Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 9433

1 Thursday, 5 April 2001

2 [Open session]

3 --- Upon commencing at 9.25 a.m.

4 [The accused entered court]

5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Good morning, ladies and

6 gentlemen; good morning, technical booth; good morning to the

7 interpreters, the registry staff, the counsel for the Prosecution and for

8 the Defence. Good morning, General Krstic.

9 As you know, we are going to continue with the testimony of

10 witnesses of the Chamber, and we are going to begin with General

11 Halilovic. So, Mr. Usher, can you have the witness brought in.

12 Yes, Mr. Petrusic.

13 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, Your Honours, good

14 morning. Good morning, my learned friends opposite.

15 With your permission, before Mr. Halilovic comes into the

16 courtroom, the Defence would like to draw the attention of the Chamber to

17 the following fact. Actually, pursuant to a ruling of the Chamber with

18 respect to the witnesses proposed for today, General Halilovic and the

19 second witness, General Hadzihasanovic, the Chamber gave clear

20 instructions as to the time frame, the subject matter, and the

21 circumstances about which the witnesses will be testifying. I don't think

22 there is any need for me to quote from your ruling, because it is quite

23 clear.

24 Briefly, they are to testify about the period immediately prior to

25 the fall of Srebrenica, the fall of Srebrenica, and the movement of the

Page 9434

1 28th Division during that time period. In view of the fact that

2 yesterday, late in the afternoon, we received some documents referring, in

3 particular, to Witness Hadzihasanovic for the period from 1992 until 1995,

4 which, in form and in content, has been compiled in the form of an expert

5 report, I fear that if we do not abide by your instructions, that we will

6 go outside the scope and frame of the indictment and that we will find

7 ourselves in a situation in which we have been during the past fortnight

8 or so. To be more specific, I think we will find ourself in the same

9 situation as with respect to Exhibit 883, which is being disputed by the

10 parties.

11 Therefore, before we begin the hearing, my objection is intended

12 to request that the parties in the case limit themselves to the time and

13 content envisaged by the ruling of the Trial Chamber dated - allow me to

14 check the date - dated the 15th of December.

15 So I hope Your Honours will give the appropriate instructions to

16 the witness, that he will be asked to testify about those specific

17 circumstances. Thank you, Your Honours.

18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Petrusic, do you have a

19 particular date in mind? The order of the Chamber says before, during,

20 and after.

21 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, the ruling of the

22 Chamber says: "On the presence and role of the 28th Division of the army

23 of Bosnia-Herzegovina immediately prior to, during, and immediately after

24 the attack of the Serb forces on that division in July 1995 on the column

25 of people who attempted to leave the Srebrenica enclave during the attack;

Page 9435

1 especially its composition, the weapons at the disposal of the people in

2 the column, what happened to those people in the military sense, and

3 particularly their possible links with the operations that the Bosnian

4 forces conducted in the area of the Tuzla and generally the area under the

5 control of those forces on the breakthroughs possibly made by that column;

6 the number of participants in those breakthroughs; the casualties suffered

7 by the column; the time, as precise as possible, as to when the population

8 learnt about the capture, executions, or the sudden disappearance of

9 people from the column; the general circumstances of the taking of the

10 enclave from the standpoint of the civilian and military authorities of

11 the Muslims at the time of the events."

12 Mr. President, I have interpreted your ruling as specifying an

13 extremely very limited scope of time and events that the witnesses will be

14 called upon to testify about, but under no circumstances do I see it as

15 covering a time period which differs from the document that we have

16 received in this particular case signed by Hadzihasanovic, which covers

17 the period from 1992 to 1995. Rather, this document differs in time from

18 the ruling.

19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Petrusic.

20 Mr. Harmon, do you have any response to this?

21 MR. HARMON: Mr. President, these are witnesses who have been

22 summoned by Your Honours. We don't intend to -- attempt to restrict the

23 Court in its questioning of these witnesses. We intend to sit and listen

24 with interest to their testimony. In respect of my colleague's objection,

25 we have no observation at all on it, other than these are your witnesses.

Page 9436

1 JUDGE WALD: Mr. Petrusic, just so you're somewhat informed of my

2 viewpoint, it seems to me that the order that we issued which talks about

3 just before or immediately before, whatever the interpretation, is a

4 clause which I would interpret, in light of what's already in the record

5 here, to be the few months before the fall of Srebrenica in order to

6 encompass the kinds of testimony which you have presented, as well as the

7 Prosecution, dealing with what may have been the motivations for Krivaja

8 95, and what may have been the motivations for what took place. So

9 roughly I would say, from my point of view, it would encompass the early

10 part of the year of 1995 or the several months just before June.

11 But I would have to say that in terms of any discussion of what

12 provoked either side to do what either side did, it may be that one would

13 incidentally have to allude, at least, to the fact that one side thought

14 the other side was violating some agreement which had been arrived at

15 previously. But to that extent, you know, my interpretation would be at

16 least several months before the fall.

17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Allow me also to say that, as

18 you know, Mr. Petrusic, the Defence discussed at length the question of

19 the violation of agreements on demilitarisation. You discussed that at

20 length, so perhaps the Chamber should know what those agreements were, and

21 as you know, those agreements go back to 1993. So all those conditions

22 are very important in terms of understanding the Operation Krivaja 95 and

23 all that preceded the events which are the subject of our discussions.

24 So in my opinion, to limit ourselves to a few days or a few months

25 means limiting our ability to understand the whole. This does not mean

Page 9437

1 that General Krstic is responsible for those things, but in order to

2 understand the facts in the indictment, we need to know what preceded

3 them. But please proceed, Mr. Petrusic.

4 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, Your Honour Judge

5 Wald, your suggestions are quite appropriate, and it is only natural that

6 if the Defence during the testimony of General Krstic referred to certain

7 documents issued by General Hadzihasanovic or documents directed to

8 Hadzihasanovic, that both parties should review those documents and ask

9 them to be commented upon by General Hadzihasanovic himself for his

10 understanding of the situation.

11 Also, Mr. President, it seems to me that it is in the interest of

12 establishing the truth that if we have one of the creators and one of the

13 participants on the agreement on demilitarisation, that he should be

14 examined on those circumstances.

15 My principal suggestion or objection, and with respect to these

16 two items, topics, I have nothing to detract or add to what you, Your

17 Honour Judge Wald, have said, but my main concern is that the document

18 which the Defence received yesterday afternoon covers the period 1992 to

19 1995.

20 We have documents addressed by Hadzihasanovic to the 28th

21 Division, and vice versa. In the assessment of the Defence, this is a

22 military expert report, and that is how it is headed. And if we were to

23 be faced with the tendering of this document, then the whole situation

24 would change. We would have here a document called a military expert

25 report. That is my opinion, Mr. President. We would have a military

Page 9438

1 expert report which would deprive the Defence of the right to put many

2 questions to the witness. But I do agree with you and what Her Honour

3 Judge Wald said regarding the time period and the topics to which these

4 two Generals should testify.

5 Perhaps it would be best for us to proceed, and if the situation

6 so requires, I assume it is our right to object.

7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Harmon.

8 MR. HARMON: I will make one observation, Mr. President. Defence

9 Exhibit 160, which is a military expert report prepared by General

10 Radinovic, covers an area that is well before a few months before. It

11 goes back to 1991. As a matter of fact, in footnote 3 of that report, the

12 first witness is identified. That footnote refers to events in January of

13 1992. I merely point this out because I think any restriction that the

14 Defence is seeking to impose on Your Honours' ability to inquire goes in

15 the face of evidence that they themselves have presented to Your Honours

16 and which -- about which Your Honours may wish to raise some questions. I

17 only make that observation and point that out to Your Honours. Thank

18 you.

19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,

20 Mr. Harmon. We shall begin. We shall try to focus on the question of

21 Srebrenica, especially with regard to the agreements on demilitarisation,

22 which more or less define the Srebrenica enclave, focusing in particular

23 on that. But we will not be too strict because, as you know, one says

24 that to understand a fact, one has to view it in perspective. But in view

25 of time constraints, we can't go much further than that.

Page 9439

1 So, Mr. Usher, will you please bring the witness.

2 [The witness entered court]

3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Halilovic.

4 Can you hear me?

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning. I can.

6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You're going to read the solemn

7 declaration given to you by the usher, please.


9 [Witness answered through interpreter]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak

11 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be seated, please.

13 Questioned by the Court:

14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Before anything else is said, in

15 view of your past military responsibilities and your current political

16 responsibilities, I should like to ask you whether it is appropriate for

17 me to address you as General, Deputy, or Mr. Minister, or simply as

18 Mr. Halilovic? What do you prefer?

19 A. Whatever you find easiest, Your Honour.

20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Perhaps "General Halilovic" is

21 the best. Fine, then.

22 First of all, thank you for coming. I shall now ask you to

23 observe the procedure which I will outline for you. First of all, in

24 answer to questions about identification, could you please spell us your

25 first and last name.

Page 9440

1 A. My name is Sefer Halilovic.

2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Your date of birth?

3 A. The 6th of January, 1952, in Prijepolje.

4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] And what is your profession,

5 please?

6 A. Currently I'm minister for social welfare policy in the government

7 of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] And which is your city of

9 residence?

10 A. I'm now living in Sarajevo, Asikovac Street, number 6.

11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you. Before we begin your

12 examination proper, I should first like to thank you, on behalf of the

13 Chamber, for responding to our summons. I don't doubt that in view of

14 responsibilities, you are a very busy man, and therefore the Chamber will

15 thank you for the information you conveyed to it in your letter of the

16 23rd of January.

17 I should like to specify for you the framework within which your

18 testimony will fit. You have been called as a Court witness, whereas

19 normally it is the parties that call witnesses to this Tribunal. As the

20 President of the Chamber, it is my duty to indicate to you briefly the

21 conditions under which your examination will take place.

22 In accordance with the solemn declaration you have just taken, you

23 are obliged and expected to tell us the whole truth. The hearing is, in

24 principle, held in public, and we would like to keep it public as much as

25 possible. However, if you should feel it necessary, you can ask the

Page 9441

1 Chamber to make a ruling to go into private session, or even into closed

2 session, which in practice means that during the duration of the private

3 session, the public will not hear your statements, nor any -- and the

4 transcript of your testimony will not be made public.

5 If you have any notes, you may use them to refresh your memory,

6 but we would like to ask you not to read a statement prepared in advance.

7 In accordance with our order issued at the end of December, we ask you to

8 make a spontaneous statement on the facts that you have knowledge of in

9 regard to the attack on the Srebrenica enclave by the Serb forces in July

10 1994 [as interpreted], the fall of the enclave, and the destiny of its

11 military and civilian population.

12 You may perhaps then be examined by the parties, but it is up to

13 them to decide whether they will do so.

14 Judge Wald draws my attention to the fact that I said 1995. In

15 the transcript it says 1994.

16 As I was saying, the Judges will put questions to you. You may,

17 if you so wish to, not answer a question; however, I must caution you that

18 that is only if your reply may incriminate you. This is Rule 90 (F) of

19 our Rules of Procedure, and even then, the Judges may request you to

20 answer, but what you say may not be used against you later on.

21 We will have a break later on, or maybe earlier if General Krstic

22 needs a break.

23 As President of the Chamber, I wanted to tell you briefly, as the

24 parties would do to their witnesses, what are their duties, what are their

25 rights, how things will evolve, so there we are.

Page 9442

1 We are going to focus on the demilitarise -- on the agreements on

2 demilitarisation and from then on. So please, we ask you now to make your

3 spontaneous statement on the points that we have mentioned for more or

4 less an hour, an hour 20, after which we will have a break.

5 So General Halilovic, we are listening to you.

6 A. First of all, allow me to say that I want to make my statement in

7 public.

8 In the letter addressed to you, I indicated the position I held in

9 the army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina; that is, until 8th of

10 June, 1993, I was Chief of Staff of the Main Staff of the army of

11 Bosnia-Herzegovina and member of the presidency of the Republic of

12 Bosnia-Herzegovina. In that period, I was actively in command of the army

13 of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I took part in the negotiations

14 on the demilitarisation of Srebrenica and Zepa in April and May 1993.

15 From the 8th of June, 1993, the position of the command of the

16 Main Staff was introduced in the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I held

17 that position until November the 1st, 1993. From November the 1st, 1993,

18 by decision of the presidency, I was placed at their disposal, and I was

19 no longer in the army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which means

20 that since November the 1st, 1993, or rather, from that time until the end

21 of the war in 1995, I have been observing the situation on the

22 battlefronts of Bosnia-Herzegovina as a civilian, as a citizen. In view

23 of the position I held in the army and in the presidency of the Republic

24 of Bosnia-Herzegovina, it is only natural that I followed closely what was

25 happening in the theatre of war, and especially in Srebrenica.

Page 9443

1 I have read a series of publications, books, newspaper reports,

2 and all other reports that I could get hold of linked to the events in

3 July 1995 in Srebrenica.

4 In my speeches and writings, I was critical of the policies

5 conducted by the state and military leadership of the Republic of

6 Bosnia-Herzegovina because my position was that the moves they were taking

7 on the battlefront, both in political and military terms, were favouring

8 the paramilitary forces of the Bosnian Serbs and the forces coming from

9 Serbia and Montenegro. A series of measures that were taken with respect

10 to the defence of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and especially

11 Srebrenica and Zepa, played into the hands of our enemies rather than

12 contributing to the defence of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

13 In my book, I have given five or six arguments or reasons

14 contributing to the fall of the Srebrenica and Zepa enclaves which fully

15 corresponded to the policy pursued by the political and military

16 leadership of the rebel Serbs in Bosnia-Herzegovina and which suited the

17 aggressor forces against the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The basis

18 for the activities of the rebel Bosnian Serbs were the decisions on the

19 strategic goals of the Serbian people in Bosnia-Herzegovina adopted by the

20 assembly, the so-called assembly of the Serb people in Banja Luka in May

21 1992, or, to be more precise, on the 12th of May, 1992, and which were

22 published in the Official Gazette of Republika Srpska on the 26th of

23 November, 1993.

24 As they are very brief, allow me to read them out. "The strategic

25 goals or priorities of the Serb people in Bosnia and Herzegovina are:

Page 9444

1 One, a state delineation with the other two national communities; two, a

2 corridor between Semberija and Krajina; three, the establishment of a

3 corridor in the Drina River valley."

4 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, it is most

5 reluctantly that I am objecting, but it is my submission that reference to

6 this Official Gazette of Republika Srpska, the witness is going far beyond

7 the subject matter and the scope of his testimony with regard to the

8 developments in Srebrenica.

9 I hope you will not wrongly interpret the position of the Defence,

10 but I think it would be far more effective if the witness could focus on

11 the events in which he was directly involved in or what he may have heard

12 from other sources, but with special regard to the ruling that you made on

13 the scope of his testimony.

14 I apologise for the interruption.

15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Harmon, what is your

16 response?

17 MR. HARMON: Again, Mr. President, this is Your Honours'

18 witnesses. We don't have any observations in respect to Mr. Petrusic's

19 objection.

20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General Halilovic, perhaps it

21 might be more useful for the Chamber if you were to concentrate on the

22 facts that you participated in as an actor or an observer. We do not wish

23 you to take the position of an expert witness. You are, rather, a fact

24 witness. You told us that you participated in the negotiations on the

25 demilitarisation of Srebrenica. Perhaps you could start with that and

Page 9445

1 then go on to the fall and the developments that followed after the fall

2 of Srebrenica, because we have time constraints, as you know. So if you

3 could focus your testimony on these points, it would be better.

4 In any event, thank you very much for preparing your statement,

5 but if you could go more directly to those points, it would be better.

6 A. If I may, I would just like to quote the third point which relates

7 to Srebrenica and Zepa: "With the establishment of the corridor of the

8 lower flow of the Drina --" the Drina being the river, the borderline

9 river between the two states, between Serb states.

10 I took part in the negotiations on the demilitarisation of

11 Srebrenica and Zepa in April and May 1993. And for the situation to be

12 clearer to you, to make it clearer, let me say that the operation for the

13 realisation of this third goal, the assembly of the Bosnian people in

14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, it began in January 1993 at the same time as the

15 attack on the Bosnian Croats on upper Vakuf and the valley of the river

16 Neretva and certain regions of Central Bosnia.

17 The attack was -- they were coordinated by the Serbs and Croats.

18 I would like to remind you of this and then go on to the demilitarisation

19 agreement.

20 On the 16th of April, 1993, there was an attack on the village of

21 Ahmici, that is to say, at the same time when there was fierce fighting

22 for taking over the territory of Konjevic Polje, Kamenica, Srebrenica,

23 Zepa, and so on and so forth. The negotiations took place on the 18th of

24 April at the Sarajevo airport, but before that, it was announced from

25 General Morillon as the commander of UNPROFOR in Bosnia-Herzegovina. On

Page 9446

1 the 30th of March, 1993, I received a letter which announced that UNPROFOR

2 units were going to be deployed within the Serb enclave - Srebrenica

3 enclave, I'm sorry - and there was initiative for this already in

4 February, and this was given by President Izetbegovic as a sign of

5 goodwill.

6 The first agreement was signed on the 17th of April, 1993, at the

7 Sarajevo airport. I and General Mladic signed it in the presence of

8 General Wahlgren as the UNPROFOR representative. I think that the

9 contents of that agreement is well-known to you and it refers to the urban

10 area of Srebrenica. It states that the demilitarisation will take place

11 within the space of 72 hours and that all weapons, mines, ammunition, and

12 materiel, except medical material, in Srebrenica will be handed over to

13 UNPROFOR under supervision of three officers on each side, and that in the

14 town no person which is armed or any armed unit will remain in town except


16 In preparing for this testimony, I must say that I was -- did not

17 have access to any archives --

18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, I apologise for

19 interrupting you, but the interpreters are asking that you slow down,

20 please, because they are having difficulty in following you. Please,

21 would you slow down, General. Thank you, but please continue.

22 A. I did, however, succeed in coming by one particular document,

23 which was compiled by my deputy, General Jovan Divjak, and which was

24 addressed to the command of the 2nd Corps and the command of Naser Oric in

25 Srebrenica. The document was compiled on the 20th of April, 1993, which

Page 9447

1 testifies to the fact that it was after the agreement of the 17th of

2 April, after the signing of the agreement. Negotiations continued, but at

3 a lower level, not at the level of commanders.

4 General Divjak writes in that document as follows:

5 "I inform you that in the negotiations on the demilitarisation of

6 Srebrenica held on the 19th of April, 1993, no significant steps forward

7 were taken, no significant progress was made. We concretised the fact

8 that the aggressor side outside the contents of the already signed

9 agreement on the demilitarisation of the town of Srebrenica insists that

10 all units on defence lines surrender their weapons, thereby, according to

11 their consents, the area be demilitarised, which is marked by the

12 delineation line."

13 I don't want to read the whole text, but let me, if I may, just

14 read one more paragraph from that text:

15 "UNPROFOR understands by the term 'demilitarisation' - and our

16 side completely agrees with that interpretation - the complete

17 demilitarisation of Srebrenica, and there would be no armed persons except

18 the civilian police and a small section around Srebrenica which can be

19 seen with the naked eye."

20 General Divjak goes on to explain that in Srebrenica there should

21 be no armed persons, soldiers, or reserve policemen, and states that they

22 should be pulled out of the town and that the defence lines should be

23 strengthened. He takes note that we have the absolute support of General

24 Morillon and General Wahlgren, and in one particular sentence he says, and

25 I quote: "Mladic has signed an agreement of that kind, and it is his

Page 9448

1 problem that he doesn't know what it means."

2 Therefore, after the agreement was signed of the 17th of April,

3 paramilitary formations of Bosnian Serbs and aggressors from Serbia and

4 Montenegro did not adhere to the provisions of the signed agreement.

5 After the entry of the Canadian Battalion into Srebrenica, the intensity

6 of combat activity fell off. There was less combat action, but there was

7 sporadic shelling and shooting in the town, at the town, from the

8 surrounding hills. The town was targeted from the surrounding hills.

9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, I apologise for

10 interrupting, but perhaps we could go more quickly to what we're

11 interested in. Do you have an idea of what was done to proceed to actual

12 demilitarisation following the agreement? What steps were taken towards

13 demilitarisation following the agreement signed?

14 A. After the agreement, in Srebrenica, in this way, we lost seven to

15 eight additional villages. It is true that the evacuation of the wounded

16 began and that all armed units began to withdraw from the town, as was

17 provided for by the agreement, and that humanitarian aid began to enter

18 the town.

19 On the 4th and 5th of May, there was an all-out attack on Zepa and

20 combat went on until the 7th or 8th of May. After that, we were to meet

21 again at the airport, or more exactly, this meeting took place on the 7th

22 of May. The negotiation went on throughout the night but yielded no

23 results.

24 Mladic asked that all the weapons be handed over to him. General

25 Morillon insisted that the weapons be surrendered to him, or rather, to

Page 9449

1 UNPROFOR, and we ourselves asked that the area of the urban -- the urban

2 area of Srebrenica be demilitarised and that the units be pulled out of

3 the urban area, because Srebrenica and Zepa had already been proclaimed

4 safe areas.

5 On the 8th of May, sometime after midnight - more exactly, around

6 2.00 a.m. - an agreement was signed on the demilitarisation of Srebrenica

7 and Zepa, and in the spirit of the negotiations and in the spirit of the

8 agreement that we signed, I informed the command of the 1st and 2nd Corps

9 and, of course, the command of the defence of Srebrenica.

10 The agreement envisaged the withdrawal of the infantry units one

11 and a half kilometres away from the confrontation line, line of contact,

12 which the forces of the Bosnian Serbs never did. The agreement also

13 provided for the withdrawal of artillery and mechanised units of the

14 aggressor, all of them, to certain regions, and that they be placed under

15 the control of UNPROFOR. That too was never respected.

16 The entry of UNPROFOR units into Zepa, the evacuation of the

17 wounded from Zepa was implemented, did take place, and it was said that

18 our units, when leaving the urban area of Srebrenica and Zepa, would

19 evacuate with them overall combat, materiel, and all other equipment and

20 materiel. In the order compiled by our General Staff, it was provided

21 that the units pull out of the urban area of Srebrenica and Zepa, of

22 course with all their weaponry, and that what they were not able to pull

23 out be placed under UNPROFOR control.

24 This agreement, for our part, was complied with to the letter, and

25 after that, from July, that is to say, from May 1993 onwards up until July

Page 9450

1 1995 --

2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General Halilovic, perhaps we

3 could focus a little more closely on June 1995. I think that you

4 mentioned a whole series of sabotage operations by the BH army and, in

5 particular, an operation on the 20th of June, 1995. Do you know who

6 ordered the operation, who issued the orders for that operation, what it

7 consisted of, and what the objectives were, what its targets were? This

8 could perhaps bring us -- throw more light on the fall of Srebrenica

9 itself, give us a better insight into that.

10 A. When we speak of the mistakes made by the Bosnia-Herzegovina

11 republic, its political and military leaders, I'm thinking first and

12 foremost of the fact that they should have liberated -- planned the

13 liberation of Podrinje first, that operation, and only later the other

14 one, Sarajevo one. If they wanted to deblock Sarajevo, measures should

15 have been taken to strengthen the Defence of Srebrenica and Zepa, which,

16 of course, was not resorted to.

17 Secondly, in the spring of 1995, 18 key officers who had command

18 posts at Srebrenica and Zepa were pulled out in order to be trained in

19 Zenica. It would have been logical that at least the 18 officers from the

20 free territory had been sent from Srebrenica to Zepa to train them and to

21 fortify them, to reinforce.

22 Thirdly, an order reached me signed by the Chief of Staff, the

23 representative of the command of the 28th Division in Srebrenica, on

24 diversionary activity during the time of the Sarajevo operation. That

25 order was written on the 20th of June, 1995, and it was signed by the

Page 9451

1 representative of the command of the 28th Division, Major Ramiz Becirevic.

2 Fourth, in view of the fact that we knew what the opposite side

3 was intending, what their strategic interest was in this area, in the

4 Podrinje area, a lot more should have been done towards capacitating and

5 arming the units themselves in Srebrenica and Zepa for a possible defence.

6 And point number five - although there were more reasons, one

7 could have more than five - when the attack on Srebrenica and Zepa took

8 place in July 1995, in my opinion, the Sarajevo operation should have been

9 stopped and all units who were free and capable should have been sent to

10 Srebrenica and Zepa to help the areas that were in jeopardy.

11 And point number six, when the units passed through Srebrenica and

12 Zepa towards free territory of Tuzla and Kladanj, nothing was done to help

13 them, to come to their assistance; that is to say, what was done was

14 negligible, insufficient.

15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, I apologise once again

16 for interrupting, but could you explain to us what the strategic interest

17 was or military -- particularly military interest as regards Srebrenica

18 for the Bosnia-Herzegovina army forces and the VRS army forces? What were

19 their strategic interests?

20 A. The strategic goal of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina was defined

21 by the constitution of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the platform taken by the

22 presidency on wartime circumstances which was enacted on the 1st of June,

23 1992, therefore, a free Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina as a state of equal

24 peoples of the Bosniaks, Bosnian Serbs, Bosnian Croats, and all other

25 peoples living in that territory. And of course, our strategic goal was

Page 9452

1 to have a free, liberated Podrinje.

2 The strategic goal of the Bosnian Serbs was defined by their own

3 decision, a decision taken by their assembly, which was to have ethnically

4 cleansed the valley of the Drina, and as it says, to do away with the

5 Drina as being a centuries-old border between Serb states, which means

6 that our two sides were on opposite sides in the Drina valley.

7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, to move on to the

8 attack on Srebrenica, do you have an idea when the Bosniak authorities,

9 civilian or military, learnt of the attack on the Srebrenica enclave by

10 the Serb forces, and in particular, when were they informed of the

11 transfer of the population, the capture, and then the execution of members

12 of the column and so on and so forth? When did they learn of this? And

13 the BH army forces, did they have military materiel and manpower to

14 prevent the attack or to launch a counter-attack?

15 Could you develop your ideas along those lines, please. May we

16 have your opinion on that area? What is your information on that subject?

17 A. In the Dani magazine published in 1998 as a special edition, Dani

18 magazine, under the title of "How They Sold Out Srebrenica and Retained

19 Power," this was an article written by Mr. Hecimovic, a journalist, he

20 quotes a series of testimonies from the meeting of the SDA Main Board in

21 Zenica, and he quotes the speech on that occasion made by the

22 then-commander Rasim Delic, who, in his 20-minute-long presentation,

23 devoted several minutes to the Srebrenica situation. The meeting of the

24 Main Board of the SDA party in Zenica, and the fall of the enclave of

25 Srebrenica, occurred on the same day; it coincided. He just informed them

Page 9453












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French

13 and English transcripts.













Page 9454

1 at the meeting that NATO planes, two planes were active over Srebrenica,

2 and says nothing more on the subject.

3 Hecimovic at that time was a journalist and he was a close

4 collaborator of the prime minister, Mr. Haris Silajdzic, prime minister of

5 Bosnia-Herzegovina, therefore, he was in a position to know at firsthand

6 what was happening there.

7 I later learnt that the command of the 2nd Corps and the General

8 Staff knew when the operation on Srebrenica started, but from a series of

9 testimonies, the people who were in Srebrenica, both from military and

10 political structures, we can clearly see that they asked for help, both of

11 the command of the 2nd Corps and the command of the General Staff and

12 President Izetbegovic, but that they did not receive that assistance.

13 To answer your question whether they had the power and materiel to

14 help, to come to the help of Srebrenica, I think that they did. First of

15 all, what was needed was, before the Sarajevo operation, to ensure

16 Srebrenica and Zepa, to protect it, and they had enough manpower and

17 enough materiel to do so - that is my opinion - and not to unleash the

18 Sarajevo operation and to leave Srebrenica and Zepa to fend for

19 themselves.

20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, General. Perhaps we could

21 now move on more specifically to the column, the issue of the column. In

22 general terms, what information do you dispose of with respect to the

23 column, the formation of the column, the evolution of the column, and

24 everything else with respect to the column, how it was pierced?

25 A. From what I learnt talking to people who were in the enclave, that

Page 9455

1 is to say, in Srebrenica, but also from the discussions I had with members

2 of the General Staff, I learnt that, in fact, the General Staff and the

3 presidency did not have any information as to the direction taken by the

4 column from Srebrenica. They reported back once but did not communicate

5 after that, so that in practical terms, the first information as to the

6 direction of the column, whether it was moving towards Zepa or Kladanj or

7 Tuzla, reached them only when the first parts of the column began to

8 appear along the Tuzla axis, which means that along that route of horror

9 from Srebrenica to Tuzla, they were not assisted in any way. No aid was

10 provided.

11 And as to the movement of the column itself and the terrible

12 sufferings that they went through, there are many testimonies to this

13 ordeal, and they can be ranked amongst the greatest horror experiences

14 imaginable.

15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, do you have any

16 information as to the time when the Bosnian authorities learnt about the

17 capture of one portion of the column and how those authorities actually

18 learnt about the executions and the disappearance of a number of members

19 of that column? When was it that they learnt about it, and how did they

20 learn about it?

21 A. My knowledge about that is based on written documents, and I must

22 admit that I'm not quite sure as to their reliability.

23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Let me ask you one more question

24 about the column. Was there an operation conducted from the direction of

25 Tuzla at the same time? For example, did Naser Oric receive an order not

Page 9456

1 to go and search for the column? What was the view of the situation from

2 the perspective of Tuzla?

3 A. What Naser Oric told me about it, and what his associates who were

4 in the area of Tuzla at the time told me, was that he had requested help,

5 both from the General Staff and the Corps Command, that a passage be

6 opened through which the column could pass. But he also complained about

7 the lack of understanding on their part. He told me that finally, in the

8 end, he had managed to gather a group of people on his own - that group of

9 people was not very large, maybe 50 members only - and that he had

10 attempted to pierce the corridor at one spot and open up a passage which

11 should have been used by the column. When he spoke about that, he and his

12 associates, they were very angry and resigned. So my knowledge about that

13 particular aspect of the situation is based on their experience and not on

14 my personal knowledge.

15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you, General. I think

16 that we already have enough information at this point, so we could perhaps

17 have a break now. After the break, the parties will have some questions

18 for you, and after their questions, the Judges might also have questions

19 for you.

20 Let me ask the usher to accompany General Halilovic out of the

21 courtroom first.

22 We will have a 20-minute break.

23 --- Recess taken at 10.33 a.m.

24 --- On resuming at 10.55 a.m.

25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So, Mr. Harmon, 50 minutes,

Page 9457

1 approximately, for your questions. Your witness.

2 MR. HARMON: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours. Good

3 morning, counsel. Good morning, General. Mr. President, we have no

4 questions of the witness. Thank you.

5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, then.

6 Mr. Petrusic.

7 Examined by Mr. Petrusic:

8 Q. Good morning, General. My name is Nenad Petrusic and I am

9 defending General Krstic in this case. I have a few questions for you.

10 Let me begin with the end of your narrative.

11 You told us that it was through the conversations with Mr. Oric

12 that you learnt about the fact that there was no communication, no

13 contact, and that it was because of that that no adequate assistance was

14 ever provided to the units which had attempted to break through from the

15 direction of Srebrenica towards Kladanj.

16 General, I would like to know whether you know Sead Delic, General

17 Delic.

18 A. I know General Delic by sight. We never had an opportunity to

19 talk, so I only know him by sight.

20 Q. He was a General with the BH army, was he not, in 1995?

21 A. Yes, that's correct.

22 Q. General, General Sead Delic, I assume because he was an active,

23 high-ranking officer of the BH army in 1995 - unlike yourself who at the

24 time was no longer in any command function with the BH army, if I

25 understand you correctly - was informed about the events which were taking

Page 9458

1 place at the front line. Is that correct?

2 A. Mr. Petrusic, I don't know whether it was on purpose or

3 accidentally, but you have reversed the things in your allegation just

4 now. I stated that I had talks with some members of the General Staff of

5 the BH army, and that in those conversations, they had told me that there

6 had been no contact with them and that they were not informed of the

7 direction which the column had taken; whereas Naser Oric told me that he

8 had requested assistance from the General Staff and the commander of the

9 2nd Corps, General Delic, that is, that they give him the units with which

10 he could open up a passage for the column to pull out.

11 Q. General, would you agree with me that General Delic was informed

12 about the events taking place at the front line in July 1995?

13 A. From what I know - and the basis of my knowledge are various

14 sources, including magazines and a number of statements - one can conclude

15 that General Sead Delic had been informed about the events taking place at

16 the front line up until the moment when the column decided to attempt a

17 breakthrough.

18 Q. General, General Sead Delic in an interview which he gave to the

19 Dani magazine on the 17th of March, 2000, in response to a question put to

20 him by a journalist to the effect that there were two rumours circulating

21 amongst the population from Srebrenica, first of all, that after the fall

22 of Srebrenica, Oric broke through the lines of Serb forces with a number

23 of volunteers, and second story, that he had refused, cowardly so, to

24 attempt that breakthrough, General Sead Delic answered to that question

25 "neither of both." He went on to state that it was on the 13th of July

Page 9459

1 that Oric received an order to take a number of soldiers and officers and

2 launch combat activities in the area of Medzedza.

3 General, you would agree with me that Medzedza is in the area of

4 the breakthrough line of the 28th Division in the direction of Kladanj.

5 Is that correct, General?

6 A. You must admit that from General Delic's statement --

7 Q. Excuse me, General, excuse me for a second. Would you please

8 answer my question, that is, is Medzedza in the area of the breakthrough

9 of the 28th Division in the direction of Kladanj? Could you simply answer

10 yes or no.

11 A. I think that the first part of your question is far more

12 important, but I will answer the second part as well.

13 Q. General, would you please answer my question.

14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Harmon.

15 MR. HARMON: Mr. President, I have a copy of the article that's

16 being referred to by my colleague and about which questions are being

17 directed to General Halilovic. Perhaps General Halilovic could be shown

18 the article that is the subject of these questions, and he would be better

19 prepared to answer the questions of my colleague.

20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I think we should perhaps wait

21 for the question and then the answer of the witness. General Halilovic is

22 probably familiar with the article. If he needs it, on the other hand, I

23 think that Mr. Petrusic can provide him with a copy of the article, if the

24 General wishes to have a copy in front of him. But thanks for your

25 intervention, Mr. Harmon.

Page 9460

1 Mr. Petrusic, could you perhaps ask your question once again, and

2 if necessary, could you give the article to the General, please.

3 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]

4 Q. General, would you first of all answer my question, that is, is

5 Medzedza in the area of the breakthrough of the 28th Division which was

6 moving from the direction of Srebrenica towards Kladanj?

7 A. I will answer your question; however, with your permission, I

8 should like to comment on the statement which was given by Mr. Sead

9 Delic.

10 Q. General --

11 A. Because you phrased it that way, I think that that portion of your

12 question was more important than the exact location of Medzedza. The

13 question to which Sead Delic responded is far more significant, and your

14 question is a formal one and meaningless.

15 Q. General, it is not up to you to assess the significance of the

16 question. Thank you very much for your opinion, but I insist on my

17 question. Can I please have your answer.

18 A. General Sead Delic merely confirmed what Naser Oric had said, that

19 a number of soldiers and officers had received an order to that effect,

20 and you must admit that such an order cannot be carried out by that number

21 of soldiers and officers.

22 Q. General, you stated that there was no knowledge about the

23 direction which the column had taken in its breakthrough and that nobody

24 knew where they would attempt a breakthrough. Is that correct, General?

25 A. Counsel, I told you what I had heard from the members of the

Page 9461

1 General Staff who held very high positions within the Main Staff of the BH

2 army. They claim that that was correct, that they were not informed of

3 the direction of the moving of the 28th Division up until the moment when

4 they actually appeared in the free territory.

5 Q. General Sead Delic goes on in his interview and he states as

6 follows: "They left in the afternoon hours and then they attempted to

7 establish the contact with the elements of the 28th Division which moved

8 in the direction of Tuzla. A soldier had passed through the area two days

9 ago and came to Kalesija, in the area of the Kalesija, and we concluded

10 from his story that that was also the possible line of their movement."

11 Does that mean, General, that the command of the 2nd Corps was

12 familiar with the direction of the breakthrough of the 28th Division, if,

13 as early as the 11th of July, they had the particular piece of information

14 at their disposal?

15 A. If you should read the answer of General Delic once again, and

16 carefully so, you will realise that he too says at one point that it was

17 their conclusion that it would be possible, and so on and so forth. So he

18 himself was not sure as to the direction of the movement of the column.

19 It was merely his assumption, and he said that it would be possible. So

20 from his answer, we can see that the statements given by the people who

21 held very high positions within the General Staff of the BH army are

22 confirmed, that is, that it was merely their assumption but that they were

23 not sure as to the exact direction of the movement of the column.

24 Q. General Sead Delic goes on and states in his interview that:

25 "The front line, which was two kilometres long, was pierced by

Page 9462

1 the units from Srebrenik [as interpreted]. The 11th Brigade and the 241st

2 and the 242st and 43rd Brigades also took part in the breakthrough. Those

3 units were in the strength of a company. I personally went, together with

4 Senahid Hodzic, the commander of the 281st Brigade there. He was the only

5 commanding officer at the time who managed to reach the area of Baljkovica

6 and crossed over to the other side."

7 Does this mean, General, this statement of General Sead Delic,

8 that the units of the 2nd Corps had participated in the breakthrough and

9 the pull-out of the troops of the 28th Division from encirclement?

10 A. General Delic himself confirms the fact that from these three

11 brigades you have just mentioned, only portions in the strength of a

12 company were engaged; that is, only certain elements were there. So this

13 statement is the confirmation of what Oric told me, that is, that those

14 units were not very strong ones and that without appropriate artillery and

15 other support were unable to conduct such a complex assignment.

16 Q. General, immediately prior to the attack on Srebrenica, and also

17 throughout 1995, that is, not earlier than 1995, were any diversionary and

18 terrorist units, sabotage units, organised in that area, according to your

19 knowledge? Were they active in that area?

20 A. As regards the structure and the organisation of our units, I

21 think that you are quite knowledgeable about that. You know that there

22 are sabotage units within each brigade, so there were such units, sabotage

23 units, throughout BH army brigades. There is nothing in dispute about

24 that.

25 Q. Is it your knowledge, General, that those sabotage and terrorist

Page 9463

1 units made incursions into the territory which was outside the enclave of

2 Srebrenica, that is, outside the borders of the safe area?

3 A. As regards one order which I had access to -- that is, I have

4 already spoken about one such order that I had at my disposal. As to

5 whether there were several such orders, I don't have any information about

6 that. But I do know that throughout that period of time, that is, from

7 the 8th of May, 1993, up until the fall of the enclave, practically

8 speaking, that is, until the month of July, 1995, there were several

9 attacks by paramilitary forces of Bosnian Serbs. You can learn about that

10 if you read the special report of the Secretary-General of the United

11 Nations, which I hope you have. If you do not, I can provide it to you.

12 Q. You spoke about the attacks of paramilitary forces. Are you

13 referring to the Bosnian Serb army?

14 A. Yes, I am. I've been using the term which was used in United

15 Nations resolutions, Resolution 819 and several other relevant resolutions

16 issued by the Security Council of the United Nations. They used the term,

17 and I think it would be only fair enough for me to use that particular

18 term and not any other.

19 Q. General, it is not my intention to enter into a debate with you,

20 but do you happen to know what term was used in the report of the

21 Secretary-General of the United Nations, if we are speaking about -- since

22 you have mentioned international organisations yourself?

23 A. All institutions belonging to the International Community refer to

24 the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina as the army of the Republic of Bosnia

25 and Herzegovina. There was some mistakes made from time to time, but that

Page 9464

1 is not important. What is important was the fact that it was a legal army

2 of the internationally recognised state of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

3 Q. I only wanted to say that in the report made by Kofi Annan, the

4 "VRS" term is also used, the army of Bosnian Serbs, that is.

5 A. Well, we can always check that.

6 Q. General, as a high-ranking officer of the former JNA and the BH

7 army, do you think that any conduct of terrorist activities in spring of

8 that year, that is, terrorist activities from the enclave, from the

9 protected area and into the Serbian-held territory, against Serbian-held

10 positions, was something that could trigger offensive action by the VRS

11 towards the area of the enclave, towards the safe area?

12 A. If there had indeed been terrorist activities from the enclave, I

13 consider it to be a mistake. Would you please allow me to finish the

14 question with one more sentence. I think this is an essential issue.

15 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, the Defence is happy

16 with the answer of the witness, but it is really up to you whether you're

17 going to let him finish his answer.

18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General Halilovic, there will be

19 questions of the Judges later on. For the time being, you are here to

20 answer questions put to you by the Defence counsel, and it is really up to

21 them to decide what questions they want to ask of you. You now have to

22 answer, if you want to do so, the question that is put to you by the

23 Defence counsel, and later on, as I have indicated, there will be

24 questions of the Judges.

25 Mr. Petrusic, please continue.

Page 9465

1 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. General, you are one of the signatories of the agreement on

3 demilitarisation. I should like to know -- and of course, you are also

4 familiar with the rights and duties which during that period of time you

5 yourself and, later on, those who succeeded you on your functions, members

6 of the BH army, had to respect. Does that agreement envisage any

7 sanctions for either of the parties in case of non-compliance with the

8 agreement?

9 A. While I was still a member of the BH army, the agreement was

10 complied with in its entirety.

11 Q. General, do you have any knowledge whether in the spring and

12 summer of 1995 the said agreement was honoured and complied with?

13 A. Under the assumption that one single terrorist activity had been

14 conducted, then one was supposed to request that the Security Council of

15 the United Nations to withdraw the agreement concerning the safe area, and

16 one had to publicly state that the agreement was no longer binding and not

17 launch an attack which had horrible consequences.

18 Q. General, in those years, did you happen to know, and do you still

19 know, a prominent politician in Bosnia and Herzegovina, an individual by

20 the name of Rusomir Mahmut Cehajic?

21 A. Rusmir Mahmut Cehajic, is his name.

22 Q. I apologise, thank you.

23 A. Yes, I know him. At the time, he was vice-president of --

24 vice-premier, and now he's a researcher. He's a president of a scientific

25 association.

Page 9466

1 Q. Was he an influential politician in those years?

2 A. At the time he was a vice-prime minister, and he had adequate

3 influence, depending on his function.

4 Q. Did you, General, together with Naser Oric, have an opportunity to

5 talk to Mr. Mahmut Cehajic after the fall of Srebrenica?

6 A. Yes. We talked in the spring of 1996, and that conversation was

7 published by Oslobodenje Daily in the summer of 1996.

8 Q. General, the conversation which was published by Oslobodenje Daily

9 in four segments, in four installments in August 1996, was never

10 authorised. You never denied it, you never denied what you said during

11 that conversation?

12 A. There was no need to deny anything.

13 Q. In that conversation that the two of you had, Mr. Oric states, I

14 quote, "At any time of day and night from the very beginning of the war up

15 until June 1993, until the arrival of Delic, I had contact with commander

16 Sefer through radio line, radio communication. He was the only person who

17 knew exactly what was happening. And when the order on demilitarisation

18 of the town itself was issued, the commander explained to me that we

19 should hand over only non-functional and faulty weaponry, the ones that we

20 could not hide, heavy weapons, which is what I did. We remained deployed

21 along the lines and the weapons were still with us." Is that correct,

22 General?

23 A. The agreement on the demilitarisation of Srebrenica and Zepa

24 envisaged the demilitarisation of the urban areas of those two towns and

25 the pull-out of all personnel from the area. After I returned from the

Page 9467

1 airport on the 9th of May, I issued an order specifying that not a single

2 piece of weaponry and equipment should be handed over because we had some

3 very bad experience to that effect, that is, with very slow and

4 inefficient decisions by the International Community. So yes, you're

5 quite correct.

6 Q. Is it true that Mr. Oric stated on that occasion that all of the

7 weaponry which had been handed over was not usable and was faulty, and

8 that all other weapons, the ones that were functional, were still kept?

9 A. You just stated that Naser Oric had said that I was familiar with

10 everything that was happening, and that is quite true, but to the effect

11 it was possible to learn about the situation through radio communication.

12 According to a report sent to me by Naser Oric, old and dysfunctional

13 weapons had been handed over, and those who -- those that could still be

14 used were kept, and that is correct.

15 Q. In that conversation, General, you say that you had ordered that

16 only the useless weapons should be surrendered. Is that correct?

17 A. According to the agreement on the demilitarisation of the urban

18 area of Srebrenica and Zepa, we were not obliged to surrender anything.

19 But it is true that I had ordered, if they had to surrender something,

20 that they should surrender what was faulty.

21 Q. General, in your book "Failed Strategy" published in 1998, you

22 also say, I quote, "I returned to headquarters and issued an order to

23 Srebrenica and Zepa that not a single functional piece of weaponry should

24 be handed over or a single usable bullet. After that, I went to see

25 Izetbegovic and was given congratulations for success."

Page 9468

1 General, you're talking about the urban area; however, clearly

2 your order did not apply to the urban area regarding the surrender of

3 equipment and weaponry.

4 A. You must distinguish between the safe area and the demilitarised

5 zone. According to the agreement, the demilitarised zone covers the urban

6 area of Srebrenica and Zepa and what can be seen from the town itself, and

7 within that zone, no armed personnel or military equipment were permitted.

8 Therefore, my order was to pull out from that area, pursuant to the

9 agreement, all armed personnel and military equipment and, of course, to

10 preserve and retain those weapons that we could use should we launch an

11 attack, if that should prove necessary.

12 Q. General, you are familiar with the decision of the United Nations

13 which had a no-fly zone envisaged.

14 A. Yes, yes, certainly.

15 Q. Pursuant to that decision, were military and civilian aircraft

16 prohibited from flying over from one territory to another, that is,

17 specifically from Tuzla to Srebrenica and Zepa? My question is, were

18 flights prohibited?

19 A. Yes, flights were prohibited for military purposes, but units of

20 the air force of the Yugoslav army - I'm referring to airplanes and

21 helicopters - were used during the attack on Srebrenica and Zepa from

22 January 1993 until May 1993. And testifying to this was General Morillon

23 - I think he wrote about it - who personally witnessed the takeoff of

24 aircraft from the Ponikve strip. It was medical material that was

25 transported more than combat equipment.

Page 9469

1 Q. Yes, but such flights were in violation of the United Nations'

2 decision, whether it was partial violation or total, but in any event, it

3 was in violation of that agreement. Would you agree?

4 A. Obviously not, because the opposite side -- I don't want to have a

5 dispute with you regarding the term, used airplanes and helicopters.

6 Q. General, I'm not asking you about the opposing side. I'm talking

7 to you about aircraft of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina or aircraft of the

8 civilian authorities of Bosnia-Herzegovina without the approval of the

9 United Nations. Was that a violation of the resolution?

10 A. Partially yes, because we were transported -- transporting food

11 and medicaments mostly, but partially, yes.

12 Q. Is it a violation if ammunition were transported by means of those

13 aircraft and helicopters? Will you answer that question, please, with a

14 yes or no.

15 A. In view of the fact that we were under an embargo and our hands

16 were tied, I think not. Morally, no; legally, one could discuss it.

17 Q. Naser Oric, General, says in this newspaper Oslobodenje, an

18 interview that you attended as did Mr. Mahmut Cehajic, that Sefer sent six

19 helicopters with ammunition. Is that correct, General?

20 A. It is not correct. It is correct that I sent eight helicopters

21 with ammunition, and if I could have, I would have sent 180.

22 Q. General, you were violating the provisions of the United Nations

23 resolution.

24 A. The legal norms of the United Nations also guarantee the right to

25 defence.

Page 9470

1 Q. General, in view of the fact that you sent eight helicopters

2 within a short span of time to Srebrenica, was there sufficient weaponry

3 and ammunition in Srebrenica at the time?

4 A. Unfortunately, no. If there had been, the combat operations would

5 have evolved differently in Eastern Bosnia.

6 Q. Could you explain the need for weapons and ammunitions of the 28th

7 Division in Srebrenica, if UNPROFOR forces were present and constituted a

8 buffer zone between the Serb and Muslim sides?

9 A. So as not to misinform the Trial Chamber, I'm talking about eight

10 helicopters in the period from January to May 1993. The UN proclaimed the

11 safe areas, but they never had sufficient forces and resources to secure

12 them. Sarajevo too was a safe area, and 1.600 people were killed and more

13 than a million shells fell on the city.

14 Q. General, on that occasion, did Naser Oric tell you upon whose

15 orders, in the last decade, of April 1995 he and a number of other senior

16 officers left Srebrenica?

17 A. He told me that he left Srebrenica upon orders of the Chief of

18 Staff of the General Staff. In those days, I think it was Enver

19 Hadzihasanovic. And I think he will be here in the courtroom after me,

20 and then you can ask him that question.

21 Q. Thank you. General, do you have any knowledge, during the time of

22 the attack on Srebrenica, how the 28th Division was structured? Let me

23 withdraw that question. Perhaps General Hadzihasanovic can tell us more

24 about that.

25 A. I could tell you, but I think he is more qualified to give you an

Page 9471

1 answer.

2 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, excuse me, but do I

3 have also 50 minutes, so that I can organise myself within that time

4 frame? In the event that I may take a few minutes longer, will you please

5 caution me?

6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] If you should overstep 50

7 minutes, there will be no punishment for you. If you do need more time,

8 please do so. We'll allow it.

9 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Not much, I hope. Thank you.

10 Q. General, you mentioned the 15th of June as the day when the

11 deblocking or the offensive operations to deblock Sarajevo was embarked

12 upon?

13 A. In those days, there were a large number of orders for sabotage

14 operations from the safe areas.

15 Q. As a high-ranking officer of the former Yugoslav People's Army and

16 of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina who is familiar with the doctrine and

17 strategy and rules, that that was intended to draw away forces from one

18 battlefront to another [as interpreted]?

19 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel speak into the microphone,

20 please.

21 A. If there were any such orders, then you should have used them to

22 ask the United Nations to nullify the resolution on safe areas. I think

23 that would have been the proper course for you to take, rather than doing

24 what you did in Srebrenica.

25 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]

Page 9472

1 Q. General, do you have any knowledge that your army or political

2 leadership or Supreme Command asked for the abolition of the safe areas,

3 in view of what you have just said?

4 A. I have no such knowledge whether any such requests were made. I

5 don't know.

6 Q. General, do you have any knowledge regarding the fact that the

7 28th Division had a plan of attack on members of UNPROFOR and their

8 equipment? Of course, that was a period when you were not the commander

9 of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the period of 1994, 1995.

10 A. I read about some such plans in the press, but the testimony of

11 Enver Hadzihasanovic will be more appropriate in that context, as he was

12 Chief of Staff at the time.

13 Q. General, I will put a question to you, a hypothetical. If one

14 party to a conflict, regardless of which party that may be, attacks

15 another and violates certain norms and agreements, is it the legitimate

16 right of the other party to retaliate and respond? General, this is a

17 hypothetical question and it doesn't apply to Srebrenica or any other

18 specific situation.

19 General, I'm -- it was the side that you are representing that

20 violated the provisions of the assigned agreement.

21 General, this is a hypothetical question and you obviously don't

22 want to answer it.

23 A. In that case, the opposite side should observe the norms.

24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Excuse me. If you overlap, it

25 is simply not possible to translate what you are saying. You have to

Page 9473

1 speak one after the other, with pauses in between.

2 And General Halilovic, answer, please, Mr. Petrusic's question.

3 Please continue, Mr. Petrusic.

4 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. General, I'm waiting for your answer.

6 A. You're asking me a question without allowing me to answer it. So

7 hypothetically -- your question is a hypothetical one, and yet you know

8 that the units of the opposite side violated the agreement all the time.

9 And if units of the army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina acted in

10 violation of the agreement, then the lawful procedure would be to ask for

11 the abolition of the decision of a safe area, to withdraw your signature

12 from the agreements, and then you would have the legitimate right to

13 respond; until then, no.

14 Q. General, did the other side too in this case -- I withdraw that

15 question.

16 General, do you know Hakija Meholjic? Have you heard of him?

17 A. I met him in 1999 or 2000 perhaps, after having read some of his

18 statements in the press.

19 Q. General, he was chief of police in Srebrenica in 1995, or rather,

20 in the period of the safe area until the end of the war. Is that so, for

21 the record?

22 A. As far as I know, yes.

23 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] I should now like to ask the

24 technical booth to play a short video film of some 10 minutes. It is a

25 video film made by Dutch television, after which I will have a few

Page 9474












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French

13 and English transcripts.













Page 9475

1 questions for the General, General Halilovic. My colleague is correcting

2 me. It will take 12 minutes.

3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I think that we need an

4 interpreter to interpret from the Dutch into English; right?

5 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President. In the break I

6 spoke to the technical booth, and they have provided a translation so that

7 the Chamber and the parties can follow the film, and not just the witness

8 and the Defence, as there is a translation in the Serbian and in Dutch.

9 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters don't have anything.

10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please.

11 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]

12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I think, Mr. Petrusic, that we

13 only have a Dutch version, so we need interpretation. Do you have a B/C/S

14 version?

15 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Do you mean a transcript?

16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] No. Of the video.

17 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] The video is in three languages,

18 depending on who is speaking. When they're speaking Bosnian,

19 representatives of the Bosnian authorities, they use their own language,

20 of course; when a journalist is speaking, who is filming, he speaks his

21 language, which is Dutch; and then in a couple of shots we have the

22 English subtitles too. So I think we can look at the video and then,

23 through the questions, clear up anything that may not be clear.

24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well. Let us try, but I

25 see that General Halilovic has something to say.

Page 9476

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I understood Mr. Petrusic

2 correctly, the event has to do with 1995, and I think General

3 Hadzihasanovic's opinion would be more relevant, in view of his position

4 in the army at the time, and I fear that we may be wasting time for no

5 purpose, in the meantime.

6 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, we will not be

7 wasting time, because there is a statement by General Hadzihasanovic on

8 that tape - no, I'm sorry - General Halilovic on the video, so I do

9 consider it relevant.

10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Please let us see the video

11 clip.

12 [Videotape played]

13 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] We have no sound, to the

14 technical booth.

15 Yes, Mr. Harmon.

16 MR. HARMON: Mr. President, from the little bit I've seen - not

17 heard, of course, but seen - it appears there's Dutch subtitles, and the

18 Prosecution bench doesn't have a Dutch speaker or a B/C/S speaker, and so

19 we are unable to understand, essentially, what may be a significant part

20 of this film. If this film has been available for a considerable period

21 of time, it seems to me the transcripts should have been prepared on this

22 film and made available to us; otherwise we're sitting here like people in

23 a movie theatre watching a foreign film, and it is meaningless to us.

24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I was proceeding from the

25 principle that we did need an interpreter from the Dutch into another

Page 9477

1 language, but if the footage was in B/C/S, it would be possible to

2 translate, I thought. But there is an interpreter, Thomas Henquet, I

3 understand, to do the translation. Do you have a microphone, Thomas?

4 MR. FOURMY: [Interpretation], Mr. President, it's a technical

5 matter. The video is in three languages, Dutch, English, and B/C/S.

6 Mr. Henquet reviewed the tape yesterday, and if the Chamber so wishes, he

7 is ready to interpret it simultaneously, though he is not a professional

8 interpreter. He's ready to interpret the parts that are in Dutch.

9 There is no transcript today of that footage. That cassette was

10 tendered by the Defence. It was shown by Dutch television for the first

11 time in March 2001, and it was tendered to registry on the 21st of March

12 this year, so there was no time to prepare a transcript in the three

13 official languages of the Tribunal because speakers use different

14 languages in the footage.

15 If you so wish and if necessary, Mr. Henquet may take a solemn

16 declaration. He can go to the English booth, and with the assistance of

17 the technical booth, you would be able to view this video and thus obtain

18 a French or English or B/C/S version as you may require. Thank you.

19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Harmon, what do you say to

20 this suggestion? Is it acceptable?

21 MR. HARMON: Yes, it is, Mr. President.

22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] And you, Mr. Petrusic?

23 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President.

24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, then. I'm addressing

25 myself to Mr. Thomas Henquet. Could you please get up. Stand up, please.

Page 9478

1 Do you take upon yourself to accomplish this task with loyalty,

2 independence, and impartiality, and in full respect of your duty to

3 preserve confidentiality?

4 MR. HENQUET: Yes, I do.

5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Henquet has answered with a

6 "yes, I do." I'm saying this because he didn't have a microphone so the

7 interpreters were unable to interpret.

8 Mr. Thomas, please go to the English booth. [In English] Are you

9 ready to start?

10 THE INTERPRETER: Yes, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Yes, okay. So from the technical booth, are you

12 ready? Okay, let's go.

13 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "Alija was telling us about the offer

14 of Clinton. Chetniks would take Srebrenica and kill 5.000 Muslims, and

15 there will be a military intervention. What did we think about that? We

16 rejected that. We didn't think it was normal to have 5.000 people being

17 killed."

18 I can't hear the commentary, I'm sorry. I cannot hear the Dutch


20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Perhaps we need to start from

21 the beginning. The English booth tells us that they cannot hear the sound

22 of the commentary in Dutch, so they can't translate it.

23 I think perhaps it would be better to have a break. We've been

24 working for about an hour and ten minutes, so maybe we should have a break

25 and then the technical booth can prepare everything so that things run

Page 9479

1 smoothly.

2 So General Halilovic, we're going to have a short break.

3 Mr. Usher, a break. Twenty-minute break.

4 --- Break taken at 11.59 a.m.

5 --- On resuming at 12.30 p.m.

6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I think the interpreters and the

7 technical booth have invested a great deal of effort to adapt themselves

8 to a situation which is not usual, and therefore for people to be able to

9 follow the discussion, I am going to ask Mr. Olivier Fourmy to give us the

10 instructions that he has received from the technicians themselves.

11 MR. FOURMY: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. In effect,

12 when we are showing a videotape, the normal thing is to have a transcript

13 of what is on the tape so that the interpreters are able to interpret

14 precisely.

15 In this extraordinary situation, and we should like to apologise

16 on behalf of the registry, people wishing to listen in the B/C/S language

17 should listen to it on channel 6 and will have to focus their attention on

18 the headsets because it is technically not possible to delete the volume

19 of the cassette in the public gallery, so at times there will be an

20 overlapping of voices. You will hear the voice of the speaker in the

21 B/C/S, and as the interpretation will be done from the English, there

22 might be some overlapping. But as to what is said on the tape, I suggest

23 that you focus on the interpretation coming from the booths.

24 Thank you, Mr. President.

25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Does that mean, Mr. Fourmy, that

Page 9480

1 English will still be on channel 4 and French will continue to be on

2 channel 5?

3 MR. FOURMY: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President, that is correct.

4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. We shall

5 try. Let us have the videotape played now, please.

6 [Videotape played]

7 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "A meeting with American president

8 Clinton, Alija was telling us about the offer of Clinton. Chetniks would

9 take Srebrenica and kill 5.000 Muslims, and then there will be a military

10 intervention, and what did we think about that? And we rejected that. We

11 didn't think it was normal that 5.000 people would be slaughtered.

12 That the American president would have suggested that Serbs would

13 enter Srebrenica and to kill Muslims in order to justify an intervention

14 would be too absurd, but from the UN research, it now seems that this is

15 not too awkward. Some surviving members of the Srebrenica delegation have

16 stated that President Izetbegovic also told them that he had learned that

17 a NATO intervention in Bosnia-Herzegovina was possible but could only

18 occur if the Serbs which would break into Srebrenica are killing at least

19 5.000 of its people. President Izetbegovic was heard by UN investigators

20 and denies having made those statements, but he admits having accepted an

21 opinion on the exchange of territories.

22 We talked about an exchange and the exchange of Srebrenica for

23 other territories.

24 UN report: The delegation opposed the idea and the subject was

25 not discussed further.

Page 9481

1 In negotiations we will demand that the maps will be corrected in

2 the Bosnian parliament, that the Bosnian Republic will get Muslim

3 territory along the Drina. The delegation is -- imposed secrecy. The

4 exchange of territories is not -- it was not abolished. We agreed to meet

5 the next day. But after our meeting with Izetbegovic, people started to

6 be bribed. People were taken everywhere. Men came that I didn't know and

7 they made propositions. I've seen those men, but never again afterwards.

8 They spoke individually with us or in groups, sitting at a table. I was

9 sitting at a table together with Mehovic, and they asked us what we

10 thought about Srebrenica for Vogosca, exchanging for Srebrenica for

11 Vogosca, and Zepa for Ilijas. In case I would not accept the exchange, I

12 could be liquidated, so I returned with the delegation to Srebrenica.

13 General Halilovic was aware of the meeting between Izetbegovic and

14 the delegation. According to him, the president spoke also with other

15 representatives of Srebrenica. Izetbegovic offered to exchange Srebrenica

16 for Zepa, for neighbourhoods in Sarajevo, Vogosca, Ilijas and Ilidza. We

17 rejected that. Only half a year after Srebrenica was proclaimed a safe

18 area, it is the Muslim government that discusses the destiny of the Muslim

19 population in Srebrenica. Did Sarajevo sacrifice Srebrenica in 1993?

20 Answer: I think so, yes.

21 From these facts emerges that maintaining Srebrenica was not a

22 prime objective of the Muslim government.

23 Half a year later, the first Dutch blue helmets arrive at

24 Srebrenica. In spite of limited support in Dutch parliament, they are

25 tasked to defend the enclave. This is the Dutch minister for the

Page 9482

1 Defence:

2 We know that you are in a very difficult position here and that

3 you have to do a very difficult job here, and you're very important for

4 the future of these people. Lieutenant Colonel Broskij, acting commander

5 of DutchBat, is convinced the Dutch government did not know about

6 the -- but I did give up Srebrenica. I cannot imagine that the Dutch

7 government was aware of those plans, that is, to give up Srebrenica, that

8 those negotiations were going on. I'm really not -- I'm sure that we

9 didn't know that.

10 Interview of the Dutch Defence Ministry for [unintelligible]

11 Srebrenica. You see a lot of people who are really waiting for a future

12 that they don't know -- they don't know what the future will bring, and

13 you see that they realise that they are incredibly dependent upon DutchBat

14 and that DutchBat is really a life insurance for them. DutchBat is a life

15 insurance for them. The question is: Would the Dutch government have

16 sent DutchBat if they had known that the Muslims were considering the

17 secret proposal and maybe have accepted that? Broskij, acting commander

18 of DutchBat, says that this would have been decisive. This is Broskij,

19 the acting commander:

20 Well, the situation would have been different for the Dutch

21 government in that case. I'm certain of that. And perhaps -- Question:

22 -- Answer: We would not have been sent in that case.

23 Early 1995, after a year of relative quiet, tensions increase in

24 the enclave. February, a year and a half after the issue of exchange of

25 territory was discussed -- they're talking about a discussion with Naser

Page 9483

1 Oric. The one general refuses to take Oric with him. Early April 1995

2 Oric would have managed to speak to Izetbegovic and to discuss his

3 presumptions. In the General Staff, according to this man, there was a

4 meeting between Oric and Izetbegovic.

5 I heard from Naser that those two were together in one room during

6 that night. Naser told me that himself. Everything indicates that Oric's

7 fears were confirmed. Oric is back from Kakanj, but then he leaves for

8 good from the enclave and he orders the deputy commander to come with

9 him. After that, he told me, I don't know the exact number, but he sent

10 about 20 officers away, known fighters who participated in heavy

11 fighting. They were trusted by the soldiers and by the people. Each of

12 them could easily gather a hundred people with them that were willing and

13 able to die, able to die. He sent them away to study, to follow an

14 education. Sources confirm that Oric left on his own initiative. The

15 soldiers spoke to Oric just before Oric left. He said he would come

16 back. He said that he would come back and arrange something for our

17 enclave.

18 The man who had been in the centre of attention for four years

19 left in silence. DutchBat and the UN left -- knew that Oric has been in

20 safety for three months only after the fall of Srebrenica.

21 Is this his biggest secret? Answer: Probably. His secret

22 and Izetbegovic's secret.

23 Dutch deputy commander: He was a very strong leader.

24 The people, he really -- he was a very strong force behind his

25 brigades, at the moment such a commander, at least, and case is complete.

Page 9484

1 People panicked, especially women, children, and elderly, so the weaker

2 groups. And the little bit of army that was left started to panic. We

3 saw that there was no more leadership, and we had obviously been

4 abandoned.

5 Around Srebrenica, Serbian troops started to pull together and

6 they started to regroup, restructure. June 1995, everything indicates

7 that the Serbs are preparing their final offensive. DutchBat is

8 preparing -- it's preparing itself. Then something strange happened.

9 Muslim soldiers leave the enclave and plunder the village of Visnjica just

10 behind the defence line. The order came from Sarajevo to change the

11 pressure on the front. In the meeting, I resisted. This could not happen

12 because this would cause problems. The village was very unimportant.

13 Still the order was given, and the guys in Srebrenica followed the order.

14 Why, for goodness' sake? Houses were burned. The attack was led by one

15 of Oric's former allies, former associates.

16 11th of July, 1995, Serbs take the enclave. The Muslims are

17 separated. Women and children are bused to safety. The men stay behind.

18 The remaining army, the remaining part of the army flees through the woods

19 to Tuzla. According to official estimates, 7.000 men were killed with

20 premeditation by Serbs. No one could prevent the fall of the enclave;

21 DutchBat, the UN, but also the Muslim -- the DutchBat Brigade, all the

22 Muslim forces. Everybody remained passive. Shortly after Srebrenica, the

23 enclave Zepa fell into Serb hands.

24 Meanwhile, around Sarajevo, another battle is going on. Suddenly

25 five Serb Ops fall into Muslim hands, therewith, the siege of Sarajevo

Page 9485

1 will soon end. This is the conclusion.

2 I still respect for Dudakovic and the 5th Army Corps, but in three

3 days, take five cities. Where was he all that time? I've been in war

4 myself, and I know what war is. Gorazde was awaiting the same fate as

5 us. Serbs killed more people than was planned. Definitely Gorazde,

6 otherwise Gorazde would have been the same fate as Srebrenica. The

7 International Community needed the genocide to stop this war."

8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, thank you.

9 Mr. Petrusic.

10 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.

11 Q. General, sir, you will agree that the man on this video clip

12 speaking about the alleged agreement of Alija Izetbegovic on the

13 liquidation of 5.000 Muslims was Hakija Meholjic; am I right in saying

14 that? For the record, you assert that it was Hakija Meholjic?

15 A. Yes, that's right. It was Hakija Meholjic.

16 Q. General, sir, Hakija Meholjic speaks about meetings that were held

17 in Sarajevo at the Holiday Inn there or at some other location, and you in

18 your book, "The Aborted Strategy," you yourself speak about that, and I

19 quote from page 131 of your book. You say as follows: "I was twice

20 present when Izetbegovic in Sarajevo in the early spring of 1993 offered

21 the representatives of Srebrenica and Zepa that this kind of exchange be

22 conducted, be made to: Srebrenica and Zepa for the environs of Sarajevo,

23 Vogosca, and Ilijas. The proposal after the consultation with the people

24 and with the fighters was resolutely rejected."

25 Was that so, General; that is to say, were you, in fact, present?

Page 9486

1 A. I was present in March and May 1993 when Izetbegovic talked to

2 Murat Efendic and Dr. Becim Hendic [phoen] and some other people from

3 Srebrenica and Zepa, and when they were offered this exchange, Srebrenica

4 and Zepa for the Sarajevo environs, and Mr. Hakija Meholjic spoke about

5 the talk with Izetbegovic and what they discussed about Srebrenica and

6 Zepa, that was in September 1993. So they are two different meetings, in

7 fact.

8 And when Izetbegovic talked to Meholjic and that delegation, and

9 the delegation which came from Srebrenica, in fact, I was not present on

10 that particular occasion, but I did attend the talks in the May, March

11 period, March to May period, 1993.

12 Q. What about the second meeting, September 1993? You were informed

13 about that through the media; is that right?

14 A. The September meeting, 1993, Hakija Meholjic I think spoke to the

15 journal Dani or Slobodna Bosna.

16 Q. Hakija Meholjic was a policeman, or rather, the chief of police in

17 Srebrenica, and he brings -- makes a connection between the leaving of

18 Srebrenica by the commander of the 8th Operative Group, Naser Oric, and

19 his 20-odd men, subordinate commanding officers. So he brings that fact,

20 he ties it in with the agreement which was offered in 1993 on two

21 occasions to the Muslim side.

22 Do you, from what he said, have the same conclusion to make?

23 A. I have already given my answer to your question at the beginning

24 of my testimony. I said that it was a tactical mistake that the

25 leadership, political and military, of Bosnia-Herzegovina made.

Page 9487

1 Q. General, sir, we are nearing the end, and as we do so, I should

2 like to quote a portion of your book, page 132, and I open quotations:

3 "The operation to deblock Sarajevo began on the 15th of June, 1995, and

4 the Chetniks entered Srebrenica on the 11th of July, 1995, with three

5 tanks, two transporters, APCs, and about 200 Chetniks. While the Chetniks

6 were entering Srebrenica, in Zenica the main council was meeting at the

7 Party of Democratic Action, the SDA party, and the security -- there was

8 more security there than was the occupation army in Srebrenica."

9 According to your knowledge, General, that is to say, was your

10 information directed towards this number of soldiers and the equipment

11 they had at Srebrenica?

12 A. What I say in my book, "A Sly Strategy," I based on my talk with

13 David Rhode and his book, "The End of the Game," published in 1997; and

14 also on a special edition of the Dani journal entitled "How They Gave Over

15 Srebrenica"; and also I base this on my discussions with other people,

16 talks to other people who were present in Srebrenica and Zenica, and I had

17 these talks in 1998.

18 Q. And finally, General, I'm going to quote one more sentence, page

19 134 of your book, and I quote: "According to an interview with Holbrooke,

20 Izetbegovic in January 1995 was ready to hand over Srebrenica to the Serbs

21 in the context of a broader solution of the peace question and in order to

22 retain Sarajevo intact. He said that they were not his, and he did not

23 care about that. Mark Dunner [phoen] recorded Holbrooke's statement on

24 that occasion."

25 When you say he did not care about that, that they were not his

Page 9488

1 people, do you mean "he" being Alija Izetbegovic? Is that the "he" you're

2 referring to?

3 A. It is not I who say that. I was quoting Mr. Holbrooke and

4 Mr. Dunner, so I was just quoting what they said.

5 Q. May we conclude that this refers to the then president of

6 Bosnia-Herzegovina, Alija Izetbegovic?

7 A. Here it states precisely that it refers to Mr. Izetbegovic, and

8 there is no need for us to deduce anything. It says so clearly.

9 Q. General, the Defence has no further questions for you. We have

10 completed our examination. Thank you for testifying.

11 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, that completes the

12 examination by the Defence. Thank you.

13 [Trial Chamber confers]

14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,

15 Mr. Petrusic. I think that the time has come for our lunch break, that

16 this would be an opportune moment to adjourn. It is customary to have two

17 breaks during the morning session, but we have allowed more time for the

18 technical difficulties that we had.

19 So could we now take a 45-minute break and reconvene after that.

20 But before we adjourn, I'm going to ask the usher to escort General

21 Halilovic out of the courtroom.

22 We adjourn for 45 minutes.

23 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.56 p.m.

24 --- On resuming at 1.50 p.m.

25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Before I give the floor to Judge

Page 9489

1 Fouad Riad, I should like to thank Mr. Thomas Henquet for his very good

2 work and for having assisted us in the interpretation. And having said

3 that, I give the floor, without further ado, to Judge Fouad Riad.

4 JUDGE RIAD: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.

5 Questioned by the Court:

6 JUDGE RIAD: General Halilovic, good afternoon. Can you hear me?

7 A. Yes, I hear you very well.

8 JUDGE RIAD: Perhaps you could be in a position to throw some more

9 light on the information you gave us in your testimony and in your paper.

10 My first questions are related to the column in the woods. If you can

11 answer me, I'll be very grateful.

12 What urged the civilians to go into a column into the woods?

13 A. Unfortunately, I can't answer that question, because at that time

14 I was only able to follow the situation there via the media, so I cannot

15 say with any certainty what that was.

16 JUDGE RIAD: What constituted their fears? You know you cannot

17 tell about that.

18 A. Having the experience with Serbian paramilitary formations from

19 the start of war up until July 1995, the deduction is very simple. We can

20 conclude very simply what it was all about and why.

21 JUDGE RIAD: Yes. Go ahead.

22 A. Bearing in mind the experience thus far, and knowing of the

23 methods of warfare that existed in the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina and

24 how they fought the Bosnian civilians in the first place, and all the

25 experience gained and the fears that they had, we can conclude why they

Page 9490

1 were afraid and why they took that particular road.

2 JUDGE RIAD: You want to say they were afraid for their lives?

3 A. Absolutely so, yes.

4 JUDGE RIAD: The column was, according to your report, at least

5 the majority, composed of civilians. Did I understand rightly? What was

6 the percentage of fighters or of military people in the column, if you

7 know about it?

8 A. I can't say exactly what the percentage of military people was

9 compared to the civilians in the column, but after the breakthrough from

10 the encirclement -- from the enclave, rather, several days later I saw a

11 review of the 28th Division in Tuzla, and there were about 3.000 soldiers,

12 3.000 fighters amongst them, and the information media claimed that they

13 came from the enclave to Tuzla together with the column.

14 JUDGE RIAD: And have you an idea how strongly they were armed in

15 the column?

16 A. The soldiers who were in the column together with the civilians

17 were armed with light infantry weapons. That was shown during the review

18 and ceremony held in Tuzla seven or eight days later, after they had

19 broken through, after they had exited.

20 JUDGE RIAD: And were they in a position to fight, to fight back?

21 A. Their position was a highly precarious one, and according to what

22 I learnt, once again from the information media, they had to walk for a

23 very long time and were very tired. They were exhausted, and a large

24 number did not reach Tuzla at all, so that they were not in a position to

25 defend themselves, to fight.

Page 9491

1 JUDGE RIAD: You mentioned in your report that the Serbian forces

2 launched an artillery against the column. What justified this use of

3 artillery against the column?

4 A. For that kind of use of the artillery, there is no justification

5 or reason, either human or military. The object was to destroy as many

6 military-abled people as possible, or rather, as many Bosniaks as

7 possible.

8 JUDGE RIAD: So it was not a military, a military target?

9 A. According to what I know, they were non-selective in their

10 targeting, so it was immaterial whether they were military or civilian

11 targets.

12 JUDGE RIAD: Was this a peaceful -- these military people in the

13 column able to contact the Muslim forces outside the forest? Did they

14 have means of communication?

15 A. The conclusion that I arrived at is that they did not have the

16 possibility of contacting anyone, and that the -- nor did the Corps

17 Command or the General Staff know which way they were heading.

18 JUDGE RIAD: You spoke about the indiscriminate shooting. What

19 about the executions? Because you mentioned that there was a real hunt

20 after the men in the second part of the column, and upon surrendering or

21 being captured, they were also killed at various sites. Now, was this

22 killing also indiscriminate, or was it directed towards certain fighters

23 or that sort of thing?

24 A. According to what I know, based on the information media and the

25 testimony of those who escaped from the enclave, everybody was killed at

Page 9492

1 random, indiscriminately, regardless of whether they were fighters or

2 civilians.

3 JUDGE RIAD: You spoke about people escaping from the enclave.

4 Did you, by any chance, have any contact with some of those who survived

5 to tell you what happened?

6 A. Yes, I did have contact with some of the people who had left the

7 enclave, and their stories, the stories they tell, are far worse than the

8 blackest of horror movies that the human mind has been able to conjure up

9 so far.

10 JUDGE RIAD: Did they tell you that among those that shot them or

11 executed them were soldiers of the Drina Corps?

12 A. When they spoke, they said that the Chetniks shot at them. They

13 didn't speak about -- they couldn't know what the units were, what

14 military formations they were members of, but it is to be assumed that the

15 majority of those who did that were from the Drina Corps. That is what

16 one can conclude.

17 JUDGE RIAD: Could they know that the people who shot at them were

18 military people or were bands of gangsters?

19 A. According to their testimonies, they were army members, members of

20 the military.

21 JUDGE RIAD: Now, going to the entry of Srebrenica, you -- I could

22 gather from what you said, from your report and from what was said also in

23 the -- in what we have just seen now, the tape, that there was a common

24 knowledge that Srebrenica was not well defended or defendable. Was this

25 conclusion -- do you agree with that?

Page 9493

1 A. I said at the beginning that Srebrenica could have been defended

2 but in a different way, if the combat at the battlefront had been

3 conducted in a different way in the theatre of war of Bosnia-Herzegovina;

4 that is to say, the strategy of warfare should have been different and not

5 of the kind that it was.

6 JUDGE RIAD: Now, just to see, first you said that -- in your

7 report that the weapons in Srebrenica represented no threat inside and, of

8 course, it was demilitarised as much as possible. Was that also known by

9 the Bosnian Serb party, that there was so little weapons in Srebrenica,

10 that it was not among the priorities of the Muslim army?

11 A. I think they knew. I think they knew what kind of military

12 potential Srebrenica had, and I also think they knew that this did not

13 pose a threat to their own security.

14 JUDGE RIAD: What makes you think so?

15 A. The Srebrenica enclave is deep in the rear and was surrounded by

16 Serb forces; therefore, at the time of demilitarisation, they knew the

17 materiel and equipment that Srebrenica had, approximately. And the

18 soldiers were able to assess what quantity of weapons had been given to

19 them from the demilitarisation period to July 1995. On the basis of that,

20 they knew that they were no threat to them.

21 JUDGE RIAD: But apart from this military knowledge, do you think

22 there was also some common knowledge, and you are not -- you don't need to

23 answer my question, it was common knowledge that -- which is just the

24 conclusion I drew from the tape and from what we were hearing, that there

25 was some kind of tendency to give up Srebrenica for a broader solution for

Page 9494

1 peace, that's one thing we heard; that the authorities were ready to

2 exchange Srebrenica for other Muslim territories, apparently five

3 territories along the Drina; and the fact that fighters were taken away,

4 the best fighters were taken away. Was there some kind, in your opinion,

5 the political side knew that Srebrenica is really not defendable, the Serb

6 side?

7 A. The fact that Naser Oric and 18 officers were undergoing training

8 in Zenica, that was common knowledge in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Bosnian

9 public was opposed to this kind of policy and opposed to the division of

10 the republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, but in this, public opinion was

11 tested, and it was a sort of preparation for what was to happen, what was

12 to occur later.

13 JUDGE RIAD: I think I have finished my questions. Thank you very

14 much, General Halilovic.

15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Judge Fouad

16 Riad.

17 Madam Judge Wald has the floor.

18 JUDGE WALD: Thank you.

19 General Halilovic, at the time of the 1995 Srebrenica attack,

20 after Naser Oric and his top people had left, who was in charge of the

21 remaining forces of the BiH army, the 28th Division?

22 A. From the documents that I had access to, General Rasim Delic,

23 after maybe a month of time, appointed Ramiz Becirevic, a Major with the

24 BH army, to be the deputy commander or the representative of the commander

25 of the 28th Division.

Page 9495












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French

13 and English transcripts.













Page 9496

1 JUDGE WALD: Becirevic was on the spot, he was in the area of

2 Srebrenica, at this time, at the time of the siege, in 1995?

3 A. Yes.

4 JUDGE WALD: Okay. I gather from your prior remarks, but let me

5 make sure that I understood them correctly; is it your feeling, based upon

6 your interviews and your reading, that the remaining forces of the 28th

7 Division in and around the Srebrenica enclave, that they were capable or

8 incapable of putting up a strong resistance without the reinforcement from

9 other parts of the Bosnian army? We talked about your criticism of the

10 strategy of concentrating on Sarajevo, but the forces that were actually

11 there in July, could they have resisted the attack or would it have been

12 militarily hopeless?

13 A. If we should look at the Srebrenica enclave separately, taken out

14 of context of the overall theatre of operations in Bosnia and Herzegovina,

15 and if those units were to defend themselves on their own, I can only

16 conclude that it would have been very difficult for them to defend

17 themselves on their own. However, in a coordinated action of all of the

18 units within the enclave and the free territory, with the support of the

19 International Community, I think that Srebrenica could have been defended.

20 JUDGE WALD: I understand that very well, but I asked the question

21 because you had made the remark - I don't know whether now it was in your

22 testimony today or quoted in one of the articles - that there were more

23 people acting as security at one of the SDA meetings than there were

24 actually Serbs entering Srebrenica. But I now have your answer to that.

25 Let me ask you further about whether or not you knew whether

Page 9497

1 elements of the Muslim army knew about what was happening in Potocari on

2 the next days, the days after the fall, on the 12th and 13th, the entire

3 evacuation of the women and children, the separation of the men there. To

4 your knowledge, was this something that the army knew, since we've already

5 had testimony in this proceeding that, you know, there were films of it,

6 various people saw it on TV, et cetera? So do you know whether the army

7 knew, and if so, if they had any position on it or whether they did

8 anything about it? I'm now talking about the post-Srebrenica evacuation

9 in Potocari, the events of the 12th and 13th, prior to the executions,

10 just the Potocari part.

11 A. As to what was happening on the 12th and the 13th of July, 1995 in

12 Srebrenica, I learned about that later on from the media. Whether the

13 army was aware of what was happening during those days, I think that

14 General Enver Hadzihasanovic, who is to take the stand after me in this

15 courtroom, will be in a better position to answer your question.

16 JUDGE WALD: I understand that. I understand that General

17 Hadzihasanovic will be able to tell us firsthand about many things, but we

18 also value your opinion as somebody who had a background and has since

19 talked to knowledgeable people. So to the extent that you do feel

20 comfortable in answering the questions, I, at least, would value your

21 opinion on that.

22 With respect to this question, we've seen films and had a lot of

23 evidence about the fact that General Mladic, at the Hotel Fontana, when he

24 was negotiating with the DutchBat General Colonel Koroman, et cetera, kept

25 asking for representatives of the Bosnian army to come and negotiate with

Page 9498

1 him. Whether that was done in good faith or not is a different matter,

2 but the fact is he was saying, "Well, bring me somebody from the army.

3 Bring me somebody from the army," and of course nobody from the army

4 came. So I was interested in whether, even later on, after it was all

5 over and you had a chance to talk to people in the Bosnian army, whether

6 there was a strategy by which they either didn't -- they either didn't

7 know about what was happening in Potocari or they had a strategy why they

8 wished not to enter into any of the negotiations about the removal of the

9 civilian population. It's a long question. I apologise.

10 A. I want to believe that they didn't know what was happening in

11 Potocari on the 12th and the 13th of July.

12 JUDGE WALD: Okay. I only have one very brief question on the

13 column, which you've already been questioned about. Were you able to find

14 out or come to a conclusion, based upon your interviews and your reading

15 material, as to whether or not when the column was formed - and we've had

16 much evidence about the fact that the front part of the column was the

17 military, the middle part were the civilians - whether -- at whose

18 initiative or who made the recommendation that there should be a column,

19 as opposed to, for instance, the men joining up with the women and going

20 to Potocari, or something else? Do you have any idea who made the

21 decision to form a column? The army people were at the head of the

22 column. I think that's pretty clear.

23 A. As far as I was able to learn from the testimony of the people who

24 were there, and also from the media, immediately prior to the decision

25 about the formation of the column and the direction it was to take, there

Page 9499

1 was a meeting of the military and political leadership who were in

2 Srebrenica, and I think that it was them who actually reached that

3 decision. And I think that afterwards they simply informed others that

4 they were about to leave, and then the communication was switched off.

5 JUDGE WALD: Okay. You told us that, from some of your

6 interviews, that the Bosnian Herzegovina army did not know the direction

7 in which the column was moving until, I guess, some actually arrived near

8 Tuzla. I'd be interested in your opinion about that, because we have

9 heard testimony here that, for instance, the Serbian, the Bosnian Serbs,

10 picked up the information about the column as early as the morning of July

11 12th. We have intercepts to that effect. We also have people who saw

12 movies of people being captured from the column and standing on the

13 Sandici fields in Belgrade, and even as far away as China, suggesting that

14 during that week lots of people -- by the couple of days the UN was

15 starting to put out -- the UN representative of human rights was starting

16 to put out documents, Security Council was starting to have meetings.

17 It's just difficult to understand why the Bosnian army wouldn't know the

18 direction that the column was moving. Do you have any thoughts on that?

19 A. The claim that the Bosnian army was not aware of the direction in

20 which the column was moving is -- I must admit, seems to be an unreliable

21 one. They must have known. They should have informed themselves about

22 the direction of the column, and they should have taken measures in order

23 to help them. So that claim seems unconvincing to me.

24 JUDGE WALD: All right. Now, do you know, following along on

25 that, whether or not anybody or any forces in the Bosnian army ever had

Page 9500

1 discussions with the Serbian army about what happened to the so-called

2 missing Muslim men from Srebrenica? Now, this would probably have had to

3 be toward the end of the week or maybe even after the major massacres were

4 already completed, but do you know whether or not there were ever

5 discussions held between the Bosnian army and their counterparts on the

6 Bosnian Serb side as to what happened to the men? And I refer you, for

7 instance, to several pieces of testimony we've had here where General

8 Mladic is reported to have been addressing groups of the Muslim men prior

9 to their execution on fields, and saying to them, "Your own people don't

10 want you, and so therefore I'll have to take care of you." This was after

11 prior declarations by Mladic to earlier groups that, "We'll exchange you

12 for," you know, "on prisoner exchange." Do you know anything about

13 whether or not there were, in fact, any discussions during that week, or

14 soon thereafter, about exchanges of prisoners or what had happened to the

15 missing men?

16 A. I really don't know anything about that.

17 JUDGE WALD: You never heard, even later on, that there were any

18 such discussions about prisoner exchange or what happened to those

19 particular men?

20 Okay. I just have one or two very brief questions to finish up.

21 A. No. No.

22 JUDGE WALD: Okay. I would be interested in your views, if you

23 care to present them, based upon your own study of these events, as to

24 what factors you believe might have led the -- whoever is responsible on

25 the other side to actually execute these thousands of Muslim men following

Page 9501

1 the fall of Srebrenica, considering that the later -- after Zepa, there

2 was an orderly, a reasonably orderly withdrawal of all the forces, and

3 that Srebrenica stands out as a somewhat unusual, in its scope and horror,

4 event?

5 A. Methodologically speaking, Srebrenica is no different from some

6 other parts of Bosnia-Herzegovina. It is true that it is significantly

7 different in terms of the number of the people that were executed. As to

8 why it took place in the Drina River valley, I think the reasons can be

9 found in the decisions issued by the Serbian Assembly in Banja Luka, which

10 I mentioned at the beginning of my testimony.

11 JUDGE WALD: Why would that -- I can understand that might account

12 for siege of Srebrenica and maybe even the evacuation of the people, but

13 why kill all these people as opposed to putting them in prisons and

14 exchanging them later and even putting them in camps, as we well know - we

15 have lots of experience with detention camps - but the immediate

16 executions, which were, at least so far as we know, have been unusual.

17 A. I think that today there are more than 60 settlements consisting

18 of Bosniak population mainly who wish to go back to their homes, but those

19 who were executed no longer have any chance of going back home, and that

20 area was removed from the face of the earth. It was cleansed, and as an

21 area which was between two Serb states.

22 JUDGE WALD: Okay, my final one: Did you, in any of your

23 interviews or your perusal of materials, find out whether or not the

24 Bosnian army was ever aware later on in September and October of 1995 of

25 these reburials of some of the mass graves that were going on in the same

Page 9502

1 area, and if so, whether they had any position or took any action

2 thereabouts?

3 A. I really cannot say whether the BH army had any knowledge about

4 that. I learnt about it by watching satellite footage which was very

5 graphic in its presentation.

6 JUDGE WALD: When did you see that satellite footage,

7 approximately when?

8 A. I think a year or two after Srebrenica.

9 JUDGE WALD: So at the immediate time, and I'm sure you followed

10 newspapers and media because you were interested in the events, but at the

11 immediate time in September and October, you didn't have any awareness of

12 those reburials going on?

13 A. September, October, if you're referring to 1995 --

14 JUDGE WALD: 1995.

15 A. -- then I didn't have any knowledge about that at that time, no.

16 JUDGE WALD: Thank you very much, General.

17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Madam Judge

18 Wald.

19 General Halilovic, I should like to go back to the agreement of

20 the demilitarisation of the enclave. In view of the provisions of that

21 agreement which you have discussed, the agreement of the 17th of April,

22 1993, General Morillon, General Mladic, and yourself, since you were the

23 signatories of this agreement, what did you mean by the term

24 "demilitarisation" itself? What was the interpretation which was given

25 to that term?

Page 9503

1 A. According to the agreement on the demilitarisation, the term is

2 understood to mean demilitarisation of the urban area of Srebrenica and

3 Zepa towns, as well as the immediate surrounding area which could be seen

4 with the naked eye. No individuals under arms could be found in that

5 area, nor could there be any presence of any weaponry in the area. If

6 anyone wanted to enter the safe area, he was supposed to leave the weapons

7 at the entrance into the area.

8 So, the term "demilitarised area" implied the urban areas of those

9 two towns and the immediate surrounding zone around that urban area.

10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Was there a definition of the

11 urban area contained in the agreement?

12 A. The agreement I told you about specified that there would be a

13 three-member commission which would -- the representatives of the UNPROFOR

14 would be in charge of delineating the demilitarised area.

15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I know that this issue has to a

16 certain extent already been discussed, but I should like to know whether

17 the agreement envisaged any violations, and in cases of violations, were

18 any sanctions envisaged or provided for by the agreement?

19 A. No, there were no specific provisions to that effect in the

20 agreement; however, it was implied that it was a -- since it was a

21 two-party agreement which was signed under the auspices of UNPROFOR, that

22 if either of the parties is not satisfied with the implementation of the

23 agreement, that they could always withdraw the signature, their signature,

24 on the agreement.

25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Let me go back to another issue.

Page 9504

1 The transfer of 18 officers who were based in Srebrenica and who were

2 under Naser Oric to undergo training in Zenica, how are we to understand

3 the term "training"; literally or other? What is the exact meaning of the

4 term that you used in respect of those officers?

5 A. In the order whereby they were sent for further education, it was

6 stated that they were to be sent to school, to training or education, and

7 that indeed happened; but it is my opinion that those who were in charge

8 of that order should have been aware of the consequences of such a move,

9 that is, that the combat readiness and capability, defence capability of

10 Srebrenica would be significantly affected.

11 I would never have issued such an order. I would have done

12 something completely different. I would have sent 18 capable people over

13 there to Srebrenica and not move them out of Srebrenica, to teach them

14 what they needed to know over there.

15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Does it mean that it is your

16 opinion that there was a connection between that particular decision and

17 the attack?

18 A. I think that one can conclude from what I have already said that

19 there is, indeed, a connection between the two.

20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I don't think we have any more

21 questions for you, General. Let me thank you very much, General

22 Halilovic, for coming here to testify and for having contributed to the

23 clarification of these very important issues. I should like to wish you a

24 safe journey back to your place of residence and a lot of success in your

25 work. Thank you once again.

Page 9505

1 Mr. Usher, could you please accompany the witness out of the

2 courtroom.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too, Your Honours. I

4 just wanted to ask if there was any possibility for me to go back tomorrow

5 because there is a return of population to the Podrinje area going on at

6 this time, and that was the reason why I made that request.

7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, General, it is possible for

8 you to go back tomorrow.

9 [The witness withdrew]

10 [Trial Chamber confers]

11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I think we can now continue with

12 our next witness, General Hadzihasanovic.

13 [The witness entered court]

14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, General

15 Hadzihasanovic. Can you hear me?

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I can, Your Honour.

17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Would you please read the solemn

18 declaration that the usher is giving to you.

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak

20 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.


22 [Witness answered through interpreter]

23 Questioned by the Court:

24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be seated now. So,

25 General Hadzihasanovic, let me say for the record, that is, let me ask you

Page 9506

1 for the record to spell out your name.

2 A. My name is Enver Hadzihasanovic, and I'm a retired army General.

3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] What is your date of birth?

4 A. I was born on the 7th of July, 1950, in Zvornik.

5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] What is your current position?

6 A. I am a General of the federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina,

7 retired, a retired General.

8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Where exactly do you live now,

9 in which town?

10 A. I live in Sarajevo in Trampina Street, number 6.

11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Before we proceed with your

12 testimony, properly speaking, let me first of all thank you on behalf of

13 the Chamber for having responded to the summons we issued for you, and for

14 having accepted to place yourself at our disposal by appearing before the

15 Chamber in this case. Thank you very much for the very detailed letter

16 that you addressed to the Chamber with a number of attachments.

17 I would like to say something about the general framework of your

18 testimony. You have been invited to testify as a court witness in this

19 case, whereas in other cases, normally it is the parties to the case who

20 usually call their witnesses.

21 It is my duty as the president of this Chamber to remind you

22 briefly of the conditions under which your testimony will take place. I

23 know that you are familiar with the procedure that we are going to apply,

24 but let me remind you once again of the overall conditions. I know that

25 you have already appeared as a witness before the Tribunal, before a

Page 9507

1 Chamber that I had the honour to be part of.

2 You have been summoned to tell the whole truth and nothing but the

3 truth in this case. The sessions are public in principle, and we should

4 like to preserve that public character of the hearing as much as it is

5 possible. However, should you deem it necessary, you can always ask the

6 Chamber to order a private or a closed session which, in practical terms,

7 means that for as long as the closed session or the private session lasts,

8 the public are not be able to hear your words, and the transcript of your

9 testimony during that period of time will not be made public.

10 If you have any notes, you may use them to refresh your memory,

11 but we would like to ask you not to read a written statement that you may

12 have compiled in advance. We should like to hear your spontaneous

13 narrative about the events that you are familiar with concerning the

14 attack against the Srebrenica enclave by Serb forces in July 1995, the

15 fall, the subsequent fall of that enclave, and the destiny of the civilian

16 and military population of the area.

17 After that, you will probably receive questions from the parties,

18 and after their questions, the Judges will also probably have a few

19 questions for you. You may refuse to respond to a question, you have the

20 right to do that; however, I have to advise you that you may do so only if

21 your response is likely to incriminate you in accordance with the

22 provisions of Rule 90 of our Rules of Procedure and Evidence. The Judges

23 can oblige you to answer the question anyway, but such an answer of yours

24 can never be used in evidence against yourself.

25 Let me also inform you that we usually make a break after one hour

Page 9508

1 and 20 minutes of testimony, but I don't think that that will be necessary

2 now. We may work a little later today, but we will see about that.

3 Thank you very much for your attention. I hope that I was clear

4 and that you have understood me well, and let me now ask you if you are

5 ready to proceed with your testimony, that is, if you can proceed with

6 telling us something about your career, in particular, in the period of

7 time which followed the year 1993. You have the floor, General.

8 A. I'm ready to begin. First of all, I should like to say good

9 afternoon to the Trial Chamber and to thank them for their hospitality

10 here in The Hague.

11 Let me say that as a military man, I will be speaking about

12 military matters. I don't wish to enter into questions of a political

13 nature; that is not my field. Of course, what I say, I say publicly. I

14 have no request for any other kind of sessions but public ones.

15 I can commence, but I think it would be easier for me, perhaps, if

16 you, Mr. President, were to ask questions and thus guide my presentation

17 so that you hear what you wish to hear from me at this -- these

18 proceedings. I will start in the way that I think would be a good idea,

19 and I will focus on the main events.

20 In 1993, at the end of 1993, in October more specifically, I took

21 on the duty of the Chief of Staff of the General Staff of the army of

22 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I remained in that post until 1995, the end of

23 1995, when the Dayton Accords were signed, and when, according to those

24 accords, it was necessary to establish the army of the federation, and

25 General Dudakovic took over from me.

Page 9509

1 For one -- I had a pause for one year because I had a traffic

2 accident myself and I was on sick leave because I had received an injury

3 to my leg. I took up my duties again in the Ministry of Defence when I

4 came back from sick leave, and I was the deputy assistant of the Ministry

5 of Defence in the federation for inspection and supervision affairs. And

6 last year in April, I retired as -- I was pensioned as a General.

7 That, briefly, is my curriculum vitae since 1993.

8 I should like to start off by saying something about the 28th

9 Division for me to be able to base my further presentation on this, which

10 was -- and it was located in Srebrenica. I'm not going to take up too

11 much of the Court's time with facts and details because I can hand some

12 documents over to the Court for its use, and one of those documents, which

13 is in three parts, is the structure and organisation of the 28th Division

14 itself, how it was established militarily speaking, and what we thought

15 that informational terms, establishment terms, it was to be organised, how

16 it should be armed, and how it should be established, the army and that

17 division. And that was their basic document according to which they were

18 to function.

19 In 1993 and 1994, we had series reorganisation in the BH army, and

20 we organised the brigades and corps according to the standards as we set

21 them out. It was our great problem how we could do this with the 8th

22 Operative Group that we had up until then in Srebrenica because, in fact,

23 it was a component part of the 2nd Corps of the BH army, and that problem

24 is something that the command of the 2nd Corps wanted us to solve, and the

25 only way of doing this was that we established with the 28th Division the

Page 9510

1 proper communication, which we did not have up until that time.

2 We had a modest means of communication, and when I say that, I

3 mean an amateur radio station where we were only able to open -- to talk

4 about the vital day-to-day questions and issues openly. But in order to

5 be able to protect this communication of ours, we had to send special

6 communication devices which would ensure that. And so in the second half

7 of 1994, we succeeded in doing so, with a group of members of the BH

8 army. We took communication devices. One of them was a PC, a computer, a

9 PC. That was one device of the type that is used in that mode of

10 communication. It had a modem for encryption and so on. And from

11 Srebrenica we got a written paper, and this allowed us to send out written

12 documents. So that is how we sent the documents that I'm able to provide

13 you with.

14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, perhaps we could talk

15 about communication. Did the Bosniak authorities -- were they put

16 up-to-date regularly of the events taking place in the Srebrenica

17 enclave? And perhaps you could add the military situation and the forces

18 that were in place.

19 A. That is precisely what I was going on to explain, Mr. President.

20 I said up until then it was the 8th Operative Group, and its structure and

21 organisation did not entirely correspond to the structure and organisation

22 of the BH army itself. And we wanted to put that matter right, to correct

23 it, because without means of communication, we were not able to send out

24 these three documents which I have here.

25 The first document relates to the structure and organisation of

Page 9511

1 the command of divisions. The second document relates to the structure

2 and organisation of one light brigade, and the 28th Division in Srebrenica

3 had five of -- five formations of that type. Zepa too belonged to that

4 division, militarily and organisationally speaking, where one brigade was

5 put up. And the division had a light battalion, and this document is the

6 groundwork for those formations.

7 For us to send this out, we had to send people on foot to actually

8 take these communication devices and to establish communication with

9 them. When this was received, the division was able to become established

10 on the basis of that document, with respect to manpower mostly rather than

11 technical materiel, which was always lacking; it was always in short

12 supply.

13 As far as manpower went, the figures -- the numbers are as

14 follows, the strength of the forces was as follows. If the Court requires

15 these documents, I shall be happy to furnish them. I hope that I won't

16 use up too much time, but I shall have to comment. May I avail myself of

17 that opportunity? May I go ahead?

18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, General Hadzihasanovic.

19 You may use those documents, but let us start out from the point of view

20 that the public, in fact, has no knowledge of those documents. Please

21 bear that in mind and proceed. I don't know whether the two parties wish

22 to have the document.

23 Mr. Harmon, let us hear you first.

24 MR. HARMON: Mr. President, if the witness is going to use a

25 document in Court, I think it should be given an identification number and

Page 9512

1 an exhibit number, and then we can refer to the exhibit number during the

2 course of the examination, if necessary.

3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Petrusic, what do you have

4 to say on the issue?

5 Mr. Visnjic, then.

6 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I join the proposal

7 made by Mr. Harmon.

8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General Hadzihasanovic, in order

9 to be able to organise our discussion -- I don't know whether you have any

10 copies - I don't suppose you do - of that document. Do you have any

11 copies?

12 A. These three documents that I mentioned are very extensive

13 documents, and from them I have made summaries, which I shall be

14 commenting on to save time. The excerpts that I'm going to talk about, I

15 have copies of and can provide them, whereas the documents in their

16 entirety, if you wish to take them to have them photocopied, they are at

17 your disposal.

18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] If you have copies, we can have

19 them distributed. But what we need to do is to assign a number for

20 identification, for each document, so that we can refer back to it. If

21 you have copies, you can hand them to the usher, who will distribute them,

22 and if you place the document on the ELMO, that would be a help. And we

23 will assign an identification number to the document.

24 Mr. Usher, please take the document.

25 Just a moment, please.

Page 9513

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I have a total of

2 four copies. I need one and I can hand three over.

3 [Trial Chamber confers with registrar]

4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I apologise. I see Mr. Visnjic

5 on his feet. Go ahead, Mr. Visnjic.

6 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, we agree to the

7 witness using these copies, or excerpts from the documents, but not to

8 lose time, after today's session we should like to have permission to take

9 a look at the original documents, because these -- this document is a

10 summary taken from the original extensive documents.

11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General Hadzihasanovic, you were

12 going to say something. I interrupted you. I apologise. Please say what

13 you were going to say. No? Very well.

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What I said was that I have four

15 copies. I need one for myself. Are three copies sufficient for the

16 Court?

17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Okay. Very well. You have

18 three copies, that is to say, four in all, four copies in all. As to the

19 original -- we could give a copy to the Prosecution and the Defence, and

20 the registrar will have the other available copy. As soon as you place a

21 document on the ELMO, we shall be able to follow and we shall assign an

22 identification number to that particular document. So the registrar has a

23 copy, the two parties have a copy, and the registrar will make copies for

24 the Judges. So would you please hand over your copy, one for the Defence

25 and one for the Prosecution.

Page 9514

1 [Trial Chamber confers with registrar]

2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, I think that we're

3 ready to begin. Would you place the document on the ELMO. And Madam

4 Registrar will assign a number. What number do we have, Madam Registrar?


6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] C-1. Very well. C-1. The

7 Chamber, number 1.

8 General, please proceed.

9 A. Just to confirm, the documents that I'm going to comment on are

10 the product of the original documents. They are taken from the original

11 documents that went to Srebrenica. According to those documents, the 28th

12 Division in Srebrenica should have had, in total, 5.685 men. That is the

13 total, and it is shown here at the bottom of this column. In actual fact,

14 in Srebrenica it had 5.803 men, and the percentage was 102 per cent, which

15 can be seen down here.

16 On this part of the diagram, you see the structure and

17 organisation of the 28th Division itself in Srebrenica, without the

18 brigade from Zepa. The request by the General Staff of the army was that

19 each unit should have 110-per-cent manpower, a strength of 110 per cent.

20 Here you see that the percentage is 102, but including the Zepa Brigade,

21 which had more men, then the percentage would be 108 per cent, was within

22 allowed limits.

23 I will take this diagram away now and we'll take a look at another

24 diagram relating to manpower. On the basis of these documents, the 28th

25 Division did not have the kind of equipment and weaponry that it should

Page 9515

1 have had, so on this second diagram I'm going to give you the exact

2 figures of what it should have had and what it indeed had. I also have

3 the same number of copies, so I shall hand them over to the usher to

4 distribute.

5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. Would you mark your own

6 copy. The first document was C-1. This will be document C-2. And you

7 can mark your own document, because you will know which one is yours and

8 which one you have handed to the parties, and you will be able to refer to

9 the document by its identification number, which is C-2.

10 A. [Marks]

11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] We now have the second document,

12 which is C-2. Thank you.

13 A. Document C-2 relates to what was necessary, according to the

14 requests made by the division, what they should have had, and the actual

15 state of affairs, that is to say, what the division in Srebrenica actually

16 disposed of, actually had in its possession.

17 We enumerate the basic types of weaponry which it should have had,

18 so that pistols, for example, in the case of pistols, the division in

19 Srebrenica should have had 1.184 -- no. No. It doesn't seem to be

20 right. I apologise. It's difficult for me to follow on the monitor, on

21 the screen. That's better.

22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] General, are you able to follow

23 on the ELMO? When you point things out to us on the ELMO, it comes out on

24 our monitors, on our screens, so we're able to follow too.

25 A. Yes, but I wasn't getting the whole picture on the monitor. I

Page 9516












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French

13 and English transcripts.













Page 9517

1 have it now. It's been adjusted. Thank you.

2 Let me repeat. According to the documents that we sent out, in

3 Srebrenica there should have been 1.184 pistols; what they actually had

4 was 62. Automatic rifles, they should have had 4.109 of them; in actual

5 fact, they had 1.947, or 46 per cent. Sniper rifles, they should have had

6 128, and in actual fact they only had 13. Submachine-gun, they should

7 have had 326; they actually had 27. Machine-guns, they should have had

8 90 -- no, 83; in actual fact, they had 15. Mortars, 60-millimetre ones,

9 they should have had 98; in actual fact, they only had 12. 82-millimetre

10 mortars, 36; they had 5. 120-millimetre mortar, they should have had 36;

11 they had none, in actual fact. Hand grenades, hand launchers, 16 they

12 should have had, but they just had 9. Hand-held rocket launchers, that

13 was. Recoilless guns, 82 millimetres, they should have had 36; they had

14 4. Hand-held rocket launchers of the Zolja type, they should have had

15 478; they had 68. Anti-armour Osa-type launchers, they should have had

16 143; they had none. Rocket launchers, hand-held armoured, 9-K-11, they

17 should have had 18; they had none. A light launcher of the Fagot type,

18 9-K-11-F, they should have had 15 of those; they just had 1.

19 Anti-missile rockets, they should have had 15; they didn't have

20 1. Anti-aircraft guns of the 20-millimetre type, one barrel, they should

21 have had 20. In actual fact, they only had 4. Along with this column, we

22 have the percentages which you can look at.

23 So that was the actual situation in Srebrenica as to what it

24 should have been on the basis of these documents.

25 At the end of 1994 in Srebrenica, the overall situation was highly

Page 9518

1 complex and extremely difficult, both with respect to the army and the

2 people, and it became even more complex because all humanitarian convoys

3 had been blocked and because the parachute operation undertaken by the

4 United Nations had always been stopped. And there was every indication

5 that in Srebrenica, the worst things could be expected, that people could

6 just leave without thinking, to leave a situation that was untenable for

7 them. And we tried to organise the army and to tell the people that we,

8 ourselves, wanted to take steps to calm the situation down until a final,

9 better solution was -- had been come up with.

10 And so at the request of the division and according to our own

11 assessments, we wanted to help the situation in the army by sending them

12 more resources and to enable that particular division, if there were any

13 serious problems, to ensure its combat readiness to be able to defend

14 themselves in the days to come until we ourselves were able to undertake

15 other steps and military steps if we failed to find a political solution

16 and if the United Nations were not able to carry out what they promised

17 with respect to the safe area. That was our goal. A division organised

18 in this way and established in this way absolutely was no threat to the

19 Serb army or to anybody else in the region.

20 The division as a whole, for it to embark upon a combat operation

21 with the amount of ammunition that it had would have been completely

22 impotent. We knew that we weren't -- would not be able to furnish the

23 division with what it needed quickly because we were not able to get the

24 materiel and resources to them. Our first attempt was to introduce the

25 communication devices, and we decided to do that on the ground, on land,

Page 9519

1 with a certain number of men that we had at our disposal. But that didn't

2 prove successful. The people that we dispatched, that we sent, were sent

3 into a risky situation. They risked being captured and ultimately

4 liquidated if captured. So it was a high-risk situation for the men.

5 And then we decided to do this with the modest means we had at our

6 disposal and the number of helicopters we had at our disposal, the few

7 helicopters we had. In our estimations, this would be a difficult task

8 and would require a lot of time. We were not able to give the pilots an

9 exclusive military order to fly because we knew we would be sending them

10 to their death, and we -- it was on a voluntary, almost a voluntary basis

11 that these sorties were organised. And we sent ten helicopters. The

12 structure of the helicopters included some weapons and some ammunition,

13 but they were also carrying clothing and sanitary material. They also

14 transported a certain number of doctors and brought out some seriously

15 wounded people and people that were supposed to go on for further

16 education.

17 It was probably a signal to the army of Republika Srpska that

18 something was afoot and that they could expect some combat operations;

19 however, I say with full responsibility here and now that that was not our

20 objective. Our objective was to establish an army, to establish a command

21 over the army, and that they should act on the basis of orders and

22 commands, but for us to be able to do that, we had to see that their

23 combat readiness was up to par. For us to be able to do this, we needed a

24 lot more time, and time was something that depended on how far we were

25 able to transport these supplies.

Page 9520

1 I have documents here which indicate how much time we would have

2 needed and how many tons of cargo would have been necessary for the

3 division to receive basic resources, that is to say, ammunition for their

4 rifles, one combat kit for mortars and for the anti-armoured devices, and

5 for everything that they were lacking, in fact.

6 And in order not to waste time now, you can use these documents

7 and the tables, and the next table will, I'm sure, will -- be identified

8 as C-3, and it shows just how much material was necessary for Srebrenica,

9 expressed in tons, for them to be able to receive one combat kit and one

10 unit of fire and the other materiel. I will be happy to supply copies of

11 this document as well.

12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] This will be document C-3.

13 Perhaps, General, instead of analysing the details on the basis of

14 the table, you could perhaps give us an idea of a more general nature.

15 You could tell us about this in more general terms, and may we have your

16 conclusions on the basis of the document.

17 A. Yes. I will try and do so as briefly as possible. And, of

18 course, if you're interested, you can use this table because these indices

19 and this data was taken from the standards that were applicable in the

20 former JNA, and they emerge from the standards for the resources and

21 equipment that I am talking about. Let me just show you two more

22 diagrams, and then I will give you my conclusions and say what I wanted to

23 say.

24 For the division in Srebrenica, minus one brigade, receive the

25 weapons it lacked, we had to transport a total of 58.4 tons of material.

Page 9521

1 For it to receive the ammunition it needed, this meant an extra 142.6 tons

2 which had to be dispatched and transported. The individual equipment is

3 given on the diagram, and I don't want to comment on that now.

4 At the time, for a division, in terms of weapons and ammunition,

5 this meant something but it did not mean everything, so in the next

6 diagram I wanted to explain that if a minimum of necessary material was to

7 be sent, we had to send a certain quantity expressed in tons.

8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] This, then, General, will be

9 C-4, document C-4.

10 A. For the men to have just one meal a day, a cold ration, dry

11 ration, which each soldier has to carry with him when he is on an

12 assignment, we would have to have sent, to supply only that one dry

13 ration, which was two kilograms, an extra 11.6 tons would have had to be

14 transported to ensure two kilograms per man per day.

15 When we're talking about clothing, we did not go -- we did not

16 count clothing, shoes, shirts, trousers, and so on, but just tents, and

17 that meant an additional 8.7 tons.

18 To ensure the means of communication within a division required an

19 additional 2.96 tons to be transported.

20 When we saw how many flights a helicopter would have had to make,

21 this was an enormous number, and I show this on my next diagram.

22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] This next document will be

23 numbered C-5.

24 A. In order to transport the necessary materiel, one combat

25 ammunition set which would be necessary for the division to defend itself

Page 9522

1 for a period of three to five days, they would need -- we would need to

2 send out a total of 8 times an escadrille of 6 helicopters, a squad of 6

3 helicopters, which is something we did not have. For the dry rations and

4 ground canvases and tents, 1 squad plus 2 helicopters, and for all this

5 materiel we would have to have sent 9 squads times 6 helicopters, with 2

6 helicopters flying independently.

7 For that division to engage in combat, according to our

8 assessments, it would need at least 5 combat ammunition sets and all the

9 squadrons I mentioned. And for that to be ensured, a 6 helicopter

10 squadron would have had to fly 28 times, 28 days, plus 2 individual

11 helicopters flying during that time.

12 Our attempts were made with the 10 helicopters I mentioned in

13 different intervals at the end of 1994 and 1995, and they gave hope to the

14 people over there that something was being done, that we were doing

15 something to help them. And that was our main objective, to give them

16 that hope, although we knew that we could not ensure that many number of

17 flights. We had a total of just 6 helicopters; of that number, 2 MTB 17

18 were capacitated to take a cargo of 3 tons. All the other helicopters had

19 a lower-bearing capacity.

20 And we achieved our objective. The situation in Srebrenica was

21 calmed down, the people believed in the army more, had a greater belief in

22 the army, and they believed that, if anything happened, the army could

23 protect them.

24 By doing that, we had achieved one of our goals completely, that

25 is to say, the soldiers formed formational structures, they were

Page 9523

1 established, and we started to supply them with the materiel they needed

2 in addition to what they already had. And this calmed the mood in

3 Srebrenica. However, quite unexpectedly, the situation developed, and

4 what happened was the attack on the Srebrenica enclave by the army of

5 Republika Srpska.

6 There were intimations in the early summer of 1995 that this might

7 happen sometime in April and in May --

8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I apologise for interrupting,

9 General, but I think that we'll have to end there for today. We have been

10 working for an hour and a half now, and because of the interpreters and

11 everybody else, we shall have to end there today and take up our

12 deliberations tomorrow morning at 9.20.

13 I'm going to ask Mr. Fourmy, the legal officer, to try to organise

14 the documents, to help you organise the documents so that tomorrow morning

15 we could perhaps proceed with greater speed. We would like to have an

16 overview and a general idea on the basis of the documents but not to go

17 into the details. Yes, they are important for us, but for the public

18 gallery attending these proceedings, we should also like to have a more

19 general view and general conclusions and observations. So I'm going to

20 ask Mr. Fourmy and Madam Registrar to do that together with you.

21 Having said that, we adjourn and reconvene at 9.20 tomorrow

22 morning. The hearing is adjourned.

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

24 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 3.17 p.m., to

25 be reconvened on Friday, the 6th day of

Page 9524

1 April, 2001, at 9.20 a.m.