1 ---Tuesday, 16th June, 1998
2 (In open session)
3 --- Upon commencing at 9.07 a.m.
4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, ladies and
5 gentlemen. Good morning the interpreters and the
6 technicians. Are you ready? Good morning. Mr.
7 Dubuisson, please introduce today's matter.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, today matter is
9 IT-95-14/1-T. The Prosecutor versus Zlatko
10 Aleksovski. Thank you very much.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Would the Prosecution
12 please introduce itself for the record, please.
13 MR. NIEMANN: If Your Honours please, my name
14 is Mr. Niemann and I appear with my colleagues Mr.
15 Meddegoda and Ms. Erasmus for the Prosecution.
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much. Mr.
17 Mikulicic, please introduce yourself for the Defence.
18 MR. MIKULICIC: Good morning Your Honours, my
19 name is Goran Mikulicic and together with my colleague
20 Mr. Joka I represent the Defence.
21 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you. We're going to
22 continue then with today's case. Mr. Mikulicic you
23 have the floor.
24 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour. The
25 Defence would like to call Dr. Zvonmir Stipac.
1 (The witness entered court)
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, sir. Do you
3 hear me? Before you are seated, I would ask that you
4 read the solemn declaration that is being shown to you
6 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
7 speak the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the
9 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Please be seated. You are
10 now going to respond to questions that will be put to
11 you by Mr. Mikulicic, who is there. Thank you.
12 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Examined by Mr. Mikulicic
14 Q. You are now appearing before this Tribunal as
15 witness for Defence. As Defence counsel, I would like
16 to put to you a couple of questions and I would kindly
17 ask you to respond to the best of your recollection.
18 Dr. Stipac, could you tell us your personal data, where
19 and when were you born?
20 A. My name is Zvonmir Stipac and I was born in
21 Zenica on the 8th of June, 1961.
22 Q. Could you tell us, please, where did you go
23 to school?
24 A. I completed elementary school in Busovaca and
25 I graduated from the school of medical faculty at
2 Q. Where did you complete your secondary
4 A. In Vitez.
5 Q. What is your ethnic background and what is
6 your religion?
7 A. My ethnic background is Croatian and I am a
8 Catholic, Roman Catholic.
9 Q. Dr. Stipac, you said you completed elementary
10 school in Busovaca and secondary school and grammar
11 school in Vitez, where did you live at that time?
12 A. Throughout that time I lived in Busovaca.
13 Q. Since you were born?
14 A. Since I was born.
15 Q. You said you graduated from the faculty of
16 medicine in Sarajevo, where were you employed after
18 A. I found a job at the health centre in
20 Q. In what year was that?
21 A. In 1993. This is when I begin my internship,
22 at the beginning of '93, in January.
23 Q. As a physician, do you have any
25 A. No, I am currently having my specialisation,
1 I am specialising in gynaecology and obstetrics.
2 Q. Dr. Stipac, what kind of job did you have at
3 the medical centre in Busovaca? Did you work for any
4 particular department or did you provide services to
5 patients in general?
6 A. Which period do you have in mind?
7 Q. When you were initially employed and after
9 A. So from the beginning of conflict I was, I
10 worked mostly for the emergency department and I would
11 most often be on night duty.
12 Q. Dr. Stipac, the health centre in Busovaca is
13 a medical institution which is responsible for which
15 A. It covers the territory of the Municipality
16 of Busovaca.
17 Q. How many people, approximately, use services
18 at your medical centre?
19 A. Well, before the war it was roughly 20.000
20 and during the conflict somewhat less and then
21 including refugees, perhaps 15.000.
22 Q. Do you remember how many physicians were
23 there in the first half of 1993? That is how many were
24 employed at the medical centre in Busovaca?
25 A. As for the first half of the year 1993, I can
1 tell you that there were very few physicians. Those
2 who were employed did not actually work, some of them
3 did not actually work, so there were may be two or
4 three physicians in total. As for paramedical staff, I
5 can't give you exact figures.
6 Q. Dr. Stipac, what was the situation with the
7 medical equipment in the first half of 1993 and prior
8 to that in 1992, what was it at the medical centre in
9 Busovaca, what kind of medical protection was your
10 centre able to offer at the time?
11 A. At that time, it was mostly a medical
12 institution for primary health care. We had one
13 specialist, a gynaecologist, and that was all. We had
14 an old x-ray machine, an old ECG machine and we had a
15 laboratory, of course, but that was all.
16 Q. Did you have any wing where you could admit
17 patients for treatment at the health centre?
18 A. No, we did not have such possibilities.
19 Q. And when it was necessary for you to provide
20 hospital treatment to a patient, what would you do? I
21 am referring to the same time period, 1992, and the
22 first half of 1993?
23 A. We would refer patients to the Nova Bila
24 hospital. It was a hospital that was located in a
25 religious institution.
1 Q. In a church?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. So it was a makeshift medical institution, am
4 I right?
5 A. Yes, that's correct.
6 Q. This all happened in the first half of 1993,
7 but what was the situation in the second half of
8 1992, which hospital would you refer them to?
9 A. We would refer them to the regional hospital
10 in Zenica.
11 Q. Do you remember in -- when was it that the
12 last patient or last patients were referred to the
13 medical centre in Zenica in an ambulance car?
14 A. I believe it was during the conflict.
15 Q. Could you be more specific and if you cannot
16 give us the exact date, if you could just tell us in
17 what month it was?
18 A. I think it was in late January, 1993.
19 Q. Could you describe the situation, the
20 circumstances under which that patient was transferred
21 to the medical centre in Zenica and if you can tell us
22 what happened on that particular occasion?
23 A. We had a number of injured, wounded patients,
24 people who were injured during the conflict and they
25 were transported in one of our ambulance cars to the
1 hospital in Zenica. On the way back, the vehicle was
2 requisitioned and the driver was harassed. And after
3 that we no longer sent patients to that medical
5 Q. When you say that the vehicle was
6 requisitioned and the driver was harassed, do you know
7 who was it that requisitioned the vehicle and harassed
8 the driver?
9 A. Those were the fighters of the army of
11 Q. This ambulance that you used to transport
12 patients from Busovaca to Zenica, did they have any
13 signs on it? Did it have any signs on it?
14 A. Yes, the vehicle had a Red Cross sign and it
15 was written, Busovaca Health Centre on it.
16 Q. After this vehicle was requisitioned, how
17 many vehicles did you still have at the health centre
18 in Busovaca?
19 A. I don't know exactly how many, I believe
20 there was only one vehicle that was in good condition,
21 but I am not sure, one, or maybe two. But very often
22 the vehicles wouldn't be in good condition because they
23 were quite old.
24 Q. As far as you can remember, did you have
25 enough spare parts and fuel for these vehicles during
1 the first half of 1993? So I am still referring to the
2 period of when the armed conflict broke out on the
3 territory of the Municipality of Busovaca.
4 A. In January we were still receiving fuel from
5 reserves that could be found at the municipality.
6 After that, it was getting difficult, so when we had a
7 number of injured people, we would usually have to wait
8 for two or three of them so that we can transport them
9 to hospital.
10 Q. Dr. Stipac, do you remember the beginning of
11 the conflict on the territory of the Busovaca
13 A. Yes, I do. The conflict started on Sunday,
14 on the 5th. And it lasted, I am not quite sure, but I
15 believe it was for about ten days. This was the first
16 conflict. And a week later, at the beginning of
17 February, another conflict broke out. And, in total, I
18 think that one can say that the conflict lasted for
19 about one month with several lapses.
20 Q. You've mentioned the date, the 5th of
21 January, 1993, and you indicated that it was the
22 beginning of the conflict on the territory of the
23 Busovaca municipality, do you have any particular event
24 in mind that made you pick that specific date?
25 A. On that day, I was at home and at around 6.00
1 a.m., I woke up, I heard a loud explosion, detonation,
2 coming from the direction of Kacuni. And later on I
3 heard that Ivica Petrovic had been brought to the
4 medical centre. And another body, a body of an unknown
5 person. Two bodies, therefore, have been brought from
6 that area.
7 Q. Do you know exactly what happened?
8 A. As far as the area of Kacuni is concerned, I
9 think that these people were ambushed by the BiH
10 soldiers. Petrovic was a policeman. They were
11 attacked and later they were killed. Petrovic was
12 wounded and then he was stabbed to death with a knife.
13 And this other person, I think was killed as a result
14 of explosion, but I don't remember exact details.
15 Q. Could you tell us more about that, do you
16 know where exactly they were attacked?
17 A. I don't know the exact location, but I
18 believe it was in the area of Kacuni.
19 Q. Yes, but it was at their homes or on the
21 A. No, they were ambushed and attacked on the
23 Q. Did you personally see these two bodies?
24 A. I only saw Petrovic's corpse, I didn't see
25 the other one.
1 Q. Dr. Stipac, at that time, was there a morgue
2 in Busovaca?
3 A. We didn't have any on that day, but because
4 the conflict had broken out, we had to arrange, we had
5 to find something, so we did have a makeshift morgue,
6 which was first located near the post office and then
7 later on it was moved to the forestry office.
8 Q. Does that mean that the morgue was not part
9 of the medical centre in Busovaca?
10 A. Yes, that's correct.
11 Q. Dr. Stipac, you were working as a physician
12 at the medical centre in Busovaca, could you tell us in
13 general terms how many patients were treated at the
14 Busovaca medical centre before the conflict?
15 A. Do you mean daily?
16 Q. Yes.
17 A. I don't know the exact number.
18 Q. And after the conflict broke out, could you
19 tell us how many patients were treated at that time?
20 A. Well, at that time, we had a large number of
21 patients. We sometimes had as many as 200 patients a
22 day, mostly civilians, but also wounded soldiers.
23 Q. You've mentioned wounded soldiers, these were
24 the soldiers of which army?
25 A. They were the soldiers of the Croatian
1 Defence Council, of course.
2 Q. The HVO you mean?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Did you ever notice amongst the wounded
5 soldiers any one with insignia of the HV?
6 A. No, no, I never saw a soldier of the Croatian
8 Q. As a patient, but did you ever see Croatian
9 soldiers in the area, in Busovaca in the Town of
11 A. No, as far as I know there were no soldiers
12 of the Croatian army on the territory of Busovaca
14 Q. I wanted to ask you if you saw any, if you
15 ever saw any?
16 A. No, no, I never saw any.
17 Q. Dr. Stipac, during the second half of the
18 month of January, 1993, you mentioned that you had duty
19 service at your institution, could you describe how it
21 A. You mean after the conflict?
22 Q. Yes, after the beginning of the conflict.
23 A. Well, it was difficult to organise it because
24 of the number of physicians that were available.
25 During the first ten days of the conflict, Dr.
1 Bernardica Mioc was there on duty, I believe, but after
2 that she left for Zenica. And then there were only
3 three of us left. Dr. Petrovic was ill at the time, so
4 she mostly worked during the morning and I worked the
5 night shift at the beginning, especially at the
6 emergency ward. And sometimes, especially if the
7 conflict was fierce, I would be there all the time.
8 There was also Dr. Raos who would work every two or
9 three days for 24 hours.
10 Q. What about Dr. Srdana Markovic, was she there
11 as well at the time?
12 A. Yes, I forgot about her.
13 Q. So there were four of you at the time, four
15 A. Yes, you're correct, during the first months.
16 Q. Dr. Stipac, how many physicians and nurses
17 would work in one shift?
18 A. One shift usually included one physician on
19 duty and three nurses on average.
20 Q. You've indicated a large number of patients
21 that were treated at your health centre, given the
22 situation, did you treat your patients properly in the
23 administrative sense, would you always check their
24 medical insurance card or not?
25 A. No, at that time, there was no administration
1 at all. We simply worked with everyone who would come
2 to the institution without any particular checks.
3 Q. Am I correct in thinking that at the time you
4 offered medical help without previously checking
5 whether that the patient had medical insurance or not?
6 A. Yes, you're correct.
7 Q. Dr. Stipac, do you remember the structure,
8 the national composition, the ethnic composition of the
9 people who used your services?
10 A. You're referring to the month of January?
11 Q. The month of January, February, the first
12 half of the year in 1993, was that composition of
13 patients different as opposed to the situation prior to
14 the war? Were there any changes that took place in the
16 A. Yes, because prior to the conflict, Bosniaks,
17 Muslims, that is, had mainly left the Town of
18 Busovaca. Not the territory of the Busovaca
19 municipality in general, but the town itself. There
20 were 5 or 10 per cent Muslims left in the area. The
21 rest were Croats.
22 Q. Dr. Stipac, did you make any difference as to
23 the standards that were applied while providing medical
24 services? Did you differentiate between patients on
25 the basis of their nationality?
1 A. I don't know about that because I know that
2 there is only one way, one proper way to treat people.
3 As for differentiating, I am not quite clear as to what
4 you wanted to ask me.
5 Q. Were there any differences in treatment of
6 people on the basis of their ethnic background?
7 A. No, such a situation is simply unthinkable to
8 me, and I couldn't differentiate, discriminate amongst
9 the people on the basis of their nationality or
11 Q. Dr. Stipac, could you please tell us, if you
12 remember, what was the ethnic structure of the staff at
13 the Busovaca health centre towards the end of 1992 and
14 in early 1993, that is about the time when you got the
15 job there?
16 A. Well, about half of them were Bosnias,
17 Muslims, a little less than 50 percent. Also a little
18 less than 50 percent were Croats, and there were a few
19 Serbs, a few of them, perhaps five to ten percent.
20 Q. A moment ago you mentioned that on the eve of
21 the conflict Muslims began to leave the territory of
22 Busovaca. Could you also feel it at the health centre,
23 that is, did they also leave or did they continue with
24 the health centre?
25 A. On the eve of the outbreak of the conflict, a
1 day or two perhaps, Bosniaks, Muslims left, that is,
2 did not turn up for work at all.
3 Q. How did you -- what did you think of this
4 situation at the time?
5 A. Well, the situation was rather vague -- it
6 was rather muted a few days before the conflict,
7 because the Bosniaks, Muslims were leaving in large
8 numbers. The territory, one could see it with the
9 naked eye, they were saying they were going to attend a
10 fair or something. There were different explanations.
11 But it was quite evident that something was about to
12 happen or something was afoot somewhere. But most of
13 us had no idea what.
14 Q. When the conflict broke out, did you relate
15 that particular phenomenon with the outbreak of armed
17 A. You mean after the conflict broke out?
18 Q. Yes, I mean after. Did you somehow associate
19 this departure of Muslims from the area with the
20 outbreak of the conflict?
21 A. Well, yes, clearly. Mostly able-bodied men
22 remained in the territory of the municipality, whereas
23 women and children were all gone from the municipality.
24 Q. Dr. Stipac, will you tell us if you are
25 familiar with the Kaonik facility in the vicinity of
2 A. Yes, I am. It is a former ammunition depot
3 of the Territorial Defence, the depot of the former
5 Q. Since you mentioned the former JNA, could you
6 tell us if in sometime in April '92 the JNA bombed
7 Busovaca. Do you remember that?
8 A. Of course I do remember it.
9 Q. And what happened at that time with regard to
10 the health centre?
11 A. The health centre was then hit by missiles,
12 so part of the ground floor was destroyed. Also part
13 of the gynaecological wing, that is the gynaecological
14 surgery, was destroyed, and water piping in the ground
15 floor. And we were left without electricity and water
16 supply. Other buildings, other things were also
17 shelled, but this concerned the health centre.
18 Q. Let's go back to Kaonik, that is the former
19 JNA facility. Do you remember if patients, that is
20 people seeking health services, came to the health
21 centre from that particular facility after the outbreak
22 of the conflict?
23 A. You mean JNA members?
24 Q. No, I am not talking about JNA members. I am
25 talking about the end of January '93.
1 A. They did. They began to come towards the end
2 of January and until about, I don't know, sometime
3 early February until they were released.
4 Q. Tell us, in principle, what complaints did
5 those patients who came from Kaonik have? Do you
6 remember that?
7 A. Those were mostly some chronic disorders,
8 usually chronic hypertension patients, stomach or
9 duodenal ulcer. You know, these are stress situations
10 which exacerbate such borderline diseases. There was
11 some infections and some things, but nothing really to
12 talk about, at least from the medical point of view.
13 Q. Do you remember who brought those patients to
14 the health centre in Busovaca?
15 A. They were escorted by guards, and very often
16 there was also Mr. Aleksovski accompanying them.
17 Q. You have mentioned Mr. Aleksovski. So I must
18 ask you, have you met him personally?
19 A. Yes, I did.
20 Q. Could you recognise him if you saw him today?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Do you, perhaps, see Mr. Aleksovski in this
24 A. Yes. This is the gentleman behind you, the
25 gentleman behind you.
1 MR. MIKULICIC: For the record, the witness
2 identified the accused as the man sitting behind the
3 Defence bench.
4 Q. Dr. Stipac, when did you meet Mr. Aleksovski
5 for the first time? Do you remember?
6 A. I don't remember the date, but it could have
7 been the end of January or early February, sometime
8 around that. I don't know the exact date.
9 Q. You mentioned the beginning of the conflict
10 in the Municipality of Busovaca, which is the 21st of
11 January. So as against that date, the beginning of the
12 conflict, could you say whether you met Aleksovski --
13 when did you meet Mr. Aleksovski? Was it before that
14 particular date or was it after it?
15 A. It was after it, after the 25th. So it must
16 have been on one of the ten days after that. I did not
17 know him before the conflict.
18 Q. Dr. Stipac, did Mr. Aleksovski visit to the
19 health centre often or not so often; I mean, when
20 accompanying persons from Kaonik?
21 A. Well, in point of fact, he was a relatively
22 frequent visitor. He often accompanied prisoners and
23 sometimes came even without them.
24 Q. Did you have any personal contact with him,
25 apart from some informal chats? Were there some
1 contacts regarding medical services and the like?
2 A. Well, yes, there were contacts. At times he
3 would ask -- well, perhaps not from me, but he asked
4 the health centre personnel to carry out the
5 examination -- well, not during those 10 or 15 days,
6 but later on during the former half of '93, he invited
7 us to inspect the Kaonik facility, what it looked like,
8 whether something could be improved, of course, in view
9 of the conditions that prevailed at the time and the
11 Q. Do you remember what Mr. Aleksovski wore at
12 the time, what kind of clothes he had in those contacts
13 with you?
14 A. Rather informally. At times it was uniform,
15 sometimes he was in civilian clothes, sometimes a
17 Q. You mentioned a uniform. Did he have any
18 insignia of an army or rank on that uniform?
19 A. I don't think so. I don't think he had any
20 kind of markings. I don't think so. I don't remember
21 exactly, but I don't think so.
22 Q. You said that it was quite casual, that
23 sometimes he was in uniform, sometimes civilian
24 clothes, sometimes a combination of the two. Was this
25 matter of dressing a common thing at the time or was it
1 an exception; I mean, compared with the population in
3 A. No, that was quite a common phenomenon, even
4 after the outbreak of the conflict. People often wore
5 those trousers or the jacket because there were -- they
6 were very good work, they could work in them.
7 Q. When you say trousers or the jacket, you mean
8 the military ones?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Dr. Stipac, you said that those patients who
11 were escorted by guards and brought from Kaonik mostly
12 complained of some chronic disorders. Do you remember
13 how were they brought by the guards? Did you see them
14 being brought in a vehicle and then enter the building?
15 A. Yes, I did see them. They would be brought
16 in a white van at the time.
17 Q. Were they tied?
18 A. No, they were not.
19 Q. Were they handcuffed?
20 A. No, they were not restrained in any way.
21 Q. Could you describe the treatment they were
22 accorded at the health centre. As of the moment they
23 would go through the door of the health centre and
24 entered the waiting room, what happened then?
25 A. Well, as regards them, regardless of the
1 large number of patients that we had, we would
2 discontinue the examination of other patients and would
3 take them first. Usually a guard or Mr. Aleksovski
4 would come in and agree with us about it, and then they
5 would enter one by one and we would examine them.
6 Q. Did the guard or Mr. Aleksovski, if he
7 happened to escort those patients, stay in the surgery
8 during such examinations or not?
9 A. Not always. If we asked for it, but not
10 always. I can't remember, really.
11 Q. You mentioned that when patients were brought
12 from Kaonik that the guard or Mr. Aleksovski, if he
13 accompanied them, would enter the surgery to see about
14 the examination. And the patients at that time, where
15 were they?
16 A. They would be in front of the surgery.
17 Q. In the waiting room?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Together with other patients waiting for
20 whatever health service?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Were they isolated in any way, put in a
23 special room, or were they in the normal, regular
24 waiting room where all the other patients awaited to
25 see the doctor?
1 A. No, no, no. There is no special room there.
2 It is a passage with some benches and all the patients
3 are there. I mean, we simply did not have any special
4 room and there was no need for it.
5 Q. So in that situation when Kaonik patients
6 waited to be admitted into the surgery for whatever
7 health service, medical service, were they under any
8 supervision, or did they just sit there and wait like
9 any other patient?
10 A. Well, I do not know. If a guard entered,
11 then they would, presumably, stay there alone with
12 other patients. I don't know. I never checked that.
13 I don't understand.
14 Q. I see. Dr. Stipac, you mentioned that
15 patients usually came with some chronic complaints. I
16 am referring to people who came from Kaonik. Do you
17 remember -- can you recall if, apart from those chronic
18 complaints, were there any other complaints or
19 disorders, I mean some bodily injuries, fractures,
20 wounds, things like that?
21 A. Bodily injuries. Well, yes, there were such
22 cases. Mostly haematoma, scratches and things like
23 that. Fractures, I don't recall. I don't remember,
24 really, because whenever they would suspect something,
25 we could take an x-ray. So I would presumably remember
1 if there was something.
2 Q. You mentioned bruises and scratches, things
3 like that. I am well aware six years have elapsed
4 since, but do you remember, what was the ratio, what
5 was the percentage of such injuries of such health
6 problems as against the overall in number? That is,
7 whether the ratio were very high, were there very many
8 such cases or not?
9 A. I would not say so. I do not really think it
10 was a widespread phenomenon. Perhaps of five patients,
11 one would perhaps have injuries of that kind.
12 Q. Dr. Stipac, did you in such situations, that
13 is, of course, if you were the one who was extending
14 them medical help, did you ever ask those patients
15 about such injuries, I don't mean chronic diseases?
16 A. No, I never discussed it with patients. My
17 duty was to extend aid to them, medical aid to them.
18 Q. Dr. Stipac, do you, perhaps, remember if
19 there was a situation that a patient complained to you
20 personally when he was left alone with you in the
21 surgery, when Mr. Aleksovski or the guard were not
22 there? Did any one of them complain of something?
23 A. You mean how they were treated?
24 Q. Well, how they were treated or perhaps the
25 cause of these injuries.
1 A. Well, I don't really remember. Maybe they
2 did, but I simply don't remember, because a lot of time
3 has passed by.
4 Q. Dr. Stipac, you said that in Busovaca there
5 was an improvised morgue which had to be moved twice.
6 Did you ever go there to examine the -- to examine the
7 bodies? I don't mean autopsies, I mean simply to see
8 the bodies.
9 A. Well, this was a very painful sight.
10 Dr. Petrovic, Dr. Ruzica, they were not simply up to
11 it. Their health would not permit them. So it was
12 always Dr. Raos and I who went there.
13 Q. During those examinations, do you, perhaps,
14 remember an occurrence when you examined two bodies of
15 two citizens of Muslim origin who had been brought to
16 that morgue?
17 A. Those were two bodies brought to the morgue
18 of two citizens of Muslim origin. I don't remember
19 that case.
20 Q. Let me rephrase it. Did anyone ask you to
21 look at those two bodies and make a record of the
22 injuries, make a practical of the injuries?
23 A. I remember that two Bosniak Muslims were
24 killed on a job and a lot of dust was raised about
25 this, so that Mr. Aleksovski requested us to make the
1 record of the causes of death. And I do not remember
2 what their injuries were and who did it, but it was a
3 rather singular event. So I remember it. I don't
4 remember that anything like that happened after that.
5 Q. You said that was Mr. Aleksovski who
6 requested you to conduct the examination?
7 A. Yes, that is correct. There had been -- they
8 had been detained and they were under his supervision,
9 and therefore they fell under his jurisdiction.
10 Q. Do you know what happened subsequently, or
11 you have no knowledge of that?
12 A. No, I have no knowledge about that.
13 Q. Do you, perhaps, remember the injuries on
14 those two dead bodies? What did they die of, or is it
15 that you don't remember?
16 A. I don't, to be quite frank. I simply don't
17 remember. I remember the -- that particular event, but
18 the injuries, no, I don't.
19 Q. Dr. Stipac, you mentioned that you had been
20 to see the Kaonik facility in person.
21 A. That is correct.
22 Q. Could you describe the circumstances under
23 which you visited it, and whose initiative was it?
24 A. Well, we went there only when invited by
25 Mr. Aleksovski, whether to examine a patient, to
1 inspect the facility, various reasons. Could be
3 Q. Since you mentioned inspection of the
4 facility, what do you mean by that? Was the purpose of
5 such inspections?
6 A. Well, we had more of an advisory,
7 consultative role, how to improve the sanitary
8 conditions of the facility and such like.
9 Q. Dr. Stipac, when you were on the duty
10 service, on the emergency service at the time, did you
11 ever come across patients suffering from some
12 infectious disease? I mean some infection or perhaps
13 some contagious disease.
14 A. You mean from the facility? Perhaps there
15 were a case here and there, but nothing that would look
16 like an outbreak.
17 Q. When you say "a case here and there,"
18 sporadic cases, what disease do you have in mind?
19 A. I mean mostly those caused by parasites, that
20 is scabies, but they often arrived at the facility with
21 such a particular disease, so it was rather simple to
22 treat, and we then undertook measures to suppress them.
23 Q. And did these -- did the state of their
24 health, was it a major variance with the state of
25 health of the population at large?
1 A. No. I think there were much more cases of
2 scabies among the HVO forces, because of course the
3 conditions in the trenches were abominable, so that on
4 that side we could even be talking about an epidemic.
5 Q. You mean the --
6 A. I mean the HVO combatants.
7 Q. Dr. Stipac, what facilities did you visit in
8 Kaonik, and how many times did you go there?
9 A. How many times? I really don't remember.
10 Q. Well, was it once or --
11 A. Several times, two or three, perhaps, I don't
12 know, five. What was your first question? I'm sorry.
13 Q. What facilities did you visit there?
14 A. I visited the prison, that is where the cells
15 were. As a matter of fact, nothing else, only that.
16 Q. And what was your business there? Why did
17 you go there? Was it simply to extend some medical
18 help or was it something else?
19 A. By and large it was for medical reasons, I
20 remember, and an injured patient who had been
21 hospitalised in Nova Bila, and when his -- when his
22 health stabilised he was transferred to Kaonik, but
23 Penicillin treatment was continued. And since there
24 may be problems with Penicillin, then the nurse there
25 would go there to administrate to him to avoid anything
1 -- I mean, the patient had been wounded and
2 transportation wouldn't have good for him. So that we
3 went instead to see him from the health centre.
4 Q. What was your impression as a physician about
5 the conditions in that facility in Kaonik?
6 A. Well, it wasn't a facility built for the
7 purpose. And my impression was that they had done
8 quite a lot to make it a viable place, a place where
9 one could really -- a little more or less decently.
10 But I really don't know. I don't know what I could
11 compare it with.
12 Q. Did you ever have an opportunity to see the
13 toilets in Kaonik, bathrooms, laboratories?
14 A. Well, yes, I did. I don't really remember
15 them all that well, but it worked, more or less. It
16 was cleaned. I don't really know what I could say
17 about that.
18 Q. What did you think about those patients from
19 Kaonik that you treated as regards the diet, the state
20 of health in general, their physical appearance, the
22 A. Well, they did not starve. They were not
23 undernourished. It was warm, as far as I can remember,
24 because I believe there were one or two big stoves
25 which then heated the whole facility. There were not
1 any serious diseases, serious disorders among them.
2 Q. Did you ever talk to some of those people in
4 A. I don't remember. I don't think so.
5 Q. Dr. Stipac, what were the circumstances in
6 general? We are still in the former half of '93. What
7 was the situation, what were the circumstances in the
8 Municipality of Busovaca? By this, I mean water
9 supply, power supply, food supply, clothes, footwear,
10 medicines and the rest. Could you, perhaps, describe
11 the circumstances.
12 A. Well, they were not the same throughout the
13 former half of '93. At the outset we had some
14 medicine, that is some stocks, left behind, but --
15 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours --
16 JUDGE RODRIGUES: I'm sorry, did you want to
17 say --
18 MR. MEDDEGODA: With this question, Your
19 Honours, it is going outside the ambit of the
20 indictment, because the question relates to the former
21 half of -- the second half of 1993, as far as I
22 understand it. If that is the case, my objection is
23 that the question is outside the terms, outside the
24 time frame of the indictment, which is January to May
25 1993, Your Honours. Yes, he refers to the second half
1 of 1993, Your Honours.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, do you have
3 anything you would like to add on that?
4 MR. MIKULICIC: Your lordships, I think it
5 was simply a mistake. I am not asking anything about
6 the second half of '93. My questions all relate to the
7 former half of '93, and even if it was not the mistake
8 in translation, then perhaps I might have made a slip
9 of the tongue. At any rate, my questions all relate to
10 the former half of 1993.
11 MR. MEDDEGODA: I withdraw my objection, Your
13 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much. You
14 may resume your questioning.
15 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, your lordship.
16 Q. Dr. Stipac, let me remind you. The question
17 was what were the -- what was the situation in the
18 Municipality of Busovaca, in which you also lived in
19 the former half of '93, regarding electricity, water,
20 food supply, clothes, footwear, medicines, et cetera?
21 Could you tell us something about that?
22 A. In point of fact, in the former half of '93
23 there were no supplies. We lived off stocks for the
24 food, electricity. Well, sometimes there were some
25 cuts, some not. Water supply, again depended on the
1 part of the town. Some did not have water, some did.
2 Those parts which were controlled by the Army
3 of the BiH, their water supply was cut off. Other
4 parts of the town did have running water. Well, no
5 luxury, of course. There was rationing since nothing
6 was coming in.
7 Q. How did you get the medicines? Only the
8 stocks or were there some donations or what?
9 A. I don't really know much about that, because
10 it was the director who took care of that.
11 Q. In the light of the situation as regards the
12 supply, was the health centre in the same situation as
13 all the other institutions and the citizenry in the
14 Municipality of Busovaca, or did you have some
15 additional sources of supply?
16 A. You mean the health centre, supply of what?
17 Q. Everything, all the basic necessities and
19 A. No. We lived under the same conditions as
20 everybody else.
21 Q. Dr. Stipac, do you know, when it comes to the
22 preparation of food, where was the food prepared for
23 the prisoners in Kaonik? Where was it prepared and
24 transported to them? Do you know that?
25 A. I'm not sure. I think it was prepared at the
1 Draga and then it was transported, delivered to Kaonik
2 two or three times a day.
3 Q. Do you know whether the same food was taken
4 somewhere else from that barracks?
5 A. I think that the food was taken to the
6 soldiers who were at the frontline and also to the
7 health centre.
8 Q. Does that mean that the medical centres,
9 soldiers at the frontline, at the prison facility, that
10 they all had the same food?
11 A. Yes, that's right.
12 Q. Dr. Stipac, you mentioned that you went to
13 school, secondary school in Vitez; is that correct?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Do you remember, were you ever in a position
16 to provide medical help to some of your professors from
17 the grammar school in Vitez, people who would be
18 brought there as patients?
19 A. Yes. I remember they were Professor Enes
20 Surkovic and Kadir Dzidic. They used to be my
21 professors at the grammar school.
22 Q. Do you remember who brought them to the
23 medical centre and what were the circumstances of this
24 event? Could you describe it for us, please.
25 A. They were detained at the Kaonik facility and
1 I don't know why, but anyway, they were brought to the
2 medical centre under the escort of some guards. I
3 wanted to talk to them, because I wanted to ask them if
4 they needed anything because I was in very good terms
5 with my secondary school professors, secondary school
6 teachers. But the situation was a bit awkward.
7 Q. Do you remember what kind of complaints they
8 had, why was it that they came to the medical centre?
9 A. I don't remember any specific reasons. I
10 believe that they were under stress. They suffered
11 from insomnia. I don't think that they suffered from
12 any specific medical disease. It's difficult to
14 Q. Yes, it was a long time ago, I understand.
15 You've indicated that you would sometimes provide
16 advice when requested to do so by Mr. Aleksovski
17 regarding the situation at the Kaonik facility, what
18 kind of advice was it?
19 A. Well, I would simply advise him as to the
20 measures, medical measures that were to be taken at the
21 facility, such as fumigation, rat extermination. That
22 the facility should be fumigated against rats and the
23 toilet facilities should be disinfested and so on,
24 whatever was our field.
25 Q. Do you know whether the medical centre ever
1 conducted any kind of intervention in that sense? Did
2 they conduct fumigation or rat extermination at the
3 Kaonik facility?
4 A. Yes, they conducted such actions, I don't
5 know on how many occasions. It was the head nurse that
6 was in charge of that, but I don't know who exactly
7 took part in fumigation and rat extermination that were
8 conducted at the Kaonik facility.
9 Q. Dr. Stipac, with the assistance of the usher,
10 I would like to show you some documents, medical
11 documents. And I would kindly ask you to have a look
12 at them. This is Exhibit No. 18 and I would kindly ask
13 the usher to present them in order and to use the
14 ELMO. And Dr. Stipac, I would ask you, because you
15 know the handwriting of your doctors and because of
16 your profession, I would like you to interpret these
17 documents for us, please.
18 A. In order?
19 Q. Yes, I would kindly ask the usher to place
20 them one by one on the ELMO so that we can see the
21 document on the monitor. Dr. Stipac, do you have the
22 document on your monitor?
23 A. Well, it just disappeared.
24 Q. It will come back again.
25 A. Yes, yes, I can see it now. The name is
1 Ilijas Krivosija. Herniated disk, therapy recommended,
2 to be spared from work and to lie on flat surface. Do
3 you need any other interpretation?
4 Q. Yes, please. What is a herniated disk?
5 A. It's a degenerative disorder of the spine and
6 the therapy that is most often recommended is
7 antirheumatic and the patient should always lie on flat
8 surface, although the therapy medication is not
9 indicated here.
10 Q. Dr. Stipac, is this a chronic disease or an
11 acute disease?
12 A. It's a chronic disease with acute
13 exacerbations. We can speak of a chronic disease
14 here. It lasts for a long time. It's a degenerative
15 process. And from time to time the patient has pains,
16 which can be calmed down, but which are likely to
17 reappear if the patient lifts say, for example,
18 something heavy.
19 Q. Do you by any chance know this patient?
20 A. No, I don't know Ilijas Krivosija.
21 Q. Do you know when this document was issued?
22 Is there anything that you could base your conclusion
23 on in the document? Have a look at the signature.
24 A. It was issued by Dr. Bernardica Mioc. I
25 believe that the document was issued at the beginning,
1 during the first days of the conflict, between the 25th
2 of January and the end of that month.
3 Q. Can we see the next document, please?
4 A. The name is Avdo Husbasic, status
5 (inaudible)-- at the section of the stomach. The
6 method used was (inaudible) anaemia, high pressure,
7 high blood pressure.
8 Q. What about the second part, is it hernia
9 again, second part of the document?
10 A. It's quite difficult to read it. A, B. Yes,
11 I think it's hernia, abdominals, in the area of the
12 abdomen. Again, it's a chronic disease. The patient
13 is supposed to rest, be on diet. The medication
14 prescribed was Ramatal, two times one tablet. Amocil.
15 And home treatment was also requested.
16 Q. Do you know this patient personally?
17 A. The name rings a bell, but I couldn't
18 remember who that person was.
19 Q. Judging from the name of the doctor who
20 issued the document, could you tell us which period
21 this document refers to?
22 A. There's no date.
23 Q. Have a look at the original, the seal of the
25 A. Yes, this is the signature of Dr. Petrovic.
1 Q. Thank you, can we have the next document,
3 A. (Name inaudible), lumbar (term in B/S/C).
4 It's also some kind of protrusion of the lumbar disk,
5 lumbar disk, and chronic ulcer of the duodenum.
6 Therapy is indicated here.
7 Q. Do you know this patient?
8 A. I don't know him personally, but I know that
9 he was a high school teacher. I know him by sight.
10 He's an acquaintance. I can't say that I know him very
12 Q. Which high school?
13 A. The high school in Busovaca.
14 Q. Do you know whether this person was brought
15 as a patient from the Kaonik facility or you have no
16 knowledge of that?
17 A. No, I don't remember that.
18 Q. Thank you, can we have the next document,
20 A. Ejub Buljina. There's a code for diagnosis,
21 according to the old categorisation. I think it refers
22 to weakness of heart muscle, four to five. Home
23 treatment is recommended. It's probably a chronic
24 disease with some kind of acute exacerbation with all
25 the symptoms of the disease and it is only logical that
1 the doctor requested home treatment.
2 Q. Do you know this patient personally?
3 A. No, I don't know him.
4 Q. Next document, please.
5 A. This is illegible, Svad Halilovic. It's a
6 contused -- it's an injury of the chest, but without
7 fracture, so I believe that an x-ray must have been
8 done. Therapy recommended, home treatment again. I
9 know this patient. People called him "Suvi" in
10 Busovaca. Suvi because he was tall and skinny and he
11 still is that way. I know him and I know that he was
12 detained at the time and that he was brought to the
13 health centre by guards. I remember him because I know
15 Q. Thank you. Can we have the next document,
17 A. Hasan Pezic. We have a code again. I think
18 that the patient had problems with circulation with
19 veins, varicose veins, compresses were indicated as
21 Q. What kind of disease is that?
22 A. It's a disease of the veins, varicose veins.
23 Q. Is it a chronic disease?
24 A. Yes, it's a chronic disease. It develops
25 over a number of years, decades.
1 Q. Do you know this patient personally?
2 A. Yes, yes, I know him. This is a very common
3 surname in Busovaca and I know him personally.
4 Nasic Silajdic, swelling in the area of the
5 left ear, earache. It was an infection of the middle
6 ear, therapy is indicated here. The patient had to
7 avoid contact with water. I can't read this. Draught,
8 yes, draught.
9 Q. Do you know him?
10 A. No, I don't know this patient. I know some
11 of them by name, but I don't know them personally.
13 Q. Have a look at the document on the ELMO,
14 maybe that would be easier.
15 A. Yes, Senad Dervic, 5, 3, 2, duodenal ulcer.
16 Again, we have a case of duodenal ulcer. The therapy
17 is indicated. The patient had to rest. Again, it's a
18 chronic disease.
19 Q. Do you know this patient?
20 A. Well, the name tells me something, but I know
21 him by name, but not personally. He's an elderly man.
22 Q. The document was issued by Dr. Bernardica
23 Mioc on the 26th of January, 1993, this is the period
24 when she was on duty, when she was working?
25 A. Yes, that's correct.
1 Q. Thank you. Can we see the next document,
3 A. I can't see the name. Yes, Lusija, Ethem
4 Lusija. This is an examination of the ear. Here we
5 have a case of high pressure. I know this particular
6 patient. I know him as a patient and I know him from
7 before. He's a very well-known person in our town.
8 Q. What kind of disorders are these?
9 A. Well, it's just high blood pressure.
10 Extrasystole disorder of the heart. An ECG was
11 probably done because, otherwise, the doctor couldn't
12 have reached this diagnosis. The therapy here is
13 administered. I think that after the patient took
14 medication, the doctor must have taken his blood
15 pressure again because here we have it, it's indicated
16 two times.
17 Q. Do you know if this particular person was
18 brought from Kaonik as a patient?
19 A. I think so. I am not quite certain, but I
20 think that he was one of the detainees. But I don't
21 remember exactly.
22 Q. Can we see the next document, please.
23 A. Hasan Pezic. I can't read this. There are
24 some portions that were crossed out. Amoxil was
25 administered. Again, the same disease, the same
1 disorder as before. But I think we have an acute
2 inflammation of varicose veins here, that's why the
3 antibiotics were administered.
4 Q. Dr. Stipac, this document that is in front of
5 us, is different from other documents because it is a
6 form. What kind of form is it, can you explain this to
7 the Court?
8 A. This is a form that was used for
9 prescriptions until the conflict. This is the kind of
10 form that we would use to prescribe medication before
11 the conflict broke out.
12 Q. Why do you say that, why do you say that they
13 were used until the conflict?
14 A. Well, they were used -- we used them as long
15 as we had them. And then after the conflict broke out,
16 we had to use something else.
17 Q. Dr. Stipac, we can see on this form that not
18 everything has been filled out. How do you explain
19 that? I am referring to the number of the insurance
20 policy and so on.
21 A. Well, it was issued on the 27th of January.
22 And during that time, we did not have proper
23 administration. People would simply get a prescription
24 and get their medication directly at the health
25 centre. So this particular information was not
1 important during the war. It was important before the
2 war because it all went through the medical insurance
3 company and so on. But this particular data were no
4 longer important.
5 Q. So whenever patients needed some medication
6 they would get it at the pharmacy which was part of the
7 health centre, which was located at the health centre?
8 A. Yes, that's correct.
9 Q. Can we see the last document from this
11 A. Salih Hodzic, the code is 425, Isoptin was
12 prescribed. A heart condition again because of the
13 medication, Isoptin, Salih Hodzic. This person used to
14 work at the institution for medical insurance. I don't
15 know him personally. I know him only by sight. Yes,
16 home treatment, absolutely home treatment. Yes, it's a
17 heart condition.
18 Q. Do you know whether this person was brought
19 from Kaonik or not?
20 A. I don't know exactly, I don't remember.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 A. If I may add, he probably was brought from
23 Kaonik, because otherwise home treatment would not be
24 specifically indicated. He was probably detained and
25 doctor requested for home treatment for this particular
2 Q. Thank you very much. We have finished with
3 these documents. Dr. Stipac, you've now had an
4 opportunity to see a number of documents from the
5 medical centre and very often home treatment was
6 indicated as therapy, home treatment, rest, the
7 patients had to be spared from work and so on. How do
8 you interpret that?
9 A. They had to be spared from work and from any
10 kind of physical activity. And if the home treatment
11 was requested, it was because any home treatment would
12 have been better than the home treatment than they
13 received at the prison facility. It's a common thing
14 to request, any physician should request that.
15 Q. Do you know, Dr. Stipac, whether this was
16 acted upon accordingly or you have no knowledge of
18 A. I don't have any specific knowledge of that,
19 but I think that most of the time it was acted upon
20 accordingly. We administered certain therapy and we
21 would check that on a number of occasions, and indeed,
22 that was respected.
23 Q. Dr. Stipac, at the beginning of your
24 testimony you indicated that you've spent your whole
25 life in Busovaca, that is 35 years?
1 A. A little more, 36.
2 Q. Okay, 36. I will now show you a photograph
3 and I would kindly ask you to tell me what it is. Can
4 I have the assistance of the usher, please.
5 THE REGISTRAR: This is Document D-19.
6 THE WITNESS: It's a map.
7 MR. MIKULICIC:
8 Q. Dr. Stipac, what kind of photograph is that
9 and where is this area?
10 A. I am not quite sure. I don't know.
11 Q. Thank you. We can remove this photograph.
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Excuse me, Mr. Mikulicic,
13 perhaps there's some problem with the way in which this
14 photograph was placed? No?
15 MR. MIKULICIC: (No translation.) We wanted
16 to see whether the witness can indicate what this area
17 was, but if we cannot, we wouldn't pursue that any
19 JUDGE RODRIGUES: If you, yourself, are not
20 going to insist upon that, very well. But, perhaps, if
21 we were to turn the photograph, then he'd agree,
22 perhaps. Then, perhaps, the witness will be able to
23 make some comments. Would you like to try that?
24 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you for your
25 suggestion, Your Honour. Maybe this is a good idea,
1 maybe we can turn the photograph upside down and maybe
2 the witness can have a look at it once again.
3 THE WITNESS: It's a factory as far as I can
4 see. I am not very good at reading maps and this is
5 probably an aerial photograph.
6 MR. MIKULICIC: No luck. Thank you. Thank
7 you, anyway. It can be removed from the ELMO and I
8 would like to tender this into evidence as D-19,
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Sorry, Mr. Mikulicic, do
11 you have many more questions left or should we take a
12 recess now?
13 MR. MIKULICIC: Only one.
14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you. Please
16 MR. MIKULICIC:
17 Q. In my last question for you, Dr. Stipac, it
18 concerns medical control. You have indicated you told
19 us that you followed the situation with your
20 recommendations as to regarding patients at the Kaonik
21 facility and that you checked on several occasions
22 whether the medications were given. Do you remember
23 whether patients were ever brought to the medical
24 centre for check ups?
25 A. Yes, they were regularly brought for check
1 ups whenever it was indicated, whenever it was
2 requested. They respected all our recommendations and
3 instructions and I think that in that regard our can
4 operation was very good.
5 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Dr. Stipac, this
6 concludes my examination.
7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well, we shall take a
8 twenty minute recess.
9 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 10.54 a.m.
11 (The witness entered court)
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Niemann, you have the
13 floor to continue, I believe. Mr. Meddegoda.
14 MR. MEDDEGODA: Yes, Your Honours. Thank
16 Cross-examined by Mr. Meddegoda
17 Q. May I proceed?
18 Witness, before the recess and in the course
19 of your testimony you said that you had the opportunity
20 to provide medical help to two of your professors in
21 the grammar school in Vitez.
22 A. Correct.
23 Q. And one of them was professor Enes Surkovic?
24 A. That's right.
25 Q. And who was the other professor?
1 A. Kadir Dzidic.
2 Q. Now, where was this medical help provided by
3 you to professor Dzidic and professor Surkovic?
4 A. Health centre in Busovaca.
5 Q. And when -- do you remember when they were
6 brought to the health centre in Busovaca?
7 A. I don't remember the exact date.
8 Q. Do you remember whether they were brought
9 together or were they brought on two separate
11 A. Together. They were brought together.
12 Q. And you also said that they were brought
13 under the escort of guards?
14 A. Correct.
15 Q. As far as you are aware, doctor, do you know
16 whether professor Surkovic and professor Dzidic have
17 been involved in any military activity?
18 A. I wouldn't know that. From Vitez, I don't
19 know what was happening to them during that time.
20 Q. As far as you are aware, were professor
21 Surkovic and professor Dzidic involved in any criminal
23 A. I do not know. As a matter of fact, I have
24 not seen them for quite a long time before that.
25 Q. And as professors who had taught you, you
1 would have had the highest respect for them?
2 A. Yes, of course.
3 Q. Witness, you said that you visited the Kaonik
4 camp several times.
5 A. Yes, I visited the prison on a couple of
7 Q. On those occasions -- sorry, I withdraw that
8 question, Your Honour.
9 On those occasions, when you visited the
10 camp, you said that you visited the building with the
12 A. That is true. That is the only building in
13 the prison that I visited.
14 Q. You did not visit a hangar building that was
15 in the camp component?
16 A. No, nowhere else.
17 Q. Witness, you said you commenced work in the
18 Busovaca Health Centre in January 1993. Is that right?
19 A. It is.
20 Q. And at that time you began an internship in
21 the Busovaca Health Centre?
22 A. The internship.
23 Q. And what was the duration of your internship?
24 A. One year.
25 Q. So this means that throughout the year of
1 1993 you worked in the Busovaca Health Centre as an
2 intern, in the course of an internship?
3 A. That is correct.
4 Q. And as far as I recollect, you also said that
5 you worked in the night-shift, or you had night duty in
6 the Busovaca Health Centre.
7 A. That is true also.
8 Q. Throughout this period was it the night-shift
9 that you worked on?
10 A. Well, not always. It depended on the health
11 of other doctors, on the timetable, on the schedule, or
12 when who could work or not. You know, the times were
13 not normal. I worked when it was necessary to and like
14 everybody else.
15 Q. So did you, apart from the night-shift, the
16 night duty, did you also work during the day in the
17 Busovaca Health Centre?
18 A. Yes, often -- I would often be there for 24
19 hours, sometimes even longer, if there had been any
20 conflict, if there was any fighting, so there were
21 wounded or so on and so forth. We had no working
22 hours. We were there whenever it was necessary.
23 And I live very near to the health centre,
24 perhaps some 50 metres away from it, so they were to
25 call me whenever it was needed.
1 Q. Do you know where Dr. Bernardica Mioc is
3 A. No, I don't.
4 Q. She is not working in the health centre?
5 A. No. She was there -- she was there
6 part-time. She came for a weekend for part-time and
7 then stayed a week.
8 Q. When did she come for part-time and stay for
9 a week, during which period was that?
10 A. It was Saturday and Sunday when the conflict
11 commenced, or perhaps on Sunday she worked for 24
12 hours. And then she simply could not go back because
13 of the conflict in Zenica, because she normally lived
14 and worked in Zenica, as far as I know.
15 Q. Does this mean that she did not work -- does
16 this mean that she did not work during the week, but
17 only worked during the weekends?
18 A. Well, she would come there to work part-time
19 because -- I don't really -- I think it was only for
20 weekends, but I can't really remember her timetable. I
21 mean, of course it was subject to her agreement with
22 the director.
23 Q. And who was the director of the medical
25 A. Vesna Bilic, master of sciences.
1 Q. Do you know where Dr. Markovic is at present,
3 A. I think she's here in the Netherlands. I'm
4 not sure, but I think she is here.
5 Q. And have you -- do you know where
6 Dr. Petrovic presently is?
7 A. Yes, of course. She's in Busovaca. She's
8 with the health centre. She's a gynaecologist.
9 Q. Apart from these doctors, were there others
10 who worked in the Busovaca Health Centre during the
11 period of the conflict from January to May, 1993?
12 A. Well, there was Dr. Kordic there, but only
13 for one hour or two in the morning, as she suffered a
14 stroke, a repeated stroke. That is a stroke which she
15 suffered once again during the war, so that she had to
16 stop working altogether.
17 Q. Do you remember if there was a Dr. Muhamed
18 Mujezinovic who was working in the Busovaca Health
20 A. I think he was with the health centre in
21 Vitez, not in Busovaca. I heard about him, but I do
22 not know him.
23 Q. Perhaps you are not aware that he worked --
24 you don't know whether he worked during the period of
25 April to May, 1993, in the Busovaca Health Centre?
1 A. I do know he did not work.
2 Q. Doctor, is there any other medical facilities
3 in Busovaca other than the Busovaca Health Centre?
4 A. Yes. There was an office within the Nova
5 Bila Hospital, but there were only cots there without
6 any doctors. And doctors, surgeons, as a rule, would
7 go from Nova Bila there to see them, treat them. Those
8 were mostly wounded because there was simply not enough
9 room for them all at Nova Bila.
10 Q. And you said this was in the Nova Bila
11 Hospital; is that right?
12 A. No. It was in Busovaca, in the kindergarten
13 in Busovaca, but it was attached to Nova Bila Hospital,
14 so that the physicians from Nova Bila Hospital visited
15 it three times a week to control, to check the patients
16 who were hospitalised there. There were several nurses
17 there all the time, but no doctors were attached to
18 that facility.
19 Q. And this facility was specifically was for
20 the treatment of HVO soldiers who were wounded?
21 A. No. It was for all the wounded. There were
22 civilians too. There was simply not enough room to
23 separate them. That was throughout Central Bosnia.
24 Q. Witness. You, in the course of your
25 testimony, you referred to two people who were killed
1 and whose bodies were brought to the Busovaca Health
3 A. That is correct. I remember the event, but I
4 don't remember it in any great detail. That is, I
5 don't remember what the injuries were or anything like
6 that. I simply remember the occurrence because it was
7 a singular event.
8 Q. Do you know whether or not an autopsy was
9 conducted on either of the bodies?
10 A. No. The autopsy could not be conducted
11 because conditions for anything like that were
12 lacking. So they could only examine it superficially,
13 that is, describe the superficial injuries and indicate
14 the cause of death. But it was only the superficial
15 examination of the body.
16 Q. Do you remember who conducted that
17 superficial examination of the bodies?
18 A. Not exactly. Whether it was me or somebody
19 else, I really don't remember.
20 Q. If it was you, you would remember having
21 conducted a superficial examination of these two
22 bodies, would you?
23 A. Let me tell you, I did so many superficial
24 examinations of injuries, so that whether this was part
25 of that or not, I really don't remember. It must have
1 been one hundred or maybe two hundred such
2 descriptions, so that I really do not know what I did
3 or what I didn't. I really don't. I know that we were
4 asked to do it, but who that was, I really don't know.
5 Perhaps it was me.
6 Q. And do you know whether there was a record of
7 such examination?
8 A. Yes, of course. It had to be. But every
9 description of whatever body needed to be typed, put on
10 records, of course, of the health centre.
11 Q. And that --
12 A. And filed there.
13 Q. And that record would, perhaps, be available
14 in the Busovaca Health Centre registers or records?
15 A. Yes, I guess so. One copy stayed with the
16 health centre and a copy of it was turned over to the
17 police for every body that was on record there.
18 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, may the witness
19 be -- I would like to refer the witness to some of the
20 records, Your Honour, that have been produced, marked
21 D18. Could the usher please show to the witness
22 Exhibit D18/F.
23 Q. Witness, in respect of this patient, the
24 therapy has been recommended and also medication has
25 been recommended. Andol is the medicine that has been
1 recommended to this patient?
2 A. That is correct.
3 Q. And for what illness would Andol be
5 A. Andol has many uses. In this case we are
6 dealing with thrombosis of the lower leg vena. It is a
7 good anticoagulant agent. It prevents the blood
8 coagulation so that will prevent the thrombosis
9 developing in those veins. This is standard therapy
10 for such cases.
11 Q. And the diagnosis in this case has been
12 classified as 454?
13 A. This is the old nomenclature. It was not in
14 use in '93. But I should say that it was the
15 varicose veins of the lower leg. So varicose veins of
16 the crural vein, I guess, in the crural region.
17 Q. Now, in respect of such patients, would you
18 recommend antibiotics on occasions?
19 A. It only depended whether the veins were
20 inflamed or not. I mean, if there was an inflammation,
21 yes. If not, then antibiotics would serve no purpose
22 MR. MEDDOGODA: Thank you. I do not think I
23 require the document --
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
25 MR. MEDDEGODA: I would not require the
1 document any further, document D18/F, and, therefore,
2 that can be taken off the ELMO.
3 Q. Witness, you said that patients would be
4 brought to the Kaonik health facility medical centre
5 either by Mr. Aleksovski or, at times, escorted by
6 guards from the Kaonik camp?
7 A. That is true.
8 Q. And you also said that they would be brought
9 in and examined, depending on the urgency of the
11 A. What do you mean, urgency of the situation?
12 Q. If a patient is brought, is he immediately
13 brought into the examination room or to the surgery?
14 A. Well, we usually examine them straight away.
15 I mean, those who would be brought in. It was simply
16 more practical for us and for the guards.
17 Q. Who would bring them into the surgery or the
18 examination room?
19 A. Well, they came -- either escorted by guards
20 or by themselves.
21 Q. And before they were brought into the room,
22 was it practice for you to talk to the escort or to the
23 guard or to Mr. Aleksovski who would bring them to the
24 Busovaca Health Centre?
25 A. No. He would merely announce -- he would
1 simply announce that they had so many patients for
2 examination and whether we could see them straight
3 away. And that is what we did. There were no other
5 Q. And in the examination theatre or in the
6 examination hall, room, you said you wouldn't talk to
7 the patient about the cause of illness or the cause of
8 the injury or the cause of his complaint?
9 A. Well, no. No. Not as a rule, because it
10 could only embarrass the patient.
11 MR. MEDDEGODA: Your Honours, I have no more
12 questions in cross-examination from this witness.
13 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you, Mr. Meddegoda.
14 Mr. Mikulicic, do you have any more questions?
15 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, your lordship.
16 No, we have no additional questions.
17 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Dr. Stipac, this is the end
18 of your testimony before this International Tribunal.
19 Thank you for coming and testifying, and we wish you a
20 pleasant return to your country. Thank you.
21 THE WITNESS: Thank you very much.
22 (The witness withdrew)
23 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, do you have
24 another witness?
25 MR. MIKULICIC: Yes, I do, Your Honour. The
1 Defence would like to call Ms. Blazenka Stapic.
2 (The witness entered court)
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good morning, madam. Do
4 you hear me?
5 THE WITNESS: Yes, I do.
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: You will now read the
7 solemn declaration, which the Court usher has before
9 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
10 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Thank you very much.
13 Please be seated.
14 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: You are now going to
16 respond to the questions put to you by Mr. Mikulicic,
17 who is there.
18 WITNESS: BLAZENKA STAPIC
19 Examined by Mr. Mikulicic
20 Q. Good morning, Mrs. Stapic. I am Counsel for
21 the accused, Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski, in this case, and I
22 would like to ask you several questions and kindly ask
23 you to answer them to the best of your recollections.
24 Are you seated comfortably?
25 A. Yes, I am. Thank you.
1 Q. If it is easier for you, you can lean on the
2 chair, because I think that the microphone is strong
4 A. Thank you. I'm fine.
5 Q. Mrs. Stapic, you are related, but I have to
6 ask you your date of birth.
7 A. I was born on the 8th of September '55 in
9 Q. Did you always live in Busovaca?
10 A. Yes, I've always lived in Busovaca. In the
11 Village of Skradno, to be more precise.
12 Q. So you live in the Village of Skradno. This
13 is outside the town of Busovaca itself?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. How far is it, approximately, from Busovaca?
16 A. Two kilometres.
17 Q. Thank you. Mrs. Stapic, what is your
18 educational background?
19 A. I completed my elementary education in
20 Busovaca and the secondary medical school in Zenica. I
21 specialised in midwifery.
22 Q. What is your ethnic background?
23 A. I am a Croat.
24 Q. Are you a religious person? Who is your
1 A. I am a Roman Catholic.
2 Q. Do you remember when it was, when you
3 completed your medical education in Zenica?
4 A. It was in 1984.
5 Q. What did you do after high school? Did you
6 find a job there?
7 A. Yes. I found a job in 1986, a year and a
8 half after I completed my education.
9 Q. Where was it?
10 A. I found a job at the medical centre in
12 Q. What kind of job did you get?
13 A. I got a job as midwife at the gynaecological
15 Q. So you've been working at the Busovaca Health
16 Centre ever since, from '86?
17 A. Yes, that's correct.
18 Q. Mrs. Stapic, in 1993, the first half of 1993,
19 that is before that period, how many patients would you
20 receive for treatment every day, do you remember that,
21 the statistics?
22 A. No, I don't remember the exact statistics,
23 but we did have quite a few patients, but I don't know
24 exactly how many.
25 Q. The Busovaca Health Centre is a medical
1 institution which was responsible for which area?
2 A. The area of Busovaca.
3 Q. Do you mean the Town of Busovaca or the
4 Municipality of Busovaca?
5 A. The Municipality of Busovaca, including the
6 town itself. There was only one such medical centre.
7 Q. Mrs. Stapic, do you remember how many
8 physicians and how many nurses and assistants were
9 employed at the Busovaca Health Centre at the beginning
10 of 1993, that is before the outbreak of the conflict in
11 Busovaca and the surroundings?
12 A. Before the conflict I don't remember exactly
13 how many, maybe there were 15 or 16 nurses and
14 assistants, but I am not quite sure.
15 Q. What about the physicians?
16 A. I don't know, I couldn't tell you that.
17 Q. Mrs. Stapic, do you remember what happened in
18 April, 1992, with the building of the medical centre,
19 did it suffer any damage at that time?
20 A. Yes, it was shelled with a missile and it was
21 damaged. It was not completely destroyed, but the
22 damage was quite extensive.
23 Q. You said it was hit with a missile, what
24 exactly do you mean by that? Was it air bombing?
25 A. Yes, yes, it was an air attack.
1 Q. So the aircraft dropped bombs on the medical
2 centre in Busovaca?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Do you know who they belonged to?
5 A. To the JNA.
6 Q. What kind of damage was it?
7 A. Well, one part, one wing of the building was
8 completely destroyed. We didn't have water because the
9 pipes were destroyed. We didn't have electricity for a
10 period of time.
11 Q. What happened later on, have there been any
12 repairs, what was the situation in 1993 as a result of
13 that? Could you tell us something about that?
14 A. Well, the medical centre was repaired, but I
15 don't remember when exactly it was. I don't know
16 whether it was before this conflict or -- no, no, I
17 couldn't remember.
18 Q. Mrs. Stapic, do you remember what was the
19 ethnic structure, ethnic composition of the medical
20 staff at the medical centre in Busovaca prior to the
21 outbreak of conflict in Busovaca?
22 A. Well, all nationalities, ethnicities were
24 Q. Could you be more specific?
25 A. There were Muslims, Croats and Serbs.
1 Q. Do you have any knowledge as to specific
2 figures, could you give us any percentage, how many
3 Croats, how many Muslims and so on?
4 A. I think that there were maybe 50 per cent, I
5 am not sure. They were evenly distributed, but I don't
7 Q. You've indicated that you lived in the
8 village of Skradno and that the village is situated 8
9 kilometres from Busovaca?
10 A. That's correct.
11 Q. How did you go to work?
12 A. On foot.
13 Q. Prior to the outbreak of the conflict, do you
14 remember what the situation was?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Could you describe for us, please, and tell
17 us if you had any duties, were you on duty before the
18 outbreak of the conflict and what kind of impression
19 did these events leave on you?
20 A. We could feel tension several days before the
21 conflict. I was working at the gynaecological
22 department at that time and we had one duty, night duty
23 per month and I was working before the conflict on
24 night duty.
25 Q. Do you remember the exact date?
1 A. I believe it was on the 23rd of January. It
2 was a Saturday.
3 Q. 1993?
4 A. Yes, 1993.
5 Q. So you were on duty that day?
6 A. Yes, that's correct.
7 Q. How did it go, do you remember?
8 A. Well, things were rather quiet at the time.
9 I was on duty together with Dr. Mioc and there was also
10 a cleaning lady who was on duty at the health centre at
11 the time and there were no problems.
12 Q. You're referring to Saturday 23rd of January?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Do you remember the name of the cleaning
16 A. It was Mrs. Senida.
17 Q. Mrs. Senida?
18 A. Yes, I don't remember her surname.
19 Q. What was her ethnic background?
20 A. She was a Muslim.
21 Q. That day or before that day, did you notice
22 anything strange happening in the municipality and the
23 Town of Busovaca itself? I am referring to the
24 behaviour of the Muslim population in the area.
25 A. During these several days, the situation was
1 tense. On that day when I was on duty, usually we
2 would first drink coffee in the surgery, together with
3 the physician and the cleaning lady and I remember that
4 this colleague of mine, this cleaning lady, she told me
5 that Muslims were leaving Busovaca.
6 Saturday is a market day in Busovaca and its
7 quite busy, so we went outside and indeed we saw
8 columns of people going in the easterly direction.
9 They were simply moving out, but we didn't know what
10 was happening and we stayed. She told me, "my sister
11 is expected to have a baby. Her mother in law, they're
12 all leaving to Kacuni," it's a village nearby. And
13 indeed seven or eight days later, her sister gave birth
14 at the medical centre, but she was alone at home, her
15 family had left several days before.
16 Q. You said that it was your colleague, the
17 cleaning lady, who told you about that moving out of
18 the Muslim population?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Do you remember any specific comments? Did
21 she give any explanation as to why that was happening?
22 A. No, she did not. She herself said, I don't
23 know what's happening, it seems that everybody has gone
24 crazy. People are moving out. And we didn't know
1 Q. You've mentioned the village of Kacuni. You
2 told us that it was a Muslim village in the vicinity of
3 Busovaca, do you know what happened in the village of
4 Kacuni a day later?
5 A. Well, I was not working that day, but I know
6 that two Croat men were killed.
7 Q. Do you know their names by any chance?
8 A. One of them was Ivo Petrovic. And the other,
9 he was not from our municipality and I don't remember
10 his name.
11 Q. Do you remember what was the occupation of
12 Ivo Petrovic?
13 A. No, I don't.
14 Q. Do you know anything about the circumstances
15 under which these killings took place?
16 A. All I know is what I heard from my colleague
17 who was working that day. She told me that they had
18 been killed in the village of Kacuni.
19 Q. So you don't have any personal knowledge
20 about that event?
21 A. No, I don't.
22 Q. You said that it was Senida, the cleaning
23 lady, who is a Muslim that drew your attention to the
24 situation to what was happening. She said that she
25 didn't know what was going on, but that the Muslims
1 were leaving Busovaca. What was the situation amongst
2 the employees at the medical centre in Busovaca? You
3 told us that there were lots of Muslims who were
4 employed there, what happened with them?
5 A. Our colleagues would not come to work these
6 days, and some had taken some time off and some simply
7 wouldn't show up.
8 Q. So that the record is clear, Mrs. Stapic,
9 when you say "these days," which period exactly do you
10 have in mind?
11 A. I am referring to the period two or three
12 days prior to the outbreak of the conflict.
13 Q. Two or three days before the conflict, these
14 people, the Muslim employees at the health centre would
15 not come to work?
16 A. No, except for one or two colleagues who had
17 taken leave, maybe a week before that or ten days
18 before that.
19 Q. I understand, thank you. Mrs. Stapic, you
20 have direct contact with patients, do you have any
21 knowledge as to the situation with medical supplies at
22 the health centre?
23 A. We had some reserves, but it was our head
24 nurse who was in charge of that. I think that we are
25 received most of the supplies through UNPROFOR.
1 Q. What reserves do you have in mind?
2 A. I am referring to the medical supplies that
3 we had at the time that we received after the
5 Q. So you're referring to the second half of
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Mrs. Stapic, was the pharmacy that was
9 located at the medical centre operational at the time?
10 A. No, it was not.
11 Q. And where would the patients get their
13 A. At the health centre.
14 Q. Maybe I was not quite clear, was there any
15 pharmacy that was located within the medical centre in
17 A. Yes, there was.
18 Q. Okay. So the procedure was followed and
19 correct me if I am wrong, a patient would receive a
20 prescription and then he would be given medicine at the
21 local internal pharmacy of the health centre?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Was that the only pharmacy that was
24 operational at the time?
25 A. Yes, it was.
1 Q. Mrs. Stapic, after the outbreak of the
2 conflict and after the events in the village of Kacuni,
3 how would you go to there from the Village Skradno?
4 A. On foot.
5 Q. Was it safe for you to go to work in these
6 conditions, did you have to be particularly cautious,
7 could you describe the situation?
8 A. Well, it was not safe, but we had this type
9 of obligation, we were supposed to, we had to come to
10 work. There's an old road that we from the village of
11 Skradno would take and other colleagues would take the
12 main road. There was shooting at the time, but we
13 would come to work every day, regularly.
14 Q. Mrs. Stapic, in the village of Skradno, do
15 you know what was the ethnic composition of the
16 population, was it predominantly Croat village or a
17 Muslim village or a mixed village?
18 A. It was a mixed village.
19 Q. Do you remember any fighting around the
20 village of Skradno at that time?
21 A. Yes, there was some fighting. There was
22 shooting, but I don't know where it came from.
23 Q. Mrs. Stapic, when was the first time that you
24 heard about the Kaonik facility? Are you aware of such
1 A. Well, I live in the vicinity and I know that
2 it used to be military barracks, but I had never been
3 to that facility.
4 Q. When you say that it was a form of barracks,
5 what exactly did you have in mind?
6 A. Well, the JNA army was accommodated there
8 Q. Mrs. Stapic, do you remember when it was that
9 the JNA left the barracks?
10 A. In 1992.
11 Q. And what happened after that, do you have any
12 knowledge of that?
13 A. You mean after the shelling? I mean we were
14 shelled at that time.
15 Q. But you personally have never been to Kaonik?
16 A. No.
17 Q. Before and after the conflict?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Mrs. Stapic, when did you first come across
20 patients who were brought to the Busovaca health centre
21 from Kaonik?
22 A. It was in late January and early February,
24 Q. Do you know the person by the name of Zlatko
1 A. Yes, I do.
2 Q. When did you first meet him?
3 A. Well, it was at that time when he started
4 bringing in these people, so it was in late January,
5 early February, at the very beginning of the conflict.
6 Q. Mrs. Stapic, could you recognise, would you
7 recognise Mr. Aleksovski if you saw him today?
8 A. Yes, I would.
9 Q. Can you see him here in this courtroom?
10 A. Yes, I can.
11 Q. Could you tell us where he's sitting?
12 A. Well, he's sitting right behind you.
13 Q. For the record, please, if it can be
14 reflected that the witness has stated that the accused
15 is sitting behind the Defence. Mrs. Stapic, what kind
16 of contact did you have with Mr. Aleksovski, if any?
17 A. He would bring in patients for examination
18 and that's how we met.
19 Q. Do you remember how he was dressed at that
20 time when he would come to the health centre? Did he
21 have an uniform? Was he wearing civilian clothes?
22 A. Both, both uniform and civilian clothes.
23 Sometimes he would come dressed in civilian clothes and
24 sometimes he would be in uniform. Sometimes he would
25 come dressed in parts of a uniform. But in any case,
1 it was both, both civilian clothes and uniform.
2 Q. Do you remember him wearing any insignia on
3 his uniform, military insignia or rank insignia?
4 A. We didn't pay any attention to it, but I
5 don't think he had any such insignia.
6 Q. Mrs. Stapic, did you notice when Mr.
7 Aleksovski or some other guards would bring in patients
8 from Kaonik, did you observe that, how would they bring
9 in patients, by car, on foot?
10 A. They would bring them by car, in a vehicle.
11 Mr. Zlatko Aleksovski would either come alone or with
12 someone else who worked at the prison facility.
13 Q. Do you remember if these people were
14 constrained or tied up, did they have any handcuffs?
15 A. No.
16 Q. You mean you don't remember?
17 A. No, I know that they didn't have any.
18 Q. Could you please describe for us the
19 procedure that was applied when Kaonik patients were
20 brought into the Busovaca medical centre? What was the
21 follow up procedure? Did you have any?
22 A. Well, this was the only medical centre in the
23 area. And all patients were brought to our centre, but
24 we would always make sure that these people were
25 admitted first. We would take them into our -- to the
1 nurse's office so that there wouldn't be any problems
2 in the waiting area later on.
3 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, I think
4 perhaps Mr. Aleksovski has some problem, you might
5 check with him to see if he's in good health.
6 MR. MIKULICIC: Defence is thankful for your
7 concern. My client has just informed me that he's
8 feeling very well. It's just that he's getting a
9 little emotional because of the events that are being
10 described here.
11 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Very well.
12 MR. MIKULICIC:
13 Q. Mrs. Stapic, you said -- problems in the
14 waiting room, what did you mean by this, what kind of
16 A. I just said it was the only health centre,
17 both the military and the civilians were coming there.
18 The conflict was already on the way and we wanted to do
19 our job. I was afraid that somebody might hurt
20 somebody while on the premises of the health centre.
21 Q. Does that mean, Mrs. Stapic, that there were
22 instances when patients, that is, HVO soldiers who were
23 seeking medical help because of wounds or some other
24 injuries and the patients from Kaonik would find
25 themselves together there around the same time?
1 A. Yes, because there was one waiting room and
2 they were all in that same waiting room, but perhaps
3 under some special circumstances, we would move Mr.
4 Aleksovski and his patient to our room, to our
5 examination room where we were, so that that person
6 could be examined immediately and returned.
7 Q. I see. Do you remember if there were any
8 incidents between HVO members and other patients in the
9 waiting room of the health centre?
10 A. No, no, not on our premises.
11 Q. Mrs. Stapic, do you remember, what did the
12 Kaonik patients complain of?
13 A. They mostly suffered from various disorders
14 which they had even before. That is either blood
15 pressure, or perhaps, sugar content or headaches and
16 things like that.
17 Q. Did it ever happen that one of those people
18 complained to you about how they had been treated?
19 A. No, I don't remember, no.
20 Q. Mrs. Stapic, have you ever seen any of these
21 patients that we are talking about, that is those
22 persons brought from Kaonik, did you ever see any one
23 of them injured? I mean, fractures, perhaps or some
24 obvious bruises or other injuries somewhere on the body
25 or anything like that?
1 A. I do not remember any fractures, but I
2 remember a man whom Mr. Zlatko brought in, he had
3 bruises on his back.
4 Q. Do you remember the surname of that man?
5 A. No.
6 Q. Could it be a person whose surname was Sivro,
7 does that ring a bell?
8 A. I was trying to remember for a long time. It
9 could be that person, I think that gentleman's name was
10 Sivro, but I am not sure.
11 Q. Did you talk to him, did you ask him about
12 those injuries?
13 A. No, I did not.
14 Q. Did somebody explain, Mr. Aleksovski or
15 somebody else, ask him where he received his injuries?
16 A. No.
17 Q. I know that six years have elapsed since and
18 that I one has difficulty remembering even some
19 pleasant occurrences, let alone such unpleasant ones,.
20 But, nevertheless, I must ask you, do you perhaps
21 remember the name of some other person, your personal
22 acquaintance who had been brought as a patient from
23 Kaonik to the health centre?
24 A. Well, Busovaca is a small town and most of us
25 knew each other.
1 Q. Any one in particular?
2 A. Well, perhaps only a professor, I remember he
3 came during my shift and I know he had some problems.
4 He had ulcer, but even before the war, and that was Mr.
5 Ismet Medjuseljac.
6 Q. Where was he a professor?
7 A. At the Busovaca secondary school.
8 Q. And he was brought when you were on the
9 shift, when you were on duty. Did you talk to this Mr.
11 A. No, I simply knew him. I knew him from
12 before because he would come for prescriptions for
13 medicine for himself and for his children and we knew
14 each other.
15 Q. And you said that Mr. Aleksovski in person
16 brought him there?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Do you recall if on that occasion Mr.
19 Aleksovski asked or requested some special treatment of
20 that individual?
21 A. Quite a number of them were referred for home
22 treatment, for treatment at home and I think he was
23 also recommended for treatment at home.
24 Q. Mrs. Stapic, have you heard of some
25 interventions, I mean medical interventions that are
1 performed at the Kaonik facility by personnel of the
2 health centre?
3 A. Yes, there were such cases, but I didn't go
5 Q. Do you know what kind of interventions were
7 A. Well, if some medicines had to be taken there
8 or perhaps some injections, then one of us went. I
9 know when Mr. Zlatko would call us, invite us to go
10 there or bring a patient if, for instance,
11 intermuscular injections were to be given, then a nurse
12 would go and administrate.
13 Q. But you were not among those?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Mrs. Stapic, tell us, in your practice, in
16 the former half of '93, at the health centre in
17 Busovaca, did you see patients, HVO soldiers, who came
18 there for treatment?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And what kind of interventions were those I
21 am now talking about HVO soldiers? What kind of
23 A. Excuse me, do you mean from the prison --
24 Q. No, no, I mean others.
25 A. Those were mostly injuries or other wounds,
1 wounds from firearms and other complaints.
2 Q. Have you heard or seen a soldier with HV
3 insignia being brought to the health centre?
4 A. No, we did not have such insignia and we did
5 not have any other army members at the health centre.
6 Q. But outside the health centre, as you're an
7 inhabitant of Busovaca and you move around there, did
8 you see a soldier with HV markings outside the health
9 centre somewhere?
10 A. No.
11 Q. Mrs. Stapic, by nature of your profession,
12 you closely communicated with the patients brought from
13 Kaonik, is that correct?
14 A. It is.
15 Q. What is your recollection, what was your
16 impression, your impressions you got about their
17 general state of health? I mean, their general
18 appearance, did you observe signs of any disease or any
19 epidemics among them or whatever?
20 A. No, nothing special. Well, perhaps there
21 were -- no, as a matter of fact, they were unshaved,
22 which is normal if one spends two or three days and
23 without shaving. But as for some contagious infectious
24 diseases, there were none.
25 Q. Were there any signs of skin diseases?
1 A. No, I don't remember, not on my shifts.
2 Q. Did you see they were perhaps
4 A. No, we partook of the same food, both the
5 health centre and the prison had the same food. I
6 mean, it came from the same kitchen.
7 Q. How do you know that?
8 A. Well, I do. All people under labour
9 obligations, received food from those barracks.
10 Q. Do you know what kind of barracks was it?
11 A. It was the barracks by the name of Draga.
12 Q. Where is this Draga barracks?
13 A. Well it is above it, perhaps a kilometre and
14 a half or two kilometres above Busovaca.
15 Q. In what direction?
16 A. Towards Kacuni.
17 Q. Mrs. Stapic, would you tell us, you've
18 already described how medical help was extended, how
19 the Kaonik patients were treated, but could you tell
20 me, did you, being on the medical personnel, did you
21 differentiate, did you make a distinction between these
22 and some other patients as to the regards the help they
24 A. No, no, there was absolutely no distinction
25 made because we never paid any attention to ethnic
1 origin or asked about someone's name. We would first
2 help that individual and after that we would note their
3 particulars down.
4 Q. Did you or do you know if any one on the
5 health centre personnel who refused to extend medical
6 help to a patient?
7 A. No, I don't know such cases.
8 Q. Let's go back for a moment to that particular
9 segment of time when patients were brought from Kaonik
10 to the health centre. Do you remember if they were
11 brought one by one or in groups?
12 A. Well, sometimes, at times one by one,
13 sometimes in groups. At times two or three would come
15 Q. Were they then escorted by several guards,
16 that is, somebody else in addition to Mr. Aleksovski,
17 or only one guard, that is only Mr. Aleksovski?
18 A. At times Mr. Aleksovski only, and at times
19 another guard.
20 Q. And did Mr. Aleksovski and the guard enter
21 the examination room, the surgery, or did the patients
22 come in by themselves?
23 A. Only the patients.
24 Q. Does it mean that you were alone with
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Do you recall a case when patients complained
3 to you about something or tried to draw your attention
4 to something that was not something -- something that
5 was not all right, something that was not proper?
6 A. Not to me.
7 Q. Mrs. Stapic, you said you lived in the
8 village of Skradno. I think the transcript misstated
9 the distance from Busovaca. Could you repeat, please,
10 what is the distance between Skradno and Busovaca?
11 A. Two kilometres.
12 Q. Two kilometres. Thank you.
13 We have no more questions for this witness,
14 Your Lordships.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Madam Stapic, you are now
16 going to respond to Mr. Niemann. We thought about
17 taking a break at 12.10. Perhaps we might take the
18 break now, and then you may cross-examine the witness
19 thereafter. Very well, we will take a 20-minute
21 --- Recess taken at 12.02 p.m.
22 --- On resuming at 12.22 p.m.
23 (The witness entered court)
24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Madam Stapic, now you will
25 respond to questions that will be put to you by
1 Mr. Niemann representing the Prosecutor. Thank you.
2 MR. NIEMANN: Your Honours, please
3 Cross-examined by Mr. Niemann
4 Q. Mrs. Stapic, I just wanted to ask you some
5 questions about the town you come from, or the village,
6 Skradno. Was that a predominantly Croatian village or
7 a predominantly Muslim village? What was the majority?
8 A. Skradno was 50 percent Muslim and 50 percent
10 Q. So about the same.
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Now, you mentioned, you spoke of Muslims
13 leaving in particular Busovaca, but did you see Muslim
14 people also leaving Skradno?
15 A. Some were leaving Skradno, yes, but a number
16 of Muslims remained in our village.
17 Q. And of those that left, did you know any of
18 them personally? Were they friends or associates in
19 any way?
20 A. Yes. My acquaintances and my friends, but I
21 don't remember their names.
22 Q. Do you know -- did you discuss with them the
23 reason why they were leaving? Was that ever mentioned
24 at that time?
25 A. No, because we didn't know anything at the
2 Q. Now, those people that left your village, did
3 they ever come back, or they stayed away all the time?
4 A. They are coming back now. This started a
5 month ago, two months ago. They started coming back.
6 Q. Why are they coming back now? Do you know?
7 A. No.
8 Q. And those that are coming back, are they
9 moving into their houses or are they moving into new
10 ones or different ones?
11 A. They are coming back to their houses, yes.
12 Q. During the course of the war in 1993, were
13 you aware of or did you know of the existence of
14 trenches being placed around Skradno?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Did you know that conflicts were taking place
17 in the immediate vicinity of Skradno?
18 A. No. There were no conflicts before the 25th
19 of January.
20 Q. Now, I am talking about after January 25th.
21 A. I haven't understood you. I'm sorry.
22 Q. I'll repeat my question. After the 25th of
23 January, were you aware that there was military
24 conflict going on in trenches around and near the
25 vicinity of Skradno?
1 A. There was no fighting in the area where I
2 lived. There was shooting, but I didn't know where it
3 came from.
4 Q. I see. Did you see any of the Muslim people
5 that had left Skradno return to that village or return
6 to the vicinity of that village during the course of
7 the war in the early part of 1993?
8 A. They started coming back only recently, this
10 Q. Okay. Now, did you stay in Skradno during
11 the conflict or did you move into Busovaca?
12 A. Yes. I have a house in the village of
13 Skradno, and I didn't move out.
14 Q. And it was quite safe, was it, for you to
15 travel from Busovaca down to Skradno and back and forth
16 each day?
17 A. No, it was not safe. But we went anyway.
18 One of our colleagues was even wounded on the road.
19 Q. Do you know a person that came to the clinic
20 by the name of Hamdo Dautovic?
21 A. No.
22 Q. How many nurses were in the medical centre?
23 A. Maybe about 15.
24 Q. And did you work night-shifts or day-shifts,
25 or was it a mixture?
1 A. We worked -- we would work for 24 hours and
2 then we would be free, off duty, for 48 hours.
3 Q. Do you remember an occasion when a prisoner
4 came from the Kaonik Prison to the medical centre and
5 he was so badly injured that he had trouble walking,
6 couldn't walk from the car? Do you remember any
7 incident like that?
8 A. No. Not while I was on duty.
9 Q. Just going back to the time when you say that
10 you saw columns of people, Muslim people, leaving
11 Busovaca. Can you remember what day that was or date
12 that was?
13 A. It was a Saturday and I think that it was the
14 23rd of January or a day before that. It was a
15 Saturday. I believe it was on the 23rd of January,
16 1993, yes.
17 Q. Now, when these people were in the column and
18 leaving Busovaca, did you see any policemen about or
19 any soldiers with them, or marching with them, beside
20 them, or escorting them?
21 A. Saturday is market day in Busovaca and the
22 town gets rather crowded. And this is something that I
23 did not observe -- that I didn't observe until my
24 colleague told me when we were in the laundry, when she
25 told me that Muslims were leaving to -- leaving for the
1 neighbouring Muslim villages. And at that point we got
2 out, our physician and this colleague of mine, we got
3 out of the building and indeed we saw people leaving,
4 women and children, people taking cattle away. There
5 was no escort whatsoever, police or anything.
6 Q. Not that you could see. Did you see where
7 the column ultimately went to, or did you just see it
8 as it went past?
9 A. On the road -- the road they took leads only
10 to the village of Kacuni.
11 Q. And when these people were in the column
12 leaving the town, were there men with them or was it
13 just women and children?
14 A. There were men as well.
15 Q. And why were they leaving Busovaca? Why were
16 these Muslim people in the column leaving Busovaca?
17 A. I don't know that.
18 Q. And did you ever ask anyone why they were
20 A. Well, later on, after everything happened,
21 after the outbreak of the conflict, then it all became
22 clear to us. But on that Saturday we didn't know
24 Q. Do you know what happened to the men that
25 were in Busovaca, the Muslim men? Do you know what
1 happened to them?
2 A. Some were leaving and some stayed in the
4 Q. And you know now, of course, that some went
5 to Kaonik Prison?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Now, the people that went to Kaonik Prison,
8 the men that you saw during the period of the conflict,
9 did you know them, any of them?
10 A. On that day when the conflict broke out, I
11 was at home, so I didn't know what was happening in the
13 Q. But did you know any of the -- know
14 personally any of the men, the Muslim men that were in
15 Kaonik Prison?
16 A. I knew them, but I don't know who was there.
17 Q. Yes. I know you didn't go there, but of the
18 people that you knew to be in Kaonik Prison, that's
19 what I am asking about. These people were people of
20 good reputation and good citizens of the area, were
21 they, prior to the war?
22 A. Well, I used to know my neighbours and --
23 Q. Did any of your neighbours go to Kaonik
25 A. Yes, but I can't remember their names right
2 Q. I am not asking you to remember their names.
3 I know it's hard to do that. But the neighbours that
4 went to Kaonik Prison that you can't remember their
5 names, they were, apart from being Muslim, they were
6 good citizens of the area, I take it?
7 A. They were. We didn't have any problems prior
8 to that.
9 Q. And so whenever they came to the clinic, the
10 prisoners came to the clinic for medical treatment,
11 there was no need for them to be tied up or restrained,
12 because they weren't criminals, were they?
13 A. No, they were not tied up at the medical
14 centre. They were not brought into the medical centre
15 in handcuffs.
16 Q. Have you ever had prisoners, I am talking
17 about prisoners who had been convicted of serious
18 crimes, brought into your medical centre during any
19 time, any part of your experience, other than this
20 period when the Muslim prisoners were being brought
22 A. No.
23 Q. So this is your only experience with
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Now, you mentioned that a lot of the
2 prisoners had chronic type ailments which they had had
3 for some time, but I take it that some of them were
4 injured as well that you saw, some of the Muslim
5 prisoners that were brought in from Kaonik had been
7 A. Yes, I remember one of them who had bruises
8 on his back. I'm not sure what his name was, but I
9 think that his surname was Sivro.
10 Q. Now, you would have, from your experience
11 during the war, have gained some experience in
12 determining what are war wounds, people who injure
13 themselves in war, like bullet wounds and those sorts
14 of flesh wounds? I take it, you've got some experience
15 in that?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. And it would be easy now, from your
18 experience, to differentiate between people who had war
19 wounds and people who had the sort of illnesses and
20 injuries that came from Kaonik?
21 A. It was the first time that we came across
22 such -- this type of injuries. Of course I know the
23 difference between wounds and other ailments.
24 Q. Yes. Did you ever find out -- you mentioned
25 a gentleman by the name of Ismet Medjuseljac, if I've
1 got his name correctly, Medjuseljac. You said he had
2 an ulcer. Do you know what it was that exacerbated or
3 made his ulcer worse such that he needed medical
5 A. I know that he came to see the doctor, and I
6 know him personally. However, I don't remember what
7 exactly it was the doctor prescribed. I believe it
8 included home treatment. Anyhow, our doctor and we, we
9 did what was our duty. I don't know whether it was all
10 done later on at home and whether it was carried out.
11 I don't know. We couldn't know that.
12 Q. Do you know why home treatment was considered
13 so important for these people who had come from Kaonik
15 A. Well, it's the doctor's decision as to who
16 should receive home treatment. If the doctor says so,
17 prescribes home treatment, then this should be
19 Q. Yes. Yes. I accept that. But my question
20 is really do you know why the doctors considered home
21 treatment important for people who were at the Kaonik
23 A. Well, so that they could have better
24 conditions. I mean, it would have been better for them
25 to be at home, and so that adequate therapy can be
1 applied and so on.
2 Q. You said that some of them were unshaved,
3 this is the prisoners that had been brought from Kaonik
4 Prison. Were some of them -- were they dirty as well
5 as being unshaved, that you could see?
6 A. Well, some of them had dirty clothes, maybe
7 because they wouldn't change their clothes for two or
8 three days, but this is normal.
9 Q. Now, you spoke of the fact that you ate the
10 same food that went to the prison. What was the food?
11 Could you describe the food that you ate at the medical
13 A. We received food, cooked food in parts.
14 Usually we would have beans, rice, pasta, potatoes. It
15 would have been kind of stew most of the cases, cooked
16 food in any case.
17 Q. I think you said that this was provided to
18 all people who had labour obligations. Is that right?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Now, did you understand the prisoners in
21 Kaonik to have labour obligations at that time?
22 A. I don't know.
23 Q. I take it, the guards would have had labour
24 obligations? Is that true, the guards would have been
25 people who had labour obligations, guards at Kaonik
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And I suppose, because you didn't go to
4 Kaonik, you really couldn't tell me whether or not the
5 guards were the only people to get the food as opposed
6 to the prisoners, or if anything happened to the food,
7 diluted or changed in any way? You couldn't tell me
8 that, could you?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Do you know how the people -- the prisoners
11 at Kaonik were selected for medical treatment? Did you
12 find that out at any stage? If you don't understand my
13 question, say so, and I'll explain.
14 A. We examined persons who were brought to us.
15 As to how they were selected, I couldn't tell you that.
16 Q. You mentioned in the evidence Dr. Mioc. Do
17 you know Dr. Mioc at all? Have you ever kept contact
18 after the war, when Dr. Mioc left?
19 A. No.
20 Q. You don't know where Dr. Mioc is now?
21 A. No.
22 Q. What about Dr. Markovic? Have you kept
23 contact with Dr. Markovic?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Do you remember at any stage during 1993, Dr.
1 Mujezinovic from Vitez coming down and working at the
2 clinic there, Muhamed Mujezinovic?
3 A. No, we didn't have a physician. No, he
4 didn't come to our centre.
5 MR. NIEMANN: No further questions.
6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, do you have
7 any questions?
8 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Honour, maybe only one
9 question with your permission.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Please go ahead, Mr.
12 Re-examined by Mr. Mikulicic.
13 Q. Could you please tell us if you as a nurse
14 working at the medical centre in Busovaca, if you ever
15 found yourself in a situation where patients who were
16 brought in from Kaonik, that they knew on what grounds
17 they were being kept at Kaonik? Were they criminals
18 serving sentence, undergoing some sort of disciplinary
19 measures or were they just civilians who were detained
20 at Kaonik and could you personally distinguish between
21 these categories?
22 A. They were civilians who were accommodated.
23 Q. Yes, but do you know on what grounds? Could
24 you tell that as part of the contact that you had with
25 them at the time, were you aware of that, of the
1 reasons why?
2 A. No.
3 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, we have no further
5 Examined by Judge Rodrigues
6 Q. Madam Stapic, do you know what was the ethnic
7 origin of the patients who came from Kaonik?
8 A. You mean their nationality?
9 Q. No, what was the ethnic origin, whether or
10 not whether they were Muslims or Serbs or Croatian?
11 A. They were Muslims.
12 Q. Were they exclusively Muslim?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Another thing, Madam Stapic, do you have the
15 impression that these patients also knew what your
16 ethnic origin was?
17 A. We knew each other very well, so I think they
18 knew, yes.
19 Q. Another question, Madam Stapic. You just
20 answered to Mr. Mikulicic that you did not know the
21 reasons for which, inter alia, the person that you knew
22 well, the reasons as I said, the reasons for which
23 these persons were in Kaonik. But do you know or did
24 you know whether they were your neighbours and perhaps
25 you knew their lives very well, did you know whether or
1 not these persons had committed any criminal acts to be
2 placed in Kaonik?
3 A. Well, I don't know what these people had
4 done. We were doing our job simply.
5 Q. In any case, when you state that they were
6 your neighbours, what distance did they live in
7 relation to your home, approximately?
8 A. Maybe 500 metres.
9 Q. But, in any case, you say that you do not
10 know why these people were in Kaonik, I am referring
11 inter alia to the persons that you personally knew?
12 Let me ask you this question another way. Did you have
13 any Croat neighbours who were Croatian like yourself?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And you did not talk with your Croat
16 neighbours about why these persons were in Kaonik?
17 A. On that first day when the conflict broke
18 out, there was shooting coming from the surrounding
19 villages and there was chaos in the town and then,
20 simply, I mean HVO soldiers detained these people.
21 Q. Perhaps you might know that the persons that
22 you knew were at Kaonik because the soldiers brought
23 them there?
24 A. Yes, the conflict has just begun and they
25 were taken to Kaonik.
1 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Yes, thank you very much,
2 Madam Stapic, you have just completed your testimony
3 here before this International Criminal Tribunal. We'd
4 like to thank you for coming and appearing here before
5 us and we wish you a pleasant return trip to your
6 country. Thank you.
7 (The witness withdrew)
8 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic.
9 MR. MIKULICIC: Your Lordships, we should
10 like to call our next witness, Mrs. Ankica Cosic.
11 (The witness entered court)
12 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Good afternoon. Can you
13 hear me?
14 THE WITNESS: I do.
15 JUDGE RODRIGUES: I ask that you read the
16 solemn declaration that the court usher has presented
17 to you.
18 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
19 speak the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the
21 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Please be seated. Are you
22 comfortable madam?
23 THE WITNESS: Yes, thank you.
24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: You are now going to
25 respond to questions put to you by Mr. Mikulicic, who
1 is there.
2 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you, Your Honour
3 Examined by Mr. Mikulicic
4 Q. Good afternoon, Ms. Cosic.
5 A. Good afternoon to you.
6 Q. I hope you are accommodated properly. I am
7 the Defence counsel for Mr. Aleksovski and I will ask
8 you a few questions and ask you to answer them to the
9 best of your recollection. Now, only for the record,
10 Mrs. Cosic, will you please tell us your date and place
11 of birth?
12 A. 12th of March, 1958.
13 Q. And where were you born?
14 A. Krcevine, Municipality of Busovaca.
15 Q. And where do you live?
16 A. In Busovaca, that is the locality itself. In
17 the environs, the village of Skradno.
18 Q. You say you live in the village of Skradno,
19 how far is it from the Town of Busovaca?
20 A. Two, I should say 2 kilometres.
21 Q. Tell us something about your education?
22 A. I came from the secondary medical school,
23 from nurse's school?
24 Q. Where did you attend that school?
25 A. In Zenica.
1 Q. Which stream?
2 A. General medical stream.
3 Q. When did you complete your education?
4 A. 1978.
5 Q. And after that you found a job?
6 A. I got the job at the health centre in
7 Busocava in 1982.
8 Q. And you have been on this staff ever since?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. You are still on their staff?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Mrs. Cosic, what is your ethnic origin and
13 are you a believer, if yes, what?
14 A. I am a Croat and a Roman Catholic.
15 Q. You said you lived in the village of Skradno,
16 could you tell us something about the ethnic structure
17 of the village of Skradno and I mean the time before
18 the complete breakout in the Municipality of Busovaca?
19 A. The ethnic structure, well, you could say
20 that it was 50/50, 50 per cent Croats and 50 per cent
22 Q. Do you remember the time when the conflict
23 commenced in the village of Busovaca?
24 A. Yes, I do remember.
25 Q. Do you know when that was?
1 A. On the 25th of January, '93.
2 Q. Why has this date stuck in your memory, what
3 happened then?
4 A. On the 25th of January, I worked, I was on
5 duty there at the emergency. Therefore from seven
6 o'clock in the morning until seven o'clock in the
7 evening. And before the shift we were warned that our
8 colleague who was to take over, could not come. That
9 he could not come because something was going on. And
10 that was how that began to consult with each other
11 about what was happening.
12 Q. And so what was happening?
13 A. In the morning, my fellow knows, my colleague
14 let me go home, saying that she would manage about the
15 shift and I waited for some understanding because I had
16 four children at home. And she had, who to look after
17 her children, and a male colleague said that because of
18 his personal safety he wouldn't dare, that the roads to
19 Kacuni were closed and that all the passers by, all the
20 workers, were coming back because the couldn't get
21 through because there was fire.
22 Q. You mentioned Kacuni, do you know what was
23 the ethnic structure of Kacuni at the time?
24 A. The majority there were Muslims. There were
25 also Croats, but Muslims constituted a majority.
1 Q. Do you remember, perhaps, if that day or
2 perhaps the day before or the day after an incident
3 took place in the village of Kacuni?
4 A. Yes, yes, my colleague, therefore, remained
5 on duty. And when it was decided when I would come
6 next time when I (inaudible) obligation, she then told
7 me that up there, a man of ours was killed and his name
8 was Ivica Petrovic. And there was another young man
9 with him, but I didn't remember his name. I forgot his
10 name, whereas this one came from our village and that
11 is why I remember what he wasn't called.
12 Q. Did your colleague first tell you how those
13 two were killed, did you know anything about that?
14 A. I don't remember the details, I don't.
15 Q. Do you know how they were killed? Was it
16 from firearms or from what he said?
17 A. From her words, I gathered that somebody
18 fired at them, that they were passing by in a car, what
19 was a business or what errand, I wouldn't know, I don't
20 know those particulars, but I think somebody fired at
21 them. And after that as if they were harassed because
22 there were also some knife wounds.
23 Q. And how large was the staff of the health
24 centre, I mean the nurses and the medical personnel?
25 A. I wouldn't know exactly, but I think
1 somewhere between 60 and 70, but I wouldn't know the
2 exact figure.
3 Q. How was the work organised in those shifts?
4 A. Well, we worked for 24 hours and then were
5 for 48 hours off, three to four nurses, sometimes even
6 five nurses, perhaps if one of us could simply put up
7 with it, if we could manage it. It depended, of
8 course, if necessity arose then.
9 Q. Mrs. Cosic, do you remember that Busovaca was
10 shelled at the same period of time?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Could you tell us if you saw it, of course,
13 or if you remember, where did these shells come from,
14 where were they fired from?
15 A. From the surroundings, I cannot remember
16 exactly. I cannot remember, bring back this period of
17 time. It was a long time ago.
18 Q. But you say from the surroundings, you mean
19 adjacent areas?
20 A. Yes, adjacent areas.
21 Q. Will you tell us was it the slopes of the
22 mountains around Busovaca or was it low lands?
23 A. I don't remember those details.
24 Q. Mrs. Cosic, you said you took shifts and that
25 one shift was 24 hours and that then you would have 48
1 hours off, did you go home to take a rest or did you
2 stay there?
3 A. I went home, I went home.
4 Q. And how did you go home? Did you have some
5 organised transport or did you walk there?
6 A. Well, each of us somehow managed by herself,
7 but mostly on foot, yes.
8 Q. Yes, I'm sorry I interrupted you.
9 A. Well, the situation was too difficult, you
10 could not organise the transport. So each one had to
11 somehow manage by herself to see about how she would
12 come to work and then go home.
13 Q. Was it dangerous?
14 A. Oh, yes, yes, it was dangerous.
15 Q. Why was it dangerous?
16 A. Well, because of the shelling, because of the
17 shelling. We never knew how we would fair. My
18 colleague, a colleague of mine was wounded right in
19 front of the health centre. She was leaving and I was
20 coming to take over and nothing happened to me, but
21 something happened to her and that is why we were
23 Q. Mrs. Cosic, will you tell us, what were
24 basically -- what kind of house services did the health
25 centre offer, basically? Could you hospitalise your
1 patients or was it only the primary care?
2 A. Well, we did our best to extend the most
3 adequate care as possible, but it was just primary care
4 by and large.
5 Q. Was there a room in the health centre, a room
6 where you could accommodate a patient who needed rest,
7 shall we say, or home care and things like that?
8 A. We usually send people home.
9 Q. No, I am asking you if there was a room
10 within the health centre where they could perhaps lie
11 down and stay under the medical control?
12 A. Oh, no, not on the premises of the health
14 Q. So, if a patient was prescribed home care, it
15 was because the health centre simply could not provide
16 adequate accommodation for them, is it true?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Mrs. Cosic, could you tell us, please,
19 something about the supply, medical supply, medicines
20 or other medical supplies, did you have enough of
22 A. There were no shortages, the manager and the
23 director and that the head nurse took care of this.
24 We, the rest of us, of the paramedical medical staff
25 did not observe any shortages.
1 Q. And generally speaking, something about the
2 supplies, will you tell us, power supply, water supply,
3 clothes, footwear, food?
4 A. As for water supply, the water piping was
5 damaged during the shelling on the 26th of April, 1992,
6 so that we had to make do with certain things. And
7 there were some shortages or whatever. We did have it
8 and we didn't. By in large we did have enough water.
9 And as for the electricity, there were power cuts and
10 then we would be helped by UNPROFOR because they
11 supplied us with power from their sources from their
12 generating units.
13 Q. Did you cooperate with the UNPROFOR battalion
14 in some other ways?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Could you tell us what kind of cooperation if
17 you remember?
18 A. Well, they were helping us with the manager.
19 They would receive, whenever something would crop up,
20 about medicine or other necessities. So we were not
21 all that informed, but we were simply wise to this
23 Q. You mentioned medicine, Ms. Cosic, was there
24 a pharmacy in Busovaca?
25 A. In the town, no, no, in the town, there
2 Q. When you say in the town, no, but was there
3 one working somewhere else?
4 A. I mean within the health centre, yes, I
5 cannot really remember that.
6 Q. Yes, I can see that. I understand, after
7 all, it was six years ago.
8 A. Yes, yes, and I want to tell the truth.
9 Q. Of course, Mrs. Cosic, that is what is
10 expected of you. Mrs. Cosic, what was the structure, I
11 mean the ethnic structure of patients treated at the
12 health centre in Busovaca? Did this patient population
13 include all the Croats and Muslims and Serbs or what
14 was it during?
15 A. Do you mean during the conflict?
16 Q. I mean before and during.
17 A. Well, ethnic structure, there were all
18 Croats, Muslims, and Serbs before and after. Except
19 that afterwards there were fewer. I mean fewer because
20 this population had already left before the conflict.
21 They were not there.
22 Q. When you say that the population left before
23 the conflict, can you tell us something more about it,
24 what do you know about it and how do you know it?
25 A. I know it because on the 24th and that was a
1 day when I worked and prior to that, these people were
2 getting ready and leaving.
3 Q. Could you please be more accurate, more
4 definite when you say "these people," whom do you mean?
5 A. I mean the Muslim people. Inhabitants. A
6 worker who worked on the 24th, I don't know her
7 surname, I think her name was Senida, that was her
8 first name, she used to say herself that their
9 relatives, friends, neighbours, were going and she was
10 talking to me and said, and I don't know why they're
11 going. And I turned to her and said that I didn't know
12 why they were leaving, I wasn't clear about that, about
14 Q. Could you try to recall if it was before the
15 24th when you said that the conflict started or was it
16 after that?
17 A. No, it was before that.
18 Q. Mrs. Cosic, you also mentioned that even some
19 of the employees of the health centre were of different
20 ethnic origin, did you perhaps notice if the personnel
21 of Muslim origin also left prior to the conflict?
22 A. Yes, yes.
23 Q. Could you tell us something about that?
24 A. In December already some of them were
25 mentioning, some were talking about days in January
1 about holidays, which baffled me slightly. And later
2 on, of course, I understood some other facts.
3 Q. What was it that you understood subsequently,
4 could you tell us, what facts?
5 A. Well, I realised that I perhaps knew that
6 something was afoot, well about the conflict on the
7 25th. I mean when it broke out, then I simply related
8 this with that.
9 Q. Mrs. Cosic, the interpreters ask you to speak
10 a little slower if possible, so will you please slow
11 down for the sake of proper interpretation. Mrs.
12 Cosic, are you familiar with a place Kaonik?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Are you familiar with the facility, Kaonik?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. How do you know about them?
17 A. I live near Kaonik. It used to be the
18 barracks of the former Yugoslav Peoples Army. And
19 afterwards it was a prison, something, a prison.
20 Q. Mrs. Cosic, do you remember, when was it that
21 the JNA left the barracks?
22 A. I wouldn't know the exact date.
23 Q. But would you know the year?
24 A. '92.
25 Q. Was it the former or the latter half?
1 A. I think it was the former half.
2 Q. Mrs. Cosic, could you tell us, when was it
3 that you met for the first time, patients coming from
5 A. Could you please be more clear.
6 Q. Well, you were a nurse in the health centre
7 in Busovaca and you treated, you extended medical help
8 to patients who came to your room. When was it that
9 you helped, the first time, the patients who were
10 brought from Kaonik? When did it start?
11 A. It started in -- it was in early February.
12 Q. Mrs. Cosic, do you know who brought those
13 patients from Kaonik to the health centre in Busovaca?
14 A. Yes, I do.
15 Q. Will you tell us?
16 A. Zlatko Aleksovski, director.
17 Q. When did you meet Mr. Aleksovski for the
18 first time?
19 A. I met him then, when he brought prisoners
20 from the prison.
21 Q. You said it was sometime in early February
22 '92. Did you have an opportunity to talk to
23 Mr. Aleksovski on various occasions?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Would you recognise him if you saw him today?
1 A. Yes, I would.
2 Q. Mrs. Cosic, would you then look around the
3 courtroom and tell us if you see Mr. Aleksovski in it.
4 Sorry. Could you tell us where Mr. Aleksovski is
6 A. Behind you
7 MR. MIKULICIC: Thank you. For the record,
8 please, Mr. Aleksovski.
9 Q. You said Mr. Aleksovski used to bring
10 patients from the Kaonik facility. Was he alone or did
11 somebody else bring them in?
12 A. Yes, but Zlatko brought them as a rule. And
13 he would also bring them escorted by guards.
14 Q. Mrs. Cosic, did you ever witness the entry of
15 patients from Kaonik in the health centre? Do you know
16 how they were brought in? Was it a passenger car or
17 some other kind of vehicle? Do you know anything about
19 A. I think that Zlatko brought them in a car, in
20 a passenger car.
21 Q. Will you tell me if he would bring in --
22 bring them in himself or bring them one by one or
24 A. Sometimes -- at times he would bring two or
25 one. That's as far as I can remember.
1 Q. Did you, perhaps, notice if those individuals
2 were tied or handcuffed or something like that?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Could you tell us, if you remember, what was
5 the procedure of admission? How were they admitted to
6 the health centre and then extended help? It is my
7 understanding that there is a kind of waiting room or
8 something like that in the health centre. Did they
9 come into the waiting room or what?
10 A. Well, like everybody else. I mean, they
11 would come and then Zlatko would talk to us, or a
12 doctor, and tell him or us that he had brought them.
13 And then we screened them. If it was something urgent,
14 then we would admit them immediately or, if not, they
15 waited like everybody else.
16 Q. Does it mean that they waited in the waiting
17 room together with other patients?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And tell us, who were those other patients?
20 A. Other patients. There were wounded or sick,
21 like that.
22 Q. Let us talk for a while of this category of
23 the wounded. Can you tell us who were those
24 individuals? Were they civilians or soldiers?
25 A. They were both civilians and soldiers.
1 Q. Were they HVO soldiers or some other
2 soldiers? Could you tell us something about that?
3 A. They were HVO soldiers.
4 Q. And does it mean that at the same time, at
5 the same place, in the waiting room of the health
6 centre, the HVO soldiers and patients from Kaonik
7 waited to be examined? Was it the normal situation?
8 Was it uncommon?
9 A. That was the usual situation.
10 Q. Do you, perhaps, remember if some conflict --
11 if some incident ever broke out in the waiting room
12 between these two groups of people?
13 A. Perhaps if they recognised each other, but we
14 tried to take care and look to prevent it, to forestall
15 it in time so as to prevent it.
16 Q. But did it ever happen?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Mrs. Cosic, you had contact with
19 Mr. Aleksovski. Do you remember what kind of clothes
20 he wore? Was it some uniform or civilian clothes or
21 how did he dress?
22 A. Well, sometimes he would be in a uniform and
23 sometimes he would be in civilian clothes.
24 Q. Do you remember if on the uniform, on those
25 occasions when he wore a uniform, did he ever have any
1 insignia or markings to indicate his membership in some
2 military force?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Is it that you don't remember or that he
5 didn't have any such markings?
6 A. No, he did not have them.
7 Q. Mrs. Cosic, let's go back to those patients
8 that you helped and who were brought from Kaonik. What
9 were their complaints? What were their health problems
10 that they had? Do you remember?
11 A. Mostly stomach disorders, as a rule. I
12 cannot remember all the details, but that was that.
13 Q. So you remember they had some stomach
14 disorders. Were there some other ailments or something
16 A. No. Those were usually chronic diseases,
17 chronic disorders.
18 Q. What kind of therapy did you administer to
19 those cases?
20 A. Well, with documentation, if some of them had
21 it, then we would see what was -- what ailment was
22 about. If not, then the doctor would examine him and
23 then decide on it. It was usually parenteral therapy.
24 Q. We are all layman. Could you please explain
25 to us what does parenteral mean?
1 A. I mean injections.
2 Q. Tell us, did these individuals have to come
3 for control, for subsequent control after a period of
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Did they come for control examination?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And if there was any need for some -- for the
9 medication, for medicines to be administered to those
10 patients, how did that function?
11 A. I don't remember.
12 Q. Mrs. Cosic, you said that, as far as the
13 patients in the health centre were concerned, you had
14 communication both with patients of Muslim origin and
15 of Croat origin. Did you ever differentiate as regards
16 the services that you extended to these two categories
17 of patients?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Did you ever ask anyone, did you inquire of
20 the ethnic origin of a patient?
21 A. No. No.
22 Q. Mrs. Cosic, I mentioned the Kaonik facility.
23 Did you visit at that facility ever?
24 A. Once.
25 Q. Was it before or after the conflict?
1 A. During the conflict.
2 Q. What took you there?
3 A. It was a treatment. I had to apply the
4 treatment prescribed by a doctor, and it had to be done
5 in the prison. So I went there and gave a shot.
6 Q. And where did it take place? What kind of a
8 A. It was -- there was first a passage, and I
9 think it was to the left, there was a room with guards
10 and a man who, perhaps for an hour prior to my arrival
11 -- I am saying that was the case, my impression at the
12 time, who had been to the health centre and who had
13 been examined in the health centre, and it had been
14 decided that if he didn't feel well, that he would be
15 given an injection and that a nurse would come. And
16 all that was needed was for Zlatko to make a call. And
17 that was how I went to the prison.
18 Q. If I understood you properly, Mrs. Cosic,
19 that patient that you are referring to, before your
20 intervention, had been brought to the health centre for
21 treatment; is that correct?
22 A. Yes. Yes.
23 Q. Then he was taken back to Kaonik. And after
24 that you received a call from Mr. Aleksovski asking you
25 to come and administer the treatment?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. I see. And what was that building that you
3 saw in Kaonik?
4 A. I don't remember. It was nighttime and I had
5 not been to that place before that.
6 Q. Do you remember the interior of that
7 building? You said there was a passage and that to the
8 left there was a room with guards. Did you see any
9 other rooms in that building?
10 A. No, I did not.
11 Q. And on that occasion did you have an
12 opportunity to communicate with individuals who are in
13 that building; I mean, those who were detained there?
14 Could you communicate with them?
15 A. No. No, I could not.
16 Q. Did you have an opportunity or did you see
17 the atmosphere or the setting, the facilities in that
18 building? I mean lighting, hygienic, sanitary
19 conditions, things like that.
20 A. I was there for a very short while and I did
21 not -- the conditions there did not seem to me all that
22 bad. I mean, in view of the situation that we are all
24 Q. Do you remember if that room that you were
25 in, was it heated, was there any heating? Was it cold?
1 A. I don't remember.
2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Mr. Mikulicic, can you tell
3 us how much longer you would need to complete your
4 examination in chief, or shall we continue tomorrow?
5 MR. MIKULICIC: Your lordships, I think it
6 would be more advisable to adjourn for the day,
7 continue tomorrow, simply because I do not want --
8 because I want to proceed at a normal pace. I do not
9 really want to speed things unnecessarily up.
10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: Yes, you are right. Very
11 well, Mr. Mikulicic. We shall continue tomorrow at
12 9.00. No, I stand corrected. At 13.30, 1.30. Very
13 well, we will be sitting at 1.30 p.m. until 5.30 p.m.,
14 the same time period of work, but tomorrow we will
15 transfer that time period to the afternoon. That is
16 all. See you tomorrow.
17 --- Whereupon hearing adjourned at 1.30 p.m.
18 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 17th day
19 of June, 1998.