1 Thursday, 11 September 2014
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
5 [Trial Chamber and Legal Officer confer]
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Good morning to everyone in and around the
8 Madam Registrar, could you call the case, please.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is the case
10 IT-04-75-T, the Prosecutor versus Goran Hadzic.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
12 May we have the appearances, please, starting with the
14 MR. STRINGER: Good morning, Mr. President, and Your Honour,
15 Judge Hall. For the Prosecution, Douglas Stringer, Matthew Gillett,
16 Thomas Laugel.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
18 For the Defence.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Good morning, Your Honours. For the Defence of
20 Goran Hadzic, Zoran Zivanovic and Christopher Gosnell.
21 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. May the record reflect that we sit
22 pursuant to Rule 15 bis; Judge Mindua being absent.
23 Mr. Zivanovic, is your next witness ready.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. May be brought in.
1 [The witness entered court]
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Good morning, sir.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you for coming to The Hague to assist the
5 Tribunal. First of all, do you hear me in a language you understand?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I hear you perfectly well.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. Could you please tell us your name
8 and date of birth.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Borivoje Milinkovic. 29
10 January 1955.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you. You are about to read a solemn
12 declaration by which witnesses commit themselves to tell the truth. I
13 need to point out to you that the solemn declarations that you are about
14 to make does expose you to the penalties of perjury should you give
15 misleading or false evidence to this Tribunal.
16 Can I now ask you to read the solemn declaration the court usher
17 will give to you.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
19 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
20 WITNESS: BORIVOJE MILINKOVIC
21 [Witness answered through interpreter]
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much. You may be seated.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Examination by Mr. Zivanovic:
2 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Milinkovic, although we know each other, I
3 will introduce myself for the record. I am Zoran Zivanovic, and I
4 represent Goran Hadzic here.
5 First of all, I should like to ask you, if you remember, that on
6 the 9th and 10th June in 2003 you gave a statement to the Office of the
7 Prosecutor; that is to say, the OTP investigators of this Tribunal?
8 A. I remember.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see, please, 1D2328.
10 Q. [Interpretation] It will on the screen presently and you will be
11 able to see it.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Could we have a tab number, Mr. Zivanovic.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Just a moment, sorry. It is tab 31.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. On the left-hand side, you will see the English translation of
17 your statement.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] And if we could scroll down a
19 little, the English text.
20 Q. Can you see your signature here?
21 A. Yes.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we now move on to page 15.
23 Q. On this page, can you see your signature?
24 A. Yes, I can see it.
25 Q. I think you've seen this statement and your signatures are on
1 every page of this statement, but I wouldn't like to go through all of
3 Along with this statement, you also identified certain
4 photographs that were shown to you by OTP investigators on that occasion.
5 Can you remember that?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. I will only show you a couple of those. It's 1D2328.1. The next
8 tab, tab 32.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we move on to the next page.
10 Q. We don't have to see again all these photographs. In any case,
11 you recall they were shown to you and you recognised some of the people,
12 and this is a list of those you identified. Can you remember that?
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 Q. During our proofing session and while we were reviewing again
15 this statement, you made some corrections to the statement you've just
16 seen in Serbian. You recall that?
17 A. Yes, I do.
18 Q. I see you don't have the statement before you.
19 A. I'm sorry, I left it behind. I was told that I couldn't take it
20 with me.
21 MR. GILLETT: I have a B/C/S copy here that I could provide to
22 the witness, if Your Honour -- with Your Honours' leave.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please do.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I'm grateful.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you, Mr. Gillett.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: May we see on the screen 1D2328, please. And we
3 can move to the second page.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, what -- what's the tab number from
5 the next document you're asking for?
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: 1D2328 is the statement of Mr. -- of the witness.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yeah. It's -- tab -- tab 31, yes?
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It is tab 31, that is correct.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: It is said to be confidential on your list. On
10 your exhibit list it is said to be confidential. Little bit surprising,
11 but I will check.
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, that's correct. That's correct. It should
13 not be -- it should not be --
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: It should not be broadcasted.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: -- broadcast, yes.
16 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, we don't understand that any
17 protective measures have been applied for this witness and --
18 JUDGE DELVOIE: That's right.
19 MR. GILLETT: -- so we don't understand why his statement would
20 be confidential and not broadcast.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I agree that -- I think it was an error that this
22 particular statement was put as a confidential.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: An error on your list, you mean or
24 whatever other --
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes, yes. It was our --
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. I was a little bit confused as well.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: So we do agree there is no reason to have it
4 confidential. Okay --
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Correct.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: -- then we can broadcast it. Thank you.
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Can we please look at paragraph 4 of your statement. I believe
9 you wanted to make some corrections considering the schools you finished.
10 Would you tell us what those corrections are.
11 A. It's a lower music school, not higher music school.
12 Q. In the same paragraph, in the last sentence it says that up to
13 1990 you had been living for five years in Dalj. You want to correct
15 A. I always lived in Dalj except that I travelled very often for my
16 work and I would be away for five or six months at a time, and this text
17 reads as if I had lived only for five years in Dalj by 1990. I lived in
18 Dalj all the time.
19 Q. Could we now look at paragraph 6. In the second sentence it says
20 you joined the SDS because the programme of the party, which was
21 democratic and nationalist but not chauvinistic. What did you want to
22 correct here?
23 A. I just wanted to have it described as national, not nationalist.
24 Because nationalist has a connotation of chauvinistic. It's bordering on
25 chauvinistic. What I meant to say was national programme.
1 Q. Could you describe briefly your understanding of the difference
2 between "national" and "nationalist."
3 A. It's the same as if you say a Serbian person and a great Serb.
4 It kind of borders on chauvinistic.
5 Q. In paragraph 19, which is on the next page, paragraph 11, you can
6 see it in front of you. It refers to a baptism ceremony. What did you
7 mean to say? What kind of baptism ceremony?
8 A. It says at this meeting of the SDS [as interpreted] we organised
9 the baptism for the Serbian singing society, Lira, Lira.
10 Q. Could you just repeat the name?
11 A. It was the Serbian singing society, Lira, L-i-r-a.
12 Q. I believe there's another mistake here. Did you say it was a
13 meeting of the SDS or another party?
14 A. It was a meeting of the HDZ, Croatian Democratic Union.
15 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It seems that ... Your Honours, I noted one error
16 in the transcript in line 8. When I asked after my question could you
17 just repeat the name, the answer was -- it was the Serbian singing
18 society of the Lira. It was not my question.
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Noted.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: And after that is my question. I believe that
21 there is another mistake here.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: So that would be a new -- a new question; right?
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Yes.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Correct.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thanks.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation.
3 Q. In paragraph 21, which is on the next page, you said, among other
4 things, that to this day you are still not sure what the aims of the
5 Serbian Autonomous District of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem were
6 because at the beginning there were no clear objectives. What did you
7 mean to correct here?
8 A. There's some confusion here. What I meant is that objectives
9 existed. One objective was cultural autonomy, but it has to do with the
10 Serbian Krajina when the SBS -- when the SBWS loses its purpose, its
12 Q. Were there some objectives related to the outcome of the
14 A. Yes. After we got the results of the referendum, we just
15 continued pursuing the same policy.
16 Q. And what was decided at the referendum? What was the question?
17 A. I remember the referendum: That Serbs were a constituent people
18 and they want cultural autonomy.
19 Q. Do you recall a referendum as to whether the Serbs want to remain
20 within Yugoslavia or be annexed to some other country?
21 A. No, no, no. We always wanted to remain within Yugoslavia.
22 Q. Could we now look at paragraph 25.
23 MR. GILLETT: Sorry to interrupt, and this could wait for -- for
24 cross-examination to clarify. But just before we move on to the next
25 paragraph, the witness said at line 4 of page 8:
1 "One objective was cultural autonomy but it has to do with the
2 Serbian Krajina when the SBS -- when the SBWS loses its purpose, its
4 And I'm just wondering if we could clarify the time-frame that
5 we're talking about here in relation to the comments on this paragraph.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can we go back to the previous
7 paragraph, number 21.
8 Q. When you said what is stated in this paragraph -- first of all,
9 did you say it in these terms?
10 A. Possibly. But I kind of trail off sometimes and the interpreters
11 must have a hard time. Can I answer now?
12 Q. Go ahead, please.
13 A. It's a later period of the Republic of Serbian Krajina because it
14 was proclaimed at a later stage. So quite naturally, the
15 Serbian District does not have the same status in terms of its president
16 and its government.
17 Q. We'll come back to this later. It's enough for now.
18 Please look at paragraph 23. It says that the election of
19 Goran Hadzic as president was a sign that he had some connections and
20 contacts in Serbia.
21 When you talk about the election of Goran Hadzic as president,
22 did you mean president of the government; that is to say, prime minister
23 of the SBWS, or the president of the Republic of Serbian Krajina, or
25 A. No, not both. I meant president of the Republic of Serbian
2 Q. In paragraph 25 it says that while you were living in Dalj, one
3 day you were taken to the police station. You wanted to specify which
4 police station.
5 A. It was the police station of Osijek, 25 kilometres from Dalj.
6 Q. Paragraph 28, about the action to take Dalj. I believe that you
7 wanted to say something about the date, about the time when you arrived
8 from Serbia in Borovo Selo.
9 A. Yes. I did not arrive on the 1st of August but on the 31st of
11 Q. I believe that you also wanted to say something about the date in
12 paragraph 29. Again, this date has to do with the action in Dalj.
13 A. Instead of the 2nd of August, it should read the 1st of August.
14 Q. In the same paragraph, paragraph 29, it says that on that day you
15 returned to Dalj. What did you mean by that?
16 A. I suppose that while I was talking, this is how it was translated
17 or interpreted. I had left almost a month before that, and that's why I
18 thought it would be a good thing that -- to say that I returned. In any
19 case, on that day I entered Dalj.
20 Q. And let's link that to the previous paragraph. You're actually
21 describing one and the same event in paragraphs 28 and 29, if I
22 understood you properly?
23 A. Yes, but the dates are different. The first date is the 31st of
24 July, and the second date is the 1st of August.
25 Q. In paragraph 33, which is on the following page, you describe the
1 transport of corpses which took place after the fighting around Dalj.
2 You wanted to tell us how that transport was organised. Can you do that
4 A. The military negotiated the transport of corpses from Dalj.
5 Cooler trucks arrived from Osijek together with ambulances, and they
6 transported some of the corpses, whereas some still remained in Dalj.
7 The corpses that remained there were there throughout the afternoon. We
8 buried those people in the Catholic cemetery because they were all
9 Catholics, Croats. That's the only thing that we could do for these
11 Q. When you say that the military negotiated the transport of
12 corpses, who did they negotiate with?
13 A. I don't know that. But everything was under the military
14 command, and none of the locals could talk to the other side, to the
15 people from Osijek. The only body that could do that was the military.
16 I don't know who they negotiated with.
17 Q. My question may have been a bit ambiguous. I didn't mean the
18 person. I meant the party. Did they negotiate with a civilian body in
19 Dalj or with a body from outside of the territory?
20 A. In Dalj, you couldn't talk to the civilian authorities because
21 there were none. The local community had stopped existing. There was
22 only the military.
23 Q. You mentioned cooler trucks and ambulances that had arrived from
24 Osijek. Who controlled Osijek at the time?
25 A. The Croatian side controlled Osijek. Although Yugoslavia still
1 existed at the time, we thought that Osijek was controlled by Croats.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] And now can we look at
3 paragraph 35.
4 Q. In paragraph 35, it says:
5 "During my term in the government, there was no general policy in
6 the government of the SAO SBWS on the presence of non-Serbs in the area.
7 I think that the policy was for everyone to remain where they were. As
8 for Goran Hadzic, I don't know whether he had an opinion on this issue."
9 Could you please specify?
10 A. During my term in the government, we didn't discuss the policy of
11 resettlement, expulsion, or the departure of Croats from their places of
12 residence. Besides, many were from mixed marriages so it would have not
13 made much sense for anybody to move out or to be expelled.
14 And as for Mr. Goran Hadzic, I don't know if he had a different
15 opinion. Even if he did, I never heard him talk about that.
16 Q. Did the government have a specific policy towards the Serbs who
17 resided there as opposed to the non-Serbs who resided there? How did the
18 government treat all the citizens who lived in the area?
19 A. The government did not make a distinction. Nobody was asked to
20 declare themselves either as a -- Serbs, Croats, or Hungarians. They
21 were all equal.
22 Q. Did the government pursue different policies towards the Serbs as
23 opposed to the non-Serbs?
24 A. No, the government did not deal with that issue at all.
25 Q. In paragraph 44, you were shown a document dated 5 October 1991.
1 Milorad Stricevic signed it as the chief of security? You said that you
2 had never heard of that incident which is mentioned in the document. How
3 did Milorad Stricevic introduce himself in Dalj? As the chief of
4 security or differently?
5 A. From the very outset, he introduced him as a colonel. All of us
6 locals didn't know whether he was really a colonel or not. To this very
7 day, I don't know. I know for a fact that he was not a member of the
8 military because he did some other things. I know -- I knew him from
9 before the war. I don't know how he happened to be there.
10 Q. In paragraph 47, you talk about a meeting in Vukovar when members
11 of the government met at Velepromet. First of all, when you say that you
12 were delayed by about two to three minutes, is that correct?
13 A. May I? Last time when I testified I thought it was two to three
14 minutes, but it must have been 10 to 15 minutes. I had to go to the
15 church, I had to load some books and other things into my car, so it must
16 have been 10 to 15 minutes, not two to three minutes. That would have
17 been too short.
18 Q. In the first sentence in paragraph 47, you say that it was not a
19 government session. What was it? What took place at Velepromet?
20 A. I'm sure that it was not a government session. If it had been a
21 government session, I would have received an invitation to the government
22 session. It was just a meeting. I did not even know that it would be at
23 Velepromet. I thought would take place anywhere in the -- in liberated
24 Vukovar. There would have been an agenda. There was none. No minutes
25 were taken. The meeting -- minutes of the previous session were not
1 adopted. It did not look like a government session. It did not have the
2 form of a government session.
3 Q. In paragraph 48, it says, inter alia, that you didn't know what
4 military was there. What did you mean when you said that you didn't
6 A. I was misinterpreted. I meant unit. It could have been the
7 Novi Sad Corps or the guards unit, and then you would have known who the
8 commander was. When I read this, it seems that I didn't even know what
9 army was there, which is not true.
10 Q. In the same paragraph, you say that at that meeting nobody
11 mentioned Ovcara or the establishment of prison or a detention facility
12 for temporary accommodation of prisoners and that you heard that for the
13 first time during the interview. Did you mean the interview with the
15 A. Yes, that's what I meant.
16 Q. Did they tell you that?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. You also say in this paragraph that there were talks about the
19 construction of a prison in Beli Manastir, that you were aware of that.
20 Let's be more precise. Was that discussed at the meeting at Velepromet
21 or elsewhere, at some other meetings of the government beforehand or
23 A. That was discussed at other meetings of the government. On that
24 day, nobody mentioned the construction of a prison in Beli Manastir.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] And now let's look at
1 paragraph -- paragraphs 56 and 57.
2 Q. First of all, do you remember this part where you say that
3 various statements were read to you after they had been given by members
4 of the JNA. And I'm talking about that interview.
5 A. You know what? That was a long time ago, so I don't remember.
6 It was quite a number of years ago. I don't know what was read to me at
7 the time. I can't stand by this. I'm under oath. I can't confirm what
8 it says here because I'm not sure that it is true.
9 Q. I asked you to look at paragraph 56. Does that also apply to the
10 following paragraph where some statements are mentioned as well, also
11 given by JNA officers?
12 A. Paragraphs 56 and 57 are closely linked. I simply can't remember
13 that anything was read out to me. I really can't stand by these two
14 paragraphs because I don't remember.
15 Q. In paragraph 60, you were asked about the -- the destruction of
16 the -- Orthodox and Catholic churches in Tovarnik or, rather, the damages
17 they sustained. In the last sentence, you mentioned a third side which
18 may have been to blame for the damages to the Catholic church. What did
19 you have in mind when you mentioned a third side?
20 A. I mean -- I meant atheists; non-believers.
21 Q. Please look at paragraph 65. You meant to say here or, rather,
22 you -- you wanted to say about Hadzic's visits to Milosevic. Do you
23 remember the periods when that happened?
24 A. Yes, I remember that was when pressures were put to bear on to
25 adopt the Vance-Owen Plan. That may have been some time after new year,
1 and the year I have in mind is the year 1992.
2 Q. Since it says here, if you read it you will find it, that during
3 the time you were a minister in the government of the SAO SBWS,
4 Goran Hadzic often said that he had travelled to Belgrade and visited
5 Slobodan Milosevic. Does that mean that those visits to Slobodan
6 Milosevic happened during that period when peacekeeping forces arrived
7 and when the Vance-Owen Plan was discussed?
8 A. Yes, that's the period I had in mind. Although I became minister
9 before that, that's the period I had in mind.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] And now let's look at
11 paragraph 66.
12 Q. I believe you wanted to make a correction there. You said it was
13 your belief that Goran Hadzic was under somebody's influence. What did
14 you mean to say?
15 A. He looked very scared to me.
16 Q. Thank you. In paragraph 71 of your statement, you noticed that
17 one word you used to refer to the church official who was in Dalj was not
18 adequately phrased. What was that word?
19 A. It was the Orthodox "vladika."
20 Q. Which paragraph is that? In the translation, the word is bishop,
21 if you remember.
22 A. "Vladika" is not bishop. Bishop is a Catholic term. I'm not
23 saying that bishop is an ugly word, but we just should make the
25 Q. And you said you would like to clarify one more thing here. It
1 says that Arkan and his men were accommodated near the school. First of
2 all, which was place were we talking about? Which town?
3 A. I was talking about Dalj. Arkan and his men were based Erdut,
4 but two or three of his men guarded the residence of the patriarch where
5 "vladika" was staying and that is close to the school. That's what I
6 meant to say.
7 Q. To get a better understanding of this, what is "vladika"?
8 A. "Vladika" is the highest rank, like in the army. Below him are
9 lower-ranking priests. He lives like a monk. He's totally devoted to
10 the church. He doesn't get married. He's devoted to the church and the
12 Q. In your understanding, was there any need for Arkan's Men to
13 guard the vladika? Was he threatened in any way so as to need security?
14 A. That's precisely what bothered me. He was not threatened. There
15 was nobody to threatened him.
16 MR. GILLETT: Objection. There was a leading question there. I
17 understand these are corrections to the statement, but that was a leading
18 question that went beyond the content that's already in the statement.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: That's correct, indeed. Sorry. I'll not put
20 this question in this context. I'll ask the witness something else.
21 Q. [Interpretation] You said in the same paragraph that the army was
22 disciplined. Which army did you mean?
23 A. If I'm referring to Arkan here, then I meant Arkan and his army.
24 Q. And what did you mean by saying that the troops were disciplined
25 but the people felt uncomfortable?
1 A. As far as the troops are concerned, they didn't make any
2 problems. But the people believed that it was a place of worship that
3 should be free of troops, soldiers, and weapons, and if somebody needed
4 to protect it, we, the people, were there to protect it. I had a feeling
5 that he was being somehow supervised.
6 Q. Look at paragraph 71. It says:
7 "The troops were very disciplined, but the soldiers who, as part
8 of their training, ran through the village, had an unsettling effect."
9 A. It says again that his troops were disciplined, but every morning
10 as part of their training about 50 of them would run through Dalj and
11 ordinary people would feel intimidated. It seemed to them they were in a
12 kind of barracks.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Let us look at paragraph 73.
14 Q. In our proofing session, we read this paragraph as well. We
15 compared it with your resignation. First of all, does this
16 paragraph faithfully reflect what you said in your interview with the
17 investigators or has something been left out?
18 A. It doesn't faithfully reflect what I said because this is about
19 the speaker of the assembly, and this paragraph makes it sound as if it
20 were about the prime minister. One of the reasons for my resignations --
21 one of the reasons for my resignation were the statements made by the
22 president, et cetera, et cetera. It sounds from this as if it were the
23 prime minister.
24 Q. So you mean that the word "president" should be followed by "of
25 the assembly"?
1 A. Precisely.
2 Q. Is that written in your resignation? We will look at it a bit
3 later. But is it clearly written in your letter of resignation?
4 A. My letter of resignation makes it perfectly clear.
5 Q. If the same questions were put to you today, would you give the
6 same answers as in this statement with the corrections you have just made
7 today and which have been recorded, save for the two paragraphs that you
8 said you couldn't stand by. That's paragraphs 56 and 57.
9 A. With those corrections, yes.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, I would tender this evidence
11 into -- this document into evidence.
12 MR. GILLETT: I may have missed it, but I understand there's also
13 a second question required before admission of 92 ter statements about
14 the contents of the statement.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Indeed, Mr. Gillett.
16 Mr. Zivanovic.
17 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Can you confirm that otherwise what is written in your statement
19 is accurate with the corrections just made?
20 A. I'm sorry, I didn't understand.
21 Q. Our Rules require you to say whether the answers you gave in this
22 statement, including the corrections you've made today, are accurate.
23 A. Yes, with the corrections, they are accurate.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I would tender this document into evidence.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
1 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D187, Your Honours.
2 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Mr. Milinkovic, I will start with the last question we discussed;
5 that is, your letter of resignation described in paragraph 73.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we see 1D2 -- no, 1D1264.
7 Tab 22.
8 Q. Is this the letter of resignation we discussed?
9 A. Yes, it is.
10 Q. It says here that on 27 October you submitted your resignation as
11 minister for culture and religion in the government of Slavonia, Baranja,
12 and Western Srem, that it was not given consideration, and you are
13 resubmitting it. I will quote the passage that I'm interested in. You
15 "I cite as the most important reasons for my resignation the
16 statements of -- the statements made by members of the government, some
17 members of the government and the president of the assembly without prior
18 consultation with the prime minister and without any stance taken by the
19 assembly or the government on key and decisive issues for the Serbian
20 people in this district and the Serbian Krajina."
21 Was this the passage that you referred to when you said in
22 paragraph 73 that the reasons were not correctly stated?
23 A. Yes, that's precisely what I meant.
24 Q. And it says at the end:
25 "I believe that these and similar acts amount to ignoring the
1 assembly, the government, and the prime minister..."
2 Is this what you meant when you were talking about paragraph 73?
3 A. Yes, yes.
4 Q. Who was the president of the assembly at that time, the person
5 you referred to in this statement without naming him?
6 A. It was Ilija Koncarevic.
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, I would tender this document into
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D188, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Mr. Milinkovic, since you lived in Dalj, first of all, tell us:
14 How long have you lived in Dalj?
15 A. From 1955 to 1996.
16 Q. Was Dalj an ethnically mixed community?
17 A. Yes, it was.
18 Q. What were interethnic relations like, and if they were good,
19 until when?
20 A. Interethnic relations were good. There were many ethnically
21 mixed marriages. There had never been any problems. There were Serbs,
22 Croats, Hungarians, some Ruthenians, and there had never been any
23 problems until the HDZ came into power.
24 Q. I ask you to speak a little more slowly. What happened exactly
25 after the HDZ came into power? How did the interethnic relations
2 A. I talk about Dalj because I lived there.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gillett.
4 MR. GILLETT: The question has a leading aspect in saying that
5 the relations deteriorated which hadn't yet come out in the evidence.
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: [Overlapping speakers] ...
7 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It -- it -- but it refers from his previous
8 answer, that the -- these relations were good until HDZ came to the
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Overruled. Please continue, Mr. Zivanovic.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Shall I repeat the question or you remember it?
13 A. No need. I can talk about Dalj and the area surrounding it.
14 Everything was fine even after the local HDZ was established. We, the
15 residents of Dalj, did not have our SDS party. At the time of the
16 elections, we voted for the SDP. But we felt cheated because we had been
17 removed from the constitution as a constituent people and many people
18 started losing their jobs, being dismissed just because they were Serbs.
19 Mistreatment began. Cars were stopped carrying Serbs. The cars
20 were searched. People were searched. Then they started admitting onto
21 the police force people with a problematic past. For instance, in Dalj,
22 an unprecedented thing happened when a man was killed with an axe and the
23 person responsible was just allowed to go scot-free, and he was later
24 admitted into the police, and people understood it as a threat. Another
25 case I can tell you about is when Ivan Andabak returned. He was a
1 Ustasha emigre, and he came to Dalj. By night, people were going about
2 carrying rifles, driving about in a van with open doors. Sometimes
3 haystacks were set on fire. People were brought into the police station,
4 taken into custody. Once I was taken into custody.
5 At the police station in Osijek, I was treated quite well
6 regularly. I can't complain. But bar brawls also became more frequent.
7 I went to see the president of the HDZ to talk to him because I knew the
8 man. We had been to school together. I thought these things would stop.
9 However, assassinations began as well. Somebody shot Zivko Peulic in
10 Osijek. Then another man in Brsadin, then Jovo, Rajkica was killed on
11 his own balcony. We don't know to this day who the shooter was. And
12 Serbs began to join the SDS en masse, although the SDS was not the only
13 party they could join, but people started joining the SDS en masse.
14 And there's another example. At that time I wrote the statute
15 and we held a founding assembly for the Serbian singing society Lira, and
16 the statute was printed in the Cyrillic script, and I went to Osijek to
17 register it. They just sneered at it and refused to register us. So we
18 went on working without the proper license. I did not want to print our
19 programme in the Latin script, although that is something I use when I
20 write something by hand, even today.
21 Q. With regard to your last answer, why wouldn't they register your
23 A. Because the statute was drafted in the Cyrillic script and that
24 the proposed name was the Serbian singing association. They did not want
25 to accept the Cyrillic script although Yugoslavia still existed and both
1 the letters, the Latinic script and the Cyrillic script, were supposed to
2 be equally represented.
3 Q. You said that people started going about with rifles and other
4 long-barreled arms. Who were those people? How did they treat the
5 citizens of Dalj?
6 A. They were arrogant. When I say arrogant, I mean they did not
7 ill-treat people but they demonstrated their power. In Erdut they had
8 their own camp. I don't know whether they were HOS members or who they
9 were. I really don't know the name of that group of people.
10 Q. Did they cause fear among the Serbs in Dalj?
11 A. Yes, fear, anguish, anger. All of a sudden people started
12 flocking together. I have to tell you that I was stopped by the police
13 several times. My car was searched. The last time that happened I was
14 taken to the Dalj police station from Erdut, and after that I just
15 couldn't take it any longer. I left Dalj about a month and a half before
16 it was liberated.
17 Q. You mean a month and a half before the 1st of August?
18 A. Yes, precisely.
19 Q. Did you leave on your own or with your family?
20 A. My whole family. My wife, my daughter, and myself.
21 Q. Where did you go?
22 A. To Belgrade to stay with a friend.
23 Q. After your departure for Belgrade, did you occasionally return to
24 the territory?
25 A. Yes, I did go to Borovo Selo but never to Dalj before it was
1 liberated. I arrived in Borovo Selo with the barge.
2 Q. You were in the area when the incident in Borovo Selo happened on
3 the 2nd of May, 1991. Were you in Dalj at the time?
4 A. I was in Dalj on that day. However, since Dalj is not a big
5 place, rumours spread very fast about Borovo having been attacked. We
6 didn't know why. Shooting already started. The distance between Dalj
7 and Savulja is 4 kilometres, and that was where shooting started. I
8 organised 100 people without any arms to go there, to see whether we
9 could stop the shooting in a peaceful manner, to resolve the situation if
10 there was anything to be resolved. We failed in our attempt. We got to
11 the Croatian side but we could not proceed. We were forced to sit down
12 on the asphalt road. That's how the whole thing ended. Later on I heard
13 that some people had gotten killed.
14 Q. Do you remember how that incident in Borovo Selo reflected on the
15 locals of Dalj?
16 A. Yes, I remember. And I learned only later that some people from
17 Dalj did not join me on foot but that -- rather, they got onto boats and
18 they went along the river to Borovo Selo to help. There was war in --
19 in -- in the offing. Barricades were erected. People started flocking
20 together along the ethnic lines. Serbs communicated only with other
21 Serbs, Croats with other Croats, and there was a visible ethnical
22 division after that.
23 Q. After the incident in Borovo Selo, do you know whether that had
24 an impact on the relationship between the people in Dalj and particularly
25 on the attitude of HDZ members towards Serbs?
1 A. It had already started happening before but all of a sudden
2 things came to a head. Those people became more savage, barricades were
3 erected by Bijelo Brdo, and then a Croatian unit started attacking
4 Bijelo Brdo. I don't know what unit that was. In any case, there were a
5 lot more individual incidents.
6 Q. Could you please repeat the -- what you said about Bijelo Brdo,
7 for the sake of the transcript.
8 A. Yes, I don't mind.
9 Q. And please slow down.
10 A. Of course. Very well. After the barricades in Borovo Selo, the
11 other villages also started erecting their own barricades. One of them
12 was at Bijelo Brdo. There was a unit in Erdut, I don't know what unit
13 that was, also attacked Bijelo Brdo. There was shooting. There were
14 people wounded. Many people who worked at Borovo stopped going to work.
15 Also those who worked in Osijek. There were a lot of incidents that just
16 could not be prevented.
17 Q. Just one more question about that. Why did people stop going to
18 work in Borovo and Osijek?
19 A. Fear. Fear was the cause.
20 Q. Did anybody have any bad experience?
21 A. Some people from Dalj did go to Osijek but they ended up being
22 arrested. I remember a man called Sobota who worked at an insurance
23 company and he was arrested in Osijek. People were taken to the police
24 station quite often, and people start fearing that.
25 Q. You participated in the battle for Dalj on the 1st of August,
1 1991. Can you describe your participation in that?
2 A. I did participate in my own way. We all participated in
3 different ways.
4 On the 31st of July late in the afternoon, I arrived Borovo Selo.
5 However, in the evening people started gathering around the sports hall,
6 and rumours started spreading about people going to liberate Dalj. I was
7 among those people. I was standing there as well. I remember
8 Marko Loncarevic who was also there, and also Sinisa Kazevic [phoen].
9 They were in the very centre of that group. And also I remember Jovica
10 Vucenovic. They seemed to have been in control, giving orders. There
11 were also some other officers whose names I don't know.
12 Q. When you say officers were there, were they active-duty officers,
13 reserve officers?
14 A. I can't tell you who an active officer was and who wasn't because
15 they wore the same uniforms. But I remember a man whose family name was
16 Bencer [phoen]. He was an active-duty officer.
17 Q. Could you please repeat the name?
18 A. I believe that his name was Bencer.
19 Q. Please continue.
20 A. I'm a musician and I was opposed to arms. I didn't want to be a
21 hunter. I just don't like arms. Like some people don't like football, I
22 don't like weapons.
23 Marko Loncarevic told me, "Boro, you're going drive a truck."
24 "Very well," said I. I went to fetch the truck that I was assigned. The
25 truck was loaded. I didn't inspect it. There were two trucks. I drove
1 one of them and Mirko Puvaca drove the other. I was assigned a location
2 and the location was Lovas.
3 Q. Let's specify. When you say Lovas, is that a place or something
5 A. I was just going to say that Lovas is a farm, a cattle farm.
6 It's a farm between Dalj and Savulja, i.e., between Dalj and Borovo Selo.
7 I arrived there. I parked the truck by a canal and I got stuck
8 there. I was looking for something to wedge a wheel and it was only then
9 that I saw weapons, and then I remember that Mirko actually wanted to
10 play a game on me. He knew I didn't like arms, so he gave me a truck
11 full of arms to drive. He -- he was just joking with me.
12 Q. In your statement, you described the whole Dalj action in great
13 detail. I don't want you to repeat any of that. Did you participate in
14 the fighting? Did you use weapons during that action?
15 A. I drove a -- a -- the truck. The action was in the direction of
16 Dalj and there was shooting from Dalj. I couldn't go there by truck
17 because the truck was full of weapons. I could not personally
18 participate in the fighting. I could only enter Dalj once it was calm.
19 I was assigned a location. It was the playground in Dalj. I was
20 supposed to bring the truck over there, and somebody was supposed to take
21 it over from me. I wasn't informed who that person would be.
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Mr. President, I see the time.
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you, Mr. Zivanovic.
24 Mr. Milinkovic, we take the first break, 30 minutes. That means
25 that we will be back at 11.00.
1 Court adjourned.
2 [The witness stands down]
3 --- Recess taken at 10.29 a.m.
4 --- On resuming at 11.00 a.m.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours, when I tendered the document
6 1D2328, it was the statement of the witness, I did not mention 2328.1.
7 It was actually a part of this statement. So I would tender this
8 document too.
9 MR. GILLETT: And just to clarify for the record: In
10 Your Honours' decision of 3 September 2014 on this witness, you specified
11 that the Prosecution 65 ter document 2508 would be the photo booklet
12 attached to this witness's statement. I understand it's the same as the
13 1D2328.1 that my learned friend has just mentioned and on that basis, of
14 course, we have no objection.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
16 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D189.187, Your Honours.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
18 [The witness takes the stand]
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Zivanovic.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
21 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Milinkovic, you were part of the government
22 for a while of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srem. Could you specify
23 the time-period and your post, your position in the government?
24 A. I can't remember the exact dates. I was nominated to become
25 minister of culture and religion, and I accepted this position. Members
1 of the National Council, when nominated by the assembly onto that
2 government, I accepted the nomination, and that is -- that's it.
3 Q. Where was the first headquarters of the government?
4 A. First it was in Dalj in the library, but it was impossible to
5 work there. There were 15 ministries and only one telephone. And the
6 premises were not adequate for the work of the government, so the
7 government moved to Erdut to the building known as Dvorac, the mansion,
8 whereas I stayed in the library in Dalj to be closer to my locals and to
9 keep the library safe from looting.
10 Q. Do you remember maybe when the government moved to Erdut?
11 A. About 15 days after it was established. Maybe even within ten
13 Q. In what circumstances did the government work?
14 A. Well, it would be more true to say that it didn't work. It
15 didn't have any founding documents. We just had these ministries. We
16 didn't have a grass-root basis. We started from scratch. Everybody had
17 to first form their ministry, beginning with the deputy minister,
18 assistants, staff, et cetera, and only then could we move on to enacting
19 regulations and documents.
20 Q. Did the government manage to do anything during its short tenure?
21 A. Yes, yes, it did. I can only speak about my ministry. I didn't
22 have any an insight into the work of other ministries except for the
23 reports regularly submitted at government sessions.
24 Q. Can you tell us about your ministry? What was done within your
1 A. First of all we needed to tour all the museums, all the churches,
2 to assess the damage and to repair it as far as possible, to appoint
3 directors to museums, inspection authorities, and we have managed to done
4 all that. It was quite a lot.
5 Q. Did the government have any tools to enforce its decisions? Did
6 it have agencies that would pass on its orders to the local authorities
7 in villages and towns?
8 A. That's what I just said. We didn't have local communes. We had
9 Territorial Defence Staffs in many villages over which we didn't have
10 jurisdiction. The army had jurisdiction. Where we had local communes,
11 we collaborated with them. I can give you the example of Dalj. We had a
12 local commune but it was not operative. So the minister himself had to
13 go and visit each place. It was very difficult.
14 Q. Speaking about the army, can you tell us when did the army
15 arrive? From what time did it have a presence in SBWS?
16 A. The army had always been there. Beginning with the 1st of
17 August in Dalj, there was an army presence.
18 Q. Does the name Radovan Stojicic, Badza, tell you anything; and, if
19 it is familiar, did you have occasion to meet him?
20 A. I did have occasion to see Badza but I was never introduced to
21 him. I didn't have much contact with him. I know that he was
22 appointed - although not by us - as commander of the Territorial Defence.
23 I don't know who appointed him. He arrived sometime after the government
24 was established. I met him in Erdut.
25 Q. Can you tell us, in broad terms, what did these sessions of the
1 SBWS government look like?
2 A. They were very serious, beginning with the security around the
3 building. We always got invitations from the secretary. We always had
4 an agenda. First we would read the record from the previous session, and
5 if there were no objections it would be adopted, and that would be
6 followed by reports from various ministers describing work progress.
7 Q. Can you remember, did you attend all the sessions?
8 A. I always tried to attend. I can't guarantee that I attended
9 every single one, but I tried to.
10 Q. Who chaired the sessions?
11 A. Goran Hadzic. Or sometimes his deputy, Mr. Sabljakovic.
12 Sometimes due to the nature of his work he was away and his deputy
13 prime minister chaired the sessions but it was only rarely.
14 Q. In addition to you, members of the cabinet, did anyone else come
15 to these sessions of the government?
16 A. Yes. Mr. Stojicic. There was one colonel, Ristic.
17 Mr. Savo Stupar. I remember once even Mr. Raznjatovic came. Then
18 Mr. Zavisic. And they didn't come all together. One of them would
19 usually would come. I had the impression that they might have been even
20 monitoring our work, keeping an eye on us. They didn't have anything in
21 common. They were neither all from the army or all from the police.
22 There would be even a representative of the Assembly of Vojvodina
24 Q. Did you receive a salary while you were minister?
25 A. No, I never worked for a salary. I only once got coupons for
1 petrol that I collected in order to be able to pay the wages of the
2 people who were working cleaning up the museum in Vukovar. That's the
3 only thing I collected. Otherwise I worked without a salary. And I must
4 say that the money that I received, I got from Mr. Milanovic. I don't
5 know where he got it from.
6 Q. When you said this money went for the cleaning up of the museum
7 in Vukovar, did you mean that it was after the combat in Vukovar?
8 A. Yes, it was after the liberation of Vukovar.
9 Q. Mr. Milinkovic, do you remember in October 1991, was there some
10 kind of mutiny among the members of the Territorial Defence in Dalj?
11 A. I remember. I remember it because I was at home that night, and
12 somebody came and told me that the men from Dalj had retreated from the
13 line. They don't want to go to the front line. Our stretch was from
14 Trpinja to Borovo. That area had to be liberated. The Trpinja road.
15 And the next day, they mutinied against the army. In fact, against the
16 command. Because every day a stretch of 2 kilometres would be liberated.
17 These people would go back. Some people would get killed. And then the
18 next day they would have to go and liberate the same stretch again.
19 That's why people mutinied. And it was an assembly near the market-place
20 where everything happened. Badza was there and Arkan was there too.
21 Badza probably as the commander of the TO and Arkan as an authority.
22 This is not to detract the authority of Mr. Badza. That's not what I
24 Q. When you said it was a protest against the command, which
1 A. You see, my family believed that at that time even they didn't
2 know who was the command. They were under the command of the army, and
3 they protested against the army. They wanted somebody to put some order
4 into how the -- this war was waged instead of go forward and then pull
5 back, because they were commanded by JNA officers.
6 Q. Could you just explain what does it mean stop and go, and pull
7 back? I mean, I understand what you mean, but I'd like everybody in the
8 courtroom to understand as well.
9 A. The men were sent every morning to a certain point, and from
10 point A to point B, there were some 5 kilometres that needed to be
11 liberated. So they do it. They go from A to B and liberate it. Then
12 they leave this space empty and go home. And the next day, they do the
13 same job again. But all this time, every day, it costs some lives, and
14 that's why they mutinied.
15 Q. If I understand you well, between that point A, as you said, and
16 point B, there was some fighting involved in order to get to point B?
17 A. Yes, that's how it is in war.
18 Q. And for what reason did these men who reached point B go back?
19 A. They went back because that was the orders given, and that's why
20 they protested against the command.
21 Q. So if I understand you correctly, the next day they would get
22 orders to go again to fight in order to reach point B, the one they had
23 reached earlier?
24 A. Correct.
25 Q. So they were thinking that they were making sacrifices for
2 A. Precisely.
3 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, that last question was leading and
4 also was asking the witness to speculate on what other people were
5 thinking, so I'd object to that one.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I rephrase my question.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: [Microphone not activated]
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. What are these people protesting against on that occasion?
10 A. I just told you that the night before I had been in Trpinja. I
11 had travelled there in my own car because I had heard that the men in
12 Dalj had mutinied. It was not my department, but I was just concerned
13 because Dalj was my home town. And then I heard that they mutinied
14 because, as they told me in their own words, they were going to be asked
15 the next day to liberate the same area again, the same stretch.
16 Q. Did they talk about the sacrifices they were making, their
18 A. When you have soldiers gathered in one place, always somebody
19 from the back would shout something. I was not there, nor was the
20 government represented there. I don't know anything, save for what I
21 heard from my friends who were there. Many people were shouting the
22 names of their friends who had fallen, and they criticised many people,
23 like Milorad Stricevic.
24 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Let us now look at P115,
25 paragraph 111.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Tab number, please.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Oh, sorry. It is tab 38.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Now we have the text on the screen. You can see who wrote this
6 report, or rather you can see the body who issued it. One part has been
7 redacted. Let us look at the second paragraph where it says that:
8 "On Tuesday 15 October of this year in the morning hours around
9 300 members of the Dalj TO gathered and at gunpoint forced the members of
10 the Dalj staff and some ministers of the Slavonia, Baranja, and Western
11 Srem to line up before them. A petition on the unbearable living
12 conditions was read. It was said that the situation in Dalj was
14 Further on there is a reference to the members of the space
15 police. Further on, it is stated that they publicly accused
16 Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, of crimes committed against 40 prisoners. He
17 admitted the guilt, and he said that only the way in which they were
18 executed was in dispute.
19 Could you please tell us whether this report faithfully reflects
20 what happened at the time. If not, what part would you disagree with?
21 A. I was not there. However, I lived there, and I can tell you that
22 it is 100 per cent incorrect that they publicly accused him or brought
23 him out at gunpoint. TO members could not have done that. He came there
24 on his own with Badza.
25 As for some members of the TO Command, I believe that they were
1 all together in it. I don't know what Arkan was saying there. I believe
2 that some inflammatory words were said. And it is not ruled out, it
3 cannot be ruled out, that he did say what it says he did.
4 Q. According to what you know and the information you have, how come
5 that he found himself there? What is it that he actually said, according
6 to what you know?
7 A. His vocabulary was rather limited. He probably appeared there.
8 Now what he said, I don't know. I wasn't there so I hate to speculate
9 what he might have said. I don't know.
10 Q. Don't.
11 A. No, I would rather not.
12 Q. No, don't speculate.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation] Let's go to the following page,
15 Q. It says that the defence commander Badza was given an ultimatum
16 by the fighters to deal with the burning issues within 48 hours. If not,
17 they would take matters into their own hands. They would deal with the
18 people who were tarnishing the reputation of the place and who compounded
19 the situation with their psychotic behaviour. If the ultimatum was not
20 observed, the fighters threatened that they would form a court-martial.
21 Tell me please, according to what you know, did that happen? Did
22 you hear of that?
23 A. No, I never heard anybody mentioning a court-martial, nor was it
24 ever actually established. I don't know if anybody would have dared give
25 an ultimatum to Badza. He had such authority that I don't believe that
1 anybody could have spoken to him in that manner.
2 Q. Do you know that the commanders of TO units said that they would
3 undertake all the possible measures in order to normalise the situation,
4 and if Raznjatovic or some others who are -- is described here as
5 executors were to oppose them, that they would be done away with?
6 A. Again, it did not happen. It was just a rumour among the
7 fighters. Everybody gave themselves too much importance. This is a
8 report which I wouldn't say is very credible. I don't know. I don't
10 Q. I'm asking you this because you said that the fighters mutinied
11 against the JNA and the -- the orders of false starts and retreats.
12 There's nothing about that in this report. Were there perhaps two
13 different protested in Dalj or was there just this one?
14 A. I am aware of only that one, nothing else.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: [Microphone not activated]
16 MR. GILLETT: Sorry to interrupt. The question is leading in
17 saying that there is nothing about this in this, report and this is based
18 on the word "mutiny" which originally was inserted into the transcript by
19 the Defence counsel, so we would see this question as a leading question.
20 The word "mutiny" came in earlier in the transcript and was from a
21 question. It wasn't from the witness himself.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
23 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I rephrase the question.
24 Q. [Interpretation] How would you call the event that happened in
25 Dalj? How would you call the rally of about 300 members of the TO and
1 their requests?
2 A. A protest would be a different thing and it involves workers.
3 This was a mutiny of people who didn't want to carry out their tasks.
4 They simple didn't go to the front line on that day. You can call it
5 whatever: A mutiny, a protest. I know what it was all -- all about. I
6 am aware of that case when Arkan and Badza were present at that rally. I
7 don't know of any similar instances.
8 Q. When you resigned on the 27th of October - we don't have the
9 written text of that resignation - why did you decide to resign as early
10 as that on the 27th of October, only about a month into the functioning
11 of the government?
12 A. I'll give you a few examples. First of all, the government as
13 such did not have any authorities over the TO or the military. We were
14 actually like a local commune -- not even a local commune because a local
15 commune has some powers. For example, we were stopped on various roads
16 by the military. I was stopped on the way to Sodolovci by the army. I
17 told them who I was. But they laughed at my position. Effectively we
18 could not exert our authority over anybody or anything. The only thing
19 that remained for us to do was to deal with social issue, the life of
20 people. If there was a company still operating we could deal with those.
21 That's one of the reason -- reasons.
22 The second reason was that we could not exert any influence on
23 any of the events. We did not have any instruments at -- in place. We
24 did not have any information. We just relied on rumours, on talking to
25 people, so it was impossible to function. That was another reason. I
1 believe that in my resignation I stated that I was not in a position to
2 implement the programme of work in my -- within my purview. That --
3 those were the reasons.
4 Q. After your second resignation in January 1992, how long did you
5 keep coming to the government meetings?
6 A. I kept on attending for a couple of more times after I resigned.
7 And then I turned up once but they had already removed me from my
8 position. I didn't know that at the time.
9 Q. Just one more thing. After the government of the Republic of
10 Serbian Krajina was set up as well as the regional government of the
11 SBWS, did you have an office in the regional government or in the
12 republican government?
13 A. No, I did not have any positions or functions. I simply set up a
14 cultural centre in Dalj, and I remained working there as the CEO. I
15 stopped being involved in politics. I even funded the cultural centre
16 myself and I paid the workers from my own pocket.
17 Q. How long did you stay in Croatia?
18 A. Until 1996.
19 Q. And after that?
20 A. I moved to Novi Sad, or rather to Beocin. I have to tell you
21 that in 1995 I was in the regional government of Mr. Boro Dzajic [phoen]
22 but that was towards the end of 1995.
23 Q. Thank you, Mr. Milinkovic. I have no further questions for you.
24 A. Thank you.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gillett.
1 MR. GILLETT: If you'd just give me one minute to set up the
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Of course.
4 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours.
5 Cross-examination by Mr. Gillett:
6 Q. Good morning, Mr. Milinkovic. My name is Matthew Gillett. We
7 haven't met before. I'm going to ask you some questions on behalf of the
8 Office of the Prosecutor. If there is anything that is unclear, then
9 please request and I can clarify my question.
10 Firstly, just to check some of the dates. Do I understand
11 correctly that you were living in Dalj until after the Borovo Selo
12 incident in May 1991?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Then you said earlier today that you left from Dalj to Serbia
15 about a month and a half before the take-over of Dalj on 1st August. So
16 would that be sometime in June that you left to Serbia?
17 A. I can't remember when that was. It was just my estimate. I
18 estimated the time because I did not make any notes on which I could rely
19 to give you the exact dates.
20 Q. So your recollection of dates from that period is slightly vague;
22 A. Correct.
23 Q. Then in 1996, you left and moved to Novi Sad; is that correct?
24 A. Correct.
25 Q. And were you living there in 2003 when you gave the statement to
1 the Office of the Prosecutor that we've been referring to today?
2 A. [No interpretation]
3 Q. Sorry, could you repeat your answer?
4 A. I was in Beocin in 2003. So you mean Beocin.
5 Q. And, for the record, which country is that in?
6 A. Serbia.
7 Q. Thank you. I'm going ask you a question about the Velepromet
8 meeting of 20th November, 1991. You discussed that meeting in your
9 statement; correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. You assume that Arkan travelled with Goran Hadzic to that
12 meeting; correct?
13 A. I assumed because I saw them together. That doesn't mean that
14 they actually came together. It was just my assumption.
15 Q. My question was whether you made that assumption. And that is
16 correct; right?
17 What was -- sorry, could you say your answer for the record, not
18 just nodding the head?
19 A. It was my assumption. I assumed that they came together because
20 I saw them together. However, that doesn't necessarily mean that they
21 had arrived together. At that moment, I saw them together.
22 Q. My question is rather concentrated on why you assumed that they
23 travelled together. Now you've said today that it's because --
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It's asked and answers.
1 MR. GILLETT: Well, I haven't finished my question yet,
2 Your Honour.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please continue, Mr. --
4 Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
5 MR. GILLETT:
6 Q. So you said today it was because you saw them together and you
7 meant you saw them together at Velepromet; correct?
8 A. I saw them together. But that does not mean that they had come
10 Q. Again, my question is not about whether this was true or not.
11 It's the assumption. Now a Mr. Vojin Susa was also at the Velepromet
12 meeting; correct?
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. Do you assume that he came to the Velepromet meeting with
15 Goran Hadzic?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Mr. Miomir Crnogorac was also together with Goran Hadzic at the
18 Velepromet meeting; correct?
19 A. Yes, correct.
20 Q. Do you assume that he travelled with Goran Hadzic to the
21 Velepromet meeting?
22 A. It was possible, yes. But I never gave it a second thought.
23 Q. Do you think now that Miomir Crnogorac travelled with
24 Goran Hadzic to the Velepromet meeting?
25 A. No. I don't think anything. He could have arrived on his own.
1 I don't know. I'm not concerned. I don't think about that.
2 Q. What was it about the relationship between Hadzic and Arkan that
3 made you assume that they travelled to the meeting together?
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Asked and answered.
5 MR. GILLETT: Well, my question this time was focused on the
6 relationship between these two, and there is a basis in the statement for
7 asking this question.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed.
9 MR. GILLETT:
10 Q. Shall I repeat my question, or did you catch it?
11 A. I remember the question. My assumption was based on the fact
12 that they were standing together. A thought crossed my mind: They
13 probably arrived together. There was no any other special reason why
14 they should have been together, because I never saw Mr. Arkan as
15 Mr. Hadzic's escort, ever before that. That was the first time I ever
16 saw them together in a meeting or in a rally or anywhere.
17 Q. You assumed that they travelled together because they had a good
18 relationship together. That's right, isn't it?
19 A. Yes, they had a good relationship.
20 Q. And it's because they both travelled to the Velepromet meeting
21 from Erdut -- I'll repeat my question.
22 You assumed this also because they both travelled to the
23 Velepromet meeting from Erdut; correct?
24 A. I don't know whether they arrived together from Erdut. I don't
25 know that. I don't know. I simply can't say because Mr. Arkan could
1 have been in Vukovar as well. I know that he had participated in the
2 liberation of Vukovar. I don't know. I can't claim that they arrived
3 together. It was just my assumption. It -- it was my way of thinking at
4 the time. Nothing else.
5 Q. Mr. Milinkovic, you were a member of the Defence Staff in Dalj in
6 August 1991; correct?
7 A. No, never. I was never a member of a staff.
8 Q. Do you know who the members of the Dalj Defence Staff were in
9 August 1991?
10 A. I don't know all of them. I could perhaps remember two or three
11 people. Pavle Milovanovic, Djuras Marjanac [as interpreted], and Ilija
12 Mutevic [phoen]. I'm not even sure of his first name. I suppose it's
14 Q. Could it be Ilija Utovic?
15 A. Utovic, yes. Utovic.
16 Q. What about Nikola Trbic was he a member?
17 A. I don't know. I used to see him at the staff. But I don't know
18 what his position was. I don't know. I did see him in the staff which
19 does not mean that he was a member of the staff. Maybe he was in charge
20 of security or something like that.
21 Q. What about Djordje Calosevic?
22 A. Djordje Calosevic was a member of the local commune at the time.
23 But the local commune was non-operational at that time.
24 Q. Are you saying that Djordje Calosevic was not a member of the
25 Dalj Defence Staff?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And you knew that for certain?
3 A. Yes, of course, I do. Of course, yes.
4 MR. GILLETT: Can we get document 1D913. This is tab number 31
5 on the screen. And while that's coming up, this is a publication from
6 "Politika" dated 4 August 1991. It's titled: "More than 80 MUP and Guard
7 Members Killed."
8 Q. This article describes the clashes in Dalj and the take-over by
9 the Serb forces in early August 1991, which is the same take-over we've
10 heard from you in your statement and this morning.
11 Now, if we look at the third paragraph of page 1 in the English,
12 we see that it states:
13 "According to Borivoje Milinkovic, commander ..." And there is a
14 typo I believe, Milinovic.
15 "According to Borivoje," as typed, "Milinovic, commander of the
16 Dalj Defence Staff, the police and guardsmen defended themselves with all
17 the forces they had because in their words in Dalj they were defending
19 Are you aware of somebody else called Borivoje Milinovic who was
20 a member of the Dalj Defence Staff?
21 A. There is Borislav Mihajlovic in Dalj who was president of the
22 local commune, and I am Borivoje Milinovic -- Milinkovic. I don't know
23 any Milinovic. But reporters often ascribe the wrong functions to
24 different people. I don't know why. Maybe even to make better copy.
25 Q. In the original Cyrillic does it say Borivoje Milinovic or
1 Milinkovic in this article. Could you take a look?
2 A. It looks like Milinkovic.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Could we, to make sure, could we blow it up a
5 little bit? Because it's almost impossible to see what is on the screen.
6 MR. GILLETT:
7 Q. Do you go that it looks like Milinkovic?
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Your Honours --
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's not Milinkovic. It is
10 Milanovic. Milanovic.
11 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, could we get 65 ter document 6617 on
12 the monitor and we'll -- we'll seek a revised translation to check this.
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. While we are waiting for this document, I
14 would come back to a previous question of yours, Mr. Gillett, and the
15 witness's answer. You asked what about Djordje Calosevic.
16 MR. GILLETT: Mm-hm.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Milinkovic, did you say that you are certain
18 that this person was not a member of the Defence Staff?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm sure.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
21 MR. GILLETT: Thank you.
22 If we could get 65 ter document 6617, please. And --
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Do we have a tab number, Mr. Gillett.
24 MR. GILLETT: Tab 51.
25 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
1 MR. GILLETT:
2 Q. While this is coming up, this is the record of a witness
3 statement given in front of the county court in Osijek. Now, the witness
4 describes his capture at the time of the Serb take-over of Dalj and then
5 his detention and mistreatment first in Borovo Selo and then in Dalj.
6 MR. GILLETT: If we go to page 3 and in the B/C/S this should be
7 at the bottom of page 2.
8 Q. He states the following:
9 "Their so-called Territorial Defence Staff had all the power in
10 Dalj village and it was headed by Boro and Djordje Milinkovic,
11 Milorad Kljajic Djordje Kljajic and Dragoljub Calosevic. They were some
12 kind of leaders in that staff and nothing could happen in the village
13 without their knowledge and approval, so I think they are responsible for
14 all the crimes committed against the non-Serbian population in Dalj by
15 the members of the Serbian paramilitary formations."
16 Do you have a relation called Djordje Milinkovic?
17 A. I have a brother or cousin.
18 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note in the Serbian language it's
19 not clear which.
20 MR. GILLETT:
21 Q. Are you able to clarify whether he was an immediate brother to
22 the same parents or a cousin with different parents?
23 A. It's my brother. He was a member of the staff, and this is this
24 information. I will repeat. Boro Milinkovic was never on the staff.
25 This Djordje, I don't know who that name is. Mr. Calosevic, he had
1 nothing to do with it. He was a football player and the people of Dalj
2 know him as a athlete.
3 Q. Now, Mr. Calosevic was well known in Dalj; correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Turning --
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry -- sorry. Just to see two Calosevic were
7 mentioned so far, Dragoljub, as far as I understand, and Djordje
9 MR. GILLETT: Thank you. I'll --
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: We need to clarify.
11 MR. GILLETT: Yes.
12 Q. When you say Calosevic was a football player and had nothing to
13 do with it, what is the first name of this Calosevic?
14 A. Dragoljub. Djordje is another, a different Calosevic. And those
15 are two different persons.
16 Q. Was Djordje Calosevic known in the Dalj village?
17 A. We all know each other in Dalj. Djordje was also well known to
18 all the people in Dalj. It's a very small place.
19 Q. Turning to the attack on Dalj on 1st of August. You say that
20 were a pacifist; correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. You opposed weapons? Could you articulate your answer. Thank
24 A. Yes, yes.
25 Q. You said on direct testimony that you participated in the attack
1 on Dalj by driving a truck from Borovo to Dalj; correct?
2 A. Correct.
3 Q. That truck had weapons in the back of it; correct?
4 A. Yes. Except I didn't know immediately that it contained weapons.
5 Q. The weapons included rifles and machine-guns; right?
6 A. Rifle, machine-guns. Later I saw some Thompson automatic rifles,
7 et cetera.
8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could the witness be asked
9 to speak into the microphone, not beside it.
10 MR. GILLETT: Could I ask you to speak loudly and clearly for the
11 interpreters' sake. Thank you.
12 Q. Now, you found out that the truck had weapons in the back of it
13 when you stopped at Lovas farm, correct, which is halfway between
14 Borovo Selo and Dalj, more or less?
15 A. Precisely.
16 Q. Precisely that you found out at Lovas farm that the weapons were
17 on the back of the truck?
18 A. Correct.
19 Q. But you, nonetheless, went ahead and drove the weapons into Dalj.
20 A. Yes, I drove them into Dalj.
21 Q. Now, could we get video 6338.2. That's the 65 ter number. And
22 the tab is 46. And if we could play that from start to finish, please.
23 MR. GILLETT: I'LL just check if the interpreters are ready for
24 the video.
25 THE INTERPRETER: We are.
1 MR. GILLETT: Thank you.
2 [Video-clip played]
3 "THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] All that is seized. We need to
4 take care that none of the locals get hurt. We had no problems with the
5 old timers, the native inhabitants, not even during the Second World War.
6 We often invited them to be our guests, we socialised with them, but the
7 others put them under pressure. We know very well who they are and what
8 kind of people those native inhabitants are, and I think there will be no
9 problems with them.
10 "Reporter: Those here are the documents of a ZNG member;
12 "Answer: Yes. Look, this is evidence. Mind you that this is
13 Marko Andabak who is Ivo Andabak's brother. You can see that this is his
14 official ID as a reserve police member. That shows what kind of people
15 they took into their police. He is the terrorist's brother. He
16 participated, together with Barisic, in the murder of our ambassador
17 Rolovic a long time ago. His brother is here as well. I mean, look what
18 we found on him. Look. Here it says NDH, Independent State of Croatia,
19 the letter U, and on the other side there is the text: Bitter remedy for
20 a bitter wound. The leader. Look at this, this is interesting. The
21 knife that was carried and the stuff they are using.
22 "Reporter: It's a special knife and here it has a pattern for --
23 "Answer: Yes. This -- that's a wire for strangling or
24 something. I must tell that you yesterday while fleeing they killed a
25 man, a woman, and a child. I must also tell you that one of our men was
1 trying to save small Croatian children. They were so small. He wanted
2 to save them, but they killed him while he was trying to save them.
3 "Reporter: We saw a few buses with Croatian refugees and
4 children in Dalj. Does it mean they will leave these places?
5 "Answer: Look, we have been inviting them and we are still
6 inviting them and guarantee that they would live in peace. Today I went
7 personally to see a mother of one Croatian MUP member. I prepared the
8 things for them. I secured a house where they could stay. That means
9 they can come back. It is well known who cannot come back. Ustashas
10 that are hiding. But inhabits from here can all come and we do guarantee
11 they would live in peace and full safety."
12 MR. GILLETT:
13 Q. You recognised the person giving the statement to the
14 interviewer; correct?
15 A. Of course.
16 Q. For the record, could you state who it is.
17 A. It's me.
18 Q. The interviewer is Nimo Brajovic; correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And in the interview, you're wearing a military jacket; right?
21 A. No.
22 Q. The jacket that we just saw is a camouflage-coloured jacket;
24 A. I'll tell you all about it.
25 Q. Well, if I can --
1 A. I had not slept all night --
2 Q. I'll give you a chance to explain. I just first for the sake of
3 the record want to clarify: Are you saying that the jacket you're
4 wearing in this video is not a camouflage-coloured jacket? Is that what
5 you're saying?
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: This is correct -- [indiscernible] --
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
8 MR. ZIVANOVIC: -- quotation.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: I beg your pardon?
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Because on that question the witness answered, it
11 is line 2, "I'll tell you all about it."
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: I'll allow the question. Please proceed --
13 MR. GILLETT:
14 Q. So my first question is, are you saying that the jacket you're
15 wearing in this clip is not a camouflage-coloured jacket?
16 A. I'm saying that it's not a military jacket.
17 Q. Why do you say that's not a military jacket?
18 A. It had started to rain, and I took that jacket from my brother.
19 It's a huntsman's jacket. Yes, it is camouflage-coloured, but it was
20 used by huntsmen when they went hunting.
21 Q. The first line of the video, of the audio did not come through
22 very clearly. Could we play just the -- the first initial few seconds to
23 get that again, please.
24 [Video-clip played]
25 "THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] We are taking strict care that none
1 of the captured people gets hurt. We had no problems with old time
2 residents, not even during the second -- World War II. We often invited
3 them to be our guests, we socialised with them, but the others put them
4 under pressure. We know very well who they are and what kind of people
5 these old time residents are, and I think there will be no problem with
7 MR. GILLETT:
8 Q. Thank you. So you state: "We are taking strict care that none
9 of the captured people gets hurt." Who do you mean when you say "we"?
10 A. When I say "we," I meant us, the inhabitants of Dalj, the people
11 who were living there. And I meant myself, of course.
12 Q. So you were responsible for the well-being of the prisoners
13 captured during the attack on Dalj; correct?
14 A. No, I was not responsible. When I say "we" -- you can see that
15 it's an informal interview that Nimo made with me in passing. I was no
16 more responsible than any other man in the street. He could have stopped
17 anyone in the street. I believe everybody would have told him the same
18 as I did. I did not occupy any positions at that time.
19 Q. Some of the people captured in Dalj during the Serbia take-over
20 were mistreated while they were in detention; correct?
21 A. Yes. Yes, that happened.
22 Q. And this includes Nikola Rupcic who was beaten quite severely;
24 A. Yes. Nikola Rupcic was beaten up. One day I went to the local
25 commune, the local commune building where the local staff was, the
1 headquarters --
2 Q. Sorry to cut you off. In fact, we do have your statement and we
3 have your evidence and this is covered in detail in your statement. So
4 you don't need to repeat it for us again today.
5 After the take-over of Dalj, some bodies were removed and others
6 were left in the streets. That's correct, right?
7 A. I didn't understand the question.
8 Q. I'll repeat. After the take-over of Dalj - so this would be in
9 August 1991 - some bodies, dead bodies, were removed but others were left
10 lying in the streets; is that correct?
11 A. They were not removed. A refrigerator truck came from Osijek and
12 took them to Osijek. They were supposed to collect all the bodies.
13 Q. If a refrigerator truck took the bodies away, how were they not
15 A. They were driven away, removed. I understood you to mean that we
16 took those bodies away, some there, removed them, but it was these people
17 from Osijek who collected some of the bodies and left others behind.
18 Q. There were bodies at the bakery in Dalj; correct?
19 A. I myself was not anywhere around the bakery, but I know that
20 there were bodies around the bakery and inside the bakery. Other people
21 told me that.
22 Q. One of the peoples who died or whose body was at the bakery was
23 Petar or Pero Djevelekaj. And I'll spell that: D-j-e-v-e-l-e-k-a-j.
24 That's correct, right?
25 A. I don't know because I wasn't there.
1 Q. He was murdered; correct?
2 A. If he was murdered, then he was murdered. I don't know. I read
3 about it.
4 Q. You read that he was murdered? Are you saying you can confirm
5 that he was murdered?
6 A. Well, I didn't see it. You understand?
7 Q. That -- that wasn't my question. My question was whether you
8 reading is that can confirm that he was murdered.
9 A. Yes, yes.
10 Q. What did you read that can confirm that he was murdered?
11 A. There was a list of people who were murdered. He, then a
12 neighbour of mine, and -- I don't know any more people.
13 Q. What list was this?
14 A. I don't understand. Which list?
15 Q. You said that there was a list of people who were murdered.
16 Which list was this?
17 A. I didn't say a list. I read in the newspaper. I don't know for
18 sure if it was Croatian newspapers. Sometimes somebody would bring the
19 Glas Slavonije, the Croatian newspaper, and we would read it. And in
20 that newspaper I read some names of people who had been murdered.
21 MR. GILLETT: I see the time and I won't be able to go into the
22 next point before the break, so if that's convenient. It's 12.15;
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you, Mr. Gillett.
25 Mr. Milinkovic, we take the second break, 30 minutes as well, so
1 we will be back at 12.45.
2 Court adjourned.
3 [The witness stands down]
4 --- Recess taken at 12.14 p.m.
5 --- On resuming at 12.45 p.m.
6 [The witness takes the stand]
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Please proceed, Mr. Gillett.
8 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Mr. President.
9 Q. Welcome back, Mr. Milinkovic. Before the break, we were talking
10 about the murder of a Mr. Petar Djevelekaj. And you knew him from Dalj,
11 correct, prior to his murder.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. It was well-known that he was murdered; correct?
14 A. Yes, correct.
15 Q. He -- the US Helsinki Committee in January 1992 --
16 MR. GILLETT: And this is Exhibit P2946, which is tab 39. I'm
17 not going to display that on the monitor, it's just for the reference.
18 Q. This is what they stated:
19 "Petar Djevelekaj, a baker of Albanian origin, was first beaten
20 and then executed by two close range gun-shots to the head."
21 So they were correct that he was murdered; right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. When you said that Croatian newspapers such as Glas Slavonije
24 mentioned this, when was that. What year?
25 A. I can't say. I can't tell you the year.
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry. We have a technical problem with our
3 screen in displaying e-court documents.
4 [Prosecution counsel confer]
5 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. For the moment nothing is displayed,
6 Mr. Zivanovic, so we can -- let's check. There is something -- there is
7 a document on the screen.
8 Are we discussing this document, Mr. Gillett?
9 MR. GILLETT: No.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
11 MR. GILLETT: I didn't ask for the document to be shown.
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: So we can take this document off the screen, and
13 then we have time to address and try to resolve your problem.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated]
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: It is okay now. Okay.
16 Please proceed, Mr. Gillett.
17 MR. GILLETT: Thank you.
18 Q. Approximately what year would that have been when you read about
19 this in the Glas Slavonije?
20 A. I really can't say. I can't even give you the year. I don't
21 even know whether it was in Glas Slavonije. I know I read it somewhere.
22 But I also heard people in Dalj saying that he was murdered.
23 Q. So it was while you were still in Dalj. It was before you moved
24 to Serbia; correct?
25 A. Yes. I was in Dalj all that time, up until 1996. I was there,
1 in Dalj, all the time.
2 Q. And it was prior to you giving the statement to the OTP
3 investigates that we've discussed today; correct?
4 A. Yes, yes, yes.
5 MR. GILLETT: While we pause, could I get 65 ter document 6620
6 on the monitor, please. And this is the record of examination of a
7 witness, a different witness from the previous one I mentioned, again in
8 front of the county court in Osijek. And this is 9 February 2001. This
9 witness, Antun Pavosevic, was working at the bakery together with
10 Pero Djevelekaj on the 1st of August, when the Serb take-over of Dalj
12 In his statement, if we go to page 3, the third paragraph in
13 English, please. And this is should be the second page in B/C/S. And,
14 sorry, this is tab 54.
15 Q. So if we look at the third paragraph, it states:
16 "When the attack on Dalj police station stopped, I saw a group of
17 Serbs carrying long-barrels heading towards the bakery. They started
18 shooting at the bakery from the street before approaching. This was when
19 Matija Zlatar and I ran out through the back door into the yard, in the
20 vicinity of which there was a spring called Jama. The owner, Petar
21 Djevelekaj and Nikola Tadijan, stayed inside the bakery. I hid in some
22 rubble while Matija Zlatar hid in an abandoned pigsty. We left our
23 hideouts at about 5.00 p.m.
24 "From my hideout I was able to see through the same door that I
25 ran out of what was going on at the bakery. One of the several person
1 who came into the bakery I recognised: Marko Loncarevic,
2 Borivoje Milinkovic, aka Vrlja, and a man named Osman, a bricklayer from
3 Savulja in Borovo Selo. Through the same door, I saw them interrogating
4 and mistreating Pero Djevelekaj and Nikola Tadijan. A while later I
5 heard some shots coming from the bakery. I assumed they killed everyone
6 inside. This later turned out to be the truth; namely, after leaving our
7 hideouts, Matija Zlatar and I went inside the bakery and saw
8 Pero Djevelekaj and Nikola Tadijan lying dead."
9 Sir, your nickname is Vrlja; correct?
10 A. Correct.
11 Q. And this witness was correct that Petar Djevelekaj was murdered;
13 A. He told the truth, that he was murdered. The rest is not
15 Q. You don't mention this murder or who is responsible for it your
16 statement, do you?
17 A. No.
18 Q. You were charged for this murder; correct?
19 A. Yes, yes.
20 Q. And you knew that you were charged for this murder when you gave
21 the statement to the OTP Prosecutors; correct?
22 A. Correct, yes.
23 Q. On 2nd of August -- actually, according to your corrections
24 today, I believe this would be 1st August, 1991, when you arrived Dalj
25 you went to the Dalj library; correct?
1 A. When I arrived Dalj I went home first. My house is at the far
2 end of Dalj. That was around 11.00. That is, a.m.
3 Q. After going home, you then went to the library; correct?
4 A. That's correct.
5 Q. Now, you've mentioned that Dalj is a town where everybody knew
6 each other, and rumours would spread quickly in Dalj; correct?
7 A. Correct, yes.
8 Q. And you heard accounts of Arkan killing people in Dalj, didn't
10 A. I heard but I didn't attend. I didn't see.
11 Q. Locals in Dalj were angered about these killings by Arkan and his
12 men; correct?
13 A. I can't say that they were concerned about Arkan. They were
14 concerned about what was going on in Dalj. The murders. I can't claim
15 that those people were murdered by Arkan, because I didn't see it with my
16 own eyes.
17 Q. Are you saying the local people were not upset by Arkan's
19 A. No, I'm not saying that. They were upset by murders. But not
20 Arkan's murders. By murders in general. They were concerned that there
21 were murders in the first place.
22 Q. You just mentioned that there were rumours of Arkan killing
23 people in Dalj. So to clarify, are you saying that the locals in Dalj
24 were not upset by the rumours of Arkan and his men killing people but
25 they were upset about rumours of other people carrying out killings. Is
1 that what you're saying?
2 A. No --
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It is asked and -- sorry. It's asked and
6 MR. GILLETT: Well, with all due respect, I feel the witness has
7 attempted to not specifically answer this question which is why I am
8 attempting to obtain a more precise answer on this point.
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Objection overruled.
10 Please proceed, Mr. Gillett.
11 MR. GILLETT:
12 Q. Would you like me to repeat the question?
13 A. No, no need. I'll try and be very precise. The people in Dalj
14 were concerned by all the murders that were taking place. I personally
15 don't know whether Arkan was doing the killings, who was it. There were
16 murders, and people were concerned by them. If they were committed by
17 Arkan, then they were concerned about those, and about all the other
18 murders as well.
19 MR. GILLETT: Could we get Exhibit P115.1. This is tab 28 on the
21 Q. This is the Vojvodina State Security Service report, describing
22 the incident on 15 October --
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gillett, it seems that tab 28 is
25 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Your Honour. This is the public
1 version. I should have specified tab 28B, I believe, in the updated
2 exhibit list. Thank you.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
4 Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: As far as I know, it is not report but
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Is that correct, Mr. Gillett? I don't see it
8 here on the screen.
9 MR. GILLETT: The title in English is a report.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: The title in B/C/S is information.
11 JUDGE DELVOIE: Say it in B/C/S, please, Mr. Zivanovic.
12 MR. ZIVANOVIC: "Informacija."
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Translation, please.
14 THE INTERPRETER: Information, report.
15 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
16 Mr. Zivanovic, interpretation says information, report. Gives
17 the two.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated].
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Are you asking for -- are you asking for a --
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated] We'll do it. However,
21 "report" in B/C/S is "izvjestaj."
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. So you will ask for a translation
23 verification and we will hear from you. Thank you.
24 MR. GILLETT:
25 Q. The document states that on Thursday, 15 October, there was
1 around 300, and I'm not quoting here, I'm paraphrasing, around 300
2 members of the Dalj TO forced Dalj TO Staff members and some SBWS
3 government ministers to respond to allegations concerning the unbearable
4 conditions. The TO members complained about Stricevic and his space
5 police abusing and torturing prisoners, and they accused Arkan of killing
6 40 prisoners and he confessed to this.
7 The report is correct when it states there were ministers of the
8 SBWS government present at that gathering, isn't it?
9 A. No, not correct.
10 Q. Did you verify with SBWS government ministers that they did not
11 go to this gathering?
12 A. There was nothing to verify. I am certain that none of them
13 attended that meeting. That meeting was in Dalj, in the market-place.
14 Q. You don't know whether some of the SBWS government ministers went
15 to that meeting, do you?
16 A. You're now suggesting that I don't know. I'm claiming that they
17 were not.
18 Q. The meeting was a large gathering with several hundred people
19 present; correct?
20 A. Correct.
21 Q. And Arkan was well-known at this time in the town of Dalj; right?
22 A. Right.
23 Q. The date, 15 October, is several days after two significant
24 murder incidents in Dalj; correct?
25 A. I learned about those murders subsequently. However, the dates
1 and the date-wise, yes, I would say yes.
2 Q. It's correct that Arkan confessed to those murders at this
3 meeting, isn't it?
4 A. It's possible. I'm not saying yes. But he was the type of a
5 person who was capable of claiming that in front of so many people.
6 Q. Who told you about this gathering?
7 A. I wouldn't be able to tell you. It was a long time ago. It was
8 not important. I did not participate in it. I heard it from people,
9 from neighbours.
10 Q. So you don't know exactly who told you there were no government
11 members present at this meeting, do you?
12 A. No.
13 Q. Well, in fact, you're trying to minimise your knowledge of this
14 meeting and Arkan's confession to these murders, aren't you?
15 A. No. Just the opposite is the case. I'm against any murder, and
16 I'm not trying to diminish Arkan's responsibility for murders, if they
17 were committed.
18 Q. You're trying to diminish the responsibility of members of the
19 SBWS government for these murders, aren't you?
20 A. Not correct. Those who did it should be taken to task. Nobody
21 from the government was there. I was the closest to the venue, because I
22 was in Dalj, so I suppose I would have attended if anybody had.
23 Q. How do you know that you were closer to the venue than any other
24 SBWS government member?
25 A. Because I hail from Dalj. And my office was some 500 metres away
1 from the market-place. If anybody had come and if I -- anybody was to
2 attend, I suppose that they would have come to fetch me.
3 Q. So it's a presumption that you were the closest to this meeting
4 and that no other SBWS government member attended; correct?
5 A. It is a presumption. I didn't attend and I don't know that
6 anybody else did. I'm not privy to that information.
7 Q. Now, there were also stories in Dalj of Hungarians who lived on
8 the Dalj Planina, the mountain, and that Arkan and his men had killed
9 them as well; correct?
10 A. Correct. There were two stories. I could never arrive at the
11 bottom of any of them. There were rumours about Arkan or his men having
12 killed them or some people who had been relocated to Dalj Planina.
13 Although those people who lived in Dalj Planina were on good terms with
14 us all of us Serbs in Dalj. There was no reason for anybody living there
15 to be murdered.
16 Q. Who did you hear these accounts from about Dalj killing
17 Hungarian -- sorry, Arkan killing Hungarians in Dalj?
18 A. I can't give you any names. Those were rumours. People just
19 shifted responsibility from one person to another. I heard that story on
20 several occasions from various people, but I can't really tell you from
21 whom. It's been a -- a long time ago.
22 Q. So these stories were reasonably widespread. It wasn't just
23 yourself as an SBWS government minister that knew them; correct?
24 A. I didn't know. I heard. It's one thing to know things and
25 another to hear of them. I agree that other people knew as much as I
1 did. The village was rife with that rumour.
2 Q. When you say "other people," you include other members of the
3 SBWS government, don't you.
4 A. Yes, I suppose that others heard as well. If I heard those
5 rumours, the others must have heard them as well.
6 Q. And that would include Goran Hadzic; correct?
7 A. I don't know about Goran Hadzic because people could not get to
8 Goran that easily. Because he didn't move around market-places, stores,
10 Q. You're not aware of the SBWS government taking any measures to
11 investigate or punish these murder, are you?
12 A. I don't know. It didn't have instruments. Even if it had wanted
13 to, if that had been an item on the agenda, they couldn't have done
14 anything. All of that was under the military's authority.
15 Q. The Catholic church in Dalj was destroyed at some point,
16 according to your statement, in 1992 or 1993; correct?
17 A. Correct.
18 Q. Do you know who destroyed the church?
19 A. I assume, because I was not present, my house is second to the
20 Catholic church, and despite the fact that I'm a Serb and of Orthodox
21 faith, I am emotionally attached to that church. My mother was in there.
22 I was informed - I don't know who told me - Arkan had been seen that
23 morning after the destruction of the church. So after the church was
24 destroyed he was there. He was close to the place, and it is possible
25 that he did it.
1 Q. Did the SBWS government try and investigate who destroyed this
3 A. I was no longer a member of the government. I don't know when
4 that happened. I believe that UNPROFOR had already arrived about that
6 Q. So you don't know --
7 A. I apologise. Could you perhaps give me the date? I believe that
8 at the time I was no longer in the government, but could you give me the
10 Q. Your statement says 1992 or 1993, which is a broad range. Now,
11 am I correct in understanding that if we are talking about the period
12 where you were no longer a member of the government, you cannot comment
13 on whether they were capable of investigating or not these types of
14 crimes or not, can you?
15 A. [Overlapping speakers]
16 Q. Could you repeat your answer.
17 A. Precisely, yes, you're right.
18 Q. You were on the SDS board in Dalj; correct?
19 A. Correct.
20 Q. And some of the other members were Borislav Mihajlovic, who you
21 mentioned earlier today; correct?
22 A. Yes, correct.
23 Q. Branko Ocic.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Vaso Gavrilovic.
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And Djordje Calosevic?
3 A. Correct.
4 Q. And Djordje Calosevic's nickname was Djoko Briga; correct?
5 A. Briga, yes.
6 Q. Calosevic violently abused non-Serbs in Dalj; correct?
7 A. I heard about that. I never attended any such incident, but I
8 did hear stories.
9 Q. Is it correct or is it not correct that he violently abused
11 A. Correct.
12 Q. Do you know someone called Josip Alagic from Dalj?
13 A. It would be Alagic. Alagic.
14 Q. Apologies for my pronunciation. Do you know this person,
15 Josip Alagic?
16 A. I do.
17 Q. Was there also a second person in Dalj called Josip Alagic?
18 It's -- as I understand -- my information, to clarify, is that one was
19 aged 56 in 1992, and the other was aged 72 in 1992. Does that sound
20 correct to you?
21 A. I know several people by the name Alagic from Dalj. But what
22 you're saying is quite possible.
23 MR. GILLETT: Could we get Exhibit P2862, this is tab 21, please.
24 Q. And while this comes up, this is a report from UNCIVPOL from
25 July 1992.
1 MR. GILLETT: And if we could go to page 6 of this.
2 Q. This report refers to the beating of Mr. Alagic, the 56-year-old
3 one, in Dalj in July 1992, and it says that Djordje Calosevic beat this
4 gentleman. That's correct, isn't it?
5 A. I don't know who that person was. Is there perhaps a street or a
6 street name? I can't see.
7 Q. I believe the street name is it Ulica Republika which used to be
8 known as Karadjordjevo. Does that help your memory?
9 A. Yes, yes.
10 Q. So it's correct that Djordje Calosevic beat this Josip Alagic on
11 this street, isn't it?
12 A. Yes, yes.
13 Q. How do you know that's correct?
14 A. Because that's my uncle. A relative.
15 Q. There's no mention of Djordje Calosevic in your statement, is
17 A. How do you mean? When I gave my statement?
18 Q. In the statement that we've discussed today, there is no mention
19 of Djordje Calosevic, is there?
20 A. Correct.
21 Q. Your statement does mention the Easter expulsion in 1992 of
22 Croats from Dalj; right?
23 A. That's right.
24 Q. And a gentleman named Miroslav Susic came to you on 18 April 1992
25 and told you they were going to drive away Croats; correct? Could you
1 articulate your answer.
2 A. That's right. It was around 2.00 in the afternoon. I was at
3 home when Mr. Susic came, a neighbour of mine, and he said they would be
4 expelling Croats. He himself was a Croat and that's why he came to me.
5 He wanted me to protect him. I told him he could hide at my place if he
6 could hide anywhere, but that was impossible. Later, I heard it was
7 true. They did expel Croats but he stayed because he was in hiding.
8 Q. And it was over 100 Croats that were expelled in that incident;
10 A. I don't know the exact number, but they were expelled. It was
11 around Easter time, Catholic Easter.
12 Q. It was a large group. It was many Croats, wasn't it?
13 A. I don't know. I only heard on the next day that a lot of Croats
14 had been expelled, but I don't know the exact number.
15 Q. In your statement, you described this incident in detail but you
16 don't describe who was responsible for it. That's correct, isn't it?
17 A. Correct.
18 Q. One of the people that was responsible was Djordje Calosevic;
20 A. I don't know if he is responsible, but he did take part in the
21 expulsion of Croats. I don't know who is responsible for it.
22 MR. GILLETT: Could I get 65 ter document 6618, this is tab 52,
24 Q. And while this comes up, this is a judgement of the district
25 court in Osijek dated 29 November 2007. One accused, a Vlastimir Dencic,
1 is found guilty for carrying out the 18 April Easter expulsion from Dalj.
2 The second accused, Zoran Kecman was acquitted.
3 Now in its statement of reasons --
4 MR. GILLETT: That should be on page 2 in the second paragraph.
5 And in B/C/S this should be on page 6. The English translation, I note,
6 is only partial, but we're in the process of getting a full translation
7 of this. We've translated the relevant portions.
8 Page 2, the second paragraph. In the English, if we could skip
9 to page 2. Could we skip one further page in the English. Thank you.
10 Q. The second full paragraph reads:
11 "In addition to that, the victims of the displacement who were
12 examined during the trial proved in disputably that the plan about their
13 displacement had existed and that the perpetrators were
14 Milorad Loncarevic, Pero Djuric, Djordje Vasic, Djordje Calosevic,
15 nicknamed Djoko Briga, Jovan Milinkovic, nicknamed Grbarvi [phoen]
16 Jovica, Borivoje Milinkovic, nicknamed Boro Vrlja, Djordje Milinkovic,
17 nicknamed Djordje Vrlja, and other known and unknown Arkan's Men.
18 Emil Matin, Ivan Patron, Mirko Kelava, Andjelka Diosa, and Goran Vujicic
19 confirmed in their statements the existence of the list of inhabitants of
20 Dalj who were to be displaced."
21 The judgement identified Calosevic as one of the perpetrators.
22 That was correct, wasn't it?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Milorad Loncarevic was the brother of Marko Loncarevic; right?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Who was Djordje Vasic?
2 A. It's a man from Dalj who worked in the local commune. Anyway, a
3 man from Dalj.
4 Q. So he worked for the local government.
5 A. Yes, he worked in the local commune. You could call it a local
6 government, yes.
7 Q. Jovan Milinkovic, that's your brother; correct?
8 A. Yes. It's not my brother. It's a half-brother. I don't want to
9 go into long explanations. He is my father's son from a first marriage.
10 Q. Borivoje Milinkovic. That's yourself, correct, nicknamed Vrlja?
11 A. Yes. But I was not involved in this. I did not participate in
13 Q. And Djordje Milinkovic nicknamed Djordje Vrlja. That's your
14 brother; correct?
15 A. He is my own brother, and he certainly did not participate in
16 this. The two of us were not involved.
17 Q. There was a plan to carry out this expulsion, wasn't there, as
18 found in the judgement?
19 A. I don't know what kind of plan it was. You can ask the person
20 who made that plan. I don't know of any plan. I know what I advocated
21 all the time and what we, in the government, worked for all the time.
22 Q. Sir, if I can stop you there. My question --
23 A. That everyone should remain to live --
24 Q. My question was whether this expulsion was carried out according
25 to a plan. Are you saying that there was no plan for this expulsion,
1 that the judgement was incorrect in finding that?
2 A. I don't know if there had been a plan. It probably existed, if
3 it has proven. I don't know. I wasn't a part of it.
4 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, I would tender this document at this
6 JUDGE DELVOIE: Admitted and marked.
7 THE REGISTRAR: 65 ter number 6618?
8 MR. GILLETT: Yes, thank you.
9 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P3260, Your Honours.
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: [Microphone not activated] Yes, thank you.
11 MR. GILLETT:
12 Q. You're not aware of the SBWS authorities taking any measures to
13 investigate or punish the perpetrators of this expulsion, are you?
14 A. No. The extent of my information is that a number of policemen
15 were involved in this expulsion as well as Arkan's Men and some civilians
16 who also took part, which means that nothing was undertaken to stop it.
17 Or perhaps it was impossible? I don't know.
18 Q. Which policemen? Were they policemen from Dalj?
19 A. Policemen from Dalj, yes. I believe that Loncarevic was employed
20 in the local police force.
21 Q. On what basis do you say Arkan's Men were involved in this
23 A. Because I heard that Arkan's Men had been there. I can tell you
24 specifically from whom I heard that, from a Croat man who told me about
25 it when he came to Serbia. I can even give you his name. It's not a
2 Q. And when did he tell you about it when he came to Serbia?
3 A. He came to visit me. He had also been expelled. He came just to
4 see me as a friend.
5 Q. What year would that have been?
6 A. Around year 2000, maybe 2001.
7 Q. So this was before you gave the statement to the OTP
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. So you knew of who was said to be responsible for this crime
11 before you gave your statement to the OTP investigators; right?
12 A. It's not about responsibility. Responsibility lies on the person
13 who gave the orders. Who was involved, who participated is a different
14 thing. I only heard about some people who participated.
15 Q. My question was not about who, in actual fact, was responsible.
16 It was the fact that you knew at the time you gave your statement to the
17 OTP investigators that people, including Arkan's Men, were said to be
18 responsible for this crime. You knew that at the time you gave this
19 statement, didn't you?
20 A. I knew that. But nobody asked me, and ... yes, I knew that.
21 Q. In your statement, paragraph 1, you state:
22 "I will describe everything I know."
23 You were specifically asked about this April expulsion, weren't
24 you, and you didn't tell the investigators everything you knew about it,
25 did you?
1 A. I did not hold it back deliberately. I was tired. I spoke in
2 bits and pieces, as I remembered things. That's why -- why I omitted it.
4 Q. You reviewed the statement before you signed it; correct?
5 A. It was read back to me. And that's it.
6 Q. And --
7 A. I was not able to read it myself because it was in English.
8 Q. That's correct. You also read a B/C/S translation of the
9 statement before your testimony here today; correct?
10 A. Yes, yes.
11 Q. And you didn't provide this information in your testimony earlier
12 today, did you?
13 A. Well, I expected questions on the subject.
14 Q. So that's a no; right?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Are you saying I'm correct when I say that's a no?
17 A. Believe me, I don't anymore what you asked me. There were two or
18 three questions.
19 MR. ZIVANOVIC: The question is quite unclear.
20 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic, I -- I didn't hear you.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: The question is unclear for me. If it could
22 be --
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: Well -- okay.
24 Mr. Gillett, try again.
25 MR. GILLETT: I'll try and rephrase.
1 Q. The -- you did not provide information about who was responsible
2 for this expulsion in your testimony earlier today or when you reviewed
3 your statement yesterday, did you?
4 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry, I would object to this question. He was
5 not asked today about this incident. And I don't know what is the sense
6 of such a question. And when he was asked, he gave the answer.
7 MR. GILLETT: The question --
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Gillett, I suggest you move on.
9 MR. GILLETT: Understood. Thank you.
10 Q. Sir, is it fair to say that you describe the SBWS government as
11 lacking serious powers. Would that be a fair summary of your testimony
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. In fact, the SBWS government did have a number of powers, didn't
16 A. Yes, in certain aspects. Regarding normal life, production, the
17 establishment of factories, culture, but certainly not control and
18 command over the army. Nothing like that.
19 Q. It had a budget; correct? It had money at its disposal.
20 A. I don't remember the budget because I didn't receive a salary.
21 Q. My question was not the exact amount. It was whether the SBWS
22 government had money at its disposal.
23 A. A budget was passed, but there was nothing in that budget. We
24 had only tried to collect some funds into the budget. I'm talking only
25 about the period when I was a minister.
1 Q. Did I understand you correctly to say earlier money was given to
2 you as minister of culture and religion to carry out works within your
3 ministry's remit?
4 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
5 MR. ZIVANOVIC: It's not the answer that the witness gave today.
6 He precisely said what money he got and from whom he got the money.
7 JUDGE DELVOIE: Perhaps you better quote from the transcript,
8 Mr. Gillett.
9 MR. GILLETT: Let me just get a minute to get that transcript
10 reference. Thank you.
11 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Microphone not activated]
12 JUDGE DELVOIE: Microphone, please.
13 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Oh, sorry. It is page 32, lines 16 to 22.
14 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
15 MR. GILLETT: And I thank my learned friend for that.
16 Q. The answer you gave earlier today when asked whether you received
17 a salary was:
18 "No, I never worked for a salary. I only once got coupons for
19 petrol that I collected in order to be able to pay the wages of the
20 people who were working cleaning up the museum in Vukovar. That's the
21 only thing I collected. Otherwise I worked without a salary. And I must
22 say that money that I received I got from Mr. Milanovic. I don't know
23 where he got it from."
24 So there was money coming from Mr. Milanovic; correct? Could you
25 state your answer on the record.
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. The SBWS government could fire members of the MUP, the police;
4 A. No, the government didn't do that. I don't remember that the
5 government fired anyone. How could the government fire anyone from the
6 MUP? I don't even know how the Ministry of Interior, how the police,
7 were financed.
8 Q. Are you saying you don't remember that the government fired
9 anyone from the MUP or that they could not fire anyone from the MUP?
10 A. Well, it was at lower levels. There were secretariats at the
11 lower level.
12 Q. That wasn't my question. My question was whether you're saying
13 you don't remember if the SBWS government fired anyone from the MUP or
14 whether it was not possible, they didn't have the power to fire anyone,
15 from the MUP?
16 A. I don't remember.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
18 MR. ZIVANOVIC: I think it is also unclear. The MUP is too --
19 too vague. What does it mean? For ordinary policemen or some -- someone
20 with some function or ...
21 MR. GILLETT: I can try and clarify.
22 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay. Please do.
23 MR. GILLETT:
24 Q. I understand your answer to you be I don't remember that they
25 could fire people from the MUP. Would that include any incidents of any
1 police within the SBWS, that you don't remember any instances of the SBWS
2 government being able to fire any of those police?
3 A. Some ministers were replaced. You must understand that the
4 government makes proposals to the assembly and the assembly accepts them
5 or not. We did not deal with personnel affairs in the police force in
7 Q. When you say "we did not deal with personnel affairs in the
8 police force," you're meaning the ministers of the SBWS government and
9 the prime minister; correct?
10 A. Ministers and the prime minister.
11 MR. GILLETT: Could I get document P251.245.1. And this should
12 be the public version of tab 33.
13 Q. Now, sir, this is the decision on the dismissal of the secretary
14 of the SUP dated 16 October 1991. And it states:
15 "During its session on 16 October 1991, and in accordance with
16 Article 2, paragraph 1, item 6 on the Law on The government of the Serb
17 Region of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srijem, the government of the
18 Serb region of Slavonia, Baranja, and Western Srijem has passed a
19 decision on the dismissal of the secretary of the Vukovar Secretariat of
21 This is signed by the prime minister, Goran Hadzic, isn't it?
22 A. Yes. But this was the beginning, the early days, the 16th of
23 October. That position of secretary was still very high at that time.
24 So this can very well be true.
25 Q. So when you gave your answer that "we did not deal with personnel
1 affairs in the police force in depth," you were talking about a period
2 after 16 October 1991; correct?
3 A. When I say "in depth," I mean at the lower levels. This must
4 have been done at the proposal of the minister, the government must have
5 approved it, and then the prime minister signed it.
6 Q. You haven't answered my question. My question was about whether,
7 during the period up to 16 October 1991, the SBWS government was able to
8 deal with personnel affairs in the police force; is that correct?
9 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Zivanovic.
10 MR. ZIVANOVIC: In my understanding, the witness already answered
11 this question. He did not limit his answer on any -- any time.
12 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, the witness's answer agreed with me,
13 that it was signed by Goran Hadzic. This is at line 22. But then he
15 "But this was the beginning, the early days, the 16th of
17 I want to verify whether he's making a distinction in the period
18 of time as to when the government did or not -- did or did not have
19 powers in relation to the police in SBWS.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: However, again, the police force is too wide. It
21 is not -- it is vague. And he said we didn't went to depth. So -- so --
22 so I -- I -- I think it should be more precise. This question should be
23 more precise.
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: I'll allow the question, Mr. Zivanovic. And,
25 afterwards, after the answer, we can perhaps go into the issue of
1 high-ranking police officers or -- and -- and low-ranking ones.
2 MR. GILLETT: Thank you.
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: If we don't, we get composed questions and
4 problems with the answer.
5 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Mr. President.
6 Q. Firstly, it's correct that up to 16 October 1991 the SBWS
7 government, including Goran Hadzic, did deal with personnel matters of
8 the SBWS police; correct?
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Sorry. Again, it is a personal matters. As far
10 as I see these are not personal matters. It is appointments, official
11 appointment, or a dismissal. I don't believe that it is personal
12 matters. That we --
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: I think I heard personnel, not personal matters.
14 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Oh, okay. Sorry. Sorry.
15 MR. GILLETT: Correct. Thank you, Mr. President.
16 Q. So I'm talking about matters of employment hiring and firing.
17 And it's correct that the SBWS government and Mr. Hadzic could deal and
18 did deal with those matters up until 16 October 1991; right?
19 A. Not right.
20 Q. So you're saying that they did not take this decision on the
21 dismissal of the secretary of the Vukovar SUP on 16 October 1991?
22 A. I'm not saying that. I didn't say that. However, I may not even
23 have been at the session of the government when that was decided. I
24 never attended a session that would discuss personnel issues at the
25 police. There was just one secretary of the SUP. There were not several
1 SUP secretaries. It was at the very beginning.
2 Q. Again, sir, that's not the question I asked. The question I'm
3 asking is: Based on this document in front of us, we can see that on
4 16 October 1991 the SBWS government and the prime minister did take a
5 measure related to the hiring and firing of the secretary of the Vukovar
6 SUP; correct?
7 A. It is correct according to this document. But I don't remember
8 this discussion, discussion on Milakovic's appointment or dismissal. I
9 don't remember. Maybe I was simply not there. We never discussed any
10 such matters, no.
11 Q. In terms of police of lower ranks, did the SBWS government have
12 powers to hire or fire those police?
13 A. No, no. That was within the purview of secretaries,
14 lower-ranking commanders, and so on and so forth. They had a say in
16 Q. If the SBWS government could hire or fire higher-ranking police
17 members, such as this secretary, then they could influence the hiring or
18 firing of local police as well, couldn't they?
19 A. No. There was too much other work to leave room for things like
20 this. No, they never dealt with those issues.
21 Q. My question wasn't whether they dealt with those issues in actual
22 fact. It's whether they had the power to influence decisions concerning
23 lower-level police. And that's not the question --
24 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
25 MR. ZIVANOVIC: If we could have a clarification what does it
1 mean "had the power to influence"? I really don't understand it.
2 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, the --
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: I must admit that I'm at a loss as well,
4 Mr. Gillett. I mean, is that a power, what are you talking about now;
5 namely, that by -- by -- by hiring or firing a higher-ranking officer
6 they can indirectly, et cetera, et cetera?
7 MR. GILLETT: That's --
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: I mean, is that relevant for the witness to --
9 for -- is it that relevant? Is it appropriate for this witness to answer
10 these kind of questions?
11 MR. GILLETT: I -- I think we've exhausted this line of inquiry
12 on this issue. Thank you, Mr. President.
13 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you.
14 MR. GILLETT:
15 Q. Turning to the TO which you do mention in your statement and
16 you've mentioned a number of times today. You don't know whether the
17 SBWS minister of defence had power over the TO, do you?
18 A. [No interpretation]
19 Q. So you can't comment on the SBWS government's ability to command
20 or control the TO, can you?
21 A. The government did not control the TO. The TO was a reserve
22 force of the JNA, which means that the JNA, i.e., the military, commanded
23 the TO.
24 Q. That statement requires you to know that the SBWS minister of
25 defence could not control the TO; correct?
1 A. No, he could not. He was not in a position to do that. I
2 repeat -- let's make things clear. There's a period when I was minister,
3 and there is a period after that.
4 Q. Sir, can we look at paragraph 63 of your statement.
5 MR. GILLETT: And again, this is 1D2328. It's tab 1 for the
6 Prosecution exhibits. 63.
7 Q. You say:
8 "The TO was not under the control of the SAO SBWS government.
9 The TO was under the control of the JNA officers in the field. It is
10 possible that the minister of defence might have had some authority over
11 the TO. However, I don't really know about this."
12 Did I read that correctly?
13 A. Yes.
14 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, I see the time. I could start a new
15 line, but because it involves different documents, I wonder if we should
16 take the break now.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: And how long would you have?
18 MR. GILLETT: Remaining in cross-examination?
19 JUDGE DELVOIE: Yes.
20 MR. GILLETT: If I could get an estimate from the Registrar
21 kindly as to how much I've used, that may help.
22 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
23 JUDGE DELVOIE: 30 minutes left, Mr. Gillett.
24 MR. GILLETT: And is that 30 minutes left out of four hours? Am
25 I understanding right, I've used three and a half hours?
1 JUDGE DELVOIE: I suppose that's how the calculation is made.
2 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
3 JUDGE DELVOIE: You're right to ask that, Mr. Gillett. You have
4 one hour and 30 minutes left.
5 MR. GILLETT: Thank you. I would predict that I could finish
6 within an hour. I have one -- at least one major subject to go into
7 still with the witness.
8 JUDGE DELVOIE: Okay.
9 [Trial Chamber confers]
10 JUDGE DELVOIE: Mr. Milinkovic, we finish here for the day and
11 for the week. So we expect you to be back on Monday at 9.00.
12 In the meantime, you remain under oath, and that means two
13 things: First of all, you cannot have any contact with any of the
14 parties; and second, you cannot discuss your testimony with anybody, in
15 the street, or in the hotel, or whatever. Is that clear?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it is, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE DELVOIE: Thank you very much.
18 Court adjourned.
19 [The witness stands down]
20 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.00 p.m.,
21 to be reconvened on Monday, the 15th day of
22 September, 2014, at 9.00 a.m.