of aggression against the FRY put into action.

15     And this would lead to the withdrawal of the verifiers to Macedonia, the

16     transfer of authority for air-strikes from Solana to Clark, and a 48-hour

17     combat readiness would be introduced and even reduced, et cetera.

18             May we have your comments to that paragraph about information

19     linked to these options and finally whether that proved to be true?

20        A.   Unfortunately, everything that I stated here on the 18th of March

21     from the 24th of March onwards proved to be correct later.

22        Q.   One more paragraph, staying on that page, the last paragraph on

23     page 5 of the English.  It says:

24             "This could come about if a Serbian delegation were to be accused

25     of being the sole culprit for the failure of the negotiations, and if new

Page 10577

 1     clashes were to be provoked in Kosovo with a larger number of victims,

 2     destruction, and refugees, and possible attacks on the verifiers and

 3     border skirmishes and incidents."

 4             Did this prove to be true?  Did this come about?

 5        A.   Yes, unfortunately this was later confirmed to be correct.

 6        Q.   Thank you.

 7             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Now may we have page 6 of the B/C/S

 8     version, please, which is page 8 of the English, paragraph 1.

 9        Q.   General, here we can see Colonel-General Dragoljub Ojdanic

10     speaking, and he is referring to certain events.  And in paragraph 3 he

11     says as follows:

12             "After that, Clark said that he wanted to convey to me a very

13     serious problem which is that the Yugoslav Army will be destroyed if it

14     enters into a conflict with NATO.  If that were to be requested from

15     NATO, all the depots, barracks, and forces of the Yugoslav Army will be

16     destroyed."

17             Now, my first question to you is this:  Do you know that

18     General Ojdanic had communication with General Clark, and if so, how was

19     this communication effected?

20        A.   Yes, I do know about that, and they had communication in two

21     ways.  The first was by way of an exchange of letters, they exchanged

22     letters, correspondence, and then there were telephone conversations

23     between the two.  I was present during two such telephone conversations

24     between General Ojdanic and General Clark.

25        Q.   Now, in keeping with that, I'm going to ask you to comment a few

Page 10578

 1     more documents which are closely related to what Mr. Ojdanic referred to

 2     here.

 3             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] And for that, may we have

 4     Defence Exhibit D006-0215, please.

 5        Q.   And in your set, it is document number 12, General.

 6             Looking at this document, we can see that it is dated the

 7     22nd of March, 1999, and it says:

 8             "Enclosed with this document we are sending you an Official Note

 9     about the telephone conversation held between the Chief of the

10     General Staff Yugoslav Army, Colonel-General Dragoljub Ojdanic, and the

11     commander of the NATO forces for Europe, General Wesley Clark."

12             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Now let's look at D006-0233 in the

13     B/C/S version which is D006-0238 in the English version.

14        Q.   General, it says the Chief of the General Staff General Ojdanic

15     in his conversation said as follows.

16             "However, since in our area NATO forces are being accumulated and

17     we are openly being threatened with the use of force, it is our duty to

18     do everything in our power to defends ourselves."

19             We are talking about the 22nd of March, two days prior to the

20     start of the NATO campaign.  Can you just comment on this position taken

21     by General Ojdanic briefly?

22        A.   Well, yes, it was a very difficult time.  However, I have to say

23     at this point that at that time in Belgrade, Mr. Holbrooke was visiting,

24     together with General Anderson and some other representatives, and

25     negotiations were taking place there with the political leadership of

Page 10579

 1     Yugoslavia led by President Milosevic.  I have to say that there was a

 2     glimmer of hope despite everything that was going on in the area linked

 3     to the armed forces and so on that at the 11th hour a political solution

 4     would indeed be found.  Unfortunately, that did not happen.

 5     General Clark, during those negotiations, openly threatened

 6     General Ojdanic as is stated here, he said that in a few days time, he

 7     would completely route the Army of Yugoslavia if NATO forces became

 8     involved.

 9        Q.   General, as we don't have the page up on our screens that we are

10     dealing with --

11             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] It is page 3 or D006-0217 in the

12     B/C/S version, which is page D006-0220 in the English version.

13             THE INTERPRETER:  Could counsel kindly slow down when quoting

14     numbers.  Thank you.

15             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] That's it.

16        Q.   Yes, please continue.

17        A.   Yes.  It was a fairly tense atmosphere.  I remember that

18     General Ojdanic called General Clark to come to Belgrade to discuss the

19     accusations held by General Clark, accusations of the army.  He did not

20     speak of any humanitarian catastrophe at the time.  He mostly referred to

21     alleged lack of respect for the agreement reached in October 1998 in the

22     sense of units leaving the barracks or a larger number of units in the

23     field, et cetera.

24             So at the proposal of General Ojdanic, we considered that this

25     should not be a valid reason for the start of a war, and that is why he

Page 10580

 1     invited General Clark to come to Belgrade so that he could see on the

 2     spot what the situation was like and that they could discuss all this,

 3     however, General Clark's reply was that he couldn't go to Belgrade

 4     because that could be interpreted as pressure of a kind.  I think this

 5     response from him was not a logical one, had no meaning or sense because

 6     at that time in Belgrade, there were visits by General -- by

 7     Mr. Holbrooke and many others with him, so the arrival of Clark in

 8     Belgrade wouldn't be seen as any additional pressure, but as an attempt

 9     to find a solution to a major problem that was looming.

10             I can also add that in a previous conversation, General Clark

11     invited General Ojdanic to travel to Brussels to discuss these various

12     issues.  Now, we suggested to General Ojdanic that he should take

13     General Clark up on his invitation to go to Brussels, and I think to this

14     day that that would have been a wise move.  However, it never came about.

15     I can't say for what reasons exactly, because I'm not fully informed of

16     the matter.

17        Q.   Thank you.

18             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'd like to tender

19     this document into evidence now, please.

20             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

21             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00525.  Thank

22     you, Your Honours.

23             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we have Exhibit D006-0239 up on

24     our screens now, please.

25        Q.   General, it is number 13 in your set of documents.

Page 10581

 1             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I think we've got the wrong number

 2     recorded which means that the wrong document has appeared on the screens.

 3     The document I need is D006-0221.  I might have misspoken and given you

 4     the wrong number, so I apologise if that is the case.  Yes, that's right

 5     now.  Thank you.

 6        Q.   General, we have before us a document also dated the

 7     22nd of March 1999, and it reads:

 8             "Please forward in the usual manner the enclosed letter of the

 9     Chief of the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army,

10     Colonel-General Dragoljub Ojdanic, to the NATO supreme allied commander

11     for Europe, Colonel-General Wesley Clark."

12             Now, looking at this document --

13             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Let's turn to the last page, which

14     is D006-0223 in the B/C/S, and in the English the page number is

15     D006-0238.  That's it, yes.  Thank you.

16        Q.   I'm going to read -- but let me ask you first, are you familiar

17     with the fact that General Ojdanic sent a letter of this kind to the

18     commander of the NATO forces, General Wesley Clark?

19        A.   Yes, it was a letter sent after the negotiations held on the

20     previous day that we discussed a moment ago.  And we put it to

21     General Ojdanic that he should make another last-minute attempt to

22     transcend the situation and to send a letter to Wesley Clark.  And that

23     is what this letter is here.

24        Q.   Thank you.  Now, General Ojdanic writes the following in one of

25     the paragraphs:

Page 10582

 1             "The possible bombing of -- the Siptar terrorists would see the

 2     possible bombing as a signal to attack the remaining Serbian population

 3     of Kosovo and Metohija, the Yugoslav Army and MUP who would then respond

 4     fiercely, which would lead to new unnecessary casualties, conflicts, and

 5     other problems with unforeseen consequences."

 6             Was that the position taken by the General Staff of the

 7     Yugoslav Army, and is General Ojdanic warning of the consequences that

 8     might ensue if there were to be an attack and bombing by NATO?

 9        A.   Well, anybody who gave it some thought, and particularly it was

10     clear to the soldiers, that if NATO were to attack, that this would

11     create an atmosphere -- a very difficult atmosphere and climate and that

12     it would allow those who wanted to to expand the conflict with new

13     provocations and to make the army and police need to respond, which would

14     very serious consequences.  And this is actually what happened during

15     that unfortunate war.

16             There's no doubt here that General Ojdanic wanted to ask

17     General Clark to wield his influence once more and to prevail upon him to

18     find a political solution rather than move on to a conflict, because

19     without a doubt, a conflict is always the worst option.  An armed

20     conflict is always the worst option, and Clausewitz's definition, the

21     well known definition that war is the continuation of politics with other

22     means, in this case we could say that war had compromised politics

23     because we know what it all led to ultimately.

24        Q.   Precisely bearing in mind with what you've just told us, the next

25     sentence in the following paragraph reads as follows:

Page 10583

 1             "The problem is a complex one, but it's solution is possible only

 2     through political means."

 3             Does that underline once again the way in which the problem

 4     should be solved?

 5        A.   Yes, absolutely.  That was a permanent view in the General Staff,

 6     that political solutions should be sought because that would be the only

 7     real solution to the problem.  Any other scenario would be highly

 8     problematic and would -- and the situation that ensued confirmed that.

 9             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.  May I ask

10     this document to be admitted into evidence.

11             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

12             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00526.  Thank

13     you, Your Honours.

14             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.  Can we now see

15     D006-0239.

16        Q.   General, it's your tab 14.  We can see that the document is

17     called "Brief 2/99," and before we move to a more detailed analysis of

18     this document, could you please explain what kind of document is this to

19     be called briefing number 2/99?

20        A.   Of course.  This is not really a document.  This is a draft, an

21     aide-memoire that I used for my briefing as the chief of the

22     Supreme Command because it was called Supreme Command from the moment

23     when the war began.  And it was created based on the information we

24     received during the day.  The intelligence administration that I headed,

25     continuously worked to fill in the facts which enabled me to always

Page 10584

 1     provide the most up-to-date information.

 2             This document was not submitted to anyone.  It was not filed

 3     anywhere or recorded anywhere, and it shouldn't even be called a

 4     document.  I must say, I'm a bit surprised that this paper found its way

 5     here, not being a document.  Some things here I crossed out, some I

 6     added.  The situation was so tense that I needed something like an

 7     aide-memoire to give my presentation to the collegium.

 8             In peacetime, I would jot down my notes in my own notebook; but

 9     during the war, my colleagues prepared this draft for me.

10             MR. STAMP:  Your Honours, could I ask that one thing be

11     clarified.  I'm not sure if I heard correctly what is here represented at

12     page 57, line 3.  Or line 2.  It said "I used for my briefing as the

13     chief of the Supreme Command" as if he is describing himself as the chief

14     of some body called the Supreme Command.  It might be important, so I

15     wonder if it could be clarified because I'm not sure that is what he

16     said.

17             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Absolutely.  We'll clear that up.

18        Q.   You were talking about the purpose of these briefings.  What

19     purpose did they serve to you and what was your position at that time?

20        A.   With the beginning of the war, as I said already, in fact, I said

21     before that in peacetime we had collegium meetings once a week and during

22     the war we had at least one a day, always in the evening.  It was not a

23     classical collegium meeting, although it was mostly the same people from

24     the General Staff that analysed the situation.  As usual, at collegium

25     meetings, I would be the first to give a briefing to acquaint the members

Page 10585

 1     of the collegium with the situation in the region, with the developments,

 2     the forces of the NATO, plans for the future, et cetera, and then we

 3     would analyse the situation in the army, which steps needed to be taken

 4     and such.

 5        Q.   Thank you.  Could you just answer what was your exact position at

 6     the time?

 7        A.   In peacetime, I was chief of the intelligence administration

 8     directly responsible to the Chief of the General Staff.  In war-time

 9     establishment, I was chief of the intelligence section of that war-time

10     General Staff, and I was under the chief of sector for operations and

11     staff affairs.  So I was not directly linked to the Chief of the

12     General Staff as in peacetime.  It was an idiosyncrasy at the time.

13     Later it was changed, the war-time establishment was changed.  But at the

14     time, that's how it was.

15        Q.   Thank you.  I think this clarifies the transcript.

16             Could you please look at paragraph 6 of this paper which says:

17             "If this does not happen, according to some reports, very

18     rigorous sanctions would be introduced against the FRY, while others say

19     the third phase of the operation would be activated - NATO ground forces

20     entering Kosovo and Metohija by force."

21             This -- the date of this document is March 1999.  We can see that

22     on one of the later pages.  Were there any indications, however, that

23     there would be a further NATO ground attack against Yugoslavia?

24        A.   Yes, we had our own channels of information, but also the media

25     reported that the ground invasion was possible.  I already said that we

Page 10586

 1     closely monitored the bringing in of NATO forces into Macedonia, and when

 2     we compared all the various information, it all seemed to indicate that a

 3     ground invasion was possible.

 4             Later on, as the war progressed, they gave up on that idea, but

 5     there were times when there was a heightened expectation of a ground

 6     invasion which made us wary, but also made us take additional measures,

 7     such as increased mobilisation and build-up of the army, not only in the

 8     area of Kosovo and Metohija but in the territory of the entire

 9     Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

10        Q.   Thank you.

11             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to

12     tender this document.

13             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

14             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00527.  Thank

15     you, Your Honours.

16             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now call D006-0272.

17        Q.   Your tab 15, General.

18             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I can see that it's a

19     couple of minutes to the usual break time, perhaps we should not start

20     with the analysis of this document before the break.  I have quite a few

21     questions on it.

22             JUDGE PARKER:  Very well.  We will look at our break now, but,

23     Mr. Popovic, how are you going for time?

24             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I'm going very well, Your Honour.

25     I will do my best to speed up.

Page 10587

 1             JUDGE PARKER:  If you were going very well, you would be finished

 2     by now.  Two hours was indicated for the witness.

 3             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] You are quite right.  However, and

 4     I suppose this e-mail reached the Trial Chamber as well, the Defence has

 5     already given up on some witnesses that were to testify on some of the

 6     same subjects as this one, and we are going to try to use as few

 7     witnesses to gain as much information as we can, and that is why the

 8     examination of some of these witnesses might take a bit longer.  And we

 9     believe this witness is a case in point for which I apologise in advance.

10     But we will certainly not exceed the time allocated to our Defence case.

11     In fact, I'm pretty sure that it will be shortened in total.  And that is

12     why we are trying to get as much information out of a fewer number of

13     witnesses avoiding us calling more of them.  I hope it will overall speed

14     up the proceedings.

15             JUDGE PARKER:  Thank you for that, Mr. Popovic.  It would be

16     helpful to the Chamber if in the next few days there could be some more

17     accurate indication of what witnesses were not to be pursued and your

18     time estimates because we are having to make future plannings depending

19     on timing, and if there is to be some significant change in the witnesses

20     you are to call, we need to take that into account.

21             We will adjourn now and resume at 1.00.

22                           [The witness stands down]

23                           --- Recess taken at 12.31 p.m.

24                           --- On resuming at 1.03 p.m.

25                          [The witness takes the stand]

Page 10588

 1             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes, Mr. Popovic.

 2             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

 3        Q.   General, we'll go back to the document called briefing

 4     number 6/99 of 28 March 1999.  At the end of paragraph 1 it says:

 5             "All types of aircraft were used in the attacks, including B-52s,

 6     that is, including seven B-52s; 12 F-117s; and, for the first time, four

 7     EC-130s; and an undetermined number of A-10 Thunderbolts."

 8             Can you tell us about this last plane?

 9        A.   That is a special type of aircraft intended to broadcast

10     propaganda messages.

11        Q.   What are Thunderbolts, A-10 Thunderbolts, does it have any

12     special purpose?

13        A.   These aircraft, thunderbolts, are in support of ground troops, in

14     combat, mainly against armoured personnel carriers and tanks.  They also

15     used ammunition including depleted uranium.

16        Q.   Do you have information that such ammunition was used in the

17     territory of Kosovo, and if so, what kind of information?

18        A.   This type of ammunition was also used in Kosovo and Metohija, but

19     it was used outside of Kosovo in the rest of Yugoslavia.  In Kosovo,

20     there are many locations where such ammunition was used but primarily the

21     area between Pec, Djakovica, and Prizren.  Outside of Kosovo and

22     Metohija, there were five locations in the area of the town of Vranje.

23     We inspected these locations, and, as Chief of General Staff, I

24     personally went there to evaluate the ground on those five locations.

25        Q.   When you speak of your role as Chief of General Staff, what

Page 10589

 1     time-period would that be?

 2        A.   That would be from mid-2002 until the beginning of 2005.

 3        Q.   Thank you.  Let's look at paragraph 4, it says:

 4             "For that purpose, Clinton held a meeting today with the members

 5     of the National Security Council, and a meeting of NATO experts is

 6     scheduled to take place tomorrow in London, where it is emphasised,

 7     recommendations will be made for entering Kosovo and Metohija by force,

 8     If they assess that our forces in Kosovo and Metohija have increased to

 9     50.000, and the number of refugees to 500.000, over which there is much

10     speculation."

11                First of all, can you tell us something about these

12     speculations?

13        A.   What you call speculation was pervasive before and during the

14     war.  First of all, there were attempts to prove that indeed in that area

15     a humanitarian catastrophe was taking place and that it was the forces of

16     the FRY, the police and the army that are responsible.  This number of

17     500.000 was something like a target.  If the number of half a million

18     refugees was reached, that would have been enough for ground forces to

19     invade Kosovo and Metohija.  Later on, things happened to be differently.

20     It didn't happen that way.  But in the first days of the war, this is the

21     speculation that circulated widely in the public.

22        Q.   Since we are on the subject of speculation, can you tell me

23     whether you know that there existed an Operation Horseshoe, called

24     Operation Horseshoe?  Do you know anything about that?

25        A.   Yes.  That was within the context of those speculations that were

Page 10590

 1     being made to put it to the public that the forces of Yugoslavia had an

 2     operation prepared in advance called Operation Horseshoe.  The term used

 3     was actually a Croatian term rather than a Serbian term, and what they

 4     wanted to show was that an operation involving armed forces was being

 5     organised geared towards the ethnic cleansing of Albanians.  Of course,

 6     no such operation was ever planned or executed.  And later on, through

 7     the media and in other ways, they gave up on mentioning that particular

 8     operation.

 9             We concluded that on the basis of Clark's caution and warning

10     that he would route the Yugoslav Army in the space of three days, when

11     that didn't happen as he had announced, then they suddenly started to

12     favour the term humanitarian catastrophe.  They kept bandying about the

13     term humanitarian catastrophe and the enormous number of refugees as so

14     on.  They put that out and wanted to justify the further involvement of

15     NATO forces in that way and to create the opinion among the international

16     public, principally the countries that took part in the attack, to

17     justify a continuation of those operations by claiming that there was a

18     humanitarian catastrophe afoot.

19        Q.   Thank you.

20             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I'd like to tender this into

21     evidence, please.

22             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

23             THE REGISTRAR:  As Exhibit D00528, Your Honours.

24             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we now have

25     Defence Exhibit 006-0383 put up, please.  I think there was an error in

Page 10591

 1     the transcript.  The number is D006-0383.  That's right, that's the

 2     document.

 3        Q.   General, just briefly on this document, it is dated the

 4     30th of March, 1999, and it is a warning with respect to the taking of

 5     steps, and it says:

 6             "NATO planners," in paragraph 2, "are counting on good results

 7     because the Siptars have about 200 laser target markers.  They will

 8     maintain communication with NATO officers through satellite telephones

 9     that were left behind by the verifiers when they retreated from Kosovo

10     and Metohija."

11             May we have your comments linked to the links between NATO

12     officers, verifiers, and the rest?

13        A.   As we can see, this is a piece of information from the commander

14     of the corps from Pristina, and they arrived at this intelligence, and we

15     received information to that same effect from other sources, that is to

16     say that those links had been established and that they were functioning

17     during the war.

18             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.  I'd like to tender this

19     document, Your Honours.

20             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

21             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00529.

22             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we have D006-0276 next, please.

23        Q.   It's document number 17 in your set, General.  This is briefing

24     number 10/99 of the 30th of March, 1999, and what I'm interested in is

25     the penultimate paragraph which says that NATO, on the 29th of March, in

Page 10592

 1     formal terms, changed its intentions for the forces in Macedonia, some

 2     15.000 soldiers, so that officially they are no longer intended there for

 3     peacekeeping purposes, but for combat tasks.

 4             May we have your comments?

 5        A.   Well, yes, that falls within what I was saying earlier on, that

 6     is to say that Clark's intention to resolve the situation in two or three

 7     days' time, to have the forces enter Kosovo probably as peace forces

 8     first on the basis of an agreement, and since that did not succeed, then

 9     they took on the character of combat units in actual fact, and their

10     equipment, armaments, composition, everything, indicated that that's what

11     they were, according to our intelligence.

12        Q.   Thank you.

13             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we look at the last paragraph

14     on that same page in the B/C/S, I think it's on the following page in the

15     English version.

16        Q.   It says:

17             "In parallel with continuing the air operations and

18     preparations for carrying out a land operation, there is increasingly

19     visible readiness among the leading western countries to stop the

20     aggression, for which the most favourable option is being sought.

21     Furthermore, a growing number of countries has offered to mediate in

22     finding a solution for starting the negotiations."

23             Now, linked to that paragraph, the one I've just read out, and

24     bearing in mind what you have told us thus far in your testimony, as

25     far as the contacts that you had with different diplomats and

Page 10593

 1     military attachés, can these initiatives at mediation be understood in

 2     that way and be brought in connection with the paragraph I've just

 3     read out?

 4        A.   Yes, certainly they can.  Just before the beginning of the war, I

 5     had contacts with American, German, and Italian and other

 6     representatives, diplomats, and others, with the idea of wielding as much

 7     influence as they could to prevent a war from breaking out.  They had --

 8     they showed understanding for this kind of initiative, but the reactions

 9     mostly were that it was a little late in the day and that matters had

10     already come to a head and were out of control and that the peace option

11     wasn't a viable one at that point.  So this was yet another attempt of

12     that kind whereby the military attaché of Italy came to see me and

13     conveyed a message from the Italian side, and probably from NATO as well

14     as an institution, that the general mood was that a peaceful solution

15     should nonetheless be sought.

16             Of course, what he told me I conveyed to the relevant

17     authority, but unfortunately, the situation developed unfavourably and

18     a solution was not found.  We also had contacts through some British

19     and other mediators who also wished to intervene to find a peaceful

20     solution.  The United States of America, too, sent various envoys to

21     try and help find a solution.  There were German, Italian, and other

22     ones, but unfortunately, it did not bear fruit.

23             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I'd like to tender that document

24     into evidence too, Your Honours, please.

25             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

Page 10594

 1             THE REGISTRAR:  As Exhibit D00530, Your Honours.

 2             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May we have

 3     Defence Exhibit 007-4143 next, please.  007-4143 is the number, once

 4     again.  Yes, I found it.

 5        Q.   That's the right document, General.  It's number 18 in your set.

 6     It is information number 22 dated the 31st of March, 1999.  And just

 7     briefly, my question to you relates to item 3:

 8             "The B-1B bombers, whose arrival in the region was announced,

 9     will use cluster bombs with IC fuses against the armoured mechanised

10     units," infrared fuses.

11             Did that come to pass?  Was it proved correct?

12        A.   Yes, not only attacking armoured mechanised units, but many other

13     targets, cluster bombs were used against them, and unfortunately not all

14     the remnants or cluster bombs have been cleared up from the area to this

15     day.

16        Q.   Thank you.

17             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'd like to tender

18     that document too.

19             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

20             THE REGISTRAR:  As Exhibit D00531, Your Honours.

21             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, at this point in

22     time, I'd like to use a document during the examination-in-chief of this

23     witness which was not on the 65 ter list provided by the Defence.  We did

24     provide the Prosecutor with the document yesterday, and it is in e-court,

25     but we conducted a search and came up with this document and we believe

Page 10595

 1     it to be useful in the examination of this witness.  It is 65 ter 1974.

 2     And it is a report from the BBC News of the 1st of April, 1999.

 3     If you consider that we can utilise this document in this way and if

 4     there's no objection from the Prosecution, then I'd like to continue

 5     along those lines and examine the witness about this document, just

 6     briefly.

 7             JUDGE PARKER:  Mr. Stamp.

 8             MR. STAMP:  I have no objection to that, Your Honour.

 9             JUDGE PARKER:  Please carry on, Mr. Popovic.

10             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

11        Q.   General, it is document number 21 in your set.  It's a newspaper

12     article published on the BBC News website after a press conference

13     attended and held by the minister of defence of Great Britain.  The

14     foreign minister, Mr. Robin Cook and General John Drewienkiewicz, as it

15     says in this article, the former chief of the OSCE mission in Kosovo.

16     Now, tell me, please, Mr. Drewienkiewicz, since the document is in

17     English and we don't have a translation in Serbian, speaks about

18     expulsions and looting of Albanians taking place in Kosovo during that

19     time, and the period is the end of March.  Tell me, please --

20             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Before I go ahead with my question,

21     Your Honour, the Defence document number is D011-2268.  It's got a new

22     number.  2168.  D -- That's right.  That's the right document.

23        Q.   As a source of information for you intelligence service, press

24     conferences of this type or newspaper articles and the like that were

25     published on the Internet or in the papers, what value did you attach to

Page 10596

 1     them?

 2        A.   It would be normal that press conferences given by the foreign

 3     minister or defence minister or general of a major country should be

 4     noted with due attention and that the press conference should quote

 5     correct and precise data.  However, we saw that there was gross

 6     exaggeration at those press conferences, and we remember one such

 7     occasion when there were rumours straightaway about 100 thousand people

 8     dead and I don't know how many hundred thousand refugees and persons

 9     raped and so on which was not at all the case in reality.  So that these

10     press conferences instead of being taken seriously were usually taken

11     with -- as being just one more piece of information which we had to

12     verify and check out ourselves.  And very often we found that incorrect

13     data and untruths were being presented.  So, unfortunately, that's what

14     the situation was like.  It was not a good situation, and one would have

15     expected, if somebody makes a statement from a high level, that they

16     would be presenting true and correct data, not information that

17     exaggerated certain events with -- as a form of executing their own

18     hidden agenda, so to speak.

19        Q.   Now, in your testimony so far and in the documents that we've

20     looked at and tendered into evidence, we see a number of ways in which

21     the media could be manipulated.  Could you tell us briefly what the

22     reasons were for which you took information of this kind with a pinch of

23     salt, that you considered them to be unreliable and that you needed to

24     check them out?

25        A.   Well, I've already mentioned during my testimony here today the

Page 10597

 1     problem over Racak and the attempts made to paint an impression about a

 2     humanitarian catastrophe at a time when that was not the case.  There

 3     were not that many refugees at that period, so it was obvious that the

 4     object of these statements was to justify what was being done on the

 5     ground in the eyes of the international public.  I can't claim now that

 6     it was done intentionally with the aim of intentionally deluding public

 7     opinion and the international public, but without a doubt that is in fact

 8     what happened.  Public opinion was abused in that way about the actual

 9     facts on the ground.  And this was enormously detrimental to having the

10     crisis resolved, because it flared -- the conflict flared up that way, it

11     fanned the flames of the conflict, and even if there was some truth or

12     when there was some truth in the announcements made, they weren't taken

13     seriously on our part, and I think there could have been other ways in

14     which the representatives of foreign countries could resolve the

15     situation or help us resolve the situation in context with us and impart

16     information to us through their official services, information which

17     should lead and could lead to a change of conduct on our part; that was

18     omitted and the whole thing was reduced to a sort of media information

19     and it triggered reaction on our part the way it did.

20             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May I tender this document,

21     Your Honours.

22             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

23             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00532.

24             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we now call up D006-0279.

25        Q.   It's your number 22, General.  Briefing number 14/99 dated

Page 10598

 1     1st April, 1999.  In paragraph 1 it says:

 2             "The attack on the bridge in Novi Sad expanded the list of

 3     targets to include business facilities and elements of infrastructure by

 4     extending the strikes to include civilian infrastructure, the aggressor

 5     has gun with retribution and it will be increasingly difficult for them

 6     to justify their further actions before the international public."

 7             Could you comment briefly?

 8        A.   Well, that fits in with what I said before.  Within two or three

 9     days they did not manage to crush our forces completely as had been their

10     plan and therefore they extended the list of targets.  And they began to

11     conduct air-strikes against civilian targets far from Kosovo and

12     Metohija, in Belgrade, in Novi Sad, and in other towns.  Since there was

13     no military logic to it, we understood it as a sort of retaliation,

14     retribution.

15        Q.   Thank you.

16             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation]  Your Honours, I would like to

17     tender this document into evidence.

18             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

19             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00533.

20             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.  Now, I would like

21     D006-0270.

22        Q.   General, this is your number 23.  This is report

23     number 37 dated 3 April 1999.  It says:

24             "There are indicia that the NATO is planning to terrorise the

25     civilian population by air-strikes and thus cause a major exodus over the

Page 10599

 1     next seven to ten days to the centre of Serbia, Albania, and Macedonia.

 2     It is assessed that after that the army of Yugoslavia units and a small

 3     part of the population would be more or less all that remained in

 4     Kosovo and Metohija, which would enable them to mount decisive

 5     air-strikes with the use of chemical agents, in order to completely

 6     destroy the VJ units located in the area."

 7             Can you comment on this report?

 8        A.   This is one of the reports we got from the ground that they

 9     obtained information that seemed to support this scenario.  As we know

10     now, it did not actually happen, but this was certainly one of the

11     options that was considered, to separate the civilians from our units,

12     thus making our units an easier target.  They would then be more open to

13     attacks from all sorts of weapons.

14        Q.   In the last paragraph we read that:

15             "Using confidential sources, western intelligence services are

16     planting information among the Siptars, the ethnic Albanians, in the

17     diaspora to the effect that the NATO would begin within 24 to 48 hours

18     with indiscriminate bombing to raze Kosovo to the ground."

19        A.   Yes, this was one of the propaganda messages probably aimed at

20     intimidating our units or causing whatever reaction they had in mind.

21             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I would like to tender this

22     document now, Your Honours.

23             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

24             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00534.

25             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] D006-0281 would be our next

Page 10600

 1     document.

 2        Q.   General, it's your number 24, briefing number 19/99, dated

 3     3rd April, 1999.  We'll turn to page 2 immediately, both in B/C/S and in

 4     English, conclusions and proposals.  It says:

 5             "In view of the possible damage the aggressor could inflict on us

 6     and the fact that they are conducting all sorts of experiments and

 7     venting their frustration, I consider it is in our primary interest for a

 8     diplomatic initiative to be launched as and as soon as possible.

 9             "1.  In order to avoid being demonised in the media, I propose

10     that our border authorities organise points for the reception of Siptar

11     refugees who are returning to Kosovo and Metohija."

12             Could you tell us more about this?

13        A.   I've already told you that it was -- it had always been our

14     position that a diplomatic initiative is the only way to go.  And as for

15     this proposal to set up admission points for refugees, we had previously

16     recorded their departure from the FRY and their return.  They were moving

17     around in circles.  So we came to the conclusion that it would be a good

18     idea for the army and the MUP and our authorities to organise admission

19     points and to organise their return, wherever they wanted to go, and to

20     provide appropriate media coverage so that the world can see that not

21     only are we not expelling, but we are taking back these people who are

22     trying to return home.

23             This was not a setup or a media trick.  It was a sincere attempt

24     to deal with the problem that had become evident by that time, an attempt

25     to receive back those people.

Page 10601

 1        Q.   Thank you.

 2             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] I should like to tender this

 3     document now.

 4             JUDGE PARKER:  Yes.

 5             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D00535.

 6             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Now may I ask for D008 --

 7             THE INTERPRETER:  Could counsel please repeat the number.

 8             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] D008-3650.

 9        Q.   General, this is briefing number 21/99.  Let's look at

10     paragraph 2:

11             "There are manipulations concerning the deployment of a large

12     NATO force to Albania in Albania up to 6.000, which would be engaged in a

13     peacekeeping mission to create the conditions for the return of Siptar

14     refugees within the framework of a so-called humanitarian operation.

15     This should be seen as linked to the existence of plans for the conduct

16     of a step-by-step operation.  Siptar terrorists entering from Albania and

17     Macedonia are to take control of the part of Kosovo and Metohija and

18     create the conditions for the introduction of ground forces.  Some

19     sources indicate that the Siptars have been set in motion as part of this

20     plan in order to separate them from the VJ units which have become open

21     targets for the aggressor."

22             Now, there is mention here of the 4th of April.  What information

23     did you have of the 4th of April to confirm this information?

24        A.   We often mention that there was no ground invasion during that

25     time, but in a sense, a land operation did take place, and it was carried

Page 10602

 1     out by Albanian extremists from Albania on the axis of Kosara and it

 2     lasted for over a month.  But since it was unsuccessful, another attempt

 3     was made on the axis of Morina.  It was a major operation with

 4     involvement of Albanian extremists from Albania.

 5             We understood it was their objective to send this man into a

 6     ground attack, push back our forces from that region, and then NATO

 7     forces would be invited to take their place in the region as some sort of

 8     peacekeepers or peacemakers.

 9             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we turn to the next page in

10     B/C/S and in English.  In English it's para 5, proposals, and then

11     item 1.

12        Q.   "Refute that there is a humanitarian disaster, an allegation used

13     in the west to justify the aggression and prepare a ground operation."

14             Did you indeed have information to confirm these allegations, and

15     what was the purpose of citing a humanitarian catastrophe?

16        A.   There were many reports pushing the idea of a humanitarian

17     catastrophe and calling for air-strikes.  The ground invasion was still

18     an option at the time.  It was our estimate that this whole insistence on

19     a humanitarian catastrophe was driven by this objective, and that's why I

20     proposed that it is our job to present a real picture to the public at

21     home and abroad.  But it was not a humanitarian catastrophe caused by

22     anything we did, but it was as a result of the war that engulfed the

23     entire country, including the capital Belgrade and the fact that our

24     families too were occasionally refugees in the sense that they had to

25     leave their homes from time to time as many other citizens.  We were all

Page 10603

 1     targets and all of us could be said to be affected by humanitarian

 2     problems and tragedy.

 3             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we look at the next page in

 4     B/C/S and in English.  A draft communique.

 5        Q.   Please, focus on the first paragraph where it says:

 6             "The Army of Yugoslavia is not carrying out any sort of ethnic

 7     cleansing but is only responding to terrorist provocations.  As the

 8     terrorists have broken up -- have been broken up, the Yugoslav Army has

 9     halted these activities and is now focusing on preparations for defence

10     against the aggression and against the deployment of ground forces with

11     which we are being threatened daily.  When these threats cease, the VJ

12     units will return to their peacetime garrisons and downsize to the usual

13     level."

14             Was this indeed the position of the Army of Yugoslavia and their

15     explanation for the current situation?

16        A.   This reflected our general sentiment that armed activities should

17     cease as soon as possible, that the troops should return to garrison, and

18     the level of troops should be reduced to peacetime levels.  We were not

19     very happy that additional mobilisation had been carried out and all the

20     other things that increased threats imply.

21             In this way, we wanted to send a message and explain how we wish

22     the situation to develop.

23        Q.   Another sentence in paragraph 2 is important, the last sentence

24     which says:

25             "We too have a position on refugees, and it's simply this, return

Page 10604

 1     to your homes."

 2             Was this a clear statement of your position, a position held

 3     widely by the Army of Yugoslavia?

 4        A.   Yes, certainly we really wanted these refugees to go home because

 5     we knew that staying long in the open air or in refugee columns is being

 6     blamed on us and the best solution for us was for them to return home and

 7     that this should cease to be a pretext for continued air-strikes.

 8             MR. POPOVIC: [Interpretation] May I tender this document,

 9     Your Honours.

10             JUDGE PARKER:  It will be received.

11             THE REGISTRAR:  As Exhibit D00536, Your Honours.

12             JUDGE PARKER:  Mr. Popovic, we've gone five minutes over.  It

13     seems now that we must adjourn for the day.  We will resume tomorrow at

14     9.00.

15                           --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.49 p.m.

16                           to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 2nd day of

17                           February, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.