1 Friday, 19 July 2013
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.11 a.m.
6 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone. Yes. I apologise for the
8 Yes, Mr. Harvey.
9 MR. HARVEY: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours. May I
10 introduce Ms. Charline Pasteur, who is a graduate law student with a
11 masters in the law of state rebuilding and fighting impunity from the
12 Universite Aix Marseille in France. She's been with the team since
13 March. Thank you.
14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. We are sitting pursuant to Rule 15 bis.
15 Judge Morrison is indisposed, unfortunately.
16 Shall we continue, Mr. Mitchell.
17 MR. MITCHELL: Thank you, Mr. President.
18 WITNESS: RADOVAN RADINOVIC [Resumed]
19 [Witness answered through interpreter]
20 Cross-examination by Mr. Mitchell: [Continued]
21 Q. General, good morning.
22 A. Good morning.
23 Q. I just want to ask you just two very brief general questions
24 before we go back to Srebrenica. President Karadzic was the only person
25 who was authorised to appoint and relieve generals in the VRS, wasn't he?
1 A. By the decree of the president of the republic generals are
2 appointed, yes.
3 Q. And this is a discretionary right, isn't it? So it's up to
4 President Karadzic's discretion who gets appointed and when they get
6 A. Well, there are procedures involved, you know. There are
7 personnel commissions that make proposals, then a certain time has to be
8 spent at a particular position in a certain rank. So it's not totally
9 his discretion. However, since he is the one who makes the appointment,
10 it could be put that way.
11 Q. Maybe I'll just read you what you said in the Krstic case at
12 transcript 8036 in that case. You said:
13 "It is his right, the right of the president of the republic, to
14 appoint generals to such high positions such as the position of corps
15 commander. It is a discretional right of the president to do that. So
16 it's the president's discretional right to promote someone to general and
17 it's his discretional right to appoint someone to the position of corps
18 commander as well."
20 A. Yes. I'm not challenging that now either. I'm just saying that
21 there are certain prerequisites that have to be met by the candidate in
22 order to get promoted.
23 Q. Yesterday we were talking about directive 7. I want to now ask
24 you some questions about happened after directive 7, the series of events
25 leading up to Krivaja 95.
1 Now, at paragraph 135 of your report, if you can turn to that -
2 it's Exhibit D3864 in the English page 53, B/C/S, page 60 - you talk
3 about detective 7/1, and you say that the reference number of directive
4 7/1 clearly indicates that this document continues the realisation of
5 directive number 7 because otherwise it would have been given the number
6 8 or some other number instead of directive 7/1. So we can agree there
7 is no dispute. Directive 7/1 continues the realisation of directive 7.
8 That's what it says in your report.
9 A. Yes.
10 MR. MITCHELL: If we can have directive 7/1 in e-court. It's
11 Exhibit P2246. It's page 4 in the English and page 3 in the B/C/S.
12 Q. And there's a particular section, General, where we can see on
13 this page that General Mladic orders planned combat battles and
14 operations in accordance with directive number 7 around the Srebrenica
15 and Zepa enclaves. Can you see that bit? In the very last paragraph in
16 the B/C/S.
17 A. Yes, I see that.
18 Q. It's fair to say the whole point of a phrase such as "in
19 accordance with" means that you don't have to repeat the entirety of the
20 previous order; right?
21 A. The previous order does not have to be repeated, and it doesn't
22 have to be that way verbatim, because directive 7 is being provided as a
23 general document.
24 Q. Now, General, you were aware that General Mladic issued an order
25 on the 12th of May, 1995, to the Drina Corps to separate the enclaves of
1 Srebrenica and Zepa and create conditions for their liberation. You're
2 aware of that order, are you?
3 A. No. I said yesterday that I hadn't seen that order of the
4 Drina Corps, and indeed that is the case.
5 Q. This is -- this is a different order, General. Maybe I'll bring
6 it up for you. It's Exhibit P5216. It's the 12th of May. Have you seen
7 this order before, General?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And you can see in the header of the order -- we'll just wait for
10 it to come up in English. That it's an order to stabilise defence around
11 the enclaves of Srebrenica and Zepa and create conditions for their
12 liberation. So you saw this order when you were preparing your report,
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And you're aware that this order couldn't be implemented at the
16 time in May because the Drina Corps didn't have enough resources free to
17 undertake the operation to create conditions for the liberation of the
19 A. The Drina Corps certainly did have the resources to carry out the
20 operation that's carried out in July 1995, because they had the forces of
21 a reinforced brigade. The forces that were there in July 1995 certainly
22 could have been there in May 1995 as well. Whether he was handicapped
23 for some other reasons, that's a different matter. However, as for the
24 operation as it was carried out, he did have the resources for that.
25 Q. Okay. At paragraph 346 of your report, you talk about how in
1 your view the Krivaja 95 operation wasn't planned in advance and was a
2 reaction to a Muslim attack on the village of Visnjica which took place
3 on the 26th of June. When you were preparing for the Krstic case you
4 interviewed General Zivanovic, didn't you?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And did General Zivanovic tell you during that interview that the
7 Drina Corps actually started their preparations for the attack on
8 Srebrenica in early June 1995?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Well, let me just read you a little quote from a speech that
11 General Zivanovic gave on the 12th of July, 1995, the day after the
12 enclave had fallen, and this is from the Srebrenica trial video. The
13 transcript is P4202, e-court page 256. So on this speech -- in this
14 speech on 12th of July, General Zivanovic says: At the beginning of June
15 or precisely at the end of May we started to carry out preparations and
16 then took Zeleni Jadar and tested what the expulsion of UNPROFOR with
17 weapons looked like. We did it the army way, and as it turned out that
18 we had no casualties and no wounded and then slowly conditions ripened
19 for what we did now.
20 General, did the Defence give you a copy of this speech when you
21 were preparing your report?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You'd agree, wouldn't you, that the commander of the Drina Corps
24 on the 12th of July, 1995, would have known exactly when his unit, his
25 corps, started preparations for the attack on Srebrenica; right?
1 A. The commander could know, of course, but the question is whether
2 he said that. Taking Zeleni Jadar was a precondition for using the
3 Milici-Skelani road. It was under the control of UNPROFOR, Muslim forces
4 and it could not be used, and therefore the manoeuvres and the supplies
5 for the corps were seriously threatened. Zeleni Jadar had to be taken
6 irrespective of Operation Krivaja 95. Of course, for a long time there
7 had been the need to control the area between the enclaves, because these
8 were two enclaves, not one, and they communicated mutually as if it were
9 one, and that is not being contested that the corps was supposed to
10 separate the two enclaves, Srebrenica and Zepa.
11 Q. I understand that, General, but the question was very specific.
12 General Zivanovic said at the beginning of June or precisely at the end
13 of May we started to carry out preparations. That's the commander of the
14 Drina Corps saying they started to prepare for the attack on Srebrenica
15 in late May, early June; right?
16 A. I don't think that is the case. In a broader operational sense,
17 the taking of Zeleni Jadar is preparation, but that was the task
18 irrespective of Krivaja 95.
19 Q. Okay. Well, I think General Zivanovic was very clear, General,
20 so we'll move on.
21 Can you look at paragraph 321 of your report. It's
22 Exhibit D3864, English page 123, 141 in the B/C/S. And you say: The
23 mere fact that the Drina Corps commander refers in the preamble of the
24 order for operational combat Krivaja 95 to directive 7 and directive 7/1
25 is not sufficiently convincing proof that the execution of the operation
1 was ordered by the VRS Main Staff or President Karadzic.
2 And then you go on in that paragraph and you list a number of
3 different forms that the order could have taken, and you say you didn't
4 have any of the above at your disposal about the order that actually
5 trigger the operation.
6 Now, you mention in there that an oral order from the VRS
7 Main Staff commander could have been one of the ways that the operation
8 was started; is that right?
9 A. Started, but then after the planning the decision was supposed to
10 be brought to him for his approval. He could order -- I mean, he could
11 call the commander and say prepare operation such and such and such at
12 such and such a place with such and such an objective, but the commander
13 was duty-bound after the preparation and planning to submit the decision
14 for approval. I did not see any such thing, and on that basis, I came to
15 the conclusion that that operation had been prepared in haste.
16 Q. General, the commander of the Main Staff wasn't the only person
17 who could issue an oral order, was he? Supreme Commander could also
18 issue an oral order to start the Srebrenica operation; correct?
19 A. No, not to the corps commander, only to the commander of the
20 Main Staff if we are going to respect military hierarchy. If we are
21 going to disrupt the system, then it can be done, but in that case he'd
22 have to inform the commander of the Main Staff that he had done that. I
23 do not have any such information. Or -- or -- may I clarify? May I?
24 Would you allow me to clarify a bit more? If the commander of the
25 Drina Corps received oral orders from the Supreme Commander to carry out
1 an operation, he himself was duty-bound to inform the commander of the
2 Main Staff, but I assure you that the Supreme Commander has no need to
3 issue orders orally unless these are corrective orders, that is to say if
4 something is urgent. However, since this has to do with the
5 implementation of a operation, that is never done orally. That is done
6 in writing. So an order is issued in writing to prepare and carry out
7 some operation, but let us say that he even did it orally. In that case
8 the commander is duty-bound to inform his superior, and then the
9 superior's also duty-bound to inform the commander of the Main Staff.
10 Q. Let me remind you, General, of what you said in the Krstic
11 case --
12 JUDGE KWON: Can I intervene here?
13 MR. MITCHELL: Yes, please.
14 JUDGE KWON: General Radinovic, as long as the commander who was
15 told to do something from the Supreme Commander informs the commander of
16 the Main Staff and the commander of the Main Staff agrees with it,
17 there's nothing wrong there. There's no disruption of singleness of
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
20 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
21 Yes, please continue, Mr. Mitchell.
22 MR. MITCHELL: Thank you, Mr. President.
23 Q. General, you said you didn't have any information about whether
24 an oral order had been issued to start the attack on Srebrenica. If you
25 did have information about who issued an oral order to start the
1 Srebrenica operation, you'd take that into account in determining -- in
2 determining who had ordered this operation in the first place, wouldn't
4 A. Let me tell you this: I know that at the time there was talk
5 about Karadzic having said that he had ordered Krivaja 95 operation to be
6 carried out. This looked to me as a rather PR way to settle accounts
7 with Mladic rather than a very serious warning coming from the
8 Supreme Command. This is not the way things are being done. Since I
9 never found any proof of that, I simply ignored it, but I did hear these
11 Q. So let me clarify. The rumours you're talking about, this would
12 include President Karadzic's speech to the 52nd Assembly session where he
14 "I ordered in verbal and written form to attack Zepa and
16 It includes that; right?
17 A. I never saw anything in writing. As for this verbal statement, I
18 was aware of that, but as I said, it seemed to me more to be a way of
19 settling scores rather than a serious way of communicating within the
20 system of politics and military. I presume that had that been the case,
21 there would have been at least some written record of that.
22 Q. Well, President Karadzic made that statement to the 52nd Assembly
23 session. In the 54th Assembly session in October 1995, he said something
24 very similar. He said:
25 "I personally supervised the plan without the knowledge of the
1 Main Staff, not even hiding anything, but I happened to run into
2 General Krstic and advised him to go straight into town and pronounce the
3 fall of Srebrenica and later we would chase the Turks around in the
4 woods. I approved an immediate task and a radical task, and I don't
5 regret it."
6 So you didn't take this into account either?
7 A. No. I didn't take that into account either, because it doesn't
8 resemble anything that Karadzic had previously done, and I understood
9 that to be a kind of fiery speech aimed at demystifying the role of
10 Mladic in the military.
11 Q. General, you reviewed some witness statements in preparation for
12 your report, didn't you?
13 A. Yes, I did say that, but if you're asking me precisely, I cannot
14 provide you an answer. If I were to see it, perhaps I could.
15 Q. Do you recall yesterday I asked you a question about
16 Milenko Lazic, the Drina Corps Chief of Operations and Training, who
17 drafted that Drina Corps order with the language from directive 7 that
18 you hadn't seen before?
19 A. I remember that it was Lazic who signed it -- or, rather, who
20 prepared this order. But, look, it was impossible for Lazic to made his
21 own plan based on directive 7. He could have done that only pursuant to
22 an order from the Main Staff because an operation can not be planned
23 based on directive 7.
24 Q. Let me read you a little section of Milenko Lazic's testimony --
25 JUDGE KWON: Before you do so, let me ask you, General Radinovic.
1 You said earlier today that you heard -- you did hear some rumours, these
2 rumours about how the Krivaja 95 was prepared, discussed. Could you
3 explain a little bit further about what you heard?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I heard of it. I knew of it. I
5 read about it to the effect that Karadzic had said that he didn't
6 understand why we were turning Mladic into a legend whilst we have such a
7 remarkable general such as General Krstic, who under my direct
8 supervision prepared Krivaja 95 and carried it out in an excellent
9 manner. So these are the stories that I heard. But since that was
10 happening at the time when there was a rift which culminated between the
11 Supreme Commander and the commander of the Main Staff, I didn't perceive
12 that to be a normal way of communicating, and that is why I understood it
13 in that context as I explained.
14 JUDGE KWON: Do you know Mr. Salapura testified here at the end
15 of last month?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I don't.
17 JUDGE KWON: Do you know him?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know him personally. He
19 knows who I am, and I know who he is.
20 JUDGE KWON: He testified to the effect that at the time or
21 before Krivaja 95 was prepared in Drina Corps, Mr. Karadzic visited
22 directly in person the Drina Corps and gave some assignment. Did you by
23 any chance run into any such information while preparing your report?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
1 Back to you, Mr. Mitchell.
2 MR. MITCHELL:
3 Q. General, let me put to you part of the evidence that
4 Milenko Lazic gave in a different case at this Tribunal. This is in the
5 Popovic case at transcript page 21727. Milenko Lazic said:
6 "That operation which was aimed at ending firing from those areas
7 was initiated in late June 1995 when the president came to the corps
8 command from somewhere. President Karadzic, accompanied by the president
9 of the assembly, Krajisnik, and his wife, and of course the entourage
10 that remained afterwards. I was in the operations room on duty and the
11 person on duty at the gate informed me that President Karadzic had
12 entered the command building. I came out. They were already in the
13 corridor. I submitted a report and he asked that we sit down somewhere."
14 He then says:
15 "We sat down in the room immediately next to the operations room.
16 We offered them if you want to drink something as hosts. He said, Yes,
17 coffee is all right. And then he immediately asked that we summon
18 Krstic, Colonel Krstic. He was a colonel at the time. I called
19 Colonel Krstic and when he came they stood up, they said hello to
20 Colonel Krstic, they kissed, and then we sat down facing one another and
21 the talks started. President Karadzic asked, How long do you need to set
22 off for Srebrenica, and Krstic said then, Depending on the objective
23 preparations could take three to five days, and President Karadzic said,
24 Well, try to make that as short as possible, which we understood to mean
25 that as soon as the preparations were completed, that task needed to be
1 carried out. After that we spoke informally for a little bit with the
2 president and then I left the command building. Colonel Krstic saw the
3 president out, and then after seeing the president out Colonel Krstic
4 called me to his office and said that we should start planning the
6 This statement wasn't something you had when you were preparing
7 your report, was it, General?
8 A. No, no.
9 Q. It's very clear, isn't it, that President Karadzic's statements
10 about ordering the attack on Srebrenica weren't just propaganda, were
12 A. But that was not an order, not an order. An operation cannot be
13 carried out without an authorised order. It's one thing to start
14 planning, and it's another thing to approve the execution of an
15 operation. Therefore, neither Lazic nor Krstic were not supposed to
16 carry out this operation without any approval because that would cause
17 chaos in the army had they done that. It was possible that Karadzic's
18 assessment was that it could be done in that manner, but it's another
19 matter whether the conditions allow that to be done in that way and
20 whether the Main Staff agreed with that.
21 Now, as a military expert, if I'm looking at it, I think that
22 there must exist documents, written orders issued to subordinates that
23 would set in motion their activities. I never come across any such
24 documents. Therefore, it all seems to me to be just a kind of story that
25 has no operational strength, and that's why I understood it in the way I
2 Q. You think it's just a story with no operational strength when the
3 president of the republic, the Supreme Commander of the army, comes to
4 the Drina Corps and says -- tells Colonel Krstic, try and make your
5 preparations as short as possible, which they understood to mean as soon
6 as the preparations were completed, the task needed to be carried out.
7 You think that has no operational strength? That's your testimony as a
8 military expert?
9 A. I'm saying this as a military expert that a Supreme Commander
10 does not operate in that way. He has the subordinate Main Staff, and he
11 communicates with them. He might circumvent them, but if he does that he
12 has to inform the Main Staff, and if the Main Staff does not agree, then
13 the operation will not go ahead. This is my understanding as a military
14 expert. Whether the system was --
15 Q. [Overlapping speakers]
16 A. -- disrupted or not --
17 Q. It's very clear the Main Staff did agree with the attack on
18 Srebrenica, didn't they? General Mladic even turned up and led the entry
19 into town himself.
20 A. But I don't have an order from the Main Staff for the operation
21 to be carried out. Without such an order, the Drina Corps command could
22 not have carried out this operation.
23 Q. But they did carry out the operation, didn't they, General?
24 There's absolutely no question about that; right?
25 A. Yes. But not at the time when you said. The operation was
1 carried out after the 28th and the 26th when the 28th Division
2 incurred -- carried out incursions in Visnjica and killed everybody,
3 burned their houses and killed their cattle. There are documents in the
4 archives of the BH Army where they were commended for that operation.
5 That was the reason for this operation to go ahead, not a rift between
6 Karadzic and Krstic.
7 Q. General, let's move on.
8 MR. MITCHELL: Can I have Exhibit P4481 in e-court, page 3 in the
9 English, page 2 in the B/C/S.
10 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Probably you may have misunderstood
11 the question. Did you mention at the end of your answer rift between
12 Karadzic and Mladic, although it was not reflected as Krstic in the
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This rift existed throughout the
15 war, because a decision to set up an army resulted in duality of powers.
16 The commander of the Main Staff was practically promoted to the position
17 of Supreme Commander.
18 JUDGE KWON: But I don't think Mr. Mitchell's question had
19 anything to do with the alleged rift between Mr. Karadzic and
20 General Mladic. As suggested by Mr. Mitchell, the Krivaja 95 was
21 triggered by Mr. Karadzic's suggestion, and then Krstic or Zivanovic
22 informed the Main Staff, and with the approval of the Main Staff, if
23 Drina Corps prepared the Krivaja 95 and executed. There was no problem
24 at all. Do you agree with it?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I believe that Krivaja 95 was
1 carried out not because Karadzic came there and said this would be
2 something good to be done. Every commander thought and believed that
3 these enclaves should be separated because we were incurring losses. But
4 the operation followed the slaughter in the village of Visnjica after the
5 28th, and I think you can find that in the document. Sabotage groups
6 raided the lines behind Srebrenica and Zepa, notably the village of
7 Visnjica where about 40 people were killed. The rest of them fled. The
8 cattle was killed, and of course this operation had to be carried out,
9 but as a rule, the army made a whole lot of plans, and some of these
10 plans never materialised.
11 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Yes, please continue.
12 MR. MITCHELL:
13 Q. Okay. General, let's just be very clear. Directive 7 ordered
14 the Drina Corps to create an unbearable situation of total insecurity
15 with no hope of further life or survival for the inhabitants of
16 Srebrenica. That's in March. The Drina Corps, which you saw yesterday,
17 received this order and passed on the illegal language. The Main Staff
18 issued directive 7/1, which ordered planned combat battles and operations
19 around the Srebrenica enclave in accordance with directive 7. Then we
20 see on the 12th of May General Mladic issue another order --
21 A. But this sentence does not exist. There is no such sentence in
22 directive 7, the one that you are talking about. And according to the
23 sequence of execution, directive 7/1 is a means of operationalisation of
24 directive 7, and if an execution is to be made it's up to 7/1. One more
25 thing --
1 THE INTERPRETER: Can the witness please start and continue his
2 answer from the last --
3 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Radinovic, could you kindly repeat your answer
4 from the beginning.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said that in directive 7/1, there
6 is not this incriminating sentence that we are discussing that would
7 implicate and imply illegal actions. As a directive, that
8 operationalised directive 7, it was omitted. Directive 7/1 had a higher
9 degree of operationalisation than directive 7.
10 Secondly, Operation Krivaja 95, as stipulated in directive 7, was
11 envisaged not for the Drina Corps but for the Hercegovina Corps, and it
12 relates to completely different part of the battle-field which is the
13 Neretva valley. It has nothing to do with the Krivaja 95 operation.
14 MR. MITCHELL:
15 Q. General, earlier this morning I specifically asked you about
16 directive 7/1, and I asked you and said the whole point of a phrase like
17 "in accordance with directive 7" means you don't have to repeat the
18 entirety of the order. And this is what you said, this is at transcript
19 page 3:
20 "The previous order does not have to be repeated, and it doesn't
21 have to be that way verbatim, because general -- directive 7 is being
22 provided as a general document."
23 So you specifically agreed that the previous order doesn't need
24 to be repeated.
25 A. Yes, but --
1 Q. It's still in the background as a general document; right?
2 A. But please, directive 7/1 does not say this, and if it doesn't,
3 then in the executive document of the Drina Corps any action in
4 accordance with this sentence is not permissible. This is my comment.
5 Q. Okay. So under your theory, if President Karadzic issued an
6 order that says obey the Geneva Conventions and that doesn't get
7 specifically taken and repeated verbatim down the chain, it's like that
8 was never said. Is that your theory? As if President Karadzic had never
9 said it in the first place?
10 A. You are twisting the words. The point here is what is being done
11 with the sentence that have an indication of something illegal. If there
12 is a hint of any illegal action, those in charge must not carry them out,
13 and in directive 7/1 this sentence does not exist. The author of 7/1 did
14 things properly. The commander of the Drina Corps cannot invoke
15 directive 7/1, which does not contain the sentence in question, and as a
16 result it would be him committing an illegal act. That is my position.
17 Q. Well, General, I think directive 7/1 makes it very clear. It
18 says in accordance with directive 7, but I think we've exhausted this
19 topic, so we can move on.
20 Now, let's go to the 9th of July. Now, the objectives of
21 Krivaja 95 changed on the 9th of July when President Karadzic authorised
22 the VRS to take over the town itself; right?
23 A. He agreed to their proposal. It says approved by.
24 Q. [Overlapping speakers] Exactly, he approved it --
25 A. I don't know how it was translated into English. Not authorised
1 but approved.
2 Q. Okay. And his approval's required in his capacity as
3 Supreme Commander because there's a substantive change in the goals of
4 the operation; right?
5 A. Yes. This kind of alteration has to be endorsed because
6 otherwise it would be a deviation from what we called the strategic
7 concept and its implementation which is going beyond his powers. If the
8 army crosses that line, it is up to the Supreme Commander to react.
9 Q. So as a general proposition, you'd agree that a substantial
10 change in the objective of an operation required the approval of the
11 Supreme Commander as a general rule?
12 A. Only his consent is required for that to be done.
13 Q. Now, one of the goals of this operation was to create conditions
14 for the liberation of the enclave; right?
15 A. Yes. But do you know what that means in military terms? That
16 means to reach the features from which you can overrun the enclave should
17 the need for that arise but still it does not mean that the overrunning
18 would inevitably follow.
19 Q. But you'd agree that by the 9th of July when President Karadzic
20 approves the take-over of Srebrenica the conditions had been created. On
21 that date, on the 9th of July, the conditions are created for the
22 takeover, for the liberation of the enclave?
23 A. Based on Krstic's report and the information provided by Tolimir
24 to the forward command post of the Drina Corps at Pribicevac, one can
25 draw such a question.
1 Q. Let me ask you now about paragraph 360 of your report, what you
2 say: You can understand the wish of the local population to leave
3 because their troops had left and because of living conditions in the
4 town, to say nothing of the fear of revenge after the return of local
5 Serbs who had either fled or been expelled earlier. These are the
6 conditions that have been created on the 9th of July, aren't they? The
7 ABiH was militarily defeated. The living conditions in the town are
8 terrible, and the population's in fear, and by that point everybody knows
9 that UNPROFOR is unable to defend the enclave. They're the conditions
10 that exist on 9 July; right?
11 A. No. Those were not conditions mentioned in the report as the
12 conditions have been created for taking the enclaves. It means that
13 conditions were created to reach certain features that would provide
14 favourable tactical positions to continue activities towards the enclave.
15 That is what creating of conditions means. Whatever you said might be
16 true, but this is not part of that statement or this position that the
17 conditions are in place for taking over the enclave.
18 Q. Well, what I said was true, wasn't it General? You'd agree that
19 the conditions in the enclave were terrible. You said that in your
20 report; right?
21 A. Yes. Yes.
22 Q. And the population is fearful about what's going to happen to
24 A. Yes, of course they were fearful.
25 Q. [Overlapping speakers] And by the 9th of July, the ABiH, the
1 28th Division has all but been defeated.
2 A. Yes. They launched a counter-attack on the 10th but it was of
3 low intensity, and it was obviously a swan song of that struggle.
4 Q. And the first UNPROFOR DutchBat troops were taken into Bosnian
5 Serb custody, or they were guests, as they put it, of the Bosnian Serbs
6 as of the 8th of July; right?
7 A. [No interpretation]
8 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter didn't switch the microphone
10 "It's matter for discussion whether they were taken captive or
11 granted protection, but I'd sooner say that they were granted protection
12 other than kept in captivity.
13 MR. MITCHELL:
14 Q. But be that as it may, we can agree that whether they were taken
15 captive or granted protection, that happened on the 8th that the first
16 UNPROFOR troops were granted protection or taken captive by the
17 Bosnian Serbs; right?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Okay. General, when somebody flees their home, flees their land,
20 leaving all of their belongings behind because of terrible living
21 conditions out of fear, their army's been defeated, the UN can't defend
22 them, that's not a voluntary exercise at their will, is it, General?
23 A. It does constitute voluntary departure on the grounds that the
24 people involved believe that there aren't any conditions for them to live
25 there. I can't decide whether the departure was voluntary or not. This
1 is not within my profession. However, it was their decision ultimately
2 to leave the town and to move out to Potocari, to the UN base there.
3 At the time it was rational. It was reasonable. There was
4 sporadic fighting going on, and the fact that they all gathered on the
5 11th in Potocari was a rational thing to do. Nothing about it was
6 irrational. Now, how did it come about that they decide to -- decided to
7 resettle, never to come back, those of who were the local population, of
8 course. There were quite a few refugees there who had come from
9 elsewhere. Srebrenica was a small town, and the population that happened
10 to be there at the time constituted mostly of refugees who had come from
11 elsewhere. It was to be expected that these refugees would move out.
12 However, it was not expected that the Srebrenica inhabitants would move
13 out. Rather, conditions were to be put in place for them to return and
14 that's what Karadzic had in mind when he issued documents to authorities
15 and the police.
16 Q. But we can agree, just to shorten that a lot, we can agree on
17 11 July all the conditions were in place. It was rational. Those people
18 had really no other option at that point in time but to leave; right?
19 A. The down was not destroyed. There was very little damage,
20 meaning that the intensity of combat in town was very low. There was
21 little damage, and there were conditions in place for the population to
22 return. However, measures had to be taken to this effect. The decision
23 that the local population took was the path of least resistance, and I
24 think that was more than clear.
25 Q. Okay. So in your view those people could have been allowed to
1 return home; right? The people who all went to Potocari, they could have
2 all returned home?
3 A. All those who were Srebrenica natives could have gone back home
4 whether on the following day or when the damage was reconstructed, when
5 the authority was restored to town as well as the various public
6 services. But of course there were conditions. There were instances
7 where the population returned under circumstances that were far worse
8 than those in Srebrenica.
9 MR. MITCHELL: Could I have Exhibit P4254 in e-court.
10 Q. General, this is an intercepted conversation with General Mladic
11 as one of the interlocutors at 12.50 on the 12th of July. And you can
12 see here General Mladic says that:
13 "All capitulated and surrender and we'll evacuate them all, those
14 who want to and those who don't want to."
15 So, General, regardless of what the Muslim population wanted,
16 even if some of them had wanted to remain, this is the commander of the
17 VRS Main Staff saying they're all going to be moved down, even those who
18 want to stay. Those Muslims were never going to be able to stay in
19 Srebrenica, were they?
20 A. I think that they did have the possibility to remain there.
21 Subsequently you have the order issued by the president of the republic
22 to establish a civilian authority and the civilian police force and that
23 the population should be given the choice of deciding whether to stay or
24 leave, and the position taken was that some of the population would
25 return. Despite Mladic's fiery speech, some of the inhabitants --
1 Q. Let me stop you there.
2 A. -- were able to return. That was the position of the
3 Supreme Commander.
4 Q. First it's not a fiery speech. It's an intercepted conversation;
6 A. Well, one can give a fiery speech even in an intercept, in a
7 telephone conversation.
8 Q. Right. And General -- or President Karadzic's order that you're
9 referring to was issued on the night of the 11th, wasn't it? So this
10 conversation is after then?
11 A. Yes. Precisely because Karadzic's order has come before and the
12 authorities were established, there was absolutely a possibility for the
13 population to stay there. And this was something that was counted on
14 regardless of what Mladic might have said. There was the wish for the
15 population to stay there. However, it was the decision of the
16 inhabitants themselves to leave. All those who took part in the
17 decision-making process both in the United Nations and the civilian
18 population, they decided to leave. Of course, there was -- this was a
19 decision prompted by fear, uncertainty. That's all very well. But
20 simply put, it was their decision and their wish to leave. I'm not
21 saying that they were happy to leave, but this was simply a decision that
22 was theirs to make.
23 Q. Okay. You've talked about the fear and the living conditions
24 being part of the reason why they moved out. Let me put to you a
25 hypothetical. Is it still legitimate to move out those people where one
1 party has deliberately inflicted the conditions on that town, where one
2 party has created the fear, where one party has created the conditions,
3 is it still legitimate to then go in and offer buses to help those people
4 move out?
5 A. I will give a hypothetical answer to a hypothetical question.
6 The unbearable conditions were not only created by the
7 Army of Republika Srpska but also by their army which conducted
8 themselves the way they did. They prompted the reaction on the other
9 side. So they are both to blame.
10 Now, as to whether the departure was legitimate, this is not
11 within my expertise to decide on. I'm simply stating the fact as to who
12 took the decision to leave. That was the question that I asked myself.
13 I didn't ask myself whether it was legitimate to move people out when
14 conditions become unfavourable. This was not at the forefront of my
15 mind. I only came to the conclusion that they decided to leave. There
16 were quite a few reasons, of course, to leave, but there were also
17 reasons to return.
18 Q. And none of them were allowed to return, were they?
19 A. Well, it wasn't a matter of it not being allowed. They decided
20 to leave, so why would one proceed to forcibly bring people back?
21 Q. Just one more question on this topic and we'll move on.
22 Paragraph 130 of your report, General, you say: One almost gets an
23 impression that all of this had been planned in advance and carried out
24 in July 1995, and that the basic idea behind it was precisely the
25 above-quoted incriminatory sentence from directive 7, and that's the
1 sentence that we have seen earlier: By planned and well thought out
2 combat operations, create an unbearable situation of total insecurity
3 with no hope of further survival or life for the inhabitants of
5 So, General, you yourself are acknowledging that's what
6 directive 7 says and that's what actually happened in the operation -
7 right? - in the Krivaja 95 operation?
8 A. No. You either didn't understand what I said or you deliberately
9 chose not to understand it. I said as if it had materialised but, in
10 fact, I am denying it. I'm refuting it.
11 Q. The coincidence between what directive 7 says and what the
12 Krivaja 95 operation actually achieved. That's what you're doing there;
13 right? You're saying this is an extra other coincidence, but there's no
14 connection between the two. That's what you're saying; right?
15 A. No. What is being disregarded is that the departure was done as
16 a result of the wishes of UNPROFOR and the population. That's the only
17 thing I pointed out.
18 Q. Okay. Let's go on. Paragraph 377 of your report. I want to ask
19 you some questions about the separation of the men in Potocari. In
20 paragraph 377 you say that the act of separating men of military age in
21 order to check their identity was not illegitimate in any way, nor should
22 it raise any doubts as to its propriety.
23 Now, if these men were separated to check their identity, it's
24 obviously important to actually be able to identify them; right?
25 A. That's right.
1 Q. So stripping the Muslim men of their identification doesn't
2 actually make any sense if the aim of separating them was to identify
3 them, does it?
4 A. In this sort of screening documents are normally taken from
5 individuals to prevent them from fleeing. This is a preventative
6 measure. The point of the matter was that they had to be identified so
7 as to establish whether they took part in combat or not and whether they
8 were members of the 28th Division or civilians. That was the point of
9 what I said, that the separation was legitimate so long as that screening
10 had to be carried out.
11 Now, as soon as there was no screening anymore, that procedure
12 becomes illegal.
13 Q. Let me understand you. You're saying taking the men's
14 identification documents was a preventative measure to prevent them from
15 fleeing. That's your testimony?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. So you think that's legitimate to take all the identifications?
18 A. That was only temporary, until such time as checks are done to
19 see whether they are members of the army or not, at which point the
20 documents are returned.
21 Q. Let me ask again. So you're saying it's legitimate to take the
22 men's identifications from them.
23 A. It is necessary for purposes of identification to take IDs to
24 establish whether the persons are members of the army or not. When this
25 is established, the documents are returned.
1 Q. Well, this is what you said in the Krstic case when asked whether
2 it was legitimate to strip the men of their identifications. This is
3 Krstic transcript T8296. And of course I do not consider it to be
4 legitimate. I consider it to be a crime, and of course I cannot justify
5 it. That's what you said in that case.
6 A. This is a matter for a later date. At the point of separation
7 and screening, it is necessary to take the documents. It is necessary to
8 do so. However, when the process continued and the identification
9 documents were taken, this, of course, was illegitimate.
10 Q. General, there's no sense whatsoever to taking someone's
11 identification documents away from them if you're trying to identify
12 them. The only thing that makes sense why these documents were removed
13 was so that those prisoners could be killed; right?
14 A. I don't think that that's a condition, that this was a necessary
15 precondition to indicate that killings would ensue. Unfortunately, in
16 some cases killings did ensue, but the fact that the documents were taken
17 is not an indicator of it.
18 Q. In some cases, General? In all cases; right? All of those men
19 who were separated in Potocari.
20 A. I know. I know that they were all killed, but not all of them
21 were killed there. Not all of them were killed in Potocari.
22 Q. No. I'll ask you about that right now. At paragraph 380 of your
23 report, you say that the summary execution of the separated men of
24 military age could not be automatically predicted because most were
25 killed on 16 July 1995 in Branjevo rather than in Potocari or Bratunac
1 where the separation was made.
2 You would be aware of the evidence in this case that at least ten
3 men were executed in Potocari on 12 and 13 July?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. You're aware that approximately 50 Muslim men were executed in
6 and around the Vuk Karadzic school in Bratunac, and that started at
7 around 10.00 p.m. on the 12th of July, right in the middle of Bratunac?
8 A. I know that. I don't know if it's 50 or not, but I know that it
10 Q. And you of course know about the mass executions at Orahovac on
11 the 14th of July.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. You'd be aware that one of the survivors of the Orahovac
14 execution on the 14th was separated from his family in Potocari; right?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. So your statement that most of these separated men weren't killed
17 until the 16th at Branjevo is inaccurate, isn't it? There were quite a
18 lot who were killed much earlier, starting as early as the night of the
19 12th of July; right? Before the second day of separations had even
21 A. I merely noted the fact that not -- the majority of them were not
22 killed in Potocari but in other places, and in that context I mentioned
23 Branjevo where there were also military men who were killed.
24 Q. Military men or prisoners?
25 A. Able-bodied men too.
1 Q. The only people who were killed in Branjevo were prisoners,
2 General, right?
3 A. Well, there were. These were prisoners who had been taken from
4 Bratunac. And there were most certainly able-bodied men among them.
5 They were those who were in the school at Kula between the 14th and the
6 15th, and they were executed at Branjevo, and they had been taken to Kula
7 from Bratunac.
8 Q. Okay. Paragraph 413 of your report. You say that it was a
9 completely legitimate military security action to move the prisoners from
10 Bratunac to Zvornik. Let me read to you what you said in the Krstic case
11 on this very same issue when you were asked about the legitimacy of
12 sending prisoners to Zvornik, and this is T8081 in the Krstic case. You
14 "It is completely contrary to the military doctrine for several
15 reasons. Prisoners of war, in accordance with the principles of the
16 military doctrine are not held for a lengthy period of time in combat
17 zones but are sent to collection centres that are provided for that
18 purpose beforehand. The VRS had such a centre at the time. It was in
19 Bijeljina at Batkovic."
20 So that's almost the complete opposite of what is in your report,
21 isn't it, General? In your report here you say it's a completely
22 legitimate military security action. In Krstic you say it's completely
23 contrary to military doctrine. They're completely different, aren't
24 they, General?
25 A. I only said that holding prisoners for a long time outside of a
1 collection centre is illegitimate. However, the transfer from Bratunac
2 to places of protection was something that was the result of the order of
3 the Main Staff and the commander of the Drina Corps on the 13th of July,
4 that all prisoners should be put up in venues that are suitable for
5 guarding them. And this was the order of the Main Staff of the 14th and
6 the order of the commander of the Drina Corps which was identical to it.
7 Q. All right. Well, in your report you acknowledge Batkovici is an
8 ICRC supervised camp - right? - supervised by the Red Cross.
9 A. Well, officially it was a camp of the East Bosnia Corps, and
10 camps are organised as per the establishment of corps. So this is
11 something that is envisaged under the organisational structure of the
12 unit. It was under supervision. What the quality of supervision was, I
13 don't know, but definitely there was supervision --
14 Q. Supervision by the Red Cross.
15 A. -- because that was a -- no, well, it wasn't being supervised in
16 that sense by the Red Cross. They could have visited it.
17 Q. Maybe you want to look at paragraph 158 of your report. My
18 apologies, not 158, 421. You say: Batkovic, a prisoners of war camp
19 that was under ICRC supervision. That's all I'm asking. It was under
20 ICRC supervision; right?
21 A. Well, all right. It's -- not in the sense that the Red Cross was
22 there all the time to exercise control and supervision. Simply that it
23 kept an eye on it. That's the gist of it.
24 Q. Right. And this is an East Bosnia Corps purpose-built prisoner
25 of war camp; right?
1 A. That's where exchanges were conducted out of.
2 Q. All right. And Bijeljina where Batkovic is approximately 60
3 kilometres from Zvornik; right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Okay.
6 A. But Batkovic is not in Bijeljina. Rather, it's in the area of
7 responsibility of the East Bosnia Corps which was headquartered in
9 Q. All right. We can agree, General, obviously the prisoners should
10 have gone to Batkovic; right? Yes or no, the prisoners should have gone
11 to Batkovic?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And again yes or no, we can agree none of the prisoners that were
14 held in Bratunac on the 13th and 14th of July did go to Batkovic, did
16 A. No.
17 JUDGE KWON: No means you agree with Mr. Mitchell?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I confirm his negation.
19 JUDGE KWON: I see the time. Shall we have a break?
20 MR. MITCHELL: Yes, Mr. President. Thank you.
21 JUDGE KWON: We will resume at 11.00.
22 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
23 --- On resuming at 11.01 a.m.
24 JUDGE KWON: Please continue.
25 MR. MITCHELL: Thank you, Mr. President. Just this terms of
1 timing, I think I have about 40, 45 minutes left, certainly within the
2 hour, and Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff won't have anything after I'm finished, so
3 we should be done --
4 JUDGE KWON: Forty minutes left out of how many hours?
5 MR. MITCHELL: We had a total of five hours, Mr. President. I
6 think we have about ten minutes of that. So I'd be asking to go over by,
7 I think, 30 to 40 minutes over our estimate.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE KWON: The Chamber will allow you additional 30 minutes.
10 Please continue.
11 MR. MITCHELL: Thank you, Mr. President.
12 Q. General, just before the break we agreed that the prisoners in
13 Bratunac should have gone to Batkovic, but they didn't go to Batkovic. I
14 want to ask you some questions now about why they were taken to Zvornik
16 The Muslim column that headed -- that left Srebrenica on the 11th
17 was heading into Zvornik territory on the 13th, 14th, 15th, and
18 16th of July, wasn't it? This is the military column.
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And by the 15th of July, the Zvornik Brigade was so desperate for
21 reinforcements that they had to pull Vinko Pandurevic and his units out
22 of Zepa and send them back to the Zvornik Brigade area; right?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And MUP units and Bratunac Brigade units were also sent up to
25 Zvornik to help fight the column.
1 A. Yes, but the Bratunac Brigade came somewhat later, was a bit
3 Q. So we can agree that the prisoners weren't moved to the Zvornik
4 area because the VRS had lots of spare resources up there; right?
5 A. No. On orders from the Main Staff and the commander of the
6 Drina Corps on the 13th of July -- actually, it was ordered that all
7 prisoners should be transported immediately to facilities where it would
8 be easy to guard them, and the only facilities where it would be easy to
9 guard them until they would be taken to Batkovic were the schools in the
10 area of responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade, that is Grbavci, Rocevici,
11 Petkovci, Kula, the cultural centre in Pilica, et cetera. Those were the
12 facilities where they could be guarded, but that is en route to
13 Batkovici. That is not outside that area or direction.
14 Q. Right. Well -- so you're saying it's pursuant to a Main Staff
15 and a Drina Corps order. In the Krstic case, at transcript 8081, you
17 "It cannot be conceived why the prisoners of war at the time of
18 the most intense fighting in the area of responsibility of the
19 Zvornik Brigade were collected, were gathered in the area of
20 responsibility of that brigade."
21 So in your own words it can't even be conceived why it was done
22 at this time of intense combat of the Zvornik -- of the Zvornik Brigade;
24 A. That time could not be avoided. You see, the order is on the
25 13th, and they were being put up on the 14th and 15th. So no other time
1 could be found. And that is indeed the time when fighting culminated in
2 the area of the Zvornik Brigade. However, the fighting on the approaches
3 to Nezuk, well, that's where the fighting took place, so that is outside
4 the area of immediate fighting.
5 Q. Well, the weather in Bosnia in the middle of July is very hot,
6 isn't it?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And you know the evidence that the school gyms were overcrowded
9 with prisoners. That men were forced in sit in each other's laps.
10 A. The schools indeed had limited capacity, gyms, classrooms, so the
11 capacity is limited.
12 Q. Right. And they didn't just have limited capacity. They had no
13 food for the prisoners, did they?
14 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters did not understand the witness
15 or hear him.
16 MR. MITCHELL:
17 Q. General, if you could just repeat your answer. My question was
18 the schools had no food for the prisoners; right?
19 A. No. I wasn't saying anything then. I said that the classrooms
20 and gyms were overcrowded, and possibly they could have been put up in
22 Q. Okay. In addition to the overcrowding, there was no food for
23 those prisoners, was there?
24 A. Well, as far as I know, bread and water were being brought --
25 Q. [Overlapping speakers] That's Potocari, General.
1 A. Whether there was enough, that is --
2 Q. That's Potocari. We're talking about the schools in Zvornik.
3 A. I think that in Kula it was bread that was being brought. I'm
4 not sure, but I think so. However, that is certainly not sufficient. We
5 can agree that there wasn't enough food.
6 Q. Well, if these prisoners were put there, as you say, pursuant to
7 a Main Staff and a Drina Corps order wouldn't you expect to see a train
8 of logistics documents preparing for the reception of these prisoners in
9 these facilities in Zvornik, food, water, medical care, and notification
10 to the ICRC that all these prisoners are being taken there? That's what
11 you'd expect to see; right?
12 A. We wouldn't expect -- or rather, we would expect if this were a
13 timely action. However, since [Realtime transcript read in
14 error "civilian"] the massive taking of prisoners surprised everyone
15 totally, including UNPROFOR and the Main Staff and the Drina Corps, so no
16 one expected that. No one expected the fall of Srebrenica, the moving
17 out of the population, the massive taking of prisoners, and that was a
18 total surprise. Everything that was done was done on a temporary basis
19 to put them up temporarily at facilities where they could be guarded
20 easily so that they could be taken to Batkovic as soon as possible.
21 That's what it looked like, but that is not what actually happened.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Transcript.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In line 7, the general said since
25 massive taking of prisoners happened suddenly, "civilians," it says. He
1 did not mention civilians at all.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note: We did not say civilians.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Something seems to be wrong there.
4 JUDGE KWON: Line 7?
5 MR. MITCHELL: I think line 10, Mr. President. I think the word
6 "civilian" was interpreted as "since." I think that makes sense.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That seems to be correct. Shall we continue.
8 MR. MITCHELL:
9 Q. General, you're saying now this was done on a temporary basis to
10 put them up temporarily at facilities where they could be guarded so they
11 can be taken to Batkovic. Batkovic as we have discussed is an
12 ICRC-supervised camp. It's about 60 kilometres more further up the road
13 from Zvornik. It's a specialised prisoner of war camp. Those prisoners
14 were already on buses. Why on earth when they got to Zvornik didn't they
15 just keep going straight to the purpose-built prisoner of war camp
16 instead of turning off into remote villages in the Zvornik area? Moving
17 those prisoners to Zvornik was not putting them temporarily there to move
18 them to Batkovic afterwards, was it?
19 A. I think, yes, I think that this is a place where they were put up
20 temporarily and where civilians were supposed to be separated from
21 soldiers. As we know, the column that was moving in order to break
22 through, it was mixed. It wasn't only military men but there were also
23 civilians who were of military age, men. So the separation had to take
24 place. The civilians were supposed to be returned to Muslim-controlled
25 territory and prisoners of war were supposed to be taken to Batkovic or
1 Batkovic, or whatever. All of that was fine. However, unfortunately
2 that was not done and from then onwards it turned into a crime and
3 there's nothing more to be said.
4 Q. Let me ask you one other thing. You haven't seen any other
5 documents, 13, 14, 15, 16 July from the army or the MUP making
6 arrangements for a front line exchange of these prisoners, have you?
7 A. No.
8 Q. Right.
9 A. I saw reports, combat reports from the commander of the
10 Zvornik Brigade. That I did see from the 15th to the 18th, and it says
11 there are prisoners there.
12 Q. But there's nothing about a front line exchange, is there?
13 There's no preparations whatsoever being made for a front line exchange?
14 A. No. There locally, no, but whether that was being prepared in
15 Batkovic, I really do not know. There's another fact there that should
16 be taken into account. On the 16th of July, the commander of the
17 Zvornik Brigade opened the front for the column to pass through and on
18 the 17th it was open. That shows that the intention was not to destroy
19 everything, because that column could have been destroyed, but no, over
20 2.500 people were saved.
21 Q. Let me stop you there. The commander of the Zvornik Brigade
22 didn't let anyone go from the schools that were in his area of
23 responsibility, did he? They were all killed.
24 A. The commander of the Zvornik Brigade was not in charge of these
25 facilities because this operation was conducted by the Main Staff or,
1 rather, the security sector, and the commander of the Zvornik Brigade was
2 not even asked about these prisoners. What was up to him, I mean he let
3 them go. He opened the front line, and he let this column go through,
4 the column that was moving from Potocari -- or, rather, from Susnjari and
5 Jaglic, and in that way he saved 2.650 persons. They could have been
6 destroyed too. Fortunately they were not.
7 Q. Well, General, I don't want to spend time getting on -- getting
8 into what Vinko Pandurevic did and didn't know on the 15th and
9 16th of July. You're aware of the evidence in this case about the
10 meeting in Bratunac on the evening of 13 July, are you, between
11 Colonel Beara from the VRS, Dragomir Vasic from the MUP, and
12 Miroslav Deronjic, who is the civilian commissioner personally appointed
13 by President Karadzic. You know about that meeting?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. You know the evidence is that the killing of prisoners was openly
16 discussed at that meeting, and the only disagreement between the
17 representative of the army, the representative of the police, and
18 President Karadzic's hand-picked civilian commissioner was not whether
19 the prisoners should be killed but where they should be killed. And the
20 president's hand-picked civilian commissioner, Miroslav Deronjic,
21 insisted that the prisoners not be killed in Bratunac. And this is the
22 evidence in this case. He said:
23 "I have received instructions from President Karadzic according
24 to which the prisoners in Bratunac should be transferred to Zvornik."
25 And that's exactly what happened, isn't it? Those prisoners were
1 transferred from Bratunac to Zvornik. They were transported by the VRS
2 and the MUP, and they were executed, and they were buried in the Zvornik
3 area over the next few days; right? That's why these prisoners were
4 moved to the Zvornik area, to be killed.
5 A. Please, when you ask me whether I heard about meeting where this
6 was discussed I thought that you were talking about meetings that
7 General Mladic had with Karremans and the representatives of the Muslim
8 civilians and where Deronjic was present.
9 Q. Let me stop you there, General.
10 A. I do did not know --
11 Q. It was very clear. My question was: Do you know about the
12 meeting between Colonel Beara from the VRS, Dragomir Vasic, and
13 Miroslav Deronjic, and you said yes. How did you confuse that with
14 General Mladic's meeting with UNPROFOR?
15 JUDGE KWON: There may be a gap in interpretation. Let him
17 MR. MITCHELL: Yes, Mr. President.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Please, as for this meeting where
19 killing was discussed, I never knew anything about that. To this day I
20 don't know anything about that. I only know about the meeting that was
21 held in Bratunac at the Fontana Hotel that was held by General Mladic
22 together with the representatives of UNPROFOR, part of his own officers,
23 and this other meeting with the representatives of the civilians. No
24 killing. I did not have any information about any killings. I do
25 apologise for having made this mistake. I rushed into saying something,
1 but I thought that you were talking about the meetings in Bratunac at the
2 Fontana Hotel.
3 MR. MITCHELL:
4 Q. Let me put my question to you again, General. The fate of these
5 prisoners was decided long before they ever left Bratunac. They were
6 taken to Zvornik for one purpose and one purpose only: They were taken
7 there to be killed, weren't they?
8 A. No. I do not agree with that. Those who took them and who took
9 part in that did not know that they would be killed. Those who led the
10 operation may have known. But I would like to caution about one thing.
11 An order of General Tolimir, information, offering accommodation for 800
12 prisoners on the evening of the 13th of July. So on the 13th of July,
13 the most important person in the Main Staff as far as prisoners of war
14 are concerned does not know that they are going to be killed and is
15 offering accommodation in Rogatica. I don't know how juniors could have
16 known, his juniors. At that time they certainly did not know.
17 Q. Well, Miroslav Deronjic knew, didn't he?
18 A. I don't know whether Miroslav Deronjic knew, but these people
19 from the army who escorted them, these prisoners of war, they certainly
20 did not know.
21 Q. Well, don't you say in your report that they're escorted by the
22 MUP? Dragomir Vasic from the MUP knew that those people were being taken
23 to Zvornik to be killed.
24 A. Dragomir Vasic was not escorting them. Policemen escorted them,
25 not Dragomir Vasic. Why would he have to know?
1 Q. Dragomir Vasic is the chief of the Zvornik CJB. He's the head
2 policeman in the area. Of course he would know if his police were moving
3 prisoners to Zvornik; right? He'd have to know.
4 A. Yes, but the police who were escorting them did not know. The
5 police who were escorting them did not know. The officers who took part
6 in that did not know.
7 Q. Okay. But let me ask you again. Dragomir Vasic who was at the
8 meeting in Bratunac, he knew, didn't he?
9 A. How do I know whether he knew when I don't know of this meeting
10 that you are talking about?
11 Q. Okay. Could you look at paragraph 130 of your report, General.
12 You refer to the Srebrenica men being captured and allegedly executed.
13 If you take a close look at footnote number 79 where you say that the
14 execution of the prisoners was not part of Dr. Karadzic's control
15 authority. The prisoners were dealt with by operational commands on the
16 ground and the Main Staff of the VRS as the supreme operational command
17 of the army, and the situation reports that Dr. Karadzic --
18 A. I have no interpretation.
19 JUDGE KWON: If you could repeat.
20 MR. MITCHELL: Certainly.
21 Q. General, can you see footnote 79 there?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Okay. And you say:
24 "The situation reports that Dr. Karadzic received from the VRS
25 Main Staff did not contain any information about the execution of
1 prisoners of war as a result of which this potential crime cannot be
2 deemed part of Dr. Radovan Karadzic's control authority."
3 Now, you're not suggesting that the VRS Main Staff daily
4 situation report is the only source of information that the president of
5 the republic has, are you?
6 A. I claim that as for the line of military command and control he
7 did not have any information about that.
8 Q. But you'd agree that he could receive that information from his
9 hand-picked civilian commissioner, Miroslav Deronjic; right?
10 A. He could have, but I don't know about that. I did not receive
11 information to that effect.
12 Q. And you'd agree that he could receive that information from
13 Tomo Kovac, the deputy minister of interior; right?
14 A. He could have, could have, but I don't have that information
16 Q. Now, you said earlier that the VRS security organs are the prime
17 unit of the army who deal with prisoners; right?
18 A. That is their professional responsibility.
19 Q. So it makes sense that if anybody is going to be reporting on the
20 prisoners it would be them; right? It would be the security organs.
21 A. But reporting follows the chain of command. A security officer
22 cannot report directly to the Supreme Commander. Information gathers at
23 the Main Staff, and then it's the Main Staff that sends a single report
24 to the Supreme Command.
25 Q. So I take it, General, you're not aware that every day during the
1 Srebrenica operation President Karadzic received a written report
2 directly from the VRS Main Staff security organ, that went directly to
3 him? You're not aware of those reports?
4 A. No.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we have reference?
6 MR. MITCHELL: Yes. P2989. It's the log-book, Pale log-book
7 that shows every day President Karadzic got a report from the Main Staff
8 security organ.
9 Q. So I take it, General, you're not aware that when the OTP went to
10 inspect the presidential archive these VRS security organ reports to
11 President Karadzic were among the documents that were missing from that
13 A. I am telling you that I absolutely had no insight into these
14 presidential archives because that was not submitted to me. What is
15 contained therein I'm not aware of.
16 Q. So you, Mr. Karadzic's military expert, have never seen the daily
17 security organ reports to the president during the Srebrenica operation?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Well, General, our case is in July 1995, there's only one
20 individual sitting at the top of the three branches of government that
21 were carrying out the Srebrenica operation: The VRS, the MUP, and the
22 civilian authorities. On the 13th, 14th, and 15th of July,
23 President Karadzic was talking or meeting with a representative from each
24 of those branches, Miroslav Deronjic, Tomo Kovac, he spoke to the phone
25 to General Mladic on the 13th of July, and he also received a report
1 every day from the security organs that neither you nor the
2 Office of the Prosecutor has ever seen. So is it still your view that
3 President Karadzic's responsibility as Supreme Commander isn't engaged
4 with Srebrenica purely because the daily situation reports don't contain
5 reports of the killings? That's your expert military opinion?
6 A. You're simplifying the answer and reducing it. Operation
7 Srebrenica was not an operation that had to be approved and supervised by
8 the Supreme Commander. It is not an operation of a lower level, and it
9 is supervised by the corps and the Main Staff. President Karadzic is the
10 Supreme Commander. He reacts only in terms of those powers that belong
11 to the Supreme Command. When the operational objective of Srebrenica was
12 changed, he agreed that Srebrenica be entered. When civilian government
13 was supposed to be established, he did that. When the police was
14 supposed to be established, he issued an order to establish the police.
15 And everything that pertains to a specific situation is what he receives
16 through combat reports.
17 Now, whether these combat reports were done up or whether they
18 were full, I really cannot assess. And I did not have any other facts to
19 work on when compiling this report but on the basis of the information
20 that was provided to me. I did not have the information that you are
21 referring to now.
22 Q. Thank you, General. Yesterday, or the first day of your
23 testimony at transcript 41435, you testified that the media mainly
24 reported about executions of men and boys, but it was never emphasised
25 that those were prisoners of war. Mr. Karadzic also asked you about the
1 locations that were mentioned in media reporting, and you said that there
2 was mention of executions in Srebrenica which was not case. I want to
3 show you a couple of media reports, the first one from the 21st of
4 July -- sorry, the 17th of July on P4397. This is a media report
5 published in "The Independent" in London.
6 You'll see 17 July. This is describing what the reporter says
7 looked more like a place of summary execution than of combat. He had
8 seen footage that was aired on Serb TV, and he says:
9 "The footage of bodies appears to support the testimony of
10 refugees from Srebrenica who claim they saw men dragged away by Serb
11 soldiers, heard gunshots and later saw bodies against walls or in ditches
12 along the roadside."
13 He then goes on to say -- the author goes on to say:
14 "The fate of the menfolk of Srebrenica has been a concern to
15 their family and international human rights since the enclave fell last
16 Tuesday. A delegation of the ICRC was prohibited again yesterday from
17 visiting Bratunac, the town in Srebrenica where many of the captured men
18 are believed to be held."
19 So that's the 17th of July. The media in London is already
20 reporting concerns that many captured Muslim men aren't being allowed to
21 be visited by the ICRC.
22 Then if we go to another article, P4398. This is now the
23 21st of July. And again it's "The Independent" in London, and the report
24 starts off:
25 "Just across the Drina River from the sleepy Serbian town of
1 Ljubovija a slaughter is said to be taking place, possibly the biggest
2 mass execution of Muslim prisoners by the Bosnian Serbs in more than
3 three years."
4 So that's what the media in London knows. The specific reference
5 to Muslim prisoners of war isn't it? And yet you testify that it was
6 never emphasised that these were prisoners of war.
7 A. I'm speaking about our media, not "The Independent" and other
8 foreign media.
9 Q. Right. So the international media in London, by the 21st of
10 July, was reporting about the possible biggest mass execution of Muslim
11 prisoners in the whole war, and the local media knew nothing about it.
12 A. That was a time of relentless propaganda so it is very hard to
13 believe everything that was written. If such a report was accurate it
14 was shocking, but you know that the media liked to add ingredients to
15 their stories, and if you repeat one thing on a daily basis, one starts
16 to believe that. I was an ordinary citizen, and I followed that as an
17 ordinary citizen, and unfortunately I knew nothing about it.
18 Q. General, when at any other point in the war did you ever hear a
19 rumour or propaganda about 4.000 prisoners of war being executed? When
20 did you ever hear that at any other point in the war?
21 A. No, I never heard of that.
22 Q. You're not -- you're an expert witness, General. You're not
23 seriously suggesting that the international media in London knows more
24 about what was happening in Eastern Bosnia than the president of the
25 republic who sat at the top of the army, the police, and the civilian
1 authorities who were working hand-in-hand to execute and bury these
2 prisoners? That's not your expert testimony, is it?
3 A. Let me just tell you how the president of the republic, i.e., the
4 Supreme Commander, executed his command role. That was done by
5 personal --
6 Q. General --
7 A. -- insight or through information.
8 Q. General, let me stop you there. I don't want a long explanation
9 of his command role. I'm just asking are you seriously suggesting that
10 the international media knew more about what was going on in
11 Eastern Bosnia than the president of the republic?
12 A. Well, your people were filming that, and they knew better the
13 situation, and they were able to know at every point in time what exactly
14 was happening. The question is why didn't they prevent it?
15 Q. Well, I think when you say "your people were filming that," it
16 was Zoran Petrovic, a Serb journalist, embedded in a Serb MUP unit who
17 filmed that, wasn't it?
18 A. He was filming the taking of prisoners, not the killings. He was
19 travel around the Bratunac-Konjevic Polje road and was filming the
20 surrender of the people in the column, as far as I can remember the
21 footage. He might have some other footage of which I'm not aware.
22 Q. You're aware of the footage of the Kravica warehouse on the
23 afternoon of 13 July, aren't you, the bodies piled up in front of the
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And that was taken by Zoran Petrovic, a Serb cameraman embedded
2 in a Bosnian Serb MUP unit.
3 A. That was on the Bratunac-Konjevic Polje road. As for the filming
4 in the area of Zvornik Brigade, I know nothing about that.
5 Q. One -- one final area, General. Paragraph 427 of your report.
6 This is Exhibit D3864. It's 161 in the English and 186 in the B/C/S.
7 You'll see in this paragraph, General, you say that Mr. Karadzic
8 did not know that there was no fighting against the Muslim forces in the
9 Pilica area. And this is in the context of his report on the
10 23rd of March, 1996. So let me turn that around. If he doesn't know
11 that there was no fighting, he doesn't know that there was fighting
12 either; right? He doesn't know either way.
13 A. No. He knew that there were activities in the general area, but
14 he didn't know specifically about Pilica. He couldn't have known that,
15 because there were actually no operations there.
16 Q. That's my point. He didn't know that there was any fighting
17 there; right? Specifically in Pilica, he didn't know that there was any
19 A. No. He thought that there was fighting, but by way of his order
20 he just demonstrated that he actually didn't know. That was a locality
21 in the area of responsibility of the 1st Battalion of the
22 Zvornik Brigade, and therefore he was supposed to know that.
23 Q. General, let's get this very clear. You say he did not know that
24 there was no fighting in your report. So --
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. He doesn't know for sure that there was fighting, did he? He
2 just doesn't know either way.
3 A. But one can deduce from the order that he thought that there was
4 fighting. If you look at this document, it seems that he believed there
5 were operations there. The best way would possibly be to look at the
6 document so that we can confirm that he was convinced that there was
7 fighting there.
8 Q. Let me show you another document. This is Exhibit P1490. If we
9 can have page 47 in the English and 44 in the B/C/S. General, what
10 you're going to see here are General Mladic's notes of a conversation
11 that he had with President Karadzic on the 22nd of March. So that's the
12 day before President Karadzic issued this order to investigate armed
13 conflict in Pilica.
14 You can see at the top point President Karadzic is recorded as
15 saying: A big show was put on for Albright. She expected they would
16 find 1.200 Muslim bodies at Pilica but they found some five bodies.
17 And then the third bullet point down says: Fico was here last
18 night and he says those two will sell their story about Srebrenica to
19 The Hague.
20 General, you know who Drazen Erdemovic is, don't you?
21 A. Yes, I do.
22 Q. And you know that Drazen Erdemovic was addressed in March 1996 in
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And he was arrested with one other person, Radislav Kremenovic?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Let me show you 65 ter 25423.
3 What you're going to see, General, is an article published by
4 "Slobodna Bosna" on the 22nd of March, 1996. So this is the same day as
5 President Karadzic's meeting with General Mladic and the day before the
6 order to investigate armed conflict in Pilica. What you're seeing here
7 is an interview with Drazen Erdemovic. If we go over to the next page in
8 English, we'll see at the very top Erdemovic -- Erdemovic, a story about
9 killing 1.200 Muslim civilians at Pilica in July 1995 at a farm in
10 Pilica. So 22nd of March, 1996, Erdemovic's story gets published in your
11 local press; right? This is not international media. This is Serb
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have a reference confirming
14 that "Slobodna Bosna" is a Serb media outlet? Where was it published at
15 the time?
16 JUDGE KWON: No, that's not a proper intervention. You can ask
17 it in your re-examination, Mr. Karadzic.
18 Shall we continue. You're coming to a close.
19 MR. MITCHELL: Very close, Mr. President.
20 Q. General, you'd agree that Drazen Erdemovic's interview on the
21 22nd of March where he says -- or talks about killing 1.200 Muslim
22 civilians at Pilica is quite clearly what President Karadzic and
23 General Mladic were talking about in their meeting where
24 President Karadzic said Albright expected they would find 1.200 Muslim
25 bodies at Pilica. They're obviously talking about the same thing; right?
1 The story that Erdemovic had told about the 1.200 Muslims being killed.
2 A. Yes, yes, but --
3 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat his answer from
4 the beginning. We couldn't understand it.
5 JUDGE KWON: Could you repeat your answer from the beginning.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Karadzic is saying this indeed, but
7 he was considered this to be a propaganda stunt and that that number of
8 dead bodies would not be found, hence he ordered a commission to be
9 formed, made up of representatives of the MUP, the Main Staff, and the
10 IFOR. And he wanted to once and for all suppress Albright's propaganda
11 about the massacres and dead bodies. Do you really think that he would
12 go as far to establish a commission if he knew that that would be
13 established as a fact on the spot? I really cannot suppose and even
14 think possible if Karadzic would act with such a high degree of
16 MR. MITCHELL:
17 Q. Well, General, we've seen evidence in this case - this is
18 Exhibit 4487 - that the 10th Sabotage Detachment, which Drazen Erdemovic
19 was a member of, was the VRS's first professional unit. Erdemovic was a
20 professional VRS soldier. His contract, which is in evidence here was
21 personally signed by General Mladic, and he was given an exceptional
22 promotion after the Srebrenica operation. So here is a decorated
23 professional VRS soldier making a public statement about having
24 participated in the execution of 1.200 Muslim civilians. And despite
25 having this information on the 22nd of March, the next day
1 President Karadzic issues an order specifically saying investigate armed
2 conflict in the Pilica area.
3 Now, this is quite clearly a deliberate attempt to cover up the
4 killings in Pilica, isn't it? He's trying to get a cover story out there
5 that we all have to say this is armed conflict. That's what the 23 March
6 order is; isn't it?
7 A. On the contrary. On the contrary. He's issuing an order to
8 investigate the allegations and to determine whether really dead bodies
9 came to the surface or whether it was propaganda. Based on that, I
10 concluded that he didn't know about it. If he knew about it, he wouldn't
11 bring in IFOR and the MUP and Main Staff. He wouldn't have set up the
12 commission and expect the commission to produce findings.
13 Q. And in that order, if you look back at your report which you
14 quote there, President Karadzic says: Follow the same procedure in other
15 similar cases. This was at paragraph 425 of your report, General.
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. You see that there where President Karadzic says follow the same
18 procedure in other similar cases. The only other cases remotely similar
19 to Pilica were Kravica, Orahovac, Petkovci, and Kozluk; right?
20 A. I don't think that this refers to this case. If we are talking
21 about investigations and setting up commissions, then the presumption is
22 that commissions had been formed in the preceding period and that they
23 were expected to operate in the same manner. This is how I understand
25 Q. Last question, General. You agreed earlier today at page 18 that
1 President Karadzic in his capacity of Supreme Commander had to authorise
2 the taking of Srebrenica because it was a substantive change --
3 JUDGE KWON: We are overhearing something. Mr. Mitchell, could
4 you repeat your question.
5 MR. MITCHELL: Yes, Mr. President.
6 Q. You agreed earlier today that President Karadzic in his capacity
7 of Supreme Commander had to authorise the taking of Srebrenica because it
8 was a substantive change in the objective of Krivaja 95. You remember
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Just answer yes or no to the next question if you can: The
12 decision to execute thousands of Muslim prisoners captured after the fall
13 of Srebrenica, that's also a substantive change in the objective of the
14 Krivaja 95 operation, wasn't it?
15 A. No. No. I can't give you a yes or no answer to this question.
16 It's so leading that I cannot give you the answer as you wish. It's not
17 one and the same thing to approve the expansion of an operational plan on
18 the grounds of professional and military reasons to take control of
19 certain area as opposed to an order to execute prisoners. The former
20 order exists, and the latter does not exist. Therefore, I cannot give
21 you such a simple answer to your question.
22 MR. MITCHELL: Nothing further, Mr. President.
23 Thank you, General.
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
1 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
2 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, General.
3 A. Good morning.
4 Q. Let us please pause between questions and answers. We need to be
5 mindful of that.
6 General, let us start with the most recent question put to you
7 about the fate of the POWs following the fall of Srebrenica. Did you
8 know and did you establish within whose scope of responsibility and at
9 what level the care and exchange of prisoners existed on the Serbian
11 A. Yes, the exchange of prisoners on the Serbian side was executed
12 from the grass root levels to the very top leadership of the army.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we please now have 1D25242.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Unfortunately, we don't have a translation yet, but I would
16 kindly ask you to briefly read a portion and tell us what this document
18 A. Can this please be zoomed in. Command of the Drina Corps,
19 10th July 1995, Government of Republika Srpska, State Commission for
20 exchange of prisoners of war, reference to a certain document, and then
21 the text:
22 "Due to active combat operations carried out by the enemy on all
23 front lines in the area of responsibility of the Sarajevo Romanija and
24 Drina Corps and since the Muslim offensive is still ongoing we believe
25 that negotiations about the exchange of POWs with the Muslim side should
1 be conducted after the cessation of hostile activities. Due to that, the
2 representatives of the commission for the exchange of the Drina Corps
3 shall not attend the meeting convened for 11th of July in Kiseljak,"
4 signed Milenko Zivanovic.
5 Q. Thank you. General, what do you think about the possibility of
6 an exchange of prisoners in the middle of an offensive?
7 A. Well, that's not possible. It's impossible to achieve due to
8 security reasons.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this please be MFI'd.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 THE REGISTRAR: MFI D3865, Your Honours.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now please have 1D25243.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Unfortunately this has not yet been translated.
15 A. Is this the same document?
16 Q. No, no, no. It's a new document. Can you identify it, who is
17 the author, and the date?
18 A. The command of the Drina Corps, exchange of POW --
19 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please read a little bit more
20 slowly. Thank you.
21 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Radinovic.
22 THE WITNESS: Yeah.
23 JUDGE KWON: Could you start over again and read very slowly,
25 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. That's done, General, I think. Now the text.
2 A. "Since the establishment of contact and the conduct of
3 negotiations on exchanges of prisoners of war is under the commission for
4 exchanges of POWs of the Drina Corps, we agree with the position that you
5 presented in your document.
6 "Therefore, if there is a call and if the Muslim side insists
7 via radio communications to establish contact regarding exchanges of
8 prisoners of war, communicate to them that they can -- that a contact can
9 be agreed only between the president of the commission of the district of
10 Tuzla and the president of the commission of the Drina Corps.
11 "The commission for the exchange of POWs with the Drina Corps
12 shall agree on a meeting with the Muslim side in order to negotiate on
13 the exchange with the agreement of the Main Staff of the VRS until a
14 favourable situation occurs and information is -- and information that is
15 indispensable for talks is accumulated."
16 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: That is the end of the
17 text. We did not hear what the General after that. It was too fast.
18 Thank you.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Can you repeat who signed this, because the interpreters didn't
21 hear that.
22 A. Commander Major-General Radislav Krstic, but someone signed for
23 him, for him. Somebody was probably authorised to do that.
24 Q. Thank you. Is there anything unusual in this text that would
25 indicate that this text was taking place during exchanges -- or talks on
2 A. There is nothing unnatural here.
3 Q. It was not interpreted beforehand who this was sent to.
4 A. The corps commander is sending this to the 1st Zvornik Brigade.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can this be marked for
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Mitchell.
8 MR. MITCHELL: No objection to it being marked for
9 identification, but perhaps the General's attention could be drawn to the
10 date of the document as well.
11 JUDGE KWON: I didn't follow you, Mr. Mitchell. Mr. Karadzic
12 referred to the date, didn't he?
13 MR. MITCHELL: If he did, then I'll withdraw my objection.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Could we now --
15 JUDGE KWON: Probably that maybe I read that myself. Thank you.
16 Shall we continue.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Is the Drina Corps in charge of exchanging prisoners that they
19 had taken prisoner themselves? Is this something that comes out of this
21 A. The Drina Corps is authorised for the exchange of prisoners of
22 war for as long as they are in its area of responsibility. At the moment
23 when the POWs go to Batkovici, then the exchange of POWs is raised to a
24 higher level.
25 Q. Thank you. Can we have this document admitted for
2 JUDGE KWON: First shall we assign a number for the previous
4 THE REGISTRAR: 1D25243 will be MFI D3866.
5 JUDGE KWON: And ...
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] So we have two admitted ones;
8 JUDGE KWON: Just a second now. But, General, this was dated
9 21st of July. You agree?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I said that in my answer.
11 The last sentence had to do with the date.
12 JUDGE KWON: Very well. We'll mark it for identification.
13 THE REGISTRAR: MFI D3866, Your Honours.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. 1D25244. Could we
15 please take a look at that now. I believe that there is a translation,
16 so could we have both versions. Yes, we have the Serb version.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. While we're waiting for the English one could you please take a
20 look at who is writing this and to whom.
21 A. It's the State Commission for the exchange of prisoners of war of
22 the Government of Republika Srpska that is writing this document. And
23 they're writing to commissions to the exchange of prisoners of war of
24 various corps. They are receiving this information, commission for the
25 exchange of POWs of the 1st Corps, the 2nd Corps, the IBK.
1 Q. Thank you, you don't have to read out all of this. Could we have
2 this just by way of a summary. What are they looking for?
3 A. The subject is gathering information. Considering the current
4 situation concerning the -- is this Croatia aggression against the area
5 of the Republic of Serb Krajina? It will be necessary to participate
6 actively in the forthcoming period and gathering information about
7 missing, dead, and captured soldiers and civilians from the area of the
8 Republic of Serb Krajina in addition to our regular activities and task.
9 Our next activities will also be directed at solving problems that have
10 occurred within our domain and that relate to the area of the Republic of
11 the Serb Krajina.
12 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, no.
13 When reading, could you read slow and speak into the microphone
14 for the benefit of the interpreters.
15 And, Mr. Karadzic, repeat your question.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. General, sir, could you just interpret this for us, this last
18 paragraph. What does it say there? This action in your view, is this
19 customary? Is this a routine matter in the process?
20 A. Yes. It is necessary to submit information to the
21 State Commission for the exchange of prisoners of war. Yes, this is
22 quite customary.
23 Q. Do we see the date here, the 10th of August on the stamp?
24 A. The 10th of August at 11.50. I assume it is 1995, but the date
25 cannot really be seen.
1 Q. In the heading we see 95 within the number, and on the stamp we
2 see August.
3 A. Yes. And signed State Commission for the exchange of prisoners
4 of war, Bulajic.
5 Q. Thank you. Tell me, is this customary that the Drina Corps -- or
6 rather, corps as such communicate with the State Commission? Or rather,
7 did you find any document, any example of these corps commissions for
8 exchanges address me?
9 A. I did not come across a document in which they were addressing
11 Q. Thank you.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted?
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
14 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3867, Your Honours.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] 1D25245. Could we please have that
16 document now? There is a translation.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. General, sir, could you please read this to yourself, page 1, so
19 that you familiarise yourself with it, and then I'm going to put a
20 question to you.
21 General, sir, can you tell us -- I think we need the next page in
22 English. The second paragraph. The Serb commission proposes that the
23 issue be resolved on the principle of one for one.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Can you tell us what is the extent of the knowledge of the
1 commission for the exchange of prisoners since they suggest that this
2 principle of one for one should be applied to Srebrenica?
3 A. I suppose the commission presumes that there were prisoners taken
4 on all sides. Consequently, they believe that there were both Serb and
5 Muslim prisoners.
6 Q. Does this position imply that the commission may know something
7 about the executions?
8 A. No.
9 Q. Can you present to the Chamber the text that is in this box.
10 A. In the mentioned stages, the backbone of the Muslims who would be
11 released would be -- or, rather, the basis of the composition of the
12 Muslims who would be released would be one-third the Muslim soldiers
13 taken prisoner in the Sarajevo battle-field in general, and the rest
14 would be the remaining Muslims captured in the activities of the
15 liberation of Srebrenica and Zepa.
16 Q. What does it passage tell you, General?
17 A. It indicates that there are captured members of the BH Army who
18 participated in the combat around Srebrenica and Zepa.
19 Q. Thank you. Can you give us the date that is present in the stamp
21 A. 13 August.
22 Q. And the text above in the headline says the 12th of August;
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Does the commission count on these prisoners from Srebrenica and
2 A. According to the text, yes, it does.
3 Q. Thank you. Can it be admitted?
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3868, Your Honours.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Can we go back to page 1 to see who this was copied to.
8 A. To the commissions for the exchange of war prisoners.
9 Q. General, we're interested in those who this was copied to for
10 their information.
11 A. Well, it's just disappeared from the screen. Can you enlarge it
12 a bit. For information Dr. Radovan Karadzic, President of
13 Republika Srpska. Dr. Momcilo Krajisnik, president of the Assembly of
14 Republika Srpska. Dr. Nikola Koljevic, deputy president of
15 Republika Srpska. The Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska.
16 Mr. Sava Srbac, government secretary of the Republic of Serbian Krajina.
17 Q. What conclusions can you draw? What sort of information would
18 all these people who this is being copied to get including the president
19 of the republic? Would they get alerted to the fact that there was
20 something irregular in the matter?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now look at 1D25246. Has
24 this document been admitted? My apologies. 1D25250, please. I
25 apologise. What we have right now is -- is what I'm looking for. Can we
1 keep this document.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Please see this for yourself, who is writing this to whom.
4 A. It's the State Commission writing to the Main Staff, and the
5 commission for exchanges of east Bosnia and Drina Corps and the subject
6 is delivery of information.
7 Q. Can you paraphrase this. On the 14th of August they are --
8 A. Seeking information about the number of prisoners within the AORs
9 of east Bosnia and Drina Corps. Their release would fully be based on
10 the previously agreed principles in order of capture of larger groups of
11 soldiers of the Army of Republika Srpska, Vijenac, Lisaca, Majevica,
12 et cetera.
13 Q. What does this document tell you? What is this State Commission
14 counting on?
15 A. Well, that there are prisoners on both sides that can be
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted?
18 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3869, Your Honours.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 1D25250 now. And
21 the translation.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. General, sir, can you look at that?
24 A. It's very small print, and there's a lot of text.
25 Q. Can you just tell us collectively who this is being sent to and
1 to whom for information?
2 A. Again it's the State Commission sending it to the various
3 commissions for exchanges of the various corps, and it is being copied to
4 the same addressees that we read in the previous document except that
5 Mr. Dusan Kozic is mentioned here, the prime minister of Republika Srpska
6 who I don't think was copied to in that previous document.
7 Q. Can you see here it says by Thursday the 12th of October?
8 A. We received a complete reply to our official letter from the
9 commissions for exchange of prisoners of war of the Sarajevo-Romanija
10 Corps and Eastern Bosnia Corps. From the commission for the exchange of
11 prisoners of war of the Hercegovina Corps we received a reply that was
12 missing information on the prisoners of war held in prisons in the zone
13 of responsibility of the Hercegovina Corps. We still have not received
14 answers from the commissions for the exchange of prisoners of war of the
15 Drina Corps and the 1st and 2nd Krajina Corps.
16 Q. Thank you. I am just urging you to read and spoke slowly and
17 that goes for myself as well, though I'm rushing to use up the time. Can
18 we have the next page.
19 Can you read this bit in order to implement the entire --
20 A. In order to succeed in carrying out this entire -- I don't know
21 what this reads.
22 Q. Project.
23 A. And knock the trump card from the hands of the opposing side. I
24 suppose it reads related here to the question of the missing. It is
25 necessary to secure quality information and something is erased here. I
1 can't read it.
2 Q. Can you read the last passage, still within the box.
3 A. In accordance with the global, is that it?
4 Q. Yes.
5 A. In accordance with the global interest of Republika Srpska,
6 ensure that ICRC representatives can conduct their mission in terms of
7 visiting prisons and registering prisoners.
8 Q. General, can you look at the bottom and the date. It reads
9 12 October.
10 A. Yes, 12 October 1995, signed by the president of the
11 State Commission.
12 Q. General, does anything in here indicate that in mid-October the
13 state authorities have their suspicions about the fact that there are no
14 prisoners from Srebrenica and Zepa?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Thank you. Can this be admitted?
17 JUDGE KWON: We'll mark it for identification pending full
18 translation, but before we do that, yes, Mr. Mitchell.
19 MR. MITCHELL: Mr. President, my intervention isn't related to
20 this document, it's one that we addressed a few minutes ago, the
21 12 August document, which was personally sent to Mr. Karadzic. That's
22 actually already admitted into evidence, and the Prosecution's
23 translation, I think, is substantively different at that paragraph that
24 was highlighted and shown to the witness. That's P4975. The Defence
25 translation says: Other Muslims captured during the liberation of
1 Srebrenica and Zepa would make up the required numbers. The
2 Prosecution's translation says: The required number of Muslims would be
3 completed by the remaining Muslims captured during the activities of
4 liberation of Srebrenica and Zepa.
5 I think the implication of remaining Muslims is -- is quite
7 JUDGE KWON: But this is the same document?
8 MR. MITCHELL: It's the same document, just different
10 JUDGE KWON: If we're dealing with the same document, there's no
11 point of admitting it separately and if there is a translation issue,
12 then there's a step for the Defence to take.
13 Mr. Robinson.
14 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. I think we -- we don't have
15 to admit the Defence document, but if you can order that the translation
16 be looked at for revision that would be the simplest thing since there
17 are two competing translations.
18 JUDGE KWON: It's for the Defence to file a request if upon
19 examination of the document.
20 MR. ROBINSON: Very well. We'll do that.
21 MR. MITCHELL: Also, Mr. President, I'll leave it in your hands,
22 but if the redirect of the witness is intended to show that there's
23 nothing irregular going on here, there's nothing that would put anyone on
24 notice, then perhaps the general should be redirected to this document
25 again with a different translation and asked again --
1 JUDGE KWON: Or if you'd like to further cross-examination --
2 recross-examination for this, the Chamber is minded to allow you to do
4 MR. MITCHELL: Thank you, Mr. President.
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic, please continue.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] With your leave. The witness was
7 presented with the original. The translation is something that matters
8 for the Defence and the Prosecution, but it makes no difference for the
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. General, is the treatment of prisoners of war regulated by
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I apologise. We didn't receive a
14 number for the last document, MFI, pending a full translation.
15 JUDGE KWON: But let us find out whether that was identical to --
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Not this one. It was the previous
17 one, Your Excellency.
18 JUDGE KWON: 1D -- 1D25245. Yes. I was confused. Shall we
19 assign that number for this one pending full -- mark it for
20 identification pending full translation.
21 THE REGISTRAR: 1D25250 will be MFI'd 3869.
22 MR. ROBINSON: Excuse me, I think 3868 was the one that was the
23 duplicate, so then this should be 3868 if I'm following correctly.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, that will be correct.
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. General, did you hear the question? Is the treatment of
3 prisoners of war regulated by anything or is it left to the discretion of
4 those who capture individuals?
5 A. It's regulated by the Geneva Conventions as well as the
6 operational instructions that the Main Staff issued to its subordinate
8 Q. Thank you.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 1D42041. Can it be
10 enlarged, please. We have the translation as well.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
12 Q. General, can you just identify it? It's the 20th of April, 1995.
13 A. It's the instructions that the East Bosnia Corps command sent to
14 its subordinate units as to how to proceed in the event of arrest,
15 capture, and transfer of enemy prisoners of war and other captives.
16 Q. Does the preamble state that there were deficiencies in the
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. From the point of capture to the point of the transfer to
20 Batkovic; right?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Please read this to yourself and then tell us what you think
23 about the preamble.
24 A. What happened was that they were being taken to where they were
25 not supposed to be taken, to the town command where they were being
2 THE INTERPRETER: Can the witness please repeat when he said that
3 somebody could not interrogate soldiers.
4 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Could you repeat your answer,
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The first thing. They are alerting
7 to the fact that the most frequent mistakes made were the fact that
8 soldiers would take prisoners of war to the front lines, take them to the
9 town command post and interrogate them, whereas they were not authorised
10 for interrogations.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Now, the sentence you started: The majority.
13 A. The majority of captured enemy soldiers get to be exchanged
14 pretty soon and it is certain that they submit reports to their
15 intelligence and security organs upon their return. Thus they are in the
16 position to provide significant information about our forces, the level
17 of the front lines' reinforcement, the manpower along the front line,
18 equipment on the front line. Effects of destruction in the area, the
19 mood among the fighters, and the population, the distribution of command
20 posts, forward command posts, et cetera.
21 Q. Thank you. I think that in line 8 interpretation is not good.
22 They are exchanged soon thereafter, so happened to be exchanged. So it
23 so happens that they are exchanged quite soon. Is that the sense of it,
25 A. Yes.
1 JUDGE KWON: For planning purpose, I'm asking. How much longer
2 would you need to complete your re-examination?
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Between 20 minutes and half hour
4 after the break.
5 JUDGE KWON: Can you not just finish in just 15 minutes? Then
6 we'll have a break. But the Chamber is minded to have a somewhat long
7 break for an hour today and resume at 1.30. I take it there should be no
8 problem with us finishing at 3.00 today.
9 We resume at 1.30.
10 --- Recess taken at 12.31 p.m.
11 --- On resuming at 1.34 p.m.
12 JUDGE KWON: Please continue, Mr. Karadzic.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. General, sir, please take a look at the first paragraph. I hope
16 you've had a look at all of them. Is this customary to have things taken
17 from POWs, things that could make it possible for them to harm themselves
18 or escape or something? Is there anything in this instruction that is
19 not allowed?
20 A. No, I don't think so.
21 Q. Can we have the next page in Serbian. In paragraph 4 it is also
22 prescribed how members of the VRS are arrested, what the procedure is for
23 them, for volunteers, foreigners. Is there anything that is unusual
25 A. No, I don't see anything unusual.
1 Q. Beforehand, you saw that most POWs were exchanged quickly. Can
2 you tell us now in view of everything you saw earlier on and today, in
3 view of the way in which state authorities function, those that are in
4 charge of POWs, in all these documents and all these reports was there
5 anything that would alarm the president of the republic in order to spur
6 him to deal with that or interfere?
7 A. I didn't see anything that would call for that.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted?
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3870, Your Honours.
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. General, sir, during the cross-examination it was suggested to
14 you that the conclusions concerning my participation in command are not
15 exactly based on facts, so now I'd like to show you a few intercepts,
16 1D5838, please, or 65 ter 30883.
17 Do you remember the crisis in the beginning of August 1993 in our
18 relations and in our relations with UNPROFOR? Do you remember?
19 A. I know that there was a crisis in Banja Luka, but that was
20 September 1993. And in August I cannot recall.
21 Q. All right. Please take a look at this. Do you remember the
22 crisis with Igman and Bjelasnica?
23 A. That was in 1993, in July and August.
24 Q. K is Karadzic and they assume that there is Milovanovic, too, and
25 in line 2 I say: Listen, we have a fallout here between the UN and
1 Mladic. And I say it's huge embarrassment and he says regardless of what
2 politicians decide, he will not withdraw -- can you read this to
4 A. Huge embarrassment. It's a disaster, he says. Regardless of
5 what the politicians decide --
6 Q. General, can you read it to yourself. Down here it says: But,
7 man, he has to say. He mustn't resist the political sides because it's
8 playing into their hands. And further down it says that he's giving them
9 proof that he has cut himself off from politics and he does what he
10 wants. How does this fit into what you know on the basis of your
11 studying of our documents?
12 A. This fully fits into what I wrote and said. He considered
13 himself the operative Supreme Commander of the military, and he thought
14 that it was the political echelons that bothered him in that respect.
15 THE INTERPRETER: And the interpreter did not hear the end of the
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can this be admitted?
18 JUDGE KWON: The interpreters didn't hear the last sentence of
19 your answer. What was it, Mr. Radinovic?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said that he saw himself as the
21 operative commander of the army and that in the operative command it was
22 the political echelons that bothered him and that was a source of
23 misunderstanding, and that is how he understood that.
24 JUDGE KWON: We'll mark it for identification.
25 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D3871, Your Honours.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. General, sir, during the proofing, the preparations, you said
4 that the situation was absurd, that both the military and the political
5 people were right and there was a clash, and you said that it's in the
6 nature of the military to strive to be victorious and the politics didn't
7 want that. Could you explain?
8 A. That is the classical discrepancy between politics and the
9 military. Every military wages war to subjugate the other side and to
10 win. However, it is the political echelon that has to decide what should
11 be done and that things should be verified through talks either at the
12 beginning or during or at the end. That which is achieved through
13 military victories.
14 Q. How did you come to the conclusions -- conclusion that politics
15 did not want victory and that therefore they differed from the military
16 in that respect?
17 A. There are several indicators. The entire strategic concept was
18 defensive. The grouping of forces is defensive. And the deployment in
19 the area of responsibility meant statistical warfare and forces need to
20 be manoeuvred in order to win a war, grouped. And all of that is
21 rendered impossible by this strategy. In public speech at sessions of
22 the Assembly and on other occasions I came across your views and those of
23 your associates pointing out that we are not waging war to win over
24 the -- to be victorious over Muslims but to have Republika Srpska for us.
25 When I say "you," I mean you and your associates. I remember what
1 Mr. Buha said at a session in 1995 when he reprimanded some generals who
2 held something against you; namely, that Tuzla was not taken and Bihac
3 and some other cities. And he said then, We did not go out in a war to
4 conquer. It's a defensive war. And there was no need for us to do that.
5 We don't want that belongs to others. That is what Buha said at one of
6 the sessions. I think it was in 1995.
7 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could all unnecessary
8 microphones please be switched off. We can barely hear the witness.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation]
10 Q. 31687 is the 65 ter number I'd like us to see now, please.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Thank you, General.
13 A. This is too small.
14 Q. Could it please be enlarged. I'm talking to General Tomanic here
15 and I'm probably speaking from Geneva. I don't know whether he was a
16 colonel or a general then, 1993.
17 A. Probably during the operation of Lukavac 93.
18 Q. Yes. And now they are interpreting and sometimes quoting. They
19 say that I'm asking why our forces returned to Igman and then around the
20 middle it says Karadzic repeats that it is pure idiocy. And then there
21 is some swearing, that I'm going to dismiss certain people, execute them,
22 and so on, and then there's the sentence where it says Karadzic went wild
23 and said, Well, man, it's clear to me, the army is lying to me. They've
24 been lying to me all the time. The reports I receive are never accurate.
25 Neither Mladic nor anybody else can be a pompous fool, and so on. I'm
1 saying all of this to a man from the Main Staff; isn't that right?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. How does that fit into what you established as you studied
5 A. Exactly as I stated. You reacted whenever the army overstepped
6 the boundaries that were established by the strategy that you and your
7 associates laid down. As far as I can remember this particular case,
8 this was about the Geneva negotiations for solving the crisis in
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina when Mr. Izetbegovic threatened to walk out of the
10 negotiations if it is not abandoned, you order this to be done, there was
11 lots of resistance, but it was eventually accepted. It was handed over
12 to UNPROFOR and later on they handed it over to the Muslims. And in 1994
13 this resulted with the loss of life of female nurses at this particular
15 Q. Thank you. General, did you have any observation regarding the
16 words of mine when I said that I'm not believing the reports?
17 A. Well, that was your impression that you were not receiving
18 accurate information in your reports and obviously you didn't. If that
19 had been the case you would have known what the situation with the
20 prisoners of Srebrenica was.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted.
23 JUDGE KWON: We'll mark it for identification.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit MFI D3872, Your Honours.
25 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. General, you also mentioned my attitude towards humanitarian
2 issues and the role of the army in that respect. I'd like to show you a
3 document, 1D9577.
4 A. There's nothing yet.
5 Q. 1D9577. Could you please look --
6 A. It disappeared from the screen. Oh, now I see it.
7 Q. Negative consequences of the decision of the Main Staff to impose
8 a ban on the movement of international organisations. Can we have the
9 next page, please. This is an aide-memoire by Mr. Kalinic, and this is
10 what it says here, the penultimate paragraph: Absolutely stop the
11 Main Staff of the VRS who doesn't have either the mandate or personnel
12 for humanitarian issues from --
13 THE INTERPRETER: Can we please have the previous page in order
14 to be able to finish the interpretation.
15 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Can you go back to the previous
16 page. So the interpreters were not able to interpret your question in
17 full because we moved to the next page. So take a look at the
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. General, can you please look at the penultimate paragraph where
21 the Ministry of Health is request the Main Staff to act as an arbiter in
22 moral questions and humanitarian issues because they don't have
23 appropriate mandate and personnel. What is your opinion about this?
24 A. I fully agree, because the Main Staff cannot act as an arbiter in
25 political and humanitarian issues because it doesn't have the necessary
1 personnel and resources. They should stick to military and security
3 Q. Did you manage to find in the document any reasons why the
4 Ministry of Health intervened in this manner and how this evolved? Were
5 there any disagreements?
6 A. Yes. There were disagreements. They were more restrictive than
7 the politicians when it came to the movement and operations of
8 international organisations, and that occasioned the violation of
9 international norms and sometimes in these convoys there were weapons,
10 but --
11 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the last part
12 of his answer.
13 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Radinovic, the interpreters couldn't hear the
14 last part of your answer. Could you repeat.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The essence of my answer was that
16 there were reasons for disagreements, particularly where -- when it
17 concerned the movement of humanitarian convoys, international mediators,
18 the ICRC, and the army was much more restrictive in that respect than the
19 politicians. Truth to say, they had good reasons for that because there
20 occurred violations of the rules governing humanitarian aid supply
21 because the convoys sometimes carried weapons and other military
22 equipment which is otherwise not permitted.
23 Q. Thank you. Can we now have the last page. In post scriptum
24 it's -- Kalinic says to amend the order of the president of the republic
25 by adding the WHO, the World Health Organisation, UNICEF, and UNHCR, and
1 the date is the 2nd of October, 1994. How does this fit with your
2 conclusions regarding the position of the civilian authorities concerning
3 humanitarian issues?
4 A. First of all, I concluded that the entire system of humanitarian
5 aid and the system of international organisations and their organs was
6 under the umbrella of state organs. The army was supposed to just check
7 them at the check-points but they did not have the mandate either to stop
8 them or to suspend them altogether.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could this be marked for
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 THE REGISTRAR: MFI D3873, Your Honours.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. The Prosecution devoted quite a lot of time to your assertions
15 concerning the issue whether the orders were carried out or not. Can we
16 please have 65 ter 11423. This is dated the 14th of December, 1994. It
17 is addressed to General Mladic and Colonel Tomanic, the commander of the
18 2nd Corps. Please read it to yourself.
19 A. I remember this document from earlier on. The general here
20 mobilised the president of the Executive Committee of Grahovo
21 municipality, but you are just to be suspended and to be reverted to the
22 previous situation, but your general order was that these things should
23 not be done.
24 Q. In your opinion, was I right? If he puts the president of the --
25 president of the municipal government and --
1 THE INTERPRETER: Could Mr. Karadzic please finish the question
2 and could the witness please wait before starting the answer. Thank you.
3 JUDGE KWON: It only takes more time. Please speak slow and put
4 a pause. The interpreters find it difficult to follow, impossible.
5 Could you repeat your question first, Mr. Karadzic.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. General, the act of mobilising the president of the municipal
8 government and appointing him the assistant for morale, what effects
9 would have it have on the municipality?
10 A. It would have adverse effects. The government would be without
11 leadership, and it will have serious consequences.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can this be admitted?
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
14 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3874, Your Honours.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have now 65 ter 111109.
16 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: 11109.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Thank you. General, we're not doing this in sequence. Although
19 we're following the years, we are now in the year 1995. We started from
20 1992. Please read this document to yourself. It seems that the -- some
21 of the deputies are asking a question.
22 A. A seminar was held and it had been organised by a General Gvero
23 and the deputies wanted you to tell them what this was about and what was
24 discussed there. You say that you knew nothing about that and you're
25 asking for information about this.
1 Q. How does this fit with your conclusions?
2 A. This only confirms that there was parallel channels.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted into evidence.
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3875, Your Honours.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have 1D9563.
7 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. This is from March 1995, the 15th of March. Please tell the
9 Chamber what this relates to since there's no translation.
10 A. This relates to an order of the chairman of the State Committee
11 for Co-operation with the UN, Mr. Koljevic, defining the obligations to
12 allow unhindered passage of the UNHCR. Since this order was not carried
13 out, you ordered it to be executed immediately and to state the reasons
14 for not having carried it out.
15 Q. And who this was sent to?
16 A. This was sent to the General Staff of the
17 Army of Republika Srpska to General Mladic personally.
18 Q. By looking at this order, would you say that this was an isolated
19 document, and how were these matters treated between me and the
20 General Staff?
21 A. This was not the only order of this sort. There were quite a few
22 of them. I see many such -- I have seen many such documents, and this
23 indicates also that there were disagreements within the chain of command
24 from the Supreme Commander down to the Main Staff and vice versa.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be marked for
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
3 THE REGISTRAR: MFI D3876.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can we now have
5 65 ter 13559.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Can you please read this document to yourself and then tell us
8 what this is about.
9 A. This is a document sent by you to the commander of the
10 Drina Corps, so the command of the Drina Corps and to the Main Staff for
11 information. This pertains to an incident involving the driver of the
12 brigade, Mr. Djuricic [phoen]. When he came to the check-point he spoke
13 offensively about these people and particularly about yourself, and you
14 are asking this to be investigated, that a statement be taken, and that a
15 written report be submitted to you by the 23rd of May.
16 Q. General, can you tell us after having studied the documents that
17 you had available, how did it happen that the commander's driver
18 demonstrates this kind of attitude towards the president and --
19 A. Well, this fits the picture of the entire system and the way you
20 were treated.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can this be admitted?
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3877, Your Honours.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can I have 1D9580.
25 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. We don't have a translation. General, can you tell us who I'm
2 sending this to?
3 A. You sent it to the Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska, to
4 the sector or department for intelligence and security affairs,
5 General Tolimir, 18 May 1995 is the date.
6 Q. And here the Ministry of Health, Labour, and Social Welfare,
7 whose minister is the president or the chairman of the commission for
8 co-operation with international health organisations is complaining about
9 the fact that he did not receive any response from the Main Staff to his
10 letter about the freedom of movement. Can you tell us what this is
12 A. Representatives of the international health organisation
13 protested with this gentleman about the fact that the -- their work was
14 being made impossible. So he approached Kalinic and they in turn are --
15 you are now in turn addressing the Main Staff about this fact.
16 Q. And how does this reflect on your positions?
17 A. It reflects my position about the relations between the army and
18 the political structures.
19 Q. Thank you. Can this be MFI'd?
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
21 THE REGISTRAR: MFI D3878, Your Honours.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can we look at 15680, a
23 65 ter document.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Are you familiar with this decision of mine, and was it
1 implemented? Look at item 1.
2 A. Yes, yes. I know it.
3 Q. Can you present item 1 and its legality and whether it's
5 A. Hereby you decided that the -- you should rename the Main Staff
6 of the VRS into the General Staff of the VRS. In time of imminent threat
7 of war or in a state of war it would become the staff of the
8 Supreme Command, and in keeping with the constitution and law, the staff
9 would be immediately directed and commanded by the Supreme Commander.
10 Q. Can you tell us what your opinion about this item 1 is?
11 A. Well, this is what I talked about when I talked about the
12 positioning of the Main Staff within the military hierarchy. It should
13 have been this from the beginning, what you were asking for, that it
14 should be the General Staff that should deal with the use of army in
15 peacetime, and of course in times of war it should become the staff of
16 the Supreme Command and deal with the same issues.
17 Q. What would in that case be the role of the Supreme Commander?
18 A. Well, the Supreme Commander would also be the operational army
20 Q. Thank you.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted?
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Was this order of mine implemented?
24 A. Your order was not implemented because of the huge pressure that
25 was brought to bear upon it by the public at large, official dignitaries
1 and even the Serbian patriarch was calling upon you to desist from this
2 idea and the entire generalship made this impossible or opposed this idea
3 of yours.
4 JUDGE KWON: We'll admit it.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3879, Your Honours.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Did you say that the entire generalship did what was in fact
8 insubordination, refuse to obey this?
9 A. Yes. In fact, they said that they would not be executing
10 anybody's orders other than the order of the commander of the Main Staff.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have 13643, a 65 ter
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Do you see this decree that I issued and is it in line with the
15 previous document, and was it implemented, I mean this decree?
16 A. This document is the president's decree appointing General Mladic
17 as special advisor to the Supreme Commander, and it was not implemented.
18 Q. Why?
19 A. Because General Mladic refused to implement it. Not just him but
20 the entire generalship refused to have their structure transformed into
21 the General Staff.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted.
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
25 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3880, Your Honours.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can we now have 65 ter
3 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
4 Q. Are you familiar with this document dated the 5th of August,
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. What is the meeting in question here that I am denying the right
8 of General Mladic to be engaged in this?
9 A. This meeting is in response to your decision to rename the
10 Main Staff and appoint Mladic as your special advisor.
11 Q. Thank you. Do you know what was the result of this meeting of
13 A. As a result of the meeting, the parliament, as well as all the
14 other important institutions in Republika Srpska, were publicly
16 Q. Addressed by whom and on what issue?
17 A. By generals, and the subject matter was -- or, rather, at the end
18 of this press release it said that they would not be obeying anyone's
19 orders other than the orders coming from the individual who is authorised
20 for that, and that's General Ratko Mladic.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can this be admitted.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3881, Your Honours.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Thank you. Can we now have 65 ter 6559. We have this in English
1 only so I'll read it out so that you get correct interpretation. First
2 paragraph, 5 August:
3 [In English] "General Ratko Mladic has refused to accept the post
4 of special advisor and co-ordinator of the joint defence of the Serb
5 republic and Republic of Serb Krajina to which he was appointed last
6 night by Serb republic president, Radovan Karadzic.
7 [Interpretation] And the last paragraph reads quoting Mladic:
8 [In English] "'Therefore I shall remain at the post of commander
9 of the main headquarters of the Serb republic army as long as our
10 fighters and people support me, and until I am dismissed in accordance
11 with the constitution and current laws on the army and defence,' Mladic
13 [Interpretation] How does this fit into your findings?
14 A. It's -- it fully confirms what I was saying right from the start,
15 that the appointment of the commander of the Main Staff introduced a
16 duality of authority in the army, and single authority was replaced by
17 dual authority in the chain of command and control.
18 Q. Based on your research did I have actual operative control over
19 our army, especially in the months of July and August 1995?
20 A. I don't think you did.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can this document be
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
24 THE REGISTRAR: D3882, Your Honours.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have 65 ter 15596.
1 Apparently translation isn't completed yet.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Pay attention to this. It's 1st of September, 1995. Have you
4 seen this document? And does it relate to the arrest of the
5 parliamentarians who arrived in Pale with my consent?
6 A. Yes. I saw this document during proofing. You were addressing
7 the Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska, specifically to be
8 delivered to the assistant commander for security and intelligence,
9 General Zdravko Tolimir.
10 Q. I will read the penultimate paragraph. I quote: The European
11 observers who we invited to come enjoy a privileged status of diplomats
12 and parliamentarians. You should recall the fact that the
13 Austro-Hungarian empire released Duke Putnik who was in their territory
14 at the time when a state of war was declared. Do you recall that the
15 Austro-Hungarian Empire did allow the first in command of the
16 Serbian Army to return to Serbia?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Can we have page 2. What is my order here, General?
19 A. Your order is that right after the formalities are dealt with and
20 information is gathered, as well as clarification obtained from the RDB
21 leaders, representatives of EU should be released and escorted to the
22 border with the FRY and that they should be escorted by RDB organs in the
23 same vehicle so that they could travel to Podgorica.
24 Q. Thank you. Knowing all the various businesses that I had to
25 attend to, was this something that I really needed to do?
1 A. Well, certainly this isn't something that you needed to have on
2 your hands as well.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can you this be MFI'd?
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
6 THE REGISTRAR: MFI D3883, Your Honours.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] One more document. Can we have
8 65 ter 14327.
9 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. General, the date is 2nd October 1995. Can you tell
11 Their Honours what does the preamble say, that something was done
12 contrary to my orders, and what is my order?
13 A. You say here that pursuant to the order of the commander of the
14 2nd Corps dated the 28th of September, certain issues were ordered and
15 regulated in contravention of your order, and you state what the order
16 number is, and you are asking that the order of that command be made null
17 and void forthwith and that your order should be implied instead, which
18 relates to this issue, and you also demand that you be reported to about
19 the execution of this order.
20 Q. Well, it seems that we do have a translation after all. So
21 after --
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In the transcript from the point
23 where it reads "You say..., " it should be the witness's answer.
24 Thank you. Can this be admitted?
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes, we'll admit it.
1 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D3884, Your Honours.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. General, you were asked about your assessment of the degree to
4 which Sarajevo was militarised.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 1D1923.
6 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, I do not think that I spoke
7 about -- or discussed with the General the degree in which Sarajevo was
8 militarised, or are you relating -- or is Mr. Karadzic relating to the
9 military targets in town? If that question is meant, then it's okay.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes, precisely. Thank you.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. General, can you tell us what is this map? Are you familiar with
13 it, and if so, what does it represent?
14 A. The map depicts the location and types of military targets that
15 were present in the urban core of Sarajevo.
16 Q. Thank you. Who drafted the map?
17 A. If I recall correctly, I drew it. It appears to look like what I
19 Q. Did you include this map in a publication of yours?
20 A. I included it in my book on Sarajevo. I did the same for my
21 testimony in the case against General Galic. However, for reasons
22 unknown to me, the Chamber refused to admit it.
23 Q. Is this map complete, General?
24 A. No, it is not. It only encompasses what is contained in a sample
25 of documents that I reviewed. In my book I reference these documents. I
1 think that there were 24 documents in all. This was meant as an
2 illustration of what it would look like if all these locations and all
3 the various units were plotted into the map.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can this document be
6 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff.
7 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: No objection, Your Honour. It's actually
8 the -- when we discussed this list of 222 targets, it's actually this map
9 that follows the next page. So no problem.
10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. We'll receive --
11 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Please, could you read this? Can it be enlarged, the legend, I
14 mean, but the Defence can also --
15 JUDGE KWON: I was told this map was the last document -- last
16 page of the document we admitted. Is it correct? Last page of the list.
17 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: I'm not hundred per cent sure. What I meant
18 is we discussed the list, and I know that this -- this map is the next
19 page in the book.
20 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
21 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: I think I -- I think I did, but I'm not
23 JUDGE KWON: Shall we see the list.
24 THE ACCUSED: Could somebody help us about the number of list?
25 THE REGISTRAR: P6449, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE KWON: A bit different. Maybe --
2 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, it is a list, but -- yeah, with
3 other -- with the legend is in a different place. So it's slightly --
4 slightly different.
5 JUDGE KWON: So shall we mark it for identification pending
6 English translation. Probably you need the translation of the legend.
8 THE REGISTRAR: MFI D3885, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE KWON: Are we going to hear Mr. Andric's evidence or not?
10 MR. ROBINSON: I would like to.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, General. I have no
12 further questions. Thank you for your testimony and for the effort you
13 made in order to write this report.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Mitchell.
15 MR. MITCHELL: Mr. President, if I could deal very briefly with
16 that issue.
17 If I could have Exhibit P4975 in e-court.
18 Further cross-examination by Mr. Mitchell:
19 Q. General, this was a document you were shown earlier today. It's
20 the 12th of August, 1995. We can go to English page 2. You can see
21 there it's to the attention of Dr. Radovan Karadzic. If I can go to the
22 second page in English. Sorry, first page in B/C/S, second page in
23 English. If you concentrate on the top paragraph in English.
24 General, can you see the part in that first paragraph where it
25 says the freeing of Serbs detained in Muslim prisons should be solved
1 according to the principle one for one. Can you find that part? It's in
2 inverting commas, one for one.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] For the interpreters it's
4 paragraph 2.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Second paragraph.
6 MR. MITCHELL:
7 Q. You found that, General?
8 A. Yes, yes, I see it.
9 Q. That means one Serb prisoner for one Muslim prisoner; right?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Okay.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Now, if we scroll to -- if we go over to page 2 in the B/C/S,
14 you'll see subheading (b) at the very top. It talks about the freeing of
15 prisoners from prisons in Sarajevo, and it talks about 150 prisoners in
16 the silo in Tarcin, and 50 prisoners in Sarajevo prisons. So there's 200
17 Serb prisoners who are going to be exchanged in three phases, and then we
18 see in the next paragraph down it says: In the mentioned phases, the
19 bulk of Muslims who are going to be freed, so the bulk of Muslims who are
20 going to be exchanged will consist --
21 JUDGE KWON: Can we see the next page.
22 MR. MITCHELL: Yes, next page in English.
23 Q. You remember, General, we're dealing with a one-for-one exchange.
24 So 200 Serb prisoners, we're dealing with 200 Muslim prisoners. The bulk
25 of Muslims who are going to be free will consist of one-third of the
1 Muslim soldiers who were captured in the general area of the Sarajevo
2 front. The required number of Muslims will be completed by the remaining
3 Muslims captured during the activities of liberation of Srebrenica and
5 Well, it's very obvious from this that the remaining prisoners on
6 the 12th of August from the liberation of Srebrenica and Zepa are
7 something less than 200; right? That's what this means.
8 A. That's just for this exchange. This exchange. There may be
9 others for others.
10 Q. General, it's very clear. It says the required number of
11 Muslims, this is for this one-for-one exchange of 200 will be completed
12 by the remaining Muslims captured during the activities of the liberation
13 of Srebrenica and Zepa. That's the remaining. That's all the prisoners
15 A. But it doesn't say all the remaining ones. The remaining ones
16 from that contingent. It doesn't say that it's going to be all the
17 remaining prisoners. Maybe you're right, but that is not what I would
18 infer on the basis of this text.
19 Q. Well, I think it's very clear, General. It says completed by the
20 remaining Muslims. Not some remaining Muslims, the remaining Muslims.
21 It's the next page in English.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could I kindly ask?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's barely legible.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could I kindly ask that the
25 original be read out and that the interpreters interpret this very
1 carefully --
2 MR. MITCHELL: Oh, if the interpreters --
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] -- up to the necessary number.
4 MR. MITCHELL: If the interpreters could focus on the second
5 paragraph in the B/C/S where it says Muslimana -- it's the last two lines
6 of the second paragraph.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could the entire paragraph be read
8 out carefully so that it be interpreted very carefully. I can read it
10 JUDGE KWON: Shall we ask the witness to read out?
11 MR. MITCHELL:
12 Q. Yes, General, if you could read out that paragraph.
13 JUDGE KWON: Slowly to the microphone.
14 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We do not understand the
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Is this it? In the mentioned
17 stages, the bulk of the Muslims that would be freed will be a third of
18 the Muslim soldiers who were taken prisoner at the broader area of the
19 Sarajevo theatre of war up to the required number of Muslims. It would
20 be the remaining Muslims taken prisoner in the activities of freeing
21 Srebrenica and Zepa.
22 MR. MITCHELL:
23 Q. Sorry, the remaining prisoners?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. All right. One more document, General. P5226. And this is a
1 report by General Tolimir who you said earlier today was the most senior
2 member of the Main Staff dealing with prisoners on a daily basis. So
3 3rd of September, 1995. And if you'd just read -- in fact, you should
4 read this document in its entirety, General.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. If we could go over to the second page in English. General, can
7 you see in the fourth paragraph down where General Tolimir says that:
8 The number of captured Muslims in our prisons is smaller than the number
9 of captured VRS members in Muslim prisons? Can you see that?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Okay. And the Muslim side is blocking exchanges and making it
12 conditional that a larger number of Muslims from the area of Srebrenica
13 and Zepa be exchanged than the number of Muslims we have in our prisons.
14 And again if we go over to the next page in English, I think the next
15 page in B/C/S, you'll see General Tolimir again talking about having a
16 smaller number of prisoners. If we can go to the second last page in
17 English. You'll see in the third last paragraph General Tolimir is
18 talking about that the security organs and the exchange commission
19 chairman must avoid using parents' bitterness because it's not possible
20 to exchange prisoners who have been imprisoned for quite some time. This
21 is the issue of VRS soldiers in Muslim custody who can't be exchanged
22 because the VRS doesn't have enough Muslim prisoners; right? That's the
23 issue here.
24 A. Or there are too many Serb prisoners. That might be possible
1 Q. There's more Serb prisoners than Muslim prisoners at this point;
2 right? That's what this document is about.
3 A. That's what is written in this document, but it doesn't mean that
4 there were few Muslim prisoners. Maybe there were too many Serb
5 prisoners. That cannot be seen from here.
6 Q. Well, actually, General, it can. General Tolimir says it is the
7 result of the small number of enemy soldiers captured by our unit. So
8 General Tolimir is saying get the message out there we only captured a
9 small number of enemy soldiers. Can you see that in the thirst last
10 paragraph? It's the very last sentence in that third last paragraph.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Okay. Now I want you to look at the last paragraph.
13 Mr. Karadzic asked you a lot of questions about the commission for
14 exchange. General Tolimir says: The commission for the exchange of
15 prisoners of war has all the information, and they must also inform
16 members of the prisoners' families of this, which will prevent their
17 unnecessary visits to the Main Staff or to the office of the president of
18 the republic in order to exact more favourable treatment and violate the
19 principles and priorities of a comprehensive exchange throughout the
21 So, General, isn't that the case? The basic point of
22 General Tolimir's document is that the exchange commission knows exactly
23 why there aren't enough Muslim prisoners to exchange, and Tolimir is
24 saying you need to manage these families better so they stop coming and
25 bothering the Main Staff and the president with this issue about why
1 there aren't enough prisoners; right?
2 A. That's right.
3 Q. So the president -- the office of the president and the president
4 don't want to have to keep explaining themselves to Serb families why
5 they can't get their soldiers back.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And you remember, don't you, the conversation, the report from
8 Miroslav Deronjic to President Karadzic, on the evening of 13 July that
9 we have 2.000 and more come in during the night. He knew there were
10 thousands of prisoners. Wouldn't the solution be if President Karadzic
11 thought that these prisoners were still alive, he could solve it on the
12 spot, couldn't he?
13 A. Well, it cannot be done on the spot because the procedure of
14 exchanges takes time. I was the chairman of the commission and I know
15 what a painstaking job it is. It goes on for days and days.
16 Q. General --
17 A. A lot of time is required for --
18 Q. I understand, but he could have said to those families, rather
19 than saying, Don't come and bother me, he could have said, We've got
20 thousands of prisoners from Srebrenica. Why don't we exchange them for
21 your family members. That's what he would have said if he knew that
22 those -- or if he thought those prisoners were still alive; right?
23 A. Well, I'm not sure that he didn't tell them. He asked for the
24 commission in charge to resolve the matter, not he.
25 MR. MITCHELL: Nothing further, Mr. President.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Excellencies, may I just briefly.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
3 Further re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
4 Q. [Interpretation] General, sir, could you please look at the last
5 sentence in the penultimate paragraph where it says disregarding the
6 impossibility of exchanging captured members of the VRS since the
7 beginning of the war in Croatia and the former BiH. How come -- how come
8 did that happen that there were more Serbs than Muslims? How many did I
9 release without reciprocity from other side?
10 A. I really don't know about that. I know that our army and I was
11 president of that commission exchanged on the basis of principle all for
12 all, so not one for one. Not bearing in mind -- not taking into account
13 how many were on either side.
14 Q. Doesn't this sentence indicate that from the very beginning of
15 the war there were captured members of the VRS in Croatia and Bosnia who
16 hadn't been exchanged yet?
17 A. I know of such cases.
18 MR. MITCHELL: That was leading, Mr. President, but it's over.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, had the General just read
20 that, that is literally what that sentence says.
21 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Once again, General --
23 JUDGE KWON: He said he didn't know that. Shall we -- shall we
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes. Thank you.
1 JUDGE KWON: That concludes your evidence, General Radinovic.
2 Thank you for your coming to The Hague to give it. You are free to go.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Please, may I just -- page 95,
5 line 17. It was not recorded that it is the commission that is in charge
6 of exchanges, not I.
7 [The witness withdrew]
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Actually, it can be listened to and
9 then ...
10 JUDGE KWON: That may be correct. While we are waiting for the
11 next witness, Mr. Robinson, this is a matter we find out while checking
12 all the pending motions. On the 14th of March this year, the Prosecution
13 filed a motion to exclude in part the evidence of Witness Nedjo Vlaski.
14 On the same day you informed the Chamber that this witness would be
15 postponed. Theoretically or technically this is still pending. So I
16 wanted to check whether the Defence is minded to call this witness,
17 whether this witness is coming to testify, and whether the Prosecution is
18 minded to withdraw the motion.
19 MR. ROBINSON: That issue is still under review, so we couldn't
20 say for sure that he's not going to be called at this point.
21 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. If you could let us know as soon as that
22 has been resolved or decided.
23 MR. ROBINSON: Yes. I think that would be connected to the
24 broader issue of how many witnesses we're allowed to call before the end
25 of our case.
1 [The witness entered court]
2 JUDGE KWON: Good afternoon, General Andric.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
4 JUDGE KWON: Could you make the solemn declaration, please.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
6 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
7 WITNESS: SVETOZAR ANDRIC
8 [Witness answered through interpreter]
9 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Please be seated and make yourself
10 comfortable. Yes.
11 Before you commence your evidence, General Andric, I must let you
12 know that a certain Rule of evidence that we have here at the Tribunal
13 that is Rule 90(E). Under this Rule you may object to answering any
14 question from Mr. Karadzic, the Prosecution, or even from the Judges if
15 you believe that your answer might incriminate you in a criminal offence.
16 In this context, "incriminate" means saying something that might amount
17 to an admission of guilt for a criminal offence or saying something that
18 might provide evidence that you might have committed a criminal offence.
19 However, should you think that an answer might incriminate you and as a
20 consequence you refuse to answer the question, I must let you know that
21 the Tribunal has the power to compel you to answer the question, but in
22 that situation, the Tribunal would ensure that your testimony compelled
23 in such circumstances would not be used in any case that might be laid
24 against you for any offence save and except the offence of giving false
1 Do you understand that, sir?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand that.
3 JUDGE KWON: And I also apologise to you for the delay due to the
4 prolonged examination of previous witness having subpoenaed you to appear
5 today, and it's evident we cannot conclude your evidence today, and we'll
6 continue on Monday next week.
7 That said, Mr. Karadzic, please proceed.
8 Examination by Mr. Karadzic:
9 Q. [Interpretation] Good day, General.
10 A. Good day, Mr. President.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Let us please pause between questions and answers, and let us
14 speak slowly. Did you give a statement to the Defence team?
15 A. Yes, I did.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could I please have 1D9091 in
17 e-court. Please take a look, left-hand side of the screen. Do you see
18 that statement before you?
19 A. Yes, I do. It's very small, though, but I have a copy in front
20 of me here.
21 Q. Thank you. Have you read and signed this statement?
22 A. Yes, I've read it and signed it.
23 Q. Thank you. Could the witness please be shown the last page in
24 order to identify his signature.
25 General, sir, did this statement faithfully reflect what you
1 said, or do you need to correct something?
2 A. For the most part, yes. Something is omitted though, my
3 attendance at the funeral in Vlasenica on the 30th for a few hours. I
4 went there, from the area of Milici where there was combat activity, and
5 then I returned again to the zone of combat action.
6 Q. Can you tell us the 30th of September of which year and which
7 paragraph does this apply to?
8 A. The 30th of September, 1992. I apologise. I will have to take
9 out a different -- or, rather, I'll have to take out my statement.
10 Q. Is it paragraph 7?
11 A. Just a moment. Paragraph 7, yes.
12 Q. Where were you in combat at the time?
13 A. I was in the municipality of Milici, because the Muslim forces
14 led by Naser Oric attacked the village of Podrinje out of Srebrenica.
15 Q. Thank you. The funeral of those who were killed taking place on
16 the 30th, was it in the area where you were deployed?
17 A. You mean the Serbs that were killed? Well, it was not in the
18 area of my immediate deployment, but it was in the area of responsibility
19 of my brigade.
20 Q. Thank you. You came for the funeral. How long did you stay for?
21 A. A very short time. After the funeral mass I went to the
22 territory of the Milici municipality.
23 Q. Taking this into consideration, does the rest of the statement
24 faithfully reflect what you told the Defence team?
25 A. Yes.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Excellencies, I tender this
2 statement into evidence pursuant to Rule 92 ter. And Mr. Robinson will
3 present the documents.
4 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. We're offering four
5 associated exhibits and none of them are on our Rule 65 ter list as we
6 hadn't interviewed General Andric at the time that list was filed, so we
7 ask that they be added.
8 JUDGE KWON: Four documents.
9 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct. If you're looking at our revised
10 filing for this Rule 92 ter, it's the first four documents listed in the
12 JUDGE KWON: Could you name them?
13 MR. ROBINSON: Yes. The first one is 1D10110.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
15 MR. ROBINSON: The second is 1D09090.
16 JUDGE KWON: The third one.
17 MR. ROBINSON: The third is 02604. And the final one is 21902.
18 JUDGE KWON: Any objections, Ms. Pack?
19 MS. PACK: No objection.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We will admit the statement as well as the
21 four associated exhibits.
22 THE REGISTRAR: So 92 ter statement 1D9091 will be Exhibit D3886,
23 and the four associated exhibits will be Exhibits D3887 through to D3890
24 respectively, Your Honours.
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
1 Please continue, Karadzic.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I will now read a short summary of
3 the statement of General Svetozar Andric in English.
4 [In English] On May the 19th 1992, Svetozar Andric joined the VRS
5 and he was appointed commander of the Birac Brigade in Sekovici. He
6 remained in this position till 6th of August, 1995, when he took over the
7 post of the Chief of Staff of the Drina Corps. From March 1996 to
8 July 1997, Mr. Andric was the Chief of Staff of the 3rd Corps and from
9 July 1997 on, he was the Chief of Staff of the 5th Corps. In 1999, he
10 was appointed commander of the 5th Corps, and he held this position until
11 his retirement in 2002. The Birac brigade was formed on 19th of May,
12 1992, from parts of the units of the Territorial Defence Municipal Staff
13 from the area of Birac. The brigade was organised exclusively on a
14 territorial principle, since platoons, companies, and battalions were
15 formed primarily from the local able-bodied men. The Birac Brigade had
16 the zone of responsibility of a corps and it was therefore impossible to
17 control such territory effectively.
18 On 28th of May, 1992, Svetozar Andric ordered to move out the
19 local population of Muslim ethnicity which was to be done in an organised
20 way and in co-operation with the municipalities. This order was prompted
21 by the fact that the brigade zone of responsibility was full of numerous
22 armed individuals and local units under the command of the Muslim
23 Territorial Defence Staff and local Crisis Staffs. There were also
24 several Serbian paramilitary units that were not under the brigade's
25 control which consequently presented a threat for both the Serbian and
1 Muslim residents. The order to move out residents referred only to those
2 Muslims who expressed their wish to move out. The request to move out
3 was often motivated by fear of retaliation on the part of the Serbs
4 evicted from the Tuzla basins after 15th of May, 1992. The security
5 issue was impossible to control due to the large size of the brigade's
6 zone of responsibility and to the fact that all military units were
7 engaged on the first line. It is for these very reasons that local
8 civilian authorities also adopted the decision to organise the transfer
9 of the Muslim civilians.
10 On 31st of May, 1992, Svetozar Andric ordered that a camp be
11 established in Vlasenica stressing that international rules must be
12 applied and forbidding any ill-treatment or liquidation of the prisoners.
13 On 7th of June, 1992, the commander of the Eastern Bosnian Corps, of
14 which Birac Brigade was part, ordered the respect of the Geneva
15 Conventions with regard to the prisoners of war and strictly forbade any
16 kind of ill-treatment of the civilians. Mr. Andric did not know that on
17 30th of September, 1992, prisoners of war were allegedly liquidated in
18 Susica camp. The Birac Brigade had neither the responsibility nor the
19 strength to protect the prisoners of war over a prolonged period of time.
20 In December 1994, four-month truce was signed and until
21 April 1995. The Muslims took advantage of this period of truce to
22 additionally arm themselves with the help of the Islamic countries and to
23 plan large-scale offensives which they publicly announced in spring 1995.
24 Not waiting for the agreed and signed truce period to expire, the Muslim
25 commands issued an order to the forces of the BH Army to launch an
1 offensive on Majevica, Ozren and Vlasic. The VRS respected the truce and
2 was in the state of strategic defensive thus managing to crush the
3 attack. In early June 1995, the Muslims launched an offensive from the
4 direction of Tuzla and Kladanj towards Srebrenica and Zepa. During the
5 attack on the village of Zelina, Mr. Andric's house was burned together
6 with the whole Serbian village of 150 houses.
7 After the horrific crimes committed again the Serbian people in
8 1992 and early 1993 in the eastern part of Birac and central Podrinje,
9 the Muslims withdrew in the general area of Srebrenica municipality.
10 The international community proclaimed Srebrenica and
11 subsequently also Zepa a protected zone, but UNPROFOR did nothing to
12 carry out the demilitarisation of the area. The accord on
13 demilitarisation and the agreement reached by General Mladic and
14 General Halilovic on 8th of May, 1993, strictly forbade any kind of
15 military operation. Nevertheless, in full sight of the UNPROFOR forces
16 Muslims planned their combat activities within the enclave and carried
17 them outside of the protected zone. During the combat actions, they
18 disarmed by the force a part of UNPROFOR forces and used the stolen
19 equipment against Serbs -- Serbian soldiers. Srebrenica and Zepa were
20 supposed to be demilitarised zones and they were only formally and the
21 VRS simply had to take some measures.
22 The operation against Srebrenica and Zepa was launched on
23 5th of July, 1995. On 11th of July, Mladic, Pandurevic, Krstic, and
24 Blagojevic held a meeting at the Bratunac Brigade command. The only
25 decision made at this meeting was to continue operations towards Zepa and
1 there was no mention of any liquidation or relocation of local
2 population. Svetozar Andric did not have the impression that those
3 present at the meeting had informed President Karadzic about the events
4 in Srebrenica. Mr. Andric never heard General Krstic speak to anyone
5 about the unlawful killing of the prisoners of war in Srebrenica.
6 And that is a short summary. [Interpretation] I have only one
7 question which will perhaps make it easier for us to understand.
8 MR. KARADZIC:
9 Q. General, in relation to Vlasenica, where is Milici located and
10 where is Susica? Is that in the same direction or --
11 A. Susica or, rather, the collection centre of Susica lies between
12 Sekovici and Vlasenica.
13 Q. And Milici where you were deployed?
14 A. Milici is situated in the direction of Srebrenica.
15 Q. Is that on the same side or on the opposite side?
16 A. On the opposite side.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have no further
18 questions for the General at this time.
19 JUDGE KWON: General Andric, as you have noted, your evidence in
20 chef in this case has been admitted in writing, that is, through your
21 written statement in lieu of your oral testimony, and you will now be
22 cross-examined by the representative of the Office of the Prosecutor.
23 However, given the timing, we will adjourn for today and continue on
24 Monday at 9.00. I'd like to advise you in the meantime you're not
25 supposed to discuss with anybody else about your testimony. Do you
1 understand that, sir?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Tieger.
4 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Mr. President. One quick housekeeping
5 matter. I think in his haste to complete the process Mr. Mitchell did
6 not tender 65 ter 25423, which was the questions about which were
7 commenced on page 49 and continued on to page 50 of the transcript. It
8 was an article published in "Slobodna Bosna" on March 1996 that the
9 witness confirmed the information in.
10 MR. ROBINSON: We have no objection to the admission.
11 JUDGE KWON: Interview with Erdemovic. No objections.
12 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes. In light of the response, we'll admit it.
14 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P6451, Your Honours.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Microphone not activated]
16 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
17 JUDGE KWON: We didn't hear you, Mr. Karadzic.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I said that it would be helpful if
19 the Chamber was aware of the fact that this was not a Serb magazine as
20 Mr. Mitchell suggested. Rather, it is of an ultra anti-Serb position.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes. The hearing is adjourned.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 3.10 p.m.,
23 to be reconvened on Monday, the 22nd day
24 of July, 2013, at 9.00 a.m.