1 Thursday, 11 December 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.20 p.m.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon. Madam Registrar, could you call
7 the case, please.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is case
9 number IT-05-88-T, the Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic et al.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon, everybody. All the accused are
11 here. Prosecution, Mr. McCloskey. Defence teams, I only notice the
12 absence of Ms. Nikolic. The witness is already present in the courtroom.
13 Unless there are preliminaries, we can start straightaway.
14 WITNESS: MILENKO JEVDJEVIC [Resumed]
15 [Witness answered through interpreter]
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Good afternoon to you, Mr. Jevdjevic.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: We are going to continue with your testimony.
19 Mr. Petrusic.
20 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, and good afternoon,
21 Your Honours.
22 Examination by Mr. Petrusic: [Continued]
23 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Jevdjevic. Mr. Jevdjevic, before we continue
24 where we left off yesterday, I wish to go back a day in the chronology of
25 events, and could we have 5D1106, please.
1 While we are waiting for this document to come up on the screen,
2 I'd like to ask you the following: In principle, as a rule, are you
3 aware in general terms whether the protected areas of Srebrenica and Zepa
4 were passable for humanitarian convoys and whether they went through?
5 A. I know that those two protected areas, that humanitarian convoys
6 went there, and they passed through our territory, our area of
8 Q. Can you go back in your memory to the 4th of July, 1995, which
9 was a time of preparation for the operation carried out in the direction
10 of Srebrenica, and can you tell us whether on that day and in any case
11 before the 5th of July you observed movements of the army of Republika
12 Srpska, hasty movements, through the territory of the Drina Corps before
13 the 5th of July?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Yesterday we left off -- Mr. Jevdjevic, are you aware, while we
16 still have the document on the screen, that on the 4th of July convoys
17 passed through the zone of the Drina Corps?
18 A. I personally did not have any precise information as to convoys
19 passing through on the 4th of July.
20 Q. Do you have any doubts as regards this combat report dated the
21 4th of July?
22 A. I haven't had occasion to see this document before, which is why
23 I've read it now. There document deals with the passage of UNPROFOR
24 convoys at various check-points and border crossings. It describes the
25 composition of those convoys. I have no doubts about this report,
1 because everything I know from that period of time tells me that it was
2 quite normal and routine for convoys to pass through in this manner and
3 that there were never any major problems as regards the passage of
4 convoys to the protected areas and back.
5 Q. We will not be needing this document anymore. Yesterday, on page
6 29481 in line 16, you said that in the spring of 1993 the Drina Corps
7 participated in offensive actions in Cerska and Konjevic Polje, inter
8 alia, Srebrenica, Zeleni Jadar, Pribicevac. My question is as follows.
9 After that, you spoke about the forces which were prepared to participate
10 in the operation against Srebrenica in July 1995, and my question was the
11 following: Can you draw a comparison as regards the equivalence of the
12 forces participating in the combat operations around Srebrenica in 1993
13 and the number of forces participating in 1995 in June?
14 A. What I know personally - because I participated in both of those
15 operations of the corps, both in the spring of 1993 and in July [as
16 interpreted] 1995, in the zone of responsibility of the Drina Corps - is
17 that they were much large and professional forces participating in 1993
18 compared to the ones planned for 1995, because in the spring of 1993
19 around Srebrenica we had, so to speak, the most elite units which were
20 engaged in that area. I am referring particularly to the Guards Brigade,
21 to the Protection Regiment units, the Podrinje detachment of special
22 forces, and some MUP units, in addition to our other units, so that both
23 as regards manpower and the elite character of the units, I am sure that
24 in 1993 we had larger and more elite forces in that area.
25 Q. Please slow down when answering, please.
1 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] And I wish to correct the
2 transcript on page 3 in line 16. Instead of June, it should say July
4 Could we now have 5D1105.
5 Q. Yesterday, you said, I knew more or less what units were
6 participating and what their main tasks and axes of attack were.
7 Mr. Jevdjevic, did you know on the 5th of July when you set out
8 what the ultimate goal of the action Krivaja 95 was?
9 A. Just before I set out to carry out the corp task, Krivaja 95,
10 until around the 10th of July, in my estimation, I had an idea, and
11 that's how the task was convoyed to me orally when I set out to carry it
12 out, that the goal of the operation was to reduce the Srebrenica enclave
13 to the borders of the demilitarised zone and taking up those key features
14 on the south and south-east in order to prevent any further communication
15 between those two enclaves and incursions of combat units from those
17 Q. If you look at paragraph 2 here of this order -- or, rather, if
18 you look at the preamble, does what you know correspond to what the corps
19 commander Milenko Zivanovic is saying here?
20 A. It says here that Drina Corps units have the task of separating
21 the enclaves and to confine the Srebrenica enclave to an area which the
22 international community calls the demilitarised or safe areas. It's not
23 really very legible. It was sent on the 5th of July, and that was what I
24 knew when I set out to carry out this task in the Pribicevac area on the
25 5th of July.
1 Q. Please look at item 1, bullet point 3, and tell us whether the
2 task given to the 1st and the 5th Podrinje Brigades also implies a
3 simultaneous attack on Zepa.
4 A. It says here that these two brigades, the 1st and the
5 Podrinje Infantry Brigades, have the task of tying down the enemy forces
6 as far as possible and in this way coordinate with the forces acting in
7 the direction of the Srebrenica enclave. So their task was to engage in
8 demonstrative activity in a show of force in order to create an
9 impression in the Zepa Brigade that certain combat actions are being
10 carried out in order to trick them, to mislead them and prevent them from
11 coming to the assistance of the forces of the 28th Brigade in Srebrenica.
12 So this was simply a show of force on the part of those two brigades of
13 the Drina Corps, because each of them had only one battalion holding the
14 front line towards the Zepa enclave.
15 Q. Yesterday, you also said that at the Pribicevac forward command
16 post, you arrived there in the early afternoon on the 5th of July. Can
17 you tell us which officers of the Drina Corps were at the forward command
19 A. I think that on the 5th of July Colonel Vicic arrived -he was the
20 operations man in the Drina Corps - and some of the non-commissioned
21 officers from the Staff Command who had logistical duties, and I think
22 that in the early morning hours on the following day General Krstic
23 arrived at the forward command post. He was the chief of staff of the
25 Q. Were there any other officers from the Drina Corps who arrived
1 there on the 5th or 6th of July?
2 A. I don't remember any other officers from the Drina Corps, except
3 there may have been some subordinate commanders of various units who were
4 deploying their units and preparing for the operation. At the forward
5 command post, Colonel Vukota was there from before.
6 Q. Do you know the intelligence man of the Drina Corps?
7 A. In that period just before this operation, I don't know how long
8 before, the assistant commander for intelligence was Lieutenant
9 Colonel Kosoric, and I think he arrived at the forward command post in
10 Pribicevac together with General Krstic in the early morning of the 6th
11 of July.
12 Q. We have had occasion here -- I won't go into this in great
13 detail, but just for the record, we have heard about the existence of the
14 so-called mobile com centre, this communications centre that you set up
15 at this forward command post. Was it mobile?
16 A. Yes. It was a mobile communications centre.
17 Q. Please tell us, Mr. Jevdjevic, when did combat activity against
18 Srebrenica begin?
19 A. Combat activities as part of the Krivaja 95 operation began in
20 the early morning of the 6th of July.
21 Q. And did combat continue only during the daylight hours?
22 A. The combat actions were carried out only during daylight, when
23 there was visibility, from the early morning until nightfall.
24 Q. On the 6th of July, did anyone from the Main Staff come to the
25 forward command post of the Drina Corps?
1 A. No.
2 Q. Can you tell us where the axis of attack towards Srebrenica
3 was -- from what direction it came?
4 A. From Zeleni Jadar along the Zeleni Jadar-Srebrenica road. That
5 is Zeleni Jadar, Javor, Tucak, that was the axis along the Zeleni
6 Jadar-Srebrenica road, and the other axis of attack was from the general
7 area of the village of Podravanije
8 were mountain tops -- a cluster of mountain tops in the direction of
10 Q. And do you know from the north, to the north of the enclave, what
11 unit of the Drina Corps held its positions there?
12 A. To the north, that was the Rudnik, Gunjaci, Bracan sectors.
13 Positions were held by the Milici Infantry Brigade, and to the east from
14 Kuarac to Zenika, that was the Zvornik Brigade [as interpreted]. I
15 think -- I know that they had their tasks, but I know that those tasks
16 had more to do with the show of force and efforts to tie down the enemy
17 on that part of the front line because those units did not have rapid
18 reaction or manoeuvre units, units that would be capable of engaging in
19 purely offensive actions in attacks. So those were more
20 show-of-force-type actions in that part of the front line.
21 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
22 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] I just received a suggestion that
23 there is an error in the transcript at page 7, line 14. Instead of
24 "Zvornik Brigade," it should read "Bratunac Brigade."
25 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, did you indeed say that this was the Bratunac
2 A. Yes, the Bratunac Brigade. It had its positions to the east, and
3 it engaged in show-of-force actions in the direction of Srebrenica.
4 Q. And this does not -- this did not include any efforts to advance
5 in the direction of the enclave?
6 A. I think that in fact until the 11th, which was the day when
7 the -- this area was captured militarily, that they did not move from
8 their initial positions.
9 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, could you please tell us, on the 7th of July, did
10 combat continue in the direction of Srebrenica?
11 A. I remember that on the second day of the operation, that was the
12 7th of July, it rained in the night between the 6th and the 7th of July,
13 and the day was foggy and wet, and the visibility on the front line was
14 very bad, and the Drina Corps units in that area were settling down,
15 arranging its combat dispositions, but there was no combat on that day,
16 no fighting.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: Could we just get one foundational question? How
19 does he know all this? Is he getting reports? Is he listening to the
20 radio? I mean, he's the coms guy. Why does he know all this if he is in
21 his coms vehicle or what? Just -- I'm sure he can answer it quickly.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Fair enough. Could you clarify this for us,
23 Mr. Jevdjevic?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I stayed with the
25 communications equipment at all times, in the key moments of the
1 operation, and all the communications that were going on between the
2 commander of the operation - that was General Krstic - and his
3 subordinate commanders literally went through my ears because this
4 equipment had a loudspeaker, and all the communication between the
5 brigades and the brigade commanders and the corps commander was audible
6 through this loudspeaker just as we can now hear each other here in this
7 courtroom, and that was how I was able to monitor, to follow what was
8 going on on the front line at all times.
9 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. When you say a brigade, do you mean units that took part in those
11 combat operations?
12 A. Yes, that's what I mean. The selected units, those were combat
13 groups that the brigade set up from their original formation and
14 dispatched them to participate in this Operation Krivaja 95. So when I
15 say the brigade, I am referring to those groups from the original
16 brigades that took part in Krivaja 95.
17 Q. Did you have an encrypted communications network with those
19 A. As for the commanders of those units, the combat groups that took
20 part in this operation, we did have an encrypted radio network that we
22 Q. Could we please have 4D327.
23 Mr. Jevdjevic, could you please look at item 2, "Combat
24 readiness" -- "State Of Combat Readiness," and this part that begins with
25 the word "The units..." That would be the second or third passage.
1 Could you please read it to yourself, and then I'll be asking you some
3 A. I've read it.
4 Q. This description of the situation in this regular combat report,
5 does this correspond to what was actually going on on the 8th of July in
6 the area of Srebrenica?
7 A. I know that our units carried out the first initial combat
8 operations on the 8th of July, and it is indicated here that an advance
9 of one kilometre was achieved, and this probably also counts the area,
10 the no man's land between the two units, except for this part where it
11 says part of the units and the Ministry of the Interior forces are
12 constantly patrolling the territory -- or are constantly controlling the
13 territory. I was not aware of it at the time, and this report was
14 probably drafted at the Drina Corps command at Vlasenica, and they
15 probably knew that, but as far as I was concerned, I knew the first thing
16 about the front line. I was aware of the situation at the front line in
18 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Our next document is 6D22. Could
19 we please scroll down this document in the Serbian version so that we
20 could see the signature.
21 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, this is a document. It's a report from the
22 forward command post at Pribicevac. First of all, I would like to ask
23 you because you're an expert, you see that there is a handwritten note at
24 the bottom of the document in Roman alphabet. It says: "Received on the
25 9th of July, 1995, at 2320." BR number, 36. It is unclear whether it is
1 indeed 36 or maybe some corrections were made here, and there's a
2 signature. Can you explain to us, what does this mean?
3 A. I think that you can all see that this is 1995. I thought that
4 you had said 1955. The handwritten note was written by my encryptions
5 officer. He was with me at Pribicevac at the forward command post, and
6 he sent this interim combat report from the forward command post at
7 Pribicevac to the Drina Corps command, and he noted down here, since for
8 the special kind of mobile communications centre we did not have the
9 stamp that is ordinarily used, he simply jotted down that this telegram
10 was received successfully by the communications centre in Vlasenica, the
11 Drina Corps command, at 2320 hours on the 9th of July. This is his
12 signature, and this is the number of the telegram itself. I don't know
13 whether it's 36 or maybe some other number, but that's rather immaterial.
14 Q. And in accordance with your rules, when handwritten notes of this
15 kind are made by the encryption officer, should he also indicate where
16 the -- when the telegram was sent and when the telegram was received by
17 the unit to whom it was addressed?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. McCloskey.
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: You can easily rephrase it, Mr. Petrusic.
21 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, do you know what the encryption officer that is
23 actually sending the telegram must write down?
24 A. It is an internal rule among the encryption officers. I knew
25 about it, although I'm not an encryption officer myself. In order to be
1 certain that the other side received the telegram, because the
2 communications equipment that we used could be jammed at times, and it is
3 sufficient for the telegram -- it takes four or five minutes to send a
4 telegram or even maybe more. It is sufficient for just a tiny little
5 disruption to occur in the electromagnetic area and the whole telegram
6 cannot be sent. This happened often with the forward command posts. .I
7 don't know whether it was because of the jamming on the part of the
8 enemy, but we had to resend telegrams often. That is why the encryption
9 officers had to write down the time when the other side received the
10 telegram, that is, when his opposite number in the Drina Corps command
11 confirmed the receipt of this telegram. It is easy to check this. For
12 instance, if there is a document at the Drina Corps command where this
13 telegram was received, the same time should be indicated there, 2320,
14 because the encryption officer writes down the time when a receipt is
15 confirmed by his opposite number, and that is why it is indicated here,
16 received at such-and-such time.
17 Q. And this note, at any rate, is made at the Pribicevac forward
18 command post?
19 A. Yes --
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, it is. It is very much leading, Mr. Petrusic.
22 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] I withdraw the question, and I'm
23 happy with the answer.
24 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic --
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I was going to ask you to repeat it because I
1 wasn't quite sure I heard it -- I heard, but if you are withdrawing the
2 question, I think you have to remain very unhappy with the answer, which
3 will no longer be in the record.
4 Let's proceed.
5 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, where was this note made?
7 A. It was made at the forward command post at Pribicevac, and I
8 indicated at the beginning of my answer that this was written down by my
9 encryption officer at Pribicevac. That's what I said right at the
10 beginning of my first answer, and you can check that in the transcript.
11 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, let us go back to the topic of the combat
12 operations that were ongoing. We are now on the 9th of July. Do you
13 know that in that area, the area where combat operations were going on,
14 that the Dutch Battalion of the peacekeeping force was present?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Did you have any contacts with them in the course of the combat
18 A. I personally was in contact with them only once. It was on the
19 9th. I think those were the UNPROFOR members who were at the observation
20 post in the Zeleni Jadar sector. Now I'm speaking about myself. And
21 through the communications network, I heard the commanders carrying out
22 attacks on their designated axes report about UNPROFOR, about
23 encountering observation posts on their attack axes.
24 Q. And what was this personal contact that you had with UNPROFOR
1 A. On the 9th of July, on the axis of attack of our forces, that was
2 Zeleni Jadar-Srebrenica, there was an incident at the observation post.
3 I heard about it at the communications centre. One of the commanders
4 carrying out an attack on this axis reported to General Krstic that the
5 forces of the 28th Division opened fire on them and that a soldier was
6 killed in this fire, and -- and that they started pulling out towards our
7 forces and went towards Zeleni Jadar behind our lines. And since I was
8 the only officer close to General Krstic, he was there by the radio, in
9 an effort to solve -- solve this unpleasant situation - unpleasant for
10 UNPROFOR, that is - he ordered me as a professional officer to go down
11 there to Zeleni Jadar as soon as possible and to receive the UNPROFOR
12 soldiers from the observation post and to take them to safe -- to a safe
13 area, in other words, to Pribicevac. That's what I did. I went down to
14 Zeleni Jadar, and I encountered them. They were in four armoured
15 personnel carriers. They were already moving from Zeleni Jadar to the
16 roads leading to Pribicevac, and I turned my vehicle around, and I led
17 them to the safe area.
18 Q. On that occasion, did you disarm them?
19 A. No. I think there are reports to that effect. They were in
20 their combat vehicles. They did not leave their combat vehicles at all.
21 The gunner was on the turret manning the machine-gun. They went to
22 Pribicevac, remained there for a while, and then I suppose on the orders
23 of their superior command, they headed to Bratunac.
24 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, at that time did you have or did any orders reach
25 you as to how the units participating in combat should treat the civilian
1 population? We saw how they treated UNPROFOR. Were you able to hear
2 anything through the communications network as to how they should treat
3 the civilian population?
4 A. I heard General Krstic telling his commanders quite simply that
5 they should avoid any kind of conflict with UNPROFOR or any kind of fire
6 on UNPROFOR, that they should avoid any sort of firing on civilians. We
7 had no information that there actually were any civilians in the combat
8 area, and I think that in that period some telegrams with similar
9 contents arrived from the superior commands as regards the civilian
10 population, property, and so on.
11 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we have P33, please.
12 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, please take a look at this last paragraph.
13 A. I've read it.
14 Q. When referring to the telegrams arriving from the superior
15 command concerning the treatment of civilians, are you referring to this
17 A. I think this is the telegram, but I think there was another one
18 that arrived in the afternoon of the 11th. The reason I remember it is
19 that there was no one from the command at the forward command post at the
20 time, so I read the telegram. But I'm also referring to this one, yes.
21 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we have document 5D1375,
23 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, do you know who Dragomir Vasic is?
24 A. I know Dragomir Vasic. Not especially well, but I do know that
25 he was the chief of the public security station in Zvornik and that he
1 remained at that post after the war. I know him.
2 Q. We're still dealing with the 9th of July, and it's quite clear
3 from this that someone signed this telegram on behalf of Mr. Vasic.
4 However, that's not all that important at present. And in this telegram,
5 it says that in Srebrenica no population has been observed. That's what
6 it says in the first paragraph of this dispatch, if we can call it that.
7 Did your intelligence man give you any information as to where
8 the civilian population was on the 9th of July, the population of
10 A. At the forward command post there was the assistant for
11 intelligence, and he had a vehicle at the forward command post with a
12 small surveillance equipment, and we received daily information from him
13 about the communications of the 28th Division and their intentions, and I
14 did not have any information that on the 9th there were no inhabitants in
15 Srebrenica. It seems quite illogical because of some events I
16 experienced later on, the 10th and the 11th.
17 Q. Well, of course we cannot establish from this telegram what time
18 of day it was sent.
19 A. No, although it says up there that it should be encrypted, but
20 probably the cryptographer did not enter this information.
21 Q. Let's go to the sentence before the last in this telegram where
22 it says: "There is information that the enemy is in disarray and is
23 asking NATO to bomb."
24 Did your surveillance centre have this information?
25 A. On that day, no. On the 10th, we had quite reliable information
1 after restoring certain trig points to the effect that enemy resistance
2 was decreasing, but we didn't have this information on the 9th because
3 combat was still underway.
4 Q. Between you at the forward command post and the Zvornik security
5 centre, was there any exchange of information on that day?
6 A. To the best of my knowledge, no.
7 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we have 5D1365.
8 Q. We're still on the 9th of July. It says in this document, in the
9 first sentence: "The aggressor army entered the town at 1100 [as
10 interpreted] hours from the direction of Zeleni Jadar (Ucina Basca). Our
11 military command is dissolving and the members of the 28th Division of
12 the ground forces..." and so on and so forth. Then it says that: "An
13 urgent meeting is requested with the Serbian aggressors in order to find
14 a possibility to open a corridor for the population to move out and to
15 move to the nearest free territory of the Republic of Bosnia
17 Mr. Jevdjevic, did the forward command post receive this
19 A. No.
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Could we just -- I'm sorry, there was a -- it
21 said 1100 hours. I think the document said 1800. It's probably an
22 important time to get straight.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: I will imagine you agree to that, Mr. Petrusic,
24 don't you?
25 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Absolutely.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Let's proceed. Thank you, Mr. McCloskey.
2 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we have 4D336, please.
3 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, you had occasion to see this document. Can you
4 tell us briefly what was happening on the 10th of July as regards the
5 combat activities of the warring sides?
6 A. On the 10th of July in the early morning, it was still dark,
7 there was real panic at our forward command post because the enemy forces
8 of the 28th Division from Srebrenica mounted a fierce counter-attack
9 against a crucial facility or a crucial feature that we had taken in the
10 course of that operation, which is Zivkovo Brdo. That's a hill several
11 kilometres away from Srebrenica. We took it on the 9th. In the early
12 morning hours, in that counter-attack by the 28th Division, our units
13 were pushed back from that hill, and as it was still dark, the situation
14 was unclear and very unfavourable for the forces of the Drina Corps. I
15 think we had at least four or six men killed in that counter-attack by
16 the 28th Division, and the front line stabilised only at around 7.00 or
17 8.00 in the morning when we were pushed back from that feature, Zivkovo
18 Brdo hill.
19 Q. Did the units of the Drina Corps manage to come back to that
20 feature in the course of the day?
21 A. On that 10th day, certain preparations were made. There was
22 reorganisation. Some units were re-introduced which were able to conduct
23 offensive action. At around noon
24 Brdo was retaken.
25 Q. Is that when combat ceased?
1 A. No. Combat continued, but it was my general impression that
2 after our counter-attack and our retaking of Zivkovo Brdo, the resistance
3 of the forces of the 28th Division was less and less well organised.
4 Q. On the 10th of July, did any officers from the Main Staff arrive
5 at the forward command post in Pribicevac?
6 A. On the 10th of July in the morning, I think it was around 9.00,
7 the commander of the Main Staff General Mladic arrived at the forward
8 command post. He was accompanied by General Zivanovic, who was the
9 commander of the Drina Corps.
10 Q. Can you tell us how long they stayed at the forward command post
11 and what they did there, both of them?
12 A. They remained at the forward command post, more specifically at a
13 point -- an observation post 300 or 400 metres away from the forward
14 command post, and they stayed there the whole day. I was able to follow
15 through the radio communications that General Mladic, from the time of
16 his arrival onwards, spoke on the network of command and control with our
17 units participating in the operation.
18 Q. Do you know specifically to whom he issued orders?
19 A. I know specifically because I remember very well the orders he
20 issued to Lieutenant Colonel Pandurevic when he spoke with him about the
21 Zivkovo Brdo elevation. I also remember that he spoke to Colonel Andric
22 at the time, who was attacking from the eastern side, from the direction
23 of Podravanije, and that he personally issued certain orders to him when
24 he reported to him about a line he had reached and his intention of
25 taking a certain feature, and General Mladic had some assessments of his
1 own that there were no enemy on those features and that they would be
2 wasting time trying to take them. Instead, he urged him to go around
3 that feature and continue the attack without getting his men tired
5 Q. And what did continuing the attack imply?
6 A. Continuing the attack on the 10th, to the best of my knowledge,
7 meant that this group of combat groups on the Srebrenica territory had
8 the task of entering the town itself.
9 Q. So, Mr. Jevdjevic, on the 10th of July, as far as I can
10 understand you, you did not enter the town.
11 A. No. On the 10th --
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Petrusic.
14 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, where did your units remain in the course of the
16 evening of the 19th -- or, rather, the 10th of July?
17 A. General Mladic himself was urging the commanders to take the
18 dominant hills, which would enable them to exploit the success of their
19 operations, and our units remained more or less -- I know that it was in
20 the area of the Zeleni Jadar-Srebrenica road near the villages of Vrajina
21 and Bojna. Colonel Andric with his unit spent the night between the 10th
22 and 11th in the village of Petrovici
23 those were the key units in the attack.
24 Q. Could you tell us on the 11th of July how combat operations
25 proceeded -- or, rather, what knowledge do you have, direct knowledge or
1 knowledge that you gained from the radio traffic?
2 A. I know that the attack continued along the main axis and that our
3 units reached the village of Bojna
4 regrouping. Now I'm talking about the units that were attacking from the
5 east. It was a company from the 2nd Romanija Brigade, and then at around
7 attacked by NATO aircraft and Kuarac and Pribicevac sectors were also
8 strafed by machine-guns from those aircraft.
9 Q. And on the 10th -- or, rather, the 11th of July, did you know
10 anything about the Milici Brigade, whether it was moving from its
12 A. I've already said that the Milici Brigade, to the best of my
13 recollection, throughout the operation up until the 11th it remained on
14 its initial positions and was engaged in mainly show-of-force-type
15 activities in order to tie down the enemy forces on that part of the
16 front line.
17 Q. After the NATO air-strikes on your positions, did General Mladic
18 go back to the forward command post, and Generals Krstic, Zivanovic?
19 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Petrusic.
21 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, do you know where after the air-strikes Generals
23 Mladic, Krstic, and Zivanovic were?
24 A. During the air-strikes, they were successively at two
25 observations posts at Kula and Kuarac. Those are two hills near the
1 Pribicevac forward command post, and to the best of my recollection,
2 around one hour after the air-strikes ended and after the attack by our
3 forces continued, they went in -- each in their own vehicle towards
4 Srebrenica from that area.
5 Q. And did you remain at Pribicevac?
6 A. I remained at the Pribicevac forward command post, and I followed
7 the developments, the combat situation, from radio traffic.
8 Q. Can you tell us how the situation developed and how long you
9 remained at Pribicevac?
10 A. We had information that the forces of the 28th Division ceased
11 with their resistance and that they pulled out from Srebrenica, for the
12 most part to the broader -- in fact, to north-west, and that they were
13 instructing the population from Srebrenica to go to the UNPROFOR compound
14 at Potocari. The units that carried out the attack were setting up the
15 combat disposition at the fringe areas, and I remained at the forward
16 command post at Pribicevac up until around 1900 hours on that day.
17 Q. Do you know whether the troops, the soldiers, actually entered
19 A. With the mobile communications centre that was mounted on a
20 vehicle, I and my soldiers went through Srebrenica on the 10th [as
21 interpreted]. It was around -- at around 2000 hours. In the town
22 itself, I did not see any of our soldiers.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: I think there's just a mistake, in the English,
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Petrusic. Do you agree to that?
1 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Yes, absolutely. It should say
2 the 11th.
3 Q. So, Mr. Jevdjevic, you passed --
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Agreed. Let's -- let's proceed.
5 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Okay.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: But I think Mr. Jevdjevic himself can confirm that.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could you please just tell me what
8 this is all about? Perhaps I made a slip of the tongue. It was the
9 11th, the 11th that I passed through Srebrenica. I can't recall what it
10 was that I actually said, but the date is the 11th. That's when I left
11 the forward command post. It was at around 2000 hours. Well, I stated
12 this enumerable times.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: That's what we want to hear. It's probably not
14 your fault, anyway. So let's proceed.
15 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. As you passed through Srebrenica, did you notice any damage in
17 the town itself? I mean recent damage.
18 A. That was the first time that I passed through the town ever, and
19 I really paid attention as I was passing through this small town. I
20 could see that there was damage caused by rifle bullets, holes on the
21 facades of the houses. I don't know whether this was caused at an
22 earlier date or when it was caused, but the town itself was rather dirty,
23 and it was not well-kept. But I did not see a lot of damage caused by
24 artillery pieces of a larger calibre.
25 Q. And did you notice any -- anything burning?
1 A. In the town itself I did not see anyone, and I couldn't see
2 anyone who would be there to set things on fire. I saw just a few
3 elderly people leaving Srebrenica in the direction of Potocari with --
4 with their luggage, and these are the only people that I saw.
5 Q. Did you pass through Potocari on the 11th of July on your way to
7 A. At dusk I headed towards Bratunac taking the shortest route, and
8 I passed through Potocari. It's a suburb around four kilometres away
9 from Srebrenica, and I passed through it.
10 Q. Could you tell us, did you notice anything in particular at
12 A. In Potocari, I saw to the left and to the right of the road a
13 huge number of civilians. I wouldn't want to make any estimates, but
14 this is what I took away as an impression, a large number of civilians.
15 I also saw UNPROFOR members. They were mingled in small groups. I could
16 see the compound, which was to the right. I even saw the place where two
17 or three armoured personnel carriers were fenced off. I assumed that
18 this was a tank that had been seized, and I saw a few Serb soldiers with
19 rifles on their soldiers talking to the civilians in Potocari.
20 Q. Did you notice any instances of abuse or mistreatment of the
21 civilians that you saw in Potocari done by the Serb soldiers?
22 A. As I passed through Potocari, I did not stop my vehicle at all.
23 I rolled past by the people very slowly because there were people on the
24 road, too, and I did not observe any abuse or mistreatment or anything
25 similar to that.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
2 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. And where did you go from Potocari?
4 A. To the command of the Bratunac Brigade in Bratunac, passing
5 through a check-point at the place called Zuti Most.
6 Q. And whom did you find in the Bratunac Brigade command?
7 A. When I got there, I first sought my communications officers --
8 officer who had gone with General Krstic to learn whether there were any
9 news that affected me that had come in the meantime after I left for the
10 Pribicevac forward command post. I also met with General Krstic, and
11 later on, on the -- at 2200 hours on the 11th of July, I attended a
12 meeting at the Bratunac Brigade command.
13 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, I will not examine you about this meeting. Could
14 you just tell me briefly whether you left the forward command post at
15 Pribicevac on your own initiative, or did somebody order you to -- did
16 somebody order you to do so?
17 A. Nobody ordered me to pack up the communications centre and to
18 leave the forward command post. It was my personal assessment. It was
19 my own initiative, and soldiers are allowed to take it if they are ready
20 to face the consequences, but we simply had information that the
21 28th Division is trying to break through in groups. Smaller elements
22 were moving towards Zepa and some other areas, and a larger element was
23 moving -- trying to move towards Tuzla
24 dangerous to remain in that area, in that spot. And it is a matter of
25 military logic that when the combat disposition moves, the forward
1 command post must move with it. And I thought that I could establish a
2 communications on the move if General Krstic needed it. So without any
3 special orders on his part, I went to Bratunac, and he considered this to
4 be quite normal and proper when we met in Bratunac.
5 Q. Throughout this time, from the afternoon of the 11th when you
6 parted ways with General Krstic, was General Krstic able to establish
7 contact with you at all times?
8 A. Yes. My communications officer, my signals officer went with
9 him. He had the encryption-enabled mobile communications equipment, and
10 even if because of the lay of the land he was unable to establish contact
11 with me, he could always establish contact with other participants in the
12 command communications network, and then they could relay the message to
14 Q. At this meeting at the Bratunac Brigade command, did you get any
16 A. Yes. At that meeting, General Mladic personally gave me a task,
17 to set up the communications centre in Krivace that very evening, and
18 that would be the communications centre for the attack on Zepa.
19 Q. And did you in fact go to Krivace after that?
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading. "Where did you go?"
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Petrusic.
22 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, after this meeting, what did you do?
24 A. I went to carry out the task that I was given by General Mladic.
25 Q. And could you tell us what route you took?
1 A. Bratunac, Kravica, Konjevic Polje, Kasaba, Milici, and up to
2 Vlasenica where the corps command was located.
3 Q. And en route, did you see any military units?
4 A. No.
5 Q. And did you notice any armed formations?
6 A. On the part of the road between Konjevic Polje and Kravica or
7 somewhere there, I did notice two or three -- three smaller groups at
8 various locations, groups of people wearing blue uniforms.
9 Q. Blue uniforms were worn by MUP members, were they not?
10 A. Yes.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, I'm going to object and ask that
12 question be withdrawn and asked again.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Do you wish to respond to that,
14 Mr. Petrusic, before we decide?
15 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] No, Mr. President. I will
16 rephrase the question.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Before you rephrase it, just give us a second.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 MR. HAYNES: Would you mind if I contributed to this, since this
20 is my witness? There can't possibly be a ...
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Yes, Mr. Haynes.
22 MR. HAYNES: Is it sensibly in dispute that MUP members wore blue
23 uniforms or that this witness, who has given evidence for many, many days
24 previously and been cross-examined by the Prosecution, went to Krivace
25 after he left the meeting at Bratunac? These are all matters of
1 adjudicated fact that are beyond context to quote back at Mr. McCloskey
2 his own objections of yesterday. He really is just wasting the Court's
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
5 MR. McCLOSKEY: It is in contest about blue uniforms. We have
6 seen lots of video and maybe one blue uniform. I don't want to get into
7 the facts, but this is major area of contest. There is no evidence that
8 there's anybody in blue uniforms and no significant evidence that I
9 recall, anyway. So there's more to come before he comes to Krivace. So
10 I've been trying not to object all the time, but I'm trying to object to
11 get the time the message across that I prefer not to have leading so that
12 when we get to the key areas the witness can answer. That's why I'm
13 objecting at all.
14 Some of these -- I will agree. Perhaps I don't need to object,
15 but I'm trying to get the message across, which is not coming across. So
16 now I'm going to be objecting all the time, which I prefer not to.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Now, let's make ourselves clear on this. In this
18 Tribunal, in this Trial Chamber, we have always acknowledged the fact
19 that leading questions can be made unless objected to. It doesn't mean
20 to say that if they are objected to, and even if they are leading, it's
21 always the case of disallowing them, particularly since although we adopt
22 this common law approach in relation to leading questions. Still, this
23 is a court of law where we don't have a jury, and the whole -- I mean,
24 the main, main raison d'etre behind disallowing leading questions is
25 perhaps the fact that there is a jury that can be unduly impressed.
1 Now, we believe that we should be a little bit more tolerant in
2 areas where we can safely proceed ahead without major confrontation or
3 without major prejudice being caused. We don't feel that in this area,
4 for example, the fact that the question was leading, and there is no
5 doubt that it was leading, and is a major prejudice or any prejudice for
6 that matter is being done, so we are allowing the question and suggest
7 that we try to limit our objections as much as possible to when the case
8 warrants an objection.
9 Mr. Petrusic, do you want me to repeat your question?
10 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Mr. Petrusic's question was the following to
12 you, Mr. Jevdjevic: He put it to you that blue uniforms were worn by MUP
13 members, and he asks a rhetorical question whether this wasn't the case,
14 and you had answered yes. Do you wish to add anything to that?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have nothing to add to this
16 except for the fact that I have no knowledge as to what unit, according
17 to the establishment, those men belonged to, but I would see soldiers
18 around every day, and yet on that day I saw men in blue uniforms, and I
19 assumed that they were members of the civilian police. But as to what
20 unit according to the establishment they belonged to, I don't know that
21 to this day.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Shall we have the break now? If it's more
23 convenient for you to finish this area, perhaps in the next two minutes
24 or so, then we continue. Otherwise, we have a break.
25 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, you finally arrived in Vlasenica. Did you arrive
2 there that night on the 11th of July?
3 A. Yes. I arrived in the command of the Drina Corps in Vlasenica at
4 about 2400 hours.
5 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this might be a good
6 time for a break.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. We will have, incidentally, a 20-minute
8 break today. The next break or the one following would also be of the
9 same duration. However, we'll finish at quarter to 7.00 instead of at
11 --- Recess taken at 3.45 p.m.
12 --- On resuming at 4.08 p.m.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's continue, Mr. Petrusic.
14 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, in the course of yesterday you testified about the
16 events connected with Zeleni Jadar in early June 1995 and said, inter
17 alia, that you were among the participants in that operation.
18 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could I have 5D1374, please.
19 Q. This document is dated the 12th of June, 1995. It was issued by
20 the Ministry of the Interior in Zvornik -- or, rather, its chief, the
21 chief of the centre, Dragomir Vasic, and his signature is on the second
22 page of this document. The document bears the title: "Information about
23 the condition of the factory in Zeleni Jadar."
24 Could we move to page 2, please. In the Serbian version, it's
25 page 2, and also in the English version, also page 2, item 4 where it
1 says the following: "The army has failed to do what has been agreed with
2 President Karadzic because it has not seized another two elevations; in
3 addition, the road leading to the factory is under the control of the
4 Turks so that the equipment cannot be relocated."
5 Mr. Jevdjevic, do you know something about an agreement between
6 the army and President Karadzic concerning this action?
7 A. No.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] We will no longer be needing this
11 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, I would like to move on to another topic. This
12 will be my last topic, and it concerns the combat activities connected
13 with Zepa. You told us that General Mladic, on the 11th of July in the
14 evening, issued an order to you to establish a communications centre at
15 Krivace. When did you set up this communications centre?
16 A. At the new forward command post at Krivace, I established this
17 new communications centre in the afternoon of the 12th of July.
18 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we have P114, please. And
19 we could go on to page 4 right away, item 10.
20 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, did you or your communications organ participate
21 in preparing the communications at the forward command post according to
22 this item?
23 A. Yes. Here the order is issued that in the village of Krivace
24 the 13th of July at 1800 hours, the forward command post should begin
25 functioning, and I had already set up the communications as an element of
1 that forward command post.
2 Q. And when you went to Zepa or at a later date, did you receive
3 this order?
4 A. No.
5 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we now have P3748, please.
6 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, this document -- well, is it familiar to you?
7 A. I have seen it. I saw it a few days ago when preparing for this
9 Q. Do you know the code-name of operation -- or, rather, the
10 operation that was connected with Zepa?
11 A. The name was Stupcanica 95.
12 Q. Here we see -- well, first of all, do you know who issued this
14 A. If the usher could show it to me. I assume it was the chief of
15 communications of the corps, but if I could see.
16 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we have the last page of
17 this document, please.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. This document was drawn up
19 and sent to these units by Lieutenant Colonel Nedo Blagojevic as it says
20 on the telegram. He was the head of -- or chief of communications.
21 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, can you explain why on the 13th of July, 1995
23 when this communications plan was being forwarded, is the reference made
24 to Operation Krivaja 95?
25 A. Well, probably for the sole reason that the plan remained the
1 same, the plan that had been used in Krivaja 95. So most probably the
2 same plan was applied to the future operation. This telegram was sent
3 only to two units which did not participate in Krivaja 95, and according
4 to plan they were to take part in Stupcanica 95, and this was forwarded
5 to them so that they would have the plan of the radio network.
6 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, I don't want to delve into these communications
7 further. I think we've heard enough about the communications systems in
8 the army of Republika Srpska, but please tell us briefly whether this
9 forward command post at Krivace functioned in the same way as regards
10 communications as did the forward command post at Pribicevac.
11 A. Yes, in exactly the same way. The only thing that chained were
12 the azimuths of the antennae in two locations, because the forward
13 command post had moved to another location and two brigades were added on
14 as reserve participants, two brigades which had not participated in the
15 previous operation.
16 Q. Tell us, what officers of the Drina Corps were present at this
17 forward command post?
18 A. At the Krivace forward command post and later on at other forward
19 command post in Operation Stupcanica 95, the officers from the Drina
20 Corps who were present were General Krstic; Colonel Vicic, an operations
21 officer; Lieutenant Colonel Osoric, who was an intelligence man; and I
22 think a staff sergeant from the corps command.
23 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness repeat his name, please.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Could you repeat the name, please? Yes, but --
25 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, you mentioned General Krstic; Colonel Vicic, an
2 operations officer. Can you tell us, who else was there among the
4 A. There was Lieutenant Colonel Kosoric and -- well, that was
5 Svetozar Kosoric and Momir Amovic a staff sergeant from the Staff Command
6 of the Drina
7 Q. Were you still at the communications lines as you had been during
8 Operation Krivaja?
9 A. Yes.
10 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we have 5D1112, please.
11 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, tell us briefly, when did the combat activities
12 against Zepa begin?
13 A. On the 14th of July, 1995.
14 Q. And were they conducted continuously, without interruption?
15 A. To the best of my recollection, there were two or three
16 cease-fires which lasted for different periods of time, and they had to
17 do with the negotiations conducted by the two warring sides. The
18 political and military authorities from Srebrenica negotiated with our
19 negotiators concerning the hand-over of weapons and the evacuation of the
20 population from Zepa. There were cease-fires during those negotiations.
21 Q. We have an interim combat report here, which is dated the 19th of
22 July, 1995, and it refers to the cease-fire and the evacuation of Muslims
23 from Zepa. Can you tell us, who participated on the side of the army of
24 Republika Srpska? Who participated in these negotiations? Do you know
1 A. I know that but not directly, from my own experience. I know
2 that the place where the negotiations were held was at Boksanica, near
3 the observation post there, and I know through the communications that
4 General Krstic took part. Well, I know that anyway. But I also know
5 through the communications that from the military, from the army of
6 Republika Srpska, it was General Mladic who participated in those
7 negotiations. I assume that General Tolimir also took part in the
8 negotiations, because according to the information that I received from
9 the radio communications, he was at Boksanica, the sector of Boksanica.
10 Q. Do you know about the presence of the representatives of the
11 international community at those talks or negotiations?
12 A. General Krstic told me upon his return from one round of talks
13 that the international community -- or, rather, the UNPROFOR was
14 represented by General Smith. He was there with some of his officers,
15 staff officers.
16 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Could we please have 5D1116.
17 Q. The date is the 25th of July. Mr. Jevdjevic, please tell me, at
18 the time when you arrived at Zepa, at Krivace, some ten days had gone in
19 the intervening period. Could you tell us who, if indeed anyone, from
20 the Main Staff came to this forward command post where you were?
21 A. At the Krivace forward command post and later on at Glodjane,
22 General Mladic came several times on behalf of the Main Staff or from the
23 Main Staff.
24 Q. You told us that you did know about the participation of the
25 members of the army of Republika Srpska and UNPROFOR in negotiations, and
1 do you know who took part in the negotiations from the Muslim side?
2 A. I asked General Krstic upon his return from the negotiations on
3 one occasion who participated from the opposite side, and he said that
4 those were the representatives of the civilian authorities, Dr. Benjamin
5 Kulovac and another man. I think his last name may have been Stitkovac
6 or something like that, or Torlak, Hamdija Torlak, something to that
7 effect. They were representatives of the political authorities in -- of
8 the political government in Zepa, in the enclave of Zepa.
9 Q. Could you please look at this document dated the 25th of July,
10 1995, and could you tell me, do you know that there was an evacuation of
11 the civilian population from Zepa?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Do you know how long this evacuation lasted?
14 A. I think about two days.
15 Q. And did you know or do you know whether representatives of
16 UNPROFOR were present during the evacuation?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And do you know what battalion or, rather, what military
19 formation of the UN was deployed on observation posts in the Zepa
21 A. It was a Ukrainian unit.
22 Q. You said that this evacuation lasted for two days. Do you know
23 how long the fighting around the enclave of Zepa lasted?
24 A. Up until the beginning of August. I think the 2nd of August,
1 Q. And can you tell us if there was any resistance on the part of
2 the Muslim armed units, and where did they mount this resistance after
3 the evacuation?
4 A. I know that there were negotiations going on about the evacuation
5 of, first, the wounded and then the civilians and then the soldiers of
6 Zepa, and I know that our side presented those ideas at the negotiations,
7 but probably the military forces of the Zepa Brigade decided not to
8 evacuate using that route. They probably did not feel safe and secure.
9 I don't know what the reason was. I only know that after the population
10 was evacuated, our forces were once again in a position to continue with
11 the combat operations, and the combat operations continued. The Zepa
12 Brigade was in retreat, moving in the direction of Zepske Kolibe and the
13 trig point Zlovrh. Particularly fierce resistance was offered in that
14 sector, Zlovrh and Zepske Kolibe. One of our commanders was wounded,
15 Colonel Trivic, in the fighting at Zlovrh and Zepske Kolibe. And after
16 two or three days of fighting, this area was also taken, and, indeed, I
17 moved the communications centre of the forward command post to the Zlovrh
18 hill where it remained for two or three days. That's where the forward
19 command post of the Drina Corps was for that period. And then, on the
20 basis of the intelligence that we received, we learned that the main
21 force of the Zepa Brigade transferred to Serbia across the Drina River
22 or, rather, at that time it was the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
23 Q. So after the evacuation ended and before you moved the forward
24 command post to Zlovrh in the intervening period, did you have an
25 opportunity to hear General Mladic over the radio?
1 A. General Mladic was at the Glodjane forward command post after the
2 evacuation ended, and he followed the operations conducted by our forces
3 as they pursued the enemy towards Zepske Kolibe and Zlovrh. He had a
4 pair of binoculars, and I think that he was talking to the commanders
5 that were advancing along this axis. I remember that.
6 Q. Can you tell us, when was the last time that you saw him in that
8 A. Well, maybe two days after the evacuation, approximately. That's
9 when the pursuit operations in which enemy forces were pursued towards
10 Zlovrh were conducted.
11 Q. And do you know where General Mladic went after that?
12 A. After that, General Mladic left to the western theatre in Krajina
13 by helicopter from a location nearby because news had been coming in
14 about big problems that were going on at the western front in Republika
16 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] And at the very end, could I
17 please have document P3038.
18 Q. Mr. Jevdjevic, could you please scroll down this document in the
19 Serbian version so that we can see who signed it. That would be at
20 page 2 of the English version.
21 Mr. Jevdjevic, in the course of your evidence today you said
22 several times -- or, rather, that during the day you knew about
23 General Mladic's movements and that the last time that you saw him on the
24 11th of July was around 10 -- around 2200 hours at Bratunac Brigade.
25 Here we have a document dated the 11th of July, 1995
1 signed by General Ratko Mladic, SR, and could you please tell us, in the
2 heading of the document it is indicated Republika Srpska, strictly
3 confidential number 03/41616. So in addition to what you knew, because
4 you were a communications officer and this was your basic job in the
5 army, could you tell us, where could this telegram have been sent from if
6 you saw General Mladic in the Srebrenica and Bratunac area the whole day?
7 A. General Mladic could use the equipment in the communications
8 network to send this document to anyone from any communications centre
9 that had encrypted teleprinter lines. Since I see on this stamp that is
10 filled in by the cryptographers, this document was received at 1945
11 hours. It was encrypted by the cryptographer in two minutes. So it was
12 processed at 1947, and then one minute later it was sent to the units. I
13 assume that at that time, at the time when this document was drafted and
14 signed, it should have already been drafted and signed, and I assume that
15 General Mladic, given the time that he entered Srebrenica with
16 General Krstic and General Zivanovic, he probably issued some other tasks
17 and made the assessment of the situation that he couldn't have gone
18 further than Bratunac. So I suppose he did have the technical capability
19 to send it from the communications centre of the Bratunac Brigade because
20 I saw him at 2200 hours when we had this meeting. The meeting ended at
21 around 2300 hours. It is my opinion that this telegram -- well, he had
22 the technical capabilities, and I assume that he sent it from the
23 communications centre of the Bratunac Brigade.
24 MR. PETRUSIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, this completes my
25 examination. There is a mistake in the transcript at page 2, I think, at
1 line 2. Instead of cross-examination, it should read
2 examination-in-chief, but that's not so important. Thank you.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: As you say, it isn't important.
4 Mr. Zivanovic and Mr. Haynes, have you come to an agreement as to
5 who is going first?
6 MR. HAYNES: Yes. We had a fortunate meeting in the street this
7 afternoon, and I told Mr. Zivanovic I would go next.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So take your time, Mr. Haynes, and go
10 MR. HAYNES: Yes. I was going to start by asking for the
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, and if you could also kindly introduce
13 yourself to the witness please.
14 MR. HAYNES: Certainly. I was going to start by craving your
15 indulgence, Mr. President. The examination of Mr. Petrusic has covered
16 quite a lot of the areas which I had anticipated dealing with this
17 witness, and accordingly I do not believe that the estimate I gave of, I
18 think, four hours, is remotely accurate. I think it's more likely I'll
19 be about half that time. But I would, notwithstanding the fact that
20 we've had a shortened sitting today, welcome the opportunity of reviewing
21 the transcript overnight before closing my examination in chief of this
22 witness if that is okay with you.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, by how much shorter will your
24 examination-in-chief --
25 MR. HAYNES: If I was not clear - I thought I was - I thought --
1 it's about half as long as I anticipated it would be.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: How long -- so about two hours.
3 MR. HAYNES: Yeah.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, I think we have less than two hours. Let me
5 just check the time now. According to the transcript, it's 1645. Yes.
6 We have less than two hours, anyway, so that would not be a problem,
7 Mr. Haynes.
8 MR. HAYNES: Thank you very much. Well --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Our suggestion is to have the break any time it's
10 convenient to you between 5.30 and 5.40.
11 MR. HAYNES: That's very kind of you.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
13 Cross-examination by Mr. Haynes:
14 Q. Well, good afternoon, Mr. Jevdjevic.
15 A. Good afternoon.
16 Q. You know who I am. I'm counsel for Vinko Pandurevic, and you and
17 I had the opportunity to discuss the evidence you might give last week
18 for a couple of days, didn't we?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And I really want to begin by giving the Court, through you, an
21 overview of your professional relationship with Mr. Pandurevic during the
22 course of the war in Bosnia
23 A. I had occasion to get to know Mr. Pandurevic before the war while
24 he was serving in Slovenia
25 the war I know that for a time, when he had just arrived in the army of
1 Republika Srpska, he was the commander of the Visegrad Tactical Group,
2 and after that the commander of the Zvornik Brigade.
3 Q. Thank you. Now, in your capacity as commander of the
4 Communications Battalion of the Drina Corps, you yourself took part in a
5 number of operations in the field, didn't you?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And I think on a number of occasions, you took part in operations
8 that Vinko Pandurevic was also taking part in.
9 A. Yes. I took part in several operations carried out in the area
10 of the Drina Corps, and we participated together in some operations
11 carried out in the zone of the 1st Krajina Corps.
12 Q. Thank you. Now, I'm just going to run through them briefly, and
13 I have authority, I think, to put the names and dates to you to save a
14 bit of time. I think, firstly, in about March of 1993 you took part in
15 an operation for Konjevic Polje. Is that correct?
16 A. Yes. That was an operation of the Drina Corps in which both I
17 and Mr. Pandurevic as the commander of the Visegrad Brigade participated.
18 Q. Thank you. And could you just briefly describe for us what
19 capacities each of you had in relation to that operation.
20 A. I was the communications battalion commander, and he was the
21 commander of the Zvornik Brigade.
22 Q. Thank you. Now, in the late spring and early summer of 1993, I
23 think you took part in operations Mac 1 from Rogatica to Ustipraca and
24 Mac 2 towards Gorazde and Cajnice. Is that correct?
25 A. Yes. I also participated in that operation as the commander of
1 the communications battalion and the officer in charge of setting up the
2 communications centre at the forward command post for that operation and
3 Lieutenant Colonel Vinko Pandurevic, I think he was a major at the time,
4 was then the commander of a combat group which participated in that
5 operation Mac or Sword 1 on later on Mac or Sword 2.
6 Q. I want to leave that there, but I want to come back to that in a
7 little more detail later on. But I think in July of 1993, you also took
8 part in Lukavac 93, an operation towards Trnovo, Bijelasnica, and Igman.
9 A. Yes. I participated in that operation, also, as an officer in
10 charge of organising and setting up the communications centre for the
11 unit from the Drina Corps which participated in the operations towards
12 Igman and Bijelasnica. This operation was conducted in the zone of
13 responsibility of the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps.
14 Q. And for what it's worth, where was your forward command post in
15 relation to that operation?
16 A. The forward command post -- my first forward command post was on
17 Mount Jahorina
18 Trnovo and later on in villages called Ledici, Ostojici and so on.
19 Q. Thank you. In the autumn of 1994, I think you took part in an
20 operation in the Krajina in the area of Novi Grad where Vinko Pandurevic
21 was your commander.
22 A. Yes. For the needs of the combat in that part of the war
23 theatre, the Drina Corps was given the task of establishing a brigade
24 drawn from all the units and sending it to the western war theatre. The
25 commander of that brigade was Major Pandurevic, and I was his deputy in
1 that brigade.
2 Q. Thank you. And that is another operation I'll come back to in a
3 little more detail later on. But you've already told us that in the
4 spring of 1995, you took part in Operation Spreca. Can you confirm that
5 then-Lieutenant Colonel Pandurevic was also a party to that operation?
6 A. Yes, Lieutenant Colonel Pandurevic also participated in that
7 operation. The 4th Serbian Brigade was introduced into the attack in the
8 area of responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade so that his units were my
9 right and left neighbours, and Lieutenant Colonel Pandurevic was fully in
10 command of his brigade during that operation.
11 Q. And your position within that operation was what?
12 A. In that operation, I was the Chief of Staff of a temporary unit
13 that was formed. It was in fact a brigade called the 4th Serbian
15 Q. Thank you. And one more thing about Operation Spreca. Did that
16 also involve, as an officer, Major Dragan Obrenovic?
17 A. Yes. Major Dragan Obrenovic also participated in that operation.
18 He was the Chief of Staff in the Zvornik Brigade, and he was rather
19 seriously wounded in the leg in the course of that operation due to an
20 explosion of a mortar shell.
21 Q. Thank you. You've anticipated my next question. You've told us,
22 and I won't say any more than this, about your involvement in Operations
23 Krivaja 95 and Stupcanica 95. In August of 1995, were you also present
24 at combat activities in Drvar in the Krajina where Lieutenant Colonel
25 Pandurevic was commander of a unit?
1 A. Yes. In that period, the Drina Corps established a brigade from
2 its composition and sent it to the area of responsibility of the 2nd
3 Krajina Corps, because there were huge problems in that period in that
4 part of the battlefield. The commander of that brigade of the Drina
5 Corps in that part of the war theatre was Lieutenant Colonel Vinko
6 Pandurevic, and he remained there for a rather long period of time. I
7 was in Drvar organising communications and carrying out an exchange of my
8 men from the Communications Battalion, and I was at his forward command
9 post for a few days, and then I returned to the corps command in
11 Q. Thank you. So if we can just summarise the state of your
12 relationship, you knew Vinko Pandurevic as a soldier from his time in
14 Would that be right?
15 A. Yes, that's right.
16 Q. And you knew him as a soldier both in peacetime and in wartime?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And to summarise what you've just told us in a few minutes, in
19 the course of about 30 months you participated in eight combat operations
20 with him. Take it from me, Mr. Jevdjevic, there are eight of them.
21 Now, can we move on -- or, rather, backwards to Operations Mac 1
22 and Mac 2 in the spring of 1993. Who was responsible for the conduct of
23 that operation?
24 A. From the Drina Corps, the commander of the forward command post
25 was the then-operations officer of the Drina Corps, Colonel Dragomir
1 Milosevic. He was a Colonel at the time.
2 Q. And your function?
3 A. My task was to ensure communications -- or, rather, to set up the
4 communications centre to be used to command that operation.
5 Q. And in practical terms, what did that mean?
6 A. In practice, this meant that General -- or, rather, Colonel
7 Milosevic at the time had to be provided with constant communications
8 with all the combat groups participating in that operation. I should
9 follow those communications and always be ready to intervene if they were
11 Q. And we'll deal with this in relation to three or four operations,
12 but is the communications centre always synonymous with the forward
13 command post of an operation?
14 A. The communications centre is only one of the elements of a
15 forward command post.
16 Q. But -- but in terms of geographical location, do they tend to be
17 at the same place?
18 A. In all these operations, the communications centre is always in
19 the same geographic location as the forward command post, and this may
20 sound incredible but we all were within an area of some hundred square
21 metres or so. These were small forward command posts, sometimes under a
22 tent, often under a tent.
23 Q. And we'll deal with this operation by operation as we go along,
24 but I think we can all understand that you can hear communications
25 between the commander and the units and possibly between the units on the
1 ground. Did you tend as a communications officer to have visual
2 capability as well? In other words, could you see what was going on in
3 relation to these operations?
4 A. I was always duty-bound to follow the condition of the
5 communications and the situation and to follow the conversations because
6 that was the only way in which I could follow whether the communications
7 were functioning, and in this way I understood the situation on the
8 ground. But to organise communications in such cases, we always used
9 radio equipment operating in a frequency range, which is such that the
10 best quality communications are achieved if there is optical visibility,
11 and all the commanders at the forward command post always try to be in a
12 geographical location from which they could visually observe the
13 battlefield and thus be in the best position to survey the situation in
14 order to make the best possible decisions.
15 Q. Thank you for the answer, but I sense you might just be talking a
16 little bit too quickly for the translators, so just slow down a little
18 Now, I'm going to remind you now of Operations Mac 1 and Mac 2 by
19 showing you a document, which is 65 ter 5D1169, an order of the 22nd of
20 May. So could we have that into e-court, please.
21 Do you have the document on your screen now, Mr. Jevdjevic?
22 A. Yes, I see the first page.
23 Q. This is a Main Staff document addressed to the commands of the
25 Brigade. You can confirm that, can you?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And I just briefly would direct your attention to paragraph 2,
3 and then I'd like the document, please, moved on so that you can see page
4 2 in the B/C/S, and we who speak English can see page 3, please.
5 Let me know what you've finished reading.
6 A. I've read it.
7 Q. Thank you. And it's not a massive question, but does that recall
8 for you the purposes of the operations you took part in in May and June
9 of 1993?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. As an aside, this operation, was it in a part of Bosnia that was
12 very familiar to you?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. If nobody minds me leading, because your family came from there?
15 A. Yes. I was born in that part of Bosnia, and my family still
16 lives there.
17 Q. And was it your understanding that the principal purpose of the
18 operation to disarm Muslim formations and give civilians the choice of
19 staying under Serbian rule or moving to Central Bosnia?
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Haynes.
22 MR. HAYNES: It's in the document, but I'll move on. Now --
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: I disagree with that.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you wish to argue this?
25 MR. HAYNES: No, I'm not going to argue. To quote Mr. McCloskey,
1 we've got to finish this case sometime.
2 Can we now move on, please, to 7D624 so that we can see, as it
3 were, the effect of the operation on the ground.
4 I'm hoping 65 ter 7D624 will come up in e-court soon.
5 Now, I always feel like I'm taking my life in my hands by putting
6 maps into e-court, but I think if we enlarge this twice and configure the
7 screen so that Gorazde is in the bottom left-hand corner, Rogatica at the
8 very top, and Visegrad on the far right. That's quite good. I think we
9 might even be able to -- can Gorazde go down a little bit further? No,
10 that's up. That's fine.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Do you wish to zoom further? It will make it more
13 MR. HAYNES: Let's try one zoom further because I'm going to
14 attempt to get all the markings done on this in one go. Now, if we can
15 push Visegrad over to the right, Rogatica up.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: You have Gorazde --
17 MR. HAYNES: Yes, that's perfect.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: I think this is better.
19 MR. HAYNES: Yes, that's as good as it gets. I think if at all
20 possible, if Rogatica could just move a wee bit north, it would help,
21 because we need the area beneath the river. That is perfect. Thank you
22 very much indeed.
23 Q. We saw from the Main Staff order, Mr. Jevdjevic, that this was an
24 operation which involved the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps as well. In a short
25 time, I'm going to ask you to be given a pen from which you can mark the
1 screen, please, and I wonder if you could start by marking with an arrow
2 the axis of the attack of the Sarajevo
3 knew it.
4 A. I assume you are referring to the Drina Corps, because at that
5 time we were carrying out operations in the general area of Gorazde, and
6 that's what it says in the order sent from the Main Staff, which was the
7 previous document. The front line and the task at the forward command
8 post commanded by Colonel Milosevic, more or less from the positions then
9 held by the Rogatica Brigade, Vrasalici, Cadovina, Trnovo, and Sljivno,
10 the task was to come out on the left bank of the River Drina and disarm
11 the Muslim militaries formations in that area and make it possible for
12 the Muslim population either to move out of that area to other areas or
13 to accept the political authority of the Republika Srpska.
14 I remember that the forward command post to command that
15 operation was first at an elevation near the village of Trnovo
16 need to mark it with some letters?
17 Q. Yes. If you would put IKM1 there, please.
18 A. And as our forces advanced in the spirit of the task that they
19 were assigned, we moved the forward command post to a hill here in the
20 sector of the Lubardici, village, the village of Lubardici
21 Q. You're thinking ahead of me. Now, the arrows that you've drawn
22 on the map indicate which forces, Mr. Jevdjevic?
23 A. In that operation, there were two or three combat groups or
24 battle groups that took part on the left bank of the River Drina, and
25 there were the units from the Guards Brigade and from the Hercegovina
1 Corps that took part in the operations in this area on the right bank of
2 the Drina River
3 inflict a defeat on the Muslim formations deployed in this pocket from
4 Ustipraca and to Medjedja and Brodari, where River Lim joins the Drina
5 Q. And were any of those forces you've indicated under the command
6 of then-Major Pandurevic?
7 A. Major Pandurevic commanded one of those formations, and I recall
8 quite well that that formation included a battle group from his unit and
9 some other battle groups from other units and his axis of attack in the
10 spirit of the first arrow that I marked here, and that's this one here.
11 Q. If you can make the letters small enough. I wonder if you could
12 put a small VP by the side of that.
13 A. [Marks]
14 Q. You've marked forward command post 1 and forward command post 2.
15 Were there only two forward command posts during the course of this
17 A. In the course of this Operation Mac 1, I remember that we set up
18 communications at the two forward command posts at the beginning of the
19 operation in the village of Trnovo
20 operation here in the Lubardici sector. Later on, we moved in accordance
21 with the tasks that we carried out to other sectors, Bogdanvici, Jandici
22 and so on. And later on when the combat operations moved to the right
23 bank of the Drina River
24 command post was in the Gradina sector near Cajnice.
25 Q. Very well. I'm really only concerned in this series of questions
1 with the operation towards Ustipraca. How did the combat situation
2 develop in that operation?
3 A. I remember from that period that the combat operations were done
4 successively but that the decisive success was achieved by this formation
5 under the command of Major Pandurevic, and after a while he and his unit
6 and heavy artillery support pieces managed to get as far as the Drina
7 River canyon overlooking Ustipraca. It's this place here.
8 Q. And what was the strategic significance of taking that position?
9 A. When those groups from our forces reached those features, for all
10 intents and purposes, all the units, all the enemy units remaining in the
11 River Drina
12 unfavourable position because this was the only route, the only valve, as
13 we call it, that made it possible for them to pull out in the direction
14 of Gorazde if the situation got unfavourable for them, and this was the
15 military importance of it, reaching a strategic elevation that made it
16 possible to control militarily the whole situation, because the artillery
17 covered Ustipraca and the bridge at Ustipraca.
18 Q. And what did that mean?
19 A. That meant that it was possible to fire on all military targets
20 and all the other targets moving down that intersection and down the
21 bridge towards Gorazde, and you could do that with direct fire, with
22 line-of-sight fire.
23 Q. I wonder before I move on to the next few questions whether
24 perhaps in blue or another colour you could indicate, as it were, where
25 the enemy forces were situated.
1 A. To the best of my recollection, I can only indicate with some
2 accuracy the positions that the enemy forces held in this area in front
3 of the forward command post. They held the high ground at Brcigovo,
4 Sljedovici, Pokrivenik, and then further on to Dzankici and the
5 intersection at Brodari.
6 Q. Perhaps it's my fault. I was inviting you to indicate where the
7 forces of the enemy were located after the decisive action by Major
9 A. After this action was carried out, the enemy forces were pushed
10 into the Drina River
12 Q. Thank you. Now, at your communications centre, did you also have
13 radio reconnaissance facilities?
14 A. At the communications centre at the forward command post, we had
15 communications equipment that were used to exercise command in the course
16 of this operation, and we had other equipment working at UKT range.
17 Smaller battle groups among our forces had the same kind of equipment, so
18 we used this radio equipment in order to have some control over the
19 combat operations conducted at the front line itself to be able to hear
20 what the smallest combat units deployed on their positions were doing,
21 but we did not use this equipment to exercise command over those
22 operations because we had equipment that made it possible to keep the
23 data better protected.
24 Q. Well, I'll -- I'll go a different route. Did you become aware of
25 any radio conversation between VRS forces and enemy forces during the
1 course of this operation?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And who specifically were the correspondents in that
5 A. At one point in the course of the operation, I heard over this
6 radio that I told you about, I told you what the purpose was, I heard
7 that the radio command network for the units commanded by Pandurevic was
8 suddenly disrupted by a voice from the other side, and I heard Major
9 Pandurevic engage this person in a military conversation. So to make
10 myself clear, the forward command post of the corps under the command of
11 Milosevic had equipment to exercise command over Pandurevic and other
12 commanders, and Vinko Pandurevic in turn had different kind of equipment
13 to exercise command over his subordinate units, and all of a sudden in
14 this network an enemy soldier joined in. He obviously had been using
15 that same frequency already, and he asked to be put in contact with
16 Major Pandurevic.
17 Q. Do you remember his name?
18 A. At that time, it was a weird situation. That was the first time
19 that something like that happened during the war, for two commanders from
20 the opposing sides to engage in negotiations. And then I learned that
21 this was Ahmet Sejdic, the commander of the Visegrad Brigade of the BH
22 army which held that part of the front line, and he asked to talk to
23 Major Pandurevic, and I personally listened in on that conversation.
24 Q. Did you get the impression from what you heard that this was the
25 first time they'd spoken to one another?
1 A. Since this was the first time that I heard this, I had an
2 impression that they knew each other from before and that they had
3 similar conversations over the radio before in the course of some
4 previous combat operations in light of substantial familiarity that Ahmet
5 Sejdic used when he addressed him.
6 Q. What did Ahmet Sejdic want?
7 A. I remember that Ahmet Sejdic literally asked him - because
8 probably as he listened in, he learned that he was at the position that
9 had fire control of the Ustipraca intersection and that held his unit,
10 his troops, in their hands, so to speak - he asked Pandurevic to allow,
11 to make it possible for an evacuation of the civilian population from
12 this pocket to be carried out, the civilian population from Ustipraca and
14 Q. It may be that your answer's a little ambiguous. Who held whose
15 units in their hands at that time?
16 A. Units under the command of Vinko Pandurevic that reached the
17 geographical point held the units of Ahmet Sejdic in their hands, to use
18 non-military jargon. Ahmed Sejdic's units were in a very unfavourable
20 Q. And what was Pandurevic's response to this suggestion?
21 A. I heard Pandurevic say without much thought that he would agree
22 with Ahmet Sejdic, saying that if Ahmet Sejdic thought it was a good
23 thing to do that he would make sure that the civilian population from
24 that area would withdraw to Gorazde and that Vinko Pandurevic and his
25 units would make sure that not a single bullet would be fired from
1 Vinko's positions during that evacuation. And then in the end, Vinko
2 asked him, "How will I know that the entire column moved? Where would be
3 the rear of the column? How will I be able to tell that all those who
4 want to do so have withdrawn from that sector?" And I remember that
5 Ahmet Sejdic told him, "I will be at the rear of the column driving a
6 blue Mercedes." And this was really a striking thing, the thing that he
7 mentioned, the blue Mercedes, in light of the fact that there was fierce
8 fighting going on.
9 So this was the conversation that I heard with my own ears, and
10 this is what is actually done. And I know that Colonel Milosevic, the
11 commander of the forward command post, did not interfere with this
12 initiative of Major Pandurevic, but he automatically approved it. He
13 didn't even get in contact with him.
14 Q. Just so that we're clear, was there one conversation between
15 Pandurevic and Sejdic or more than one?
16 A. I heard that conversation at that time, but talking over the
17 radio that's not something that you just finish off by putting the
18 receiver down, breaking off the connection. A radio communication can go
19 on forever. It depends only on the wish of the participants to get on
20 the line again and to perhaps deal with some details that need to be
22 Q. And you've -- I think you've told us an evacuation did take
23 place. How long after the conversation did the evacuation take place?
24 A. Well, I assume -- or, rather, I know that at that part of the
25 front line there was a cease-fire and that the evacuation of the civilian
1 population probably started. The information that we at the forward
2 command post had was to the effect that those civilians moving in the
3 column with vehicles, cars, other types of vehicles, also included a
4 large number of members of the Muslim army because we did not encounter
5 any substantial resistance in that area afterwards.
6 Q. Did you see the evacuation yourself?
7 A. I was not in a position to see the evacuation.
8 Q. Did you receive any information through the communications centre
9 as to how many people left the area?
10 A. Well, I did not get the exact information as to how many people
11 had left the area, but in that whole area there are just a few mountain
12 villages and two large villages on the River Drina itself, Medjedja and
13 Ustipraca, and I don't think that there were many people living there in
14 that time.
15 Q. Could you just complete your diagram for us then and show us in
16 which direction the column evacuated from the area, in blue, please.
17 A. This column was moving from the direction of Brodari down that
18 road along the Drina River
20 Q. And do you know how long it took?
21 A. I don't know exactly. I know only that on that day, combat
22 operations were suspended to allow the column to pass.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: I take it -- I assume that this direction or this
24 route that you have indicated is all the way along an existing road and
25 not through woods or forests or whatever. Is that correct?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I am quite familiar with the
2 terrain there. As soon as the column passed through Ustipraca, it was
3 probably moving in the area of the road, and that's where I drew it.
4 That is the vicinity of the road. The last -- over the last 20 or 15
5 years, the road was on the left bank of the Drina River
6 hydroelectric plant. This map is an older one, and it shows a road on
7 the right bank of the river, but I drew it in the vicinity of the road.
8 This is where the road leading to Gorazde is.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you. And that's where they
10 wanted to go, to Gorazde?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes. Sejdic told Vinko that
12 this was the decision, the decision to go to Gorazde, and he asked him
13 simply not to open fire from the dominant heights that he had taken and
14 to allow them to travel down that road.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you. Should we have the break
16 now, Mr. Haynes?
17 MR. HAYNES: I could just finish this topic with about three
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, of course, of course. Yes, but I don't know
20 that he is finished with this document. If he has, then we'll ask him to
21 sign now.
22 MR. HAYNES: Yes. I don't require any further markings on that.
23 Q. Would you please put on the document, Mr. Jevdjevic, your
24 initials and today's date, which is the 11th of December of 2008.
25 A. [Marks]
1 MR. HAYNES: Can that be preserved, please? Yes, done.
2 Q. Just a couple more things. When the forces of the army of
3 Republika Srpska entered what I will call the pocket, did they find any
4 remaining Muslim army units there?
5 A. I remember that later on, the combat operations were directed
6 elsewhere in the direction of Medjedja and Dzankici but that in this
7 operation this pocket from Ustipraca to Brodari was dealt with.
8 Q. Perhaps the question wasn't clear enough. Did it appear that all
9 army units that had been there, all Muslim army units, had, as it were,
10 walked out with the column or driven out?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Well, perhaps it is time for the break.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: All right, Mr. Haynes.
14 Twenty minutes, please. Thank you.
15 --- Recess taken at 5.42 p.m.
16 --- On resuming at 6.05 p.m.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Haynes.
18 MR. HAYNES: Thank you.
19 Q. I just want to ask you three or four more questions about
20 Ustipraca in 1993, and then we'll move on.
21 At the time of the movement of the column, were you aware of any
22 instruction to attempt to disarm any members of that column before it was
23 allowed through to Gorazde?
24 A. No. That column was allowed through to Gorazde without any fire
25 being opened on it at the cost of having armed Muslim soldiers pull out
1 under cover of that convoy, but the command didn't want to risk opening
2 fire even though they assumed there were soldiers among the civilians.
3 Q. Thank you. And secondly, before reaching an agreement with Ahmet
4 Sejdic, did Vinko Pandurevic seek any approval from his superior command?
5 A. No. It was a decision he made on his own initiative.
6 Q. Did his actions surprise you, Mr. Jevdjevic?
7 A. Yes. It was the first time in the course of the war that I heard
8 two commanders of opposing sides negotiating on very important issues,
9 because at that time everyone was very exclusive, and I was surprised
10 that Major Pandurevic, without consulting his superior command, made the
11 decision to allow the column through, and he allowed them to pass before
12 the barrels of his guns.
13 Q. Thank you. Well, we'll leave that topic there. I just want to
14 briefly move forward to the Krajina in the autumn of 1994 where you've
15 told us that Vinko Pandurevic was a commander of a Tactical Unit and you
16 were his deputy. Do you recall that?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And that was operations in the area of Novi Grad. During the
19 course of those operations, did your unit suffer any particular
20 logistical problems?
21 A. I remember that in the initial stage of carrying out those combat
22 activities, we crossed the road leading from Novi Grad toward Buzim in a
23 canyon and that with a swift action we pushed back the enemy forces from
24 their trenches and practically adhered to them on the hill on the other
25 side of the canyon. The forward command post where Pandurevic was
1 remained on the first side of the canyon, as did all our logistics, so
2 that it was very difficult for us to supply the units adhering to the
3 enemy on the opposite side of the canyon. It was hard to supply them
4 with ammunition, food, and water.
5 Q. And were the difficulties with ammunition in relation to the unit
6 you commanded?
7 A. Yes. I was on that other side of the canyon with the units that
8 had got stuck to the enemy side at a distance of some 100 to 200 metres.
9 We held those positions, and the unit I was with in front was
10 experiencing problems in supplies of ammunition, because every day we
11 suffered fierce counter-attacks from the enemy side, which was attempting
12 to push us out of their trenches, which we had taken.
13 Q. What means did Major Pandurevic use to supply you with
15 A. The only way for us to be replenished with ammunition because of
16 the completely impassable terrain was for that ammunition to be carried
17 to us on foot, and the only bearers who could be used on that terrain
18 were people.
19 Q. Can you tell us what people were used?
20 A. In that part of the front line, as it was in the zone of
21 responsibility of the 1st Krajina Corps, the original command assigned to
22 us several men who were fulfilling a work obligation. They were not
23 military conscripts. They had a work obligation, and these men were
24 assigned to carry the supplies of ammunition and other supplies.
25 Q. Who is Miladin Pandurevic?
1 A. Miladin Pandurevic was a soldier of mine, a communications man
2 who for the needs of organising communications in that temporary unit,
3 that brigade commanded by Pandurevic had the task of implementing
4 communications. He is a close relative, a cousin, to Colonel Pandurevic,
5 who is now a general.
6 Q. And did he take part in the running of ammunition to your
8 A. I remember very well on one occasion when the group carrying
9 ammunition arrived, since it was something that was badly needed, seeing
10 Miladin Pandurevic in the group. He's older than me, and when I saw the
11 commander, Milenko Jovanovic, the commander of the Zvornik Brigade Staff
12 Command, he was the commander of the headquarters of that brigade
13 commanded by Vinko Pandurevic.
14 Q. Just to clear that up, what role was Milenko Jovanovic playing in
15 all this?
16 A. He was the commander of the headquarters administration in the
17 Zvornik Brigade, and when the brigade was formed for activities in the
18 area of the 1st Krajina Corps, he was the commander of the headquarters
19 administration of that brigade.
20 Q. But in relation to the running of ammunitions. Was he doing
21 anything in relation to that?
22 A. Yes. His general duty was to look after supplies for the
23 headquarters or the command of the brigade where Pandurevic and I were,
24 but Pandurevic engaged him, Milenko Jovanovic and Miladin Pandurevic who
25 were supposed to carry the ammunition together with the people who had a
1 work obligation and who were assigned to us.
2 Q. And the people who had the work obligation, were they Serbs,
3 Croats or Muslims?
4 A. When they arrived on the other side, this whole group, when they
5 came to where I was, I learned that they had a work obligation, that they
6 resided near Novi Grad, and that they were all Muslims, and I found it
7 very unusual in that combat situation that General Pandurevic, as we
8 needed more ammunition and didn't have enough men, in fact sent his
9 brother and his headquarters administration commander or commander of the
10 staff command together with those men, for all of them to bring that
11 ammunition to us.
12 Q. Thank you. Now, I want to move forward now to Krivaja 95, and
13 I'm going to try as best I can not to ask you the same questions that
14 Mr. Petrusic has asked you.
15 How long before you established the communications centre at
16 Pribicevac did you first know about Operation Krivaja 95?
17 A. It was most probably the chief of communications of the Drina
18 Corps who informed me of that task a day or two before I left, that is,
19 on the 3rd or 4th of July, and he handed me the documents concerning
20 communications for the implementation of that operation. I assume it
21 might have been the 4th of July, the day before I left for the forward
22 command post.
23 Q. Is that a usual period of time to be given to prepare a
24 communications centre for a combat operation?
25 A. In wartime, we were all used to acting ad hoc. When a task was
1 assigned, we would accept it. There was no precise time limit. But as
2 far as I was concerned, it was quite sufficient time.
3 Q. Thank you. And I want to return previously to a document you've
4 looked at before, and that is P3753. I apologise that on my list of
5 documents I've used P3893, which is precisely similar, but P3753 is the
6 better version of that document.
7 Just a few little details about this that I don't think you've
8 been asked. Did you write that document, or did somebody else do that?
9 A. This document was drawn up by the chief of communications of the
11 Q. And I think I can probably lead you on this. His name's Nedo
12 Blagojevic; is that right?
13 A. Yes, yes. Yes.
14 Q. And just to clear up a couple of things about the document
15 itself. If we go across to column number 4 and column number 5, we see
16 there 22 numbers with frequencies written after them -- written after
17 them. That's correct, isn't it?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And the main frequency, is that number 1?
20 A. Yes. That was the frequency we started combat operations with.
21 Q. You say started. You were in the communications centre
22 throughout the period from the 5th of July until the 11th. Were you ever
23 aware that any of the other 21 reserved frequencies was used at all?
24 A. No. As we had secure equipment and that frequency behaved very
25 well in maintaining communications by day and by night, there was no need
1 to change it. So we used it all the way up to the end of the Operation
2 Krivaja, and I assume it was even used in the Stupcanica 95 operation,
3 also, because we were absolutely sure that the lines were secure, the
4 ones that these two operations were carried out with.
5 Q. I want to go back to column number 1, and if we go - one, two,
6 three, four, five, six, seven, eight - nine rows down, we'll see -- we
7 see there's a provision there for MUP with the code-name Oblak. Do you
8 see that?
9 A. Yes, I see that.
10 Q. During the whole period from the 5th to the 11th of July, was
11 there ever a MUP unit who was using the network for Krivaja 95?
12 A. No.
13 Q. We know that at some stage a Special Police unit was present
14 in -- in the area of Srebrenica and its environ. Was there a discussion
15 about whether they should be joined to any network that was operated by
17 A. To make everything clear, when I received this communications
18 plan, which was probably on the 4th of July, as I said, I looked at who
19 all the participants were who were due to take part in the operation. As
20 it was very important for me that if one of those units did not have
21 secure equipment, I should provide them from my reserves in the
22 Communications Battalion. Sometimes, such situations did occur. And
23 then I noticed that MUP was a participant, so I asked either Nedo
24 Blagojevic or General Krstic, because I know that MUP units did not have
25 this equipment which provided a secure line that the army had, so I asked
1 what sort of unit this was and whether I should provide them with
3 What I recall from that period of time is that MUP, which was
4 included in the plan, would not participate in the offensive action
5 against Srebrenica, in the assault, and what I remember is that this
6 probably referred to the members of the local police stations who were
7 subordinate to the Zvornik public security centre.
8 I apologise for such a lengthy reply.
9 Q. No. Was it your understanding that, as it were, MUP units
10 generally had access to the sort of secure communications devices that
11 you were using within this network?
12 A. In the course of Operation Krivaja 95, the MUP units did not
13 appear in the radio network. So I assume that they did not have the
14 equipment of this kind because only the army had this equipment.
15 Q. Thank you. Just before we leave this document, one other, as it
16 were, unit I want to ask you about. Are you familiar with the
17 10th Sabotage Detachment Unit?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. It's obvious from the document that they don't appear to be a
20 unit that you were advised would be part of your network in this
21 operation; is that right?
22 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, leading.
23 MR. HAYNES: Is there any serious contest to that question? I
24 mean, read the document.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: I stand by my objection. I can explain it if we
1 want to, but ...
2 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't know if the witness understands English or
4 MR. HAYNES: It's probably easier if I move on.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Then move on.
6 MR. HAYNES:
7 Q. Had you been informed that that unit would take part in Operation
8 Krivaja 95 prior to the commencement of combat?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Did you become aware of their presence in the area around
11 Srebrenica at some time?
12 A. Yes. They appeared in the combat zone. I think it was on the
13 10th of July, 1995.
14 Q. Can you remember whether that was before, after, or at about the
15 same time that you first saw General Mladic?
16 A. General Mladic also came to the forward command post on the 10th
17 of July, and this unit showed up at that part of the front line near
18 Pribicevac on the 10th of July, but I don't know the specifics. I assume
19 that they arrived a bit later than General Mladic because he arrived at
20 around 0900 hours, so that I'm almost certain that they came to that
21 sector after him.
22 Q. Did they have a signalsman in their unit?
23 A. As soon as I learned that this unit appeared in the combat zone,
24 I knew that they did not have the equipment with the scrambler devise
25 that we had in the course of this operation, and I simply asked
1 General Krstic in an effort to find a solution, asking him when I would
2 be asked to provide them with such equipment and what activities they
3 would be involved in in order to be able to exercise command over them.
4 And this is where I actually met their signalsman and we discussed this
5 problem, because signalsmen are those who have to deal with the problem
6 of establishing communications.
7 He told me that they had those small ultra shortwave equipment,
8 Motorolas, as they were called, and that these were quite sufficient for
9 them and that he did not intend to carry this large piece of equipment
10 around with him.
11 Q. Do you remember what his name was?
12 A. His last name was Bobar.
13 Q. And did you learn from him any of the details of his assignment?
14 A. He told me that they had some special assignment. I didn't pay
15 much attention to it because General Mladic was there and so was
16 General Krstic. I think that they had maybe 20 or 30 men there. It was
17 a small unit, and its name speaks to its purpose. It was a specialised
18 unit, specialised to carry out certain tasks, specific tasks.
19 Q. Thank you. Now, in terms of the communications centre at
20 Pribicevac, were -- was there, as it were, more than one facility at
21 Pribicevac to deal with the command of the units? That's probably a bad
22 question, but was there an observation post as well as the forward
23 command post itself?
24 A. There was an observation post at Kula, a few hundred metres away
25 from the location of the forward command post itself.
1 Q. And was there visual capability from the forward command post so
2 that you could see, as it were, the combat activities going on?
3 A. Since this equipment was portable, it was enough for us to move
4 some 20 metres and to be able to see the slopes of Zeleni Jadar on the
5 other side and to see all the key features in the combat zone and, for
6 the most part, the road leading from Zeleni Jadar to Srebrenica.
7 Q. Thank you. And in terms of the observation post, what was it you
8 could see from there that you couldn't see from the forward command post
10 A. From the observation post, you could see the town of Srebrenica
11 all of it, I think, and the valley leading from Srebrenica to Potocari.
12 And it was possible to see the entire area much better than you could
13 from the forward command post.
14 Q. Did you yourself ever go to the observation post?
15 A. In the course of Operation Krivaja 95, I did not go to the
16 observation post where General Mladic was, but before this operation was
17 launched I went to the observation post several times, and you have the
18 whole area in sight from there. I didn't really need to go there because
19 I was able to follow the combat operations from the small observation
20 post located at the forward command post.
21 Q. But these are really foundational questions. Did you talk to
22 people who'd been up to the observation post?
23 A. No.
24 Q. Okay. Now, we've got seven or eight minutes, and I'm going to
25 try and achieve something in that time. I want you to help us with how
1 the communications worked during Operation Krivaja 95. Firstly, I want
2 to deal with communications from the IKM to the units on the ground,
3 which is the document we've just been looking at, as I understand it.
4 What was the system that was used to communicate with the units
5 on the ground from the forward command post?
6 A. Was that a question? Am I supposed to answer it?
7 Q. Yes. What was the system which you used to communicate, for
8 example, with Vinko Pandurevic?
9 A. With all the units that participated in Operation Krivaja 95 and
10 that are contained in this communications plan that we see on the screen,
11 we had the RUP-2/2K equipment that had a scrambler devise. That was
12 called KZU 63. That is the encryption protection device 63. That's what
13 it meant.
14 Q. And as far as you are aware, were communications on that network
15 capable of interception?
16 A. All the knowledge that I have both from that period and the
17 knowledge that I obtained since, in all combat operations, not only
18 Krivaja and Stupcanica 95 but in all other operations, the conversations
19 that were protected using this device were never intercepted. It was not
20 possible to carry out audio surveillance of those conversations.
21 Q. Thank you. Just one more question about that network. Was that
22 an open network so that whenever anybody spoke on it, everybody else who
23 was on the network could hear?
24 A. Yes. It was an open network where all the participants --
25 whenever a participant is talking, all the other participants hear him.
1 When he presses the button of the micro-telephonic communication, all the
2 participants in the network can hear him, and when he releases the
3 button, then his transmitter is switched off, and then other participants
4 can talk. So it was an open network. We had aerials with radial
5 electromagnetic wave transmission in all directions. In other words, it
6 was very flexible and reliable, and it made it possible to exercise
7 command in those operations, and it was fully protected.
8 Q. Thank you. Can we now move on to the communications between the
9 forward command post and corps command and the Main Staff. By what
10 equipment was that set up?
11 A. At the forward command post, in addition to this -- the
12 communications that were used with the subordinate units, I had to
13 establish communications with the superior command, the Drina Corps
14 Command at Vlasenica. The communications were established using a radio
15 relay device RRU1 in a radio relay section up to the Veliki Zep node, and
16 from there the communications joined in the standard system of radio
17 relay communications leading to Vlasenica. Using encrypted teleprinters,
18 we could receive and transmit written documents that were protected,
20 Q. And how would you establish voice communication with, for
21 example, the corps command at Vlasenica?
22 A. At the forward command post in Pribicevac, using the radio relay
23 device 1, RRU1 that I spoke about, we were able to get a three-digit
24 number which was, in effect, an extension of the telephone exchange that
25 was located at the Main Staff, and this same number but with different
1 digits was at the Drina Corps command at their exchange. The exchanges
2 are used to transmit calls further on or to put two participants in radio
3 communication in contact.
4 If I wanted to call the Drina Corps command in Vlasenica from the
5 Pribicevac forward command post, all I needed to do was to dial 332, and
6 then I would get the operator at the exchange, at the switchboard in the
7 corps command, and then I was able through him to talk to all the other
8 participants in the Drina Corps area and all the other participants and
9 users of telephone communications in Bosnia and Herzegovina
11 Q. And was -- was that a protected line, or was that an open line?
12 A. It was an open line if we're talking about voice communications,
13 whereas written documents were protected using encryption devices.
14 Q. Thank you for today, Mr. Jevdjevic, and it's just been pointed
15 out to me it's your birthday. Happy birthday.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: So we'll continue tomorrow morning at 9.00.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Can I have an indication from you, Mr. Haynes, how
19 much longer do you think you will --
20 MR. HAYNES: I think maybe an hour.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. And you, Mr. Zivanovic?
22 MR. ZIVANOVIC: About half an hour, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. And you, Mr. McCloskey?
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: I better stick with my original, but I hope -- I
25 hope it's much shorter. My original was five, I'm told.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: I just want the witness, first of all, to -- and
2 Mr. Bourgon, yes? Two hours?
3 MR. BOURGON: One hour, Mr. President. Thank you.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. All right. So more or less, that's it.
5 You're going to be with us tomorrow and definitely a good part of next
7 We stand -- yes, Mr. --
8 MR. OSTOJIC: Mr. President, I think we actually put down that we
9 have approximately 30 to 45 minutes, but -
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay, but I was concentrating on the main ones.
11 MR. OSTOJIC: Okay. Thank you. Fair enough.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: So we're talking about a few days next week as
14 We stand adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9.00. Thank you.
15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.48 p.m.
16 to be reconvened on Friday, the 12th day
17 of December, 2008, at 9.00 a.m.