Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 13077

1 Thursday, 27 October 2005

2 [Open session]

3 --- Upon commencing at 2.23 p.m.

4 [The accused entered court]

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Registrar, good afternoon to you. Could you

6 kindly call the case, please.

7 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is case number

8 IT-03-68, the Prosecutor versus Naser Oric.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you.

10 Good afternoon to you, Mr. Oric. Can you follow the proceedings

11 in your own language?

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours,

13 ladies and gentlemen, yes, I can follow the proceedings in my own

14 language.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you, please sit down.

16 And Mr. Wubben, appearances for the Prosecution?

17 MR. WUBBEN: Good afternoon, Your Honours and also good afternoon

18 to the Defence. My name is Jan Wubben lead counsel for the Prosecution.

19 I'm here together with co-counsel Mr. Gramsci di Fazio, Ms. Joanne

20 Richardson, and our case manager, Mrs. Donnica Henry-Frijlink.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Wubben and good afternoon to you

22 and your team.

23 Appearances for Naser Oric?

24 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours, my

25 name is Vasvija Vidovic and together with Mr. John Jones, I appear for Mr.

Page 13078

1 Naser Oric. We have with us our legal assistant, Ms. Adisa Mehic, and our

2 CaseMap manager, Mr. Geoff Roberts, and I wish to bid good day to my

3 learned colleagues from the OTP.

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

5 and your team. Any preliminaries? None? Later on in the day, probably

6 almost most definitely before 4.00 or before the Registry closes its

7 doors, we will file the Rule 68 decision. All right?

8 Any -- I hear you have no preliminaries? I have seen your lists

9 of proposed list of documents. Is that indicative that you will probably

10 finish your cross-examination by the end of business tomorrow?

11 MR. DI FAZIO: I'm certainly planning to. As I stated yesterday,

12 that's my plan.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: No, no. Because if you think that is no longer

14 feasible, I will give instructions to Madam Registrar to contact the

15 Victims and Witnesses Section to start preparing for alternative

16 arrangements.

17 MR. DI FAZIO: I don't think you need be alarmed by that list. I

18 may even not use that. I do that to actually cover myself just in case I

19 want to.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: As you see, Mr. Di Fazio and Mr. Jones, and the

21 rest, we use our discretion. We distinguish between one witness and the

22 other, and put our foot down where we need to. Otherwise, we don't. So

23 let's bring the witness in, please.

24 He may have gone home already.

25 [The witness entered court]

Page 13079


2 [Witness answered through interpreter]

3 Examined by Ms. Vidovic: [Continued]

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, Mr. Ademovic. I hope the

5 earphones are in good functioning order and that you are receiving

6 interpretation.

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours. Thank

8 you. Yes. I am receiving interpretation.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Your testimony will continue very soon, and it is

10 always in terms of the solemn declaration that you made before you started

11 giving evidence on the first day. I'm just reminding you of that.

12 Ms. Vidovic will finish with her examination-in-chief. She is

13 going to do her utmost to finish the earliest possible and then

14 Mr. Di Fazio will take you up for cross-examination and hopefully finish

15 by tomorrow. Thank you.

16 Madam Vidovic.

17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

18 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Ademovic, as you heard we are pressed for time

19 and I ask you wherever possible to answer request a yes or no or just with

20 a brief answer, thank you.

21 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could I have the usher's assistance

22 in showing the witness a document by the command of the Drina Corps, a new

23 document which is called "request for assistance and engagement of

24 appropriate unit." This is a Drina Corps command document addressed to

25 the commander of the eastern Bosnia corps bearing the following number,

Page 13080

1 04293309.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: While this is being distributed, Madam Vidovic and

3 Mr. Wubben, and the rest of the staff, we have succeeded in moving

4 tomorrow's sitting from the afternoon to the morning. I just received a

5 confirmation of it now. I take it that -- I mean, I gave instructions

6 that this is only confirmed after that I have the consent of everybody.

7 So I'm just informing you that tomorrow morning, we will have a sitting

8 from 9.00 until quarter to 2.00 rather than in the afternoon. All right?

9 Thank you.

10 [Trial chamber and registrar confer]

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Your question, Ms. Vidovic. The document has

12 been distributed.

13 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

14 Q. Witness, first of all, please look at the date of the document,

15 26th of December 1992. I will quote a small portion of the document. In

16 the first part of the document, it is stated, "Please help us physically

17 defend Bratunac town by engaging your unit under Mauzer's command. We

18 believe that the engagement of his unit would be most effectively carried

19 out along the Milici-Rogac-Lipenovici-Martinci-Kravica-Bratunac operation

20 axis. By using this axis we would achieve the following. We would

21 separate the enemy forces of Srebrenica and Konjevic Polje. We would

22 surround the enemy forces in the Glogova mountain sector, Halilovici and

23 Velika Glogova villages and we would lift the blockade of Bratunac town to

24 the west."

25 Here is my brief question for you. The axis described herein the

Page 13081

1 Milici-Rogac-Lipenovici-Martinci-Kravica-Bratunac axis, how far apart is

2 that from Bratunac, if you know?

3 A. 15 kilometres is Kravica, Kravica, and the

4 Milici-Rogac-Lipenovici-Martinci some 20 kilometres away from Bratunac.

5 However, the entire area is contiguous to the area under my control.

6 Q. Therefore, Lipenovici-Martinci-Kravica, have I understood you

7 well? You meant that these were the villages that neighboured your

8 territory?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. In late December 1992, did you find out about the arrival of new,

11 fresh Serbian forces from different directions to the area of Kravica?

12 A. Yes. Over my Motorola.

13 Q. Did you learn about the arrival of Mauzer and perhaps some other

14 units?

15 A. Yes, Mauzer and Krajisnik.

16 Q. Thank you.

17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, could this document be

18 assigned a number.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly, Madam Vidovic, this document will

20 become Defence Exhibit D853. It consists of one page in B/C/S with ERN

21 04293309, and two pages in English. Thank you.

22 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I wish to correct the

23 transcript. The witness said "Yes, the arrival of Mauzer, and

24 Krajisniks." That can be found 14.34.14. Is that the eighth line? The

25 8th line, 14.34.14.

Page 13082

1 JUDGE AGIUS: The question was, "Did you learn about the arrival

2 of Mauzer and perhaps some other units?", and the answer as it appears on

3 the transcript says "Yes, Mauzer and Krajisnik." What did you --

4 something wrong here, it seems. What did you answer to that question,

5 Mr. Ademovic?

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Mauzer and units of the Krajina

7 men, therefore units from the Krajina area, Western Bosnia. The part

8 around Banja Luka to be more specific.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: That was necessary because Krajisnik has got

10 different connotations inside the four walls of this Tribunal.

11 Yes, Madam Vidovic?

12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you could the usher please

13 show the witness the document by the Main Staff of the Republika Srpska

14 army dated 5 January 1993? The document was signed by the assistant

15 commander for logistics, Major General Djordje Djukic bearing the number

16 04261922. I will briefly quote from the document.

17 "The Main Staff of the army of Republika Srpska," and it says

18 "sent to the Drina Corps command." "By monitoring the conception of

19 ammunition from your daily logistics reports of 1st January 1993, 2nd

20 January, and 3rd January 1993, we have established that on these three

21 days, you used enormous quantities of certain types of ammunition. For

22 example, consumption of 7.6-millimetre bullets for automatic rifles alone

23 was 256.000 in the above three days, in brackets, which is the equivalent

24 of the total researches of this type in the 27th POB. In view of the

25 situation with ammunition reserves at our disposal, such a rate of

Page 13083

1 consumption is unsustainable. Serious attention should be paid to that."

2 Mr. Ademovic, is it true or not that the Drina Corps covered the

3 area of Podrinje.

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. To the best of your knowledge, in early January 1993, the three

6 days mentioned in the document, namely 1st, 2nd and 3rd January, where

7 were the combat activities of the Drina Corps focused?

8 A. The areas of Susnjari, Brezevo Polje, Jaglici, Glogova, and the

9 region of Krivic [phoen] Polje. You can see what the consumption of

10 ammunition was and how high it was according to this document. For

11 instance, the consumption of 7.6-millimetre bullets, this document refers

12 to only one calibre, whereas at that period, we were being attacked by all

13 types of weaponry available, infantry weapons, artillery, and aviation.

14 Q. Witness the 256.000 bullets only refer to the ammunition of the

15 automatic rifles, is that true?

16 A. Yes, and only to the 1-calibre type of ammunition.

17 Q. Thank you.

18 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could this document please be

19 assigned a number, Your Honours.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. This document will become Defence Exhibit

21 D854, consists of two pages, one in English, one in Serbo-Croat, reference

22 number ERN number 04261922.

23 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

24 Q. In connection with this, Mr. Ademovic, I will ask you as follows:

25 Is it not true that the Serbs in this particular period, and I'm referring

Page 13084

1 to this several days in early January, were carrying out an extensive

2 offensive in the entire area of Susnjari, Bret -- Cizic [phoen] Polje,

3 Jaglici and Glogova?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. What was your personal reaction to that? I mean you personally.

6 And those who were with you in Susnjari?

7 A. I got in touch with the leaders of my groups and I deployed my men

8 wherever I could in order for them to let everyone know what was in store

9 for us that we were practically going to be destroyed.

10 Q. I just want to clarify one matter. Here it is stated "I got in

11 touch with the leaders of my groups." Which groups?

12 A. The groups that were nearby in Jaglici and Brezova Njiva. Those

13 were the areas under my command.

14 Q. When you say "my groups," does it mean that they fell under your

15 command or not?

16 A. No. In my area.

17 Q. You're referring to the adjacent groups to yours?

18 A. Yes, Jaglici and Brezova Njiva.

19 Q. What was going on during the night between the 6th and the 7th

20 January 1993 or were you able to listen in to the Serbian communications?

21 A. Yes. In the course of the afternoon on the 6th and in the course

22 of the night between the 6th and the 7th as I was listening into their

23 communications I realised that they were preparing for a large-scale

24 offensive and that the people in Glogova were in harm's way. According to

25 the information I heard, the thrust of the attack was to be directed at

Page 13085

1 Glogova from the direction of Bratunac, and Jelavci [phoen].

2 Q. Very well. Tell you what -- tell us what you did next.

3 A. Since some of the groups that were nearby were informed, we had

4 the leaders of the group from Milacevici, Brosevici, and the adjacent

5 group in Jaglici and Brezova Njiva arriving to our aid. They realised

6 that unless something is done, we are going to be wiped out. New refugees

7 were imminent and that is why we decided that we should do something about

8 it.

9 Q. Who took this decision?

10 A. All of us, including myself.

11 Q. Did you set out in some direction and where?

12 A. Yes. Across Djermani towards Jezestica, not because it was

13 Christmas and because these religious holidays were not to be respected

14 but for different reasons, namely we knew that on that particular day,

15 they were going to be drunk and less careful. Another reason was that a

16 column of several thousand refugees from Glogova were in danger of total

17 extermination and also because in my region there were several thousand

18 refugees who were starving. Therefore, the third reason was the food.

19 Q. Mr. Ademovic, now you indicated the reasons behind such a

20 decision; is that right?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Tell us, did you set out in the direction of Jezestica and how

23 many of you were there in the group?

24 A. Yes, we set out at about 10.00 and there were a total of around 50

25 of us.

Page 13086

1 Q. Were you armed?

2 A. Yes. We were armed. We had nothing to lose. We would have died

3 either way.

4 Q. At what time did you arrive in the area of Jezestica?

5 A. Across to Djermani and into Stara Jezestica I arrived at around

6 10.00 and I saw --

7 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter is not sure of the time.

8 A. Where I saw a number of people who were fighting over a corn cob.

9 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation].

10 Q. Did you know where these civilians were from?

11 A. No. I didn't know them.

12 Q. Did you stay while in Jezestica or did you move on?

13 A. Yes, we moved on to Karici but it was difficult to advance because

14 there was shooting still and, upon our arrival in Kajici, intense shelling

15 started upon the entire area. We already came upon injured and wounded

16 and even dead civilians. Some of my soldiers were also injured, and we

17 could hardly advance because we will to take certain measures.

18 Q. Mr. Ademovic, let me ask you the following. The interpreter did

19 not catch the time you mentioned as the time of arrival in Jezestica.

20 A. At around 10.00, 10.00 in the morning.

21 Q. Can you tell us at what time did you arrive in the area of

22 Kravica?

23 A. In the afternoon hours, sometime after 12.00 p.m., because we were

24 advancing slowly. I had several men who were wounded. And we were under

25 intense shelling from the Serb forces from the direction of Rogac.

Page 13087












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 13088

1 Q. Was the shelling also directed at Kajici?

2 A. Yes, I've already stated that already in Kajici several of my men

3 were wounded, some of them seriously, some lightly, and even some

4 civilians were wounded.

5 Q. Was that the reason why you stopped there?

6 A. Yes. That but also the -- because the approach road was very

7 difficult to pass. It was in and around Kravica that the fighting was

8 going on from all sorts of infantry weapons. Q. Upon Kravica or from

9 Kravica?

10 A. No, no. From Kravica, from houses, from the school, from the

11 warehouses.

12 Q. Very well. As far as I've understood what you were saying you did

13 not go into Kravica, did you?

14 A. No.

15 Q. Let us leave Kravica for a while. I want to turn to some other

16 issues now. Is it not true that very soon you received information that

17 you had to return to your area because of a counterattack?

18 A. Yes. Some of the men from my group remained at Ravni Buljim.

19 That's the elevation point 820. From where -- which was constantly under

20 attack from the area of Rogac. That was my area. That was constantly

21 under artillery and infantry fire. And the attack against that area

22 intensified.

23 Q. In the subsequent days after the 7th of January 1993, did you have

24 any information to the effect that the civilians were leaving your area to

25 go in the direction of Kravica?

Page 13089

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Did they -- did some of them get killed over there?

3 A. Yes. There was intense shelling upon the civilians and many of

4 them were massacred.

5 Q. Did you try to prevent them from going there?

6 A. Yes. Having been aware of what was going on there, and besides

7 one could see that for himself, despite that, they were hungry, they could

8 not be dissuaded and even if one tried to dissuade them, they stayed

9 there, lingered on, and found different reasons why they had to go out in

10 search of food. The most imminent reason being that they don't want to

11 watch their children starve.

12 Q. Very well. We will go back to Kravica later on, if time will

13 allow us. I just want to show you some documents now.

14 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the usher show the witness

15 Prosecution Exhibit 290?

16 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction, P80.

17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

18 Q. This is the document by the staff of the armed forces of

19 Srebrenica, 19 September 1993, and that's the delivery of the information

20 on the breakdown of the formation structure of Srebrenica armed forces

21 during the past period. And under item 1 it's stated on 20th May 1992,

22 the Srebrenica TO staff was formed in Bajramovici. From 17 April 1992 to

23 mid-October 1992 the first regional units were formed under the auspices

24 of the TO of a regional character therefore.

25 I would like to dwell on this for a while. Mr. Ademovic, first of

Page 13090

1 all, in May 1992, were you aware of a meeting in Bajramovici where the

2 Srebrenica TO staff was formed?

3 A. No. I've heard about this for the first time in Nijaz Masic's

4 book or, rather, I read it there for the first time.

5 Q. Very well. Do you know whether some of the local group leaders

6 from Jaglici and Brezova Njiva attended the meeting?

7 A. No. They were my neighbours and I was in touch with them.

8 Q. Very well. Until October 1992, in relation to your groups, did

9 you use the term Territorial Defence on the ground?

10 A. No. These were the groups or units, as people said later on. In

11 essence they were groups of people from Susnjari, Jaglici. There was a

12 group from Brezova Njiva, a group from Slatina, and so on.

13 Q. When you talked about these units among yourselves, how would you

14 refer to other groups, for example?

15 A. I used to say Zulfo's men, Sidik's men, and so on.

16 Q. In the period from the beginning of the war, until October 1992,

17 were you active as part of Potocari?

18 A. No, independently, in my area of Susnjari, because I was

19 physically cut off and it was not possible.

20 Q. The transcript reads "as part of Potocari." Did you understand me

21 to mean were you part of any military formation, any part of a group in

22 Potocari?

23 A. No.

24 Q. Did anyone from Potocari --

25 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous interpretation continues] ... because this

Page 13091

1 only made it worse actually.

2 When Madam Vidovic asked you the question in the period from the

3 beginning of the war until October 1992, whether you were active as part

4 of Potocari, what did you understand? What did you understand her to

5 mean, to be asking you?

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understood the question to mean

7 whether I was in the composition of Potocari, if I understood it properly.

8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, that was what I asked.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: But when you further asked about whether -- did you

10 understand me to mean -- and he answered "no." So it had to be clarified

11 because as it was, it could have -- I mean we would have understood it

12 just the same but you never know whether we will still be here when the

13 case is decided. So let's proceed.

14 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I hope you will.

15 Q. Witness, you understood us to be discussing whether up to

16 demilitarisation anyone from Potocari was your commander?

17 A. No. What I've been saying all along is that I was independent and

18 that I was not in the composition of Potocari.

19 Q. Did you write reports to anyone throughout 1992 and all the way up

20 to the demilitarisation in 1993?

21 A. No.

22 Q. Did you receive orders or instructions from anyone?

23 A. No. Throughout 1992, all the way up to the demilitarisation, the

24 answer is no.

25 Q. Now, please take a look at this document, which reads, "TO

Page 13092

1 Potocari." Look at some of the names on this list. For example, the

2 Peciste company, "Peciste company," it says here, "Nasir Sabanovic,

3 commander." I want to ask you the following: From the 20th of May 1992

4 until mid-October 1992, were there any companies on the ground in the

5 military sense?

6 A. No. There were only groups. There was no Peciste company. This

7 village was depopulated.

8 Q. Do you know anything about Nasir Sabanovic?

9 A. It says here "commander." He was never a commander. I know him

10 well from peace time. He's from a place called Podcaus in Bratunac and

11 for two or three months he was a refugee in Caus in the Sase and Bratunac

12 area. He couldn't have been a commander. And this did not exist.

13 Q. Thank you. A little lower down it says, Budak company, commander

14 Ibrahim Mandzic. Before October 1992, did Budak have any kind of corporal

15 makes. Explain to Their Honours where it is and what it is, exactly?

16 A. Budak is physically adjacent to Bratunac at the exit point of

17 Bratunac. And in that period of time, there were no people there because

18 every house had been leveled to the ground.

19 Q. Thank you. Now look at what it says Susnjari company. It says 59

20 military conscripts. How do you comment on this?

21 A. There were not that many women or children, let alone men, in my

22 village.

23 Q. And were there any refugees in your group?

24 A. No. This was a voluntary group. As I said, my group had 25 lads.

25 As for this number here, 95, well, I can't tell lies.

Page 13093

1 Q. Up to October 1992, were you under the command of Naser Oric whom

2 you know well?

3 A. No. I was independent, a group leader.

4 Q. Throughout 1992, did you have areas of responsibility in the

5 military sense of the word, established on the ground?

6 A. We didn't know about areas of responsibility in the military

7 sense. We didn't even know what this was about. We each had our

8 territorial area where we were active, as I was in the area of Susnjari,

9 Jaglici, and Brezova Njiva. However, the military sense of the word area

10 of responsibility is something else. I think Their Honours know.

11 Q. Does this document then contain correct information?

12 A. No. This is quite contrary to the truth, to reality, that is.

13 Q. You -- we mentioned demilitarisation. Can you explain what this

14 meant for your group?

15 A. Demilitarisation in the true sense of the word, means the

16 cessation of all activities having to do with combat activities or any

17 other military activities. For my group, demilitarisation meant the

18 cessation of all activities and all 25 of my lads, including myself, we

19 all handed in our weapons as required by the UN representatives who had

20 come into my terrain.

21 Q. And what did the activity of the army consist of? What was it

22 reduced to in these conditions of demilitarisation?

23 A. Only filling in forms on paper, relating to military conscripts,

24 and other kinds of information. There was nothing active going on.

25 MR. DI FAZIO: Excuse me, if Your Honours please, what army is the

Page 13094

1 witness referring to? It's not clear to me.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. If you think it needs clarification,

3 Madam Vidovic can address that.

4 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] The witness said -- replied,

5 Your Honour, but it's not in the record. I think he was referring to

6 Tuzla, and it could be heard. I will repeat the question to you.

7 Q. To what were the activities of what remained under

8 demilitarisation after demilitarisation reduced? And you mentioned Tuzla.

9 Could you repeat your answer?

10 A. It was reduced to listing military-able men, making lists, putting

11 people on lists. These were technical, administrative matters.

12 Q. Just a moment --

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Please, I do need a confirmation from him that he

14 had mentioned Tuzla before.

15 MR. DI FAZIO: I didn't hear it.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: You are not following in B/C/S like I am not

17 following in B/C/S. That's why I want a confirmation, because it has been

18 suggested by Ms. Vidovic and I have no reason to doubt her word but I do

19 want a confirmation from him. After the demilitarisation, which army are

20 we talking about? Or you were talking about?

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know what you understood me

22 to say. It wasn't an army. It was a list of military-able men. Their

23 names were put down on paper, on paper. These were technical matters.

24 Putting down on paper. It was nothing to do with an army.

25 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I see now what led to

Page 13095

1 the confusion. I in fact asked what military activities were taking place

2 after the demilitarisation. My question was misinterpreted. What

3 activities of troops, soldiers, army happened? My question was

4 misinterpreted.

5 Q. Witness, what were the remaining military activities, if any, on

6 the ground? That's what evidently led to confusion.

7 A. I understood you quite well, and that's what I replied. Technical

8 matters. No military activities. In the military sense, a list of

9 military-able men. That is administration, no military activity.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: But did you at any time mention Tuzla in this

11 context?

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: In which context? This is what we need to know so

14 that we close this chapter.

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These were these technical matters

16 that were ordered after the demilitarisation, to put on paper.

17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

18 Q. And where did these instructions come from?

19 A. From Tuzla. From Tuzla because they didn't accept us as legal

20 soldiers.

21 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I suggest that during

22 the break, Mr. Di Fazio and I listen to the recording, part of the

23 recording, and you will hear what -- that what I have just described was

24 said. And the witness has repeated it.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: If Mr. Di Fazio is interested in that, because I

Page 13096

1 don't think we are interested.

2 MR. DI FAZIO: No, I'm not -- with all due respect to

3 Madam Vidovic, I think everything has been explained to me and I'll deal

4 with this in cross-examination.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you.

6 Yes, Ms. Vidovic.

7 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Very well.

8 Q. Let me ask you, did you know of the existence of a Paket

9 connection with Tuzla when you arrived in Srebrenica?

10 A. Yes, I learned about it when I came to Srebrenica and that's

11 precisely what this related to, what I've just said, the Paket

12 communications.

13 Q. Did you hear about an order to form the 8th operations group?

14 A. No.

15 Q. You have not heard of such an order. Have you heard of the

16 formation of a large military unit in early 1994?

17 A. Yes, I did hear about it but it only dealt with technical matters.

18 It was just putting down on paper. They insisted that we put these units

19 down on paper.

20 Q. What you are trying to say is that it did not exist on the ground

21 but only on paper?

22 A. Yes. That's what I've been saying all along. After the

23 demilitarisation, there was nothing on the ground. It was all only on

24 paper, because they refused to accept us as legal members of the army of

25 Bosnia-Herzegovina. So we had to deal with these technical matters on

Page 13097

1 paper. There was no activity on the ground.

2 Q. Just a moment, sir. Did you become a member of some such unit on

3 paper, on the ground?

4 A. Yes. The 280th Brigade.

5 Q. Were you assigned some kind of duty at that time?

6 A. Yes. I was told that I had been assigned some kind of duty but I

7 never received any document concerning that.

8 Q. What duty was that?

9 A. Allegedly they said I was assistant commander for security and

10 then assistant to the commander for morale but I was never that. I've

11 never even saw that.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Di Fazio?

13 MR. DI FAZIO: Sorry, Your Honours, just a clarification that I

14 suggest needs to be made for you to understand this evidence - excuse me -

15 that the witness said "they refused to accept us as legal members of the

16 army of" --


18 MR. DI FAZIO: I'm not quite sure, I don't know if it's clear to

19 you. It's not clear to me whether the witness is referring to "they" as

20 being the army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. I think it's

21 important to know because this is what this whole issue turns on, so --

22 JUDGE AGIUS: I didn't quite understand it like that.

23 But perhaps you can put the question direct to the witness so that

24 he can answer.

25 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

Page 13098












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13 English transcripts.













Page 13099

1 Q. Who did not want to accept you as legal members of the army of

2 Bosnia and Herzegovina?

3 A. In those documents and instructions, that arrived in -- from Tuzla

4 through those Paket communications, if we did not fill in those forms,

5 they would not accept us and recognise us as members of the army of Bosnia

6 and Herzegovina because we were physically cut off from them and not

7 connected to them, and they sent those instructions through those

8 communications.

9 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we will now look at a

10 specific document which will clarify this.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, let's proceed.

12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] We shall clarify this through two

13 documents and I think it will become clear then.

14 Q. Did you participate in listing those units on paper?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. When you put down that group on paper, what did you personally

17 call it?

18 A. I called it the Susnjari unit.

19 Q. And what happened after that? Let's take it step by step. So you

20 write it down, and you send it through Paket communications to Tuzla, and

21 you write down Susnjari unit. What happens in Tuzla?

22 A. In Tuzla they reject that name for the unit and they say that the

23 units are not to be listed by village. Instead, they send us instructions

24 that we have to use military terminology to name the units.

25 Q. Thank you very much.

Page 13100

1 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Would the usher now show the witness

2 a document? This is a document by the 2nd Corps command of the army of

3 the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina dated 24th of February 1994, bearing

4 the following title: "Appointments and proposals for appointments.

5 Warning." Below one can see that it was delivered to the 8th OG and so on

6 and so forth.

7 Q. Witness, I will quote item 3 of the document. The telegram is

8 signed by a commander, Brigadier Hazim Sadic. First of all I want to ask

9 you the following. Do you know who Hazim Sadic was in 1994?

10 A. Yes. He was commander of the 2nd Corps based in Tuzla.

11 Q. Very well. In connection with this, I will read out item 3 of the

12 document. And I quote: "In the future, no appointment proposal shall be

13 taken into consideration if it is not in accordance with the temporary war

14 formations which means that you must urgently restructure all

15 non-formation compositions and positions, and fit them within the

16 framework of the existing war formations."

17 Are you familiar with the contents of this document?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Is this what you were referring to, that you adopted one thing and

20 then those from Tuzla would instruct you that it was not possible, that

21 this could not be called Susnjari unit but some -- that a military term

22 should be used?

23 A. Yes. In fact, Your Honours, I told you that I wanted the unit to

24 be called the Susnjari unit and they wrote back by saying that we should

25 have a company, a platoon, a military term, and this is precisely what I

Page 13101

1 had in mind when I was talking earlier on.

2 Q. Mr. Ademovic, is this the only such document that you set eyes on

3 or did you perhaps receive several such documents?

4 A. We received several of them.

5 Q. Thank you. Having received these warnings from Tuzla, did you act

6 in practice in compliance with these instructions?

7 A. Yes.

8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, could this document

9 please be assigned a number.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: This document will become Defence Exhibit D855. It

11 consists of two pages, one in English and one B/C/S, and the ERN number is

12 01838420.

13 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

14 Q. Were you aware of the fact that the people from Srebrenica, after

15 the demilitarisation, filled out applications for active military duty?

16 A. Yes, I've heard something about it.

17 Q. In filling out these forms, did the people have to comply with the

18 instructions received from the 2nd Corps command and use military terms

19 for the names of the units rather than their own?

20 A. Yes. This is precisely what we were discussing earlier on.

21 Q. Yes.

22 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] I would now like the usher to show

23 another new exhibit to the witness. Could the witness be shown the

24 document 01837831? This is a request for admission into the active

25 military service with the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Page 13102

1 Q. Please take a look at this document. Do you agree that I showed

2 you this document during proofing?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Please look at the part of the document bearing the signature.

5 Did you sign this document?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Please look at the page bearing your signature, where it is

8 stated, "The date of entry into service with the army of

9 Bosnia-Herzegovina." There is the official organ you applied to and you

10 wrote 18th of March 1992, the date of establishment of the Susnjari unit.

11 Did you write this down?

12 A. Yes. That was the day when I placed myself at the -- at their

13 disposal.

14 Q. Fine. 18th of March 1992, when the Susnjari unit was established

15 and when I was chosen as its commander, and therefore the date I placed

16 myself at the army's disposal, 18th of March -- 18th of April 1992. Can I

17 ask you the following? Were you a member of the army of

18 Bosnia-Herzegovina as of that date or were you recognised as its member at

19 a later date?

20 A. No. I was not recognised as being a member as of that date

21 because my unit, the Susnjari unit we referred to earlier on, was not

22 recognised as such, and I had to sort the matter out retroactively, even

23 through an administrative procedure.

24 Q. Now that you mentioned the administrative procedure, is it not

25 true that the people arriving from Srebrenica had to, after 1995, prove

Page 13103

1 that they had participated in armed combat and that there were members of

2 the army in large numbers?

3 A. Yes. There were thousands of such administrative procedures.

4 Some of them are still pending today. I had to personally attest for each

5 and every one of the members of my group, that they were members, active

6 members, because we were not recognised as such.

7 Q. Please stop there. Can you look at this questionnaire? Did the

8 military authorities accept this questionnaire as valid and admit you into

9 the military service on the basis of it?

10 A. No. They did not accept the document bearing this particular

11 title, and they did not admit me into service on the basis of this

12 document.

13 Q. Did they ask you to draft another document?

14 A. Yes. But I refused to do so and I was never a member of the army

15 later on, and I was engaged in the business in which I'm engaged in to

16 this day.

17 Q. You refused to do so because you wished to remain in the police;

18 isn't that right?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Very well.

21 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the usher please show the

22 Witness P95?

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. We need to give this a number.

24 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, thank you, Your Honour.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: That will become Defence Exhibit D856, and it

Page 13104

1 consists of, in the B/C/S, pages starting with ERN number 01837831. Is it

2 8 or 6, the third number? I'm not quite sure whether it's 8 or 6. 8,

3 according to the English translation, then, it's 8. Right through and

4 inclusive of ERN 01837834. That's four pages, and the corresponding

5 translation into English consisting of six pages. And that will be D856.

6 Thank you.

7 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

8 Q. You have the document before you. Please turn to page 6, to save

9 time. This is allegedly a document by the 8th operations group command.

10 Please turn to page 6. And you will see that this section has to do with

11 the 280th East Bosnian Light Brigade.

12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this is page 5 in the

13 English text.

14 Q. Next, please turn to page 9. Item 4, which in English is page 7.

15 There are names of commanders and -- names of commanders and other

16 senior officers since the formation until 31st January 1994, sixth line

17 from the bottom in Bosnian, it is stated, "assistant commander for morale,

18 in brigade from 2nd December 1992, to 10 January, 1994, Sidik Ademovic."

19 Apart from you in the area was there another Sidik Ademovic who could be

20 placed in connection with the 280th Brigade?

21 A. No.

22 Q. Would you please, or rather once again, it is stated here that the

23 assistant commander for morale in the brigade from 2nd December 1992 to 10

24 January 1994, could you tell the Trial Chamber where were you on the 2nd

25 of December 1992 and throughout December 1992?

Page 13105

1 A. According to my earlier testimony, the entire month of December

2 and onwards, I was in the area of Susnjari.

3 Q. In the fighting that took place at the time?

4 A. Yes. I believe that suffices.

5 Q. Very well. Was there a brigade in place at the time? Were you a

6 member of a brigade on the 2nd of December 1992?

7 A. No. On the 2nd of December I had only that one group that I have

8 been referring to throughout my testimony.

9 Q. In your career, were you ever an assistant to the commander for

10 morale?

11 A. Well, this is not really pertinent for the sort of business I'm

12 involved in.

13 Q. Please look at page 11. It says "written commendation of the

14 commander of the armed forces of Srebrenica for -- on the occasion of the

15 first anniversary of the staff."

16 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I believe the witness's

17 answer was a bit different from the answer recorded here. Were you in

18 your career ever an assistant to the commander? He stated that this would

19 "not be compatible with the work that I do," and not perhaps "pertinent

20 to the sort of business I'm involved with."

21 Q. Please, tell us what did you really mean to say when you were

22 answering my question whether ever in your career you were assistant to

23 the commander for morale?

24 A. No, never, never, because the sort of work I do is not related to

25 that, and I never was an assistant commander for morale.

Page 13106

1 Q. Please look -- turn to the middle of the page. Among the names of

2 the persons, recipients of this certificate of merit, there is the name of

3 Sidik Ademovic. Can you tell us whether you ever received a written

4 certificate of merit from Naser Oric?

5 A. No, never.

6 Q. You didn't receive a written or an oral credit?

7 A. No, not even a verbal or a written or a pecuniary or any other

8 sort of a credit.

9 Q. You said that you were a member of this 280th Brigade on paper in

10 early 1994, and you were told that you were supposed to discharge the

11 duties of the assistant commander for morale. Can you tell us what were

12 you doing and where you were in the course of 1994?

13 A. Demilitarisation meant rest for me. I was in my village of

14 Susnjari, at home, at my parents' home, doing farm work. That was our

15 only source of income.

16 Q. Thank you.

17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the usher please show the

18 witness a new exhibit? This is a document by the command of the 8th

19 operations group Srebrenica dated 9 September 1994. Weekly report by

20 Nedzad Bektic. And the document bears the number 02103048.

21 Q. Witness, please turn to page 2. And I will quote the words of

22 Mr. Bektic according to this document, what is contained on page 2 under

23 C. "The work of the commands and their cooperation is unsatisfactory. In

24 the beginning of the week, an assessment of the security situation was

25 sent to the 2nd Corps. The assessment was not done by organs of security.

Page 13107

1 The command of the 282nd Brigade, the commander had left the duty wilfully

2 and has not been discharging the duty for two months, without having been

3 released and a new person appointed.

4 "In the command of the 281st Brigade, the Chief of Staff, Zulfo

5 Salihovic, has been working as the president of the SDA party since April.

6 In the same Brigade, the assistant commander for morale, Abdic Hajrudin,

7 resides in Srebrenica and appears in the unit only rarely, and he never

8 comes to the meetings of the assistant commander for moral in the command.

9 The assistant commander for security of 282nd Brigade, Abdul Jovic, and

10 281st Brigade, they have been furnishing incomplete reports, not

11 reflecting the situation in the unit. They failed to produce and deliver

12 a weekly report. The commander -- the assistant commander for morale,

13 Sidik Ademovic," and so on and so forth. Is this your name?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Please look at --

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop, stop, stop.

17 Madam Usher, just to -- wait, wait, just don't move anything.

18 Is this the only part of there document that you have shown on the

19 ELMO or did you show also the first page? Only this part. All right.

20 Let's go into private session for a while, please.

21 [Private session]

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 13108











11 Page 13108 redacted. Private session.















Page 13109












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13 English transcripts.













Page 13110

1 (redacted)

2 (redacted)

3 (redacted)

4 (redacted)

5 (redacted)

6 (redacted)

7 (redacted)

8 (redacted)

9 (redacted)

10 (redacted)

11 (redacted)

12 (redacted)

13 (redacted)

14 [Open session]

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Before we continue, this document, which will

16 become Exhibit -- Defence Exhibit D857, will be preserved under seal. It

17 consists of two pages in B/C/S -- sorry, three pages in B/C/S, and two

18 pages in English, and with a sequential ERN number from 02103048 right

19 flew and inclusive of ERN number 02103052. All right? Thank you. So

20 Judge Eser has a question and Madam Registrar has a problem.

21 [Trial chamber and registrar confer]

22 JUDGE AGIUS: So this document, which has just been made use of

23 with this witness, is going to become Defence Exhibit D857, and because of

24 its contents, it will be kept and stored under seal. In consists of two

25 pages -- three pages in B/C/S and two pages in English, all five pages are

Page 13111

1 enumerated sequentially with ERN number 02103048 right through and

2 inclusive of ERN 02103052.

3 Yes, Judge Eser has a question -- I was going to say has a

4 problem.

5 JUDGE ESER: No, I have no problem. Just a matter of

6 clarification of the language. I have realised that when you asked the

7 witness a question or read from the exhibit, it was translated "assistant

8 commander for morale," but if I go to the English translation, it speaks

9 of "assistant commander for security." Now, in my understanding, morale

10 and security are different things. Now, what is the meaning in B/C/S? Is

11 it more in terms of morale or in terms of security?

12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, will you please tell me

13 what part of the document you're referring to? Because Abdic Hajrudin,

14 commander for morale is mentioned as well as Mr. Sidik Ademovic, commander

15 for security. Which part of the document is Your Honour referring to?

16 JUDGE ESER: Referring to what you have just read. If you go to

17 the English translation which is the ERN number which ends with 052, you

18 ever assistant commander and it would say "for security."

19 JUDGE AGIUS: It's the only line which has highlighting.

20 JUDGE ESER: Yes. And the same with the other two persons you

21 mentioned here. It doesn't speak of morale but security.

22 MR. DI FAZIO: If Your Honours please, in the B/C/S it's on 3049

23 and the word is [B/C/S spoken] I believe.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: [B/C/S spoken]

25 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. That's the word I think we are concerned

Page 13112

1 about.


3 JUDGE ESER: Exactly. What is the meaning of this B/C/S term

4 [B/C/S spoken].

5 JUDGE AGIUS: The thing is this. I think the point raised by my

6 colleague Judge Eser is very valid because if you look at the same

7 document a few lines before, with regard to Hajrudin Avdic, you will see

8 that you will have [B/C/S spoken]. Further down, you have [B/C/S spoken].

9 So I take it that one means morale, the other one means security, as per

10 the translation that we have. And very rightly. So perhaps an

11 explanation is appropriate.

12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, let me just look at

13 exactly what it says in the Bosnian version. This is a translation we

14 received from the Prosecutor's office, and I have not had an opportunity

15 to check it because we have only just received it. However, I will read

16 out exactly what it says about Mr. Hajrudin Avdic: "In the same Brigade,

17 the assistant commander for morale or moral guidance, Avdic, Hajrudin

18 lives in Srebrenica and turns up in the unit very rarely. And as for

19 meetings, at the assistant commandment -- commanders for the morale in the

20 operations group, he hardly ever comes there. Assistants of the commander

21 for security" - these are other people now - "of the 281st Brigade,

22 Abdulah Ahmetovic, and the 282nd, Suad Smajlovic sent incomplete reports,

23 thus covering up the real situation in the unit. The weekly report for

24 this period has not been done by them or delivered." This is -- and then

25 it says, assistant commander for security of the 280th, Sidik Ademovic.

Page 13113

1 That's what it says in the original. "Assistant commander for security of

2 the 280th, Abdulah Ahmetovic, assistant commander for security, Azmir

3 Golic, of the SVB." That's what it says in the original.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. It's -- the clarification that we need now

5 is this: Was Sidik Ademovic, that's the witness, assistant ever -- ever

6 assistant commander for morale, as has been suggested some time back, or

7 was he actually or supposedly assistant commander for security, as seems

8 to show -- as seems to appear from this document? This is basically what

9 the clarification that we require because so far it has been suggested to

10 the witness that he may or may not have been assistant commander for

11 morale or moral guidance.

12 MR. JONES: If I may be of some assistance, Your Honour, because

13 the fact is, in P95 there is reference to assistant commander for morale

14 and assistant commander for security. So there were two separate posts

15 which the witness was asked about and which he answered. So the reference

16 to morale before wasn't a mistake or an error. In this document it's

17 simply security and I think will be -- that -- we can deal with that per

18 this document.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: Are you satisfied with that? Oh, yes, let's go on

20 then.

21 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, please, I put the

22 question to Mr. Ademovic very clearly, and Your Honours, with all due

23 respect, I really sometimes cannot understand some questions of part of

24 the Chamber. With all due respect, I asked Mr. Sidik Ademovic very

25 clearly, "In your entire career, why you ever an assistant commander for

Page 13114

1 morale?" He said "No." Then I moved on to another document which very

2 clearly deals with what he's talking about now, that on paper he was the

3 assistant commander for security.

4 So believe me I myself am confused now and it's very hard for me

5 to follow my own questions because the witness answered quite clearly and

6 now this is confusing for me, let alone for the witness. Now I understand

7 that Judge Eser is referring to two different documents. One document is

8 something I've dealt with and the witness has clearly stated that never in

9 his lifer was he an assistant commander for morale and now I have very

10 important questions about this other document that we are dealing with

11 now. I do respect the Court. I was a judge myself for 14 years. But

12 sometimes I really need to say that I fail to understand Your Honour's

13 questions. I do apologise, Your Honours.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's proceed. Let's proceed.

15 JUDGE ESER: Just to make it clear, if you look to the transcript,

16 page 29, line 4, it was within your question that you formulated, the

17 commander, the assistant commander for morale, Sidik Ademovic, line 4,

18 that's what I was referring to. It was your language, assistant commander

19 for morale. You find it in the transcript, at least in the English one.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's -- let's move because we need to finish.

21 Yes, Ms. Vidovic.

22 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm sorry, I cannot

23 follow the transcript. I do believe there are mistakes in the transcript.

24 I cannot look at both the document and the transcript. But however that

25 may be.

Page 13115

1 Q. Mr. Ademovic, we were discussing this document and now I will put

2 a question in connection with it.

3 If you look at the part on page 02103049, it says here "the work

4 of the commands and cooperation with the commands is unsatisfactory," and

5 the date of the document is the 9th of September 1994. Do you agree with

6 what is stated in this document, that the work of the commands and

7 cooperation with them during 1994 was unsatisfactory?

8 A. I fully agree, this is the time when there was demilitarisation

9 and there was no work going on, and you could see.

10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Ademovic.

11 A. I apologise.

12 Q. The document goes on to say that, when evaluating the security

13 situation, "the security organs did not participate, that some of them

14 abandoned their posts, that the Chief of Staff of one brigade is working

15 as a member of the SDA party, that Hajrudin Avdic, although he is an

16 assistant commander for moral guidance, doesn't turn up in his unit or

17 attend meetings." Does this document describe the actual situation in the

18 alleged commands of these brigades and the 8th operations group?

19 A. Precisely so. There was nothing happening. There was no work

20 going on.

21 Q. It goes on to say that the assistant commanders for security are

22 delivering incomplete reports and that you have failed to deliver a weekly

23 report at all. Is this correct?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Now, please look at what it says in the document below the date on

Page 13116

1 the 9th of September 1994, "the municipal assembly of Srebrenica had on

2 its agenda the political situation in the enclave and members of the SVB

3 have not been invited to that meeting."

4 Is the SVB the military security service?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Which illustrates the cooperation with civilian structures. It

7 goes on to say "I would add that on the 8th of September 1994, I spoke

8 with the president of the municipality, Mr. Osman Suljic requesting that

9 this point be placed on the agenda and that I should be present but I was

10 not invited."

11 Please, do you agree that it follows from this document that the

12 civilian organs even did not want to invite to their sessions security

13 people or have contacts with them?

14 A. They neither invited them nor did they need to invite them.

15 Q. Another question in connection with this: After the

16 demilitarisation, did the military police exist and function properly in

17 Srebrenica?

18 A. No. There was only the civilian police.

19 Q. Thank you.

20 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] May this document be given an

21 exhibit number.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]

23 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, yes.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]

25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

Page 13117


2 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown

3 Prosecution Exhibit P578? This is an enactment of the transitory

4 municipal council of Srebrenica dated the 11th of March 1995. P578. I

5 will quote one portion of the document. This is somewhere in the middle

6 of the document.

7 "After a couple of hours of analysis, we all unanimously concluded

8 that the political security situation in the enclave was very complex and

9 difficult, conditioned by a number of factors, but certainly the major

10 factor that influenced the worsening of the situation was the incident

11 caused by senior captain Ejub Golic, commander of the independent mountain

12 Battalion. With the aim of overcoming the situation that can and should

13 be overcome, we adopted a number of conclusions among which we would like

14 to point out the following. Full support was given to our commander of

15 the 28th division, Brigadier Naser Oric. Decision was taken to imprison

16 and take Merdzic, Nezir [phoen] and Sadik Begic to the municipal prison

17 which was already done."

18 Have you heard about this incident.

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Do you know what the outcome of the incident was?

21 A. Yes. I do.

22 Q. Who was the source of information for you?

23 A. From Ejub Golic himself.

24 Q. What did he tell you? How did this incident end? Briefly,

25 please?

Page 13118

1 A. Naser Oric took him to Tuzla to the 2nd Corps command.

2 Q. Thank you.

3 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the witness please be shown

4 another exhibit, which is a document by the district military court in

5 Tuzla, number SU 106/95, dated 25th of April 1995. Security organ of the

6 2nd Corps, or rather "the district military court of Tuzla addresses the

7 2nd Corps command, to Colonel Mehmed Zilic and signed by Ismet Krumic."

8 It says as follows: "On the 20th of March 1995, the Tuzla Security

9 Services Centre informed us that the Srebrenica prison had come under an

10 armed attack during which a number of individuals were helped to escape

11 with the use of force. A group of some 20 members of the army were led by

12 the commander of the independent Battalion, Ejub Golic. The CSB report

13 also says that in late 1992, Ejub Golic murdered two people and was never

14 held to account. There is also suspicion that in March 1995, he set on

15 fire the flat of a Srebrenica judge, possibly because he was angry that

16 some of "his men" had been remanded in custody. I have information that

17 in the meantime Ejub Golic has moved to Tuzla and that he's still there.

18 You are kindly requested to check the allegations from the above CSB

19 report and to undertake measures within your competence and

20 responsibilities."

21 You've told us that you spoke to Golic. Can you tell us, please,

22 when this was.

23 A. Upon his return from Tuzla.

24 Q. Did he tell you whether the judicial authorities in Tuzla were

25 informed of the criminal offences he allegedly perpetrated?

Page 13119

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. According to what he told you, if so, did they talk to him about

3 his alleged criminal offences in the command of the 2nd Corps?

4 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not catch the answer.

5 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. Could this document be

6 assigned a number.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: He needs to repeat his answer because the

8 interpreter did not catch it.

9 What was your answer, Mr. Ademovic, please?

10 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. My question to you was: Did they talk to him in the command of

12 the 2nd Corps, or rather who talked to him, please?

13 A. Yes. They did. Commander Sead Delic and a certain Mehmed Zilic.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: This document, Madam Vidovic, will become Defence

15 Exhibit D858, it consists of two pages, one in B/C/S, one in English, with

16 ERN number 02622028.

17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the usher please show the

18 witness a new exhibit, which is an interview with General Sead Delic in

19 the paper Dani. Delic-Dani, Oric left Srebrenica of his own will. It was

20 published on the 7th of March 2000. Witness, please turn to page 3 of

21 this document. That's page 3 of 8, and Your Honours in English, that's

22 page 2 in the middle of the page. The interview was taken by Vildana

23 Selimbegovic. The question by the journalist was, "Dani: Perhaps, but

24 the time of schooling is quite controversial. Besides that is one of the

25 questions that the military leadership has failed to answer. Delic

Page 13120












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Page 13121

1 answers: I can only state my opinion. Brigade commanders were not in

2 that group. As far as I know, Naser came of his own accord. No one had

3 invited him. I know for sure that late Ejub Golic, commander of a

4 battalion, also came with them (died in the breakthrough through the Serb

5 lines), in order to have him responsible for several murders in

6 Srebrenica -- to have his responsibility for several murders in Srebrenica

7 established. I know his case very well. The commander, Rasim Delic,

8 charged me with deciding whether to send him back or try him here, since

9 there was substantial evidence that he had been implicated in several

10 murders in Srebrenica. We discussed this for a long time and finally

11 decided that his potential crimes do not fall under the statute of

12 limitations, that he would be held responsible for them sooner or later,

13 and that the priority at that time was to send him back to Srebrenica. I

14 thank God that he was sent back since he led the breakthrough from the

15 other side.

16 Q. Mr. Ademovic, I have a question in connection with this. Did you

17 talk to Mr. Oric as to how it came to have him return from Tuzla to

18 Srebrenica?

19 A. Mr. Oric organised his return by helicopter.

20 Q. Did this Mr. Golic tell you?

21 A. Yes, when I visited him when he was involved in an accident, when

22 a helicopter was taken down. That was several days later.

23 Q. Was that the same helicopter that Mr. Delic had organised for his

24 arrival?

25 A. Yes.

Page 13122

1 Q. Please allow me to finish my question. Was that the same

2 helicopter that Mr. Delic had organised in Tuzla to facilitate the Golic's

3 return to Srebrenica?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Another question in connection with this: If someone were to

6 claim that Naser Oric decided not to have Ejub Golic prosecuted for the

7 alleged criminal offences, would that be true?

8 A. No. That would not be true at all. Naser did whatever he could

9 on his part.

10 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, could this document

11 please be assigned a number.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. This document will become D8 -- 859. D859.

13 It doesn't have an ERN number. It consists of eight pages in B/C/S, and

14 five pages in English. Thank you.

15 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I need a further 15

16 minutes, not more, but I wonder if this would be an appropriate time for

17 the break.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: We will have a break now of 30 minutes and then we

19 will resume soon after.

20 --- Break taken at 4.01 p.m.

21 --- On resuming at 4.37 p.m.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Sorry for keeping you waiting but a break means time

23 for others to come to your Chambers with more work and new drafts and

24 problems. So that's how I spent the last 40 minutes.

25 Let's continue and finish, Madam Vidovic, and then Mr. Di Fazio

Page 13123

1 can start.

2 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. Witness, in the course of your testimony you stated that you knew

4 Ejub Golic very well. According to your knowledge of him, did he, in the

5 course of 1992 or later, during the war, ever have the position of deputy

6 commander or commander of the group in Biljecevo?

7 A. No. Golic was always a leader of the group.

8 Q. Where?

9 A. In Cizmici. He was never a deputy. He was always the leader of

10 his fighters.

11 Q. Thank you.

12 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] The transcript should be corrected.

13 The witness always stated that he was always the leader of his Glogova men

14 rather than fighters.

15 Q. Did I hear you well, Witness?

16 A. Yes, that's what I stated, Glogovac -- Glogova men.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Madam Vidovic. Thank you, Witness.

18 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, could the witness be

19 shown another document? This is a document by the command of the unit

20 6338 from Potocari dated 19 May 1993. With the heading "war crime"

21 allegedly signed by the assistant commander for security, Sidik Ademovic.

22 Your Honours, I wish to state the following for the record in relation to

23 this document. This document was delivered to us in three different

24 versions. One of them was here when Mr. Rasim Manas testified. It was

25 P357. However, later on from the OTP we learned that they no longer have

Page 13124

1 this document on their list. Whatever the case, we were delivered the

2 document on several occasions in several different versions and I wish the

3 witness to look at the document and comment upon it.

4 Q. Witness, please look at this document. Do you have in front of

5 you a document bearing the stamp "Yugoslavia Belgrade Law Centre"? Do you

6 have that in front of you?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. Did you hear about the law project centre in Belgrade? And how

9 did you learn about it?

10 A. Yes. This is the law project centre, which is the co-author of

11 the report on Srebrenica, which stated that with the fall of Srebrenica in

12 1995, only 1.500 to 2.000 people had been killed. This report was

13 condemned by the major part of the international public. I believe this

14 document is well known.

15 Q. Very well. I will quote from this document. It is stated

16 here, "Army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, command post 6338,

17 strictly confidential number 06-08/95, Potocari, 19 May, 1993, security

18 organ, war crime." And this is the way this event is described. "In the

19 course of my work in the field, as assistant commander for security of the

20 280th Eastern Bosnia Light Brigade during extensive investigations into a

21 wide array of issues falling within the scope of security, I have come

22 across information and exact circumstances relating to the death of Milko

23 Markovic, father's name Jovo Markovic from Susnjari. Namely after Arkan's

24 men had left Srebrenica and Goran Zekic, when the Serbs fled, that is left

25 the town, among those who remained in the town of Srebrenica was Markovic.

Page 13125

1 The letter was in his apartment in Srebrenica where he was always

2 intoxicated and repeatedly fired from his weapon. At that time, the army

3 entered Srebrenica and on orders from ex-Veliki the above mentioned was

4 captured and delivered to Mes [phoen]. He was taken across a place,

5 mistreated, prodded a little with a knife, and when he was brought to a

6 brook where his throat was partially slit, he was -- a fire was set and he

7 was left to gradually burn."

8 My question is as follows: Are you the author of this document?

9 A. This is an apparent forgery. To me, as a professional, these are

10 ludicrous statements.

11 Q. Is this your signature?

12 A. No.

13 Q. Did you ever hear of an incident involving Milko Markovic, son of

14 Jovo?

15 A. No. I heard about this matter for the first time -- or rather I

16 learnt about this matter for the first time from the Belgrade press. This

17 is a pure fabrication.

18 Q. Look at the reference number for this document 06-08/95. Do you

19 agree this is a reference number dating from 1995?

20 A. Yes, I do.

21 Q. Do you see that the document bears the date of the 19th of May

22 1993? You are a policeman. According to the -- to your -- the practice

23 in our parts, is it possible for a document to be dated 1993 and to bear a

24 reference number 95 or should it bear in the reference number the same

25 date as that in which the document was produced?

Page 13126

1 A. According to what I see from the document, this is in

2 contradiction.

3 Q. In May 1993, did you have a stamp with a lily at all?

4 A. No, no.

5 Q. Do you know when the documents bearing a stamp with lilies

6 appeared in your parts?

7 A. In early 1995.

8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown Exhibit

9 P31? I wish us to compare this document with the present one. P31 is a

10 document by the staff of the Supreme Court of Sarajevo dated 1st January

11 1994, an order concerning organisational changes-establishment. Under D,

12 the 280th Light East Bosnian Brigade should be set up with the

13 establishment number T31327.

14 Do you see that.

15 A. Yes, I do.

16 Q. Do you agree with me that this document indicates that the order

17 for the formation of the 282nd Brigade came from Sarajevo only on the 1st

18 of January 1994?

19 A. Yes. This is an apparent contradiction.

20 Q. Do you agree with me, then, that it arrived only on that date?

21 A. Yes, I do.

22 Q. Do you agree with me that part of this order is also unit 6338?

23 A. Yes, I do.

24 Q. Please look at this document bearing the date 15th of May 1993,

25 the earlier document, which was apparently signed by you, the command unit

Page 13127

1 6338, strictly confidential and so on. Do you agree with me that

2 according to this document, you were the assistant commander with the

3 280th Brigade on the 19th of May 1993 and that the unit bears the number

4 6338?

5 A. Yes, that's what the document says. However, I was not a member

6 of any specific unit.

7 Q. Would you agree with me that on the 19th of May 1993, you would

8 have had to be a prophet, clairvoyant, to draw upon the name or a number

9 of a unit which did not exist in 1993 and which was established by an

10 order issued a year later?

11 A. Precisely.

12 Q. Mr. Ademovic, in this period, on the 19th of May 1993, did you

13 hold the rank of a captain?

14 A. No. It was much later, much, much later, that I was given a rank,

15 upon arrival in Tuzla.

16 Q. Would you tell the Trial Chamber, what were your whereabouts in

17 1993, in May 1993?

18 A. I have to tell the Trial Chamber that at the end of 1992, and I

19 mean December 1992, January, February, and March 1993, there were intense

20 fights in my area and I suffered from chilblains that I still have in my

21 hands and feet, and on the 7th of May 1993, I was in the hospital. I was

22 severely ill. I was -- I underwent a surgery that I hardly survived.

23 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the usher please show the

24 witness another document, which is a letter of discharge from the hospital

25 to the name of Mr. Sidik Ademovic.

Page 13128

1 JUDGE AGIUS: In the meantime, we have not yet given a number to

2 this last document that you made use of before showing the witness

3 P-whatever. Anyway, the document which is being tendered and marked as

4 Defence Exhibit D860 consists of two pages, one B/C/S with ERN 70632892

5 and one which purports to be the English translation thereof with a

6 different ERN number, that is 00650936.

7 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

8 Q. Mr. Ademovic, I hope you have this document before you, which

9 says, "Sidik Ademovic, 1962, operated due to acute infection of pancreas

10 and calculus gall bladder on the 7th of May 1993," and in connection with

11 this, I will ask you the following: You were operated on in the hospital

12 in Srebrenica which was in a very difficult situation?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Would you tell Their Honours for how long you were unable to move

15 around or work after this operation?

16 A. Two months, and after that, I suffered serious consequences and

17 the UNPROFOR representatives in the UN who had their offices in Potocari

18 made it possible for me to be examined very often.

19 Q. Let me show you another document now.

20 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, before that, can we

21 have an exhibit number, please?

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. This document will become Exhibit D861. It

23 consists of two pages, one in B/C/S and one in English. There doesn't

24 seem to be an ERN number. Thank you.

25 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

Page 13129

1 Q. Please look at document D756 now. This is a list of war criminals

2 known to the command of the 1st LPBR who perpetrated war crimes in

3 Srebrenica, Bratunac, Milici, Vlasenica, and Skelani, and there are

4 indicia that they are in Srebrenica, and it says below that "officials and

5 organisers." Mr. Ademovic, please take a look at this list and you will

6 see where it says commanders, your name, where it says -- it's on the

7 third page in Bosnian,?

8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] And, Your Honours, on page 2 of the

9 English translation, it's under number 74.

10 Q. Mr. Ademovic, I want to ask you: Have you ever committed a war

11 crime?

12 A. No. On the contrary.

13 Q. Thank you. I'll proceed. Now please look at page 1. Can you

14 look at page 1?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Look at the name under number 11, Dr. Sabit Begic. Do you know

17 this person?

18 A. Yes, I do, Dr. Sabit is a very well respected citizen of

19 Bosnia-Herzegovina and the town of Srebrenica, and he spent the whole of

20 the war in Sarajevo, from the 17th of April 1992, when he left Bratunac,

21 at 1550 hours after the talks.

22 Q. Look at the name under number 23, Murat Efendic. Did he spend

23 time in Srebrenica?

24 A. No. For three years before the war, he was in Sarajevo, and he

25 spend the whole war there.

Page 13130

1 Q. Under number 26, Besim Ibisevic?

2 A. Just like Dr. Sabit at 1550 on the 17th of April 1992 after the

3 meeting of Bratunac he left the area and he spent the entire period

4 outside Bosnia and Herzegovina.

5 Q. Look at number 70 and then 51 -- and then 51. Mr. Ismet

6 Dautbasic, number 17, was a Professor and dean of the faculty of law in

7 Sarajevo and he's not from Bratunac as it says here. He's from Brezovica

8 and this man spent not more than 24 hours in Srebrenica over years and

9 years. And this other person, Rizo Salmanagic [phoen]?

10 A. He was an eminent lawyer and he had spent very little time in

11 Srebrenica and he had nothing to do with Srebrenica.

12 Q. Look at Adil Osmanovic, Konjevic Polje, number 42.

13 A. Yes. He was known as Theron [phoen]. This person spent some time

14 in Tuzla after the outbreak of the war. After that he spent the entire

15 period in Germany.

16 Q. Does this document then contain correct information and can these

17 people be considered organisers, perpetrators, war criminals?

18 A. No. This is a pure fabrication, pure forgery from this institute

19 in bell grey, headed unfortunately by Mr. Ivanisevic. I apologise to

20 Their Honours, but Mr. -- and the gentleman here and ladies, but Mr.

21 Ivanisevic who invented these lists put me on one of these lists saying

22 that I was an executioner in Jezestica on the 8th of August in his book

23 about the chronicle of our graves.

24 Q. Very well.

25 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Would the usher now show the witness

Page 13131












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Page 13132

1 P480?

2 THE INTERPRETER: 458, interpreter's correction.

3 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]

4 Q. Please look at page 03593125 and page 03593126. These are pages 2

5 and 3 of this long document. Look here. It says "list of people in the

6 Srebrenica municipality who are not assigned anywhere." Did you know the

7 population of Jaglici well?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Did you know all the people living there?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. Look at the numbers 6 and 34. Six, Senahid Gusic, Jaglici. And

12 then Osman Gusic, Jaglici, 34?

13 A. Yes. I've seen them.

14 Q. I want to ask you, in the Srebrenica and Bratunac area, is there

15 another place called Jaglici close to Susnjari?

16 A. Neither in Srebrenica municipality nor in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

17 Q. Thank you. These two persons here, Osman and Senahid Gusic, were

18 they ever residents of Jaglici?

19 A. No, never.

20 Q. Now, please look at the next page and you will see under number

21 42, but let me ask you first, did you know all the inhabitants of your

22 village of Susnjari?

23 A. Yes. I was born there and I still live there.

24 Q. Was there ever a person called Zijad Lilic living there?

25 A. No, never.

Page 13133

1 Q. Is there another place called Susnjari in the Srebrenica or

2 Bratunac area?

3 A. No. In the Krajina, near Banja Luka, there is a small village

4 called Susnjari.

5 Q. In the Podrinje area?

6 A. No. As I said, only as far as I recall in the area of Banja Luka.

7 Q. Thank you. I will now put just a few brief questions to you. Do

8 you remember in connection with some documents --

9 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, which the OTP

10 disclosed intending to use them -- I won't be able to discuss this now.

11 It has to do with this witness.

12 Q. Witness, I'll ask you a general question first. While you were in

13 Susnjari were you nominated as a member of some sort of Srebrenica

14 assembly on behalf of Potocari during 1994, to your knowledge?

15 A. This is the first time I've heard of this.

16 Q. In October 1994, did you attend some sort of meeting in the

17 Srebrenica area or the Susnjari area or anywhere in your area at which

18 there was discussion of a letter by the army commander General Rasim Delic

19 addressed to Colonel Tihomir Blaskic?

20 A. There is the first time I've heard this. What has Tihomir Blaskic

21 got to do with Srebrenica?

22 Q. Could you please explain to Their Honours who Tihomir Blaskic is?

23 A. I heard of that gentleman in early 2000 or 2002. Unfortunately,

24 through this institution here.

25 Q. Was he a commander of the HVO, the Croatian Defence Council, in

Page 13134

1 central Bosnia?

2 A. Yes. That's the man. That's the man I meant.

3 Q. In the Srebrenica area, did you ever discuss such topics?

4 A. No. There was no need. There would be no logic in it. Why would

5 it have anything to do with our area?

6 Q. Thank you.

7 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have no further

8 questions.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam Vidovic.

10 Mr. Ademovic, look at me, please. Do you have a problem?

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I may make a

12 suggestion, may I address ...

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, that's why I'm asking you whether you have a

14 problem. Because if you have a problem we need to solve it for you.

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was one question, with all due

16 respect to all of you, there was a misunderstanding. The question

17 concerned Kravica. For your sake, for the sake of the Prosecution and the

18 Defence, if I can say that I will be very grateful to you.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Go ahead, please. You have a duty actually if

20 there is a misunderstanding somewhere or you think that part of your

21 testimony was not reported accurately, then you have a duty to point that

22 out to us and rectify it. Go ahead. Take your time, as much time as you

23 require.

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's about something very important,

25 an issue which will probably be important to everyone concerned. I

Page 13135

1 understood the question, when asked by Madam Vidovic as to whether I

2 entered Kravica, and I replied "no." I replied no because I had things in

3 my hands and I didn't understand the context of the question properly. I

4 think that Madam Vidovic --

5 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, the witness said

6 before that that he entered Kajici.

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I said I hadn't entered

8 Kravica. I was in Kajici, not Kravica. That is the context. So I did

9 enter Kravica after 1200 hours, and I feel the need to tell you all this.

10 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, may I put a question

11 to clarify this?

12 Q. Is Kajici a part of Kravica?

13 A. Yes.

14 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] The witness replied that he entered

15 the hamlet of Kajici and not Kravica proper, the centre of Kravica.

16 Q. So witness you did not enter Kravica proper, the centre of

17 Kravica, but you did enter Kajici?

18 A. Yes. I was in Kajici, not yet in Kravica. I hadn't entered

19 Kravica yet because there was shelling, there were people wounded, and

20 this made it hard for me to move. That was the context, and I failed to

21 express myself clearly to Your Honours.

22 Q. Thank you, Witness. That's sufficient.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Are you satisfied that you have explained it

24 well now? Or do you want to give us further information or explanation?

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. When asked by Madam Vidovic,

Page 13136

1 if possible, she can put any other questions to me if she feels it

2 necessary as to what I saw and experienced. I think it will be useful to

3 everyone.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you, do you want to put further

5 questions to the witness?

6 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour. No, Your Honour,

7 because I tried to avoid repeating testimony supplied by several previous

8 witnesses. So I tried to abbreviate this testimony. I think the essence

9 has been stated.

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Madam Vidovic.

12 Thank you, Mr. Ademovic. Mr. Di Fazio is now going to start his

13 cross-examination. Your obligation pursuant to the solemn declaration

14 that you made when you first started giving evidence, Mr. Ademovic, is to

15 answer Mr. Di Fazio's question truthfully in accordance with your

16 undertaking. May I also suggest now that more or less we know exactly how

17 much time we have left until the end of business tomorrow, that you keep

18 for the back of your mind the time left and you try to restrict your

19 answers to what is necessary, without volunteering more details, unless of

20 course you want to give explanations. Otherwise, you will be here over

21 the weekend and we will have to continue with you on Monday, even though

22 Mr. Di Fazio himself will be doing his utmost.

23 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, well, I will, Your Honours. But can we

24 revisit this matter just prior to breaking up for the day today, this

25 issue of scheduling and timing and so on?

Page 13137

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, yes, certainly.

2 MR. DI FAZIO: If that's okay with the Trial Chamber.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Certainly. And if you think here and now that you

4 require more time after the end of business tomorrow, then tell us so

5 and we will-- I told you we make a distinction between one witness and

6 another obviously.

7 MR. DI FAZIO: I understand that and I'm grateful, Your Honours.

8 I fear we might have got to the point where I can't see wrapping up this

9 witness, especially with the Defence who need time for their

10 re-examination and any questions that you may have.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Not a problem. Ms. Vidovic took, I would imagine,

12 more than seven hours, and I will not deprive you of any time which is not

13 unreasonable anyway. Because if it does become unreasonable then we stop

14 you.

15 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: But Madam Registrar, I think at this point you

17 better alert the victims and witnesses office and, towards the end of

18 today's sitting, then I will explain to the witness, all right?

19 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Di Fazio, please go ahead.

21 Cross-examined by Mr. Di Fazio:

22 Q. Mr. Ademovic as you heard my name is Di Fazio. I'm one of the

23 prosecutors here and I have some questions for you. And I endorse what

24 everyone said to you. If you can keep your answers brief that will help

25 you and me.

Page 13138

1 Did you go to school in Potocari?

2 A. Yes, in Potocari.

3 Q. Did you go to school with Mr. Oric, Naser Oric, in Potocari?

4 A. I didn't. I -- I'm his senior.

5 Q. Yes. So you're his senior?

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, this witness was born in '62 the other one was

7 born in '67. There is five years' difference.

8 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes. Okay.

9 Q. So -- thank you. Did you know him at school?

10 A. Not really. We were children.

11 Q. And what about in your later life, as an early adult? Did you

12 know him then?

13 A. I was in Sarajevo at the time.

14 Q. I take it your answer is no. Is that right?

15 A. That's right. No.

16 Q. Okay. Thank you and what about in Srebrenica in late 1989, 1990,

17 1991. Did you know or meet Mr. Oric again around that time?

18 A. Yes. We used to come across each other but I did not know him as

19 a person really. I did not know anything about his personality or

20 character.

21 Q. Do I take it from your answer that you formed no particular

22 relationship other than the fact that you were mere acquaintances? Is

23 that what you say?

24 A. Yes. We were acquaintances, but I had many acquaintances with

25 whom I was much closer than with Mr. Oric.

Page 13139

1 Q. Sure. Did you ever become aware of Mr. Oric going to Belgrade,

2 working in Belgrade?

3 A. Yes. I was aware of that, and that is why I told you that I grew

4 up in one part of the world and he in the other, and we didn't know each

5 other very much.

6 Q. Do you know what he did in Belgrade?

7 A. According to the earliest information I received, I knew that he

8 was in security, on the police force, and later on he provided security

9 for Mr. Milosevic.

10 Q. And when did you first hear that and from whom? Or how did you

11 hear that?

12 A. I heard it from my colleagues, police officers in the Srebrenica

13 police station. Mr. Oric would periodically come to the area in his spare

14 time.

15 Q. Right. So I think you were a policeman from about 1981 up until

16 about 1989 when you enrolled in the faculty of political science; is that

17 correct?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. And it was during this particular time that you were a policeman

20 based in the Srebrenica area that you saw Mr. Oric from time to time on

21 his return from Belgrade and it was then that you learned of his

22 activities in Belgrade?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Did you become aware of his working in any other area apart from

25 Belgrade? For example, in Kosovo?

Page 13140

1 A. I was following this from the media. Because of the security

2 situation in that region in the former Yugoslavia, it was there for

3 everyone to see, not just me.

4 Q. Yes, I'm sure you were following it. But my question actually is:

5 Did you become aware, did you ever become aware, of Mr. Naser Oric working

6 in Kosovo for security forces?

7 A. I only know that he was part of the security forces for

8 Mr. Milosevic. Now, where he was assigned, there must have been his

9 superiors who were privy to that, and I did not really have occasion to

10 find out about it.

11 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I just wish to correct

12 the interpretation. The witness stated that I knew that he worked for

13 Milosevic providing security, but not in the security forces, which is

14 totally different sense.

15 MR. DI FAZIO: Thank you.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, let's move.


18 Q. Do I take it that you have no knowledge of any activities

19 undertaken by Mr. Oric in Kosovo? Is that your position?

20 A. What his activities were and under whose orders, how would I know

21 that? I was in Srebrenica and he was in Belgrade doing his job. It would

22 be quite improper for me to say things before this Trial Chamber that are

23 not then to be untrue. That would mean that I would be lying.

24 Q. I'm not inviting you to lie. On the contrary. On the contrary.

25 So please don't -- just relax about that and you just tell us the truth.

Page 13141

1 You -- okay.

2 You met -- you said in evidence yesterday that you met Mr. Oric in

3 April of 1992, in fact you said around the 20th of April 1992. And you

4 were talking about uniforms at the time. I want to ask you about that

5 meeting. First of all, where was the meeting? I'm not suggesting it was

6 a formal meeting. An encounter. We will call it an encounter. Where was

7 the encounter?

8 A. It was at Livade, in passing, in the village, just as everybody

9 else that came across each other.

10 Q. Yes. And was Mr. Oric there in company with other men?

11 A. He was in the company of several lads, five or six of them, and

12 there were always civilians there, women, children, and elderly, refugees

13 who had started arriving by then.

14 Q. But just to clarify so that you understand me, I'm not talking

15 about refugees and civilians and the general population of the village.

16 I'm talking about Mr. Oric. Now, who was in company with Mr. Oric, with

17 Mr. Naser Oric, on this occasion on the 20th of April? Can you give us

18 some details? You've said lads. What sort of lads? Can you remember how

19 many lads, where they were from, remember their names, anything like that?

20 A. I said about the 20th of April, which doesn't necessarily mean

21 that it was on the 20th of April.

22 Q. All right. Fair enough. Perhaps not on the 20th. Around the

23 20th. Please continue.

24 A. Who were the lads with him? They were his acquaintances. I met

25 these lads for the first time and if you're referring to their uniforms, I

Page 13142












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Page 13143

1 saw this uniform -- these uniforms on the -- for the first time after the

2 11th of April 1992, after I left Srebrenica, and this remained impressed

3 in my memory.

4 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter's correction, after the 17th of

5 April.

6 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes, okay.

7 Q. Just to be absolutely clear, can you give us any idea of the

8 numbers of men who were in company with Mr. Oric at this time? I'm still

9 not entirely clear. Is it a question of ten or 20 or 30 or four or five

10 men? I know -- and I know there has been a long time has passed since

11 then but try and give us an idea of the size of the group in company with

12 Mr. Oric.

13 A. Around the 20th, the first time I met them, there were around five

14 or six of them. Later on probably the numbers increased. I heard there

15 were some 10 or 15 men and the number varied from -- at different periods.

16 I believe that there may have been at most 15 to 20 men. But at the time

17 that I saw them, there were five or six of them and I cannot tell you

18 anything else because I would be making things up.

19 Q. Sure, sure. And this is the occasion when you discovered that

20 they had acquired the uniforms, Mr. Naser Oric and the group of men, the

21 five or six men who were with him, they had acquired their uniforms from

22 Arkan's men by setting up an ambush in Potocari. Is that -- that's right,

23 isn't it?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Arkan was well known back then, wasn't he, in 1992? He was a

Page 13144

1 notorious figure, wasn't he?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Famous throughout the former Yugoslavia, correct?

4 A. Yes. And everybody knows why.

5 Q. Yes. Exactly. Quite right. And so for Mr. Oric and his

6 associates to have ambushed Arkan and taken the uniforms from them, was a

7 very considerable feat of bravery, wasn't it?

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Jones?

9 MR. JONES: Yes, Your Honour, just that the evidence is it was

10 Arkan's men, not that it was actually Arkan himself. I think that needs

11 to be made clear.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, and that's --

13 MR. DI FAZIO: That's quite correct.

14 Q. It was Arkan's men. Arkan and his men were notorious throughout

15 the former Yugoslavia, weren't they?

16 A. Yes. And I've already said that one knows why they were famous

17 and it was with these intentions that they came to the areas of Bratunac

18 and Srebrenica. I believe everybody was quite clear about that.

19 Q. Sure. And for Mr. Oric and his associates to have dealt with

20 these Arkan's men was a feat of quite some bravery, wasn't it?

21 A. At that time, yes. And if I may continue? If the Arkan's men

22 entered Srebrenica, torched and killed, scorched and raped many

23 inhabitants of Srebrenica, was it not then courage to stand ground and

24 oppose such villains at the time? Had I been there I would have done the

25 same.

Page 13145

1 Q. Yes. You're quite right with respect, aren't you? It was -- it

2 was something that had to be done and Mr. Oric and his associates had

3 performed a feat that was going to become well known in the Srebrenica

4 area. Am I correct or not?

5 A. Yes. And he was thought to be a very brave man. After that,

6 he -- I always considered him a courageous and honest man. Had I been

7 there I would have participated in the ambush after all the crimes that

8 the Arkan's men had committed in Srebrenica.

9 Q. And this feat in ambushing Arkan's men, these tough fellows,

10 became well known throughout the Srebrenica area and made Mr. Oric a

11 popular, well-known figure in the area, didn't it?

12 A. Yes. But only by his courage, by nothing else. For the rest he

13 was just a citizen, just as I was. In some other areas of life I enjoyed

14 more respect than Oric. It was only in this respect and for these reasons

15 that he was respected.

16 Q. But given the situation that was developing in your area, in your

17 particular area, and in the Srebrenica area, this feat in ambushing

18 Arkan's men, presumably wounding or killing them to the point where he was

19 able to secure uniforms, was something that made him respected and brought

20 fame to him, isn't it? Would you agree with that?

21 A. No. He was respected only for his courage but not for anything

22 else. I repeat: I enjoyed more respect as a citizen in some other walks

23 of life in Srebrenica than him, and I speak upon full responsibility. I

24 was there.

25 Q. All right. How did -- can you recall how it came up in

Page 13146

1 conversation that the ambush had occurred and that Arkan's men had been --

2 had had their uniforms taken off them?

3 A. I haven't understood your question, how it came up.

4 Q. Well, on the 20th or -- sorry, around the 20th of April 1992,

5 Mr. Naser Oric turns up at this location that you've mentioned and he's

6 got five or six men who are dressed in camouflage uniforms which you find

7 out were taken, retrieved, from Arkan's men. Okay? How did that topic

8 come up in conversation? How did you find out about it? That's all I

9 want to know. On this day around the 20th of April 1992.

10 A. It was because I heard the shooting, and because the people talked

11 about it. The people were moving from Potocari to my village all the way

12 up to the 2nd of May. At that time, I myself descended to Potocari.

13 Q. And what were the people saying about this episode where Arkan's

14 men had been ambushed? What were they saying?

15 A. The stories varied of course because the people talk. I went down

16 into the area to see for myself what had really happened. Of course,

17 different men tell different stories, and one always prefers to see things

18 with one's own eyes before believing them.

19 Q. Sure. And so I take it that it was -- that the whole episode had

20 already acquired a notoriety? I don't mean that in any bad sense but the

21 whole episode was already famous and well known. Different groups of

22 people were talking about it. You actually went down to see the site

23 where this ambush had occurred, correct?

24 A. Yes. It was on that day and all the way through to the

25 demilitarisation, or rather after the 10th of August 1992, that I did not

Page 13147

1 have an opportunity to meet the man.

2 Q. No, no.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: I think there is a mix-up here.

4 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Anyway, you put -- repeat the question, please, and

6 the important thing is that we make sure that it is being interpreted well

7 or at least that he understands.

8 MR. DI FAZIO: I'll try and make it simpler.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: If you can, yes, please. I don't think it was

10 complicated.


12 Q. The episode with Arkan, the ambush that Mr. Oric and his -- sorry,

13 with Arkan's men, that Mr. Oric and his men had participated in was quite

14 well known throughout the Muslim community. Different groups, different

15 people were already talking about it, correct?

16 A. Yes. This raised our spirits and our morale for all of us. It

17 made us stronger. It made us believe that one can oppose even the Arkan's

18 men.

19 Q. Yes. Sorry. Please continue.

20 A. That not even they were impossible to conquer, and invincible, and

21 that even they could be stopped from further bloodshed, massacre, and

22 intimidation. I don't think we should dwell much on the Arkan's men.

23 Q. I might just dwell on it a little bit longer, if that's all

24 right.

25 When you say --

Page 13148

1 A. Fine.

2 Q. When you say that it raised our spirits and our morale, you're

3 talking, aren't you, about the Muslim people in the wider Srebrenica area,

4 not just talking about your village, your more -- the area just around

5 Susnjari. You're talking about the wider area around Srebrenica, aren't

6 you? That's where spirits were raised and morale was raised amongst the

7 Muslim people, correct?

8 A. I can only speak for Potocari and my area. I cannot speak for the

9 rest. This is a very wide area, some 40 or 60 kilometres. I was unable

10 to know what was going on over there, what their morale was, what the

11 people were talking. I can speak for my environment.

12 Q. Okay.

13 A. I don't think it would be necessary for me to speak about the

14 rest.

15 Q. From everything that you heard and saw and observed in 1992, 93,

16 94, and 95, would you agree with me that Mr. Naser Oric was a brave and

17 courageous soldier?

18 A. He was as brave a soldier as I was and all the others.

19 Q. Okay.

20 A. One of the leaders of a group of some 15 to 20 men, just as I was

21 the leader of my 25 men, and Naser Oric had a group of some 15 to 20 men.

22 Q. Would you say that you were as well known throughout the

23 Srebrenica area, amongst the Muslim population, Bosniak population, as

24 you -- as he was?

25 A. In my village of Susnjari, I was a respected man, as well as in

Page 13149

1 the neighbouring villages of Jaglici and Brezova Njiva. I was a

2 respected, honest man then, just as I believe I am today.

3 Q. I'm not -- honestly, I'm not suggesting anything about your

4 respectability or your honesty. I'm just asking you a very simple

5 question. Would you say you were as well known throughout the Srebrenica

6 area amongst the Muslim population as Mr. Oric was? If you can comment on

7 that, please let us know. If you don't know, say so.

8 A. The citizens of Srebrenica, all of them, including Serbs, Muslims

9 and Croats, knew me as a policeman and trusted me because I discharged my

10 duties in a professional manner and with full responsibility, without

11 making any distinctions on any basis. As for my own village of Susnjari

12 and the neighbouring villages of Jaglici and Brezova Njiva, naturally the

13 people liked me, just as they did in some other places, but, of course, my

14 village had a special place.

15 Q. I'll try and approach it this way. Was Mr. Naser Oric well known

16 in the Srebrenica area in 1992 and 1993? Was he famous?

17 A. Only by what he had done in Potocari. For the rest, there were

18 better, more diligent and honest men. To the best of my knowledge.

19 Perhaps in his group, yes. I myself respected him for that particular

20 segment. As for the other matters.

21 Q. Thank you. Did you ever hear the Serbs speaking about him when

22 you were listening to what they had to say over the radio? Serb forces, I

23 mean.

24 A. Yes. They used to mention him and his group.

25 Q. Sorry.

Page 13150

1 [Prosecution counsel confer]


3 Q. Did he have a nickname, Mr. Naser Oric? A nickname? Did

4 Mr. Naser Oric have a nickname?

5 A. No. To the extent I know, he didn't.

6 Q. All right. Okay. Well, let's move on from Mr. Oric and let's

7 talk about your group. You gave evidence that there were some groups that

8 were formed in the Susnjari area and you recall you said there was a group

9 formed in your village. You were the leader. And just to be clear, there

10 were groups also formed in Jaglici and a place called Brezova Njiva; is

11 that right?

12 A. Yes, groups. There was a group in Jaglici and a group in Brezova

13 Njiva.

14 Q. Thanks.

15 MR. DI FAZIO: I wonder if the witness can be shown the map very

16 briefly. It's D841. It's the big one.

17 Q. Mr. Ademovic I've had trouble finding Brezova Njiva. I wonder if

18 you can point it out to me. I had no problems with Jaglici and Susnjari.

19 But Brezova Njiva what I would like to you find for me, please.

20 MR. JONES: The witness did mark it on the map.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. My recollection is that he did. But ...

22 MR. DI FAZIO: Look, I'm sorry, I didn't want to --

23 JUDGE AGIUS: It is marked on my map, for example. It's marked by

24 2 letters, B and N. The problem is --

25 MR. DI FAZIO: Sorry, Your Honours, is it just slightly to the

Page 13151

1 right.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: I can show you where I marked it but I have to find

3 my map first.

4 MR. DI FAZIO: I thought it was a different spelling.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: I marked it for my own uses, obviously. It is

6 between Jaglici and Susnjari and he pointed there at roughly equal

7 distance between the two.

8 MR. DI FAZIO: I'm sorry, I can see now it's BN.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: I put BN there.

10 MR. DI FAZIO: I apologise to the Chamber. It went over my head.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: No problem. This gets complicated sometimes.

12 You're not the only one who finds it difficult.


14 Q. And again, pardon my -- sorry, Ms. Usher, I don't need the map

15 just for the moment. My apologies.

16 And was there another group also formed in a village called or an

17 area called Babalica or Babuljica, something like that?

18 A. It was established only later, later. I said it had 15 men and

19 its leader was Mensur Misanovic [phoen]. I think I said quite enough

20 about it.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, because I think again there is a

22 misunderstanding. You're asking about a village.

23 MR. DI FAZIO: Yes.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think he is answering about a village. He

25 is answering about a group.

Page 13152

1 MR. DI FAZIO: Okay. Look, I'll try and deal with it again.

2 Q. You've given history -- you've given testimony about the formation

3 of your group in Susnjari, in Jaglici, Brezova Njiva, and now I'm asking

4 about a fourth place, a fourth location, something like Babalica or

5 Babuljica.

6 A. Yes. That is a village. It is a village quite far from me. To

7 the south of my area. But initially, the people had moved out of it.

8 Q. All right. Let's concentrate on the three villages --

9 A. I -- excuse me. You can see if you look at the map. I apologise.

10 If you look at the map, you can see in the map that it's not in my area.

11 Q. All right. We will concentrate on the villages in your area,

12 okay? Now, were they all formed at about the same time, these groups that

13 you've been speaking about?

14 A. At various intervals of time. I put myself at the disposal on the

15 18th, which doesn't mean that the group was actually formed on the 18th,

16 because I said in my testimony that we already had problems around

17 recognising people's status and membership, because of these groups,

18 because they wouldn't accept us as such, as legal members of the army of

19 Bosnia and Herzegovina. We had to prove in an administrative procedure,

20 retroactively where we had belonged.

21 Q. I don't know if I'm not making myself clear and I apologise to you

22 if I'm not. I'm not asking you about the legal niceties of whether or not

23 you were or were not a member of the ABiH Army. What I'm asking you is

24 this: Were the groups that you talked about, the independent local

25 groups, in Susnjari, Jaglici, in Brezova Njiva, were they all formed at

Page 13153












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Page 13154

1 around the same time?

2 A. Somewhere in the first 10 days after the 18th of April, and up to

3 the end of April, in that space of time. It was all spontaneous. It

4 wasn't well organised. People were still leaving Srebrenica and Bratunac,

5 going off towards Tuzla or other European countries. There was still a

6 lot of confusion, a lot of fear.

7 Q. Fine. As far as your particular group was concerned, the Susnjari

8 grouping, at the beginning, when it was first formed, you had about 20

9 rifles and some pistols, thereabouts, right?

10 A. Yes. I said that. Some 20 weapons, either rifles or pistols, but

11 I do have to point out, as I said, that these were weapons for which

12 people had licences. They were hunting rifles and this includes pistols

13 or carbines. I had my official automatic rifle.

14 Q. I heard all your evidence, thank you, yesterday and the day

15 before. Thank you. That's fine. Did your group acquire more weapons

16 throughout 1992? Now, I know that you said in evidence in late June you

17 got a few more. But I'm talking about the whole year. Did your Susnjari

18 group acquire more weaponry as the year wore on?

19 A. Yes. Yes. In the way I described during conflicts, clashes. Let

20 me just mention one detail. On the 29th of June, the 29th of June, at

21 Hajducko Groblje when we set an ambush -- or, rather, when an ambush was

22 set for the refugees going off, we captured some weapons and a combat kit

23 and some infantry weapons and we exchanged these so that we replenished

24 our weapons, our store of weapons.

25 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it's a question of the

Page 13155

1 transcript. The witness said when -- that they got the weapons, when an

2 ambush was set for the refugees, whereas here it says when they set an

3 ambush for the refugees, which is quite different.

4 MR. DI FAZIO: I'm sure that's correct.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, thank you, Madam Vidovic.


7 Q. All I want to know is this: As the year wore on and you

8 approached the end of the year 1992 what sort of numbers of weaponry did

9 your group have and what type of weapons did your group have?

10 A. We had mixed, a mixed assortment or weapons, hunting rifles,

11 carbines, still all with licences. Then there were the automatic weapons

12 we captured, in the way I described, when we were ambushed by Serb forces

13 in various places and during the fighting, when we were attacked, and then

14 we would wait until we were sure and they would throw their weapons away

15 and we would collect them.

16 Q. I heard all of that. That's not a problem, okay? My question is

17 this: By the end of the year, what had you acquired? Just that. What

18 did you have? Dutch one Zolja, 15 Zoljas, 35 automatic weapons, grenades?

19 Just tell us -- give us a brief summary of what your group had by way of

20 weaponry by the end of the year. That's all I wanted to know.

21 A. Everything I've enumerated so far. I had this and after the 6th

22 of August, the big ambush and massacre at Hajducko Groblje, another M53,

23 and approximately, because I can't recall the exact number, several

24 semi-automatic rifles. That was all.

25 As for Zoljas and what you're talking about, I knew nothing of

Page 13156

1 that because it was the other side firing from those weapons in my area

2 where people were killed.

3 Q. All right. Thank you. Thank you for answering my question. Now

4 what about membership of your group? By the end of the year what sort of

5 numbers did your group have? And I know you told us that it fluctuated

6 from time to time, but at the end of 1992, how big was it, the Susnjari

7 group?

8 A. I had 25, sometimes the number would increase for various reasons.

9 Sometimes people would leave because this was not obligatory so they would

10 leave to look for ford for their families so that you would come to the

11 position where you left him and he would be gone. More or less --

12 Q. You would agree with me on -- sorry, let me withdraw that and

13 rephrase it. Am I correct that there was really no significant

14 improvement in the weaponry held by your group or the numbers of men,

15 fighters, in your group from the time you started out by the end of 1992?

16 A few more extra automatic weapons and that's about it?

17 A. I said several automatic rifles and, in the course of 1992, two

18 M53s but we took this in two different ways. One was on the 29th of June

19 and the other on the 6th of August and the little on the 8th of August but

20 that was very little.

21 Q. So you had the same shortage of weaponry throughout all of 1992?

22 You could never substantially improve your position?

23 A. I don't know how. We were only helped in a certain time period

24 depending on the situation and the attack by the group from Jaglici or the

25 group from Brezova Njiva, if in their areas there were not intense

Page 13157

1 infantry attacks. And if they came to our assistance, they got weapons or

2 ammunition in the same way. And that was it.

3 Q. Okay. But apart from the scavenging of odd weapons following

4 military encounters, you didn't actually acquire much in the way of

5 weaponry or fighters throughout 1992, right?

6 A. The amounts the Serbs had, we didn't have. But we had enough to

7 wait because every bullet was worth its weight in gold. Every bullet

8 could mean a life. So we didn't waste any. We didn't have bread to eat,

9 let alone ammunition.

10 Q. Your capacity to resist the Serbs and their technological -- and

11 their technological advantage that they had didn't change substantially,

12 did it, from April 1992 to December 1992, on your evidence? Would you

13 agree with that proposition; no significant difference, a few extra

14 automatic weapons, that's all you got, correct?

15 A. That's correct as far as my group goes. I did have another

16 advantage because our geographical position, location, gave me a greater

17 chance with far less equipment and, by making sure that no bullet was

18 wasted, to survive. Otherwise we would have suffered a disaster like the

19 one in 1995. I have to say that there were two other groups in the area

20 who would occasionally come to my assistance.

21 Q. Okay. I was going to ask you about those other two groups, the

22 Jaglici and the Brezova Njiva group, okay?

23 Did their position vis-a-vis weaponry and fighters remain

24 basically static throughout 1992, as yours had?

25 A. The situation was the same as in my case. The numbers increased

Page 13158

1 somewhat but not a lot.

2 Q. All right. Thank you. Now we will move on to another aspect of

3 these groups that I'd like to know about.

4 Firstly, can you briefly tell us how it came to be that you were

5 made leader of your group? Briefly, please, Mr. Ademovic. I just want to

6 know how it happened. Was it a meeting, an election, discussion? Just

7 tell us briefly.

8 A. There was no meeting. There was no election, if you mean a legal

9 procedure, systematic and chronological process. It was all spontaneous

10 on the part of the local villagers in the village because they saw what

11 was going on from Croatia and further afield. I was hesitant to accept,

12 and had not the situation been what it was, I would never have accepted.

13 But with hindsight I would do the same again. I would not, however, wish

14 my experiences on my worst enemy. I wouldn't want my worst enemy to be

15 put in the same situation that I was in. You can imagine what I knew,

16 what I'd seen, and when you're desperate --

17 Q. Mr. Ademovic, I'm very fortunate not to have had your experiences.

18 All I'm asking you is a very simple question, okay? How did you become

19 leader? That's all. How did it happen? I'm not asking for -- I'm not

20 suggesting you should have followed any procedure or that you wrested

21 power from someone. I'm just asking you: How did you become leader?

22 That's all.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Basically if I could assist here, intervene.

24 What Mr. Di Fazio want to know is how come that out of all the

25 people in Susnjari -- in your village, the choice fell on you and not on

Page 13159

1 someone else? This is what we want to know.

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'll put it simply. I arrived in my

3 village through the woods. I brought an official automatic rifle with me.

4 And they saw their entire security hanging on that one single automatic

5 rifle at the time. I would have been happy had someone else taken it or

6 had there been more such weapons, unfortunately. But I happened to have

7 this weapon. And people saw their security as hanging on that single

8 rifle. And although I did so reluctantly, I --


10 Q. All right. Well, what sort of control did you exert over this

11 group in the months that followed your becoming leader of the group? In

12 particular, what I want to know is this: Were you able to tell the men

13 where to go and fight, how to -- first that question. Were you able to

14 tell them where to go and where to fight?

15 A. As for control and issuing orders, it was all voluntary. There

16 was a patriotic commitment, but I couldn't issue an ultimatum to someone

17 or say to them, "You have to go there. You have to do this." I want to

18 clarify this. I do apologise, but I have said in my testimony that it was

19 not an obligation. People would leave. They did leave. People from my

20 group left to look for food because the situation was what it was, for

21 various reasons.

22 Q. Okay. So if you had planned an action to take place in two or

23 three or four days' time that required ten men, at any point of time in

24 the next two or three or four days, any number of those ten men could have

25 come and said to you, "No, I'm sorry, I'm not going to go and participate

Page 13160

1 in that action." That was always a possibility?

2 A. Please, sir. With all due respect, what could we have planned?

3 Does it say anywhere we planned anything? All the time we just waited.

4 We didn't go anywhere. There was no planning. What kind of planning? I

5 was only in my own area with these men with the capacities we had. The

6 manpower I had, the -- and the gun I had --

7 THE INTERPRETER: The rifle, that is, interpreter's correction.

8 THE WITNESS: -- the MTS. All I could do was make use of the

9 configuration of the terrain in order to save myself and others.

10 All I wanted was to avoid being hit by a bullet and being killed.

11 Q. But you've given us extensive evidence of being involved in --

12 well, yes, of being involved in military encounters at the very least.

13 And when you were involved in these military encounters, you were doing so

14 with members of your own group, weren't you, Kravica, and places like

15 that? That's correct, isn't it?

16 A. Yes. With the groups who came to me under the circumstances that

17 prevailed.

18 Q. Thank you. Now, when you were involved in these military

19 activities with members of your group, did you ever think in advance about

20 what you were going to do? Did you plan it?

21 A. I didn't have any opportunity to plan anything.

22 Q. Okay.

23 A. The only thing that happened --

24 Q. So --

25 A. Please, please. Let me describe it specifically. When I set out

Page 13161

1 towards Kravica, I didn't plan anything. The only thing I could plan was

2 looking for bread and perhaps a bullet or two, because, as I said, I was

3 hungry and I ate grass.

4 Q. Okay. So is it that your testimony to the Trial Chamber, that

5 from April of 1992 until demilitarisation, you and your group made no plan

6 for any military activity at all? Is it -- do I understand you correctly?

7 A. My whole testimony, if you followed it, you and the esteemed

8 gentlemen, described my own area, the struggle to survive, to survive, to

9 stay alive, and to help the refugees, of whom there were enormous numbers

10 there, to help them somehow.

11 Q. Mr. Ademovic, I'm not asking you about the suffering of your

12 people, okay? I'm not. I'm asking you about military activity.

13 A. I apologise. I apologise. I, as far as military activities, or

14 plans to attack, I had none of that. There was no possibility of that.

15 And everything I've said so far goes to confirm this. There was only the

16 struggle to survive. You can imagine planning an attack.

17 Q. All right. Okay. You made no plans for any attacks. What about

18 plans for defending your village? Did you make any plans for defending

19 Susnjari using this group of people?

20 A. Please. If you're being attacked, with that kind of force, would

21 you defend your own house? Under the circumstances I was in, I was born

22 there, I was not attacking anyone. I had what I had. And what I had, and

23 they were slaughtering and killing people, and people wanted bread. They

24 had nothing to eat. What would you have done in my situation?

25 Q. I'm not criticising you, Mr. Ademovic. I can fully understand

Page 13162

1 that you would want to --

2 A. I do apologise. I do have feelings.

3 Q. Yes. I understand that. I'm not seeking to mislead you or to

4 upset you in any way. All I want to know is about planning and how your

5 group operated. I want to know how they worked, how they functioned,

6 okay? So did you make any plans for the defence of your village? Because

7 you had good reason to, okay? So did you make any plans?

8 A. If in one day on Ravni Buljim and Rupoglav in that tiny area,

9 there would be 3.000 projectiles of various calibres falling, landing in

10 that area. What would you have done in that situation? Would you have

11 climbed the tree or dug a dugout?

12 MR. DI FAZIO: Your Honour, we have got five minutes to go.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: We have eight minutes to go.

14 MR. DI FAZIO: Eight minutes to go.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: It's up to you, of course.

16 MR. DI FAZIO: I think I've reached the end of this particular

17 topic for the moment, if Your Honours please, and I'd like to consider

18 what I -- my position as far as cross-examination goes. I may be able to

19 finish tomorrow.


21 MR. DI FAZIO: I don't know. I'm not -- certainly not making any

22 promises but I might be able to.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: But -- I do appreciate what you're saying and I

24 think -- I know exactly what you mean. However, you have to understand

25 that we cannot operate in limbo as regards witnesses. I cannot leave

Page 13163

1 today here and leave the witness not knowing whether he is going back on

2 Saturday or whether he is going back on Monday or on Tuesday. As we are

3 going, if you continue and finish your cross-examination, we will be here

4 Tuesday if not Wednesday.

5 MR. DI FAZIO: No question.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: And that's a fair assessment, believe me. I know

7 what I am saying. But he has got a family, I presume.

8 MR. DI FAZIO: I understand that.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: And he needs to let his family know when he is going

10 back. And I have, together with Judge Brydensholt and Judge Eser, and we

11 have talked about this several times, a responsibility to minimise the

12 costs of this Tribunal as much as possible.

13 MR. DI FAZIO: Your Honour, I find myself in a peculiar situation.

14 Let me say this. If I proceed with the cross-examination that I have

15 planned so far, and plan on working on tonight, there is no way that we

16 will finish tomorrow. It's out of the question, I think.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: I can quite understand that.

18 MR. DI FAZIO: I, however, just wish to tell the Trial Chamber

19 that I may decide to at some point tomorrow cut it short. That's all I'm

20 saying. As presently advised we are not going to finish tomorrow.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Madam Registrar, I understand that the

22 Victims and Witnesses Unit are monitoring the sitting so they follow

23 what's going on. So I'm just tasking you with coordinating with them,

24 explain to them if they have not understood what the situation is, and

25 then they know which preparations to provide for or make.

Page 13164

1 As far as you, Mr. Ademovic, the situation -- you've heard me. I

2 wish I were in a position to tell you here and now tomorrow we'll finish

3 and you can go home on Saturday. As it is, I don't know what the

4 situation is. So I am informing the victims and witnesses unit, who are

5 usually in charge of making arrangements for your return back home,

6 that -- to leave options open. In other words, not to close the option of

7 taking -- sending you back home on Saturday if Mr. Di Fazio brings his

8 cross-examination to an end tomorrow. If not then we are obviously leer

9 Monday, if not also Tuesday, and I don't know what days there are flights

10 to wherever you wish to go because I don't know where you're living now

11 and I don't want to know. So that's the position. Just wanted to put

12 your mind at rest that we are taking an interest in trying to leave all

13 options open so as not to leave you here unnecessarily. All right?

14 So we will adjourn now. Tomorrow, as I said, Ms. Vidovic and

15 Mr. Wubben, it's 9.00. Is it the same courtroom? It is still here in

16 Courtroom I at 9.00 in the morning instead of quarter past 200. All

17 right? Thank you.

18 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.12 p.m., to

19 be reconvened on Friday, the 28th day of October,

20 2005, at 9.00 a.m.