Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 6006

1 Thursday, 19 May 2005

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 2.17 p.m.

5 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Limaj, if I could remind you of the affirmation

6 that you made at the beginning of your evidence which still applies.

7 Mr. Mansfield.


9 [Witness answered through interpreter]

10 Examined by Mr. Mansfield: [Continued]

11 THE WITNESS: Just one problem from translator.

12 MR. MANSFIELD: Is that all right?

13 Your Honour, good afternoon. We reached a stage last night where

14 we had been dealing with Rahovec and also with Lapusnik towards the end of

15 July 1998.

16 Q. And you indicated that after the fall of Lapusnik large numbers of

17 civilians fled the towns and the villages up into the mountains, and you

18 yourself were warning them and helping them to do that. Now, I just want

19 to deal with that episode, the episode of civilians in the mountains.

20 Approximately how many thousand civilians ended up in the gorges

21 and the mountains after the fall of Lapusnik?

22 A. When we talk about the fall of the Lapusnik gorge, you have to

23 bear in mind that it led also to Malisheve falling, too; they are

24 connected. Around the mountains of Berisa at that time, there were about

25 50.000 people sheltered there, but the number kept increasing. In January

Page 6007

1 to April 1999, that gorge, or those mountains, had about 85.000

2 inhabitants. The figures are, however, not official, but as the observers

3 themselves noted and villagers who tried to keep numbers, they say that at

4 the end there were about 85.000 civilians there.

5 Q. Now, in what way did you yourself assist these civilians in the

6 gorges and in the mountains?

7 A. This event is linked to what I said yesterday. Seeing what was

8 happening, I had started to organise in a way assistance from earlier on.

9 I had started to collect foodstuff to keep them in time of danger, and

10 what we had in a way foreseen came true. People left; they fled their

11 homes without taking anything with them. They had --

12 THE INTERPRETER: He wants me to repeat that they had fled their

13 homes without taking anything with them.

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So in order for them to escape

15 Serbian shelling -- and we had to provide also for food for them, and we

16 started to find places for them to take shelter, because on both sides of

17 the Berisa Mountains there are numerous valleys where people could take

18 refuge to escape shelling by the Serbian forces. And in these valleys and

19 gorges, we started to set up some tents to distribute foodstuffs, food

20 supplies, to the people.

21 It is important to point out that we began to deploy soldiers at

22 all these gorges and valleys in order for them to protect the population,

23 in case the Serbian infantry attempted to penetrate the valleys and gorges

24 because they couldn't do that by means of vehicles. But if they sent

25 infantry troops, then we had to deploy our own soldiers to protect the

Page 6008

1 population. These were more or less the ways we used to try and help and

2 protect the population, and we continued to do that until the end of the

3 war.

4 Because of the stress, the concerns we had, because of the daily

5 shelling, Your Honours, we started to feel under great pressure. You

6 might imagine what life we could leave under these circumstances. In

7 September I took the initiative to open a school for the kids who were

8 there. There were kids starting from the age of 5, 6, 7, and 8, and they

9 were under stress, they were afraid. And I wanted to give hope no the

10 children and to their parents, and to divert their attention from the

11 difficult life they were living in. So we talked with some teachers who

12 happened to be there with their own families, and we took the initiative

13 of opening up an improvised school for children to learn something there.

14 And in those tents which various humanitarian organisations had provided

15 to us, we started to, as I said, open up some school centres, if you

16 like. You might imagine what kind of teaching that was, but it was an

17 attempt on our part to try to divert the attention from daily stress and

18 problems.

19 One of those schools was visited by international reporters and

20 journalists who filmed it and they made it public all over the world. We

21 set up a kind of market-place of supplies for the population, so that

22 those who were unable to have food supplies but had the money, they could

23 buy some food provisions in this market because there were some people who

24 managed to bring in food from various surrounding towns to supply this

25 market-place. In this way people not only could buy food provisions but

Page 6009

1 could try to forget deprivations and the difficulties they were faced

2 with, not for a month or two, but for many months, even though the number

3 of the population changed; sometimes it was greater, sometimes it was

4 smaller. At a point in time, we had 15.000 then 30, 40.000 then the

5 number reached 80.000 or 85.000.

6 So in that small market-place people could buy food provisions,

7 who could afford to do that. Those who couldn't, we started to supply

8 them with those food reserves that I told you I had started to collect

9 from earlier on. I wanted to tell you, Your Honours, there were 16

10 soldiers, 16 soldiers who were killed while attempting to go in -- back

11 into the village and take from those villages some food supplies, some

12 medicaments, clothes, and other necessary goods that they could find

13 there. We tried to organise these operations at night. So 16 soldiers

14 from my own unit got killed after September -- from September to May only

15 while trying to get food supplies.

16 Just to give you an example, it was by the -- at the end of August

17 when the head of a family, who was acting as a leader of a neighbourhood,

18 he had left his home, and those few food provisions he got with him, he

19 had spent in the course of the last weeks, and now his children had

20 nothing to live by. They started to cry, they wanted

21 food, they wanted something to eat. And so that man was very desperate.

22 This man is a businessman who before the war had a very huge capital, and

23 even during the war he sold gas, construction materials, and food

24 supplies. But at the time of the war, after the entry of the Serbian

25 troops, he left everything behind and had just fled with his family. He

Page 6010

1 came to me, we met by accident, and he asked me for help. Then I went to

2 two soldiers of mine, talked with them, there was a small makeshift

3 bakery, and I asked one of them, Do we have anymore flour? He said, Yes,

4 we have flour to prepare to bake 20 loaves of bread. But these men that

5 came to me, he was responsible for 200 people of his neighbourhood, and so

6 we tried to supply all of them. We went to get corn somewhere else. We

7 ground the corn and use some old mills which were out of use until then,

8 and then they started to grind the corn and use for the civilian

9 population. These were some of the things that we tried to do, to cope

10 with the situation.

11 This went on. Sometimes the situation got more tense, sometimes

12 more -- less so. There were periods when humanitarian organisations

13 helped us, but there also periods when we were left on our own.

14 Q. Now, I just want to take one more dimension of the assistance that

15 you were rendering, and that is you have mentioned in passing the

16 provision of medicaments. Were there medical centres set up alongside

17 schools?

18 A. Yes. I couldn't call them medical centres, but there were -- they

19 were improvised, makeshift, centres. In the tents there were some doctors

20 who could provide medical service to the children and the population.

21 There were thousands of children there. These doctors were general

22 practitioners. One of them was a surgeon, and that surgeon performed

23 surgery in the open, in the absence of the basic materials, supplies. We

24 lacked all sorts of medicaments. After the Serb offensive, it was

25 impossible to get medicaments from the cities, as we did before the Serbs

Page 6011

1 had gotten control of these towns.

2 The doctor -- and we have film of this. The doctor had to give

3 some serums to the injured, and he to put that serum -- to hang it from an

4 oak tree. There was a surgeon, as I said, there were some nurses, men and

5 women who happened to be there.

6 Q. Do you just -- a matter of detail. Do you remember the names of

7 any of the doctors?

8 A. Yes, I do. When we were there Agim Hazrolli often came to help.

9 I'm talking the period after August, in September, October. Then there

10 was Fadil Beka, but they moved to various places because they were wanted

11 elsewhere. But permanently there was a paediatrician. His name was Besim

12 Zogaj and another one Fitim Selimi in September, who came to Klecka from

13 other part there. There was another doctor called Jakup, who was a

14 dentist, I think, but he offered his services to the population. There

15 were some seven, eight nurses. I remember one by the name of Drita who

16 was there all the time, and she was from that village. And there was some

17 other nurses whose names I can't recall at the moment.

18 Q. Now, I want to -- you have been describing the civilian population

19 over the August, September, October period right the way through to the

20 end of the war. I want to turn now to deal with your military activities

21 in this same period. But first this question: By the end of July, what

22 weaponry did you have available to you personally to use? Do you remember

23 now? Can you specify what you had?

24 A. Personally, I had an automatic rifle, a Kalashnikov.

25 Q. And what about the unit that you were attached to in Klecka up

Page 6012

1 until the fall of Lapusnik and Malisheve?

2 A. My unit had a weapon, each of -- a personal weapon. We had a

3 mortar, 150 millimetre. In July we received another mortar, 250

4 millimetre, I think it was the 10th or 12th of July, and we received it

5 from Albania with a load of shipment -- with a shipment of arms. We had

6 normally, hand-grenade, munitions. In July I think we also had some mines

7 which Serbian troops had planted along the border, and the soldiers pulled

8 them out and brought to us but we didn't know how to use them. Some might

9 have a mortar, a machine-gun, and a sniper at this time in July.

10 Q. Now, we know in August, passing on to this period you have been

11 dealing with, the 121 Brigade as an area was established. Is there a date

12 in your memory for the beginning of this move to establish a brigade, 121

13 Brigade?

14 A. I think it was on the 6th of August, 1998, when Rexhep Selimi and

15 Byslym Zyropi came to Klecke to see how things were after the offensive,

16 which was still going on in various areas. They came with a concrete

17 proposal, something which was approved by the General Staff, that is to

18 form -- to start the forming of brigades in these area. The establishment

19 of the Pastrik zone was rather delayed as a result of the offensive. So

20 at this meeting there were some commanders of other units like Isak,

21 Ismet, and Idriz, the commander of another unit whose last name I can't

22 recall at this moment. He's from Obrinje and Krekov village. There was

23 someone called Faik, a commander of another unit. And then there was Luan

24 and another commander from Blace. So there were -- present at this

25 meeting were commanders of various units. Byslym and Rexhep stayed that

Page 6013

1 night in Klecke. They came, as I said, with a concrete proposal to form a

2 brigade of all these units, and that brigade would have the name of

3 Brigade 121, as a General Staff had decided. This brigade would be formed

4 of all of the units located on both sides of the Berisa Mountains, meaning

5 the units from Terpeze up to Guzace [phoen] or Blace. And on the other

6 hand, the units that were situated from Lapusnik to Carraleve. Because by

7 the time the Serbian forces had occupied all of other territories, with

8 the exception of the valley where we were located. So the inhabitants had

9 taken to the mountains of Klecka and Berisa after having abandoned their

10 homes.

11 So in the light of the reality and the situation on the ground,

12 they said that we have to change the borders of the areas, the zones. So

13 this region should have a unified unit in order for to us protect the

14 Berisa Mountains and to prevent the Serbian troops from penetrating. So

15 for that purpose, it was necessary to have a unified command as a logical

16 development that might ensure us the necessary strength to protect the

17 said territory.

18 On the proposal of Rexhep and Byslym, I was appointed commander of

19 Brigade 121. This decision was approved by all of the commanders of the

20 units present there, and from this moment we started work to set up the

21 structure of Brigade 121 with the borders that I mentioned yesterday. And

22 from this moment on, parts of the territory that used to belong to Drenice

23 Operational Zone now were part of Pastrik Operational Zone, which now had

24 broader borders up to -- if you want me, I might describe it, up to

25 Magure, because the territory covered by that brigade goes -- extends to

Page 6014

1 that area.

2 This brigade is formed as a result of three operational zones.

3 Forming this brigade, including all these units, this brigade is part of

4 Pastrik Operational Zone, and the later now becomes bigger and the borders

5 are changed. It took some territory that used to belong to Drenice and

6 Nerodime, and another part that was supposed to be part of Pastrik zone.

7 This was for the first time a delineation of the borders and the

8 establishment of a unified military unit, and for the first time I was the

9 first commander of that brigade comprising all that territory that I

10 mentioned.

11 Q. Now, the proposal was the 6th of August. Can you give the

12 Tribunal some idea how long it took to implement the proposal and make it

13 an effective brigade area?

14 A. We encountered constant problems. We took immediate measures to

15 set up the structure. First I started with the structure of the command,

16 which was a normal development. On the next day, after consulting the

17 commanders of the units, I proposed to the General Staff in consultation

18 with Rexhep and Byslym that I have Kumanova, Ismet Jashari as well as my

19 deputies, and Isak Musliu as the other, as assistant commander; and this

20 is how we started our organisation. But our organisation was interrupted

21 after 20 days as -- because of the other offensive mounted by the Serbian

22 forces which came from the other part of the Berisa Mountains, from Duhle

23 to Luzhnice. And on the 24th and 25th of August, the Serbian forces

24 managed to penetrate into Klecke, something that interrupted our activity

25 to expand and consolidate the Brigade 121.

Page 6015

1 After Klecke fell on 25th of August, we were left with a very

2 narrow space, area. I was 700 metres away at the time from the Serb

3 forces where they were deployed and we didn't know where to stay. For

4 two, three weeks we stayed -- slept out in the open. That was a powerful

5 blow given to us. On the 24th, 25th of August, Kumanova was killed

6 together with some other soldiers. There again some confusion was

7 created. We were, as I said, in the process of consolidation and

8 formation, so being under constant attacks we were unable to continue our

9 efforts in this regard.

10 After the penetration of the Serbian forces in Klecka on the 25th

11 of August, people started to spread out. Some started to hide the weapons

12 and to withdraw from that place, and there was a propaganda campaign

13 saying that the KLA has withdrawn and so on. There were some soldiers,

14 12, actually, around me, and those 12 soldiers, one of them actually

15 invited me to leave that place and to go on -- to another part of Drenica

16 which were -- where the situation was calmer. He wanted me to be -- to

17 stay there until the attack was over. I refused to leave the place, that

18 place, telling him that I might leave that place only if I died. I

19 couldn't do that because there were thousands of civilians there. I

20 couldn't leave, myself, and abandon the population at the mercy of the

21 Serbian forces. Among those civilians, Your Honours, was also my family.

22 I could have withdrawn my family earlier from that area and from the war,

23 but I never did that, because I consider it an amoral act to take care

24 only of my family and leave the other citizens in the lurch. So during

25 all that time, my family was among the surrounded civilian population, and

Page 6016

1 together with those 12 soldiers, we started our work to re-establish

2 Brigade 121. We wanted to show with our presence that we were there, that

3 we were still existent. Some people said that I had left to Canada

4 because they hadn't seen me for two or three days. It was a terrible

5 propaganda we were subjected to. People were starting to panic, but we

6 started our efforts to reorganise ourselves, and the bulk of the soldiers

7 were waiting, what would happen. They had gone to their families to

8 protect their families, but when they saw that I was there, when they saw

9 that -- what I was about to do, when I told them that we had to reorganise

10 ourselves again, as we did after the fall of Lapusnik gorge, they

11 expressed their readiness to help and we started work to re-establish the

12 brigade. This work continued up to the end of the war, because it was an

13 ongoing process.

14 Q. Is it possible for you to indicate when you think the brigade was

15 functioning satisfactorily? Is there a point in this period where when

16 you could say it had been re-established and was functioning?

17 A. I think, yes; a satisfactory function, no. But according to the

18 standards at that time, such a function was achieved after the signing of

19 the Milosevic-Holbrook agreement. Because at that time this agreement

20 created some space for us. Serbian forces withdrew from some points they

21 had under their control until that time, for example, from Klecka, because

22 as of 25th of August Serb forces were stationed in Klecka until the

23 Milosevic-Holbrook agreement. When the Serb forces withdrew from this

24 position with the signing of the agreement, our situation consolidated.

25 And as of November, I can say that the brigade functioned satisfactorily

Page 6017

1 and functioned well in that part, that is to say, in the Pastrik

2 Operational Zone. Because the blows we had suffered in August, we

3 overcame these blows, and it was easier now -- for us now to be organised,

4 unlike some other units when they had to be organised from scratch. This

5 is did not happen with us. I didn't have at any time problems with

6 soldiers to organise them; I always had problems with the territory.

7 Q. We know that in November you were appointed to the General Staff,

8 and the question is: To what extent did you continue with your

9 involvement with Brigade 121 after that appointment?

10 A. To tell you the truth, the developments in August had created an

11 emotional link between us. We didn't abandon each other. We stood by

12 each other. We had protected the civilian population, and this was the

13 outcome of a joint effort and we were proud of it. And this connection

14 continued. The appointment from General Staff -- or better to say I was

15 informed about this on the 28th of November, on the day of the flag, on a

16 manifestation that I had organised in Klecka with the soldiers from my

17 brigade. And in the first days of December, I participated for the first

18 time in the meetings of the General Staff as a member of the General

19 Staff.

20 However, my activities and my connections with the Brigade 121

21 continued even after my appointment. Although another person was

22 appointed to replace me, I always had connections with the brigade. At

23 any time when there were fightings, I communicated with the brigade or I

24 participated together with the soldiers in those fightings, and this

25 continued until I left for Albania. I could never separate from my

Page 6018

1 brigade. I knew the soldiers of my brigade. Although as of November I

2 was a member of the General Staff, soldiers from 121 Brigade considered me

3 their commander until the end of the war.

4 Q. Now, I'm going to turn in a moment to events towards the end of

5 the war after the war.

6 MR. MANSFIELD: Your Honour, I wonder if this might therefore be

7 an appropriate moment to show the short film of the places he has been

8 talking about. We've made arrangement so that it can be operated from

9 this side. The suggestion is since Mr. Limaj knows the places in the

10 film -- I make it clear, it was not filmed by him, obviously. It has been

11 filmed very recently. So obviously there may have been some changes, but

12 it's just to give an idea of the layout of the landscape and the places.

13 There are at various moments written onto the screen in Albanian headings

14 in the hope of indicating the area to be covered in that section of film.

15 Could I also say to Mr. Limaj if he could add a commentary -- a

16 slow commentary - it's going to be difficult to keep up otherwise - as to

17 the places that we're dealing with, particularly if it's not entirely

18 clear. If you need it stopped -- may I just check who's going to be

19 stopping it so we know who to indicate -- oh right.

20 We have control at this side, we hope. So if you need to stop it,

21 can you do so.

22 So may I ask for the film to start running now.

23 Yes -- sorry. I think it may be -- yes, the computer monitor,

24 yes, should be --

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6019

1 THE INTERPRETER: Your Honours , the interpreters kindly ask you

2 whether we are supposed to interpret anything during this film?

3 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]

4 MR. MANSFIELD: The answer is: Yes, please. It will just be what

5 is said by Mr. Limaj.

6 JUDGE PARKER: If you would interpret what is said by Mr. Limaj,

7 please.

8 Mr. Whiting.

9 MR. WHITING: I'm sorry. I just have a point of inquiry. Maybe

10 it's being addressed at the moment, looking at the screen. I'm wondering

11 if there is any way to put a counter on -- make it visible, otherwise the

12 comments are not going -- there's going to be a very poor record about

13 what he is talking about.

14 MR. MANSFIELD: Yeah, I think there is a monitor at the bottom.

15 JUDGE PARKER: Is there no way of coordinating, though commentary

16 with the monitor, Mr. Mansfield? Unless somebody calls at significant

17 intervals the number being displayed.

18 MR. MANSFIELD: Your Honour, I think -- yes, that's, Your Honour,

19 if I may say so, a perfectly acceptable suggestion. And perhaps if my

20 junior were to call out the monitor number at the stage of the particular

21 commentary because we have it on a smaller screen.

22 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Mansfield.

23 [Videotape played]

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, here is the Komorane

25 crossroads on which Serbian forces were constantly positions, and from

Page 6020












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13 English transcripts.













Page 6021

1 this place the attacks were launched. This place was a checkpoint where

2 the forces themselves were positioned in the vicinity, and they came often

3 to this location.

4 On the upper part, there is a part of Lapusnik visible.

5 MR. KHAN: And, Your Honours, that's at 25 seconds.

6 [Videotape played]

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If possible, if you can rewind it,

8 yes, here. If you can stop it here, please.

9 MR. KHAN: 54 seconds.

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, these are the

11 mountains that we refer to as Berisa Mountains seen from the part of

12 Drenoc municipality. The range of mountains start from Carraleve. They

13 are interrupted by the main road to Lapusnik, but they continue, the range

14 continues to Drenica.

15 If you see the peak here, this hill, this is the location where

16 the Serb forces were positioned after the fall of Lapusnik gorge. The

17 Serbs were positioned here, and they withdrew from this position after the

18 Milosevic-Holbrook agreement was signed, which was, if I'm not mistaken,

19 around the 15th of October. And the Serbs, from this position, and

20 downhill had their checkpoints, and from these positions they were

21 guarding the main road.

22 On the 9th of May, they realised that the only way they could

23 protect the main road was for them to go higher up on the hill so that

24 they could control the main road better. Because on the 9th of May, we

25 descended from this place, from this rock, when we attacked them. And

Page 6022

1 therefore they assumed this -- they took up this position, a strategic

2 one, in order to protect and have under control their -- the main road.

3 [Videotape played]

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This here is called Quka e

5 Komoranit. It's a location where the Yugoslav army, not only during the

6 events in 1998 but throughout the time, used it as a military base,

7 training base, during spring. In the period in question, they were

8 positioned on this location. This is, as the crow flies, about 500 -- 3

9 to 4 kilometres from Lapusnik gorge and from the mountains that we saw

10 earlier. This is a hill and a strategic place which -- from where you can

11 see clearly all of the villages in the valleys around.

12 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, that's 4 -- at 1 minute and 4 seconds.

13 [Videotape played]

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this is a view from

15 Quka e Komoranit where the Yugoslav army was positioned. As you can see,

16 this is Lapusnik as a village. That is a focus, the zoom of the picture.

17 MR. KHAN: At 1 minute and 18 seconds.

18 [Videotape played]

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is a broader view, also

20 focussed on Lapusnik, but on the left-hand side, which cannot be seen

21 here, there are situated the villages of Kizhareke, Sedlare, and Kroimire.

22 On the right side, you can see Lapusnik village entirely, and you

23 can see that it's quite a big village and has a broad area around it.

24 MR. KHAN: 1.39.

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6023

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As I said, Your Honours, earlier,

2 the Serbian police and military forces were positioned at Quka e Komoranit

3 and this is the area that they shelled during the offensives, especially

4 on the 24th and 25th of July. From this position, they applied the --

5 their artillery against the Lapusnik, not only the village but against the

6 entire region.

7 MR. KHAN: 2.01.

8 [Videotape played]

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, you can see -- a hill

10 on the left side. You can see that the terrain is bare. There are no

11 trees at all, and it continues in this manner up to the zone which was

12 entirely under Serb attack. And from the rock and to different points as

13 of 25th of August, Serbian forces set up their positions and checkpoints

14 up to the main road.

15 MR. KHAN: At 2 minutes and 44 seconds.

16 [Videotape played]

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you could pause it here.

18 From this position, you can clearly see the peak that I explained

19 earlier, where the Serb positions were, and you can see that some houses,

20 and you can see the village of Kizhareke, Nekovce, and Shale. These were

21 the locations that were attacked by the Serb forces, infantry, and tanks,

22 and the civilian population from these villages then withdrew up to the

23 mountains because they didn't have -- where to go from this part here,

24 because then they would be directly a target of Serbian forces, but they

25 withdraw in the direction of the mountains in the nearest gorges as in the

Page 6024

1 gorge of Divjak and Klecke. The villagers knew these gorges because they

2 had always lived in their vicinity.

3 MR. KHAN: 3 minutes and 22 seconds.

4 [Videotape played]

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Again, here you can see the bare

6 terrain from the peak, from the strategic point going down. I forget to

7 mention it earlier. This is the so-called Guri i Gradines that we have so

8 often heard about during this trial. So this is the bare part of the

9 mountain. The other part was -- is what we call Lluga. It's not actually

10 a forest; it's a thorny place, place with thorns, a territory with

11 shrubs. And later on the Serbs took control of all this part.

12 MR. KHAN: 3 minutes and 43 seconds.

13 [Videotape played]

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are the surrounding villages,

15 Kishna Reka, Nekovce, and other villages that I mentioned. Maybe it's not

16 necessary to pause it here.

17 From this angle, you cannot see the village ever Klecke. You can

18 see the villages on the foot of the mountains which were Nekovce, Shale,

19 Bajice, up to Pjetershtice village and Carraleve. At that time, all these

20 villages were included in the fightings and attacked by the Serb

21 forces. They -- the Serb forces were moving towards these villages, and

22 the entire population from these villages then took to the mountains after

23 the offensive.

24 MR. KHAN: 3.52.

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6025

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the geographical area

2 comprising of some 15 kilometres, if I'm not wrong, maybe even more, it

3 shows the surrounding the ridges, the range of mountains, and the valley.

4 MR. KHAN: At 4 minutes and 13 seconds.

5 [Videotape played]

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is Goles, in the upper part.

7 The antenna that you can see known as the strongest base of Yugoslavia

8 after the 1990s. This was a position where the Serbian army always used.

9 This area was prohibited for civilians; civilians could not go to that

10 area. The army had this base as of 1990s, and it was the strongest base.

11 The entire territory of the villages that you saw previously could be seen

12 from this area, and from this area we were constantly shelled in the

13 direction of Klecka with rocket launchers. This was one of the first

14 targets of NATO after the bombing campaign started because it was a very

15 powerful military base.

16 MR. KHAN: 4 minutes and 43 seconds.

17 [Videotape played]

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are the last Serbian positions

19 at Komorane before reaching Lapusnik village.

20 MR. KHAN: 5.12.

21 [Videotape played]

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From another angle, again the last

23 positions of the Serbs. Your Honours, here there is a stream, a small

24 stream, that divided the Serbian positions before they entered Lapusnik.

25 MR. KHAN: 5.23.

Page 6026

1 [Videotape played]

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Previously you could clearly see

3 the peak.

4 [Videotape played]

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think this is part of one of the

6 neighbourhoods of Lapusnik village. This area then continues in the

7 direction of Guri i Gradines, the rock.

8 MR. KHAN: 6.31.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is Guri i Gradines where the

11 Serb forces were positioned, and from this point we walked down when we

12 attacked the Serb forces. So after the 26th of July, in order to have

13 control over the main road, the Serb forces positioned themselves on this

14 point.

15 MR. KHAN: At 6 minutes and 42 seconds.

16 [Videotape played]

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I'm not mistaken, from the KLA

18 positions on Lapusnik gorge, this is a view from there. This is the main

19 road into the direction of Peja, going to the direction of Peja, and you

20 can see the houses of Lapusnik village as scattered in different

21 neighbourhoods.

22 MR. KHAN: 7 minutes and 11 seconds.

23 [Videotape played]

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the guri in Lapusnik. If

25 you recall from yesterday, I said that the Serbian troops had taken a

Page 6027

1 strategic position here. It was precisely here in this place, it's a

2 stone, guri, in Albanian, like the Guri i Gradines. From that high

3 position we had seen the Serbs, and we went down to this place to attack

4 the Serbian forces. From here, you could have a very good view of the

5 main road, and the entire area where the KLA units were being attacked.

6 So from Gradines we attacked this place on the first day we attacked the

7 Serbs on the 9th of May. So the Serbs knew that in order to protect the

8 main road, they had to be deployed up there in order to feel secure here

9 at Lapusnik Guri, or rock.

10 MR. KHAN: 7.41

11 [Videotape played]

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I'm not mistaken, I see these two

13 signs, Guri i Gradines and Guri Lapusnik. There are some houses here, and

14 this is the place that I mentioned yesterday of the house that I visit,

15 Qerkini's house that I visited. It must be somewhere in this area.

16 MR. KHAN: 7.54.

17 [Videotape played]

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are the houses. If we could

19 rewind it a little bit. This part of the houses on the left, you could

20 have a better view of them here.

21 Could you please continue, play it on?

22 [Videotape played]

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the place. When I told you

24 yesterday that I visited a kitchen in the house, this is near -- in the

25 vicinity of this rock, this guri, the place we ate lunch, that improvised

Page 6028

1 kitchen, the place where we stayed in the beginning.

2 MR. KHAN: 8.22.

3 [Videotape played]

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From here, Your Honours, from the

5 other place you could have a very small view, whereas from here it's a

6 hill, a very steep hill. From this part, I think this is where the last

7 neighbourhood of Lapusnik is situated, bordering the mountains, Berisa

8 Mountains. You have to climb, it's a very steep terrain. It's a small

9 rise because during the Serb regime they destroyed all the mountains, the

10 hills, they divested them of any green -- of any vegetation. They sold

11 the timber, and as you see the place is very bare, because prior to the

12 1990s it was very dense with foliage and forest. But after the 1990s, as

13 you see, it became bare. The timber was exported and -- or sold to the

14 local inhabitants.

15 MR. KHAN: 8.24.

16 [Videotape played]

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There is no need for me to make a

18 comment; it's part of Lapusnik seen from the Berisa Mountains.

19 MR. KHAN: 8 minutes and 49 seconds.

20 [Videotape played]

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this is the view you

22 can have of this place from the Gradines rock, or guri, you -- from here

23 you can have -- from the Guri i Gradines you can have a view of the

24 Prishtine-Peja highway -- road. This is the place from where we attacked

25 the Serbian forces. It's a rather broader view of Lapusnik village up to

Page 6029

1 the hill that borders it. The road divides, if I could say, the mountain

2 range. You can see not only the Lapusnik village, but all the surrounding

3 villages from here. You could see the valley in the other part of

4 Drenice. You could see that part with shrubs. You can have an idea of

5 the height of the mountains and the bare terrain.

6 MR. KHAN: 9 minutes and 8 seconds.

7 [Videotape played]

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From the Gradines rock, you can have

9 a view of the villages in the direction of Quka e Komorane from another

10 angle, as you can see.

11 MR. KHAN: 10.36.

12 [Videotape played]

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In this place, in this very place,

14 after the 26th of July the Serbs were deployed here. And from here, they

15 could control the entire Lapusnik and the -- and the surrounding areas and

16 the valley as well.

17 MR. KHAN: 10.52.

18 [Videotape played]

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You see here. This is the view you

20 have, Your Honours, of the Gradines rock and the direction of Berisa and

21 Klecke. You cannot see the Berisa village here, let alone Klecke which is

22 in the hinterland. But from here the Serbs could control the entire

23 ground -- area. We could not -- we had to remove the civilian population

24 in the direction of the villages in the valleys of Kishna Reka and

25 Nekovce, because all this area was fired -- was under constant fire by the

Page 6030

1 Serb troops. From here, to where we were, there was a -- like a buffer

2 zone. We couldn't move there because we were under the attack of the Serb

3 forces. From here they had complete control of the area, the Serbs.

4 MR. KHAN: 10 minutes and 54 seconds.

5 [Videotape played]

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the direction from Gradines

7 rock to Klecke, Guri.

8 MR. KHAN: 11.04.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It takes about two hours from here

11 to go there if you take the direction directly -- I mean, as the crow

12 flies it might take five hours, but if you take other paths, shorter ones,

13 it can take you two hours to reach there. Of course I'm talking if you

14 walk on foot.

15 [Videotape played]

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From the Gradines rock, you can see

17 Komorane crossroads. It's not clear to me either, I think.

18 MR. KHAN: 11.54

19 [Videotape played]

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not clear from position we are

21 looking at it. It may be after a while I can make it out.

22 MR. KHAN: 11.59.

23 [Videotape played]

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From the Gradines rock, you can see

25 Gllogovc town. There is a ferrous nickel plant in Gllogovc where the

Page 6031

1 Serbian forces were deployed. There was rumours it was a form of

2 concentration camp, but this is where the Serbs were deployed, Drenoc of

3 Gllogovc town.

4 MR. KHAN: 12 minutes and 5 seconds.

5 [Videotape played]

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the main road, direction of

7 Peja and Prishtine from Komorane.

8 MR. KHAN: 12.57.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If we come from Drenoc, you come to

11 Komorane; on the left you can go to Pristina, on the right to Peja.

12 MR. KHAN: 13 minutes and 12 seconds.

13 [Videotape played]

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Maybe it's written here, I don't

15 know. This is the -- Orlate crossroads or Kryqi. Your Honours, from

16 Lapusnik the road to Orlate, as you can see on this signboard, this is the

17 turn to Malisheve. There was a military unit stationed here; it

18 patrolled -- usually patrolled the road after the Lapusnik gorge fell.

19 And this village, Orlate, as you can see, it was part of the Drenica

20 Operational Zone. I believe we can see it better.

21 MR. KHAN: 13 minutes and 23 seconds.

22 [Videotape played]

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you can rewind it just for a

24 second, please. No, no. Fast-forward it a little bit. A little bit

25 more, yes it's okay here.

Page 6032

1 You can pause here. Your Honours, this is the asphalt road that

2 takes from Orlate to Malisheve, and this is the road that enters in the

3 direction of Terpeze, Novoselle, Klecke. Yesterday I told you that we

4 went from Terpeze, when I went to Malisheve. So the population coming

5 from Malisheve, they entered this area through Terpeze to get to the

6 mountains. So myself and others, whenever we travelled from Klecka, we

7 used this road, went to Orlate. And from Orlate, using the asphalt road,

8 we continued to Lapusnik, because this was in the inner part of the

9 territory and there was no risk from the Serbian forces. So at all times

10 by vehicles when we travelled by vehicles, our movement from Klecka to

11 Lapusnik was via this road.

12 After the fall of the Lapusnik gorge, as I said yesterday, some of

13 the commanders, amongst them myself, we gathered in order to set up some

14 positions, military positions, in order to be able to resist and to

15 prevent the Serbs from penetrating the villages, to abandon the main road

16 and enter the villages, because a large number of people were stationed

17 there; and on the other side, if the Serbs enters Terpeze that would block

18 us fully.

19 If you can see this place here, on the left side, from the 27th

20 and 28th of August, in this house, in this location, and up to the end of

21 the war, the Serb positions -- the Serb police, correction, was positioned

22 in this house. So from the 27th of July, the Serb forces were constantly

23 here. Now we have a view from the other side of the Berisa Mountains. In

24 addition, this place is called Smonice.

25 MR. KHAN: 13 minutes and 36 seconds.

Page 6033

1 [Videotape played]

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The road that shows Klecka

3 direction.

4 MR. KHAN: 13.55.

5 [Videotape played]

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, what we previously saw

7 was the village of Terpeze as seen immediately from the road.

8 MR. KHAN: 13.58.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Again, this is the village of

11 Terpeze. You can see the gorges here. From these parts, the civilian

12 population enters the inner part of the village and then disperses in the

13 gorges. So the journey was to go directly to Novoselle and then to

14 penetrate via the villages of Lladrovc and the surrounding villages. This

15 road continues to Klecka, from Terpeze village to Klecka. And it's here

16 where we build up this defence line in order to defend the population.

17 And we had second positions, if -- in case we withdrew from these

18 positions, to continue the resistance from the second positions.

19 MR. KHAN: 14 minutes and 5 seconds.

20 [Videotape played]

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can pause here. This is my

22 base, Your Honours. Now we are in Klecke. This is a house where I

23 stayed, and from this house Jakup Krasniqi gave the statement. The window

24 looking at us, that is the window from where the spokesperson gave his

25 statement. This is a house of my nephews, and I stayed in this house

Page 6034

1 during the entire time up until December. Here I would like to separate

2 the period from the 25th of August, when the positions were taken by the

3 Serb forces, which lasted until the signing of the Holbrook-Milosevic

4 agreement. But for this period, I -- up to December, I stayed in this

5 house.

6 MR. KHAN: 14 minutes and 22 seconds.

7 [Videotape played]

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is a bakery. I would like to

9 use opportunity -- correction, this is a place that was used by my nephews

10 for limestone, burning of limestone. For some time, this was the only way

11 for someone to provide for their families. So the only way was to sell

12 limestone, especially, in the 1980s and 1990s. And every family had their

13 limestone oven. That's why I wanted this picture to be in the film so

14 that I can explain this to you.

15 MR. KHAN: 14 minutes and 29 seconds.

16 [Videotape played]

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are the houses near my base.

18 As I mentioned yesterday, we had enough space where soldiers could stay.

19 And as for the allegations that some corpses were burned in Klecke, I

20 asked the General Staff to conduct an investigation about this and to

21 refer the cause to The Hague investigators or to bring an independent

22 commission to verify the truth. The General Staff at that time asked for

23 such a thing, but the Serbs caused some problems. I think that a Finnish

24 team arrived, but I don't know what happened afterwards.

25 MR. KHAN: 14.37.

Page 6035












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 6036

1 [Videotape played]

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This wall continues downwards - you

3 don't have to pause - this is the compound that belongs to my nephews,

4 Your Honours. This is the yard, their yard.

5 You can continue.

6 MR. KHAN: 14.46.

7 [Videotape played]

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So this entire area with this wall

9 belongs to my nephews. Everything that is inside the walls belongs to

10 these young men, and that's why I was permitted to stay here with my

11 people.

12 This is Klecke, as I described it earlier. The houses are

13 scattered, and from here you can also see the village of Divjak. You can

14 see some houses of Divjak and some of Klecke. Klecka has no more houses

15 than these than you can see on the picture.

16 As I said yesterday, Klecka identifies with my nephews, because

17 most of it is inhabited but my nephews.

18 MR. KHAN: 14.53.

19 MR. MANSFIELD: Your Honour, I see the time. It might be

20 convenient to break at that moment.

21 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Mansfield.

22 We will resume at five minutes past 4.00

23 --- Recess taken at 3.44 p.m.

24 --- On resuming at 4.09 p.m.

25 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Mansfield.

Page 6037

1 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes, if we could continue, there's a little more

2 film to see. And the same procedure as before, thank you.

3 MR. KHAN: Recommencing at 14 minutes and 53 seconds.

4 [Videotape played]

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, you can see a gorge on

6 the right-hand side of this house. This is one of the gorges where the

7 civilian population was sheltering after August and later on, even before

8 August, after the gorge was penetrated. After August, except for this

9 position, the Serb forces were also positioned in the entire area; they

10 established their own points. And we did not have any possibility to take

11 our positions. We had to penetrate inside the gorges and create there our

12 positions and defend the population. These houses in these villages were

13 under Serb control for two months. The villages in the direction of

14 Novoselle and Divjak village on the left-hand side.

15 MR. KHAN: 14 minutes and 56 seconds

16 [Videotape played]

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can see here Goleshi; it's

18 higher than Klecka. From here, I said it earlier that the Serbian forces

19 shelled here -- from here uninterruptedly on this village, on this part.

20 Sometime around the 20th or the 22nd, but especially after the 25th of

21 July, this was shelled from Goleshi, because Goleshi it's much higher than

22 Klecka and this area here.

23 MR. KHAN: 15 minutes and 15 seconds.

24 [Videotape played]

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This road leads to the villages of

Page 6038

1 Javora and Luznica. Javora and Luznica are villages in the municipality

2 of Suhareke. This is the boundary between the municipalities. This is

3 the Lipjan municipality. Klecka for some time was part of the Lipjan

4 municipality and then became part of the Malisheve municipality. They

5 decided themselves to become part of the Malisheve municipality, the

6 villagers, I mean. While Javora in this direction and Luznica remained in

7 the Suhareke municipality. So here is the boundary between Lipjan,

8 Suhareke, Malisheve, and Drenoc.

9 MR. KHAN: 15 minutes and 24 seconds.

10 [Videotape played]

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All the houses you can see here are

12 houses of my relatives, of my nephews.

13 [Videotape played]

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is a stable. My nephews had at

15 the time this stable. They at the time had around 500 sheep, they also

16 had cows, and this is the stable. I think that now it has the same

17 function, but it serves as a cowshed more because they don't have sheep

18 anymore.

19 MR. KHAN: 15 minutes and 47 seconds.

20 [Videotape played]

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the entrance, the entrance

22 of my base where I stayed.

23 MR. KHAN: 15.52.

24 [Videotape played]

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the yard which goes

Page 6039

1 downhill.

2 MR. KHAN: 16 minutes.

3 [Videotape played]

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you could stop it here. Honoured

5 Judges, if you could see here, this is a new house, it has been built

6 recently, while the houses below that house they were built before the

7 war. As I said, we decided to base ourselves in Klecka because it was a

8 safe place for us, and the situation was such that we could stay there

9 without being detected by others. So this is how far our families' houses

10 were from the place where I stayed. Because these people had workers

11 working for them. Somebody worked as a shepherd who cared for the sheep,

12 others worked as farmers, so it was practical for us to have our nephews

13 pick up the food for us. And because they had workers there, nobody would

14 ask questions why they needed the food. So it was not extraordinary for

15 them to move from -- to move up and down and go and find food and nobody

16 would ask questions. That's why I want to give just one example.

17 On the 9th of May, when we came out publicly and we were known as

18 members of the KLA the villagers saw us, the villagers of Klecka, one of

19 my relative, of my nephew's relatives in Klecka, his house is here in this

20 group of houses, because these people that lived here they are close

21 relatives. So one of them told us -- he said that, I have been to Drenica

22 for a week and slept there in Drenica, only to see a member of the KLA,

23 and I did not know that you were here in my village. You have been here

24 very close to us and I didn't know it. So this shows that the degree of

25 secrecy and how we went about undetected.

Page 6040

1 Even the houses that you can see here, one of the houses, a white,

2 one here on the front -- on the forefront, and two others below that,

3 these are houses of my relatives, of my nephews - even this on the right

4 side - while two or three other houses belonged to their relatives.

5 MR. KHAN: 16 minutes and 7 seconds.

6 [Videotape played]

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So this is the gorge. This is the

8 gorge where the civilians stayed.

9 If you could -- can see the houses below, this is the village of

10 Shale, or Sedlare, but it's far away from here. And the civilian

11 population from these villages, they entered this gorge, and we set up a

12 defensive circle from Shale to Klecka, each when Klecka was occupied.

13 MR. KHAN: 16 minutes and 13 seconds.

14 [Videotape played]

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. You can see here the

16 distance. This is the gorge, the valley, from the distance. It is

17 difficult to see from this distance, but maybe the cameraman could not

18 approach it anymore.

19 This gorge belongs to the Sedlare village, or Shale village.

20 MR. KHAN: 16.32.

21 [Videotape played]

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Go on. These are houses of the

23 Klecka village. These are dispersed houses but they are the same ones

24 that we have seen before.

25 MR. KHAN: 16.59.

Page 6041

1 [Videotape played]

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I can explain here, Honourable

3 Judges. When I say "houses," I mean households because some of them are

4 compounds. When I say a house, it means in fact a compound which is under

5 one head of household. It belongs -- they belong to one person. Even the

6 compound of my nephews included four or five houses, but these are houses

7 that belong to one head of household.

8 MR. KHAN: 17 minutes and 12 seconds.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can go on because I don't have

11 any comment about this.

12 [Videotape played]

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, you can see the arrow that

14 shows the direction from where you can see Lapusnik. Of course, Lapusnik

15 cannot be seen from here, not even Novoselle or Shatiri [phoen] neither

16 Berisa, because it's very far from here and the terrain is such that you

17 cannot see it. But the direction is this: To go to Lapusnik and Novo

18 Selo and Terpeze, if you go through the mountains, then you get to Novo

19 Selo first and then Berisa. And of course I explained to you how we went

20 to attack the main road, Peja-Pristina, but these were secondary roads,

21 not main roads. These were roads that were paths that were used by the

22 villagers.

23 MR. KHAN: 18.43.

24 [Videotape played]

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can carry on.

Page 6042

1 [Videotape played]

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All these houses were burned down

3 after the Serbian forces penetrated here. They were all burnt and

4 destroyed. So they have been reconstructed or sometimes repaired if there

5 were walls that remained after the war. Some of them were repaired by us,

6 the soldiers, after November, when we entered Klecka after the Serbian

7 forces left. For example, it was ourselves, the soldiers, that repaired

8 the base where we stayed, the house where we stayed, after the Serbian

9 forces left.

10 MR. KHAN: 22 minutes and 43 seconds.

11 [Videotape played]

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Up to now we were looking at the

13 Lipjan commune, the part that is in the direction of the Lipjan -- sorry,

14 municipality. Now we see in the direction of Malisheve municipality. So

15 in your focus here, you can see the villages of the Malisheve

16 municipality, and the mountains there are mountains of the Suhareke

17 municipality. So this is the other part of the Berisa Mountains or

18 Klecka.

19 This village on the far left - you can see the houses here - is

20 the Belanica village. We might see it by -- closer earlier, but in this

21 direction, if you go in this direction, you would be able to see my birth

22 place, my village. While -- here at the foot of the mountain here, you

23 cannot see it, but there is a village here which is the Senik village.

24 MR. KHAN: 23 minutes and 3 seconds.

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6043

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So this is the road, yes. There is

2 one here, one road here, which is asphalted road. This road comes towards

3 the direction of the village Senik. There are some other roads or paths

4 but they are very difficult roads, dirt roads, used by the villagers when

5 they went to gather firewood and so on. As I said, the deforestation

6 started after 1990. And this plain or this meadow that you can see here,

7 there are vineyards here; they were part of the socialist cooperatives in

8 the past. And there was one enterprise here, a farming enterprise, and

9 there were about 500 or 600 villagers who worked there. So all of it is a

10 vineyard, the whole territory. But after 1990, the workers were fired and

11 the vineyard was destroyed. So it was left there like that.

12 MR. KHAN: 23 minutes and 19 seconds.

13 [Videotape played]

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, now you can see clearly the

15 Senik village, and the road leads to Banje, the village of Banje.

16 Honourable Judges, in July, during the offensive, the Serbian

17 forces came up to here, up to Senik village, and this plain you can see

18 here was full of weaponry, Serbian weaponry. They came up to here, and

19 the Senik village was under their control. They practically surrounded

20 the whole mountain here, from both sides, from Malisheve and Lipjan.

21 You can see here my neighbourhood as well; it's the first

22 neighbourhood on the right. It's a little darker and some houses can be

23 seen of my neighbourhood.

24 MR. KHAN: 23 minutes and 30 seconds.

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6044

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, this is a close-up. If you can

2 see, there's a big building here, which is the school. I completed my

3 primary education here, and this is part of the village.

4 MR. KHAN: 23.39.

5 [Videotape played]

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can see here most of the

7 villages of the Malisheve municipality.

8 MR. KHAN: 23.47.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If I'm not mistaken, this is

11 Malisheve, as far as I can see -- no, it isn't, because there is a mosque

12 here. It must be Belanica, because Malisheve does not have a mosque.

13 MR. KHAN: 23.58.

14 [Videotape played]

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the Lladrovc village. The

16 Serbian forces were here as well, and the whole civilian population from

17 here, from these villages, went to the Klecka mountains for shelter. So

18 villagers from Malisheve municipality, my village, they went towards the

19 mountains of Klecka in the gorges, and they had the same defence system

20 that we had on the other side.

21 MR. KHAN: 24 minutes and 5 seconds.

22 [Videotape played]

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the Senik village I

24 mentioned earlier. The Serbian forces came here to Klecka. The civilian

25 population left, and the Serbian forces shelled with a tanks -- with their

Page 6045

1 tanks this village in order for their infantry to be able to enter the

2 village. They killed a whole family here, a family of 11 members, a woman

3 and a little child, so it was because of Serbian shelling 11 civilians

4 were killed immediately. This was the largest loss we had in civilians,

5 the largest number of casualties. There were also other people killed.

6 We also had wounded people but not to that degree.

7 And this is the mill, if you can see here. It's in the middle of

8 the village, the tall building. And we went -- this is the place I told

9 you we went to get flour for the civilian population. From -- we went

10 from the mountains to this mill to get supplies. After we got all the

11 flour then we had -- there was some grain sacks there that we took as

12 well. But this happened later, not in August, neither in September, maybe

13 April -- or March or April 1999.

14 MR. KHAN: 24 minutes and 25 seconds.

15 [Videotape played]

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Here is a view in the direction of

17 Shtime or Carraleve and Kroimire. Behind the mountains, the mountains in

18 the far end, if you get on top of those, you can see Kroimire and other

19 villages, Carraleve and then Shtime, so they are behind those mountains.

20 While on this side you will find the villages of Duge, Karaqice. I'm not

21 sure where they belonged to the Shtime or Lipjan community -- sorry,

22 municipality, but I think they belonged to the Lipjan municipality. I'm

23 not a hundred per cent sure.

24 MR. KHAN: 24 minutes and 31 seconds.

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6046

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the Lladrovc gorge. As you

2 can see, the population, the civilian population came into this gorge for

3 shelter. There are seven or eight gorges in this area where the

4 population -- civilian population was sheltered.

5 If can you see here in the far left, you can see Malisheve. Now

6 you can see Malisheve.

7 MR. KHAN: 24 minutes and 40 seconds.

8 [Videotape played]

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you could stop here.

10 Honourable Judges, this is the martyrs' cemetery, soldiers that

11 have laid down their lives, soldiers of the 121 Brigade. These were

12 soldiers that belonged to various units before, but then those units

13 became part of the 121 Brigade. And they were considered martyrs of this

14 brigade although they might have been killed before the brigade was

15 formed. So here, there are around 70 martyrs that have been buried,

16 people who were killed during the fighting.

17 MR. KHAN: 25 minutes and 8 seconds.

18 [Videotape played]

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the road from the village

20 Novoselle or Shatiri. From here you can see Klecka.

21 MR. KHAN: 25.36.

22 THE WITNESS : [Interpretation] So it's from this memorial complex

23 that you can see where Klecka and where my base was, because the complex

24 is between the Klecka village and Shatiri or Novo Selo village.

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6047

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the same view. This shows

2 the terrain, the places where we sheltered the population. From here, in

3 28 minutes or half an hour you can get to my village, of course by car.

4 MR. KHAN: 25 minutes and 55 seconds.

5 [Videotape played]

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, this is Novoselle or Shatiri

7 you can see here the houses that are dispersed all over the terrain. I

8 don't know how many houses or households it has.

9 MR. KHAN: 26 minutes and 16 seconds.

10 [Videotape played]

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] A little further.

12 Your Honours, you can see here the entrance to Rahovec. If you

13 can see this ridge here, the soldiers were here, the soldiers that got

14 into Rahovec and the units. And if you could go further with the images.

15 This is the road that comes from Malisheve to Rahovec.

16 MR. KHAN: 26 minutes and 53 seconds.

17 [Videotape played]

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you could stop here, please.

19 This is the road that I mentioned yesterday, the road that leads

20 downtown -- to downtown Rahovec and the other one that leads outside

21 town. The other one is the ring road; it goes by Rahovec and then you can

22 go to Prizren. So when I mentioned yesterday that I went to Rahovec, I

23 meant this ring road that goes by Rahovec but not -- does not go into the

24 centre of Rahovec.

25 The house on the left here, three-storeyed house. This is the

Page 6048

1 house where I met those soldiers with whom I spoke about what was going

2 on. And the next day, when I met Agim Qelaj and same the Zyropi -- and

3 maybe I'm wrong about the name, but it was also Musa and Rexhep. It was

4 here that I met them. And Agim improvised here some kind of headquarters

5 for those two days because the General Staff had appointed him a commander

6 for this operation.

7 MR. KHAN: 27 minutes.

8 [Videotape played]

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So this is the road that goes by the

10 town, it does not go into the centre, and this is where I travelled.

11 MR. KHAN: 27 minutes and 11 seconds.

12 [Videotape played]

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can go on with the images.

14 [Videotape played]

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it's okay here.

16 When I said yesterday, Your Honours, that we went towards the road

17 in order not to leave the -- not to let the Serbian forces enter Rahovec.

18 So this is a -- a small bridge and there's a stream down here, but it was

19 difficult to build a defence line here to protect the civilians. So if we

20 can see here on the computer, on your left, that's where we started to dig

21 some trenches. And there's where I stayed with the 12 soldiers and some

22 soldiers came later, some other soldiers came later. And that was the

23 resistance line, as we called it. I stayed there until I got sick.

24 MR. KHAN: 28 minutes and 15 seconds.

25 [Videotape played]

Page 6049

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, this is the ridge. I said

2 there's a kind of a ridge where we stayed, but there were Serbian snipers

3 here.

4 MR. KHAN: 28 minutes and 25 seconds.

5 [Videotape played]

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the crossroads. Maybe you

7 should go further with the images a little bit.

8 MR. KHAN: 28 minutes and 33 seconds.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, here.

11 This is the crossroads, Your Honours. On your left, the road

12 leads to Rahovec; you can get into Rahovec. So on your right, that is the

13 road that goes towards Malisheve. And that's the ring road that does not

14 get in the -- does not go into the centre of Rahovec, and this is where I

15 met those 12 soldiers. And I said that the Serbs shelled here. It was

16 exactly where this yellow car is, where the Serbs shelled, and I was there

17 with the 12 soldiers. And we left only a couple of minutes before the

18 shells fell here.

19 MR. KHAN: 28 minutes and 36 seconds.

20 [Videotape played]

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, this is an illustration that

22 shows the direction towards Pristina, the entrance to Rahovec. And the

23 road that comes from Gjakova on the right side, and the other one goes

24 towards Prizren.

25 MR. KHAN: 28.44.

Page 6050












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13 English transcripts.













Page 6051

1 [Videotape played]

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can go on.

3 This is the town of Rahovec. It's -- this image is taken from a

4 hill. This is an old town, but it's a very dense town, as you can see.

5 MR. KHAN: 29 minutes and 58 seconds.

6 [Videotape played]

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the town of Malisheve, Your

8 Honours; it's a small town. It used to be a big village; it's now called

9 a small town. When the Serbian forces penetrated here on the 25th of

10 July, 25th to the 27th of July, during the summer offensive, this village

11 or this small town was totally burned down, razed to the ground.

12 MR. KHAN: 30 minutes and 46 seconds.

13 [Videotape played]

14 MR. MANSFIELD: Your Honour, that's I think the end of the film

15 because it's -- may I thank my co-counsel for his very adept control

16 through the film.

17 JUDGE PARKER: Will you tender the -- I'm not sure what format you

18 have it in.

19 MR. MANSFIELD: A DVD, yes. It is in fact -- I will get the

20 number, if it can be exhibited now, or give it a number now anyway. The

21 item we're up to DL9, I think.

22 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

23 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Defence Exhibit DL9.


25 Q. Now, Mr. Limaj, I want to turn now in the final stages to some

Page 6052

1 developments towards the end of the war and after the war, and I'll do

2 them by topic heading.

3 The first one is the Rambouillet talks and what happened after

4 that. Do you remember when they were, just roughly?

5 A. Well, it might be appropriate that I mention here after I became a

6 member of the General Staff, I was appointed chief of military police. As

7 for Rambouillet talks, in February 1999, after the massacre at Recak where

8 the Serb forces killed more than 40 civilians, the international community

9 took urgent steps in organising a peace conference for Kosova, and the

10 KLA, its General Staff, engaged for this conference and decided to take

11 part in it. The Albanian delegation consisted of the political staff of

12 the KLA.

13 At the time, I was a member of the General Staff. I was in

14 Kosova. I made sure that we reached a peaceful agreement in Rambouillet.

15 It is a public knowledge now, this fact, that talks in Rambouillet lasted

16 for two weeks but they did not conclude with the signing of a peaceful

17 agreement because there were members of the units who were net yet clear

18 about the importance of that agreement. They were rather confused and

19 unclear. Of course this was the doing of certain persons. Therefore,

20 they demanded that the Kosova delegation return to Kosova to make clear to

21 the people the importance of this agreement. Some of us who were members

22 of the General Staff in Kosova tried to convince the people that the

23 delegation in Rambouillet represents the KLA, has full authority, and that

24 we should support its stance.

25 The decision to take part in Rambouillet I think was most

Page 6053

1 important. I think this is where I played a crucial role regarding the

2 participation in such a peaceful conference, which after all was our goal,

3 to come to the face when we could resolve once and for all the question of

4 the status of Kosova. But as you know, the Serbs refused to

5 accept the agreement of Rambouillet and after the delegation returned to

6 Kosova and made further consultations. All the zone commanders agreed

7 with this peaceful agreement and authorised our delegation to sign such an

8 agreement. The Serbs did not sign it, and this led to the NATO air

9 strikes.

10 Q. And following the conference, were you given a particular role and

11 appointed as a particular minister?

12 A. The Kosova delegation, in its constant efforts to unify the

13 Albanian political factors there, such efforts had been going on during

14 all the wartime and it was also the insistence of the international

15 community that the Albanians had a unified delegation in order to form a

16 government with representatives from all the political forces. Apparently

17 the Albanians in Rambouillet agreed to form a joint government with

18 representatives of the KLA, LDK, the movement for democratic unity - I'm

19 not sure about the name it was called at that time - and some independent

20 interlocutors. So they had agreed to form a government.

21 The chairman of the delegation in Rambouillet was Mr. Hashim Thaqi

22 from the KLA. He was the one that chaired the delegation, the Albanian

23 delegation, in the talks. So they agreed that the person who would form a

24 joint Albanian government should be a KLA representative; in this case, it

25 was the leader of the political leadership, Mr. Thaqi. And they had

Page 6054

1 divided also the ministries, the Ministry of Defence, of order, and some

2 other ministries that they had thought to give to the representatives of

3 the KLA. And in this case, I was elected to be a deputy minister of

4 defence of the provisional government it was called then. This occurred

5 in April -- April, May, end of April, I think, beginning of May, if I'm

6 not wrong.

7 Q. Yes. I think just to make clear, we are now in 1999? That's

8 right.

9 A. Yes, always in 1999.

10 Q. And if I may, just move forward.

11 Were you also engaged in talks for the demilitarisation of the KLA

12 clearly towards the end of the war itself?

13 A. Yes. After the departure, the withdrawal, of the Serb forces and

14 the Kumanova agreement, the entry of the NATO forces in Kosova,

15 international representatives - in this case NATO representatives - and a

16 KFOR commander for Kosova; as well as international diplomats; the former

17 spokesperson of the state department, James Rubin, of the delegation;

18 together with some NATO officers headed by Mr. Jackson, in order to

19 demilitarise the KLA. They demanded that the KLA be demilitarised, hand

20 over its -- surrender its weapons, and go home. In these talks, I was a

21 direct participant together with the chairman of the government,

22 Mr. Thaqi; the Chief of Staff of KLA, who at that time was Agim Qelaj; and

23 for some time present were also some zone commanders. But then the talks

24 were continued by us.

25 And we came to the conclusion in a week to sign an agreement on

Page 6055

1 the demilitarisation and transformation of the KLA, an agreement which we

2 signed at the KFOR base. The NATO forces entered Kosova on the 12th, and

3 we signed this agreement on the demilitarisation, transformation of the

4 KLA on the 17th of June.

5 Q. And in relation to this exercise, were you, yourself, personally

6 thanked by those who had participated for the contribution you had made to

7 achieving this result?

8 A. I think that in many instances -- I have people who have

9 followed developments, various analysts, various international

10 organisations have expressed their -- their pleasure at what was done at

11 that time. Because it was obvious that the aim, the goal, of the KLA was

12 to liberate the country. Now that the Serb forces had withdrawn, we were

13 willing to return to normal life.

14 I want to stress, however, that we didn't want to demilitarise the

15 KLA immediately because we didn't know what to do with the forces, but to

16 transform it gradually, to retain a force which would be looked upon by

17 the citizen as a protection core. And this demand was going to be

18 fulfilled after the demilitarisation process. So for the three-month

19 period, from June to September, the demilitarisation of the units of the

20 KLA would take place, then talks should be held on a possibly

21 transformation of the KLA, and joint group of the joint staff of the KLA

22 and NATO was formed to demilitarise the KLA over a three-month period.

23 After three months this commission thought that the

24 demilitarisation was successful and complete and then talks continued for

25 some more time. We visited London, Brussels, Rome, Washington, to present

Page 6056

1 our views why it was important for a -- a body represented by members of

2 the KLA that would be considered as a protection force by the people in

3 general. We managed to find the understanding of such international

4 centres during our visits and thanks to the constructive work we had done

5 in cooperation with the international community, we managed to transform

6 the KLA, to form a protection corps in Kosova which would deal with the

7 protection of people's interest in case of emergencies, in case of

8 dangers. Serve as a protective measure in general.

9 The mandate of this force is not very clear. It is meant to be a

10 civilian emergency corps, but a force that will have a more well defined

11 the mission at a future phase. So the fate of this organisation depends

12 on the final definition of the Kosova status. We managed to sign such an

13 agreement with General Clark and Jackson, but it was also endorsed by the

14 international community, something that led to the creation of the Kosovo

15 protection corps which for us was a major victory because we managed to

16 retain a form of organisation, a military organisation, that would provide

17 guarantees for the future.

18 The agreement on demilitarisation foresees that part of the

19 members of the KLA remain with the Kosovar protection corps. You can

20 imagine, Your Honours, to form an army within a year, to fight and then

21 within the same year to demilitarise it, to disband it, this is

22 something that has never occurred in the history of mankind. For a body,

23 for an organisation to be formed, to perform its function and then to

24 demilitarise it, I think this is a concrete example to show that none of

25 these people wanted to take arms because they wished to do so but just

Page 6057

1 because they wanted to drive out the Milosevic violent regime. And after

2 that, they had no reason to stick to their weapons. After that, all of

3 them returned to their daily life.

4 So as I said, we foresaw that some of the forces remain with the

5 Kosovar protection corps, whereas the political wing of the KLA should

6 form a political party to start the political activity in the conditions

7 of Free Kosova. The political wing formed the political party which is

8 called the Democratic Party of Kosovo started the establishment of its

9 respective structures all over Kosovo to prepare it to take part in the

10 election and to contribute the institutional building of Kosova.

11 Q. And it right to say that you participated in a number of elections

12 that followed, both local and at national level?

13 A. I was elected the secretary for public relations after the

14 establishment of this party. I was the person who had authority to

15 communicate with the public until election came. I participated in the

16 first local election, democratic election held in 2000. I ran in the

17 context of the Democratic Party for Pristina communal assembly. In 2001 I

18 participated in the electoral campaign and ran as a deputy for the Kosova

19 assembly in the context of the proportional list of the Democratic Party

20 of Kosova. And in 2002, again I ran for Pristina communal assembly. So I

21 participated directly in three elections held in Kosova until then, and I

22 was elected as a member of the assembly, even though we wanted to win, but

23 it was the vote of the citizens that decided. Then I was elected as

24 department to the assembly of Kosova from where I came here.

25 Q. I want to at this stage, if I may, these are the

Page 6058

1 final exhibits. If you'd just look at two exhibits.

2 MR. MANSFIELD: Your Honour, I think there are translations of

3 them.

4 Q. Would you identify what they are and when you have we will ask

5 that they be exhibited. They both concern elections.

6 Copies have already been provided to everybody. There are two

7 separate document there is. I have given you an original of one and a

8 copy of the other one. One is your candidacy for the mayor of Pristina,

9 and the other one is -- contains your photograph on it. It's a coloured

10 brochure and you have it in your hand at the moment. And it has a number

11 of exhortations within it and observations within it.

12 Which is the first, in terms of time? There were three elections

13 so which of the -- these documents relates to the first election?

14 A. This brochure, Your Honours, which has on the front page my

15 picture, it's a kind of propaganda material, which gives some information

16 about my person. It was prepared during the first local election of 2000

17 for the city of Pristina.

18 This paper here, which is a kind of leaflet addressed to the

19 citizens, we used to distribute it to every house, it dates 2002 to the

20 local elections at that time.

21 MR. MANSFIELD: I wonder if in fact to save having a proliferation

22 these two documents could become DL10. With translations. There are

23 translations already provided.

24 JUDGE PARKER: They will be received.

25 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, the Defence Exhibit for candidate

Page 6059

1 profile of Fatmir Limaj for mayor of Pristina and translation will be

2 given exhibit number DL10. And the next one which is the PDK leaflet of

3 Fatmir Limaj and translation will be given exhibit number DL11.

4 MR. MANSFIELD: Now, I want to ask you this question for a

5 particular reason, which may be obvious.

6 Q. During those years - that is, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002 - did you

7 appear on many occasions Kosovo national television in relation to your

8 position politically?

9 A. During 1998, 1999, I had appeared on television. As of 2000 --

10 when I think in reality it was 1999, but let's say from 2000, the Kosovo

11 television was a well-fledged [as interpreted] television. After the war

12 I was a spokesperson of the Democratic Party and I was the one who made

13 clear to the public every political stand of the KLA.

14 I took part of the party -- correction. I was a member of the

15 transitional council set up by UNMIK where I represented my party

16 and those meetings served as a mini-parliament, Your Honours. They were

17 the first creations of the institutions in Kosovo. They were broadcast

18 life or in the evening as special features for the citizens of Kosovo,

19 that is, the debates in the transitional council. It was the only council

20 where the main political subjects participated and debated with the

21 representatives of the international community regarding crucial issues in

22 Kosova and other problems.

23 There was an administrative counsel as well beside that, which was

24 formed of four political groups, three Albanians and one Serb. And the

25 UNMIK representative. So that was as -- served as a mini-parliament of

Page 6060

1 the transitional council for the citizens of Kosova to follow.

2 That was the first time for them to -- to see what was going on in

3 their television. Things which they hadn't been able to see in Albanian

4 since 1999. And there was several dailies, daily newspapers which

5 appeared, four or five, at that time. I was, in short, of the party

6 spokesperson. Our party was one of the most important parties and I was

7 the one to make public its stand.

8 Q. Could I just ask whether -- you did say"things that they hadn't

9 been able to see in Albanian since 1999." Did you mean 1999 or did you

10 mean --

11 A. No I meant 1999 -- 1990.

12 Q. 1990, yes, thank you.

13 A. Maybe I was wrong. It was--

14 THE INTERPRETER: It was the interpreter's mistake.


16 Q. You mentioned there obviously television and it's newspapers. Did

17 the same apply to radio channels as well in Kosovo?

18 A. Yes, certainly. Sometimes I have participated in some local radio

19 programmes, in addition to the main radio station. I have visited every

20 city who has invited me to unfurl my views, our position. Sometimes I

21 appeared on local television stations. It was after the war. We wanted

22 to speak about our experience. It was in a way a kind of documentary.

23 People were interested in knowing who participated in the war, in knowing

24 the various commanders so I have participated in such programmes. I have

25 had interlocutors and I have talked with viewers about war developments.

Page 6061

1 People wished to know people who participated in the war and to

2 hear from them what they had been through.

3 Q. And of lesser importance but again relevant: Did your photograph

4 appear on posters in Pristina and elsewhere?

5 A. You are well versed in democratic experience here. You know very

6 well what an election campaign involves in every country that holds such

7 elections. In our case, in all of the cities of Pristina, all over the

8 town, even outside the town, wherever I participated, I attended various

9 electoral rallies speaking on behalf of my party and I could see the

10 posters all over the place. Like the one I showed, the small one. There

11 is a big poster. Posters like that were placed all over Pristina, I think,

12 with B 1 or B 2 format.

13 Q. Now, before we come to the very last situation which was your

14 arrest in 2003, therefore I want to deal just in general terms your

15 thoughts between the end of the war and your arrest about the final status

16 in relation to Kosovo, and your hopes and objectives politically for

17 Kosovo at that time.

18 A. Our objectives clear, at least mine -- my objectives. They

19 were in conformity with the country's developments in conformity with the

20 developments or even the stand for others. For me Kosovo was in a

21 transitional stage. We needed to build the institutions and want the

22 international community to help us because we started from the scratch.

23 The international institutions came, representatives came to a country

24 tree which lacked everything. We had to begun, as I said, from scratch,

25 from a classical occupation. We had entered a new democratic system which

Page 6062

1 was unknown to us. In the 1990s, Kosovo didn't have the opportunity to

2 develop in a democratic way like the other countries were. So from a

3 classical occupation which lasted for ten years, with all its problems,

4 now we had to pass on to an unknown democratic process for which people

5 were not prepared to take into their hands the leadership of the

6 institutions. And to make this institutions function properly we need the

7 presence of the international community to prepare the Kosovars to be able

8 to take into their hands the leadership of their institutions and to go to

9 the final stages, that of the independence of Kosovo.

10 So my stand was, my orientation, my goal was to go in the

11 direction of establishment of rule of law, democratic state, with

12 strong powerful democratic institutions; to establish a rule of law,

13 create a safe environment and to have the state of the rule of law

14 function properly for to us be prepare the for the final stages in this

15 case, the independence of Kosova.

16 That was our main objective, main objective of my political

17 activity at that time, in close cooperation always with the international

18 community.

19 Q. And within that what was your attitude towards ethnic minorities

20 within Kosovo?

21 A. My political stance was known. Now I was a person who had made my

22 views publicly known as well as those of my party. Our position towards

23 minority was clear. I have always stated during election campaigns and in

24 rallies we have an example. We have the example of Milosevic, I have

25 always said. If we want to have the same fate as Milosevic, who a

Page 6063

1 dictatorship state, then we know better than anyone what such a state

2 means when you deprive people of their rights when you suppress, use

3 violence against them. So for us we don't need any better example of not

4 doing what we should not do.

5 The other alternative is the one that is presented to us by the

6 international community. We are still a long way from civilised Europe

7 and world and therefore we should undertake the steps to build a free and

8 society where every citizen of Kosova should feel equal and free. This is

9 an objective we have for the future. This is not easy for us because the

10 war had left its imprint. A large number of Serbs had left Kosova with

11 the withdrawal of the forces. Some of them had been involved in the use

12 of violence. So after the entry of the KFOR and the return of 700,000

13 Albanians who returned to Kosova in a month, refugees from all over, or

14 from places -- or different places they returned finding that their

15 parents, their children had died. Among them there were people who were

16 keen on revenge because they blamed the Serbs for everything that had

17 happened to them. So in this situation, having 700.000 people return in a

18 month to a country which lacked -- practically lacked institutions, which

19 had an institutional vacuum because Serbia pulled out with all of its

20 institutions. So all those who return in this case, those who came in its

21 place, that is the KLA and the UNMIK, they came to a place where they were

22 not prepared to take the lead of the situation. So this vacuum, that

23 chaos that prevailed unfortunately brought about -- produced a lot of

24 pain. There are Serbs but there are also Albanians who were killed during

25 that time who were displaced because of the grave situation after the

Page 6064

1 war. We wanted to heal these consequences. We wanted to convince the

2 Serbs that we are not going to do the same things that the others did, but

3 there was profound distrust. Those human relations we used to have before

4 the war were disrupted. So these needed time to heal. We started

5 negotiations with the Serbs. I think we did good work. I have constant

6 contacts with their representatives in the institutions we had in the

7 provisional council, in parliament, and I think they knew very well what

8 my objectives were.

9 For your information, I think that Serbia had lost even it's moral

10 right in Kosova after what we had done to them. With a fleeing of a

11 million people from Kosova, I think Serbia had no moral right to have any

12 say in Kosova. So we were trying to make it clear to our Serb colleagues

13 to work together, to build Kosova, to have our rights, each of us, but

14 without the influence of that of Belgrade. Even now, even today, I think

15 the Serbs have been under -- they thought that everything had to be done

16 through Belgrade, and I think that they still abide by the same position,

17 despite some positive changes made recently. This is how political

18 developments went, even though we had made clear our objectives, they had

19 their reasons to be -- to feel hesitant because their life was still

20 difficult, most of the Albanians wanted to help them. But the situation

21 of security was, and still is, fluid, just to a large extent. It was

22 difficult for us to build the security institutions. However, I really

23 must believe that if we don't take the initiative of creating, building,

24 trust among us, nothing will succeed, no matter what UNMIK does.

25 I regret it to say, but in this case, in Kosova, we should have

Page 6065












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Page 6066

1 brave people, people who are willing to assume responsibilities upon their

2 own shoulders and not to do things only for the sake of the international

3 community, as the case is today in Kosova. With -- we should do things

4 because this is the interest -- for the benefit of the people, not because

5 international community wants us to do that. Standards are for the

6 people, for the citizens; they are the ones who build life.

7 In a word, these were some of the objectives or my orientation. I

8 think that brave politicians, courageous politicians, are still missing in

9 Kosova, politicians who should assume responsibility for the good of the

10 people. But unfortunately, the ones who have -- think only of their own

11 interests, and this has created tension in my country. This is my

12 personal view. I don't want to delve deeper into politics.

13 Q. I just want to ask you one more thing on this, and that is really

14 for a personal example of your attitude towards, in this case, a Serb who

15 lived in a flat on the floor above you in Pristina. Is this something

16 that you're able to illustrate in relation to these views that you have

17 expressed?

18 A. Your Honours, I have stated this in 1999, in 2000 for Free Europe

19 or BBC, where I was interviewed. And I have stated this: That I wished I

20 was not a citizen of Kosova in 1999 because I was ashamed of the

21 developments at that time, because that was not the ideal or the objective

22 of those who fell in the war for the freedom of Kosova.

23 Yesterday I told you that the apartment block where I lived had

24 both Albanians and Serbs as residents. When I returned to Pristina in

25 1999, I went to my apartment. I visited my father. And having seen the

Page 6067

1 developments, the euphoria, people who had left and coming back and all

2 this, I went to my apartment and I went to the apartment of the Serb

3 living below me. I told him not to leave. I told him that we do not have

4 the means to defend all those who are in Kosova, but I can do this much to

5 defend you who are here, near me. I asked him to stay with us, and I told

6 him that anything that befalls on my family will befall on him, that he

7 would be protected. But he said to me that in those circumstances there

8 was no perspective for him, that he could not stay locked in the

9 apartment. And it was true because I could not guarantee what would

10 happen to him if he walks outside his apartment. Those were the

11 circumstances at that time.

12 His apartment was not touched. I don't know what happened,

13 whether he sold it or whether he rented it himself, but this is just an

14 illustration. At that time, this was the only thing you could do. You

15 couldn't do much.

16 Q. Now, I want to move, finally, therefore, to February, 2003. Again

17 there is --

18 MR. MANSFIELD: Is Your Honour intending to rise at quarter to

19 6.00? I was anticipating that might be the break. I can do this subject

20 in that time, I think.

21 JUDGE PARKER: Carry on, Mr. Mansfield.

22 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes, thank you very much.

23 Q. The -- I think there's no issue that you were on holiday. I want

24 to just ask you about this.

25 Did you go on a short break in February 2003?

Page 6068

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Where did you go?

3 A. After a very difficult week in the parliament, at that time I was

4 a member of parliament. We decided together with the president of the

5 party to have a short rest in Slovenia. I went to a skiing centre in

6 Kranjska Gora in Slovenia.

7 Q. Do you remember the day on which you went, the date -- the date

8 and the day?

9 A. It should be 15th of February. It was Saturday when I left

10 Pristina. Yes, it must be 15th of February. It was Saturday when we left

11 Pristina airport in the afternoon.

12 Q. Did your family and the authorities know you were leaving?

13 A. Of course that my family knew. I even know that on Friday

14 evening, when we discussed the trip to Slovene, we also spoke with the

15 prime minister at that time, Mr. Bajram Rexhepi, and invited him to join

16 us for the holiday. So the family knew, the entire staff of the democrat

17 party knew. They all knew that they were going to Slovenia. And after

18 all, they knew that we were the leadership of the party and I was in the

19 company of the president of the party. And they all knew that this was

20 not a secret trip. They knew that we were going on a holiday.

21 In short, this was something normal, something that they were

22 aware of.

23 Q. I'm not sure whether you can answer the next question, but did --

24 are you aware or not as to whether the general in charge of KFOR, General

25 Fabio Mini, also knew that you were going?

Page 6069

1 A. I wouldn't speculate, but if the general was acquainted about the

2 investigations and about the indictment, he surely was aware of my

3 whereabouts. When I left, everything was done in regular basis,

4 officially. The passports were checked in a regular way, as the VIP

5 passports are checked, but I suppose that if the general had the

6 information, he of course knew about our whereabouts. But personally I

7 don't know about this.

8 Q. All right. So you leave on Saturday, the 15th. When is it that

9 you first get some wind or knowledge of the fact that people are being

10 arrested or wanted at The Hague? When do you first get some hint of that?

11 A. Arrests were very common in Kosova at that time, for different

12 reasons. If someone is arrested as a result of an indictment issued by

13 The Hague -- I heard about this on Monday while I was on holiday - if I'm

14 not wrong, it was Monday evening - and I heard it from journalists who

15 actually called me to take a statement regarding the new developments in

16 the country. They told me that two or three persons were arrested, and he

17 asked me about the party's opinion on this. So this was it. Then later I

18 heard from friends. I called some friends from the party, and this is it.

19 Q. Now -- first, there are a couple of questions arising out of that

20 First of all, how did the journalists contact you?

21 A. The political spokesperson is the one who establishes contacts

22 with the journalists, in order to make the stance of his party known to

23 the public. So the spokesperson lives on the journalist and the

24 journalist lives on the spokesperson. So in order to -- for this to

25 function, you have to have a good relationship with the journalists. All

Page 6070

1 of the journalists in Kosova and journalists from other agencies as well

2 had my phone number. Even the agencies of Serbia, televisions and media,

3 they had business card. My phone number was a public knowledge to all

4 those who had in their hands my business card.

5 Q. Now, the other matter is: Were there the names of the two or

6 three persons arrested given to you at that time?

7 A. No. In Kosova, usually activities are not that transparent.

8 Maybe this was a nature as far as The Hague activity was concerned, but

9 even in Kosova you cannot find out the names of the arrested persons

10 immediately. The journalists, as they always say, according to anonymous

11 sources in UNMIK, they said that these arrested were ordered by the

12 Prosecution in The Hague, and they wanted a statement regarding these

13 developments. I didn't know who the arrested persons were.

14 Q. When did you --

15 A. I found it out when the names were made public.

16 Q. Yes, sorry.

17 When did you discover that in fact you were wanted by the

18 authorities?

19 A. If you want me to describe the entire event, I will tell you that

20 when I heard that my name was mentioned in the indictment and that I was

21 wanted by the Tribunal, I was in a ski-lift. It was around 2.30 or 3.00.

22 A journalist called me, a journalist from Reuters called Shaban Buza. And

23 he said to me, Have you heard what had happened? I said, No. He tried

24 not to touch upon this directly, but when he saw that I had no idea of

25 what he was saying, he then asked me directly. He said that -- so he

Page 6071

1 informed me, not asked me, that Madam del Ponte had given a statement in

2 Podgorica at a press conversation half an hour ago, and she had mentioned

3 your name as one of the accused.

4 Then I said to him, Let me get down first and call me back later

5 in order to read to me the entire statement given by Madam del Ponte.

6 So I got off the ski-lift. He read the entire statement, the

7 press conference statement, and I went to the hotel. I think he was the

8 first journalist who received this information, because he was a

9 journalist of Reuters, and he was the first one to receive the information

10 before the local media received it. And then all journalists began to

11 call me as soon as the news spread in Kosova. Family members called me,

12 friends called me. I couldn't respond to all their calls; it was

13 impossible. I just informed them -- I informed the president of the

14 party, Mr. Thaqi, about the information that we received. We went to the

15 hotel. We contacted the councillor to the prime minister, Mr. Ramadan

16 Ardin, because the prime minister was not available at the time. He must

17 have been on a meeting somewhere. And I said to Ramadan -- I told him to

18 inform the prime minister about this and to -- for the prime minister to

19 consult Mr. Steiner what to do. I wanted personally to return to Kosova

20 and to travel from Kosova to The Hague. However, this was to be arranged

21 by Mr. Steiner, if he was in a position to arrange such a thing.

22 So Ramadan told me that he was going to discuss this with the

23 prime minister, and the prime minister, together with Mr. Krasniqi, a

24 delegation, a small delegation of the party went to meet Mr. Steiner. I

25 don't know when this meeting was held exactly. I was waiting for their

Page 6072

1 response. And while I was waiting, journalists from different media began

2 to call me on the phone. And as it is always with journalists, first

3 thing they want to know is where you are, so that they would be able to

4 contact me directly. My response to them was that I was outside Kosovo.

5 To some I said I was in Austria. To some I didn't tell them at all where

6 I was, and the reason was simple because I had experience with

7 journalists. And I know that in discussions with journalists I could harm

8 myself in respect to what the result of the meeting with Mr. Steiner was

9 going to be. I was sure that if I told them the location where I was, the

10 hotel would be filled up with journalists in five minutes.

11 Therefore, in order to give space to the meeting in Pristina, I

12 didn't tell the journalists the exact location. To some I said that I was

13 at home, busy with a family; to some, I said that I was in Austria, in

14 Italy. I don't know even know myself what I told them exactly, but I know

15 that I didn't tell them the exact place.

16 Q. You mentioned there Mr. Steiner. Could you indicate who he was?

17 A. Mr. Steiner at that time was the head of UNMIK at that time. The

18 UN mission to Kosova. He was number one for Kosova at that time. He was

19 president of Kosova. You can call him whatever you like. He was number

20 one and had the authority in Kosova at that time.

21 Q. And was it made known to him exactly where you were?

22 A. There was no reason for not making it known to him because the

23 prime minister of Kosova with a delegation had gone to him to inform him.

24 I wasn't worried what was going to happen, whether I was going back to

25 Kosova or not. I was worried that what might happen -- I didn't want

Page 6073

1 Mr. Steiner or the delegation to worry about any reaction by the

2 population. If justice called me, I was ready to respond to that justice.

3 So this was my concern, and I wanted to be given the opportunity

4 to address the citizens, that this was something that was made public by

5 the Prosecution; and whether they were right or wrong, this was something

6 to be proved. I didn't want them to dramatise the situation. They were

7 not in a very suitable situation. They didn't know the reaction of my

8 sympathisers. And that's why I wanted the prime minister to go with a

9 clear idea to Mr. Steiner, that -- to tell him that Mr. Limaj is aware of

10 the indictment against him, he is in Slovenia now, today, and he asks you

11 if you can to arrange his return to Kosova without any interruption by the

12 Serbian -- correction, Slovenian authorities.

13 I forgot to tell you, after I heard about the indictment, I asked

14 from an Albanian in Slovenia who was with me, I asked her to ask if there

15 was a plane flying to Pristina on the same night, but there wasn't any

16 flight for Pristina because there are only flights two or three times a

17 week between Pristina and Ljubljana.

18 A. So Mr. Steiner, of course he knew I was in Slovenia because what

19 was discussed was whether he was in position to find a charter flight from

20 Ljubljana to Pristina, and then from me to go from Pristina to The Hague.

21 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Mansfield, our tapes are about to run out.

22 MR. MANSFIELD: Yes. I have only one question, but I can save

23 it. It was: Did you remain where you were and were you arrested in the

24 hotel. That was it.

25 JUDGE PARKER: You've asked it; he can answer.

Page 6074

1 MR. MANSFIELD: I think the answer is yes; it's one of the few

2 leading questions I think -- the only -- well, not the only.

3 Your Honour, I'm sorry we have overrun a bit.

4 JUDGE PARKER: Is your answer question, Mr. Limaj, to those

5 questions, you were detained where you were --

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours.

7 JUDGE PARKER: [Previous translation continues ...]

8 THE WITNESS: [In English] In a hotel, yes.

9 JUDGE PARKER: Very well.

10 We will adjourn and resume in 20 minutes.

11 --- Recess taken at 5.51 p.m.

12 --- On resuming at 6.13 p.m.

13 JUDGE PARKER: I take it your examination has concluded,

14 Mr. Mansfield.

15 MR. MANSFIELD: Thank you, Your Honour. Yes, it has.

16 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Mr. Guy-Smith.

17 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you very much. I have no questions.

18 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you Mr. Guy-Smith.

19 Mr. Topolski.

20 Cross-examined by Mr. Topolski:

21 Q. Mr. Limaj, we have some of your questions for you. We have

22 noticed that some of your answers have been long ones. I hope that the

23 few short questions that I have for you will be able to generate short

24 answers and I hope very much that what I have for you will be finished

25 before we rise for this evening.

Page 6075

1 I'm going to take matters in chronological order. Your first

2 meeting with Isak Musliu took place in Likovc, did it not, sometime in

3 April of 1998?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. You had never met him before that?

6 A. No, never. Even that day, on the trip from Likovc, I remember he

7 was silent, unlike Luan who likes to talk like me.

8 Q. Touche.

9 Can I move from April into May, please, Mr. Limaj. The 9th of May

10 in particular saw the moment you described to us when Lapusnik came under

11 attack; is that correct?

12 A. Yes, that's correct.

13 Q. I want to be clear about it, because you described four friends

14 going to the Berisa mountains to secure a better view of what was going

15 on. Do you remember putting it that way when you were answering Mr.

16 Mansfield's questions yesterday?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. One of those friends was Isak Musliu, wasn't it?

19 A. Yes, it was.

20 Q. Can you help us with the names of the other people who made up

21 that small group?

22 A. Of course. In addition to Isak, there was my nephew, Sadik

23 Shala who was a martyr to the nation. There was the cousin to Sadik, his

24 uncle's son, Nexhmaj Shala [phoen], Isak, and someone by the name of Bart

25 [phoen]. I don't remember his last name. He is from Drenoc village.

Page 6076

1 There was a Sadik Shala, my other nephew. We were altogether six people.

2 Sadik was stopped at Berisa with his radio. The five of us continued on

3 the trip to Lapusnik.

4 Q. Thank you. Again I want to be absolutely clear about it, if you

5 can help, please, Mr. Limaj. This was, was it not, a collective decision

6 to go and help the villagers of Lapusnik? You nor anyone else in your

7 small group, I suggest, which included my client, were acting under

8 anyone's orders or directions; you simply decided as a group to go and see

9 what you could do to help. Do you accept that?

10 A. Yes, it was precisely as I put it. We went out to see what was

11 happening. When we saw what was occurring we decided to go on the spot.

12 Q. Can I deal before I move into June with one matter, as it were on

13 the way, and that is the choice of nom de guerre, pseudonym. We've had

14 evidence from Prosecution witnesses, and I'd like it from you, if you can

15 help us, who indicate that there was a clear self-protective purpose in

16 using pseudonyms, protecting your own identity and protecting the identity

17 of your families. Is that how you saw the purpose of the pseudonym, Mr.

18 Limaj?

19 A. From the way I described it, it was because of conspiracy. I

20 think you can find the answer in that. Apart from providing security to

21 ourselves and to our families it was for the purposes of not being known

22 and identified. Of course we served the security of our families and

23 ourselves.

24 Q. I want to move, then, for a moment or two into the month of June

25 of 1998.

Page 6077

1 Yesterday you told us - and the reference in the unrevised

2 transcript line if Mr. Whiting wishes it, is page 47, beginning at

3 line 2 - you told us, Mr. Limaj, if you recall, professional soldiers, or

4 former soldiers, a group of three or five of them who came from abroad and

5 joined the KLA. Do you remember telling Mr. Mansfield about that

6 yesterday?

7 A. Yes, I do.

8 Q. You said that they'd come, as it were, via the General Staff and

9 were observing the terrain and, as you put it, in line 8 of that

10 page "every unit." I want to deal, if I may, please, with a visit those

11 gentlemen took to Lapusnik. Mr. Limaj, you may not be able to help us

12 because you simply may not be able to recall, but there was an occasion

13 when those officers, two of them perhaps - maybe three - with you, went to

14 Lapusnik in your company and met Isak Musliu. Do you recall this?

15 A. I think I said yesterday they came in the course of their trip to

16 visit all the units. Lapusnik was an important point. I should say that

17 it was -- in itself it was a special, symbolic, if I might say so

18 because. Lapusnik was the place where the KLA was concentrated so

19 everything liked to go there and visit the units. Some people might

20 pretend today that they weren't there, they never visited the place. But

21 at that time it was considered a treat to go there, in a way.

22 So they visited the units there, in Lapusnik, on the orders -- on

23 the instructions of General Staff to see how the situation was and

24 precisely where -- in the position where Isak was these two officers

25 passed by. They looked at the position, they saw what kind of armaments

Page 6078

1 the soldiers had. The visited last 15 or 20 minutes.

2 Q. Yes. Well, thank you. I was precisely going to suggest upon my

3 instructions exactly that: a visit of about 15 or 20 minutes.

4 And as far as Isak Musliu is concerns, Mr. Limaj, I may this

5 suggestion to you: There was not any other occasion that he recollects

6 through me when such a visit occurred subsequently. Are you aware of any

7 other occasion when those same military officers visited Lapusnik and met

8 with Musliu?

9 A. This happened at the end of June, what I just said. Byslym Zyropi

10 as an officer that we knew when he came at the end of June, he began to

11 visit all of the points. He passed through dangers, sides to Kajxhin

12 [phoen], Suva Reka, Shale. He didn't go back to that point, and I don't

13 where know the August offensive found him. Agim was killed immediately,

14 after a week in Rahovec so...

15 Q. Can I in fact come on to Rahovec, Mr. Limaj, please and we move

16 therefore move chronologically into July.

17 A. [No interpretation]

18 Q. Yesterday at transcript page 69, to be exact, you said: "Rahovec

19 mirrors the way the KLA was organised at that time."

20 Mr. Limaj, may I make an alternative suggestion as to a rephrasing

21 of your evidence: Rahovec mirrors the way the KLA was disorganised at

22 that time. Do you accept that as a proposition?

23 A. No. No, I would put it differently. Rahovec shows that the KLA

24 was still a long way from being -- from being responsive to the new

25 reality. It had remained still under total confusion, a guerrilla unit.

Page 6079

1 Because to disorganised first you have to be organised, I think. But it

2 was not organised to be disorganised. I don't know if I made myself

3 clear. Maybe I am putting it in the same way you put it to me, but in

4 different words.

5 Q. Well, it's for the Chamber to reach those decisions, Mr. Limaj,

6 but I think the flavour of what I'm suggesting to you has come over in

7 your answer.

8 There is one particularly important matter I want to deal with

9 regarding Rahovec, if I may, and that is something that you did not

10 mention yesterday and again I want to see if you agree. That on the 19th

11 of July - I can't put a time on the day, I'm afraid - you met Isak Musliu

12 there, or thereabouts and you were with Byslym Zyropi. Now, you don't

13 mention Musliu yesterday when Mr. Mansfield was asking you about this. I

14 am positively suggesting to that you Musliu was there and you met with him

15 and indeed discussed or he was part of a discussion, regarding the

16 tactical decisions that needed to be made.

17 So let me break that long question up. First of all, do you agree

18 he was there?

19 A. To tell you the truth I didn't mention his name because I

20 concentrated on describing the representatives of the General Staff.

21 That's why I have forgotten to mention his name. I wanted to point out

22 the fact that the decision was made by the -- the people who came from the

23 General Staff didn't know that. But it is true that Isak was there. But

24 for me it was not an important thing to mention it.

25 Q. It was -- he won't mind me mentioning this on his behalf. He was

Page 6080












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 6081

1 not a significant a figure militarily such as others such as Mr. Zyropi

2 and other members of the General Staff. That's a fair description, is it

3 not, Mr. Limaj?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Indeed, he wasn't alone, was he in, as it were, being from a

6 series of volunteers who responded to urgent radio request for assistance

7 to come to Rahovec. Others answered the same call, did they not?

8 A. Your Honours, on the 18th and 19th there were no units, no

9 soldiers from Drenice, from Dukagjine, from Malisheve, they came.

10 Hundreds of people came to Rahovec to help. There was total confusion so

11 everybody wanted to give a hand. They came from all sides, groups of

12 soldiers. And in that situation you couldn't tell who was coming from

13 where and what was doing and in that situation my nephew got killed,

14 Sadik. He thought that I was injured and he entered on one side and he

15 got killed.

16 Q. I don't suppose you could assist, Mr. Limaj, can you - you would

17 have had other things on your mind to deal with - as to how long Isak

18 Musliu may have spent in that area in the days following the 19th. Can

19 you assist at all?

20 A. On the 19th, after I had that -- suffered that shock, and was

21 taken to the hospital, I don't know what happened afterwards. Because the

22 news spread out, Your Honours, to Malisheve that someone was injured and

23 someone was killed and that -- I know that after my stay in hospital for

24 some hours when I regained consciousness, I tried to go home to -- because

25 I knew that the news about my death was -- had reached my family. I

Page 6082

1 wanted them to know that I was still alive. So the news was spread all

2 over Malisheve because they had seen me lying down in the car. And I went

3 to Banje, stayed my family -- then went back to Klecke to rest.

4 But I may tell you that on the 19th and 20th and 21st, Isak was

5 not in Rahovec but between Rahovec and Malisheve. Because at that time

6 the Serbian forces had taken Rahovec and we were thinking what to do to

7 prevent them from enters Malisheve, because they thought that the Serb

8 offensive would continue in the direction of Malisheve. So we wanted to

9 block the way and this is where I saw Isak.

10 Q. Thank you for that. I was going to actually suggest to you that

11 subsequent to the 19th Isak and others position themselves on a small hill

12 near Rahovec and stayed in or about that position for the following four

13 and a half days or so.

14 Now, I don't suppose you can be that precise. But the essence of

15 what I think you just said appears to accept that he was in that area for

16 several days following the 19th. Did you agree?

17 A. Yes, I think I said it. After the 19th. Because on the 19th

18 Rahovec was in chaos. In the evening of the 17th, 18th, the Serbian

19 forces had entered. So the soldiers left Rahovec and took positions

20 between Rahovec and Malisheve.

21 On the 22nd, 23rd, all of them stayed along that line thinking

22 that the Serbian troops would continue towards Malisheve. They wanted to

23 protect the hundreds and thousands of civilians behind their back. They

24 wanted to bar the way to the Serbs to continue towards Malisheve. There

25 were many soldiers there. The members of the General Staff, Rexhep

Page 6083

1 Selimi, Hashim Thaqi all of them were there with the soldiers during these

2 days, from the 19th to the 23rd, between Rahovec and Malisheve, to

3 coordinate activities and to prevent the entry of the Serbian troops. Not

4 to suffer a new defeat. Because we were worried about the civilians.

5 Q. Yes, I follow. I want to break off the chronology and, as it

6 were, insert something else here for a moment, Mr. Limaj. The nom de

7 guerre, the pseudonym that Isak Musliu had by then was Qerqizi, was it

8 not?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Are you aware of how it was that he was given that name, by, I

11 suggest, Ismet Jashari? Are you aware? Just yes or no.

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. My suggestion is that he looked like the famous national hero

14 Qerqizi Topulli. Is that right, Mr. Limaj, or is it some other reason?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Qerqizi Topulli was famous for many things, including his beard,

17 Mr. Limaj. He was a bearded figure in history, wasn't he? Do you

18 remember?

19 A. Yes, that's true. That was his particularity.

20 Q. Isak Musliu, Mr. Limaj, in the time we have just been dealing with

21 was the wearer of a significant beard, wasn't he? Do you remember?

22 A. Yes, yes.

23 Q. Can we move on from Rahovec back to Lapusnik, because you have

24 told Their Honours that you were hurt, injured, ill. I think you have

25 used those words. I want to ask you to just turn to your left to look -

Page 6084

1 and I'm grateful, for the usher has pinned DM3 to the wall. I hope

2 it might be a convenient way of doing it.

3 Mr. Limaj, on the evening of the 25th of July you were, I suggest,

4 in the Sopi neighbourhood of the village of Lapusnik receiving medical

5 treatment and in particular, I suggest, you were lying down with an IV

6 drip in your arm, an intravenous drip.

7 Now again, I will break it up. First of all, do you accept that

8 on the 25th of July you were back in Lapusnik?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. You may not know the district or the village that you were in.

11 I'm going to ask -- see if we can identify it in a minute. Do you know

12 the district, name of the village or the district that you were in or not?

13 A. No, I didn't know. Because I had lost consciousness. I didn't

14 know exactly to which house they took me.

15 Q. An IV drip suggests that there may have been some medical

16 intervention at the time. Were you being treated by a doctor or a nurse

17 or what?

18 A. For me it was quite a haze. I thought that Dr. Zeqaj [phoen] was

19 the one, but Ferat Sopi was serving too as an assistant or nurse, as well

20 as two other nurses. I thought that Zeqaj was a doctor. I don't know.

21 Q. Now would you mind looking to your left you will see a number --

22 MR. WHITING: Perhaps it could be put on the ELMO.

23 MR. TOPOLSKI: Yes, it would be easier because Mr. Whiting can't

24 see it from there. Yes, forgive me.

25 Thank you very much.

Page 6085

1 Q. Mr. Limaj, you will he recollect that during the Prosecution case

2 a Prosecution witness provided us with this piece of material. Could I

3 draw your attention to first of all the five positions of the Celiku 3

4 unit that Mr. Mansfield was talking to you about yesterday, I think. And

5 then when you come down to position number 4, if you just move, as it

6 were, towards the centre of the photograph. You will see a label that has

7 a Q against it.

8 MR. TOPOLSKI: I don't how distinct it is on Your Honours'

9 screens. It is incredibly indistinct on mine.

10 Your Honours, against the fourth label down --

11 Q. Well, in fact what we can do, Mr. Limaj, is I can locate the grid.

12 Can you see what I am talking about? Can you identify the grid, please.

13 You'll see grid numbers at the top or letters at the top and numbers down

14 the side.

15 A. Yes, number 4.

16 Q. [Previous translation continues...] is it in?

17 A. C4.

18 Q. C4. I'm grateful.

19 Now, I know it's difficult from aerial photographs, and I'm sure

20 everyone understands the difficulty. What I've put to a previous witness

21 was that was one of the bases, houses, in that area there where Musliu was

22 based for a while. Mr. Limaj, what I'm going to suggest to you is: That

23 that is the area of the village where you may well have been and the

24 town - and I put it deliberately carefully like that - on the night of the

25 25th because I'm going to suggest to you that Isak Musliu saw you with the

Page 6086

1 IV drip in your arm, and I'll put it compendiumly [sic] and then you deal

2 with it in bits. You told us yesterday, transcript page 62, that 8.00 in

3 the evening of the 25th [sic] you were told of the death of Ymer Alushani

4 or thereabouts.

5 Now, I'll break it up. First of all, that area of the village,

6 could that be where you were or can't you help us?

7 A. I want to say that we were intent on going to the front line, but

8 because of the insistent shelling by the Serbs it was very difficult

9 indeed to penetrate into the military positions. In a meadow somewhere

10 here, I had that loss of consciousness that I mentioned, and two or three

11 soldiers of course took me to a nearby home. And those soldiers know

12 better than me when I stayed. It was -- fighting was going on; there was

13 an offensive. In the evening when it became dark they took me away from

14 that place. It is possible. But for me, as I said, it's all a haze.

15 MR. WHITING: Excuse me. I think counsel may have misspoken. I

16 think that the evidence, as I read it from page 62, is that it's 8.00 in

17 the evening on the 26th.

18 MR. TOPOLSKI: Yes, sorry. Oh, is it? Yes, I see what

19 Mr. Whiting says. Yes.

20 Q. 26th, Mr. Limaj, 8.00 you told us yesterday Isak came round. Is

21 it your recollection that Isak Musliu was the one who told you that Ymer

22 Alushani had been killed?

23 A. I heard some voices. Nobody knew what was going on. Some

24 soldiers were speaking, but I heard from him what had happened because he

25 had seen with his own eyes what had happened and he was describing the

Page 6087

1 event.

2 Q. Well, thank you for that.

3 MR. TOPOLSKI: We don't need the ELMO any more. Thank you. I'm

4 grateful.

5 Q. I can move on, Mr. Limaj, in the 15 minutes or so that's left.

6 I'm confident --

7 MR. WHITING: I'm sorry to rise again. I'm sorry. Is -- was that

8 an exhibit that was shown to him?


10 MR. WHITING: DM3. Okay. I wasn't sure that was clear. Thank

11 you.

12 MR. TOPOLSKI: DM03, I think.

13 Q. Can I move on, please, into August.

14 Again today you described in some detail the formation of the

15 121st Brigade, and you put it, if I'm accurately noting what you said, on

16 or about the 6th of August that there was a meeting of a number of

17 commanders at which you said, and I accept, Isak Musliu was present.

18 Now do you remember those answers to Mr. Mansfield a little

19 earlier on today, in fact, the very beginning of today?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Can I just put a little flesh on that bone, please, Mr. Limaj, and

22 ask you this: Do you accept that this meeting took place in a house in

23 Klecka?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. And I can be quite detailed about this. It began at approximately

Page 6088

1 10.00 in the evening; do you agree?

2 A. Yes. Yes, at my base in Klecka.

3 Q. We've seen a video footage of that base today?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. And on the agenda, not surprisingly, I suggest, given the

6 circumstances, was the position of the civilian population; do you agree

7 with that?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. And the meeting quickly turned, did it not, to discussions

10 regarding the next steps, as it were, which led quickly to discussions

11 regarding the formation of brigades. Do you agree with that as a

12 description of how the meeting went?

13 A. Yes, yes.

14 Q. The meeting broke up some hours later with quite a finale, I

15 suggest, Mr. Limaj - I put this to someone else who couldn't quite

16 remember, so let's see if you can. Three mortar rounds landed near the

17 house towards the end of the meeting. Do you remember that?

18 You smile. Do you remember that?

19 A. Of course. I forgot to mention many things here, but of course I

20 remember that we had to stop this meeting because of the shelling. As I

21 said earlier, there was uninterrupted shelling of Klecka, but this one was

22 very near the base and we were forced to stop the meeting and leave.

23 Q. Thank you. Again, may I just add a little detail to the battalion

24 formation because it's right, isn't it, as you told us this afternoon that

25 Isak Musliu, as it were, found himself promoted that night from whatever

Page 6089

1 he was as that night to -- subsequently to become a deputy brigade

2 commander. That's right, isn't it?

3 A. That's correct.

4 Q. And your other deputy because Ismet Jashari; correct?

5 A. Ismet Jashari, correct.

6 Q. Then for completeness's sake, Mr. Limaj, there were four

7 battalions, were there not, formed to be part of the 121st Brigade, and

8 I'm going to name them in a moment. But, first of all, do you agree with

9 the figure, four?

10 A. The number of battalions was a process. It wasn't decided on

11 this point because the units had to be integrated.

12 Q. Yes. You're quite right, forgive me. I didn't want to suggest

13 that these battalions were formed that night. But in due course, what we

14 saw developing in this post-first-week-of-August period, between now, I

15 suggest, and the autumn of 1998 were the Ymer Alushani Battalion based on

16 the Berisa Mountainside; do you agree?

17 A. Yes. If you want me, I can even tell you what the boundary was

18 that we agreed on.

19 Q. If Mr. Whiting wants to ask you about that, he can; I don't,

20 Mr. Limaj, but thank you for the offer.

21 The Ruzhdi Salihu Battalion on the Kroimire side led by Ramiz

22 Qeriqi, a witness from whom we've heard in this case. Do you agree with

23 that?

24 A. Yes, Ramiz Qeriqi.

25 Q. The Sadik Shala Battalion under the command of Ismet Jashari?

Page 6090

1 A. That's true.

2 Q. And finally the Ymer Kastrati Battalion led by Skender Hoti. Do

3 you agree with that?

4 A. It's not Ymer Kastrati; it's Afrim Krasniqi, the battalion which

5 was led by Skender Hoti.

6 Q. Thank you very much.

7 I move on then finally, Mr. Limaj, to deal with the last aspect I

8 want to deal with and that is the military police.

9 You tell Mr. Mansfield and us earlier that in 1999 when you had

10 become a member of the General Staff, you were appointed chief of the

11 military police prior to, as I understand your evidence, your appointment

12 as Deputy Minister of Defence. Have I understood your evidence correctly?

13 A. I need to explain myself here. In a way, no, because, Your

14 Honours, at that time we had received the organisational chart by NATO.

15 One of these departments was the military police. I was appointed by the

16 General Staff general chief of the military police in December of 1998, at

17 the beginning of December.

18 Q. Isak Musliu became an important figure in the military police

19 himself, did he not, in 1999?

20 A. Well, every zone later on became to be built-up. We began to

21 unify the way the zones were structured, as it was foreseen with the

22 organisational chart. So the zone had its commander and the commander of

23 the military police, who was under the orders of the commander of the

24 operational zone. So with the proposal of the commander of the Nerodime

25 Operational Zone, Mr. Shukri Buja, he was then appointed commander of the

Page 6091

1 military police for the Nerodime Operational Zone.

2 Q. Yes, exactly. Thank you very much.

3 I showed a number of witnesses during the course of the trial,

4 Mr. Limaj, I'm sure you recollect, a photograph of a number of people

5 wearing black uniforms with the PU insignia. Do you remember the

6 photograph? I can show you again, but I don't think we need to see it.

7 You recall? The suggestion I make, Mr. Limaj, is this, and I ask you it

8 in your given capacity as chief of the military police at the time -- the

9 suggestion I make is this: Did those uniforms, those black uniforms with

10 those insignia, did not emerge to be seen by the public, as it were, in

11 Kosova until the back end of 1998 at the earliest.

12 Now do you agree with that?

13 A. From the pictures you have shown, it's different, but I can

14 explain how it looked, the military police, because I was directly

15 involved. It was a task of the directorate. Your Honours, after August

16 the military police had started to operate and had started to be different

17 from zone to zone. They were made different by their uniforms, by the

18 insignia, even by the tasks that they exercised in their respective

19 zones. So as chief of military police, I asked as an immediate, urgent,

20 issue to be treated before the General Staff to establish a unified

21 uniform for the military police so that all the military police units in

22 every zone had the same uniform, a unified insignia, and to have ID cards.

23 These were the three proposals that I made, and these proposals

24 were to be carried out by the directorate, because that was the duty of

25 the directorate, to contact the commanders of the zones, because every

Page 6092

1 zone had organised themselves in their own way and to their own means.

2 The first thing that we did -- on the market you could find

3 leather jackets from Turkey that were brought there by tradesmen. They

4 were short jackets, and jeans, black jeans, which were produced in Kosova,

5 tailored by Kosovar tailors. So we combined them and formed this

6 uniform. And every military police was obliged to wear this leather

7 jacket and these black jeans. And we took the sign for the military

8 police according to the sign that the NATO military police was using, the

9 same design.

10 Q. Two things very quickly, Mr. Limaj, if you wouldn't mind.

11 First of all, in what month of the year of 1998, if I have the

12 right year, would one have first seen these uniforms that you just

13 described on the streets, as it were? What month?

14 A. This could have happened, first of all, for the soldiers in

15 Pastrik Operational Zone sometime in the second half of December of 1998,

16 and then it continued with other zones in January and after January.

17 Q. I can't remember the witness's name now for the life of me, but we

18 have seen a photograph of a Prosecution witness with a gun in his hand and

19 a bandolero across his chest, wearing -- not an entirely black, but a

20 partly black uniform -- it may be Mr. Karpuzi, I'm not sure -- yes,

21 Mr. Karpuzi, that's right.

22 Did people wear black uniforms, partially black or wholly black in

23 the earlier parts of 1998, Mr. Limaj?

24 A. If you mean soldiers, this happened mostly after the 29th of May,

25 when Malisheve was a free territory, and in lack of uniforms people wanted

Page 6093

1 to get themselves singled out to be known as being members of the KLA.

2 And in order to be distinct from citizens, they designed clothes that

3 resembled uniforms. The easiest way to do this was to buy a shirt and

4 pair of trousers because you could not wear white shirts and trousers,

5 that was not practical; that's why they bought dark-coloured,

6 black-coloured shirts and trousers. You could find soldiers dressed in

7 this way in all the area, those who didn't have actual uniforms.

8 Q. Thank you for your help and your patience, Mr. Limaj. That's all

9 I ask you.

10 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Topolski, and that seems a

11 convenient time.

12 We will -- as counsel will be aware, tomorrow is a day when we are

13 unable to sit because of a need to do technical maintenance in the

14 courtroom, so we will resume on Monday at 2.15 and we must therefore

15 adjourn now until Monday.

16 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.58 p.m.,

17 to be reconvened on Monday, the 23rd of May, 2005, at

18 2.15 p.m.