Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 408

1 Wednesday, 7 September 2005

2 [Status Conference]

3 [Open session]

4 --- Upon commencing at 2.32 p.m.

5 [The accused entered court]

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Good afternoon. Mr. Registrar, could you call

7 the case, please.

8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honour. This is case number

9 IT-95-13/1-PT, the Prosecutor Mile Mrksic, Miroslav Radic, and Veselin

10 Sljivancanin.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you.

12 Please make yourself comfortable. Let's start with you,

13 Mr. Mrksic. Before we proceed, I want to make sure that you can follow

14 the proceedings in your own language. Yes, Mr. Mrksic. I want to make

15 sure that you can follow the proceedings in your own language.

16 THE ACCUSED MRKSIC: [Interpretation] Yes, I can, Your Honour.

17 Thank you.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.

19 Mr. Radic, same question.

20 THE ACCUSED RADIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour.

21 Yes, I can follow. Thank you.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, too.

23 Mr. Sljivancanin, same question. Mr. Sljivancanin is not

24 receiving any interpretation, I take it.

25 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter cannot hear Mr. Sljivancanin.

Page 409

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Can he move and use the other microphone, please.

2 Can you hear interpretation now? Can we have technical

3 assistance, please.

4 THE ACCUSED SLJIVANCANIN: [Interpretation] Yes, everything is all

5 right.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I just, for formality's sake, I just

7 want to confirm that you are receiving interpretation in your own

8 language.

9 THE ACCUSED SLJIVANCANIN: [Interpretation] Yes, it's all right

10 now.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you, and good afternoon to you, too.

12 You may sit down.

13 Appearances for the Prosecution.

14 MR. MOORE: My name is Moore, I'm a senior trial attorney. I'm

15 assisted by Ms. Mary Tuma, who sits on my right, Mr. Alex Demirdjian,

16 further on my right, and Ms. Sandra D'Angelo, who's on my left, as case

17 manager.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Moore, and good afternoon to you

19 and your team.

20 Appearances for accused Mrksic.

21 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour. Good

22 afternoon to everyone in the courtroom. Appearing for Mr. Mrksic is

23 attorney-at-law Mr. Miroslav Vasic. Thank you.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, and good afternoon to you, Mr. Vasic.

25 Appearances for accused Radic.

Page 410

1 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour.

2 Good afternoon, all. The accused, Miroslav Radic, will be represented

3 today by co-counsel, Mira Tapuskovic. Thank you.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam, and good afternoon to you.

5 And appearances for accused Veselin Sljivancanin.

6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour. Good

7 afternoon to everybody. The defence of Mr. Sljivancanin will be

8 represented by Novak Lukic, and my co-counsel, Mr. Momcilo Bulatovic.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Lukic, and good afternoon to you

10 and Mr. Bulatovic.

11 So, the reasons for this Status Conference, first. This is not

12 just a formality. It's important because the public who will be following

13 these proceedings will know exactly what is a Status Conference and why it

14 is convened at regular intervals before the trial starts.

15 First of all, I'd like to remind everyone that the last Status

16 Conference was held way back on the 12th of May of this year, and this one

17 is being held within the time period established under Rule 65 bis,

18 namely, within the 120 days that are set down and within which periodical

19 Status Conferences need to be held.

20 The purpose of a Status Conference is to organise exchanges

21 between the parties so as to ensure an expeditious preparation for trial.

22 Secondly, to review the status of the accuseds' case and to give an

23 opportunity for the accused to raise issues thereto. And last, but not

24 least, to give an opportunity for each of the accused to raise issues in

25 relation to the mental and/or physical conditions and matters generally

Page 411

1 related to their state of detention.

2 Upon my instructions, our Senior Legal Officer, Mr. Von Hebel,

3 held a 65 ter meeting this morning, and he has reported to me on the

4 outcome of that meeting. I will be touching on several matters that I'm

5 informed were raised during the meeting as we proceed with this Status

6 Conference.

7 This may or may not be the last Status Conference in these

8 pre-trial proceedings. It was certainly meant to be the last one before

9 the 65 ter meeting that you had this morning. I pretty much expect that

10 there might be the need for a further Status Conference as we go along. I

11 will tell you straight away that it will not be me myself that will

12 preside over that Status Conference, because I had already decided before

13 today that, in the course of this week or early next week, I will be

14 appointing, assigning, Judge Kevin Parker to be a Pre-Trial Judge between

15 now and when the trial begins. I suppose you are already aware that it is

16 most likely that Judge Parker will be the Presiding Judge in the trial.

17 So what will be left over today, I think he will be dealing with.

18 For the benefit of the public, there were some developments after

19 the last Status Conference that I think ought to be made public once more.

20 They are public from the press releases of this Tribunal, but I think I

21 can condense the events in a minute or so and inform the general public on

22 what happened.

23 You know that there was, even at the time of the last Status

24 Conference, a motion pending for referral of this case to the special

25 court -- to another court, anyway, to another court, which would not be

Page 412

1 this Tribunal.

2 Then, on the 9th of June, while the referral motion to -- was

3 still pending before the special Bench that we have dealing with those

4 matters, on the 9th of June, due to potential difficulties specific to the

5 case, which had not been foreseen at the time of filing the relative

6 motion for referral, and -- the Prosecution filed a motion for withdrawal

7 of that motion, requesting the referral Bench to grant leave to withdraw

8 the motion and request for referral and to order the reinstatement of the

9 case to the appropriate Trial Chamber of the Tribunal. Actually, the case

10 didn't need to be reinstated, because it always belonged to the Trial

11 Chamber of this Tribunal, and it would have ceased to be so had there been

12 a referral or a definitive basis.

13 On the 13th of June, in any case, the Defence for the accused

14 filed a joint response opposing the motion for withdrawal and requesting

15 the indictment to be referred to the authorities of Serbia and Montenegro.

16 On the 10th of June, the Government of Serbia and Montenegro filed

17 a submission requesting that the Prosecution motion be rejected and that

18 the indictment in the present case be referred to its relevant

19 authorities. And subsequently, to be precise, on the 30th of June, the

20 referral Bench granted the motion, Prosecution motion for withdrawal,

21 holding that "for reasons already given, this is not an obvious case for

22 referral, and, in the Bench's view, it would be unjustified and unwise to

23 act on its own initiative to order referral in this particular case, given

24 the complexity of the crimes which have been raised by the submissions and

25 the intensity of feelings generated amongst interested parties by the

Page 413

1 prospect of referral."

2 This is background information for those who were not aware of it.

3 Obviously, present company excluded.

4 So I'll touch upon the first item on the agenda, real item on the

5 agenda, and that is the Prosecution pre-trial brief and list of witnesses

6 required under Rule 66(A)(ii).

7 Upon reviewing the relative documents, I notice that on the 29th

8 of August of this year, the Prosecution filed its pre-trial brief,

9 including its final list of witnesses, or what was described then as the

10 final list of Prosecution witnesses, and according to which the

11 Prosecution intends to call 88 witnesses, 70 of whom would be produced to

12 give evidence viva voce, and 18, the remaining 18, are purported to become

13 Rule 92 bis witnesses. Of course, that stands to be seen. It's a matter

14 to be decided upon at a later stage.

15 Broadly speaking, the witnesses that the Prosecution intends to

16 bring forward, are proposing, can be comfortably or conveniently divided

17 into six categories.

18 The first category would be of professionals, consisting of one

19 ICTY, one Tribunal expert witness, five witnesses from outside this

20 Tribunal, three international witnesses, and that would make it to nine.

21 In addition, it's being sought that there will be two ICTY investigators

22 and five journalists. So this first category would amount to 16. Then

23 there are civilians, of whom 19 of locals, 11 Vukovar Hospital staff, 11

24 Vukovar Hospital staff. Then there's a third category, consisting of

25 civilians authorities, namely, five members of the autonomous region of

Page 414

1 SBWS, two members of other civilian authorities. Then there are 14

2 members of the JNA 1st Guards Motorised Brigade, four members of the JNA

3 80th Motorised Brigade, seven JNA officers, three members of the local

4 Serb TO and Serb volunteers, five members of the Croatian National Guard,

5 the ZNG, and, finally, two members of the military judiciary.

6 I don't think I need to address this any further. This is

7 information that you already had. I am just relaying it in open court.

8 Then I come to the use of Rules 89(F) and 92 bis. I notice that

9 the Prosecution has not yet filed any motion for the admission of the

10 statements under Rule 92 bis of the Rules, and in addition, the

11 Prosecution has not yet identified the witnesses for whom it intends to

12 introduce written statements pursuant to Rule 89(F). I know that this was

13 discussed this morning and that there is an undertaking which I now need

14 confirmation of, that the motion for the admission of Rule 92 bis

15 statements will be filed by the Prosecution by the 23rd of September, as

16 communicated to you by Mr. Von Hebel during this morning's meeting.

17 Mr. Moore.

18 MR. MOORE: Your Honour is quite correct that we indicated we

19 would endeavour to file that motion by the 23rd of September. My

20 understanding, however, is there may be a difficulty. Whereas OTP can

21 ensure that investigators go and meet the witnesses and ensure that the

22 signature of agreement of the content is -- that the witness is satisfied

23 that it is the truth, the administration require, apparently, three weeks'

24 notice before they can release any members of the Court staff to accompany

25 the OTP. So while we are in a position to do it, I think that the

Page 415












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Page 416

1 Registry, as a matter of precedent, require three weeks' notice. This was

2 not something we were aware of. I suspect Mr. Von Hebel was unaware of it

3 as well. But clearly, that creates a difficulty in respect of the 92 bis

4 motions.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Right. I thank you, Mr. Moore. That's a very valid

6 point that you have raised. I saw Mr. Von Hebel nodding, so presumably

7 this is news for him as well. So what I suggest you do is you explore,

8 Mr. Von Hebel, with the Registry, whether, first, this process could be

9 expedited for us to be able to retain the date of the 23rd of September.

10 If that is not possible, please, Mr. Moore, consider this to be one of the

11 leftovers to which I will refer towards the end of this Status Conference

12 today. In other words, if Mr. Von Hebel, interceding -- upon interceding

13 with the Registrar to see if the whole process to be expedited to make it

14 possible to retain the 23rd of September is unsuccessful, then obviously

15 we have to find -- to find a solution, and that would be one of the

16 leftovers.

17 MR. MOORE: Before we move to leftovers, if we may --

18 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm coming to the leftovers later.

19 MR. MOORE: Before I get to the leftovers, may I deal with the

20 main course, just initially, that we were hoping to send two

21 investigators, and that will cut down the time level. Therefore, it will

22 require two members from the Registry, not one.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Von Hebel, is that news again? Yes. All right.

24 You will handle it. You will then liaise with Mr. Moore. If the period

25 established, the deadline established, needs to be extended, then

Page 417

1 obviously it will be extended, but it will be a matter which I will

2 classify as leftovers and which will be dealt with separately then by

3 Judge Parker instead of by myself. This is what I meant. All right? Am

4 I clear? All right. Thanks.

5 Does the same apply to -- no it doesn't follow, but what about the

6 Rule 89(F). We'll keep the same deadline for the purpose of that

7 Sub-rule?

8 MR. MOORE: I know Mr. Von Hebel will have informed the Court of

9 the Prosecution submissions in relation to this. Our submission is as

10 follows: That we will clearly try and identify what I will call alpha

11 witnesses and bravo witnesses, witnesses that we can perhaps place first.

12 And if, as a direct consequence of the nature of examination by the Bench

13 and/or my learned friends, we perhaps then can use the 89(F) procedure.

14 But may I please place on the record that I reserve my position in

15 relation to making any further submissions in respect of this matter.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I thank you, Mr. Moore.

17 Now let's come to matters of disclosure. First of all, about this

18 matter that I have just brought to an end, namely, the list of witnesses,

19 matters related to the pre-trial brief, are there any comments from the

20 Defence? If there are no comments ...

21 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. The Defence has no

22 comments in this respect. Thank you.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Vasic.

24 Now we come to disclosure, and I will just go through the

25 information as I have tried to collect it and condense it.

Page 418

1 I am informed, and please correct me if I'm wrong, that the

2 Prosecution has disclosed all statements for witnesses 1 to 53, except for

3 the redacted statements of five so-called sensitive witnesses, to be

4 disclosed to the Defence later on. I am informed that two witnesses have

5 not given statements to the Prosecution and that, for these witnesses, the

6 Prosecution disclosed the transcript of their prior testimonies in other

7 Tribunal cases. This was disclosed on a CD-ROM, I'm told. But I am also

8 informed that the accused do not have access to this medium at the

9 Detention Unit.

10 I have been given to understand that the parties will be meeting.

11 There will be mutual consultations, with a view to finding a more

12 traditional form of disclosing this material and making it thus available

13 to the accused. Am I correct in this information or not? I see some

14 hesitation on the face of Mr. Moore.

15 MR. MOORE: The traditional method, of course, is hard copy. We

16 are talking probably somewhere between 10 or 15.000 pages, and that in

17 itself will create difficulties. Might I respectfully submit that, and I

18 suspect the Defence will support this, that perhaps with Your Honour's

19 assistance and guidance, that the issue of compatibility of computers and

20 access to computers be dealt with as a matter of priority? Because if

21 that is dealt with initially, then the disclosure and reading of all

22 material will resolve itself. If we leave it to hard copies, I can

23 definitely see problems not only for the Prosecution but also to the

24 Defence teams and the defendants, when they have to carry that amount of

25 papers.

Page 419

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Can someone enlighten me?

2 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Your Honour.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Sorry about that. Can someone enlighten me on the

4 problem that may exist at the unit, the Detention Unit, when it comes to

5 access to data stored in electronic form, such as CD-ROMs? What's the

6 situation? Because at least from the information that I had in other

7 cases, the only problems that I have encountered are problems arising from

8 the accused's side and not from the administration side. In other words,

9 the facilities are there, and when it's a problem of the accused or the

10 detainee requiring assistance, it is also made available. Sometimes it's

11 ordered by the Trial Chamber, sometimes the commandant himself and/or the

12 Registrar make it available. So on a personal level, having followed

13 other cases, being involved, I don't know what the problem is. Perhaps

14 someone can enlighten me. Why is -- if I may ask, why is access by the

15 accused to these CD-ROMs at the Detention Unit not possible?

16 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, nobody has claimed that

17 the access to CD-ROMs at the Detention Unit is impossible. What is at

18 stake here is that the accused Mrksic currently has no computer through

19 which he can access any CD-ROMs, nor is he trained to use computers. In

20 view of how things transpired in this case, and in view of the

21 insufficient amount of time that we had from the minute when the trial

22 beginning was scheduled, until this Status Conference was held, we had no

23 idea in what form the disclosure would be. It turned out that the

24 disclosure was in the form of CD-ROMs. But in addition to that, we also

25 received a large volume of hard-copy material. Now we are faced with the

Page 420

1 need to ensure that all of the accused have computers so that they can

2 analyse the material disclosed by the OTP.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: For the time being -- I thank you, Mr. Vasic. Is

4 there anything else you would like to state, you or Mr. Lukic or anyone

5 else? Does your client have a computer available?

6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. My client does have

7 a computer. I was told by my client that he's able to listen to audio

8 recordings which he receives electronically. But now that we are dealing

9 with these typical technical issues, allow me to say that we have the

10 following problem: If he's listening to an audio recording, and we are

11 talking of very long recordings, he has to listen to the entire version in

12 B/C/S in order to be able to give me instructions. In that sense, it is

13 much easier for us to conduct searches of the English-language material

14 and then to analyse only portions of it. But our clients, even if they

15 are trained in the use of computers, have to listen to the entire length

16 of very long transcripts, which perhaps do not relate to Vukovar alone but

17 may relate to some other issues. And these are very, very long

18 transcripts. Our clients are unable to read the material. They can only

19 listen to the audio recording.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Ms. Tapuskovic, do you want to make a

21 statement in this regard or not?

22 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I would

23 like to add something to what my colleague Lukic stated. When an accused

24 listens to an audio recording of a trial, when he listens at the DU to a

25 testimony given by a witness, the time is seen on the screen. If the

Page 421

1 accused wishes to give any kind of instruction to his Defence counsel, the

2 accused has to say, at such-and-such time, at such-and-such hour,

3 such-and-such minute, the witness said the following.

4 We have no technical capabilities to find that exact portion in

5 the material that we receive, in the form that we receive it. This

6 problem arose when a large amount of transcripts was disclosed, as my

7 colleague, my learned friend Mr. Moore said, that was the material which

8 was between 10.000 and 15.000 pages. The disclosure was completed.

9 However, the technical facilities are not adequate in order to enable the

10 accused to have proper access to this material and to ensure that their

11 rights are respected in this sense. This is a very serious technical

12 issue.

13 Other technical issues and problems that we are faced with have to

14 do with whether the computer is purchased by the Registry or by the family

15 of the accused. If the family of the accused has to procure a computer,

16 then this computer is, so to speak, confiscated by the Registry for quite

17 a long period of time in order to check it thoroughly. And unfortunately,

18 right now, when the beginning of the trial is so close, we don't have the

19 luxury of time.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: I take it, because we have digressed a little and

21 touched upon other matters that are related but which I did not have in

22 mind to deal with today. As I take it, the problem as it arose related

23 only to the two witnesses that had not given statements to the

24 Prosecution. And the Prosecution decided to disclose the transcripts of

25 their prior testimonies in other cases on CD-ROM. Could we, at least as

Page 422

1 far as the testimony, the transcript of the testimony of these two

2 witnesses, provide the parties with a hard copy? Now, and this, we're

3 certainly talking about thousands here. Without creating a precedent or

4 without prejudicing your position as regards electronic disclosure.

5 MR. MOORE: If we can provide it, we'll do so.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's leave it at that, because basically what I had

7 been reported was in relation to this. On the other hand, if, as we go

8 along, or as you go along, we will need to refer to CD-ROMs that have been

9 disclosed, and of course I acknowledge that you will need continuous

10 consultation with your clients and that your clients must have access to

11 these CD-ROMs, I see problems if at least one of them -- I take, Mr.

12 Vasic, Mr. Mrksic, your client, hasn't even got at his disposal a computer

13 at the moment. Is that correct?

14 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Yes, as I've said, Your Honour. It's

15 correct.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: So has this been discussed between you or your

17 client and the Registry -- and the Registrar? Has this matter come up for

18 discussion?

19 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this matter was not

20 raised. The disclosure was received -- the largest portion of the

21 material that was disclosed to us was received within the last two weeks,

22 when we were very busy working on our pre-trial brief. Therefore, we had

23 no time to react. In addition to that, we also have the problems that my

24 colleagues, the other Defence counsel, informed you about, concerning the

25 material disclosed to us by the OTP.

Page 423












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Page 424

1 JUDGE AGIUS: What I want to find out for the time being is if

2 there is a problem in providing your client with a PC, with a personal

3 computer, or whatever kind of computer is necessary. Has he filed a

4 demand for one, a claim for one, or not yet? Because if he's filed a

5 claim for one and it's been refused, it's one thing. If the matter hasn't

6 come up before the Registrar, it's completely another matter.

7 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] This matter was not raised before the

8 Registry. My client will request a computer. The matter was not raised

9 earlier because the pace of disclosure and the pace of motions submitted

10 by the OTP was such that he had no time to demand this earlier. My client

11 will put in a request and we will inform the Chamber about the outcome.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm going to inform Judge Parker that this may

13 become an outstanding matter later on which he might decide he needs to

14 deal with. So Mr. Sljivancanin has a computer. Is it his own or was it

15 provided to him by the Registry?

16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think he has his own computer which

17 he received from his family. But another issue, Your Honour, that I need

18 to raise for the record. We are not referring to the transcripts of only

19 two witnesses. We received at least -- we received transcripts of at

20 least 15 witnesses within the past few weeks.

21 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would like to add

22 something else. We are very grateful for your willingness to see that

23 this matter is resolved. As we are talking about a very large number of

24 CDs. Only one witness gave interview for 11 days, and this material is on

25 seven CDs. Therefore, you see what amount of material this is, how much

Page 425

1 time is needed in order to analyse this, to go over this with our clients.

2 The testimony of certain individuals or certain statements that were, for

3 example, given in the Milosevic case, were given over a very long period

4 of time. So not all of the transcripts pertain to our indictment

5 specifically. However, it is much easier for us, as Defence counsel, to

6 analyse an issue much quicker than our clients. We are not always present

7 here; therefore, we cannot keep on working at it with our clients.

8 Now, another matter that I would like to raise, and I pray for

9 understanding, both from the Chamber and from the OTP, is this: When I

10 brought some CDs to my client, Mr. Vasic [as interpreted], they were

11 almost confiscated from me because they were not labelled with the text

12 indicating that these CDs were the property of the OTP. Because the DU

13 believes that any of us can take any CD-ROM and put a label on it. What

14 we need to do is that we need to ensure that the CDs are properly

15 labelled. Otherwise, the officials at the Detention Unit will confiscate

16 the material in order to verify whether this was the material that was

17 properly disclosed by the OTP. We understand the safety issues and other

18 regulations in place of the Detention Unit; however, they seriously impede

19 the work that has to be done in order to prepare for the case with your

20 clients.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Your client's computer, is it his own or was it

22 provided to him by the ...

23 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Mr. Radic has his own personal

24 computer, and he is much more trained to use it than I am, to tell you the

25 truth.

Page 426

1 JUDGE AGIUS: So let me make myself understood also, that when I

2 said Mr. Mrksic to maybe proceed with filing a claim, I am in no way

3 committing the Tribunal with a responsibility or a duty to provide him

4 with one. And there's a policy, of course, which is followed, and I would

5 not interfere with that. Similarly, I wouldn't interfere,

6 Madam Tapuskovic, and please do understand me, with the protocol that is

7 resorted to, was established and observed at the Detention Unit. If they

8 have their own requirements for reasons that they believe are necessary,

9 be it security, be it others, I would be the last one to interfere with

10 those. So if there are rules as to how they should be labelled and how

11 they should be made available, et cetera, please try to make sure that the

12 rules are followed. Don't expect any of the Judges to intervene in

13 matters that are beyond their jurisdiction and belong exclusively to the

14 commandant of the Detention Unit who, I must state publicly, is very much

15 aware of the rights of each of the detainees and tries to ensure that

16 there is no obstruction when it comes to the consultations that they need

17 to have with Defence counsel.

18 So I wouldn't intervene for the time being, because I don't see

19 why I should intervene.

20 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I deeply regret if

21 you took my words as a request for any kind of intervention on your part.

22 No, that was not my intention. The Defence is absolutely willing to

23 adhere to any rules in place at the Detention Unit. I simply wanted to

24 explain the kind of problems we're facing.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: I think these problems are arising on a daily basis,

Page 427

1 actually. Not in this case only, but in every other case.

2 Now, I am informed that the English versions of witnesses 54 to 84

3 were disclosed to the Defence on the 29th of July, and the B/C/S version

4 of the same was disclosed on the 19th of August. If that information is

5 not correct, please correct it now. I'm also informed by Mr. Von Hebel

6 that this morning he directed the Prosecution to file a motion requesting

7 protective measures for the remaining witnesses on Monday, this Monday,

8 coming Monday, or soon thereafter. Again, please register any

9 disagreement with what I'm stating now if my statement is not correct.

10 Yes, Ms. Tapuskovic.

11 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I must

12 say that Defence teams have an ongoing, almost permanent contact with the

13 OTP, in order to ensure that we inform the Chamber in the most accurate

14 way about what has been disclosed. At the 65 ter meetings, between those

15 meetings, and during Status Conferences, we regularly meet in order to

16 compare our data. Most likely because of a very short period of time that

17 elapsed between the last meeting and this one, a misunderstanding arose

18 because of that. And in the meantime, some issues, some things changed,

19 and perhaps this is what caused the confusion. Five witnesses were

20 granted protective measures in March of this year. Their statements have

21 finally been disclosed to us in their unredacted version. That was done

22 today. As you can see, Your Honour, based on the list of witnesses dated

23 the 29th of August, there are some new witnesses on that list for whom

24 protective measures will be sought, mostly witnesses from Witness 20 and

25 on, because the list of witness 1 to 19 is identical to the previous

Page 428

1 lists. Out of that number, there remain six statements, or six witnesses,

2 concerning which we have no information. We have neither B/C/S nor

3 English version of their statements.

4 As we were just told by the OTP, they wish to submit a new motion

5 for new protective measures. Based on our records, there is another one,

6 or perhaps two witnesses, who have no protective measures granted and

7 whose identity is known to us, in relation to whom we received no

8 statements, be it in B/C/S or in English.

9 With your leave, we would like now to discuss some issues related

10 to future protective measures.

11 As you may be well aware, Your Honour, a large number of witnesses

12 scheduled to testify here already testified in previous cases, namely, the

13 Dokmanovic and Milosevic trials. The witnesses sought protective

14 measures, and, in the order dated the 9th of March this year, there were

15 two groups of witnesses from two OTP motions for protective measures. The

16 Defence never once objected to protective measures being granted to

17 witnesses who testified previously in the Dokmanovic and Milosevic case

18 under protective measures. We objected only in those instances where the

19 witnesses gave previous testimonies, be it here or in national courts,

20 without any protective measures. The Chamber granted our requests in such

21 instances, and in two cases refused to grant protective measures to two

22 witnesses, P4 and P14.

23 When the time comes for the Defence to respond to the OTP

24 requests, it is much easier for the Defence to do it before the Chamber

25 rules on it, because it is much easier to object before the Chamber rules

Page 429

1 on it. Therefore, if you believe that it is justified in this case, we

2 would like to ask the OTP to state whether the witness seeking protective

3 measures already testified in a previous case, perhaps Dokmanovic or

4 Milosevic case, or in another case - very important both for the OTP and

5 for us - that we normally refer to as the Ovcara case.

6 I think this is a very important issue. Today we received

7 statements of witnesses with protective measures, and it is our

8 understanding that these witnesses previously testified, both here and in

9 Belgrade, without protective measures. No justification was given in the

10 OTP motion, at least not in the motion we received. Perhaps the OTP put

11 the justification or the reasons for protective measures in their ex parte

12 motion that we never saw. But we would like to kindly ask the OTP to

13 always put in a justification for such a request in all of their future

14 motions. Thank you.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: -- issue straight away a fact that a person may have

16 given evidence here or else where without any protective measures in place

17 in the past does not necessarily mean that under all circumstances, by all

18 means, he must or she must be refused any protective measures before this

19 Tribunal now. Because circumstances may have changed. What's certain is

20 that the practice, at least to my knowledge, has always been that if the

21 Prosecution is seeking protective measures for particular prospective

22 witness, reasons are given. And if there are no reasons or if the reasons

23 given are insufficient, then the consequence is that the Trial Chamber

24 will not grant the protective measures being sought.

25 So I would leave it -- I do not -- I cannot tell the Prosecution

Page 430

1 what they should or should not include in their respective motions,

2 because I suppose they know that if the reasons brought forward are not

3 sufficient, they will not be successful in the motion. Secondly, I do

4 think that it would be important for the Trial Chamber at least to know if

5 the person on whose behalf the Prosecution is seeking protective measures

6 has given evidence, testimony, in other trials here, or elsewhere, and

7 whether such evidence was given with protective measures in place, I think

8 that would be very useful information. I will not impose it, of course,

9 on the Prosecution, because I don't think it's the case of imposing it at

10 this particular stage. But I think it would be extremely useful

11 information that would enable the Trial Chamber, whatever the composition,

12 to be able to come to a good decision.

13 I think I've sent my message loud and clear, without making any

14 positions which I think would be out of place.

15 MR. MOORE: No. We would agree with that particular assessment.

16 It's clearly a factor for the Court to take into account, but not

17 definitive, and we will assist the Court in that respect.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, and I appreciate that, Mr. Moore. And

19 thank you, Ms. Tapuskovic, for raising the matter.

20 Now, the other thing I wanted to clear, because I feel I have a

21 little bit of confusion in my mind now, is I'm going to ask you a simple

22 question. Are there any witnesses the identity of whom is still unknown

23 to the Defence, or are you now fully aware of the identity of all the

24 witnesses, including those that you were unaware of until recently?

25 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] I will continue, Your Honour,

Page 431












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Page 432

1 because this is an issue that has been delegated to me by my colleagues.

2 We have several more witnesses for whom protective measures will

3 be sought, from P022 to P028. The total number of witnesses who already

4 have protective measures or will be granted them, is 29, according to the

5 current list of the OTP. However, the identity of Witnesses P22 to P28 is

6 still not disclosed to us, has not been disclosed to us.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you agree to that, Mr. Moore?

8 Yes, Ms. Tuma.

9 MS. TUMA: Yes. When it comes to the witnesses number P22 and

10 P28, it is correct that those statements have not yet or the identity has

11 not yet been disclosed to the Defence, due to there are highly sensitive

12 witnesses in another case in this Tribunal. And the Prosecution is --

13 will file a motion, an urgent motion, concerning protective measures in

14 that respect.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: And out of the five, original five sensitive

16 witnesses, the delayed disclosure of identity of whom was by our decision

17 of the 9th of March 2005 delayed to 30 days prior to the start of the

18 trial, what's the position about those?

19 MS. TUMA: Yes, Your Honour.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: They were supposed to have been disclosed by the 3rd

21 of September.

22 MS. TUMA: Yes, Your Honour. Those five sensitive witness

23 statements have been disclosed to the Defence today. And the unredacted

24 statements of those five sensitive witnesses have been disclosed earlier.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.

Page 433

1 MS. TUMA: So that is done.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. So that makes it clear, because the

3 confusion in my mind arose out of the statement that you made earlier on,

4 which gave me the impression that there was nothing pending in this area.

5 All right.

6 When do you intend to file this urgent motion for protective

7 measures?

8 MS. TUMA: Yes, Your Honour. We have been in discussion with the

9 Senior Legal Officer earlier on this question, and a date of 15 September

10 has been agreed upon. That is next Wednesday, next week, next Wednesday.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Can you live with that, members of the Defence

12 teams? If there is an opposition, please rise.

13 Yes, Mr. Lukic.

14 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I don't know whether there is a

15 misunderstanding. Either you misunderstood us or we misunderstood you,

16 Your Honour. The issue is that the identity of six witnesses, at this

17 point in time, is still not familiar to us. So this is what my colleague

18 was saying. And as for the rest, the sooner we receive material from the

19 OTP, the better.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: There is absolutely no misunderstanding. In fact,

21 the only confusion as I said that arose in my mind, because from one side

22 I was being given the impression that this matter was still outstanding;

23 on the other hand, I heard Ms. Tapuskovic saying that this morning, or

24 today, the names had been disclosed, et cetera. And so I said: Is it

25 pending or not pending any further? But obviously there is an

Page 434

1 explanation. We're talking of two categories of people here.

2 So I will not impose a deadline. Once you seem to be committed

3 with yourself to file the relative motion by the 15th. However, please,

4 this will need to be monitored by staff. And if there is no filing by the

5 15th, I am to be informed, Mr. Von Hebel. Thank you.

6 Yes. Other disclosure matters. I'll deal first with expert

7 witnesses' reports. I'm told that five -- as I said earlier, five expert

8 witnesses will give evidence for the Prosecution. Three expert reports

9 have been disclosed to the Defence. For the two remaining experts, the

10 English version of the reports, I'm told, will be disclosed on the 10th of

11 September. And the B/C/S version will be disclosed later, but as soon as

12 possible. Do you confirm this? I'm also told, before you confirm it,

13 Mr. Moore, that your team is facing problems with regard to the

14 translation of one of the expert reports, namely, that of Mr. Theunens,

15 due to its voluminous size, and that during this morning's meeting, you -

16 I mean the Prosecution - declared that it would be in a position to

17 provide more detail as to when the translation is to be expected. I don't

18 know if you've had time to think about it and update us in this respect,

19 but perhaps you can deal with this matter of the expert reports, what's

20 outstanding from it, now, if you wish so.

21 MR. MOORE: Dealing with Mr. Theunens, whose report has concluded

22 in first draft, and I anticipate will not require any amendment, he is in

23 the nicest possible way, rather loquacious, and therefore it requires

24 further consideration. The interpretation of it and the translation, I've

25 tried to ascertain exactly when that will be done. We can give the

Page 435

1 English copies at the start of next week, but I'm not able to definitely

2 say when the translations will be done. All I know is, and I hope the

3 Court will accept my undertaking that I will provide the translation as

4 soon as I possibly can, and I know I will be having it marked as urgent,

5 or priority.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: What's the subject matter of his expertise?

7 MR. MOORE: It's command and control in relation to the JNA

8 function and general army matters and it really relates to the core of the

9 case because this is a military case, in substance.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: It definitely needs to be made available in B/C/S to

11 the accused.

12 MR. MOORE: It does, yes.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I thank you.

14 MR. MOORE: I haven't quite finished.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm sorry.

16 MR. MOORE: That's all right. The second relates to

17 General Pringle. That statement is a much shorter statement. The

18 translation for that can be done fairly quickly, and I anticipate and I

19 hope that it will be finished by way of translation by the end of next

20 week.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Moore. I've taken note of that.

22 And Judge Parker will intervene in this matter, if needed, in due course,

23 if there is an undue delay or unexpected delay in making available the

24 B/C/S version of Mr. Theunens's expert report.

25 Yes. Then I'm told there is material from the Dokmanovic

Page 436

1 proceedings, which has been provided to the Defence in the English

2 language. If that is not correct information that I have, please tell me.

3 And that the material from the Milosevic, Slobodan Milosevic proceedings,

4 disclosure is still ongoing, as is the case. All right. Yes,

5 Ms. Tapuskovic.

6 MS. TAPUSKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, your conclusion is

7 correct. This is a protracted case. The Defence, working simultaneously

8 on the pre-trial brief, is searching the Milosevic transcripts on its own,

9 because this has been published on the Tribunal website. We will draw up

10 a list of material we are interested in, which the OTP perhaps will not

11 disclose to us, so that we will request for certain transcripts to be

12 disclosed. For the most part, these are testimonies given in closed

13 session. But we conclude from the previous parts of what these witnesses

14 say that they refer to Vukovar, or the subject matter of this indictment.

15 In our estimation, this will amount to 8.500 to 9.000 pages of transcript,

16 and of course this will require work on the part of both the Defence and

17 the Prosecution, because we don't know whether the entire testimony of

18 these witnesses refers to this indictment or not. But this will require a

19 lot of work, covering a long time, both on the part of the Prosecution and

20 the Defence. Thank you.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Ms. Tapuskovic, and I realise that.

22 And there is also the question of exhibit lists, which arises from

23 the pre-trial documents, brief and accompanying documents that have been

24 filed. For your information, it seems that the Prosecution has filed its

25 list of exhibits on the 29th of August, and although the current list

Page 437

1 contains a proposed 846 exhibits, the Prosecution has stated that it will

2 continue to review its list to reduce it as much as possible. As it

3 stands, the exhibit list is divided into five parts. I don't need to go

4 into this. And I understand that this is a commitment on your part. I

5 also do understand that exhibits come to the surface as the case unfolds

6 and continue to arrive and surface practically until the end of each case

7 here. So that is understandable. But please do try to keep the exhibits,

8 the number of exhibits, to what is essential, but to the bare minimum, as

9 much as possible.

10 I come to Rule 68 disclosure. I would like you to confirm that,

11 as of last Friday, 2nd of September, the Prosecution had forwarded 29

12 batches of disclosed material, including B/C/S versions of the Ovcara, of

13 the Belgrade proceedings. The English version of three transcripts from

14 the Belgrade proceedings was disclosed to the Defence, I'm told, on the

15 1st September. If you disagree with this statement, please speak out now.

16 I am also told that, by my Senior Legal Officer, that the

17 Prosecution has informed him that they have run an ISU search as regards

18 the first 43 witnesses and have disclosed 40 documents, pursuant to Rule

19 68, and that the Prosecution now is in the process of reviewing the search

20 for the remaining witnesses, basically of Witnesses 44 to 84, and will in

21 due course disclose any documents that might surface pursuant to Rule 68.

22 I am also happy to notice that the Prosecution made it clear to

23 Mr. Von Hebel, in the presence of the three Defence teams this morning,

24 that the ISU search that I mentioned already, for the purposes of Rule 68,

25 is being given the highest priority by the Prosecution. I appreciate

Page 438

1 that. That's how it should be, and I thank you for it, Mr. Moore, and

2 your team.

3 I also wish to make it clear that this is also in your best

4 interest, because there may be consequences, as you know, with the

5 possibility or ability to call witnesses for whom Rule 68 disclosure has

6 not been concluded. I'm sure you are as aware of this consequence as I

7 am, and I do not, of course, blame you for giving the matter your highest

8 priority. But I do appreciate the fact that you have acknowledged it and

9 that you have made it clear to our Senior Legal Officer.

10 Duration of the trial. I've discussed also this matter with

11 Judge Parker before I started this Status Conference, also because it's of

12 more concern to him than it is to me. We've made our calculations,

13 basically on the basis of 88 witnesses, of whom 18 possibly could have

14 their testimony produced pursuant to Rule 92 bis. We have an indication

15 that the viva voce witnesses are expected to be examined in roughly 250

16 hours. I'm not going to deal with how many hours are required to examine

17 the Rule 92 bis witnesses. More or less according to the calculations

18 that we have made, my staff and I, and also in consultation with

19 Judge Parker, we're talking of 25 weeks for the Prosecution case to be

20 heard. That would be approximately 125 days. I do encourage you to make

21 your own calculations, and, if my calculations are wrong, to come forward

22 and tell me so.

23 You will recall, those of you who were here present during the

24 last Status Conference, that I tried to impress with you the importance

25 that I attach to the procedure of resorting to agreed facts in --

Page 439












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Page 440

1 pursuant -- sole purpose, pursuant to paragraph H of Rule 65 ter. I do

2 notice that, from the information that Mr. Von Hebel has given me, that

3 there is going to be some kind of consultation soon between the parties on

4 this matter, and that the Prosecution has presented a new list of 12

5 additional facts to the Defence, that the Defence has provided its common

6 position on last Friday, and that you will continue meeting on this topic,

7 and hopefully to come -- bring your discussions to some good fruition

8 before the trial starts. I mean, I'm not going to address it any further,

9 because I have no reason to think that you will not do this.

10 Then, when I thought I had everything prepared for this Status

11 Conference last week, I find on my desk a motion from Mr. Vasic, on behalf

12 of Mrksic. Mr. Vasic, in his motion, expresses the difficulties that he

13 is facing with regard to the appointment of co-counsel and states that he

14 intended to appeal the decision of the Registrar, who refused the proposed

15 co-counsel. I verified that Defence counsel indeed filed its defence

16 motion. This motion was filed on the 2nd of September. And the Trial

17 Chamber is being requested to allow the assignment of Mr. Goran Rodic as

18 co-counsel for his client. Our position is that we are still awaiting for

19 some information to be forthcoming from the Registrar. As I told you

20 before, I will pretty soon be assigning -- passing on my responsibilities

21 as Pre-Trial Judge to Judge Parker, and I think, Mr. Vasic, rather than

22 dwelling on this matter any further, I will just inform you that this is

23 one of the matters that will be dealt with by my successor. But I can

24 also assure you that we are already giving it the -- our utmost attention.

25 Start of the trial. And this is again one area where I thought I

Page 441

1 was coming to you without any problems, and now seeing the date more or

2 less when the trial would have started. And I recognise that after this

3 morning's meeting, we will need to put a little bit of thought, dedicate a

4 little bit of thought to this matter. I will try to explain as much as

5 possible. But again, it will be Judge Parker who will be dealing with

6 this in due course. I have explained also to him that I will try to hand

7 to him as clean a slate as possible, and that is what I am effectively

8 trying to do.

9 You will recall that the Prosecution -- I told you that the

10 Prosecution filed its pre-trial brief on the 29th of August. On the 31st

11 of August, the Pre-Trial Judge, that's me, granted the joint Defence

12 request for extension of time in which to file their pre-trial brief, and

13 I extended it to the 23rd of September, 2005. The idea is to -- or was

14 until recently - we'll have to see whether we'll stick to this or not, but

15 probably we'll have to delay a little bit the start of the trial. It

16 depends on what Judge Parker will decide. The idea was to have a

17 Pre-Trial Conference on Monday, the 3rd of October, and then we will start

18 with the opening statements immediately after and the case proper in as

19 far as presentation of evidence would have started on the 11th of October,

20 2005. These were the preparations that I had put in place, also in

21 conformity with the promise I had made to your clients a long time ago

22 that I would do my utmost to ensure that this case comes to trial as soon

23 as possible.

24 I thought that all my problems for the day had finished until I

25 met Mr. Von Hebel this morning after he had finished with the 65 ter

Page 442

1 meeting, and he informed me that there were some problems that were

2 encountered and that there was a proposition on the part of the Defence,

3 following positions taken by the Prosecution, and outstanding matters,

4 that -- namely, that the Defence would be seeking for the start, the

5 commencement of the trial to be delayed by four or five weeks. I have

6 discussed this with Judge Parker, who is a member of my Trial Chamber and

7 who will, as I said, be the Presiding Judge in the trial. Of course, at

8 the present moment, this remains pending. What I am going to do is that

9 I'm going to fix a time-limit for the Defence teams to file a joint

10 motion, the relative joint motion, and of course at the same time fix a

11 time-limit for the Prosecution response. I'm going to give the Defence

12 team a week from today, hoping that does not create any undue problems to

13 you. And the Prosecution will have ten days from today within which to

14 file a response.

15 I am not giving you the same amount of time, Mr. Moore, for the

16 simple reason that more or less you are already aware of what the problem

17 is and what the reasons are. It's only that the matter will be now dealt

18 with adequately by my successor. I don't think it's really appropriate

19 for me to deal with it myself, when he will be the person who will preside

20 over the trial.

21 So that's the position. I see -- I recognise Mr. Lukic. Yes,

22 Mr. Lukic.

23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. On behalf of all three

24 Defence teams, I have to say a few words to explain why this topic was

25 raised today. I will not burden the record or Your Honour, because I feel

Page 443

1 that at today's 65 ter meeting, both sides presented a number of problems.

2 But I do have to mention something that is important for our clients and

3 us professionally.

4 We, as the Defence, are not to blame for the position we are in

5 now, and this is well known through all the previous 65 ter Conferences

6 and 11 bis proceedings. Today we are divided between two fundamental

7 rights of the accused: The right from 21(4)(b) and the right to have an

8 expeditious trial without undue delay. Our clients have instructed us

9 that they want the proceedings to begin as soon as possible. It is,

10 however, our professional duty to ensure that we carry out our task in a

11 professional manner and be well prepared for the trial.

12 Therefore, we ask you, as the Pre-Trial Judge and the future

13 Presiding Judge, to bear in mind the specific nature of this case. This

14 case deals with an event which occurred over a period of just a few days.

15 About a year before we found about 250 different testimonies in various

16 cases. And unless we are fully familiar with all the statements and

17 testimonies in advance, we will not be able to cross-examine effectively.

18 And this is the only reason, as we will state in our written submission,

19 that we request a delay. When we had the 11 bis hearing, we said we were

20 ready for the start of the trial, but only now have we received the

21 position of the OTP in their brief, and we really have to prepare

22 thoroughly and ensure that our clients have a really fair trial, as

23 guaranteed by all the rules and regulations.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, by all means, Mr. Lukic, and at no time, of

25 course, was I even thinking of hinting that any possible delay that might

Page 444

1 be attributable to you. When I say "you," to your clients or their

2 counsel. What I would like to stress with you and impress with you is

3 just one thing: Make sure that, any motion, you explain the new

4 circumstances that, according to you, may have arisen, and the predicament

5 in which you contend that you find yourselves in, and then it will, of

6 course, be up to Judge Parker to decide, maybe in consultation also with

7 the other two Judges of the Trial Chamber, pre-Trial Chamber, what will

8 happen. I will leave this matter open and it will be dealt with

9 adequately. And I can assure you reasonably after that your motion and

10 the Prosecution response have been filed.

11 Is there any other matter that you would like to raise? I start

12 with the Prosecution, Mr. Moore.

13 MR. MOORE: Yes, there is one topic. It's called e-court, which

14 I'm sure Your Honour is absolutely delighted to deal with at this time. We

15 would like to know whether, in actual fact, e-court is a feasible option

16 in this case. Because clearly, it requires a different type of

17 preparation. Mr. Von Hebel has been extremely helpful about it, but we

18 still are no further to understanding exactly what the decision will be.

19 What I'm worried about is that suddenly, and I don't mean this in any

20 unkind or pejorative way, a decision will be made that there will be

21 e-court, and we have -- already have timed in our preparations for the

22 normal trial and then there are additional timing constraints which may

23 affect the trial as a whole. And may use an English phrase in saying now

24 it's time to grasp the nettle, to say whether, in actual fact, there is

25 going to be e-court here or not.

Page 445

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, I think it's a matter that needs to be

2 decided, not only with regard to this case, but generally speaking. And I

3 think you know, as much as I do, that it is being discussed at the moment.

4 And a decision is in the offing. There are quite a few considerations to

5 be taken and there have been consultations going on, but until there is a

6 decision taken at a higher level that e-court will be implemented, I

7 cannot make an open declaration here in open court that it will be

8 implemented in this case. And even so, it might not be implemented in the

9 full extent or fashion that it has been presented; there may be some

10 changes to it. Again, I don't think I can safely tread on that ground

11 now.

12 If there is an adoption of the system, and it will be put in place

13 also with regard to this case, as one would expect it to be, and if that

14 causes you or, for that matter, and probably more so, the Defence, some

15 time constraints, but initially certainly with the Prosecution, then you

16 ought to bring that to the attention of my successor, because I think it's

17 a very important consideration that needs to be taken before we jump to

18 the conclusion that the trial will definitely start on such-and-such a

19 date.

20 I can't tell you more than that, unfortunately, Mr. Moore, because

21 I'm not in a position to confirm anything beyond what I have stated.

22 MR. MOORE: Might I just make one final submission to Your Honour?

23 I had the dubious pleasure of doing a case in London with e-court

24 facilities. It certainly moves the case on, as far as I remember. I've

25 heard the figure 10 or 15 per cent. But as I say, all I want to do on

Page 446

1 behalf of OTP is to know exactly what it is we're facing, and we really do

2 need answers from someone as soon as possible.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, but I think a decision on e-court will be taken

4 very shortly, probably -- I wouldn't even dare end that-- add days. But

5 it's in the offing, anyway. It's in the offing. But I cannot anticipate

6 what the decision will be or whether the project itself will be maintained

7 as it is in its entirety or whether it will be subject to some changes.

8 Any matters that you would like to raise on the part of the

9 Defence? None. So let's come to the other very important part of the

10 Status Conference.

11 Mr. Mrksic, you heard me state in the beginning of this Status

12 Conference that one of the reasons for summoning or convening such Status

13 Conferences is to see what the situation is as regards your state of

14 detention, whether you have -- you wish to communicate to me anything in

15 relation to your health or any other problems that you may encounter which

16 would require my intervention.

17 THE ACCUSED MRKSIC: [Interpretation] I have been here for three

18 and a half years. I can see that you are familiar with my health. I've

19 had heart problems, as you are aware. My health improved here. I don't

20 know whether it is due to the food or the daily routine at the Detention

21 Unit. But, at any rate, it has improved. Now I can tell you, after

22 having listened to this Status Conference and having listened to Status

23 Conferences of the past three and a half years, it reminded me of a saying

24 that we have that the army is waiting for a chance to run and then runs

25 awaiting something else. You said that this was a military case. And

Page 447

1 I've had a lot of time so far to study the case, but I was unable to do

2 that. I don't have a computer, and I am a man of advanced age. And in my

3 time, we did not use computers very much.

4 Now, in a situation where I have fairly fragile health, and where

5 I have to work very hard in order to go through a large amount of material

6 looking for important bits and pieces, this is something that will fully

7 adversely affect my health. In addition to that, we're now rushing to

8 begin the trial. We want to begin the trial as soon as possible. However,

9 I'm afraid that -- what's going to happen with it. And now you're

10 mentioning this e-court. I'm absolutely unaware of that system. Perhaps

11 that would endanger our right to have a fair trial or to have a trial at

12 all. I hope that the time that is left can be used in a positive way so

13 that we are indeed prepared once the trial begins. As it stands now, we

14 still do not know who the witnesses are going to be, and this is something

15 that deeply concerns me.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Mrksic. I'm sure that Mr. Vasic

17 will assist you in all that you need, and I can assure you that certainly

18 any system adopted here for trial purposes will not be one that will

19 curtail on your rights. It will rather enhance your due process, rights,

20 and those of a fair trial. So you needn't worry about that. There are

21 others, particularly the Judges, that will make sure that the trial that

22 you will receive will be a fair one, in the tradition of this Tribunal.

23 Mr. Radic.

24 THE ACCUSED RADIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, thank you for

25 granting me the opportunity to speak. As far as my health is concerned,

Page 448

1 everything is fine. In addition to that, I have no other complaints

2 concerning the conditions at the Detention Unit. Thank you.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Radic.

4 And Mr. Sljivancanin.

5 THE ACCUSED SLJIVANCANIN: [Interpretation] Your Honour,

6 Mr. President, I have neither questions nor complaints, and I ask that the

7 trial begin as scheduled.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Thank you. So that brings to an end

9 the Status Conference for today. We stand adjourned. And if there is

10 need for a further Status Conference, it will be held, as I said, by Judge

11 Parker and not by me. So as far as this case is concerned, I don't think

12 you will see my face again. Thank you.

13 --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned at

14 4.07 p.m.