Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 358

1 Thursday, 18 December 2003

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

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

5 JUDGE PARKER: Should we now have the witness in again. Would you

6 call the matter.

7 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is case number

8 IT-01-42-T, the Prosecutor versus Pavle Strugar.

9 [The witness entered court]

10 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon, Mr. Stringer. If I could remind

11 you that your affirmation from yesterday still holds.

12 THE WITNESS: Yes. Thank you.


14 JUDGE PARKER: Now, it's Mr. Rodic, I think, is going to

15 cross-examine. Is that correct?

16 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.

17 Cross-examined by Mr. Rodic:

18 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Stringer, good day. I am counsel for General

19 Strugar, and I will put some questions to you about your testimony of

20 yesterday. You said that you worked in the Ministry of Defence in London

21 from 1962 to 1965 and that the last four years you were the director of

22 security in the Ministry of Defence, in charge of physical security of

23 persons, buildings, and facilities. Is this correct?

24 A. No. I was in the Ministry of Defence between 1962 and 1995, not

25 1965. Otherwise, it's correct.

Page 359

1 Q. Can you tell us when you became director of security of the

2 security department.

3 A. At the end of 1991.

4 Q. Was this on your return from your mission to the former

5 Yugoslavia?

6 A. Yes, it was.

7 Q. Can you tell us, before this appointment, what did you do in the

8 Ministry of Defence? What post did you hold and what duties did you

9 perform?

10 A. In the immediate period prior to my going to Dubrovnik, to

11 Croatia, I was what we call an inspector of establishments, looking after

12 the financial and manpower requirements of the Royal Air Force.

13 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us what schools you completed, how long

14 you attended those schools, and when you graduated from them.

15 A. I, first of all, attended St. Ignatius College in London until

16 1950. Between 1950 and 1953 I was at Mercers' School in London, which is

17 run by the Mercers' company. I then went to the University of Southampton

18 to study navigation.

19 Q. Did you graduate from that university?

20 A. I graduated, but it is a non-degree graduation in that I went into

21 the merchant navy as a navigating officer cadet.

22 Q. Did you have any diplomatic experience or as a soldier were you

23 ever sent on a mission abroad?

24 A. During my national service, I was sent to Cyprus on active

25 service. During my reserve service in the territorial army I also went to

Page 360

1 Aden for a short period on active service, and during my career with the

2 Ministry of Defence, I also went to Washington, at the British embassy

3 there as head of the British defence staff administration.

4 Q. Can you tell us precisely where and when you did your national

5 service.

6 A. My national service was between 1957 and 1959, and the bulk of it

7 was done in Cyprus after initial training in England.

8 Q. Was this military training in the navy, because you mentioned the

9 merchant navy. So could you clarify this, please.

10 A. Yes, I served in the merchant navy between 1953 and 1957 but had

11 to retire from that due to poor eyesight. It was then, because I was

12 under 25 years old at the time, that I had to do national service.

13 Q. You also mentioned that you spent 13 years in the Territorial

14 Defence and that you are a reserve major. Throughout these 13 years, were

15 you constantly in the reserves or were you simply on a list of reserve

16 officers?

17 A. No, I was constantly on the reserve list with the territorial army

18 throughout that period, but left in 1951 when I had to go to Northern

19 Ireland as the command secretary for the army there. Not 1951, I beg your

20 pardon, 1971 -- 1973. I beg your pardon. I must get my dates right.

21 Thinking back, it was 1973 that I left the territorial army.

22 Q. When you were leaving England to go to this mission in the former

23 Yugoslavia, you said that you received a briefing in the intelligence

24 service of the Ministry of Defence as well as a briefing by the ambassador

25 of the mission in Zagreb. Can you tell us in greater detail what

Page 361

1 information you were given at those briefings and what you were told about

2 the situation in Yugoslavia.

3 A. I can't recall the precise details of those briefings at this time

4 - it was rather a long time ago - but essentially it was, as I stated

5 earlier, a general briefing on the situation pertaining in Yugoslavia at

6 the time, that the Croatian and the Yugoslavian armies were in conflict at

7 that time.

8 Q. Did they explain what sort of conflict this was?

9 A. A military conflict.

10 Q. Between whom did this military conflict take place, where, and

11 why?

12 A. The conflict took place in Croatia between the Croatian forces and

13 the Serbian army, the JNA.

14 Q. Do you know why this conflict broke out? Did they tell you that?

15 A. I can't recall the precise details of the situation at the time

16 except that Croatia wanted independence from the Federal Republic of

17 Yugoslavia at the time, and this resulted in what I suppose effectively

18 you could call a civil war.

19 Q. At the time, did you know more about the social organisation of

20 Yugoslavia? You mention the Federation of Yugoslavia. Do you know how

21 many republics there were, what peoples lived in those republics? Did you

22 know anything about the history of the former Yugoslavia?

23 A. I did read about the history of the former Yugoslavia before I

24 went, from books, and I was briefed on the disposition of the ethnic

25 groupings within the Yugoslavian Republic at the time.

Page 362

1 Q. I will try to summarise the questions I have put so far by asking

2 you whether one could say that at the moment of your arrival in

3 Yugoslavia, due to your briefings and what you had read, you were familiar

4 with the political situation in the former Yugoslavia in 1990 and 1991.

5 Would that be true or not?

6 A. That would be basically true.

7 Q. Do you know, then, who the regular armed forces were in this

8 period, according to the constitution of the former Yugoslavia?

9 A. Yes, the JNA.

10 Q. In your view, what would the Croatian armed formations be then?

11 MR. WEINER: I'd object to that, Your Honour.

12 JUDGE PARKER: On what basis do you put that, Mr. Weiner?

13 MR. WEINER: He's asking him for an expert legal opinion as to how

14 one would characterise the legality of the Croatian armed forces.

15 JUDGE PARKER: I didn't see in it a request for a legal opinion

16 rather than a general appreciation, but maybe I didn't understand the

17 question correctly.

18 Perhaps, Mr. Rodic, can you tell me more fully what it is that

19 you're seeking to get.

20 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Absolutely, Your Honour. Precisely

21 what you just mentioned. In view of the former questions, the previous

22 questions about Mr. Stringer's education, military experience, and the

23 briefings he was given before leaving for the former Yugoslavia, and his

24 knowledge of the situation with which he was familiar, knowing that the

25 JNA was the regular armed force according to the constitution of the

Page 363

1 former Yugoslavia, I'm asking him for his opinion as to how he viewed the

2 situation and the Croatian armed forces in connection, of course, with

3 this conflict. This is not an expert opinion but his personal opinion.

4 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Rodic.

5 Mr. Weiner, I propose to allow the question despite your

6 objection, but I do so on the basis that the witness, A, is not a legal

7 expert; B, is not giving an expert legal opinion but is giving a general

8 factual impression in his answer.

9 Have you lost the question by now, Mr. Stringer?

10 THE WITNESS: I have got the question, actually, yes, Your Honour.


12 THE WITNESS: I mean, all I can say, I think, at this point in

13 time is that when we went there, there was a de facto situation with the

14 JNA as the federal army, but also a Croatian force which was uniformed.

15 Now, the legal definition as to whether the Croatian force was a legal

16 entity I can't comment on.

17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]

18 Q. Thank you. Mr. Stringer, yesterday you also said that you had

19 read something about Dubrovnik as a city, about its significance. So I

20 would like you to explain more about what you knew and what you had read

21 about Dubrovnik.

22 A. Well, I'd read, of course, that it was an ancient city of cultural

23 importance, and it was defined as a World Heritage Site, of course a great

24 tourist attraction, and of commercial significance to Croatia.

25 Q. I don't know whether you answered part of my question, so I'll

Page 364

1 repeat it: Before arriving in Yugoslavia in 1991, had you ever been there

2 before, in Yugoslavia or in Dubrovnik?

3 A. No. No.

4 Q. And when you gleaned this knowledge about Dubrovnik, you mentioned

5 that it was a World Heritage Site. Did you ever come across information

6 that this city was demilitarised before being declared a World Heritage

7 Site?

8 A. My understanding is that a World Heritage Site cannot be occupied

9 by armed forces, that it is in fact a demilitarised zone effectively.

10 Q. So you are aware that in that period and before the war there were

11 no military facilities in Dubrovnik?

12 A. I understand that is the case.

13 Q. Can you tell us the following, please: Do you remember when, on

14 how many occasions, and where you talked to the investigators of the

15 Tribunal?

16 A. I talked to them on two occasions, I believe, in London.

17 Q. On those two occasions, can you tell us in what year that was and

18 where?

19 A. Last year, at the Ministry of Defence in London, 2002.

20 Q. Were both those interviews in 2002 in the ministry or was there

21 something different?

22 A. No. They were both held within the Ministry of Defence.

23 Q. And did both interviews take place in 2002?

24 A. As far as my recollection goes, yes.

25 Q. And during both interviews did you talk to the same investigator?

Page 365

1 A. Yes, I did.

2 Q. Can you tell us more about the period of time that lapsed between

3 the second and first interviews.

4 A. It must have been at least six months.

5 Q. Can you tell us why the interviews were held in the Ministry of

6 Defence? Because, as we heard, you are retired and have been since 1995.

7 Q. My understanding is that my duties in Croatia at the time, that I

8 went there -- I went on behalf of the Ministry of Defence, so they did

9 have an interest in this, but it was also to ensure security that these

10 interviews took place within a secure Ministry of Defence building.

11 Q. Please don't hold this against me, but don't you feel safe in

12 England if you talk to an investigator outside the Ministry of Defence

13 building? As a retired person, you were invited to an interview with an

14 investigator, and as far as I understand, you shouldn't be in any danger.

15 A. I don't think it was a question of being in danger. Indeed, I was

16 asked if I would like to be interviewed at home, but it was more

17 convenient for the investigator and for myself to have the interview in

18 London, and being within the Ministry of Defence building was convenient

19 if nothing else. And the security is not so much to do perhaps with

20 physical security of the person but with any documents that there might

21 be.

22 Q. Did you contact, in connection with these talks with the

23 interrogators, anyone from the Ministry of Defence? Did anyone talk to

24 you about the importance of these interviews or that you had to talk to

25 the investigators?

Page 366

1 A. Nobody said that I had to talk to them.

2 Q. Who did you talk to from the Ministry of Defence on this subject

3 then?

4 A. I talked to the officials who are responsible for the former

5 Yugoslavian desk within the Ministry of Defence.

6 Q. Were these officials from the intelligence service?

7 A. No.

8 Q. Can you say more specifically, then, from what service were they?

9 A. They were general civil servants like myself, administrative civil

10 servants.

11 Q. What specifically did they say to you?

12 A. Specifically that it would be helpful if I told the investigators

13 what I knew and what I was aware of, but there was no obligation on me to

14 do so.

15 Q. Does this mean that the investigators of the Tribunal got in touch

16 with you through the Ministry of Defence and not personally?

17 A. There is a procedure for investigators to approach witnesses in

18 the United Kingdom, and this is done, I believe, through the Foreign

19 Office and the Ministry of Defence as a former Ministry of Defence

20 employee.

21 Q. And did you on that occasion talk with the representative of the

22 ministry about the details of those interviews; i.e., the documents? Did

23 you seek any documents from them?

24 A. No, I didn't.

25 Q. Thank you. Can you tell me, you indicated before that two

Page 367

1 interviews took place in the year 2002, and as far as you could recall,

2 about six months had elapsed between the two interviews. Did you also

3 draw up and sign with the investigators a statement on both occasions or

4 what did you do?

5 A. It was only on the second occasion that I drew up a statement and

6 signed it in the presence of the investigator.

7 Q. And during the first interview, was any record made, any minutes

8 taken? Did you sign anything during the first interview?

9 A. No, I didn't. I handed over some papers that I had which I took

10 with me because I thought they might be of use.

11 Q. Can you tell us when it was that you handed over these papers that

12 could be of some use? Was it during the first or the second interview?

13 A. The first interview.

14 Q. This refers, if I understood you correctly, to all the documents.

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Thank you. I have here a statement with data on the witness

17 Stringer, Adrien Paul, and the date and the place, the venue of the

18 interview given, is the 6th and 7th of March, 2001, and 26th and 27th of

19 March, 2002. The interview was conducted in the Ministry of Defence of

20 the United Kingdom in Whitehall, and this statement was signed on the 27th

21 of March by you personally and on the part of the investigator. Is this

22 the statement that was the result of your talk with the investigator?

23 A. Sorry, I haven't seen the statement. It must be the statement.

24 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Will the usher kindly distribute this

25 statement. Please also provide a copy of the statement to the witness for

Page 368

1 identification purposes.

2 MR. WEINER: Excuse me. Your Honour, for clarification, are they

3 using this to impeach the witness or are they introducing this as an

4 exhibit, or what are they doing? Are they tendering this?

5 JUDGE PARKER: At the moment, all that's asked is for the

6 statement to be identified. We haven't yet learnt where that's going.

7 I'm waiting too.

8 THE WITNESS: I confirm that this is the statement, yes. The

9 answer, Mr. Rodic, was that that is the statement.

10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. Thank you.

12 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, of course it is the

13 intention of the Defence, with the aid of this statement, as well as to

14 verify the credibility of the testimony of Mr. Stringer, meaning that this

15 statement also refers to subjects and contents that were the subject of

16 yesterday's examination-in-chief. And whether we shall also tender it

17 into evidence is something is that we should decide after having completed

18 our cross-examination.

19 JUDGE PARKER: Is it that you are to suggest that there are

20 matters in this statement which differ from the evidence given yesterday?

21 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Absolutely, Your Honour.

22 JUDGE PARKER: Very well. And I think that answers your question,

23 Mr. Weiner.

24 MR. WEINER: No problem, Your Honour, but is the policy here on

25 impeachment by prior inconsistent statements that the full statement is

Page 369

1 tendered to the Court or is the statement only tendered to the Court if it

2 is offered as an exhibit?

3 JUDGE PARKER: To that I don't know the answer, Mr. Weiner, let me

4 say. At the moment, we have them in front of us, but we will see. It

5 will assist us in following the cross-examination on the document to have

6 it. Whether we keep them afterwards will depend whether or not it becomes

7 an exhibit or not.

8 MR. WEINER: No problem. Fine.

9 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Rodic. If you'd continue.

10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

11 Q. Mr. Stringer, as you have confirmed that this is indeed your

12 statement that you gave to the investigators, in the statement, the time

13 when you performed the -- conducted the different talks with the

14 investigator is different. It is not a six-month lapse between the two

15 interviews but, rather, over a year, and they were not both conducted,

16 both interviews, in the year 2002 but one in 2001, and then after over a

17 year the second interview was conducted when this statement was drawn up

18 and signed.

19 As this is the near past, can you tell us, please, why these

20 differences occur?

21 A. Simply my faulty memory. The original interview was clearly in

22 2001, but over a period of two to three years it does become slightly

23 difficult for me to recall precisely that time frame, which is why I said

24 there was at least a six-month gap between the two interviews.

25 Q. Can we then note that the same goes for your memory for a period

Page 370

1 of ten to 11 years back?

2 A. When questioned orally about events that happened 12 years or so

3 back, clearly one's memory is not entirely fresh, which is why I have to

4 occasionally refer, to jog my memory, to my diary, which is an accurate,

5 in my opinion, statement of the events as they happened at the time. The

6 problem is, as I think you will understand, sir, that when questioned

7 about individual conversations that took place, it's almost impossible to

8 recall exact details from memory, which is why we have this statement

9 here, which is a transcript, basically, of my notes taken

10 contemporaneously whilst in Dubrovnik.

11 Q. I fully understand you, Mr. Stringer, but what I really wanted to

12 know is whether precisely the content of this statement and your memories

13 are mainly based on your notes or the diary that you consulted when you

14 gave your statement to the investigators in connection with the substance

15 of your statement, namely that in that connection you used the diary and

16 your notes rather than what you could remember.

17 A. As I understand the question, yes, I used the diary and my notes

18 rather than my memory for the substance of this statement.

19 Q. Would you remember all the names, all the events had you not used

20 your notes?

21 A. I would not remember all the names had I not got my notes in front

22 of me. The events certainly are fresh in my memory, but getting them in

23 chronological order over a period of a week, you know, may be a little

24 difficult without reference to the notes and the diary itself which is set

25 out in chronological order.

Page 371

1 Q. Thank you. Today, as yesterday, you said that you refreshed your

2 memories by consulting your notes which you have preserved, if I

3 understood you well, and yesterday you said that you have kept all the

4 copies of your diary and the documents sent to you and to others. Is this

5 correct?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Can you tell me, where was it that you kept these documents?

8 A. I kept them in a secure safe.

9 Q. And why did you keep those documents at all, copies of these

10 documents for a period of 11 years?

11 A. For historical interest.

12 Q. Did you also keep other official documents in this way?

13 A. Not in connection with my defence work. This was quite separate.

14 Q. But you said that precisely during your mission you were also an

15 official of the Ministry of Defence, meaning that we can also view these

16 documents through the Ministry of Defence just as those documents while

17 you actually worked at the Ministry of Defence in London that you came by

18 during your term of office. Did you copy those also and keep them in a

19 safe?

20 A. No, these are not Ministry of Defence documents, these are

21 documents of the European Community Monitoring Mission.

22 Q. Then can we say that these are official, that this is official

23 documentation of the European Community's Monitoring Mission in the former

24 Yugoslavia?

25 A. Yes.

Page 372

1 Q. Is it allowed for such official documentation to be copied and

2 taken to one's home for private purposes?

3 A. It can be. Yes.

4 Q. Is it possible to be done also with the official documentation of

5 the Ministry of Defence in London that you handled?

6 A. If it's not classified documents, and these are not classified

7 documents.

8 Q. So you said that since the time that you returned from your

9 mission in the former Yugoslavia to the time you met with the

10 investigators, you had all these documents, all these copies that we have

11 been referring to yesterday and today.

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. Awhile ago to my question you replied that you handed over the

14 copies of these documents which you kept in your safe to the investigator

15 during your second interview when also you drew up and signed a statement.

16 Is that correct?

17 A. I thought I said that I handed over copies of the documents to the

18 investigator at the time of my first interview, and it was at the second

19 interview that we signed the statement.

20 Q. You're right. I apologise. You said that you handed over all the

21 documents to the investigator during the first interview.

22 Can you tell us where the originals of these documents are?

23 A. I'm not aware where they are at this point in time.

24 Q. Did you at all hand over the originals to the European Community's

25 Monitoring Mission, or are you keeping them as things of historical value?

Page 373

1 A. The originals were handed over and filed, as I understand it, by

2 the mission itself.

3 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Just a minute, please.

4 [Defence counsel confer]

5 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Will the usher please -- Prosecution

6 Exhibits P1 and P4, can she present them to the witness, please.

7 Q. This document marked P2 is, if I'm not wrong, a letter addressed

8 to you signed by a Lieutenant Colonel General Milan Ruzinovski. Do you

9 see it?

10 A. Yes, I do.

11 MR. WEINER: Excuse me. Are we dealing with P2 now or P1?

12 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] P1.

13 MR. WEINER: It says P2.

14 JUDGE PARKER: I'm sorry. You first mentioned P1, and then

15 specifically mentioned P2, as I followed it, Mr. Rodic. You've got me

16 lost as well as Mr. Weiner. Which document are you wishing?

17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Sorry. This is document P1, that is

18 the letter addressed to Mr. Stringer, signed by a Lieutenant Colonel

19 General Milan Ruzinovski. The B/C/S version and the English translation.

20 Q. Do you have it in front of you?

21 A. Yes, I do.

22 Q. In the document which is the English translation of the B/C/S

23 version, is there a -- is there your signature at the bottom of that

24 version?

25 A. Yes. My initials, yes.

Page 374

1 Q. Can you tell us when it was exactly that you affixed your initials

2 to this document?

3 A. 26th of March, 2002, according to the date on the bottom.

4 Q. Is the date also written in your handwriting?

5 A. Yes, it is.

6 Q. Will you please now look at document P4. This is a handwritten

7 report dated 10th of October. Do you have that document? Is it your

8 signature at the bottom of the page?

9 A. Yes, it is.

10 Q. And who wrote the date on it?

11 A. 7th of March, 2001. I did. It's clear that my memory was faulty

12 in regard to the handing over of the document P1 at the original

13 interview. This was clearly handed over at the second, and it was simply

14 a slip of mind.

15 Q. Can you reply to my question why were not all the documents handed

16 over at the same time?

17 A. Because I think the second document, Exhibit P1, was a document

18 which I found later, and after discussion with the investigator, it was

19 thought that this would be helpful for the Tribunal.

20 Q. Is there -- is it possible that the investigator may have given

21 you this document?

22 A. Not at all.

23 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Will the usher please also give the

24 witness document P2.

25 Q. Do you have the B/C/S version in front of you? It is also a

Page 375

1 letter addressed to you by General Ruzinovski.

2 A. Yes, I do.

3 Q. Can you tell me whose handwriting is this in this note under the

4 signature of General Ruzinovski?

5 A. It is mine, and the same date as the other letter.

6 Q. Is it the same handwriting as the one in document P4? Because

7 they do not look alike, but I have to ask you.

8 A. Yes, they are the same.

9 Q. In the B/C/S version of this document, P2 that is, is it your

10 signature on the bottom of the page?

11 A. No.

12 Q. And is the date written in your hand?

13 A. The 13th of October, 1991? No.

14 Q. Is this your handwriting? This is what I want to know.

15 A. No, that's not my handwriting.

16 Q. Let's go back. Note on the B/C/S document, ADRM 03 number

17 02191321, the note written under the signature of General Ruzinovski, that

18 is not your handwriting; right?

19 A. That's right.

20 Q. Do you know who wrote this?

21 A. I can't recall who wrote it.

22 Q. Will you look at the English version, please, and tell me, is this

23 your signature --

24 A. Yes, it is.

25 Q. -- under General Ruzinovski?

Page 376

1 A. Yes, it is.

2 Q. And you also wrote the date?

3 A. I did.

4 Q. Can I take it then that you also handed this document to the

5 investigator after more than a year relative to the other, previous

6 documents?

7 A. Yes, that's correct. These were documents that were referred to

8 in my diary notes, I think.

9 Q. Please, so let us go back once again to document P4. At the

10 bottom of that page, next to your signature, something has been added.

11 Near the signature and the date, something has been added in handwriting.

12 Can you read it for us.

13 A. Yes. It's my handwriting and it says "Compiled in Dubrovnik on

14 dates shown." I was asked to put that statement on it with my signature

15 at the time that I handed the document over to the investigator, to

16 confirm that this document was in fact compiled and written in Dubrovnik

17 on the date contemporaneously.

18 Q. Can you tell us where this diary of yours is right now?

19 A. No.

20 Q. Do you have any special reason why you cannot say that?

21 A. Not at all. I handed over my copy to the investigator, and I

22 assumed that the monitoring mission would have retained its copy, but I

23 can't say where it is now, whether they kept it for a period of 13 years.

24 I don't know.

25 Q. If I understood you correctly, does this mean that you no longer

Page 377

1 have in your possession these notes and this diary?

2 A. That's correct.

3 Q. And these documents?

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. Did you keep them only for the sake of the Tribunal?

6 A. No. I was not aware there was going to be a Tribunal.

7 Q. I'm asking you this because you previously explained that you kept

8 these documents out of historical interest, and yet you handed over these

9 documents to the investigators, not expecting them to be returned to you.

10 A. I believe it is more important for documents such as this to be

11 handed over to a Tribunal rather than be held by a personal individual.

12 So just in the interests of justice, so that we can have the facts set out

13 in the best possible manner.

14 Q. In connection with this diary, can we call it a compilation of

15 notes which, during your mission in Dubrovnik, you kept, as did your

16 colleagues Nolan and Zak from the mission?

17 A. This report, if I could just explain, that the -- each individual

18 mission team would report back and submit a report of its activities as

19 soon as possible after completion of the individual mission. Clearly,

20 from Dubrovnik, it was only possible to submit a report at the end of our

21 tour, which was, what, one week. Therefore, this document was written up

22 at the time, day by day, and submitted as a report - which it states at

23 the top, "Report of Team Bravo" - to the mission upon our return.

24 Q. What I would like to clarify here is whether these notes are your

25 personal diary in which only you jotted down your personal observations or

Page 378

1 is it a diary, the contents of which were entered by you perhaps but which

2 constitute actually a compilation of all the notes made by all your

3 colleagues for any particular day?

4 A. Yes. This -- each date's entry was made at the end of the day.

5 It was a compilation of the notes by each member of the team, but we were

6 all together on each occasion. So I transcribed these notes onto this

7 report at the end of each working day. It was a compilation of the notes,

8 if you like, made on the spot by the team, although I tended, because I

9 was English, to actually write the notes.

10 Q. So we can agree then that this is a compilation of notes which you

11 transcribed at the end of the day, but this compilation consists of notes

12 made by all three members of the mission. Is this correct?

13 A. It is correct insofar that I was the one that actually wrote notes

14 during the course of the mission. We discussed between ourselves that my

15 transcription of the events of the day was in fact correct so that we all

16 three agreed that these notes were in fact a true reflection of what had

17 transpired during the course of the day.

18 Q. Let me ask you specifically: During the six or seven-day mission

19 in Dubrovnik, did Mr. Nolan and Mr. Zak write down anything of their

20 observations, meetings, issues raised during their contacts? In other

21 words, did they make any notes at all during their mission in Dubrovnik

22 and then show them to you so that this report or diary that you are

23 talking about could be compiled?

24 A. To the very best of my recollection, they made no notes as such.

25 This was oral discussion between us as to what had happened, because we

Page 379

1 were all together at all of the meetings. I mean, none of us acted

2 individually and separately.

3 Q. If I'm correct, you mentioned yesterday in one part of your

4 testimony that Mr. Nolan was in Cavtat for a while, separated from you, in

5 connection with the situation concerning shots fired, and can you then

6 assert that Mr. Nolan and Mr. Zak, during your mission, made no notes of

7 their own as to what they found?

8 A. Mr. Nolan, at that time, was separated from us for about ten

9 minutes, I suppose, but of course I can't say whether they individually

10 made notes which they didn't show me.

11 Q. I'm asking you whether they made any notes that they did show you

12 on the basis of which they discussed the daily report with you.

13 A. No. I can recall no occasion where they had made any written

14 notes as such.

15 Q. To be quite honest, I'm very surprised that the other two members

16 of the mission didn't use their pens when working in the mission. Can you

17 tell me whether they read the final version of the daily report compiled

18 by you?

19 A. Yes, they did. This was a report which was agreed between the

20 three of us before it was submitted.

21 Q. Did anyone sign these reports to show that they stood by their

22 contents?

23 A. I can't recall, to be perfectly honest. I have a feeling that we

24 all signed a note at the end of the day, but I cannot recall.

25 Q. As far as I was able to see from the notes exhibited by the

Page 380

1 Prosecutor pertaining to these daily reports which you compiled, as you

2 say, not a single one of them has any signature apart from your initials

3 which were placed there only 11 or -- ten or 11 years later.

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. Is it usual for official reports to be sent without signatures?

6 A. In these circumstances, yes.

7 Q. Can you tell me whether there was anything to prevent you or your

8 colleagues from the mission from signing those documents at that time?

9 A. No, not at all. It may be that we had signed or initialed a

10 covering note on the top, but I can't recall it. The essence of the

11 report is as stated there. The covering note, if there was one, I'm not

12 aware where it might have ended up, if there was one.

13 Q. Can you tell me whether, apart from you, anyone else from the

14 mission in Dubrovnik compiled reports pertaining to this period?

15 A. Not the specific period when I was involved in Dubrovnik.

16 Q. You said that you spent a certain period of time in the tasking

17 cell of the mission in Zagreb before going to Dubrovnik, and you said that

18 you visited barracks in and around Zagreb. Is this correct?

19 A. That is correct.

20 Q. You also said that after the mission in Dubrovnik, you returned to

21 Zagreb. Can you tell me exactly what you did in Zagreb then in this

22 tasking cell?

23 A. In that tasking cell, as I recall it at the time, we were

24 primarily concerned with the events in Vukovar which happened on the day

25 that I returned. So we were making the necessary reports to the

Page 381

1 Presidency in The Hague about that.

2 Q. So on your return to Zagreb, you dealt more with Vukovar and

3 another mission went to Dubrovnik instead of yours. Is this correct?

4 A. Another mission went to Dubrovnik, and we handed over to that

5 mission when in Dubrovnik on the day that we left, which was the 16th of

6 October, I think it was.

7 Q. The handwritten letters that were marked for identification

8 yesterday bearing the dates 19th, 20th of October, and none of these

9 letters or messages is addressed personally to you. Is this correct?

10 A. That is correct.

11 Q. Can you tell us, where did you get these documents from then?

12 A. These documents I obtained from the mission in Zagreb when the

13 team returned.

14 Q. Were these documents addressed to you personally or to the mission

15 in Zagreb, just as you sent letters to Zagreb while you were in Dubrovnik?

16 A. These letters, I understand it, were addressed to the specific

17 members of the teams, the team that went out there.

18 Q. But why, then, did you take these documents for yourself?

19 A. Because this wrapped up, as far as I was concerned, my mission to

20 Dubrovnik. It just tied the loose ends up at the end of it.

21 Q. Did you then select for yourself official documents in the mission

22 in Zagreb which you would keep and take with you?

23 A. If they were relevant to my mission.

24 Q. But you handed over your duties in Dubrovnik before these

25 documents were created, if I'm not wrong, because on the 16th you already

Page 382

1 left Dubrovnik.

2 A. Yes, that's correct.

3 Q. And the messages that we are talking about refer to the next

4 mission which came to Dubrovnik after yours, that had nothing to do with

5 your mission, and the letters are dated three or fours days after your

6 departure. Why then did you take these letters? These are official

7 documents.

8 A. These are documents which related to the events in Dubrovnik which

9 again were of significance.

10 Q. Can you tell us until when you stayed in Zagreb?

11 A. Until the 25th of October.

12 Q. Do you have any other documents as there are five days to go until

13 the 25th of October?

14 A. No, because as far as I can recall, nothing further significant

15 occurred.

16 Q. So up to the 25th of October, as far as you know, and you followed

17 the work of the mission, there were no significant events in Dubrovnik

18 which would attract your attention?

19 A. I wasn't involved at that stage with Dubrovnik, and that was the

20 problem.

21 Q. As far as I could understand you, on the 19th and 20th, you were

22 not involved in Dubrovnik either and yet you took the documents. These

23 were two specific documents that were given to me, and I had no other

24 interest in Dubrovnik after that.

25 Q. Who gave you these documents?

Page 383

1 A. I can't recall at this stage.

2 Q. Do you know the reason why these documents were given to you of

3 all people?

4 A. I believe there was a change in the tone of the negotiations

5 between the team that succeeded us and with General Strugar and the JNA at

6 the time.

7 Q. I don't understand what this has to do with my question in

8 connection with the documents.

9 A. This was an interest -- an interesting development that had

10 happened at that specific time.

11 Q. I don't understand. Are you trying to say that the situation in

12 Dubrovnik deteriorated after your departure?

13 A. Certainly relations between the team and the JNA had deteriorated.

14 Q. And who reported this to you and what did it have to do with you?

15 A. I can't recall who reported this to me at this stage. It had

16 nothing specifically to do with me except that I had been there at a

17 critical time prior to the advancement of the front line around Dubrovnik.

18 Q. Since, as you say, the mission in Zagreb also monitored the

19 developments in Osijek, Vukovar, Zagreb as well as Dubrovnik and probably

20 a number of other places throughout Croatia; is this correct?

21 A. Yes, that's correct.

22 Q. On your return from Dubrovnik, you said you dealt with the

23 situation in Vukovar. Is this correct?

24 A. I was one of a number of people who were involved in the events

25 subsequent to the evacuation of certain people from -- from Vukovar.

Page 384

1 Q. Do you have in your possession the same sort of documents

2 connected with Vukovar or Osijek or other places?

3 A. No.

4 Q. Were the situations there not as interesting as the one in

5 Dubrovnik as far as you were concerned?

6 A. I was not so personally involved.

7 Q. Very well. I will move on. Yesterday, you said that on the 5th

8 of September, you arrived in Zagreb. Is this correct?

9 A. That's correct.

10 Q. In the statement you gave to the investigators in 2001 and 2002,

11 it says that you arrived in Zagreb on the 29th of September. It's on the

12 first page, third paragraph on page 1 of your statement. So there is a

13 discrepancy of almost a month.

14 A. 29th of September. I'm sorry, I can't identify that.

15 Q. It's in the third paragraph from the top. The paragraph begins

16 with the words, "In September 1991, I was requested by the Ministry of

17 Defence to go to Croatia ..."

18 A. I do see that. I think that must be a misprint.

19 Q. Did you read the statement before signing it?

20 A. Yes, I did.

21 Q. At the end, as far as I can see, you confirm that everything in

22 the statement is true.

23 A. That's correct, but occasionally there may well be a small error

24 that one has overlooked in such a long statement, and for that I do

25 apologise.

Page 385

1 Q. All right. When you mentioned the mobile mission in Zagreb,

2 yesterday you said that for the first seven days of your stay in Zagreb

3 you visited barracks in and around Zagreb and visited the JNA troops that

4 were in the barracks blockaded by Croatian forces, that you made sure that

5 they had food and water, and that you monitored the situation to see

6 whether the JNA would try to break out. My question to you, as you spent

7 a long time in the army, is: Is this not an odd situation, and what did

8 you think of it at that time, and what did you think of your role in that

9 mission?

10 A. I think the whole situation was odd at the time, and the mission

11 was there to try and calm things down and enable the two sides to reach

12 amicable settlement of their problems. The JNA were confined within their

13 barracks, and of course that was a peculiar thing to happen.

14 Q. Do we agree that it's odd that a regular armed force of a country

15 should be confined to barracks and that, with all due respect, as a

16 foreigner in a mission you should visit them and monitor the situation to

17 see whether they had enough food and water?

18 MR. WEINER: Objection, Your Honour. This question is: Do you

19 agree that it's odd that a regular armed force of a country should be

20 confined to the barracks. His opinion as to oddities is not relevant to

21 this case.

22 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Weiner, I'm of the mind that I would allow the

23 question. It's a -- there is some substance in what you put, but I think

24 it very much reflects the general tenor of the cross-examination and what

25 is being explored. We can understand that.

Page 386

1 Carry on, Mr. Rodic.

2 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

3 THE WITNESS: Yes. I mean, my opinion is that it was a very odd

4 situation.

5 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]

6 Q. Were you afraid that the JNA might try to break out of the

7 barracks by force, you as a member of a mission with the task that you

8 had?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. I would also like to hear your opinion, bearing in mind your

11 experience and the position you held, whether in view of the fact that

12 this was a regular armed force which was in fact occupied by the Croatian

13 armed forces and confined, whether that kind of break-out would have been

14 legal.

15 A. I can't comment on the legality of this situation, I'm afraid.

16 Q. To put it more simply, in your view, is it a normal situation for

17 a soldier to sit in the barracks and to be prevented from communicating or

18 going out of the barracks? How would you as a soldier respond in such a

19 situation?

20 A. I can't say how I would respond to such a situation because you

21 can't be specific about this. All I can say is that it was a peculiar

22 situation at the time, and we have to recognise the de facto situation,

23 that they were confined in their barracks and surrounded by Croatian

24 troops.

25 Q. Can such a situation become a source of conflict or tension in the

Page 387

1 area?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. And did such situations happen throughout Croatia, as far as you

4 know? Did you receive similar reports from other mission centres outside

5 Zagreb?

6 A. Yes, I believe there were.

7 Q. So could an armed conflict erupt because of such a situation?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. In your statement which you gave to the investigators, you said

10 that on the 1st of October, 1991, the JNA launched an offensive against

11 the municipality of Dubrovnik. You also said - this is the fourth

12 paragraph of your statement - that "There had been no obvious political or

13 military reason to launch such a campaign."

14 A. Yes. That was our opinion.

15 Q. Do you think that the events in Dubrovnik can be viewed in

16 isolation from the overall situation in Croatia which we have just been

17 talking about?

18 A. To the best of my knowledge, there were no JNA barracks being

19 confined by Croatian forces in the area, and Dubrovnik was a demilitarised

20 zone.

21 Q. What period are you referring to when you say that Dubrovnik was a

22 demilitarised zone?

23 A. I'm referring -- sorry. I beg your pardon.

24 Q. When you say that Dubrovnik was a demilitarised zone, what period

25 of time exactly are you referring to?

Page 388

1 MR. WEINER: Objection, Your Honour.

2 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Weiner.

3 MR. WEINER: Your Honour, some of these statements - and I just

4 want some clarification here - he's not -- he's attempting, I think, to

5 impeach with prior inconsistent statements, but this is not inconsistent

6 with his testimony. Some of this information we have not raised. He's

7 asking these questions directly out of his statement, and these are not

8 inconsistent with his statement.

9 If he's going to do that, I think he should try to move and have

10 the document admitted as a piece of evidence.

11 JUDGE PARKER: It seems to me that the whole document may be far

12 wider than the purpose of this cross-examination. He's merely dealing

13 with one particular issue at the moment.

14 One of the effects of what is occurring may be that it will become

15 admissible at your hands, Mr. Weiner. I don't feel there is reason to

16 disturb what's happening at the moment.

17 Carry on, Mr. Rodic.

18 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. But perhaps

19 to clarify this for our colleague, I said at the beginning why I was using

20 this statement, and I said absolutely it was on account of the

21 discrepancies between the content of the statement and yesterday's

22 examination-in-chief. Of course, I can say right now that at the end of

23 the cross-examination, we will indeed be asking for this statement to be

24 tendered as an exhibit.

25 JUDGE PARKER: Do I take it then, Mr. Rodic, that you'll be

Page 389

1 identifying some further matters that you say are discrepancies as you

2 move through the document?

3 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Absolutely, Your Honour, because it is

4 of the essence for the Defence of General Strugar. And I should like to

5 ask you another question, because we are not au courant with the actual

6 schedule of this sitting. Is it the time for a break now?

7 JUDGE PARKER: I have been watching the clock and it's just a

8 little past the time. I was waiting for a convenient time in your

9 questioning, and by the sound of it, we've reached a convenient time,

10 Mr. Rodic.

11 But before we break, could we just be clear then so that

12 Mr. Weiner is more at ease with the matter, that it is your intention to

13 be tendering -- or seeking to tender this document at the conclusion of

14 your cross-examination.

15 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.

16 MR. WEINER: We have no objection.

17 JUDGE PARKER: I rather gathered that, Mr. Weiner.

18 We will have, then, a quarter of an hour break now.

19 --- Recess taken at 3.48 p.m.

20 --- On resuming at 4.10 p.m.

21 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Rodic.

22 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

23 Q. From the contacts that you had during your mission in Dubrovnik

24 with the representatives of the Yugoslav People's Army, did you obtain any

25 information from them as to why they were there in that area around

Page 390

1 Dubrovnik and generally in the area and what the specific task of the

2 army, that is, and the role of the army was in that area and the entire

3 area of the 2nd Operational Group?

4 A. We were advised when we met with General Ruzinovski and

5 representatives of his command that they believed the Croatians had taken

6 up positions within Dubrovnik and were attacking their forces.

7 Q. Did you believe such claims on their part?

8 A. From our observations, we saw no such forces within the Dubrovnik

9 city.

10 Q. Are you saying that at the time of your mission you did not at all

11 see Croatian forces in and around Dubrovnik? I'm talking about Croatian

12 armed forces.

13 A. The only time I saw any Croatian armed forces was when we had a

14 captain of what I believe was -- I think he was in the reserve forces of

15 the Croatian army, and he came as a liaison officer for the Croatian army

16 to one of our meetings with the JNA liaison officer, Captain Sofronije.

17 And I believe there may have been some Croatian army personnel lightly

18 armed with rifles at the time we left the port of Dubrovnik on the Slavija

19 ferry after we had been returned there having been stopped in the Adriatic

20 by a JNA warship. Otherwise, I saw no Croatian army forces at all, only

21 civilian police.

22 Q. Yes. In your statement, also on page 1, paragraph 4 from the top

23 you say: "To the best of my knowledge in this region there were no

24 hostilities nor was there a major ethnic Serb population to protect, as

25 the JNA and the Serbian government were claiming to be the case in other

Page 391

1 parts of Croatia."

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Do you know at all, did you have any information as to whether

4 there were any hostilities in the area that I'm referring to?

5 A. We had information by the time we got to Dubrovnik that there had

6 been some hostilities in that part of the villages around the Dubrovnik

7 airport had been shelled and also shells had fallen into the village of

8 Cavtat and that there had been shooting around the -- Dubrovnik itself

9 from the hills surrounding the city.

10 Q. Do you know anything about the preparations for war which were

11 undertaken in Dubrovnik during the years 1990 and 1991?

12 A. No.

13 Q. Are you aware of the tasks which were assigned to the police and

14 military units of the Croatians according to the orders of their

15 commanders at the time?

16 A. No.

17 Q. Do you know of any cases of barriers being erected on

18 communication links and roads? Do you know of cases of numerous attacks

19 on military facilities, of military columns of soldiers in the area in the

20 period 1990 by Croatian forces?

21 A. 1990, no.

22 Q. In 1991. I was referring to 1991.

23 A. We were aware -- we believed that there were renegade Croat forces

24 that may have attacked JNA forces.

25 Q. Can you clarify, explain what these renegade Croat forces were.

Page 392

1 A. It was our understanding that these were not regular, if I can put

2 "regular" in quotes, Croatian forces in the same way that there were also

3 irregular Serbian forces which were allegedly attacking villages in the

4 area.

5 Q. Is this statement that you made about the protection of Serbs,

6 namely that there were no Serbs in the area, was not the story about the

7 protection of Serbs just a cliche which you yourself also accepted and

8 took for granted during your initial days of your stay in Zagreb and as

9 you explained the situation in Zagreb as well as in other places in

10 Croatia?

11 A. I'm not sure that I actually understand the question.

12 Q. When in your statement you said that there was not an obvious

13 political or military reason for launching a campaign around Dubrovnik,

14 you said: "As far as I know, to the best of my knowledge, there were no

15 hostilities in the area nor was there a major ethnic Serbian population to

16 be protected, as the JNA and the Serbian government claimed to be the case

17 in other parts of Croatia."

18 A. Yes, that's true. We could not understand why there should be any

19 attacks on Dubrovnik itself. The fact that there may have been incidents

20 that had occurred well outside the area was not, we thought, of itself

21 reasons for any attacks to be made on Dubrovnik or areas where there were

22 no apparent Croatian forces.

23 Q. Did it seem to you that there were no Croatian forces or do you

24 assert that there were no Croatian forces in the areas in question?

25 A. No, I cannot assert that there were no Croatian forces in the

Page 393












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

13 English transcripts. Pages 393 to 398.













Page 399

1 area. We saw none.

2 Q. Was it a sufficient reason for hostilities if irregular Croatian

3 forces were attacking the regular armed force of the former Yugoslavia at

4 the time?

5 A. In my opinion, there was no sufficient reason for this.

6 Q. On page 2 of your statement, and this is the B/C/S version, you

7 say that there are numerous assumptions why the JNA had attacked

8 Dubrovnik. That is the last paragraph in the English version, on the

9 first page the English version.

10 A. Yes. These are hypotheses.

11 Q. I will read hypothesis number one, which is extensive, and it

12 says: "The JNA recognised the tourist and economic potential of the

13 region and the role it could play in the new Yugoslavia. The only way to

14 achieve this was to intimidate the local population into leaving. The

15 subsequent role and actions of the JNA appeared to be consistent with that

16 of an organised campaign intended to expel the Croats from the region."

17 Is this your assumption; and if it is, what is it based on?

18 A. It's not an assumption, it's a hypothesis, a number of hypotheses.

19 We can't say which one is correct. These were views taken at the time, a

20 possibility.

21 Q. When you say -- when you say these were views taken at the time,

22 are you referring to your personal view or I presume the view of the

23 entire mission that you worked with?

24 A. I think this is a general view of the mission, that this was one

25 of the possibilities for the attack on Dubrovnik.

Page 400

1 Q. I would also like to ask you in connection with the other

2 possibility which you stated, which is that they wanted to use it as a

3 bargaining chip for the release of JNA barracks from the Croatian

4 bureaucrats in Croatia. Were you personally satisfied of the truthfulness

5 of such a hypothesis? When I say this, I'm specifically referring to the

6 fact that the barracks were blockaded in Croatia and so on.

7 A. You can't be truthful about a hypothesis. This is merely one of

8 the considerations that one had to take into account as to whether it was

9 a possibility that this is a reason for the attack. I'm not saying it was

10 the reason, I'm simply saying that it's a possibility that it was a

11 reason; and there were a number of these possibilities.

12 Q. In view of the fact that you participated in the mission, that you

13 went out in the field, that you had extensive information on the basis of

14 which you replied to my questions inter alia also on the blockade of the

15 barracks, that is why I'm asking you. According to your knowledge and

16 experiences from the area, could this second hypothesis be taken into

17 serious consideration?

18 A. All these hypotheses can be taken into serious consideration.

19 Q. I'm asking you personally: Does your experience confirm the

20 second or the -- the first or the second hypothesis more?

21 MR. WEINER: I object to that. We're into -- we're into

22 speculation.

23 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic, I'm not sure whether you fully

24 understand the significance of the word "hypothesis" in the paper -- in

25 the statement of Mr. Stringer. He, I believe from his statement and his

Page 401

1 evidence, he is merely saying, "These were possible views that we took

2 into account which could have justified the attack when, in our

3 appreciation, we could not ourselves see that there was any military

4 justification for the attack," and therefore, they searched around for

5 possible justifications, and these were identified.

6 I don't understand Mr. Stringer to be saying, "I firmly held this

7 view or that view." He's merely saying these were the possible views that

8 were held by the mission which could have justified the attack. So he's

9 not really in a position to answer your last question, I don't believe.

10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I shall

11 continue.

12 Q. In your statement, you say that the shelling was indiscriminate

13 and reckless at best. During your stay in the Dubrovnik area, was there

14 any shelling, how much, and where?

15 A. During the course of my stay there, we heard mortar fire in the

16 background on the hills and Plat which is the hills surrounding Dubrovnik

17 itself, and also rifle fire. And as you know, we did experience heavy

18 machine-gun fire ourselves on our last day in Cavtat, which came from the

19 JNA forces. But we had observed, of course, the destruction of houses in

20 the area of Cavtat and in Cavtat itself, civilian houses, in areas where

21 we could determine no indication of any Croatian or other military

22 presence.

23 Q. Did you personally see any houses that had been damaged in Cavtat?

24 A. Yes, I did.

25 Q. Can you tell us exactly where? If you entered Cavtat, can you

Page 402

1 describe what houses in Cavtat were damaged?

2 A. We visited one house in Cavtat where the bedroom of a little girl

3 had been damaged, and there was part of a rocket launcher - I can't say

4 what kind - still lodged in the walls of that particular building. We

5 didn't go inside any other houses, but we did see damage to houses,

6 particularly on the route towards the -- towards the rendezvous where we

7 met up with the JNA liaison officers, and also damaged boats within the

8 area -- within the harbour of Cavtat. This had all been done just before

9 or before we arrived. So we did not ourselves actually witness the

10 shelling itself apart from the machine-gun fire we experienced on our last

11 day.

12 Q. The damaged houses that you say you saw on the road leading to the

13 place where the meetings were held, I believe that this is the road

14 leading to the airport, isn't it?

15 A. That's correct.

16 Q. That's why I can assert that no houses were damaged in Cavtat nor

17 was Cavtat shelled during that campaign. I will move on.

18 A. I'm sorry, but I do have to say that the house that we saw and

19 visited was in Cavtat itself and not one of the houses on the route out of

20 Cavtat. The house we saw was where a little girl's bedroom had in fact

21 been hit by a rocket.

22 Q. Very well. Can you tell me whether you saw any shelling anywhere

23 during your stay in the area.

24 A. We saw no evidence of shelling other than what we heard in the

25 distance. No evidence of current shelling, should I say, whilst we were

Page 403

1 there.

2 Q. What you heard as weapons in the distance being fired could have

3 been directed at the other side, by one side -- any side against the other

4 side. By this I mean not directed at the Dubrovnik area because there

5 were operations taking place elsewhere. Isn't that correct?

6 A. That is correct.

7 Q. Thank you. I will now ask you to look at the following part of

8 your statement where you say: "This is not to say that the Croats in the

9 form of their defence did not provoke or breach the many cease-fires at

10 the time."

11 That is the fourth paragraph on page 3.

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. As you are evidently familiar with the many breaches of the

14 cease-fires by the Croatian side also, can you tell us whether you saw

15 these breaches, when, where, and how many approximately there were during

16 the time of your mission. How many reports of this did you receive?

17 A. The reports of this during my mission in Dubrovnik, there were two

18 reports, I believe, from the JNA side as to attacks against their forces

19 where JNA soldiers had been killed. I'm not aware of further cease-fire

20 breaches other than those that I stated in my statement. I would also --

21 I would, of course, regard the machine-gunning at Cavtat as a breach of

22 the cease-fire.

23 Q. Did someone fire shots at you, the members of the mission?

24 A. The shots went over our head sufficiently close to make us take

25 cover. We did not believe that the attack was against us. We considered

Page 404

1 that in fact what was being shot at was a church on the side of the

2 harbour.

3 Q. Did the Croats ever shoot at you?

4 A. No.

5 Q. With the aim of frightening you or keeping you there?

6 A. There was one occasion which is when we left -- we were going to

7 leave Cavtat where we were threatened by a Croat if we were to leave them

8 alone, but my Polish friend who spoke a little language was able to calm

9 him down and tell him that, you know, we were going and that was it. But

10 otherwise, there were no occasions where we were frightened by or

11 intimidated by Croatians, or indeed I must, in fairness, say the JNA.

12 Q. Can you tell me, these Croats who tried to keep you there, what

13 were they wearing?

14 A. They were trying to persuade us to stay and they were civilians,

15 and they were really scared that if we went, they would be attacked.

16 Q. What weapons were these civilians carrying?

17 A. They weren't carrying any weapons at the time.

18 Q. Is it correct that these Croatian civilians fired shots at you in

19 front of the Croatia Hotel in Cavtat?

20 A. No.

21 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I would like to ask the usher to show

22 the witness and to distribute to the other parties this document.

23 Q. Can you first tell me whether you are familiar with this document.

24 A. Yes. This is a note I made. I think it was probably on my return

25 to England.

Page 405

1 Q. Can you tell us what this note refers to precisely.

2 A. This refers to the incident where a patrol had moved forward on

3 our last day in the area, had moved forward into Cavtat and where a

4 loudspeaker announcement had been made to the villagers of Obod to return

5 to their homes, otherwise Cavtat would be flattened, and where rifle fire

6 or heavy machine-gun fire was directed from the JNA side across to what we

7 believed was the church.

8 Q. Very well. You mentioned this event yesterday, but I'm interested

9 in something else now. I would like to know whether the signature on this

10 document, on the first page, and there are initials on pages 2, 3, and 4,

11 whether these are your signatures.

12 A. Yes, they are.

13 Q. And the date on the document, was it entered by you?

14 A. Yes, it was.

15 Q. Does this mean that you handed in this document to the

16 investigators in 2001?

17 A. Yes, it does.

18 Q. Can you explain to us why this is the only typewritten document

19 while all the others are in handwriting?

20 A. Because this, to the best of my recollection, was done upon my

21 return to England.

22 Q. I really cannot understand now why you would type this out in

23 England if on the 16th of October you went to Zagreb where you stayed

24 until the 25th. Wouldn't it be logical for you to compile the report

25 while you were working for the mission and not to type it out in London?

Page 406

1 A. I can't recall exactly when this was typed. It could have been

2 typed at the mission, or it could have been typed upon my return to

3 England. It was simply an elaboration of my manuscript notes.

4 Q. Is this the only purpose behind this typewritten document?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Why didn't you do the same with the other documents that we

7 discussed previously?

8 A. Because this was what we regarded as a major incident and we

9 thought this was the beginning of the eventual attack on Dubrovnik itself.

10 Q. Did you give this document to anyone?

11 A. I can't recall.

12 Q. Can you read out what it says under item 10 in this document.

13 A. Yes. "At the same time Nolan went to the Cavtat hotel to

14 telephone Dubrovnik and then to Zagreb about the incident, the team was

15 threatened with shooting by Croatians if it attempted to leave, 'because

16 you are our only hope.'"

17 Q. You just said that you were not shot at. Why?

18 A. That is correct; we weren't shot at, and we saw no weapons held by

19 these Croatians. They merely threatened to shoot us, and we believed that

20 they did probably have some weapons hidden somewhere where they could do

21 that. The shooting that happened in fact came from the heavy machine-gun

22 fire.

23 Q. Thank you. Do you know anything about the military plans,

24 disposition, and operations of the Croatian forces on the stretch from the

25 border with Montenegro to near the town of Dubrovnik?

Page 407

1 A. No.

2 Q. Did you warn the Croatian side of the risks that civilians and

3 their property were exposed to because of the military operations of the

4 Croatian forces?

5 A. We certainly made the Croatians aware of risks that would be

6 incurred if there were hostilities taken against JNA forces.

7 Q. You will not hold it against me if I say this, but what you have

8 just said is something I have not seen in any of your written reports

9 which you call your diaries or in any of these statements. That's why I

10 would like to know how real, serious, and persistent the warnings to the

11 Croatian side were in connection with cease-fire breaches or the

12 provocation of further hostilities.

13 A. They were certainly serious, and I think that in my notes, I did

14 in fact mention somewhere that in the event of any incident arising from

15 either side, we should be immediately informed and that no precipitate

16 action should be taken in the event of any accidental shootings.

17 Q. I would like to know whether in your official reports, that is the

18 ones you sent to Zagreb, you warned the headquarters of the monitoring

19 mission of the cease-fire breaches by the Croats.

20 A. We certainly -- they were warned in respect to my report that

21 there had been alleged breaches the cease-fire by the Croats. That's

22 stated in my -- in my diary.

23 Q. Did you have any feedback, response, or instruction sent to you,

24 or did you find out whether the mission had said something to the Croatian

25 government or somewhere at a higher level?

Page 408

1 A. I'm not aware as to what discussions had taken place at a higher

2 level.

3 Q. In your statement and during your examination-in-chief, you said

4 that on the 11th of October, 1991, you met for the first time with JNA

5 officers in the port of Zelenika and Montenegro and that this meeting was

6 attended by General Ruzinovski, Admiral Jokic, and Colonel Svicevic. Is

7 this correct?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. In your statement, you say -- just a moment, please, and I'll tell

10 you what paragraph it is in the English version. It's on page 3,

11 paragraph -- no, the second paragraph from the bottom of the page.

12 Counting from the bottom of the page, it's the second paragraph. Have you

13 found it?

14 A. Sorry, yes. Page 3.

15 Q. You say here, yes, that General Ruzinovski was the officer

16 commanding Operational Group 2. "Ironically, the meeting took place was

17 in a JNA military hospital which had a large Red Cross flag over the roof

18 of the building. It appeared that the regional headquarters of the JNA

19 was in fact in the hospital as we were ushered into the hospital for the

20 meeting. This may itself have been a breach of international law."

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. I'll then now ask you, do you know exactly where you were when you

23 attended this first meeting on the 11th of October?

24 A. We were given to understand that we were meeting at the

25 headquarters of the general. And we were also given to understand that

Page 409

1 this in fact was a hospital, which we assumed it was because of the big

2 Red Cross which was flying outside, on the roof of the building.

3 Q. Did you enter a compound? Did you pass through a ramp in order to

4 enter a military compound?

5 A. I don't recall precisely how we entered, whether it was over a

6 ramp or not. The building that we entered didn't contain medical wards,

7 and it was a conference room where this meeting was held.

8 Q. May I remind you you probably entered the port of Zelenika, you

9 sailed into it, and then you were taken to the military hospital in

10 Meljine, which is a large military compound which also contains the villa

11 of Josip Broz Tito within that large compound. And I assume that the

12 meeting room was in that villa and that that's where the meeting was held.

13 Would that correspond to what you remember of the meeting in 1991?

14 A. That is -- that could be correct.

15 Q. Then what you say about breaches of international law and having a

16 meeting in a hospital would not stand.

17 MR. WEINER: I'd object to that, Your Honour. Once again we're

18 into speculation, his speculation as to international law, and asking him

19 questions about whether or not this is in fact a breach. He's not the

20 witness to ask that question.

21 JUDGE PARKER: There is substance in that, Mr. Rodic. You may be

22 able to explore part way down that road, but having gone as far as you

23 have is going too far. If you could either move on or deal with some more

24 limited part of the subject.

25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. My last

Page 410

1 question was connected to the witness's statement, because the witness

2 stated in the last sentence of this paragraph: "It appeared that the

3 regional HQ of the JNA was in fact in the hospital as we were ushered into

4 the hospital for the meeting. This may itself have been a breach of

5 international law."

6 This was what the witness said in his statement, and after this

7 clarification about the venue of the meeting being in fact in the villa, I

8 asked the witness whether he would still abide by what he said or whether

9 he would desist from this statement.

10 JUDGE PARKER: I appreciate how you've got to where you've got.

11 You may want to have it confirmed by the witness whether the building with

12 the red cross on the roof was the building in which the meeting occurred

13 or whether it was in a villa that didn't have a red cross on the roof. I

14 would remind you that the witness, in his evidence, did not actually speak

15 about this subject and did not deal with the opinion that's set out in

16 this statement; it's your cross-examination that is taking him to that.

17 So is that -- I'm trying to help you to allow you to go as far as

18 can properly be taken. Yes.

19 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, I understand. Thank you, Your

20 Honour. I will then repeat Your Honour's question.

21 Q. The villa in which you held the meeting, did it have the red cross

22 on it or was the Red Cross flag on another building?

23 A. To the best of my recollection, it was actually on that building.

24 It may have been a villa, I can't say.

25 Q. Very well. During your stay in the Dubrovnik area after you met

Page 411

1 General Ruzinovski, who introduced himself as the officer commanding

2 Operational Group 2, did you know where his military command was, where

3 the headquarters was of this Operational Group 2 commanded by General

4 Ruzinovski?

5 A. We assumed it was where we had held the meeting, but that was an

6 assumption.

7 Q. Was your assumption valid for the entire period you spent in the

8 Dubrovnik mission?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. During your stay in Dubrovnik or in Zagreb, did you hear of a

11 place called Kumbor? It's also in Montenegro and near the places we have

12 just mentioned.

13 A. I have heard the name.

14 Q. Do you know that there was a navy command there?

15 A. I can't recall that.

16 Q. Can you tell us more about what General Ruzinovski told you when

17 he was telling you about the area of responsibility of Operational Group

18 2, that is, the territory on which the units of Operational Group 2 were?

19 A. According to my diary, he confirmed that he was responsible for an

20 area bounded by the Bay of Kotor in the south to Slano in the north and

21 Mostar in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

22 Q. Was the river Neretva mentioned?

23 A. I can't recall specifically, although my attention was drawn to

24 the fact that that river formed one of the boundaries.

25 Q. Now, I'm going to ask you whether now you have an idea about the

Page 412

1 size of the territory which was indicated to you by General Ruzinovski

2 along the Montenegrin border up to Mostar, up to the river Neretva, to

3 Slano, and down towards the sea. Do you now have any actual knowledge or

4 any idea about the actual size of that territory?

5 A. Not without looking at a map.

6 Q. Are you familiar with any particular data associated with this

7 stretch of territory measured in kilometres? Do you recall any such

8 information?

9 A. No, I don't. Our interest was really centred on Dubrovnik.

10 Q. With respect to the area of Dubrovnik where you were, do you know

11 how far the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina is?

12 A. Not very far.

13 Q. And this border towards Bosnia and Herzegovina, was it measured in

14 metres or kilometres relative to the Dubrovnik area?

15 A. Measured in kilometres.

16 Q. Well, do you know approximately? Was it 10, 20 or more?

17 A. I wouldn't like to hazard a guess.

18 Q. Do you consider that it was definitely more kilometres?

19 A. At its narrowest point, I can only guess that it was probably

20 about 20 kilometres, but I can't be certain.

21 Q. Do you know, during your stay with the mission in Dubrovnik, what

22 the disposition was or the points manned by JNA forces?

23 A. Only those in the Cavtat region.

24 Q. Where exactly in the Cavtat region? What towns, what places, what

25 villages?

Page 413

1 A. I can't say the towns and villages. All I can say is that we were

2 aware of the front line of the JNA forces around Cavtat, which effectively

3 was the southern end of the Cavtat -- of the Dubrovnik airport. There was

4 also lines which went around the hills by Komolac where the power station

5 had been destroyed.

6 Q. Since you've mentioned Komolac repeatedly in your statement, you

7 refer to that particular problem, so I'd like to know what your impression

8 of this was in terms of the cooperativeness and willingness of the army to

9 resolve the problem of Komolac, which is to say water and electricity

10 supply. Were they in earnest in favour of resolving that problem and did

11 they undertake measures in order to address it?

12 A. Yes, they did. They were in fact very cooperative from the

13 outset.

14 Q. Thank you. When you said that the team of European Community

15 Monitoring Mission came to this meeting at this villa, can you say exactly

16 who apart from you, Nolan, and Zak was also on this team? Were there any

17 other people?

18 A. Only our interpreter. Our interpreter was there.

19 Q. What is the name of your interpreter?

20 A. Misa.

21 Q. You also said that General Ruzinovski instructed Admiral Jokic to

22 meet with the Croatian delegation on that same afternoon on a military

23 vessel off Kotor Bay. Was this so?

24 A. Yes, that is so.

25 Q. Do you know what was precisely Admiral Jokic that he instructed to

Page 414

1 meet with you and with that delegation?

2 A. Do I know precisely -- I'm sorry, I don't quite understand that

3 question.

4 Q. Let me put it this way: Do you know what the position and

5 function of Admiral Jokic was at that time? What was he at the time?

6 A. I'm not aware of what he was at that time. We assumed that he was

7 second in command to General Ruzinovski, but also of course commanding the

8 naval forces.

9 Q. During your mission in Dubrovnik, did you -- do you know whether

10 the forces under the command of Admiral Jokic, which is naval and land

11 forces, were they also part of the cooperation with Dubrovnik?

12 A. Sorry, part of the cooperation with Dubrovnik? What do you mean?

13 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter corrects herself: Of the

14 operation around Dubrovnik.

15 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]

16 Q. I didn't say "cooperation," I said "the operation," the Dubrovnik

17 campaign.

18 A. Yes, we believed that they were.

19 Q. After Admiral Jokic had been ordered to hold the meeting with the

20 Dubrovnik Crisis Staff, in your statement you say on page 5 -- no, sorry,

21 on page 4, third paragraph from the top. You list the people on the

22 Croatian Crisis Staff, and you said the ECMM team returned to fetch the

23 Croatian negotiating team which comprised Zeljko Sikic, president of the

24 executive counsel; Pero Poljanic, mayor of Dubrovnik; Hrvoje Makan,

25 engineer; Misa Mihocevic, producer of the Dubrovnik Festival and ECMM

Page 415

1 interpreter.

2 Is it correct that the member of the negotiating team from the

3 Crisis Staff of Dubrovnik had a dual function as a negotiator of one side

4 and also as an interpreter for your mission which should have been neutral

5 in that -- in those talks?

6 A. No, he wasn't, to the best our knowledge, a member of the

7 Dubrovnik Crisis Committee, but he came as interpreter, and he's simply

8 listed there as the Croatian interpreter for the mission. So it may not

9 -- arguably that paragraph is not -- it's precise, but it's -- the

10 inflection is that Misa Mihocevic is not a member of the team from

11 Dubrovnik, he's actually the ECMM interpreter. And we put producer of the

12 Dubrovnik Festival just to indicate what his civilian function was.

13 Q. Why did you then also list Misa as belonging to the Croatian

14 negotiation team under 4, under number 4?

15 A. Well, he shouldn't -- he wasn't, in fact, part of the negotiating

16 team. When this was written, I didn't read it, but that was in fact the

17 case now you point it out. It probably would have been better to have put

18 a space under there and say that he was yet another member of the

19 Dubrovnik community who acted as our interpreter.

20 Q. When it came to conversations and contacts with the JNA and the

21 Croatian side, was Misa Mihocevic always present as your interpreter?

22 A. Yes, he was. He was our interpreter throughout the period.

23 Q. So you did not have another interpreter engaged from Zagreb nor

24 anyone specifically assigned to your mission?

25 A. No, we didn't.

Page 416

1 Q. In addition to these meetings at which Misa Mihocevic participated

2 together with you and the representatives of the Crisis Staff of Dubrovnik

3 and the JNA, what other interpreting services did he also perform for you?

4 A. Only general interpreting services when we needed to speak to the

5 hotel staff who perhaps didn't speak English, although most of them did,

6 but otherwise, he was simply acting as our interpreter in the course of

7 our negotiations with the JNA. The JNA had their own interpreter, of

8 course.

9 Q. Does this mean that he spent all his time with your mission, with

10 your team and you personally?

11 A. Most of his time. Not at night, of course, when he went home.

12 Q. Did you ever directly communicate by phone with any one of the

13 parties or was this done on your behalf by the interpreter?

14 A. No, it was always done on our behalf by the interpreter.

15 Q. Did you ever use any other interpreter during your stay there

16 apart from Misa?

17 A. No.

18 Q. In your statement, you also stated that at this meeting on the

19 vessel with Admiral Jokic, your mission sternly warned him that civilians

20 were getting wounded and --

21 A. Yes, that's correct. Civilians had been killed in the area of

22 Komolac.

23 Q. Also on that occasion you informed him that the Croatian military

24 presence in the city was either weak or nil. Can you tell us what you

25 meant by that? Can you explain a bit? Can you amplify on the Croatian

Page 417

1 military presence?

2 A. Yes, we advised the admiral that we'd seen little or no Croatian

3 military presence in the town. We'd seen no armed military personnel.

4 Q. What did the admiral reply? Did he tell you that he had different

5 information?

6 A. I can't recall the precise terms of the admiral's reply, but in

7 the course of our discussions throughout this period, the JNA did allege

8 that Dubrovnik was being used by armed Croatian military personnel and

9 that military operations were being directed from Dubrovnik, but this was

10 something we could not confirm.

11 Q. Was this the answer you gave to Admiral Jokic also?

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. Did Admiral Jokic give you guarantees that work to repair the

14 electricity and water supply facilities would start soon and they would

15 not be hindered?

16 A. Yes, that's correct. He agreed to secure the area around Komolac

17 to ensure that the electricity supplies and water supplies could be

18 repaired quickly.

19 Q. Did Admiral Jokic, prior to giving you such guarantees, call

20 anyone or did he say this to you personally?

21 A. I don't recall him actually calling anyone, but he did give this

22 assurance to us personally, because the assurance had already been given

23 by General Ruzinovski that the area would be secure.

24 Q. When you speak about the next meeting, you say that on the 12th of

25 October, Captain Milan Zec received you, waited for you at Cilipi airport.

Page 418

1 Was he there on behalf of the Admiral Jokic?

2 A. He appeared to be there on behalf of both Admiral Jokic and

3 General Ruzinovski.

4 Q. On what basis are you now mentioning General Ruzinovski? The fact

5 being that Captain Milan Zec is a naval officer and you knew that as well

6 as --

7 A. Absolutely. I knew that he was a naval officer, and of course our

8 liaison officer, appointed by General Ruzinovski, was also a naval

9 officer. But the captain was acting apparently on behalf of Admiral Jokic

10 when he handed a letter to the mayor soliciting a number of conditions

11 that they required to be met. But he also said to us that the general,

12 and that's referring to General Ruzinovski, had confirmed that he would

13 honour the agreement to continue with the repair of electrical supplies --

14 Q. Please do not read the statement before I indicate a specific part

15 of it.

16 Did Captain Zec put any ultimatum to the Croatian side in your

17 presence?

18 Would you be so kind as to close that statement, put it down.

19 A. The ultimatum that was put to the Croatian side was done in our

20 presence, yes.

21 Q. Why do you call this piece of paper on which something was written

22 an ultimatum? Do you know its content, and it is on that basis that you

23 call it an ultimatum, or was it the Croatian side that informed you that

24 it was an ultimatum?

25 A. I can't recall which side it was that said it was an ultimatum.

Page 419

1 It listed a number of conditions that were required to be met.

2 Q. Are you familiar with any of the content of that document or the

3 conditions which were to be met which was requested by the JNA?

4 A. I did not have a copy of that document, but if you want me to

5 simply recollect what I remember now, it was that the Crisis Committee

6 should surrender. That was the one thing that stuck in my mind. But as

7 to the other conditions, I cannot recall.

8 Q. Can you explain to me why it was not important enough for you to

9 jot it down in your daily log, in your diary? In particular, in view of

10 the fact that the other side experienced it as an ultimatum.

11 A. We didn't have a copy of that document. That was retained by the

12 Croatian side. So we merely noted the fact that an ultimatum had been

13 made.

14 Q. Why did you not then record the content of that document, because

15 it is very important, the content that you yourself just referred to.

16 A. It was important, but I don't recall the circumstances arising at

17 the time which meant that we didn't take a copy of it or weren't given a

18 copy of it by the Croatian side.

19 Q. Tell me, did General Ruzinovski designate Captain Sofronije

20 Jeremic --

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. -- to act as liaison officer?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. At this first meeting with Admiral Jokic, is it true that Jeremic,

25 Svicevic, the interpreter Uljarevic, so the naval officers that I referred

Page 420

1 to and this interpreter were present?

2 A. That's my understanding.

3 Q. I'm interested in a person that today you have not mentioned, and

4 you mention him in the statement, that is the Croatian army liaison

5 officer, Captain Ante Karaman. How can he be a liaison officer for the

6 Croatian army whereas to several of my questions -- to a number of my

7 questions you repeatedly answered that you didn't see any army on the

8 Croatian side at all.

9 A. We saw no -- we saw no members of the Croatian army. That's a

10 fact. Other than this particular captain who came with the Crisis

11 Committee.

12 Q. On that date, the 12th of October, Captain Zec told you that an

13 incident had happened in Ravno in Bosnia-Herzegovina where JNA soldiers

14 were killed and there were wounded, and on that occasion he handed over to

15 you a letter by General Ruzinovski with apologies for having to postpone

16 that meeting for the following day. Is that correct?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Was it clear to you why he was seeking a postponement of the

19 meeting?

20 A. No, because the incident that occurred in Ravno in

21 Bosnia-Herzegovina was a long way away, and we didn't see the relevance of

22 that particular incident to the meetings that we wished to hold with the

23 -- between the Dubrovnik Crisis Committee and the JNA.

24 Q. Did they inform you on that occasion with the problems that the

25 commanding officers had with the troops because of that incident and that

Page 421

1 those were the reasons why the meeting was being postponed?

2 A. I don't recall problems the commanding officers had with their

3 troops.

4 Q. At that meeting on the 12th of October, were you informed of the

5 fact that the blockade of Dubrovnik was actually on in order to prevent

6 arms and ammunitions from being imported into the city, from entering

7 Dubrovnik?

8 A. I believe that is the case.

9 Q. In view of your previous statements about Dubrovnik and according

10 to your knowledge, would it be -- would this be quite legitimate, to

11 prevent the importation of arms and ammunitions into a protected city?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And during your mission in Dubrovnik, were you informed or was

14 there any -- did you have any reports about the breaches of these -- of

15 the blockade with a view to arming people inside?

16 A. We were informed about two incidents with ferries which were

17 refused entry into Dubrovnik, but that was not because of -- that they

18 carried any arms or ammunition, I believe. One of them was because they

19 were carrying journalists who were not accredited, which was a requirement

20 at that time by the Yugoslavian authorities. There may have been some

21 incidents in the countryside, but I believe not at sea.

22 Q. If I'm correct, you said that you had occasion to travel or sail

23 by boat, to be stopped by the navy for control. Did they tell you what

24 they were controlling and why they were stopping you?

25 A. They didn't specifically tell me why they were stopping us, but we

Page 422

1 were made aware by the captain of the ferry that they were being stopped

2 -- that we were being stopped to check our bona fides and to ensure that

3 we were not carrying any unauthorised supplies or personnel into

4 Dubrovnik. And on the second occasion, leaving Dubrovnik, we were

5 stopped, and I was told then that we were stopped because we were carrying

6 men out of Dubrovnik as refugees. The ship had about 3.000 civilians on

7 it, and we were turned round then by the JNA and sent back to Dubrovnik to

8 discharge the men that had -- that were on the ferry.

9 Q. These were military-aged men?

10 A. Some. Some, certainly.

11 Q. During these checks, were the boat crews asked whether they had

12 any weapons or ammunition? Did the army ask those questions?

13 A. I'm not aware what questions were actually asked of the crew of

14 the vessels.

15 Q. Were you able to conclude that the army was checking vessels in

16 order to make sure they weren't importing weapons and ammunition into

17 Dubrovnik?

18 A. That was one of our conclusions, yes.

19 Q. Thank you. At the meeting of the 13th of October, you mentioned

20 that at that meeting you were handed a letter from General Ruzinovski in

21 which he informed you that he had been transferred and that he would be

22 replaced by General Pavle Strugar. Is this correct?

23 A. That is correct, yes.

24 Q. As this letter was handed to you on the 13th of October, do you

25 know whether the handover was actually carried out on the 13th or later?

Page 423

1 A. No.

2 MR. WEINER: I'm sorry to interrupt, Your Honour. It has nothing

3 to do with the questioning, but we had advised the legal officer that at

4 certain times the witness would request juice or some food because of a

5 health condition, and I just want to make sure that he's -- everything's

6 okay.

7 JUDGE PARKER: Before we deal with that, Mr. Stringer, could I

8 ask, Mr. Rodic, where you see yourself in the cross-examination. Have you

9 nearly finished?

10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I am about two-thirds of

11 my way through, but I may be able to shorten my examination. In any case,

12 I am prepared to take a break or to continue tomorrow, because the general

13 also has been sitting here for quite a long time.

14 JUDGE PARKER: Yes. It seems to me that the cross-examination is

15 going on to a length that we may not be able to finish with Mr. Stringer

16 and finish with the next witness tomorrow, which is creating a problem.

17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if we were to continue

18 the cross-examination tomorrow I would do my very best to shorten the

19 remainder of my cross-examination and to focus on essential questions.

20 JUDGE PARKER: I'm very glad to hear that, Mr. Rodic, because I

21 think this afternoon, while you have dealt with many significant matters,

22 you've also dealt with others that are not significant, and it's taken a

23 long time, and it will be essential that we try and avoid that much time

24 on unimportant matters. There are significant issues in this trial, and

25 if we can focus on those, I think it will be in the best interests of your

Page 424

1 client as well as in the best interests of finishing this matter with as

2 much expedition as possible.

3 Now, Mr. Stringer, if I could ask of you whether you feel the need

4 for a break at this moment.

5 THE WITNESS: I'm all right, actually, at the moment, Your Honour,

6 thank you.

7 JUDGE PARKER: Right. That being the case, I think we might press

8 on for just a little longer, Mr. Rodic. I detect that your client is not

9 in any particular distress from what I can see, so that we will continue

10 for a little while. We did arrange that your client would go back at

11 6:00, and we'll try and keep to that. But if you could now focus on what

12 is important to your case, I'd be grateful.

13 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

14 Q. As you have confirmed, I will just repeat, you don't know whether

15 the changeover of generals was carried out on the same day as you were

16 handed the letter.

17 A. No, that's right.

18 Q. I will now ask you whether you personally ever saw General

19 Strugar.

20 A. No, I did not.

21 Q. Have you ever personally talked to General Strugar?

22 A. No.

23 Q. During your mission in Dubrovnik, did you know exactly where

24 General Strugar was?

25 A. No.

Page 425

1 Q. When you mentioned the shifts in the front line for some -- by

2 some 800 metres, it was the Croatian forces that advised you of this, if

3 I'm not wrong.

4 A. That is correct.

5 Q. Did you receive a detailed explanation by the JNA in connection

6 with this shift?

7 A. There had been a shooting some way behind the JNA lines, and they

8 wanted to improve their tactical position.

9 Q. Did Admiral Jokic postpone a meeting for this reason, because it

10 was necessary to find people to work at Komolac, and he had a problem in

11 explaining to the troops what had happened in that incident? Was that how

12 it was?

13 A. That's not as I understood it.

14 Q. I will now ask you to look at the statement, point 42. That's on

15 page 9 of your statement. In paragraph 42, the sentence where you say:

16 "In the circumstances, the admiral had ordered the meeting scheduled for

17 1200 hours the following day to be postponed by 24 hours and also the

18 commencement of electricity repair at Komolac because the troops needed to

19 have the incident explained to them and why the safety of the workers

20 could not be guaranteed."

21 Is this your statement?

22 A. Yes, and my immediate recollection, probably, was inaccurate. I

23 stand by what was said in the actual statement.

24 MR. WEINER: Your Honour, that's not the complete statement. If

25 you look at the next sentence, it goes on that they do in fact plan a

Page 426

1 meeting, in the next sentence. I request that the full quote be read.

2 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I was just about to do so, yes. It

3 goes on to say: "We asked that a meeting be arranged between monitors,

4 the liaison officer, and the admiral if possible, and this was agreed for

5 1100 hours Monday the 14th of October."

6 Q. Is this correct?

7 A. Yes, that's correct.

8 Q. Is it correct that at the meeting of the 14th of October the JNA

9 representatives were only Sofronije Jeremic, the liaison officer, and his

10 interpreter? Would you please not look at the statement.

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. In relation to the letter you received on the 13th of October in

13 the evening, how much time elapsed before you left Dubrovnik?

14 A. Before we left Dubrovnik for the following meeting.

15 Q. I meant when you left from Dubrovnik for Zagreb.

16 A. Oh. Two and a half days.

17 Q. Is it correct that you asked the liaison officer if possible to

18 meet with General Strugar in that period?

19 A. That is correct.

20 Q. Is it correct that this meeting never took place in that

21 two-and-a-half-day period that you were in Dubrovnik?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. When you were explaining to the JNA representatives that you had

24 an obligation to monitor all cease-fires and all activities that were a

25 risk for the cease-fire, did you ever have any kind of information from

Page 427

1 the Croatian liaison officer, Ante Karaman, that their side had breached

2 the cease-fire?

3 A. No. We only had an assurance from the Croatians that there had

4 been no breaches from Dubrovnik, but to the best of my recollection we

5 didn't see the Croatian liaison officer Ante Karaman after the first

6 meeting that we had with him.

7 Q. Who on the Croatian side gave you guarantees or assured you that

8 the Croatians had not breached the cease-fire?

9 A. This came from the Crisis Committee itself.

10 Q. Can you give us any names? Who from the Crisis Committee informed

11 you of this?

12 A. I can't give names at this stage. I can't recall them.

13 Q. Did you ever ask for any kind of meeting with the commander of the

14 Croatian forces with a view to successfully carrying out the cease-fire

15 operation?

16 A. No, because it appeared that the problems arose with the --

17 between the Crisis Committee, the Dubrovnik civilian population, and the

18 JNA, not the Croatian army as such. And so the discussions and

19 negotiations were between the Dubrovnik community and the JNA.

20 Q. When speaking of monitoring the cease-fire, I see the JNA as an

21 armed force on the one side and on the other side there should be the

22 Croatian police and the military formations which were armed, not the

23 population, the citizens of Dubrovnik. I'm asking whether you asked to

24 see the commander of the other side or to contact him with a view to

25 establishing and maintaining a cease-fire and prevent breaches, just as

Page 428

1 you did in the case of the JNA.

2 A. No, because our understanding was that it was the Dubrovnik Crisis

3 Committee that were in charge of all matters concerning Dubrovnik and that

4 there were no Croatian military presence there.

5 Q. Are you claiming that in the city of Dubrovnik there was no

6 Croatian army, no Croatian armed formations --

7 A. We saw --

8 Q. -- defenders of Dubrovnik or whatever you wish to call them?

9 A. No. We saw none, no uniformed military personnel within the city.

10 The only people that we saw were armed were the civilian police, and on

11 one occasion there were about three or four, maybe five civilians with

12 shotguns and rifles protecting one of the entrances to the Old City when I

13 tried to go in late at night one day, but no military presence as such.

14 Q. These armed civilians, from whom were they defending the entrance

15 to the Old City?

16 A. From the JNA or the regular Serb militia.

17 Q. We're speaking about the Old Town, the town of Dubrovnik.

18 A. That is correct, yes.

19 Q. And where were the members of the Serbian militia while these

20 armed civilians were protecting the entrances to the Old Town?

21 A. In the hills around the town. There were a number of civilians

22 who had been evacuated from the villages in the vicinity of Dubrovnik.

23 Q. I must ask you, were you ever in the Old Town in Dubrovnik?

24 A. Yes. We went inside the Old Town.

25 Q. Can you tell me where exactly you saw these armed civilians

Page 429

1 protecting the entrance to the old town.

2 A. It was in the middle of the night when we sent to send a fax to

3 the mission in Zagreb, and we were told that there was a fax facility

4 which I think operated by satellite from within the walls of the Old City,

5 and we were escorted there by the Croatian police, and at the gate -- I

6 can't explain precisely where in the walls the gate was, but there was a

7 gate with a kind of old-fashioned wooden portico, and just there there

8 were these three or four civilians with old shotguns and things. Not an

9 effective fighting force, I must say, it was just a bit of a Dad's Army

10 thing.

11 Q. In relation to these armed civilians in the Old Town, do you know

12 where the closest JNA forces were, what the distance was between them?

13 A. I should say probably five to ten kilometres, maybe closer. I

14 could not be precise because we were merely told that they were in the

15 hills that surround the city.

16 Q. If I tell you that it is indisputable from Croatian sources and

17 the command of the defence of Dubrovnik - and when I say indisputable I

18 mean that there were defenders, as they call them, of Dubrovnik or the

19 Croatian army and that there were even heavy weapons, weapons stronger

20 than infantry weapons - I'm referring to mortars. I'm just telling you

21 what is beyond dispute and that this was in the town of Dubrovnik. Does

22 this mean anything to you?

23 A. No, because we saw none.

24 Q. Did the Croatian side ever mention anything like this to you?

25 A. No, they didn't.

Page 430

1 Q. When you mentioned -- when you mentioned the situation with regard

2 to the evacuation of refugees from Dubrovnik towards the north and the

3 south, you expressed concern that the JNA wanted to expel the Croatian

4 population from Dubrovnik. Is this correct or justified?

5 A. We expressed some concern that there was this possibility. We

6 weren't entirely clear, I think, at the time, what the reason was. At

7 this point in time, I can't really elaborate on that.

8 Q. If we use the term "refugees," somebody is trying to flee from a

9 place, isn't it logical for that person to leave? Whether the place is

10 called Dubrovnik or The Hague, that's immaterial if people want to leave a

11 place.

12 A. Yes, that's correct.

13 Q. Were all the inhabitants of Dubrovnik refugees or was there a

14 number of people who had fled from the villages they lived in and they

15 wanted to continue on their way from Dubrovnik?

16 A. Not all the inhabitants of Dubrovnik were refugees, of course, but

17 there were a number of people who had been displaced from their villages,

18 and they had accommodated themselves either in the Old City or in

19 villages, including Cavtat, where they felt that they were safe or safer.

20 Q. Since the city of Dubrovnik already had problems with water and

21 electricity supplies and there were large numbers of people who had fled

22 from other places around Dubrovnik, this conversation with the JNA

23 concerning the evacuation of the refugees who had come to Dubrovnik and

24 who were to go to the north or south towards Croatia or Montenegro, wasn't

25 it an effort to take care of these people rather than moving all the

Page 431

1 population of Dubrovnik out of the city? Can you make that distinction?

2 A. That is a possibility.

3 Q. I'm asking you this because the concern you mentioned in

4 connection with moving out the population of Dubrovnik is something I have

5 not found in any of the reports, and this would have been a very important

6 matter of which you would certainly have informed the mission in Zagreb;

7 isn't that correct?

8 A. That's right, but the report was really basically factual.

9 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic.

10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE PARKER: Is that a convenient time now to interrupt your

12 cross-examination?

13 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.

14 JUDGE PARKER: I hope it will be possible overnight for you to

15 focus more tightly.

16 I must ask you to return in the morning -- tomorrow afternoon, I'm

17 sorry, Mr. Stringer, at 2.15 again.

18 Mr. Weiner, there was some matter that you wished to raise. Is it

19 necessary to do it now?

20 MR. WEINER: One -- I can raise one in the morning, but one might

21 be of aid to the Court concerning the 92 bis motion.


23 MR. WEINER: Mr. Kaufman could address that matter, please.

24 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Kaufman.

25 MR. KAUFMAN: Your Honours, on the 30th of September, 2003, the

Page 432

1 Prosecution submitted an application pursuant to Rule 92 bis of the Rules

2 of Procedure and Evidence. As Your Honours are fully aware, the Rule 92

3 bis is a time-saving device which allows the Court to accept evidence in

4 lieu of oral testimony, assuming that there is no objection from the

5 Defence.

6 In the application on the 30th of September, the Prosecution

7 requested that 17 witnesses' evidence be adduced pursuant to Rule 92 bis.

8 Since that date and in the last filing to the Court, one witness was

9 mentioned in the last list of witnesses, whose name is Nikola Jovic, who

10 was not included in that original list of witnesses. The Prosecution

11 would request to add that witness to the list of witnesses pursuant to

12 Rule 92 bis. I seized the opportunity prior to the start of the hearing

13 today to speak to my learned friend Mr. Petrovic, and he agrees to allow

14 the Prosecution to add that name to the list orally.

15 So in lieu of written motion, Your Honours, I would request that

16 the name Nikola Jovic be added to the list of witnesses pursuant to Rule

17 92 bis.

18 If I may just add, this particular witness fulfils the

19 requirements of Rule 92 bis in that he does not give evidence which

20 relates to the acts and conduct of the accused. Furthermore, his evidence

21 will be of a cumulative nature such that other witnesses who you will hear

22 from in this court will amply adduce the same type of evidence which will

23 be adduced by Mr. Nikola Jovic.

24 I have copies of the witness statement of Mr. Nikola Jovic. I

25 offer them to the Court since when we requested that the 17 witnesses be

Page 433

1 adduced pursuant to Rule 92 bis their witness statements were also

2 tendered to the Court. So I can offer those to the Court now.

3 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much. I take it, Mr. Petrovic, you

4 do not object to that name being added to the application orally.

5 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I only wish to avoid

6 any misunderstanding. The Defence agrees, in order to save time, to

7 present the request orally. However, the Defence opposes the essence of

8 the motion, that is that the witness should be a 92 bis witness. And the

9 reasons for this are contained in our reply to this motion on the one

10 hand, and on the other hand, I would like to ask Your Honours for

11 instructions as to the deadline by which we should present our arguments

12 on the merits of this motion, whether you wish us to use the general

13 14-day deadline or whether you wish us -- whether you wish to alter this

14 in view of the fact that the recess is ahead of us. So please give me

15 your instructions in this respect.

16 I can now mention some of the basic reasons why we oppose having

17 this witness testify as a 92 bis witness. Out of two dead and three

18 wounded with the deaths of whom our defendant is charged, one of the

19 wounded is Nikola Jovic, so that including him as a 92 bis witness would

20 directly affect the right of our client to have the evidence against him

21 presented in public and directly. I only ask Your Honours now to give me

22 instructions as to the deadline by which I should submit my written filing

23 in this respect.

24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Petrovic. I take it you mean your

25 filing only in respect of the witness Jovic.

Page 434

1 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, because we have

2 already responded with respect to all the other witnesses put forward on

3 the 30th of September, as Your Honour knows.

4 JUDGE PARKER: My expectation is that it would be of assistance to

5 the Trial Chamber if it were possible for you to have filed your written

6 opposition submissions by the commencement after the break, that is, by

7 the 12th of January. Is that feasible?

8 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Thank you very

9 much.

10 JUDGE PARKER: Is there anything further, Mr. Kaufman, on that?

11 MR. KAUFMAN: No, Your Honour.

12 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. We will then adjourn.

13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.05 p.m.,

14 to be reconvened on Monday, the 12th day of January,

15 2004, at 2.15 p.m.