1 Wednesday, 4 March 2015
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.34 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 case
9 IT-09-92-T, the Prosecutor versus Ratko Mladic.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Madam Registrar.
11 The Chamber was informed that there was one short preliminary
12 matter to be raised by the Prosecution.
13 MR. TRALDI: Good morning, Mr. President. This relates to
14 MFI P7167. The Prosecution has received a revised English translation of
15 P7167 MFI. It was discussed on the transcript at T32471 through 32473 on
16 the 2nd of March, and 32480 through 32481 on the 3rd. The revised
17 translation has been uploaded into e-court under doc ID 0122-6836-ET.
18 And if the Defence do not object, we would request that the Court Officer
19 be instructed to replace the existing translation with the revised
20 version and the document be admitted.
21 JUDGE ORIE: I hear of no objections. And, as always, if there's
22 any problem, the Defence has an opportunity to revisit the matter once
23 they've further looked into it.
24 The Court Officer is hereby instructed to replace the translation
25 as is now attached to P7167 by the newly uploaded one.
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 JUDGE ORIE: And is admitted into evidence. P7167.
3 Mr. Tieger.
4 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Mr. President. May I take this
5 opportunity to note that the Prosecution is joined this morning by
6 Mr. Matthew Gillett, who will be taking the next witness.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, welcome in the courtroom. It's the week of the
8 newcomers, it seems, that's -- from both sides, so everything very
10 Could the witness be escorted in the courtroom.
11 I meanwhile deal with Exhibits P5969 and P5970.
12 The Chamber notes that page 1 and 2 of the B/C/S version of
13 Exhibit P5970 are identical to the B/C/S version of Exhibit P5969, while
14 the English translations of both differ. Although the Chamber did not
15 find substantial discrepancies, this is hereby put on the record. The
16 Chamber leaves it to the parties whether they request for verification of
17 the translations and, at the same time, leaves it to the Prosecution
18 whether it withdraws one of those exhibits. If the Prosecution intends
19 to do the latter, the Chamber remarks that Exhibit P5970 consists of more
20 than two pages.
21 [The witness takes the stand]
22 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning, Mr. Simic.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Simic, before we continue, I'd like to remind
25 you that you're still bound by the solemn declaration you've given at the
1 beginning of your testimony, that you'll speak the truth, the whole
2 truth, and nothing but the truth.
3 Mr. Traldi will now continue his cross-examination.
4 Mr. Traldi.
5 WITNESS: MILIVOJE SIMIC [Resumed]
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 Cross-examination by Mr. Traldi: [Continued]
8 Q. Good morning, sir.
9 A. Good morning.
10 Q. I want to follow up on one point from our discussion yesterday
11 and we were discussing the presence of Rade Bozovic and Serb DB units in
12 your zone of operations. And it was Bozovic's unit -- it was part of the
13 Red Berets in Doboj that you mentioned; right?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Now in June 1992, the Teslic Brigade of the VRS co-operated with
16 Red Beret units from Doboj in mopping up Muslim and Croat villages in
17 Teslic municipality; right?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Staying with Teslic, you were aware that thousands of Muslims and
20 Croats had left Teslic by the end of July 1992; right?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And they left because of the crimes that were being committed
23 against them; right?
24 A. I don't have that information, although crimes had been
25 committed. But then since this Teslic Brigade was there that was
1 guarding the town of Teslic, many families of Muslims and Croats left
2 without any kind of torture because their villages and towns were there,
3 where their people lived.
4 Q. And the Teslic Municipal Assembly took a decision that any
5 citizen of Teslic who had left the area before the 1st of July should be
6 banned from returning; right?
7 A. I don't know about that decision of Teslic. I'm not aware of it.
8 It's possible, though.
9 MR. TRALDI: Can we have 65 ter 32045. This is a set of
10 decisions by the Teslic Municipal Assembly at the 16th Regular Session on
11 the 6th of July, 1992. And if we could have point 12, page 3 in the
12 English and 2 in the B/C/S.
13 JUDGE ORIE: I don't know what you're heading for, Mr. Traldi,
14 but the witness said he was not aware of this decision. Before you put
15 another decision to him and then tender it into evidence, wouldn't it be
16 good to ask whether the witness has any knowledge at all. Because
17 cross-examination can be used in support of the case of the opposing
18 party, but, at the same time, should not be the vehicle by which we just
19 introduce a whole new -- all kind of new documentary evidence in the
20 Prosecution's case.
21 MR. TRALDI: I take the point, Mr. President. At the same time,
22 often a decision may be -- looking at a decision may support putting to
23 the witness that he must have known about it and that's what I'm
24 suggesting here.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. You can do that. But let's -- let me be
1 clear on -- there are limits to cross-examination, even if it is in
2 support of the Prosecution's case.
3 Please proceed.
4 MR. TRALDI:
5 Q. Sir, I'm directing your attention first to point 12, the decision
7 "Any citizen of Teslic municipality, regardless of ethnic
8 background, who for whatever reason left the area before the 1st of
9 July this year, shall be banned from returning."
10 Now we see that at the same meeting, immediately above point 11,
11 there was a discussion of carrying out additional mobilisation of Serb
12 citizens in July 1992 and addressing with criminal proceedings people
13 who'd failed to respond to the call-up to military service.
14 Based on your position and the fact that Teslic was within your
15 area of responsibility, you must have been aware, first, of the decisions
16 to conduct additional mobilisation and to initial -- initiate criminal
17 proceedings against --
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. -- against those who hadn't responded; right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. So you were aware of other decisions taken at this same session.
22 I'd put to you, you must also have been aware that a municipality in your
23 area of operations was taking the decision to bar the thousands of people
24 who had already left from coming back. You must have known that, mustn't
1 A. Unfortunately, no, because the decision of the Assembly of
2 Teslic, this decision of theirs, was not given to me. I was not aware of
3 this content of the decision, except for the part that has to do with
4 mobilisation. I had not received this decision, as the commander there.
5 [Prosecution counsel confer]
6 MR. TRALDI: Your Honours, I tender this document.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Simic -- Mr. Lukic.
8 MR. S. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We are opposed to having this
9 document admitted because the witness doesn't know, and he did not take
10 part in the work of this organ whose document is in question.
11 MR. TRALDI: The witness has confirmed his knowledge of some
12 portions of, and I've put to him that he must also have been aware of
13 others. But it, certainly based on his evidence, isn't right to say that
14 he has no knowledge about the document or about the conclusions therein
15 or about the work of the municipal assembly.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 JUDGE ORIE: The objection is denied. The document is admitted.
18 The witness has testified that he has knowledge of the content of at
19 least part of the decision, which is sufficient for admission.
20 Madam Registrar, the number would be?
21 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 32045 receives number P7184.
22 JUDGE ORIE: P7184 is admitted.
23 Please proceed.
24 MR. TRALDI: Can we have P5145.
25 Q. Now, sir, this is a report from the 1st Krajina Corps Command,
1 intelligence and security department, dated the 12th of July, 1992,
2 regarding the situation in the area of Teslic, sent to the Main Staff of
3 the VRS.
4 And it's signed by Zdravko Djuric. Zdravko Djuric was an officer
5 in the 1st Krajina Corps Command; right?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Now, directing your attention to the third paragraph, we see a
8 reference to some of the people we discussed yesterday. We see the
9 1st Krajina Corps Command is describing, first, Ljubisa Petricevic as the
10 former head of the Doboj military department and a captain first class.
11 Does that refresh your recollection as to whether
12 Captain Petricevic was a civilian or a soldier in the VRS?
13 A. Captain Petricevic was an officer in the Army of
14 Republika Srpska. As head of the military department in Doboj.
15 Q. And also served as Chief of Staff of the Teslic Brigade; right?
16 A. No, he was head of the military department in Doboj at that time,
17 and it was later that he came to the unit of the operations group or,
18 rather, he became commander of a battalion. He was not Chief of Staff of
19 a brigade. He was the head of the military Department of Doboj.
20 Q. Sir, just to cut this short, he's clearly identified here as a
21 captain first class.
22 MR. TRALDI: If we turn to page 2 in the English. And, I'm
23 sorry, also in the B/C/S, I think.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Traldi.
25 MR. TRALDI: Yeah, in --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Part of the answer of the witness referred to later.
2 Later always requires that you know what the starting point in time is.
3 Could you please include that in your questions.
4 MR. TRALDI: I will.
5 Q. And I'm going to try to be very focused here, sir. First, if you
6 look at the fourth paragraph in the B/C/S, we read:
7 "In addition to the members of the Red Berets and employees of
8 the Doboj CSB, the following members of the Teslic Brigade were among
9 those arrested."
10 The first name is Captain First Class Ljubisa Petricevic, the
11 brigade Chief of Staff. Next name, Ranko Sljuka, aka Narednik [phoen],
12 the commander of the Military Police Company. Then Radoljub Sljivic, the
13 then-chief of OBO, and five or six military policemen from the Military
14 Police Company.
15 Now, this is a report dated the 12th of July, 1992. First
16 question as a matter of chronology, does this refresh your recollection
17 that no later than the 12th of July, 1992, the men I had just mentioned
18 were soldiers in the Teslic Brigade of the VRS?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. You said --
21 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We could not discern what
22 the witness has been saying. Could all other microphones please be
23 switched off. Thank you.
24 MR. TRALDI:
25 Q. Sir, you have been asked to repeat what you just said. I think
1 it may have been about Captain Petricevic?
2 A. Captain Petricevic at this time was head of the ministry or,
3 rather, Secretariat for Defence in Doboj. The municipal Secretariat for
4 National Defence in Teslic and the one in Doboj were under him. I had no
5 authority over Petricevic because these are organs belonging to the
6 civilian structures and it is only commands that can ask them for
7 replenishment for material resources, et cetera. That was the only link.
8 As for all the rest, no.
9 Q. Just to be fair, sir, what I'm putting to you is that the corps
10 command here is correct, that these men were soldiers in the Teslic
11 Serbian Brigade at that time and that the information you're providing is
13 Do you have any comment on that?
14 A. Oh, no. Well, these soldiers, yes; but Petricevic, no. The
15 rest, yes. But as for Petricevic, he -- I mean, Captain Petricevic, he
16 was head of the military department in Doboj.
17 Q. And you said he became a captain later. At what time in your --
18 earlier, you said he had become a captain later. At what time in your
19 evidence did he become a captain in the VRS?
20 A. He was a captain, but later in the unit he was appointed
21 battalion commander, but not in the Teslic Brigade. Rather, it was the
22 Doboj Brigade. Sometime in the autumn of 1992.
23 Q. Finally, sir, I want to turn to your evidence --
24 MR. TRALDI: And I'm done with this topic unless the Chamber has
25 any questions in this regard.
1 Q. Finally, sir, I want to turn to your evidence about the
2 conversation you had with General Mladic. Now you said it was in the
3 retirees' club in Doboj and that it took place in August 1995, and he
4 told you that 2.000 people had been killed during the night.
5 First, about how long, how many days or weeks, after the events
6 General Mladic was describing did the conversation you had with him take
8 A. I don't remember the exact date. It was the beginning of
9 August 1992. Now I don't know how many days after this crime, that is to
10 say, it was then, the beginning of August. Perhaps the 2nd, 3rd or 4th
11 of August, 1992. Then General Mladic came to Doboj to the corps command
12 to meet up with General Talic, the corps commander, and some other people
13 who were with him. Probably because of that. But primarily he came to
14 see what the situation at the front line was and to get brief information
15 from the units of the corps, how far they've gone, what is needed, and so
16 on and so forth.
17 Q. Now what were the units of the corps doing at that time --
18 JUDGE ORIE: Before we do so, you are recorded as having referred
19 to August 1992 twice. Did you mean to say 1992 or did you have another
20 year in mind?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] 1992, the beginning of August 1992.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
23 MR. TRALDI:
24 Q. What were the units -- you said he had spoken to you,
25 General Talic, and some other people who were there with him to get
1 information about the units of the corps, how far they've gone,
2 et cetera. What were the units of the corps doing at the time that
3 General Mladic had this conversation with you? What particular actions
4 was he asking you about?
5 A. The units of the corps were involved in an offensive and the
6 breakthrough of the corridor, Odzak had already been taken, Derventa was
7 under our control, and the units were at the place called Bijelo Brdo and
8 that is where the fiercest fighting took place between the units of the
9 VRS and the HVO. General Talic then asked to be briefed about the
10 situation on the front and what the needs were of the units for the
11 continuation of these operations. I was present there.
12 Q. But you say --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Traldi, could you nevertheless revisit the year,
14 because yesterday's transcript says "1995," and also in the context of
15 what we read, it certainly needs more attention.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do apologise. I made a mistake,
17 yes, it's 1995. It's after the victims of Srebrenica, yes. Sorry, I
18 have been saying 1992 all along, and, of course, I meant 1995. My
19 mistake in terms of this year, yes.
20 JUDGE ORIE: It's clarified.
21 MR. TRALDI:
22 Q. Sir, you just said during the same conversation you discussed the
23 breakthrough of the corridor, said the units of the corps were involved
24 in an offensive operation, that there was fighting between the units of
25 the VRS and the HVO. Now, that's an accurate description of what the
1 1st Krajina Corps was doing in the summer of 1992, but it's not what they
2 were doing in the summer of 1995, is it?
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic.
4 MR. S. LUKIC: I'm sorry, but are we still talking about 1992 or
6 JUDGE ORIE: The line of questioning is such to -- to address
7 that matter. Please proceed.
8 MR. S. LUKIC: Thank you.
9 MR. TRALDI: I'll re-ask the question.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Please do so.
11 MR. TRALDI:
12 Q. Sir, you were describing the conversation a moment ago. I asked
13 what particular actions that the units of the corps were undertaking at
14 that time General Mladic was asking you about. You said the units of the
15 corps were involved in an offensive and the breakthrough of the corridor,
16 said Derventa was under control, the units were at a place called
17 Bijelo Brdo. And what I'm putting to you is: That's an accurate
18 description of what the 1st Krajina Corps was doing in the summer of
19 1992. It is not an accurate description of what the 1st Krajina Corps
20 was doing in the summer of 1995. And so the rest of the conversation
21 that you're describing clearly relates to activities in the summer of
22 1992, doesn't it?
23 A. Correct. I got the years wrong. The question was about 1992 so
24 I focused on 1995, but in -- so I concentrated on 1992. But in 1995,
25 civilian authorities were being established. Most of the bank was under
1 our control, and the area from Ozren was under attack from Croatian
2 forces and our units were very busy. And in that sense, General Talic
3 briefed General Mladic about the situation in that area of the front
4 line, and in the municipalities, the civilian authorities of
5 Republika Srpska were just being established.
6 Q. Now have you provided a completely different description of the
7 rest of the conversation just now to the description you provided when I
8 asked you just moments ago. I'd put to you that your recollection of
9 this conversation is not reliable. Do you have any comment on that?
10 A. No, I remember that thing in 1995. I had just got the year wrong
11 when the questions were about 1992. So I concentrated on 1992,
12 forgetting that this was in 1995. The area of Posavina up to the
13 Sava River was completely free. It was only my mistake about the year.
14 In 1995, I remember very well what specifically happened in that briefing
15 by General Talic of General Mladic. That's what I know.
16 Q. Well, since you remember it very well, I'm going ask you about a
17 couple of other details from it.
18 Was Milan Martic present for this briefing?
19 A. As far as I know, he was.
20 Q. And you said General Talic was briefing General Mladic about the
21 situation -- about the situation in the area of the front line. At what
22 point in that briefing did General Mladic inform you and General Talic
23 that 2.000 people had been killed during the night?
24 A. I remember very well when General Mladic came in. He was
25 standing in the door. He hadn't even sat down yet. He said, Brothers,
1 something horrible happened that shouldn't have happened, without my
2 knowledge and my approval. And only then General Talic sat down and the
3 corps commander briefed him about the situation on the ground. He didn't
4 want any comments anymore. He just wanted General Talic to briefly
5 report to him about the situation in the units of the corps.
6 Q. So ... first, is it your evidence that General Mladic came in,
7 said 2.000 people had been killed, and then you -- first, let me finish
8 the question, sir. Is it your evidence that he came in, said 2.000
9 people had been killed, and then you, he, and General Talic essentially
10 conducted business as usual?
11 A. I didn't finish talking about when he came in and said, Brothers,
12 something horrible happened and it shouldn't have happened, without my
13 knowledge and my approval. About 2.000 people had lost their lives, were
14 killed that night. Those were his words.
15 And then we sat down, and then he started talking to the corps
16 commander. It was a conversation between the corps commander and the
17 commander of the Main Staff, and we did not interfere in that.
18 Q. You were retired. In your evidence, why were you at this
20 A. I was retired from the Army of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
21 because I had completed my years of service, but I stayed on in the Army
22 of Republika Srpska, that's what General Talic asked me, in order to work
23 with the civilian structures in the Doboj region. That's how I was at
24 that meeting.
25 Q. So what they were discussing, military operations, wasn't in your
1 area of responsibility. Your area of responsibility was about
2 co-operating with civilians; right?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. What was Milan Martic there for? Why was he at the meeting?
5 A. I don't know. They knew each other well, Martic and
6 General Talic and General Mladic. He must have been invited to come in
7 and see the corps commander. I don't know why he was there and who
8 invited him.
9 Q. Now, you say you were told these people had been killed. You
10 understood, in your evidence, that you were being informed they'd been
11 murdered; right?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Who did you tell?
14 A. I did not tell anyone. I didn't need to. Later on, when I went
15 around these secretariats for national defence and presidents of
16 municipalities, they had learned something about the same thing that I
17 did, and I told them about that meeting and that General Mladic said what
18 he said.
19 Q. I'm not sure I understood your answer. Did you not tell anyone
20 that 2.000 people had been murdered, or did you tell secretariats for
21 national defence and presidents of municipalities in the Doboj area that
22 2.000 people had been murdered, in your evidence?
23 A. Yes. I told them that's what General Mladic had said, that about
24 2.000 people had perished, were murdered. People from Srebrenica.
25 Q. Now, in your previous testimony, the last few moments, about what
1 he said, you didn't say he had explicitly referred to Srebrenica. What,
2 in your evidence, led you to think that that was what this was about?
3 A. Well, he told us when he sat down together with General Talic
4 that that had been done around Srebrenica and in Srebrenica.
5 Q. Now, did you get an impression as to who the perpetrators of
6 these murders had been?
7 A. No, I didn't. And I wasn't able to get any impression who the
8 perpetrator of these murders might have been.
9 Q. You would have known, however, that people held at Srebrenica
10 were in the custody of VRS and RS MUP forces before they were killed;
12 A. I learned that from TV and from what General Mladic said at the
13 command post of the corps.
14 Q. And you know, of course, that there have been a number of trials,
15 here and in Bosnia, of members of the VRS and the RS MUP for the crimes
16 in and around Srebrenica. You've never publicly stated what you know in
17 any of those proceedings, or what you claim to know, have you?
18 A. What I know now, yes.
19 Q. Let me ask the question very precisely. You've never publicly
20 stated or stated in any of the many, many Srebrenica trials what you are
21 claiming that you know about the mass murders, the genocide that was
22 committed there, have you?
23 A. Nowhere, that's right.
24 [Prosecution counsel confer]
25 MR. TRALDI:
1 Q. Okay, sir, then this will be my last question. I'd put to you
2 that you've never publicly stated it before your testimony on behalf of
3 General Mladic for the same reason that your articulations and testimony
4 about the remainder of that conversation has not been consistent this
5 morning, which is that your testimony about this is not truthful. That
6 conversation, as you've described it, did not occur. That's the truth,
7 isn't it?
8 A. I was present. I mean, at what happened.
9 MR. TRALDI: Your Honours, I have no further questions for this
11 JUDGE ORIE: I have perhaps a few questions.
12 In your testimony today, you said that General Mladic told that
13 without his knowledge and without his approval about 2.000 people had
14 lost their lives, were killed that night. "That night" meaning the night
15 before he came to you or before you met him?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, a couple of days ago, the
17 beginning of August. And these events in Srebrenica, that was sometime
18 in the second half of July.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now, it was clear to you that he referred to
20 murders rather than to combat casualties?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Did he explain anything further?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] To be quite honest, he didn't want
24 to go into any further explanations and details. He briefly informed the
25 corps commander, and all of us who were there heard it. And he asked the
1 corps commander to briefly report to him about the situation on the
2 ground and in the units of the corps. There were no extensive comments.
3 He maybe didn't want to talk more about it. But that's what he said at
4 that time.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Do I understand that the corps command had no
6 knowledge, as far as you understood, but that General Mladic knew about
7 what had happened?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. The corps commander knew as
9 much as I knew, from some reports, talk, radio and TV broadcasts these
10 days. We didn't know any more about it. The specific knowledge we
11 gained was when General Mladic was at our headquarters.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Now, you're saying that you had only very
13 superficial knowledge. You said "the corps command, or corps commander,
14 knew as much as I knew from some reports, talk, radio and TV broadcasts
15 these days."
16 Does that mean before General Mladic told you about the
17 2.000 persons that had been killed that night, that there were already TV
18 and radio reports about that?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Especially Sarajevo Radio and
20 Television, the Tuzla broadcasts. That's what we followed and that's
21 what we heard.
22 JUDGE ORIE: What did these broadcasts tell you?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In these programmes, it was said
24 that it was a genocide of the Serbian army, several thousand people had
25 been killed, that's what the programme said. Over several days they
1 publicised these events in Srebrenica, and at some point it reached its
2 peak. And then we heard from the horse's mouth, so to speak, from
3 General Mladic, that it happened.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Because you earlier said the specific
5 knowledge we gained was when General Mladic was at your headquarters.
6 Now, what was the specific knowledge, then, in addition to what you knew
7 already from the media?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What he told us was that 2.000
9 people had been killed the night before without his knowledge or
10 approval. Only that. That was not even close to what the media were
11 broadcasting a few days before he arrived Doboj.
12 JUDGE ORIE: What did the media then broadcast which was
13 different? Because you said earlier that the media said that it was
14 genocide, several thousand people had been killed. What was new about
15 it, what you learned from General Mladic?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's nothing new. It's just that
17 these figures had been exaggerated. That's what we knew. It was
18 impossible that that many victims had been killed without the knowledge
19 or approval by General Mladic. We learned that the figures publicised
20 were exaggerated. That's what we learned, General Talic and I.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Now, General Mladic tells you that --
22 MR. LUKIC: Your Honours, if this gentleman just can take the
23 headphones off for a second, please. We have to intervene regarding the
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could you please take off your headphones for
1 a second witness. No, you can put -- leave your glasses on but ... yes.
2 MR. LUKIC: If you can check if he speaks English.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Do you speak any English? Do you speak any
5 THE WITNESS: No.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Well, that's an answer to a question I put to you in
7 English. Could you please leave the courtroom for a second and be ...
8 [The witness stands down]
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic, I don't know whom to address. I take it
10 that Mr. Sasa Lukic --
11 MR. LUKIC: No, Sasa Lukic can probably say the same I had to
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Apparently there was a translation issue which
14 we should not confront the witness with. But what is the issue,
15 Mr. Lukic?
16 MR. S. LUKIC: When the witness talked about numbers of killed in
17 the -- Srebrenica, he -- that Sarajevo reported, he was talking about
18 8.000 people and more.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. We'll -- we'll verify that with the witness.
20 And could the witness be escorted in the courtroom again.
21 [The witness takes the stand]
22 [Trial Chamber confers]
23 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, you told us about what the Sarajevo media
24 reported, and you said it was exaggerated numbers.
25 Could you tell us again what were the numbers they were
1 broadcasting, the numbers -- number of victims?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They mentioned 8.000, 10.000, and
4 JUDGE ORIE: Now you said you couldn't believe that that many
5 persons would have been murdered without the knowledge of -- and the
6 approval of Mr. Mladic. Now, for 2.000, did you consider that possible
7 and that that would have happened without the knowledge and without the
8 approval of General Mladic?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understood that it could have
10 happened even without the knowledge or approval of General Mladic because
11 that's what he said himself. Somebody was working in an organised way
12 and secretly from him, against him and against the Army of
13 Republika Srpska and the Serbian people. That was my conclusion. That's
14 the impression I got.
15 JUDGE ORIE: You got that impression on the basis of what? Just
16 on the basis of those few words that General Mladic said?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
18 JUDGE ORIE: So he didn't in any way refer to somebody working in
19 an organised way and secretly. He didn't say anything about that.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no, he didn't.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE ORIE: Judge Fluegge has one or more questions for you.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Simic, when you -- when you listened to
24 General Mladic during this meeting in Doboj, did he use the term
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: He directly referred to Srebrenica as the place
3 where these crimes have happened, yes?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That crime happened in Srebrenica,
5 and that's what he mentioned.
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And he used the word "Srebrenica"?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Again, in -- if you try to recall correctly, was
9 he referring to an event which took place the night before you met him or
10 several days before?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What happened in Srebrenica
12 happened a few days before we met with him in Doboj.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I'm asking you that because - and this is
14 page 19, lines 1 and 2 - you said a minute ago:
15 "What he told us was that 2.000 people had been killed the night
16 before without his knowledge or approval."
17 Only that.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Was it the night before or several days before?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That meeting was several days
21 later, but specifically when he was in Srebrenica, those events, as far
22 as he knew, had happened the night before.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You told us several times today that there was no
24 talk between General Talic and other officers and General Mladic about
25 this message. He just said that, and then you continued discussing the
1 situation on the ground.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, General Mladic was obviously
3 not inclined to go on talking about that. He moved to the specific
4 subject for which he had come to the corps command, to find out about the
5 situation in the units.
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: In your statement, paragraph 28, there I read the
7 last sentence:
8 "The further conversation revealed that he was talking about the
9 events following the fall of Srebrenica."
10 Now, in your statement, you say there was a further conversation
11 about this issue. Which of the two is true?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That further conversation was very
13 brief, just a couple of minutes and then it was over. It was not an hour
14 or even half an hour. I said "further," but it meant only a couple of
15 minutes. He did not want to go into any more discussion, not even with
16 the corps commander. That was his decision. They went on talking about
17 the specific issues for which he had come to the corps command. That was
18 very short.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: But there was a further conversation about this
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. While I was there, no. Those
22 several minutes, that's what I meant. And then the corps commander
23 proceeded to brief General Mladic about the situation in the corps. That
24 took -- that briefing took one hour.
25 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I understand that, but I don't understand what
1 you're telling us now, that there was no conversation. Only a few
3 You said earlier today --this can be found on page 13, lines 21
4 and the following:
5 "And only then General Talic sat down and the corps commander
6 briefed him about the situation on the ground. He didn't want any
7 comments anymore."
8 That suggests that there was no discussion at all about the
9 killing of 2.000 people.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, for these few minutes, I
11 mean, it wasn't a long conversation. The general certainly didn't want
12 that either. What he said to us briefly is what he said. And then Talic
13 was supposed to report to him about the units of the corps. That is what
14 was happening there on that day.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And did General Mladic tell you during this
16 conversation that the people who were killed in Srebrenica have been in
17 custody of the VRS and the RS MUP?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
20 JUDGE ORIE: I have one follow-up question.
21 Did he tell you that he had been -- and I'm addressing you. Did
22 he tell you that had he been in Srebrenica?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was there, yes. It's that day,
24 when the civilian population was moving out. It was shown on TV too.
25 Those children and women were being seen off and they were saying that
1 they were going to Tuzla, and I know that ...
2 JUDGE ORIE: But his presence in Srebrenica, was that part of
3 your discussion or not?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I'm telling you, during those
5 few minutes, he said to us what I have already said, what had happened,
6 what is terrible, the most terrible of all. And then after a few minutes
7 that conversation was over and then he moved on to concrete matters.
8 Obviously he was not inclined to talk about that, and there was no need
9 to, in my view.
10 JUDGE ORIE: But did he in any way refer himself to his presence
11 in Srebrenica, apart from what you learned from the media?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, on those days, on that day,
13 when that was happening, he was in Srebrenica. That is how I understood
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that was my question: Whether he told you that
16 it happened on the day when he was in Srebrenica or the night before.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. It was my understanding
18 that that is what he said and that in spite of that, somebody did that
19 behind his back, and that was terrible.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Now, is there any explanation as to, to kill
21 2.000 people in one night, that takes a huge effort. Did he say anything
22 about whether it was a group or a person or what -- what had happened?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He did not. He didn't explain it
24 to us. He was not in a good mood, and he was a bit angry too. And he
25 certainly didn't want us to comment upon that because this was certainly
1 weighing on his mind; but no, no, we didn't make any further comments.
2 JUDGE ORIE: And from the conversation, you took it that these
3 were not combat casualties but these were persons that were intentionally
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] People who had been taken prisoner
6 had been killed. So it was prisoners that had been killed. That's
7 that ...
8 JUDGE ORIE: Did he say anything or did you learn anything about
9 if persons having been taken prisoners are killed, that requires an
10 investigation, isn't it?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Did he say anything about any investigation that was
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He didn't say anything. Not then.
15 Whether something was done, I don't know, but he didn't say anything
16 then, no.
17 JUDGE ORIE: But you understood that the persons killed had been
18 taken prisoners. May I take it that you mean to say that they were taken
19 prisoner by the Serb forces?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic, any further questions?
22 MR. S. LUKIC: Yesterday I said that I have ten to 15 minutes,
23 but maybe I need little bit longer today.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Under the present circumstances, we'll follow
25 your -- after the break, we'll follow your re-examination, but it's
1 understandable that you would need a bit more time.
2 Witness, we'd like to see you back in 20 minutes. We take a
4 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
5 [The witness stands down]
6 JUDGE ORIE: In view of what was announced, that is, photographs
7 are to be taken, we need a bit of a longer break. That is, we'll resume
8 at five minutes past 11.00.
9 --- Recess taken at 10.37 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 11.07 a.m.
11 JUDGE ORIE: We are waiting for the witness to be escorted in the
13 I have a very short issue I could raise, that is, a remaining
14 issue from the testimony of Nedjo Vlaski; P6889. During the -- I'll
15 leave it for a second.
16 [The witness takes the stand]
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Simic, I have to address you, the camera is
18 between us. I understand that you were informed that for purposes of a
19 panoramic picture, that a photographer will be for two minutes with us.
20 He'll enter the courtroom now and he'll make that picture. You're
21 supposed to -- just to remain seated, as everyone is.
22 Mr. Lesic enters the courtroom and will make his panoramic
23 picture for the purposes of the web site of the Tribunal.
24 The Chamber appreciates the co-operation by everyone in this
1 Mr. Lukic, if you're ready to re-examine the witness, please
3 MR. S. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Re-examination by Mr. S. Lukic:
5 Q. [Interpretation] Good day, Colonel, sir.
6 A. Good day.
7 Q. Yesterday my colleague Mr. Traldi asked you - that is transcript
8 page 32531, lines 5 through 15 - whether General Talic knew about
9 civilians passing through Doboj from Prijedor. Did you discuss that with
10 General Talic?
11 A. I never talked about that. And I don't see why they would go
12 through Doboj from Prijedor, when it was encircled. What year are we
13 talking about?
14 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could the witness please
15 be asked to speak into the microphone.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, could you come a bit closer to microphone
17 so that the interpreters can hear you better.
18 THE WITNESS: Okay, okay. Okay.
19 MR. S. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. My colleague Mr. Traldi also asked you whether you were a member
21 of the War Presidency of the municipality of Doboj. Do you remember when
22 you became a member of the War Presidency?
23 A. [Interpretation] After receiving the duty of OG commander, that
24 is to say, 1992, the 15th of May, they said that the commander of the OG
25 should automatically be a member of what they called the Crisis Staff.
1 Q. Thank you. How often did you take part in the work of that body?
2 A. Well, as far as I can remember, three or four times. I mean,
3 when they call me, when they tell me, when they ask me to come. I took
4 part about three or four times. But later on during operations, I was
5 not allowed to do that. I was not able do that. That was that.
6 Q. Thank you. What was your task, actually, there?
7 A. Where?
8 Q. In the Crisis Staff.
9 A. Well, to attend as commander of the units in the area of
10 responsibility, that is to say, in the territory of the municipality of
11 Doboj. Just to be present, as commander, and if I have some remarks with
12 regard to the work of organs, the secretariat, the municipality, I could
13 present them there. I mean, no other plans were made. Military plans
14 were elaborated by the corps command.
15 Q. Thank you. The civilian authorities of the town of Doboj, did
16 they provide anything for the army?
17 A. The Secretariat of National Defence of the municipality was
18 duty-bound to replenish units, to send extra manpower and food whenever
19 requested by units. As for weapons and equipment, that was done through
20 the military, through military service.
21 Q. Thank you. Yesterday you were also asked by my friend Mr. Traldi
22 about the four Serbian Ss as symbols on the Serb flag.
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. This sign, is it nationalist or is it a national symbol of a
1 A. It's the national symbol of the Serb people wherever they may be.
2 Q. Thank you. Yesterday you were also shown a set of documents
3 stating that someone had been released from custody in order to go to the
4 front. What was your position with regard to that matter or, rather,
5 with regard to that question of people being sent to the front rather
6 than remain in custody?
7 A. It was the position of all commands, and we had orders to that
8 effect from superior commands, that soldiers who were taken into custody
9 by the military police or the civilian police should be interviewed. If
10 they had not committed a crime, they should be released and sent to their
11 war-time units.
12 Q. Thank you. Yesterday you were also asked about a unit that was
13 called Vukovi sa Vucjaka, Wolves of Vucjak. And you were shown a
14 document, stating that from a certain period of time in 1992, they became
15 part of the Army of Republika Srpska. Also, you said --
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Traldi.
17 MR. TRALDI: I'd just ask that the witness take his headphones
18 off for the objection.
19 JUDGE ORIE: But apparently the witness does understand some
21 MR. TRALDI: I'd forgotten, I apologise.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could we --
23 MR. TRALDI: Perhaps I could say very briefly that I was rising
24 in relation to the characterisation of what the document showed, and
25 invite my friend to rephrase the question.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Would you consider that, Mr. Lukic.
2 Otherwise we would have to ask the witness to leave the courtroom. But
3 for the time being, of course, usually best is to quote literally from
4 yesterday's transcript, if it was -- yes, it was yesterday. That avoids
5 any further dispute about what was said.
6 Witness ...
7 MR. S. LUKIC: Yes, thank you.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
9 MR. S. LUKIC: Could we have document P03826.
10 Q. [Interpretation] In the first paragraph of this document, it says
11 the battalion from the STO Prnjavor, from Vucjak, is hereby being
12 resubordinated to the 327th mtbr and shall fully be incorporated into it.
13 Do you know who they belonged that before that?
14 A. As far as I know, before that they were at Vucjak, independently.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: May I seek clarification about the word
18 Mr. Simic, did anybody command this unit, the STO Prnjavor?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I cannot say anything to you
20 because that was outside my area of responsibility. Prnjavor is pretty
21 far away from Doboj. I had no connection to them, so I cannot answer
22 your question whether they were or not, I don't know.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
24 MR. S. LUKIC: I would like do call a video, P7173.
25 [Video-clip played]
1 MR. S. LUKIC: We should play it a second time, maybe?
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 JUDGE ORIE: Well, it has not been translated to us now, but we
4 have the transcript because it is the same portion that was played
5 before. The witness was able to hear it in his language, and unless
6 there's any insistence on it being played twice, we'll just remember or
7 re-read the transcript in English. So, therefore, there's no need.
8 MR. S. LUKIC: Okay. Thank you.
9 Q. [Interpretation] Again, we had an opportunity to hear
10 General Talic here explaining the objectives related to the corridor.
11 What was the humanitarian situation in the western part of the country?
12 A. In my area of responsibility, there weren't any major problems.
13 Q. And in the western part of Republika Srpska around Banja Luka?
14 A. Well, that I don't know. What I heard was that there were some
15 areas that were critical, that is to say, imperilled from a humanitarian
16 point of view. I learned that from the media. I don't know anything
18 Q. To the best of your recollection and to the best of your
19 knowledge, is that also one of reasons why the corridor was supposed to
20 be established?
21 A. Well, yes. As far as I understood things, when preparing this
22 with the corps command and in terms of the actual implementation, our
23 conclusion was had there not been for a corridor, there wouldn't have
24 been Republika Srpska.
25 Q. Thank you. I've finished with this. And I have no further
1 questions for you. I want to use this opportunity to thank you for
2 responding to the invitation of the Defence team and for coming here to
3 testify, both in my own name and the name of the whole Defence team of
4 General Ratko Mladic.
5 A. Thank you, too.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Lukic.
7 Yes, I first like to put on the record that the video we just
8 saw, that the transcript of the text spoken is found on transcript
9 page 32534 of yesterday's transcript.
10 Judge Fluegge has a question before an opportunity will be given
11 to the Prosecution to put further questions to the witness.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I would like to call up D921; page 5 in the
13 English and the corresponding page in B/C/S.
14 Mr. Simic, if you have now the hard copy of your statement in
15 front of you, could you please have a look at paragraph 28.
16 On the screen, it's the next page in B/C/S.
17 I see here in paragraph 28 that there are some lines underlined.
18 The words, according to your statement, spoken by Mr. Mladic. Why are
19 they underlined?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know. I did not underline
21 anything. I made a statement to the lawyers of Ratko Mladic, and I
22 didn't underline this. I don't know.
23 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you very much.
24 JUDGE ORIE: You also did not ask for it to be underlined?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
2 Mr. Traldi, any further questions for the witness?
3 MR. TRALDI: Just very briefly, Mr. President.
4 Further Cross-examination by Mr. Traldi:
5 Q. Sir, in response to my colleague Mr. Lukic's question at
6 transcript page 30 today, temporary transcript page 30, you said:
7 "It was the position of all commands, and we had orders to that
8 effect from superior commands, that soldiers who were taken into custody
9 by the military police or the civilian police should be interviewed. If
10 they had not committed a crime, they should be released and sent to their
11 war-time units."
12 Now, the Chamber has received the decision releasing the soldiers
13 who we've discussed at some length. That decision says they confessed to
14 the crimes. We saw that you'd signed the request to release one of them.
15 So what I'm putting to you is: It was, in fact, the position of the
16 command that soldiers who had committed crimes against Croats and Muslims
17 be released and sent to the front. That's the truth; right?
18 A. No. It was the courts that decided if somebody committed a
19 crime, they had to be held criminally responsible. The unit was not
20 looking for those people. But the soldiers who have been proven not to
21 have committed a crime, they had to return to their units.
22 MR. TRALDI: Nothing further, Your Honours.
23 [Trial Chamber confers]
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Blagojevic, that was the last question put to
25 you. This concludes your testimony. I'd like to thank you very much for
1 coming a long way to The Hague and for having answered all the questions
2 that were put to you, put to you by the parties, put to you by the Bench.
3 I wish you a safe return home again.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much for treating me
6 [The witness withdrew]
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Traldi.
8 MR. TRALDI: Just one brief follow-up matter. We are looking
9 into the document where there was an issue with the signature, my
10 recollection is it's P7183 MFI, and looking into it with CLSS and hope
11 we'll have something to report in the near future.
12 JUDGE ORIE: That's on the record.
13 MR. TRALDI: And with that, I --
14 JUDGE ORIE: [Microphone not activated] -- what your report will
15 be but we have to be patient.
16 Is the Defence -- any other matter?
17 MR. TRALDI: Just to ask to be excused.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, you are.
19 Is the Defence ready to call its next witness?
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think so, Your Honour. And
21 the next witness is Mladen Blagojevic.
22 JUDGE ORIE: We'll wait for the witness to be escorted into the
24 [The witness takes the stand]
25 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning, Mr. Blagojevic, I presume.
1 Before you give evidence, the Rules require that you make a
2 solemn declaration, of which the text is now handed out to you.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
4 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
5 WITNESS: MLADEN BLAGOJEVIC
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. Please be seated.
8 Mr. Blagojevic, you'll first be examined by Mr. Stojanovic. You
9 find Mr. Stojanovic to your left. Mr. Stojanovic is counsel for
10 Mr. Mladic.
11 You may proceed, Mr. Stojanovic.
12 Examination by Mr. Stojanovic:
13 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Blagojevic.
14 A. Good morning.
15 Q. For the record, please, tell us your full name.
16 A. Mladen Blagojevic.
17 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, have you given a written statement to the Defence
18 team of General Mladic?
19 A. Yes.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I wish to call up
21 in e-court 65 ter 1D01663.
22 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, you see before you the cover page of the
23 statement. Can you identify the signature?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Whose signature is it?
1 A. Mine.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we look at the last page,
4 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, do you recognise the signature and the date
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And whose signature is it?
8 A. It's mine.
9 Q. Is the date written in your hand?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, could we look at
13 paragraph 6.
14 Q. [No interpretation]
15 JUDGE ORIE: We do not hear any interpretation. Could you please
16 restart, Mr. Stojanovic.
17 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, did you tell me during proofing that a minor
19 correction needs to be made to make it more precise? In paragraph 6, in
20 the second sentence, instead of the words "to the Suceska village," the
21 phrase should be "toward Suceska village."
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Thank you. And in paragraph 7, we should focus on the B/C/S. In
24 English, it's also there. Did you tell me that also for the sake of
25 precision about your movements, in the first sentence after the words
1 "and General Mladic," we should insert:
2 "With the said priest he went to the church in Srebrenica, and we
3 from the military police platoon of the Bratunac Brigade went to the
4 brigade command to refuel, and then we returned to the church in
5 Srebrenica. After which, followed by General Mladic's vehicle, we went
6 back to Bratunac. And then the general went to the church in Bratunac,"
7 and then the same text follows, "whereas we, in our own vehicle, went to
8 the brigade command."
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Thank you. And after these corrections, now you have made a
11 solemn declaration in this courtroom, if I were to put to you the same
12 questions, would you provide the identical answers and would they be the
13 best of your recollection about these events?
14 A. Yes.
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I should like to
16 tender the statement of Witness Mladen Blagojevic, which is
17 65 ter 1D01663.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Gillett, no --
19 MR. GILLETT: No objections, Mr. President. Thank you.
20 JUDGE ORIE: No objections. Madam Registrar.
21 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 1D1663 receives number D922.
22 JUDGE ORIE: D922 is admitted.
23 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] With your leave, Your Honours, I
24 should like to read a summary of this witness's statement.
25 Witness Mladen Blagojevic, in 1995, was a member of the military
1 police platoon within the Bratunac Brigade. He remembers that on
2 13 July 1995, one squad of the military police was designated to escort
3 General Mladic in the areas of Bratunac and Srebrenica. They moved about
4 in a Pinz vehicle, and he remembers that within that squad there were
5 eight or nine members of the military police.
6 On that day, they followed the vehicle of General Mladic and his
7 permanent escorts. They passed through Potocari into the sector of
8 Suceska village where General Mladic addressed VRS troops and
9 congratulated them on the operation they had successfully completed.
10 After that, they headed for Srebrenica. And after refuelling at
11 the brigade command, they returned to Srebrenica and then went to the
12 church in Bratunac, and from there to the command of the Bratunac
14 The witness states that escorting the vehicle of General Mladic,
15 they then headed toward Konjevic Polje. He remembers that passing
16 through Sandici village they stopped for a while. General Mladic got out
17 of the vehicle, seeing on the right side of the road about a hundred
18 Muslims who had surrendered, he addressed them in a very conciliatory
19 tone, telling them not to be afraid, that they would be exchanged for
20 Serbs who had been captured. And he also asked them if there were any
21 sick people among them, and if they needed a doctor, but nobody said
22 anything. They continued on to Konjevic Polje, and there, they stopped
23 briefly by the check-point manned by a few civilian policemen. He is not
24 sure whether General Mladic got out of the vehicle at that time, but he
25 remembers that through an open window or door of his vehicle, he yelled
1 at those policemen because they seemed quite laid back, as if they were
2 there to sun-bathe and not work. The witness emphatically maintains that
3 the statement by Momir Nikolic about him talking to General Mladic at
4 that check-point and that General Mladic motioned to him showing that the
5 Muslims would be liquidated is untrue, that the whole story is completely
7 He is certain that on that day he did not see Momir Nikolic in
8 Konjevic Polje, and he knows Momir Nikolic very well. He did not meet
9 with General Mladic on that day at that junction, nor any other section
10 of the road from Bratunac to Han Pijesak where they parted ways with
11 General Mladic, who continued with his escorts to travel toward
12 Crna Rijeka.
13 That is a summary of this witness's statement, Your Honours, and
14 with your leave, I have only a few questions for him.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed as you suggest.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could we focus again on
17 paragraph 6 of what is now D922.
18 Q. Just to make everything perfectly precise, Mr. Blagojevic, can
19 you remember in the sector of that village, Suceska, or the sector
20 leading to Suceska, what was General Mladic saying to the VRS troops?
21 A. Yes, I can remember. To the best of my recollection,
22 General Mladic thanked the soldiers for the operation they had
23 successfully completed. And in the end, he said to wash their feet and
24 prepare to go to Zepa. That's what I remember General Mladic saying.
25 Q. Could we look at paragraph 11 of your statement which reflects
1 your recollection about the moment when you were passing through that
2 intersection going towards Konjevic Polje. Can you remember around what
3 time was it on 13 July?
4 A. If I remember well, it was 3.30, between 3.30 and 4.00 p.m.
5 Around 4.00 in the afternoon.
6 Q. Thank you. And in conclusion, where did you live after the war
7 in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
8 A. After the war?
9 Q. Yes, after the war.
10 A. After the war, I lived in Bratunac. And then in 1998, I moved to
11 the United States because my wife's father and brother had been
12 imprisoned in a Muslim camp called Silos and they had been registered by
13 the Red Cross, and when the war was over, they could choose to live in a
14 third country. They left in 1997, and they sent a letter of guarantee to
15 my wife. She was the beneficiary of that letter. And in 1998 I went
16 with my wife to live in the United States, and with my son, who was
17 then 3.
18 Q. How long did you live in the US?
19 A. Eight years.
20 Q. When you were entering the United States and receiving an
21 immigration visa, did they ask you about your participation in the war?
22 A. Before we left for the United States, we went to Belgrade and we
23 had a meeting with IOM, that was the name of the organisation. We had to
24 fill in an application form, but they tricked us, in fact, and they told
25 us not to report any participation in the war for purposes of speeding up
1 our immigration.
2 Q. So did you report your participation in the war?
3 A. No, I listened to them and didn't.
4 Q. Did you have problems later with the authorities of the US
5 because of this?
6 A. Yes, I did have problems because under the US law, it amounted to
7 an illegal entry, and there was even a trial there. I wanted to go back
8 to my country, and that's what I stated at the trial, and I wanted to be
10 Q. So were you deported?
11 A. Yes, I was deported in 2006. In November, I think, I'm not sure
12 about the month. But I was deported into Bosnia-Herzegovina.
13 Q. Upon your arrival in Bosnia-Herzegovina, what happened?
14 A. When I arrived at Sarajevo airport, I was arrested by SIPA and
15 they told me that I'm a war crimes suspect. And in Bosnia-Herzegovina, I
16 was convicted to seven years in prison.
17 Q. Did you serve that sentence?
18 A. Five years and 11 months is what I served. Thirteen months on
19 probation. So I've done all of that. I was sentenced to seven years,
20 but for as long as I live, I shall fight that judgement because I do not
21 feel guilty.
22 Q. Were you not convicted of some of the charges that had been
23 brought against you originally?
24 A. Yes. I cannot remember how many counts there were, but I was
25 only found guilty on one of them. And I repeat to you once again: I do
1 not feel guilty in terms of what it was that the court in
2 Bosnia-Herzegovina had sentenced me for.
3 Q. Thank you for your answers, Mr. Blagojevic.
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] And this completes my direct
6 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Stojanovic.
7 Before we continue, one very specific question. You said you
8 were told not to report your involvement in the war in this application
9 form. Was there any specific question about the involvement in the war?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. As far as I can remember, the
11 question was: Were you a member of an army, and if so, which one. And I
12 said in that statement that I was in the JNA, but as for participation in
13 the Army of Republika Srpska, I did not report that because these people
14 from this organisation told me not to report that. And I'm not the only
15 one, I mean, among all of us who left Bosnia-Herzegovina after the war
16 and who went to America and did absolutely the same thing that I did.
17 That is to say, it's not that I was afraid or something.
18 During those eight years, I came to Bosnia-Herzegovina twice
19 because my parents live in Bosnia. I came twice. So I did not go to
20 America to hide.
21 JUDGE ORIE: I'm not suggesting that in any way. But you were
22 aware that you were not answering that question fully in accordance with
23 the truth because you left out a certain portion. Is that ...
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That what's they told us to do, in
25 order to speed up family reunification. But I did not realise that that
1 was a crime according to American law, a criminal offence.
2 JUDGE ORIE: You knew that it was not the whole truth?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
4 JUDGE ORIE: You will now be cross-examined, Mr. Blagojevic, by
5 Mr. Gillett. You'll find him to your right. Mr. Gillett is counsel for
6 the Prosecution.
7 Please proceed.
8 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Mr. President. Your Honours, if you'll
9 just give me one second.
10 Cross-examination by Mr. Gillett:
11 Q. Now, good day, Mr. Blagojevic. I'm going to ask you some
12 questions on behalf of the Prosecution. If any of them are not clear,
13 please let me know, and I'll do my best to clarify.
14 Now, firstly, you've discussed your conviction for immigration
15 fraud in the United States, and for that you received a 12-month
16 suspended sentence of imprisonment; correct?
17 A. Well, I'm not sure whether I was given that. When they asked me
18 to go to court and to be involved in a trial with America, I asked for
19 deportation. Now I don't know whether that was a judgement. I am not a
20 lawyer. I don't know if you understand what it is that I'm saying ...
21 MR. GILLETT: Could we get Exhibit P1517 on the monitor, please.
22 Q. And if we look at page 1 under the heading: "Verdict." And this
23 is in both B/C/S and English. After we see your name and date of birth
24 listed, if we skip three lines down, we see:
25 "Previous conviction for immigration fraud in violation of
1 Title 18, United States Code, Section 1546(a)." And then it says:
2 "Sentenced to 12 months imprisonment."
3 So do you accept that you were sentenced to 12 months
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Objection. I think that it
6 would be fair to the witness to read what is written here in terms of the
7 sentence to the very end.
8 JUDGE ORIE: I don't know what exactly you're referring to at
9 this moment, Mr. Stojanovic. Is it a matter which cannot be raised in
10 re-examination? Or let me see --
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, that's not a
12 problem. I think that that would be much shorter if he just read what is
13 written here to the end.
14 JUDGE ORIE: If you would follow that suggestion, Mr. Gillett.
15 MR. GILLETT:
16 Q. The relevant portion reads:
17 "Sentenced to 12 months imprisonment, sentence suspended for
18 deportation to BiH, arriving in BiH on 15 November 2006, held in custody
19 pursuant to this court's decision."
20 So do you accept that you were sentenced to 12 months' suspended
22 A. I already said that to you. If that's a sentence, that's a
23 sentence. But I'm telling you that I do not remember that I was found
24 guilty. I was the one who asked for deportation from the United States
25 of America.
1 MR. GILLETT:
2 Q. If we now turn to page 2 of this document and in the first
3 paragraph, the first full paragraph in English and B/C/S, we see the
4 factual basis on which you were convicted. And it states:
5 "On the night of 13/14 July 1995, at Vuk Karadzic primary school
6 (now known as the Branko Radicevic School) in Bratunac, municipality of
7 Bratunac, while there were several hundred civilian Bosniak men detained
8 in the school, one of the Bosniak men appeared at the window of a room at
9 the school, whereupon he pointed a Browning machine-gun mounted on a
10 Pinzgauer at the window at which the Bosniak man appeared and opened fire
11 from it, targeting both this man and the other Bosniak men inside the
12 same room, while the bullets hit the window and the wall around the
14 That's the factual basis on which you were convicted; correct?
15 A. Yes, I've already told you I was convicted of that, but I do not
16 feel guilty.
17 Q. Sir, a Browning machine-gun is a heavy weapon; correct?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And would you accept that it uses 12.7-millimetre calibre
20 ammunition which is a large-calibre ammunition?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And it can also be used as an anti-aircraft weapon; correct?
23 A. Well, I'm not sure, but I think so.
24 Q. Sir, for this conviction in Bosnia for the crime against humanity
25 of other inhumane acts you were sentenced to seven years imprisonment;
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And that conviction was upheld on appeal; right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. I'll come back to the events on 13 July 1995 in Bratunac in some
7 Firstly, Mirko Jankovic, he was the commander of the Bratunac
8 Brigade military police platoon that you were a member of in July 1995;
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And his deputy was Mile Petrovic; right?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And Momir Nikolic was the chief of security and intelligence in
14 the Bratunac Brigade; correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. So you knew all these people reasonably well in July 1995;
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. When you were carrying out your escort mission with
20 General Mladic on 13 July 1995, did you see Jankovic, Petrovic, and
21 Momir Nikolic in an UNPROFOR vehicle near Konjevic Polje?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Sir, when you were being investigated for immigration fraud in
24 the United States, you gave a number of interviews to US agents; correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 MR. GILLETT: Could we get 65 ter number 32111. And,
2 Your Honours, I am aware the break may be approaching, and this will take
3 some minutes to get through, so if it's a convenient time for you, I'm
4 happy to break now.
5 JUDGE ORIE: I think we are -- we came back to the courtroom at
6 five minutes past 11.00, so therefore I think it would be better to take
7 the break now and then deal with this matter after the break.
8 Witness, we'd like to see you back there 20 minutes; we'll take a
9 break. You may follow the usher.
10 [The witness stands down]
11 JUDGE ORIE: We'll resume at 25 minutes past 12.00.
12 --- Recess taken at 12.05 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 12.27 p.m.
14 JUDGE ORIE: While we are waiting for the witness to be escorted
15 into the courtroom, I resume what I earlier said about the issue
16 remaining from the testimony of Nedjo Vlaski. P6889 was marked for
17 identification due to an objection by the Defence with regard to the
18 document's origin. This can be found at transcript pages 27822 through
19 823, and 27846.
20 On the 20th of January of this year, the Prosecution advised the
21 Chamber that the parties are in discussions about this document and asked
22 the Chamber not to take any action before the parties have concluded
23 their efforts. This is to be found at transcript page 30242.
24 Are either parties in a position to advise the Chamber whether
25 the discussions have resulted in an agreement in relation to P6889? I
1 don't expect immediate answer but it is now brought to your attention
2 again, and we'd like to hear from you still this week.
3 [The witness takes the stand]
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Gillett.
5 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours.
6 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, you agreed that you were interviewed by the
7 US authorities in relation to your immigration fraud conviction. Do you
8 recall that the first interview was videotaped?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Do you dispute that the first video was -- the first interview
11 was videotaped? And this was an interview on 15 October 2004.
12 A. I don't dispute it, but I don't remember that it was videotaped.
13 [Trial Chamber confers]
14 MR. GILLETT:
15 Q. Sir, I was asking you before the break about a possible sighting
16 of Jankovic, Petrovic, and Momir Nikolic near Konjevic Polje.
17 MR. GILLETT: And if we get 65 ter document 32111 on the monitor,
18 page 11, and we look at the last paragraph, and I'll just note for
19 everybody that the B/C/S and English of this document correspond, the
20 pages and paragraphs on each page.
21 Q. Now, sir, this is one of the pages from the reports of the
22 interviews that the US authorities conducted with you. And if we look at
23 the last paragraph of this -- of this page, we see in the second sentence
24 it states:
25 "Blagojevic claimed that he observed Jankovic, Petrovic, and
1 Momir Nikolic in an UNPROFOR vehicle near Konjevic Polje when Blagojevic
2 was following the busloads of Muslim prisoners to Zvornik."
3 Now I acknowledge that you link this to the busload -- following
4 the buses of prisoners to Zvornik, but I'm going suggest to you that, in
5 fact, you saw them on the UN vehicle on 13 July. And the Chamber has
6 heard evidence from, firstly, Momir Nikolic on this point, who stated --
7 and I'll set this out before I pose my question. He stated at transcript
8 page 11944, and this is 3 June 2013, the following:
9 "Q. Thank you. Now moving on, did you make another journey down
10 the Bratunac-Konjevic Polje road later that same day, 13 July?
11 "A. Yes, I did go one more time.
12 "Q. Let me stop you and just ask: Can you tell us who you went
13 with and what vehicle you went in?
14 "A. I went the same day in the afternoon with the commander of
15 the military police, Mirko Jankovic, and the deputy commander of the
16 Bratunac Brigade military police, Milo Petrovic, and we went in an APC of
17 the UNPROFOR or, rather, of the DutchBat, because during that day and
18 earlier, in the Bratunac Brigade, we did have a few APCs available to
20 If we then look to Mile Petrovic's testimony on this, and this
21 can be found from the transcript of 9 February 2015, pages 31324 to
23 "Q. You agree with Nikolic that you travelled on the
24 13th July in an APC from Bratunac to Konjevic Polje?
25 "A. Yes, I travelled with him and Mirko.
1 "Q. Mirko Jankovic?
2 "A. Yes.
3 "Q. This was a stolen UN APC; right?
4 "A. Yes.
5 "Q. It was white and it had UN markings on it in big black
6 letters; yes?
7 "A. Correct."
8 Sir, in light of this evidence that the Chamber's heard, are you
9 willing to accept that it's possible that your sighting of these three on
10 the UN vehicle near Konjevic Polje happened on 13 July 1995?
11 A. No, no, I maintain with full responsibility. No, I did not see
12 them that day in Konjevic Polje.
13 Q. And you maintain, as you say in your statement, that you're
14 completely certain you did not see Momir Nikolic on 13 July?
15 A. Yes, I maintain that I did not see him on that day when we were
16 escorting General Mladic in Konjevic Polje. Maybe he was in
17 Konjevic Polje, but I did not see him on that day when we were escorting
18 General Mladic.
19 Q. Did you, as reported by the US authorities, see these three on an
20 APC at all near Konjevic Polje, on any date?
21 A. No. I said I had heard that they had been in Konjevic Polje on
22 an UNPROFOR APC, Mile Petrovic, Momir Nikolic, but I did not see them. I
23 heard about it.
24 Q. So where it states in the bottom paragraph of page 11 that you
25 claimed that you observed these three on the UN vehicle, you are
1 disputing that. You're saying that's incorrect?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. I'm going to ask you some questions about a location called
4 Nova Kasaba, which is beside a football field. Are you aware of that
6 A. Yes, I suppose so.
7 Q. When you were escorting General Mladic on 13 July, you stopped
8 there with him and he spoke to prisoners at the field; correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. I'm going to play what you told the US agents about this.
11 MR. GILLETT: If we could get 65 ter 32112, clip 13, and this
12 should be time codes 01:07:18 to 01:09:46.
13 And I note the -- for the transcript of this video, which is one
14 transcript with B/C/S and English in it together, this is on pages 63
15 through to 65.
16 And, Your Honours, just because the transcript has both B/C/S and
17 English in it, and everything is being translated to English, and because
18 the booths have the transcript with the clips marked, I am in your hands
19 as to whether we need to play this twice or whether it will be sufficient
20 to play it once.
21 JUDGE ORIE: I think that if -- what we need, of course, is the
22 English transcript. I am also looking at the parties. If it is a
23 question-and-answer situation in which we can follow the English and
24 where the B/C/S can be followed especially by the Defence, then I think -
25 but I'm just consulting my colleagues - that we could play it once. And
1 if there's any challenge to the accuracy or the -- of the transcript,
2 then we'll hear that later.
3 Please proceed.
4 MR. GILLETT: Thank you. So if we could now play clip 13.
5 [Video-clip played]
6 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could you give us a second
7 to find 13.
8 MR. GILLETT: If we could re-start. Thank you.
9 JUDGE ORIE: And wait for a second.
10 MR. GILLETT: And on the transcript, this is halfway down page 63
11 of the transcript that the booths have.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And could you state for the record where we start
13 with the video.
14 MR. GILLETT: The time code is 01:07:18 seconds. Thank you.
15 [Video-clip played]
16 "And you said you stopped at the soccer pitch at Nova Kasaba?"
18 "Were the prisoners on that pitch at the time?
20 "And who was securing those prisoners?
21 "Also the army. Also army and the police. I don't know whether
22 these police actually were members of the special police unit. I don't
24 "Okay. And did Mladic address these prisoners?
25 "Yes, he did.
1 "Can you remember what was said at that location?
2 "Almost the same.
3 "How long did you remain there?
5 "And from there you continue on to Vlasenica?
7 "Is that to the Drina Corps headquarters?
8 "Yes. Yes, but we stop once before the corps."
9 MR. GILLETT: We can pause it there. Thank you. And we've
10 stopped at 1:08:34 seconds.
11 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, you heard what was stated there. When you state
12 that Mladic --
13 MR. GILLETT: Now I'll just check for Your Honours. Did that
14 come through clearly? You weren't able to follow. Perhaps because in
15 the original video it is all being translated into English, I wonder if
16 it's better to just play the video with the volume up so that we can hear
17 it that way.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Well, I turned up my volume already, because we can
19 do that ourselves.
20 MR. GILLETT: Apologies. Volume up on the video without
21 interpretation, because there is English being provided throughout the
23 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Then we have it now on the record. We play
24 it once again now without translation so that we can follow every word as
25 spoken in English. And any B/C/S-speaking person can follow the
1 conversation as well.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Can we first ask the witness if he recognise
3 himself in this video.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
5 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Please play it again.
7 [Video-clip played]
8 "And you said you stopped at the soccer pitch at Nova Kasaba?
10 "Were there prisoners on that pitch at the time?
12 "And who was securing those prisoners?
13 "Also the army. Also army and the police. I don't know whether
14 this police actually were members of the special police unit, I don't
16 "Okay. And did Mladic address these prisoners?
17 "Yes, he did.
18 "Can you remember what was said at that location?
19 "Almost the same.
20 "How long did you remain there?
22 "Okay. And from there you continue on to Vlasenica?
24 "And is that to the Drina Corps headquarters?"
25 MR. GILLETT: Okay. We can stop there. Thank you. And I note
1 we stopped at 1 hour, 8 minutes, and 25 seconds.
2 Q. First, Mr. Blagojevic, you mention that what he said to the
3 prisoners was the same. You're meaning that it's the same as what he
4 said to the prisoners at Sandici meadow; correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And the prisoners were sitting down on the football field;
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. When you say the army was guarding them, you mean the VRS; right?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Did you see Mladic order some of the VRS soldiers to register the
12 prisoners there at Nova Kasaba?
13 A. No.
14 Q. Did you see any mistreatment of the Muslim prisoners at
15 Nova Kasaba on 13 July when you stopped there?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Sir, here is what one of the Muslim prisoners who was present at
18 Nova Kasaba on that day said.
19 MR. GILLETT: And for Your Honours, this is transcript page 9567.
20 "Q. Now we've been talking about this incident of a prisoner
21 being shot at the Nova Kasaba football field. Can you tell us in your
22 own words what is -- as far as you remember it, what happened?
23 "A. Well, while Mladic was there holding a speech, one of the
24 youths stood up. I don't know why he stood up. At any rate, the Serbian
25 soldiers removed him from the rows where we were seated. He was toward
1 the end of the row. He started beating him with rifle-butts and kicking
2 him, and then one of them shot him from a rifle. His body was thrown
3 into a nearby ditch. Mladic was present but didn't react at all. We
4 were told -- they told us that if anyone of us should behave this way, we
5 would be killed."
6 Q. Now, in your statement, you describe with some detail the other
7 events during the escort mission with Mladic, but you don't describe the
8 events at Nova Kasaba, do you? And to clarify, I'm talking about your
9 statement which is now admitted into evidence under the number D922.
10 A. I maintain with full responsibility that this incident did not
11 happen while General Mladic and I were there.
12 Q. Sir, I'm going to repeat my question. My question was: You
13 describe the other incidents during the escort mission with
14 General Mladic on 13 July with detail, but you don't describe this stop
15 during the escort mission, do you?
16 A. In my statement, I said that from Bratunac to Vlasenica,
17 General Mladic made two stops. The first was in the sector of Sandici,
18 and the second one was in Nova Kasaba, at the football field.
19 Q. Sir, if I give you a copy of your statement, would you like to
20 show us where you describe the events at Nova Kasaba on 13 July, or are
21 you willing to accept that there is no description? There is only one
22 mention of Nova Kasaba with no detail added at all.
23 A. I've already mentioned that one stop was made in Sandici, he
24 addressed people there, and he addressed Muslim prisoners in Kasaba
25 approximately with the same words, as in Sandici.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, you're now asked about the statement you
2 gave to the Mladic Defence, not about the statement you gave to the
3 American investigators. And the question is whether have you an
4 explanation why you don't give any details about stopping in Nova Kasaba
5 and Mr. Mladic addressing any Muslim persons held in -- on the football
6 pitch. That's the question, why this does not appear in any detail any
7 further in your statement you've given to the Mladic Defence.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's correct. But I'm
9 telling you, I have no intention of concealing anything. Quite simply,
10 these were two stops. Now why I didn't mention that, I mentioned the
11 sports field but I did not mention in detail what happened during this
12 address by General Mladic.
13 MR. GILLETT:
14 Q. Sir, I'm going to put it to you that you don't provide the detail
15 of what happened at Nova Kasaba because this Bosnian Muslim's evidence is
16 true, that the killing did occur there and that Mladic was there while it
17 happened. That is the reason that you don't provide any description of
18 the events at Nova Kasaba on 13 July in your statement to the Defence.
19 A. I am repeating to you yet again, while at the stadium, while
20 General Mladic was there, not a single incident occurred. The general
21 wouldn't have allowed that. Again, I repeat, that incident did not occur
22 while the general and I were there at the sports field. I state that
23 with full responsibility.
24 Q. Now, sir, you said before that you did not see Mladic ordering
25 VRS soldiers to register the prisoners. Do you realise that
1 Zoran Malinic, the head of the 65th Protection Regiment testified --
2 provided evidence that Mladic did instruct the VRS soldiers at
3 Nova Kasaba on 13 July to register the prisoners?
4 MR. GILLETT: And for Your Honours, I will put the reference on
5 the transcript. It's P155, page 65 in e-court, transcript page 15376.
6 Q. So, sir, I will repeat my question. Do you realise that
7 Zoran Malinic, the head of the 65th Protection Regiment, said that Mladic
8 did order VRS soldiers to register the prisoners? Do you accept that
9 that happened?
10 A. I don't know, but I accept that that is possible, that that
11 happened. But I don't know about that.
12 Q. Zoran Malinic also said that a Bosnian Muslim prisoner was killed
13 at Nova Kasaba on 13 July. So do you accept that is also possible and
14 that you may have forgotten about that?
15 [Prosecution counsel confer]
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I find that question unclear.
17 Could you please repeat the question?
18 MR. GILLETT:
19 Q. Zoran Malinic also said that a Bosnian Muslim prisoner was killed
20 at Nova Kasaba on 13 July, and I would note that the Prosecution disputes
21 the details of his account of this, but he says that that occurred. Do
22 you accept that it is possible that that occurred while you and
23 General Mladic were at Nova Kasaba?
24 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours --
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've already answered that
2 JUDGE ORIE: One second.
3 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think it would be fair to the
4 witness to quote that part of Mr. Malinic's statement, if it's already
5 being used.
6 MR. GILLETT: Certainly. If Your Honours would like, I'm happy
7 to go to that evidence. Although I'm not sure that I -- I feel the
8 witness's position may already be clear on this issue, but since the
9 Defence has asked, I'd go to the statement -- I'd go to the transcript.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Well, if you have no problems in doing that.
11 Otherwise, of course, the Defence could do it in re-examination. But if
12 you're willing to do it, it may speed up ...
13 MR. GILLETT: Your Honour's suggestion is even more preferable.
14 I think the witness's position is clear. If you just give me one second
15 to check the transcript.
16 In fact, I haven't received an answer to this question. So I'll
17 state it, and if the Defence wants to bring up the transcript for
18 additional details, of course, that's -- they're entitled to do so.
19 Q. But I'll just get an answer from you, sir. Do you accept, based
20 on Zoran Malinic's account, that it is possible that a Bosnian Muslim
21 prisoner was killed at Nova Kasaba on 13 July while yourself and Mladic
22 were there?
23 A. I repeat to you yet again, while I was there at the stadium,
24 while the general was there, not a single bullet was fired. That is to
25 say, it could be heard. I am not challenging whether that happened
1 before or afterwards, but while we were at the stadium in Kasaba, there
2 was not a single gun-shot.
3 Q. Thank you. I'll move on. Sir, when you --
4 MR. GILLETT: Unless Your Honours have additional questions on
5 that point.
6 Q. When you finished escorting Mladic on 13 July, you came back to
7 the Bratunac Brigade headquarters; correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And when you returned, Momir Nikolic ordered you to go and guard
10 prisoners at the Vuk Karadzic school in Bratunac; right?
11 A. I cannot recall whether it's Momir Nikolic or Mirko Jankovic. I
12 don't remember who it was that said that. Now was it Momir Nikolic or
13 Mirko Jankovic? I cannot say that to you for sure.
14 MR. GILLETT: Can we get 65 ter document 32111, page 18. Thank
15 you. This document should still be on the screen. If we go to page 18,
16 the second-last paragraph.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: While this comes up, let me ask the following:
18 Mr. Blagojevic, were you ordered to guard prisoners at the
19 Vuk Karadzic school? By whomever.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What do you mean, in writing or
22 JUDGE FLUEGGE: In whichever way.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm telling you, when we returned
24 from the escort, it was perhaps 11.00 or 12.00 at night when we arrived
25 before the command of the military police. I cannot remember. I cannot
1 remember for sure whether it was Jankovic, the commander of the military
2 police, or Momir Nikolic that told us to go in front of the Vuk Karadzic
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Witness, did you go to the Vuk Karadzic school?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And that was an order given by somebody?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
9 MR. GILLETT: Thank you.
10 Q. If we look at the second-last paragraph of this page, it states:
11 "Asked if he saw people being loaded on buses, Blagojevic stated
12 he did not see prisoners on buses at that time, but did see them
13 following the escort of Mladic after returning to Bratunac, when he was
14 ordered by Nikolic to guard the school."
15 Does that refresh your memory?
16 A. I'm telling you yet again, I cannot say for sure whether it was
17 Nikolic that said that or Jankovic. I cannot be 100 per cent certain.
18 Q. So, in fact, you can't be certain whether you saw Momir Nikolic
19 on 13 July or not, can you?
20 A. I cannot recall.
21 [Prosecution counsel confer]
22 MR. GILLETT:
23 Q. And you cannot be sure -- actually, let me go to what you say in
24 your statement to the Defence.
25 MR. GILLETT: If we look at paragraph 12. And this is now D922.
1 If we could get -- and this is page 3 of the statement, paragraph 12.
2 Q. The second sentence which is just coming up reads:
3 "What I am completely certain of is that on that day, 13 July, I
4 did not see Momir Nikolic, whom I knew very well personally."
5 In fact, you did see Momir Nikolic on 13 July, didn't you?
6 A. I told you already I'm not sure whether it was Jankovic that told
7 us or Nikolic. That is to say, I'm not sure, I cannot remember, when we
8 returned from the escort, whether it was Jankovic that told us or
9 Momir Nikolic.
10 Q. And that sentence is incorrect when it says that you are
11 completely certain that on that day, 13 July, you did not see
12 Momir Nikolic, who knew -- you knew very well personally. It's not
13 correct, is it?
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Objection. Objection. This is
15 a misquote. The sentence says:
16 "I am sure that day in Konjevic Polje," and my learned friend did
17 not quote that, "I did not see Momir Nikolic."
18 JUDGE ORIE: No, that's not what the statement in English says,
19 unless there's any -- any translation issue, we'll have that verified.
20 But as a matter of fact, Mr. Gillett is quoting the English version of
21 the statement accurately, and I think --
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] That's right.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please read before you object, Mr. Stojanovic.
24 Please proceed.
25 MR. GILLETT:
1 Q. Sir, that sentence, and I'll read it again, in your statement at
2 paragraph 12:
3 "What I am completely certain of is that on that day, 13 July, I
4 did not see Momir Nikolic, whom I knew very well personally," is not
5 correct. You're not completely certain of that, are you?
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I'm just going to
7 repeat once again that I think obviously we have a problem here. In the
8 English translation this word is missing, and in the B/C/S it doesn't
9 sound that way.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Well, let's have a look at --
11 MR. GILLETT: I'm looking at the B/C/S now and --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, there's a fair chance that there is a
13 translation issue there because in the B/C/S, I see in the second
14 sentence which refers to the 13th of July also at least refers to
15 Konjevic Polje and in the same sentence refers to Momir Nikolic. So it
16 should be verified very carefully.
17 MR. GILLETT: Thank you.
18 Q. Now, sir, if I could --
19 MR. GILLETT: Unless Your Honours have any further questions on
20 that point.
21 JUDGE ORIE: No, but I have one observation.
22 Mr. Stojanovic, if you would take care that you present proper
23 translations rather than to start objecting to what Mr. Gillett does. As
24 a matter of fact, objecting to him using the material you have provided
25 which is inaccurate, you should have verified it first before you came to
1 court instead of creating problems for Mr. Gillett.
2 Please proceed, Mr. Gillett. We have no further questions on the
4 MR. GILLETT:
5 Q. If I could jump back in time to earlier on 13 July, you've
6 mentioned the events at Sandici meadow while you were escorting Mladic
7 along the Bratunac-Konjevic Polje road. Now, in your statement, you say
8 that Mladic spoke to the prisoners at Sandici and that you could hear
9 everything he was saying; correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. And when Mladic was speaking to the prisoners, he told them to
12 get their fellow Bosnian Muslims to surrender from the surrounding area;
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. He also told them that they had been cheated by Naser Oric;
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And that they had been cheated by the president of Bosnia, who I
19 take it you meant Izetbegovic; right?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. If we look at paragraph 8 of your statement, which I hope is
22 translated correctly, we see your description of the Mladic speech to the
23 prisoners at Sandici. Here you say --
24 MR. GILLETT: And this should be on -- over the page in English.
25 Q. And this is the -- halfway through the paragraph, you say:
1 "The general addressed them in a very conciliatory voice, telling
2 them not be afraid, as they would be exchanged for the imprisoned Serbs,
3 and asked them if anyone was ill and needed to see a doctor. As far as I
4 remember, none of them responded. I was in direct proximity and heard
5 all of this."
6 You don't mention there that Mladic told the prisoners to call
7 their fellow Bosnian Muslims to surrender from the surrounding area, do
9 A. I didn't mention that. That's right.
10 Q. Sir, you know that most of the Muslims who surrendered that day
11 were then taken and executed at locations such as Kravica warehouse in
12 Bratunac and Zvornik; correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. How many prisoners did you see at Sandici meadow; do you recall?
15 A. I wasn't counting them. I cannot say now. Well, I don't know.
16 I don't know exactly how many. In my estimate, well, I stated it was
17 100. Perhaps it was more than that, but they were in a group. So quite
18 simply, I mean, I wasn't counting and I did not have time to -- I mean,
19 quite simply, we had to provide security there at that location where the
20 general was.
21 MR. GILLETT: Could we get 65 ter 32111. This is, again, the
22 report of the investigations by the US authorities. And if we go to
23 page 19, the second paragraph.
24 If we could get English. I'm seeing only B/C/S on the second
25 half of the screen. Thank you.
1 Q. The third paragraph down states:
2 "Going towards Bratunac, on the right (south), there was a huge
3 meadow at Sandici where people who surrendered from the Muslim column in
4 the hills travelling to Tuzla were being held. There were VRS soldiers
5 and he believes also special police units present guarding the prisoners.
6 Blagojevic named their commander as Ljubisa Boroc.
7 "Blagojevic stated he was unsure of the number of prisoners being
8 held there, possibly 500 to 1.000. There were only men, as the women and
9 children had surrendered in Potocari. He identified the men as Muslims
10 from Srebrenica, and when questioned on how he knew this, he affirmed
11 that General Mladic referred to them as such."
12 Does that refresh your memory that there was a group of between
13 500 to 1.000 prisoners at Sandici?
14 A. Well, I've said, it's possible there were from 300 to 500 to
15 1.000. I mean, I don't know. They were out there in the meadow. Now
16 how many of them were there, I cannot tell you exactly. I cannot give
17 you an exact figure. It's possible that there were up to 500, around
19 Q. You state here it's possible there were up to 1.000. Do you
20 accept that there could have been that many, or do you dispute that?
21 A. I dispute that, that it was up to 1.000. But, again, I'm telling
22 you, I cannot say exactly whether there were 300, whether there were 500,
23 whether there were 400. It's possible that there were up to 500. Around
25 Q. Sir, the -- I'm going to ask you about the special police
1 commander that you mention.
2 MR. GILLETT: Could we get the 65 ter 18954 on the monitor.
3 JUDGE FLUEGGE: While this comes up, I would like to ask the
4 witness the following.
5 You said - this can be found on page 66, lines 21 and 22 - "Well,
6 I've said it's possible there were from 3- to 500 to 1.000."
7 Five lines you say: "I dispute that, that it was up to 1.000."
8 What is true? To dispute 1.000 after having said it's possible
9 that there were up to 1.000?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I dispute that there were 1.000 of
11 them. In terms of my visual viewing of that meadow. I dispute that.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Why did you first say "it's possible that there
13 were from 300 to 500 to 1.000"? That is what you said before.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I'm telling you, quite
15 simply, in that meadow, at first sight, I mean, that's what it was like,
16 that there were lots of them. Now, as for this figure, what I said, I'm
17 not sure. But I'm telling you now, now going back, replaying these
18 memories, I doubt that there were more than 500 of them.
19 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I don't think that is correct to say playing
20 memories. It's a very serious matter.
21 Please continue.
22 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, do you recognise the person in this picture?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Who is it?
1 A. Ljubisa Borovcanin.
2 Q. And he's the special police commander you saw at Sandici;
4 A. I think he was. Special police commander.
5 Q. To clarify, you think he was the police commander, special police
6 commander, you saw at Sandici. Did I understand you right?
7 A. I think it's him. I'm not 100 per cent sure. But the special
8 police was the special police for us. They had blue uniforms. They
9 didn't have uniforms like the army. They had different uniforms and they
10 were called special police. And I think that he was commander of that
11 special police.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Could I take the witness back to the number issue.
13 You say -- you don't know exactly, but anywhere within 300 and
14 500, that's what you consider a fair possibility, isn't it?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Why did you say in your statement that there
17 were around 100?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know. I'm telling you yet
19 again, I wasn't counting them, but when I --
20 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, I'm going to stop you there. You explained
21 all that. You earlier said up to 1.000 and now you say, Well, today I
22 tell you 300 to 500. That's approximately what had you to think in --
24 In your statement, you say 100, "around 100," which is a
25 considerably lower number compared to what you tell us today. And I'm
1 asking you for an explanation as why you mentioned "around 100," whereas
2 today you tell us that it was three to five times as much as what you
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't know now why I said
5 that, 100.
6 JUDGE ORIE: But you attested to that. You told us that that is
7 the truth. You corrected minor details in your statement. Why didn't
8 you correct this one?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I really don't know about that.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
11 MR. GILLETT:
12 Q. Sir, the person on the screen in front of you - and I'm referring
13 obviously to the man in the foreground - he is the special police
14 commander that you referred to or is referred to in the report as
15 Ljubisa Boroc that I just mentioned. It is, in fact,
16 Ljubomir Borovcanin, correct, who is shown in this picture?
17 A. Yes.
18 MR. GILLETT: Could I tender this picture, which --
19 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
20 MR. GILLETT: -- is 18954 for the record.
21 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, the number would be P7185.
22 JUDGE ORIE: And is admitted into evidence.
23 MR. GILLETT: Thank you.
24 Q. Now, sir, he was present when yourself and Mladic were at Sandici
25 meadow; correct? And I'm talking about Ljubomir Borovcanin.
1 A. No. As far as I can remember, he wasn't.
2 Q. You realise that shortly after you and Mladic stopped at Sandici
3 meadow, prisoners from there, Muslim prisoners, were taken and executed
4 at Kravica warehouse; correct?
5 A. I don't know about that. I don't know where they were taken. I
6 wasn't there.
7 Q. Sir, you've mentioned that you know and you knew in July 1995
8 Mile Petrovic; right?
9 A. Yes, yes.
10 Q. Did you hear about him killing Muslim prisoners?
11 A. I heard that in Momir Nikolic's statement, the one that I read,
12 that he said that he had killed some Muslims in Konjevic Polje. That is
13 to say, that is something I heard and read from Momir Nikolic's
15 Q. When did you read the statement?
16 A. While I was in America. I read it on the computer.
17 Q. Can you recall what year?
18 A. I am not sure. Maybe 2004, 2005. I'm not sure.
19 MR. GILLETT: Your Honours, I'm about to move to a new topic.
20 I'm wondering how close we are to the break as --
21 JUDGE ORIE: We are extremely close to the break. It's time for
22 a break.
23 Witness, we'd like to see you back in 20 minutes. You may follow
24 the usher now.
25 [The witness stands down]
1 JUDGE ORIE: We resume at quarter to 2.00.
2 --- Recess taken at 1.24 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 1.45 p.m.
4 JUDGE ORIE: I have another matter where we are still waiting for
5 information that relates to the testimony of Slavko Puhalic.
6 During his testimony on 12th of February of this year, D899,
7 which is a video, was marked for identification, pending information from
8 the Defence including the date and shooting location of the video and the
9 number of sequences included in the video. You can find that at
10 transcript pages 31649 to 651.
11 And the question is whether the Defence is now in a position to
12 provide this information. And I do not immediately expect an answer,
13 Mr. Lukic, but if that answer could be given this week, we would
14 appreciate that.
15 I could also set a deadline. The deadline is the 9th of March,
16 next Monday.
17 [The witness takes the stand]
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Gillett, please proceed.
20 MR. GILLETT: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours.
21 Q. Mr. Blagojevic, we've discussed earlier that you were ordered to
22 go and guard the Vuk Karadzic school in Bratunac on the evening of
23 13 July. And other military police from the Bratunac Brigade went with
24 you to carry out this guard duty; correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Can you remember which ones went with you?
2 A. I remember a number, but not all.
3 Q. Can you remember any of the names of the military police that
4 went with you?
5 A. Yes. There was a driver with me, Milovan Mitrovic. The
6 commander of the vehicle, Slobodan Mijatovic. I think there was
7 Pero Antolic [as interpreted], Borivoje Jakovljevic. And I don't
8 remember the rest.
9 Q. Would that be Pero Andric?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. When you arrived at the Vuk Karadzic school, were there other
12 military police or VRS members already present?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Do you know who they were?
15 A. You mean the names? Are you asking the names of military police
16 or the troops?
17 Q. If you know any of the names of any of the VRS members that were
18 present when you arrived at the Vuk Karadzic school, could you tell us.
19 A. Well, I don't remember the names exactly, but there was also the
20 civilian police. The police in blue uniform was there, not only the army
21 police. I really don't remember the names.
22 Q. Do you remember if the military police were from the
23 Bratunac Brigade?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. When you went to carry out this guard duty with your fellow
1 members of your military police group that you've mentioned, you were
2 armed; correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And where were you located when you were carrying out this guard
6 A. Can I get a sketch of the school, a drawing of the schoolhouse
7 and the area around it?
8 Q. How about I suggest that you were located in front of the
9 Vuk Karadzic school. Would that -- does that sound correct?
10 A. Before the school but not exactly outside the school. Not
11 directly in front of the school, but more towards the municipal building,
12 to the right.
13 Q. While you were there, armed Bosnian Serbs took Muslim prisoners
14 off buses and killed them behind the Vuk Karadzic school; correct?
15 A. When?
16 Q. While you were present on the evening, the night of 13 July 1995.
17 A. No. No, I did not see any killings.
18 Q. Are you aware whether you saw or heard of any armed Bosnian Serbs
19 taking Muslim prisoners off the buses and killing them behind the
20 Vuk Karadzic school on 13 July?
21 A. I heard that, but I didn't see it.
22 MR. GILLETT: If we could get 65 ter document 32111. Again, this
23 is the report of the US investigation. And if we go to page 4.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Could I meanwhile ask a clarification.
25 You said: "I heard that, but I didn't see it."
1 Did you hear that it happened later on? Or did you hear shots
2 being fired? What did you mean by "I heard that"?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Later on, I heard that some men had
4 taken Muslims out and killed them. And the next morning, I saw a couple
5 of corpses outside the school. But I didn't see the fact. We arrived at
6 the school perhaps around midnight. And the next morning, at sunrise, I
7 saw outside the school, if you are facing the school, then to the right
8 side, there were four or five dead bodies.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Did you hear any shots being fired?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During the night? Yes, I heard
11 shots several times.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Shots from nearby?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
15 MR. GILLETT:
16 Q. Did some of the shots that you heard come from inside the
17 Vuk Karadzic school?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. I'll now read an excerpt from the report, which is still on the
20 monitor, and I'm starting five lines down, where it says:
21 "After the fall of Srebrenica, Blagojevic was assigned to
22 General Mladic's security detail for the following 12 to 24 hours. When
23 this detail was completed, Blagojevic and eight other military policemen
24 were ordered to assist in securing the Muslim prisoners at the elementary
25 school in Bratunac. Blagojevic stated that when he came on to the scene
1 that evening, he observed approximately 20 to 30 buses lined up on the
2 road in front of the school and they extended down to the soccer stadium.
3 "Blagojevic described the elementary school, grades 1 through 8,
4 as a three-storey structure with classrooms on each floor. Blagojevic
5 did not enter the school while the prisoners were there. Blagojevic
6 claimed that he and the eight other military policemen were in a truck in
7 front of the school guarding the premises. Throughout the evening,
8 Blagojevic observed armed Bosnian Serb civilians taking prisoners off the
9 buses, some being struck with the butt of their rifles as they were being
10 led behind the elementary school."
11 JUDGE ORIE: You're reading, Mr. Gillett.
12 MR. GILLETT: "Blagojevic would then hear several gun-shots and
13 the civilians would return without the prisoners. Also during the
14 evening, Blagojevic heard automatic weapons fire coming from inside the
15 elementary school. He claimed that many of the Muslim prisoners may have
16 tried to escape. Blagojevic stated that he entered the school the next
17 morning and saw the bodies of 10 to 15 Muslim men in a second-floor
18 hallway that were killed."
19 Q. Sir, you say here that you heard gun-fire from inside the school
20 and that the following day you saw ten to 15 Muslim men in a second-floor
21 hallway that were killed. Did you see which armed Bosnian Serbs entered
22 the school and killed the prisoners?
23 A. No, I didn't see it. I heard gun-fire. I don't know how much.
24 It was early in the morning. I was tired because we had been kept busy
25 with escorting the general the whole previous day, but I was woken up by
1 sounds of gun-fire, maybe around 2.00 or 3.00 a.m., and there was
2 gun-fire from inside the school, and we heard that there had been an
3 attempt by the Muslims to escape.
4 Q. You were on guard duty. Did you attempt to ascertain who was
5 firing the guns inside the school?
6 A. We actually got the task to guard the civilians in Bratunac
7 because there were many captured Muslims there. That's what we were
8 told. And there were few army troops because our army units had nearly
9 all been transferred to Zepa, so there were few soldiers on guard duty
10 with the police. And I also heard that civilian and military police went
11 from house to house and rounded up younger and not-so-young men to guard
12 those Muslims in the school and around the school.
13 Q. You haven't answered my question, which was: You were guarding
14 the Vuk Karadzic school, and I note that you were armed. Did you attempt
15 to ascertain who was firing the guns from inside the school?
16 A. No. No, I did not have that authority.
17 Q. Who gave you the authority to fire the Browning machine-gun at
18 the window of the school when you claimed that a Muslim tried to escape?
19 A. I said clearly that I did not shoot. The Browning gun was used
20 that night, but I didn't shoot, although I was convicted for it. While
21 in the escort detail of General Mladic, I manned the Browning gun. The
22 Browning gun did open fire at the school that night, but I'm not the one
23 who fired it, and I don't feel guilty of that. I said that at the
25 Q. Who was the one that fired it then? According to you.
1 A. I don't know. I don't know who fired. When this gun-fire was
2 heard around 2.00 or 3.00 a.m., when there was automatic gun-fire from
3 the school, I had just fallen asleep. I was by the Browning gun. And,
4 later on, I walked, like when you go from the station towards the school,
5 I took a walk to the right up to the municipal building.
6 Q. Sir, you've mentioned a number of killings at the Vuk Karadzic
7 school. Did you report these killings up the chain of command? And I'm
8 talking about the killings on the evening of 13 July.
9 A. I think the superiors knew that. I wasn't alone there. No, I
10 did not report it.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Could I seek clarification of one of your previous
13 When that Browning gun was fired, had you been away at that
14 moment? Is that how we have to understand it? Or were asleep next to
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I told you, when there was this
17 gun-fire, automatic fire from the school from infantry weapons, when the
18 Muslims tried to escape, fire was opened. That's what I was told. They
19 said, The Muslims are trying to escape, and that's when the fire was
21 I then woke up, and perhaps ten minutes later, I got off the
22 Pinzgauer on which the Browning gun was mounted, and I took a walk
23 towards the municipal building, to the right of the school.
24 JUDGE ORIE: So you were there to guard? Then there's firing
25 from within the school? You wake up and you say, Let's take a walk. Is
1 that how I have to understand your testimony?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I took a walk perhaps half an
3 hour later because this gun-fire was short. It wasn't a long time. I
4 don't know how long exactly, but it woke me up. It jolted me out of
5 sleep. But then everything was quiet. And I took a walk later. I
6 wasn't walking when the gun-fire was heard. Did you understand me now?
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I understand you now. And I also noticed that
8 where you earlier said after approximately ten minutes, you now say after
9 approximately half an hour.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know how long exactly it
11 was, 10, 15 minutes, but the gun-fire had stopped. Everything was quiet.
12 There was no noise whatsoever. Whether it was ten or 15 or 20 minutes, I
13 don't know. In any case, there was absolutely no gun-fire when I left
14 the vehicle.
15 JUDGE ORIE: When you left the vehicle, you were there on guard
16 duty? You left the weapon without anyone being in charge of that weapon?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, there were other men there,
18 both army members and military police. The vehicle was not left
20 JUDGE ORIE: But who was then in charge of a vehicle which was
21 carrying a -- well, a relatively heavy weapon? Who was responsible for
22 that weapon at that point in time?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know. I don't know,
24 because it's just that when we set off as a security detail for the
25 general, they told me that I am in charge of the Browning, but they
1 didn't say it like it was strictly my responsibility: You have to take
2 care of it, et cetera. So when I left the vehicle, I literally went to
3 stretch my legs, to shake off sleep. It's not only I who was tired.
4 Other people were tired too.
5 JUDGE ORIE: I see all of that. I do hear your answers. But no
6 one apparently then was in charge of the Browning at that point in time,
7 because you were before, although you say not formally. But who then was
8 this charge of this weapon?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I left the vehicle. Anyone from
10 the military police or an army member, if required, could use that
11 weapon. It was not my personal weapon.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: If I may just -- I probably didn't understand your
14 answers to the Judge.
15 You say you were asleep when you were woken up by gun-fire coming
16 from the school.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Now, when the Browning was shot into the school,
19 where were you?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was out there in the street,
21 perhaps 100 or 150 metres away from the Browning gun.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's what the Judge had asked you, and I didn't
23 think you answered that.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Gillett.
25 MR. GILLETT:
1 Q. Sir, you realise that at least five witnesses gave evidence that
2 you were the one that fired the Browning gun on 13 July at the
3 Vuk Karadzic school in the incident that you've just described during
4 your trial for crimes against humanity in Bosnia; right? You know that.
5 A. Yes. But I repeat again: The Browning gun did fire. I didn't.
6 It's true I was convicted before the court in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I
7 said I've served my sentence but I don't feel guilty.
8 Q. Sir, you mentioned --
9 MR. GILLETT: Sorry.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: When you returned from your walk and you had heard
11 the Browning go off and you had been told to be in charge of the
12 Browning, did you investigate as to who shot the gun?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I inquired, I asked who fired
14 and the answer I got was: It's not -- no business of yours.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thanks.
16 Mr. Gillett.
17 MR. GILLETT:
18 Q. Who gave you that answer?
19 A. Well, those military policemen and the army troops who were
21 Q. Sir, you've mentioned killings inside the school. It's also true
22 that that evening a mentally handicapped Bosnian Muslim prisoner was
23 dragged off one of the buses parked outside the school by military police
24 and killed; correct?
25 A. Could you repeat that question?
1 Q. You've mentioned killings inside the school. But it's also true
2 that a Bosnian Muslim handicapped -- mentally handicapped man was dragged
3 off one of the buses parked outside the school by military police and
4 then killed; correct?
5 A. No, I didn't mention that. I said that I had heard shooting in
6 the school, but I did not say anything about that handicapped person.
7 Q. Sir, I'm not asking whether you said that previously. I'm asking
8 whether you know that that occurred on 13 July.
9 A. I don't know about that.
10 Q. The next morning, 14 July, you were still guarding with military
11 police outside the Vuk Karadzic school; correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And you stayed there until 3.00 or 4.00 in the afternoon guarding
14 the school; right?
15 A. I stayed till the end, but I can't remember the exact time. But,
16 yes, I did stay there.
17 Q. Would you accept that it would have been mid-afternoon, around
18 3.00 or 4.00 p.m. that you stayed there until before you headed with the
19 convoy of buses towards Zvornik?
20 A. I can agree with that, but I'm not sure about the time. It's
21 possible. I don't know whether it was 2.00 or 3.00. I don't know about
22 the time, but I agree with the rest.
23 MR. GILLETT: Can we get -- and I see the break coming, but if I
24 could quickly ask this question.
25 If we could get 65 ter document 32112. And this is the
1 transcript -- if we could get the transcript page 87 of the first
2 interview carried out with the US authorities, and I note there was an
3 ICTY representative present at this interview as well. So that's
4 page 87.
5 Q. And I'll read the English, and I will put it to that you this is
6 very clearly talking about 14 July. You say --
7 MR. GILLETT: Sorry. If we could go back a page, to page 86
8 first. Thank you.
9 The final line of this page says:
10 "What time did you remain at the school that day?"
11 And if we turn over to the next page.
12 Q. The next English is:
13 "The whole day. The whole day next day until 3.00 or 4.00 in the
14 afternoon," and that's the interpretation of your answer.
15 So do you accept now that it was 3.00 or 4.00 in the afternoon
16 that you stayed there until?
17 A. I said that, but concerning the time -- but I agree. I agree
18 that it was 3.00 or 4.00. The time doesn't matter. It could have been
19 2.00 or 3.00 or 4.00. But if I said that, yes, it's possible. I agree.
20 Q. Well, it's possible or you agree? Do you agree with what is said
21 there, what you previously stated?
22 A. I cannot be 100 per cent sure about the time. I cannot give you
23 the exact time. It was 20 years ago.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Witness, 20 -- at a time of taking this
25 statement, you also did not give an exact time. You said 3.00 or 4.00.
1 Do you agree that it could have been 3.00 or 4.00? It's not an exact
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I agree.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
5 MR. GILLETT: Are we close to the break?
6 JUDGE ORIE: Well, we are beyond the break time as a matter of
8 MR. GILLETT: Apologies.
9 JUDGE ORIE: That's --
10 MR. GILLETT: I still do have further questions but I
11 imagine [overlapping speakers] --
12 JUDGE ORIE: But if it would be a half a question, then we could
13 consider --
14 MR. GILLETT: No, no.
15 JUDGE ORIE: There's more to be said. Okay. Then we'll adjourn
16 for the day.
17 Mr. Stojanovic.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Before we adjourn, Your Honour,
19 just a small request, and I announced it to my colleagues in the OTP. I
20 have a medical appointment tomorrow and I notified, if we don't finish
21 today, I wanted to address you that if there is any need for re-direct,
22 that will be handled by my colleague, Mr. Branko Lukic.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Although it's quite uncommon, if the Prosecution has
24 no objection to it -- Mr. Lukic has been present during the whole of the
25 examination of the witness and the cross-examination.
1 MR. GILLETT: There's no objection from the Prosecution.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Then Mr. Branko Lukic is allowed to ask any
3 questions in re-direct, if -- yes, Mr. Stojanovic.
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just one more
5 sentence at the suggestion of Mr. Mladic. If the Prosecution does not
6 have much more time and if they will show some understanding, maybe if
7 they don't have much longer, we can finish perhaps today.
8 JUDGE ORIE: No, there's no way to finish today because I have
9 commitments elsewhere as well.
10 And apart from that, Mr. Gillett, how much time would you still
12 MR. GILLETT: It's about 15 or 20 minutes. It can vary according
13 to the answers.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, there's no way that we could finish today.
15 Witness, we adjourn for the day. We'd like to see you back
16 tomorrow morning at 9.30. Well, you know more or less how much more time
17 there will be for cross-examination. It's expected that we'll conclude
18 your testimony tomorrow and relatively early.
19 Before you leave this courtroom, I'd like to instruct you - and
20 you should take those instructions very seriously - instruct you not to
21 speak or communicate in whatever way, with whomever, about your
22 testimony, whether that is testimony you have given today or whether that
23 is testimony still to be given tomorrow. If that's clear to you, you may
24 follow the usher.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's clear.
1 [The witness stands down]
2 JUDGE ORIE: We'll adjourn for the day, and we'll resume
3 tomorrow, Thursday, the 5th of March, 9.30 in the morning, in this same
4 courtroom, I.
5 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.19 p.m.,
6 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 5th day of March,
7 2015, at 9.30 a.m.