Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 12273

1 Monday, 25 September, 2006.

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused, Radic and Sljivancanin enter court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 2.18 p.m.

5 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon.

6 Mr. Vasic.

7 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good

8 afternoon to all. I hope the interpreters can hear me well.

9 Your Honours, I would like to raise an issue. As you've probably

10 noticed my client is not here in the Courtroom with us today. So perhaps

11 it might be a good idea to raise the issue in private session, since this

12 concerns my client's health.

13 JUDGE PARKER: I would think you only need to mention the

14 essential facts, Mr. Vasic. No need to go into details. So I think we

15 can remain in public session. It's important that the public are aware if

16 an accused is not in Court, or not.

17 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. But

18 regrettably I'm not familiar with the detail of the matter. I just

19 received word of this, this afternoon past one o'clock. All I know is

20 that for the time being, Mr. Mrksic's situation does not appear to be

21 critical, but that is all I know about his present condition or the

22 doctor's predictions for that matter. This is not something that I have

23 been informed of.

24 Given the circumstances, I have not had an opportunity to see or

25 meet Mr. Mrksic. All I've been told is that his health is not critical.

Page 12274

1 It's fine compared to what it was. That's about all the detail I have,

2 Your Honour.

3 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Vasic.

4 What has been heard by the Chamber takes the matter a little

5 further. The information we have is that your client was undergoing some

6 planned routine testing and it was found that that testing should be

7 extended further. As he was then at the hospital, it was decided he

8 should remain at the hospital to complete this further testing. And the

9 expectation was that he would be with us tomorrow.

10 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honour, for

11 sharing this with me. This is more than I know. I heard from Mr. Mrksic

12 yesterday in the morning hours and he told me that he would be undergoing

13 medical checks, that were scheduled. Or rather I didn't know about this

14 at all and I was somewhat taken aback when I heard from the hospital today

15 telling me that he had been hospitalized.

16 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Vasic. Well, as you have mentioned,

17 a waiver has been filed, so the proceeding will continue today on that

18 basis.

19 Now you have a witness ready to call, is that correct?

20 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I am ready to call my

21 witness. That much is true. The waiver that you have addressed is not

22 something that I've so far been able to look at. I suppose Mr. Mrksic has

23 been informed of the relevant legal implications of his decision to have

24 the trial continue in his absence. I do suppose that he has had an

25 opportunity to express his own free will by signing the document that

Page 12275

1 Your Honour has referred to. I wasn't there when the document was signed,

2 nor have I seen the document. All I can say is that I'll try to take this

3 in good faith.

4 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic, we know nothing of the circumstances.

5 We know that the document is filed. That is all we know. There has been

6 experience in this trial of waiver by an accused in the trial proceeding

7 in the absence of an accused, so that there is a basis upon which the

8 Chamber can assume, at the moment, that your client is adequately aware of

9 his rights and the effect of a waiver.

10 In those circumstances, it would appear preferable that we should

11 continue. Should it emerge that there is some unforeseen problem about

12 the waiver, we will have to consider that. But that does not seem a

13 likely possibility. So if you would call your witness.

14 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] By all means, Your Honour. Our next

15 witness is Mr. Rade Danilovic.

16 [The witness entered court]

17 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon, sir.

18 THE WITNESS: Good afternoon.

19 JUDGE PARKER: Would you please read out the affirmation that is

20 on the card that is given to you now.

21 RADE DANILOVIC: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth,

22 the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.


24 [Witness answered through interpreter]

25 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Please sit down.

Page 12276

1 Examination by Mr. Vasic:

2 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Vasic.

3 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

4 Q. Can I have the Usher's assistance, please. I would like to

5 distribute sets of documents to all the parties; documents we'll be using

6 today. Part of the set is a hard copy of the war and operations log of

7 the 80th Brigade and the LAD PVO order.

8 You can put that aside for the time being, sir. We'll be using

9 that later on. Thank you very much. I hope all copies have been

10 distributed.

11 Good afternoon, sir. Can you please state your full name for the

12 record?

13 A. Good afternoon. My name is Rade Danilovic.

14 Q. Can you tell us about your educational background, and where did

15 you start with the JNA.

16 A. Well, in addition to secondary school, I completed a military

17 academy and the command staff tactical school. I served in Selj [phoen]

18 and Maribor, for as long as about 19 years, after which I got a transfer

19 to Kragujevac where I stayed throughout. I spent some time at the front

20 in Republika Srpska.

21 Q. Mr. Danilovic, I do have to ask you something.

22 A. Go ahead, please.

23 Q. You speak the same language as I do. And please make a pause

24 after each of my questions before you embark on your answer in order to

25 allow the interpreters sufficient time to interpret first the question and

Page 12277

1 then your answer. Only what remains in the transcript is the record of

2 this trial.

3 I think the best thing to do, the best course of action to take

4 would be for you to follow the cursor on the monitor in front of you.

5 When you see a sentence end, when you see my question end, please start

6 your answer. That perhaps might be the best idea. Another thing I would

7 like to ask you is, when you speak, please speak at the same pace that I'm

8 speaking now, so that the interpreters are allowed sufficient time to

9 interpret your answers in their entirety, otherwise we'll be losing

10 portions of the transcript.

11 A. Thank you very much. Sir.

12 Q. You say you served in Slovenia as an officer. Up until which year

13 specifically and where exactly was that? What were your positions as an

14 officer? Your posts?

15 A. [Realtime transcript read in error "Q."] In addition to being

16 company commander, a position which I held for about eight years, the last

17 positions I had in the division was as second in command operations

18 officer, that was in 1990, before all the well known developments. On or

19 about the 7th of October, there was an order from Belgrade from the

20 personnel department, ordering my transfer to Kragujevac. I had to travel

21 through Austria Hungary. I'd been ordered to report to the Sabac garrison

22 after which I was told that I would be going to Kragujevac. I was

23 supposed to take up the post of Chief of Staff of the 80th Motorised

24 Brigade once I got there.

25 Q. Thank you very much, sir. Again, can you just please hold a

Page 12278

1 second after each of my questions, and one correction for the transcript.

2 The witness's last answer, the record says question whereas in reality it

3 was an answer, and that was because you were off the mark too fast, sir.

4 Sir, you say you had to travel through Austria. Why did you take

5 that route on your way to Kragujevac and who was the commander of the 80th

6 Motorised Brigade, the unit that you just referred to at the time you

7 arrived in Kragujevac and reported to start your service as Chief of

8 Staff.

9 A. I was compelled to travel through Austria and Hungary, given that

10 all the communications to Belgrade, at least for us officers at that point

11 in time -- other rather it wasn't possible for me to reach Sabac and that

12 is why I decided to travel through Austria and Hungary; that seemed the

13 safest route to take. Once I arrived, and I think this was on the 10th of

14 October, 1991, I arrived in Kragujevac, Colonel Rakic told me that I had

15 been appointed to serve as the Chief of Staff of the 80th Motorised

16 Brigade. He said the brigade had already been mobilised, and that I was

17 to report to the Captain, to the commander lieutenant-colonel Vojnovic at

18 Domatino [phoen] Polje, near Divcibare; this is a military training

19 ground.

20 On the 10th of October, I reported to the commander, to start work

21 there as Chief of Staff of the 80th Motorised Brigade, the position that

22 I'd been appointed to.

23 Q. Thank you, sir. As for Commander Vojnovic, did you know him

24 before your arrival in Kragujevac?

25 A. I knew Lieutenant Colonel Vojnovic from my time in Slovenia. He

Page 12279

1 at one time perhaps served in Slovenska Bistrica, in the garrison in

2 Slovenska Bistrica while I was in Selj, and later, between 1987 and 1991,

3 I served in the Maribor garrison.

4 Q. In your capacity as Chief of Staff of the 80th Brigade, you

5 continued to be a member of the command, right? Did you perhaps learn

6 about Mr. Vojnovic's duties while he was in Slovenia and did he have any

7 sort of military specialty, a special field of activity while he was

8 there?

9 A. I think he was an MP company commander. I also think that later

10 he became the commander of a Partisan Brigade, but I'm not positive. And

11 I'm not 100 per cent certain, just to be quite honest. We knew each other

12 from large-scale officers' meetings, from briefings, from conferences in

13 the JNA hall in Maribor, that sort of thing.

14 Q. You say you arrived from the Motorised Brigade in 1980 and were

15 part of its command back in 1991. Can you tell us whether this brigade,

16 like its command, was trained to secure persons and facilities? Was it

17 properly trained to carry out assignments like that, assignments of that

18 nature?

19 A. A lot of effort had been made to properly train both privates and

20 officers for both combat operations and any other assignments typically

21 carried out by Motorised Brigades in other similar units, which included

22 providing security for persons and buildings, facilities. It was a

23 well-known fact that the brigade was properly and sufficiently trained to

24 carry out assignments of this nature.

25 Q. Thank you. Tell us about the brigade's composition back in 1991

Page 12280

1 when the assignment arrived to go to the Vukovar front. Did it have any

2 MP units, military police units, if so, what kind?

3 A. The 80th Brigade had a military police company, comprised of

4 military police company. Normally all brigades have more or less the same

5 sort of composition and all brigades normally comprise a military police

6 company.

7 Q. At one point in time did your brigade receive anything from the

8 24th Corps, an additional unit comprising MP officers?

9 A. During the fighting in Vukovar the command of the 80th Motorised

10 Brigade was reinforced with the military police company from the corps

11 battalion of the military police, belonging to the 24th Kragujevac Corps.

12 Q. When the brigade received the assignment to go to the Vukovar

13 front, what was the ethnic make up of the 80th Motorised Brigade?

14 A. Based on my recollection, and it has been a long time, it has been

15 15 years, I think I can say that the brigade was multi-ethnic. The

16 commander of the 105-millimetre HAD was Franjo Ekart, who I believe was an

17 ethnic Croat. Then there was Jan Mancek, a Slovak.

18 The chief of the medical corps, his name escapes me right now, but

19 I know that he, too, was an ethnic Croat. And there were other

20 ethnicities involved. So the brigade was a multi-ethnic one. That's one

21 thing I can say with a great degree of certainty.

22 Q. What about this multi-ethnic makeup of the brigade, did that

23 change before you set out for Vukovar?

24 A. How should I put this? The make up may have changed, but the

25 changes were negligible, depending on the numbers of recruits responding

Page 12281

1 to the last military call up, the last mobilisation call up.

2 Q. What about all of these officers you mentioned a while ago as

3 being non-Serbs, did they join the brigade on its way to Vukovar?

4 A. I think they were all off with the brigade to Vukovar with the

5 exception of one officer from the medical corps, I think his name was

6 Vinko, but I can't quite remember the reason behind him not going. I

7 can't remember the reason he didn't join us on the way to Vukovar. I

8 really can't say.

9 Q. Thank you, sir. Do you remember pursuant to whose order and when

10 the 80th Motorised Brigade was finally off to the Vukovar front?

11 A. I didn't see this specific order, but the brigade commander must

12 have. The order was received from the command of the 24th Kragujevac

13 corps which I suppose had, in turn, received the order to ensure the

14 brigade's involvement through the command of the 1st Military District. I

15 think that was the procedure that ought to have been applied.

16 Q. Thank you. We heard about several rounds of mobilisation from

17 previous witnesses, as far as this unit was concerned. I'm going to talk

18 about the third round, which is when the unit finally left for Vukovar.

19 Early November 1991, did the entire unit go or just parts of the

20 unit, just certain elements?

21 A. Due to the well-known problems involving certain parties that

22 affected in a very powerful way the mood and the morale of the men

23 belonging to the brigade, the brigade could not be introduced to the

24 Vukovar front as a whole. For this reason, the third round, the third

25 mobilisation round was away to introduce the brigade in successive stages,

Page 12282

1 that is why the battalions and divisions were mobilised in order to bring

2 them into the theatre at war. It was either on the 30th or on the 31st of

3 October, 1991 that I went there with the 1st Motorised Battalion which at

4 the time was led by Captain Susa. He was the battalion commander at the

5 time.

6 Later on, other elements and other units belonging to the brigade

7 were mobilised and, roughly speaking, by the 10th of November I think they

8 had all been brought in, or rather brought to the area where the 80th

9 Motorised Brigade was performing operations.

10 Q. We'll be looking at a number of documents addressing this issue,

11 but first of all, let me ask you this. You mentioned the 1st Motorised

12 Battalion, you mentioned your own departure on the 30th or 31st of

13 October, 1991.

14 Which area, exactly, did the battalion go to? And whose area of

15 responsibility was that?

16 A. The 1st Motorised Battalion of the 80th Motorised Brigade was

17 resubordinated to the Novi Sad Corps, we arrived in the Klis village area

18 or Klis village sector, and I can't quite remember the specific units that

19 it joined in the attack on Luzac village, but one thing I do know is the

20 battalion was with me, because I was there with the commander of the first

21 battalion. That was from the north. That was to the north of Vukovar and

22 that's where their involvement began. That's where Luzac village was.

23 Later on, the battalion continued attacks from the north on

24 Vukovar, Vukovar's downtown area.

25 Q. Thank you. You said the remaining elements of the 80th Motorised

Page 12283

1 Brigade arrived in the broader Vukovar area you say by the 10th of

2 November, 1991. Did this remaining part of the Motorised Brigade go all

3 together? Or did they split up with separate elements arriving?

4 A. These remaining elements belonging to the brigade were brought in,

5 in portions, so to speak. There could have been two division, a

6 battalion-level unit, for example, or one of the staff units. But they

7 were brought in, in stages, as it were, to the area where the brigade was

8 deployed.

9 Q. Thank you. Can we have Exhibit 1D27 brought up on our screens,

10 the ERN is 0D 000284.

11 In the hand-outs that I distributed it is under 7, toward the end.

12 At the end of that handout with the green tabs. Mr. Danilovic, what does

13 this order mean? Can you tell us?

14 A. This is the order of the command of the 1st Army District, which

15 was received by the command of the 24th Kragujevac Corps, that a platoon

16 of ABC protection pioneer battalion and a support battalion of the 80th

17 Motorised Brigade from the garrison of Smederevo [phoen], should start

18 their march in the direction of Smederevo, Beograd, and Niksic, Negoslavci

19 and join the rest of the brigade.

20 Q. Tell me when, on the basis of this order, the march was supposed

21 to start, the march of these elements of the 80th Motorised Brigade that

22 you mentioned and when were they supposed to arrive in the sector of

23 Vukovar?

24 A. According to this order, this march should have begun at 800 hours

25 on November 10th, 1991, and the starting point is Smederevo barracks. I

Page 12284

1 was then around the village of Luzac with the 1st Motorised Battalion,

2 that is north of Vukovar.

3 Q. Yes. I know where you were. You had told us so. But I asked you

4 when the march was supposed to begin according to this order and when the

5 units, including the support units of the battalion were supposed to

6 arrive at Vukovar, at the area of Vukovar.

7 A. I cannot see any mention of these support units. Oh, yes, I'm

8 sorry. By November 10th the support battalion should also have been

9 there, deployed around the village of Sotin, I think, I apologise.

10 Q. I think that is clear enough. It's said in the first sentence.

11 A. Yes, it's, it slipped my mind. I failed to notice. I apologise.

12 Q. I propose to tender this order into evidence.

13 JUDGE PARKER: Which tab did you say it was?

14 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] The last tab, tab 27 in this series.

15 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. I heard -- apparently misheard. I

16 thought you had said "7," and I had got lost. We will receive tab 27.

17 THE REGISTRAR: That's exhibit 775, Your Honours.

18 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

19 Q. Let me now ask you, Mr. Danilovic, whether the 80th Motorised

20 Brigade included LAD PVO Artillery Battalion while the brigade was

21 deployed at the Vukovar front.

22 A. The LAD PVO of the 80th Motorised Brigade was part of the brigade

23 all the time. Occasionally, possibly a platoon or a battery of that

24 artillery battalion may have been assigned to other units to reinforce

25 Operational Group South. But as much time has passed, I cannot recollect

Page 12285

1 for sure.

2 I do know, however, that LAD PVO was not resubordinated to other

3 units in the area covered by OG South.

4 Q. Thank you. Tell me, from who did the commander of the LAD PVO

5 battalion, while it was parts of the 80th Motorised Brigade around Vukovar

6 received his orders?

7 A. The commander of LAD PVO, exclusively received his orders from the

8 commander of the 80th Motorised Brigade, which is clear due to the

9 formational structure. However, if a part of this battalion was assigned

10 to support other units, then the commander would receive relevant orders

11 from his commander to redeploy parts of his -- parts of that artillery

12 battalion.

13 Q. Thank you. As the head of staff, you -- and I'm now speaking in

14 principle -- which were your tasks in the 80th Motorised Brigade?

15 A. The head of staff is a deputy -- is a deputy commander while the

16 commander is absent. This is clear from the information. And now I don't

17 think it is unnecessary to list all the persons that were members of the

18 staff of the brigade, but the Chief of Staff or head of staff advises the

19 commander on the deployment of the brigade. And he is the commander of

20 the staff units of the brigade.

21 Q. Thank you. As Chief of Staff you were well acquainted with the

22 situation inside the unit while you were with the command of the 80th

23 brigade, about the elements were part of the brigade, which elements were

24 resubordinated. You were in a position to know that as Chief of Staff.

25 A. Yes, I had to know that, and I did know that. But from October

Page 12286

1 30th or 31st, 1991 until my arrival at the command of the brigade, I did

2 not have knowledge of that kind because I had not yet joined the brigade

3 proper.

4 So for some 15 days or so, I was absent from there so that I'm not

5 acquainted with the events during at that time. But when I arrived at the

6 command of the brigade, I was partly acquainted with the events from the

7 previous period, for the most important ones.

8 Q. I propose that we now look at Exhibit 371, which is an operational

9 log of the 80th Motorised Brigade. We have already looked at that log.

10 Since the witness has a hard copy of the document in front of him, we

11 could probably look at the English version of that document on our

12 screens. It's D 000635. The entry refers to November 10th, 11.50, 11

13 hours 50 minutes. I will now read it out, Mr. Danilovic, and then ask you

14 for your comment. It says: "The commander of LAD PVO and the head of

15 PVO report. One, conscript wounded. From the second battery, 20/3

16 millimeters. The name is Jadranko, son of Milko, from Arandjelovac, and

17 was admitted to the hospital of OG South.

18 Tell me, as Chief of Staff, whether, in accordance with the rules

19 of war, a unit that was resubordinated to another unit was supposed to

20 report to its original brigade about such an event.

21 A. If a unit that was part of our brigade was resubordinated to

22 another unit, it must report to that other unit about its combat readiness

23 and possible problems that may have arisen. It is possible and desirable

24 also to report to its original unit or command, but it is not mandatory.

25 Q. Let us continue with this log. November 13th, 1300 hours. We can

Page 12287

1 look at the English version again. Page 0D 000636.

2 Sir, please take a look at this entry. It says: LAD PVO,

3 commander, report. It is necessary to -- we didn't understand the

4 speaker. We missed communications equipment and shelter equipment. Is

5 this a request for logistical support?

6 A. From the -- that log entry it follows that the commander of LAD

7 PVO requests the -- this equipment to be provided, and that is logical as

8 the unit is an element of the brigade.

9 Q. Yes. You said it was logical because a unit is an element of the

10 brigade.

11 I will now suggest to take a brief look at the next page, the

12 entry for 1700 hours on November 14th, on the next page. The English

13 translation of that page is 0D 000637.

14 This says: "So far, regular combat reports have arrived from the

15 following units: Headquarters, administration, the military police

16 company, the ABC Protection Platoon, the Communications Company, LAD PVO,

17 HAD 105, NPOAD and the 3rd Motorised Battalion."

18 Tell me, please whose duty is it to submit regular reports to the

19 command of the 80th Motorised Brigade?

20 A. Regular combat reports are submitted by all battalion commanders

21 and the commanders of independent units likewise report to the head of

22 staff on the situation in their units at the end of the day. That can be

23 at 1700 hours or at 1800 hours. This depends on the command of the -- the

24 order of the brigade commander so that he may, then, forward that to the

25 his superiors.

Page 12288

1 Q. Does that refer to the commanders of the units that are part of

2 the 80th Brigade or other units, too?

3 A. This applies to all units that are a part of the 80th Motorised

4 Brigade.

5 Q. Thank you. Could we now see the entry dated November 15th, 1991.

6 1700 hours. The English translation is on page 0 D 000637 -- sorry. 638.

7 This says: "On review viewing the regular reports that were sent

8 in by the 3rd Motorised Brigade, NPOAD, HAD, 105, LAD PVO, the Motor

9 Police Company, and the ABC Defence Platoon, it can be concluded that

10 there were no casualties in these units. Some of them were active ..."

11 and so on.

12 Is this entry also a regular combat report from the units that are

13 part of the 80th Motorised Brigade?

14 A. Yes. It is clear that these regular reports were received from

15 subordinate units to the 80th Brigade.

16 Q. I would now like to refer to another entry of that same day,

17 November 15th, 1991, but at 2000 -- 20 hours and ten minutes, page 639 in

18 the English translation.

19 Mr. Danilovic, could you please comment the entry in the

20 operational log. 20 hours, 10 minutes.

21 "From the Mala Dubrava, Ovcara and Bokovci sectors, massive fire

22 was open from infantry weapons, as well as from anti-aircraft guns. I

23 warned the commanding officer not to open fire unless necessary.

24 Everything calmed down by 2230 hours."

25 Which unit was active there and who commanded to cease fire? Can

Page 12289

1 you tell us, based on this entry?

2 A. Fire was opened. The units that were deployed in Mala Dubrava,

3 Ovcara, and Bokovci, those were the units that opened fire, and it is

4 logical --

5 Q. What kind of weapons were used on that occasion?

6 A. But this says that infantry weapons were used as well as

7 anti-aircraft guns, this is what the operational log says.

8 Q. Can you tell us which units that were part of the 80th Motorised

9 Brigade had anti-aircraft guns?

10 A. Well, firstly, the LAD PVO had such guns. I cannot remember now,

11 probably the armoured battalion also had some and possibly some other

12 units, but I would need some time to think about it, to recollect.

13 The infantry battalions such as the LAR platoon of PVO, I can't

14 remember precisely, but I -- but several units had anti-aircraft guns.

15 Q. Let us now look at the entry dated November 16th at 700 hours, 0D

16 000639 is the English page, the page of the English translation. It

17 says: "After last night's intensive fire, the second half of the night

18 was relatively calm. We had communications with all units in the wire

19 communication system. Except for the LAD PVO. That link was down during

20 the night."

21 And the next entry for 9 hours 20 minutes on the same page is also

22 linked to that.

23 "I was informed that communications with the LAD PVO were

24 established after a team went out to the field."

25 Tell me, Mr. Danilovic, do these entries mean that the command of

Page 12290

1 the 80th Motorised Brigade had communication at all times with the LAD

2 PVO, except during the time when the link was down?

3 A. Yes. They had come -- they could communication with each other.

4 There were occasional problems with the communications, though. How do I

5 put this? If there is a wire link and the wire is broken, possibly when a

6 vehicle runs over it or for other reasons, such occasions did occur, but

7 were remedied as soon as possible.

8 It is obvious that we could communicate with LAD PVO, except for

9 occasional blackouts.

10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Danilovic. Did you, at any moment, come to the

11 command of the 80th Motorised Brigade from the motorised battalion, and

12 how long did you stay there, if you did?

13 A. As far as I remember, on November the 15th or the 16th I arrived

14 at the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade at Negoslavci, and from that

15 day until January 22nd, 1992, I was at the command of the 80th Motorised

16 Brigade without interruption.

17 Q. After arriving at the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade, were

18 you in the position to access the data about the number of soldiers in

19 that brigade and, what was the strength of that brigade when it was fully

20 manned?

21 A. The strength of the 80th Motorised Brigade and its wartime

22 formation is, I think, 4950, or 4920 men; thereabouts. After the last

23 mobilisation, I think that the brigade was 3600 conscripts strong. I

24 cannot say that for absolutely certain, but I think that the strength of

25 the brigade was thereabouts after the last mobilisation.

Page 12291

1 Q. Tell me, please, upon your arrival at the command of the 80th

2 Motorised Brigade, did you actively join the work of the command as Chief

3 of Staff, and did you carry out all of the functions normally attributed

4 or assigned to the Chief of Staff, because up until that time you were out

5 in the field.

6 A. When I arrived, there was a lot of work awaiting me there, since I

7 was absent for quite a while from the brigade command. Thus I had to take

8 care of some of the tasks which were not strictly necessary. I still had

9 to do them and I had to check them to make sure that all of the

10 documentation that is mandatory in wartime was properly kept and

11 maintained. In addition to that, I had to familiarise myself with the

12 most important activities in the preceding 50 months of the involvement of

13 the brigade. Therefore, it was very demanding, the work that I had to do,

14 and there was very little time for me to rest.

15 Q. Thank you. You mentioned some of the documents, the records that

16 are kept in the brigade command. I suppose that among those documents is

17 the war log, an operations log. Please tell me, who was in charge of

18 that, and who monitored the entries made in these documents?

19 A. The documents at the brigade command, such as the operations log

20 and war log book are maintained by an operations officer under the command

21 of the Chief of Staff who just like -- who as chief of the operations

22 organ with the -- within the command know about all the information that

23 is entered into these very important wartime documents.

24 For example, the war log book is permanently archived in the

25 archives of the superior commands.

Page 12292

1 Q. Tell me, please, who made entries in the war log book of the 80th

2 Motorised Brigade while you were in Vukovar in 1991?

3 A. Well, this was done by the officers from the operations organ,

4 such as Captain Premovic, Teldasijevic [phoen], and other operations

5 officers. There were four or five of them. I'm not quite sure right now,

6 but four or five of them. And they were in charge of these two diaries.

7 They made entries.

8 Q. Mr. Premovic, can you tell us something about him, who was he what

9 was had I his training and how was he trained?

10 A. Captain Premovic is a reserve officer. I don't remember whether

11 he was a Captain or Captain first class, but I think that he did this job

12 conscientious. As far as I can remember he was an engineer and he used to

13 work in a factory called Zastava, whether he works there to this day I

14 don't know because I haven't had any contact with him for quite a long

15 time. As for him, I can say that he was a very responsible, meticulous

16 person. Now, whether he had the best possible training in terms of

17 operations work, I don't know. But at any rate he did his best in order

18 to carry out all of the assignments given to him in the most conscientious

19 and responsible manner.

20 Q. Did he complete the school for reserve officers and did he have to

21 go frequently to additional training courses or manoeuvres in order to

22 become Captain first class?

23 A. As far as I'm aware, he is a reserve officers. He graduated from

24 the school for reserve officers. All of the officers of the command of

25 the brigade normally go once or twice and some go even more often, once or

Page 12293

1 twice a year, to attend what we called applied forms of training from

2 various exercises to war simulation exercises, especially for staff tasks,

3 which is the highest form of training for a senior officers and those

4 belonging to commands.

5 Q. Tell me, please, whether Major Jankovic also worked with the

6 documents and tell me if you know this man.

7 A. Major Jankovic was the chief of operations organ and the only

8 active officer within the operations organ. I can tell you that he was a

9 good officer and that he did these tasks properly if I can say so.

10 Q. Could we now -- could we now see another exhibit, please, which is

11 the war log book of the 80th Brigade, 375. You have the hard copy before

12 you. Could we have the English version on the screen, please. Could we

13 see the entry for the 9th of November, at 2000 hours, which is page 0D

14 000571 in the English version.

15 The entry here is 2100 hours, and LAD Artillery Battalion. Could

16 we actually scroll down. We need the -- no, actually up. Could you

17 scroll up. That's fine. That's fine. Where it says 2100 hours. It says

18 as follows:

19 "PVO LAD with two batteries, 20/3, is deployed in the Dubrava

20 sector, and battery 30/2 in the Vucedol - Vukovar sector," correct?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. What does this entry mean?

23 A. It says here what the deployment of the LAD PVO was and this

24 battery, 30/2 was deployed in the Vucedol sector so this was the

25 deployment of the artillery battalion in terms of its batteries. At 2100

Page 12294

1 hours on the 9th of November, 1991.

2 Q. You say that it actually reflects the deployment of two PVO

3 artillery battalions or rather their batteries. Which units did they

4 belong to?

5 A. This was within the composition of the brigade. I don't see that

6 they were resubordinated to anybody else, because that's what it says here

7 in this war log book.

8 Further down below, you see other units, HAD 105 and other units,

9 staff units within the 80th Motorised Brigade.

10 Q. I would like, now, to see the entry for the 10th of November at

11 1800 hours, which is page 74662. 1825. It says here: "LAD PVO is

12 operating pursuant to the plan, and combat tasks of the OG South." And

13 then next to it, it says: "Permanent tasks, or ongoing tasks."

14 Can you tell us what kind of tasks these were? Permanent or

15 ongoing combat tasks which were carried out in this particular case by LAD

16 PVO, but this also pertained to other units within the 80th Motorised

17 Brigade.

18 A. The command of the brigade, the command of the 80th Motorised

19 Brigade received an order in relation to the PVO as part of a additional,

20 supplemental order within OG South where it is specified precisely which

21 PVO formations are to participate in the anti-aircraft defence within the

22 combat disposition of OG South, whose part the 80th Motorised Brigade was

23 as well.

24 Thus, this particular order pertains to the LAD PVO of the 80th

25 Motorised Brigade in order to ensure unified engagement of all PVO units

Page 12295

1 and the most efficient use of those units for anti-aircraft defence

2 purposes.

3 Ongoing or permanent tasks are defined in combat rules of the

4 artillery battalion of the PVO as well as other combat rules on

5 engagement of PVO resources. Ongoing tasks represent protection of

6 facilities, weaponry, elements of combat disposition, those which are most

7 vulnerable.

8 The command of the brigade or the chief of the PVO within the 80th

9 Motorised Brigade also had to write down, within the operations organ, an

10 order for PVO and forward it to the commander of the LAD PVO of the 80th

11 Motorised Brigade.

12 Q. If I were to tell you that this order for PVO protection or PVO

13 defence specified that the logistics support of the LAD Artillery

14 Battalion of the 80th Motorised Brigade on the 11th of November was to be

15 conducted in OG South, and after that -- after the 18th of November it was

16 to be carried out within the rear of the 80th Motorised Brigade, could you

17 tell me what the reasons would be for such an order? Where was the rear

18 of the 80th Motorised Brigade at that time?

19 A. Before the 11th of November, 1991, the Logistics Battalion was on

20 the move towards the sector of its deployment, that is to say from

21 Smederevo to the village of Sotin, that is to say that the LAD PVO in

22 relation to logistic support had to rely on the logistical structures of

23 OG South. That was the only reason. I really don't see that there would

24 be a different reason, nor do I know of a different reason.

25 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, is this a good time for

Page 12296

1 our break?

2 JUDGE PARKER: We will resume at five minutes to four, Mr. Vasic.

3 --- Recess taken at 3.32 p.m.

4 --- On resuming at 4.00 p.m.

5 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Vasic.

6 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

7 Q. I'm trying to move around the mics so that everybody can hear me

8 better. And as for you, Mr. Danilovic, could you move away from the

9 microphone a little bit, please, for the sake of interpreters.

10 A. No problem.

11 Q. This courtroom is quite difficult. They have hard time hearing

12 us. Thank you. I would like to continue with my examination.

13 Mr. Danilovic, let us look at the entry in the operations diary,

14 Exhibit 375. The date is 16th of November, time 1650. This is page 7 of

15 the English text -- no, I apologise. No. This is Exhibit 371, page 7 of

16 the English text. And as for you, you have the hard copy before you.

17 Exhibit 371. Page 7 of the English translation.

18 The entry made on the 16th of November, at 1650 hours. Mr.

19 Danilovic, it says here: "From the 1st Motorised Battalion, Lieutenant

20 Colonel Rade Danilovic returned and reported to the brigade commander on

21 the situation in the 1st Motorised Battalion. The battalion is constantly

22 in combat in the Luzac sector. They had fatalities and the wounded ..."

23 Do you remember this?

24 A. Just a second. Let me please find this.

25 Q. This is the operations log. Not the war log.

Page 12297

1 A. I apologise. I apologise. I had the war log in front of me.

2 Forgive me.

3 Q. No, no, the operations log book. 16th of November at 1650 hours.

4 A. Yes, yes, correct.

5 Q. So did you come back at this time on this date as is entered here?

6 And did you report to the commander on the situation in the first

7 battalion?

8 A. Yes. Correct. On that date, I returned from the 1st Motorised

9 Battalion and I reported to the brigade commander on the situation in the

10 battalion and on the losses. I can't remember, and I'm telling you this

11 honestly, I can't remember the number of those who were killed and

12 wounded. I know that there were both categories during combat when this

13 battalion was engaged. In combat from the Djergaj forest towards the

14 village of Luzac.

15 Q. Thank you. Now, could we turn to the next date, the 17th of

16 November, once again, Exhibit 371, the entry made at 1800 hours. In

17 English it is page 8.

18 Thank you. In this entry, it says: "Commander of the 80th

19 Motorised Brigade decided. Continue the operations of the third motorised

20 battalion, reach the Vuka river and prevent the enemy from withdrawing

21 from the northern part of Vukovar. Town of Vukovar. By means of

22 engagement of the HAD and LAD PVO, support the breaking up of enemy forces

23 in the northern part of Vukovar, establishing the most favourable

24 conditions for the final liberation of Vukovar."

25 Is that what it says in the operations log, and was this the order

Page 12298

1 of the commander of the 80th Brigade issued to commanders of the 3rd

2 Motorised Battalion HAD and LAD PVO of the 80th Motorised Brigade?

3 A. Yes, that's correct. That's exactly how it was. This is how

4 these three units were engaged in carrying out this portion of the combat

5 order.

6 Q. Thank you. Please tell me, Mr. Danilovic, are you aware of the

7 handover of the area of responsibility which took place between the 80th

8 Partisan Brigade and the 80th Motorised Brigade?

9 A. Yes, I was, as Chief of Staff, and I was duty bound to know this.

10 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter'S correction. 20th Partisan

11 Brigade.

12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation].

13 Q. Please tell me, you as Chief of Staff, can you describe to us how

14 a handover of the area of responsibility is carried out, so there are

15 commands of two brigades which both find themselves within the area of

16 responsibility of OG South?

17 A. The handover of the area of responsibility is carried out on the

18 terrain, so that the outgoing unit leaves and the new unit arrives. The

19 commanders at all levels have to be informed in detail about the

20 disposition of the unit on the ground, so that those who are leaving,

21 while leaving the area of combat disposition of the unit, have to be

22 informed down to the last level, to the level of a squad, about the

23 situation in that territory.

24 The outgoing unit, its commander rather, has to inform the new

25 commander in great detail as to where their support, equipment support

Page 12299

1 weapons were deployed, and so on, as well as all details about the combat

2 disposition of the unit, and what is most important, the information about

3 the enemy and enemy units in that area. This means that the old commander

4 is duty-bound to inform the new commander, in great detail, of all of

5 these particulars and also issue an order on how the units are to be used

6 in this area of responsibility.

7 Q. Thank you. Could we now see Exhibit 418. ERN 04672869. That's

8 in B/C/S. And as for English, it should be 04672869 to 2871. Thank you.

9 Can we see the bottom of the page, please. This is a daily combat report

10 for the 19th of November, OG South, and in the last paragraph it says:

11 Pursuant to your order, strictly confidential, number 1614/82-60, dated

12 the 7th of November, 1991, commander of OG South, in his order, strictly

13 confidential number 349-1, specifies the following local commands or town

14 commands.

15 Could we now see the next page on this document, please, which is

16 page 04672870. Would you please look at item 3, village of Ovcara,

17 Jakubovac, Grabovo, Lieutenant Colonel Misovic [phoen] Slobodan, and

18 following his leading of the area of responsibility of OG South,

19 Lieutenant Colonel Milorad Vojnovic is appointed. Do you remember this

20 particular situation and when this took place?

21 A. I can't remember the exact situation. I know that there was a

22 handover of area of responsibility and that it was precisely along these

23 lines, as stipulated in this order. But I can't remember all of the

24 details, because it's been 15 years. I know that this order was

25 implemented in its entirety, it was complied with in its entirety. And

Page 12300

1 there was nothing contentious about it, but I can't remember the precise

2 details of the handover of area of responsibility. All I know is that

3 this order was complied with.

4 Q. Could we now look at another entry regarding the 80th Brigade. I

5 would like to see whether you remember this. In item 4, in the last

6 paragraph on this page, on this page before us, it says: "In the course

7 of the day tactical group of the 105th Motorised Brigade entered the

8 composition of OG South with 450 men which was resubordinated to the 80th

9 Motorised Brigade." Do you remember that?

10 A. Yes, I remember that very well. Lieutenant Colonel Jovic was the

11 commander of the 195th tactical group and he reported to Colonel --

12 Lieutenant Colonel Vojnovic, to receive assignment from him, and that's

13 when we met. His operations officer copied the work map and the

14 disposition of the units of the 80th Motorised Brigade so that this

15 tactical group could be engaged in carrying out the tasks of the 80th

16 Motorised Brigade.

17 It was normal for the commander of this tactical group to know, in

18 full, the combat disposition of the unit that he was joining.

19 Q. Thank you very much. Bearing in mind what we've been saying about

20 local commands, or town commands, can you please look at a different

21 document now, this is on the 65 ter list. It is ID 02 and the ERN is 0D

22 000466. The English is 0467. That's the first document in the set of

23 documents that was distributed at the start of day.

24 This is an order that Commander Vojnovic signed. What exactly

25 does it say, if you could please comment for our benefit, sir.

Page 12301

1 A. This is an order by the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade

2 regulating the respective authorities in terms of local commands or

3 villages or settlements. In this case, it's the commander of the

4 logistics battalion, but rather he hereby appointed him commander of Sotin

5 village, Captain First Class Nemanja Jankovic, his own deputy, and

6 Sergeant Dragan Todorovic as a member of the command, thereby setting up a

7 local command for Sotin village where the logistics battalion of the 80th

8 Motorised Brigade was stationed.

9 Item 2 regulates their respective responsibilities. Do you want

10 me to comment on that too in terms of the local command?

11 Q. Please be so kind as to tell us what exactly the local commands

12 are supposed to do based on this order?

13 A. Local commanders or the commanders of these villages were ordered

14 to organise proper authorities in keeping with the rules of the armed

15 forces, and provisions governing the service in barracks and garrisons.

16 They were also ordered to take all measures to prevent any incursions by

17 sabotage or terrorist groups or any terrorist action.

18 If you look at item 2 it says: Draw up appropriate instructions

19 for work and ensure normal conditions for the life and work of the local

20 population. It is of paramount importance to foil any mistreatment

21 against the local population, or any unauthorized entry and search of

22 flats and houses.

23 Q. Mr. Danilovic, can you just tell me one thing. This portion that

24 is in reference to the rules of service in barracks and garrisons, you say

25 that is part of this order. What I want to know is, based on these rules

Page 12302

1 of service, who is it that defines the rules of detention at a local

2 command? Who defines the necessary security measures?

3 A. That is down to the local commander, the commander of a town or

4 village, whoever is tasked with carrying out these assignments. They must

5 set a place of detention and sort everything else out in keeping with

6 that. It is certainly the local commander who is responsible to regulate

7 everything in keeping with the rules governing the work of the armed

8 forces.

9 Q. Thank you very much.

10 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I move that this

11 document be admitted into evidence.

12 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

13 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 767, Your Honours.

14 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

15 Q. Can we now, please, have Exhibit 375, this is the war log,

16 specifically the entry in relation to the 11th of November, 1,200 hours.

17 In the English this is page 10. This is the war log. Indeed, I think the

18 witness has the B/C/S in front of him, so maybe we could bring the English

19 up in our monitors. That would be better for the benefit of the Chamber.

20 I'm talking about page 10. The witness has both in hard copy and should

21 be able to find his way around. The page number is 10 in the English.

22 The entry is in relation to the 11th [as interpreted] of November,

23 1800 hours.

24 There's an error in the transcript. It says the 11th, and it

25 should be the 18th. The 18th of November. Page 30, line 15. The English

Page 12303

1 pages stand.

2 Page 10. Excellent. Thank you.

3 Do you see this entry right there, sir? It says: "Vukovar has

4 been liberated. JNA operations ceased at eleven o'clock and the elements

5 of our brigade on the right bank of the Vuka river as well as those from

6 the Milovo Brdo sector. Hostilities were suspended. A surrender of the

7 Ustasha forces in the Mitnica sector and Vukovar Hospital has been

8 announced. 1,200 hours Captain first class Premovic.

9 Isn't that what it says in the operations log, rather the war log?

10 Do you remember an assignment like this being issued?

11 A. I most certainly do. There was a lot of shooting, soldiers and

12 some of the officers welcomed the end of these hostilities with great joy.

13 And everything else from this point on would have been much easier to sort

14 out.

15 I remember the time when Vukovar eventually fell and when all

16 units and operations carried out by these units involved in liberating

17 Vukovar ceased.

18 Q. If you look at the first portion of this entry, it's in relation

19 to the armed operations ceasing as well as those that applied to members

20 of your brigade, right? If you look at the continuation of that entry,

21 you see that a surrender of the Ustasha forces is expected.

22 Did your brigade have any sort of involvement at all in what is

23 addressed in the last portion of this entry?

24 A. As far as I remember, the brigade commander drew our attention to

25 the fact that we had to be prepared to take over the captured forces of

Page 12304

1 the National Guards Corps and the MUP and to make sure they were safe

2 until they were evacuated and sent on to collection centres for further

3 processing and investigations. Likewise our attention was drawn to the

4 fact that there would be individual evacuations carried out for groups

5 that had not surrendered to OG South or any of its units. He said there

6 was a danger that the brigade might suffer losses by these Ustasha forces

7 that are left behind. Losses might be suffered as they were pulling out

8 of the city of Vukovar, he said.

9 Furthermore, units of OG South wanted to be rid of this in the

10 manner of speaking, because when prisoners were being taken it was the

11 remaining elements of OG South that bore the brunt of the operation, so to

12 speak. The brigade had a lot less to do as far as this was concerned.

13 But it had to secure the prisoners until they were evacuated, had to make

14 sure they were safe and out of the theatre of war as well as to prepare

15 them for further processing or vetting the normal procedure that is

16 applied to POWs.

17 Q. When you received this assignment, at headquarters, did you draw

18 up a plan about warning your units, in terms of their obligation to

19 implement international rules of war?

20 A. It has been a long time, and as far as I remember several orders

21 were written, detailed ones, to the effect that the Geneva Conventions

22 were to be complied with, and this especially concerned the treatment of

23 POWs. At the brigade command, we had a special rule enshrining all these

24 provisions.

25 I think all of the JNA units involved in combat operations were

Page 12305

1 aware of this rule, and aware of their obligation to apply it. However,

2 in addition to just simply having this rule, separate orders were written,

3 specific ones, and that is obvious if you look at orders issued by unit

4 commands during the attack on Vukovar.

5 MR. MOORE: Your Honour, might I just interrupt for one moment? I

6 don't criticize my learned friend in any way at all but phrases like the

7 brigade commanders or the brigade commander is used.

8 I wonder if it's possible for my learned friend to use the name of

9 the individual to whom that refers, so that it assists all parties when

10 they look at the, at the transcript either now or later on.

11 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.

12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I thank my learned friend. I said the

13 brigade command. I didn't say the brigade commanders. I said the brigade

14 command, as a collective body with all sorts of different assignments.

15 Nevertheless I will be asking the witness a more detailed question

16 about this and a more straightforward one.

17 Q. As far as this issue was concerned, which steps did the OG South

18 command take and which steps did the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade

19 take? And do you know what steps were taken by the command of the 1st

20 Military District?

21 A. What I can say is that the command of the 1st Military District as

22 far as the POWs were concerned, issued an order which was received by OG

23 South. An order was then written and sent to the command of the 80th

24 Motorised Brigade, according to which the 80th Motorised Brigade was

25 required to have all the items contained and the order implemented as far

Page 12306

1 as treatment of POWs was concerned.

2 Q. Let me just clarify what you shared with us a while ago in your

3 previous answer. Not this one. This was done at the brigade command

4 level. Which brigade, did you have in mind? Just to make it perfectly

5 clear here.

6 A. The 80th Motorised Brigade, that's the one I had in mind, as well

7 as all other brigade units, lower level units such as assault detachments,

8 and all other units that were involved in the implementation of this

9 attack.

10 Q. In terms of the application of international humanitarian law, was

11 this ever brought up at any of the daily briefings at the headquarters of

12 the 80th Motorised Brigade?

13 A. The brigade commanders, whenever battalion and division commanders

14 came to a briefing, on several occasions focused on this issue pointing

15 out its importance, with the objective of preventing any violations of the

16 Geneva Conventions or the international lore [as interpreted] of war from

17 occurring. I can't say how many times he drew the officer's attention to

18 this, but one thing that I'm certain about is it happened on a number of

19 different occasions, and not just once.

20 Q. Thank you very much. A while ago we were talking about one of the

21 entries in the war log, the 80th Brigade was assigned the task of making

22 sure that the prisoners were received and safe on the 18th of November,

23 1991.

24 Can we now look at the same war log, the same page, the entry in

25 relation to the 19th of November, at 1800 hours. In the English it is the

Page 12307

1 same page. Page 10. Down towards the bottom of the page. Thank you.

2 It reads: During the morning hours the Ustasha were taken to the

3 Sremska prison. The fighting continues in the hospital sector only where

4 the remains of the ZNG and MUP are expected to surrender. (About 200) an

5 order was issued to be prepared to organise the guarding of prisoners.

6 End of quote.

7 Do you remember an order like this coming in relation to the 19th

8 November. It arrived on the 19th of November at 1800 hours. Do you

9 remember an announcement like this?

10 A. I do remember an order saying that preparations were to be carried

11 out in order to receive this new group of captured members of the Z N G

12 and the MUP.

13 Q. Thank you. Were you involved when this first group that was

14 announced on the 18th of November at 1,200 hours was received, and did you

15 secure that group? Were you required to do anything about that first

16 group?

17 A. I was appointed by the brigade commander to be the POW camp

18 commander at the village of Ovcara. The first group, the group that was

19 the first to arrive, comprised about 70 members of the ZNG and the MUP.

20 Later on, I think another 100 or 110 prisoners were brought to the hanger

21 at this farm, at the Ovcara farm.

22 In addition to myself, the camp commander, nearly all the other

23 staff officers were involved. I mean the command of the 80th Motorised

24 Brigade as well as elements of the military police company and a

25 reconnaissance company.

Page 12308

1 I remember it was night time and the night-time was an

2 exceptionally cold one. We set up a length of rope in that hangar, beyond

3 which the prisoners were not allowed to move.

4 On the other side of this length of rope there were officers or

5 guards, two soldiers, one officer, two soldiers one officer with their

6 weapons at the ready, at the far end, were stacks of hay, there was one

7 person in particular and the prisoners seemed to have him as the person in

8 charge and he asked for the stacks of Hay to be given them to keep them

9 war which I allowed at the time.

10 Later on I became slightly concerned even thinking what might

11 happen if any of them had a lighter on or a box of matches and decided to

12 set fire to those stacks of hay, in order to stage an escape or something

13 like that.

14 Given the cold weather, however, you had to be a proper human

15 being and do something for those people, regardless of the fact there may

16 be criminals among them. Likewise, we made sure that they had cans or

17 vessels for passing water that night it was minus three, minus for our

18 perhaps even minus five. It was a very cold night and that's the reason I

19 remember all of these specifics as well.

20 Q. Let me just clarify about this group of prisoners that we're

21 talking about now. Where did they come from? Where were they brought

22 from? Which part of Vukovar? Be?

23 A. I it was it was our security people who had brought them over from

24 Mitnica, if I remember correctly. I had I they were from the Mitnica

25 sector.

Page 12309

1 Q. Just another question about this. You talked about the

2 involvement of the brigade command officers, in addition to the military

3 police company and the reconnaissance company. Roughly speaking how many

4 brigade command officers were involved in this assignment and I know you

5 can't remember everything specifically but which posts or positions did

6 they hold in the command at the time, these people who were involved?

7 A. There were between 10 and 12 of them involved but I'm afraid I

8 can't be more specific than that. It has been a very long time. For the

9 most part those were officers from the Staff, operative officers, chiefs

10 of branches, and services. Together with me these people were required to

11 make sure the prisoners were safe until an officer came along to take them

12 away and take them to Sremska Mitrovica with all new security measures

13 being applied.

14 If I remember correctly Sremska Mitrovic was one of the POW

15 collection centres at the time.

16 Q. Did you have a deputy, sir?

17 A. Yes, I did. It's just that the name escapes me, I can't remember

18 who it was.

19 Q. What if I tell you it was Stanimir Djordjevic?

20 A. That's it, that's right. The name just slipped my mind.

21 Q. How many shifts were envisaged, shifts of soldiers and officers to

22 secure the being hangar with the POWs?

23 A. I think there were two shifts rotating. I was required to be

24 there throughout and I was until this whole tribulation was over, so to

25 speak.

Page 12310

1 Q. I'm sorry. Did you say two shifts? Two shifts rotating? Did I

2 get that right?

3 A. Yes. There were two shifts rotating all the time. Perhaps there

4 were two hour shifts, perhaps less, perhaps more. I really can't

5 remember.

6 Q. Thank you very much. Can you tell us if you spent the entire

7 night with these POWs, annexed to them? Or were you also on rotation, as

8 it were? You would be on shift for a while, then you would rest.

9 A. I was there throughout in that building. I simply had to be there

10 with both shifts. This responsibility rested squarely on my shoulders and

11 I felt its burden. I made to make sure those people were safe, and dually

12 taken to the Sremska Mitrovica POW centre, to the best of my recollection

13 I was there throughout, but it's very difficult to be dead on simply

14 because it has been such a long time.

15 Q. Did you secure a spot where those members of your units, who were

16 not on a shift at the time, could keep warm, those who were trying to

17 enter the rotation system?

18 A. I really can't remember. I really can't say anything about that.

19 I can't remember if they had a place to keep warm, or not. I assume they

20 would have been able to light a fire and warm up a little. Those who

21 were resting. Those who were guarding the prisoners were certainly not

22 able to take advantage of anything like that.

23 Q. Throughout your time there were there any problems regarding the

24 prisoners, or was everything calm throughout?

25 A. As far as I remember this man in charge -- and I can't remember

Page 12311

1 his name -- I told him to come over and I said to him, "Please don't try

2 anything stupid. You or any of your men. Don't try to escape or anything

3 like that because you'll be fired at."

4 As far as that was concerned, there were no problems whatsoever.

5 There should be witnesses to confirm that, witnesses from that group. The

6 group that was put up at the Ovcara farm. Well, as long as they're honest

7 about it, of course.

8 Q. You said that there were no problems with them. Did the security

9 have problems with anyone from the outside trying to enter the hangar?

10 A. I think there were no such problems, either. As far as I

11 remember. I think that a group of police officers from OG South at a

12 certain time arrived to check whether everything was all right, but they

13 stayed very briefly at that building.

14 Q. Were you present when they arrived? Or did you just hear, hear of

15 it?

16 A. As far as I remember, I was there.

17 Q. Did they say why they had arrived? And did they -- did they speak

18 to you at all?

19 A. I think that they only asked whether there had been any problems

20 and that was it. They left. They had only asked whether there had been

21 any problems.

22 Q. Thank you. I would now like to have another look at the

23 operation log, Exhibit 371, the entry dated 18th of November, 14 hours 10

24 minutes on page 8, the English version. And you, sir, you have the B/C/S

25 version in front of you. Let's just wait for it to appear on our

Page 12312

1 screens.

2 I repeat, Exhibit 371, on page 8 in the English translation. The

3 date is November 18th and the time 14 hours 10 minutes.

4 Scroll down a little, please. Thank you. At 14 hours ten

5 minutes on November 18th, order was -- an order was passed for all

6 officers and some soldiers of the reconnaissance unit, the communications

7 company and another unit to line up. They had all -- they all went to

8 the Ovcara farm in Vukovar and their task was to organise a camp for

9 putting up the captured members of the MUP and ZNG from Croatian at the

10 Mitnica sector. Mitnica area.

11 Is this what the operation log says?

12 A. Yes, that's what it says. That's exactly what it says, and that's

13 what it was like, too.

14 Q. Thank you. I would now like to continue with the entry at 1600

15 hours on the same day.

16 The first group was taken by trucks around 7 see persons, 70, 70

17 Ustasha were put into detention. During the night, another 100 or so were

18 brought. Lieutenant Colonel Rade Danilovic was appointed commander of the

19 camp, and almost all officers of the brigade command were involved in the

20 security.

21 Mr. Danilovic, is this what the operations log says and does this

22 correspond to your recollection?

23 A. Yes, absolutely. That's what happened. I think that's -- I said

24 so a minute ago. I don't think it's necessary for me to repeat, but this

25 is exactly what happened.

Page 12313

1 Q. Thank you. Let me now continue with the entry at 1800 hours on

2 the same day, this is on the following page, 9 for the English version.

3 The B/C/S version is on the same page. So this is November 18th, 1991 at

4 1800 hours.

5 It says: A report was sent to the Corps Command with the

6 explanation of the fall of Vukovar and the details of the surrender of the

7 Ustasha. Day and night duty was ordered at the Ovcara farm.

8 Is this what it says and is this what you remember? And tell us

9 to which Corps this report was sent.

10 A. Yes. That's exactly what it says. As far as I remember, this was

11 sent to the command of the 24th Corps, to which the 80th Motorised Brigade

12 belongs.

13 Q. Thank you. Tell us, before we continue, what the following

14 date -- about the reports, the security reports and reports of the

15 completion of tasks, to who did you report about all of that?

16 A. I only reported to Lieutenant Colonel Vojnovic, the brigade

17 commander, who had given me my assignment, I think that is logical. And

18 in accordance with the line of command, he reported to superior commands

19 about the completion of these assignments.

20 Q. Thank you. Now, in the same Exhibit, 375, I would like to take a

21 look at the next entry --

22 THE INTERPRETER: We did not hear the date, I apologise.

23 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] -- at 800 hours. "Duty still

24 uninterrupted at the camp in Ovcara prison." Is this what it says,

25 Mr. Danilovic?

Page 12314

1 A. Yes, exactly, that's what the log reads. So the date is the 19th

2 of November at 800 hours, 19th of November, 800 hours.

3 Q. And now let's please look at the entry at 1,200 hours on the -- on

4 the 19th November, which says: We were informed that a decision was

5 taken that the captured members of the ZNG be transferred to Sremska

6 Mitrovica. Lieutenant Colonel Danilovic was relieved from the

7 responsibility concerning the guarding of the captured MUP and ZNG members

8 in the Ovcara sector.

9 Mr. Danilovic, can you explain, based on what you remember, can

10 you explain this entry?

11 A. According to my recollection, the commander relieved me from this

12 duty to send me to the 2nd Motorised Battalion with some other officers

13 from the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade to accomplish the next

14 mission, because there were great problems in that area. There was one

15 dead or two, and six or seven wounded soldiers. I think that parts of the

16 1st and 2nd Company had deserted their positions without an order, and

17 gone to Nemci, because that battalion, as far as I remember, had joined

18 the 3rd Mechanised Guard Brigade there, if I remember well. And there

19 were big problems there, and that's why, as far as I remember, the

20 commander had sent me to accomplish a mission there.

21 Q. Yes. Just tell me where you were supposed to go, and on which

22 day, if you remember.

23 A. I was supposed to go with a group of officers, which, apart from

24 me, included the commander of the Pioneers, then there were two Captains

25 from the morale organ. I think the name of one of them was Radosadovic

Page 12315

1 [phoen]. I don't remember the names now, and I think I was supposed to,

2 to report about the situation in the battalion, and warn them that they

3 should accomplish their assignments in the coming period, and that a

4 special focus was to be put on that, because on the 15th and 16th through

5 the 18th of November, a unit was massacred by the members of the ZNG and

6 MUP from Croatia.

7 Q. Thank you, Mr. Danilovic. Let's come back to this assignment of

8 yours when you reach it in the operations log.

9 Before you left to accomplish your mission, the operations log on

10 the 19th of November, at 2300 hours, the English version is on page 10,

11 reads that the commander of the 80th Brigade had issued orders regarding

12 the commander of the site.

13 Do you remember who he appointed?

14 A. According to this document, it says exactly that the commander of

15 the village of Ovcara was Captain First Class Jan Marcek and as commander

16 of LAD PVO his deputy was Captain First Class Milisav Drazic. This is a

17 xerox copy, which is not so easily legible.

18 Q. Did the brigade commander at the same time appoint commanders of

19 the villages of Grabovo and Jakubovac?

20 A. Yes. After the relief of the partisan unit, the Captain Misevic,

21 or whatever his name, was substituted by Lieutenant Colonel Jovic of the

22 25th tactical group, and he was to appoint the persons responsible to him

23 for the villages of Jakubovac and Grabovo as far as the organisation of

24 the duties that must be in place at inhabited settlements are concerned.

25 Q. The last paragraph of this entry reads that the: Order had been

Page 12316

1 typed and signed by 2330 minutes and "will be delivered early tomorrow

2 morning". Is this what it says?

3 A. Yes, this is exactly what it says.

4 Q. I would now like to take a look at Exhibit 369.

5 Exhibit 369 it's an order of the command of the 80th Motorised

6 Brigade. It reads: "Strogo pova," dated November 20th, 1991.

7 So you can see the English version on the screen, and we also need

8 the B/C/S version.

9 So this is marked D 000537. Let us zoom in on that.

10 Mr. Danilovic, can you see it?

11 A. Yes, I have it on my screen.

12 Q. Is this the order of the commander of the 80th Brigade by which

13 he appoints Jan Marcek commander of Ovcara village?

14 A. Yes. It reads: I appoint Jan Marcek commander of the village

15 of Ovcara, and I appoint as a substitute Captain First Class Drazic

16 Milisav. The other members of the command will be appointed by the

17 village commander. This is item 1 -- oh, yes, now I can see it better.

18 In the village mentioned, law and order have to be organised in accordance

19 with rules of service in the armed forces and the relevant provisions that

20 pertain to garrison and barracks service, as well as take on measures

21 directed at the prevention of incursions of terrorists, terrorist groups

22 and sabotage groups and prevent them from conducting terrorist actions.

23 Draw up instructions for work and ensure normal life conditions for the,

24 for the inhabitants.

25 It also says, prevent all occasion -- all occurrences of the

Page 12317

1 mistreatment of the local population.

2 Is this, content-wise, equal to the orders that we have seen in

3 Exhibit 767 that refers to the village of Sotin?

4 A. Yes. Content wise, it is the same. Only this is directed to

5 Captain first class Jan Marcek, from LAD PVO.

6 Q. I would now like to take a look at Exhibit 373. The date is

7 marked OD 000533. So 533.

8 Mr. Danilovic, we needn't read this out again. Just have a look

9 at this order, if you please, and tell us whether this order -- well,

10 this is the order by which Lieutenant Colonel Milan Jovic is appointed,

11 the commander of Grabovo and Jakubovac?

12 A. Yes. This is the same order. Only it applies to these two

13 villages and it mentions Lieutenant Colonel Jovic and the commander of

14 the 195th tactical group, but the content is the same.

15 Q. The number of this order is 32- 2. Yes.

16 A. Yes. Of 20th November, 1991.

17 THE INTERPRETER: Please do not talk at the same time. We cannot

18 interpret both.

19 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation].

20 Q. Please, I would now like to have on the screen a document from

21 the 65 ter list marked ID 03. This is the second in the set of handouts

22 that I distributed to everybody. The ERN number is 0D 000537.

23 For you, sir, the information is that the, that this is the

24 second document in the sequence; 1D 03. Number 3.

25 This is the strictly classified order 34-2.

Page 12318

1 Would you kindly take a look at this order, Mr. Danilovic and

2 tell us what Lieutenant Colonel Milorad Vojnovic ordered here and when.

3 A. This strictly confidential order, 34- 2, dated 27th -- the 22nd

4 of November, says that the command should be organised in the villages of

5 Grabovo, Jakubovac and Ovcara and that the commander of the 195th

6 tactical group would appoint the commanders, namely one said command for

7 Jakubovac and Ovcara and another site command for the village of Grabovo.

8 This is what item 1 of that order says.

9 Q. We have to repeat the date, so this is page 46, line 3. The date

10 is November 22nd, rather than "27th".

11 A. Yes, it is. The 22nd of November.

12 Q. Take a look at item 2, please, sir, don't read it out. Tell me

13 whether it -- it has the same content as the other items and the all

14 previous orders appointing the site commanders?

15 A. Yes. It's identical to all previous orders. Only this has

16 another added item, item 3, which says that this order overrules the order

17 dated November 20th, 1991, number 32-2, and 32-3. Strictly confidential.

18 This is added as item 3 in this order.

19 Q. Thank you very much. Please explain to us why the commander of

20 the 80th Brigade, by this order, overruled the previous order. Is this

21 normal procedure when issuing orders, or not.

22 A. I suppose that the commander had his reasons for changing this

23 order. I really cannot remember for sure what his basic motive was.

24 At any rate, if an order is changed, it must be replaced by a new

25 one.

Page 12319

1 Q. Can you say that this is standard procedure when replacing one

2 order by another?

3 A. It happens that under some circumstances new orders must be

4 passed. I can give examples that have nothing to do with this concrete

5 case.

6 Q. We're only interested in the procedure. If the commander

7 replaces one order by another, does he overrule the previous one?

8 A. Yes, absolutely. You cannot have two orders on the same thing at

9 the same time, because that would -- that would mean great problems for

10 units in the performance of their combat tasks.

11 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I would like

12 to tender this into evidence, this order.

13 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

14 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 777, Your Honours.

15 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation].

16 Q. Could we now see on our screens ID 060 D 000316. This is the

17 order of the command of the 1st Military District. It should be in this

18 set that I distributed today. And in number 6. Have you found it?

19 THE REGISTRAR: Could the defence counsel please repeat the

20 identification number of the document. Thank you.

21 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Certainly. 1D 06, ERN number is 0D

22 000376. Thank you.

23 Q. Mr. Danilovic, have you had occasion to see this order during

24 your stay in Vukovar?

25 First of all, did you ever see this order?

Page 12320

1 A. To tell you the truth, I can't remember whether I held this in my

2 hands, or not.

3 Q. In that case, we'll take it item by item and then we'll see

4 whether you can remember it.

5 A. If I can say something? Most often we would receive our orders

6 from the first superior command. However, on very rare occasions, if

7 something was extremely urgent or important, we would receive those

8 orders directly from the higher superior command. And then based on

9 that, we had to draft our own order specifying the tasks of lower

10 subordinate units within the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade.

11 Q. Thank you, Mr. Danilovic. Now, please be so kind and follow what

12 I read. Item 1. Commands of the 12th Corps, and the first. Proletarian

13 Guards. 3rd Motorised Division. And all commands of units which have

14 their areas of responsibility shall establish town commands in all

15 liberated settlements, officers at the level of battalion commander and

16 above shall be appointed town commanders.

17 Do you know of this order, as to how town commands or local

18 commands were established?

19 A. Yes, certainly. We have already seen two or three orders

20 previously appointing town commanders for Ovcara, Jakubovac, Grabovo,

21 Sotin and perhaps some other towns where it was necessary to appoint town

22 commanders or local commanders in order to ensure that all requirements

23 necessary for the life and work of units in that area were met.

24 Q. Would you please look at item 3. Item 2 specifies the tasks of

25 commands and please look at item 3 and tell me whether item 3 pertains to

Page 12321

1 town commands where there are no civilian organs of authority.

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Would you please read it -- read how town commands are organised

4 in such settlements.

5 A. This item 3 of the order of the 1st Military District, specifies

6 the town commands in settlements where there are no civilian organs of

7 authority shall organise service in town, pursuant to provisions of the

8 rules on service of armed forces pertaining to a garrison, barracks or

9 encampment, in accordance with prevailing conditions in that specific

10 town.

11 In towns where there are no civilian authorities, town commands

12 have the sole responsibility for securing such a town from sabotage

13 operations, as well as ensuring order and safety of citizens.

14 In towns where there are civilian organs of authority, when it

15 comes to issues of order and security, they shall closely cooperate with

16 organs of authority, especially police. This is the content of this item

17 3 of this order of the 1st Military District.

18 Q. We will now go back to item 2, which is the task of the town

19 command. Would you please tell us what were the basic tasks of the town

20 commands.

21 A. The basic tasks of the town commands were to establish full

22 military authority in liberated towns; to conduct a census of all

23 military conscripts in their areas of responsibility, to list them all

24 down; until civilian authorities are established, to take measures to

25 ensure order, peace and safety of citizens, ensure basic supplies and

Page 12322

1 other utility services.

2 They are also to work on establishing civilian authorities in

3 municipalities pursuant to the order of Municipal Assembly of Ovcara,

4 that's what it says here. Eastern Slavonia and Western Srem.

5 The following municipalities: Vukovar, Dalj, Vinkovci, with the seat in

6 Mirkovci, and Osijek with a seat in Tenj, as well as in settlements,

7 local communes, and in addition to that, they shall cooperate with TO

8 staffs, police stations and police organs in towns where they exist.

9 This is the task that was give to the town commands.

10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Danilovic. Now let us please look at item 7 of

11 this order. Do you see here that they shall report in daily reports

12 about the establishment of town commands?

13 A. Yes, that's what it says, in item 7 of this order; that in daily

14 reports they shall report on the establishment of town commands,

15 establishment of organs of authorities, as regulated by the documents,

16 4614/32 dated 19th of November, 1991, as well as to inform on any

17 problems and dilemmas in relation to these issues.

18 Q. Could we now look at item 8. Would you please read it out and

19 tell us what it is about.

20 A. Item 8 makes it mandatory for subordinate units as follows: When

21 moving units assigned to town commands, resolve all issues in relation to

22 town commands, which is to say that a new town commander needs to be

23 appointed if the existing unit is leaving that area.

24 Q. Thank you, Mr. Danilovic.

25 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I suggest -- I, rather,

Page 12323

1 tender this document into evidence.

2 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

3 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 778, Your Honours.

4 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think it is time for

5 our second break.

6 Our second break.

7 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Vasic. And this evening it will be

8 necessary for us to rise at 6.45. We will now resume at ten minutes to

9 six.

10 --- Recess taken at 5.30 p.m.

11 --- On resuming at 5.55 p.m.

12 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Vasic.

13 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.

14 Q. Mr. Danilovic, we were talking about the units that were

15 resubordinated to the 80th Motorised Brigade, between the 15th and the

16 20th of November, 1991. We looked at Exhibit 481 and we realized that

17 the tactical group of the 195th Brigade was resubordinated to the 80th

18 Motorised Brigade with its 450 members. Can we now please look at

19 Exhibit 412. This is another order of the resubordination of a different

20 unit. The ERN is 03502643. That's the B/C/S reference.

21 The English is 03502643. You don't have that in your folder,

22 sir, please look at the monitor. It reads: Regulating the issue of

23 resubordination, order strictly confidential, 405-1, the 15th of

24 November, 1991.

25 Can you please have a look and tell us the interpreter: The

Page 12324

1 interpreters couldn't hear the last part of Mr. Vasic's question.

2 THE WITNESS: This order resubordinate the Stara Pazova detachment

3 and all issues in connection with the resubordination are to be sorted by

4 the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade, this is an order of OG South.

5 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation].

6 Q. Thank you very much. Do you remember this unit being subordinated

7 to the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade as of the 15th of November,

8 1991?

9 A. Yes, I do. I do remember.

10 Q. Can we please have a look at a 65 ter document. ID 05, it's the

11 fourth document in the sequence, 0D 000470, this is the same set of

12 documents that we distributed. This is document number 4 in the set. 1D

13 05 is the number it bears. Thank you. We should have it on our monitors

14 now.

15 Mr. Danilovic, this is an order by the command of the 80th

16 Brigade 40-4, the date is 23rd of November 1991. What exactly is this

17 order about?

18 A. This is a request submitted to the superior command, that is in

19 this case the command of the military district in order to clear the

20 Vukovar barracks.

21 Q. I think you've got the wrong document. Can you please look at

22 the monitor.

23 A. My apologies, really I was looking at the number 4 tab. So this

24 is in reference to the resubordination of units. It's an order to the

25 command of the Stara Pazova TO detachment, in order to successfully

Page 12325

1 implement the decision and order of the exhibits of OG South, strictly

2 confidential 405-1 dated the 15th of November, 1991, and in order to

3 unify command for the following operations resubordinate the following

4 units. Stara Pazova detachment from the 80th Motorised Brigade, shall be

5 resubordinated to the first guards Mechanised division. All issues

6 regarding its resubordination will be regulated by the command of the

7 80th Motorised Brigade, item 2 of this order reads, the Stara Pazova TO

8 detachment shall be carrying out missions in the following operations in

9 keeping with the decision of the commander of the first guards Mechanised

10 division, with a command post in Ilok.

11 Q. All right. This means that the Stara Pazova TO detachment was

12 resubordinated to the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade. Between the

13 15th of November, as we saw in Exhibit 412, and the 23rd of November and

14 by this order it was resubordinated to the command of the 80th Motorised

15 Brigade.

16 A. Certainly, Mr. Judge. Certainly.

17 Q. Your Honours, I move that this exhibit be admitted into evidence

18 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

19 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 779 Your Honours.

20 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

21 Q. I would like to now move on to a different unit. Can we have

22 Exhibit 420, please. This is 03271247, as the ERN.

23 Thank you very much. Can we zoom in, please. Sir, can you look

24 at the monitor, please and tell me, what sort of an order is this?

25 A. I apologies. This is an order by OG South, strictly confidential

Page 12326

1 446-1, dated the 20th of November, 1991 at 8 o'clock.

2 This is also in reference to regulating issues regarding the

3 resubordination of units. This order is in reference to the armoured

4 battalion of the 544th Motorised Brigade. All issues regarding its

5 resubordination shall be regulated by the command of the 80th Motorised

6 Brigade. Item 2 reads, until a new assignment is received, the armoured

7 battalion of the 544 Motorised Brigade will be carrying out assignments

8 in keeping with the decision dated 16th of November, 1991. Signed by

9 Colonel Mrksic.

10 Q. Does this order not say that the armoured battalion of the 544

11 Motorised Brigade is hereby resubordinated to the command of the 80th

12 Motorised Brigade on the morning of the 20th of November, 1991?

13 A. Yes, quite obviously. There is no doubt about that. Crystal

14 clear.

15 Q. Do you remember the sector in which these units were units that

16 were here, the resubordinated to the 80th Motorised Brigade, the armoured

17 battalion of the 544 Motorised Brigade, the unit that we just spoken

18 about, the Stara Pazova TO detachment, another unit we have mentioned,

19 and the tactical group of the 195 Motorised Brigade. In which area do

20 these units end up after they have been resubordinated to the 80th

21 Motorised Brigade?

22 A. If memory serves, I think these units were in the broader area of

23 Ovcara, roughly speaking. I'm afraid I can't be more specific in the

24 sense of providing a description of how these units were deployed

25 exactly.

Page 12327

1 I do know for a fact that they were in that general area Ovcara,

2 Jakubovac, Grabovo, in that general area.

3 Q. Could we see that in the area of responsibility taken over by the

4 80th Motorised Brigade from the 20th March, Partisan Brigade after the

5 20th Partisan Brigade had pulled out?

6 A. Yes, yes, very much so, this is the very area.

7 Q. Thank you very much. We will now move on to something completely

8 different. It's about -- again it's about the operations log. If we

9 could please have Exhibit 371, the entry in relation to the 20th of

10 November, at 0900 hours. There's the B/C/S version. In English this is

11 page, page 10.

12 The witness is looking at the B/C/S. Therefore we can have the

13 English page displayed on our monitors, please. Thank you. The 20th of

14 November. We want the 8 o'clock entry.

15 This is the lower half of the page. If we could please zoom in

16 on that. Mr. Danilovic, it says: A group of the brigades officers

17 comprising the Chief of Staff and operative officer, a moral guidance

18 assistant and two clerks as well as the moral guidance assistant were off

19 to the village of Nijemci to take in the -- to calm the situation in the

20 unit which had been involved in the liberation of the villages of

21 Podgradac and Nijemci? Is that what it says?

22 A. Yes, that is precisely which it says and that is what happened.

23 I know because I took the group there, as group of officers, command

24 officers brigade command officers pursuant to the order of Lieutenant

25 Vojnovic. If necessary I can elaborate. I can provide further

Page 12328

1 details about the -- about touring the 2nd Motorised Battalion.

2 Its commander was Captain First Class Premovic.

3 Q. Thank you. We'll not be needing any details about that tour.

4 You went there in order to inspect the situation, right?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. We want to know why. It says 8 o'clock in the morning. Was it

7 in the morning that you left to go on that mission?

8 A. I think it was in the morning, yes. It says here 8 o'clock. I'm

9 not sure if it was eight specifically or perhaps half past agent T is

10 sort of difficult for me to pin down that down. But I know it was in the

11 morning hours, early in the morning, you might say. To allow me

12 sufficient time to tour all the battalion units, were this team set up by

13 the brigade commander and in order for me to submit a specific report to

14 him on the situation found in that unit. So that we might be able to

15 take certain steps over the ensuing period of time to calm the situation

16 and raise the combat morale which had been impaired to a significant

17 degree.

18 Q. Thank you very much. In addition to this group that on the 20th

19 of November, 1991 you led, on this mission, to the village of Nijemci,

20 did anyone else from your unit go there? Did you come across anyone else

21 anyone else from your unit go there? Did you come across anyone else in

22 Nijemci when you were there?

23 A. I really can't remember whether anyone else went there aside from

24 this group of officers that I led. I really can't be expected to

25 remember any detail. It has been a long time, and I would not like to

Page 12329

1 speculate.

2 If there's anything to show what the situation was, if this was

3 recorded any where, maybe we might use that to jog my memory. This way

4 I'm really unable to remember whether anyone else from the 80th Motorised

5 Brigade went there to tour the units, or on a different mission. I

6 really can't remember.

7 Q. We've heard evidence before this Trial Chamber that Captain

8 Jankovic, the commander of the military police company went to Negoslavci

9 that morning, would that jog your memory, sir? Or is it the case that you

10 still can't remember seeing him there?

11 A. I really can't confirm that. I can't stretch my memory far enough

12 to remember that. I really don't remember him being there. I remember

13 this group of officers, the chief of engineers, two or three other

14 officers, the moral guidance assistant commander from the brigade command

15 and two clerks from the moral guidance department. That's as much as I

16 can remember, but I would not like to perjure myself or anything, so I

17 simply can't remember.

18 Q. Just one thing, do you remember Rizmadovic [phoen] being in your

19 group, was he with you?

20 A. Not that I remember. I don't remember him being part of our

21 group.

22 Q. If you look at the operations log, Exhibit 371, the entry in

23 relation to the 21st of November, 1600 hours. This is page 11 of the

24 English. A group of officers came back from Nijemci that had left the

25 previous day, pursuant to an order of the commander of the 80th Motorised

Page 12330

1 Brigade. Is this entry in reference to your group, and do you remember

2 that?

3 A. Yes, yes, I do remember by all means.

4 THE INTERPRETER: We can't hear Mr. Vasic at all. May he please

5 be asked to move closer to the microphone. Thank you.

6 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation].

7 Q. Did you.

8 THE INTERPRETER: We didn't hear the last part of the question.

9 THE WITNESS: I submitted a detailed oral report to the

10 commander. I really can't remember whether there was a written

11 report too. But I was informed in detail about the situation, about how

12 the battalions units were deployed and the problems that arose during the

13 joint attack with the first Mechanised Guards Brigade.

14 Q. My apologies to the interpreters. I will try to stay closer to

15 the microphone so they can hear me properly. Unfortunately, for that

16 reason, they missed the last portion of my question which was in

17 reference to the report, whether Mr. Danilovic submitted a report to the

18 commander of the 80th Brigade once he was back in Negoslavci, back at the

19 command post in Negoslavci.

20 A. Yes, I've answered that one.

21 Q. Can you please check the entry in relation to 1700 hours, the

22 date still being the 21st of November 1991. This is Page 12. 1700

23 hours. It reads: Officers arrived with regular reports.

24 I can't read the next word. "Problems"?

25 A. Problems and everybody was handed out assignments for

Page 12331

1 recognition. Or for identification.

2 Q. Do you remember this briefing on the 21st of November at 1700

3 hours? Do you remember if anything was said at this briefing about what

4 had occurred in the hanger at Ovcara on the 20th of November, the night

5 between the 20th and the 21st?

6 A. No. Not a single word. No reference whatsoever to that

7 unfortunate event. Not as far as I remember. Nothing at all was said

8 about that.

9 Q. While you were away from the brigade command, did you learn

10 anything about what was going on at the Ovcara farm? And I mean the time

11 you spent in the village of Nemci when I say "while you were away".

12 A. The distance is 15 to 20 kilometres, just to err on the side of

13 caution, and there was no way I could know what was going on, nor was I

14 in touch with the brigade commander. Such communication is set up when a

15 brigade is on the move, whenever necessary.

16 Once I was back at the brigade command all I can remember is that

17 there wasn't a single meeting about that, about those problems. Not a

18 single meeting about what had occurred in the village of Ovcara.

19 Q. What about the commander of the 80th Brigade or the chief of

20 security, did they talk to you about what had occurred at Ovcara?

21 A. No. They certainly didn't. I'm certain about that. They might

22 be in a position to confirm that for you, but as far as I remember, we

23 did not discuss that matter.

24 Q. Speaking of the area of responsibility of your own brigade, can

25 you tell us if checks were conducted by any of the superior commands

Page 12332

1 within that area as the fighting was still going on and then after the

2 liberation of Vukovar?

3 A. One thing I can say with certainty is that during the attacks, no

4 checks were conducted. There may have been the odd inspection, but after

5 the fall of Vukovar on the 18th of November, inspections became more

6 frequent from our superior commands, inspection teams would come. After

7 that the civilian authorities from Kragujevac and all of those other

8 municipalities would come over to visit conscripts with certain kinds of

9 supplies such as cigarettes, mineral water that sort of thing.

10 Q. You say that was after the 18th. Were those inspection teams from

11 OG South? Or from the 1st Military District?

12 A. I can't remember the specifics, but I think there were inspections

13 by OG South as well as those conducted by the 1st Military District, as

14 well as our own command, the 24th Kragujevac corps.

15 Q. Can we please look at Exhibit 371 now, that is in relation to the

16 22nd of November, 1991, 1700 hours. The English page is -- it's page

17 number 13. What this is about is the commanders of the subordinate units

18 appear to have submitted a regular combat report.

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Do you know if only a regular combat report was submitted on that

21 day, or was there actually a briefing that was held at the command?

22 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note, we didn't hear the location

23 that Mr. Vasic mentioned.

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I really can't remember with sure

25 and certain knowledge whether after the regular combat's report had been

Page 12333

1 submitted there was a briefing that was held with subordinate officers

2 from the battalions and divisions in attendance.

3 I really can't say with certainty and I can't be very specific

4 about this. Most frequently briefings were held in the afternoon.

5 Normally at the end of day, about 1800 hours, usually. This was well

6 into November. It got dark sooner and operations would cease.

7 It was at this time of day that commanders would be back to

8 report on what had been done, and then they would be dispatched back to

9 their units with new assignments given then by the brigade commander.

10 However, it was not the established practice for these briefings to take

11 place on a daily basis; that being the reason I can't remember whether

12 there was actually a briefing held on that day, or not.

13 Q. Do you remember that at one point in time the command of the 80th

14 Brigade took over the area of responsibility of OG South? If so, when?

15 A. All I remember -- well, I'm afraid I can't be very specific,

16 whether it was the 22nd, possibly the 23rd but I think it was one of

17 those days, thereabouts, but I can't say with certainty. I think it was

18 after the 20th of November, that's what I think, at least.

19 Q. Exhibit 425, please. ERN is 03027149. Can we please have the

20 B/C/S. Thank you. The last portion. This is the OG South command,

21 daily combat report, 22nd of November, 1991.

22 Can we please zoom in on the last two or three paragraphs. It

23 reads:

24 "In the course of the day all measures were taken for the 80th

25 Motorised Brigade to take over the organisational and command function in

Page 12334

1 the area of responsibility of OG South."

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. The command of the 80th Motorised Brigade received all the

4 instructions and documents in order to organise control and command in

5 the area of responsibility covered by OG South. My question to you sir,

6 is: Do you know how they clear a memory of when you received this?

7 A. Yes. We received this order and it does jog my memory, but I

8 wasn't sure whether it was the 21st or 22nd or 23rd. I just wasn't

9 prepared to commit. But I know that it was roughly speaking around this

10 time that this handover took place, in terms of the area of

11 responsibility.

12 Q. What about the last act in this handover? Isn't it the handover

13 of control and command documents, according to procedure?

14 A. Yes. Most certainly. That is the last act in the handover. The

15 documents are handed off, and then the unit taking over the area of

16 responsibility picks up where the unit on its way out had left off in

17 terms of assignments and responsibilities.

18 Q. Do you remember whether the commander of the 80th Motorised

19 Brigade, Lieutenant Colonel Vojnovic, on the 22nd of November, 1991

20 issued an order on the transfer of the headquarters to the Vukovar

21 barracks?

22 A. Yes, I do remember that because he told me to set up a group that

23 would see to it that appropriate accommodation was provided. So we went

24 there and this was a barracks where one of the JNA units had been

25 billeted up to 1991, before the well known developments that occurred in

Page 12335

1 Croatia. The barracks itself had been damaged to quite a considerable

2 extent. And this is clear if you look at that document where we request

3 assistance from the command of the 1st Military District to do something

4 about mending the barracks so that it could be used again. Or rather so

5 that the brigade command could be set up in the barracks.

6 Q. Speaking of the barracks and your own assignment, the assignment

7 you received from Commander Vojnovic, can we please look at 1D 04, the

8 ERN is 0D 000548, it's a 65 ter document.

9 This is one of the set of documents that we distributed today.

10 It's the number 3. 1D 04. You have it right there in this set, sir.

11 Would you please be so kind as to comment on this order. What does it

12 mean?

13 A. I referred to this order in my own assignment already, the

14 request for clearing the Vukovar barracks. This was submitted to the

15 command of the 1st Military District and the command of the 24th corps,

16 to the attention of -- it says with the objective of clearing the

17 barracks in Vukovar into which the -- or rather it might be a better idea

18 to say, into which the command of the 80th Motorised Brigade, from

19 Kragujevac was to be transferred after the final operations regarding the

20 liberation of Vukovar. Please create the prerequisite conditions in order

21 to ensure that there were at least the minimum requirements in place for

22 normal life and work answer winter conditions in these barracks. Then it

23 lists the priorities.

24 It talks about the roof, because most of the roofs were leaking

25 rain because of artillery damage. Item number 2, put up glass panes on

Page 12336

1 all doors and windows on the headquarters' building and the residential

2 facilities.

3 Number 3, repair the water lines and sewer lines in the barracks.

4 This is because there was no water at all, no running water.

5 Item 4, ensure there is central heating and ensure that it is up

6 and running.

7 Number 5, make sure there is enough drinking water in the

8 barracks. And mend the kitchen and the dining room for the units.

9 Number 6, make sure there is electricity in the barracks, because

10 there was no electricity at the time.

11 Number 7, mend the signal centre and make sure it is up and

12 running, and they mean the stationary equipment there. So these were the

13 requests of Commander Vojnovic. Four different things to be mended in

14 these barracks and for assistance to be provided by the superior command

15 which was the command of the 1st Military District.

16 Q. The date for this order is the 23rd of November, 1991; isn't that

17 what it says?

18 A. Yes indeed that is what it says. Indeed, that is the date.

19 Q. Bearing in mind this list of requests, of roofs that were

20 damaged, windows smashed, no running water, no electricity, no sewer

21 lines, was those barracks fit to hold so many people now that you arrived,

22 given the conditions that prevailed at the time?

23 A. If you look at our request, it is quite obvious that the

24 conditions that prevailed in the barracks at the time were, what shall I

25 call them, the barracks was not safe for holding so many people and that

Page 12337

1 no proper working conditions were in place.

2 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. I would

3 like to tender this document into evidence.

4 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

5 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 780, Your Honours.

6 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

7 Q. We were saying a little while ago that the command of the 80th

8 Motorised Brigade took over responsibility in an area covered by OG

9 South.

10 Did your command at a moment in time become town commander, of

11 Vukovar?

12 A. Yes, I believe there is a -- there is a relevant order. As we

13 were the highest ranking command in the city of Vukovar it was logical

14 for the command -- commander, commanders of the brigade to become the

15 command of that town also.

16 Q. Thank you. Tell me, were the tasks of your command in accordance

17 with those from the order of the 1st Military District that referred to

18 the establishment of military authority in the whole area and maintaining

19 law and order and security for the population?

20 A. Yes, absolutely. The command of the brigade invested huge

21 efforts into the organisation and the establishment of civilian

22 authority. I don't remember whether it was the General Staff or the

23 command of the 1st Military District, but I know, for certain, that two

24 or three officers arrived to assist us in the establishment of civilian

25 authority in the city of Vukovar. And we wanted to transfer some

Page 12338

1 responsibilities to civilian authorities.

2 I think that Lieutenant Colonel Milo Stojakovic was there, and if

3 I remember well there were two more officers assisting in the

4 establishment of civilian authority after the cessation of combat

5 activity.

6 Q. Could we now take a look at Exhibit 371 entry for 8 o'clock, 24

7 of November. The witness has the B/C/S version. I would like the

8 English version on the screen. It is on page 14. That's the operations

9 log of the 80th Motorised Brigade.

10 So the entry is dated 24th of November, 800 hours, on page 14.

11 This says the commander and the Chief of Staff are leaving for an

12 inspection of units at Vukovar -- and an inspection of Vukovar barracks

13 for the purpose of the accommodation of staff units, activities on the

14 organisation of military authority in Vukovar.

15 Can you tell us, what kind of inspection of the staff of the TO

16 Vukovar and police this was. Can you elaborate what those duties were

17 that the commander had.

18 A. The staff of the Territorial Defence was not subordinate to the

19 command of the 80th Motorised Brigade, but that command cooperated very

20 closely with that staff, assisting them to achieve -- to accomplish their

21 tasks. That staff established that police station, if I remember well,

22 the last name of that police officer was Travnica, and he carried out

23 his tasks very seriously, and I remember meeting him several times for

24 coordination purposes, and we also secured some buildings in the city.

25 We organised patrols, or, rather, check-points in town, since there were

Page 12339

1 still individual instances of members of the ZNG and MUP of the Republic

2 of Croatia pulling out of there, out from the town of Vukovar and its

3 suburbs.

4 Q. The cooperation with the staff of TO Vukovar, whose

5 responsibility was it from your command?

6 A. As far as I remember, often times that responsibility was assumed

7 by the brigade commander. I think that I, too, went to that staff

8 sometimes, but I really couldn't give you the details since it's been a

9 long time.

10 Q. There are entries in the operations log about that. We needn't

11 go into all of those entries. Now, the Court can check that. So much

12 about the Staff of TO Vukovar. We can continue.

13 Tell me, do you know that the commander of the staff of TO

14 Vukovar was wounded at a certain point in time, and do you know that a

15 report was submitted to the brigade commander?

16 A. Yes. I remember that Miomir Vujevic was wounded by his escort

17 from a Skorpion automatic pistol. 7.65 millimetres calibre. The superior

18 command was informed of it, and he was transferred, as far as I remember,

19 to VMA in Belgrade. I think it was a wound in the stomach, but I

20 really never received any feedback about that incident. So I don't know

21 whether it was an accident or something else.

22 Q. Can we look at the 6th document, 1D 07. So 1D 000511, or perhaps

23 we should leave this document for tomorrow, as it is already 6.45.

24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Vasic. We will need to do it

25 tomorrow and resume tomorrow at 9 a.m.

Page 12340

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, Mr. Presiding Judge,

2 I want to have a request. I would like to, to greet Mr. Sljivancanin and

3 Mr. Radic, if you will allow.

4 JUDGE PARKER: I'm afraid that is not permitted while you are

5 giving your evidence. That will have to wait until you conclude your

6 evidence.

7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.45 p.m.,

8 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 26th day of

9 September, 2006 at 9.00 a.m.