1 Wednesday, 22 April 2015
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.33 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 Mr. Lukic, the Chamber has considered whether -- how much time it
12 would grant for your re-examination. I don't know, let me first ask what
13 you have on your mind at this moment.
14 MR. LUKIC: I tried to be really as short as possible, but at
15 least two hours. Yesterday we had that videolink that and we had many
16 problems with the recording and with translating. We have to go through
17 many things. There are many holes in the transcript as well.
18 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber will consider after one hour and please
19 focus then on the most important matters whether it should grant a second
21 We have, apart from some other thoughts we have on the matter,
22 but apart from that, there's also a very practical matter that your next
23 witness we have this week the videolink, and therefore, I take it that we
24 would like to conclude the evidence of the next witness as well this
25 week. That means by tomorrow.
1 So would you please be very focussed and after the first break
2 we'll consider whether more time will be granted.
3 Could we establish whether the videolink is functioning? Could
4 the representative of the Registry at the other side confirm that he
5 hears as well and that he sees us.
6 THE REGISTRAR: [Via videolink] Good morning, Your Honours. Thank
7 you. Yes, I confirm that I can hear and see you clearly.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness be escorted in the videolink room.
9 And may I take it, as yesterday, there's only one other person in that
10 room, that is the technician?
11 THE REGISTRAR: [Via videolink] That's correct, Your Honour. Yes,
12 since yesterday, that's been the case.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. And please proceed to escort the witness
14 into the courtroom.
15 [The witness takes the stand]
16 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning, Mr. Basara.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Before we continue --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE ORIE: -- I'd like to remind you that you're still bound by
21 the solemn declaration that you've given at the beginning of your
22 testimony. Mr. Lukic will now re-examine you.
23 Mr. Lukic.
24 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honours.
25 WITNESS: BRANKO BASARA [Resumed]
1 [Witness answered through interpreter]
2 [Witness testified via videolink]
3 Re-examination by Mr. Lukic:
4 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Basara.
5 A. Good morning.
6 Q. Today we will have to move on a bit faster because our time is
7 limited so do try to give answers that are as short as possible.
8 When you were asked -- actually, maybe it would be faster. I've
9 already indicated there were problems with the transcript. I'm just
10 going to say something to the Trial Chamber now, Mr. Basara.
11 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] 34398 is the transcript page. This
12 is what was recorded. In line 2 and further on, I quote: [In English]
13 "Based on my orders that I brought the brigade in with the task of
14 preparing conflict in the territory of municipality of Sanski Most."
15 What the Defence heard at that time was "preventing conflict."
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: I think the correct way to do is to ask the
17 witness can you repeat what you said.
18 MR. LUKIC: That was my dilemma: Should I hurry up or go step by
20 JUDGE ORIE: The best way of dealing with it, of course, if the
21 witness misspoke he's the one who should correct. If it is a wrong
22 recording you should have verified that yesterday.
23 MR. LUKIC: In B/C/S it is completely two words, two different
24 words so we think it in translation. Preventing, preparing.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated]
1 MR. LUKIC: Yeah, but the sound can sound similar. In B/C/S, it
2 cannot. But I can ask or it's too late.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE ORIE: Let me have a look.
5 Yes, you should ask the witness, Mr. -- there's the only thing.
6 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. [Interpretation] So, Mr. Basara, what was your task when you came
8 to the area of Sanski Most? What was the task that you were given?
9 A. The brigade was given the task to prevent conflicts between
10 Serbs, Croats and Muslims.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 MR. LUKIC: Can we have P2865 on our screens, please.
13 Q. [Interpretation] While we're waiting for that, I don't know
14 whether you can see that on the screen over there or whether you're given
15 hard copies.
16 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We cannot hear the
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Mr. Basara, on the screen, can you see that document?
20 A. Yes, I see this order from the corps to the division.
21 Q. Thank you. You were shown the last paragraph under number 1
22 where it says: "Establish full co-operation with the organs of
23 government in Sanski Most municipality and co-ordination with TO units
24 and police units."
25 A. I see that.
1 Q. At that time --
2 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We did not hear the date
3 that Mr. Lukic mentioned. He is speaking too fast for interpretation.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic. Mr. Lukic, the interpreters are asking
5 you to slow down and they missed the date.
6 MR. LUKIC: I'm sorry, since it's a videolink I cannot follow
7 English channel so I don't --
8 JUDGE ORIE: That's why I draw your attention to it.
9 MR. LUKIC: So it's -- I mentioned April the 1st, 1992.
10 Q. [Interpretation] So, sir, your answer hasn't been recorded.
11 Please tell us again. What was the ethnicity of the man who headed the
12 TO in Sanski Most at the time?
13 A. At the time, it was Captain Nijaz Halilovic, an ethnic Muslim,
14 who headed the TO Staff, and he told me that he had declared himself to
15 be a Yugoslav.
16 Q. Thank you. Same question was put in relation to document P7324.
17 This is what I'm going ask you: To what extent were you geared towards
18 civilian authorities and to what extent were they geared towards you in
19 1992 in Sanski Most?
20 A. At the time, I was mostly geared towards the civilian authorities
21 in terms of manning the brigade. That is to say, during mobilisation in
22 co-operation with the Secretariat for National Defence. They had nothing
23 special to do with me. It wasn't that I had any special requests
24 received from them to give them some kind of assistance.
25 Q. Very well. Thank you. Can we now briefly look at P23465,
2 JUDGE ORIE: That's a -- a very high number, Mr. Lukic.
3 MR. LUKIC: P2365.
4 [Interpretation] In relation to this document, we wish to inform
5 the Trial Chamber that although the translation has been uploaded, even
6 this revised translation is not right, so we really have to look at this
7 with the OTP and they noticed some mistakes even in the revised
9 Q. So, Mr. Rasula -- actually, Mr. Basara, I would like to ask you:
10 How did you find out that Rasula and Vrkes went to see General Talic to
11 ask for your replacement?
12 A. General Talic told me and I heard people talking about that from
13 others who had more contact with Rasula and Vrkes, that they were not
14 satisfied with my work and that they went to Banja Luka to see Talic.
15 Q. Is there anything specific in regard to their complaints or was
16 it just in general terms?
17 A. Nothing specific. I can just tell you about a clash I had with
18 Rasula, but I can tell you one thing. When Talic told me that they had
19 come to ask him to replace me, and then he said to me, Leave it as it is,
20 go on working the way you've been working so far.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] P3294, please.
23 Q. This document was shown to you. This is Nedjeljko Rasula's
24 diary. At least that's what it says.
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We need the pages that were shown to
1 you by the OTP; 22 in English and in the B/C/S version, page 20.
2 We need the very top of the left part of the page in B/C/S.
3 Q. What is written here is that this is a meeting held on 20th
4 April 1992 and it says: "With General Talic, Colonel Basara,
5 Major Zeljaja, representatives of the SDS, SDA, and the HDZ."
6 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Lukic, I don't think we are on the right page
7 in English. Perhaps it's the next one.
8 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Obviously. Thank you.
9 Q. [Interpretation] Yesterday you mentioned --
10 JUDGE ORIE: We still are not on the right page, I'm afraid. It
11 should be --
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The date should be on the previous page. That's
14 MR. LUKIC: Yes --
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: [Overlapping speakers] ...
16 MR. LUKIC: The rest is on this page, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
18 MR. LUKIC: The top of the -- yeah.
19 Q. [Interpretation] On page 34436 of our transcript, you said that
20 there is a Lieutenant-Colonel Talic and that you think that he's been
21 confused with General Talic.
22 A. My opinion now is - because I cannot remember at all - that
23 General Talic attended together with me at all, but I do remember that
24 Lieutenant-Colonel Talic did attend. I think his first name is Mustafa
25 or something like that. He came several times to the municipal assembly,
1 and he probably came there in relation to his family, wanting to have his
2 family protected and things like that.
3 Q. What is the ethnicity of Lieutenant-Colonel Talic?
4 A. He's a Muslim. And he was serving in Banja Luka.
5 Q. Thank you. Now what is written here further down is attendees.
6 I'm going to read out what was recorded but maybe if you know the full
7 names and surnames you can tell us as well as the ethnicity.
8 Mirzet, do you know who that?
9 A. I do. He was president of the Executive Board of the Municipal
11 Q. Redzo?
12 A. Redzo, president of the SDA.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Can we -- could you ask the witness for the full
14 name of these people.
15 MR. LUKIC: Yeah.
16 Q. [Interpretation] Do you know Mirzet's last name?
17 A. Mirzet Karabegovic or Karabeg or something like that, and Redzo
18 is Kurbegovic.
19 Q. What is the ethnicity?
20 A. Muslim, and they were the main people in the Muslim leadership.
21 Q. Sabic is the next one recorded here. Do you know his first
22 naming and what his ethnicity is?
23 A. Suad Sabic. He was also a delegate there at the assembly and he
24 was rather influential amongst them, but he was also rather objective in
25 his discussions.
1 Q. What was his ethnicity?
2 A. Muslim.
3 Q. Ante is the next one recorded here.
4 A. Ante, I think his last name was Saric or something like that. He
5 was president of the HDZ and during all debates in the Municipal Assembly
6 whenever I took part in the debate, he was the one who supported me the
8 Q. What is Ante's ethnicity?
9 A. He's a Croat.
10 Q. The last one written down here is Vlado. Do you know who that
12 A. Vlado Vrkes. He was present of the Serb Democratic Party.
13 Q. Ethnicity?
14 A. Serb.
15 Q. Thank you. Nedjeljko Rasula was president of the Crisis Staff.
16 Did he chair meetings of the Crisis Staff when you were present?
17 A. Then, no. This was not a meeting of the Crisis Staff. Because
18 the Crisis Staff hadn't been established then, because the Municipal
19 Assembly was functioning. Later on the Crisis Staff was established when
20 there was a division of power.
21 Q. Precisely. However, when Rasula became president of the Crisis
22 Staff, did he chair meetings of the Crisis Staff that you attended?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. While he chaired these meetings, did he keep this diary? Could
25 you see that?
1 A. I could not see that. I could not see him keeping a diary. I
2 just saw Colonel Anicic writing something down all the time.
3 Q. Do you know at all when Rasula made these entries in his diary?
4 A. No insight whatsoever. Because after these meetings, I usually
5 went to my command post.
6 Q. Thank you. Did Rasula ask for these entries to be checked either
7 by you or somebody else? Do you know about that? Did he familiarize
8 other people, members of the Crisis Staff, with the entries made?
9 A. I'm not aware of any of this. And I did not have any possibility
10 of any kind of insight into any of this.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] P3294. Could we please take a look
13 that now.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: It's not the one on the screen?
15 MR. LUKIC: It is, Your Honour. I just checked, yes. Thank you.
16 [Interpretation] We need page 40 in English and page 30 in B/C/S.
17 We need the page on the right in B/C/S. The meeting on the 11th
18 of May, 1992. Thank you.
19 Q. You told us that you did not act on orders from the Crisis Staff.
20 Did the Crisis Staff act on orders that you issued?
21 A. They did not act on orders that I issued.
22 Q. You said something that was not recorded in the transcript. I
23 don't want to make a mistake, hence I will repeat my question.
24 Did your command or you personally receive decisions or
25 conclusions of the Crisis Staff?
1 A. We did not. We did not receive either conclusions or decisions
2 of the Crisis Staff, and we did not act upon them. That's one thing.
3 Another thing, as we can see from the documents, some of the
4 documents do not have a signature at the bottom proving that they were
5 compiled subsequently. Those that do bear Rasula's signature, there's no
6 distribution list, hence, there is no mention of the 6th Brigade being in
7 receipt of those documents.
8 Q. As an example, we'd like to show the following document to the
9 Chamber of the Sanski Most Crisis Staff. That is 240708. And 1-3, that
10 is 2413. We can see in those documents that they were not sent to the
11 address of the 6th Brigade.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Are you referring to a 65 ter number.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Overlapping speakers] ...
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: [Overlapping speakers] ... you should repeat.
15 MR. LUKIC: P2407, P2408, and P2413. Thank you, Your Honour,
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic, where you said we can see in those
18 documents they were not sent to the address of the 6th Brigade, well, I
19 take it that you cannot see that they were sent.
20 MR. LUKIC: There are traces where those three documents were
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
23 MR. LUKIC: There are addressees at the end.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, they do not appear among the addressees.
25 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE ORIE: That's what you wanted to say. That's not exactly
2 the same, but please proceed.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] This same document, we need the
4 English page 51 and the B/C/S page 36.
5 Q. At the very bottom of the page, under 1, we have you speaking,
6 Colonel Basara, that is. It is stated the TO has been given the status
7 of an army under a single command.
8 Apparently that was Rasula's note and it was read out to you -
9 just bear with me - it was read out to you by my learned friend
10 Mr. Jeremy at transcript page 34480. I will show you another document in
11 relation to this and the issue of whether the TO was given the status of
12 army on the date that Rasula noted down. We need an 8th June 1992
13 document for that reason.
14 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could Mr. Lukic kindly
15 repeat the number.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Could you repeat the number, Mr. Lukic.
17 MR. LUKIC: Yes. [Interpretation] P2414. The first page in both
18 versions, number 6. One of the conclusions reads --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Very well.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. "Should the Territorial Defence be abolished and the 6th Brigade
22 reorganised, a manoeuvre unit of company size should be formed from the
23 TO units and the police force of the SJB to carry disarming and other
24 actions in the competence of the SJB. The TO Staff and the SJB are
25 entrusted with this task."
1 A. I'm not familiar with it.
2 Q. Very well. So you were not familiar with the conclusion, but do
3 you know whether in June the TO Staff was still in operation?
4 A. I can't say exactly in terms of date and period, but the TO was
5 made part of the brigade at some point, and on that day, although I don't
6 remember what day it was, I appointed new battalion commanders. The
7 previous battalion commanders were replaced by me.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Next, can we please have P2874.
10 Q. At the beginning of your work yesterday, my learned friend
11 Mr. Jeremy suggested that the Serbs were in favour of separation from the
12 other two peoples, and he showed you this document to that effect. This
13 document was discussed at transcript page 34450 and onwards.
14 Very well. At the bottom of the page in B/C/S, it reads --
15 there's a sentence to that effect. So it's the last paragraph in B/C/S.
16 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It should be in English on top of the next page.
17 MR. LUKIC: That's right, Your Honour. Thank you.
18 Q. [Interpretation] It reads: "The constituent Serbian people, who
19 live on around 65 per cent of the area and represent more than 35
20 per cent of the population of BH, must struggle for complete separation
21 from the Muslim and Croatian peoples and form their own state."
22 It was mentioned in the 1st Krajina Corps command document of 21
23 May 1995 [as interpreted]. However, in this document, before the part
24 that we can see at the bottom of the page, we also read --
25 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could we go back to the
1 previous page in English. Thank you.
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And before you continue, it's not 1995 but 1992.
3 MR. LUKIC: 1992.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You were recorded as saying in 1995.
5 MR. LUKIC: Maybe I misspoke, I'm not sure. Thank you.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic, it was mentioned in the 1st Krajina
7 Corps command document. However, in this document, is this document not
8 also a Krajina Corps command document?
9 MR. LUKIC: I'm talking about the [Overlapping speakers] ...
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Overlapping speakers] ... the same date.
11 MR. LUKIC: The same document, yes.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. It reads in item 1, the fourth line: "Besides the realignments
15 in the spheres of idealogy, politics, and economy, and the system of
16 social value, the general settling of scores has also spread to state
17 territories, which are being redrawn."
18 There is mention made of the influence exerted by other states
19 and the attempt of creating midget states that could be manipulated in
20 this way.
21 My question is this: In terms of efforts for Yugoslavia to
22 survive, were they directed at divisions and separations, or at unity?
23 A. All I can say is, based on my personal work and my desire, as
24 well as my activity, and that is, before the situation in
25 Dobrovoljacka Street, the prevailing opinion was the -- in favour of the
1 preservation of the SFRY and that those republics, which had not seceded
2 and had not been recognised by international factors, to remain as part
3 of that Yugoslavia. However, following Dobrovoljacka Street and the
4 killing of several JNA members, soldiers and officers, there was a change
5 in situation. It was realised that the two peoples could no longer could
6 co-exist, especially Serbs and Muslims.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Lukic, for the sake of the record, your
8 quotation lines 12 to 15 I found it in document, but the next two lines,
9 I can't find it -- it's not a complete quotation.
10 MR. LUKIC: Yeah, it's summarisation. So I don't read
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Okay. That's only a summary of the following
13 passages of the document.
14 MR. LUKIC: Yes. Yes, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you.
16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. At the time, around the 21st of May, if you know, if you
18 followed, what was the status of non-Slovenians in Slovenia regarding the
19 issue of Slovenian citizenship?
20 A. The information I have, although I did not have extensive
21 contacts there but from what I could hear from the people coming from the
22 area, they stated that they were looking forward to having Serbs removed
23 from their territory, for them to go back to where they had come from.
24 Q. Do you know whether people lost Slovenian citizenship and how
25 long did that process last?
1 A. I don't know how long it lasted but I do know that there are
2 people who lost their citizenship and who were basically prohibited from
3 returning to the territory of Slovenia.
4 Q. In Croatia around the 21st of May, 1992, were the Serbs still a
5 constituent people?
6 A. In our understanding, the Serbs were a constituent people.
7 However, based on the opinion of Croatian authorities, they were not. At
8 that point in time, they were already considered a minority and they were
9 striving to drive them out from Croatian territory so that Serbs are no
10 longer there.
11 Q. In your view, what was the breaking point? You mentioned
12 Dobrovoljacka Street. What was the turning point? When did this change
13 for unity change -- this wish for unity change?
14 A. The turning point was Dobrovoljacka Street and the situation in
15 Tuzla when JNA units were withdrawing from the territory of
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina. They were attacked then, and quite a few members of
17 the JNA were killed. One could understand if it happened as the JNA --
18 as JNA was coming to the territory, but they were leaving and yet they
19 were killed. They were not placing the Muslim people in danger. And the
20 ones in Tuzla were even without arms. They had surrendered their weapons
21 and yet they were attacked.
22 Next, there was an incident in Kljuc. There was a unit coming
23 from Bosanski Petrovac. It was attacked and four JNA members were
25 Q. Thank you.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] For the record, I wanted to say
2 something about P7321 MFI. The Prosecution stated that it received it
3 from the AID agency, AID. On the cover page it is stated that it is the
4 notebook of the pioneers' platoon commander. We don't see that piece of
5 information in the document itself, and we are interested where it came
7 In the notebook, according to our lay opinion, there are
8 different handwritings, so we would like to know who made entries and
9 we'd like to hear a Prosecution submission on it. It also reads that it
10 is an excerpt, so we would be interested in who made the selection.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Is this a question to the witness or are you
12 addressing the Court.
13 MR. LUKIC: I'm addressing the court, Your Honour. [Overlapping
15 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps first use the time with the witness. You
16 could either have made any submissions in this respect -- it's all valid
17 points but not perhaps at this moment to address the Court in the --
18 MR. LUKIC: I didn't want to go through him with all of these
19 questions so that's why I'm trying to cut this down.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Well, the witness apparently doesn't know anything
21 about it so, therefore, it would be -- but it's on the record that you
22 still have your concerns about the authenticity of this document and you
23 address that later.
24 Please proceed.
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. At page of our transcript 34489, lines 10 through 15, you discuss
2 Mahala. Your sentence was left incomplete. It reads in line 15 and I'll
3 quote since there was overlapping of speakers.
4 [In English] "A. Three hours were given to get all of those out
5 who --"
6 [Interpretation] Mr. Basara, what was this that you were talking
7 about when you said that three hours were given.
8 A. Three hours were given for all of those who do not wish to fight,
9 that is to say, who do not wish to put up resistance when having their
10 weapons taken away they should leave Mahala and go to an area designated
11 for that where there was security so that they would not be under any
12 kind of threat. That means that those who stay on in Mahala were
13 resolved to fight and put up a resistance. That is the essence of this.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Lukic, however incomplete in this specific point
16 the transcript may be, the witness explained this three or four times to
17 us. So, therefore, there could be no doubt as what he would have said if
18 he would have completed that sentence.
19 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
21 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
22 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Basara, the people who went out, where were
23 they put up? Who took care of them?
24 A. They were put up in the area towards Pjevci and that area was
25 secured by parts of units of the 6th Brigade, and there were no
1 casualties there.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] P4161. Could we please take a look
4 that now.
5 Q. My colleague, Mr. Jeremy, showed you this document of the Crisis
6 Staff of Sanski Most of the 19th of June, 1992, and there was a
7 discussion about you being a member of the Crisis Staff.
8 You see, down here, number 7, you are mentioned as a permanent
9 member of the Crisis Staff. The question is whether you have ever
10 received a document informing you that you have become a member of the
11 Crisis Staff?
12 A. I received no document informing me that I was a member of the
13 Crisis Staff. Now that I think about it, I cannot even remember that
14 anyone communicated that to me, at all. So I, as brigade commander, for
15 the purpose of information and because of my wish to influence certain
16 matters so that they would evolve in a better way, to my mind, I came to
17 attend these meetings but I did not take part in decision-making there.
18 Q. Thank you. Did you ever accept any such thing? Did you ever
19 accept to be a member of the Crisis Staff?
20 A. No, I never accepted that. As a matter of fact, if I'm allowed
21 to do so, I would like to say that I once had this conflict with Rasula.
22 It had to do with the removal of street names, streets that were named
23 after national heros, partisans, and he said to me, I am issuing an order
24 to that effect and I said on the basis of what, president? We're not
25 under the command of the municipality, and he said, yes, under the
1 command of Karadzic he is the supreme commander, the president of the SDS
2 and I can issue orders to you. I replied sharply to him that he could
3 not give orders because there is a chain of command: Mladic, Talic,
4 brigade and that I am carrying out only orders issued by the 1st Krajina
5 Corps. So Rasula never tried to issue any orders to me again.
6 Q. Thank you. On page 34471, that is a reference to our transcript,
7 something was not recorded and I'm going to ask you something now and I
8 don't want to confuse you in any way because you probably think that
9 you've already said this but you did say that in line 13 on this page,
10 but it was not recorded in the transcript.
11 Under whose command was the Territorial Defence and the MUP in
12 Sanski Most?
13 A. They were the legal organs of the Municipal Assembly of
14 Sanski Most. That is to say, when the government was established all the
15 structures were there, all the structures that a municipality should
16 have. So they were under their command.
17 Q. You're talking about the municipal assembly while it existed and
18 what succeeded that structure.
19 A. After the take-over when they entered the municipal assembly,
20 then they established all the organs that a municipality should have.
21 Q. Thank you. Now I'd like us to take a brief look at D79. Again,
22 this is a document of the Crisis Staff of the Serb Municipality of
23 Sanski Most of the 22nd of May, 1992.
24 Number 1, the letter d on the first page. There was a discussion
25 and Judge Moloto asked you something about that. The order was that
1 Colonel Basara and Colonel Anicic should organise the protection of vital
2 facilities and your answer was not fully recorded, so I'd like to ask you
3 now whether you co-operated with Colonel Anicic with regard to this
5 A. Not at all. I did not co-operate with Colonel Anicic with regard
6 to this matter.
7 As for the facilities, I did not secure them. I only at that
8 time I just had 50 people in the centre of Sanski Most near the
9 warehouse, the arms depot, to protect that facility so that there would
10 not be a conflict in terms of who would take that facility over. Then
11 the president of the Executive Board, Mirza Karabeg, or Mirzet Karabeg as
12 I read just now, children were afraid when they saw soldiers in the
13 street so it would be a good idea for them to withdraw from Sanski Most
14 so then I withdrew these people from Sanski Most as well. That is to
15 say, they went home. So there were no soldiers providing any kind of
16 security including at various points in Sanski Most.
17 Q. Thank you. Whose arms depot was that?
18 A. Of the TO.
19 Q. Thank you. I'm going to ask you something else from this same
21 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] In English, we need page 2 and in
22 B/C/S page 3. We need paragraph 4 now on this page.
23 Q. Again, it was stated here as far as disarming paramilitary
24 formations in Sanski Most is concerned, as for the practical aspect it is
25 Colonel Basara and Colonel Anicic that are charged with putting this into
2 Yesterday you said that did you not have any joint actions with
3 Colonel Anicic with regard to this matter but now I'm going to ask you
4 something about the first and the second conclusions. Did you receive
5 these conclusions from the Crisis Staff? Were you given these
6 conclusions to carry out?
7 A. I did not receive these conclusions. I was not aware of them, so
8 I don't even know the time when they adopted this. Anicic did not come
9 to see me so that we would organise some kind of concerted action or
10 anything like that. So I did everything according to my own plan and my
11 own tasks.
12 Q. Thank you. Now just briefly in relation to Mahala. Yesterday my
13 colleague Mr. Jeremy asked you whether you knew that civilians had lost
14 their lives in Mahala, and your answer was yes. That is recorded on
15 transcript page 34496.
16 This is what I'm interested in. What do you know about this?
17 Tell us briefly.
18 A. I know that a few people lost their lives while combat was taking
19 place. As for accurate information as to how many there were, I don't
20 know. Where there is combat, where weapons are being fired, it is only
21 natural that people will lose their lives.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Could we briefly take a look at
24 Q. This is your interview, and I would like us to take look at
25 page 107, which happened to appear on our screens yesterday.
1 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
2 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The 65 ter number is --
3 MR. LUKIC: 27968.
4 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Indeed.
5 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
6 [Interpretation] Yesterday we were looking at the English
7 version, page 108, and the B/C/S version, page 134. So now I'd like to
8 ask that we take a look at the previous pages. So 107 in the English
9 version, and 130 ... I think 133.
10 [In English] We have to go one page back, please, in B/C/S. Now,
11 in English, 107. In B/C/S, one page back.
12 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I think we have been on the right page in B/C/S
13 previously. 133.
14 MR. LUKIC: Now it's line 18 in B/C/S, and it's line 3 in English
15 version on the pages we have on our screens.
16 Q. [Interpretation] You said there what happened around the mosques,
17 and this is what you say -- actually, I shouldn't read this out to you.
18 What did you do, if anything, in order to protect religious
19 buildings in the territory where your army was?
20 A. I ordered all battalion commanders to secure all religious
21 buildings within the areas of responsibility of their units and that they
22 should assign a certain number of men to guard them. That's what they
23 did. However, what would happen was that during the night, armed
24 people - no one could ever establish who that was - they would come from
25 the dark and threaten these people who were guarding the religious
1 facilities, saying that they would kill them if they wouldn't withdraw
2 and, of course, they would withdraw because nobody was prepared to get
3 killed either for a church or for a mosque.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Previous translation continues] ... finish in ten
5 minutes. Do you want me to continue.
6 JUDGE ORIE: If you can continue in ten minutes and if Mr. Mladic
7 would agree that you continue now for another ten minutes, but then, of
8 course, it's -- the Chamber does not oppose.
9 [Defence counsel confer]
10 MR. LUKIC: We'll continue, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Please proceed.
12 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. [Interpretation] My colleague Mr. Jeremy yesterday mentioned the
14 Prosecution witness when speaking of the killings at the Vrhpolje bridge.
15 147 is the page reference and 169 of our transcript. I think this is a
16 mistake. I think it should say 2147 through 2169.
17 Now, I'm going to read out something to you, something that a
18 Prosecution witnesses, Raif Begic, said about this incident and then I'm
19 going to put a question to you.
20 On transcript page in this case 2199, lines 18 through 23, I
22 [In English] "Q. And then you go on to say that you were beaten
23 by Chetniks on the bridge. What kind of insignia did they have, if you
25 "A. They had different insignia. Like I said, some were wearing
1 military uniforms, some were wearing blue uniforms, some had Chetnik
2 insignia. Some had just regular items of clothing, waist-coats, jackets,
3 so it was all mixed."
4 [Interpretation] My question, Mr. Basara, the soldiers of the
5 6th Krajina Brigade were they dressed this way? Did they wear such
7 A. No. Members of the 6th Krajina Brigade all had uniforms and they
8 all wore insignia. Later when Republika Srpska was declared, then the
9 insignia of Republika Srpska. Before that some of them had five-pointed
10 stars and others did not have any insignia. I saw soldiers and no one
11 wore Chetnik insignia, cockades or anything like that.
12 Q. We're talking about the 31st of May, 1992.
13 A. At that time, they did not have any other insignia. Someone
14 could have had the five-pointed red star if it already been sewn into the
15 cap they were wearing.
16 Q. Were there members of your brigade who had a blue uniform or
17 moved about in civilian clothes?
18 A. No, they did not have any blue uniforms or civilian clothes.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We'd also like to direct the
20 Chamber's attention to read the transcript page 2202 in this case, lines
21 17 through 23, where the witness said that, according to his opinion, on
22 that occasion, the people involved were not members of the regular army.
23 Q. You were asked about P7323.
24 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] If we can have it on the screen,
1 Q. It is a criminal report you signed against Danilusko Kajtez. Who
2 drafted such documents in your brigade, documents of this type?
3 A. Documents of this type were drafted by the security organ as well
4 as the assistance commander for morale and training.
5 Q. Do you know if Danilusko Kajtez was arrested and if he was
6 arrested by whom?
7 A. I don't know who arrested him. I only know that I signed the
8 order and the competent organs followed it up.
9 Q. Let me briefly ask you about SOS units.
10 You mentioned Njunja. What was his name, if you recall?
11 A. I only know him as Njunja. Perhaps his last name was Savovic and
12 his first name Dusan or something like that. Aka Njunja.
13 Q. If I told you his name was Dusan Saovic, does it ring a bell?
14 A. In my mind, it is Savovic; but I don't know if it is Saovic or
16 Q. Were he and the members of his unit under your command?
17 A. No, they were not under my command but when the VRS was
18 established we tried, I made an effort, to place them under brigade
19 command so that I could exercise control over their activities. However,
20 it was difficult to achieve because sometimes they accepted it and then
21 at other times they withdrew, so you never knew whether they truly
22 accepted the command of the brigade or not.
23 Q. Did they report to you?
24 A. No, nothing whatsoever. Njunja did things of his own accord.
25 JUDGE ORIE: No speaking at audible volume.
1 Please proceed. It is not for you, Mr. Lukic.
2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Mr. Basara. Thank you. I apologise for the additional time we
4 spent torturing you. Thank you again for answering our questions. This
5 would be all.
6 A. Thank you as well.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Lukic.
8 Mr. Jeremy, could you give us an indication as to how much time
9 would you need.
10 MR. JEREMY: Yes, Your Honour. I don't have any re-cross. The
11 only outstanding issue, as I see it, is the diary P7321 MFI. Given the
12 time pressure that we're experiencing with the videolink, then my
13 suggestion would be that I make a short written submission on this or, if
14 the Court prefers, I would follow up with an oral submission after the
15 videolinks this week.
16 JUDGE ORIE: We don't need the witness for that.
17 MR. JEREMY: No.
18 JUDGE ORIE: I would have one or two questions for the witness.
19 I also noted that the next witness would be available in the videolink
20 only at half past 11.00. So, therefore, I suggest we take the break and
21 that after that break I put my one or two questions to the witness, and
22 then we ... I pushed you very much. I didn't know at the time,
23 Mr. Lukic, when I said one hour we would look at it, I didn't have that
24 information yet that the next witness would be available or not.
25 MR. LUKIC: We didn't consult you. We calculated my time without
1 having the ruling from -- by the Chamber.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Let's take the break first.
3 We'll take the break. The witness is not excused yet, although
4 he will likely be excused soon after the break.
5 We now take a break and we resume at five minutes past 11.00.
6 --- Recess taken at 10.43 a.m.
7 --- On resuming at 11.06 a.m.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, I have a few questions for you.
9 Questioned by the Court:
10 JUDGE ORIE: First of all, you were questioned about a meeting
11 where it was recorded that General Talic was present and then you said,
12 Well, you don't remember that General Talic was there but you seemed to
13 remember that there was a Lieutenant-Colonel Mustafa Talic who would,
14 instead, have been attending.
15 Could you tell us in what capacity
16 Lieutenant-Colonel Mustafa Talic would have attended that meeting?
17 A. In my view, he happened to be there by chance. He came to the
18 municipal building and the meeting took place at that time. He
19 participated in the meeting, he even contributed, although I can't
20 remember exactly what he said now.
21 JUDGE ORIE: So you're telling us that someone was there by
22 chance and then he joins the meeting and contributes, and that's all
24 A. Well, Rasula and others accepted officers at times. He was in
25 uniform, and when he arrived, they simply took him as such: An officer,
1 lieutenant-colonel, who sat in the meeting. As far as I remember, he
2 also discussed some things, although I can't be more specific than that.
3 JUDGE ORIE: You don't remember what his contribution was?
4 A. No, I don't.
5 JUDGE ORIE: And the fact that it's twice mentioned in the
6 document that it was General Talic, do you have any explanation for that?
7 A. I don't. I can't explain who wrote it. As far as I recall, I
8 don't remember Talic being there.
9 JUDGE ORIE: You mean General Talic or do you mean
10 Lieutenant-Colonel Talic?
11 A. Yes, yes, general. General Talic. I had him in mind. I don't
12 remember him coming.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Do you --
14 A. Of course, he would --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Do you have any explanation as -- as the -- that
16 your statements are -- well, not very consistent in this respect over the
18 A. I don't know what kind of statements I provided about that, but I
19 don't think it was previously put to me that General Talic was present.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. We -- we have looked at the previous
22 I have another question for you about the demolition of the
23 mosques. Was there any report in writing on your people trying to
24 protect the mosques and then at night being chased away by unknown
25 persons who then demolished the mosques, apart from that one mosque which
1 was ordered to be destroyed?
2 Did you write any reports about that?
3 A. No, I did not. I did not write a single report of that kind
4 because the brigade command did not ask for any such reports.
5 Since there was no state of war, one could not force those
6 securing a facility to be killed over a mosque.
7 JUDGE ORIE: No. But if you give a task to protect mosques and
8 then they're all destroyed, isn't that an important matter which should
9 be reported, that the security situation was such that it should be known
10 by the higher-up levels?
11 A. As far as I know, such information was not requested at all by
12 the command. What was requested was the manning levels and casualties.
13 As for the buildings and how many houses were destroyed in operations, or
14 religious buildings, such information was not requested, and we did not
15 provide it.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You did not consider it of sufficient
17 relevance? Is that how I have to understand your answer?
18 A. Well, you can understand it any which way you want, but that was
19 the situation in the field.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for that.
21 Now I would like to take you back to P2414 which was shown to you
22 by Mr. Lukic.
23 Could we have it on our screens.
24 Mr. Lukic drew your attention to paragraph 6 of these conclusions
25 of the 8th of June of the Crisis Staff of Sanski Most. I'd like to draw
1 your attention to number 2. Could you please read that for yourself and
2 tell me when you are done.
3 A. I read item 2. However, I am not familiar with it --
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes --
5 A. -- and Nenad Davidovic did not inform me of this in any way.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Do you agree that this is another example,
7 apart from the ones that we saw already, that at least the Crisis Staff
8 thinks that there is co-operation between the 6th Brigade Command and the
9 Civil Defence Staff and that they should co-operate in preparations such
10 as here, the Vrhpolje-Hrustovo theatre to be cleared. Do you agree that
11 this is another example where such co-operation can mentioned?
12 A. Co-operation is mentioned, but since the municipality had all of
13 its bodies in place, under the law we worked under, which was the Law on
14 All People's Defence, the sanitization and hygiene measures in the field
15 are carried out exclusively by units of civilian protection. There was
16 no need for me to take part in it because there was no significant combat
17 activity which may have resulted in a significant number of casualties.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Had you attended the meeting of the 8th of
19 June, 1992 of the Crisis Staff.
20 A. I don't know that. I can't tell you anything about dates in
21 terms of when I attended something and when I did not.
22 JUDGE ORIE: I'm seeking the assistance of the parties to see
23 whether the -- there are any minutes or notebooks that give more -- a
24 better view on the attendance.
25 Witness, I have the following question for you. We've seen
1 repeatedly that in these documents it's described how you should or would
2 co-operate, co-ordinate, in whatever way, and your answers persistently
3 say that it was all not what really happened. Do you have any
4 explanation as why they would continue and repeatedly give instructions
5 how to co-operate with the 6th Brigade where you say it never happened?
6 I mean, isn't -- doesn't there come a moment when one should realise that
7 such co-operation was useless to even think of because it wasn't done
8 anyhow, ever?
9 A. Such co-operation to the extent referred to in the documents did
10 not exist. Why they kept repeating it and asking for it without
11 forwarding those decisions to the brigade command is something that we
12 should ask the people from the municipal organs and from the
13 Crisis Staff.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Have you ever thought that perhaps the 6th Brigade,
15 as such, was not attending any meetings but it was just you as a person,
16 though being commander of the 6th Brigade?
17 A. I don't know how many times I have said so far why. As the
18 commander I participated at the meetings of the municipal -- of the
19 Muslim municipality when there was division. I also attended the
20 sessions of the Serbian Assembly, and I wanted to know at any time what
21 the intentions of both sides were. That is why I attended.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but I'm talking about the Crisis Staff of the
23 Serbian municipality, not about assembly meetings.
24 A. I didn't say municipal assembly meetings but when they separated,
25 I also attended the meetings of the Muslim authorities. If they
1 registered me in their documents, one would also be able, perhaps, to say
2 that I was a member of their Crisis Staff.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Well, I leave it to that.
4 I have no further questions for you.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but Judge Fluegge has one question for you.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Mr. Basara, I would like to take you back to the
8 event on the Vrhpolje bridge.
9 You told us that you didn't know the perpetrators. Have you got
10 any information in the meantime who the perpetrators were?
11 A. No. I never received any information. Such information was not
12 available because it was a civil war. It was very difficult to apprehend
13 perpetrators wherever they were.
14 JUDGE FLUEGGE: Thank you. --
15 A. If we knew who the perpetrators of a particular crime were, we
16 always made sure that procedure was initiated.
17 JUDGE FLUEGGE: The last sentence of paragraph 44 of your
18 statement you say, I quote: "I found out that the perpetrators of these
19 murders were some people from Kljuc."
20 What's the basis for this information.
21 A. This information and my conclusion is based on the fact that
22 those people fled in the area -- direction of Kljuc territory. The
23 people at the check-point in Sanski Most claimed that they didn't know
24 them and that they did not hail from the territory of Sanski Most, from
25 some of the villages whose inhabitants they knew.
1 JUDGE FLUEGGE: You're saying that they fled in that direction?
2 A. They fled in that direction. They didn't stay there. It's not
3 that I could have spoken to them. When they heard Colonel Basara, they
4 simply fled in the direction of Kljuc. There are a few houses there, as
5 far as I can remember, and nobody could have stopped them although these
6 other people were shouting that they should stop, but they simply fled.
7 JUDGE FLUEGGE: And you are, indeed, saying in this -- in your
8 statement that there were some people from Kljuc, and you concluded that
9 only from the information that they fled in that direction; is that
10 correct? No other sources.
11 A. Statements of the men who were there at the check-point who are
12 from Sanski Most.
13 JUDGE FLUEGGE: I have no further questions. Thank you.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Jeremy.
15 MR. JEREMY: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 I've just I'd like to return to the -- this meeting on the 20th
17 of April. Could we take a look at P3294; and that's Mr. Rasula's diary.
18 If we could go to page 25 in the English and page 21 in the B/C/S,
20 Further cross-examination by Mr. Jeremy:
21 Q. Now, Colonel Basara, I'd like to focus your attention on the
22 right side of the page in the B/C/S at the bottom of that page, and these
23 are the minutes of that meeting on the 20th of April, 1992.
24 Now, you've -- you've just said that that you didn't -- that
25 contrary to your previous testimony in Stanisic and Zupljanin case you
1 said that you thought a Lieutenant-Colonel Mustafa Talic was present at
2 this meeting. He happened to be wandering past the municipal assembly
3 and he came in and attended this meeting.
4 Now, we see here that comments are attributed to a General Talic
5 and they are concluding remarks. We see this reference to reach
6 agreement but without undue delay. The military police from Prijedor
7 shall remain and if need be from Banja Luka do not recognise paramilitary
8 formations and a reference to barricades being put up.
9 Can you explain why if Lieutenant-Colonel Mustafa Talic just
10 happened to be wandering past and came into this meeting he would be
11 given the floor to provide the concluding remarks for this meeting of the
12 leading ethnicities -- ethnic representatives in Sanski Most?
13 A. I think that you misunderstood me. I was claiming that I did not
14 remember, that I did not remember, what this lieutenant-colonel said. I
15 don't remember the date when this meeting was held. So I can just claim
16 that I don't remember that, that meeting. Maybe it did take place, but I
17 don't remember it. I don't remember how it went, that meeting, I don't
18 remember the conclusions ...
19 Q. All right. Let's leave it there. Thank you, Colonel.
20 JUDGE ORIE: I have one additional question in this respect.
21 You nevertheless were able to tell me how it happened that
22 Lieutenant-Colonel Mustafa Talic, how he attended that meeting, and now
23 you are telling us that you don't have any recollection about the
24 meeting. By the way, which, you, at some time in the past did as well.
25 Could you explain why you could give me those details and though
1 not having any recollection about the meeting.
2 A. Well, thinking about that, trying to remember whether
3 General Talic was there or not, I remembered that several times this
4 Lieutenant-Colonel Talic, Mustafa Talic - I'm not sure that that's his
5 first name, though - and he talked to me several times and he attended
6 certain meetings at the municipality. However, I don't remember which
7 ones so that I could tell you specifically on such and such a date,
8 et cetera. So this is just a superficial memory. I am not asserting
10 JUDGE ORIE: Apart from General Talic was not present, isn't it?
11 A. No, I'm saying I'm not asserting that because I don't know
12 because I don't remember.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for those answers.
14 Mr. Lukic.
15 MR. LUKIC: Yes. While we are on this page --
16 Further Re-examination by Mr. Lukic:
17 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Basara, let me just ask you this:
18 Colonel Hasotic is mentioned here above General Talic. Do you know who
19 Colonel Hasotic is, is he from Sanski Most?
20 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ... this does not
21 arise from my question. It was mainly it was Talic, General, or Talic
22 Lieutenant-Colonel, that was the issue raised, and, therefore, we are not
23 going to revisit the whole of the document also in respects not raised
25 MR. LUKIC: Only, Your Honour, only Mr. Basara said that these
1 people from Crisis Staff would accept officers who were not from
2 Sanski Most if they visit.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. He wasn't -- I think he wasn't asked that. He
4 was only asked about Talic. But put that question. We'll hear the
5 answer, and then conclude.
6 MR. LUKIC: I think that he --
7 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Basara, do you know what the ethnicity is of
8 Colonel Hasotic and where he came from?
9 A. Colonel Hasotic is a Muslim. That I know. And I think that he
10 came from Banja Luka. Maybe ...
11 Q. Just what you know. Thank you. That's all that we had. Thank
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] And thank you to the Court for having
14 allowed these questions.
15 JUDGE FLUEGGE: In the English version, it's Colonel Hasagic.
16 The handwriting in B/C/S.
17 MR. LUKIC: Should be Hasotic, I think.
18 JUDGE FLUEGGE: It's not clear the handwriting in B/C/S.
19 MR. LUKIC: Yeah.
20 JUDGE ORIE: There may be some confusion there.
21 Witness, I'd like to thank you very much for coming to the place
22 of the videolink. I'd like to thank you for having answered the
23 questions that were put to you, questions put to you by the parties,
24 questions put to you by the Bench. I wish you a safe return home again.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
1 [The witness withdrew]
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar at the other side of the videolink,
3 could the next witness be escorted in the videolink room.
4 THE REGISTRAR: [Via videolink] Yes, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, will it be you who will examine the
6 next witness?
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE ORIE: The next witness you call is ...
9 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Witness Grujo Boric.
10 [The witness entered court]
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Good morning, Mr. Boric. Before you give
13 evidence --
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good day.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Before you give evidence, the Rules require that you
16 make a solemn declaration, the text of which is now handed out to you.
17 May I invite you to make that solemn declaration.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
19 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
20 WITNESS: GRUJO BORIC
21 [Witness answered through interpreter]
22 [Witness testified via videolink]
23 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Boric. Please be seated.
24 Mr. Boric, you'll first be examined by Mr. Stojanovic.
25 Mr. Stojanovic is counsel for Mr. Mladic. But before we continue, I took
1 it from your answer that you're able to see us and to hear us in a
2 language you understand. Is that true?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's true.
4 JUDGE ORIE: You may proceed, Mr. Stojanovic.
5 Mr. Traldi.
6 MR. TRALDI: I'm very sorry, Your Honour, I'd expected to have a
7 moment before the witness was brought in, but just in view of the
8 questions that are likely to be asked and the witness's position, we'd
9 ask that he be informed of his rights under Rule 90(E).
10 JUDGE ORIE: I'll do so, Mr. Stojanovic, unless you think that
11 your questions are not such that it makes sense at all. And it is
12 because it is viva voce evidence that we do not know which questions you
13 will put to the witness. If you ask him about the weather there may be
14 no need to do it but if there are any questions which expose the witness
15 to any risk, then --
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Certainly, Your Honour. So I
17 have no problem with you addressing him on that, the rule, that is.
18 JUDGE ORIE: I'm asking this, Mr. Traldi, because it's usually
19 the calling party who knows what questions will you put and that's --
20 they consider it. But in view of the answer given by Mr. Stojanovic,
21 I'll put the following to the witness.
22 Mr. Boric, Rule 90(E) of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence have
23 the following text and I'll read it slowly to you:
24 "A witness may object to making any statement which might tend to
25 incriminate the witness. The Chamber may, however, compel the witness to
1 answer the question. Testimony compelled in this way shall not be used
2 as evidence in subsequent prosecution against the witness for any offence
3 other than false testimony."
4 Mr. Boric, if, therefore, you have concerns that a truthful
5 answer to any of the questions might incriminate yourself or might tend
6 to incriminate yourself, don't hesitate to address me and ask to be
7 relieved from answering that question.
8 Is that clear?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Clear.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, you may proceed.
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.
12 Examination by Mr. Stojanovic:
13 Q. [Interpretation] Good day, Mr. Boric. Welcome.
14 A. Good day. Thank you.
15 Q. According to the procedure existing here, could you please tell
16 us your first and last names.
17 A. Grujo Boric. Father's name Milko [phoen]. Mother's name
18 Grozda [phoen].
19 Q. Could you tell the Trial Chamber your date and place of birth.
20 A. The 12th of July, 1938, village of Kandici, municipality of
22 Q. Tell us, where do you live today, General, sir?
23 A. I live in Novi Sad, Bulevar Oslobodjenje number 67.
24 Q. Could you please tell the Trial Chamber about your education and
25 your career until you retired.
1 A. I completed the secondary military school in 1956. The Military
2 Academy in 1992. The higher Military Academy and the War School in
3 Belgrade in 1971 -- 1981.
4 Q. Once again, please, could you repeat the year when you completed
5 the Military Academy?
6 A. The Military Academy? I graduated from the Military Academy in
8 Q. Thank you. Tell the Trial Chamber which duties you held in 1990
9 and 1991 at the time when the war broke out in the SFRY.
10 A. I was chief of the 6th Lika Division in Karlovac; commander of
11 the 7th Banja Division in Petrinja; Chief of Staff of defence of Zagreb;
12 and assistant for logistics of the 10th Corps in Zagreb.
13 Q. What were the tasks of the then-JNA in Croatia, following the
14 multi-party elections?
15 A. There was much tension because the Croatians were looking to
16 secede, to become independent. This caused clashes between Croats and
17 Serbs and in those situations, we served as a buffer. When the clash at
18 Plitvice took place, I personally participated in creating this buffer
19 zone with my unit. Later on, when the conflict moved to Banja in Glina,
20 I was present there as well.
21 Q. Until when did you remain in the territory of the Republic of
22 Croatia as a JNA officer?
23 A. Until May 1992.
24 Q. Please tell the Court where was your unit dislocated at the time,
25 including yourself?
1 A. I was in Glina until part of the command and some units of the
2 10th Corps left Zagreb. After that, I arrived in Bihac. There, I joined
3 the command of the 10th Corps in Bihac. It was in late 1991.
4 Q. What kind of situation did you encounter in Bosnia and
5 Herzegovina, specifically in the area of Bihac?
6 A. There was a clash between Serbs and Croats in Bihac. 90 per cent
7 of Serbs left Bihac. Even barracks were attacked and a guard of ours was
8 killed. Close to Bihac, there was an airport which, at the time, was
9 still under JNA control.
10 Q. In that period, between December 1991 and the summer --
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Spring and summer of 1992.
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. What were the specific tasks that you and your unit of the JNA
14 had which you received from your superior command?
15 A. When the corps command arrived in Bihac, the 10th Corps was
16 joined by the units at Samarica, Drinska Gora, and Plitvice. These were
17 the units which had already been sent to the front line, as well as some
18 territorial units which happened to be in the territory of Bihac. The
19 units which had previously been assigned to the front lines had their
20 task to maintain the lines there. On the other hand, wherever there were
21 incidents and clashes, we tried to reduce tensions and to separate Muslim
22 and Croat forces.
23 Q. As a superior officer, did you have any personal knowledge about
24 the illegal arming of the population at the time?
25 A. While we were still in Zagreb, there was the Spegelj affair, who
1 commanded the Croatian TO. He was importing weapons from Hungary,
2 illegally, distributing those weapons to the Croatian population.
3 However his trial was prevented from taking place by Croatian authorities
4 and the population in Zagreb. Neither he nor his group were ever
5 convicted. In any case, people were being armed everywhere, including
6 Muslims and Serbs in that period.
7 Q. In the spring of 1992, did JNA units have specific problems with
8 the population of Bihac and their stay in the military facilities in the
9 area of Bihac?
10 A. We were frequently attacked. Members of the Green Berets, their
11 groups, organised or set up specific points along different routes,
12 stopping columns of vehicles moving towards Petrovac and further afield.
13 For the most part, Serbs left the territory of Bihac en masse.
14 I can say that at the time 15 officers arrived in Bihac. They
15 were officers and non-commissioned officers of Muslim ethnicity. They
16 were transferred there which seemed odd in view of the fact that the
17 situation was difficult and that they were not to remain in the unit. I
18 spoke with all of them and asked them if they were prepared to fight,
19 should we be attacked by the population of Bihac municipality, given that
20 some of them had their families in the town. 90 per cent of them
21 answered negatively. We paid them out and let them join their families
22 in the town. Only one warrant officer remained, by the name of
23 Peskir [phoen], I think, and a second lieutenant, they were both of
24 Muslim ethnicity. The latter remained in the police and later he, too,
25 joined its ranks and joined his family in Bihac.
1 Q. Until what time did the corps remain in Bihac and the barracks
3 A. Around the 19th of May, 1992, an order was issued that the
4 officers and soldiers born in Montenegro, Macedonia and Serbia were to
5 leave the territory of Bosnia for Serbia. Those officers hailing from
6 Bosnia, if they wished so, were free to stay or to leave.
7 Q. What was your decision, given your place of birth?
8 A. I received an order on my appointment as the Chief of Staff of
9 the 10th Corps which was already in the process of disintegration as the
10 officers from Serbia and Montenegro were already leaving. Some 250
11 soldiers hailing from Bosnia remained, together with some 20 officers. I
12 assembled them all, explained the situation, and they all accepted to
13 stay with me and with the officers to fight alongside our own people in
14 that area.
15 Q. Could you stay physically in the Bihac town at that time?
16 A. We received an order to leave Bihac. At the time, the airport
17 had been destroyed; one part of it. All the preparations had been made
18 to leave Bihac. The president of the municipality made arrangements
19 about that with me in person. Around the 20th or 22nd May 1992, we left
20 the whole command and all materiel that had been stored in the depots in
21 Bihac, moved to the territory of Petrovac municipality, to Krnjeusa
22 village and the commands accommodated itself at a school there.
23 Q. Did you have any conflicts with paramilitary formations which you
24 called the Green Berets during this period?
25 A. We departed from Bihac in an organised manner. The president of
1 the municipality was in the car with me, and when we left, we said
2 farewells at the border of Bihac municipality and we left. We had no
3 problems at all. But the second lieutenant of Muslim ethnicity was the
4 commander of a military police unit. He took a combat vehicle. He let
5 the soldiers leave and then he drove off the vehicle to Bihac. I later
6 heard that he was killed.
7 I got in touch with the president of the municipality as we were
8 in telephone communication. We had radio sets, that is to say. I asked
9 him to have the vehicle returned but he did not manage to achieve that.
10 I would tell you a few words about the president of the
11 municipality of Bihac. His first name was Serbian. As he was a Muslim
12 when I asked him how come his first name was Serbian, he said that his
13 father had served the army in the JNA in Sumadija. He had a good friend
14 there and they agreed that if they would have sons, that they would give
15 them their respective names. That was why the president of the
16 municipality was not much loved by the Muslims. I later heard that he
17 was killed too.
18 Q. Would you tell us when it was that you received the information
19 about the establishment of the Army of Republika Srpska, if you received
20 that information, that is?
21 A. I told you that the command left for the general sector of
22 Petrovac to Krnjeusa village. I met General Mladic in Drvar at his
23 request. He came there together with a colleague, General Savo
24 Kovacevic, and I was told that a corps would be formed and that we would
25 receive an order and that I would most probably be appointed commander of
1 this corps. That was on the 25th of May, 1992.
2 Q. Did you receive such an order on your appointment as corps
3 commander at any point?
4 A. I received a decree from President Karadzic rather than an order.
5 That was around the month of July 1992. In early July; I think it may
6 have been the 7th or the 8th of July. I was appointed commander of the
7 2nd Krajina Corps. Colonel Mico Vlaisavljevic was appointed as Chief of
8 Staff. Both of us were colonels at the time.
9 Q. Would you please describe to the Chamber the zone of
10 responsibility of the 2nd Krajina Corps at the moment when you took over
11 the command of this corps.
12 A. The zone was vast. The front was 200-odd kilometres, all the way
13 from Krupa Na Uni to Petrovac, Bihac, Drvar, Grahovo, Glamoc, Kupres. In
14 depth Sipovo, Kljuc and Mrkonjic Grad.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, is there any dispute about the zone
16 of responsibility of the 2nd Krajina Corps? That's one.
17 Have you tried to see whether there is -- and if there's a
18 difference, does that affect in any specific way other disputes between
19 the parties.
20 MR. TRALDI: I'll actually ask that the witness remove headphones
21 for a moment.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, could you please take off your headphones.
23 But, witness, could you -- no, I think if he has no headphones he
24 wouldn't hear anything. It's videolink.
25 MR. TRALDI: Sorry.
1 JUDGE ORIE: But he'll take off his headphones anyhow.
2 Yes, please.
3 MR. TRALDI: Yes, actually based on the witness's answer and the
4 specific way Mr. Stojanovic formulated the question, there is a dispute
5 about the accuracy of the answer the witness gave. There -- one of the
6 municipalities according to evidence the Chamber has received that he
7 mentioned wasn't part of the zone of responsibility at the moment when he
8 took over the commands of the corps.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. It's not because I interrupted him that he had
10 not finished his list yet? Is that a possibility.
11 MR. TRALDI: No, though it's possible that he would have
12 clarified his mention of one of those municipalities.
13 JUDGE ORIE: So, it's one of those he mentioned in the
14 Prosecution's view is not within the zone of responsibility.
15 MR. TRALDI: And it's because of the specific way the question
16 was formulated, "At the moment when you took over the command of this
17 corps ..."
18 So there's evidence before the Chamber and I don't have a P
19 number at my fingertips but that the -- the zone changed a couple of
20 weeks later and one of the municipalities he mentioned was added.
21 So there is a dispute and I'm just briefly outlining what it is.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Is that, Mr. Stojanovic, what you were trying to
23 specify with the witness or ... do you know which municipality Mr. Traldi
24 is hinting at?
25 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think I do, and I think it's
1 one of the key questions in view of the future questions which I think my
2 learned friend and I will both be asking. So one of my following
3 questions will deal with my attempt to try and resolve this issue.
4 JUDGE ORIE: The reason why I intervened was that since we
5 previously heard from the witness why one of his kids was given a certain
6 name, et cetera, which we -- I had difficulties in finding the probative
7 value, but I apparently intervened at exactly the wrong moment where
8 there was something relevant to be discussed.
9 Please proceed.
10 And could the witness be -- put his earphones on again.
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. So, Mr. Witness, we had an administrative issue to deal with and
13 now I will follow with the same line of questioning.
14 You have told us what your corps's zone of responsibility was at
15 the moment when you took over the command, and you also mentioned, "and
16 in depth," and then you listed some municipalities.
17 Can you please explain do the Chamber what this express "in
18 depth" means, in military terms?
19 A. The front was a line I told you how it went: Krupa, Petrovac,
20 Bihac, Grahovo, Kupres. And the depth of territory, reached to Sipovo
21 and the front part of Kljuc because that's where the roads leading to
22 Banja Luka were. And Mrkonjic Grad too. Their units were not in the
23 composition of the 2nd Corps; those from Kljuc and Mrkonjic Grad. The
24 units were not, at the time, part of the composition of the 2nd Krajina
1 Q. Thank you. And now this question: Did at any point the units
2 from the Kljuc and Mrkonjic Grad municipalities join the 2nd Krajina
3 Corps and were integrated there it?
4 A. The 17th Light Infantry Brigade was formed from units from Kljuc.
5 It became part of the 7th. It became a part of the composition of the
6 corps in July 1992 by an order of the Main Staff of the Army of
7 Republika Srpska.
8 Q. Could you please tell the Chamber up until July 1992, do you have
9 any knowledge to which unit this unit from Kljuc belonged? It was a part
10 of what composition?
11 A. I suppose that they had Territorial Defence units there. Now,
12 what were they a part of, I couldn't know that for sure but they
13 certainly were not in the corps.
14 Q. Thank you. You also mentioned a unit from the Mrkonjic Grad
15 municipality sector. Can you please tell the Chamber whether they also
16 were integrated with the 2nd Krajina Corps at any point?
17 A. There was a battalion from Mrkonjic Grad which was a part of the
18 composition of the brigade which conducted defence in Kupres. The
19 soldiers from this battalion were part of the composition of the
20 7th Light Brigade which was in charge of defence in Kupres territory.
21 Q. Thank you. Could you now please tell the Chamber, taking into
22 account the previous answer, what were the brigades that comprised the
23 2nd Krajina Corps at that time, that is to say, in June/July 1992 and
25 A. The 2nd Krajina Corps comprised the following units: Some of the
1 units of the 10th Corps which had left Croatia; some of the Territorial
2 Defence units from all these municipalities which I listed, namely, a
3 brigade from Krupa Na Uni, a brigade from Petrovac, a brigade from Bihac,
4 a brigade from Drvar, a brigade from Grahovo, a brigade from Glamoc, and
5 a brigade from Kupres, where a brigade from Mrkonjic Grad also joined and
6 from Sipovo. I also had a brigade which used to be the JNA with all
7 equipment and their materiel from Sibenik. They were deployed in Drvar.
8 There was also one engineer regiment which was brought by Colonel Mica
9 Vlaisavljevic and which was accommodated in the Kljuc municipality
10 sector. I also had three artillery battalions. One was anti-aircraft
11 and two were just land artillery --
12 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please be asked to repeat the
13 end of his answer.
14 JUDGE ORIE: Could the witness please repeat the last part of his
16 Witness, you told us that one of the artillery battalions was
17 anti-aircraft, that two were just land artillery. What did you then say
18 after that?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said land artillery, one was
20 anti-armour and one was an artillery battalion or, rather, regiment.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Stojanovic.
22 Perhaps I should not ask you to proceed because it's time for a
24 Witness, we'll take break of 20 minutes. We'd like to see you
25 back after the break. We resume at 12.30.
1 --- Recess taken at 12.07 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 12.32 p.m.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Before we continue, I'd just like to verify whether
4 the videolink is still functioning well.
5 THE REGISTRAR: [Via videolink] Yes, Your Honour, it is. We can
6 see and hear you clearly.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. And the same is true for this side of
8 the videolink.
9 Mr. Stojanovic, you may proceed.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Mr. Boric, the next question that I'd like to put to you is the
12 following. You mentioned your command post in the territory of the
13 municipality of Petrovac. And now this is what I'd like to ask you: All
14 the time while you were commander of the 2nd Krajina Corps, was the
15 command post in the same area, in the same territory?
16 A. Immediately as soon as the corps was formed, the command post was
17 in Drvar. It was in Drvar throughout or, rather, on that pass between
18 Drvar and Petrovac. Now what was the name? Right this moment, I cannot
20 Q. At one point in time, because it was necessary due to the combat
21 operations going on, did you set up a forward command post as well?
22 A. No. No, just when necessary, someone from the corps command
23 would go there when there was combat, say, in Krupa or Bihac, then
24 somebody would go from the command, the corps command, and there was a
25 link. Usually it was commander or the Chief of Staff. And there was a
1 link. There was communication with the Drvar command.
2 Q. Thank you. Could you please tell the Court what the ethnic
3 structure of the population was in the municipalities that were in the
4 area of responsibility of the 2nd Krajina Corps?
5 A. When the 2nd Krajina Corps was established, most of the
6 population of Muslim ethnicity had already moved out. All municipalities
7 in the area had about 107.000 inhabitants and among them there were
8 28.000 military conscripts. For the most part, they were all of Serb
9 ethnicity. Most of the Muslims stayed near Grahovo and to the left
10 towards Kupres. Later on, they left the area of those municipalities.
11 Q. I'm asking you precisely because of the following. Namely, was
12 there a migration of the population during these first years of war?
13 A. Well, I've already said. When the corps was established, 90
14 per cent had split up. Serbs were in the Serb territory, Muslims in the
15 Muslim territory, or a separation line had already been established.
16 During combat operations, the 10 per cent later left. It was made
17 possible for them to go to their territory.
18 Q. Please tell the Trial Chamber how the process evolved, how the
19 minority population would leave and how the Serb population would arrive
20 in the area of the corps?
21 A. The army did not deal with that question. That was handled by
22 the municipal authorities in agreement with other municipalities where
23 they went. So we had nothing to do with that, no problems, we did not
24 take part in it at all.
25 Q. Thank you. Was it necessary; and, if so, were you personally
1 aware, as corps commander, that at some point war operations had to be
2 stopped and the front line would have to be opened in order to have an
3 exchange of population?
4 A. I don't think we had such situations.
5 Q. When you say that municipal structures dealt with this matter,
6 this is what I'd like to ask you: Do you know whether, in the
7 municipalities that were in the area of the 2nd Krajina Corps after you
8 arrived, there were Crisis Staffs that functioned in the territory of
9 these municipalities?
10 A. I'm not aware of that. However, I established contact with all
11 the presidents of municipalities, and I had excellent co-operation with
12 all of them except for the president of the municipality in Drvar,
13 Mr. Drago Knezevic. I didn't really have problems with him either. When
14 we were together, then we would agree on something. However, once we'd
15 part, he did whatever he wanted to do, which did not correspond to what
16 had been agreed upon. I don't know who was on the Crisis Staff, but we
17 did have contact with the president of the municipality and the chief of
18 police in these municipalities.
19 Q. While you were corps commander, did it ever happen that your,
20 under quotation mark, brigade commanders get direct orders from the
21 Crisis Staffs from the areas of the municipalities that these brigade
22 commanders came from?
23 A. First of all, I'm saying I don't know that there was a Crisis
24 Staff in any one of the municipalities.
25 As for brigade commanders, they could receive orders only from me
1 as commander. There was no way that they could receive orders from any
2 other structure --
3 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We didn't hear the end of
4 the sentence. Could other microphones please be switched off. Thank
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, the last part of the answer was not
7 captured by the interpreters.
8 You said, Witness, "There was no way that they could receive
9 orders from any other structure," and what did you say then?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Except from the commander of the
11 corps, or the command of the corps.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, would you also carefully listen
13 to what the answers of the witness. If the witness says, I was not aware
14 there were any Crisis Staffs, then to ask if anyone received orders from
15 a Crisis Staff is, of course, not a very useful question after that
17 Please proceed.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
19 Q. In the corps command, did you have any officers who were not of
20 Serb ethnicity?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Who was head of the command administration while you were corps
24 A. A second lieutenant who was a Muslim. Exactly. I lost sight of
1 Q. Thank you.
2 A. And throughout the war, he was there, and he stayed in the Army
3 of Republika Srpska. He got married in Drvar, and now he lives in
4 Banja Luka. He has two children.
5 Q. Would you tell me in the area of responsibility of the
6 2nd Krajina Corps, where was the intensity of combat during those two
7 years or less than three years? Where was it the greatest and where was
8 it the most intensive?
9 A. The heaviest fighting took place on the line between Bihac and
10 Petrovac. The well-known Alibegovica Kosa. There is one case when
11 General Mladic came to tour the unit. That unit from that position,
12 Alibegovica Kosa, had fled. He was with General Tolimir, he was visiting
13 and usually when he would visit he would not go to the command. The
14 commander would accompany him going to the front line, and he would visit
15 units. And then he took about 20 soldiers. Tolimir took about 20 and he
16 gave me 20. And he said, Let's go ahead. It was winter time. General
17 Tolimir was sick. He came. He had had an apoplexy and I asked General
18 Mladic why, and I asked him not to take him along. However Tolimir
19 didn't accept that. He didn't want to stay behind. He wanted --
20 Q. General, I'm going to interrupt you now and ask you the
21 following. Can you remember what that period was when did this happen?
22 When did General Mladic come to visit the front line of the positions of
23 your command?
24 A. That was the winter of 1993.
25 Q. And --
1 A. Now it was October or November.
2 Q. Another question: How often did General Mladic visit your corps?
3 A. Well, let's say, that he'd come at least twice a month for a few
4 days, but during that time, he would manage to tour the entire front line
5 of my corps, and I went together with him.
6 Q. I apologise.
7 A. He would know what the situation was like on the front line of
8 the 2nd Krajina Corps without me having to report to him.
9 Q. At moments when you were carrying out the duties of corps
10 commander, did the area of Bihac receive the status of a protected area?
11 A. There was talk; but, as far as I know, it did not get that
12 status. When we met, the commander of the 5th Corps and I, in the
13 presence of a French officer, we agreed that they should not fire from
14 the barracks in the centre of Bihac, the 27th of July Barracks, that they
15 should not open fire on us and there would be no combat. However, they
16 never honoured that.
17 Q. I interrupted you for a moment, and I would like to ask you to
18 tell us how this operation ended, returning the positions at Alibegovica
19 Kosa where General Mladic and General Tolimir took part together with
21 A. General Mladic with his group, he was the first one to set out,
22 and then it was Tolimir and his men, and then I and my men. When we
23 reached the line where our soldiers were supposed to be, there was no one
24 there. There were no Muslims. There were no soldiers of ours. And when
25 we entered the trenches on that line, a man started shooting at us from
1 some bushes there. At that moment Mladic who was to my left, all of a
2 sudden he fell, and I also lay down, and Tolimir did too. It wasn't even
3 a minute later that General Mladic said to me, Boke - that's what he
4 called me - Boke, are you still alive? And I said, Boss, if you're alive
5 then I'm still alive too. So instinctively, he fell to the ground and I
6 thought that he had been hit. Later on, we talked and he said -- Or,
7 rather, I said to General Mladic that it's not proper for him as the
8 commander of the army to lead a group of soldiers into a breakthrough.
9 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We didn't hear the end.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Thank you. We are going to ask you now to help us with an
12 another topic and that is the system of information within your corps.
13 Did you have an organised system of communication with all your
14 subordinate units?
15 A. We did have organised communications on a daily basis with all
17 Q. What was the duty of the subordinate units? How were they
18 supposed to report about the situation in the area of responsibility of
19 the brigades? What kind of information were they supposed to send to the
20 corps command?
21 A. Every day the brigades submitted reports, situation reports, at
22 1700 hours. By 1800 hours, the reports were supposed to have reach the
23 corps command, and then we had to send the report to the Main Staff by
24 1900 hours. That's way it was. Each and every day. When situations
25 were more difficult, then the corps command was informed immediately --
1 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We didn't hear the end.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. These reports that the corps command sent --
4 JUDGE ORIE: The interpreters did not hear the end of the answer.
5 Witness, it is recorded that you said: "Then the corps command
6 was informed immediately ..."
7 And what did you say after that?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] On the basis of these reports that
9 we received from the brigades, then the corps command would compile a
10 report for the corps and we would send that to the Main Staff. However,
11 if there was any kind of urgent situation going on, the corps command was
12 informed immediately, and we informed the army commander.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Stojanovic.
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Did those reports reflect complete and accurate information about
16 the situation in the field within the area of responsibility of the
17 2nd Krajina Corps?
18 A. Those reports were accurate, and we had no reason to hide
19 anything in terms of what was going on in the corps area, be it soldiers
20 who were killed or prisoners taken.
21 Q. While you were the corps commander, did you encounter any
22 situations in which, as a result of combat activity, you had prisoners?
23 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Prisoners of war.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There were such cases but there
25 were not many of them. The brigades had the duty to disarm such
1 fighters, question them, take their details and in agreement with the
2 corps security officer to bring them where they were placed in detention
3 and screened. Then they were sent to Banja Luka.
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Please tell the Court where the prison was which housed POWs
6 before their departure for Banja Luka?
7 A. It was in Drvar, in a place called Kamenica. It was also a
8 prison for my own soldiers who were being prosecuted or disciplined in
9 their brigades for abandonment of positions or some other problems they
10 may have caused.
11 Q. Was there any unlawful treatment of the POWs that you were
12 familiar with?
13 A. I don't know of a single case of unlawful treatment with such
14 people. I don't know whether there were any instances though. It was
15 under the competence of the security organ. He never reported to me that
16 there was anything unlawful going on.
17 Q. While you were at the position of the corps commander, did you
18 ever receive information about members of the corps participating in the
19 persecution of non-Serbs in the area of responsibility of the 2nd Krajina
21 A. I did not receive any such reports, and there were not such
22 situations. Had there been such situations, I would definitely have
23 known and have taken measures.
24 Q. General, until what time did you remain at the position of the
25 2nd Krajina Corps commander?
1 A. I remained in that position until December 1994 when Kupres fell.
2 I personally went to the front line and given the fact that we were
3 attacked simultaneously by the Muslim and Croatian forces, I issued an
4 order that we withdraw to a reserve defence line towards Sipovo.
5 As in sports, when a team is underperforming, the trainer is
6 replaced. Given the fact that Kupres fell, the government decided on my
7 dismissal. However, as far as I could see, the military leadership was
8 against it. In any case, the order was implemented, and I left to the
9 training centre in Banja Luka as commander. It was sometime before the
10 New Years of 1995. That is to say, end of 1994, beginning of 1995.
11 Q. Where was this centre of military schools located that you took
12 command of?
13 A. It was in the centre of Banja Luka, in a barracks, which used to
14 be the centre of armoured units in peacetime. In the Mladen Stojanovic
16 Q. Thank you. Until what time did you remain with the VRS?
17 A. I stayed in the VRS -- I have to say that I was retired thrice.
18 But regulation was not applied in entirety.
19 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We have having problems
20 with the tone.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Let's -- let's -- one second, please.
22 It often happens that the sound becomes better very soon. I
23 received a message from one of the booths, the English booth, that the
24 sound was not of good quality. When resuming now, could the booth inform
25 the Chamber whether the sound is better now.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Certainly, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, and let's see whether it works.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The order of the Supreme Commander
4 was that General Gvero, General Djukic, General Tolimir and General Boric
5 be retired. There was a rift between the government and the Main Staff
6 which took place around that time when General Mladic's removal was
7 requested from his position of commander of the Main Staff.
8 All the generals, commanders, met in Banja Luka in the school
9 centre which I commanded. We were all against the decision to replace
10 the commander of the Main Staff in such difficult times, and we all
11 signed a document to the effect that we disagreed with it. Because of
12 the fact that it took place at the school centre, those in power believed
13 that I was the principal organiser. I was actually honoured to be placed
14 on the same list with some other extraordinary generals.
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Bearing in mind your previous answers, can you tell us until what
17 time did you remain in the VRS?
18 A. Sometime in 1996 or in 1997. Later on, General Manojlo
19 Milovanovic was appointed minister of defence of the Army of
20 Republika Srpska, and he invited me to act as his deputy. At the time, I
21 was in Novi Sad. I went to talk to him, following which I accepted the
22 position of deputy minister of defence where I stayed until 2003, when
23 the new government was put in place in Republika Srpska. I was replaced
24 at that time, and then I left Banja Luka for Novi Sad.
25 Q. Thank you. I would briefly discuss a topic --
1 JUDGE ORIE: [Previous translation continues] ...
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Apologies.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Traldi is on his feet.
4 MR. TRALDI: I apologise for the interruption.
5 If we could get a date reference the incident that the witness
6 described in the previous answer. The meeting.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Will you follow that suggestion, Mr. Stojanovic, and
8 ask for the date of that meeting. That's the --
9 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Hopefully, I
10 understood properly which incident this involves.
11 Q. Mr. Boric, please tell the Court and for the sake of the
12 transcript if you can remember the time or the period when this meeting
13 was held in the military school's centre that you commanded.
14 A. I can't tell you the exact date, but I think it was in 1995.
15 Q. Could you at least tell us what season it was when it happened?
16 A. I suppose it was in mid-year.
17 Q. Thank you, Mr. Boric.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Stojanovic, would it help to ask the witness in
19 1995 whether it was before Operation Storm or after Operation Storm,
20 which at least already gives some further indication.
21 Witness, could you tell us whether that meeting happened before
22 or after Operation Storm?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] After the operation.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Which places it then in at least later than
25 the first days of August 1995. Is that your testimony?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That is possible. There are
2 minutes --
3 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. --
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- that could be easily checked.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Stojanovic.
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
7 Q. Mr. Boric, I would like to change tack now and discuss the topic
8 of your relationship or acquaintance with General Mladic.
9 Please tell the Court when you met General Mladic for the first
11 A. I met General Mladic for the first time in 1991; April, I
12 believe. It was in the municipality of Petrovac. I think at the time he
13 was a colonel, not a general. He was on his way back from Sarajevo where
14 he was on official visit. Mr. Novakovic, the municipal president, told
15 me that Colonel Mladic would drop by in the municipal -- in the
16 municipality and that it might be a good idea to meet him. At the time I
17 was still in Bihac.
18 Indeed, Colonel Mladic arrived. He was received by the municipal
19 president but also many people assembled. The municipal president
20 brought him into a meeting room where there were many people, some seated
21 and others standing, and Mladic gave a speech. He was supported and his
22 remarks applauded. I greeted him. I told him what position I was at and
23 who I was. After that, he went to Knin.
24 The second --
25 Q. I apologise. Let me digress a bit and then we'll go back to the
2 Was that April 1991 or 1992, if you can recall?
3 A. It was definitely 1991, in April.
4 Q. Thank you. You started discussing the second encounter. When
5 did that take place?
6 A. We met for the second time on the 25th of May, 1992 in Drvar. He
7 and General Savo Kovacevic arrived together and briefed me on a situation
8 in the area, telling me that a corps was to be formed and that in all
9 likelihood I would be its commander.
10 Q. General, sir, did you have occasion to participate at any
11 seminars, gatherings of the commanders of units from across
12 Republika Srpska concerning war events at which General Mladic
14 A. We had corps commanders' briefings every month. In addition to
15 General Mladic and his associates, Mr. Karadzic was also in attendance,
16 as well as the Assembly Speaker, as well as the entire government of
17 Republika Srpska. There we always explained the situation in our
18 respective areas and put forth the demands and the requests on behalf of
19 the units.
20 Q. Did you at any point in time during your encounters with
21 General Mladic ever receive an unlawful order, oral or written, from him?
22 A. Never did I receive any order that was unlawful from Mladic.
24 Q. Thank you. I will conclude with a very direct question that has
25 to do with two incidents in the indictment.
1 Do you personally have any knowledge about the events in the area
2 of Kljuc municipality that took place in late May and early June in 1992
3 in the villages of Biljani and Velagici?
4 A. As far as I know, when the cadets and soldiers born in Serbia
5 were travelling from Knin to Belgrade, there was about a dozen buses, a
6 group of Green Berets somewhere in the territory of Kljuc stopped the
7 column and opened fire. I think six cadets or fighters were killed and
8 more were wounded. Later I heard that there was some combat activity as
9 retaliation, but I don't know any details about it. It was not within my
10 area of responsibility at the time, and the 17th Brigade from Kljuc was
11 not in existence. It was established only in July and was made part of
12 the 2nd Krajina Corps as the last unit.
13 Q. General, sir, what is of interest to us non-military people is
14 this: Who was specifically tasked with keeping law and order in terms of
15 such incidents which happened in depth of territory behind the front
17 A. The organs of government in the municipality and, for the most
18 part, the police. The army had nothing to do with such matters. We were
19 only focussed on defence, defending the front line from attacks from the
20 Muslim and Croat forces.
21 Q. Thank you. And I shall conclude with the following question:
22 The area of the municipality of Kotor Varos, Skender Vakuf, Vlasic, did
23 it have anything to do with the use of your units, of the 2nd Krajina
25 A. The territory of these municipalities was in the area of
1 responsibility of the 1st Krajina Corps, and we did not have any contact
2 with these units that were defending those areas.
3 Q. General, sir, on behalf of the Defence of General Mladic I would
4 like to thank you and at this moment we have no further questions for
5 you. Thank you.
6 A. May I just ask you something?
7 JUDGE ORIE: Well --
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I say hello to my commander?
9 JUDGE ORIE: The mere fact that you expressed the wish is heard
10 by him, and you are not to greet the accused in this case on a personal
12 And, Mr. Mladic, if he once speaks aloud again, especially in the
13 circumstances --
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Mladic, it's purely because the witness could
17 not see you that you were greeting him. Otherwise you would have been
18 removed from the courtroom. If it happens again, you'll be removed.
19 That's hereby on the record.
20 Before we take a break, I would have one short question for the
22 Witness, you said that law and order was the competence of the
23 civilian authorities and the police. Now, if any violation of the law
24 would have been committed by soldiers, would it still be the civilian
25 authorities who would be competent to deal with it, or would the military
1 police and the military justice system play a role there as well?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In that case, the military police
3 would arrest such a person, take him to prison, and take appropriate
5 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for that answer.
6 We'll take a break and we'll start cross-examination after the
7 break. We'd like to see you back at 20 minutes to 2.00.
8 We take a break of 20 minutes.
9 --- Recess taken at 1.17 p.m.
10 --- On resuming at 1.41 p.m.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Let's start verifying whether the videolink is still
12 functioning well.
13 THE REGISTRAR: [Via videolink] Yes, Your Honour, it is. We can
14 see you and hear you clearly.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
16 Mr. Boric, you'll now be cross-examined by Mr. Traldi.
17 Mr. Traldi is counsel for the Prosecution.
18 Mr. Traldi, you may proceed.
19 MR. TRALDI: Thank you, Mr. President.
20 Cross-examination by Mr. Traldi:
21 Q. Good afternoon, sir.
22 A. Good afternoon.
23 Q. Sir, you were interviewed as a suspect by the Office of the
24 Prosecutor in 2004; correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Can I take it it's your position that you told the truth in that
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Sir, I want to start now with the transformation of the JNA
5 10th Corps in the 2nd Krajina Corps of the VRS.
6 Now can we have 65 ter 32427, please.
7 Now, we see this is sent from the Main Staff of the Army of the
8 Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. It's dated the 19th of May, 1992
9 to the commands of the 4th, 5th, 9th, 10th, 13th, and 17th Corps, and to
10 two brigades and two logistics bases.
11 The corps referenced are JNA corps; right?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And at the time you were Chief of Staff of the 10th Corps; right?
14 A. No.
15 Q. What was your position at the time?
16 A. Yes, yes. Assistant commander for logistics.
17 Q. Now were you not appointed Chief of Staff of the 10th Corps
18 around 10th of May, 1992?
19 A. Correct.
20 Q. So this document is dated 19th of May. By that point, you were
21 no longer assistant commander for logistics. You'd become the Chief of
22 Staff; right?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Now turning to the end of the document in both languages, we see
25 that it come from General Gvero. He is, at the time, the Main Staff's
1 assistant commander for legal, morale and religious affairs; right?
2 A. That's right.
3 Q. Turning to page 2 in both languages, General Gvero writes at the
4 end of the last sentence in the first -- sorry, in the last sentence of
5 the first paragraph under point II: "The Serbian people in Bosnia and
6 Herzegovina have become politically organised and are determined to fight
7 for their own historical right, national dignity and interests."
8 He continues: "The state-building Serbian people living on
9 around 65 per cent of the territory and representing around 35 per cent
10 of the population of Bosnia and Herzegovina must fight for a total
11 partition from the Muslim and Croatian people and must create their own
13 Now this is part of General Gvero's function in his position,
14 disseminating to subordinate corps the purpose of the war; right?
15 A. One -- well, yes.
16 Q. Now turning to the bottom of the page under point III, we read in
17 the second paragraph that: "A Main Staff was also appointed, with
18 Lieutenant-General Ratko Mladic as the commander, from the very beginning
19 of this war he has very successfully commanded over considerable troops
20 on the Knin battle-field. All the other important elements of a united
21 organisation and leadership and command have also been established."
22 Now, what this reflects is General Gvero informing your command
23 and the other corps commands that the JNA has been transformed in Bosnia,
24 your commander is now the commander of the Main Staff of the VRS,
25 General Mladic; right?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Turning back to the end of the document, we read General Gvero
3 instructing the recipients to "inform all members of the Army of the
4 Serbian Republic of BiH with the content of this announcement in the most
5 appropriate way."
6 And, so, this information about the purpose of the war and
7 General Mladic's command would have been disseminated to the units in
8 what would become the 2nd Krajina Corps; right?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. That would have been done through your corps' organ for legal,
11 morale and religious affairs; right?
12 A. At this moment, no. Because --
13 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... go on, sir.
14 A. The 2nd Corps did not even exist and the 10th Corps, since
15 members from the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Montenegro had
16 left, it boiled down to 250 men. Soldiers and officers. The objective
17 was to reach free territory where the majority population was Serb.
18 Q. Now, you confirmed a moment ago that this information would have
19 been disseminated to the units in what would become the 2nd Krajina
20 Corps. How would it have been disseminated, if you recall?
21 A. I'm looking at the date when this order arrived. That is the
22 19th of May. At that point in time, I was leaving Bihac, so I have no
23 units. As a matter of fact, I'm not even sure that I ever received this
25 Q. You were certainly aware of the purpose and General Mladic's
1 command that we looked at that General Gvero was communicating in this
2 order; right?
3 A. Only when we got out into the territory of the municipality of
4 Petrovac we found out that the commander was Ratko Mladic. Until then he
5 had been in Knin. We did not have TV. We did not have communications.
6 We were leaving Bihac. Sometime at --
7 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We cannot hear the
9 MR. TRALDI:
10 Q. Let's keep this short, sir. When did you arrive in the
11 municipality of Petrovac?
12 A. Around the 23rd of May.
13 Q. And so, at that point, you're saying you became aware
14 General Mladic was the commander and became aware of what the Main Staff
15 was saying was the purpose of the war; is that right?
16 A. I found out then that Ratko Mladic was the commander. I did not
17 find out -- actually, I knew what the purpose of the war was, to defend
18 the Serb people. This order, I did not have that. I did not receive
20 MR. TRALDI: Your Honours, I'll tender the document.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
22 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 32427 receives number P7325.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted into evidence.
24 MR. TRALDI:
25 Q. Now, the personnel in your corps were overwhelmingly Serb
1 throughout the war; right?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And you're aware that in July 1992, General Mladic issued an
4 order to have your non-Serb personnel sent to Belgrade to resolve their
5 pension issues; right?
6 A. No.
7 MR. TRALDI: Can we have 65 ter 32423, please.
8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We did not hear the rest
9 of what the speaker said.
10 JUDGE ORIE: I think the speaker was interrupted by Mr. Traldi.
11 And, therefore, if there's any further explanation of his answer, we'll
12 hear, I take it, on the basis of the following questions.
13 MR. TRALDI:
14 Q. Sir, this is an order dated the 10th of July, 1992. We see it
15 bears your name type signed. And then it's sent to the commands of the
16 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th, 11th, 15th, and 17th Brigades and other units. We
17 see that you say: "In reference" --
18 Sir, I'd ask to you wait for my question.
19 We see that you say: "In reference to a strictly confidential
20 Main Staff order that all AVL of Muslim or Croatian ethnicity shall be
21 sent on annual leave and upon their return from annual leave they shall
22 be sent to the Yugoslav army General Staff personnel administration for
23 the purpose of regulating their further status in service.
24 So this is your order to send on leave all the military personnel
25 in your subordinate units who are of Muslim or Croatian ethnicity; right?
1 A. I don't see my signature, but I assume that it is so because, in
2 that period, I had no one to send.
3 Q. And we see here that this document's being issued on the basis of
4 a Main Staff order. That Main Staff order this Chamber has received
5 evidence came from General Mladic and had the same message: Send on
6 leave active military personnel of Muslim or Croatian ethnicity, and upon
7 their return, send them to the Yugoslav army personnel administration.
8 Now does this order of yours refresh your recollection as to
9 whether General Mladic issued an order to have your non-Serb personnel
10 sent to Belgrade to resolve their administrative issues?
11 A. I don't remember this order. But probably. However, I'm saying
12 Muslims, Croats, Slovenes, they had already left JNA units before we
13 arrived in the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
14 MR. TRALDI: Your Honours, I tender --
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] So this order was not even needed.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. But it was given, Witness, isn't it?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Probably, yes.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, 32423 receives number P7326.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Admitted.
21 MR. TRALDI: And just for the Chamber's and the Defence's
22 record-keeping, the order that I was referring to that had been received
23 by the Chamber is P4971.
24 Q. Now, the personnel described in this document, we see were being
25 sent to the VJ in Belgrade to resolve their status. Your corps also had
1 a number of active servicemen who were formally transferred from the VJ
2 after the 19th of May, 1992; right?
3 A. Yes.
4 MR. TRALDI: Can we have 65 ter 31566, please.
5 Q. Now just as an example, this is a document signed by
6 Lieutenant-Colonel Radivoje Krsic [phoen]. What was his position?
7 A. Chief of the personnel administration in the corps.
8 Q. An aside from the active servicemen on this list, you received
9 your own salary from the VJ; right?
10 A. My family did. They were refugees in Serbia.
11 Q. And once the 30th Personnel Centre was created, your salary was
12 paid through that personnel centre; right?
13 A. My family resolved it, yes.
14 Q. Your Chief of Staff, for instance, Mico Vlaisavljevic, also paid
15 through the 30th Personnel Centre?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And the soldiers we see here, also paid out of Belgrade; right?
18 A. Probably.
19 MR. TRALDI: Your Honour, I tender 65 ter 31566.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Madam Registrar.
21 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, the document receives number P7327.
22 JUDGE ORIE: P7327 is admitted.
23 MR. TRALDI:
24 Q. Now, you've mentioned earlier in your testimony today that you'd
25 had to withdraw -- the 10th Corps withdrew from Bihac in May of 1992. At
1 the time of that withdrawal, everything that was in the barracks,
2 artillery, Howitzers, Pragas, armoured combat vehicles, that was all
3 taken to Serb territory; right?
4 A. That is correct.
5 Q. So you had a battalion-strength unit of artillery?
6 A. Somewhat less. Because 200 soldiers in total came out. Part
7 of -- part of them were in the logistical units and the rest were used to
8 establish an artillery unit.
9 Q. You also had, for instance, a police -- a military police unit
10 with armoured combat vehicles; right?
11 A. We had a police battalion. However, the commander of that
12 battalion took one company and went to join the units of Republika Srpska
13 Krajina, whereas, the rest remained with me. We ultimately reached the
14 sector of Petrovac.
15 Q. And I want to briefly ask about the functioning of the corps
16 command. You had a morning meeting, right?
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Before you do, is this answer in response to your
18 question? You're talking about armoured vehicles. Now he is telling you
19 how the unit was split.
20 MR. TRALDI:
21 Q. Sir, just to follow up briefly on your previous answer, is it
22 correct that the portion of the military police battalion that came with
23 you had, among other things, armoured combat vehicles?
24 A. Yes, it is.
25 Q. Briefly turning to the functioning of the corps command.
1 You had a morning meeting; right?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. If you were present, you ran the meeting?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Otherwise your chief of --
6 A. Or it was run by the chief --
7 Q. If you were not present, it was run by the Chief of Staff,
8 Mico Vlaisavljevic; right?
9 A. Precisely.
10 Q. You had a good relationship with him?
11 A. We were on exceptional good terms -- exceptionally good terms.
12 Q. And your assistant commanders, Lieutenant-Colonel Krsic who we
13 discussed earlier, the assistant commander for logistics,
14 Vaso Majkin [phoen], the assistant commander for finance and planning,
15 Dusko Amadzic [phoen], and the assistant commander for security and
16 intelligence Mihajlo Mitrovic, they would attend this morning meeting;
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And the information you discussed at the meeting would come from
20 subordinate units, would also come from neighbouring corps. It would
21 also come from the Main Staff. Among other things, you would get
22 information from all three of those sources; right?
23 A. That is correct. Based on that, tasks were issued for the day.
24 Q. And every day, somebody from the corps command would inspect one
25 of the subordinate units; right?
1 A. To the front lines, to tour the fighters there.
2 Q. And you, yourself, as corps commander, within a week, you'd
3 inspect the brigades, meet with the brigade commanders, and also meet
4 with the relevant municipality presidents; right?
5 A. That is also correct.
6 Q. That's all the brigades from Krupa to Kupres; right?
7 A. Right.
8 Q. Now, we discussed information coming from other corps. One of
9 the ways that you would share information with other corps was through
10 the security and intelligence link; right?
11 A. Right.
12 Q. Okay. I'm going to step back in time for a moment now to
13 April 1992 when you were still assistant commander for logistics in the
14 JNA's 10th Corps.
15 Now, in that capacity, you were involved in arming Serb units in
16 what would become the 2nd Krajina Corps's area of responsibility; right?
17 A. First of all, it wasn't 1992. It was April 1991.
18 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... specific. I'm asking you
19 about April 1992. At that point you were assistant commander for
20 logistics in the 10th Corps, and one of the things you did in that job
21 was assist in facilitating the arming of Serb units in what would become
22 the 2 KK's area of responsibility. That's the truth; right?
23 A. Not quite.
24 Q. Well, let's look at some documents quickly. Can we have --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Just before -- could the witness please be allowed
1 to explain in one or two words why it is not completely right?
2 MR. TRALDI:
3 Q. Sir, could you explain why you think it's not quite right that
4 you facilitated the arming of Serb units in what would become the 2 KK
6 A. There was only one case, the command or, rather, the municipal
7 president from Krupa na Uni submitted a request to provide some assets
8 and to assist them in the establishment of units. That request was sent
9 to the General Staff in Belgrade, following which an order arrived to
10 assist them to the extent possible. A group of seven officers was sent
11 with Colonel Nikolic --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Witness, I'm going to interrupt you. At this moment
13 we're not interested in the details of that one time.
14 Do you say it's not -- not quite true because it happened only at
15 one occasion? Is that the gist of what ...
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's right. That's right.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Traldi, we know more or less
18 what may need further exploration.
19 MR. TRALDI:
20 Q. Now that occasion, and because we're close to the end of the day,
21 I'm going to ask you to answer just with a yes or no. That occasion was
22 during the attack on Bosanska Krupa town by the Serb TO in Bosanska
23 Krupa; right?
24 A. It was before it happened.
25 Q. Well, just so we're precise let's have 65 ter 18365.
1 Now, this is a document if we zoom in on the date we can see it's
2 the 23rd of April, 1992. We can see it bears your name. That it's sent
3 to the command of the 2nd Military District. That it reflects that the
4 Serbian Municipality of Bosanska Krupa asked the command of the
5 530th logistics base and the 10th command for help in forming units. And
6 we see at the end that you're passing on that you think certain material
7 supplies should be approved and we see the confidential, the top secret
8 number in the top left, 19/81-442.
9 If we can turn to 65 ter 18366.
10 Now this is a document dated the 24th of April, 1992 coming from
11 the 2nd Military District Command General Kukanjac. He refers to the
12 urgency of the realisation of the task on forming the Serbian
13 municipality Bosanska Krupa TO units. And he's ordering to issue
14 weapons, ammunition and equipment for these newly formed TO units. We
15 see in the heading, he refers - and we'd have to zoom in on the B/C/S
16 because of the quality of the scan - to confidential number 19/81-442 so
17 this is the instance you were referring to where you facilitated the
18 arming of Serb units in Bosanska Krupa; right?
19 A. That is not correct. The 10th Corps command sent officers to
20 assist with the establishment of units, and the 530th Brigade sent what
21 was needed in terms of weaponry because we did not have any reserve
22 weapons and ammunition.
23 Q. So you facilitated this request clearly by passing it on to
24 General Kukanjac and recommending that it be approved; right?
25 A. That is correct.
1 MR. TRALDI: Can we have 65 ter -- just briefly to close the
2 topic, if I may, Mr. President.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, if you do so very briefly.
4 MR. TRALDI: 65 ter 12842.
5 Q. This is a combat readiness report by the 11th Brigade, sent to
6 the command of the 2nd Krajina Corps on the 26th February 1993. Now this
7 would have been sent to you; right?
8 THE REGISTRAR: [Via videolink] Sorry, Mr. Traldi, could you
9 repeat the number.
10 MR. TRALDI: 12842. I only have two questions on the document.
11 THE REGISTRAR: [Via videolink] Yes, we have it now. Thank you.
12 MR. TRALDI: Thank you.
13 Q. Looking below point 1, command and control, we read about the
14 situation in Bosanska Krupa. We read references to the balance of
15 forces, what the brigade initially consisted of. We read that the
16 brigade became a 2 KK unit in mid-May 1992.
17 And below that we read that the brigade mounted an attack on
18 Bosanska Krupa on 21 April 1992, and by 25 April 1992 it had pushed back
19 opposing units.
20 So through your facilitating the approval of their request, the
21 2nd Military District was arming the Serb what was then the Serb force,
22 the Serb TO in Bosanska Krupa during the attack on the town; right?
23 A. That is correct. But they were in the town itself and the town
24 was divided as the river runs through it. On the left side, there were
25 Muslims. On the right, Serbs. There was also a curtain placed in the
1 middle so that the two sides could not try to engage each other with
3 MR. TRALDI: I thank the Court for its indulgence, and I'm happy
4 to deal with the other three documents in the morning.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Witness, we'll adjourn for the day, and we'd
6 like to see you back tomorrow morning at 9.30, Mr. Boric. But before you
7 leave the videolink room, I'd like to instruct you that you should not
8 speak or communicate in whatever way with whomever about your testimony,
9 whether that is testimony you've given today, or whether that is
10 testimony still to be given tomorrow.
11 Is that clear to you?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Clear.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Then we can conclude the videolink.
14 Mr. Lukic, you're on your feet.
15 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. I just want to inform Your Honours
16 that Mr. Mladic will not with us tomorrow, and he gave us his consent
17 that we can continue with the trial tomorrow.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes --
19 MR. LUKIC: He signed a document. We will upload it into the
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, he waives his right --
22 MR. LUKIC: He waives --
23 JUDGE ORIE: -- to attend the court hearing tomorrow. That is
24 hereby on the record, and I see that Mr. Mladic seems to agree.
25 Mr. Traldi, and I'm also looking at you, Mr. Stojanovic.
1 Tomorrow is the last day on which we have organised the videolink. Are
2 you confident that we would be able to conclude the testimony of
3 Mr. Boric tomorrow?
4 MR. TRALDI: I can say I'm ahead of schedule compared to what I'd
5 estimated. And I don't know obviously at this time how much time
6 Mr. Stojanovic might need at the end, but we can speak and certainly
7 we'll both make our best efforts.
8 JUDGE ORIE: If you can speak and divide the time in such a way
9 that is best guaranteed that we conclude the evidence of Mr. Boric
10 tomorrow, that would be appreciated.
11 We adjourn for the day, and we'll resume tomorrow, Thursday, the
12 23rd of April, 9.30 in the morning, in this same courtroom, I.
13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.21 p.m.,
14 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 23rd day of
15 April, 2015, at 9.30 a.m.