Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 16510

1 Wednesday, 28 May 2003

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Madam Registrar, could you call the case,

6 please?

7 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. Good morning, Your Honours.

8 This is the case number IT-99-36-T, the Prosecutor versus Radoslav

9 Brdjanin.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Mr. Brdjanin, good morning to you.

11 Can you follow in a language that you can understand?

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honour. I can

13 follow in a language I understand.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Appearances for the Prosecution?

15 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, Joanna Korner assisted by Denise Gustin,

16 case manager. Good morning, Your Honours.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you both. Appearances for the

18 Defence?

19 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Good morning, Your Honours. David Cunningham

20 with Barbara Baruch, we are assisted by Vesna Anic.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you and good morning to you too. What's the

22 bad news this morning, Ms. Korner.

23 MS. KORNER: It is and it isn't. It is bad news in one sense.

24 The witness -- do Your Honours have the witness list with you?

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, yes, yes. One moment, until I dig it up. Yes.

Page 16511

1 MS. KORNER: The witness for this Friday is ill.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: That much we know.

3 MS. KORNER: And unable to travel.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: And that's Witness.

5 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Presiding Judge, please.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: That's Witness 7.

7 MS. KORNER: 7.72, I'm told.


9 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, the suggestion that we have, and it's

10 really a matter for Your Honours and the Defence, although we wanted to

11 call Mr. Sebire immediately after the Whit holiday because it meant not

12 keeping a witness here very long we can put him in.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: 7.44, you mean.

14 MS. KORNER: No, Nicolas Sebire. Does he have a number? 7.44.

15 We would be able to deal with the exhumations. If Your Honours were

16 content with that and the Defence.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: That would be Friday?

18 MS. KORNER: Yes.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: You will bring -- Mr. Sebire has to come from

20 abroad.

21 MS. KORNER: No, he's a member of the OTP.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: That's perfect. With us, it's perfect. We are here

23 available any way. So -- and if we are dealing with exhumations it

24 shouldn't be a problem with you either, I suppose.

25 MS. BARUCH: I really couldn't -- [Microphone not activated] I

Page 16512

1 must discuss that with Mr. Ackerman. If the Court is confident that it's

2 not going to be a problem, I see no reason why it would be, but I have to

3 discuss it.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly, I will give you all the time in the

5 world to do that. So let's do two things in the meantime. First alert

6 Mr. Sebire if he hasn't been alerted already to be prepared just in case.

7 Secondly, I don't have a statement from Nicolas Sebire to my knowledge. I

8 don't know, perhaps Ms. Gustin can check that for us.

9 MS. KORNER: No, you probably don't at this stage because it's a

10 sudden --

11 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't recall having seen anything for him.

12 MS. KORNER: No, Your Honour what we will do is try and make

13 arrangements that Your Honours get it today or at the latest tomorrow

14 morning.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, because it will also assist me and my

16 colleague, Judge Janu to decide whether we should put some pressure on

17 Defence or not, because if it's obvious that they need time, they require

18 time, then we will give them time.

19 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, what Mr. Sebire has done is -- he's an

20 investigator and he has simply collated all the information that we have

21 received which is still coming in, I may add, it's a never-lending saga.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: I understand.

23 MS. KORNER: The results of exhumations carried out both under the

24 aegis of the Tribunal itself or by the Bosnians and the declarations of

25 death issued by the cantonal courts. Your Honour may remember you had

Page 16513

1 some evidence about that from --

2 JUDGE AGIUS: We have had several witnesses giving details,

3 particularly the Judge from Sanski Most.

4 MS. KORNER: Yes, exactly. So but Your Honour that's the

5 situation. Your Honour, that's that problem then hopefully dealt with.

6 In respect of next Friday, the witness there cannot attend but we have

7 done a swap with the witness for Friday the 13th. They both come from

8 Bosanska Krupa.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: What do you mean? You mean that --

10 MS. KORNER: In other words, the witness for the 13th of Friday,

11 I'm sorry, I haven't got the numbers on my form.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: There are -- I suppose it's 7.102?

13 MS. KORNER: Ms. Gustin will confirm that in a moment but it's a

14 direct swap of the two Fridays, the witnesses for the two Fridays.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: In other words the one we should have had this

16 Friday --

17 MS. KORNER: No, no, Friday week, that is, the 6th of June, the

18 one who should have come on the 13th will come on the 6th.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: And 7.67 will go to the 13th? And 7.102 will go to

20 the 6th?

21 MS. KORNER: Well, I think the other way around.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: No. It should be like -- 7.67 will be shifted to

23 the 13th? And 7.102 to the 6th.

24 MS. KORNER: Yes.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: The only thing I would like you to confirm is that

Page 16514

1 these two numbers are correct, 7.67, 7.102 so that the Defence will know

2 exactly what they should be prepared for.

3 MS. KORNER: Yes.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay? Which witness to cross-examine, in other

5 words.

6 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, we will just confirm all that at the

7 break with the Defence and Your Honours.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Also what is important is that all documents that

9 need to be in the hands of the Defence, particularly with regard to 7.102,

10 because we are two weeks afar from that, are in the hands of the Defence

11 by the end of this week already early next week at the latest.

12 MS. KORNER: Yes.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: I leave it with you -- I leave that in your hands.

14 Yes?

15 MS. KORNER: And can I before I deal with Mr. Ackerman -- the

16 matters Your Honour has raised yesterday at the end of the day can I just

17 go into private session for one moment?

18 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, let's go into private session for a while.

19 [Private session]

20 (Redacted)

21 (Redacted)

22 (Redacted)

23 (Redacted)

24 (Redacted)

25 (Redacted)

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Page 16516

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8 (Redacted)

9 (Redacted)

10 (Redacted)

11 (Redacted)

12 (Redacted)

13 [Open session]

14 JUDGE AGIUS: And --

15 MS. KORNER: Your Honour raised yesterday Mr. Ackerman's reply to

16 the motion in respect of --

17 JUDGE AGIUS: I raised it in order to avoid you having to file a

18 further response to the response. We will deal with it orally and then my

19 legal secretary who is here present should be -- would be in a position to

20 move ahead once I have directed her where to go.

21 MS. KORNER: Thank you. Your Honour, this is the motion in

22 respect of the Rule 92 witnesses for Teslic.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: That's the documents.

24 MS. KORNER: Yes, I'll come on to the documents. If Your Honours

25 have got it there, paragraph 2 with regard to witnesses, he's made an

Page 16517

1 error in the number it should be 7.148, not 7.48. 7.149 and 7.115. All

2 these witnesses are victims of rape. It was originally intended to call

3 7.115 and have the other two as cumulative of that witness. Because of

4 the indications that we've had from Your Honours that you really would

5 wish us if at all possible to finish the case by the adjournment in

6 August, which is the 1st of August, we took a decision that as there has

7 been no cross-examination at all effectively of any of the people who said

8 that they were the victims of rape, that we would seek to Rule 92 them. I

9 have no idea what Rule 93 bis is because it doesn't exist. And therefore

10 I'm assuming that Mr. Ackerman, it's a typing error again, it should be 92

11 bis and he's saying that although they are not cumulative of a live

12 witness he actually has no objection and in each case we do have the Rule

13 92 attestations. So if that's right, Your Honour, I would invite Your

14 Honour that these may be tendered if Mr. Ackerman has no objection in any

15 event.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: In actual fact, that's what he says also in

17 paragraph 3.

18 MS. KORNER: Yes.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: But I have no authority to speak for him so perhaps

20 you will make a note of it and --

21 MS. BARUCH: I've already discussed it with him and he does not

22 have an objection for it being 92 bis.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you. So that answers the only

24 problem that I had.

25 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, then the --

Page 16518

1 JUDGE AGIUS: And then the documents.

2 MS. KORNER: The documents. I'm not sure what Your Honour wanted

3 me to deal with.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Well, I mean, I am trying to avoid you having to

5 file a response to this objection, if you can deal with it orally here and

6 now, on your two feet.

7 MS. KORNER: I can. Your Honour, I'm going to say the same thing

8 I have said over and over and over again.


10 MS. KORNER: This is not -- none of these objections, we suggest,

11 really raise anything -- with one exception. I had a look at the list and

12 I think there is another one of those documents that we can't trace a

13 source for. If Your Honour just waits a moment while I -- in actual fact,

14 funnily enough, it's not one that's objected to by Mr. Ackerman. Your

15 Honour, it's P1738. It's the same source, if you see what I mean, it's

16 the same gentleman who collected the other four documents that were in the

17 Prnjavor binder -- no, Petrovac binder, where we couldn't trace from the

18 documentation where he got them from. Mr. Inayat is still trying to chase

19 it up but it's actually quite difficult because it was so long ago that

20 this gentleman was dealing with matters that in the absence of having

21 documentation to show where it comes from, it's quite difficult but

22 Mr. Inayat is seeing if he can trace it.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.

24 MS. KORNER: But, Your Honour, in respect of the other objections,

25 Your Honour, we would invite Your Honour to admit the whole of the Teslic

Page 16519

1 binder of documents, Mr. Ackerman's objections notwithstanding.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Mrs. Baruch, we will not hand down a

3 written decision on this. We will just give an oral decision.

4 MS. BARUCH: May I just understand? Because I'm looking at a

5 document that was the objection, there were objections, clear objections,

6 to three documents: P1937, a press report that came off of Croatian

7 Radio; P1940, which although it says it had no signature, there was a

8 signature but there was no stamp, that came from AID; and P1950, again a

9 press report and I believe that's also from Croatian Radio. Those are the

10 three documents I believe that Mr. Ackerman actually objected to, and then

11 asked the Court to examine many of the other documents in depth. That's

12 what we are talking about.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. Now, until now, as of now, I haven't seen

14 actually these three documents that are being objected to. I will see

15 them in the course of the day when they are made available to me.

16 MS. KORNER: Does Your Honour not have the Teslic binder? Because

17 I'm going to be using it.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: No, I think we have the Teslic binder but I haven't

19 had them pulled out and shown to me and this is the problem. Yesterday I

20 was here until 7.30. After the sitting, there was a meeting of Trial

21 Chamber II so there was little time after that to go and examine any

22 documents, Ms. Korner, so after ten hours straight here.

23 I'll see, together with Judge Janu, these three documents and we

24 will reach a decision probably later on today, okay? Okay. Probably

25 later on today. In the meantime Inneke, please, liaise with Rene so that

Page 16520

1 they are on my desk during the first break.

2 So ready?

3 MS. KORNER: No, Your Honours, one last piece of news. I see

4 Mrs. Baruch is --

5 MS. BARUCH: No, no, I'm sorry.

6 MS. KORNER: Mr. Hidic, after he'd finished testifying I spoke to

7 him just to thank him.

8 MS. BARUCH: Excuse me a protected witness? No, sorry.

9 MS. KORNER: I spoke to him just to thank him for coming to the

10 Court. He then informed me that back at his hotel, he had other

11 documents. I then made arrangements for an investigator and an

12 interpreter to go over to the hotel and collect from him any documents

13 that were relevant to any of these matters. Some of them were. Your

14 Honour, I can't say anything other than we are very sorry. We didn't

15 appreciate -- he was asked to bring the documents that you remember we had

16 to get translated overnight, and it may be that we didn't make ourselves

17 clear enough that we didn't just mean the documents that supported his

18 notebook but any other documents that he might have. We have arranged

19 that they will be -- we hope the B/C/S versions will be given, disclosed

20 today. We are making -- we hope so. We just have to get it together. We

21 are trying to make arrangements again for a rather quicker translation

22 than can be done by CLSS so that they will be available at the end of the

23 week because there is another witness from the same municipality,

24 Petrovac, who will be here on Monday. Your Honour, of course, if there

25 are matters that the Defence wish to cross-examine about, then we will

Page 16521












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Page 16522

1 make arrangements if necessary though we hope it won't be necessary

2 because of the expense, for Mr. Hidic to return.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Mrs. Baruch? Or Mr. Cunningham?

4 MR. CUNNINGHAM: Judge, I won't know if there is additional

5 cross-examination required until I see the documents.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. The position as I see it from a legal point

7 of view, from a procedural point of view, ought to be the following:

8 First of all, I reserve for the Defence the right, after having perused

9 these documents, to ask for Mr. Hidic to be brought over for any possible

10 cross-examination. And that would also mean that the Prosecution would be

11 entitled to put questions to him as well. In the meantime, however, I

12 would require that simultaneous with the filing of these documents,

13 whoever received them or picked them up from Mr. Hidic, to be brought

14 forward and confirm that on oath.

15 MS. KORNER: He's made a statement, Your Honour. We appreciated

16 what might happen and so the investigator has made a statement as to the

17 events and the documents that he took.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. So I have made that clear.

19 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I wasn't proposing to file, unless Your

20 Honour wants it filed. I was proposing to disclose.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Filing is a matter of saying. Before being made use

22 of.

23 MS. KORNER: All right.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Before being tendered in evidence as exhibits,

25 that's important, because, I mean, we need to establish the origin. It's

Page 16523

1 not that I doubt your word. Don't take me -- it's a formality that

2 probably we need to follow.

3 MS. KORNER: I think I did ask that in this case, we keep, just

4 for the time being, the originals which are, I'm told, very similar to the

5 ones he produced himself in court.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Korner, incidentally, Nicolas Sebire on Friday,

7 how long do you expect him to be in the witness stand?

8 MS. KORNER: I don't really know. It depends on how much, A, the

9 Defence want to ask him about his collation of documents, and B, there are

10 a number of schedules that he's going to be producing. I would have

11 thought a bit like Mr. Kaiser, that it should be possible to finish him

12 within the one day but I wouldn't like to bet on that.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: If you have difficulties particularly,

14 Mr. Cunningham and Mrs. Baruch, we are talking of schedules and details

15 which you may not be familiar with and which you need to go through

16 considering that this witness is here available at any time, we could

17 actually do the in-chief on Friday and reserve the cross-examination for

18 you for some later point in time, if you prefer it. If you think you

19 are -- you will be in a position to conclude also with the

20 cross-examination on Friday, then we conclude it on Friday.

21 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, we are perfectly content with that

22 because, as I say, we had actually originally arranged for him to testify

23 on the Tuesday after the bank -- the Whitsun holiday, so we could reserve

24 cross-examination for them which would help maybe.

25 MR. CUNNINGHAM: All we could ask is an opportunity to confer with

Page 16524

1 Mr. Ackerman and report back after the break.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, yes, yes. We are flexible, Mr. Cunningham, so

3 you don't have to worry on that. So shall we bring in the witness?

4 MS. KORNER: Yes, Your Honour.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: First of all, did you get the message that next week

6 we will be working in the morning and not in the afternoon? We have

7 shifted all the sittings from the afternoon to the morning.

8 MS. KORNER: Yes, I didn't, Your Honour, but I imagine so because

9 I know how few cases are going to be sitting next week.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thanks.

11 MS. KORNER: And will it be in this Court?

12 JUDGE AGIUS: That much I can't tell you.

13 MS. KORNER: I thought they were finishing --

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Simic had the last sitting yesterday, I think. No?

15 In any case, it's an advantage even for Mr. Ackerman himself to sit in the

16 morning rather than stay here until 7.00 in the evening.

17 All right. Witness? Does he enjoy any protective --

18 MS. KORNER: No, he doesn't, Your Honour. Did Your Honour get --

19 I understand that --

20 JUDGE AGIUS: The briefing?

21 MS. KORNER: The extra statements --


23 MS. KORNER: -- simply where he'd made corrections.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. I simply don't -- I got them and they are

25 here.

Page 16525

1 [The witness entered court]

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Welcome to this Tribunal. You are about to give

5 evidence and testimony. Before you do so, our rules require that you

6 enter a solemn declaration, which is equivalent to an oath, that in the

7 course of your testimony, you will be speaking the truth, the whole truth

8 and nothing but the truth, a formula with which I am sure you are

9 familiar, and I suggest you take in your hand the text of the solemn

10 declaration and go ahead by reading it aloud, and that will be your solemn

11 undertaking with us.

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

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


15 [Witness answered through Interpreter]

16 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. You may sit down. Now, what's going

17 to happen, Mr. Osmanovic, is that you are going to be asked a series of

18 questions by Ms. Korner, who is lead counsel for the Prosecution in this

19 case, a case which has been instituted against Radoslav Brdjanin, and she

20 will then be followed by the Defence team for Mr. Brdjanin on

21 cross-examination. It may well be that you will not finish your testimony

22 today. In other words, that you will -- we may have to continue tomorrow.

23 We will try to do our best to have you finish your testimony tomorrow, but

24 I can't promise that. Very much depends on how you answer the questions.

25 Many witnesses have the habit of giving us more information than they are

Page 16526

1 asked for. So my suggestion to you is to answer the question, the whole

2 question, and nothing but the question, and I can assure you that if you

3 do that, you will leave this Tribunal earlier than you think.

4 So Ms. Korner, he is in your hands.

5 Examined by Ms. Korner:

6 Q. Sir, could you be very kind and give us your name.

7 A. Adil Osmanovic.

8 Q. And were you born on the 24th of July, 1963?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And are you a Bosniak by nationality?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Are you presently president of the regional SDA board for Northern

13 Bosnia?

14 A. No.

15 Q. But are you presently, therefore, a vice-president of the

16 Republika Srpska Assembly?

17 A. Not the assembly, but Republika Srpska.

18 Q. I'm sorry, which shows the folly of trying to lead.

19 Were you, however, when your statement was taken in 2000, the

20 president of the regional SDA board?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. And when did you become the vice-president of Republika Srpska?

23 A. In the last general elections, in October 2002.

24 Q. Up until May of 1992, from the time of the multi-party elections,

25 were you a member of the SDA in Teslic?

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Page 16528

1 A. Yes, I was.

2 Q. All right. If I can deal briefly with your background, I think

3 that you attended, after your secondary education in Sarajevo, an arts and

4 language facility in Pristina between 1984 and 1990.

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. With a two-year break for your JNA military service?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. And after graduating for Pristina, did you go to a village called

9 Hrankovic in the Teslic municipality where you performed religious

10 services as an imam at the mosque there?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And did you hold that position between January, 1990 and the 1st

13 of April, 1991?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. And then after the multi-party elections, in April of 1991, did

16 you -- were you appointed to the position of secretary to the municipal

17 assembly for the Teslic municipality?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. I want to ask you first of all, please, a little bit about Teslic

20 and then deal with your position.

21 Could you have a look, please, at the census document for 1991?

22 It's Exhibit P60.

23 And if you can find Teslic, which, I think, you will find on the

24 last page but one.

25 A. Yes, I've found it.

Page 16529

1 Q. Does that show that in 1991, the total population of Teslic was

2 just under 60.000 people, 59.854?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Of the Croats were some 9.525, forming 15.9 per cent. The Muslims

5 12.802, 21 per cent, and then the Serbs, 32.962, 55.1 per cent. And then

6 a few people who declared themselves Yugoslavs or others. So Teslic -- in

7 Teslic there was an overall majority of Serbs; is that correct?

8 A. Yes, that is correct.

9 Q. Now, I think we need to look now please at a map of Bosnia to

10 identify the whereabouts of Teslic rather than the ARK map.

11 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, this is a new map.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Sorry, Ms. Korner, let me ask him a question. I

13 notice from this table that you were just looking at, that over the space

14 of -- a period of 20 years, that's from 1971 to 1991, the population, the

15 Serb component of the population, was on the decline, it was 62 per

16 cent -- 62 per cent in 1971, at 32.700, it went up to 35.000 in 1981,

17 dropped back to 32, which is equivalent to 55 per cent, as against the 62

18 per cent that it was 20 years earlier. Can you fathom a reason for this?

19 Do you have an idea why this could be so? Why the Serb population was

20 diminishing in a municipality which was predominantly Serb?

21 MS. BARUCH: Your Honour, I believe that this witness was not in

22 that town at that time.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah, but perhaps he knows. Let's see whether he

24 can give us an answer.

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can say that during the 1971

Page 16530

1 census period, a significant number of Muslims declared themselves

2 differently. They didn't declare themselves as Muslims, and also a

3 significant number of Serbs worked in Vojvodina and in Serbia, so there

4 was a migration of population within the then Socialist Federative

5 Republic of Yugoslavia.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: That's enough for the time being. Yes. Ms. Korner,

7 please go ahead.

8 MS. KORNER: Thank you.

9 Q. That's all we need to do with that document. Could you be handed

10 now, please, a map of the whole of Bosnia? There are copies available for

11 Your Honours because I don't think we've used this one before. And if we

12 could put it up on the ELMO? Sir, you'll be able to see it on the screen

13 in front of you. Except it's upside down, usher. All right.

14 Can we see on that map -- I don't know whether we can focus a

15 little bit better on it, yeah, we need -- usher if you could pull -- we

16 need the left hand bit to come -- no, sorry, the other way, and down, no,

17 down. Thank you. That's great.

18 We can see there, if we see Doboj at the right-hand side of the

19 screen, we can see Teslic just below that as we are looking at it, to the

20 left, and then the road to Banja Luka, and we can see, I think, that going

21 up from Doboj to Derventa and then we see the Croatian border, do we?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. All right. Roughly -- I'm sorry, you've taken Teslic off. The

24 focus -- sorry, the focus is too -- I want Teslic. Thanks. Stop, that's

25 it. Roughly how far was Teslic from the border of Croatia that we can

Page 16531

1 see, Bosanski Brod and up there?

2 A. Around 70 kilometres.

3 Q. And just for the purposes of this -- can we focus on the left-hand

4 side of the map as we look at it? Thank you.

5 MS. KORNER: Your Honours, we didn't have this map when the

6 Petrovac witness was here but Your Honours will see rather more clearly

7 than with the ARK map Petrovac to the left there and then we can see down

8 the side of that Drvar and Knin is just over -- can we pull the map

9 slightly to the right? No. Can we see it? No. We can see Bihac at the

10 top. Never mind. Anyhow, that's what I wanted to do. Your Honours have

11 the map in any event.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. No problem.

13 MS. KORNER: Yes, thank you. Your Honour, that will be 1956,

14 please. We've jumped some numbers because of the Rule 92 statements.

15 Q. Now, next, can I ask you to look at a map that deals with the

16 ethnicity, the nationality of the various areas?

17 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, we haven't at the moment got any other

18 copies, they are going to be brought down so perhaps I can put it on the

19 ELMO. Thank you.

20 Q. We can see there -- and I think you've had a chance to look at it,

21 and can you confirm that the villages shown in green had a Muslim majority

22 within those villages and areas? And would you agree that that's pretty

23 accurate?

24 A. Yes. The green colour indeed shows those areas where Muslims were

25 a majority.

Page 16532


2 MS. KORNER: In -- yes.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: What time are we talking about?


5 Q. In 1992, is this where they were a majority?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. We can see Teslic town itself is marked as largely Serb but there

8 is a particular area called Stenjak where there were Muslims; is that

9 accurate?

10 A. Yes, that is accurate.

11 Q. And did you yourself live in the Stenjak area?

12 A. Yes. Up to 1992, I lived in Stenjak. That was up to the end of

13 May, 1992.

14 Q. Can we just jump ahead to the present time, 2003? Would that map

15 be an accurate description of the way the ethnicities were split? Are

16 Gornji Rankovic, Gornji Teslic, places like that, are they still a Muslim

17 majority?

18 A. No. They are not.

19 Q. We don't have any accurate figures but roughly how many Muslims

20 are living presently in Teslic?

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Teslic the municipality?

22 MS. KORNER: The municipality.

23 Q. If you can answer the question. If you can't, say so.

24 A. I can't give you a precise number, but I can give you a rough

25 estimate because I was until recently a deputy in the Municipal Assembly

Page 16533












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Page 16534

1 of Teslic, so the number would be between 4 and a half and 5.000 Bosniaks

2 who currently reside in Teslic.

3 Q. Yes. Thank you. That's all I want to ask you about that map.

4 And then that would be P1957, please.

5 And finally, I want you to look at a map with some photographs.

6 Are you able, on the left-hand -- can we move the thing so we can

7 see the photographs on the left of the -- thank you. Are you able to

8 identify photograph number 3 on that map? Yeah, thank you.

9 A. On that photograph, you can see clearly the building which housed

10 the political and social associations which made part of the Municipal

11 Assembly of Teslic up to June, 1992. On the left-hand side, but you can't

12 see it on this photo is the public security station, the police station.

13 Q. You say the political parties. Did all the political parties have

14 their offices in this one building? Political associations?

15 A. After the general elections which took place in November, 1992,

16 when the administration in Teslic was founded, all the political parties

17 which had their seats in the municipal assembly had their offices in this

18 room. That meant the SDA, the SDS and the HDZ, and then existing the

19 Socialist Democratic Alliance, the Alliance of Reformists and so on and so

20 forth.

21 Q. It was translated 1992. Did you mean to say 1992? Don't worry,

22 Ms. Baruch, I can see these things myself.

23 A. No. After the general elections in 1990.

24 Q. Yeah.

25 A. Those were the first elections that ever took place in the former

Page 16535

1 Yugoslavia. That is the multi-party elections when the administration was

2 established in Teslic, then all the political parties got room for offices

3 in this building and they kept those offices up to mid-May or late May,

4 1992.

5 Q. All right. And the only other photograph, could you look at,

6 please, photograph number 5, which is on the right-hand side? Can you

7 tell us what that is?

8 A. This building housed the Territorial Defence staff and the

9 Secretariat for People's Defence.

10 Q. And where was the municipal building? Can we see that in any of

11 the photographs?

12 A. The municipal building -- you can't see it on this photo but it

13 was not far from this building.

14 Q. From the TO building?

15 A. Yes. Not far from the Territorial Defence staff building.

16 Q. All right. Yes. Thank you.

17 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, that will then become P1959.

18 Q. Now, can we go back to your job in the municipal assembly? You

19 were appointed as the secretary of the municipal assembly. After the

20 election, did the -- was the SDS in control approximately of 48 per cent

21 of the assembly? In other words, they had 48 per cent of the seats?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. And so did they hold the key positions in the assembly, namely the

24 president of the municipal assembly?

25 A. Yes. The president and -- of the assembly and the president of

Page 16536

1 the executive board came from their ranks.

2 Q. And was the president of the assembly a gentleman named Nikola

3 Peresic?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. And the president of the executive board Milorad Markovic?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And did the SDS, i.e., the Serbs, also have charge of the

8 Territorial Defence unit, the commander being a gentleman named Cedo

9 Grbic?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. And was the chief of police also a Serb?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And was that a gentleman named Dusan Kuzmanovic?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. I think that the SDA had 16 per cent of the seats, and did they

16 hold the following positions: The vice-president of the executive board,

17 who was a Mr. Mahalbasic?

18 A. Yes, Ferid Mahalbasic.

19 Q. And also the secretary to the Secretariat of the People's Defence?

20 Was that a gentleman named Mensur Degirmendzic? You tell us his name.

21 A. Yes, Mensur Degirmendzic.

22 Q. And yourself as secretary to the assembly. And then finally, the

23 HDZ, the Croatian party, did that have 10 per cent of the seats and they

24 held a few positions, though not particularly high ones?

25 A. Yes.

Page 16537

1 Q. Now, I want to ask you, please, a little bit about first of all

2 your position as secretary and your duties. What were the duties of the

3 secretary to the assembly?

4 A. The secretary to the assembly had to look after the legality of

5 the work of the municipal assembly. He was also the first assistant to

6 the president of the assembly when it came to preparing the upcoming

7 sessions of the assembly. All the documents, all the materials, that were

8 to be discussed by the municipal assembly would be prepared by the various

9 heads of the Secretariats, and then they would forward them to the

10 secretary to the assembly, at which stage the secretary, together with the

11 president of the municipal assembly, would prepare the agenda of the

12 upcoming session of the assembly and that would be the final preparation

13 for the upcoming session of the assembly. So that would be in a nutshell

14 what the role of the secretary was, and that is exactly what I did in

15 Teslic.

16 Q. And were your duties actually defined by law, by the Statute of

17 the municipality?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Now, the preparation of the agenda which you did with the

20 president of the assembly, was that an important matter?

21 A. Yes, it was.

22 Q. And why was that?

23 A. First of all, according to the statute and the book of rules that

24 governed the work of the assembly, the president was in charge of

25 proposing an agenda to the municipal assembly, so he was authorised by the

Page 16538

1 statute to propose the agenda, and the topics to be discussed by the

2 deputies largely depended on the decision of the president, and hence all

3 the decisions that were to be made by the assembly depend on the

4 president. Certainly the last say on that was by the assembly but the

5 proposal was up to the president.

6 Q. All right. What would have to happen if the deputies to the

7 assembly wanted to alter the agenda in some way?

8 A. Before the session of the assembly, the president would put

9 forward the agenda for discussion and every deputy was in the position to

10 either remove certain items from the agenda or alternatively, to propose

11 some new items to be added to the agenda, in providing that the relevant

12 Secretariat had enough time to prepare the required materials for the

13 discussion.

14 Q. And would there have to be a vote in the assembly as to whether or

15 not a particular item would be added to the agenda?

16 A. Yes. The first vote was on those proposals, and if those

17 proposals received a qualified majority, then they would be added to the

18 finalised agenda for that session.

19 Q. So the president could set the agenda himself without any vote,

20 but if somebody wanted something added, there would have to be a vote?

21 A. Exactly.

22 Q. Now, I want to jump forward for a moment to the time after you'd

23 left Teslic and you were in Tesanj and were placed in charge of a Crisis

24 Staff that was set up, or War Presidency, I should say, in exile.

25 Appreciating that you had no -- nothing to control, as it were,

Page 16539












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Page 16540

1 because you were in exile, but would the same procedures about the setting

2 of the agenda by the president of the Crisis Staff in consultation with

3 his secretary, be followed?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. All right. Now, once the agenda was set and matters were

6 discussed, if a decision had to be made, how would that decision be taken?

7 A. Could you please repeat your question?

8 Q. I'm returning to the assembly. You've told us about the agenda,

9 the items on the agenda. If there had to be a decision made, for example

10 as to the distribution of oil, how would that decision be arrived at in

11 the assembly?

12 A. If a decision were to be adopted, if it would really be on the

13 agenda, and if this kind of decision were adopted by a parliamentary

14 majority, then it would enter into force.

15 Q. Sorry, it's the actual mechanics. You say a parliamentary

16 majority. Would there be a vote?

17 A. Yes. Yes, a vote.

18 Q. And if the majority decided either in favour or against, was that

19 then a binding decision? Or could the --

20 A. Yes, yes. That decision is binding. If it is passed by a

21 qualified majority in the assembly, the kind of majority required to pass

22 a decision.

23 Q. Did the president of the assembly have any power to overrule a

24 decision made by the members of the assembly?

25 A. If, during the actual vote, the president were to vote against a

Page 16541

1 draft decision, and if the parliamentary majority were to be in favour of

2 that decision, it is the duty of the president to see that the decision is

3 implemented nevertheless, even if he were against it.

4 Q. And once a decision was taken, did it have to be signed by the

5 president, if he was present, before it could become law?

6 A. Yes. If the president presides over the assembly, it is his duty

7 to sign all the decisions that are passed by the assembly, and then these

8 decisions are published in the Official Gazette of the assembly of the

9 municipality.

10 Q. And would they come into effect, the decisions, before they were

11 published in the Official Gazette?

12 A. No.

13 Q. So it was only the publication in the gazette, was it, that gave

14 those decisions the force of law, effectively that what was decided could

15 take place?

16 A. Yes. At the end of every decision, it says that it shall enter

17 into force on its date of publication in the Official Gazette of the

18 municipality, or at the end of some other decisions it may say that they

19 shall enter into force within a certain time period, within 30 days or 60

20 days but they have to be published in the Official Gazette.

21 Q. All right. Supposing the president was absent from an assembly

22 meeting, was anybody else authorised to sign these decisions in his

23 absence?

24 A. Decisions that are passed by the assembly are signed by the person

25 who had chaired the assembly meeting. If the president was not in a

Page 16542

1 position to chair the actual meeting, if he were replaced by the

2 vice-president of the assembly, then it would be the vice-president who

3 would sign the decision concerned.

4 Q. Now, finally I want to ask you briefly, please, about the

5 executive council of the assembly. What was its function?

6 A. In the setup of the municipalities as they existed then, we also

7 had an executive board which could be called a local government or a

8 municipal government. The executive board was in charge of preparing

9 bills that were to become laws. Then these bills would be submitted to

10 the president in order for them to appear on the agenda. The executive

11 board consisted of secretaries of the Secretariats. Then there were two

12 people from the outside so to speak, volunteers, who covered specific

13 areas like the economy, for instance. The executive board as the word

14 itself says, is an executive body. It is in charge of implementing the

15 decisions that were adopted by the assembly.

16 Q. Did it report to the assembly?

17 A. Yes. They are appointed by the assembly and the assembly possibly

18 relieves them of their duties as well.

19 Q. Can we turn to your relationship with Mr. Peresic, who was the

20 president of the assembly? Did you have -- what sort of a working

21 relationship did you have with him?

22 A. After the establishment of the assembly and the executive

23 government in Teslic, Mr. Peresic, the president of the assembly, and I

24 had rather good and professional relations, until the beginning of April,

25 1992.

Page 16543

1 Q. You've told us that the president had to abide by the vote that

2 was taken by the deputies, whether he agreed with it or not. In the case

3 of Mr. Peresic, was he able in any way to affect decisions that were

4 taken?

5 A. In the assembly?

6 Q. In the assembly.

7 A. Well, the president was the person who would propose the agenda

8 for the meeting, so then he would have the -- he should have the political

9 wisdom, if I can put it that way, not to put anything on the agenda that

10 would not receive adequate support or rather majority support.

11 Q. Supposing -- and I'm dealing specifically with Mr. Peresic now --

12 a decision was taken that he didn't like, was he able to do anything about

13 it, if not directly, indirectly?

14 A. If we were to abide by the statute and legal enactments passed by

15 the Municipal Assembly of Teslic, the president should not do anything

16 against a decision that had been adopted by the assembly.

17 Q. I understand that. But what I'm asking is even if legally he had

18 to abide by it, in reality, was he able to in some way affect a decision

19 that had already been taken?

20 A. Well, at given points in time, he certainly could, as the

21 president, and as the person who exercises authority among the secretaries

22 of the Secretariats of the municipality.

23 Q. And how would he do that?

24 A. I cannot say that I have any information to that effect, that he

25 had actually done such things, but as president he could call in the

Page 16544

1 secretaries of the Secretariats and he could say that even if a decision

2 were adopted, it would not have to be dealt with that seriously and it

3 wouldn't have to be implemented to the letter. That would be sufficient

4 for having the people who were supposed to carry out the decision have

5 certain reservations about it.

6 Q. All right. Now, generally speaking, what were relationships like

7 between the different nationalities up until the war in Croatia started?

8 A. Well, in the town of Teslic itself, in the municipality of Teslic,

9 after the elections, the first democratic elections, in November 1990,

10 when an entire system had been replaced, the communist system, that is,

11 there was great delight among the citizens. Interethnic relations in

12 Teslic, among all the ethnic groups, were indeed at a rather high level.

13 That's the kind of atmosphere that prevailed in the assembly of the

14 municipality of Teslic too.

15 Q. Were there -- had intermarriages between the nationalities, the

16 ethnicities, taken place?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. And in Teslic town itself, we've seen that Stenjak, you told us,

19 where you lived, was a suburb, I think of the town and was a Muslim area.

20 What about other areas? Were they segregated or mixed?

21 A. The villages around Teslic were rather mono-ethnic but the town

22 itself was truly multi-ethnic. Like all -- like in all towns in Bosnia,

23 there were apartment buildings and members of different ethnic groups were

24 neighbours within these buildings. They had apartments right next to each

25 other.

Page 16545












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Page 16546

1 Q. Now, I want to move, then, please, to the events after the war in

2 Croatia began. When there was the call for mobilisation, did the Bosniaks

3 or Muslims respond to the call?

4 A. No.

5 Q. Did that affect the relationships?

6 A. Well, to a large degree, yes.

7 Q. And in what way?

8 A. Because Bosniaks and Croats did not respond to the mobilisation

9 call-up because they were afraid that they would be sent to the front in

10 Croatia.

11 Q. And how did -- did the Serbs respond to the mobilisation order?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And how did that affect the way that the Serbs treated the Croat

14 and Muslim population in Teslic, in the municipality?

15 A. Well, a large number -- or rather there were quite a few Serbs who

16 were volunteers, who took part in the war in Croatia, who were there at

17 the front line, but then a large number were mobilised as well. A

18 considerable number of Serbs from Teslic were killed in the battlefields

19 in Croatia. All of this led to tensions in the relations between Serbs on

20 the one hand and Bosniaks and Croats on the other hand. Also many

21 soldiers who were returning from the front line and who had experienced

22 everything that they had experienced there, bloodshed, suffering, et

23 cetera, all of that certainly did affect their relationship with the

24 Bosniak and Croat population in Teslic.

25 Q. I want to look, please, at the political alignment of where Teslic

Page 16547

1 was. We can see that Teslic was close to Doboj and certainly closer to

2 Doboj than to Banja Luka. Was there a link between Teslic and Doboj?

3 A. There was always a link between Teslic and Doboj, because these

4 are two neighbouring towns relatively speaking.

5 Q. In terms of the political area, in terms of finance and whatever,

6 was Teslic aligned to Doboj or Banja Luka?

7 A. As I have already said, Teslic was always aligned to Doboj in

8 terms of financial flows, and in terms of health care. People were sent

9 for medical treatment to Doboj, to the hospital in Doboj, from the health

10 centre in Teslic.

11 Q. During 1991, was there ever a proposal made that Teslic should be

12 aligned to Banja Luka?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. By whom was that proposal made?

15 A. At the regular session of the assembly, the president of the

16 assembly acted in a rather unusual manner and just before the agenda was

17 adopted, he suggested that the agenda should include the following, namely

18 that the municipality of Teslic should be annexed to the Banja Luka

19 region. Then the assemblymen started debating the issue. All the

20 assemblymen from the ranks of other political parties except for the

21 assemblymen coming from the Serb Democratic Party, were opposed to this,

22 and then the president withdrew this proposal.

23 Q. Why was there opposition from all parties save the SDS?

24 A. Because there was not a single valid argument for Teslic being

25 annexed to Banja Luka.

Page 16548

1 Q. Did the -- did Mr. Peresic explain why he and the other members of

2 the SDS wished to join the Banja Luka region?

3 A. The president then presented the following argumentation: That

4 the Banja Luka region is stronger economically and that in that context,

5 the municipality of Teslic would fare better. That's what he said

6 publicly. In the conversation that I had with him, this was a tete-a-tete

7 conversation, he said that they were safer there in the region of Banja

8 Luka.

9 Q. Did he explain what he meant by safer?

10 A. Well, in that area, in the broader area of the Banja Luka region,

11 the SDS was in government, that is to say around the region, and therefore

12 it was better for them than Doboj.

13 Q. What was Doboj like, then, as an area, in the sense of who

14 controlled it, which party?

15 A. Well, from Teslic to -- between Teslic and Doboj, there was the

16 municipality of Tesanj and the SDA was in government there. The

17 municipality of Gracanica is right next to Doboj, again the Party of

18 Democratic Action was in power there and in Doboj itself the SDA and the

19 SDS were more or less equally in control. The president of the municipal

20 assembly in Doboj was from the SDA.

21 Q. All right. And finally on this topic, can you remember roughly

22 when this proposal was made by Mr. Peresic?

23 A. It was sometime in the second half of 1991.

24 Q. Had you heard at all of something called the association of

25 Bosnian Krajina municipalities? I think I'm mixing it slightly but

Page 16549

1 something like that.

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Was that in existence at the time that Mr. Peresic made the

4 proposal?

5 A. I'm not sure.

6 Q. All right.

7 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, I'm going to move to a new topic so

8 perhaps that would be --

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner. We will have a 25-minute

10 break so that means resuming at roughly 5 to 11.00. Thank you.

11 --- Recess taken at 10.28 a.m.

12 --- On resuming at 10.59 a.m.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Please proceed, Ms. Korner.


15 Q. Now, sir, we were talking about the attempt that was made to join

16 the Banja Luka region. At around this time, did you notice any change in

17 your relationship with your -- or rather your dealings professionally with

18 Mr. Peresic?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. What was the change?

21 A. Up to then, we had regular meetings, we had regular contacts, and

22 exchanges of views and opinions. We cooperated in preparing the upcoming

23 sessions of the assembly. After that period, however, I noticed that the

24 relationship between me and the president of the assembly was no longer at

25 a professional level. I also noticed that he was prone to organise

Page 16550

1 meetings with the secretaries of Secretariats only, and only those who

2 were Serbs. His contacts with the chief of the Public Security Station of

3 Teslic were also more frequent than before.

4 Q. Did you discover about meetings he was holding with other

5 presidents of municipalities?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. From whom did you get this information?

8 A. I received this information regarding the presidents of municipal

9 assemblies who were Serbs holding meetings on the territories of

10 particular municipalities. I received this information from many friends

11 and the most striking information to that effect was from the secretary

12 for People's Defence, Mr. Mensur Degirmendzic, who had received a fax that

13 was addressed to his office. In that fax, a meeting of the Serbian

14 presidents of municipal assemblies was called and, by mistake, it reached

15 his office rather than some other office.

16 Q. I want to then move through the remainder of the events of 1991,

17 and I don't think there is any dispute about the fact that in late August,

18 early September, the JNA took over the records and files of the military

19 reservists from the Secretariat of the People's Defence. What was the

20 importance of that, as far as Teslic was concerned?

21 A. In late August or early September, officers of the JNA arrived in

22 Teslic. Their task was to take over all the records from the Secretariat

23 of People's Defence and place them under their control. The importance of

24 those records lies primarily in the fact that those records contained all

25 the data, all the particulars, of all the reserve officers and the

Page 16551












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Page 16552

1 establishment of all the units. If one has these records, then one can

2 carry out a mobilisation within the space of 24 hours and end up with all

3 the exact establishment of all the units along the chain of command.

4 Q. Now, was the matter of the taking over of these records by the JNA

5 discussed in the assembly?

6 A. What surprised me and many others was the fact that we never

7 carried out any sort of discussion about this problem at any of the

8 sessions of the Municipal Assembly of Teslic, although everybody was aware

9 of the fact that civilians in Teslic opposed to the JNA taking over those

10 records. There was a rally which almost escalated into an incident.

11 However, this was never discussed at any of the sessions of the Municipal

12 Assembly of Teslic.

13 Q. But did you discuss the matter personally with Mr. Peresic?

14 A. Yes, I did.

15 Q. And what did he tell you about this?

16 A. I told him that such a move on the part of the JNA is something

17 that I could not understand and that I could not accept. He simply told

18 me that the JNA was the only armed force on the territory of Yugoslavia

19 which was a legitimate armed force and that it had the authority that it

20 had. I could not agree with that, because at that time we did not need a

21 military administration, and everybody pointed into that direction. I

22 also told him that I could no longer perceive the JNA as the army of all

23 the peoples and of all the nationalities that existed on the territory of

24 Yugoslavia.

25 Q. And why was that? Why had your view of the JNA changed?

Page 16553

1 A. The developments that took place on the territory of the Republic

2 of Slovenia, on the territory of the Republic of Croatia and the moves on

3 the part of the high ranking officers of the JNA who communicated only

4 with representatives of the Serbian people, pointed to the fact that the

5 Yugoslav People's Army was the army of only one people, and increasingly

6 an army of just one political party, and that was the Serbian democratic

7 party.

8 Q. Now, did the JNA in fact come to Teslic and take the records?

9 A. Yes, they did. After this very hard day when a number of

10 civilians wanted to prevent the JNA from taking those records from the

11 Secretariat, many of those civilians literally placed their bodies in

12 front of the vehicles of the JNA to prevent this from happening. The JNA,

13 i.e., its officers, withdrew but on the following night, when the duty

14 officer in the Secretariat was a Serbian citizen, they got in the building

15 and they took all the records that they wanted to take on the previous

16 day.

17 Q. Now, up until the autumn of 1991, were there any JNA units

18 stationed in Teslic?

19 A. No.

20 Q. Did that change in the autumn of 1991?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. In what way?

23 A. In a very strange way. An active officer of the JNA, whose family

24 name was -- I can't remember exactly, he came to talk with the president

25 of the municipal assembly. We found out that in the village of Djulici

Page 16554

1 where certain facilities of the JNA were at the time, a JNA unit was

2 stationed there. This unit was some 100 men strong. And this was the

3 first time ever that active officers of the JNA and its troop were present

4 in Teslic or in its immediate vicinity, because this village of Djulici

5 was in the immediate vicinity of Teslic.

6 Q. You said that you couldn't remember the family name of the

7 officer. Were you able to remember it at the time you made your statement

8 to the investigator in 2000?

9 A. Yes. I know that he was then replaced by Dejan Bilanovic but

10 currently I can't remember the name of this first person, the person that

11 Mr. Dejan Bilanovic replaced.

12 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, this is a -- unless there is an

13 objection I mean, I can either lead it from him from his statement or ask

14 him to refresh his memory from his statement.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: As far as I am concerned, you can go ahead. I

16 wouldn't imagine there is a strong objection from the Defence.

17 MS. KORNER: Thank you.

18 Q. Was the name of the first officer Major Veljko Bosanac?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. You said that he met with the president of the municipality. Did

21 you -- were you ever given an explanation by Mr. Peresic as to why this

22 JNA unit was suddenly being stationed there?

23 A. No.

24 Q. Was any kind of training being carried out within the municipality

25 by the JNA?

Page 16555

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. And where was that being carried out?

3 A. Later on, we received information from some of the citizens of

4 Teslic municipality who moved about the entire territory of the

5 municipality for various reasons, either for farm work or some other

6 reasons, and they told us that a number of the troops of the JNA were

7 stationed in a Serbian village called Jesenova and that in that area,

8 there was an intensive training of reservists taking place.

9 Q. Now, again, around this period of time, the autumn of 1991, was

10 there anything happening in relation to non-Serb property?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And what was that? First of all, what kind of property? Private

13 or commercial?

14 A. Private property, the property belonging to Bosniaks and Croats,

15 of those who had already been targeted in summer and autumn of 1992, their

16 property was blown up or set fire to. The property that I'm talking

17 about, are mostly summer cottages that were not permanently inhabited by

18 their owners.

19 Q. The translation of what you said is that they were targeted in the

20 summer and autumn of 1992. Did you mean 1992?

21 A. 1991. I may have made a mistake.

22 Q. All right. Were these explosions or arson investigated by the

23 police?

24 A. Unfortunately, the police did carry out some on-site

25 investigations but without any results. All they did was to make a note

Page 16556

1 of the act but perpetrators were never found.

2 Q. I want to move through quickly the last real event of 1991. Did

3 the Serbs hold a plebiscite in November of 1991 in Teslic?

4 A. A plebiscite did take place.

5 Q. And then in -- moving through until early 1992, was there then the

6 referendum in February, organised by the government of Bosnia-Herzegovina?

7 A. Yes, there was.

8 Q. Now, I want, before I deal with the last part of the events that

9 you were concerned with in Teslic, to ask you about the Autonomous Region

10 of Krajina so-called. Did you become aware of the creation of such an

11 autonomous region?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And how did you become aware? From the media or from any other

14 information that you were given?

15 A. I learned that from the media.

16 Q. Did you ever become aware of the Serbs creating something called

17 the Autonomous Region of Northern Bosnia?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. And how did you become aware of that?

20 A. Also from the media.

21 Q. Did you ever learn whether Mr. Peresic had anything to do with

22 this particular autonomous region?

23 A. No.

24 Q. Now, did you ever meet Radoslav Brdjanin?

25 A. No.

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13 English transcripts.













Page 16558

1 Q. Did you ever see him in Teslic?

2 A. No.

3 Q. Did you become aware of Mr. Brdjanin? And can you tell us, if you

4 did, when you first became aware of Mr. Brdjanin?

5 A. I met Mr. Brdjanin -- actually, I became aware of him through the

6 electronic and written media. I never saw him personally face to face.

7 It is only today that I'm seeing him for the first time. I know that he

8 was a deputy in the Assembly of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina and I

9 saw him in the media, I read about him, and I followed his appearances and

10 activities, but only through the media.

11 MS. KORNER: Does Your Honour want me to ask him to identify him

12 Mr. Brdjanin, as he said he saw him on television.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. He mentioned and he also said that he's seen

14 him here.

15 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Judge, please.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: He's just stated that he's seeing him for the first

17 time today. Perhaps he may look left, right and centre and identify him

18 for us, if he can.


20 Q. Sir --

21 MS. BARUCH: Your Honour, I have been informed since the last

22 in-court identification that the acknowledgement of the various common law

23 countries and authorities followed by this Court is that the setup in the

24 courtroom is so prejudicial and influential with regard to such

25 identifications, that it would be inappropriate to do so in the courtroom

Page 16559

1 and for that reason, I am objecting.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: It is not -- the objection is not sustained. It's

3 overruled. It's only because the witness has pointed out that he is

4 seeing him here for the first time that we want to make sure that he is

5 seeing the right person. So otherwise, we wouldn't have asked him to

6 identify the witness.


8 Q. Sir, can you just -- the best thing would be if you can look

9 around the Court and tell us whether you can see Mr. Brdjanin and if so,

10 where.

11 A. Yes. I can see him to the left side of me.

12 Q. Is there anybody next to him?

13 A. Yes. A policeman.

14 MS. KORNER: I don't think there is --

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Let's go ahead.

16 MS. KORNER: Thank you. I suppose technically I see my last words

17 because I muttered them, for the record that he identified Mr. Brdjanin.

18 Q. I know it's a long time ago, sir, but can you remember now

19 anything about the sort of speeches that Mr. Brdjanin was making?

20 A. I can say that Mr. Brdjanin, at least during the period while I

21 followed the political situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, when he spoke

22 in the Assembly of Bosnia-Herzegovina, his political speeches were rather

23 heated.

24 Q. And can you give us a little bit more detail of that? What do you

25 mean by "rather heated"?

Page 16560

1 A. When I say "heated," I mean that the discussions in the parliament

2 regarding the referendum, he was the advocate of the Serbs living in

3 Yugoslavia and he said that the Serbs would never accept the independence

4 of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

5 Q. Now, finally on Mr. Brdjanin, did you become aware of his

6 position -- I'm sorry, I should go back. Did you become aware of the

7 establishment of a regional Crisis Staff of the Autonomous Region with its

8 base in Banja Luka?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And again, how did you hear about that? Through the media or

11 through people telling you?

12 A. Through the media.

13 Q. And did you become aware, again, obviously, through the media, of

14 Mr. Brdjanin's position on that Crisis Staff?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And that position was what?

17 A. He was the president of the Crisis Staff.

18 Q. Thank you. All right. Now, after the referendum that took place

19 on the independence of Bosnia, how did that affect the Assembly in Teslic?

20 A. This had a huge bearing, a huge negative bearing on the work of

21 the Municipal Assembly of Teslic. The plebiscite was carried out, the

22 so-called by the election commission of the municipality of Teslic which

23 consisted of Serbs only, and the referendum on the independence of

24 Bosnia-Herzegovina was carried out by the legitimate municipal election

25 commission that existed in Teslic. Moreover, the Municipal Assembly of

Page 16561

1 Teslic no longer had the correct harmony amongst the political parties

2 that existed before, and there was a deterioration in the professional

3 relationship between the president of the municipal assembly and the

4 president of the executive board on the one hand, and the secretary to the

5 municipal assembly on the other hand.

6 Q. Now, did there come a time when there was a meeting of the

7 assembly to discuss joining the Teslic municipality to the Serbian

8 republic, which had been declared?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Was that meeting attended by all the deputies?

11 A. Unfortunately, I as the secretary to the assembly, the secretaries

12 of various Secretariats, or any of the deputies from the Croatian or

13 Muslim peoples were not aware of such assembly session being prepared, nor

14 did we ever found out when it took place.

15 Q. And how did you get to hear about it?

16 A. In the first half of April, 1991, the president of the executive

17 board of the Municipal Assembly of Teslic, Mr. Milorad Markovic, called

18 all the secretaries of the Secretariats of the Municipal Assembly of

19 Teslic to a meeting. At that meeting, he told us that on the previous

20 day, there had been a session of the Municipal Assembly of Teslic and that

21 at that session, a decision had been made for municipality of Teslic to

22 join the so-called Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The present

23 officials belonging to the Bosniak and Croat peoples found this very

24 surprising.

25 Q. All right. Now, you said again or it's the translation, in the

Page 16562

1 first half of April, 1991. Can we take it you meant 1992?

2 A. 1992, yes.

3 Q. Now, I want you to look, please, at a document, Exhibit P1921.

4 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, while that's happening can I correct an

5 exhibit number that I gave to Your Honour on the maps, just so it's there?

6 The ethnic map should have been P1958, not P1959.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner.

8 MS. BARUCH:, I'm sorry, Your Honour, I have the ethnic map

9 originally as 1957 and --

10 A.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: You are right. The -- what was 1959 does not

12 have -- is not the ethnic map but it's the map with some corresponding

13 photos. So that I assume needs to become 1958 because there was no 1958

14 in between the 1959 and the 1957. So the ethnic map would, I assume,

15 remain 1957.

16 MS. KORNER: Thank you, Your Honour, I'm sorry, there was a slight

17 confusion over maps.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. It's not the first time that that

19 happens, Ms. Korner. So ... yesterday, we had a hell of a confusion in

20 the morning.

21 MS. KORNER: Yes.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mrs. Baruch.


24 Q. First of all, I don't think, sir, you saw that until you arrived

25 at this Court to look at these documents; is that correct? You didn't see

Page 16563












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Page 16564

1 it at the time?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. We will just go through it and then I want to ask you something

4 about it. It is allegedly -- and it's signed you apparently by Mr.

5 Peresic. Do you recognise the signature of Mr. Peresic?.

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Is the formal document that states that the Teslic Municipal

8 Assembly at the meeting held on the 6th of April, adopted by a majority

9 vote, the following decision: "Teslic a constituent part of the Serbian

10 Republic of Bosnia, of the territory of the Serbian republic, that the

11 constitution and laws of the Socialist Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina

12 shall become null and void, and laws of the Serbian republic applied."

13 And then to deal with the administrative organs, "pending final

14 consolidation of the Serbian autonomous region of Northern Bosnia, all

15 functions of municipal administrative organs and state and public

16 institutions shall be performed through the organs of the autonomous

17 region of the Bosnian Krajina whose seat is in Banja Luka." And then a

18 call for the citizens to accept this, particularly the Muslim and Croatian

19 fellow citizens.

20 Now, the form of this document, did that comply with the normal

21 form of documents issuing decisions?

22 A. No.

23 Q. What should it -- what should this document have contained?

24 A. This document was done rather unprofessionally. All documents

25 that were adopted by the Municipal Assembly of Teslic had a preamble that

Page 16565

1 was quite different. In the preamble, it would say that pursuant to

2 article such and such of the statute of the Municipal Assembly of Teslic,

3 and pursuant to such and such article of the rules of procedure of the

4 municipality -- Municipal Assembly of Teslic, at a regular session, and

5 then there should be the number of that session, whether it was the 5th

6 session or the 15th session, et cetera, the following decision has been

7 passed. It never said by a majority vote, because by mentioning the rules

8 of procedure in the preamble, it was obvious that any decision that was

9 passed meant that it was passed by majority vote. Since this document was

10 drafted in this way, it should have invoked this so-called constitution of

11 the Serb Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina and such and such an article

12 should have been mentioned again, the rules of procedure of the Municipal

13 Assembly of Teslic should have been mentioned too, because it was still in

14 force. Also, it should be noted then that such and such a decision was

15 passed, item 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, but this shows that this document or this

16 decision does not refer to any valid document. The Statute of the

17 municipal assembly or the rules of procedure of the municipal assembly, or

18 the constitution of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

19 Q. Before this decision to join the Serb republic, had there been any

20 discussions between yourself and Mr. Peresic or the SDA and the SDS about

21 splitting the assembly into a Serbian assembly and a non-Serb assembly?

22 A. No.

23 Q. Right. Thank you. Now, you -- you can take the document, thank

24 you very much. You were telling us how you were informed by Mr. Markovic

25 about the decision that had been taken. Did Mr. Markovic explain to you

Page 16566

1 what you had -- what you and the other members of the assembly had to do

2 if you wanted to continue to work?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. And what was that?

5 A. After having informed us of the fact that a decision was passed on

6 the annexation of the municipality of Teslic to the Serb Republic of

7 Bosnia-Herzegovina, Mr. Milorad Markovic said that all the employees of

8 the municipality, notably elected officials, if they wished to remain in

9 their positions, should state -- should sign, rather, statements of

10 allegiance to the Serb Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

11 Q. What was your reaction to that?

12 A. We were all truly surprised by this kind of thing. I said that

13 none of the officials that were proposed by the Party of Democratic Action

14 to certain positions in the municipal assembly would not sign such an

15 illegal, illegitimate and unnecessary allegiance to the Serb Republic of

16 Bosnia-Herzegovina. I said that this is indeed an unconstitutional and

17 unlawful way for the assembly to work, as well as for the president of the

18 executive board, and I also said that professional staff members employed

19 in the assembly or municipal organs of Teslic should at least be spared

20 from signing these statements of allegiance to the Serb Republic of

21 Bosnia-Herzegovina. We elected officials came to our positions from

22 certain jobs that we had held previously so we can simply go to our

23 original jobs, whereas people who were staff members at the municipal

24 assembly for 15 or 20 years had no where else to go if they would not sign

25 this statement of allegiance.

Page 16567

1 Q. What was Mr. Markovic's reaction to what you said to him? What

2 did he tell you would happen if people didn't sign?

3 A. Mr. Markovic wanted to show his principled stance and rigid stance

4 vis-a-vis this decision passed by the Municipal Assembly of Teslic and he

5 said that all of those who didn't sign this statement of allegiance to the

6 Serb Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina would remain jobless regardless of

7 whether they were elected officials or professional staff within the

8 municipal assembly.

9 Q. What happened to people who didn't sign the loyalty oath?

10 A. Neither I nor other officials belonging to the Muslim and Croat

11 peoples, did not sign this loyalty oath, and this period went on until the

12 second half of April. Afterwards, people were dismissed if they did not

13 sign this loyalty oath.

14 Q. We got a double negative in this. So do you mean that you and the

15 other officials didn't sign?

16 A. We did not. We did not.

17 Q. You were dismissed eventually and others. What about people such

18 as the police? Were there any non-Serbs in the police?

19 A. After that, this loyalty oath came to apply to the police and

20 public services. First it focused on the municipality and the police, and

21 all of those who did not sign it remained jobless.

22 Q. Now, around this time, April of 1992, were checkpoints set up?

23 A. Yes. After that, checkpoints were already being established in

24 Teslic vis-a-vis neighbouring municipalities and vis-a-vis villages where

25 there were Muslims and Bosniaks and Croats.

Page 16568

1 Q. Who was manning the checkpoints?

2 A. These checkpoints were manned by unknown men. We called them

3 paramilitary formations. They were armed.

4 Q. Did you ever discover if these paramilitary formations had any

5 kind of name?

6 A. No.

7 Q. I want you to look, please, at one other document, P1925. I'm not

8 sure I made the last one an exhibit. Did I? Oh, it's already. I'm

9 crazy, it's already got a number. Could we have a look at P1925, please?

10 Now, this is a document which is headed the Teslic municipality

11 Crisis Staff, and it's dated the 6th of May. Did you know before you left

12 at the end of May, Teslic, that there was now a Crisis Staff?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. How did you find out about it? Did somebody tell you about it or

15 did you hear about it on the media?

16 A. I heard about it directly from some of my friends.

17 Q. Did Mr. Peresic tell you that a Crisis Staff was established, of

18 which he was now the head, president?

19 A. No.

20 Q. If we look, please, at item 1.8, that states that all paramilitary

21 formations and individuals illegally possessing arms and ammunition are

22 called upon to hand them over to the municipal TO staff or the nearest

23 military unit immediately or by no later than 1500 hours on 11 May, 1992.

24 After the expiry of this deadline, responsible organs will search and

25 confiscate arms and ammunition applying the most rigorous sanctions.

Page 16569












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Page 16570

1 How did you find out about this call to disarm?

2 A. I heard this call to disarm over the local radio, Radio Teslic.

3 Q. Was it, as the order says here, all paramilitary formations and

4 individuals, that was said over the radio, should surrender their arms?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Was that aimed at everyone or a specific element of the

7 population?

8 MS. BARUCH: Your Honour, I'm going to object. That calls for

9 speculation.

10 MS. KORNER: No it doesn't. I'm going to ask for why he says it

11 or how he knows what he's about to say.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Objection rejected.

13 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Your Honour.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Go ahead, Ms. Korner.


16 Q. Was that aimed at all or just certain sections of the population?

17 A. This call was aimed at the Bosniak and Croatian population only.

18 Q. And how are you able to say that?

19 A. Because in that period, within the unit of the Yugoslav People's

20 Army that was in that area, there were only members of the Serb people.

21 According to the decision passed by the Crisis Staff, it was the legal and

22 legitimate unit in that area. Also, at the public security station, in

23 the police, there were only members of the Serb people who were left. In

24 the opinion of the Crisis Staff, it was legal and legitimate too. It was

25 the legal and legitimate unit. So this only pertained to the Bosniak and

Page 16571

1 Croatian population. For the most part, those policemen, Bosniaks and

2 Croats, who had stopped working, who were forced to stop working at the

3 police station in Teslic.

4 Q. What effect did that call to disarm have on you and the other

5 members of the non-Serbs whom you knew?

6 A. This propaganda or rather this call that was broadcast over Radio

7 Teslic introduced quite a bit of panic among the Bosniak and Croat

8 populations. They were trying to fathom what this meant. A number of

9 them returned their hunting weapons or the pistols that they had obtained

10 legally.

11 Q. Amongst the Serbs that you knew, did this call cause any of the

12 panic that it caused to the Bosniaks and Croats?

13 MS. BARUCH: I'm going to object again, Your Honour, I think that

14 calls for speculation of what other people felt.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Not speculation at all. It's a perception that he

16 may have arrived at, having been present and having experienced these

17 events. So it's not speculation. Go ahead, Ms. Korner.


19 Q. Did this panic that you've described, people --

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Apart from this, this is a question that has been

21 repeatedly asked actually to about 80 or 90 per cent of the witnesses that

22 have come here to testify.


24 Q. Talked about the panic it caused, people handing in not illegal

25 weapons but legal weapons. The people, the Serbs that you knew, did they

Page 16572

1 have the same panic, handing in weapons that were legally permitted?

2 A. No. They did not feel this kind of panic and they were not

3 handing in their weapons either.

4 Q. Now, did you yourself possess any weapon?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. And what was that?

7 A. A pistol.

8 Q. Was that a pistol for which you had a permit?

9 A. Yes. I got that pistol legally from the secretary of the

10 Secretariat of National Defence, and I had a permit for that weapon in my

11 official capacity.

12 Q. Did you hand in your pistol?

13 A. No.

14 Q. And why was that? Or rather why didn't you hand it in?

15 A. I was afraid for my own safety.

16 Q. What did you think might happen, as far as you or your family were

17 concerned?

18 A. Since I was in Teslic then with my wife and our eight-month-old

19 child, we were alone in our apartment, and the only kind of safety I could

20 fear after everything that had happened at the police station, was that I

21 had this pistol. If my apartment were to be attacked or broken into or

22 something like that.

23 Q. You say that everything that had happened at the police station.

24 What do you mean by that?

25 A. What I already said, at the police station there were only ethnic

Page 16573

1 Serb policemen left. I did not trust the police station in Teslic any

2 longer either.

3 Q. Did you have any reason to think that there might be an attack on

4 your apartment or your family?

5 A. Well, certainly, I was afraid, amidst this chaos that started to

6 prevail throughout town, also there was such lawlessness in the

7 municipality, and in the police. People were being forced to sign a

8 loyalty oath to the Serb Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. You simply no

9 longer had an institution to rely upon and that you could expect to

10 protect you.

11 Q. Did you have any information, whether right or wrong, that might

12 suggest that you -- would be a target of any attack?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. First of all, what was the information?

15 A. What we already touched upon, the Crisis Staff. I received

16 information that the Crisis Staff was meeting very often and that they had

17 compiled certain lists of Bosniaks and Croats that should particularly be

18 paid attention to, and that should particularly be monitored.

19 Q. And from whom or how did you receive this information?

20 A. Well, my friends in Teslic still had some contacts with ethnic

21 Serbs that were correct. They had conveyed such information to them.

22 Some were told quite openly that they were on such and such a list. Some

23 were told that it would be best for them to move out of the municipality

24 of Teslic, and it is through them that I received this type of

25 information.

Page 16574

1 Q. And the lists that were compiled for Bosniaks and Croats that

2 should be paid special attention to, were they told what was going to

3 happen to people on this lists or what might happen to people on this

4 lists -- on these lists?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Which was what?

7 A. We were told quite openly that on this list were Bosniaks and

8 Croats that the Crisis Staff planned to liquidate at a given point in

9 time, that a certain number of Bosniaks and Croats from that list would be

10 brought in, interrogated, mistreated, a certain number from this list

11 would be expelled, and so on.

12 Q. All right. Now, did you speak to Mr. Peresic about this? Or if

13 not you personally, people on your behalf?

14 A. No. In May, I was practically no longer seeing the president of

15 the assembly. Afterwards, there were certain initiatives that a certain

16 number of people should start talks with the president of the assembly and

17 the commander of the town's defence, in order to discuss possible peaceful

18 solutions that would be acceptable to all the peoples and ethnic groups in

19 the territory of the municipality of Teslic.

20 Q. And did those -- did that get anywhere?

21 A. Since we were in a situation that gave us no way out, as far as

22 the municipality of Teslic was concerned, in the talks we suggested that a

23 group of prominent citizens who did not belong to any political parties,

24 consisting of ethnic Bosniaks and Croats, should go and see the president

25 of the municipal assembly, Mr. Peresic, and that this meeting should also

Page 16575












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Page 16576

1 be attended by Dejan Bilanovic. An open discussion should be held, in

2 terms of what the Bosniak and Croat population of the municipality of

3 Teslic should do, in order to prevent anything bad for happening in the

4 municipality of Teslic, and in order to have peace prevail there.

5 Regrettably, this yielded no results whatsoever. Those who attended this

6 meeting told me that the president and the commander, Dejan Bilanovic, did

7 not really give any reason for optimism, but that certain measures would

8 be taken within the municipality of Teslic.

9 Q. Now, I want you to look very briefly, please, as an exhibit,

10 P1953. This is a document written in September, 1993, reporting on the

11 period between September, 1991 and September, 1993. It's a report by the

12 SJB in Teslic. I just want to ask you about certain things that it says.

13 It talks about, if we look halfway down, we can see reporting the

14 joining -- Teslic on the 6th of April, joining the Krajina autonomous

15 region, and that the Teslic public security station became part of the

16 Banja Luka CSB. Before that, had it fallen under the Doboj CSB?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Then I think we see the reserve police stations mobilised. Then

19 this paragraph, "Serbs in position of authority and some of the active

20 duty police helped in withdrawing weapons and equipment from military

21 depots and storing them at locations in certain villages. The vehicles

22 carrying the weapons were escorted and guarded by the police in the RSMs"

23 - whatever that may be - "This was one of the ways in which the SDS was

24 helped in its work and a preparation of the Serbian people for

25 self-defence."

Page 16577

1 Were you informed by Mr. Peresic or anyone that this is what --

2 they or the Serbs in position of authority were doing?

3 A. No.

4 Q. And then we see, after the separation of the MUP, one Croat and

5 one Muslim pledged loyalty to the Serbian MUP. Then we see the sealing of

6 the town. Then this incident, on the 17th of April, 1992, a group of

7 unidentified persons threw a hand grenade at the police employees manning

8 the checkpoint. And it goes on. Did you hear about this incident?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. What effect did that have on how the non-Serb population,

11 including yourself, felt about how things were going to turn out in

12 Teslic?

13 A. Certainly, this incident that had happened aggravated the

14 situation and increased tensions among ethnic groups in Teslic. Bosniaks

15 and Croats, as I've already said, felt to be in dire straits, as if there

16 was no light at the end of the tunnel, and they could not expect any help

17 or support from those institutions that according to the constitution and

18 law were in charge of helping them.

19 Q. Thank you. Yes, you can give the document back.

20 Now, around the middle of May, did you hear the sounds of

21 artillery?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. And where did those sounds come from?

24 A. Those sounds, the artillery sounds, came from the area of Teslic

25 municipality where Bosniak and Croat villages were, those villages were

Page 16578

1 Komusina, Slatina, Rajseva and Kamenica.

2 Q. Roughly how far away were they from where you lived in the Stenjak

3 area?

4 A. Roughly 8 kilometres.

5 Q. And how could you tell that it was artillery?

6 A. I had served in the Yugoslav People's Army and I was an

7 artilleryman. I was a mortar -- a member of the mortar crew, so I could

8 easily tell those sounds apart. I could easily recognise the artillery

9 sounds.

10 Q. As far as you knew -- sorry, I'll change that question. Was there

11 media reporting about these incidents?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And what did the media say was happening?

14 A. Radio Teslic had already been taken over by Serbs, and according

15 to Radio Teslic, strong HOS forces were concentrated in that area,

16 together with the Green Berets, and according to those reports, the Serb

17 armed forces were carrying out operations in that area.

18 Q. Did you accept that explanation, that this was effectively an

19 attack or a gathering of the HOS, who were I think the Croatian forces,

20 and the Green Berets?

21 A. No.

22 Q. And why was that?

23 A. Up to mid-May, the locals used to come from those areas to the

24 town of Teslic. I spoke to them and they would tell me that in those

25 areas there were just local villagers who were trying to organise their

Page 16579

1 own defence in case they were to be attacked by the so-called Yugoslav

2 People's Army and other paramilitary units. So I had first-hand knowledge

3 on what was going on in this area that was under the blockade by the JNA

4 and paramilitary formations.

5 Q. After this attack or whatever one likes to call it, did people try

6 and leave the municipality? Non-Serbs, I should add.

7 A. Yes. Panic increased amongst Bosniaks and Croats in Teslic and in

8 other parts of the municipality so that already during that period, people

9 started moving out or fleeing on a larger scale, people who were fleeing

10 were Bosniaks and Croats, and they were running to the neighbouring

11 municipality of Tesanj.

12 Q. What happened if the authorities caught the people who were

13 fleeing?

14 A. The only road that one could take from Teslic was not even a road

15 but a route through the woods towards Tesanj. In that area, there were

16 already paramilitary Serbian formations which would intercept citizens,

17 search them, mistreat them, and if they were on the lists that were

18 compiled by the Crisis Staff, then they would be returned to Teslic. If

19 not, they would be allowed to proceed towards Tesanj.

20 Q. And what was happening to the people who were returned to Teslic?

21 Were they allowed to go home?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. On the 26th of May, did you and others decide -- you and your

24 family and others, decide to leave?

25 A. Yes.

Page 16580

1 Q. Why did you take the decision that you had to leave?

2 JUDGE AGIUS: I think he has already given us an answer to that

3 earlier on when you were asking him about the personal danger that he was

4 perceiving.

5 MS. KORNER: It was why he kept his pistol, Your Honour.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yeah, but it went beyond that. Any way, if you want

7 to proceed.

8 MS. KORNER: I may as well get the --

9 JUDGE AGIUS: But he's mentioned that he had a wife and an

10 eight-month-old baby.

11 MS. KORNER: Yes.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Go ahead, any way.

13 MS. KORNER: Thank you.

14 Q. What was the final, if you like, thing or combination of

15 circumstances that made you decide to leave?

16 A. On that evening, that is on the 26th of May, two or three tanks

17 stormed into Teslic. Those were JNA tanks. This increased the panic

18 among the citizens and I finally took the decision to flee Teslic and go

19 towards Tesanj. I have to be honest and say that I did not expect that

20 concentration camps would ever be open in Teslic. I did not expect that

21 there would be cruel killings. As one of the leaders of the SDA, I

22 primarily feared that I would be interrogated by the Serbian police in

23 Teslic, that I would be mistreated and that this mistreatment would be

24 more of a psychological nature but later on, when I heard what had

25 happened in Teslic to the Croats and the Bosniaks who had remained there,

Page 16581












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Page 16582

1 I found it very difficult to accept that things like that could ever have

2 happened in Teslic.

3 Q. All right. And so on the 26th of May, did yourself and others in

4 fact go through the woods and went to Tesanj?

5 A. Yes. I asked my friend, Ibro Merjamic, who was a villager of

6 Stenjak, the neighbouring village of Tesanj, I asked him to try and take

7 me through the woods to Tesanj. If you take this route through the woods

8 it would take about an hour and a half. The ten of us led by this friend

9 of mine travelled for six hours to Tesanj. We crossed various streams and

10 we managed to avoid those paramilitary formations that had been stationed

11 along that forest road from Teslic to Tesanj.

12 Q. And whilst you remained in Tesanj, as I think we've mentioned, did

13 you become the Presidency of -- the president of the War Presidency of

14 effectively Teslic in exile?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And when did you return to Teslic?

17 A. After all of these developments, you mean?

18 Q. Yes, the -- after -- did you go back to Teslic after the Dayton

19 agreement?

20 A. Not yet.

21 Q. Yes. Thank you, Mr. Osmanovic.

22 MS. KORNER: That's all I ask.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner. And I don't know if -- who

24 will be leading the cross-examination?

25 MS. BARUCH: I will be, Your Honour. Is this a good time to take

Page 16583

1 a break and then go straight through?

2 JUDGE AGIUS: This is what I was going to suggest but I think it

3 would be more convenient. How much time do you think you will require?

4 MS. BARUCH: I don't think it will be very long, Your Honour. I

5 do not think it will be very long.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: In other words, if we start -- let's take a break of

7 25 minutes in any case. We keep it at 25 minutes and we take it up from

8 there.

9 --- Recess taken at 12.19 p.m.

10 --- On resuming at 12.50 p.m.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Baruch? Now, Witness, I should like to

12 draw your attention to a principle that -- a rule that you need to follow,

13 and that we impose here, and namely that you do not have a right to make

14 any distinction between questions coming from the Prosecution or questions

15 coming from the Defence. The accused here, personally or through his

16 lawyers, has a right o cross-examine each witness what is brought forward

17 and that necessarily entails a responsibility, an obligation, on your part

18 to answer each question that is put to you from the -- from the Defence as

19 fully and as truthfully as you can. In conformity with the solemn

20 declaration that you made at the beginning of your testimony. You are

21 going to be cross-examined by Madam Baruch.

22 Madam Baruch?

23 MS. BARUCH: May it please the Court?

24 Cross-examined by Ms. Baruch:

25 Q. Mr. Osmanovic, I'm one of the lawyers for Mr. Brdjanin. I'm going

Page 16584

1 to ask you a few questions. The first is I'd like to try to understand

2 your participation in the organisation of the SDA. I believe that you

3 mentioned that in your statement that you were -- that you participated in

4 the formation. Can you tell us about that, please?

5 A. Yes. I was the president of the initiative committee to establish

6 the SDA in Teslic. Once we were aware of the fact that general and

7 democratic multi-party elections would be held in Yugoslavia, we set out

8 to establish new political organisations, so I decided to become one of

9 the initiators to establish the SDA in Teslic.

10 Q. And I noticed as well in your statement, or rather your statement

11 here today, that you are the vice-president of the Republika Srpska. Did

12 I understand that correct?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Okay. And are you the only vice-president or is there more than

15 one vice-president?

16 A. There are two vice-presidents.

17 Q. And the ethnicity of the other vice-president is?

18 A. In accordance with the constitutional amendments, one

19 vice-president is a Bosniak and the other one is a Croat.

20 Q. So that in the Republika Srpska, all three ethnicities are

21 represented in high positions; would that be correct?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. And can you tell me if you're also a minister or a secretary of

24 any sort or is your sole position that of one of the vice-presidents of

25 the RS?

Page 16585

1 A. I do not hold a position in the government of Republika Srpska.

2 According to the constitution, the Republika Srpska has a president and

3 president has its two vice-presidents, that means I do not hold any

4 positions in the government of Republika Srpska itself.

5 Q. Now, I think you haven't testified about this but other people may

6 have mentioned similar situations. I think that there was a bit of a

7 hoorah recently, that is after the year 2000, when you visited some grave

8 exhumations for Muslims who were killed during 1991 and 1992; is that

9 correct? Was there some protestations about that?

10 A. I'm not aware of any protests. Can you be more precise, please?

11 Q. Fine. I was trying to find out if anybody was disturbed because

12 you visited the exhumations, if there were any Serb protests about that,

13 because, in fact, I think it's perfectly reasonable for you to visit the

14 scene of an exhumation and show your respect. Would you agree with that?

15 A. Yes. I was present during the burial of the exhumed remains of

16 the people of Srebrenica, and this has recently taken place in Srebrenica.

17 Q. Okay. And you did not do that as any provocative or inappropriate

18 activity on your part, did you? You were merely showing your respect and

19 your concern to people of your ethnicity; isn't that true?

20 A. Yes. That burial unfortunately was attended by the officials of

21 Republika Srpska who are Muslims. We would have liked to see the

22 president and the other vice-president at that burial. I attended as one

23 of the vice-presidents of Republika Srpska. I was invited, as such, by

24 the organisers.

25 Q. Thank you. I think this would be an appropriate point to remind

Page 16586

1 you to listen carefully to my questions because we can go a whole lot

2 faster if you answer the specific question that I ask. Now, you said that

3 you had some conversations with Mr. Peresic, who was the president of the

4 Teslic Municipal Assembly, and I think you told us that Mr. Peresic was a

5 member of the SDS. Did I hear you correctly?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. The reason that I'm asking that, Mr. Osmanovic, is because I've

8 heard that he was a member and maybe even is still a member of the SDP

9 party. Have you ever heard that?

10 A. He was a member of the League of Communists in the former

11 Yugoslavia before the elections that took place in November, 1990. After

12 that, he was a member of the SDS, as far as I know he was never a member

13 of the SDP.

14 Q. Is that because you considered him a member of the SDS or because

15 you know some specific fact situation associating him with the SDS and not

16 the SDP?

17 A. He was a member of the Serbian Democratic Party and he was on its

18 list for municipal deputies. He was on the SDS list. He represented the

19 SDS as one of its candidates for the deputies in the municipal assembly.

20 Q. Okay. Now, I referred you to conversations that you reported

21 having with Mr. Peresic, and one of those conversations was with regard to

22 why Serbs did not want to leave Yugoslavia, and become part of a new,

23 independent Bosnia-Herzegovina. Do you remember being asked about that

24 when you gave your statement?

25 A. Yes.

Page 16587












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13 English transcripts.













Page 16588

1 Q. And is it correct that Mr. Peresic told you that the Serbs did not

2 want to find themselves a minority in an independent Bosnia controlled by

3 Muslims and Croats? Did he indicate that to you?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Now, when the JNA came to the town of Teslic to take the reserve

6 military records, you've told us generally that the people of the town

7 prevented them from doing it on the first occasion. Do you recall that

8 event?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Can you tell me, was that all citizens of every ethnicity in

11 Teslic prevented him from doing that?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. I'm sorry, I said preventing him; I meant preventing the JNA.

14 Thank you for understanding my question.

15 So, can you tell me how these citizens of every ethnicity from

16 Teslic that prevented the taking of the reserve list, military reserve

17 lists, can you tell me how they were able to block the army of their

18 country?

19 A. Once the news spread in Teslic that the officers of the JNA had

20 arrived in the Secretariat for National Defence in order to take over the

21 records -- and before that, we heard on the television that such things

22 had already happened in other municipalities, the civilians had already

23 been informed about that and what was happening with the records. After

24 that, there was a spontaneous rally of the city population in Teslic

25 municipality, and as I've already told you, they prevented the JNA from

Page 16589

1 doing what they wanted to do. They threw themselves in front of the

2 vehicles of the JNA and the building of the Secretariat for National

3 Defence was blocked by the bodies of these people. There was also the

4 police there, members of the public security station were there, so the

5 whole situation bordered on an incident, an incident was threatening to

6 escalate from that.

7 Q. Did any of the citizens arm themselves for that event, that you

8 know of?

9 A. I don't have that information.

10 Q. Okay. And you said -- by the way, you said that the next -- that

11 night or the next night, the JNA was able to get the information from the

12 People's Defence headquarters because you believe there was a Serb

13 employee on duty that night? Is that right?

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, he said it already. He did say it already.


16 Q. Okay. My question to you is wasn't the head of the People's

17 Defence at that time a Muslim?

18 A. Yes. But in the Secretariat, after regular working hours, there

19 had to be persons on duty, and everybody who was employed at the

20 Secretariat had their turn.

21 Q. Okay. But assignments were made by the head of that department;

22 is that correct?

23 A. Yes. The secretary of the Secretariat still abided by the

24 principle that there had to be a roster as to when who would be on duty,

25 irrespective of ethnicity.

Page 16590

1 Q. And that was the man, Degirmendzic; is that right? Mensur

2 Degirmendzic? Is that right? He was head of the department?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. You also talked about later there were about a hundred soldiers,

5 headed by Veljko Bosanac, stationed at Djulici -- I hope I'm pronouncing

6 that in a way that you can understand it. Do you remember the month of

7 that assignment?

8 A. It was the second half of 1991.

9 Q. Okay. And was that the time that JNA troops were leaving Slovenia

10 and Croatia?

11 A. I think so.

12 Q. So that the JNA troops who had previously been stationed in

13 Slovenia or Croatia would have to find another place to be stationed,

14 correct?

15 A. In a certain sense, yes.

16 Q. Okay. And when you were saying that now it happened that 100 JNA

17 soldiers - and they were JNA soldiers at that time - were stationed in

18 Teslic municipality, "they never gave us an explanation," who would you

19 have expected to give you an explanation with regard to the JNA forces'

20 assignments?

21 A. We expected the president of the assembly to convene all the

22 persons in charge in the municipality, the head of the public security

23 station, the chief of police, this Major Bosanac, and to seek information

24 in this regard. It was to be expected that this would be dealt with by a

25 session of the municipal assembly.

Page 16591

1 Q. And in fact, what had occurred is JNA headquarters had -- in

2 Belgrade, had ordered the assignment of those JNA troops to Teslic

3 municipality; isn't that true?

4 A. Yes, but as for conditions for a longer stay of these JNA units,

5 there weren't any in the local commune of Djulici, in this make-shift

6 barracks.

7 Q. So is what you just told me that the barracks that they were

8 actually stationed at, in, were not designed to be permanent barracks but

9 merely almost the temporary make-shift place for them to stay? Is that

10 what you just said?

11 A. It's a military facility.

12 Q. But you used the word "make-shift."

13 A. It's a military facility that was used when there was mobilisation

14 in Doboj, Teslic, and even beyond. This is where reservists stayed for a

15 certain amount of time. So these are prefabricated buildings. That's why

16 I used the word.

17 Q. Okay. And in amongst those hundred soldiers, were there any

18 Bosniaks in that unit? That is, people of Muslim ethnicity.

19 A. I don't have that information.

20 Q. I appreciate that, Mr. Osmanovic. I think you just said you don't

21 know instead of guessing, and thank you, I hope you can continue to do

22 that. It's very helpful to the Court.

23 You said in your statement that there was even an area where they

24 trained nearby. Would you agree with me that it is useful and regular for

25 soldiers to continue their training periodically and that there is nothing

Page 16592

1 suspicious about soldiers training?

2 A. Yes. But there were reservists at that training.

3 Q. Were there any Muslim reservists at that training?

4 A. No.

5 Q. Is that because the Muslim reservists had refused mobilisation?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Okay. Now, you said in your statement that, "We learned that

8 their presence was to arm the Serbian civilian population." Can you tell

9 me who learned that?

10 A. We received that information from our local people who were moving

11 around in that area. This area is populated by Serbs only, so these

12 citizens of ours had received information from citizens who were of Serb

13 ethnicity as to what had been going on in the area.

14 Q. So is what you're telling the Court what you learned was not

15 directly from any official source but you heard it from someone who heard

16 it from somebody else who was just moving around in the area and gleaning

17 information? Is that correct?

18 A. Yes. Obviously, nobody felt it was necessary to provide anybody

19 else with official information, anybody who was in position of authority

20 from among the Bosniaks and the Croats in the municipality of Teslic.

21 Q. So people who you knew, Muslims in Teslic, getting pieces of

22 information from Serbs in that area where there were no Muslims, discussed

23 this amongst themselves and that's how you learned the purpose of the JNA

24 being there? Would that be correct?

25 A. Yes. That is correct. Until then, the training of reservists had

Page 16593












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

13 English transcripts.













Page 16594

1 never taken place in that way in a particular area.

2 Q. And in fact, you had not had JNA stationed in that particular area

3 in the past; isn't that true?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Okay. Now, the Prosecutor asked you to look at P1925 and I would

6 like you to look at that document again.

7 MS. BARUCH: Now, Your Honours, I didn't prepare a list because I

8 didn't know which documents Ms. Korner was going to use and I see that the

9 bailiff has those records easily available.

10 Q. So Mr. Osmanovic, could you look specifically at the second page

11 of that agenda item? Because you drew a conclusion with regard to

12 Prosecutor's Exhibit 1925 and specifically paragraph 1.8. I think you'll

13 agree that I'm reading this correctly when I say it says, "All

14 paramilitary formations and individuals illegally possessing arms" and you

15 can read the rest of those sentences. It does say that even in B/C/S,

16 doesn't it?

17 MS. KORNER: I agree.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. You don't need to answer it because the

19 Prosecution agrees.

20 MS. BARUCH: Thank you.

21 Q. Mr. Osmanovic, the reason that I directed your attention to that

22 is because I believe you had indicated in your direct examination that the

23 paramilitaries in the area were Serb paramilitaries; is that correct?

24 A. No.

25 Q. There were paramilitaries who were Muslim in the area of Teslic,

Page 16595

1 inside the municipality?

2 A. As you said, this referred to all paramilitary formations, and it

3 was addressed by the Crisis Staff of Teslic and there were no Bosniaks or

4 Croats on the Crisis Staff. They thought that the present units of the

5 Yugoslav People's Army along with the reservists who were undergoing

6 training were legal and legitimate forces in the territory of the

7 municipality of Teslic. They also considered the public security station

8 and its policemen to be legal and legitimate. In their view, this call

9 referred to the Bosniak and Croat population only.

10 Q. Now, I did not ask what somebody's internal thinking process and

11 what their view may have been. My question to you was with regard to the

12 paramilitary organisations operating within the Teslic municipality.

13 Can't you agree with me that there were Serb paramilitary organisations

14 operating within the Teslic municipality? There were such paramilitaries,

15 weren't there?

16 A. Yes, that's correct.

17 Q. And the wording of this agenda item, 1.8, doesn't limit itself to

18 certain paramilitary organisations, and I'll get back to that in a minute.

19 It says all paramilitary formations, doesn't it?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Okay. Now, you raised a question in my mind. Were there, to your

22 knowledge, Muslim, Bosniak, paramilitary operatives in the municipality of

23 Teslic at that time?

24 A. In that period, in the territory of the municipality of Teslic,

25 there was self-organisation among the Bosniak and Croat populations in

Page 16596

1 certain villages only. That is to say, to put up resistance if they are

2 attacked.

3 Q. Okay. So we are talking in May of 1992, about paramilitary

4 organisations in Teslic that were Bosniak or Muslim, whom you have

5 described as self-organisation; is that right? When you use

6 self-organisation, you mean they formed paramilitary organisations?

7 A. To put it in a certain way, this was defence of Bosniak and Croat

8 villages. That is to say self-organisation on the part of that section of

9 the population.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, Mrs. Baruch. It's my impression that

11 you're trying to answer this question tangentially. The question is a

12 very simple one and a very direct one. Do you see any distinction at all

13 in your mind between what has been referred to you as a paramilitary

14 organisation and what you have described as self-organisation for the

15 purposes of defence? It's being suggested to you that these are one and

16 the same thing, paramilitaries and self-organised groups. Would you agree

17 with that proposition or not?

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you see, the Bosniak and the

19 Croat population was completely pushed out of the police, out of the

20 Yugoslav People's Army that was present in Teslic. They embarked upon

21 this form of self-defence only if the police and these units went and

22 attacked their villages. Somebody can consider that to be defence or a

23 way of self-organisation in case of an attack.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: That's as far as you're going to get, Mrs. Baruch,

25 so move to the next question.

Page 16597

1 MS. BARUCH: I suspect the Court is right.

2 Q. You have talked before about people who were acting in a way to

3 defend themselves because the Bosniaks were no longer a part of the police

4 and had refused mobilisation, and you talked about that when Ms. Korner

5 referred you to P1953. And you can tell me if you need that document

6 again, but it's a very small piece that I'm referring to, because -- and

7 I'll read that to you. It says, "The enemy forces could not resign

8 themselves to do this and the first to come under attack were the members

9 of the Serbian MUP. In the evening of April 17th, 1992, a group of

10 unidentified persons threw a hand grenade at the police employees manning

11 the Margita checkpoint." Those people manning that checkpoint were Serb;

12 correct?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. And the unidentified persons who threw a hand gun -- a hand

15 grenade at the police employees, you would agree that they were non-Serbs;

16 isn't that true?

17 A. No. I cannot agree. I don't know. There never had been a

18 definite investigation in this regard.

19 Q. Well, either they were Serbs throwing grenades at Serbs, in which

20 case some Serbs had illegal weapons, or they were non-Serbs throwing a

21 grenade at Serbs, in which case there were non-Serbs having an illegal

22 weapon, and so directing your attention again back to P1925, when, on the

23 agenda item, it said, "All paramilitary formations and individuals

24 illegally possessing arms and ammunition are called upon to hand them over

25 to the municipal TO," and so that section of the agenda was directed at

Page 16598

1 all citizens, wasn't it?

2 A. That's what it says in this document.

3 Q. Okay. And the reason that I direct you back to P1925 again is

4 that you felt that by reading it, you could explain that it was only

5 directed at Serbs and Croats because the police were legally armed and the

6 TO was legally armed, but there were people in Teslic who were illegally

7 armed at that time, weren't there?

8 A. As I've already said, this is the first time I see this document.

9 Unfortunately, I was not made aware of it before that, but certainly there

10 were people in Teslic who were in the possession of weapons, illegally and

11 legally.

12 Q. Okay. And as well, you heard over the radio, over the radio, an

13 announcement that all people in Teslic should turn in their illegal

14 weapons; isn't that true?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And you said in your statement that there was never any resistance

17 to the Serbs, and a portion of citizens turned in their weapons. But I've

18 heard you talk today about resistance to authorities. I've heard you say

19 today that there were people who had illegal weapons, and there were

20 Muslims who self-organised for groups that you described as, to defend

21 themselves?

22 MS. KORNER: Well, I'm sorry, that's a mistake, with respect.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Ms. Korner.

24 MS. KORNER: Your Honour I'm sorry, if that's suggested that

25 wasn't in the statement, it's actually in the statement. If Ms. Baruch

Page 16599

1 has a look at page 8, she will see there is a paragraph which begins:

2 "There was never any resistance --" and if she reads on it says,

3 "Villagers in the Teslic municipality were less likely to turn in their

4 weapons and there was some organisation of these villagers into defence

5 forces for their areas but eventually, I think, almost every one turned in

6 their weapon."


8 Q. Isn't it true, Mr. Osmanovic, that there was resistance in Teslic,

9 such as the throwing of the hand grenade at the police? Isn't that

10 correct?

11 A. There was no resistance in terms of carrying out this order or

12 proclamation of the Crisis Staff. A significant number of citizens,

13 particularly in town, returned the weapons that they had had legally.

14 Q. Well, I understand that what you're saying that people who were

15 law-abiding citizens, who had registered their guns and had them legally

16 were also turning in their weapons; is that what you're trying to tell us?

17 A. I've already said that in the territory of the municipality of

18 Teslic, there were many things that were going on that were not in

19 accordance with the law so this was not in accordance with the law but

20 many people handed over their weapons, primarily Bosniaks and Croats,

21 because they wanted a peaceful solution to be found within the territory

22 of the municipality.

23 Q. Do you know that there were searches of homes for illegal weapons?

24 Do you know that that occurred?

25 A. While I was in the territory of the municipality of Teslic, there

Page 16600

1 were no searches of homes for weapons. Later on, according to the

2 information that I received while I was in Tesanj, such things did take

3 place.

4 Q. Did you hear that a police officer was killed when a grenade

5 exploded that had been set up as a trap while they were searching a home

6 for illegal weapons? Did you learn that while you were in Tesanj?

7 A. No. I didn't hear that.

8 Q. You've talked about a list of people to be watched. Have you ever

9 seen a -- such a written list?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. You have seen that list?

12 A. Unfortunately, I only saw that list once the Dayton Accords were

13 signed. It was published in the newspapers, on the territory of Republika

14 Srpska. It was published in an independent newspaper, and that was

15 something that was not good for editor of that paper.

16 Q. It was published in the Republika Srpska, in which newspaper,

17 please?

18 A. An independent newspaper, whose owner was a journalist Kopanja.

19 After this article, that was published over a few issues, he had his car

20 blown up and he was severely injured as a result of that. He became

21 disabled.

22 Q. Can you tell me when that was?

23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Judge, please.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: And the name of the newspaper, please?

25 MS. KORNER: Your Honour we have a lot of information about that,

Page 16601

1 rather than asking the witness to try and remember, we can provide the

2 name of the newspaper and the date.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Ms. Korner.


5 Q. Can I get some idea of the date now, Your Honour, if he knows?

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, yes, it's perfectly legitimate question.


8 Q. Can you tell me the date?

9 A. Unfortunately, it is a well-known thing when this happened. It

10 was either in 1999 or 2000. This newspaper confirmed all the information

11 that we had previously received. My name was also in that newspaper.

12 Q. It was a list of names; is that right?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Now, you talked in your statement about some violence occurring

15 regarding the Muslim, Albanian pastry shop. And I think you told us today

16 that there was a mechanism for putting things on the agenda at the Teslic

17 municipality. Did you attempt to put that matter on the agenda?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. And was it voted to be placed on the agenda?

20 A. The president of the municipal assembly was of the opinion that

21 this should not have been put on the agenda. He thought that the

22 discussion on the political and security situation in Teslic could

23 aggravate the tensions among the deputies. He as the person who was in

24 charge of proposing items for the agenda, thought this should not have

25 been put often the agenda. The deputies who belonged to my political

Page 16602

1 party did raise this issue but we could never obtain a qualified majority

2 in favour of putting this on the agenda.

3 Q. Can you just help me with one thing, then? Was -- am I correctly

4 remembering that the SDA -- I'm sorry, SDS, had 48 per cent of the

5 municipal assembly at that time?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. So the majority of people were not SDS. The majority of the

8 people were the coalition of other parties that made up the other 52 per

9 cent; correct?

10 A. No.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: It's a captious question, Madam Baruch. You're

12 using the word coalition. No one suggested that the remaining 52 per cent

13 was coalesced or had a coalition in operation between them.

14 MS. BARUCH: I'm sorry, if the question suggested it, I can

15 rephrase the question, Your Honour.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Rephrase it, please.


18 Q. So the other 52 per cent of the assembly -- at least 3 per cent of

19 them agreed with the president of the assembly that it should not get on

20 the agenda; is that correct?

21 A. A parliamentary majority, or the coalition in Teslic, was made up

22 of the SDS, the HDZ and the SDA. That was the majority. When the SDA

23 deputies proposed that this should be put on the agenda, this could not be

24 done without the deputies of the SDS.

25 Q. I thought that you had instructed us today that any item could be

Page 16603

1 put on the agenda by a majority vote. Did I get that right?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. And that 48 per cent of the deputies were SDS. I've got that

4 right as well; right?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. So if the other deputies who were not SDS, who agreed that it

7 should go on the agenda, it could have gotten on the agenda; correct?

8 A. But there were SDS -- there were Serb representatives in other

9 parties, like the SDP, the reformists, and some Serbian deputies were not

10 supportive of that.

11 Q. Okay?

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's put the question straight and clear. Those

13 who had an interest to have this included in the agenda, were they in the

14 majority or in a minority at that point in time?

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During the voting, it turned out

16 that they were a minority.


18 Q. Thank you. And one other thing. I thought I read that the

19 commander of the police was a man by the name of Ferid Mahalbasic; is that

20 correct?

21 A. No.

22 Q. Was the commander of the police a Bosniak?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Because I may have said his name wrong or picked the wrong name.

25 Okay. So when something would have to be investigated at that time, there

Page 16604

1 was at least a commander of the police who would have input into the

2 investigation, at that time?

3 JUDGE AGIUS: Just to complement this, according to him in his

4 statement, and I think he did repeat that earlier on today, the commander

5 of the police was Sabahudin Mehmedovic.

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: While the chief of public security was Dusan

8 Kuzmanovic.


10 Q. So when an investigation had to be done early on there was a

11 Bosniak who had input into such investigations; isn't that correct?

12 A. In keeping with the law, this should have been the case.

13 Q. And do you know who was the commander of the police when that

14 Muslim-Albanian pastry shop suffered an explosion?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And his name, please?

17 A. Sabahudin Mehmedovic.

18 Q. The name that I mentioned before; is that correct?

19 A. You've mentioned the name of Ferid Mahalbasic.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. He is right.

21 MS. BARUCH: I'm sorry.

22 Q. It was Sabahudin Mehmedovic. And he was the commander at the time

23 that the Albanian shop exploded and he had at least some input into the

24 investigation of that event; is that correct?

25 A. He complained to me that his work was obstructed, that there was

Page 16605

1 nothing whatsoever he could do with that respect.

2 Q. Well, do you know that there was any information gathered as to

3 who had done that?

4 A. No.

5 Q. Okay. On page 6 of your statement, you said that in April of

6 1992, the Teslic municipal authority met to discuss the joining of the

7 municipality to the Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and you

8 weren't informed of that, and you said despite the fact that you believed

9 the meeting was statutorily illegal, despite that they met, after getting

10 orders from Pale?

11 MS. KORNER: To be accurate, he didn't say he believed it was

12 statutorily illegal. He said that it was statutorily illegal.

13 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, she is right, but he said so because he

14 believed so.

15 MS. BARUCH: Thank you, Your Honour.

16 Q. Despite that you indicate they met after getting orders from Pale.

17 Tell me about that. How do you know about that?

18 A. First of all, I talked about the way the Municipal Assembly of

19 Teslic should have worked.

20 Q. Excuse me, I thought we had a deal that I would -- you would try

21 to answer my question, okay? And my question really goes to the orders

22 from Pale. So can you tell me how you know about that?

23 A. This way of calling the sessions of the municipal assembly should

24 have been preceded by instructions from a centre, and I also learned about

25 that from my friends who had good relations with the Serbs who were

Page 16606

1 employed in municipal organs.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. That will be the last question for today. Do

3 you have much longer, Mrs. Baruch?

4 MS. BARUCH: I never like to promise a court because I try to be

5 as honest as I can. I cannot promise it would be short.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Shall we finish with the witness

7 tomorrow?

8 MS. BARUCH: Yes.


10 MS. KORNER: Only on the question of Mr. Sebire, I understand

11 from --

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, I was coming to that actually.

13 MS. KORNER: -- from Ms. Baruch, that Mr. Ackerman's, I don't know

14 if consent is the right word, but acquiescence to the plan to call

15 Mr. Sebire on Friday, he is happy for him to be called in chief but would

16 prefer cross-examination to be adjourned in which case, Your Honour, we

17 are, subject to Your Honour we are content with that. We would ask that

18 the cross-examination occur on Tuesday, the 10th of June, because of

19 problems of getting a witness.

20 MS. BARUCH: Is that the original scheduled date?

21 MS. KORNER: That was the original scheduled date for him to be

22 called.

23 MS. BARUCH: Yes, thank you, and Mr. Ackerman was very pleased

24 with the compromise of the court. Thank you for suggesting it, Your

25 Honour.

Page 16607

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. That's how it will be. Mr. Sebire will

2 attend -- come over on Friday.

3 MS. KORNER: He comes down, in fact, Your Honour, as opposed to

4 over.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: For the examination-in-chief. Cross-examination

6 will be held in the course of the sitting of the 10th of June.

7 We are now handing down a decision on documents 1937, 1940, 1950.

8 Our decision is: Having looked at the documents and in conformity with

9 the previous decision and the practice of this Tribunal, that we cannot --

10 that there is nothing on the face of these documents that a priori would

11 make it incumbent on this Tribunal to declare them inadmissible at this

12 stage so they are -- they are being admitted with the usual caveat that

13 the probative value will be assigned to them as we go along, depending on

14 what the evidence will be on them, as well as on other matters.

15 The last thing is we had discussed very, very briefly, although I

16 did get an indication that this would not materialise but I want to make

17 sure, we had discussed sometime last week the possibility of working

18 extended hours next week. The week of the 2nd to the 6th. Which we are

19 very well prepared to do, in order to try and recover some lost time. I

20 know that Mr. Ackerman should be back amongst us next week. Are you in a

21 position to enlighten us on this matter, Mrs. Baruch

22 MS. BARUCH: I would ask this Court, I would implore this Court

23 that if we have to catch up time, perhaps we can do it later on but that

24 will be his first week back here. In additionally I have a question, we

25 have not been informed that we have a new case manager but the Court

Page 16608

1 stated something to that effect yesterday.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: I was informally informed.

3 MS. BARUCH: So we should expect some kind of a decision

4 communicated to us soon but as the Court knows, at this time we are

5 working without somebody who speaks B/C/S in the team. So that

6 communicating with our client has to be scheduled in advance and so I

7 would ask not, please not at this time.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Korner?

9 MS. KORNER: Well, Your Honour, as Your Honour knows, we are

10 anxious that if we have to try and complete our case by the 1st of August,

11 that we sit as much as possible. But clearly, I mean --

12 JUDGE AGIUS: I think.

13 MS. KORNER: I see --

14 JUDGE AGIUS: What Mrs. Baruch has said deserves understanding.

15 And I think for the time being, we will forget about sitting extended

16 hours next week. And we'll take the matter up again as we go along.

17 Please try tomorrow to ensure that we finish with this witness so

18 that he can return home and we can start with Mr. Sebire on Friday.

19 MS. KORNER: Your Honour, may I, while you've just dealt with the

20 exhibits, very quickly just so Your Honours can make a note of Exhibit

21 P1942 and for this reason. Your Honour will recall that in other

22 exhibits, there has been a query about who this man Milos was.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, it was mentioned by one witness. Milos was

24 identified by one witness before we broke --

25 MS. KORNER: Maybe I missed it but anyhow there is a clear

Page 16609

1 indication however, that whoever was using the pseudonym Milos was an

2 employee of the SMB, which was the security services. But you will

3 remember right at the beginning there was a lot of discussion about this.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. All right. And I think also we are told that

5 it was a pseudonym.

6 MS. KORNER: It is. It's an operative name.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't remember the name of the witness who said

8 it, to be frank with you, I don't remember.

9 So that's it. We stand adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9.00.

10 And that will be a usual sitting right through 1.45. Thank you and have a

11 nice day.

12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at

13 1.49 p.m., to be reconvened on Thursday,

14 the 29th day of May, 2003, at 9.00 a.m.