1 Wednesday, 1 March 2000
2 [Open session]
3 --- Upon commencing at 9.35 a.m.
4 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation]
5 Mr. President, good morning. The accused should have
6 been here, and I apologise; they're a bit delayed.
7 Perhaps we should have a very brief pause for me to
8 inquire where they are exactly. Perhaps they're on
9 their way in.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Let us wait
11 a little, and you may leave the courtroom to see what
12 is happening.
13 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Thank you,
14 Mr. President.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I'm afraid
16 I cannot formally open the hearing because we have a
17 technical problem, and we need at least 20 minutes to
18 deal with it. Therefore, we will begin around 10.00,
19 and I say around 10.00; that is, once this technical
20 problem has been dealt with.
21 Mr. Registrar, do you have anything to add?
22 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] No,
23 Mr. President. I'm going to inform the parties when
24 exactly the hearing will begin.
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Our
1 estimate is that we will be ready by 10.00 to begin,
2 but that depends on the time we need, and Mr. Registrar
3 will let us know the exact time.
4 --- Short break taken at 9.42 a.m.
5 --- On resuming at 10.44 a.m.
6 [The accused entered court]
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be
8 seated. Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Good
9 morning to the technical booth, the interpreters, the
10 Prosecution and the Defence.
11 Mr. Registrar, will you call the case,
13 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Yes. Good
14 morning, Mr. President. Case number IT-98-30-T, the
15 Prosecutor versus Miroslav Kvocka, Milojica Kos, Mladjo
16 Radic, and Zoran Zigic.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you
18 very much.
19 Ms. Hollis, can we have the appearances for
20 the Prosecution, please?
21 MS. HOLLIS: Good morning, Your Honours.
22 Brenda Hollis, Michael Keegan represent the Prosecution
23 this morning, and we're assisted by Patricia Reynders.
24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you
25 very much, Ms. Hollis.
1 Mr. Simic, can we have the appearances for
2 the Defence?
3 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Good morning,
4 Your Honours. My name is Krstan Simic. With me is
5 Mr. Lukic, co-counsel, and we represent Mr. Kvocka in
6 this trial.
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [ Interpretation] Mr.
9 MR. NIKOLIC: Good morning, Your Honours.
10 The Defence of the accused Kos, as on the previous
11 days, have been Mrs. Nikolic, Mr. Eugene O'Sullivan,
12 and Zarko Nikolic as lead counsel.
13 MR. FILA: [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr.
14 President. Zoran Jovanovic and Toma Fila representing
15 Mr. Radic.
16 MR. TOSIC: [Interpretation] Good morning,
17 Your Honours. The Defence of Zoran Zigic is myself;
18 Simo Tosic, an attorney from Banja Luka; and my
19 co-counsel, Slobodan Stojanovic, on my left, an
20 attorney from Belgrade.
21 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you,
22 Mr. Tosic.
23 Finally we are able to resume our work, but
24 before doing so, we heard yesterday a statement by
25 Mr. Tosic.
1 Mr. Registrar, can you give us any
2 information on the measures taken in the meantime?
3 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Yes,
4 Mr. President. After yesterday's hearing, I informed
5 the Registrar, as well as the Security Services, and
6 appropriate measures have been taken and other measures
7 are also being considered and in the final stages.
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you
9 very much. We I apologise for this delay. There were
10 some technical problems relating to the detainees. As
11 you know, yesterday we had almost 50 per cent of the
12 detention unit staff here.
13 In any case, I apologise for this, and I draw
14 the attention of Mr. Abtahi and the Registrar for these
15 things to be regulated. We have lost almost an hour of
16 our work, and we cannot allow this situation to be
18 I am going to give the floor to Mr. Simic, to
19 continue with the testimony of Mr. Kvocka.
20 I should also like to remind Mr. Kvocka that
21 you are still under the commitment of the solemn
23 Mr. Simic, you have the floor.
24 WITNESS: MIROSLAV KVOCKA [RESUMED]
25 [Witness answered through interpreter]
1 Examined by Mr. Simic: [Cont'd]
2 Q. Thank you, Your Honours. Mr. Kvocka, no
3 matter how hard we try, at times we leave things out,
4 and this is the case today. So I'd like to go back to
5 two issues which we left out yesterday and which are
6 linked to that topic.
7 My first question has to do with the change
8 of authority which occurred on the 30th of April,
9 1992. Did that change affect the police as a result of
10 a new structure of control and command starting from
11 the public security station, the Prijedor police
12 station, right down to the Omarska police precinct?
13 A. Yes. There were certain changes made in the
14 personnel. The head of the Prijedor police department
15 became Simo Drljaca. The chief of the police, as the
16 second in command after him, was Dusko Jankovic. The
17 commander of the Prijedor police station number 1,
18 Milutin Cadzo, was appointed to this position. Before
19 that, or several years prior to that, he had been a
20 retired worker of the public security service. And in
21 the Omarska police precinct, Zeljko Meakic remained the
22 commander because he was appointed to that position
23 only some 15 days prior to the event.
24 Q. If I understand you correctly, we asked you
25 yesterday whether in the public security station there
1 was a chief of police. You said there was not. Does
2 that mean that after these changes, which occurred on
3 the 30th of April, this post was filled by the
4 appointment of a new individual?
5 A. Yes, exactly so, and that was Dule Jankovic,
6 who until then had been the commander of the Prijedor
7 police station.
8 Q. So Dule Jankovic is promoted a step forward,
9 and Mr. Cadzo is being reactivated after having retired
10 and becomes head of Police Station 1, Omarska.
11 A. No. Dule Jankovic is moving upwards towards
12 the head of the Public Security Station, Simo Drljaca,
13 whereas Milutin Cadzo takes his place, the place of
14 Dule Jankovic, who until then held the position of
15 commander of the Prijedor 1 Police Station.
16 Q. I obviously misunderstood you.
17 Another question linked to these changes has
18 to do with changes in the Omarska police department or
19 precinct. Were there any changes regarding the work of
20 that department, since you told us already that
21 Mr. Meakic remained in charge, as he had been appointed
22 only a few days before that. Were there any other
24 A. No, there were no changes.
25 Q. You mean in the method of work?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. What about any changes in the composition of
3 the police officers, those who were subordinate to
4 Mr. Meakic?
5 A. No.
6 Q. You mentioned that Arifagic and some others
7 of Muslim ethnicity used to work there.
8 A. Yes, I did mention that. But when these
9 policemen left the Omarska police station, this
10 happened in April -- they left in April, after certain
11 incidents about which I heard reports in the media, and
12 those events have to do with the separation of the
13 Serbian Ministry of Internal Affairs in Sarajevo.
14 After those decisions that were announced in
15 the media, in the Omarska police department, three
16 policemen left the police station, and they were of
17 Muslim ethnicity. They were Hamdija Arifagic, Edin
18 Besic, and Fikret Harambasic. I think there were only
19 the three of them who were Muslims at that point in
21 Q. Let us also touch upon another topic that you
22 have mentioned just now. Mr. Niemann, in his opening
23 statement, on a number of occasions, used the term
24 "police processing." Obviously, this term had a
25 rather negative implication, as if it implied physical
1 abuse and the like. So my question to you is: This
2 term, "police processing," was it an official term?
3 And if it was, what did it actually mean?
4 A. During my work in the police, I often came
5 across this term, "police processing," or simply
6 "processing," for short. This meant, if I can give
7 you a theoretical definition, a group of operative and
8 tactical acts and measures undertaken to elucidate a
9 certain criminal act, including calling the suspect for
10 an informative interview and linking him to the act so
11 that a particular case could be completed and handed
12 over for further processing by the prosecutor's
14 Q. Mr. Kvocka, was that a customary, an official
15 term used for police activities, the term "processing"?
16 A. Yes, it was used by all police members. That
17 was a term that was widely in use. Whether it was
18 strictly prescribed as an official term, I don't know.
19 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you have touched upon a very
20 important topic for the time we are talking about and
21 for the events that were to occur later, and that is
22 the separation of a part -- let us conditionally call
23 it a separation -- of the Serbian section of the
24 police, or the Ministry of the Interior, from the
25 system of the republican MUP or Ministry of the
1 Interior of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Can you tell us when
2 that happened?
3 A. The beginning of April.
4 Q. You were working in the Omarska police
5 department at the time, were you not?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. You, Mladjo Radic, or any other policeman of
8 that police station, did anyone call you to attend any
9 kind of meeting or discussion to familiarise you with
10 the plan and to ask you whether you supported or did
11 not support any such decision?
12 A. No. There were no such meetings, nor any
13 such discussions in the Omarska police department.
14 Q. Had you heard at all that something like that
15 was going to happen before you learned that it had
16 actually happened?
17 A. No. Nothing at all was heard about it, nor
18 was there any talk about any such plans.
19 Q. What was the way in which you learnt about a
20 decision to separate a part of the police system of
22 A. I learnt it on television. In those days,
23 many things were announced on television, and, of
24 course, in the newspapers and the radio.
25 Q. That happened, as we know. Did anything
1 change regarding the assignments of your commander,
2 Mr. Meakic, you yourself, and the other policemen as a
3 result of that change?
4 A. No, nothing at all changed, except what I
5 have already said, and that is that policemen of Muslim
6 ethnicity stopped working there.
7 Q. Do you know the reason why they stopped
8 working there? Did you inquire into the reasons why
9 that happened?
10 A. I simply don't know anything about that.
11 Whether they were under pressure to leave or whether
12 they left of their own accord, not wishing to work
13 under the new system, or whether there was some other
14 reason for this, I really don't know.
15 Q. Did you hear from non-Serb members in the
16 police that they had been asked to sign any document of
17 loyalty? Was there any talk about such things?
18 A. At the time, no. This was not mentioned at
19 the time.
20 Q. But was this mentioned after the takeover of
21 power? Did you hear mention of this?
22 A. Yes. After the takeover of power in
23 Prijedor, there was talk that policemen of Muslim
24 ethnicity should declare allegiance or loyalty.
25 Whether they were asked to sign a document or something
1 like that, I don't know, but there was talk about this
2 later on, in the course of the month of May.
3 Q. As the Omarska police station was already
4 composed of only one ethnicity, the problem didn't
6 A. Yes. There was no talk about that at all in
7 the Omarska police station.
8 Q. Mr. Kvocka, in the course of April, two major
9 events occurred: the separation of a part of the MUP
10 and then the takeover of power on the 30th of April.
11 And then there will be certain tensions, which we will
12 come back to later.
13 Within the context of those events, the
14 commander of the police station, Mr. Meakic, did he
15 ever convene a meeting and say, "Gentlemen,"
16 or "Comrade Policemen, changes have taken place. The
17 rules are going to change. We are now going to work in
18 such-and-such a way and no longer in such-and-such a
19 way, in line with decisions taken"?
20 A. No. In the Omarska police precinct, in the
21 course of April, there were absolutely no official
22 meetings which could have perhaps been organised by
23 Zeljko Meakic, nor were there any announcements made by
24 him relating to the events that you have just referred
1 Q. Does that mean that these events had
2 absolutely no impact on the assignments and method of
3 work of policemen, and that they continued to act in
4 line with the regulations, plans, and programmes of the
5 particular police station?
6 A. Yes. That is how we continued to work in
7 Omarska, according to the established principles of
9 Q. Did the same regulations remain in force?
10 Did you policemen continue to behave in the same manner
11 as before?
12 A. Yes. Everything remained the same.
13 Q. But after all, these were quite extraordinary
14 events. In view of the security situation, were there
15 any reinforcements, more intensive activities on the
16 part of the police, more frequent controls, greater
17 security measures, and things like that?
18 A. Yes, there were such tendencies. Generally
19 speaking, we worked a little longer hours and there we
20 had less free time.
21 Q. Was that the only change?
22 A. Yes, exactly.
23 Q. A moment ago you mentioned and -- it is
24 inevitable for such major events to influence relations
25 in an environment such as Prijedor, which was a
1 multi-ethnic community and in which the Muslims and
2 Serbs accounted for roughly the same percentage share.
3 Did this affect relationships was a whole? What was
4 the overall atmosphere, the psychosis in town?
5 A. It is common knowledge, and I myself was able
6 to register this as I travelled between Omarska and my
7 apartment in Prijedor, that there was a certain unrest
8 among the population. There was a feeling of fear
9 shared by all, by people of all ethnic groups.
10 Virtually all people were saying that they didn't know
11 what would happen, that there was a possibility of war,
12 that the authorities don't seem to be able to come to
13 any kind of an agreement or solution, and things like
15 Q. Did the police have any information that
16 there was an illegal arms trade, that one or other
17 group was being armed?
18 A. Yes, there were such stories.
19 Q. Did the police succeed, in the course of its
20 work, to discover cases of that, or was it all reduced
21 to rumour?
22 A. As far as I can recollect, in Omarska no
23 significant discoveries were made regarding illegal
24 arming of people.
25 Q. But within the territory of the public
1 security station, because, after all, that is its
2 jurisdiction, was there reference to such things?
3 A. Within the territory of the municipality, it
4 was being said that everyone was getting arms.
5 Q. Was this tension covered by the media and
6 were there reports about that in the media?
7 A. Yes. The media reported about this
8 extensively, and the reports were mainly reduced to the
9 fact that danger was threatening from the other side,
10 depending, of course, on whom the media belonged to.
11 Q. Were there also derogatory terms used in the
12 media? During the war in Croatia, the Serbs were
13 described with derogatory terms, and vice versa. So
14 were there such cases here too?
15 A. Yes. Those terms began to be widely used, so
16 that the Croats were referred to as Ustasha, the Serbs
17 as Chetniks. The Muslims were sometimes described as
18 Ustashas as well, or simply balija, or simply Turks, or
19 Jihad fighters who were arming themselves, and so on.
20 Q. Was reference frequently made in the media to
21 the existence of the Green Berets?
22 A. Yes. In this general context, mention was
23 made of the fact that the Muslim population has its own
24 army which are known -- which called themselves the
25 Green Berets.
1 Q. As a person who, according to your own
2 testimony, had a democratic orientation and attitude
3 towards all these developments, can you assess the role
4 of the media? I am referring to the media of all three
5 sides. Did it act with a view to overcoming the crisis
6 or, rather, to instigating it?
7 A. Let me tell you, I'm not really an expert on
8 journalism, but judging by what I heard as an ordinary
9 citizen, a man in the street, my conclusion was that no
10 one really made an effort to appease the situation.
11 Virtually everyone was contributing to the heightening
12 of those tensions.
13 Q. Mr. Kvocka, this general atmosphere, did it
14 have its manifestations on the ground in the form of
15 certain checkpoints?
16 A. Yes. There were references by people to the
17 fact that even several days before the takeover of
18 authority, checkpoints had cropped up in certain
19 places. Those checkpoints were mainly erected in
20 places and villages where the majority population
21 belonged to a particular ethnic group, so that access
22 by members of another ethnic group to those places
23 would be very strictly controlled and in some cases
25 Q. You worked at Omarska, you lived in Prijedor,
1 which implies that whenever you worked, you commuted
2 between Omarska and Prijedor, which is a distance of
3 about 25 kilometres. On your way, were there any
4 checkpoints, and if so, would you describe them for us?
5 A. At the time when I needed to commute between
6 Omarska and my apartment in Prijedor, I was able to
7 observe at least three checkpoints on that stretch of
8 the road.
9 Q. Where were they?
10 A. Immediately outside of Omarska, on the way to
11 Prijedor, there is a small intersection and there was a
12 checkpoint there. This checkpoint had existed even
13 before, because it was a traffic-control checkpoint.
14 Q. Very well. Now that we're talking about this
15 checkpoint and you said that there was traffic control,
16 was there any change now, both in terms of the
17 personnel and was there any procedural change other
18 than, in other words, traffic control?
19 A. No. At this first checkpoint, I think that
20 there was no significant difference. I noticed that
21 the reserve police officers were part of the patrols
22 which were on duty at that checkpoint in addition to
23 the active traffic policemen.
24 Q. What was the -- were the patrols increased?
25 A. Yes, by one or two police officers.
1 Usually -- that is, beforehand there were two officers
2 and now there would be typically three or four of them
3 at that checkpoint.
4 Q. Did they control those who passed on a
5 regular basis?
6 A. Almost every vehicle was stopped.
7 Q. And that was a change in relation to the
8 previous procedure?
9 A. Yes. That was the increased activity, as it
10 was called.
11 Q. Very well. There is a left turn towards
12 Kozarac on this road as you go towards Prijedor, and
13 where was the next checkpoint?
14 A. The next checkpoint was at the intersection
15 where the road turned off towards Kozarac, near the gas
16 station, a little before the gas station. That is
17 where the intersection is, and that is where the
18 checkpoint was establish. In my observation, this was
19 a larger checkpoint and better equipped, because there
20 was also a sort of container there, or some kind of a
21 hut, where people who manned the checkpoint could go in
22 and rest.
23 Q. What was the personnel at that checkpoint?
24 A. At first this checkpoint was a mixed one.
25 Q. You mean by the ethnic group or by the
2 A. Both. It was mixed both on the ethnic basis,
3 and it was mixed also because it was composed of both
4 the regular and the military police.
5 Q. The military police was up there as well?
6 A. No. I did not notice it.
7 Q. In this area, did you see another
9 A. Immediately to the right, looking towards
10 Prijedor, at the road which is turning off towards
11 Kozarac, perhaps 50 to 80 metres from there there was
12 another improvised checkpoint which could be observed
13 from this road.
14 Q. Was this again a mixed checkpoint in terms of
15 the ethnic composition and were people at that
16 checkpoint armed?
17 A. At that checkpoint people were armed with
18 regular police weapons, and I believe that it was an
19 exclusively Muslim checkpoint.
20 Q. You never passed that checkpoint, that is,
21 the checkpoint at the entrance of the Kozarac?
22 A. No. I never turned off there.
23 Q. The other checkpoint which you just described
24 on the highway, the mixed one, was the control regular
25 and how was the control conducted? Were they opening
1 trunks of the cars?
2 A. Yes. In addition to the check of personal
3 documents, there was also a detailed control. In other
4 words, they would look for the identification papers,
5 and then the vehicles were also searched, the trunks
6 were opened, and they also checked under the seats. I
7 experienced that several times. Sometimes it wasn't as
8 strict, because some of the personnel at the checkpoint
9 were experienced career police officers who knew me.
10 So I did not have the full check all the time.
11 Q. If I understood you correctly, you also were
12 subject to control at that checkpoint unless some of
13 the older policemen were there who recognised you?
14 A. Yes, but I had to stop in order for them to
15 see and recognise me.
16 Q. No one could pass by without being stopped,
17 regardless of the ethnic group?
18 A. I presume that this was so, but in my
19 experience, all the vehicles in front of me were always
20 stopped, and also the vehicles behind me.
21 Q. Very well. Now, if you went on to your
22 apartment in Pecani, was there another checkpoint?
23 A. Yes, there was another checkpoint at the
24 place called Orlovci. This was almost at the town of
25 Prijedor's city limits.
1 Q. What was the structure of the personnel at
2 that checkpoint?
3 A. That checkpoint was also manned by a mixed
4 police force, that is, the active and reserve police
6 Q. Did you also notice members of other ethnic
7 groups, Croats or Muslims, at Orlovci?
8 A. Not in April.
9 Q. So it was purely a Serbian checkpoint?
10 A. Yes. In April, after the second part -- in
11 the latter part of April, there were no Muslims there;
12 it was Serb.
13 Q. These are the checkpoints which you
14 personally saw, but there were other checkpoints at the
15 entrances of other villages in the area and towns.
16 A. Yes. In my conversations with people, and in
17 various contacts, you could learn that practically
18 every village had a checkpoint, or some kind of control
19 at the entrance to the village.
20 Q. Were these checkpoints also -- were people
21 asking whether these checkpoints also could foreshadow
22 some kind of a conflict?
23 A. Yes. People did ask questions about it and
24 talked about the potential for conflict.
25 Q. Did you feel uncomfortable there? Did it
1 create an atmosphere? You know, people asking to open
2 the trunk, to check your car.
3 A. Yes, it was very unpleasant, because shortly
4 before this, this never happened. There would be
5 occasional routine controls by the police, but now,
6 this was much more complicated. The waiting time was
7 longer and there were detailed searches, and this
8 caused certain people to be upset. The general
9 situation among the population was increasingly tense.
10 Q. Do you have any knowledge on whether members
11 of other ethnic groups were harassed at any of these
13 A. Yes, there were stories about that. At the
14 checkpoint in Kozarac, which was near that second
15 checkpoint, as I explained before, weapons were taken
16 from a soldier who was moving in that area.
17 Q. Was there another incident at the Hambarine
19 A. Yes. The incident in Hambarine became a
20 well-known fact later on. It was even in the media,
21 and it was in the press and on the radio, that this
22 incident occurred.
23 Q. Do you have any knowledge about what happened
24 at that checkpoint?
25 A. What I heard on the radio in Prijedor was as
1 follows: The reports said that several people had been
2 murdered there, that there were wounded too; that a
3 vehicle containing several military personnel, which
4 was moving in the direction of Ljubija, was fired upon
5 at Hambarine, and that those people were killed, as I
7 Q. Do you have information on who fired, since,
8 after all, you worked with the police?
9 A. I believe that in this report, which was
10 broadcast on Radio Prijedor, that the checkpoint was
11 led by Aziz Aliskovic, who was a long-time police
12 officer, I knew him, and who at that time was stationed
13 at Ljubija; that he was at that checkpoint and that men
14 from this patrol, which was on duty at this checkpoint,
15 that they fired and that he was a participant in this
17 Q. This was a police matter, and these police
18 had taken over the bodies. Do you have knowledge
19 whether their fire was returned and whether there were
20 injuries on the other side?
21 A. I never heard of that. I talked to my
22 colleagues about it, but I don't know any of the
23 specific detail because I was not part of the
25 Q. What happened after that incident in
1 Hambarine, in May?
2 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] My apologies. I
3 think that we have an omission in the transcript,
4 whether Aziz Aliskovic was a member of the Muslim
5 ethnic group, and the answer was yes.
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes,
7 Mr. Simic, you can ask your question again, please.
8 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Mr. Kvocka, what ethnic group did Aziz
10 Aliskovic belong?
11 A. Aziz Aliskovic was a Muslim by ethnicity.
12 Q. Very well. Let us go back to the response
13 relating to this incident. How did the police
14 respond? Because you had a double murder and two
15 people were injured in this incident.
16 A. I know very few details about this incident,
17 but, for the most part, it was said that the police had
18 taken steps, because at that time, the regular police
19 from Prijedor could not enter the village of
20 Hambarine. The police tried to find a solution. In
21 other words, they demanded that Aziz Aliskovic be
22 either turned over by the leadership in Hambarine, or
23 that he surrenders to the police.
24 Q. Did I understand you correctly, that the
25 public security station which had exclusive
1 jurisdiction in Hambarine had no longer authority in
2 the part of the municipality for which it had its
3 proper jurisdiction?
4 A. At that time, the police officers from
5 Prijedor could not enter the village of Hambarine in a
6 regular, normal way.
7 Q. In other words, if any criminal act was
8 committed in Hambarine, the police force could not go
9 in there to investigate.
10 A. That is correct.
11 Q. Who lived in Hambarine? Members of which
12 religious group?
13 A. The majority of the population was Muslim,
14 and perhaps it was almost 100 per cent Muslim.
15 Q. Was Mr. Aziz Aliskovic arrested?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Was there any response to the ultimatum for
18 him to surrender or be turned over?
19 A. Yes, there was a response following this
20 incident, maybe a day or two; I don't know exactly.
21 Combat operations had already begun, some kind of
22 military operations; that's how I would define them.
23 Q. In your apartment in Pecani, could you hear
24 any detonations or anything that is associated with
25 this kind of conflict?
1 A. Yes. One could hear detonations in Prijedor,
2 and I believe that the population, those who lived on
3 the top floors in high-rises, could actually see some
4 smoke from certain villages, and we talked about it.
5 Q. These burning houses, do you know how these
6 fires were produced?
7 A. I could not make any conclusions.
8 Q. What could you see?
9 A. I could see smoke, and I could hear
11 Q. Could these detonations also be heard in the
12 Omarska police station?
13 A. I believe that they practically could not be
14 heard from the Omarska police station.
15 Q. Do you have any knowledge about whether the
16 members of the Prijedor Public Security Station took
17 part in the armed operations at Hambarine?
18 A. People said that there was an intervention
19 platoon, which was a police unit, which at that time
20 probably did provide assistance to the military.
21 Q. This intervention platoon is frequently
22 mentioned. Under whose jurisdiction was it, and what
23 was it a part of?
24 A. It was a part of the Prijedor police station,
25 it was even located there, and everything pointed to
1 the fact that Simo Drljaca had full control over it.
2 Q. So the regular chain of command was bypassed;
3 that is, they were under the control of the commander
4 of the police station, as part of the public security
6 A. That was my impression.
7 Q. How did the conflict in Hambarine end?
8 A. To be honest, I don't know the details. A
9 day or two later, the situation calmed down. There
10 were no more explosions; nobody said that there was
11 anything going on there in terms of armed conflict.
12 People talked that the population of Hambarine had
13 pulled back, some away from Prijedor.
14 Q. So the result of this armed conflict was
15 already movement of the population away from their
17 A. Yes. People said that the population had
18 moved either towards the woods, or perhaps even to
19 points beyond that, such as larger cities like Bihac,
20 and others.
21 Q. Members of the Omarska police station, did
22 they in any way take part in armed conflict at
24 A. No.
25 Q. So that would imply that you had nothing to
1 do with that armed conflict there?
2 A. Yes, that is exactly what it implies.
3 Q. After the conflagration in Hambarine which
4 ended up, unfortunately, as it did, did the focal point
5 of conflict move to another area in the Prijedor
6 municipality, and was were there any hints about it in
7 the media or elsewhere?
8 A. Yes. Several days later, there were reports
9 on Radio Prijedor that another ultimatum was being
10 issued to Kozarac, a little bit different in terms of
11 the contents of it. It was the ultimatum for the armed
12 units in Kozarac to turn in their weapons.
13 Q. Did these ultimatums also contain certain
14 threats that something would happen should they not be
16 A. I believe that the ultimatum itself implies a
17 certain threat, but I believe that that was being
18 mentioned, that it was said that should the ultimatum
19 not be respected, that military intervention would
20 follow in order to implement the ultimatum.
21 Q. Is Kozarac part of the Prijedor municipality,
22 and where exactly is it located?
23 A. Yes. Kozarac is located approximately
24 halfway between Prijedor and Omarska.
25 Q. Is this one of the largest villages or local
1 communes in the territory of Prijedor municipality?
2 A. You could say that it is one of the largest,
3 if not the largest one.
4 Q. Was it densely populated, or do you have any
5 information about the size of the population that lived
7 A. Kozarac was pretty densely populated, because
8 its square area was not very large, but it was densely
9 populated. So it was an urban village, so to speak.
10 Long before the war, I went to Kozarac on a number of
11 occasions, so I knew it, but according to some
12 information, I believe it had a population of about
14 Q. Was that an affluent community? Were people
15 wealthy? Were they enterprising?
16 A. Yes. Kozarac was well known for its
17 population being fairly affluent. A number of people
18 worked abroad, and a number of them engaged in private
20 Q. What was the result of the failure to observe
21 the ultimatum?
22 A. A military operation followed.
23 Q. Could you recall about when the military
24 operation in Kozarac started and in what way?
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Since we
1 have arrived at Kozarac, perhaps we should make a
2 20-minute break for coffee. Would that be agreeable?
3 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] It is agreeable,
4 and we have about five or six questions about Kozarac,
5 and with that we will complete this area of
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Then after
8 the coffee break. Twenty-minute break.
9 --- Recess taken at 11.45 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 12.10 p.m.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Simic,
12 now that we have had our coffee, we can continue to go
13 on to the question of Kozarac.
14 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your
16 [The accused entered court]
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be
19 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 Q. Mr. Kvocka, to speed up things a little, we
21 are now leading up to the key situation. What happened
22 in Kozarac and what is your knowledge about that?
23 A. After the ultimatum that we spoke about
24 earlier on, I know that there was military operation in
25 Kozarac, that there was shooting there, explosions,
1 shelling, that there was a conflict of some kind over
2 there, and that, quite simply, Kozarac was taken
3 control of by the army. They just said -- the term
4 used was "the army."
5 Q. The police station of Omarska is relatively
6 close to Kozarac, is it not?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Did you, in any way whatsoever, as a
9 policeman -- that is to say, as an armed individual --
10 take part in an operation connected to Kozarac?
11 A. No. No, and I don't think any single
12 policeman from Omarska did. They did not have an
13 assignment of any kind, nor did they take part.
14 Q. Did you go to work regularly during those two
15 or three days that the operation lasted?
16 A. Yes, I did, but I couldn't go via Kozarac
17 itself, which was my usual route.
18 Q. What was your usual route?
19 A. The usual route was from Omarska to the
20 junction on the road to Banja Luka, and then you would
21 turn left and go through Kozarac into Prijedor. That
22 was my usual route.
23 Q. So it was the Banja Luka-Prijedor road.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. How did you then go to your workplace?
1 A. Well, on two occasions during those couple of
2 days, I had to take a different route to work, and that
3 was to go through Prijedor, across the Cela village,
4 and then you get near to the Tomasica mine and turn
5 left, take a left turn on a macadamised road surface,
6 and that leads you to Omarska.
7 Q. Mr. Kvocka, in view of the fact that the
8 ultimatums had been made, did the commander of the
9 Omarska police station, Mr. Meakic, call all the
10 policemen and inform you that there was to be a
11 conflict in Kozarac and that you would have any kind of
12 special assignments, activities, increased control, or
13 anything of that kind whatsoever?
14 A. No, he did not. Mr. Zeljko didn't say a word
15 about anything of that kind.
16 Q. The wartime activities in the Kozarac region
17 did not affect the work of the police station or the
18 precinct of the Omarska police station, did they?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Thank you. That rounds up the Kozarac topic,
21 which was an introduction to the events that were come
22 to pass.
23 Mr. Kvocka, in view of the indictment and the
24 charges and counts of the indictment, I should like to
25 attempt to clarify, for the purposes of the Trial
1 Chamber, your moves through your service as a policeman
2 and linked to your status as a police officer.
3 You went to primary school where?
4 A. In Omarska.
5 Q. After you completed your primary schooling,
6 where did you continue your education?
7 A. In Sarajevo.
8 Q. What school was that?
9 A. It was the Secondary School for Internal
10 Affairs. That is what it was called, its exact title.
11 Q. That means that it is secondary vocational
12 training; is that true?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. How long does education in Sarajevo last?
15 A. It lasts for three years. My generation went
16 to school for three years. That was how long that
17 school lasted, although there were some changes later
19 Q. Afterwards, it became a four-year school, did
20 it not?
21 A. Yes, but I was the last generation to do this
22 three-year course before it became a four-year course.
23 Q. In the course of your education, do you
24 recall your colleagues who were from the Prijedor and
25 Banja Luka region, whom you met while you were at
1 school and whom you were friends with?
2 A. In that generation -- in my generation, or in
3 my class, as we refer to it, I think there were four of
4 us from the Prijedor municipality.
5 Q. Could you tell us their names, please?
6 A. Well, in addition to myself, there was Milan
7 Gavrilovic, Dragan Babic, and Alija Pehadzic.
8 [Realtime transcript omitted the name "Pehadzic"].
9 Q. Was there anyone from Banja Luka?
10 A. From Banja Luka there was Jadranko Meakic.
11 He was educated there. There was some other people,
12 like Ivica Gagula, whom I remember. But I remember
13 Meakic better, because Meakic --
14 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we
15 apologise, but in the transcript there -- Alija
16 Pehadzic's surname was not recorded. So shall I ask
17 the question once again and to get round that in the
18 simplest possible way?
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] For your
20 information, I think there is a certain procedure. The
21 court reporters who do not manage to understand
22 correctly the name, they revise the record, together
23 with the interpreters, and enter the correct spellings
24 of the names.
25 So I should like what I have just said to be
1 confirmed. Isn't that so, please, Mr. Registrar?
2 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Yes,
3 Mr. President. The court reporters have a list with
4 the names on them, and if, in the course of the hearing
5 they don't manage to take down the names, they review
6 what has been recorded. And as you know, there is
7 always a certain period of time to review the
8 transcript and to make corrections if you wish.
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Perhaps we
10 should do what I suggested yesterday, and that is spell
11 the name. I think in that case, it would be much
12 easier for the court reporters to immediately record
13 the name correctly in the transcript.
14 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, but
15 the system doesn't seem to be working again.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Usher,
17 can you help, please? No one is getting the
19 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] It's all right
20 now. It's all right now. I'm sorry.
21 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] When we
22 talk about the technical department, perhaps these
23 omissions are inevitable.
24 Did you hear my suggestion and the comments I
25 made and what Mr. Registar said? Did you hear that,
1 Mr. Simic?
2 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] I'm afraid I
3 didn't, but I understand what was being said; I have
4 gathered what has been said.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Well,
6 that's fantastic; you're better than I am, because even
7 with the translation, sometimes I don't manage to
8 understand you.
9 In any event, don't make an issue out of this
10 problem. If you don't see a name on the monitor, there
11 is always a way of entering it later. If you wish to
12 have the name recorded correctly immediately, you need
13 to help the court reporters by spelling the name,
14 letter by letter. But I don't think this is a major
15 problem. I think you can continue. There's no
17 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your
19 Q. The composition of this School for Internal
20 Affairs, was it a multi-ethnical one?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Were the relationships between the students
23 good ones?
24 A. Looking at it from a nationalistic aspect,
25 yes, they were very proper and correct.
1 Q. What about this school in the training of its
2 cadres? Did it assert itself as a multi-ethnic
3 environment, in view of the political options that
5 A. Yes. Within the concept of the overall
6 system that prevailed in Yugoslavia on multi-ethnicity,
7 this was particularly stressed during the whole of our
8 education at the school, and particular emphasis was
9 laid on that aspect.
10 Q. Did you have friends among the Muslim
11 students and Croat students?
12 A. Yes. From all parts of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
13 Q. Mr. Kvocka, what kind of a student were you
14 at the academy?
15 A. I was very successful at the school, and I
16 was ranked among the ten best cadets, students, of the
18 Q. You mean among the ten best students of all
19 the forms that existed on your level, in your class?
20 A. Yes. And there were 450 students, roughly.
21 Q. Was there any system of stimulation,
22 encouragement, for you to get good results and grades
23 in the subjects taught, if you were to be a good
25 A. I'm afraid I didn't understand your
2 Q. Were you remunerated in any way? What made
3 you fight to be a better student and be among the first
4 ten, for example?
5 A. Yes, there were rewards at the end. If you
6 were among the ten best, there were several
7 possibilities offered to the good students. One of
8 these was that they had the right to choose the place
9 and town in Bosnia-Herzegovina where they would like to
10 work, because the other cadres were distributed
11 according to orders issued by the minister.
12 Q. Did you use the right to have this reward and
13 choose your place of work?
14 A. Yes, I chose Prijedor.
15 Q. And you began working in Prijedor?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. What was your first work post, and where did
18 you work?
19 A. My first work post was in the town of
20 Prijedor itself. I started working as an ordinary
22 Q. Did that belong to the police station of
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. There were no precincts?
1 A. No.
2 Q. What results did you have in your work as a
4 A. Well, the general assessment was, on the part
5 of my superiors, that I was fairly successful in my
7 Q. Who did you usually go on patrol with?
8 Because it is standard practice that policemen do
9 patrol work two by two.
10 A. I worked frequently with some of my older
11 colleagues, more experienced ones, because I was a
12 beginner, of course. But already after several months,
13 I began working with my colleagues, that is to say,
14 those of us cadets who had completed our schooling
16 Q. Did you continue your friendship with
17 Mr. Alija?
18 A. Yes. We would go on our duties together on
19 many occasions.
20 Q. How long did you work in Prijedor?
21 A. I worked in Prijedor up until September
23 Q. What happened then?
24 A. What happened then was that the Federal
25 Ministry for Internal Affairs, that is to say, the
1 federal SUP, as it was called then, was searching for
2 cadres from the municipal SUPs who would be prepared,
3 trained in Belgrade, to perform certain functions
4 related to providing security for diplomatic and
5 consular offices abroad.
6 Q. They were the representative offices of the
7 then Yugoslavia, were they not?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Were there any set criteria as to the kind of
10 individuals who would be taken on for training for this
11 particular work, which was a highly demanding job, much
12 more so than being an ordinary policeman in a small
14 A. Yes. The first condition that you had to
15 meet was that my immediate superior should recommend me
16 for a job of this kind. And later on, on two
17 occasions, we had to pass psychophysical controls and
18 tests; the first time in Sarajevo and the second time
19 in Belgrade.
20 Q. Were these the best policemen chosen?
21 Because for that time, this was a challenge for every
22 ordinary policeman, to work in a European metropolis;
23 it was a closed system.
24 A. Well, the very fact that we had to undergo
25 examinations and controls, I can only assume that they
1 were looking for the best people.
2 Q. How many people were chosen for this from
4 A. Two. There were a number of candidates, but
5 two of us ended up doing this training and working.
6 Q. The name of the colleague that went with you
7 for this training, can you tell us?
8 A. It was Aziz Orascanin. He did not go with me
9 at the same time, so I had to think about his name.
10 Aziz Orascanin.
11 Q. What was he by ethnicity?
12 A. He was a Muslim.
13 Q. So there too, these criteria had to be met.
14 A. Yes, it would appear so.
15 Q. How long did you spend in Paris?
16 A. I spent exactly two years in Paris, to the
18 Q. Was your work assessed as successful by the
19 security services that controlled the security and your
20 work in security in Paris?
21 A. Yes. When I returned to Belgrade, I was told
22 that I had done this job well.
23 Q. Did this result in negotiations to send you
24 to some other country for another four years?
25 A. Yes, it did. While I was in -- that is to
1 say, in Belgrade, an inspector, working in the federal
2 SUP and in charge of these affairs, said that if I so
3 desired, that I could change the country I was working
4 in and the town, and that I could continue working in
5 the security detail in another country after spending
6 several months in Belgrade as an interim.
7 Q. Did they mention any country?
8 A. Several countries were mentioned, and he
9 recommended Brazil.
10 Q. You did not accept that proposal. Tell us
11 why, please.
12 A. After I had given it some thought, I did not
13 decide to take up the offer, because in Prijedor, and
14 actually in Omarska, I already had a family, had
15 started a family. I had my mother and father, who were
16 poor people, and I considered that it was up to me to
17 help them as much as I could, and to be there to help
19 Q. Were you married?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Did your wife think that you ought to stay
22 together, or did she want you to go off?
23 A. She asked that we should stay together,
24 because it was not a job that offered her the
25 possibility of her going with me.
1 Q. When you returned from Paris, where did you
2 continue working?
3 A. When I returned from Paris, I began working
4 in Omarska straight away.
5 Q. Was that a precinct or a police station at
6 the time?
7 A. It was a police precinct.
8 Q. What jobs did you perform?
9 A. I worked as a policeman.
10 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] To speed matters
11 up a little, we are going to talk about the
12 transformation of the MUP into the SJB, that is to say,
13 the 31st of December, 1989. I should like to refer to
14 certain documents for this purpose, and they are DP3,
15 document DP3, and I'd like to ask the usher to come up
16 and get it.
17 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] This exhibit
18 will be D8/1 for the Serbian version; D8/1A for the
19 English version.
20 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] I do apologise.
21 I thought we would place the English version on the
22 ELMO so that the Trial Chamber could follow the text,
23 and the Prosecution, of course, as well.
24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] It's fine
25 now. Thank you very much, Mr. Simic. You may
2 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you have before you a decision
4 dated the 21st of March, 1990, and it states here that
5 you performed the duties and tasks of "the head of the
6 local patrol sector in the Banja Luka Security Services
7 Centre, the Prijedor Public Security Station, the
8 Prijedor Police Station," bearing in mind everything
9 you explained to us yesterday as to its setup.
10 Could you please tell us now what that
11 means? What does "head of the local patrol sector"
12 mean? What are his authorisations and competencies?
13 A. The head of the local patrol sector in our
14 service meant that one policeman, one police officer,
15 had been given the assignment of working in a certain
16 sector or region, so in fact it is a microregion, which
17 is covered by the overall police precinct, department.
18 Q. So the head of the local patrol sector within
19 the department of the territorial police station has
20 the assignment of controlling a certain territory, a
21 certain sector; is that right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Could you tell us the territory that you had
24 authority over, according to this decision?
25 A. I was assigned four small villages.
1 Q. Could you give us their names, please?
2 A. They are Maricka, Krivaja, Jelicka, and
4 Q. Does this formulation imply that you have
5 superiority over any policeman in the station, or did
6 it mean that you were just in charge of a given
7 territory under your authority?
8 A. No. What it meant was that I was in charge,
9 in a way, for the area comprising those four villages,
10 and that I would go there most often to do my police
12 Q. The principle is that there are two policemen
13 on patrol all the time. So was there always another
14 policeman there, or were you distributed in a different
16 A. No. We had a daily schedule that the
17 commander of the department compiled, and that second
18 policeman would be changed, the second policeman on the
19 beat or patrol.
20 Q. That meant that you would always be assigned
21 to that particular village and you would be assisted in
22 this according to a daily schedule compiled by the
23 commander; is that correct?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. They are the patrol duties that you described
1 to us yesterday?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Was that what you did exclusively, or could
4 you do shift work and security detailing as well?
5 A. In the meantime, I was assigned, according to
6 the commander's schedule, to do shift work and security
8 Q. As the head of the local patrol sector, did
9 you have occasion to be assigned to go with some other
10 head of the local patrol sector to another region,
11 where this other policeman was head of his local patrol
13 A. There was the possibility for this kind of
14 combination, particularly during the time of holiday
15 time or when somebody was on sick leave, one of the
16 policemen were on sick leave. Then the commander would
17 make up a schedule of that kind, because we always
18 lacked the next cadres.
19 Q. At that time, Mr. Meakic worked with you, did
20 he not?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. What was his status?
23 A. Meakic was a younger policeman than myself,
24 but after spending just one or two years on the job, he
25 acquired the same status and became head of the patrol
2 Q. What sector did Mr. Meakic cover?
3 A. Mr. Meakic covered four or five villages like
4 me. I don't know the exact number, but I can name some
5 of them if you want.
6 Q. Please do so.
7 A. Petrov Gaj, Kevljani, Lamovita, Bistrica.
8 Q. Mr. Kvocka, this decision is a good
9 opportunity for us to expand upon another very
10 important issue for the events that were to follow,
11 both for you, for Mr. Radic, and for Mr. Kos.
12 In what way were individuals appointed, who
13 worked in the police station, from the lowest up to
14 ministerial level? Let's put it that way.
15 A. There was some kind of procedure for that,
16 which I do not know in detail, but what I do know is
17 that I would receive a decision signed by the Minister,
18 and most probably this was done at the proposal of some
19 of my direct superiors, I assume.
20 Q. In the right-hand corner of this decision, it
21 says "Deputy of the Republican Secretariat for Internal
22 Affairs, Matko Topalovic."
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Does that mean that your assignment as head
25 of the patrol sector, as a patrol policeman, if you
1 like, was signed by the Deputy Minister?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Was that standard practice?
4 A. Yes, it was.
5 Q. So the exclusive authority for doing this was
6 the Minister, or somebody assigned by the Minister to
7 act in his place?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Thank you, Mr. Kvocka. We'll now go on to
10 another decision of this kind, DP4.
11 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Exhibit D9/1,
12 and D9/1A for the English version.
13 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you have before you a very
15 important decision. In the upper left-hand corner,
16 would you read out the date of this decision?
17 A. Date is the 17th of June, 1992.
18 Q. Thank you. Was that the day you were in the
19 investigating centre or prisoners' camp? It doesn't
20 matter what we call it.
21 A. Yes. At that time I was working there too.
22 Q. According to this decision, I can see that
23 you were once again assigned to the position of head of
24 the patrol sector, or regional patrol sector leader.
25 You were once again working in the CSB of Banja Luka,
1 the police station of Prijedor, the police station
2 department of the police or militia of Omarska.
3 A. Yes. That is what it says in this decision.
4 Q. Does this decision, in fact, mean -- which
5 was given when you were in the investigating centre of
6 Omarska, does not change your status in any way in the
7 police force?
8 A. Yes, that is correct.
9 Q. Does that mean that you continued to be the
10 head of the patrol sector, or the policeman in charge
11 of the region which comprised the four villages which
12 you mentioned?
13 A. Yes, that is correct.
14 Q. Mr. Kvocka, compared to the other decision,
15 there was some changes in this particular decision, and
16 they different from your explanations. The institution
17 which adopted this decision, it says that it is the
18 Ministry of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina,
19 Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Security Service
20 Centre Banja Luka. That is the heading in the upper
21 left-hand corner of this document.
22 A. Yes, I can see that.
23 Q. Does this mean that this decision was
24 compiled and taken after a portion of the Ministry of
25 Internal Affairs was separated in the territory where
1 you were controlled by the Serbs?
2 A. Yes. This decision was made after that
3 separation and division.
4 Q. As a signature, we do not see somebody from
5 the Ministry, or the Minister, but I can see that the
6 signature is that of Mr. Stojan Zupljanin, head of the
7 centre of Banja Luka.
8 A. Yes, that is what it states.
9 Q. That was a novelty, was it not?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Mr. Kvocka, did you give thought to this
12 difference and how come that now Mr. Zupljanin, as head
13 of the centre of the security services, is signing this
14 decision rather than the Minister?
15 A. Yes, I did. It is interesting to note this,
16 because until then, that was not the procedure that was
17 followed. But in the preamble to this decision it says
18 -- and if necessary, I can read it out.
19 Q. As far as I understand, it says that: "The
20 Minister of the Ministry of the Interior of the Serbian
21 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, by a decision published
22 in the Official Gazette, has authorised heads of
23 security services centres to make such decisions."
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Can you explain why this change?
1 A. I think that by then war operations were
2 already quite extensive throughout the territory of
3 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and connections had been
4 interrupted between the security centres, public
5 security stations, and the Ministry.
6 Q. So the authorised person to make decisions
7 about the appointment of policemen in the area covered
8 by the security services centre is assigned to the head
9 of that centre, in this case Zupljanin?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. So let us repeat. In the course of June, you
12 continued to be head of the patrol sector, and you
13 continued to do the duties which you had assigned to
14 you ever since the 1st of January, 1990?
15 A. Yes, that is right.
16 Q. Thank you. We now come to Exhibit DP5.
17 THE REGISTRAR: Defence Exhibit D10/1, D10/1A
18 for the English version.
19 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you have before you a decision
21 dated the 27th of October, 1993. To shorten things, it
22 says again that -- Mr. Kvocka Miroslav, leader of the
23 patrol sector, security service centre Banja Luka,
24 public security station Prijedor, police station
25 Prijedor. Is that correct?
1 A. Yes, it is.
2 Q. This decision, in terms of the obligations
3 implied or duties implied, does it differ, in any
4 sense, from your duties according to previous decisions
5 in 1992 and now again in 1993?
6 A. No. Nothing has changed. I continue to be
7 patrol sector leader.
8 Q. Is there any change regarding the territory
9 covered by you?
10 A. No. The same villages.
11 Q. But here it says: "Police station
13 A. In view of the fact that the police
14 department of Omarska is the lowest organisational
15 unit, I think that in this decision it wasn't
16 specifically named.
17 Q. My question, Mr. Kvocka, is: Where were you
18 working in 1993? In what territory? I'm talking about
20 A. I was working in the Omarska police
22 Q. So you returned to Omarska after you left
23 Omarska. I see that fatigue has caught up with you.
24 Please concentrate.
25 A. I really do apologise. You have confused me
1 with these numerous decisions.
2 Q. Never mind. Take it easy. We have plenty of
3 time. Where did you work in 1993? In what town, what
4 planet, which area?
5 A. In Prijedor.
6 Q. What were you doing? What were you?
7 A. Patrol sector leader.
8 Q. What was your patrol sector?
9 A. I did not have a patrol sector.
10 Q. What was the gist of your duties? What were
11 your duties? Was there some kind of an incident
12 platoon or something?
13 A. No. At the time I was working on shift
15 Q. Your duties were still at the same
16 hierarchical level, at the same rank?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Can we go on now to the next document,
19 please. This is document D6.
20 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Defence
21 Exhibit D11/1, D11/1A for the English version.
22 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Mr. Kvocka, we have now a new decision,
24 another decision, dated the 1st of September, 1994. By
25 this decision, you are appointed to shift head or
1 leader; is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Who issued this decision?
4 A. The Minister of Internal Affairs of Republika
6 Q. Mr. Kvocka, will you tell us now what are the
7 duties of a shift leader, and does this mark a major
8 change in relation to your previous duties?
9 A. One could say that this marked a certain
10 change in the type of policing duties I had and the
11 method in which those duties were performed.
12 Q. What were your tasks and duties? Were you
13 assigned certain men over whom you had authority as a
15 A. Let me tell you that even with this decision
16 I did not gain any authority over others. This
17 workplace implied that the shift leader took care of
18 the implementation of the daily schedule drawn up by
19 the station commander for that day. He takes care that
20 all duties envisaged by the commander for that day are
21 actually carried out.
22 Q. If I understand you correctly, a shift is
23 assigned certain duties, you, among others, and it is
24 your responsibility to make sure that those assignments
25 are carried out.
1 A. Exactly so.
2 Q. Were you entitled to take any steps, to
3 discipline another policeman, to give orders? Because
4 you are responsible to the commander for the execution
5 of tasks.
6 A. Yes, that was possible then, at that stage.
7 Q. Mr. Kvocka, is this the first time that you
8 acquired a position of superiority and authority over
9 several people in your whole career? To make it
10 simpler, following the decision, you became responsible
11 for the work of so-and-so. So if a certain person did
12 not carry out his duty, then Mr. Kvocka could be called
13 to task.
14 A. Yes, it could be put that way, because in
15 this case, the commander first asks the shift leader,
16 in this case, me, about everything that is taking
17 place; about the personnel, whether they have reported
18 on duty or not, and any events that may have occurred
19 in the area covered by that personnel, by those
21 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] I apologise,
22 Mr. President. I omitted to ask a question a moment
23 ago referring to the previous decision of 1993.
24 Q. Was it signed by the minister? That is my
1 A. Yes, it was. The previous decision, dated
2 the 27th of October, 1993, was signed by the Minister
3 of Internal Affairs, Tomo Kovac.
4 Q. Does that mean that this decision is also an
5 indication of a restoration of the previous procedure,
6 that all decisions are signed by the minister or a
7 person authorised to do so on his behalf?
8 A. Yes.
9 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Let us look very
10 briefly at two letters. Could they be placed on the
11 ELMO and distributed, please? These are documents DP7.
12 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] These are
13 Defence Exhibits D12/1; D12/1A for the English
15 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you have a letter before you,
17 dated 6 November 1998. You have had occasion to read
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. By this letter, the Ministry of the Interior,
21 the Department for Legal and Personnel Affairs in
22 Bijeljina, informs us of a chronology of events. Are
23 the references made in this letter true?
24 A. Yes, all of them.
25 Q. There is a certain detail that I should like
1 to clarify with you. It says that your work
2 relationship was terminated by consensus, in one of
3 these paragraphs.
4 A. Let me find it, please. Yes.
5 Q. Was it by agreement? And why did you ask to
6 be relieved from your duties in the police?
7 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Paragraph 7, Your
8 Honours, I'm referring to.
9 A. It says here that on the 1st of November,
10 1996, my employment was terminated by mutual
12 Q. Tell Their Honours; it is your duty to tell
13 the truth, tell them freely why you did this.
14 A. I stopped working on this date in the police
15 in Prijedor because an order had arrived from my
16 commander, who informed me that I could no longer work
17 in the police.
18 Q. Why?
19 A. The explanation he gave me was that
20 international police forces stationed in Prijedor would
21 not allow me to continue working in the internal
22 affairs bodies, that is, in the police.
23 Q. Was this linked to the public announcement of
24 the indictment of this Honourable Tribunal?
25 A. Yes, that was the reason, because the
1 indictment had already been made public.
2 Q. And you yourself submitted a request to
3 terminate your employment.
4 A. That was on the advice of my superior.
5 Q. Did you find this hard to do, since you spent
6 your whole career in the police force and that you were
7 considered one of the best policemen in Prijedor
9 A. It was very hard for me. I was very sad not
10 to be able to spend a few more years in the police and
11 to end my career in the police force normally.
12 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] I should now like
13 to ask the usher to help me tender DP8, which we shall
14 comment upon very briefly.
15 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Defence
16 Exhibit D13/1; D13/1A for the English version.
17 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you have before you a letter
19 addressed by your public security station, where you
20 had spent virtually your entire working lifetime,
21 though it changed its name occasionally. In a sense,
22 they are responding to some questions that we had for
23 them, and I should like to draw your attention to point
24 3, paragraph 1 of this letter.
25 Were you ever, in this period under review,
1 appointed -- or could you have been appointed to any
2 position of authority, of a superior? I am talking
3 about June 1992.
4 A. No, I was never appointed or named to take
5 any kind of leadership role or superior position.
6 Q. Was there any legal possibility for anyone to
7 appoint you to such a position in the Prijedor police
9 A. No.
10 Q. Does that mean that in 1992, you performed
11 the duties of patrol sector leader?
12 A. Yes.
13 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I
14 only have one more segment to cover regarding the
15 activities of my client. Perhaps this would be an
16 appropriate moment for a break, because, after all,
17 this does require a great deal of concentration. We
18 will be through with this area very quickly. We will
19 be discussing his obligations as a military conscript,
20 in view of his status as a policeman.
21 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes,
22 Mr. Simic, your suggestion seems to me quite
23 appropriate, reasonable, and sensible. So we are going
24 to have a break. I see in my notes that we should have
25 a 20-minute break.
1 --- Recess taken at 1.08 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 1.35 p.m.
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be
5 Mr. Simic, you may continue.
6 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Mr. Kvocka, when you finished your secondary
8 police academy, were you obliged to go and serve your
9 national duty, which was an obligation for all men of
11 A. No, I did not go.
12 Q. Why?
13 A. I was under no obligation to do so, because
14 the law on the military duty provided that the cadets
15 of the secondary police academy were not obliged to
16 serve national duty.
17 Q. Were you still under obligation, according to
18 the laws, the federal and the republican laws, to
19 comply with the military service?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. What were your obligations?
22 A. My duty consisted in reporting to the
23 Ministry for Defence.
24 Q. Did the Ministry have its offices from the
25 federal to the municipal levels?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. So did your duty consist in your reporting to
3 the municipal office?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Did you do so?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Did you receive the wartime assignment?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Were you told what was your assignment at
10 that time?
11 A. Yes, I was told that.
12 Q. Could you tell us then what that assignment
13 was so that we all know?
14 A. My wartime assignment was a military
16 Q. Were you assigned to a particular unit?
17 Because every military conscript, regardless of his
18 duty, also is assigned a unit where he is to report.
19 A. Yes. That was to be the police station or
21 Q. Were you told what your VES was? VES was the
22 code for your speciality?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Do you recall what it was?
25 A. 11107 is what I think the code number is.
1 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I
2 do not have the originals here. The documents had been
3 submitted to the Tribunal. I'm going to give the
4 explanation, but it's -- our marking is DP12.
5 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Exhibit
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Excuse me,
8 Mr. Simic, for interrupting you.
9 Mr. Registrar, the previous one -- previous
10 exhibit was D11. Am I mistaken? You said that this
11 exhibit was D14.
12 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Yes,
13 Mr. President. The previous Exhibit was D13/1.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well.
15 Thank you. I beg your pardon.
16 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you see a letter before you which
18 the Ministry of Defence of Republika Srpska, the
19 Prijedor department, sent to the government of the
20 Republika Srpska, and the government of the Republika
21 Srpska requested this information on behalf of the
22 Tribunal. As item 2, you see the name "Miroslav
23 Kvocka." Is this correct information, that your
24 wartime code is 9121 in Prijedor?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And is it correct that this number --
2 A. Actually, the number is not correct, because
3 one digit is missing.
4 Q. It should be 11107.
5 A. That is correct. It should be 11107. One
6 digit is missing.
7 Q. Is it correct that you were a military
8 policeman? That was to be your wartime duty?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Kvocka.
11 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] I would like to
12 tender Exhibit number 53, please.
13 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Defence
14 Exhibit D15/1; D15/1A for the English version.
15 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you see a document which is a
17 certificate by the Ministry of Defence, the personnel
18 department, which gives us an interpretation of the
19 code VES 11107, which is defined as a reserve member of
20 the military police, and the rank is "private." The
21 VES code does not comprise any meaning of a rank of
22 officer or superior in other countries; it marks only a
23 regular private soldier?
24 A. That is correct.
25 Q. Does that correspond to what you knew at the
1 time and what you were told when you were tasked with
2 military duty as a conscript?
3 A. Yes, that is correct. And it is signed by
4 the assistant minister.
5 Q. Very well, Mr. Kvocka. The war in the
6 territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina unfortunately lasted
7 for a very long time and produced the consequences that
8 we have all suffered through. Throughout this war, as
9 a member or -- how shall I put it? -- as a military
10 conscript, were you under obligation to carry out your
11 duties relating to your wartime assignment?
12 A. Yes. I was under obligation to comply with
14 Q. Throughout the conflict, from its beginning
15 to the end, were you always a member of the police code
16 number VES 11107?
17 A. Yes.
18 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] I would now like
19 to tender 959, and I have the original.
20 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Defence
21 Exhibit D16/1; D16/1A for the English version.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Simic,
23 please excuse me. What is the number that you attach
24 to this document?
25 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] 959.
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Mr. Kvocka, you have an official certificate
4 issued, in similar cases, by the Ministry for various
5 purposes. Here it states that you -- that in 1992, you
6 were an active-duty police officer in the Prijedor
7 Public Security Station. Did you have any other status
8 other than is mentioned in this document?
9 A. What is stated in this document is correct.
10 You said -- you mentioned 1990?
11 Q. No. I mentioned 1992. This is the only year
12 I'm referring to.
13 A. In 1992 I was an active-duty police officer,
14 as it is stated here.
15 Q. Thank you. Let us sum up this. So according
16 to the military assignments and military duties, in
17 1992 you had no other status than that of a military
18 policeman, that is, a policeman in your official
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Before we move on to the central area of our
22 questioning, you just mentioned that it was very hard
23 for you to leave the job which you were very attached
25 A. Yes, and I still have difficulties in coming
1 to terms with it.
2 Q. The news of your arrest, did it produce an
3 incident in the Sanski Most area? I just want to touch
4 on it and then move on.
5 A. Several days after my arrest, I received
6 information that in Sanski Most my wife's brother was
7 also arrested by the local police there and detained
8 for some 20 hours.
9 Q. What is your wife's brother's name?
10 A. Rizak Crnalic, called Rica.
11 Q. What was stated as the reason for his arrest
12 by the police in the Bihac-Sanski Most canton, that is,
13 the local police in Sanski Most?
14 A. He explained to my wife later on, after he
15 saw her, that on that evening he had consumed some
16 alcohol, that he went around Sanski Most cursing
17 President Izetbegovic, and that he was then detained by
18 the police there.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Now, Your
21 Honours, I want to move on to the events that we're all
22 most interested in, and I'll proceed without further
24 Q. Mr. Kvocka, when did you first have contact
25 with the detention centre in Omarska?
1 A. In the night of 28/29 or perhaps the night
2 before. I am unable to clear it up in my mind. I was
3 duty officer in the precinct in Omarska.
4 Q. Where were you on duty?
5 A. I was inside the building, in the facility
6 itself, in the duty room.
7 Q. Did you have any communication means as any
8 other policeman?
9 A. Yes, a radio transmitter.
10 Q. Were there any other police officers who were
11 also on duty with you?
12 A. There were two additional reserve officers
13 with me.
14 Q. Can you recall their names?
15 A. No, not at the moment.
16 Q. Were there any patrols who had come back from
17 patrols as one of the ways in which police duties were
18 conducted that night?
19 A. I believe that the patrols which had been out
20 in the field had already come back that night, and some
21 of them may have only come back in the morning, but
22 they were out in the field.
23 Q. What happened between 28th and 29th, or
24 perhaps 27th and 28th?
25 A. Sometime around 0200 --
1 Q. This was the month of May, 1992. Can we go
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Can you please repeat the exact date and
5 month so that we can resolve any lingering dilemmas?
6 A. That was either the night of the 28th/29th or
7 the night before, that is, of May 1992. This was when
8 I was the officer on duty in the police precinct in
9 Omarska, with two reserve police officers. Somewhere
10 between 0200 and 0300 we received notice through the
12 Q. Who called you?
13 A. It was Dusan Jankovic.
14 Q. Could we repeat who Dusan Jankovic was?
15 A. At that time he was the chief for the police.
16 Q. And what did he say?
17 A. He told me to immediately come to him, and he
18 told me that he was in the area of Omarska mining
20 Q. Did he ask for the commander beforehand?
21 A. Yes. He asked whether the commander was
22 there, by chance.
23 Q. And what did you say?
24 A. I said that he was not. The commander stayed
25 on the premises very seldom.
1 Q. You said that this was radioed in.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. What did you do after receiving this request?
4 A. Given this order, I got into my vehicle and I
5 went to where he said he was.
6 Q. You knew where the Omarska complex was.
7 A. Yes. Yes, I knew about it.
8 Q. When you arrived there, what did you find?
9 A. When I passed through the gate, through the
10 main gate, it was dark, as I said, and I found Dusan
11 Jankovic and Milutin Cadjo, who were sitting in an
12 official vehicle in front of the main administration
13 building of the mining complex.
14 Q. Did they address you?
15 A. Yes, they did. I told him that I was coming
16 in response to his order.
17 MR. SIMIC [Interpretation] In order for us to
18 be able to follow everything better, I'm going to
19 interrupt this line of questioning, and I would like
20 Mr. Kvocka to describe for us the layout of this
21 facility to where he came so that we can all be better
22 oriented about who was where. With your permission,
23 Your Honours. Thank you.
24 Q. So, Mr. Kvocka, you arrived on the premises
25 of the compound, of the mining complex. You passed
1 through the main gate.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And where is the main gate?
4 A. It is about 1.5 kilometres from the main
5 administration building.
6 Q. Is there any kind of reception area at the
7 front gate?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. When you arrived there, was there any
10 security there?
11 A. There was one guard, which was a security
12 guard employed by the company.
13 Q. So there were no police officers there.
14 A. No.
15 Q. And now you entered the Omarska complex. The
16 model in front of you, does it reflect accurately what
17 you remember? The front entrance is close to
18 Ms. Hollis, if she will excuse me.
19 A. Yes. This model reflects what the complex
20 looked like, that is, what the buildings in the complex
22 Q. So the first building that is closest to the
23 Prosecution team, what is it called?
24 A. Yes. That is the administration building,
25 and that is the low-rise building.
1 Q. Is there a restaurant that was part of this
2 administration building?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Is it towards the small White House?
5 A. I cannot see it.
6 Q. Could you please rise and see if you can see
7 it from there.
8 A. Yes, I can see it now. I see the area of the
9 restaurant. That would be the lower portion of that
11 Q. Well, perhaps you can actually show us so
12 that we can all better understand.
13 A. This here [indicates] was referred to as the
14 administrative building of the complex.
15 Q. And there's a restaurant within its
17 A. Yes. There's a slightly separated facility,
18 which was the restaurant, the canteen.
19 Q. Are the walls of the building glass
21 A. Yes. Along here [indicates].
22 Q. In the front of the building, were there any
24 A. In the front, you mean?
25 Q. In front of you, I mean.
1 A. Yes. Here [indicates], there was a small
2 garage here.
3 Q. And the lower part of the ground floor?
4 A. In the lower part of the administrative
5 building, I'm not quite sure; I don't know what its
6 purpose was.
7 Q. While the investigating centre was there, was
8 it in operation?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. On the floor above the garage, and the area
11 that you do not know what purpose it served, what is
13 A. On the storey above, there was a series of
15 Q. Were they on the left- and right-hand side?
16 A. Yes. There's a corridor along here, and on
17 both sides of the corridor were the offices.
18 Q. Were these offices where the interviews took
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Let us now move on to the pista. What was
22 that area in the Omarska complex? Where was it?
23 A. We used the term "pista" for the area in
24 between this large building and the administration
1 Q. Was it a concrete floor?
2 A. Yes, all this was actually asphalt.
3 Q. Now let us look at the big building. What
4 was that within the complex?
5 A. Could I just add one thing, please. At that
6 time, there were sort of concrete vases or planters
7 which were located here [indicates], so the pista was
8 delineated in that way.
9 Q. While it was the investigating centre, were
10 they there all the time?
11 A. Yes, they were.
12 Q. Let us now move on to this big building.
13 What was that in the overall complex of Omarska?
14 A. While the mine was operational, these were
15 workshops, as far as I know, and garages for the
16 heavy-duty vehicles.
17 Q. That building, did it have a storey?
18 A. Yes, it did.
19 Q. What was on the upper storey?
20 A. Well, there were several premises, but I
21 didn't go in there. There were two or three different
23 Q. The small house, painted white, and it is
24 referred to as the White House, was it always there?
25 A. Yes, it was.
1 Q. So this corresponds to where it was. How big
2 was that White House?
3 A. Well, looking at it on this scale, it was
4 much smaller compared to the other buildings. I don't
5 know the exact dimensions.
6 Q. Was it painted white?
7 A. Yes, it was.
8 Q. What about this building over here, which is
9 on par with the white building? What was that?
10 A. That facility is one that I noticed as being
11 there, but I never went into it and I don't know what
12 purpose it served.
13 Q. You do not know what purpose it served.
14 A. No, I do not. Even when the mining complex
15 was operational, I don't know what purpose it served.
16 Q. There was another little building or facility
17 with a flat roof. This end.
18 A. Are you thinking of this one
19 here [indicates]?
20 Q. Yes, I am.
21 A. Yes, I did notice that facility, but once
22 again, I cannot say what it was used for. I don't
24 Q. As a policeman, in performing your regular
25 duties, did you go into this Omarska complex
2 A. Yes, I did, on several occasions.
3 Q. This layout corresponds to the existing
4 situation on the ground, does it not?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. So we will be able to adapt some of the
7 details you have given to questions relating to that
8 general area, complex, and compound.
9 A. Yes, you will.
10 Q. Thank you. Did you report to the commander
11 Cadjo and Jankovic when you arrived?
12 A. Yes, I did.
13 Q. What did they tell you?
14 A. The chief of police, Dule Jankovic, told me
15 that I was to go back to the police department, or
16 precinct, and that I should try and find Zeljko Meakic;
17 that I should tell him, convey to him, that according
18 to a schedule and plan of some kind for raising the
19 reserve police force, that he should do this, activate
20 the reserve police force, which was, at the time, not
21 in the department or precinct. And afterwards, that
22 these men should be brought to the compound, to the
23 mining compound, and that there would be a man there to
24 receive him and to explain to him what he was supposed
25 to do next.
1 Q. Did you receive any kind of information as to
2 the nature of the assignment on that particular
4 A. Then? No, I don't.
5 Q. So you returned to the precinct, and what did
6 you do then?
7 A. When I returned to the precinct, as there was
8 a list of couriers in the precinct and the assignments
9 of the duty officer, I was to see that the assignments
10 were carried out by those couriers to round up the
11 people, to collect the people that Jankovic had
13 Q. Let's make a slight digression here,
14 Mr. Kvocka, if we may. You said a moment ago, you said
15 that "Mr. Jankovic told me," that was the sentence that
16 you used, that Mr. Meakic, according to a plan on
17 raising the -- calling up the reserve policemen, that
18 he should act. Now, when he used this word "plan," did
19 you think he meant a plan with regard to the
20 functioning of Omarska, or the plan of work to call up
21 the reserve police force?
22 A. It was my impression that he meant that we
23 should proceed according to the general plan to call up
24 the reserve police force, the policemen who were at
25 home, to call them up, and nothing else.
1 Q. So you did not gain the impression that he
2 actually meant a plan which was in any way linked to
3 that particular situation, but that it was a general
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Thank you. Were you able to send the courier
7 on his way to collect and inform the people, the
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Did they begin to gather?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. What was the time? When did they begin to
14 A. Well, people began to gather at around 6.00,
15 6.30, 7.00 p.m.
16 Q. Were you able to contact Mr. Meakic, in view
17 of the telephone communications and all the rest?
18 A. Well, sometime around 7.00, he himself turned
20 Q. Did you take these policemen off to the
21 business complex of Omarska?
22 A. Yes, we did go there, and in several tours,
23 because we had a transportation problem.
24 Q. When you arrived, what did the police do?
25 A. Which do you mean? You mean the police force
1 that had just arrived?
2 Q. Yes.
3 A. Well, there was a man there, or perhaps two
4 men who received us there, and they told us that we
5 would be replacing them. One of these people who met
6 us took over the people who had arrived and deployed
7 them, distributed them, around these facilities, these
8 buildings here [indicates].
9 Q. Does that mean that there were already some
10 people there, and did you see those people when you had
11 contact with Mr. Jankovic? Was there something
12 extraordinary, out of the ordinary? Were there buses
13 there, or was it just a compound as we can see it in
14 front of us?
15 A. When I arrived by invitation from Jankovic,
16 his vehicle, and I could have shown this a moment ago,
17 his vehicle was at the entrance to the administration
18 building. It was night-time, but several buses could be
19 seen. Perhaps there were ten buses in all, and they
20 were parked in two rows. The first two or three buses
21 which I saw -- actually, they were the first two or
22 three buses in the rear, the ones that I was able to
23 see, were empty, but there were buses which were full.
24 There were people in the buses.
25 Q. Did you notice any people outside the buses,
1 that they were being taken off somewhere, or anything
2 like that?
3 A. No.
4 Q. When you returned and when you were met by
5 the police representatives, do you know who they were?
6 A. At that time, we didn't know who they were,
7 no. All we saw was that they were uniformed and had
8 the same uniforms as us, that they wore police uniforms
9 as well. But the man who met us had a slightly
10 different uniform than the one that we wore in
12 Q. So judging by their uniforms, they were
13 policemen, were they not?
14 A. Yes, because later on, all policemen were
15 required to wear uniforms of that kind, in the months
16 to come.
17 Q. So he was a forerunner to this new uniform;
18 is that correct?
19 A. It would appear that way, yes.
20 Q. Were these people from the police station at
21 Omarska, the public security station there -- in view
22 of the fact that some 150 people worked there and you
23 probably knew all of them -- were they people you knew?
24 A. No. I did not know a single man who was
25 standing there.
1 Q. Did they introduce themselves, show any ID
2 cards, or anything of that kind?
3 A. The man wearing the uniform that I spoke
4 about a moment ago, who met us, said that they were
5 policemen from Banja Luka and that they would be
6 leaving on holiday, to have a brief holiday, and that
7 we would be taking up their duties.
8 Q. What duties were those?
9 A. It was the duty of providing security for the
10 facility, physical security, as we refer to it in the
12 Q. Now, this group of policemen, the ones that
13 you came across when you got there, did they take up
14 the people from the Omarska police station and position
15 them anywhere?
16 A. Yes. That man, and the other man standing
17 there with him who greeted us and met us, they
18 positioned people around the facility.
19 Q. Were there any buses there then?
20 A. No.
21 Q. So they had left during that interval.
22 A. Yes, quite probably they had left.
23 Q. Was Mr. Jankovic and Mr. Cadjo there?
24 A. No.
25 Q. They had left too?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Did you now see any people? And we're
3 talking about 6.00 or 7.00 in the morning. Did you see
4 any people?
5 A. Yes. You could make out people from the
6 positions that we were standing, externally to the
8 Q. Where were the people?
9 A. You could see people that morning only
10 through a small door here [indicates], which exists
11 here on the ground floor of the administrative
13 Q. You mean the garage?
14 A. No, not the garage; another door in the
15 centre of the building.
16 Q. Did you see people in other parts, in the
17 other buildings?
18 A. No. You couldn't see any people in any of
19 the other buildings.
20 Q. When Mr. Meakic learnt about the new task and
21 situation, did he give the impression that he was
22 surprised or that he expected something like that to
24 A. Meakic was surprised, in my view, and he sort
25 of spoke out loud and thought out loud, said he didn't
1 know what was going on. He was confused. He just knew
2 that there was this assignment that we were taking over
3 from the Banja Luka police, to put it in those terms,
4 and he stood around there for some time with us.
5 Q. Did he say that he would try, in view of the
6 potential that the police station had and the Omarska
7 department, that he would try and avoid the assignment?
8 A. Well, he did speak about that, yes. He said
9 that the best thing would be for us not to undertake
10 the assignment because we didn't have the resources
12 Q. In the course of that day, did he go to seek
13 out some additional information and try and solve the
14 problem in any way and his activities as commander?
15 A. Yes. He went on straight away after some
16 40 minutes or one hour. He went off straight away.
17 Q. Do you know where he went?
18 A. I don't know exactly. I don't know who he
19 went to report to.
20 Q. When he returned, did he give you a report of
21 any kind? Did he give you any information? Did he
22 issue any orders? Did he tell you anything?
23 A. No, nothing special. He didn't inform us of
24 anything special, but he just reiterated the assignment
25 that we had already been given by the Banja Luka men,
1 and he said that we had received orders to provide for
2 the physical security of the facilities in which the
3 detainees were located. He said that he was told that
4 this would go on for some 15 days, and that he would
5 see what he could do to make this period shorter.
6 Q. Did he mention who the detainees were?
7 A. He didn't explain any of this to us at that
9 Q. The people were detained. Did he mention how
10 the food supply would be organised? There are a lot a
11 problems to be solved in a large compound of this
13 A. No. He made no mention of that. He didn't
14 speak to us policemen about that.
15 Q. Now, the first shift of people who had
16 arrived in the locality of the Omarska compound, how
17 many arrived? How many policemen arrived?
18 A. About 20.
19 Q. Let us repeat once again. Was there any type
20 of hierarchy? Was there a commander, leader, or the
21 policemen and reserve policemen which were equal in
23 A. Well, it was the same, just as it was in the
24 police precinct of Omarska.
25 Q. In this interval with the takeover of power,
1 were there any changes made?
2 A. No.
3 Q. What did you do, in concrete terms, in the
4 first days of your assignment? What did Mr. Meakic --
5 what tasks did he assign to you?
6 A. Well, on that first day he told me personally
7 that I would be the duty officer, and the other
8 policemen had already taken up their positions. They
9 had already been on duty since the morning, where they
10 had been positioned by the Banja Luka policemen or
11 their commander, most probably, and that was how the
12 day was to evolve until a new schedule had been drawn
14 Q. Were you given any additional assignments to
15 assist, in any way, the reserve policemen who were
16 there then, who were in the majority at the time?
17 A. Well, in concrete terms, he told me. I think
18 I was the only one. Perhaps Branislav Bojic was
19 another one. I think he was there too. So he said I
20 would be the duty officer for that day, and I should be
21 around if needed and if the reserve policemen had any
22 questions to ask from the daily routine of policing, if
23 they had any problems or anything like that.
24 Q. Did Borislav Bojic get any instructions of
25 that kind? He was also an active and experienced
1 policeman and was a candidate, together with
2 Mr. Meakic?
3 A. Well, his instructions referred to all active
4 policemen, in principle for other tasks and assignments
5 as well, but in this particular case he addressed us.
6 Q. So is it standard that an active policeman,
7 in effecting his duties, should be at the service, so
8 to speak, of reserve policemen, to help them in any
10 A. Yes, at all times and in all kinds of police
11 work. An active policeman is always there to train and
12 educate the reserve policemen.
13 Q. Mr. Kvocka, would you try and remember some
14 of the names of the policemen who arrived at the
15 Omarska compound on that first day? You mentioned
16 Branislav Bojic. Can you remember any other names?
17 A. You mean the active policemen?
18 Q. Well, both, active and reserve.
19 A. It's difficult for me to recall their names
20 at this point. I know most of the reserve policemen
21 who worked at some given point, but on that particular
22 morning, who was there, which of the reserve policemen
23 was there, I just can't remember.
24 Q. Well, we'll go back to the question of those
25 policemen later on. But tell us, in concrete terms,
1 what your duties were that day. What did you do?
2 A. I spent the day in front of the entrance
3 mostly, in front of the entrance to the administrative
4 building mostly, on the pista, but nearer, closer to
5 the administrative building.
6 Q. Did you have any contacts with the guards
7 that day?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Were there any questions of the following
10 type: "What are we doing here? How long are we going
11 to be here?"
12 A. Yes. All of them would ask me questions of
13 that kind or make comments. They were thinking out
14 loud about this situation in general.
15 Q. Mr. Kvocka, before you arrived in Omarska,
16 did you have any information whatsoever that in a time
17 in the future you would have any tasks or assignments
18 of this kind?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Did you hear that an investigating centre was
21 being established or was this your first encounter with
22 the centre?
23 A. Well, no, there was no talk about any of this
24 before that. The first information I received was when
25 I got there that morning.
1 Q. Mr. Kvocka, when the buses were there and
2 then when the buses had left, did you notice anything
3 out of the ordinary opposite the restaurant? Were
4 there any bodies there, corpses, the bodies of dead
5 people, anything of that kind?
6 A. Well, after 8.00 or 9.00 a.m., it was
7 daylight, and while I was in front of the
8 administrative building, as I've already said, in the
9 pista region, on the same height, on that yellow
10 surface --
11 Q. Could you get up, please, and show us,
12 because this is an important point.
13 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Perhaps you
14 could give Mr. Kvocka the pointer and help him, and
15 give him the headphones with the long cord.
16 A. While I was in this area here [indicates], as
17 I said, when it was daylight, at 8.00 or 9.00 a.m., in
18 this area, on the green surface, there were three or
19 four dead bodies laying there. These bodies were lying
20 on the grass, but you could see that they were dead.
21 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Were they males? Could you tell?
23 A. Yes, they were. They were men.
24 Q. Did you hear later on how it came about that
25 there were three or four bodies there? Because you
1 will agree with me this isn't a customary thing to
3 A. Later on, when the guards could talk to each
4 other a little bit, then it was said that the previous
5 guards had told them, when they were taking over their
6 shifts, that they were bodies of people who had tried
7 to escape during the night. Yes. They were people who
8 had tried to escape during the night, and that they
9 intervened by shooting them.
10 Q. Does that mean that those people had been
11 killed when they were being brought into custody in the
12 Omarska compound?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Did this occur before the members of the
15 Omarska police precinct had taken up their duties?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Did you hear where this happened? Was this
18 something that was talked about in the compound?
19 A. As I have already said, the guards who
20 replaced the previous guards on duty said that when
21 they left the buses, that they tried to escape, and
22 that that is the spot where they were shot and that
23 that is the spot where they now lay.
24 Q. Were there any other traces in the area that
25 that could have happened in some other place? Were
1 there any traces of blood or any other objects which
2 would lead you to conclude that the killing had not
3 taken place on that spot but elsewhere?
4 A. No. There was nothing to indicate that the
5 killings had taken place in another area.
6 Q. Were there any traces of the asphalt having
7 been cleaned, washed?
8 A. No. Everything was quite in order.
9 Q. Mr. Kvocka, did Mr. Meakic see that or was he
10 informed about what had happened?
11 A. He saw it at the same time as I did, perhaps
12 five or six minutes or ten minutes before me, but we
13 saw it almost at the same time.
14 Q. Did Mr. Meakic order any investigations into
15 the event?
16 A. Well, he didn't tell us anything along those
18 Q. And the police precinct, in general terms,
19 would it be obliged to start up investigations into
20 criminal acts in general, or would somebody else do
22 A. No. In our description of our jobs, we would
23 have to ensure and set up a -- protect those bodies,
24 that they should not be touched, and then the criminal
25 crime department should be informed and further steps
2 Q. Do you know if Mr. Meakic did that?
3 A. I don't know.
4 Q. Thank you. We're a little tired already.
5 How long did those bodies lie there?
6 A. They had been lying there for at least two --
7 they lay there for at least two days.
8 Q. And nobody undertook any steps?
9 A. No, they didn't.
10 Q. When were the bodies taken off?
11 A. After those two days, the bodies were, quite
12 simply, taken away.
13 Q. Did you see them being taken away,
14 transported, or did you just see that they were no
15 longer there?
16 A. Well, one day a small truck arrived, a van,
17 and two men, together with the driver, and they loaded
18 up the bodies and they were taken away.
19 Q. Those two men that you mentioned that came
20 with the small truck, did they belong to the Omarska
21 police station department?
22 A. No.
23 Q. You didn't know them?
24 A. No. No. They were not in uniform at all.
25 Q. Did they appear later on in Omarska? Did you
1 ever see them again?
2 A. I did not.
3 MR. SIMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it
4 is half past 2.00. Perhaps it is time for us to
5 interrupt, unless you planned for us to make up for the
6 time we lost at the beginning. It is up to you, Your
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] No. Please
9 be seated, Mr. Kvocka.
10 I cannot ask everyone to stay an hour longer,
11 because we have other engagements. So we will adjourn
12 now and we will resume tomorrow. At 9.30 tomorrow we
13 meet again.
14 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
15 at 2.33 p.m., to be reconvened on
16 Thursday, the 2nd day of March, 2000,
17 at 9.30 a.m.