1 Monday, 7 December 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The accused Praljak not present]
5 [The witness takes the stand]
6 --- Upon commencing at 2.15 p.m.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, kindly call the
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 et
12 al. Thank you, Your Honours.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Registrar.
14 Today is Monday. Let me first greet the witness, Mr. Filipovic.
15 Good afternoon to the accused who are present. Good afternoon to the
16 Defence counsel, to Mr. Scott and his team, and all the people assisting
18 We are going to continue with the cross-examination. Mr. Scott,
19 I believe you have one hour and thirty minutes left. You may proceed.
20 WITNESS: FILIP FILIPOVIC [Resumed]
21 [The witness answered through interpreter]
22 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President.
23 Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon, Counsel, all those
24 in and around the courtroom.
25 Cross-examination by Mr. Scott: [Continued]
1 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Filipovic.
2 Sir, I'd like to finish with the topic that we were about to
3 close on Thursday afternoon. There was a pending question and then a
4 substantial amount of discussion among the lawyers in the court. But the
5 pending question to you at that time in connection with Exhibit P11131,
6 and I don't think it's necessary to turn there, it is the BBC article of
7 a Croatian new agency report. It's the one that we talked about on
8 Friday -- excuse me, Thursday, where the last statement that was
9 attributed to you and that was pending at the time was a statement that
10 you had made to this effect:
11 "To me, this is the third aggression [following Serbian and
12 Muslim] against Croats in Central Bosnia. This one is being conducted by
13 the international community."
14 The question that I put to you and was pending at the time that
15 we finished on Thursday was:
16 "That was your view at the time, that was your view, sir, when
17 you came to testify in the Kordic case, and that's your view today, isn't
19 A. Your Honours, I have given a great many interviews. I don't know
20 whether it was properly conveyed. I'm not quite sure I said "the third
21 aggression against the Croats." But knowing Ivica Santic, that is to
22 say, the accused, and knowing Pero Skopljak, another accused, as far as I
23 was concerned at that time, and ultimately Aleksovski, too, Blaskic,
24 Kordic, and I don't know who else -- anyway, it was a bit strange that
25 the first indictments to be raised for the territory of
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina [realtime transcript read in error "Republic of
2 Herceg-Bosna"] were raised for a defence which was the purest defence
3 that you could imagine; that is to say, for people to defend themselves
4 from an aggression and so on. So as I say, I'm not sure I used that
5 word, and to the present day I would not refrain from terms and
6 expressions when it comes to a group of accused.
7 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have an
8 intervention to the transcript.
9 In line 25 on the second page, it was recorded that the witness
10 said that this was the first indictment to be raised for the Republic of
11 Herceg-Bosna, but he said "Bosnia and Herzegovina." And I wanted to put
12 that right, "Bosnia and Herzegovina."
13 MR. SCOTT:
14 Q. Well, sir, you say that this involved what you called here "the
15 purest defence," but of course the Chamber will have in mind the
16 conclusions of this Tribunal in the Kordic case, the Blaskic case, the
17 Aleksovski case, and the Cerkez case, which may not have painted the same
18 picture that you've attempted to paint. You understand that, don't you?
19 A. Your Honours, I am talking about what I experienced, what I lived
20 through for three and a half years. I'm talking about a period of eight
21 months in a closed area, where not even a bird could fly in, an area that
22 we defended, and we defended exclusively the Croats. It was an area
23 which could be targeted by the Muslims. They could target each other,
24 shoot at each other, so that the defence was crystal clear, as pure as
25 the driven snow.
1 Q. Now, let's move forward to the role of the HVO in the structure
2 of what was happening during the events -- during this time, excuse me.
3 A number of questions were put to you in that regard by Ms. Alaburic.
4 Let's start with just some very basic facts.
5 The Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina was recognised as a
6 sovereign, independent state by the European Community on 6th April,
7 1992, and by the United States the following day on 7 April 1992;
9 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please. Just one
10 moment, please.
11 Your Honours, again we have a problem with the record on page 22,
12 23, where it says -- what it says there is quite unclear. The witness
13 uttered a sentence which it is difficult to translate. I understood what
14 it was about. Perhaps the best thing would be to have the witness
16 The witness said that the Muslim forces or Muslim soldiers
17 could -- and he used the word "prostrijeliti," and in that way "kill
18 each," so perhaps the witness could explain what he means by the word
19 "prostrijeliti," because this as it stands is not clear. I think that
20 would be a good idea, if the witness were to explain exactly what he
21 meant. Otherwise, we're not going to understand the translation as it
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can repeat. An enclave, the
24 Lasva Valley that was defending itself, was so small, so narrow, that the
25 Muslims on the one side could shoot at the Muslims on the other side, so
1 in that sense it was an entrance/exit sort of wound or passage.
2 MR. SCOTT:
3 Q. The question I had put to you, and which I'll now have to take
4 the time to put again: You would agree, sir, the Republic of Bosnia and
5 Herzegovina was recognised as a sovereign, independent state by the
6 European Community on 6th April, 1992, and by the United States the
7 following day on the 7th April of 1992; you have no reason to disagree
8 with that, do you?
9 A. I was proud that Bosnia and Herzegovina had been recognised as a
10 state and that I am today a general of the Army of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
11 Q. And, further, the new independent, sovereign state had an
12 internationally-recognised legal government in the BiH Presidency and the
13 BiH Government, and had sovereign, internationally-recognised territory
14 extending to all its international borders, didn't it?
15 A. Correct.
16 Q. And as a professional soldier, it would hardly be surprising to
17 you, would it, sir, that the new government of this new sovereign state
18 took immediate steps to establish its armed forces?
19 A. When the international community recognised Bosnia-Herzegovina,
20 the territory and the government, that was one thing, and the people that
21 lived there was the Serbs, the Croats, and the Muslims. But as far as
22 the question goes, it's correct.
23 Q. And you're aware, aren't you, at least generally, that on the 8th
24 of April, 1992, the BiH Presidency abolished the old Territorial Defence
25 under the former JNA system and put a new Territorial Defence in place,
1 which then some weeks later became the ABiH or Army of
2 Bosnia-Herzegovina; correct?
3 A. I don't know the exact dates, but I did know the commander.
4 Efendic was his name. I knew him personally, and he was --
5 Q. That really wasn't my question, sir, and I'll ask you to please
6 co-operate with me so that we can use our time today as efficiently as
8 You knew, sir, that immediately, essentially, on becoming a new
9 state, the government of that new state of Bosnia-Herzegovina took steps
10 to establish its armed forces, which were originally known as the
11 Territorial Defence, a new Territorial Defence; correct?
12 A. No, I didn't know about that, and I couldn't know about that.
13 What I did know was that measures were being taken to defend the country
14 because a pressure was exerted against it in the form of an aggression.
15 Q. Could you turn, please, to Exhibit 155, P00155. We're going to
16 look at two exhibits fairly quickly, and then I'm going to put some
17 questions to you. P00155, 155.
18 Can we have the assistance of the usher, please. 155.
19 If you'll look at that just to acquaint yourself with it. And
20 the Chamber has seen this and the next two documents a number of times.
21 I'm not going to spend a great deal of time on them. This is an order
22 issued by Mate Boban on the 10th of April, 1992, among other things
23 declaring that the HVO military was the only legal armed force on the
24 territory of Herceg-Bosna.
25 If you will look next, please, at P00195. It should be very
1 close following the one you were just looking at, P00195.
2 This was a very similar order, I put to you, for those who may
3 have time, if they haven't already done so, to compare the text from
4 Colonel General Ante Roso on the 8th of May, 1992, again saying at
5 number 1:
6 "The only legal military units in the territory of the HZ-HB are
7 units of the HVO."
8 Then I'll next ask you to turn, please, to P00200, which I again
9 think will be very close, P00200.
10 And likewise, sir, I would explain this document to you as an
11 order by General Blaskic, or Colonel Blaskic at the time, dated the 11th
12 of May, 1992, referring by number to Mr. Roso's order and essentially
13 ordering on down the line, so to speak, again number 1:
14 "The only legal military units in the area of Kiseljak
15 municipality are HVO units," et cetera.
16 Now, starting with Mr. Boban's order of the 10th of April, 1992,
17 can you explain to the Chamber any legal basis that Mr. Boban had to
18 issue such an order?
19 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, objection to this
21 This is a legal issue, and I don't think that it's a proper
22 question for an officer to be asked.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, Blaskic at this time
24 was under my command. That is to say, I was in the Lasva Valley and he
25 was in Kiseljak, and he issued this order, and I assume that it reached
1 him, although I don't know how. But I didn't receive an order of this
2 kind, nor did I hand it down to my subordinates, although at the time I
3 was the commander of the Regional Staff of Central Bosnia.
4 MR. SCOTT:
5 Q. It doesn't really answer my question, sir. You're a senior
6 commander. In fact, you just told us at the moment you were the senior
7 commander. You surely must have had some idea on the basis on which you
8 were exercising command. On what basis was the HVO military command,
9 under the leadership of Mate Boban, asserting at this time that the HVO
10 was the only legal military force?
11 A. In Central Bosnia, full command of the Regional Staff, it wasn't
12 Boban or Roso who appointed me. It was the situation in which I imposed
13 myself as commander. Why? Well, from the Presidency of
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, papers would go around, but what I had, my
15 inalienable right, then and at all times, was to defend people, the
16 population at that point in time, and to organise them as best as
17 possible, and that's what I did.
18 MS. TOMANOVIC: I'm really sorry.
19 [Interpretation] I'm going to have to ask the witness to slow
20 down, because half of what he said has not been interpreted. So could he
21 repeat that answer to this question, to speak slower, because I'm sure
22 the interpreters will become very tired before the end of today's
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it's probably my
25 temperament, and maybe it's the pressure on me all the time to ask me to
1 confirm something. He says I must confirm something all the time. I'm
2 being asked to confirm.
3 So I had to know, I had to take steps, and throughout the time I
4 did take steps. I did what I had to do in order to defend the people,
5 the population, the area in Central Bosnia. The papers that arrived or
6 that were sent off was something I wasn't interested in. I was
7 interested in reality, the situation on the ground.
8 Let me repeat, I wasn't appointed by Boban, or Roso, or anybody,
9 nor did I see any of these papers. It was a meeting of the
10 municipalities of Central Bosnia at which there were 12 municipalities
11 represented, because after that time Asko [phoen] was the commander, but
12 it was decided that I should be the commander at that meeting.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Slow down please, Mr. Scott.
14 MR. SCOTT: My apologies.
15 Q. That may or may not have been true in the first couple of days,
16 but you know full well that within a matter of days you were part of a
17 structure called the HVO, you had certain positions -- you were given
18 certain positions, Blaskic was appointed to certain positions, and you
19 know full well that was done pursuant to a structure that was then
20 referred to as the HVO; correct?
21 A. Yes, that was the structure of the HVO. Blaskic arrived there 20
22 days after me.
23 Q. Let's look at Mr. Roso's order, in particular, for a moment, item
24 number -- P00195, item number 2:
25 "All other military units in the above territory must join the
1 single defence system."
2 Now, why was that? What would be the purpose of Mr. Roso saying
3 all military units on the territory of the HZ-HB must join the single
4 defence system?
5 A. Because there were operations towards the HVO, in the sense that
6 it was illegal and didn't exist. Now, I personally was contacted by the
7 commander of the Territorial Defence Staff of Zenica, in which -- well,
8 on day 10 he said I was illegal, so he was legal and I was illegal. I
9 was at the front, establishing the front-line, whereas he was sitting in
10 Zenica. So this legal/illegal, lawful/unlawful, was a game that was
11 played all the time.
12 Q. You didn't answer my question, sir. Please, I would appreciate
13 your co-operation. Please listen to my question.
14 Roso says:
15 "All other military units in the above territory must join the
16 single defence system."
17 Why? Why must they all join the single defence system?
18 A. They accepted me as commander in the Lasva Valley in the first
19 few months of the war, into a united system of defence, because it
20 couldn't have been otherwise. So the Territorial Defence, that is to
21 say, people there in the field, and at the beginning, when the Mujahedin
22 arrived as well, they tolerated me and accepted me. It was a united
23 system of defence.
24 Q. Why did Roso say that all military units on the territory of
25 Herceg-Bosna had to recognise the HVO Main Staff as their "supreme
2 A. You'd have to ask him that, because you're asking me this for the
3 fourth time already, and I am telling you that there was a united defence
4 system. To establish a defence system, why united? Because in the area
5 there were units, weapons, people, and the structure of defence -- well,
6 the armature was the HVO and the Croats.
7 Q. Sir, we established last week and you still agree, don't you,
8 that the supreme commander of the HVO was the president of Herceg-Bosna,
9 Mate Boban?
10 A. Correct.
11 Q. So why would you say, sir -- why did Mr. Roso say, your superior
12 at this time -- and you said very clearly a few moments ago you were
13 accused of being an illegal -- part of an illegal military force. Why is
14 it that Roso would say that any military units on the territory of
15 Herceg-Bosna had to recognise essentially, in so many words, Mate Boban
16 as their supreme commander?
17 A. First of all, I don't know what territory of Herceg-Bosna this
18 was. It was never defined, although at least not to my knowledge.
19 Secondly, why Roso? I didn't know Roso at all, so as I say, I didn't
20 know him. And, thirdly, let me repeat, action gives rise to reaction,
21 and the action was that the -- only the Territorial Defence was the sole
22 force, and everything had to be subservient to that, and then this gave
23 rise to a reaction.
24 Q. So let me put it to you this way, sir: In Bosnia-Herzegovina at
25 that time, in April/May 1993, who was the supreme commander, Mate Boban
1 or the BiH Presidency?
2 A. Well, throughout Bosnia-Herzegovina, it was the Presidency of
3 Bosnia-Herzegovina. In the Lasva Valley, it was me, and nobody in
4 between, in the sense of arriving, an order arriving, information
5 arriving, weapons arriving, or anything linked to the defence.
6 Q. Roso's order number 3 says:
7 "Every member of the above military units must wear HVO
8 insignia ..."
9 You were familiar with that, weren't you, as the practice, as the
10 required practice?
11 A. It was only later that we managed to sew on the insignia and put
12 them on the members of the unit.
13 Q. Sir, on the 8th of May, 1992, Ante Roso ordered every member of
14 the above military units -- all legal units, according to him, on the
15 territory of Herceg-Bosna were required to wear HVO insignia. Now, did
16 you not testify in the Kordic case that the HVO insignia was "the
17 insignia of the Croatian people"?
18 A. The insignia of the Croatian Defence Council and the Croatian
19 people. And not only the people, but the HVO.
20 Q. Can you tell the Judges, please, what steps, in April, May, June,
21 July 1992, the HVO armed forces took to place themselves under the
22 command of the state of Bosnia-Herzegovina and its presidency?
23 A. The forces of the Croatian Defence Council were a function of the
24 defence of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Croatian people in
1 Q. That's not my question. You keep saying that, but tell me the
2 specific steps that the HVO armed forces took in April, May, June, July
3 1992 to put themselves under the command of the BiH Presidency of the
4 sovereign state of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Tell me specific steps that
5 the HVO took to do that.
6 A. What we undertook to do was that in the units and the area, we
7 took in all the population of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and the people from
8 Krajina, the refugees that were pouring in. We've already heard about
10 Q. What steps did you take, sir, to put yourself under the command
11 of the BiH Presidency, the HVO? It has nothing to do with taking in the
12 population of the Krajina. What steps did you take -- did the HVO take
13 to put themselves under the command and control of the BiH Presidency?
14 It's a very simple and clear question.
15 A. It is very clear that I didn't take a single step to place myself
16 under the command of somebody who cannot command, that doesn't have the
17 infrastructure to do so, somebody that doesn't have a built-up system for
18 that, for everything to function properly. I didn't take a single step
19 in that direction.
20 Q. In fact, sir, you knew full well -- you and the other HVO senior
21 commanders around you knew full well that the HVO had no intention, at
22 the time or after that time, to become a genuine part of a single unified
23 system under the command of the Bosnian Presidency? You had no such
24 intention ever, did you?
25 A. Today, in 1999 [as interpreted], that's what you say. We knew
1 nothing else but to survive. That's all we knew, how to survive.
2 Q. Sir, you're doing yourself a disservice. You're an educated man,
3 a professional officer. You know what I'm asking you, and you're
4 avoiding the question. I've asked you very specifically.
5 You said you were fighting for Bosnia-Herzegovina. You said
6 that -- a number of things that you've said, that, We were all part of
7 the same thing. And I'm putting to you, sir, you knew full well at the
8 time you had no intentions of genuinely putting yourself under the
9 command of the BiH Presidency. Now, that's true, isn't it?
10 A. Please, in the command, the regional Staff in Vitez, the
11 president, a member of the Presidency of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Boras,
12 I think he was, at least -- Boras, yes, he arrived, and in talking to him
13 I didn't gain the impression that I was illegal in any way and that I
14 shouldn't be doing what I was doing. Quite the contrary.
15 Q. Sir, the demands of the BiH government at the time, the documents
16 that the Judges have seen before, are very similar, really, in fact, to
17 what Mr. Roso was saying. Mr. Roso says, All military units operating on
18 this territory must joint a single defence system. So said the
19 Government of Bosnia-Herzegovina. If you're operating on our territory,
20 the territory recognised by the international community, you must joint
21 the single defence system. Likewise, Mr. Roso says in his view of the
22 world, You must recognise the HVO Main Staff as your supreme command.
23 And what the Bosnian government was saying, No, you must recognise the
24 Bosnian government as your supreme command.
25 Now, I put it to you, sir, the logic is the same, but you can't
1 have it both ways, you cannot serve two masters. There's one supreme
2 commander, and the HVO had no intention of submitting itself to the
3 command of the BiH Government, did it?
4 A. Your Honours, this something that the Prosecutor is claiming, Why
5 does this element, Herceg-Bosna or Bosna-Herzegovina -- why couldn't it
6 be Bosnia and Herzegovina? Everything that the Prosecutor is saying now
7 is the kind of thinking that somebody else had outside the territory in
8 which we were active.
9 Q. Sir, you know exactly what I'm asking you because you were
10 essentially asked the same question by Mr. Nice in the Kordic case.
11 Mr. Nice asked you this question:
12 "Picking up on what you said not so long ago, if you really
13 wanted to organise defence jointly, why not have one army, why have two?"
14 This the answer you gave, under oath, sitting in this same
15 building some years ago:
16 "We had three armies in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Army of Republika
17 Srpska, which separated and took up arms to reach their objectives; then
18 we had the Muslim side, which wore the green fezzes, had their own flags,
19 had their own insignia; then we had the Croatian component or party and
20 represented the interest of that side. And if you're talking about the
21 joint defence of Croats and Bosniaks, that is, Muslims, that was jointly
22 but not the same. At that time, we could not have had the same army.
23 That was a purely theoretical concept."
24 You could not have had the same army, according to your sworn
25 testimony in the Kordic case, sir. Now, do you stand by that today?
1 A. Today, the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina comprises the elements
2 that you have just enumerated.
3 Q. Sir, I'm talking about --
4 A. Back then --
5 Q. Sir, please, 1992 and 1993. Your position was and what you told
6 another set of three Judges some years ago, under oath, was that at that
7 time there could not possibly be one army, that each side had its own
8 army and they could not possibly be the same.
9 MS. TOMANOVIC: [Interpretation] Just one thing. If I could give
10 the Prosecutor a hand, to make sure you don't keep disagreeing with the
11 witness unnecessarily.
12 The witness started answering the question, but the interpreters
13 didn't have the time to interpret. If you have the time to wait up, you
14 will see that he was, indeed, trying to answer the question.
15 MR. SCOTT: Sorry, Counsel, but his question [sic] started with
16 "today," and I'm not talking about today. Unfortunately, I wish I had
17 more time, but as you know, we don't.
18 Q. Sir, you know full well what I'm talking about, and it would
19 behoove you not to play games on this. You're an educated man.
20 You testified to the Kordic Judges that there could not be a
21 single combined army with the Muslims; perhaps something jointly, but
22 could not possibly have had the same army. In your words, that was a
23 purely theoretical concept; correct?
24 A. Your Honours, maybe I didn't go to the same school as the
25 Prosecutor, maybe we weren't schoolmates, maybe I don't have the same
1 words that he has, but it is me testifying here and I'm telling you
2 exactly how it was. I'm not about to change my evidence. I said the
3 same thing nine or ten years ago at a different trial, and I'm still
4 saying all the same things.
5 Q. We'll turn next to the next couple of documents that were put in
6 front of you on this topic of the HVO and its status in relationship to
7 the Government of Bosnia-Herzegovina. I'm not going to pull these out
8 because of time, but I'll refer to the 20 April 1993 cease-fire agreement
9 which was shown to you, which is Exhibit P01988, and to the 25 April 1993
10 joint statement by Boban and Izetbegovic in Zagreb, which was P -- or is
12 Now, sir, both of those documents were put to you as including or
13 containing statements about the HVO being a legitimate part of the armed
14 forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina. I want to come back to that in a moment.
15 But to tie a couple of things together, because our time is
16 limited: You can confirm, can't you, that around the end of April you
17 joined this joint commission that you talked about, around the 28th of
18 April, 1993; is that right?
19 A. Yes, that's right.
20 Q. And you served on that commission until approximately the 10th of
21 June, 1993, when you returned to your duties with Colonel Blaskic in
22 Central Bosnia; correct?
23 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have an objection
24 based on the document that the Prosecutor is referring to. The joint
25 command was formed, not the joint commission.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the joint command,
2 yes, but it also operated as a separation commission. The first two or
3 three days until the joint command was appointed --
4 MR. SCOTT:
5 Q. My question is, sir -- my question to you, and I'm not going to
6 play word games with you now. My question is: You were on that
7 commission, that body, between the 28th of April, 1993, until the 10th of
8 June, 1993; correct?
9 A. I was on that body from the 20 -- the 21st, or the 22nd of April.
10 Q. And as I understand it, that joint commission did not meet again
11 after the 14th of April, 1993, because of the ongoing conflicts,
12 including what was happening at that time in Mostar; correct?
13 A. That's true.
14 Q. And, unfortunately --
15 A. I don't know that it did meet, at least.
16 Q. Unfortunately, sir, you would agree with me, wouldn't you, that
17 this commission had a very, very short life span, and unfortunately at
18 the end of the day there was no lasting peace or real improvements coming
19 out of that commission; correct?
20 A. Yes, that's correct. It went on for a very short time, had a
21 short life span.
22 Q. And tying this back in to those two documents and the two
23 exhibits I referred to you, sir, the 20 April cease-fire and the 25 April
24 joint statement, isn't it simply the reality, sir, those were statements
25 made in the course of the negotiations that ultimately didn't go anywhere
1 and really weren't worth the pieces of paper that they were printed on?
2 A. There was a lot of activity about the statements and about the
3 operation of the joint command throughout that month. Thousands of
4 persons were freed from some sort of detention on both sides.
5 Q. But ultimately within a few short days, sir, both sides were back
6 at killing each other, that the HVO was sending Muslims to the Heliodrom
7 camp. Basically, in a very short time, in the matter of a few days, the
8 war continued on; correct?
9 A. I know about the prisons and the prisons in which Croats were
10 detained. In Central Bosnia, Delic, Sefer and I --
11 Q. Sir, the war continued on, didn't it?
12 A. The war continued, yes, in the second half of May.
13 Q. And it's a bit like -- let me put to you, perhaps, the summary of
14 another professional soldier, such as yourself, and see if you can agree
15 with his assessment. There was a witness in this case who was an
16 international monitor named Bo Pellnas, and Bo Pellnas came to this
17 courtroom, and on the question of cease-fires and how many there were,
18 and there were so many, one cease-fires after another, and he said this
19 in his testimony:
20 "Well, after a while in these conditions, you know, you don't
21 take much notice of paperwork or oral statements. You wait to see what
22 happens. So you don't get, I would say, optimistic or pessimistic about
23 the announcements that a cease-fire has been signed. You wait and see
24 what happens before you make any evaluation of it."
25 And you would agree with that statement by Mr. Pellnas, wouldn't
2 A. He is a true professional, and his statement shows it.
3 Q. And, in fact, in your testimony last week you really expressed
4 the same sentiment. You said last Monday, in reference to questions put
5 to you by Judge Antonetti on the Constitutional Court, you said:
6 "All those documents, agreements, did not mean a thing for me,
7 when I spent hours every day being fired at."
8 At the end of the day, sir, what was said on paper really didn't
9 make much difference, did it?
10 A. There were negotiations throughout and combat as well going on.
11 Q. And at the end of the April, you agree, don't you, that when the
12 fighting broke out again and the joint commission went away, and the
13 cease-fire agreements went away, there was fault on both sides; Croats
14 were attacking, Muslims were attacking, there was fault on both sides,
15 and the process simply came to an end, didn't it?
16 A. I would change this the other way around. The Muslims were
17 attacking, the Croats were defending but also attacking.
18 Q. Sir, you testified in the Kordic case. You said:
19 "There was a big meeting in Travnik at the end of April.
20 Thebault was there, the European Union, others were there. The attacks
21 did not stop, not only from the Muslim side. I repeat that, in all those
22 incidents, because Croats were also participating in these incidents."
23 And in another statement a few pages later, you said you couldn't
24 lay the blame at the door of the Muslims, "but at Croats as well." Isn't
25 that what you said in the Kordic case?
1 A. At the meeting in Travnik, when Thebault was there, as soon as we
2 were out of that room Cuskic saved me when I was facing hundreds of
3 Muslim barrels. They wanted to kill me. Cuskic stood right in front of
4 them, unarmed.
5 Q. Sir, there was fault on both sides. You so testified in the
6 Kordic case on two separate occasions under oath. Are you changing your
7 answer now?
8 A. I'm not changing anything. I'm telling you that both sides were
9 provoking incidents.
10 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not understand the last
11 part of the sentence.
12 MR. SCOTT:
13 Q. The last document on the topic that I will ask you about, sir --
14 JUDGE PRANDLER: I'm sorry, Mr. Scott.
15 The interpreter asks the witness to repeat the last sentence. He
16 did not understand you, Mr. Filipovic.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Both sides were provoking incidents
18 and clashes throughout all of this until the Washington Accords were
20 MR. SCOTT:
21 Q. Finally, sir, on this topic you were shown a transcript of a
22 meeting of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the 29th of June,
23 1993, and you, in the courtroom, may recall it, because right at the very
24 beginning of the document, without any reference or quotation or any
25 other information that contained the statement:
1 "We recognised the HVO as a constituent part of the armed
3 The short answer on that document, sir, is you don't know
4 anything about it, do you?
5 A. Your Honours, from the very first day the HVO was part of the
6 armed forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The moment of the recognition
7 may have a legal significance, but de facto and de jure, on the ground
8 the same thing continued throughout.
9 Q. Well, sir, you said earlier you didn't know, because you said you
10 weren't bothered by such things. My question to you is: You don't know
11 anything about that document; you weren't in the meeting, you don't know
12 what was said, none of us in the courtroom, in fact, knows what was said,
13 we don't know who, if anyone, made that statement. We don't know what
14 it's about, do we?
15 Let me make it very clear. I'm talking about -- excuse me.
16 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Objection, objection, Your
17 Honours, objection.
18 Can Mr. Scott please give us the page number for the transcript
19 reference. What exactly did the witness say a while ago, because it's
20 difficult to keep going like this. It's difficult for us to monitor what
21 is going on.
22 We should also try to show how what the witness said in his
23 former testimony is being misrepresented. What we have on page 5, line
24 5, where Mr. Scott said that the witness said something earlier, can he
25 please specify what, when, as well as the transcript page number.
1 MR. SCOTT:
2 Q. Sir, you, in the courtroom, know full well that Ms. Alaburic put
3 before you a document 1D02664, which was a transcript of the meeting of
4 the Presidency, and everyone knows -- in the courtroom knows that I'm not
5 making that up. My point is a very simple one. That document was put in
6 front of you, but you don't know anything about either the document or
7 its content, did you, because you were not at that meeting and you can't
8 tell these Judges anything about what happened at that meeting, what was
9 said, or the outcome of that meeting; correct? It's a very simple
10 question. You simply don't know?
11 A. I don't know about the meeting or about the document. I know
12 nothing about it. The only thing I do know is what I read in the press,
13 in the printed media. I was also shown the document while I was being
15 Q. Well, did you read in the printed media, sir, about the
16 Constitutional Court decision that said Herceg-Bosna was illegal? Sir?
17 A. That was after the war. It was disclosed to me after the war.
18 But while all of this was going on, I knew neither of these two things.
19 Q. You voiced an opinion in response to a question by counsel about
20 whether Mr. Delic should be attending a meeting of the Presidency if
21 Mr. Petkovic was not also attending. Were you aware, sir, that the law
22 of Bosnia-Herzegovina during a time of war provided that the expanded
23 Presidency included the head of the armed forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
24 A. I didn't know that. But Delic had nothing to do at a Presidency
25 meeting unless Petkovic was there too.
1 Q. According to you. And can you tell us, by the way, how many
2 meetings of the HVO Defence Department, headed by Mr. Stojic, or how many
3 meetings of the HVO government, headed by Mr. Prlic, did any of the
4 senior Muslim military officers attend?
5 A. I can't say anything about that.
6 Q. None that you know of; correct?
7 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I really do have an
9 Of course not, he doesn't know anything about that. Of course,
10 the Prosecutor should first lay the foundation, Did you ever attend an
11 HVO meeting? Yes. Very well. Who was there? Were there any Muslim
12 soldiers there? No. Okay. If not, then he can't ask any further
13 questions. But my learned friend just breezes right through it, the
14 witness says, No, and then he draws whatever conclusion he likes. This
15 is entirely unfair. In a Croatian courtroom, I would be severely
16 reprimanded for that sort of practice.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I haven't asked any
18 question for 45 minutes. I let Mr. Scott freely conduct his
19 cross-examination. But given the last questions he put to you, I would
20 like to ask you something.
21 I would like first the Registrar to have document 1D2664, the
22 document mentioned by Mr. Scott, could we have this on the screen,
24 We have the text in English, and could we please have it also in
1 Very well, everyone has it on the screen. We have both
2 documents. The text in B/C/S is a transcription from a tape-recording.
3 Nobody has the tape-recording, unfortunately, but that's not where the
4 problem lies.
5 This is June 29, 1993, 1.30 p.m. The session is chaired by
6 Mr. Izetbegovic, himself. Mr. Scott told you that you did not attend
7 this meeting. Of course you didn't attend the meeting. Otherwise, your
8 name would be listed here. But we had a great number of witnesses who
9 came to testify on the presidential transcripts, and they did not attend
10 these meetings either.
11 But this being said, Witness, let's take a look at the first
13 "We recognise the HVO as a constituent part of the armed forces."
14 To me, I get the impression - maybe I'm wrong - but it seems that
15 Mr. Izetbegovic is chairing the meeting and is stating this, but his name
16 is not mentioned. Normally, his name should have been placed right
17 before the sentence, but that's not the case here. But, well, we might
18 assume that he is saying that. And then Pejanovic takes the floor, and
19 we see what he says, and then the president speaks again. The president
20 is, of course, Mr. Izetbegovic. He resumes what Pejanovic said and says,
21 and I quote:
22 "It says here that there is only one commander in chief of the
23 armed forces."
24 So to me it seems that Mr. Izetbegovic recognised that the HVO
25 was an element of the armed forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, but that
1 according to him, there are several commanders, because Pejanovic
2 actually took the floor right before him.
3 General, I'm sure you're well versed in all this. You told us,
4 you know, that you're a retired general of the Army of Bosnia and
5 Herzegovina. So when looking at this document, could you tell us whether
6 Mr. Izetbegovic officially told all members of the meeting that according
7 to him, the HVO was a constituent part of the armed forces of Bosnia and
9 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me, Your Honour.
10 Excuse me, Your Honour. I know it's -- I know it's not exactly
11 customary, but that's exactly the point of my question to this witness.
12 He can't possibly speculate to who said that. It doesn't say on the
13 record. The witness has said he wasn't there. He can't possibly say,
14 nor can the courtroom possibly say, who said [indiscernible] or made this
15 statement. It's pure speculation.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Scott, it is speculation,
17 yes, but when you're telling the witness that he is speculating, I'm not
18 speculating, myself. I have a document here on the screen.
19 MR. SCOTT: It doesn't say who made that statement, sir. It does
20 not say anything about who made that statement. Anyone drawing that
21 conclusion is purely speculating, anyone.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
23 Witness, I said that regarding the first sentence, we don't know
24 who uttered these words. It's true, and Mr. Scott has pressed that
25 point. But when reading the document, it seems that there is a
1 discussion on the topic, and Mr. Izetbegovic is actually taking part in
2 that discussion. So according to you, Witness, did Izetbegovic recognise
3 the HVO as a constituent part of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina or
4 did he not recognise that fact?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He recognises the HVO as a
6 constituent part of the armed forces of the Republic of Bosnia and
7 Herzegovina; no doubt about that. Nevertheless, he appointed Delic a
8 member of the BH Presidency, which could only happen in a duality with
9 Petkovic, and that is the whole point. The entire transcript -- or,
10 rather, a portion of the transcript is exactly about that. The HVO is on
11 an equal footing with the BH Army.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
13 Registrar, could we have page 2 of this document on the screen,
14 as well as the corresponding page in B/C/S.
15 Witness, take a look at Boras's intervention with the president,
16 Izetbegovic, taking the floor right after him. This is what Izetbegovic
17 says, and I quote:
18 "We can put the question of the status of the armed forces on the
19 agenda in the future, how to resolve the issue. We tried -- if you
20 remember, we wanted to resolve the matter with joint commands."
21 So military-wise, what did Izetbegovic mean, according to you?
22 He is actually taking the floor.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At the time, he was trying to say
24 that the joint command did not succeed, although attempts were being
25 made. At the time, had it not -- at the time, the joint command was not
1 there, at least not the way he imagined it.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One last question, and then I
3 will hand the floor back to Mr. Scott. He has 50 minutes left.
4 Very early on in this hearing, at 2.20, I think, Mr. Scott
5 started with the first document, the first document he showed you. We
6 don't have to look at it again, but it was a document signed by
7 Mate Boban. In this document, signed by Mate Boban, P155, on April 10,
8 1992, April 10, Mr. Boban says that the TO, which is a service of the
9 Serbo-Chetnik armada, does not exist for Croats in Herceg-Bosna, and he
10 requests for military units of the HVO to be created.
11 When you were in the field, and then after that all questions put
12 to you by Mr. Scott were quite relevant, and I would have put exactly the
13 same ones as he did, but there's one thing I would like to know. I would
14 like to know whether on April 10, 1992, the Territorial Defence existed
15 in Herceg-Bosna, manned by Muslims, including Muslims, or was there none,
16 and because there was none, Mate Boban took advantage of that void to say
17 where there's nothing exists, the Croats will set up these units?
18 According to your recollection, can you tell us whether there were units
19 of the Territorial Defence with a Muslim component?
20 Let me give you an example. Kiseljak, for example, we saw a
21 document shown to you by the Prosecutor where Blaskic is organising, so I
22 would like to know whether in Kiseljak there were Muslim units.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, at the time that we
24 are talking about there was no Territorial Defence. As such, it existed
25 back in Yugoslavia. At the time, the Territorial Defence had no weapons,
1 was not properly organised. It had fallen apart. The Serbs had left.
2 There are only files in certain municipalities; in other words,
3 Territorial Defence documents. The Territorial Defence was now to be
4 built back up, an army, forces to defend Bosnia-Herzegovina. The name,
5 itself, the TO, was no more but a name. In Kiseljak, there was the HVO
6 and an incipient TO or, rather, the BH Army.
7 When I arrived in Central Bosnia, I found a lot of armed
8 individuals, 90 per cent of them Croats. The Muslims had no weapons and
9 were not organised, in the sense of being able to put up resistance. It
10 wasn't before the second half of May or June that they were able to
11 perform any military activity.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
13 Mr. Scott asked you a question, and I would have asked the same
14 one. He asked you what you did, yourself, to come into contact with the
15 armed forces of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the armed forces of
16 the Presidency. And you answered by saying you did nothing. But there
17 was one additional question that he forgot to put to you, and I will put
18 it to you.
19 What did the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina do in order to come
20 into contact with you? Obviously, nothing was done between you and
21 Sarajevo, in that direction, but did something come from the other
22 direction? Because at one point in time you said, I met Mr. Boras, the
23 same "Boras" that we see quoted in this document which is on the screen,
24 so could you tell us what Sarajevo actually did in your direction? And
25 if it's Mr. Boras who actually contacted you, could you tell us what he
1 told you.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, Colonel Suvalic
3 arrived in Vitez. He was the head of the Territorial Defence of the
4 Zenica District already in Yugoslavia, and he said, "We're creating an
5 army, be the head of staff and we've resolved the whole issue." So
6 Colonel Suvalic has various files in the JNA garrison with the tanks and
7 so on and so forth, he still had all that. I had already resolved the
8 question of the garrison in Travnik, in the sense of me being a hostage.
9 But he went out, he was creating an army, he had some soldiers and some
10 units, and so I said, Well, establish an army and we'll go into battle
11 together. He couldn't still go into battle because he didn't have the
12 wherewithal, so I said, Set up your units and we can go into battle. And
13 it would have been easier for me, I said, to be Chief of Staff, but
14 that's not going to get us anywhere. So that was the relationship we had
15 with the Territorial Defence, but not Sarajevo. He didn't have any
16 connection with Sarajevo, either, when he was with me, at least not the
17 kind of connection and contacts for battle and so forth.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And Mr. Boras, what did he tell
19 you? You told Mr. Scott that you saw Boras. What did he tell you?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think Boras was there during
21 those days. There were a lot of events going on, but the basic thing is
22 that Boras said that in Sarajevo, things were becoming a little more
23 organised, and that when I informed him about what I was doing, a defence
24 line had to be set up, first and foremost, so that the Army of Republika
25 Srpska could not take control of any area that was not defended, that was
1 the basic thing, Jajce, Bugojno, Travnik and so on, and he said, Carry on
2 what you're doing, you're doing good. So there was nothing about
3 subordination, re-subordination, or things of that kind.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are telling us that
5 Mr. Boras was a member of the Presidency and said, Go on, it's very good
6 that way?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Scott.
9 MR. SCOTT:
10 Q. Sir, your own testimony has contradicted you, which is one of the
11 reasons I spent so much time on some of your testimony last week.
12 You said, under oath, just a matter of a couple of days ago, that
13 when you arrived in Central Bosnia things were disorganised, there were
14 few armed individuals, you had to establish the HVO, essentially, from
15 scratch. You also said that within a very short time, the Territorial
16 Defence was, in fact, larger, more powerful, and had more professional
17 officers than the HVO, by May or June. And you gave us the example, in
18 fact, by May, of 2.000 Muslim soldiers arriving in Central Bosnia and
19 becoming to you what you considered to be some sort of threat, in May
21 There was a TO, sir --
22 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I object. This is a
23 completely erroneous presentation of General Filipovic's testimony about
24 the moment he arrived in Central Bosnia, which was the 10th of April,
25 that general period, until June. This is a completely wrong
1 interpretation of what he said. Now, if Mr. Scott considers that he is
2 conveying the witness's testimony properly, then let him tell us the
3 pages of the transcript where he said that.
4 MR. SCOTT: I have absolutely no doubt that's exactly what the
5 witness said. And if he doesn't remember that, then I'll leave it to the
6 Chamber to review the testimony. It's exactly what he talked about, and
7 he said --
8 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour --
9 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me. I'm not going to have counsel dictate my
11 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I really do consider
12 that we should respect the Rules applied in this Tribunal during the
13 cross-examination, and could you please tell Mr. Scott that if he is
14 referring to the testimony of this witness, or is he referring to any
15 portion of the examination-in-chief or cross-examination by the Defence
16 counsel, that he could tell us what the pages of the transcript are,
17 because it is our right to check and see if the Prosecutor is correctly
18 interpreting the testimony of this witness or not. And the fact that he
19 is completely convinced that his interpretation is the correct one, I
20 have no doubt that even if Mr. Scott is wrong on certain points, that he
21 is wrong in good faith, but it is my task to point this out. And I'm
22 sure that Mr. Scott has noted down all the relevant pages of the
23 transcript, so can he just inform us what those pages are where the
24 witness said what he's saying he said?
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You're both right. Mr. Scott
1 does not have the exact transcript pages, so he can't give you the right
2 page number. He is right in saying that the Judges are going to check.
3 Of course they will. And you're right, too, because it would be better
4 to make sure there is no mistake, and if Mr. Scott refers to the
5 witness's testimony, he has to be precise. But we have the witness here,
6 we're lucky in that, so he can either say that Mr. Scott is right or tell
7 Mr. Scott that he's wrong. The only one who is able to settle the matter
8 without the transcript pages being shown is the witness.
9 Did you follow what has just been said, because Mr. Scott says
10 one thing, Ms. Alaburic says that she wants to have the right page
11 number? From memory, do you remember what you testified earlier, or, I
12 mean, if it goes back nine years, do you still remember what you said
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, not only nine years
15 ago, but three days ago. The Prosecutor is saying that I am not telling
16 the truth, that I'm not answering his questions, that I'm not being
17 precise enough, and so on and so forth. And as for the last question
18 that he put to me, it is one thing to talk about the 10th of April, and
19 it's another thing to talk about the 10th of April and my arrival in the
20 area, because I said exactly what I found. I said I came across many
21 armed individuals, but that wasn't an army, it wasn't an organisation
22 being put in place. And already at the end of May and the beginning of
23 June, and I said that as well, the Territorial Defence, with the arrival
24 of cadres from the JNA --
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Rest assured, I didn't fall;
1 just my binder did.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I even named names, when it came to
3 June 1992, from Lendo, Alagic, Cuskic, and all the others, not to have to
4 enumerate them now. The BH Army -- the Territorial Defence of BH Army
5 was stronger in terms of numbers than the HVO; in professional cadres, in
6 the number of troops, armed combatants, and so on, and it was increasing
7 in strength. And that's what I said.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Scott.
9 MR. SCOTT: Which is exactly what I represented, and accurately
11 And for one example, now that we've had the time, I refer the
12 courtroom and Ms. Alaburic to page 47652 of last week's transcript, where
13 the witness testified in April, May, June 1992, and in a very short
14 time -- and by May or June of 1992, the Muslim armed forces were larger
15 and had a larger professional officer corps. And I'm sure that can be
16 further checked.
17 Q. Further, in reference to questions put by Mr. President --
18 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, let me just say,
19 then, what the witness said applying to June 1993, he said was happening
20 in May -- I misspoke. I meant to say "1992," and once again it's being
21 wrongly interpreted by the Prosecutor.
22 MR. SCOTT: Your Honour, I'm not going to continue this process
23 of going back and forth and back and forth on what's being said or not
24 said and what I said. The transcript is very clear. I just gave one
25 example of the witness's prior testimony, when he was talking about
1 April, May, June of 1992, and it's exactly as I represented it at the
3 Q. Another question put to you, sir, by President Antonetti, in
4 terms of communications and the existence -- the existence of the TO, the
5 new TO, and communications from it, would you please turn to 1D00970,
7 If I can have the usher's assistance, please, so we can move as
8 quickly as possible.
9 Perhaps we can have it on the -- we do have it on the screen. If
10 we can just proceed that way, Your Honours. Both the English and the
11 Croatian version is on the screen.
12 Sir, if you can look on your screen, please? If you can look on
13 the screen, please, sir, this is the communication from the Jablanica
14 Municipal Assembly dated the 6th of May, 1992. The beginning part:
15 "At its meeting held on 6 May 1992, the Jablanica Crisis Staff
16 decided to organise a unified defence system for the Jablanica
17 municipality area and hereby issued the following:
18 "Announcement. All citizens of the Jablanica municipality are
19 hereby notified that a unified defence system is being organised in our
20 municipality and will consist of the Territorial Defence forces, the
21 Croatian Defence Council, the Green Berets, and all others who wish to
22 place themselves under the unified command of the Territorial Defence
23 headquarters in Jablanica."
24 Now, can you tell us, sir, after the 6th of May, 1992, what steps
25 did the HVO take to place itself under the unified command of the
1 Territorial Defence?
2 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Objection.
3 We're dealing with Jablanica municipality. Now, from the
4 testimony, the witness at that time was in Central Bosnia the whole time,
5 so how can the witness say what the HVO did in Jablanica or did not do?
6 MR. SCOTT: Well, how can he say what happened in a meeting that
7 he wasn't in attendance at?
8 Q. Sir, I might -- this is one example -- this is one example, and I
9 go back to -- the question came up, What communications from the TO? You
10 said a few moments ago the TO didn't exist in Herzegovina. You said so
11 under oath. Now, here's a document from the 6th of May, 1992, talking
12 about the Territorial Defence and trying to organise a unified defence
13 under a unified command structure, which you said the TO didn't exist in
14 Herzegovina. And I put this to you as one example, but I come back to
15 the question I put to you 45 minutes ago: What steps did the HVO take to
16 put itself under the unified command of the Presidency of
18 A. Your Honours, I never said that the TO did not exist in
19 Jablanica, which the Prosecutor has just said. I was just saying that in
20 the first days of my arrival in Central Bosnia, the HVO was stronger in
21 the sense of preparedness on the part of the population for defending
22 themselves against an aggression, because they'd already experienced
23 Vukovar, Ravno, et cetera. And the Muslims, thanks, among other things,
24 to the statement made by Alija Izetbegovic, when he said, It's not our
25 war, they were not prepared. So April and the first half of May was
1 the -- during that time, the only real force in the area of Central
2 Bosnia was the HVO. The Territorial Defence was being established. It
3 was looking for commanders, it found some commanders, and sometime in
4 June 1962 [as interpreted] was on an equal footing and stronger than the
6 Q. Sir, I'm going to turn to a different topic because the record on
7 this will quite clearly speak for itself, a question from last week. Let
8 me ask you that --
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment, please.
10 Witness, just in the wake of the Prosecutor's questions and
11 following this document of the presidential transcript of the Republic of
12 Bosnia and Herzegovina, isn't this the evidence that the municipalities
13 were required to set up a military system, gathering all those on
14 location? In Jablanica, it was the Green Berets and the Croats from the
15 HVO, but there could have been other types of systems? And the
16 interesting thing about this document is that the president of the
17 municipality says that this does not preempt on other political solutions
18 that may crop up later on, so does this mean that back in May 1992 -- so
19 from memory I believe that by then the VRS was being set up in the
20 Republika Srpska. There were in some municipalities some military
21 formations -- joint military formations being created, as shown by this
22 document shown by the Prosecutor?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, paper soldiers and
24 papers, there was a lot of that, and I see here at this Tribunal now that
25 there was a lot of that. Roso, Blaskic, the president of the
1 municipality. Papers were flying hither and thither. The problem was,
2 on the ground, to establish a defence.
3 Now, in the document that's just been quoted, the Jablanica
4 document, it says that the Green Berets ought to be unified, which means
5 that they weren't in the Territorial Defence up until that time, and that
6 the Patriotic League should be united and unified, and the HVO, too. So
7 that's what was said here. It says here what should be done with the aim
8 of realising an ideal situation, which this president says, whether he
9 received a piece of paper, a document to that effect, or whether he wrote
10 it himself.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Scott.
12 MR. SCOTT:
13 Q. I'm going to another topic, sir, and this is in connection with
14 the time that you've told us when you and Mr. Pasalic were -- stayed for
15 a time at the Spanish Battalion base near Dracevo. And I put it to you,
16 sir, that last week you went -- again, went out of your way to create a
17 false impression for these Judges, didn't you? And I'll tell you why so
18 you don't have to guess. You knew full well, didn't you, that the reason
19 that Pasalic was held and the reason that you couldn't enter Mostar at
20 the time was because the HVO wouldn't let Pasalic go anywhere else or
21 enter Mostar, and you knew that, didn't you?
22 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, objection to the
24 What is has the HVO got to do with Pasalic, when we had several
25 witnesses before this Trial Chamber testifying about the fact that
1 Pasalic was in an UNPROFOR vehicle, and how could the HVO do anything
2 with respect to people who were under UNPROFOR's protection? So I'd like
3 Mr. Scott to be more precise and say what he means exactly, because he
4 was thinking about the 8th to the 9th of May, 1993, then he has no
5 grounds, in fact.
6 MR. SCOTT: Well, that's something that's just not true. And the
7 witness said last week, and this -- I do have it from the 1st of
8 December, the daily transcript, pages 43 to 47 -- what this witness
9 ultimately said was, in answer to this question:
10 "So can you now, General, comment on this assertion made; was
11 that the truth or not about Mr. Pasalic being held by the HVO?"
12 And Mr. Filipovic gave this answer under oath last week:
13 "The route we followed passes mostly through an area controlled
14 by the BH Army, and I don't know how the HVO could prevent Arif Pasalic
15 from leaving the APC
16 And I put it to you, sir, that you did know exactly how because
17 you knew -- let me conduct my examination.
18 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I really have an
19 objection now. I think that I have been very patient in listening to
20 Mr. Scott, to see the way in which he is conducting his
21 cross-examination, and I hope that in redirect I'll try to illustrate
22 facts to the Trial Chamber, but this is a completely wrong interpretation
23 of the whole part of that testimony and examination of the witness. It
24 was very clear that the question related to the case -- the Prosecution
25 case that Arif Pasalic, on the 9th of May, 1993, was not in Mostar,
1 because the HVO would have prevented him from entering Mostar. That was
2 the Prosecution case. Now, we proved -- we showed that at the time he
3 was in an UNPROFOR vehicle. And if my colleague, Mr. Scott, now wants to
4 make any statements in that regard, let him present the question and
5 answer in its entirety, not to go halfway, because otherwise it would be
6 a completely erroneous depiction of what was happening in the courtroom.
7 So Arif Pasalic was in an UNPROFOR vehicle. He was going from
8 Jablanica to Dracevo. He was passing through East Mostar. And had he
9 wanted to leave the vehicle, he could have done that. And that's the
10 crux of the matter. The HVO couldn't control that.
11 MR. SCOTT:
12 Q. Can you turn, please, to P11138.
13 And I'm going to ask the usher assist us, please, and to please
14 stand by the witness so we can move as quickly as possible. My time is
15 really very limited.
16 P11138. This is a Spanish Battalion report. I refer you to --
17 it's in the next binder. Sorry, it's in the loose -- no, this one.
18 Sorry, which one? My apologies. This is a separate document. I thought
19 it had been distributed. My apologies.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, while you're looking
21 for that document and having it distributed, might I be allowed to say
23 MR. SCOTT: I'm not going to have the witness talking on my time
24 without answering my question, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment, Witness. We're
1 going to receive this document, just as you are.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] But it's about the last question to
3 which Ms. Alaburic objected, and I said nothing. So I assume I'm in this
4 courtroom to say something, to be allowed to say something.
5 MR. SCOTT: Consider the question withdrawn until we have this
6 document in front of us. There is no pending question.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So the question was withdrawn,
8 but it may return with this document; right?
9 MR. SCOTT: Yes, sir.
10 Q. Sir, if you'll please turn, in P1138, item 6.1 of this report --
11 item 6.1 "Other information":
12 "At 1850, a Spanish convoy escorting Brigadier Pasalic and
13 Colonel Filipovic was detained at control point E5. At 2008, an officer
14 of the HVO military police presented himself at the above-mentioned
15 control point, reinforcing it, and encouraging him men to adopt an
16 aggressive attitude towards the Spanish convoy. Authorisation to
17 continue was given at 2100, but at 2140 the convoy was again detained at
18 the Vrapcici check-point, where allegations were made at the existence of
19 uncontrolled groups that are mining the roads."
20 Now, if you can turn to Exhibit P02241 in the same small binder,
22 I'm going to move very quickly through these documents, usher.
23 This is another Spanish Battalion report. Item 1.1, under "Areas
24 of Responsibility," "Check-points":
25 "On the 9th of May, 1993, after painstaking consultations with
1 Mr. Bozic," I put it to the Chamber that is Slobodan Bozic, HVO, "the
2 Spanish patrol providing escort protection for Brigadier Pasalic and
3 Colonel Filipovic was allowed through the check-point at Vrapcici with
4 the proviso that it must not enter Mostar and must make its way directly
5 to Dracevo."
6 Going to Exhibit P02235 in the same small binder, P02235 "Other
7 Activities," page 5 of the English report:
8 "Transport and escort protection were provided for general
9 Pasalic and General Filipovic from Jablanica to Mostar. The HVO refused
10 this escort entry after a wait of more than seven hours. The persons
11 escorted were taken to Dracevo, where they spent the night and where they
12 still remained."
13 Please turn to Exhibit P1139, P1139, another Spanish Battalion
14 report for the 10th and 11th of May. 5th item under "Mostar":
15 "General Pasalic, commander of the 4th Corps of the Army of
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina, continues to be at the Spanish Detachment in Dracevo.
17 The HVO has set up check-points around the Spanish Detachment to prevent
18 him from leaving ."
19 That's why, sir, Mr. Pasalic -- where Mr. Pasalic was and why he
20 couldn't move freely, and why he couldn't be in Mostar on the 8th, 9th,
21 and 10th of May, 1993, and you conveniently forgot to tell that to the
22 Chamber, but, in fact, created the impression with President Antonetti
23 that it was the international forces who had arrested the two, and you
24 knew full well that you were creating a false impression with these
25 Judges when it was the HVO that controlled where Mr. Pasalic was;
2 A. Your Honours, everything that I've said is correct, and I'll
3 state it again.
4 At a meeting in Konjic and Jablanica, we were there, Pasalic and
5 I, but I had a higher function than he did. I occupied a higher post in
6 the armed forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina. At the time, I was a member of
7 the Joint Command, the number 2 man of this one side or the fourth man or
8 third man within the entire overall Joint Command, whereas Pasalic was
9 commander of a corps.
10 Now, if the HVO prevented Filipovic's entry -- or, rather,
11 Pasalic's entry, and if they prevented Pasalic from entering, they
12 prevented Filipovic, too, that would be nonsense. That's one point.
13 Secondly, before the convoy set out from Jablanica, the HVO could
14 not influence its departure. For four or five hours, the convoy was
15 unable to depart because Mr. Pasalic did not want the convoy to set out
16 for some reason of his own, and he kept arguing with Major Carlos. I
17 assume the man's still alive, so he'll be able to tell you.
18 Now, as to the check-points that we were talking about, I know
19 nothing about them because I was shut up in an APC together with Pasalic.
20 He couldn't see anything; I couldn't see anything. And I woke up in
21 Dracevo. It was 3.00 or 4.00 a.m., and Pasalic woke up then, too,
22 because -- well, now you're implying that I knew that it was -- that
23 Pasalic was not allowed to step down from the APC and some other things.
24 We were arrested by the Spanish Battalion, with all four sides of the
25 container being guarded. There were guards at all four points, so
1 neither he nor I could leave and go anywhere. I said that, I'm saying
2 that again, and I can confirm it 100 more times if need be.
3 Q. Sir, you were a senior commander in the HVO, you were in these
4 vehicles. You were held at HVO check-points for at least seven hours on
5 one occasion. And you're telling us that during that time, as a senior
6 commander of the HVO, you never communicated to the HVO soldiers at the
7 check-point, being held seven hours? You never looked outside, never
8 asked a question?
9 A. Your Honours, we were both shut up in that APC. We would stop
10 and then go, and then stop and then go again.
11 Q. Let's go to another topic, sir, unless the Judges have questions
12 on that item. I'm going to move forward. Or the break.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just before the break, Witness:
14 There are two versions of what happened, yours, and you're under oath,
15 and the Prosecutor's. He is contesting or challenging your version,
16 using the Spanish documents, which are very clear and which state that
17 there were these check-points and that Mr. Pasalic could not go where he
18 wanted to go because he was prevented by the HVO, which was blocking
19 traffic. Now, of course, your version is different. You maintained your
20 version when you answered Mr. Scott.
21 I was quite surprised, and I put that question to you. I asked
22 you why it was that you couldn't contact the HVO, and you told me, No, we
23 were prisoner. Even though we wanted to go to the bathroom, you know, we
24 were escorted. So listening to Mr. Scott and listening to you, well, we
25 have two different versions. Either you're not telling the truth or the
1 Spaniards, to make sure that they could have you at hand. Both of you
2 mentioned check-points and also mentioned rogue groups -- they're blaming
3 this on the HVO, of course, but they are calling them rogue groups,
4 rather than anything else.
5 In this document, you know, I always look at the original version
6 when I have a document, and in the Spanish document, in Spanish, document
7 P11138, we have the Spanish stamp and on this because the Spaniards have
8 this habit of putting stamps everywhere. Well, this document was written
9 on May 8 at 11.30 p.m., and you know that events occurred on the next
10 day, on May 9th in Mostar.
11 Now, in this Spanish document, it says that someone from the HVO
12 informed them of the possibility of a confrontation during the night
13 between the ABiH and the HVO. This is what is written in this document.
14 So are you 100 per cent sure Mr. Pasalic and yourself were kept
15 by the Spaniards, detained?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, as I said, there was
17 a discussion between Pasalic and Carlos in Jablanica for several hours in
18 order for the convoy to start out. Throughout that journey, both on the
19 French side and on the American side, whenever we got into an APC we were
20 unable to communicate with anyone. Therefore, for the duration of that
21 journey, neither Pasalic nor I were in a position to communicate with
22 anyone. We did not know what was going on outside; neither of us did.
23 When we woke up, when the Spaniards opened the door of the APC,
24 we were there among containers in Dracevo. All they asked us was whether
25 we would go on being together in that container. We said, No problem.
1 And we were placed in a container under the strictest -- closest possible
2 monitoring. I don't think even the Spandau prison was anything like
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, General Petkovic.
5 THE ACCUSED PETKOVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your
7 If I may, could you ask the witness a technical question? Why
8 does SpaBat not describe, in its reports, that it drove at least seven
9 kilometres through Mostar, which was under the control of the BH Army,
10 and why did Pasalic not bang on the wall of the APC for the head of the
11 convoy to stop? Why do the Spaniards never say that they drove for seven
12 kilometres through East Mostar, that was under the control of the BH Army
13 and no one else? We saw that a hundred times, Your Honours. Why, then,
14 does Pasalic not bang against the wall of the APC for them to stop,
15 because he could have done whatever he liked? Dracevo is a mere 15
16 kilometres south of Mostar.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, unfortunately we do
18 not have a map at hand, because with a map we could have followed the
19 convoy to see exactly where it passed. But General Petkovic is saying
20 that according to him - of course, it's his version and might not be
21 yours - that you went through -- you must have gone through part of a
22 road that was under the control of the Muslims. Is that possible or not?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Possible territory under the
24 control of the BH Army on that route. It's too big to be ignored. No
25 reason to believe that the area through which we travelled was not under
1 the control of the BH Army.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] When you were in that APC,
3 couldn't you see the outside; yes or no? Are you like in a tin can?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All right. There's an opening
5 through which a Spanish soldier was looking. We could look through the
6 opening, too, but all we saw was the sky, but not in terms of our putting
7 our eye right against the opening; rather, right beside the opening.
8 Therefore, the view from that opening, as far as we in the APC were
9 concerned, was zero.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] If this APC was stopped at
11 check-points, since there was an opening, you must have heard voices
12 asking -- you know, people from the UNPROFOR asking -- people asking the
13 UNPROFOR where they were going when you were arrested. Didn't you hear
14 voices, conversations, did you overhear them at least?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The APC was stationary for hours.
16 When I say "for hours," it was stopped wherever it was stopped. We were
17 only able to see part of the surrounding terrain and part of the sky.
18 The talks, negotiations, were there any, we weren't able to tell. It was
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But couldn't you overhear
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, we heard nothing. The engine
23 was always on. The APC
24 interested. In order for me to catch a glimpse of the surrounding
25 terrain and know where I was, that would have been impossible. I
1 couldn't have known. If Arif Pasalic could have looked outside through
2 the opening and recognised the terrain, I certainly wasn't able to do
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
5 It's five to 4.00. We'll break for 20 minutes.
6 MR. STEWART: Encouraged by Your Honour's comment about me being
7 a stickler for precision the other day, just in case it misleads, I note
8 in the English translation of 11138 there's a reference to the CIA. The
10 "HVO sources have informed the CIA serving in the city." Your Honour,
11 that appears to be -- Your Honour is in a position to confirm this. This
12 comes from the Spanish, which is -- it's -- CIA is as an abbreviation, I
13 think, there for "Al Compania," so I just wanted to note that in case
14 anybody gets mislead by a rather strange reference to CIA in this English
15 version of the document, it's nothing to do with the CIA as we know and
16 love them at all.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, you're right, Mr. Stewart.
18 I hadn't noted that in the English version there is "CIA ," but in the
19 Spanish version it says "Al Cap." So I thought it was the captain of the
21 MR. STEWART: Yes, I think the "CIA" is a Spanish abbreviation
22 for "Al Compania." I think Your Honour would agree with that.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Absolutely.
24 Very well, I think everything is crystal clear now, and we'll
25 break for 20 minutes.
1 --- Recess taken at 3.57 p.m.
2 --- On resuming at 4.20 p.m.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The court is back in session.
4 Mr. Scott.
5 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President.
6 Q. Mr. Filipovic, I'd like to turn to the topic of Sovici/Doljani,
7 about which you were asked a number of questions. I'd like you to turn,
8 first of all, please, to Exhibit P01933. It should be in the main
9 binder, in numerical order, P01933.
10 Sir, this is a report from Colonel Siljeg on the 17th of April,
11 1993. Just two quick questions. And the first item says that:
12 "Due to T-130 actions ..."
13 Can you just tell us, for the record, what's the "T-130" refer
15 A. I don't know exactly. Perhaps it's a type of cannon.
16 Q. And several items below that, if you'll see the sentence:
17 "BH Army forces in Sovici village are crushed, some soldiers and
18 civilians are fleeing from Sovici and some are surrendering."
19 Now, you have no reason to disagree with Mr. Siljeg that that was
20 the state of affairs in Sovici on the 17th of April, 1993; correct?
21 A. I can't say, Yes, and I can't say, No.
22 Q. You have no reason to disagree with them? You have no basis to
23 disagree with Mr. Siljeg; correct?
24 A. No, no basis.
25 Q. The meeting that we saw the video of on the 4th of May, can you
1 recall approximately the time of day? I know it was some time ago, but
2 as approximately the best you can, when that meeting started and
3 approximately when the meeting ended?
4 A. I can only assume that it started sometime at 9.30 or 10.00, and
5 that it ended at about 12.00, 12.30. After that, we were supposed to go
6 to -- to leave and go three different ways.
7 Q. All right. And just so the record is very clear, when you say
8 9.30 to 10.00, you're talking about 9.30 to 10.00 in the morning until
9 approximately 12.00 or 12.30 in the afternoon?
10 A. That's right.
11 Q. Now, according to the transcript -- we weren't getting a
12 translation of the meeting when we were actually seeing the video, but
13 there was a transcript that went with it, and during that meeting
14 Mr. Halilovic offers the -- "the hand of friendship" to the HVO, but
15 raises a number of issues: the holding of Muslim men, expelled Muslims
16 from their homes, Mostar becoming a detention centre. And he wanted
17 questions from Mr. Petkovic on those points; correct?
18 A. It's true, what Sefer was saying, and it's true, also, what
19 Petkovic was saying.
20 Q. And wouldn't you agree with me, sir, that based upon the
21 grievances that Mr. Halilovic and Mr. Pasalic were expressing on that
22 day, they had some reason to be upset, didn't they?
23 A. Your Honours, the meeting at Jablanica occurred 10 days after an
24 intense round of meetings in Central Bosnia, where we also held
25 meetings --
1 Q. Sorry, our time is limited. Mr. Pasalic and Mr. Halilovic had
2 reasons to be upset, didn't they; yes or no?
3 A. I won't testify here by saying yes or no. I didn't spend all the
4 time and all the energy to do that. I'm telling you what was going on.
5 At that meeting, for me --
6 [Overlapping speakers]
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- what Sefer said was actually
8 shocking, and also what Arif Pasalic said was also shocking.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, you are here to answer
10 the questions put to you by the Prosecutor. In this procedure, the
11 Prosecutor is allowed to give his point of view, saying that this meeting
12 didn't unfold correctly, yes or no. It's his point of view. Just
13 answer, Yes, or No. And then if he wants to know why you don't agree
14 with him, he will ask you why and press on. He is conducting his
15 cross-examination the way he wishes. I'm sure that Ms. Alaburic told you
16 about this.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, he asked me -- he put
18 it to me that Arif Pasalic and Sefer Halilovic had reason to act the way
19 they did. I don't know if they had reason or not. I'm just trying to
20 say what I found shocking. I found shocking what they actually said and
21 how they said it at the meeting, which was very different from anything
22 they previously said at any of the meetings.
23 MR. SCOTT:
24 Q. You don't know? You the answer is you don't know?
25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
1 MR. SCOTT: Thank you.
2 Q. Now, one of the things that came up at that meeting was that
3 Mr. Pasalic complained about the HVO's arrest of 14 of his soldiers, that
4 is, Mr. Pasalic's soldiers, the night before. And when the issue was
5 raised with Mr. Petkovic, Mr. Petkovic says, and this is at page 11 of
6 the transcript:
7 "Give me a list of the 14 people arrested, and they will be freed
8 tonight, after I get back to Mostar."
9 You were then asked by Ms. Alaburic, after the video was played:
10 "Now, did General Petkovic demonstrate readiness for
11 co-operation? What was your impression about his real intentions and
13 "A. Our side, on the whole, as a whole, wanted, wished, and
14 endeavoured to do that."
15 So on the one hand, sir, you have this representation by
16 Mr. Petkovic that he's about to see to the immediate release of 14 men
17 held captive by the HVO, but I'd like you to look, please, next at
18 Exhibit P02182, P02182.
19 While you're doing that, sir, to use the time, this is an order
20 from Mr. Petkovic to Stipe Polo or Pole on the 4th of May, 1993, at 2200
21 hours, we can see at the top part of the page.
22 Now, sir, this is the same Stipe Polo or Pole who you've told --
23 you've mentioned several times as one of your sources of information as
24 to what happened in Sovici/Doljani; correct? Correct?
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. And Mr. Petkovic gives this order to Mr. Pole:
2 "Release all detained civilians in Doljani and Sovici, keep men
3 fit for military service."
4 Now, I'm going to take those in reverse order.
5 When you were collecting information that you told us about last
6 week, in talking to Mr. Polo, in talking to some of the others that you
7 said you talked to, did you obtain this information that it was
8 Mr. Petkovic who had ordered that all the Muslim men be detained?
9 A. No.
10 Q. And do you know, to your knowledge, whether there was any effort
11 to distinguish or classify the Muslim men, those who had actually been
12 engaged in combat and those who had not been?
13 A. I don't know of any cases where a distinction was drawn.
14 Q. And, sir, this is the 4th of May, 1993. I want to take us back
15 to one of our earlier topics today. This is after the cease-fire dated
16 the 20th of April, 1993. This is after the joint statement by Boban and
17 Izetbegovic on the 25th of April, 1993, in which everything was supposed
18 to be at peace and the armies were supposed to join together and fight
19 together. In that circumstance, why would Mr. Petkovic order the
20 detention of the Muslim men? Peace had broken out. You were on the same
21 side, according to you. Why hold the Muslim men?
22 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, Mr. Scott. I might be lost somehow.
23 I have here a paper where Mr. Petkovic orders the release. I
24 have not seen any order that they be detained. Maybe I missed that.
25 MR. SCOTT: Perhaps at the end of the sentence, sir, after
1 "Sovici," you'll see:
2 "... keep men fit for military service."
3 Does that assist?
4 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I see that.
5 MR. SCOTT: That's what I [overlapping speakers].
6 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Okay, it's not "arrest," it's "continued
7 detention" that is ordered, so in this way it's slightly equivocal. But
8 thank you.
9 MR. SCOTT:
10 Q. Why keep holding Muslim men, sir, at this time?
11 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would just like to
12 ask Mr. Scott to be as precise as possible. Here, we are clearly talking
13 about able-bodied men of military age, and not just generic Muslims.
14 Therefore, I think there's a need to be as specific as possible here.
15 MR. SCOTT: There's no need for that intervention. The document
16 says plainly what it says, "keep men fit for military service," and
17 doesn't change my question at all.
18 Q. There's a cease-fire, there's an agreement, you're saying the HVO
19 is a legitimate part of the BiH armed forces, We're on the same side.
20 Why hold -- continue to hold the Muslim men of any description, as
21 ordered by General Petkovic?
22 A. I've answered that already. I said I don't know about them being
23 detained. I don't know if the document is authentic. I don't know why
24 men fit for military service were separated off.
25 Q. And do you know why this -- going to the first part, "Release all
1 detained civilians in Doljani and Sovici...," do you know why the
2 civilians had been detained?
3 A. Your Honours, as I've said already, I know nothing about Sovici
4 and Doljani, apart from the talks I had at the base in Jablanica.
5 Q. Sir, that's exactly my point, and that was the point of my
6 objection during your direct examination. You're giving testimony about
7 something you knew nothing about. You simply don't know what happened at
8 Sovici/Doljani; correct?
9 You can't have --
10 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me, there's no need for an intervention here.
11 The witness can't have it both ways. He can't say, I'm going to testify
12 about Sovici/Doljani or I don't know anything about it.
13 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, Your Honours, I
14 don't know why Mr. Scott appears to be losing his temper in the course of
15 this examination. The witness clearly said he knew nothing about the
16 events at Sovici and Doljani, but he said he knew about the agreement --
17 about the evacuation of people from Sovici and Doljani. He knew about
18 them leaving for Gornji Vakuf and from then on to Jablanica. But that's
19 a different subject altogether. That doesn't mean the witness knows what
20 was going on in Sovici and Doljani, who was detained where, and how many
21 people were detained. The witness clearly said very clearly what he
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic, let
24 General Filipovic answer. He's able enough to understand a question and
25 to answer questions. It's a waste of time if you have irrelevant
1 objections. The Prosecutor asked the witness why civilians were
2 detained, as stated in the document. Well, the witness can say, I wasn't
3 there, I don't know anything about it, and then a question can be asked
4 whether it was normal to detain civilians. And he might answer then,
5 Yes, No.
6 Please continue, Mr. Scott.
7 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
8 MR. SCOTT:
9 Q. A reference that was just made to an evacuation. That's part of
10 the point. You don't know what the conditions were, you don't what
11 happened in Sovici/Doljani, you don't know in what conditions the Muslim
12 women and children were being held, or what had happened to them, or what
13 had happened to the men, do you? So when you say "evacuation," that's
14 your characterisation of something that you don't know anything about;
16 A. All I know about Sovici and Doljani is what I talked about with
17 Biskit [phoen], Ola, Zuka, and Nihad.
18 Q. Do you know, sir, that this Tribunal has specifically rejected
19 the characterisation of this as an evacuation?
20 A. No.
21 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, let's just try to be
22 specific. Which Chamber? In Croatian, the interpretation we got was
23 "this Chamber," this Chamber dismissed something or has rejected a
25 MR. SCOTT: This Tribunal, this Tribunal in the Tuta Stela case.
1 Q. Are you aware of that, sir?
2 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] So that means some other Trial
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
5 MR. SCOTT:
6 Q. Do you know how -- you said that you were involved in arranging
7 the buses that did come. How did you -- what arrangements did you make
8 to have the buses arrive in Sovici? Who did you contact, what
9 arrangements did you put in place?
10 A. I checked to see whether the buses had been sent to Sovici and
12 Q. I didn't ask you about you checked to see if they had. What
13 arrangements did you make? Who did you contact in order to arrange for
14 the buses to be sent? Did you talk to -- you talked to Slobodan Bozic,
15 didn't you?
16 A. I talked to someone in the Main Staff. I think it was the duty
17 officer or someone.
18 Q. Where did the buses come from?
19 A. I don't know that either.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I have been listening
21 very carefully to your answer. It is a relevant answer, but in another
22 respect regarding Mostar.
23 The Prosecutor asked you how you organised yourself to send
24 buses, and you said that you called somebody at the Main Staff. In other
25 words, whenever there was this kind of logistical problem when you had to
1 dispatch buses and drivers, the buses must have fuel, they must have a
2 destination. So in your view, it was the Main Staff that organised all
3 that; is that correct?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, because Petkovic told them,
5 Check to see if the buses had been sent to Sovici and Doljani. I don't
6 know where from -- or, rather, at that point in time I couldn't have
7 known from where the buses had been sent, who had organised it. But it
8 turns out that it was organised by the Main Staff.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So did
10 General Petkovic ask you to check whether the buses had been sent? He
11 didn't ask you to organise the dispatching; he just asked you to check,
12 didn't he? In other words, somebody else organised the question of the
13 buses. You just checked, didn't you?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Correct.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let us imagine that you
16 encountered a problem regarding the transportation of civilians at your
17 level, so some civilians have to be evacuated. Who do you have to turn
18 to to have them be evacuated?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Probably the civilian authorities,
20 because the Main Staff, I don't know whether it had any buses. So the
21 civilian authorities were the ones who were supposed to organise that.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But then in this instance of
23 Sovici and Doljani, why is it that it was taken care of by the Main Staff
24 and not by civilian authorities?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Because Sefer, the way you saw him
1 on the video, and Petkovic talked, discussed, agreed, and I don't know
2 why the Main Staff dealt with that, or, rather, Petkovic. Probably at
3 the request of Sefer.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yet, you know, my questions are
5 extremely important, as you can imagine. I just don't ask a question for
6 the sake of it. I don't waste my time asking useless questions.
7 Whenever civilians are evacuated, there may arise problems
8 because of the state of their health, the food, et cetera. In such an
9 environment, shouldn't it be the Civilian Protection that should take
10 care of all this?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Possibly it should have, it should
12 have been dealt with by the Civilian Protection. But for everything to
13 be successful, the HVO had to involve itself to see that everything went
14 without a hitch.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So let me return to
16 Sovici/Doljani. And imagine that General Petkovic hears that following
17 fighting, there are civilians to be evacuated because there are problems;
18 either to protect them or for any other reason. Shouldn't he have turned
19 to the Civilian Protection to take over the problem? Why did he take
20 care of the problem in person?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't know whether it was
22 him or not. He told me to check and see if the buses had left or gone to
23 Sovici and Doljani. That's what I know. Now, who organised it, I really
24 don't know.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So the thing to be remembered
1 is that you just checked, and the rest escapes you. Fine.
2 Mr. Scott.
3 MR. SCOTT:
4 Q. Turning to a moment on another topic. On military discipline,
5 sir, you said in your Kordic testimony that HVO commanders had authority
6 to take disciplinary measures against their subordinates at various
7 levels; correct?
8 A. They had authority on paper, according to the rules or whatever
9 they were, but in actual fact they could do very little, except if there
10 was a large mistake made, then there was the prison in Busovaca where
11 they were sent.
12 Q. Those in the military chain of command were involved in military
13 disciplinary investigations, weren't they?
14 A. Correct.
15 Q. And you said -- one of the things you said in your previous
16 testimony -- excuse me, my apologies. One of the things that
17 Mr. Petkovic said in his testimony in the Blaskic case, that one of the
18 things a commander can do is to detain a subordinate for up to 15 days of
19 detention. Correct? You would agree with that?
20 A. I can agree with that. I mean, it's correct, except for the
21 question of where they would be detained.
22 Q. And Petkovic also testified in the Blaskic case that
23 Colonel Blaskic had the authority to punish any officers or soldiers --
24 HVO soldiers who were involved in the crimes or misconduct at Ahmici.
25 Would you agree with Mr. Petkovic that Blaskic had that authority?
1 A. The crime in Ahmici surpassed the incarceration of soldiers, it
2 went beyond that. The crime in Ahmici took place after combat, but the
3 crime -- and nobody is denying it, but the crime surpassed this 15-day
4 incarceration period or whatever.
5 Q. That wasn't my question. My specific question was -- and this is
6 in Mr. Petkovic's Blaskic testimony at page 24166:
7 "Blaskic had the authority to punish any HVO officers or soldiers
8 who were involved in the crimes or misconduct at Ahmici."
9 Now, do you agree or disagree with Mr. Petkovic?
10 A. Blaskic had the authority to detain an officer or a soldier.
11 Q. You just mentioned, in response to the question that I put to you
12 about Ahmici, that Blaskic had this authority. In fact, sir, you
13 testified previously at this Tribunal in the Kordic case that you really
14 were fairly dismissive of the crime at Ahmici, weren't you? You said
15 that the -- what happened at Ahmici and the issues there was not
16 something very important until some years later, when you said this
17 impression that was created was "orchestrated or fabricated." That's the
18 testimony you gave in the Kordic case, isn't is it?
19 A. I said that for the first few days after Ahmici -- or Santici,
20 rather, it wasn't -- well, at all the meetings from the 20th onwards, the
21 question of Ahmici wasn't raised, or Santici, in that sense, and not
22 several years later.
23 Q. Sir, this is the testimony you gave at page 17054 to 55 in the
24 Kordic case about Ahmici: It was not something special until later,
25 1994-1995, and it looked to you like it had been orchestrated like a
1 "fabricated picture." That was the view you expressed of the controversy
2 concerning Ahmici in your Kordic testimony; correct?
3 A. I said then and I'm saying now, in those first days or in the
4 first month, because I was constantly with the commanders from the
5 BH Army, I've already said that I spent two nights in Konjic with them
6 and two nights in Zenica, in the Joint Command, nobody raised this
7 question of Ahmici or, rather, Santici. And so in that sense, it was
8 only when Mazowiecki toured Ahmici that -- and in the world -- when the
9 mosque was destroyed, that's when the real pressure began or, rather, the
10 events in Ahmici became something a la Srebrenica, akin to Srebrenica.
11 Q. Sir, you testified in the Kordic case that it was not until 1994
12 or 1995 that the controversy about Ahmici was, in your words,
13 orchestrated like a fabricated picture; correct?
14 A. After this picture about Ahmici had been raised, all my
15 efforts -- everything positive that I had incorporated into the defence
16 fell through because we were all criminals. That's how it was
17 orchestrated then and now.
18 Q. You're not answering my question, but I don't have time to pursue
19 it further.
20 In fact, sir, you didn't investigate any war crimes during the
21 time you were in command, did you? You didn't direct that any be
22 conducted, you weren't involved in any investigations of war crimes;
24 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Objection.
25 [In English] I have objection. First, the witness should be
1 asked whether he was -- whether he had any authority to perform
2 investigation or criminal investigation, then if he -- depending on his
3 answer, then he can be asked whether he did perform some of them.
4 MR. SCOTT:
5 Q. Sir, you didn't conduct any investigations of war crimes, didn't
6 you? You testified in the Kordic case:
7 "No, I didn't, I did not investigate war crimes."
8 That's what you testified in the Kordic case; correct?
9 Page 17239.
10 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would like to join
11 my colleague in objecting, and I'd like to ask my colleague, first of
12 all, where it was prescribed that a military commander must instigate
13 investigations to take proceedings. And if it is established that
14 Mr. Filipovic occupied a post where that was possible, then he could be
15 asked the question.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, for it to be clear for
17 everybody: Earlier on, the Prosecutor told you that there had been no
18 punishment. I sensed that there was going to be a problem, and I waited
19 for the right time to ask my questions, and then there were objections by
20 the Defence counsel. I'm taking not Ahmici, but a theoretical case.
21 You command a unit, and a crime is committed. You are informed
22 that a soldier, for instance, burned down a house or stole the money in
23 the house and killed its inhabitants, and so you are being made aware of
24 it. Tell me, if you go by the JNA rules at the time, what did it say and
25 what did the HVO rules say? What is the military commander supposed to
1 do? So this is a very clear question. What were you supposed to do?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, there's no dilemmas.
3 Behind the JNA, you had the state, the system, and whatever else, but for
4 the HVO in Central Bosnia, no courts functioned. You were not able to
5 organise anything because everybody had an automatic rifle in their hands
6 and all they had to do was to pull the trigger and 30 bullets would be
7 shot. So I was required to say whether I conducted investigations or
8 whatever, initiated them. First of all --
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let me stop you, General. My
10 question was extremely specific. It couldn't be more specific, but I'll
11 fine-tune it.
12 You were in Travnik, and you learned that one of the soldiers
13 burned down a house, stole the money out of the house, and killed the
14 inhabitants of that house. What do you do? This is very clear. What
15 are you going to do?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I had to take steps to prevent
17 anything like that from happening again. A soldier was incarcerated in a
18 Travnik garrison for having killed an HVO member, and then the brother
19 the next day of the victim killed this person who was in prison, so I'm
20 trying to paint what the situation was like in reality. And for a
21 commander to exercise his authority, you have to be backed up by a whole
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you for the example you
24 gave of the brother, because that was a case you experienced yourself.
25 But let's take another example.
1 I'll go back to mine. A soldier burned down a house, stole
2 money, and killed the inhabitants of the house. What steps do you have
3 to take? What specific steps do you take immediately? What do you have
4 to do?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I should arrest the soldier and put
6 him in prison, disarm him, and hand him over for an investigation. That
7 would be it.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You see, that was easy and
9 specific. You have to arrest him, disarm him, and hand him over to the
10 body in charge of investigations. Which are the bodies in charge of
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That would be the courts, the
13 investigating judge, the whole system. But there was none of that.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So normally speaking, you
15 should hand him over to the investigating judge and to the courts, but
16 you say that all that did not exist. Did that not exist in Travnik?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All over the Central Bosnia
18 Operative Zone.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So, you see, it's easy to
20 answer specific questions. That's all I need, as far as I'm concerned.
21 Please, Mr. Scott.
22 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President.
23 Q. If I can ask you next, please, to turn to Exhibit P11128, P11128.
24 Can I have the usher's assistance, please. Can I have the
25 usher's assistance, please.
1 While the usher's assisting us, sir, and to use the time: By
2 April of 1994, you were the commander of the Central Bosnia Operative
3 Zone, or it might have been called at that point the Vitez Military
4 District; is that correct?
5 A. Yes, the Vitez Operative Zone.
6 Q. And is it correct, sir, that by April of 1994, Mr. Petkovic had
7 once again become the head of the HVO military, had the number 1
9 A. Probably.
10 Q. And when you became head of the Central Bosnia Operative Zone,
11 Colonel Blaskic had moved and taken a position in Herzegovina. Do you
12 know what position Mr. Blaskic took at that time?
13 A. Blaskic went to replace Petkovic, and I replaced Blaskic.
14 Q. So as of April 1994, is it correct, sir, that Mr. Petkovic was
15 again the head of -- the number 1 person in the HVO military, Mr. Blaskic
16 was number 2, and then you were head of the Military District in Central
17 Bosnia; is that correct?
18 A. When Blaskic took on those functions where it was Petkovic, when
19 Blaskic took over them, Blaskic was the commander.
20 Q. All right, sir. Our time is too limited, unfortunately, to try
21 to sort that out any further.
22 If I can ask you to look at Exhibit P11128. This is a report by
23 UNPROFOR. Let me just -- it's on page 3 of the English version, item 16,
24 under "Sector South-West." The point is simply this, sir, if you can
25 confirm for us, it says:
1 "Commander, Vitez pocket, Filip Filipovic has been promoted from
2 colonel to brigadier."
3 Do you recall the approximate date on which you were promoted
4 from colonel to brigadier?
5 A. That was in May 1994.
6 Q. Could you look, please, at P11129, P11129.
7 Is it correct, sir, that around -- at the same time that you were
8 promoted to brigadier, Mr. Ivica Rajic was promoted to the same rank,
9 Mr. Kordic was promoted to the same rank, and Mr. Franjo Nakic was
10 promoted to the same rank?
11 A. I know about Nakic for sure, I know as far as Kordic is
12 concerned. Now, Ivo Lozancic and probably Ivica Rajic on the same day.
13 Q. Did it surprise you, sir, to see Mr. Kordic given the rank of
14 brigadier, when you've said so many times that Kordic had no military
15 role, no military involvement, was not a military commander?
16 A. A rank can be used for command, the command of units, but it can
17 also be for other elements of organisation. For example, in 1992, Lucic
18 in Kiseljak was given the rank of brigadier just because he had to
19 negotiate in Kiseljak, so he had to have a rank, whereas he wasn't in
20 command of anything, didn't command anything.
21 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just a moment.
22 Could you ask what this person's first name was, Lucic? I think
23 it was important, what this man Lucic was doing in Kiseljak. Could that
24 question be asked, please?
25 MR. SCOTT: No, not on my time.
1 Q. Were you surprised --
2 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I apologise to my learned friend,
3 but I don't have time, so that's why I intervened, although I know who it
4 refers to. But I apologise for interfering.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, this Lucic person,
6 Lucic person, could you give us his first name?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Lucic. I can't remember his first
8 name. I know him very well, and he was from Kiseljak. Lucic.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. That's all you can
11 In this document, we see that you signed after Mr. Ivica Rajic,
12 who becomes brigadier, just like you?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, at that point in time
14 it wasn't the rank of general. I became major general only in February
15 1995. So this was the rank of brigadier, the highest officer rank, but
16 not the rank of general.
17 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Let me just tell you, Your
18 Honours, that in the Croatian your question was mistranslated as if it
19 was the rank of general that was being allotted. That's why you have the
20 witness answering as he's just done.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
22 MR. SCOTT:
23 Q. Brigadier was the second-highest rank in the HVO; there's only
24 the rank of general higher than that?
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. Did it surprise you, sir, to see Ivica Rajic being promoted to
2 this very high HVO rank, in light of his history?
3 A. At that moment, he was the commander of the operative group, the
4 tactical group, just like Ivo Lozancic in --
5 Q. He was under your command, wasn't he, sir, when you became --
6 well, he was under your command both when you were the deputy commander
7 of the Central Bosnia Operative Zone throughout most or at least the
8 second half of 1993, and he was under your command when you became
9 commander of the Central Bosnia Operative Zone, correct, Mr. Rajic?
10 A. When I became commander, Rajic was no longer in Kiseljak.
11 Q. Sir, he was under your command, wasn't he?
12 A. He was under my command while I was the deputy commander of the
13 Military District, so in that sense.
14 Q. And, sir, did you know -- throughout this period, did you know
15 this man as Ivica Rajic or did you ever know him as Viktor Andric?
16 A. After the Washington Agreement and when I was able to go to
17 Kiseljak, I saw that the commander of the brigade was Mijo -- Mijo --
18 Q. You didn't answer my question. I don't know why, what the error
19 might have been, but you didn't answer my question.
20 This man that you say was promoted to brigadier on the same day
21 that you were, Ivica Rajic, did you know him throughout that period as
22 Ivica Rajic or did you ever know him as Viktor Andric?
23 A. I knew him as Ivica Rajic.
24 Q. You knew, a deputy commander, by the end of October of 1993, that
25 there had been a huge alleged atrocity in Stupni Do and that Ivica Rajic
1 was the principal suspect concerning that atrocity, didn't you?
2 A. No. I learnt that after the war.
3 Q. Well, let's look at Exhibit P06182.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You have five minutes left,
5 Mr. Scott.
6 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 Q. Sir, this is an UNPROFOR press release, dated the 27th of
8 October, reporting the Stupni Do atrocity. It also includes the fact
9 that the UNPROFOR was kept out of Stupni Do by the HVO for three days
10 before they could actually enter the village. Sir, this Chamber has
11 heard extensive evidence about Stupni Do, the fact that it was reported
12 literally around the world, in New York, at the UN, in the capitals of
13 Europe, within a matter of days of it happening. This was in your area
14 of command. You were the deputy commander. And I put it to you, sir,
15 you could not possibly not have known about this huge controversy in your
16 area of responsibility; isn't that correct?
17 A. Your Honours, what I'm claiming is that I didn't know and
18 couldn't have known. Now, whether New York knew, I can't say. I know
19 that as far as Ahmici is concerned, the whole world knew on the day when
20 it happened. I did not know.
21 Q. Let's go to Exhibit P07394, P07394. This is an order by
22 General -- by Mr. Blaskic on the 30th of December, 1993, which he
23 dismisses Ivica Rajic from his position. And the grounds given by
24 Colonel Blaskic are:
25 "Colonel Rajic is being dismissed from his duty due to a series
1 of apparent weaknesses in command and control and an irresponsible
2 influence on the units while carrying out combat operations."
3 And I note that Mr. Blaskic's order is copied to the HVO
4 Main Staff, to the HVO Ministry of Defence, et cetera.
5 Now, with that document in mind, I ask you to turn next, please,
6 to P09981, P09981.
7 This is a document by the same Colonel Blaskic, dated the 5th of
8 November, 1993, commending Mr. Rajic:
9 "Your military attitude towards task and your huge contribution
10 to the organisation of defence and salvation of Croats from Vares has
11 been a great moral inspiration to all of us."
12 So on the one hand, sir, we have Colonel Blaskic praising
13 Ivica Rajic for a great organisation of military forces, for a terrific
14 military attitude, for making a huge contribution, and for being a great
15 moral inspiration to us all. Several weeks later, we have the same
16 Colonel Blaskic dismissing the same man due to a series of apparent
17 weaknesses in command and control and an irresponsible influence on the
18 units. Now, sir, which one was it?
19 A. Your Honours, as to the time we're discussing, we had nothing to
20 do with the Kiseljak enclave. It was 12 kilometres of territory that was
21 controlled by the BH Army. Now, Blaskic, on two or three times, flew by
22 helicopter from the Lasva Valley to the south, he flew south, and he
23 could have learnt the truth or whatever else; I don't know. I could not
25 Q. Sir, please turn to -- and I'm closing, Mr. President. If you
1 please turn to P07401, P07401.
2 Sir, this is an order from the same Colonel Blaskic the very same
3 day as one of the two that I showed you a moment ago, the 30th of
4 December, 1993, appointing Colonel Viktor Andric to take command of the
5 forward command post in Kiseljak. Sir, I put it to you that this -- all
6 of this takes place right under your nose, as deputy commander of this
7 operative zone, someone operating in the Vitez Hotel, as you told us the
8 other day, only several metres from Mr. Blaskic's office, how documents
9 and orders were prepared, and you could not have been a deputy commander
10 of this operative zone and not known about this entire subterfuge.
11 Viktor Andric and Ivica Rajic were one in the same person, weren't they,
12 and you knew it?
13 A. Your Honour, from the Command of the Military District,
14 Krizancevo Selo is just a short distance away, 15 minutes away. Now,
15 during these Christmas days of 1993, it was Christmas, there were many
16 other things, and now I'm being shown a document and said that I must
17 have known about it. I had nothing to do with all these papers. I
18 wasn't a paper soldier. What I knew about were concrete things. So when
19 I say I don't know, I'm not lying. I'm telling you what I do know.
20 MR. SCOTT: If I can be allowed one final exhibit, Mr. President,
21 P07840, P07840.
22 Q. I only have time to show you --
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The last exhibit, please,
24 because you're running out of time. You've run out of time, actually.
25 MR. SCOTT: If I might finish this exhibit, Your Honour, and just
1 two questions.
2 P07840. I would be most appreciative.
3 Q. Sir, I only have time to show you one particular -- one of
4 several illustrations, but this is a Security Council report dated the
5 10th of February, 1994, well before the awarding of Mr. Rajic to the
6 brigadier rank that we saw a few moments ago.
7 In paragraph number 12 of this Security Council report, in the
8 second half of paragraph 12, Mr. Ivica Rajic is described as the main
9 suspect. And I put it to you again, sir, this is was a matter of
10 worldwide notoriety, it was the subject for the Security Council of the
11 United Nations, and I put it to you, sir, that when you, on this same
12 document, P11129, were promoted the very same day as Mr. Ivica Rajic, you
13 knew exactly who Mr. Rajic was, you knew he had been called
14 Viktor Andric, and you knew of his history, didn't you?
15 A. Your Honours, I didn't know. I had no way of knowing. I really
16 don't know what Rajic was indicted for, was he in Stupni Do or not, or
17 anything to do with that. Please take that into account. If I say I
18 don't know, that means just that, I don't know.
19 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Mr. President. I have no further
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
22 Ms. Alaburic, you have the floor for your redirect.
23 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think the best
24 idea would be to have a break right now. I would like to organise my
25 examination a little and start my redirect in what I believe will be the
1 most efficient way.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] How long do you need for your
3 redirect? You know that all the time you will use will be deducted from
4 your overall time.
5 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, my assessment now is
6 that I can do whatever I think is necessary in about an hour. I hope
7 that you, too, will be joining the discussion concerning some documents
8 and some issues. That probably means that, in practical terms, we could
9 keep on talking to this witness until the end of the day. And we might
10 have a break now.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Had it been less,
12 it would have been best to end the redirect with the witness and then to
13 have the new witness after the break, but you're telling us that you need
14 about an hour.
15 Let me consult with my fellow Judges to see how to proceed.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We'll have a break, a 20-minute
19 --- Recess taken at 5.18 p.m.
20 --- On resuming at 5.41 p.m.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stewart.
22 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, just very quickly to mention that the
23 Petkovic team and the Prosecution have agreed between ourselves, subject
24 to Your Honours' approval, of course, that we might have until Thursday
25 to file the IC lists of proposed exhibits following the end of this
1 witness's evidence. So, Your Honours, would appreciate -- it sometimes
2 is a bit tight for us, one witness coming after another. So if Your
3 Honours are happy with that - I hope you are - that's what we've agreed.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] If you agree, the matter is
6 Ms. Alaburic, the Trial Chamber would like to know which items
7 you want to deal with.
8 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I thank you.
9 Good evening to you. Good evening to my learned friends from the
10 Prosecution, the witness, and everyone else.
11 My subjects are as follows: Firstly, the arrival of Arif Pasalic
12 in Dracevo, an analysis of documents shown by the OTP today and pointing
13 on the map at all the locations that Arif Pasalic had to go through in
14 order to reach Dracevo. The next subject is the JNA leaving all the
15 barracks in Bosnia and Herzegovina. I will tell you, when the time
16 comes, what that is in relation to. The third subject is about the
17 video-clip and the speech given by Dario Kordic in Busovaca on the 16th
18 of January, 1993. The fourth subject is General Filipovic's evidence in
19 the Kordic case and the credence that the Chamber lent to its relevance
20 in relation to Dario Kordic's command. The fifth subject is about the
21 organigram of the HVO used by General Petkovic in the Blaskic case, who
22 would have decided on the re-subordination of the Convicts Battalion.
23 The sixth subject, on the status of men fit for military service. The
24 seventh subject -- correction. The Kordic speech was given in 1992 and
25 not in 1993, as I erroneously stated. I do apologise. The seventh
1 subject is about the Prosecution and duties of a military commander in a
2 situation when the perpetrator is unknown. The eighth subject would have
3 to do with the legality and legitimacy of the HVO, very briefly. The
4 ninth subject would be organising the HVO as a considerable military
5 force in 1992 or later. And the 10th subject would be why was
6 General Filipovic surprised by the fact that the indictments from this
7 Tribunal raised against the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina started with
8 Central Bosnia and not some other areas of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
9 There will be a number of new documents being introduced.
10 I think I will manage to ask my questions in an exceptionally brief way,
11 and I hope that we'll be shedding new light on a number of matters.
12 If I may, I would now like to move on to my first subject.
13 Re-examination by Ms. Alaburic:
14 Q. [Interpretation] Let us analyse Arif Pasalic's departure for
15 Dracevo in an UNPROFOR vehicle. General Filipovic, you drove in that
16 UNPROFOR APC
17 A. Yes, that's right.
18 Q. If there is someone inside, what about the person inside this
19 vehicle; can this person decide when they'll stick their head out through
20 the hatch, when he or she will leave the vehicle, or does the vehicle
21 have to be opened by someone else?
22 A. Whenever I drove in an APC
23 entirely unable to affect anything at all, do anything at all, open the
24 door of the hatch or anything like that.
25 Q. What about the security aspect? Would it ever be allowed for
1 someone who is inside an UNPROFOR vehicle, when the vehicle pulls over,
2 to stick their head out to see where they were?
3 A. That would have been impossible. There is a soldier who is
4 inside the APC
5 opening you may be able to catch a glimpse of something or other.
6 Q. General, based on your information, if an UNPROFOR vehicle came
7 to a check-point, would the UNPROFOR soldiers immediately tell the
8 soldiers at the check-point who the persons were inside the vehicle, or
9 was the information confidential?
10 A. It was impermissible to ever give away such information at all as
11 to who was inside the APC
12 Q. General, when the convoy of APCs, carrying you and Arif Pasalic,
13 came to any of the HVO check-points held by HVO soldiers, what about
14 those HVO soldiers at the check-point; were they in a position to know
15 who was inside which UNPROFOR vehicle?
16 A. We inside the vehicle didn't know who was outside. Those outside
17 didn't know who was in the vehicle.
18 JUDGE PRANDLER: Please, let me ask you again to slow down.
19 Thank you.
20 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honours.
21 We apologise if we were going too fast.
22 Q. General, you remember the SpaBat documents that we were looking
23 at. There are two check-points specified there at which the UNPROFOR
24 vehicles were stopped. The first is marked as "E-5," and the other was
25 described as being near Vrapcici. Did you notice that as you were
1 looking at those documents?
2 A. No, but I know where Vrapcici is.
3 Q. If we look at the SpaBat documents, it wasn't observed anywhere
4 that after Vrapcici, the convoy was stopped at any other check-point
5 before Dracevo, itself. I'm just stating the fact. I tried to look at
6 the documents closely, and after Vrapcici there were no other
8 Can we now please look at the map 4D1216. This is a map of the
9 Mostar area. It's simple and somewhat stylised, but should be sufficient
10 for our present purpose.
11 General, I do have to admit I'm not sure if it's at the beginning
12 or the end of your folder. It's a map in colour, red, blue and green.
13 There it is. It's right there at the beginning.
14 General, let's try to look at this map now. Can we please blow
15 up the section around Mostar, itself. That's right, thank you.
16 General, you can follow this on the screen in front of you. At
17 the edge of the green area, around East Mostar, we can see "Vrapcici"; is
18 that right?
19 A. Yes, to the north.
20 Q. General, if a vehicle reaches Vrapcici, it must be on M-17, the
21 main road. If the vehicle is to head south, which route must it take?
22 A. It has to drive down the left-hand riverbank of the Neretva
23 River, east of Vrapcici, and then on towards Mostar, and then further
24 south, about a kilometre further south, as far as trig point Hum 436, and
25 then further east, about half a kilometre further east, and then south
1 through Ortijes and then further south. We don't see Dracevo on the map,
2 actually. Dracevo is at least 15 kilometres further south from Ortijes.
3 Q. Let's try to sum this up, General. A vehicle continues to move
4 from Jablanica on to Vrapcici and then further south. This vehicle has
5 to pass through East Mostar; right?
6 A. Yes, that's true.
7 Q. What about East Mostar; is that the area marked in green here as
8 being under the control of the Muslim authorities?
9 A. Yes, the entire area is like that.
10 Q. The last SpaBat document that was shown is P11139, states HVO
11 check-points were set up around Dracevo. To be quite specific, around
12 Dracevo, to keep Arif Pasalic from leaving.
13 General, given the fact that you spent four days in the area,
14 during those four days did any UNPROFOR vehicles enter or, indeed, leave
15 the Dracevo base?
16 A. We couldn't see that. But on the second or third day, a colonel
17 of SpaBat was brought in who had been wounded in Sarajevo. Arif Pasalic
18 and I could see the colonel and agreed immediately that he wouldn't make
19 it. He had been wounded too badly, frankly, which means that there were
20 vehicles going into the Dracevo base and leaving.
21 Q. General, under the assumption that the UNPROFOR vehicles were in
22 a position to leave the Dracevo base, and that Arif Pasalic wanted to
23 leave Dracevo in an UNPROFOR vehicle, could anyone have known that he was
24 inside one of the UNPROFOR vehicles leaving Dracevo?
25 A. He could have got into an APC
1 it, but he couldn't have asked to leave because for the first two days
2 the Spaniards kept us in such a way that it was impossible to do that.
3 Q. If I remember correctly your evidence-in-chief, you and
4 Arif Pasalic attended the Medjugorje meeting on the 12th of May.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Petkovic and Halilovic were there, too; is that right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. General, at the time or at any time after, did Arif Pasalic tell
9 you that he wanted to leave Dracevo but was unable to leave because of
10 some HVO check-points around Dracevo?
11 A. There were no check -- or, rather, nothing was said about that.
12 Q. Can you please repeat your answer?
13 A. Arif Pasalic could not say anything about the check-points,
14 firstly, because he couldn't see any and, secondly, because he had no
15 reason to talk about that. He never mentioned any check-points.
16 Q. Given the fact that at the meeting in Medjugorje on the 12th of
17 May there were also UNPROFOR representatives, for example,
18 General Morillon and other representatives of the international
19 community, at that meeting, or, indeed, at any time after, did anyone, to
20 the best of your knowledge, ever say that the HVO had blocked the
21 UNPROFOR base at Dracevo in order to keep Arif Pasalic from leaving?
22 A. No one ever said that. Sefer, himself, didn't say that. Nothing
23 was said about that at all.
24 Q. The next subject, General, the JNA leaving the Travnik compound.
25 You were asked by Mr. Scott, at 476 --
1 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters couldn't hear the number.
2 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. -- 47684, 684, and then the following three pages, this is
4 roughly what Mr. Scott put to you: He first asked you when the JNA left
5 the Travnik compound. You answered that this occurred on the 6th of May,
6 1992. Mr. Scott then went on to mention to you the meeting between
7 Karadzic and Boban and the agreement they reached in Graz which occurred
8 on the same day. He asked you whether the meeting at Graz, G-r-a-z, and
9 the JNA leaving the Travnik compound were related in any way. Your
10 answer was:
11 "I don't think they were in any way related, but I can't rule out
12 the possibility."
13 Therefore, General, let me show you a number of documents now.
14 The next document in your binder, the number is 4D2016, 4D2016,
15 4D2016 - that's right - this is an overview of the news published by the
16 Croatian Information Centre. I'm only looking at two dates here, and
17 that is the only translation into English that was done. General, please
18 just listen to me. This is extremely brief.
19 General, please pay attention to what I'm about to tell you.
20 The 4th of May, 1992, the following piece of news:
21 "The Presidency of Yugoslavia decided to withdraw the JNA from
22 Bosnia within 15 days ..."
23 The news in relation to the 15th of May, 1992, reads:
24 "In Tuzla, Muslim extremists attacked the convoy of JNA soldiers
25 withdrawing from Bosnia to Serbia. According to unofficial data, about
1 200 soldiers have been killed."
2 And the next document, General, which is just in English, so
3 listen to me - I'll read it out and ask you a question afterwards - it is
4 4D2017, that's the number of the next document, 4D2017 - yes, we have the
5 right number now. Two sections relating to the JNA's withdrawal, chosen
6 at random. The first has to do with Zejnil Delalic, the judgement,
7 paragraph 116, and I'll read it out in English:
8 [In English] "On 4th May 1992, the authorities in Belgrade
9 announced that all JNA personnel who were not citizens of Bosnia and
10 Herzegovina would be withdrawn from the republic by 19 May. In
11 consequence, approximately 14.000 JNA troops left Bosnia and
13 [Interpretation] Now I'm going to speak in B/C/S again for a
15 The next topic was the Prosecutor versus Dusko Tadic, and this
16 fact of the withdrawal of the JNA from the barracks in Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina was the key date for deciding whether or not it was an
18 international conflict or not. And in paragraph 571, opinion and
19 judgement, the fact is presented, and I'm going to read out it in English
21 [In English] "... after the withdrawal of the JNA on 19 May
23 [Interpretation] That's the correct quotation.
24 I have been told to put the date right on page 81, line 3, it
25 should read "the 19th of May."
1 Now, let me ask you this, General: If you remember, did the JNA
2 withdraw just from Travnik or did it withdraw from all the areas of
3 Bosnia-Herzegovina which were not under the control of the Serb
5 A. Your Honours, the withdrawal from Travnik was the result of two
6 or three days of negotiation with the commander. It had nothing to do
7 with the 6th. That was done in the morning, but I had to negotiate with
8 the commander for several days, and that's when an agreement was reached
9 saying that every person leaving should just take their side-arms with
10 them, and all the other details were agreed as well, and also that the
11 most responsible people from Travnik, five on the Muslim side and five on
12 the Croatian side, should be hostages for this column to be allowed to
13 withdraw from one area to an area controlled by the Army of Republika
14 Srpska. I was one of those hostages.
15 Now, the question of whether all the -- whether from all the
16 garrisons -- well, where the JNA was able to organise its withdrawal
17 itself, it probably did so. It probably organised this in Tuzla. I
18 don't know about Tuzla, but it wouldn't have left of its own accord from
19 Travnik had there not been an agreement about their departure.
20 Q. General, we'll analyse all these various elements in due course.
21 What I'm asking you now is whether you're aware of the fact that the JNA
22 left from Sarajevo, Tuzla, and other towns in Bosnia-Herzegovina which
23 were not under the control of the Serbs. And then we'll come to Travnik
24 and the specific conditions there. So that's what I'm asking you.
25 A. I know about it, having learnt about it subsequently. I didn't
1 know about it at the time.
2 Q. And I'd like us to clarify the conditions which you agreed upon
3 with representatives of the JNA in Travnik for the withdrawal, and I'm
4 going to ask you that because the Prosecutor put it to you or suggested
5 an answer according to which the JNA was allowed to leave Travnik with
6 their weapons, and you responded to that and said with side-arms,
7 personal weapons. So I now feel that it's not quite clear what it was,
8 in fact, that you agreed upon as being the conditions for the JNA's
10 What were the soldiers allowed to take with them and what were
11 they not?
12 A. I didn't want to belittle the armed forces to which I had
13 belonged just a few days earlier, so with their side-arms they left the
14 Travnik Garrison with dignity. A Praga and a three-barrelled cannon
15 could not be taken. The mortars that they had could not be taken, and
16 any other larger weapons, larger than side-arms. And that, for officers,
17 were pistols, and, for soldiers, were rifles. Now, for every 10
18 soldiers, one Zolja-type weapon, and nothing more than that.
19 Q. Tell us, please, General, as far as this heavy weaponry is
20 concerned that was left in the JNA barracks, what did you do with that?
21 A. We divided it up with the Muslims 50:50, and we divided up the
22 barracks, everything else. The facilities and everything else was
23 divided up on a 50:50 basis.
24 Q. Tell us, please, did anyone -- any of the soldiers or the Muslims
25 [as interpreted] who were Muslims take part in your negotiations with
1 representatives of the JNA about the withdrawal from the barracks?
2 A. There was Dzemal Merdan and Halid Genjac as the political leaders
3 at the time that we conducted the negotiations about the withdrawal, and
4 the president of the municipality. His name was Tamburic. So that was
5 as far as the Muslim side was concerned.
6 Q. Very well. General, I think that that is all clear now.
7 And now a few clarifications related to the meeting in Busovaca
8 on the 16th of January, 1993, and the speech delivered by Dario Kordic.
9 Yes, I meant to say "1992." I keep saying "3." So 1992 is the
11 Now, let's all look at 4D2018, the next document, please.
12 General, the document is in English, so focus on what I'm saying. I
13 prepared it to make things clear and for us to be able to explain why
14 there was such a lot of heated argument here in the courtroom last
15 Thursday, and perhaps Mr. Scott wasn't clear where the problem lay.
16 So, General, the Prosecutor asked you about Dario Kordic's
17 speech, and he paraphrased Kordic's words. And then it was said that the
18 Croatian people would not be part of any other Croatia. That word,
19 "Croatia," led to a heated reaction because we were -- it was clear to us
20 and we heard that Dario Kordic was speaking about a rump Yugoslavia.
21 And now just to clear this matter up once and for all, all the
22 misunderstandings that occurred: In the transcript from your testimony,
23 Mr. Scott's question was recorded correctly, so Mr. Scott did not say
24 "another Croatia," but he said "other creations," "any other creation"
25 were the words he used, and so due to misunderstandings in the
1 translation there was such heated reaction in the courtroom. So I just
2 wanted us to clear that up.
3 But tell us, General, on that day, the 16th of January, 1993 --
4 A. 1992.
5 Q. Yes, 1992, sorry. Busovaca celebrated the international
6 recognition of the Republic of Croatia; is that right?
7 A. Correct.
8 Q. Now, at that moment the Republic of Slovenia was also outside
9 Yugoslavia; is that also correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. So what did we call the remainder of Yugoslavia when Slovenia and
12 Croatia had stepped down?
13 A. It was referred to as the rump Yugoslavia. As far as I was
14 concerned, it was no longer Yugoslavia at all, in no shape or form.
15 Q. Tell us, General, to the best of your knowledge, what was your
16 attitude and the attitude of the Croats that you knew about the -- about
17 Bosnia-Herzegovina remaining in that kind of rump Yugoslavia?
18 A. Impossible, inconceivable, unimaginable.
19 Q. Tell us, General, the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina, did they use
20 the first opportunity offered to them, which was a referendum in this
21 case, for Bosnia and Herzegovina to step down from the rump Yugoslavia?
22 A. To be an independent state?
23 Q. Yes. So did the Croatians take up that opportunity.
24 A. Yes, they did.
25 Q. Tell us, General, for you, at a time when Bosnia-Herzegovina
1 gained its independence and international recognition, was it clear to
2 you that the borders of Bosnia-Herzegovina, as an independent state,
3 could not be changed by force and could not be changed unless the
4 international community allowed it?
5 A. Without [as interpreted] recognition by the main powers in the
6 world, the borders of Bosnia-Herzegovina became inviolable, as they were
7 everywhere; that is to say, the borders of the republics of the former
9 Q. Okay. Now, General, let's discuss your testimony in the Kordic
10 trial, when you spoke about Dario Kordic. The document is once again in
11 English, so please concentrate on what I'm saying. The number is 4D2019,
12 4D2019. That's right.
13 General, my colleague Mr. Scott put two paragraphs to you from
14 the judgement in the Kordic case, the first-instance judgement, but it
15 wasn't clear to us what those paragraphs referred to. If you will
16 remember, they were paragraphs 585 and 586. Mr. Scott at the time put
17 this to you. He said that the Trial Chamber in the Kordic trial did not
18 lend you its trust and didn't take on board your position whereby
19 Dario Kordic was not a military commander.
20 Now, I want to show that the paragraphs which the Prosecution
21 showed you related to the conflict in Busovaca in January 1993. And as
22 to the conflict in Busovaca, you said in the Kordic trial, on page 17217
23 of the transcript, you said the following, and I'll read it out in
25 [In English] "Are you really telling us that you had had no
1 knowledge of any attack in Busovaca in late January 1993?
2 "A. The attack on Busovaca, from what I knew, was launched by
3 the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Territorial Defence, with a view
4 to taking position -- with a view to taking Busovaca. That was what I
5 know about Busovaca."
6 [Interpretation] Tell us, General -- as far as I've been able to
7 see, that was all you said about the conflicts in Busovaca, when asked by
8 the Prosecution, and this took place in January 1993; is that correct?
9 A. These questions linked to Kordic took me by surprise. I was
10 surprised that the Trial Chamber had not taken into account my testimony,
11 and that they were convicted, and they made me out to be dishonourable
12 for having testified in the Kordic trial. What I'm afraid is that here,
13 during this testimony, all my efforts to help the Trial Chamber in
14 bringing about its decision are going to fall through, and I felt as if I
15 was just a piece of paper sitting here.
16 Q. Yes, I know, General. We'll clarify that, clear all that up
17 later on, but through the facts I'm going to show that the Prosecution
18 put forward an erroneous thesis and that -- and if you would allow me to
19 continue, I wish to show that it was not correct, and I want to show what
20 you actually said, and I want to show that the Trial Chamber in the
21 Kordic trial, in actual fact, did adopt your position.
22 What I want to put to you next is the following: In the appeals
23 judgement, Kordic appeals judgement, the Chamber concluded or, in a way,
24 confirmed the opinions of the first-instance judgement that Kordic was a
25 political leader with military influence, and that, as such, he was
1 involved in the planning and ordering of the crimes that are mentioned.
2 And the crimes that are mentioned are the ones in Busovaca in January
4 Now, linked to Dario Kordic as a politician, wielding a certain
5 amount of military influence, I'm going to put your testimony forward
6 about Blaskic. It is on page 17220 of the transcript from the Kordic
8 The Prosecution put a conversation to you between Blaskic and
9 Kordic which was intercepted, and you commented on that and said that you
10 don't believe that it was true and that it seemed to you to be somebody
11 putting this in as an intercept. Anyway, I'm going to quote what you
12 said, what your answer was, in English:
13 [In English] "To begin with, I am not sure; that is, I don't know
14 if that is a conversation between Blaskic and Kordic. If he has the
15 authority, as you say, then it must have to do with the personal
16 relationship between them."
17 [Interpretation] Or, in other words, you, General, said that if
18 Kordic could have suggested to Blaskic what he should do in a military
19 sense, that it was a question governed by their personal relationships.
20 Do you remember that part of your testimony?
21 A. I testified that the relationship between Kordic and Blaskic,
22 Kiseljak/Busovaca, well, there could have been no contact like that, so
23 that the transcript or whatever it was that I read, after the war in the
24 paper "Slobodna Bosna," that it was construed in some way, fabricated.
25 But what was authentic was the part where they swore, used swear words in
1 their conversation, but that it wasn't realistic as to what was implied
3 Q. General, the transcript reference is 47738. In this trial, you
4 told us, and I'm going to provide a summary in Croatian, that Kordic
5 could not exercise command in the Vitez recruitment area. He was in a
6 position to exert influence over some of the commanders. He did have a
7 certain charisma as well as power in certain situations, but I can also
8 tell you as follows: He was in no position to exercise command in
9 Travnik, Vitez, or, indeed, Novi Travnik. He could not issue orders in
10 Zepce or Lozancic. He couldn't do anything in Kiseljak, in the Kiseljak
11 area. He could not give orders to anyone. I think the remaining portion
12 is not so relevant.
13 General, do you allow for the possibility that Dario Kordic had a
14 significant political influence over people in Central Bosnia?
15 A. He did have political influence over people in Central Bosnia.
16 He got them organised before the election, on the eve of the election and
17 so on and so forth, so he did have a certain amount of influence, but he
18 was not in command, nor indeed could he have been in command, nor indeed
19 did he ever try to be in command. My impression of him as a soldier was
20 that he was a bit like a fashion model, carrying no weapons at all.
21 People were guarding him, but he was no commander, he wasn't the man who
22 was headed straight into the thick of it, the fighting, or indeed anyone
23 giving orders.
24 Q. Another question, and then we'll go back to Kordic.
25 General, when you say "commander," when you say "chain of
1 command," who do you mean; a person who actually holds a rank as a
2 military commander, and the chain construed as going from the top-ranking
3 soldier, trickling down to lower-ranked soldiers?
4 A. "Command" means that someone can and has the right to exercise
5 command. He has some people below him, and those below him are under an
6 obligation to carry out the other man's orders. That is what I would
7 mean by "chain of command."
8 Q. General, what would you say about the following situation: We
9 know that the HVO had brigades and that the brigades were more or less
10 based on the existing municipalities. For example, a brigade commander
11 attends a morning meeting or coffee on a daily basis. He goes to the
12 president of the HVO in that particular municipality for that meeting.
13 Other people are also there who hold certain offices in that
14 municipality. The brigade commander likes to hear what the opinions are
15 of the local civilian leader. He's inclined to act in keeping with the
16 civilian leader's wishes. And now my question. This local leader, in
17 your opinion, does he have a place in the chain of command?
18 A. Command is one thing. Influence over commanders is a different
19 thing. Grubesic could have got in touch with Kordic, or Blaskic could
20 have got in touch with Kordic. They could have acted on that. But he
21 was always the commander, Kordic, or Grubesic in Busovaca.
22 Q. Let us go back to the hypothetical level as I first presented it.
23 This would mean that the local civilian leader is not part of the chain
24 of command?
25 A. That's right, he is not a part of that chain.
1 Q. This fact, him not being a part of the chain of command, if
2 that's what the circumstances were, does this change anything about the
3 fact that the local political leader has effective power and that he may
4 make suggestions to the commander as to what to do and what course of
5 action should be taken?
6 A. He has power. He has the power to influence certain
7 developments. He proposes that something be done. He criticises the
8 fact that a step was not taken or a measure was not taken. But we're
9 still at the level of political influence. This does not constitute
11 Q. All right. In a bid to sum up the role of this local politician,
12 would it, in your opinion, be fair to say that he is no military
13 commander, he is not a part of the chain of command, but he does have
14 power and he can exert influence on political developments in his
16 A. Take the example of Travnik. Mr. Tamburic blames me because the
17 compound was taken or something. He has influence. He wields this
18 influence and exerts pressure. He tries to get things his own way, to
19 have things his own way, but he's in no position to order me to do
21 Q. All right. Let us go back to Dario Kordic and everything that's
22 been said about him so far.
23 If my understanding of your evidence is correct, we could say, in
24 relation to Dario Kordic, that he was no military commander, he was not a
25 part of the chain of command, but he did have certain power, and he was
1 in a position to influence certain military commanders; would that be
3 A. He had a lot of power and, yes, he was in a position to influence
4 commanders by using his personal influence.
5 Q. Let us now have a look at what the Appeals Chamber of this trial
6 decided in the Kordic case about Kordic, himself. The Chamber did not
7 conclude that he was a military commander or, indeed, a part of the chain
8 of command; rather, it concluded that he was a political leader with a
9 degree of military influence. Because of his de facto influence, he can
10 be held responsible in relation to certain things that happened. My
11 conclusion is that the Trial Chamber arrived at the exactly the same
12 conclusion as you, general, about the possible role of a civilian
13 official or, indeed, his influence on military commanders.
14 A. Right, they kept asking me questions about command, and I said he
15 was not in command and he was in no position to be in command.
16 Q. General, we need to draw a distinction between command, on the
17 one hand, and external effective control over military commanders.
18 A. I am a commander. I set the notion of command quite apart from
19 anything else.
20 Q. My next subject is about the organigram that the OTP showed you.
21 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me, Mr. President. Before counsel continues
22 and just if I could have one brief intervention. I've been, I think,
23 pretty good about not getting on my feet. Since a rather serious
24 allegation is being made about my alleged mis-characterisation of the
25 record, I just want to make the record clear, and I'm looking at the
1 document that counsel has marked 4D02019.
2 We've now, in the last some minutes, heard all sorts of things
3 about Mr. Filipovic's further testimony in the Kordic case. However --
4 and if you look -- if you look at the right side of the page, down below
5 the appeals judgement, there are references to a number of transcript
6 references, starting with 17051. I waited, because I wanted to make sure
7 I didn't jump the gun, to see what counsel -- if counsel would cover it,
8 but I have to point out for the record that the one citation she doesn't
9 deal with and hasn't dealt with this afternoon is the specific citation
10 by the Kordic Trial Chamber.
11 When you look at the left side of the page, what the Trial
12 Chamber said was:
13 "To this end, a great deal of evidence was called to show that
14 Kordic played no military part in the conflict and simply wished to help
15 his people. The Defence relies on this evidence in respect of Kordic's
16 alleged role in the Busovaca conflict; footnote 1069."
17 If we go to 1069 at the lower part of the page:
18 "Many witnesses gave evidence of this, including military
19 commands and others; Major General Filip Filipovic at transcript
20 page 17045."
21 Not a page that counsel has dealt with on the right side of the
22 page. And at P -- and at transcript page 17045, the citation given by
23 the Trial Chamber -- the Kordic Trial Chamber and which the Kordic Trial
24 Chamber rejected was his -- this testimony of the witness.
25 I said that Mr. Kordic never had command over any military unit
1 in the Central Bosnia Operative Zone. That's exactly what was cited by
2 the Kordic Trial Chamber, and not these other items on the page. I
3 simply want the record to be clear.
4 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, there's no need to
5 interpret this. I understand my learned friend Mr. Scott would want
6 something like this to appear on the record, but it's perfectly clear
7 that there is not a single statement by General Filipovic here about the
8 clashes in Busovaca in January 1993 that might back or corroborate what
9 my learned friend is saying. I do think this is crystal clear. Anyway,
10 therefore, I shall not dwell on it any longer.
11 Q. General, we spoke about this organigram used by General Petkovic
12 in the Blaskic case. This is P11123.
13 As we're waiting for the document to come up on our screens, I
14 would like to point out that the English translation of this document is
15 insufficient in one particularly important aspect. The link between the
16 commander-in-chief and the Main Staff is missing, and it is a direct link
17 which bypasses the Defence Department. There is a link between the
18 commander-in-chief and the Main Staff. The Croatian document shows that
19 very clearly. In the English document, the link is missing. Therefore,
20 I think it should be corrected, because it just might prove very
21 important further down the road in this case.
22 General, you were asked something about re-subordination in
23 relation to this document. Among other questions, you were asked who you
24 would report to or who you would get in touch, for example, with in your
25 Travnik Brigade if you wanted an element of the Convicts Battalion to
1 come out and help you. The Convicts Battalion, if we look at this chart,
2 is only linked to the commander-in-chief, and no one else? You said that
3 in a technical sense, you would send a request by packet communications
4 or a different type of equipment, you would send it on through to the
5 Main Staff.
6 Judge Antonetti then went on to state:
7 "Therefore, it would be natural for you to go through the
8 Main Staff to achieve this."
9 My question for you, General: If the Convicts Battalion was only
10 subordinated to the commander-in-chief of the HVO and no one else, who,
11 then, would have had the power to make a decision regarding the
12 re-subordination of a component unit of the Convicts Battalion, for
13 example, to the Vitez operations area?
14 A. First of all, it would never have occurred to me, never have
15 crossed my mind, to ask for the assistance of the Convicts Battalion.
16 But if I'd needed the services of another unit holding the same position
17 as the Convicts Battalion, again, technically, I would have gone through
18 the Main Staff. Who could the decision have been taken by, as the chart
19 shows; by the command-in-chief.
20 Q. Very well. Thank you, General, that's quite sufficient for my
21 purposes. Now a very brief question about today's evidence.
22 There was a brief mention of men fit for military service. There
23 was a short document bearing the name of General Petkovic. It was said
24 that those men should be kept in Sovici and Doljani. My question,
25 General: Were these men fit for military service under a military
2 A. Yes, they were.
3 Q. At a time of war, these military conscripts, are they active
4 forces or reserve forces? Do they actively contribute to the defence of
5 their countries or are they considered to be civilians?
6 A. In Bosnia-Herzegovina or in the area in which I happened to be,
7 everyone was a military conscript. And they could be assigned to a
8 civilian posts as well, but the military duty was incumbent equally upon
10 Q. If they weren't assigned to some sort of work assignment or
11 something else, such as a post in the Civilian Protection, they were an
12 active service army; right?
13 A. Yes, they belonged to one of the units in the active service.
14 Q. You were asked today, General, what you, as a military commander,
15 would have done had one of your soldiers set fire to a house or, indeed,
16 committed any sort of criminal offence. You said you would have had them
17 detained. General, your answer assumes that you actually know who the
18 perpetrator was, who set fire to a house or who committed a crime. I'm
19 asking you now: In your capacity as a military commander, would you have
20 launched an investigation in a situation in which the perpetrator
21 remained unknown, you don't know who it was who set fire to a house or
22 committed a crime?
23 A. When we talk about taking measures, we assume that the measures
24 will be effective, that my life is not at risk in any way. When
25 Dzemal Merdan came to the village of Jelinak with us, the commission and
1 the command, finding the same sort of situation that probably prevailed
2 in Santici or Ahmici, we see soldiers there setting fire to houses, we
3 see dead bodies. The people involved are attacking Dzemal Merdan, and
4 had the Cheshire Battalion soldiers not protected him, they would have
5 killed him. What could a commanding officer possibly do in a situation
6 like that?
7 When Dzemal Merdan, a high-ranking BH Army officer, said, What on
8 earth are you doing, we have the international community here, they
9 attacked him with rifles. And had it not been for him being protected by
10 the British Battalion, they would have killed him. This gives you an
11 idea of what a high-ranking or low-ranking military officer can do, and
12 this idea is necessarily a relative one because it relates to what is
13 actually going on and what actually went on in my area.
14 Q. I'm not asking you anything about the actual possibilities, but
15 what somebody's duty-bound to do.
16 A. They are duty-bound to prevent something which is not --
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, quickly, because I
18 would like your testimony to end today - we have 20 minutes left and
19 still some topics to broach - but, quickly, I'm just hearing about what
20 happened with Mr. Merdan, where soldiers wanted to kill him, and he was
21 fortunately saved by the intervention of the BritBat. Well, that's fine,
22 but while I was listening to you, I was thinking about the rebellion in
23 1917 where rogue soldiers had decided not to go and fight during World
24 War I, and generals at that time, just like generals like you, had
25 decided to set up martial courts and to try these soldiers, and then
1 execute them immediately. Couldn't you set up a martial court and try
2 these soldiers that were attacking Mr. Merdan, under your very own eyes
3 and the eyes of the international community? Weren't you able to do
4 that? Didn't you have the competence to do that?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Impossible, impossible, to set up a
6 court-martial, nor was there any court-martial in Bosnia-Herzegovina as
7 far as I know. What you could perhaps do was to engage the Intervention
8 Platoon which was more under the control of a commander, or the military
9 police if it was further away from the front, because the military police
10 is not up at the front. So at a later stage, once the soldier was no
11 longer at the place where the event had occurred.
12 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. General, tell us, please, whose soldiers tried to
14 kill Mr. Merdan?
15 A. The members of the Territorial Defence, I think those of the 7th
16 Muslim Brigade -- as I was saying, members of the Territorial Defence
17 cleansed the village of Jelinak, and we came to solve the issue, and that
18 was that particular event.
19 Q. Now, General, a brief explanation about some documents
20 particularly with respect to Mr. Roso and Blaskic, dating to May 1992,
21 with the subject of the HVO being the only legal entity, now which one of
22 the two was legal, the HVO or the BH Army, or whatever.
23 Now, the Prosecutor showed you a series of documents ending with
24 one dated the 11th of May dealing with that subject. If you go back to
25 the agreement about friendship and co-operation, think back, which on the
1 21st of July, 1992, was signed by Alija Izetbegovic and Franjo Tudjman,
2 which is document P339, my question to you is this: In that document,
3 for the first time it says loud and clear that the HVO and the BH Army
4 are equally components of the armed forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Now,
5 my question to you is this, General: To the best of your knowledge, any
6 time afterwards, as presented by the Prosecution, as put to you by the
7 Prosecution, was there a discussion about whether the HVO was the legal
8 and legitimate military force of the Croatian people in
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina, but also of the Muslims and everybody else who wished
10 to take part in combat?
11 A. Yes, but that was in July 1992. That particular agreement was a
12 correct and proper agreement, as far as the situation on the ground was
13 concerned, although at the same time there were attempts to do things
14 beyond -- that went beyond this agreement.
15 Q. Very well. Now a brief question, General, just to avoid any
17 My colleague Mr. Scott put it to you -- or, rather, suggested an
18 answer to this effect: that the HVO was an organised and significant
19 military force in 1992, at the end of 1992, in actual fact. And that is
20 on transcript page 47696 -- 46696 [as interpreted]. And you went on to
21 explain that there was a difference in relation to April 1992. So I want
22 to ask you something now linked to a portion of your testimony in the
23 Kordic trial, recorded on page 17017 of the transcript, where you say
24 that there wasn't enough time to establish full military organisation and
25 that you -- one needed some time in peace and then another year or two in
1 order to establish an army in the proper sense of the word, a real army.
2 Now, to the best of your knowledge, General, what would you say?
3 When did the HVO become an organised army capable of carrying out attack
4 and defence assignments which could be considered organised in the sense
5 of a professional modern army?
6 A. We had an army, and I've already said that, only as of 1994, and
7 just a part of an army, in actual fact, because we had guards brigades
8 that were being established, and there were manoeuvre units, and you
9 could go on assignment with the proper unit only in 1994.
10 Q. General Filipovic, one of the ways in which the Prosecution
11 attempted to shake the Trial Chamber's trust and confidence in your
12 testimony was your alleged statement to the HINA agency with respect to
13 the indictment raised against the six Croats from Central Bosnia. To the
14 best of your recollection, the first indictments that were raised by the
15 Prosecution of this Tribunal against Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina were
16 exclusively from Central Bosnia; right?
17 A. Not only Croats, but the first 20 indictments -- within the first
18 20 indictments, there were 15 indictments against Croats, and that was
19 quite surprising and astonishing when I realised that. And when you look
20 at the number of years people were sentenced to, terms of imprisonment,
21 that was quite astounding, too; at least it was to me, because as I said,
22 we put up a pure defence, a crime had been committed. Unfortunately, in
23 my state of Bosnia-Herzegovina, there were a lot of crimes committed by
24 Muslim, Serbs, and Croats, crimes to each other and, especially, victims
25 on the part from the international community that had come to help out
1 the country, help my country out, and they ended up losing their lives,
2 they were killed or they were belittled or whatever. And so in that
3 sense, the Lasva Valley could not have been the centre of these negative
4 events that took place within this country of mine that was
6 Q. Now, General, you started answering a question of mine, and I
7 said we'll deal with that in due course. So to wind up now, Mr. Scott
8 tried to compromise you as a witness by saying that you were a Defence
9 witness for Dario Kordic in the trial -- in the Kordic trial held at this
10 Tribunal. Tell me, General, what do you think about that? What do you
11 think about it, when a Defence witness -- when they try to discredit a
12 witness merely through the fact of his being a witness for the Defence?
13 A. That's a terrible message, a message sent out, that a witness
14 testified in a case when the accused stood trial and were found guilty.
15 That's a terrible message. It's something that I was really shaken to
17 MR. SCOTT: I apologise for the interruption. I'm sorry, but I'm
18 not going to allow --
19 [Overlapping speakers]
20 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] May we allow the witness --
21 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me, I'm not going to allow my --
22 MS. ALABURIC: [Overlapping speakers]... finish the answer. The
23 witness didn't finish the answer.
24 MR. SCOTT: Yes, he did. Yes, he did.
25 MS. ALABURIC: He did not.
1 MR. SCOTT: Well, then I'll wait. Then I will wait. But, I do
2 want to address the matter. That's -- that statement against me cannot
3 simply be allowed to stand. That was not our position, that was never my
4 position, but I'll let the witness answer first.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour --
6 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Tell us, please, Witness, how did you experience this and what
8 did you think?
9 A. Your Honours, my overall impressions from that is that part of
10 this Tribunal, the Prosecution sees his work --
11 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat his answer?
12 Could the witness be asked to repeat his answer. Thank you.
13 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Repeat that, General, please, for the record. It wasn't
15 recorded. The interpreters didn't hear you.
16 A. This Tribunal -- well, the witness is lost in all the cacophony
17 of voices, procedure, and so on. I said that the Prosecution is Caesar's
18 wife; she cannot be thought to do wrong.
19 MS. ALABURIC: "Caesar's wife." "Caesar," C-a-e --
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Scott, what did you have to
22 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Well, first of all on the last point, I've never known anyone in
24 this institution to be the slightest bit reluctant to criticise the
25 Prosecution for anything, and so I don't know anything about being
1 Caesar's wife, but that's not been my experience.
2 Secondly, Your Honour, that mis-characterises -- more
3 importantly, that mis-characterises the Prosecution's position, in
4 particular my position. I --
5 THE WITNESS: [No interpretation]
6 MR. SCOTT: Excuse me, excuse me.
7 I never took the position, I have never taken the position, I
8 don't expect to ever take the position, that a witness's testimony should
9 be questioned simply because he or she came to testify for the Defence.
10 That is not my position. I raise a separate, different issue in terms of
11 the nature of his specific testimony in the Kordic case, the evidence
12 that he was confronted with to the contrary, and the Trial Chamber's
13 assessment of his evidence. I have never taken the position, I will
14 never take the position, that a witness should be adjudged less credible
15 simply because he was called for one side or the other. And to
16 characterise my position as that is not correct. Thank you.
17 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. And my final question: Witness, if you remember, Mr. Scott said
19 that you had testified for Dario Kordic and that you considered
20 Dario Kordic to be a hero. You tried to explain to him that as far as
21 you were concerned, for you Dario Kordic was not a hero, and you tried to
22 explain why you agreed to be a witness for Dario Kordic's Defence, but
23 you weren't able to finish your thoughts. So tell us now, in your
24 opinion, as far as you're concerned, is Dario Kordic a hero, and why did
25 you go to testify for Dario Kordic?
1 A. Your Honours, in the Kordic trial, in this particular trial, and
2 when Alagic was accused, I offered to come forward and testify because I
3 lived during the time when all that was going on, and I wanted to assist
4 the Court in uncovering the truth and making their serious decision.
5 Now, Kordic, a hero? Well, he cannot be a hero, as far as I'm
7 Q. And my last question, General, is this: Tell us, please, in your
8 opinion, as far as you're concerned, at any time during the conflict with
9 the BH Army was the dilemma with -- was there a dilemma whether you were
10 defending Bosnia-Herzegovina or not?
11 A. Your Honours, all my efforts, before and now, were for
12 Bosnia-Herzegovina. I did not defend Bosnia-Herzegovina in some imagined
13 or recognised form, but as life and civilisation in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
14 I think that was my duty, because I was a professional. Now, I could
15 have pulled out. I had a way of not being involved. But from one day to
16 the next, I was engaged in the defence of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
17 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, General Filipovic. And
18 that concludes my re-examination.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, your testimony is now
20 over. I would like to thank you, on behalf of my fellow Judges and
21 myself, to have come here to The Hague for the Defence of
22 General Petkovic and to help us elicit the truth. I wish you the best
23 and a safe return home, and I will ask our usher to please escort you out
24 of the courtroom.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, may I be allowed to
1 say something briefly?
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, if you want to tell
3 us -- to ask us whether we heard you, fine. But if you want to make
4 speeches on this trial, this is not the right forum for this.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I was always greeted,
6 both by the Prosecution and the Trial Chamber in the Tribunal. I would
7 like to say thank you to the Tribunal for giving me the opportunity of
8 giving you my visions of the problems that my country faced.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
10 [The witness withdrew]
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic, I hope the
12 witness is ready for tomorrow morning. Is everything okay?
13 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, the witness was
14 already here in court, but we sent him back to his hotel. But, yes, he
15 is ready and will appear tomorrow morning.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
17 Mr. Kovacic, is Mr. Praljak ill? Why is he not with us in the
19 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Mr. Praljak is tired. I can't say
20 he is sick. He's just tired and said he'd prefer not to come in. He
21 says he's not feeling very well, so that's why.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. We hope that he
23 will soon get better and we'll have him in the courtroom tomorrow.
24 I thank you all. Have a pleasant evening, and we'll resume
25 tomorrow at 9.00 a.m.
1 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.57 p.m.,
2 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 8th day of
3 December, 2009, at 9.00 a.m.