Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 1

1 Wednesday, 20 April 2005

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 9.17 a.m.

5 JUDGE LIU: Call the case, please, Mr. Court Deputy.

6 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number

7 IT-01-48-T, the Prosecutor versus Sefer Halilovic.

8 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. I have to apologise for the delay.

9 Judge Szenasi is not feeling well this morning so the remaining Judges,

10 according to Rule 15(B) decided to continue our proceedings today. And

11 this afternoon, we will have an extra sitting. Originally it was set at

12 4:00 but I believe that the initial appearance in another case will not

13 last that long, so we might start a little bit early, for instance 3:30

14 until 5:00, if the courtroom permits us.

15 Well, having said that, could we have the witness, please?

16 [The witness entered court]

17 JUDGE LIU: Good morning, Witness.

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.

19 JUDGE LIU: Are you ready to continue?

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

21 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.


23 [Witness answered through interpreter]

24 Examined by Mr. Re: [Continued]

25 Yes, Mr. Re.

Page 2

1 MR. RE:

2 Q. Good morning, Mr. Karavelic, yesterday I was showing you the order

3 from Sefer Halilovic, that was P161, of the 2nd of September 1993, asking

4 for the delta unit parts of the 9th and 10th Brigade and -- and then

5 Solakovic's unit. What was your response to receiving that order from

6 Sefer Halilovic? Firstly, do you need to see it again on the screen or do

7 you remember it sufficiently?

8 A. I remember it. There is no need to put it on the screen.

9 Q. What was your response to receiving the order?

10 A. I don't know. I can't say anything in particular about what the

11 reaction was. It was within the range of a normal reaction.

12 Q. What, yours or Mr. Halilovic's?

13 A. My reaction. I'm thinking of myself.

14 Q. What did you do?

15 A. We are talking about the moment when I received the order, the

16 last one that we were looking at yesterday.

17 Q. Not the very moment, but what did you do in response to receiving

18 it? Did you act on it? Did you -- did you obey it? Did you refuse to

19 obey it? Did you contact someone? Did you contact Mr. Halilovic? What

20 did you do?

21 A. I don't remember doing anything in particular. I think I got in

22 touch with Rasim Delic who also confirmed that I should act in accordance

23 with Sefer Halilovic's order and then after that, I started to implement

24 the order of the Chief of Staff of the main -- the Supreme Command Staff.

25 Q. Why did you contact Rasim Delic after having received

Page 3

1 Mr. Halilovic's order?

2 A. Simply because of a basic military rule. The commander of the

3 Main Staff is a superior to the corps commander, and that is one of the

4 main reasons why I got in touch with General Rasim Delic.

5 Q. Mr. Halilovic was your superior in -- was senior to you in the

6 Bosnian army. Why did you feel it necessary to contact General Delic

7 after having received -- you having received an order from someone who was

8 senior to you in the army?

9 A. I think I was quite specific in my previous answer, if we

10 understand what military hierarchy means, and what command and control

11 means, and what the chain of command means.

12 Q. Well, what was it about receiving an order from Mr. Halilovic, who

13 was the Chief of the Main Staff that caused you to contact Rasim Delic to

14 seek his confirmation of that order?

15 A. Well, if you would like me to say anything more, well, I can say

16 that at that point in time, I did not have access to the order which I

17 only saw once I came to The Hague, which General -- in which General Delic

18 named Sefer Halilovic as the head of the team to carry out certain tasks

19 in the Neretva River valley to do some things relating to the 4th and the

20 6th corps. This was an order of the 30th of August. At that point in

21 time I was not quite sure why I was supposed to send units to the Neretva

22 River valley and this is the reason why I contacted Rasim Delic.

23 Q. Had you seen a copy of the order of the 30th of August at the

24 time, would you have sent the troops without contacting Rasim Delic?

25 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

Page 4

1 MR. MORRISSEY: It's an objection because of a speculative

2 question.

3 JUDGE LIU: Yes, I believe so. It's a hypothetical question.

4 MR. RE: I withdraw the question in that form.

5 Q. Mr. Karavelic, I just want you to clarify something from your last

6 answer in which you said that you saw that order when you came to The

7 Hague. Would seeing that order in 1993 have made any difference to

8 whether or not you would have called Rasim Delic in the normal course of

9 your response to receiving such an order from Mr. Halilovic?

10 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, it's exactly the same question just

11 twice as long.

12 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

13 MR. RE: Your Honour, I'm pressing the question because the

14 witness has given an answer in which he has alluded to the fact that

15 seeing that order may have made some difference. I'm attempting to

16 clarify whether that order if he had seen that order it would have made

17 any difference to whether or not he felt the need to contact Rasim Delic.

18 That is if that order standing alone, if he'd had access to it, would have

19 conveyed information to him that he didn't need to get from Rasim Delic.

20 It goes to the whole question of subordination and where Mr. Halilovic

21 fitted in and why the witness felt the need to contact Mr. Delic.

22 JUDGE LIU: Well, maybe the final aim is justified, but this

23 question actually is not proper one because it's asking the witness to

24 speculate.

25 MR. RE: Is it any more speculating than if you asked a witness,

Page 5

1 "If you received this order from your commander, what should your

2 response have been?" "Within the normal military chain -- within the

3 normal military doctrine, that is had you seen this order appointing

4 Mr. Halilovic as head of the team, would you have needed to" --

5 JUDGE LIU: My suggestion is that you may ask a general question

6 without mentioning that particular order, just as a normal, routine

7 practice in the army.

8 MR. RE: Thank you.

9 Q. Mr. Karavelic, in terms of your experience and knowledge of

10 military doctrine and subordination within the Bosnian army, if a -- if

11 the commander, supreme commander, appoints a certain officer as -- to lead

12 a team allowing certain things, what would your response be -- what is the

13 normal response of someone in your position to seeing such an order?

14 A. There is a very often used rule. It existed in the Army of Bosnia

15 and Herzegovina and I believe that it exists in most of the world armies.

16 When a commander issues an order to a commander, a superior to his

17 lower-ranking officer, then there is no need to comment or double check or

18 anything like that. However, very often, we have a situation in which

19 specifically in the staff of the supreme -- in the Supreme Command staff

20 of the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, some orders or types of documents

21 were issued by a deputy, Jovo Divjak, that was one deputy, or the other

22 deputy Stjepan Siber, and they issued also -- the chiefs of the

23 administrations of the Supreme Command staff also issued all kinds of

24 instructions, orders, and so on. All such orders which were issued by

25 members of the Supreme Command Staff are issued in the name of the

Page 6

1 commander. It was quite often the case that the corps commanders, when

2 such documents would arrive from officers or generals who were members of

3 that staff, would check and ask the commander, specifically we're talking

4 about Mr. Rasim Delic in this case, is this so and so, are you backing

5 this particular order? Has this been coordinated or not, depending on the

6 matter involved, because the commander of the Supreme Command staff is a

7 superior to all the corps commanders.

8 Q. Do -- when you spoke to Mr. Delic, did he tell you what Mr.

9 Halilovic was doing, and why he wanted those particular troops?

10 A. I can't really remember the whole conversation, but the gist of it

11 was that, yes, I should act according to the orders and that was it.

12 MR. RE: Could the witness please be shown the next document which

13 is 65 ter number 40, 01831484?

14 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI 382.

15 MR. RE: It's a document dated the 2nd of September, an order from

16 Mr. Halilovic, or a request, to the 1st Corps Command, personally to the

17 commander. Have you seen that document before?

18 A. There were many documents, perhaps I did and perhaps I did not,

19 but most likely I did see it before.

20 Q. The time stamp on this one is -- I'm sorry, can you tell me when

21 your corps received it? I think if you look in the top left-hand corner.

22 A. It states here, Sarajevo, the date and the time, the 3rd of

23 September, so it was in the night between the 2nd and the 3rd, at 1 a.m.

24 Q. It says that "We request that you send an urgent response

25 regarding the order for your units to move into the Neretva valley,

Page 7

1 indicate when a unit will move, and state its numerical strength so that

2 its reception and transport can be organised." What was your response to

3 this?

4 A. I think that all the contacts after that talked about the fact

5 that preparations of my units were underway and that -- date and the time

6 when the units would move out. So to carry out all the preparations and

7 make it possible for the units to move out.

8 MR. RE: I move to tender that into evidence.

9 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Morrissey?

10 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours this one raises an interesting

11 question of the way that Your Honours admit these documents because,

12 although the witness hasn't said that he specifically saw it, frankly, he

13 would have seen thousands of documents and he can't be expected to

14 remember each one. It seems to have been addressed to his corps and there

15 seems to be a sensible basis on which one can infer that it would have

16 passed through his hands and been seen. Therefore, although he doesn't

17 remember specifically seeing it, in this case, this is different to some

18 of the other orders and some of the other documents that have come along

19 where the people say "I know nothing about it at all." So it's really a

20 matter for the Tribunal but I would say the Defence doesn't strongly

21 oppose its being admitted because it's likely that he saw it so the

22 Defence doesn't oppose its admission but it remains a matter for Your

23 Honour of course.

24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much indeed. I believe that your

25 position is very reasonable.

Page 8

1 So this document is admitted into the evidence.

2 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Prosecution exhibit P382.

3 MR. RE:

4 Q. Having received those two -- the order and the request from

5 Mr. Halilovic, did you in fact order the soldiers he specified the Delta

6 Brigade the 2nd Independent Battalion and parts of the 9th and the 10th,

7 did you in fact order them to go to Bradina in accordance with the order

8 of the 2nd of September 1993?

9 A. Based on the order from the Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command,

10 and also based on an order which came later from the chief dated the 20th

11 of September, when he also asked for more units, without actually naming

12 the specific units, I issued many orders to these units of mine that went

13 there and that were supposed to go there but did not actually go.

14 MR. RE: Could the witness please be shown Prosecution Exhibit 65

15 ter 43, 00585512?


17 MR. RE:

18 Q. While that document is coming, were the orders you issued to the

19 subordinate units in writing or oral?

20 A. Both oral and written orders have the same weight. My rule, as a

21 military man, is to try to issue written orders and also to ask for such

22 orders from my superiors.

23 Q. Have a look at the document on the screen, MFI 383. It's an order

24 under -- with your name on it and your signature, of the 4th of September

25 1993, addressed to the motorised brigade, to Ramiz Delalic in person. Is

Page 9

1 that an order which you issued on the 4th of September 1993 to Ramiz

2 Delalic?

3 A. As far as I remember, yes, unless I'm mistaken.

4 Q. Did you issue that -- was that an order you issued in response to

5 Mr. Halilovic's order to you, confirmed by Mr. Delic?

6 A. It is stated in the first paragraph, in the introductory paragraph

7 of this order.

8 Q. The first part of the order says, you order, one, the immediate

9 formation of a company of 50 soldiers, that's two platoons of 25 soldiers

10 each, all organisational preparations shall be undertaken and the company

11 shall be ready to move towards Bradina.

12 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours the translation that I have says that

13 the -- that the order says "immediately select men for a 50-strong

14 company." It doesn't suggest the formation of a company at all, which may

15 be technically quite a different thing. So I don't know if my friend has

16 got a different translation than I have, but the actual words ought to be

17 used if it's being put in that way.

18 JUDGE LIU: Well, at first glance, there is no major differences

19 between the two translations, but, however, we are doing a specific work

20 here so I believe that the translation issue is important. So would you

21 please allow the Prosecution to proceed and after this seeking we will

22 entrust the translation office to check the translation of this document.

23 Of course, during your cross-examination, you may use your own version of

24 this document.

25 MR. MORRISSEY: Could I just say Your Honours I certainly am far

Page 10

1 from wanting to start another difficulty on that topic, and it may simply

2 be a translation problem. The witness himself, because he's got the

3 original document there, he can comment on what is said there better than

4 perhaps I can with my English translation. So I just alert the Tribunal

5 to the fact that I've got a different one. Anyway I've done what I have

6 to do.

7 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.

8 MR. RE: Could I inquire whether Mr. Morrissey has an

9 interpretation, a translation which the Defence have obtained or a draft?

10 The one I'm reading from is the final translation. That may solve it. If

11 he has the draft one, that may solve it.

12 JUDGE LIU: Yes, but first of all you may ask the witness himself

13 to read the first sentence, to see what his understanding of that

14 sentence.

15 MR. RE: Your Honour there is no issue about it. As Your Honour

16 pointed out, whether it's immediate, and if it's translated there had way

17 it's not going to be a proper translation, it's going to be an

18 interpretation. So we won't get it precisely.

19 JUDGE LIU: Of course. We quite understand that. But that's a

20 request put by the Defence.

21 MR. RE:

22 Q. If I can remember where I was -- excuse me for a moment. Just go

23 to paragraph 1 of that order, Mr. Karavelic. Relating to the translation

24 I have it says the immediate formation. I'm not so much interested in the

25 word "immediate." I'm more interested in why you asked or why you ordered

Page 11

1 a company of 50 soldiers.

2 A. The answer to that question is very complex for a number of

3 reasons. When a small number of men from a larger unit is requested, as

4 is the case here, it is impossible very often to ask the brigade commander

5 to allocate an establishment company or a platoon, depending on the way

6 the work is organised in his area of responsibility, in terms of

7 maintaining the line of defence. If a company is divided into three

8 parts, a third maintaining the line, a third is resting, and a third is in

9 reserve, or actually a third is resting at home, it's difficult to disrupt

10 this organisation with requests. So very often we would just instruct the

11 brigade commander that such and such a number of men is required and to

12 organise a certain number of men who know each other anyway in order that

13 a certain task can be carried out. However as a soldier I have to admit

14 that the best way to do it is to send establishment units to implement

15 tasks. However, this was not always possible.

16 Q. Were you by that order intending Mr. Delalic to select the men

17 himself?

18 A. Probably before I drafted the order, I talked to the brigade

19 commander. Sulejman Imsirevic, and I can't be quite sure about it, but I

20 seem to vaguely recall that Sulejman Imsirevic said that Ramiz Delalic

21 would be responsible for that unit that would be sent to implement that

22 particular task. And this is why my officers who drafted this order -- I

23 didn't draft it myself but I signed it, and I stand by it -- addressed it

24 to Ramiz Delalic as deputy commander of that brigade.

25 Q. Within the normal military hierarchy, or chain of command, was it

Page 12

1 normal for you as the corps commander to send an order -- such an order

2 addressed personally to the deputy commander of a subordinate unit?

3 A. Please, you need to pay attention that the first line states

4 "command of the 9th Motorised Brigade." The command, to the command.

5 And that command includes all of its organs headed by the commander, along

6 with the previous answer that I gave, it only formally states "for Ramiz

7 Delalic, personally," because he was probably entrusted by the commander

8 to carry out that task. A commander has much broader duties and tasks.

9 We are talking here about 50 if fighters but his brigade numbered probably

10 about 4.000 soldiers.

11 Q. Okay, but in terms of the normal military hierarchy, was it a

12 normal practice for a corps commander such as you to send such an order

13 noted on it to Ramiz Delalic as a deputy commander in person?

14 A. All my deputies in the command of the 1st Corps, the assistant for

15 legal affairs, for morale, for logistics, for finance, the Chief of Staff

16 et cetera et cetera, they, when they were drafting their documents, they

17 would prepare those documents and then bring them to me as the corps

18 commander for my signature, and I would sign the original just like this

19 document that I signed, and then they would address these documents to

20 their people according to the vertical line. For instance, if an

21 assistant for legal affairs made such a document, he would then address it

22 to the other counterpart, the 9th Motorised Brigade, the deputy for legal

23 affairs, and I would sign it as the corps commander. So this is the

24 military rule and it does not -- it is not in breach of the rules of

25 service in any way whatsoever or of the chain of command.

Page 13

1 Q. Where is Bradina, which is referred to in the first order?

2 A. Somewhere midway between Sarajevo and Jablanica, or perhaps a bit

3 closer to Sarajevo.

4 Q. What -- was it your understanding that Ramiz Delalic was to

5 accompany that company to Bradina?

6 A. I cannot be specific about that. His brigade commander knew that

7 actually he was the one who knew that, whether he had actually assigned

8 him to that task or not. I don't know whether he was there in the Neretva

9 River valley all that time with the unit. It is quite possible that he

10 had permission from his brigade commander for that.

11 Q. Did he have your permission to go to Bradina?

12 A. I just told you I didn't give any permissions to Ramiz Delalic or

13 not. It was his brigade commander. He was his deputy. He was not my

14 deputy. So his assignment to any task would be decided by his brigade

15 commander.

16 I made a decisions when it came to the departure of brigade

17 commanders and that is the basic difference, and that is a strict military

18 rule.

19 Q. Did it require your permission for brigade commanders to leave

20 Sarajevo?

21 A. Yes, that's exactly what I just said. My previous replies in

22 answer to this question that you just put me. But this only applied to

23 the brigade commanders, to the next lowest in ranks -- in rank.

24 Q. All right. I move to tender that document into evidence.

25 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

Page 14

1 MR. MORRISSEY: No objection.

2 JUDGE LIU: Thank you, it's admitted into evidence.

3 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Prosecution Exhibit P383.

4 MR. RE:

5 Q. Now that's an issue -- P383 is an order you issued to Ramiz

6 Delalic in person. Did you also issue orders, similar orders, to the 2nd

7 Independent Brigade, the Delta Brigade, and the 10th Mountain Brigade?

8 A. I believe that I also answered this question in one of my previous

9 answers. The answer is yes.

10 Q. And again, in case we missed something, was it -- were the orders

11 issued in writing, sorry, did you issue the orders in writing to those

12 subordinate units?

13 A. Most often, it was -- they were in writing.

14 Q. Could we please move to 65 ter number 42, 02122410?

15 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI 384.

16 MR. RE:

17 Q. Having issued those orders, the written orders to the four

18 subordinate units, did you respond to Mr. Halilovic?

19 A. We have to make it clear when we talk about these four units, I'm

20 not sure whether up to that point, the Delta Brigade was subordinated to

21 me. We should -- we would need to check the documents. I really cannot

22 recall it myself. I'm not quite sure whether it was an organic component

23 of the 1st Corps at that time or not. That needs to be clarified.

24 Q. All right. Did you respond to Mr. Halilovic?

25 A. I think that I did. I replied to him on a number of occasions in

Page 15

1 my documents. I'm not quite sure what document you are referring to or

2 what particular instance you're referring to.

3 Q. Hopefully there should be one on the screen now dated the 4th of

4 September 1993, order 5/10-48, under your hand, addressed to

5 Mr. Halilovic, chief of the Supreme Command, personally, and Vehbija Karic

6 in Jablanica.

7 A. Yes, I see it.

8 Q. Is that a response that you sent to Mr. Halilovic on the 4th of

9 September 1993?

10 A. Quite probably. This particular document does not mean anything

11 much to me because these are minor things. I see the document. It is

12 quite possible that it is. If it is a valid document, it means that it is

13 such a response.

14 Q. Look at paragraph 1 which says "between 180" -- sorry, "between

15 160 and 180 troops will be ready this evening at 2200 hours on 4th of

16 September, 1993, in accordance with your order which we have received."

17 Where did you receive the information from that there were -- that

18 you had that number of troops ready to go?

19 A. Please, these are questions that are beyond any conceivable --

20 where did I get them from? My inferiors.

21 Q. The second part of the order says that "the troops should report

22 to Nedzad Nadzic or Salko Muminovic at the IKM on Igman, 2200 hours." Was

23 that -- was that particular piece of information related to the earlier

24 order, part 3 of the earlier order in which you said they were going to

25 Igman? Is that a way of informing Mr. Halilovic that that was what was

Page 16

1 happening?

2 A. That precisely can be seen from this document.

3 MR. RE: I move to tender that into evidence.

4 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, this is in the same category as that

5 other order. He can't remember it but he probably dealt with it. We

6 don't object to it.

7 JUDGE LIU: Yes. So it's admitted into evidence.

8 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Prosecution Exhibit P384.

9 MR. RE:

10 Q. Did those soldiers in fact leave that night? That was the night

11 in which the order or the response indicates they were ready to go.

12 That's the 4th of September, 1993.

13 A. Throughout the four years of the war, I extracted from Sarajevo

14 perhaps over 100.000, 100.000 soldiers. What I'm saying is that some of

15 them actually came in and went out four or five times from the city. So

16 to remember all these details in such a huge machinery, where the

17 commander is just a cog in this organisation, the kind of organisational

18 work that you have in a corps formation which has 75.000 people is just a

19 person who approves different actions and requires of his men to be

20 conscientious and responsible and not to actually create any situations

21 that would push him beyond the law or to act in contravention of the rules

22 of service. So it is hard for me to remember all these details at this

23 point. If this is the first such departure, and I believe that it is, I

24 believe that we had certain problems with the units sitting out because of

25 the inclement weather. As far as I can remember, from what I read in

Page 17

1 another document, I believe that on that occasion, it was postponed by 24

2 hours on account of the bad weather.

3 Q. All right. Well, that's actually the shorthand way of answering

4 that, and can you please, please, answer in the shorthand way? We will be

5 here for a long time if you don't. I'm going to show that document now.

6 A. Yes. I apologise but I do not want -- I would not like to be

7 misunderstood. Four years of warfare and you're asking me whether on a

8 specific night 50 or a different number of people left the town, but I'm

9 telling you that I sent hundreds and thousands of men through Igman,

10 through Mount Igman, for days in and out, throughout the four years, and

11 you're asking me about a specific night. I cannot remember. I just want

12 to make that point. Because I don't want the Court to draw a mistaken

13 conclusion from what I'm saying.

14 JUDGE LIU: The proceeding in this Court, Witness, is that you

15 have to answer the questions put to you by the parties. If you are not

16 sure about the answer, you may simply say "No, I don't remember." If the

17 Prosecution needs some explanations, he will ask you the follow-up

18 questions. And we also will give you the opportunity to explain your

19 answer, if you feel you need to do so. However, it is -- the party asking

20 the questions leads you through those evidence.

21 Gentlemen, Mr. Re.

22 MR. RE: Can the witness please be shown P290? Is it on the

23 screen now?

24 Q. Mr. Karavelic can you please look at P290? You referred a moment

25 ago to seeing a document. I think you'll find this document bears your

Page 18

1 name. It's dated the 5th of September 1993. It's addressed to the Chief

2 of Staff of the Supreme Command, Jablanica, to Sefer Halilovic personally.

3 Now, does that assist with your recollection of whether or not the

4 soldiers left on the night of the 4th of September, which was referred to

5 in the previous order, or information, that is Exhibit P384?

6 A. Possibly. I cannot recall with certainty.

7 Q. All right. Is this an order which was sent under your hand?

8 A. If it is a valid document, there is no signature here.

9 Q. All right. Let's go to the first part of the document. It's

10 addressed to Mr. Halilovic. And it says personally. And in Jablanica.

11 Was it your understanding that that's where he was at that time?

12 A. It is not mine as the inferior officer to know where my superior

13 is. That is a strict military rule. I received my documents from

14 Jablanica and I sent documents to Jablanica.

15 Q. All right. Thank you. Now, the heading is, "in connection with

16 your order, confidential, 015363-1-2/93 of the 2nd of September 1993 from

17 Jablanica, I hereby forward a response." The document bearing that number

18 was P383 which was the order of the 4th of September 1993. I'm sorry,

19 which was the order of the 2nd of September 1993. Let's go to the first

20 part, paragraph 1, "At 2200 hours last night, 4/5 September 1993, a

21 company from the 10th, 130 soldiers, and a company from the 9th, 60

22 soldiers were, ready for the task in question. All organisational

23 material preparations with these units had been completed. At 2230 hours,

24 when the vehicles arrived due to a major storm Caco and Celo personally

25 proposed to me that the departure be postponed for 24 hours. However,

Page 19

1 after that in the course of the day today it was put off completely. I am

2 aware of the overall situation in a your area in the zone of the 4th and

3 6th corps [unfortunately such are the circumstances]."

4 Now, does that information recorded there accord with your

5 recollection of what happened? Was there a storm which delayed the

6 departure of these soldiers?

7 A. Yes, I think so.

8 Q. Did Celo and Caco personally propose to you that the departure be

9 postponed for 24 hours?

10 A. What do you mean when you say "personally"?

11 Q. Does the document in Bosnian say something different to personal?

12 I'm just relying on the translation I have. Please look at it.

13 A. Yes. I can see the document very well. Especially if I wrote it,

14 and it does say personally. But are you asking me whether they actually

15 did personally propose to me that this be done? So I'm asking you what do

16 you mean by that personally.

17 Q. Maybe there is a confusion. Did they propose to you, impersonally

18 or personally, that the departure be postponed for 24 hours?

19 A. If I may be allowed a minute more, we are now sitting here 12

20 years after the fact in this nice room. 12 years after.

21 Q. Before you go on, please be aware we do have an understanding that

22 it's a long time ago and as His Honour Judge Liu said, if you don't

23 remember --

24 A. You don't understand me.

25 Q. I'm trying to focus your answers to the questions I'm asking you.

Page 20

1 If you don't remember or you're not sure, please just tell us.

2 A. This document would normally be prepared by my staff, and my

3 officers from my staff actually drafted this document. I as the corps

4 commander did not draft documents. That is why what the command and

5 the -- of a hundred people and the whole staff were there for. And they

6 put that there, that Caco and Celo had personally proposed this. Now, who

7 talked to them, it is possible that I did myself. I do not remember that.

8 Perhaps it was my assistants, the officers who drafted this document that

9 talked to them. And they proposed saying that the weather was bad during

10 that night, that we should not send the people there because of the

11 possible consequences and so on and so forth. This is why I asked you why

12 you -- what do you mean by "personally"? Because you're asking me a very

13 direct and concrete question. I can tell you I don't know, I don't

14 remember, I didn't see, but that is not what I want to do because I

15 respect this Court. I want to be as precise as possible, as clear as

16 possible, but my just responding, I don't know, I haven't -- I didn't hear

17 it or something to that effect, I am not clear enough and not precise

18 enough in my opinion.

19 Q. It is perfectly clear now. Move to the next part. "However,

20 after that, in the course of the day today, it was put off completely."

21 Is that correct? There was a storm and it was put off, it was postponed

22 and then put off? Is that correct?

23 A. Yes, probably. The way -- the way it is written in the document,

24 I myself do not remember that at all, that particular day, I cannot recall

25 that particular day at this point in time, today.

Page 21

1 Q. Can you please look at the stamp on the document? Does that

2 indicate to you that the document was sent and received in Jablanica?

3 A. The stamp that we can see is the stamp of the communications

4 centre service, which, through communication parcels were -- would send or

5 dispatch or receive documents. So this is just a stamp which attests to

6 the fact that a document had been sent, i.e. received, as indicated, i.e.,

7 as addressed.

8 Q. Could you please move now to document P116. Have you seen this

9 document before coming to The Hague? That's a document dated the 6th of

10 September -- I'm sorry, the 5th of September 1993, from the Jablanica

11 IKM.

12 MR. MORRISSEY: I'm sorry, Your Honours, just before we get to

13 that matter, I'm -- I -- I might have missed it. Did my learned friend

14 seek to tender the previous document or not?

15 JUDGE LIU: I believe that the previous document is admitted

16 already.

17 MR. MORRISSEY: I'm sorry, yes.

18 MR. RE:

19 Q. The question is: Have you -- had you seen that document, P116,

20 before you came to The Hague to testify?

21 A. I think I have, if I'm not wrong.

22 Q. Where did you see it before coming to The Hague?

23 A. In the archives of the federation army.

24 Q. Paragraph 1, it's addressed to Sefer Halilovic personally, and

25 purportedly from SVK members, Amidza, Rifat, and Zicko -- paragraph 1

Page 22

1 says, "We received a reply from Vaha, explaining that they will not be

2 able to send any soldiers due to recent developments. Sefer, we need to

3 find and pull out other soldiers from Sarajevo because we cannot do the

4 job without a reserve of 200 soldiers."

5 Were -- do you believe that you're the Vaha in question referred

6 to in that document?

7 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours I'm sorry to interrupt again here

8 I've got a different document on the screen. I know what's happened, I

9 think, here, but the English translation that my learned friend read out

10 is quite different to what I've got and it's not a different translation.

11 I think it's actually a different but similar document. There are two

12 documents very like this in existence, and I think my friend has read out

13 one and what's on the screen on my computer now, I'm guessing, is the

14 other one. We are not suggesting any sinister plot here; I think it's

15 just a confusion. But I think I better point that out because the one

16 I've got doesn't mention the figure "200 soldiers." I don't know what --

17 which one Your Honours have got on the screen there or which one the

18 Prosecutors have got on their screen, frankly. There is such a document,

19 I'm very familiar with what my learned friend read out, and I think it's

20 on another similar piece of correspondence. But we just better make sure

21 we are all looking at the right one before we go any further.

22 JUDGE LIU: Can you tell us what's the number of the other

23 document?

24 MR. MORRISSEY: It -- it -- it hasn't been admitted yet.

25 JUDGE LIU: I see.

Page 23

1 MR. MORRISSEY: We've got an internal Defence numbering system of

2 it, but I don't know if that would help the -- the Prosecutors in any way.

3 There -- there are two on the same day. I think the Prosecutors have

4 better find it. So far as I can help, I know there are two sent by the

5 same Amidza, Rifat, and it might be inferred that's Karic, Belajic

6 [phoen], and Suljevic. And that they sent two letters addressed to Sefer

7 Halilovic in Sarajevo concerning the news that they got from this witness.

8 So that's what I think it is. And I think the Prosecutors might have both

9 or might have -- but anyway the one on the screen is one and he -- I

10 don't think my friend's read from the other one. So we better just make

11 sure we've got the same thing.

12 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.

13 MR. RE: My learned friend Mr. Morrissey is entirely correct. I

14 had stapled the wrong English translation to the -- I just switched them.

15 I apologise, Mr. Karavelic and to the Court, I should actually be

16 reading the English translation which says, "We have been informed by Vaha

17 that he won't be sending us the troops that we were -- that were deployed

18 to Hrasnica. We -- he promised that he would send us a more detailed

19 explanation as to the reason for this decision but we haven't received any

20 as yet." It's the same question: Do you believe that you're the Vaha in

21 question being referred to there?

22 A. This is not my document. This is a document that the three

23 persons who signed it, and in which they are sending this information to

24 Sefer Halilovic. How they acquired this information is known only to

25 them. They did call me Vaha often so I assume that it is me.

Page 24

1 Q. And you had in fact sent them some information saying you

2 wouldn't -- the troops wouldn't be arriving that night, hadn't you?

3 A. I don't believe so. I don't remember.

4 Q. I think we just did that a few moments ago, looked at a document

5 you sent saying that the troops weren't coming because of the storm.

6 A. Then that's it. I thought that you meant something else, just

7 now, when you put the question to me. That is that document. It's a

8 document dated the 5th, and this document here is dated the 6th. So in

9 the first document, it says that they are not going to send anything, and

10 that's how I understand this document, that they will not send anything.

11 That's why I gave you the answer that I'm not sure whether I ever said

12 that I would not send them the units. However, the document of the 1st

13 states why the departure time was delayed, of the units.

14 Q. Do you know of anyone else in Sarajevo called Vaha who was sending

15 troops to the forward command post in Jablanica?

16 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, there is two things to raise there.

17 I'd object to cross-examining of this witness firstly, but secondly I

18 don't think it's it maybe a controversy about nothing. I don't think the

19 witness is contesting what's being said and I can indicate I'm not going

20 to oppose the tendering of this document, so my friend may not need to go

21 through these steps if he -- if he chooses not to. But in any event I

22 submit there shouldn't be cross-examining of the witness.

23 JUDGE LIU: But at least we have to know the answer from this

24 witness, who is the Vaha mentioned in this document.

25 MR. MORRISSEY: If it needs to be clarified, then I say no more.

Page 25

1 JUDGE LIU: It's just a clarification.

2 MR. RE:

3 Q. My question is was there anyone else you know of called Vaha in

4 Sarajevo who was sending troops to the forward command post -- or at the

5 direction of the forward command post in Jablanica?

6 A. If you look at the transcript in my previous answer I answered

7 this, that probably it is me. The question is repeated.

8 MR. RE: Could the witness please be shown P122?

9 MR. MORRISSEY: I'm sorry just before we get to that one, is that

10 previous document going to be tendered?

11 JUDGE LIU: I believe they are already admitted into evidence.

12 MR. MORRISSEY: The previous one?

13 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

14 MR. MORRISSEY: My apologies. I apologise. I've done that twice

15 now and I'm just making sure. I've got a list which I thought was -- my

16 apologies.

17 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

18 MR. RE:

19 Q. P122, is it on the screen there? It's an order of the 6th of

20 September 1993 from Mr. Halilovic. Now, have you -- had you seen that

21 document before you came to The Hague to testify?

22 A. I think that I saw this document for the first time when I was

23 giving you my third statement in Sarajevo at your offices in Nedzarici.

24 This was about a year and a half or two years ago. I did not see this

25 document during the war.

Page 26

1 Q. While we are with this document, I want to ask you about

2 subordination. The order from Mr. Halilovic, P161, the order of the 2nd

3 of September, ordered you to send the soldiers to Bradina where the 1st

4 Corps command would take them over. In military subordination terms, what

5 did that mean about who was in control or command of the troops from the

6 time they left Sarajevo until they got to Bradina?

7 A. I think that you made a lapse when you said that they should be

8 taken over by the 1st Corps. I think it's supposed to be the 4th Corps in

9 Gradina -- Bradina.

10 Q. We are actually both wrong. It was actually the 6th, sorry. But

11 what was the effect of that -- of that order in terms of the

12 subordination? Who was in command and control of the troops from when

13 they left Sarajevo to when they got to Bradina?

14 A. In this specific case, I had the authority to command and control.

15 This was my chain of command. It's important to say my chain of command.

16 I did not directly command these companies, these two companies. On the

17 other hand, I did have command and control in accordance with the chain of

18 command. So as the corps commander, I did have command from the top down,

19 and as such, I had the authority of control and command over these

20 companies up until the point in time when they arrived at their

21 destination and reported to the Supreme Command group which was headed by

22 General Sefer Halilovic. After that, the chain of command which

23 functioned, which was established, in the course of the implementation of

24 the Neretva-93 operation, this chain of command had command and control

25 over them.

Page 27

1 Q. And when did you receive command and control back over those

2 particular soldiers who went to Herzegovina? What I mean is, when were

3 they back under your subordination? At what point?

4 A. On their return to their home unit.

5 Q. You mean to Sarajevo?

6 A. It could be, but it could be at another point where the units were

7 handed over. It could have been in Bradina, it could have been in

8 Sarajevo, in Jablanica. It depends on the way the order is regulated.

9 But let's say that it would be Sarajevo.

10 Q. We started at 9.20. Do Your Honours want -- wish me to continue?

11 It's an hour and ten minutes.

12 JUDGE LIU: I'm entirely in your hands. If you finished with this

13 document, we might have a break but if you did not, you may continue.

14 MR. RE: Thank you. I'll continue with the document, then,

15 general.

16 Q. You've just told us that from the -- that Mr. Halilovic's chain of

17 command -- chain of command had command and control over those soldiers

18 once they reached their destination and reported to the Supreme Command

19 group headed by Mr. Halilovic. I want you to have a look at this

20 document, and the paragraph that says, "units from the 1st" -- "units from

21 the 1st" -- I withdraw that. The first paragraph, it says, "With regard

22 to previous 6th corps units tasked combat operations in the 4th Corps zone

23 of responsibility and the engagement of the Zulfikar Reconnaissance

24 Sabotage Brigade on the axis Vrdi village, Goranci village towards Mostar,

25 the following units are," I think it says "resubordinated," "to this

Page 28

1 brigade, Dreznica Battalion and units from the 1st Corps." Now, what is

2 the meaning of that in military terms?

3 MR. MORRISSEY: Just a moment, before that is dealt with,

4 Your Honours, there is an -- I've got a complaint to make here. My

5 learned friend took the witness back to commenting on a previous order.

6 That was the order back -- which directed the troops to go to Bradina.

7 And be taken over by the 6th corps. But then at all times this particular

8 document has been placed on the screen and it's not clear at what point my

9 learned friend moves from commentary on the previous situation under the

10 Bradina order to the situation under this order, if the witness has got

11 anything to say about this order, if he's seen it before or if he had

12 reason to know about it before. And there has to be clarity about that

13 because the original hypothetical or the original scenario upon which this

14 witness was asked to comment was that first order, the one which

15 effectively wasn't complied with. We've now moved to something that's

16 later in time so that has to be very clearly delineated because things can

17 change.

18 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Maybe Mr. Re, first of all you have to establish

19 the relationship between the previous document and this one in clear

20 terms. Secondly, you may come to this document, you may test the

21 knowledge of this witness on whether he received this document before or

22 he ever saw this document before.

23 MR. RE: The witness has already said he saw it I think 18 months

24 ago when the Prosecution interviewed him. He didn't receive it at the

25 time. There is no question about him receiving it at the time. The first

Page 29

1 document I was referring to was the order to send the troops to Jablanica.

2 I'm asking him to comment in military terms on what the resubordination

3 means. It was an introduction. I'm very confused by what my learned

4 friend was actually putting to Your Honour. But if clarification is

5 required, I'm very happy to assist. But I'm not quite sure what the

6 confusion is.

7 JUDGE LIU: Maybe you have to establish a sequence of the two

8 documents.

9 MR. RE:

10 Q. Mr. Karavelic, I've moved from the first document, which was the

11 one where the 2nd of September where Mr. Halilovic requested certain

12 troops. I just moved to your evidence where you said that they were

13 subordinated to you until they went to the Supreme Command in Jablanica

14 and then they were within Mr. Halilovic's chain of command. So now I'm

15 moving to this document dated the 6th of September and I'm asking you to

16 comment on what paragraph 1 means in military terms, based upon the order

17 Mr. Halilovic sent to you earlier, to send the troops there, your response

18 to him, the troops going there, if they did, and what that actually means

19 in terms of the subordination you've just given evidence about?

20 MR. MORRISSEY: Well, that exposes the reason why the confusion

21 occurred, Your Honour. Would Your Honour just look to line 15 of this --

22 sorry, line 14 of my learned friend's question. The question has this

23 lengthy preamble to it explaining that -- and at that line it says that

24 the -- Mr. Re is putting it to the witness that he says that the units

25 were subordinated within Mr. Halilovic's chain of command. Now, he hasn't

Page 30

1 said anything like that, that they were subordinated within

2 Mr. Halilovic's chain of command. It has yet to be established that this

3 witness says that Mr. Halilovic had any chain of command at the moment.

4 Now the witness has got to give the evidence step by step in a

5 proper way and you can't have those preambles to questions particularly

6 when they contain material that in my submission is not accurate. The

7 witness has to be asked the questions in a step-by-step way. If he says

8 that Mr. Halilovic has got a chain of command, that's the evidence, but

9 it's got to be his evidence and not that coming from the Prosecutor in the

10 style of a question. And so I maintain my objection and I point out that

11 that's not what the witness said that's been contained in this preamble.

12 JUDGE LIU: Yes, I understand where the confusion is.

13 MR. RE: Well, I'll quote back what the witness said,"So as" --

14 this is at page 26. "So as corps commander I did have command from the

15 top down and as such I had the authority of command -- control and command

16 over these companies up until the point in time when they arrived at their

17 destination and reported to the Supreme Command group which was headed by

18 General Sefer Halilovic. After that the chain of command which functioned

19 which was established in the course of the implementation of the

20 operation, Neretva 93 operation, this chain of command and command -- this

21 chain of command had command and control over them." Unquote. Now, if

22 that doesn't mean subordination, we shouldn't all be in this courtroom.

23 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, that's the Prosecutor's case. We

24 don't think we should be in this courtroom. But that's their case. But

25 it's no good coming from Mr. Re. It's got to come from the witness.

Page 31

1 MR. RE: Is this a dispute over terminology, command and control

2 and subordination?

3 JUDGE LIU: Well, well, well. I believe the witness answered this

4 question, which is quite understandable. However, the Defence have some

5 difficulties with this, and Mr. Re, would you please ask a very direct

6 question to this witness, whether the troops is under the command of

7 Mr. Halilovic when they came to that place? Yes.

8 MR. RE:

9 Q. You heard the question, General. Was it your understanding -- or

10 what was your understanding of whether or not those troops were under

11 General Halilovic's control or command and control when they were to

12 report to Bradina or the general command -- or the Supreme Command in

13 Jablanica?

14 A. In accordance to previous documents, and in particular the order

15 from General Sefer Halilovic which I received, I sent the units to

16 Jablanica according to that order. They reported at Jablanica to the

17 team, namely the team headed by General Sefer Halilovic, who was Chief of

18 Staff of the Supreme Command.

19 The Chief of Staff is not one to command one or two companies.

20 Such a person at such a high post does not directly command soldiers. The

21 corps commander either does not directly command the soldiers or the

22 commander of the division, operational group or a brigade, because these

23 are high functions. That is why General Sefer Halilovic wrote this order

24 which I didn't know about during the war. I wasn't -- it wasn't of

25 interest to me. As corps commander I was only interested in the order

Page 32

1 that I received. I sent units out in accordance with that order, in order

2 to implement a specific task. I'm not interested in what kind of a task

3 it is because I'm a corps commander. I have my own duties, many other

4 duties. 75.000 soldiers, and I should not be dealing with 200 soldiers.

5 That is why General Halilovic wrote this order, whereby units from the 1st

6 Corps that arrived were resubordinated to the Zulfikar detachment or

7 brigade. So that he would not be directly in command of two companies

8 because there is no military logic to this, this is not proper, and it

9 cannot be done that way. What the further chain of command was, and how

10 it was established, and what it was as a whole during the course of the

11 implementation of the Neretva-93 operation, is very difficult for me to

12 say. I was not kept abreast of things. I found out and learned many

13 things after the war only, when I was looking at numerous documents. This

14 is a question that requires a much broader answer, and perhaps an expert

15 approach to this answer.

16 Q. Who was the general resubordinating?

17 A. This order, which was drafted by General Sefer Halilovic, at the

18 bottom of the document, if you can look, you can see that this order was

19 not given to the 1st Corps command or to myself.

20 Q. My question is: Who was he resubordinating the 1st Corps units

21 to -- from?

22 MR. MORRISSEY: Again I'm got an objection to this. If

23 Your Honours have regard to this particular document, you will see that

24 it's a document with a variety of purported resubordinations on it and at

25 the bottom of it, it says in the English version that it's from Sefer

Page 33

1 Halilovic. It's dated the 6th of September in Jablanica. You'll notice

2 that it's not signed by Sefer Halilovic. You'll also remember the

3 evidence of Sefko Hodzic, the journalist who the Prosecution called

4 effectively to say where Mr. Halilovic was at all times. Now, this

5 document was not written by Halilovic and it can't be the Prosecution case

6 that it was. Because they are saying he went with Hodzic and was away

7 from Jablanica on the 6th. This document coming from the 6th has got the

8 name of Halilovic there but no signature.

9 For this witness to be asked to comment on it, as he says himself

10 he hasn't seen it before, in this way, he's doing a bit of an unfairness

11 to the witness, frankly, and in my submission it's doing an unfairness to

12 the Defence without it being at least clarified on what basis he's looking

13 at it. The witness at the moment appears to be trading this witness as a

14 genuine good-faith document which it may be or may not be. We don't

15 know. But at the moment it's just a document that's not signed by Sefer

16 Halilovic and comes from Jablanica where you and the Prosecution know he

17 wasn't.

18 And as a result of that, Your Honours, when my learned friend puts

19 as part of his question who was Sefer Halilovic resubordinating to, that

20 assumes that it was Sefer Halilovic doing the resubordinating rather than

21 some other person in Jablanica. And for those reasons, I object to that

22 question being phrased as it was.

23 And generally speaking I want to make this observation about the

24 current questions: I don't object to Mr. Karavelic being given the chance

25 to offer informed commentary on particular documents, but to mix it up

Page 34

1 with the narrative evidence is dangerous. It's after 11 years it's

2 dangerous for a witness to be put in the position of saying, firstly what

3 he remembers, and then secondly what his expert comment is. Now I don't

4 object to the narrative. The Prosecution is fully entitled to get

5 everything he remembers and everything he did and they can show him as

6 many documents as are useful to achieve that end. I don't object.

7 Secondly I don't object to the Prosecutor showing him documents for

8 commentary if it's appropriate for him to comment. But it has to be clear

9 what the dividing line is, otherwise whether we come later on, to consider

10 what all this means, when we look at the transcript, it's going to be a

11 mixture, and it's going to be very hard to untangle it, and it will be

12 hard to see what use can be made of it. Of course, on the Sanction device

13 you might get a nice, cutout bit, but to follow the whole meaning of the

14 evidence is difficult. And frankly I'm finding it ditch myself now and

15 that may just be my intellectual shortcomings but in my submission it's

16 not appropriate to have mixture of narrative and expert evidence. It's

17 apt to confuse, and it's put the witness now of dealing with this

18 particular document, as if it's bona fides, whereas it's not proved.

19 So that's the long speech. I understand that and I apologise for

20 it. There is an objection to the specific but there will be other

21 objection of this nature. So now what the people know what the Defence

22 position is, it can be responded to.

23 JUDGE LIU: At this stage I have to remind you that this document

24 has already been admitted into the evidence and your objections that we

25 should bear in mind in the future stage. And as for the organisation of

Page 35

1 the direct examination, I believe that is entirely in the hands of the

2 Prosecution. Maybe they should reorganise their questions and way of

3 presenting their evidence at a later stage. My suggestion is that we have

4 a short break and during which both parties will think it over, about how

5 to deal with this witness.

6 And we'll resume at quarter past 11.00.

7 --- Recess taken at 10.46 a.m.

8 --- On resuming at 11.16 a.m.

9 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Re?

10 MR. RE: Yes, thank you, Your Honour. I just want to raise

11 something very briefly in the absence of the witness. I just wish to

12 place on the record - I didn't do it before because the witness was here -

13 the Prosecution's objection to the type of objection my learned colleague

14 Mr. Morrissey made before the break in which he discussed at some length

15 the evidence of other witnesses and the authenticity or otherwise of a

16 document which is already in evidence. In our submission it's not a

17 proper thing to do in front of a witness and if Mr. Morrissey wishes to do

18 it again the witness should be asked to leave the room so we can discuss

19 this and his evidence not be contaminated. I raise this now in the hope

20 that it doesn't recur.

21 JUDGE LIU: Well, yes, of course, as a rule that we should do

22 that. But, however, I believe that the objections from Defence has some

23 merit. So if the parties would like to have the witness absent, I believe

24 that both parties could raise that issue to the attention of this Bench.

25 Yes.

Page 36

1 And another matter, well, it's a housekeeping matter, that is, we

2 received a motion for the judicial notice on March the 1st, 2005, from the

3 Defence, and during this period, I remind the Prosecution for three times

4 to discuss with the Defence that very issue. This is a Pre-Trial matter

5 and we have to deal with it now, and we have some questions concerning of

6 the submissions from the Defence. The Defence claims that there is some

7 objections to that document, but we want to hear the parties on that

8 issue. Especially from the Prosecution, on their views, so that we could

9 make our decision as early as possible. So maybe this afternoon, in the

10 afternoon session, which will start from 3.30, I believe, we'll spend

11 about a few minutes to hear the Prosecution on their views on that motion

12 concerning with the judicial notice. I hope the parties will be prepared

13 for that. Yes?

14 MR. METTRAUX: We definitely would, Your Honour.

15 JUDGE LIU: Yes, but mainly we would like to hear from the

16 Prosecution and all your positions are there already for two months, I

17 believe. Yes.

18 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, thanks. We will be ready this

19 afternoon for such limited help as we can give.

20 Your Honours could I just respond briefly to what my learned

21 friend said? Your Honours, I won't say much about it. Of course, if the

22 Prosecutors want the witness to go out of the room when objections are

23 taken, they can make that application. It has to be borne in mind,

24 though, that there is a couple of things that the Defence has to deal with

25 that the Prosecution doesn't. That is that we don't proof these witnesses

Page 37

1 and generally speaking, the Prosecutor proofs them for many days.

2 Now, in -- in the case of this particular witness, as a result of

3 some matters that we were concerned about, we did speak to the witness,

4 and my objections here have been -- I mean if my learned friend wants to

5 open this up we will open it up entirely what our concerns about proofing

6 and so on are but I suspect it's probably best to leave it unless the

7 parties can't behave to each other with civilisation. But I can indicate

8 this: When my learned friend puts particular propositions to a witness,

9 I've got to respond, I've got to explain what my position is. It's no use

10 to simply say "I object." The next question will be from Your Honours,

11 well, "Why?" And then I'll explain why. So I don't think I have to

12 respond to some of the allegations made, but I just make it clear that

13 when I -- when I make an objection like that, when it's lengthy, it's

14 because of what's happened and, frankly, if we have to go further with

15 this I'll say -- we've got very grave concerns about these proofing

16 sessions and if we have to air them I'll air them. It's up to the

17 Prosecutor whether the want to take that further or not. I don't choose

18 to air them now. I think it's inappropriate to do so. Your Honour has

19 indicated what you have to say. But what I want to put on record is we've

20 got plenty more to say on this topic if we are called on to do so. And

21 that's all I've got to say at the moment.

22 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Your position is registered in

23 the transcript.

24 Yes.

25 MR. RE: Again Mr. Morrissey makes allegations against the

Page 38

1 Prosecution. Again he makes allegations which are in an oblique sort of

2 way, an innuendo that there is something going on untoward in proofing

3 sessions that he doesn't want to really raise but will only do if he has

4 to. Well, that's not good enough. We are sick to death of these

5 allegations being made against the Prosecution without a shred of evidence

6 to back them up. He makes them against Mr. Mikhailov every day, and now

7 he turns against us personally. This has to stop unless he has something

8 he can put before the Trial Chamber.

9 JUDGE LIU: Yes, of course, but if we engage into this kind of

10 argument, we will spend hours or days on those issues. We understand that

11 the procedure of there Tribunal is a combination of the common law and the

12 civil law legal systems, so it's not a perfect one. There are a lot of

13 problems that we have to have solved. But the main purpose for this

14 trial, especially for this week, is that this Bench is doing its utmost,

15 we sit for extra hours, to finish this witness within this week. I hope

16 the parties should bear that in mind and we don't want to leave this

17 witness half done for this week, because next week we will have two week

18 and a half break.

19 Yes, having said that, could we have the witness, please?

20 [The witness entered court]

21 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Re, please continue.

22 MR. RE:

23 Q. Still on the document P122, the order of the 6th of September

24 1993, with Mr. Halilovic's name at the bottom of it, my question is still

25 regarding what you've described as the resubordination, and I'm asking you

Page 39

1 to comment, as a general who retired, as a brigadier general or a major

2 general, in the Bosnian army last year -- military service and a person

3 who has given expert testimony over several weeks in other proceedings

4 before this Tribunal, as well as based upon your knowledge of your troops

5 going to Herzegovina, I'm asking you to comment in -- as to the meaning

6 you see in paragraph 1 of that order, in terms of the resubordination.

7 What does it mean?

8 A. The concept of resubordination in the Army of the Republic of

9 Bosnia and Herzegovina and before that in the Yugoslav People's Army, and

10 I believe in virtually any army in the world, is understood to mean the

11 following. When a unit is resubordinated from one unit to another unit,

12 in connection with a specific task, the moment the unit leaves and joins

13 the other unit, and is placed under the control of that other unit, from

14 that time, from that moment, it is to execute all the duties and

15 obligations issued it by the new commander. Up to the time the

16 resubordination ceases as such, i.e., until the return of that unit back

17 to its parent unit.

18 I should like to remark that the -- in the process of

19 resubordination, the unit of that leaves and goes to this other unit, and

20 is resubordinated to the other unit and the other commander. This is not

21 to say that it is actually extracted from the organic establishment of its

22 previous unit. That is precisely why the term "resubordination" is used.

23 Resubordination as a rule is used for a specific, shorter period of time,

24 a couple of days, 15 days, a month, it may be longer, for several months,

25 but this is only very seldom. Precisely because it is very difficult to

Page 40

1 work in this way over a longer period of time, namely when you have a unit

2 from elsewhere under your command. If such a unit is resubordinated to

3 this other unit, and this other commander. And these are the most

4 frequent reasons why this is resorted to only for shorter periods of time.

5 Q. Looking at that document, what was happening, or what was supposed

6 to happen to the units from the 1st Corps? Those were the units that were

7 under your command previously.

8 A. Well, you say that they were under my command previously. You

9 could also say previously under the command or subordinated to Rasim Delic

10 because that is absolutely the same thing. Because one has to properly

11 grasp the chain of command in the army. They are not directly

12 subordinated to me, but they are within my chain of command. And they are

13 also in the chain of command starting from the top, starting from Rasim

14 Delic or starting from the Supreme Command down. Item one of this order

15 means that the Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command, then, resubordinated

16 1st Corps units in the -- to the effect of the meaning that I just

17 explained before, to a special unit.

18 Q. How was he able to do that?

19 A. He has a right to do that.

20 Q. Looking at that order, who is the special unit subordinated to,

21 that is the Zulfikar unit?

22 A. I do not know to whom it is resubordinated. According to some of

23 my sources, and having read some documents, up to that time, that unit had

24 been an independent unit at the level of our corps, which directly

25 reported to the Supreme Command Staff, and the -- judging by this

Page 41

1 document, according to this document, it was not resubordinated to anyone,

2 but as I said, according to some documents which I have read, that unit,

3 the special Zulfikar detachment, was supposed to become part of the

4 organic establishment of the 4th Corps, if I remember correctly. Now,

5 whether that actually took place or not, I cannot say.

6 MR. RE: If Your Honour could just excuse me for one moment?

7 Thanks.

8 Q. Does this document indicate that the Chief of Staff, whose name is

9 on the document, was able to issue orders to the Zulfikar Reconnaissance

10 Sabotage Brigade?

11 A. The special detachment, the Zulfikar, directly reported to and was

12 directly subordinated to the commander of the Supreme Command Staff, just

13 like I myself was as the commander of the 1st Corps. It was absolutely at

14 the same level. How much was Sefer Halilovic able to command that

15 detachment, that depended on how much powers General Delic gave him.

16 Q. Can you comment from that order as to how much powers

17 General Delic had given General Halilovic?

18 A. I'd rather not comment on that, because in this entire situation,

19 I was subordinated to both of them, and as subordinated, I did not have

20 the right, one in that position actually has no right to think about

21 the -- or comment the actions of his superiors, but if this is a document

22 that was signed by General Sefer Halilovic, and sent it to the special

23 Zulfikar detachment, the document itself says everything.

24 Q. Meaning what?

25 A. Well, probably that Rasim Delic had actually invested him with the

Page 42

1 right, given him the right to do that.

2 Q. What is the nature of this particular order, in military terms?

3 A. Well, the word "order" in itself is self explanatory, I believe.

4 An order which has the character of the grouping or forming of units, or,

5 rather, the better term to use is the grouping of units for a forthcoming

6 specific mission.

7 Q. Who is bound by that order?

8 A. This order is binding upon -- but first let me see to whom it is

9 submitted, at the bottom of the page. It is binding first of all on the

10 commander of the Zulfikar Brigade. I believe that its previous

11 designation was "special detachment," but at that time it was renamed the

12 Zulfikar Reconnaissance Brigade. So he was to receive these units that

13 were being resubordinated to him, and place them under his control. Then,

14 it was also binding on the commander of the 6th Corps, because some of

15 these units were probably also from the organic composition of the 6th

16 Corps as well as of the 4th Corps. Now, whether there were some units

17 from the 4th Corps or not, or whether some combat activities were to take

18 place in the zone of responsibility of the 4th Corps is something which I

19 cannot explicitly infer, conclude, from the part of it which refers to the

20 4th Corps. Then it was also submitted to the archives and the Dreznica

21 Battalion from the 47th Mountain Brigade.

22 And naturally, it was also binding upon the commanders of these

23 units from the 1st Corps that had come to the Neretva River valley.

24 MR. RE: All right. Can the witness please be shown the next

25 document, which is 65 ter 171, ERN 03634076?

Page 43

1 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI 385.

2 MR. RE:

3 Q. There is a document of the 6th of September 1993, an order

4 addressed to the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion Command which bears

5 your name and a signature. Is that a document which was drafted at your

6 direction, which you signed and issued?

7 A. Well, probably yes.

8 Q. We certainly appreciate you would have signed hundreds, thousands

9 of documents, over the course of your -- over the course of the war and

10 your duties as the 1st Corps commander. But just --

11 A. Many more, in fact.

12 Q. All right. You say "probably yes." Why do you say "probably

13 yes"?

14 A. On the basis of the fact that I see the stamp of the 1st Corps, I

15 believe that this is my signature, and if this document was extracted from

16 the archives of the Army of the Federation, as an official document, and

17 did not come from some other sources, what have you, is not a forged

18 document, then there is no reason for me to doubt the authenticity of the

19 document.

20 Q. Well, is there anything in it which causes you to doubt its

21 authenticity?

22 A. Well, there is nothing actually that I see in it that would induce

23 me to think that.

24 Q. The -- look at part 1 of the record which says "assignment." It

25 says "in cooperation with units of -- with the units of the 4th and 6th

Page 44

1 Corps, in that area, carry out offensive combat operations with the

2 purpose of liberating the Jablanica-Mostar communication, combat

3 activities in that area are carried out under the command of a group from

4 the SVK led by NSRBiH, armed forces military command." Unquote. I want

5 you to comment on that information.

6 A. Comment how? I can only read it. That's all I can do.

7 Q. Read it first and I want you to comment upon the accuracy of the

8 information in this order that you signed. From where did you get this

9 information, for example?

10 A. If I do not doubt the source of this document, that also means

11 that I also confirm the entire content of the document, as I said a while

12 ago.

13 Q. Let's move to number 3. It says, quote "Company carries out the

14 stated assignment not longer than seven days after the day of reporting to

15 the SVKIKM." That's the Supreme Command staff, forward command post in

16 Jablanica. Unquote. What was the -- what is meant by "seven days"? Why

17 have you put "seven days" in this document?

18 A. Probably based on an agreement with somebody that the units would

19 stay there for a period of seven days, to implement that task.

20 Q. Well, who was the agreement with?

21 A. With Sefer Halilovic, I assume, but I'm not sure. I don't

22 remember. Or with Rasim Delic. But I don't remember.

23 Q. Are you saying you had communication with either Sefer Halilovic

24 or Rasim Delic in which the period of seven days was agreed upon but you

25 now cannot remember which one you spoke to or communicated with?

Page 45

1 A. I was constantly in touch with General Delic and with Sefer

2 Halilovic.

3 Q. Which one was it more likely that you were in contact with in

4 relation to the seven days' period agreement?

5 A. It's difficult to say anything.

6 Q. Is that a memory-related issue?

7 A. Yes, exactly.

8 Q. It's addressed to the 2nd independent motorised battalion command

9 to the attention of the commander, that's Adnan Solakovic. Do you recall

10 discussing his assignment to liberate Jablanica-Mostar communication with

11 him?

12 A. I don't remember. It's possible, but I don't remember.

13 MR. RE: May that be received into evidence?

14 JUDGE LIU: Any objections?

15 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, yes, there is. We don't -- the

16 Defence doesn't necessarily accept the genuineness of this document here,

17 and we can put the arguments now if you like to or we can leave it to the

18 end. I'm not sure. We changed track on the practice we were using.

19 JUDGE LIU: Do you have any serious objections on that or do you

20 have any evidence pointing that it's --

21 MR. MORRISSEY: We just have the evidence of the witnesses who --

22 who indicate -- the base of the objection is this: Firstly, this witness

23 says quite clearly he doesn't remember the individual document. Well,

24 that's fine, that's not in itself enough to be an objection. But then you

25 have the evidence of other witnesses now - I'm not sure if this is going

Page 46

1 to occasion an objection here, but there is the basis of my objection now,

2 so I'm going to put it before the Court - of these people from --

3 MR. RE: There will be -- there will be if it's in front of this

4 witness. Your Honour asked me -- invited me to -- to interrupt if that

5 was going to happen.

6 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Maybe we could defer the decision of this

7 document to a later stage.

8 MR. MORRISSEY: We could, Your Honour. There is a matter I want

9 to raise, actually, about -- no, no, it's not appropriate to do it now.

10 We'll do it later, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Yes, we will proceed.

12 MR. RE:

13 Q. Thank you, Mr. Karavelic, let's go back to the document. Just

14 have a look at the signature which is on the document. Does that appear

15 to be your normal signature?

16 A. As corps commander, I also had a signature, what do you call it, a

17 sort of stamp facsimile signature, a stamp. So I think that I didn't sign

18 this by hand but used the stamp signature.

19 Q. There is also -- to the left of that there is a stamp which says

20 IK -- well, 1st Corps, with the Bosnian coat of arms there. Is that the

21 1st Corps stamp?

22 A. That was the 1st Corps stamp, but there were two or three stamps,

23 at least two. There should be the number 1 here, if that was my stamp.

24 Number 2 if it was the stamp that was used at the forward command post of

25 the corps. I don't see the number 1 here but I don't necessarily have to

Page 47

1 be right about that. I'm not sure, but I think that that is the stamp.

2 Q. We can -- can the stamp area please be enlarged for the witness?

3 We've blown it up pretty large now to cover the full screen. Does that

4 assist you?

5 A. The same answer. I think that that is the stamp. I know that

6 there was the stamp also bearing the number 2. I don't know if that means

7 that this main stamp had to bear the number 1, too. I'm not sure. This

8 was because of the forward command post. When I as corps commander set up

9 a command post, a forward command post, it had to have its own stamp and

10 that stamp would bear the number 2. This stamp, however, would not leave

11 the main corps command post.

12 Q. Now, this --

13 A. I don't have any doubts about that, but I don't know really.

14 Q. At the top of the document, there is a handwritten 333, and a 402.

15 402 is crossed out and there is a circled one in the top right-hand

16 corner. Can you comment on what those numbers mean?

17 A. It doesn't mean anything to me.

18 Q. There is also some handwriting, I think you'll find it on the back

19 of the document, which means you'll have to go to the second page. Can

20 you just read out what that says? Can you possibly blow it up?

21 A. If I read it correctly, it states here, "Sarajlic, Asmir, escort

22 of Nihad, Bojadzic; Tahirovic, Mirsad, private."

23 Q. Who are those people?

24 A. Of these three names, only one is known to me, Nihad Bojadzic,

25 that's the only one I know. I don't know who the other two people are.

Page 48

1 Q. Who is Nihad Bojadzic?

2 A. One of the officers who was -- I don't know at which post in the

3 Zulfikar Brigade. I don't know whether he was in the staff of that

4 brigade or the deputy commander of the Zulfikar Brigade. For a while, in

5 1993, while I was at Igman, he was in that unit.

6 Q. Do you know whose handwriting that is?

7 A. I don't know.

8 Q. There is also some numbers over written above that handwriting.

9 0363-4076 A, then underneath that it appears to say 13B or BB, underlined.

10 Can you comment on what they mean?

11 A. No. I really cannot. It doesn't signify anything to me.

12 MR. MORRISSEY: It might be the Prosecution numbers, Your Honour.

13 JUDGE LIU: That may be.

14 MR. RE: Oh, yes, sorry.

15 JUDGE LIU: Do you have objections to this document?

16 Mr. Morrissey.

17 MR. MORRISSEY: Well, we do. I think I've already. This is still

18 part of the first document, I think, of the original document. In other

19 words, the order that we are critical of that we want to make a -- make

20 a -- or raise issues about later, this writing seems to be attached to the

21 second page to it, so it's going to be part of the objection, actually

22 speaking, that when we come to it that -- well, I don't want to raise it

23 now but yes that second page is just as much criticised as the first.

24 JUDGE LIU: Led wait to the later stage.

25 MR. RE: That was -- the ERN that was -- my mistake was that

Page 49

1 the"A" -- "A" actually means -- I think it means -- it's written on the

2 reverse side of the page.

3 Q. All right. Can we please move to 65 ter number 49, which is

4 0219-6085?

5 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI 386.

6 MR. RE:

7 Q. It's a document dated the 7th of September 1993, addressed to the

8 1st Corps Command under the hand of Adnan Solakovic, with a signature

9 coming from the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion. Now, have you seen

10 this document before coming to The Hague?

11 A. I didn't see it during the war. I'm not sure whether I saw it

12 before I arrived at The Hague or whether it was once I arrived at The

13 Hague.

14 Q. Is the information contained there, that is about the company of

15 125 soldiers being sent to Jablanica at 1900 hours to execute the required

16 tasks on the 6th of September 1993, went to the sector under the command

17 of the Chief of Staff, is that information accurate, to the best of your

18 knowledge?

19 A. It's difficult for me to say anything other than: If the document

20 is authentic, then it's true, whatever it says in the document. This is a

21 very small thing, so I cannot really remember anything in particular in

22 connection with that.

23 Q. All right. It's described as a daily operations report. Is that

24 something you would have -- you would have seen in the normal course of

25 your business as the corps commander?

Page 50

1 A. I said yesterday that the 1st Corps, amongst other things, had

2 about 40 units linked with it. Each of those units had to -- its duty was

3 every day, in the evening, at 1800 hours or 2000 hours, to send such a

4 daily operative report to the 1st Corps command. All these reports were

5 summarised at the operations centre, and they would make an overview for

6 the corps commander. In the evening, when all the reports had arrived,

7 the most important things would then be reported to the corps commander by

8 the Chief of Staff. So the corps commander would not actually see most of

9 these reports. I could even say 99 per cent of the reports, with his own

10 eyes.

11 Q. Does this document appear to you, from your knowledge of the means

12 of communication and the stationary used by the 2nd Independent Motorised

13 Battalion and the stamp and the signature and so on, does it appear to you

14 to be a genuine document?

15 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, I object to that.

16 MR. RE: Well, is there an objection to the document? If there is

17 not an objection to the document I'll tender it. But it will take me a

18 long time, otherwise. There is a short way and a long way of tendering

19 these documents.

20 JUDGE LIU: Is there a reason for that question, I mean that

21 specific question?

22 MR. MORRISSEY: There is an objection to the document. There will

23 be an objection to the document. If my learned friend wishes to go

24 through any steps he wishes to, he can. We will object to the document,

25 that's true, but the objection wasn't about that. The objection was

Page 51

1 putting in leading information about this witness's knowledge of the

2 stationary of the 2nd Independent Battalion. He has to prove he had some

3 knowledge first and not assume it in the question. And that's the

4 objection. We just ask that he go step by step.

5 MR. RE: We are going to be here for a very long time if we do

6 this with every document.

7 MR. MORRISSEY: I should indicate this, we have asked for chain of

8 custody in relation to a number of documents. In any event I'm not

9 concerned by us being here for a long time. I just have to take objection

10 to the question. The Tribunal can rule on it. Either I succeed or fail

11 and then we continue.

12 JUDGE LIU: Let's deal with one thing after another. The first

13 thing is about the question itself. I don't believe that there is any

14 problem for the question to put to this witness. So the -- we could not

15 accept that objection from the Defence. You may proceed.

16 MR. RE:

17 Q. I'm asking you based upon your knowledge of communications within

18 the corps and your knowledge of the 2nd independent stationary, the

19 signature of Mr. Solakovic, the stamp on it and so on, whether it appears

20 to you to be a genuine document.

21 A. In principle, I have no particular objections, but I cannot verify

22 its authenticity. I don't know off by heart the number of the military

23 unit. It's impossible to know that. A pentium would have to memorise how

24 many units I had in the corps and what their numbers were. It's probably

25 correct, but if it isn't and I confirm it, then what would happen then? I

Page 52

1 cannot confirm it or deny it. And also whether this is the signature of

2 the battalion commander. As an example, it probably is. But what if it

3 isn't? If we are questioning that. As a witness, I would not really go

4 into that, if I don't have to.

5 Q. Is there anything on the face of the document to indicate whether

6 it was sent from the 2nd Independent Motorised Brigade and received by the

7 command of the 1st Corps?

8 A. At the bottom of the document, it says that it was sent to the 1st

9 Corps Command and that it was also archived in the operation centre of the

10 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion. This is most often the format used

11 in correspondence, but I cannot claim with 100 per cent certainty whether

12 it arrived at the command of the 1st Corps, whether a bomb fell and hit

13 the courier or something. There is no way that I can know something like

14 that. Excuse me, but in order to establish it, you would need to find the

15 register books of the operations centre and the 1st Corps Command. You

16 would need to find the record book of the operations centre of the 2nd

17 Independent Motorised Brigade to see who took the document, how it was

18 sent to the 1st Corps Command. You would need to find the signature of

19 that person, whether they sent it by Paket or took it personally. This is

20 something that you would find in the log books. It's just a mechanism.

21 That's how the service worked.

22 Q. I want you to tell the Trial Chamber about the departure of these

23 units for Herzegovina.

24 A. Could you please be more specific?

25 Q. You sent some orders, you said you sent orders to at least the 2nd

Page 53

1 Independent Battalion, the 9th and 10th Mountain Brigades, to Caco and

2 Celo to gather men to send to Herzegovina and to report to Bradina or

3 Jablanica. How did they go? What was the mechanism? Did you see them

4 off?

5 A. There is a lot in your question that needs to be clarified. I

6 sent the orders to the unit commands, or to the commanders. They, at

7 least I think, received clear instructions and clear tasks, based on those

8 orders. Namely, to prepare the unit, a certain number of men, and by the

9 time stated in the order send them to the destination, i.e. Jablanica. In

10 what manner, which transport means to use, which route, this was all

11 stated. In case of a delay or bad weather or something, perhaps that

12 would change but everything else was there, and the units did leave. The

13 reports did arrive at the 1st Corps Command once the units departed, and

14 one of such reports is probably this one from the 2nd Independent

15 Battalion.

16 When I issue an order, then it is up to the brigade commander, if

17 we are talking about a small unit, through his own chain of command, and

18 with his officers, to regulate and make sure that the unit reaches its

19 destination safely.

20 Q. You just said that the reports did arrive at the 1st Corps command

21 and one of such reports is probably this one from the 2nd Independent

22 Battalion. Just for clarity, that is the MFI 386, the order -- sorry, the

23 report of the 7th of September 1993 which is possibly still on the screen

24 in front of you. Is that correct? I'm just clarifying part of your last

25 answer. You said one of those reports. I'm just trying to tie it to a

Page 54

1 document. Are you referring to the one on the screen in front of you?

2 A. Yes, probably, because that fits in; that's probably the document.

3 But I did not see it with my own eyes at the time, and so on and so forth.

4 Q. What was the normal process when a commander sent troops off to

5 participate in combat? What did you personally do? I'm specifically

6 asking you whether you personally -- was it a practice to personally

7 address the troops?

8 A. The duty of all in the chain of command, including even the

9 Supreme Command, or members of the Supreme Command, and not to mention all

10 the other lower-ranking staff in the chain of command, is usually to

11 appear in front of the whole unit, or a part of the unit, depending on the

12 situation, before more serious and more important combat assignments were

13 begun.

14 Q. Did you appear in front of the soldiers who were going to

15 Jablanica? Did you speak to them?

16 A. Of all the soldiers and all the units that went to Jablanica, I

17 think that I addressed the 1st unit that was sent from the 9th Motorised

18 Brigade.

19 Q. When was that?

20 A. I cannot give you the exact date. It was probably the day they

21 left or the day before.

22 Q. Where were you? Where did you address them?

23 A. I think that they were in front of the brigade command.

24 Q. Was Celo there?

25 A. It's hard to say who was there. It's possible but I'm not sure.

Page 55

1 Q. What Mr. Colonel Imsirevic, do you remember whether he was there?

2 A. The same reply. I would give the same reply as I did on -- about

3 the one concerning Ramiz Delalic, Celo.

4 Q. What did you say to the troops?

5 A. Well, I cannot repeat it word for word. It's hard, so much time

6 later. But the gist of it was, and it was a very brief address, of

7 perhaps five or six minutes, that it was a very serious assignment and in

8 the way that they carried out all regular combat assignments in the 1st

9 Corps they should, in the same way, properly and consciously implement

10 this provisional combat assignment from -- away from the 1st Corps. That

11 was the gist of it. It was just a brief address, the same as when other

12 units or any other unit is sent to carry out any other combat assignment.

13 Q. Did you tell them where they were going?

14 A. I told them everything which is written in the order, which was in

15 writing, I told them orally.

16 Q. You're referring to Mr. Halilovic's order of the 2nd of September?

17 Which is Exhibit P38 -- I'm sorry.

18 A. Yes, precisely, that order and my own order that I had sent to the

19 motorised brigade.

20 Q. For the record, I meant P12 -- I'm sorry, 161.

21 Did you tell them that they were going to be subordinated to the

22 Zuka unit?

23 A. No. I didn't even know that at the time. There was not a

24 theoretical chance. I didn't know at the time that they would be

25 subordinated to Zulfikar's unit.

Page 56

1 Q. Who did you tell them they were to be subordinated to when they

2 got there, if you did?

3 MR. MORRISSEY: I object to that. He didn't say.

4 MR. RE:

5 Q. If you did?


7 MR. MORRISSEY: The objection is that he hasn't said he told them

8 they would be subordinated to anyone.

9 MR. RE: I'll just withdraw the question. I'll re-ask it.

10 Q. Did you tell them that they were to be subordinated to anyone, and

11 if so, to whom?

12 A. This is not the kind of conversation that a corps commander has

13 with the men. The corps commander is also a very high post. And in such

14 addresses, he addresses nice words to the men, in order to motivate them.

15 And as regards this particular issue that you are referring to, this is

16 something that the corps commander sees to through his chain of command.

17 This is something that we should know, because this is a matter of

18 principle, when it comes to the functioning of the military system.

19 Of course, my written order contained all these details and my

20 written order actually provides the answer to your question.

21 Q. I want to move to -- I withdraw that.

22 JUDGE LIU: Well, maybe it's time for us to take a break.

23 MR. RE: Really? Of course, of course, I'm sorry, of course.

24 JUDGE LIU: We'll resume at quarter to one.

25 --- Recess taken at 12.18 p.m.

Page 57

1 --- On resuming at 12.45 p.m.

2 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Re.

3 MR. RE:

4 Q. You told us earlier that you sent orders to the brigades -- I'm

5 sorry, the units, in accordance with Mr. Halilovic's order which was P161

6 of 2nd of September, and we've gone through P383, which was your order of

7 the 4th of September to Celo personally. Did Caco and Celo go to

8 Herzegovina?

9 A. I had information that they had indeed been there, down there.

10 Whether they left at that time, I don't know.

11 Q. What about Adnan Solakovic? Did you approve of his going to

12 Herzegovina?

13 A. I do not remember. I may have. It is possible. I do not

14 remember.

15 Q. Did he go to Herzegovina?

16 A. I also think that he was there, had been there. When he went

17 there, I don't know.

18 Q. To clarify something from your evidence this morning, was he a

19 person who required your permission to leave Sarajevo and go to

20 Herzegovina, by virtue of his position?

21 A. It was customary for him and for the commander of the 9 Mountain

22 Brigade, because they reported directly to me, yes. However, it was not

23 always something which was strictly binding, which strictly had to be the

24 case.

25 Q. I think your evidence earlier was that someone in Caco's position,

Page 58

1 as the head of a brigade, required your permission to leave Sarajevo. Did

2 you give him permission to go to Herzegovina with parts of the 10th

3 motorised -- sorry, Mountain Brigade?

4 A. I do not recall him asking for any permission. I do not remember

5 that he asked me anything of the kind, and I never issued him any orders

6 to that effect.

7 Q. In military terms, what was the situation, if he left Sarajevo

8 without your permission?

9 A. Nothing. What would it be?

10 Q. Well, if your permission was required and he left without

11 obtaining your permission, what would that mean in military terms?

12 A. That would be a breach of discipline.

13 MR. RE: Could the witness please be a shown document which is

14 number 54 on our 65 ter list, 02196034?

15 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI 387.

16 MR. RE:

17 Q. There is a daily operative report from the 2nd Independent

18 Motorised Brigade, addressed to the 1st Corps Command and the operations

19 centre of the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion, dated the 9th of

20 September 1993. Do you recall seeing this document in 1993?

21 A. The answer is the same as in reference to the previous document.

22 MR. RE: Could I obtain an indication from the Defence if they are

23 objecting to this document at the moment, just to see how far I have to go

24 with it.

25 MR. MORRISSEY: Well, Your Honours, my friend can obtain that

Page 59

1 indication. The fact is, we do object to it, and I can indicate one of

2 the bases on which we object and that is that when Mr. Okovic was here,

3 who is the man who is mentioned, they didn't show it to him. And trying

4 to show it to this witness in my submission is not appropriate or proper.

5 There are all sorts of ways I could describe it, but it's -- it really a

6 matter of concern that when the witness, the person who actually knows

7 about it is called and they don't ask him, to then try to slip it in

8 through this witness, in my submission, is not appropriate and I object to

9 its tender. I object to its use, frankly, altogether because whether the

10 Defence is effectively -- all right. I've put it on the table. I won't

11 advance argument now. I'll just indicate that we object.

12 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.

13 MR. RE: Look, I mean, I don't want to get into a slinging match

14 about, quote, "trying to slip it under the -- slip it through this

15 witness," unquote. If it wasn't put to Mr. Okovic, I don't know, I didn't

16 take the witness. I'm not in a position to comment on that. But I'm

17 entitled to show the witness a document which appears in the normal course

18 of it to be one addressed to his corps command. I might be able to

19 address the Court later on why it wasn't shown to Mr. Okovic. Maybe we

20 just forgot to. I don't know.

21 JUDGE LIU: Well, I believe that using of this document is allowed

22 and the objections from the Defence is partially denied. But as for

23 whether we admit it into the evidence or not, I believe that we could only

24 make the ruling after some questions put to this witness by the

25 Prosecution.

Page 60

1 Mr. Re, you may proceed.

2 MR. RE: All right.

3 Q. Mr. Karavelic -- excuse me.

4 All right. You answered earlier that -- I think your answer --

5 the earlier answer means that you don't recall seeing this in 1993; is

6 that correct?

7 A. Everything that I had -- that I said sorry in connection with the

8 previous document also applies to this one.

9 Q. What can you say about looking at the document, what sort of

10 document it is, and whether it appears to you to be a genuine document

11 issued from the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion?

12 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, I'll put it on record again. Again

13 I object to this. It seems to be an attempt to authenticate the document

14 and give the document some sort of weight when he's given his clear

15 indication as to whether he's ever seen it before. So it can't be done.

16 Your Honours, I don't object, and I've made this clear in the past, that

17 the witness can be asked about things he knows about. If he knows about

18 the information here, that could assist the Tribunal. But if he doesn't

19 know about, it won't. And I don't object to questions like that. But an

20 attempt to make the document look real when effectively the Prosecution

21 aren't proving that it's real is not permissible, and that's my objection.

22 JUDGE LIU: Yes, I believe there witness has already said that he

23 did not see this document in 1993. It's very difficult for this witness

24 to say it's a genuine document or not.

25 MR. RE: In -- all right. As the corps commander, he must be

Page 61

1 entitled to comment upon whether a document -- whether a document which is

2 issued or -- sorry, which is issued from subordinate unit within his

3 command, which is addressed to his corps command, bears the indicia of

4 authenticity based upon his experience as the corps commander and seeing

5 documents of this type. I mean -- I mean, that's as far as I can take it.

6 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Well, it seems to me that you are going to ask

7 this witness to make a conclusion on this document, but I believe that

8 you're entitled to ask the general question. For instance, whether this

9 document is within the format of the normal orders within his commander,

10 and whether this witness is familiar with whatever is said in this

11 document, et cetera.

12 MR. RE: May it please Your Honours.

13 Q. General, this document, does it appear to -- well, is it within

14 the format of normal communications within the 1st Corps in 1993?

15 A. There exist a multitude of different types of documents. It goes

16 without saying that this document is one of the documents that can be

17 categorised as falling under one of these many forms of documents. There

18 had been similar documents, that much I can say.

19 Q. Does it appear to be on 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion

20 letterhead?

21 A. There is no person that could confirm that or say anything

22 substantiated in connection with that question.

23 Q. I don't understand what you mean by that.

24 A. Well, as far as I could understand your question, you're asking me

25 about the type of paper and whether the document was authentic in terms of

Page 62

1 the manner of writing and the type of paper and the document as shown to

2 me on the monitor. So if I can say this, it is not an appropriate

3 question to me. In order for me to be able to reply to such a question I

4 would have to have the original document in my hand.

5 Q. Unfortunately we don't have the original here but I can show you a

6 paper copy, if that might assist you. If it is easier to read it, I can

7 certainly show you -- show it to you on a piece of paper. Would that

8 help?

9 A. I doubt it. I doubt that that would be of any significant help in

10 order for me to be more clear or more precise in my response.

11 Q. Look, if you look at the document.

12 MR. RE: Could you possibly blow up the logos in the top left-hand

13 corner, please? To the left, please. Thank you.

14 Q. There are two -- two logos there, one is the army and the other

15 one, to the left, is that the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion's logo?

16 A. I have to say one thing, which is true. I have seen this only

17 very seldom, and I'm not quite clear as to what this particular logo is.

18 It is stated on the document itself, first of all, under tool, on the top

19 is 2nd, 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion and then the 1st Corps of the

20 Army of B and H. This is totally contrary to the rules of drafting

21 documents. This is not the way this is done. So my conclusion is that

22 this was done by an incompetent officer. Now, what this logo on the left

23 means, stands for, is something that I cannot say anything about. It

24 doesn't ring any bells, as far as I'm concerned. But it is on the

25 document. That I can see, of course.

Page 63

1 This is very rare. This is perhaps a unique example that you

2 have, this order of units on the letterhead. I mean, of a thousand

3 documents, perhaps you will find one or none that look like that. I

4 guarantee you that. Of course, you can gain access to the archives of the

5 1st Corps and its command in the federal archives and you can be satisfied

6 of that for yourself.

7 Q. What about the army logo to the right of that? Is that the normal

8 army logo?

9 A. The logo to the right is a symbol which was quite customary and

10 was used.

11 Q. What about the stamp at the bottom?

12 A. All the stamps -- or, rather, the army had two types of stamp.

13 The first type of stamp was like this, with a coat of arms of Bosnia and

14 Herzegovina inscribed in it, but also with the full designation of the

15 unit in question. That was one kind of stamp. And this stamp that you

16 see now, that is a second, a different, type of stamp. The stamp is of

17 the same size. Inscribed in it is the coat of arms of Bosnia and

18 Herzegovina, but it only designates the unit and the number of the unit,

19 and the commander actually assigns numbers to all units by a special

20 directive. And this is something that is hard for one to know by heart.

21 It is in fact impossible. So probably this number, which is there, is the

22 secret number, the secret designation, on the stamp of the 2nd Independent

23 Battalion, but this is only a supposition on my part. That is, if I do

24 not doubt the document. And that of course doesn't have to be the case,

25 as far as the doubting of it is concerned, I mean.

Page 64

1 Q. All right. The numbers, are they 5438?

2 A. Yes. I think so. I guess it is 5438. I cannot be sure.

3 Q. You're saying that you can't remember now but that may have been

4 the designation of the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion?

5 A. Each unit had a numerical designation of this kind. Absolutely

6 each and every unit had to have such a numerical designation.

7 Q. All right. And Mr. Sakib Okovic, do you know who he was?

8 A. Yes, I do.

9 Q. Who was he?

10 A. He was an officer in the command of the 2nd Independent Motorised

11 Battalion.

12 Q. Are you familiar with his signature?

13 A. No, I'm not.

14 Q. You said that the --

15 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honour, could I just raise a matter there.

16 Perhaps I should have objected to that question a bit quicker. The answer

17 didn't -- or, the answer happened in any event, but there was somebody

18 here who might have answered the question as to the signature. And there

19 is a question in any event as to whether this particular Okovic here is

20 the same person who came. But the Okovic who came is the person who

21 was -- who we know played a role down in Herzegovina, so --

22 JUDGE LIU: I agree with you.

23 MR. MORRISSEY: All right.

24 MR. RE: I don't understand. Is Mr. Morrissey saying that it's a

25 different Mr. Okovic? I'm not sure what he's saying.

Page 65

1 JUDGE LIU: Actually, the witness has answered that question

2 already, so -- well, I believe that Mr. Morrissey just wants to register

3 his objections in the transcript on that particular matter. On that

4 issue, I believe that the author himself is the best person to recognise

5 his own signature. On this part, I agree with Mr. Morrissey.

6 MR. RE: I think the witness -- I think it was a different

7 witness. I think it was that a Mr. Zakija Okovic [phoen], not a Mr. Sakib

8 Okovic. I think there is two. There may be two different people. I'll

9 have to check this.

10 JUDGE LIU: Yes. But shall we proceed.

11 MR. RE: The original objection was that Mr. Okovic had actually

12 testified here, and he was the guy who should be authenticating. That was

13 the original objection. I think we might be on different levels here.

14 That's why I was confused before.

15 JUDGE LIU: You may proceed.

16 MR. RE: Thank you. All right.

17 Q. You said earlier that -- I'm just trying to find the passage it

18 was some minutes ago, you mentioned the competence it must have been

19 drafted by someone who was incompetent because the way the logos were

20 there or something to that effect. Are you making a comment on

21 Mr. Okovic's competence, by that answer?

22 A. Whoever is the author of the signature, whoever is the signatory,

23 yes, that is my opinion.

24 Q. All right. What about the -- I want to ask you about the

25 information in the document. Are you familiar with the information in the

Page 66

1 document, about the order issued by the chief of the Supreme Command

2 headquarters, two couriers returning to the base, it was written in the

3 order we should find and deliver communications equipment, and then the

4 list of -- list -- 19 specific pieces or types of equipment are listed.

5 A. I do not remember any of that.

6 Q. Okay. Moving from that document, what communications, if any, did

7 you receive from the units who went to Herzegovina after they went there?

8 That's the 9th, the 10th, the 2nd Independent Battalion.

9 MR. MORRISSEY: Sorry, Your Honours there is just one matter that

10 arises from the previous passage of cross-examination that should really

11 be clarified here. This witness indicated that he knew and was familiar

12 with a particular person. Now that being the person who's named there,

13 Sakib Okovic, and that it ought to be clarified since the Prosecutors have

14 called another individual at a senior level, with the name of Zakir

15 Okovic, which one he knew, whether he knew Zakir Okovic the witness in

16 this case, Sakib Okovic, the person whose name appears on that document,

17 whether they are the same person in fact or whether they are two different

18 people. Now, I can ask it in cross-examination, of course, but because

19 the issue is now live, it's a matter that's arisen and there has been --

20 expressed some doubt about it on the Prosecution side in my submission

21 that ought to be asked before we leave that topic.

22 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Re, do you mind asking this question to this

23 witness?

24 MR. RE: No. I don't. I just need a copy of Mr. -- what's his

25 name? The other one. The one who gave evidence. I just need a copy of

Page 67

1 his statement to get his name.

2 MR. MORRISSEY: Zakir, Z-a-k-i-r, and "Okovic" is spelled the

3 name.

4 MR. RE: I just need a copy of his statement to get the personal

5 details to put them to the witness. It may just take a moment to find.

6 If I can return to that later -- I will get back to it but I just can't do

7 it right at this moment.

8 JUDGE LIU: Yes, please.

9 MR. RE: What was my question. I've lost it.

10 JUDGE LIU: Did you receive from the units who went to Herzegovina

11 after they went there, that's the 9th, 10th and the 2nd Independent

12 Battalion.

13 MR. RE: Thank you, Your Honour.

14 Q. That's my question.

15 A. Could you be more specific in putting that question, please?

16 Q. All right. At -- on Mr. Halilovic's orders you dispatched, at

17 least three sets of soldiers under your command or from your corps to

18 Mr. Halilovic. After they went -- after they got there, did you receive

19 reports back from them? Or any form of communication?

20 A. I don't remember having received any reports. I'm not aware of

21 any such reports. And I did not maintain any contact with my units until

22 the time they returned. Of all the contacts that I do remember, or

23 reports, there was just this one report by the commander of the 2nd

24 Independent Battalion, Adnan Solakovic, when once he spoke to me via a

25 Motorola and we had a very brief conversation, lasting perhaps one minute.

Page 68

1 Q. What was it about?

2 A. He actually asked to talk to me. It was not I who talked to him.

3 And basically, he requested me that he be withdrawn from down there and

4 returned to the corps as soon as possible.

5 Q. Why did he want to be withdrawn? What did he say to you about the

6 reason?

7 A. He didn't give any reasons. He just said something to the effect

8 that the situation was serious, that it was confusing, and nothing else.

9 I think that at one point, that his unit is a bit specific and so on.

10 That's what he managed to say at the time. Nothing else in particular.

11 And I replied that I would see, and so on.

12 Q. Just to clarify, you said his unit "is a bit specific and so on."

13 I don't quite understand what you mean by "a bit specific"?

14 A. I didn't mean anything by it. It was he who meant something by

15 it.

16 Q. How long after -- sorry. How long after their arrival in

17 Herzegovina did he contact you?

18 A. I don't know exactly. I would need to see the document to see

19 when he left and then when he called me, but I think it's a question of

20 four or five, six days, I'm not sure.

21 MR. RE: Can the witness please be shown P272?

22 Q. Is the document there?

23 A. Yes, I see it.

24 Q. Is that the document that you wanted to refer to?

25 A. I wasn't thinking of any particular document.

Page 69

1 Q. A moment ago you said "I would need to see the document to see

2 when he left and then when he called me but I think it's a question of

3 four, five or six days." All right. Well, have a look at that document,

4 which is addressed to you. It's dated the 11th of September 1993. Is

5 that about the same time, which accords with your memory of when he called

6 you; that is, four, five or six days after he arrived?

7 A. First of all, I doubt that this document was sent to me. When you

8 say that this document was sent to me as the commander of the 1st Corps,

9 this is said by the commander of the 2nd Independent Battalion, Adnan

10 Solakovic, most probably. This document that you see on the screen right

11 now does not exist in the archives of the army of the federation or in the

12 archives of the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion, because I looked for

13 it. Which means that the document was never sent to the 1st Corps

14 command, this document that's being shown right now. Actually, a copy of

15 it was given to me by the commander of the 2nd Independent Motorised

16 Battalion, Adnan Solakovic. I think also at that time or very close to

17 the time when I was signing a report with your people in Sarajevo, and I

18 think this was perhaps a year and a half or a year ago. This was the

19 third report. That was the first time that I saw this document, as it is.

20 I don't know whether my conversation via the Motorola with him coincides

21 with this document. I really don't know. I don't know when I spoke to

22 him. I can't really rule it out, but I can't confirm it either.

23 Q. What about the information in that document? Did he convey that

24 information to you?

25 A. Well, I said more or less what he told me when he called me in

Page 70

1 this brief conversation. Here, if you have the translation, it states --

2 actually, this document was something that he had with him as a personal,

3 private document. If you need it, I can read it out.

4 Q. Sorry, read what out?

5 A. If necessary, I can read the document out.

6 Q. No, no, no. We have a translation here. What I'm asking you is

7 about the information in that. Does that assist your recollection of

8 anything that Mr. Solakovic told you when he communicated with you by

9 Motorola?

10 MR. MORRISSEY: Sorry, I've got to object to that. This one

11 sounds a bit technical but you can't refresh a witness's memory from

12 something that he didn't make or didn't see. He can comment on the

13 information in it, he can say what he remembers, but he's not to be asked

14 to refresh his memory from something that he didn't make.

15 MR. RE: That is just absolutely incorrect under common law, civil

16 law, or any legal system. A witness can refresh his memory from anything

17 which assists to refresh his memory. In America, they classically say

18 they could refresh your memory from a banana. It doesn't have to be your

19 own banana from which you can refresh your memory. It's something which is

20 contemporaneous or which may not even be contemporaneous, which may assist

21 to revive or refresh a memory. It doesn't matter whether it's his

22 document or another one. Someone else could have made a record of a

23 conversation which he took part in, and looking at the document which

24 someone else made to assist the recollection. So the objection is just

25 wrong in law.

Page 71

1 JUDGE LIU: Well, I believe that a witness testified that he

2 received a call through the Motorola at that time, from that person, and

3 you may ask this witness whether the contents, in the conversation through

4 that Motorola, is corresponding to the contents in this document.

5 MR. RE: I think I asked that before. I'll ask it again. I don't

6 think I quite got an answer to it.

7 Q. Mr. Karavelic, you heard His Honour's question which I sort of

8 asked you before. Does what is written there accord in any way with what

9 Mr. Solakovic said to you in his conversation by Motorola?

10 A. I already answered that question earlier, when I said briefly what

11 was talked about. If you read the contents of this document, then you can

12 see the parts that correspond with the things that we talked about via the

13 Motorola.

14 Q. Which parts of the document are those? Okay. I'll take you

15 through it. "We arrived in Jablanica as it was ordered." Yes or no?

16 A. I don't remember.

17 Q. "We carried out reconnaissance for three days but it seems that

18 the agreement with the chief is off."

19 A. I don't recall.

20 Q. "The operation is being postponed more and more."

21 A. Perhaps a part of this was in this conversation, a small part, in

22 a different form and so on.

23 Q. "We have the order until Sunday but it seems that it is off."

24 A. Same answer applies as the previous answer relating to the

25 previous part.

Page 72

1 Q. "Strange things are happening." Did he say that?

2 A. Also via the Motorola, that was the conversation. The

3 conversation between us was not coded. It was an open conversation. So

4 these words were not used. But, however, in some form, he might have

5 intimated some of this, but I cannot state that with certainty.

6 Q. "I am afraid for my soldiers who are of a different religion."

7 A. Also perhaps in a different form. When I said that word before,

8 because of the specificity of his unit, that would correspond with that.

9 Q. "Panic appeared in the unit."

10 A. I don't remember whether that word was used.

11 Q. "People are simply disappearing overnight."

12 A. This, too, is something that's very clear and quite emphatic. So

13 it's possible that in a different form, it would correspond to the

14 conversation.

15 Q. "Send us back into the town any way you can."

16 A. Well, that's more or less what I said when I summarised my

17 conversation with him, that that was what he requested.

18 Q. "If it is necessary, go to the head."

19 A. I cannot be clear.

20 Q. "Let him make up a reason for the return."

21 A. I would give the same answer as my previous answer.

22 Q. "All in all, regular."

23 A. I would repeat the same answer.

24 Q. "The chief put us under the command of Zuka."

25 A. I don't remember.

Page 73

1 Q. "I'm afraid that a conflict between us might occur which is most

2 probable."

3 A. It's perhaps possible that I remember something vaguely, but it's

4 not possible to remember exactly whether any of it was mentioned in the

5 conversation.

6 Q. "Do that as soon as possible."

7 A. It's possible that something like that was said, because this is

8 something that he was asking for, amongst other things.

9 Q. "I do not want to take part in these dirty games and it is not as

10 you were told."

11 A. It's possible that a small part of that was said in a different

12 way, but not so directly.

13 Q. "I will tell you all about the danger when I return."

14 A. I don't remember.

15 Q. "PS, nobody should know this."

16 A. I also don't remember that.

17 Q. "Regards, or greetings, Adnan. Reply." Sorry, just disregard the

18 last one. There was something written over the translation.

19 Now, what I want to ask you was -- you had that conversation with

20 Mr. Solakovic by Motorola. What did you do when he contacted you and said

21 that he wanted to return to Sarajevo with his troops?

22 MR. MORRISSEY: Before that -- sorry, Your Honour, just before

23 that is answered, the last part that was read out was greetings from

24 Adnan, Zakir, and Pezo, and that should be made clear given the --

25 JUDGE LIU: Yes, that's the nickname?

Page 74

1 MR. MORRISSEY: Zakir is a name that's on that list and evidence

2 was given by -- by the witness.

3 JUDGE LIU: Yes, I believe you have to ask that question, whether

4 this was the nickname or the full name.

5 MR. RE: What I'm asking him is whether the information in the

6 document is the same as what he said on the phone. I very much doubt that

7 the greetings at the end would have been said in a telephone call because

8 this is a written correspondence. That's why I didn't go to the last

9 line.

10 JUDGE LIU: The point is not that. The point is we have to make

11 sure they are the same person.

12 MR. RE: Okay. I've just -- I have a real difficulty because I

13 have "unrevised" written across the bottom line and I was asking our case

14 manager to interpret for me what was written underneath. I don't have it

15 in English, those last few words. If Mr. Morrissey has a translation that

16 he could read onto the record I would be very happy.

17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Morrissey.

18 MR. MORRISSEY: Sorry, Your Honour, it's just what's on the

19 screen. Your Honours, greetings from Adnan, Zakir, Pezo, and then it has

20 the word "response" written after that. So it's really the names that

21 there that I was asking ought to be clarified, Adnan, Zakir, and Pezo. As

22 my friend did see fit to put the Adnan part of it, the whole lot should be

23 put.

24 MR. RE: It's not a matter of seeing fit. It was a matter of what

25 I could read and I got to the point where it was no longer relevant for

Page 75

1 my --

2 MR. MORRISSEY: Not suggesting cheating. Sorry, just -- I don't

3 want to seem like I'm suggesting something mean I'm just asking that the

4 whole lot be put. Relax.

5 MR. RE:

6 Q. On the screen, you can see Pradrav [phoen], Adnan, Zakir, Pezo;

7 correct?

8 A. I see that.

9 Q. All right. Now, --

10 JUDGE LIU: Who is that Pezo.

11 MR. RE:

12 Q. Who is Pezo?

13 A. Also one of the officers at the command of the 2nd Independent

14 Motorised Battalion, the same as Zakir Okovic.

15 Q. Now, what was your response to Mr. Solakovic's request of you to

16 return to Sarajevo?

17 A. I don't recall anything in particular. I don't think that I had

18 any specific response. I think that later, I don't know when, whether it

19 was the same day, in the next day, in a couple of days, I got in touch

20 with Rasim Delic or Sefer Halilovic. I don't remember. It's possible. I

21 cannot confirm that, when I requested the return and so on and so forth.

22 I have some idea that perhaps I received some information from somewhere

23 that everything was all right. Nothing else. What else could I do?

24 Q. Could you have ordered Adnan Solakovic to return to Sarajevo

25 without the permission of Mr. Halilovic?

Page 76

1 A. No. I could have done, but that would be a gross breach of

2 discipline, and of the lines of subordination within the chain of command.

3 MR. RE: Can we please move to Exhibit D273?

4 Q. Now, this is a document dated the 11th of September 1993, headed

5 order to attack and bears the name and the signature of Alispago,

6 Zulfikar. Do you have the document there?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. Had you seen this document before you were asked to testify in

9 these proceedings?

10 A. I saw this document only when I came to The Hague, now.

11 Q. I want you to comment in military terms upon a specific part this

12 document. First of all, I just want your general comment on the type or

13 the nature of document. Is it a combat order or is it something else?

14 A. With a heading like this, "combat order," this is then an order to

15 embark on combat operations.

16 Q. And what does it tell you about the subordination of the units

17 named in the order?

18 A. How do you mean, what does it tell me?

19 Q. Well, from reading this document, as a general, or a former

20 general, in the Bosnian army, what does it tell you about the

21 subordination of the units named and who were they subordinated to? That

22 sort of thing.

23 A. A document like this, when it's issued, and like it says here, on

24 this document, "combat order," everything that is stated in such a

25 document, it's final, it's binding. The units carry out final

Page 77

1 preparations and then, under the item, "scheduling the start of the

2 attack," by that time all the units which are under the command of the

3 person who issues this order have to carry out the orders.

4 Q. The document names or refers to, under the heading, "axis one,"

5 and some directions, ABC, it refers, it says, "the above 60 to 80 men who

6 shall be brought in additional are members of Adnan Solakovic's unit."

7 Next paragraph says "the remaining 20 to 40 soldiers from the same unit

8 (Adnan Solakovic's), shall be deployed on the right wing of this axis from

9 Draga, (TT 5500.5) towards Vratca (TT 628)." Is that on your screen, the

10 entire passage? Or do you need the page moved?

11 A. I see it. I see it.

12 Q. I think it's on the first page in the B/C/S, which should be -- I

13 apologise, which should be on page 2 and 3 of the English. The first part

14 is on page 2 and then the specific reference is on page 3, the first

15 paragraph.

16 All right.

17 MR. RE: Have Your Honours seen the right passage?

18 Q. Mr. Karavelic, what does that tell you, having said it's a -- it's

19 a final, binding combat order, what does that tell you about the

20 subordination of Adnan Solakovic's unit when this combat attack was

21 order -- order was issued? And I'm asking you this in your expertise as a

22 general in the Bosnian army.

23 A. It tells me that the person who issued this combat order,

24 everything that's stated in this order, all the units that are mentioned

25 in this order should and must act in accordance with this order and its

Page 78

1 elements and the times stated therein.

2 Q. All right. I want you to be specific about this. The document is

3 signed or purports to be signed by Alispago, Zulfikar and has his name

4 written on the end of it. And it refers to Adnan Solakovic's unit which

5 was from the 1st Corps. What does that tell you about the subordination

6 of Adnan Solakovic's unit at the point when that order was issued? Who

7 were they subordinated -- who was his unit subordinated to?

8 A. As per this document, which probably is derived from the document

9 in which all the units of the 1st Corps are resubordinated to the Zulfikar

10 unit, as per orders of General Halilovic, and so it means that the unit of

11 the 2nd Independent Motorised Battalion was resubordinated to the unit of

12 Zulfikar Alispago.

13 MR. RE: Is that -- is that time?

14 JUDGE LIU: Yes. We will make a break. And we'll resume at 3.30

15 in the same courtroom.

16 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.44 p.m.

17 --- Upon resuming at 3.32 p.m.

18 JUDGE LIU: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, and I just got

19 informed before the start of this afternoon's session that the Prosecution

20 is not ready for the reply to the motions for judicial notice filed on the

21 1st of March 2005. So we rescheduled that short hearing tomorrow morning

22 before we hear the witness. Is that agreeable, Mr. Morrissey?

23 MR. MORRISSEY: Yes, it is, Your Honour.

24 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. I believe that you have something to

25 raise.

Page 79

1 MR. MORRISSEY: It's just two things, Your Honour. The first one

2 was that just basically a personal matter of mine, that I just in the last

3 couple of days have come down with a virus and, frankly, I notice myself

4 becoming a little short tempered this morning and I just want to apologise

5 to the Court and to my learned friend Mr. Re for showing a bit of

6 grumpiness and grouchiness in court. It really wasn't my intention to be

7 like that and I can say that I've got an excuse but it's not really much

8 of an excuse. At all events, Your Honours, I only see fit to mention the

9 illness side of things because of the tight schedule that we've got here.

10 At this stage I'm fine to go ahead and I mean to but I've got to go and

11 get some medical advice about this situation. But however, we are

12 pressing on now, I'll advise the Court if there is any troubles. Things

13 should be fine.

14 The second matter I wanted to raise was simply that about the

15 expert situation, that my learned friend Mr. Weiner mentioned that the

16 expert report was awaiting the conclusion of this particular witness.

17 Now, I'm not sure what the time lines are going to be, we have to give

18 some thought to it, and what I would ask is that we have a discussion

19 about this topic at the close of proceedings tomorrow because -- I mean,

20 there is no use jumping in right now, my learned friend is taking a

21 witness. But we do need to have some sort of time line set for that

22 because whether or not the Prosecution chooses to get an expert at all or

23 how that's going to proceed is a matter of interest and concern to the

24 Defence. So we just want to know what their plans are and perhaps they

25 could tell us that tomorrow evening and then we can make our plans, too,

Page 80

1 because we would like to use the break. It's a break that's forced on us

2 by scheduling things, but both sides could probably use that break

3 constructively, but experts require preparation. And in a case like this

4 now, it might require us to consult our own experts or get a new expert

5 involved in the case as well.

6 In the past we have mentioned that Brigadier Dzambasovic who is a

7 team member is likely to be called and give some evidence. And that

8 remains the position. But at the same time we might also seek to get

9 somebody who is an entirely outside of the proceedings, and

10 Mr. Dzambasovic, of course, is a team member here so -- sorry,

11 Your Honours. Anyway those are some of the reasons why we would like to

12 have an idea of really where that's all headed. I don't call on my friend

13 to answer it now and I'm not -- I don't make any point now, really, just

14 having to say we should discuss this matter tomorrow because otherwise,

15 time will slip by and we won't be able to deal with it.

16 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Well, this Bench is also worried

17 about time schedule issues, especially concerning with the present

18 witness.

19 Mr. Re, would you please shed some light on how long you're going

20 to still need for this present witness?

21 MR. RE: Well, it's very hard to estimate. My original estimate

22 was up to two days to complete his testimony, showing him the documents,

23 but progress has been much slower than we had hoped or anticipated. I

24 will go into tomorrow on present indications, on present pace. The areas

25 I need to continue covering are the documents with Neretva, the return of

Page 81

1 the soldiers, the witness's involvement in Trebevic, in relation to the

2 9th and the 10th and the attempts to bring them under control, and the

3 relationship between those brigades and Mr. Halilovic. Those are the -- I

4 think the four discrete topics and of course I'll ask him to comment on

5 his military expertise and the inspection team order and the map. Now, if

6 I can get short, precise answers I could finish in the afternoon but I --

7 I'm not as hopeful as I was before we started. So I definitely will go --

8 on present pace we will go into tomorrow.

9 In relation to the expert report, I can very briefly answer.

10 Nothing has changed since Mr. Weiner addressed the other day. We were

11 awaiting the finalisation of there witness's evidence before we make a

12 final decision as to whether we get General Ridgeway to supplement his

13 report by, in effect, doing a new report. We can't do that until the

14 completion of the witness's evidence, which of course includes

15 cross-examination. When that happens we will make a decision and probably

16 travel to London to see the general and that will be over the break, and

17 if we do it we will produce something, in time for the Defence to have

18 time to assess it. It won't be -- it won't be a lengthy document. It

19 certainly won't be -- there won't be any surprises in it. It will just be

20 a reassessment in light of the different material which we provide the

21 general with this time, which has clearly changed since the material that

22 was provided to him some years ago because the witnesses weren't called.

23 Clearly we have to give him different material.

24 JUDGE LIU: Well, as for this present witness, how many sittings

25 or how many sessions do you still need? I want to -- more or less, you

Page 82

1 know, specific answer.

2 MR. RE: Well, my wish list wouldn't be any more at all but I

3 think realistically, there is an hour and a half today and -- tomorrow

4 morning. I really sincerely hope I can finish in the first session

5 tomorrow morning.

6 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Mr. Morrissey? Are there lengthy

7 cross-examination for this witness? And would you mind telling us

8 approximately how long are you going to take?


10 JUDGE LIU: To be specific, how many sittings, how many sessions

11 do you need.

12 MR. MORRISSEY: I had in mind originally two normal days. I'm not

13 sure how things are going to play out here. I thought I needed two normal

14 days and we've prepared pretty thoroughly, we hope, so that's to be --

15 that's still to be attempted. Frankly, I think it's desirable, I fully

16 agree with the Tribunal's position about this. We should try to finish

17 him. It's very bad when a witness gets divided by a big break. It's not

18 fair on the witness, frankly, and it has all sorts of problems. I don't

19 know how late people can sit, I don't know what court staff attitude is or

20 the Tribunal's attitude is. I think it's appropriate to do everything we

21 can, and if that means sitting longer, well, we'll cooperate with that.

22 But I think -- I have to responsibly say that even before my

23 learned friend commenced, I thought about two days of normal sittings, and

24 now, I have to say that he's been asked to offer some comments on

25 documents that I -- they were on the list there but they have taken quite

Page 83

1 a considerable amount of time. Now, how that proceeds I just don't know.

2 I was perhaps caught wrong footed a little bit there. What I'm saying is

3 I don't think we are doomed yet and I think it's worth continuing to try

4 hard and I would aim myself to finish with in that two days' period.

5 We've got a bit of extra time tomorrow so it may be, if my -- if my

6 learned friend is able to get through what he needs to get through by

7 tomorrow morning, we can do it and I think we should try. That's my

8 submission, anyway.

9 JUDGE LIU: Are there any solutions if the worst scenario

10 happened? Because on Friday afternoon, we did not book any sittings. I

11 don't know at this moment whether any courtroom is free Friday afternoon.

12 MR. MORRISSEY: Well, I think we would need one, if we could.

13 Your Honours, I --

14 JUDGE LIU: I don't know whether anybody of you made any

15 travelling plans --

16 MR. MORRISSEY: I did.

17 JUDGE LIU: -- next Monday.

18 MR. MORRISSEY: Well, Your Honours, I did. In fact what has

19 sustained me through this last couple of weeks is -- frankly was that

20 fact. Your Honours, look, you know, we'll fit in. I was to be with my --

21 there are personal details that don't matter, I suppose. You know,

22 obviously, but I have made a plan and I was going to fly away on Saturday

23 morning and come back in the middle of next week and then resume work.

24 That was my idea and I've -- we've arranged all of that.

25 Your Honours, if it has to be that we are interposed at sometime

Page 84

1 next week, well, we'll just abide by what the Court says. What I'd be

2 reluctant is -- I don't want -- the only thing I'd prefer is that -- I

3 think the best thing to do is be brave and strong and just try. That's

4 the only thing I can think of, Your Honour, and we will do everything we

5 can to be -- be brief. That's what I'll try to do, Your Honours.

6 JUDGE LIU: As for the Bench, I believe this bench is brief enough

7 to sit morning and afternoon for the week. Well, but anyway, we will try

8 our best. Yes. Having said that, could we have the witness, please?

9 MR. MORRISSEY: I'll undertake that there should be no squabbles

10 between myself and Mr. Re in the course of -- of -- of the rest of this

11 witness, and that will speed things up too.

12 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.

13 [The witness entered court]

14 JUDGE LIU: Good afternoon, Witness.

15 THE WITNESS: Good afternoon.

16 JUDGE LIU: Are you ready to start?

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

18 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Re.

19 MR. RE: Can we please move to the next document. That will be 65

20 ter number 59, 01831486.

21 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI 388.

22 MR. RE:

23 Q. You see the document there, General?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. The document has your name on it. I'm only interested in the top

Page 85

1 part of the document. It's dated the 12th of September 1993 and is

2 addressed to the Supreme Court -- sorry, Supreme Command staff, the chief

3 of the staff, attention Sefer Halilovic in Jablanica.

4 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, this document I think is the one

5 that's got two parts to it.

6 MR. RE: It is. That's why I said I'm only interested in the top

7 part of it.

8 MR. MORRISSEY: Sorry, Your Honours, it's just that in the Bosnian

9 version there's -- it's not just one document. It's two. Anyway, perhaps

10 the witness can comment about that, I don't know, but --

11 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

12 MR. RE: I'm only interested in the top half, the one that's got

13 your name on it. Do you see it there, Mr. Karavelic?

14 A. I see that.

15 Q. Now, is that a document you sent to Mr. Halilovic on the 12th of

16 September at about 0100 hours?

17 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, I'll just have -- the term

18 "document" is going to have to be clarified here because the original, I

19 don't know -- Your Honours will have the English on the screen but the

20 original that we have has -- has got two parts to it. It's got a part on

21 the top and a part on the bottom, and if my friend is asking him whether

22 he sent this document, that's -- that's what probably -- then that had

23 better be clarified. If it's not this document that he's talking about

24 then he better say did you send some other version or some part of --

25 what's on the -- to use the term document -- I'm not suggesting it's

Page 86

1 deliberately misleading, but it could be confuse because a document

2 usually refers to the original document. And that, what we have here -- I

3 don't know -- is -- if it -- perhaps it is the original. But it better be

4 clarified, though.

5 JUDGE LIU: I think, the document is used by the Prosecution is

6 just a general term which means that it might be a paper evidence. So I

7 believe as for the second half, the Prosecution will ask the witness to

8 make some clarification on that.


10 MR. RE:

11 Q. Still concentrating on the top part of the document, that is the

12 piece of paper which has been electronically transmitted to you on the

13 computer screen, and the part which bears your signature, not the order

14 below, which isn't yours, is the top half of that -- is the information --

15 can -- look, there are two documents there, one of yours and one of

16 someone else's?

17 A. The first document is mine, and part of the second document on

18 this same sheet which was probably pasted on to the same sheet by mistake

19 and only part of the second document was reproduced but the entire

20 document must be in the archives of the BH army.

21 Q. You said it's your document. Is it one that was according to that

22 stamp sent to Mr. Halilovic on the 12th of September 1993 at 1 a.m.?

23 A. That's what the document says.

24 Q. It starts off by saying, "The Chief of Staff of the 6th corps

25 informed me about a decision made by the Chief of the Supreme Command

Page 87

1 Staff regarding" -- I'm sorry. I apologise, I've got the wrong one.

2 Start again. It says, "One, based on collected intelligence regarding the

3 aggressor activities in the zone of responsibility of the 1st Corps, I'm

4 asking you, sir [chief], to respect the orders and if possible to somehow

5 ensure the return of parts of the 2nd Independent Battalion, the 9th

6 Motorised Brigade and the 10th Mountain Brigade on the 12th/13th of

7 September 1993." Now, what was the collected intelligence -- I withdraw

8 that.

9 Why were you asking Mr. Halilovic to respect orders? What orders

10 were you asking him to respect?

11 A. I think this is a reference to my orders saying that the units

12 should remain in the Neretva River valley for seven days. It is probable

13 that this date roughly coincides with the expiry of that time period. On

14 account of such intelligence as was gathered regarding enemy activity

15 around Sarajevo, the aggressor's activity around Sarajevo, I was

16 requesting that pursuant to that, the Chief of Staff return the units to

17 Sarajevo.

18 Q. Paragraph 2, you say, "If you still need the assistance of the

19 parts of the aforementioned units, then I am asking you to enable the

20 company from the 2nd Independent Battalion headed by Commander Adnan

21 Solakovic to return to Sarajevo." Why did you say in that request that

22 you were -- if the units had to remain there, could I please have back

23 Adnan Solakovic's? Why did you want his back instead of the other two?

24 A. I wanted him back for a fundamental military reason. The 2nd

25 Independent Battalion was a mobile unit in my corps that was in the

Page 88

1 reserve. It had no area of responsibility and it was not in charge of any

2 section of the defence line. There was information that there might be a

3 new attack against Sarajevo by the aggressor. This was a mobile unit in

4 reserve and it was badly needed to carry out any acts of intervention.

5 That was probably the chief reason. We have spoken about those previous

6 documents, and the interviews with Adnan Solakovic. That may also have to

7 do with the call that Adnan Solakovic made to me.

8 Q. What was your preference for Adnan Solakovic's unit as opposed to

9 Celo's or Caco's men? Having them come back to Sarajevo? Why did you

10 prefer Solakovic to bring his men back in preference to Celo or Caco?

11 A. I've answered a minute ago. This was a mobile unit, a reserve

12 unit. That's why. The other two units were not.

13 Q. Did you contact Mr. Halilovic in relation to this request? Did

14 you have any communication with him about this?

15 A. I don't remember.

16 Q. Did Mr. Halilovic, to your recollection, respond to this request?

17 A. I don't remember.

18 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]

19 JUDGE LIU: Well, I'm sorry for that. You may proceed.

20 MR. RE: I move to tender that into evidence.

21 JUDGE LIU: Any objections?

22 MR. MORRISSEY: Yes, there is, Your Honour. But the witness has

23 identified it. He hasn't been asked, he's effectively said that was his,

24 but he hasn't really provided a basis for whether he means it or not or

25 whether it's just something that looks like -- like what he did. The

Page 89

1 document itself is unusual. I have to say, Your Honour, it's the sort of

2 document that this objection would have to be treated a bit more weakly

3 than some of the other ones because he's indicated -- he hasn't said

4 anything about it at all. Perhaps I'll object at this stage now. Perhaps

5 if my learned friend asks the question whether he remembers it and so on

6 then I'll know what the objection is. At the moment it doesn't look as

7 if -- we are all a bit in the dark about it. So I do object but my friend

8 might be able to knock that on the head, frankly.

9 JUDGE LIU: To me, it's quite clear. This document was a witness

10 document he sent to Mr. Halilovic and he testified about the situation on

11 that part. So I have no problem on this document, so I believe that at

12 least the upper part of this document is admitted into the evidence.


14 JUDGE LIU: As for the lower part, well, I don't believe that

15 Mr. Re tendered the lower part also into the evidence.

16 MR. MORRISSEY: It's just --

17 JUDGE LIU: Unless we could establish connections between the

18 lower part and the upper part of the document.

19 MR. MORRISSEY: Well, Your Honours, I understand your ruling. I'm

20 bound by the ruling. I just have to make this comment generally so I'm

21 not seeming to be fussy about it. In a command responsibility case, of

22 course the Prosecution is going to tender many, many documents that

23 Mr. Halilovic may or may not have seen. That's natural. But it means I

24 have to be particularly cautious to protect his rights because I can't

25 have instructions on -- there are some documents that I can't, some

Page 90

1 obviously I can. Some we are going to disagree about. But I have to be

2 very cautious about that because the chain of custody issue and the normal

3 way of proving a document is very important in a case like this where it's

4 command responsibility and where it can't be inferred that Mr. Halilovic

5 himself will have seen it. And that's the reason I'm very hypersensitive,

6 of course, about the document. It's got two documents on it, like that.

7 Particularly when the document at the bottom is one that we have expressed

8 our suspicions about and are intending to cast aspersions on whenever

9 we -- whenever it gets mentioned. But I understand Your Honour's ruling,

10 we are bound by it, so I say no more.

11 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. This document is admitted into

12 the evidence.

13 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecution Exhibit P388.

14 MR. RE: Can the witness please be shown Prosecution -- sorry,

15 Defence Exhibit D157?

16 Q. Mr. Karavelic, have a look at the document which is dated the 12th

17 of September 1993 and bears the name of commander Rasim Delic at the

18 bottom and it's addressed to the forward command post in Jablanica and the

19 command of the 6th Corps. When did you first see this document?

20 A. I didn't see it during the war. It must have been at a more

21 recent time, perhaps just before I arrived in The Hague, just after I

22 arrived. I think it was following my arrival that I saw this document.

23 This is the document that constitutes the lower half of the document

24 you've just shown me, isn't it?

25 Q. Quite correct, yes. This one is different in that it actually has

Page 91

1 stamps on it, whereas the one that was attached to the one I showed you

2 before appears to be an archived copy of some sort or there may be some

3 other explanation.

4 Now, what I want you to comment on is paragraph 2, which is "Check

5 the accuracy of information regarding the genocide committed against the

6 civilian population by the members of the 1st Corps, 9th Mountain Brigade;

7 if the information is correct, isolate perpetrators and take energetic

8 measures, do everything to prevent such actions. Order the 1st Corps 9th

9 Motorised Brigade deputy commander to return to Sarajevo immediately in

10 order to solve problems in the unit." Unquote. Now, were you given

11 information at that time about a "genocide" or any atrocities at all

12 committed against the civilian population by members of the 1st Corps, 9th

13 Brigade? When I say "at that time," I mean on the 12th of September or

14 very close to that period.

15 A. No.

16 Q. Do you know when Caco, who is the deputy commander of the 9th

17 Brigade, returned to Sarajevo? I'm sorry, Celo -- I meant -- I said

18 Caco.

19 A. Not him personally, I don't know.

20 Q. When were you first -- when did you first hear about what happened

21 in Grabovica?

22 A. Much later, following the return of my units from the Neretva

23 River valley. You're asking me when I first heard about what happened in

24 Grabovica. What does that mean? When did I first hear about that? Does

25 that mean when I first heard about 1 per cent of the total information or

Page 92

1 when I heard 50 per cent of the total information or 100 per cent of the

2 total information? Which of these are you referring to when you're asking

3 me when I first heard about what had occurred in Grabovica?

4 Q. Well, let's start with day 1. What is your memory of the first

5 time that you were told that there had been an incident in Grabovica

6 involving civilians?

7 A. Perhaps on the eve of the Trebevic operation, or just after the

8 operation. There were rumours to the effect that something bad had

9 happened during the Neretva-93 operation, or, rather, the combat activity

10 in the Neretva River valley. Then word spread that certain civilians had

11 been killed, Croatian civilians and so on and so forth. I have heard

12 nothing official to this very day, but I learned about it and I heard

13 about it once this case started to be tried by this Tribunal.

14 Q. When did Adnan Solakovic return from Herzegovina? Was it before

15 Operation Trebevic?

16 A. Yes, I think so, yes.

17 Q. You said earlier, before the break, that he had telephoned you --

18 sorry, called you by Motorola and expressed some concerns about remaining

19 in Herzegovina and he wanted to be returned. Upon his return, did you

20 discuss with him his concerns about why he wished to be returned from

21 Sarajevo -- from Herzegovina?

22 A. I don't think he returned right away. He returned much later.

23 I'm not sure about the day. We should go back and look at the documents.

24 I don't remember having talked to him or indeed that he filed a written

25 report in relation to that. If he has already appeared in this case as a

Page 93

1 witness, perhaps you should take his story as the official one.

2 Q. Let's go back to the document, that's D157. Based upon your

3 military experience, or years as a general, what do you say about -- or

4 what should Mr. Halilovic's response have been to this order, if it had

5 been issued by Rasim Delic?

6 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honours, there is a number of difficulties

7 with that.

8 JUDGE LIU: Yes, yes, yes, yes.

9 MR. MORRISSEY: First is the hypothetical one, I think,

10 Your Honours.

11 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

12 MR. MORRISSEY: The second is that -- as I've indicated the

13 defence impugns this document notwithstanding that we tendered it. We

14 tendered it with warts and all and we propose to raise that at all times

15 but I'm -- anyway, I've made my objection.

16 MR. RE: I'll rephrase the question.

17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, rephrase the question, please.

18 MR. RE:

19 Q. Based upon your military expertise and experience, what is the

20 response that a -- what is the correct response from a commander to

21 receiving an order in these terms? In military terms what should a

22 commander do?

23 MR. MORRISSEY: Once again, Your Honour, there is another matter

24 that has to be raised here. This is directed to two commanders.

25 MR. RE: Well, whichever one it's directed to, it's -- it's a

Page 94

1 question the witness can surely answer as a retired general in the army,

2 what you should do if you get an order like this.

3 JUDGE LIU: Well, this is a general question. Let the witness

4 answer that question.

5 MR. MORRISSEY: Your Honour could I just explain what it is that

6 I'm concerned about? There are a number of different instructions there

7 and they may or may not be directed to the same person. In other words,

8 it may be or it may not be that the Chief of Staff of the SVK was required

9 to comply with all three. It may be that the commander of the 6th Corps

10 was required to comply with one or others. It may be that the answer is

11 able to be given, maybe it's not, but it has to be clear, though. When my

12 friend puts that thing, "What should a commander do," when it's directed

13 to two commanders that issue has to be addressed. It can't be just put as

14 a hypothetical for one commander because it's not addressed to one

15 commander. It's addressed to two.

16 JUDGE LIU: I believe that the Prosecution is asking a general

17 question, in the general circumstances, what should a commander do rather

18 than concentrating on this specific document.

19 MR. MORRISSEY: If the general question is not attaching to the

20 order, then I've got no objection at all.

21 MR. RE: Well, it is attaching to this type of document, of course

22 it is.

23 JUDGE LIU: No, no, no, no, no. At first I believe that you have

24 to ask a general question. Then, if necessary, let's come to the details.

25 MR. RE: I apologise, I'm just looking for the question again.

Page 95

1 Q. The question was based upon your military expertise and

2 experience, what would the correct response from a commander be to

3 receiving an order in the terms of this particular document?

4 A. Each commander at any level of command, generally speaking,

5 whether receiving an order from a superior officer, and even if this is

6 not the case, if no order is received from a superior, if there is

7 information that comes in from his subordinates or in a different way,

8 indicating that some units have perpetrated a certain type of crime,

9 criminal offence, first and foremost, this commander must ensure that some

10 sort of initial briefing takes place involving the commanders of the

11 subordinate units. At this initial briefing, the unit commanders would be

12 expected to report on the issue in hand, depending on how much information

13 is obtained by the commander from his subordinate commanders in relation

14 to a given crime, if that's what we are talking about. Depending on

15 whether information is satisfactory in terms of scope and in terms of

16 depth, the commander must then proceed and request his commander for

17 security to immediately initiate an investigation to set up a working

18 relationship with the civilian police, and to have a joint investigation.

19 That would be necessary. Then automatically, the security service must

20 initiate criminal proceedings. This would be all that a commander would

21 be expected and obliged to do.

22 Q. What about the lines, "Isolate the perpetrators and take energetic

23 measures"? How would a commander be expected -- or what steps should a

24 commander take to quote "isolate the perpetrators and take energetic

25 measures"?

Page 96

1 MR. MORRISSEY: Well, Your Honours, I just raise a matter there.

2 It has to be clear whether this is a general question or whether he's

3 being asked what steps should General Halilovic have taken or Salko Gusic

4 have taken in this situation because the difference between a theoretical

5 approach and what should have happened in the real case must be drawn, and

6 I made this objection before so that has to be clarified.

7 JUDGE LIU: Well, this time I would not say what is my

8 understanding. I would let Mr. Re to explain.

9 MR. RE: It's actually a general question but it leads to the same

10 result. I mean, the question of material ability is of legal submission

11 at the end of the day, but the theoretical is certainly a general and a

12 practical one, but it's a general question.

13 JUDGE LIU: If it's a general question, let's stick to it. Just,

14 you know -- ask your question.

15 MR. RE:

16 Q. It's certainly a general question, General.

17 A. Therefore, the unit commander, and I'm picking up where I left

18 off, following a briefing with his subordinate unit commanders, after it

19 has been ascertained that a crime occurred, at this point the unit

20 commander should make a decision as to what to do now. The investigation

21 must get off the ground immediately. It must be initiated by the security

22 service, as I was saying. However, I'm trying to say this: It's down to

23 the commander entirely to decide whether combat operations should continue

24 or cease. In order for combat operations to cease, he must first obtain

25 approval from his superior officer, needless to say. The commanders'

Page 97

1 mission as it pertains to a given combat task or operation always comes

2 first. If an operation cannot be stopped, or, rather, an operation cannot

3 be stopped simply because an individual, civilian or not, has been killed,

4 or five individuals, or ten individuals, if we are looking at a large

5 scale operation or mission. The mission or the operation must go on until

6 all the tasks are completed. However, once it has been ascertained that a

7 crime has occurred, this should by no means stop the security service from

8 prosecuting any crime that has occurred.

9 Q. What role does the commander have -- sorry, if I've interrupted

10 you, please continue.

11 A. We are speaking in very general terms. But this very much depends

12 on the nature of the crime that has occurred and its scope. The commander

13 should accordingly take measures to put things under control, to reassert

14 control over what's going on, to stop the crime from spreading or from

15 recurring. He should isolate perpetrators. But then most of this is down

16 to the security service having first obtained approval from the commander.

17 Q. Is the security service obliged or expected to report back the

18 results of their investigations to the commander who has ordered them to

19 conduct the investigations?

20 A. This is a very complex question. Can you please repeat it? It's

21 a very serious question.

22 Q. The commander you've ordered an investigation, having been

23 informed of a crime -- I'm sorry, you've asked the security service to

24 investigate something and they go off and do it, is the chief of the

25 security service or whoever you've delegated it to obliged to report back

Page 98

1 to you as a commander at the conclusion of the investigation?

2 A. The question is somewhat difficult. The reason is I'm not certain

3 that I have a full mastery of the book of rules applied by the security

4 service. What their authorities are, what their powers are, what their

5 tasks are, and what measures they are authorised to take. And that's why

6 I'm saying that this question requires a very thorough expert examination.

7 However, it would only be natural for the security service from the same

8 command, the commander's security service, to report back to him.

9 Nevertheless, in practice, and I believe this must be enshrined in the

10 rules governing the work of the security service, no matter what the case

11 was, the security bodies would always send their reports to their own

12 superior in the security service itself, and they would inform their

13 commander to the extent previously authorised by their own superior within

14 the security service, if you get my meaning.

15 MR. RE: Can the witness please be shown Exhibit P124?

16 Q. This is a document dated the 15th of September 1993, headed

17 "order," with the name Sefer Halilovic at the bottom of it and a

18 signature over the name, addressed to 317th Brigade commander, the 45th

19 Brigade commander and the Prozor Independent Battalion commander. I just

20 want you to look at that document. When did you first see that?

21 A. I first saw it after I arrived in The Hague.

22 Q. From your experience as a very senior, retired general, what can

23 you say about the type of order that that is?

24 A. In terms of its substance, it's much like one of the documents

25 that we looked at, the one that involves Zulfikar, except this does not

Page 99

1 say, "Order for attack." But this kind of document talks about how to

2 organise a combat means.

3 Q. What can you -- can you comment upon the level of detail in this

4 particular order?

5 A. At the very least, I should go through the document thoroughly,

6 compare it to a military map, and then I could say something. This is a

7 very brief order that has to do with combat resources. It may or may not

8 be consistent with other, more thorough and more comprehensive documents

9 or it may stand on its own.

10 If you look at the document, you see that there is a list of tasks

11 that were given to various units.

12 Q. I'm going to give you the opportunity to look at a map, which is

13 D131. I'll ask you about the map, then I'll return to the document when

14 you've commented on the map. When was the first time you saw that

15 particular map?

16 A. When I arrived in The Hague.

17 Q. Now, I want you to comment upon the format of this particular map,

18 in terms of -- what I have here is just an identical copy for my own

19 purposes, so don't worry about this one here. Look at the coloured one

20 behind you, to your right. I want you to comment upon the map and the

21 format of the map. In military terms, in the Bosnian army, in 1993.

22 A. First of all, I only saw the copy of this map last week, and this

23 is the first time I've laid eyes on the original. It's a topographic map

24 to show how any type of combat operations were planned, specifically the

25 case before us is the Neretva operation. I can simply state that this is

Page 100

1 the usual type of topographic map with the Neretva operation plan marked

2 on it. It contains all the basic and crucial details that a map like this

3 should show, or an operation plan like this, when it's shown on a map.

4 Q. All right. There are signatures on the map, or there are names on

5 the map. On the top left-hand of the map is Rasim Delic's and on the

6 bottom right, Sefer Halilovic's. What can you say about the positioning

7 of Rasim Delic's at the top left and Sefer Halilovic's at the bottom

8 right?

9 A. There are two options. If you have a plan like this marked on a

10 map for a particular type of combat operations by a particular command,

11 regardless of the specific level of this command, then in the lower

12 right-hand corner, you should have the name of the Chief of Staff if it's

13 a comprehensive operation. This operation plan or combat operation plan

14 would normally be produced by a staff at any level in the chain of

15 command, and the upper left-hand corner you should have the first and last

16 name of the commander of the unit approving the plan, this combat

17 operation plan.

18 The other option is there is a subordinate unit or subordinate

19 command drawing up a plan like this and marking it on a map. And quite

20 specifically, if this is drafted by the corps, as I did a great many

21 times, then my signature would be where Sefer Halilovic's signature is, as

22 the commander of the 1st Corps, in which capacity I have drafted plans and

23 maps like this. And then in the upper left-hand corner, you would have

24 the name of my superior commander, Rasim Delic, followed by his rank and

25 specific position, because he is in this case the one who approves the

Page 101

1 plan. This one specifically was produced by the Supreme Command Staff,

2 and, sure enough, this map meets the fundamental requirements applied when

3 a plan or a topographic map like there is produced.

4 It does have a number of minor faults which are of no consequence.

5 Up there it says Neretva operation, and the next thing that should be

6 marked is the type of map, the scale, the time when the operation is due

7 to commence, and that sort of information, but these are minor details.

8 Q. From looking at this map, can you say who was in command and

9 control of combat?

10 A. That too is a complex question. It is obvious on the map that the

11 chief of the Supreme Command Staff, Sefer Halilovic, authored the map, or

12 rather his officers drafted the map. Or, rather, his staff did.

13 Naturally, by his signature, he stands by the map on behalf of his staff

14 and to corroborate and confirm this decision. In the upper corner you can

15 see that it has been approved by the commander, which means that the

16 Supreme Command Staff is actually the body that drafted this decision.

17 However, I also have to give you at least two possible variants that might

18 occur.

19 The first variant or possibility is that Chief of Staff drafted

20 this decision, the commander approved the decision, and the Chief of Staff

21 then was charged with personally being in charge of control and command,

22 in terms of the execution of this particular plan of operations.

23 Then again, there could have been a second variant. Namely, the

24 Chief of Staff with his staff drafted this plan of operations on orders

25 from the commander. The commander approved it, and as to the question of

Page 102

1 who will be the chief officer in command, who will be in command, which of

2 course is not that often the case, can be the kind of question that would

3 be dealt with subsequently, after the actual production of such a plan of

4 operations. Let me remark that along with a topographic map of this kind

5 which has drawn into it the plan -- the plan of operations, must

6 necessarily be accompanied by a combat order, written, the text of the

7 combat order, for the actual execution of the operation in question.

8 In its full scope an operation of this kind, which is quite

9 complex operation, should be accompanied by a written document of at least

10 50 or up to 100 pages, including the orders for all the arms of service,

11 and the combat orders for all the participants in the execution of such a

12 plan of operations.

13 What specifically is the situation here is something that I cannot

14 say because I would require more time for that in order to study many more

15 documents which pertain to this, especially many more documents. In

16 relation to the number of documents that I've already had occasion to

17 examine, I would also have to study numerous legal regulations. I would

18 have to speak to a much larger number of people and so on and so forth.

19 Namely this, as I've already mentioned, requires an expert approach in

20 order for me to be able to give you a more comprehensive reply in the

21 sense of an answer to the question whether General Sefer Halilovic was the

22 sole and genuine commander of this operation or not. Or perhaps things

23 evolved somewhat differently. Perhaps somewhere midway between these two

24 solutions or variants.

25 Q. Can we -- can you please return to the document on the screen,

Page 103

1 P124? I think before I showed you the map you said you wanted to see a

2 map. Yes. You said "at the very least I should go through the document

3 thoroughly, compare it to a military map, then I could say something."

4 Now, what I want you to do is go through the document and compare it to

5 that military map and then say something. What I want to know is whether

6 that order, P124, relates to what you see on the map, D131, based upon

7 your extensive military experience and your retiring last year as a

8 general in the Bosnian army.

9 MR. MORRISSEY: Okay. Well, now I do object. Your Honours, what

10 the Prosecutor has asked here, I must be very precise about it, he's asked

11 him to go through that document and compare it to that military map.

12 "What I want to know," said Mr. Re, "is whether that order, P124, relates

13 to what you see and the map, D131." Now, Your Honours were present -- of

14 course, necessarily present whether I made the same point when my learned

15 friend Ms. Chana was taking a witness. It's just playing a -- I can't

16 think of a better term, than this, playing a card trick with the witness.

17 To get the witness to pick out that order which we know about and not to

18 refer to the other orders that relate to the particular episode at Uzdol,

19 which we also know about, in my submission, is very misleading and very

20 unfair to the witness. When I say misleading, I don't mean to cast

21 personal aspersion. I just mean it puts the witness in a position of

22 having to give an opinion based on little knowledge. So I object to this

23 question being asked in relation to this document, unless it be shown that

24 the witness has got -- has at least been acquainted with the relevant

25 other documents that concern that particular axis of attack.

Page 104

1 JUDGE LIU: To my understanding, that's -- document P124, as well

2 as the map, D131, are already admitted into the evidence already. This

3 witness gives testimony to those two documents, and he said that he never

4 seen those two documents before he came to The Hague. So I wonder how

5 much we could get from the testimony of this witness, whether his

6 testimony will be any assistance to our case. Because I understand that

7 this witness is called as a fact witness, not as an expert witness, in our

8 particular case.

9 Mr. Re, I hone you could take my remarks into consideration.

10 MR. RE: I certainly do, but I certainly note that each of the

11 military people we've -- senior military people we have called have been

12 cross-examined at some length about matters that are basically of

13 expertise, asked to comment upon subordination, documents, what they mean

14 militarily, and I anticipate, and I hope I won't be disappointed because I

15 anticipate Mr. Morrissey will do exactly the same with this witness. And

16 what I'm asking is the retired general to comment, because his units were

17 involved in these particular operations, in what these documents mean. It

18 may obviate the need for us to call expert evidence if he can give an

19 opinion based upon his expertise of what they mean.

20 JUDGE LIU: Well, in this situation, you might ask some questions

21 related to the unit attached to this witness's command.

22 MR. RE:

23 Q. This particular order doesn't refer to the 9th or the 10th Brigade

24 specifically, but the question I'm after is -- the answer -- what I want

25 to ask him about is the meaning of resubordination there in terms of the

Page 105

1 document, and relating that to the map which the witness asked to -- we

2 asked to see a military map. That's why I showed him the map. And I

3 asked him to comment in general terms upon the detail there. He said he

4 would need to look at a map. I was going to ask him how it that relates

5 to the map which is the map in question and about the resubordination and

6 how it relates to the order.

7 JUDGE LIU: Well, as I said before, the witness testified he never

8 saw these two documents before he came to The Hague. How could he give

9 some reliable testimony on the resubordination issues?

10 MR. RE: That didn't stop the Defence asking Mr. Gusic about the

11 inspection team order, for example, and he hadn't seen that either. I

12 mean, every witness who is of a certain level has been asked to comment

13 upon the meaning of something, and I will ask Mr. Karavelic about the

14 inspection team; I'm sure Mr. Morrissey will do exactly the same and put

15 his case to the witness because the witness is a general. He will ask him

16 what an inspection team is, and what this means, and what Mr. Halilovic

17 really in command or control or was it a coordinating role? These

18 questions have been asked of everyone. They will be asked of this witness

19 by the Defence.

20 JUDGE LIU: Well, as for the inspection team, I believe there is

21 some reasons and grounds for putting some questions to this witness, of

22 course, on the basis to know whether this witness is aware of that

23 inspection team or not. But as for this map, and the document, I have

24 serious doubts about that. In the meantime, the Defence has the

25 objections to this.

Page 106

1 MR. RE: I'll move on.

2 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much for your cooperation.

3 MR. RE: Could the witness please be shown the next document. I

4 withdraw that.

5 I want to move now to the return of the 9th and the 10th Brigade

6 to Sarajevo.

7 Q. Are you able to say now: How long after they left that they

8 actually returned to Sarajevo?

9 A. I can't say with precision when they returned. I believe that

10 there is a report on when the 2nd Independent Battalion or some of the

11 units of the 2nd Independent Battalion returned.

12 Q. What about the 9th and the 10th? Are you able to say in days or

13 weeks how long after they left did they actually return to Sarajevo?

14 A. The only thing I can say is that they did not return within the

15 scheduled time according to my orders. They stayed much longer. But I

16 would have to track down the pertinent documents to check on the exact

17 dates of their return.

18 Q. Are you referring to a period of seven days there, are you?

19 That's scheduled time?

20 A. That is what I'm referring to, yes.

21 Q. Upon their return, did you have communication with Mr. Halilovic

22 in relation to these units?

23 A. Not that I can recall. I don't think so.

24 MR. RE: Could the witness please be shown document 65 ter 77,

25 which is number RR271562?

Page 107


2 MR. RE:

3 Q. Do you have the document there?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. It's an order of the 23rd of September 1993 from the name at the

6 bottom is Sefer Halilovic with a signature over it addressed to the 1st

7 Corps commander, 1st Corps command, I'm sorry, to the attention of the

8 commander. The order has number 02/1109-1. Now, is this an order that

9 Mr. Halilovic sent to you on that day?

10 A. Well, according to this document, that's it. I think this is what

11 I referred to the day -- yesterday or the day before yesterday, when I

12 said that an order had arrived asking for units. They did not designate

13 specifically what units but just a number of units that were required with

14 a specific number of men per unit.

15 Q. Do you remember actually speaking to Mr. Halilovic in relation to

16 this order, either before or after you received it?

17 A. I cannot remember any specific conversation or any element from

18 any such conversations. In fact I think that we did talk about it but I

19 cannot recall any details of such conversation.

20 Q. What was your personal reaction to receiving an order asking for

21 more soldiers from Mr. Halilovic? Not your response, but your personal

22 reaction.

23 A. I don't know. I don't remember.

24 Q. What did you do when you received this order?

25 A. What was I supposed to do? I acted accordingly. I obeyed the

Page 108

1 order. I proceeded to set up this unit.

2 Q. Where did you obtain the -- the soldiers from?

3 A. There must be other documents, follow-up documents, to this order.

4 I believe I tried to establish a battalion using three or four from other

5 brigades. I assigned Zijo Rujanac as commander and his deputy was

6 supposed to be Fuad Abadzic. There was a certain amount of trouble with

7 these two men, and I believe I then issued another document appointing

8 different people instead of those two, and so on and so forth. And unless

9 I'm mistaken, this unit never left due to some difficulties. And then

10 soon after, the Neretva operation was stopped.

11 Q. Point 4 of the order says "The battalion commander will lead the

12 unit from Sarajevo at 1900 hours on the 23rd of September 1993, transport

13 from Hrasnica is organised in a motorised vehicle, direction of march,

14 Sarajevo, Hrasnica, Pazaric, Bradina, Neretva River, Donja Jablanica.

15 Commander of the unit will in Donja Jablanica report within the unit

16 OSVKIKM," [sic] that's the Supreme Staff command forward command post.

17 Why have you said there that they should report to the Supreme Command

18 Staff forward command post?

19 A. I'm not sure what you expect me to tell you, because everything

20 was an option at the time. There was probably one of the documents that

21 had arrived from Jablanica that stated "forward command post," and I

22 followed that. I didn't make this up.

23 Q. What is a forward command post, in military terms?

24 A. Each commander from brigade level up, division, Corps, army, and

25 so on and so forth, is entitled to set up a forward command post according

Page 109

1 to tactical and doctrinal rules. Forward command post? What does that

2 mean? And I'm speaking in general terms. In order to -- the basic

3 command post where you usually have the unit commander, the brigade or

4 corps commander, respectively, and the greatest part of the command of the

5 headquarters in its entirety. The entire staff, all the sectors, the

6 assistant commanders who report to the commander and so on and so forth.

7 Should the need arise, in a specific area under the control of that unit

8 on account of specific ongoing combat operations, whether because there

9 are too many mixed-type units because no good communication lines can be

10 set up or because the -- because of the requirements of the type of combat

11 itself that is going on, in order to be more effective and more successful

12 in carrying out combat tasks, or rather, the specific combat mission that

13 he must carry out within his own area of responsibility, a commander may

14 set up a group to be headed by one of his most experienced and responsible

15 officers. That is, an officer from his own command. Usually, you send a

16 deputy to the forward command post. If not a deputy then a chief. If not

17 a chief then the next officer in line, depending on the level of

18 difficulty of the task that this command post faces. Normally if you have

19 a forward command post you appoint a commander and a number of other

20 officers. When I say a number of other officers, what do I mean? I mean

21 that depending on the nature of the task in hand, the task to be carried

22 out by the forward command post, one appoints one or more officers, if

23 possible, from each of the different command bodies of the unit in

24 question. I believe I have been abundantly clear on this issue. If you

25 need any further clarifications, I'll be glad to provide them.

Page 110

1 Q. You've been extremely helpful with that comprehensive answer. Why

2 would the Supreme Command staff have -- have a forward command post in

3 Jablanica, Donja Jablanica?

4 MR. MORRISSEY: Yes, Your Honour, I have to object to that one.

5 There is a dispute as to whether what there was in that area was really an

6 IKM -- was really a forward command post or not. The term has been used

7 but the issue has been squarely raised in this case as to whether or not

8 that thing called an IKM is in fact a forward command post and functioning

9 as one. So when my friend asks that question, "Why should the supreme

10 court staff have a forward command post in Jablanica, or Donja Jablanica,"

11 the preliminary question is: Did they really have one there at all?

12 JUDGE LIU: Well, I believe that is a question put by the

13 Prosecution is within the scope of this document, because the forward

14 command post was mentioned in that document. The only issue is that what

15 is that forward command post mentioned in this document. Is that the

16 General Staff's IKM or not? So I don't think there is any problem for the

17 Prosecution to put this question to the witness.

18 MR. MORRISSEY: As the Court pleases.

19 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

20 MR. RE:

21 Q. You said earlier you weren't making it up when you sent this off

22 to the -- or you said in the order that they should report to the Supreme

23 Command staff's IKM in Donja Jablanica. The question is why would the

24 Supreme Command Staff have an IKM in Donja Jablanica?

25 A. First and foremost, I must say it would be much more logical to

Page 111

1 ask General Delic, General Divjak or General Stjepan Siber about this. All

2 these were generals who were in top positions in the Supreme Command

3 Staff, and these people could provide the best answer. You're asking me,

4 as one of their subordinates at the time, including General Sefer

5 Halilovic. I'll try to give you an answer. In 1993, and I believe it

6 will take at least a couple of minutes for me to answer this question, was

7 the most critical year for Bosnia and Herzegovina and its armed forces.

8 There were three enemies, three serious enemies that joined forces in

9 1993, and tried, in a concerted effort, to coordinate their respective

10 forces to crush Bosnia-Herzegovina, to crush its legitimate government,

11 and to force the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina to capitulate. These

12 three enemies were: The Army of the Republic of Srpska; the Army of

13 Yugoslavia led by the Belgrade regime; the next enemy was the Croatian

14 Defence Council, and the Croatian army, led by the regime in Zagreb; the

15 third enemy was Fikret Abdic, himself a product of an agreement between

16 those two other enemies, Milosevic and Tudjman.

17 What was the gist of their agreement back in 1993? And then after

18 that, I would go on to explain the need to set up a forward command post.

19 In 1993, they distributed tasks among themselves. The army of the

20 Republic of Srpska said in 1993, we shall keep conquering parts of the

21 territory under the control of the BH army throughout the eastern part of

22 Bosnia-Herzegovina, north to south, or rather from Trebinje to Bijeljina.

23 I assume that each and every one of us are able to imagine the map of

24 Bosnia-Herzegovina. In 1993, the Army of the Republika Srpska conquered

25 large chunks of territory in that part of Bosnia-Herzegovina thereby

Page 112

1 turning Gorazde into an enclave, turning Zepa into an enclave, and turning

2 Srebrenica into an enclave. Failing by a narrow margin to place Sarajevo

3 in the second ring. Throughout the army of the Republic of

4 Bosnia-Herzegovina in central Bosnia, around Banja Luka and in the broader

5 area carried out no offensive operations whatsoever, because it had

6 reached an agreement with the Croatian Defence Council that they would

7 carry out a huge amount of offensive operations in Central Bosnia and

8 Herzegovina. The Croatian Defence Council obliged in the spring of 1993

9 and launched offensive operations in Central Bosnia covering almost the

10 entire area of responsibilities of the 3rd Corps, including the 4th Corps

11 and including the 6th Corps. The objective of the Croatian Defence

12 Council was to achieve a military occupation of the territory which they

13 considered to be part of their three communities of the Croatian

14 Herceg-Bosna. The first Herceg Bosnia was established on the 18th of

15 November 1991, comprised 30 municipalities. The second one, Bosanska

16 Posavina comprised ten municipalities, and the third one, in Central

17 Bosnia, the central one, comprised four municipalities.

18 When the Supreme Command of Bosnia and Herzegovina felt the blade

19 of a knife at its throat, to be quite literal, it was only then that the

20 3rd Corps was allowed to go and clash with the Croatian Defence Council.

21 It was only a matter of days before the army would capitulate. The 3rd

22 Corps launched a number of operations and throughout June and July

23 improved their military situation. The Croatian Defence Council

24 experienced a degree of failure in central Bosnia, in military terms, and

25 they realised that there was no way they could achieve their objectives in

Page 113

1 the summer of 1993. Then they decided to cleanse Herzegovina. They

2 launched an attack on Mostar and the entire Neretva River valley in

3 concert with the Army of the Republic of Srpska. I'm not saying this off

4 the top of my head now. All that I'm saying is based on specific

5 documents. The Neretva operation 93 was planned and was fully justified

6 from a purely military point of view, if you ask me. I'm not talking

7 about crimes. Crimes, of course, were not justified. I am talking about

8 the Neretva 93 operation from a purely military standpoint. Once the

9 Croatian Defence Council had failed to cleanse Central Bosnia, they wanted

10 to make sure they would cleanse Herzegovina, the Neretva River valley, and

11 whatever they managed to conquer.

12 Negotiations in Bosnia-Herzegovina were coming to an end, followed

13 by the Washington Agreement on the Federation. Now we are coming to our

14 old question: Why did one need to set up a forward command post if,

15 indeed, it was a forward command post? I'm not committing myself either

16 way.

17 The reason was, precisely, the complex military problems that were

18 being faced, but we must never forget about the political problems faced

19 at the time. The greatest problem to the military officers of

20 Bosnia-Herzegovina was how to establish some sort of communication with

21 the civilian bodies of government, and also how to establish coordination

22 between the 4th and the 6th corps and part of the 3rd corps. I believe

23 Bugojno and Gornji Vakuf were by this time already within the area of

24 responsibility of the 3rd Corps, and the central area around Konjic and

25 the broader area was under the 6th Corps, while Mostar and its

Page 114

1 surroundings were under the 4th Corps.

2 If you look at this map and realise the extent of the area that

3 this operations plan covered, and I'm speaking from a purely military

4 point of view, it would have been natural to set up a body like that in

5 order to prevent plans devised by the Croatian Defence Council and the

6 Croatian army from coming to fruition in Herzegovina. I forgot to mention

7 the third enemy, namely Fikret Abdic. He tried to use his own army to

8 crush the 5th Corps of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina in the Bihac area,

9 and in the broader area around Bihac. He failed in his intention to crush

10 the 5th Corps but he managed to take some of their territory and control

11 it for a period of time. This army was led by Fikret Abdic, the

12 self-styled president of the Autonomous Region Bosanska Krajina. He was

13 tried for this in Zagreb after the war and he was sentenced to 20 years of

14 imprisonment.

15 MR. RE: I think we are over time, Your Honour.

16 JUDGE LIU: Yes, yes. I think it's time for us to adjourn and

17 we'll resume tomorrow morning at 9.00.

18 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 5.09 p.m., to

19 be reconvened on Thursday, the 21st day of April,

20 2005, at 9.00 a.m.