Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 10511

1 Tuesday, 1 October 2002

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.

5 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Nice.

6 MR. NICE: May the witness please come in.

7 JUDGE MAY: Before we get to the witness, let's look at the

8 exhibits if we can.

9 MR. NICE:. Yes. Can I explain the position about the exhibits.

10 The Chamber has, I think, four binders. They're in two categories. I

11 will only be asking the witness to deal with the first category of

12 exhibits in two binders and the two binders rather overstate the volume of

13 material that he will be dealing with because, as you will see, there is

14 one exhibit which is particularly large and we had to decide as to

15 producing it in part or in whole, and it seemed that it would run the risk

16 of unfairness to produce it only in part, although we'll only be looking

17 at it in part. That's tab 16, document C2954.

18 So in reality, the first two volumes or the two volumes of

19 category A materials are not as daunting as they look, and they are the

20 documents I will be asking the witness to deal with.

21 The second category of material comes in two binders and is

22 material I shall not be asking him to look at all but are exhibits that I

23 will be asking him simply to authenticate. They're documents we forecast

24 that it may be necessary for other witnesses to deal with, and although of

25 course authentication is not something we typically go through in a very

Page 10512

1 formal way dealing with document's authenticity only when they're

2 challenged, it seemed desirable given his ability to authenticate so many

3 documents that a simple exercise of authentication should be gone through.

4 So they will be dealt with by a single question, "Have you gone through

5 exhibits in those other volumes? Are they what they purport to be?" And

6 then they can be put on one side.

7 JUDGE MAY: Now, those documents include the ones which we've

8 already been handed in a small binder, small folder, rather, which were

9 the exhibits from, I think, the transcript, attached to the transcript.

10 MR. NICE: Yes. Your Honour, I was simply proposing to go through

11 the exhibits the binders that's we have, noting for cross-referral

12 purposes, where necessary, that they've been also produced in the

13 Dokmanovic case and transcript.

14 JUDGE MAY: As I said yesterday, we have read the transcript which

15 we've had, so there's no need to go over that in any great detail.

16 MR. NICE: I will be as sparing as I can. There are a few

17 background details, although some context is probably desirable. And the

18 witness will be dealing with matters here in more detail and with a

19 different focus than the way he was dealing with them in that case.

20 JUDGE MAY: And dealing with the timing issue, he will be here

21 tomorrow too. He's available tomorrow.

22 MR. NICE: Certainly today and tomorrow.

23 JUDGE MAY: Very well. There was one other matter. Yesterday I

24 asked for a map. We were discussing it. In Kosovo we had a very useful

25 atlas. It may not be possible to replicate that, but it would be helpful

Page 10513

1 to have a map of the entire area with the municipalities marked on.

2 MR. NICE: Well, Your Honour, I've put out a request several weeks

3 or months ago for similar maps or atlases. If all else fails, I'll simply

4 go and buy or have bought a series of road atlases because they will have

5 a road index and village names won't have changed and town names won't

6 have changed. But I know that the teams engaged on trying to see if we

7 can find something more like the Kosovo atlases to help you and I'll

8 report back as soon as I can.

9 JUDGE MAY: Thank you.

10 MR. NICE: May the witness come in, please.

11 JUDGE MAY: Yes?

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] According to the programme that I

13 have received, this witness, that is to say the witness who was examined

14 yesterday, the planned time for his examination-in-chief by the other side

15 was recorded as 6 hours but he was examined for almost eight hours. This

16 present witness, Stjepan Mesic the time plan for him was 10 hours. That's

17 was what was written down. And now I can see that suddenly, quite

18 precipitously this time has been shortened down to four hours, four and a

19 half hours for the examination in chief, at most, which introduces a

20 certain amount of chaos with regard to all this material and my

21 cross-examination in view of the time that I was first to have been

22 allotted, and I consider that practice of this kind is untenable. These

23 four large binders were something that I received last night or, rather,

24 at the close of business yesterday so that was the chance I had to look

25 into all the documents, but I hear now all the documents were disclosed in

Page 10514

1 advance. But I don't think that this is the proper way in which I should

2 be expected to work.

3 Of course I don't think that this is a big handicap for me in lieu

4 of the fact that this next witness in all respects is a problematic one in

5 view of his personal criminal control in the breakdown of Yugoslavia. But

6 --

7 JUDGE MAY: We're not hear to listen to your comments on the

8 witness. Now, in relation to your comments about the procedure, let me

9 deal with it in this way: First of all, as a matter of accuracy, the

10 first witness was six hours, ten minutes by my note, in

11 examination-in-chief, so that should be recorded.

12 Secondly, if this witness can be taken more shortly in

13 examination-in-chief, that is to be welcomed.

14 Thirdly, these documents had been disclosed before, so you have

15 had them before. You will also have the opportunity overnight looking at

16 them again to see if there are any of them you want to ask any questions

17 about. You will have the opportunity tomorrow of examining him.

18 We've dealt earlier with the procedure whereby this witness has

19 been interposed, so we have nothing to add to our rulings on those

20 matters.

21 Yes. Let us have the witness.

22 [The witness entered court]

23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] And I have another question. It has

24 nothing to do with this witness, Mr. May. May I please? Yesterday I

25 received a new list and order, and although I understood that you would be

Page 10515

1 providing these new lists with a time schedule as well, for example, after

2 this witness Stjepan Mesic, somebody else was introduced last night, his

3 name is Djuro Matovina, and he was on the list of witnesses in the 40th or

4 41st place, and you can check that out in that list, the list of witnesses

5 for this year. And then right after the next two witnesses, Slavko Kucuk

6 who was not on the list for this year nor was he in the list of witnesses

7 provided in the course of the year.

8 So with both these individuals, I would need to have the 125.000

9 pages available to me and for me to look through them all to find out

10 about witness under number 40 and 41, and I'm sure you don't expect me to

11 be able to get through all that material by the end of the year. I think

12 that this kind of procedure and practice, and we've already discussed

13 this, must be left behind once and for all.

14 JUDGE MAY: We'll consider the future witnesses in due course.

15 Let's hear this witness now.


17 [Witness answered through interpreter]

18 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness take the declaration.

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak

20 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

21 JUDGE MAY: If you'd take a seat. If you'd like to take a seat.

22 Examined by Mr. Nice:

23 Q. Your full name, please.

24 A. I don't hear anything.

25 Q. Your full name, please.

Page 10516

1 A. Stjepan Mesic.

2 Q. Mr. Mesic, are you presently the president of the Republic of

3 Croatia? Does your history which is a matter of public record reveal that

4 you were Prime Minister of Croatia in 1990, a member of the HDZ party,

5 first vice-president and then president of the SFRY's Presidency during

6 the events we are concerned with, and speaker of the parliament between

7 1992 and 1994, leaving the HDZ party in 1994? Is that correct?

8 A. Correct.

9 Q. The reason for leaving the HDZ party in 1994, in a sentence, was

10 what, please, Mr. Mesic?

11 A. Yes. You said quite rightly that after I had left the HDZ, I

12 formed another party, the Croatian Independent Democrats.

13 Q. And what was it about the HDZ that led you to your leaving it? In

14 a sentence.

15 A. I did not agree with the policies that were being waged with

16 respect to the division of Bosnia-Herzegovina. I did not agree with the

17 policy which had the wrong model of privatisation in view, and I asked for

18 the functioning of a legal state on the rule of law.

19 Q. I turn to the topic of the change in status of the provinces of

20 Kosovo and Vojvodina that happened in 1989 and thereafter, and we can deal

21 with this, I think, quite shortly.

22 The change in autonomous status of those two provinces, how was

23 that achieved and in what way was that connected to this accused, please?

24 A. Vojvodina and Kosovo were autonomous provinces and they were

25 constituent elements of the Federation, just like the six republics.

Page 10517

1 Serbia for a long time was not satisfied with the status of the provinces.

2 And after Slobodan Milosevic came to power, they started to breakdown the

3 status of Vojvodina and Kosovo, and this was done. They went ahead with

4 that, and the leadership was replaced in Vojvodina and Kosovo, and its

5 status was changed as well. For both of them, that is. So except

6 formally, they ceased to be constituent elements of the Federation.

7 Q. You say that the leadership of Vojvodina and Kosovo was changed,

8 was that changed, and we can have the names if necessary, but was it

9 changed by people more favourable towards the accused, less favourable

10 towards the accused or independent of the accused?

11 A. The job was done in such a way that meetings and rallies were

12 organised, and this was called the Anti-Bureaucratic Revolution. That's

13 what it was referred to as. So large rallies were held in Kosovo and in

14 Serbian Vojvodina, later on in Montenegro as well, and they led up towards

15 the change in the leadership which was in favour of autonomy. And then

16 we -- this was replaced and the leadership that came out in favour of the

17 constitution in 1974. A new leadership was brought in, and it was one

18 that Slobodan Milosevic liked.

19 Q. We've heard already of the accused's rise to office and power at

20 about this time. Can you just help us, though, with one matter? The

21 speech at Gazimestan, what effect, if any, did that have on people like

22 yourself and those to whom you were in contact?

23 A. After the speech at Gazimestan which Slobodan Milosevic delivered,

24 it was quite clear what the new leadership of Serbia wanted, and the

25 possibility of an armed struggle was intimated as well. What was said was

Page 10518

1 that everybody should prepare and make ready for waging a struggle, but he

2 said that armed struggles were not excluded. And that was the first time

3 that anybody in Yugoslavia had ever mentioned the possibility of a war

4 option, that is to say, the possibility of actually going to war.

5 And like many others, I came to realise that a restructuring of

6 Yugoslavia was being prepared which would no longer be a federal one and

7 which would no longer be the one prescribed by the 1974 constitution.

8 Q. And in the setting of the times, that single phrase "That armed

9 struggles were not to be excluded" did that have an effect on people's

10 understanding of what lay ahead?

11 A. That sentence actually mobilised the masses, the masses who

12 supported the policy waged in this way towards the disappearance of

13 Yugoslavia, because Yugoslavia, as a federation, can be envisaged and

14 thought of as a chain, a chain in which the republics and provinces were

15 the links linking up the chain.

16 Now, if you do away with one of the links, the chain is no longer

17 able to function. In other words, the Federation ceases to function. And

18 this meant that they were moving towards the end of the kind of Yugoslavia

19 that we had had up until then.

20 Yugoslavia, and I have to explain this, had three integral factors

21 or integrating factors. One was Tito. The second factor was the League

22 of Communists of Yugoslavia, and the third factor was the army. Tito had

23 disappeared, the party had disappeared, and all that remained to be done

24 was for the army to fall. So all this indicated the breakdown of the kind

25 of Yugoslavia that had been established in 1974, that is to say, by the

Page 10519

1 constitution of 1974.

2 Q. I turn from your observations about those events to your first

3 encounter with the accused. In what year did that happen?

4 A. Well, I followed the development of the accused in his rise to

5 power, which is to say from the eighth meeting of the Serbian Central

6 Committee and then via the destruction of the Vojvodina and Kosovo and

7 Montenegrin leadership. I followed his ascent right up to the time when I

8 met him personally, which was when I personally arrived in Belgrade when I

9 was elected to the Croatian Sabor Assembly as member of the Presidency of

10 Yugoslavia.

11 Q. And your first face-to-face meeting with him was where? Was it in

12 the parliament? And if so, can you tell us -- wherever it was, can you

13 tell us what was said?

14 A. After I was elected, after great pressure being exerted on

15 Slobodan Milosevic to acquiesce and to agree with respect to me and

16 Croatia taking its rightful place in the Presidency of Yugoslavia, let me

17 say there was great pressure being exerted from the Serbian bloc in the

18 Presidency by which Milosevic worked. The pressure was to exclude me,

19 although the Croatian Sabor or Assembly had elected me, but they wanted to

20 exclude me from the Presidency saying the Croatian Assembly could bring

21 anybody else though chose to bring. Of course this was impossible because

22 there were rules and regulations, rules of procedure and laws according to

23 which this could not be changed. And there was great pressure from the

24 international community which led to the fact that I was indeed elected.

25 And then Milosevic called me up, called me into his cabinet together with

Page 10520

1 President Tudjman, and that was where we had our first meeting and talks.

2 Q. What do you remember of what he said on that occasion, Mr. Mesic?

3 A. Well, there are two topics of discussion. One was Kosovo, the

4 Kosovo issue, because we wondered how this problem was going to be solved

5 because it was one that was a burden to the whole of Yugoslavia. Were we

6 looking for a political solution?

7 Milosevic said that we don't know the Albanians. We don't know

8 what they're like. And he said, "When you give them a good slap on the

9 face, then they'll be obedient, and that's how we'll solve that point."

10 The second topic was that if Yugoslavia were to disappear, this

11 would mean the return of the Muslims who had left and gone to Turkey and

12 other countries, and that on the territory of the former Yugoslavia, about

13 500.000 people of this kind would return, and they would change the

14 national composition, the ethnic composition of the country, and this, in

15 his opinion, would be a great problem for all the countries of the then --

16 or the regions of the then-Yugoslavia. And to support this view, he

17 provided a document, documents and reports, which were elaborated and

18 compiled by the greatest demographic experts. I took a look at those

19 documents, but my only comment to them was that I think that Turkey -- I

20 said that Turkey has a sufficiently high growth rate, and it seemed to me

21 improbable that 500.000 Turks and Muslims would return. But President

22 Tudjman took all these documents with him and took them back to Zagreb.

23 Q. Did President Tudjman appear to have approve of the contents of

24 these reports or not?

25 A. He didn't comment much. He read some passages out loud, read

Page 10521












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10522

1 through some others and took the documents to Zagreb. And when we met in

2 Zagreb, when the leaders met in Zagreb, he took out all these documents

3 and all he said was, "Here you have world experts and their views, and

4 they stress that if Yugoslavia were to disappear, 500.000 Muslims who had

5 previously left Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, et cetera, and

6 Sandzak, the Sandzak area, the part of the Sandzak which is in Serbia,

7 that they would return." He did not give the document to anybody else to

8 read. He did not say that this was compiled by the people who lived in

9 Belgrade or, rather, that they were Serb experts. He said that they were

10 world experts. So he lent that material a bit more importance by doing

11 so.

12 Q. I turn now to the establishment of the SDS party in Croatia and

13 the establishment of the Serbian autonomous districts. Can you please in

14 a very short time, summarising as far as you can, how it was that those

15 Serbian autonomous districts developed and the influence, if any, of the

16 accused over the SDS party in Croatia.

17 A. Well, I'm quite certain that Milosevic didn't favour any kind of

18 Yugoslavia that would be either federal or confederal. That was not what

19 he wanted. What he was interested in was a Greater Serbia which would be

20 created upon the ruins of the former Yugoslavia. And in that case, the

21 Serbian national minority in Croatia was to play a role, and that is why

22 rallies were held there as in Serbia. They were held in the

23 municipalities where the majority of the population were Serbs.

24 Let me just say at this juncture that as Prime Minister of the

25 government of Croatia, when the first clashes arose with some of the

Page 10523

1 leaders of those municipalities that I asked to have talks with all the

2 presidents of the municipalities. It was six or seven municipalities, and

3 I wanted to speak to all of them to clear up these misunderstandings.

4 They agreed to meet me and to see what issues had to be solved, what the

5 problems were that could be solved round the table, round the negotiating

6 table, and not rallies, because you know, no problems can be solved out in

7 the streets.

8 All of them agreed to meet me except Milan Babic, who was the

9 president of the municipality or, rather, the mayor of Knin. He was not

10 present. And his secretary, the secretary of the municipality, I think

11 his name was Knezevic, told me that Babic was in Belgrade, that he was

12 seeing Milosevic, and that until Babic returned, he couldn't tell me

13 anything. He couldn't say yes or no. But regardless of whether the

14 meeting would be held in Plitvice, Zagreb, or anywhere else, he would

15 come.

16 Now, as the secretary did not phone me back for a few days, I

17 called up the municipality of Knin once again. That same secretary

18 answered the phone and he said that President Babic had arrived back from

19 Belgrade, that he had forbade all municipality presidents to have any

20 contacts or anything to do with me or the government, the Croatian

21 government, and that a meeting was out of the question. I didn't talk to

22 Babic personally, but that is what the secretary conveyed to me. So this

23 was an overture, an introduction to rendering the decision on territorial

24 autonomy for that part of the country with a predominantly Serb

25 population.

Page 10524

1 Q. Babic's position following his visit to Belgrade, was it ever

2 explained one way or another who, if anybody else, lay behind his

3 position?

4 A. Well, when on the 17th of August the so-called log revolution took

5 place and the access roads were shut off in many municipalities, that is

6 to say roads leading through Knin, it was quite clear that this was an

7 attempt at secession, to break off a part of Croatia. The army lent its

8 support to this attempt, and the attempt to do away with the logs by using

9 the police force and to open up the communications and roads going through

10 this vital region of Croatia was not successful because the army prevented

11 it.

12 However, when I went to Belgrade myself, that is to say when I was

13 no longer Prime Minister, when that term of office ceased, I went to

14 Belgrade to be vice-president of the Federal Presidency, I received

15 information there from my staff, those who were loyal to me, otherwise

16 they're all from Belgrade, but they told me that Babic and others were

17 coming from Knin and that they would be having a meeting with Milosevic

18 and Boro Jovic, members of the Presidency of Yugoslavia from Serbia.

19 I told Boro Jovic that if the Croats from Serbia were to come, I

20 would call him because he was their representative in the Presidency. But

21 when somebody was coming from Croatia, I kindly asked him that he inform

22 me because they were citizens of the Republic of Croatia. He agreed to do

23 this, and that's how Babic and I found ourselves in the cabinet of Boro

24 Jovic, in his office, and he just said that the two were tricking him and

25 that there was no question of autonomy and that there was no question of

Page 10525

1 the kind of republic that they wanted to see and that they had deceived

2 him, that Milosevic and Boro Jovic had deceived him and that we could

3 decide all these issues in Zagreb, that we could quite easily sit down to

4 the negotiating table and see what the outstanding issues were. He

5 laughed and said that he would have a state sooner or later. And I said

6 to him -- my response was, "You're going to lose everything, and you're

7 not even going to have an office of any kind, a surgery, let alone

8 anything else."

9 MR. NICE: Your Honour, we're now going to turn to the one exhibit

10 that's substantial and slightly difficult to handle. It's the only time I

11 think we're going to turn to it in detail. It's at the end of volume one

12 of your materials, and in the new tab formulation, which I hope you find

13 helpful and which we're indebted to Ms. Dicklich and Mr. Reid, I think.

14 It's tab 16, C294. What I ask is that the usher takes the Croatian

15 version of that which she has already. Page numbers don't entirely match.

16 The page numbers that the usher can find are at the top of the bundle, and

17 so I'm going to ask her in due course to be making those pages available

18 to the witness to look at.

19 In fact, what I think I'll do is the following: If the usher

20 could be good enough, first of all, to take that exhibit and lay it on the

21 overhead projector, page 1 of it. Yes. Take the whole exhibit with you,

22 I think.

23 JUDGE MAY: Well, the exhibit should be given a number at this

24 stage.

25 MR. NICE: If the entire bundle could be given its own number with

Page 10526

1 tab numbers for identification of the individual exhibits, that might be

2 helpful, and any tabs that aren't produced can be removed.

3 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecution Exhibit 328.

4 MR. NICE: Thank you very much. If we look at, then, tab 16,

5 because that is what this exhibit is, of Exhibit 328, and we can look at

6 the overhead projector, we don't need a translation for the time being, we

7 can see, Mr. Mesic, that this was a meeting on the 12th of July of the

8 Presidency of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and these, as

9 we'll see when we look at the English translation, are its official

10 minutes.

11 Just looking at this part of the document, we can see the names of

12 those attending and their positions at the time. Included were yourself

13 as President, and then Vice-President Branko Kostic, and members of the

14 Presidency and I use their surnames for speed, Tupurkovski, Jovic,

15 Bogicevic, another Kostic, Jugoslav Kostic, and Bajramovic. And in

16 addition to those people present, there was also the President of the

17 Federal Parliament, Slobodan Gligorijevic; the Prime Minister, Ante

18 Markovic; and the Federal Defence Minister, General Veljko Kadijevic;

19 Foreign Minister, Budimir Loncar; Federal Ministry of the Interior, Petar

20 Gracanin; assistant to the Federal Defence Minister, Admiral Brovet;

21 Ambassador in the Federal Foreign Ministry, Zivojin Jazic; and General

22 Secretary of the Presidency, whose name you'll see later, Anton Stari and

23 others.

24 That's the meeting for which these extensive minutes are a record;

25 is that correct?

Page 10527

1 A. Yes, that's correct.

2 Q. And I hope this isn't a change of plans that would inconvenience

3 the usher. I think if the witness now has the entire stack of the

4 Croatian version of this document, which would mean getting the balance

5 from your desk, we can then display to those looking at the proceedings

6 the English version, because I think Mr. Mesic will be able to find the

7 appropriate pages in the Croatian version. So if you give him the balance

8 of that and he can just have those. Just give him that underneath the

9 pile he's got there already.

10 Mr. Mesic, if you could just allow the usher to reconstitute the

11 exhibit. If you could just hand those papers to the usher, please, just

12 for a second. I think I'd better have a look at them just before we go on

13 and make sure that -- can you bring me all of the papers, please. My

14 mistake. Thank you. Thank you very much. Give those to him.

15 If you've not got an English version -- right. Thank you very

16 much.

17 We now hand an English version to the usher, please. And if the

18 usher would be good enough to put on the overhead projector pages -- page

19 69 in the English version.

20 And Mr. Mesic, if you would be good enough, please, to go to page

21 82. We're going to see through these notes, amongst other things, how you

22 were recording the history and position at that time.

23 With RI on page 82 of this meeting and RI on page 68 and more

24 particularly 69, did you speak at that meeting about the log revolution

25 that had begun in Knin, and did you go on -- and we can see this really in

Page 10528

1 the middle of the page on the screen: "I think it is perfectly obvious

2 what was intended. Then in order to prevent inter-ethnic clashes, the

3 army comes to separate the two sides." You were speaking here of

4 Plitvice, I think. "Gentlemen," you said, "there are no two sides in

5 Croatia. There is Croatian government and those who oppose that

6 government. If we accept this basic fact, then we can resolve the problem

7 on a principled basis. Let me say quite openly that we are witnessing

8 Serbian imperialism, whose aim is to create a Greater Serbia on the rubble

9 of this Yugoslavia. For this reason, Greater Serbian circles have no

10 interest in protecting the Serbian people living in either Croatia or

11 Bosnia or anywhere else. If that were the case, then we could look and

12 see what it is in the Croatian constitution, see what is in the

13 declaration on minorities, on the Serbs in Croatia and on minorities,

14 because the Serbs are treated separately there."

15 You went on to say: "Let us see if the Serbs have less rights

16 than the Croats in Croatia. That would be protecting the Serbs in

17 Croatia. But that is not what is sought. Gentlemen, what they want is

18 territory. They want to grab Croatian territory and they to trick the

19 army into doing it for them. This explains the mobilisations in Serbia

20 and Montenegro and the deployment of tanks on the border. Serbian

21 reservists come to garrisons in Croatia and tanks come to Beli Manastir

22 and other borders and now they want to trick the army into doing the job.

23 So we shall withdraw from Slovenia, but we will not allow observers in

24 Croatia, and we will force Croatia to its knees. Gentlemen, this can be

25 done, but only with a terrible war and rivers of blood. Croatia will

Page 10529

1 never give a millimetre to Serbia. That should be clear, once and for

2 all, and there can be no Serbian Autonomous Region of Krajina.

3 "Communication," you said, "is possible between the Serbs and Croats in

4 Croatia, with observers if necessary, either international or Yugoslav."

5 To save time I pass on the next page to the concluding paragraph

6 of what you then said, at the top of the page. Just a little higher up.

7 Thank you very much.

8 "Here, it is stated," you said, "that the Serbian people are

9 constantly terrorised." Speaking of what allegations were made. You went

10 on to say, "Not a single example is given where the police have done

11 anything to anyone because of their ethnicity." Dealing with Knin you

12 said, "The police intervened in Knin, Obrovac and Benkovac only after

13 armed groups of citizens occupied police stations and took away weapons.

14 In Pakrac, a group of armed men captured 10 policemen, occupied the police

15 station and declared it part of the SAO Krajina."

16 Mr. Mesic, those were your words at this meeting. Were they a

17 honest and contemporaneous account of what had been happening?

18 A. Yes. This is what happened, and this is what I said at the

19 meeting of the Presidency.

20 Q. Can we turn in the English version to page 74. And, Mr. Mesic,

21 can you turn in the B/C/S version to page 88.

22 Did you shortly after say this: "Well, in the crisis spots the

23 JNA will continue to play its role by separating the warring sides and

24 preventing the spread of inter-ethnic clashes. In other words, White

25 Eagles, Dusan Silni and Bozur, you can all continue to come to Croatia

Page 10530

1 because the army will protect you, because you are a warring partner, and

2 so we are again to invade the Krajina."

3 You concluded after those observations about the White Eagles and

4 the others: "The army must withdraw to barracks and defend only the

5 international borders of the state."

6 Can you perhaps, Mr. Mesic, explain those words to us in just a

7 little more detail?

8 A. In the Presidency of Yugoslavia, I insisted that the army should

9 return to the barracks and that it should not play a political role, that

10 it should not be a political arbiter. Serbia, that is Slobodan Milosevic,

11 however, wanted the army to ostensibly divide the two sides, but there

12 were no two sides. It was those who were attacking and taking police

13 stations who, as later became quite evident, were trying to establish the

14 borders of a Greater Serbia running from Virovitica through Karlovac to

15 Karlobag. If you look at all the acts of provocation that took place,

16 they were actually setting up the borders of a Greater Serbia. This was

17 obvious, but it was also obvious to the army what sort of job it was

18 performing, because Milosevic said, "Let Slovenia go." We know why he

19 said that, because there were no indigenous Serbs in Slovenia. He said,

20 "Let Croatia also leave Yugoslavia but not those Serbs who want to remain

21 in Croatia." The territory on which the Serbs lived was, according to

22 him, to remain in Yugoslavia. So the Croats could leave but without the

23 territory inhabited by Serbs. This territory was not inhabited only by

24 Serbs, but they were the majority in those areas.

25 This was a trick. This was meant to deceive international public

Page 10531












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10532

1 opinion, Yugoslav public opinion, but it was also meant to deceive the

2 Serbs in Croatia. The Serbs in Croatia were needed only to ignite the

3 fuse in order for the war to be transferred to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

4 And with regard to Croatia, whatever territory could be wrested

5 from it would be joined to a Greater Serbia. The Serbs in Croatia were

6 tricked because Milosevic had told them that all the Serbs would live

7 together in a single state and that this was their right because they had

8 the right to self-determination. He was deceiving the world because he

9 was saying that he was fighting for Yugoslavia. However, he was doing

10 everything to destroy it.

11 The constitution of 1974 said that the republics were states, and

12 it was republics that had the right to self-determination; that is, they

13 had the right to stay in the Federation or to secede from if. This could

14 not be resolved by force. The deception was that he promised the Serbs

15 they would remain in a single state because, as he said, they had been

16 living in a single state up to that point. However, this was a community

17 on a confederal model where the republics were actually states.

18 Q. Can we turn over now to page 89 in the English, pages 107 to 108,

19 Mr. Mesic, in the Croatian version to where you turn again - and we can

20 look at it shortly - to the withdrawal of the army and connection of that

21 to those coming from else where in armed state.

22 In the middle of the page and this is you still speaking, you said

23 this: "I assure you that if the army withdraws to barracks, and if all

24 those who came from else where return with their weapons to wherever they

25 came from, if the Croatian authorities grant amnesty to all those who took

Page 10533

1 part, there would be no problems and no crisis spots. If we continue like

2 this, separating the warring sides as if there were two states in Croatia,

3 one being the SAO Krajina, let me paraphrase," you said, "because I have

4 it written down somewhere what Martic and Babic said." And then you

5 quoted, "We have the full support of the Yugoslav People's Army, and we

6 are both doing the same thing as it is defending Yugoslavia."

7 You went on: "They were defending Yugoslavia, but they did not

8 mention that they were destroying Croatia. Furthermore, they say that

9 Serbia, that is, the authorities in Serbia, support Krajina with all their

10 measures."

11 Was that quotation attributed to Martic and Babic a correct

12 attribution, please?

13 A. This is correct. What they wanted was to provoke a conflict, then

14 bring in the army which would separate the warring sides ostensibly, and

15 then to set up a new border. This was their interest, and this is what

16 was done. That is why at this meeting I said that if a republic asks for

17 help, the other republics or the federal bodies should provide it. But no

18 one could impose on Croatia solutions which would have to be solved by the

19 police. The army cannot be used to solve these problems.

20 Q. Thank you. If we can look at the foot of the English page, page

21 89, we come to the next passage of yours, Mr. Mesic, and it may be that we

22 will ask you -- I will in fact, ask you to read the last sentence yourself

23 and ask the court interpreters to translate it for us.

24 If you'd follow me, please, however, until the last sentence. You

25 said this: "Support --" I'll give the context.

Page 10534

1 Kadijevic had asked: "When did Babic say that?" You said:

2 "Support SAO Krajina with all their means," in quotation marks, saying,

3 "These are their words, not mine. They also say that the authorities in

4 Serbia support them financially and by all other means. The authorities

5 in Serbia should say, 'We have nothing to do with you. You have to solve

6 the problems here, which is the only place where you can resolve them.'"

7 And could you, please, Mr. Mesic, just read in Croatian the last

8 sentence of that passage in order that any error of translation in the

9 English transcript can be corrected. Could you read the last phrase,

10 please, on page 108.

11 A. "Therefore, Serbia --

12 Q. My mistake.

13 A. "Official Serbia is supporting SAO Krajina by all measures." Then

14 Veljko Kadijevic --

15 Q. Simply the last sentence beginning "Ali, Ali mislim." Just read

16 that sentence, please.

17 A. "But I think that this is like speaking to a deaf person. It was

18 falling on deaf ears, because these arguments meant nothing to them

19 because Milosevic was carrying out his plan.

20 Q. Your Honours will notice the different emphasis in that phrase

21 than the phrase that is in the translation. Thank you.

22 Can we turn from page 89 in the English right onto page 205, and

23 could you, Mr. Mesic, be good enough to go to page 226.

24 And here I'm going to ask you to comment on not just what you said

25 but also on what Veljko Kadijevic said in this passage. He says: "That

Page 10535

1 is a question that needs to be resolved now. It is a big question.

2 "You are seriously wrong if you think that the matter will be

3 resolved if the army is withdrawn now, and you can embark on 'settling'

4 matters there. Then there would be a real bloodbath. Why do that? This

5 way we will be able to find a solution by peaceful means."

6 To which you responded: "Croatian territory is being seized."

7 Kadijevic said: "It will not be seized."

8 And there's a handwritten note in the margin saying: "What have

9 you done to sort out Knin?"

10 And then you said this: "It has already been seized and is being

11 seized. Croatian villages are being burnt and cleansed. Territory is

12 being seized."

13 Kadijevic said: "Stipe, do you want war?"

14 You said: "I am trying to prevent war."

15 He said: "If you are so keen to prevent war, why do you not

16 accept the decisions?"

17 You replied: "I would have to give up part of Croatia."

18 Do you have any comment on that beyond perhaps acknowledging that

19 it sets the scene for the positions being taken?

20 A. Yes. This is quite clear. The army came in after acts of

21 provocation had been committed. The army took territory, and it was quite

22 clear that official Serbia was paying those who went into action

23 because -- well, this was done either by Serbia itself or through the

24 army, because you could not imagine a terrorist group getting hold of

25 tanks, getting hold of weapons that only the army had. So they were

Page 10536

1 acting in concert, the army, Serbia, and the so-called Krajina, which was

2 to perform that part of the job in establishing the borders -- the new

3 borders of a Greater Serbia.

4 Q. Thank you. Before we turn from this topic in general, just a

5 reminder. If we can show it on -- thank you to the usher for dealing with

6 those papers. That's the end of that exercise

7 Your Honours, that's the only exhibit exercise that's to be

8 time-consuming. We can just remind ourselves by looking at document C341,

9 which is tab 4 in the map binder.

10 Notwithstanding your efforts, Mr. Mesic, does this map reveal the

11 SAOs that were indeed declared by the Serbs even though they weren't able

12 to take territory exactly identical to that of the areas they declared?

13 A. Yes. This is the area that they controlled. This was not all

14 they wanted. They wanted more. But at that time, this was under the

15 control of the Krajina.

16 Q. Thank you very much. The next topic, and briefly. The role of

17 the SDS party in Croatia. What role did the party take in general terms?

18 What effects did its actions have on Serbs in Croatia, both radical and

19 less radical Serb inhabitants?

20 A. At the beginning when the SDS was being set up, it did not appear

21 that that party would become too radical. It was to struggle for cultural

22 autonomy. But as time went on, it became evident that this party was

23 being manipulated by Belgrade, which means the regime of Slobodan

24 Milosevic and he himself, and that they were doing only things that would

25 lead to the creation of a Greater Serbia, an ethnically pure territory

Page 10537

1 cleansed of the non-Serbian population.

2 In areas where the SDS took power, the population was completely

3 cleansed, that is, is the non-Serbian population. This was an

4 organisation that was to bring a dowry to Greater Serbia in the form of

5 new territories.

6 Q. Thank you. I'm going to turn now to look in a little more detail

7 at the Presidency of the Federal Republic, the SFRY. You've already told

8 us in general terms about the change in composition that led to a Serbian

9 bloc.

10 MR. NICE: Your Honours, the names in paragraph 8 have, I think

11 but I'm afraid I haven't checked, been given else where. They are in any

12 event a matter of public record and I don't propose to take time by simply

13 reading them into the record at the moment. They're there for

14 consideration if necessary.

15 Q. Can we go to paragraph 9? In accordance with the constitutional

16 system of a rotating Presidency where the President of the Presidency held

17 office for one year, did Borisav Jovic take that office on the 15th of

18 March of 1990 with you as vice-president?

19 A. Yes, that is correct. He did take over that office. But I did

20 not take over the office of vice-president immediately because the Federal

21 Assembly kept putting it off for a few months. They did not meet for a

22 few months so that I would assume that office as late as possible.

23 Q. So far as Borisav Jovic is concerned, to what degree could you

24 assess did he act independently of anybody else or in cooperation with

25 anybody else?

Page 10538

1 A. Borisav Jovic did not have any independence whatsoever.

2 Everything he did was done in agreement with Slobodan Milosevic. So even

3 at the sessions of the Presidency I would often joke when a decision would

4 have to be passed. Borisav Jovic would leave the session. He would

5 excuse himself, and he would walk out of the room. I would always say,

6 "Say hello to Milosevic." And when he came back, when he returned with

7 his instructions as to how he should act, when he would take a certain

8 position, then the members of the Serbian bloc would act accordingly.

9 When he would return to the room, I would again say to him, "Did you say

10 hello to Milosevic?" He did get a bit upset by it, but that's the way it

11 was.

12 Q. Did he ever challenge the suggestion that you were making that he

13 was acting at the accused's instructions?

14 A. No, he didn't. But my staff members told me that whenever he went

15 out, he always called Milosevic.

16 Q. Can we move forward in time to the 12th of March of 1991, coming

17 to the end of what would have been Jovic's year in office, and the

18 consideration of the declaration of the state of emergency. What was the

19 attitude of the Presidency members to this and of Kadijevic?

20 A. It was quite clear that the top echelons of the army together with

21 the Secretary for Defence, Veljko Kadijevic, had reached agreement with

22 Milosevic or, rather, the Serbian leadership to go for a state of

23 emergency. That meant that the army would be given the right to decide

24 freely and that the army would decide where it would operate.

25 At the session of the Presidency, this was not approved. The

Page 10539

1 Serbian bloc got all worked up. Some of them resigned, Borisav Jovic

2 among them, and the representative of Montenegro, Nenad Bucin.

3 Milosevic sent a message via television that Yugoslavia ceased to

4 function in this way, that they did not recognise any decisions made by

5 the Presidency and that Serbia was to establish its own armed forces.

6 That meant that Milosevic had announced a coup, that he announced that

7 Serbia would no longer be loyal to the legally elected Presidency. That

8 practically meant that they had opted for finally destroying Yugoslavia.

9 Why this action was given up on is something that I cannot figure

10 out until the present day.

11 After this announcement, I spoke on television myself immediately,

12 and I said that nothing special happened. Some members of the Presidency

13 resigned. The republics whose representatives had left would simply have

14 new candidates and would elect new members. As vice-president, I would

15 assume my role and the Presidency would go on functioning.

16 A few days later, Borisav Jovic came back as if nothing had

17 happened, because the parliament purportedly did not accept his

18 resignation, so we went on functioning.

19 Q. Just a couple of things we can do to flesh out this story,

20 Mr. Mesic. First of all, so far as Jovic's resignation is concerned and

21 the resignation of others, is there anything leading to you believe that

22 this was a spontaneous and genuine action or a planned action or are you

23 unable to express a view?

24 A. This could not have been a spontaneous act on his part at all. It

25 could not have involved any kind of moral approach. He had simply carried

Page 10540

1 out a task. It was obvious. When a state of emergency was not imposed,

2 Milosevic said that there was no Yugoslavia and that Serbia had to take

3 care of itself. So it was a scenario.

4 Q. The second thing we can do is to look at the statement that the

5 accused made on the 16th of March. This is the only other exhibit, as I

6 say, Your Honour, that will take some time, but I think it's worth looking

7 at in full. We have transcripts available of it. The witness has viewed

8 it recently. Tab 29 in volume 2. And if the booth would be good enough,

9 please, when we've all found our papers, to play the video.

10 I'm grateful to the usher. That's -- tab 29, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE MAY: In volume 2 of category 1?

12 MR. NICE: Yes. It's right at the end, Your Honour. Absolutely

13 the last document. There might have been an easier way to help you find

14 it.

15 [Videotape played]

16 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] "The last stage of its agony. The

17 Presidency of the SFRY has not been functioning for a long time now and

18 the illusion of the efforts made by the Presidency of Yugoslavia that are

19 actually not to be is one that has been dead as of last night. This is

20 not a step backwards. It's a step forwards because the truth is better

21 than illusions and deceits. Yugoslavia lost its Presidency but it did not

22 loose its workers, farmers, millions of its citizens, hard and honest

23 workers who worked hard and to took care of their families. Millions of

24 these honest and normal people will never give their country away.

25 "As far as Serbia is concerned, it has always been in favour of

Page 10541












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10542

1 Yugoslavia, and it never concealed that. Absolutely convinced and proud

2 Serbia publicly states this now as well. The blockade of the functions of

3 the Presidency of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia by those

4 who are disintegrating the country had brought this plan into its final

5 stage. This plan is being carried out to the detriment of the vital

6 interests of the Serb people both in Serbia and in Yugoslavia instead of a

7 democratic federation which is supposed to make it possible for the Serb

8 people together with the other people to live on a footing of equality and

9 together in one state. The forces of the anti-Serb coalition have formed

10 and are now making every effort to disintegrate Yugoslavia. Yugoslavia

11 does exist and it cannot be abolished by a one-sided act and a fait

12 accompli policy because realistic interests, achieved freedoms, democratic

13 institutions and the power of the people who live in it are guarantees of

14 its survival and successful development. By directly sabotaging its own

15 order on disarming paramilitary formations, the Presidency of the SFRY

16 enabled the creation of republican armies that pose an immediate threat to

17 the security of the country, all its citizens and especially the Republic

18 of Serbia and the Serb people outside of Serbia.

19 "The Presidency of Yugoslavia which is also the Supreme Command of

20 the armed forces of Yugoslavia, all the time since this order was passed,

21 there was blockade of functions of the Yugoslav People's Army which is

22 duty-bound and capable of protecting the people from war, regardless of

23 whether it's a civil war or a war of conquest. The Presidency of the SFRY

24 did everything in its power so that its own order would not be carried out

25 and so the secession of certain republics and parts of Yugoslavia would be

Page 10543

1 carried out by combining political manoeuvres, obstructions and armed

2 conflicts instead of in a peaceful way by respecting the rights of all

3 people to self-determination.

4 "By resigning from the Presidency of Yugoslavia and the Supreme

5 Command of the armed forces of Yugoslavia, Dr. Borisav Jovic refused to

6 accept the blockade and obstruction of the state leadership at a moment

7 that was crucial for the country. I believe that the resignation of

8 Borisav Jovic under the given circumstances represents an act of

9 responsibility of a responsible man who does not wish to take part in the

10 break-up of his country and it is an act of rebellion against obstruction

11 in the state leadership.

12 "In view of this situation, I wish to announce that the Republic

13 of Serbia will not recognise a single decision reached by the SFRY

14 Presidency because under existing circumstances, any such decision would

15 be illegitimate. As for the operation of such a Presidency that opted for

16 the disintegration of Yugoslavia, I personally will not accept any

17 participation in terms of authority that would be conducive from the

18 resignation of Borisav Jovic and would be vested in me personally. I

19 expect that the Yugoslav and international public will understand that not

20 a single patriot can accept the legitimacy of a collective head of state

21 operating against his country and the valid constitution. I demand that

22 the Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, in accordance with the acts of the

23 takeover of authority from the Kosovo Assembly reach a decision at its

24 first session on the release of Riza Sapundziju from the office of member

25 of the SFRY Presidency. Under existing circumstances attempts to set off

Page 10544

1 violence in Sandzak, Kosovo and Metohija, I have ordered a mobilisation of

2 reserve forces of the Republic of Serbia, MUP security forces and urgent

3 establishment of additional police forces of the Republic of Serbia. I

4 ask the government of the Republic of Serbia to carry out all preparations

5 for the establishment of additional forces in a size that would guarantee

6 the protection of the interests of the Republic of Serbia and the Serb

7 people. I call upon all political parties in this difficult situation to

8 establish full cooperation and also to disregard all their differences and

9 mutual disputes in the interest of Serbia. I think that despite the newly

10 created situation in Yugoslavia, there is no need to introduce a state of

11 emergency. All institutions of the system and the life in the Republic of

12 Serbia should continue normally. The citizens of Serbia should know that

13 the Republic of Serbia is able to provide full protection of the interests

14 of the Republic, all its citizens and the Serb people.

15 "The Republic of Serbia, the citizens of Serbia and the Serb

16 people will oppose all acts of disintegration of our country. Today we

17 need to be strong and determined to defend our country as we have done so

18 many times before. I'm convinced that the great freedom-loving spirit of

19 the Serb people will triumph over forces of the anti-Serb coalition

20 looming over Serbia and Yugoslavia that is our duty. Wisdom, courage and,

21 above all, patriotism of the citizens of the Republic of Serbia and

22 Yugoslavia are being tested now. As of this moment, we are taking that

23 test. I believe in the victory of peace in Yugoslavia. I believe in the

24 triumph of unity in Serbia and in the triumph of forces that will serenity

25 to people, notably to mothers and to our children.

Page 10545

1 "The Presidency --

2 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters note that the speed was

3 extreme.

4 MR. NICE: I'm grateful to the interpreters for dealing with that,

5 and I will --

6 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for Mr. Nice, please.

7 MR. NICE: I'm grateful for the interpreters for being able to

8 deal with that, and I will make sure that I move slowly over the next few

9 questions.

10 Q. Mr. Mesic, there is a lot one could ask about that speech, but

11 just a few questions to you about it. The setting is, as you've explained

12 to us, that the Presidency had declined to declare a state of emergency

13 which would have justified, in position of a state of war or something

14 like that, had been the resignations and then this speech on television.

15 I think you yourself spoke on television later although at the

16 moment we haven't been able to retrieve the footage. Is that correct, you

17 did speak?

18 A. That is correct.

19 Q. We can see that the speech starts off by talking about the Federal

20 Republic and the decisions that had been made or not made and about

21 Jovic's resignation being justified, and then it turns to Serbia and deals

22 specifically with Serbia and the Serbs. What is your comment on this

23 speech? Was it a straightforward speech? Did it have any subtext that

24 you could discern?

25 A. It is quite clear that this did not mean saving Yugoslavia. It

Page 10546

1 meant making operational the final dismemberment of Yugoslavia.

2 In his speech, Milosevic says that Serbia no longer accepts the

3 decisions of the Presidency. That is to say, that it does not accept the

4 constitution of Yugoslavia, the SFRY.

5 Also, he says that he would not accept the -- to be present in the

6 Presidency of Yugoslavia, to act ex officio there, although he is

7 duty-bound to do so if the members of the Presidency of Yugoslavia leaves.

8 That means that when Borisav Jovic left, before a new member is elected by

9 the Republic of Serbia, the president of the Republic of Serbia, according

10 to regulations, has to be a member of the Presidency. He has to attend

11 members -- meetings of the Presidency. But here he says that he is not

12 going to carry out the constitution, the constitution of the SFRY and all

13 the rest that he mentions, that forces would be mobilised. A threat was

14 made to the rest of the Yugoslavia.

15 In other words, he announced the disintegration of Yugoslavia.

16 And what was this all about? I shall present it quite briefly.

17 Slovenia and Croatia, assisted by Bosnia-Herzegovina and Macedonia, we

18 proposed to have a confederal system because the model of a federation as

19 the one that existed was could not be sustained. That is what I always

20 emphasised. The three cohesive factors were no longer there. And the

21 only possible thing was a confederacy. However, until the present day,

22 Serbia did not respond to our proposal to opt for a confederal solution,

23 to reach an agreement on this, to come to a consensus and not act through

24 the army and have solutions imposed on us. We could not accept Croatia,

25 Slovenia and other republics to be treated the way Milosevic treated

Page 10547

1 Vojvodina, Montenegro, and Kosovo. We could not accept that kind of

2 federation, and that is precisely what he wanted, a firm federation.

3 That is what I wish to say by way of an explanation. What was

4 said was that confederations could not exist. They even said there was a

5 confederacy in the United States of America. Well, true, but it did not

6 fall apart. But it did function, and it -- and there is proof of that.

7 It waged war for three years.

8 Q. One other detail I haven't covered so far within paragraph 10 of

9 the summary. When the Presidency declined to declare a state of

10 emergency, what, if anything, did Kadijevic say about what the Serbs would

11 do?

12 A. Well, at the session and what happened after that was that there

13 were grave tensions. Objections were being made to Bogic Bogicevic, that

14 he as a Serb, although he did not represent Serbia but Bosnia-Herzegovina,

15 that he was not voting as a Serb and he answered that he was a Serb but

16 that he was first and foremost a Bosnian and that he voted in the interest

17 of his republic. So the situation was really difficult. And I expected

18 Serbia or, rather, Milosevic, to make some even more heavy handed stepped,

19 and indeed he did.

20 Q. But in particular, did Kadijevic say anything material to the

21 Serbs' plans and anything about a Serb army?

22 A. Right at this moment, I cannot recall his words, but they were

23 quite in accordance with what Borisav Jovic had been saying.

24 Q. Can we look now, then, at an exhibit from the same period of

25 time. It's in volume I of part 1 and indeed all the references are to

Page 10548

1 part 1 of the document, Your Honour?

2 JUDGE MAY: Exhibit 328 for the record.

3 MR. NICE: Yes. 328. And it's tab 15, Exhibit number 2935. And

4 if we look at this, if you'd have the Croatian or B/C/S version,

5 Mr. Mesic, and if the usher could on this occasion put the front page on

6 the overhead projector.

7 You will see that this is a document from March 1991 coming from

8 the Secretary Anton Stari at the bottom, coming to you in your position

9 still as Vice-President of the Presidency. Just you in that position.

10 Enclosing a text of a statement by the Supreme Command Staff of the armed

11 forces for your information.

12 And then the next page, please, comes from or purports to come

13 from the Supreme Command Staff and says: "Enclosed find a statement by

14 the Supreme Command Staff," which is the result, and I'm going to skim

15 read it, "Result of a comprehensive evaluation of the situation arising

16 from the decision of the SFRJ Presidency not to accept the measures

17 proposed." It goes on to suggest those measures would prevent interethnic

18 armed conflicts.

19 Next paragraph. "When opting for the conditions measures

20 presented in the statement, it was borne in mind that the non-acceptance

21 of the proposal does not absolve the armed forces and Supreme Command

22 Staff, as an expert and professional body in the area of command and

23 control, of responsibility for the country's survival and security, which

24 are their constitutional duties and responsibilities and must be carried

25 out unconditionally."

Page 10549

1 Then says: "The Supreme Command Staff maintains that this should

2 be pointed out publicly." It says: "The combat readiness of some of the

3 People's Army units will be raised only depending on how the situation

4 develops."

5 And over the page, please, just the second paragraph of the

6 statement itself. It says: "The Yugoslav People's Army will steadfastly

7 guard the borders from all danger and will not allow them to be changed

8 until an agreement is reached and implemented in accordance with the

9 Constitution."

10 First of all, your comment on this body, the Supreme Command

11 Staff, and then secondly your comment on the document itself, Mr. Mesic.

12 A. The Supreme Command Staff is actually an illegal institution

13 because the Supreme Command Staff could only be established in times of

14 war or in a situation of an immediate threat of war. Since neither was

15 the case in Yugoslavia, the Supreme Command Staff could not be activated.

16 Throughout my work in the Presidency, I never managed to find out

17 who the members of this Supreme Command Staff were, but it is obvious that

18 the army says that it's going to raise combat readiness on the part of the

19 units and that this will be done exclusively in accordance with the

20 development of the situation. That is to say that they are going to

21 decide on their own where the army is going to act. According to the

22 constitution, they had no right to do so. So this is actually a military

23 coup, not work on the basis of the Yugoslav constitution that was still in

24 force.

25 JUDGE MAY: That's a convenient moment. Mr. Nice, you're on

Page 10550

1 course, I take it, to finish at least this morning.

2 MR. NICE: Certainly --

3 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Mr. Nice.

4 MR. NICE: The balance of the evidence will move more swiftly

5 because the exhibits will not take so long.

6 JUDGE MAY: Thank you.

7 Mr. Mesic, we're going to adjourn now for 20 minutes. Could you

8 please remember, and I must warn you as I warn all witnesses, not to speak

9 to anybody about your evidence until it's over and that does include the

10 members, of course, of the Prosecution team. Could you be back, please,

11 in 20 minutes.

12 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.

13 --- On resuming at 10.55 a.m.

14 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Nice.

15 MR. NICE:

16 Q. Mr. Mesic, following the resignation and reinstatement, as it

17 were, of Mr. Jovic, you say there were two members of the Presidency who

18 were replaced. Were the two who were replaced those who had been

19 supportive of Jovic or against him?

20 A. Unfortunately, I didn't hear your entire question.

21 Q. My apologies. Following the resignation and return of Jovic, you

22 tell us that two members of the Presidency were replaced. Were those who

23 were replaced or had those who were replaced been supportive of Jovic or

24 against him?

25 A. One was replaced, and that was Riza Sapunzhiu, the representative

Page 10551












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10552

1 of Kosovo. And Nenad Bucin tendered his resignation. He was the

2 representative of Montenegro. Riza Sapunzhiu thought he wouldn't be able

3 to be replaced by anybody because he was the Kosovo representative, and

4 the Kosovo Assembly was the one which Milosevic had disbanded. So he

5 counted on being able to vote according to his conscience. However,

6 Milosevic ordered, as could be seen from the excerpts shown, ordered the

7 Serb Assembly to replace Riza Sapunzhiu and this was carried out.

8 In the Yugoslav Presidency, Sejdo Bajramovic was sent there,

9 somebody whom nobody had elected in Kosovo.

10 Q. At about this time in 1991, just really yes or no if you can to

11 save time to this, about this time were some organs of the Presidency,

12 such bodies as the military department or the council for the protection

13 of constitutional order, functioning normally?

14 A. Yes, they were functioning normally as far as was possible,

15 because the Presidency was under a blockade and so were the bodies and

16 organs elected by that same Presidency.

17 Q. Did there come a time when they ceased to function normally or at

18 all?

19 A. Yes. We would receive minutes from the meetings of those bodies,

20 but if there was no quorum, then this would come in as merely an

21 expression of their views and opinions. But in the Presidency, we did

22 receive reports from them when there were enough members to ensure that a

23 meeting could be held.

24 Q. I move on to mid-July. Exhibit 328, volume 1, tab 2, Exhibit 152.

25 The B/C/S version for Mr. Mesic. The first page of the English version on

Page 10553

1 the overhead projector, please.

2 Two questions. The first relating to this document which we can

3 deal with shortly.

4 This is a document, as we can see at the bottom, signed by

5 yourself now in your position as president. You had been able to take up

6 the Presidency. We'll come to that perhaps in a little bit, but it's

7 signed by you in the position of president. And the decision we can see

8 further up the page, thank you very much, says in paragraph 1: "All armed

9 units in the SFRY territory, except JNA and regular peacetime police

10 units, that is the police, shall be demobilised by midnight of the 18th of

11 July."

12 And in the margin it says: "Mesic disagrees."

13 Can you just explain in a couple of sentences what was going on

14 here?

15 A. Well, here with this decision and request was to disarm the

16 National Guard, which was a regular composition of the Croatian police.

17 According to legal procedure and in a legal way, this portion of the

18 police force, like the Carabinieri, for instance, in Italy, that would be

19 comparable, was set up, this body, this organ. It was an executive organ

20 and it was called the Desbodna Nigarda [phoen] the National Guard Corps.

21 And by this decision they were supposed to be disarmed, because I asked

22 that illegal paramilitary formations be disarmed. Illegal ones, not the

23 legal ones.

24 I should just like to add that Croatia, for the legal organs and

25 the National Guard Corps asked for the purchase of weapons because what

Page 10554

1 they had were out-of-date. They came from a factory in Serbia, a factory

2 that manufactured these weapons via the Federal Secretariat for the

3 Interior. However, Croatia did not receive the okay for this. So it did

4 legally have the right to procure weapons elsewhere if these sorts of

5 weapons didn't exist in Yugoslavia. It was free to purchase them else

6 where.

7 Q. At about this time, was a decision made in relation to Slovenia

8 and the pulling out of the JNA from Slovenia?

9 A. Yes, that's right. That's what it was about. There was a

10 military action to establish a regime along the borders of Yugoslavia and

11 Austria, which meant that this was to be done in part of Slovenia.

12 Slovenia had established control at certain checkpoints, border

13 checkpoints, and in Belgrade a decision was taken to send a military

14 contingent to set up military control along the borders. That is not

15 something that the army -- comes under the army's competence, and the army

16 should not have entered into this action. It was pure provocation that

17 caused the 2.000 soldiers that had set out to establish control over the

18 borders was not able to do anything because the Territorial Defence of

19 Slovenia offered resistance. And I would say that this triggered off the

20 fact that the army withdrew from Slovenia later on. And I was at the sole

21 person at the meeting to vote against the proposal that the army withdraw

22 from Slovenia, because I lay down conditions and said that if the Yugoslav

23 People's Army were to withdraw both from Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina

24 and other republics, then I would agree, but I would not agree that it

25 pull out of Slovenia alone. And of course the army and Milosevic had no

Page 10555

1 intention of following that proposal.

2 Q. And how do you regard or how did you regard that withdrawal of

3 troops from Slovenia in connection with the disintegration of Yugoslavia

4 more generally?

5 A. It was quite clear to me that the withdrawal of the army from

6 Slovenia meant the disappearance of Yugoslavia itself. And this was the

7 further opralisation [as interpreted] of the creation of a Greater Serbia.

8 This was repeated again and again. The people who wanted Yugoslavia to

9 remain were in favour of this, and the Yugoslav army supported it.

10 Q. Thank you. In summary, paragraph 13 but briefly. We are still

11 looking at particular acts and characteristics of the Presidency really

12 itself.

13 There came a time when the phrase "Rump Presidency" came to be

14 used. When did that first come to be used?

15 A. The Yugoslav army had blocked the roads in Croatia. It had

16 blocked the airports, and I was not able to reach Belgrade. However, I

17 was ready to convene a Presidency meeting at some other spot, some other

18 venue, which was accessible to all the other Presidency members. And I

19 considered that the best possible venue for that would be Brioni, the

20 Brioni islands. And I convened a meeting on Brioni. However, the Serbian

21 bloc resisted the idea and did not turn up. Nobody from that bloc came.

22 And that is when we came to use a constitutional option whereby the

23 president is not able to convene a Presidency meeting. This is then done

24 by the vice-president. However, the Presidency could have convened a

25 meeting, that is to say I myself could have convened a meeting but not in

Page 10556

1 Belgrade as the venue.

2 So this was an attempt to implement and affect a state coup, one

3 which had already been carried out, in fact. But now what they were

4 trying to do was to finish it off and that this Rump Presidency would be

5 composed of the Serb block where Branko Kostic represented Montenegro and

6 took over the functions of the vice-president, acting as the presiding

7 officer and rendered decisions that which completely illegal and

8 illegitimate. In other words, what they were introducing at that point

9 was a state of emergency, in fact.

10 Q. And roughly when did the Rump Presidency take hold? Again we'll

11 look at this a little bit more when we look at what happened to your

12 Presidency in detail, but when did the Rump Presidency take hold?

13 A. It took hold approximately a month after the fact that nobody had

14 responded to my invitation to attend the Brioni Presidency meeting.

15 Q. Along the way, because this is all in 1991 and we're passing

16 through the summer of 1991, did the Croatian government express any views

17 about the activation of the Supreme Command headquarters, the body you

18 referred to not so very long ago?

19 A. Yes. Both the government and the president of Croatia,

20 Dr. Tudjman, reacted, and they did not accept the realisation of that

21 particular plan, that is to say that the Supreme Command Headquarters be

22 legalised because the institution itself was illegal, unlawful.

23 Q. Were protests or records of their position made in some way?

24 A. Yes, that's right. It was recorded, and I think that those

25 documents can be accessed.

Page 10557

1 Q. Still in the summer of 1991, did you have an exchange with

2 Kadijevic about his attitude towards the accused?

3 A. It is interesting to note that I as the President of the

4 Presidency of the SFRY was never able to get General Kadijevic as the

5 Defence Minister to come to my cabinet, to my office, and have talks with

6 me. The only time we met would be at Presidency meetings. However, I did

7 wish the problems to be solved in a political fashion and wanted to

8 exclude the army from the political resolution and denouement of the

9 crisis that Yugoslavia was faced with. And so I said that I would be

10 coming to the cabinet of the Ministry of Defence, that is to say General

11 Kadijevic, and he did receive me on several occasions in his cabinet.

12 When I asked him why he was doing what he was doing to the

13 advantage of Milosevic and his plans, why he was furthering them, he said

14 that he cannot discuss this with anyone else in Serbia because all of them

15 were worse than Milosevic. And what I in fact said to him then was that

16 the army was working to promote Slobodan Milosevic's plans, that is, to

17 plot the borders of a greater Serbia. And he said expressly, "While I am

18 alive, the Yugoslav army will protect Yugoslavia." And I said to him,

19 "Who knows whether you will be alive because a Greater Serbia is being

20 formed and a Greater Serbia does not need the Yugoslav army. It is being

21 Serbicised, and it will soon be the Serb army and you won't represent one

22 single thing in that army. You will represent nothing. "

23 Q. Did he challenge your characterisation of what was being done at

24 that time?

25 A. No. He was persistent in wishing to convince me that the army was

Page 10558

1 in fact separating the warring parties. That quite simply was not true.

2 What the army was doing was supplying, arming, and paying all those who

3 were attacking the institutions of Croatian power and authority.

4 Q. You were now president. We'll catch the -- we'll get the times of

5 your Presidency shortly, but you were now president of the Presidency.

6 Who or what was Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces under the

7 constitution?

8 A. Under the constitution, the Supreme Commander of the armed forces

9 was the Presidency of Yugoslavia, and the president of the Presidency was

10 the personification of that office.

11 Q. How did Kadijevic react to any attempts that you made as president

12 of that Presidency to intervene in the activities of the JNA?

13 A. Well, when I persistently called for the withdrawal of the army to

14 barracks, General Adzic as the head of the General Staff of the Yugoslav

15 army, as well as Minister Kadijevic, did not accept this, nor did they

16 take it into account, take much account of it. What they were doing was

17 working along Slobodan Milosevic's arms, because the army kept becoming

18 the Serbian army more and more. The Slovenians had stepped down, the

19 Albanians had stepped down, the Bosniaks had stepped down. They had left.

20 So at all practical intents and purposes it was a Serbian army under the

21 name and guise of the Yugoslav army, whereas it was an army that was loyal

22 exclusively to Slobodan Milosevic until the very end.

23 Q. Let's now turn to paragraph 18 to a particular incident which

24 happened a little earlier. The meeting at Karadjordjevo. You weren't

25 present at that meeting. Did you have any knowledge of its being about to

Page 10559

1 happen before it happened?

2 A. Well, yes. As the organs of the Krajina, as it was called,

3 continued their provocations and the representatives of the Yugoslav army,

4 those from the KOS, the counter intelligence service, took part in all

5 these provocations and in fact prepared, laid the ground for the army's

6 arrival. I told Borislav Jovic, I said to him, "Why are they doing this?

7 Why are they arming the Serbs? Because there'll be an immanent

8 catastrophe. And if a real full-fledged war breaks out, then the 10 per

9 cent of Serbs cannot stand up to the rest of Croatia."

10 So what I said to him was you were cutting your nose to spite your

11 face and working towards the disadvantage of your compatriots in Croatia.

12 Borislav Jovic said to me, "We're not interested in Croatia.

13 We're not interested in the Serbs in Croatia. What we are interested in

14 is Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is to say the 66 per cent of

15 Bosnia-Herzegovina which was Serb land. It was Serb land and it will

16 remain Serb land."

17 Now, I said, "If you're not interested in Croatian territory or

18 the Serbs in Croatia as Croatian citizens, then let's sit down to the

19 negotiating table and identify the problems and solve them politically.

20 Are you in favour," I said, "That you, Tudjman, and Slobodan Milosevic sit

21 down to the negotiating table to see what we're up against and let the

22 problem of Bosnia be solved in the United Nations? Because Bosnia and

23 Herzegovina is part, a constitutive element of the federation. " He said,

24 "I agree, but I have to ask Milosevic."

25 Some time passed and he informed me that Milosevic agreed to this

Page 10560

1 but he added that anywhere in the country or outside the country that we

2 decide to hold this meeting he would come there. I went to Zagreb,

3 conveyed this message to President Tudjman, and he too agreed that the

4 four of us meet.

5 Now, as the meeting did not actually take place because Tudjman

6 said to me, "I'll tell you when a good time for that is so you can relay

7 this to the two in Belgrade," but Tudjman never called me and the meeting

8 never came about, never materialised. But when I visited Zagreb, we did

9 have a meeting in the members of the top political echelon and Tudjman

10 said he was going to a meeting in Karadjordjevo because he wished to have

11 a tete-a-tete meeting with Milosevic to hear what the other side wanted.

12 So Tudjman didn't take me there, and Milosevic didn't take Borislav Jovic

13 there. So the two of them met. Now, what they caused there is something

14 that I cannot say with any degree of certainty, but I can say with

15 certainty what Tudjman conveyed to us when he came back from

16 Karadjordjevo, because we were waiting for him the entire day.

17 Let me also emphasise one more point. Up until Karadjordjevo,

18 Tudjman had always been in favour of Bosnia and Herzegovina remaining one

19 entity. That was his involvement. That was his position. That was what

20 he wanted to do for Bosnia-Herzegovina. Those were his views beforehand.

21 But after that particular meeting, he changed his opinion. He had a whole

22 about turn in his opinion. And quite obviously Milosevic convinced him

23 that Bosnia could be divided up. And Tudjman told us we would be getting

24 Cazin Kladusa or, rather, the Banovina borders dating back to 1938, plus

25 Cazin, Kladusa, and Bihac. And he said Milosevic had hold him, "Franjo,

Page 10561












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10562

1 you take Cazin, Kladusa and Bihac. That is what is called the Turkish

2 Croatia. I don't need that. So you can have that." And then the -- this

3 was put into practice. Fikret Abdic then proclaimed Western Bosnia as an

4 autonomous region. We saw that on that level something was quite

5 obviously being done.

6 Q. Before I move from Karadjordjevo, how soon in the press and the

7 media was there ever any discussion of what may have happened there?

8 A. Well, for quite some time the public did not know what was

9 discussed in Karadjordjevo, but it is quite clear -- it was quite clear

10 from what was happening in the field, on the ground, in Bosnia-Herzegovina

11 later on the Republika Srpska was proclaimed et cetera, and on the other

12 side the Croats proclaimed Herceg-Bosna. So that allowed one to conclude

13 that what was in fact in play was the carving up of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

14 Q. Yes. But --

15 A. Although at the beginning --

16 Q. I just wanted to check with you really. When, a date will do

17 roughly, when was the meeting at Karadjordjevo and what may have been

18 discussed there first in the public domain, in newspapers or discussed on

19 television, something of that sort? How long afterwards?

20 A. The meeting was held at the end of March 1991, and people began to

21 talk about this quite some time later, perhaps one or one and a half years

22 later.

23 Q. Right. And then it was talked about publicly. Was there ever any

24 challenge or denial by the accused at that sort of time to the suggestion

25 that there had been this sort of discussion at Karadjordjevo?

Page 10563

1 A. Well, he always denied, at least as far as I was able to read,

2 that any talks had taken place in Karadjordjevo with respect to the

3 division of Bosnia, the carving up of Bosnia. However, the situation on

4 the ground was quite different. It indicated that the talks were held.

5 And proof of this, evidence of this, is that the commission dealing with

6 borders and new maps and plotting the new architecture of the entire

7 region of the former Yugoslavia, which means Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina,

8 that they were elaborated because Smilja Abromov on behalf of Milosevic,

9 came to Zagreb during the war and the representatives of Croatia would go

10 to Belgrade. So that was covert meetings, secret meetings, but it did

11 leak out into the public that these commissions were in fact functioning

12 and that these discussions were being held both in Belgrade and Zagreb.

13 Some members of that commission tendered their resignations who did not

14 agree to what was being said at these negotiations, et cetera.

15 Q. You've covered, therefore, the Presidency and some of its actions.

16 We'll look in due course at the Rump Presidency. We will now look just in

17 a little more detail at your Presidency of that Presidency, your role as

18 president. Much of this we've covered already.

19 You were entitled to take office on what date in 1991, if you can

20 remember?

21 A. On the 15th of May, 1991.

22 Q. In fact, as a result of things that were done, you were only able

23 to take up office when?

24 A. Only two months later, because the Serbian bloc prevented my

25 election. That is to say in the rules of procedure, it was stipulated

Page 10564

1 that the president should be elected, but the entire mechanism was

2 established in such a way as to render this mere form. However, the

3 mechanism was such that nobody else could have been elected apart from the

4 person designated by the Republic and the persons whose term it was to be

5 both president and vice-president. So this was an automatic procedure.

6 But despite that, the Serbian bloc blocked it.

7 Q. You eventually took up office. You stayed as president - this is

8 a matter of public record, I think - until the 5th of December, 1991,

9 office which would have you much of your time in Belgrade. In fact, you

10 left Belgrade part way through this term of office on what date, please,

11 Mr. Mesic?

12 A. It was in the middle of September, because there was no

13 possibility for the normal functioning -- for me to function normally in

14 Belgrade after that.

15 Q. Did you have any security concerns for yourself at that stage or

16 not?

17 A. Yes. I was afraid for my own safety. But I must say that there

18 were professionals working in the security service in Belgrade, and the

19 ones who came from Zagreb too. So that I was relatively safe and secure.

20 But I was also sure that they wouldn't kill me because then they would

21 have to recognise that they had effected a coup, coup d'etat so that was

22 the one of the reasons why I felt safe as well.

23 Q. You've already told us a little of your efforts to hold active

24 meetings of the Presidency away from Belgrade. Can we just look at a

25 couple of documents which may exemplify what was happening. In Exhibit

Page 10565

1 328, volume 2, tab 20, document 3001, and if the usher would -- thank you

2 very much -- distribute and just place the English version on the overhead

3 projector to save time.

4 By -- this is a document of October 1991, and we can see at its

5 foot that it comes from that man Anton Stari who I said we'd refer to

6 again, the General secretary. And it comes from the Presidency. And the

7 document is to this effect, that there was a session on the 1st of

8 October, and it then says: "We hereby inform you that, pursuant to

9 Articles 3 and 25 of the rules of procedure of the Presidency of the SFRY,

10 the Vice-President Dr. Kostic has called the 144th session for the 2nd of

11 October." The agenda is said to be certain issues for the domain of

12 national defence. It then says, "Members of the Supreme Command Staff,"

13 that body again, "will participate in the session," and so on.

14 Your comments on this document, please, which was forwarded to you

15 I think by Anton Stari.

16 A. I received this invitation to this session only so that it would

17 appear to be legitimate and legal. In fact, what they were doing was what

18 I explained before. They had performed a coup d'etat, and it was the

19 Serbian bloc that was in control of the situation. I received this

20 invitation only for form's sake. It is stated here that the staff of the

21 Supreme Command would be present. This was an illegal institution, and

22 they were not supposed to attend a session of this kind.

23 Q. So is this now, then, the Rump Presidency in operation or not?

24 A. Yes. This is the Rump Presidency. And their decisions could not

25 be binding upon anyone, because the Rump Presidency did not have a quorum.

Page 10566

1 So any decision made by them could not be binding upon anyone, either in

2 Croatia or in the whole of Yugoslavia.

3 Q. The next exhibit, please.

4 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Mesic, if you could note the handwritten margin

5 on the top left side. Can you tell us whose handwriting this is?

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The session was concluded at 17

7 hours, sent later. I think this is the handwriting of Anton Stari, but I

8 can't be certain.

9 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. But the handwritten margin that we saw

10 before, you disagreed to some decision. Was that yours? It was tab -- I

11 don't remember the tab. In the document.

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

13 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I apologise. This could also

15 be a note made by my advisor, or it could have been made by Anton Stari.

16 Very often I had a separate and dissenting opinion to some conclusions.

17 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Thank you.

18 MR. NICE:

19 Q. The next exhibit then, Exhibit 328, tab 23, documents C3204. A

20 couple of days later, the 3rd of October. I beg your pardon. Not a

21 couple of days later.

22 The document actually reads 1993, but I think that must be an

23 error. It's 1991. And we can see there from the body of the document.

24 So perhaps our page could be amended.

25 This again comes from Anton Stari to yourself as president of the

Page 10567

1 Presidency. It deals with the session held on the 3rd of October of 1991

2 where the Presidency adopted the decision on work and method of making

3 decisions of the Presidency at the time of an immediate threat of war.

4 It goes on to say: "With regard to the implementation of this

5 decision, it was concluded that all members of the Presidency should be

6 informed that the Presidency will be in continuous session in Belgrade for

7 the period of the immediate threat of war. As a result, it is imperative

8 that members of the Presidency be present in Belgrade if possible or at a

9 distance which would enable work to commence within two hours of convening

10 the session.

11 "Given the above, it's necessary to take measures through your

12 office and the head of Protocol for you to come to -- come or be taken to

13 Belgrade."

14 The next sentence: "It was also concluded at the session that

15 those Presidency members who are absent should be informed of this

16 decision upon their arrival in Belgrade as the decision cannot be sent by

17 fax owing to its level of secrecy."

18 You received this at some stage from Anton Stari. Your other

19 comments on this document, please, Mr. Mesic.

20 A. This is only proof that the whole decision was made in order to

21 exclude representatives of Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and

22 Macedonia from the work of this body. The representative of Bosnia and

23 Herzegovina happened to be in Belgrade at the time, so he was able to

24 attend. But Slovenia and Croatia could not be represented. There was no

25 way they could be represented. And this was in fact the intention.

Page 10568

1 The Rump Presidency could not make decisions that would be binding

2 upon anyone.

3 Q. You've already explained your efforts to convene meetings else

4 where. Do you say that it would have been possible for the whole

5 Presidency to meet in other places such as the islands of -- or the island

6 of Brioni?

7 A. Everybody could have come to Brioni.

8 Q. Let's go back just a few days and back in the bundle to Exhibit

9 328, tab 19, document C2998. See how you were at the time approaching

10 this problem.

11 In this communication of the 30th of September signed by yourself

12 to Mr. Anton Stari, that General Secretary who was communicating with you

13 from time to time, you said as follows: "In connection with the unlawful

14 and illegal convening of a session of the Presidency of the SFRY, I ask

15 you to inform all those summoned of my opposition.

16 "I am prepared to call a session of the Presidency in any place on

17 condition that it is reachable by transport.

18 "Please inform the members of the Presidency that the president is

19 not prevented from performing his duties for a long time if the JNA

20 prevents his coming to Belgrade.

21 "Participation in the unlawful session of the Presidency shall be

22 considered adherence to a military putsch."

23 What impediments were there in the way of your travelling to

24 Belgrade or elsewhere in Serbia?

25 A. The Yugoslav army had blocked all roads and all airports so that I

Page 10569

1 was unable to go from Zagreb to Belgrade. I could, however, have gone to

2 Brioni because Brioni was accessible to me. These islands were also

3 accessible to everyone else.

4 Q. Did you ever get any reaction from the Rump Presidency, as they

5 were to be described, to the suggestion that these sessions of the

6 Presidency were joining or belonging to a military putsch?

7 A. I did not hear their comments, but it was quite obvious that the

8 Rump Presidency was implementing the decisions of Slobodan Milosevic and

9 Slobodan Milosevic only.

10 Q. In which case at paragraph 22 of the summary, let's look at just a

11 little bit more about the Rump Presidency.

12 Did you learn -- did you learn of changes in the Presidency rules

13 and procedures purported to be made by this Serbian bloc or Rump

14 Presidency?

15 A. Yes, I did, because my advisor was in Belgrade, and he kept me

16 informed of all developments and everything that was done by the Rump

17 Presidency including the rules of procedure. This was simply a

18 continuation of what the army had started in agreement with Slobodan

19 Milosevic, that is, the implementation of a coup d'etat.

20 Q. Can we now turn to Exhibit 328, volume 1, tab 12, Exhibit C2911.

21 I'm sorry. Not Exhibit C2911, document C2911.

22 This is a document that you saw at the time, which you've been

23 shown again recently in preparation for giving evidence here, being a

24 proposal, I think undated, for amendments of the rules of procedure of the

25 Presidency of the SFRY.

Page 10570

1 A. Yes. This is correct. As can be seen from this, all this was

2 done in order to exclude the president from the work of the Presidency.

3 Q. Just dealing with the document itself and looking at the version

4 you have in your hands and seeing that it has some lines on it and the

5 word STR 22 or the letters STR 22, meaning page, I think, is that writing

6 you recognise or not?

7 A. It is the same handwriting, page 22. This is part of a larger

8 text.

9 Q. Thank you. This text or this part of the larger text suggests

10 that after paragraph 2 of Article 25 a new paragraph should be added to

11 the effect that if the President of the Presidency does not call a session

12 within a required or proposed period, the vice-president shall convene a

13 session.

14 The next paragraph says: If even the vice-president doesn't

15 convene a session, then the member of the Presidency who requested it may

16 consult other members about the holding of a session, and if there's a

17 majority of members of the Presidency agree, then he shall convene a

18 session of the Presidency at which he shall preside.

19 Do you have any comments on those changes or proposed changes in

20 the constitution and what they were designed to achieve?

21 A. These are changes in the rules of procedure of the Presidency of

22 the SFRY, and obviously the only intention was to have the first part

23 implemented. The rest is simply there for show, to make it appear that

24 somebody else could also convene a session of the Presidency. However,

25 this never happened, nor did they ever really consider it happening.

Page 10571












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10572

1 Q. Staying with the period of time, the autumn and coming winter of

2 1991 but now dealing with matters more generally of finance, can you help

3 us, please, with what you knew of the financing of the JNA? From what

4 budget did it come, and who had control over that budget?

5 First of all, how was it financed, the JNA?

6 A. The JNA was financed from the federal budget. This was from the

7 revenue of the federation. The original revenue of the federation.

8 Croatia and other republics were against this because they wanted to keep

9 the original revenue within the republics.

10 The other part of the financing of the JNA came from contributions

11 by the republics while the third part came from an economic system that

12 was owned by the army. The army had its own companies and farms, and

13 these were located on territories all over the former Yugoslavia.

14 Q. Had there been a time when Croatia's contributions to the

15 republican budget for the purposes of the JNA ceased?

16 A. Croatia made this decision at a point in time when the army was in

17 the service of the aggressors, when it was working on creating a Greater

18 Serbia, and so Croatia could no longer continue paying this army to its

19 own detriment.

20 Q. Did that lead to the need for loans for financing the army, and if

21 so, where did those loans come from?

22 A. The army was certainly in a difficult financial situation. It

23 favoured Slobodan Milosevic and Greater Serbia because it expected to find

24 in them a sponsor that would make the continued existence of the army

25 possible, because the republics would no longer finance such a large and

Page 10573

1 unwieldy army. They wanted to create a situation in which they could

2 obtain loans, and this was in fact done. They -- it was financed from the

3 primary issue of money and also from loans abroad and with the national

4 bank.

5 Q. So far the National Bank of Yugoslavia is concerned, who had to

6 approve loans for the purposes of the JNA?

7 A. The counsel of governors of the national bank had to do that.

8 Q. By the time that we are dealing with, the middle of 1991 or late

9 in 1991, were Croatian representatives still on the board of governors or

10 not?

11 A. No. Croatia no longer had its representative there.

12 Q. Who had control over that board of governors whose approval was

13 required to lend money for the purposes of the JNA?

14 A. It was Slobodan Milosevic who controlled the national bank and its

15 functioning, just as he had control over the JNA.

16 Q. Can you help us, Mr. Mesic, with what in mid-1991 were the

17 currency -- the foreign currency reserves in the national bank? What

18 order were they?

19 A. I have two different pieces of information. One was that there

20 were $8 billion of currency reserves. The other was that there were $12

21 billion of foreign currency reserves. And then I received yet another

22 piece of information that this amount was $10 billion. So the truth might

23 be somewhere in the middle, in between.

24 Q. By whom had that money been provided?

25 A. The foreign currency reserves were abroad. They were in the

Page 10574

1 national bank, and it was the Federation or the Federal Executive Council

2 and the Ministry of Finance that had access to these funds. Part of these

3 funds were being spent in such a way that we in the Presidency had no

4 control over this. I have to say that these were not simply funds from

5 the budget, funds belonging to the state but also parastate institutions

6 such as the Chamber of Commerce and other institutions.

7 Q. Who'd actually provided the money? And where did it come from?

8 Was it a taxation, federal taxation? Or had it come the states or the

9 autonomous regions or where?

10 A. The largest part of these funds came from Croatia, because this

11 was hard currency, and from tourism. And Croatia was the republic that

12 had the most tourism.

13 Q. And for what was that money used in the war or after the war?

14 A. It could only have been used to wage the war and to support the

15 regime of Slobodan Milosevic.

16 Q. And do you know, just dealing with one particular item of

17 expenditure, how the salaries of armies of the Republika Srpska Krajina or

18 the Republika Srpska were paid?

19 A. In view of the fact that the officers, the non-commissioned

20 officers and many of the soldiers came from the JNA, it was the JNA that

21 paid them. They continued to pay them even after the army of the

22 so-called Krajina no longer existed, because these people went to the

23 territory of Serbia and they were supported later on also. It was

24 official Serbia that gave its blessing to all this.

25 Q. We now look at one contemporaneous document dealing with money,

Page 10575

1 Exhibit 328, volume 1, tab 1, document C78. This is dated, as we can see,

2 the end of September 1991. So you've gone to Zagreb, are no longer in a

3 position to go to Belgrade. It comes again from Stari. It goes to

4 yourself and to other members of the Presidency and sets out item 3 of the

5 order of business for the session to be called on the 1st of October. It

6 deals with the proposal of the Federal Executive Council, that the

7 Presidency proposed to the Assembly the law on the sources of funds for

8 financing certain national defence requirements.

9 "Further to this, the Federal Secretariat for National Defence has

10 proposed a new paragraph or law," and then this quotation, the proposed

11 amendment.

12 "Until the determination of funds within the meaning of paragraph

13 2 of this Article, the National Bank of Yugoslavia may make an advance

14 payment to the Federation to finance the Yugoslav People's Army."

15 So that's the bank, that you say, was in the control of the

16 accused. Is that right, Mr. Mesic?

17 A. Correct.

18 Q. We can now go to volume 2 of Exhibit 328, tab 28. At the same

19 time, now a document of the 1st of October. I shan't go through all of

20 this document to save time. And you can see at its end that this is

21 signed by the Vice-President, Dr. Kostic, and is the draft minutes of a

22 meeting -- of the meeting that was held.

23 If the usher would be good enough -- I'm sorry not to have

24 provided, having more preparation, I think it's as to page -- well, the

25 page numbers are on the bottom. Page 7, please.

Page 10576

1 Which in the original, Mr. Mesic, is page 5 for yourself. This

2 record of the meeting records as follows, item 3, just a little higher up.

3 Thank you. "At the proposal of the Federal Executive Council, the

4 Presidency discussed the draft law on sources of funds for financing

5 certain national defence needs in 1991."

6 And then we see that the Presidency endorsed the draft law with a

7 proviso to the effect that until funds are approved in the manner

8 described in paragraph 2 of this Article, the national bank may make

9 advance payments to the Federation.

10 And then it's reported that the Presidency members Tupurkovski and

11 Bogicevic asked to delay their positions on the draft law until the next

12 day pending consultation was their republics. Presidency member

13 Dr. Tupurkovski reported he was in agreement while Presidency member

14 Bogicevic still not reported his position.

15 Does it appear that the change, Mr. Mesic, was indeed effected or

16 purported to be effected?

17 A. This is in fact proof that the war was financed through the

18 national bank. I'm referring to the war waged by the Yugoslav army in

19 order to create a Greater Serbia.

20 Q. Very well. Now, with these activities going on, can we look,

21 please, at what reaction there was? Can we come back, please, I'm afraid

22 to volume 1, tab 6. That's volume 1 of Exhibit 328, tab 6, document C251.

23 This is -- although the date is illegible, a press communique that

24 may relate. Just see what it says in the first two paragraphs.

25 It sets out at a session of the Presidency chaired by Kostic,

Page 10577

1 while setting the agenda it was noted that, and then there's some

2 illegible words, the situation in the country to be discussed in its

3 entirety with emphasis on Bosnia and Herzegovina between the -- because

4 the top representatives of this republic were absent due to their

5 expectations that the Presidency would accept their proposal to hold the

6 session on this matter in Sarajevo. Member of the Presidency, Bogicevic,

7 proposed that the session of the Presidency on the situation in this

8 republic be held in Sarajevo which was not accepted. It was concluded

9 that the political and security situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina should

10 be discussed in conjunction with the leadership of this republic as soon

11 as possible.

12 And then this: "The Presidency was informed by the relevant

13 federal departments that the political and security situation in the

14 country was extremely difficult and dramatic and there was a danger of

15 full-scale civil war."

16 If we can go to the next page just for one paragraph, please. In

17 the middle of the page.

18 "Additionally the Presidency has established that the work of

19 almost all federal agencies is blocked as well. The work of the Assembly

20 has been rendered impossible." And then this says this: "The Presidency

21 has decided to initiate the holding of expanded sessions with the most

22 responsible federal and republican leaders to discuss the conditions for a

23 cease-fire agreement, the functioning of federal agencies, initiatives

24 taken to date on the future of Yugoslavia, and the results to date of the

25 work on the international conference."

Page 10578

1 Can you help us at all with the probable date of this communique,

2 which I think itself is not dated, and then give us your comments on the

3 passages I've just read out?

4 A. I believe that this was also held in October, the month of

5 October, judging by the contents.

6 Q. Your observations, if any, on the passages that I've read insofar

7 as they don't simply speak for themselves?

8 A. Oh, they do speak for themselves. There is no need to make any


10 Q. Then can we move to the next document which is at tab 7 in part 1

11 of Exhibit 328, document C253. The same approximate time but this one

12 dated the 1st of October.

13 Now, is this a document you've seen before coming to look at

14 documents before giving evidence or not?

15 A. Yes, I did see it.

16 Q. We can see it's a report by the armed forces of the high command

17 staff, Belgrade, the 1st of October, where the report is issued to

18 yourself. No, I beg your pardon. To the president of the Republic of

19 Croatia and to various others.

20 It suggests that authorities and armed formations of the Republic

21 of Croatia are completely ignoring all accomplished cease-fire agreements,

22 truces and so on.

23 Next paragraph: "Instead of being cancelled, blockade of military

24 units is getting stronger. The army is being deprived of food and water."

25 Asserts that cold-blooded crimes are being committed on JNA members of

Page 10579

1 which domestic and world public were acquainted, there being maltreatment

2 and harassment which could not be tolerated.

3 There is then a warning. And we can see on the signature block it

4 comes from the armed forces high command staff. But the warning is to

5 this effect: "For every attacked and posed facility owned by the Yugoslav

6 People's Army, we will immediately destroy one facility that has vital

7 importance for the Republic of Croatia.

8 "For every attacked and possessed garrison, we will destroy vital

9 facility in the town where the garrison is located. At the same time,

10 this is a warning to civilians to retreat from these places."

11 That's all I need read. The rest can be read. What do you say on

12 this document, its purpose and effect on the 1st of October of 1991,

13 Mr. Mesic?

14 A. At any rate, this is not a warning. This is an ultimatum. It

15 calls for retaliation for every destroyed facility, facility -- or,

16 rather, for every destroyed or taken over facility of the Yugoslav

17 People's Army, a facility that is of vital importance of Croatia or for

18 the town where the mentioned garrison is will be destroyed. That is quite

19 clear. It is an ultimatum and the realisation of the military coup that

20 was under way.

21 Q. We see that it's addressed to the president of Croatia, President

22 Tudjman as it then was, and of course we know and are going to hear

23 elsewhere of what happened on the State of Croatia. Did President Tudjman

24 complain about what was happening on his territory or on your territory at

25 that time?

Page 10580

1 A. The Croatian government and the president of Croatia took every

2 measure to make all parties concerned aware of what is going on and where

3 the Yugoslav army is involved. We see this ultimatum, and we see that it

4 was put forth by the Supreme Command Staff. I emphasise yet again that

5 this is an illegal institution and that this was part of the plan and

6 scenario that came from the staff of Slobodan Milosevic.

7 Q. Can we now turn, and I'm sorry, it involves changing to volume 2

8 of 328, to your own reaction. And it's tab 21. The document C3009, which

9 was exhibited as Exhibit 106 in Dokmanovic.

10 I'd ask the witness to look at it, notwithstanding that, today.

11 This is a document signed by yourself to the Presidency in Belgrade

12 recording that you've been given an invitation to the 144th session of the

13 Presidency called illegally, as you set out or assert. And you then set

14 out the vice-president with members of the Serbian bloc is involved in a

15 military putsch and is trying to obtain intentionally by unlawful

16 manipulation to get the Presidency to pass a decision legalising unlawful

17 and unconstitutional decisions.

18 You expressed surprise that Bogicevic and Tupurkovski have joined

19 the putsch, but you end your letter in this way: "I must once more that

20 the JNA which seeks to have its financing put on the agenda is preventing

21 by means of tanks on the highway and a blockade of air traffic, the legal

22 and legitimate Presidency of the Presidency," and that is yourself, "from

23 attending the sessions."

24 Did you sent that protest or that complaint?

25 A. That is correct. I emphasised in this letter what this was all

Page 10581












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10582

1 about but I also received a telephone call from Bogic Bogicevic who said

2 me that he decided not to go along with the military coup, that he only

3 attended a session of the Presidency once to see what it was all about,

4 but he did not vote.

5 As for Vasil Tupurkovski, I wrote a letter to Gligorov, President

6 of Macedonia asking him whether the fact that Vasil Tupurkovski came meant

7 that he was joining in the military coup. And Kira informed me that Vasil

8 Tupurkovski would no longer take part in the Presidency meetings.

9 Q. Now, you've been telling us what your views were, what your

10 current understanding of the role of the accused is. Let's now look at

11 the next document which is tab 22 of volume 2 of Exhibit 328, document

12 C3017 for your contemporaneous expressions of opinion, this document being

13 108 in Dokmanovic.

14 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Nice, we must get this in some sort of regular

15 fashion. Are you asking for the Dokmanovic package to be also exhibited?

16 MR. NICE: I think it's better to do that in case there are some

17 additional exhibits that we haven't looked at here, yes, please. Perhaps

18 it could be given a separate exhibit number.

19 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Exhibit 329.

20 MR. NICE:

21 Q. This document, then, tab 22 of our Exhibit 328, is a letter dated

22 the 2nd of October to Mr. Perez de Cuellar, the then Secretary General of

23 the United Nations, and you say that you're forwarding the ultimatum to

24 the Republic of Croatia, proof that the army is operating autonomously and

25 outside the framework of the existing institutions.

Page 10583

1 Is this the document that we've been looking at a little earlier,

2 Mr. Mesic?

3 A. Yes. This is an authentic document.

4 Q. And you go on to say: "The army is, by the tank blockade of the

5 highway and by closing all the airports in the country, making it

6 impossible for me as the legal and legitimate president of the Presidency

7 of the SFRY to come to Belgrade.

8 "The aggression of Serbia and the Yugoslav army, which has become

9 only Serbian, can be stopped only by recognising the new reality, because

10 it is evident that Yugoslavia as it used to be does not exist any more.

11 "The Serbian regime of Slobodan Milosevic has torn down the

12 Yugoslav federation.

13 "The only way out now is the recognition of the new subjects

14 within their borders, because otherwise the war, crimes and destruction

15 will go on, and the flames of war that have already been started by the

16 last Bolshevik bastion, Slobodan Milosevic's Serbia, will be spread to the

17 wider European area.

18 "Do something to stop the war in Yugoslavia, because you are the

19 one who can do it."

20 So we see here contemporaneously your expression of view that the

21 army has become only Serbian and that it was the accused who had torn down

22 the Yugoslav Federation.

23 A. Yes, that's what I pointed out here. But I also pointed out that

24 the flames of war could spread to the entire region and to other parts

25 too, because if Milosevic were to attain his war objective that all Serbs

Page 10584

1 live in the same state, namely that he take over the territories of

2 others, then others in Europe could also try to accomplish that and that

3 would be a war conflagration that would encompass all of Europe.

4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for Judge Robinson, please.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: The Secretary General must have been grateful for

6 the confidence you expressed in him. Did you get a reply to this letter?

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, but I called on the Secretary

8 General myself, and I said to him that international forces should be sent

9 in, which indeed was done later. However, I believe that had

10 international forces been brought in then when it became clear that

11 Milosevic had decided on the war option, had the international forces come

12 to the boundary between Serbia and Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina and

13 Serbia, there would have been no war. However, regrettably the

14 intervention of the international community came rather late.

15 MR. NICE:

16 Q. We've seen in one of the -- sorry.

17 MR. NICE: Is Your Honour finished?

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Go ahead.

19 MR. NICE: Thank you.

20 Q. We've seen in one of the earlier documents that there was a

21 suggestion that the Rump Presidency as you've described or as it's

22 described would hold enlarged conferences. Did it in fact do that? Did

23 it incorporate other members or purported members in its meetings?

24 A. A few times meetings were held, meetings of the Presidency that

25 were attended by Bogic Bogicevic, and Vasil Tupurkovski. However, after

Page 10585

1 my intervention, they did not come. They no longer took part in the work

2 of the Rump Presidency. That made it clear that they did not accept the

3 military coup that Milosevic had effected through the army and the

4 Presidency.

5 Q. We look at -- I'm sorry, we're changing volumes again.

6 JUDGE MAY: Before we do, it's quarter past. It may be a

7 convenient time. We'll adjourn now, 20 minutes.

8 --- Recess taken at 12.15 p.m.

9 --- On resuming at 12.37 p.m.

10 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Nice.

11 MR. NICE:

12 Q. We're on paragraph 28 of the summary. And, Mr. Mesic, can we

13 look, please, together at tab 13 in volume 1 of Exhibit 328, document

14 C2916, which are the minutes of the 144th, as described, sitting of the

15 Presidency, or draft minutes, to be precise.

16 We can put the first -- not the first page, the first substantial

17 page on the overhead projector. It's actually page 2. Thank you very

18 much.

19 We see, Mr. Mesic, that Branko Kostic chaired the meeting. We can

20 pick up who was present, including Jovic. Under the agenda we see that

21 item 1 is an agreement on ensuring continuity of the work of the

22 Presidency based on conclusions adopted at its 143rd session regarding the

23 state of imminent threat of war."

24 Just one detail before we move on. Redrafting of rules and

25 procedure and the like, can you help us at all with, from your experience

Page 10586

1 or knowledge, who did the drafting or who really did the drafting of these

2 changes to procedure and rules?

3 A. This was done by the staff of the Presidency, and Anton Stari was

4 head of the staff of the Presidency.

5 Q. Where was the driving force or impulse for those changes? Where

6 did it come from? Do you know?

7 A. This came from Branko Kostic, and Branko Kostic carried out what

8 Slobodan Milosevic told him to do.

9 Q. Under item -- under the agenda then, we have that part. If we go

10 on then to item 2, some current issues from the domain of all People's

11 Defence it says this: "The Presidency noted that it had analysed the

12 domestic, political and security situation at its 143rd session on the 1st

13 of October and unanimously concluded that we were facing an all out civil

14 war and the country was in a state of imminent threat of war."

15 Underneath, "Proceeding from the above conclusion, the Presidency

16 noted that the requirements had been met for the Presidency to start

17 working and functioning as envisaged by the constitution in a state of

18 imminent threat o war." And over the page. It sets out various matters.

19 We can perhaps come to item 2 to save time, although I should perhaps

20 observe at the top of the page that the Slovene members were excluded from

21 the right to command the armed forces and that the Presidency would

22 continue to meet in Belgrade.

23 Then we see the next bit, item 2, "The Presidency listened to and

24 adopted the report by the Federal Secretary Kadijevic on the situation in

25 crisis." And a couple of paragraphs after that: "In this connection the

Page 10587

1 Presidency concluded that the specialist services of the Presidency would

2 analyse decrees or laws adopted and recommend to the Presidency possible

3 amendments to them ...."

4 Well, this declaration of the threat of war. Your general

5 observations, please, Mr. Mesic, on this document. If any. I mean, if

6 the document speaks for itself and there's nothing more you want to add,

7 we'll leave it there.

8 A. Well, I think that the document is self-evident, that this is only

9 a continuation of the coup that had been -- that had been effected and

10 that is now being completed.

11 Q. Then let us turn to a statement made by that same General

12 Kadijevic on the 3rd of October. It's tab 14 of Exhibit 328, document

13 C2918. It's a statement by the Secretary for National Defence. We shan't

14 read all of it to save time.

15 You can see some of the ways in which he expressed himself. First

16 of all, the one, two, three, four -- the fifth paragraph on the first page

17 says this: "The fascist regime in Croatia claims that we have occupied a

18 third of the Croatian territory on behalf of Serbia while individuals and

19 groups in other parts of the country, blinded by nationalism and their

20 lust for power under any cost, call us traitors."

21 This use of the word "fascist" in relation to Croatia, what effect

22 did that have or what did that reflect in the approach of the writer,

23 Kadijevic?

24 A. They wished to compromise the authorities in Croatia, but of

25 course quite certainly there were phenomena of this type in Croatia that

Page 10588

1 did not -- were not suited to Croatian interests. However, these

2 phenomena could not be eliminated by the use of the army and the

3 destruction of towns and killing of people.

4 Q. Let's read on with what he said, at the foot of the document --

5 the foot of the first page and over to the second. "Acting in accordance

6 with the decision of the Presidency, we had only one goal, to prevent the

7 bloody ethnic clashes and hinder the repetition of a genocide of the

8 Serbian people. To this end, we have engaged our main forces in the

9 crisis areas. To these areas we've also sent some of our forces from

10 other garrisons in Croatia and from other parts of the country which was

11 used by the local Ustasha authorities as a process for a general blockade

12 of the garrisons in other parts of Croatia as well, which lasted a couple

13 of days. Some of the garrisons were forcefully occupied with methods that

14 we have -- that have all the characteristics of genocide.

15 "What we have in the Republic of Croatia is neo-Naziism. It

16 presents at the moment the greatest threat to the Serbs in Croatia, but it

17 is also in direct opposition with the vital interest of the Croatian

18 people and all other peoples on the soil of Yugoslavia.

19 "At this moment, the army desires nothing else but to establish

20 control in the crisis areas, protects the Serbian population from

21 prosecution and extermination and to liberate the members of the Yugoslav

22 People's Army and their families. A precondition for this is the defeat

23 of the Ustasha forces. We still maintain our often repeated position that

24 all political questions must be resolved by dialogue ...."

25 Here he's using Second World War terminology and imagery. He's

Page 10589

1 referring to Serbian genocide and maintaining that they wanted to resolve

2 everything by dialogue. What is your view or what's your experience as to

3 whether they were attempting to resolving everything by dialogue,

4 Mr. Mesic?

5 A. If the use of tanks, the VBRs, helicopters and other equipment is

6 considered to be a dialogue, then that dialogue was highly effective.

7 Q. Do you have any comment to make on the use of this language

8 harking back to the Second World War?

9 A. I should just like to emphasise that this was an attempt to

10 compromise Croatia. Because from this text it is evident that not a

11 single stroke of the pen does General Kadijevic mention a single Croat

12 jeopardised. Towns were destroyed, villages were. The population was

13 expelled from its homes and houses, but General Kadijevic only protects

14 the Serb population, and this is proof and evidence that he is in fact

15 establishing Serb power and authority, because he makes no mention of

16 protecting the Croatian citizens or citizens of Croatia that are ethnic

17 Croats or belong to any other ethnic group except that he says in fact

18 that he has placed himself at the disposal of Slobodan Milosevic and the

19 creation of the boundaries of a Greater Serbia.

20 Let's move on one day to the 4th of October in volume 1, tab 11 of

21 Exhibit 328, document C2905, the minutes of the 145th sitting, said to be.

22 JUDGE MAY: Is there any reason, Mr. Nice, for the slightly

23 eccentric order in which these documents appear?

24 MR. NICE: The reason is, if I may say so, an absolutely sensible

25 one on the part of those who put these bundles together. The documents

Page 10590

1 are findable by the fact that the document numbers are sequential. Now,

2 you might say, but if we know that we're going to put documents in a

3 different order they could have all been done differently. The staff who

4 have to look after those, and those of us who call the witnesses know with

5 absolute certainty that whatever the order is on the night before we call

6 the witness we will probably have changed it the following morning and,

7 therefore, the certainty of being able to find documents, it's better to

8 put them in this order. We will, of course, wherever possible put

9 documents in an order that entirely tracks forecast evidence and normally

10 you'll only have one binder, but otherwise, I'm afraid it's down to our

11 unpredictability that the staff have done it this way to help you.

12 Q. This document, the draft minutes of the 145th sitting, Mr. Mesic.

13 You don't have to look at all of it, but we can see the composition of the

14 Presidency, and then perhaps we'll look at item 1, 2, and a little bit of

15 4.

16 Item 1 says this: "Following a proposal by the Federal

17 Secretariat for National Defence, and pursuant to Article 316, the

18 Presidency adopted an order for the partial mobilisation to bring up to

19 strength commands, staffs, units, and institutions of the armed forces to

20 ensure combat readiness for the implementation of tasks and duties

21 stipulated." The order to take effect on the day of publication. And in

22 light of the above concluded that the Federal Secretariat for National

23 Defence would prepare a record for mobilisation and forward it to the

24 Presidency.

25 Over to item 2. I'm just going to read 2, as I say, and a little

Page 10591












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10592

1 bit of 4.

2 "The vice-president briefed the Presidency on documents relating

3 to control and command of the SFRY armed forces that he signed in the

4 absence of the president of the Presidency. In this connection, it was

5 concluded that the vice-president of the Presidency would continue to sign

6 documents from this domain in the absence of the president and inform the

7 Presidency later.

8 "Also, the Presidency was informed that in the absence of the

9 president, the vice-president signed decrees on awarding decorations to

10 active-duty personnel," and so on. "And in this connection, the

11 Presidency concluded that the vice-president would continue to sign

12 decrees on the award of decorations."

13 And then it deals with a similar power to execute the punishment

14 of stripping active-duty military personnel of rank.

15 Under item 4 but over at page at (C) and (D), the General

16 Secretary of the Presidency informed the Presidency that the president,

17 Stjepan Mesic, had convened a session on the 4th of October on Brioni. The

18 members of the Presidency who attended the session asked the secretary,

19 General Secretary, to inform the president that pursuant to the decision,

20 sessions would continue to be held in Belgrade. And then under (D) the

21 president was briefed on the contents of the note from the Presidency

22 Protocol office, including a request by the office to the president to

23 provide a plane from the federal government air service that would take

24 the president, that would be Mr. Mesic, to Strasbourg. The Presidency

25 pointed out that the visit and appearance of the president before the

Page 10593

1 European parliament in Strasbourg first needed to be approved at the

2 session of the Presidency, which would establish a platform and discuss a

3 possible speech that he could make on behalf of the Presidency.

4 Mr. Mesic, all this was happening at the time that you were in

5 Zagreb, but as we know, we can see, willing to travel to places accessible

6 to all members of the Presidency. Were you being genuinely afforded and

7 accorded the rights of president or not?

8 A. From all this it is quite clear to me that one could not attend

9 the Presidency meetings in Belgrade and that all this was done in order to

10 implement the war goals of Slobodan Milosevic. That is why the Rump

11 Presidency was set up to begin with, to pass all the decisions that came

12 from Milosevic. And this is common knowledge, and I have already spoken

13 about that and what was actually called for.

14 Q. Thank you. In the summary, we can turn over now to the role of

15 the JNA. Some of this has been dealt with already.

16 Mr. Mesic, you told us that the JNA favoured the accused, and you

17 spoke of the three limbs of the former Yugoslavia, describing how only the

18 JNA was left. Are you able to help us a little more with why it may have

19 been that the JNA favoured the accused and what they felt about their

20 future as you understood it on the disintegration of Yugoslavia?

21 A. First of all, Tito had left the arena, both bodily and otherwise,

22 and so that factor disappeared. And it was certainly a factor of

23 cohesion, because Tito with his charisma was a factor of cohesion. The

24 second factor was the League of Communists of Yugoslavia, the party that

25 was multi-ethnic in composition and which was broken up by Slobodan

Page 10594

1 Milosevic in order to be able to realise his war goals. For this, he

2 needed the army, but the army was no longer able to be the integrational

3 factor, and that's why he did everything he could to have the people step

4 down from the army who were not willing to work towards Milosevic's goals,

5 which means that the Slovenians were thrown out, the Bosniaks, the

6 Albanians, the Macedonians, the Croats, and to all intents and purposes

7 the army became a Serbian army which in disciplined fashion put into

8 practice everything that the Supreme Command asked it to do and the

9 Supreme Command listened to the Supreme Commander, that is to say,

10 exclusively Slobodan Milosevic.

11 Q. In the -- in an earlier period, this is paragraph 30, if you can

12 help us, Mr. Mesic, in an earlier period, in the late 1980s and before we

13 come to the 1990s, did you have any sense of how the JNA felt generally

14 about coming change, whether it found that something with which it was

15 comfortable or not?

16 A. In the proposal for a federal agreement Croatia and Slovenia

17 started out from the fact that the republics themselves should be

18 proclaimed independent and autonomous; that is, to say to be proclaimed

19 internationally recognised subjects and that then a confederal agreement

20 should be signed. This agreement had to settle which jobs would be joint

21 ones, how much that would cost, and who would pay what. What was the key

22 to be applied and the rule of thumb to be applied for paying the joint

23 costs involved? We never got an answer to that. The army was interested

24 in finding a sponsor - and I've already spoken about this in my testimony

25 - and they saw it in Slobodan Milosevic, because they considered that he

Page 10595

1 would take over the greatest portion of the Yugoslav territory and that

2 that would be sufficient to maintain the army and military mechanism. And

3 that is why the army, from the very outset, took Milosevic's side and

4 executed all his tasks.

5 Q. And then coming particularly to events on Croatia's soil, and

6 we'll hear of course of this much more from direct witnesses or witnesses

7 observing things directly, but to your knowledge did it become involved in

8 incidents where non-Serbs suffered on Croatian soil?

9 A. The Yugoslav army took part in everything or, rather, that portion

10 of the army which was organised to do so, which meant the KOS. Wherever

11 there was an incident, before that the representatives of KOS or, rather,

12 General Vasiljevic, were in the field on the ground. They provoked

13 clashes and conflicts, which was the point at which the army was to step

14 in to allegedly separate the warring sides. This was quite transparent.

15 But the peaks of power in the army, and Milosevic with them, was convinced

16 that this could be put into practice and that they would be able to

17 deceive and trick both the international community and the Yugoslav public

18 at large and that they would throw Croatia down to its knees.

19 This was the thought prevailing in all the provocations, as was

20 particularly transparent in the provocation that took place in Pakrac.

21 Q. To which I turn, paragraph 32. In a sentence, because we've heard

22 about this already from elsewhere, Pakrac and Plitvice were examples of

23 what you've already described, I think.

24 A. In concrete terms, this is what happened in Pakrac: Part of the

25 police force rebelled, and they disarmed the other portion, other members

Page 10596

1 of the police force that remained loyal to the Ministry of the Interior of

2 Croatia. The Ministry of the Interior sent aid and assistance, and they

3 managed to disarm the ones that had rebelled and re-establish the work of

4 the police station and law and order prevailed. That's what happened.

5 Just like in any other legally organised state, the police force must be

6 there to enforce law and order. Nobody was wounded; nobody was killed.

7 And then for reasons that are not know to me, not clear to me, the

8 army went out on the spot, took out 20 tanks, brought out its troops who

9 were allegedly there to separate the warring parties. But there were no

10 conflicting parties. They said it was an internationality conflict.

11 There's no inter-ethnic conflict when the loyal policemen were mostly

12 Serbs and those who attacked the police station on the other side. What

13 it was was a clash between several groups of policemen. But as I say,

14 everything was solved above ground, lege artis. The army appeared, the

15 troops appeared and established control, and that was the

16 Virovitica-Karlovac-Karlobag boundary.

17 Q. And just yes or no to this: To your knowledge did the JNA have

18 any role in the arming of the SDS and Serb radicals as they may be, Serb

19 radicals? Just yes or no if you know if you know about that.

20 A. All the weapons came from the garrisons of the Yugoslav People's

21 Army.

22 Q. Thank you. In volume 2, a very quick look at a contemporaneous

23 statement of yours at tab 17 of Exhibit 328, document 2965. We see how

24 you were describing things yourself at the time.

25 In the English version-- well, in both versions it's simply the

Page 10597

1 last paragraph on the second page, the first page revealing that it's a

2 statement that you made in a hall in Belgrade on the 4th of August 1991.

3 And this is what you said on that occasion:

4 "Peace is not desired. Those who mention it most, really do not

5 want it. This war was announced three years ago, and now that

6 announcement is being realised. The parole is all Serbs in one country.

7 It is not about the rights of Serbs in Croatia but to join territories

8 with Serbia. Various groups in Croatia are being armed which are

9 attacking the Croatian authorities; they are financed and armed from

10 different sides, villages with about fifty houses have about 20-30

11 automatic guns, mortars, various weapons. The problem is more serious

12 than it seems at first. Many groups that are trained and armed have come

13 to Croatia. They are burning entire villages and killing. They are

14 attacking traffic patrols of the militia. The town of Brinje has just

15 been bombarded. They want the exiled from the towns so the territory of

16 Serbia can be expanded. The conflicted sides would have to accept the

17 agreement that there will be no expanding of the territory. The army

18 cannot solve a single problem by being present."

19 Mr. Mesic, was that a statement you made in August of 1991 and was

20 it true?

21 A. Yes, it's true. Those are my exact words. That is what the

22 situation was and that is what I said.

23 Q. Thank you. In order to move very swiftly, can we have a quick

24 look on the overhead projector at C340, which is tab 3 in the map book,

25 Exhibit 326, a map of the territory with the Karlobag-Karlovac-Virovitica

Page 10598

1 line on it.

2 MR. NICE: Further up, please. Further. With the black line.

3 Thank you very much.

4 Q. The significance of this line, Mr. Mesic, please?

5 A. Yes. That was the envisaged line or border, boundary of Greater

6 Serbia, Virovitica, Karlovac, Karlobag. It was an attempt to put it into

7 practice. And so we see that all the incidents took place in that area

8 precisely to achieve that border.

9 Q. Thank you. Let's turn is to some questions of notice, notice

10 given with an eye to what Generals Kadijevic and Adzic knew. In volume 2,

11 tab 27 of Exhibit 328, document C4278.

12 This, Mr. Mesic, is a document of yours of some significance in

13 the overall history. I will avoid reading all of it because I have an eye

14 on the clock. It can be read at leisure.

15 You send this to -- or sent this to the Federal Secretariat for

16 National Defence in Belgrade, and in the middle of the first page you deal

17 with the destruction of towns and villages being burnt on a daily basis.

18 You deal with the army functioning in an extra-institutional way, which

19 virtually means that there has been a military coup.

20 Six lines further on you speak of the army arming all renegade

21 groups and providing them with protection, mobilising the Serbs or

22 tolerating such mobilisation to the Territorial Defence, those units

23 functioning under JNA command.

24 Over the page just to pick up one example. Thank you.

25 You deal with Major General Vasiljevic transporting Milan Martic

Page 10599

1 who was captured in the -- in BH and for whom a warrant has been issued

2 for crimes he committed to Knin like a hero.

3 And we move to the last page to see what you ordered as president

4 of the Presidency.

5 MR. NICE: On the third sheet. Thank you very much.

6 Q. You ordered all units to withdraw to their barracks within 48

7 hours and particular units to withdraw from an area within 72 hours. You

8 went on to order that all military commanders who ignored or didn't abide

9 by the decision put themselves outside the law.

10 The effect of this order, please? Mr. Mesic, was this order

11 effective? What was its consequences, if any?

12 A. My order emanated from the agreement, and I quote that agreement.

13 It was the agreement on the cease-fire. The army had to follow my orders

14 because the agreement was a full-fledged one. It was in force. However,

15 the army did not state its views on this. All they did was issue

16 statements saying that they were implementing the constitution directly.

17 All they were in fact doing were listening to Slobodan Milosevic, and I

18 have already emphasised that several times.

19 Q. But we see from this particular order that you put them on notice

20 as to what you said was happening on the State of Croatia.

21 A. Yes. That's quite right, although they knew that full well

22 themselves.

23 Q. And if we go to another document, again to look at it briefly,

24 tab 18 in Exhibit 328, document C2990. The same date. This time to the

25 Presidency itself, coming from Kadijevic, seeing what he has to say.

Page 10600

1 We can see that over at the second page, perhaps just paragraph 2,

2 is how he met the accusations that he plainly knew were being made.

3 MR. NICE: Second page, please, paragraph 2.

4 Q. "The accusation that the JNA is waging an undeclared war again the

5 Republic of Croatia is insulting. The JNA is acting in accordance with

6 decrees."

7 And then paragraph 3: "The JNA does not bear responsibility for

8 human victims," and so on.

9 Paragraph 6: "There is not a single proof of the claim by the

10 president of the Presidency that many army commanders are not under the

11 control of higher commands," and so on.

12 But this document shows that he was aware of the complaints made,

13 does it not, Mr. Mesic?

14 A. Yes, of course he knew. And it was all part of a scenario.

15 Q. Thank you. Another topic briefly. Paramilitary groupings

16 operating in Croatian -- on Croatian territory. Were you aware at the

17 time of such groupings and did you have the names for any of them?

18 A. Certainly we knew that these groups were gathering, arming, and

19 obtaining logistical support from Serbia. They gathered together in

20 Serbia, some of them in Croatia, but many of them in Serbia. They arrived

21 bearing arms, and Serbia did nothing to stop those who were on their way

22 to Croatia to kill people and to destroy Croatian towns.

23 Q. On the territory of Croatia, did they act independently or were

24 they subordinated in any way to any other grouping? If so, to what?

25 A. It was quite evident that they were subordinated to the commands

Page 10601












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10602

1 of the Yugoslav army, because they carried out their tasks jointly, or,

2 rather, the ones went before and the other side followed them.

3 Q. Can you give us the names of any of the paramilitary groups of

4 which you were aware at the time? And if you can't it doesn't matter, but

5 if you can, please do so.

6 A. They were called the Serbian Guard, Dusan the Great, the Bozur or

7 Pianiz [phoen]. They arrived bearing different names, and they arrived as

8 military units. So it could cannot be said that Serbia did not know that

9 the army was mobilising and that well-armed and well-prepared, it was

10 crossing the Croatian border and destroying Croatian towns.

11 Q. Next topic, Dubrovnik. The attack on Dubrovnik in the autumn of

12 1991 occurred while you were still president of the Presidency although

13 not in a position to go to Belgrade. Did you find yourself on a relief

14 convoy of vessels, humanitarian convoy known as the Relief Convoy or

15 sometimes the Libertas Convoy?

16 A. That is correct. I took part in the convoy which consisted of a

17 large ferry called Slavija and 40 to 50 smaller vessels. Its task was to

18 bring humanitarian aid to Dubrovnik because Dubrovnik was surrounded on

19 all sides, from the sea and from land. The only way help could come was

20 by sea if the Yugoslav army removed the blockade.

21 I negotiated for three days in order to enter Dubrovnik and bring

22 aid to Dubrovnik. The world saw what the aggressors were doing and how

23 they were destroying Dubrovnik. Dubrovnik had never been attacked in its

24 history. Its walls had never been attacked until this war waged by

25 Slobodan Milosevic.

Page 10603

1 Q. Your efforts to gain access to Dubrovnik, you say, took a long

2 time., How did you eventually manage to achieve that? Were you able speak

3 as the president to the person in charge or not?

4 A. I talked to Admiral Brovet from the ship. I talked to General

5 Zec. Well, he's an admiral too. I talked to several other commanders,

6 and I told them that they had to let the convoy through because it was

7 carrying humanitarian aid. However, both Brovet and Zec asked that we

8 take the convoy to Zelenika, to Montenegro, where the vessels would be

9 searched. They said that we could return to Dubrovnik only after that had

10 been done. This would have required a long time and a large and could not

11 be done. So I exerted pressure to have the convoy allowed to pass.

12 Admiral Brovet told me there were guns on the vessels. I said to him,

13 "Admiral, the guns are in your minds, in your heads. Let us go to

14 Dubrovnik and take the aid there." In the end they gave in and we took

15 the aid to Dubrovnik. However, before that, the army searched the vessels

16 and established that there were no weapons on them.

17 Q. Before the admiral granted you permission to dock in Dubrovnik,

18 did he take time away from the telephone or radio on which you were

19 speaking to enable him to speak to others or not or can't you remember?

20 A. I spoke to General Brovet by radio, and before giving me an

21 answer, he always went off, evidently to talk to General Kadijevic with

22 whom he had a link established, and Slobodan Milosevic. He was the only

23 person that he could have consulted. All this was part of Milosevic's war

24 plan.

25 Q. You spent, I think, a day or thereabouts at most on Dubrovnik; is

Page 10604

1 that correct? In Dubrovnik.

2 A. That's correct.

3 Q. What, if any, signs of defence did you see at the time you went

4 there? And we'd better just get it a little more accurately the date on

5 which you actually landed.

6 A. Croatia had a very poor defence. We had infantry weapons, and it

7 was difficult to defend Dubrovnik. It was quite irrational to accuse the

8 citizens of Dubrovnik of wanting to attack anyone, let alone Montenegro,

9 which would have been idiotic on their part.

10 Q. We look briefly at two documents in volume 2 of Exhibit 328, first

11 tab 24, document C3025, which is 109 as an exhibit in Dokmanovic.

12 And this is a letter of yours of the 3rd of October to Perez de

13 Cuellar, the Secretary General of the United Nations who you address on

14 behalf of -- can you place the English version, I'm so sorry, on the

15 overhead projector. Thank you very much.

16 You address him on behalf of the democratic forces in Yugoslavia,

17 as president of the country. You set out what you say is the aggressive

18 policy of the Republic of Serbia destroying constitutional order.

19 Next paragraph. You've been informed by the mayor of Dubrovnik,

20 as you describe it, it has become a victim of barbarism and a new symbol

21 of the inability of the international community to prevent aggressive and

22 totalitarian forces from attacking democratic societies.

23 You pleaded with him that the United Nations not repeat the tragic

24 history of its organisations between the two world wars and that the

25 international organisation resolve to immediate and efficient measures to

Page 10605

1 stop further war.

2 Did you get a response to this letter from Perez de Cuellar or was

3 it covered in the same visit you made to him that you spoke of when

4 answering, His Honour, Judge Robinson's question earlier?

5 A. Well, it was -- the answer is the same.

6 Q. The last three exhibits the Chamber will be perhaps pleased to

7 know are all short and all in volume 1. Exhibit 328. The first being tab

8 8, document C280, again relating to Dubrovnik, being an appeal from the

9 anti-war campaign centre Dubrovnik group. A little later. This time the

10 5th of November. But addressed to the Presidency, all members personally.

11 General Kadijevic, President Tudjman, the accused, Alija Izetbegovic, and

12 the presidents of Montenegro, and coming from the rally of the Belgrade

13 for Dubrovnik anti-war marathon held in Belgrade on the 30th of October.

14 And the appeal draws to the attention the fact that the population of

15 Dubrovnik is treated contrary to international conventions, sets out the

16 grounds for that assertion under the Geneva Conventions and Additional

17 Protocol, saying that all norms have been transgressed and that the

18 citizens of Dubrovnik have without a trace of guilt become collective

19 hostages for a legal and unjust goal, setting out how Dubrovnik and other

20 areas are occupied territories. And over the page, demanding peace and

21 respect for basic human rights and a halt to the further spread of

22 conflict.

23 Now, I'm concerned with simply where this document went. Did you

24 receive a copy of this document then or were you aware of its being sent

25 at the time, Mr. Mesic? You were still technically a member of the

Page 10606

1 Presidency. Indeed you were still technically its president for another

2 month.

3 A. I received this document. I knew about it. And I was happy when

4 I saw it, because I thought, well, at least part of the people in Belgrade

5 are against the war option of Slobodan Milosevic.

6 Q. You told us much earlier this morning of your first encounter with

7 the accused. How many face-to-face meetings did you have with him

8 altogether, approximately, in 1991?

9 A. It's hard to say how many face-to-face meetings there were.

10 Whenever there was a session of the Presidency and whenever the presidents

11 of the republics came together. There was also some socialising. There

12 were informal meetings, dinners or lunches, and then we could chat

13 informally for a while.

14 So it's very hard to say how many times I encountered him, but I

15 was able to form an opinion about the character and the goals of Slobodan

16 Milosevic.

17 Q. Let's Deal with a couple of matters of detail first before we come

18 to those views you formed. Did he ever say anything particularly about

19 his attitude towards the Serbs who lived outside Serbia?

20 A. Yes. He always said that he could not leave more than two and a

21 half million Serbs outside Serbia were Yugoslavia were to collapse. And

22 this meant precisely what I have been saying here, that is that he would

23 allow Slovenia and part of Croatia to secede from Yugoslavia, but he would

24 insist on the part inhabited by Serbs remaining in Yugoslavia. He was

25 interpreting the provisions of the Yugoslav constitution in an erroneous

Page 10607

1 manner, because it was actually the republics that had the right to

2 secede. But he always refused to understand this. He either didn't want

3 to understand it or he really didn't.

4 Q. In the course of the time in which you saw him, had there been

5 suffering by individuals in different ethnic groups for him to react to?

6 A. He could have desisted from the war option because he knew what

7 was going on on the ground and he was well-informed about it. But he

8 never took any action to stop it. He subordinated everything to his war

9 goals. And he used his associates as a dispensable. When they performed

10 what he wanted them to perform, he would get rid of them. He was always

11 working for the war option.

12 Q. Did he express, state, or reveal concern about the individual

13 sufferings of individuals in your presence ever?

14 A. No. I never saw any sign of feelings in him ever. All he had

15 were goals that he was implementing.

16 Q. Can we look now at two external views that fit within this overall

17 period, the last two exhibits. First of all, C240, tab 4. It is a

18 Resolution passed in the Senate of the United States of America and

19 prepared by Robert Dole, leader of the Republican minority, and Mr. Pell,

20 President of the Committee for Foreign Political Affairs, and this is

21 dated the 12th of September of 1991, and it condemned, as you can see, the

22 politics of armed aggression in Yugoslavia led by the accused, authors

23 giving full credit to the EC for its intermediary role, requesting the

24 government to put the issue on the agenda of the Committee for Security

25 and Cooperation in Europe having a conference in Moscow. And then we see

Page 10608

1 at the end there's a condemnation of the JNA.

2 As to this particular Resolution, had you been in any way involved

3 in its preparation or did it come independently of anything that you did?

4 A. The Resolution itself was passed without any participation on my

5 part unless by "participation" you mean my informing international

6 institutions of what was going on in Croatia. I was very happy when this

7 Resolution was passed, because I understood that international players had

8 finally understood that what was happening on the territory of the former

9 Yugoslavia was not a war to preserve Yugoslavia but, rather, an aggression

10 conducted by Milosevic against others for the purpose of creating a

11 Greater Serbia.

12 Q. Similarly can we look, please, at tab 5, the text of a speech by

13 James Baker on the 25th of September in the Security Council, which as we

14 see from the text gathered: "... because of the crisis in Yugoslavia

15 having escalated into open war, to all nations of Yugoslavia violent

16 conflicts is threatening with dreadful economic and social discord." He

17 went on to say: "... equally concerned about the dangerous effect on

18 neighbouring countries."

19 Next paragraph: "Many sides in Yugoslavia have contributed to the

20 tragedy that happened in this country. We've been warning about it in

21 June, many months before all this happened. One-sided act, including acts

22 undertaken by the republics, have not made it easier, but on the contrary,

23 they terminated options regarding peaceful negotiations and made it

24 difficult to solve the tragic situation in Yugoslavia, making it even more

25 complex."

Page 10609

1 He went on to say that even though a lot of blood had been

2 shelled, it is time type for all sides to obligate themselves to solve

3 interpersonal differences in a peaceful manner and that all sides must stop

4 confrontations and cease-fire must be respected.

5 He then went on to say this: "However the Government of Serbia

6 and the Yugoslav federal army are the bearers of a special and, by all

7 means, bigger responsibility for the dark future that is facing the people

8 of Yugoslavia unless they stop the bloodshed and redirect the violent

9 course in which they're heading at the moment.

10 "It is clear that the federal Yugoslavian army does not serve as a

11 neutral guarantee for the cease-fire in Croatia."

12 Next page: "On the contrary, it actively supports local Serb

13 forces in the violation of cease-fire, causing deaths of citizens...," and

14 so on.

15 Next paragraph: "It is equally clear that the Serb leadership is

16 actively supporting and encouraging the use of force in Croatia."

17 Next paragraph: Obvious goal of the Serb leadership and

18 Yugoslav army, if you're working as a team, is the creation of smaller

19 Yugoslavia or Greater Serbia, and so on.

20 Did you take any part in formulating this opinion of Mr. Baker or

21 was this his own judgement formed at the time we see independently?

22 A. Mr. Baker was able to see for himself what was happening on the

23 territory of the former Yugoslavia, and I was in no way able to influence

24 his opinions.

25 Q. One other -- two other questions of you, please, Mr. Mesic, both

Page 10610

1 of them technical.

2 Have you, in the course of preparing yourself to come and give

3 evidence here, been shown other volumes of exhibits simply for the purpose

4 of authenticating them in case they are documents to be used by other

5 exhibits in due course -- by other witnesses in due course?

6 A. Yes. I have seen these documents. I looked through them. I

7 determined that they were authentic and I have no objection to them.

8 MR. NICE: Your Honour, may the other volumes of exhibits be

9 marked for identification? I don't wish to obviously burden the Chamber

10 with exhibits, but they are marked for identification and subject to those

11 authenticating remarks.

12 Q. Second technical --

13 JUDGE MAY: Let that be done.

14 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecution Exhibit 330 marked for identification.

15 MR. NICE: For the record, that also comes in two volumes. Two

16 binders, rather.

17 Q. Second technical matter or semi-technical matter, Mr. Mesic.

18 You've made a number of observations and judgements in the course of your

19 testimony. Did you in fact in 1991 make similar judgements, publishing

20 them or -- not publishing, allowing them to be published in newspapers or

21 broadcasts on television and radio?

22 A. My interviews and all my public speeches were available to the

23 media and all the members of the Presidency, and Yugoslav public opinion

24 were all aware of my opinions.

25 MR. NICE: Your Honour, I mention that only for this reason: I

Page 10611












12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.













Page 10612

1 have, in the event, a small clip of some of the newspaper reports of

2 observations by Mr. Mesic. One could imagine circumstances in which they

3 might become relevant in re-examination. I wouldn't want to be thought in

4 any sense taking advantage of the accused by doing that. I'm not going to

5 seek to add contemporaneous newspaper reports to the bundle of exhibits,

6 but I'll simply serve him with a clip of the newspaper reports for use and

7 to avoid his taking bad points about things not having been said in 1991

8 when they were, in fact, said by this accused.

9 I make that point as well as reminding the Chamber, in light of

10 accused's observations this morning that of course we served on him last

11 week lists of the various documents in the various categories, those that

12 would be relied upon, those that would be produced, and a third category

13 of documents where the witness could deal with the documents if asked in

14 order to assist him.

15 That's all I ask of this witness.

16 JUDGE MAY: Very well. Cross-examination tomorrow.

17 One matter. Mr. Kay, we haven't dealt with Mr. Wladimiroff's

18 matter today. We now have the Bulgarian translation, and I hope he has it

19 too. We will deal with that matter at a convenient time on Thursday. If

20 you would pass that message on.

21 MR. KAY: Certainly.

22 JUDGE MAY: Thank you.

23 Mr. Mesic, would you be back, please, at 9.00 tomorrow morning to

24 continue your evidence.

25 Adjourned.

Page 10613

1 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.43 p.m.,

2 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 2nd day

3 of October, 2002, at 9.00 a.m.