Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 49657

 1                           Thursday, 18 February 2010

 2                           [Open session]

 3                           [The accused entered court]

 4                           [The accused Petkovic takes the stand]

 5                           --- Upon commencing at 2.18 p.m.

 6             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The court is back in session.

 7             Registrar, could you please call the case.

 8             THE REGISTRAR:  Good afternoon, Your Honours.  Good afternoon,

 9     everyone in and around the courtroom.

10             This is case number IT-04-74-T, the Prosecutor versus Prlic et

11     al.  Thank you, Your Honours.

12             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Registrar.

13             Today is Thursday, the 18th of February, 2010.  I would like to

14     first greet General Petkovic, our witness for today.  I would like to

15     greet the accused, as well as the Defence teams, and Mr. Scott and all

16     his fellow OTP members.  And I would also like to greet everyone in the

17     courtroom.

18             First of all, I would like to tell Mr. Kovacic, who asked the

19     question as to whether or when I would put forward my dissenting opinion

20     regarding the decision to admit evidence or exhibits.  You know that

21     quite a few exhibits were rejected by the majority of the Chamber, and

22     therefore I would like to issue a dissenting opinion.  Unfortunately, I

23     did not have time to finish this opinion, because yesterday and the day

24     before yesterday I was in this courtroom from 9.00 until 7.00 p.m., and I

25     also had to prepare the questions that I will put to General Petkovic.

Page 49658

 1     Obviously, I will put forward my dissenting opinion next week, either

 2     Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday.  But as the Trial Chamber said, the time

 3     you will have will be from the time you receive the translation, so there

 4     is really no urgency and you don't really need it within 24 hours,

 5     because you will have two weeks from the date at which you will receive

 6     the translation of this document.  It seems that there is a typing

 7     mistake regarding my opinion on the document, but I haven't really looked

 8     at the number.  But I will let you know what number it is.

 9             So this is what I wanted to say to Mr. Kovacic.

10             Mr. Scott, I believe you wanted to take the floor.

11             MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] If I may, Your Honour, I'd like to

12     express my gratitude for the information you've just given me, and I hope

13     you didn't take our request as in any way hurrying you.  We just wanted

14     to be sure that the document would appear.  Of course, I know that you

15     need time, so thank you.

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

17             Mr. Scott, please.

18             MR. SCOTT:  Good afternoon, Mr. President.  Good afternoon, all

19     of Your Honours.  Good afternoon, Counsel, all those in and around the

20     courtroom.

21             Your Honour, there's one matter that the Prosecution thinks must

22     be raised today and at the beginning of the session, before Ms. Alaburic

23     completes her direct examination of Mr. Petkovic, and I want to preface

24     my comments by saying as someone who's been a courtroom advocate for

25     quite some years now, I'm not unsympathetic to the difficulty of the task

Page 49659

 1     involved.

 2             Having said that, and I don't think this is a concern unique

 3     necessarily to the Prosecution - the co-accused may share the concern and

 4     perhaps the Chamber will share the concern - given the constraints of

 5     time in the case, which are considerable and we've all dealt with,

 6     I think Ms. Alaburic dealt with some topics -- some central topics, if

 7     I can call them that way, very fundamental topics, in a very brief, some

 8     might even say cursory, fashion yesterday.  Again, given the time-limits,

 9     the rush of time, that might be understandable to some extent.

10             Let me give the Chamber three specific examples to make it less

11     abstract and more specific.

12             One was the topic -- actually, two topics, the April 1993

13     ultimatum, which everyone in the courtroom is well familiar with, and the

14     events in Prozor at the end of October 1992.  Those two topics were dealt

15     with by Mr. Petkovic in a total -- a total of 18 lines -- 18 transcript

16     lines of testimony.  The question of the camps and detention, that topic

17     and a very important aspect of that topic was dealt with in four lines of

18     testimony, four lines of testimony.  And let me give you a specific

19     example on what that was.

20             Here's the question.  This is at page 49577-49578 of the

21     transcript:

22             "Q.  In your conversation with the supreme commander of the HVO,

23     did you mention the facilities of where these isolated Muslim HVO

24     soldiers and able-bodied Muslim men could find accommodation?"

25             Mr. Petkovic's answer, four lines:

Page 49660

 1             "A.  Yes, he said that the HVO had facilities that can put up

 2     this number of men and that it was up to the army to disarm these men in

 3     the safest manner, and everybody else was somebody -- oh, sorry,

 4     everything else was for someone else to take care of."

 5             "Everything else was for someone else to take care of."

 6             Your Honour, that's a question that begs -- that goes to the

 7     heart of much of the case, and I suspect Mr. Petkovic must have a view --

 8     a fuller view of what that means.  And I suspect that both the

 9     Prosecution and the co-accused would like to know what that case is

10     before their examinations begin.  Certainly, someone was responsible.

11     These camps were not run by themselves.  That's just one example.

12             Third example, Your Honour, was the questions of military

13     discipline and justice.  That was taken also very briefly.  The Chamber

14     may recall some sensitivity, I think someone described it yesterday, when

15     a number of Defence counsel, the co-accused, were on their feet about

16     leading questions, that this was a sensitive topic.  It was again taken

17     in a very brief manner.

18             Now, what that leads me to, Your Honour, I wanted to give the

19     Chamber some specific examples of what I'm talking about.  But here's the

20     concern, here's the concern:  Ms. Alaburic several times in the last few

21     days has raised that, Well, to the effect -- and I'm paraphrasing, so

22     counsel, please, I'm not quoting, I'm paraphrasing, although I will refer

23     to some parts of the transcript.  Ms. Alaburic's position has been to the

24     effect, largely, that, Well, if I don't deal with it now, I'll deal with

25     it in redirect.  And I'm afraid, Your Honours, that things simply don't

Page 49661

 1     work that way.

 2             Let me just refer to a couple of times.

 3             On Tuesday, page 49478, at line 11, Ms. Alaburic says:

 4             "And one more thing.  We have established that 20 to 25 per cent

 5     of the time is used for follow-up questions to the questions of the

 6     Judges.  That is why we decided not to put any follow-up questions during

 7     our examination-in-chief, but, rather, anything that we consider very

 8     important will be left for redirect examination."

 9             The second time on Tuesday at transcript page 49482,

10     Ms. Alaburic, addressing Mr. Petkovic, said:

11             "General, if you remember, yesterday we broke off while you were

12     looking at a map of Mostar on the 30th of June, 1993.  I'm not going to

13     ask any questions about that map now.  I'll do that in the redirect

14     examination."

15             Reference number 3, also on Tuesday, at page 49511 to 49512,

16     Ms. Alaburic:

17             "I would like the topic raised by Judge Trechsel --"

18             Excuse me:

19             "The topic raised by Judge Trechsel is very important, and it's a

20     comprehensive topic, and we will deal with it in the redirect."

21             Then Mr. Coric at one point intervened, and expressing his

22     concern about the number of important topics that it appears may be left

23     to redirect, and on that point I must say that I share Mr. Coric's views.

24             Following Mr. Coric's views, and I won't read his part of the

25     transcript, but I think the Chamber will recall the several interventions

Page 49662

 1     that Mr. Coric made on the topic, Ms. Alaburic then responded to

 2     Mr. Coric and again made a reference to the fact -- and ended her

 3     comments -- or toward the end of her comments saying this:

 4             "However, if such topics as haven't been covered in the

 5     examination-in-chief, I preserve the right to deal with that in

 6     redirect."

 7             And as I said, Your Honour, unfortunately the trial process

 8     doesn't and can't work that way.  You can't say a couple of words, take a

 9     topic or a subject in a very brief -- highly brief, highly limited

10     manner, in the sense of putting your marker down, and then saying, I'll

11     come back to it on a redirect examination, after all the other parties

12     have had their turn.  That's, unfortunately -- or otherwise, it just

13     doesn't work that way.

14             Your Honour, the Prosecution has thought about this overnight,

15     and this came to our attention as we thought about it yesterday, as we

16     reviewed the transcripts over the last two days last evening.  There's

17     really, I suppose, a couple of possibilities: either Ms. Alaburic has to

18     be given some sort of reasonable time to address the topics in a full way

19     so that all the parties, the Chamber, the parties, the Prosecution, the

20     co-accused, could all go into their examinations with confidence that the

21     topic has been fairly and fully dealt with, or, I suppose, Ms. Alaburic

22     would have to give some kind of a commitment that she said as much as she

23     can say and will not come back to it in redirect.  I don't know that

24     that's a workable solution.  Or, number 3, following the redirect

25     examination, as the Chamber has provided for in its guide-lines dated the

Page 49663

 1     24th of April, 2008, the other scenario is the Chamber would have to

 2     provide -- would need to provide additional opportunity for the other

 3     parties then to have further examination following the redirect

 4     examination.

 5             The core position, Your Honour, is that, again, you can't raise

 6     topics very briefly on direct examination and, as I said, reserve the

 7     opportunity then to address them more fully once you get to redirect.

 8     That's the issue, and I lay it before the Chamber's attention, please.

 9             Thank you.

10             MR. STEWART:  Well, Your Honour, there are really two things

11     which need to be carefully distinguished here.  They are connected, but

12     nevertheless need to be kept separately.  The first is the question of

13     redirect examination or re-examination, as I normally call it; same

14     thing.

15             It's quite clear that re-examination or redirect has to be on

16     matters which arise out of cross-examination.  That's absolutely implicit

17     and understood in everything that Ms. Alaburic has said in every

18     reference to re-examination, tested by the extreme case -- if there is no

19     cross-examination, and we can't force anybody to cross-examine - they've

20     just got the time and the opportunity to do it - if there's no

21     cross-examination, there's no redirect examination.  There can't be.  So,

22     of course it's implicit.  Let's say we take our chances.  We're not in

23     court to gamble as Mr. Petkovic's advocates, but we are here to form

24     judgements on his behalf, and to that extent we take our chances.  If the

25     matters are explored in cross-examination so that we can legitimately

Page 49664

 1     then go to them in redirect examination, then that's what we can do.  If

 2     they are not raised or if, in redirect examination, we attempt to go

 3     outside the proper scope of that phase of the examination, then an

 4     objection to those questions would be legitimate and would be expected to

 5     be upheld, and that would be an end to the matter.  And there really

 6     isn't any more to it than that.

 7             The other strand, which is where Mr. Scott started, is a

 8     different point, which is that we should have gone more into

 9     particular -- leave aside the redirect point.  We should have gone more

10     into particular topics in examination-in-chief.  Well, Your Honours, with

11     the greatest respect to Mr. Scott and the co-accused, the other Defences,

12     what questions they ask in cross-examination is a decision for them.

13     What questions we ask in examination-in-chief is a decision for us.  And,

14     actually, it would be no solution, anyway, for the Trial Chamber to say,

15     at Mr. Scott's request, Petkovic Defence, you can have another hour, if

16     we actually don't want to ask any questions during that hour.  We'd say,

17     Well, thank you very much, we've had that other hour, but actually those

18     are the questions we want to ask, we'll see what the cross-examination

19     is, and so far as we need or wish, on Mr. Petkovic's behalf, to

20     re-examine based on that cross-examination, that's what we will do.

21             And, Your Honour, the fundamental position is we didn't have to

22     call Mr. Petkovic at all.  Of course, we didn't have to call any witness.

23     We didn't have to call Mr. Petkovic.  When we do put Mr. Petkovic in the

24     witness box, naturally he's exposed to cross-examination, but that's part

25     and parcel of it.  But what we ask him, then, in his evidence is up to

Page 49665

 1     us.  If the Trial Chamber wishes to explore matters further, of course,

 2     you can always.  Cross-examination within the legitimate bounds can be

 3     done by the parties having the right to cross-examine, and then we get on

 4     to redirect in exactly the way that I've described.

 5             So there is, in the end, nothing at all in this point.  We should

 6     simply proceed.

 7             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours, and

 8     good afternoon to everybody else.

 9             May I add another element, and I have, of course, discussed this

10     with Mr. Nicholas Stewart.  We decided that I should tell you about this

11     portion.

12             I consider that I don't need to convince anybody in this

13     courtroom that the Trial Chamber is in charge of these proceedings and

14     that they know full well what the rules are governing re-examination, and

15     that the distinguished Trial Chamber has the right to interrupt any

16     re-examination which is contrary to the rules of re-examination.  I don't

17     think that there's any reason not to believe Judge Antonetti -- not to

18     believe that he is fully capable of conducting these proceedings

19     according to the Rules and that he won't allow anybody in this courtroom

20     to examine contrary to the Rules.  So as far as I'm concerned, there's no

21     possibility here of doing something in re-examination that they don't

22     have the right to do, according to the Rules of this Tribunal and the

23     guide-lines which the Trial Chamber has adopted.

24             At this point in time, the question that arises is this, and it's

25     going to be relevant to other Defence teams when they conduct their

Page 49666

 1     examination:  What are the rights of a Defence team with respect to --

 2     during direct with a respect to questions from the Bench, from Their

 3     Honours?  If you remember, the Defence of General Milivoj Petkovic wanted

 4     the Trial Chamber to make a ruling so that they could see what the rights

 5     of other Defence teams are to react to the answers given in response to

 6     questions by the Trial Chamber.

 7             THE INTERPRETER:  Could counsel kindly slow down, please.  Thank

 8     you.

 9             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I think that practice in this

10     courtroom has shown that the Judges can ask questions and do ask

11     questions when they wish to do that, and to ask as many questions as they

12     like, and we agree to that.  That's not contentious.

13             Now, the question is:  What can be done with respect to the

14     Judges' questions if Defence counsel conducting the examination feels

15     that something has been left unsaid with respect to that question?  And

16     there are two possibilities open there: to ask follow-up questions in

17     that regard and spend time that was intended for in chief, outside the

18     plans drawn up for in-chief examination, without the desire of the

19     accused, or the witnesses, or the Defence counsel that prepared the

20     examination; and the alternative to this is not to enter into a debate

21     about the topics raised by the Judges' questions, but to behave towards

22     the Judges' questions as one would behave towards questions raised during

23     the cross-examination in general.

24             It is my opinion that each Defence team should have the right to

25     respond and to add to the topics that were raised through the Judges'

Page 49667

 1     questions, that that is a legitimate right, and that they can clarify

 2     that in re-examination.  But after that, all the other Defence teams also

 3     have the right to re-cross-examine if, in that way, the questions of the

 4     interests of their clients are raised.  And in my opinion, that is the

 5     only logical solution and the only fair solution.  And if we recall the

 6     ruling made by the Trial Chamber with respect to Judges' questions, which

 7     is a recognised right for other Defence teams to react and, thus, defend

 8     the interests of their clients, and if, through the Judges' questions and

 9     answers to those questions, in a way it affects the interests of one of

10     the accused, then there's no dilemmas, as far as I'm concerned.

11             Now, if the honourable Trial Chamber makes another ruling and

12     says that in re-examination no Defence team has the right to go back to

13     the Judges' questions and deal with them, then I would like to ask the

14     Trial Chamber to make a ruling and decision whereby no Defence team, in

15     its cross-examination -- does not have the right to refer to Judges'

16     questions, and so the Judges' questions will remain as they were asked,

17     as they stand.

18             So this is obviously a subject that must be dealt with.  And as

19     far as I can say, it can be dealt with in any way -- any of these ways

20     that I have put forward.

21             The Defence of General Petkovic will, of course, respect any

22     ruling made by the Trial Chamber.  All I can say is that I regret having

23     to talk about this 17 minutes before the close of the

24     examination-in-chief of General Petkovic.

25             Now, as regards the request made by Mr. Scott for additional

Page 49668

 1     time, this time we are absolutely opposed to that because, at the

 2     beginning of the examination-in-chief of General Petkovic, we decided

 3     about matters of time, we established the rules and regulations for these

 4     proceedings, and General Petkovic began his testimony under those

 5     conditions.  And, therefore, I consider that those conditions must

 6     absolutely be upheld and cannot be changed during his examination.

 7             Thank you.

 8             MR. KARNAVAS:  Mr. President, if I may be heard just for a

 9     second.  I try to stay out of these sorts of procedural issues whenever

10     I can.

11             Mr. Scott used one particular word that I thought was rather

12     telling, and that was "confidence."  That was the word, I believe, that

13     he used.  Whenever one goes into cross-examination, they have to have

14     confidence that what they're about to cross-examine, the topics have been

15     covered fully and fairly, and that what will follow from

16     cross-examination, that is, redirect examination, will only be strictly

17     for rebuttal purposes, that is, for anything that might have come up

18     during the cross-examination purposes.

19             Now, I understand the dilemma that everybody's having, and

20     I think that the safest way to approach this -- the safest way to

21     approach this is to simply allow all counsel to have re-cross-examination

22     as a matter of practice.  That way, by doing that - and we have that

23     practice in the United States - this is to prevent counsel from, on

24     direct examination, doing a little bit waiting for redirect in order to

25     sort of what we call sandbag the other side.  By allowing

Page 49669

 1     re-cross-examination, it then allows -- it forces the party who goes

 2     forward to actually put all their cards up front, and that avoids any

 3     last-minute, you know, need for re-cross-examination.

 4             In any event, I think all of us are concerned.  Ms. Alaburic has

 5     a point.  She has a lot of material to cover, little time.

 6             I don't share, I must say with all due candour, I don't share her

 7     viewpoint that the Judges' questions should be handled on redirect

 8     examination, because in doing that -- because unfortunately the questions

 9     coming from the Judges are coming contemporaneously with the direct

10     examination.  On the other hand, I do know that by dealing with them

11     immediately, it takes up a lot of time, and I think the figure was 20 to

12     25 per cent, and I can -- from practice, I'm more than willing to accept

13     that figure, if not higher than that.

14             So there lies the problem.  But I would prefer the practice be

15     that everything be handled on direct examination, allowing the parties

16     the possibility of re-cross-examination, and in this instance, because of

17     the topics and because of who we have on the stand, to allow Ms. Alaburic

18     the flexibility to do a thorough direct examination, thereby allowing the

19     rest of us, who are concerned - and I'm not saying that I am one of them,

20     but many of them, I know, are - to have a sense of confidence when we

21     stand up to do our cross-examination.

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I believe that everything has

23     been said, Mr. Scott.

24             MR. SCOTT:  Your Honour, in light of the comments, I would like

25     to make an ever-so-brief response.  Counsel -- both of Mr. Petkovic's

Page 49670

 1     counsel were on their feet, and I think I should at least have a chance

 2     to respond.

 3             Your Honour, I don't mind and certainly in fact expect that any

 4     argument or position put forward by the Prosecution or a concern raised

 5     will -- is subject, of course, to a fair and even tough response.

 6     However, I do not accept to have our position mis-characterised.

 7             I did not request at this point additional time, and the Chamber

 8     should not address, with all due respect, the issue that the Prosecution

 9     has raised before the Chamber in the context or postured by the Defence

10     as Mr. Scott asking for more time.  I have not asked for more time at

11     this point.  I have raised what the Prosecution believes is a very

12     serious and good-faith concern.

13             Now, having said that, Your Honours, I agree with Mr. Karnavas.

14     This is not primarily about the Judges' questions.  There's a factor of

15     that.  But, again, I don't want the issue -- the fundamental issue to be

16     mis-characterised.  This is not primarily about Judges' questions.  This

17     is about fairness in the examination process.  And I still stand by --

18     again with some sympathy to Ms. Alaburic's position, I repeat again, you

19     can't treat a matter in a very cursory fashion and then say, I'll come

20     back to it in redirect.  It fundamentally corrupts the process.

21             Now, Mr. Stewart says, Well, they didn't have to put Mr. Petkovic

22     on at all, on at all.  Of course not, of course they didn't.  But once

23     they have -- but once they have, there has to be a fairness in the

24     procedure to both the Prosecution and the co-accused.

25             So that's our concern, Your Honour.  The Prosecution felt that it

Page 49671

 1     was something that should be brought before the Chamber.  We're, of

 2     course, as always, in the Chamber's hands.  I do forecast, Your Honour,

 3     that some days from now -- some days from now we'll be having this very

 4     further discussion.  I'll be happy to be shown wrong, but I forecast that

 5     we will.

 6             Thank you.

 7             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Since Judge Trechsel is not

 8     here today, the Trial Chamber will hand out its decision on the basis of

 9     what you have said and on the basis of what the parties have responded to

10     the question at issue; namely, that you have realised that the Petkovic

11     Defence did not address topics [indiscernible], in your view, are

12     important topics; Prozor, for instance, the April 1993 ultimatum, and so

13     on.  I shall not go into details here.  You feel that this is a problem,

14     and you seize the Judges of this question.  And you explain that this may

15     have to do with the time factor.

16             We will deliberate on the matter.  I could tell you straight away

17     what my position is, but out of respect for my colleague who is not here

18     today, I shall not do this.

19             On a personal note, and I would like this to be very clear, after

20     Ms. Alaburic has completed her questions, I, myself, would put questions

21     to General Petkovic, so we will be on the front-line then.  I would like

22     to say this.

23             The Rules are very specific.  There is an examination-in-chief, a

24     cross-examination, and redirect.  As far as redirect is concerned, the

25     case law of this Tribunal, notably stemming from common law Judges, is

Page 49672

 1     extremely strict.  Redirect must have to do with the cross-examination

 2     and ties into it very narrowly.

 3             The Defence controls its strategy entirely.  If the Defence

 4     wishes to address a number of issues, it may.  If it doesn't, then it

 5     doesn't.  The best proof of this is the Haradinaj case, in which the

 6     Haradinaj Defence team did not wish to call any witnesses and stated that

 7     as far as it was concerned, the trial had come to an end.  The Prosecutor

 8     did not get to his feet to say, No, he should conduct his

 9     examination-in-chief.  The Defence is entirely free.  If it wishes to do

10     so, it can.  If it doesn't want to, then it doesn't.  The best proof of

11     that is that if an accused wants to, he can testify.  If he doesn't want

12     to, he doesn't.  That is what the Rules state.

13             In addition, as far as the examination-in-chief is concerned,

14     which addresses a number of issues, the cross-examination must, as far as

15     I'm concerned, solely focus on those issues that have been addressed

16     during the examination-in-chief.  That is how this should be conducted,

17     in this spirit.

18             Even if the Trial Chamber is made up of Judges who come from

19     civil law systems, it also has a number of assistants who know, as well

20     as common law lawyers do, how the system works.  We are working with

21     American prosecutors, American attorneys, and only a few days ago an

22     American attorney came to work with us in the Chamber.  So this is

23     familiar ground, as far as we are concerned, and we know how the common

24     law system works.

25             The only problem which I see at the moment, and I shall discuss

Page 49673

 1     it with my colleagues, whether we should force General Petkovic's team to

 2     address a number of issues and then provide additional time, but the

 3     Trial Chamber has set the time for all Defence teams.  General Petkovic

 4     has 55 hours, and the Petkovic Defence was free to use this time as it

 5     wished.  It decided to dedicate six hours to General Petkovic and to keep

 6     a little bit of time for Mr. Coric's witnesses, Mr. Coric's testimony,

 7     Mr. Pusic, and Mr. Pusic's testimony, if he is to testify.  We don't

 8     know.  Since the Praljak Defence has had its time, it kept a little bit

 9     of extra time in the event it wanted to put any questions during

10     redirect.  So all of these elements fit into one another.

11             Of course, it hasn't escaped me that the Petkovic Defence did not

12     address a number of issues.  Nothing tells you that I might not put

13     questions on these issues when I put questions to the witness.  Why will

14     I intervene immediately after the examination-in-chief?  Things are not

15     done haphazardly.  I've been working for 30 years in a courtroom, and I

16     know what a criminal trial is all about.  I felt it was better to

17     intervene then to enable all and everyone, namely, other counsel, during

18     their cross-examination, if need be, to come back on things the witness

19     has said when I put questions to the witness.  This is a safety window.

20     And then the Prosecution has everything at its disposal for the

21     cross-examination of the witness.

22             I'm also making sure that the Prosecution can work properly.  I

23     also make sure that the Petkovic Defence can work properly, because

24     Ms. Alaburic, when she decides to conduct her redirect, can, if need be,

25     revert back to my questions.  No one is prejudiced in this way.  This is

Page 49674

 1     what I believe.  If I thought that were the case, then I would just

 2     remain silent, but that is not how I proceed, and certainly not in

 3     professional terms.

 4             The Trial Chamber will undoubtedly, either on Monday or Tuesday,

 5     state its position, a unanimous position, a decision taken by the

 6     majority; I don't know.  Whatever the case may be, this issue will be the

 7     subject of an oral decision.

 8             Ms. Alaburic, I don't know how many minutes you have left.  You

 9     have the floor to complete your examination-in-chief.

10             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Before I start examining the

11     witness, I would like to thank you for this explanation.  For the most

12     part, it jibes with what I wanted to tell my learned friend Mr. Scott.

13     And my response is the following:  We have spent the last two years

14     analysing all the evidence called by the Prosecution, and we have

15     analysed whether the Prosecution managed to prove the counts, the

16     charges.  And based on that, we decided that we didn't have to adduce any

17     evidence to the contrary.  Having decided that the Prosecution failed to

18     prove some charges against General Petkovic, we decided not to address

19     them in our case.

20             After General Petkovic's examination-in-chief, we will have just

21     one major topic that we want to examine him on, but unfortunately we

22     won't have enough time to deal with it, and this is the labour done by

23     detainees.  Cutting my examination-in-chief short, down to 17 minutes

24     that I have left, I decided to skip this topic, while making it clear to

25     the Trial Chamber that I consider it to be very important, because I

Page 49675

 1     could see that His Honour Judge Antonetti wanted to address some

 2     documents signed by General Petkovic about labour by detainees, and I

 3     have no doubt this topic will be addressed in this courtroom.  And if the

 4     Prosecution or my colleagues from the Defence -- other Defence teams want

 5     to address this topic, and I'm sure that Mr. Scott will want to do that,

 6     I will consider that to be a topic that has been covered in the

 7     examination-in-chief, and I will not oppose leading questions by my

 8     learned friend Mr. Scott, because we had to skip some topics or deal with

 9     them in the briefest possible terms because we consider them to be not in

10     dispute when it comes to the innocence by the accused, General Petkovic.

11             Now, I have some 17 or 16 minutes left, according to my

12     calculation.

13                           WITNESS:  MILIVOJ PETKOVIC [Resumed]

14                           [The witness answered through interpreter]

15                           Examination by Ms. Alaburic:  [Continued]

16        Q.   General, we addressed the issue of your movements the past few

17     days.  That's document 4D2027.  Your Honours, it's the separate document

18     that I distributed to everybody two days ago.  I assume that we have it

19     on our screens now.  Yes, we'll have it soon.  Let me repeat the number,

20     4D2027.

21             General, you have it in English only.  Okay, now we have it in

22     Croatian.  Did you take part in drafting this document?

23        A.   Yes.

24        Q.   The numbers listed here, under the headings that indicate where

25     you were, Geneva, Mostar, Sarajevo, what is the reference there?  For

Page 49676

 1     instance, P12 -- 1038?

 2        A.   It is the number of the exhibit admitted here at this trial where

 3     my name and whereabouts are mentioned.

 4        Q.   General, could you tell us, on the five pages of text that we

 5     have here, to the best of your recollection, is this an accurate

 6     representation of your movements relevant for the time-period of the

 7     indictment?

 8        A.   Yes, but I have to make a correction.  As regards November.

 9        Q.   Please go ahead, General.

10        A.   It says that on the 8th of November, "Boban-Petkovic in Ploce."

11     That's wrong, because it should read that Petkovic was in Split on the

12     8th.

13        Q.   Can we please look at the last page of this document.  That's

14     page 5 in both languages.  And then I would like to ask you, General, to

15     correct this.

16             And perhaps we can make it possible for the general to correct it

17     on the screen.

18             General, I think that you will now be able to cross out what is

19     stated here for Ploce, and then you can just cross that out and write

20     "Split."

21        A.   [Marks]

22        Q.   General, now I would like you to initial this page.

23        A.   [Marks]

24        Q.   And then we can go back to page 1, and you could perhaps initial

25     page 1 as well, and then I would like us to get an IC number for it.

Page 49677

 1             If we could go back to page 1.

 2        A.   [Marks]

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, please.

 4             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honour, the document just initialled by the

 5     witness shall be given Exhibit IC01180.  Thank you, Your Honours.

 6             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

 7        Q.   General, over the past few days we spoke at length about the

 8     obligations of the commander of a military unit.  Now I would like you to

 9     give us some explanations as to the deputy commanders.

10             Do deputy commanders have the right to discipline soldiers and

11     officers in that unit?

12        A.   No.  The law stipulates that only the commander has that right,

13     or if that person stands in for the commander for a lengthier

14     time-period.

15        Q.   General, could you please tell us, is the deputy commander part

16     of the chain of command?

17        A.   If we look at the chain of command, in terms of individuals, only

18     commanders, people designated as commanders are part of the chain of

19     command, because you cannot have two people at the same place in the

20     chain of command.

21        Q.   General, tell us, does the deputy commander have any inherent

22     command powers?

23        A.   The command powers must be defined and conferred upon him.

24        Q.   Let me repeat the question.  Does that mean that that person has

25     or has not inherent command powers?

Page 49678

 1        A.   In the organisational part of the command structure, he does have

 2     powers, and he is in charge of other services that are not in the strict

 3     operational or command sense.

 4        Q.   General, I don't think that the interpretation is correct.  Could

 5     you please repeat your answer slowly?  So I am asking you whether deputy

 6     commanders have inherent command powers.

 7        A.   He does not have any command powers when he's together with the

 8     commander.  He has powers to carry out auxiliary, secondary activities in

 9     a command.

10        Q.   Could you tell us, when can deputy commanders have some command

11     powers?

12        A.   At the point in time when the commander confers the command

13     powers upon him and gives him the task and the time-frame for his

14     actions.

15        Q.   If we go back to the topic of Stupni Do, and if we recall that

16     Ivica Rajic sent his first report on the 8th of November, 1993, about the

17     events in Stupni Do, and sent a supplemental report on the 15th, can you

18     tell us whether you, as the deputy chief of the Main Staff, and the chief

19     was Ante Roso, did you have any powers to take any measures against

20     Ivica Rajic or any other HVO members?

21        A.   No.  I was duty-bound, if General Ante Roso was not informed

22     about that, to bring this report to his attention and to inform him about

23     all actions that were taken.  And in that case, he took it upon himself

24     to act further.

25        Q.   Finally, General, I would like you to explain to us some of the

Page 49679

 1     statements that you made earlier.  We've seen them in the documents that

 2     were admitted in this courtroom.

 3             4D75, it's the penultimate document in the third binder.

 4             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, let me get back to the

 5     disciplinary measures.  That is not something I had contemplated as part

 6     of my questions, and I would like to thank Ms. Alaburic for having

 7     addressed this question with you.  She addresses it through the events in

 8     Stupni Do.

 9             I have listened to her, and I have re-read the Military

10     Disciplinary Code, P00425, which you don't have, I'm sure, in your

11     documents.  This could be placed on the screen, but I don't think it is

12     necessary to look at it.  I compared the former Yugoslavia text with the

13     text of the ABiH and the text of the Croatian Army, and of the HVO, and I

14     see that there isn't much difference between all these texts with the

15     system of my country.  There is very little difference.

16             When an offence is committed -- afterwards, I would like you to

17     answer, General Petkovic, please.  When a military contravenes the

18     system, this could be of two kinds.  It could be of a disciplinary nature

19     or it could be of a criminal nature.  If it is of a disciplinary nature,

20     it is defined under Article 3 of the Military Code.  I'm not going to

21     quote them all, but, for instance, this is the case of a soldier who

22     refuses to obey an order.  That comes under the military discipline rules

23     of the army.  That is the case, for instance, of a soldier who is not

24     obeying the orders as he should.  He's being asked to monitor the

25     entrance door of the barracks, and in the middle of the night he is

Page 49680

 1     caught sleeping.  That is a disciplinary offence.  Eight are listed here

 2     in Article 3.  And in Article 59, Article 59 provides that the commander

 3     of a unit can then punish the person in question.  That is what we call a

 4     disciplinary breach.

 5             As far as crimes are concerned, General Petkovic, that is another

 6     story.  When there is a crime, this does not come under Article 3 of the

 7     Military Disciplinary Code.  When a crime is committed, and that is

 8     something which you will understand when I put questions to you later on,

 9     then the military prosecutor intervenes, or an investigating judge, and

10     this has got nothing to do with the penalty imposed if it is a

11     disciplinary breach.

12             If you read the text as it stands, of course, it can happen that

13     when a crime is committed, the commander places the soldier in custody

14     and punishes him that way.  He will then be placed in a military prison.

15     But he can be taken into custody.

16             According to the Military Disciplinary Code which you had in the

17     JNA and in the HVO, did it coincide with the situation where a unit

18     commander can punish a military who has committed a disciplinary breach

19     to military discipline, but when a crime is committed, he can arrest him

20     on a temporary basis, but then this falls within the competence of

21     another jurisdiction?  Am I right or am I wrong?  You are totally free to

22     answer.

23             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, you're quite right,

24     but I'd just like to add something.

25             Infractions, offences, the first point you say, when somebody

Page 49681

 1     fails to carry out an order properly, in that case then --

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Petkovic, I will let

 3     you take the floor.  I could have completed my question by saying:  As a

 4     prosecutor, I have sometimes had to manage cases in which military had

 5     committed crimes, and in cases like those the military in my country was

 6     not the subject of military disciplinary sanction because this fell under

 7     another jurisdiction.  Because a commander was entitled to take him into

 8     custody, he then was the subject of another procedure, which was a

 9     criminal procedure, which was instigated by the prosecutor and not by the

10     commander.  Did things work like that in the JNA, in the HVO, and in the

11     Croatian Army?  You were fortunate enough, or unfortunate - I don't

12     know - to have served in three armies.

13             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Perhaps even four, Your Honour.

14             Yes, rules on military disciplinary action in force in the HVO

15     was, well, the same as the one used in the Yugoslav People's Army and is

16     the same as the rules and regulations that were in force in the Republic

17     of Croatia.  So there were two levels.  The first level were lighter

18     offences, where the commanders could mete out sanctions, but only to

19     soldiers and soldiers in detention.  Now, when it comes to proper

20     detention, officers and non-commissioned officers could just be meted out

21     light sentences, they could be given reprimands.  But if an offence was

22     considered more serious and jeopardised the life of a unit, both in the

23     former JNA -- there were military disciplinary courts attached to

24     military districts in Croatia, there were also military disciplinary

25     courts.  Herceg-Bosna enacted rules and regulations where military

Page 49682

 1     disciplinary courts are mentioned.  However, they were not -- they were

 2     never established, because there were not the necessary cadres to set

 3     them up.

 4             Now, with the military disciplinary courts, there were several

 5     types of measures that could be meted out.  First of all, you could be

 6     stopped or held back, or you could -- you would not be promoted for four

 7     years.  You would have to wait four years for promotion.  Now, if you had

 8     a two-year ban on promotion, then you would carry the rank you already

 9     held for six years.  Furthermore, a decision could have been made to

10     deduct 10 or 20 per cent from your salary for a maximum period of two

11     years.  That was another sanction.  And then for officers and

12     non-commissioned officers, there was detention up to 30 days that the

13     Military Disciplinary Court could give.  And for officers and NCOs, they

14     could also be struck off the list of reserve officers.  I think there was

15     another measure that could have been implemented - I'm not quite

16     sure - for officers.  Well, they could also lose their rank.  That was

17     another measure.

18             So those were basically the measures that could be applied both

19     in the Yugoslav People's Army, when it came to military disciplinary

20     courts, and these same measures were applied in the Republic of Croatia.

21             And let me tell you that I was the president of the Military

22     Disciplinary Court in Split, for example, for a time, for one term of

23     office, and I know that there were sentences of that kind, too, measures

24     of that kind.  And this was also provided for by Herceg-Bosna in its

25     rules and regulations.  However, as I said, the military disciplinary

Page 49683

 1     courts were never actually established, attached to the operative zones

 2     or the Main Staff, and not every operative -- it needn't have been for

 3     every operative zone.  You could have one military disciplinary court for

 4     several zones, and that was the case in Croatia while I was president of

 5     the Military Disciplinary Court.

 6             So Herceg-Bosna did not succeed in actually setting up courts of

 7     this kind, and in my opinion, because it failed to do so, the command

 8     structures were deprived of sanctions and measures that could be taken.

 9             Now, the third part of what you mentioned, when it came to

10     crimes, crime and punishment, I think the proceedings were the same in

11     the JNA and in the Croatian Army, and in Herceg-Bosna as well.  If you

12     know who the perpetrator or perpetrators were, then you were duty-bound

13     to ensure that they did not abscond, which meant that you had to secure

14     him, and block off the crime scene, if I can put it that way, where the

15     crime took place.  You would have to collect up all the evidence and

16     gather all the information, and then report that to the investigating

17     judge.  If the perpetrators were unknown and a crime had been committed,

18     then you had the Security Service at your disposal, as well as the

19     military police, who would then undertake the process of investigating

20     the matter, and once again it would end up with the investigating judge,

21     or, rather, further proceedings would be taken within the various

22     structures.

23             So the rules and regulations and provisions were the same both in

24     the JNA -- I think Croatia copied out that section of the law, and it

25     applied in Herceg-Bosna as well, except that major drawback, and that is

Page 49684

 1     to say that no military disciplinary courts were actually established.

 2     And then there was this third method, which was one applied in the JNA

 3     and in the Republic of Croatia, and it was also prescribed for

 4     Herceg-Bosna, and a basis was formed with the military district courts

 5     and that system that were in several locations to deal with it that way.

 6             So since we're mentioning three states, three countries, those

 7     provisions were, to all intents and purposes, well, I would say even

 8     identical, and the procedures and measures that could be taken were also

 9     identical.

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  Thank you,

11     General Petkovic, for this very exhaustive reply.  And given that you

12     touched on disciplinary sanctions, I realise that you chaired a

13     disciplinary commission and/or a military disciplinary court, and

14     therefore you know more than anybody else what it's all about.  So thank

15     you very much for giving us this information.

16             Just a small point of clarification.  When I said that you were

17     part of three armies, I was basing that on the facts that I was sure of,

18     but, in fact, you may have been a member of a fourth army, which would be

19     the ABiH.  But, of course, this will be in the judgement.  And you will

20     understand that I could not take any position on this point, and this is

21     why I only talked about three armies.  I'm being very cautious when I put

22     anything forward.  But we take note of the fact that you were a member of

23     four armies.

24             Ms. Alaburic, you have the floor.

25             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.

Page 49685

 1        Q.   Document 4D75, General, your letter to Sefer Halilovic.  It's in

 2     the third set of documents, the last-but-one; the third binder, that is.

 3     But maybe you can rely on e-court.  I will read out the section in which

 4     I'm interested in now and ask you for your comment.

 5             In February 1993, among other things, you wrote to

 6     Sefer Halilovic, I quote:

 7             "I looked forward to each new soldier, Croatian or Muslim,

 8     because I knew that they had a common goal.  The HVO hasn't changed its

 9     attitude or behaviour towards the BH Army to this day.  We are aware that

10     with the present balance of powers, neither the HVO nor the BH Army alone

11     can defeat the Chetniks."

12             Could you please comment, General, on what I have just read?

13        A.   Certainly, Your Honours.  I can say that I was pleased when I saw

14     that the BH Army was growing stronger and that it would be able to stand

15     up to the Serb forces.  I was also pleased by the HVO growing stronger,

16     and also proud of the fact that the HVO had some Muslims in its ranks.

17     In spite of some tensions, I sincerely wished that Sefer Halilovic

18     succeed to get to terms with the Chetniks or -- in Central Bosnia.  I

19     enjoyed -- or, rather, I promised him that we would engage additional

20     forces of ours and also move up to the front against the Chetniks.

21        Q.   Did you ever invite any prominent persons from the BH Army to

22     come to the HVO staff?

23        A.   When Hujka received the brigade, once it was established, I

24     wanted Halilovic [as interpreted] to come and see, and we wanted to keep

25     Jasmin Jaganjac in the HVO and give him an opportunity to rise or be

Page 49686

 1     promoted maybe even up to the higher levels.

 2             And I can mention one more person, Mirsad Catic from Konjic.  I

 3     asked Arif to lend him to me, and he was for -- my deputy in the JNA for

 4     a while.  But he had also an injured leg, so we wanted to give him the

 5     opportunity to be treated in Split if he came to the HVO to help us out.

 6             JUDGE PRANDLER:  I would like to ask General Petkovic about one

 7     issue to be clarified.

 8             In the transcript, it is said that:

 9             "I asked Arif to lend him," that is Mirsad Catic, "to lend him to

10     me, and my deputy in the JNA ..."

11             I believe that you said that he was your deputy in the JNA, but

12     it is again not very clear if it was Catic or Arif, that is,

13     Arif Pasalic, who was your deputy before in the JNA.  Thank you.

14             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

15             First I said that in Mostar we wanted Arif to join us in the HVO

16     Main Staff, because we had a brigade and appointed a new commander.  We

17     made that request to the political structures in Mostar with who we were

18     in permanent contact.  But when they told us that they were establishing

19     a corps and that Arif has his place there, I met Mr. Catic in Konjic, and

20     I asked them to let him at least come to my Main Staff, because this

21     Mr. Catic was my deputy in the JNA for a while and I wanted to have him

22     next to me.

23             And, secondly, I believe that he stepped on a land-mine, or

24     something happened to him, anyway, so I could have given him the

25     opportunity to get treatment in Split for this leg of his.

Page 49687

 1             JUDGE PRANDLER:  Thank you very much for your answer.  Thanks.

 2             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I would like to correct the

 3     transcript on the previous page, 29, line 22.  General Petkovic said that

 4     they called Arif Pasalic, rather than Halilovic, as is recorded in this

 5     transcript.

 6        Q.   Now tell the Trial Chamber, sir, what was your attitude toward

 7     the alleged idea that part of Bosnia-Herzegovina separate itself from

 8     that country and become part of Croatia.

 9        A.   My attitude?  I never was in favour of part of Bosnia-Herzegovina

10     seceding from that state and becoming part of Croatia.

11        Q.   General, we saw a document dated 21 April 1993.  It's P2019.

12     Judge Antonetti prepared it for your examination; I didn't.  It was --

13     these were the minutes of Tihomir Blaskic taken at your meeting in

14     Zenica, and there Sefer Halilovic told you something:

15             "Hey, what are you talking about?  You only want a Croatian state

16     in these parts, anyway."

17             And then you spoke your mind about the so-called Greater Croatia.

18     So could you now please explain to the Trial Chamber what you thought

19     about this idea and the possibility of its being implemented ?

20        A.   Let me first say what I replied to Halilovic.  I said to him, You

21     must be out of your mind if you really think that's the case.  Croatia

22     has as an integral part of its territory the Serbian Krajina which wishes

23     to leave Croatia, and it is a crazy idea to think that Croatia, given

24     this unsolved problem, aspires to anything more; something along those

25     lines.  So I'm not sure whether it was -- how faithfully it was recorded

Page 49688

 1     in that document.  But, anyway, as far as I'm concerned, I was never in

 2     favour of the idea that part of Bosnia-Herzegovina should join Croatia.

 3     Instead, Bosnia-Herzegovina was a unified country and stayed this way,

 4     only I'm sorry that nowadays they can't seem to be able to run their own

 5     affairs.

 6        Q.   What is your attitude toward the relationship between the HVO and

 7     the armed forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina?

 8             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Before you answer this

 9     question, I would like to come back to Halilovic.  Listen carefully,

10     General Praljak -- I'm sorry, General Petkovic.  But I was thinking of

11     General Praljak, and you'll understand why.

12             When General Praljak was in your stead, when you were not there,

13     General Praljak talked about General Halilovic.  I do not have the

14     transcript before me because I was not planning to put this question to

15     you right now.  And I don't always look at the transcript, anyway, but I

16     trust my memory.  In a couple of words, and General Praljak had said the

17     following.  He had explained that Halilovic and others were sometimes

18     pushing Alija Izetbegovic to voice some views or take some positions, and

19     I think I understood - I may be wrong, but this is what I understood

20     through what General Praljak said - that he may have some words against

21     General Halilovic, but at the same time he thought highly of you.  But

22     against Halilovic, he had none.  So he said the following:  According to

23     him, General Halilovic, who was, like you, a member of the JNA before,

24     was playing such a game that one could believe that he was playing in the

25     hands of the Serbian KOS, and one could think that he was a Serbian agent

Page 49689

 1     that had been infiltrated in the ABiH.  So these were very strong words

 2     that were uttered by General Praljak.

 3             So now you have been on the ground, you have seen

 4     General Halilovic, you have spoken to him probably in Geneva, and I

 5     assume that you must have had lunch or dinners with him, so what do you

 6     think of the opinion expressed by General Praljak on General Halilovic?

 7             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I can very briefly

 8     say -- speak my mind without either confirming or rejecting

 9     General Praljak's view.

10             To my mind, General Halilovic did not work either for the JNA or

11     for Yugoslavia.  He broke all bands with the JNA and Yugoslavia.  I know

12     that from heated meetings called by General Morillon and many others.

13     And that -- and the same situation prevailed in Geneva when we spoke to

14     Mr. Nambiar.  General Halilovic, if you ask me, never shed a tear for

15     Yugoslavia or the JNA.  And as for Mladic, he didn't have a nice word for

16     him, and there is footage to that effect.

17             Halilovic is a few years younger than I.  He was a security

18     officer for a while, and he served in Djakovo, which is in Slavonia, in

19     the east of Croatia.  But I don't think that whoever worked for the

20     Security Service automatically was a KOS man, because the Security

21     Service was separate from the Counter-Intelligence Service, KOS.  The

22     Security Service worked inside a unit and worked locally, whereas the KOS

23     worked even across borders.  I heard the stories from some people of him

24     being a KOS man, but I wouldn't say that of him.  He had his views, he

25     opted for Bosnia-Herzegovina, and he was very critical of Mladic and his

Page 49690

 1     team that accompanied him to meetings and talks.

 2             As for him and Mr. Izetbegovic, I heard from Mr. Morillon when he

 3     said to me, on the 9th of June, You won't be speaking to Halilovic today

 4     because great things are going on in Sarajevo; the 1st Corps is on its

 5     feet because Halilovic is to be replaced, but he couldn't be replaced in

 6     five minutes because they had to persuade all the other commanders, and

 7     that went on all day.  But why Mr. Izetbegovic decide to replace

 8     Halilovic has remained a mystery to me to this date.

 9             Halilovic -- or, rather, Mr. Izetbegovic [as interpreted] always

10     wanted to impose himself.  He was very assertive.  He always wanted to be

11     number 1, even at Presidency's meetings, and not everybody was willing to

12     accept that, so that obviously a rift came about between the two of them.

13             I cannot say that Halilovic was a KOS agent.  His mind worked

14     very differently.

15             By the way, there were stories of me being a KOS man because I

16     had come from the JNA, although that has nothing to do with reality.

17             I know that he worked for the Security Service.  It was the

18     security service of a brigade, but I know what their tasks are.  It is

19     limited to some operational tasks and tactical tasks, whereas the KOS

20     even works in other countries.

21             So I never accepted these arguments or stories, but he was very

22     assertive, he was indeed.  You agreed to him about one thing, and when

23     the following -- when the course of the discussion didn't seem to go in

24     his favour, then he would change his mind.

25             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  Yes, your position

Page 49691

 1     has been recorded in the transcript.

 2             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I have a correction on page 34,

 3     line 6.  The general said that Sefer Halilovic wanted to impose himself

 4     at Presidency meetings, rather than Mr. Izetbegovic, as is recorded here,

 5     and that other people objected to that.

 6             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, indeed, that was the case.

 7             Actually, I heard those stories from other people in the ABiH

 8     when I asked why he had left.

 9             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation]

10        Q.   I believe that we have two more minutes to go.  What do you think

11     of the relationship between the HVO and the Armed Forces of

12     Bosnia-Herzegovina?

13        A.   We --

14        Q.   The Armed Forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina, General.

15        A.   Well, if you ask me, the HVO was an integral part of the

16     Armed Forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and we were waiting for the man we

17     considered the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of

18     Bosnia-Herzegovina to gather everybody around him and say publicly, on

19     TV, Today it is we who represent the Armed Forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

20     Petkovic isn't here, but in his stead there is so-and-so, et cetera.

21     Mr. Izetbegovic spent a day and a half in Mostar, and he was in a

22     position to do that in October 1992, or -- and he could have done that

23     whenever he wanted, in Geneva and when I was in Jablanica with him.  But

24     he was the president of the country and the commander-in-chief, and, you

25     know, this should have been his initiative.

Page 49692

 1        Q.   Tell us about the joint command of the HVO and the ABiH.  We saw

 2     a number of documents here, and we know that this joint command couldn't

 3     be established before the signing of the Washington Agreements.  Did the

 4     HVO in any way obstruct the establishing of a joint command of the HVO

 5     and the ABiH?

 6        A.   No.  We considered the joint command a great step forward, and we

 7     also saw it as something that provided us security, because we were in a

 8     weaker position than the ABiH.  So that was a guarantee of our survival.

 9     But some things happened at the political level.  The Vance-Owen Plan

10     failed for good, and then things went bad.

11        Q.   By way of finishing, General, tell us, the two years you spent in

12     Bosnia-Herzegovina, what did you think -- which country were you

13     defending there?

14        A.   I defended Bosnia-Herzegovina, and I left that country.  It is

15     still in existence today, so -- it exists in its original borders, so

16     nobody took any part of its territory from it.

17             MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, General.

18             Your Honours, thank you for additional time.  I believe my time

19     is up, so thank you once more.

20             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Indeed, you have used six hours

21     and forty minutes.  This was confirmed by the Registrar.  So Mr. Scott

22     will have six hours and forty minutes, as it was planned.

23             We will have a break, because it's nearly 20 to 4.00.  We will

24     resume at 4.00, and we will go until 6.00.

25                           --- Recess taken at 3.41 p.m.

Page 49693

 1                           --- On resuming at 4.09 p.m.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] If I have understood correctly,

 3     you have completed your examination-in-chief, Ms. Alaburic.

 4             I wanted to specify, for information purposes for the Praljak

 5     Defence, a document was unaccounted for because the document couldn't be

 6     printed out, I believe.  For some time now, when documents are being

 7     copied, some of the numbers don't always come out properly.  This would

 8     be 3D03640, 640.  I believe that's the right number.

 9             Mr. Kovacic, you can look at this document.

10             MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Of course, Your Honour, we will

11     take a look in the course of the day, I hope.

12             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As far as the oral decision we

13     took yesterday pertaining to the extension of time so that the English

14     translation is provided and that people can make their submissions after

15     that, that applies to all and everyone, not only for the Praljak Defence.

16     This stands to reason.

17                           Questioned by the Court:

18             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Petkovic, I shall now

19     put you a number of questions.  We have been sitting in this courtroom

20     for the last four years now.  On several occasions, and too rarely, in my

21     view, we have been able to talk to each other.  I now have some time

22     before me, and I'm going to put you a series of questions.

23             Let's begin today.  As you know, there will be two hours left

24     when we finish.  I shall resume on Monday.  I don't think I'll be able to

25     finish on, so we might still be addressing this on Tuesday, part of the

Page 49694

 1     hearing on Tuesday.

 2             To all Defence counsel and to the Prosecutor, I have handed out

 3     the documents relating to the questions I was going to ask.  And to be

 4     fair, I relied on the Prosecution's case, based on the Prosecution

 5     documents that bear the letter P, as well as the Defence case and its

 6     various submissions.  I relied on documents which are either D3, D4, D2,

 7     and sometimes I relied on P documents as well, because these are

 8     documents that can be used by either.  When I shall address the documents

 9     and when I shall dedicate my time to the Prosecution's case, to begin

10     with, I may also highlight in a document some elements which could be

11     deemed exculpatory, and vice versa.  This is an empirical division I'm

12     making.  A document can be read in different ways.

13             Before we start, there are a few preliminary questions I'd like

14     to address.

15             As you know, you come after General Praljak, who has already

16     taken the stand before you.  I have not spent the same time on him,

17     because General Praljak testified at great length and I realised

18     afterwards that I had spent approximately 22 hours with him.  Out of

19     these 22 hours, a lot of time had been spent on the presidential

20     transcripts, so it is not useful to address these presidential

21     transcripts again, with one exception which I will address at the end of

22     the first day, namely, on Monday, which seems to be a very important

23     transcript, in my view.  Let me give everyone the number.  That is

24     P07475.  This is the presidential transcripts of the 4th of June, 1994,

25     and there are three people present; Tudjman, Susak, Bobetko.  And you are

Page 49695

 1     also mentioned.  That is why this transcript is important.  So we will

 2     have an opportunity to address this again.

 3             General Petkovic, as you know, I put questions to

 4     General Praljak, and a Judge in this Tribunal, when he puts questions, he

 5     or she must be extremely careful when the questions are put, because at

 6     no point in time must it transpire that the Judge has an opinion on the

 7     guilt or non-guilt of an accused.  That is certainly the reason why very

 8     few Judges put questions since the inception of this Tribunal 15 years

 9     ago.  There can be a number of reasons for that.  Perhaps they are not

10     sufficiently experienced in criminal trials, shy away from putting

11     questions; I don't know.  But when there is a question put by a Judge,

12     the Judge is running a very great risk by so doing.

13             I must say that when I put a question once, I got a very

14     spontaneous reaction on the part of Mr. Karnavas.  I did not understand

15     his reaction.  There was a witness who was sitting where you are sitting

16     now, and the question I asked was:  How had he been convened to meetings

17     which were of a presidential nature; was there an agenda or something?

18     And I wanted to know how this functioned.  And Mr. Karnavas stood up

19     right away, and I didn't understand why he had stood up and spoken so

20     forcefully.  That is the first time in 30 years that a lawyer stood up in

21     that manner, whereas I was just putting a question -- an innocent

22     question and asking how the meeting was unfolding, was there an agenda,

23     and this is what happened.  I believe that another person would have

24     said, All right, I won't put anymore questions, but I decided to continue

25     putting my questions in a courageous manner.

Page 49696

 1             You must noticed, General Petkovic, that my questions are very

 2     lengthy questions.  When I put questions, I want to make sure that the

 3     person who is going to answer the question has all the information.  I

 4     don't want to direct the witness in one way or another, so I give the

 5     witness all the information I actually have.  Sometimes I open up several

 6     avenues for the witness, and I don't exclude anything.

 7             Therefore, General Petkovic, when you answer, you have the

 8     opportunity to answer in any way you like.  If, in the question I put,

 9     you notice a mistake, do not hesitate to let me know in that case,

10     because I'm not infallible and I can make mistakes; all the more so that

11     we are discussing extremely technical topics, military topics, where it

12     is important sometimes to have a lot of knowledge on military matters and

13     detailed knowledge.  Since you are a high-ranking officer and a general,

14     you have held high commanding positions, and this may be a handicap for a

15     regular judge.  If I make a mistake when I put my question, please do not

16     hesitate to let me know, and I shall welcome any correction.  I don't

17     wish to have an answer to a question which hasn't been put properly.

18             Could your answers also be as comprehensive as possible.  This is

19     an important moment for you.  You have waited for this for a number of

20     years.  Everyone can put themselves in your shoes, and for you this is a

21     very important moment in your life.  And I understand full well that you

22     wish to answer the questions.

23             General Petkovic, this is my question:  What is your status?  You

24     are an accused, but you are testifying as a witness, and you have taken

25     the solemn declaration.  Admittedly, when I discovered in the Rules that

Page 49697

 1     the accused had to take the solemn declaration, this raised a number of

 2     questions in my mind, because in my system - and I believe in your system

 3     it was the same - an accused does not take the solemn declaration, but

 4     here in this Tribunal an accused must take the solemn declaration.  So

 5     the accused should be telling the truth, but sometimes there might be a

 6     number of issues.  I'll give you an example.

 7             For instance, if I put a question to you and you say to me, I

 8     don't wish to answer the question because this could incriminate me, in

 9     that case, if I apply the theory of the witness-witness, and I will say,

10     Yes, please answer, because you will not be prosecuted.  And then you

11     will turn around and say, Well, all right, in that village or that

12     village, I admit that, which that means that you cannot be prosecuted,

13     you're exonerated.  This is something strange, which probably escaped the

14     Judges who drafted this provision.  I'm speaking off my own bat.  You are

15     an accused who is testifying, and since you have taken the solemn

16     declaration, you should be telling the truth.

17             So as you know, General Petkovic, Mr. Praljak -- the Praljak

18     Defence has asked to have some time to cross-examine you, as submissions

19     have been filed.  When I heard that this time application had been made,

20     I thought that General Praljak wanted to put questions to you as part of

21     the time that had been allocated to him.  In legal terms, I looked into

22     the matter.  As far as I know, unless I'm mistaken, this case has never

23     arisen in any of the international trials.  No accused has ever addressed

24     questions to another accused.  In Nuremberg, this didn't happen; in

25     Tokyo, not either.  In Cambodia, with the ongoing trials, not either.  In

Page 49698

 1     Lebanon, not at all, because the trials haven't started yet.  At ICC,

 2     it's still in the making, so we don't have examples yet of this.  And if

 3     I turn to the common law countries, the trials are usually single trials.

 4     The question doesn't arise.  And in civil law, trials in my country, for

 5     instance, an accused cannot examine another accused.  I've never had such

 6     a case, so this is the first time, and this will be the first time.

 7             In my view, the answer can only be found in the Statute.  The

 8     Statute states that an accused can examine or have an accused examined.

 9     "Examined" means himself.  If he has someone examined, that means the

10     examination is conducted by counsel.  As the Statute provides for this,

11     I, therefore, hold that General Praljak may put questions to you, but

12     this will only be pursuant to Article 21 of the Statute.  I have found

13     nothing as far as case law is concerned.  The Rules of Procedure and

14     Evidence says nothing about this, and we have no examples to date.  We

15     only have this article in the Statute.  After having hesitated quite a

16     lot, I feel that if General Praljak so wishes - I don't know if he

17     does - that he may put questions to you.

18             In addition, I would like to recall that you're presumed

19     innocent.  This is important.  It's important to state this, and it's

20     important to reassert this, because contrary to the feeling you may have

21     had, General Petkovic, we, the Judges, we have not deliberated on either

22     the facts nor on the responsibility.  We have not met to discuss these

23     issues, and we will only meet once the trial is over, once we have the

24     submissions of the Prosecutor and Defence counsel.  We cannot say that we

25     know which way the trial is going.  We cannot, because I have not

Page 49699

 1     discussed with the other Judges the question of your responsibility or

 2     innocence, and we haven't discussed the facts either.  This is something

 3     we will do when the time comes to deliberate, which means that when I put

 4     a question to you, this is solely my question I am putting to you.  I

 5     have not proffered the questions and met with my colleagues beforehand.

 6     I haven't even given them my list of questions.  And I haven't given them

 7     my list of documents, either, to make sure that I am really independent.

 8             If there's something which you may doubt, I'd like to remind you

 9     that I was a confirmation Judge.  This is something I told

10     General Praljak at the time.  I confirmed the indictment.  You were not

11     there at the time.  One fine morning, somebody knocked on my door to

12     bring me all the documents relating to this case.  There were cubic

13     metres of documents.  And 24 hours before that, President Meron told me

14     that I had been appointed Judge in this case.  I thought I would be the

15     Presiding Judge in the Popovic case, because I had been the Pre-Trial

16     Judge in the Popovic case and I was about to become the Presiding Judge

17     in the Popovic case, and one fine morning somebody knocks on my door to

18     bring me these cubic metres of documents.  Today, this is something which

19     we should know.  I have nothing to hide.  I am fully transparent.  This

20     is something you should know.

21             When people bring you cubic metres of documents and when you are

22     asked to confirm all of this, things have to be done swiftly.  So what

23     did I do then?  I checked that there was a legal foundation for this, as

24     regards the counts that were mentioned, and I made sure that there was

25     one document -- that there were documents which coincided with this,

Page 49700

 1     documents that confirmed what was in the indictment, but that there was a

 2     nexus, a connection on a prima facie basis, and that is how I confirmed

 3     the indictment.

 4             I must tell you that if I were to be seized today of such matter,

 5     i.e., to confirm an indictment, I would proceed differently.  This would

 6     no longer be the case, because since 2008 no more indictments can be

 7     issued.  And what is missing is this:  The list of all the exhibits

 8     should have been annexed to the indictment, and that was not the case.

 9     So we do not have an entire list of exhibits, and today I can't tell you,

10     from memory, what exhibits were presented in support of the indictment

11     because these exhibits were in the thousands and there was no list of the

12     exhibits.  So if we were to improve the system, that would be something

13     that should be done.  The ICC is going in that direction, and the ICC,

14     when they hand down the confirmation of the indictment, they also provide

15     a reasoned opinion.

16             I confirmed the indictment and I signed the arrest warrant,

17     because when there is an indictment, there is an arrest warrant, and I

18     signed the arrest warrant for you.  After that, when I learnt that I was

19     to be a Pre-Trial Judge during a status conference, General Praljak was

20     present, he had problems with his lawyers; at the time, he was alone.  I

21     then raised the issue of a potential withdrawal.  Since I had been the

22     Judge involved in the confirmation of the indictment, could I be

23     conducting the trial?  I quoted this Tribunal's case law.  No one

24     objected, and I continued with this.  Had someone objected, I would have

25     left the case right away.  There was no point in having any problems when

Page 49701

 1     I had not been asked to conduct this case.

 2             In addition, I also checked whether the indictment and

 3     General Gotovina, there wasn't some kind of connection.  This is

 4     something I'm sure you're familiar with.  In my country, I needed to try

 5     Mr. Gotovina for an ordinary offence, and my name appeared in the

 6     Gotovina proceedings.  This is something I discovered afterwards, and I

 7     discovered afterwards that I had tried General Gotovina.  I then asked to

 8     withdraw from the Cermak-Markac case, because Mr. Gotovina was involved

 9     in that case.  To begin with, as Mr. Gotovina was a fugitive, then that

10     was not necessary.  Once he was arrested, the President then changed the

11     Judges, and I was no longer appointed to that case, because I feel that

12     if a Judge has any form of connection with a case, the Judge in question

13     should withdraw automatically without a request or application being

14     filed to that effect.  I knew nothing about those events.  I had not been

15     in contact whatsoever with the accused.  And, moreover, I'd never been to

16     Bosnia-Herzegovina, so I was neutral in this case.

17             You may have a few doubts about those people who are going to try

18     you.  You will be tried by me, through the evidence adduced by the

19     Prosecutor, who, beyond all reasonable doubt, must convince us that you

20     are guilty, and the documents of the Prosecution, of the Defence, of

21     witness testimony, need to be scrutinised.  And at the end of this,

22     normally speaking, the truth should rise to the surface.  This is

23     something I wanted to share with you before you answer my questions.

24     I've stated this before.

25             My questions are not trick questions.  That's not how I'll

Page 49702

 1     proceed.  In my job, I have always held everyone in great respect,

 2     whether it be an accused or any other person.  It's not because a person

 3     is accused that he should be well less-treated than any other person.

 4     You are a human being.  You are entitled to respect, in light of the high

 5     positions you held before coming here.  No later than a few moments ago,

 6     I discovered that you presided over a disciplinary court.  All the more

 7     reason to show you respect.

 8             Also, you are testifying under oath.

 9             So, General Petkovic, let me start off with a question which was

10     put a few moments ago, something which didn't come to mind, but this was

11     Ms. Alaburic's last question, so I shall therefore use her last question

12     and start with mine.

13             You said, when answering Ms. Alaburic's question, that you

14     defended the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, so I would like you to

15     explain to me -- unlike General Praljak, who was born in

16     Bosnia-Herzegovina, you were born in Croatia, so what I would like to

17     know is why, as a Croat, you volunteered at some stage, when you joined

18     the HVO, to defend this Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina within the

19     framework of the HVO.  What was your deepest motivation?  Was that for

20     personal reasons, was that a very strong motivation coming from yourself,

21     or was there any other reason?  Could you perhaps explain that to me?

22        A.   Your Honours, it was exclusively for personal reasons.  I agreed

23     to go to Bosnia-Herzegovina and to defend the Republic of Croatia on that

24     territory, to defend Bosnia-Herzegovina or, rather, to stand up to the

25     aggression of the Bosnian Serbs and the then Yugoslav People's Army.  I

Page 49703

 1     considered that in this way, I could make a greater contribution to the

 2     defence of the southern part of the Republic of Croatia and the defence

 3     of Bosnia-Herzegovina, because a safe and secure Bosnia-Herzegovina on

 4     that territory meant that a large portion of the Republic of Croatia

 5     would be secure and safe, too, because it borders on Bosnia-Herzegovina.

 6             At the time, I occupied operative functions, operative posts, and

 7     I considered that at the given time and in view of the experience that I

 8     had gained in the war on the territory of the former Yugoslavia, in this

 9     case the Republic of Croatia, that I could give far more to the Republic

10     of Croatia, and thereby to Bosnia-Herzegovina, if I were to cross over

11     the border and become involved in the defence system on that territory.

12     So that was my guiding light.

13             And it's true I don't have anything much to do with

14     Bosnia-Herzegovina; a few relatives and friends here and there, perhaps,

15     but during my lifetime I just spent a few months in Bosnia-Herzegovina in

16     three or four locations, but seeing what was happening there in

17     Bosnia-Herzegovina and seeing the movements towards the Republic of

18     Croatia, and envisaging what could happen if Bosnia and Herzegovina were

19     to be closed off at that sole entrance point, I simply decided to leave

20     everything I'd been doing in the Croatian Army behind and, for a time, to

21     relocate and go to Bosnia-Herzegovina.  And I think that by doing that, I

22     contributed to a great extent to the defence of the Republic of Croatia,

23     itself, because the forces that were going to move against the Republic

24     of Croatia were stopped in Bosnia-Herzegovina.  In that way, we expressed

25     our solidarity with Bosnia and Herzegovina and its nations and

Page 49704

 1     ethnicities and provided one sole entrance -- the one sole entrance into

 2     Bosnia-Herzegovina remained open.  We provided access.  So that's what

 3     prompted me to go to Bosnia-Herzegovina, nothing else but thoughts along

 4     those lines.

 5             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.

 6             If I understand correctly, because when you make a long

 7     statement, and I actually encourage you to do so because the clock is not

 8     ticking as far as you're concerned, so you can make long answers, but I

 9     have to summarise in order to understand perfectly what you're saying and

10     in order to avoid making any mistakes.  The fact that you volunteered to

11     go to Bosnia-Herzegovina was due to the fact that for you it was a way of

12     securing Croatia, because if that part was going to fall, it would

13     endanger the whole of Croatia, and so you felt it was your duty to be a

14     volunteer.  Did I understand your statement correctly?

15        A.   Yes, that's precisely it, Your Honour.

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  I'm going to touch

17     on a sensitive issue, and you know that I never shy away from touching on

18     sensitive issues.

19             If you want to, we can move to private session.  Otherwise, we

20     can stay in open session.  For the time being, we are in open session.

21             You testified twice; in June 1999, in the Blaskic case, and in

22     November 2000, in the Kordic case.  During your two testimonies, you were

23     a witness of the Court, but I understood that you were a witness of the

24     Court because the Croat government was actually very reluctant at the

25     time for any officers to testify, and the Croatian government was very

Page 49705

 1     reluctant and not very akin to co-operate, and therefore the technical

 2     solution was to bring you to the stand as a witness of the Court, with

 3     another specificity, because there was a videolink.  Is that correct or

 4     is that incorrect?

 5        A.   No, Your Honour, that is not correct.  If anybody in the Blaskic

 6     case, be it the Defence or the Prosecution, had called me to testify, I

 7     would have answered the call.  I expected the Blaskic Defence to want me

 8     to come and testify, but they never asked me to do so; nor did the OTP.

 9     And at that moment, I got a summons from the Trial Chamber.  Probably

10     both parties were in accordance with that, and the Trial Chamber

11     considered it necessary for me to come.  So the entire procedure is not

12     true.  I was prepared to come and testify for either party, but what I

13     expected least finally came true.  I was summoned by the Trial Chamber.

14     Only at a late stage in the proceedings did it occur to me that something

15     like that might happen.

16             I don't know whether the Republic of Croatia prevented anybody

17     from going to The Hague to testify.  Probably they wouldn't have been

18     able to do so, only possibly if the Defence had wanted anybody to come

19     and testify; then they could have prevented that.

20             So this is all I can tell you about my first evidence.

21             And as far as my second evidence is concerned --

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We will stay on this.  Is it

23     true that you asked to have protection measures?  And if so, why did you

24     ask that?

25        A.   No, Your Honour, I was least involved in that process because I

Page 49706

 1     simply didn't know.  I simply heard that Croatia --

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Praljak -- sorry,

 3     General Petkovic.  I keep saying "General Praljak" because he was before

 4     me for days and days, and it's difficult for me to get used to you, but

 5     I'm sure I will, eventually.

 6             I have the transcript before me.  This is the transcript of the

 7     beginning of your testimony, and here is what it says.  It's the

 8     Presiding Judge, Judge Jorda, who is speaking, and he greets you, and

 9     then he says the following.  It's page 22440:

10             "General Petkovic wanted to testify through a videolink, under

11     technical conditions, which seems to be quite usual."

12             So my question is the following:  Why did you want to testify

13     through a videolink?

14        A.   Your Honour, this suggestion was made to me by the

15     representatives of the Croatian government in charge of the co-operation

16     with the ICTY, because they said that they had agreed with the Tribunal

17     for this to be arranged in that manner.  And then I accepted that.

18     Croatia at that time had a rather lengthy correspondence with the

19     Tribunal, and when I heard about these technical measures, I said, Okay,

20     it's all the same to me.  If you want, I can testify from Zagreb.

21             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Still on this same page in the

22     transcript, the Presiding Judge says the following:

23             "It means that General Petkovic wanted to benefit from protective

24     measures."

25             This is what I read, so I don't understand.  You are saying, No,

Page 49707

 1     while the Presiding Judge says that you required or you requested

 2     protective measures.  So could you please clarify this?

 3        A.   Yes, Your Honour.  I didn't know what kind of reply to give, and

 4     at that time it was suggested to me by the Croatian government that I

 5     should request protective measures, that nothing will happen to me.  And

 6     they also suggested that I should apply for a private session.  That was

 7     all.  And they said something else to me, You will not testify there

 8     alone; you'll be accompanied by an attorney of the Republic of Croatia

 9     and a representative of the Croatian government.  I think that was the

10     first instance in which a witness was to be controlled by the government,

11     but it was put that way to me.

12             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  This is very true,

13     what you're saying.  Your hearing was different to what is happening

14     today.  The Chamber had given you a number of points and gave you some

15     time to make a presentation, and after that, instead of asking questions

16     like I'm doing, they asked the Prosecutor to put some questions to you,

17     and then to the Defence team, and Judges also asked a few questions.

18             And you may remember this little detail.  Judge Shahabuddeen

19     asked you if the soldiers and yourself who were in Bosnia-Herzegovina

20     were paid by the Republic of Croatia, and then the representative of the

21     Croatian government stood up and said, He cannot answer this question.

22     Do you remember this anecdote?

23        A.   Yes, Your Honours, I remember.  I remember that my minister of

24     defence explained to me for an hour how this would go on, They have the

25     right to interrupt you and tell you that you shouldn't reply.  And, yes,

Page 49708

 1     at a certain moment the man stood up and said, I believe -- No, we don't

 2     want the general to answer those questions.  He really intervened that

 3     way.  And it took the minister an hour to explain that to me, that I

 4     would find myself in such a situation.  And I asked him then, Well,

 5     Minister, what does the government think, that I'm testifying in the

 6     Blaskic case or in a case of the Republic of Croatia?  I now really don't

 7     know who's being tried up there.  And he said, No, it is my duty to point

 8     this out to you.  We were able to achieve that your evidence is monitored

 9     by a representative of government and a lawyer.

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  In November 2000, a

11     year later, you testify in the Kordic case.  Could you please tell us

12     under which circumstances you were called to the Bar during the Kordic

13     case?

14        A.   Your Honours, the attorney - what was his name - Naumovski, at a

15     moment -- at this one moment in time made an appointment with me to speak

16     to me in Split, and we spoke for an hour and a half.  And he said, We

17     agreed you to be a witness in the Kordic case.  And I believe that I was

18     to testify in April of that year.  And I said to him, Sir, my daughter is

19     getting married in April, and going to the Tribunal and then returning,

20     and I've already given evidence there once, no, I can't do that.  And

21     that's how we parted.  I didn't receive any news from him for a while,

22     but then I received a phone call from him in which he asked me what I

23     thought of that.  And I said to him, No, I cannot go there and testify

24     the way you expect me to, because I need some time for preparation.  And

25     then they gave up on me.  I never confirmed that I would be his witness.

Page 49709

 1     I think I told him that I could be a Chamber witness, which may have been

 2     the most useful solution.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  So you were called

 4     to testify in the Kordic case.  I'm not going to give the name of the

 5     witness, because it was a protected witness, but you noted that there

 6     were documents that were put forward by the Office of the Prosecutor.

 7             Could you tell us, under oath, whether during both cases, Blaskic

 8     and Kordic cases, and in this very trial, could you tell us if a group

 9     called The Hague Group coming from the Croatian government could have

10     done anything or would have put pressure on you in order to,

11     quote/unquote, "prepare" your coming to The Hague, or whether nothing

12     happened; you were helped when you asked for help, but you enjoyed the

13     entirety of your freedom when you testified?  Could you tell us about

14     this, if you know about this?  Of course, if you don't know anything,

15     then you can tell us, and then we can move to something else.

16        A.   Your Honours, I can say this to you:  I said so in the Kordic

17     case already.  I had nothing to do with The Hague Group or Mr. Rebic.  I

18     said that the gentleman who represented the government when I gave

19     evidence, Mr. Udiljak, called me three or four times about the articles

20     published in the Croatian press.  Do you read those articles, General?

21     What do you say to that?  And I replied, It seems to me that somebody

22     staged a trial or a presentation of that trial to the Croatian public,

23     but they diverged somewhat from what's going on in the courtroom,

24     although I didn't really know what was going on in the courtroom.

25             There was some malignant articles about special-purpose units or

Page 49710

 1     military police units, which were called various names, but in no

 2     articles that I read was there any mention of that.  That was my only

 3     contact with the team of the Croatian government for the co-operation

 4     with the ICTY, but never with Mr. Rebic, and nobody of them ever

 5     mentioned Petkovic.

 6             After I received the first call, I went to Split, said, Goodbye,

 7     to the minister.  I never even went to lunch with him, because he only

 8     spoke to me about somebody representing Croatian, in the interests,

 9     without bothering to ask me how I felt.

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  I'm now going to

11     talk about your family background, because in my country, when someone is

12     accused, we are looking at the person's character, we have psychological

13     experts, we have medical experts, psychiatric experts, and we have all

14     sorts of information that we use.  Here, we have nothing.  We have a

15     name, and if the person doesn't say anything, in fact, we don't really

16     know who we're dealing with.  And, in fact, I would like to get to know

17     you a little bit.  I would like to know who you are.

18             So could you perhaps tell me what were your parents doing, what

19     profession did they have?  Could you tell me a little bit about your

20     family background?

21        A.   Yes, Your Honours.  My father was a railroad worker, a common

22     worker.  My mother, for the first two years, until the age of 22, worked,

23     but then gave up her job to be a housewife.

24             I have two brothers.  One is five years younger than I, and the

25     other is ten years younger than I.  They still live in Vrpolje, which is

Page 49711

 1     10 kilometres away from Sibenik.  They live with my mother.  My father

 2     died three years ago.

 3             So I'm from a working-class family, and this may have been one of

 4     the reasons why I decided to enroll on a military school, because my

 5     father didn't have the means to pay for my education.  Apart from that,

 6     he also supported my grandmother and grandfather, who didn't have an

 7     income, so he was the only source of income in our family.

 8             So I graduated from secondary school, and then I joined the army,

 9     the JNA, but my first choice was the navy.  The contract with the JNA was

10     that I had to spend twice the length of my education as a career officer,

11     and that was, indeed, my plan.  Although I'm from Dalmatia and it would

12     have been logical for the JNA to accept me in the navy, they wanted me to

13     serve in the army.  I had two uncles who were in the JNA, and my father

14     had also served in that army.  And I finally accepted their proposal,

15     although I was -- I did consider refusing because they didn't grant my

16     wish.

17             I went to Belgrade to Military Academy in 1961.

18             One of my brothers is an engineer who works at the aluminium

19     factory in Sibenik, or the former aluminium factory.  I don't know who's

20     the owner now, after the privatization.  But, anyway, he still has a job,

21     although he's afraid he might lose it, like many others in Croatia.  He

22     has two children.  One is a university student, and the other is in

23     primary school.  The younger brother works for the railroad as technical

24     staff.  He's also married.  He has two children.  One of his sons got

25     married recently, so they are all grown up.  This is my family from my

Page 49712

 1     father's and my mother's side.

 2             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] How many children do you have,

 3     and what is their profession?

 4        A.   Your Honours, I have two children, two daughters.  Both are

 5     married.  One works for a bank, and so does the other.  My older

 6     son-in-law is a dentist, a private practitioner, and my younger

 7     son-in-law is also a bank employee.

 8             I have two grandchildren.  One is in the first class of primary

 9     school, and the younger one still has four years to go.  He's only three.

10             My wife retired a number of years ago.  She wasn't old enough to

11     retire, but she decided to retire prematurely for health reasons.  And

12     now she is looking after her grandchildren.

13             I have an apartment of my own, and both my daughters have their

14     own apartments and cars, and both families make an independent living.

15             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Petkovic, if I remember

16     well, you attended the wedding of one of your daughters - I'm sure this

17     was your youngest daughter - when you were granted provisional release.

18     Is that right?

19        A.   Yes, Your Honour, it was granted to me then, and I thank you for

20     that.  I swapped with a colleague of mine to be able to go when my

21     daughter was getting married.  Actually, they were waiting whether I

22     would get leave before she set the date of her marriage.  That's my

23     younger daughter.

24             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Last time, I put the question

25     to you, and you provided a very lengthy answer, but I wish to get back to

Page 49713

 1     this.  When you left the JNA to join the Croatian Army, I assume that

 2     this was an important moment in your life.  But I had asked you whether

 3     you were a member of the Communist Party in Yugoslavia at the time, and

 4     you answered by saying, Yes, because in order to have a career, it was

 5     necessary to be a member of the Communist Party, of the Yugoslav

 6     Communist Party.

 7             In the Yugoslav system, those people who reached the top, either

 8     in the army, or in the judiciary, or in diplomacy, or in the

 9     administration, did these people necessarily have to be members of the

10     Communist Party?

11        A.   Your Honours, I believe that in all walks of life, that meant a

12     lot.  It wasn't absolutely required, but it meant a lot.  In the Yugoslav

13     People's Army, there was agitation for all officers and NCOs to become

14     party members, and efforts were made for everybody to join the party.

15     And I must say that the strongest party organisation, with the largest

16     number of party numbers, was the JNA.  I think it was stronger than any

17     party organisation in any of the republics of the former Yugoslavia, at

18     least as far as I know.

19             And let me tell you one more thing.  The head of the Committee of

20     the Federal Secretariat of People's Defence, or National Defence, was a

21     general, so under the level of division, that was no longer the case,

22     because somebody would have the regular duties and next to that they

23     would also go about their party duties.  But at this highest level, you

24     would only have your party duties exclusively.

25             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Petkovic, when I

Page 49714

 1     questioned General Praljak, I put to him a number of questions based on

 2     the Constitution of Yugoslavia, of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina,

 3     and of Croatia.  This was some constitutional work I did.  On looking at

 4     the Yugoslav Constitution, since you were an officer in the JNA, I was

 5     struck by the fact that the Yugoslav Army took into account ethnic

 6     specificities, i.e., Serb, Croat, Muslim.  So this was taken into

 7     account.  When you were in command in the JNA, was this true to fact or

 8     was this just something you mentioned in the documents and everybody

 9     asked themselves the question?

10        A.   Your Honour, that was really the situation.  There were some

11     quotas.  Based on this or that number, it would be desirable to have a

12     certain number of Serbs in the rank of colonel, and so-and-so many Croats

13     or Muslims, et cetera, so the share of officer ethnicity was desirable,

14     but it wasn't always fully possible to implement that.  Croats weren't as

15     eager to join the army than the Serbs.  Slovenians were even less eager

16     to do so, and there were -- the fewest were Kosovo Albanians.  So there

17     was much effort invested to have some Kosovo Albanians join in order to

18     keep up that ethnic balance, but it was never up to the desired level.

19     As for Croats, their share was about 12 per cent, and that is a very

20     small number compared to the overall share of Croats in the then

21     Yugoslavia.

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Under the aegis of

23     Marshal Tito, who was a Croat, within the JNA, if you were a Croat, did

24     that mean that you were promoted faster, or did this have no impact

25     because of the quota system and everybody had their turn?

Page 49715

 1        A.   No, Your Honour, the fact that Tito was a Croat didn't mean much.

 2     I think the most generals from Croatia were from a region called Lika,

 3     but they weren't Croats but ethnic Serbs.  So if -- and when your seven

 4     or eight generals were to be promoted, there were efforts to have a

 5     certain balance, to have, let's say, two Croats and one Slovenian, but

 6     then there would be also three Serbs, because they were the most numerous

 7     ethnicity in the JNA.

 8             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] When you exercised command

 9     within the JNA, as part of your training, all the training you underwent

10     in the JNA, did you attend any training courses abroad in the Eastern

11     Bloc, as it was called - in Hungary, for instance - Eastern Bloc

12     countries?  Did you go abroad to see how the other armies operated, how

13     command was organised, and what the practices were, or was your training

14     solely done within the Yugoslav Army?

15        A.   Your Honours, there was a so-called exchange of persons at

16     certain levels in training.  I never went abroad, but there were some

17     people who went to the Soviet Union - there weren't many, though - and

18     possibly to other Eastern Bloc countries where there were military

19     schools.  But I know that some went to the Soviet Union.  One of my

20     bosses, while I was a teacher, also graduated from the Artillery and

21     Ballistics School, I believe it was called, in Russia, and he was my

22     superior, so some officers did go; not very many, but some exchange

23     existed.  Likewise, the JNA trained some personnel from other countries.

24     But as far as I remember, nobody came from the West then.  Some were from

25     non-aligned countries, and others were members of movements, such as the

Page 49716

 1     Polisario, or Arafat's men, Libyans, especially in the navy, and for

 2     three months, I had the chance to teach artillery to a group of Libyans.

 3             JUDGE PRANDLER:  With your permission, Mr. President, I would

 4     only like to say that according to my knowledge, and of course I do not

 5     claim to be an expert on these issues, mainly in the 1960s, 1970s, and

 6     later on, too, a number of Yugoslav officers went also to the West,

 7     mainly to the United States and to other countries.

 8             Thank you.

 9             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I would like to thank my

10     colleague for having specified this.  This was to be my next question.  I

11     wanted to know whether officers of the Yugoslav Army went to the West,

12     i.e., France or the United States.  I wanted to know whether there was

13     any co-operation with the West.

14        A.   Yes, Your Honour, Judge Prandler's right.  It was a time --

15     although, actually, at that time I wasn't in the JNA, and if I was, I was

16     a cadet, a low-ranking army man.  It was at the time when tensions were

17     high with Russia and when the West helped in arms and materiel, helped

18     Yugoslavia.  You have Shermans, the Howitzers, 155 Howitzers, and other

19     weapons that arrived from the West as a sort of reward to the Yugoslav

20     leadership, who distanced itself from the Russians, and to deflate,

21     perhaps, a threat from the East towards Yugoslavia.  And at the time,

22     some people did go, but not in large numbers.  They did go to the West,

23     but not in large numbers.

24             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Last question on this topic.

25             You, yourself, when you were serving in the JNA, did you take

Page 49717

 1     part in any military operations, operation manoeuvres, with other

 2     countries?  Did you take part in any of these large manoeuvres?  These

 3     were peaceful, of course, but these were military manoeuvres.

 4        A.   No, Your Honours, I did not participate in that.  I was a

 5     candidate on one occasion for a peace operation, I think it was, after

 6     the latest Israel-Lebanese war, but a colleague went instead of me.  And

 7     in some exercises -- no, I didn't take part in any such exercises.  And

 8     to be quite frank, I can't remember whether there was any joint

 9     manoeuvres with the JNA -- between the JNA and a neighbouring country,

10     for instance.  I can't remember.

11             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I will now address another

12     topic which your counsel did not address.

13             The question was mentioned several times.  I would like to know

14     what you think about the notion of All People's Defence.  In your view,

15     what does this mean, "All People's Defence"?

16        A.   Your Honours, at the time, when the political leadership of the

17     then Yugoslavia considered that they had an enemy, an enemy mostly in the

18     West, but it didn't believe its great friend in the East, either, didn't

19     trust them too much, either, a theory was developed which allegedly gave

20     good results through the Second World War, the theory of an armed people

21     as a force to be reckoned with, a force that was invincible.  And on that

22     basis, the so-called concept of All People's Defence or Total National

23     Defence was developed, so that everybody in the society had a role to

24     play.  Everybody had a war plan, everybody was part and parcel of this

25     general effort and had tasks within the framework of the general plan of

Page 49718

 1     Total National Defence or All People's Defence.  And Yugoslavia, in this

 2     way, wished to raise 5 to 6 million people able to resist what was called

 3     a total aggression, because nobody thought that Italy -- a country -- one

 4     country like Italy could attack Yugoslavia; it was backed by everything

 5     else, all the other states in which that country was an ally.  Or if

 6     relations with the East deteriorated, no one thought that one eastern

 7     country would be alone in its appetites towards Yugoslavia but that it

 8     meant a whole bloc being the aggressor.

 9             So viewing the situation like that, they thought that the West

10     was the principal foe, principal adversary, but reserving the right that

11     not even a great friend from the East might always be a great friend.

12     And so Yugoslavia was prepared for the worst possible situation, that it

13     might be attacked by one or both blocs, according to spheres of interest,

14     that something would then, if an attack came about, that something would

15     come to belong to the East and something to the West.  And I think that

16     the Drina River was a sort of division between East and West, and that

17     was the worst-case scenario which the leadership considered at the time;

18     that is to say, that Yugoslavia might be attacked at one and the same

19     time by both the Warsaw Pact and NATO, and that is why they devised this

20     system of mass arming -- when I say "arming," I mean it quite literally,

21     the mass arming of all structures of society.

22             Let me just give you an example, the aluminium combine in

23     Sibenik, for example.  In the anti-air defence system, I think it had

24     more resources and materiel than two brigades.  Everything was bought by

25     the workers, by setting aside a portion of their incomes.  Or, for

Page 49719

 1     example, Zenica, the steelworks at Zenica had 10 tanks which belonged to

 2     the workers of the steelworks.  They weren't new tanks, but they were

 3     either T-34 Russian tanks or the Shermans, or whatever.  Nothing was

 4     thrown away.  Everything was maintained and stored, and Yugoslavia was a

 5     real depot and warehouse.  Look at what's happening in Albania.  If

 6     something explodes in the north, there might be a detonation somewhere

 7     else or not.  That was how they were linked.

 8             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You explained a moment ago that

 9     in Yugoslavia, you were preparing against an attack of the Warsaw Pact or

10     NATO.  As you know, NATO at some point bombed Belgrade and its

11     surroundings.  You, as a former Yugoslav citizen turned Croat, what were

12     your feelings about this?

13        A.   Well, I don't really know what my feelings were, how I felt in

14     that respect.  It was the first time -- now, although I was a long way

15     away, it was the first time that I could follow what a war with NATO

16     forces would look like; war at a distance, as we used to call it.  He's

17     destroying you, bombing you.  Now, the way in which NATO attacked

18     Yugoslavia, I do not accept.  I do not accept that method.  It is not

19     acceptable, because the Chinese Embassy, Yes, you can destroy a

20     television station, but at night, when there's no programme, the

21     infrastructure being Novi Sad, whereas the front is 700 kilometres away

22     in Kosovo.  So your not confronting an army over there; you are choosing

23     other targets.  And then you say that a train was accidentally bombed and

24     destroyed as it entered a certain region, and so on.

25             So this was a war -- well, I also followed events in Iraq, but

Page 49720

 1     this was closer, closer to home.  And then I saw that it was might and

 2     power that was being used in a too-uncontrolled way to inflict damage,

 3     damage to everything, but least of all to the army.

 4             And let me tell you when the Serb army, the JNA, withdrew from

 5     Kosovo, the Americans were surprised to see so many tanks, because they

 6     were firing somewhere, and columns of tanks were leaving Kosovo when

 7     there was a truce, and then they asked, Where are the ones that they

 8     destroyed?  So it was a war to destroy the infrastructure and instill

 9     fear in the people and bring the people in a situation -- you know, if

10     you keep cutting off electricity or use special means to destroy

11     communication lines, or whatever, a long way from the front, and you

12     don't have the courage to send in your land forces to clear up the area,

13     then there's something -- well, regardless of the fact that NATO is a

14     democratic army, wishing to instill a democratic order, I don't think

15     that that's what they did in Serbia.  However, they have a justification,

16     which is accepted as such.  Well, you see, that's it.  That's the

17     situation, and that's how I viewed it.  If you lose one plane, you have

18     100 planes to find it and pull it out.  The fact that hundreds of Serb

19     ones were destroyed, never mind.

20             So it was interesting to follow all this happening from a

21     distance, and then you can engage in an analysis of the situation from a

22     distance.  So I was a bit surprised that that was the way a war was being

23     conducted under new circumstances and conditions.  Everything was done at

24     a distance.  Everything relied on technology.  Everything was resolved by

25     throwing -- not the army, but the people throwing to their knees.  The

Page 49721

 1     Serb army, actually, didn't suffer too much.  They didn't destroy any

 2     corps command, or brigade command, or anything like that.  They didn't

 3     even send in their army.  They tried to use their helicopters, but when

 4     they saw that they were being shot down, they didn't use them anymore

 5     either.  To bring the people to their knees.

 6             So that's my view of the operation, and I really did think that

 7     it would happen along the front-lines.  And, of course, if you happen to

 8     see a column along the way, it would be dealt with militarily.  But to

 9     attack a structure of that kind in a country, I really couldn't have

10     envisaged that.

11             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thanks to your answer, I can

12     establish a connection with what General Praljak told us.  He told us

13     that while he exercised his command either as a volunteer or when he

14     replaced you, he had been in contact with an American officer, whose name

15     I will not mention.  This American officer came on the spot on several

16     occasions.

17             As far as you know, when you were in command of the HVO, the

18     Main Staff of the HVO, were you aware of the fact that there was an

19     American presence, or did you know nothing about it, or was there no

20     American presence?  What can you tell me about that?

21        A.   You mean in Bosnia-Herzegovina?

22             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

23        A.   Well, of course there were some of their officers in

24     Bosnia-Herzegovina, and they were led by one of our -- I think he was a

25     Croat by origin, an NCO who was there and who went to Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Page 49722

 1             What?  I can't hear what people are saying.

 2             But as an officer, well, I was with him a few times, but I can't

 3     remember his name now.  I will remember by tomorrow.  But, anyway, they

 4     went down there to size up the situation, and I assume that among the

 5     UNPROFOR people, there were those who were there, installed there.

 6             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Praljak, have I made a

 7     mistake when I put my question?

 8             THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour.  I would

 9     just like to say this:  General Petkovic says with that American -- well,

10     there was a Croat with the American, so ask him whether that other one

11     was an American soldier, wearing an American uniform as well, the man

12     accompanying the American presence.

13             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, both of them were American

14     soldiers.  They were American soldiers.  I just said that I knew one of

15     these who knew Croatian, and he went around in Bosnia with them and

16     around Croatia as well.

17             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One point of detail which did

18     not appear when General Praljak testified.  These American officers, were

19     they wearing an American uniform or were they in plain clothes?

20        A.   Your Honours, they wore American uniforms.  I think they were

21     navy blue in colour, with all the insignia and designation of rank and so

22     on.  And I thought that they were there quite legally.  And they didn't

23     hide from anybody, the ones I knew.  They were there in full view.  They

24     would announce themselves, they would talk to us, so I assume -- well,

25     they didn't want to uncover their true mission.  They had a mission of

Page 49723

 1     some kind, but they moved around quite openly, wearing their uniforms and

 2     so forth.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] According to you, were they

 4     advisers or involved in the intelligence services?

 5        A.   Well, they were intelligence officers, first and foremost.  They

 6     didn't advise anyone.  They were desirous of information.  And on one or

 7     two occasions with our man -- well, not "our man," but the man who was

 8     the Croat by origin, I met him three or four times, but they came to see

 9     what was happening and things like that.  They did their work and acted

10     quite properly.  They protected what they were doing and that was their

11     responsibility.

12             MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I think I should say

13     that in line 23 of the transcript, it would appear as if General Petkovic

14     is saying that the Americans were intelligence officers, but in Croatian

15     he used the word -- he said a sentence to this effect: that they most

16     probably were.  But you could ask him.  That would be best.

17             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  So you did not know

18     exactly, because my question was very clear.  I was wondering whether

19     they were military advisers, as we see them sometimes, or whether they

20     were intelligence officers.  I thought that they were doing intelligence

21     work, but Mr. Kovacic said that you thought that they were rather doing

22     that.  So could you perhaps clarify?

23        A.   Yes, that's what I said, Your Honours.  An intelligence officer

24     is not going to say, Listen here, Petkovic, I'm an intelligence officer

25     and I'm going over there.  So you have to assess this.  Perhaps he

Page 49724

 1     wasn't.  But these were people who were interested in many things.  Now,

 2     whether he took a leave of absence, a month's holiday, to come to

 3     Bosnia-Herzegovina and put on an American uniform, I don't know.  Whether

 4     he was an intelligence officer or not, I can't claim that either.  He was

 5     an officer.  They were officers and NCOs.

 6             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  So obviously they

 7     were not having a holiday there.  But if I understand correctly, in 1992

 8     and 1993 and 1994 there were, on the ground, the European Mission,

 9     UNPROFOR, journalists from the world press, as well as American officers.

10     Am I forgetting anyone?

11        A.   Well, Your Honours, there was the UNPROFOR, there was the

12     European Observer Mission, there were the military observers who were

13     independent and separate, there were representatives of the UNHCR, the

14     International Red Cross Committee, and there were those who didn't

15     provide a lot of assistance but wanted to see a whole lot of things, and

16     they were the ones that collected up information and intelligence.  And,

17     you know, the governments of all the countries who were interested had,

18     in a way, in addition to UNPROFOR and their forces there, to check out

19     certain information in other ways, too, resort to other means.

20             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  We understood that

21     some countries, who will remain nameless, had sent their agents there.  I

22     will come back to the Americans now.  They were visible because they were

23     wearing uniforms.  When they were moving about, did they have some sort

24     of an authorisation?  What were they doing when they reached this

25     check-point, or just the fact that they were wearing an American uniform

Page 49725

 1     allowed them to go anywhere in an easier way than displaying an American

 2     Express card?

 3        A.   Well, let me tell you, nobody stopped any groups like that or

 4     checked them.  They would take a look at the uniform, saw that they were

 5     members of some armed force, and there were so many soldiers and army

 6     members in Bosnia, you could always say you belonged to SpaBat, or,

 7     BritBat, or the Canadian Battalion, the Nordic Battalion, or who knows

 8     which other ones, so if you -- if there were just two or three people in

 9     a vehicle, of course you would be let through.  There was no problem in

10     being let through, in passing through.  They would say they were members

11     of the international forces, and they would be let through.

12             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I'm coming now to a sensitive

13     question.

14             When the HVO launched a military operation, whichever that may

15     be - I will not go into the details - I was wondering whether those

16     American officers were aware, or whether you were doing that behind their

17     back in order for them not to know, or was the situation such that you

18     had nothing to hide and you knew that they would not shop you to the ABiH

19     or to the Serbs?

20        A.   Your Honours, as far as the operations were concerned,

21     particularly offensive ones, we had nothing to show, because there were

22     no operations on the scale that would be of interest to an American

23     officer.  Whether we would work within an area of 100 metres or not, that

24     was it.  So the representatives of the nearest UNPROFOR unit would go out

25     into the field and see what was going on, and if they felt it was

Page 49726

 1     necessary to send out some more monitors, then they would go and control

 2     an area of, say, 60 kilometres, and then the European Observers would

 3     hear about this and they would get there, and then you had a whole array

 4     of international organisations, and finally you would see that the HVO

 5     had taken Feature 504, for example, or had lost control of Feature 708.

 6     But you would have six types of various international organisation

 7     representatives there, because each one of them had -- there was some

 8     shooting going on, and everybody wanted to report back first.  So they

 9     would all find themselves on the spot.

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  I'm going to ask

11     clearer questions or with more detail.

12             I was wondering whether you personally spoke to those American

13     officers or with other officers.

14        A.   I talked to this one who was from Croatia originally.  I think he

15     was from Tomislavgrad, but left when he was a young man and joined the

16     army.  So I think I talked to him, but we didn't discuss anything

17     special.  He said, Well, we'd just like to come and see what's going on.

18     We're just moving through, that's what he said.  He wasn't very talkative

19     and didn't say much.  A man of few words.  And that's the kind of people

20     they were, because if you sent talkative people out, that wouldn't have

21     been a good thing.  The less you talked about what you were doing, the

22     better, from their point of view.

23             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I'm going to look at the three

24     events at stake here:  The 9th of May, Sovici and Doljani in April, and

25     the third event Stupni Do.  I was wondering, as regards those three

Page 49727

 1     events, whether one of those officers would have said to you, face to

 2     face, General Petkovic, please explain to us what happened.  Were you

 3     asked to give some sort of explanation?  Because I assume that they had

 4     to report back to their relevant authorities, so I was wondering whether

 5     you had a position on that.

 6        A.   Your Honours, you may not believe me, but here's what I have to

 7     say:  They never came to the command to ask what was going on.  When they

 8     did come, they -- it was as if nothing was going on anywhere.  They have

 9     their own plan of work.  On the 9th of May, I wasn't able to see or hear

10     any one of them.  Only on the 10th of May, in the evening, I think it was

11     when I arrived at Kiseljak, there was General Prado - that was his name,

12     I think - a Spaniard who was a member of the joint UNPROFOR command at

13     Kiseljak, and I had a word with him.  And I waited for Halilovic to come

14     on the following day to have a meeting with him.  Likewise,

15     General Morillon, who contacted us more than anybody else, didn't tell

16     such stories either, like, Now I'm going to draft an agreement, you're

17     going to sign it, and then we'll implement it.  They never interfered.

18     They didn't ask questions, they didn't pass judgement.  And to be honest,

19     when I read a report the Spanish wrote, I was amazed at what I could read

20     there.

21             When it comes to Sovici and Doljani, and more generally the

22     entire Konjic area, from the 13th of April on, they were unable to access

23     the area.  On the 8th of May, in Mostar, they requested the 4th Corps to

24     finally let them enter that area.  I found out about that later, because

25     there were three ambassadors who had come to visit.  They were blocked

Page 49728

 1     and couldn't enter those areas.  General Pellnas tried to organise

 2     something like that, but was unsuccessful.  I was there three or four

 3     times.  There are documents containing my protests, et cetera.  Although

 4     it was agreed otherwise, SpaBat would take me Kostajnica, and we would

 5     wait four hours and then we would return.  I was only able to enter our

 6     church in Konjic.  That's what I was able to reach.  The furthest I could

 7     go was Kostajnica, but I was never able to go seven kilometres further to

 8     Klis.

 9             And I went to Ostrozac, where I had a very unpleasant

10     conversation with SpaBat, because some of our people said, Protect us, we

11     won't fight, there are over 100 civilians here.  And then they handed

12     over their rifles to the Spanish, but the Spanish, pressurized by Zuka

13     and his people, delivered these 50 to 60 of our soldiers to Zuka.  And I

14     was -- I felt very uncomfortable.  I was very struck by that.  They could

15     have protected them, because if the UNPROFOR makes a promise that they

16     would do something, then they should have, even if it means using force.

17     I even told them, Well, do use force once, and then such a situation will

18     never reoccur.

19             Let me tell you of an experience on the Road of Salvation.  There

20     was a BritBat.  Probably two HVO soldiers were provoking them, but they

21     lost their lives, because they opened fire at them.  And then there was a

22     discussion about that, and, well, we didn't want to make things worse.

23     But I can tell you, later on nobody dared provoke them anymore.  But you

24     cannot say that a check-point, manned by three soldiers, can stop five

25     APCs.  Place a police car here on this road with five police officers,

Page 49729

 1     whoever is daring enough will break through with his car, and not to

 2     speak about five UNPROFOR APCs.  But they would stop and speak for 10 or

 3     20 minutes, and then make a report, Well, they stopped us at the

 4     check-point.  But why did you stop?  Because there's no way you can stop

 5     an APC there.  An APC is armed with a machine-gun, and at the check-point

 6     there are three to five men with rifles, no more than that.

 7             And that was the suggestion I made to General Morillon.  I told

 8     him, Come on, be more energetic in your conduct.  But let me not go

 9     deeper into that.

10             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, certainly, you are

11     addressing something which I hadn't contemplated.  It is true that in a

12     number of UNPROFOR reports, it appears that the HVO had established

13     check-points.  I'm saying "the HVO," but when I look at the military

14     documents of the ABiH, I think the same would apply, so I am not

15     establishing a selection here.  At some of the HVO check-points, there

16     were soldiers who were preventing UNPROFOR from passing.  When I see

17     that, I say to myself that they should have passed all the same because

18     they are aboard APCs.

19             Can you tell me whether UNPROFOR managed to get through or not?

20     If they had managed to get through, would the HVO have fired at them?

21        A.   Let me tell you, Your Honours, anything could have happened.  But

22     let me give you the following example:  The BritBat at Vitez.  There was

23     no stopping them with any check-points.  When they start with four of

24     their Warriors, Warrior vehicles, once they start moving, everybody

25     would -- nobody would dare to try to stop them.  And when the UNPROFOR

Page 49730

 1     came, they would stop and then engage in talks, Let me see who you are,

 2     et cetera.  I took rides with the Spaniards like that.  Riding with them

 3     to Kiseljak would have taken forever.  But I also rode with the British.

 4     You know where they would stop.  If the destination of our journey was

 5     Prozor, and that's the only place we stopped.  And on the way there, they

 6     passed a number of check-points of both the HVO and the ABiH.  It all

 7     depended on how they behaved.  The commander of the BritBat said, Your

 8     commander signed that we have freedom of movement, and nobody is going to

 9     stop me.  And that's how he went to Zenica and to Visoko, where the ABiH

10     was, and that's the same way they moved between Visoko and Busovaca.

11     That was the difference between them.  Some of them were soft and waved

12     sheets of paper about, which they weren't obliged to do, if it says

13     "Freedom of Movement," and nobody had anti-armour weapons at those

14     check-points because those check-points were meant for your own army and

15     not for stopping the enemy.

16             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] If I've understood you

17     correctly, because this is the first time -- even though the trial has

18     been ongoing for four years, it's the first time that this issue is

19     raised, you say that when, in the reports of the Spanish Bat, it is

20     mentioned that the HVO was preventing people from passing, that's not

21     quite what was happening, because if they'd wanted to, they could have

22     gone through.  What they usually did, they stopped off and talked to the

23     people who were there, and then in the report they stated that they had

24     been prevented from going through, whereas the British acted differently.

25     They were on board their vehicles, they drove through, and there was no

Page 49731

 1     problem.  That is what you're saying, isn't it?

 2        A.   Yes, exactly, Your Honour.  He showed everybody that he had a

 3     warrant of freedom of movement, and nobody's going to stop him.  And on

 4     the 29th of June, when they drove me, they weren't shot at by anybody.

 5     They said, We are not going to stop before we take the general to his

 6     destination.

 7             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It's a shame that I hear about

 8     it so late.  Had I known before, when the Spaniards came to testify here,

 9     I would have shown them their reports and I would have put the question

10     to them directly.  This is something I am discovering only now.  Most

11     importantly, it's on the transcript.

12             So all this came from the American officers.  As far as I'm

13     concerned, it's all an open question.  If you remember, Colonel Skender

14     came here.  He was a member of the French Foreign Legion, and he became

15     an officer of the HVO.  Ante Roso was also a member of the French Foreign

16     Legion, if I remember correctly; so was Gotovina, and there must be a

17     number of other people also.  The fact that there was a Croatian presence

18     there, people who had been officers in the French Army, was this just a

19     question of chance or was it important to have men on the ground who had

20     served in the French Army?  I put the question to Colonel Skender.

21     Remember, he came here to defend the Croats.  But I didn't belabour the

22     point.  Since you were head of the Main Staff, you might have some idea.

23        A.   About Colonel Skender, I can only say that he told you the truth.

24     When he came to Croatia, he didn't have any special tasks.  He just

25     wanted to join the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina.  Initially, he really

Page 49732

 1     visited those people, advised them, because he wasn't a man who would sit

 2     around all day.  He would move about.  If you give him a vehicle, he

 3     would visit two brigades, talk to people, try to explain things to them.

 4     And then, whether it was in October 1993 or whenever, when he became

 5     commander, I don't know if Roso was a chief when Skender became

 6     commander, but, anyway, I believe that upon the request of General Roso,

 7     he agreed to take over the Command of the OZ South-West Herzegovina until

 8     somebody else can be found to replace him, and that's when he learned

 9     that it is one thing to be a person without a commanding duty, who is

10     free to move about and advise people, and quite another thing when you're

11     a commander, with all the responsibilities that go with that post.  So I

12     don't know how long he held out, how long he stayed in that position.

13             As for General Roso, I was surprised by his -- by the fact that

14     he agreed to take over that duty, because he had already been in the

15     Croatian Army.  I'm not sure what the brigade in the Croatian Army was

16     called that Roso commanded.  He also had a group of people of, I don't

17     know, maybe up to 100 people, and Roso was also happy to move about from

18     Slavonia to Dalmatia and Dubrovnik.  He was also a guy who wouldn't stay

19     put in one place.  He was always with some special units, as they were

20     called, and he had 20 or 30 of these from Osijek to Split and further on.

21     And that's why I was surprised by the fact that Ante Roso came to join us

22     down there, but otherwise I didn't object to that.  He agreed to come and

23     take over that duty.

24             And as far as Gotovina is concerned, he was a non-commissioned

25     officer in the French Army and became a high-ranking general in the HV,

Page 49733

 1     but Gotovina accepted to be the commander of the Operative Zone of Split.

 2     And he did a good job there because he was a capable man, but he also

 3     listened to his advisers.

 4             By the way, let me tell you, they weren't adventurers.

 5             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General, what I wanted to know

 6     is whether it was pure coincidence, the fact that all these people were

 7     there on the ground, or was it not a coincidence?

 8        A.   No, it wasn't a coincidence.  They weren't there by chance.  We

 9     trusted those people, although they had previously commanded smaller

10     units.  Skender did have a high rank in the French Army, but the other

11     two didn't.  However, we thought that they had great wartime experience

12     and that they would be very useful in working with those units.

13             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Praljak, we'll have to

14     stop because we only have a few minutes left on the tape.  If you're

15     quick, please do --

16             THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] If I may, I would like to

17     make a remark that there is a misunderstanding, because you asked a

18     question quite some time ago, and your question was whether the Croats

19     who were sending these people to the Foreign Legion because they wanted

20     them to be prepared once they returned, or whether that was not the case.

21             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, that was the meaning of my

22     question.

23             General Petkovic, you have answered the questions.  We will have

24     to stop now.  The tapes have run out.  It's 6.00.

25             On Monday -- well, this was a starter.  I shall discuss the main

Page 49734

 1     dish on Monday and discuss your role as indicated in the indictment and

 2     the JCE.  Then we will look into the documents.  You have a few days to

 3     prepare for this.

 4             I wish everyone a pleasant evening.

 5                           [The accused stands down]

 6                           --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 5.59 p.m.,

 7                           to be reconvened on Monday, the 22nd day of

 8                           February, 2010, at 2.15 p.m.