1 Tuesday, 15 September 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Good morning to everybody in and around the
6 courtroom today.
7 Mr. Registrar, will you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning to in
9 and around the courtroom. This is case number IT-04-81-T, the Prosecutor
10 versus Momcilo Perisic.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much. Could we have the appearances
12 for the day, starting with the Prosecution, please.
13 MR. THOMAS: Good morning, Your Honours. Barney Thomas,
14 Ann Sutherland, and Carmela Javier for the Prosecution. Good morning to
15 everybody in and around the courtroom.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
17 And for the Defence.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good
19 morning to all the parties to the proceedings. Let me introduce
20 ourselves. Milos Androvic; Tina Drolec; our case manager, Daniela Tasic;
21 and Defence counsel, and Mr. Gregor Guy-Smith and Novak Lukic.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Lukic.
23 Yes, Mr. Thomas.
24 MR. THOMAS: Thank you, Your Honours. Just before the next
25 witness comes in, can I just advise Your Honours that he is a viva voce
1 witness. He wishes to testify in English. He is fluent in English, but
2 his mother tongue is Serbian. I have invited him if he has any
3 difficulty understanding anything and wishes to use the assistance of the
4 Serbian language and the Serbian translators that he should just say so.
5 I am not expecting that to occur, but I've just advised him that he may
6 testify in English, and if necessary I would ask Your Honours if he needs
7 that assistance.
8 He is subject to a number of protective measures. A pseudonym,
9 MP-O11, image and voice distortion. In addition, Your Honours, while I
11 and the position that he held, I'd like to do that in private session.
12 And there may be one document that I would use during the course of his
13 direct examination we may need to go into private session for, but
14 otherwise the balance of his testimony should be safely conducted in open
15 session with those protective measures in force.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Thomas.
17 MR. THOMAS: Your Honours, if we could please go into closed
18 session for his entry into the courtroom.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into closed session.
20 MR. THOMAS: Thank you, sir. In which case I can call MP-O11.
21 THE REGISTRAR: We are in private session, Your Honours.
22 [Private session]
11 Pages 8920-8922 redacted. Private session.
17 [Open session]
18 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much. Court adjourned for a short
21 --- Break taken at 9.18 a.m.
22 --- On resuming at 9.48 a.m.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry about that. Now resumed. May the Chamber
24 please move into private session.
25 [Private session]
11 Pages 8924-8926 redacted. Private session.
8 [Open session]
9 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honours.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
11 Yes, Mr. Thomas.
12 MR. THOMAS:
13 Q. Just to clarify His Honour's question about it being the JNA, in
14 early 1993 was the JNA still known as the JNA?
15 A. Actually, during that time I think so, I can't remember on this
16 moment. It was JNA or VJ. I can't remember really.
17 Q. Okay. I just want to ask you some questions now about the
18 organisational structure of the 72nd Special Brigade. Firstly, the
19 72nd Special Brigade was a unit in which corps?
20 A. Special unit formed for the special operations and for, let's
21 say, for the special occasions that were used, under the command of the
22 HQ, direct from the HQ in Belgrade
23 Q. All right. I just want to take that one step at a time. This
24 corps of special units, was the 72nd special Brigade immediately
25 subordinated to this corps of special units?
1 A. I think so, yes.
2 Q. And the corps of special units was immediately subordinated to
4 A. They were in the direct command of the headquarter in Belgrade
5 and on the highest level people from the, let's say, from the military
6 defence and military corps.
7 Q. When you say the headquarters, what organ are you talking about?
8 A. I'm talking -- okay, I will say this on Serbian, it is maybe
9 easier for me to say. [Interpretation] The 72nd Special Brigade was
10 under the direct command of the supreme staff which was not exactly the
11 supreme staff. However, decision could be made only by the Chief of the
12 General Staff in terms of the use of the unit and in what cases the unit
13 should be used. Of course, it had to have a prior approval by the
14 Ministry of Defence directly from the president himself.
15 Q. At the time of your joining of the 72nd Special Brigade, who was
16 Chief of General Staff?
17 A. At the time when I was joining the 72nd Brigade, the Chief of
18 Staff, I can't remember on this moment. I think so that was
19 General Perisic. And brigade was -- can I check in my statement, I think
20 so I gave in the statement there, because I can't remember on this
21 moment. Just to refer to the memory. It's a long time.
22 Q. Okay. Let me find the appropriate spot in your statement and
23 read it to you. Just give me a moment.
24 MR. THOMAS: Your Honour, if I could be permitted to do that to
25 refresh the witness's memory.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: I see Mr. Lukic nods his head in an agreeing
2 fashion, and unfortunately that was not recorded. I want to believe that
3 you are saying, yes, you don't have any objection, Mr. Lukic?
4 MR. LUKIC: No objection, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much. You may proceed, Mr. Thomas,
6 and show the witness.
7 MR. THOMAS: Thank you, sir.
8 Q. Sir, paragraph 38 of your statement, you say that the commander
9 of the VJ special corps unit was under direct command of General
10 Zivota Panic who was the Chief of General Staff of the VJ. When
11 General Panic left in latter half of 1993, Momcilo Perisic became the
12 Chief of the General Staff of the VJ?
13 A. Exactly, that's correct.
14 Q. At the time of your joining the 72nd Special Brigade, who was the
15 commander of the VJ Special Corps?
16 A. It was General Mrksic on that time, Mile Mrksic. I think so,
17 that was Mrksic. But the unit was under the direct command of
18 Milorad Stupar, Colonel Milorad Stupar, because I was recommended to go
19 straightaway to Milorad Stupar in Avala on the moment when I got the
20 instruction from Major Vusic [phoen] who was actually the guy who was in
21 charge for recruiting the members for this special unit.
22 Q. All right. Again I just want to take this one step at a time.
23 At the time of your joining the 72nd, what was the position occupied by
24 General Mrksic?
25 A. To be honest on this moment I can't remember, because as I said
1 before it was a long time ago. But I know that he was one of the
2 members. He used to be -- before that he was in Republic of Srpska
3 Krajina. He was commanding the --
4 Q. Pause there. Would it help if I refreshed your memory from the
5 same paragraph --
6 A. Yes, please.
7 MR. THOMAS: Your Honour, if I could be permitted to do so.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: You are.
9 MR. THOMAS: Thank you.
10 Q. Sir, in the same paragraph 38 of your statement you say:
11 "General Mile Mrksic was the commander of the VJ Special Forces
12 Corps when I joined the 72nd Brigade."
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. "Around August 1993 he was replaced, and General Panic became the
15 commander of the VJ Special Forces Corps." Is that correct?
16 A. Yeah, Mrksic was, and he was replaced, yes, exactly.
17 Q. Now, that was the corps level command. Who was the commander of
18 the 72nd Special Brigade?
19 A. It was Chief of Staff on that time commanding the 72nd Brigade,
20 directly in charge was Milorad Stupar. And the guy for the special corps
21 was Panic. I can't remember the name on this moment, but I remember him,
22 he was a moustache, very good-looking guy.
23 Q. All right. Pause there for a moment. I'd like you to look at an
24 exhibit, please.
25 A. Yes.
1 MR. THOMAS: And, Your Honours, if we could please have P351 on
2 the screen.
3 Q. Sir, do you recognise that as the organisational chart of the
4 special units corps as at December 1993?
5 A. Can you make it a little bit bigger, please.
6 Q. Do you recognise that as the organisational chart of the special
7 units corps?
8 A. Yeah, exactly, that's it.
9 Q. And does it accurately reflect the organisational structure and
10 the command structure?
11 A. Yes, that's correct.
12 Q. How many units comprised or what units comprised the 72nd Special
14 A. 72nd Brigade had battalion of the military police for the -- may
15 I say this in Serbian, it will maybe be easier because I don't know
16 correct translation of this.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: You know what, if you want to speak in Serbian,
18 you are welcome to speak in Serbian. It will be much easier than -- we
19 have interpreters.
20 THE WITNESS: All right. Thank you. [Interpretation] The
21 72nd Brigade was composed of the military police battalion for special
22 operations on Mount Avala
23 Pancevo, and there was also a Kovin assault battalion. All the three
24 were parts of the 72nd Brigade.
25 MR. THOMAS: Your Honours, could we please go into private
1 session for a moment.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
3 [Private session]
11 Page 8933 redacted. Private session.
18 [Open session]
19 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
21 Yes, Mr. Thomas.
22 MR. THOMAS:
23 Q. Sir, what was the purpose of the 72nd Special Brigade?
24 A. 72nd Special Brigade actually was used in most of cases when the
25 other units couldn't do nothing. That mean to be transported immediately
1 to the area where our action was required after, let's say, when the
2 situation with the hostages, when the situation with the very strong
3 terrorist units, or with the situation where we needed to be, let's say,
4 to destabilize the enemy units, actually, by our actions.
5 Q. Was it an elite unit?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Was the 72nd Special Brigade ever deployed outside the borders of
8 the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia?
9 A. Actually, yes, but not outside of the borders which are on the
11 around Yugoslavia
12 Q. We'll talk about specific deployments in a moment, but for
13 example, during the time that you were serving in the 72nd Special
14 Brigade, was it ever deployed to Bosnia?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Okay.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm losing you here. Your initial question was,
18 was the special unit, the 72nd Special Brigade ever deployed outside the
19 borders of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia? Do you mean the --
20 MR. THOMAS: The FRY.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: The FRY, Serbia
22 MR. THOMAS: Yes, sir.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
24 MR. THOMAS:
25 Q. I want to talk, first of all, about a deployment to Srebrenica.
1 Was the 72nd Special Brigade deployed to Srebrenica at any time in 1993?
2 A. Actually, during the 1993 there was an order to go to, let's say,
3 to take an action against the terrorists and Mujahedins which made the
4 [indiscernible] that area Serbian civilians, and we were requested to go
5 to that area and to clean the area from the terrorists and to push them
6 back toward Srebrenica from the border.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Which area is this that you were going to?
8 THE WITNESS: This is area of Pozmaci [phoen], Poznanovici,
9 toward Srebrenica. From Fakovici village.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
11 Yes, Mr. Thomas.
12 MR. THOMAS:
13 Q. When did you receive this order?
14 A. It was, let's say, at the end of February, sometime on the
15 February 1993.
16 Q. Do you know who issued the order?
17 A. Actually, the order was given from the highest command level,
18 that mean from the HQ. And we were ready, and we move.
19 Q. And by the HQ, are you talking about the General Staff?
20 A. Of course. Nobody could move the unit without the permission of
21 the General Staff.
22 Q. Was that true for the entire time of your service in the
23 72nd Special Brigade, that nobody could move the unit without the
24 authority of the Chief of the General Staff?
25 A. Definitely. That unit, nobody could move without the highest
1 level permission.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I have two objections. The first one
4 refers to the last question put by Mr. Thomas. I believe it was leading.
5 And I have another objection, but since the witness has already answered,
6 I'm saying this only for the transcript. I'm objecting to the line of
7 questioning. I thought that Mr. Thomas would have only a few general
8 questions, however, I can see that he is exploring the topic further.
9 The Defence believes that those questions go beyond the scope of the
10 indictment. And let me say this immediately, if Mr. Thomas means that
11 the topic dealing with February is relevant because of the context, I
12 would like to object because I don't think that this topic is not related
13 to any factual charge, and the only factual charge in the indictment is
14 specific to paragraph 44, the Sarajevo
15 the only thing that the witness could talk about.
16 So if Mr. Thomas wants to continue questioning the witness about
17 this incident in spring 1993, I object to that line of questioning
18 because it is beyond the temporal and factual scope of the indictment.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Thomas.
20 MR. THOMAS: Sir, I reply by saying that activities surrounding
21 Srebrenica prior to 1995 are relevant to the foreseeability of events
22 which occurred in 1995, particularly where we have an instance, as we do
23 here, of direct involvement ordered by the Chief of the General Staff.
24 There is -- the examination does not -- I do not intend my examination to
25 go much further into the events of 1993 other than to describe in general
1 terms whether or not they were successful. And the only return to the
2 issue would be in respect of another decision about Srebrenica being made
3 in 1994. But the reason why I deal with both issues, Your Honour, is
4 because it is relevant to General Perisic's knowledge of the consequences
5 of any military operation in Srebrenica in 1995.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm not quite sure how foreseeability becomes
7 relevant here, Mr. Thomas, when that incident took place at the time when
8 General Perisic was not the incumbent Chief of Staff. Maybe if you talk
9 about your 1994 incident that you are referring to, which you have still
10 not talked about, that was during his term, but how does foreseeability
11 impact him when it was during the regime of some other person?
12 MR. THOMAS: Well, it does in the sense, Your Honour, that there
13 were -- there was major military involvement in Srebrenica in 1993, of
14 which most people would have been generally aware.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Because most people would have been generally
16 aware, does that make him aware?
17 MR. THOMAS: Not necessarily. Of course not, Your Honour. But
18 it's circumstantial evidence of his knowledge.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: I think on that point you are going a little
20 outside your temporal area -- temporal scope, Mr. Thomas.
21 The other objection, Mr. Lukic, was that Mr. Thomas was leading.
22 You didn't tell us where he was leading.
23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm giving up on that
24 objection because the witness has already provided his answer.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic has given up on his other objection.
1 You may proceed, Mr. Thomas.
2 MR. THOMAS: Thank you, sir, and I understand, I will not pursue
3 the 1993 intervention in Srebrenica any further.
4 Q. Sir, was there ever a suggestion or anything more than a
5 suggestion that the 72nd Special Brigade should go to Srebrenica for
6 combat operations in 1994?
7 A. In 1994 there were some, let's say, discussion about the going to
8 Srebrenica, but the unit -- actually the members of the unit were not,
9 let's say, ready to go. Why? This because a lot of things in the unit
10 were not resolved, especially for the accommodation of the families,
11 especially once that happen, what happened in Sarajevo when we lost -- we
12 have so many casualties. And because of so many things we always were on
13 the, very polite way, refuse to go anywhere before some our demands will
14 be resolved.
15 Q. Do you recall when in 1994 it was first proposed to you that you
16 be deployed to Srebrenica?
17 A. The discussion was, I can't remember on this moment exactly the
18 time, but sometime it was in the spring of 1994.
19 Q. And who was wanting you to go?
20 A. Actually, the discussion was several times they were coming to
21 us. It was Mr. Mrksic, Mr. Perisic, General Perisic, and Stupar also.
22 The discussions were -- they were trying to give us a very good reason to
23 go there. Even the situation was really extremely, let's say, not so
24 well for our units because that part of the territory was, like, deep
25 inside of our lines and our territory. So, therefore, the best solution
1 was to clean the area from the Mujahedins which were always threatening
2 to go outside to make any kind of crimes they did before, et cetera,
3 et cetera. But, as I says, most of the unit members, they were not ready
4 to go before some demands were fulfilled.
5 Q. You've mentioned a little of this already, but what was -- can
6 you tell us what their, that is General Perisic and others, what their
7 intentions were for your deployment in Srebrenica in 1994, what did they
8 want you to do?
9 A. Actually, our action if we -- if we will be involved in that
10 operation, that could give it much more, let's say, effect, psychological
11 effect to another units that the elite members of there, they are trying
12 and they are going to finish the operation successfully. And as I says,
13 they know that if we go, we can do because most of our members were very
14 well trained and elite.
15 Q. Was it only the VJ Special Forces units that were going to be
16 involved in such an operation in Srebrenica?
17 A. Actually, only the VJ units were never involved in such
18 operations. They were always, let's say, some kind of support of the
19 Special Police units from Serbia
20 units, red berets, and also local special units in that area, like
21 Panthers from Majevice or other Vukovi Sa Vucjaka Wolves from Vucjaka,
22 et cetera, et cetera.
24 operation around Srebrenica?
25 A. Actually, VRS units were always -- were always acting in the
1 coordination with our units. And our units were for them, actually, the
2 very good motive and very good, let's say, morale to their members that
3 they are somebody who is, let's say, on the top level, the elite, is in
4 front of them, and we are going to do the deal. But to do the operation,
5 to clean the area, et cetera, et cetera, and they are going to be us as a
6 support coming. Then after we clean the area, they take the position,
7 and they keep the position. Because normally, we cannot keep the
8 position. We are just coming, doing the operation, and we are going out.
9 And somebody else need to stay there and to secure the area from future,
10 let's say, any actions of the enemy.
11 Q. Did General Perisic appear well informed about the situation in
13 A. I believe, yes, because all informations about the situation in
14 all ex-republics were actually going to one spot, and this spot is
15 actually the main man in the General Staff in Belgrade. Without getting
16 the informations, he couldn't make decision. Anyhow, he couldn't make
17 alone decision, but all of them, they were very well informed about the
19 Q. Was it considered strategically important to launch an offensive
20 against Srebrenica?
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I believe that this and previous
23 witness's answer is expert, calling for an expert opinion. He cannot
24 answer any strategic questions. He cannot talk about what Mr. Perisic
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Thomas.
2 MR. THOMAS: Sir, first of all, this witness was briefed or
3 spoken to directly by General Perisic about his unit being involved in
4 Srebrenica in 1994. But having said that, I accept when I look at my
5 question that it's a vague question, and I can ask it a little bit more
6 with greater particularity. And if Your Honour will permit me, I will do
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: If you will rephrase, yes, thanks.
9 MR. THOMAS:
10 Q. When General Perisic spoke to you and your units in 1994 about
11 becoming involved in Srebrenica, did he give you any information or any
12 idea that he considered this a strategically important operation?
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: You see, Mr. -- let me just intervene here. You
14 are still leading, Mr. Thomas. The proper formulation of a question is
15 what did he tell you.
16 MR. THOMAS: Yes, sir. I can do that. And my apologies.
17 Q. Sir, did you hear His Honour's questions? What did
18 General Perisic -- before I ask you that question, how many times did
19 General Perisic talk to you and your units about becoming involved in
20 Srebrenica in 1994?
21 A. General Perisic was coming to see our units as also the other
22 members of the HQ. They were coming to visit us to see how we are
23 training, and in between there were discussions about the possible
24 actions or possible situations, et cetera, et cetera.
25 Q. During those meetings or discussions, what did he tell you about
2 A. If I can remember --
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Lukic.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] When I saw the question asked by
5 Mr. Thomas, I'm not sure that he received an answer. I mean, there is a
6 question, but there was no answer, and Mr. Thomas immediately passed on
7 to the next question. I believe that we should wait for the witness to
8 actually say how often he saw General Perisic, or in fact how often he
9 spoke to him.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Thomas.
11 MR. THOMAS: Well, sir, admittedly he hasn't put a number on the
12 occasions, but I wasn't interested in getting a number, sir. I just want
13 to get from him whether we are talking about an isolated conversation or
14 whether we are talking about more than one conversation because the
15 question I wanted to ask him, the question you invited me to pose to him
16 needed to be based on all of the discussions taken together, rather than
17 just one isolated discussion.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Thomas, if you then want to get -- if you
19 don't want the number, then don't ask a question that calls for a number.
20 Ask a question that calls for what you want. You said at page 25, line
21 6, "How many times did General Perisic talk to you?" That calls for a
23 MR. THOMAS: That's very clear, sir, yes. My apologies again.
24 Q. Sir, can you tell us roughly how many times General Perisic may
25 have discussed with you and/or with other members of your unit in your
1 presence being deployed to Srebrenica in 1994?
2 A. How many times, okay, there were several times. As I says, I
3 can't remember the number of times when General Perisic was visiting our
4 camp in Avala. And he didn't talk directly to me, but he talked to the
5 commanding staff of the unit. So that mean when we were together, we
6 were discussing about this sometime questions, sometime answers, sometime
7 suggestions, et cetera, et cetera. That's what I'm saying in this
8 several times when he was visiting us in the camp, he was saying that
9 it's possibility we can be engaged in the hot spots in the area of
12 Q. All right. I just want to get this clear for myself, but also
13 for others, I would imagine. Were there some occasions where
14 General Perisic would speak to you, a group including you, and were there
15 some where he would limit his discussions to commanding officers above
17 A. There were situations when he spoke to us. Sometime there were
18 situations when he spoke only to Mr. Zivkovic.
19 Q. On the occasions when he spoke to Mr. Zivkovic, would
20 Mr. Zivkovic report to you the nature of those discussions?
21 A. In the basic, he never -- never, I cannot say never. He was just
22 telling us possibility where we can get engaged. But he never says
23 direct that I got now from Perisic, We have to do this, this, and this.
24 But you know, in this kind of situations, the higher command level, it's
25 giving informations to low-level only how much they think we need to
2 Q. Did the 72nd Special Brigade ever end up deploying to Srebrenica
3 in 1994?
4 A. As I know, no. Our units from Avala was not involved in this,
5 because as I says before, there were some questions which we didn't
6 clear, and we were little bit upset.
7 Q. You spoke about General Perisic mentioning the Mujahedin and the
8 crimes committed by the Mujahedin. What units was he talking about?
9 What forces was he talking about that your actions would be directed
11 A. That were the units under the command of the Naser Oric and part
12 of the members, I think so, that -- from that area was operating the
13 El Mujahid Brigade.
14 Q. And where was Naser Oric operating from?
15 A. Naser Oric was operating from Srebrenica.
16 Q. Did the VRS have its own special units like the VJ Special Units?
17 A. Yeah. As I know, they also had had a special units, and they
18 were always trying to make it like special units in Serbia.
19 Q. Did you or any units of the 72nd Special Brigade have any
20 involvement with those VRS Special Units?
21 A. We were involved in, let's say, training, acting as instructors,
22 et cetera. Giving them, let's say, training for the special weapons or
23 special tactic, et cetera, et cetera. Yes, we did.
24 Q. How regularly or how frequently would you provide training to the
25 VRS Special Units?
1 A. To be honest, how many time, I don't know, but let's say we had
2 in the -- during my time in that units, we had people coming from VRS to
3 be trained by us, by our unit, or going to another units, actually, in
4 Pancevo, division battalion or some other, actually, units in, let's say,
5 in Batajnica was the police special units. But most of time people were
6 coming so they can get trained and to go back and to form their own
7 units. Because, as I says, the situation become not so good and they
8 supposed to have trained people, and that was the best way how to give
9 them position to have trained people there.
10 Q. Besides giving these VRS Special Forces training, did you give
11 them anything else?
12 A. Actually, on the moment when they came to train, to be trained,
13 actually, they came without anything. During the training, they were
14 trained with special equipment or weapons, and by going back, they went
15 back with this equipment, because it's normally to have this with you
16 what you are trained for. If that's a sniper, sniper. If it's some
17 other weapon, it's some other weapon. Whatever they were trained, they
18 took it with them. It's normally. On that time -- during that time
19 everything was normal to support.
20 Q. Why was it normal to support the VRS forces in this way?
21 A. Actually, on that time we feel and we knew that there was no
22 difference between the VRS and VJ. Why? The most of the VRS, what left
23 in territory of the Bosnia
24 to protect the people from the further actions of the terrorists,
25 et cetera. So by us, there was a normal connection. There was nothing
1 different. VRS, VJ, it is one same thing.
2 Q. Was General Perisic aware of the training that was being provided
3 and the materiel that was being provided?
4 A. I believe so, yes. I believe so, yes.
5 Q. Was he ever present at any of the training that was being
6 conducted by you of these VRS Special Forces?
7 A. In some cases, yes. They were coming to see how this is going.
8 General Perisic, General Mrksic, and other commanding staff, they were
9 coming just to see how are things going, are they improving? Do they
10 need something? Do we need something? And that's it. It's normal.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Can I just ask one question. So you say you saw
12 yourself as the same army with the VRS. Did you see yourself also as the
13 same army with the army against which the VRS was fighting? It was also
14 part of the VJ or the JNA before the break-up.
15 THE WITNESS: Actually, we fought not with the ex-VJ members --
16 JNA members. Because on our other side we had the people who were coming
17 from, let's say, extremely Muslim countries like Afghanistan, like Syria
18 like Turkey
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Those people were not the entire army that we were
20 fighting against, there were just a few people that were part of a bigger
21 army that had been part of the JNA before.
22 THE WITNESS: To be honest, even we had by us in our army which
23 are left, we had the Muslims also fighting against these people there.
24 So I don't think so Brigade El Mudjahid was formed by the -- or they were
25 the members of the ex-JNA members.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm not talking about the Mujahedin. I'm talking
2 about the army of which the Mujahedin were a part that you were fighting
4 THE WITNESS: To be honest, on that time we -- I don't think so,
5 we didn't fight so much with the regular Bosnian army, our unit
6 especially. Because we were just jumping from cases to cases where there
7 was extreme situation, and we were inside to fight against this elite
8 units of another side of the enemies, which are formed by the people who
9 had very much experience with fighting in Afghanistan, with fighting in
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: You may proceed, Mr. Thomas.
12 MR. THOMAS: Sir, I'm just about to of move on to another topic.
13 I'm aware that our time schedule is a little different today. Are you
14 happy for me to continue?
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is a little different today because of the
16 break we had earlier, with the technical problems. I'm still trying to
17 work out the arithmetic. Maybe if you go up to 11.00.
18 MR. THOMAS:
19 Q. Was the 72nd Special Brigade, while you were a member of it, ever
20 deployed to the area of Sarajevo
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. When were you deployed to Sarajevo?
23 A. When I start to think about this, I get little bit upset because
24 of the -- what happened to our unit there, because of the number of the
25 casualties. That was the end of the year 1993.
1 Q. When did you first become aware that your unit was going to be
2 deployed to Sarajevo
3 A. Actually, that was just a couple of days before we move, because
4 we were never aware to have a little bit longer time because of the
5 possibility that information can go out.
6 Q. How did you become aware that your unit was to be deployed to
8 A. If I can remember on that time. We were visited by the -- it was
9 Stupar, Mr. Stupar was coming there. And there were -- I think so.
10 There was also Mr. Perisic coming, and we were aware we need to be ready,
11 that we will go soon in action. And afterwards, I can't remember on this
12 moment, can you just show me the statement what I was giving there so I
13 can refresh my memory, because ...
14 Q. Just before I do that, let me ask you some more questions.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic is on his feet.
16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I agree to using the statement to
17 remind the witness, but these are some crucial things now. So I would
18 really prefer the witness to remember things to reading the statement
19 because otherwise you could have proceeded without this.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: I have a problem with your objection, Mr. Lukic.
21 If at some stage you can agree that a witness can be refreshed, his
22 memory can be refreshed, I don't see why in certain other situations it
23 shouldn't be refreshed, simply because according to you this is a crucial
24 area. Shouldn't you have a principle basis on which you object?
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think -- or, rather, I'm -- I think
1 I'm trying to adhere to principles. And in accordance with your
2 instructions, the witness's statement can be used to refresh his memory.
3 But some parts that refer to very crucial moments such as the mention of
4 the departure for Sarajevo
5 immediately to refresh the witness's memory. I believe that the witness
6 should have these crucial things on his mind. He should remember them,
7 just as at the time when he first gave a statement to the OTP. I believe
8 that the Prosecutor should first try to refresh the witness's memory by
9 asking targeted questions. Now, that is the gist of my objection.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: I didn't see the principle. Maybe I'm just not up
11 to it, but I'm not seeing the principle.
12 Mr. Thomas.
13 MR. THOMAS: Sir, I'm happy to ask some more questions, I was
14 intending to do so before resorting to the statement, but if that doesn't
15 assist, I will be seeking leave to refresh the witness's memory in terms
16 of who was present at the meeting.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
18 MR. THOMAS:
19 Q. Sir, you spoke of a meeting with Colonel Stupar, and you think
20 General Perisic, a couple of days before you moved out to Sarajevo, and
21 you spoke of this being somewhere around the end of 1993. Do you know --
22 can you be more specific about when?
23 A. It was actually sometime around the -- from 20 -- no, from 15 of
24 December, something like this, 15, 18 December, I can't remember now
25 really, it was a long time ago. And as Mr. Lukic says, yes, I gave the
1 statement but statement was given by me four years ago, so I'm trying to
2 forget my war past. It's not so easy every night to have the nightmares
3 and all these things, you are trying to forget everything in connection
4 with this, so therefore I'm saying, if I see the statement, yes, I can
5 confirm that that's correct or not.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: But your answer is that it was around the 15th,
7 18th of December?
8 THE WITNESS: Yes, sometime, as I said, from 15 and up. I can't
9 remember the exactly date.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: I think that's good enough.
11 MR. THOMAS: Your Honour, given the answer given by the witness,
12 can I refresh his memory from his statement about -- as to whether or not
13 General Perisic was present at that briefing? He thinks he was, and
14 that's his testimony at present.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Again I see a very subtle shake of the head by
16 Mr. Lukic, so you may do so.
17 MR. THOMAS: Thank you, sir. I'm reading --
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: He is getting ready to stand up.
19 MR. THOMAS:
20 Q. Sir, I'm reading from paragraph 71 of your statement:
21 "Around the end of December 1993, I remember it was a few days
22 before the international new year, Perisic and Stupar came to our
23 battalion, and they ordered us to go to Vogosca Sarajevo to take part in
24 an offensive for the VRS Sarajevo Romanija Corps against the Bosnian
1 Is that correct?
2 A. Yeah, to take action especially for the Zuc hill.
3 Q. That was my next question. What specifically was the task that
4 the 72nd Special Brigade was required to perform?
5 A. Actually, hill Zuc was a very crucial point for controlling the
6 area, and from time to time they were shooting from Zuc hill on the
7 Serbian, let's say, side. And decision was to take Zuc hill, to take the
8 complete control so that there will not be possibility that Bosnian army
9 or any other forces to, let's say, to disturb any more the Serbian people
10 on other side, and also to get -- to make the full connection with our
11 forces on the other side. So it was very crucial point.
12 Q. When you talk about making the full connection with our forces on
13 the other side, first of all, are you -- the other side of what?
14 A. The VRS. So to take the line, complete line control. To have
15 the clear line, and to have the clear position, better position.
16 Q. Okay. That answers who -- what you mean by our forces.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. But what do you mean by our forces on the other side? The other
19 side of what? You wanted to make a clear line with the VRS on the other
21 A. Yes, yes, yes. Clear connection. Direct connection. So it was
22 not -- it will not be any more, as I says, to have this hot spot
23 disturbing or not disturbing. Actually, we needed to clean that area
24 from the Bosnian army so we can control -- we -- the army can control,
25 complete that line.
1 Q. Did you deploy to Vogosca as you had been ordered?
2 A. Yes, we did. Our unit did.
3 Q. Did you attempt to take Mount Zuc
4 A. Yeah, we tried to do that.
5 Q. Were you successful?
6 A. No. Unfortunately not.
7 Q. During the operation, were there casualties from the 72nd Special
9 A. Yeah. There were killed and wounded. A lot of them.
10 Q. How many were killed?
11 A. If I can remember on this moment, was more than ten. More than
12 ten. I can't remember now the number really. Ten, eleven. I can't
13 remember. Or killed were five, six. I can't remember, if you can
14 refresh my memory, I will then.
15 MR. THOMAS: I'd like you to look at an exhibit, please, which is
17 Q. Do you recognise that, sir, as a --
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. -- report from the 72nd Special Brigade command?
20 A. Yeah.
21 Q. You see that it lists killed officers and killed servicemen?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Are these members of the 72nd?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Were they -- is this list related to the Zuc operation?
1 A. Yes. Correct.
2 Q. Were all of those listed killed during the operation?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. What happened to your wounded? Were there wounded in the
6 A. Yeah, there were wounded. They were immediately transported to
7 VMA, it was a military special hospital in Belgrade.
8 Q. And how were they transported there?
9 A. By helicopters.
10 Q. Helicopters belonging to which army?
11 A. Helicopters belonging to, let's say, Army of -- Yugoslavian army,
12 actually. When I say this, as I says, it was no different, VRS or VJ;
13 it's one. On that time, it's one.
14 Q. I'll talk in a moment a little bit more about the casualties and
15 what happened to them, but I want to go back again to the briefing you
16 had with Colonel Stupar and General Perisic before the operation. Was
17 there any talk of any additional payment for doing -- for undertaking
18 this operation?
19 A. Actually, during that time we had a problem with the salaries.
20 You know that it was a big inflation in Serbia in that time. Before we
21 go, we were requesting to get paid salaries and extra daily what we --
22 for the engagement we get daily, like is normally daily extra money. So
23 we were requesting before we go, we were requesting to get paid so we can
24 leave money to the families. If something happened, these poor guys,
25 they get killed, what will be then with the family if they do not get the
1 money to survive that month? Or, you know, what I mean. So we request,
2 yes, we request to get paid whatever will be for the -- the salary and
3 plus engagement how many days they were plan to engage us. We says,
4 Okay, we need to get paid for this time, to leave the money, and then we
6 Q. Did Colonel Stupar and General Perisic agree with that
8 A. We told, we will not go before we get paid because our family
9 will suffer.
10 Q. Did you get paid before you went?
11 A. Yes. We got certain amount of money which, actually, we needed
12 immediately to exchange, we got in Dinars, and we went immediately on the
13 black-market to exchange to get the Deutschemarks because if you do not
14 do this in the same day -- in the same moment when you get the money,
15 after a couple of hours, you get nothing; it's worthless paper.
16 Q. And what was the equivalent in Deutschemarks that you and other
17 members of your unit were paid extra for going on this operation?
18 A. On the moment when we get paid. When we exchange, it was from
19 1.000 up to 2.000 Deutschemark. So it was enough so family can survive
20 for, let's say, couple of months, if something happen.
21 Q. And who paid you this money?
22 A. We get paid by the, let's say, it was a -- how it was how you
23 call this in English?
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Say it in Serbian.
25 THE WITNESS: I will say it in Serbian. [Interpretation] It was
1 the service that was responsible for payroll. [In English] Yes.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Would that be a convenient moment? We'll take a
3 break and come back at half past 11.00. Court adjourned.
4 --- Recess taken at 11.00 a.m.
5 --- On resuming at 11.29 a.m.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Thomas. We'll go up to quarter to 1.00.
7 MR. THOMAS: Quarter to 1.00, sir, yes. Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Q. Sir, when did your unit leave Sarajevo or withdraw from Sarajevo
9 after the failed Zuc operation?
10 A. It was immediately after the operation was failed.
11 Q. Do you recall the date roughly?
12 A. Actually, it was the next day.
13 Q. Do you recall the date of the actual operation itself, the day
14 you lost your soldiers?
15 A. I think so, it was one day -- it was 29. 29 or 30 of December.
16 I can't remember on this moment. I just know that it was immediately
17 before the new year celebration.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Which year was it?
19 THE WITNESS: Pardon me?
20 MR. THOMAS:
21 Q. Which year?
22 A. It was 1993 to 1994.
23 Q. Okay.
24 MR. THOMAS: Your Honours, can we please go into closed session
25 for a single document that I need to use with the witness.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into closed session.
2 [Private session]
11 Page 8958 redacted.
18 [Open session]
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Well, this order is still on the screen.
20 MR. THOMAS: I'm sorry, that should be removed, Your Honour.
21 Thank you.
22 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
24 MR. THOMAS:
25 Q. Now, you mentioned something about the operation not being as
1 secret as it should have been. I just want to explore that with you for
2 a moment. First of all, was your operation or your involvement in the
3 operation supposed to be kept secret?
4 A. Yeah.
5 Q. Secret from whom?
6 A. Actually, secret for, let's say, for everybody. Why for
7 everybody? Because if another side will know that we are going,
8 et cetera, that could make us welcome, as they did, they find out how, I
9 really don't know, but they make us very good welcome, so we get in this
10 trouble and so many soldiers died. Because during the past time all our
11 actions were without so many casualties. This is the first time we were
12 really defeated.
13 Q. Because of the fact that the enemy forces were well prepared for
14 your arrival, was there some suspicion that information had leaked out?
15 A. Definitely.
16 Q. Was General Perisic aware of this possibility, that there had
17 been a leak?
18 A. I believe so.
19 Q. Do you know whether he took any steps after the operation to deal
20 with this possibility?
21 A. I believe so, yes, because this kind of situation cannot pass
22 without any kind of internal investigation how this happen and why this
24 Q. And to your knowledge was an investigation like that launched?
25 A. By -- there was not official investigation. You know, this is
1 the internal things which are always investigating.
2 Q. While you were in the field carrying out the operation, was there
3 any need to be secretive about the fact that you were a VJ unit as
4 opposed to a VRS unit?
5 A. Actually, whenever we went in the area of operation in Bosnia
6 were always carried the VRS, the signs. That was normal in that time.
7 Q. Why?
8 A. Because of the -- actually, I don't know the reason, but it was
9 normally for all of us to put the VRS signs so we are like uniform, you
10 know. Everybody need to be the same.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: So by signs, you mean the uniform? Did you wear
12 the insignia of the VRS on your uniforms?
13 THE WITNESS: Actually, we wear three colour flag, it's a Serbian
14 flag. Only Serbian flag and saying Vojska Republika Srpska.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: So you didn't wear VRS insignia?
16 THE WITNESS: Yeah, we did. We had the sign of the VRS.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Proceed.
18 MR. THOMAS:
19 Q. And was that true of this operation as well, you wore VRS
20 insignia for the Mount Zuc
21 A. Actually, on that time we, all of us, all of us, we get the
22 signs, somebody put the signs, somebody didn't put the sign, depend.
23 Depending, that was actually not so general strict order put the sign of
24 the VRS because there was not the VJ sign, we had it on the uniforms.
25 MR. THOMAS: Just while we were talking about this issue, I
1 wonder if we can have Exhibit P358 on the screen, please.
2 Q. [Microphone not activated] You will see, sir, that this is a
3 warning from VRS --
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Prosecutor, please.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Microphone, Mr. Thomas.
6 MR. THOMAS:
7 Q. You will see, sir, that this is a warning issued by the VRS
8 Main Staff on the 25th of December, 1993, warning against open referral
9 to units of the Yugoslav Army in that way and that they shouldn't be
10 referred to in communications as being from the VJ, but that they are --
11 MR. THOMAS: If we go to the next page in English, please.
12 Q. That they be treated as forces of the VRS. First of all, was
13 this, to your knowledge, carried out during the Mount Zuc
14 A. Actually not to me, but I believe to the other command staff,
15 yes, because it's, as says, it's from the HQ of the Republika Srpska. So
16 to us personally, this was not shown.
17 Q. Were you aware, first of all, that this warning had been issued?
18 A. We knew about this warning, that we need to communicate and we
19 need to act as Vojska Republika Srpska.
20 Q. Was this typical of what you had to do when you were on
21 assignment in Bosnia
22 Mount Zuc
23 A. No, every time we were engaged in Bosnia, we were supposed to act
24 under the Republika Srpska.
25 Q. Apart from -- let me ask you another question.
1 When did you leave finally the 72nd Special Brigade?
2 A. I left the brigade, it was the -- on the beginning of 1995. End
3 of 1994, beginning of 1995.
4 Q. After Zuc and prior to your departure, in other words, while you
5 were still in the brigade, were there any other deployments of your unit
6 to Sarajevo
7 A. Actually, I was not involved any more in any of the deployments,
8 but there were some deployments. There were some deployments, and I know
9 they went to some actions. Direct which actions, I'm not sure. I cannot
10 give this answer correct.
11 Q. Are you able to tell us which territory those actions were
12 carried out on?
13 A. Actually, I gave you some information in my statement, and as I
14 can remember, that was sometime Sarajevo, there was discussions also --
15 there were discussions that also supposed to be somewhere in the area of
16 Zenica, Olovo, but we were not engaged in this, any discussions about
17 area of Cazin, et cetera, but I can't really remember these things.
18 Q. Would it help you if I referred you to passages of your
20 A. I would appreciate that.
21 MR. THOMAS: Your Honour?
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, you may.
23 MR. THOMAS:
24 Q. Just give me a moment, please, sir, and I'll find those passages.
25 Paragraph 77, sir, you say:
1 "I remember in the beginning of 1994 some members of our
2 battalion went to Sarajevo
3 Vojnovic and Alimpic." Do you recall that now?
4 A. Yeah, I do.
5 Q. You further state that no one -- I'm sorry, you further state
6 that no one went from your company; is that right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. You say that mission was kept secret, and they did not stay
9 longer than a month in Sarajevo
10 A. Something like this. They were out of the camp -- they were out
11 of the camp, not more than 10, 13 days, something like this.
12 Q. After you left the brigade in 1995, did you stay in touch with
13 members of your unit? Did you otherwise have information about what the
14 activities of the 72nd Special Brigade were?
15 A. Actually, I stay in touch with some of the people because we were
16 friends, almost like brothers, you know these kind of situations
17 connecting with the people. But to be honest, I did not request or I
18 didn't ask, where you are now, what you are doing there, because I know
19 that is against the rules to talk about these things. Any kind of
20 information given outside of the units would be breaking the rule, so ...
21 But we stay in contact, and I heard for some things, but how truth they
22 are, I cannot really say now in this moment.
23 Q. Well, understanding what you've just said, was there any talk
24 about Srebrenica, any deployment to Srebrenica in 1995?
25 A. What I heard, there were some deployments there. Because
1 Srebrenica, as I told you that before, that was very hot spot which
2 needed to be, let's say, cleaned. Because they were used by the
3 terrorists and Mujahedins to go out and make the problems in the Serbian
4 villages around, and I knew that sooner or later, that spot will come to
5 the -- on top of the priority to be cleaned.
6 Q. So, what did you hear about the VJ Special Units Corps in
7 Srebrenica, if anything?
8 A. What I heard that it was -- that, as usually, 72nd Brigade was
9 always engaged in such extreme situations. I heard that they went, some
10 of them, they went there to support, let's say, VRS in the intention to
11 clean the area from the terrorists.
12 Q. Did you hear whose plan that was for the 72nd Special Brigade to
13 be involved in that operation?
14 A. To say -- to say direct that I know this man was involved, I
15 cannot say. But I know that, I heard that, that is, from the top level
16 decision whenever, as I says before, whenever such actions or somebody
17 need to move the unit, cannot move it without the permission and
18 knowledge of the HQ.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Lukic.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I have a little problem. I would
21 like to ask Mr. Thomas to assist me and tell me what was the reference in
22 the previous statement or in the interview where it says that the witness
23 was asked about the participation of his unit in the territory of
24 Srebrenica in 1995? Could Mr. Thomas point me to the exact reference.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Thomas.
1 MR. THOMAS: I'll search for that -- Madam Sutherland will search
2 for that, sir, and I'll provide it as soon as we have it. There is one
3 matter relating to Mount Zuc
4 I'm done, and I'll provide that, as soon as we have that, to you.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
6 MR. THOMAS:
7 Q. Sir, I just want to return to Mount Zuc. When we were talking
8 about the operations of the organisational structure of the 72nd Special
9 Brigade, you explained that the commander of your battalion was
10 Mr. Zivkovic?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Was he the commander of your brigade -- of your battalion also
13 during the Mount Zuc
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. He was not one of those killed, I take it?
16 A. No. No.
17 Q. Do you know what happened to him after the -- after the Zuc
18 operation in terms of promotion or otherwise?
19 A. Actually, during the 1994, he was promoted to the major. He get
20 rank of major. So -- then afterwards, I think so sometime in the
21 beginning of 1995, I'm not so sure exact the time, he was then sent to
22 the highest, let's say, schooling, so he can become a general, et cetera,
23 et cetera, for the General Staff.
24 MR. THOMAS: All right. Thank you, sir.
25 Thank you, Your Honours, that concludes my direct examination.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Thomas.
2 Mr. Lukic, are you able to start before you get that reference,
3 or do you have the reference now?
4 MR. THOMAS: I don't sir, but I'll have it very shortly.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Are you able it to start your cross-examination?
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I can start even without that, but I
7 do have a problem, and I insist on the Prosecutor pointing me to the
8 reference. I have looked at the summary first, because it really seems
9 me that the witness has never spoken about that. But I will certainly
10 start my cross-examination even without that.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: It will be given to you. As soon as the reference
12 is available, you'll be provided with it.
13 Cross-examination by Mr. Lukic:
14 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning.
15 A. [Interpretation] Good morning.
16 Q. I'm Novak Lukic, and I represent Mr. Perisic. And I'm going to
17 have some questions for you. I will be using my native language. I
18 don't mind you answering in English. However, irrespective of the
19 language that you wish to choose, we have a rule here that after I put my
20 question to you, you make a little pause before starting to answer my
21 question because, obviously, the two of us will understand each other. I
22 will do the same after your answer, maybe the best thing for you would be
23 to follow the screen. And when you see that the interpretation has
24 stopped, then you can start answering your question.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Sorry, Witness, can I suggest to you that when
1 Mr. Lukic is talking, to try to keep quiet because if you talk, your
2 voice distortion now gets -- comes out on his microphone, and you will be
3 picked up. So whenever there is a microphone that is open somewhere else
4 in court, keep quiet.
5 MR. THOMAS: Your Honour, I have that reference. I wonder if the
6 easiest thing would be if I would be permitted to cross the floor and
7 just show where it is to my learned friend.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: You can ask the usher to do that.
9 MR. THOMAS: Certainly.
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We will deal with that later. Let me
11 start with my question, and then I will have some comments with the
12 questions that were put to the witness.
13 Q. Witness, the first time you got in touch with the OTP of The
14 Hague Tribunal was in the summer of 2003; is that correct?
15 A. I can't remember the date. I believe that it was either in 2003
16 or 2004, I'm not sure.
17 Q. I'm using the date because that is the period when you provided a
18 statement to the OTP, that was in the summer of 2003, and that's why I
19 gave you the date. We will come back to that later. What I would like
20 to know is this: Did you -- were you contacted by the OTP, or did you
21 contact the OTP yourself?
22 A. You are asking me whether I was contacted by the OTP, or did I
23 call them?
24 Q. Did you call the OTP office in The Hague and wanting to talk to
25 them, or did they call you and invite you to an interview?
1 A. To be honest, I really can't remember. I only know that I was
2 contacted for an interview with The Hague investigators, and I was told
3 -- actually, they asked me a few questions during that conversation.
4 They asked me about my past and my engagement in the events that took
5 place in the former Yugoslavia
6 Q. That first conversation has been recorded. And as I have it
7 here, it lasted over a few days, maybe eight or nine in the summer of
8 2003. Do you remember that?
9 A. Yes, I do. I remember. It did last for a number of days, but I
10 don't know how many.
11 Q. And in that first interview, you offered information to the OTP,
12 the information that you were aware of about the facts regarding your
13 personal contacts or immediate knowledge about your contacts with several
14 accused here in The Hague
15 A. I didn't offer any information, as a matter of fact. I just told
16 them what I knew and what was the fact. That's all.
17 Q. You provided them with information. You told them what you
18 remembered about your immediate contact with Arkan; is that correct?
19 A. With Arkan? Yes, I knew the man, and I told them that I had
20 known him.
21 Q. About your immediate knowledge and the fact that you were aware
22 of regarding Sljivancanin; is that correct?
23 A. I don't understand what context you have in mind when you say
25 Q. You mentioned that you had seen him?
1 A. Yes, I did.
2 Q. Mrksic as well?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Slobodan Milosevic?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Jovica Stanisic?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Frenki Simatovic?
9 A. If this is to continue, I would like to point out that this may
10 serve to establish my identity. If we could go on in private session.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
12 [Private session]
11 Pages 8971-8972 redacted. Private session.
3 [Open session]
4 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honours.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
6 Yes, Mr. Lukic.
7 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. For the sake of precision, you were saying earlier something
9 about the structure of the unit, I believe that was said in open session.
10 The 72nd Brigade had three battalions; is that correct? Did you say
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. The first battalion, the military police battalion, you said
14 consisted of three companies?
15 A. The military police battalion on Mount Avala, yes.
16 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Defence counsel, please.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Microphone, Mr. Lukic.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. The brigade commander was Colonel Stupar, you said so. How many
20 men did the brigade have, do you remember that?
21 A. I don't remember.
22 Q. And one company, as far as I remember from your statement, how
23 many soldiers did one company have?
24 A. The strength varied, but in principle it was -- it had from 30 to
25 50 men.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we move into private session.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
3 [Private session]
11 Pages 8975-8981 redacted. Private session.
8 [Open session]
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: Right. We'll take a break and come back at 1.00.
10 Court adjourned.
11 --- Recess taken at 12.32 p.m. Kapor
12 --- On resuming at 12.59 p.m.
13 [The witness takes the stand]
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Lukic.
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We are still in private session. I
16 would like to tender this document into evidence, please. Could we
17 please go back into private session first of all?
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
19 [Private session]
11 Pages 8983-9001 redacted. Private session.
1 [Open session]
2 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honours.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much. The case stands adjourned to
4 tomorrow at quarter past 2.00 in the afternoon. Courtroom II. Court
6 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.45 p.m.
7 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 16th day of
8 September, 2009, at 2.15 p.m.