1 Wednesday, 26 November 2003.
2 [Open session]
3 [The witness entered court]
4 [The accused entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.17 p.m.
6 JUDGE LIU: Call the case, please, Mr. Court Deputy.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is Case Number
8 IT-02-60-T, the Prosecutor versus Vidoje Blagojevic and Dragan Jokic.
9 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
10 Mr. Stojanovic, are you ready to continue?
11 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Good
12 afternoon. We are ready to continue where we left it off on Monday.
13 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Please proceed.
14 WITNESS: RICHARD JOHN BUTLER [Resumed]
15 Cross-examined by Mr. Stojanovic: [Continued]
16 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Butler, let me just remind you, on Monday we
17 finished with the statement by Nenad Simic who said that on the night
18 between the 14th and the 15th he was in the headquarters of the Zvornik
19 Brigade and that the deputy brigade commander Obrenovic was present at
20 that time and that an officer from the command called Ljubo was given
21 certain orders. In my introduction I just wanted to ask you whether you
22 would be able to tell us what Nenad Simic is, who was this officer and
23 what duties did he discharge at that time?
24 A. If I recall correctly, Nenad Simic was a major and at that time he
25 was the assistant commander for morale, legal, and religious affairs of
1 the Zvornik Infantry Brigade.
2 Q. Am I right when I say that he was highly positioned in the brigade
3 formation, that he was a highly positioned officer in the command of the
4 Zvornik Brigade. Am I right in saying that?
5 A. Yes, sir. As an assistant commander, he would -- that's a high
7 Q. It transpired from the statement that he mentioned an officer
8 called Ljubo Bojanovic. Kindly tell us what duties did Ljubo Bojanovic
9 discharge at the time as one of the officers in the command of the Zvornik
11 A. My understanding - and again it's been a while since I've gone
12 over his name - is that he's also a major. He was a reserve major in the
13 VRS. And he functioned in the operations section of the Zvornik Infantry
14 Brigade. Now, again as also my understanding that this is the person,
15 Major Bojanovic, who replaced Lieutenant Dragan Nikolic at the IKM on the
16 evening of the 13th of July. I think we're talking about the same person
18 Q. I don't think we're talking about the same person. You mentioned
19 his position as something that I already understand was a fact. But I
20 believe that he was on the 13th replaced by some other officer called
21 Drago Mijatovic. Let us get out of the way before we move forward. Am I
22 right in thinking that?
23 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: I think just to help the translator I believe
25 Mr. Stojanovic said Mihajlo Galic was the person who replaced Drago
1 Nikolic at the forward command post. He said it quickly and I don't think
2 the translator caught it.
3 THE WITNESS: If that was the case, then -- that sounds familiar.
4 I just wasn't sure. Okay. I can check that over the break just to make
5 sure that the name is correct. I think it is Galic, but I will check over
6 the break.
7 MR. McCLOSKEY: Could we just, for the record, confirm what
8 Mr. Stojanovic actually said, just so I'm not hearing things. I don't
9 want -- if we could clear that up.
10 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
11 Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, can you confirm that name?
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Let's avoid any
13 misunderstandings. I accept what Mr. Butler said about the position of
14 the operations officer in the command of the Zvornik Brigade as being
15 Ljubo Bojanovic. However, Ljubo Bojanovic was not the person who replaced
16 Drago Nikolic at the forward command post on the 13th of July 1995. It
17 was another officer whose name was Mihajlo Galic. So if this is now the
18 translation that you are receiving, then I believe that the OTP,
19 Mr. Butler, and myself are on the same page.
20 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir, and, in fact, checking my report it was in
21 fact Major Galic who took over, not Major Bojanovic.
22 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler.
24 Now I would ask the usher to help us with putting Exhibit D45 in
25 front of the witness. This is a statement given by Ljubo Bojanovic.
1 I would kindly ask Mr. Butler and the Honourable Chamber to pay
2 attention to page 20, line 12 of the English version. We are talking
3 about the statement given by the operations officer Ljubo Bojanovic who
4 was interviewed by an investigator who asked him about the circumstances
5 and whether he saw Dragan Obrenovic. The witness replies: "I may have
6 seen him because he was in the barracks." When we were talking about
7 things, I believe that we did and I can't remember what this was. And
8 something I would like to draw your attention to. I know that on the 14th
9 we gathered in the operations duty's officers room and that for the third
10 time we sent a request to the corps command for the return of our unit led
11 by Colonel Pandurevic.
12 The investigator asks: "Who was with you in duty officer's room?"
13 "A. I know that Lieutenant Colonel Obrenovic was there. I can't
14 remember whether the chief of engineering Dragan was there as a duty
15 officer. I'm not sure. Sretan Milosevic, assistant commander for the
16 rear service, was there. That is that. That is the room.
17 "Q. What time of day -- that was on the 14th of July?
18 "A. It was between 17 and 1900 -- or, no, after 1900 hours.
19 "Q. Sorry. Can you just explain again what time that was.
20 "A. Between 1700 and 1900 hours. We were surprised that we
21 hadn't had a reply to our telegram that was sent before.
22 "Q. How long were you with Obrenovic and Milosevic and the duty
23 officer, whoever that was?
24 "A. Maybe 45 minutes up to one hour."
25 And then I would like to finish with this sentence: "Do you know
1 where Pandurevic was?
2 "A. He was in Srebrenica and so on and so forth."
3 The answer continues: "He went to see a doctor," and then another
4 thing that I wanted to underline. "On the 14th of July, do you recall
5 that you saw Major Obrenovic again?
6 "A. Yes, we were together in the duty officers' room and we sent
7 that dispatch to the corps headquarters," and this is where I would like
8 to finish quoting this witness.
9 My question to you is as follows: Is it possible, Mr. Butler --
10 do you give us that option that all these witnesses, Nada Stojanovic who
11 said that Obrenovic was there around 2200 hours. Mico Gajic who says that
12 about 0100 after midnight he saw him. Major Nenad Simic who confirms that
13 on that night he was there. And finally Ljubo Bojanovic who says that at
14 2.00 after midnight I received the order from him and he was present when
15 we sent the dispatch to the corps command. Is it possible that judging by
16 all of this Major Obrenovic was present at the headquarters of the Zvornik
17 Brigade at the moment when the interim combat report was sent?
18 A. Yes, sir. On the basis of these witness statements, that is
19 certainly a possibility that should be held open. I agree.
20 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. My further assistance on this would be
21 beside the point; however, I would like to ask you a few questions in
22 order to prove that there were other officers in the headquarters of the
23 Zvornik Brigade. Would you agree with me that it is logical or possible
24 that other officers of the command of the Zvornik Brigade were in the
25 headquarters on that night? I am referring primarily to Sretan Milosevic
1 and then to other high officers who admit that, that is, Ljubo Bojanovic
2 and Nenad Simic, the deputy commander for morale. Do you see this as a
3 possibility? Is this something that is possible?
4 A. Yes, sir, it is possible. And certainly under the circumstances,
5 it would be expected that those officers would be present.
6 Q. I'm asking all that for a simple reason. I would like you to
7 answer the following question: In the military structure, in a situation
8 when there are combat operations and there is a Muslim column arriving
9 towards the suburbs of Zvornik and the detainees are being brought in, if
10 we are right, in the headquarters there, Obrenovic, Milosevic, Nenad
11 Simic, Ljubo Bojanovic and other officers, because this is what is
12 required by the situation, would that then diminish or reduce the role of
13 the duty operations officer and the level of his obligations in all this?
14 A. Notwithstanding the question on the level of his obligations,
15 because I believe again you may be looking for a legal conclusion that I
16 cannot give. However, if the deputy commander Obrenovic is present in the
17 Zvornik Brigade during this period, it would certainly mitigate any
18 possibility that Major Jokic, as the duty officer, would have ever found
19 himself in a position to have to issue orders independent because he could
20 not reach the proper authority. So there is a link, obviously, between
21 the physical presence of the, at that time, deputy commander and the
22 limits to what Major Jokic could accomplish on his own as the duty
24 Q. I would like to go back to the count in the indictment in which it
25 says that the duty operations officer is a key person in the coordination
1 and communication between the higher officers and the lower officers, the
2 superiors and the subordinates. I am going to give you two intercepts
3 without wishing to depart from our initial thesis, and that is our
4 objection to these intercepts. However, I would like to hear your comment
5 on these intercepts. I would like us to see what the system of
6 decision-making is in the Zvornik Brigade. This is P239, P240. We have
7 enough copies. We can give them to you to save time so we can give our
8 copies both to the Honourable Chamber and to Mr. Butler.
9 In a nutshell, we are talking about the 15th of July in the
10 morning. You've already talked about that, and the moment is when the
11 commander of the Zvornik Brigade is returning to the brigade to the
12 command. So the period is between 8.00 and 8.50, or before 10.00, because
13 the second intercept was taken at 10.00. At the command of the Zvornik
14 Brigade we still have Dragan Jokic as the duty operations officer. Am I
15 right about the general context and the situation during which these two
16 intercepts were taken?
17 A. Yes, sir. My understanding is that these intercepts take place
18 between -- roughly 9.00 in the morning on 15 July and they involve Colonel
19 Pandurevic, the commander of the Zvornik Infantry Brigade, calling back to
20 get the situation with respect to what's been happening on the ground in
21 his unit. So I believe that's the context that you're referring to, sir.
22 Q. Precisely, Mr. Butler. I would kindly ask you to pay attention to
23 the conversation between Pandurevic, Milosevic, and Mijatovic at 0855
24 hours on the 15th of July. Can you please tell us who Milosevic is in the
25 command of the Zvornik Brigade, to assist the Chamber.
1 A. I believe in this case Milosevic is the assistant commander for
2 rear services of the Zvornik Infantry Brigade.
3 Q. And who is Mijatovic in the command of the Zvornik Brigade?
4 A. I believe he is, I think, a captain, but I do know that he does
5 work in the operations section. So he is an operations officer.
6 Q. Would you agree with me that both of them at the time are in the
7 headquarters of the Zvornik Brigade when they are talking to Commander
9 A. Yes, sir, I agree.
10 Q. Let's look at the conversation which took place at 10.00. At
11 10.00 it is Commander Pandurevic, the duty officer Jokic, and again
12 Mijatovic who are talking. Am I right, Mr. Butler?
13 A. This conversation, P240? Is that --
14 Q. Yes.
15 A. That's 0910, that's not 1000 hours. That's what my copy says.
16 But in this particular context, yes, it is Major Jokic and Colonel
17 Pandurevic and Mijatovic again.
18 Q. The conversation is as follows. Pandurevic says: "Put me through
19 to the duty operations officer immediately."
20 Then the duty operations officer replies and says: "This is
22 Pandurevic talks to Jokic and says: "This is Pandurevic. Put me
23 through to Mijatovic."
24 After that, Mijatovic informs him about the current situation on
25 the frontline. Am I right, Mr. Butler?
1 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
2 Q. Will you agree with me that this demonstrates that Pandurevic as
3 the brigade commander, in cases when there is a higher officer in the
4 command does not require information from the duty operations officer but
5 asks for information from the highest-positioned officer at the moment?
6 A. In looking at these two conversations specifically - and again
7 going back to the first one that we discussed which was P239 - in the
8 context of the conversation as I understand it, Major Milosevic makes it
9 clear that Mijatovic was -- I believe he said that he knows the area
10 better and he can explain and he gives an explanation. And then a few
11 minutes later after Pandurevic had instructed Mijatovic to call three
12 battalions again, the 4th, 6th and the 7th and report back, Pandurevic
13 wants to speak to Mijatovic again and have the answer, and that, of
14 course, is defined in P240. On the broader circumstances, given
15 Mijatovic's understanding of the situation, it is not surprising that
16 Colonel Pandurevic would want to hear that from Mijatovic as opposed to
17 Colonel Jokic -- I'm sorry, Major Jokic who would be Jokic getting the
18 same information from the operations officer. Within the context of these
19 two discussions I agree, certainly Colonel Pandurevic wants to talk to
20 Mijatovic [Realtime transcript read in error "Jokic"] because he believes
21 that that is the most recent and accurate information available.
22 Q. I apologise. I see that in the transcript it says Pandurevic
23 wants to talk to Jokic who has the most recent information. Are you here
24 referring to Mijatovic?
25 A. Either I misspoke or we missed it on the transcript. It is
1 Mijatovic who he wants to speak to, not Jokic.
2 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. Can we infer from these two conversations
3 that the highly positioned officers of the Zvornik Brigade Milosevic and
4 Mijatovic are fully informed about the situation in the zone of
5 responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade and that they are the ones who
6 report to their commanders, rather -- or before the duty operations
8 A. In this respect -- I don't know with respect to P239 why Milosevic
9 is the first correspondent that Pandurevic would be talking to. So I
10 can't answer how much he knows or does not know, except what's in the
11 intercept. And again, he makes it clear that Mijatovic knows the area
12 better. With respect to Mijatovic, obviously in the context of both
13 intercepts, he is very familiar with the military situation as it is
15 Q. Will we then agree that this is the officer who is more familiar
16 with the situation than the duty operations officer, because Pandurevic
17 asks that officer to report to him, although he speaks to Jokic first.
18 Because Jokic says -- Jokic speaking and then Pandurevic says: Put me
19 through to Mijatovic?
20 A. Yes, sir. But again you have to again keep 239 and 240 linked.
21 He does that because he'd just spoken to Mijatovic less than 10 minutes
22 prior and instructed him to call these formations and report back. So I
23 don't know whether it's a general awareness or whether he wants to speak
24 directly with Mijatovic because he had tasked Mijatovic to get information
25 for him.
1 Q. So according to the same principle, do we conclude that the
2 previous conversation -- in the previous conversation it wasn't a
3 conversation between Pandurevic and the operations duty officer, but
4 between Pandurevic, Milosevic and Mijatovic, so Pandurevic is asking them
5 for information if we follow the order of the telegrams. So based on that
6 can we conclude that Jokic is practically left out of the military
7 decision-making about the current situation because Pandurevic is asking
8 for a more senior officer and not the officer on duty?
9 A. Well, first a specific answer on this one. I don't know that
10 because what is unclear in P239 is why Milosevic is talking and why
11 Major Jokic is not. I obviously can't exclude that maybe Major Jokic
12 wasn't present for a few minutes when the phone rang or any number of
13 circumstances. So I just don't know why the conversation is going on with
14 Milosevic. I mean, from the first line of the intercept, it almost
15 appears to me that he's talking to Milosevic because he recognises his
16 voice; he's the person who picked up the phone. Again, I don't know that.
17 As for your broader question with respect to the military
18 situation, I think that you will have to read these intercepts in context
19 with the intercepts of 14 July 1995 where it's very clear that the duty
20 operations officer is quite familiar with the situation in the Zvornik
21 Brigade zone during that period. So having established that awareness
22 through the late evening hours of the 14th of July, I don't know how you
23 can then less than eight hours later draw a conclusion that he practically
24 knows nothing about the military situation in the zone. So I can't
25 ascribe to that conclusion that you offer, sir.
1 Q. Mr. Butler, that was not our conclusion. I won't insist on this
2 anymore, but I was interested in the military sense. Yes, it's definitely
3 the duty officer is somebody who is informed. That is not something that
4 we're disputing. But you as a military expert, in the hierarchy, if in
5 the command we have such a highly placed officer, the third ranking in the
6 command, the assistant commander for the rear, so chief, deputy commander,
7 and the assistant commander for rear services, is it normal for that
8 person to be then the person who would inform the commander rather than
9 the duty officer. The question wasn't whether he was informed or not, but
10 this, this was the question.
11 A. I would disagree with that insomuch as knowing that Major
12 Milosevic's role as the assistant commander for rear services and given
13 the context that we're discussing it's an operational issue. I'm not sure
14 that -- he may very well as a matter of practicality be quite well
15 informed. But as a logistician as opposed to an operations-type officer,
16 as a commander I would argue that the people that Pandurevic would want to
17 be talking to are operations people with respect to a military situation,
18 not necessarily his rear services commander.
19 Q. Precisely, Mr. Butler. Can we agree that Mijatovic is the
20 operations officer and that Pandurevic, knowing the hierarchy and knowing
21 the logic of things and the military way of thinking, is asking
22 information from the operations officer, such as Mijatovic, and not from
23 the duty officer, such as Jokic?
24 A. Again, that is reflected in 239. There is no reference to the
25 duty operations officer Jokic. There is a Milosevic who knows the broader
1 situation but makes it very clear that Mijatovic knows the details of the
2 situation on the ground. Again, the unknown question that reflects around
3 P239 is where was Major Jokic at the time of this conversation? Whether
4 he was present or not, I don't know the answer to that.
5 Q. According to your investigations, was Major Jokic at that point in
6 the command of the Zvornik Brigade and was he still performing the duties
7 of duty officer?
8 A. Yes, sir, he was.
9 Q. So can we conclude from that that at least he should have been at
10 the command of the Zvornik Brigade?
11 A. Yes, sir. He -- in fact, like I said, all of our information
12 indicates that the morning of the 15th July he was physically present at
13 the brigade command, yes, sir.
14 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Can we please now look at Exhibit P34, this is the -- P34, this is
17 an excerpt from the duty officer's logbook, Mr. Butler.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: Briefly, while we're waiting, just something that
19 may help clarification in the translation, I believe we've been referring
20 to that as the workbook. There is a duty officer logbook. I'm not
21 exactly sure which exhibit it is, but just if we could -- if it is the
22 workbook with the handwritten notes in it, it would be good for the
23 translators and for all of us to refer to it as the workbook, which is the
24 way I think it originally started out.
25 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
1 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, in order to
2 clarify, because I think both the Prosecutor and I know what this is
3 about. It's Exhibit P34 -- or 534 is the duty --
4 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel repeat the numbers again,
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] P507. So we're talking about
7 P534, I think we discussed this with Mr. Butler on Monday -- we prepared
8 this on Monday. So that is the duty officer's book that we haven't used
9 so far.
10 MR. McCLOSKEY: I guess we better get the exhibit so we can figure
11 out what it is. And I know -- it's an issue of translation as much as
13 JUDGE LIU: Yes, yes, I quite understand that.
14 MR. McCLOSKEY: And just for the record, P -- if we're talking
15 about 507, I've heard lots of numbers mentioned, but P507 is the -- what
16 we've been referring to as the duty officer workbook, those are the
17 handwritten entries that was provided by Mr. Obrenovic. There is a duty
18 officer logbook, which is a more formal document where things are also
19 handwritten. But that has not been a subject really yet of the
21 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
22 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir, I believe this is the document you're
23 referring to, P534 --
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: Now -- sorry, if we're talking P534, and Mr.
25 Butler can help us with that, that is the duty officer book of the
1 barracks, the guy in the guardshack in front. That's the barracks
2 logbook, and I know the translators are having to deal with all this. And
3 I think we'll all agree and it will become clear as the testimony
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I think now that we have dealt
6 with that, and I think that Mr. Butler has this document before him now.
7 I just wanted to point to one part of this exhibit, so this is the duty
8 officer's barracks logbook. That night soldier Djuric Milic was there. He
9 just happened to be the best man of Colonel Obrenovic. And he notes:
10 "Attendance was not taken due to activities on the ground."
11 And then he continues: "Only the operations duty officer and the
12 guards were in the barracks."
13 I think that you can see this part, Mr. Butler.
14 A. Yes, sir.
15 Q. Would you agree with me that we're talking about the night of the
16 14th and the 15th of July, 1995?
17 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
18 Q. Would you agree that then this does not comply with the statements
19 of all the witnesses who testified here, Simic, Nenad, and Ljubo
20 Bojanovic, who admitted themselves that they were at the barracks that
21 night and in the command of the Zvornik Brigade.
22 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection.
23 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: The reference, again, it may be a translation
25 issue, but these folks, Nenad Simic, Bojanovic, and others have not
1 testified here. In fact, there's been reference to their earlier
2 statements, but that certainly is not testimony and I think the record
3 should reflect that.
4 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, you have to be exact on that
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, that is correct. They
7 haven't testified before the Chamber yet, but on the 21st of September
8 2001 they provided a statement to the investigators. And these are the
9 statements we submitted to the Chamber. So in view of those statements
10 and in view -- now I'm coming back to Exhibit P507, so the duty officer's
11 workbook where on page 30 it states: "Wake up Milosevic and wake up
12 Ljubo Bojanovic."
13 Can we draw a logical conclusion based on all of that, Mr. Butler,
14 that there were other officers and superior officers from the command of
15 that unit in the Zvornik Brigade command at that time.
16 A. I would agree. I believe it's unrealistic to expect that
17 Major Jokic would be the only officer or superior officer in the brigade
18 headquarters at that time. There would be other ones and certainly Major
19 Milosevic, Major Simic, and others, they would probably be sleeping at the
20 garrison location; they wouldn't be going offsite. So I agree it's very
21 realistic or it's certainly very plausible that these officers would be
22 spending the night there.
23 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. I would now like for you to help us --
24 it's true we don't have a map here, but I think that you could probably
25 tell us just like that. According to the testimony of Obrenovic, that
1 night he was in the area called Parlog that evening. You know where that
2 area is, so could you please assist the Court and just tell us how much
3 Parlog and Krizevici are far from the command. Could you just give us a
4 rough number in kilometres.
5 A. Probably -- if I have the locations right, probably about -- since
6 it's not a direct route, then probably the road distance around 10
7 kilometres. I don't -- it's shorter straight line, but the roads of
8 course have to follow the terrain, so I think it's around 10 kilometres.
9 Q. Yes. We also did our estimates, and it is so. But let's just
10 confirm it, Mr. Butler. So when you go from Karakaj where the Zvornik
11 Brigade command is, then Orahovac, Krizevici, Parlog, it's an asphalt
12 road. Am I right?
13 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
14 Q. Can we agree that this asphalt road and these 10 kilometres can be
15 covered in 10 minutes in a vehicle?
16 A. In daylight in good conditions, I suspect so. At night-time they
17 would probably be -- especially if they believed that there was an enemy
18 around and they were driving under blackout or maybe without headlights, I
19 suspect it would take somewhat longer. Again, ideal conditions, yeah, 60
20 kilometres an hour is fine. I don't know that they're going to be driving
21 60 kilometres an hour on the evening of 14 July 1995.
22 Q. Would you agree with me that it's always less than half an hour.
23 You need less than half an hour to get to the front line from the command?
24 A. I believe it's fair, but again, it's not a drive I've done
25 certainly under those circumstances. So again, situation dependent. A
1 half hour sounds good under ideal conditions, but I have no way to answer
2 that during the days in question.
3 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. If you take this road, we agreed that you
4 have to pass through Orahovac. Is this correct?
5 A. You do take the road -- if you take that particular road, you will
6 pass through the greater area of Grivaci [phoen] and you do actually pass
7 through the small town of Orahovac, yes, sir, or village.
8 Q. Would you agree that Orahovac is one of the sites of the mass
9 executions and of the primary grave sites of those executed persons?
10 A. Yes, sir. On the right-hand side as you're going towards where
11 the front lines would have been, you have the school and gymnasium. And
12 then approximately 4 or 500 metres up the road on the left-hand side you
13 will have the meadows where the executions took place and where the two
14 primary graves were installed.
15 Q. So can we agree that one of those graves was very close to this
16 asphalt road that you had to use?
17 A. Yes, sir. And while I suspect Mr. Manning will be able to go into
18 greater detail, we know that particularly one grave was very close
19 because, as they were installing the mass grave, one of the houses near
20 the road had its water hook-up damaged by the backhoe. So it would be
21 close to the road and they had to come out later and actually try to fix
22 the water piping. So certainly one grave would be within 50 metres of the
23 road, perhaps even closer. Again, I would defer the details on that to
24 Mr. Manning when he testifies.
25 Q. Yes, just as you said, Mr. Butler. But we have just one question
1 which logically comes from that. Was it possible to pass that road --
2 along that road and not see the mass grave on the 14th or the 15th? Was
3 it possible to pass down that road without seeing that grave?
4 A. On the 14th, the -- certainly during the daylight hours, it would
5 be reasonable to conclude that you could see that. During the evening
6 hours, if the survivor accounts are accurate, the executions took place in
7 some cases under the lights of the engineer equipment and burial
8 operations continued until approximately 23 -- 2400 hours, almost. They
9 resumed again on the 15th, even though there were no more executions after
10 midnight, approximately, on the 14th. So, again my having driven down
11 there certainly on the lower meadow where you can clearly see from the
12 road, you would be able to see that. Whether on the upper meadow, which
13 is about 100 metres up a slope and off to the side a bit, I don't know the
14 answer to that.
15 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. I have a couple more questions in this
16 area. In your analysis of the Zvornik Brigade, did you notice any
17 elements of willfulness or willful facts by the senior officers, by the
18 units, or by the soldiers of the Zvornik Brigade? Do you have an examples
19 of such behaviour?
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection.
21 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
22 MR. McCLOSKEY: Vague and that's a legal term as well. I think
23 properly a specific question could be fine, but that's very vague and it's
24 a legal term and it puts the witness in a very awkward situation trying to
25 answer such a vague question.
1 JUDGE LIU: Well, us too. We are in a very awkward position to
2 understand your question.
3 You probably could rephrase your question, Mr. Stojanovic.
4 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I understand, Your Honours.
5 Q. Mr. Butler, in the military sense, was the Zvornik Brigade an
6 organised and disciplined military unit?
7 A. Yes, sir, I believe it was.
8 Q. Am I right when I say that that was the largest unit of the
9 Drina Corps?
10 A. I believe that is the case.
11 Q. Am I right when I say that two of the superior officers,
12 Pandurevic and Obrenovic, were young authoritative, very organised, and
13 very qualified and highly trained officers. They were ambitious and
14 perhaps this is one of the reasons why the Army of Republika Srpska
15 decided that this brigade should number so many men.
16 A. Let me break your question into two parts. First, with respect to
17 Pandurevic and Obrenovic, they were very young, they were very competent
18 officers. With respect to highly qualified and trained, within the
19 context of what they were doing they were competent and they were trained;
20 however, just to remember that when the war started, Pandurevic was a
21 captain first class and Obrenovic was a captain. So they were trained
22 formally up to that level. From December 1992 through the end of the war,
23 Obrenovic and Pandurevic, I believe, formed perhaps one of the most
24 effective partnerships with respect to a commander and chief of staff.
25 And I believe that with respect to their combat actions, they were
1 probably two of the most successful commanders of the war. And had it not
2 been for the criminal acts, I suspect that both of them would have found
3 themselves to this day senior leaders of the VRS. So within that respect,
4 I agree.
5 With respect to whether or not that is the reason why the Zvornik
6 Brigade was such a large formation with respect to numbers and units, I
7 don't know that I could draw that conclusion based off of their
8 professional competence. It may well just be because that was what the
9 municipality of Zvornik could put together with respect to forces.
10 Whether or not they were going to break it down into one or two brigades
11 if they so chose to is a decision that I don't know the answer to. I just
12 don't have any information with respect to that.
13 So while I agree with your first part, Mr. Stojanovic, I don't
14 know that the next part of your conclusion would be supported by just that
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. I want to continue with this. Did you
17 analyse the interpersonal relationships, and specifically the
18 relationships between Majors Obrenovic, Pandurevic, and Jokic, in this
20 A. I did not analyse the interpersonal relationships with the three
21 of them. My observations as to the command relationships and the success
22 of Pandurevic and Obrenovic as a commander and chief of staff are, again,
23 a basis of my reflection of reading their documents and knowing their war
24 history. Within the context of 1992 to 1995, the documents that I have
25 did not lend themselves to me being able to analyse, at least at the
1 interpersonal relationship level, where Major Jokic did or did not fit
2 into that programme, other than his professional competences.
3 Q. In view of everything that you have said so far about the
4 qualities of Obrenovic and Pandurevic, does it seem logical then that a
5 lower-ranking officer without the career that the two of them had and at
6 the time the duty operations officer would stop the chief of staff of the
7 brigade at the staircase with the words: Just one moment, Major, and in
8 such an address then gives him the information about the situation in the
9 brigade. Would this be contrary to what the rules require in a
10 relationship between the commander and the duty officer?
11 A. I'm not sure that in that particular context that you've described
12 that it's improper. Clearly Major Jokic, among a number of officers of
13 the Zvornik Brigade, fell into a category of officers who were former JNA
14 officers and because they were professional military officers were
15 certainly perceived to be more competent and higher trained than many of
16 the other officers. With respect to him being a duty officer, logically
17 as new information developing around a situation came to the awareness of
18 the duty officer, he is charged by position with ensuring that the
19 relevant commanders and other officers know that information and can act
20 on it.
21 So I'm not sure that I've answered all of your question - and if I
22 haven't, please rephrase it - but I don't think that it's an improper
23 relationship at all.
24 Q. Can we draw this to an end with the following question: Is it in
25 keeping with the rules and the discipline that existed in the command of
1 the Zvornik Brigade that the briefing between the duty officer and his
2 commander would take place in a different way, in a more formal way, at
3 the command post rather than in an informal way by one calling the other:
4 Just a moment Major. And this all happens on the staircase. Can you
5 please agree with me and tell me that it would be normal to expect that
6 such a thing would take place in a different way and a different place?
7 A. I agree, the proper setting for something of that nature should
8 have been the duty operations centre and not necessarily a staircase. So
9 in that respect, the practices or the practice specifically of briefing
10 someone in a staircase certainly isn't normal and there would be much more
11 appropriate settings to do that.
12 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. And please tell me: In the personnel
13 charts or elsewhere, did you notice that Major Jokic throughout all this
14 wartime was ever promoted or -- or when he was promoted, was it done in an
15 extraordinary way or was it done gradually, as one would expect for an
16 officer to be promoted, in a gradual way climbing the ladder?
17 A. I am aware that he started with the VRS at, I believe, the rank of
18 captain first class and in mid-1994 he was promoted to major. I have not
19 come across any documents which would indicate that that promotion was on
20 an extraordinary basis. So I assume that it was just in the normal course
21 of his career of progression that he was promoted.
22 Q. Precisely. So, Mr. Butler, his promotion followed a regular
23 procedure based on his term -- on his years of service and the fact is
24 that their relationship was a conflicting one.
25 We are moving on, but I would like to make a correction in the
1 transcript. A mistake was made two days ago and this is done on the
2 assistance of my client, Mr. Dragan Jokic. When we were talking about the
3 9th Battalion, it entered the transcript that on that occasion, that is on
4 the 14th July, in the morning the 9th Battalion was lined up before
5 leaving for Nisici and that it was Milenko Kajtaz who reported before that
6 line-up. It was not done by Milenko Kajtaz. But one of the officers of
7 this ad hoc unit which was formed at the time. So I would kindly ask for
8 this correction to be made in the transcript. So it was Milenko Kajtaz
9 who reported before the unit that was lined up on that day.
10 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, that appears to be offering evidence
12 from the -- information from Mr. Jokic into the record. It doesn't seem
13 like a huge point, but I'm not really sure what to make of that as a
14 practice. If Mr. Jokic is going to provide evidence, he should do it
15 under the Rules that allows him to make a statement or get up and testify
16 so we can cross-examine him. And unless Mr. Stojanovic mistakenly made
17 the name Kajtaz and he just wants to withdraw that. But that's not what I
18 believe is being said. It appears to be a suggestion that this is actual
19 evidence, and again we may have our -- our systems may be what's clashing
20 here, but I would just make those comments.
21 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, I think you have to identify the
22 situation where the mistake is made during that period. Because we don't
23 know whether it's your statement or the witness's statement on that issue.
24 So would you please give some explanations about that.
25 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. During the
1 cross that conducted about the 9th Battalion, I said -- I asked Mr. Butler
2 whether he was aware of the fact that Milenko Kajtaz was the officer who
3 reported before the lined-up unit. So I'm correcting my own mistake. It
4 was not officer Kajtaz. This is my mistake. It was another officer from
5 that battalion. So I'm not trying to do anything good or bad, I'm just
6 trying to correct my own mistake because of that particular gentleman. It
7 was not Milenko Kajtaz who reported on behalf of the unit.
8 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much for your explanation. Anyway,
9 we'll check the transcript of that day.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I'm
11 moving on to another area. I shall be very aware of the time that you
12 gave me.
13 Q. Mr. Butler, in your testimony you also analysed some exhibits
14 which were seized from the Zvornik Brigade. Amongst them you analysed
15 travel orders and work orders for particular vehicles and pieces of
16 equipment that belonged to the brigade. Is that correct?
17 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
18 Q. When we compared them with other pieces of evidence, do you
19 believe, Mr. Butler, that these documents are relevant and that they
20 reflect the actual situation when it came to the way these pieces of
21 equipment were used by the Zvornik Brigade?
22 A. Yes, sir, I do. Particularly with respect to the earth-moving
23 equipment because I also have the ability to corroborate that with some of
24 the fuel utilisation logs showing fuel going to the engineer company, as
25 well as on one particular case fuel being put into a BGH-700 loader. So I
1 believe that the utilisation logs for the vehicle can at least be
2 corroborated with the fuel utilisation logs of the Zvornik Brigade and
3 that they are in fact actual representations of the work done.
4 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. We shall take things in a certain order to
5 see whether this is all correct, because we believe that there are some
6 errors there. Can you please look at Exhibit P510. This is the logbook
7 for the vehicle Opel Rekord.
8 A. I do not believe that was one of the ones you had me pull on
9 Monday, so I don't have that with me.
10 MR. McCLOSKEY: We have that document if it's needed. I don't
11 believe it's an engineering document; I think it's a military police
13 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
14 This is the document you're referring to, sir?
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Yes, Mr. Butler. I would just like to confirm something with you.
17 This is a vehicle used by the military police. It's an Opel Rekord. You
18 said on the 13th of July it travelled 209 kilometres. You analysed this
19 and you said that amongst other places the vehicle went to the Standard
20 IKM Zvornik, Lokanj and then there is an entry: Standard, Bratunac,
21 Zvornik. Can you please tell us in your analysis, did you arrive at a
22 conclusion that this vehicle went to Bratunac at all, and if it did, at
23 what time did it go to Bratunac?
24 A. The log itself does not indicate at what time that vehicle went to
25 Bratunac. There are, I believe, two witness statements that indicate that
1 this vehicle did go sometime on the 13th, I'm just not sure whether -- I
2 believe it may be in the late afternoon hours. I believe that according
3 to at least one of the statements, this vehicle was used to escort the UN
4 convoy that had crossed over at Zvornik down to Bratunac and then it
5 returned. So I believe that if in fact this vehicle was used for that,
6 that that would be in the late afternoon hours of 13 July.
7 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. We shall continue to explore this. Now
8 can we look at P516. This is the logbook for the engineering vehicle Skip
10 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Stojanovic, could we have our break and then
11 come back to look at that document? Yes, we'll resume until 4.00.
12 --- Recess taken at 3.30 p.m.
13 --- On resuming at 4.00 p.m.
14 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stojanovic, please continue.
15 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. Before the break we started talking about P516 and the vehicle in
17 question is Skip Torpedo. According to the logbook you will agree with me
18 that this vehicle was in Orahovac, it was digging a trench in Orahovac.
19 Am I right in thinking that?
20 A. Yes, sir. That is what is listed on 14 July. Is that correct.
21 Q. On page 1 it says that the co-driver or two co-drivers were
22 Cvijetin Ristanovic and Milos Mitrovic?
23 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
24 Q. Do you agree that Cvijetin Ristanovic also conducted a machine
25 called BGH-700 and that on that same day he was also in Orahovac?
1 A. I don't know that from the document because we don't have a
2 utilisation log for the BGH-700, so I can't draw that conclusion.
3 Q. Shall we look at the statement given by Milos Mitrovic and see
4 what he has to say about that.
5 Can we ask the usher to help us with this Exhibit D46/3.
6 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, I object to using the statement --
7 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
8 MR. McCLOSKEY: In the manner stated by the witness just to see
9 what he says about it. A paraphrased question about Mr. Butler --
10 Mitrovic says he was or was not there, now did you fit this into your
11 analysis. But just to go through and again read something without it
12 being an impeachment or to refresh the recollection for a particular
13 purpose is not proper.
14 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Stojanovic, could you inform us what is the
15 purpose of using this statement? I understand you have to request a
16 question to this witness. If there is any difference, you may use certain
17 documents to rebut the statement of this witness. But first of all you
18 have to put your question first to this witness. Maybe the answer of this
19 witness will be agreeable to your case.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, at the beginning I
21 asked Mr. Butler whether he thought that these documents were relevant and
22 correct; Mr. Butler said yes. As a matter of principle, I can't say
23 definitely, but that these documents are not correct. I would just like
24 to confront the key players with what Mr. Butler said.
1 (redacted). It
2 seems to me that this is a good opportunity to confront Mr. Butler with
3 this witness statement in order to prove the relevance of this document
4 and what this witness is actually going to say, because we will not have
5 another opportunity to examine Mr. Butler. I just want to show him one
6 sentence. What I'm saying, Your Honour, is that according to what we
7 have - and I'm not talking about any tricks in my questions - this piece
8 of equipment did not work in Orahovac on the 14th of July. It was the
9 machine called BGH-70 [as interpreted] and the Skip torpedo wasn't there.
10 You already had the testimonies of the two survivors from Orahovac who
11 described those two machines, but I would like Mr. Butler to tell us
12 something about that. I'm not implying that the work log is either
13 correct or not correct. So this is my only thesis that I would like to
14 confront Mr. Butler with.
15 JUDGE LIU: One clarification is that BGH-70 or -700?
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, the name of the
17 equipment is BGH-700, BGH-700. And this piece of equipment was there on
18 the 14th.
19 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. You may proceed and we'll see how far you
20 can go.
21 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Q. Mr. Butler, can you please look at page 17, line 8 of the English
23 version. This is a witness, one of the two who were released from Snagovo
24 on the 14th and returned to the engineering company. The witness's name
25 is Milos Mitrovic. He is asked by the OTP official: "According to the
1 work log, it transpires that you were the driver of the Torpedo."
2 And Milos Mitrovic answered: "Yes, but I didn't go anywhere on
3 the 14th and the 15th.
4 "Q. According to the logbook, you went from the base to Orahovac
5 and back on the 14th to do some digging?
6 The answer: "No.
7 "Q. Would you like to look at this logbook?
8 "A. Yes, let me do that."
9 He is shown the logbook. And the witness says: "The Skip didn't
10 go to Orahovac on the 14th and the 15th. The only possibility I can see
11 here is that fuel was requested for this piece of equipment. There were
12 other pieces of equipment whose journey was not accompanied by the
14 The next question is: "We have the logbooks of all the other
15 vehicles that you have mentioned earlier today."
16 And the witness answers: "Yes, I know, but what I'm saying is the
17 truth. There are other witnesses who can prove whether I was in Orahovac
18 or not. I was not in Orahovac and this piece of equipment was not in
20 And now my question to you, sir: Mr. Butler, is it true what this
21 witness is saying or is the truth contained in the work log? What did you
22 learn in the course of your analysis?
23 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: Asking Mr. Butler just to testify about the truth
25 of a witness in this context is really not relevant. He can compare
1 documents and statements, but -- I wish all of us had the secret to the
2 truth, but that's not a relevant question.
3 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Stojanovic, you may rephrase your question
4 by asking Mr. Butler to make some comments on these kind of statements in
5 this document and you could point out that there are some conflicts
6 between this witness's testimony and what he said here. But whether it's
7 true or not is another question.
8 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Q. Mr. Butler, you have both situations in front of you. You are a
10 military expert, can you help us, please. According to your analysis,
11 what really happened with the Skip equipment? Was the thing that happened
12 something that is entered in the logbook or, on the contrary, was it what
13 this person had to say about it?
14 A. I believe in this respect that the annotations in the logbook -- I
15 see no reason for them not to be accurate. Trying to put -- trying to
16 just spin this around from the completely different version, if we were to
17 assume the witness statement in this respect is accurate, it raises the
18 question: Why if the vehicle wasn't there and if the vehicle wasn't in
19 use would somebody on 14 July note it that it was? Certainly this
20 particular document corresponds with the preponderance of information that
21 we've developed with respect to the engineer equipment and the fuel and
22 survivor statements. So, I mean certainly in this respect I believe that
23 the document is the most accurate reflection of the vehicle's use that
25 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. I believe that the question that you have
1 just raised was also raised by the investigator. The investigator
2 questioned the annotation in the logbook and the witness answered: This
3 was done to obtain fuel.
4 Secondly, the survivors that we heard today explained that there
5 were two pieces of equipment, one was the backhoe excavator and the other
6 was a backhoe loader; both were yellow pieces of equipment. However, I'm
7 going to accept your allegation that the witness did not say the truth and
8 that the document is correct. However, I believe that this piece of
9 equipment was not in Orahovac.
10 Can you please look at P517; this is the logbook for the vehicle
11 TAM 75.
12 A. If I can interject for one second as to your last comment, just to
13 be clear, I never made an allegation as to whether or not the witness said
14 the truth or not. I stand by the document insomuch as I believe that the
15 bulk of evidence that we have supports that. But I'm not raising a value
16 judgement one way or the other as to the truthfulness of a witness,
17 certainly one that will appear before this Trial Chamber, I believe.
18 Q. However, you will agree with me that the two are mutually
20 A. Certainly with respect to the document and this individual's
21 explanation, I agree.
22 Q. Then can you also agree with me that in the record of fuel that
23 was issued, the Skip Torpedo was not noted down but fuel was issued to
24 another vehicle?
25 A. In this particular document - and we're back on 516, Prosecution
1 Exhibit 516 - it indicates that 40 litres of fuel were designated for this
2 vehicle. I have no way of knowing if that fuel was diverted for any
3 reason. So I mean in that respect, I mean, the document says what it
4 says. It is consistent with the other information, and I -- again, unless
5 the argument is going to be that they're diverting the fuel for
6 blackmarket reasons or something else, I would be questioning why they
7 would be putting the fuel here on this vehicle and not actually putting it
8 into the vehicle.
9 Q. Very well. Could we now look at P517, Mr. Butler. Thank you, I'm
10 satisfied with your answer. In this exhibit, 517, the vehicle workbook
11 for the TAM 75 vehicle, according to the logbook the vehicle was operated
12 by Ostoja Stojanovic. Am I correct, Mr. Butler?
13 A. Yes, sir, that is the name of the individual listed.
14 Q. Also it states that this vehicle and this driver on the 14th of
15 July went -- it says here went several times from the base to Orahovac and
16 back to base on the 14th of July and that is how you also commented on
17 this particular document. Is that correct, Mr. Butler?
18 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
19 Q. Mr. Butler, could we now go back to our Exhibit 40 in order to
20 identify the statement by Ostoja Stojanovic. If you don't have a copy
21 here, I can provide you with a copy in English just so that we can cover
22 this document as quickly as possible.
23 So the statement of Ostoja Stojanovic, could the usher please give
24 the document to the witness. We used this exhibit, if you remember, when
25 we were talking about resubordination and also the Kravica warehouse.
1 Could you please look at page 6, line 15 to 17 in the English version.
2 The investigator tells the witness, who has been indicated in the vehicle
3 workbook as the driver and says: "Is it true that you drove a truck to
5 And the driver replies: "No, I didn't go to Orahovac with the
6 truck either. What truck is that? Does it say there what truck it is?"
7 The Prosecutor says: "It's TAM 75, licence plates M-5264." And
8 the -- replies: "That is not true that between the hours of 7.00 a.m. in
9 the morning and midnight you were driving for the army from the base to
10 Orahovac to the base to Orahovac, to the base to Orahovac" and so on.
11 The interviewee says: "No, no, that is not true. I did not drive
12 it." And he says that on page 7, line 7. He says he went to the civilian
13 protection in Zvornik and then later from the Bratunac Territorial Defence
14 to the Kravica warehouse.
19 (redacted). What does your investigation indicate, Mr. Butler?
20 A. Again, sir, in this respect, the document says what it says.
21 Certainly with respect to drivers, I hold open the possibility,
22 particularly with trucks or general-purpose vehicles of this nature, that
23 another individual may have driven the vehicle that day who wasn't the
24 listed driver. The normal practice would have been if that new individual
25 was driving the vehicle, as we've seen on a number of occasions, he will
1 handwrite his name as the operator.
2 That I believe, if we look at the B/C/S, you don't have that.
3 What you also have - and perhaps while I'm not sure how much of an
4 assistance it is - is on the B/C/S version you will have signatures of
5 various individuals. And I'm not in a position to be able to tell the
6 Trial Chamber whose signature it is on any given day, unfortunately. So I
7 certainly hold open the possibility that in this respect that the driver
8 may very well be different; however, with respect to drivers as opposed to
9 with respect to the actual utilisation of the vehicle, I would put that in
10 a different category.
11 The final note I would like to make on the issue of drivers is
12 that while I hold this possibility open for a standard vehicle driver,
13 such as the driver of a TAM 75, I would not necessarily hold that
14 possibility open for heavy equipment operators who require more
15 specialised knowledge of the vehicles. Presumably vehicles like that are
16 not vehicles that your average soldier can get in and operate without any
17 form of experience or training. Whereas, in a TAM 75, you can make that
18 inference that somebody else could.
19 Q. If I understood you correctly, Mr. Butler, you are giving us the
20 option that this vehicle work log may not reflect the truth or may not be
21 giving the correct driver's name. Is that possible?
22 A. Again, I noted that while the practice was that the driver would,
23 in fact, put down in handwritten form his name, I do hold open the
24 possibility that perhaps a particular driver didn't.
25 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. Could we now look at Exhibit P522, and
1 this is the work -- vehicle work log for ULT-220.
2 A. I don't believe I have that document, sir.
3 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could I please ask the usher to
4 give my copy in B/C/S to the witness.
5 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry, I -- thank you.
6 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Can we agree, Mr. Butler, with the fact that according to this
8 vehicle work log, ULT-220 belongs to the Birac Holding company?
9 A. Yes, sir. That is what it indicates in the -- or on the document.
10 Q. In the same document, it says that Veljko Kovacevic operated this
11 equipment. Is that correct?
12 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.
13 Q. I think that there is no need, but if you want we could perhaps
14 look at this together. Would you agree with me that according to the list
15 of the engineers' unit - and this is Exhibit P514 - the name of
16 Veljko Kovacevic is not mentioned in the list?
17 A. Yes, sir. I believe I have testified as such.
18 Q. Yes. I would just like you to confirm that this machine does not
19 belong to the engineers and is not on the list of the Zvornik Brigade
20 engineering equipment and that this soldier is not a member of the
21 Zvornik Brigade. So the machine operator and driver are not members of
22 the Zvornik Brigade. Is that correct?
23 A. That is correct. In this particular instance, the machine belongs
24 to a civilian construction firm. The driver is not listed as a member of
25 the engineer company. And the only reason why I suspect we would have a
1 vehicle log like this is for the accounting of the fuel that the army had
2 put in the vehicle when they requisitioned its use.
3 Q. Yes. Precisely, Mr. Butler. Thank you very much. I will not
4 insist on this any longer. We say that the ULT-220 does not belong to the
5 engineers' company and it's in the list in order to account for the fuel.
6 But another question: Who makes these vehicle work log books? And whose
7 signature is at the bottom of these pages? Who fills these sheets in and
8 does that have anything to do with the engineers' unit?
9 A. The actual issue on the sheets of accountability are done out of
10 an organ of the rear services department of the Zvornik Infantry Brigade.
11 What we found was that these records are compiled by the rear services
12 branch, and what we actually found when we went through the records was a
13 possibly 3- or 4-inch stack that was bound together of all the documents
14 were July 1995 which represent the vehicle work logs of the entire brigade
15 for that month. So these were not found separately, they were found in a
16 bundle with all of the vehicle logs for the Zvornik Infantry Brigade.
17 I believe that the process was that at the end of the month when
18 these sheets were turned in and new ones were issued -- or in some cases
19 when the sheet was filled in completely and the new one was issued in
20 mid-month, what happened afterward is it would be the rear services branch
21 function to audit this to ensure proper consumption of fuel, miles, and
22 things of that nature. So again, the purpose of these log sheets are
23 primarily for auditing after the fact in order to account for fuel, time,
24 and other variables that military organisations would have to track.
25 Q. So in that context, just one question: Am I right if I said that
1 the issuance of fuel and accounting for it was also something that the
2 rear services were responsible for and not the engineers' unit?
3 A. Yes, sir, that is correct. Fuel distribution and accountability
4 thereof is a rear services branch function, not an engineering branch
6 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. Can we now look at Exhibit P513; it's the
7 daily order of the commander of the engineers' unit for the 14th of July,
8 1995. Mr. Butler, I just wanted to clarify one thing. In your
9 examination-in-chief you spoke about this document and you said that it is
10 correct that in this daily order there are no instructions for the work of
11 the engineering machinery in Orahovac on the 14th. And if I recall
12 correctly, you interpreted that by the fact that the daily order was
13 written in the morning and it was not known that the machinery would be
14 used in Orahovac in the afternoon. Have I paraphrased you correctly?
15 A. It was not known by the people who wrote this orders book in the
16 morning; that is correct, sir; that is what I believe.
17 Q. Yes. That is exactly why I wanted to show you this document. Can
18 you conclude on the basis of this document that practically on the 14th in
19 the morning hours the engineering company did not know what would be
20 happening and whether their machinery would be required to be used?
21 A. Well, in this respect -- let's go back to what we talked about
22 earlier on qualifying the engineer company. At that time it was the
23 deputy and perhaps three or four people left it at the company
24 headquarters. The bulk of the people were either on operational
25 deployments, either outside of the Zvornik sector or, in the case of the
1 company commander and his group of 15 engineers, inside the Zvornik area.
2 Q. I received the translation that the deputy company commander left.
3 If I'm not mistaken, the commander went and the deputy commander was at
4 the command on the 14th. Am I correct in that, Mr. Butler?
5 A. Yes, sir. That is correct.
6 Q. Am I correct then that -- in saying that the engineering company
7 in the morning hours of the 14th had no plan about what their machinery
8 would be doing on the afternoon of the 14th?
9 A. Yes, sir. I believe that's the proper inference that can be
11 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. Just one more thing here. In the
12 introductory part of your report, which we titled Narrative About the
13 Military Events in Srebrenica, under item 7.78, I'm paraphrasing, you said
14 that the task of the rear services is to ensure the intake the security of
15 the military -- of the prisoners of war, so the rear services of the
16 Zvornik Brigade actually did not make any preparations to accept such a
17 number of prisoners of war. I'm paraphrasing you, so I hope that I did
18 this correctly. Did I paraphrase you correctly, Mr. Butler?
19 A. Yes, sir. In paragraph 7.78 of my narrative, I make the
20 observation that from the survivor accounts at the schools in the Zvornik
21 Brigade zone where Muslim prisoners were held, there was apparently no
22 provisions made for what I call life support for these individuals. There
23 was very little water, and only that water that was available at the
24 school itself. There was no food. Sanitation was limited, and there
25 was no noted medical support for the prisoners. Now, keeping that in
1 mind, and again reflecting back to the brigade rules, those are within the
2 purview of the Zvornik Brigade or any brigade's rear services branch to
3 make those things happen. Those are logistical functions.
4 Q. I'm interested precisely in that context. It's obvious that
5 nothing -- no preparations were made by the rear services of the Zvornik
6 Brigade. So can we draw the conclusion from that that the rear or the
7 rear units of the Zvornik Brigade practically had no information about the
8 arrival of such a number of prisoners of war to the area of responsibility
9 of the Zvornik Brigade on the 14th in the morning?
10 A. That is one interpretation. Certainly the other interpretation
11 would be that there was an awareness, and given the fact that everyone
12 within the brigade leadership knew that the prisoners were going to be
13 killed, there did not seem to be a reason why you would provide these. As
14 I noted in my paragraph 7.78, there were select food deliveries that we
15 know were made to the military police at Orahovac. When you examine the
16 accounts of the crime scenes from some of the survivors where they talk
17 about a process where their hands were bound with ligatures or wire that
18 came from certain locations that the investigation has worked on - I don't
19 know all the mechanics of those - certainly some logistical provisions to
20 at least facilitate the execution and burial process were being made.
21 So while I do hold open the possibility that you have suggested,
22 that it was because they were unaware of the numbers of the prisoners that
23 were coming in, I believe that in the face of the majority of the evidence
24 that the most reasonable conclusion is that there was an awareness of the
25 numbers of the prisoners and there was just no effort made because
1 everyone knew within the senior leadership of the brigade that these
2 people were going to be executed.
3 Q. Mr. Butler, do you have any arguments or any document which would
4 indicate that information came from Obrenovic about what would happen,
5 that this information came to Milosevic as his assistant for logistics.
6 Or is this something that is still in the sphere of an assumption?
7 A. No, sir. I have no documents that would reflect that Obrenovic
8 informed Major Milosevic or Captain Milosevic, I believe, with respect to
9 that particular issue. The only document that we have within that time
10 frame is the 15 July interim combat report where Colonel Pandurevic notes
11 the presence of prisoners in the schools.
12 Q. Yes. This is what I actually wanted to talk about, Mr. Butler.
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Could the usher please show the
14 witness Exhibit D51 in which we used the term "secret command of troops,"
15 because we also think the same as you do. There is no public document
16 about that.
17 Q. Could we please look at this term "secret command or commanding of
18 troops," which implies the clandestine relay of orders, combat
19 commandments and reports in the course of interaction between higher and
20 lower commands. And then it goes on to say how this has effected the use
21 of coded card, coded conversation, manual secret names of commands and so
22 on and so forth.
23 Would you agree with me, Mr. Butler, that this, I would say,
24 significant movement and crime of such a scale would not be something that
25 would be conveyed through the usual channels of issuing orders but would
1 more likely be done through the secret chain of command, the way it was
2 described in the military lexicon.
3 MR. McCLOSKEY: I object to the form of that question. There's
4 no -- it misstates the facts. There's no discussion of a secret chain of
5 command in the military lexicon.
6 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
7 Mr. Stojanovic, I think you have to establish that the secret
8 commanding of troops existed in that particular unit. Then you may ask
9 this question to this witness, or you may first ask this witness whether
10 he's familiar with this term or not. Then begin your questions on more
11 substantive matters.
12 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. Mr. Butler, are you familiar in military terminology with the
14 concept of secret command, and did you encounter such a term in all of the
15 events relating to the Srebrenica operation?
16 A. The term of art as I understand it from this particular document
17 or lexicon is with respect to the ability to pass orders in such a manner
18 to ensure the secrecy of those orders is maintained. In some particular
19 cases, we see manifestations of that with respect to particularly the
20 intercepts, where subscribers on those intercepts indicate that there are
21 things that are being talked about on those lines that should not be
22 talked about. So that, I believe, is one aspect of this particular
24 The other relaying of orders in this context, I believe that a
25 number of witnesses have testified that -- or at least certainly one that
1 I'm aware of has testified that he physically went himself to relay orders
2 with respect to the movements of prisoners rather than risk putting that
3 information out over a means that could be intercepted. And certainly
4 with that respect, by doing that you certainly do narrow down the circle
5 of people who might potentially know, either by design or communications
6 clerks or other individuals who because of their duty the message would be
7 passed through them to the recipient. So in that respect I do believe
8 that we have seen manifestations of that clandestine way of passing
10 Q. Yes, Mr. Butler. This is exactly what I wanted to hear from you.
11 I want you to make an inference and agree with me that this operation did
12 imply a certain degree of secrecy, at least during its first stages, and
13 that this information was kept within an inner circle of officers who were
14 in charge of carrying out the operation.
15 A. With respect to the movement of the Muslim prisoners from the
16 Bratunac area to Zvornik, I believe that as the evidence has been laid out
17 it does indicate that initially it was a very small circle of officers.
18 However, I also believe that as you look at how it unfolds over time, what
19 you start seeing, almost on an exponential basis, is that as other parties
20 become involved in the process, you have a rapidly growing issue of
21 awareness of at least parts of what is going on. So in that respect, I
22 agree; initially it was a very small circle, but it was not very long that
23 given the volume of prisoners that were coming in and the varied up to
24 five locations that they were being stored at, it rapidly became an issue
25 that a lot of the members of the brigade became aware of, both at the
1 headquarters and at the battalions where these facilities were located and
2 whose troops were in some respects expected to guard them.
3 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. Just for the record, I would like to
4 repeat that this is D51, however this is D58. That's how we have
5 identified this exhibit.
6 Thank you. Let's now look at one part of what you have already
7 talked about when questioned by Mr. Karnavas. The transcript is dated the
8 18th of November. Let's comment on some parts of this particular part of
9 your cross-examination.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I would kindly ask the usher to
11 help us to present the relevant part of the transcript. We have
12 identified it as D51/3.
13 Q. Mr. Butler, this is the cross-examination which took place on the
14 18th of November. I'm going to read the relevant parts of the transcript.
15 Mr. Karnavas asked you: "After the sweep operation, one would
16 expect if there has been battle in that area that there would be also
18 Your answer is: "Generally once the area is secured that would be
19 an expectation, yes.
20 "Q. Those two functions which go hand in glove after an operation
21 are proper military functions?"
22 Your answer was: "Yes, sir, they are."
23 Do you remember this part of the cross-examination, Mr. Butler?
24 A. Yes, sir, I do.
25 Q. My question to you is as follows: When you say "asanacija," and
1 this term is very often mentioned in the documents of the main corps and
2 the Drina Corps and in the command of the Zvornik Brigade, is it mentioned
3 often, this term?
4 A. I believe there are two references to this specific term. One of
5 them is the 15 July interim combat report by Colonel Pandurevic, and the
6 other one is a notation in the Bratunac Brigade command meetings logbook
7 on, I believe it's either late September or early October, where Captain
8 First Class Momir Nikolic uses that phrase with respect to a task from the
9 Main Staff. I don't believe that I have seen it in other documents with
10 respect to what we're talking about with Srebrenica; however, I have seen
11 the term used in other documents within the context of the larger war
12 where it's used as well. So I hope I've answered the question on that
14 Q. Yes, you have indeed, Mr. Butler. Although I have prepared an
15 exhibit, P539, which is an order of the Main Staff, and it's item 5. It
16 calls for the asanacija of the entire battlefield and the terrain in the
17 Zvornik region, however your answer was sufficient enough. Within the
18 system who is in charge of asanacija. Can you please answer that.
19 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, a reference has been made to a
21 document, an exhibit. If such references are going to be made, I think it
22 appropriate that that document be shown to the witness or at least
23 provided to the parties, especially when content is mentioned in it.
24 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
25 And, Mr. Stojanovic, I think your question is too general. You
1 have to ask a specific question concerning the testimony of this witness
2 or concerning with the specific document.
3 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. Then I
4 would kindly ask the usher to help us with Exhibit P539. I believe that
5 my learned friends from the OTP have it. I have it in B/C/S. This is an
6 order of the Main Staff dated 17 July 1995, and the term asanacija is
7 mentioned under item 5. Mr. Butler, will you agree with me on that.
8 A. Yes, sir, that is correct. I had forgotten about this one.
9 Q. I didn't want to insist on that. I have to bear the time in
10 question, so I have to reduce my questions a little. However, when we
11 were searching through all the documents, we came across this order, but I
12 used it because of the intervention by Mr. McCloskey.
13 My question now is: According to the rules in effect in
14 Republika Srpska, who is in charge of carrying out asanacija in the
15 battlefield area?
16 A. The -- in that context, there's two answers. With respect to the
17 rules generally, it is a rear services function because that is where the
18 medical branch lies within. Within the general practice of the Republika
19 Srpska, what we tend to see is that mixed military and civilian
20 commissions will be established under the auspice of either the army or
21 civil protection in order to accomplish a specific task of removing bodies
22 from a battlefield area. So within the context of the Republika Srpska,
23 there is significant involvement with respect to the municipal authorities
24 and the civil protection people.
25 Q. Are you aware of the fact that there was a specialised unit of the
1 civilian protection that was a unit for asanacija which was in charge of
2 these specific tasks?
3 A. Are we talking specifically July of 1995 and Zvornik, sir?
4 Q. Yes, Mr. Butler. I'm interested in July 1995 in the Zvornik area.
5 A. No, sir, I'm not aware that a specific unit existed with that
7 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I would kindly ask the usher to
8 put Exhibit D50 in front of the witness. This is a decree on the
9 organisation and functioning of the civilian protection.
10 Q. We had Article 27 of this decree translated. And, Mr. Butler, can
11 we have your brief comment on this article. According to the regulations
12 in effect in Republika Srpska on the organising and functioning of
13 civilian protection, Article 27 prescribes the organisation of specialised
14 units of civil protection. Under item 8 here you can see a specialised
15 unit for asanacija. I appreciate that you have not dwelled much upon the
16 issue of civil protection, so I'm not insisting on your broad knowledge on
17 that. However, if this is regulated by a rule, was it then to be expected
18 from the civilian protection in Zvornik to also have a specialised unit
19 for asanacija in view of the fact that this was prescribed by law?
20 A. Well, certainly it says - and again hopefully it's not just an
21 issue of translation - it says may be organised, not will. With respect
22 to Zvornik specifically, there was a large effort for asanacija as a
23 result of large numbers of bodies which were known to be in and around the
24 Zvornik municipality in 1992 in the latter months as a result of the
25 combat. Again, I don't know of a specific unit organised for asanacija in
1 July of 1995 in the Zvornik municipality. It may be there. I don't know
2 about it or it may just be another general function of the civilian
4 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. We shall go on to prove that this unit did
5 indeed exist. I believe that we have received a document from the OTP
6 proving that there was such a unit and their structure is explained. What
7 I would like to say here that the asanacija, that is the burial of bodies
8 is not a crime and it is a legal and legitimate military operation and
9 activity. I am talking within a military context, not about the legal
10 inferences of that.
11 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection. There was a mention again of a
13 document and an argument to prove something related to civil protection
14 and asanacija which Mr. Butler has been cross-examined on. If -- when
15 counsel does this, I think it's incumbent upon him to let Mr. Butler
16 review the document and explain, because this is cross-examination, this
17 is the subject he's crossing him on. Just mentioning this document and
18 saying we're going to go on is not proper. Again, a statement regarding
19 whether asanacija in the context of our case is legal or not is really not
21 JUDGE LIU: Yes. I agree with you.
22 Mr. Stojanovic, do you have that document? You mean that you
23 have a document received from the OTP providing that there was such a
24 unit and their structure is explained. What's that document?
25 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I don't have it on
1 me today; that's why I did not insist on it. However, we shall have an
2 opportunity to explore it. This is a document that we received from the
3 OTP indicating the structure of all of these units which were established
4 pursuant to the -- to Article 27 of the legal act on the organising and
5 functioning of civilian protection. This document indicates the
6 structure, the number of members in the unit, and the command structure of
7 that unit. However, I haven't got that document on me today, so I could
8 not refer to it today. I have just received it, actually, however it
9 hasn't been translated. So we will have to prepare this document for some
10 other examination. It wouldn't be correct of me to continue questioning
11 this witness on a document that hasn't been translated.
12 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
13 MR. McCLOSKEY: This again brings up a very serious issue, Your
14 Honour. Cross-examining on what I think are important subjects, I know
15 both for Mr. Blagojevic and for Mr. Stojanovic. Bringing up things like
16 this, leaving them hang, and not giving Mr. Butler a chance to discuss
17 them. Mr. Butler will be available in the future, and it looks like we're
18 going to have to call him back. But this is even more of a serious issue
19 with Mr. Obrenovic who has been cross-examined through Mr. Butler on items
20 that were not brought up to him or shown to him, most recently the
21 suggestion that the duty officer of the barracks was his best man. And
22 this may be, again, just this context of the common law system at work.
23 And I know Mr. Stojanovic is doing his best and I think he's doing an
24 excellent job, but this is a problem, especially in the context of
25 Mr. Obrenovic, whose credibility has been challenged on material he has
1 not been allowed to respond to. And Mr. Obrenovic is going to be
2 sentenced partly based on his credibility, and I'm not exactly sure what
3 to do at this point. But I did want to bring up that issue, and I know
4 Mr. Stojanovic is aware of it and is doing his best.
5 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Karnavas. I hope you will be very concise.
6 MR. KARNAVAS: Very concise, Your Honour. First of all, this
7 technique was used by the Prosecution in their direct throughout, number
8 one, where the gentleman was referring, there are documents, there are
9 rules, and that's why a couple of times I intervened and we never really
10 got from the Prosecution the documents and the rules they were referring
12 Secondly, Mr. Stojanovic had a good-faith basis for making that
13 remark. In front of a jury, obviously, it would be rather improper to do
14 so. But we do have professional Judges, he does have a document, and I
15 believe he's making a good-faith basis. So based on that, albeit, he
16 shouldn't be commenting, I don't think there's anything improper of the
17 way he's going about cross-examination, particularly in light of the rules
18 we have here. I don't want to interfere with Mr. Stojanovic's cross, I do
19 want to say, however, as long as he has a good-faith basis and as long as
20 some time down the road he is going to be introducing witnesses with
21 respect to this document it is perfectly proper.
22 JUDGE LIU: Mr. McCloskey.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: Mr. Stojanovic and Mr. Karnavas knows I'm not
24 suggesting Mr. Stojanovic is doing anything deliberately improper. I
25 don't think that's an issue at all. However, to bring up a document that
1 perhaps cuts against Mr. Butler's testimony or calls doubt on whether or
2 not he sufficiently researched an issue, which comments have been made in
3 the questioning, knowing Mr. Butler is going to be through testifying in a
4 couple of hours and not giving Mr. Butler a chance to respond is improper.
5 It doesn't help us get to the truth and it unfairly -- is an unfair
6 technique of cross-examination on Mr. Butler. And I -- again, I don't
7 think there's anything deliberate here, but it's just the way it's turned
8 out. And I know Mr. Stojanovic has the document and I'm sure he'll tell
9 us what it is. But we don't have any of these Defence documents now.
10 These are the first time we're seeing the Defence documents. So that is
11 an additional problem.
12 JUDGE LIU: Well, taking into consideration of the time of your
13 cross-examination, I don't think we should further pursue this issue
14 anymore. And this Trial Chamber will attach very little weight to this
15 section of the testimony unless in the future, Mr. Stojanovic, you have
16 the opportunity to provide the witness with that statement or this
17 document and unless you have another opportunity to clear it up in the
19 You may move on, Mr. Stojanovic.
20 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I am
21 sorry about the time, but I am giving up on insisting whether -- insisting
22 on that at the moment. We shall see in the future whether Zvornik had
23 such a unit of civilian protection or not. But now if you can help me and
24 tell me how much more do I have in order to bring my cross-examination to
25 an end?
1 JUDGE LIU: Well, five minutes.
2 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
3 Q. Mr. Butler, just a few questions about mobilisation. I would like
4 to remind you that on the 14th of November - I don't want to show you the
5 transcript - you said that when you say "mobilisation" you mean the
6 engineers, Jokic, Milosevic, the Ministry of Defence. Are you able to
7 remember that or do I need to show you that excerpt from the transcript?
8 A. I -- on the 14th of November -- I'd have to see that because I'm
9 just not catching the context. I think I know what you're talking about
10 with respect to the requisitioning of civil equipment by the military. I
11 mean, I think that's the context we're discussing.
12 Q. Yes, precisely.
13 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Can I ask the usher, please, to
14 show the 60/3 to Mr. Butler, pages 4559.
15 Q. Page 4559. Within that context, I wanted to ask you the
16 following: Within the procedure of requisitioning equipment, at any point
17 in time in the formal sense does this require a document by the chief of
18 engineers and is there any such document? Have you come across any such
20 A. With respect to the events of July of 1995, I have not come across
21 a document which represents a formal request from the chief of engineers
22 to the assistant commander rear services for the requisition of a civilian
23 piece of engineering equipment. Whether in any other time that has
24 occurred, that is not an area I have looked at in great detail, so I don't
25 have an answer to that. But certainly in July 1995, I do not have an
1 engineering document which reflects that.
2 Q. Will you agree with me that the title of the assistant commander
3 for personnel, organisation, and mobilisation indicates that this is the
4 duty of a personnel officer and he is the one who addresses higher
5 instances when a requisitioning of equipment is required?
6 A. I don't believe that's accurate. With respect to personnel, he
7 would be the one who does that. However, with respect to equipment - and
8 I have seen some documents where they are going out to the civilian
9 economy - it comes out of rear services and not the personnel or
10 mobilisation. So with respect to equipment, I don't believe that that's
11 an accurate statement.
12 Q. But am I right when I say that in order to mobilise soldiers, so
13 conscripts, this is something that is done through the personnel service,
14 while the requisitioning of machinery and equipment is done through the
15 rear services. Would that be correct, Mr. Butler?
16 A. Yes, sir, I agree.
17 Q. Would you agree with me that Mihajlo Galic, deputy commander for
18 personnel affairs, that was his duty, and he was the person who was in
19 charge of such tasks?
20 A. With respect to personnel, that is correct. That is his duty.
21 Although, I don't think it's deputy commander. I believe it's considered
22 deputy chief of staff for personnel affairs.
23 Q. I will just remind you that in the workbook of the officer on duty
24 states for Galic to mobilise everybody. If you recall this was on the
25 14th or the 15th. It was at the time that Dragan Jokic was duty officer.
1 So does that indicate to you that Galic was the one who was supposed to
2 carry out the mobilisation within the defence ministry?
3 A. I would agree and then I would also remind you that as you noted
4 earlier, this same officer was at the IKM at that period and presumably
5 would not be able to accomplish that mobilisation function.
6 Q. Would you agree with me that perhaps on the 15th or on the 14th
7 and the 15th he did come to the command of the Zvornik Brigade, because,
8 to say the least, that was the task of the highest priority at that point
9 in time?
10 A. I would have to go back to the IKM logbook and it would indicate
11 in that logbook at what point he got relieved. Again, that is something I
12 could check. I don't know whether it was on the 14th or 15th or whether
13 it was longer.
14 Q. Thank you. Let's finish, then, with the elements indicating the
15 character of Dragan Jokic and then I plan to close with that.
16 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] I would like to ask the usher to
17 give us a document, D52.
18 Q. Mr. Butler, did you have the opportunity earlier to see this
20 A. Yes, sir. And I guess what I'm surprised is that we've already
21 had this translated into English. I don't know why you guys have
22 translated it yourself, but I have seen this document.
23 Q. Would you agree with me that we have the following situation here:
24 That a group of prisoners, Muslim prisoners, from the Pilica school
25 managed to escape on the 14th and that it was wandering in the area of
1 responsibility of the Zvornik Brigade and that they found themselves with
2 this son and father Nesko Djokic. He tried to help them. He gave them
3 food and tried to transfer them to an area under the control of the BiH
4 army. That he was caught in that and prevented from doing so, and that
5 the officers of the Zvornik Brigade reported him as a person who was
6 cooperating with enemy -- with the enemy army. Am I correct when I say
7 that, Mr. Butler?
8 A. I believe partially. It is my assessment with respect to this and
9 the information the investigation has developed that the individuals, in
10 fact, did not escape from the Pilica school on the 14th but we are
11 individuals who survived at Branjevo Military Farm and from that location
12 attempted to make their way out of the territory of the Zvornik Brigade
13 towards the BH territory. I believe I discussed this issue in my
14 narrative, where I lay out the information which supports that. But as to
15 the greater context, yeah, the situation that you have here is where these
16 two individuals were reported to the command of the Zvornik Brigade for
17 essentially aiding enemy soldiers.
18 Q. Mr. Butler, in the course of your investigation and after you read
19 Obrenovic's statement, did you have access or gain information that
20 Dragan Jokic on the 18th of July personally demined a minefield and led
21 five to six Muslim young men to go to the Muslim federation, and according
22 to Obrenovic the commander of a unit of the BiH Semso Muminovic thanked
23 them for this consideration which was extended to these young men?
24 A. I believe an account is found in Colonel Obrenovic's first
25 statement to the OTP, either his first or second. I'm not exactly sure
1 which one. But I am familiar with that general account, yes, sir.
2 Q. Would you agree with me that such an act at that point in time
3 when all of that was considered to be cooperation with the enemy, this was
4 an act of personal courage, doing something like that, demining a
5 minefield and enabling these young men, perhaps even children, to cross
6 into the area under the control of the BiH army?
7 A. In one respect, given the lack of proper record-keeping of the
8 minefields, anyone going in and trying to remove or demine certain areas,
9 that's a personal act of courage, regardless of their motivation. With
10 respect to Dragan Jokic, again I have no way of knowing whether this was
11 an individual act or an act on orders from the superior. So I really
12 don't believe that I can appropriately comment one way or the other.
13 Q. But you agree with me that it was proof of a courageous personal
14 act at that point in time to allow a group of five to six young men to
15 pass through?
16 A. Again, sir, I mean not knowing whether it was on orders from a
17 superior or whether it was of his own individual initiative, I don't know
18 that I can comment one way or the other on that. I just don't know the
20 Q. Mr. Butler, are you familiar with the role of Dragan Jokic in the
21 implementation of the Dayton Agreement and are you aware of the
22 recognition he received from the army of the United States, Russia, the
23 BiH army and so on after the signing of the Dayton Agreement?
24 A. No, sir, I'm not.
25 Q. Are you aware that the American army offered Major Jokic,
1 precisely because his accomplishments in the implementation of the Dayton
2 Accords and demining to receive an honourary rank and work for the
3 American army?
4 A. No, sir, I'm not.
5 Q. Mr. Butler, do you have or did you have access at any point to a
6 document which could link Jokic's name with the reburial operation. So
7 I'm not talking about testimonies, I'm talking about documents.
8 A. No, sir. There is no specific document that does that.
9 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler.
10 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] And now just Exhibit D59. Could
11 the usher please show this to the witness, and then I will be completing
12 my cross-examination with that, Your Honours.
13 Your Honours, this is an article in the respected BiH newspaper,
14 Slobodna Bosna. We have provided a translation. The article is dated
15 11th of October, 2001, and it was written by journalist Emir Hodzic.
16 Because we are short of time, I would like to read out the last passage,
17 that last paragraph which we underlined which is relevant. And we would
18 like to put that to Mr. Butler.
19 Q. So in this final part, the public and the journalist from this
20 newspaper says: "The only certain thing is that none of those responsible
21 for this crime was ever responsible besides Colonel Obrenovic, who was the
22 chief of staff and who is charged with the crimes, and Dragan Jokic from
23 Zvornik, no one has ended up in The Hague so far."
24 And the sentence that we would like to specifically point out.
25 "The inhabitants of Podrinje, Drina valley, had on several
1 occasions tried to suggest to the investigators that the transfer of
2 Dragan Jokic was a particular farce and spitting on Bosnian bones, because
3 Jokic was an unimportant military person in the chain of command and
4 direction, while tens of individuals responsible for ordering and carrying
5 out the murders of civilians are still at liberty."
6 Mr. Butler, would you agree with what the public of Bosnia and
7 Herzegovina has said regarding Dragan Jokic?
8 A. I certainly would agree with the fact that tens, and perhaps
9 hundreds, of individuals with respect to this are still at liberty, some
10 indicted and some not. I don't believe that his role is unimportant. He
11 is a part of a process. And in retrospect, it really doesn't matter what
12 I believe in this regard. He was, in fact, indicted and he is, in fact,
13 standing trial. His ultimate responsibility and importance I believe is
14 an issue for the Bench and not a judgement for myself, sir.
15 Q. Thank you, Mr. Butler. And to finish with this, are you familiar
16 with the fact that Dragan Jokic is the first active officer of the Army of
17 Republika Srpska who voluntarily surrendered to this Tribunal?
18 A. Yes, sir, I am aware of that fact.
19 Q. Are you aware of the fact, Mr. Butler, that until today he's the
20 only officer of the VRS who has voluntarily responded to the summons by
21 this Tribunal and who has come and surrendered to the Tribunal?
22 A. Yes, sir, I agree. To my knowledge, he is the only VRS officer
23 who has voluntarily surrendered.
24 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I am -- I would
25 like to conclude my cross-examination. Thank you very much. If I
1 repeated myself in some places, I would just like you to keep in mind that
2 I come from a different legal tradition with a different type of
3 examination. So please take that into account.
4 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. I think it's time for a break.
5 We'll make a 20 minutes' break and we'll resume at 10 minutes to 6.00.
6 --- Recess taken at 5.30 p.m.
7 --- On resuming at 5.50 p.m.
8 JUDGE LIU: Mr. McCloskey, your re-examination, please.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President. If I could briefly show
10 Mr. Butler an exhibit, 248.
11 Re-examined by Mr. McCloskey:
12 Q. This is an intercept dated 16 July at 1048 hours. If you could
13 take a look at that, Mr. Butler. It talks about Kravica. It's the
14 restoration of the terrain, the word asanacija has been used there. It
15 hasn't been done. I've just, by nothing must be found on the road, not
16 even a shred of cloth. Had the civilian protection rally engaged the
17 units over there which have work obligations, et cetera. They must be
18 cleared by 1300 hours. In fact, by 1500 hours today.
19 Y says: "Okay, I'll pass it on.
20 X says: "In the surrounding are everything must be done. They've
21 just this minute come to me from higher command and asked me to do that.
22 "Okay, understood. I'll pass it on."
23 From this brief intercept, do you have an opinion regarding
24 whether this is a military or civilian people involved in this intercept
25 actually speaking on it, I mean?
1 A. It's tough to say. The phrase "higher command" implies military
2 as opposed to what they might say if it was the civilian leadership. But
3 I don't believe it's real clear.
4 Q. Could this be the MUP or the civilian protection organisation?
5 A. That is a possibility, sir, yes.
6 Q. Okay. Let me go on to another subject. On the 12th and 13th of
7 July, in your opinion were Potocari and the town of Bratunac in the
8 Bratunac Brigade's zones of responsibility?
9 A. Yes, sir.
10 Q. Okay. For the 12th and 13th of July, in your opinion were the 2nd
11 and 3rd Infantry Battalions or the elements of them that have been
12 identified in Potocari taken away from the command of Vidoje Blagojevic in
13 any way?
14 A. No, sir. I have no evidence that suggests that. I believe that
15 they're still under his command.
16 Q. In your opinion, were the elements of the Bratunac Brigade MPs on
17 the 12th and 13th of July in Potocari taken away from or hijacked in some
18 manner from the command of Vidoje Blagojevic?
19 A. No, sir. The fact that Captain First Class Momir Nikolic is
20 working on controlling their activities is a function of the command of
21 Blagojevic, not an isolation of it.
22 Q. In your opinion, did Vidoje Blagojevic have any responsibility in
23 the sense of military responsibility to the able-bodied Muslim men
24 separated in Potocari and detained also in Bratunac, including the men
25 that were put there from along the road?
1 A. As the relevant brigade commander, I believe that he did have a
2 military responsibility with respect to their -- not only guarding them,
3 as he should be doing, but also to their proper treatment, medical
4 treatment, and other aspects of prisoners of war.
5 Q. Do you believe that Momir Nikolic was removed from the command
6 responsibility of Vidoje Blagojevic in some way in July of 1995?
7 A. No, sir, I don't.
8 Q. Do you recall from your review of the investigation the incident
9 of a survivor of the Jadar River?
10 A. Yes, sir.
11 Q. Can you -- very briefly, I don't want to take more than about five
12 more minutes, if I can, can you tell us what you recall about the specific
13 facts of that case and whether or not there are any elements of possible
14 organisation from a higher command involved in it.
15 MR. KARNAVAS: Your Honour.
16 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
17 MR. KARNAVAS: At this point I would like the Prosecutor to name
18 who this witness is, give a code or whatever, and whether this witness
19 will be testifying, because now we're having Mr. Butler trying to sum up
20 what this particular individual might have said.
21 JUDGE LIU: Yes, if possible.
22 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm surprised, Your Honour. This man is in
23 evidence under 92 bis. He's the one Jadar River survivor. He is part of
24 the indictment. I tried -- I don't remember his name at the moment, but I
25 can come up with it. He's in the evidence already. He has been accepted
1 as 92 bis. It's a very distinctive story and I can -- Witness P175. I do
2 have his name if we want to go into private session.
3 JUDGE LIU: I don't think so. You may proceed -- yes,
4 Mr. Karnavas.
5 MR. KARNAVAS: My only concern, Your Honour, at this point, now
6 that I know who he's talking about -- my concern is why do we have
7 Mr. Butler commenting about the individual's statement? If he wants to --
8 you know, perhaps the question, I think, should be rephrased so we know
9 exactly what it is that he's asking Mr. Butler to speak about. I'm
10 assuming that there has been no contact, and so from the question that is
11 being posed, I don't see how Mr. Butler can answer the question.
12 JUDGE LIU: Well, I think Mr. McCloskey has asked about the
13 elements of the organisation from the higher commander involved in it.
14 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. It was brought up regarding the Cerska
15 Valley, Your Honour, so I was just bringing it up which I think from
16 this -- well, the relevance should become clear or lack thereof.
17 JUDGE LIU: Yes, you may proceed.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY:
19 Q. Can you just give us briefly what you recall about what that
20 witness as now part of this trial record has said and just the briefest
22 A. With respect, he indicates notwithstanding the issues to his
23 capture that any point in time just before or at noon on 13 July, him and
24 a group of other people who were being held at Konjevic Polje are put on a
25 bus, driven to a location at the Jadar River. They are taken off the bus
1 and then they are subsequently executed at that location, with the
2 exception, of course, of that individual. The indication that I have with
3 respect to organisation is the fact that at a point in time where the
4 buses were being used primarily to move the Bosnian Muslims out of
5 Potocari, starting at that point and then going further to Cerska and then
6 even further in time on the 13th where you start seeing buses starting to
7 now load up with Bosnian Muslim men along Sandici, for me that's a point
8 where we start seeing the transition from the buses just carrying Bosnian
9 Muslims from Potocari and are now starting to be directed to start loading
10 Bosnian Muslim males who are being captured from the column and now are
11 starting to be used directly with respect to the prisoners of war.
12 Q. Mr. Butler, in your research did you have any indication that the
13 VRS investigated abuses of Muslim men from Srebrenica under the military
14 rules that you have already gone over in detail?
15 A. No, sir. The reports from the relevant military Prosecutor's
16 offices and the military court systems have no data that suggests that the
17 VRS began any form of investigations with respect to any of these abuses.
18 I understand that the investigation has talked to a number of the
19 Prosecutors and Judges, and they have confirmed what the records indicate,
20 that there were no cases where this was done.
21 Q. Have you, in that same review, found any indication that any VRS
22 or MUP for that matter troops have been punished in any way for abusing
23 the Muslims from Srebrenica in 1995?
24 A. No, sir. I found nothing to that effect.
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Mr. President, given the time constraints we're
1 under, I don't need to ask any more questions. I would rather turn it
2 over to the Court.
3 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
4 Any questions from Judges?
5 Judge Vassylenko, please.
6 Questioned by the Court:
7 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Mr. Butler, to the extent you can tell us:
8 Where did you work and what positions did you hold during the time of the
9 war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and particularly during the critical time
10 relevant for this case.
11 A. With respect to my background during the war in Bosnia, I left my
12 European assignment in August of 1992. I was then assigned to a unit in
13 the United States, United States 3rd Army. Its geographic area of
14 responsibility was south-west Asia and the Middle East. And from August
15 1992 through my being assigned here in April of 1997, my geographic focus
16 was south-west Asia and the Middle East. Specifically in July of 1995 I
17 was rather active during that period doing shift work, because the July
18 and August 1995 time frame generally corresponded with the height of the
19 summer training summer of the Iraqi army, and they had a rather annoying
20 tendency to practice rather close to the Kuwaiti boarder. Given my job
21 responsibility at the time, it was something that I had to keep great
22 track of.
23 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Thank you. Mr. Butler, do you know the meaning
24 of the word "Krivaja"?
25 A. Krivaja is a small creek or stream that actually runs through an
1 area of the Zvornik municipality in part and I think also the Birac
2 municipality. That's the only connotation I know of it.
3 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: So the operation was named Krivaja 95 due to
4 the name of this small creek, yes.
5 A. I assume that was the case. I don't believe there's another
6 meaning associated with it, sir.
7 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Mr. Butler, during your testimony and during
8 the testimony of other witnesses, very often such terms as deputy
9 commander and assistant commander were used as interchangeable.
10 A. They should not be. They're within the rules as well as in the
11 practical application of the framework. The only individual who performs
12 a function of deputy commander is the chief of staff. There are --
13 however, within the framework of the brigade and of the corps, there are
14 three other individuals who are known as assistant commanders. The terms
15 are not interchangeable, however.
16 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Thank you. And then the terms "assistant
17 commander" and "chief," for example, for security and intelligence or
18 "chief of engineering" or "chief of personnel" also was used as
19 interchangeable or at least as equal terms in regard to the position of
20 the person who has this position.
21 A. In that instance with respect to the chief of security, because he
22 is one of the designated assistant commanders, that is -- the formal term
23 is the assistant for security or intelligence affairs if it's light
24 infantry brigade. When the phrase "chief of engineering" or "chief of
25 intelligence" is used, the formal phrase should be the assistant chief of
1 staff for engineering or assistant chief of staff for intelligence. That
2 reflects the fact that engineering and intelligence fall under the
3 operative branch under the chief of staff.
4 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: What rank would an assistant commander in the
5 brigade staff typically have in normal circumstances?
6 A. In normal circumstances, I believe the position codes for the
7 assistant commanders are lieutenant colonel and perhaps colonel. The
8 brigade commander's rank should be colonel.
9 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Thank you. In your work on this and the Krstic
10 case, did you have access to the intercepts of communications for both
11 sides from NATO forces.
12 A. No, sir. We don't have access to that material. The only
13 material that we have access to are those from the ABiH, which we have
14 relevant to the searches and the cooperation. We also have some
15 intercepts which were derived with respect to the VRS's intercepts of ABiH
16 communications, which were seized documents. But we have no outside
17 intercepts which we could use to corroborate or anything of that nature.
18 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: While studying the Bosnian Muslim intercepts of
19 the VRS communications, did you anticipate any deception in conversation,
20 knowing that the VRS was aware it was listened in to?
21 A. Yes, sir. And again, there was in the Krstic case -- I answered
22 this in some depth. The issue with deception is limited generally to the
23 object of trying to draw the attention of the person listening or his
24 intelligence organs away from the true objective of what you're trying to
25 accomplish or not accomplish. The problem with deception, at least with
1 respect to the overall time of context, is that while it is possible to
2 deceive an opponent for perhaps a day or a week or several weeks, at a
3 point in time it becomes clear as events unfold and events occur that you
4 either have been deceived or that the information you're getting is valid.
5 So with respect to looking for or looking at evidence of whether
6 or not the VRS was attempting at the low level to deceive deliberately the
7 ABiH with respect to the military operations were on the ground, I looked
8 at that and I saw no evidence of it. On the larger scale, again looking
9 at those intercepts, particularly having the advantage now that we also
10 have the military documents and understanding the greater context, to see
11 whether it's part of a deception with respect to the VRS's communications
12 even with relation to the crime, and it becomes quite clear that they're
13 not. The context -- so in that respect, and I will leave again in the
14 Krstic transcript the much longer discussion that I had on that. But yes,
15 I mean, not only from the fact that we might be deceived with respect to
16 what the ABiH was giving us, but I also did take into account a potential
17 deception that the VRS itself was attempting to play on to the ABiH
18 intelligence organs.
19 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: So some information in intercepts was false?
20 A. No, sir. I believe that because of the time and the circumstances
21 involved, there were not instances where the information that was being
22 imparted by the VRS was part of a deliberate deception. There are
23 certainly instances where when you look at the context of what happens
24 that some subscribers who are talking on the phones -- or the radio
25 telephones don't know what they're talking about or don't understand the
1 greater context. But again, deception is not random. Deception is
2 designed for a military purpose to draw somebody's attention away from
3 somewhere. And that is not what I see. I do not see the evidence of a
4 deliberate military campaign with respect to telecommunications to draw
5 the ABiH's attention away from Zepa or away from the military battlefield
6 that's occurring in Zvornik.
7 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: My next question: When studying the documents,
8 did you notice any discrepancies between the intercepts and the combat
9 reports related to the critical period?
10 A. I believe with respect to the intercepts and the combat reports, I
11 believe they dovetail fairly well within context. Certainly, again, there
12 will be come instances where some correspondents may or may not know
13 what's being talked about. But I think that you can do a very good job -
14 and I believe I've done so certainly in my report, if not necessarily in
15 my testimony - of being able to dovetail within the broader military
16 context the intercepts and how they favourably compare to the events that
17 the VRS itself is describing on the ground. Again, a lot of it doesn't
18 get normally explored because within the constraints of time and the case
19 itself, many of the things that are legitimate military acts are there and
20 understood and are just not a part of the case. But on an overall level,
21 I think they do dovetail quite well with the combat reports and the
23 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Could you indicate the whereabouts of Colonel
24 Blagojevic during the period of 11 through 17 July, 1995?
25 A. It is my understanding that for the most part he was in and around
1 his headquarter's location. Based on conflicting witness statements to
2 the OTP, I don't want to speculate where on the ground he was at any given
3 time. I'm not sure that would be fair to the accused. And given the fact
4 that many of those people may well have reason to misrepresent parts of
5 their testimony or their statement because of their own liability, I
6 wouldn't want to speculate about that. However, I think the greater body
7 of information does at least place Colonel Blagojevic in and around his
8 headquarters during that period. I have no information that would
9 indicate that he was either ill or physically absent in another place.
10 And again, after 13 July when he sends his chief of staff to command its
11 command detachment towards Zepa, it would place an additional onus on him
12 as a commander to be available to make those key decisions. So I think
13 that's about as far as I can go with respect to what I do know about the
15 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Could you indicate the whereabouts of
16 Major Jokic during the same period?
17 A. Major Jokic, again during the same period, I believe his
18 whereabouts are well-corroborated with respect to the Zvornik Brigade list
19 which shows the daily whereabouts of the brigade command and staff. And
20 certainly from the period of the 13th and 14th on, I believe his
21 whereabouts are well-documented, again in and around the headquarters of
22 the Zvornik Brigade. Again, I would default back to that document for the
23 broad ones. Certainly we do have the same problem with various witness
24 statements and testimony which conflict on that matter.
25 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Have you come across any specific facts proving
1 direct and active participation of Colonel Blagojevic in the murder
3 A. No, sir. Nothing that would be something I can look at and say a
4 direct fact. Most of what I believe I've laid out in my narrative are
5 the inference based on the events occurring at his command. And to be
6 clear, there is no direct document, certainly one that I would equate to
7 the 15 July interim combat report by Colonel Pandurevic.
8 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Thank you. I have no more questions.
9 JUDGE LIU: Judge Argibay.
10 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Yes. Only questions of clarification, Mr. Butler.
11 As far as I can recall, we had by the beginning of July three kinds of
12 police around that -- I mean the military police, the MUP and the special
13 police. But on the 10th of July, this order by Mr. Tomislav Kovac
14 assigning Mr. Borovcanin as a MUP unit commander with these units that
15 compromise special police detachment, mixed company of joint MUP forces
16 and a company from the Jahorina training centre. Do you remember that
17 document, that's P157.
18 A. Yes, ma'am, I do.
19 JUDGE ARGIBAY: So Mr. Borovcanin was a MUP commander.
20 A. Yes, ma'am, he was the deputy commander of the special police
22 JUDGE ARGIBAY: So we can just join the special police brigade
23 with the MUP and tell that we have at this point in time, 10 July, 1995,
24 military police and MUP. Is that correct?
25 A. Yes, ma'am. Within the MUP categories, they're broken down
1 into -- and maybe what will make it a little less confusing. Within the
2 broader category of the MUP police, you have the special police brigade
3 and you have the companies that are organised by the local CSBs or centres
4 for security. So those are the two broad families of the MUP police. The
5 third instance that you had mentioned, the police trainees from Jahorina,
6 I think on the basis of whom they're being ordered to go with would
7 probably, if you had to lump them into category, you would lump them with
8 the special police assets under Borovcanin.
9 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Okay. That brings the other two clarification
10 questions in hand. When you were asked about this famous intercept, P203,
11 between a general and Jankovic, and this is in the transcript of the 18th
12 November, in the cross-examination, you said that you've changed from
13 considering that that was Colonel Jankovic of the Main Staff to a MUP
14 police officer Jankovic. That's in the transcript. And I wanted to ask
15 you: When he said he is police commander Jankovic, couldn't he have been
16 military police at the time?
17 A. I agree with yours. I don't recall saying the MUP police officer
18 Jankovic. I hope it's the military police Jankovic. If I said that, I
19 misstated it. And to clarify, it's the military police, not the MUP.
20 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Okay. Always in the intercepts then we have this
21 intercept that is identified as P217 where someone calling from
22 General Krstic is looking for Ljubisa. And I remember or recall that you
23 said he was looking for Borovcanin. Couldn't it be that he was looking
24 for Beara?
25 A. While I hold that open as a possibility, I think the most
1 reasonable possibility with that respect is because there is a
2 conversation between General Krstic and Borovcanin less than 30 minutes
3 later, that is the most probable identification. While I hold open that
4 possibility that he might be looking for Colonel Beara, presumably as
5 Colonel Beara was in Bratunac on the 14th of July, at that time, if he was
6 in the building they should have been able to locate him if that was the
7 intent. So, like I said, I believe it's Borovcanin, but I hold open that
8 other possibility.
9 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Okay. And to finish with a question of the
10 intercepts. In the intercept that's marked P244, that's the conversation
11 between Zivanovic and Beara, can you or do you have an explanation for why
12 Beara didn't know that Zivanovic was no more the chief commander of the
13 Drina Corps?
14 A. No, ma'am, I don't have an explanation for that. That is
15 something that in my mind that does remain an open question. One would
16 think that it would be likely that he would be aware of that fact, and it
17 remains something to this day that I cannot explain.
18 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Okay. Thank you. I abandon the intercepts and I
19 have two more clarification questions. We have this report by Mr. Vasic
20 on the 13th July, 1995, telling about the meeting held this morning with
21 General Mladic and saying that all the other tasks and there was this
22 discussion that said he's yielding all other tasks to MUP, or whatever the
23 word is. But I'm not concerned with the words.
24 I do want to ask you if you remember P539, I think that's the
25 order of General Mladic, that's on the 17th July, 1995. This integration
1 of operation to crush lagging Muslim forces. Do you recall that document?
2 A. Yes, ma'am.
3 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Okay. Isn't there something that isn't very
4 consistent on the 13th of July Mr. Vasic said that everything is on the
5 hands of the MUP. And then on the 17th, General Mladic is also talking
6 about MUP with other members of the army forces?
7 A. I agree, ma'am. And as I've indicated in my testimony, I believe
8 that while Vasic is reporting to his superiors his view of the situation,
9 as I've indicated, his forces certainly were not alone on that road or in
10 the greater context of the sweep operations. What's also missing between
11 the 13th Vasic order and the 17th order from Mladic is the 15 July and
12 16 July pieces of evidence, the one from Colonel Milanovic indicating that
13 based on the current situation and forces that are being moved around,
14 they want the Bratunac Brigade commander to assume command of all of the
15 army and MUP forces along that road. And that is a reflection in the
16 daily combat report of 16 July, that Colonel Blagojevic is taking the
17 actions that are consistent with that. So I think those are the missing
18 pieces in the context. And then when you get to the 17th July, now that
19 Colonel Blagojevic is going with a unit of his towards Zepa, there again
20 is a vacuum within the command framework, and somebody from the Main Staff
21 is now appointed to oversee those operations. But I think if you look at
22 it from the 13th through the 17th, while at various times the commander of
23 that small operation changes, the actual conduct of the operation and the
24 fact that all of the elements that are participating are coordinating
25 their activities doesn't change. That is a consistent from the 13th to
1 the 17th. It is just at what echelon it's being controlled.
2 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Okay. My last question. This is a clarification
3 from one of the questions of Mr. Karnavas. I think when there was
4 different forces working on this search of the terrain, and you were asked
5 about the difficulties of two different quarters or three just having the
6 same area. This order of the 13th July 1995 by General Krstic, and this
7 is Exhibit P472, do you recall that order?
8 A. Yes, ma'am, I do.
9 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Point 5 says: "Men who participate in the search
10 of the terrain will wear a white band on their right shoulders as an
11 identification mark."
12 Could that be an order also to the MUP personnel who was at that
13 time working at that place?
14 A. One of the unique aspects of this particular conflict, given the
15 fact that the parties of the conflict physically look the same, they talk
16 the same, they wore the same uniforms, was that within the VRS there was
17 the practice of coloured ribbons on various locations of a uniform on any
18 given day so they could identify friend from foe at distance.
19 Now, that order is specifically directed to the military
20 formations. The logical assumption should be that the MUP forces as well
21 as the non-Drina Corps military forces, the 65th Protection Regiment
22 military police, who were also as part of those operations, the logical
23 assumption would be that they too would have received the orders to do
24 that. We don't have an order that reflects that, either in the terms of a
25 verbal intercept or a documentary order to any of those units. So I agree
1 it is a logical assumption that they would, in fact, do that. I just
2 don't know that with respect to the MUP and with respect to the military
3 police of the 65th Protection Regiment that it was done.
4 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Thank you, I have no further questions.
5 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
6 Mr. Butler, did you testify this morning in the Krstic case?
7 A. Yes, sir, I did.
8 JUDGE LIU: Did you make any corrections concerning the mistakes
9 in the transcript of this case, the Blagojevic case?
10 A. There were three specific areas of the testimony that they were
11 introducing which I indicated were corrections. In two of the three
12 instances, the name Obrenovic was transcribed when, in fact, the
13 individual we were discussing was Erdemovic. And in the third instance
14 there was one particular passage that was attributed to the witness which,
15 in fact, it is my understanding that is a comment to the Court from
16 Mr. McCloskey.
17 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. Just for the information of the
18 parties, those three places are in the transcript, page 5.412, line 16,
19 page 5.406, line 14, and page 5.376, line 19. This Trial Chamber would
20 like to take the testimony of Mr. Butler this morning concerning the
21 correction of those places into the evidence of this case through 92 bis.
22 Any questioning concerning of the Judges' questions?
23 Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
24 Further examination by Mr. McCloskey:
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Just perhaps a clarification.
1 Q. Mr. Butler, regarding the conversation between when General Krstic
2 was looking for Ljubisa, I think you stated on the record that on the 14th
3 of July that Beara was in Bratunac. Is that correct?
4 A. I'm sorry. That should be 13 July.
5 Q. Okay. And did you have a chance to review your entire testimony
6 in this case prior to speaking to the Appellant Chamber?
7 A. What I reviewed was the passages that the Defence wanted to
8 introduce. I am currently going now through the volume of my testimony
9 trying to determine if there are any errors in that. But I have not read
10 through the entire volume of my testimony yet.
11 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, I just ask that because there may be
12 more to come on the corrections, of course. And I have nothing else.
13 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
14 Mr. Karnavas.
15 Further cross-examination by Mr. Karnavas:
16 MR. KARNAVAS: I have one maybe two corrections.
17 Q. Mr. Butler, when you were testifying this morning, and had I known
18 I would have been there watching it, when you were testifying, did the
19 famous "up there" intercept come into play?
20 A. The intercept in that respect was -- we didn't talk about it. It
21 was part of the written submissions of the transcript. And I indicated
22 that with the exception of three minor transcription errors, that I
23 adopted that in full.
24 Q. Adopted that portion of the testimony --
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. That is --
2 A. The three that were introduced.
3 Q. I guess my question is: You adopted your portion of the testimony
4 in this case, and that is that since the Krstic case there's been other
5 testimony that has come into light with respect to who might have -- how
6 to interpret that particular intercept as it relates to the killings that
7 occurred in Branjevo Farm on the 16th. Am I correct?
8 A. Yes, sir. But again, what was said in this particular case was --
9 I affirmed, there was no additional discussion.
10 Q. Okay.
11 MR. KARNAVAS: I have nothing further.
12 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
13 Mr. Stojanovic.
14 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] We have no questions which would
15 arise from all the previous questions, Your Honours.
16 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
17 Well, the most difficult part is the admission of the documents.
18 Mr. McCloskey, are there any documents -- of course there are so many
19 documents to tender through Mr. Butler.
20 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President. I have a list that everybody
21 else has, and it's an 11-page list. And I would just offer that material.
22 But along with it as a declaration of the current team leader of team 6
23 that acknowledges that he's gone over this list and researched the records
24 and that this list identifying the various places where the documents came
25 from is correct. I believe Mr. Butler assisted in that process. I did
1 not remember to ask Mr. Butler about that. So I believe this list that
2 I'm providing you reflects all of the exhibits that have been referred to
3 and where the Prosecution got them. And with that foundation and with Mr.
4 Butler's testimony and with the various documents as we've discussed them,
5 I would offer all these documents into evidence. And I'm not aware of any
6 problem regarding that with the Defence. We haven't had a real chance to
7 talk about it, so there may have been something. But I would guess
8 between me and the Defence we could work out any issues, and I don't know
9 if they've had time to look over this long list either. So that's -- I
10 don't think we need to bring in Alistair Graham. If the Defence would
11 accept the declaration as a stipulation under the Rules, but we can of
12 course do that if necessary.
13 JUDGE LIU: You see, my question to you is is there any stop in
14 the sequence of those numbers?
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: Ms. Stewart's the expert on that, and there
16 probably is. We never can get things perfect in terms of sequence and
17 there are gaps. We can have those identified if that would be helpful.
18 And I'm sure with a little more study, we can identify potential gaps. We
19 sometimes leave gaps to fill in things. So that would be normal.
20 JUDGE LIU: I see. Can you do it now?
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes --
22 JUDGE LIU: I mean, just for the sake of the record.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. I'm sure Ms. Stewart can do it, and perhaps
24 if we could just have a minute or two, she will be able to get back to me
25 on that.
1 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Any objections, Mr. Karnavas?
2 MR. KARNAVAS: Thank you, Mr. President, Your Honours. The list
3 is quite comprehensive. As Mr. Butler was testifying and referring to
4 documents, I don't recall anything that at least I had objections to with
5 respect to the admissibility, perhaps as far as the weight is concerned.
6 We were handed this list rather -- this afternoon. It is comprehensive.
7 I do take Mr. Alistair Graham's word. His signature is on it, I would
8 assume that he's an honourable man and would do the right thing. And so I
9 have no problems with that.
10 I would ask that I be given an opportunity to look over this list
11 over the next couple of days in great detail just to be on the safe side.
12 If there is something, I obviously would bring it to the Prosecution's
13 attention first, see if there's anything that we can resolve. But
14 frankly, from the looks of it, it would appear that on face value I have
15 no problems with the admissibility of any of this evidence.
16 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
17 Mr. Stojanovic, do you have any objections to the admission of
18 those documents into the evidence?
19 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we have gone over
20 the list of exhibits which the Prosecution wishes to tender through the
21 testimony of Mr. Butler. And in principle, if you give time to
22 Mr. Karnavas, then I would also use that time so that I could also express
23 my position. But if you think that we need to express our position today,
24 I would like to say the following: For understandable reasons given
25 previously, this Defence is opposed to admitting any exhibit which refers
1 to or relates to the intercepts. Because we believe that this is still a
2 topic that needs to be discussed further.
3 Also, we do not wish exhibits to be tendered, the following
4 exhibits: P507 and P509 and P534 for the reasons we previously stated
5 relating to the possession of these exhibits and also the fact that they
6 were handed in shortly prior to the beginning of trial by Mr. Obrenovic.
7 So the chain of custody of these documents for those reasons and the
8 possibility of manipulation of these documents. As far as the other
9 exhibits being tendered here, and in view of our own defence and in view
10 of the fact how many of these documents even refer to the role of
11 Dragan Jokic or the role of the engineering of the Zvornik Brigade, so to
12 the extent that is mentioned we will not have any major objections for any
13 of these exhibits to be admitted. Because we are not contesting any of
14 them. In any case, the list that we received from the Prosecution when we
15 received the documents that are to be tendered, which was a month ago, we
16 hope that we can state our position. As far as the exhibits we received
17 today, I am not in a position right now to go from one exhibit to the
18 next, but I believe that it's the same list and that the exhibits on the
19 list are the same.
20 JUDGE LIU: Well, I didn't find that document P534. Maybe it's
21 located somewhere else.
22 MR. McCLOSKEY: Your Honour, it -- I thought I found it, but
23 now -- yes, it is. It's a bit out of sequence. It's after 520.
24 JUDGE LIU: Oh, yes, on page 9?
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Page 9. I don't know how I found it, but that's
1 where it's sitting. And just one clarification for Mr. Stojanovic,
2 Exhibit 509 is the IKM or forward command post operations duty logbook.
3 And that was actually seized from the Zvornik Brigade back in the search,
4 I think has Mr. Butler has testified. In addition, I should say that
5 Mr. Graham's list stating where these things came from in his declaration
6 is Exhibit P356.
7 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE LIU: Well, concerning the documents and the comments made
10 by the parties, this Bench would like to give three days to the parties to
11 review this very comprehensive list. And if there is any objections, I
12 hope the Defence team would file their submissions next Monday. So if the
13 time limit is passed, this Trial Chamber will take the actions.
14 Is that agreeable to the parties, taking into consideration that
15 tomorrow and Friday we are not going to sit.
16 MR. KARNAVAS: Yes, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
18 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Thank you.
19 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: Excuse me, Mr. President. I have the answer to
22 your previous question.
23 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: And for the record, the following exhibits were
25 left blank: Number 373; number 418; 420 through 422; 429 through 433; 436
1 through 438; 454 through 455; 460 through 463; and 473 through 475.
2 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
3 Well, let's deal with the Defence team's exhibits. Mr. Karnavas.
4 MR. KARNAVAS: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE LIU: You have to inform me which document we have to work
6 on, because it seems to me that almost every day we got a new list.
7 MR. KARNAVAS: But you will be pleased to note, Your Honour -- you
8 will be very pleased to note that I have been able to fit them all on less
9 than one page, the ones that I wish to introduce.
10 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
11 MR. KARNAVAS: These -- the ones that we wish to introduce,
12 Your Honour, are D77, D78, and D79. These are the photographs from the
13 Krstic case, as you may recall. Then it would be D80 and D81; those were
14 the transcripts from the witnesses that I questioned Mr. Butler with
15 respect to his interrogative techniques, good guy, bad guy, one was where
16 he played sort of the bad guy and then another one, the good guy. Then
17 D82 is the excerpts from the brigade rules. D83, excerpts from the
18 transcript on page 55, line 1, to page 56 line 3. D84, the manual for the
19 work command and staffs, the relevant paragraphs. And D85 rules of
20 security service organs in the armed forces of the SFRJ, paragraph 83.
21 So that's all, Your Honour. It's very modest, as you can see, and
22 very relevant.
23 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
24 Any objections, Mr. McCloskey?
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Your Honour. The OTP interviews D80 and D81
1 of these two people are not admissible under any Rule and are not
2 relevant. They were used to cross-examine Mr. Butler, which is fine. And
3 the excerpt from the transcript, perhaps Mr. Karnavas can tell us what
4 transcript that's from and what the relevance of that is, if he remembers.
5 I -- again, transcripts are -- it's possible, but I don't see how that
6 comes into play.
7 JUDGE LIU: Well, concerning the transcript, I think if it's from
8 another case, we could take that into consideration. But if it's from
9 this case, I don't think it's necessary. Maybe Mr. Karnavas could shed
10 some light on that issue.
11 MR. KARNAVAS: Your Honour, as you might recall, we took -- or I
12 took a couple of questions and a couple of answers and we sort of
13 dissected them, this was of the witness's testimony, in order to
14 demonstrate the lack of substance and in the answer itself given the
15 filler words. I do think that in light of -- even though they are part of
16 the original transcript that it is the gentleman's -- my questions and his
17 answers, I think that that is an instructive piece of evidence, because we
18 took apart those questions and answers. And I think when it comes time to
19 perhaps review that part of the transcript at the end of the trial which
20 we think is relevant in determining or deciphering some of the answers
21 given by this particular gentleman, I think it would be very useful to
22 have that, because we did not read it back into the record.
23 So I know it's a little bit unusual, but nonetheless I don't think
24 it is harmful to the Prosecution's case. As far as the statements that I
25 wanted to introduce, D80 and D81, first of all, it is proper. You can
1 introduce them. Whether they should or should not, that's another
2 question. And I don't want to be giving lectures on evidence to the
3 Prosecution at this point. However, there were some excerpts from those
4 particular conversations. We would be willing to accept at least those
5 pages that we made references to, because my memory is a little bit fading
6 away as to whether I read the entire question and answer process. But at
7 least the two pages or three pages of each transcript should be admitted
8 into evidence. Again, I think it would be instructive.
9 In the alternative, if of course I read the entire question and
10 the entire answer, then it would be superfluous. But I do want to stress
11 that there's no such thing as not being able to get this kind of evidence.
12 Particularly in light of the Rules of Evidence where hearsay is admissible
13 in this particular case, and the witness has been given the opportunity to
14 be confronted on that information.
15 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Well, at this stage, I think the document D77,
16 D78, D79, D82, D84, and D85 are admitted into the evidence. As for the
17 document D83, we have very serious doubts about this method to dissect the
18 transcript. I quite agree with you Mr. Karnavas that that is a very
19 constructive way to deal with the evidence, but we have to know the whole
20 picture of the transcript. So D83 is not admitted into the evidence. But
21 your questions and your submissions are all in the transcript and we'll
22 take that into consideration.
23 As for D80 and D81, as a general practice, those conversations or
24 interviews with a witness or suspect are not admitted into the evidence.
25 So those two documents, D80 and D81 are not admitted.
1 I was informed by the Court Deputy that D77, D78, and D79 should
2 be under seal, since there are some writings there. It is so decided.
3 Now I turn to the Defence team of Mr. Jokic. Yes. Do you have
4 any documents to tender, Mr. Stojanovic?
5 MR. STOJANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. We would like
6 to tender D39/3, that is the takeover of duty record. Then D41/3, that is
7 Rule 21 of the engineering company or platoon. Then the relevant parts of
8 the statement, it is up to you to decide whether this is admissible or
9 not, by the witness Nenad Simic, this is D44, when he is talking about his
10 personal presence and the presence of other officers in the headquarters
11 of the Zvornik Brigade. D45, only the relevant page of the interview
12 given by Ljubo Bojanovic. And D47/1 and /2, only the relevant parts of
13 the statement given by Dragan Jevtic about the command of the engineering
14 company and the presence of the commander. We also would like to tender
15 D50, the Official Gazette of Republika Srpska, in which Article 27 of the
16 degree on the organisation and functioning of the civilian protection was
17 published. D52, information on cooperation with the enemy compiled and
18 sent to the military Prosecution in Bijeljina by assistant commander
19 Dragan Nikolic. D53, an excerpt from -- no, we don't want to tender D53.
20 Then D57 and D58, those are definitions published in the military lexicon.
21 D59, an article published in the Slobodna Bosna weekly in Sarajevo. That
22 would be all that we wish to tender according to our list.
23 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.
24 Any objections?
25 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, Mr. President. Just to go through those
1 again, D39 appears to be some sort of a record regarding transfer of duty
2 between a guy named Lackovic and Dragan Jokic. There has been no
3 authentication, or no foundation for that document. And while it doesn't
4 seem like a big deal, I just don't want to start accepting documents out
5 of the blue like this without some sort of foundation. I may be able to
6 work this out with Mr. Stojanovic. As I said, we haven't seen this
7 documents before. The combat rules -- and going to D41, the combat rules
8 for engineering, Mr. Stojanovic was kind enough to give us those books so
9 we could photocopy them, and that's no problem. D44, the interview with
10 Nenad Simic, I would object for the same grounds I objected regarding
11 Mr. Karnavas's interview statements. Same thing with D47 the interview
12 with Dragan Jevtic. Same thing with D47 OTP information report. D50, the
13 Official Gazette that was made reference to. These gazettes have not been
14 readily available over the years. I think we have a lot more than we used
15 to. And again there hasn't been any foundation for that. I think
16 speaking to Mr. Stojanovic we can work that out and I want to make sure I
17 get the complete collection of the gazettes, so if there's any related
18 rules or statutes we take a look at that. I don't see that as a problem.
19 D52 is no problem. That's a document that we did seize. D57 and 58, from
20 the 1969 military lexicon, no problem, though we do have the same military
21 lexicon a little more recent version we may take a look at to see if
22 there's any differences. And the article from Slobodna Bosna I would
23 object to as to relevance and probative value.
24 JUDGE LIU: Well, thank you very much. As for the document D39,
25 it's very difficult for the Trial Chamber to make a decision at this
1 moment. And I hope after this sitting tomorrow or any day before Monday
2 the parties could meet to solve the problem that is raised by the
3 Prosecution. And if there is any result, I hope -- if there's still some
4 objections, the Prosecution should file something against it. And if
5 there is no problem, I hope that Mr. Stojanovic could inform us about the
6 consultations between you and the Prosecution. So we have this document
7 pending with the Prosecution's documents. The D41/3 is admitted into the
8 evidence. D44, D45, D46, D47/1, and D47/2, as a rule they are not
9 admitted into the evidence. As for D50, we don't think there's any
10 problem with this document with the Official Gazette. Generally speaking,
11 this Trial Chamber will take these kind of official document into the
12 evidence. So this document is admitted into the evidence. As for the D52
13 is admitted into the evidence. D57, D58, these two documents are admitted
14 into the evidence. As for D59, on this document we agree with the
15 Prosecution. We don't see much relevance to this particular case or
16 through this witness. At this moment, we will not admit it into the
17 evidence, and maybe in the future in the Defence case they still have the
18 opportunity to re-tender it if the relevancy is established in a more
19 proper way. It is so decided.
20 Yes Mr. McCloskey.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: Sorry, Mr. President, I know it's late.
22 JUDGE LIU: Yes.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: Just one other matter. There was a document D17
24 which was a Bratunac Brigade report allegedly drafted or executed by
25 Mr. Blagojevic that was provided by the Defence. Mr. Butler talked about
1 it at some length I think. And we still don't have any record of where it
2 came from. And I think Mr. Butler testified a bit about that. And I
3 don't know if -- I know counsel has been very busy, and they may not have
4 been able to track down where it came from, but that is a document that
5 Mr. Butler has talked about that is still up in the air and maybe they can
6 shed some light on it as well. I think Mr. Butler did say it looked okay
7 to him, but that's about all we have.
8 JUDGE LIU: Well, to my understanding that the Defence did not
9 tender this document, am I right, Mr. Karnavas?
10 MR. KARNAVAS: That's correct, Your Honour. Although it's -- the
11 Prosecutor is either being mistaken or -- I won't go -- where I believe
12 he's going, but Mr. Butler did discuss it extensively and found that he
13 had no problems with that particular document we have not tendered. But
14 nonetheless I believe if we look at Mr. Butler's testimony and put it into
15 context, as he likes to put it, with what was happening on the ground and
16 with the order that was issued by the Drina Corps of July 2nd, if we put
17 it into that general context and we look at Mr. Butler's testimony, it
18 would appear that Mr. Butler himself laid adequate foundation for that
19 particular document to be admitted. But the answer to your question, Your
20 Honour, the long and short of it is: No, we haven't tendered it yet, but
21 we are discussing it quite a bit.
22 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: Mr. President, that document was tendered on
24 25/09/03 through the testimony of Mr. Nikolic. And that's why I bring it
25 up, because Mr. Butler has talked about it. I was just hoping there was
1 some further research on the document and its origins to help us out, as I
2 will quote my learned colleague.
3 MR. KARNAVAS: We are searching and we have been rather busy.
4 JUDGE LIU: Well, I think this Bench made a ruling that once the
5 proper foundation is established, this document could be admitted into the
6 evidence. I think we made that ruling somewhere on the 1st of October.
7 But this issue is still pending, as I understand.
8 MR. KARNAVAS: I do understand that, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much.
10 Well, Mr. Butler, thank you very much indeed for coming to
11 The Hague to give your testimony. It's really a quite long period of
12 time. And we wish you to have a pleasant journey back home and have a
13 pleasant Thanksgiving. I hope there's some turkey left.
14 THE WITNESS: Three growing boys, I'm not optimistic. But thank
15 you very much, sir, it has been a privilege to testify before this
17 JUDGE LIU: Thank you very much. I think the hearing is
18 adjourned. We'll meet next Monday.
19 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
20 at 7.07 p.m., to be reconvened on Monday,
21 the 1st day of December, 2003, at 9.00 a.m.