1 Monday, 26th March 2001
2 [Zigic Defence Opening Statement]
3 [Open session]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.25 a.m.
5 [The accused entered court]
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Please be seated. Good morning
7 to you. Good morning, ladies and gentlemen; good morning to the technical
8 booth and the interpreters; good morning to the staff of the Registry, the
9 members of the Prosecution and the Defence counsel; good morning to the
11 This morning we start off with the Defence case of the accused
12 Mr. Zigic. I am now going to give the floor, without further ado, to
13 Mr. Stojanovic for an opening statement, I think, according to Rule 84.
14 Is that right, Mr. Stojanovic?
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] That's right, Your Honour, and
16 thank you for giving me the floor.
17 If I may reserve the right to address other issues with respect to
18 the decisions that we have received in the meantime, but as you have so
19 rightly stated, Your Honour, first things first, and it is my opening
20 statement that is first now.
21 Your Honours, it is no easy task to make the right selection of
22 what the Defence of Mr. Zoran Zigic should say precisely at this
23 particular moment. One must be all-embracing, but procedure is something
24 that in itself implies dynamics so that everything has a proper time, and
25 we are going to bear that in mind now.
1 Basically, in summary fashion, we wish to indicate some of our
2 viewpoints with respect to what is contained in the indictment, to what
3 has been done so far, as well as to the intentions and goals which we wish
4 to achieve through, to use the terminology of common law procedure, our
5 own case.
6 A portion of our principal views the Defence of Zoran Zigic has
7 already demonstrated in its motion for judgement of acquittal, which will
8 mutatis mutandis further be very topical in our line of defence.
9 There are two bases upon which our Defence case rests. First, an
10 active quest for the truth in the events that took place; and second, a
11 careful legal analysis of ascertained facts and the logical links between
13 Let us say quite frankly at the outset the truth will sometimes be
14 painful for our client, but we are deeply convinced only in a
15 disproportionately small fraction of what he is charged with in the
16 indictment. However, the truth is something that Mr. Zigic personally
17 does not wish to get away from and that is where lies his motive, that
18 after an insight into the two indictments by which he is charged, he
19 himself requested to be transferred to The Hague and to be tried before
20 this Tribunal.
21 According to psychological expertise conducted on the part of two
22 experts which were appointed by the Registry, Mr. Zigic is an
23 exceptionally intelligent individual. Therefore, he must certainly have
24 known that what he has been charged with in two indictments is sufficient
25 to bring the most severe punishment to him. Why, then, did he request to
1 be transferred to The Hague and to be tried according to those
2 indictments? The answer is a simple one. He knew that he did very few of
3 all those things that he's been charged with, and believing that in view
4 of the scope and seriousness of the procedure which is conducted before
5 this Tribunal, the truth will out.
6 We cannot say in this respect that he had any illusions as to his
7 responsibility, which sometimes appears here with individuals who are not
8 the direct perpetrators of acts and who are individuals of a higher rank.
9 Quite simply, he knows very well himself whether he beat somebody up,
10 tortured anybody, or killed anybody, and it is in keeping with those
11 experiences of his that he has asked precisely to be transferred to The
12 Hague. Within the scope of all this, he had the honour of having the
13 distinguished President of this Trial Chamber realise this transfer by a
14 decision of his.
15 A legal analysis and the application of logical principles
16 represent the terrain where the Defence will wage a great battle with the
17 charges of the indictment. It is easy to find answers in the conflict
18 between right and wrong, justice and injustice, although there too
19 quantitative assessments are frequently the subject of great divergence of
20 opinion, but it is far more difficult to resolve the conflict of more
21 acceptable legal principles.
22 In the decisions of this Trial Chamber, logics, which can be both
23 legal and the logic which refers to facts alone, without doubt achieves a
24 very high level. The majority would say that it is easy to resolve the
25 conflict between logical and illogical; however, it is precisely there
1 that the greatest dangers lie, luckily, as a rule, more rarely. In a way,
2 non-logic has in its background a logics of its own.
3 In our opinion, this testifies -- this is borne out by the fact
4 that we have conceived the concept and standard of beyond reasonable
5 doubt, and this can be a very relative notion and concept and, in fact,
6 need not guarantee the truth but need only represent the rules of the
7 game, especially so as that standard here is very frequently unjustifiably
8 accepted and is in great correlation with the rule of the balance of
9 probabilities, and all this in the absence of firm traces of the acts
11 We consider that that is most often not sufficient to bring in a
12 decision on somebody's fate and destiny on the basis of that. However,
13 the basic problem is the conflict between the logical and illogical. Much
14 can be explained in many different, acceptable ways. I think that this is
15 something that the distinguished Supreme Court US Judge Holmes noted a
16 long time ago. Yes, we do accept, but we must go further than that, and
17 in that case we must firmly pose the criteria which will give us our
18 priorities. At all events, logics must be linked up, both to the natural
19 sciences and to the social sciences, and be based on the anthropological
20 factor, which gives measure to all things. In itself, however, logics, of
21 course, is not enough. Justice can sometimes be illogical, from the
22 aspects of basic logical principles.
23 It is the position of the Defence that the indictment, to a great
24 extent, is founded on a simplified logic, and logics which leads, in the
25 best of cases, to the possible and probable. However, for conviction, it
1 is, of course, necessary to have something more certain and better thought
3 Here and now we are going to indicate, by way of an example, the
4 placement of the so-called common-purpose theory. The Defence at this
5 point has a common goal, of course, with the Prosecution, and that common
6 goal is truth and justice, which is the object to which the Trial Chamber
7 certainly aspires. But truly it has nothing in common with the theory of
8 the Prosecution, with the Prosecution's theory on a common purpose. Essen
9 lynching is far from what the Prosecution is today placing under the
10 theory which was applied in that case. Unfortunately, this theory is put
11 forward in a far more negative sense, that is to say, as something more
12 regressive, an important step back, even if compared to 1945.
13 At that time, the common purpose was viewed in relation to a very
14 concrete event. An immediate and very concrete purpose was sought and not
15 some imaginary one or ideological one. Therefore - and perhaps I'm going
16 to be a little bold in this comparison - the Nazis were in a better
17 position than our client finds himself with respect to this position on
18 the part of the Prosecution and the theory -- the common-purpose theory.
19 Not all Nazis, although there is enough scope for that in the Nuremberg
20 Statute - and especially not the majority of Germans - came under the
21 impact and acts of this theory, although they did have a common purpose,
22 and that common purpose was to conquer the world and to enslave and
23 exterminate many nations. That, as an easier form, implies persecution.
24 At all events, this concept of the theory of a common purpose and
25 criminal liability and possibility has no fulcrum in the Tribunal Statute
1 or common purposes in every -- there are many common purposes in each and
2 every human endeavour, and so in addition to truth and justice, we can,
3 for example, with certainty say -- with a degree of certainty say that a
4 common purpose is the representative of both the Prosecution and the
5 Defence, even, to take it to the furthest point in a legal way, to take
6 money away from the United Nations, to stretch a point. And this would
7 not be untrue. On the contrary, for many people, this is their primary
8 goal, which ensures their family's existence.
9 If, for example, the Defence, along this road towards a common
10 purpose with the Prosecution, towards truth and justice, performs in
11 excess of some kind, then this would mean that the Prosecution would be
12 responsible for that as well. However, this is just an illustration of
13 how we can, in a multitude of ways, nice and not so nice, truthfully show
14 up a large number of common purposes. Common purposes of this kind have a
15 multitude of meanings, and they are relative in the sense of general and
16 particular, for which a theory of -- a common-purpose theory understood in
17 this way has never -- nowhere been accepted in contemporary criminal law.
18 Apart from that, the participation of a number of individuals in a joint
19 transaction is usually everywhere solved by the application of different
20 theories on collaboration.
21 The theory of a common purpose, especially in the sense it is put
22 forward by the other side, quite evidently represents only a massed road
23 to collective responsibility in the sense of responsibility without
24 actually being guilty, and this collective responsibility which in this
25 way can be ascribed to a whole nation.
1 A step further from the individualisation of guilt towards
2 collective responsibility is a step back towards the Middle Ages. On the
3 other hand, it is obvious that it can only have a negative effect on the
4 aims of punishment and judgement. This theory, which frequently does not
5 differentiate between the guilty and the non-guilty, leads to tragedies in
6 criminal law. At all events, it lends a de-stimulative effect on those
7 who refrain from concrete crimes which occur in their environment and
8 those for which there is no adequate mens rea.
9 Generally speaking and independently of the common-purpose theory,
10 the Defence considers that today we cannot rely on the practice of
11 military courts immediately after the end of the Second World War. We are
12 not now living in 1945 or in 1946, and the events are not comparable
13 either. We are prone to sometimes completely agree with the picturesque
14 comparisons one of our colleagues made when he said that the contribution
15 of military courts to the development of law is equal to the contribution
16 of military music to the development of music in general. This Tribunal
17 and these times are at a higher level of society's development and the
18 development of law.
19 Your Honours, the Defence must state that the indictment is not
20 completely clear, especially with respect to what is contained in the
21 confidential and the now-public schedules and attachments to the
22 indictment, as well as the inter-relationship between those documents. On
23 the other hand, apart from one exception and one case, there is a great
24 time span during which the crimes have been allegedly performed, and the
25 Defence, by means of this indictment, has been -- has not been able to
1 practice the defence by alibi.
2 There are no material traces. The documents, documents which
3 sometimes speak importantly about the acts that Zigic is being charged
4 with, similarly do not exist. All that remains for the Defence to do is
5 to put up a defence on the basis of so-called hostile witnesses who, in
6 fact, belong to the indictment or by the testimony of Serbian guards who
7 are themselves the accused or could be accused, but none of these persons
8 does not, in fact, wish to testify, particularly not to say something good
9 about Zigic or to give testimony which would lead to their own
10 culpability, incriminate themselves.
11 All this testifies to the fact that the Defence is in a very
12 adverse position and does not have fair conditions, enjoys fair conditions
13 in a situation which is objectively that way, where we are faced with
14 nobody's guilt. But this gives the Defence the right to request that the
15 Prosecution be placed under the same conditions with somewhat different,
16 otherwise generally accepted, mechanisms.
17 One of those mechanisms is certainly the general assumption in
18 practice throughout the world that somebody cannot be found guilty for the
19 most grievous crimes on the basis of a mere tale told by one or two
20 hostile -- hostilely-disposed witnesses.
21 Now, how does the Defence assess the state of the Prosecution with
22 respect to the Zigic case at this point in time?
23 The Prosecution case has been completed, as well as the cases of
24 the first, second, and third accused. Many hundreds of documents have
25 been admitted into evidence as exhibits and none of them speak of the
1 guilt of the accused Zigic. Several hundred -- several tens of affidavits
2 or written statements have been accepted, of which none speak of any guilt
3 on the part of the accused Zigic. We have heard, I think, 96 witnesses,
4 of whom at least two or three, and then in a contradictory and
5 unacceptable manner, speak about -- testify to some of the counts in the
6 indictment against Zigic.
7 The Defence considers that at this point in time, not a single
8 count of the indictment against Zoran Zigic has been proved by the
9 standard applied of beyond reasonable doubt.
10 How, then, will the Defence of Zigic respond to this? The largest
11 portions in the indictment, the Defence will raise a defence. Serious
12 indictments for serious crimes require a serious defence and serious
13 caution. The Defence cannot rely on the assumption that the Trial Chamber
14 will share its opinion that the standard of beyond reasonable doubt has
15 not been reached, and therefore, with respect to the bulk of the
16 indictment, it will be presenting evidence which dispels doubts and
17 dilemmas as to the existence of acts for which the accused Zigic is being
19 With respect to a smaller portion of the indictment, the Defence
20 will not be putting up a defence, but for that there are two completely
21 opposing reasons. A small section of the indictment the Defence will not
22 be putting up a defence against, although it considers that there is not
23 sufficient proof as to guilt, but it will do so precisely because it
24 considers that those charges and assertions in the indictment are true,
25 and this will be confirmed by Defence witnesses themselves.
1 A second smaller portion of the indictment will similarly not be
2 defended by the Defence because in those sections there is not a trace of
3 truth, and at the same time, not a trace of it in the evidence that has
4 been presented so far.
5 As the case stands at the end of the Prosecution case, and after
6 the presentation of the Defence cases of the three co-accused and how
7 things stand now, we shall illustrate by using one example.
8 We have heard here hundreds of times people mention the three
9 fingers as some form of Serbian greeting. Do we know what those three
10 fingers mean? What does the Honourable Trial Chamber have on that subject
11 in their documents? What does the Honourable Trial Chamber know about
12 that in the almost 10.000 pages of the transcript and many more pages of
13 the different documents? All it has is one single explanation, and that
14 is that given by the testimony of Witness Okis Jasmir given on the 5th of
15 June, 2000 - the page of the transcript is 2549 - that that means one
16 president, one state, and one people. As one would say in German,
17 "ein fuhrer, ein reich, ein volk." Of course, only in Hitler's Germany,
18 where that gesture precisely -- that slogan represented the slogan of
19 Naziism. However, the three fingers, the three fingers salute, represent
20 the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, and because of that the people of
21 the Orthodox faith cross themselves with their three fingers.
22 Your Honours, I am not a very religious man, especially not in the
23 classical sense. I say to myself what the great church reformer Martin
24 Luther said, that a good lawyer is a poor Christian probably because many
25 lawyers and men of the law even seek proof for the existence of God. They
1 want to see proof, evidence, documents, stamps, and seals. However, I
2 really found it painful when I heard that a Christian greeting was being
3 turned into something quite different, a Nazi greeting, and that
4 Christianity was being turned into Naziism. At the same time, as a legal
5 man, I found it painful to hear that a basis of this kind should -- a fact
6 of this kind should be presented to the Trial Chamber in this way for them
7 to be able to reach their judgement on that basis.
8 Your Honours, in your documents you have had nothing else, no
9 other explanation for that to the present day, and who knows what else has
10 not been served up to this Trial Chamber by Prosecution witnesses. The
11 Defence will go into greater detail about this in its closing arguments
12 and documents. It has just presented here one example, indicating that,
13 with respect to the Prosecution case, there are exceptional and
14 extraordinary reasons for disbelief and for a maximum degree of caution to
15 be exerted.
16 Without any great desire, and with even less passion, we shall
17 show some of the aspects which will go into some of the aspects of the
18 political and historical context which was the backdrop to this event.
19 There is a multitude of reasons for this premise and point of departure.
20 The reasons for some of this lies in the fact that the previous Defence
21 cases supplied important explanations. A lot has also been ascertained
22 through indisputed fact. However, the basic reason for this starting
23 point is our conviction that the time has come for us to stop trying the
24 politics of the vanquished with the aim of proving that their political
25 options were wrong. This kind of approach to trying criminals of war is
1 very often a requiem of past times. A good or bad political option must
2 never be, and cannot be, justified for torture -- a justification for
3 torture and killing, and it is time for us to begin trying war crimes and
4 to begin trying both political and military victors as well. Nonetheless,
5 in this particular case there is an act which, to a significant measure,
6 is permeated with that which is political, and with historical elements as
7 well, and that is the act from Article 5(H) of our Statute, persecutions
8 on a political, racial, or religious basis.
9 Finally, a very important reason that I do not like to speak about
10 this topic is that it is a highly sensitive one. This Tribunal knows and
11 recognises the measures which can protect those speaking before it from
12 others. However, there are no measures by which to protect others from
13 those who have been given the floor here. By saying that, what I wish to
14 say is that my brief statement on the political and historical context
15 must not be taken to mean a challenge to national chauvinistic passions.
16 It is my true desire that all three nations in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and
17 each and every citizen of Bosnia-Herzegovina, should live in peace and
18 happiness. That is why my presentations showing the dark side of those
19 relationships represent pure factography, with the aim of giving the Trial
20 Chamber as many facts as possible for it to be able to use those facts for
21 a legal assessment and to be able to do so in a comprehensive manner, with
22 all the facts at hand. The Prosecution has given a partial view of that,
23 in keeping with its own positions in the trial. I think that that is what
24 the Defence should do too.
25 After many decades of peaceful rule on the part of the so-called
1 socialist regime, and the downfall of that option in the Eastern Bloc, we
2 have seen the organisation and victory of nationalistically oriented
3 political parties. It is necessary for me to mention at this point that
4 in the former SFRY, there were approximately 45 per cent Serbs, and in the
5 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, prior to the outbreak of the war in 1992,
6 the Serb population made up about one-third. However, the Serbs there had
7 a small part, negligible part. For more than 45 years of the existence of
8 the former SFRY, with the exception of a one-year period, no Serb, not a
9 single Serb, was the president of the country, the country's prime
10 minister, or the number-one man of the Communist Party.
11 A similar picture can be drawn, although not from the very
12 beginning of the existence of the SFRY but from the death of Djuro Pucar,
13 that is to say, 30 years prior to the war it existed in Bosnia-Herzegovina
14 too, this same picture.
15 Bosnia-Herzegovina and also the then Yugoslavia was ruled by
16 numerous Muslims, even more numerous Croats and Slovenes. Josip Broz was,
17 of course, a Croat. Edvard Kardelj was a Slovene. Of the Muslims, let me
18 mention the Dizdarevic brothers, the Pozderac brothers, the Bujedic
19 family. And of the Bosnian Croats, let us mention the Mikulic. All of
20 these were presidents and prime ministers, both with federal and
21 republican power and authority. Of the more important Serbs, we can only
22 mention one, Aleksandar Rankovic, and him up to the 1960s, but he was
23 neither president of the state, nor was he prime minister. But in spite
24 of all this, the Serbs liked the country they had, and they considered
25 themselves to be Yugoslavs. Serb statehood did not exist at all, nor did
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 any of the Serbs need it.
2 I have to say that it is my personal opinion that the Muslims,
3 too, to the same extent, had this kind of relationship towards that state,
4 the state of Yugoslavia.
5 Unfortunately, as has been said, it was then that the extreme
6 nationalistically-oriented parties took centre stage. It is a notorious
7 fact that one nationalism breeds another, that nationalism breeds
8 nationalism, and that is quite logical.
9 In this regard, the Prosecution has consistently been avoiding
10 presenting this Trial Chamber with the order in which these nationalistic
11 parties were established, the parties which quite obviously had almost
12 complete control over their peoples. That is one of the most important
13 facts in all respects.
14 Therefore, Your Honours, let us state this loud and clear here and
15 now: As far as Bosnia and Herzegovina is concerned, one of the
16 nationalistic parties to be formed was the nationalistic party of the
17 Croats, the HDZ. This was followed by the nationalistic party of the
18 Muslims, the SDA; and finally and lastly, as the last one to be formed,
19 was the nationalistic party of the Serbs, the SDS. I would say in
20 response to the nationalist tensions that had been integrated by the
21 establishment of the two previous nationalist parties.
22 The Prosecution has provided us with abundant information about
23 wartime propaganda. Of course, only about the Serb propaganda, but not
24 about the period prior to the war which broke out in Bosnia-Herzegovina in
25 1992, nor about the propaganda that led up to that war. It was a period
1 of heightening national tensions, boosting national tensions, which would
2 quickly lead to their explosion. The time I'm referring to is the year
4 With your permission, Your Honours, and with the assistance of the
5 usher, I should like to show you an example of such propaganda. On the
6 ELMO, please.
7 We see here the cover page of a pro-Muslim, high-circulation
8 magazine called Novi Vox, published in the capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina,
9 Sarajevo, dated 1991. I think the date in the upper right-hand corner can
10 be discerned. It says "Listopad," or "October."
11 This purports to be a joke. The newspaper, which had its
12 headquarters in Dobrovoljacka street, where, as the introduction to the
13 war, units of the Yugoslav People's Army were massacred, even though those
14 units were in agreement with Mr. Alija Izetbegovic withdrawing from the
15 barracks. They were massacred by Muslim paramilitary formations.
16 On this cover page we see a drawing of a Muslim soldier with a fez
17 on his head, trampling severed heads of Serb leaders Karadzic, Koljevic,
18 and others.
19 So let me repeat. This was October 1991. This magazine was
20 published on a regular basis, with the full permission of the authorities
21 Sarajevo. To the left of the soldier we see the words "The Handzar
22 Division stands ready," ready with an arm raised as in the Heil Hitler
23 greeting. And this was the greeting used by the Ustashas, the shock units
24 of the Nazi entity which was called the Independent State of Croatia
25 during the Second World War.
1 The Handzar is a kind of Oriental long dagger which this division
2 used abundantly, and the Handzar was an infamous Ustasha Division composed
3 exclusively of Muslims. It should not be forgotten that the notorious
4 Ustasha camp called Jasenovac, in which at least 500.000 Serbs were killed
5 during the Second World War, in most cases by slaughtering, that this camp
6 was only 30 kilometres from Prijedor. Such a background necessarily
7 provoked great fear and the instinct for self-preservation among the Serbs
8 of Prijedor.
9 To the right of the Muslim soldier are the words, "The Fourth
10 Reich is coming, Willkomen," or "Welcome." "I am an Ustasha. I am an
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Ms. Susan Somers.
13 MS. SOMERS: I apologise for interrupting my colleague and the
14 Court, but I was concerned about one comment that cannot be reflected or
15 corrected on the record absent my saying something, and I'm looking to see
16 a description of the activity performed by this person on the cover of
17 this magazine, and my colleague indicated, on line 22, page 15, "We see to
18 the left of the soldier of the Handzar Division ready, an arm raised." I
19 think the reference was to a possible Nazi-type stance. I do not see such
20 an arm raised, and I'm wondering if perhaps either I'm missing something
21 or it could be pointed out, or if it's just perhaps a mistake by counsel,
22 he could correct the record.
23 Thank you. Again, I apologise, but I found it quite an obvious
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you, Ms. Somers.
1 Mr. Stojanovic, it's true that we do not see that on the picture.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I wasn't following
3 the transcript, I was looking at the picture, and I didn't notice how it
4 was translated. I didn't say that the hand was raised, but I was saying
5 that the Ustasha greeting was identical to the Nazi greeting, but instead
6 of the words "Heil Hitler," they used the word "ready" or "for the home
7 ready," with a hand raised. In this case the hand is not raised, but the
8 greeting "ready" is a Nazi Ustasha greeting which is regularly accompanied
9 by the raising of the hand, but I didn't say that the hand was raised on
10 this picture.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers.
12 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Judge. In which case I assume
13 Mr. Stojanovic is correcting his comment on line 22 where he said "to the
14 left of the soldier, an arm raised." That is incorrect then?
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, yes, I do correct
16 the transcript because that is not what I meant. Of course the hand isn't
17 raised, it is lowered, but my explanation was that the words "ready" is
18 accompanied by the raising of the hand, similarly as in Nazi Germany.
19 Sometimes they don't have to raise the hand. Sometimes they say, "Heil
20 Hitler," without raising the hand. So I accept that the transcript needs
21 to be corrected.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Stojanovic, perhaps you
23 could go further and more quickly over this area and go on to your defence
24 of your client Mr. Zigic. Please continue.
25 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Only a few
1 more words about this picture.
2 "'I'm an Ustasha. I'm an Ustasha,' Slavko Ecimovic cried out.
3 The leader of the assault on Prijedor that took place on the 30th of May,
4 1992." Even in Omarska, as we were told by a Prosecution witness, Azedin
5 Oklopcic, during the proceedings on the 15th of May 2000.
6 Could this picture now be removed from the ELMO, please.
7 I apologise, Your Honour, we're just checking the transcript.
8 JUDGE RIAD: Excuse me. Just for my knowledge, did -- was
9 "Ustasha" exactly corresponding to Croat or to Muslim or to both?
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, members of the
11 Ustasha movement were predominantly Croats, but a segment of the Muslims
12 joined the movement. Others segments of the Muslim population joined the
13 partisan movement and the communists. So Muslims could be found on all
14 sides. But this segment that joined the Ustasha movement through this
15 Handzar Division had the worst possible reputation, and this was a smaller
16 section of the Muslim people.
17 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Political decisions reflected in
19 style this propaganda. Bosnia and Herzegovina is composed of three
20 constituent nations, the Muslims or Bosniaks, the Serbs, and Croats, as is
21 stated in the Constitution of that republic. Consensus of all three
22 constituent nations needs to be achieved for all the most important
23 decisions. However, the Muslim-Croat coalition led by nationalistic
24 parties interpreted the Constitution as a card game preference where --
25 which is always played in threes, with the aim of two defeating the
2 In accordance with such an interpretation of the Constitution,
3 they would say to the third ethnicity, "By our order and contrary to your
4 will, you will no longer be what you are and what you want to be, that is,
5 Yugoslavs, even if you were born as such." Furthermore, they would say,
6 "You, the Serbs, contrary to your will, will have to accept as your
7 president a person who in his work called the Islamic declaration issued
8 as long ago as 1975, declared, and I quote, 'There can be no peace or
9 coexistence between Islam and non-Islamic societies and political
10 institutions,'" due to which, as a Muslim fundamentalist, he spent ten
11 years in gaol. Of course, I'm referring to Mr. Alija Izetbegovic.
12 Your Honours, try to put yourself in the position of those
13 unfortunate people and think what option you could possibly choose, at
14 least the vast majority of that people, within such a political and
15 historical context.
16 In a certain sense, even the Dayton Agreement acknowledged the
17 legitimacy of these decisions of the Serb people. The war that preceded
18 Dayton was led by two camps: a camp which during the war was absolutely
19 against the solutions provided for by the Dayton Agreement - that is, they
20 favoured a unity with Bosnia-Herzegovina - and those who accepted the
21 Dayton Agreements as the fulfilment of their minimum requirements, that
22 is, the Serbs. That means that the rights and objectives were denied to
23 the Serbs which were acknowledged by the Dayton agreements.
24 Your Honours, allow me to repeat, with your permission, that the
25 purpose of this part of my statement should not, under any circumstances,
1 encourage inter-ethnic passions, but that I refer to these political and
2 historical facts merely because of their impact on the possible existence
3 of the act -- of the crime of persecution. That is why it is important to
4 say a few more words about the persecutions within the territory of
5 Bosnia-Herzegovina, about which the Prosecution has provided you a
6 one-sided and simplified picture.
7 Extensive information about this can be provided in an article by
8 a qualified expert and member of the administration of the former US
9 president George Bush Sr., Mr. George Kenney, in his article entitled
10 "Take off the Blinders on Bosnia," published in the Los Angeles Times of
11 the 5th of June, 1997. From this article, it can be seen that, judging by
12 the number of refugees, that the most persecuted people in Bosnia were the
13 Serb people. We should like to tender this article as our exhibit, and I
14 think the number would be D6/4. I have a sufficient number of copies for
15 the Trial Chamber.
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina is a state consisting of Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina. The capital of that state is Sarajevo, and Sarajevo is at
18 the same time the capital of the part of the country called Bosnia.
19 Before the war, there were more than 150.000 Serbs in that town. Now they
20 are not there any more; only a couple of thousand remain since the war.
21 The capital of Herzegovina is Mostar, in which one-third consisted
22 of each of the three ethnic groups. It was the centre of Serb culture and
23 commerce. Before the war, there were almost 35.000 Serbs there; after the
24 war, only 400.
25 Well, where are the Serbs of Bosnia and Herzegovina? The capital
1 of Herzegovina was more thoroughly cleansed than all others, and prior to
2 all others. However, that is not something that the Trial Chamber will
3 learn from the Prosecution, just as it will not learn about the camps for
4 Serbs in that part of Bosnia-Herzegovina, such as Dretelj, which was
5 founded on the 4th of April, 1992, the survivors of which could be counted
6 on the fingers of our hands.
7 We can learn a little from the case of the Celebici camp on the
8 territory of Konjic municipality, where, out of 7.700 Serbs prior to the
9 war, one year into the war only 280 remained. An interesting piece of
10 information is also the fact that the Celebici camp was established a
11 little earlier than all the other camps on the territory of Prijedor
12 municipality and that it existed until the very end of 1992. Migrations
13 of this kind necessarily had to result in the resettlement of Serbs in
14 other areas and the arrival of members of other ethnic groups to take
15 their place, who in their turn had to leave their homes in other parts of
16 the same state. The persecutions of some in these cases necessarily bring
17 pressure to bear on members of the persecuting people to areas where the
18 persecuted are more powerful. In most cases, this is not revenge but
19 simply the quest for shelter, for mere survival, and for protection for
20 one's family and a roof over one's head.
21 The town closest to Prijedor is Sanski Most, which is only some 30
22 kilometres away. Before the war, the Serbs constituted the majority.
23 After the war, only a couple of per cent of Serbs remain; the rest are
24 Muslims. Where did those Muslims now come from, and why are there no more
25 Serbs there? A part of the answer to that question would be provided when
1 answering the question as to what happened with the population as a whole
2 in the area.
3 However, from the legal point of view, our main submission here is
4 that every conflict of this kind, especially an armed conflict, contains
5 in it per definitio persecution; by definition, in other words, contains
6 persecution. There is no such conflict that does not contain
7 persecutions, and these become more and more pronounced as civilian
8 objectives are proclaimed to be legitimate military objectives. That is
9 why the Defence will insist upon the legal definition of persecution and a
10 concept that will be distinct from elements which are characteristic of
11 any armed conflict.
12 Closely connected to what has been said above is the quest for the
13 reasons for the formation of investigation centres or, as some call them,
14 camps. In the submission of the Defence, there are far more arguments in
15 favour of believing that the investigation centres or camps were the
16 product of the events of the 30th of May and not of the 30th of April,
17 1992. Therefore, it is our submission that there is more reason to
18 believe that the main cause for their formation was the attack on Prijedor
19 and not the Serb takeover of power.
20 Certainly, it cannot be said that the Serb takeover of power in
21 Prijedor was legal, but with regard to its legitimacy, we might even refer
22 to the Dayton Agreement. What is most important is that it was carried
23 out through the organisation of the highest representatives of the Serb
24 authorities in Prijedor and without any bloodshed. Furthermore, the
25 authorities in Sarajevo, devoid of Serb representatives at the time, had
1 lost their legitimacy.
2 On the other hand, the attack on Prijedor on the 30th of May, 1992
3 was neither legal nor legitimate. It was led by Slavko Ecimovic, who was
4 a declared Ustasha, and with the wholehearted assistance of Ismet Mesic,
5 the Hadzija, the boss of the local underground. It provoked many
6 casualties, dozens of dead, far more wounded, and a great deal of
7 devastation. The mentioned attack on Prijedor was not backed by the
8 authorities in Sarajevo, as Witness Azedin Oklopcic alleges, testifying
9 here on the 15th of May, 2000.
10 Finally, as can be seen from Prosecution exhibit, by decision of
11 the chief of the security centre, Simo Drljaca, the Omarska investigation
12 centre was in actual fact established in response to this attack on the
13 31st of May, 1992, and it is from then on that detainees were brought en
14 masse to Omarska and Keraterm.
15 Your Honours, the accused Zoran Zigic found himself in the midst
16 of this wartime whirlwind, a man who prior to the war did not have any
17 serious criminal record but who lived in the fast lane, partly also linked
18 to the occupations he engaged in. For a time he was a musician, but he
19 was also a driver and a taxi driver. In fact, he led a kind of bohemian
21 On the other hand, this life prompted many rumours, a great deal
22 of gossip and tales in a provincial environment such as Prijedor was,
23 especially as, by his beliefs of a modern young man, stood apart from his
24 provincial surroundings. Unfortunately, the life he led led him to a
25 passion that we would call a disease, which led him to develop a split
1 personality. What we are referring to is excessive consumption of alcohol
2 but also the use of soft drugs.
3 The war exacerbated all this, which is only logical and only to be
4 expected among individuals with such predispositions. This is confirmed
5 by the expert findings of two German psychiatrists, which we shall
6 certainly be tendering into evidence, but also quite a number of
7 Prosecution witnesses have spoken to that effect. And those were the
8 causes of his excesses, rather than any politics, ideology, or intolerance
9 towards members of other ethnicities.
10 Zoran Zigic had no interest in politics and he was never a member
11 of any political party, and there were very few people in former
12 Yugoslavia who were never members of any political parties. In
13 particular, he was never a member of the SDS. To corroborate that, we
14 tender certificate number 01/99, dated the 12th of January, 1999, and we
15 should like to tender it into evidence as our Exhibit D7/4.
16 MS. SOMERS: Your Honours, the Prosecution would ask for a moment
17 to voice its objection. In the clear language --
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Ms. Somers.
19 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Just for a moment, let me wait
21 for the translation. Go ahead, please.
22 MS. SOMERS: Thank you. The clear language of Rule 84 indicates
24 "Before presentation of evidence by the Prosecutor, each party
25 may make an opening statement. The Defence may, however, elect to make
1 its statement after the conclusion of the Prosecution's presentation of
2 evidence and before the presentation of evidence for the Defence."
3 Therefore, this is an inappropriate and impermissible time for
4 evidence to be submitted. If, in fact, at a later time, through a
5 witness, the Defence wishes to do so, the Prosecution would at that time
6 reconsider, but it objects to any evidence being introduced during opening
7 statement, according to the plain language of the Rule. Thank you. This,
8 of course, Your Honour, would cover the article that was submitted by
9 Mr. Kenney as well. We were going to wait until the end of the statement,
10 but because it is a continuing violation of the Rule, we thought it
11 appropriate to tell the Chamber our position.
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Stojanovic.
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it seems to me that
14 we interpret the Rules quite differently, and we feel that the Rules allow
15 us to make these -- to submit this evidence. We see no obstacle to us
16 tendering exhibits at this stage. Perhaps Ms. Somers feels we should call
17 Mr. George Kenney and then, through him, tender his article. Or should we
18 do it through a statement from a witness from Prijedor? Similarly, as
19 Zigic will not be testifying, we will not have the opportunity to provide
20 this certificate of the SDS through his testimony. In my personal
21 opinion, every exhibit, with full respect to the other party, and giving
22 an opportunity to the other side to have access to it, can be submitted to
23 the Court. At any stage, it is up to the Court to decide.
24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, but as you
25 know, this is not really the time to give the other party a chance to
1 state their position. This is an opening statement. It is a statement
2 which cannot be disputed at this stage, or challenged. So you see,
3 Mr. Stojanovic, this is an opening statement. It is not an occasion for
4 exchanges with the other party. So maybe you should wait and tender these
5 documents later on. In any event, please continue and we'll see at the
7 JUDGE WALD: I just want to clarify something. I assume there is
8 no problem in Mr. Stojanovic referring to these because Mr. Niemann
9 referred to hundreds of documents in his opening statement, or at least
10 dozens and dozens and dozens. You may be correct that they should be
11 tendered formally at a later point, but I just wanted to clarify that he's
12 certainly free, on the basis of precedent, to refer to the fact that we
13 will submit or it will be tendered to work it into his statement.
14 MS. SOMERS: Absolutely, Your Honour Judge Wald --
15 JUDGE WALD: I just wanted to clarify it. All right.
16 MS. SOMERS: -- opening statement. You're correct.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Judge Wald,
18 for reminding us of this. I also had that in mind.
19 But in any event, please proceed, Mr. Stojanovic. We are under
20 pressure to hear your evidence. So the opening statement is a kind of
21 practical framework. That is how I understand it, to set the framework
22 for the presentation of your case.
23 How much more time do you need to complete your statement,
25 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think another 30
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 minutes on the outside.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Perhaps we should now have a
3 break, then, because we have been working for an hour and a half. I was
4 hoping you would finish before the break. We have to make the best use of
5 the time. I hope you will not ask for an extension of time later on. So
6 make the best of your time, please.
7 We're now going to have a 30-minute break.
8 --- Recess taken at 10.50 a.m.
9 --- On resuming at 11.25 a.m.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Please be seated.
11 Mr. Stojanovic, please continue with your opening statement.
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you once again, Your
13 Honours. I shall do my best to speed things up, but after all, it is a
14 rather complex text which involves added effort on the part of our
15 interpreters, so that is why I went rather more slowly, and I think
16 another 15 or 20 minutes will bring me to the end of the statement.
17 I was talking about Mr. Zoran Zigic's personality, and allow me to
19 When he was intoxicated, he made excesses and this brought him
20 enemies. However, these instances of excessive behaviour were engaged in
21 entirely independently of the ethnicity of the persons he came into
22 conflict with and even regardless of whether it was wartime or peacetime.
23 Everything depended on the alcohol intake. Alcohol, as the cause of the
24 excesses, was more dominant than any other cause. That that is so can be
25 seen from the excess which brought Zigic to the prison in Banja Luka in
1 1993. And before the judgement became effective in the courts in Banja
2 Luka, he requested that he be transferred to The Hague and be tried on the
3 indictments of this Tribunal. He committed a serious crime against
4 members of the Serb ethnicity without any motives or reasons and not even
5 remembering what he had done and what had actually happened.
6 As I have said, it so happens that the Serbs were perhaps the most
7 frequent victims of these excesses of his, but those excesses against
8 Serbs were not described here, and what makes things even worse, they were
9 at times misrepresented before this Tribunal.
10 It was thus that it was not infrequent that Zigic should start a
11 quarrel, start to shout, insult, and swear, and even to beat persons of
12 Serb ethnicity but also of other ethnicities who happened to be in
13 Keraterm on some sort of business but not as detainees.
14 It is within this group that his conflict with Zivko Knezevic
15 could be put, him being one of the chiefs of Keraterm who prohibited any
16 food being brought to the detainees, to which Zigic reacted in a very
17 stormy manner.
18 However, when talking about such cases, the comments of
19 Prosecution witnesses always was, and I quote, "Zigic is again insulting
20 and beating detainees." Even his private family relationships have been
21 interpreted as war crimes on his part. That is how his family
22 relationship with his kum, Hasan Karabasic, in Trnopolje, was interpreted,
23 and terribly exaggerated, even though Prosecution witnesses themselves say
24 that while his kum was detained in Keraterm prior to this incident, Zigic
25 looked after him and provided him with parcels.
1 One of the important character traits of Zigic in those days was
2 that somebody's superiority over him meant nothing to him, and he himself
3 did not enjoy being superior to anyone else. So he didn't like anyone to
4 have authority over him, but neither did he seek to have authority over
5 others. This is a trait that is, in principle, completely out of
6 character for war criminals.
7 The Defence has pointed out on a number of occasions that on the
8 29th of May, 1992, Zigic was seriously injured, and much more will be said
9 about this injury by our expert witness, Dr. Mirko Barudzija. The injury,
10 which resulted in an amputation of part of his index finger on his left
11 hand, necessarily significantly affected several aspects of relevance for
12 this case. First of all, for a long time, Zigic could not beat anyone
13 with that hand, and should he exert any major effort with other parts of
14 the body, the injury caused pain.
15 Secondly, the psychological affects on Zigic, because he had lost
16 his left index finger, bearing in mind in particular the fact that he had
17 earned his living as a guitar player, were very significant for a long
19 Finally, that injury was a very visible identification element of
20 Zigic, and in that connection it can be seen that many Prosecution
21 witnesses made a crucial error when they allegedly identified Zigic during
22 the commission of a crime.
23 Dr. Barudzija will, together with the appropriate medical
24 documents, testify to the fact that Zigic acquired his scar on his chin on
25 the 19th of August, 1992, so that the Prosecution will have to explain how
1 several witnesses that they have called and whose testimony we have heard
2 claim that they recognised Zigic committing acts in June and July 1992 by
3 his typical scar on his chin.
4 We have said that the use of narcotics by Zigic turned him into a
5 split personality. We have already described one aspect of that
6 personality. However, when sober, he was generous towards everyone,
7 without expecting anything in return, again, regardless of the ethnic
8 background of those persons, both during the war and in peacetime. He
9 would give food, cigarettes, and everything else he had, paying little
10 attention to their value and his own needs. This other aspect of Zigic's
11 personality was described slightly by one or two Prosecution witnesses,
12 but Defence witnesses will say much more.
13 Your Honours, since 1993, that is, from the time Zoran Zigic was
14 taken into custody, he has not been drinking or taking drugs. You have
15 had occasion to hear from Prosecution witnesses descriptions about a
16 certain personality, or one side of that personality, and it is based on
17 those statements that the indictment was compiled. You now have before
18 you a different personality in the same person whom you are to judge, a
19 personality who is willing to cooperate and one that can be reintegrated
20 into society as stated by distinguished expert psychiatrists from Germany
21 who have been engaged by the Registry of this Tribunal.
22 However, Your Honours, the story about Zigic's personality is not
23 a plea for mercy but a plea for justice and truth, and we are convinced
24 that we will be able to show the truth, and that is that Zigic did not
25 persecute non-Serbs, that he did not commit murders, and that he did not
1 commit many of the other crimes which he is accused of in the indictment.
2 However, a court is not addressed with pleas for justice and truth; it is
3 what is expected of the court. However, Zigic's case is so complex that,
4 in our opinion, it seems to us to really require extraordinary attention,
5 effort, and understanding.
6 I sincerely hope that in the presentation of its case, the Defence
7 will assist the Trial Chamber to acquire a broader factual background and
8 more legal alternatives and thereby provide the Chamber what is expected
9 of it. The obligations of the Defence team in relation to the Trial
10 Chamber have to contribute to a just and fair decision being taken.
11 Your Honours, allow me to leave an argument or two for my closing
12 statement. So with your permission, I would end my opening statement
13 there. Thank you, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. Thank you very much,
15 Mr. Stojanovic. And now what is next?
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we should now like
17 to call our first witness, and that is Mrs. Soka Sikic. And with your
18 permission, I would request that my colleague Mr. Deretic assist me in the
19 continuation of these proceedings.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Stojanovic. I have a
21 question, but I see Ms. Susan Somers on her feet, so I'm going to give her
22 the floor first.
23 You have the floor, Ms. Somers.
24 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honour. I just wanted to confirm the
25 pronunciation of the witness's name. Is it Sikic or Zigic? It's
1 important for us because we follow the spelling of Sikic. Could you
2 confirm that, please? If I could ask the Court to confirm the name of the
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, the name is Sikic.
5 I was using the computer in the Defence room, and I couldn't find the
6 letter "sh," which is pronounced as s-h. "Sh," Sikic.
7 MS. SOMERS: Thank you very much.
8 JUDGE RIAD: Mr. Stojanovic, may I have just a comment on your
9 illustration of the common purpose, and just a friendly comment. You said
10 that perhaps the common purpose of the whole people working here, the
11 Defence, the Prosecution, the others, would be to take the money of the
12 United Nations. Perhaps you add to it "to see to it that the justice is
13 being done." That would be the primary common purpose. And suppose your
14 common purpose is the right one, the vague one. It is not a criminal
15 common purpose, after all. We are here considering criminal common
16 purpose. Thank you.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So, Mr. Stojanovic, I see on
18 your list of witnesses the name is Sikic Soka. I see that name. And
19 another question that I have for you, I thought that you or the accused
20 wanted to make a statement. I had the impression that he wanted to make a
21 statement. Am I wrong?
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, you are quite
23 right. For a moment I omitted to mention it, but that was one of the
24 things that I thought of prior to my opening statement.
25 We would like the accused to make a statement. It is up to the
1 Chamber to decide. We received an objection on the part of the opposing
2 party against it, and with your indulgence, allow me to give a few
3 arguments in favour of this statement which I consider would be useful.
4 The Prosecution feels that, if I translated the word properly, it
5 would be ridiculing the proceedings in court. However, in our submission,
6 it would be quite the opposite.
7 In August 2000, Zigic made a statement to psychiatrists, expert
8 witnesses designated by the Registry, and who informed him that they were
9 not obliged to keep confidential what he told them. Zigic did confess to
10 some minor acts which he is charged with. After that, Mr. Zigic's Defence
11 team requested that this expert witness finding with these admissions be
12 admitted into evidence. In doing so, Zigic acted fairly, in our
14 On the other hand, for more than a year now in this courtroom, we
15 have been looking at Mr. Zigic. Why not hear his voice as well and some
16 opinions of his? I believe that this would provide a better image to Your
17 Honours of the person they have been looking at. The impression may be
18 positive or negative. We would just like Your Honours to see and hear the
19 person whose fate is being decided.
20 The question of credibility of his statement is quite another
21 matter. However, it is our opinion that there is no real difference
22 between a statement by the accused given in this way and a statement of
23 the accused as a witness who has made a not guilty plea. Whether the
24 witness, as the accused, will incriminate himself and to what extent the
25 Trial Chamber will base its judgement on the statement of the witness or
1 the accused who pleads not guilty is up to the Trial Chamber.
2 Mr. Zigic is aware that in the case of such statements, there is
3 no cross-examination, but he also knows that the Trial Chamber may set the
4 frameworks or the limits of what he can speak about, and he is ready to
5 act within the confines of the framework set by the Trial Chamber.
6 The way we interpret Rule 84 bis, unlike the Prosecution, the
7 question of a solemn declaration being taken is not excluded. It just
8 says that the accused shall not be compelled to make a solemn
10 So that we believe that it would be useful for the Trial Chamber
11 to hear this witness to be able to assess his personality today. There
12 is, however, a problem of a technical nature there. I fear that the
13 spirit of that Rule indicates that this statement of his should be made at
14 least at the beginning of our case, and this may perhaps upset the order
15 of the presentation of evidence. So we would suggest that it take place
16 during the time scheduled for his testimony or any other time prior to
17 that should we have some room available or on our hands because a witness
18 doesn't appear or for some other reason.
19 Thank you, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. Ms. Susan Somers, there
21 seem to be here at least two questions, that is, the possibility of making
22 a statement and the properness of making such a statement,
24 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, last week the Prosecution gave in its
25 submission on its position on when a Rule 84 bis statement, often referred
1 to under other systems as a dock statement, is inappropriate by reading
2 the language of Rule 84 and 84 bis.
3 It is the position of the Prosecution that the application now by
4 accused Zigic is out of time. It is not timely and is barred.
5 The purpose behind an 84 bis statement is at the very earliest
6 opportunity to narrow issues and that, by the language of 84 bis, at the
7 latest, at the latest, would occur if the Defence for Zigic had deferred
8 its opening statement, which it in fact did, then immediately after the
9 opening statement of the Prosecution, which would be -- would have been
10 February 2000.
11 To allow accused Zigic now to have the benefit of manipulating a
12 story based on over a year of testimony, and further attempting now, at
13 the end of his own case, to manipulate his edition of facts, is not
14 consistent with the purpose of the Rule, which we understand is a
15 relatively common practice in European or continental jurisprudence, again
16 with the purpose of early on narrowing issues. That is not the purpose of
17 Zigic's attempt to get on the stand without cross-examination. His
18 purpose now, which is clear from timing, having listed himself in two
19 submissions as Witness 21 on his witness list, is that he finds it
20 inconvenient to have to submit to cross-examination. Inconvenience is not
21 what underlies this Rule. It would be effectively to gut the Rule of 84
22 bis to allow at this time that type of manoeuvre.
23 It is, of course, true that indication of intent to testify, under
24 85(C), which it is the Prosecution's position is the only avenue open to
25 Zigic now, having -- being outside of the time limits of 84 bis, an
1 accused is always free not to proceed to take the stand, but that should
2 not mean an automatic reversion to provision 84 bis, which has time limits
3 which are set forth, as we've indicated in our submission, with some
4 explanation by the -- I believe it was a commission or panel of experts,
5 as to the purpose for the Rule. There has been no precedent for this type
6 of untimely attempt to benefit from the statements of all their witnesses,
7 and we think it would be a very risky endeavour at this point to deviate
8 from the language of the Rule.
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Stojanovic, do you have a
10 quick reply?
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, I do have a
12 response. I am speaking on behalf of Mr. Zigic, without the right of the
13 Prosecution to cross-examine me. That is to say, I see nothing bad in
14 that. I'm speaking exclusively in Zigic's favour. Why should Zigic not
15 be allowed to say something? Of course, if Zigic abuses a fact by saying
16 something afterwards, the Trial Chamber is highly qualified to assess this
17 and to assess it as making his situation worse. It is our wish for the
18 Trial Chamber to hear Zigic as they hear everybody else, although this may
19 be an aggravating circumstance. And he might even bring up irrelevant
20 factors, but I think that he only wishes to speak about his relationship
21 towards the crimes he has been charged with, and I think that with that
22 statement, we would not upset any of the rights of the Prosecution, nor
23 would the Trial Chamber be placed in a position where, in a way, it
24 changes any of its convictions. It is a matter of credibility, at all
25 events, whether the Trial Chamber will attach any credibility or not to
1 the statement that Mr. Zigic might make. But I do feel that it would help
2 round off the picture painted as to the character of Mr. Zigic, and that
3 is why we put the suggestion forward in the first place. Thank you, Your
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Just a moment. The Judges will
7 [Trial Chamber confers]
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Stojanovic, is Mr. Zigic
9 ready to make a statement straight away, and if so, how long would he need
10 for that statement? How long would it take? You may take a few moments
11 to confer with your client, if necessary.
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I would like
13 to avail myself of that opportunity. Thank you.
14 [Defence counsel and accused confer]
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour, and I
16 thank the Court for its indulgence. As for the time that it would take
17 Mr. Zigic, he thinks that one day would be required for his statement.
18 But I don't think I have understood the provision, because it allows for
19 the possibility of the Trial Chamber to set the frameworks of that
20 examination. We should like to ask the Trial Chamber to enable this at
21 some later date, but if that would mean that we would not have a chance of
22 doing so at a later date, then perhaps it would be advisable for us to do
23 it now, although we have witnesses waiting, they have been scheduled to
24 appear this week, and I feel that we will have very little time to get
25 through all the witnesses on our schedule for this week.
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Ms. Susan Somers, you have the
3 MS. SOMERS: Of course, Your Honour, we repeat all of our
4 foregoing objections, but we would indicate that should the Chamber, over
5 our objection, permit an 84 bis statement to occur, it would be, in our
6 opinion, an abuse by Mr. Zigic to be permitted to do so at the close of
7 his case, inasmuch as that certainly -- that really flies in the face of
8 the intention of the Rule. And if the Chamber does permit this type of
9 statement to be given, over our objection, we would urge that it be done
10 immediately under the strict control of the Chamber. Again, we feel the
11 whole process is inappropriate, but should the Chamber make a decision
12 otherwise, that it happen now, because I think it would really skew any
13 value at a later time and really fly in the face of the Rule.
14 [Trial Chamber deliberates]
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Concerning this issue, the
16 Chamber renders the following decision: The Chamber notes that the
17 accused Mr. Zigic proposed to testify as a witness at a given moment,
18 point in time; at another point in time, the Defence stated that they
19 would like to have the statement of the accused. According to Rule 84
20 bis, statement of the accused, the Chamber notes that Rule 84 bis provides
21 for this possibility for the accused after the opening statement by the
22 Prosecutor. But bearing in mind the specific features of this case,
23 notably, the fact that we have five accused, there would be no sense in
24 having the accused make a statement at a distant time, at a time removed.
25 Therefore, each Defence counsel makes its opening statement before the
1 presentation of evidence. Therefore, there is sense in having the
2 statement of the accused as a continuation of the opening statement. In
3 that sense, the Chamber accepts the facts that the accused Mr. Zigic may
4 make a statement along the lines and in the sense of Rule 84 bis. And as
5 the Rule states, the accused shall not be compelled to make a solemn
6 declaration and shall not be examined about the content of the statement.
7 That is to say, the accused, from his point of view, has two opportunities
8 of pronouncing himself. First of all, the opportunity within Rule 84 bis
9 and the statement of the accused and the opportunity of appearing as
10 witness within the frameworks of Rule 85(C): "If the accused so desires,
11 the accused may appear as a witness in his or her own defence."
12 So it may be done within the frameworks of Rule 84 bis and can
13 also be presented as a witness, but it is up to us to discipline and
14 organise this debate. But not within the sense of Rule 84 bis can he make
15 this statement after the presentation of evidence has been produced.
16 Therefore, Mr. Zigic can either make the statement now or he forfeits the
17 right to make the statement.
18 Taking note of the circumstances, the Chamber gives the accused
19 Mr. Zigic the opportunity of making his statement under those provisions
20 and with that proviso.
21 What we are now going to do is to take a lunch break at this
22 point. We adjourn for lunch, and this will give Mr. Zigic the right to
23 prepare his statement, which cannot exceed 45 minutes. The Chamber also
24 notes that once the accused Mr. Zigic is prepared to take the stand, he
25 will be presenting some of his ideas, but we must also bear in mind the
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 fact that this statement is also covered by point (B) of Rule 84 bis,
2 which states that: "The Trial Chamber shall decide on the probative
3 value, if any, of the statement."
4 That, therefore, is the ruling of the Trial Chamber. It has
5 decided to give the accused Mr. Zigic the opportunity of making the
6 statement based on the provisions of Rule 84 bis. We accord him a pause,
7 which gives him time to prepare, and with the proviso that the statement
8 of the accused does not exceed 45 minutes.
9 That is the ruling of the Chamber, and having said that, we are
10 going to take a 50-minute lunch break. We adjourn the hearing and return
11 at 1.00.
12 --- Recess taken at 12.10 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 1.00 p.m.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Please be seated.
15 Mr. Stojanovic, we are going to proceed with the statement by the
16 accused. We are of the opinion, as the text states, that as the accused
17 did not make the solemn declaration, that that is to say, the accused
18 shall make the declaration from where he is sitting.
19 The other thing that I want to say is, of course, that the
20 statement has as its basic framework and subject the indictment itself, so
21 it cannot step outside the frameworks of the indictment.
22 I should like to ask the usher, before we proceed, if the
23 microphone of the accused Mr. Zigic can be switched on for Mr. Zigic to be
24 able to make his statement.
25 Yes, Mr. Stojanovic?
1 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I really do
2 appreciate you taking this ruling and allowing us to proceed in this way.
3 Mr. Zigic is ready to take the solemn declaration if need be before he
4 goes ahead with his statement. He is ready to do so if you feel that that
5 is what we should --
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] No. We mustn't mix things up,
7 Mr. Stojanovic. Let us not mix up the issues. I think the Chamber is
8 very clear. He is either going to make his statement in conformity with
9 Rule 84 bis, which states: "The accused shall not be compelled to make a
10 solemn declaration and shall not be examined about the content of the
12 That is what the Rule states. And as I say, this is not something
13 that I like to say with respect to the civil law system, the accused has
14 always the right to lie. Now, we interpret this in the best possible way,
15 of course, but it is up to Mr. Zigic to make his declaration under the
16 terms that he sees fit, but as I say, with the only proviso that it be
17 limited to the indictment, and that is why we have made the distinction of
18 having the accused resume his place and not to go into the witness box and
19 make his statement in the capacity of a witness and to take the solemn
20 declaration. That is why we distinguished between the two positions. As
21 you know, non-verbal communication is sometimes more -- is sometimes
22 stronger than the verbal kind.
23 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] We accept certainly, Your
24 Honours. The only dilemma is whether we will stay here and put questions
25 to him or whether Mr. Zigic will speak himself. If we are asking
1 questions, then it would be better, it seems to me, for us to go back to
2 our original places.
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Stojanovic, I think I must
4 make myself clear once again. There's no question. The accused shall not
5 be compelled to make a solemn declaration and shall not be examined about
6 the content of the statement either by the Prosecution or by the Defence
7 counsel or by the Judges, not even for clarifications. This is simply a
9 So if you wish to go back to your place, it's up to you. If not,
10 Mr. Zigic will make his statement from his place. As you prefer.
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] In that case, Your Honour, we
12 would go back to our seats, but with your permission, allow me to give him
13 back his notes. Thank you very much.
14 May we stay here after all? I'm sorry.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] It seems my colleague and I
17 differ in our views.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Stojanovic, the Rules do not
19 specify where you have to sit, so it's up to you to choose.
20 Regarding the statement, pursuant to the provisions of Rule 84
21 bis, I give the floor to the accused, Mr. Zigic.
22 You have the floor. If you prefer to speak seated, you may do
24 THE ACCUSED ZIGIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, thank you. I
25 would prefer to stand, out of respect for this Honourable Court. I should
1 like to use some notes that I made and put on paper, and following your
2 instructions, I will focus only on the points made in the indictment, so I
3 will leave out much of what I intended to say about me personally - my
4 work, my family, and so - otherwise I will not be able to fit into the
5 time allotted to me.
6 I spent most of my life outside my native town of Prijedor. For a
7 time I worked in the Soviet Union and for a time in the Federal Republic
8 of Germany, for a total of four or five years. For quite some time I
9 worked in Zagreb in Croatia and also in Pula, which is also in Croatia,
10 and for a time I lived and worked in Prijedor. I worked as a taxi driver
11 and was a professional musician at the same time, and that is how I made
12 my livelihood. Just before the beginning of the war, I fled from Pula,
13 and I wouldn't like to go into the circumstances and tire this Chamber
14 with the details.
15 I arrived in Prijedor on the 31st of December, 1991, and until the
16 29th of April, 1992, I wasn't doing anything, actually. I had no job. I
17 stayed in my parents' house, together with my wife and two children. On
18 the 29th of April, 1992, I got my call-up papers. In the meantime, one
19 could notice in town, a town I knew very well -- and I live on the
20 outskirts of the town, but I spent most of my time in the centre of town
21 and most of my friends were there. I didn't care whether they were Serbs,
22 Muslims or Croats. That was quite unimportant to me. In fact, I had more
23 Muslim friends than I did Serbs. That is no longer important. But
24 tension could be felt in town, because I spent a lot of my time in cafes
25 and restaurants. As I was a musician, this was normal. There was some
1 intolerance, ethnic tension, verbal insults were exchanged, not physical
2 yet, and I got the call-up on the 29th of April to report to the Prijedor
3 police station number 1 centre. I was surprised, because I was a military
4 conscript and I was never a reserve policeman. I was very surprised and I
5 reported and was assigned to providing security for the SUP building.
6 Throughout May, that is what I did, and the assignments were the usual
7 security assignments for the SUP building itself. I had no other duties.
8 During the armed conflicts in Kozarac on the 24th of May, I was
9 part of the security forces of the Prijedor police station. I was aware,
10 more or less, what was happening in the armed conflict. My native
11 village, Balte, is right next to Kozarac, and it was normal that my family
12 should be concerned. My father and mother were worried, and they sent me
13 to visit the village to visit my relatives to see if they needed anything,
14 if I could help them in any way. So I went. I went alone, using my own
15 private car, and a couple of kilometres prior to arriving at my uncle's
16 house I was attacked by a group of armed men. I didn't know who they
17 were. Of course, I was very cautious and I resisted. I can quite frankly
18 say I was afraid, and in that fear and haste -- I don't know how to
19 explain it. I had in the vehicle a hand grenade, and as I was running
20 short of ammunition, I used the hand grenade, but due to haste and fear
21 and lack of caution, I injured and cut off the index finger on my left
22 hand myself. In the meantime, some villagers from my village arrived, and
23 they helped me repulse this attack by a group of armed people, who, I
24 learned later, were Muslims from Kozarac.
25 After that, I went back to Prijedor, together with my cousin, who
1 took me to the hospital. I underwent surgery. I had to stay -- I was
2 supposed to stay in hospital, but I refused, because in those days the
3 hospital was extremely busy with more serious cases and I thought of
4 myself as somebody with a light injury. I said I would stay home, I would
5 be disciplined, I would come for regular treatment and therapy to the
6 hospital. And that was the period when I refrained from taking any
7 alcohol because of the medicines I was taking. However, nevertheless,
8 sometimes I did have a drink, which had its consequences, so that I got an
9 inflammation of the hand, and the 21st of May I had to go to hospital,
10 where I stayed until the 26th of June -- I'm sorry, the 21st of June was
11 the date. Then my finger was treated and the wound cleansed and I was
12 discharged, and I wore bandages until the end of July, roughly.
13 As regarding my stay in Keraterm, I was in Keraterm. I was a
14 guard there. On the 2nd of June, 1992, my now deceased commander, Mirko
15 Paras [phoen], rounded up the squad that was securing the SUP building and
16 said that we no longer needed to do that but that he needed a unit to
17 secure the Keraterm investigation centre. I have to be very sincere in
18 addressing Your Honours and say that I didn't know that any such thing
19 existed. But again to be frank, driving along the Banja Luka road on the
20 29th of May, I had to see Keraterm, and I did see it, and I saw a group of
21 people at the gates to the Keraterm but I didn't know what it was about.
22 On the 2nd of June, when we reached Keraterm, I found there a
23 dreadful situation. That is the only word I can use for it.
24 The first room in Keraterm, which the detainees called Room 1,
25 maybe this was by chance, but it so happened that the people there were
1 people I knew well in that room. Most of them were my friends. I can
2 call them friends, not acquaintances.
3 I found this very hard to bear. I do not wish to name those
4 persons, but they were dear to me. I saw them lying on pallets, and we've
5 heard evidence about that. I found that very difficult and hard to
7 I am a rather hot-blooded person, and I have a rather nasty
8 tongue, as we say it, so I cursed, I swore. I didn't really care whether
9 they were Serbs or Muslims or my colleagues from the police station. I
10 simply had to let go of my feelings, and I did so by making a lot of noise
11 and curses, and I would be prone to slap someone, whoever was close by,
12 regardless of whether he was a Serb or a Muslim. I would be prone to do
14 I did my best to spend as little time as possible in Keraterm. I
15 can't say that the crimes that I heard referred to here happened - that is
16 out of the question - but the very fact that they were there, how unkempt
17 they were, the stench, it is something that no one can describe that
18 hasn't experienced it, the stench of filth and unsanitary conditions.
19 So I didn't spend much time there. I am an extremely emotional
20 person, and I found it very hard to see my friends there, but I had no
21 power to assist them except for giving some of them food, cigarettes,
22 sometimes alcohol, too, as we were comrades in terms of drink as well.
23 I spent ten days in Keraterm, not more. During that ten-day
24 period and throughout that period, I didn't spend more than eight hours
25 there because I spent very little time there. I would be there for 10,
1 20 minutes, sometimes an hour, and then go to the closest bar.
2 Fortunately, right next to Keraterm there were a couple of bars, places
3 where, anyway, I had spent most of my life.
4 Since I was touched upon Keraterm, I should like to refer to the
5 indictment in specific terms and counts from the indictment, and later on
6 I would like to explain my position in relation to the indictment when I
7 received it in 1996.
8 I don't know exactly the number of the count charging me of brutal
9 beating and killing a person called Sead Jusufagic, known as Car, and
10 Emsud Bahonjic. I should like to tell this Honourable Trial Chamber, from
11 the bottom of my soul, what actually happened on that occasion.
12 I was horrified when I read some of the witness statements as well
13 as the indictment. I am aware of such an event. I know that this
14 happened to a person called -- known as Car and Bahonjic. I was present.
15 The attack on the town of Prijedor took place on the 30th of May,
16 1992. Both these persons were captured during the attack on the town with
17 weapons in their hands. Prosecution witnesses have confirmed that.
18 The person known as Emsud Bahonjic is somebody I had never seen in
19 my life. I don't know him. As for Sead Jusufagic, known as Car, he is
20 somebody I knew very well. He comes from the town of Prijedor. He is a
21 petty criminal who spent almost his entire life in gaol. Physically, he's
22 very slight, not more than 40 kilos in weight, and according to
23 information of inspectors who carried out an investigation with him, we
24 were told, in an informal conversation, that this person, Sead Jusufagic,
25 had a M53 machine-gun with which he had taken part in the attack on the
1 town. I found that rather funny, because such weapons from the Second
2 World War were almost as heavy as he was. At the same time, I was bitter
3 because particularly in the area where he was active was the area where
4 the largest number of Serb policemen and soldiers were killed.
5 Looking at the event from the present-day perspective, I certainly
6 wouldn't do that, what I did, but in that situation, as I was a
7 participant in what was happening, I knew almost all the people who had
8 lost their lives on that occasion, and even the Muslims who were killed, I
9 knew most of them too, those that were killed during the attack.
10 I didn't wish to take my revenge on Car. I wanted to humiliate
11 him. I forced him. I emptied his machine-gun and ordered him to put it
12 on his shoulder and to run round in a circle carrying it.
13 I repeat, if this were to happen today after so many years, I
14 wouldn't have done that, but at that time, that was how things were. And
15 I feel deep remorse for doing what I did. But what happened later with
16 Car will be shown through the Defence witnesses who were present at the
18 While Car was running around in a circle, I myself don't know
19 why - I was quite intoxicated - I hit him with my leg once. I kicked him,
20 and that was all that I did to Car.
21 I got on my motorcycle and left Keraterm to a bar. I don't know
22 exactly which one, but I know I left.
23 What later happened to Car, to be quite frank, I don't know, and I
24 didn't know until I received the indictment. I didn't know that the man
25 had been killed.
1 As far as Emsud Bahonjic is concerned, as I have said, I didn't
2 know the person, but I am aware of the incident in which he was involved.
3 It occurred one day before or one day after this incident with Car.
4 My acquaintance, Dusko Knezevic, who is also on the indictment,
5 lost his brother, who was underaged, who was killed by his Muslim
6 neighbours during combat activities in the area of Kozarac. The brother
7 was 17 and a half. He was unarmed. His school friends caught him and cut
8 him up and mutilated him with knives.
9 He came to Keraterm to interrogate Muslims he knew regarding the
10 circumstances of the death of his brother. I have to be quite frank and
11 say that Dusko Knezevic, known as Duca, was extremely arrogant. Nobody
12 could oppose him. And to be quite frank, I didn't even try to oppose him
13 because I knew that he lost his brother and that he wanted to know who
14 were the killers of his brother. Nobody opposed him, though there were a
15 large number of people present, guards and other people who had come with
17 He called out a number of people that he knew and the names he
18 knew. I personally did not know any of them, though later on, I saw from
19 the statement that a number of them from Kozarac, I still didn't know
21 There was beating and curses and coercion. At one point, Duca hit
22 with his truncheon a good friend of mine who was an Albanian by origin,
23 Ismet, and I said to Duca, "Why are you hurting that man?" and then he hit
24 me, too, with his truncheon. I was dumbfounded, and I didn't oppose him
25 from then on. Then witnesses of the Prosecution mentioned this incident
1 in which I did not participate, even though I was present.
2 Regarding the count of the indictment charging me with the
3 murder -- alleged murder of Mr. Drago Tokmadzic, I don't know that the man
4 was killed, nor is there any evidence to prove that he was killed.
5 I know Mr. Drago Tokmadzic very well, as a policeman. We would
6 often have a drink together. And I must tell this Honourable Court that I
7 always thought that he was a Serb. I never could conclude that he was of
8 any other ethnicity. I'm still convinced that he's a Serb. However, from
9 some Prosecution documents, I see that he's a Croat. I never saw
10 Mr. Tokmadzic in Keraterm.
11 Mr. Huse Ganic testified here in Court. He's a person I know
12 extremely well. It was only here that I read his statement, because I
13 didn't receive him in Banja Luka in 1996/1997. It was only when I came
14 here that I read his statement, and I am horrified by the lies that it
15 contains and the lies he repeated here in court.
16 I should remind the Honourable Chamber that Mr. Huse Ganic
17 expressed the wish to shake my hand, and I was ready to give him my hand
18 after all those lies, but a misunderstanding occurred. In my gesture, I
19 was trying to ask my attorney whether that was permissible, and His Honour
20 the Presiding Judge thought from my gesture that I didn't want to shake
21 hands. But that doesn't matter now. I was ready to shake hands with Huse
22 Ganic, although he uttered some dreadful lies against me during his
24 In Keraterm, as I have said, I stayed a maximum of ten days, a
25 maximum of ten days. And my whole -- during the time I spent in Keraterm,
1 I had terrible problems with my hand. I was suffering severe pain, and I
2 had to take sedatives, painkillers, strong ones, but the circumstances
3 were such that I was not able to control myself, and then I would also
4 drink while taking these sedatives, which led to even more complications.
5 During that period, sometime around the 10th of June - this was
6 the 10th, and I think it was my last day in Keraterm because that's when I
7 left - we were in the restaurant of the Oskar -- Oskar restaurant in
8 Prijedor, a group of us, 10 or 15 of us, in fact. Most of them were my
9 friends and acquaintances. Somebody spontaneously said that we should go
10 to Omarska, to the Evropa restaurant to have lunch there. We accepted
11 that proposal and went off. We went off in a minibus which was used in
12 the investigation centre at Keraterm. The driver was Tomo Prodan. As I
13 said, there were ten or fifteen of us. I can't give you the exact number,
14 neither can I state the names of all the people. Some of the people I
15 don't wish to name because there's no need to, and those who are on the
16 indictment, that is not a secret to the Trial Chamber. They were with me.
17 In the Evropa restaurant someone quite spontaneously brought up
18 the question of the Omarska Investigation Centre and said that it
19 existed. I did not know that it existed at all. That is to say, I had
20 never seen the Omarska mine complex. I had never visited the mine complex
21 before the war, and that was the first time, and I was surprised that
22 anything like that existed in Omarska at all, because I had envisaged the
23 Omarska mine in quite a different way.
24 Not to take up too much time, let me say that we arrived in
25 Omarska and one of my colleagues took me to the infamous "white house."
1 In the second room on the left-hand side, I found a very dear friend of
2 mine, Brkic Abdulah, who had been in Keraterm for a time, and he testified
3 here as well and said that he thought that the two of us were friends, and
4 let me take advantage of this opportunity to say that I too considered us
5 to be friends. And upon the insistence of the Defence that he testify for
6 the Defence, he changed his story the next day, the story he gave first,
7 and then in his second version, he told a number of lies. I can't
8 understand why he did this. I'm not going to blame anybody else; I'm just
9 going to blame him, because he was the one that stated those lies,
10 although in the first statement he made, 90 per cent of what he said was
11 the truth, and all I wanted was for him to tell the truth.
12 I talked to him, and at one point [redacted] was brought,
13 and I always had every respect for him before the war, and I can say that
14 during the war I respected him too and I have even more respect for him
15 now, today. Some parts with regard to [redacted] -- I cannot say some
16 things in respect to him because identities would be disclosed, and it
17 is -- but it is important, if the Trial Chamber wants to hear something
18 about this, then I would like to ask for a private session for a minute or
19 two so I can tell you about it.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, one or two minutes of
21 private session. Let us move into private session, please.
22 [Private session]
13 Page 9464 redacted – private session
25 [Open session]
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Zigic, you may proceed. We
2 are in open session.
3 THE ACCUSED ZIGIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your
5 I have also been accused of the killing of Mr. Becir Medunjanin in
6 the indictment, and an individual under the nickname Hankin Ramic,
7 Hankin. I know neither of those two individuals. I heard of them first
8 of all when I encountered their names in the papers I got from the
9 Prosecution. I don't know Mr. Becir Medunjanin's son Anes either, and
10 therefore, understandably, I can't say anything about him, and this would
11 disclose certain identities, and we can't lose time going into private
12 session again.
13 As far as the collection centre in Trnopolje is concerned, my
14 lawyer, Mr. Stojanovic, explained the abuse of certain witnesses who
15 testified here with respect to Mr. Hasan Karabasic. That was a man I
16 liked. He is my kum, the kum to my family, and the kum to my uncle as
17 well, my father's brother. I was very close to him while I was in
18 Keraterm. I cared for him, I brought him food and cigarettes, and on one
19 occasion, that is to say, the only occasion that I went to Trnopolje, I
20 happened to meet Mr. Karabasic. And it is difficult for me to bring home
21 to the Trial Chamber what happened, what kind of meeting we had. It was a
22 meeting as if we met on the street. Not only did we -- at one point we
23 hugged each other -- at one point he fell down and I extended an arm to
24 help him. Now, some people had probably seen that and represented to the
25 Trial Chamber that I had hit him, which is completely out of the
1 question. I wanted my lawyers to reach Mr. Karabasic and to ask him to
2 come here and testify, and in fact he was on our list at one point for
3 witnesses, but unfortunately he is unaccessible and we don't know where he
4 is at present, to clear that up.
5 I should like now to focus about my knowledge on the indictment
6 and the supporting material. I learnt of the indictment for the first
7 time in 1995, but I didn't know the contents of the indictment. It was
8 from the media that I learnt that I had been accused of war crimes and
9 indicted by The Hague Tribunal. Through force of circumstance, I happened
10 to meet Mr. Milan Vujin, who was the lawyer in the Tadic case and who came
11 to visit me in the military detention in Banja Luka and expressed the
12 desire for me to appear as a witness to testify for Mr. Tadic. I accepted
13 doing so, but I had an informal conversation with him, and he brought the
14 indictment along and gave it to me and the supporting material of a large
15 number of witnesses. I had all this in Banja Luka.
16 When I read the indictment itself and everything that I was being
17 accused of and the counts against me, I was horrified, and when I
18 read -- I had the -- and all the statements that I saw from the people,
19 although they weren't my friends. I had never heard of those events
20 taking place at all, let alone that I was the perpetrator. Then I gave
21 serious thought to appearing before this Tribunal in order to prove the
22 contrary. I was never afraid of the indictment. The indictment is a very
23 serious one. I am accused of grievous, terrible crimes, but I was not
24 afraid. I am not afraid today either. I am only sorry that I have
25 limited time at my disposal, whereas I would like to say many, many
1 things. But why I have taken this step is that I wish to avoid
2 provocations by the Prosecution, because I have been listening to them now
3 for three years and I am not ready psychologically for them. I'm still
4 not psychologically ready to be able to contend with them.
5 I skipped a portion with respect to the indictment and the time I
6 spent -- that is to say, after I left Keraterm, because the indictment
7 states that I was present on the 24th of July, during what I can freely
8 call the massacre at Keraterm. On the 24th, that cannot be possible,
9 because on the 24th of July I was in the courtyard of my parents' house
10 with my very dear friends. I cannot say that we had gathered together for
11 any happy celebration. We had gathered together to commemorate the death
12 of my 21-year-old friend who had actually been killed that day, a lovely
13 man, so that we sat there and we had quite a lot to drink. I went to bed
14 and went to sleep, and I heard of the incident only the next day when I
15 was in town in one of the bars that I frequented, because the town was --
16 tongues were wagging about the incident and what had happened.
17 There is a lot that I could say with respect to my indictment;
18 however, I don't have the time to do so. I could go into the details. I
19 interpreted the Rule differently. I'm not a legal man myself, and I
20 relied on the good offices of Mr. Stojanovic, who has a better
21 understanding of the law. I thought that I would be asked questions by
22 the Judges, by Your Honours, and I would be happy to assist the Trial
23 Chamber to throw more light around the events relating to my indictment
24 and the charges in it. But as I can see, that would be impossible, and so
25 in the context of all this I fear that I have left something vital out,
1 some important matter out. I'm sure that I probably have. All I can say,
2 in general terms, is that I have every confidence in this Tribunal and in
3 this Honourable Trial Chamber that they will bring in a just judgement.
4 I do not want to skirt my responsibilities for the things that I
5 am responsible for. I don't wish to say that I was a good man in 1992. I
6 most certainly wasn't. I wasn't good to myself, and therefore, by the
7 same token, I wasn't good to anyone else. And unfortunately, I can
8 ascribe most of that to alcohol, but then it is my fault for bringing
9 myself into that state. You know, sometimes one is not always able to
10 control oneself. Something breaks in you.
11 All those images, everything that happened, and looking at all the
12 people that were very dear to me, I couldn't understand that -- for
13 example, let me -- Mr. Brkic, for example, Brkic and I can be at other
14 sides of the gun barrel. This was something that I could not have
15 conceived of, and not only for Mr. Brkic, but for other people in Prijedor
16 too, and I think that the people listening to me today share my opinion
17 and views. Unfortunately, because of the few extremists on all three
18 sides, these terrible conflicts occurred in our town. This Tribunal and
19 the truth that has emerged before this Tribunal -- and that is why I have
20 asked to be able to speak, I would like to be believed. I would like the
21 Trial Chamber to believe me. I have no reason to lie. But I should also
22 like to warn you, Your Honours, that I have heard some terrible, horrific
23 lies from some Prosecution witnesses.
24 The only thing I'm sorry about is that I won't have a chance of
25 answering any questions that you might have with respect to the counts in
1 the indictment. I made the firm decision to appear before this Tribunal
2 and I had contacts with the government of the Republika Srpska and the
3 deputy justice minister in 1996, and at the time the chief of police of
4 the police station in Prijedor was still the late Mr. Drljaca.
5 Mr. Drljaca opposed this. I know that by talking to Mr. Vujin. He said
6 that he had terrible difficulties because Mr. Drljaca did not permit
7 anybody to appear in the Tadic case as a witness who was from Prijedor. I
8 don't know how the late Mr. Drljaca learnt that I was thinking of giving
9 myself up, but I do know that they exerted great pressure on me.
10 Inspectors from Prijedor came to see me, to caution me, to warn me, and
11 say that I would only be able to go to The Hague dead, a dead man. But
12 luckily, I was in a military investigation centre and therefore protected
13 under the jurisdiction of the army, and I was relatively safe. My life
14 was not in jeopardy; I can't say that it was.
15 Through force of circumstance, Mr. Drljaca lost his life in the
16 well-known events. I need not recount them here. And in 1997, at the end
17 of 1997, I had a very serious conversation relating to giving myself up,
18 my surrender, which took place in 1998. And I'm sure the President knows
19 about this, because I have a piece of paper with your signature, Your
20 Honour. You saw to my transfer from Banja Luka to The Hague. That paper
21 was signed by you.
22 Let me now say a few words about the period I spent in the UN
23 Detention Centre. I must say quite frankly and openly, I can only say
24 thank you to you, thank you to all the staff in the United Nations
25 Detention Unit in Scheveningen. I cannot single out anybody, because all
1 of them are generally good people. They're all professionals and we have
2 been accepted there first of all as human beings. Nobody treats us as
3 criminals or looks at us as criminals, and it has not been proved that we
4 are criminals yet. We shall see which ones of us are criminals and who
5 are not.
6 I should also like to thank the registry, because they have
7 enabled me to get married under these very specific and extraordinary
8 circumstances. I did get married, and that is once again thanks to the
9 organisation, to the registry, and the Tribunal, for allowing me to do so,
10 and my wife is expecting a son. That is to say, my wife gave birth to a
11 son on the 15th of September, as a result of the marriage, and I can say
12 that I'm a very happy man in that respect.
13 The isolation or semi-isolation from civilisation has had a great
14 effect on me as a person in my thoughts and deliberations, and believe me,
15 I have a lot of time for thought. I very often think back to the year
16 1992 and the events that took place in that year, and if everything were
17 to be repeated and if I were to go back to my native town in 1992, I can't
18 say that I would have fled, that I would have fled, but quite certainly I
19 wouldn't have acted in the way I did. I would try to find my way about
20 things, as many other people did. I would have perhaps driven a vehicle,
21 tried to isolate myself from some of the direct events that took place and
22 direct conflicts, or something of that kind.
23 I had a great deal of time to think about all those things, so it
24 is understandable that I'm able to come to that conclusion today after all
25 that thought. Everything that happened in 1992, we have heard a lot about
1 those events here from various witnesses, the events. I don't want to
2 refer the witnesses as Prosecution witnesses or Defence witnesses. They
3 were eyewitnesses, those people who were there. We have heard a lot of
4 truth about the events, and it is painful. The truth is painful for all
5 of us who come from that town and, of course, for me too.
6 By taking this opportunity, as this is an open, public trial, I
7 call upon all the citizens of Prijedor, the Muslims, if they consider that
8 I have wronged them in any way, it is still not too late. They can come
9 to this Honourable Tribunal and testify against Zoran Zigic if they feel
10 fit to do so. I am quite calm and collected in saying that because I know
11 that I never committed any major serious crimes.
12 If this Trial Chamber does consider that I committed a crime, I
13 will agree with the judgement. I will accept any judgement that this
14 august Trial Chamber brings, because I personally believe that I did make
15 mistakes. And even if I just slapped somebody, that was a mistake and a
16 crime, too, under those conditions.
17 On this occasion, the person that [redacted] exaggerated
18 the event, but that, too, is understandable. [redacted], I should
19 like to deeply apologise and hope that one day I will emerge from all
20 that, that I will meet [redacted], and that I personally will be able
21 to express my sincere remorse and repentance for the harm I did him.
22 I think [redacted] was not in pain because [redacted]
23 What hurt him was because he has a staunch character and his name is
24 respected in our town and it was more the humiliation that pained him
25 rather than the act itself, and I profoundly I apologise to him. I
1 express my deep remorse and repentance to all who consider I wronged them
2 in any way during the war. But I consider that I didn't -- that --
3 although the -- some of my gestures must have pained them.
4 I thank this Honourable Trial Chamber and you, Mr. President, for
5 having allowed me this brief time to stand up and make a statement of my
6 own. If this Trial Chamber deems necessary, I am always ready to answer
7 any questions frankly and openly. Thank you very much once again for
8 giving me this opportunity.
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. Thank you, Mr. Zigic.
10 Please be seated. As you know, we're not going to ask you any questions
11 because that is the ruling.
12 I did not wish to interrupt Mr. Zigic's statement, but I saw
13 Ms. Susan Somers on her feet. So, Ms. Susan Somers, you have the floor
15 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, without going into any detail because we
16 are in open session, I would ask that the appropriate redactions be made
17 upon reviewing some of what was just said by Mr. Zigic. If the Chamber
18 wishes to go for a second into private, I will indicate what needs
19 redaction. Otherwise, I would ask for the opportunity to make sure that
20 it does not go out without redaction.
21 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Let us move into private session
22 for a few moments, please.
23 [Private session]
14 [Open session]
15 [The witness entered court]
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Ms. Sikic. Can
17 you hear me?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, I can. Good
19 afternoon, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You will now read the solemn
21 declaration given to you by the usher, please.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
23 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be seated.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
1 WITNESS: SOKA SIKIC
2 [Witness answered through interpreter]
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Please approach the microphones
4 and make yourself as comfortable as possible, and thank you very much for
5 coming. You will first be answering questions by Mr. Deretic.
6 You have the floor. Your witness, Mr. Deretic.
7 Examined by Mr. Deretic:
8 Q. Ms. Sikic, can you hear me?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Would you be kind enough to introduce yourself. Tell us your name
11 and surname and the name of your father.
12 A. My name is Soka Sikic. My father's name is Miro Rajlic.
13 Q. When were you born and where?
14 A. I was born on the 2nd of February, 1956, in the village of
15 Podvidaca, Sanski Most municipality.
16 Q. What are you by occupation?
17 A. I'm a butcher, a trades -- salesperson.
18 Q. Are you employed?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Where do you live now?
21 A. I'm now living in Prijedor.
22 Q. Are you married?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Do you have children?
25 A. Yes, I have two children; a son of 23 and a daughter of 18.
1 Q. Will you tell us what your ethnicity and religion is.
2 A. I am a Serb by ethnicity, of Orthodox faith.
3 Q. What about your husband?
4 A. My husband is a Croat of Catholic faith.
5 Q. Do you know Zoran Zigic?
6 A. I do know Zoran Zigic. I've known him since 1980, when we moved
7 to the district where Zoran Zigic had been living from before.
8 Q. Can you identify him in this room?
9 A. I can.
10 Q. Can you tell us where he's seated.
11 A. To my left, over there, right facing me.
12 Q. I'm going too fast obviously.
13 A. I don't mind.
14 Q. How long have you known Zoran Zigic?
15 A. I've known Zoran Zigic since 1980, when we moved to his area. We
16 are very close neighbours.
17 Q. Do you know whether he's married?
18 A. That same year that we moved there, he married Milka Zigic. They
19 had two children, Natasa and Sanja. And I also know that he has a second
20 wife, Sanja, and a son called Nikola, and I know them all very well.
21 Q. Do you know his parents?
22 A. Savka and Nikola Zigic. I know them, and I adore them as elderly
24 Q. Ms. Sikic, how far is your house from the Zigic's house?
25 A. About 50 metres away. You just cross a yard and you're there.
1 Q. Would you be kind enough to tell us whether you had any contact
2 before, during, and after the war with Zoran Zigic's parents?
3 A. Yes. We were regularly in contact before the war, during the war,
4 and now, ever since we moved to the area.
5 Q. Do you know that Zoran Zigic was a member of the armed forces of
6 the army of Republika Srpska?
7 A. Yes, he was.
8 Q. After the war started in Prijedor and the former
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina, did you see Zoran Zigic?
10 A. Yes, I did.
11 Q. Was Zoran wearing a uniform in those days?
12 A. Yes. He wore a camouflage uniform.
13 Q. Did he have a cap on his head?
14 A. Yes, a red beret.
15 Q. Tell us, please, in that period, did you ever see Zoran Zigic with
16 his hair dyed or wearing an earring in one or both ears?
17 A. No, never.
18 Q. Tell me, please, did you ever see him wearing black gloves with
19 the fingers cut off?
20 A. I never noticed that.
21 Q. What colour was Zigic's hair?
22 A. Dark, very dark.
23 Q. Ms. Sikic, do you know when the Serbs took over power in
25 A. On the 30th of April, 1992. At the end of April.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 Q. Do you know how this takeover took place? Was it by peaceful
2 means or was there violence?
3 A. Mostly by peaceful means. Peaceful, peaceful. There was no
5 Q. Do you know when Prijedor was attacked by Muslim extremists?
6 A. A month later. On the 30th of May, 1992. A month after the
7 takeover of power.
8 Q. Could you be kind enough to tell us what part of Prijedor you live
9 or, rather, what part of Prijedor is your house and the Zigic house? What
10 is the area referred to?
11 A. It's called Cirkin Polje, in the direction of Mount Kozara, on the
12 slopes overlooking Prijedor.
13 Q. Can you tell us, please, what is the ethnic composition of the
14 population in that part of town?
15 A. Multiethnic. There were Croats and Muslims, but Serbs were the
17 Q. Ms. Sikic, do you know that Zoran Zigic was wounded during the
19 A. Yes, he was, on two occasions.
20 Q. Did you ever see Zoran wearing bandages on his left hand?
21 A. That was after the attack on Prijedor, when he was wounded in his
22 left hand. His finger was cut off, something like that, I think. And he
23 was wounded for a second time on the 19th of August, again in 1992.
24 Q. Could you tell me, please, for how long did you see Zoran walking
25 around with his fist bandaged? Can you remember roughly? Can you answer
1 that question for me?
2 A. I think for quite a long time. In June, July, maybe even into
4 Q. You said that after the beginning of the war in the area of
5 Prijedor municipality, you would see Zoran and have contact with him.
6 Could you answer the following question: During that time period, could
7 you feel any change of attitude by Zoran Zigic towards you and your
8 husband as his neighbours?
9 A. No. On the contrary, we could always look to him for protection
10 should we need it, to him and his parents.
11 Q. Did you know of anyone in your neighbourhood in that time frame
12 being mistreated by Zoran Zigic or abused or anything like that?
13 A. No.
14 Q. Ms. Sikic, had you heard of the investigation or collection
15 centres in Prijedor?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Which centres were they?
18 A. Keraterm, Trnopolje, and Omarska.
19 Q. Do you know when these investigation centres were set up?
20 A. I think after the attack on Prijedor, the days that followed, two
21 or three, five days after that. I don't know.
22 Q. Do you know who was taken into custody in those investigation
24 A. I think the people who did not respect the Serb authorities and
25 who participated in any way in the attack on Prijedor.
1 Q. Ms. Sikic, after Prijedor was attacked, that is, on the 30th of
2 May, 1992, do you know whether anyone from your neighbourhood ended up in
3 one of those investigation centres?
4 A. No, they didn't.
5 Q. Why? Could you tell us why?
6 A. I don't really know. Nobody hurt us or the other neighbours of
7 other ethnicities and probably they hadn't taken part in the attack or had
8 no ill intentions.
9 Q. Tell us, Ms. Sikic, do you have any knowledge about the fact that
10 in Keraterm a large number of people were killed in one night?
11 A. I heard about it.
12 Q. Could you tell us when that event occurred?
13 A. It occurred towards the end of July, I think. I think it was the
14 weekend, the night between the Friday and the Saturday, between the 24th
15 and the 25th of July.
16 Q. Could you tell us briefly where you were that day or, rather, that
18 A. I can because, even before, we had always socialised with Zoran
19 Zigic and his family, and that night we were also together in front of
20 their house. We came, my husband and I. He was at home. We arrived
21 around 2000 hours. There was some of Zoran's friends there already; his
22 wife; his children; his mother and father, Savka and Nikola. We sat
23 around for a while. We started a barbecue.
24 Q. Tell us, did you know all those people who came that evening?
25 A. Not all of his friends.
1 Q. Do you remember whether anyone was playing that night among the
2 people sitting in the Zigic garden?
3 A. Yes. Two young men were playing and Zoran as well, from time to
5 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, could I ask for a
6 private session for a couple of minutes because of two or three questions
7 that I have for this witness.
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. Let's go into private
9 session now.
10 [Private session]
3 [Open session]
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may proceed, Mr. Deretic.
5 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
6 Q. Could you please tell us about that evening. You said it was a
7 Friday, the 24th.
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. How did the people get together? Did they come individually or
10 all of them at once?
11 A. No, they didn't all come at the same time.
12 Q. When did the company get together? Can you remember?
13 A. About 2200 hours. It was already night-time when we had all
15 Q. You said that you arrived about 2000 hours with your husband. Was
16 Zoran Zigic already in the garden?
17 A. Yes. Yes, he was there.
18 Q. In what condition was he? Can you remember that particular
20 A. He was rather drunk already. He was gay. He was playing. He was
21 making a lot of noise.
22 Q. Can you remember when the company was fully formed in that
24 A. Well, I said about 2200 hours. Yes.
25 Q. After that, what happened? Did you continue all together in the
2 A. Yes. We sat around. We were drinking as usual, having a
3 barbecue, playing.
4 Q. Tell me, in the period from 2000 to 2200 hours, was Zoran in the
5 yard with you throughout?
6 A. He wasn't, because we weren't there all the time either. Our
7 house was close by. We would go home to bring something, to see how our
8 children were. So Zoran, too, would go to bring bread, drinks. So as the
9 company increased, we needed more and more stuff.
10 Q. After 2200 hours, what happened or, rather, was Zoran with you in
11 the garden throughout?
12 A. Yes. He was there until just before midnight.
13 Q. And what happened then?
14 A. Well, by then he was really drunk, and he went to sleep it off.
15 My husband took him to bed.
16 MR. SAXON: Objection, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Saxon.
18 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, it appears from where I'm sitting that
19 this witness has a piece of paper in front of her with some notes from
20 which she is reading as she's answering these questions, and at the very
21 least, the Prosecution would like to see the contents of these notes. We
22 would like to know where they arose from.
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Deretic.
24 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, as far as I know, the
25 witness probably made notes herself. I don't know what it is. Perhaps
1 the best thing would be to ask the witness. I can't see from here that
2 the witness has anything in front of her.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I explain? I just have some
4 dates written down here to remind me because it was a long time ago. So
5 one forgets.
6 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Could you be so kind enough to show my learned friend and Their
8 Honours, because I can't really see from here what you have in front of
9 you. The usher --
10 A. I can show it.
11 MR. SAXON: Perhaps the simplest thing, Your Honour, would be if
12 the counsel for Mr. Zigic would simply agree to make a copy of these notes
13 available to the Prosecution and the Trial Chamber at some point.
14 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] If I may be permitted,
15 Mr. President, I too would like to see what it is. I would like to see
16 the notes. Could I ask the usher to show the notes too.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. You're quite right,
18 Mr. Deretic.
19 MR. SAXON: Yes, Your Honour. These notes are in the B/C/S
20 language. It might be simplest if we could simply have a copy and try to
21 translate them at some later date. Thank you.
22 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, all I can say, these
23 are just a couple of dates. I know that Ms. Sikic was brought here about
24 10.00, and I know that other witnesses have also used notes. So in view
25 of the suggestion of the Prosecution, we will be guided by your ruling,
1 Your Honours.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Saxon, did you want to add
4 MR. SAXON: Just very briefly, Your Honour. It seems to us that
5 there appears to be a lot more information than just a couple of dates on
6 that piece of paper.
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] One moment, please.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Deretic, I think, to make
10 things quite clear, since you are ready to provide these notes, I think it
11 will be a good idea to have a copy and a translation so there should be no
12 doubts. I think these are clearly notes to assist the witness but, even
13 then, that should not be a problem. We could just tender a copy and have
14 it translated for the parties. Do you agree, Mr. Deretic?
15 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. Thank you,
16 Mr. President. I really don't see any problem. But I have to observe
17 that witnesses hitherto have been using similar notes, on the one hand; on
18 the other, there are really a large number of facts that occurred a long
19 time ago, and in that context I assume that the witness made these notes.
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes. I think we agree,
21 Mr. Deretic. That was the suggestion of the Chamber. The problem that
22 arises is, as you understand, the notes were written in a language which
23 the other party cannot understand. If it was the same language, it could
24 be inspected and that would be the end of it, but because it is in a
25 different language, it would not be necessary to have it translated if one
1 could understand immediately. So this is the only reason why we are
2 ruling that it should be tendered and translated.
3 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, that is fine.
4 Mr. Zigic's Defence is not making any objections in that regard.
5 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, then. Please
7 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] May I continue with the questions?
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, please do.
9 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
10 Q. Would you be kind enough to repeat your answer to my question:
11 Where and when and why did Zoran Zigic leave the yard?
12 A. Because he was quite drunk and he was drowsy, and so both he and
13 we wanted him to go and lie down, and just before midnight he went into
14 his house.
15 Q. Do you know where he went to sleep?
16 A. On a couch in the kitchen. He lay down there.
17 Q. How do you know that?
18 A. My husband took him there, and when he came back, he said that he
19 was lying down and that he had put his pistol under the pillow.
20 Q. Ms. Sikic, when you arrived at Zigic's yard, did you hear any
22 A. As there was a war on, one could hear shooting, but far and wide
24 Q. Tell me: After Zoran went to sleep, what happened then?
25 A. We stayed behind, sitting around in the same way as when Zoran was
1 with us.
2 Q. Tell me, please: After that time period, did you hear some
3 shooting which was coming from the direction of the town?
4 A. Yes. After midnight the shooting started, shooting of great
5 intensity, something we had not yet become accustomed to.
6 Q. Were there any comments made among your company regarding the
8 A. Well, I don't know. We were all surprised, and I can't remember
9 now whether anything in particular was said. I remember that there was
10 shooting, which we were not really happy about.
11 Q. Tell me, please: What was the intensity of the shooting? Did it
12 last? Was it continuous or individual shots, or how long did it take?
13 A. Well, the shooting went on for two or three hours, but again, in
14 bursts of fire, then a pause, then it would intensify. It went on for
15 quite some time.
16 Q. I've already asked you a similar question. Amongst you, did you
17 make any comments about the shooting, in the sense that it differed in
18 intensity from the shooting you had heard on earlier evenings?
19 A. Yes. We were all wondering what was going on. Nobody knew what
20 it was. I think somebody said, "There goes mad Ziga shooting again," but
21 I don't remember who said that.
22 Q. When did you go home? When did you leave the Zigic's yard?
23 A. After 3.00 a.m.
24 Q. So in the morning?
25 A. Well, yes.
1 Q. Did your husband leave the Zigic's yard with you?
2 A. Yes. We left together.
3 Q. The two of you, did you go straight home to your own house?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. In view of the intensity of the shooting, did you know where it
6 was going on or what it was all about?
7 A. No, we didn't. We just saw that it was coming from the direction
8 of the town, but we didn't know what was going on.
9 Q. The next day, in the morning, did you learn anything more about
10 the shooting?
11 A. Yes. As I was working, and my job was close to my house, and I
12 kept on working in spite of the war, my husband stayed behind and he went
13 to town, and he heard in town and I heard at work from customers that
14 quite a large number of people had been killed. There was this story
15 being spread in town.
16 Q. Where were these people killed?
17 A. In Keraterm, as that was the closest collection centre to where we
18 were living.
19 Q. The Zigic's yard, how far was it from the centre of town and from
20 Keraterm itself?
21 A. It is on an elevation, on some high ground in relation to town, in
22 the direction of Mount Kozara. It is a hill. Right across the way is the
23 airport. So we are on a higher ground than the town, and Keraterm is to
24 the left of the town.
25 Q. Could you tell us, as the crow flies, what would the distance be
1 from Keraterm to the Zigic yard?
2 A. Maybe 700, 800 metres. I don't believe it is a kilometre as the
3 crow flies; less than a kilometre.
4 Q. After this event that took place in Keraterm, do you know whether
5 the incident was discussed in town and what was being said about it, if
7 A. Well, I don't know, except that quite a number of people were
8 killed. I know nothing more than that.
9 Q. At the beginning of your testimony you said that Zigic was wounded
10 on two occasions.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Would you be kind enough to tell us when Zoran was wounded for the
13 second time and what you know about the incident.
14 A. He was wounded for the second time on the 19th of August, and I
15 know that extremely well because on that day my son, who was a miner, was
16 with him. And I mention that date as a day I celebrate. I call my
17 friends, my kums and neighbours to lunch. Because when Zoran was wounded
18 in the chin, the bullet passed through the body of his car. My son cried,
19 thinking that Zoran was killed. I was at work when Zoran took the car.
20 My son was in front of the garage, and he loved Zoran, adored him, and he
21 could always go to see him and he loved to accompany him, to go fishing,
22 and in fact Zoran taught him to eat fish and cheese when he was small. So
23 without a second thought, he got into the car and went with Zoran. And
24 relations with Zoran were such that he could always use our car, without
25 any questions being asked. However, it was wartime. How things happened
1 exactly, I don't know. Anyway, he was with him.
2 Q. Ms. Sikic, some witnesses here said that on that occasion your son
3 had been kidnapped by Zoran. What can you say to that?
4 A. No, and I can claim that with absolute certainty. Our son could
5 go with him whenever he wanted, wherever he wanted, and Zoran could use
6 the car as if it was his own, and he would always bring it back.
7 Q. Two more questions for you. Until this second wounding, did Zoran
8 Zigic have a scar on his chin?
9 A. No, he did not.
10 Q. And one final question for you. How would you, let us say, as the
11 next-door neighbour, describe Zoran Zigic's personality in a few
13 A. As far as I know Zoran - we always socialised, went to excursions
14 together, had barbecues together before the war - I could always look to
15 him for any protection if I needed it. When he drinks, he's a bit
16 difficult, but again, he hurts himself most.
17 Q. Talking about ethnic relations, did you ever sense any kind of
18 hostility? What kind of relationship did he have with your husband Ivica?
19 A. Excellent.
20 Q. What about other neighbours?
21 A. I think he never had any disputes with anyone in the
23 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. That ends my
24 examination-in-chief of this witness.
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 Mr. Deretic. I should like to confer with my colleagues concerning an
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Saxon, how much time do you
5 need for your cross-examination? The entire time used by the
6 examination-in-chief or less? Of course, you can't use more.
7 MR. SAXON: I understand that, Your Honour. I would ask for about
8 35 minutes, which would have us finished at about 5 minutes after 3.00, if
9 that's possible.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Okay. I think that the best way
11 to proceed is to prolong our session by half an hour. That is to say, let
12 us take a break now, reconvene to finish the witness today, which means
13 we'll be working a little late.
14 Madam Registrar, is there any apparent inconvenience in that?
15 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Apparently I do not think that
16 this causes any trouble if we do take a brief break now to allow the
17 interpreters to have a short rest.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you. So we're going to
19 have a 25-minute break, after which we shall reconvene for the
20 cross-examination and try to get through this witness by the end of the
22 Yes, Mr. Saxon.
23 MR. SAXON: Would it be possible, Your Honour, during this break,
24 if we could look at the notes that the witness has in front of her?
25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] I think so, yes.
1 Mr. Deretic?
2 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I have already stated
3 my views with respect to the question raised by the Prosecution.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well. Let us adjourn, and
5 then you can discuss the matter. A 25-minute break.
6 --- Recess taken at 2.34 p.m.
7 --- On resuming at 3.02 p.m.
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be seated.
9 Mr. Saxon, you have the floor for the cross-examination. Your
11 MR. SAXON: Thank you, Your Honour. The Prosecution has managed
12 to produce a very rough translation of the notes that the witness had in
13 front of her during the direct examination, and we have made copies of
14 this very rough translation. If the Trial Chamber would like, we could
15 provide copies of this rough English translation to the Trial Chamber,
16 subject to, of course, a final translation being done to these notes.
17 It's up to the Trial Chamber if they would like to see this or not.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] The Judges accept.
20 Cross-examined by Mr. Saxon:
21 Q. Ms. Sikic --
22 THE INTERPRETER: I said Sokic. I mean Sikic. I'm sorry.
23 MR. SAXON:
24 Q. When did you write these notes?
25 A. Here in the hotel.
1 Q. And approximately when was that?
2 A. Yesterday at about noon, after lunch.
3 Q. Were you alone when you wrote these notes or were you with someone
4 at that time?
5 A. I was in the room. I was sitting at the table. My husband was
6 lying down on the bed.
7 Q. Did anyone tell you what to put in these notes at any time?
8 A. No. I knew that I had to know when the attack on Prijedor took
9 place, when the takeover of power took place, and a long time has passed
10 since then. So instead of doing guesswork, I jotted this down.
11 Q. Ms. Sikic, did Zoran Zigic have a nickname?
12 A. No, except for Ziga, Zoran Zigic, known as Ziga.
13 Q. Ziga. So to understand your testimony, on the 24th to 25th of
14 July, that night or early morning when a lot of shooting was heard and
15 neighbours said, "There goes mad Ziga shooting again," were they referring
16 to Zoran Zigic?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Did Zoran Zigic have a reputation for shooting his gun a lot?
19 A. Well, I don't know that.
20 Q. To what do you ascribe then the comments of those neighbours,
21 "There's goes mad Ziga shooting again"?
22 A. Well, that's what they said. Whatever happened, when he had been
23 drinking, he would start shooting and shouting and making a general
25 Q. You mentioned during your direct testimony that when Mr. Zigic
1 drank, he became a bit difficult. Would you describe Mr. Zigic, in 1992,
2 as an alcoholic?
3 A. Well, he wasn't always drunk, but he liked drinking, and it was
4 wartime, after all, and you behaved the way you did with anything that was
5 at hand.
6 Q. During June, July, August of 1992, would you often see Mr. Zigic
7 armed with a firearm?
8 A. He would usually carry a pistol.
9 Q. In fact, as you mentioned earlier, he was trusted to go to sleep
10 with that pistol under his pillow; is that right?
11 A. That's what happened when he lay down, but I don't know if he
12 usually went to bed with his pistol under his pillow.
13 Q. You said that you could look to Mr. Zigic for protection. Do you
14 mean armed protection, that is, protection with a firearm, if necessary?
15 A. No. Moral support, material, and if I needed protection with
16 weapons, I'm sure he would stand in front of us and protect us too.
17 Q. When Mr. Zigic was drunk, would you have trusted him for
18 protection in 1992?
19 A. He never demonstrated any adverse behaviour towards us, either
20 when he was drunk or when he was sober.
21 Q. The barbecue that you talked about, or the party that occurred at
22 the end of July, what was the occasion for that party?
23 A. Well, it was never a problem for us to have a party, to sit down,
24 have something to eat, drink a little.
25 Q. So no special occasion; just friends and neighbours wanted to have
1 a party?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. You mentioned that Mr. Zigic was in the garden, playing, during
4 that party. What was he playing?
5 A. People were playing the guitar, and as I remember, he liked
6 playing the guitar before that, so that was no problem. He took the
7 guitar and had a go on it, played something on the guitar.
8 Q. So the bandage on his injured finger did not prevent him from
9 playing the guitar at that party?
10 A. Well, he made the best of the situation.
11 Q. Did Zoran Zigic cook the food at that party?
12 A. We all lent a helping hand. We would all take turns barbecuing.
13 Nobody did anything special or just somebody doing something that you
14 could notice.
15 Q. Did Mr. Zigic take his turn helping with the barbecue?
16 A. He was rather tipsy at the time, so ...
17 Q. Is that a no, then, or is that a yes? I don't ...
18 A. I didn't notice.
19 Q. About how many people came to that party?
20 A. About ten.
21 Q. Do you recall the names, please, people who were there?
22 A. Myself; my husband, Ivica; his wife, Milka; two young men who
23 played. I don't know, but I think they were both Muslims. I don't know
24 their names. Zoran's daughters, Natasa and Sanja. Nikola would walk
25 around. There was Savka.
1 Q. How about Zoran Zigic's kum, Hasan Karabasic? Was he at that
3 A. I don't know. I said there were two Muslims, but I don't know
4 their names. Perhaps I heard their names at the time, but I've forgotten.
5 Q. Did you speak to Mr. Zigic at that party?
6 A. Not especially. We were all sitting around and chatting,
7 laughing, that kind of thing.
8 Q. Did you talk about the Keraterm camp while you were all sitting
10 A. No, we didn't. That was never a topic.
11 Q. Did you talk about the Omarska camp while you were sitting there
13 A. Even less so.
14 Q. How about the Trnopolje camp? Did people talk about the reception
15 centre at Trnopolje?
16 A. No.
17 Q. When Mr. Zigic went to sleep around midnight, as you've testified,
18 did you personally see Mr. Zigic asleep in his bed?
19 A. Before midnight I didn't see him sleeping.
20 Q. So you never -- you did not see Mr. Zigic sleeping in his bed once
21 he left the party?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Yes, you saw him sleeping in his bed; or no, you did not see him?
24 A. I didn't see him actually sleeping. I saw him go into the house.
25 Q. Do you know from your personal knowledge if Mr. Zigic slept
1 through the night?
2 A. I think he did.
3 Q. So you think he did. Do you have personal knowledge that he did?
4 A. We were there until between 3.00 and 4.00 a.m. Up until that
5 time, he didn't come out of the house, he didn't leave the house, nor
6 could he have left it, because we would have seen him, because it was just
7 by the front door of his house.
8 Q. Did you have anything to drink that night?
9 A. Fruit juice.
10 Q. Did any fights break out at that party, any arguments or
12 A. No.
13 Q. You mentioned that Mr. Zigic would have been seen if he had left
14 the house. Was there only one entrance to that house or was there more
15 than one entrance?
16 A. Just one entrance.
17 Q. Were there windows to the house?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Were there windows in the front of the house and in the back of
20 the house?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Were there windows on the side of the house?
23 A. Yes, on all three sides.
24 Q. You testified that the home of Mr. Zigic and his parents was about
25 700 to 800 metres from the Keraterm camp. How long would it take to drive
1 from that house to the Keraterm camp in a car?
2 A. About ten minutes.
3 Q. How long would it take to walk from that house to the Keraterm
5 A. Half an hour. About half an hour, perhaps less.
6 MR. SAXON: With the Court's indulgence, please.
7 [Prosecution counsel confer]
8 MR. SAXON:
9 Q. You mentioned that your son was 15 in 1992; is that correct?
10 A. Fourteen, fifteen. I'm not quite sure. He was born in 1978, at
11 any rate.
12 Q. According to your testimony, your son was with Mr. Zigic in an
13 automobile on the 19th of August when Mr. Zigic was shot in the chin. Did
14 I understand you correctly?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Now, you knew that Mr. Zigic had a tendency to drink in 1992; is
17 that right?
18 A. Yes, more or less.
19 Q. And it was wartime in Prijedor, right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Mr. Zigic would often carry a pistol; is that right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Why did you allow your son to spend time alone with a man, an
24 armed man, who drinks a lot and who becomes difficult when he drinks,
25 during wartime, and your son was only 14 or 15?
1 A. I was at work when Zoran came, took the car. My son was in front
2 of the garage, making a rabbit hut or something like that, and he probably
3 said, "Do you want to come with me?" And whenever it was Zoran, he would
4 always agree to go with him. And Zoran never made any problems. I never
5 had to think about his being drunk or carrying a pistol.
6 On that particular occasion, I wasn't there. I was on the work.
7 Then after work, I went to a funeral. A neighbour's father had died.
8 When I returned home at about 4.00 or 5.00 in the afternoon, my son came
9 back home at 6.00 p.m. So I didn't give it any thought about how Zoran
10 was. I knew that he would never do anything to harm my son. He just went
11 off with him and I knew that he would return.
12 Q. You mentioned that a neighbour's father had died and so you went
13 to a funeral.
14 A. Yes, that's right.
15 Q. When a neighbour had died or someone close to you had passed away
16 in Prijedor, would the funeral be a serious affair or would it be a
18 A. A serious affair, and we had to pay our respects to our
19 neighbours. Opposite Zoran's house is where the father of the neighbour
20 had died, and out of respect for our neighbours, we would attend the
22 MR. SAXON: With the Court's indulgence, Your Honour.
23 [Prosecution counsel confer]
24 MR. SAXON: At this time, I have no further questions, Your
25 Honour. Thank you.
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Saxon.
2 Mr. Deretic, any additional questions? If you do, please
4 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] If I may, Mr. President, I just have
5 two or three questions for the witness.
6 Re-examined by Mr. Deretic:
7 Q. Ms. Sikic, when Zoran went into the house to sleep, what condition
8 was he in? The drunkenness, how drunk was he? Was he able to go on his
9 own or did anybody need to assist him? Did someone take him into the
11 A. He was completely drunk, and my husband helped him, as he would
12 always do.
13 Q. In the state he was in, was he capable of jumping out of a window,
14 for example?
15 A. Of course not. There was no question of that.
16 Q. Was Zoran Zigic able to leave the house through the door to pass
17 by you without you noticing him?
18 A. No, he couldn't because it's a small village cottage and a small
19 yard. It's not a big place. There's just this one door, and he couldn't
20 possibly leave without us noticing.
21 Q. You said that that particular evening he played the guitar too.
22 A. Yes. He always liked to play.
23 Q. Did he actually play the guitar? Could he play the guitar? Could
24 you describe that to us, this playing of his?
25 A. I said that he took up the guitar to play, and I apologise for the
1 expression, but he wanted to have some fun.
2 Q. Until you returned home - you said you returned home at about
3 3.00 a.m. - did he leave the house at all?
4 A. No, he didn't.
5 Q. Did your husband, Ivica, in that time interval, that is to say, up
6 until he went into the house and your departure, did he enter the house?
7 A. I don't know.
8 Q. Do you happen to know whether Zoran's parents, either one of
9 Zoran's parents went into the house, or perhaps his wife?
10 A. Well, yes. They would go in and out all the time.
11 Q. In that time frame, did anybody mention anything with respect to
12 Zoran and his sleeping?
13 A. No.
14 MR. DERETIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. I have no
15 further questions.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Deretic.
17 Judge Fouad Riad, do you have any questions?
18 JUDGE RIAD: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President.
19 Questioned by the Court:
20 JUDGE RIAD: Good afternoon, Ms. Sikic.
21 A. Good afternoon.
22 JUDGE RIAD: I have just one inquiry about the paper which was
23 submitted to us. Apparently it has been translated, but it looks like
24 answers to question, as you say, "I am not aware"; "I know."
25 Were you anticipating certain questions and putting the answers
1 for yourself or what?
2 A. Well, if I have come here, you see, I had to know when the war
3 began, when something happened, when Zoran was wounded, when he was with
4 my son, and all this was a long time ago for me to remember without notes
5 to remind me.
6 JUDGE RIAD: So you made the scenario for yourself and you were
7 answering the questions?
8 A. No. These are just notes.
9 JUDGE RIAD: You say, "I'm not aware." Aware of what? This is an
11 A. If I don't know the answer to a question, then it's better for me
12 not to even try to answer it if I don't know the answer. So I thought I'd
13 say, "I don't know."
14 JUDGE RIAD: That's a good preparation. Thank you.
15 A. Thank you.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Judge Fouad
18 Madam Judge Wald.
19 JUDGE WALD: Ms. Sikic, you mentioned that Mr. Zigic had kind of
20 general approval to drive your car because you really trusted him. Did he
21 have a car of his own at that time? At that time, did he have a car of
22 his own? No. Did he have a motorcycle?
23 A. I think he didn't. I think that he did not.
24 JUDGE WALD: Did he have a motorcycle of his own at that time that
25 you know about?
1 A. A motorcycle? I don't know. I remember seeing a small
2 motorcycle, but I don't remember exactly in what time period, whether it
3 was then or a bit later. I can't tell you exactly.
4 JUDGE WALD: Okay. That night that we talked about that you were
5 all in the garden party, just for my enlightenment, what was the last
6 time, if you can place some time on it, that you actually saw Mr. Zigic,
7 that you yourself actually saw him? Just approximately what time?
8 A. I personally saw him just before midnight, between half past 11.00
9 and 12.00, when he went off to sleep.
10 JUDGE WALD: Okay. And my last question is: You said that later
11 on -- I think you said that later on, when the shooting intensified - he
12 had already gone into the house but some of you stayed out until around
13 3.00, when you went home - that people said, "Oh, it must be mad Ziga
14 shooting up again." Now, why would people say that it must be mad Ziga
15 shooting up again if all those people in the yard, like you, had seen him
16 go in in a very drunken state a couple of hours earlier, and so far as
17 they knew, he was still in bed, still in the kitchen, asleep on the
18 couch? Why would they say, "It must be mad Ziga shooting up again," do
19 you think?
20 A. They were really referring to what other people would say.
21 JUDGE WALD: But your interpretation is that they didn't think
22 that themselves; they just thought other people who weren't there might
23 think that? Is that what your answer says?
24 A. Yes. Yes.
25 JUDGE WALD: Okay. Thank you.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French
13 and English transcripts.
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Judge
3 Ms. Sikic, I too have some questions.
4 Yes, Mr. Stojanovic.
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I may, the
6 question of this note was raised by Judge Riad. We should like to reserve
7 the right to some additional questions. We have the translation but not
8 the original, so we cannot confirm - we may need not more than a minute or
9 two - we cannot confirm whether this really corresponds to what is written
10 in the B/C/S language. We really don't have the original and we don't
11 know what's written in the original notes, and the question has been
12 raised now by His Honour Judge Riad. We have the translation but not the
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] And who has the original,
15 Mr. Stojanovic? I thought it was you. Don't you have the original? The
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think only the Prosecution has
18 the original now. Oh, no, no. Oh, it's been returned to the witness. I
19 see. May I get it? May I look at it?
20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Perhaps you could ask the
21 witness for the original and check whether the translation is a good one
22 or not.
23 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think the Prosecution had it
24 during the break, so we couldn't do it then. Thank you.
25 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, just as a point of clarification, we took
1 the original documents for about three minutes to make copies and then we
2 handed it back either to the usher or to the witness -- to the clerk of
3 the Court, to Madam Registrar.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Have you finished?
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours. We really
6 think there are some minor nuances. One has to do with the question of
7 Judge Riad. Where it says, "I am not aware," the translation in B/C/S is,
8 "I don't know." But this is a minor difference. I don't think it is
9 important. So nothing substantial.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Usher, could you return the
11 original to the witness, please.
12 So Madam Sikic, the first two notes on your piece of paper should
13 be read as "camouflage uniform" and "red beret"; is that correct?
14 A. Yes.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Will you take the
16 context -- what prompted you to take those notes? Why did you write down
17 "camouflage uniform" and "red beret"? What was the context?
18 A. I always wanted to say "multicoloured uniform," and then I thought
19 I'd be nervous and I wouldn't remember using the proper term, being
20 "camouflage uniform." And "red beret," I just don't know, because he
21 wore a red beret and everyone didn't wear a red beret.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, but in time and place,
23 where were you going to place this "camouflage uniform" and "red beret"?
24 Do you understand? In space and time, linked to what?
25 A. Well, that was the kind of uniform he wore from the beginning of
1 the war, and I said a red beret because everybody wasn't wearing them. In
2 fact, few people were wearing red berets.
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, but when you said that he
4 wore this uniform from the beginning of the war, what date would you set
5 as marking the beginning of the war?
6 A. Power was taken over on the 30th of April, and then a period of
7 one month we were in an atmosphere of expectation and fear, and then when
8 the attack occurred, we knew the war had begun. And then it was all over,
9 as far as I am concerned, regarding dates.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Another question. You have
11 another note. Let me read it in English, because I have it in English.
12 [In English] "People who participated in the attack of Prijedor and did
13 not respect the Serbian." [Interpretation] Look at the paper now,
14 please. What was the context for this particular note?
15 A. So that I would be able to say who were the people who were taken
16 to camps; those who did not respect the authorities, and people who were
17 attacking Prijedor.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Did you know the ethnicity of
19 those people, for instance?
20 A. Croats and Muslims. If respect was required of the Serb
21 authorities, then obviously the other party were Croats and Muslims.
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Another note that you took: "It
23 lasted two or three hours." What was the context? What prompted you to
24 take down that note, to say "two or three hours?" What?
25 A. The shooting started after midnight and it went on. Then there
1 was a break and it started again; I don't know how much later. Then it
2 intensified again. And it went on like that for two or three hours. I
3 don't know exactly for how long. I couldn't be that precise, really.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well, Madam Sikic. We have
5 no further questions for you. And thank you very much for having come,
6 and we wish you a safe journey home and success in your work. I will ask
7 the usher to accompany you out.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I thank you. You have been very
9 kind, and I shall be glad if my participation proves useful. Thank you.
10 [The witness withdrew]
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Saxon.
12 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, at this time the Prosecution would ask
13 that a copy of the notes that this witness referred to during her direct
14 testimony be marked as Exhibit 3/242, along with a copy of the draft
15 translation. And when we have a final translation of these notes, we will
16 offer them into admission, Your Honour, as relevant to the credibility of
17 this witness.
18 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Mr. Stojanovic, what is your
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] We object, Your Honour. We don't
21 think that the suggestion is fair in relation to our code of conduct so
22 far. Endless witnesses have had their own notes and one of the other
23 Defence counsels asked for insight into those notes. They did, and there
24 was no problem about it. These were events that we know took place. So I
25 think this is material that should not be part of the record or part of
1 the evidence. Otherwise, we'll find ourselves in an absurd situation,
2 requesting everybody's notes about all kinds of things to be tendered into
4 We don't consider this to be a document at all. It is just
5 something jotted down on a piece of paper, just like my notes are here.
6 So we don't think that this can come under what is envisaged by the Rules
7 as documents that could be part of the evidence.
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Any response, Mr. Saxon?
9 MR. SAXON: Yes, I do. With all due respect to Mr. Stojanovic,
10 these notes are not just something jotted down on a piece of paper. The
11 Prosecution has compared these notes to the LiveNote transcript, and what
12 we see, beginning on page 64 of the LiveNote transcript, continuing
13 through page 76 of the LiveNote transcript, is that the notes that the
14 witness had in front of her correspond exactly to her testimony, to the
15 order of her -- of the answers that she gave, and so we feel that these
16 notes are relevant then to the credibility of this witness, and we would
17 like to reserve the opportunity to offer them into evidence at a later
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please. We have
20 to put an end to this at some point, Mr. Stojanovic.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] The Chamber reserves its ruling
23 for the time when we have the final translation.
24 So the document has been marked for identification and once we
25 have the official translation, the Chamber will make a ruling. We also
1 need a little time to think about it.
2 So I think that concludes our work for today. We will resume
3 tomorrow, but it should be said that Judge Fouad Riad will not be with us
4 tomorrow for the first part of the morning, as he has other appointments
5 linked to his health. So we'll be working from 9.20 until 11.00 with two
6 Judges and after that in the presence of Judge Fouad Riad as well.
7 So that's all for today. We'll meet again tomorrow.
8 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 3.45 p.m.,
9 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 27th day
10 of March, 2001, at 9.20 a.m.