Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 51874

 1                           Tuesday, 8 February 2011

 2                           [Prosecution Closing Statement]

 3                           [Open session]

 4                           [The Accused Pusic not present]

 5                           [The accused entered court]

 6                           --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.

 7             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, please call the

 8     case.

 9             THE REGISTRAR:  Good morning, Your Honours.  Good morning

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

11     et al.  Thank you, Your Honours.

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

13             Today is Tuesday, the 8th of February, 2011.  Good morning to

14     everybody.  And without further ado, I'm going to ask Mr. Scott to

15     proceed.  He's going to continue with his closing arguments.

16             MR. SCOTT:  Good morning, Mr. President.  Good morning each of

17     Your Honours.  Good morning, Counsel, the accused, all those in and

18     around the courtroom who are assisting us.

19             I first offer my apologies to the interpreters yesterday for my

20     speed and probably for the effects of my cold, and I'll try to do

21     somewhat better today.  I'm not promising I'll succeed, but I'll try.

22             We left off yesterday evening with an important decision point,

23     and that is the complete and full recognition and realisation that

24     Izetbegovic, the BiH authorities, the Muslim people generally in Bosnia,

25     were not accepting -- would not accept Herceg-Bosna.  I told you at the

Page 51875

 1     end of the day that at that point Tudjman, those around him, including

 2     these accused, then faced an important decision point.  They could either

 3     change their strategy, perhaps soften their position or lower their goals

 4     or what have you, or they could choose to, if I can put it this way, up

 5     the ante.  They could choose to take the conflict to a whole new level,

 6     and unfortunately, it was the latter course that was selected.

 7             Now, there are a lot of other important things that happened in

 8     the last few months of 1992, and if I had the time, I would love the

 9     opportunity to take the Chamber virtually week by week of the Tudjman

10     statements, the statements by these six accused, the events, the

11     meetings, the planning, but again, unfortunately, we don't have time for

12     that.

13             There was an important meeting in November 1992, finally a

14     meeting, an Assembly, a convention of the HDZ-BiH.  Although the party

15     had been sidelined or made inactive, put on ice, as some of the witnesses

16     said, it must have continued to be a thorn in the collective

17     Tudjman-Boban side, and finally in the party Assembly in November 1992,

18     once and for all Boban took full power not only in name but in reality --

19     or not only -- I should reverse that.  Not only in reality, but finally

20     in name as well.  The moderates are all finally forced out.  Brkic is

21     gone.  Pelivan, the moderate Croat prime minister of Bosnia is gone,

22     replaced by the Defence witness Mile Akmadzic, who at the same time is

23     elected -- hand selected by Boban as one of his five vice-presidents of

24     the party.

25             A lot of things happen, important things, but let me wrap up 1992

Page 51876

 1     in this way:  By December of 1992, Kordic, Boras, and Akmadzic had once

 2     and for all cleansed the HDZ-BiH party of most if not all of its moderate

 3     leaders, even though Kljuic and many of the others had actually received

 4     more votes than Boban and his faction in the 1990 elections.  The HDZ-BiH

 5     was in no sense the same party that had stood for election in 1990 with

 6     the moderate Kljuic winning the most votes.  The Bosnian Croats were

 7     never a monolithic group or a people with only one point of view.  Boban

 8     and his ilk had no basis to claim to represent or speak for all Bosnian

 9     Croats.  Indeed, Tudjman plainly recognised this saying to Herceg-Bosna

10     leaders on the 24th of November, 1995:

11             "From the very beginning, the Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina

12     were not united, because objectively they could not be united because

13     they lived in different circumstances and conditions."

14             That's at P08489.

15             At no time since November 1990 had their been open, free, or

16     democratic elections.  No free and open popular election had ever voted

17     for the HDZ-BiH in this form, in the form that it had taken by late 1992.

18     No one had elected the HVO government.  The Muslims had never voted for

19     or been given the opportunity to vote for Herceg-Bosna or for the HVO

20     government.  Again, and for that matter, neither had the Croats.  The

21     accused Petkovic answered the following questions under oath:

22             "Q. When did the Muslims vote for Herceg-Bosna?

23             "A. The Croats didn't vote for Herceg-Bosna either.

24             "Q. You're absolutely right, sir.  No one elected Boban or Prlic

25     or Kordic or Bender or Boras.  No one elected them legitimately to any of

Page 51877

 1     these positions."

 2             By December of 1992, the Herceg-Bosna HVO governmental and

 3     military machinery was well developed.  Since taking charge in August,

 4     Jadranko Prlic had turned his HVO HZ-HB into a fully operational

 5     government which was by far the most powerful Herceg-Bosna engine,

 6     combining full executive, legislative, and administrative powers,

 7     empowered and actually engaged in supervising the work of the municipal

 8     HVOs and even annulling any HVO work and local decrees which Prlic and

 9     his government thought inconsistent with Herceg-Bosna policy.  It was

10     Prlic, not Boban, who controlled all of the levers of the HVO government,

11     including the executive departments, which included defence, finance, and

12     the police.  It was Prlic, together with Bruno Stojic, who directed,

13     planned, financed, manned, armed, and fed the HVO armed forces.  It was

14     Stojic, not Boban, who chaired defence department meetings, prepared the

15     department's work programme, and appointed the vast majority of HVO

16     commanders.

17             Under the Herceg-Bosna HVO political and military leadership with

18     Bruno Stojic heading the Defence Department from 3 July 1992 forward, and

19     Milivoj Petkovic commanding the HVO military since the spring of 1992,

20     the HVO, by the late summer of 1992, was a substantially organised armed

21     force under a central command with functioning command and control.

22             By December 1992, Petkovic had prepared a report on the work of

23     the HVO armed forces since his arrival in Bosnia on the 14th of April,

24     1992, stating that:

25             "HVO forces are now successfully holding under their control 90

Page 51878

 1     per cent of the territory planned as the territory of the HZ-HB.  The

 2     territory planned as the territory of the HZ-HB.  And with better

 3     material support, they are willing and able to defend it."

 4             Petkovic reported that:

 5             "After three operative zones, 18 brigades, and several

 6     professional units had been formed in Herzegovina and Central Bosnia, all

 7     municipal staffs were abolished, which increased the quality of

 8     commanding and made the units more mobile.  In another December report,

 9     senior HVO commander Ivica Primorac," the same Primorac who switched from

10     HOS to the HVO when Blaz Kraljevic was murdered, "Primorac confirmed the

11     existence and operation of six 'professional HVO units' including the

12     Bruno Busic regiment (which had 'regularly executed its assigned task on

13     the entire territory of HZ-HB' and was relocating at the time its base of

14     operations to the Heliodrom), the Ludvig Pavlovic special purposes unit

15     (described as well equipped, well trained, and 'completely

16     professional'), the Convicts Battalion," Tuta's unit, "the Convicts

17     Battalion (based at the Heliodrom and described as a unit 'which gave a

18     maximum contribution to the liberation of Mostar ... ready to execute the

19     most difficult task at any time'), and the Vitezovi special unit in

20     Bosnia."

21             All of those were professional units under the control of the HVO

22     Main Staff and Department of Defence.

23             Continuing in his report, Petkovic described the HVO as the

24     "Croatian people's own armed forces."  Petkovic reported, quote, "the

25     defence of this territory and the command of units in most cases rests on

Page 51879

 1     'ordinary' men ... devoted to the ideas of the HZ-HB," and that "HVO

 2     forces are able to defend and keep under their control the territory of

 3     the HZ-HB."

 4             It is interesting to note in one version of Petkovic's report

 5     where it says -- it says:  "Officers of the Croatian Army have given

 6     great help to the HVO in organisation and command of forces," but then

 7     statements in his report about the Croatian Army's involvement in major

 8     operations in Bosnia during the period April, June 1992, the very time

 9     when the UN Security Council was complaining about the Croatian Army's

10     involvement in Bosnia, those parts of a -- one version of Mr. Petkovic's

11     report have been crossed out but are nonetheless still visible.  The

12     parts that mention the HV, the Croatian Army's involvement.  That is

13     P00907.

14             Petkovic confirmed these facts in his testimony.  By late June

15     1992, HVO operative zone commanders had been appointed, and by the end of

16     1992, the HVO brigade structure had replaced the Municipal Staffs.  The

17     Main Staff had direct communications with the commands of the operative

18     zones and various brigades, battalions, and other units were directly

19     linked to each operative zone.  The HVO professional units were directly

20     linked to the Main Staff.

21             According to Petkovic, every, I put a line under "every," HVO

22     unit which he -- I said what do you mean, when you're talking about HVO

23     units, what do you mean?  His answer was, well every unit in the official

24     HVO organisation.  Every HVO unit was under the command and control of

25     the HVO and, quote, "under the control of the person who was at the head

Page 51880

 1     of that body."  Petkovic confirmed that he had, quote, "he had authority

 2     over my commanders."  He testified, quote, "he had authority over my

 3     commanders," and that no HVO unit could exist on its own or act on its

 4     own.

 5             The professional officer and senior HVO commander Filip Filipovic

 6     fully confirmed these points.  Filipovic said that by the end of June

 7     1992, the HVO was in communication with its units.  There was the ability

 8     to command and control them with reporting mechanisms and other

 9     structures and processes in place, quote, "so it was a normal system of

10     command and control."

11             There has been a continuing Defence argument that the real

12     Bosnian Croat power was in the municipalities and that this was true

13     concerning the HVO armed forces.  As I addressed yesterday when I was

14     talking about the status and function or lack of function of the party,

15     that I would touch on that as one of the sometimes allegedly -- alleged

16     alternative power bases, if you will, that some of the accused like to

17     point to and say, well, the real power was over there.  Another one that

18     they have frequently pointed to was the HVO municipal authorities.  Well,

19     they're the ones that are really responsible.  They're the ones that have

20     the real power.

21             Not true.  Not true.

22             While HVO or HDZ-BiH municipal officials might have been more

23     directly involved with the Bosnian Croat paramilitary forces during the

24     earliest times, in 1991 to perhaps the spring of 1992, the evidence is

25     clear that this was no longer substantially the case by the second half

Page 51881

 1     of 1992 and certainly not in 1993.  Both the accused Petkovic and the

 2     commander Filipovic testified under oath that the so-called "Municipal

 3     Staffs" had come to an end by at least late 1992.  Petkovic testified:

 4             " ... we had moved on to a brigade structure ...  So in 1992, as

 5     far as I can remember, these Municipal Staffs were completely

 6     dismantled."

 7             The HVO commander Filipovic confirmed the same.  By the fall of

 8     1992, the HVO brigades had replaced the municipal staffs with improved

 9     command and control and increased mobility, and that by the end of 1992,

10     the HVO was a significant military force.  Petkovic and Filipovic, two

11     professional soldiers, both JNA trained, not witnesses for the

12     Prosecution, both testified consistently on that point.  HVO

13     municipalities -- municipal authorities did not control the HVO military.

14             In its report for the period May to December 1992, the Prlic

15     government stated:

16             "... following a decision in Travnik on 17 October 1992 ..., all

17     armed formations of the HVO were placed under the sole command, the sole

18     command, of the Main Staff, which resulted in the consolidation and

19     efficiency of the military operations of our units."

20             The same report confirmed still again that the HVO was, quote,

21     "the only military force for the defence of the territory of the HZ-HB."

22     Those -- that evidence can be found at P00128.

23             Both Petkovic and Filipovic testified that local civilian

24     authorities had no power to command or issue orders to HVO military

25     units.  Petkovic answered the following questions under oath -- we saw

Page 51882

 1     this yesterday but I touch on it briefly again on this particular point.

 2             "Your testimony in the Kordic case at page 26805-06."

 3             Answer to the question:

 4             "Your Honours, the orders followed the chain of command

 5     vertically from the Supreme Commander down to the Main Staff.  I didn't

 6     receive any orders outside of that.

 7             "Q.  Did you receive orders or directives from other politicians

 8     other than Mr. Boban at any time during your service as head of the armed

 9     forces of the HVO?

10             "A.  No, Your Honours.  Nobody outside this vertical chain of

11     chain of command, Boban, Stojic, issued orders to me or the army.

12             "Q.  And that's the case isn't it.

13             "A.  Yes, I'm saying no one issued orders to me outside that

14     chain of command."

15             Filipovic gave similar testimony.

16             "A.  The local civilian authorities did not have the power to

17     command the units or brigades.

18             "Q.  And would you agree that in your experience, applying this

19     to both yourself and Mr. Blaskic, as to military matters the

20     organisation, and especially combat, were, according to your Kordic

21     testimony, 'always within the command.'  They were not commanded by

22     politicians.  Do you stand by that, sir?

23             "A. In the territory where I was, nobody could command except

24     Blaskic, myself, and the brigade commanders.

25             "Q.   ... in any of your positions in the Central Bosnia

Page 51883

 1     operative zone, from 1992 until the spring of 1994, did you ever take a

 2     military order from a political or municipal leader?  An order.

 3             "A.  No."

 4             In fact, the HVO military was all the more the army of

 5     Herceg-Bosna which was dedicated to its sovereignty and its territory.

 6     In amendments to the decree on armed forces on the 17 of October, 1992,

 7     Herceg-Bosna adopted the oath which Your Honours heard at the swearing-in

 8     ceremony or the oath-taking ceremony of the Jure Francetic Brigade:

 9             "I swear that I shall faithfully and honourably perform the

10     duties required of me as a member of the HVO and that I shall obey

11     official commands and orders conscientiously and responsibly.  I swear

12     that I shall protect and defend my motherland of Herceg-Bosna, its

13     sovereignty, territorial integrity, and all its citizens - even if my

14     life is at stake."

15             The oath contains not a single word about Bosnia-Herzegovina and

16     its authorities but only the motherland of Herceg-Bosna, its sovereignty,

17     and territorial integrity.  It is simply too convenient for some to

18     suggest now that some sort of link or allegiance to Bosnia and

19     Herzegovina was implicit when it would simply have been too easy to write

20     exactly those words at the time if that had been the true intention.

21             I want a spend a few minutes talking about the various peace

22     plans, only a few minutes.  Some of the accused, and especially

23     Mr. Prlic, have spent significant parts of their cases at times and

24     arguments talking about the various peace plans, Cutileiro, Vance-Owen,

25     Owen Stoltenberg, et cetera.  The suggestion it seems to be that the

Page 51884

 1     international community had somehow endorsed or given its blessing to

 2     what the Herceg-Bosnans wanted to do.  That's not true.  In fact the

 3     Prosecution respectfully submits that you can spend a lot of time

 4     thinking and talking about the various peace plans but unless you are

 5     looking at something very, very specific, talking about the plans,

 6     frankly, doesn't get you very far, and I'll explain that just in a

 7     moment.

 8             I've looked at all the plans over the years a number of times.

 9     I've read them all several times, talked about them, Cutileiro,

10     Washington, Vance-Owen, et cetera, and here's what I submit to you in my

11     humble view:  No one from the international community ever drew a map and

12     gave it to the Herceg-Bosnans and said, this is what you want.  To be

13     more specific, no one from the international community ever drew the

14     borders of the Banovina on a map of Bosnia and told Tudjman and the

15     others, this is what you want.  What the parties wanted always started

16     with and remained with the parties.  What the Herceg-Bosnans wanted

17     always started with and stayed with the Herceg-Bosnans.  The parties

18     including the Herceg-Bosnans put forward what they wanted including the

19     maps.

20             Number 2:  No one from the international organisations told the

21     Herceg-Bosnans, quote, "I know you're frustrated with these negotiations.

22     Why don't you just go ahead and expel the Muslims from West Mostar and

23     destroy the old centre of Stolac and starve the men at Dretelj.  That's

24     okay."  No one ever said that.  No one ever endorsed that.  No one ever

25     gave it a green right.

Page 51885

 1             Number 3:  There is no agreement until there's an agreement,

 2     another way of saying it's not over until it's over.  And my good friend

 3     Ms. Nozica said it well on the 30th of September, 2006, at transcript

 4     page 7021, and I noted it then and I've been holding on to it ever since:

 5             "You can only talk about agreements if both sides agree.  You can

 6     only talk about an agreement if both sides agree."

 7             Precisely.  Until then, it's only talk.  It's only banter.  It's

 8     only back and forth.  It's always subject to change.  It's not over until

 9     its over.

10             Now, given the particular circumstances in the former Yugoslavia

11     and the nature of negotiations and talks there, I would actually take

12     that a step further.  "It's not over until it's been over for more than

13     just a couple of days."

14             Witness after witness ultimately said, and Bo Pellnas, the

15     international witness from Sweden, and Mr. Filipovic again, are two that

16     come immediately to mind.  Cease-fires and negotiations were a dime a

17     dozen.  Bo Pellnas sat on the stand and said, at one time I counted up

18     and there had been 73 cease-fires, 73 cease-fires -- no, sorry, 79, 79.

19     I asked him, well, you know, what did you think about that.  And Pellnas

20     said:

21             "Well, after a while in these conditions, you don't take much

22     notice of paperwork or oral statements.  You wait to see what happens ...

23     You wait and see what happens before you make any valuation of it."

24             And Filipovic agreed:

25             " ... all those documents, agreements, did not mean a thing for

Page 51886

 1     me when I spent hours every day being fired at."

 2             So as to the negotiations and peace plans, there's no agreement

 3     until there's an agreement.  It's not over until it's really over, and

 4     that's the situation.  And no more conclusions can be drawn from the

 5     peace plans much than that.

 6             If you take Cutileiro and Vance-Owen as the two examples, I

 7     submit to you that in both cases this is what it comes down to:

 8             Cutileiro:  The Herceg-Bosnans put forward their map, which is

 9     map 32 in the book of maps, and guess what, the Herceg-Bosna map looked a

10     lot like the Banovina.

11             B:  There was never a genuine meeting of the Muslim, Croat

12     (and/or Serb) minds.  The parties negotiated, maybe they went forwards

13     and backwards, but at the end of the day there was no agreement.  The

14     Muslims never agreed to a separate sovereign Croat space where the Croats

15     would be in complete control regardless of the actual demographics within

16     that space.  No final agreement.

17             I've searched and searched and there's no provision in any

18     proposed Cutileiro agreement which said, "If the Muslims don't agree, you

19     can expel, destroy, and pillage anyway."

20             If you look at the Vance-Owen, the Herceg-Bosnans put forward

21     their map, map 34, which looks a lot like the Banovina.

22             B:  There was never a genuine meeting of the Muslim, Croat

23     (and/or Serb) minds.  The parties negotiated, maybe they went forwards

24     and backwards, but at the end of the day there was no agreement.  The

25     Muslims never agreed to a separate sovereign Croat space where the Croats

Page 51887

 1     would be in complete control regardless of the actual demographics within

 2     that space.  No final agreement.

 3             B [sic]:  Again, I searched every footnote and clause of the

 4     Vance-Owen Plan.  There was no provision in any proposed Vance-Owen

 5     agreement which said, "If the Muslims don't agree, you can expel,

 6     destroy, and pillage anyway."

 7             Now, the only exception to this sort of very broad approach is if

 8     you want to look at something very, very specific, and in that case you

 9     need to look very carefully at the specific relevant language.  For

10     example, and highly relevant to the Prosecution case, is some language

11     that's buried, if you weren't looking for it you might not see it, but

12     it's the language that's part of the 25 March 1993 Vance-Owen papers that

13     were signed by Izetbegovic, P01398, e-court page 30.  It's buried in

14     Annex A, Section E, "Withdrawal of forces," which said, quote, in part:

15             " ... both Bosnian Army and HVO forces shall be deployed in

16     Provinces 3, 8, 9, and 10 under arrangements agreed between them."

17             And it was that language which then leads into the events in

18     April of 1993 and the proposed -- so-called proposed joint statement that

19     Boban signed but Izetbegovic never did.

20             So if you want to talk about peace plans, you can either talk

21     about them -- appear broadly, and I've put before you what the

22     Prosecution position is.  They don't really get you very far.  There were

23     talks, agreements, Herceg-Bosnans consistently put forward the Banovina

24     map.  There was never an agreement.  If you want to look at something

25     very specific, you can't play in generalities.  You've got to go to the

Page 51888

 1     exact specific language and see what that says.

 2             Now, turning back to the crimes -- or turning to the crimes in

 3     Herceg-Bosna.  They were large scale, widespread, and systematic.  And

 4     that's a very important part of this case, a feature of the evidence in

 5     this case.  The HVO behaviour was widespread, systematic, and on a large

 6     and continuing scale.  These were not the isolated or infrequent random

 7     acts of a few individual bad actors.  They were not, in essence, the

 8     results of a few HVO soldiers who had a bad night.  These were

 9     large-scale systematic crimes that followed a consistent pattern of

10     behaviour not just over a period of days or weeks but months.  They

11     occurred not only a few times, not only at a few locations, but all

12     across Herceg-Bosna, in Prozor, Stolac, Mostar, and Varos.  In October

13     1992 and January 1993, in April 1993, in July 1993, and October 1993.

14             The witness Peter Galbraith summed this up in response to

15     questions from Mr. Praljak:

16             "We expected convoys to go into Bosnia every single day.  We

17     expected convoys to go into Mostar every single day, and they were

18     obstructed practically every single day by the HVO.  And this was not a

19     group of rogue soldiers; this was a command decision by the HVO.  And

20     when we finally brought enough pressure to bear through Croatia, through

21     Croatia, in fact the convoys went through.  -- the shooting into East

22     Mostar was not some private individual shooting off -- shooting off --

23     ... the shooting into East Mostar was by artillery.  This was by an

24     organised military force that was shooting into civilian areas,

25     destroying an ancient cultural heritage, killing people.  The camps were

Page 51889

 1     not some kidnapping by an individual held in a basement, it was the

 2     holding of thousands of people in organised military-run camps in

 3     inhumane conditions.  The organised labour patrols was not some

 4     individual taken out with a gun to dig trenches but organised work

 5     parties.  These, in short, were the acts of an organised authority of

 6     which Mr. Boban was the political chief at the time and Mr. Praljak was

 7     the military chief, and that is why I held him responsible."

 8             The issuance of the January 1993 ultimatum was not the act of

 9     some local HVO soldiers -- soldier sitting in a house in Stolac but the

10     decision and act of the top Herceg-Bosna political and military

11     leadership following exactly the chain of command that you would have

12     expected.  Decision by Prlic, implementing order by the head of the

13     Defence Department, Stojic, implementing order by Petkovic.  Couldn't be

14     any clearer.  A decision is made.  It goes down the chain of command and

15     out to the HVO military forces for execution.

16             The siege of East Mostar was not the random act over a couple of

17     days by a few rogue individuals, but a systematic course of conduct from

18     May or June 1993 to the spring of 1994 all right in the face of and under

19     the nose of these six accused.  Many of them had their offices, their

20     daily offices, and even homes within metres, within metres of where these

21     events were taking place.

22             The establishment and operation of the transit visa and third

23     country deportation system was not the act of a couple of low-level

24     actors but the highly systematic expulsion of Muslims from Herceg-Bosna.

25     The use of hundreds if not thousands of Muslim men in forced labour over

Page 51890

 1     a period of -- over a period of, again, months was not a random act by a

 2     few individuals but a highly structured program with daily records.  You

 3     even saw the ledgers, the journals, these men going out, these men coming

 4     back day after day after day, unfortunately some of the men not coming

 5     back because they were killed doing labour on the front line.  Highly

 6     systematic.  Daily ledgers.  Daily ledgers that you've seen.

 7             The point is further made and reinforced by the fact that the

 8     accused or most of them were front and centre in connection with the

 9     launch of every major phase of the Herceg-Bosna campaign from Prozor in

10     October 1992 to late 1993.  Prozor in October 1992.  As we discussed

11     yesterday, the confrontation was fully expected.  Praljak said,

12     "Confrontation can be expected," to which Susak says, "We know that.

13     We've already been preparing for a week."  Prlic says, "Conflict with the

14     Muslims may be inevitable."  All of this leading up to the events in

15     October, the end of October in Prozor.  The die was cast.  Pushing

16     forward meant war, and they chose the course.

17             The 15 January ultimatum I just mentioned, Prlic-Stojic-Petkovic

18     chain of command.

19             The 3 April 1993 HVO HZ-HB meeting and the April ultimatum,

20     Prlic-Boban-Stojic decision, as part of the government meeting on the 3rd

21     of April, with co-ordinated action by Petkovic and Praljak promoting the

22     strategy in Central Bosnia.

23             30 June 1993.  Joint Prlic-Stojic proclamation, Petkovic arrest

24     order.  Arrest them all.  Take them all.

25             These men were at every single major phase.  October 1992,

Page 51891

 1     January 1993, April 1993, end of June 1993.  They were leading the

 2     charge.  They gave the decisions.  They gave the orders.

 3             A few comments on the Defence evidence generally, and of course

 4     the Defence could call whatever witnesses they wanted provided, of

 5     course, they were relevant and material and not unduly cumulative.  And

 6     of course they had the option not to call any witnesses or present any

 7     evidence at all.  That would certainly have been their right.  However,

 8     when Defence evidence is led, then like all evidence it is subject to

 9     comment and assessment.

10             The Defence combined called a total of 70 witnesses either viva

11     voce, Rule 92 ter, or Rule 92 bis.  Of those 70 witnesses, 61 were Croat.

12     Now, again in principle nothing wrong with that.  Croats have every much

13     right to appear in this institution and give testimony as anybody else,

14     but out of 70 witnesses, 61 were Croat, and well more than half of those

15     could fairly be described, at least in the Prosecution's submission, as

16     Herceg-Bosna and HVO insiders who were largely to varying degrees part of

17     the same programme and pursuing much or all of the same agenda as the

18     accused.  To name a few of those who testified publicly, Neven Tomic,

19     Zoran Buntic, Mile Akmadzic, Slobodan Bozic, Veso Vegar, Mirko Zelenika,

20     Ivan Bagaric.  All people who held senior positions in one or more of the

21     HVO Herceg-Bosna apparatus.  These men were all part of the Herceg-Bosna

22     family, so to speak, and their denials or explanations concerning HVO

23     programmes, policies, and behaviour must be assessed in, our respectful

24     submission, with that firmly in mind.

25             With the exception of the rule -- excuse me, of the four

Page 51892

 1     Rule 92 bis character witnesses presented by the Prlic Defence, the

 2     Defence did not call a single international witness.  Out of 70

 3     witnesses, only two Muslims were called on what we submit were narrow and

 4     secondary topics primarily dealing with arms shipments to the ABiH in

 5     1992, but having nothing to do with the crime base or Herceg-Bosna's

 6     expulsions, destruction, or imprisonment of Muslims.

 7             Excuse me.

 8             Before turning more specifically to some of the accused, I'm

 9     going to spend a few minutes talking about Mr. Prlic and Mr. Stojic.  The

10     Prosecution thinks it may assist the Tribunal, assist the Chamber, if we

11     look at a few of the other Tribunal cases that are focused in particular

12     on senior political or civilian officials.  As an introduction to that,

13     I'd like to refer to something written by Judge Meron in an essay

14     entitled:  "Crimes and accountability in Shakespeare."

15             "Accountability for crimes, a theme central to Shakespeare's

16     plays, is also extraordinarily pertinent to our times.  Newspapers have

17     reported on the care taken by the leaders of the former Yugoslavia to

18     order atrocities against enemy populations only in the most indirect and

19     euphemistic way.  Even the Nazi leaders constantly resorted to euphemisms

20     in referring to the Holocaust.  No explicit written order --"

21             My apologies.  I don't know how that happened.

22             "-- from Hitler to carry out the final solution has ever been

23     found.  No explicit written order from Hitler to carry out the final

24     solution has ever been found.  At the height of their power, the Nazis

25     treated the data on the killing of Jews as top secret.  Similarly, a high

Page 51893

 1     ranking member of the former security police told the South African Truth

 2     and Reconciliation Commission that written instructions to kill apartheid

 3     activists were never given.  Squad members who carried out the killings

 4     simply got a 'nod of the head or a wink-wink kind of attitude.'

 5             That is the reality most -- in the vast majority of time how

 6     these things occurred.  There's not going to be a written order that says

 7     "Kill all the Muslims on this day," or not very many of those.  There may

 8     be some that come close, but it's a nod-nod.  It's a wink-wink.  It's a

 9     go forth and doing this knowing what the consequences will be.

10             We can pause on the Milan Martic case.  Milan Martic was a Croat

11     Serb who held a number of senior positions related to Serb organisations.

12     He was the chief of the Serb police in Knin.  He was secretary for

13     internal affairs of the Serbian autonomous region of Krajina.  He was

14     minister of defence of the SAO Krajina.  At one point he was deputy

15     commander of the Territorial Defence, and eventually president of the

16     Republic of Serbian Krajina or the RSK.  During most of those periods he

17     was a senior civilian official with no explicit military powers.

18     Nonetheless, he was convicted based on his participation in a JCE of 16

19     counts involving persecution, murder, imprisonment, et cetera, and

20     sentenced to 35 years imprisonment.

21             Let's look at a couple of parts of the judgement.  And I just ask

22     the Chamber, as you see this language and you look at the jurisprudence

23     of the Tribunal, I invite the Chamber to consider how that might apply to

24     the accused in this case.

25             Milan -- this is from paragraph 448 of the trial judgement:

Page 51894

 1             "Milan Martic's contacts with other members of the JCE had

 2     already begun during the autumn of 1990 and intensified during 1991 and

 3     onwards.  The evidence shows that these contacts were close and direct

 4     and that as a result, substantive financial, logistical, and military

 5     support was rendered to the SAO Krajina and the RSK.  The evidence is

 6     clear that Milan Martic actively worked together with the other JCE

 7     participants to fulfil the objective of a united Serb state, something

 8     which he expressed publicly on several occasions between 1991 and 1995."

 9             Paragraph 452 of the judgement:

10             " ... during a meeting with Cedric Thornberry," a man known to

11     Your Honours, "on 14 June 1993, Milan Martic requested that Croats who

12     wished to leave the RSK sign statements that no one had put pressure on

13     them to leave.  Milan Martic was aware of the persecutory and coercive

14     atmosphere," the persecutory and coercive atmosphere, "which existed and

15     had existed in the SAO Krajina and RSK territory for a long time and that

16     those non-Serbs who expressed a desire to leave the territory did so

17     without ... a genuine choice in their displacement.  Moreover, there is

18     evidence that Milan Martic repeatedly and publicly opposed the return of

19     refugees."

20             453:

21             "The Trial Chamber therefore concludes that Milan Martic intended

22     to forcibly displace the non-Serb population from the territory of the

23     SAO Krajina and subsequently the RSK, and actively participated in the

24     furtherance of the common purpose of the JCE."

25             Momcilo Krajisnik, a Bosnian Serb who was president of the

Page 51895

 1     Bosnian Serb Assembly and an active member of the Presidency of the

 2     Bosnian Serb Republic.  I thought it was interesting in looking at the

 3     final Defence brief in that case for Mr. Krajisnik that we saw language

 4     that we might -- might be familiar to the Chamber in terms of some of the

 5     language that it has seen in the Defence briefs in this case.  All these

 6     high civilian officials who suddenly claim no power, no responsibility.

 7             This is what Mr. Krajisnik said in his final brief in August

 8     2006, paragraph 284:

 9             "Mr. Krajisnik's formal powers as President of the Assembly were

10     extremely limited.  The constitutional and legal structure of the Serb

11     republic were relatively conventional in its essentials:  Leaving aside

12     the issue of the Expanded Presidency (discussed below) there were a

13     legislature and an executive.  Mr. Krajisnik's position as a member and

14     the president of the legislative organ gave him absolutely no executive

15     powers or responsibilities beyond his authority over the workings of the

16     Assembly."

17             As I say, some of that language might seem familiar to some of

18     the language in this case.  Nonetheless, based on his participation in a

19     JCE form 1, Krajisnik was convicted of persecution, extermination,

20     murder, deportation, and forcible transfer, and sentenced to 27 years'

21     imprisonment, reduced to 20 years on appeal.

22             Paragraph 236 of that judgement:

23             On 24 March, the Bosnian Serb Assembly instructed the Ministerial

24     Council to prepare an operational plan for 'assuming power, that is, for

25     establishing power and rendering operational the authorities in the

Page 51896

 1     territory of the Bosnian Serb Republic.

 2              "It was under the accused's direction that the Assembly on 27

 3     March 1992, set up the Bosnian Serb MUP, and then proceeded to approve

 4     the proclamations of 'Newly Established Serbian Municipalities.'"

 5             Some of his contributions to the JCE.

 6             Paragraph 1015 -- excuse me, I'll skip that

 7             In paragraph 1121 of its judgement, the Trial Chamber found that

 8     Krajisnik had contributed to the joint criminal enterprise in the

 9     following ways:

10              "Formulating, initiating, promoting, participating in, and/or

11     encouraging the development and implementation of SDS and Bosnian Serb

12     governmental policies intended to advance the objectives of the joint

13     criminal enterprise.

14             "B:  Participating in the establishment, support, and/or

15     maintenance of SDS and Bosnian Serb government bodies at the republic,

16     regional, municipal, and local levels, including Crisis Staffs,"

17     et cetera, et cetera, "through which he could implement the objectives of

18     the joint criminal enterprise."

19             I would pause next on the accused Sainovic, one of the

20     accused in the Milutinovic case.  And I think I will submit to you that

21     there is a great similarity in Mr. Sainovic's role in that case and

22     Mr. Prlic's role in this case.

23             Mr. Sainovic was a Serb who was the deputy prime minister of the

24     Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and head of the Joint Command.  Now, that

25     sounds like a military body.  He was not a military officer.  He had

Page 51897

 1     nothing -- he had no role in the army or armed forces.  It was a

 2     co-ordination body that included and cut across both civilian bodies and

 3     the military and police, which according to the Milutinovic trial

 4     judgement, paragraph 1007, operated "to inform its members about the

 5     situation, as well as to initiate a certain level of information exchange

 6     and co-ordination."  He was also head of the Commission for the

 7     Federal Republic of Yugoslavia's co-operation with the international

 8     community's Kosovo Verification Mission.  Those were his roles.

 9             Based on his participation in the JCE 1, Sainovic was convicted

10     of persecution, deportation, forcible transfer, and murder, and sentenced

11     to 22 years' imprisonment.

12             Paragraph 331 of the judgement:

13             "Accordingly, the Chamber is of the view that Sainovic ... was an

14     active participant in the Joint Command meetings where he undertook a

15     leading role.  In addition, on his own admission, he reported to

16     Milosevic, Bulatovic, and the Federal Ministry for Foreign

17     Affairs.  ... The various instructions he issued, as outlined above,

18     reveal that he was indeed a political co-ordinator of the activities of

19     the VJ and the MUP in Kosovo in 1998."

20             Your Honours, the Prosecution submits, in this respect,

21     Jadranko Prlic played an essentially similar role in this case and that

22     the words "political co-ordinator" is a pretty fair description.  He was

23     at the middle of the entire HVO -- well, at the middle -- at the top and

24     the middle of the entire HVO apparatus.  He, Jadranko Prlic, was the

25     political government co-ordinator for the entire Herceg-Bosna machinery.

Page 51898

 1     Boban didn't do that.  By all indications - and we'll come to this in a

 2     bit -- a bit -- a bit more in a few minutes - Boban, by all indications

 3     and what this Chamber has seen, wasn't a detail man.  He wasn't a

 4     hands-on manager.  It was the HVO HZ-HB.  It was Prlic's government which

 5     was the hub of the Herceg-Bosna wheel.  It was the Herceg-Bosna

 6     government, Prlic's government, which was the hub of the Herceg-Bosna

 7     wheel, the junction where all roads met, the glue which held it all

 8     together, and Prlic was its boss.  There was no other body and no other

 9     person in Herceg-Bosna which performed that role.  Let me say that again.

10     There was no other body and no other person besides Jadranko Prlic in

11     Herceg-Bosna which performed that role.

12             Paragraph 468 of the Sainovic judgement:














Page 51899

 1             "Pavkovic, as the commander of the 3rd Army of the VJ, was in

 2     command and control of all the VJ forces in Kosovo throughout the period

 3     when the crimes were committed, and issued orders for the operations of

 4     the VJ in Kosovo during this time.  Pavkovic's counterpart with respect

 5     to the MUP was Lukic who, throughout the NATO air campaign, had both

 6     de jure and de facto responsibility over MUP forces that committed crimes

 7     on a massive scale.  Sainovic himself was a political co-ordinator of the

 8     VJ and MUP forces in Kosovo.  All three were involved in the

 9     co-ordination of VJ and MUP activities.  Slobodan Milosevic, another

10     member of the joint criminal enterprise," one might, in this case, read

11     Tudjman, "was both the Supreme Commander of the VJ and had significant

12     de facto powers over the MUP.  For all these reasons, the crimes of both

13     the VJ and the MUP are imputable to Sainovic."

14             Paragraph 463:

15             "... knowledge of the commission of crimes by individuals

16     associated with an accused, combined with continuing participation in

17     joint operations with those individuals, can be conclusive as to an

18     accused's intent."

19             443:

20             "Sainovic was aware of various allegations levelled at the

21     FRY/Serb authorities by the international community.  For example, on

22     23 September 1998, the UN Security Council noted that it was 'gravely

23     concerned' about 'the excessive and indiscriminate use of force by

24     Serbian security forces and the Yugoslav Army,' which, according to the

25     Secretary-General's estimates, had resulted in 'the displacement of over

Page 51900

 1     230.000 persons from their homes.'  As deputy prime minister of the FRY,

 2     Sainovic would have been aware" - would have been aware - "of this

 3     UN Security Council Resolution."

 4             Going to paragraph 465:

 5             "In contrast to his extensive knowledge of crimes in Kosovo,

 6     Sainovic showed little initiative in dealing with the allegations, other

 7     than making a few statements.  This was despite his extensive de facto

 8     and de jure authority within the province, and his close relationship

 9     with Milosevic ...

10              "Taking all the relevant evidence into account, the Chamber

11     concludes the only reasonable inference is that Sainovic had the intent

12     to forcibly displace part of the Kosovo Albanian population, both within

13     and without Kosovo, and thereby change the ethnic balance in the province

14     to ensure continued control by the FRY and Serbian authorities over it."

15             And finally paragraph 470.  And I would relate this to the

16     discussion we had yesterday about foreseeability, all the things that

17     Mr. Miller told us, all the other evidence in the case in this regard:

18             "As described above, Sainovic intended to forcibly displace part

19     of the Kosovo Albanian population and shared this intent with other

20     members of the joint criminal enterprise, the object of which was to

21     force -- forcibly displace Kosovo Albanians within and deport them from

22     Kosovo in order to maintain control over the province.  Sainovic was

23     aware of the strong animosity between ethnic Serbs and Kosovo Albanians

24     in Kosovo during 1998 and 1990 [sic] he was aware of the context of which

25     the forcible displacement took place.  It was thus reasonably foreseeable

Page 51901

 1     that other crimes, including murder, would be committed."

 2             I want to turn for a few minutes more to Mr. Prlic.  As I

 3     understand his final brief, Mr. Prlic's essential position is that, at

 4     least as to all the subjects and events charged in the indictment, he had

 5     no power, no authority, and no responsibility.  Yet in his final brief,

 6     Prlic spends six pages essentially setting out his credentials and giving

 7     us, by all accounts, a rather impressive CV.  In some respects it must be

 8     very difficult and perhaps annoying for Mr. Prlic because, on the one

 9     hand, he's obviously quite proud of his credentials, quite proud of his

10     academic training, quite proud of his -- the very senior and top

11     positions he's held, and yet comes into this court now and says all that

12     is really meaningless.  I didn't have any power.  I didn't have any

13     authority.  I didn't have any responsibility.

14             He says in his brief he is a, quote, "polymath," highly

15     academically trained.  He has been involved in politics since secondary

16     school.  He says he is widely published.  His "brief-as-CV" lists all

17     sorts of top positions he has held including the minister of defence of

18     both the BiH federation and the State of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

19             And I pause there.  For an individual who claims to have nothing

20     to do with military matters and defence and the armed forces, perhaps a

21     bit strange that he was then subsequently put in the position of minister

22     of defence of both the federation and the State of Bosnia and Herzegovina

23     and all sorts of other situations where he has been at the centre of

24     events a principal player, a principal player.

25             The evidence in this case plainly contradicts Prlic's claims of

Page 51902

 1     no power, authority, and in fact, corroborates and is far more consistent

 2     with the Prlic CV stated in his brief.

 3             During the core period of the indictment, from October 1992 to

 4     the end of August 1993, Prlic's HVO HZ-HB was, without question, the

 5     highest, most powerful body in Herceg-Bosna, combining supreme,

 6     executive, legislative, and administrative powers in a wartime government

 7     which established, implemented, and administered Herceg-Bosna law,

 8     policy, and strategy.

 9             During that time period, as we indicate in our brief, the HZ-HB

10     Presidency, the Assembly, the legislative branch, the parliament, if you

11     will, was not meeting, did not meet once between the 17th of October,

12     1992, and the 28th of August, 1993.  During that time, it delegated its

13     entire legislative powers to Prlic's government.

14             As I said a few moments ago, there was no other body, there was

15     no other body and no other individual like Prlic who was at the centre of

16     the power in Herceg-Bosna, who was running the machinery of government on

17     a day-to-day basis.

18             The Defence witness Zoran Buntic, a top HVO official himself, a

19     lawyer, and a regular participant in the HVO HZ-HB meetings confirmed in

20     his sworn testimony that by October 1992, quote, "The HVO HZ-HB was the

21     highest executive and controlling body.  That is beyond dispute."

22             That is from a Defence witness who was an insider to the HVO

23             As President and then prime minister, Prlic was the master of and

24     responsible for, quote, "the highest executive and controlling body."

25     Herceg-Bosna's amended statutory decision on the temporary decision

Page 51903

 1     organisation of executive authority also expressly provided in Article 9:

 2             "The HVO HZ-HB President," that is Mr. Prlic, "shall be in charge

 3     of the work of the HVO HZ-HB and shall be held accountable for it.  He

 4     shall ensure the unity of the political and administrative activities of

 5     the HVO HZ-HB, co-operate with other bodies and organisations of the

 6     HZ-HB, and direct the activities of the HVO HZ-HB as a whole and its

 7     members as individuals."

 8             That's in Exhibit P00303, Article 9.

 9             Buntic confirmed that this Article, the one that I just read to

10     you, that this article establishes Prlic's individual responsibility for

11     conducting the government.

12             As we looked at yesterday, Praljak confirmed the central

13     political control of the HVO military, quote, again he said:

14             "A political decision has an absolute priority over a military

15     decision.  You cannot conduct the creation of a state from 20 centres but

16     from one..."

17             Petkovic confirmed as we looked at yesterday that the three

18     highest political or civilian authorities concerning Herceg-Bosna's

19     military and defence matters were Boban, Prlic, and Stojic.

20             In a 22 April 1993 interview which described Prlic as one of the

21     "politically best trained Croat politicians," Prlic said that the HVO was

22     "ready to defend the Croat nation and Croat territory in BH regardless of

23     who our enemies are, to defend their national territory and their state."

24             Making reference to "our territories," Prlic said that:

25             "To expect BH to function as a unitary independent state was

Page 51904

 1     unrealistic."

 2             And that:

 3             "If two nations do not agree to some state and they are

 4     constituent nations, then that state cannot even be discussed."  P02021.

 5             Defence witnesses Neven Tomic and Zoran Perkovic confirmed that

 6     Prlic fully executed his responsibilities in directing the work of the

 7     Herceg-Bosna HVO government, whether in the form of the community or the

 8     republic, and that Prlic was instrumental in shaping its work.  The HVO

 9     finance man Rupcic testified that Prlic was superior to both the Defence

10     witness Neven Tomic who was head of the HVO finance department and the

11     accused Stojic as head of the Defence Department.

12             It was abundantly clear to all of the international observers,

13     including Witness DZ, that Boban and Prlic were the decision-makers and

14     nothing could be done in Herceg-Bosna without them.  The ECMM official

15     Christopher Beese identified Boban as the senior figure and Prlic as the

16     next most senior Herceg-Bosna HVO official, with everyone except Boban

17     subordinate to Prlic.  Another knowledgeable ECMM official, Ray Lane

18     testified that the Herceg-Bosna HVO hierarchy appeared to be Boban at the

19     top, then Prlic, Stojic, Petkovic, and Coric.  Witness BF, I'm not

20     identifying him or quoting him or giving anything that would identify who

21     the witness was, stated that Prlic as head of the HVO government had

22     authority over all HVO departments, including the Defence Department.

23     Beese testified that Prlic, quote, "appeared to know all things and

24     appeared to be able to give direction on all matters whether civilian or

25     military."


Page 51905

 1             If we could go into private session just for a moment,

 2     Mr. President.

 3             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just a minute.  Let me consult

 4     with my fellow Judges.

 5                           [Trial Chamber confers]

 6             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Scott, normally it's --

 7     it's a public argument, so why do you want to move to private session?

 8     Is it for protected witnesses?

 9             MR. SCOTT:  Yes, Your Honour.  There is a part of the testimony

10     that was given by a witness on this topic that was in private session,

11     and it is -- struck the Prosecution as more of the type that might

12     arguably be more identifying of the witness, but I'm in the Chamber's

13     hands.  It was given in private session.

14             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  Let's move to

15     private session.

16             Mr. Registrar.

17             [Private session] [Confidentiality lifted by order of the Chamber]

18             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, we're in private session.

19             MR. SCOTT:  Thank you, Mr. President.  Out of an abundance of

20     caution, it may be that the Chamber will decide it wasn't necessary, but

21     I would rather err on the side of caution in these situations.

22             Mr. Lane, although he gave most of his testimony in public

23     session, for whatever reason there were some limited parts that were in

24     private session.

25             Mr. Lane said -- gave the evidence that in truth, Prlic was one

Page 51906

 1     of the key, most powerful Herceg-Bosna HVO actors together with Tudjman,

 2     Susak, and Boban.  Also according to Witness BH, another protected

 3     witness, Prlic in fact was the real operational leader.  Jadranko Prlic

 4     was the boss.  I'm quoting now.  "Jadranko Prlic was the boss, the chief.

 5     He directed the entire, the entire, military structure of

 6     Herceg-Bosna ...  Everything pointed to the fact that he was the real

 7     boss."

 8             Witness BF testified that Prlic was very proud of how

 9     well-organised the HVO was, and Beese who met with Prlic on numerous

10     occasions could not recall a single instance when Prlic did not seem in

11     full control of the situation.

12             With that, Your Honour, we go back into open session.

13             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  Mr. Registrar.

14                           [Open session]

15             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, we're back in open session.  Thank

16     you.

17             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Continue, please.

18             MR. SCOTT:  On the 30th September 1993, the Croatian Defence

19     Minister Susak told Tudjman that he had instructed Boban -- and notice

20     again this sequence of events.  Susak told Tudjman that he, Susak, had

21     instructed Boban to nominate a prime minister and that Prlic would be put

22     forward.

23             On 10 November 1993, Boban formally confirmed Prlic's selection,

24     and his selection was unanimous.  It is especially noteworthy that

25     Tudjman, Susak, and Boban gave their full and unanimous endorsement to


Page 51907

 1     Prlic in November 1993 after all of the events, after all the

 2     developments, after all the crimes, after all the tragedies that had

 3     occurred since August of 1992, when it came time for those power brokers,

 4     Tudjman, Susak, Boban to select who should be the new prime minister,

 5     they unanimously chose Jadranko Prlic without dissent.

 6             The Chamber heard yesterday that, for the most part, moderates in

 7     those circles had a short lifespan.  Stjepan Kljujic was forced out and

 8     gone.  Jure Pelivan, the moderate prime minister Croat, forced out and

 9     gone.  Miljenko Brkic, the moderate head of the HDZ party, forced out and

10     gone.  But not Prlic.  Not Prlic.  Endorsed by the highest possible -- in

11     the highest possible circle.  Prlic not only remained but constantly

12     increased his power, going from power to power.  He was very clearly part

13     of Tudjman's trusted inner circle.

14             On 20 June 1998, Prlic met alone with Tudjman.  They were looking

15     back over the previous few years, like probably many of us would.  They

16     had talked a number of times before, and Prlic spoke about mistakes that

17     had been made, Prlic and Tudjman, perhaps mistakes had been made and

18     problems that he and other Croats were having with the federation at the

19     time.  And when Tudjman accused him, Prlic, of not taking the right

20     decision or approach, Prlic responded:

21             "I do not belong to any line.  I have been implementing what you

22     were telling me all the time.  I have been implementing what you were

23     telling me," you Tudjman, "were telling me all the time."

24             To which Tudjman replied:

25             "Well, it is for sure that you are the most intelligent one

Page 51908

 1     within that structure."

 2             Perhaps for obvious reasons, but Prlic has done himself a

 3     disservice in understating and denying his significant credentials, his

 4     intelligence, and his obvious talents.  It's simply not true that he was

 5     a powerless spectator watching Herceg-Bosna and the war unfold with no

 6     role, no power, and no involvement.  He was at that time clearly either

 7     number one or, if not number one, number two, the most powerful man in

 8     Herceg-Bosna.

 9             Some thoughts on Bruno Stojic.  A few documents will introduce us

10     or remind us of Mr. Stojic's role in the case.  The fact that Bruno

11     Stojic was having essentially the same "Graz" conversation with senior

12     Bosnian Serbs on 5 May 1992, the day -- the very day before Boban's

13     meeting with Karadzic in Graz on the 6th of May, the fact that they were

14     having essentially the same conversation cannot have been a coincidence

15     and demonstrates that the Herceg-Bosna goals were widely known and shared

16     among its leadership.  The conversation involved Bruno Stojic and Branko

17     Kvesic on the Bosnian Croat side, and Momcilo Mandic and Mico Stanisic,

18     who is on trial at the Tribunal also, on the Bosnian Serb side.

19             By 15 May 1992, Kvesic was chief of the HVO's department of

20     interior and he remained in that position until late 1993.

21             In May 1992, Mandic, Momcilo Mandic was the Republika Srpska

22     minister of justice and Mico Stanisic was Kvesic's Serb counterpart as

23     chief of the RS Ministry of the Interior.

24             In the conversation of 5 May, Stojic made it clear that the

25     Herceg-Bosna wanted the Banovina borders and "none other."

Page 51909

 1             "Stanisic:  Listen, Karadzic, too, wants a deal."

 2             And remember, this is the day before Graz.  This is the day

 3     before Graz.

 4             "Listen, Karadzic, too, wants a deal.  To sit down and work out a

 5     deal.  But once it gets started it keeps going.

 6              "Stojic:  Stop it already, what's wrong with you.

 7              "Stanisic:  Well, let us, you give some initiative to have

 8     somewhere...

 9             "Stojic:  Both you and us.  This makes no sense.

10             "Stanisic:  We'll give you all this over here, Visoko, Vares,

11     Kakanj, and Zenica.  We'll give them to you.

12             "Stojic:  You can't give us what's ours.  That is the Banovina of

13     1939.

14             "Stojic:  We have to work out a deal as soon as possible.  This

15     has no ...

16             "Stanisic:  Bruno, you know we've always been prepared to talk

17     with you.  Be fair.  But they got embroiled in this.  Fuck it.  When a

18     religious sect wants to have a state, that is the worst.

19             "Stojic:  We only want our own state, man.

20             "Stanisic:  Huh, you and us, and what about this third side.

21             "Stanisic:  Let's get it started and you give up some, we give up

22     some, so we can mark those natural borders and that's it.

23             "Stojic:  What natural ones?

24             "Stanisic:  Well, these ...

25             "Stojic:  This is the 1939 one and none other.  I'm dead serious.

Page 51910

 1             "Stanisic:  We need to see what is realistic there and sit down

 2     and make a deal.

 3             "Stojic:  Only the 1939 borders and no bargaining.  Ha, ha."

 4             It goes on.

 5             "Mandic:  Listen.  And let's ... let's make a deal as Mico said,

 6     not to let people die.  There's no need.

 7             "Branko:  No need.

 8             "Mandic:  You have your own state, we have ours, and the Muslims

 9     should go and look for their own, fuck them.

10             "Branko:  Well said.

11             "Mandic:  It's a deal."

12             That speaks volumes about where these people were at the time and

13     what their attitude was.

14             Now, in his final brief, Mr. Stojic tries to attempt -- he

15     attempts to dismiss this conversation as -- as meaningless banter with

16     friends, but the Prosecution submits to you, Your Honours, isn't it often

17     when you are talking with friends, you think privately, when you are most

18     likely to say what you really think?

19             There's another sampling of a few documents that also cannot be

20     discussed as banter.  A report on the 14th of June, 1993, P02770, going

21     to Bruno and Petkovic and Keza.  I believe that's Zarko Keza.

22              "Around 90 Muslims were evicted yesterday from the settlement

23     DUM, Petra Drapsina Street.  Apart from forcible moves into apartments,

24     few women were raped in front of eye-witnesses.  Some women were taken in

25     unknown direction, and many people were beaten up and maltreated.  There

Page 51911

 1     are indications of new murders of civilians on which we will inform you.

 2     The perpetrators of these latest crimes are mainly members of the

 3     4th Battalion, Vinko Martinovic - Stela, Bobo Peric, Damir Peric, Ernest

 4     Takac, and Nino Pehar - Ziga."

 5             90 Muslims evicted yesterday.  A few women were raped in front of

 6     eye-witnesses.

 7             P03181.  A 5 July 1993 report to Mr. Bruno Stojic personally.

 8             "Subject:  Families of Members of Balija units.

 9             "We are sending you enclosed the list of families from the Zahum

10     local commune whose members are in Balija units.

11             "List."  And then there's a list of seven names.

12             "Remark:

13             "Kavazbasina Street has not been cleansed of Balijas.

14             Number 2:

15             "At M. Gupca Street, number 109, Balijas are hiding in a garage

16     and the shelter next to the supermarket.  At the sign of knocking.  Raid

17     in the evening."

18             P04352, 20 August 1993 report from Stanko Bozic, the warden of

19     the Heliodrom, to Bruno Stojic:

20              "On 11 August 1993, the Red Cross started work on registering

21     all the detainees and the following two days they took messages.  When

22     they finished their work in the prison, a representative of the

23     delegation, Mr. Franco Faro and I as the prison warden had a

24     conversation.  Mr. Franco pointed out the following wrong-doings in

25     violation of the Geneva Conventions:

Page 51912

 1             "1.  Sending detainees to work;

 2             "2.  The quality and quantity of food, they request its

 3     improvement; and

 4             3.  Bad conditions in solitary cells.

 5             "Regarding the violations of the Geneva Conventions, Mr. Franco

 6     warned and obligated me as the warden to make sure that these

 7     wrong-doings are not repeated in the future or we would be reported to

 8     the International Tribunal."

 9             Well, I guess they were.

10             "After the Red Cross's departure we were not able to remedy these

11     wrong-doings.  On the contrary, the number of wounded and killed at the

12     workplace is increasing by the day."

13             Now, Mr. Stojic tries to shift much of his responsibilities to

14     Mr. Boban, saying that a number of powers and functions he didn't really

15     have, but in reality, the Prosecution position is, Your Honours, we

16     submit that the powers and functions that Boban didn't exercise himself

17     as supreme commander were largely delegated to Stojic, either expressly,

18     implicitly, or even by default, and that is fully consistent with both

19     the de jure language and the Herceg-Bosna legislation and in the de facto

20     evidence.

21             Davor Marijan was an expert witness called by the Stojic Defence.

22     When asked during cross-examination to whom Boban delegated -- and

23     perhaps I should pause for a moment and set this up a bit more fully, the

24     reason it came up is because, and we'll get to it, perhaps, in a moment,

25     is that by this point Davor Marijan had said, well, you know, I was

Page 51913

 1     looking through all this documentation, all the contemporaneous record,

 2     and I just couldn't find any record that Boban was actually exercising

 3     these functions.  There's just no paper trail.  There's nothing about

 4     Boban running the military.  I couldn't find anything.  Well, if he

 5     wasn't doing it, well, who did?  And there is a provision under the

 6     Herceg-Bosna Statute, under the amended decree on armed forces Article

 7     30, that's P00588, which provides:

 8             "The Supreme Commander of the armed forces may delegate certain

 9     task of leading and commanding the armed forces to the head of the

10     Defence Department," Mr. Stojic.

11             So going back to Mr. Marijan, when he was asked during

12     cross-examination to whom Boban delegated or would have delegated this

13     power or function as supreme commander of the HVO military, it was

14     perhaps no surprise as a Stojic Defence witness that Mr. Marijan did not

15     put these responsibilities on Stojic but instead placed them on the

16     accused Petkovic.  Marijan had no real basis for selecting Petkovic over

17     Stojic, and he was specifically asked well why do you say that?  Well, I

18     couldn't find any written decision from Boban delegating his power to

19     Stojic.  Well, the problem with that explanation is exactly the same

20     thing could be said as to Petkovic.  But the legislation and the de facto

21     evidence suggests that it was to Stojic that these powers were actually

22     delegated.

23             The decree itself, the amended decree on armed forces is likewise

24     an indication of a collective legislative judgement that head of the

25     Defence Department was the most logical political or civilian official to

Page 51914

 1     be in charge of the HVO armed forces in the event that Boban for some

 2     reason or whatever reason was not fulfilling that role.

 3             Mr. President, perhaps that would be a time to stop.

 4             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  Let's have our

 5     20-minute break.

 6                           --- Recess taken at 10.28 a.m.

 7                           --- On resuming at 10.53 a.m.

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

 9     The Trial Chamber will now issue an oral decision as far as the

10     transcript is concerned.  Page 31, line 8 to 25.  We have looked at the

11     transcript.  We noted that the name of protected witness was not such

12     that they could be identify.  The Trial Chamber then has decided to lift

13     the confidentiality of these and make page line 8 to 25 of page 31

14     public.

15             Mr. Scott, you may continue.

16             MR. SCOTT:  Thank you, Mr. President.  I certainly have no

17     objection to that.  It wouldn't matter if I did, but I have no objection

18     to that.  But the Chamber, of course we're trying to be -- exercise

19     caution in some instances and so I appreciate and don't disagree with the

20     Chamber's ruling.

21             We had stopped -- we were talking about the delegation of

22     Mr. Boban's authority to Mr. Stojic, and we were talking primarily before

23     the break about -- at the de jure analysis based on the amended decree on

24     armed forces, but in addition to that, the de facto evidence or the real

25     world, if you will, how things really worked, that evidence also supports

Page 51915

 1     that it was to Mr. Stojic, who at least primarily, received these

 2     delegated responsibilities.

 3             Christopher Beese from ECMM said:

 4             "Bruno Stojic was senior in the military hierarchy, commanding

 5     military forces through generals."

 6             Witness DZ, and in light of what we were just talking, I don't

 7     believe this will give any identifying information as to the witness:

 8             "Bruno Stojic was focused on military action and delivering to

 9     Boban and Prlic what they wanted, and this was Mostar on its knees.

10     Stojic was effectively the minister of defence and always accompanied by

11     soldiers.  He had good grip on military issues and people on the field.

12     He was the bridge between Petkovic, the other military representatives of

13     Zagreb, and the military actors on the field who were local men.  Because

14     he was a local man, Stojic had the respect of the local soldiers."

15             And that can be found at P10367.

16             Witness BH said:

17             "Bruno Stojic was a man of authority and a boss who was in charge

18     of military affairs and the operational side of military and defence

19     issues."

20             There's extensive documentary evidence of Stojic's direct

21     military role and involvement, a sampling of which is set out in the

22     annex to the Prosecution's final brief which includes Stojic's orders to

23     HVO commanders in the field, mobilisation orders, Stojic's direct

24     involvement in and orders concerning military operations, reports from

25     the field keeping Stojic closely informed of developments, and Stojic

Page 51916

 1     providing material and logistical support to forces in the field.

 2             All of this evidence corroborates and in turn is corroborated by

 3     the role that Stojic can be seen playing in Mostar on the 10th of May

 4     1993 in a BBC news clip showing the HVO, quote "defence minister leading

 5     the Croat forces in Mostar."  We will play that for a moment, which is

 6     P04238.

 7                           [Video-clip played]

 8             "Reporter:  A quiet day in Mostar.  A former Muslim sniper

 9     position on fire.  Sporadic machine-gun and mortar exchanges.  The

10     cease-fire has still not taken hold.  It is the end of a dreadful week.

11             "The Croatian forces led by defence minister Bruno Stojic put

12     their wounded in Mostar at 150.  Muslim casualties are certainly much

13     higher.  The total dead in the city could be as high as 500.  There are

14     at least 200 Croats missing further north, and this may be just the start

15     of it.

16              "Over a map of the pitched battles, the minister says his forces

17     could clear their half of the city in five hours, and he charges the

18     Muslim commander with not wanting a cease-fire.

19             THE INTERPRETER:  [Voiceover] "On the one hand he is buying time.

20             "Interpreter:  But this is one very bloody, very heavy war, and

21     nothing can come as a surprise.

22              "Reporter:  The recent conflicts are in the area supposedly

23     controlled by Spanish UN troops who have suffered their first fatal

24     casualty and are daily under fire in Mostar.  Now each side is accusing

25     the other of planning the next offensive in the British area.

Page 51917

 1             "This is Central Bosnia where the Croats have produced 11 alleged

 2     Mujahadin, Islamic fighters from the Middle East and Bangladesh.  They

 3     said they were aid workers, the Croats said they were arms smugglers and

 4     three of them were taken into combat.  Martin Bell, BBC News, Mostar."

 5             As I watch that, and I would just note for the Chamber's

 6     consideration, compare the conditions in the hospital that you just saw

 7     with the HVO soldiers with the conditions that you're familiar with in

 8     terms of the East Mostar war hospital and the various video-clips that

 9     you've seen of that.  It's a rather stark contrast, I must say.

10             There is also the topic that Mr. Stojic's final brief about the

11     appointment of senior HVO officers, Mr. Stojic again saying that, well,

12     that was really Boban's responsibility, and indicating, of course, that

13     he did not play a significant role in that, that he, quote, "played a

14     purely administrative role regarding the appointment procedure."

15             While the Prosecution has never disputed the de jure decrees and

16     Herceg-Bosna legislation describing the president of Herceg-Bosna, that

17     is the position held by Mate Boban, as the supreme commander, that does

18     not take away from Stojic having major responsibilities in regard to

19     defence and military matters.

20             As to the appointment of top HVO officers, the de jure and de

21     facto evidence plainly indicates that Boban's appointments in this regard

22     were largely based on proposals put forward by the head of the Defence

23     Department and the head of the HVO Main Staff.  In the usual course of

24     business, the head of the -- the head of the Main Staff would propose an

25     appointment to the head of the Defence Department.  The head of the Main

Page 51918

 1     Staff being, depending on the time, either Mr. Petkovic or Mr. Praljak,

 2     and the head of the Defence Department for virtually all the time

 3     relevant to the indictment being Mr. Stojic.

 4             If the head of the Defence Department approved, it would then be

 5     sent to Boban for final action.  This can be seen or is outlined in the

 6     20 May 1993 decision on the internal organisation of the Defence

 7     Department, which is Exhibit P02477, Article 3(B).

 8             The Defence expert Marijan confirmed this:

 9             "In chief you greed that these were all high-level positions and

10     that's why they had to be approved by Mr. Boban, but isn't it true that

11     these positions also needed approval from the head of the Defence

12     Department?

13             "A. That is correct.  From this," and being a reference to

14     P02477, "... from this we can see that he gave his approval to these

15     posts."

16             The process plainly indicates the significant role played by both

17     Stojic and Petkovic and/or Praljak in this process.

18             Before leaving that topic, I just leave for the Chamber's

19     consideration giving -- given Mr. Stojic's role in the appointment of

20     senior HVO officers and commanders, one wonders why he did not approve --

21     why he did not approve what he -- why he did not disapprove, perhaps, the

22     proposal to appoint and promote Ivica Rajic to colonel just days after

23     Stupni Do.

24             Beyond or in addition to Stojic's important role and the

25     appointment of the top, the very top HVO commanders, he also had the

Page 51919

 1     power to appoint and dismiss military personnel up to at least the level

 2     of deputy brigade commander, which included important command positions

 3     in the Main Staff and in the HVO operative zones.  This power itself,

 4     even putting aside the very top commanders, where the evidence is clear

 5     that he did play a significant role, but even as to the deputy brigade

 6     commanders, these were people, as we all know in an army or in most

 7     organisations, these are the people that actually made things happen on

 8     the ground on a day-to-day basis, the lower-level commanders, the

 9     mid-level commanders.

10             Mr. Stojic had direct responsibility for them.  He could appoint

11     them.  He could relieve them.  It could have been a powerful tool for

12     Mr. Stojic to control the behaviour of the HVO.

13             There's a troublesome deputy brigade commander out there.

14     There's a troublesome commander in the HVO Main Staff at the staff level.

15     This person's causing trouble.  They're out there causing crimes.

16     They're out there burning Muslim houses.  You're out of here.  You are

17     dismissed.  A powerful force to use if Mr. Stojic chose to do so.

18             Stojic and the Defence Department collegium.  The Chamber will

19     recall that there was a body within the Defence Department called the

20     collegium which was composed of both the various subdepartment heads,

21     subsections, if you will, of the Department of Defence, together with

22     various of the military commanders.  The Stojic Defence brief attempts

23     again to minimise Stojic's role in this body, but in fact the collegium

24     was a significant working group which met regularly and included not only

25     the various heads of the subdepartments and other DOD administrative

Page 51920

 1     units but also, and importantly, the chief the Main Staff and the head of

 2     the HVO Military Police Administration, Mr. Coric.  The group functioned,

 3     inter alia, to advise Stojic on various defence and military matters.

 4             It is clear that Stojic attached importance to these meetings,

 5     telling General Praljak on one occasion that he was expected to attend

 6     every meeting personally when at least on one occasion Mr. Praljak had

 7     seen fit to send a deputy instead.  That's displayed or seen in Exhibit

 8     P04646 and P04756.

 9             Mr. Stojic as defence minister was not amused that Mr. Praljak

10     had not attended personally and issues an order to the effect

11     Mr. Praljak, in the future you will attend these meetings personally.

12             On mobilisation, the Stojic final brief again emphasised that

13     that was primarily Boban's role; in fact, that it was exclusively Boban's

14     role.  That is entirely wrong.  Stojic's own expert witness again

15     Davor Marijan confirmed that the task of carrying out mobilisation fell

16     directly within Stojic's job description.

17             Davor Marijan at transcript 35902:

18             "I believe that Mr. Stojic is the addressee with respect to the

19     last element, and that is mobilisation, because carrying out mobilisation

20     falls within the job description of Mr. Stojic."

21             Transcript 35887, Marijan again, it's in reference to the joint

22     proclamation by Mr. Prlic and Mr. Stojic on the 30th of June, 1993.

23     Marijan says, well, I don't know.  I've never researched the role of the

24     president in that.  But as to Mr. Stojic, he says:

25             "He did have responsibilities regarding mobilisation.  He was

Page 51921

 1     carrying out mobilisation."

 2             In fact, the evidence shows that Stojic was the principal

 3     responsible person for the mobilisation of Bosnian Croat soldiers.  All

 4     HVO mobilisation orders issued in 1993 were signed or co-signed by

 5     Bruno Stojic without any involvement of Boban.

 6             Now, taking more generally various of his administrative and

 7     logistical responsibilities as head of the Defence Department, the Stojic

 8     Defence essentially dismisses Stojic's role in important administrative,

 9     financial, and logistical matters as both legally and factually

10     insignificant.  Quote in the brief:

11             "Regarding the military operations, his purely administrative and

12     logistical role cannot be considered as having a substantial effect on

13     the commission of crimes," paragraph 244.

14             The Prosecution wants to make it clear both as to Mr. Stojic and

15     to all six of the accused that we reject out of hand the premise that

16     such powers and involvements, such administrative things and

17     responsibilities and powers in such things as finances, administration,

18     logistics, procurement of weapons, that those things are insignificant.

19     Involvement in administrative, financial, and logistical matters can and

20     do -- or can and does easily rise to the level of making significant

21     contributions to a joint criminal enterprise and other modes of

22     liability.  And in reference to some of the examples I was citing earlier

23     this morning from some of the other cases, the ICTY case law makes it

24     plain that a number of cases, such as some of the ones that I cited this

25     morning, involvement in administrative financial and logistical roles

Page 51922

 1     that give support to the joint criminal enterprise are clearly sufficient

 2     to amount to, quote, "significant contribution to the joint criminal

 3     enterprise."

 4             In fact, on the -- on the significance of those functions,

 5     dealing with manpower, dealing with food, dealing with equipment, dealing

 6     with health care of soldiers, dealing with finances, all of those again

 7     provide ample tools to control and influence the army's behaviour.

 8             As General Eisenhower once said, and he was quoted by Marijan:

 9             "You will not find it difficult to prove that battles, campaigns,

10     and even wars have been won or lost primarily because of logistics."

11             Indeed, Stojic's involvement in weapons procurement and logistics

12     is one of his claims to fame dating back to 1991, long before he was

13     appointed head of the Defence Department.  Stojic was a member of the

14     HDZ-BiH Crisis Staff established in September 1991.  That can be seen in

15     Exhibit P00058, and was clearly involved in the acquisition of weapons

16     and other equipment and material leading, in fact, to Croatian Army

17     General Bobetko putting him in charge of logistics at the Grude forward

18     command of the Croatian Army in April/May 1992.  The Chamber may recall,

19     and I hope it will, it will have a chance to look back on, at the very

20     beginning when Bobetko was sent down by Zagreb to, quote, "the southern

21     front," and established an advanced forward command post of the

22     Croatian Army in Bosnia on the -- around the 14th of April, 1992, he

23     named about 11 people to this -- what became the core HVO staff.  Two of

24     those persons were Mr. Petkovic, who was then put in charge in Bobetko's

25     absence, and Mr. Stojic in charge of logistics.

Page 51923

 1             At a meeting with Tudjman on 10 March 1992, Boban praised Stojic

 2     as a devoted man who had obtained 150 new Golf type of Volkswagen, new

 3     Golf cars for Herceg-Bosna, "not to mention the weapons."  That's at

 4     P00134.

 5             All of these, in fact, were part of the very credentials and the

 6     very reason that he was then appointed head of the Defence Department.

 7             By the time that Stojic was named head of the HVO Department of

 8     Defence on 3 July 1992, Stojic was the access, the access around which

 9     everything concerning HVO arms, ammunition, and military equipment

10     revolved.  The evidence set out in the final Prosecution brief,

11     paragraphs 552 to 560, show that Stojic as head of the Defence Department

12     had full control and direct involvement with HVO's manpower, that is

13     mobilisation, et cetera, including arms and ammunition, and finances,

14     including funding requests to the Croatian Ministry of Defence.  The

15     Chamber will recall and will have the opportunity to review numerous

16     communications and requests for funding sent and signed by Mr. Stojic to

17     Gojko Susak requesting funding from the Croatian Ministry of Defence for

18     the HVO.

19             Again, Stojic's own expert witness Davor Marijan confirmed that

20     there was no doubt that the chief of the HVO Main Staff reported to and

21     dealt with the head of the Department of Defence, Bruno Stojic, when it

22     came to the HVO's arms, ammunition, fuel, et cetera.  Marijan also stated

23     in his expert report that "Commanders of the HVO brigades and other

24     officers often appealed directly to the head of DOD in the matter of

25     supply and manpower."  That's at 2D -- that's in his report, 2D02000,

Page 51924

 1     paragraph 86.

 2             Coming to the topic of the HVO prisons and camps.  There is

 3     virtually overwhelming evidence both de jure and de facto that

 4     Bruno Stojic had major responsibility for the HVO military prisons and

 5     detention camps.  His efforts to duck this responsibility both in 1993

 6     and now cannot, with respect, be taken seriously.

 7             After the massed detention of the Muslim civilians in Mostar on 9

 8     and 10 May, 1993, most of the women, children, and elderly were released

 9     after about ten days of detention, but the captured Muslim men were not.

10     When the ECMM officer van der Grinten confronted Stojic a few weeks later

11     with the continuing unlawful detention of the Muslim men, Stojic

12     responded that, quote, "the 504 prisoners in the Heliodrom are till now

13     still not accused but under investigation."  P02806.  And transcript

14     21049.

15             During the HVO mass arrest of the Muslim men of military age in

16     early July 1993, Stojic on 4 July 1993 ordered Capljina and Stolac

17     municipalities, quote, "to immediately assume obligations of custody,

18     accommodation, et cetera, regarding the arrested members of the MOS fit

19     for military service."  That is 4D00461.

20             Among other evidence, the documentary and testimonial evidence

21     involving the Heliodrom warden and deputy warden, Stanko Bozic and Josic

22     Praljak, respectively, overwhelmingly demonstrates that these top HVO

23     prison officials fully understood that Stojic was in charge, and they

24     raised their concerns with him and put him on notice repeatedly.

25             In the interests of time I'm not going to go through all of those

Page 51925

 1     communications and letters.  They're all either identified in the

 2     Prosecution's final brief or will be readily apparent to the Chamber in

 3     its review of the evidence.  They've been discussed many times.

 4             On that evidence, Mr. Stojic attempts to avoid it by attacking

 5     its authenticity, that there's no stamp that says that it actually came

 6     into his personal office.  The Prosecution firmly disagrees.  These

 7     documents were most likely collected from the Heliodrom archives and

 8     would therefore not bear any receipt stamp of the HVO Defence Department,

 9     yet documents and records at each end, the file copy and the one that is

10     sent to the recipient, all of the documents contain a Heliodrom file

11     number whose numbers logically follow the chronology in which these

12     communications were issued by the Heliodrom wardens.

13             Further, at least three out of the five specific letters shown to

14     Josip Praljak at trial and their content were specifically authenticated

15     by the witness Josip Praljak, P03209, P04352, and P06170.

16             As to P06170, Josip Praljak testified that he personally handed

17     this report to the secretary for Mr. Stojic.  That's at transcript 14801.

18             Except for one of the documents which is P05812, all the reports

19     are signed.  They all bear an official HVO stamp.  All the documents were

20     collected from the Croatian State Archive, and all bear a stamp from the

21     archive.

22             Mr. Stojic next points to the establishment of the Pusic

23     Commission in August 1993 as somehow proof -- I'm not really exactly sure

24     what -- I guess at this point, he said, well, I did try to do something

25     good.  I submit to the Chamber this is one of those instances, and we see

Page 51926

 1     it with several of the accused, where on the one hand they said I didn't

 2     have any power, I didn't have any responsibility, but on other occasions,

 3     well, I did have the power to do something good.  It's kind of like power

 4     being a kind of one-way street mechanism.  I could good but I couldn't do

 5     bad.  I could appoint the Pusic Commission to try to resolve these

 6     problems but I really didn't have any power or responsibility.

 7             Nonetheless, it was Stojic who appointed and established the

 8     Pusic Commission led by the accused Pusic to control the functioning of

 9     all HVO remand facilities and prisons, including Ljubuski, and that can

10     be seen at P03995 and P04002.

11             The Stojic Defence does not deny that Bruno Stojic ordered the

12     formation of this commission, and as I've just mentioned a moment ago, in

13     fact, the Stojic Defence claims that his having set this up should

14     somehow work to his credit.  Reality is it shows that, indeed, he had the

15     power to do something if he wanted to.

16             The Defence brief asserts that because the commission members

17     allegedly never implemented their task, it shows -- somehow shows

18     Stojic's lack of authority over prison matters.  Not correct.  First, the

19     fact that Stojic could and did order the formation of this commission

20     plainly indicates that he did have power to act, as we've just been

21     discussing.  And further, it is not true that the establishment of this

22     commission did not serve its purpose.  For its appointed president,

23     Berislav Pusic, this function expanded his own role with respect to

24     prisoners and further confirmed his key place in the JCE 2 and JCE 1

25     involving the camps and the deportation of Muslims from the camps.  Those

Page 51927

 1     may be functions which Mr. Stojic is not anxious to embrace, but he

 2     cannot pretend that they didn't exist.

 3             In direct reference to Stojic's order establishing the

 4     commission, Pusic confirmed his de jure responsibilities over the HVO

 5     prisoners and over the HVO personnel who held them, implementing Stojic's

 6     directive to assemble information about the detainees, the conditions and

 7     circumstances of their confinement, and their classification and

 8     potential release.  You can see that as P04141.

 9             Mr. Stojic next turns to say, well, it was actually the military

10     Judges who were responsible for the prisoners held at the HVO facilities.

11     That may be true, at least to the extent of only those soldiers who were

12     specifically being held on the order of an HVO military judge.  The

13     Prosecution submits that those were pretty few and far between.  These

14     are not the prisoners of war.  These are not the detained Muslim men, for

15     the most part, that we're talking about.  So even taking as -- even

16     taking arguendo that that may be true, the fact that a military judge may

17     have had some responsibility as some few of the detainees in HVO prisons

18     and facilities does not let Mr. Stojic off the hook.

19             In fact, one of the issues in this case concerning the detained

20     individuals was a lack of classification.  People didn't know and the HVO

21     didn't know.  Are they civilians?  Are they prisoners of war?  Are they

22     detained HVO members?  Why are they being held?  What categories are they

23     in?  How are they classified?  That was indeed one of the very core

24     problems that directly relates to this particular issue.

25             What is perhaps most important about the military judge situation

Page 51928

 1     in which the report from the military judge, which Stojic cites as

 2     P06520, is that it indicates as to who was responsible for the operation

 3     of the Ljubuski prison because who does this military judge send his

 4     report to?  Three people:  The head of the government, Mr. Prlic; the

 5     head of the Defence Department, Mr. Stojic; and the head of Military

 6     Police Administration, Mr. Coric.  That's who that military judge thought

 7     was responsible.

 8             Stojic and the military police.  The Prosecution persists in its

 9     position that Stojic had substantial responsibility for the HVO military

10     police as set out in our final brief.  In his final brief, Stojic does

11     not seem to seriously contest this connection, but again dismisses what

12     he claims were, quote, "only administrative and logistical

13     responsibilities."

14             While the Prosecution submits that Stojic's role and involvements

15     concerning the military police was, in fact, much more than he let's on,

16     we nonetheless reject again any notion or any premise that, quote, "mere

17     or only administrative responsibilities or functions is somehow

18     insufficient for purposes of criminal liability or contribution to a

19     joint criminal enterprise."

20             As to humanitarian aid, finally in about -- excuse me, in the

21     connection of blocking or manipulation of humanitarian aid, the Stojic

22     position on this seems to be another instance where the accused claims

23     the power only to do good but no power to do ill.  While he claims to

24     have no role or responsibility bearing on the movement, distribution, or

25     receipt of humanitarian aid, he nonetheless seeks credit for giving

Page 51929

 1     permission or arranging for medical supplies to reach the East Mostar war

 2     hospital.

 3             Excuse me one moment, Your Honours.  My apologies.

 4             I want to turn, last two topics for me, and one is the pointing

 5     the finger, if you will, at other persons or other institutions in terms

 6     of, if I can call it, blame shifting.  It wasn't me.  I didn't have

 7     power.  I didn't have responsibility.  I didn't have authority.  It was

 8     someone else.

 9             Various of the accused point the finger at someone or something

10     else as the person or institution with the, quote, "real power" or the

11     person or institution that was really responsible or really to blame.

12             Putting aside for now the instances where they point the finger

13     at each other, here are some of the other persons or institutions which

14     are routinely blamed, if you will:  Well, of course, perhaps the number

15     one is Boban.  The Prosecution has never denied, does not deny today,

16     that Boban was the president of Herceg-Bosna and at least on paper, at

17     least de jure, the supreme commander of the HVO military.

18             In connection with the Defence pointing at the famous empty chair

19     of the courtroom or empty chairs, perhaps to Boban in particular, perhaps

20     others that are not here in court, I would note what Robert Jackson said

21     in his closing at Nuremberg concerning a certain person or persons who

22     were missing from that trial, Jackson:

23              "I shall not dissent from this consensus, nor do I deny that all

24     these dead and missing men share the guilt.  In crimes so reprehensible

25     that degrees of guilt have lost their significance, they may have played

Page 51930

 1     the most evil parts, but their quilt cannot exculpate the defendants.

 2     Hitler did not carry all responsibility to the grave with him.  All the

 3     guilt is not wrapped in Himmler's shroud.  It these dead men whom these

 4     living chose to be their partners in this great conspiratorial

 5     brotherhood, and the crimes that they did together they must pay for one

 6     by one."

 7             Having said that, let's consider Boban's role and its relation to

 8     the evidence in this case.  First, even assuming that Boban had

 9     significant power, he could not have run Herceg-Bosna and the HVO all by

10     himself.  He could not and did not run the government.  Prlic did.  He

11     could not and did not run the HVO Department of Defence.  Stojic did.  He

12     could not and did not run the HVO Main Staff.  Praljak and Petkovic did.

13     He did not run the HVO military police.  Coric did.  He did not run the

14     service for exchange of prisoners and other persons.  Pusic did.

15             Second, even if Boban was a significant player, and surely he

16     was, surely he was -- you've heard the evidence over the last day and a

17     half already of Boban's role, and again the Prosecution has never denied

18     that, but even if he was a significant player, he was a leadership member

19     of the same joint criminal enterprise so that his acts and behaviour are

20     linked with and attributable to the other members of the joint criminal

21     enterprise, including the accused.

22             Assuming arguendo that Boban played a significant role in the

23     joint criminal enterprise, that does not negate or diminish the liability

24     of the various accused.  As Jackson said, they must be held responsible

25     for their crimes one by one.  The accused were members of the same JCE

Page 51931

 1     and are liable for every crime committed in pursuit of the common purpose

 2     provided that the crime can be imputed to a JCE member.  So pointing the

 3     finger at Boban, unless there is something very specific that somehow

 4     disconnects him from the joint criminal enterprise, pointing the finger

 5     at Boban does not really get them very far.

 6             Third, there is no evidence that Boban was a hands-on

 7     administrator as either president, that is head of state, not head of

 8     government because that was Mr. Prlic's role, or as supreme commander.

 9     The Stojic Defence expert witness Davor Marijan hit the nail on the head,

10     and I made reference to this earlier:

11             "Practically from the summer of 1992, we have no evidence that

12     Mr. Boban commanded the armed forces, which means he had delegated his

13     powers."  Transcript 35866.

14             Not a Prosecution witness, Defence expert.  There is no evidence.

15     We have no evidence that Mr. Boban commanded the armed forces.

16             Number four, throughout the Croat-Muslim conflict Boban spent

17     much if not most of his time abroad representing the HVO and the Bosnian

18     Croats in international peace negotiations and talks outside Bosnia in

19     such places as Zagreb, Geneva, and New York without having much knowledge

20     of many of the day-to-day military operations in the field.  The Chamber

21     has seen and heard evidence after evidence of his extensive involvement

22     in those sorts of activities.

23             Your Honour, again, out of an abundance of caution I'd ask to go

24     briefly into private session on some private-session testimony.

25             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Registrar.


Page 51932

 1                           [Private session]

 2   (redacted)

 3   (redacted)

 4   (redacted)

 5   (redacted)

 6   (redacted)

 7   (redacted)

 8   (redacted)

 9   (redacted)

10   (redacted)

11   (redacted)

12   (redacted)

13   (redacted)

14                           [Open session]

15             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, we're back in open session.

16             MR. SCOTT:  Next, Neven Tomic, Prlic Defence witness, was asked

17     this:

18             "How often was Mr. Boban, in your experience, how often was

19     Mr. Boban himself actually in Mostar during this time?  And I mean we're

20     roughly talking mid-1992 until the end of 1993, about an 18-month period.

21     I mean, you may have had an office, but perhaps you will tell us he was

22     never there or perhaps he was there every day.

23             "A.  He would come very seldom.  He spent most of his time in

24     Grude."

25             Number seven, the accused Slobodan Praljak:


Page 51933

 1             "For instance, you remember that convoy in Citluk.  So it was the

 2     civilians that stopped the convoy.  For the convoy to go through, one

 3     should first talk to the civilians and the person to do that should have

 4     been Mate Boban.  So that was a political issue.  But Mate Boban fails to

 5     appear for the talks, so Dr. Jadranko Prlic addresses the crowd."

 6             Once again, Boban's a no-show.  It falls to Mr. Prlic to actually

 7     do the work.  I suggest, and respectfully submit to the Chamber that that

 8     was true most of the time.

 9             As I mentioned previously, Davor Marijan made it very clear,

10     quote, "... practically from the summer of 1992, we have no evidence that

11     Mr. Boban commanded the armed forces."

12             Davor Marijan again:

13             "It's a fact, and at least I didn't see it, we have very few

14     documents from Mr. Boban in 1993.  I wonder if there are any, in fact.

15     There was a document about the establishment of a military district, but

16     not appointments, so obviously some powers have been transferred from

17     him, which doesn't mean that he did not remain the supreme commander."

18     In name, I suppose.

19             That's Boban.

20             Another organisation or entity that some of the accused like to

21     point as well that was the real power and the responsibility was the

22     HZ-HB Presidency, the legislative body.  Yes, that body did officially

23     exist de jure, and yes it did meet on some occasions, but there are two

24     fundamental problems with this being -- with that body being, if you

25     will, the fall-guy.  First, this was a legislative body, not an executive

Page 51934

 1     government or administrative authority.  Whatever laws or policies it

 2     might have made, it was not the body which administered, executed, or

 3     carried out those laws and policies.  Executing Herceg-Bosna law and

 4     policy was first and foremost the responsibility of the Prlic government,

 5     and Prlic, as we saw earlier, was personally and individually responsible

 6     for the work of his government.

 7             Second, and perhaps more importantly, the HZ -- HZ-HB Presidency

 8     was not in session during the period from 17 October 1992, to 28 August

 9     1993.  Not functioning, not meeting.  During that time, as I mentioned

10     earlier today, it had delegated its full legislative powers to the Prlic

11     government.  They weren't meeting.  They weren't in session.  They

12     weren't a factor.

13             Accordingly, during the core period of the indictment, from

14     October 1992 to at least the end of August 1993, Prlic's HVO government

15     again was the highest, most powerful body in Herceg-Bosna combining

16     supreme, executive, legislative, and administrative powers in that

17     government.  Indeed, the HVO's -- HVO government's own report for the

18     year 1992, it's year-end report, summarised and fully confirmed its

19     expanded powers, saying that, quote, "responsibility for determining

20     policies in all spheres," in all spheres, "have been transferred to the

21     Prlic government."  And that can be found at P00128.

22             The Defence witness Zoran Buntic, as I mentioned earlier today

23     but I'll briefly mention again in this specific context, made it clear

24     and testified, "The HVO HZ-HB was the highest executive and controlling

25     body.  That is beyond dispute."  His words, not mine.

Page 51935

 1             One or more of the accused from time to time have pointed the

 2     finger at the HDZ-BiH party.  We talked about that yesterday.  The party

 3     was not functioning.  The party was frozen.  The party was not a factor.

 4             Another frequent target, someone else that the finger was pointed

 5     at, were the HVO municipal authorities.  We talked about that earlier

 6     today.  Mr. Petkovic, Mr. Filipovic, and others clearly said

 7     unequivocally those bodies did not control, did not issue orders, did not

 8     direct the HVO military.  No one can point the finger at the HVO

 9     municipal authorities and say they were responsible.  They did not issue

10     the orders or give the direction.

11             The final topic for me at this point is -- that I want to close

12     with is this point, and that is that despite all the claims of no power,

13     no authority, no ability to act, the evidence is clear that the HVO and

14     these accused could take strong and forceful action when they really

15     wanted to.  The accused have generally claimed to have had no power or

16     ability to act, but the evidence shows clearly that they could take such

17     action if they chose to.

18             As just one example of -- P01598, a 3 March 1993 Petkovic order

19     which in part says:

20             "Due to reasonable suspicion that he abused his official position

21     as an HVO," general staff officer, "a Main Staff officer, abused the

22     official stamp ... and tried forcibly to take someone else's apartment, I

23     hereby order ... arrest this officer and investigate the above-mentioned

24     circumstances."

25             Wow.  He can investigate the abuse of a stamp, but I wonder about

Page 51936

 1     investigating abuse of Muslims and expulsions from their homes, their

 2     imprisonment, the destruction of their property, their deportation.  How

 3     about arresting and investigating people about those things rather than

 4     whether someone abused the use of an official stamp.

 5             The HVO government, including the Defence Department, invested

 6     substantial effort over a sustained course of time to enforce HVO

 7     mobilisation, that is, bringing Croat men into the HVO armed forces.  It

 8     is clear from a review of the government records and meetings that this

 9     was an ongoing important issue.  I refer the Chamber as an example to

10     4D00508, the minutes of an HVO government meeting on the 9th of October,

11     1993.  Prlic chaired the meeting with Stojic, Praljak, and Petkovic all

12     in attendance.

13             Item 6 deals with the issue of mobilisation and dealing with,

14     quote, "persons avoiding military obligation."

15             "In addition to criminal sanctions, other measures shall also be

16     taken against the persons avoiding military obligation.  The following

17     shall be done based on the exact list of persons avoiding their military

18     obligation (and the Defence Administrations are required to create those

19     lists immediately):

20              "They shall be prevented from receiving personal papers and

21     realising their rights resulting from dual citizenship in the Republic of

22     Croatia;

23             "The names of the people who are avoiding the military obligation

24     shall be published in the media - radio press, et cetera;

25              "Their families' shall lose their status of displaced persons or

Page 51937

 1     refugees;

 2              "Their families' electrical supply and telephone lines shall be

 3     cut and their privileges in receiving medical treatment, schooling, et

 4     cetera, revoked."

 5             Two days later, on 11 October 1993, Stojic issues an order to all

 6     military district courts and district military prosecutors, which is

 7     4D01655:

 8             "1.  All District Military Courts and District Military

 9     Prosecutors' Offices should give priority --" note that this is Stojic

10     giving orders to Judges and Prosecutors as to what they should do:

11             "All District Military Courts and Military Prosecutor's Offices

12     should give priority to the cases related to the failure to respond to

13     the call for general mobilisation and wilful abandonment of military

14     units."

15             Stojic then also ordered the assistance of the HVO military

16     police in carrying these actions out.

17             One can only wonder whether it might have made a difference of

18     such severe and draconian actions as cutting off their families'

19     displaced persons or refugee status and cutting off electrical supply --

20     their electrical supplies, blocking them from medical treatment, school,

21     one can only wonder if such severe sanctions had been threatened or taken

22     against people for the abuse of Muslims, for burning Muslim houses, for

23     raping Muslim women, for expelling them, for destroying mosques, whether

24     that might have made some difference, but there is no evidence of such a

25     strong HVO position or such sustained efforts being made as those we can

Page 51938

 1     see that could be made and were made in connection with the mobilisation

 2     of Croat men into the armed forces.

 3             A few other examples.  P03700.  Slobodan Praljak order dated 25

 4     July 1993 ordering HVO units from Kostajnica to Prozor:

 5             "Who does not carry out this order is to be disarmed, stripped of

 6     their HVO clothes, detained, and kept with no food or water until I come

 7     back."

 8             Fairly forceful action by an HVO commander.  There again, I

 9     wonder if that might have been done in response to misconduct toward

10     Muslims.

11             3D02798, a 12 October 1993 order by Mario Bradara, deputy

12     commander of the HVO Ban Jelacic Brigade in Kiseljak, prescribing

13     punishment for abandoning position on the confrontation line, prescribing

14     that the unit -- that the violator will be put in front of the unit --

15     put in front of his unit, excuse me, and shot.  The commander of his unit

16     shall be proclaimed a traitor and also shot.

17             Now, that may seem pretty extreme, but at least it was one

18     person's view of the action to be taken in response to misconduct.

19             As a final example, we have Mr. Petkovic's clear ability to take

20     aggressive action to protect his friend and colleague, Mr. Rajic,

21     Mr. Ivica Rajic, when he chose to do so.  The Chamber will recall that

22     Petkovic was fully capable of taking strong and decisive action when a

23     group of HVO soldiers in the Kiseljak area mistreated Rajic first in

24     mid-May 1993 and again in August 1993.  On the first occasion, Petkovic

25     suspended 12 HVO soldiers for their "maltreatment of Rajic."

Page 51939

 1             I'm just hesitating on a private session matter, Your Honours.  I

 2     think in light of your prior ruling, I'll say this:  When the

 3     misbehaviour of the HVO soldiers recurred in August 1993, Petkovic

 4     ordered an action to arrest nine or ten of the perpetrators, during which

 5     two of them were killed.  There was evidence to the effect that what --

 6     well, what did affect -- what affect did that action have on HVO command

 7     and control?

 8             "After the showdown with that criminal group you may say that the

 9     system of command was elevated to a somewhat higher level and that it was

10     much easier to be in command of the units that I was in command of.  Had

11     a positive effect on military discipline."

12             Mr. Petkovic could take those actions.  He didn't take others.

13             The failure by the HVO and the failure by these accused to take

14     meaningful action in response to misconduct and crimes against Muslims

15     wasn't a lack of means or a lack of opportunity but a lack of will.  It

16     was a lack of desire, being or becoming a decision not to do so, or

17     stated differently, there was no point in punishing those who were in

18     fact only carrying out HVO policy.  And if that wasn't the case

19     initially, that certainly came to be the case over time.  Acquiescence in

20     misconduct becomes ratification; ratification becomes approval; approval

21     becomes encouragement; encouragement becomes instigation; and instigation

22     becomes, in effect, ordering.

23             Your Honours, that completes my part, at least this part, of the

24     Prosecution's closing argument.  Thank you.

25             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Stringer.

Page 51940

 1             MR. STRINGER:  Good morning.  Thank you, Mr. President and Your

 2     Honours.  Greetings to you, Counsel.

 3             I'm prepared to begin at this time with the Prosecution's

 4     submissions on General Praljak.  One alternative, possibly,

 5     Mr. President, would be to take the break now for 20 minutes and then

 6     come back for the final hour and a half of the day, and then during the

 7     break we can make the transition.

 8             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very good idea.  Let's have our

 9     20-minute break now.

10                           --- Recess taken at 11.48 a.m.

11                           --- On resuming at 12.12 p.m.

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

13             You may proceed, Mr. Prosecutor.

14             MR. STRINGER:  Thank you, Your Honours.  Good afternoon, Your

15     Honours.  Good afternoon, Counsel.  May it please the Court, I will be

16     making the Prosecution's submissions on the case against General Slobodan

17     Praljak.

18             Not surprisingly, and like his co-accused, General Praljak denies

19     responsibility for any single crime that occurred throughout the entire

20     Herceg-Bosna territory throughout the entire HVO ABiH conflict.  Where

21     blame or responsibility is to be assigned, he assigns it to others,

22     including at times, his co-accused.  Praljak would have the Chamber

23     believe that he had no real power or authority over subordinates and no

24     knowledge of or ability to do anything about the widespread crimes

25     directed against the Muslim people who were unfortunate enough to find

Page 51941

 1     themselves in Herceg-Bosna with Praljak during late 1992 and throughout

 2     1993.

 3             The evidence, of course, paints a completely different picture,

 4     that of a strong-willed and charismatic commander and politician who

 5     achieved the highest political and military positions, assistant minister

 6     of defence for the Republic of Croatia, a member of the Croatian National

 7     Security Council, and trusted advisor to President Franjo Tudjman, a

 8     Major-General in the Croatian Army, and finally commander of the HVO Main

 9     Staff of the Croatian Defence Council, the HVO, in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

10             Praljak rose to this level not based on his qualifications or

11     military training, but rather based on, first, his fervent support of the

12     Tudjman policy of re-establishing something akin to a Croatian Banovina

13     in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and second, his willingness to do whatever it

14     takes, including committing and condoning crimes linked to the forced

15     movement of populations, to establish Herceg-Bosna in Bosnia-Herzegovina

16     as an autonomous, permanent Croat-dominated territory.  The evidence

17     shows that at all times, whether exercising his de facto authority over

18     HVO armed forces or his de jure authority after taking command of the HVO

19     Main Staff on 24 July 1993, Praljak was in control and was fully informed

20     of all significant events taking place throughout Herceg-Bosna, including

21     the widespread crimes and persecution carried out by his subordinates in

22     the HVO against the Muslim population.

23             As HVO commander, Praljak moved frequently and easily throughout

24     Herceg-Bosna, from Gornji Vakuf to Prozor to Mostar and down to the HVO

25     forward command post headquarters in Citluk, ensuring that he was fully

Page 51942

 1     informed of events on the ground.  He issued orders and directives to HVO

 2     subordinates from all of these locations, demonstrating his control over

 3     subordinate HVO units and their activities.

 4             When he was not in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Praljak was in Zagreb

 5     meeting with the Croatian leadership to discuss the Herceg-Bosna policy

 6     that he would then implement upon his return to Bosnia-Herzegovina.  We

 7     know now that Praljak also travelled to Hungary and to Montenegro in

 8     October of 1992 with other accused in this case for meetings with Ratko

 9     Mladic, commander of the VRS Main Staff, hoping to enlist his support and

10     collaboration in achieving the division of Bosnia-Herzegovina between the

11     Croats and the Serbs.

12             I will first address General Praljak's claims that there was no

13     joint criminal enterprise and that, in any event, he did not participate

14     in or contribute to a joint criminal enterprise.  He claims this

15     unequivocally from the very beginning of his brief in paragraphs 2 and 3.

16             Your Honours, the evidence establishes beyond all doubt that

17     Praljak, as well as his co-accused and other members of the Herceg-Bosna

18     JCE, had as their goal the establishment of an autonomous, permanent,

19     Croat-dominated entity within Bosnia-Herzegovina.  When I say

20     Croat-dominated, I mean that Praljak wanted to establish and maintain a

21     Croat majority population in this territory which they called

22     Herceg-Bosna.

23             On the 29th of June, 2009, Praljak testified:

24             "We were all hoping all that time that the leadership would

25     finally understand that Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina wanted only one

Page 51943

 1     thing, and that was an autonomy in the area that could have been 17 or 18

 2     per cent of the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina, an area in which they

 3     were an absolute or relative majority equal to anybody else."

 4             I believe Mr. Scott, my colleague, referred to this bit of

 5     testimony in his remarks yesterday when he was talking about two of the

 6     key things at that form part of the Prosecution's case, that of

 7     demographics and territory.

 8             Setting aside the fact that Praljak was in no position to decide

 9     what the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina wanted, Praljak's own words make

10     two things clear:  He and the accused wanted territory, and in that

11     territory they wanted the majority of people to be Croats.

12             Praljak testified on the 17th of August, 2009, transcript 43297,

13     that this should be a permanent autonomous area for Croats, completely

14     undermining Defence claims that Herceg-Bosna was simply a temporary

15     entity intended to fill in for the Bosnia-Herzegovina government.

16             In fact, Praljak's goal was identical to that of Prlic Defence

17     witness Zoran Buntic, who testified as a Defence witness in this case as

18     the former head of Herceg-Bosna's justice department.  The Trial Chamber

19     may recall his testimony in July of 2008, when he stated that he wanted

20     an area in which Croatian people would be in the majority.  He believed

21     the Serbs and the Muslims should have their own different areas where

22     they could be in the majority also.  That's at page 30881 of the

23     transcript.

24             Praljak was, of course, fully aware this vision necessarily

25     involved moving populations and that moving populations would require

Page 51944

 1     force and violence.  While it is true that many parts of the so-called

 2     Herceg-Bosna had majority Croat populations, it's also true that many

 3     other parts had majority Muslim populations.  Of course, in many

 4     municipalities, Croats and Muslims lived side by side and were mixed

 5     throughout the countryside, one of the defining attributes of

 6     Bosnia-Herzegovina itself at that time.

 7             We all know now that Mostar proclaimed to be the capital of

 8     Herceg-Bosna had been a place where Muslims and Croats intermarried in

 9     significant numbers, but Praljak was keenly aware that the Croat

10     population was declining even in areas where they were in majority and

11     that this trend was exacerbated by the fact that large numbers of

12     Muslims, themselves expelled from the Serb-held territories, were

13     arriving in areas claimed for Herceg-Bosna.

14             P00524 is a transcript of a meeting that occurred on the 26th of

15     September, 1992, at the presidential palace in Zagreb.

16     President Tudjman, Slobodan Praljak, and others were present.  At this

17     meeting, Praljak raised his concern with Tudjman, observing that

18     expulsion would be necessary in order to achieve a majority population.

19     As he said:

20             "As it seems now and due to the people settling on the territory

21     from Travnik and below, I am afraid our chances will be bad at the moment

22     when the war is over.  There has been a great change in the ethnic

23     structure.  And to solve that with them by war, the civil, the

24     international ... rights, et cetera, and it will be difficult in any form

25     to expel those people from there, and without expelling those people, we

Page 51945

 1     will not have a majority there."  Slobodan Praljak, on the 26th of

 2     September, 1992.

 3             Here Praljak clearly links forced population movement to the goal

 4     of achieving the desired Croat majority demographic.

 5             In paragraph 61 of his brief, Praljak tries to explain away this

 6     statement, claiming he was speaking in the conditional form, but his

 7     later actions prove otherwise.

 8             At the time of this conversation with President Tudjman in

 9     September of 1992, the Bosnian Serb armed forces had indeed driven

10     thousands of non-Serbs from their homes and villages throughout much of

11     Bosnia-Herzegovina.  This was, without doubt, the intended result of the

12     Serbs' campaign to establish their own autonomous entity in other parts

13     of Bosnia-Herzegovina where they, like the accused, like Croats, would be

14     in the majority.  In a post-war interview, Praljak indeed acknowledged

15     that he and the Serbs shared this view, this vision, for

16     Bosnia-Herzegovina.

17               This is P09447.  It's a clip that was played to General Praljak

18     during his cross-examination in this case.

19                           [Video-clip played]

20             THE INTERPRETER:  "[Voiceover] You had a communication problem

21     regarding political and military co-operation with Izetbegovic and the

22     Muslim army; on the other hand, the leadership in Zagreb fully supported

23     you.  How was this support manifested?  Can you remember a specific

24     meeting and action?  Can you give us a story?

25             "Praljak:  There have been many meetings.  The support consisted

Page 51946

 1     in -- well, once we realised what the intentions were -- the problem was

 2     that before the war, we were military allies with the Muslims, but the

 3     political ideas about a future state were completely opposite.  To be

 4     honest, the Serb's political options for Bosnia-Herzegovina were closer

 5     to the Croats than that of the Muslims.  Either we'll amend the

 6     constitution to provide for equal rights or we'll go separate ways."

 7             MR. STRINGER:  "To be honest, Serbs's political option for

 8     Bosnia-Herzegovina was closer to Croats than that of Muslims."

 9             That was indeed the case and is shown by the steps taken as early

10     as October 1992 by General Praljak.

11             P11376.  Ten days after observing to President Tudjman that it

12     would be necessary to expel the Muslims in order to achieve a majority,

13     Praljak, in his capacity as assistant minister of defence for the

14     Republic of Croatia, with the accused Prlic and Stojic, travelled to Pecu

15     in Hungary where they held a secret meeting with General Ratko Mladic on

16     the 5th of October, 1992, to discuss matters of common interest.

17             The Trial Chamber is by now familiar with General Mladic's notes

18     of this meeting at which Praljak distinctly described the objective:

19             "The goal is the Banovina of 1939; if not, we'll continue the

20     war."

21             He makes the additional remark:  "We shall not go further."

22             That's at the bottom of the highlighted portion that the

23     Trial Chamber sees.

24             I'd like to step off of this exhibit for a moment, Mr. President.

25     I'm going to come back to it but move to the next one, P00466, transcript

Page 51947

 1     of a meeting held not one month earlier, again in Zagreb, with

 2     President Tudjman.

 3             Your Honours, the Prosecution submits that in informing Mladic

 4     "we shall not go further," Praljak is repeating instructions issued by

 5     Tudjman during a meeting between Praljak, Tudjman, and Susak, only a few

 6     weeks earlier, on the 11th of September, when Tudjman made clear their

 7     military goal of holding the Banovina territory in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

 8     The HVO would not be involved in defending any territory of

 9     Bosnia-Herzegovina that fell outside of the 1939 Banovina which they

10     believed was, in fact, Croatia itself.  As Dr. Tudjman said:

11             "Gentlemen, gentlemen, let's not orient, we have nothing to

12     conquer, let's defend those Croatian ..."

13             Praljak says:

14             "Nowhere, Mr. President.  It is impossible to pass further."

15             Tudjman says:

16             "And let's get ready to cleanse them out of Croatia.  As I said,

17     do not get involved in conquering Bosnia.

18             "Praljak:  No, Mr. President, believe me, the attacks have been

19     stopped."

20             Susak then says:

21             "Nothing out of Banovina.  We did not trespass, not one even

22     metre."

23             The evidence thus shows that in this meeting -- in his meeting on

24     the 5th of October with Mladic, Praljak on behalf of Tudjman and Susak

25     were assuring Mladic that the HVO would not challenge the Serbs for any

Page 51948

 1     territory in Bosnia-Herzegovina that fell outside of the Banovina.

 2             Now moving back to P011376, the Mladic diary excerpt from the

 3     5th of October.  It's worth noting - this is on page 10, I believe of the

 4     English version - that at this meeting Praljak and the other accused,

 5     notably Bruno Stojic, agreed that the HVO would repair the hydro-electric

 6     plant at Jajce in order to provide the Serbs with electricity, in

 7     exchange for which the Serbs would release water for use at other power

 8     plants.

 9             We see this in P11377, which is an order issued by General Mladic

10     on the very next day after his meeting with Praljak, Stojic, and Prlic.

11             On the 6th of October, Mladic issued this order, referring to his

12     secret meeting with the leadership of the Croatian Community of

13     Herceg-Bosna, saying:

14             "... a meeting was held between the said leadership and the

15     representatives of the Army of Republika Srpska.  It was strictly

16     confidential meeting and no information should be given about it.  An

17     agreement was reached regarding a cease-fire, the repair of the Jajce 2

18     hydro power plant, release of water ... and the exchange of prisoners."

19             And then he issues this order in order to implement the

20     procedures necessary to bring about the operation of the hydro-electric

21     plant after its repair.

22             P11380.  Three weeks after the first meeting with Mladic in

23     Hungary, Praljak, now with Petkovic, Prlic, and Stojic, met with Mladic

24     again, this time in Njivice, Montenegro, on the 26th of October, 1992.

25     Here Praljak reported that his side had adhered to the fundamental

Page 51949

 1     agreement and had reconnected the electric power plant near Jajce.  He

 2     announced:

 3             "We're on a good path to compel Alija to divide Bosnia."

 4             Later in this meeting, he referred to the population movements he

 5     envisioned as part of the Herceg-Bosna plan, saying:

 6             "It is in our interest that the Muslims get their own canton so

 7     they have somewhere to move to."

 8             In having these discussions with none other than Ratko Mladic,

 9     the commander of the Bosnian Serb armed forces, in October of 1992,

10     Praljak undoubtedly knew that the demographic engineering necessary to

11     the establishment of an autonomous ethnic territory like Herceg-Bosna

12     could not be accomplished without the violence of forced transfers and

13     deportation, persecution, and destruction of property.  The Serb

14     experience made this clear, and all of the accused who were sitting that

15     day with Ratko Mladic in Montenegro knew it.  They knew the path they

16     were on.

17             3D00482.  Praljak again clearly expressed his views on

18     establishment of the Banovina territory in Bosnia-Herzegovina as an

19     autonomous Croat territory to a delegation of French officials during a

20     meeting held in Zagreb on the 13th of January, 1993.

21             While he reported that the Croats supported the territorial

22     integrity of Bosnia-Herzegovina, it's clear that to Praljak, this was

23     only within the borders of a divided Bosnia-Herzegovina organised along

24     separate ethnic lines.

25             P01788.  Praljak returned to the theme of population movements

Page 51950

 1     while chairing a meeting of HVO commanders in the Central Bosnia

 2     operative zone on April 2nd, 1993.  His co-accused Valentin Coric was

 3     present together with HZ-HB vice-president Dario Kordic as well as

 4     Ignjac Kostroman.  The Trial Chamber will recall that it was

 5     Mr. Kostroman, the gentleman from Central Bosnia, who had advocated that

 6     Herceg-Bosna should ultimately accede to become a part of Croatia in the

 7     meeting held with Tudjman in December of 1991.

 8             Meeting with the HVO commanders on the 2nd of April, 1993,

 9     Praljak shared his vision of the kind of society that Herceg-Bosna would

10     be for non-Croats and others who failed to support the Croatian Defence

11     council.  As he said:

12             "We shall ask for the HVO government and our provinces, those who

13     choose not to submit can leave our territories."

14             He continued:

15             "Now we have got what we want, the homogenisation of our

16     population continues.  We can only fence off what is ours and build there

17     our own space and our own state.  It is all as clear as noon on a spring

18     day."

19             For Praljak, establishment of the state was only part of the

20     goal.  In all of his references to the establishment of Herceg-Bosna, we

21     see from his own words that General Praljak consistently links this to

22     demographics and population movements:  "Croat majority," "expel them" to

23     have a majority, "homogenisation of populations," those who don't accept

24     the HVO governance can "leave our territories;" Muslims "moving into

25     their own canton."

Page 51951

 1             We know, of course, that none of the population movements Praljak

 2     anticipated would take place on their own peacefully and voluntarily.  In

 3     order to bring about the population movements and demographic changes he

 4     consistently refers to, Praljak and the other members of this joint

 5     criminal enterprise knew they would have to resort to crimes such as

 6     persecution, forcible transfer, deportation, and destruction.  We know

 7     that as time went on, other large-scale crimes linked to this, for

 8     example, imprisonment of all the Muslim men in the Bosnia-Herzegovina

 9     territory, were ultimately resorted to.

10             Your Honour, the Prosecution submits that the evidence firmly

11     establishes beyond a reasonable doubt the criminal goals of the

12     Herceg-Bosna joint criminal enterprise, and in particular,

13     General Praljak's participation in it.

14             Next I would like to address General Praljak's claim that he did

15     not significantly contribute to the joint criminal enterprise as he

16     states in paragraph 31 of his brief, and in order to illustrate one of

17     his primary contributions to the Herceg-Bosna JCE, his role as conduit

18     between the Croatian leadership in Zagreb and the HVO in Herceg-Bosna, I

19     will discuss the role Praljak played in the events in Gornji Vakuf in

20     January of 1993.  This discussion will also clearly establish that

21     Praljak wielded supreme military authority despite the fact that, as he

22     readily points out, he did not have at that time an official title or

23     rank within the HVO.

24             Not surprisingly, the story of the HVO offensive and military

25     success at Gornji Vakuf begins in Zagreb.  As the Trial Chamber is fully

Page 51952

 1     aware, these events are linked to the ultimatum issued on the

 2     15th of January, 1993, by Praljak's co-accused, Mr. Jadranko --

 3     Dr. Jadranko Prlic, by which Prlic and the HVO demanded units of the ABiH

 4     found in the Vance-Owen Peace Plan cantons 3, 8, and 10, must either

 5     subordinate themselves to the HVO or withdraw from those areas

 6     altogether.

 7             In paragraph 63 of his brief, Praljak recalls his testimony in

 8     which he claimed that the text of the ultimatum was, in fact, agreed upon

 9     between Bosnia-Herzegovina President Izetbegovic and the Croatian

10     leadership during meetings that took place in Zagreb during 13th and

11     14th of January, 1993.  I'm referring now to his testimony at pages 40568

12     and 69, on the 21st of May, 2009.

13             As Praljak said:

14             "And when it comes to the drafting of the so-called ultimatum, I

15     was involved in that together with some other people from the Muslim

16     delegation, in the presence of Mr. Alija Izetbegovic."

17             Praljak claimed that during the meetings in Zagreb, Izetbegovic

18     and the Muslim delegation agreed that the ABiH would be subordinated to

19     the HVO in Gornji Vakuf and elsewhere, or that the ABiH units would leave

20     those territories altogether.

21             Mr. President, Your Honours, the evidence does not support this

22     claim, and in fact, it shows that Praljak lied to the Trial Chamber in

23     giving this evidence.

24             In claiming that he participated in drafting the ultimatum in

25     Zagreb, Praljak led the Trial Chamber to believe that this alleged

Page 51953

 1     agreement with Izetbegovic was a written agreement.  In fact, as we learn

 2     on cross-examination, Praljak conceded that it was not written, nor was

 3     anything signed by the alleged parties.

 4             On the 24th of August, 2009, at page 43701, he conceded it was

 5     not written and it was not signed, saying:

 6             "I didn't say that anyone signed it on behalf of

 7     the ... Muslims."

 8             I asked him:

 9             "So your evidence is that this was an oral agreement on the

10     text?"

11             He says:

12             "Yes."

13             Consider this, Your Honours:  General Praljak wants the

14     Trial Chamber to believe that President Izetbegovic reached an oral

15     agreement with the leadership of the Republic of Croatia, providing

16     either for the withdrawal of units of the army from the parts of

17     Bosnia-Herzegovina falling within Vance-Owen cantons 3, 8, and 10, or for

18     the subordination of the ABiH units to the HVO in those areas.

19             Mr. President, I suggest that it is outlandish for anyone to make

20     such a suggestion that such an agreement, if it were to exist, would be

21     anything other than written and bearing signatures of all parties.

22     Neither Praljak nor any other accused in this case has produced any such

23     written agreement.  Praljak's testimony about this alleged oral agreement

24     on subordination or withdrawal of the ABiH to the HVO in

25     Vance-Owen cantons 3, 8, and 10 is not worthy of your belief.

Page 51954

 1             P01158.  This is a presidential transcript of the meeting held on

 2     the 15th of January, 1993, again in the presidential palace in Zagreb.

 3     President Izetbegovic was present at this meeting and they were

 4     discussing these matters.  And the text of this transcript makes it clear

 5     that as of the 15th of January, when this meeting was held in Zagreb,

 6     there was no agreement between Izetbegovic and the Croatian leadership on

 7     this matter of alleged subordination or withdrawal.

 8             As President Izetbegovic said:

 9             "Mr. Boban said he understood from these papers that the

10     armies -- that each army should withdraw to their territories.  That's

11     not how I understood the papers, and I don't know whether this was the

12     intention of these documents.

13              "Because I do not see that they define who has what territories,

14     whose armies these are, you know.  So I'm afraid what is now going on in

15     Gornji Vakuf may have been caused by a misunderstanding of this item of

16     these agreements.

17             "I'm not sure I understood Mr. Boban correctly.  But he seems to

18     have understood that, say, now, that the Bosnian Army should withdraw

19     from the region, from the Travnik province now, and the HVO should take

20     it over completely.  I did not understand these papers like this."

21             Here, Izetbegovic makes clear that there was no agreement

22     concerning the withdrawal or subordination of ABiH units in Gornji Vakuf

23     or anywhere else.  Based on Izetbegovic's comments at the 15 meeting,

24     January, in Zagreb, how can Praljak seriously contend that Izetbegovic

25     agreed to the text of the ultimatum that was issued on that day, the

Page 51955

 1     15th of January, 1993?

 2             Izetbegovic's rejection of the Croatia HVO's self-serving

 3     interpretation of the Vance-Owen Peace Plan didn't stop Praljak.  In an

 4     act that perfectly illustrates his role as the conduit or the bridge

 5     between Croatia's leadership and the leadership of Herceg-Bosna, Praljak

 6     travelled from Zagreb to Mostar on the 15th of January, personally

 7     handing the text of what became this ultimatum to Messrs. Prlic, Stojic,

 8     and General Petkovic there.

 9             The Trial Chamber is well acquainted with the evidence on what

10     happened next, when the HVO HZ-HB government convened to adopt this text.

11     Prlic issued the ultimatum, and it was then sent down the military chain

12     of command, reaching Gornji Vakuf on that same day.

13             This, of course, is not the end of General Praljak's involvement

14     in and his contribution to the HVO's campaign in Gornji Vakuf and the

15     eventual expulsion of the Muslim civilian population there.

16             On the 21st of May, 2009, at page 40580 of the transcript,

17     Praljak tells us that he went from Mostar and -- to Prozor.  As he says,

18     he arrived on the 16th of January:

19             "In the evening, I heard everybody, the information, the

20     arguments of the HVO officers, and I demanded that another round of talks

21     be held with the BH Army in the presence of the English officers from

22     UNPROFOR who were deployed there."

23             Now, in a moment we'll see that's a reference to the

24     British Battalion.  This right away tells us, General Praljak tell us by

25     his own admission, that he was immediately exercising his substantial

Page 51956

 1     de facto powers upon his arrival in Prozor, demanding another round of

 2     talks.

 3             At paragraph 235 of his brief, General Praljak tells us that he

 4     arrived in Prozor on the 16th of January.  We know that he had meetings

 5     there with the operative zone commander Zeljko Siljeg.  The evidence

 6     clearly establishes that upon his arrival in Prozor, Praljak exercised

 7     the greatest authority on behalf of the HVO armed forces, giving

 8     directions and orders to Siljeg that were immediately communicated in the

 9     form of demands and threats to the ABiH if they refused to accept the

10     terms of the previous day's ultimatum and the text which Praljak had

11     personally delivered from Zagreb.

12             P01163 is the British Battalion UNPROFOR report of that day's

13     events in Gornji Vakuf.  This is at page 3 of the document, under item E.

14             What it tells us is that even before he arrived in Prozor from

15     Mostar, Praljak was issuing orders to the HVO Prozor command from Mostar.

16     The British Battalion reported, on the 16th of January, that an HVO

17     Colonel Andreivitich - who we say is actually Colonel Miro Andric, his

18     name was misspelled by the British Battalion - read out a message from

19     his commander, a general in Mostar.  Since Petkovic was in Geneva at this

20     time, the commander that Andric refers to is clearly Slobodan Praljak.

21     The text of Praljak's message as read out by Andric and reported by the

22     British Battalion states:

23             "At the Geneva conference it was agreed that all provinces would

24     be administered by the leading ethnic group, in this area the Croats."

25             Praljak's message conveyed by Andric here, consistent with the

Page 51957

 1     text of the Prlic ultimatum, goes on to demand subordination of the ABiH

 2     to the HVO.  Praljak's message also contained a threat that if the ABiH

 3     did not comply "in return the Croats and the HVO guarantee nothing will

 4     happen to the Muslim population, less those suspected of or accused of

 5     war crimes."  The message continues by saying that if the ABiH agrees to

 6     the terms of this ultimate, "the Muslim population will be given full

 7     equality," as if Praljak reserved unto himself the authority to grant any

 8     one group full equality with any other group of inhabitants in this

 9     region.

10             P01174.  This is a report from the 17th of January by ABiH

11     commander Dzemal Merdan, who was involved in the negotiations with the

12     HVO on the ABiH side.  His report independently corroborates the text of

13     Praljak's demands as they were reported by the British Battalion.

14             We know, of course, that the ABiH did not agree to the terms

15     demanded by General Praljak and the HVO, and indeed, Praljak and the HVO

16     made good on their threat.  If Praljak had indicated nothing would happen

17     to the Muslim population if the ABiH agreed to his terms, something

18     indeed did happen to the Muslim population there in the days and weeks

19     following the ABiH rejection of the ultimatum.

20             The Muslim populations throughout Gornji Vakuf municipality were

21     instead attacked on the 18th of January in Gornji Vakuf town and in a

22     number of villages like Dusa, Hrasnica, Usricje, and Zdrimci, where they

23     were driven from their homes, their property taken, and their homes

24     destroyed.  The men were either taken away or detained at a makeshift HVO

25     detention centre at the furniture factory in Trnovaca, where they were

Page 51958

 1     beaten and abused.  The women and children were rounded up and crammed

 2     into a few empty houses, where they endured harsh conditions and

 3     mistreatment by the HVO for weeks before they were expelled in the ABiH

 4     territory.

 5             P01162.  Getting back to the 16th of January when Praljak did

 6     arrive in Prozor, he ratcheted up the rhetoric of his demands as soon as

 7     he arrived.  At 8.00 that evening, the HVO operative zone commander

 8     Siljeg sent this report to the HVO Main Staff headquarters in Mostar,

 9     reporting on the negotiations with the ABiH.  The bottom of page 2,

10     Siljeg states:

11             "Tonight, at Gornji Vakuf, Colonel Siljeg and Colonel Andric

12     negotiated with BH Army representatives.  There were no results.  Unless

13     there is an agreement, Gornji Vakuf southern strongholds (Uzricje, Duse,

14     mount Mackovac) will be taken and our line strengthened."

15             He then adds:

16             "General Praljak sent them a message that they will be

17     annihilated if they do not accept the decisions of the HZ-HB."

18             Throughout his testimony and throughout his brief General Praljak

19     has assured the Trial Chamber that, in fact, he was only sent to Gornji

20     Vakuf with the mission of calming the situation down, calming the

21     situation there.  Let's take a look and see who, in fact, was trying to

22     calm the situation.

23             P01168.  On the 16th of January, ABiH Commander Sefer Halilovic

24     sent this order from Sarajevo to all of his commands regarding the HVO

25     ultimatum issued on the previous day.  Item 3 orders them to take

Page 51959

 1     measures to "realise further co-operation with the HVO and to prevent any

 2     conflicts between HVO and the BiH Army.  Extreme behaviour of some

 3     individuals and groups within BH Army towards members of the HVO are to

 4     be prevented."

 5             Item 4:

 6             "Estimate current situation and possible conflict situations in

 7     relation to HVO HZ-HB decisions and make a plan of measures for

 8     preventing them."

 9             However, General Praljak's personal involvement in demanding the

10     subordination or withdrawal of the ABiH units from Gornji Vakuf and

11     elsewhere made the conflict there inevitable.  After the ABiH rejected

12     the HVO ultimatum and the demands issued by Praljak through Siljeg and

13     Andric, Praljak continued to exercise his de facto HVO authority to

14     support the HVO military operations in Gornji Vakuf.

15             P01202.  On the 18th of January, on the day of the attack,

16     Praljak issued this order from Prozor to the HVO south-east operative

17     zone, directing that certain assets be sent "due to the complicated

18     situation in Gornji Vakuf ... and the need to engage in combat activity."

19             In response to a question from Judge Antonetti, Praljak testified

20     that although he did not sign this order personally, he had said, "Okay.

21     Fine.  Use my authority, and we'll ask for those three pieces to be

22     returned."  That's at page 41882 of the transcript.

23             Praljak continued to direct and participate in HVO activities

24     affecting Gornji Vakuf in the following days.

25             P01293.  At this time, General Petkovic was in Geneva taking part

Page 51960

 1     in the negotiations there.  On what appears to be or is at least the 20th

 2     or 21st of January, 1993, the document itself is not dated, Petkovic

 3     issues this order from Geneva on a cease-fire, and further directing in

 4     item 3 that:

 5             "Colonel Siljeg is to report directly --" excuse me.

 6     "Colonel Siljeg is to report urgently to Brada in Mostar and send a

 7     report on the situation in Gornji Vakuf directly."

 8             In his testimony, Praljak acknowledged that Brada was a reference

 9     to him.  That's at page 44117.

10             P01277.  Siljeg clearly complied with Petkovic's order and

11     continued to take orders from Praljak, reporting on 23 January to the

12     Defence Department, as well as the HVO Main Staff, on the 23rd of

13     January:

14             "I issued necessary orders that were in the spirit of the orders

15     issued by 'Brada ' and they were carried out."

16             On the same day that Siljeg sent this report down to the HVO

17     Defence Department and Main Staff, the HVO continued to engage in ethnic

18     cleansing of the civilian Muslim population in Gornji Vakuf.  In its

19     report of 23 January, in item 3, this is P01278, the British Battalion

20     noted the HVO rocket attack on the village of Bistrica where houses in

21     the village were reported to be burning fiercely.  The report notes the

22     British Battalion Cheshire unit in the area was, quote, "keen to stress

23     that this was most definitely ethnic cleansing by Croats on a Muslim

24     village."

25             Your Honours, in this evidence on the lead-up in the events

Page 51961

 1     occurring in Gornji Vakuf in January 1993, the Prosecution submits that

 2     one finds overwhelming proof of Praljak's contribution to the

 3     Herceg-Bosna JCE and its goal of carving out an autonomous Croatian

 4     entity there at the expense of the Muslim population.  We also see the

 5     supreme de facto authority Praljak exercised in directing and controlling

 6     HVO communications with the ABiH side, insisting on implementation of the

 7     ultimatum, threatening annihilation in the event of refusal, and

 8     directing that additional military assets be transferred to the area when

 9     the HVO resort to force became necessary to achieve its goals.

10             There is yet another important point to make based on Praljak's

11     involvement in the events in Gornji Vakuf.  In his brief, Praljak denies

12     that the HVO-ABiH conflict was an international armed conflict, claiming

13     that many of the crimes alleged were bottom-up events, only tangentially

14     related to the wider conflict.

15             The Trial Chamber can reject this assertion based solely on

16     Praljak's role and the positions he held within the Croatian government

17     and the Croatian military before even taking command of the HVO Main

18     Staff in July of 1993.  For example, the leading role that Praljak played

19     in Gornji Vakuf compels the Trial Chamber to find a nexus between the

20     crimes committed there and international armed conflict.

21             The Prosecution brief, as well as annex material submitted with

22     it, fully demonstrates the existence of an international armed conflict

23     at all times of relevance in this case based on the overall control that

24     Croatia in its leadership exercised over the HVO and the direct and

25     active participation of Croatian Army units, personnel, and equipment

Page 51962

 1     fighting on the side of the HVO against the Army of Bosnia-Herzegovina

 2     inside Bosnia-Herzegovina.

 3             However, I would like to draw the Trial Chamber's attention to

 4     paragraphs 75 and 76 of the Prosecution brief in which we identify an

 5     additional basis on which to find international armed conflict based upon

 6     the language of the Appeals Chamber judgement in the Tadic case.

 7             In Tadic, the Appeals Chamber states:

 8             "International law renders any state responsible for acts in

 9     breach of international law performed (i) by individuals having the

10     formal status of organs of a state (and this occurs even when these

11     organs act ultra vires or contra legem) or (ii) by individuals who make

12     up organised groups subject to the State's control."

13             The Tadic judgement thus refers to state responsibility for the

14     acts of individuals having the formal status of organs of the state.

15     Until shortly before taking command of the HVO Main Staff in

16     July of 1993, General Praljak was an assistant minister of defence of the

17     neighbouring Republic of Croatia.  He was a major-general in its army.

18     He was a member of Croatia's National Security Council.

19             P01458.  This decision of Mr. Sarinic and the Croatian

20     Ministry of Defence, dated the 10th of February, 1993, tells us that

21     General Praljak was indeed on the payroll of the Croatian

22     Ministry of Defence in January of 1993, at the same time that he was down

23     in Gornji Vakuf directing Siljeg, Andric, and the HVO in their

24     negotiations with the ABiH and issuing threats on annihilation, issuing

25     orders on the movement of military equipment into the region.

Page 51963

 1             When he testified, Praljak agreed that his salary was paid by

 2     Croatia at all times during 1993, even after he took command of the

 3     HVO Main Staff.  That's at page 42993.

 4             Mr. President, Your Honours, there is no doubt that Praljak was

 5     indeed a de jure organ of the State of Croatia in Bosnia-Herzegovina

 6     until July 1993, when he resigned his positions as a Croatian official to

 7     take up his position as commander of the HVO Main Staff.  After the

 8     24th of July, 1993, he remained on Croatia's payroll and continued to

 9     confer with Tudjman and Susak, implementing Croatia's Herceg-Bosna policy

10     in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

11             On page 43001 of the transcript, there is a highly interesting

12     and relevant exchange that occurred between the two of us, myself and

13     General Praljak, during his cross-examination.

14             I put it to him:

15             "But at all times you were down in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and

16     your job was to see to it that President Tudjman's policies were

17     implemented and carried out; isn't that true?  He was your boss.  At all

18     times, you were answerable to him, and it was your job to implement his

19     policy; correct?

20             "A.  No.  I was implementing the policies of the Croatian state.

21     I wasn't there on a permanent basis.  I was there at very precise points

22     in time ..."

23             There's no question that as he told us himself, General Praljak

24     was in Bosnia-Herzegovina implementing the policies of Croatia, and that

25     has a huge impact on the question of international armed conflict even

Page 51964

 1     apart from the other issues and the points, which have amply been proven

 2     as well, regarding the HVO being a group under the overall control of the

 3     Croatian leadership or the direct participation of units and personnel

 4     and equipment of the Croatian Army in the conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

 5             I'd like to now turn to some issues and some discussion on

 6     command and control, General Praljak's effective command and control, his

 7     ability to impose discipline, disciplinary measures, and his powers to

 8     stop the many crimes that were being committed against the Bosnian Muslim

 9     populations throughout the areas that were under HVO control.

10             Throughout his brief, General Praljak claims repeatedly that he

11     was either not responsible for or could not control subordinate members

12     of the HVO who committed crimes.  He frames this issue largely as one of

13     command responsibility under Article 7(3) of the Statute, but in fact,

14     those issues are also directly linked to his criminal responsibility

15     under Article 7(1).  For example, Praljak claims he did not contribute to

16     the JCE.  In fact, his permissive and accepting attitude in regard to the

17     numerous crimes committed by his HVO subordinates, the command climate he

18     established by abandoning his obligation to protect civilians was itself

19     a very substantial contribution to the achievement of the Herceg-Bosna

20     JCE.  Issues of responsibility and the Praljak command climate also bear

21     directly on his liability under other parts of Article 7(1), such as

22     ordering, instigating, and aiding and abetting the widespread criminal

23     conduct of the HVO armed forces.

24             General Praljak denies having effective control over subordinates

25     unless he was physically present with them.  He claims he was powerless

Page 51965

 1     to punish perpetrators of crimes that weren't committed in his presence.

 2     He denies responsibility for the conduct of HVO soldiers who were not

 3     engaged in specific combat activities on the front line.  He denies

 4     responsibility for any crime that occurred when he was not commander of

 5     the HVO Main Staff.  He denies having any responsibility for the

 6     HVO prison camps and detention facilities or for the conditions and

 7     mistreatment of prisoners there.

 8             As an accused in this Tribunal, and more importantly as a

 9     commander of soldiers in the field who controlled the areas in which

10     large numbers of civilians were found, Praljak does not get to choose

11     between which aspects of effective command and control apply to him and

12     which do not.  He, without doubt, exercised effective control over his

13     men.  As he told you himself, he led them in battle frequently in Prozor,

14     Gornji Vakuf, Boksevica, and elsewhere.  He regained lost territory.  He

15     rallied the troops.  As General Praljak acknowledges in his brief, he did

16     have effective command and control of his subordinates when he was

17     physically present with them in the field in connection with their combat

18     taskings.  He testified several times about taking direct operational

19     control over military police units to deploy them in combat.  He issued

20     many orders, and those orders were carried out.

21             Let's look briefly at Exhibits P04640 and 4645.

22             In 4640, we see on the 30th of August, General Praljak issues an

23     order as commander of the Main Staff, from the Citluk headquarters to the

24     south of Mostar, directing that the commander of an Independent Battalion

25     submit a report to him as to why a certain order was not carried out.  He

Page 51966

 1     directed, that is, Praljak directed, in item 2, that this order was to be

 2     carried out immediately and unconditionally.

 3             We find in P04645 that on the very next day, the

 4     31st of August, 1993, the commander at issue did, indeed, submit a

 5     written statement to Praljak, as directed, acknowledging that the order

 6     had not been carried out, but informing Praljak that arrangements were

 7     made for this battalion to discharge its duties on the following day.

 8             The question of command and control we submit, Mr. President and

 9     Your Honours, is not seriously in question.  Praljak did indeed possess

10     and exercise effective command and control over his subordinates.  Had

11     Praljak shown himself to be unable to exercise effective command and

12     control over HVO subordinates prior to 24 July 1993, no one would have

13     considered appointing to him to the position of commander of the

14     HVO Main Staff at that time.  He was offered that position precisely

15     because he was effective.

16             What Praljak is really claiming is that he didn't have command

17     and control over his soldiers when they were committing crimes against

18     Muslim civilians who were living in areas under HVO control.  In other

19     words, for successful combat operations of the HVO, General Praljak

20     happily takes credit, but when blame is to be assigned for crimes

21     committed by his subordinates, Praljak conveniently asserts that he was

22     powerless to do anything about.

23             The fact is, apart from his empty words while testifying in this

24     case, there is no evidence that Praljak attempted to impose his will on

25     subordinates to stop them from committing crimes against the Muslim

Page 51967

 1     population or to punish subordinates for having done so.

 2             For purposes of his command responsibility under Article 7(3),

 3     the question, simply put, is whether Praljak had the material ability to

 4     take measures that would stop the crimes from happening, to prevent the

 5     perpetrators from committing more crimes or to punish or bring about the

 6     punishment of perpetrators.  The answer is, of course, Slobodan Praljak,

 7     assistant minister of defence for the Republic of Croatia, a

 8     Major-General in that army, and as commander of the HVO Main Staff did

 9     indeed have the material ability to do something about the crimes that

10     were happening all around him.  Did he make any genuine effort to do so?

11     The answer is no.

12             P03829.  Shortly after taking command of the HVO Main Staff on

13     the 30th of July, 1993, General Praljak demanded that Mr. Coric,

14     chief of the Military Police Administration, provide him with the names

15     of some military police officers who'd been involved in beating up the

16     drivers of a convoy from Germany.

17             We don't know where the convoy was destined to go or who its

18     beneficiaries would be, but we surely know that Praljak had no hesitation

19     on this occasion in demanding from the chief of the Military Police

20     Administration identification of the individuals involved.  He expressly

21     directed that those individuals were to be sent to him.

22             P03700.  I believe this is an order my colleague Mr. Scott

23     referred to in his submissions earlier today.  This is another Praljak

24     order.  Item number 2:

25             "Who does not carry out this order is to be disarmed, stripped

Page 51968

 1     off from the HVO clothes, detained ... kept with no food or water until I

 2     come back."

 3             P03706, 25th of July, 1993.  In an order to his operative zone

 4     Commander Siljeg personally:

 5             "Failure to carry out the received order until 1700 hours on

 6     26 July 1993 would mean:

 7             "1.  That the said commanders, as the most responsible persons,

 8     will be replaced and criminal proceedings instituted against them."

 9             P03773.  Another example of Praljak's willingness to threaten

10     serious consequences for misconduct or failing to carry out orders is

11     found in this document.  Here he threatens that commanders who fail to

12     carry out this order shall be held to account according to the HZ-HB

13     Criminal Code.

14             As the Appeals Chamber indicated in paragraph 63 of its judgement

15     in the Halilovic case, for purposes of command responsibility under

16     Article 7(3), the question is:  Did the accused genuinely try to prevent

17     or punish crimes by taking measures that fell within his material powers?

18             These examples that I've just shown in which Praljak demanded the

19     identity of perpetrators, for example, or threatened criminal proceedings

20     under the criminal law, these were all well within his sphere of

21     competence.  He very clearly believed that issuing orders and directives

22     like this was within his material powers as commander of the HVO.

23     However, there is not one example of Praljak ever issuing any order,

24     complaint, or threat like these against, for example, perpetrators of the

25     expulsion of Muslims from West Mostar throughout the many months that he

Page 51969

 1     was commander the Main Staff and as well as the weeks and months before

 2     that, or the campaign of terror directed again the Muslim population in

 3     Prozor throughout 1993, a place where he spent a lot of his time after

 4     taking command of the HVO Main Staff.

 5             Did he ever issue any orders or strongly-worded communications of

 6     any kind like this in order to bring an end to the forced labour?  We'll

 7     talk about that labour later, but the answer is he did not.

 8             He knew all of these crimes were occurring.  Did Praljak ever

 9     demand that Coric or anyone else provide him with the names of the

10     perpetrators of any of these crimes in West Mostar, Prozor or elsewhere?

11             There is no question that Praljak had the material ability and

12     the authority to issue such a command, and in doing so, he would have

13     made it clear that he would not tolerate such conduct.  He never

14     exercised this authority.  He never even tried.  He never even tried.

15             With the exception of Stupni Do, there is no evidence that

16     Praljak ever even ordered disciplinary measures against HVO soldiers who

17     committed crimes against Muslims or that he ordered an investigation of

18     any of the widespread crimes that occurred either prior to or after he

19     became commander of the HVO Main Staff.

20             You might be stripped of your uniform for failing to follow

21     orders but not for driving hundreds of Muslim civilians from their homes.

22             Although Praljak claims he wasn't responsible for HVO crimes

23     committed away from the front line or that he couldn't do anything about

24     crimes not committed in his presence, the truth is that he turned a blind

25     eye to the crimes committed by HVO soldiers when they weren't at the

Page 51970

 1     front line.  As he made very clear during his testimony, Praljak only

 2     cared about winning the war, winning the battle at hand.  He claimed, for

 3     example, that he could not discipline soldiers because this would result

 4     in their removal from the front line.

 5             Page 41035 of the transcript from the 2nd of June, 1992.

 6     General Praljak told us:

 7             "And on the assumption that you did have the power and authority

 8     to put 300 soldiers in prison, into some kind of prison, you still

 9     wouldn't have another 300 soldiers to take up their positions at the

10     front lines."  So it wasn't a problem that could be solved within the

11     frameworks of the resources that you had and the way in which we acted

12     and in which we existed.

13             Mr. President and Your Honours, I submit to you that it wouldn't

14     have required putting 300 soldiers in gaol.  Strong and decisive measures

15     against a smaller number would have certainly sent the signal and would

16     have had, as General Pringle tells us, a profound effect on the command

17     climate that existed under Praljak's command.

18             The Trial Chamber will recall that Praljak made a conscious

19     decision to subject the civilian population to even more crime and terror

20     by using police, both military and civilian, in combat operations.

21             Page 43991 of the transcript.  I'm sure the Trial Chamber will

22     recall these passages.

23             Here on cross-examination, General Praljak affirmed his earlier

24     testimony on the direct in which he had said:

25             "Such a use of the military police will significantly decrease

Page 51971

 1     the ability of the military police to perform their tasks, their normal

 2     tasks, and that for that reason there will be an increase in the rate of

 3     general crime, and there will also be a decrease in the number of those

 4     who will be arrested for those crimes."

 5             On the 27th of August, 2009, we return to this theme at page

 6     43997 of the transcript, with Judge Trechsel intervening with the

 7     following question asking for clarification from General Praljak on this:

 8             "You took that in account.  You were aware of it, and your point

 9     is that this was a case of necessity; that is to say, the situation was

10     so tense and the end of fighting the enemy justified the means of drawing

11     away a police force, which exposed civilians to a greater risk of crime.

12     Have I understood that correctly?"

13             General Praljak says:

14             "Correct.  Unfortunately, that's how it was.  You have understood

15     my answer correctly."

16             Moving down a number of lines he says:

17             "The military situation was such that it was necessary to have a

18     part of the military police force engaged in battle."

19             P04177.  The effect, the impact on the ground of

20     General Praljak's decision to abandon protection of the civilian

21     population is shown graphically in this report from the 14th of August,

22     1993, of a SIS officer in Prozor.  He describes the horrific situation

23     facing the Muslim population there at the time when Praljak himself was

24     personally in Prozor.

25             The report notes:

Page 51972

 1             "The arrival of soldiers and civilians into the municipality has

 2     caused an increase in crime, prostitution, removal of Muslims from prison

 3     and their liquidation, the extortion of gold, money, other valuables ...

 4              "Every day women and girls are taken out from the collection

 5     centres of Podgrade, Lapsunj, and Duge, which are not secure ..."

 6             We will talk more in my submissions about Mr. Coric, but it was,

 7     in fact, a primary role and responsibility of military police to provide

 8     security in the HVO detention centres.

 9              " ... collection centres are not secure and taken to houses

10     where they are raped, abused, humiliated.  For example, naked women have

11     to serve them.  They are beaten until they agree to have sex, and some

12     have their hair shaven off."

13             Next page.  After the reference to men going to the Muslim houses

14     and the mistreatment and abuse that takes place there, he reports:

15             "This has all been happening systematically for a considerable

16     time now, even though we informed the HVO President Mijo Jozic, the

17     brigade commander, and the commanders of the military and civilian police

18     of this in writing."

19             Moving on to the next page.  Whereas General Praljak, what's he

20     doing in the midst of all this terror reigning in Prozor?  At the bottom

21     of the page:

22             "The civilian police are unable to cope with all this and

23     recently they have been mostly in the field under the command of

24     General Slobodan Praljak."

25             The evidence proves that General Praljak concluded it would

Page 51973

 1     undermine the HVO's ability to win the war if he took steps to punish or

 2     discipline HVO soldiers committing crimes against Muslim civilians and so

 3     he did nothing.  Distilled down to its essence, as he indicated in

 4     responding to Judge Trechsel's question, General Praljak's position was

 5     that military necessity, i.e., winning the war, justified exposing the

 6     civilian population to the kind of widespread crime, persecution, and

 7     terror that we see in this SIS report and in other places as well, such

 8     as West Mostar.  However, as we note in our brief, military necessity is

 9     never justification for crime.  A military commander cannot simply

10     disregard the law and turn a blind eye to crimes by his subordinates

11     because that's what he needs to do to win the war.

12             Of course, the crimes condoned by General Praljak were a

13     necessary part of driving the Muslim population out of

14     Bosnia-Herzegovina, and it is here, Mr. President and Your Honours, that

15     the consequences of General Praljak's conscious decision not to prevent

16     or punish crimes, the consequences of that reach across from Article 7(3)

17     to Article 7(1) of the Statute.  Given Praljak's fervent support for the

18     establishment of a Croat-dominated Herceg-Bosna, a goal that necessarily

19     involved crimes linked to forced population movements, Praljak's

20     acceptance of widespread criminal conduct on the part of his subordinates

21     itself constitutes a significant, indeed a tremendous contribution to the

22     Herceg-Bosna JCE.

23             Joint criminal enterprise is, of course, a form of committing

24     under Article 7(1).  We don't have to speculate about what sort of --

25     excuse me -- what sort of command climate would exist when the

Page 51974

 1     highest-ranking commander denies all responsibility for conduct of his

 2     subordinates when they are out of his sight and when he knowingly exposes

 3     the civilian population to increased crime by condoning crime and

 4     deploying military and civilian police in combat operations.  The

 5     Trial Chamber need only read the reports of the evidence taking place --

 6     of the events taking place in Prozor, Mostar, and throughout

 7     Western Herzegovina and elsewhere, all of HVO-controlled territory, to

 8     see the kind of terror, expulsion, and destruction that flourish in such

 9     a climate.

10             This is the climate that Slobodan Praljak nurtured.  Win the war

11     at all cost, the end justifies the means.  Condone and turned a blind eye

12     to crimes by subordinates so long as they continue to return to their

13     front line positions the next day to fight for Herceg-Bosna.  Coming from

14     the supreme commander of the HVO, this was a supreme contribution to the

15     joint criminal enterprise.

16             Tribunal jurisprudence in such cases as Galic and others makes

17     clear that the repeated and consistent failure to prevent crimes or to

18     take reasonable and necessary measures against perpetrators can itself

19     lead to the conclusion that such crimes were intended and indeed ordered

20     under Article 7(1).  We know also that by repeatedly tolerating crimes,

21     the acts and omissions of a senior commander may constitute instigation

22     of crimes when he has created an environment permissive of criminal

23     behaviour.

24             These legal principles apply directly in the case of

25     General Praljak and his total unwillingness to exercise any form of

Page 51975

 1     control or discipline over his subordinates to deal with the widespread

 2     crimes of deportation, eviction, looting and appropriation, destruction

 3     of property directed against the Muslim civilian populations throughout

 4     the areas under HVO control.  The evidence shows that he, in fact,

 5     accepted these crimes as necessary to that objective.  The objective of,

 6     in his words, "fencing off what is ours and creating there our own

 7     State."

 8             Mr. President, I submit to you that it's all as clear as noon on

 9     a spring day.

10             This is a good time for me to break, Mr. President.

11             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  Absolutely.  It's

12     almost 1.45.  Time to adjourn.

13             As you know, we will resume tomorrow afternoon, because there's

14     been a change in the schedule of the Tolimir case.  So we will resume

15     tomorrow at 2.15.  Thank you.

16                           --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.42 p.m.,

17                           to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 9th day

18                           of February, 2011, at 2.15 p.m.