1 Tuesday, 21 April 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The accused Prlic and Coric not present]
5 [The witness takes the stand]
6 --- Upon commencing at 2.16 p.m.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, could you please
8 call the case.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon,
10 everyone in and around the courtroom.
11 This is case number IT-04-74-T, the Prosecutor versus Prlic
12 et al.
13 Thank you, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 I would like to greet the accused. I'd like to greet their
16 counsels, the representatives of the Office of the Prosecution, as well
17 as all those assisting us in the courtroom.
18 I'd like to give the floor to the Registrar for an IC number.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Thank you, Your Honour.
20 The Prosecution has submitted its objections to documents
21 tendered by 2D via Witness Davor Korac. This list shall be given
22 Exhibit IC988.
23 Thank you, Your Honours.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Registrar.
25 Witness, I'd like to welcome you as well, and I'm going to give
1 the floor to Ms. Nozica without further adieu, who will finish her
3 WITNESS: IVAN BAGARIC [Resumed]
4 MS. NOZICA: Thank you, Your Honours. Good afternoon to
5 everybody in the courtroom.
6 Examination by Ms. Nozica: [Continued]
7 Q. Good afternoon, Witness.
8 A. Good afternoon.
9 Q. I am now going to ask you -- I have about 50 minutes left, which
10 is not good either for you or for me. However, I'm going to ask you to
11 provide as short answers as possible with regard to the documents and the
12 questions that I'm going to ask you, because we will be talking about the
13 things which the Trial Chamber is familiar with.
14 Could you look at 2D324 in your second binder, this is where we
15 left it off yesterday. 324. Just for the transcript, 2D324 is the
16 number, 2D324.
17 Did you find it? Mr. Bagaric, this is a report by Dr. Ljubic
18 about the evacuation of BiH members. This took place in Medjugorje on
19 the 12th of June, 1993, and they were evacuated for further treatment.
20 Were you made aware of that, and were such evacuations frequent?
21 A. Yes, this is one of them. I can't tell you how many there were,
22 but it was a common occurrence, yes.
23 Q. I would now kindly ask you to look at the following document,
24 which is P2703, which should be the following document in your binder.
25 At least that's what I think. This is another report by the European
1 Monitors, dated 11 June 1993
2 Under item 5 of this report, you can see that the team visited
3 the west bank and they conveyed a letter of the Corps Command about the
4 request for medicines that we discussed yesterday; is that correct?
5 A. Yes, it is.
6 Q. And now can you please look at the following document, again
7 issued by the European Monitors. P2731 is the document number.
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. This is a report dated 12 June in which it says that the
10 medicines under item 5, and it is on page 1 in both English and Croatian,
11 that the drugs and medicines from the HVO hospital have been dispatched
12 to the hospital on the east bank?
13 A. Unfortunately, a UN member got killed while transporting the
14 medicines over there, unfortunately.
15 Q. Can you now look at 2D276.
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Mr. Bagaric, this is a letter dated 14 July. This is your letter
18 in which you say that on the 13th of July in Domanovic, en route to
19 Capljina, while transporting the wounded, the driver of the ambulance was
20 killed from an ambush at close range, and Nurse Vesna Mijatovic was
21 seriously wounded. You are the one who signed this, together with
22 Dr. Sarac. What is this, Dr. Bagaric? Is this a protest letter?
23 There's no addressee. Who was it sent to?
24 A. This is a case which unfortunately happened, and there were
25 several such cases. My colleague, Nurse Lilija Zerno [phoen], was also
1 killed from an ambush while she was assisting the wounded. She was also
2 killed from an ambush set up by the Bosniak Muslim Army, and she was a
3 nurse. We had a total of 37 killed medical personnel of the HVO, and
4 this is actually an address to the general public, as the first figure in
5 the healthcare, together with my colleague, Ivan Sarac, who was in charge
6 of the civilian healthcare that I mentioned yesterday. We're both
7 appealing to everybody to prevent such things from happening. This is an
8 appeal to the general public. We are appealing to everybody in
9 Herceg-Bosna to abide by the Geneva Conventions on behalf of the HVO
10 Medical Staff.
11 Q. Mr. Bagaric, in Domanovic, on the 13th of July, 1993 -- maybe we
12 have to clarify this. Who could it have been who could have opened fire,
13 which army?
14 A. I believe I already said that it was the Muslims, the BiH Army.
15 They set up an ambush and they opened fire and, unfortunately, killed the
16 person in question, the person referred to herein.
17 Q. Could you please look at 2D4255 [as interpreted].
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. This is a request which has already been admitted into evidence.
20 Again, we are following a temporal sequence. This is a request in which
21 you requested from UNPROFOR, from the Spanish Battalion, that is, to
22 mediate with the Muslim side regarding the accommodation of civilians and
23 women in the war hospital in Mostar and in other hospitals, and you say
24 at the end that you are doing this for humanitarian reasons and that you
25 are asking for this not to be given any political background. Is this
1 one of your requests, and did you receive any reply to this request of
3 A. Yes, this is one of my requests. This is a very serious -- a
4 very important request, and in a certain way I already spoke about this
5 yesterday. I sent it to the international community, to the
6 representatives thereof, in agreement with Commander Petkovic and Defence
7 Minister Mr. Stojic. Why did I do this, why was it me who did it?
8 Because I was the first person in the healthcare of the HVO, and I
9 believe that if a doctor appealed to everybody to treat people in town
10 together, if I was the one who wanted to make the hospital an executorial
11 [as interpreted] building, as it were, and that the representatives of
12 the International Red Cross should enter it and control its work, then I
13 believe that nobody would ever be able to refuse such a request,
14 especially if we were talking about the east side of Mostar, which was in
15 a more difficult situation than us when it came to the healthcare of the
16 wounded. However, unfortunately again we did not receive a reply to this
17 letter, again.
18 Q. I would now kindly ask to be able to correct the number before
19 Judge Trechsel's intervention. This was document number 2D455. The
20 number is reflected erroneously in the transcript.
21 Very well, then. And now I would kindly ask you to look at
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. This is a confirmation or a receipt for a certain quantity of
25 blood that was provided to the UNHCR?
1 A. Yes. I mentioned that yesterday. This is one of our -- how
2 shall I put it -- one of our very important attempts to open the lines of
3 communications in order to help the other side.
4 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I've just been warned that P2703 is
5 under seal. We just saw it on the screen, P2703, and I believe that it
6 is of some importance for this to be stressed out that this is a document
7 under seal and it was published a minute ago. And also 2731, the same
8 thing applies.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please proceed. The Registrar
10 told me that the document had not been disclosed.
11 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Very well, thank you.
12 Q. I'm now going to ask you to look at 2D333. Mr. Bagaric, in this
13 courtroom we have already heard Ms. Sally Backer. Could you please
14 confirm whether you handed over to Ms. Sally Backer, as it says in this
15 document, a vehicle for the transport of the wounded from the left bank
16 of the Neretva to the war hospital, Mostar? Was that one of your
17 missions or activities aimed at helping the wounded in the hospital on
18 the left bank?
19 A. Yes. Ms. Sally Backer requested our support to go to the other
20 side, and there was a possibility for her to be killed. She wanted to
21 take some of our patients, a woman and some children. She wanted to go
22 through the front-lines, and she wanted us to provide her with a vehicle.
23 We did so, we gave her a vehicle, and I'm convinced that on one occasion
24 she did not succeed. She actually made two or three attempts. On one
25 occasion, she failed because they wouldn't allow her on the east side to
1 implement her attempt. They even seized the vehicle. However, I know
2 for a fact that she made two successful journeys and that she took the
3 children and their mothers and she brought them over to our side, as it
4 were, and then we allowed her to contact the Split Hospital. The Split
5 Hospital took the children and continued their treatment, and then from
6 there they went into a third country somewhere in Europe. I don't know
8 Q. Mr. Bagaric, skip the following document. I have to reduce the
9 number of documents that I want to show you. The next one is an exhibit.
10 Can you now please look at 2D23 [as interpreted], which is also under
11 seal, I emphasise.
12 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel please repeat the number.
13 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Mr. Bagaric, item 5 on page 2 in the English version, it is
15 item --
16 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Ms. Nozica, the interpreters have asked that the
17 number please be repeated.
18 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Very well, thank you. Thank you
19 very much. P2923, P2923.
20 Q. Have you found the document, Ms. Bagaric?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Now we have the correct number in the transcript. Let's just
23 confirm. We saw your letters, and here we see a report submitted by the
24 European Monitors, and under item 5, in the second paragraph, you are
25 sending a proposal to them about setting up a hospital on the west side
1 which would function as a joint hospital for the treatment of both ones
2 and the others. This is a confirmation that the international
3 organisations did indeed receive your proposal?
4 A. Yes, this is a confirmation to that effect. And if I can just
5 briefly comment, it says here -- or, rather, it is confirmed here that
6 this is it. However, there is a claim here. It says that in the
7 exchange of doctors with the hospital on the east side, I personally
8 would not accept everything until we ensured the freedom of movement for
9 the HVO doctors who had to work in the hospitals in Travnik, Konjic, in
10 Zenica and so on and so forth. I don't know what kind of interpretation
11 that was, how they interpreted our letters. However, I spoke about that
12 yesterday and I said that they did not have any volunteers who would be
13 willing to go to the east side, irrespective of their ethnic background,
14 and that was the major problem.
15 Q. The next and the last document in the series speaks about that.
16 It is also under seal. It is P2929. Did you find it?
17 A. Can you repeat the number?
18 Q. P2929. It should be the next document in the series.
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Under item 1, you can see that this is referred to. This is an
21 exhibit. I would like to draw your attention to the exchange of doctors
22 and the reason for that. It says here Bruno Stojic, the chief of the HVO
23 Medical Staff, agreed with "our proposal in principle." It seems that
24 the International Monitors and the European community had a problem with
25 positions and functions?
1 A. Yes, they made a mistake, because at the time Mr. Stojic was the
2 head of the department?
3 Q. Can we go to the following page, item 3:
4 "The reason that M2 Mostar is dealing with this problem, and not
5 the UNHCR or the International Red Cross is dealing with that, is because
6 of the fact that in Mostar only team M2 is visiting daily both sides and
7 many times the hospitals. It seems to be for the last couple of weeks
8 the aforementioned international organisations do not want to deal with
9 this kind of problems."
10 Mr. Bagaric, does this confirm exactly what you were talking
11 about, and that is the position of the international organisations
12 towards the medical problems that you had to deal with?
13 A. Well, I allow for the fact that in a way this is somebody's
14 subjective viewpoint. However, I was under the same impression very
15 often, so what I can say is that I agree with this.
16 Q. Mr. Bagaric, we'll now move on to another area, and we're going
17 to deal --
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I have a follow-up
20 Clearly, the documents we have seen demonstrate the efforts you
21 have made to establish a joint hospital between the two parties in order
22 to treat all the wounded of the war. With several other witnesses and
23 with the support of hundreds of documents, we've looked into the East and
24 West Mostar hospital issue or hospitals issue, and we found out that
25 there were several international organisations working even in the East
1 Mostar Hospital, foreigners, physicians who were there to assist, and one
2 of the organisations is Medecins Sans Frontieres. Now, you -- we know
3 that there were all those people and the International Red Cross as well.
4 Why, knowing this, have you not turned to them so that under the auspices
5 of the Red Cross, this joint hospital would be established, treating
6 everybody, rather than approaching the Spanish Battalion, so to say,
7 requesting it to play a focal role? Because we know there were foreign
8 physicians who were there with organisations, with the assistance of
9 their countries, who could have set up that hospital.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, thank you for that question.
11 When it comes to the International Red Cross, it is an
12 institution without any force and no power in the area; no weapons, no
13 equipment, and no -- no protection for itself, no security for itself.
14 That's why we went to the Spanish Battalion first, because we had
15 relatively good and I can even say excellent cooperation with them,
16 because they enabled us to go up to Konjic on that occasion and all the
17 places there and organise the meeting, and Mr. Morales, I remember him
18 well as having been a very serious person and somebody who was in a
19 position to help us. So I say with full responsibility that with this
20 piece of paper of ours, our request, independently of what it says, that
21 we contacted the UN, that we were known to the International Red Cross as
22 well. However, quite simply, we did not receive a response, no answer,
23 so they weren't able to do anything without UNPROFOR, and UNPROFOR most
24 probably could not put this into practice because it did not receive an
25 affirmative answer. I'm sure that they did try, but once they failed,
1 they left it at that.
2 So this is a rare example, perhaps even in the history of warfare
3 in general, and it was published and this example put forward in a
4 scholarly and journal as an example of how an international organisation,
5 and the other side, too, did not respond to the first attempt made at
6 establishing communication.
7 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Mr. Bagaric, and now finally I'm going to ask you a set of
9 questions having to do with the detention centres and the role of the
10 Health Sector in those centres.
11 Mr. Bagaric, at the collegium of the Defence Department, did they
12 discuss military prisons and detention centres at all?
13 A. As far as I remember and when I was there, when I attended the
14 senior staff meetings or collegiums, they discussed it on one occasion
15 and I remember that occasion very well. I think it was at the beginning
16 of September. However, up until then, our doctors, and when I say "our
17 doctors," I mean the doctors in the brigades in the military districts
18 and also our physicians in the Health Sector who were in charge of
19 preventive medical care, led by Dr. Curic, they went to those centres.
20 And I was one of them, although strictly speaking, that wasn't part of my
22 Q. Mr. Bagaric, why did the Health Sector, as you say, and
23 Mr. Curic, which is the Infectology and Epidemiological Service, why did
24 they visit the prisons and detention centres?
25 A. In order to under this fully, you have to know what the setup
1 was, the system, the units on the ground, the overall situation on the
2 ground, and so on and so forth. So Dr. Curic, who was at the head of
3 this sector of ours, in a way provided professional support, because
4 I think that he was the only infectious disease specialist there and in
5 the territory where the HVO units were located, which means that he
6 visited the units, toured the units, and the doctors in those units, but
7 also he took care to see that they had clean water to drink, a good water
8 supply, and everything else that the prevention of disease involved.
9 Q. To the best of your recollections, Mr. Curic and the service that
10 he headed, did they visit the refugee centres at all?
11 A. Yes, they did, absolutely.
12 Q. And did they visit all the places where large numbers of people
14 A. Yes. I've just confirmed that, that's right.
15 Q. Mr. Bagaric, did you consider that these centres, and you've
16 already told us that Mr. Curic visited them, that you went to one of
17 them, and we'll come to that later on, but did you consider that,
18 organisationally speaking, these centres belonged to the Defence
20 A. No.
21 Q. And you said that you visited one of the detention centres.
22 Could you explain to the Court where you went and when you went?
23 A. I went once to the Heliodrom, and I think it was -- well, I can't
24 give you a precise date, but it might have been in mid-July 1993 or
25 thereabouts. And a member of the Helsinki Board came to visit me, and a
1 professor for public health, Slobodan Lang from Zagreb. When they came
2 to visit me, then the two of us went there together, and I asked him to
3 use his connections and also, based on his experience and knowledge, to
4 help us so that we could help the doctors in turn who were already
5 involved with the specific prison that you've just mentioned. So that
6 was a time of open warfare. There was an open conflict and war going on,
7 and we didn't know what the morrow would bring. So we weren't prepared
8 properly, nor were we able to deal with the situation. And it was an
9 outcome of the war that we did not wish to see, a detention centre or a
10 camp, but had I been involved, I would of course have had more experience
11 than I do now. However, with the help of Dr. Lang and all the people
12 down there who were directly in charge of the centre, and for those of us
13 who came from outside and supported those people there with our knowledge
14 and generally our moral support, we and Mr. Curic, I think, succeeded in
15 what we intended to do.
16 Q. I think you've also already answered the question I want to ask
17 you next, because we have seen reports to that effect, but let me ask you
18 whether you were in the detention centres of Gabela and Dretelj ever.
19 A. No, never.
20 Q. As I was saying, we've already seen some reports here in court,
21 and we see that certain measures were proposed, put forward in those
22 reports and some of the orders that you signed, but tell us now: Whose
23 job was it to put those measures into practice, Mr. Bagaric?
24 A. Now, in the reports that were clearly written, written in detail,
25 setting out the system, and I'd like to thank Mr. Curic for that, first
1 and foremost, it is clear that in the Healthcare Sector it was our health
2 staff that were involved, those who were in the units themselves and who
3 was -- who supervised those centres, and when it came to all other
4 aspects, logistics, of course, for the units and the military districts
5 to which these centres belonged.
6 Q. We'll go through some of these reports in due course, although
7 we've seen quite a lot of them in the courtroom, and we had quite a
8 number of your own orders. Now, is it your impression that --
9 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, Ms. Nozica. I would like to ask one
10 or a few questions.
11 Dr. Bagaric, who authorised you to enter Heliodrom?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As I said, it was the time of open
13 conflict and all-out war, and I was the head of the Medical Service of
14 the Croatian Defence -- of the HVO, and I never actually heard of anybody
15 in official terms establishing the centre. I saw this as part of the
16 facts that I told you about, and I thought that as a doctor, I would go
17 there with Mr. Lang, or Dr. Lang, and we simply got into a car.
18 I know that you must find this a little unusual, but that's how
19 things were. We just got into a car and drove off and went there, and at
20 the entrance, I happened to meet a young man who was standing at the door
21 and said we wouldn't be allowed to enter or I wouldn't be allowed to
22 enter. And I said that I was a physician and that it was my intention to
23 go inside. And then I assumed that somebody recognised me, and they
24 said, Let the doctor go, let the doctor pass. So Lang and I went inside
25 without any formal or official permission to do so. That was what the
1 situation was like. It was a really chaotic time, a chaotic situation.
2 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
3 Were you wearing your uniform or were you in civilian clothes?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During the war, as I was the chief
5 of the Medical Corps of the HVO, I think I was always in uniform, and I
6 had the International Red Cross emblem on my uniform so that people could
7 recognise me as being a doctor, and of course without any weapons.
8 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
9 And the man standing at the entrance at Heliodrom was also
10 wearing a uniform?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
12 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
13 You have spoken of "our people" dealing with the situation there.
14 I'm asking you these questions because you have said a short while ago
15 that the detention centre was not within the province of the Defence
16 Department, of the military, but what you are telling us now rather
17 points to the contrary; namely, that the authority which was above
18 Heliodrom at that time was the military branch of HVO, which would be the
19 Department for Defence. What do you -- what is your reaction to this?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have to say or correct, in a way,
21 what I said earlier on to make things quite clear.
22 I often use the term "our patients," "we," "our doctors," and
23 when I say this, these first-person plural, I am referring to my
24 colleagues, regardless of where they live. But those doctors were not in
25 my Health Sector, nor were they in the Defence Sector. They were out on
1 the ground in units or the brigade or in the military district. So
2 I think that's what I wanted to clear up.
3 JUDGE TRECHSEL: So you seem to stay with the view that the
4 Heliodrom Centre at that moment was not under the authority of the
5 Department of Defence. If that is so, under what authority was it?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I did not say nor do I know at
7 that time under whose authority it was, as such. What I, in fact, said
8 was that as a physician myself, who was in charge of dealing with HVO
9 healthcare at the top level, I felt a need to go there. I never saw an
10 order to that effect or an order establishing the centre in the first
11 place, nor did I ever attend any meetings discussing the formation of
12 this prison or any other, or the Centre for Isolation as they were
13 called, or whatever. I really didn't know anything about that.
14 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I leave it at that for the moment. Thank you.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, the issue of the
16 Heliodrom Centre is a key issue to this case. Heliodrom is the very
17 cornerstone of this case.
18 You told us that you were in charge of the Health Sector in the
19 Defence Department. As a doctor, therefore, with Slobodan Lang, your
20 colleague, you went to the Heliodrom. And you told us - this is what you
21 answered Judge Trechsel - that before you went there, you did not know
22 how that centre was operating. This is something you discover when you
23 go there, if I understood you correctly. I do not want to catch you by
24 surprise. It may be the Prosecutor's role, but I won't do that. I'm
25 neutral, and I'm trying to understand the gist of this case.
1 We've already heard witnesses who described what happened in
2 Heliodrom. This has been described for us. You went to the Heliodrom,
3 and did you realise that it is a centre where there are people who are
4 detained, and hence this raises the question of the responsibility of the
5 Medical Service of the army?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You're talking about July here,
7 we're dealing with July. It's not September, October, November, it's
8 July. And in July, in July, well, Heliodrom couldn't be hidden. You
9 couldn't hide Heliodrom. I knew about Heliodrom, and I knew that it was
10 a military base or barracks and allegedly a prison, a central prison, as
11 such. But after the conflict between the BH Army and the HVO in Mostar,
12 that is to say, when the Muslim Bosniaks turned their weapons in another
13 direction, after that, and I heard this from my colleagues, a large
14 number of people were taken to that centre, so at that point in time I
15 didn't know what its status was. All I knew was one thing, and that is
16 that it would be up to us to go and see what was going on there and what
17 it looked like, but nobody gave me instructions to do that. However,
18 when we arrived there, we found people there who, among other things,
19 were medical technicians, some of them doctors, who were also
20 incarcerated as HVO members. They were there and incarcerated because of
21 those events, and we learnt that our own doctors from the brigade that
22 was there in that compound were supervising, as much as they possibly
23 could, healthcare for the centre. And then later on, we provided
24 support, and I'll tell you how we did that. We provided support to the
25 doctors in the centre and the doctors outside the centre who helped those
1 inside it.
2 So that would be more or less my answer to your question, but you
3 must remember that it was July, the beginning of July, fairly early on,
4 so at that point in time I couldn't have known this or that. It was just
5 a place where I felt I needed to intervene.
6 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Q. Now, Mr. Bagaric, you said that you knew that within the
8 frameworks of the barracks at Heliodrom there was a central prison, a
9 central military prison?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Now, could you explain to Their Honours whether you visited that
12 building of the Central Military Prison when you went with Mr. Lang or
13 some other premises where there were detainees?
14 A. Well, I have to say -- I have to admit that now that you're
15 asking me, I can't really say, I don't know whether we were here or
16 there. But according to the people who were incarcerated there, looking
17 at their ages and the situation that prevailed there in general, I think
18 that -- well, I assume that it was a facility where people were placed
19 who were incarcerated after the disarming of the BH Army, that is to say,
20 those who were considered to be potentially dangerous at that time.
21 Q. Mr. Bagaric, did you go to something that looked like a sports
22 hall, a gymnasium, a gym hall?
23 A. Yes. Not only do I think so, but, yes, I'm convinced that must
24 have been it.
25 Q. All right. Now, from the reports and orders dating to July 1993
1 and ranging to the beginning of 1994, we see -- well, these reports were
2 from Mr. Curic or the Infectology and Epidemiology Service, and you too.
3 Now, my question is this: Would you say that as time went by, did the
4 health situation improve? Because you said that you were in charge of
5 healthcare as well, so did the situation improve, health protection
6 situation improve, after you pointed out the negative aspects?
7 A. After our intervention, let me put it this way, our intervention
8 from outside, and our assistance to the medical personnel inside and the
9 people outside who supervised their work, we absolutely did promote
10 [as interpreted] healthcare and protection in that area on the premises,
11 but you must bear in mind that once again as time went by greater efforts
12 were needed because the longer the people spent time in that place or in
13 one particular place, there was the threat of infectious diseases
14 breaking out, so that Dr. Curic, who later on became a coordinator - he's
15 an infectologist and he came from outside - so he did more and more as
16 time went on to deal with the situation.
17 Q. Now let's look at some documents which relate to that topic.
18 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, Ms. Nozica.
19 Your question has not been answered. You asked whether the
20 situation improved, and you -- Mr. Bagaric, yes, you say, "Yes," now, but
21 generally I think you have mainly said that you continued your efforts
22 and that it was more difficult, and it seems that you successfully
23 prevented epidemics. Can you say in what other way the situation of the
24 inmates was actually improved?
25 I'm sorry, Ms. Tomanovic.
1 MS. TOMANOVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise for intervening. I
2 believe that your question arises from the mistake in transcript. On
3 page 19, line 6, it says here "we absolutely did promote," and what the
4 witness actually said was "we absolutely did improve."
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's what I said. I believe
6 that's what I said.
7 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Lost in translation, as Mr. Karnavas would
8 quote, and that's exactly the word which triggered off my question.
9 Thank you. I think we can let Ms. Nozica go.
10 THE WITNESS: I am guilty because -- because I'm so fast.
11 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Well, then slow down a little. We'll bear with
12 you, and we'll tell you, we'll tell you.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm doing my best.
14 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, one question leading
16 to another.
17 I'm struck by the fact that you are talking about Dr. Curic for
18 questions of epidemics. From a medical point of view, you're perfectly
19 right, but you know that as regards the conditions of the inmates,
20 there's only -- not only the problem of the epidemics, there are other
21 issues; for example, the morale of the inmates, the overall detention
22 conditions, the abuses, where doctors may have an extra role added on to
23 that of taking care of infections or epidemics, and you're not talking
24 about those aspects.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I thought that I would be given
1 time to talk about it at great length, that I would be given time. I
2 understand your question. However, I can see that the counsel wants to
3 speed things along, and that's why I am also rushing through my answers.
4 And if you agree, if you want to hear my answers, I would very much like
5 to provide them if there is time. Maybe I can do it right now.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please rest assured, when
7 Judges ask questions, this doesn't encroach on the time granted to the
8 counsel. So answer my question and this will not be deducted from
9 Ms. Nozica's time.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, you're absolutely
11 right, it was not just the concern about infections, but if you are
12 looking after somebody, you have to carry out the overall role of
13 monitoring and promotion of healthcare or improvement of healthcare, just
14 like you said it.
15 Our colleague, Dr. Curic, was the head of prevention and medical
16 care, and believe me that he was a professional and he did everything as
17 things should have been done, and you can tell by his reports that this
18 was done professionally. What does this mean? At his proposal, we
19 established a point, a medical point within the prison, which means that
20 there was a doctor on duty there who examined people. He wore a white
21 medical coat, and he treated people regularly, those who needed
22 treatment, as this is normally done in any health centre anywhere.
23 In addition to that, we also established a small warehouse with
24 medical supplies and medicines there, so one could intervene very quickly
25 if a need arose. And in those cases which could not be helped at that
1 level, those people were brought to the Mostar Hospital. Mr. -- or the
2 gentleman who was the head of the -- or the chief administrator of the
3 Mostar Hospital was directly in charge of that. I would intervene from
4 time to time should a problem have arisen in the communication. You have
5 to bear in mind that Heliodrom was in the zone where operations -- where
6 war operations were taking place, and it was not always easy to establish
7 communication between the hospital and the Heliodrom, as such.
8 And when you're talking about Mr. Curic, you mentioned his name,
9 I believe -- I didn't understand, then.
10 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I apologise. I believe that the
11 Judge said "Curic." We don't want to introduce any new names.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I was confused by that. I
13 didn't understand.
14 Can I continue, please, may I go on? Yes, okay.
15 JUDGE TRECHSEL: As there is an interruption, on page 21, line
16 19, it says that this medical point is normally done in any health centre
17 anywhere. I wonder whether you actually said and wanted to say "health
18 centre ," because I thought we were more appropriately talking about the
19 prison, a detention centre.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Correct, correct. I would like to
21 see the document. I don't know what document that is, but I know that
22 that was indeed the case.
23 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
24 Please continue.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The first thing that we did was to
1 give importance to the doctors who, themselves, were detainees within the
2 centre and the rest of the medical personnel. That is why I issued an
3 order -- or, rather, it was a request. I don't know what it was,
4 actually. It was a request to establish that centre and to be run by our
5 colleagues, doctors who were detainees in the centre. In a certain way,
6 we kept communication with them, with a constant supervision of their
7 work from the outside, and that was taking place at two levels. The
8 first level were the doctors who were in charge of the healthcare in that
9 military district, and the other level was a higher professional level
10 represented by Dr. Curic and other people who were with him from time to
11 time and went there with him every now and then.
12 Another thing that should be underlined here: As time went by,
13 the situation there changed gradually, and every now and then we had to
14 undertake some new activities, which you can see in the reports.
15 However, one issue that you raised is something that I would like
16 to go back to. You said that the environment, the surroundings in which
17 people live, and the circumstances of their life, have a huge bearing on
18 their health, which is absolutely correct, but we invested a lot of
19 effort, and that effort resulted in the effects -- positive effects, that
20 is, in the centre. Nobody suffered any harm. Everybody was treated
21 medically. Of course, there were circumstances outside of the centre
22 that had a direct impact on the health condition of the people in the
23 centre that had nothing to do with the medical profession. For example,
24 this could be the quality of their diet. It could be the safety of the
25 detainees in the centre. And this is all true, and this compounded the
1 matter even further, and it had an additional impact on the work of the
2 doctors, making their life so much harder.
3 There was an extent to which we could intervene, but there were
4 also things that we could propose, and when I say "we," I mean the
5 doctors directly in charge, but we did not have a bearing upon such
6 things. All those things that we were trying to deal with had a lot of
7 influence on the health of the people there.
8 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I would like to thank the Trial
10 Q. And, Mr. Bagaric, when I reach the documents, I was going to talk
11 about them. This is very important, I would never have skipped that.
12 However, I'm very glad that you did it in the Trial Chamber's time.
13 Could you now please look at two or three very brief documents
14 that have already been presented in the courtroom. The first one is
15 2D915. This should be the following document. It's a report on the
16 sanitary -- supervision of the brigade Petar Kresimir IV. Could you look
17 at the report and could you please confirm that this was indeed of the
18 activities that was preformed by Dr. Curic, i.e., that was preformed by
19 the Department for Infections, Epidemiology, and Toxicology? You said
20 that you toured the brigade. Could you please confirm?
21 A. Yes. This is an example, one example -- a good example.
22 Dr. Curic toured the brigade. He supervised the water supply. He made a
23 note of the health conditions, and he, in doing that, established contact
24 with the doctor who was in charge of the brigade. He also controlled
25 whether the disease infection -- disease -- and all the other measures
1 were carried out appropriately, whether there were health education
2 measures in place, whether there was an active screening for infectious
3 diseases, and so on and so forth.
4 Q. Mr. Bagaric, we have already heard a witness who testified about
5 that. I would just like to ask you whether this could be a confirmation
6 of what you've just been talking about.
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. The next document would be 2D2921 [as interpreted], which
9 consists of two reports. The one is about the sanitary supervision of
10 the Sup Vrdi [phoen] Sector, and after that is the report of the
11 education in war prevention medicine. A doctor from the brigade in the
12 locality Grude is being educated. Would this also fall under --
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. I apologise. The number has not been recorded properly. 2D921.
15 My question has not been recorded properly.
16 Did this fall under --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness and the counsel please not
18 overlap, because they cannot be interpreted. Thank you.
19 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation]
20 Q. We've been warned, Witness, that you should wait for my question
21 to end before you start providing your answer.
22 Could you please look at P4756. This is a meeting of the
23 collegium, and you said that one such meeting dealt with the detention
24 centres. This was on 2nd of September, 1993. On page 3 in the Croatian
25 and on page 4 in the English version of this document, you can see a
1 record of the debate which took place at that meeting. Mr. Stojic said
2 that he believed that the Defence Department had two military prisons,
3 Heliodrom and Ljubuski?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. You will provide a complete answer after my question. A task is
6 given to check what was going on within a certain dead-line and to say
7 who was behind the Dretelj and Gabela prisons and what was going on
8 there. Can you remember whether the Health Department Sector also
9 supervised the conditions in the latter two detention centres before and
10 after this date?
11 A. This is connected with the Presiding Judge's question about my
12 knowledge or lack thereof on the status of the detention centres and
13 prisons. I was really at that meeting of the collegium, and I know that
14 things transpired exactly as they are recorded in here. However, I would
15 like to emphasise that independently of all this, which I did not feel
16 that Dretelj or Gabela were directly or charged, they indeed were not;
17 however, by virtue of the same actions and responsibilities which
18 governed us to supervise all the detention centres where infections could
19 break out, I know that Dr. Curic, together with the doctors from the
20 units that was in charge of the two detention centres, would enter those
21 centres before and also later.
22 Q. Let's now talk about some documents that speak about these two
23 detention centres. Some have already been entered into evidence, so they
24 will not call for your lengthy comments.
25 The first document is P1415. This is your request dated 12th of
1 August that you have already commented upon. Is this indeed the request
2 in which you asked for a medical point to be set up in Heliodrom, as you
3 have explained to the honourable Judge?
4 A. Yes, this is a document that I've already referred to. I was
5 referring to an infantry point. This was our additional effort in order
6 to deal with the problem and try and resolve the problem.
7 Q. Can you please look at the following document, which is 2D --
8 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Ms. Nozica, perhaps we could spare time by
9 giving care to the numbers, because again this is a number which is not
10 the correct one. The correct number is 041545, and you said "1415."
11 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I don't think that any
12 of us are right. The document number is P4145.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. My colleague made a
14 mistake. Everyone makes mistakes with figures; also I do.
15 Witness, in this document there is something particular. I'd
16 like you to explain this to me, because it's quite a feat to talk about a
17 document you signed 15 years ago.
18 The doctors of the 15th Brigade need to send somebody to take
19 over the Heliodrom, and I'll repeat the question.
20 In this document, it is stated that the doctors of the 2nd
21 Brigade will be discharged at the Heliodrom. Why is this stated in that
22 document? The 3rd Brigade and not 2nd Brigade.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] After having inspected the
24 situation over there, and after having received the proposal from the
25 doctor, Mirsad Stranjak, from the detention centre itself, and from
1 Dr. Musa --
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Hold on. There was no French
4 Please carry on.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise. I don't speak French.
6 I can't help you.
7 Dr. Mirsad Stranjak, my colleague, the doctor who was within the
8 detention camp, and Dr. Musa --
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Hold on. There is a problem
10 because I cannot hear the French booth anymore.
11 [No interpretation].
12 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [No interpretation]
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My colleague, Mr. Mirsad Stranjak,
15 who was in the centre itself as a detainee, and Dr. Musa, who was in the
16 3rd Brigade, who until then covered the centre or prison from outside
17 with Dr. Curic, they in fact proposed that maximum autonomy be given to
18 the doctors within the centre, and they said these people were important
19 because they were doctors, because they had detention status, because the
20 people who were with them had greater trust in them, if I can put it that
21 way. They were more -- had more confidence in them. And so this person
22 from the 3rd Brigade couldn't leave and not be interested in what the
23 situation was like anymore there. No, that's not what the case was. But
24 he didn't have to be there regularly, and this was reflected in the
25 reports. He continued to visit from time to time and follow the
2 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you for that explanation.
3 Q. Now let's look at 2D715, the next document, please. And this is
4 an order from you. This is the first time you issue an order or command,
5 and were you in a position to do so, to issue orders and commands? But
6 we'll discuss that in a while. The date is the 18th of August, so let's
7 see who it was addressed to. It says the command of the Knez Domagoj
8 Brigade, to the attention of Colonel Nedeljko Obradovic, to the attention
9 of Nikica Sutalo, and it relates to setting up a medical station, as it
10 says herein, Dretelj Prison; is that right?
11 A. Yes, so this is almost the identical situation here, and the way
12 in which the problem at Heliodrom was solved, they tried to do the same
13 here with Mr. Sutalo and Mr. Curic, and I'm sure he prepared this order.
14 I did not sign it. I can see that somebody signed for me, because it's
15 not my handwriting, but -- yes, I apologise for speaking so fast. I'll
16 try and slow down.
17 Anyway, as I was saying, I didn't sign this myself, but that's
18 how things were. That was the rule. We had the authority to sign for
19 each other, and so of course that was with my knowledge and agreement,
20 and this meant entrance from outside, if I can put it that way, by a
21 higher level of control and supervision going into Dretelj. And there
22 you have it. The same principle applied.
23 Q. Now look at the next document, which is 2D278.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And it is an order signed by Mr. Curic this time, dated the 28th
1 of August, and it followed on from, as it says here in the introduction,
2 an investigation conducted on August the 17th, 18th, and 26th, and it was
3 sent to the chief of the Health Service, Mr. Sutalo, and to Colonel
4 Nedeljko Obradovic, and this is once again linked to an investigation of
5 Gabela and Dretelj; right?
6 A. Yes. Here we can see the process was continuous, that people
7 visited on the 17th, 18th, or maybe 19th, or 26th of August, and then
8 there was a proposal made on the 28th of August.
9 Q. Now let's look at 2D412, please, the next document. For the
10 transcript, I have to repeat the number of the document. It is 2D412.
11 A. Yes, I can see that.
12 Q. This is an order from you, dated the 28th of September, and
13 I think that it is repeated later on, but could you explain to Their
14 Honours, please, what prompted you to issue an order like this?
15 A. During your time or during the Judges' time?
16 Q. Well, in my time, concisely, please.
17 A. This is a very important order, and I'm very proud of this order,
18 and I know that it led to quite a lot of success on the ground and that
19 the situation was significantly improved, following the health of the
20 detainees. We know that the circumstances and the situation was
21 difficult, but quite certainly this order, together with the doctors who
22 were inside and those who were outside, and especially with the help of
23 my colleague Mr. Curic as an expert from outside at a higher level, this
24 contributed to the significant promotion of healthcare in the premises.
25 So this -- this applied to everything; what we knew about, and what we
1 didn't know about. And if there had been a detention centre that we did
2 not know about, it would nevertheless have made it incumbent upon the
3 commanders to do their best to act.
4 Q. I'm now going to ask you to look at P553, the next document. It
5 is a report by the commission and it deals with a visit to the Heliodrom.
6 On the 30th of September, and I think that this is important, to
7 stress the date, linked to what Judge Antonetti asked you with respect to
8 your request, P4145, the other document we saw a moment ago, I think it's
9 important to say here that in addition to the three-member commission of
10 doctors, that on behalf of the centre there was Mr. Stanko Bozic, the
11 head of the centre, and Drs. Pehar [Realtime transcript read in error
12 "Behar"] and Hadzic, and can you explain to Their Honours who Dr. Pehar
13 was and who Dr. Hadzic was at that point in time?
14 A. Dr. Pehar was the head -- well, I can't say whether he was the
15 head of the brigade or the military district. I think he was the head of
16 the brigade. Dr. Hadzic was a physician within the centre, and he was
17 incarcerated. And as for this three-member commission, they are all
18 doctors, specialists. Dr. Kolak was a surgeon. Well, he wasn't a
19 surgeon at that time. He was just finishing his specialisation course.
20 Then there was Dr. Ivo Sandrk, he was a specialist in general medicine.
21 And Ivo Sturic [phoen], whom I've already said was an infectologist.
22 So all three of them were the heads of certain departments within
23 our Health Sector. So this was -- well, Curic as a professional, he
24 supervised the situation himself, but in order to have a more
25 comprehensive and all-embracing approach, these two other doctors were
1 added to the commission.
2 Q. Let me repeat the number of the document. The document we've
3 just been commenting upon is P5503, 5503. I'm saying that for the
4 record, Witness, and I'm now going to ask you to look at two more
5 documents. They are both reports, and let me just draw your attention to
6 the fact that on page 31, line 8, it should read "Dr. Pehar" with a "P"
7 instead of "Behar" with a "B."
8 Could you look at 2D1538 next, please. We saw from your order,
9 especially the order from the 28th of August, where you ask that reports
10 be submitted to you -- the document number is 2D1538.
11 A. Yes, I can see that.
12 Q. I'm saying that for the record. Now, can you tell us whether
13 this is one such report that followed after the inspection took place?
14 A. Yes, that is one of the reports.
15 Q. This is a response to Mr. Nikica Sutalo, linked to the Centre for
16 Preventive Isolation, Gabela, and I'd like to draw your attention to the
17 last sentence. It says there are no difficulties in the centre's
18 operation with regards to the medical aspect; is that right? So you
19 received reports like this from other centres for preventive isolation as
20 well; right?
21 A. Well, my answer is "yes," but I can't remember all the details
22 now because Dr. Curic, in a way and conditionally speaking, was appointed
23 by us. Well, we reached an agreement to appoint him to be in charge of
24 supervision from outside.
25 Q. Now, Dr. Bagaric, look at a report like that dated the 15th of
1 January, 1993. It is 2D1537.
2 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me. I'm still a bit confused about the
3 last document.
4 You have said - this is line 8, page 32 - "This is a response to
5 Mr. Nikica Sutalo," but it seems that it is a document signed by Nikica
6 Sutalo. So if it is a response, it will not be an auto-response of him
7 to himself?
8 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, you're quite right.
9 It's not to Nikica Sutalo, it's from Nikica Sutalo.
10 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Right. And it would be very interesting --
11 maybe you could tell us, Dr. Bagaric, what was the position of
12 Dr. Sutalo?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At the time, I think my colleague
14 Mr. Sutalo was the head of the Medical Corps of the Knez Domagoj Brigade,
15 that's what I think he was, and that's how he signs himself here, head of
16 the Sanitary Service or Medical Corps, SNSL.
17 JUDGE TRECHSEL: And was he also the person responsible for the
18 medical aspects in Gabela?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Absolutely so, yes, he was one of
20 the people.
21 JUDGE TRECHSEL: So this is not a report by someone who is
22 outside and goes to see whether the previous order has been complied
23 with, but it's the person to whom the order was addressed who said, I did
24 everything you asked me for?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's right, yes.
1 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I have a question to ask.
3 Ms. Nozica, you still have seven minutes, and while I'm asking my
4 question, see how you are going to use the seven minutes with the few
5 documents you still have.
6 Witness, I just had a look at the two reports of Dr. Sutalo, and
7 I see -- I notice this, and the first document, Dr. Sutalo reports on the
8 situation of the centre, isolation centre, Preventive Isolation Centre,
9 that's how it's titled, and the second report in November, the title
10 given is "Report on the Situation of the Measures Made at the Prison
11 Gabela." Therefore, in a few weeks, within the span of a few weeks, this
12 isolation centre of preventive medicine becomes a prison.
13 And so I know that Dr. Sutalo is not a lawyer, but could you give
14 an explanation? Do you have any explanation to that?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I'm not a lawyer. But tell
16 me, what was the second document? I see the first one, but what's the
17 second, just for me to compare?
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It was number 2D1538, and the
19 second document is 2D1537.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I see.
21 This is a typical -- the typical kind of report that doctors
22 would write in which Dr. Dr. Sutalo, at least that's how I see it, he
23 puts "Subject: Report on the Situation in the Centre for Preventive
24 Isolation, Gabela," that's what he put as a subject, and this other one,
25 the report on the current situation in Gabela Prison and the measures
1 taken. Now, I don't know whether the status of that centre changed at
2 all, but it wouldn't be unusual had Dr. Sutalo meant the same thing,
3 using both these titles, because I've already said that at that time,
4 even as far as terminology is concerned, we didn't know how to call
5 things by their right name, but what is essential is that people were
6 there. That's the main point.
7 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Might I be of assistance to Judge Trechsel, when he asked who
9 Nikica Sutalo was, I thought that -- let me just remind you of 2D715,
10 that document, and 2D -- 2D715, we've already looked at that document, at
11 2D278, which is -- one is an order from Mr. Bagaric which was directly
12 sent to Mr. Nikica Sutalo, and the second was an order Mr. Curic, which
13 was addressed to Nikica Sutalo, and his position is stated there, head of
14 the Medical Corps. It says that it is the Knez Domagoj Brigade at the
16 A. Well, I've just said that. I apologise for saying that, Counsel,
17 but I said --
18 Q. Dr. Bagaric, just take it easy. No need to get upset. I see
19 that you have a rather feisty temperament, but take things slowly, just
20 one by one.
21 Now let's look at the next document. May I have just a minute or
22 two more time, Your Honours, and I'm sure I'll be over by the break. But
23 let's look at P6203 now, please. P6203 is the number.
24 A. I can see it.
25 Q. This is a document written to -- coming to you from Mr. Siljeg,
1 concerning a letter of yours from the 28th of October, unfortunately an
2 order that we don't have. But, anyway, he says, first of all, that as
3 far as the centres are concerned, or the ones on his territory, that
4 there aren't any, but I'm interested under B where he says: "You do not
5 have the right to command," to issue orders, and that makes your orders
6 null and void.
7 Do you have any comments there, whether Mr. Siljeg, at least in
8 formal terms -- well, did you have the right to issue commands, and may
9 we have your comments?
10 A. Well, yes, I couldn't issue orders to him, and I didn't do that
11 either, but I think what is more important here is what we wanted to
12 achieve and what we did achieve. That's more important than how -- what
13 we call the document. That was immaterial.
14 Q. Did you have any military training of any kind, you and
15 Mr. Stojic and the Defence Department, so that you would know how
16 documents should be written, what a command is, what an order is, what an
17 instruction is or whatever?
18 A. Well, Mr. Siljeg, who came from the Yugoslav People's Army and
19 was a well-educated and trained soldier, knew the terminology better than
20 me. I was somebody who did not have this basic formal military training,
21 so I might have called things by a different name. But let me repeat
22 once again, that was unimportant.
23 Q. And now the last document that we're going to look at is P --
24 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm sorry. We leave aside your view on what is
25 important and what is not, but I would like to ask you: You could not,
1 of course, give an order to Colonel Obradovic, that's for sure, but could
2 you not give an order to the medical staff which was attached to
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I have said that this was not
5 important. This order that I termed "order" and to which Siljeg
6 protested actually had not been addressed to Siljeg, but his assistant
7 for healthcare. His assistant for healthcare in the hierarchy chain,
8 obviously he was under the command of Mr. Siljeg. However, in the
9 professional sense, I believe that I could issue a document and call it
10 an order. I agree with you, it was my personal belief that I was in a
11 position to do that.
12 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
13 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation]
14 Q. P5035 is the next document, a report by the Spanish delegation.
15 I'm going to show you just some excerpts that you already saw in the
16 proofing session.
17 Item 5 of this report refers to the hospital in West Mostar. It
18 says that the hospital was under construction for ten years. Over the
19 past 18 months, they had about 6.000 seriously wounded that they operated
20 on. It has problems with the supply of water and electricity. They
21 don't have all the necessary medicines. In addition to that, they also
22 need more adequate medical equipment. The doctors complain that they get
23 help only from foreign religious organisations, but were receiving barely
24 any support from the International Red Cross and the UNHCR.
25 And now on the following page, we have all the problems that you
1 pointed out with regard to the situation in Nova Bila, problems with the
2 International Red Cross. You repeat that you have proposed --
3 A. It's not that I am repeating that. He says that.
4 Q. What I'm saying is that in the conversation that you had with
5 him, you repeated that, as you had so many times, under 7 is the visit to
6 the Detention Centre Heliodrom, and it says here the conditions are poor;
7 however, it seems that the detainees are rather well fed and
8 accommodated, and the detainees themselves had installed central heating.
9 This was on the 14th of September, 1993, when this document was drafted.
10 They had running water 24 hours a day, and they have plenty of toilets
11 and bathrooms. Since the Heliodrom is normally barracks, there is a
12 system of ventilation. The detainees were registered by the
13 International Red Cross. There are two outpatient clinics, with one
14 doctor each and a few nurses. There are no health problems:
15 "When we asked the detainees about food, they told us that they
16 were receiving two meals a day, and the warden said that they were
17 receiving three meals a day. The detainees where wearing normal civilian
18 clothes, and they were obliged to work in the camp."
19 I'm now going to ask you to try and compare this with item 10,
20 which describes the detention centre in East Mostar. This detention
21 centre is in the cellar of a civilian building. It does not have a
22 system of ventilation, to speak of. There is just one bulb. The light
23 was poor. All the detainees wore prison clothes, and they had just
24 returned from work. They looked at -- rather terrified, and they didn't
25 want to speak in the presence of their guards:
1 "Still, we did receive some information from them. They
2 confirmed that they had received one meal a day, plenty of water, and
3 that they had to do all sorts of jobs and dig trenches. They said that
4 they had not been visited by any representatives of the International Red
5 Cross and that they had not been given an opportunity to send messages to
6 the International Red Cross."
7 And the last sentence in this report says:
8 "The conditions of life of the detainees on the east side are
9 much worse than the conditions on the west bank at Heliodrom and can be
10 described as really sad."
11 Mr. Bagaric, I have left this document for the end of your
12 examination-in-chief. This confirms what you told us, and that is that
13 once you invested effort, the health conditions improved. Does this
14 report improve [as interpreted] that?
15 A. How much time do I have?
16 Q. You tell me.
17 A. Yes, it does confirm that. It's, in a certain way, an objective
18 picture of the situation. He mentions two outpatient clinics, doctors,
19 which were all the result of our efforts that we invested together with
20 the inmates who were doctors. Therefore, it is obvious that the Muslim
21 Bosniak side worked against my wishes, but that was not a reason for us
22 not to do our utmost in order to provide healthcare for the people who
23 were there. I believe that this is a good confirmation of everything;
24 maybe not everything, but at least that part that I was talking about and
25 that concerned the life in the prisons.
1 Q. My last question, Mr. Bagaric: You personally were engaged in
2 the Health Department, and you were also engaged when it came to the
3 assistance to the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina. You tried to help them
4 in medical equipment and the supplies. Did you enjoy Mr. Stojic's
5 support in all that?
6 A. I must admit that - and I have to be honest here, and I promised
7 I would be sincere - that it was not every time, although this probably
8 wasn't fair, that I did not ask Mr. Stojic's support every time for this
9 or that. However, I enjoyed that support in absolute terms, and I
10 believe that I had a carte blanche for my efforts, and I behaved in
11 accordance with that, even in such situations when I was not in charge of
12 the things directly. However, I felt that an additional intervention was
13 required, that an additional pressure was needed for the things to be put
14 in motion and improved under the conditions from hell. If I may add to
15 that one more sentence.
16 Q. Go ahead.
17 A. When we were engaged in that operation together with Sally
18 Backer, I don't know how else would have we been able to do it if we
19 would not have Mr. Stojic's support and the support of General Praljak
20 who was at the time I don't know what. He was the commander of the whole
21 area, I believe. And so what was needed was a cease-fire for -- at least
22 on our side, for this evacuation to be successful. And this is the whole
23 truth, and nothing but the truth.
24 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.
25 Thank you, Your Honours. This brings my examination-in-chief to
1 an end.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Before we have a break, the
3 Judges would like to know the intention of counsels for
4 cross-examination. I'll proceed very quickly.
5 Of the three counsels, are there going to be any questions to the
7 MS. PINTER: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, we do.
8 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] We also have some questions for
9 this witness.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] D5.
11 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, as things
12 stand now, we won't have any questions. However, this is not our final
14 MR. IBRISIMOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we will probably
15 not examine this witness.
16 MR. KARNAVAS: Good afternoon, Your Honours, Mr. President. Good
17 afternoon, sir, and good afternoon to everyone in and around the
19 We will not have any questions. However, we have yielded our
20 time to the Praljak Defence. But we do wish to take this opportunity to
21 thank the gentleman for coming here to give his evidence. Thank you.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine.
23 During the break, D3 and D4 will calculate their time, and D5 as
24 well, if necessary.
25 Let's have a 20-minute break.
1 --- Recess taken at 3.50 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 4.14 p.m.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Right. I give the floor to the
4 first counsel.
5 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, good afternoon.
6 Good afternoon to everybody in the courtroom.
7 Cross-examination by Ms. Alaburic:
8 Q. Dr. Bagaric, good afternoon to you too.
9 A. Good afternoon.
10 Q. Dr. Bagaric, we know each other, don't we?
11 A. Yes, we do.
12 Q. You will also be a Defence witness for General Petkovic?
13 A. If you say so, yes.
14 Q. For the time being, we have agreed that you will testify about
15 the meeting that you mentioned in Jablanica at the beginning of May 1993,
16 of your departure to Sovici, and the inspection of the Jablanica and
17 Konjic regions, and your attempts to calm the tensions, to evacuate the
18 wounded, and to establish a normal situation there; is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Dr. Bagaric, we met last Sunday, in the evening; is that correct?
21 A. Yes, it is.
22 Q. And we spent some two hours in a conversation; is that correct?
23 A. Yes, I believe so.
24 Q. Can you tell the Trial Chamber whether we discussed the documents
25 that Mr. Stojic's Defence prepared for your examination-in-chief or did
1 we discuss other topics?
2 A. I don't think we discussed any documents at all.
3 Q. Very well, then. I'm going to ask you several questions with
4 regard to your testimony so far. The first group of questions will deal
5 with the organisation of healthcare in military units. And I believe
6 that so far you have been very fair in interpreting the decisions on the
7 internal establishment and formation of the military units, but I believe
8 that some things have not been placed well in time. So I will need some
10 I'm going to ask you about your meeting in Sarajevo towards the
11 end of August 1993 and the agreement that was reached between Delic and
12 Petkovic with regard to the evacuation of the wounded. You said that you
13 attended that meeting, so I'm going to have some questions for you with
14 this regard.
15 I'm also going to ask you several questions about the detention
16 centres, and primarily those that arise from your answers provided
17 earlier today, and I will particularly ask you to clarify an answer of
18 yours which I believe is very important.
19 And if we still have the time left, I'm going to ask you just one
20 question about your answer with regard to the inspection of Sovici,
21 although this is going to be the main topic of your testimony in the
22 Petkovic case. And I'm going to ask that question, because I promised my
23 learned friend Scott that I would ask that question, because it was
24 provoked by his reaction to one of your answers about the alleged crimes
25 that were either committed or not committed in Sovici.
1 Let's start with first things first, and that is healthcare in
2 military units. First of all, Dr. Bagaric, I'm going to try and sum up
3 what you told us yesterday and what is going to be the main topic of my
4 questions. This is recorded on page 21 of yesterday's transcript.
5 Dr. Bagaric, if I'm not mistaken, you said that the Healthcare
6 Sector in the Defence Department organised and coordinated the work of
7 medical personnel in the military units; is that correct?
8 A. Well, you can put it that way, but this is not the whole answer.
9 But, yes, you can put it that way.
10 Q. You will have an opportunity to clarify further. You said,
11 amongst other things, that the objective of the organisation of
12 healthcare was to take the healthcare from the Logistics Sector?
13 A. Yes, you're correct.
14 Q. And to provide healthcare professionals in the military units
15 with the status of assistant commanders?
16 A. That was our intention. However, I must admit that we did not
17 succeed completely. There were places when this was carried through, but
18 there were also others where this did not happen.
19 Q. You've said that the success depended on the commander of the
20 military units, so you were successful at places and at others you were
21 not. Would that sum up your yesterday's testimony fairly?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Could you please look at my binder of documents. We will take
24 each of them at a time, one by one. We have the first document, which is
25 2D567 or 2D00567.
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. This is a decision on the internal organisation of the Defence
3 Department. Please look at the last page of the document and tell us,
4 please, Dr. Bagaric, who was authorised to issue such a decision? Who
5 issued this decision, actually?
6 A. I don't know. I don't remember this specific document. However,
7 according to what I see here, I can see who signed the decision.
8 Q. It arises from the signature this decision was issued by the head
9 of the Defence Department, with the agreement of the president of the
11 A. Judging by the document, that was the case.
12 Q. Under item 5 that you spoke about yesterday, and this item deals
13 with the Medical Sector, a reference is made to the chief of medical care
14 of the brigade; is that correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Would it be fair to conclude that that health professional did
17 not enjoy the status of assistant brigade commander, but rather that he
18 was the chief of a medical corps?
19 A. You can't infer this, either one or the other.
20 Q. Can you please look at item 4, dealing with the Security Sector,
21 and also look at the bullet point 3.
22 A. Just a moment, please, bear with me. I have to find it.
23 Q. It's one page before. It says here:
24 "Assistant commander for security in operative zone commands are
25 appointed by the head of the Defence Department ..."
1 And I skip the rest. And it says further:
2 "On assistant commanders for security are appointed by the head
3 of the Defence Department," and so on and so forth.
4 Tell me, please, would it arise from this that the commanders of
5 operative zones and brigades had assistants for security?
6 A. I would kindly ask you - please don't hold it against me. If I
7 don't have to, I would not answer questions about security, because I
8 don't know anything about that.
9 Q. I'm not you, Dr. Bagaric, about security. I'm just trying to
10 show you that this decision that we are talking about right now
11 establishes who the assistant of commanders of the operative zone or
12 brigades are, and I'm trying to tell you that this is prescribed by the
13 Security Sector, that this is prescribed by the Sector for Morale and
14 Education, which is under item 6, and this does not exist in the
15 Health Sector area, and hence my question: Does this mean that this
16 decision did not provide for the commanders of operative zones and
17 brigades to have assistants for healthcare; it is only prescribed that
18 they will be chief of the Medical Corps?
19 A. No, you're not right.
20 Q. So what was the situation like?
21 A. I don't know. Actually, not that I don't know; I can tell you
22 what it says here and what it doesn't say here. I can only tell you how
23 it was in practice in real life and how we functioned. I really can't
24 tell you what would happen if something else had happened. I apologise
25 for this answer of mine. I really don't understand this type of
1 conversation. Does this mean that this was the case and the other thing
2 was not the case? I really can't follow you. I don't understand you.
3 I can tell you how it looked like in practice.
4 Q. Mr. Bagaric, I'm asking you about this decision because you only
5 spoke about this decision in the examination-in-chief by the Stojic
6 Defence, and I'm going to be going through the exact same documents with
8 I'm going to show you the next document, which is the next one in
9 the series, which is P02477, 2477, and this is another decision on the
10 internal organisation of the Defence Department, dated 20 May 1993.
11 Please look at the item 5, and again the reference is made only to the
12 chief of the medical corps brigade. Can we agree at least on one thing,
13 Dr. Bagaric, and that is that this decision does not mention the
14 assistant commander for healthcare? Can we agree at least on that? Is
15 there any doubt about that?
16 A. If you look at this document, then, you will see that a reference
17 is made to the chief of the brigade medical corps. However, you cannot
18 see -- it does not transpire from this document what his position was
19 within the brigade. In other words, it doesn't say here that he was an
20 assistant commander, but this is not conclusive. You can't say that he
21 wasn't, because there were other documents that could have regulated
22 this, and they indeed did.
23 Q. Since you were a military professional, would you say that the
24 position of a chief of a -- of the chief of a service, and, on the one
25 hand, and the position of the assistant commander are completely the same
1 positions or not?
2 A. To be honest, I don't know.
3 Q. Can you then agree that in this decision there is no single
4 reference to the operational zones and the medical service in the
5 operation zones?
6 A. I apologise.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] There could be a confusion.
8 I'm trying to shed some light on this.
9 A doctor in a military unit, what is his main role?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] His main role is to monitor the
11 health situation in the unit. And if that unit is engaged in combat,
12 then he has to determine the routes for evacuation of the wounded,
13 establish the points for reception, and to establish the service so that
14 it could function in the field on the strength of the unit and follow its
15 war path.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine. Now, coming back to
17 Ms. Alaburic's question as to why the brigade commander doesn't have a
18 deputy or an assistant, is it because the doctor has a specific role,
19 which is to provide treatment, which means that he's not in the
20 front-line for military operations like the assistant for security or
21 propaganda would be, which would account for the fact that the doctor,
22 like the imam or the Catholic priest in the unit, has a specific -- a
23 particular position in the unit?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand you, Your Honour.
25 However, I believe that here, in this concrete case, when I analyse this,
1 I must admit that I don't remember this document at the time when it was
2 drafted. However, there is an evident error that was made in this
3 document here. The chief of the brigade medical corps is mistakenly
4 incorporated into this document, and let me tell you why. Here a
5 reference is made to the Healthcare Sector, the Healthcare Sector, and
6 when you're talking about the Healthcare Sector in this document, then
7 you exclusively refer to the segment over which I was in direct command,
8 and I'm talking about the 25 or 30 men that I was in charge of, and there
9 were three basic elements there. One of them was the service for the
10 care of the wounded, the chief of the Medical Corps, and the chief of the
11 Control and Inspection Service. In other words, war hospitals are a
12 separate story, and I can understand that they are here. However, the
13 chief of the medical corps of the brigade, this is a pure mistake, a pure
14 nonsense that I probably did not see at the time. If I had seen it, I
15 would have intervened, because this is nonsense. How can you have a
16 chief of the brigade medical corps if that person was in his unit?
17 On the other hand, Ms. Alaburic is right in the part where she
18 says that there should also be the main person for healthcare at the
19 level of a military district. This is actually the proof that the chief
20 of the medical corps of the brigade has found himself here by mistake.
21 And if this was my proposal at the time, then I made a mistake, but I
22 don't think so. I really don't know how this ended up here, because it's
23 a -- it's a sheer nonsense.
24 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Mr. Bagaric, in my questions I'm not trying to -- I'm not trying
1 to entrap you by my questions.
2 A. Well, I'm not setting a trap for you either.
3 Q. Let's look at the following document that the Defence of
4 Bruno Stojic showed you. This is document number --
5 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Ms. Alaburic, I would like to come back to your
6 last question and the issue of assistant commander.
7 If you look at the original text of the last subparagraph of
8 Chapter C, like in "Caesar," they speak of "bomocnik
9 prestonika," [phoen], and then there is the "prestonik" [phoen] himself
10 mentioned. Now, "bomocnik prestonika," is that not something like
11 assistant commander, assistant to the commander?
12 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, with your leave, I
13 would like to say this: In the second paragraph of item number 5, it
14 says that the assistant to the head of the Health Department,
15 Dr. Bagaric, will appoint all the other officials and operatives for
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no, I have to explain. It's
18 not true, this is not correct. May I? May I be given the leave?
19 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I am in document 2477, number 5, paragraph 2. I
20 do not see any reference to any person appointing someone?
21 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, microphone:
22 "All of the employees and operatives are assigned by this
23 assistant head for medical services with previous approval of the head of
24 the Defence Department or a person authorised by him," which means --
25 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Which means that I was somewhat mistaken. Thank
1 you for enlightening me.
2 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Dr. Bagaric --
4 A. I have to come back to this. I have to explain for the Trial
5 Chamber to understand, because I'm finding it difficult to understand it.
6 And I appreciate that it must be even more difficult for you, who have
7 never served in the army. Will you allow me, please?
8 Under item 5, Your Honours --
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. We're all in the army, so
10 don't say that the Judges were never in the army.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not say that. I said "in our
12 army." In the army, that was rather complicated.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Okay.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The second paragraph of item 5 --
15 and I believe that the counsel has been mistaken because of the wording
16 of this particular paragraph. It says here all the other employees and
17 operatives are assigned by the assistant head for Medical Services, which
18 was myself, I was the assistant head for Medical Services, with previous
19 approval of the head of the Defence Department, but this refers to my --
20 yesterday's Healthcare Sector, because that's what my small unit was
21 called, and that unit was a unit within the Defence Department. It was
22 my Healthcare Sector, and I was the one who assigned those people and
23 proposed those people. And I am talking about 25 to 30 people
24 altogether, not all the people in Healthcare Services. There was no way
25 I could appoint somebody in Central Bosnia whom I didn't know, with whom
1 I did not have any contact, and I didn't know who the local commander
2 over there appointed as a doctor. It would be pointless. How could I,
3 as a doctor, be in command? I, from the headquarters, how could I be in
4 command over a doctor who was serving in the hills, engaged in combat?
5 That would be totally insane. I've already told you several times that
6 our organisation was not perfect, but there was still some sort of
7 organisation. So that's the mistake. This is what I'm trying to tell
8 you, and as soon as you understand this, we'll be able to be on the same
10 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. We are on the same page, Mr. Bagaric, but let's move on along the
12 documents. Could you please look at 2D927, which is a document that was
13 issued by Mr. Bruno Stojic, and this is the establishment of the command
14 of the operative zone. You already commented on this yesterday, and we
15 dealt with bullet point 30 of this document. And you clarified for us,
16 if I understood properly your conversation with my learned friend Nozica,
17 that this is about the chief of Medical Care Services.
18 A. What are we talking about? Are we talking about the brigade?
19 Q. This is the operation zone.
20 A. This is the operation zone, yes.
21 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I can see that you're talking at the same time.
22 You must make an effort to be a bit slower and to expect to -- to wait a
23 while after the question has been put, because it first has to be
24 translated. This is very demanding, it's really a tough exercise, but it
25 is absolutely essential.
1 I think you can proceed or resume a bit ahead, because ...
2 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Mr. Bagaric, we can say that yesterday you confirmed to the
4 Stojic Defence that under bullet point 30 is the position or the
5 establishment position of the chief of the Medical Services, is that
6 correct, within the operation zone?
7 A. It says "Medical Services," and what is missing here is an
8 explanation. I don't know what it is. It says "Medical Services" here,
9 but I assume that since there's just one professional, that this refers
10 to the doctor who is in charge of medical services in the military zone.
11 Q. Look at bullet point 26, please.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. I'll repeat what I said for the record, and let's take it slowly.
14 Look at point 26. You say: "Assistant to the commander for logistics."
15 Is that right?
16 A. Yes, that's right.
17 Q. Now, tell me, please, Mr. Bagaric, knowing documents of this
18 kind, does it follow that the head of the Medical Corps was in that
19 Department for Logistics or, rather, that he was subordinate to the
20 assistant to the commander for logistics?
21 A. No, I can't understand it that way, because he's at place 30,
22 whereas this man for logistics is in the 26th place. I don't think
23 that's how it was.
24 Q. Now take a look at the next document, which is 2D1370, which is
25 the brigade formation plan. And it's a document that you discussed
1 yesterday with Ms. Nozica, if you remember.
2 Now take a look at the following. Well, you discussed the
3 positions on page 4 of the Croatian and page 6 of the English, under
4 number 8, where it says: "Chief of Medical Service." Can you confirm,
5 Dr. Bagaric, that that is how it was or was yesterday? Is that what we
6 said yesterday?
7 A. What formation did this refer to?
8 Q. The brigade.
9 A. Well, it should be as the chief of the Medical Service.
10 Q. Now turn over the page to see what department that belongs to.
11 And it would appear that the Logistics Department, among other things,
12 has under its composition a chief of a medical service, and tell me, does
13 that follow from this document, Dr. Bagaric? Does it follow from the
15 A. Just a moment. I'll tell you. That is what follows from this
16 document. However, I don't know who compiled this plan, so it wasn't
17 important, as far as I was concerned, that it should be put down on paper
18 in one way or another. What was important was what would happen on the
19 ground, in the field, and what the status would be. Would he be the
20 assistant to the commander or some number 10 man in logistics? Do you
21 see what I'm getting at, what I mean?
22 Q. Now take a look at document P566, please, which is the battalion
23 formation plan or chart, and that's to be found on page 2. And if you
24 look at the right-hand corner, you said that the Medical Department came
25 under the composition of the Logistics Platoon or the medical squad was
1 under the Logistics Platoon. Now, from this document, does that follow,
2 that the medical corps or squad was under the Logistics Platoon?
3 A. What date is this document, what's the date of it?
4 Q. It's the 9th of October, 1992.
5 A. Ah, well, that's where the problem lies, that's the problem.
6 Somebody compiled this as they thought it -- they drew it up according to
7 what they thought it should look like on paper, but they forgot the fact.
8 We established the Medical Corps before the brigade was formed at all,
9 any brigade, before any brigade was set up. How did we do that? We set
10 up the Main Medical Staff or headquarters, and then the chiefs of the
11 different medical squads or corps, and we looked at the municipalities
12 and who was the chief in the municipality medical centre. But looking at
13 this piece of paper, you could understand it the way you've just
15 Q. From your answers yesterday, I gathered that organisation for the
16 health service in the military units of this kind was not very good, and
17 that's why it needed to be reorganised. Did I understand you correctly,
18 was my interpretation of what you said correct?
19 A. Yes, in the part where I said that we doctors weren't satisfied
20 with staying under logistics, and we tried to emerge from this logistics
22 Q. Well, then I did understand you correctly. I just wanted to
23 offer up the following thesis: that the reorganisation was supposed to
24 separate the Health Service from Logistics and put medical persons in the
25 different units and in the operative zones; right?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Now, the next document is 2D1540, and it is a document that you
3 discussed yesterday. It is an order, Bruno Stojic, the 8th of October;
4 that is to say, approximately a year after the documents we looked at a
5 moment ago. It is an order from Bruno Stojic?
6 A. Yes. The 8th of October, 1993, that is the order, yes.
7 Q. Now, in the introduction, it says that he is issuing the
8 following command because of the problems with commanding and directing
9 in HVO formations when it comes to wartime healthcare, and that the
10 command is designed to resolve the situation that came into effect
11 because as a result of irreverence of organisational structures of the
12 military; is that right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. If we analyse the first three points of this command or order or
15 document, we'll see that there are certain functions which we did not
16 have, at least not under those titles and names, in the documents that we
17 have seen so far, and they are the chief of the operative zone for
18 wartime healthcare, then the chief of the brigade's wartime healthcare,
19 and the chief of the battalion's wartime healthcare; is that right,
20 Mr. Bagaric -- Dr. Bagaric? These are new posts that we haven't seen yet
21 in the documents we've looked at?
22 A. Well, we haven't seen them in documents, but we did see them on
23 the ground, in reality. In certain places, it was like this, and in
24 others, it wasn't. And for it to be as is stipulated here, we called for
25 the changes to be made, the restructuring, and that's a fact.
1 Q. Now, tell me, does this command state that the chiefs of wartime
2 healthcare will be the assistants to the commanders of the operative zone
3 or brigade or, rather, battalion; is that right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Now, in essence, does this command change the decision on the
6 establishment of Defence Department that we looked at a moment ago?
7 A. Which department do you mean?
8 Q. The Health Sector of the Defence Department.
9 A. No, this order has nothing at all to do with the establishment we
10 looked at a moment ago, and nothing changed in that establishment, but I
11 still maintain that the brigade sort of lost its way and found its way
12 there. How could a brigade not have a battalion? It's nonsensical.
13 Q. Now, Dr. Bagaric, you told us several times, and I'll quote you,
14 that the report on the wounded could be compiled only by a physician
15 because that kind of report would give a description of the wound. You
16 told us about the professional medical duties involved.
17 Now, could you tell us, what did the health workers, regardless
18 of the military unit they were in, what did they have to do? Were they
19 engaged in professional medical work? That's my first question, in fact.
20 A. Well, of course. Of course what they did involved professional
21 medical duties.
22 Q. Now, what duties, apart from these professional medical duties,
23 did they perform?
24 A. Well, let me put it this way: Professional medical duties,
25 that's one term, and it's seen differently in peacetime and wartime. In
1 peacetime, it involves the profession and care of the sick, but
2 professional medical duties during a war includes other things as well;
3 ensuring the evacuation of the wounded, evacuation routes, and the
4 technology of taking care of them in the field, which is something that
5 doesn't have to be done during peacetime. So a doctor, a physician in a
6 unit, was somebody who -- well, was a doctor, first and foremost, so
7 performing his professional duties, but he was also a soldier. That is
8 to say, his commander, his commanding officer, could say, for example,
9 The unit is going to March off in such and such a direction. Provide
10 medical security. So that would be my answer.
11 Q. Dr. Bagaric, I didn't ask you about the contents of professional
12 medical duties or what they entailed, but I asked you that apart from
13 their professional medical duties, whatever those were, and regardless of
14 whose orders they were under, did they have any other duties that weren't
15 professional medical duties?
16 A. I don't understand that question.
17 Q. For example, did they take any military decisions or decisions
18 relating to security, or anything that doesn't come under medicine?
19 A. Yes. They had to take many decisions that had nothing to do with
20 their profession in peacetime, but in wartime of course they had
21 something to do with their profession, they were linked to their
22 vocational training. But, once again, I don't really see where you're
23 getting -- see where you're going.
24 Q. Let's look at the next document, which is 4D1326, and maybe
25 things will become clearer. This is a chart which the Petkovic Defence
2 A. What number did you say?
3 Q. 4D1326. Davor Lazic, who is sitting next to me, compiled this on
4 the basis of the document that we discussed a moment ago, 2D1540, and
5 from that document we can see what is expounded in points 4, 5, and 6 of
6 the order issued by Mr. Bruno Stojic.
7 Let me correct the document number. 4D1326. Oh, I'm sorry,
8 that's -- that was the right number. I'd like to correct the other
9 number. The Stojic Defence document, on the basis of which the chart was
10 compiled, is document 2D1540. Very well.
11 Now, tell me, please, Dr. Bagaric, you know this Stojic document.
12 You saw it during the proofing session, and in blue here we marked the
13 military chain, where we see that the assistant for health was
14 responsible to the commander, and the red line is the professional chain
15 of reporting and responsibility, leading from the battalion, via the
16 brigade and the operative zone, to the Health Sector.
17 Now, Dr. Bagaric, could you tell us, please, whether this chart,
18 in your opinion, is a correct reflection of what Bruno Stojic's order
19 says, or is there something that is amiss in this chart?
20 A. This chart is an interpretation. Let me put it that way. What
21 does professional responsibility mean at all? I see that this is a term
22 that we don't see eye to eye on. There were doctors over there. Now, my
23 sector, my Health Sector, my colleagues, they won't go and question and
24 examine their professional qualifications. They are qualified because
25 they're doctors, and so they have a certain duty to perform, and we can
1 take it that they're doing their job properly.
2 Q. Dr. Bagaric, I do have the right to interrupt you, because I want
3 to ask you the following question: The term "professional" is not
4 something that I have thought up. The term "professional" is used in the
5 Stojic document that you discussed yesterday, so please take a look at
6 points 4, 5, and 6, where it says that the chief of wartime health in the
7 professional aspect tables a report and is responsible to the chief of
8 wartime healthcare and the Health Sector ultimately. So this term
9 "professional," as far as I understood it yesterday --
10 A. Just a moment. Let me find the document. Ah, here it is.
11 Q. If I understood correctly, you told us yesterday that you, in
12 fact, prepared a draft for -- the draft for this order.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. So you used the term "professional"?
15 A. All right. If I did use it and if I did compile it, then I'll
16 explain it.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Wait until counsel has finished
18 the question before you answer, because there's an overlapping all the
20 Witness, listen. This document is a source of confusion. Even
21 for a Judge, there is a series of problems on the basis of this document.
22 Let's take a concrete case to try and understand this situation.
23 Imagine a doctor who works in a battalion, and the commander of
24 the battalion tells him, At 6.00 a.m., we will attack the enemy defence,
25 and therefore you have to come with us because there's a risk of having
1 some wounded people, so we need your presence, you have to be there. In
2 this case, the doctor will have -- will be obliged to obey because he's a
3 military doctor, and therefore he's going to have to follow the unit. So
4 what one sees in blue here, he's under the authority of the commander of
5 the battalion who tells him to be present. But then when he is going to
6 treat the wounded, that becomes his own responsibility. The commander of
7 the battalion hasn't got to tell him -- will not tell him whether he
8 should operate or give a transfusion. That becomes the responsibility of
9 the medic.
10 Would you be in agreement with what I've just said?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Absolutely.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So with this example as
13 presented by Ms. Alaburic, he seems to be under the authority of the
14 commander of the battalion, but these red lines, he can come to you to
15 say, This is the problem: We have three wounded. We need a helicopter,
16 but there is no helicopter. So you have to make contact with
17 ICCR [as interpreted] or the Spanish Battalion to solve the problem
18 because we have a medical problem here. In this case, would it happen
19 that way? How would it be solved?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You're quite right. In a case like
21 that, the doctor would first of all talk to his commander, military
22 commander, that is, and the military commander would organise a
23 helicopter flight. I can't organise a helicopter if I am far away, and
24 I'm a doctor anyway. So I don't deal in logistics and can't order a
25 helicopter to fly. So that's where the trick lies, if I can use the
2 Now, if we're talking about some kind of professional
3 terminology, I agree with counsel that this is really rather
4 disconcerting, because it does say so on paper, all that does say so on
5 paper, but things worked -- well, the Medical Sector should have worked
6 in the field you way you described it, and that's how it was and that's
7 what we wanted to achieve, which means that the chief of the Health
8 Service or the number-one person in the unit is the assistant to the
9 commander. Now, why? Because we have -- there were special
10 circumstances. Our commanders were very often, especially those in the
11 Logistics Centre, were uneducated people, whereas a doctor was a
12 professional, he was a physician, educated, regardless of his military
13 knowledge, and he would not have been able to act, he would not have been
14 able to make decisions, if somebody who was a logistics man in the unit
15 were to command him and be in charge of him. So we wanted to avoid this
16 in order to allow us to function better, but I was not superior to him at
17 all, in the sense of any of the activities that you mentioned, but only
18 in the sense that, for example, when Dr. Curic, whom we mention fairly
19 often here, goes out into the field and sees, for example, whether
20 preventive medicine, preventive medical protection is being put in place,
21 he could give guide-lines and instructions to the physician and even
22 issue orders to improve the professional situation as a professional
23 himself, so that's a good example.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic, concrete
25 examples, please, because if we don't have them, nobody will understand
1 anything anymore.
2 JUDGE TRECHSEL: May I --
3 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if I may --
4 JUDGE TRECHSEL: [Interpretation] Allow me for just a minute. I
5 would like to try and give an example, a practical example.
6 Let's say, for instance, that the chief medic sees that the
7 reserves and plaster supply are diminishing, so he asks to keep the
8 plaster for broken legs, but not for broken arms. For arms, you'll have
9 to find another means. Would this be an example of an order which could
10 be sent by the red line which is indicated here?
11 You have to answer verbally, because if you just move your head,
12 there is nothing which says so in the transcript.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, a doctor in the unit was
14 logistically relying on the logistical support on his own unit. If he
15 needed dressing or anything else of this sort, then they were the ones
16 who had to provide it. He did not have to concern himself with that.
17 However, since our circumstances were very special and we did not have
18 enough materials and medicines, then we, as the Main Medical Corps,
19 before we were incorporated within the Defence Department, we had
20 established our own warehouse where we stocked medicines from donations,
21 so when we received a request from a doctor on the ground, we would help
22 him as much as we could, because there was no medical logistics within
23 the unit itself. And that, I hope, answers your question.
24 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Yes, thank you.
25 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Mr. Bagaric, could you please explain something. In answering
2 Judge Antonetti's question, you have often said that you concluded that
3 the things were not functioning, that you decided to reorganise things.
4 When you say "we" in this case, who exactly do you mean?
5 A. Who do I mean? I mean doctors. From time to time, one of the
6 doctors from my sector, the Healthcare Sector, inspected the area and
7 would talk to the doctor in the field and hear from him certain
8 objections to the prevalent conditions, and then in a certain way we
9 would build our policy for the functioning of the service, but we never
10 interfered with its operation. In general terms, we were able and we
11 were in a position to institute some changes for the better. However, it
12 was not on a daily basis that we communicated with every single doctor on
13 the ground. It was impossible. It would have been pointless. No single
14 military in the world does that, and it would have been totally
15 pointless, nonsensical.
16 Q. Dr. Bagaric, again you're using the pronoun "we." Does this mean
17 it is you professionals in the Healthcare Sector in the Defence
18 Department; is that who you're referring to?
19 A. Not only that. I said "us doctors." I'm talking about the whole
20 profession, the whole medical profession, and I meant those who were in
21 the field and us, because we did communicate from time to time, we did
22 monitor the situation on the ground, and we adapted to the situation as
23 much as we could in order to assist them as much as we could.
24 Q. Dr. Bagaric, I am asking you: Who had the authority to issue a
25 decision to reorganise the Healthcare Service, who held that authority?
1 A. In order for this to happen, this was primarily within the
2 purview of the commander at the highest level of the military, and in our
3 own case those were also chiefs of medical services of military
4 districts, and of course we all participated in that.
5 Q. Dr. Bagaric, you have to explain one thing for me. Who were the
6 commanders at the highest level of the military who had the authority to
7 issue decisions on the organisation of the Healthcare Service in military
8 units? I would ask you to tell us precisely the position or function.
9 You can give us names, whatever you will, but please be very precise and
10 tell us who it was.
11 A. Well, I said it. Those were the commanders of the war hospitals,
12 the commanders -- what are we talking about?
13 Q. Dr. Bagaric, I'm asking you very concretely about the
14 organisation of the entire Healthcare Service, whether it will be part of
15 the Ministry of Defence or whether it will be under the Main Staff,
16 whether there will be a chief of the Medical Service, or whether the
17 person will be the assistant commander of a unit. The complete
18 organisation of healthcare, who was it who was authorised to decide on
20 A. The formal authority to write something, as it says here and as
21 you can see it here on the paper, it was the Ministry of Defence. That's
22 where the formal authority lie. But this was prepared with the commander
23 of the Main Staff, the commanders of the units, the doctors, the
24 number-one persons, doctors. We have seen a decision which was not of
25 that kind. This is what I've been telling you about. We still
1 functioned I would say under specific circumstances, which is
2 understandable, and it is not always that everything followed word on the
3 paper. I understand what you're trying to say, but I am not willing to
4 accept that, because that's not how things were, because -- and I
6 Q. What am I trying to say, Mr. Bagaric?
7 A. Let's put it this way: You are trying to convince me all this
8 time that I, as the commander or, rather, the assistant head of the
9 Defence Department [as interpreted] was the direct commander of every
10 doctor in every unit, which is a nonsense. That's simply how it did not
11 happen, and if somebody had pushed me into accepting that, I would not
12 have accepted that because it's not normal. It would not have been
14 Q. Dr. Bagaric, please tell me which of my questions, which of my
15 remarks or anything that I've said has made you conclude that this is
16 what I'm aiming at?
17 A. From everything that you have told me so far.
18 Q. Tell me, Dr. Bagaric, when you say that you were the number-one
19 person in the healthcare of the HVO -- you said it several times earlier
20 today. Do you remember, do you remember that you said it?
21 A. Okay, I'll accept that I've said it. However, this had a very
22 special and symbolical meaning. What does it mean to be number-one
23 person? That means to be the highest-position person, the person at the
24 highest position with very concrete powers.
25 Q. I have just one more question for you dealing with this area.
1 I've prepared a document that deals with the Croatian Army. This is
2 4D1427. I wanted to show you the diagram on page 2 both in Croatian and
3 in English. It says here that it is within the purview of the chief of
4 the Main Staff of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Croatia is also the
5 Administration for Logistics, and on the following page there is a
6 definition of everything that is under the Administration for Logistics,
7 and it says here that that administration also contains healthcare.
8 Based on --
9 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm very sorry, Ms. Alaburic. I would like,
10 Dr. Bagaric, that you would look at the last question [sic] you have
11 given. You were asked:
12 "Weren't you the number one?"
13 And you said:
14 "Okay, I'll accept that I've said it. However, this is a very
15 special and symbolic meaning. What does it mean to be number-one person?
16 That means to be the highest-position person, the person at the highest
17 position, with very concrete powers."
18 Now, what is missing, what is missing, is: Does that correspond
19 to your position or were you explaining that you were not the man who had
20 real power and who were really the boss? Were you the boss or were you
21 not the boss? That's the question, put very, very primitively.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. I was the
23 highest-position doctor in the Ministry of Health, i.e., in the Defence
24 Department, which was later on the Health Ministry. However, I was the
25 highest position, and I accept with pride that I was person number one.
1 But that doesn't mean that I was directly in command of the doctors and
2 healthcare units in the field, which Ms. Alaburic is trying to imply.
3 JUDGE TRECHSEL: So I'm being a bit satirical, not -- I'm taking
4 all this very seriously, but sometimes it's easier if someone makes bit
5 drastic pictures. Mainly, what you had was the beautiful uniform and the
6 nice hat, and everyone bowed to you, and you were made to enter the door
7 before the others. But when it came to giving orders, to making other
8 people do what you wanted them to do, you had not much of that kind of
9 power. Is that what you are telling us?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, that's not that. Your Honour,
11 I was the chief of the Main Medical Staff at the beginning, before the
12 Defence Department was ever established and before the Defence Ministry
13 were established. When they were established, I was the highest-position
14 doctor and I assumed the position of the assistant head. And it is not
15 true and I can't say that I did not have powers. However, my powers were
16 concretely the following: Managing the looking after the preventive
17 medical care, in general terms, and this was done through my colleague
18 Curic in the entire area. I'm speaking in general terms. And then when
19 it comes to the service for the care of the wounded in the war hospital,
20 because the war hospitals were the most important segment of our
21 healthcare, we had 20 or so such hospitals and they were under the direct
22 commander of my subordinate for the care of the wounded. It was a very
23 important role, a very important link. So this would be one segment of
24 the healthcare. We are talking about huge responsibilities for obtaining
25 medicines, managing people, pursuing healthcare policy, talking to
1 international institutions, talking to the opposite side, attempts to
2 improve and promote the system in general terms, and that was all my
4 However, there was also the operational part of the military, and
5 we're talking units here, troops are in the field, which also included
6 healthcare professionals, and I obviously was not in a position to be in
7 command of those people because they had their own commanders in the
8 units, and a doctor should have been, and this is what we fought for, was
9 the assistant of every such commander, and every such commander was
10 directly in command of the doctor. What I'm saying is that I could not,
11 nor did it, I could not command a doctor in the field how to do his job
12 within the unit. This is what I was saying.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I'd like to understand
14 what you were doing as the number one, so let me take the following
15 theoretical cases.
16 Say you visit the Heliodrom camp and you see that there are three
17 doctors there, and there's one doing nothing because he doesn't have
18 enough work. Then you go to Gabela. We all know you didn't go there,
19 but it's a theoretical example. You go to Gabela and you see that there
20 are no doctors. You notice that at the Heliodrom camp there are three
21 doctors, and at Gabela there is none. Was it in your prerogative to say
22 that one of the three doctors of the Heliodrom had to be deployed in
23 Gabela? Was this under your province?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In this particular case, the one
25 that you have just mentioned, both centres were under the supervision of
1 the doctors in the military district. In other words, they were covered
2 by the doctors in the military districts, so I could not take somebody
3 from somewhere and transfer them somewhere else. I could issue
4 proposals, I could issue requests. And in this concrete case, if
5 something of that sort had happened, just like I could and was in a
6 position to establish the medical point within the centre, this was our
7 idea. I took all the available men who were not under the direct command
8 of the brigade or military district, and then, in agreement with the
9 doctors in a certain unit, and in this concrete case it was the unit that
10 I spoke about, and if they showed willingness, then we could implement
11 our proposal. It was an extraordinary activity that was not described
12 anywhere. Nobody could envisage that the centres would be opened and
13 that we would have to act accordingly.
14 What we did, we took each case as they came, and we did
15 everything to improve and promote the system that was in place.
16 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to
17 address Dr. Bagaric and say just one sentence in reference to what he
18 said about me implying things. I would like this to be entered into the
19 record and say that General Petkovic's Defence is not implying anything,
20 is not insinuating anything, and if we have a case to prove, we have
21 always tried in this courtroom to explain this very clearly. And if it
22 has been proven that we were not right, we're always prepared to
23 apologise. As far as implications go, I would not go any further into
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I may have misunderstood you.
1 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Yes, you may have misunderstood.
2 And I've never believed the course of my -- that my interrogation would
3 take this course.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Neither did I.
5 THE INTERPRETER: Would the speakers kindly slow down and speak
6 one at a time for the benefit of one and all. Thank you.
7 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Let me repeat.
8 Q. I showed document 4D1427, from which we could see that in the
9 Republic of Croatia, within the frameworks of the chief of the Main Staff
10 of the Armed Forces and the Health Sector, well, that was there, and I'd
11 like to ask you the following question: In Herceg-Bosna, were there any
12 dilemmas or discussions about organising the Health Sector within the
13 Main Staff?
14 A. I don't know of any such discussions and debates. However, if
15 the Main Staff saw the need for -- to have someone directly in the
16 Main Staff, they could have done that. So, therefore, I think that since
17 the Main Staff commanded the military districts and the assistant to the
18 commander of the military district was the doctor, he didn't feel the
19 need in that chain to have somebody in between. Do you understand what
20 I'm saying?
21 Q. Now, Dr. Bagaric, you told us that all the duties that the health
22 workers had in the military units were professional medical duties, and
23 from that we can conclude that somebody who did not have any medical
24 training could not make the decisions, decisions linked to the field of
25 health. Would that be a correct conclusion on my part?
1 A. May I go back to the document you showed us a moment ago, and
2 I'll answer your question.
3 There's a document missing here, because I know how the Medical
4 Corps was organised at the time in the Croatian Army. Here, what is
5 lacking is their main medical corps staff which functioned in the same
6 way that we functioned, and I have to say this here and now. That's the
7 truth, and I published this on several occasions in some articles and
8 papers I wrote. So when we established it, we established it taking the
9 example from the Republic of Croatia and some experiences gained there.
10 So in this chart here, we can see that they do have a doctor in the
11 Main Staff, that's true, but they also have another body which is called
12 the Main Medical Staff, led by General Prodan. General Prodan was at the
13 head of that body.
14 And when you ask me, gentlemen, what my tasks and duties were,
15 then, just as it was set out here, I did the equivalent. We copied that
16 system and formation and establishment, with the proviso that we asked
17 the physicians in the Croatian Army -- well, we accepted their proposals
18 for corrections, because they said that certain things needed to be
19 improved and corrected, because to have doctors within logistics was
20 unacceptable, and we found that to be the case, and that is why we
21 endeavoured to pull the doctors out of the Logistics Sector.
22 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please.
23 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Just a moment, my learned friend.
24 Q. Let me just say that I'm dealing with the Main Staff in 2008.
25 That's the document, and not at the beginning of the 1990s, and I think
1 that is indubitable, looking at the document, so it was differently
2 organized in Croatia at the beginning of the 1990s.
3 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Yes, I apologise for getting to my
4 feet, but there was a great difference between establishment in wartime
5 and peacetime, so I'd like to thank my learned colleague for clarifying
6 that point just now.
7 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Now, Dr. Bagaric, let's move on to another subject.
9 A. Yes, I'd like to propose that too. Let's move on to something
11 Q. Sarajevo.
12 A. Sarajevo is no easy topic, but much better than what we've been
13 discussing so far.
14 Q. Look at 4690, please. P4690 is the next document I would like us
15 to look at, which is an agreement on the evacuation of severely sick and
16 wounded persons, which on the Sarajevo -- at Sarajevo Airport was signed
17 by Rasim Delic and Milivoj Petkovic in August, in the presence of
18 Lieutenant-Colonel General Briquemont, Francis Briquemont,
19 Lieutenant-Colonel Francis Briquemont.
20 Now, on page 67 of yesterday's transcript, you mentioned a
21 meeting. Did you discuss this agreement at the meeting or the activities
22 that came under this agreement? If you can't remember, we can move on.
23 A. I have to say this: I was personally called up by
24 General Petkovic to attend a meeting in Sarajevo with Delic, and
25 Briquemont was also there. Now, whether it was this particular meeting,
1 I really can't say, but I do know that those matters were discussed, and
2 others as well. And that's what I said yesterday. So I'm very grateful
3 to General Petkovic, who invited me to go with him, because that gave me
4 a chance to talk to Mr. Delic, and I asked him to allow me, as the head
5 of the Medical Corps, to go to Sarajevo. So that's it. But I can't be
6 quite certain whether that was the occasion or some other occasion,
7 whether Mr. Petkovic might have gone another time and signed another
9 Q. Can you tell us whether the meeting that you mentioned was held
10 at the end of August 1993, whether it did take place?
11 A. Well, I can't remember, but I'll tell you the location. It was
12 at the airport in Sarajevo, so if that's it, then I was there.
13 Q. It says: "Done at Sarajevo Airport on the 31st," et cetera.
14 A. Well, you -- I didn't expect your aggressive questions, and they
15 are -- rather, I'm not sure I understood everything. But, yes, I was at
16 that meeting, yes.
17 Q. Now, tell me, at that meeting General Petkovic was not the
18 number-one man of the HVO, or the second man if we take Mate Boban as
19 being the number-one man; then he was the number-two man. And I have
20 P4493, which is the next document I would like us to look at, and it is
21 information by Slobodan Praljak to UNPROFOR saying that -- let me repeat
22 the number of the document, P4493, 4493. As I was saying,
23 General Praljak is informing UNPROFOR that Milivoj Petkovic has been
24 authorised to negotiate on behalf of the HVO.
25 Now, to the best of your knowledge, Dr. Bagaric, is that what
1 actually happened, that Petkovic did have that authority, regardless of
2 whether he was the commander or deputy commander of the HVO?
3 A. Well, he behaved like somebody who did have the authority, and
4 that allows me to reach my conclusions more than any document would.
5 Q. I'm now going to ask you a few questions relating to the
6 detention centres, and I'd like you to look at my third set of documents.
7 And let's look at 2D1537 first, please. You spoke about that document
8 today. And if you look at the lower left-hand corner, it says: "Send
9 to ..." Can you tell us who this report was sent to, can you decipher
11 A. It went to Dr. Curic, as it says here.
12 Q. In the translation of the document in English, what we have
13 written here is it has: "Unclear abbreviations and institution unknown."
14 What does that refer to?
15 A. It refers to our Healthcare Sector, which I headed, and it refers
16 to the Preventive Medical Care Department, led by Dr. Curic, which was --
17 who acted as additional support to the physicians in the camp and outside
18 the camp.
19 Q. So this is an abbreviation, this "GSS." The abbreviation is
20 "GSS," is that right, and it stands for "Glavni Saniteski Stozar"
21 [phoen]; is that right?
22 A. Yes, because the "GSS" was part of the Health Sector, that's
24 Q. Let's move on to the next document, 2D1538. I'd like you to tell
25 us who the document was sent to.
1 A. The same thing, to Mostar, the Main Staff, Mostar. But
2 Mr. Sutalo didn't write the name of the person, but it is to Mr. Curic.
3 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Now, I'd like to tell Their
4 Honours, the Prosecutor, and everybody else in the courtroom that this
5 portion of the document has been wrongly interpreted or, rather,
6 translated. In English it says that this report was sent to the
7 Main Staff in Mostar. And I'd also like to draw your attention to the
8 fact that the Stojic Defence, in tabling a request to have this document
9 put on the 65 ter (G) list, wrote that it was a document which was sent
10 to the Main Staff of the HVO in Mostar. And I'm referring to paragraph 5
11 of the motion that I'm referring to of the 16th of April, and I'm going
12 to quote part of the explanation given by the Stojic Defence in English,
13 and I quote:
14 [In English] "Document 2D01538 is essential to show that reports
15 on the conditions at Gabela were sent directly from the brigades to the
16 Main Staff and were not first routed through the assistant of the head of
17 the Department of the Defence for the Healthcare Sector. The manner by
18 which reports were sent reveals the nature of the links between the
19 healthcare services in brigades and the centralised Healthcare Sector in
21 [Interpretation] Now, Dr. Bagaric --
22 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have to say -- well,
23 first of all, I'd like to apologise to the Trial Chamber and the
24 Prosecution and my learned friend. There was obviously a mistake in the
25 interpretation, and the assistant -- our assistant was working on the
1 basis of the English version, but we needn't have done it this way. Had
2 the Stojic Defence been apprised of this mistake, we would have put the
3 mistake right and publicly apologised for the mistake. So quite
4 obviously there was a mistake in the translation, which led to further
5 errors being made. I'm sorry that that happened, and had somebody drawn
6 my attention to that, I would have put it right straight away.
7 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Dr. Bagaric, in view of what Ms. Nozica has just said, I have no
9 more questions regarding this document. I'd just like to say that I
10 thank you for the explanations and that it was, indeed -- and that had it
11 only been a translation mistake, we would have let our colleague know,
12 but as this is contained in the statement of reasons in the motion and
13 signed by Nozica, I did not have time to alert counsel -- lead counsel to
14 this. So it wasn't just a simple mistake, and I apologise if I
15 misunderstood the whole episode.
16 A. May I say something with respect to this report, Your Honours,
17 because I think it's important. We've discussed the subject at length
18 today, but nonetheless I think what I have to say is important. So might
19 I be allowed to do so? Do I have your permission?
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, unfortunately you're
21 here to answer questions asked by the counsel. Fine.
22 I'm just telling Ms. Alaburic that she's already used up 52
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Counsel, microphone.
1 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours, for that
2 information. Yes, I'll get through my cross-examination very quickly.
3 Q. Doctor, talking about the detention centres today, you said
4 something that was particularly important for the Petkovic Defence, so
5 I'm going to ask you to explain what you meant. Did you really say that
6 and mean it or did you misspeak? And it was on page 13 of today's
7 transcript, lines 21 to 25, and page 14, lines 1 to 2. Dr. Bagaric, you
8 said -- well, you roughly said that the instructions about conduct in the
9 detention centres in Croatia, you say, and I quote, that doctors within
10 the units which supervised those centres, and in English this was
11 recorded as "units and military districts to which these centres
12 belonged." You went on to say, Dr. Bagaric, that you don't know whether
13 the Heliodrom was under the authority of the Defence Department or not.
14 Now, did I summarise your statements correctly today about this,
15 on this subject?
16 A. Do you want me to answer the first part of your question or the
18 Q. Both. We have two elements.
19 A. I said what I said, and I stand by that, and I can repeat that
20 now. Yes, I allow for the possibility that I might have added a few
21 words, or I know that everything is weighed up to the extreme here, so I
22 might have made a mistake, but not intentionally, because the nuances are
23 very slight. And my testimony five years ago, for example, if you look
24 at that, when I was here and said what I said, I answered questions from
25 the Prosecutor, and I was completely unprepared for the questions that he
1 asked me, because I was told on the occasion that I was speaking -- that
2 I would be testifying to the general circumstances. And then
3 unprepared -- and what do I mean when I say "unprepared"? It means that
4 a lot of time has gone by, and with the passage of time, I can't remember
5 all the details. But what I did remember, I stated on the occasion,
6 that's what I stated here now, and it is this: As a rule, as a rule, I
7 repeat, for individual prisons, or detention centres, or whatever, or
8 isolation centres, whatever they were called, health protection was
9 provided by doctors from that military district or from individual
10 brigades belonging to that district, together with the physicians who
11 were detainees incarcerated within the centre.
12 Now, later on, with the passage of time, as time went by, along
13 with our support, and when I say "our support," I mean the specialist
14 support provided by Dr. Curic, and I hold that they did their job well,
15 as applied to health protection.
16 Q. Dr. Bagaric --
17 A. I apologise. I owe you something.
18 Q. We'll come to that.
19 A. I owe you my question [as interpreted] about Heliodrom.
20 Q. We'll come to that. It arises from what you've just said that
21 now you have worded your thesis a bit differently from what you told us
22 before, and now that you're saying that the healthcare was provided to
23 the detainees by the health service of the unit that belonged to the
24 area; is that what you said?
25 A. Yes, from the military unit.
1 Q. Yes, from the military unit that belonged to the area?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Is it the right conclusion that you're actually not saying or you
4 don't want to say that that military unit managed or controlled that
5 detention centre?
6 A. Exactly, I don't want to say that, because I don't know who
7 controlled and managed that centre, and it really doesn't matter when it
8 comes to the healthcare services provision, which is the only thing that
9 interested me at all in this whole story.
10 Q. I'm satisfied with your answer. I was ready to go deeper if your
11 answer was any different. Just one more question that I promised my
12 learned friend Scott.
13 Mr. Bagaric, when you mentioned your visit to -- which is
14 recorded on page 53 of the transcript, you said that to your greatest
15 satisfaction and the satisfaction of the everybody else in the group, it
16 was established that there had been no crimes committed against the
17 civilians in Sovici and that this was confirmed by the Muslims who were
18 isolated in the school in Sovici. Did I understand your words properly?
19 A. Yes, in general terms that would be the correct interpretation of
20 my words, of what I said. However, if the Trial Chamber wants to know
21 more, I can go on and say something more.
22 Q. This is going to be the topic of the Defence case of
23 General Petkovic. When you said that, did you mean that among the
24 civilians, there had been no killed, wounded, or sick, and that there was
25 no need for you or any of your colleagues, health professionals, to take
1 any measures or to take any procedures; is that what you meant when you
2 said that there had been no crimes committed against civilians?
3 A. No, this is not what I meant, this was not my line of thinking.
4 What was my line of thinking? As I sit here today, I can't say that no
5 civilians were ever wounded there. I really don't know that. However,
6 the Bosniak side, Your Honours, voiced a lot of objections, vis-a-vis
7 Mostar, about the rape of women in Sovici, the killing, the mass murders,
8 and all the hardships and so on and so forth. What they were saying was
9 this, You want to go to Kostajnica, where we did what we did, and they
10 knew what we had done. At the same time, they asked from us to allow
11 them to go to Sovici, and they accused us of doing things there. I
12 really didn't know at the time whether things had been done or not, and
13 when we arrived in Sovici, and when we went there together, Mr. Petkovic
14 and Mr. Halilovic, we got to the school and then we saw people there who
15 were incarcerated in that school, but there was no -- the extent of the
16 crime that was implicated, which was confirmed by the civilians and which
17 we were able to establish, and it made me happy to establish that. And
18 on that occasion, I noticed a great deal of dissatisfaction on the part
19 of the Bosniak Muslims who were incarcerated in the school, but that was
20 addressed at Halilovic, because the way they were talking to him was, You
21 promised us help, help never arrived, and I believe that they meant in
22 military terms because some soldiers had been killed there.
23 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Mr. Bagaric, I would like to thank
24 you. We will continue during General Petkovic's case.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We'll see about that.
1 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this completes my
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [No interpretation]
4 --- Recess taken at 5.44 p.m.
5 --- On resuming at 6.10 p.m.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing resumes, and
7 I think it is D3 now.
8 MS. PINTER: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Cross-examination by Ms. Pinter:
10 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Dr. Bagaric.
11 A. Good afternoon.
12 Q. First of all, let's wage a little war. I'm going to take you
13 back to 1992, to October 1992. Let's talk about Jajce and the evacuation
14 of the wounded and the sick and civilians from Jajce at the moment when
15 Jajce was about to fall. You've already spoken about that in answering
16 my learned friend Nozica's questions. This was on page 38 and also on
17 page 50.
18 First of all, let me ask you this: In the chief examination, you
19 said that the evacuation of civilians, the wounded, the women and the
20 children, was done by armoured buses?
21 A. There was one or two, not many.
22 Q. I did not mean -- I did not have in mind any quantity. So you're
23 saying one or two buses?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Where did the armoured buses come from?
1 A. This was a time when things were very hard and the wounded had to
2 be evacuated. I suppose that the Trial Chamber doesn't know what Jajce
3 looks like. It's a gorge some ten kilometres long, and it was impossible
4 to evacuate.
5 Q. Please, could you slow down, because things have to be recorded.
6 A. It was impossible to evacuate the wounded by any other means. We
7 could not use helicopters because we did not have any. It had to be done
8 by road, and the road that we had to take, we -- me and my colleague
9 doctors, it was some 20 kilometres long through that gorge, and there was
10 a threat of people being killed or wounded, and that's why we turned for
11 assistance to General Prodan in the Republic of Croatia. I knew him
12 personally. And then I believe that he and some other people -- I don't
13 remember any details. I believe that Mr. Praljak also participated in
14 requesting that assistance. We were provided with the vehicle, and we
15 used the vehicle to evacuate the wounded, the civilians, and the
16 soldiers, both Bosniak, Muslims, and Croats.
17 Q. Thank you. This is what I wanted to hear. We are going to go
18 through the documents which are in the sequence that I will be using
19 them. Before we tackle documents, I would like to ask you something
21 You also mentioned Dr. Kolak on examination-in-chief.
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. I would like to ask you this: Do you know that in the operation
24 that took place in Jajce, and within the framework of the Medical
25 Service, Dr. Gveric was very active?
1 A. Yes, that's correct.
2 Q. There was also Jadranko [as interpreted] Barisic?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Dr. Josip Barisic?
5 A. He was a doctor in Jajce.
6 Q. Very well. And now could you please look at document 3D01238.
7 It says here Dr. Josip Barisic?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. This is the doctor that you've just mentioned?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. This is his report in which he requests urgent evacuation of the
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And now I would ask you to turn to the next document.
15 A. Help me, for God's sake.
16 Q. It's 3D02819.
17 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers not overlap, please.
18 MS. PINTER: [Interpretation]
19 Q. You're saying that there is a cry for help because the situation
20 was difficult?
21 A. Yes, it was a cry for help because they were seized with
22 uncertainty, the doctors and everybody. The times were really very
24 Q. When I'm waiting, I'm waiting for the answer to be recorded. I
25 don't want us to overlap. Yes, I agree that that was indeed the case,
1 and this transpires only too well from the document.
2 And now could you please look at the following document, 3D02819.
3 The document is addressed to Major Ivo Prodan. Dr. Bagaric, is that you?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Dr. Markunovic in Travnik?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Dr. Dzambas in Novi Travnik?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And Dr. Saric in Tomislavgrad?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Again, this did Dr. Josip Barisic's report; is that correct?
12 A. Yes, it is.
13 Q. What is it that Dr. Barisic is saying in this report? Again,
14 this is a cry for help, is it not?
15 A. It's solely post festum, yes.
16 Q. So this is a statement that the doomsday or the judgement day has
17 taken place. Can you please now look at 3D03527. Look at the second
18 page of the document.
19 A. I can see it.
20 Q. Is this your signature?
21 A. Yes, it is.
22 Q. Did you draft the document? You did, I suppose.
23 A. Yes. If this is an integral document, and I believe it is, then,
24 yes, I did.
25 Q. You did. And you submit a report to the head of Defence,
1 Mr. Bruno Stojic?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. About what?
4 A. About the evacuation of the wounded from Jajce which was taking
5 place, and this is what it refers to. I can't remember the details at
6 the moment, but I know, in general terms, what the report is about.
7 Q. And you were the one who drafted it?
8 A. It was either me, by myself, or together with somebody. I signed
9 it, and I am responsible for it, of course.
10 Q. An integral part of the document is the following report on the
11 following page. Is the handwriting at the bottom yours?
12 A. Yes, it is, it is my handwriting. I laughed because I don't
13 understand where you got this paper from.
14 Q. It's an integral part of the document, is it not?
15 A. Yes, it is.
16 Q. Very well. We have now completed the story of Jajce, which was
17 when Jajce fell on the 22nd of -- 29th of October, 1992. You have spoken
18 about the Medical Service, and I would now kindly ask you to look at
19 document 3D03528.
20 A. Yes, I see it.
21 Q. The title is "Medical Report"?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Who was it who issued such reports?
24 A. I believe that this was drafted in the Operations Zone of
25 South-Eastern Herzegovina, the medical service of the operations zone,
1 and I believe that this was done by the doctor. Let's not go over the
2 same ground again. Let's just say that he was in charge of medical
3 services in the operations zone.
4 Q. Very well. And again he sent that report to you?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Also to the head of the Medical Service, Dr. Burkic [phoen],
7 and the commander of the operations zone in South-East Herzegovina?
8 A. Yes, the military commander.
9 Q. And this is a report about Operation Bura?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Can we see from this document when the preparations for operation
12 Bura actually started?
13 A. On the 22nd of October, 1992. I believe that's that.
14 Q. So the report was sent. The operation was already underway, and
15 these are the [indiscernible] of the operation that was underway?
16 A. Yes. What was typical of this operation was the fact that
17 unfortunately, according to what I know and remember, ended in a very
18 unfortunate manner, when it came to the HVO, because the commander,
19 Mr. Simovic, got killed, and this is what I remember the most. I believe
20 that we suffered a lot of losses, and I believe that you can see that in
21 the document.
22 Q. Yes, you can see that in this document. Can we then conclude
23 that -- or, rather, first of all, can you tell us where the Operation
24 Bura or Tempest was taking place, for the Trial Chamber and the other
25 sides in the proceedings?
1 A. I was personally not engaged in this operation, but I know that
2 this operation took place during the war against the Serbs.
3 Q. This means that Croats and Muslims, Bosniaks, were together?
4 A. Yes, absolutely.
5 Q. Can we then agree that this was in the south, that it was around
6 Storac [phoen], Dobroskavis [phoen] Plateau and Podvelezje?
7 A. Yes. You see that the commander of Medical Department, Edin
8 Obradovic, which confirms exactly what you have just said.
9 Q. What do you mean by that?
10 A. He's the one who signed that document.
11 Q. And he's a Bosniak, is he not?
12 A. Yes, he is. I suppose so, judging by the name.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers please not overlap once
14 again, please.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Edin Obradovic could be a child
16 from a mixed marriage, but in any case his name is Muslim.
17 MS. PINTER: [Interpretation]
18 Q. If we follow the list, we can see that the dead and wounded were
19 both Muslims and Croats and that they had fought together; wouldn't that
20 be correct?
21 A. Yes, absolutely.
22 Q. Thank you. When you mention Mr. Bozan Simovic, which is on the
23 last page of this document, it says here the names of the killed,
24 Bozan Simovic, this is a report of the 1st Herzegovina Brigade?
25 A. I can't see that.
1 Q. Go to the last page of the Croatian text.
2 A. Yes, but because he was the symbol of an honest and courageous
3 soldier, one unit bears his name, and I believe that the barracks also
4 bear his name.
5 Q. Yes, you're right, the barracks also bear his name. We're going
6 to skip the following document because my learned friend Senka has
7 already dealt with it. It is about the ambulance that was given to
8 Sally Backer. We'll now move to document 3D03525, which is a story which
9 was published in the professional magazine "Lancet." Are you familiar
10 with that?
11 A. Yes, absolutely.
12 Q. What can you tell us about this article? It was authored by
13 Richard Horton. Do you know who he is? And there is a reference to you
14 in this article.
15 A. This is a very, very valuable article. At least it's important
16 to me. It was published in one of the most influential and the most
17 quoted, as the Trial Chamber certainly knows, medical magazines.
18 "Lancet" is a very well-known magazine, next to the British Medical
19 Journal, is one of the most influential medical magazines. The
20 editor-in-chief of "Lancet," Mr. Richard Horton, toured the area after
21 the war, and he spoke to some of the doctors that had been engaged during
22 the war in Croatia and in Bosnia-Herzegovina as well, and that's why he
23 published two articles. You have just one here. The title is "Imprints
24 of War in Bosnia and Croatia." There are two articles, and one refers to
25 Croatia and the other to Bosnia-Herzegovina. In this article, he
1 actually speaks about doctors and how they have to be far-sighted and
2 look in the future. This is what I tried to tell you yesterday, and I
3 probably bore you out with that, but this is what I always firmly
4 believed. I still believe it. He quotes Nietzsche and he finishes the
5 article on that note. He says that the doctors are the ones who have,
6 during the war -- think differently, behave differently, and then analyse
7 the behaviour and the experience. And based on their experience, they
8 have to improve humanitarian knowledge for the future, help with the
9 prevention of war as a phenomenon, as an evil phenomenon.
10 Q. A reference is made here to the document that you drafted
11 together with Ms. Nozica, which is your letter to UNPROFOR asking for
12 points to be set up. This is mentioned in the introduction of the
13 article, your attempts and your desire to do something. You didn't draft
14 it with Ms. Nozica, but you talked about it with her?
15 A. This is what the doctors heard. They heard about our activities,
16 the activities that we participated in, and that's why he wanted to talk
17 to me, and I showed him a copy of that document. I had it on me because
18 I was working on my Master's thesis, themed [as interpreted] around the
19 organisation of the medical care of the HVO. He deemed the document very
20 important, and I'm very, very grateful to him for having quoted that
21 document in his article. And as a matter of fact, he bases the article
22 on that document.
23 Q. I would like to draw your attention to one more sentence. I know
24 that you are not going to find it easy to talk about it, but still I
25 believe it's important to talk about this. Mr. Horton says that on the
1 12th of April, 1992, your brother was killed, and although he was killed
2 as a result of Serb shelling in Surica [phoen], that you never blamed the
3 Serbs; you blamed the war for everything that happened.
4 A. Of course, this is an event that made a very big impression on
5 me, when something like that happened, when you yourself become a victim,
6 then everybody's hardship becomes your own hardship, and you are able to
7 empathise with people better and you are able to forgive more. Of
8 course, it has made a huge, big impression on the rest of my life.
9 Q. And now let's go to document 3D03526.
10 A. I'm especially proud of this article, especially proud of this
11 article which was published in the "Military Medicine," the leading
12 magazine which deals with war or military medicine, and that's very
13 important. However, even more important for me is the fact that the
14 signatories of the article are myself and Professor Reuben Eldar, or the
15 other way around, Professor Eldar and myself, and Professor Eldar is the
16 best expert on military medicine. He is a specialist in public
17 healthcare and my mentor, so it is my great honour that I had an
18 opportunity to meet this person and to author such an important
19 publication in such an important magazine.
20 Q. You know that our time is very valuable. I still need to ask you
21 something about the article. I can't quote all of it. However, in one
22 part of the article, a reference is made to the routes of evacuation of
23 the wounded and sick by air, by road, and by the sea, and in one part it
24 is said that the only possibility of air-lift and air evacuation was to
25 Central Bosnia because that was the only part of Bosnia where a
1 helicopter could land and take off from?
2 A. One of the way -- elements of the efficiency of the service is
3 the speed of the time in which you can reach wounded or sick, and the
4 second element is whether they can be treated. My dear colleagues in the
5 field, within the first hour, did manage to reach the sick and the
6 wounded and provide them with first aid, even bring them to hospitals.
7 However, it was also important, after that, what to do after that. For
8 example, the hospital in Bila was a hospital which was not equipped for
9 final treatment, and that's why the helicopter flights were very
10 important, and that is why the gentlemen who were present here, there is
11 almost not a single one who did not participate with their support, with
12 their approval for such flights that served to transport the wounded.
13 And the story about the dear lady Sally Backer is of the same
14 kind. She wanted to help the Muslims on the east bank, but she realised
15 that the Croats in Central Bosnia had a similar if not a bigger problem,
16 because nobody paid -- no media paid so much attention to them, and that
17 is something sometimes very important, and that's why she carried out the
18 helicopter evacuation. She had been instrumental during the period of
19 time when we could not carry out evacuation. She was the one who was
20 instrumental in that.
21 Q. Can you remember the names of any of the pilots who drove the
22 helicopters or is that too much to ask 16 years on?
23 A. Well, yes, I do remember one in particular, because he had an
24 interesting name. His name was Mr. Yugoslav. And I also remember the
1 Q. Natalija?
2 A. Well, him, too, but I had somebody else in mind. I know the man,
3 but I just can't tell you the name just now.
4 Q. I'm going to ask you something else about this article and then
5 one more document, and that will be it.
6 In that same article, which doesn't seem to be -- the pages of
7 which don't seem to be numbered, but before the section dealing with the
8 different aspects of the operation or mode of operation, you said, and
9 you said that during the examination-in-chief today, that the Medical
10 Corps was formed before the brigades?
11 A. That's right.
12 Q. You say that in this article, too, don't you?
13 A. Yes, and that was a phenomenon of sorts. We did it in comparison
14 to what the Israelis did in their wars and how some other people
15 organised this. We made this comparison, comparative analysis, and in a
16 way it is a phenomenon of sorts, but it was in fact the result of an
17 impossible situation that we found ourselves in in Bosnia and
18 Herzegovina, the Croats there.
19 Q. Yes, I agree. And apart from that, you say that the Medical
20 Corps did not become the official part of the military staff, that they
21 were two bodies, two separate bodies, which necessarily cooperated
22 closely, but that within the HVO they were at the same level, they had
23 the same level, the same hierarchal level, and that was the phenomenon in
24 military medicine?
25 A. We're talking about -- yes, that's true, that's quite true, and
1 we're talking about the time when I, in formal terms, was appointed chief
2 of the Main Medical Corps, and at the same time the Main Staff of the HVO
3 didn't exist yet. It might appear strange, but that's how it was. And
4 then by appointment of the Chief of Staff, we maintained this high level
5 independently with the Medical Corps being put -- established, and with
6 the Ministry coming in, everybody took their own part. So that is my
7 answer that I tried to give earlier on.
8 Q. I'm now going to ask you another question. It is this, a
9 practical question, so that we can understand what's going on here: A
10 doctor, in war --
11 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel repeat her question?
12 MS. PINTER: [Interpretation] Yes.
13 Q. What I was saying: A doctor in Rama drinks every day, is not
14 near the brigade. He doesn't pay attention to whether they have enough
15 medicines, sanitary material, and so on. He refuses -- he's unkempt,
16 he's not properly washed and combed, and he refuses to examine a patient.
17 What happens?
18 A. Well, I don't know of any such person, but if he was in a war
19 hospital, then the commander of the war hospital will call him up, and it
20 was linked to our service, the service that saw to the care of the
21 wounded. But if he was in a brigade, then the brigade commander would
22 call him to task, and he can --
23 Q. Can he replace him?
24 A. Yes, of course.
25 Q. When the brigade medical corps was established?
1 A. Yes. But until that happened, we had the heads of civilian
2 medical centres who took over the role, who took that role over from us
3 or, rather, from the Main Medical Corps. They were head of the municipal
4 staffs. So that was the very beginning of the beginning, and it was a
5 primitive type of organisation in the sense of establishing both the army
6 and the medical corps within it, and that's why it was quite special,
7 because we had special circumstances. And during the war, we were left
8 without any communication with the large medical centres, so we had to
9 rely exclusively on what we doctors call primary healthcare, that level;
10 that is to say, the doctors who were in the health centres. There were
11 no surgeons in those health centres, there were no anesthesiologists,
12 because that's not where they worked, and the few surgeons and
13 anesthesiologists we had, we had one anesthesiologist, they worked in two
14 hospitals, in Mostar and in Livno, and many people had already left. So
15 we were facing a very, very difficult situation.
16 Q. Yes, we are aware of that. Now, I'm going to ask the usher's
17 assistance, and we'd like to look at 2D00412, the next document, please.
18 A. Do you mean in this binder?
19 Q. No, not in my binder, but it was a document that came up during
20 the examination-in-chief. It is your order dated -- I'll give you the
21 date in just a moment. The date is September, the 28th of September,
23 A. I can see that.
24 Q. And the same document is 2D00131, but that's the 26th of
25 November, 1993, but we're going to deal with the first one. First things
2 So would you turn to page 2, please. In English, it is also on
3 page 2, and the English document is three pages long. And I'm going to
4 ask you, first of all: Who was this document sent to? Or, rather, would
5 you agree with me that the document was not sent to the Main Staff of the
6 HVO, this particular order?
7 A. That's right, it wasn't sent to the Main Staff.
8 Q. Can you explain why?
9 A. As we are addressing the units here, the units on the ground, and
10 all those who can influence changes in the field of healthcare or
11 whatever, and those elements that could have an influence on health, but
12 weren't under doctors' orders, for example, food, equipment, clothing and
13 so on for the people, we are addressing the commanders of the operative
14 zones. The commanders of the operative zones, that's who we're
15 addressing here as military organs, military formations, who can have
16 direct links to the brigades, because there were doctors there who were
17 involved from inside.
18 Q. But the Main Staff knew nothing about this; right?
19 A. According to this and -- they needn't have known about this order
20 of ours.
21 Q. All right. Now let's take a look at point 14. It says for -- as
22 far as the organisation of the work of the medical check-points is
24 "The heads of the Medical Corps of the HVO brigades are directly
25 responsible to me, as are the wardens of the mentioned centres."
1 So you compiled this order, and who was responsible if this order
2 was not put into practice? Who was held responsible, and to whom were
3 they responsible?
4 A. Here I state that -- well, I didn't have time to elaborate this
5 document, but, anyway, after gaining an insight into the situation and
6 having talked to the doctors who were there, we saw that there were
7 problems, and we sized up the situation and wanted to improve it, to do
8 what we could to improve it. So we set up medical corps posts or --
9 posts, yes, and people who were in charge of the medical side of matters,
10 and here I say the heads of the centres, the wardens of the centres.
11 That was a little too ambitious, I feel, but that's what it says on this
12 document. And, anyway, there were a lot of areas that were not strictly
13 medical, but that did have an effect on health, such as food, clothing,
14 for people in the centre, and that couldn't -- problems of that kind
15 couldn't be resolved by the doctor.
16 Q. It regarded a broader area?
17 A. Yes, logistics in general terms, any logistics.
18 MS. PINTER: All right. I have no further questions, and that
19 completes my cross-examination. Thank you.
20 Thank you, Dr. Bagaric.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too.
22 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I'd just like to apologise. I would
23 like to say that on page 96, line 13, the witness said it's logistics of
24 the operative zone, the brigade on any logistics, so the witness can
25 confirm that that's what he said.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, logistics, as such, per se.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, earlier on the counsel
3 for General Praljak talked about 3D3526, which you drafted on the medical
4 unit during the war, 1993 to 1995. I carefully read that document which
5 you co-drafted, and you wrote, and that struck me, that according to the
6 statistics, 11 per cent of the wounded were taken to the military
7 hospitals, while for the sake of comparison, in the Sinai, I'm sure that
8 you are referring to the war between Israel and Egypt, over 50 per cent
9 were taken to military hospitals, and you talk about the mortality rate
10 among the wounded. And you said that in the Croatian military hospitals,
11 they ranged between 80 and 8 per cent, and you compare that rate to other
12 figures you had; for example, that of the Beirut American Hospital and
13 Israeli hospitals, and from that you draw the conclusion that this was
14 functioning well. I read this, and it occurred to me that we heard
15 witnesses on the East Mostar Military Hospital. And you know as well as
16 I do that this East Mostar Military Hospital had been established by the
17 BiH in order to treat the wounded from the Mostar front as well as the
19 We've also seen videos here. We could show you a video, but
20 let's not do that. And I had the feeling, viewing that video and reading
21 the document, that the mortality rate in East Mostar was definitely
22 higher than the 8 per cent of the Croatian military hospitals.
23 So in your paper, why did you not go into the question of the
24 East Mostar Hospital?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, Mr. President, the reason is
1 this: We were dealing with the Croatian medical bodies or health service
2 in Bosnia and Herzegovina and organisation within it, so I couldn't take
3 the question of the Mostar Hospital on the east bank because it didn't
4 belong to the HVO. This article refers to the Medical Corps of the HVO,
5 that's what it's about, and that's what I dealt with, and that's what it
6 says in its title. But you noticed full well that when, all things
7 considered, we were very successful in caring and treating our wounded,
8 but that was how it functioned overall at a general level. But, of
9 course, in each individual hospital, that wasn't always the case. For
10 example, in Bila, that wasn't what it was like. It was an average, a
11 generalisation, and this information was taken from papers published in
12 scholarly journals on individual hospitals and in individual hospitals.
13 Each of these institutions had their own journals and published their own
14 data. And you know this approach. It was a summary, a precis, but we
15 weren't able to deal with the Mostar hospital on the east bank because it
16 didn't belong to the Health Service of the HVO, and it wouldn't have been
17 believable, valid. Why didn't we deal with the Sarajevo hospitals? Then
18 we would have -- the paper would have been entitled "The Health Service
19 in Bosnia-Herzegovina." Here we only dealt with the Croatian part of
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine. Final question: You've
22 talked about Bila. I've read in a document, and I can't remember its
23 number, that this Bila Hospital served 200.000 inhabitants. This is what
24 the document states. In terms of, Doctor to population ratio, did you
25 have the feeling that the hospitals under Croatian control in
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina were not as well off as other hospitals in other
2 countries, or even hospitals in the BiH area? Was it a good ratio, a
3 not-so-good ratio? So can you comment on the ratio?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, yes, absolutely inferior.
5 Now, why? Here's why: Because -- well, not in all cases, the BH Army
6 had some hospitals, too, which were in some far-off place without any
7 possibility of communication, and hospitals like that then were similar
8 to the situation in Bila, but it's very important to mention here that
9 the large medical centres which existed in Bosnia-Herzegovina, such as
10 Tuzla - Tuzla's a big town with several thousand health workers - then
11 you have Zenica, another big centre, Sarajevo, they all remained on
12 territory that was under the control of the BH Army, and they already had
13 their hospitals, hospitals that had been opened before the war both to
14 Serbs and Croats and everyone, and now suddenly they became inaccessible
15 to the Croats. We wouldn't have built a hospital in Bila had we been
16 able to go just a few kilometres away and use the Travnik Hospital, for
17 example, because Bila, in fact, was a municipality which belonged to
18 Travnik. They had a large hospital, a modern hospital there, which had
19 been in existence for many years, with an expert staff, well trained, and
20 compared to them our position was quite inferior.
21 And if I might be allowed to make my own observations, that's my
22 own opinion, I am convinced that those cries for help of ours, when we
23 asked that we work together in Mostar, that they were read by the army as
24 meaning if we accept that, there was no logic for blocking the inflow of
25 patients and staff and Croats who had until then been treated in the
1 hospitals under their control, and this would have contributed quite a
2 great deal to putting an end to the conflict and also to taking care of
3 all our people up there. So I do believe that they just let things stand
4 to see if they could take control of Central Bosnia, as that was a more
5 important goal than to deal with the question of the wounded Muslims and
6 Bosniaks on the east bank of Mostar. That is what I believe.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One final, final question.
8 We've heard witnesses about this, and the counsels also talked about the
9 departure of the JNA from Bosnia and Herzegovina, taking away all the
10 arms and ammunition, artillery, et cetera, and this question was never
11 asked to anyone: As far as you know, the military hospitals under JNA
12 control, when the JNA left, did they take away all the military
13 equipment, all the resuscitation material? Did they -- all the
14 equipment, did they take all that with them or did they leave everything
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Now, when it comes to
17 Bosnia-Herzegovina, then, as far as I know, that was only the case of one
18 particular hospital, and that was the hospital in Sarajevo, the former
19 military hospital there which I know very well, because I studied in
20 Sarajevo. It was a modern institution. And I think that later on, after
21 the war, when I worked in Sarajevo in the Health Ministry with the head
22 of the hospital, in talking to him, I heard that the hospital had been
23 emptied out. That's the expression he used. But I know full well that
24 in Croatia, in Zagreb, for example, and some negotiations and agreements
25 under pressure from the international community, they failed to do that
1 in the Zagreb military Hospital. But as to the other military hospitals
2 in Bosnia-Herzegovina, I don't think there were any, there were none.
3 What did exist were the large centres such as Banja Luka, Prijedor, and
4 so on, which remained under the control of the Serbian Army and, as such,
5 were not accessible to Croats, except during the war, once again, under
6 very strange circumstances when the Croats were in an open conflict, and
7 the Muslim Bosniaks as well, and the Croats had no choice. And then they
8 had to pay very dearly for their medical treatment, which was provided to
9 them in certain localities by the Serb side. For example, this was the
10 situation in Kiseljak, Zepce, and so on.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I almost forgot to ask D5
12 whether you had questions for Mr. Curic [as interpreted].
13 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
14 We have no questions for this witness. We would like to thank him for
15 coming to testify.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine.
17 MR. IBRISIMOVIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, no questions for
18 this witness.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Karnavas.
20 MR. KARNAVAS: No questions, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Prosecutor, we have another
22 three minutes. We're not going to give you the floor now.
23 Ms. Nozica.
24 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I just want to correct something on
25 page 101, line 7. The name of the witness was wrong there.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So I'd like to ask the
2 Prosecution again, are you going to start tomorrow?
3 MR. LAWS
4 do see the time.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] There's another three minutes
6 left, so it's better to start tomorrow. Fine, so we'll start tomorrow.
7 As you know, the hearing will take place in the afternoon, so,
8 Witness, please be back at 2.15 tomorrow afternoon.
9 I would like to thank everyone, and let's meet tomorrow
11 [The witness stands down]
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.58 p.m.,
13 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 22nd day of
14 April, 2009, at 2.15 p.m.