1 Thursday, 25th September 1997
2 (10.00 am)
3 (Accused brought in)
4 JUDGE JORDA: We can now resume, continuing the testimony of
5 Witness D. Could I ask the Registrar to have the
6 witness brought in with the necessary precautions,
7 specifically in respect of the curtain. Does everybody
8 hear me? General Blaskic, do you hear, does the Defence
9 hear, the Prosecution, colleagues, assistants? That is
11 (Witness entered court)
12 JUDGE JORDA: Witness D, do you hear me?
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 JUDGE JORDA: Did you rest well? Are you all right?
15 A. Yes, I am fine, thank you, well rested.
16 JUDGE JORDA: Then please relax, you are before judges and
17 you are in safety.
18 Prosecution, you could now continue your
19 questions, paying careful attention, as all of us
20 should, the Defence, the judges, not to let any
21 identifying elements slip in to what is said. I have a
22 button here that I can use for corrections if necessary,
23 but I would also ask my colleagues to take the same
24 precautions as far as I am concerned. I give you the
25 floor, Mr. Prosecutor.
1 Witness D (continued)
2 Examined by MR. KEHOE (continued)
3 Q. Thank you Mr. President, good morning your Honours.
4 Witness D, good morning.
5 A. Good morning.
6 Q. We left off yesterday and you had just finished talking
7 about the digging of trenches in Pirici and that you had
8 been taken back to the cinema; do you recall that, sir?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Can you tell the court what happened after you got taken
11 back to the cinema, after you finished digging the
12 trenches in Pirici?
13 A. They brought us to the cinema in Vitez and I went to the
14 cinema hall and it was full. There was no room for us
15 and then they told us that there was room in the
16 basement where the heating facilities for the cinema
17 were. I went downstairs and downstairs everything was
18 full too, so we could not stay even down there and it
19 was very bad down there, it was dusty, dirty, there was
20 coal dust, there were some old chairs, people were
21 sitting in them.
22 Then we were told that we could go to the offices
23 of the former League of Communists that were upstairs,
24 that is to say, above the cinema offices. So we went
25 upstairs. There were three or four offices there full
1 of people too, and in one of the offices a relative of
2 mine was in one of these offices, and I stayed with him,
3 so I stayed on with him.
4 In this office, which was the last in the row of
5 offices in the hall, there were about 30 people
6 altogether. We used it for sleeping, for lying down in
7 that office, and we could stand and talk in the hallway,
8 and we would mostly lie down in the office, so I spent
9 the night there. The next morning, military policemen
10 of the HVO came in and they started calling out people
11 who would be going with them. They called my name out
12 too, out to dig trenches --
13 Q. If I can stop you for one moment.
14 JUDGE JORDA: Excuse me.
15 MR. KEHOE: You were saying that the military police called
16 your name out and other names. Continue from there,
17 Witness D.
18 A. They decided that I would go to dig and I went out in
19 front of the cinema and the same van, the same closed
20 van that brought me in from Pirici, they put 20 of us
21 into the van and they took us to Rijeka, rather in the
22 direction of Rijeka. We knew the terrain and we knew
23 that the van had turned left towards the village of
24 Krcevine. They brought us to the village of Krcevine,
25 in the middle of the village, approximately.
1 We stopped in front of a house and we went out and
2 we waited for about 10 or 15 minutes before an elderly
3 man came by, a Croat by nationality. He was armed with
4 a Slovak rifle, and then he took us uphill.
5 We moved towards Ljubici, towards Preocica. They
6 brought us to a house there, which was at the outskirts
7 of the forest and they had some kind of command there.
8 They left us up there. I and another prisoner were sent
9 to the line there to dig. We came there and there were
10 three dugouts there already that were made before, but
11 they brought us into widen them, to make them bigger and
12 to connect them with trenches, so that is where we were
13 working that day, until dusk.
14 When we finished then we were taken back to this
15 command, which was about 150 metres or 100 metres from
16 those dugouts. Then I and this man who was with me were
17 sent to dig near the forest, to the left of this house
18 where the others who were with us before were already
19 digging dugouts. So we were digging in that forest.
20 These colleagues of mine who had come with me had
21 already started digging dugouts and they had dug about
22 five of them and then this friend of mine and I were
23 ordered to start digging a new dugout at the end, so we
24 were digging according to the instructions given to us
25 by HVO soldiers. We were digging all afternoon, and all
2 In the morning, we had not slept all night, in the
3 morning, we were told that we should bring wooden boards
4 made of beech wood, about six centimetres thick and four
5 or five metres long. These were raw timber boards, they
6 had just been cut, and there were 20 of us altogether.
7 The boards were heavy and two of us would carry one
8 board, so all day, we were carrying boards and covering
9 these dugouts, and some time in the afternoon, around
10 lunch-time, we brought these boards before this command,
11 this house where they were and they told us to stop
12 there and they gave us lunch.
13 For the first time since I had been taken captive
14 were we given a cooked meal, because before that we were
15 only given canned fish and bread. We were given boiled
16 beef and potatoes on that occasion. The food was good,
17 tasty. When I finished eating, I took this board that
18 I had been carrying with another older man who was about
19 50 or 55 years old. I told him that he and I could work
20 together and that I was stronger than he was and that
21 I would help him, so that he would not strain himself,
22 so he continued eating and I took this board to take it
23 out to the dugout.
24 So I had set out and when I made two or three
25 steps, I was told to stop and two prisoners went by me,
1 one of them, Gadzun Almir, was carrying a board and the
2 other one was called Zuljevic, I do not know his first
3 name. They were about 17 or 18 years old, no more than
4 that. When Almir went by me, when he was about five
5 metres away from me, a shot rang out, I threw the board
6 and I lay on the ground. When I looked up, Zuljevic was
7 lying next to me. He also threw this board and when we
8 looked ahead, Almir was lying on his back and we saw
9 that he was hit. We crawled up to him, Zuljevic and I,
10 and I approached him from his right-hand side and
11 Zuljevic on his left-hand side. We took him by the
12 shoulders and we dragged him to safety, we thought.
13 As we were dragging him, there was blood all along
14 the way, five or six centimetres. He was still alive,
15 and the last thing I heard him say was "say hello to my
16 mother". We turned him on to his stomach and we saw a
17 big wound on his back and somebody from the HVO had
18 given us bandages already, thrown bandages to us, and
19 this entire big bandage covered the wound. We were
20 given a stretcher only later, so we put him on the
21 stretcher but already then he was showing no sign of
22 life, and we carried him on this stretcher to this house
23 in Krcevine where they had originally brought us.
24 Then we put him into a passenger car, a Yugo, that
25 is the name of the car. They opened the trunk door for
1 us and we put him into the car, the stretcher would fit
2 into the entire car, and that is where he lay. Then we
3 were taken back and we were told to continue working.
4 We took these boards and we continued to cover these
6 Soon later, these soldiers told us that the young
7 boy had died, before even reaching the clinic. Then it
8 seemed to them that we were not carrying a lot of these
9 boards, that this would take too long and then we were
10 told that every one of us had to carry one board, so
11 then we started carrying one board per person, but they
12 were very heavy, so until dusk, we had completed
13 covering these dugouts.
14 Then this second evening, I was ordered to dig
15 trenches in this same forest, and it was night-time and
16 I could not even see who the Croatian soldiers were, but
17 an acquaintance of mine, a friend of mine was there
18 among them and he recognised me and he asked me whether
19 he could do something to help me. I asked him whether
20 he could let me sleep for at least an hour or two. He
21 let me and this person who was with me sleep for about
22 three hours, because his shift was until 12.00, so we
23 managed to get some sleep, three hours of sleep, near
24 their trenches.
25 He woke us up at 12.00, then other soldiers came
1 and we were taken up above the cemetery, the chapel in
2 Krcevine, because there were some dugouts up there too
3 made from rails. We were taken up there in order to
4 break these dugouts so that we could build a new dugout
5 using these rails, and then I mounted an anti-aircraft
6 gun there later. They gave it to me. I was mounting it
7 there together with two other people.
8 As we were carrying these rails that were very
9 heavy, about 180 centimetres long and very heavy, two of
10 us would carry one, but at one moment a soldier whom
11 I did not know came up to me and told these two people
12 that I should carry a rail on my own, so I carried about
13 ten of them by myself. These two would load them on my
14 shoulders and I would carry them on my own.
15 When we finished this dugout for this
16 anti-aircraft gun, we were ordered to mount it inside.
17 After that, it was already dawn, and they let us, all of
18 us, about 20 of us, get a bit of rest in the little
19 forest. This was already the 19th, because that man had
20 already been killed, so we were sitting and resting
21 there for about an hour and then we were taken away
22 again to finally complete the dugouts that we were
23 making before that, because during the night, during the
24 previous night, we could not finish them, so they took
25 us there to finish them in daylight, the way they wanted
1 it to be.
2 After that, after finishing this work, they took
3 us back in the same van that they had brought us in.
4 They took us back to the cinema in Vitez.
5 Q. Before we talk about going back to the cinema in Vitez,
6 let me ask you a few questions, Witness D, about the
7 digging of trenches in Krcevine. You said that you were
8 selected from the cinema by some military police who
9 took us to Krcevine to dig the trenches; is that
11 A. Yes, that is correct.
12 Q. When you got to Krcevine, there was a command centre, a
13 HVO command centre, is that right?
14 A. Yes, that house where their command was.
15 Q. Were there HVO soldiers at this command centre?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Where were these HVO soldiers from?
18 A. The soldiers that we found there at the line were from
19 Novi Travnik, and their commander was from Novi Travnik
21 Q. So these soldiers were from the Novi Travnik brigade and
22 not the brigade in Vitez, is that right?
23 A. Yes, they were from Novi Travnik.
24 Q. Were these soldiers military policemen or regular HVO?
25 A. Regular HVO, rank and file.
1 Q. When you got to dig trenches, you said that some
2 trenches had already been dug, is that correct?
3 A. Yes, they were dug. Just above their command there were
4 dugouts that were covered, they were finished,
5 90 per cent.
6 Q. Did it seem to you that there was a plan for the digging
7 of these trenches and these dugouts?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Was part of that plan, for instance, mounting this
10 anti-aircraft weapon that you said that you and other
11 Muslims mounted in the trench?
12 A. Well yes, from that place where we had mounted it they
13 could keep under control Ljubic to the left and Tolovici
14 to the right. That is the position where it was. They
15 could keep both these villages under control.
16 Q. Witness D, when you were there digging trenches, was
17 there any fighting going on between the HVO and the
19 A. There was no fighting during those days.
20 Q. Let us talk about the murder of Gadzun Almir, who was
21 shot in your presence. Was that a shot that had come
22 from far away or was that shot nearby?
23 A. The shot was from nearby, we could judge that by the
25 Q. You had become familiar with that terrain, had you not,
1 both during the time you were digging trenches and
3 A. Yes, just as I got out of Vitez and joined the ranks of
4 the army again, I came to Krcevine, I was just above
5 that place where Almir was hit, was shot.
6 Q. Based on what you learned of that terrain, did that shot
7 come from the Armija lines or from some place else?
8 A. The shot that killed Almir certainly did not come from
9 the Armija because he was facing the Armija line and he
10 was shot in the back, and if you look at the
11 configuration of the terrain, a bullet could not have
12 come from down there and hit him in the back.
13 Q. So based on that, what did you conclude? Who shot
14 Gadzun Almir?
15 A. In my opinion, one of the HVO soldiers. Most probably
16 the one who shot him was behind this house, because if
17 one looks at Almir's wound, he was hit by a bullet which
18 made an enormous wound, a high velocity bullet.
19 Q. Witness D, during your digging of trenches in Krcevine,
20 did you learn about the digging of trenches in Kuber?
21 A. While we were digging trenches there, the soldiers who
22 were from Novi Travnik told us that HVO soldiers who
23 were local people from there mistreated some of the
24 people from the group who had been there before us, and
25 that their commander punished two HVO soldiers by
1 sending them to Kuber, and they told us that Kuber was
2 the worst line of all for them and that all who were
3 sent to Kuber were sent there by way of punishment, so
4 they told us that two of these soldiers were sent to
5 Kuber as punishment.
6 Q. So a way to discipline these HVO troops was for their
7 commander to send them to Kuber, is that correct?
8 A. Yes, and just before Almir was killed, we had found out
9 that these two people returned to Krcevine, to the
10 line there.
11 Q. After you finished digging trenches in Krcevine, you
12 were taken back to the cinema, is that right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Tell the judges what happened when --
15 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Mr. Kehoe.
16 MR. KEHOE: Witness D, tell the judges what happened when you
17 got taken back to the cinema.
18 A. We were taken back to the cinema, I went back to the
19 same office, the same room where I had been staying with
20 my relative and these other people, and I was not sent
21 out to dig trenches any more. They came, once again
22 they took away a group of people and they returned.
23 Soon after that, the Red Cross came and we gave our data
24 and we were recorded as prisoners and people from the
25 Red Cross told us that we would not be taken out to dig
1 trenches any more because we had complained that we were
2 being taken out to dig trenches, and they told us we
3 would not be taken out again.
4 Q. So the Red Cross knew that you and other Muslims had
5 been taken out to dig trenches?
6 A. Yes, because each and every one of us, when we made our
7 statements, we said that we had been sent out to dig
8 trenches, some of us once and other people twice and
9 other people three times, so we all told them we had
10 been sent out there.
11 Q. After you had this conversation with the Red Cross where
12 they told you that you did not have to dig trenches any
13 more, what happened?
14 A. Until then, we had been eating canned fish all the
15 time. In the cinema, we would also get a can of fish
16 and a piece of bread. After that, they allowed our
17 wives, who had stayed back home -- when I am saying "our
18 wives", I am saying the wives of all the captured
19 Muslims -- all our wives were allowed to bring us food,
20 so we were better fed and we all shared in the food. We
21 all ate together. We did not pay any attention to whose
22 food was which particular food.
23 My wife had been staying with my aunt in Kolonija,
24 that is what we call a particular part of town. On the
25 eve of 1st May, in the evening, a HVO policeman came and
1 he called out my relative's name. My relative went out
2 with him and he returned after ten minutes. He came
3 back to us, and I asked him what happened and he told me
4 that he had been allowed to go back home.
5 Q. Excuse me a moment. (Pause). Continue, sir.
6 A. As he got back, I asked him "what happened, what have
7 you been doing", and he told me he was being released,
8 he could go home. I said "how come", and he said his
9 name was called out and he was asked whether he would
10 like to go home and he said he would like to go home, so
11 he was going home. I told him to tell this HVO soldier
12 to call out my name too, if he could possibly. So after
13 a while this same HVO soldier came and called out my
14 name. I went downstairs and they took me to the former
15 cafe which was there within the cinema and a HVO soldier
16 was sitting there at the table and he told me that
17 I could take a seat too, and as I sat down, he asked me
18 where I wanted to go, whether I wanted to go to Travnik,
19 Zenica, Stari Vitez or home. I said that I wanted to go
20 home, and he gave me a piece of paper to sign. I signed
21 it. I did not even read it or anything, but he told me
22 I was free and I could go home.
23 I went out of this cafe and my relative was
24 standing in front of the cinema. I stood there with
25 him. It was already 10.00 pm, it was dark, there were
1 no lights or anything and we were afraid to go home by
2 ourselves. A policeman, a HVO policeman, came out and
3 asked us what the problem was and we told him that we
4 were afraid to go home by ourselves. He told us to take
5 the middle of the road, towards our homes, and that
6 there would be no problem and we started going along the
7 middle of the road.
8 My relative was following me, a few steps behind,
9 and we went to the house of my aunt. My wife was there
10 too, my two children, and my mother and my father, who
11 was released before we were released, because he was an
12 elderly man. I do not know exactly what the date was,
13 but they released these elderly people on that date and
14 they were allowed to go home and my father went home.
15 So he was already home.
16 I spent the night there at my aunt's house, and
17 the next day, I, my wife, my children and my mother went
18 to my home.
19 MR. KEHOE: If I can stop you there for one moment.
20 Mr. President, your Honours, we are going to begin to
21 talk about some events involving Witness D's home which
22 will cause him to be identified and we would ask that we
23 could go into closed session at this point.
24 JUDGE JORDA: The judges agree. The witness has already
25 given some identifying elements and I would like to ask
1 the Registrar to check the transcript to be sure that
2 those elements are redacted. Yes, we can order the
3 private session now. Is that what you wanted, private
4 session, Mr. Kehoe? Did you want the complete closed
5 session, or is the private session sufficient?
6 MR. KEHOE: Complete closed session, Mr. President, because we
7 are going to be talking about some exhibits and he will
8 have to stand up to talk about this exhibit, so I think
9 we have to go into complete closed session.
10 JUDGE JORDA: Does the Defence have any objection to that,
11 to complete closed session?
12 MR. HAYMAN: No objection, your Honour.
13 JUDGE JORDA: All right. Then this will now be a completely
14 closed session and we will take the necessary
16 (In closed session)
13 Pages 2728 to 2757 redacted - in closed session
21 (In open session)
22 MR. NOBILO: Witness D, we are in public session again, but
23 with protective measures. I am interested in 16th April
24 1993 at 6.00 in the morning. Did you hear a siren of
25 general danger?
1 A. No.
2 Q. On 16th or 17th or 18th, those days, was there any
3 shelling in Vitez?
4 A. I cannot remember.
5 Q. You cannot remember. When your comrade in arms was
6 wounded, I am talking about the big wound you mentioned,
7 was there any fighting, was there a conflict before
8 that, was he threatened by someone?
9 A. No, he was not.
10 Q. Did you see who could have shot him?
11 A. No.
12 Q. You said that at Krcevine, the commander was from
13 Novi Travnik. Tell me, do you know what brigade they
14 belonged to?
15 A. I do not know exactly, but I know they were all from
16 Novi Travnik.
17 Q. You said that you were afraid to go home when you were
18 released from the cinema?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Tell me, where did you feel safer, at home or in the
21 cinema, when you look at it from present day distance?
22 A. I felt safer in the cinema than when I got back home.
23 Q. You said that your neighbours did not live in houses and
24 you showed what these empty houses were, you marked them
25 with a yellow pen. Did they live in Vitez, or where did
1 they live?
2 A. At first, we did not know where they were and but later
3 on you would find out that they lived in town with some
4 of their friends, they were there.
5 Q. That was the part that was under HVO control?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. You went along the front-line and finally you crossed the
8 front-line with your wife and children. In your opinion,
9 was there a clear line of delineation between the
10 BH army and the HVO?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. So it was quite clear?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. When the Red Cross came to the cinema in Vitez, were you
15 asked whether you were a civilian or a soldier?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. What did you say?
18 A. I said I was a civilian.
19 Q. A civilian? Why did you say that?
20 A. Because I was a civilian, because I was not a soldier,
21 because I was not captured in uniform or with a weapon.
22 Q. During your captivity in Vitez in the cinema, in the
23 veterinary station, your family, your wife, your
24 children, your mother, where were they?
25 A. At first, they were staying with our friend, our
1 neighbour, and after that, they went to stay with my
2 aunt, they stayed at her apartment.
3 Q. That was in Vitez?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Under HVO control?
6 A. Yes, under HVO control.
7 MR. NOBILO: Mr. President, I have only one more proposal,
8 that the witness just indicates where he dug trenches.
9 I am just asking whether he is protected enough when he
10 draws these places where he dug trenches, if there is
11 sufficient protection. I kindly request Witness D to
12 mark this.
13 JUDGE JORDA: Witness D, do not move. If anything has to be
14 annotated on the map, we have to return to the closed
15 session. This is your last question, Mr. Nobilo?
16 MR. NOBILO: It is my last question. If we put the map in
17 front of him so he can mark what he should mark on the
18 map and then we all put it up on the easel so we can all
19 see it.
20 JUDGE JORDA: Yes, that would be the most efficient way of
22 MR. KEHOE: If I may respond, Mr. President, it might just be
23 easier to go into closed session because I have a
24 question or two on redirect examination concerning
25 questions asked by counsel in closed session, so I would
1 ask to be going back into closed session in any event.
2 JUDGE JORDA: Then we will resume the closed hearing, which
3 in fact might be even simpler. In fact this will make
4 the witness feel much safer and will allow him to get
5 up, allow the Prosecution to come closer to the easel
6 and so that is in fact the best solution. We are trying
7 to save time, but I think it is still the best
9 Witness D, feel at ease as soon as the curtains
10 have been drawn. You are being asked to get up and to
11 indicate on the map the positions that will respond to
13 (In closed session)
13 Page 2763 redacted - in closed session
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13 Page 2765 redacted - in closed session
13 Page 2766 redacted - in closed session
13 Page 2767 redacted - in closed session
13 Page 2768 redacted - in closed session
13 Page 2769 redacted - in closed session
3 (The witness withdrew)
4 JUDGE JORDA: I am asking the Registrar to put the courtroom
5 back into -- to make it open to the public again, and to
6 remove all screens, and then we will resume immediately
7 with the following witness.
8 Mr. Harmon, are you going to resume? Will you be the one
9 that is going to be following up now and bring in a new
10 witness? You have given the identity to the Defence,
11 there are no specific protective measures that you have
12 been asking for?
13 MR. HARMON: That is correct, Mr. President.
14 (In open session)
15 JUDGE JORDA: Everybody is ready? Mr. Harmon? You have
16 about 30 minutes now. I remind you that we are not
17 going to the meeting this afternoon for technical
19 MR. HARMON: Thank you, Mr. President. I would call as my
20 next witness Dr. Fuad Zeco.
21 (Witness entered court)
22 JUDGE JORDA: Mr. Zeco, do you hear me? Do you hear the
23 presiding judge speaking to you? Do you hear me in your
24 own language?
25 THE WITNESS: Yes, I can hear you well.
1 JUDGE JORDA: Can you first tell us who you are? Just tell
2 us your name.
3 THE WITNESS: My name is Fuad Zeco and my --
4 JUDGE JORDA: That is enough for the time being. It was
5 just to be sure that we know who you are. The
6 Prosecutor is going to ask additional questions about
7 your identity. Now we know who you are, we are going to
8 give you a written statement, that is the usher will,
9 which we are going to ask you to read. Perhaps you
10 could help him with his headset.
11 THE WITNESS: Just a moment, please. Yes, my headset is a
12 bit loose, so it is slipping.
13 JUDGE JORDA: Yes. You have to be comfortable. Do you feel
14 better that way? Go ahead.
15 FUAD ZECO (sworn)
16 JUDGE JORDA: Thank you. Please be seated.
17 A. Thank you.
18 JUDGE JORDA: Is the headset in place now? Take time to
19 make it right, because you are going to need it for a
21 A. Now it is fine.
22 JUDGE JORDA: You were called in by the Prosecution -- is
23 that all right? You were called in as a witness by the
25 A. Yes.
1 JUDGE JORDA: As part of a trial which is being conducted by
2 the Prosecution against General Blaskic, who is in this
3 room. You are a Prosecution witness, you will first
4 answer the Prosecutor's questions and then, as in all
5 trials, you will answer the Defence's questions, and
6 then any questions that the judges might want to ask
8 Mr.. Harmon?
9 Examined by MR.. HARMON
10 Q. Dr. Zeco, could you please spell your last name for the
12 A. Z-E-C-O.
13 Q. Dr. Zeco, how old are you?
14 A. 65.
15 Q. What is your date of birth?
16 A. 6th July 1932.
17 Q. Where were you born and raised?
18 A. I was born in Breza, I went to school in Sarajevo, part
19 of it in Visoko as well, and I completed my studies in
20 Sarajevo at the School for Veterinarians.
21 Q. Dr. Zeco, are you married and do you have children?
22 A. Yes, I am. I am married, I have two daughters and
23 I have five grandchildren.
24 Q. What is your profession, sir?
25 A. I am a veterinarian, that is my profession.
1 Q. How long have you been a veterinarian?
2 A. I graduated in 1959 and I was a veterinarian all the way
3 until 16th April 1993, and I was just doing a job in my
5 Q. Dr. Zeco, when did you move to the Vitez municipality and
6 could you explain the circumstances of how you came to
7 move to that particular municipality?
8 A. After I finished my studies, I had a scholarship from
9 the Breza municipality and in 1959, I got a job at the
10 veterinary station of the Breza municipality.
11 I actually founded that station, I was the first
12 veterinarian there, so I was the director of that
13 station and I was there until 1st August 1969, when the
14 request came from the Vitez municipality that I come
15 there and that I do this work in the territory of that
16 municipality, so I did that, starting as of 1st August
18 Q. Who asked you to come to the Vitez municipality to be a
20 A. It was a request that came from the President of the
21 municipality. At that time, Ivo Taraba was the
22 President of the municipality, he invited me to an
23 interview, we had an interview, he gave me an offer and
24 I accepted the offer to take on this job, to become a
25 veterinarian for the territory of the Vitez
2 Q. Was that individual a Muslim or a Croat?
3 A. He is a Croat, he is Croatian, Mr.. Ivo Taraba.
4 Q. Dr. Zeco, could you describe your duties and
5 responsibilities as a veterinarian in the Vitez
7 A. This was the work of the control of the fodder, the
8 health of the livestock. This is the kind of job that
9 was done in a veterinary station and I was appointed a
10 director and this was my duty, to promote the livestock
11 industry and health and the control of fodder. Those
12 were the basic duties which I did in my job at that
13 particular position.
14 Q. Did your duties and responsibilities permit you to
15 travel extensively through the Vitez municipality?
16 A. My activity was related to the entire territory of the
17 Vitez municipality. However, at that point we were also
18 co-operating with Travnik, Vitez, Busovaca
19 municipalities and as a veterinarian, if necessary,
20 I would go and discharge my duties, carry out my duties
21 in those territories as well, but I only had the
22 responsibility really, in reality, for the municipality
23 of Vitez.
24 Q. Did you have a staff that worked with you while you were
25 the director of the veterinary centre?
1 A. Yes, I did, I had veterinary technician. Occasionally
2 I would have a colleague who was a veterinarian.
3 However, as I pointed out just a while ago, we did
4 co-operate, we helped out the other municipalities as
5 well, so if -- if the need arose, we would help the
6 other veterinarians in other municipalities, but it was
7 all done through the veterinary centre of where I was
8 the director, that was in Vitez.
9 Q. Dr. Zeco, where was the centre, the veterinary centre,
10 located? Was it located in Vitez?
11 A. The veterinary station was in the town of Vitez itself,
12 towards the outskirts, really. It was not in the centre
13 of the town. This was an area called Rijeka.
14 MR.. HARMON: Mr.. President, if I could have a previous
15 exhibit, it is exhibit 33 and there are two photographs
16 from that particular exhibit, 33/9 and 33/10, placed on
17 the ELMO. (Handed).
18 Dr. Zeco, can you see that image that has a small
19 number on the lower right-hand corner, PH225, and can
20 you identify what that particular building is?
21 A. This is the veterinary station of the municipality of
22 Vitez. I lived upstairs, and downstairs were the
23 offices of the veterinary station.
24 Q. All right. Could you also -- when you say you lived
25 upstairs, did you live upstairs up to a certain
1 particular point in time and then move from those
2 quarters to a different location?
3 A. Yes, when I came to the municipality of Vitez I moved in
4 there, upstairs, because those were the premises for the
5 apartment of the veterinarian there, so I lived there
6 for about ten years and then I built a house of my own
7 and then I moved into this house of my own.
8 Q. Now could we have the next image placed on the ELMO,
9 that would be PH226.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Dr. Zeco, could you identify that building? Is that also
12 another photograph, but from a different view, of the
13 veterinary station?
14 A. It is the same building, from the other side. You can
15 see the entrance to the apartment there, and also the
16 room for examining animals.
17 Q. Dr. Zeco, you said that at some point in time after you
18 moved into this particular apartment building you moved
19 out and built a house of your own, is that correct?
20 A. Yes, that is correct. I got a plot of land from the
21 municipality in the immediate vicinity of the veterinary
22 station where I built a family home, a house of my own,
23 and after it was built, I moved from the apartment to my
24 own home.
25 Q. And that home is where you raised your family, is that
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Now if I could have pre-marked exhibit 104 placed on the
4 ELMO? (Handed). Dr. Zeco, can you identify the image
5 that is on the ELMO in front of you, exhibit 104?
6 A. This is my own home, which is less than 100 metres away
7 from the veterinary station.
8 Q. This is the home you built in 1969?
9 A. I am sorry, in 1979.
10 MR.. HARMON: Your Honour, I would ask that exhibit 104 be
11 admitted into evidence.
12 JUDGE JORDA: All right.
13 MR.. HARMON: Now, your Honour, I am going to be referring to
14 an exhibit which is a large aerial image that is behind
15 Dr. Zeco. For the court's information, this image is
16 similar to other aerial images. It was provided to the
17 Prosecutor's Office pursuant to Rule 70 by the
18 United Kingdom. It is essentially, your Honour, a
19 slightly extended view of what has been previously
20 introduced as exhibit 45. It shows a portion known as
21 Rijeka and I will have the witness identify in just a
22 minute that particular portion of the exhibit.
23 Dr. Zeco, could you please turn to your left, and
24 to your lift you will see a large aerial image. What
25 I would ask you to do is please stand up and point out
1 with the pointer --
2 JUDGE JORDA: Perhaps the usher could help the witness, to
3 make sure that he can keep the headset on. He seems to
4 be having a little problem with that.
5 MR.. HARMON: Mr.. Dubuisson, is there another copy for the
6 court? Is there one provided?
7 For the record, your Honours, I have not provided
8 a copy to Defence counsel because I did not have another
9 available image, but I have let them see this and I have
10 informed them they will be provided with a copy shortly.
11 Referring to this particular exhibit, Dr. Zeco,
12 could you please point out the location of the
13 veterinary station where you worked as the director?
14 A. The veterinary station is there.
15 Q. You are holding your pointer on the end of an arrow that
16 has a number 1 attached to it, is that correct?
17 A. Yes, number 1, yes. The arrow with number 1 shows the
18 building of the veterinary station.
19 Q. Could you show on that particular exhibit the location
20 of the home that you built?
21 A. I can, over here (indicates), the arrow number 2 shows
22 my home.
23 Q. So you are referring to the number 2 and at the end of
24 the arrow is indicated the location of your home?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. All right. Thank you very much, Dr. Zeco. You can have
2 a seat again.
3 A. Thank you.
4 Q. Dr. Zeco, the area of your home you mentioned and the
5 area of the veterinary station was located in a part of
6 Vitez known as Rijeka, is that correct?
7 A. Yes, precisely, Rijeka.
8 Q. Was Rijeka a part of Vitez that was exclusively Muslim,
9 exclusively Croat or was it a mixed neighbourhood?
10 A. In the area of Rijeka, all three ethnic groups were
11 present, Serbs and Croats and Muslims. In the area of
12 Rijeka, there were predominantly Croats, a bit more than
13 a half approximately, and the rest were Muslims and
15 Q. Can you approximate the number of Muslims, the
16 percentage of Serbs, the percentage of Croats?
17 A. Approximately a bit more than 30 per cent of the total
18 population of Rijeka were Muslims, up to 10 per cent
19 were Serbs and the rest were Croats, so about
20 60 per cent were Croats in this area which is called
22 MR. HARMON: Mr.. President, it is 1.00. Does the court want
23 to continue beyond 1.00 or does the court wish to
24 conclude the session at this point?
25 JUDGE JORDA: It depends somewhat on you. We have to think
1 about the interpreters as well, because we are not
2 meeting this afternoon, but it does depend on you. You
3 are now asking questions which are establishing the
4 general framework before you get to the more relevant
5 questions, relevant in terms of what you want to
6 demonstrate. Do you have a few more questions about the
7 general framework, or is that it?
8 MR. HARMON: That is it, your Honour. In terms of the
9 neighbourhood and where Dr. Zeco lived, that concludes
10 this part of the examination.
11 JUDGE JORDA: Then we will stop. A question that has been
12 said to me by Judge Riad: how much time are you planning
13 to question this witness.
14 MR. HARMON: I believe the estimation we provided the court
15 was not to exceed two hours, your Honour.
16 JUDGE JORDA: All right. Do you have a question,
17 Mr. Dubuisson?
18 THE REGISTRAR: I would like to know whether this exhibit
19 which is on the easel is going to be filed today or are
20 you waiting?
21 JUDGE JORDA: Do you have anything else you want to say
22 about it, or do you want to wait?
23 MR. HARMON: Yes, your Honour, I do.
24 JUDGE JORDA: For the time being, the witness has identified
25 it but it is not going to be tendered as an exhibit. We
1 will meet tomorrow at 10.00. The court stands
3 (1.00 pm)
4 (Court adjourned until 10.00 am the following day)