Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 13345

1 Monday, 31

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 [The witness entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 9.35 a.m.

6 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours.

7 Case number IT-95-14/2-T, the Prosecutor versus Dario

8 Kordic and Mario Cerkez.

9 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness take the

10 declaration.

11 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will

12 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the

13 truth.

14 JUDGE MAY: If you'd like to take a seat.


16 Examined by Ms. Somers:

17 Q. Colonel Williams, would you please state your

18 complete name, your rank, your career path, and your

19 education. "Career path" meaning your Bosniak

20 experience and any foreign experience to being in

21 Britain.

22 A. My full name is Peter Gage Williams. I am a

23 full Colonel in the British army. My educational

24 experience, I have a degree in history from the

25 University of Cambridge, and I have attended several

Page 13346

1 military staff colleges, most recently the Australian

2 Defense College in 1999, and I have served three times

3 in the former Yugoslavia, on the first occasion

4 between May -- well, November 1993 and May 1994.

5 Q. Do you have any specialised military

6 training?

7 A. In addition to being an infantry officer, I

8 have considerable experience including training courses

9 in the fields of intelligence and in liaison duties.

10 Q. Are you familiar with any foreign languages?

11 A. At one stage of my career I qualified as a

12 Russian interpreter.

13 Q. Would you describe your period of time in

14 Bosnia, from when to when, and the nature of the

15 operation?

16 A. I was the Commander Officer of a British Army

17 infantry battalion, the 1st Battalion, the Coldstream

18 Guards, which undertook an operation known in the

19 British military as Operation Grapple 3. This was from

20 the period the 8th of November, 1993 to the 8th of May,

21 1994. My battalion took over from the 1st Battalion,

22 the Prince of Wales' Own Regiment of Yorkshire.

23 Q. What was the mission of the battalion?

24 A. The mission of the battalion was to provide

25 support for the delivery of humanitarian assistance

Page 13347

1 both into and through Central Bosnia.

2 Q. Are you aware of any formula for the division

3 of such support?

4 A. There was no overall formula for this. The

5 rules and allocation of humanitarian aid was decided by

6 the UNHCR, which was the lead agency. For example, in

7 the area of Greater Vitez, the division was 70 percent

8 to the Croat population and 30 percent to the Muslim

9 minority. This was based on figures, an assessment by


11 Q. Are you aware of how the supplies came to

12 the -- how the humanitarian aid supplies came to the

13 population that was to be served? What was the route?

14 A. At the period of in time, there was only one

15 road, route into Central Bosnia. This came from Split,

16 through the Croatian border to the town of Tomislav

17 Grand and then moved from there up through the Vrbas

18 valley, Gornji Vakuf, and then on to the Lasva Valley

19 in the area of Vitez, and moved on to the UNHCR depot

20 in Zenica, from which it was then secondarily

21 distributed with security provide by UNPROFOR troops.

22 Q. Was there any other means of receiving this

23 food for the Muslim community?

24 A. There was no other way that any substantive

25 quantities of aid could reach Central Bosnia other than

Page 13348

1 along this one route.

2 Q. Was your battalion aware of any reports as to

3 other means for the Croat community to receive

4 assistance?

5 A. Although we had no physical proof of this, it

6 was undoubtedly a fact that there was black

7 marketeering that was bringing goods, particularly fuel

8 and cigarettes, into the area of Kiseljak. This was

9 coming up through the Republika Srpska, the Serb-held

10 areas of Bosnia, and then on occasion some of this fuel

11 and other supplies appeared to be making its way into

12 the Vitez Croat area, although I would hasten to say

13 that none of this seemed to be benefiting the general

14 population, Croat population of the area.

15 Q. Who was it benefiting, do you know?

16 A. I can only assume it was benefiting the

17 leadership. For example, on one occasion, we were

18 forced to investigate the theft of nearly 36 tonnes or

19 some 36 tonnes of fuel that had been brought under U.N.

20 auspices from Kiseljak to Busovaca.

21 Q. Are you aware of any price ranges for fuel in

22 the Kiseljak area? Did any figures come to your

23 attention?

24 A. It was reputed, although, obviously, we

25 didn't need to buy fuel and so had no proof of this

Page 13349

1 ourselves, it was reputed that the fuel in Kiseljak

2 area was not dissimilarly priced from fuel in

3 Herzegovina and Croatia proper.

4 THE INTERPRETER: Could we ask the witness to

5 slow down, please.

6 Q. I would ask the Registrar to distribute to

7 the witness and to all others in the courtroom

8 appropriate the packet of exhibits to which I will make

9 reference by exhibit number and date.

10 Colonel Williams, before you is a packet of

11 documents, which you have seen before, and have

12 indicated that these documents relate to your period of

13 time, and in fact your mission in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

14 And relative to questions, I will ask you, please, to

15 look for documents, and I will just ask you to

16 highlight a few points in them.

17 If you would please look for what is 17

18 November, 1993, marked Z1308.1, and also pull Z1322.1,

19 which is 2 December, and Z1323.1, which is 6 December.

20 Some of the figures with whom you had to deal, with

21 whom your battalion, if not you yourself, had to deal,

22 are referred to in the various documents, which I have

23 asked you to take a look at. In the document Z1308.1,

24 under the Vitez entry, there are comments about Mario

25 Cerkez. Are you familiar with the role that Mario

Page 13350

1 Cerkez was to have played?

2 A. I am familiar with his role, yes.

3 Q. Are you also familiar --

4 JUDGE MAY: Just a moment.

5 MS. SOMERS: Sorry.


7 MS. SOMERS: Thank you.

8 Q. In that same milinfosum, there is a reference

9 in paragraph 3 under the Vitez section to a Chris

10 Wilson. Are you familiar with Chris Wilson?

11 A. No, I had no dealings with this person.

12 Q. Thank you. The next document was from 2

13 December, 1322.1. Again, another personality in the

14 area was Ivica Rajic. And the comment on the third

15 page would be under Busovaca, point 14. Did you have

16 any personal dealings with Ivica Rajic, or was this

17 information simply brought to your attention because

18 you were the Commanding Officer?

19 A. I had no dealings with Ivica Rajic. This was

20 simply brought to my attention as Commanding Officer.

21 Q. That he was back in his --

22 A. Allegedly, he was back in the area.

23 Q. In his area. Thank you very much.

24 And then the December 6th document, 1323.1,

25 paragraph 5 under the Vitez entry. There is a passage

Page 13351

1 which indicates that there was difficulty in getting

2 past certain points along Route Diamond, and the

3 authority of Mario Cerkez was invoked by locals. Was

4 it common, in your understanding, to have general

5 orders less regarded than orders by local officials?

6 A. If I may, I would point out that the crossing

7 to Kruscica was not on Route Diamond --

8 Q. Excuse me.

9 A. -- per se. Nevertheless, there were

10 difficulties on occasion at checkpoints because, either

11 the message that had been passed down from the chain of

12 command, either the message had not arrived at the

13 checkpoint, or, possibly, there was activity at the

14 checkpoint that was of a more locally controlled

15 nature.

16 Q. Therefore, the entry that the HVO troops

17 stated that they would only take orders from Mario

18 Cerkez, Commander of Viteska HVO Brigade, was not

19 uncommon?

20 A. It was a particular problem in the Kruscica

21 area. In most other areas, I would submit that the --

22 particularly on the HVO side, the chain of command was

23 normally successful in the transmission of its orders

24 to individual checkpoints. This particular front line

25 was throughout the period of fighting a particularly

Page 13352

1 difficult one, to achieve crossings by United Nations,

2 liaison officers, and indeed this continued for some

3 time after the ceasefire between the HVO and the

4 Bosnian Army.

5 Q. You had occasion to meet Colonel Blaskic

6 during your tenure there. Could you describe the types

7 of meetings and the frequency of your meetings?

8 A. I met Colonel Blaskic probably on half a

9 dozen or more occasions. He was clearly the Military

10 Commander of a tactical type within the Central Bosnian

11 area, in particular the Vitez pocket where we were

12 based. And I met him more often than not in the Hotel

13 Vitez, which played a war headquarters role, as far as

14 we could ascertain, within the Vitez area.

15 Q. Did you have occasion to meet with Colonel

16 Kordic -- with Mr. Kordic and Colonel Blaskic at the

17 same time?

18 A. On a number of occasions, I would suspect

19 three or possibly four occasions, I met Mr. Kordic when

20 Colonel Blaskic was also present.

21 Q. What were your observations, if you have any,

22 about the nature of the relationship, in terms of

23 authority, whom over whom?

24 A. It had been brought to my attention by

25 Colonel Duncan, my predecessor, and it was very much my

Page 13353

1 impression as well, that in the presence of Mr. Kordic,

2 Colonel Blaskic played a deferential role and always

3 looked up to Mr. Kordic as if he was in charge.

4 Q. What was your impression of Colonel Blaskic's

5 leadership style?

6 A. Colonel Blaskic, a relatively young man to be

7 in command of such a large area, and I would describe

8 his leadership style as being of a very formal nature.

9 He was not leading -- in my view -- by example, but

10 more by sheer authority of his position. He did not

11 feel the need, I felt, to -- in comparison to his

12 Deputy, Colonel Filipovic, to try to lead by personal

13 example.

14 Q. Turning your attention to 16 November 1993,

15 and asking you to look at documents which would be from

16 16 November 93, Z1305.2, and 1305 -- I think we'll

17 start with 1305.2.

18 Can you describe, please, the meeting, which

19 is the subject of the particular milinfosum?

20 A. This is the meeting with Mr. Kordic.

21 Q. What was discussed --

22 JUDGE MAY: What is the reference, please, on

23 the document to the meeting?

24 MS. SOMERS: One moment, please. It would be

25 on page 2, the Busovaca area as discussed.

Page 13354

1 JUDGE MAY: Page 2.

2 MS. SOMERS: Page 2 of the document.

3 Q. Additionally, to facilitate perhaps a

4 transition, if I could ask everyone to take out from

5 November 16th, Z1305.4, which will have use elsewhere

6 as well.

7 I would like to ask your impression of

8 anything peculiar or that struck you as unusual about

9 the seating arrangement at these meetings, and

10 particularly this meeting.

11 A. On this occasion, Mr. Kordic was accompanied

12 by Mr. Kostroman. Mr. Kordic was very much in control,

13 and as on other occasions, when Colonel Blaskic was

14 present as well, Mr. Kordic always sat in the centre

15 and was with the other members on his flanks,

16 demonstrating, I believe, the fact that he was in

17 charge.

18 Q. Do you recall how Colonel Kordic was dressed

19 on that occasion?

20 A. On this occasion, Mr. Kordic was wearing

21 military-style camouflage clothing, in particular a

22 camouflage waistcoat. On this occasion, indeed any

23 occasion I recall, he was definitely wearing an HVO arm

24 patch on his arm.

25 Q. In general, when you saw him, how was he

Page 13355

1 dressed? In general.

2 A. In general, during the period of the armed

3 conflict here in Central Bosnia, I never saw him other

4 than dressed in what I would describe as a uniform.

5 Q. One of the topics for discussion at this

6 meeting concerned the Vitezit factory. Can you give

7 some background to the problems that were posed

8 specifically to the British Battalion with this

9 factory?

10 A. The Vitezit factory is a large complex just

11 to the south of the Vitez town itself and was the major

12 explosives factory located within Bosnia-Herzegovina.

13 It contained many thousands of tonnes, so it was told

14 us to, many thousands of tonnes of manufactured

15 explosive, and was within the tower, the steam towers

16 or chimney. It was in easy sight of all three of the

17 U.N. bases that were in the general area of Vitez.

18 Q. Are you able to give an idea, roughly, in

19 kilometres the distances of various bases and UNPROFOR

20 interests from the factory?

21 A. The nearest base was the battalion logistic

22 centre, which was within about one and a half to two

23 kilometres from the factory, but the main headquarters

24 of the battalion was in Stara Bila, which is about four

25 kilometres, I would think, from the factory complex.

Page 13356

1 And the Dutch-Netherlands transport company was in

2 Santici, which is a little further, perhaps as much as

3 five kilometres.

4 Q. Who was controlling this particular factory?

5 A. The factory was controlled by the HVO.

6 Q. And what were the particular concerns about

7 the factory that had been brought to your attention?

8 A. It was brought to my attention, as we arrived

9 in Central Bosnia, in the middle of November, that

10 there was a threat that the factory would be destroyed

11 in the event of the Bosnian Army capturing the Vitez

12 area.

13 Q. There are a number of documents which are

14 relevant to this particular issue, and one of them I

15 have already asked you to take out, it is 1305.4. I

16 can ask at this point the relevant documents to the

17 next few questions are Z1299.1, which is 12 November,

18 1993; Z1315.2, which is 22 November. Then there is

19 summary of Z1315.3. It's a bit large, and it may be

20 toward the back. It's unclear how it's dated. If it

21 is not in the packet, my apologies. We'll have to

22 supply it later. I'm sorry. It is in the packet

23 Ms. Verhaag informs me. Then Z1290 --

24 JUDGE MAY: You'll have to wait a moment

25 while we find these.

Page 13357

1 MS. SOMERS: 1290.1.

2 JUDGE MAY: You referred to 1315.3.

3 MS. SOMERS: Yes. That is of -- it is a

4 summary of incidents. It is undated. It just says

5 "November 1993," and in the upper corner, by hand, it

6 is written "7 June, 1998." But it is the 1993

7 information which is relevant.

8 JUDGE MAY: We don't have this.

9 MS. SOMERS: I apologise. It is probably

10 behind the 13 November -- I'm sorry, behind 1315.2.

11 Right behind 1315.2. There is, additionally, behind

12 these, 1290.1, which is a letter on letterhead from the

13 Slobodan Princip Seljo factory.

14 JUDGE MAY: We have it now.

15 MS. SOMERS: That should be dated the 9th of

16 November. Then 1315.4, which is an assessment of

17 threat. It is a packet of 22 November. Then 1318.1

18 from the 28th of November.

19 JUDGE MAY: Do you know, Mr. Nice, I've

20 been -- throughout this case I've been concerned with

21 the way that these documents are being produced. Now,

22 I understand, of course, that you have a mass of

23 documents which you're going to look through and having

24 them produced, but the way that these documents are

25 handled in this Tribunal is far from satisfactory.

Page 13358

1 The Court should not have to scrabble through

2 the documents trying to find them. They should be

3 produced in a bundle and handed in.

4 You are familiar with such a scheme, and I

5 don't understand why in this Tribunal it can't be

6 done.

7 MR. NICE: Generally it is done and generally

8 they come to you, think I, in an orderly way. I

9 suspect that on this particular occasion some other

10 documents had to be added at a late minute and that's

11 why they're not strictly in the order of presentation.

12 Most of them are but there are one or two out of order.

13 I happen to know that the staff concerned

14 have been working over the weekend. And, of course,

15 documents can't be produced until the witnesses are

16 spoken to and have the matters discussed with them.

17 JUDGE MAY: I have no doubt that people have

18 been working very hard. It is the method of

19 presentation which concerns me. Perhaps you could take

20 this back to the Office of the Prosecutor. The

21 documents should be produced, particularly a bundle

22 like this, in a folder or a lever-arch file, so that

23 the Court and everybody else, the witness and the

24 Defence, can find their way through them.

25 MR. NICE: Insofar as their shortcomings

Page 13359

1 today, we will do our best to ensure they don't occur

2 again, and I'm sorry you have been inconvenienced

3 today.

4 JUDGE MAY: Not just today. I've noticed

5 this and in other cases. It seems to be the practice

6 that documents are produced out of order and then the

7 Court has to try and find its way around.

8 Yes, Ms. Somers.

9 MS. SOMERS: May I please apologise

10 personally. Mr. Nice was really not a part of this

11 particular plan. May I explain to you that the reason

12 simply is that documents cover more than one issue, so

13 we felt that the only way that we could present them so

14 they wouldn't get lost is chronologically. Excuse us.

15 JUDGE MAY: There is no need to apologise

16 personally, Ms. Somers. It's a general comment and

17 that's why it was directed at Mr. Nice.

18 MS. SOMERS: I understand. Thank you, Your

19 Honour. Again, continuing in a bit of a wade-through

20 but important, is -- I think I left off at the 28th of

21 November, which was a threat assessment document,

22 Z1318.1. And Z1305.4, which goes back -- I believe it

23 was possibly discussed earlier. It is the 16th of

24 November -- yes. I had mentioned it. You already have

25 it.

Page 13360

1 THE INTERPRETER: Could you slow down,

2 Ms. Somers, please.

3 MS. SOMERS: Then Z1320.2, which is

4 30 November. And that should be sufficient for this

5 line of questions.

6 Additionally, there is a video which we have

7 presented to the audio section, and I would like to

8 show it before we get into any further discussion, but

9 I am obligated to inform the Chamber that it was

10 produced by ITN out of London with a number of extreme

11 conditions for the -- generally for the Tribunal,

12 limiting copying, distribution. I had assured them

13 that I would make it known. So if I can submit it to

14 the registry for the record, I'd appreciate that.

15 If we can ask that the video be presented.

16 MR. SAYERS: Mr. President, may I inquire if

17 there is a transcript available for everybody's

18 review?

19 MS. SOMERS: No there's not. This was just

20 Your Honour.

21 [Videotape played]

22 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers,

23 could I ask you why there was no translation? Maybe

24 this question should be addressed to the Registrar.

25 There is no transcript, there is no translation. So I

Page 13361

1 don't consider this presentation to be normal, the way

2 in which this video has been presented. I am able to

3 follow in English, of course, but still, sometimes I do

4 need a translation, for the sake of precision. And I

5 find that this way of presenting the video is not

6 normal.

7 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, may I address

8 that. Our apologies. However, we received this

9 particular video Friday from ITN. It was a bit

10 difficult to obtain it, for some logistical reasons,

11 and we simply were unavailable to submit it timely. If

12 the Court would grant us leave to provide a transcript

13 for subsequent use, we would be happy to do so. And we

14 had no opportunity even to have it translated into

15 Croatian as well. Our apologies.

16 Again, it was a timing issue. The first time

17 I saw it was 2 on Friday afternoon.

18 JUDGE MAY: While we are dealing with that,

19 what was the date? I may have missed it. What was the

20 date of the broadcast?


22 Q. Colonel Williams, my understanding is this is

23 22nd of November, 1993?

24 A. That's correct

25 MS. SOMERS: Is that acceptable to Your

Page 13362

1 Honour Judge Bennouna, to provide a -- thank you.

2 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Yes. I am

3 waiting for the transcript, which must be a complete

4 transcript of what was said in the video.

5 MS. SOMERS: Of course. Thank you very much.

6 JUDGE MAY: Have we a number for this.

7 MS. SOMERS: I'm sorry. Z1315.5.

8 Q. Can you comment on what was just shown, and

9 what measures were taken by the British Battalion to

10 assess the real threat, if it were in fact real, and to

11 deal with it in an authoritative manner?

12 A. The film, as seen, you will notice that under

13 normal British rules I was not encouraged to be

14 doomsday-ish about this threat in public, because this

15 would obviously lead to confusion and unnecessary fear

16 amongst the families of soldiers back in Germany.

17 Nevertheless, an opportunity arose to visit

18 the factory, in fact on the day that this very

19 broadcast was made back in Britain on the 22nd of

20 November, and I visited the factory with a qualified

21 explosives ordnance disposal officer, Captain Bassett.

22 The reason we visited is outlined in the letter from

23 the factory. The factory claimed that there was a

24 risk, unless fuel was provided by the United Nations,

25 that the explosives processes would become unsafe.

Page 13363

1 Q. Is that the letter which is marked Z1290.1

2 from the 9th of November, 1993, the top of which is on

3 the letterhead from the factory?

4 A. It is indeed.

5 Q. What was the response to the request for fuel

6 and to the request for evacuation?

7 A. In order to respond to this request, we asked

8 to be given the opportunity to inspect the factory and

9 its explosive manufacturing processes, so that our own

10 experts from the Royal Engineers could make an

11 assessment as to the necessity of providing such fuel.

12 This inspection visit occurred on the 22nd of November,

13 in the company of the director of the factory, but

14 there were no HVO personnel present during this

15 inspection.

16 We found the factory to indeed be prepared

17 for destruction, but the technical assessment was that

18 the processes themselves would remain safe, and that it

19 was, we believed, an attempt to get United Nations to

20 provide fuel that would then be misdirected to other

21 purposes. For this reason, the request for fuel from

22 the United Nations was subsequently turned down.

23 Q. Which document contains the assessment of the

24 British Battalion authorities as to the reality of the

25 threat?

Page 13364

1 A. There's an initial technical assessment,

2 which is Z1315.4.

3 Q. And then is there a subsequent?

4 A. Subsequent to that there is Z1318.1, which

5 was the final technical assessment, what we send on to

6 our own headquarters.

7 Q. It appears from the milinfosums that are

8 before you, that the threat was repeated on the 12th of

9 November, 1993. And in Z1299.1 there is a reference,

10 under "Vitez," paragraph number 5, to a comment by

11 Cerkez. In connection with the Vitezit ammunition

12 factory, Cerkez claimed that if the factory would be

13 blown up, it would have little effect on BritBat.

14 Did that appear to be true?

15 A. The question as to whether there would be

16 little effect was really based, principally, on whether

17 or not the warning that had been promised by the HVO

18 would be forthcoming. But in truth, had there been

19 little or no warning, there would, as per the technical

20 assessments, have been a considerable risk, not only to

21 the U.N. military, but more particularly, perhaps, to

22 the civil population in the area.

23 Q. We have seen that there was comment on the

24 matter by Blaskic, Cerkez. And turning to Z1305.4,

25 which is an LO report of the meeting of the 16th

Page 13365

1 November. What was the general comment by Mr. Kordic?

2 A. Mr. Kordic confirmed what had already been

3 mentioned by Colonel Blaskic and others, that indeed

4 there was -- there would be a requirement to destroy

5 the factory, albeit attempts would be made to minimise

6 the risk to the United Nations forces, but that it

7 could not be lost.

8 Q. Okay. And did Mr. Kordic comment about

9 whether or not there would be any efforts to proceed

10 with this or to avoid it?

11 A. I don't think he commented on this occasion,

12 as to whether it was more or less likely, but the

13 fundamental issue here was that the Bosnian Army had

14 several munitions factories in the area, and Bugogno

15 and in Novi Travnik, and the one missing link in their

16 own munition system was the provision of explosives.

17 And that, of course, would have been -- that missing

18 link would have been filled, had the Bosnian army

19 seized the ammunition factory, the explosives factory

20 in Vitezit. And it is that reason, as per the words of

21 Colonel Blaskic on the television clip there, that if

22 the factory was lost to the Bosnian Army, they would

23 then be well placed to carry on the war with vigour

24 against the Serbs.

25 Q. On the milinfosum dated 30 November, which is

Page 13366

1 Z1320.2. On the second page under "Busovaca," page 2,

2 paragraph 9, there is a comment about the BiH using

3 chemical shells. Was there any investigation by

4 BritBat, and if so, what were the results or

5 conclusions?

6 A. Claims of this sort were made on several

7 occasions, and on every occasion that they were made,

8 we, in BritBat, volunteered to conduct a technical

9 assessment of the alleged incidents. And on those

10 occasions that these investigations were both permitted

11 and carried out, our own explosives experts claimed

12 that there was no evidence of chemically-filled shells

13 being used.

14 Q. Was there a request about evacuation of the

15 civilian population, and if so, from whom and what

16 area, what radius was covered by that?

17 A. We were not aware of any request to evacuate

18 civilian population with respect to the Vitezit

19 factory.

20 Q. Did you communicate with any superior

21 officers about the threat, and if so, what was the

22 nature of the communication, and what were the results?

23 A. We were so concerned by the repeated voicings

24 of this threat to explode the factory, that we passed

25 our concern in a letter to the chief of staff of

Page 13367

1 Bosnia-Herzegovina command, pointing out that although

2 we were not lawyers, we were convinced that to do -- if

3 the factory were indeed blown up, it would surely

4 constitute some sort of a war crime, and indeed even

5 the threat of doing so might, perhaps, be seen as in

6 some way in contravention of some legal provision.

7 It was our concern -- we asked the chief of

8 staff to write to Mr. Kordic in order to voice the

9 concerns of the U.N.

10 Q. Did Brigadier Ramsay involve himself at any

11 point in the issue of the explosives factory?

12 A. He did.

13 Q. If I can ask those who have the documents,

14 please to pull a document from 2 January, Z1347.1,

15 labelled "warning," with the seal -- an HVO seal on

16 it. Then from 4 January, Z1349.2. It appears to be to

17 Brigadier Ramsay. Then there is another document, a

18 letter, from Brigadier Ramsay of 4 January. The top

19 probably has the Croatian date. It is addressed to

20 Colonel Blaskic. It is 1349.3.

21 If these documents are familiar to you, could

22 you please discuss them?

23 A. These documents are familiar. Indeed, they

24 lead me to point out that I was incorrect a moment ago

25 in suggesting that Brigadier Ramsay had written to

Page 13368

1 Mr. Kordic. Quite clearly, from the documents, the

2 correspondence went to Colonel Blaskic. But, indeed,

3 the correspondence did take place between Brigadier

4 Ramsay and Colonel Blaskic, warning him that the

5 destruction of this factory would indeed constitute a

6 war crime, in the opinion of headquarters

7 Bosnia-Herzegovina command.

8 Q. Thank you. Just turning your attention to

9 the warning letter from Colonel Blaskic, from the 2nd,

10 which is 1347.1. There is a reference in paragraph 6

11 to an evacuation. Do you recall this particular

12 request?

13 A. There was never a request to the British

14 Battalion to undertake any evacuation of the

15 population. Indeed, this point is made, I believe, in

16 the letter from -- in the second paragraph in the

17 letter from Brigadier Ramsay, that such an evacuation

18 lay outside the mandate of UNPROFOR.

19 Q. And that would be the document of 1349.3, the

20 letter from Brigadier Ramsay of the 4th of January.

21 Thank you. Did you ever hear the threat

22 repeated by Colonel Blaskic to you after these

23 incidents?

24 A. After this time, no, Colonel Blaskic never

25 raised this issue again with the UNPROFOR forces in the

Page 13369

1 Vitez area.

2 Q. Are you aware of whether or not Colonel

3 Blaskic was present in Central Bosnia when this

4 correspondence was undertaken?

5 A. There is reason -- we have reason to believe

6 that Colonel Blaskic left the Vitez area by helicopter

7 at night, probably on the night of the 2nd, 3rd of

8 January, and that he was later reported by the Croatian

9 press, meeting the HVO commander in chief, General

10 Roso, and we believed that he returned again by night,

11 probably on or about the 13th of January.

12 Q. And is this the information that's referred

13 to in milinfosum Z1348 from the 3rd of January -- I'm

14 sorry, 1348.1, 3 January, paragraph 3, under the

15 heading "Vitez"?

16 A. This is correct. This is the first report

17 that Colonel Blaskic had more than likely left the

18 area.

19 Q. Thank you. There was a meeting at which

20 Dario Kordic, Ignac Kostroman, Ivan Santic, Tihomir

21 Blaskic, and yourself were present on the 3rd of

22 February. Looking at the milinfosum -- I believe it is

23 a milinfosum -- from the 3rd of February, which is

24 Z1365.1. There is a comment by Kostroman that I would

25 ask you to comment on, if you recall it.

Page 13370

1 A. To put the meeting in perspective, General

2 Cot, who was the commander of UNPROFOR within the whole

3 of Yugoslavia, at that time visited Vitez. I took him

4 on the 2nd of February to meet Colonel Cuskic in

5 Travnik, who was the local Bosnian army commander, and

6 for reasons of balance, and I believed good manners,

7 invited Mr. Kordic and his cohorts to meet with General

8 Cot the following day. A meeting was held, and once

9 again Mr. Kordic clearly played the part of the leader

10 in this group, sitting in the centre, speaking first.

11 And then Mr. Kostroman made some remarks concerning the

12 Vitezit factory. He repeated the threat to destroy the

13 ammunition factory despite the consequences, and then

14 made remarks about 7.000 Mujahedin being present in

15 Central Bosnia.

16 Q. I'm asking you to look at a letter, Z1363,

17 which is dated 25 January. The translation should

18 appear on top. It is from an Anto Puljic. Two points

19 about this letter, one of which is that it again

20 concerns mention of the Vitezit or the Princip

21 factory. The second is the persons to whose attention

22 the letter on this subject matter was sent. Would you

23 read them, kindly, into the record?

24 A. The letter has been sent by Mr. Puljic, first

25 to Mr. Sliskovic, who is described as the assistant

Page 13371

1 commander for security.

2 Q. Mr. A. Sliskovic?

3 A. Mr. A. Sliskovic, the Assistant Ccommander for

4 security in the Vitez military district. And the other

5 addressee is Mr. Colonel Dario Kordic, who is described

6 in the letter as the Assistant Chief of the main staff

7 of the Armed Forces of the Croatian Republic of

8 Herceg-Bosna.

9 Q. At that -- it says Mr. Colonel Dario Kordic?

10 A. Originally it would appear to say Gospodin

11 Pukovni.

12 Q. At that time, who was the Chief of the HVO

13 staff?

14 A. At that time, I assume that this was

15 General Roso.

16 Q. On the issue of casualty evacuation as well

17 as generally on the issue of agreements for delivery of

18 humanitarian aid, can you recall, about the 2nd of

19 February, was there to be an evacuation of

20 non-combatants and did it take place?

21 A. There had been considerable attempts to

22 ensure that injured persons, non-military persons or

23 persons of non-military age, could be removed from the

24 area of Stari Vitez, which was a besieged enclave,

25 Muslim enclave, within the Vitez -- the Croat-dominated

Page 13372

1 Vitez pocket.

2 We had tried on a number of occasions to

3 remove injured civilians from Stari Vitez. More often

4 than not we were unsuccessful. On this occasion, after

5 some considerable dealings, we had an arrangement that

6 on the 2nd of February, we could move both injured

7 persons from Stari Vitez to Zenica, and from the Croat

8 hospital at Nova Bila to the Croat medical facilities

9 in Kiseljak. This was also linked in with the delivery

10 of aid on the 70/30 proportion as arranged by the


12 Q. Did the parties, especially the Croats,

13 honour this agreement?

14 A. The agreement, having been laboured over for

15 many days, on the 2nd of February there was a problem.

16 Q. Could you discuss the problem?

17 A. The -- I was informed that there was a

18 problem and moved as fast as I could to the HVO

19 headquarters in the Hotel Vitez. As I arrived, it was

20 brought to my attention that Colonel Blaskic drove off

21 from the back door in his jeep. I was then confronted

22 by his deputy, Colonel Filipovic, and Colonel Filipovic

23 told me that there could be no casualty evacuation on

24 that date, that there could only be the movement of

25 humanitarian aid.

Page 13373

1 Q. What was your response to that partial

2 fulfilment?

3 A. I was horrified and told Colonel Filipovic

4 that I knew he had been left to pass on an unacceptable

5 message by Colonel Blaskic, whom I had seen leaving at

6 the back door; that I could tell from the excuse that

7 he suggested that he didn't believe the excuse either,

8 and I gave him until midday to resolve the problem and

9 turn back on both the movement of the casualties and of

10 the humanitarian aid.

11 Q. Were you willing to only deliver the aid or

12 to do partial?

13 A. I suggested that the excuse given by

14 Colonel Filipovic was that it would be too dangerous

15 for the HVO forces to allow both aid and civilian

16 casualties to cross the front line out of Stari Vitez,

17 the casualties out, the aid in. This would be too

18 large a window and would be too dangerous for the HVO.

19 I suggested that the casualties were, therefore, more

20 important than the humanitarian aid, and that perhaps

21 we should only do the casualties that day and not do

22 the humanitarian aid. He told me that was an

23 unacceptable alternative.

24 Q. Would only the Muslim community have been

25 affected by the failure to deliver the humanitarian

Page 13374

1 aid, or would there also have been an impact on the

2 Croat community?

3 A. As on other occasions, I made it quite clear

4 that we not deliver aid simply to one community. We

5 were working under the instructions of UNHCR, and

6 either we would feed the entire municipality with both

7 its communities, Croat and Muslim, or we would feed no

8 one.

9 Q. What was the resolution, if any, by

10 Colonel Blaskic?

11 A. I was rung sometime before midday, and a

12 message was passed that Colonel Blaskic said that there

13 must have been a misunderstanding and that the movement

14 of both civilian casualties and humanitarian aid could

15 go ahead.

16 Q. Did there appear to you, from your

17 experience, that there was less incentive on the part

18 of the Croats with regard to casualty evacuation?

19 A. The -- I think both sides were very keen to

20 evacuate their casualties, which is quite

21 understandable. The difference is that unlike

22 humanitarian aid, where both parties were equally

23 handicapped and both equally eager to receive

24 humanitarian aid, in the case of casualties, the Croats

25 enjoyed a particular advantage.

Page 13375

1 Q. Which was?

2 A. The advantage was that unlike Stari Vitez, in

3 which there were 1.200 people and no medical doctors --

4 indeed I believe the only medical support available was

5 from a trained dental technician -- within the larger

6 Croat pocket there was an adequate hospital in Nova

7 Bila. For this reason, they had both good first-line

8 medical support in November Bila, and they also enjoyed

9 an advantage on the further evacuation of their

10 casualties.

11 Q. And what would that advantage have been?

12 A. The advantage was that there were flights by

13 Croatian army helicopters on a number of nights during

14 this period into the Vitez pocket, and these flights

15 allegedly brought in resupplies of one sort or another

16 from Herzegovina and took out the casualties. We could

17 only hear the helicopters coming and going, but it was

18 clear from visits to Nova Bila hospital by my liaison

19 officers that on the days following helicopter flights

20 there were very few people left in the hospital.

21 Q. Were these permissible, lawful helicopter

22 flights?

23 A. No. All these helicopter flights were --

24 THE INTERPRETER: Would counsel please pause

25 between answer and question for the translation. Thank

Page 13376

1 you.

2 A. If I could repeat myself. The flights were

3 illegal under the terms of the U.N. Security Council

4 resolution that had established a no-fly zone. And

5 even on those occasions when the Croat authorities had

6 sought permission under the no-fly regime, they had

7 been turned down, but, nevertheless, the flights went

8 ahead.

9 Q. Colonel, you indicated, I believe, that these

10 were Croatian helicopters. Are you suggesting they

11 were HV helicopters?

12 A. Clearly in the dark, it's very difficult to

13 tell where a helicopter came from. Nevertheless, we

14 believed that the HVO in itself had no helicopters,

15 that those helicopters that it was having the

16 opportunity to use were Croatian army helicopters, and

17 indeed on, I think, the 11th of March, we captured such

18 a helicopter when it landed illegally in Nova Bila.

19 Q. When you attempted to negotiate or deal with

20 the authorities, principally the HVO authorities, did

21 you find that there was an unconditional approach to

22 dealing?

23 A. I'm sorry, I don't understand.

24 Q. Was there something called the concept of

25 linkage attached to the dealings with the Croat

Page 13377

1 authorities?

2 A. This was not, of course, unique, I would

3 hasten to add, to the Croat authorities. It was also a

4 feature of dealings with the Muslim authorities, but it

5 was a particular problem where the Croat authorities

6 were concerned, in that reciprocal humanitarian aid

7 deliveries, for example, within the area of Novi

8 Travnik, would be linked to other things such as the

9 supply of water to Novi Travnik, which was beyond the

10 gift of the United Nations to provide water through

11 pipes to townships.

12 Q. I'm waiting for the interpreter. Was this an

13 ongoing scenario?

14 A. It was a continual and continuing problem

15 throughout the period before the ceasefire.

16 Q. There is a document, Z1364.4. It has only

17 "January 1994" on it. It is signed by a Major Tucker,

18 and it describes linkages in BritBat AOR. If you could

19 look at that, please. What is the significance of this

20 document?

21 A. Document was produced by Major Tucker, who

22 was my Operations Officer, and it was designed for

23 passage up the chain of command to explain to people

24 why nothing was ever as simple as perhaps it ought to

25 be, and that things quite often from beyond our own

Page 13378

1 area were impacting upon permission to carry out

2 perfectly legitimate and indeed much needed

3 humanitarian aid programmes.

4 For example, there were two -- there was a

5 helicopter held in Medjugorje, which is mentioned on

6 the second page of this document whereby the BiH Army

7 was refusing all manner of things, including prisoner

8 of war exchanges, until its helicopter was released.

9 But more immediately to us, there were issues within

10 the Vitez pocket, the area controlled by the Croats,

11 which were linked together. And as I've mentioned

12 already, the provision of water to Novi Travnik, the

13 Croat part of Novi Travnik, the non-delivery of water,

14 the interruption of supply was used as an excuse for

15 refusal to allow delivery of aid on occasion to Novi

16 Travnik.

17 Q. And what was the response, your response, to

18 such suggestions?

19 A. We clearly wished to delink things wherever

20 possible, and point out, as I said, that we were doing

21 everything we could to find what was the problem was

22 with the provision of water to Novi Travnik. It turned

23 out that there was a cast iron type of some antiquity

24 that had burst. The allegation by the Croat side that

25 this must be sabotage by the Muslims, did not appear to

Page 13379

1 be worthy of consideration. It was quite clearly metal

2 fatigue. And we then struggled for some weeks to get a

3 pipe of this diameter and type that we could place in

4 and restore the water. But in our opinion, the

5 interruption, the refusal to allow humanitarian aid

6 into both communities in Novi Travnik, because of the

7 interruption of the water supply, this was an

8 unacceptable linkage.

9 Q. On the 21st of February -- sorry, let the

10 interpreter catch up -- a meeting took place between

11 International Community representatives and

12 representatives of the HVO or the Bosnian Croat

13 government. If you could turn your attention to

14 Z1383.1, which is a milinfosum of 21 February, and

15 Z1383.2, which appears to be a petition from

16 21 February, signed by various members of the

17 International Community. If you could discuss the

18 circumstances surrounding the meeting and the

19 petition.

20 A. The petition, or demarche, perhaps more

21 technically, was one that was delivered both to the

22 Croat authorities. You have a copy of the original

23 document here. It's a draft, but it is what was handed

24 over. A similar document was also handed to Commander

25 Alagic, the Commander of the Bosnian Army, 3rd Corps.

Page 13380

1 At this stage, in the middle of February,

2 there were overwhelming problems along this one and

3 only route from Herzegovina, along which all the

4 humanitarian aid convoys were moving. Within the

5 Bosnian Army areas, there were problems with civilians

6 attacking convoys, hungry civilians attacking convoys,

7 hijacking loads, and there were other problems that

8 were being caused by the Croat authorities. These

9 included problems with snipers, particularly in the

10 area of Gornji Vakuf. And there were problems with

11 random harassing, artillery and mortar fire from HVO

12 held territory onto villages along this route.

13 And in the area of the Vitez pocket, there

14 were problems where the Bosnian Croat police

15 authorities were insisting on searching U.N. aid

16 vehicles, despite this being in contravention of the

17 agreements that the Croat authorities had signed up

18 to --

19 Q. This document is signed by yourself Larry

20 Hollingworth, who was -- if you can tell us?

21 A. This document was effectively an U.N. protest

22 to the Croat authorities, signed by myself as the local

23 military, U.N. military commander, by Mr. Hollingworth,

24 who was the head of the UNHCR regional office in

25 Zenica, and by Mr. J.F. Carter, who was the U.N. Civil

Page 13381

1 Affairs Officer, who worked in the area as my battalion

2 in Vitez.

3 Q. Did Sir Martin Garrod play any role at this

4 particular meeting, or was he essentially just

5 witnessing?

6 A. Sir Martin was effectively witnessing and

7 observing, but he was fully in accord with all the

8 points being made, and was very much a volunteer to

9 come to the meeting to see the protest passed to the

10 Croat authorities.

11 Q. What was the reaction by the Croat side and

12 undertakings, if any?

13 A. As it happened, the 21st of February was very

14 close to the ceasefire agreement, which occurred some

15 two days later. And we had probably left our protest a

16 little too late, with the benefit of hindsight.

17 Mr. Kordic listened to the protest and was -- I would

18 describe him as unmoved by it all, and just dismissed

19 most of it as being unimportant. Although his police

20 chief, Mr. Rajic, was very upset at the criticism of

21 the Croat police force, which I would point out was

22 generally a well-organised and well-disciplined

23 organisation, but on this occasion, I believe was

24 exceeding its authority.

25 Q. Had you ever discussed evacuations with

Page 13382

1 Mr. Kordic himself, medical evacuations?

2 A. We discussed medical evacuations on this

3 occasion on the 21st of February, but this was the

4 second significant occasion on which I had discussed

5 such evacuations with Mr. Kordic.

6 Q. What was the first one?

7 A. The first occasion was, I believe, on or

8 around the 1st of December, but certainly much earlier

9 during the period of armed conflict, when I had asked

10 him to agree to the movement of two wounded children

11 from Stari Vitez to the hospital in Zenica. And he had

12 rejected this.

13 Q. What was the ground for rejection?

14 A. Mr. Kordic suggested that the children could

15 go to the Croat medical facility in Nova Bila.

16 Q. And why could they not go to a facility in

17 Zenica?

18 A. Well, I suggested that no Muslim mother would

19 let her child out of Stari Vitez to go to a Croat

20 facility, and the Croat facility was not a first-rate

21 medical facility, whereas the hospital in Zenica was

22 both in an area controlled by the Bosnian government

23 and was a better hospital. And so I suggested that it

24 would be much more sensible, for the well-being of

25 these children, that they should move directly to

Page 13383

1 Zenica.

2 Q. And was there a stated reason why they should

3 not be moved to Zenica?

4 A. Mr. Kordic dismissed this by making what I

5 took to be a very strange political statement.

6 Q. Which was?

7 A. He said that it would be -- in any case, it

8 would be completely impossible for the children to go

9 to Zenica, because such a move would constitute

10 crossing an international border.

11 Q. From where to where?

12 A. He said this would be an international

13 crossing, from the Croat republic of Herceg-Bosna to

14 the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

15 Q. Are you aware if these children ever were

16 evacuated?

17 A. I can't say for certain whether these

18 children ever were evacuated. It was certainly not --

19 if they were evacuated, it was in no way as a result of

20 this meeting. My reaction to Mr. Kordic's statement

21 about the crossing of an international border, I still

22 recall my blood running cold and a ghastly feeling that

23 no argument was clearly going to be sufficient to get

24 these children to hospital.

25 Q. The other occasion involving the evacuation

Page 13384

1 of children, I believe was about the 21st of February,

2 when this issue arose. Was there any comment made to

3 you by Mr. Kordic about the evacuation of two Muslim

4 children?

5 A. Following the reading of the protest letter

6 that you have here, Mr. Kordic declared that now that

7 the business is done, let's have lunch. And I said

8 that we would like to see two children evacuated

9 immediately from Stari Vitez. He said that was

10 impossible. And I have to say I became rather angry.

11 Q. Returning to the issue of HV, or presumably

12 HV helicopter flights. Are you able to give any type

13 of history of the flights and what their purposes were,

14 if you recall?

15 A. The first flights that we had seen during our

16 time were in mid-November, and occurred in broad

17 daylight. One of them involved the dropping of bundles

18 of ammunition.

19 Q. Into which territory?

20 A. Obviously, the intention was to drop the

21 ammunition by parachute into the Croat held area, but

22 some of the bundles actually fell into the Bosnian Army

23 controlled area as well.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Ms. Somers. Sorry, I can't

25 see you. Could you just return to the statement made

Page 13385

1 by Mr. Kordic, that it was impossible to evacuate the

2 two children. I'd like to find out from the Colonel

3 whether he gave any explanation, any reason for the --

4 for this being impossible.

5 A. Your Honour, on that occasion, this was the

6 21st of February, the second occasion, no excuse was

7 given. And I realised that my plea was going to be

8 unsuccessful. But Sir Martin Garrod tried one last

9 time, appealing to Mr. Kordic's best nature, to allow

10 the evacuation of these children. Mr. Kordic replied

11 dismissively with the words to the effect of, "If these

12 two Muslim children are so important to you, you can

13 have them," with which everybody sat down to lunch.

14 And my Liaison Officer arranged their evacuation.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.


17 Q. Colonel Williams, the date of 21st February,

18 was there any particular international agreement that

19 was to be undertaken around that time or slightly

20 afterward?

21 A. As I stated, on the 23rd of February a

22 ceasefire agreement was signed in Zagreb, which then

23 came into effect on the 25th of February.

24 Q. And was the Washington Accord discussed at

25 all in any of these discussions that you and the

Page 13386

1 International Community members had with the HVO and

2 the Muslim group?

3 A. To be honest, at the time, from our, perhaps,

4 rather local perspective, a ceasefire was the most

5 important thing we were looking for. And there had

6 been many talks in Washington, Geneva and elsewhere,

7 that this was a concrete military target that we were

8 hoping for, which was a ceasefire. And so our focus

9 tended to be on the ceasefire agreement.

10 Q. However, this did predate the Washington

11 Agreement by not too much time; is that correct?

12 A. The ceasefire came into effect, I think, just

13 over two weeks before the actual political agreement

14 was made.

15 Q. And that agreement, effectively, put together

16 the Muslim-Croat federation; is that correct?

17 A. Indeed.

18 Q. Just let me take a minute to make sure I've

19 missed nothing.

20 Looking at Z1349.1, dated 5 January. On page

21 3, under "Busovaca," there is a comment concerning the

22 status of Kordic. Would you be able to comment on that

23 comment?

24 A. The document describes Mr. Kordic as Colonel

25 Kordic, a Vice-President of the HVO government/HDZ

Page 13387

1 representative. I would simply say that I -- during my

2 time, Mr. Kordic was never called Colonel Kordic in my

3 presence, nor indeed did he call himself Colonel

4 Kordic. I knew him then as I know him now, as

5 Mr. Kordic.

6 Q. Did you become aware of his acquiring another

7 role under Ante Roso?

8 A. To be quite frank, I've always assumed, as my

9 predecessor Colonel Duncan had described him, that

10 Mr. Kordic was a Vice-President of the Croat Republic

11 of Herceg-Bosna, and I was at no time privy to the

12 internal mechanisms or structures of the Croat Republic

13 of Herceg-Bosna, and who filled which particular roles.

14 Q. Thank you. Turning your attention to page --

15 I'm sorry, to document 1366.2, which is from 9

16 February. Again, this whole month being a period

17 leading up to the Washington Agreement. There is a

18 comment about Mate Boban. Do you have any particular

19 observations about this comment?

20 A. No. This is simply information that had

21 clearly been passed to the Vitez LO by a Croat

22 informant to one sort of another, official or

23 unofficial. There's no mention of who had told Vitez

24 LO that Mr. Boban had resigned.

25 Q. After you left your tour of duty with the

Page 13388

1 Coldstream Guards, did you ever meet Dario Kordic

2 again, and if so, in what capacity?

3 A. I did meet Mr. Kordic one more time in the

4 summer of 1995, I think in June, when I was the Deputy

5 Chief U.N. military observer based in Zagreb.

6 Q. And what was the occasion?

7 A. The occasion was a religious festival in the

8 town of Busovaca.

9 Q. What role did Mr. Kordic play?

10 A. Mr. Kordic was playing a leading role. He

11 was, as it were, the chief host at this festival, which

12 started with an open-air Catholic Mass and was then

13 carried on with a supper party for an international

14 political grouping which Mr. Carter, the former Civil

15 Affairs Officer, was part of, and I was a guest of

16 Mr. Carter on this evening.

17 Q. Was Mr. Kordic in a military attire at the

18 time or how was he dressed, if you remember?

19 A. Mr. Kordic was very smartly dressed in a suit

20 and was clearly enjoying the role of being a local

21 political -- or the local political leader.

22 Q. Do you recall if he was accompanied by any

23 other persons from the government of Herceg-Bosna at

24 the time?

25 A. He was accompanied by a gentleman whom I had

Page 13389

1 known from military commission meetings in Gornji

2 Vakuf, who I believe was Mr. Djukic, who I knew as the

3 Croat Republic of Herceg-Bosna Minister for

4 Normalisation. I'm not sure what his proper title was.

5 Q. I think I have covered the points that I

6 wished to cover. There is one amplification I might

7 ask about. In the use of airpower, are you aware of

8 any offensive use of helicopters or fixed wing in the

9 dropping of any munitions in the Bosnian territory for

10 offensive use?

11 A. There were certainly two incidents. One when

12 a 250-kilogramme bomb was dropped in an area to the

13 south of the Vitez pocket. This was disarmed by my

14 explosives officer. It had allegedly been dropped from

15 a helicopter. There was no obvious military target in

16 the area, so it was hard to see why this large munition

17 had suddenly appeared from the sky, but it had

18 undoubtedly arrived during our tour there and had

19 buried itself some depth and had to be dug out and

20 defused.

21 On one other occasion, aerially delivered KB2

22 bomblets, these are small bombs, had been dropped in an

23 area, Bosnian army held area around the Vitez pocket.

24 Whether this was by helicopter or by aircraft, it was

25 impossible for us to say.

Page 13390

1 MS. SOMERS: The balance for the Court's --

2 for the balance of the documents which are labelled for

3 admission, I will not discuss in any more detail. They

4 are relevant in that they occurred during the time of

5 the witness, and they had to be passed under his nose.

6 There is one ECMM document that confirms information

7 contained in a milinfosum. It simply is duplicative.

8 I have been asked to bring to the Court's

9 attention, by Ms. Verhaag, that we need a little

10 guidance on the use of or the video insofar as the

11 Defence is concerned. Would the Court permit us, would

12 the Chamber permit us to offer the transcript only in

13 light of the restrictions that ITN has placed on

14 copying?

15 JUDGE MAY: Do you want to have a look at

16 this video, Mr. Sayers?

17 MR. SAYERS: I don't think so, Your Honour.

18 It seems to me to be a peripheral point, and we're

19 perfectly happy if the Prosecution just puts a

20 transcript in and substitutes it for the --

21 JUDGE MAY: It's part of a news broadcast and

22 speaks for itself. Very well, the transcript can be

23 put in.

24 MS. SOMERS: Thank you very much. There are

25 no further questions.

Page 13391

1 JUDGE MAY: Well, it would be a convenient

2 moment. We'll adjourn now. Half an hour.

3 --- Recess taken at 10.58 a.m.





























Page 13392


2 --- On resuming at 11.37 a.m.


4 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Sayers.

5 Cross-examined by Mr. Sayers:


7 Q. Good morning, Colonel. My name is Stephen

8 Sayers. I'm one of the attorneys representing Dario

9 Kordic. Behind me is Mr. Mikulicic, and he represents

10 the other accused, Mario Cerkez.

11 Sir, I'd just like to go into a few general

12 areas of questions, and then -- and I'll indicate to

13 you when we'll take up the story chronologically and

14 just go through each of the meetings that you had with

15 Mr. Kordic and others, and I apologise in advance for

16 being a bit higgledy-piggledy with documents, but we

17 received a large quantity of documents only this

18 morning and I've had very little time to look through

19 them.

20 On the subject of documents, let me start

21 with the report that you prepared. On the 22nd of

22 September, 1994 -- the translators already have a copy

23 of this. I'd just like to have you identify this

24 document and confirm that it is the report concerning

25 your tour in Central Bosnia, Colonel.

Page 13393

1 THE REGISTRAR: Document will be marked

2 D166/1.


4 Q. Colonel, the document that's before you is, I

5 believe, what I alluded to, a summary or report that

6 you prepared for presentation to the Army Staff College

7 at Camberley on September the 22nd, 1994, and it

8 concerns basically the tour of duty of the 1st

9 Battalion of the Coldstream Guards under your command

10 from November 1993 until May of 1994. Is that correct?

11 A. That is correct.

12 MR. SAYERS: And, Mr. President, I had

13 prepared a long series of questions based upon this,

14 but the document says what it says, and there appears

15 to be very little point in going through to recite

16 that. Suffice it to say I'd like to highlight just a

17 few areas and move on smartly, if I may.

18 Q. The second document, Colonel, that we

19 received, it looks like it was extracts prepared from a

20 contemporaneous diary that you maintained. This was

21 turned over to us this morning, and I'd just like to

22 have you identify this, if I may. Thank you. And the

23 translators also have a copy of this.

24 THE REGISTRAR: Document will be marked

25 D167/1.

Page 13394

1 MR. SAYERS: Thank you, Madam Registrar.

2 Q. Colonel, this appears to be extracts from a

3 diary that you maintained regarding the significant

4 defence under your command, and that it appears to have

5 been typed up at some subsequent time; is that correct

6 to say?

7 A. That is correct.

8 Q. All right. Just one matter of detail,

9 Colonel. Do you actually speak Croatian yourself?

10 A. No, I do not.

11 Q. You've also been shown a number of

12 milinfosums, or military information summaries or

13 intelligence summaries, Colonel. Would it be fair to

14 say that these are reliable, contemporaneous summaries

15 of all of the significant occurrences, events or

16 meetings in your regiment's area of responsibility, and

17 that they were prepared by experienced and capable

18 intelligence officers under your command?

19 A. Yes, indeed it would.

20 Q. And these gentlemen, to use the vernacular,

21 were trained professionally, to separate out the wheat

22 from the chaff, if you like?

23 A. I would describe some of the factual points

24 in them are as they had picked up the information.

25 Some of the comments, particularly with hindsight,

Page 13395

1 perhaps, were not all that they might be, but they were

2 the best attempt that was available at the time.

3 Q. Thank you, sir. It would be fair to say, and

4 I don't think there is any dispute on this, that these

5 military intelligence summaries basically present an

6 evolving picture of your understanding of relationships

7 on the ground, command relationships, political

8 occurrences, things of that variety, significant events

9 in your area of responsibility. Would that be fair to

10 say?

11 A. They are indeed.

12 Q. All right. Thank you. Now, with respect to

13 the diaries that we've had marked as an exhibit, and

14 which you've identified. I believe, and it actually

15 says it right on the front page, that you received some

16 advice from Colonel Stewart to ensure that you kept a

17 contemporaneous diary, so that you could keep track of

18 things, what people were saying, who you met, things of

19 that variety; is that correct?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. And, indeed, you yourself refer in your

22 September report, on page 2, to this diary as a

23 reference document. And that's how you used it, and

24 that's what you intended, as you were keeping the

25 entries in a contemporaneous fashion? Would that be

Page 13396

1 fair to say too?

2 A. It was an attempt to, at the end of the day,

3 to sum up the things that appeared to have been

4 important during the course of the day. I would not

5 claim that it contains everything that occurred, just

6 things that struck me late at night.

7 Q. But it is, nonetheless, the most

8 contemporaneous source of information about the

9 meetings that you had with Mr. Kordic, for example,

10 that we have? Would you agree with that?

11 A. Along with the report of the 16th of

12 November, which is a contemporaneous report of -- made

13 by the Liaison Officer.

14 Q. And would you agree that there were no other

15 contemporaneous reports of the type that you've just

16 referred to? And I don't have the reference ready to

17 hand, but it was a November the 16th report prepared by

18 your Liaison Officer for Vitez; correct?

19 A. It was, indeed, prepared by the Liaison

20 Officer. And it is unusual, as far as I am aware, in

21 existing. Thereafter, our meetings tended not to

22 result in minutes.

23 Q. I put my fingers on it, and it is Exhibit

24 Z1305.4. It looks like the Busovaca Liaison Officer

25 was Captain Graham; correct?

Page 13397

1 A. That is correct.

2 Q. I take it, sir, that Captain Graham sat in on

3 your meetings of November 16th, 1993 with Mr. Kordic,

4 and presumably prepared notes himself, which ultimately

5 were reduced to written form in this report?

6 A. That's correct.

7 Q. There are no other reports of this type

8 concerning your meetings with Mr. Kordic in December

9 and February, I take it, sir?

10 A. I am not aware of any.

11 Q. Just one very brief question on this

12 particular point, sir. At the time that you took over

13 command of the UNPROFOR component that you've

14 identified as Operation Grapple 3, your predecessor was

15 Lieutenant-Colonel Duncan, conducting Operation Grapple

16 2 under the -- he was the Commander of Prince of Wales

17 Own Regiment of Yorkshire; correct?

18 A. Correct.

19 Q. And would it be fair to say that he had a

20 difficult relationship with the Croats, as a result of

21 his regiment having shot to death quite a few Croats

22 during the course of his tour of duty?

23 A. I have no idea what his battalion had done.

24 For example, I have never seen a post-tour report by

25 his battalion, so I can't comment on that.

Page 13398

1 Q. Have you ever seen an article published in

2 The Guardian on April 2nd, 1996, referring to the

3 Prince of Wales Own Regiment of Yorkshire, as SheetBat,

4 a moniker that they had earned as a result of what I

5 just referred to, the many shootings of Croats during

6 the tour of duty of the POW?

7 A. I did in fact see that article. It, I felt,

8 covered a period wider than that of the Prince of

9 Wales' Own Regiment, and I was -- I frankly thought it

10 was unbalanced, when viewed in terms of my own

11 battalion's performance.

12 Q. Just one question on your own chain of

13 command, Colonel. And you've referred to this on page

14 6 and 7 of your report, your report of September the

15 22nd, 1994. What you wrote is fairly self-evident, but

16 would it be fair to say that other components of

17 UNPROFOR, other national contingents, found the chain

18 of command within BritBat to be rather confusing?

19 A. That is true.

20 Q. In fact, I believe that you had troops

21 affiliated with the British Army operating in your

22 area, to be specific, sappers, medics and logistics

23 troops, who did not actually fall under your command,

24 but rather came under the command of ComBrit 4 in

25 Split. Is that correct?

Page 13399

1 A. That is correct.

2 Q. Indeed, you make a comment on page 7, that if

3 this situation seemed bizarre, to you yourself at

4 BritBat, it was incomprehensible to other U.N.

5 Contingents and led to many misunderstandings. And

6 that's still your view today, is it not?

7 A. It's regrettably true.

8 Q. Let me turn to the general military situation

9 that confronted you, as you took over command, sir. On

10 page 14 and 24 of your September the 22nd, 1994 report,

11 you say that you found yourself or your soldiers

12 embroiled in the middle of a vicious civil war or a

13 full-blown civil war, as you call it on page 24. Would

14 it be fair to say that in early November, as your

15 troops assumed their duties, the Muslim forces had just

16 created a complete -- completed rather, a successful

17 series of co-ordinated offensives throughout Central

18 Bosnia, mounted in Travnik, Kakanj, Bugogno, Fojnica,

19 and just before you started your duties, Vares on

20 November the 2nd, 1993?

21 A. I don't feel competent, I'm afraid, to

22 comment on what had happened before I got there.

23 Q. Very well, sir. Then I will move on. You

24 have made comment in your September, 1994, report on

25 pages 8 and 16 to the complexity of the front lines

Page 13400

1 that you were called upon, if you like, to monitor and

2 deal with. It would be fair to say that this was

3 indeed a complex situation, with occasionally front

4 lines running through the middle of the town, such as

5 Vitez and Novi Travnik, and occasionally you find

6 Muslim enclaves within Croat enclaves surrounded by

7 hostile forces; is that correct?

8 A. I think that's a fair description.

9 Q. You found that a very complex ongoing

10 situation with which to deal with; would that be fair

11 to say, sir?

12 A. That's true.

13 Q. And indeed this led to sort of hyper precise,

14 if you like, attempts to describe the situation of the

15 citizens of Stari Vitez, for example. And you refer to

16 this on page 16 of your report, an attempt to try to

17 work out some language between both of the warring

18 factions that described the situations of the citizens

19 of Stari Vitez. You say that the ultimate decision was

20 to refer to it as the area occupied by the Bosnian army

21 inside the area occupied by the Croatian Defence

22 Forces. Do you recall that comment, sir?

23 A. I do. At the time, both parties wished to

24 conclude the agreement, but were finding it difficult

25 to find a form of words that was acceptable to

Page 13401

1 everyone.

2 Q. So that elliptical but descriptive

3 terminology was what was ultimately agreed upon by both

4 parties, I take it?

5 A. All right.

6 Q. Just a few more general questions along these

7 lines, sir. Would it be fair to say that during this

8 civil war, you found a general atmosphere of

9 lawlessness and danger that prevailed, to a greater

10 extent in areas controlled by the Muslim forces, and to

11 a lesser extent in the Croat enclaves?

12 A. There was undoubtedly danger in all areas.

13 As I've stated earlier this morning, the area under the

14 command of -- under the control of the Croat

15 authorities generally was of a more peaceful character

16 internally, although the front lines were obviously

17 dangerous on both sides.

18 Q. All right. Do you recall receiving reports

19 in January of 1994, from the Chief of Civil Police in

20 Zenica, Mr. Mirsad Pajic, to the effect that the crime

21 rate in Zenica had increased tenfold since before the

22 war?

23 A. I don't remember receiving such a report.

24 Q. That would not be inaccurate, though, would

25 it?

Page 13402

1 A. I have no idea. I don't have any idea of the

2 statistics of crime.

3 Q. Very well. I have, sir, a number of military

4 intelligence reports that I would like to go over with

5 you, as we proceed chronologically through the time

6 that you spent in Central Bosnia during your first

7 tour. Let me just show you one of them, milinfosum

8 number 1, dated November the 1st, 1993.

9 I wonder, Mr. President, if we might have

10 page 1 of this document put on the ELMO for the

11 translators since I had not provided a copy of this to

12 them previously.

13 THE REGISTRAR: Document is marked D168/1.


15 Q. Colonel, had the Coldstream Guards actually

16 assumed their duties by this time, November the 1st,

17 1993?

18 A. No we had not, but we had received military

19 information responsibility, so this was the first

20 milinfosum produced by my military information officer

21 in his cell, but I did not arrive to take over formally

22 about the 8th.

23 Q. The 8th of November?

24 A. 8th of November.

25 Q. All right. There is a reference in paragraph

Page 13403

1 3 to Mr. Neso Hurem, the Battalion Commander of the

2 325th Brigade, stating that the main BiH effort was

3 still the Vitez pocket and there's a reference to

4 sighting a number of Mujahedin to be loading various

5 types of weaponry including, under item A there, 2

6 20-millimetre AAMGs. And I take it that stands for

7 anti-aircraft machine gun?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. All right. And that's a 20-millimetre

10 cannon; is that right?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. All right. And the observation is made or

13 the comment is made that this represents a sizeable

14 increase in the amount of firepower into that area.

15 Did you yourself ever see Mujahedin operating in the

16 area of Kruscica or areas to the south of Vitez, sir?

17 A. No, I not.

18 Q. There is also a comment to a possible

19 roulement of the 7th Muslim Brigade troops occurring in

20 the village of Poculica. Two questions. Could you

21 just tell me what a roulement is and what the 7th

22 Muslim Brigade was, as far as you know, sir?

23 A. The roulement is a military expression

24 meaning a change from unit being replaced by another

25 unit. And the 7th Muslim Brigade was an organisation

Page 13404

1 within -- working within the 3rd Corps of the Bosnian

2 Army. Most of its members were of a religious

3 persuasion and most were displaced persons, as far as

4 I'm aware.

5 Q. I wonder if you could just turn to page 3,

6 under paragraph 11. You may have no detailed factual

7 knowledge of this, but it seems to be motif for the

8 times, if you like, the unfortunate times. There's a

9 reference to seven people, and it appears to be Croats,

10 who had been double crossed by Muslims and shot dead,

11 having paid some 2,000 Deutschemarks apiece to be moved

12 out of the area. Apparently they were all found shot

13 in the head by pistol shots. Were you ever aware of

14 that incident, sir?

15 A. Other than having read this report, I have

16 nothing that would confirm or deny the accuracy of

17 that.

18 Q. And I -- would it be fair to say, sir, that

19 even though, as terrible as this particular incident

20 is, this would not be unusual of what was going on in

21 Central Bosnia during the time that the Coldstream

22 Guards were serving there from November 1993 to May of

23 1994, on both sides?

24 A. I don't think this incident, if it indeed

25 occurred, could be seen as a typical incident. It

Page 13405

1 would be a serious incident at any time.

2 Q. All right. Let's move on, sir. Indeed,

3 another incident that's perhaps indicative of the

4 deplorable times occurred in January of 1994, when a

5 British citizen, Mr. Paul Goodall, a member of the

6 Overseas Development Association, was murdered by

7 Islamic gang in Zenica in late January of 1994. Do you

8 recall that incident?

9 A. I remember the incident well.

10 Q. Do you know whether any investigation was

11 ever performed into that incident by the--

12 JUDGE MAY: You know, we've had, in the last

13 10 months, a deal of evidence about these sort of

14 atrocities. I really wonder, Mr. Sayers, how this is

15 going to help us decide the case.

16 MR. SAYERS: I take your point,

17 Mr. President, and I'm going to move on immediately.

18 Q. Let me turn to the situation of people in

19 Stari Vitez, sir. You say that there were

20 approximately 1,200 defenders in that area; is that

21 correct?

22 A. One thousand two hundred inhabitants.

23 Q. Okay. I was just referring to page 4 of your

24 September the 9th, 1994 report, but I think you've

25 clarified that.

Page 13406

1 Colonel Blaskic actually told your regiment

2 that he was not opposed to allowing BritBat access to

3 Stari Vitez in principle, but he was not prepared to

4 risk the lives of his own troops in facilitating that

5 access. Would that be fair to say?

6 A. It's probably true. I would say that's

7 true.

8 Q. And indeed that's reflected in a milinfosum,

9 but since we've already covered that there's no point

10 in going into that.

11 Would it also be fair to say that this was

12 significant sniper activity directed from Stari Vitez

13 towards HVO Croat positions elsewhere in Vitez, sir?

14 A. I would say that there was significant

15 sniping activity by both sides, both into and out of

16 Stari Vitez.

17 Q. All right. And it would be fair to say as

18 well, would it not, that the ABiH artillery resources

19 on the high ground regularly shelled Vitez and they

20 also regularly shelled Busovaca too, would that be fair

21 to say?

22 A. I would hesitate to use the word

23 "regularly." The artillery assets available to the

24 3rd Bosnian Corps were limited, extremely limited, but

25 I expect the bombardment was dependent on the

Page 13407

1 availability of ammunition, which was somewhat

2 infrequent.

3 Q. And one last question about Stari Vitez. Did

4 you ever meet (redacted)

5 (redacted)

6 (redacted)

7 A. I was not aware there was anyone qualified as

8 a doctor in Stari Vitez.

9 Q. On the subject of artillery, sir, I'd just

10 like to show you one milinfosum generated by your

11 military intelligence unit. It's milinfosum number 77

12 dated January the 16th, 1994. If you could put one --

13 page 1 on the ELMO, that would be useful.

14 Just two brief questions in connection with

15 this document.

16 THE REGISTRAR: Document is marked D169/1.

17 MR. SAYERS: Thank you.

18 Q. Two things, sir. In connection with the

19 observation made in paragraph 3 regarding BiH probing

20 patrols being engaged by the HVO, it's true, is it not,

21 that throughout your tour of duty, the Muslim objective

22 was to cut or obtain control of the Vitez pocket, and

23 that, in fact, two significant offensives attempted to

24 achieve precisely that objective, one just before

25 Christmas in 1993, and the other on January 9th, 1994?

Page 13408

1 A. I'm not absolutely sure what the intention

2 was, but certainty it appeared on the ground as if the

3 intention was to cut the pocket in half, and I presume

4 they assumed that the pocket would fall once it had

5 been cut into two distinct pieces.

6 Q. And, in fact, you are in experience, sir,

7 with the Soviet Bloc military tactics, slicing of

8 pockets up into smaller pockets is relatively standard

9 strategic and tactical doctrine, isn't it?

10 A. This was a -- I don't think anybody else's

11 doctrine was involved in this. This was the narrowest

12 point. This was the neck of the pocket. It was the

13 most obvious place to attack.

14 Q. And by "this," just so that the record is

15 clear, you're referring to the narrowest of the

16 Vitez-Busovaca pocket at the area of Santici, on the

17 main supply route; is that correct?

18 A. That is correct.

19 Q. The second question, sir, in paragraph 4,

20 your liaison officer reported that there was a

21 relatively high level of artillery and mortar activity

22 into Vitez and that the observation made was this

23 appears to be harassment fire on the town to maintain

24 the pressure on the HVO. Do you know whether any

25 militaries targets were being targeted by this

Page 13409

1 harassment fire or was it just fire launched generally

2 into the area of Vitez where people were living and

3 working?

4 A. I'm not aware of the actual details or indeed

5 what is meant by "relatively high," but in comparison

6 to artillery levels, each of the artillery into the

7 Gornji Vakuf area, for example, artillery fire into the

8 Vitez area was of a minimal level.

9 Q. With respect to Gornji Vakuf, sir, is it true

10 that the HVO attempted to avoid hitting the BritBat

11 base or U.N. convoys during periods of active fighting

12 and you were, in fact, informed of that?

13 A. Yes, this is true, both in the case of Gornji

14 Vakuf and, I believe, in the case of the Vitez area as

15 well.

16 Q. You never heard of Mr. Kordic ever appearing

17 in the Gornji Vakuf area, did you, sir? Ever being

18 present in that area?

19 A. I was not aware of him being in that area at

20 all, no.

21 Q. In fact, and we'll get into this just a

22 second, as I understand, Gornji Vakuf fell within a

23 completely different command zone of the HVO from the

24 Vitez-Busovaca pocket --

25 JUDGE MAY: We must first of all establish

Page 13410

1 whether the witness knows about the HVO command.

2 MR. SAYERS: Yes, Your Honour.

3 JUDGE MAY: Colonel, do you know anything

4 about that?

5 A. I know a certain amount, Your Honour. I

6 wouldn't claim to be a great expert.


8 Q. The Presiding Judge points out very correctly

9 that I have to establish that you know something about

10 it, but before I can answer [sic] a question of detail

11 like that. Were you aware that the military chain of

12 command had its pinnacle, if you like, at the general

13 staff in Mostar?

14 A. Yes. I'm aware of that.

15 Q. And the Commander In Chief during your

16 tour of duty, sir, I believe you've identified him as

17 Lieutenant General Ante Roso.

18 A. I met General Roso.

19 Q. He was the Commander In Chief of the HVO

20 Armed Forces throughout Bosnia-Herzegovina; is that

21 fair to say?

22 A. That's correct. As far as I'm aware.

23 Q. And in addition, sir, would it be fair to say

24 that the organisation of the HVO forces was arranged

25 into various so-called Operative Zones with, I believe,

Page 13411

1 the north-west Herzegovina Operative Zone, including

2 Gornji Vakuf, being under the command of Brigadier

3 Skender, I believe?

4 A. As far as I was aware, the area of Prozor

5 area that we're talking about to the south of Gornji

6 Vakuf came under Tomislavgrad in -- overall but its

7 forward headquarters in Prozor.

8 Q. And do you know who the Zone Commander was in

9 that zone, sir?

10 A. I met two people in Gornji -- Prozor. One

11 was Colonel Siljeg, and he was then replaced by Colonel

12 Skender.

13 Q. And no one ever mentioned that --

14 Mr. Kordic's name during the times that you were

15 meeting with Brigadier Skender or Colonel Siljeg, did

16 they?

17 A. I don't recall his name being mentioned.

18 Q. Very well. Thank you. In each Operative

19 Zone, sir, and let's turn specifically to the Central

20 Bosnia Operative Zone about which I would venture to

21 say you know most, would that be fair to say?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. All right. Within each Operative Zone, there

24 were a municipality-based brigades, each with their own

25 Commander; is that right?

Page 13412

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. And those Brigade Commanders would in turn

3 report up the chain of command to the Operative Zone

4 Command near your zone, being Colonel Tihomir Blaskic?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Were you aware, sir, that the -- well, do you

7 know who the Commander of the brigade in Busovaca was?

8 A. I don't recall.

9 Q. All right. Let me just show you two

10 milinfosums, the first being milinfosum number 5, dated

11 November the 5th, 1993, and the second being

12 milinfosum 8, dated November the 8th, 1993.

13 THE REGISTRAR: The milinfosum of the 5th of

14 November will be marked D170/1, and the one of 8

15 November D171/1.

16 MR. SAYERS: Thank you very much.

17 Q. Once again very brief questions on this,

18 Colonel. Turning to the first document, the milinfosum

19 number 5, would you just look at page 2, paragraph 10?

20 There's a reference there to Dusko Grubesic, Commander

21 Nikola Subic-Zrinjski HVO Brigade. Were you ever able

22 to interact yourself with the Busovaca Brigade

23 Commander, Commander Gubesic?

24 A. No.

25 Q. All right. I take it, sir, that contacts

Page 13413

1 between your soldiers and the Bigade Commander at the

2 local level would have occurred at the level of a

3 Liaison Officer and not at the Commander's level, not

4 at your level?

5 A. It would have been either a Company Commander

6 or more likely the Liaison Officer.

7 Q. And secondly, sir, milinfosum number 8 on

8 page 2, paragraph 10, refers to military predictions

9 made by Commander Gubesic to your Busovaca Liaison

10 Officer, fearing that his troops on the ground or

11 fearing that the next offensive would be against the

12 Vitez pocket and reporting that the HVO appeared to be

13 somewhat resigned to that perception. Were you aware

14 of that perception on the part of the HVO, that they

15 perceived that the Vitez pocket would be the target of

16 the next BiH offensive?

17 A. I think, viewed from a perspective of a local

18 commander like Mr. Grubesic, it was a very fair

19 assumption.

20 Q. Very well. Just one question on

21 Lieutenant-General Roso. You were aware, were you not,

22 that he actually spent 20 years serving in the French

23 Foreign Legion?

24 A. I knew that, yes, indeed.

25 Q. Now, turning to Colonel Blaskic for just a

Page 13414

1 minute. He was the, as you've said, the Commander of

2 the Operative Zone and was, in fact, the Military

3 Commander of all Armed Forces on the Croat side in

4 Central Bosnia; correct?

5 A. As it would appear through the military chain

6 of command, yes.

7 Q. You never saw anything to lead you to a

8 different conclusion, did you, sir?

9 A. As I stated earlier on, my view is that, when

10 in the presence of Mr. Kordic, Colonel Blaskic always

11 deferred to him as if Mr. Kordic was in charge, and

12 indeed we always viewed Mr. Kordic as the man who could

13 deliver. Whereas Blaskic could quite often just say

14 that something was impossible, Mr. Kordic would always

15 tell you why -- the policy was for it to be impossible.

16 Q. All right. Just give the interpreters,

17 Colonel, a chance to catch up.

18 Colonel Blaskic, to your knowledge, was in

19 fact a professional military Officer, having obtained

20 an Officer's rank in the JNA before the war; correct?

21 A. He was a young Officer before the war, yes.

22 Q. You would agree, sir, that military Officers

23 are normally respectful in the presence of senior

24 political figures; isn't that correct?

25 A. This is quite normal.

Page 13415

1 Q. In fact, sir, I'm sure that you yourself are

2 very respectful when you receive visits from members of

3 parliament or members of the government? Would that be

4 fair to say? But that certainly doesn't mean, sir,

5 that Members of Parliament or Members of the Government

6 can issue a direct military order to you, does it?

7 A. The Members of the Parliament or, rather,

8 Ministers are the people who determine the policy that

9 soldiers shall carry out. We don't determine policy.

10 Q. Certainly, sir, as part of the government,

11 but as individuals they don't have the power to issue

12 military orders to you. That's the only point that I

13 am getting at.

14 A. The point that I am making is that we take

15 our orders from Ministers.

16 Q. Now, Colonel Blaskic never told you on any

17 occasion that he had to obey orders from Mr. Kordic,

18 did he, sir?

19 A. Not in so many words, no.

20 Q. There is no reference to it in your diary, or

21 any milinfosum. And I think that it would be fair to

22 say that there is no report, of which you are aware,

23 prepared by your battalion which contains any reference

24 to the fact that Colonel Blaskic had to defer to orders

25 given to him by Mr. Kordic? Would that be fair to say?

Page 13416

1 A. I think the reports make it clear, in so many

2 words, that we assumed that Mr. Kordic was in charge,

3 and that Mr. Kordic also assumed that he was in

4 charge.

5 Q. All right. Well, we've established that you

6 never asked Colonel Blaskic the question. Did you ever

7 ask Mr. Kordic whether he had the power or authority,

8 actually, to issue military orders, for example?

9 A. Mr. Kordic often said that he would make

10 things possible. As I say, he had the ability, in the

11 view of myself and other members of the International

12 Community, to make things happen. Now, these things

13 were either -- were not purely military, perhaps they

14 were to do with relations with the International

15 Community.

16 Q. Yes, sir. But did you ever ask a question,

17 did he have the ability to give military orders? Did

18 you ever clear that issue up?

19 A. Not in so many words.

20 Q. Very well. All right. Quite apart from

21 Colonel Blaskic and Mr. Kordic, did you ever ask

22 Colonel Filipovic, for example, whether Mr. Kordic had

23 any military authority, or, for that matter, any other

24 Bosnian Croat Military Commander or political figure?

25 A. Colonel Filipovic was, I would say, too busy

Page 13417

1 fighting a war to be willing to take time out to make

2 political comments like that.

3 Q. Would the answer to the question then be no?

4 A. The answer would be no, I had no conversation

5 with him.

6 Q. Let me, Colonel, proceed chronologically

7 through your tour of duty. The next milinfosum I would

8 like you to look at is milinfosum number 13, dated

9 November 13, 1993.

10 THE REGISTRAR: Document D172/1.


12 Q. One brief question on this, Colonel. It's on

13 page 2, paragraph 9. There is a reference to a meeting

14 between the Zenica Liaison Officer, a meeting with

15 Dzemal Merdan, the Deputy Commander of the 3rd Corps,

16 and a response to a request made by Colonel Blaskic for

17 safe passage to attend his father's funeral in

18 Kiseljak.

19 Do you recall that this request was turned

20 down by Dzemal Merdan?

21 A. My only recollection is what I see here in

22 the report.

23 Q. Do you have any recollection, independent of

24 this report, sir, or does this accurately encapsulate

25 the state of the Coldstream Guards knowledge as of this

Page 13418

1 date on that particular subject?

2 A. This is clearly the view, as put by Colonel

3 Merdan, as to why he believed Colonel Blaskic really

4 wanted to go to Kiseljak. I have no reason to have an

5 opinion on that.

6 Q. Sir, you were asked some questions in

7 connection with threats to explode the Vitezit

8 factory. I do not have any questions for you on that

9 subject, other than this one: It's fair to say that

10 this was a -- was a sort of an old story, if you like;

11 threats to explode the factory had been made for a

12 number of months, even before your regiment assumed

13 their duties? Is that correct?

14 A. As far as I am aware, they went back some

15 time.

16 Q. Thank you. Now, sir, you had occasion, did

17 you not, to exchange many pieces of correspondence back

18 and forth with Colonel Blaskic and the HVO headquarters

19 in the Hotel Vitez?

20 A. I did.

21 Q. All right. I believe that on February the

22 22nd, 1994, you wrote a letter thanking Colonel Blaskic

23 and the HVO for co-operation extended to BritBat during

24 the Muslim offensive in late December, 1993; is that

25 correct?

Page 13419

1 A. That's correct.

2 Q. All right. Indeed, sir, that offensive

3 involved one particular incident involving the deaths

4 of 60 or 70 Croats at Krizancevo Selo. Do you recall

5 that?

6 A. I do recall that.

7 Q. Notwithstanding the fact that the Croats in

8 the pocket, the Vitez pocket, were under assault, they

9 permitted United Nations convoys to use alternative

10 routes through the Vitez area, when the main road, the

11 main supply route itself, was under a sustained ABiH

12 attack; is that right?

13 A. Correct.

14 Q. All right. And then one other letter that

15 you wrote to Colonel Blaskic was congratulating him on

16 his appointment to the HVO general staff in Mostar, I

17 believe in March or May of 1994. Do you recall that?

18 A. Right.

19 Q. Do you know who promoted him?

20 A. No, I had only heard as a rumour that he had

21 been promoted, I think through the world service or

22 some such thing. And so I took the opportunity to

23 write to him.

24 Q. Do you know who made promotion decisions

25 within the HVO, or the Croatian Republic of

Page 13420

1 Herceg-Bosna, sir?

2 A. No, I don't know that.

3 Q. You touched lightly on this, and I'll touch

4 equally lightly, Colonel. Would it be fair to say that

5 you did not undertake any significant effort to obtain

6 information on Bosnian Croat political institutions,

7 and most particularly, the Croatian Republic of

8 Herceg-Bosna?

9 A. My dealings with the Croatian or the Croat

10 authorities were purely linked to trying to deliver

11 humanitarian aid and fulfil my mission. It went no

12 further than that.

13 Q. Right. You didn't perform any study of the

14 members of the government of the Croatian Republic of

15 Herceg-Bosna or the political institutions that were

16 set up when that entity was established on the 28th of

17 August of 1993? Would that be fair to say as well?

18 A. I never tasked my military information cell

19 to produce anything like that, and we never saw

20 anything like that.

21 Q. Turning to your meetings with Mr. Kordic,

22 Colonel. I think I counted, from the papers, five

23 meetings. You've described one on November the 16th of

24 1993. There was another one that you described on

25 December the 1st of 1993. There was -- yes.

Page 13421

1 A. Indeed.

2 Q. There was a meeting that you described on

3 February 3rd, 1993. Do you recall that?

4 A. Yes, I do.

5 Q. There is one that you didn't describe, but is

6 referred to in a milinfosum on February the 9th, I'll

7 show you that. The final meeting you had with

8 Mr. Kordic, before the war's end, was February the

9 21st, 1993. And you've described that; correct?

10 A. Yes, that's right.

11 Q. And then -- sorry, just to complete it. You

12 had one other meeting with him, about a year after the

13 end of the war, a year or so, in the summer of 1995,

14 and you described that?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. All right. Now, it's true that, in your

17 view, he was the political leader of Croats in the

18 Lasva Valley; is that right?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. All right. And I think that you've referred,

21 on November the 16th, February the 8th, and February

22 the 9th, in your diary to that and, just for the Trial

23 Chamber's reference, that can be found at pages 3, 18

24 and 19.

25 On page 10 of the statement that you gave to

Page 13422

1 the Prosecution in June of 1998, sir, you said that you

2 never, in fact, saw Mr. Kordic in full military

3 uniform, and never heard him referred to as anything

4 other than Mr. Kordic. Is that still --

5 A. I would say that the second part, indeed, I

6 never heard him referred to as anything else than

7 Mr. Kordic. I never saw him -- when I say full

8 military uniform, I never saw him wear a badge of rank

9 or, indeed, wear a military head dress, but I did see

10 him wear camouflage clothing and, on this one occasion,

11 the 16th of November, he was wearing an HVO arm patch.

12 Q. All right. Were you aware that Mr. Kordic

13 actually gave weekly press conferences in Busovaca?

14 A. Yes. They are mentioned occasionally in the

15 milinfosums.

16 Q. And, indeed, when you first met Mr. Kordic,

17 it was your understanding that he was the

18 vice-president of the HDZ party; isn't that true?

19 A. That's what I've been led to believe.

20 Q. And, in fact, sir, that was true, wasn't it?

21 As far as you know, he was, in fact, one of the five

22 vice-presidents of the HDZ, BiH, the Croatian

23 Democratic Union of Bosnia-Herzegovina?

24 A. I believed it to be true, that he was a

25 vice-president. I can't say how many there were.

Page 13423

1 Q. And you may not know the answer to this, sir,

2 but do you know who the President of that political

3 party was, at the time that you were in Central

4 Bosnia?

5 A. I assume that Mr. Boban was the President at

6 that time.

7 Q. Let me turn to the November the 16th

8 meeting. You say that Mr. Kordic was dressed in a

9 camouflage waistcoat, that he didn't wear any military

10 insignia or rank badges; is that right?

11 A. Yes, he was wearing a camouflage waistcoat.

12 Yes, he was not wearing any military badges of rank,

13 but he was wearing an HVO arm patch.

14 Q. This was the only time that you saw him wear

15 that patch, though, correct?

16 A. It's the only time that I can confirm it.

17 Q. I wonder if we could show -- if you could

18 just refer to Exhibit Z1305.2, which I think is the

19 milinfosum which describes this particular meeting,

20 sir.

21 A. I have it.

22 Q. If you could just turn to page 2. There is a

23 reference to the fact that the Commanding Officer of

24 BritBat visits Mr. Kordic, and that certain freedom of

25 movement issues are discussed. And the comment is made

Page 13424

1 that:

2 "Mr Kordic's authority over the military

3 commanders in the area is in question. The immediate

4 future may provide answers to who holds real power in

5 the area."

6 Do you know whose commentary that was?

7 A. It's not my commentary. It's the commentary

8 of the military information cell.

9 Q. Was that comment based, in any way, upon

10 briefings that you gave to your military intelligence

11 cell following the conclusion of this meeting, sir?

12 A. I don't believe it was.

13 Q. And as we go through your contemporaneous

14 diary, sir, on page 3. The entry under the 16th of

15 November is rather brief, I think you'll agree. And it

16 says:

17 "The commanding officer visited Dario Kordic,

18 HVO political leader, and member of the government of

19 the so-called Croat republic of Herceg-Bosna and his

20 lair just south of Busovaca."

21 What did you mean by liar?

22 A. Mr. Kordic was living, I believe it's called

23 Tisovac, to the south of Busovaca, but it was down a

24 mountain road and very much at the end of the world.

25 It did seem rather like a wolf's lair in some ways.

Page 13425

1 Q. And would it be fair to say that you viewed

2 Mr. Kordic early on as someone who had the status of a

3 war criminal?

4 A. I'm not sure that I've reached that

5 conclusion early on. It was only after my -- some of

6 my dealings with him that led me to believe that he was

7 not, perhaps, a very compassionate person.

8 Q. If we take a look at page 6 of your diary,

9 you refer to a meeting on December the 1st, where you

10 say that:

11 "Kordic refused all Stari Vitez casevacs,

12 except to the Croat Nova Bila hospital, until Croat

13 casevacs could travel to Kiseljak. Characteristic

14 bloody-mindedness (he was later indicted as a war

15 criminal, and rightly so.)"

16 The casevac, does that refer to casualty

17 evacuation?

18 A. These are civilian casualty evacuations.

19 Q. When did you add that comment, sir, to your

20 diary?

21 A. That's when I put the comments together in

22 19 -- as per the end. 1995, I think.

23 Q. All right. Proceeding chronologically, sir.

24 The next item that I have a note of is you were asked

25 about the identity of a person named Chris Wilson. I

Page 13426

1 would just like to show you the next milinfosum number

2 17. And that's already been marked I believe as

3 Z1308.1.

4 In paragraph 3, on the first page of this

5 document, there is a reference to this person, Chris

6 Wilson. And the intelligence report says that he has

7 gone to some lengths to conceal his identity from

8 BritBat and is reported to be a former member of

9 Operation Grapple 1. Operation Grapple 1, I take it,

10 sir, was the operation that was run under the auspices

11 of the Cheshire Regiment commanded by Colonel Stewart;

12 correct?

13 A. That's correct.

14 Q. All right did you ever receive information to

15 the effect that this apparently English soldier was

16 affiliated in any way with a group known as the

17 Jokers?

18 A. I know nothing more about this Chris Wilson

19 than what is written here.

20 Q. Very well. The next item, chronologically,

21 Colonel, is a reference that you made to an agreement

22 signed in Geneva on November the 29th, 1993. It's

23 true, is it not, that this agreement was signed by the

24 commander of all of UNPROFOR forces in

25 Bosnia-Herzegovina, General Cot?

Page 13427

1 A. Yes, that's correct.

2 Q. And negotiated between General Rasim Delic,

3 the Commander of the Forces of the Army of

4 Bosnia-Herzegovina, correct?

5 A. Correct.

6 Q. And for the HVO General Milivoj Petkovic, the

7 Chief Of Staff under General Ante Roso, correct?

8 A. Correct.

9 Q. All right. Now, Mr. Kordic was not involved

10 in any of those negotiations, was he, to your

11 knowledge?

12 A. Not to my knowledge.

13 Q. I believe, sir, that it was your practice to

14 require your soldiers to keep a copy of this agreement

15 in their vehicles as they tried to pass through

16 checkpoints; correct?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. And that was because one of the points agreed

19 upon at the Geneva conference was a guarantee of

20 freedom of movement to international agencies;

21 correct?

22 A. That's right.

23 Q. Generally speaking, would it be fair to say

24 that you encountered few, if any, restrictions on

25 movement in the Vitez-Busovaca pocket --

Page 13428

1 A. Those --

2 Q. -- this agreement?

3 A. After this agreement. I don't believe, to

4 be quite honest, that the agreement made any great

5 difference. There were restrictions that were imposed

6 by either side, by either the Muslims or the Croats,

7 were, I believe, largely to do with the primacy of the

8 war effort.

9 Q. It's true, it is not, sir, that

10 Colonel Blaskic actually notified BritBat in writing

11 that all checkpoints in the Vitez-Busovaca pocket would

12 be closed from dusk to dawn and that he notified

13 BritBat of that after the Geneva agreement?

14 A. That is correct.

15 Q. All right. And, in fact, I think you found

16 this to be a fairly sensible arrangement, consistent

17 with safety and the practice insofar as UNHCR convoys

18 were concerned anyway, which was not to run those

19 convoys at night?

20 A. The principle was that white vehicles become

21 black in the dark and are, therefore, fair game.

22 Q. And, therefore, you did not disagree with

23 that directive issued by Colonel Blaskic, did you, sir?

24 A. We did not disagree with it, no.

25 Q. All right. Colonel, that brings us to the

Page 13429

1 December the 1st, 1993 meeting that you had with

2 Mr. Kordic, and I believe that in response to the

3 arguments that you made, in your view Mr. Kordic came

4 up with political arguments to articulate the Croat

5 position with respect to the arguments that you were

6 making; is that right?

7 A. I described earlier, yes. Correct.

8 Q. Looking at your diary, there's no reference

9 to the particular content of any discussions that you

10 had with Mr. Kordic on that date, or insofar as they

11 related to casevacs. Let me just ask you one question,

12 sir. You said that Mr. Kordic said something about

13 crossing a border. Are you sure that he said an

14 international border?

15 A. I'm absolutely positive. My memory of it is

16 it was a particularly remarkable statement and that's

17 why it stuck in my mind.

18 Q. Were you aware, sir, that the

19 Stoltenberg-Owen Plan actually envisaged an arrangement

20 to forge a peace in Central Bosnia, and that

21 arrangement involved the establishment of three

22 separate constituent republics, ethnically based

23 republics within the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina?

24 A. There were many plans. I don't feel that

25 they were relevant to the situation at the time. I was

Page 13430

1 dealing with the situation on the 1st of December,

2 1993.

3 Q. You were aware, though, that the Croatian

4 Republic of Herceg-Bosna had already been established

5 at that time, weren't you?

6 A. I was aware that there was an organisation

7 going by that name.

8 Q. And were you aware that that was set up in

9 the same month as the Stoltenberg-Owen Plan was

10 actually approved?

11 A. No. I wouldn't be able to put the two events

12 together.

13 Q. So suffice it to say, sir, that you

14 weren't -- you did not yourself undertake any study of

15 the relationship between the timing of the

16 establishment of the HR H-B, the Croatian Republic of

17 Herceg-Bosna and the details of the Stoltenberg-Owen

18 Plan; is that right?

19 A. That's correct.

20 JUDGE MAY: That doesn't really matter. The

21 issue is: Did Mr. Kordic say that it would involve

22 crossing an international border? I take it, from what

23 you're saying, that that is challenged; is that right?

24 MR. SAYERS: Yes. That -- that is

25 challenged. I think that the discussion -- the

Page 13431

1 Defence's position, if I may articulate it,

2 Mr. President --

3 JUDGE MAY: Well, no. It's merely matter of

4 whether the comment is challenged or not, whatever the

5 plans may have said at the time. The witness's

6 evidence is that Mr. Kordic said that.

7 MR. SAYERS: Quite so, Your Honour.

8 Q. Are you sure that that was the precise

9 translation that was given to you of the observation

10 made by Mr. Kordic, sir?

11 A. As I have said, it was such a remarkable

12 statement that it stuck in my mind and chilled me to

13 the point where I could go no further with the

14 argument.

15 Q. Very well. And it would also be fair to say

16 that you did not make any contemporaneous note of that

17 comment or report it to your military intelligence

18 cell; correct?

19 A. It does not appear in the military

20 information summary, you're correct.

21 Q. You didn't make a note of it in your diary

22 either, did you?

23 A. I can't say yes or no to that, as I don't

24 have -- this is a summary of my diaries. I don't have

25 them available to check.

Page 13432

1 Q. All right, sir. Moving on. Towards the end

2 of 1993, there is a reference in your diary to attacks

3 launched against the Vitez-Busovaca pocket on December

4 the 22nd and 24th of 1993. It's on page 9. On

5 December the 22nd, the BiH launched -- offensives

6 launched in the Vitez pocket and in the Gornji Vakuf

7 area. There's also a reference to 60 or 70 HVO being

8 killed by a surprise attack at Krizancevo Selo near

9 Dubravica. Would it be fair to say, sir, that that

10 event involving so many deaths raised some particularly

11 hard feelings on the part of the Croats battling for

12 their lives against this sustained assault?

13 A. Indeed. There were immediate allegations

14 that this was a massacre, and we followed this up later

15 on, early in the new year, to investigate the

16 situation.

17 Q. All right. Let me just digress for one

18 instant and raise the subject that you alluded to in

19 your direct testimony, sir, regarding aid convoys and

20 attacks launched upon aid convoys. Would it be fair to

21 say that there was a general problem of banditry

22 plaguing aid deliveries to needy areas during the --

23 during the war?

24 A. There was a problem of banditry. Banditry is

25 one of a number of problems. Banditry in itself was, I

Page 13433

1 would say, almost uniquely a -- the problem of Muslim

2 areas.

3 Q. Yes, sir. And there was actually an incident

4 in February of 1994, February the 14th, I believe, when

5 about 15 tonnes of aid were stolen from the Novi

6 Travnik area, and the Muslim military police just

7 looked on while this looting was going on and did

8 absolutely nothing about it; isn't that right?

9 A. That is true.

10 Q. And would it also be fair to say, sir, that

11 the problems of banditry, insofar as to aid convoys

12 were concerned, actually inside the Busovaca pocket,

13 had pretty much been brought under control by the HVO

14 Military Police during the time that you were in

15 Central Bosnia?

16 A. I do not recall any instances, what I would

17 describe as banditry within the Vitez Croat-controlled

18 area.

19 Q. All right. Sir, the next item I would like

20 to bring to your attention chronologically is the

21 offensive that followed the Christmas offensive of

22 1993. It's true that a major offensive was launched

23 against the narrow point in the Vitez-Busovaca pocket.

24 That's Santici, as you've describe, on January the 9th,

25 1993, and that is described in your diary; is that

Page 13434

1 correct?

2 A. Correct.

3 Q. All right. The military intelligence

4 summary, sir, that I referred to on February the 9th,

5 which is the next item that I'd like to cover with you,

6 is milinfosum 101, and I would like you to take a look

7 at that, if you would, and have it marked as the next

8 exhibit. Thank you.

9 MR. SAYERS: If the registrar would put

10 page 2 on the ELMO for the interpreters. At the bottom

11 of the page is what I'm interested in.

12 THE REGISTRAR: Document is marked D173/1.


14 Q. There is a reference in your diary, sir, on

15 page 19 to a meeting with Dario Kordic, who is referred

16 to as the HVO political leader in Central Bosnia. Do

17 you have any recollection of this meeting or what was

18 discussed at it?

19 A. I don't have any -- it doesn't strike me

20 particularly as anything that I can add to what I've

21 written in there.

22 Q. That's quite all right, Colonel. This was a

23 long time ago. But the comment or the intelligence

24 report is that Mr. Kordic was keen to point out that

25 the HVO were doing all they could to avoid UNPROFOR

Page 13435

1 during any fighting and was reported to be generally

2 co-operative. Presumably that was a report from you,

3 that you had found Mr. Kordic to be co-operative during

4 this meeting; is that right?

5 A. Well, he's saying that the HVO were being

6 co-operative, yes.

7 Q. Very well. In connection with the testimony

8 that you gave that Mr. Kordic was somehow the Assistant

9 Chief Of Staff to General Roso, were you aware that

10 General Roso had actually been appointed to the

11 Presidential Council to the Croatian Republic of

12 Herceg-Bosna to advise President Boban on strategic and

13 other matters?

14 A. I'm not aware of that.

15 Q. Just so that my question is clear, you were

16 not aware that he was actually a member of the

17 government of the HR H-B as well as being the head of

18 the military forces?

19 A. I knew him only as the leader of the military

20 forces.

21 Q. Very well. That brings us, Colonel, to the

22 February 21st, 1994 meeting. It's described first in

23 your contemporaneous diary at page 23, I believe. You

24 refer to this as a great showdown with the HVO in the

25 Vitez pocket, with a number of people being present,

Page 13436

1 Mr. Kordic, Colonel Blaskic, Marinko Bosjnak,

2 Mr. Rajic, and others. You also testified, sir, I

3 think during direct, that you presented Mr. Kordic with

4 the -- with a form letter that was to be distributed

5 both to the Croat side and Muslim side in connection

6 with a recent event; is that right? A protest letter.

7 A. Two protest letters but -- were different,

8 but the aim was similar.

9 Q. Was the protest letter actually addressed

10 specifically to Mr. Kordic? Let me just take a look at

11 that if I may.

12 A. I don't think it's addressed specifically to

13 anybody.

14 Q. Very well. Do you know whether Mr. Kordic

15 had been given any advanced notice that this document

16 was going to be laid upon him, if you like?

17 A. I don't think so.

18 Q. So it came as a surprise to him?

19 A. I assume so.

20 Q. All right. The observation is made in your

21 diary, sir, that after a tense period, all agreed to

22 try harder and Kordic magnanimously agreed to two

23 immediate casevacs being removed from LO Vitez by Stari

24 Vitez. Do you see that?

25 A. I see that.

Page 13437

1 Q. All right. And that represented your view

2 contemporaneously recorded; is that correct?

3 A. That is an abbreviated view. As I explained

4 earlier on, I first asked for these immediate casualty

5 evacuations and was turned down. I have to say I got

6 very upset about this, and that was when Sir Martin

7 Garrod stepped in to try one more time.

8 Q. Presumably he was a little calmer and the

9 issue was quickly worked out, wasn't it?

10 A. Older and wiser, I think.

11 Q. But issue was, nonetheless, quickly worked

12 out, was it not?

13 A. Relatively quickly.

14 Q. You did not prepare any other document other

15 than what we see in your diary that reflects this

16 conversation, did you?

17 A. Not that I'm aware of.

18 Q. And the only other document of which I'm

19 aware that refers to it is the milinfosum that has

20 previously been marked as Z1383.1. I just wonder if

21 you'd just put that in front of you, sir.

22 Now, sir, looking at paragraph 4 on page 1,

23 there's a report from your Liaison Officer. I take it

24 that your Liaison Officer was present at this meeting

25 too?

Page 13438

1 A. That's correct.

2 Q. All right. And Mr. Kordic was clearly the

3 Chairman of the meeting, presiding over the meeting,

4 with an important political figure present such as

5 Sir Martin Garrod, correct?

6 A. Mr. Kordic was chairing the meeting, I

7 think. I'm not sure whether Sir Martin Garrod's

8 presence has any bearing on that.

9 Q. All right. And the observation is made by

10 the Military Intelligence Officer that it is absolutely

11 apparent that Colonel Blaskic was far better informed

12 than Mr. Kordic on issues relating to the pocket. Is

13 that consistent with your recollection, sir?

14 A. I don't have a detailed recollection of that

15 aspect. That is the view of the Liaison Officer.

16 Q. So you can't help us one way or the other?

17 A. Can't say -- I can't say he's wrong.

18 Q. And two days later, sir, there was a

19 ceasefire agreement, as you've previously described,

20 signed in Zagreb, and I believe that the signatories

21 for the various warring factions once again were

22 General Delic on the Muslim side and General Roso on

23 the Croat side; is that correct?

24 A. Correct.

25 Q. And Mr. Kordic wasn't involved in any of

Page 13439

1 those negotiations, was he? Not as far as you know?

2 A. Not as far as I'm aware.

3 Q. Final subject, sir. You never saw any HV

4 troops or officers in the Vitez-Busovaca pocket at any

5 time during your tour of duty, did you?

6 A. I never saw any, no.

7 MR. SAYERS: Thank you very much, indeed.

8 That concludes my questions.

9 Q. Thank you very much, Colonel. I appreciate

10 your patience.

11 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honours, bearing in mind

12 that the witness spoke about the period of time

13 covering from 11th -- from November 1993 onward and it

14 doesn't cover the period for which my client,

15 Mr. Cerkez, has been accused, so that the Defence of

16 Mr. Cerkez has no questions for this witness.

17 JUDGE MAY: Any re-examination?

18 MS. SOMERS: Just a couple of points,

19 please.

20 Re-examined by Ms. Somers.

21 Q. Concerning, the use of the term "magnanimous"

22 in your diary about Mr. Kordic's giving over the Muslim

23 evacuees, what was the tone of that term? He

24 magnanimously gave it over. I think it's on page 23 of

25 the diary. February 21st entry.

Page 13440

1 A. Indeed. My clear recollection of the event

2 is that when Sir Martin Garrod entered the debate to

3 try and persuade Mr. Kordic that he, in what I would

4 describe as dismissive manner, stated, as I've said

5 earlier, words to the effect of "Well, if these two

6 Muslim children mean so much to you, then you can have

7 them."

8 Q. And there was a sarcastic tone, is that --

9 A. Yes. I think it could be described as

10 sarcastic.

11 Q. The attitude that was suggested that it was

12 held by General Merdan about allowing Colonel Blaskic

13 to travel, I'd just like to ask you to turn, if you

14 can, to the milinfosum from 18 November. It is in the

15 pile. Z1310.1, and in the interests of time I shall

16 read out the passage. It's paragraph 4 under Vitez.

17 It said: "The commanding officer visited Tihomir

18 Blaskic, Commander, HVO, 3rd Operational Zone, Central

19 Bosnia, today. When asked about the possibility of

20 allowing aid through to Stari Vitez, he relied, 'Why

21 should I give aid to my enemies?'" Do you recall

22 that?

23 A. Indeed I do.

24 Q. It was brought to your attention that

25 Colonel Blaskic was promoted to the main staff of the

Page 13441

1 HVO. Are you also aware that Colonel Blaskic was made

2 by General -- by President Tudjman a General in the

3 Croatian Army after he was indicted by this Tribunal?

4 A. I know -- I've read this in the newspaper

5 since, indeed.

6 Q. You have a background, Colonel, you

7 indicated, in Soviet affairs insofar as military-style

8 structures is concerned. Are you familiar with the

9 term "political officer" or "Polit Officer" or Zam

10 Polit"?

11 A. I am indeed.

12 Q. Can you comment on the nature of the

13 authority that would be vested in a Political Officer?

14 A. Normally a Political Officer would be,

15 although technically subordinate to the Commander,

16 would, in fact, be giving him advice on political

17 matters and effectively ensuring that party control was

18 maintained.

19 Q. And, in fact, was to -- had active

20 intervention potential in any situation?

21 MR. SAYERS: Objection to the leading nature

22 of that question, and it's a little beyond the scope of

23 direct examination, Your Honour.

24 JUDGE MAY: I agree.


Page 13442

1 Q. Are you also aware, in connection with

2 General Roso, that he was an HV Officer?

3 A. I am not aware where he came from. I knew

4 that he had been in the Foreign Legion.

5 Q. Counsel opposite raised a question about the

6 title or the role of Mr. Kordic as Assistant Chief Of

7 Staff to General Roso. Turning your attention briefly

8 to Exhibit -- it's actually an ECMM document that was

9 given in connection with a previous exhibit, but it's

10 Z1343, which is connected with, in terms of contents,

11 Z1363.

12 MR. SAYERS: Well, Your Honour, I did not ask

13 any questions about this document.

14 JUDGE MAY: I agree. Let's move on.

15 Anything more?

16 MS. SOMERS: I think we pretty well

17 covered --

18 Q. Krizancevo Selo. You indicated that there

19 was an investigation as to the allegations of massacre

20 by the Croats -- Croats alleging massacre on the

21 Croats. What conclusion was reached as to massacre?

22 A. The elaborate investigation was taken -- was

23 conducted at the spot where 27 of the bodies of those

24 who had allegedly been killed were buried. We exhumed

25 nine bodies in the presence of the BBC, amongst other

Page 13443

1 people. To the best of our limited knowledge, they all

2 appeared to be of military age and to have died in

3 extreme traumatic ways, that we assessed as being in

4 combat.

5 We then interviewed three men who had been

6 captured, who were in the gaol in Zenica, and we

7 eventually presented a report, not only to the U.N.

8 authorities, but also to the Croat military authorities

9 in the Vitez pocket.

10 Q. Then did your investigation sustain the

11 allegations by the Croats?

12 A. The investigation suggested that there was --

13 there was no evidence to support the theory of a

14 massacre. The evidence pointed to a tactical success

15 that had led to a considerable loss of life.

16 Q. Had it ever been brought to your attention

17 that there was implementation of a proposed plan called

18 Owen-Stoltenberg?

19 A. I was not aware, until this was brought up a

20 short time ago, of the details of the Owen-Stoltenberg

21 Plan

22 MS. SOMERS: Thank you very much. No further

23 questions.

24 JUDGE MAY: Colonel that concludes your

25 evidence. Thank you for coming to the International

Page 13444

1 Tribunal to give it. You are released.

2 [The witness withdrew]

3 MR. NICE: I was told by my learned friends

4 this morning that they would be cross-examining into

5 the middle of the afternoon, but time has gone more

6 quickly for them. I told them there probably wasn't a

7 witness available this afternoon. Sir Martin Garrod is

8 here, but he's expressed a desire to familiarise

9 himself with more of the documents than he was able to

10 familiarise himself with yesterday. And although I'll

11 have another word with him, it may be he would stick to

12 his preference of not starting to give evidence until

13 he's conducted a proper review, and it's probably his

14 entitlement, in the circumstances.

15 JUDGE MAY: The events took place six or

16 seven years ago, so it seems to me that he is probably

17 entitled to refresh his memory.

18 MR. NICE: There are some other matters that

19 can be dealt with. Can I list them?

20 First, there's another statement we wish to

21 add, another witness we wish to call. I'll hand in his

22 statement now, copies of it. If the usher would be so

23 good. Served on my learned friends on Friday, as soon

24 as we had it. I can deal with it all in due course

25 later. I gather there is objection to it.

Page 13445

1 It's a statement that deals with Stupni Do.

2 It comes from, effectively, an insider. It unlocks the

3 uncertainties about Stupni Do, if there were any. And

4 the Court will find its particular value, not least in

5 starting at paragraph 18. It may be that we could deal

6 with that this afternoon, or it may be that will want a

7 little more time to be dealt with.

8 The Chamber will recall that the witness -- I

9 think it's -- the Witness P in Blaskic. In any event,

10 the diplomat style witness, whose transcript we wished

11 to have read, but in respect of whom the Defence are

12 seeking to have called. And that, I think, in light of

13 earlier decisions, is something that has to be

14 discussed. Either Defence have to explain why they

15 want him called, to justify his being called, if he's

16 prima facie a witness whose transcript from the other

17 trial could or should be read. So that may be

18 something we could conveniently deal with this

19 afternoon.

20 I can bring you up to date with the witness

21 position. The Chamber will recall that the

22 difficulties we face this week arise from the fact that

23 Stutt has been denied us for the third time, I think,

24 the second or third time, by reason of his important

25 duties for the United Nations elsewhere.

Page 13446

1 He's the witness I had considered dealing

2 with by video-link, and although that would have

3 involved members of your staff undergoing the hardship

4 of travelling to New York, I was prepared to propose

5 that, if it was otherwise realistic. But in light of

6 both the volume of documents he'll have to deal with,

7 which is very difficult via video, and in light of the

8 fact that he's on a -- it's effectively been promised

9 that he can be here on the 28th of February, I'm

10 proposing to deal with him that way. But it's his

11 absence this week that creates the slight difficulties

12 that there are.

13 I had a discussion with Mr. Stein last Friday

14 about the witnesses producing the tape recording of

15 Kordic and Blaskic. The Chamber may recall there was

16 the possibility of their argument being dealt with

17 without evidence. It seemed to me it was going to be

18 very difficult for them not to want to have one of the

19 witnesses here, especially if they are challenging the

20 provenance of that tape.

21 A suggestion was made by Mr. Stein that they

22 could deal with the matter on paper, and just deal with

23 the legality of the taking of the tape as an issue. I

24 raised with him, "Well, if you are dealing with it on

25 paper, does that mean that your are abandoning any

Page 13447

1 arguments about the provenance of the tape?" And he

2 said he wasn't. It seemed to me impossible, really, to

3 leave matters on that unsatisfactory basis.

4 So I am making efforts to have the witness,

5 who deals with the provenance of the tape, available

6 this week. I shall probably know at lunch time whether

7 he is going to be available, before his deployment to

8 the United States of America.

9 So he may come as a witness to fill in. And

10 that issue may be dealt with later --

11 JUDGE MAY: The argument for that point is

12 listed for this week.

13 MR. NICE: It is listed for this week.

14 JUDGE MAY: Yes.

15 MR. NICE: But the Defence were going to let

16 me know whether they required the witnesses to attend,

17 and it was only when I saw their skeleton, or their

18 latest summarised objection, that I could see that it

19 might be very difficult for them to mount that argument

20 without having and cross-examining the evidence

21 itself. You can hardly challenge the provenance of a

22 document --

23 JUDGE MAY: Whatever the problems, we should

24 stick to this timetable, because if we let matters

25 slip, there will be a great deal to deal with at the

Page 13448

1 end.

2 MR. NICE: Absolutely. The witness, in

3 respect of whom a successful application was made to

4 add to the list last week, is not available this week.

5 He doesn't have travel documents. So I can't call

6 him.

7 And there is then outstanding the issue of

8 those -- was it six witnesses who were listed as

9 transcript witnesses in our latest amended overview of

10 the indictment -- overview of witnesses, a separate

11 list at the end of that document. We have yet to hear

12 what the Defence attitude towards those transcript

13 witnesses is. But that's something that might be dealt

14 with this week as well.

15 JUDGE MAY: We might be able to deal with

16 that, at least, in a --

17 MR. NICE: After lunch, there may be

18 something to deal with --

19 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Nice, let me finish.

20 MR. NICE: Sorry.

21 JUDGE MAY: The Defence should be ready at

22 least to give us a preliminary idea this afternoon

23 about the transcript witnesses. We can begin the

24 discussion. Yes.

25 MR. NICE: I'm so sorry to have interrupted

Page 13449

1 you. I'll have another word with Sir Martin, because,

2 obviously, if he is willing to press on, so much the

3 better. The only other way of dealing with it, would

4 be to take him through his evidence in chief, on the

5 basis that, uniquely with him, we are able to continue

6 discussing with him documents after the close of the

7 Court this afternoon, for the production of further

8 documents tomorrow.

9 I don't particularly press that, but that's

10 one way around the problem, if there are further

11 documents to be reviewed.

12 MR. SAYERS: Mr. President, I am more than

13 happy to let the Trial Chamber know what our position

14 is with respect to the transcript witnesses, once I

15 know who the transcript witnesses are. I really

16 don't.

17 MR. NICE: The document was placed in their

18 box on Friday, I having identified where they could

19 find it earlier on.

20 JUDGE MAY: All right. We'll resume this

21 discussion after lunch. If we can deal with the

22 witness, of course so much the better. But if not,

23 there are obviously other matters which we can deal

24 with. 2.35.

25 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.05 p.m.

Page 13450

1 --- On resuming at 2.40 p.m.

2 MR. NICE: General Garrod would like to

3 review his documents further, and indeed arrangements

4 were made for him to leave the Tribunal and come back

5 to complete that task a little later this afternoon.

6 So he's not available, I'm afraid. I acted on the

7 basis of the estimates of cross-examination that I was

8 given.

9 That leaves for determination this afternoon

10 maybe some other matters. The witness statement I've

11 just served is one to which, I gather, there is

12 objection. I don't know if the Chamber has had an

13 opportunity to look at it yet.

14 JUDGE MAY: Let us take that now, if you'd

15 like to take a seat. You recommend paragraphs 18

16 onwards?

17 MR. NICE: The whole of the document is of

18 value and very considerable value, but certainly in

19 order to save your time, I was going to invite you to

20 go straight to paragraph 18 for what it reveals about

21 Stupni Do. But, in fact, the whole of the document is

22 of great value.

23 JUDGE MAY: Before we hear the Defence

24 objection, Mr. Nice, it would be helpful to know how it

25 comes that this arrives so late in the day here.

Page 13451

1 MR. NICE: Certainly. This witness was not

2 known to the OTP prosecuting this case at all, save

3 that it may be the case that his name appears simply as

4 a name in a NordBat document, but it wasn't a NordBat

5 document or statement which was in any way part of the

6 Kordic or Blaskic set of papers. So he simply wasn't

7 known to those prosecuting this case.

8 A witness was called on the -- excuse my

9 leaning down, but I think it was the 2nd of December of

10 last year, and -- I'm just checking that he was --

11 well, let's assume that he was a protected witness, and

12 I won't name him. He gave his evidence, and after he

13 gave evidence and in the course of one of those

14 informal discussions that I think I told you about last

15 week, identified somebody who he then thought might be

16 able to help us, and I think -- my recollection is that

17 they were now neighbours, something to that effect, so

18 that he had more recently had an opportunity to talk to

19 him and told us that the man might be able to help us.

20 I think I've said before, witnesses, when

21 they're dealing with investigators or us in a formal

22 basis, are themselves quite alert to the distinction of

23 what they can say and what others can say and quite

24 careful about that. In any case, he volunteered this

25 name, a name not known to us before.

Page 13452

1 It was given immediate top priority by us, or

2 by me, and the witness was seen on a very preliminary

3 basis on part of the mission to Bosnia that was already

4 underway or planned and due to take place in a day or

5 so. And we wrote to the Defence on the 14th of

6 December, explaining to them that a witness who could

7 help with Vares had been located and saying that indeed

8 we hoped to be able to serve his statement before

9 Christmas, and I made further arrangements that the

10 witness might be seen by a local investigator.

11 May we go into private session for just a

12 minute, please.

13 [Private session]

14 (redacted)

15 (redacted)

16 (redacted)

17 (redacted)

18 (redacted)

19 (redacted)

20 (redacted)

21 (redacted)

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 13453

1 [Open session]

2 MR. NICE: Once seen, he was entirely

3 co-operative, and although I've taken precautions in

4 that last short passage to save his identity should he

5 seek protective measures, he may be a witness who won't

6 seek protective measures. I'm not sure about that.

7 So those are the circumstances in which he

8 came to our attention. There's no way we could have

9 known of him before. And having known of him, not only

10 have we done everything possible to obtain evidence

11 from him, but I have done everything possible to alert

12 the Defence to what would be likely to be coming, given

13 that, of course, until he was seen, we certainly

14 couldn't provide his name without his consent and so

15 on.

16 JUDGE MAY: When would you propose to call

17 him?

18 MR. NICE: His movements remain somewhat

19 difficult. He has indicated that he would be available

20 at the end of February, 28th of February, and we have

21 pressed him to hold that time available to us.

22 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Stein.

23 MR. STEIN: Thank you, sir. Preliminarily,

24 we do not have the Croatian version of this statement

25 available to review with our client, so I would like

Page 13454

1 you to consider that in any ruling that you make.

2 This statement was forwarded to us on Friday

3 evening, January 28th. Over the weekend I reviewed it

4 and was actually preparing an application to preclude

5 his testimony, and having done that, I would like to

6 file it with the Court now.

7 As Your Honours can see from the front of the

8 witness's statement, and this statement was taken on

9 January 21 and 26 of this year, but if you turn to

10 paragraph 33 of the witness's statement, you will see

11 that as of 28 October, 1993, this witness was working

12 with NordBat, one of the parts of the U.N. Protective

13 Force in Bosnia, and indeed lived in their camp for the

14 next six months, from October 1993 forward. Indeed, at

15 paragraph 28 of his statement, he references giving

16 documents to the NordBat Commander.

17 The short version of our application and the

18 short version for the reason we oppose this late entry

19 is it's simply untimely. Mr. Nice's reference to the

20 December 14th communication in which there was an

21 oblique reference to a witness that may be called if

22 they find someone, doesn't toll any responsibility or

23 trigger any responsibility on our part to respond

24 because there's nothing to respond to.

25 I don't believe the Prosecutor has clearly

Page 13455

1 told you why, having had this person's evidence since

2 1993, and why, having admitted that since it was in the

3 OTP's hands since that time, apparently, it wasn't

4 noticed.

5 Mr. Nice explains that he was not known to

6 the OTP, except by a NordBat document, which they

7 didn't recognise the significance of.

8 I don't know more about that. It's a rather

9 amorphous statement by the Prosecution, in response to

10 Your Honours' query. And I suggest that the

11 Prosecution, since 1993, 1994, certainly before

12 Mr. Kordic's original indictment, certainly after his

13 second indictment, and certainly before they prepared

14 this case, had the opportunity to look for these

15 witnesses, their documents and things, and should have

16 done so.

17 We are now faced with a growing number of

18 inches or feet of documents. We are now up to five

19 feet, two metres of documents served on us by the

20 Prosecution. International armed conflict documents,

21 village binders, we are still fighting the village

22 binder issue. They still include statements and an

23 overview by the prosecuting authority. We are still

24 required to look at all of them.

25 So instead of winding this case down,

Page 13456

1 preparing our case, and moving on to other things, we

2 are dealing with these late minute applications.

3 Now, we can read a statement, we can analyse

4 it, and we can get going on it. I'm not saying we

5 can't. But in the throws of where we are in this case,

6 it's wearing to the point of being prejudicial. So,

7 for those two reasons, prejudice, and the fact that

8 this is a six and a half year old statement, we object

9 to this witness being called.

10 JUDGE ROBINSON: How long was he with

11 NordBat?

12 MR. STEIN: According to his statement, Your

13 Honour, he was there six months. That's paragraph 33.

14 "I lived in their camp for the next six months."

15 JUDGE MAY: You say six and a half year old

16 statement.

17 MR. STEIN: No, no. I'm sorry, the statement

18 was taken in January, the year 2000.

19 JUDGE MAY: You mean it deals with events six

20 and a half years ago?

21 MR. STEIN: That's right. And the identity

22 of this individual, his co-operative nature, indeed he

23 was turning over to NordBat documents in 1993, that's

24 set out at paragraph 28 of his statement. That's been

25 extant for a long time.

Page 13457

1 Now, I am tempted to run on and talk about

2 our discussion we had about exculpatory evidence, and

3 searching for it, and affirmative obligations. I

4 understand masses of paper and volumes of boxes and the

5 difficulty, but the Prosecution has acknowledged that

6 they had this witness in their hands, if you will, in

7 the NordBat files. Someone apparently even saw his

8 name, but didn't recognise his significance.

9 There has to be an end.

10 I am reminded, of course, that your order of

11 May 17th required the Prosecution to set out -- yes.

12 That the Prosecution was required by May 17, as per

13 your April 1 order, I believe, to give us all the

14 witnesses that they had. So certainly a thorough

15 search should have and ought to have been done at that

16 time, similar to, if you will, a search for exculpatory

17 evidence, which we have debated.

18 There just has to be a cut-off, there has to

19 be a time, and the Prosecution has to be held

20 accountable. That's all I have to say.

21 MR. NICE: Can I correct a number of things

22 that have been said there.

23 First of all, we must excise all reference to

24 the documents. They have got nothing to do with this

25 case. The documents that are being provided now, are

Page 13458

1 being provided in the part, of course, of a different

2 exercise. Statements, were it not providing -- I'll

3 just deal with it now, although it's got nothing to

4 deal with the application, I might as well just deal

5 with it. When we are asked not to provide statements

6 to the Defence, that are duplicates of statements, they

7 are now requiring us to serve them. So a large

8 proportion of the material that they now have, and now

9 apparently want, will be duplication. No, we are not

10 serving overviews or summaries of village witness

11 binders. What we've said is that the indices were

12 prepared separately, and they identify that a summary

13 has been prepared. It hasn't been served on the

14 Defence nor on the Court, because we checked what was

15 at one stage thought to be an ambiguous ruling with one

16 of your staff, and they haven't been served

17 thereafter.

18 So that's simply a diversion. It's got

19 nothing to do with this very important application.

20 Further, when Mr. Stein says that this

21 witness was providing statements to NordBat, I am not

22 quite sure I follow what he is referring to, because I

23 don't see that in the statement at all.

24 What happened was that he, according to his

25 own statement, was given a document authorising him to

Page 13459

1 make arrests, and he handed that to NordBat. He didn't

2 make statements. And he was, no doubt, then protected

3 by NordBat, because he was a man under threat of arrest

4 by those who wouldn't be very pleased, perhaps, with

5 what he had done.

6 Mr. Stein then says, "We saw his name."

7 That's not true. I explained to the Chamber that

8 following discovery of his name, in the way I

9 described, we just checked every document that we

10 could, by electronic databases and so on, to see if his

11 name appears at all. It happens to appear somewhere,

12 and I still don't know precisely where, as a listed

13 name. There are loads of names in loads of

14 statements. There is no suggestion that the name shows

15 up as of any significance. And the originating NordBat

16 document, whatever it is, whether it's a statement or a

17 report or something of that sort, itself plainly didn't

18 have relevance for our inquiry. And it's absolutely

19 ridiculous to suggest that that, in any way, makes this

20 an untimely application.

21 This was a man simply not known of by us.

22 And it would be nice to think that people, in the

23 former Yugoslavia, simply volunteered to come and help

24 the Tribunal. They don't. Very occasionally they do,

25 but for the most part they don't. They keep quiet

Page 13460

1 until somebody approaches them. And the means by which

2 they are discovered vary.

3 So this man was unknown to us, there was

4 absolutely no way he could or should have been known to

5 us, unless we stumbled upon him and for some reason

6 picked up a name and gone on and spoken to him. And

7 that simply isn't something we can do, nor something we

8 should be expected to do.

9 The statement is, of course, of enormous

10 importance. I accept that. If accepted, it clears up

11 some of the otherwise uncertainty that might exist

12 about the history of Stupni Do. Stupni Do, the

13 second largest event that you are concerned with in

14 this trial --

15 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Nice, to

16 which paragraph, particularly, are you referring to?

17 What, in your opinion, are very important or which adds

18 something new, compared to what we had before? Which

19 paragraph?

20 MR. NICE: Almost everything from -- on this

21 particular topic, almost everything, from paragraph 19

22 onwards, provides first-hand, and with clarity,

23 material that is either new or detailed, and that

24 simply wasn't available before.

25 Can I remind the Chamber, and this is one of

Page 13461

1 the reasons I was slightly reluctant about dealing with

2 this this afternoon, because I hadn't done a

3 comprehensive check, but can I remind the Chamber of

4 some of the things that have been advanced so far on

5 behalf of the Defence about Stupni Do.

6 It's been advanced that the village was

7 defended. It's been raised that the events there were

8 linked to crime, and to the use of the place as a black

9 market centre. It's been suggested that this was a

10 case of excesses in the course of inter-communal

11 fighting, and that it was the result of what has been

12 described as fighting in a built-up area. And there's

13 been some heavy reference made to the fact that the

14 inhabitants were warned and declined to evacuate

15 themselves from their area.

16 Now, that's the way the issue's been joined.

17 There has been somewhere some suggestion, and I haven't

18 yet tracked it down, that the attack on Stupni Do was

19 indeed a form of calculated ethnic cleansing; that is

20 to say, if you attack the Muslims with sufficient

21 ferocity in a place where the Croats are already

22 vulnerable, then you will drive the remaining Croats

23 from the town and thus comply with your overall plan of

24 dividing the ethnic groupings. There's been some

25 evidence of but not a very great deal. And one of the

Page 13462

1 features of Stupni Do is that away from this court, to

2 some degree, and in the ordinary talk about the place,

3 that possibility is one of the competing theories for

4 why it happened.

5 We now see, to return more directly to His

6 Honour Judge Bennouna's question, that paragraph 19,

7 first there is the plan that the local Croats should

8 combine with the local Serbs, but the local Croats were

9 resistant to that, and they sent a letter to Grude

10 saying that they didn't require the assistance of the

11 Serbs, they would seek safe passage via Serbia

12 territory for their injured, and an order coming from

13 Grude was apparently signed by Dario Kordic; new and

14 extremely important, even if it was signed on behalf of

15 someone else.

16 That response, paragraph 20, was not

17 accepted, and thus it was that Ivica Rajic, the

18 indicted person from Kiseljak, arrived. He arrived via

19 Serb territory with units of whom you have heard

20 insofar as the Apostoli and Maturice have been referred

21 to. I'm not sure that the Sioux have been.

22 It sets out what we've already known a little

23 of about Rajic, and Rajic says he'd been sent there by

24 Kordic and Praljak.

25 I pause to observe. I haven't had a chance

Page 13463

1 to check against the papers lodged in relation to

2 Rajic, even if they'd be available to me -- I'm not

3 sure they would be -- for the confirmation of his

4 indictment, but this statement is highly likely to be a

5 central statement, if not the central statement, in

6 that case if that man is eventually arrested.

7 21, Grude wanted to evacuate the Croat

8 population from the town, and in later discussions,

9 Rajic told the witness that there was an agreement

10 between Croatia and Serbia whereby Vares, Zepce, and

11 Kiseljak were to go to the BH Army because they weren't

12 part of the overall plan.

13 22, he deals with the visits of Kordic to

14 Vares. I think there's been cross-examination to the

15 effect that there was one and only one visit by him

16 there. So that's new, hard, and challenged evidence or

17 will be evidence that is to be challenged.

18 On the 20th of October, the three names were

19 arrested by the HVO, and at a later meeting conducted

20 by Rajic, there were the Commanders of those three

21 special units.

22 24 is, of course, is a central paragraph.

23 Rajic claimed he had an order by Praljak, Kordic, and

24 Boban, which he held up for people to see. The witness

25 read the order. The order said that the passage had

Page 13464

1 been provided to Croats via the Republika Srpska, in

2 exchange for a territorial concession, and that Croats

3 should move out, it says, of Central Bosnia, but that

4 may need some amplification. The transport was to be

5 provided by Herceg-Bosna and Vares. The Muslim men and

6 the remaining Serbs should be arrested and detained in

7 the high school centre, and we've heard quite a lot

8 about that. We've heard indeed about the named

9 family.

10 Then this: Three Muslim areas named should

11 be taken. At that stage, one of the people present

12 interrupted and said, "These places are too far away.

13 We have an enemy right here in town." Rajic left the

14 meeting, made a phone call, returns and says, "The

15 priority is to arrest Muslims. Stupni Do should be

16 taken." This is all additional material and which

17 simply illuminates, from the position of an insider,

18 what happened.

19 The order stated that the three units were to

20 help the places under threat of attack, and they're

21 named again, and then deals with the replacement of the

22 military leadership. The names that are spoken of

23 there as being replaced are names either for the most

24 part or all of which you've heard. There may be an

25 issue arising in relation to what this witness says or

Page 13465

1 what you've seen already in a document number 1258

2 about when this replacement occurred, whether it

3 occurred before or at the time of Stupni Do or

4 afterwards. But in any event, there's a little bit of

5 evidence about those last couple of sentences that this

6 witness would appear to be in a position to amplify.

7 25 --

8 [Trial Chamber confers]

9 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Nice, I

10 didn't ask you to give us the whole testimony in

11 detail, because I think there's something in the

12 procedure that I can't quite grasp without entering

13 into the details of a future testimony, which we don't

14 know whether it will take place or not. So my question

15 was of a general nature, without entering into detail.

16 I think we have had sufficient information. I simply

17 asked for an indication, rather than delivering a whole

18 speech about that testimony. I think we can stop

19 there, as far as I am concerned at least.

20 JUDGE MAY: One matter which must be of

21 concern is if we were to grant this, and we haven't

22 discussed it, and of course, we may not, but if we were

23 to grant it, how many more such applications are we to

24 be faced with?

25 MR. NICE: That question needs an answer in

Page 13466

1 two parts, and I'd like to make it, but just to

2 conclude with His Honour Judge Bennouna's point, of

3 course paragraph 26 is critical, because it does unlock

4 the history. And 29 explains something that needs

5 explaining. I think there's a word missing there, but,

6 nevertheless, the sense is clear.

7 The Chamber will recall that there has been

8 evidence of, I think, one HOS insignia found on the

9 ground. You may have thought at the time odd that an

10 insignia should simply be deposited, and that's the

11 explanation for that. It was a deliberate plan.

12 Dealing with Your Honour's question, and I

13 say it comes in two parts, I think the answer is:

14 None. I'll be corrected by Mr. Scott and Ms. Verhaag;

15 I'm not sure of any outstanding inquiries that -- there

16 are other witnesses to be considered, but I'm not sure

17 of any other outstanding inquiries that are likely to

18 lead to applications of this type, but I'm very

19 concerned that there should be no implication or

20 suggestion that the applications are in any way to be

21 associated with error or under-performance by the

22 Prosecution, not at all. On each occasion with these

23 matters --

24 JUDGE MAY: I don't think that suggestion has

25 been made.

Page 13467

1 MR. NICE: I'm grateful.

2 JUDGE MAY: You made it plain that it was a

3 new witness, although the Defence contests that, but

4 your case is this is somebody who wasn't known to you

5 at all.

6 MR. NICE: In which case, may I simply

7 conclude in this way, because the importance of this

8 particular -- before I move to my closing remarks, I

9 must just check. Would you give me a minute with my

10 colleagues. I don't want to overlook anything

11 outstanding since you asked the question.

12 MR. STEIN: May I take this opportunity. We

13 have a 35-paragraph statement. The paragraphs that

14 Mr. Nice is reading apparently are less different than

15 the ones I have numbered.

16 JUDGE MAY: Yes, you referred to paragraph

17 33. I thought you were referring to something else.

18 It's paragraph 30 in our statement.

19 MR. STEIN: Ah, well, ours are differently

20 numbered for some reason.

21 JUDGE MAY: That's something, which if

22 necessary, will have to be straightened out.

23 MR. STEIN: Beg your pardon, sir.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Being generous to you. You

25 have more.

Page 13468

1 MR. STEIN: Thank you for that, Your Honour.

2 I appreciate it.

3 [Trial Chamber confers]

4 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Nice, you've now had a chance

5 to consult. Any more witnesses?

6 MR. NICE: I think there are no other

7 witnesses that fall into this category. There are

8 other witnesses to be dealt with like the tape and the

9 Mr. Hadzihasanovic, but there is nothing that falls

10 into the category --

11 JUDGE MAY: These are witnesses who were on

12 the original list.

13 MR. NICE: Hadzihasanovic wasn't, the tape

14 witnesses weren't because the tape hadn't been

15 discovered, but by and large, I think other witnesses

16 who have been known. I'm not even sure that there are

17 any more outstanding applications, but my very

18 respectful suggestion to the Chamber would be that, of

19 course, each application has to be looked at on its

20 own, and that this one matches precisely the principles

21 that were applied when we looked at the witness who was

22 added last week in relation to the checkpoint, that not

23 to take this evidence, and I've only looked at half of

24 the statement, the other half is also critical to an

25 understanding of what happened, but not to take this

Page 13469

1 evidence will be to oblige yourselves to act on

2 inference from exiguous material where plentiful

3 material now exists, that it makes your task much more

4 difficult not to take the evidence, and indeed it makes

5 for uncertainty where certainty -- or it may make for

6 uncertainty where certainty is available, especially

7 leaving us to argue from inferences without the

8 guidance of evidence that would have been called.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, while my own

10 philosophy is that procedure must subserve the wider

11 purposes of substantive law, there is a virtue in

12 procedure, in time limits, that the discipline and the

13 rigor, which is called for, allows the Chamber to

14 organise its work, and I don't think we should overlook

15 that.

16 I mean, I would be very concerned if a week

17 before the estimated closing dates of the Prosecution's

18 case, the Prosecution were to make similar requests.

19 So I think the President's question is very important,

20 to ascertain whether we are really at the end of

21 requests of this kind.

22 MR. NICE: It may be on that particular

23 topic, but were we to debate the matter freely and

24 fully, Your Honour and I would have slightly different

25 views. Because the mission of this institution is to

Page 13470

1 establish the truth. And, indeed, those on this side

2 are only concerned to lay before you the material that

3 will enable you the best to get at the truth. We are

4 not here to win, as I've said before and repeat. Our

5 function is quite specific.

6 And therefore, and I must underline this, a

7 witness like this arising, doesn't arise, so far as I

8 can judge, through any shortfall in the professional

9 performance of all those involved and, indeed, you will

10 know, because I have said it in their praise on many

11 occasions. To get the best evidence to you in this

12 Tribunal involves a huge amount of work, by dedicated

13 people, large chunks of it never paid. And the people

14 are working from 7.30 until 10, seven days a week,

15 to get this material to you.

16 And so that it is very important, that

17 although timeliness and procedure is, of course, a

18 proper concern, and perhaps particularly a concern in a

19 true adversarial setting, where you've got people

20 concerned about the passage of money from pocket to

21 pocket in a civil case, then shortcomings in procedure

22 may more properly be visited on the person whose

23 shortcoming it is. But whereas here the mission is

24 different. I would very respectfully say that the

25 priority has to be getting the best evidence. And it

Page 13471

1 is almost an overriding priority, although, of course,

2 procedure has its part to play.

3 And can I invite you to judge that

4 proposition of mine in this way. First, of course, you

5 could put a parallel for Ahmici, because Ahmici is even

6 more famous. I mean, if a witness were to come who, as

7 it were, had been the right-hand man until shortly

8 before of the person involved in leading the attack,

9 would it not really be your duty to listen to that

10 evidence, rather than to say, for any procedural reason

11 that it should be excised. In our submission, it

12 would, in fact, be the Chamber's duty to listen to it.

13 Viewed another way, and knowing that we do --

14 Rajic, for example, is not yet arrested. It's hoped

15 that he will be. There's one other thing I must say.

16 If Rajic isn't arrested, the people of Stupni Do are

17 entitled to the best answer, at any trial where this

18 matter is litigated, to the question that is reflected

19 in the memorial they put up for their 38 dead. Of

20 course it's a memorial that speaks of genocide, but

21 they regard this in their village as the seminal

22 event. It's a village which is being rebuilt. The

23 memorial is in stone, and it may be there for years,

24 centuries.

25 How wrong it would be, with great respect,

Page 13472

1 Your Honour, if in 100 or 200 years time people say,

2 "Well, was it what's alleged?" And they will say, "We

3 never knew because, by chance, the witness who could

4 have been heard by the Tribunal, whose findings we know

5 about, wasn't located until a rather late date."

6 The greater interest must be in having this

7 evidence, and the consequences of not having it will be

8 grave for the various missions that we are all engaged

9 in.

10 JUDGE MAY: I think, Mr. Nice, we've got the

11 point. We could have heard the witness, I suspect, in

12 this time.

13 MR. NICE: Well, I'm sorry. There it is.

14 [Trial Chamber confers]

15 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Nice,

16 will you now put on your headset. I am sorry to force

17 you to do that, but I do understand what you are saying

18 in English, while speaking French. But what you are

19 saying, and what worries me, is you said that the

20 important thing is to arrive at the truth, and it is

21 the duty of us all that the truth be established. Of

22 course, within the framework of the available means and

23 possibilities of the Tribunal.

24 What I am trying to say, very briefly, is

25 that the possibility that was offered you was offered

Page 13473

1 you within the time frame allotted for the

2 Prosecution's case, which, as you know, has been set,

3 and you accepted it, even though you objected to it,

4 sometimes rather vehemently, but you agreed that these

5 terms should expire on the 10th of March.

6 Now, we should like to let you know that this

7 is not subject to change, and that, therefore, the

8 truth has to be pursued with all the means, but by the

9 deadline which has been set for the 10th of March. And

10 I repeat it once again, that in spite of your work,

11 which we have accepted, and I am saying that it is out

12 of the question to change the deadline by which the

13 Prosecutor has to finish the presentation of his case,

14 and that is the 10th of March. That is what I wanted

15 to say. Trial Chamber.

16 [Trial Chamber confers]

17 JUDGE MAY: Having considered this case over

18 an extended period of time, and also this witness

19 statement, we are satisfied that the evidence is

20 potentially of importance and of probative value under

21 the Rule. The weight, of course, will be for us to

22 determine.

23 We are also satisfied that this was not a

24 witness who was known to the Prosecution before last

25 month, and therefore it's in the interests of justice

Page 13474

1 to call the witness. There would be no prejudice to

2 the Defence, providing they have the opportunity to

3 prepare for the witness, which they would have. It's

4 part of the duty of this Tribunal to try and establish

5 the truth, and it would not affect the fairness of the

6 trial, to have this witness called. Indeed, it may

7 make the trial fairer, in the sense of enabling the

8 Prosecution to put their full case.

9 On the other hand, we underline what has just

10 been said, that the 10th of March is the date by which

11 the Prosecution must finish their case, in our view.

12 There is great concern about the length of time which

13 these trials are taking, and it's our duty to ensure

14 that they be dealt with as expeditiously as possible.

15 For those reasons, we shall allow this

16 witness to be called.

17 If there are any more applications, of course

18 we will consider them, but we have noted what the

19 Prosecutor has said about the likelihood that there

20 will be none. And, in fact, that is a course which we

21 would support.

22 There is one other aspect of the matter,

23 which I do want to deal with, although it's rather

24 late. And that is the references to five and a half

25 feet of material. Even allowing a little exaggeration,

Page 13475

1 that does seem to be a very large amount to be serving

2 at this stage.

3 MR. NICE: As I said, the material is in part

4 duplicative, in that it is re-submitting statements

5 that have already been submitted earlier. We've, I

6 think, revised the procedure, so that now statements

7 are indexed and not actually provided.

8 The quantity of material provided, of course,

9 is the material that is necessary to provide, if we are

10 to attempt resolution in a timely way of the issues

11 about the villages. I've just had a letter from the

12 Defence about the Kiseljak binder. I'll try and deal

13 with it overnight, and raise with the Chamber any

14 issues that arise tomorrow. But I'm afraid that the

15 necessity of making the material available does require

16 there to be quite a lot of material, quite a lot of

17 copying. I wish it were otherwise, but nothing has

18 been admitted and, therefore, everything has to be

19 approved.

20 Can I raise a couple of other matters while

21 we are here? I don't know if there is anything else on

22 that, that the Chamber wants from us.

23 I was going to -- I was going, impertinently,

24 to go back to my exchange with Judge Robinson. I said,

25 right at the beginning of the case, I wouldn't use the

Page 13476

1 words "with great respect," for fear of the fact that

2 it might infer that I meant the reverse. On this

3 occasion, I found I used the phrase twice, and I meant

4 it, because I did understand the genuine concerns for

5 different approaches to procedural matter. But I

6 thought I would make that quite clear.

7 Right. Amongst the other issues that we

8 have, one of them is a witness who I -- can we go into

9 private session, briefly?

10 [Private session]

11 (redacted)

12 (redacted)

13 (redacted)

14 (redacted)

15 (redacted)

16 (redacted)

17 (redacted)

18 (redacted)

19 (redacted)

20 (redacted)

21 (redacted)

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 13477












12 pages 13477 - 13481 redacted in private session














Page 13482

1 (redacted)

2 (redacted)

3 (redacted)

4 (redacted)

5 (redacted)

6 (redacted)

7 (redacted)

8 (redacted)

9 (redacted)

10 (redacted)

11 (redacted)

12 (redacted)

13 (redacted)

14 (redacted)

15 (redacted)

16 (redacted)

17 (redacted)

18 (redacted)

19 (redacted)

20 (redacted)

21 [Open session]

22 JUDGE MAY: He appears -- and then after him

23 appears the Vares witness. Is that the witness we've

24 been dealing with?

25 MR. NICE: I'm not sure which list Your

Page 13483

1 Honour is now looking at.

2 JUDGE MAY: I'm looking at the most recent

3 one, which at the bottom refers to a Vares witness.

4 MR. NICE: I'm afraid I don't have the exact

5 copy Your Honour has. I'll just look at it on the

6 screen. Yes. That's correct. That's the witness now

7 identified to the Chamber.

8 Just to bring the Chamber up to date with the

9 rest of the week, I'm going to be informed this

10 afternoon if the tape witness is going to be here. I

11 hope he will be here on Wednesday afternoon. I don't

12 know.

13 I should tell the Chamber and my learned

14 friends that the witness who produces the front-line

15 maps will be available later this week. We'll get a

16 report to them as soon as we can.

17 I think that the outstanding issues that

18 might conveniently be dealt with -- I don't know

19 whether it's possible for them to be dealt with

20 today -- the outstanding issues to be dealt with really

21 relate to the transcript witnesses who we listed on the

22 10th of November, in the separate annex at the back,

23 and there are some seven witnesses.

24 We've had no response in respect of any of

25 them save for number six, and, of course, he was

Page 13484

1 called, Colonel Stewart. And we've had a response

2 about number seven, which we may be able to deal with

3 which by agreement, but I don't think we've had any

4 responses in relation to the balance. Oh, yes. That's

5 right. Number eight, we are told, is a witness who is

6 required but not with any reasons given. And number

7 eight, incidentally, is a witness who Mr. Scott will be

8 able to deal with, because he is a witness who requires

9 some sensitivity of treatment, like Witness AA did,

10 probably not quite the same regime but not dissimilar,

11 and Mr. Scott's the person on our team able to deal

12 with all that.

13 JUDGE MAY: I notice in the document you

14 refer to where you set these witnesses out, that there

15 are references to the accused in these transcripts.

16 MR. NICE: Yes.

17 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Stein or Mr. Sayers, can you

18 give us an answer on these transcripts? I don't think

19 we want it now, it's late, but could you put it into

20 writing by, say, the end of the week?

21 MR. SAYERS: We can do that. And let me just

22 correct an error. I said we did not know the identity

23 of these eight witnesses earlier. Apparently, we did;

24 I had just forgotten. But we can certainly present the

25 Court with -- or the Prosecution with a written

Page 13485

1 response to this by the end of the week if that would

2 be possible.

3 JUDGE MAY: Yes. While the Defence are

4 dealing with matters, there's one matter that I want to

5 raise with them. Mr. Stein, from time to time you have

6 been submitting that your case would be shorter if you

7 had a longer break after the Prosecution. We are now

8 in the position that we are considering how long that

9 break should be. We shall not, it appears, be taking

10 another case. Therefore, the in the normal course of

11 events, we would want to get on with this case as

12 expeditiously as possible, but so far, I don't think

13 you've explained why you're asking for longer time.

14 MR. STEIN: Would you like me to now?

15 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Why not.

16 MR. STEIN: Short answer again -- because of

17 my stature I'm answer giving short answers -- whenever

18 I set aside the time or other members of our staff set

19 a time to meet, to confer, to hone down our witness

20 list, to make sure we're not being duplicative and/or

21 set aside the time to meet with co-counsel, it seems

22 like we have another stack of paper to look at, another

23 stack of things to analyse. I won't repeat what

24 Mr. Sayers just said. So instead of focusing now on

25 what should be, we are focusing on wrapping this case

Page 13486

1 up and dealing with the surprises that the Prosecution

2 throws our way at the last minute. So that's the short

3 first version.

4 When this case is behind us or at least

5 towards the end, we will also, of course, be working

6 very hard on, I think, the most important issue now

7 affront, how much of the Prosecution's case will be

8 allowed to go forward. We intend and already have put

9 a substantial effort into that endeavour, and that, I

10 think, will chart our course based on, of course, your

11 ruling and the witnesses that will then be needed if,

12 as I am cautiously optimistic, much if not most of the

13 Prosecution's case is no longer with us.

14 Moreover, there are still witnesses who need

15 to be looked at, spoken with, testimonies made sure,

16 verified, and all the other things we do. It's the old

17 classic, and I'm sure it's not unique to the United

18 States. My brief would have been shorter if I had more

19 time, and that's the identical situation we have here.

20 JUDGE MAY: Thank you.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Stein,

22 you come from a pragmatic culture, and I believe you

23 should also endeavour to be pragmatic in this case.

24 When you open your case, you do not have to have

25 everything prepared in advance. You can begin with

Page 13487

1 things which are certain and then to -- then ask the

2 Chamber for a delay so as -- within which you would

3 propose the final list.

4 You know, our problem, because we do not

5 really want to prolong unduly the break, because today

6 the Chamber did not take another case so that we should

7 like indeed to work as expeditiously as possible, in

8 the interests of the Tribunal.

9 If you want to separate things, for instance,

10 to propose a plan so as to begin while still reserving

11 the time to propose the final list of -- the final list

12 while observing a certain number of procedural elements

13 and everything else, that, perhaps, would give you

14 enough time to make a compromise between your concern

15 and our concern, and I believe we should work in that

16 direction.

17 MR. STEIN: And I appreciate those

18 suggestions, Your Honour. It is my hope, however, that

19 when we present you with your pre-trial statement, it

20 will include all of our witnesses. We won't be asking

21 for applications down the road. It will have

22 everything we need.

23 It is my fondest hope that when we open our

24 case and make our opening address, we will tell you

25 exactly what our case is, with no surprises. Perhaps

Page 13488

1 that's a different approach, different method, but with

2 respect, I'd like to have the book written and then

3 present it to you as opposed to giving you each chapter

4 of manuscript.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Stein, I'm not sure

6 whether you have already given an indication, when I

7 wasn't here, but do you have a particular period of

8 time in mind?

9 MR. STEIN: I didn't give a specific month or

10 months, as I recall, although I may stand to be

11 corrected. I am corrected, yes. The number of

12 witnesses ran through my head, the months didn't. On

13 the record I had said previously our case would last

14 between five and nine months, and that we had

15 approximately 100 witnesses. I also hedged, as much as

16 I could, because that's a guesstimate, an estimate, and

17 that was the best I could do at that period of time.

18 So the short answer is what you missed is the

19 five to nine months, and the approximately 100

20 witnesses.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, I meant the time between

22 the close of the Prosecution's case and --

23 MR. STEIN: Yes, I'm sorry. We asked for six

24 weeks, Your Honour.

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Six weeks. Thank you.

Page 13489

1 MR. STEIN: Thank you, sir.

2 JUDGE MAY: We'll adjourn now until tomorrow

3 morning, half past 9.

4 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned

5 at 3.55 p.m. to be reconvened on

6 Tuesday, the 1st day of

7 February, 2000 at 9.30 a.m.