International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Case No IT-97-24
Initial appearance: (Open Session)

  1. 1 Wednesday, 30th July 1997.

    2 (4.45 pm)

    3 JUDGE NINIAN STEPHEN: We have an initial apology, we had

    4 to delay somewhat the hearing of this case to provide

    5 for the necessary adjustments to the television link.

    6 Call the afternoon case.

    7 THE REGISTRAR: Case number 97-24-I, the Prosecutor v Milan

    8 Kovacevic.

    9 JUDGE NINIAN STEPHEN: Can every one who is using the

    10 earphones hear me in a language that they understand?

    11 The accused should put his earphones on. Can you now

    12 hear me in a language you understand?

    13 THE DEFENDANT: Yes.

    14 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you. These proceedings are being

    15 recorded in accordance with the Rules of the Tribunal,

    16 and that will be available to the public, and I have so

    17 ordered in an Order that I made this morning.

    18 Can I have the initial appearances?

    19 MR. NIEMANN: Your Honours, please, my name is Niemann.

    20 I appear with Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff as my co-counsel and

    21 I am assisted at the bar table by Ms. Sutherland.

    22 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you, Mr. Niemann.

    23 MR. PANTELIC: Your Honour, I am Igor Pantelic and I am

    24 counsel for Mr. Kovacevic. I am acting on his behalf.

    25 For a moment I am alone. I do not have co-counsel, as

  2. 1 with my colleague.

    2 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you. This is an initial appearance

    3 pursuant to Rule 62 of the Tribunal's Rules of Procedure

    4 and Evidence. Mr. Niemann, are you ready to proceed with

    5 the accused's plea at this initial appearance?

    6 MR. NIEMANN: Thank you, your Honour. The Prosecution is

    7 ready to proceed. Before your Honour proceeds with the

    8 indictment, might I draw the court's attention to a

    9 typographical error that appears in the indictment?

    10 Your Honours, at page 5 of the indictment, paragraph 7,

    11 the last line of the paragraph there is a reference

    12 there to paragraph 5. In fact that should be a

    13 reference to paragraph 4. It is a typographical error.

    14 I draw it to the court's attention and seek leave for

    15 the indictment to be amended accordingly your Honour.

    16 JUDGE STEPHEN: You wish to have that typographical error

    17 amended?

    18 MR. NIEMANN: If it please the court.

    19 JUDGE STEPHEN: Mr Pantelic do you have any objection to

    20 that?

    21 MR. PANTELIC: No your Honour, I have none.

    22 JUDGE STEPHEN: Very well. That will be noted by way of

    23 amendment of a typographical error.

    24 MR. NIEMANN: If it please the court.

    25 JUDGE STEPHEN: Mr. Pantelic, you have, I take it, received

  3. 1 a copy of the indictment?

    2 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, your Honour.

    3 JUDGE STEPHEN: Have you read it or had it read to your

    4 client?

    5 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, your Honour, that is right.

    6 JUDGE STEPHEN: Are you satisfied he understands it?

    7 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, I am satisfied.

    8 JUDGE STEPHEN: You have had adequate time to confer with

    9 your client?

    10 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, I have enough time but unfortunately my

    11 client was not in situation -- he was not in the

    12 capacity to communicate with me fully in quality,

    13 because of his health condition.

    14 JUDGE STEPHEN: Yes.

    15 MR. PANTELIC: But generally we are ready for initial

    16 appearance.

    17 JUDGE STEPHEN: Very well. Your client, I take it,

    18 understands the nature of the charge of genocide brought

    19 under Article 4 of the Statute?

    20 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, that is my -- I know your Honour you

    21 have to ask him personally first.

    22 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you.

    23 MR. PANTELIC: You are welcome.

    24 JUDGE STEPHEN: Mr. Kovacevic, would you stand, please?

    25 Would you state your full name.

  4. 1 THE DEFENDANT: My name is Milan Kovacevic.

    2 JUDGE STEPHEN: And your date of birth?

    3 THE DEFENDANT: 10th February, 1941.

    4 JUDGE STEPHEN: And did you get a copy of the indictment

    5 served on you?

    6 THE DEFENDANT: Yes, I did.

    7 JUDGE STEPHEN: And you either read it yourself or had it

    8 read to you in a language that you understand?

    9 THE DEFENDANT: I have read it myself.

    10 JUDGE STEPHEN: And, Mr. Pantelic has been appointed your

    11 counsel. Are you satisfied with that appointment?

    12 THE DEFENDANT: Yes, I am.

    13 JUDGE STEPHEN: And, as a result of discussions with your

    14 counsel, do you understand the nature of the charge of

    15 genocide that has been brought against you?

    16 THE DEFENDANT: Yes, I do understand. I understand the

    17 nature of the charge.

    18 JUDGE STEPHEN: And are you now ready to plead to that

    19 charge?

    20 THE DEFENDANT: On the counts of this indictment I am not

    21 guilty and thank. to God and the justice of this court

    22 I think I will be found not guilty.

    23 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you. You may be seated for the

    24 moment. Mr. Pantelic, do you require the indictment to

    25 be read out in full, which you are entitled to do, or

  5. 1 are you prepared to waive the reading of it.

    2 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, your Honour, I request to read this

    3 indictment in full.

    4 JUDGE STEPHEN: Very well. Mr. Bos, would you read the

    5 indictment or at least those portions of it which are

    6 relevant to the present accused?

    7 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, your Honour.

    8 "Indictment. The prosecutor of the International

    9 Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia pursuant to

    10 her authority under Article 18 of the Statute of the

    11 International Criminal Tribunal for the former

    12 Yugoslavia, charges.

    13 Simo Drljaca and Milan Kovacevic with genocide.

    14 Background.

    15 During the early morning hours of 30 April 1992 --

    16 JUDGE STEPHEN: Yes, you might slow down a bit so that what

    17 is being said can be interpreted and understood in that

    18 way.

    19 MR. BOS (for the Registrar): Background: During the early morning hours

    20 of 30th April 1992 Bosnian Serb forces under the

    21 direction and control of the municipality of Prijedor

    22 Crisis Staff (or Krizni Stab) seized control of the town

    23 of Prijedor. The seizure of physical control of the

    24 town and all the municipal functions was the culmination

    25 of preparations that had begun covertly in 1991, in

  6. 1 conjunction with Bosnian Serb efforts throughout

    2 Bosnia-Herzegovina and became overt in early 1992 after

    3 the public announcement by 'Assembly of the Serbian

    4 people in Bosnia and Herzegovina' of the 'Republic of

    5 the Serbian people of Bosnia and Herzegovina' on 9th

    6 January 1992.

    7 In the weeks following 30th April 1992, the crisis

    8 staff implemented or authorised increasingly strict

    9 restrictions on the lives of non-Serbs in the

    10 municipality of Prijedor. All non-Serbs who held

    11 positions in the municipal government organisations who

    12 did not publicly express full support for the new order

    13 and Serbian leaders were expelled from their positions.

    14 Businesses and economic organisations quickly followed

    15 in the same manner, dismissing almost all non-Serb

    16 employees. Roadblocks were set up out throughout the

    17 municipality, particularly around predominantly non-Serb

    18 villages and in Prijedor town. These roadblocks were

    19 used to prevent non-Serbs from leaving the vicinity of

    20 their homes or villages. All non-Serbs were repeatedly

    21 exhorted and warned to turn in all weapons. During this

    22 period similar types of policies and actions were being

    23 implemented in municipalities throughout the

    24 self-proclaimed Serb Republic in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    25 On about 23rd May 1992, approximately three weeks

  7. 1 after the Bosnian Serbs forcibly took control of the

    2 governmental authority in the municipality of Prijedor,

    3 a co-ordinated attack was executed by Serbian forces,

    4 including JAN units, territorial defence (TO) units,

    5 paramilitary units, and police units, combining

    6 intensively artillery and tank shelling followed by

    7 infantry assaults on Bosnian Muslim and Bosnian Croat

    8 areas in the municipality of Prijedor. Between April

    9 and July 1992, attacks following the same pattern were

    10 being conducted by Serbian forces across

    11 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and thousands of Bosnian Muslim and

    12 Bosnian Croat civilians, including women, children and

    13 elderly persons were systematically rounded up and

    14 interned in detention facilities or camps. These

    15 detention facilities were staffed and operated by

    16 military and police personnel and their agents, under

    17 the control of Bosnian Serb military and civilian

    18 authorities. In addition, Bosnian Serb police and

    19 military interrogators not directly assigned to the

    20 guard staff of the camps had unfettered access to all of

    21 the detention facilities and operated in conjunction

    22 with the personnel in control of these detention

    23 facilities.

    24 In the municipality of Prijedor, the majority of

    25 Muslim and Croat residents who survived the initial

  8. 1 attack fled their homes and were seized by Serb and

    2 Bosnian Serb forces. They were then forced to march in

    3 columns bound from one or another of the prison camps or

    4 detention facilities that the Bosnian Serb authorities

    5 had established in the municipality. The Serb and

    6 Bosnian Serb forces brought many Muslims and Croats from

    7 the columns and shot or beat them on the spot. After

    8 being herded to collection areas, most prisoners were

    9 taken to the Embarks, Keraterm or Trnopolie camps. A

    10 number of both male and female prisoners were taken to

    11 the police station in Prijedor for interrogation before

    12 being taken to a camp or released. While at the police

    13 station many of the detainees were severely maltreated

    14 both physically and psychologically.

    15 During the next several weeks, the Serb and

    16 Bosnian Serb forces continued to round up Muslims and

    17 Croats from Kozarac, Prijedor town, and other places in

    18 the municipality and interned them in camps at Omarska

    19 Keraterm and Trnopolje. The final large scale military

    20 attack conducted by the Serb and Bosnian Serb forces in

    21 the municipality occurred on about 20th July 1992

    22 against the predominantly Muslim villages in the hilly

    23 region known as the 'Brdo' on the west side of the Sana

    24 River. Many of those who had escaped capture after the

    25 attacks on the other areas of the municipality in May

  9. 1 1992 had fled to the 'Brdo' area. Those who survived

    2 the attack on the 'Brdo' were also taken to Omarska

    3 Keraterm and Trnopolje camps.

    4 Omarska camp was located in part of an iron ore

    5 mining complex. Keraterm camp was set up in the disused

    6 portion of the Keraterm ceramics factory. Trnopolje

    7 camp was a complex of several buildings in the village

    8 of Trnopolje including the school, a cinema, a cultural

    9 centre, and fields that surrounded them.

    10 Within the area of the Omarska mining complex that

    11 the Bosnian Serb authorities used for the camp, the camp

    12 authorities generally confined the prisoners in three

    13 different buildings: the administration building, where

    14 the interrogations took place and most of the women were

    15 confined, the garage or hangar building, and the

    16 'Whitehouse' a small building where particularly severe

    17 beatings were administered; and on a cement courtyard

    18 area between the buildings known as the 'Pista'. There

    19 was another small building, known as the 'Red House'

    20 where prisoners were sometimes taken but most often did

    21 not emerge alive. Many of Prijedor's Muslim and Croat

    22 intellectuals, professional and political leaders were

    23 sent to Omarska. There were approximately 40 women in

    24 the camp and all of the other prisoners in the camp were

    25 men.

  10. 1 At Keratem camp the prisoners were held in a part

    2 of a long structure that consisted of four large storage

    3 rooms originally intended to store ceramic tiles which

    4 were manufactured at the factory. The prisoners

    5 referred to these storage areas as rooms 1, 2, 3 and 4.

    6 All of the prisoners at Keratem were men, generally of

    7 military age, that is between the ages of 16 and 60.

    8 Trnopolje camp comprised a group of buildings

    9 including a school and community cultural centre. The

    10 majority of the women, children and the elderly were

    11 interned at this camp. A number of families managed to

    12 stay together, or were allowed to stay together and were

    13 interned together at Trnopolje. A number of Bosnian

    14 Muslims and Croats who were detained at Trnopolje had

    15 fled to the camp because it was far too dangerous to

    16 stay in their own homes and villages. After the camps

    17 at Omarska and Keraterm were closed the surviving

    18 prisoners were taken to the Trnopolje and Manjaca

    19 camps".

    20 JUDGE STEPHEN: Mr. Bos, you might pause there for a

    21 moment. Mr. Pantelic, I take it that you would think it

    22 appropriate to confine the balance of the indictment to

    23 those portions that deal with your client?

    24 MR. PANTELIC: Your Honour, if I may ask to proceed with

    25 this indictment after the pause because it is necessary

  11. 1 for my client to be more familiar with all these counts

    2 and all these facts.

    3 JUDGE STEPHEN: You would wish the portions not relating to

    4 him to be read out as well, would you?

    5 MR. PANTELIC: I do not insist that the portion related to

    6 Mr. Drljaca.

    7 JUDGE STEPHEN: That is what I mean; omit those portions.

    8 No objection, Mr. Niemann?

    9 MR NIEMANN: No.

    10 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you, Mr. Bos, if you would continue

    11 then.

    12 MR. BOS (for the Registrar): I will omit paragraph 1 and continue with

    13 paragraph 2.

    14 "The accused Milan Kovacevic also known as 'Mico'

    15 was born in the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. In

    16 1992, he served as the President of the executive board

    17 of the municipality of Prijedor, and was a member of the

    18 municipality of Prijedor Crisis Staff. He is an

    19 anaesthetist by profession and is currently serving as

    20 the director of Prijedor Hospital.

    21 Superior authority. I will omit paragraph 3, 4

    22 and 5. I will continue with paragraph 6.

    23 "During the period from 29th April 1992 to

    24 31st December 1992, Milan Kovacevic was both a member of

    25 the municipality of Prijedor Crisis Staff and the

  12. 1 President of the executive board of the municipality of

    2 Prijedor.

    3 In his role as a member of the Crisis Staff, Milan

    4 Kovacevic was part of the body that held executive power

    5 in the municipality of Prijedor at all times relevant to

    6 this indictment and the body referred to in paragraph 5

    7 above.

    8 As the President of the executive board of the

    9 municipality of Prijedor, Milan Kovacevic occupied the

    10 second most important position on the Crisis Staff, in

    11 terms of the de jure authority. He was the individual

    12 responsible for arranging the details for visits to the

    13 camps by reporters and who provided most of the

    14 information about the camps at the briefings with

    15 visitors to the crisis staff."

    16 JUDGE STEPHEN: Mr Bos, at this stage I think you will

    17 have to continue by including the references to the

    18 other indictee.

    19 MR. BOS: Certainly.

    20 "Count 1 (Genocide). Between April 1992 and

    21 January 1993 Simo Drljaca and Milan Kovacevic did, in

    22 the territory of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, by

    23 their acts and omissions, commit genocide.

    24 "Beginning in the spring of 1992, the crisis staff

    25 of the municipality of Prijedor, including Simo Drljaca

  13. 1 and Milan Kovacevic, planned, organised and implemented

    2 the creation of a number of detention facilities or

    3 camps, including the Omarska, Keratem and Trnopolje

    4 camps. These camps were staffed and operated by

    5 military and police personnel and their agents, under

    6 the control of the Bosnian Serb military and civilian

    7 members of the crisis staff. In addition, other Bosnian

    8 Serb police, military and civilians not directly

    9 assigned to the guard staff of the camps had unfettered

    10 access to all of the detention facilities and operated

    11 in conjunction with the personnel in control of these

    12 detention facilities. In none of the camps were the

    13 detainees afforded proper judicial process and their

    14 internment was not justified by military necessity.

    15 They were detained primarily because of their religious

    16 and ethnic identification. The conditions in the

    17 Omarska, Keratem and Trnopolje camps were abject and

    18 brutal. Bosnian Serb military police and police

    19 personnel in charge of these facilities, their staff,

    20 and other persons who visited the camps, all of whom

    21 were subject to the authority and control of the crisis

    22 staff, killed, sexually assaulted, tortured, and

    23 otherwise physically and psychologically abused

    24 detainees in the camps. At Omarska and Keraterm, the

    25 camps were deliberately operated in a matter designed to

  14. 1 inflict on the detainees conditions intended to bring

    2 about their physical destruction with the attempt to

    3 destroy, in part, the Bosnian Muslim and Bosnian Croat

    4 people as national, ethnic or religious groups. Serious

    5 violations of international humanitarian law of a

    6 similar pattern were committed in both Omarska and

    7 Keraterm camps. Detainees were continuously subjected

    8 to or forced to witness inhumane acts, including murder,

    9 rape and sexual assaults, torture, beatings and robbery

    10 as well as other forms of mental and physical abuse.

    11 Daily food rations provided to detainees amounted to

    12 starvation rations. Medical care for the detainees was

    13 insufficient or non-existent and the general hygienic

    14 conditions prevalent at these camps were grossly

    15 inadequate.

    16 At Omarska prisoners were crowded together with

    17 little or no facilities for personal hygiene. They were

    18 fed starvation rations once a day and given only a few

    19 minutes to go to the canteen area, eat and then leave.

    20 The little water they received was often foul.

    21 Prisoners had no changes of clothing and no bedding.

    22 They received no medical care. Killings and severe

    23 beatings of prisoners were common place. The camp

    24 guards, who were both police and military personnel, and

    25 others who came to the camp and physically abused the

  15. 1 prisoners, used all manner of weapons during these

    2 beatings, including wooden batons, metal rods and tools,

    3 lengths of thick industrial cable, rifle butts and

    4 knives. Both female and male prisoners were beaten,

    5 raped, sexually assaulted, tortured and humiliated.

    6 Hundreds of the detainees, whose identities are known

    7 and unknown, did not survive the camp.

    8 Keratem camp was located at a former ceramics

    9 factory in Prijedor. Conditions for prisoners were

    10 similar to those in Omarska camp. The detainees were so

    11 cramped in the four rooms that on many occasions they

    12 could not lie down. The detainees were not permitted to

    13 move around freely in the camp. Whether detained in

    14 their rooms around the open area outside, they were only

    15 allowed to move when specifically permitted to do so,

    16 usually only to receive their starvation rations or to

    17 go to the toilet. On a daily basis, the camp

    18 leadership, camp guards, who were both police and

    19 military personnel, and others who came to the camp to

    20 abuse the detainees, subjected the detainees the

    21 inhumane conditions, physical violence, constant

    22 humiliation, degradation, degradation and fear of death.

    23 Many detainees were executed in the camp. On one night

    24 in July, 1992, more than 150 military aged men from the

    25 'Brdo' region were executed. Severe beatings were

  16. 1 common place. All manner of weapons were used during

    2 these beatings, including wooden batons, metal rods,

    3 baseball bats, lengths of thick industrial cable, rifle

    4 butts and knives. The beatings, sexual assaults,

    5 tortures, and other cruel and humiliating actions were

    6 generally inflicted in full view of other detainees and

    7 were accompanied by derogatory and humiliating comments

    8 to the victims or their families and general threats to

    9 the other detainees. After they were beaten, tortured,

    10 or sexually assaulted, the detainees were carried,

    11 dragged or forced to crawl back into their rooms,

    12 without any form of care for their injuries. Hundreds

    13 of detainees, whose identities are known and unknown,

    14 did not survive the camp.

    15 Trnopolje camp was established at the site of a

    16 former school and adjacent buildings in Trnopolje

    17 village. It was the largest camp and the location to

    18 which Bosnian Muslim and Bosnian Croat women, children

    19 and the elderly were taken. Some men of military age

    20 also managed to go directly to the Trnopolje camp. The

    21 buildings in the camp were quickly filled and the

    22 remaining detainees had to find shelter in makeshift

    23 huts of plastic and excess materials or remain out in

    24 the open fields. The hygiene facilities were grossly

    25 inadequate. Minimal rations were provided on a sporadic

  17. 1 basis, with female detainees eventually being able to

    2 leave the camp to forage for food in the surrounding

    3 village. The camp served as the staging point for the

    4 mass deportation of all those who survived the initial

    5 attacks and camp regime and also served a much more

    6 sinister purpose: the sexual assault, rape, and torture

    7 of many of the women detained there by camp personnel,

    8 who were both police and military personnel, and by

    9 other military units from the area who came to the camp

    10 for that specific purpose. In many instances, the women

    11 and girls were taken from the camp and raped, tortured,

    12 or sexually abused at other locations. In addition many

    13 prisoners, both male and female were killed, beaten and

    14 otherwise physically and psychologically maltreated by

    15 the camp personnel and other Serbs and Bosnian Serbs who

    16 were allowed into the camp.

    17 Between 30th April 1992 and 31st December 1992

    18 Simo Drljaca and Milan Kovacevic, in concert with

    19 others, planned, instigated, and ordered the

    20 establishment of the camps at Omarska, Keraterm and

    21 Trnopolje and the detention therein of Bosnian Muslims

    22 and Bosnian Croats from the municipality of Prijedor

    23 under conditions calculated to bring about the physical

    24 destruction of the detainees with the intent to destroy

    25 part of the Bosnian Muslim and Bosnian Croat groups as

  18. 1 such. Further, between 30th April 1992 and 31st

    2 December 1992, Simo Drljaca and Milan Kovacevic knew or

    3 had reason to know that their subordinates who staffed

    4 the detention facilities were killing or causing serious

    5 physical or mental harm to Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian

    6 Croats with the intent to destroy them, in part, as a

    7 national, ethnic or religious group, or had done so and

    8 failed to take necessary and reasonable measures to

    9 prevent such acts or to punish the perpetrators thereof.

    10 By these acts and omissions Simo Drljaca and Milan

    11 Kovacevic were complicit in the commission of genocide,

    12 punishable under Articles 4(3)(e) and 7(1) and (3) of

    13 the Statute of the Tribunal."

    14 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you, Mr Bos. Mr. Kovacevic, will you

    15 stand? You have heard the indictment read out. How do

    16 you plead to the count that you were complicit in the

    17 commission of genocide as charged in that indictment?

    18 THE DEFENDANT: I plead the same as I said before. I have

    19 already made a statement, and I now plead the same.

    20 Previously I answered correctly.

    21 JUDGE STEPHEN: I am afraid that you will have to be more

    22 explicit. What I am asking you is this: do you plead

    23 guilty or not guilty?

    24 THE DEFENDANT: I plead not guilty. Again thanks God and

    25 thanks to the justice of this court.

  19. 1 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you. You may be seated. You will be

    2 remanded now to the further custody of the Tribunal in

    3 the detention unit of the Tribunal until further order.

    4 Mr. Pantelic, have you read a copy or have you

    5 rather received and read any of the material, the

    6 supporting material that accompanied the indictment that

    7 has been given to you?

    8 MR. PANTELIC: Your Honour, I got the material just a few

    9 minutes before this hearing. So I am now in possession

    10 of materials and I , of course, need additional time to

    11 be competent with that, yes.

    12 JUDGE STEPHEN: Of course. And that material answers the

    13 description of the material described in Rule 66, does

    14 it?

    15 MR. PANTELIC: Yes. Yes, your Honour it is according to

    16 Rule 66.

    17 JUDGE STEPHEN: Yes. Well, Rule 73 provides for

    18 preliminary motions. Do you anticipate making any such

    19 motions? I ask that because we need to know where we go

    20 from now.

    21 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, your Honour. I intend to file some

    22 motions according to the rules of procedure in time

    23 according to the rules, which is 60 days.

    24 JUDGE STEPHEN: Yes, very well. I have made this morning

    25 an order providing for the filing of motions.

  20. 1 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, your Honour.

    2 JUDGE STEPHEN: Thank you. Mr. Niemann, are you ready

    3 otherwise to proceed to trial?

    4 MR. NIEMANN: Yes, your Honour, we are ready to proceed to

    5 trial. I just wish to correct perhaps what is a

    6 misunderstanding. Not all of the material falling

    7 within the description of that under 66A has at this

    8 stage been disclosed. Some of the material is awaited

    9 in terms of receiving final versions of the transcript

    10 which has been tendered as part of the supporting

    11 material. And in addition to that, your Honours, there

    12 are two witness statements which were provided where

    13 orders had been made in relation to protective

    14 measures. Those two statements have not as yet been

    15 provided as well.

    16 Your Honours, in relation to those few matters we

    17 will either overcome the difficulty with respect to

    18 protective orders, receive the transcript, alternatively

    19 if we are confronted with any difficulty in that regard

    20 we will file motions before the Chamber.

    21 JUDGE STEPHEN: That sounds satisfactory. Mr Pantelic,

    22 you, too, are ready to proceed to trial, of course,

    23 after you receive the additional documents that

    24 Mr. Niemann has just referred to?

    25 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, your Honour, I am ready to proceed to

  21. 1 trial.

    2 JUDGE STEPHEN: I do not propose to fix any date for

    3 trial. I think it would be premature to do so. But it

    4 will be, I think, desirable, I think, to fix a date for

    5 a status conference. Mr. Niemann, have you in mind any

    6 suitable date to fix for that purpose? It occurred to

    7 me that 10th October might be an appropriate date,

    8 having regard to the time limits that are provided for.

    9 MR. NIEMANN: That would be a suitable date for the

    10 Prosecution, your Honour.

    11 JUDGE STEPHEN: It seems a long way off, Mr. Pantelic, but

    12 have you any comment as far as that date is concerned?

    13 MR. PANTELIC: As I am concerned I am completely agreed with

    14 this proposal.

    15 JUDGE STEPHEN: Of course, if events occur that require

    16 more time for you, you have but to apply.

    17 MR. PANTELIC: Yes, your Honour, but I think that we shall

    18 be under this time, during this time we can arrange

    19 that.

    20 JUDGE STEPHEN: Very well. I will fix, therefore, the 10th

    21 October as the date presently fixed for the first status

    22 conference in this matter.

    23 If, and I address now both parties, if there are

    24 any problems that arise in the meantime no doubt the

    25 Trial Chamber will be advised of them, through the

  22. 1 Registrar, and we will see if we can meet those problems

    2 and dispose of them.

    3 Is there anything else outstanding, Mr Niemann?

    4 MR. NIEMANN: Not from the point of view of the Prosecution.

    5 JUDGE STEPHEN: And Mr. Pantelic?

    6 MR. PANTELIC: Not from the point of view of the Defence.

    7 JUDGE STEPHEN: Very well. The Chamber will now adjourn.

    8 (5.25 pm)

    9 (Hearing adjourned for status hearing to

    10 take place on 10th October, 1997)