1 Monday, 12
2 [Open session]
3 [The witness entered court]
4 [The accused entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.30 a.m.
6 JUDGE HUNT: Call the case, please.
7 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Case IT-97-25-T, the Prosecutor
8 against Milorad Krnojelac.
9 JUDGE HUNT: Before we go on with the witness, there are a number
10 of things which I think have some urgency to dispose of.
11 I'm sorry, sir. If you could just wait a few moments. A few
12 things have blown up since you've been away.
13 Mr. Bakrac, there are applications for protective measures for
14 Witnesses 69, 89, and the third witness whom the Prosecution want to call,
15 249. Have you got any objection to those applications?
16 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, no. I mean, nothing in
17 addition to what has been said already on such occasions.
18 JUDGE HUNT: That's taken as agreed. Yes. Thank you very much
20 Well, then, those applications in relation to 69, 89, and the
21 witness to be known as 249 for protective measures sought will be
23 Now, there is a problem with the Sarajevo videolink date. We're
24 told by the Registry that the shortage of staff, because they're working
25 on some other videolinks at that time, that date is impossible. It
1 certainly shows you that we're here in Holland when you get that answer,
2 that it is not possible.
3 Is there any particular reason why it has to be the 21st of
5 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: No, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE HUNT: May I suggest that somebody from the Prosecution
7 speak to the people who actually arrange these things, find out which is
8 the best day, and if you can get an agreement with them as to when you can
9 get the Sarajevo videolink up and running - that was for 137 - we will
10 make the order.
11 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: It is for 137 and 49. There are two,
13 JUDGE HUNT: I'm sorry. You're quite right, yes.
14 All right. Then we'll deal with those as soon as you can find out
15 a date.
16 Well, sir, we can come back to your evidence. You are still bound
17 by the solemn declaration you took when you were here on the former
18 occasion. Do you understand that?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] [No translation]
20 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you very much. Yes, Ms. Kuo.
21 MS. KUO: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I'm aware of that.
23 WITNESS: EKREM ZEKOVIC [Resumed]
24 [Witness answered through interpreter]
25 Examined by Ms. Kuo: [Continued]
1 Q. Good morning, Mr. Zekovic. Over the break we were able to obtain
2 a transcript of your prior testimony, and I have a few questions to ask to
3 clarify some things that you testified to earlier.
4 MS. KUO: I'll give the transcript page reference for the benefit
5 of the Court and counsel.
6 Q. On page 3499 of the transcript, you testified that Juso Dzamalija
7 killed himself in the KP Dom. Do you know how he was identified, that is,
8 how his body was identified?
9 A. I know that some kind of commission came in. There was some kind
10 of doctor there, some kind of medical staff, and that they certified that
11 he was dead. We heard that from the windows, as they were talking
12 downstairs. He had hanged himself. That's what I heard.
13 Q. Do you know why he hanged himself? Did you hear that?
14 A. Well, I can only make assumptions. I cannot say with 100 per cent
15 certainty. I think that the man simply could not take all the torture
16 that he was subjected to.
17 Q. Do you know what torture specifically he was subjected to?
18 A. I know that they beat him several times.
19 Q. Mr. Zekovic, on page 3439 you stated that before you were arrested
20 and taken to the KP Dom, there was a time when you and other Muslim
21 neighbours were rounded up in a cellar, and at that time some Serbian
22 soldiers, according to your words, wanted to kill a Muslim neighbour who
23 had a mental problem. And you testified, "But they did not. Not then."
24 Can you tell us what happened to that neighbour who had the mental
25 problems? Did something happen to him later?
1 A. He remained in that street for a long time. The last persons from
2 my street were among the last people to be expelled from town in general.
3 That was in August 1992. They were transferred on buses to Montenegro.
4 That was when he was transferred as well. I don't know what happened to
5 him afterwards, though. However, my street, our street, was among the
6 last to be cleansed, ethnically cleansed in town.
7 Q. And was that the time when your family was also expelled?
8 A. Yes, yes. All of them.
9 Q. On page 3490 you described how a group of skilled metal shop
10 workers were taken from the KP Dom in the late summer of 1992, and that
11 Relja complained about this group of his workers being taken. You
12 mentioned three names: Suad Islambasic, Abdulah Kameric, and Uzier --
13 Hadzalic, sorry, and Uzeir Hadzalic. Do you remember how many people were
14 in that group who were taken out?
15 A. There was another one, Ismet Karahasanovic, and there was yet
16 another one. But I don't know, I don't know.
17 Q. Do you know how they were taken out?
18 A. I don't know exactly how they were taken out. When they left, I
19 was outside the working place. I was sent out to do some work, so I did
20 not see how it all actually happened.
21 Q. Of the men --
22 A. There is one thing I do know, though. Uzeir Hadzalic was told by
23 them on several occasions that he would be released because he was over 60
24 years old, and allegedly, according to some kind of law, such persons
25 would be released. However, he was taken away and nothing has been heard
1 about him since, or anybody from that group, for that matter.
2 Q. On page 3570 you testified that the guards who helped detainees
3 were sent away from work. What do you mean by "sent away from work"?
4 What happened to those guards?
5 A. They were sent to other working places, far more difficult ones
6 or, rather, far more dangerous ones. People who tried in some way to help
7 us -- I mean, these were very small things. Somebody would either bring
8 tobacco, cigarettes, or a shaver or something like that, or messages from
9 that person's family, whatever. However, if that were found out, then
10 this was punished rigorously.
11 Many asked me not to mention their names, as a matter of fact,
12 because they could have problems. One of them told me directly that once
13 he was released I should never mention his name, not to thank him in that
14 way. However, the time will come when you will be able to do that, but
15 not now, not for the time being. Do you understand that? I cannot give
16 you their names. They still can have problems.
17 Q. Do you know who sent these guards away or who punished them for
18 doing nice things for the detainees?
19 A. Only the administration, nobody else could have done it. I
20 mentioned already Milomir Maric, nicknamed Mara, one of the guards. He
21 came to the isolation cell after my attempted escape. He came there and
22 he threatened me. However, actually, he never did anything bad to
23 anyone. He was just acting on the spur of the moment, but he didn't
24 really mean it.
25 Very often people would address him with various requests, to go
1 to have lunch again or to get an extra slice of bread. And he asked
2 people not to address him, not to talk to him, because he had terrible
3 problems with the administration on account of that. In a way, he was a
4 communicative person, a tolerant person.
5 Q. On the other side, what happened to the guards who beat and abused
6 detainees? Were they ever punished?
7 A. I am not aware of anyone ever being punished or sent away on
8 account of that, no, absolutely not.
9 Q. On page 3606, you described how when you began working in the coal
10 mine in the spring of 1994, you had a knee injury, and you stated that a
11 lady doctor used to come from the health centre.
12 Did this doctor come from the health centre to the KP Dom during
13 your entire time of detention or only, let's say, beginning the spring of
15 A. Specifically, that lady doctor came at that time. However,
16 different doctors came to the KP Dom. First there was a doctor who
17 escaped from Foca in August 1992. I personally know him.
18 After that, there were periods when no doctor would come for a
19 while. Otherwise, doctors would come twice a week.
20 In the room there were 70 or 80 of us, and only five men could
21 report for medical examinations or whoever would be appointed by the
22 guards. Also, there were periods when no one would come. Also, there
23 were periods when other doctors worked.
24 I remember very well that once when I went to the metalwork shop,
25 when I went out to work, on my way out, in that hall a doctor was speaking
1 out loud, protesting, because he had been sort of reprimanded by the
2 administration of the KP Dom because he had given some kind of sick leave
3 to some of the prisoners in the KP Dom. He was hollering and he was
4 upset. He said, "Nobody is going to interfere in my work. I know who is
5 sick and I know who is not sick. If somebody is going to tell me what I'm
6 supposed to do, I'm not going to come here to work any more."
7 Of course I know this doctor's name, but I don't want to mention
8 it now and I don't think it's important, at any rate.
9 Q. What time period was that? Do you remember what year? During the
10 beginning or toward the end of your detention?
11 A. This was not at the beginning. Possibly this could have been the
12 winter/spring of 1993.
13 Q. And you described a doctor who you said escaped from Foca in
14 August 1992. Was that a Muslim doctor or Serb doctor?
15 A. It was a Serb doctor. When he saw what had been done, when he
16 viewed everything, he ran away. And he was a personal friend of mine,
17 too. He tried to do something. I don't know.
18 Q. When you say he tried to do something, do you mean he tried to do
19 something to help the detainees?
20 A. Yes, them and me. However, from the very moment he came to the
21 KP Dom, there were always one or two guards with him. So he was not on
22 his own for a single moment.
23 In the summer of 1993, when he left, when he came to work the last
24 time, he entered the metalwork shop, although that was not allowed. He
25 saw me there. We chatted for a few minutes, and he never reappeared. He
1 did not tell me then that he would be leaving. However, I found out seven
2 or ten days later. Since he was not coming in for work, I asked what had
3 happened to him. After that, I also went to the hospital once, and I knew
4 some people there as well, so I would get medication from them every now
5 and then. It's not that I needed medication that much, but there were
6 people who were very ill, and that's how I found out that he had escaped.
7 Q. So was the year 1992 or 1993 when that doctor escaped? At one
8 point you said 1992 and then it was 1993.
9 A. 1992. 1992, that's right. August, mid-August.
10 Q. When you said you would get medicine for people from the health
11 centre, was that officially allowed?
12 A. It was not from the health centre. It was from the hospital, from
13 the general hospital. No, absolutely this was not allowed, none of this.
14 I tried to hide these medicines as I was bringing in my tool box. Then I
15 would bring them into the room and give them to other men whenever I
17 Q. Mr. Zekovic, in your testimony, at one point you talked about --
18 A. There's something else I wanted to tell you in connection with
19 these medicines. On one occasion, a member of the medical staff at the
20 hospital gave me medicine for Dr. Aziz Torlak. This was in the summer of
21 1992 -- no, 1993, before Dr. Torlak was taken away from the KP Dom and
22 before I escaped.
23 He gave me -- I can't tell you for sure now. He gave me some of
24 his medicines and some of his things, and I brought this in. I hid it and
25 then I tried to smuggle it to him, like a shaving kit too and all that.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 However, after that he was taken in an unknown direction and nothing was
2 ever heard of him since then.
3 Q. Mr. Zekovic, you testified at one point how you and other people
4 in the metal shop made furnaces for the military and that you could have
5 made furnaces for the detainees to keep warm, but you were not allowed
7 I don't want to get into too much detail about the living
8 conditions because other people have testified about that, but I would
9 like to put this question to you: If someone were to suggest to you that
10 living conditions were bad for everybody because of the wartime
11 conditions, not just for the Muslim detainees, what would be your response
12 to that?
13 A. I understand that. This is absolutely incorrect. It did not
14 require any resources, any investment, or I don't know what, any kind of
15 additional expenditures or extra work or whatever. It was very easy to do
16 that. However, what you said just now could only be used as a pretext.
17 If furnaces could not be given and if there wasn't enough firewood
18 and coal, we could have got an extra blanket or extra clothes because
19 there was plenty of that in the warehouses. However, even when the winter
20 was at its coldest, you know that people had -- some people had three
21 blankets or extra things, and all of that was taken away from them. Many
22 windows were broken so it was terribly cold. It was more than terrible:
23 It was really awful.
24 Q. Mr. Zekovic, if somebody were to put to you that the KP Dom was
25 divided into two different parts that were administered separately, and
1 that Milorad Krnojelac was only in charge of the economic part and
2 therefore not responsible for anything except the economic part, what
3 would you respond to that?
4 A. That is absolutely incorrect.
5 Q. On what do you base that?
6 A. I base that on everything I know and all the time I spent there,
7 everything I saw and heard. It is true that there was a division where
8 Serbs were imprisoned for a week or several weeks, a month, longer than
9 that; however, they were strictly separated from us. They had their own
10 guards, their own supervisors. And collectively, the administration was
11 one for the entire KP Dom. Perhaps there was some kind of a person who
12 was in charge of the farm where the cows and the chickens were, a person
13 in charge of agriculture. However, as to where we were, there was only
14 one administration.
15 Q. And was that the administration that Milorad Krnojelac was in
16 charge of?
17 A. Yes, that's right.
18 Q. Mr. Zekovic, I would like to ask you about your brother, Enes
19 Zekovic. You testified on page 3438 that he was arrested in mid-April of
20 1992 and detained at the KP Dom for two to two and a half months. When
21 you were at the KP Dom, did you have contact with your brother? Did you
22 see him there?
23 A. Yes, I had contacts. It so happened that our rooms were nearby at
24 a corner. We could even talk because this was a three-metre distance.
25 During the night we would establish contact, we would talk.
1 Q. Do you know if your brother was ever beaten at the KP Dom?
2 A. I don't know about him ever being beaten, nor did he ever tell me
3 any such thing.
4 Q. Do you know any particular reason why he was not beaten?
5 A. I don't know. I really don't know.
6 Q. Even before you were taken to the KP Dom on the 20th of May, 1992,
7 do you know if there were efforts on behalf of your brother to have him
8 released from the KP Dom?
9 A. Well, there were big interventions for him to be released.
10 However, I know one thing for sure. One of the persons who was in charge
11 there - I don't know any names right now - was opposed to that because the
12 persons who had intervened on his behalf somehow were not on very good
13 terms with this person. And then that person said, "Ah, now that such and
14 such a person is intervening on his behalf, he is not going to be
15 released." However, there were interventions coming in, even from the
16 outside, even from Belgrade, and this ultimately resulted in his release.
17 Q. Do you know whether -- first of all, what is your brother -- or at
18 that time, what was your brother's profession? At one point you mentioned
19 that you had a brother who was a psychologist.
20 A. He worked in the municipality as a clerk. This was the public
21 attorney's office.
22 Q. Do you know whether Enes Zekovic's wife called Zdravko Begovic in
23 an attempt to get her husband's released?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Do you know what was relayed back to her?
1 A. On several occasions I tried to talk to them about all of this;
2 however, they are trying to keep their distance in that sense. They are
3 terribly afraid. They keep silent about this. Even after my first
4 testimony here, not only my brother but some other people warned me, in a
5 way, that everything I said here could be very dangerous for me. However,
6 I am not afraid. I think that these times are behind us, and that is my
7 claim for several reasons.
8 First of all, I will now certainly know how to defend myself and
9 all of my own. Secondly, all of this cannot go by unpunished now. Now
10 everybody knows that everybody will be held accountable for whatever
11 they've done. Nevertheless, I think that there still are fanatical people
12 who think and say that the war is not over yet.
13 Q. Mr. Zekovic, at one point in your prior testimony you described at
14 page 3535 how Serb soldiers had hung metal rings from hand-grenades on the
15 ears of one of the detainees who was taken as a kind of mine detector, and
16 you said that this was used as a form of humiliation.
17 Were there other acts of -- that appeared to you to be aimed at
18 humiliating the Muslim detainees? Can you give us some examples, if any?
19 A. Yes, that is correct. That is what I did say about that man.
20 That is Omer Bavcic from Gorazde. He was in isolation cell number four on
21 the upper side, so to speak. And on one occasion when our meals were
22 being given to us, we would go to the door and we would take our meals,
23 and I saw that his ear was badly swollen and infected, even. And Predo
24 Stefanovic, one of the guards, asked me, "What happened to you, big guy?"
25 And he said, "I was out there with your men and we were working with
1 mines, doing something with mines, and that's what happened."
2 And I know of another case. I was not there personally, but I
3 heard this from all the people who were up there at the farm. Jasarevic,
4 I cannot remember his first name, worked up there with a group of men near
5 a motel called Brioni. They were building a wire bridge. They were
6 actually oiling the wood in order to protect it. Zelja came there,
7 Zelenovic. He came there with some friends of his. At one moment he
8 called out Atif Jasarevic's name. And this man came up to him, and he
9 took a brush and this oil - this oil was all black because it was old oil
10 that had already been used in machines, lubricating oil - and then he put
11 it on his face and he said, "See? It is such people who are protecting
12 you." He was probably alluding to Arabs.
13 It was unbelievable how susceptible they all were to the media
14 propaganda. The unbelievable things that they were being told they
15 accepted without resorting to common sense at all.
16 Once, in the summer of 1992, Milenko Burilo, Busi, was a guard
17 within the metalwork shop where we were working, and at one moment he
18 started talking, and he said that everything that was being done to us was
19 nothing compared to what Alija Izetbegovic was doing in Sarajevo. He said
20 that he got lions from Libya and that he was throwing Serb children to the
21 lions in Sarajevo. And in order to make the story complete, he said that
22 this was also being done by Josip Pejakovic, a well-known actor who had
23 not joined the SDS and who did not join the army.
24 At that moment, I and that friend of mine who has the code name
25 210 here --
1 Q. We are getting a little bit off the subject. When the guards --
2 I'm sorry. When Zelja and his men put the grease on the face of the
3 detainee, did any of the KP Dom guards intervene?
4 A. No. No way.
5 Q. Mr. Zekovic, did you ever try to record your experiences by
6 writing them down after your release?
7 A. Yes, I did make some efforts. However, a friend of mine who is
8 engaged in publishing was talking me into it. But every time I tried, I
9 would give up the moment I started, and I sort of put it off. More
10 subconsciously than consciously I didn't want to do that because that
11 brought it all back and I had to go through it all over again and that
12 isn't easy at all.
13 Q. Perhaps this isn't easy either, but can you tell us how you are
14 still psychologically affected by your experience in the KP Dom?
15 A. It's not easy to describe or to explain. Very often I cannot
16 sleep at night. It takes me a long time to get to sleep. The dreams I
17 dream are terrible. I wake up in a sweat, in fear. I dream of all sorts
18 of escape. I am trying desperately to escape, to reach that light that's
19 waiting afar, and every time they catch up with me and start beating me
21 Q. Thank you. Those are all the Prosecution's questions.
22 JUDGE HUNT: Well, now, before we have the cross-examination,
23 there is that issue about the translation of this witness's evidence on
24 the last occasion. The case is going to be raised in cross-examination,
25 so we have got to sort it out now.
1 At the end of the last day, that was the 22nd of February, I asked
2 the Languages Section to check the translation of the passage which now
3 appears at page 3580, at lines 6 to 9, and I suggested it might be best if
4 a number of different interpreters could listen to the tape independently
5 to see whether this hotly disputed passage was correctly interpreted.
6 Now, I don't know whether that has been done.
7 Has the Prosecution heard anything of this?
8 MS. KUO: No, Your Honour. We didn't think that they would submit
9 it to us but, rather, directly to the Chamber.
10 JUDGE HUNT: We've heard nothing.
11 Have you heard anything, Mr. Bakrac?
12 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE HUNT: Well, I wonder if somebody could let us know, perhaps
14 after the short adjournment, whether that has been checked. It was the
15 passage in the LiveNote record, page 75, lines 21 to 24, and they have now
16 been reproduced, I haven't checked them against the original LiveNote at
17 3580, lines 6 to 9.
18 Is this your cross-examination, Mr. Vasic? Well, if you do intend
19 to ask any questions about that, I suggest you wait until we've had that
20 checked, to see whether it has been checked.
21 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Of course, Your Honour. Thank you
22 very much.
23 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you.
24 Cross-examined by Mr. Vasic:
25 Q. Good morning, Mr. Zekovic. I should like to introduce myself. I
1 am lawyer Miroslav Vasic, one of the defenders of the accused Milorad
3 My first question would relate to the statements you have given to
4 the investigators of the Prosecutor's office. Do you recall a statement
5 given on the 5th, 6th, and 7th of May, 1999?
6 We didn't hear your voice.
7 A. Yes. Yes.
8 Q. Did you also give a statement to the Ministry of the Interior, the
9 public security centre, the state security service in Sarajevo on the
10 14th of October, 1994?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Thank you. I would appreciate it very much if you could pause
13 before answering for the sake of the interpreters and so that the Chamber
14 and my colleagues from the Prosecution office know what my question was.
15 Do you know if the state security service in Sarajevo is also
16 known under the name of AID?
17 A. Yes, I know.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 A. I learnt that perhaps two years ago, but I don't see that it
21 Q. A question arose here, and it was also a matter of concern for the
22 Trial Chamber, what AID meant, and I'm trying to clarify that.
23 Did you talk to members of this agency, AID?
24 A. Yes, I did. As was mentioned then, it was the so-called DB, the
25 state security, the state security centre.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 Q. You mean this conversation, this interview in 1994?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. After that interview, did you have another contact with members of
4 this agency?
5 A. No, never.
6 Q. Thank you very much. In response to the question of my learned
7 friend, you have mentioned that you saw in the KP Dom Sain, Bozo, as a
8 commander of a unit which laid mines. Is that correct? Was that the
9 first time that you saw Bozo Sain since the beginning of the armed
11 A. Yes, the first time.
12 Q. Do you have any knowledge that Muslim units shelled Serbian
13 positions from the beginning of the armed conflict from a position known
14 as Sukovac?
15 A. Some of them were in Sukovac, and the Serbs were in Cerezluk and
16 up there in Zabrana.
17 Q. Did you state to the state security service that you had met Bozo
18 Sain before you were arrested and that he had shown you a big heap of
19 unexploded shells, and that he told you that those shells had been fired
20 from Sukovac but failed to explode because the safety catches, or whatever
21 it's called, were not removed from them?
22 A. Yes, I remember. That's correct.
23 Q. So your previous answer is not correct, the one when you said that
24 you first saw Bozo Sain in the KP Dom?
25 A. Yes, I had forgotten all about it. That happened a long time ago.
1 Q. Tell me, when you saw Bozo Sain in the KP Dom, was he wearing a
2 military uniform?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Was anybody else present during your brief interview?
5 A. No. We just exchanged a couple of words in passing when we were
6 on our way to breakfast. It was just a moment, ten or 15 seconds.
7 Q. Can you explain to me, please, why this event, this incident,
8 related to the conversation with Bozo Sain in the KP Dom has never been
9 mentioned by you in any interview, either with the security centre or with
10 the representatives of the Prosecutor's office?
11 A. Well, you cannot remember all events at any single moment. If I
12 went through this whole story again, I could possibly remember many more
13 things that I have experienced and that I had learned.
14 Q. I would agree, but in your statement to the security centre you
15 mentioned Bozo Sain's name. Didn't you have any associations once you
16 mentioned it with other incidents when you saw him?
17 A. In the statement which I gave to the CSB, I did not cover even 50
18 per cent of the -- of what I said here. It was not a detailed
19 conversation; it was a general outline. And it is absolutely certain that
20 I failed to mention a great number of things because nobody asked me
21 question details, detailed enough. I couldn't even remember everything at
22 the time, and they were not interested in such great detail.
23 Q. Don't you think that the security centre was more interested in
24 details about who ordered the mining of the KP Dom compound than your
25 meeting with Bozo Sain who showed you the shells of the grenades?
1 A. I don't see why they should be interested whether the KP Dom was
2 mined from the inside or that Maglic was mined on the outside border.
3 Q. Sir, do you know the name of Suljo Hasanbegovic?
4 A. Yes, I know that man.
5 Q. Could you please tell us to which party he belonged?
6 A. I don't know exactly, but I think he was affiliated to the SDA.
7 Q. Was he a representative of the SDA for Foca?
8 A. I think you could call him that. I think that's the way you can
9 put it, although I had no contact with him. I was -- I had an argument
10 with him. I had a quarrel with him.
11 Q. What kind of quarrel?
12 A. We had a job to do together involving an investment abroad. There
13 were problems and we ultimately had to deal with that in court. It was
14 some kind of joint venture, and we had a disagreement about that.
15 Q. Can you tell us what year that was?
16 A. You mean --
17 Q. That disagreement with Mr. Hasanbegovic and the lawsuit, the
19 A. That was -- well, I don't know exactly. 1990 or 1989, perhaps.
20 For the life of me, I can't remember.
21 Q. You mean before the armed conflict, before the military
23 A. Yes, yes.
24 Q. Sir, did you give a statement to the security centre saying that
25 Suljo Hasanbegovic had given you a rifle which you had hidden?
1 A. Yes, that's correct.
2 Q. When did Mr. Hasanbegovic give you that rifle?
3 A. He didn't give it directly to me. He sent a young man to bring
4 the rifle to me. It was a couple of months before the beginning of the
5 war. I disassembled the rifle, and I threw it away. I didn't even bury
6 it; I threw it away into the so-called caves on the bank of the Drina
7 River. But if I had been wiser, I wouldn't have done that.
8 Q. Why did he send the rifle to you?
9 A. I mean, I wouldn't have disassembled it and thrown it away if I
10 had known what was in the works.
11 What do you mean, that I don't have a right to defend myself? We
12 all believed that it wouldn't happen. I mean, the overwhelming majority
13 of us didn't believe that it would happen.
14 Q. Yes, sir, but why did he send you the rifle? That's the question
15 you didn't answer.
16 A. To defend myself. And as you are aware, we failed to do that in
18 Q. Did you know, sir, about anything that was found during the search
19 of Suljo Hasanbegovic's house, if anything?
20 A. No. There were rumours, there were stories circulating, but I was
21 really not interested. All I know is that he escaped. I know that his
22 father-in-law had some problems because of that.
23 Q. Thank you. Can you tell me, did you give a statement to the state
24 security centre saying that some automatic rifles and uniforms were found
25 in Suljo Hasanbegovic's house?
1 A. I don't know that I said that, in those words at least. I don't
2 know that.
3 Q. And did you go on to say that fortunately he destroyed the lists
4 according to which he distributed weapons?
5 A. I don't remember saying that.
6 Q. Would it help you if I were to show you a copy of that statement
7 where at the bottom of the page you signed your name, Ekrem Zekovic?
8 A. I'm not saying that I didn't. I don't remember all the details.
9 I know that he had something, but I never had any contact with him.
10 Q. Thank you, sir. Were you a member of the SDA?
11 A. In a way.
12 Q. Can you please clarify for us what it means, "in a way"?
13 A. Well, I was not a fervent supporter, but I did vote for them.
14 Q. Did you, as a member of the SDA, receive a rifle from
15 Mr. Hasanbegovic?
16 A. It didn't go along those lines. It didn't matter whether somebody
17 was a member of the SDA or not. Sometimes such things were sold for
18 money. Sometimes they were procured in a different way. What mattered is
19 who needed it. And I was naive. I didn't believe that anything would
21 Q. Did Mr. Hasanbegovic distribute weapons to Serbs as well?
22 A. He didn't, no, but I know of others who did. They made a business
23 out of it. They sold weapons. They traded weapons. Speculation and
24 contraband was a great opportunity for making profit. As we say where I
25 come from, it's a good time for bad people.
1 Q. From what time were you a member of the SDA, from what year?
2 A. I don't know if I can call myself a member at all in any terms.
3 Q. Did you have a membership card?
4 A. No. I never got one.
5 Q. Did you pay any membership fees?
6 A. No.
7 Q. Did you state to members of the state security service that your
8 investigation in the KP Dom took about half an hour because the
9 investigators did not know whether you were a member of the SDA or that
10 you possessed weapons?
11 A. That's true. I don't know if it took 30 minutes. Perhaps 20.
12 Q. So you were a member of the SDA.
13 A. What does it matter? Was I a criminal if I was a member of the
14 SDA? Did I do anything bad to anyone? Did I kill anyone?
15 Q. I'm not saying you did, sir.
16 A. But --
17 Q. I didn't say you killed anyone. I just asked whether you were a
18 member of the SDA and whether it was on account of that that you procured
20 A. I should have been wiser. I should have procured weapons to
21 defend myself of my own accord. If I had been a member of the SDA, that
22 doesn't mean that I was a criminal.
23 JUDGE HUNT: Just a moment. Mr. Zekovic, I realise that you have
24 an emotional reaction to the question, but you really must wait for a
25 significant time after the question before you start to answer it so that
1 the translators can catch up.
2 Mr. Vasic, do you think that we may have spent enough time on
3 this? He has said that he supported the SDA. He was more or less a
4 member of the SDA. If there is some little statement that he has made
5 that he was a member of the SDA, I don't think it is going to be anything
6 in conflict with what he's given in evidence about here, and if that's the
7 only matter that you want to deal with, let's move on to something more,
9 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. It was just a small
10 test of credibility. Thank you very much.
11 A. For instance, Suljo could have put me on the list to have a
12 certain number of people on the list. They used to do that. They put
13 people on the list who were not fit to serve in the army, for no reason,
14 or somebody could simply boast of having a lot of activists on their list,
15 and it's possible that Suljo, for a reason like that, added me to his
16 list, but I never had coffee with him even, let alone something more
18 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Zekovic, you may rest assured that we are not
19 very concerned about whether you were or you were not a member of the
20 SDA. The issue has been dealt with.
21 Let's get on with something that is relevant in the case.
22 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Mr. Zekovic, are you aware that during -- while the war was on,
24 for a while the Green Beret forces held the KP Dom in Foca?
25 A. Yes, I know about that.
1 Q. Did -- as a result of the combat activities that were going on at
2 that time, was the KP Dom damaged?
3 A. No. I couldn't say that. I don't think that anything was damaged
4 or looted. So you are calling them Green Berets. That is fine if you're
5 calling them that way, but when they came in ...
6 Q. You told us today that the windows, the glass in the windows in
7 the KP Dom were broken. How did that come about?
8 A. Well, I don't know why they were broken. Some windows could not
9 be closed tightly.
10 Q. One thing is -- are the windows that could not close tightly and
11 quite a different matter are the broken windows.
12 A. Well, I don't know what you are looking for. I don't know whether
13 there was any combat going on at that time because I was not in town at
14 the time. The KP Dom was operational when it was taken over. Now,
15 whether there was a glass, a window that was broken, I don't know.
16 Q. Thank you, sir. Now you've just told us that you were not in that
17 part of the town so that you don't know about this, and this is an answer
18 that I would agree with. But prior to that, you told us that the KP Dom
19 was not damaged, was not destroyed. How could you know that if you were
20 not present in that part of the town?
21 A. When I was overhearing once -- when I was going to work, I was
22 listening to a conversation in a cafe, and I heard that there were three
23 or four break-ins. I heard a conversation when Mitar Rasevic said this,
24 and the others responded, "Well, it was Muslims that looted and took
25 everything away." And Mitar Rasevic responded, "No, that is not true.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 When we came in and took over the KP Dom, every lock was operational.
2 Some weapons were missing, some Italian rifles. However, that was later
3 found in some kind of a ditch."
4 Q. Are you aware, sir, that a former warden of the KP Dom, once the
5 war broke out, ordered the safety valves to be taken off the weapons and
6 thrown away?
7 A. I don't know about that. People who used to work there would know
8 about that.
9 Q. Mr. Rasevic, in the conversation that you just described to us,
10 did not mention that, did he?
11 A. No, he didn't. There was no mention of rifles or anything like
13 Q. Thank you, sir. Are you aware whether the SDA party had a Crisis
14 Staff in Foca and who was the chairman of that Crisis Staff?
15 A. I truly don't know who was the chairman of that Crisis Staff. I
16 don't know.
17 Q. Thank you. Did you, sir, take the soldiers to the apartment of
18 Mehmedspahic, Nijaz?
19 A. They were members of a formation called White Eagles or something
20 along those lines.
21 Q. Could you tell us what Zelovic, Dragan told the members of that
22 formation, the White Guard?
23 A. He told them not to loot, that this was the agreement they had
24 reached. He simply said, "Don't touch anything. They is what we have
25 agreed on," and that was the end of it.
1 Q. In your statement in front of the Trial Chamber you mentioned a
2 Serbian guardsman who came to your house frequently and what he said on
3 the occasion when he visited your house. Why didn't you mention this
4 member of the guard formation in any of your previous statements?
5 A. As I've told you previously, if we were to carry this conversation
6 for long enough, I would remember a number of things. And this member of
7 the guard formation is hopefully alive and well in Serbia. And all of
8 those who committed evil things will have to be held accountable before a
9 court or before God. And if I am able, I will repay in kind to this man.
10 My wife -- he would come every day, and he threatened everybody
11 that -- he threatened everybody not -- not to touch any of the Serb people
12 who were living there; otherwise, he would kill them all. And he said
13 once, "It is true that I am a Serb. It is true that I am a Chetnik, but
14 I'm not the same as those -- as the others. I'm from Sumadija, and we're
15 simply interested in having a good time and singing."
16 And then my wife and the others who were there, they asked him,
17 "Well, why did you come here?" and he replied, "Well, we came here
18 because we were told that there was a massacre going on here, that 500
19 Serbs had been killed, and this is why we came here. And when we came, we
20 realised that it is not so."
21 Later on this Serb, this man, took my wife in his car to see her
22 parents in a different village. And after that, one of their members was
23 killed in the school centre, and after that they went back to Serbia. And
24 before he went back, he came to say good-bye to my wife and to my family,
25 and I can provide further evidence to this. And before he left, he said,
1 "May God help you because these other Serbs here are just very evil."
2 And as we know, there was no massacre of Serbs in Foca. We know
3 very well where massacres took place and who was massacred. While Muslims
4 held the KP Dom, nobody was killed there. There were some people who were
5 locked up there, that's what I heard, but I don't know of anyone who was
6 killed there.
7 Q. You mentioned Visegrad, Gorazde, Foca. Could the same be applied
8 to Zenica, Sarajevo, Celebici? Do you have knowledge about these places
9 as well?
10 A. Yes. This is a public -- this is a matter of public knowledge.
11 This has been printed in the media and everywhere, and now all that needs
12 to be done is to shed light on this.
13 But there are -- there is information to this effect. On one day
14 in December of 1992, Mitar Rasevic told me as I was telling him, "Well,
15 why is this going on? I never did anything bad to anyone." And he
16 replied to me, "Yes, yes, I know that. But none of this would be taking
17 place if it wasn't for the operation which took place on the 9th of May
18 when the JNA was retreating from its barracks and a number of people were
19 killed on that occasion in Skenderija in Sarajevo."
20 And that took place sometime in May, but however, the entire
21 eastern part of Bosnia was set on fire prior to that and a great number of
22 people were killed as well. However, he told me that nothing would have
23 come about if it weren't for that.
24 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Vasic, that answer, which was a very long one,
25 was really provoked by what seems to be an inescapable tactic which has
1 been raised in so many of these cases. We are not concerned here with
2 what happened, for example, in Celebici. I mean, we know what happened in
3 Celebici, and we know that Serbs were badly treated there, but we are not
4 concerned with what happened to the Serbs in this case. We are concerned
5 with whether or not there was an attack upon the civilian population of
6 the Muslims. And the fact that there was no doubt an attack upon the
7 civilian population of the Serbs elsewhere in the country has nothing to
8 do with it.
9 Now, any question that you ask, and it is a question which keeps
10 on coming up even in this case, is going to provoke answers like that.
11 And it seems to me that we are wasting so much time. This Tribunal has
12 had to try cases where Serbs were the victims, so we know that they were
13 victims during the course of this armed conflict. But we're not concerned
14 with it in this case because the fact that there was an attack upon the
15 Serb population somewhere else does not mean, or even within Foca, does
16 not mean that there was not also an attack upon the civilian population of
17 the Muslims.
18 So let's get on with the real issues in this case. We are not
19 concerned with who started the war, why it was started, or who was at
20 fault in relation to the war. We are only concerned with the issues in
21 this case.
22 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Naturally, Your Honours. Thank you.
23 Q. Sir, did you in your statement given to the security centre, did
24 you state there that those who failed to respond to mobilisation in Foca
25 faced confiscation of all of their real property and moveable property,
1 also faced being proclaimed traitors and deported from that region?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Thank you. Did you in your statement given to the security
4 service centre say that Todovic, Savo was in charge of the treatment of
5 imprisoned Muslims?
6 A. Yes. I repeated that on many occasions.
7 Q. Thank you. You said that Boro Ivanovic was on behalf of military
8 command in charge of the treatment of Muslims in the KP Dom. Did he tell
9 you this personally?
10 A. No. Boro was there very frequently, and I was able to see that
11 after my escape as well. He and Savo Todovic went together to Montenegro
12 to wait for me there, and then they interrogated me together.
13 Q. Did you hear personally ever that Boro Ivanovic issued orders to
14 Milorad Krnojelac?
15 A. No, I was not able to hear that.
16 Q. Can we then believe that your statement to this effect is your own
18 A. Well, it was a known fact based on the conversations with other
19 people, with guards. We knew who held what positions and who was what.
20 Q. Can you tell us, if that is indeed so, why then Milorad Krnojelac
21 did not go with Boro Ivanovic to ambush you? Why did he take Savo Todovic
22 with him?
23 A. I don't know. I don't see what would be the point of that.
24 Q. Can you reply to my question?
25 A. Well, why didn't Milorad Krnojelac go to ambush me? Because he
1 was the warden. He probably had more important things to do. How would I
2 know why he didn't go?
3 Q. Can you tell us who told you that Milorad Krnojelac was
4 subordinated to Boro Ivanovic?
5 A. Based on their relationship and based on what I heard when talking
6 to various guards, we were able to find out who held what positions.
7 Also, based on our contacts with various Serbs in town, we could find this
9 Boro didn't come to me to say that he was the boss of Krnojelac
10 and Todovic. That certainly didn't happen that way, and I wasn't in a
11 position to go and verify this. However, those were the ones who knew
12 everything and who were in the position to do either positive or negative
14 I recently -- I also talked to a man who a few days ago had talked
15 to Boro Ivanovic and who apparently claims that he knows nothing and had
16 not done anything, and the people then told me, "Well, if you are not
17 guilty, why do you go to all this trouble to defend yourself? And if you
18 are indeed guilty, then you will go to a place where you deserve to go."
19 Boro Ivanovic says that everything that took place there is
20 something that the KP Dom administration should be aware of. And now the
21 municipality is building him a house, I guess for all the good things that
22 he had done in the war.
23 Q. Based on your response, you concluded, based on what you heard,
24 that Milorad Krnojelac was subordinated to Boro Ivanovic. Is that
1 A. Yes, it's correct.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 A. Boro Ivanovic was in higher command bodies than are wardens.
4 Q. Thank you, sir. Did you state to the OTP investigators that the
5 widespread arrests of Muslims started between the 20th and the 25th of May
6 of 1992?
7 A. Yes, correct. As of May 15th, people were released from the --
8 certain people were released from the KP Dom and also the visits were
9 allowed. After that, it was very rare that they allowed visits. Only few
10 people managed to get that approved.
11 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us whether during your stay at the
12 KP Dom -- can you tell us, during your stay there in which rooms you lived
13 and at which time?
14 A. Well, let me see if I can do that. I first stayed in Room 18, and
15 then a room was established for those who worked together, Room 22 and
16 Room 16. Then later on in the fall when there were fewer of us, we were
17 transferred to the old wing of the house, in Room 13. I cannot remember
18 exactly now. I don't see how this is relevant. I lived in many rooms
20 Q. It is important because of the events and the individuals you are
22 When you say "the fall," do you mean the fall of 1992?
23 A. You mean Room 13. Yes, that was the fall of 1993, the summer of
25 Q. Thank you. Did you state to the state security centre that a
1 number of prisoners who were believed to be SDA activists and when
2 possessed arms were taken to the isolation cells and beaten? When asked
3 by my learned friend, you said that people were taken out randomly.
4 Just a minute.
5 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, but the answer to the
6 previous question was not recorded in the transcript. The witness replied
7 "yes," and this is not reflected in the transcript.
8 JUDGE HUNT: I must say I didn't hear him say anything. You heard
9 him say "yes"?
10 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I heard, but let me ask the question
11 again and give the witness a chance to reply once again. Thank you, Your
13 Q. Did you state to the state security centre employees that certain
14 prisoners who were believed to be SDA activists and who were believed to
15 possess weapons were taken to the isolation cells and beaten?
16 A. Yes, correct. However, that was not the only criteria. All of us
17 were considered suspects, even those who before the war went to Serbia,
18 Montenegro. They were considered suspects as well, and those who
19 surrendered to the JNA as well. So all of us were suspected of
21 Q. So there was a criteria based on this suspicion to establish who
22 played what role?
23 Can you please reply more loudly because your answer was not
25 So was there a criteria to establish who played which role?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. Well, how would I know what were their criteria? No Muslim or
2 Croat was considered to be clear or good. We were all either imprisoned
3 or deported from Foca.
4 A friend of mine whose wife is a Serb, she left prior to the war
5 to Serbia, and he remained there because he had his job there. They asked
6 him ten times, "Well, why did you remain here?" He was not a member of
7 the SDA. All he knew was that he wanted to drink and to work. And they
8 asked him a number of times why his wife had left to Serbia, to go to her
9 family. Therefore, he was considered guilty because his wife left for
10 Serbia and he remained there, and they would also suspect him of various
11 things if he had not left himself.
12 Q. You mentioned in your testimony here before this Trial Chamber
13 that Mr. Balic was beaten in the KP Dom.
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Did you say to the members of the state security service that he
16 was beaten because he was a member of the SDA and had weapons?
17 A. Well, we're going back to the same issue. He was beaten mostly
18 because his brother, Husein Balic, was the director or he was the
19 principal of the military school in Vranica and he gave certain
20 statements, and I guess the members of that school were taken hostage.
21 After his brother was released, he gave a certain statement and then his
22 brother, Dzemo, was prosecuted.
23 However, they attributed various things to us. They would, for
24 example, ask us whether we had Croatian money, whether we had Croatian
25 flags. And what use would we have for Croatian money in Foca? They
1 searched my apartment to see if I had any Croatian currency. So they
2 simply used anything as a pretext. They had no specific proof.
3 Q. Now, did you in fact state what I had told you, that he was beaten
4 because he was a member of the SDA?
5 A. Well, they beat him because they wanted to see whether he had
6 lists and whether he was the organiser of this group. However, if he
7 indeed had been, then they would have been able to prove that. However,
8 they weren't able to prove anything. If we were truly organised, then
9 there wouldn't be as many of us in the KP Dom and other camps.
10 One guy was beaten because they wanted him to admit that he was a
11 member of the SDA. I know this for a fact because I heard this with my
12 own ears, and this young man was quite desperate, and he was saying,
13 "Well, I'm not a member. I'm not a member. Even my cow is not a member
14 of the SDA; however, you killed my cow." Not everybody was a member of
15 the SDA. And why was that relevant? We're going back to the same issue.
16 Why is it important whether somebody was a member of the SDA or not?
17 Q. You just mentioned an incident with this young guy. When did this
18 take place?
19 A. In the summer of 1992.
20 Q. Well, how do you know about this incident?
21 A. I heard it. I heard them beat him and ask that he give a
22 confession of being a SDA member.
23 Q. Now, which month was it in the summer of 1992?
24 A. I don't know. I had already started working. It could have been
25 August or September or something like that.
1 Q. Where were you when you heard that?
2 A. I was in front of the administrative building.
3 Q. Was it outside of the compound or in front of the metal gate?
4 A. It was outside of the compound. I was repairing a vehicle right
5 by the building.
6 Q. And where was this young man at the time?
7 A. Inside one of the rooms.
8 Q. Can you tell us in which room, which floor?
9 A. It was on the ground floor. I'm not sure exactly which room it
10 was, but it was on the ground floor. Perhaps it was the, what we call the
11 passing room or the -- one of the isolation cells, the transit room.
12 Q. So you mean this transit isolation cell that you mentioned
14 A. I believe that's what it was.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it is 11.00, so this is
17 perhaps a convenient moment to stop the cross-examination.
18 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you. We'll reconvene at 11.30.
19 --- Recess taken at 11.00 a.m.
20 --- On resuming at 11.35 a.m.
21 JUDGE HUNT: I'm sorry for the delay. It was my fault.
22 Mr. Vasic.
23 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
24 Q. Sir, just before the break, we were talking about a young man.
25 You said that you had heard that he had been beaten because he was a
1 member of the SDA. Why did you not mention this to the investigator of
2 the OTP when you gave your statement?
3 A. I said to you a few minutes ago, there are lots of things that I
4 have not said. I could not recall everything.
5 Q. Did the OTP investigator ask you about details, about events that
6 you were aware of, of which you had immediate knowledge?
7 A. Yes. Yes, he did. But as I said, there were lots of things that
8 happened in those two and a half years in the camp that I heard, that I
9 saw, that I found out.
10 Q. Can you tell us when you found out about this detail?
11 A. When did I find out about this detail? I remembered just now, a
12 few minutes ago when we were talking about whether I was a member of the
13 SDA or whether somebody else was a member of the SDA, and I was saying
14 that people were being accused or, rather, suspected of being something,
15 only on the basis of that, and that's when I remembered.
16 Q. In your statement, you said that Mr. Balic was beaten up and that
17 you had seen him after that.
18 A. Correct.
19 Q. Why did you not mention this detail to the investigator of the OTP
20 or to the state security centre? Did you remember this just before you
21 testified about it?
22 A. I think that I said that to the Prosecutor. I think that that had
23 been mentioned. After Dzemo Balic got out of the isolation cell, he came
24 to my room. When I was detained on the 20th of May, he was in the
25 isolation cell. After a long time, he got out. The man was at his wits
1 end. He could not talk to anyone for days.
2 Q. In the statement you gave to the investigator of the OTP, I did
3 not come across this piece of information that you had said that, that
5 A. I don't know.
6 Q. Thank you. Also, you did not say what you stated before the
7 Honourable Trial Chamber, that you saw Mr. Sahinovic, Mr. Rizvanovic in
8 the transit isolation cell, beaten up, and that you talked to them.
9 A. Who did I not say that to? I'm sorry.
10 Q. You did not say that to the investigator of the OTP. Those
11 persons are not mentioned in your statement.
12 A. Do you mean the statement I gave to the OTP two years ago?
13 Q. Two years ago.
14 A. That is possible, because there are many things that I have not
15 mentioned yet at all that we simply did not bring up.
16 Q. Can you say whether the detainees could move about the compound of
17 the KP Dom without being escorted by guards?
18 A. It depends. It depends.
19 Q. Depends on what?
20 A. On the work concerned, on the circumstances involved. There were
21 some people who worked within the compound. They were cutting firewood or
22 cleaning the compound, and usually they had guards accompanying them. We
23 from the metalwork shop, when we came to do something within the compound
24 of the camp itself, we did not have any special guards assigned to us, but
25 there were guards that were within the compound. So we did not have a
1 guard from the outside coming in to escort us while we were in the
3 Q. Were you then supervised by the guards who were in the compound of
4 the KP Dom?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Can you tell me whether you know that on the first floor in the
7 administration building of the KP Dom there was a restaurant where coffee
8 was prepared?
9 A. It was not on the first floor. It was on the ground floor.
10 Q. In addition to the one on the ground floor, was there that kind of
11 restaurant on the first floor as well? Are you aware of that?
12 A. No, I'm not aware of that.
13 Q. In response to my learned friend's question, you spoke of a
14 conversation that you heard from the room on the ground floor that you
15 mentioned just now. On that occasion, was the window open in that room?
16 A. No.
17 Q. How much time did you spend in front of the metal gate on that
19 A. Sometimes we would wait for ten minutes and sometimes for an
20 entire hour.
21 Q. While you were waiting for ten minutes or for an entire hour, were
22 you supervised by a guard?
23 A. No.
24 Q. Not even one from the compound of the KP Dom?
25 A. These guards from the compound of the KP Dom were moving about the
1 compound of the KP Dom. They were at every entrance into the building, in
2 front of the kitchen. Also above the building of the KP Dom there were
3 several of them. But whether there was someone who was specifically
4 standing by us, next to us by the gate as we were standing there waiting
5 to go out to work, no.
6 Q. You were allowed to get that close to the administration
7 building? You were allowed to stand there and wait?
8 A. Well, we weren't allowed, but we weren't forbidden, either.
9 Q. Can you tell us why you would sometimes wait for an hour or for
10 ten minutes? What were you waiting for?
11 A. We had to come before 7.00, and we would wait for someone to come,
12 one of the guards to come, for the head of the metalwork shop to come and
13 to call us out and to take us out to work.
14 Q. Did the guards work in three shifts? Was a guard always present
15 at the metal gate on the inside?
16 A. On the inside? There was not a guard on the inside. There was a
17 guard in the reception office within the building.
18 Q. So which guard did you wait for to take you to the metal shop?
19 A. The one who would be assigned that way to guard us, to guard us
20 within the metal shop.
21 Q. As for the details of the conversation that you heard through the
22 window, did you talk to the investigator of the OTP about this and also to
23 the people at the security centre in Sarajevo?
24 A. Of course in Sarajevo I did not talk about such minor matters.
25 They didn't ask me about that, either. They asked me approximately how
1 many people were there and whether people were taken out and when they
2 were taken out for these exchanges, and that all trace was lost of them.
3 But whether I told them about these details, what I heard there and what I
4 heard at the metalwork shop or by the wall, no, no.
5 Q. Did you remember this detail just before you testified?
6 A. No, I did not remember it.
7 Q. Did you state the following to the investigator of the OTP?
8 A. That I listened to these conversations, that I heard them; is that
9 what you're referring to?
10 Q. Yes.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. I cannot find that in your statement dated 1999, the one I got
13 from the OTP. Do you think that it was simply not recorded, as
15 A. Possibly it was not recorded at all. Possibly it was not recorded
16 at all because I spoke about some things at great length and I went into
17 great detail, and then they said that some things were not all that
18 significant for the case involved.
19 Q. Thank you. You said that you listened to the conversation that
20 was taking place in the office by the metalwork shop. Were you alone
22 A. You mean when I was eavesdropping in front of this office?
23 Q. Yes.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Can you tell us when this happened, in which month, which year?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. This was the summer of 1992, the autumn. Sometimes during the
2 winter as well, because at first we did not have the key to this
3 workshop. It is only later that a man was asked to work there as a
4 locksmith, so then we had access to the room. At first we did not have
5 access to that room at all, then Relja would give us the key from time to
6 time. Sometimes this was once or twice a week and sometimes it was only
7 once in 15 days.
8 Q. While you testified in response to my learned friend's questions,
9 you said that beatings could be heard every day.
10 A. In the summer of 1992, all the way up to - I don't know -
11 September, something like that, almost every day. For example, there
12 would be four or five days in succession and then there wouldn't be any in
13 a few days. So these intervals were irregular, but at any rate, it was
14 very frequent.
15 Q. Why did you not mention this in the statements you made so far to
16 the investigator of the OTP and also to the security station?
17 A. We are going back to that again. The statement I made to the
18 security station was very brief, and I did not include many things there.
19 They did not ask me about a great many things and perhaps not everything
20 was of interest to them.
21 Q. It is a ten-page statement, the one that you gave to the security
22 station, and the statement you gave to the investigator of the OTP is ten
23 and a half pages. Do you think that in these ten pages not everything you
24 said was included or did you simply not mention that then?
25 A. It is possible that not everything was included. It is also
1 possible I did not mention some things to them. I repeat once again,
2 there are many things that perhaps I did not mention at all to anyone yet,
3 that we have not brought up yet. There are some that I mentioned for the
4 first time today.
5 Q. Is one of these things your statement relating today to what you
6 know about the beating of the man from Kamena because of the water and
7 what he heard? That is what you stated before the Honourable Trial
8 Chamber in response to my learned friend's question.
9 A. I did not understand your question.
10 Q. Before you did not mention this at all.
11 A. I don't know. This is the umpteenth time that I am saying this.
12 I cannot remember all the details. I do not know exactly which are the
13 details I did mention and which are the details I did not mention, but
14 whatever I have said, I stand by it. I said some things in Sarajevo. I
15 did not say a great many thing in Sarajevo. Some things I said to the
16 investigators and there are other things that we did not pay any attention
17 to. It was impossible for me to remember everything at a given point in
19 Q. Did the investigator of the OTP ask you about beatings of which
20 you had immediate knowledge?
21 A. Well, yes, he did, but there were so many beatings that I could
22 not remember everything. It's not that it was only a few incidents.
23 Q. Well, in your statement to the investigator of the OTP, you did
24 not mention that many beatings. It's not that you could not have
25 remembered something that you personally heard and saw and also concerning
1 a person that was together with you in Room 18, as you've said.
2 A. I did not understand what you've been saying. What is this? Who
3 is this person?
4 Q. You said that this young man from Kamena was beaten because of
5 water and that he was in Room 18 with you.
6 A. Yes, in Room 18.
7 Q. You're trying to say that when you gave a statement to the
8 investigator of the OTP, you did not remember this incident.
9 A. There are many things that I did not remember. I can remember
10 them now when we are taking things in a certain order and --
11 Q. Thank you. In response to my learned friend's question, you said
12 that beatings took place behind the metal door in the anteroom and in
13 other rooms that you could not locate; is that correct?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. After that, you said that you saw blood on the walls and also the
16 cash register behind the metal door.
17 A. Yes. But it wasn't a cash register. It was a metal cupboard.
18 Q. Oh, a metal cupboard. Did you remember this detail just now, just
19 before you testified?
20 A. I always knew that. I passed through that metal gate hundreds of
22 Q. Why did you not say that to the investigator of the OTP then? Did
23 you think that this was an insignificant detail?
24 JUDGE HUNT: Both of you really must wait. Mr. Vasic, I know
25 you're doing your best and usually you're successful, but you are coming
1 in on top of his answers.
2 Mr. Zekovic, it's very hard to understand this, I suppose.
3 Everything that you are saying is being translated into English and into
4 French. Now, that works very well when the counsel cross-examining you is
5 speaking in a different language to yourself because there has got to be a
6 pause while you listen for the translation before you give the answer.
7 But because you can hear it coming in your language, you tend to come in
8 too soon. So please just wait so that the interpreters have got the
9 chance to catch up.
10 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Sir, this is the first time that you mentioned blood on the walls
12 and the metal wardrobe here in court. I'm just asking whether you
13 remembered all of that just before you testified?
14 A. I repeat once again: I remembered many details later when we get
15 into these matters, when we start discussing them. I answered many direct
16 questions before, and there are many things that I remembered and that I
17 talked about. I was always aware of this information. I know that these
18 walls were bloody, and I know that just before the Red Cross came to visit
19 they were painted. And I know the people who did that too.
20 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Vasic, you are entitled to take everything that
21 he has said here and point out to him that he has not referred to it in
22 any statement that he signed, or he does not appear to have referred to.
23 Indeed, you are bound to do so if you want to make a comment on it. But I
24 wonder if we've reached the situation in relation to this witness who has
25 told you on each occasion it's only when you settle down and you start to
1 go through something logically that a lot of detail comes back to you, you
2 don't have to accept that, but you are getting the same answer every time,
3 and I'm wondering whether we are usefully using our time taking him to
4 every one of these. I assume there are quite a few.
5 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I only asked about
6 details related to the beatings that the witness claimed he saw and heard
7 personally, also about the detail concerning blood on the walls. In the
8 opinion of the Defence, this cannot be an insignificant detail that the
9 witness would tend to forget. That is why it is important for the Defence
10 to find out why he did not mention this in his statement so far, that is
11 to say, such a prominent detail.
12 JUDGE HUNT: I agree with you entirely in relation to important
13 matters, so if you are restricting it to important matters, I won't
14 interfere again. But there is a certain practice on the part of counsel
15 from the former Yugoslavia, they seem to place an immense amount of weight
16 upon the fact that somebody has brought something up in court for the
17 first time and hasn't given it in a statement. It may be the different
18 legal cultures.
19 Having been involved in litigation for very many years, I'm afraid
20 I have come to the view that quite often witnesses quite genuinely
21 remember things when they are taken through something in a court
22 proceeding which they may not have remembered in such detail when they
23 were giving their statement. On the other hand, sometimes it's clear that
24 what they are saying in court is false because they have not given it
25 before in a statement. But I hope you are restricting your questions to
1 the very important matters that have been omitted, and that we're not
2 going to go through every minute detail that the witness has given us in
3 court which is not included in the statement.
4 And I hasten to add, you have used the -- both you and Mr. Bakrac
5 have been very good about this. Perhaps it's because we've been through a
6 trial where counsel were not so careful that we have become somewhat
7 sensitive to this procedure. But please, just keep it to the matters
8 which you think are of some importance, and don't worry about the matters
9 where you are doing it just solely to produce the fact that he has not
10 told us about it before.
11 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. You said just now, sir, that you knew the names of the persons who
13 had painted this room. Could you please be so kind as to give us these
15 A. Yes. Andjelic Fehim, he was a house painter, and Mujo, Mujo
16 Hodzic, yes.
17 Q. When was this room painted? Can you give us the year, the month?
18 A. This was the summer of 1993.
19 Q. Can you tell me the colour that was -- that this room was painted
21 A. No, I can't.
22 Q. Can you tell me whether you passed through this room after it had
23 been painted?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Thank you. Was this room painted before or after your escape?
1 A. Before my escape. Before the first visit of the Red Cross.
2 Q. Sir, in response to my learned friend's question you said that
3 Salko Mandzo said to you once that he was saved either by Savo Todovic or
4 by Milorad Krnojelac from beatings and mistreatment. We heard from some
5 witnesses here that they heard from Salko Mandzo that Mitar Rasevic had
6 saved him.
7 Are you sure that you heard what you stated here before this Trial
8 Chamber, or do you allow for the possibility of this having been Mitar
10 A. I don't know about that. He told me what he said, that the warden
11 and Savo walked into the room and said, "That's not that Mandzo." Whether
12 Mitar Rasevic was present or not and whether he came in, I don't know. He
13 didn't mention that to me, and I didn't register that.
14 Q. Thank you. You spoke about an incident related to Nurko Nisic.
15 You said then that in the KP Dom a person named Cosa was present and that
16 you think that a person named Zelja was also present. Are these military
18 A. Yes, that is correct. Cosa was commander of the military police,
19 and Zelja, whether he was a real member of the military police or whether
20 he just cooperated with them then I don't know for sure, but he was with
21 him very often.
22 Q. Can you tell us how come you know that Zelja was present on that
24 A. I did not claim specifically that he had been present, but that is
25 my assumption.
1 Q. So you did not see him on that occasion?
2 A. No.
3 Q. And you didn't hear him?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Thank you. How come you know that Cosa was present, then?
6 A. I know very well. He has a characteristic way of speaking. I
7 know his voice.
8 Q. So what did you hear on that occasion? You heard his voice?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. What did he say then?
11 A. When I remembered, what was characteristic was the question
12 addressed to Nurko, "Do you know what happened to my Bota?"
13 Q. In his voice -- was there something specific about his voice?
14 A. Let me tell you once again. I knew this man from before, from the
15 civilian days, and I knew the way he spoke. I knew his tone of voice. I
16 knew his voice as such.
17 Q. Thank you. Did you say to investigators of the OTP that you
18 recognised Cosa's voice because he stammered?
19 A. It wasn't stammering. It was just a sort of broken voice. It
20 couldn't really be called stammering.
21 Q. Did you say that because you knew his voice or because he had this
22 speech defect?
23 A. Because I knew his voice and because he has this defect.
24 Q. Can you tell us when this incident took place involving Cosa and
25 Nurko Nisic?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. I can't say the exact date. It was in the summer of 1992, July,
2 the beginning of July.
3 Q. And where did it take place?
4 A. In the administrative building of the KP Dom.
5 Q. Can you tell us, was it in the new or in the old building? Which
6 floor, the ground floor or the first floor?
7 A. It was in the new wing of the administrative building, on the
8 second floor.
9 Q. Thank you. Do you know characteristics of weapons well?
10 A. No.
11 Q. In response to my learned friend's question, you said that you
12 heard revolver shots. How do you know they were fired from a revolver?
13 A. I don't think it's necessary to be an expert on weapons to notice
14 the difference because with a revolver it was a burst of gunfire,
15 automatic fire.
16 Q. I would agree that you can distinguish between automatic and
17 non-automatic fire, but it could have also been an automatic rifle firing
18 in the usual non-automatic way.
19 A. It could have been. It didn't have to be a revolver. It didn't
20 have to be a rifle. But these people were killed. What with, I don't
21 know exactly, but I assume it was a revolver. It absolutely doesn't
22 matter. What matters is that those people were killed.
23 Q. Why do you assume it was a revolver?
24 A. Here we are again.
25 JUDGE HUNT: Does it matter? He has now conceded it could have
1 been a shotgun or, sorry, an automatic rifle. He has conceded it could
2 have been. So does it matter why he said he thought it was a revolver?
3 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if the witness made
4 conclusions without being certain about the type of weapon, then I'm not
5 sure about his other assumptions. I want to know why he made this
6 assumption without being certain.
7 JUDGE HUNT: If it were significant in some way that it was a
8 revolver rather than a gun that would be an interesting line to pursue,
9 but if it doesn't relate to something which is important, it doesn't
11 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I will not
12 pursue this line of questioning.
13 JUDGE HUNT: Before you go on, the Trial Chamber recognises that
14 this witness has made a number of assumptions, as has every witness in
15 this case. It is one of the problems, I suppose, as a common law Judge
16 that I find quite extraordinary about in the way in which the testimony is
17 given, that you don't find out, first of all, from the witness what the
18 basis of his evidence is. We recognise that, and we recognise that a
19 number of witnesses have made assumptions based upon hearsay.
20 This witness has very frankly conceded, for example, about whether
21 or not there had been damage out at the KP Dom. He relied upon what he
22 had been told about it when he gave his evidence, and that's perfectly
23 natural for a witness. A witness is not a lawyer. A witness doesn't
24 understand the difference between personal knowledge and hearsay. Some
25 lawyers don't understand it either, I hasten to add, but nevertheless, a
1 witness can't be expected to. And I really don't think it affects his
3 If you want to go to a matter of some importance in the case and
4 you found out he's made an assumption, the question you have asked, "What
5 was the basis of your assumption?" would be a proper one and an important
6 one, but I don't see that it's important here as to whether they were
7 revolvers or rifles, and if it is not important, let's get on to something
8 that is, please.
9 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
10 Q. In response to my learned friend's question, you said you noticed
11 that the evening when this incident involving Nurko Nisic and Cosa took
12 place, the light was on in the warden's office. How did you come to
13 notice that detail on that particular evening?
14 A. Because my room, number 18, overlooks that building. It was right
15 across that building.
16 Q. Can you tell us in which other windows was the light on?
17 A. I really couldn't tell you that because I couldn't write that
18 down. I didn't have anything to write it down with, where the light was
19 on, at what time, and for how long.
20 Q. Did you recall that before testifying now? Because there are no
21 details about the light being on or off in any of your statements.
22 A. I don't know.
23 Q. Thank you. Can you please tell us if you remember what the
24 weather was like that night?
25 A. What the weather was like. It was dark and the temperature was
1 21 degrees centigrade.
2 Q. There was nothing special about that night in terms of weather,
3 was there?
4 Will you please answer for the transcript? The shakes of the head
5 do not enter into the LiveNote.
6 A. I don't know the details of the weather. All I know, it was
7 summer and it was a summer evening.
8 Q. In response to my learned friend's questions, you said that the
9 military police had at their disposal a great number of vehicles; is that
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Was there among those vehicles one with the broken exhaust pipe?
13 Do you know anything about that?
14 A. I don't know whether I said it had a broken exhaust pipe, but it
15 had an idiosyncratic sound different from the Volkswagen. I know that I
16 said that the vehicle with the special exhaust pipe was a Zastava 101, and
17 it was in the vehicle pool of the military police.
18 Q. I know that, but I was asking you whether you knew that the
19 military police's vehicle pool had a vehicle with a broken exhaust pipe.
20 A. Whether there was or there wasn't I cannot claim with any degree
21 of certainty, but we knew that there was a vehicle with a very special
22 sounding exhaust pipe. I as an auto mechanic could tell.
23 Q. Thank you. In response to my learned friend's question, you said
24 that on the next day you saw a Zastava vehicle with traces of blood on it
25 which had been washed, which had been washed. And then in a statement you
1 said that you saw them, you saw the washed car because they wanted to
2 conceal traces of blood.
3 A. I don't know that I gave a statement like that to the state
4 security service because I wasn't in a position to see the guards doing
5 the washing. We were only taken out for 15 minutes to take our things and
6 the tools we needed for the work we were supposed to do within the
7 compound of the KP Dom, and then in the compound of the metalwork shop I
8 saw that car. Water was still dripping from it, and in the little puddles
9 beneath it you could see traces of blood.
10 Q. I will read out to you two sentences from the statement you gave
11 to the security -- to the state security service.
12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, that is page 5, end of
13 the last paragraph, the last two sentences.
14 Q. "Since it was night, we could not see the perpetrators of this
15 crime, nor did we see the car which took them away, but we knew its sound
16 because its exhaust pipe was damaged. In the morning, we saw the guards
17 washing the car in order to conceal the blood."
18 You stated this, or should I show you a copy of your statement so
19 you can see that you've signed that?
20 A. I believe that you have read it out correctly. Let me answer this
21 question. It is possible that it says so there, but I'm explaining again
22 that I was in -- not in a position to see those guards. I may have stated
23 my assumption that the guards had washed the car because none of us could
24 go out at that time. Myself and the gentleman under the code number 210,
25 we were the only ones who went out that day into the yard of the metalwork
1 shop. Maybe it says there that we saw them, but what I actually saw was
2 the car parked in the yard of the metalwork shop, water still dripping
3 from it, and you could see traces of blood.
4 Q. Did you go to the metalwork shop on that occasion escorted by a
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Who was the guard escorting you then?
8 A. I cannot remember exactly who was with us then, but in the room
9 when we were working, when we were installing these grids, there was with
10 us in the room not Savo Todovic but another one. I cannot remember his
11 name. He worked in the metalwork shop together with Relja.
12 Q. Did that guard, too, see the washed car?
13 A. I suppose he did.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 A. We didn't load anything into that car, and we didn't use anything.
16 We just carried things on a trolley up to the gate, and then we brought
17 them in.
18 Q. Do you know whether that car was used in the KP Dom for
19 transporting fish from the fishpond?
20 A. Yes, I know that, but I don't know that it was used for that
21 purpose at that time, in that period. It had been parked for days up
22 there, and moreover, it was parked within the metalwork shop compound on
23 premises used for machining of tools.
24 Q. Thank you. You said that during your work outside the compound of
25 the KP Dom, you saw on one occasion corpses in the Drina River. Can you
1 please tell us how far those bodies, those corpses, were from the bridge.
2 A. Not exactly to a metre, but I think it must have been 25 to 30
4 Q. In your opinion, were those bodies brought over from someplace
5 upstream on the Drina or on the Cehotina River?
6 A. I believe that those bodies had flown from upstream. In fact,
7 they are flown downstream from the bridge.
8 Q. Will you please tell us about something you said concerning the
9 circumstances of your escape. You said that the decision to escape was
10 also affected by the visit of the Red Cross. Did you say this here for
11 the first time, and what were the motives for your escape?
12 A. I spoke about the motivation for that escape on several instances,
13 and the final decision to try to escape I took after the visit of the Red
15 Q. Thank you. You mentioned that Mladen Matovic wanted to beat you
16 after you were caught. Can you please describe Mladen Matovic for us.
17 A. First of all, he didn't try to beat me, he hit me. He hit me with
18 a fist, and I fell onto the asphalt.
19 Mladen Matovic is a short man with dark hair and a moustache.
20 Before the war, he worked in the KP Dom and he was in charge, as far as I
21 know, of firefighting or something like that.
22 Q. You said he hit you with his fist on the face.
23 A. That is correct. He hit me on the face with a fist.
24 Q. And you -- and he fell you?
25 A. Yes. I fell on the asphalt.
1 Q. After you were brought to the KP Dom, you said that guard Burilo
2 hit you, that he beat you. Can you tell us how he beat you and where
3 exactly on your body?
4 A. He hit me with his hands on my head. He also kicked me. I tried
5 to dodge the blows, and I was stepping away from him. I was retreating.
6 He hit me with his hand several times in the chest. As I was retreating,
7 I fell on the steps, the three or four steps which led to the reception
8 office. When I fell on the ground, he started kicking me. After that, he
9 started jumping here. He started trampling me.
10 Q. Thank you. You said that after that, Milorad Krnojelac and Milic
11 appeared and that they took you to the transit solitary cell.
12 A. That is true. I heard Milic's wife - I don't know her name - I
13 heard her saying something like, "Don't let him do that. Stop him. He
14 will kill the man."
15 I wasn't conscious. I wasn't aware enough to take note of how
16 long he was beating me, but at one point, the warden and Milic ran up to
17 us. They lifted me up from the concrete pavement and took me to the
18 solitary cell.
19 Q. Did you state to the investigators of the Prosecutor's office
20 that, "This guard, who was much stronger than both Milic and the warden,
21 grabbed me and continued to beat me"?
22 A. That is true.
23 Q. Thank you. Bearing in mind the incident you have just described,
24 can you please tell me how, in your opinion, a guard would dare to attack
25 the warden, grab you from his arms, and continue to beat you?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 A. I didn't say he attacked the warden. That's not what I said. But
2 in this push and shove, as they were pushing me towards the solitary cell
3 and we entered the hallway leading to that room, he sort of pushed past
4 them and grabbed me and pushed me against the wall.
5 Q. You must admit that this warden was not much of an authority
6 figure if this guard doesn't hesitate to push past him and grab hold of a
8 A. I don't know what kind of authority he was. I just told you
9 about -- I just described things as they happened.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 A. I also know that Burilo was never punished for anything that he
13 Q. You said that you escaped on the 8th of July, 1993. This incident
14 when you were brought in, what date was it? Can you please tell us?
15 A. That was on the next day, the 9th of July.
16 Q. The 9th of July. Do you know whether on that day Milorad
17 Krnojelac was still warden in the KP Dom?
18 A. I couldn't tell you about that. All I know is that he visited me
19 in that solitary cell. And he was around the KP Dom even after that, and
20 I was told that by people who were still in the KP Dom after I was
21 released, and I was released a month later. Whether it was on the next
22 day or a month later, I really don't know.
23 Q. Thank you. Or maybe you don't know. Maybe he was replaced even
24 earlier. You don't know that?
25 A. No, I don't know.
1 Q. You mentioned that after you were caught, detainees were lined up
2 and that on that occasion, Savo Todovic made a speech. You also said that
3 Milorad Krnojelac was nodding his head on that occasion.
4 Why, when describing this incident involving Savo Todovic, did you
5 fail to mention to anyone that Milorad Krnojelac was nodding his head?
6 A. We are coming back to the same thing again, why didn't I mention
7 one detail or another. While Savo Todovic was speaking, the warden was
8 standing by with his hands behind his back. And it was a funny
9 relationship between the warden and Savo Todovic, because Savo Todovic was
10 a man with a chip on his shoulder. He had a sort of complex. He wanted
11 to put himself forward. The warden showed off as a warden by being
12 haughty, and he had his subordinates do his work for him.
13 Q. Is that your assumption? Is that your conclusion?
14 A. My conclusion.
15 Q. You told us you were not sure whether Milorad Krnojelac was the
16 warden at the time and now you're telling us that the warden was standing
17 next to Savo Todovic. So what is the truth here? Do you know for a fact
18 that he was a warden at the time?
19 A. Well, I wasn't able to go up and ask them what was the job
20 allocation in the KP Dom and around there. It is just that as this was
21 taking place, he was there. He was standing there. And after I was
22 released from the isolation cell, I learned that a new warden had been
23 appointed, Sekulovic.
24 Q. Thank you. When asked by my learned friend, you stated that while
25 talking in the isolation cell, Milorad Krnojelac was agitated and angry.
1 Was the reason for this anger and for this agitation the behaviour of
2 Burilo, the guard?
3 A. My escape was the reason for that and this entire problem that I
4 created for them. Now, because of that they could be considered
5 inefficient and so on.
6 Q. Is that your conclusion?
7 A. Yes, it is my conclusion.
8 Q. In your statement, you mentioned the transit isolation cell. Did
9 this transit isolation cell have a window?
10 A. Yes, correct. This isolation cell had a window the same size as
11 other windows on the ground floor which faced the street, the entrance
12 leading up to the KP Dom. It's just that this window in the isolation
13 cell was closed off. There was some kind of a plate attached to it so
14 that one could not see outside through that window. For example, I've
15 never mentioned this detail either previously.
16 Q. In response to my learned friend's question, you said that you
17 survived the KP Dom because somebody had been protecting you. Can you
18 tell us who it was?
19 A. No, I really don't know. I try to the best of my abilities to
20 find this out. I was not able to do so yet, but I'm hoping that I will
21 find out.
22 Q. Is this your assumption?
23 A. No. This is something that I heard while I was in the isolation
24 cell, and after I left the isolation cell, after about a month a guard
25 told me this.
1 Q. Can you tell us what guard it was?
2 A. Rambo Obrenovic, but he wouldn't tell me the name. He simply
3 said, "You will find out when the time comes," that I just needed to be
4 grateful to this man for staying alive, that I owed him that.
5 Q. You mentioned that you occasionally listened to the radio in the
6 car. Which radio stations were you able to hear in Foca at that time?
7 A. One could only listen to Radio Foca, Radio Srna, and Radio
9 Q. Radio Foca, Radio Srna, and Radio Sarajevo, were those Serb radio
11 A. Radio Sarajevo was, if I can call it that, a Bosniak radio
13 Q. Thank you. When asked by my learned friend, you stated that you
14 believed that the SDS removed Mr. Tesovic from the office of the warden of
15 the KP Dom. Do you know that Mr. Tesovic went with a group of prisoners
16 who were taken to Tuzla and that he was not present in Foca at the time?
17 A. Yes. It is true that a number of prisoners, Croats, Muslims, and
18 Albanians, were removed from the camp -- or I apologise, the prison in
19 Foca. Now, they were sent either to Montenegro or another place, I'm not
20 sure of that. Mitar Rasevic escorted them with another person that worked
21 in the KP Dom.
22 Now, majority of the Serb prisoners were released, and only
23 several of them remained there during almost the entire stay we were
24 there. Now, whether during this transport of these prisoners, whether
25 Mr. Rasevic was present and escorted them, I really couldn't -- I really
1 don't know about that.
2 Q. Was his absence perhaps the reason he was removed from the office,
3 from the office of the warden?
4 A. Based on what I know and based on my conversations with various
5 people and individual guards, I learned that he was removed from office
6 because he was not a hard-liner. He did not follow the SDS platform, he
7 did not approve and did not want to participate in everything they did.
8 There was a number of people who had the same stance as he did, and some
9 of them were locked up in the KP Dom, they were threatened, mistreated.
10 Those were the people that refused to serve in the army and so on.
11 JUDGE HUNT: Just a moment, Mr. Vasic.
12 Yes, Ms. Kuo, you should make yourself heard so that we can then
13 stop the witness.
14 MS. KUO: Yes, sir. It's quite all right. All I wanted --
15 JUDGE HUNT: The question was, in my view, quite inappropriate,
16 frankly. It was asking the witness to delve into the minds of people in
17 authority. But he's answered it.
18 MS. KUO: Yes, Your Honour. I just wanted to clarify whether this
19 person being discussed is Rasevic or Tesovic because the transcript says
21 JUDGE HUNT: Oh.
22 MS. KUO: And that is a big difference.
23 JUDGE HUNT: I had not noticed that. Which one are you dealing
24 with, Mr. Vasic?
25 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Mr. Tesovic.
1 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Zekovic, did you understand who it was that you
2 were being asked about as Mr. Tesovic?
3 A. Yes, yes, I understood. The counsel Vasic asked me whether I knew
4 that Radojica Tesovic took part in transferring these detainees, and I
5 replied that I did not know about that, but I did know that Rasevic, Mitar
6 Rasevic went with them. Now, whether Radojica Tesovic was with them as
7 well, I truly don't know.
8 JUDGE HUNT: Well, that probably has cleared it up.
9 MS. KUO: Except, Your Honour, except that the follow-up question
10 was about being removed from office, and again, we need to clarify whether
11 that was Tesovic or Rasevic because he was not a hard-liner.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Oh, I see your point. Yes.
13 Well, Mr. Vasic, I suggest you ask it again with the name in it so
14 we've got it clear on the record. Except that it's very difficult for
15 this witness to give his version of what was in the minds of those who did
16 remove him from office, whoever it was, but you proceed if you think that
17 you're going to get somewhere with it.
18 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
19 Q. My question was the following: Do you believe that Mr. Tesovic
20 was removed from the office because he was not present in KP Dom at the
22 A. No, he was not removed because of that absence. If he was absent,
23 that perhaps it lasted only a short period of time, and he was in Foca
24 otherwise. He was removed from office because he, based on the SDS
25 criteria, was not eligible for that office. And I now refer to
1 Mr. Tesovic, not Mr. Rasevic, just to make it clear.
2 Q. When asked by my learned colleague you replied that Mr. Tesovic
3 was appointed in the summer of 1993 to the post of the director of the
4 economic unit Drina. Was the SDS still in power at the time and was the
5 war still on?
6 A. For your information, let me tell you that the SDS is in power in
7 Foca even as we speak. And the war was still on at the time, and it is
8 quite unfortunate that many people in Foca still believe that the war is
9 on. Unfortunately, this is true.
10 Q. So Mr. Tesovic was appointed to the post of director of the
11 economic unit Drina by the SDS; is that correct?
12 A. Well, we are going back to those pointless questions, if I can
13 call them that way. How could I be in a position to know who appointed
14 whom? The SDS was the one that set the policies. No other organisation
15 did that. And just those individuals who were following the SDS hard-line
16 were considered appropriate. A neutral Serb is something that simply
17 could not exist because the Chetniks ideology says the following: "Who is
18 not with us is against us." This is what they kept repeating all the
19 time. They were saying, "This is a continuation of 1941, and do you
20 understand what this means?"
21 Q. Thank you. Do you believe that since Mr. Tesovic was appointed in
22 1993 to the post of the director of the economic unit, was an SDS
24 A. I already discussed this. As the time went along, it became clear
25 that the aims of creating Greater Serbia, an ethnically pure state, would
1 not come true; and as this realisation spread around, people were becoming
2 less and less enthusiastic, and many of them starting changing their views
3 and positions. A number of people were justifying their actions to us and
4 making confessions to us, and as the time went on, this became evident
5 from December 1992, that the attitudes started changing.
6 Now, some people never changed their attitudes, but a number of
7 people did. And if he was appointed to the post of director, that doesn't
8 mean that he was a passionate follower of the SDS. I really can't tell
9 you that.
10 Q. Can you tell us whether you know how many prisoners remained in
11 the KP Dom in the summer of 1993?
12 A. I don't know exactly. I don't know the number of detainees in the
13 summer of 1993. I don't know exactly, I truly don't. But on one occasion
14 I counted with another man who used to work in the KP Dom as a guard prior
15 to the war and stayed with me in Room 18. He and I counted about 860 to
16 870 people at the most, and that was in the summer of 1992.
17 Q. Now, was the summer -- what was the number of prisoners in the
18 summer of 1993 significantly lower?
19 A. Yes, it was significantly lower.
20 Q. You stated that they started -- the treatment with respect to you
21 improved after the summer of 1993. You also said that the guards made you
22 go to work even when you were sick, that they made threats to you. Can
23 you explain to us then how is it that you stated that they started
24 treating you better?
25 A. What we considered to be a very important issue was the food, and
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 the food significantly improved after the summer of 1992. No. I
2 apologise. The summer of 1993. It was late August, September, or
3 something like that. And the attitude of the guards changed
4 significantly. They were not yelling, and they were not as strict as they
5 used to be.
6 Now, there were occasional incidents both within the compound and
7 outside of it. Some guards became quite professional and fair in their
8 attitudes. Some of the guards were like that the entire time, but,
9 however, there were some guards that remained evil until the very end.
10 You asked me about the occasion when I was made to go to work. It
11 is true. I was physically exhausted and I was injured in the mine, and
12 this lady doctor gave me several sick leaves, and she also ordered that I
13 be given IV fluids. I remained in my room and then a guard came in with a
14 baton, started beating me and saying, "Well, this is the IV fluid you will
15 get from me. This is the sick leave you will get from me. Just go back
16 to work," and I did.
17 Q. Thank you. Now, you mentioned the group of people who went to dig
18 trenches and came back in 1993, and that these people told you that they
19 had heard from soldiers and local residents that some corpses had been
20 found near Previla. Was it something that you mentioned for the first
21 time before this Trial Chamber, this incident about this group that came
22 back in 1993 from digging trenches?
23 A. I believe that I mentioned it for the first time on that
24 occasion. One group went during the winter. It was either November or
25 December. They went to Previla and stayed there for some time, and they
1 came back around the New Year or after the New Year, and all of them came
3 Q. Thank you. Did you state to the state security service, when you
4 referred to the plum pickers' group, including Rasim Kajgana, did you
5 state then, referring to this group, that towards Gorazde there were many
6 corpses including dead prisoners and that among those corpses something
7 recognised Rasim Kajgana's body?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Were the other corpses of Serb soldiers on that front line?
10 A. I don't know that. I have no information to this effect. I know
11 that these people who were taken away never came back and none of them
12 were ever found alive. In that area up there, they found only one grave
13 with seven bodies in it and some were identified. And one or two bodies
14 were identified, and the others will be as well.
15 Q. In your statement, you said that you saw the prisoners being taken
16 to the gate to be exchanged and that they also beat them at the gate. You
17 saw on one occasion soldiers and a military truck. Now, was it the army
18 that took the prisoners for exchange?
19 A. Yes. They would come in with military vehicles, with a van or
20 something like that, and on one occasion, they also used a freight car or
21 a truck for transporting furniture, to transport people in it.
22 Q. You mentioned Serbs who refused to go to the front. What kind of
23 threats were they faced with, these Serbs who refused to go to the front
24 and were subsequently imprisoned in the KP Dom?
25 A. Very serious threats. I talked to some of them personally, and on
1 one occasion, I talked in the hospital to a wife of one of them, to a wife
2 of one of the prisoners who was there. She said that she was trying to
3 get some kind of a medical certificate for her husband, certifying that he
4 refused to go and commit all those crimes, and that she was trying,
5 through some relatives who were doctors, to obtain some kind of
6 certificate that would help release him. He was kept in prison.
7 Q. Thank you. Did you state to the state security service that based
8 on what you heard, about 1.350 soldiers were killed in Foca and its
9 surrounding areas?
10 A. Some of the information we received during our internment there
11 indicated that a graveyard which existed in the neighbourhood called
12 Cohodar Mahala, and also based on some of the stories we heard from Serbs,
13 this -- based on that, we arrived at this number. And there was also a
14 smaller number of Serb civilians that had been killed as well as opposed
15 to all of us who were all civilians.
16 Q. Thank you. But my question pertained only to soldiers.
17 A. I understand, but we were all civilians.
18 Q. Did you say to the investigators of the state security service --
19 did you talk to them about the imprisoned Muslims who were cooperating
20 with the Serb authorities?
21 A. Well, there were some people who, if I can say so, were snitches.
22 Q. Well, yes, you've said that they were. That's all right. But did
23 you mention this to the employees of the state security service in
25 A. I believe that we discussed that as well. I know that there were
1 a couple of Muslims who were members of the Serb army, if this is what you
2 have in mind.
3 Q. What I have in mind is a part of your statement in which you said
4 that one of the detainees tried to cooperate with the Serbs and that he
5 said that Muslims need to be killed. Did you indeed state this?
6 A. Yes, I did state this, but it is very important for me to explain
7 that. I will not mention the name of this particular individual.
8 This took place in the furniture factory, and he, in order to
9 become closer with those Serbian prisoners and get some cigarettes from
10 them, he would tell them stories about how he was a good man, he never
11 went to mosque, but he did go to a church, and in fact he was some kind of
12 a craftsman who repaired churches. In order to endear himself to those
13 Serbs - and there were several Montenegrins there as well - he would tell
14 them stories about how Alija was a bad person and needed to be killed and
15 so on. Upon hearing that, Djapic stood up and spit in his direction and
16 then said, "Well, if this is what you tell about your people, what kind of
17 things do you believe of us?" This is what he said.
18 Q. Now, did you -- why did you bring this up in your conversation
19 with the employees of the state security service? Did they ask you about
21 A. They did. They did ask me. They didn't know about that
22 particular incident, but they did ask me something to the effect, "How did
23 people behave in the camp? Were there people who were cowards, people who
24 were snitches?" and so on.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it is 1.00, and I
2 believe this is a good time to have a lunch break.
3 JUDGE HUNT: Before the break, though, I have a confession to
4 make, I hope within the terms of the Rule. I made a mistake at the end of
5 the last sittings about asking the Language Services to check the
6 transcript. It was a bad time. If you remember, there were a number of
7 other events going on, and it slipped my mind. So I am having a request
8 made for that transcript to be checked, but it's unlikely that it will be
9 checked within the next few minutes or anything.
10 I don't know how long you will be with this witness, but we will
11 endeavour to have it checked before you finish your cross-examination.
12 I'm sorry about that.
13 We'll resume now at 2.30.
14 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.33 p.m.
2 JUDGE HUNT: I'm very grateful that the interpretation people have
3 done as we asked them, and they have produced the transcript of what was
4 in issue having heard it again.
5 The original interpretation was, "We sent information to the
6 command," and the correction is, "We sent information from the command";
7 but I'm afraid, Mr. Bakrac, there was no reference to the word "military"
8 there. As I said to you the other day, sometimes you hear things you want
9 to hear. It's not always correct.
10 And, of course, that correction from "to" to "from" is consistent
11 with what the witness himself said when asked again what he said. He said
12 he used the word "from" and that he did not know whether it was military.
13 Before we go on, may I ask about the photographs.
14 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, yes. First of all, I
15 feel duty-bound to apologise. Perhaps you put it well the last time: I
16 reacted because I heard something, but actually it turned out that I had
17 thought I had heard something. But indeed, there was no other reason for
18 that. I was really convinced, because "command" is a word which is very
19 close to the military in our language, and that is probably the reason why
20 I reacted that way.
21 I apologise to you, to my colleagues, and to the witness.
22 However, there was no ill-intention involved. I did not want to put words
23 in the witness's mouth. I reacted to something that I thought I had
24 heard, not what I had heard.
25 And secondly, as regards the other question, the Defence has
1 prepared photographs as agreed, and we did this in the same way in which
2 the Prosecution has been doing this when presenting photo documents.
3 JUDGE HUNT: But have you given them to the Prosecution yet?
4 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. I brought them.
5 This is our first day of trial after the break, so I thought that when we
6 finish the examination today, that I give them to the office of the
7 Prosecutor for them to see. For technical reasons -- I have a problem. I
8 have only one set of originals. I need to have them photocopied. I need
9 to make photocopies for them as well. So for the time being, they can
10 only have a look at my originals until I provide them with photocopies.
11 JUDGE HUNT: The present is not a witness to whom they should be
12 shown because he hasn't said that he saw anything. He heard something,
13 but he didn't see it. But my concern is that the Prosecution may want to
14 recall some of their witnesses to look at them, you see, so we've got to
15 get them to the Prosecution as soon as possible.
16 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, precisely. That is the
17 reason why I did not speed things up. This witness said that he had not
18 been upstairs, that these were rooms for isolation, and that's why I
19 thought that this was not relevant for this particular witness.
20 Therefore, I thought that I would discuss this matter with the Prosecutors
21 after we finish today, and then I could let them see my originals before I
22 have them photocopied.
23 JUDGE HUNT: And if I may say so, Mr. Bakrac, it was never even
24 close to my mind that you had attempted to force anything down the
25 witness's throat. It is a perfectly understandable situation that you
1 found yourself in. But my main thanks at the moment goes to the
2 interpretation people who managed to check it so swiftly for us.
3 Now let's proceed with the witness.
4 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
5 Q. Sir, can you tell me whether you stated to the investigators of
6 the OTP that Mr. Mitar Rasevic thought that Muslims do not have to be
7 detained at the KP Dom, however, that he was powerless from that point of
8 view because he had a war assignment that he had to carry out?
9 A. Yes, that is correct.
10 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters note, could the witness please
11 speak into the microphone.
12 JUDGE HUNT: Sir, if you could bring your chair up a little bit
13 closer to the microphones. The interpreters are having trouble hearing
14 you. Thank you.
15 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Did you also state to the investigators of the OTP that you talked
17 to Mr. Rasevic about the poor conditions at the KP Dom and that he told
18 you that people outside lived even worse?
19 A. Yes, precisely. That is exactly what he said. But that cannot be
20 considered correct, actually.
21 Q. Was the economic situation difficult at that time?
22 A. It is correct that the economic situation was difficult; however,
23 it did not mean that there had to be welfare in order to improve the
24 conditions under which we lived. It would have been very easy to make a
25 furnace out of an empty barrel and to resolve our problem.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 Q. Thank you, sir. Do you know who replaced Commander Kovac as the
2 head of the Tactical Group Foca?
3 A. I don't know exactly. I think that rumour had it that it was a
4 man called Paprica. I don't know exactly.
5 Q. Thank you. Did you state at the state security centre that after
6 the problems involved with your exchange in 1994 that all the leaders from
7 Foca came, rather, Commander Paprica, Tijanic Milutin, and Savo --
8 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the last name.
9 Could counsel read slower, please.
10 A. Yes, that is correct. They came to Miljevina.
11 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Thank you.
13 JUDGE HUNT: I hope you heard the complaint from the interpreters
14 then, Mr. Vasic. When you're reading something, please slow down. It's a
15 very natural thing to do when you're reading, to speed up.
16 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I was not aware of the objection. I
17 do apologise to you, Your Honour, and I will pay attention.
18 Q. Sir, did you state to the investigator of the OTP that you saw
19 Milorad Krnojelac at the KP Dom 40 per cent in military uniform and 60 per
20 cent in civilian clothes, 60 per cent of the time?
21 A. Absolutely correct. However, I said then that was not an exact
22 percentage nor could I time him.
23 Q. Thank you. Did you state to the investigator of the OTP that Savo
24 Todovic was in charge of the detained Muslims and that he passed decisions
25 on how they would be treated, about food, about work, and about who would
1 be beaten up?
2 A. That is correct. However, it wasn't that strict, and I could not
3 have put it that way, that it was strictly only Savo Todovic that was in
4 charge of that. He was in charge, to a larger extent, to affairs related
5 to us, the Muslim detainees. As for the affairs, operative that had to do
6 with the Serbs, Miro Prodanovic was in charge of that. I don't know
7 whether there was someone else in addition to him, but that's the way it
9 Q. Thank you. You spoke about persons that you knew were beaten up.
10 Can you tell us in which room Mr. Uzeir Hadzalic was, if you know?
11 A. When I came to the camp on the 20th of May, he was in Room 13.
12 Our windows faced each other. This is on the first floor of the old part
13 of the building. I don't know where he was before that because I don't
14 know exactly when he was brought in before that.
15 Q. Sir, you mentioned Mr. Ivancic and a detail that he left his watch
16 behind. In which room was he when he left this watch behind, and who did
17 he leave the watch to; do you know that?
18 A. I don't know exactly who he left the watch to. He was in a room
19 right next to my room, Room 13, where the corner was, the corner of the
20 building itself, because the windows faced each other. I don't know who
21 he exactly left the watch to, but men from his room talked about it, that
22 that evening when he was taken out of the room, he left the watch to be
23 given to his child, his son, who was about a year old then. Yes, he was a
24 year old. I remember that he had this celebration, and I remember that
25 they -- that my Serb neighbours came and told me that I should tell Mata
1 to leave from there, and he went to stay with his brother-in-law.
2 Nevertheless, that is where he was arrested and taken to the KP Dom.
3 Q. Thank you. I know that you said that you knew that he did not
4 take part in the slaughter of Serbs in Croatia, and he had been accused of
5 having done that. How come you know that?
6 A. I know because he told me about it, his wife told me about it, and
7 he showed me his passport where it was obvious that at that time he was in
8 Germany. He went to work as a seasonal worker there. He took annual
9 leave or unpaid leave of absence from the company where he worked
11 Q. Thank you. You also mentioned that Mr. Mustafa Kuloglija had a
12 conflict with a Serb which later led to his mistreatment. Do you know
13 which Serb this was? Do you know?
14 A. I only know his nickname. His nickname was Maradona.
15 Q. Thank you. You also said that you talked to Kruno Marinovic. Did
16 he tell you where he had been beaten up and who had beaten him up?
17 A. I don't know where Kruno Marinovic was arrested and where he was
18 brought to. This was at the very beginning. He told me that a few times
19 he was questioned and mistreated in the administration building.
20 Q. Did he tell you that he was beaten up before coming to the KP Dom?
21 A. I guess they beat him while he was being arrested and while he was
22 being brought into custody.
23 Q. Thank you. When you talked about the group that was taken out by
24 Cosa and others, in response to my learned friend's question you said that
25 Munib Veiz was also there; however, you did not mention him until now in
1 any one of your statements. Is it only now that you remembered him?
2 A. In the camp, as far as I know, there were two Veizes. I tend to
3 confuse their first names. I don't know exactly whether I said Munib or
4 the other one. What was his name? One was a salesperson and the other
5 one was a policeman before the war.
6 I just know his -- I just know both of their last names, Veiz. I
7 think that Munib Veiz was the one who was a salesperson, but what I stated
8 exactly -- I mean, whether it was Munib Veiz or the other one -- oh,
9 what's his name? I can't remember exactly now.
10 Q. In your statements you did not mention a single Veiz. You only
11 mentioned Nurko Nisic and Mustafa Kuloglija. Now you mention Munib Veiz,
12 too, that's why I asked you. Did you remember him just now, because you
13 had not mentioned him before, either him or the other Veiz?
14 A. As I told you a few minutes ago, Mr. Vasic, I remembered many
15 things as I was giving one statement and then the other statement as I
16 went back to these things. You are making a collection now of all these
17 things, what I did state in Sarajevo, what I did not state to the
18 investigators here, et cetera.
19 I just remembered a few minutes ago a detail that I did not tell
20 anyone until now. The same man that you asked me about a few minutes ago,
21 the one who said that half of the Muslims should be killed was Alija
22 Izetbegovic, that he gave a statement for Radio Foca to the reporters
23 there. He said that the conditions of life in the KP Dom were basically
24 perfect and that we had food every day and that we had meat every day. He
25 had to say that, I guess, and I don't think I ever told anyone about this,
1 but this is a detail I just remembered now.
2 Q. Thank you. You also remembered to say before the Trial Chamber
3 things related to persons whom you called the minesweepers, that they went
4 in front of the convoy in search of mines and all that. You remembered
5 all of that only now?
6 A. I don't know which case you're referring to exactly. Kaguhanic
7 [phoen] Muhamed went in a freight vehicle, the one that we had repaired in
8 the metal shop, and he went towards Gorazde; and Hafaruk [phoen] Saban
9 also went; and other people were also taken out into these minefields.
10 Q. That's what you said in front of the Trial Chamber, I agree.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. I'm not asking you about that. I'm just asking you whether you
13 remembered that subsequently as well, just now, just before you
15 A. I don't know whether I mentioned that before, whether I was asked
16 about that at all. However, I do know what I told you just now.
17 Q. Thank you. You said that your brother had been released. Can you
18 tell us where your brother went for medical treatment after he was
19 released from the KP Dom?
20 A. To Serbia very briefly, and from Serbia he went to Slovenia, and
21 then after Slovenia he went to Germany.
22 Q. Thank you. Today you mentioned a doctor who is your friend. Can
23 you give us his name, the man who worked in the KP Dom and then left in
24 August 1992?
25 A. As I said, many people asked me not to mention their names because
1 the time is still not right for that.
2 Q. Can you write his name down for us?
3 A. Yes.
4 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Could the usher please help me with
6 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Zekovic, you have no problem with the defendant
7 seeing this name, have you? It won't be announced publicly, but have you
8 any problem with him seeing it?
9 A. Yes, that's fine. No problem whatsoever.
10 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you. That name will be -- that piece of paper
11 will become Exhibit P434 and it will be under seal.
12 Show it to the Prosecution too, please.
13 Yes, Mr. Vasic.
14 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. Thank you to
15 the witness for his answer.
16 Q. Today you mentioned a person who did not want to release your
17 brother in spite of all the interventions that were made. Can you tell us
18 who that person was?
19 A. I don't know exactly who it was. However, perhaps I should repeat
20 this. Perhaps I should explain.
21 These people who intervened on his behalf and also this man who
22 had these lists, who was in this circle of people who decided who would be
23 released and who would not be released, he was in conflict with some of
24 these people who were intervening. Then he said, "Well, since
25 such-and-such a person is intervening, then he is not going to be
1 released," but the exact name I don't know.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 JUDGE HUNT: Mr. Vasic, before you proceed, it's been pointed out
4 to me that I had overlooked the fact that P434 has already been given to
5 another document. This should be P435, that name.
6 You proceed.
7 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Q. You said that Mr. Boro Ivanovic, who was appointed by the military
9 command or, rather, that he was in charge of the KP Dom and that he was
10 Mr. Krnojelac's superior. Was Mr. Krnojelac also appointed to the
11 military command to the post of warden?
12 A. As far as I know, Mr. Krnojelac was also a member of the Crisis
13 Staff. Now, whether he was more important or, rather, whether Boro
14 Ivanovic was more important with regard to certain matters and whether
15 Boro Ivanovic was more important or the warden in terms of other matters,
16 I don't know about that. I don't know about this hierarchy. Everybody
17 wanted to be warden, commander.
18 Q. How come you know that Mr. Milorad Krnojelac was a member of the
19 Crisis Staff?
20 A. Rumour had it; people talked.
21 Q. Who talked?
22 A. Serbs talked.
23 Q. Can you explain why you never revealed such an important fact to
24 anyone until now? Now you're saying he was a member of the Crisis Staff.
25 A. It didn't occur to me. I mentioned these names a few times, that
1 is true, but with regard to some matters, I thought about them more, and I
2 also leafed through my own notes.
3 Q. It did not occur to you? Didn't the OTP investigator ask you
4 about this when you were giving your statement?
5 A. It did not occur to me then.
6 Q. Can you tell us who you heard this from exactly or is this
7 something that you are inferring?
8 A. On the basis of the conversation that I was eavesdropping on, I
9 realised that the warden was probably one of the members of the Crisis
10 Staff too. There were several of them. There were some changed as well.
11 Some of them left the Crisis Staff in Foca in the summer of 1992 and then
12 others, new persons, were appointed. It wasn't all that important to me
13 to go into all those details, to know who was a member, who was not a
15 Q. Thank you. I should like to ask you to have a look at Schedule C
16 attached to the indictment and tell us if you know who among these persons
17 was in which room.
18 A. Juso Dzamalija, as we said, was in solitary confinement, and he
19 came to a bad end. Kemal Dzelilovic, the Professor, he was in Room 11.
20 Ramo Dzendusic was in Room 16 when he was brought in, and by the time he
21 was taken away from the camp, I don't know in which room he was then.
22 Adil Granov was detained for a long time in this isolation cell, in
23 solitary confinement, in the old part of the building. Where he was
24 later, I don't know. Nail Hodzic was also in the old part of the
25 building. I think it was Room 13. Mate Ivancic was in the old wing of
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 the building. I think it was Room 15. I can't say exactly, but he was
2 right on top of me. I was in Room 18, and he was right above me in the
3 old part of the building. Halim Konjo was in that same room, 15, Mustafa
4 Kuloglija as well. Krunoslav Marinovic was in the old wing, first in Room
5 11, then I think he was transferred to 13. Nurko Nisic was in Room 13.
6 Rikalo -- Munib Veiz and Zulfo Veiz were in the old wing of the building
7 in Rooms 13 and 15. Zulfo Veiz was certainly in that room, and I don't
8 know where Munib was in the beginning.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 A. Out of all these people, no one was in the same room as I was, if
11 I remember correctly.
12 Q. And as for others whom you didn't mention from this list, you
13 don't know or you don't know them?
14 A. I mentioned only the people whom I knew and whose whereabouts I
15 was aware of. I don't know about -- I don't know Altoka, and I don't know
16 where he was located.
17 Q. Thank you very much. I just wanted this clarified.
18 Sir, have you discussed the subject of your testimony with anyone?
19 A. What do you mean, the subject of my testimony?
20 Q. Did you discuss what you are saying here after you gave your
21 statement to the OTP?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Did you discuss the subject of your testimony here with anyone in
24 The Hague?
25 A. No, not this specifically, but I discussed some things on some
1 unrelated things with people, with some people such as who is where
2 nowadays and how they are doing.
3 Q. Did you talk to anyone before you started testifying here before
4 the Court?
5 A. No. I went straight up there where I live. I have no one to
6 discuss it with.
7 Q. Can you write us the names of people with whom you discussed those
8 other things you mentioned?
9 A. You mean the names?
10 Q. Yes. Can you please write down their names?
11 A. Yes, why not?
12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] With the help of the usher --
13 MS. KUO: Your Honour, the Prosecution is concerned that this
14 question is extremely vague. It's asking this witness to talk about -- to
15 name people with whom he discussed things other than his testimony. It
16 could be anything.
17 JUDGE HUNT: It is a little vague, Mr. Vasic. He has said that he
18 asked people who -- where somebody else had got to or where he was living
19 now. Are you really concerned as to who he said that to?
20 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, my previous question was
21 whether he talked to anyone in The Hague about this case, and the witness
22 said that he did discuss things like where some people are and how they
23 are doing.
24 JUDGE HUNT: And how they are doing, that's right. What possible
25 relevance is that to anything we have to decide here? Chit-chat; it's
1 just general discussion.
2 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Yes, but the Defence is bearing in
3 mind what the witness said, one of the witnesses who appeared here. He
4 said that the case has been discussed with other witnesses, that is -- I
5 mean, the previous witness who was here.
6 JUDGE HUNT: That may well be so. But this witness has said the
7 only thing he has discussed is the whereabouts of some of the people that
8 were with him in the KP Dom and how they're getting on. Now, that's
9 discussing the case. The only thing that they would be improperly
10 discussing would be what they should say in answer to various questions,
11 and this has got nothing to do with that.
12 If you want to say, "Have you had any discussions with a member of
13 the OTP," if that's what you're getting at, ask it; but to ask this
14 witness to disclose who he has been talking to simply about the
15 whereabouts of some of the people he knew about is, in my view, quite
17 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the Defence does not
18 intend to ask the witness whether he discussed it with anyone from the
19 OTP, but we do intend to ask about the contents of the discussion if he
20 discussed it, for instance, with the previous witness, because that
21 witness did say that it was the subject of their testimony that was
23 JUDGE HUNT: Which witness was that? I don't recall that
24 evidence. I'm not saying it wasn't given, but I don't recall it.
25 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: I do not recall in which relation the Witness
1 73 wrote down the names of two persons he talked about, but I do not
2 recall now exactly what about. He mentioned that he spoke about what
3 happened in the KP Dom with two other people.
4 JUDGE HUNT: Yes.
5 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: And, of course, one of them was the witness.
6 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, I realise that.
7 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: And I don't recall now the exact relation.
8 JUDGE HUNT: You see, Ms. Kuo said it was too vague. If you want
9 to find out whether he has discussed the evidence which he has given and
10 which he should give, that's one matter. But he has not said that, and
11 the other witness, as I understand, didn't say that either.
12 If you can point out to me where it is, I'll be very grateful to
14 [Defence counsel confer]
15 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, since we cannot locate
16 the place where the witness said this specifically, perhaps it would be
17 best to ask the witness directly whether he has discussed his evidence
18 with other witnesses here in The Hague. Maybe that should clarify it.
19 JUDGE HUNT: But Ms. Kuo's point is still a good one, just the
20 subject matter of the evidence. The subject matter of the evidence here
21 is KP Dom. Now, if he has discussed with somebody else what has happened
22 to so and so and where are they now and how are they getting on, that, I
23 suppose, could be very broadly the subject of the evidence that he's
24 giving here, but that's not something which is appropriate on an issue of
1 The issue of credit goes to whether or not he's discussed with
2 somebody, told them somebody who's going to give evidence, "This is the
3 evidence I've given. You make sure you give the same"; or he discusses
4 with the witness who had preceded him to say, "What did you say in answer
5 to this so that I'm the same as you?" Otherwise, it's completely
6 irrelevant to any question of credit. So let's try and keep it down to
7 what is really relevant in this case, please.
8 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, my question was
9 precisely meant to sound as you suggested, that is, did the witnesses
10 agree on how they will testify or did they exchange information regarding
11 their testimony. That was to be the essence of my question. Thank you,
12 Your Honour.
13 JUDGE HUNT: I won't send you a bill for settling your question,
14 but I suggest you ask the question that I put to you.
15 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Sir, did you talk with witnesses who were waiting here to
17 testify? Did you discuss the subject matter of your evidence in the sense
18 that you were advising each other how you testified, or did you discuss
19 evidence presented by another witness before this Court?
20 A. In all these conversations, we never talked strictly about things
21 which are discussed here nor was it ever necessary for me to receive
22 instructions from anyone how I should testify about the things I have
23 experienced and I've gone through nor did I have any need to give anyone
24 any advice or instructions what they should say and what they should talk
25 about, and my -- I have been warned that this type of contact and
1 discussion was prohibited, and I have also been told that there is some
2 kind of tapping, and I did not want to jeopardise the purpose of my being
3 here through some senseless chit-chat or innuendo.
4 Q. Thank you, sir.
5 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] The Defence has no further questions.
6 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you, Mr. Vasic.
7 Ms. Kuo.
8 Re-examined by Ms. Kuo:
9 Q. Mr. Zekovic, you were asked by Mr. Vasic about your statement that
10 Mr. Krnojelac was a member of the Crisis Staff. Could you tell us
11 specifically what you heard on which you based that conclusion?
12 A. Yes. I have already said I made some notes after I left the
13 camp. After my first appearance here, when I came back home, I leafed
14 through them, and I found in one place that I overheard the conversation
15 of staff in the KP Dom, and it was to the effect -- it went something
16 like, "Where is the warden?" "He went to a meeting of the Crisis Staff."
17 And I've heard some other conversations like that, but whether it was the
18 Crisis Staff, whether it was the command, was it within the limits of the
19 KP Dom or not, I couldn't know such things.
20 Q. The notes that you refer to that you looked through during the
21 break, when did you prepare those notes, approximately?
22 A. That was after my release from the camp in 1994/1995. I wrote
23 down some things as I remembered them, even subsequently.
24 Q. At the time that you prepared those notes, were they accurate, to
25 the best of your recollection?
1 A. Those are some details recorded as I remembered them, when I would
2 have flashbacks, when things would come back to me after reading or
3 hearing something, when I would go back in my mind to that time and I
4 would remember things. Those were sometimes very brief, one-sentence
5 notes or just a couple of sentences. I still have these things at my
6 place. I gave some of them -- I made some of them available to the
7 investigative authorities who had visited me, but they did not make
8 photocopies of all my material, but they did make copies of most of it.
9 Q. Are you able to tell us today when this statement was made that
10 you recorded, in other words, when it was that the warden had to go to
11 this meeting of the Crisis Staff?
12 A. I'm sorry, I didn't quite understand the question. When did I
13 write it down or at what time in the camp was it that he went to that
15 Q. At what time in the camp.
16 A. That was just before the New Year 1993, end of December. We
17 didn't work for about two or three days around the 20th of December. Then
18 we went out to work again. And once we were pouring fuel, petrol into the
19 tanks of vehicles. The fuel came in barrels of 200 litres. We would pour
20 it first into buckets and then into vehicles. Then from inside a car I
21 heard a conversation between guards. One of them asked, "Where is the
22 warden?" The other one replied, "He's gone. He has a meeting of the
23 Crisis Staff to attend."
24 Q. So this is December 1992; right?
25 A. Yes, that's true. It was the end of December 1992.
1 Q. I'd like to clarify a statement that you made during the
2 cross-examination where you said someone stated to you - again this was
3 very recently - "If you are not guilty, why go to all this trouble to
4 defend yourself?" Could you tell us to whom this statement was directed?
5 A. Yes. I said that about Boro Ivanovic.
6 Q. Do you know what the reference is to "all this trouble to defend
7 yourself"? In what way, as far as you know, has Boro Ivanovic been trying
8 to defend himself?
9 A. That's something I was told by a friend of mine very recently. He
10 has direct contacts with people from Gorazde. They went to work on his
11 house as craftsmen. They are Muslims. In their conversations with this
12 man, with Boro Ivanovic, they discussed what had been done, how many
13 people had been killed, and he kept justifying himself, saying that he
14 didn't do anything, that he didn't know anything about it, that it was
15 others who did that just as everyone else says, and one of these craftsmen
16 said, "Why are you going to such lengths to justify yourself if you were
17 not involved at all?" Because if somebody's so busy justifying himself,
18 then he had a hand in it. His conscience is not clear.
19 Q. Did the people who spoke with you tell you whether Ivanovic said
20 anything about Krnojelac's role?
21 A. No.
22 Q. You were asked questions during cross-examination about this
23 vehicle that you saw which had just been washed and you saw blood in the
24 water, and there were some questions asked about the use of the vehicle at
25 the fish farm. Is it possible that the blood you saw that day, that
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 morning, came from fish blood?
2 A. It's absolutely impossible.
3 Q. Why is that?
4 A. Because I know. Because every day before that I had been out in
5 that yard, and that car was parked in the yard of the metalwork shop. And
6 the atmosphere at the time, the prevailing situation was such that there
7 was no question of going fishing, and the fishpond had been destroyed.
8 There was no fish there any more.
9 Q. I'd like to ask you about something brought up during
10 cross-examination which is that you never mentioned what happened to Dzemo
12 MS. KUO: And if I could have the assistance of the usher in
13 showing the witness what was marked for identification as ID 334, and it
14 will be page 4, ten lines from the bottom in the B/C/S version. In the
15 English version, which is ID 334A, it's at the top of page 4.
16 Q. And this is a statement that you gave to the security services
17 centre in Sarajevo in October 1994. I'll just read it to you and have you
18 confirm whether you said this. It's ten lines from the bottom, sir.
19 Did you tell the security forces at that time: "Likewise in the
20 same period, a number of prisoners suspected of being SDA activists and of
21 possessing weapons were taken to solitary confinement where they were
22 beaten up. I know that Dzemo Balic spent 25 days in solitary confinement,
23 but would not give away SDA members and other individuals who possessed
24 weapons." Is that accurate? Is that what you told the state security
25 centre in October 1994?
1 A. I'm not sure that I said it in those words. Dzemo Balic told me
2 before he was taken away, and he hadn't spoken to anyone for a long time
3 before that, he said that he was beaten something horrible. They were
4 forcing him to make a list of SDA members, lists of people who had
5 weapons, some kind of lists of wartime assignments, and he couldn't do
6 that because he didn't know anything of the kind. He just couldn't.
7 Q. But you did say, you did mention in your statement in 1994 about
8 what happened to Mr. Balic, right?
9 A. Yes.
10 MS. KUO: No further questions, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE HUNT: Thank you, sir. That concludes your evidence. Thank
12 you for giving that evidence. You may now leave.
13 [The witness withdrew]
14 JUDGE HUNT: Now, according to the file, FWS-214 has no protective
15 measures, or is it one of the ones we just dealt with?
16 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, Your Honour, he has requested nothing.
17 JUDGE HUNT: Fine, thank you.
18 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, nevertheless we have prepared a
19 sheet of people for this witness because he may refer to other witnesses.
20 JUDGE HUNT: Yes, yes. Have you got a document there?
21 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE HUNT: It will be Exhibit P-436, and it will be under seal.
23 Whilst we're waiting for the witness to arrive, we have another
24 problem tomorrow afternoon. Judge Mumba and I are once again required for
25 an administrative purpose. I hope it's the last of the interruptions of
1 this trial, which are becoming somewhat tedious.
2 We have to be at this meeting at 3.30. Now, it seems to me that
3 we'll need some time to get there. If we sit through to 3.20, my question
4 is whether we would be able to resume at 2.20 so at least we get an hour.
5 That will require some consideration to be given by the interpreters and
6 typists and those who have rather strict rules about breaks. When we
7 resume after they've had a chance to consider the matter, they can let us
8 know in the morning, but we will certainly be adjourning at 3.20 tomorrow
10 As I say, I hope it's the last of these interruptions.
11 [The witness entered court]
12 JUDGE HUNT: Will you please make the solemn declaration. It's
13 set out in the document which is being shown to you now.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
15 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
16 WITNESS: AMIR BERBERKIC
17 [Witness answered through interpreter]
18 JUDGE HUNT: Sit down please, sir. Yes, Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff.
19 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 Examined by Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff:
21 Q. Good afternoon, sir.
22 A. Good afternoon.
23 Q. Please state your name and your birth date?
24 A. My name is Amir Berberkic. I was born on the 1st of January,
1 Q. Witness, you yourself had not requested any protective measures,
2 but other witnesses have done so. You find therefore in front of you a
3 sheet of paper with many names and many witness numbers, so in case you
4 want to refer to any of these witnesses listed here, please do not tell
5 their name but just refer to the number on this sheet of paper.
6 A. I have understood what you said.
7 Q. Where were you born?
8 A. I was born in Foca.
9 Q. What is your ethnicity?
10 A. Bosniak.
11 Q. And when you say Bosniak, do you mean a Muslim? Are you a Muslim?
12 A. I'm a Muslim by religion.
13 Q. Yes, thank you. Are you married?
14 A. I am married, and I have two children.
15 Q. Where did you live before the war?
16 A. I lived in the centre of town in a family home. The street of
17 Marsala Tita, number 21.
18 Q. What was your profession before the war?
19 A. Before the war I was a physician. I worked at the emergency ward
20 in the hospital in Foca.
21 Q. Were you a member of any political party?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Dr. Berberkic, I do not want to discuss political background or
24 tension in Foca. The only matters related to this, I would like to ask
25 you about two of your colleagues. And first of all, I would like to know
1 if you do know a Dr. Radovan Mandic?
2 A. I know Dr. Radovan Mandic personally because he worked at the
3 hospital. He was head of the haemology department. I know him
4 personally. I saw him a few times at the hospital. We attended
5 physicians' meetings together and also at meetings that we held of the
6 Association of Doctors of the Upper Drina Region, as it was called.
7 Q. Dr. Mandic, was he involved in politics especially? Was he an SDS
9 A. He was involved in politics as far as I know. He was engaged in
10 the so-called Focatrans affair which occurred two years before the war, I
11 think. I even watched him on television once when he made a statement at
12 the time. As far as I know, he was a member of the SDS, and I think -
13 people talked about it at the hospital then - that at the beginning of the
14 war he was president of the Crisis Staff of the SDS.
15 Q. Which people talked about his position in the Crisis Staff, Serbs
16 or Muslims or both?
17 A. I think that both talked about it. Foca is a small town. You
18 have to know that. Many things that happen in town and everything that
19 has to do with the town itself is found out very quickly.
20 Q. Do you know which position he had in the -- you said already he
21 was head of the Crisis Staff. Sorry. I also want to address another
22 doctor, Dr. Kornjaca. Do you know this person, Dr. Kronjaca, from
24 A. I know Dr. Kornjaca personally. I talked to him a few times. He
25 worked in Cajnice, at the hospital there. He stopped by very often at the
1 regional centre, the hospital in Foca where I worked. About a year before
2 the war broke out, he started wearing a camouflage uniform, which I found
3 to be very strange. I did not understand why he wore a long beard too and
4 a camouflage uniform, as I said, military boots as well, and also a small
5 leather bag which was worn by commanders in the Second World War,
6 something like that.
7 Once in Gorazde, perhaps about a year before the war broke out, we
8 had a meeting of the doctors' association. He appeared in camouflage
9 uniform at that meeting. Of course, at that time I did not understand
10 what this meant, what it was supposed to mean. I didn't pay much
11 attention to it, but I really wondered why a camouflage uniform at a
12 doctors' meeting.
13 Q. And Dr. Kornjaca, is he a Serb?
14 A. He's a Serb. Before the war, one morning in the newspaper
15 Oslobodjenje, on the last page, I remember very well that I read that
16 together with his brother and Dr. Miladin Lisov, who also worked at the
17 Foca hospital, who is a colleague of mine, that he was singing Chetnik
18 songs in the hotel in Cajnice. Of course, that morning as we were
19 drinking coffee, Dr. Lisov was there and also Dr. Aziz Torlak. He was a
20 surgeon who also worked at the hospital there. We were drinking coffee,
21 and I was reading Oslobodjenje, on that last page I found that text. Of
22 course I found it very strange, because Miladin Lisov was a participant.
23 He sang these songs too. I remember which songs he sang that --
24 Q. Thank you. That's enough. We do not need to go into more details
25 on this matter. Thank you.
1 Let's move on to April 1992 and the outbreak of the war in Foca.
2 When the war broke out in Foca, did you go to work that day?
3 A. I think it was Monday morning, the 7th of April. I had a car, a
4 Yugo, a red one, and I set out to go to work as I did every day before
5 that. However, I came across two roadblocks in the part of town that is
6 called Donje Polje. I didn't realise what was going on at the time. I
7 asked. These were people who belonged to the so-called Territorial
8 Defence. They wore uniforms that the prewar police had worn. Most of
9 these people were of Muslim ethnicity, and I asked them what was going
10 on. I said I was supposed to go to work to the hospital. They said it
11 was far too dangerous. They said they would let me through, but they
12 could not give me any guarantees that I would arrive at the hospital alive
13 because, as they had put it, the Chetniks started shooting from the hills
14 surrounding the town at the town itself.
15 I set out, and then in front of the KP Dom I saw a truck that was
16 parked right in the middle of the road. I somehow managed to drive around
17 this truck, and I managed to get to the hospital.
18 Q. How long did you stay at the hospital?
19 A. I stayed at the hospital for about 12 days or perhaps two weeks,
20 and I was present all the time until Foca fell. That was approximately
21 the 20th of April. That's when I left the hospital.
22 Q. During this time at the hospital, did you prepare for
24 A. That morning, we held a meeting of doctors who worked at the
25 surgery department, together with the head of surgery, Dr. Kosta Supic.
1 The meeting was attended by Aziz Torlak, myself, and our Serb colleagues,
2 doctors who happened to be working that morning. Our boss told us that
3 our task was to stay in the hospital, that we would organise everything
4 for the wounded, the wounded that would be coming in, as he had put it,
5 and also we would allocate duty according to different days and that we
6 would have a so-called emergency centre, a clinic where we would take in
7 the wounded. He also said to us that it would be smart if we would bring
8 the members of our families, our wives and children, to the hospital
9 because the hospital was a safe place.
10 Q. And did you actually receive wounded persons in the following days
11 and weeks?
12 A. Yes. Yes. I was on duty twice, in two shifts. The wounded that
13 we were taking in were primarily persons who were ethnic Muslims. I only
14 treated the wounds of a Serb soldier once, a man who was not from Foca.
15 By his accent, I assumed that he was from Serbia. He said, verbatim, "We
16 are going to expel and slaughter all the balijas from Foca." Of course,
17 he did not realise that I was a Muslim. A lot of the wounded were ethnic
19 I found this very strange. There was fighting in town. Then as I
20 talked to Dr. Aziz Torlak, I asked him what was going on. He said to me
21 something along these things: that the Serbs had their own field hospitals
22 or something out in the field where they took their wounded.
23 Q. And the wounded Muslims that you received, were they soldiers or
24 were they civilians or both?
25 A. A large number of them were mostly civilians. I saw one man whom
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 I supposed to be a military person, and I state that all the rest were
3 Q. You said that you were advised by your boss that you should take
4 your families to the hospital as well. Did you take your family to the
6 A. Yes, I did. I brought my wife and two children, who at the time
7 stayed at a village 4 kilometres away from the hospital. The village was
8 called Karadzic. It was on the Drina River. And on the very day that my
9 boss told us this, I brought my wife and children to the hospital. And
10 most of the other Muslim doctors who happened to be at the hospital did
11 the same. However, the Serbs didn't bring their wives and children to the
12 hospital, and later on it turned out that the day prior to that they had
13 sent their families towards Montenegro.
14 Q. Besides the families of the staff members, did other civilians or
15 other Muslims or Serbs or Croats take shelter in the hospital?
16 A. Yes. There was a large number of refugees from the section of the
17 town called Aladza and the section called Donje Polje, even Gornje Polje.
18 They were put in various units, wards. One of them were in the ward which
19 was on the ground floor, and we called that section of the hospital a
20 clinic. Among those people who were mostly civilians, women, elderly,
21 children who fled their homes.
22 Q. What ethnicity did these people have?
23 A. Those were mostly Muslims, Bosniaks.
24 Q. How long did your family stay in the hospital?
25 A. Approximately seven days because a problem emerged in the hospital
1 - there was no food, there was no milk - and I decided to send them back
2 to the village Karadza [phoen] where they had come from.
3 Q. Was the hospital taken over by Serb soldiers while you were there?
4 A. Yes, I believe that that happened on April the 17th in the
5 morning. I woke up -- or rather, I watched from the surgical ward through
6 the window and I saw soldiers in the park in front of the hospital, and it
7 appeared very strange to me. That was the first time that I saw
8 Chetniks. I came out with some nurses who worked with me. I went out
9 into this park, and I wanted to talk to these soldiers. I talked to one
10 of them who happened to be from my village, Josanica, and who in his
11 childhood had left for Serbia. And he told me that he lived in Serbia,
12 but that they had come in to save Serbs from the hands of Muslims.
13 Q. You said that you left the hospital approximately at the 20th of
14 April. Why did you leave the hospital?
15 A. Because the hospital was not safe any more. Chetniks had their
16 guards around the hospital. One could not leave the hospital without
17 their permission, without the permission of their chief whom they called
18 "Vojvoda." When they occupied the hospital, this Vojvoda held a meeting
19 with the director of the hospital, Sekula Stanic, and the physicians who
20 happened to be there in the hospital. I did not attend that meeting. I
21 was at a neurological ward at the time; however, the hospital became
22 unsafe -- was not safe any more. There were shots heard around the
24 I had an opportunity to see on the left bank of the Drina River a
25 van that passed with a white flag, and Vojvoda ordered his soldiers to
1 shoot at this van. They started firing from automatic weapons on this
2 van, and this van ended up in the river. We heard the screaming of women,
3 children. We were told that there were wounded, there were dead people
4 there. One of our drivers went to the scene, and I think that he brought
5 back two children, one woman, and one injured man, and told us that one
6 elderly woman was killed on that occasion, a driver, and one child. So I
7 left the hospital because it was not safe there any more.
8 Q. Dr. Berberkic, you used the term "Chetniks" now several times.
9 What do you mean when you say "Chetnik"?
10 A. While talking to this Serb who is -- was from my village but who
11 had left for Serbia, he told me that they were all Chetniks, and their
12 uniforms and the way they acted reminded me of the image of Chetniks
13 during the Second World War. They had these special hats, kokarda signs
14 and they had belts with ammunition. They wore long beards. They had
15 military boots and all the other equipment.
16 Q. So does that mean you refer to Serb soldiers who are dressed in
17 this particular way as Chetniks?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And you used -- you mentioned kokarda. What is this? You used
20 the word "kokarda."
21 A. I think that this is an old Serbian emblem that they had on their
22 hats, and I truly do not know the significance, the meaning of it. But I
23 did see that most of the soldiers around the hospital had this emblem on
24 their heads. I believe that an eagle is depicted on this emblem.
25 Q. While you were still in the hospital, did you see a person with
1 the name Adnan Isanovic in the hospital?
2 A. I saw him. I even talked to him very briefly. Dr. Torlak was
3 nearby as we talked. Adnan Isanovic was wounded, and it was a shot
4 injury. He was shot through his chest cage. We had to do an x-ray, which
5 we did, and Dr. Torlak, Aziz, said that an urgent surgical intervention
6 was needed in order to drain the blood that gathered in the chest cage. I
7 talked to Adnan very briefly because I was on duty and had to leave.
8 Q. Where did he come from when he came to the hospital?
9 A. I don't know exactly where he came from. I have no information to
10 this effect. I don't know whether he came on his own or he was brought
12 Q. What happened to him? Did you actually perform surgery on him?
13 A. As far as I know, surgery was not performed. Later on I heard
14 that some paramilitary formations took him away and another group of
15 wounded persons. They took them behind the hospital and shot them there.
16 Q. Adnan Isanovic, who was he? Did you know him from before?
17 A. I knew him personally. He was an owner of the pizzeria called
18 Amadeus. I frequented this pizzeria, and I believe he was quite a wealthy
19 man. He had a lot of money, and he was well known in town.
20 Q. Does he have a nickname? Do you know that?
21 A. As far as I know, we called him "Adis." I don't know if he had
22 another nickname.
23 Q. When you left the hospital, where did you go?
24 A. I went to the village to join my family, wife and children, and my
25 parents who lived nearby. The name of this village is Josanica. It is
1 some 4 kilometres away from the hospital on the right bank of the Drina
3 Q. In the direction of Gorazde?
4 A. Yes. This is downstream from the hospital towards Gorazde.
5 Q. In the following days, did you participate in the fighting?
6 A. No.
7 Q. Did you have a weapon?
8 A. I had a pistol. I believe it was called a "long 9." I don't know
9 much about weapons, but I was given this pistol by my neighbour Dzano
11 Q. Why did you take the weapon, or why did he give it to you?
12 A. I intended to protect myself in case of emergency and one can only
13 shoot one's self with a pistol. You can't do anything else with it.
14 Q. In this time period, did you observe attacks on Muslim villages in
15 this area around Josanica?
16 A. Yes. I saw -- I watched as they attacked, as Chetniks attacked
17 the village called Gornje Paunci, Donja Paunci, Filipovici, when they
18 captured military facilities in Filipovici, and when they attacked Donja
19 Josanica and Gornje Josanica.
20 Q. Those places that you just mentioned, are these Muslim villages?
21 A. The village is -- the villages on the left bank of the river,
22 Gornje Paunci, Donja Paunci, Filipovici was mostly a Muslim village,
23 whereas the village on the right bank of Drina was a mixed village,
24 Josanica, so it was both a Muslim and a -- both a Muslim and a Serb
1 Q. Did you see houses in the Muslim villages on the left side of the
2 river burn?
3 A. Yes, I saw them burn. Since I had binoculars at the time, I was
4 able to see soldiers coming into the houses, setting them on fire, taking
5 out television sets and other equipment. I saw them looting these
6 houses. And I could clearly see soldiers, their uniforms, weapons they
7 carried because the distance of the left and the right bank of the Drina
8 River is not great. So I could clearly see them set houses on fire one by
9 one and set villages on fire one by one as well.
10 Q. And when you said you saw soldiers, what kind of uniforms did they
12 A. Those were the same uniforms as Jovic's Chetniks wore. So the
13 same uniforms with typical hats on their heads, with ammunition belts. I
14 think those were Chetniks.
15 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: It's time, and we have to stop here at that
16 point and continue tomorrow.
17 JUDGE HUNT: Certainly. We will adjourn now and resume at 9.30 in
18 the morning.
19 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 4.00 p.m.,
20 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 13th day of March,
21 2001, at 9.30 a.m.