1 Wednesday, 17 December 2014
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.32 a.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone in and around this
7 Madam Registrar, would you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is the case
9 number IT-09-92-T, the Prosecutor versus Ratko Mladic.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
11 There are no preliminary matters to be raised immediately, if I
12 understand well. Therefore, the witness may be escorted into the
14 Yes, there is, however, one matter which is about scheduling in
15 January. We discussed it earlier. The Chamber announces that for
16 reasons related to the scheduling of witnesses, the week of the 12th of
17 January shall be a non-sitting week and that in the week following, that
18 we'll sit for the full five days of that week.
19 [The witness takes the stand]
20 WITNESS: RATO RUNJEVAC [Resumed]
21 [Witness answered through interpreter]
22 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honours.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning, Mr. Runjevac. Perhaps needless to do
24 but I still want to remind you --
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
1 JUDGE ORIE: I still want to remind you that you are still bound
2 by the solemn declaration you have given at the beginning of your
3 testimony, that you'll speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but
4 the truth.
5 Mr. Stojanovic, I think you had put all your questions to the
6 witness but you were still -- you still have to read a short summary - a
7 short summary, I say - of the testimony of this witness as found in the
9 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. I
10 tried to make it short as agreed, and I hope that I will keep to the
11 number of lines that you gave us.
12 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We do not have the
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Rato Runjevac is a lawyer who --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, the interpreters have not received a
16 text, so therefore would you please read at decent speed.
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I will, Your Honours. Although
18 I think that I gave the summary yesterday. It's the same text. Very
20 He's a lawyer who happened to be in Sarajevo when the war broke
21 out. At the time, he was the senior public prosecutor. On the
22 21st of May, 1992, he notes that with the arrival of the national parties
23 and when they took up power at the republican level, people started
24 taking over positions in the justice system but his position remained the
1 At the time in the city of Sarajevo, the greatest problems were
2 posed by armed incidents and drug trades, and these acts were committed
3 by Juka Prazina, Celo Bajramovic, and others, due to which as part of his
4 duties he sought that meetings be held of all relevant prosecutors and
5 the B and H MUP in order to step up activities relating to the issuance
6 of criminal reports and the criminal prosecution of persons who were
7 making the security situation worse.
8 He's going to talk about specific examples of the different views
9 of the reasons for the disruption of the security situation in Rogatica
10 and Sokolac and the opportunistic attitude of the local authorities
11 regarding incidents caused by Juka Prazina in Sarajevo, as well as the
12 fact that nothing was done and there were no criminal proceedings against
13 the brothers Sabanovic in Visegrad. He will also talk about the support
14 that these persons received from Alija Izetbegovic instead of him
15 actually insisting that they should be criminally charged.
16 He notes that following the well-known incident when the Serbian
17 best man was killed in Bascarsija, he asked the authorised public
18 prosecutor's office in Sarajevo to provide him the case files regarding
19 this incident. And then in the police part of the case, he could see
20 that witnesses recognised the person who fired the shots but the
21 policemen released that person.
22 In the meantime, the rump B and H Parliament decided
23 anti-constitutionally to hold a referendum on independence, and this
24 caused inter-ethnic tensions to rise to the ultimate degree. So in view
25 of the experiences with the barricades, people started taking their
1 families out of Sarajevo and then they would return to Sarajevo. The
2 witness himself decided to do that.
3 Also, in those days in April 1992, he noticed armed people in
4 Sarajevo. He could see that there was shooting all over town. He
5 received information that there were first casualties. He was threatened
6 by his neighbour that he would be killed for no reason at all. And on
7 the eve of the 1st of May holiday, he decided to go to the village where
8 his children were, his children invited him to do that. On the way there
9 he saw a number of check-points near villages with armed people, both
10 Serb and Bosniak ones. Since he could no longer return to his job
11 because of the escalating conflict, he remained in Trebinje until the end
12 of the war.
13 Your Honours, this was the summary of the statement for
14 Witness Rato Runjevac, and I would like to thank the witness for
15 answering my questions. This would be the end of our presentation
16 regarding this witness.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Stojanovic.
18 Is the Prosecution ready to cross-examine the witness?
19 MR. FILE: Yes, Your Honour. Good morning.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning.
21 Witness, you will now be cross-examined by Mr. File. You find
22 him to your right, and Mr. File is counsel for the Prosecution.
23 Please proceed.
24 MR. FILE: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Cross-examination by Mr. File:
1 Q. Good morning, Mr. Runjevac.
2 A. [In English] Good morning.
3 Q. I'm going to begin by asking you a few questions about your
4 background. You discuss your professional background in paragraph 2 of
5 your statement. There the only mention of any time that you spent in the
6 military is where you say you completed your military service in
7 June 1975. So is it correct to say that the only time you were in the
8 military was in 1975 or earlier?
9 A. [Interpretation] I was not in the army before 1975. I was in the
10 army in 1974, in Osinjak, that's where I served my military term of duty.
11 Q. And you were never employed in the military justice system;
13 A. Before or after? [In English] No. [Interpretation] No.
14 Q. I would like to turn your attention to paragraph 19 of your
15 statement; specifically, the part where you refer to seeing two of your
16 neighbours with guns that they should not have had, as you say. And then
17 you conclude the paragraph stating:
18 "All this told me that my Bosniak neighbours had long had their
19 sources for purchasing weapons that civilians could not have according to
20 the law, only authorised officials."
21 MR. FILE: And, Your Honours, this is D860 in e-court. For
22 reference it's page 9 of the English and page 6 of the B/C/S.
23 Q. Now, my question for you is: Here are you drawing a conclusion
24 about all of your Bosnian Muslim neighbours or just the two that you saw
25 with weapons?
1 A. I only saw the two of them with weapons.
2 Q. And you did not know how these individuals obtained these
3 weapons; correct?
4 A. Correct, I didn't know.
5 Q. And you --
6 A. If I may add this: This other person that had this American
7 pump-action rifle was my neighbour. We often spent time together,
8 visited each other. And before the war, he showed me a wood-burning
9 stove in his apartment, which in the Bosnian is called "bubnjara," which
10 was indicative to me, why would you need a wood-burning stove in an
11 apartment that had central heating? So that was a little bit strange to
12 me. It didn't seem to make sense.
13 Q. Okay. Well, for the moment I'm just asking you about the -- the
14 weapons that you saw. You also did not know how long these two
15 individuals had had those weapons; correct?
16 A. That is correct. I didn't.
17 Q. Now, in terms of your whereabouts, you left Sarajevo on or before
18 the 30th of April, 1992; correct?
19 A. First I took my children on the 3rd of April, this was before the
20 international recognition, because there was panic about what would
21 happen in the town once there was international recognition. This was
22 particularly prominent among my colleagues, mothers, so that I decided --
23 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, let me stop you there for a moment. Could
24 you please focus your answers on what is asked because part of your
25 answer you're giving now is, first of all, not a direct answer to the
1 question; and secondly, it is already in your statement. So therefore,
2 it's repetitious.
3 Please proceed, Mr. File.
4 And I think the question was that you left -- and the question is
5 about you, that you left on or before the 30th of April, 1992.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, on the 30th of April.
7 MR. FILE:
8 Q. And you did not return after that; correct?
9 A. Correct.
10 Q. And you also did not execute any of your functions as senior
11 public prosecutor in Sarajevo after the 30th of April, 1992; correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And you were removed from that position on the 21st of May, 1992?
14 A. Yes, yes.
15 Q. And the reason given for that was wilful abandonment of your duty
16 and work obligations; correct?
17 A. I don't know about the reasons given.
18 MR. FILE: Could we look at 65 ter number 31808, please.
19 Q. So I'm just going to direct your attention to the lower left-hand
20 portion of the page in B/C/S. You'll see that this is from the
21 Official Gazette of RBiH. It's a decision to relieve of duty the senior
22 public prosecutor in Sarajevo, and it says:
23 "Rato Runjevac is hereby relieved of duty of the Sarajevo Senior
24 Public Prosecutor due to wilful abandonment of his duty and work
25 obligations at the Senior Public Prosecutor's Office in Sarajevo."
1 Now, is this consistent with your understanding of why you were
2 removed from duty?
3 A. First of all, I did receive this decision -- I never received it.
4 Secondly, it is not true that I wilfully abandoned my work because I'd
5 returned in early April, once I left my children in Trebinje, which was
6 my intention, to return after the 1st of May holidays, which lasted for
7 four or five days. Perhaps you know that on the 2nd of May - and I
8 remember this very well because it was my birthday on the 3rd of May -
9 when I meant to return -- I meant to return on Sunday, which was the last
10 day of the holiday, there was a general attack and defence actions in
11 Sarajevo. Due to the war there was a lot of destruction, and it was when
12 I decided that I could not return to Sarajevo without putting my life and
13 security in danger.
14 When I tried to leave, they had already tried to mobilise me at
15 the check-point in Lukavica and it was difficult to leave, never mind to
16 come back after a few days -- or rather, after a month.
17 Since the post office building in Sarajevo was burning, all the
18 telephone lines were cut on the 2nd of May, but I managed to use special
19 lines of the electricity utility company from Trebinje, and I managed to
20 reach my secretary, Zdravka, and to tell her that I could not return for
21 objective reasons. Of course, I was not only one in that situation.
22 Q. Okay --
23 A. Many parents were in that situation. Excuse me. All right. All
25 MR. FILE: Your Honour, I would tender this document and I would
1 have no further questions.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Document 13808 receives Exhibit Number P7014,
4 Your Honours.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
6 I would have one or not more than a few questions.
7 Questioned by the Court:
8 JUDGE ORIE: May I draw your attention to paragraph 15 of your
10 Could it be shown on the screen. And that is P -- D860. I think
11 it would be page 6 in -- the end of paragraph 15 in both languages.
12 Yes. You describe in that paragraph the act and conduct of a
13 certain Mr. Sabanovic, and then at the very end you -- the last sentence
15 "The public knows about this because it was broadcast on
16 television together with the fact that Alija Izetbegovic, the president
17 of the BH Presidency, appealed to him and supported him, instead of
18 insisting on him being prosecuted."
19 Now, you say the public knows about this. Do you consider
20 yourself to be a member of the public and therefore you learned about it
21 through the media? Is that -- or do you say: The public knew it because
22 they watched television and I knew it for other reasons?
23 A. Your Honour, Mr. President, that incident was broadcast live by
24 Television Sarajevo or the Bosnia-Herzegovina television, so the dialogue
25 between that gentleman and the president of the presidency of Bosnia and
1 Herzegovina, Mr. Alija Izetbegovic, everybody could follow it on
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. First could you tell us when it happened?
4 Because that's totally unclear from the -- from the statement. When
5 exactly did it happen?
6 A. I really cannot say exactly if it was March or April. Perhaps it
7 was in May when I was watching television in Trebinje.
8 JUDGE ORIE: So it was after you had left Sarajevo?
9 A. I'm not sure. I'm not sure.
10 JUDGE ORIE: And did you watch it on television and that's the
11 source of your knowledge?
12 A. Yes, yes.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, now just for me to understand, apparently there
14 was a violent exchange. And then you say it was live broadcasted.
15 Should I understand negotiations between Mr. Sabanovic and the
16 government? And where was Mr. Izetbegovic at the time? I mean, I'm just
17 trying to get an impression on what exactly happened. Was it by
18 telephone that they communicated?
19 A. As far as I can remember, what probably happened was the TV
20 station at the time was called Yutel and it frequently tried to calm the
21 situation down. Mr. Milic, everybody who worked at that television
22 station. So I think that there was a contact, phone contact between him
23 and the person who was at the hydroelectric power-plant. And they also
24 linked up Mr. Izetbegovic from the presidency so that he could try to get
25 Mr. Sabanovic not to do what he was threatening to do, which was to
1 destroy the dam. The link was a telephone link and that conversation was
2 broadcast live on television.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Earlier you said: "So I think that there was a
4 contact, phone contact ..."
5 Do you think that that was the case or do you -- why do you think
7 A. I think so because they managed to establish a connection with
8 Mr. Sabanovic at the hydroelectric power-plant by telephone, and then
9 they were looking for a way to influence him so that he would not carry
10 out his threat. And then they asked Mr. Alija Izetbegovic to speak with
11 him on the telephone, and all of that was broadcast live on television.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Now, what exactly did Mr. Izetbegovic tell
13 Mr. Sabanovic?
14 A. I don't remember that after 22 years or more. All I know is that
15 he had a positive effect on him so that he did not do that. He was
16 explaining why he wanted to do that. So he was telling Mr. Sabanovic
17 that he understood him, his reasons and everything, but he was trying to
18 get him not to do what he was intending to do because of the danger that
19 was posed by that down river for the people there. So Alija Izetbegovic
20 had a positive effect and he used his position and his authority to get
21 Mr. Sabanovic not to do what he was intending to do.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now you also say in your statement that he
23 "appealed to him and supported him, instead of insisting on him being
24 prosecuted." Would you expect Mr. Izetbegovic at that moment to say to
25 Mr. Sabanovic: You'll be prosecuted if you go on? Is that what you --
1 rather than to calm him down in whatever way. I'm puzzled by the
2 statement in this respect.
3 A. I believe that in our situation in terms of crime and security,
4 the idea was to calm the situation down, to give him support, and not to
5 threaten him. However, when the crime was committed, when owing to his
6 activity - I mean, Mr. Izetbegovic - he didn't do that, and I believe
7 that after that, at his request as a member and the president of the
8 highest Executive Board, which was the presidency, they should have given
9 an order for the crime to be prosecuted. However, I don't believe that
10 that ever transpired.
11 JUDGE ORIE: You think you don't believe that. Any reason for
12 that belief?
13 A. I don't believe because immediately after the events, and also
14 for objective reasons - i.e., the war - I did not hear or I did not read
15 anywhere that any of those crimes were ever prosecuted; for example, the
16 destruction of the sculpture of Ivo Andric, the events at the dam, the
17 barricades, the murder of the wedding party member, and so on and so
19 JUDGE ORIE: Now, the sentence I read to you suggests that
20 Izetbegovic could be heard on television not insisting on Mr. Sabanovic
21 being prosecuted, but I do understand that that part of the sentence, the
22 very last part, relates to that you believe that he was not prosecuted
23 because you never heard he was prosecuted, and what the role of
24 Mr. Izetbegovic was at that time is -- you couldn't know that from
25 watching television, at least not the live broadcast of the event. Is
1 that well understood?
2 A. Correct, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE ORIE: I have no further questions.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: I have a follow-up question.
5 Sir, at the time who -- which authority was responsible for
6 initiating prosecutions against criminals?
7 A. Both then and now it would be the police, the Ministry of the
8 Interior, and those who actually initiate prosecution are state
9 prosecutions. The point of my statement was that --
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm not asking --
11 A. -- for a year and a half I never received anything --
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm not asking you about the point of your
13 statement. I am just asking you a simple question. You have answered my
15 So it would not be Izetbegovic's duty to initiate prosecutions,
16 isn't it so? It was for you, the prosecutor, to do so.
17 A. Yes.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you. I have no further questions.
19 JUDGE ORIE: But then -- one last question.
20 You had left Sarajevo already at that point in time and were not
21 actually functioning as a prosecutor?
22 A. I don't think so but let me just say that the municipal or,
23 rather, basic prosecutor in Visegrad was responsible for this, for the
24 prosecution of this crime. He should have done it on a report received
25 by the police. I don't know whether he ever received it or not. And it
1 was up to the prosecutor to prosecute, and I did it all that time without
2 any criminal reports as a matter of fact. I did it as means of
3 preemption to prevent any escalations of the situation.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. But you have no specific knowledge on how it
5 happened that he was not prosecuted, what exactly -- how the
6 decision-making process took place because you were not there.
7 A. Nothing specific. But those organs were obstructed in the work
8 along party lines because the parties took over not only in the
9 ministries but also in the executive power.
10 JUDGE ORIE: I see that as a general matter. But no specific
11 knowledge about this decision, if there was any, which resulted in the
12 non-prosecution of Mr. Sabanovic.
13 I have no further questions. Any questions triggered by --
14 Mr. Stojanovic, no further questions. Mr. File --
15 MR. FILE: No, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE ORIE: -- no further questions.
17 Then, Mr. Runjevac, this concludes your testimony in this court.
18 It may have been relatively short, but as I reminded you several times,
19 we have your statement and of course that's the main body of the evidence
20 you have given. I would like to thank you very much for coming a long
21 way to The Hague, for having answered the questions that were put to you
22 by the parties and by the Bench, and I wish you a safe return home again.
23 You may follow the usher.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I thank you for having listened to
25 me. Thank you.
1 [The witness withdrew]
2 JUDGE ORIE: Next witness to be called, no protective measures,
3 Mr. Lukic?
4 MR. LUKIC: That's right, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: And that would be --
6 MR. LUKIC: That's Mr. Boro Tadic.
7 JUDGE ORIE: -- Boro Tadic.
8 Could the witness be escorted into the courtroom.
9 MR. FILE: May I be excused, Your Honour?
10 JUDGE ORIE: You are excused, Mr. File.
11 Mr. Tieger, is it -- we're just discussing, was it Mr. File's
12 first appearances today in court? Yesterday, of course. I mean
14 [The witness entered court]
15 MR. TRALDI: No, Mr. President. He'd been introduced to the
16 Chamber during the testimony of Witness Bojanovic.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then we have to be ashamed of ourselves to
18 have forgotten about that. But at least the matter is clear and I do
19 understand that the Prosecution is following good standards to introduce
20 new counsel.
21 Good morning, Mr. Tadic. Before you give evidence, the Rules
22 require that you make a solemn declaration. May I invite you to make
23 that solemn declaration of which the text is now handed out to you.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
25 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Please be seated, Mr. Tadic.
2 WITNESS: BORO TADIC
3 [Witness answered through interpreter]
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tadic, you'll first be examined by Mr. Lukic.
5 You'll find Mr. Lukic to your left. Mr. Lukic is counsel for Mr. Mladic.
6 Please proceed, Mr. Lukic.
7 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Examination by Mr. Lukic:
9 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning.
10 A. Godspeed.
11 Q. Could you please tell us your name for the record?
12 A. Boro Tadic.
13 Q. Mr. Tadic, have you provided a statement to the Radovan Karadzic
14 Defence team?
15 A. Yes, I have.
16 Q. And based on that statement, have you also spoken to the
17 General Mladic Defence team and have you provided a statement to them as
19 A. Yes, I have.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I would like to call up 1D1616.
21 Q. Mr. Tadic, you have that document on the screen before you. Do
22 you recognise the signature on the screen?
23 A. Yes, I do.
24 Q. Whose signature is that?
25 A. It's my signature.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now see the last page of the
2 document, please.
3 Q. Do you see a signature again?
4 A. Yes, I do.
5 Q. Do you recognise it? Whose signature is this?
6 A. This is my signature.
7 Q. When we reviewed this statement, would you say that everything
8 has been recorded correctly?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. According to your best knowledge, what is contained in this
11 statement, is everything true and accurate?
12 A. Yes, true and accurate.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I would like to tender the statement
14 into evidence.
15 MR. JEREMY: Good morning, Your Honours. No objections.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy, no objections.
17 Madam Registrar.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Document 1D01616 receives Exhibit Number D861,
19 Your Honours.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, if the same questions would be put to you
21 today, would you in substance give the same answers?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
23 JUDGE ORIE: D861 is admitted into evidence.
24 Mr. Lukic, it happened several times over the last few weeks that
25 the logical sequence, first question is: Does the document reflect what
1 you said; second, did you give that information to the best of your
2 knowledge; third question, would you give the same answers if being asked
3 the same questions today. That's the sequence which is -- we're losing
4 parts of it.
5 MR. LUKIC: I'm always grateful for your help, Your Honours.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed. The matter has been repaired.
7 Please move on with -- if you have any questions or perhaps you would
8 prefer to start reading the summary of the statement.
9 MR. LUKIC: I will first read statement summary, Your Honours,
10 and I will have only a few questions for this witness.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
12 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
13 When the war broke out in Croatia, the 6th Partizan Brigade was
14 mobilised in Sanski Most municipality. The brigade commander was
15 Colonel Branko Basara, and Mr. Boro Tadic was the commander of the
16 1st Battalion.
17 In the spring of 1992, the general security situation in Bosnia
18 and Herzegovina deteriorated, inter-ethnic tensions escalated, the
19 conflict from the territory of Croatia split into B and H and the
20 situation worsened by the day. For this reason a decision was made and
21 in the early April of 1992, the 6th Krajina Brigade of the JNA was
22 brought back from Western Slavonia to the area of Sanski Most.
23 Members of the unit mobilised in the area of Sanski Most were not
24 professional military personnel; rather, they were local people.
25 Before the start of the war in Bosnia, Mr. Tadic has personally
1 taken part in discussions with the Muslims, and he went to the Muslim
2 villages explaining that peace should be preserved.
3 Before the war, Muslims and Croats were arming illegally and
4 organising a paramilitary force. Even though some of them responded to
5 mobilisation in 1991, they were increasingly leaving the unit. They also
6 ignored the call to surrender illegal weapons and instead attacked the
7 soldiers and police who were tasked with disarming them.
8 At no point was the policy of the SDS or the VRS to remove
9 permanently the Muslims and Croats from B and H territory to which the
10 Bosnian Serbs claimed right. The Serbs sought for a long time a formula
11 for coexistence and for the survival of the common country and its
13 Mr. Tadic knows that municipal authorities distributed
14 humanitarian aid equally to all those who were in need, regardless of
15 their ethnic or religious background.
16 That was statement summary, and I would have only couple of
17 questions for Mr. Tadic. With your leave, Your Honours.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed as you suggest.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Mr. Tadic, were you a member of the Assembly of Bosnia and
21 Herzegovina at one point?
22 A. I was a member of the Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina from
23 1986 to 1990. That was the last Communist assembly, the Assembly of the
24 Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the eve of multiparty
1 Q. Did you participate in the founding of the SDS?
2 A. Bearing in mind my speeches at the sessions of the Assembly of
3 Bosnia and Herzegovina, after I had realised that there was a project and
4 an intention for my state to disintegrate, to be broken up, and when I
5 had realised that I was isolated and that those who were with me --
6 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, I am stopping you there. You are
7 apparently giving reasons for whatever will follow. The question was:
8 Did you participate in the founding of the SDS? Did you or did you not?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What I'm trying to say is that it
10 was only natural --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, Witness --
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- for me to say what I was saying
13 at the assembly sessions at the time.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, that is not the question. Whether it's
15 natural what you said or not is not what you are asked to tell us. You
16 were asked to tell us whether you participated in the founding of the
17 SDS. Did you participate in the founding or did you not participate?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I did participate in the
19 founding of the Serbian Democratic Party.
20 JUDGE ORIE: That's an answer to the question. Listen carefully
21 to the next question Mr. Lukic will put to you.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Could you please give us the reasons why you participated in the
24 founding of the SDS?
25 A. I realised already as a member of the Assembly of
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina, especially in 1988, 1989, and 1990, that the years
2 ahead of us would be very grave. When I realised that the Muslims had
3 set up their own party and that the Croats had established their own
4 party, I participated in the founding of the Serbian Democratic Party
5 during the first month or so. But my condition was not to be a party
6 member, bearing in mind that my wish was to be free from any political
7 chains, because my faith in God forbade me to be a slave to another man
8 as I was a slave to Tito in the Communist Party during the communist
9 rule. I didn't want that again.
10 Q. Were you a member of the SDS or not?
11 A. No, I was not.
12 Q. And let me ask you what your positions were in 1992, from the
13 beginning of 1992 until the end?
14 A. In early 1992 I was the commander of the 1st Battalion of the
15 6th Sana Brigade in Jasenovac. I became sick in January and February,
16 and I ended up in the military hospital in Sarajevo on the 17th of March,
17 and I stayed there until the 2nd of April. What happened was that my
18 return from Sarajevo through the barricades that had already been set up,
19 and I saw with my own eyes that Muslim and Croat flags were tied, the
20 night that I returned, the brigade from Jasenovac returned as well, and
21 then the brigade commander appointed me as his assistant for morale and
22 religious affairs.
23 I performed those duties in the course of April and May 1992. In
24 May 1992, I heard from the commander that those people from the
25 municipality suggested that I should be the secretary of the Secretariat
1 for National Defence. However, at that time I was not in Sanski Most
2 often because I couldn't pass through Muslim villages. It was only at
3 the end of May that I realised what was being proposed. Up to the month
4 of July, I was the secretary for the Secretariat of National Defence, and
5 as of August I was the chief of the Department of National Defence for
6 Sanski Most, and I stayed in that position until the 1st of May, 1995.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Could you please speak slowly, sir. The
8 interpreters are desperately trying to keep pace with you and they are
9 finding it very difficult.
10 JUDGE ORIE: And that's what I mean when I make this gesture, as
11 I did several times, and you saw it.
12 Please proceed.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. And one more thing: When you were appointed assistant commander
15 for morale and religious affairs, did you continue serving as the
16 battalion commander?
17 A. While I was in hospital while I was sick, another person was
18 appointed and replaced me. And as soon as I returned, the battalion
19 commander who was appointed remained at that position, and I was given
20 another role as assistant commander for morale and religious affairs.
21 Q. Thank you Mr. Tadic. This is all we had for you at this moment.
22 Thank you.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: I just don't understand the very last answer,
24 Mr. Lukic.
25 Sir, you say when you came back from hospital, the person who had
1 been appointed to replace you continued in the post of assistant
2 commander for religious affairs and -- morale and religious affairs. And
3 then you say also that you were given another post, but then you call it
4 by the same name. What post were you placed in now when you came from
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was the commander of the
7 1st Battalion before I was hospitalised. And then while I was
8 hospitalised another person was appointed as the battalion commander.
9 When I returned from hospital, which coincided with the return of the
10 brigade from Jasenovac to Sanski Most, I was appointed as assistant
11 commander for morale and religious affairs. The person who had been
12 appointed in my place continued serving as the battalion commander.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. [Overlapping speakers] ...
17 MR. LUKIC: If I can just follow-up.
18 Q. If Mr. Tadic can just give us the name, if he knows, if he
20 A. Brane Cicic.
21 Q. [Interpretation] Once again can you repeat the name of that
23 A. Brane Cicic.
24 Q. Thank you, Mr. Tadic. Once again, thank you.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tadic, you will now be cross-examined by
1 Mr. Jeremy. You will find Mr. Jeremy to your right, and Mr. Jeremy is
2 counsel for the Prosecution.
3 And may I urge you to focus your answer on what is asked, rather
4 than to move in all directions.
5 Mr. Jeremy.
6 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
7 Cross-examination by Mr. Jeremy:
8 Q. And good morning, Mr. Tadic.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Wait.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
11 MR. JEREMY:
12 Q. I would like to begin, just in the couple of minutes that we
13 have, by returning to something that you said this morning. So if I
14 understand correctly, you were a founding member of the
15 Serbian Democratic Party, or the SDS, but you were not in fact a member
16 of that party; is that correct?
17 A. The conversation with those who initiated the foundation of the
18 party started by me saying, "I will help in the setting up of the
19 Serbian Democratic Party as a movement of the Serbian people to preserve
20 Yugoslavia on one condition: I don't want to be a party member."
21 Mr. Sendic, who was my collocutor, accepted that. I did participate in
22 the founding of the party but with the reservation, with the caveat that
23 I would never hold a position, I would never work as a party member, but
24 I said that I will invest all of my potentials in preserving Yugoslavia
25 and in the project which was the political platform of the
1 Serbian Democratic Party.
2 Q. Okay. And the last question on this area is this: Now, together
3 with Radovan Karadzic you arranged for a gathering of the SDS in
4 September 1990 in Lusci Palanka that was attended by him and various
5 other leaders of the SDS; correct?
6 A. During the month when the party was being established I was in
7 constant contact and I happened to be together with Radovan twice. For
8 the first time it was in 1990 and the second time was on the 9th of
9 September, 1992, in Lusci Palanka --
10 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: In 1990.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- when he and Raskovic were there.
12 In other words, I took part in the organising of that event.
13 MR. JEREMY:
14 Q. Thank you.
15 MR. JEREMY: Your Honours, I know we are at break time.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Then we'll take a break first.
17 Mr. Tadic, we'll take a break of 20 minutes. We'd like to see
18 you back after the break. You may follow the usher.
19 [The witness stands down]
20 JUDGE ORIE: We'll resume at 5 minutes to 11.00.
21 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.
22 --- On resuming at 10.57 a.m.
23 JUDGE ORIE: We are waiting for the witness to be escorted into
24 the courtroom.
25 There was one preliminary matter which we should deal with before
1 the next witness arrives, but I don't know how much time it would take.
2 If it is a matter of -- that's at least our information, that before
3 Mr. Milutinovic would arrive that we would have to deal with a
4 preliminary matter. But if it takes more than half a minute or minute,
5 then I would postpone it. If it is dealt with in a second, then we'd
6 hear it now.
7 MR. TIEGER: It will take longer than a half a minute, not much
8 but sufficiently more that we should proceed now.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Then we proceed now.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I take it that Mr. Tieger was speaking and not
11 Mr. Traldi. Now it's corrected.
12 [The witness takes the stand]
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy, you may proceed with your
15 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
16 Q. Mr. Tadic, you testified in the Karadzic case in December 2013;
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And you told the truth in that testimony; correct?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Now, your statement in the Karadzic case took the form of
22 question and answer. Do you recall that?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Now, what I'd like to do now is to look at one of the questions
25 and one of the answers that you provided in that statement.
1 MR. JEREMY: Could we therefore please see 65 ter 1D02286. And
2 that's Mr. Tadic's statement from the Karadzic case.
3 Q. All right, Mr. Tadic. So we see that this is your statement. We
4 see your name on the front page.
5 MR. JEREMY: Could we please go to page 3, and I'd like to look
6 at question 14.
7 Q. Now, I'll note that paragraph 12 and 13 of the Karadzic statement
8 are very similar in substance to paragraphs 11 and 12 of your Mladic
9 statement. But I'd like to focus now on paragraph 14, and I'll read the
10 question and the answer, and I'll ask you if you stand by that answer in
11 respect of your testimony in this case. So the question is as follows:
12 "Did the shortage of the professional command personnel influence
13 the quality of command and control in the unit mobilised in the
14 Sanski Most area?"
15 MR. JEREMY: If we can go to the next page in the English,
17 Q. And the answer:
18 "No, not to a significant degree. Reserve officers were
19 generally trained for certain levels of command. They took courses and
20 were called for tactical exercises that the JNA organised, and this
21 training was of high standard."
22 So simply, Mr. Tadic, do you stand by the answer that you
23 provided to that question today?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 MR. JEREMY: And I'm finished with the Karadzic statement, thank
3 Q. Now, sir, in paragraph 21 of your statement you discuss
4 propaganda, and I'd like to ask you few questions on that topic now.
5 Now, in 1992, the SDS produced a bulletin called the "Informator";
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And I'd like to take a look at that with you now.
9 MR. JEREMY: Could we please see 65 ter 06616 on the screens.
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I think this is the wrong document.
11 MR. JEREMY: I think we're still waiting for it to come up, so
12 06616, please.
13 JUDGE ORIE: That still seems not to be the document.
14 Could everyone verify whether he's using the right numbers,
15 either by asking or in responding to the request?
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And could you repeat the number of the document
17 you are looking for.
18 MR. JEREMY: Yes, I'm looking for document number 06616,
19 according to my notes.
20 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The 65 ter number of the statement of the witness
21 is quite similar, but this bears 1D1616, but this is not what we are
22 looking for.
23 JUDGE ORIE: I think we have the right document --
24 MR. JEREMY: Yes.
25 JUDGE ORIE: -- now on our screen.
1 Please proceed.
2 MR. JEREMY: Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you for your
3 patience, Your Honours.
4 Q. Now, sir, on our screen before us we see the "Informator" of
5 Serbian Democratic Party Sanski Most. And we see it's published on
6 St. Peter's Day 1992. Now, St. Peter's Day is in July; correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Now, we see that the publisher of this document is the
9 Serbian Democratic Party Information and Promotion Centre. Now, below
10 that we see editor-in-chief Borislav Savanovic. Now, he was the
11 president of the club of the SDS deputies in Sanski Most; correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And looking at the associates below that, we see R. Nedjeljko,
14 that's a reference to Nedjeljko Rasula; correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And he was president of the Crisis Staff in Sanski Most; right?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Now we also see a reference to Boro Tadic as one of the
19 associates. That's you, right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And so you contributed to this publication; correct?
22 A. I did.
23 Q. Now, we see at the bottom of the page that it was printed in
24 300 copies. Now, the target audience of the "Informator" was not just
25 SDS members but also Serbs and non-Serbs in Sanski Most; correct?
1 A. It was up to the people to read if they wanted to.
2 Q. But it was generally available; yes?
3 A. Yes. Whoever could get their hands on it could read it and
4 inform themselves.
5 Q. Now, I'd like now to move to the content of this document. But
6 before I do, I'd just want to remind you what you said in paragraph 21 of
7 your statement, which is as follows:
8 "It is bizarre to talk about the Serbian propaganda at the time
9 as allegedly disseminating hatred and fear."
10 And then at the end of that paragraph 21, you go on to say that
11 the Serbs tried to "calm down the situation and prevent conflict."
12 MR. JEREMY: Now, could we go to page 3 in this document, please.
13 Q. Now, sir, we see that this section begins:
14 "Dear brother Serbs ..."
15 And I'll read a part of it.
16 "Do you know what our blood-thirsty enemies have been scheming
17 for us?
18 "What they had in mind was to gouge out our eyes and carve us up,
19 hack our bodies to pieces, rape women and girls in front of their
20 dearest, to circumcise, to destroy our religion, to crush us - just
21 because we happen to be Serbs.
22 "Don't think that anybody's family would have been spared. They
23 had monsters ready and committed to raping Serbian women, and they had
24 developed a system of killing each and every Serb."
25 And I'll skip down a few paragraphs to the eighth paragraph down,
1 where we read:
2 "They had been preparing for genocide against the Serbs, but did
3 not get away with it because we saw what was coming. We warned and
4 prepared our people in time."
5 Now, Mr. Tadic, this is propaganda intended to disseminate hatred
6 and fear, isn't it?
7 A. When one discusses the truth, it is no propaganda aimed at
8 misleading but rather to illuminate so that people would understand what
9 is possible to happen. Everything what Rasula wrote had to do with some
10 documents he showed me in the office. They found it in the possession of
11 the SDS [as interpreted]. He even mentioned some instruments they found
12 during their searches and their plans in terms of who was supposed to do
14 Given the fact that we had gone through it all 50 years before in
15 1941, when only in one day five and a half thousand Serbs were killed and
16 when thousands upon thousands of people from Sana were taken to
17 Jasenovac, those wounds - which had still not healed - served as a
18 warning for us, that we need to organise ourselves, and that we do not
19 allow what happened in 1941 to happen again.
20 As for the breakup of Yugoslavia, well, the Western world
21 employed its cunning manner in that and we tried to pre-empt it. We were
22 no longer the same people --
23 Q. Sir?
24 A. -- who saw the genocide and slaughter of 1941.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, could I just -- I do understand that you
1 say it's not propaganda because it's the truth. That is, in brief, your
2 answer to the question.
3 Mr. Lukic.
4 MR. LUKIC: Maybe witness should answer your questions first. I
5 just have one intervention into -- into transcript.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
7 But is that well understood, your answer which I would just
8 summarise in this way.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
11 I would have another question, but first, Mr. Lukic, I leave it
12 to you.
13 MR. LUKIC: Page 31 --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
15 MR. LUKIC: -- line 4.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 MR. LUKIC: I think that wrong party was recorded. Maybe it
18 should be clarified. "In possession of ..."
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I think, yes.
20 The documents that Mr. Rasula showed you in his office, they
21 found it in the possession of, may I take it that you want to refer to in
22 possession of the SDA?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. In his office, I don't recall
24 the day exactly, but --
25 JUDGE ORIE: No, no -- just --
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- since I was away --
2 JUDGE ORIE: No, the problem was that it was recorded as "SDS"
3 but you referred to, which seems to be logical, the SDA.
4 I have one short question. I thought you had confirmed that
5 already but --
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. I hope I said the SDA.
7 [Trial Chamber confers]
8 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then one simple question. You also said in
9 paragraph 21: "They tried to calm down the situation." The language you
10 just saw on your screen, do you consider that language which would be
11 useful to calm down the situation?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was much propaganda coming
13 from the West against the Serbs.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, that's not my question. My question is:
15 Whether the language that was just shown to you, whether you consider
16 that language of a type to calm down the situation?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was a response to what was
18 forthcoming, the breakup of Yugoslavia. No one was having it easy at the
20 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, for one reason or another you prefer rather
21 not to answer my question.
22 Mr. Jeremy, please proceed.
23 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
24 Q. Now -- so I'd like to look at another part of this document, and
25 it's a part that is explicitly authored by Mr. Rasula --
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Jeremy, may I interrupt you. I'm terribly
2 sorry to do this. I would like -- I have got a question related to just
3 what the witness has just been saying.
4 Sir, as an associate member of the "Informator," which is an
5 organ of the SDS, you were working for the SDS, were you not?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I attended only one meeting.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's not my question.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And --
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: I stop you there. As a contributor to the
10 "Informator" by virtue of being of an associate member, you were working
11 for the SDS, were you not?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Let me explain the way the
13 establishment --
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: No, I don't want you to explain -- no --
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- went and developed.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: No, I'm just asking you a very simple question.
17 You can answer me "yes" or "no." Were you working for the SDS?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I worked for the Serbian people.
19 If that included the SDS, then, yes, I helped wherever I could.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: This --
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I helped in the establishment of
22 the party.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: I am not talking about the establishment. I am
24 talking about contributing to the "Informator." That was an SDS organ.
25 So by being -- you were contributing to the work of the SDS, were you
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Of course. Of course.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes. Now, I'm asking you this question because at
4 page 24, lines 8 to 17 are too long to mention but I'm just going to
5 mention one line. At line 12 you say:
6 "I did participate in the founding of the party but with the
7 reservation, with the caveat that I would never hold a position, I would
8 never work as a party member."
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: That is not correct because now here you're
11 working as an associate member of an organ of the SDS.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, thank you.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, as an associate but not as a
15 member of the party.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy.
18 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
19 Could we please go to page 5 in the English of this document and
20 page 4 in the B/C/S.
21 Q. And, Mr. Tadic, this is a section written by Mr. Rasula and we
22 see the title is: "The Place and the Role of the
23 Serbian Democratic Party in Time of War."
24 MR. JEREMY: And actually we'll need to -- having established the
25 title, I'll need to go to the next page in the English, please.
1 Q. Now, sir, I'd like you to focus on the seventh paragraph down
2 on -- of the B/C/S on the screen before you.
3 MR. JEREMY: And it's the third paragraph on the screen in
5 Q. It reads as follows:
6 "With the coming of war and the new conditions, but still
7 adhering to the goal of creating a Serbian state, the work of the
8 Serbian Democratic Party naturally evolved into a series of duties and
9 actions which served to prepare, organise, and provide the Serbian people
10 with the means of guaranteeing their safety in Bosnia and Herzegovina,
11 making them ready for a bitter battle with the other two peoples - the
12 Muslims, if they are -- if indeed they are a people (THEY ARE NOT), and
13 the Croats who have forever carried in their genes a sick, a pathological
14 desire and urge to kill those better, more honest, and - do we need to
15 say this - stronger than they are. It has always been like that."
16 Mr. Tadic, you shared Mr. Rasula's views on Muslims and Croats;
18 A. His wording was much harder, much fiercer. My position is the
19 position of faith. It is a fact that in all world wars, the Muslims and
20 Croats turned on the Serbs and they always leaned towards
21 Austria-Hungary, Turkey, and Germany, and this time around America.
22 America took upon itself the role previously held by Germany in
23 World War II on the eve of World War III.
24 Q. Sir, I think we have a part of this in your statement and I'll
25 come to it and you'll have an opportunity to address it. Now, from the
1 answer that you just provided, I understand that you considered the words
2 of Mr. Rasula to be stronger than the words that you would use. But
3 substantively in terms of the gist of what we read here, do you agree or
4 do you disagree with Mr. Rasula's position?
5 A. I do not agree with his wording and the way he used those words,
6 but I do agree that there was a danger, a threat to us should they have
7 been able to use force. Thank God they were not able to use force
8 because they left the JNA which in turn resulted in the creation of a
9 Serb army. It was their policy to abandon the JNA and leave Yugoslavia.
10 This enabled the Serbs who remained legally in their state defending the
11 constitutional order of Yugoslavia to get hold of the weapons.
12 Q. Sir --
13 A. That was the only possibility given to the Serbian people.
14 Q. So when Mr. Rasula says that the Muslims are not a people, do you
15 agree -- do you agree with that?
16 A. You see, all documents that we have from the time of war and
17 since refer to Bosniaks, but they are nowhere to be found. They called
18 themselves Muslims before 1991. This shows you that they are confused in
19 their understanding of themselves. Mesa Selimovic who was a Muslim but
20 realised that he had Serb origins said --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, I'm going to stop you there again. You
22 were asked whether you considered the Muslims to be a people or not. You
23 are explaining us how they considered themselves, but the question was
24 whether you considered them to be a people, yes or no. Would you please
25 focus on that.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I respect whatever they say about
2 themselves. If they say they are Bosniaks, I honour that. And I
3 honoured when they called themselves Muslims. But what I think about
4 that is a different matter. I respect someone who respects themselves.
5 JUDGE ORIE: You were asked about whether you have an opinion
6 about that and what that opinion is. And by saying that "I respect
7 whatever they say and my opinion I'll keep it for myself" is not an
8 answer to the question. But that seems to be a pattern, that you're not
9 answering the questions, and I would urge you to answer them.
10 Now, in view of the last few questions put to you by Mr. Jeremy,
11 whether you agreed with the views of Mr. Rasula, you used a lot words.
12 But it's clear, or at least as I read it, and if -- as one could read it,
13 in this text Mr. Rasula, by referring to genes, by referring to
14 pathology, and by referring to the Serbs being better, depicts the
15 Muslims as inferior people. Now, whatever political stance they may have
16 taken in the past, do you agree - apart from the specific language -
17 that -- with Mr. Rasula, that Muslims are inferior to Serbs? Because
18 that's what appears from this text. Do you agree with that?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's why I said it was too
20 hard-line. I would never put it in that way. But it's clear to me where
21 the fear and the hate comes from and how come that they were always
22 against the Serbs. Because these are Serbs who changed their faith and I
23 was -- and they felt sorry once Turkey left.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Do I understand that you do not share the view as
25 expressed by Mr. Rasula in this text that Muslims are inferior to Serbs?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would not use that qualification
3 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Jeremy.
4 MR. JEREMY:
5 Q. Now, sir, I'd like to -- to now move to how you yourself describe
6 Muslims in your statement.
7 MR. JEREMY: But before I do, I'd like to tender that document,
8 the "Informator."
9 JUDGE ORIE: It's 54 pages, Mr. Jeremy. Do we need them all?
10 MR. JEREMY: Your Honours, I think we do need more than the
11 sections that I've had the opportunity to read to the -- to the witness,
12 but I agree that it is a long document and I would propose that it be
13 MFI'd and I will take another look at the document and --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
15 MR. JEREMY: -- work to remove some sections before tendering.
16 JUDGE ORIE: If you please do so because from my last question it
17 appears that just reading it and associating this with the witness might
18 not be fully fair to the witness. So therefore, if you limit yourself to
19 put a few matters to say witness, then to say, well, the whole of it is
20 in evidence may create a suggestion that, since he is on the cover page
21 of this publication, that he would share all what's written in there and
22 that would be perhaps not fully fair.
23 MR. JEREMY: I agree.
24 JUDGE ORIE: We will wait for your further submissions as to what
25 parts, and perhaps you also discuss the matter with Mr. Lukic.
1 MR. JEREMY: Your Honours, I would also note that the witness did
2 say that he contributed to this publication. I accept he hasn't said he
3 contributed to every page, but --
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
5 MR. JEREMY: -- that's how he's testified.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I'm aware of that. That's exactly the reason
7 why I'm cautious. We will hear from you but we already reserve a number.
8 THE REGISTRAR: 06616 receives P7015, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE ORIE: And is marked for identification.
10 Please proceed.
11 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
12 Q. Sir, I'd like now to take a look at your statement in this case.
13 MR. JEREMY: And that's D861. And in particular I'd like to look
14 at paragraph 7, please. It's page 3 in each language.
15 Q. Now, sir, I'd like to focus your attention on -- I'd like --
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy, the Chamber would like you to be aware
17 that it found in paragraph 7 a lot of sweeping statements and not a lot
18 of facts. That's how it was presented. And as you know, the Chamber is
19 interested primarily in receiving evidence on facts and would certainly
20 not encourage further detailed debates about sweeping statements,
21 judgements, opinions, et cetera.
22 Please keep that in the back of your mind.
23 MR. JEREMY: That's understood, Your Honours, and my intention is
24 simply to clarify some parts of that paragraph.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
1 MR. JEREMY:
2 Q. Now, sir, I would like to focus on two aspects of this paragraph
3 which I will read to you and then I will ask you some follow-up
4 questions. Now, six or so lines down we read -- well, you refer to going
5 to Muslim villages and speaking to the persons who were there. Now, I
6 will read what you say in paragraph 7:
7 "My main thesis was Muslims, such as Hudo Kurbegovic" -- excuse
9 "My main thesis was that the Muslims, as Islamicized Serbs, this
10 time as before, would heed the ill-intended West to inflict as much harm
11 as possible on the Orthodox Serbs."
12 And I'd also like to read you a part in the second half of the
13 last sentence reading:
14 "I also told them in advance that no matter how much they
15 understood me at the time, the primal hatred that existed in them towards
16 their kind from whom they broke away by changing religion would still
17 heed the evil and cunning intentions of the West."
18 Now, sir, when you -- when you refer in this paragraph to Muslim
19 villages you're referring to Muslim villages in Sanski Most; yes?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And when you refer to primal hatreds, you're talking about primal
22 hatreds in Muslims towards Serbs; correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And you were touring these Muslim villages in Sanski Most in
25 April and May 1992; yes?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And you were doing so in your capacity as assistant commander for
3 morale and religious affairs in the 6th Brigade; correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thank you. Now, sir, I'd like to move on to a different topic.
6 We can leave this paragraph.
7 Now, sir, you are aware that in early November 1992, nine
8 civilians from Skrljevita village were murdered in Sanski Most?
9 Sir, should I repeat the question?
10 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You should wait for the interpretation to be
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I didn't understand it.
13 MR. JEREMY: Okay, forgive me.
14 Q. Sir, are you aware that in early November 1992, nine civilians
15 from Skrljevita were murdered? They were shot. You're aware of that,
17 A. I cannot remember that now. If there is a document or anything
18 that would confirm that, perhaps I could. Is that the case where
19 Danilusko committed these killings?
20 Q. Yes, that's one of them. Does that refresh your recollection?
21 A. Yes, yes.
22 Q. Now having had your recollection refreshed, do you recall
23 discussing this event at a meeting of the Sanski Most Executive Committee
24 on the 10th of November, 1992?
25 A. I cannot remember. If there is a document that I could see,
1 perhaps then I could.
2 Q. Yes.
3 MR. JEREMY: Could we please take a look at such a document.
4 It's 65 ter 31785.
5 Q. And, sir, while that's being brought up, I can tell you that they
6 are the minutes of the extraordinary session of the Executive Committee
7 of the Municipal Assembly of Sanski Most, and they are dated the
8 10th of November, 1992.
9 So, sir, on the screen before us we have those minutes. And we
10 see that they are indeed dated the 10th of November, 1992, so nine days
11 or so after the events in Skrljevita. And I will note that ten or so
12 lines down we see -- we read that:
13 "In addition to the members of the Executive Committee, the
14 session was also attended by ..."
15 And we have a list of attendees including Boro Tadic. That would
16 have been you; correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Now, I'd like to focus your attention on some comments that we
19 see from Mirko Vrucinic.
20 MR. JEREMY: And if we could go to page 2 in the B/C/S, please.
21 Q. Now, sir, Mirko Vrucinic was the chief of the Sanski Most Public
22 Security Station; correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Now, in the third sentence below his name, we read that:
25 "On the 1st of November, 1992, nine members of Skrljevita village
1 were killed. They were ordinary people who were not extremists; the
2 motive was retaliation for the fallen soldiers from Krihare."
3 Now, sir, does that refresh your recollection of this meeting?
4 I saw you -- you nodded, could you articulate an answer for the
6 A. Yes, I'm getting into this bit by bit.
7 Q. Okay.
8 MR. JEREMY: Could we please go to page 2 in the English and
9 page 3 in the B/C/S.
10 Q. And I'd like to show you some comments from Vlado Vrkes. And
11 these are near the top of the page.
12 MR. JEREMY: And page 3 in the B/C/S.
13 Q. And five or six lines from below his name. We read --
14 MR. JEREMY: And, I'm sorry, in the English it's two-thirds of
15 the way down on page 2.
16 Q. And we see there that he suggests that a visit should be paid to
17 General Talic to inform him about all these acts, and we see that he
19 "Proceedings have to be instituted against perpetrators of these
20 unlawful acts."
21 And I would like to look at the conclusions from this meeting.
22 MR. JEREMY: If we could please go to page 4 in the English and 5
23 in the B/C/S.
24 Q. And about halfway down the page we see a list of conclusions. I
25 would like to focus on number 2, where we read:
1 "Arrange a visit to the Command of the 1st Krajina Corps...," and
2 "... inform the corps commander about the situation of the
3 municipality ..."
4 It goes on and lists the names of the delegation. And,
5 Mr. Tadic, you're listed as one of those members of the delegation in
6 your capacity as chief of the Sanski Most department of the Ministry of
7 Defence. Can you confirm that you were in fact part of that delegation
8 that went to see General Talic?
9 A. [No interpretation]
10 Q. Sir, could you --
11 JUDGE ORIE: I -- yes, I heard the witness answer the question
12 but there was no interpretation.
13 MR. JEREMY:
14 Q. Sir, could you repeat your answer, please?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Now, that delegation discussed with General Talic these events in
17 Skrljevita; correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And do you recall General Talic's position in respect of these
21 A. I cannot recall that, no.
22 Q. Now, this Court has received evidence that of the four men
23 accused of these events, two of them - Goran Vukojevic and Todo Vukic -
24 were under 18 at the time of the events. So they were minors. Now, were
25 you or are you aware that two of those men were under 18 at the time of
1 these events in Skrljevita?
2 A. This is the first time that I'm hearing of it. I mean, I didn't
3 really follow that much. But any incident or any killing really caused
4 me a lot of pain, not only because of the other peoples but also because
5 of my own people, because of the fact that nothing would be left except
7 Q. Sir, I'd like to show you a document in connection with these two
9 MR. JEREMY: And could we please see 65 ter 16467.
10 And, Your Honours, I'd like to tender those minutes that we just
11 saw, 65 ter 31785.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Document 31785 receives Exhibit Number P7016,
14 Your Honours.
15 JUDGE ORIE: P7016 is admitted into evidence.
16 MR. JEREMY: Thank you.
17 Q. Now, sir, we see on our screens before us a document from the
18 Banja Luka military court. It's dated the 9th of December, 1992. And we
19 see in the top right corner of the original the stamp of the military
20 prosecutor's office and the 1st Krajina Corps command. Now, in the first
21 paragraph we -- we see that the investigating judge of the Banja Luka
22 military court in the case of Kajtez et al. has decided to sever the case
23 against Goran Vukojevic and Todo Vokic.
24 MR. JEREMY: If we can go to page 2 in the English, please.
25 Q. And next to Roman numeral II, halfway down the page in the B/C/S,
1 towards the top of the page in the English, we read:
2 "The severed case files relating to underage Goran Vukojevic and
3 Todo Vokic are passed onto the authority of a judge for minors of the
4 Sanski Most lower court for special proceedings pursuant to provisions in
5 the 27th chapter of the Law on Criminal Procedure."
6 Now, sir, seeing this document does that refresh your
7 recollection about these proceedings?
8 A. Actually, I only now understand it. I thought that we were
9 talking about those who were killed but were under 18, but on the basis
10 of this I understand that this is about those who actually committed the
11 killing but were under 18. I don't know very much about it. I know very
12 little about it. I was informed about it then at the Executive Board
13 meeting, and I was in that delegation. And I'm sure I said the kind of
14 things that I would say now, that this was a -- a major evil that we
15 Serbs were committing against ourselves. I always said the same thing,
16 and I can see that this was committed by two persons who were under 18.
17 I'm only now getting that fact.
18 But I really wasn't all that much involved in this because I was
19 working in the Ministry of Defence section that was dealing with the
20 mobilisation of people and assets, and I had so much work to do that I
21 didn't have time to get involved in other things that were not part of my
22 job description. But I welcomed every act that Republika Srpska carried
23 out against the evil within ourselves.
24 Q. Sir, you mentioned in your lengthy answer that you were, among
25 other things, responsible for mobilisation. Now, you were aware or are
1 you aware that despite the charges against Goran Vukojevic, he was the
2 very next year mobilised into the VRS?
3 A. I don't know. We did have records of young men who were 17 and
4 recruited, and it's possible that he, like all the others, was entered
5 into the records and recruited into the Army of Republika Srpska. This
6 could easily be the case.
7 MR. JEREMY: I'd like to go to one such record, and before I do,
8 Your Honours, could I tender that document.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Document 16467 receives Exhibit Number P7017,
11 Your Honours.
12 JUDGE ORIE: P7017 is admitted.
13 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
14 Could we please see 65 ter 06514.
15 Q. And, sir, as this is being brought up I can tell you it's a
16 stamped certificate issued by the RS Ministry of Defence, Sanski Most
17 department certifying that Goran Vukojevic served in the forces in
18 Banja Luka during a particular period.
19 So we now have the certificate on the screen before us. And we
20 see it is from the Republika Srpska Ministry of Defence, department of
21 Sanski Most. We see the date is the 15th of December, 1994. And we see
22 that it -- the document is issued at the request of Vukojevic, Goran,
23 from Kruhari. And there is a certificate. It certified that
24 Goran Vukojevic from Kruhari, born in 1975, served in the military
25 service in the period from 18th of June, 1993, to the 21st of February,
1 1994. And his unit is listed. And we read that he is still engaged as a
2 member of reserve formation. And we read that the certificate is issued
3 and used for and then we read "justification of absence at the court
4 procedure in Banja Luka," and it's signed by Chief Boro Tadic.
5 So firstly, Mr. Tadic, do you recall signing this particular
7 A. I signed thousands of documents, but it's a sure thing that I did
8 not sign anything that was inaccurate because I see on the basis of this
9 that he served his regular term of duty and that he asked for leave and
10 he was granted what he was requesting. And it's true that according to
11 this document he did serve his regular military term of duty in that
12 time-period, and perhaps he was getting summonses, but it seems that he
13 needed that in order for him to justify his absence from the trial. But
14 I see that this certificate was issued with that intention. But it does
15 confirm the fact that during that time-period he was a member of the
17 Q. So, sir, on the basis of your answer do I understand it correctly
18 that it was the case that even if criminal proceedings had been initiated
19 against you for an event as serious as the events in Skrljevita, military
20 service could excuse you from those proceedings; is that correct?
21 A. A witness is not somebody -- oh, a person is not guilty unless
22 it's proven or unless they've been sentenced. So they are expected to
23 carry out their regular duties, the things they need to do in life. And
24 probably because he was not in detention, he was free, and so he could
25 not have been considered guilty, regardless of the indictment, until the
1 trial had been finished. So if he had responded to the summons, he did
2 what he needed to do. Had he been in detention, had he been in
3 investigative prison, then this kind of thing could not have happened.
4 Q. But, sir, this document, as I read it, is justifying the absence
5 of Goran Vukojevic from the court procedure in Banja Luka. So at least
6 on face value it suggests to me that there were proceedings that were
7 going on but Mr. Vukojevic wasn't present at those proceedings because
8 instead he was serving in the VRS?
9 A. Yes. Probably he was summoned during the time that he was
10 serving his military term of duty. I cannot remember the details right
11 now. But by that logic, while he was serving in the military he received
12 a summons. That is what would be logical. But I cannot recall any
14 Q. But, sir, my question very simply is: The fact is -- if he did
15 receive a summons, was the fact that he was serving in the military a
16 sufficient reason for him not to respond to that summons?
17 JUDGE ORIE: You're asking for judgement, Mr. Jeremy. So please
18 rephrase your question.
19 MR. JEREMY: Your Honours, I'm actually prepared to rely on the
20 answers that I've already got from the witness on this particular
22 JUDGE ORIE: Then put your next question to the witness. Perhaps
23 after the break because we're at the time for a break. Are you on
24 schedule as far as time is concerned, Mr. Jeremy?
25 MR. JEREMY: Yes, Your Honours. I estimated two and a half hours
1 and I hope I will come in somewhere under that.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You indicated two hours.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Well, that's at least what was our information, that
4 you asked for two hours, but please verify that. And I do understand
5 that you would certainly not need two and a half hours, which --
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Do you tender this document which is on the
8 MR. JEREMY: I do, Your Honours.
9 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Document 06514 receives Exhibit P7018,
12 Your Honours.
13 JUDGE ORIE: P7018 is admitted into evidence.
14 Mr. Tadic, we would like to see you back in 20 minutes from now.
15 You may follow the usher.
16 [The witness stands down]
17 MR. JEREMY: Your Honours, just to respond to the question that
18 you asked of me a moment ago. We revised the time for this witness up to
19 two and a half hours via e-mail on the 10th of December at 1528.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Then we may have missed that.
21 MR. JEREMY: [Overlapping speakers] -- an informal communication.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We may have missed that. And we'll now take a
23 break and the time estimate is that we'll resume at quarter past 12.00.
24 --- Recess taken at 11.56 a.m.
25 --- On resuming at 12.21 p.m.
1 MR. TIEGER: Mr. President, I'm so sorry.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger.
3 MR. TIEGER: I mistakenly understood or assumed that you had been
4 advised that there were two preliminary matters and I'm very sorry about
5 that. One of those should be raised in private session. If it's too
6 late now, we can do it at the next session. But in any event, there will
7 be two matters to raise in response -- both of which are in response to
8 earlier Court inquiries.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Perhaps it's not the best moment to -- when
10 the witness will enter the courtroom, but perhaps we could take the next
11 break a bit earlier and then do it at the end of this session.
12 MR. TIEGER: Very well. Thank you.
13 MR. JEREMY: Your Honours, just to --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy.
15 MR. JEREMY: Just to make you aware, during this session it may
16 be that I ask you to draw the witness's attention to his rights under
17 Rule 90(E).
18 JUDGE ORIE: Just indicate the moment. As you know that we
19 usually leave it to the parties who know what questions will be put to
20 the witness, whether it's appropriate or not to give him a 90(E) warning.
21 MR. JEREMY: Your Honours, for planning purposes I anticipate
22 finishing within under 45 minutes from now.
23 [The witness takes the stand]
24 JUDGE ORIE: Then we would still have time for the other matters.
25 Mr. Jeremy, you may proceed.
1 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
2 Q. Now, sir, the civilian protection staff in Sanski Most formed
3 part of the national defence and were therefore part of your
4 responsibility; correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And among other things, the civilian protection staff were
7 responsible for burials of human remains found in Sanski Most during the
8 war period; correct?
9 A. We have to differentiate here. I was responsible for
10 mobilisation of personnel and material assets for the civilian
11 protection, but I was not authorised to decide on the use of civilian
12 protection units or those of the army or those for the obligatory work
13 duty. So my job was to provide the personnel or assets to the civilian
14 protection army and the work-duty units, but those who were carrying out
15 their orders received from higher levels would carry out the assignments.
16 This applied to the army, which had its command, to the enterprises,
17 which had their directors and management system, and the same applied to
18 the civilian protection, which had its own commander who carried out
19 these duties pursuant to the law and the regulations.
20 Q. But, sir, generally speaking, you were aware of the activities
21 that were carried out by the civilian protection force in Sanski Most;
23 A. Sometimes I would be there at a briefing when civilian protection
24 tasks were discussed at the Executive Board. Since I attended the
25 Executive Board sessions only when it pertained to things that had to do
1 with the Ministry of Defence, it's possible that I was sometimes present
2 when issues regarding the use of civilian protection were discussed. I'm
3 not quite sure about it right now. I don't recall the details, but
4 perhaps if there are any documents you can show me, then perhaps we could
5 discuss those issues.
6 Q. Yes. We'll take a look at some documents, sir.
7 MR. JEREMY: And the first one, please, is 65 ter 06444.
8 Q. And while this is being brought up, Mr. Tadic, I can tell you
9 that it's a report about activities of civilian protection headquarters
10 Sanski Most municipality during the period from 15th of July, 1992, to
11 the 15th of October, 1992.
12 MR. JEREMY: Now, could we please go to page 3 in each language.
13 Q. And, Mr. Tadic, as you'll see, the B/C/S document is not as
14 legible as one would hope, so I'd ask you for your patience. Now, sir,
15 I'd like to direct your attention to the paragraph numbered number 1
16 towards the top of the page: "Demolition and sanitation of residential
17 buildings." Now, we see a reference to a joint action of the civilian
18 protection staff and the municipal Ministry for National Defence
19 connecting to a list being made of able-bodied men between 17 to 60.
20 That reference to the municipal Ministry for National Defence, that was
21 part of your responsibility; correct? That's a reference to your
22 department. I see you're nodding. Could you verbalize --
23 A. This is a confirmation of what I have just said. It was my duty
24 to note down the population that could become part or used in the work of
25 the civilian protection. The mobilising of them and passing them on to
1 the units of civilian protection or the civilian protection commander so
2 that they could be used, that was my part. And this is confirmed by this
3 paragraph here, that we did this in co-operation. We worked together on
5 Q. Thank you, sir.
6 MR. JEREMY: And could we please zoom in on paragraph -- this
7 paragraph 1, please; particularly, in the B/C/S.
8 Q. Sir, I'd like to look at the last sentence of that. If you can
9 read it.
10 MR. JEREMY: Could we perhaps widen the page a little bit, if
11 possible, for the B/C/S. No.
12 Q. Sir, it reads as follows:
13 "The brigades worked on the demolition and sanitation of
14 residential and religious buildings in the following inhabited areas."
15 Now, the religious buildings being referred to here are mosques;
17 A. I cannot see it here. Is that paragraph 1, item 1?
18 Q. It's the last sentence of paragraph 1 towards the top of the
19 page. Sir, if you can't read that sentence, then I won't ask you to
20 comment on it.
21 A. The only thing that I can say, judging by what I understand here,
22 even though you can't even read it, is that those units were engaged on
23 clearing up the consequences of something that was done. For example,
24 something that was beyond repair. It was demolished, needed to be
25 cleared up so that it would not pose a danger to the people. And the
1 things that could be repaired would be repaired. This is how I
2 understood it.
3 The demolition and sanitation of -- so something that had already
4 been demolished in an action by whoever did that. So that there would be
5 no safety problems, it had to be completely demolished if it couldn't be
6 used anymore or it could not be rebuilt; whereas things that were just
7 slightly damaged could be repaired and used again. This is how I
8 understood what is written -- how I understand what is written here.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Tadic, actually you're not being asked to tell
10 us what you understand but tell us what you read there if you are able to
11 read it. We can always give the interpretations that we want to give,
12 but the question really is, and the answer should be very short: Can you
13 read it, and read it if you can. Because now you are putting words into
14 this statement which are not there.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "The demolition and sanitation of
16 housing and religious buildings ..."
17 And now there is a part that's difficult. It says "brigades" but
18 this other word is difficult. "Construction." I think that's what it
19 says. "Construction Brigade" or "Brigades," something like that.
20 "Housing Units, Construction Brigades." Something like that.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you. Thank you so much.
22 MR. JEREMY:
23 Q. Sir, this Trial Chamber has received evidence that at least
24 18 mosques were destroyed in Sanski Most during the period of 1992 to
25 1995. Were you aware of that?
1 A. I was. And I passed by and I could see demolished mosques. I
2 did witness that mosques were demolished. I saw that.
3 Q. And did you see who it was who demolished those mosques?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Now, I'd like to look at another part of this document.
6 MR. JEREMY: And that's in the paragraph below the one that we've
7 just been looking at. And unfortunately, it's also not the clearest.
8 Q. So, sir, at the bottom --
9 MR. JEREMY: If we could stop there.
10 Q. -- just before B on the screen, there is a sentence that I would
11 like to -- to read -- or I'll read a few sentences up from there, and the
12 subheading of this paragraph is: "In the Town." So we read:
13 "Simultaneously with these activities a considerable amount of
14 time was spent removing debris from the town mosque. These activities
15 are still underway and the exhumation and dislocation of the cemetery
16 next to the town mosque will begin after the adoption of appropriate
17 decisions in the municipal assembly. The machinery that exists in the
18 6th Brigade was also used in these activities."
19 So, sir, we see here that the civil protection headquarters of
20 Sanski Most is anticipating a decision in the municipal assembly to
21 exhume and dislocate the cemetery next to the town mosque. Now, my first
22 question: That cemetery was a Muslim cemetery; correct?
23 A. Yes, probably, next to the mosque.
24 Q. And the decision to exhume that cemetery was, in fact,
25 subsequently taken in February 1993; correct?
1 A. It's possible. It's possible.
2 Q. I'd like to show you a document in connection with that.
3 MR. JEREMY: But before I do, Your Honours, I'd like to tender
4 this document but I -- because the B/C/S is illegible, then I would
5 propose that we MFI the document and we'll -- I will go into the evidence
6 unit and try and find a more legible document.
7 JUDGE ORIE: That would be appreciated. Apparently someone was
8 able to read it, otherwise you couldn't translate it. And -- but, as you
9 are suggesting, we'll MFI it.
10 Madam Registrar.
11 THE REGISTRAR: Document 06444 receives P7019, Your Honours.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Is marked for identification.
13 Witness, the last question was about a decision taken in
14 February 1993 to exhume and relocate. You said you don't remember.
15 Don't you remember the date or don't you remember that such a decision
16 was taken?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was not a member of the assembly.
18 I wasn't a member of the party, of any other party, neither the
19 Serbian Democratic Party or any other political party.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, I was not asking whether you were a member
21 of a party. I was asking you whether you were uncertain about that such
22 a decision was taken, sometimes you can know that even if you are not a
23 member of the organ that takes a decision, or that you are uncertain
24 about the date. That was my question.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am talking about how I didn't
1 attend sessions very often. I could have been invited only when
2 questions were discussed from my remit. So I cannot remember this,
3 unless there is a document that would help me to remember what that was
4 about. I was not a member of the assembly. I only attended when I was
5 summoned, when issues were discussed that I was responsible for. I mean,
6 it's possible that I did attend. But if there is a document, then I
7 can --
8 JUDGE ORIE: But it is about whether you knew, not about were you
9 responsible, whether or not you attended. Do you know that a decision
10 was taken or do you not know? Your memory --
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know. I don't --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Okay.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't remember as I sit here
15 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
16 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
17 Q. Witness, I will see if I can refresh your recollection.
18 MR. JEREMY: Could we please see 65 ter 31788.
19 Q. And, sir, coming on to our screens are the minutes of the
20 7th Session of the Executive Committee of the Municipal Assembly of
21 Sanski Most. And they are dated the 25th of February, 1993. We see
22 those minutes on the screen before us. And I note in the fourth
23 paragraph that:
24 "In addition to the members of the Executive Committee, the
25 following invitees were present ..."
1 And the penultimate name is Boro Tadic. Now, sir, that would
2 have been you; correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Okay.
5 MR. JEREMY: Could we please go to page 3 of these minutes.
6 Q. Now, sir, my first question. Just above item 3, we see the final
7 bullet point is that the work of commission be updated regarding the
8 changing of the street names, squares, and public institutions. Sir,
9 this is a reference to changing the street names, squares, and public
10 institutions that contained Muslim names to Serb names; correct?
11 A. I suppose so. Everybody did that in the same way. Muslims would
12 delete Serb names and the other way around.
13 Q. Sir, I'm asking you about what you did in Sanski Most and what
14 this executive body did. So is that what they are indeed doing, they are
15 changing names from Muslim origin to Serb names?
16 A. That was updating the work of the -- of the commission for
17 renaming of the streets. I don't know whether it was ever done. I
18 suppose there is a report to that effect, to show whether the update was
19 implemented or not. This is just about the updating of the work of that
20 commission. Effectively, it was operational, it existed, and its work
21 was being updated with this. This is how I understand things.
22 Q. I understand it's a reference to an update. But just very
23 simply, when you read this reference to the changing of street names,
24 squares, and public institutions, do you understand this to be the
25 changing of those names from Muslim names to Serb names?
1 A. I suppose that there were such cases as well.
2 MR. JEREMY: Could we please go to page 7 in the English and 6 in
3 the B/C/S. And I would like to focus on item 9 when we get there.
4 Q. Now, under item 9, sir, we read:
5 "The Chairman opened the discussion topic - endorsing draft
6 decision on exhumation of mortal remains from the cemetery in the Centre
7 (next to the mosque) and the cemetery in Zdena (in the vicinity of Sip).
8 "Since there were no participants in the discussion, pursuant to
9 the proposal of the Chairman, the Executive Committee made the following
11 "1. The draft decision on exhumation of mortal remains from the
12 cemetery in the centre (next to the mosque) and the cemetery in Zdena (in
13 the vicinity of Sip) is endorsed."
14 Mr. Tadic, the locations referred to here are Muslim cemeteries;
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And the goal of this decision was to remove traces of Muslims in
18 Sanski Most; correct?
19 A. I don't know the details. For some reason that was done. But
20 about destroying any traces, you can't destroy traces, can you? I really
21 don't see it that way.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, if you have any doubts, what, in your view,
23 was the reason to do this? What was discussed or not discussed? What
24 was the underlying reason to?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't say anything about that.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Well, if --
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I really was not that much involved
3 in all that.
4 JUDGE ORIE: You have no idea, although it was scheduled that
5 meeting, it apparently was an issue that was decided there, but you say:
6 I've got no idea what it was for?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was no discussion at all.
8 There was never a discussion on that issue. And why things were done, if
9 they were, I don't know any details. It was not within my remit and I
10 didn't get involved in all that at all.
11 JUDGE ORIE: I'm not asking about details. I'm asking about what
12 the purpose of exhumation of mortal remains was, from these cemeteries.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't --
14 JUDGE ORIE: If I understand you well, you were taken by
15 surprise. You have no idea why -- well, quite an operational thing would
16 have happened at that point in time with that purpose?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't explain.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Next question, please.
19 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
20 I'd like to tender --
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Could we look at the list of attendees of this
22 meeting, please.
23 MR. JEREMY: Yes. Could we go back to page 1, please.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sir, you say you were not involved in this. You
25 were not part of it. But were you not a member of this meeting, were you
1 not a part of this meeting?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was invited to the meeting of the
3 Executive Board because of --
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm not asking you how -- just hold it.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- item 4 --
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just hold it. I'm not asking you how you came
7 there, whether by invitation or what. You were part of the meeting,
8 isn't it?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much. And you -- and part of the
11 meeting endorsed the decision, whether it was discussed or not discussed?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not vote. I was a guest.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm not asking whether you voted. I'm saying the
14 meeting endorsed that decision, although it was not discussed.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. Yes, you can see that
16 from the record of the meeting.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Jeremy.
19 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours. I would like to tender
20 those minutes as the next Prosecution exhibit.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Document 31788 receives Exhibit P7020,
23 Your Honours.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
25 MR. JEREMY:
1 Q. Now, Mr. Tadic, given your responsibilities, were you aware that
2 in 1994 the Banja Luka State Security Department also suggested that
3 efforts were made to excavate Muslim mass graves?
4 A. No.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy, I'm puzzled by the use of the word
6 "also." We saw a decision on exhumation of mortal remains from a
7 cemetery, not from any mass graves. So the "also" in the mass grave
8 puzzles me.
9 MR. JEREMY: Yes, Your Honour. And I'd just rephrase the
10 question and I remove the "also" reference which I concede was
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please proceed.
13 MR. JEREMY:
14 Q. So, sir, given your responsibilities, were you aware that in
15 1994, the Banja Luka State Security Department suggested that efforts
16 were made to excavate Muslim mass graves?
17 A. No, no, I'm not abreast of that.
18 MR. JEREMY: Can we see 65 ter 31795.
19 Q. Sir, on our screens is a document from the state security
20 department of Banja Luka, Prijedor detachment, and we see that it's dated
21 28th of March, 1994. And it's an Official Note. Now, in the first
22 paragraph we read that:
23 "During 1992 there were several armed clashes with Muslim
24 paramilitary formations in the Sanski Most area, concentrated mainly in
25 the villages of Vrhpolje, Hrustovo, Trnovo, Lukavica, and Modra."
1 Now, sir, you were aware of those locations in Sanski Most;
3 A. I know. I know these places.
4 Q. Now, I understand from your Karadzic testimony that you were not
5 present during the operations by the 6th Brigade at the end of May and at
6 the start of June in, for example, Vrhpolje and Hrustovo; is that
8 A. I was not present.
9 Q. Okay. Now in the next paragraph we see the following. We see a
10 reference to Muslim extremists who have moved members of their family to
11 other areas before the outbreak of those clashes, and we read that they
12 were killed in this fighting. We read:
13 "Because of this, they were buried in common graves by members of
14 their own people, neighbours, and other people employed by the competent
16 Now, those "other persons employed by the competent organs" would
17 have included the civil defence, civil protection unit; correct?
18 A. I can't say anything. I guess that organisation was there.
19 Q. Now, we read:
20 "Following the cessation of fighting in these areas, some people
21 took part in burying those killed left our area in convoys, on release
22 from the Manjaca camp and in other ways."
23 And it goes on to say that their information has been used as
24 Muslim propaganda, Muslim media propaganda to increase pressure against
25 Serbian people.
1 MR. JEREMY: Can we go to the next page in the English, please.
2 Q. Now, sir, in the final sentence we read that the -- the state
3 security department measures, as a suggestion we read:
4 To counter such occurrences and to prevent in good time the use
5 of such events for propaganda purposes and pressure on the Serbian
6 people, we believe that it is necessary to suggest that the relevant
7 institutions activate the competent organs in Sanski Most to sanitize the
8 locations in question.
9 Now, sir, this last paragraph is about hiding Muslim mass graves;
11 A. That's one way of interpreting it. However, I was not at all the
12 involved in all that. Therefore, I have nothing to say about it. There
13 was a lot of propaganda, that is true. And every shortcoming on our
14 side - and there was some, of course - was used in propaganda and to
15 increase pressure on the Serbian people instead of those who created the
16 evil and caused the war.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, the question was about what was envisaged
18 to be done. Your answer is not about that apart from the beginning where
19 you said: "That's one way of interpreting it." However, you were not at
20 all involved in that. May I take it then also that you mean to say by
21 that that you have no knowledge about it?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't remember. Because this
23 word, "sanitization" --
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. If you don't remember, you don't remember.
25 You don't have to explain why you don't remember. You don't --
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't remember.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy.
3 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours. I would like to tender
4 that document as the next Prosecution exhibit.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Document 31795 receives Exhibit Number P7021,
7 Your Honours.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
9 MR. JEREMY:
10 Q. Now, Mr. Tadic, in your capacity as the head of the Ministry of
11 Defence in -- of Republika Srpska in Sanski Most, you were responsible
12 for work obligation in the municipality; correct?
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. And those non-Serbs that remained in Sanski Most during the war
15 period were subject to the work obligation; correct?
16 A. For a while they were not. Security conditions would not allow
17 for that. When it was decided that things could be arranged and that
18 people could be engaged safely, the Ministry of Defence of
19 Republika Srpska issued an order to that effect. There were priorly set
20 up obligation units and Serbs were mobilised into companies and
21 institutions and so on and so forth. However, when it was assessed that
22 Muslims and Croats could be engaged and that security issues could easily
23 be avoided, that no major incidents could be expected, we wanted to
24 include them and incorporate them to everyday life.
25 Q. Okay. I'd like to look at a document in connection with those
1 duties that you performed and in relation to these work obligations.
2 MR. JEREMY: Could we please see 65 ter 31792.
3 Q. And, sir, this is a report which I think you'll recognise. It's
4 dated the 5th of October, 1994.
5 MR. JEREMY: If we could go to page 2, please, in each language.
6 Q. And, sir, we see your name at the bottom of the page and your
7 signature. Do you recognise your signature?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 MR. JEREMY: Could we go back to page 1, please.
11 Q. Now, sir, we see that this is a letter from the RS Ministry of
12 Defence, Banja Luka district, department of Sanski Most. Dated the
13 5th of October, 1994. It's addressed to the Executive Board of
14 Sanski Most municipality -- sorry, Municipal Assembly, and to the command
15 of the Sana 6th Infantry Brigade. Now, the subject is: "Deployment of
16 Work Obligation Units."
17 I would like to look at one or two paragraphs of this document.
18 In the first paragraph we read that:
19 "Over the past 16 months, the Ministry of Defence Department of
20 Sanski Most has deployed work obligation units consisting of non-Serbs,
21 as requested by the VRS and various enterprises, institutions, and
23 In the next paragraph, in the second sentence, we read that:
24 "... units comprising non-Serbs began to be utilised," and in the
25 sentence before we see from May 1993, "while the other units made up of
1 Serbs never were."
2 And now, sir, you were responsible for this -- these
3 mobilisations of these non-Serbs; correct?
4 A. This is about me being tasked with mobilising people with --
5 talking to them about their future work. And in the second text, it says
6 that the utilisation of those units should be handed over to the
7 Executive Board because, pursuant to that order, they were supposed to
8 implement that work. We were in charge of mobilising and sending people
9 to various places on requests by the military, by the civilian
10 protection, by various institutions and so on and so forth.
11 And here, I really don't understand this sentence. I know that
12 Serbs were utilised. I don't see why it says "while the other units made
13 up of Serbs never were." I really can't make a logical link because I
14 know that there were, i.e. the Serbs were, in work obligation units and
15 they were deployed wherever needed in all the institutions that requested
16 them; whereas Muslims were not before the conditions were put in place
17 for them to participate without expecting any major issues. That is why
18 the units that had been set up were dispatched on the requests of the
19 military, companies, and other institutions. And here the point of all
20 this, of this report, is that the Executive Board should be more involved
21 in the utilisation of those units. I can see that there were not enough
22 people employed for that purpose.
23 Q. Sir, do you have any reason to doubt the authenticity of the
24 original document that you see on the screen before you, the copy of the
25 original document?
1 A. No, no, I don't have a reason for that.
2 MR. JEREMY: Now, could we please go to page 3 in each language.
3 Q. Now, sir, this is a table and it is headed: "Overview of
4 Deployment of the Work Obligation Units Composed of Non-Serbs in the
5 Municipality of Sanski Most." And down the left side we see the various
6 locations from which non-Serbs originated and the right side we see the
7 total of those persons from those locations and that total runs into the
9 Now, sir, it was your task to select from the available
10 population of non-Serbs in Sanski Most those persons who you considered
11 fit for various jobs and to send them along to perform those jobs;
13 A. Yes.
14 MR. JEREMY: Now, Your Honours, before I ask the witness the next
15 question, I wonder if it's -- I'd ask that you inform the witness of his
16 rights --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
18 MR. JEREMY: -- under Rule 90(E).
19 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, in view of the next questions that will be
20 put to you, Mr. Jeremy asked me to inform you about the following.
21 Rule 90(E) of our Rules of Procedure and Evidence reads as
23 "A witness may object to making any statement which might tend to
24 incriminate the witness. The Chamber may, however, compel the witness to
25 answer the question. Testimony compelled in this way shall not be used
1 as evidence in a subsequent prosecution against the witness for any
2 offence other than false testimony."
3 In short, if a truthful answer to any of the questions that will
4 follow would possibly be incriminating for yourself, you may address me
5 and ask to be relieved from answering that question. Is that clear?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it is. Yes.
7 JUDGE ORIE: You may proceed, Mr. Jeremy.
8 MR. JEREMY:
9 Q. Now, Mr. Tadic, of the jobs that you sent non-Serbs to complete,
10 you sent a number of those non-Serbs to the front line to, for example,
11 dig trenches, and in doing so you sent many non-Serbs to their deaths;
13 A. It is just like using a Serb to send him to the army. It was
14 wartime --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Witness --
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- and there was a need --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, simple question: Did you send a number of
18 those non-Serbs to the front line? That's the question.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, sending somebody to the
22 regular military. Now, where that person is going to be utilised, it's
23 up to the military. It was at the request of the military, a certain
24 number of people were engaged and sent to various commands. For example,
25 companies, both socially owned and private companies, relied on the same
1 system. Just like Serbs were mobilised into the military, Muslims,
2 Croats, or whoever were mobilised at the request of the army, and they
3 were handed over to the organisation that requested them, either the
4 military or a private company or a socially owned company. From that
5 moment on it is those companies that requested them that decided how to
6 use them.
7 JUDGE ORIE: And would they -- a number of them be sent to the
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Quite possible. It is possible
10 that they were used by the military for certain tasks.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Witness --
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Either the delivery of food and
13 water or --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Witness, that's not what you were asked. So
15 you say it's possible that they were sent to the front. Do you have any
16 knowledge whether they were sent there and had to dig trenches? If you
17 have knowledge, please tell us. If you don't have any knowledge, please
18 tell us as well.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know that they were deployed in
20 that way, but I don't know anything specific. I know that I handed them
21 over to the military, to be used by the military. And it says in this
22 table here. It says in the table the military, the front line.
23 JUDGE ORIE: You said: "I know they were deployed in that
24 way ..." My question was about digging trenches. Do I understand you to
25 say that they were deployed in, perhaps among other things, also in
1 digging trenches?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have no knowledge, no details. I
3 can't confirm any of this.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then the last part of the question was
5 whether you know whether some persons sent to the military under this
6 work obligation, whether they did not return because they died?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Many returned -- actually, many
8 dead Serbian soldiers returned. There were many things going on on a
9 daily basis. People being killed left and right --
10 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, why not answer my question. My question
11 was whether some of those who were sent there under the work obligation
12 to the army, whether some of them did not return because they died. I am
13 not asking who returned, but I'm asking whether some did not return
14 because they had died when fulfilling that obligation.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've no specific knowledge.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
17 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honours.
18 Q. Sir, you earlier confirmed today that you testified in the
19 Karadzic case and that the answers you gave in that case were truthful.
20 I'd like to show you a portion of your testimony in that case.
21 MR. JEREMY: Could we please see 65 ter 31781 on our screens.
22 And I'd like to tender the document we were just looking at.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Document 31792 receives Exhibit Number P7022,
25 Your Honours.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
2 MR. JEREMY: And could we go to page 48, please.
3 Q. And, sir, I'm afraid we don't have a B/C/S translation of this
4 transcript, so you'll need to listen to the translation. I'll read out
5 the portion I want you to pay attention to and it will be translated to
7 And, sir, I'm going to focus on questions that were put to you in
8 relation to the same document that we have just looked at, just one
9 question and your answer.
10 MR. JEREMY: So if we could focus on -- into line 7 and below,
12 Q. And we see that the Prosecutor asked you the following question:
13 "Q. Sending them wherever they were needed included sending them
14 to the front line and sending them to clear minefields and sending them
15 to their deaths; isn't that correct?"
16 Your answer:
17 "I sent many more Serbs to their deaths. This is all about
18 113 people being sent to the front line. We, however, sent thousands
19 upon thousands to the front lines. If I sent thousands of Serbs to the
20 front line, why wouldn't I send a hundred Muslims to carry water, to dig
21 trenches, and so on and so forth?"
22 And I'll end it there. So do you stand by the answer that you
23 provided in the Karadzic case?
24 A. The use of those units was defined by order --
25 Q. Sir, sir --
1 A. I mobilised --
2 Q. -- I'm very sorry to interrupt you. But just very simply: Was
3 the answer that you gave during your testimony in the Karadzic case
4 truthful and do you stand by that answer today?
5 A. My answer was truthful. When discussing the topic where I was
6 more tense than I am now, I said that the use of such units for work
7 obligation was logical in my view so that Muslims and Croats, too, would
8 be included in the events, given the fact that there was war, and they
9 were simply made part of the defence system. They were not given weapons
10 so as not to be forced to shoot at their compatriots but to assist the
11 army in the performance of its tasks. As per order which I received,
12 that's how things were implemented.
13 Q. Thank you, sir. So your answer was truthful and you stand by
14 that in this courtroom; correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Now, sir, my final question: In your statement in paragraph 9,
17 you refer to respect for humanitarian law and the laws of war, and in
18 particular the Geneva Conventions. Now, do you consider sending
19 non-Serbs to the front lines to be consistent and compatible with the
20 Geneva Conventions?
21 A. It depends on the manner of use.
22 Q. Sir --
23 A. If they were indeed used as a human shield, that would be against
24 the conventions. But if they were used to bring water and food and to
25 assist with noncombat tasks, that would not fall under that category.
1 Q. Sir --
2 A. So it's important that they are not used as a human shield, as
3 someone who would be directly exposed to enemy attack. I certainly hope
4 that there were no such situations.
5 Q. So, sir, sending Serbs [sic] to the front lines to dig trenches,
6 as you said in the Karadzic case and you've repeated here, do you
7 consider that to be consistent with the Geneva Conventions?
8 A. The sending of Serbs?
9 Q. The sending of non-Serbs was my question, or it should have been.
10 A. It was interpreted to me as "the Serbs." In my view, any
11 inhumane treatment, including exposing someone to enemy fire, would be in
12 contravention of God's law and human law, thus being against the
13 Geneva Convention. I condemn any exposure of such people to a danger of
14 being killed by the enemy side. In my view, it would cause great damage
15 to the Serb people and the Army of Republika Srpska. I therefore engaged
16 those people as per army request under the understanding that they would
17 be used in a way that would not threaten their life and security.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, I will stop you again. After ten lines
19 you've still not answered the question.
20 Do you consider digging trenches to be among -- digging trenches
21 by non-Serbs, do you consider that to be in violation of the
22 Geneva Conventions?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It does if they are exposed to
24 direct gun-fire and in a position to be killed. So the difference is in
25 how they're used and what the assessment of the officer concerned was at
1 that moment, whether they were wilfully putting those people in danger to
2 be killed. If that was the intent of the officer concerned, then that
3 would be against the conventions. But if their security was borne in
4 mind and if they were used only for tasks that would not endanger their
5 lives, in my view that would not be against the rules as envisaged.
6 The intention was not to use those people so as to protect
7 Serbian lives. That would not have been a good situation. I would never
8 have participated in any such thing had I had any knowledge of any such
10 JUDGE ORIE: Now, you draw a very fine line, digging trenches
11 with danger and digging trenches without danger of being fired at. Could
12 you tell us where in the Geneva Conventions you find the basis for this
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I make that distinction in my heart
15 of hearts. If Republika Srpska --
16 JUDGE ORIE: No. So it means that you make that distinction --
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The intent is key.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, Witness, I was asking you where in the
19 Geneva Conventions you find the basis for making that distinction and
20 your answer tells me that it was not actually on the basis of the
21 Geneva Conventions that you made that distinction.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy, that was your last question?
24 MR. JEREMY: It was, Your Honours. Thank you.
25 Q. Thank you, Mr. Tadic.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
2 Mr. Lukic, could you tell us, we'll take a break, but how much
3 time you would need after the break?
4 And meanwhile, the witness can be escorted out of the courtroom.
5 [The witness stands down]
6 MR. LUKIC: I'm trying to count my questions. Probably I should
7 finish in 15 minutes.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then it makes sense to keep the next witness
9 to remain standby. No. Perhaps you need to make some submissions. I
10 have to read two decisions. Perhaps we do that to start with after the
11 break. Then we would conclude the evidence of this witness today. And
12 then tomorrow the time schedule was, I think, half an hour for the
13 Defence --
14 MR. LUKIC: Two hours --
15 JUDGE ORIE: -- two hours for the Prosecution.
16 MR. LUKIC: Yes.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Which makes two and a half hours. I would expect
18 the parties to do their utmost best to conclude the evidence of the next
19 witness by tomorrow as well so that he doesn't have to return after many,
20 many weeks. Yes.
21 Then the witness who is at this moment on standby for tomorrow
22 can be -- doesn't need to remain standby and is expected to be here
23 tomorrow at 9.30.
24 We take a break and will resume at quarter to 2.00.
25 --- Recess taken at 1.24 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 1.48 p.m.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness be escorted into the courtroom.
3 [The witness takes the stand]
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tadic, you'll now be re-examined by Mr. Lukic.
5 May I again remind you that you are expected to answer the question,
6 first of all.
7 Please proceed.
8 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Re-examination by Mr. Lukic:
10 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon yet again, Mr. Tadic.
11 A. Godspeed.
12 Q. We do not have much time and yet we have to conclude, so I would
13 kindly ask for brief answers.
14 MR. LUKIC: If we can have P7016, please, on our screens.
15 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Tadic, you were shown these minutes from the
16 extraordinary meeting of the Executive Committee, and we saw already that
17 you were in attendance.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] On the next page -- in the B/C/S it
19 is actually the next page and in English it is the same page.
20 Q. You were told that on the 1st of November, 1992, which is at the
21 top of the page, nine members from Skrljevita were killed. A conclusion
22 was reached --
23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] In English, page 4; in B/C/S, 5.
24 Q. -- to the effect that General Talic should be informed
25 accordingly. You were a member of the commission. Do you remember what
1 you were told? Were you told to cover anything up or to go public with
2 it or to speak to Talic or to demand action? What was the task you
4 A. I do not recall the details, but as far as I can remember there
5 was nothing to hide and that's what I firmly believe in. God sees
6 everything and people can only try hiding things but to no avail. That
7 is why it was useful to discuss any evil that we may have perpetrated
8 upon another. That would be it.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Let us look at P7017, briefly.
11 Q. It is a decision to separate or split up proceedings. It is not
12 on the screen yet. It concerns minors Goran Vukojevic and Todo Vokic.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Goran Vukojevic and
14 Todo Vokic."
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. It was established that on that given date they were minors. As
17 such, could they have been mobilised in the JNA or the VRS?
18 A. Later, yes, once they reached their 18th birthday, but not
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Let us look at P7020.
21 Q. It is the minutes of the 7th Session of the Executive Committee
22 of the Municipal Assembly of Sanski Most. We see your name appearing on
23 the first page; thus, you were in attendance with the members of the
24 Executive Committee. In item 9 --
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] In the B/C/S it is page 6, in the
1 English version, page 7. Just to remind you.
2 Q. Item 9, point 1, it reads:
3 "A draft decision on the exhumation of mortal remains from the
4 cemetery in the town centre ... and the cemetery in Zdena" is thus
6 Is Zdena a village?
7 A. It is in the outskirts of the town. It is a settlement, part of
8 the town in the outskirts.
9 Q. In the municipality of Sanski Most, were these the only two
10 Muslim cemeteries?
11 A. No, there were many, many more. I don't know how many exactly
12 but around 50 or so.
13 Q. Thank you. We see in item 4 --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic, the previous question was about the
15 municipality of Sanski Most.
16 How many Muslim cemeteries were there in the town of Sanski Most,
17 could you tell us?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I hail from Palanka, 25 kilometres
19 to the west, so I don't know Sanski Most in detail. Around a dozen in
20 all likelihood.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then that's a calculated guess I then take
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I have no other means of
24 calculating it.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
1 MR. LUKIC: Thank you. Thank you.
2 Q. [Interpretation] In any case, would you say that even if these
3 two cemeteries were completely destroyed and eradicated, would that have
4 done away with all traces of Muslim cemeteries in the municipality of
5 Sanski Most?
6 A. Definitely not, and that was certainly not the intention. I
7 can't remember what the reason was, though. There must be one but I
8 don't remember it. In any case, this was not the reason.
9 Q. Thank you. Under 4 in the same document - we have it on our
10 screens - we can see that the chairman called the meeting to order and
11 spoke about the record of military conscripts. It says here that
12 Boro Tadic spoke about the record that had been established by way of
13 introduction. Was that your main role at the meeting?
14 A. Yes, yes. And there was always a struggle as to how many people
15 should be kept in companies and how many should be sent to the theatre of
16 war, and we can see that people in the companies wanted to keep as many
17 people as possible in order to maintain production, and the military
18 wanted their share. So there was always a struggle between the two.
19 Q. Thank you. I don't know whether you remember whether you stayed
20 at the very end of the session. Would you usually stay until the end or
21 would you leave after submitting your report?
22 A. I probably left because I attended only as a guest only because
23 of the item that I reported on. I was not a member of the
24 Executive Board, and if I'd stayed, I would have had to get involved and
25 discuss issues under other items of the agenda.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] And now let's look at P7022 for a
3 Q. It will be the last document that I intend to show you. My
4 learned friend Mr. Jeremy showed you this document about the deployment
5 of work obligation units. We saw your signature at the end of page 2.
6 But before that, we have a list of those who were deployed; i.e., those
7 who had been mobilised. At that time under the law, were Muslims and
8 Croats exempt from mobilisation?
9 A. No, they were citizens of Republika Srpska.
10 Q. You were a battalion commander in Croatia. In Croatia did
11 Serbian soldiers dig trenches?
12 A. Yes, they did.
13 Q. Do you know whether Serbian soldiers were digging trenches in the
14 war in Bosnia?
15 A. I was not a commander there, but I suppose that they did dig
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic, before we continue in this line, is the
18 underlying thought that soldiers would not dig trenches for their own
20 MR. LUKIC: No, it's absolutely not. No --
21 JUDGE ORIE: Then I --
22 MR. LUKIC: I think it's normal that somebody who is mobilised
23 should dig trenches.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, members of the army.
25 MR. LUKIC: I said to the first line, so it's normal for me.
1 JUDGE ORIE: No, no. Then I misunderstood.
2 MR. LUKIC: Okay. Yeah.
3 JUDGE ORIE: That's -- please proceed.
4 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
5 Q. [Interpretation] While you were in the process of creating those
6 work obligation units, were there any interventions by Serbs to be
7 transferred from war units to work obligation units? We have not
8 discussed that ever before. I'm asking you now.
9 A. There was a lot of pressure put on me to bear. Many wanted not
10 to be in the army for various reasons. And then when they had spoken
11 with their company directors and agreed on certain things, they would put
12 pressure on me to include them in a work obligation unit in that company.
13 You can see, for example, Srecko Bulj [phoen], who spoke at that session,
14 insisted to have as many people in the company who would work for him.
15 There was a constant pressure put on me to bear to move people
16 from war units to work obligation units to the companies that wanted to
17 maintain their production. It was a constant tug-of-war, a constant
18 pressure put on me to bear to strike a certain balance. On the one hand,
19 there was the military who wanted to have as many military conscripts for
20 war operations, the brigades were deployed all over the place; and on the
21 other hand, there were the needs of the companies and municipalities to
22 maintain production and to have as many assets as possible in operation.
23 Q. I don't know whether you can tell us or whether -- if you can
24 tell us -- if you can assess what was safer: To be a member of a war
25 unit or a work obligation unit?
1 A. It was much safer to be in a work obligation unit than in a war
2 unit. And one of the reasons for all that pressure is not just the need
3 of the companies but also fear from the whirlwind of war and possible
4 death on the first line. Many wanted to be exempted from that rather
5 than to resort to desertion from a military unit. There was a lot of
6 pressure put on me to bear by people who wanted to save themselves from
7 the first line and to be safer in a work obligation unit.
8 Q. Mr. Tadic, thank you. That was all we had for you.
9 A. Thank you.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy, any further questions?
11 MR. JEREMY: Yes, Your Honours. Just one question.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
13 Further Cross-examination by Mr. Jeremy:
14 Q. Mr. Tadic --
15 MR. JEREMY: Actually, could we have on our screens P7020,
16 please. Those are the minutes of the 7th Session of the
17 Executive Committee.
18 Q. Now, very briefly, Mr. Tadic, as those minutes are coming up,
19 Mr. Lukic a moment ago asked you whether you remember whether you stayed
20 at the very end of this session and whether you'd usually stay until the
21 end or whether you would leave after you submitting your report, and you
22 said that actually -- you said that:
23 "I probably left because I attended only as a guest ..."
24 Now, sir, I just want to draw your attention to the agenda,
25 point 9.
1 MR. JEREMY: Could we go to page 2 in the English, please.
2 Q. And we see there the agenda, point 9, endorsing draft decision on
3 exhumation of mortal remains. And it goes on to refer to the cemeteries
4 we've been discussing. So you would have been there at that point when
5 you -- at least during that point when that agenda item was raised;
7 A. I can't confirm that. I can see that my item is under 4, so I
8 really can't remember whether I stayed until the very end. There were
9 cases when I did stay, but there were also other cases when I left
10 sessions after having intervened under my item of the agenda for previous
12 Q. Sir, I understand that. But these are minutes of the session
13 that you attended, and what I'm saying to you is at the very start of
14 those minutes, an agenda item, point 9, was read out relating to this
15 exhumation of these graves, and I'm asking you if it's likely that you
16 would have been present when these agenda items were read out before you
17 spoke at the meeting?
18 A. Quite possible but I can't remember. There were many of those.
19 I can't remember. But it was also common for me to leave earlier.
20 Q. Thank you, sir. You've answered my question.
21 A. Thank you. Thank God.
22 JUDGE ORIE: No further questions. No further questions by the
24 Mr. Tadic, this concludes your testimony. I would like to thank
25 you very much for coming to The Hague and for having answered all the
1 questions that were put to you, put to you by the parties, put to you by
2 the Bench, and I wish you a safe return home again. You may follow the
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And I wish all of you all the best.
5 [The witness withdrew]
6 JUDGE ORIE: We have a few minutes left. We first move into
7 private session.
8 [Private session]
24 [Open session]
25 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
2 No other issues.
3 Then I would like to read, and that might go a couple of minutes
4 beyond the time, but I nevertheless hope that, with the assistance of the
5 interpreters and all others who are assisting us, will not -- we'll not
6 stop halfway.
7 First is the decision on the admission of P6682, which is a
8 collection of Council of Europe reports which were marked for
9 identification pending a possible agreement by the parties. This can be
10 found at transcript pages 24243 to 24252, and page 24270. An agreement
11 between the parties was not reached. The Defence filed its written
12 submissions on the 23rd of September, 2014.
13 The Defence requests the Chamber -- request that the Chamber deny
14 the report's admission into evidence. It argues, inter alia, that it is
15 improper for the Prosecution to present positive evidence subsequent to
16 the close of its case. The document does not meet the criteria for
17 admission via cross-examination, and the document contains over 400 pages
18 with no witness to authenticate or explain the content.
19 The Defence submits that the subject matter of the document goes
20 beyond the witness's knowledge and testimony and contains information
21 related to geographical areas also outside the scope of the indictment.
22 Further, the Defence submits that certain parts of the document rely on
23 hearsay and rumours, and that no information is provided on the sources
24 or methodology to ensure the document's reliability.
25 The Prosecution responded on the 3rd of October, 2014, submitting
1 that the pages of the report which it tenders are relevant and probative;
2 thus, meeting the requirements of Rule 89(C) of the Rules of Procedure
3 and Evidence.
4 The Prosecution submits that the tendered pages of the report are
5 relevant to the destruction of mosques in Foca municipality, which forms
6 part of the indictment against the accused. According to the
7 Prosecution, the report has probative value and contains information
8 regarding its provenance and reliability. The Prosecution submits,
9 inter alia, that the Defence's arguments should be rejected because no
10 legal authority has been cited, and the arguments go to weight as opposed
11 to admissibility. Further, the Prosecution submits that the Defence's
12 arguments regarding its tendering of evidence during cross-examination
13 have previously been rejected by this Chamber.
14 At the outset, the Chamber notes that the Defence's submissions
15 lack any reference to or discussion of the applicable law concerning the
16 admission of evidence and are therefore completely unsupported.
17 Moreover, with regard to the Defence's submission that it is improper for
18 the Prosecution to present positive evidence after the close of its case,
19 the Chamber recalls that in this regard on the 16th of September, 2014,
20 it referred the parties to a decision in the Stanisic and Simatovic case
21 dated the 26th of August, 2011. The Chamber thus dismisses the Defence's
22 submission that the Prosecution should not be allowed to tender
23 Exhibit P6682 subsequent to the close of its case.
24 The Chamber recalls that the applicable law for the admission of
25 evidence is Rule 89(C) of the Rules which allows a Chamber to admit any
1 relevant evidence which it deems to have probative value. The Chamber
2 does not consider the criteria submitted by the Defence for admission via
3 cross-examination to be relevant in this context and thus dismisses the
4 Defence's argument regarding the same.
5 The Chamber notes that the Prosecution has only requested the
6 admission of 13 pages in total. Therefore, the Chamber considers that
7 the Defence's argument relating to the length of the document and that it
8 also relates to areas outside the scope of the indictment is moot.
9 The Chamber notes that Witness Vujicic provided some information
10 regarding the destruction of mosques in Foca. The Prosecution discussed
11 with the witness a list in the report of mosques purportedly destroyed in
12 Foca. The Chamber considers this evidence to be relevant to scheduled
13 incident D5. With regard to the relevant pages of the report tendered by
14 the Prosecution, the Chamber is of the opinion that the sources of the
15 list are not entirely clear and that some of the language used therein is
16 ambiguous. The Chamber will, also in light of other evidence before it,
17 take such factors into consideration when deciding the weight to be given
18 to the document, but considers that there is sufficient information
19 regarding the authors, sources of information, and the methodology used
20 for the purposes of admission. The Chamber therefore finds that the
21 tendered pages of the report are relevant and of probative value.
22 With regard to the other arguments raised by the Defence, the
23 Chamber considers that these go to the weight of the document rather than
24 its admissibility.
25 The Chamber therefore admits into evidence pages 1, 6 through 9,
1 12 through 14, and 32 through 36 of P6682. The Prosecution is instructed
2 to upload a new version of P6682 reflecting the Chamber's decision, and
3 the Registry is instructed to make the necessary replacement thereafter.
4 The Prosecution is invited to upload a B/C/S version of the same, and the
5 Registry is instructed to attach the translation to P6682 when it becomes
6 available. And this concludes the Chamber's decision on the admission of
8 I'll not bother you with the other decision at this moment.
9 We'll hopefully find time for that one tomorrow.
10 We adjourn for the day. We'll resume tomorrow, Thursday, the
11 18th of December, 9.30 in the morning, in this same courtroom, I.
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.23 p.m.,
13 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 18th day
14 of December, 2014, at 9.30 a.m.