1 Tuesday, 22 April 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.08 a.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning to everyone.
6 Mr. Registrar, would you please call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning to
8 everyone in the courtroom. This is case number IT-06-90-T, the
9 Prosecutor versus Ante Gotovina et al.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
11 As I indicated yesterday, the Chamber wants to deliver, at least
12 partly deliver, the decision on the motion in limine under the Rule 73
13 motion as filed by the Gotovina Defence.
14 This is the Chamber's decision on part of Gotovina Defence's Rule
15 73 motion in limine.
16 On the 6th of March 2008, the Gotovina Defence filed a motion
17 requesting the Chamber to issue an order precluding the Prosecution from
18 introducing testimony through a proposed Prosecution expert witness on
19 whether targets selected and hit during Operation Storm were legitimate
20 military targets. The Gotovina Defence also requested the Chamber to
21 issue an order precluding the Prosecution from, and I quote, "Claiming
22 that the Prosecution's fact witnesses are experts in artillery and
23 thereby competent to tell the Trial Chamber whether particular targets
24 were civilian or military."
25 The Markac Defence joined the motion on the 25th of March. The
1 Prosecution responded on the 20th of March, asking the Chamber to dismiss
2 the motion. The Gotovina Defence requested leave to reply, and the
3 Chamber denied this request yesterday on the 21st of April.
4 The Chamber will deal with the first request in the motion at a
5 later stage. As for the second request, one of the witnesses concerned
6 is today's witness, Andrew Leslie.
7 The determination of whether a specific target is civilian or
8 military is ultimately one to be made by the Chamber. The Chamber
9 considers that there is no need for an order preventing the Prosecution
10 from describing their witnesses in any particular way, nor is there a
11 need for an order preventing the Prosecution from eliciting opinions from
12 fact witnesses.
13 That said, the Chamber reminds both parties that it is best
14 assisted by a fact witness when that witness describes what he or she has
15 personally observed, although certain testimonies do not always allow for
16 a clear distinction between facts and conclusions.
17 If the testimony of a witness contains opinions or conclusions,
18 the Chamber would expect the parties to explore the factual basis of the
19 opinion or the conclusion. That would also be the proper time for the
20 Defence to raise the matters brought up in the motion.
21 In this respect, the Chamber is aware that witnesses have
22 different backgrounds and different professional experiences which enable
23 them to observe, understand, and interpret observations in different
25 Accordingly, the Chamber rejects the second request in the
1 Gotovina Defence motion. This concludes the Chamber's decision.
2 Mr. Tieger, is the Prosecution ready to call its next witness
3 which, as I understand, is Mr. Andrew Leslie.
4 MR. TIEGER: That's correct, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Usher.
6 [The witness entered court]
7 JUDGE ORIE: Good morning, Mr. Leslie. Before you give evidence
8 in this court, the Rules of Procedure and Evidence require you to make a
9 solemn declaration that you will speak the truth, the whole truth, and
10 nothing but the truth.
11 The text is already in your hands. May I invite you to make that
12 solemn declaration.
13 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir.
14 WITNESS: ANDREW LESLIE
15 THE WITNESS: I solemnly swear that I will speak the truth, the
16 whole truth and nothing but the truth.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. Please proceed.
18 Mr. Leslie, you may be a bit surprised that I address you as
19 "Mr. Leslie." That is not a sign of disrespect for your functions, not
20 in any way.
21 This Chamber usually addresses whomever comes before this Chamber
22 in their personal capacity, and that's the only reason why I call you
23 "Mr. Leslie" where others may choose to do it in a different way.
24 Mr. Tieger, please proceed.
25 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Examination by Mr. Tieger:
2 Q. Sir, can we begin simply by having you state your name for the
3 record, please.
4 A. My name is Andrew Brook Leslie.
5 Q. And what is your current profession and position?
6 A. I am a professional soldier in the Canadian Armed Forces. My
7 current position is the Chief of Land Staff or the Commander of Canada's
9 Q. And your current rank?
10 A. I'm a Lieutenant-General.
11 Q. General Leslie, I'd like to ask you relatively quickly some
12 questions about your background. I'll attempt to do so by moving through
13 it as quickly as I can and asking you to confirm the information I
14 understand to be accurate, if, indeed, it is correct.
15 First of all, is it correct that you have been in the military
16 since 1977 when you joined the army reserves as an artilleryman?
17 A. Yes, sir.
18 Q. And while studying in England during that time, you were attached
19 to the Honourable Artillery Company?
20 A. Yes, sir.
21 Q. And in 1981, you transferred to the regular force and remained as
22 an artilleryman?
23 A. Yes, sir.
24 Q. Is it correct that you served as battery commander of artillery?
25 A. Yes, sir.
1 Q. And that eventually, you commanded the 1st Regiment Royal
2 Canadian Horse Artillery?
3 A. Yes, sir.
4 Q. You've attended various advanced courses in artillery and
5 participated in numerous international exercises involving various
6 weapons systems?
7 A. Yes, sir.
8 Q. And those involved weapons systems from varied countries such as
9 Germany, France, Britain, Norway, The Netherlands, and other countries?
10 A. Yes, sir.
11 Q. Is it correct that you -- that your entire career, up to the
12 point of your service in the Krajina in 1995, was in the artillery?
13 A. I served as a gunner or as an artillery officer. There were two
14 occasions, each of two years duration in the years leading up to my
15 service in the Krajina, where I was employed as a staff officer. So I
16 was not specifically serving the guns. I was employed as a staff officer
17 in a variety of headquarters.
18 THE INTERPRETER: Please pause between questions and answers for
19 the benefit of the interpreters. Thank you.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Leslie. The interpreters sometimes have
21 the advantage of two people speaking in different languages. Here,
22 however, you are speaking the same language; and, therefore, you're
23 invited to make a short break before answering the question, just as
24 Mr. Tieger is invited not to ask his question until after a short pause.
25 MR. TIEGER: My apologies.
1 Q. That, of course, applies equally as the Court noted, to counsel,
2 and to questions posed either by the Court or by other counsel. So we'll
3 all try to be attentive to the translation issues.
4 General Leslie, I'll return shortly to your deployment to the
5 Krajina in 1995, but I wanted to complete quickly questions about your
7 Is it correct that, in 1997, you served as the commander of the
8 1st Canadian Mechanised Brigade group and infantry or heavy combat
9 formation group where the focus was on live fire combined arms training?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Did you then become in 2000 the commander of the communications
12 brigade responsible for commanding communications field groups and
14 A. A minor correction. It was not a brigade per se, it was a
15 formation of brigade size, but yes.
16 Q. In 2002, did you become commander of --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger.
18 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Your Honour. I'm sorry.
19 I'm sorry about the speed to all those who are interpreting.
20 Q. In 2002, General Leslie, did you become commander of land force
21 central area responsible for four brigades?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And in 2003, did you become commander of the land forces in
24 Kabul; that is, commander of joint and combined international forces, the
25 majority of whom were Canadian?
1 A. I was the commander of Joint Task Force Kabul, and my second hat
2 was as deputy commander of the International Security Assistance Force.
3 Q. And in 2004, did you become deputy commander of the Canadian
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Did you study as a full time Ph.D. student for a time after that
7 at the Royal Military College?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. In 2005, did you become Director General of strategic planning
10 for the army?
11 A. For the armed forces, yes.
12 Q. And in 2006, did you become commander of the army?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. I indicated earlier that I would be returning shortly to your
15 service in the Krajina in 1995. When were you deployed to the Krajina
16 and to what part?
17 A. I was deployed on the 1st of March, 1995, and my position was as
18 Chief of Staff Sector South located in Knin.
19 Q. First of all, General Leslie, and that was -- I'm sorry. Let me
20 ask you: Chief of Staff Sector South for what organisation?
21 A. For the United Nations protection force as part of the UNCRO
22 command, as part of Sector South headquarters.
23 Q. And, in general, who was UNCRO's task or responsibilities in
24 Sector South?
25 A. UNCRO's task was to implement the will of the United Nations
1 Security Council as stated in a variety of resolutions. In essence, it
2 was to maintain the zone of separation, to provide surveillance and
3 observation on the zone of separation, to ensure that none of the warring
4 factions entered the zone of separation, and to assist the Secretary
5 General or the special representative of the Secretary General in the
6 accomplishment of his duties.
7 Q. In connection with the objective of ensuring the warring factions
8 did not penetrate the zone of separation on to the other side, was UNCRO
9 equipped to prevent all incursions irrespective of size?
10 A. No, it was not. The UNCRO forces were equipped mainly for
11 self-defence purposes. There were very little, if any, what we would
12 consider heavy weapons such as tanks, medium artillery, heavy artillery.
13 The main table of organisation and equipment for the battalions in Sector
14 South was much akin to that of light infantry battalions, and most of
15 their expertise was focused on observation, surveillance, and patrols.
16 Q. And just for clarification, although I think it's clear, on what
17 side of the zone of separation was UNCRO Sector South located?
18 A. The troops that comprised the Sector South formation were located
19 on the side of the rebel Krajina Serbs.
20 Q. Can you briefly describe your duties or responsibilities as Chief
21 of Staff for Sector South?
22 A. As Chief of Staff, I was directly responsible to my commander
23 who, when I first arrived, was Major-General Kutil from the Czech
24 Republic and, later, Brigadier General Forand from Canada. As Chief of
25 Staff, I was responsible to my commander for the efficient functioning
1 and integration of the various staff branches that made up Sector South
2 headquarters. And on his behalf, I would assist in the day-to-day
3 running of the sector, supervise the staff activities within Sector South
4 headquarters, and to him I was also responsible for the layout, the
5 security, and the efficient administration of all the elements that were
6 located in the Sector South compound.
7 On top of that, I would be assigned whatever duties the commander
8 felt appropriate.
9 Q. Can you tell us briefly the composition of UNCRO in Sector South
10 and where UNCRO units were deployed?
11 A. Headquarters Sector South was located on the southern edge of the
12 city or town of Knin. The field troops consisted of four line
13 battalions. To the north, we had the Czech battalion; to the north
14 centre, we had the Jordanian battalion; in the south centre, we had the
15 Canadian battalion; and, in the south, we had the Kenyan battalion. On
16 the left, the zone of separation was anchored to the Dinara mountains;
17 and on the right, it extended all the way up through the mountain range
18 of the Velebits and beyond.
19 Furthermore, we had a variety of support units which consisted of
20 a Czech medical company and a surgical hospital section which was located
21 with Sector South headquarters. We had a military police company, which
22 was international in composition, located in Sector South headquarters.
23 We had attached to us an Indonesian engineer organisation of about
24 company size, and as well we had a Slovak engineer company which was busy
25 throughout the sector.
1 There were some minor staff branches, specialist activities, both
2 composed of great folk from the United Nations civil service, contractual
3 employees, local employees, most of whom were located in and around
4 Sector South headquarters.
5 Q. So, to summarize, the headquarters of Sector South was located in
6 Knin, and the -- a number of the units you've described were located
7 in -- outside of Knin in various parts of Sector South as you've
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And, is it correct, General Leslie, that you remained as Chief of
11 Staff of Sector South until approximately the 9th of August when you
12 became Chief of Staff for UNCRO in Zagreb?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. I'd like to ask you a few questions, then, about Knin immediately
15 before the commencement of Operation Storm on the 4th of August. First
16 of all, General, did you live in Knin?
17 A. I did.
18 Q. And were you familiar with the town? Did you walk around it or
19 engage in recreational activity around it? Did you become familiar with
20 the town?
21 A. I was relatively familiar with the town. I lived in the top
22 floor of a two-storey building downtown. I would habitually walk to work
23 in the morning; and if it wasn't dark by the time I finished work, I
24 would often walk home. As well, when the opportunity presented itself, I
25 would engage in physical fitness activity and training, running, in and
1 around the town itself. So I was relatively familiar with the town,
2 considering I lived there for five months.
3 Q. Let me ask you quickly about the demographics of the town. Had
4 the size of the population of Knin changed in the period shortly
5 preceding Operation Storm?
6 A. When I first arrived in Knin in March, and these are only
7 estimates and not meant to sound as if they're definitive numbers, but
8 the population of Knin was probably somewhere in the order of 20.000 to
9 25.000. As tensions mounted, and it became fairly obvious that imminent
10 hostilities were looming, the population of Knin had swollen to somewhere
11 around 35.000 in the days immediately preceding the events of the 4th and
12 5th of August.
13 Q. Who -- where had the people who had increased the size of Knin
14 come from? Who were those people?
15 A. In the main, I believe they were the families of those who were
16 concerned that their villages and towns were close to the zone or closer
17 to the zone of separation and, therefore, had a higher probability of
18 risk. So the town, immediately prior to the 4th and 5th of August, was
19 populated by mainly the elderly, women, and children, as the vast
20 majority of fighting-aged males had been essentially mobilised and
21 deployed into the zone of separation in a variety of defensive positions.
22 Q. Can you describe the extent of the military presence in Knin in
23 the period preceding Operation Storm, soldiers or fixed positions or
24 other aspects of the military presence?
25 A. I would like to break that period down into two. Roughly between
1 March and May, Knin was a transit point and a collection point for the
2 fighting aged males who were to be seen in many, many parts of Knin. The
3 unemployment rate was very high, so it was very common to see large
4 numbers of soldiers or militia in and around Knin. From about mid-May
5 onwards that was no longer the case because the soldiers had been
6 deployed or the militia had been deployed into the zone of separation.
7 The military presence in Knin in the period immediately prior to
8 the 4th and 5th of August, so the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, was minimal in the sense
9 that anybody who could fight had been deployed into the zone of
10 separation, though there were the occasional staff to be seen and there
11 was the occasional uniform to be seen in Knin.
12 Q. Did soldiers come periodically to visit their families or visit
13 Knin for -- on R & R, that kind of thing?
14 A. Yes, sir. In the period prior to the end of July and very early
15 August, the -- that was often the case where small groups of soldiers or
16 militiamen could be seen down near the train yards waiting for the buses
17 to take them back to what they considered the front, but all this sort of
18 activity and movement stopped as of roughly the 1st of August as the vast
19 majority of fighting-aged males had been deployed into the zone of
21 Q. And what were you able to observe about military preparations
22 immediately prior to Storm in Knin itself?
23 A. The defensive preparations in and around Knin were essentially
24 non-existent. There were extensive defensive preparations done by the
25 Serbs on their side of the zone of separation; but in terms of the town
1 itself, none of the routes were prepared for demolitions. There was no
2 construction of fortifications or bunkers. Glass was not taken out of
3 the windows. The windows were not taped to mitigate against splinter
4 damage. There were no shells or trenches being constructed. There were
5 no berms to canalise attacking forces. There were none of those routine
6 defensive preparations that one would expect for what could potentially
7 be a major combat zone.
8 Q. Now, you've described the increase in the size of the civilian
9 population in Knin in the period preceding Operation Storm. Did you
10 observe whether any of the population of Knin had left the area in the
11 days immediately preceding Storm, that is, immediately before August 4th,
13 A. There were some elements of the local population that had left in
14 roughly the week prior to the 4th and 5th of August. How many, I don't
15 know. It did not appear to make a sizeable reduction in the mass of
16 people that I would see in and around the streets of Knin. We were aware
17 anecdotally that a variety of Serbian refugees or Serbs from Knin had
18 tried to get across the border into the Serb-controlled areas of Bosnia
19 but had been turned around and sent back to Knin. But this is anecdote;
20 it is not based on observation.
21 Q. General Leslie, how and when did you first learn that Operation
22 Storm would take place or would commence?
23 A. The first confirmed indication we had was at roughly 20 minutes
24 after 3.00 on the 4th of August when the Sector South headquarters
25 received an indication from UNCRO headquarters, our superior headquarters
1 in Zagreb, that an attack by the Croatian Forces to recapture the Krajina
2 was imminent. Over the course of the subsequent hours, there were many
3 such reports from different sources.
4 Q. And what steps were taken by UNCRO staff in response to that
6 A. I can't answer that, sir. I wasn't at UNCRO headquarters at that
8 Q. I'm sorry. I apologise for that question. What steps were taken
9 at Sector South headquarters in response to that information?
10 A. The commander and his command team were immediately advised, and
11 it was decided to implement the emergency recall plan, whose aim was to
12 get all our people who were currently living outside of the compound back
13 into the compound and from there into the bunkers. That process took
14 several hours.
15 At some point, and I can't remember the exact time without
16 referring to my notes, the recall emergency sirens were activated which
17 were very loud and could be heard throughout most of Knin as an audible
18 cue for those people that we couldn't contact by either telephone or
19 radio to get themselves back to Sector South headquarters immediately.
20 Q. General Leslie, what was your role during this process? What
21 were you doing?
22 A. My main role was in shepherding people into the bunkers and
23 making sure that, as officers and soldiers came in, they were allocated
24 to tasks. The reason why this was especially complicated is, in the
25 normal functioning of Sector South headquarters, a variety of the staff
1 branches had routine administrative work to be done. Of course, that
2 routine administrative work was no longer important, so people were
3 either in the bunkers or allocated to local security tasks or assisting
4 in staffing the operations centre where General Forand and his operations
5 staff had the duty to run the entirety of the sector.
6 So, in essence, my job was to take care of everything that wasn't
7 in the operations centre, and to ensure that the commander was free to
8 focus on running his sector, with the main focus being protection of our
9 personnel and making sure the various steps were initiated to recall our
11 Q. Do you recall when the -- when Operation Storm began, when the
12 attack commenced?
13 A. I recall that at approximately 5.02 on the morning of the 4th of
14 August, a massive artillery barrage impacted in and around Knin; and to
15 my mind, that was the commencement of the operation.
16 Q. And you say "massive artillery barrage." Can you describe the
17 nature or intensity of that barrage for the Court?
18 A. The number of detonations which was almost simultaneous indicated
19 that whatever indirect fire systems had been used had obviously been told
20 to fire at a specific moment in time. There were a multiplicity of
21 explosions into one continuous roar that lasted for a minute or two
22 followed by a pause of a minute or two, and then the cycle repeated
23 itself with the synchronicity of the explosions starting to become mixed.
24 To explain after the first couple of minutes instead of sort of a
25 continuous roar and a pause and another roar, it turned into consistent
1 shell fire .
2 Q. You say consistent shell fire after describing the rough timing
3 that you did. Can you also give the Court any indication of the relative
4 intensity of that consistent shell fire?
5 A. I would say the intensity was high between roughly 5.00 in the
6 morning of the 4th until approximately 7.00 in terms of the total number
7 of explosions, though there would be variances between when those
8 explosions occurred. So, in the first initial salvo, all the explosions
9 occurred almost at the same time. As the first hour or two wore on,
10 there were the same relative number of explosions over time, but it
11 wasn't as controlled.
12 Q. You indicated that, at approximately 7.00, there was a change in
13 the intensity of the shell fire. Can you describe for the Court the
14 nature of the change that occurred after approximately the first of
15 couple of hours?
16 A. At approximately 7.00, or around approximately 7.00, the fire
17 diminished markedly; and instead of having explosions all over the city
18 of a consistent nature, the explosions and shell fire was grouped across
19 specific regions of the city which varied, wherein you'd have a shell
20 detonating, a minute or two or three would go by, another shell
21 detonating 200 to 300 metres away from where the first one went off.
22 That process would be repeated several times. Then you'd have four,
23 five, or six shells landing fairly tightly grouped together.
24 This process would be repeated essentially throughout most of the
25 day at a lessened intensity as compared to what happened between 5.00 and
1 7.00 in the morning.
2 Q. Now, this process you've just described, with a shell and then
3 another shell and then a group of shells, were you familiar with that
4 process; and if so, can you tell us its significance?
5 A. I am familiar with the process. And in my opinion, the
6 significance is that after the additional -- the original opening
7 barrage, which appeared to be random and relatively evenly distributed
8 across the entirety of the town, the Croatian gunners were then engaging
9 in what is known as target grid procedure, wherein a battery of guns,
10 which can be two, three, four, five, six guns grouped together, would be
11 adjusted by visual observation on to a specific target.
12 The process is one gun fires of that grouping; the visual
13 observation correction is then made to move that shell; corrections are
14 then computed and passed to the other guns; another round is fired from
15 the original gun to adjust that specifically on to where your target
16 might lie. Then once the observer is relatively satisfied that his one
17 gun is in the target area, because artillery is an area weapons system,
18 or certainly was in those days, then all the guns of the battery would be
19 fired at that single point; and therein you'd have three, four, five, or
20 six detonations in relatively close proximity both in time and space.
21 It's a process I've seen hundreds of times in a variety of
22 training exercises in Canada and other artillery ranges throughout NATO.
23 Q. So that's the process of directing the weaponry toward a
24 particular target?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Now, I want to ask you some questions about your whereabouts
2 during the course of August 4th and what you observed during that time.
3 First of all, let me ask you, with respect to the -- starting at
4 during the time when efforts were being made to get personnel to safety
5 shortly before and shortly after the attack commenced, what were you
6 doing, where were you, and what were you able to observe?
7 A. By 3.30, I -- 3.30 in the morning on the 4th of August, I was in
8 my office. I don't think I returned to my office until around 6.00,
9 though I can't be sure. The vast majority of time between 3.30 and, say,
10 5.30 was spent making sure people were organised to move towards the
11 appropriate bunkers, to populate the operations centres with people as
12 they became available, to make sure that the Sector South security staff
13 had started the process of dispatching vehicles to pick people up, and to
14 try and control the rather frenzied activity of people coming in to the
15 camp from their residences in and around Knin, realising that
16 such-and-such and so-and-so had not made it in yet and trying to go back
17 out and pick them up, which was a relatively complicated process.
18 Q. During the course of what you've described as the initial intense
19 barrage in the first couple of hours of the attack, were you able to see
20 from any of the positions that you were in where shells landing?
21 A. From the moment of the initial barrage until approximately 6.00,
22 I do not recall having any time to actually watch where the shell fire
23 was landing. It was dark, and there were many other issues which
24 prevented me from doing so.
25 At around 6.00, not precisely, I joined several others in -- on a
1 balcony just opposite my office on, I believe, the 3rd floor of Sector
2 South headquarters for a period of time, not long, and was able to
3 observe the artillery fire, which as of around 6.00 had no discernible
4 pattern, and it was unknown to any of us as to what targets were actually
5 being engaged because of the random nature of the distribution of fire.
6 So I would - pardon my long-windedness - I would say that the
7 first time I was able to actually observe the fire was for a brief period
8 at approximately 6.00 in the morning.
9 Q. What area of Knin were you able to observe during the first
10 couple of hours, during the time you described observing the shelling?
11 A. Sector South headquarters is located on the southern edge of
12 Knin, and my balcony was facing north. I would say that in terms of
13 direct observation, you could see somewhere close to 1500 metres before
14 the first row of buildings became evident, and then you could see larger
15 buildings in the foreground and middle ground. The view was blocked on
16 the left by the castle and on the right by a small knoll or terrain
17 feature. I would say the observation over the southern third of the city
18 in terms of looking at the roof tops and the larger structures was quite
20 Q. You indicated that the artillery fire which you observed had no
21 discernible pattern. Did you see any efforts to correct fire in the
22 manner you described before; that is, so that particular targets could be
24 A. No, sir, not at that time.
25 Q. Was the shell fire that you observed, although I understand you
1 described it earlier as being spread out over a wide area, was it grouped
2 in any particular part of Knin, either the downtown area, outside area?
3 A. In the main --
4 MR. KEHOE: Excuse me. I hate to interrupt, Judge, but I do
5 believe the witness said he couldn't see most of the areas that we're
6 describing. I mean, if he's talking about a specific area that the
7 witness observed, that will be fine; but I just take that with the caveat
8 of what the witness just explained.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Well, he described clearly in what respect his view
10 was limited. Then I take it that Mr. Tieger's questions are now about
11 that what he could see.
12 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour. My apologies.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
14 MR. TIEGER:
15 Q. General, you can answer the question. Do you need me to repeat
17 A. No, sir, I don't. Thank you. I have it here.
18 The -- when observing shell fire, and this was the case in Knin,
19 I'd like to point out, if I may, that it was a very rare occasion when
20 we, in Sector South, actually saw a round detonate on the ground. The
21 rounds would be falling in and amongst the buildings, and what you would
22 see breaking the roof line was the ball of grey dust, smoke, and debris
23 being thrown up by the force of the explosion. So, although, for
24 example, we may have had excellent visibility out to 1.000, 2.000, in
25 certain cases more metres, you could see where shells were landing in
1 terms of a rough area by the fact that the debris cloud of grey smoke
2 would break the roof line.
3 So, in that context, the majority of the shells appeared to be
4 grouped in what I will call the centre of the town, but there was fire at
5 that time essentially all over the place.
6 Q. Now, after the -- I asked you earlier about the first couple of
7 hours of the attack during which you had earlier described the barrage
8 that took place. After the first couple of hours, did you have the
9 opportunity to observe the shelling that was taking place; and, if so,
10 from what position or positions?
11 A. From about 7.00 onwards, the day was almost a constant cycle of
12 moving between the bunkers, the front gate, the perimeter of the
13 compound, up to the Czech medical facility just below the helipad, back
14 to the OP centre to check in; and then the cycle was repeated almost
15 continuously. There were no staff branches or activities for me to
16 coordinate, and General Forand, quite properly, was in the operations
17 centre running his sector.
18 So most of my day was spent outside, and a significant portion of
19 that period was spent --
20 JUDGE ORIE: If you would not mind, there might be some confusion
21 as to the question. The last line of the question was, "and if so, from
22 what position or positions?"
23 Now, Mr. Tieger, I do not know whether you had in mind from what
24 position or positions the witness observed or from what position or what
25 positions the shelling took place.
1 I got the impression that you had the latter in mind.
2 MR. TIEGER: No. Thank you, Your Honour, for that opportunity to
3 clarify. My question was about the opportunity to see the shelling that
4 was taking place; and if so, where the witness was when he observed this.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Then I was listening with a wrong ear.
6 Please proceed.
7 THE WITNESS: So, sir, I would say it varied between my office
8 window -- sorry, my office balcony which was actually, to be accurate, on
9 the opposite side of the hallway from my office facing towards the town;
10 and at other vantage points inside Sector South compound, probably the
11 best position of observation was in the area at the helipad, which is the
12 highest point in the Sector South compound headquarters.
13 MR. TIEGER:
14 Q. Let me then turn to the question that the Presiding Judge thought
15 I was asking at the time. Where did you observe the shelling taking
16 place; that is, where were the shells landing?
17 A. Between 6.00 and 7.00, sir, I cannot precisely specify where the
18 centre of mass of shells was landing because as mentioned, it was, from
19 what I could see, all over the place.
20 From about 7.00 onwards, it was much easier to define. The mass
21 of shells were landing on mainly residential areas grouped in the centre
22 of town, but that did not mean that the smaller groupings of buildings on
23 the outskirts were immune.
24 Q. Earlier, you described the observational range of what you could
25 see from the balcony. Were you able to see more or less of the town from
1 the other positions in the compound during the course of the day when you
2 were making the observations you just described?
3 A. As you walked up the hill from Sector South headquarters, past
4 the kitchen facilities and in the area of the Czech hospital unit, you
5 could see much more.
6 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I'd like to ask Mr. Registrar to call
7 up 65 ter number 403.
8 Q. General, you should see, on a screen in front of you, 65 ter
9 number 403, a document which is an UNCRO document. At the top, we see
10 and headed, "Protest attacks on innocent civilians and UN installations,"
11 and it's signed by General Forand?
12 A. I do.
13 Q. Are you familiar with this document, General Leslie?
14 A. I am.
15 Q. Did you -- were you aware of this document on August 4th?
16 A. I was.
17 Q. When did you first become aware that such a document was going to
18 be prepared or sent?
19 A. I believe it was at some time prior to noon. I honestly can't
20 recall at what point during that rather frenzied series of activities the
21 document itself was crafted. To the best of my recollection, it was
22 crafted by an officer, an excellent officer called Lieutenant-Colonel
23 Shaun Tymchuk; and it was based on the reports that had been given to the
24 area commander in his operations centre from his various battalions on
25 the line and also from what he himself could see and comment on vis-a-vis
1 Knin. So I believe it first originated some time prior to noon on the
3 Q. As Chief of Staff, were you contacted about the intention to send
4 this or consulted in connection with the anticipation of preparing and
5 sending this document?
6 A. I was aware of it. I think the idea originated with General
7 Forand, and I had very little input into its content. I did not -- I
8 cannot claim any credit for writing it. I was aware that it was being
9 sent; however, it was being sent out of the operations centre.
10 Q. What did you understand the purpose of this document to be?
11 A. To achieve an immediate cessation of the indirect fire artillery
12 attacks on not only Knin but the other towns mentioned, and to also
13 secure an immediate withdrawal of the combatant forces from the zone of
15 Q. How was this protest letter to be provided -- well, first of all,
16 to whom was the letter sent or the protest letter sent?
17 A. The process letter was sent by the operations centre and also by
18 the senior liaison officer. The traditional route - and I believe that's
19 the route that occurred with this document, though, once again, I wish to
20 point out I was not in the operations centre - was via the Croatian army
21 liaison officer who was responsible for interactions between General
22 Gotovina's organisation and Sector South, and this individual was --
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe --
24 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry.
25 MR. KEHOE: I apologize, Judge.
1 MR. TIEGER: I'll clarify.
2 MR. KEHOE: If I may, I think we're in the area, Judge, based on
3 his initial answer, and I would think Your Honour was talking to the
4 witness about what he knew and what he observed. Quite clearly, from his
5 answer, he does not know what happened to this letter.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, perhaps you might explore where the
7 witness said, "and I believe that's the route that occurred with this
8 document," what factual knowledge is available and what's the source of
9 this knowledge.
10 Please proceed.
11 MR. TIEGER: Absolutely, Your Honour. I was, in fact, going to
12 do that.
13 Q. General Leslie, you've indicated the traditional route for
14 communicating such a document to the Croatian army. In this particular
15 case, can you tell us what you know about what happened with this
17 A. Yes, sir. It was also communicated to UNCRO headquarters, UNPF
18 headquarters, it was distributed to the CIVPOL organisation, the UNMO
19 organisation, all with a view to ensuring that it made its way as
20 expeditiously as possible to the appropriate Croatian authorities.
21 Q. And do you have any information about whether the document was
22 received by Croatian army authorities?
23 A. I'm told that it was, but I have no personal knowledge of its
24 receipt by the Croatian authorities.
25 Q. And I may have jumped a step; and that is, in connection with
1 what you described as the traditional route to get such documents to
2 Croatian army authorities, to General Gotovina, or other persons to whom
3 such documents were directed, can you describe what that traditional
4 route was?
5 A. Sir, the traditional route was twofold. One was via the senior
6 liaison officer to Captain of Marine Lukovic, dealing specifically with
7 General Gotovina's fighting formations. Also, at the same time, a copy
8 would be sent via the United Nations Military Observer organisation to
9 their liaison officer who was also with the Croatian army liaison team.
10 The third traditional route was via UNCRO headquarters where, when such
11 documents were sent or received, they were then taken across to the
12 senior Croatian army liaison officer, a gentleman by the name of General
13 Plestina, I believe his name was, who essentially replicated the
14 functions of Captain of Marine Lukovic but one level higher.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, one of the previous answers of the
16 witness was, "I'm told that it was, but I have no personal knowledge of
17 its receipt by the Croatian authorities."
18 Could you tell us who told you this?
19 THE WITNESS: One of the big concerns that General Forand had
20 that afternoon and evening was making sure that the protest letter was
21 widely distributed; and so I believe, though I cannot state with
22 certainty, sir, that Lieutenant-Colonel Tymchuk informed that OPs update
23 conference in the evening of the 5th -- no, the 4th, that the letter had
24 been sent to the UNMOs and had been sent to the KLO staff, the Croatian
25 Army Liaison Officer staff, headed by Captain of Marine Lukovic. Colonel
1 Norris Pettis, who is the Chief of Staff UNCRO, also confirmed to me that
2 a copy had been sent to General Plestina that evening.
3 JUDGE ORIE: My question, of course, was primarily concerned not
4 on sending but on receiving.
5 Could you tell us whether he also informed you about the letter
6 not only being sent but also delivered or receipt confirmed or more
7 information about the receiving side.
8 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, I'm sorry, I can cannot recall such --
9 JUDGE ORIE: If you cannot recall, then please tell us such.
10 Mr. Tieger, please proceed.
11 MR. TIEGER:
12 Q. You mentioned a Croatian army officer named Lukovic, Captain of
13 Marine. Did you know him, and did you ever speak with him about this
14 protest letter?
15 A. Yes, sir. Captain Lukovic, very kindly, drove me out of Knin on
16 the 9th of August, and we had an opportunity to exchange a variety of
17 ideas. He was well aware of the letter; but to be absolutely precise, I
18 cannot recall discussing with him whether or not he received it or
19 whether or not he acknowledged receiving it on the 4th of August. He was
20 certainly aware of the letter. He was aware of its contents, aware of
21 its significance. He had seen it, but I cannot recall him saying: I saw
22 this letter at such-and-such a time, at such-and-such a place, on
23 such-and-such a date.
24 Q. Do you recall the context in which the discussion about the
25 letter took place? In other words, were you talking about such letters
1 generally? Were you talking about this letter? Were you talking about
2 the fact that it had been sent on the 4th?
3 A. Sir, I cannot remember the trigger or the context of the
4 conversation. I knew him well enough to speak frankly to him. We shared
5 a passion for boats. He was not a friend, but I -- we knew each other
6 well enough to speak frankly. I cannot recall the context in which this
7 letter was discussed.
8 Q. Now, let me return to --
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, are you leaving the letter at this
11 MR. TIEGER: It's all yours, Your Honour.
12 JUDGE ORIE: I wondered, just trying to, first of all, on our
13 screen, we see not the whole of the letter at this moment, because the
14 lower part gives some information about telefax exchange, apparently.
15 I do not know how it is translated in B/C/S. I see some
16 handwriting before "August," and this is off some letters I'm not able to
17 decipher or it stands for "04." Now, I wonder what "necitko" means in
18 the translation. Is that illegible; if so, are we then supposed to
19 consider the "04", or whatever it may be, also as illegible?
20 This is not a real translation issue, but rather a legibility
21 issue which perhaps we could -- I don't know whether there is a common
22 understanding of the parties about what is handwritten before "August."
23 At least those who are consulting the translation certainly will not
24 understand that it could possibly be interpreted as "04," because it's
25 presented to them as illegible.
1 MR. TIEGER: Well, Your Honour, I'm not going to dispute the
2 translation of "necitko." I can't really see a basis for any ambiguity
3 about what's written there, but --
4 JUDGE ORIE: Is there any disagreement between the parties
5 whether the handwritten portion - where I think there would not be a lot
6 of dispute - is about "04"?
7 MR. KEHOE: Well, there is many disputes about "04" which we will
8 explore thoroughly; however, Judge, I do ask Your Honour to scroll down
9 and read the fax line at the bottom.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's totally different. That's the 12th,
11 isn't it?
12 MR. KEHOE: Yes, it is.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Yes, of course, that may have triggered my
14 curiosity in this respect. Yes. You see I don't have to even consult
16 Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
17 MR. TIEGER:
18 Q. General Leslie, one more question before we leave this document.
19 There are a number of towns listed in the first sentence other than Knin;
20 that is, Drnis, Medak, and others. Do you know whether this was an
21 exhaustive list of the towns about which General Forand and other senior
22 members of Sector South headquarters had information?
23 A. No, sir. The intent was not for this list to be exhaustive. It
24 was meant to be representative; and the urgency of getting the document
25 out, with an attempt to stop the artillery fire and to get the Croats to
1 withdraw from the zone of separation, was such that it was felt best to
2 send this document as is. That was part of the discussions that took
3 place when the idea of the document originated.
4 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I would be leaving the document at this
5 moment. Perhaps that can be - I don't know how the Court wishes to
6 handle it - but I, otherwise, ask that it be marked and tendered.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Are there any objections against admission of this
9 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour. There is an objection to this. I
10 mean, the position on this letter -- there's no evidence this letter was
11 ever received by General Gotovina. An exact duplicate of this letter was
12 sent to another sector to General Norac, which, in fact, General Norac
13 did, in fact, receive, but there is no such documentation reflecting that
14 this letter went to General Gotovina at any time. I will get into it at
15 cross, Judge, and explore those issues with Your Honour; and at this
16 point, I just ask Your Honour to --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Is this an admissibility issue or is it probative
18 value and weight to be given to it? I mean, the witness has testified
19 about this letter; and although he tells us that he has no personal
20 knowledge of the way in which it was delivered and to whom it was
21 delivered exactly, at the same time he speaks about other people in a
22 conversation to be aware of this letter. So, to that extent, it comes to
23 my mind that it's rather weight than admissibility.
24 MR. KEHOE: If I just briefly may comment, Judge, and I
25 understand Your Honour's inclination in this regard.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
2 MR. KEHOE: If someone writes a letter and there's no foundation
3 that that letter is received by the recipient, then it is not of any
4 probative value. Clearly, the Prosecution has not established, and they
5 could have established by bringing some of these other people in, that
6 this letter was, in fact, received by General Gotovina. With that
7 caveat, it -- I submit to Your Honour that there is no probative value to
8 this letter at this juncture because there is absolutely no evidence from
9 this witness or the Prosecution that the recipient received it.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber decides that the letter will be admitted
12 into evidence.
13 Mr. Registrar.
14 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P83, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE ORIE: P83 is admitted into evidence.
16 Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
17 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Q. General Leslie, you've referred, in connection with that letter,
19 to reports that Sector South headquarters was receiving from UNCRO units
20 throughout the sector. Can you just describe generally what information,
21 to the extent you haven't already done so, Sector South was obtaining
22 during the course of the day from the UNCRO units deployed throughout
23 Sector South?
24 A. Yes, sir. All four line battalions that were in the zone of
25 separation reported, more or less, a certain degree of consistency in the
1 events that happened on the 4th, starting with artillery fires on Serbian
2 Defence positions in the zone of separation, artillery fires on Serbian
3 artillery positions and troops concentrations just behind the zone of
4 separation, artillery fires on large numbers of residential communities
5 within range of the zone of separation, and then Croatian army forces
6 advancing into the zone of separation and, in certain cases, occupying,
7 capturing, disarming of United Nations personnel and seizing of their
9 Q. General Leslie, did you travel outside the Sector South
10 headquarters compound on the 4th?
11 A. Yes, I did.
12 Q. And can you tell the Court on how many occasions and what the
13 nature of that travel was?
14 A. A couple times mounted; a couple of times dismounted. The
15 mounted were sometime shortly after 6.00 for a very short duration where,
16 in the controlled chaos, that was the front gate. There were some issues
17 with UN CIVPOL who were not necessarily on the same recall list as the
18 Sector South United Nations civil staff, and there was a demand for
19 someone who knew where a street was close to the train yard. So I hopped
20 aboard that vehicle, the duration of the trip was about 15 minutes,
21 nothing significant to report. Picked up three people, none of them UN
22 CIVPOL, and came back.
23 The second trip was at some point during the day. There was some
24 bodies outside to the right, and some people were interested in
25 investigating them and putting them in bags. So I just went outside to
1 put a stop to that.
2 Then that evening, I went to the Serbian army liaison detachment
3 to discuss some issues. To the best of my recollection, those were my
4 sojourns outside of Sector South compound on the 4th.
5 Q. The Serbian army liaison detachment, where was that located?
6 Where was the building or structure where that was?
7 A. I call it the RSK headquarters, which is not the same as the
8 Ministry of Defence. So it's on the main street, or you get to it via
9 going to the main street before you get to a traffic circle, well before.
10 It's on the left-hand side offset by about 50 metres, and -- well, there
11 we go.
12 Q. All right. And what did you observe when you got to the RSK
14 A. The building I call the RSK headquarters was damaged. It had
15 some shell fragmentation. It was in the evening of the 4th, and there
16 was a dead body, with some fatigue bottom halves, just tucked away in the
17 approach as you go up the steps. It was essentially deserted by the time
18 I got there.
19 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I don't know when the --
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I'm looking at the clock. Would this be a
21 suitable moment for a break.
22 MR. TIEGER: This is fine, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Then I first would like to ask the usher to escort
24 Mr. Leslie out of the courtroom. We'll have a break, and we'll resume in
25 approximately 25 minutes, Mr. Leslie.
1 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir.
2 [The witness stands down]
3 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, for scheduling purposes, I think this
4 witness was initially indicated for six and a half hours viva voce which,
5 from what I understood, is not your estimate at this moment anymore. Is
6 that correct?
7 MR. TIEGER: That is correct, Your Honour. I've attempted to
8 stay in close contact both with court personnel and the Defence in
9 connection with the timing. I certainly anticipate finishing in the next
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. This would mean that it's three hours. Then
12 we discussed before this trial started one-to-one ratio Prosecution and
13 Defence teams. Since almost all of the evidence until now was presented
14 under Rule 92 ter, we could not follow that suggestion. It's also not my
15 suggestion that we would follow a one-to-one ratio in relation to this
16 witness, which appears to be a very important witness for the Prosecution
17 and for the Defence as well. Nevertheless, I'd like to know whether the
18 Defence considers it possible, if Mr. Tieger would finish today after
19 approximately three hours, whether we could finish this witness by
20 Thursday. That is a little bit more than two days, that would be a ratio
21 of approximately two-and-a-quarter to one.
22 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour. If we are talking about finishing
23 this witness on Thursday, I do believe we can do that. I have not
24 consulted --
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I'm talking about the whole of the Defence;
1 that means all Defence teams.
2 MR. KEHOE: On that score, Judge, I haven't discussed that with
3 my colleagues. I do believe that it is doable to finish by Thursday.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I see Mr. Kay nodding, although cautiously,
6 MR. KAY: Yes. We await to hear further evidence, of course.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
8 MR. KAY: We don't know what's going to be said by the witness.
9 It's viva voce and so that goes into the scale.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kuzmanovic.
11 MR. KUZMANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Being third has its
12 advantages and disadvantages. And in this case, we will talk among
13 ourselves, and I'm hopeful that we can get done by Thursday depending on
14 how things go obviously.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. As matters stand to this moment, then the
16 Chamber, for scheduling purposes, will continue to think in terms of
17 finishing the witness cross-examination by Thursday. Then, of course,
18 there is still a question of how many questions the Bench would still
19 have and how much time would be needed in re-examination.
20 But I invite all parties to do their utmost best to see whether
21 we do not have to recall the witness at a later stage because I do
22 understand that he's available up to and including Thursday but not on
23 Friday anymore. Mr. Tieger, is that well understood.
24 MR. TIEGER: I will double -- that is my current understanding
25 but I will check on that, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Could you also perhaps check how flexible that is.
2 Usually questions of the Bench do not take that much time, but in the end
3 they may take time during the examination.
4 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I know Mr. Misetic wanted to say
5 something. But just by way of clarification, and I don't want to take
6 any more time than necessary, I may conclude the examination not taking
7 the full session. I wasn't intending to indicate that.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic.
9 MR. MISETIC: I apologise for speaking out of turn and ask your
10 permission to address one administrative matter, if I may.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please do so.
12 MR. MISETIC: We received an e-mail this morning from the
13 registrar that there is an issue with respect to courtroom 2 tomorrow and
14 the number of staff that can be present in the courtroom for it. That
15 may be an issue for us because we have several people working on this
16 witness who we would need in court to assist us during the
17 cross-examination. So if the Court could keep that in mind and perhaps
18 consider during the break how we resolve this issue.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. It's a practical issue.
20 MR. MISETIC: Sorry. Thursday is courtroom II.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We'll have a look at it and then see with the
22 assistance of the registry how we can resolve the matter.
23 We resume at 11.00.
24 --- Recess taken at 10.35 a.m.
25 --- On resuming at 11.04 a.m.
1 [The witness entered court]
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Misetic, Mr. Kehoe, the Chamber is considering
3 solutions for Thursday and we are exploring options and see how it works
4 and we'll certainly find a solution one way or the other.
5 Then Mr. Tieger.
6 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
7 Q. General Leslie, do you recall when the shelling ceased, if it
8 did, on the 4th of August, 1995 in Knin?
9 A. Sir, to the best of my recollection, the shelling almost ceased
10 by nightfall; but to the best of my recollection, there was still the
11 occasional explosion at night.
12 Q. Did you become aware of what was happening with the civilian
13 population in Knin either during the course of the day or during the
14 evening of August 4th?
15 A. During the main body of the day from 6.45 until the evening, I
16 was not personally out and about in the town of Knin. So my information
17 is based on reports from others who were -- who were out and about and
18 reporting back to either the operations centre or myself, as the Chief of
19 Staff, in terms of trying to ensure that all our people had been
21 You could see just beside Sector South headquarters is one of the
22 main routes from the zone of separation into Knin; and starting in the
23 afternoon, an almost endless stream of vehicles carrying males dressed in
24 fatigues, some not, were coming into Knin, and everywhere there were
25 reports of civilians leaving starting in the early afternoon.
1 Q. Did you, yourself, see vehicles coming into and/or leaving Knin
2 in the latter part of the day on August 4th?
3 A. More towards evening and dark fall, sir. When I went -- popped
4 up to see the Serbian liaison officer, who was actually not there when I
5 arrived, at what I call the RSK headquarters, there was still significant
6 numbers of people on the road starting -- continuing the move out; and as
7 well, you could see from the helipad an almost endless string of lights
8 of vehicles climbing the road on the other side of Knin up into the
9 mountains to the north and west.
10 Q. What kind of vehicles are we -- did you observe? What kind of
11 vehicles are we talking about?
12 A. At close range, right by Sector South headquarters, there was a
13 wide range of vehicles, mainly trucks carrying people. We call them
14 putt-putt tractors. Those are essentially large farm implements with a
15 wooden cargo carrying compartment on the back, carrying people. The
16 occasional tank would grind its way back, very rare, covered in soldiers,
17 but not many; and also people on foot walking by the headquarters heading
18 down towards Knin.
19 The road that I could see from -- when it got truly dark that you
20 could see from the helipad, it was too far away to discern the types of
21 vehicles that were actually leaving.
22 Q. And you said these tractors with wooden compartment on the back
23 carrying people, what kind of people?
24 A. It varied, sir. At times, there would be soldiers - this was
25 towards nightfall - soldiers on the back of these cargo pallets. At
1 other times, soldiers mixed in with the women and children, the elderly,
2 so the whole gamut.
3 Q. And just to be clear, were these people coming into Knin and
4 staying there?
5 A. No. They were coming into Knin to, what we later found out, was
6 to pick up their families or their possessions and to escape via that
7 road that I referred to earlier to the north and west.
8 Q. And the stream of vehicles you talked about, were they,
9 therefore, passing through Knin on their way elsewhere?
10 A. I -- once they disappeared from view, I have no knowledge of
11 whether or not the same vehicles exited, but it is a logical assumption
12 that they would not abandon a vehicle considering gasoline was in such
13 short supply.
14 Q. Now, before the next morning, did UNCRO Sector South receive
15 information concerning the possibility or anticipation of further
16 shelling the next day?
17 A. Yes, sir. This information originated from the OPs centre. I
18 believe UNCRO headquarters had relayed such to Sector South headquarters.
19 I can't recall the exact time that we were made aware that essentially
20 the day's activities of the 4th would be repeated on the 5th, but it was
21 common knowledge certainly by midnight or so on the 4th that we could
22 expect another intense barrage at 5.00 on the 5th.
23 Q. And what happened the next morning?
24 A. With true military precision, at 5.00 on the 5th, there was
25 another intense barrage which replicated in almost every fashion exactly
1 the circumstances the 4th; in other words, between 5.00 and roughly 7.00,
2 intense barrage which appeared to be all over the place.
3 Q. And after 7.00?
4 A. After 7.00, the conditions of the 4th were replicated. The
5 barrage diminished markedly, but it was still of a medium intensity and
6 remained such until around 10.30 or 11.00. The same target grid
7 procedure that I referred to in my earlier testimony was replicated from
8 about 7.00 until 10.30 or 11.00.
9 Q. Did you have an opportunity to observe the shelling of the 5th;
10 and, if so, was it from the same or different places than you had
11 observed on the 4th?
12 A. It was essentially the same places that I had observed on the
13 4th, with the exception that I did not get up to the helipad from
14 about -- I did not get up to the helipad at all on the morning of
15 the 5th. By the time I got up to the helipad on the 5th, the shelling
16 had ceased. It was later that afternoon.
17 Q. Did you leave the Sector South headquarters compound on the
18 morning of the 5th?
19 A. I did.
20 Q. And for what purpose?
21 A. We had been asked by a Serbian physician to assist in the
22 evacuation of approximately 30 to 40 critical patients at the Knin
23 hospital, and I had volunteered to assemble a team of initially six
24 vehicles to proceed to the hospital to assist in that evacuation. We
25 first became aware of this request around 7.00, 7.30 in the morning, and
1 we left the compound about an hour and a half later.
2 Q. During the course of that trip from the Sector South headquarters
3 to the hospital and back, can you tell the Court what, if anything, you
4 saw or experienced?
5 A. The journey was -- took approximately 15 to 20 minutes. We
6 started with six vehicles. We were -- initially, my vehicle was going to
7 lead, but at some point the Serbian ambulance cut in front, I think
8 during one of the moments of shell fire. There were two significant
9 periods of shell fire en route. One was in the area of the train yards
10 before you got to the main traffic circle, quite close to the vehicles,
11 to the extent that they were rocked by the blast.
12 The second, which was in the area of -- or prior to the north
13 Dalmatian corps headquarters, after the traffic circle. En route to the
14 town, the town appeared to be, from what I could see, essentially
15 deserted. There were dead along the route, numbering somewhere in the
16 order of 15 to 20 scattered hither and yon, along that main route,
17 occasionally up the side street. There was an enormous debris field
18 along that route of baggage and suit cases and even furniture until we
19 got to the turn-off which left Knin to the north and west, at which point
20 the route became relatively clear.
21 Q. You mentioned seeing dead along the route to the hospital. Did
22 you see any bodies or injured persons upon arrival at the hospital?
23 A. On arrival at the hospital, there were large quantities of dead,
24 men, women, and children, stacked in the hospital corridors in a pile. A
25 makeshift room on the back rear floor was being used as a morgue. There
1 was no power, and the medical staff had departed with the exception of
2 one male nurse who had obviously stayed there while the Serbian physician
3 came and got us.
4 There were approximately 30 to 40 patients of which 25 or so were
5 in absolutely critical condition, a mix of the elderly women, occasional
6 fighting-age male, and -- yeah.
7 Q. While --
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, could we ask the witness "large
9 quantities of dead, men, women, and children, stacked in the
10 hospital ..." What do I have to understand approximately by large
11 quantities? Where you are saying "30 to 40 patients, 25 in absolutely
12 critical condition," what about the dead bodies.
13 THE WITNESS: Sir, it's very difficult to estimate. I would say
14 the number was no lower than 30 and probably no higher than 50 or 60.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. In the tens of?
16 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
18 MR. TIEGER:
19 Q. While at the hospital on the morning of the 5th, did you see
20 signs of shell damage or observe any shelling?
21 A. I did not observe any signs of shell damage when we pulled up to
22 the hospital, though I was not looking that closely. While we were
23 checking the rooms, a shell landed close enough to punch out several of
24 the windows. But the shell did not hit the hospital, some of the
25 splinters did. I think it was localised. I do not recall any other
1 damage, apart from those windows, those few windows being knocked out.
2 Q. Just to be clear, is it your view that there was an effort to
3 destroy the hospital or not?
4 A. No, sir. I would argue the reverse. I think the Croatian
5 authorities or the Croatian Army took extraordinary pains not to engage
6 the hospital.
7 Q. While at the hospital, did you see any military vehicle?
8 A. Yes. There was a tank at about 400 metres, and this is when we
9 left which was around 10.00 or 10.30. Probably closer to 10.30, a tank
10 about 400 -- approximately 400 metres to the north and east. And to be
11 honest, the only reason we noticed it, because we were very busy trying
12 to load the patients into the armoured vehicles, is that it fired into
13 Knin, one round.
14 Q. And were you able to tell from what forces or with what forces
15 that tank was -- that's an awkwardly phrased question.
16 Can you tell whether that was a Serbian tank or a Croatian tank
17 or any other kind of tank?
18 A. No, I could not.
19 Q. About what time did you return from the hospital, if you recall?
20 A. Approximately 11.00, but it's a very approximate time frame, and
21 we then unloaded the patients and I had to help deal with the issue of
22 the displaced persons and creating space for the patients to be treated
23 at the Czech hospital.
24 Q. I believe you indicated yesterday that the shelling ceased around
25 the time that -- on August 5th, around the time that the Croatian army
1 entered Knin --
2 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, I'm a bit puzzled by the "yesterday"
3 reference. "I believe you indicated yesterday ..."
4 MR. TIEGER: The previous session. I'm sorry, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, please proceed.
6 MR. TIEGER:
7 Q. Well, let me ask that in a different way for clarification.
8 Do you recall about when the Croatian army entered Knin?
9 A. I believe it was at approximately 11.00, but they first entered
10 Knin - I now know, I did not know at the time - from the north. So the
11 lead elements, we think, of the Croatian army were in Knin at around
13 Q. And I'm sorry to jump and a bit, but I realise looking at the
14 transcript that there's one question in connection with the hospital that
15 I didn't ask you. You indicated you saw the tank about 400 metres from
16 the hospital fire one round into Knin. Did you see any artillery fire or
17 other fire directed at the tank?
18 A. No, I did not. And there were rounds landing when we arrived at
19 the hospital. There were artillery rounds landing 400, 500, 600 metres
20 from the hospital to the north and the west.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, your question included that one shell
22 was fired. I do not see that in 42, 18 where the witness said "The only
23 reason we noticed it, because we were very busy trying to load the
24 patients into the armoured vehicles, is that it fired ..." --
25 I'm sorry. I didn't read it carefully. Please proceed.
1 MR. TIEGER:
2 Q. General, after the Croatian army forces entered Knin, did UNCRO
3 personnel monitor what was happening in Knin?
4 A. As the Croatian forces entered Knin, General Forand had decided
5 to take a column of vehicles into town, and he encountered the lead
6 elements of the Croatian army coming south while he was going north and I
7 believe that time was at approximately 11.30.
8 General Forand and his party were then escorted by the Croatian
9 army back to the compound. Prior to him arriving back at the compound at
10 around 11.15ish, though these times are very approximate, the Croatian
11 army had come up to the front gates of the Sector South compound and
12 refused to allow us out. So we could not monitor what was taking place
13 downtown, with that brief period of exception for when General Forand was
14 actually intermixed with the lead elements of the Croatian army.
15 Q. And was that refusal enforced in any way?
16 A. We tested it. I led a small team out to the crossroads about 150
17 metres to the left after ignoring the Croatian infantry who were at our
18 front gate. We were then essentially herded back to the Sector South
19 compound by a few tanks, and a tank parked itself at our front gate
20 thereby not allowing egress.
21 Q. Did that tank or any other military force remain at the compound
22 to prevent UNCRO personnel from leaving the compound?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. What was the -- no, that's the problem with asking a compound
25 question. Let's focus on the tank for the moment.
1 Where was the tank placed? How was it placed?
2 A. The tank was placed with its front right up against the gate with
3 the muzzle poking through the gate aimed directly into the compound. It
4 was surrounded or was flanked on both sides by significant numbers of
5 what I assumed to be Croatian infantry; and within 15 to 20 minutes of
6 the block being put in place, a Croatian colonel, I believe, showed up,
7 and we exchanged points of view.
8 Q. And just to be clear on the exchange of points of view, did you
9 demand on behalf of UNCRO that UNCRO personnel be permitted to leave the
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And did you explain for what purpose UNCRO wanted to leave the
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And what was that purpose?
16 A. To ensure that the laws of war were being respected, to ensure
17 that no humanitarian violations were being perpetrated, to allow us
18 access and visibility as per the United Nations Security Council
19 resolutions which granted us such, and I also mentioned that we were
20 willing to accept the responsibility and risk in doing so.
21 Q. Okay. If you recall, what response did you receive to the demand
22 to leave the compound?
23 A. Endless repetitions of no.
24 Q. How long did -- for how long did the tank remain there and how
25 long was UNCRO personnel prevented from leaving the camp?
1 A. We were prevented from leaving the camp up until the 9th of
2 August, where I believe I was one of the first outside of the camp.
3 There had been other minor exceptions, and I was escorted by a Captain of
4 Marine Lukovic from Sector South headquarters out of the area of
5 operations to take up my new duties of Chief of Staff UNCRO.
6 The tank remained in place for several hours. I cannot recall
7 when it left. I was not there when it was withdrawn. By then we had
8 received orders from UNCRO telling us that we were to stay in the camp
9 until a variety of higher-level discussions were conducted between UNPF,
10 UNCRO, and the various authorities.
11 Q. Although unable to leave the compound, were you able to hear
12 anything that was happening outside the compound during the period of
13 time you were prevented from leaving?
14 A. Yes. There were occasional flurries of shots, occasional grenade
15 detonation; a modest, very few number of buildings were in flames; and
16 much mechanised noise of tanks grinding by our headquarters to the north
17 on that road; and Croatian forces streaming into the town from that road
18 just outside Sector South headquarters.
19 Q. Now, you have indicated on a couple of occasions that you assumed
20 your duties as Chief of Staff UNCRO in Zagreb on the 9th. Shortly after
21 arriving in Zagreb, did you file a report about what had happened on
22 August 4th?
23 A. I did.
24 MR. TIEGER: And Your Honour, can the registrar call up 65 ter
25 number 4067, please.
1 Q. General Leslie, looking at 4067, is this the report you filed on
2 August 12th, 1995?
3 A. It is.
4 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, may that be marked and tendered?
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe.
6 MR. KEHOE: My understanding, Judge, is that the witness
7 statements were not being put in. It was just viva voce.
8 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, this is a contemporaneous report --
9 roughly contemporaneous report immediately after the events filed by this
10 witness to UNCRO headquarters.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Of course, it comes very close to a 92 ter, to say
12 the least, even if it's contemporaneous.
13 Perhaps, Mr. Kehoe, I will first give you an opportunity what,
14 apart from the formal aspect of that it would be a viva voce testimony,
15 apart from that, whether you would have any objections on the basis of
16 the content as well, of course which is --
17 MR. KEHOE: Your Honour, if I may. The content speaks for
18 itself. Certainly, I do have cross-examination on the content of the
19 document. But I was just moving under the assumption that we were just
20 doing -- we were moving under the assumption that it was not going to be
21 a 92 ter witness and that this was just going to be a viva voce witness.
22 That's why I'm somewhat surprised that --
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I do understand. What is the format side of it
24 and the substance of the -- I mean, the Chamber has seen this report. It
25 was delivered to the staff. I'm always a bit in doubt as to how to
1 approach these matters.
2 MR. TIEGER: It was also included on the exhibit list, Your
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, anything else on --
5 MR. KEHOE: No, Judge. It's -- obviously, I will cross on this
6 matter. The issue I have is frankly one of admissibility at this point
7 given that I thought we were moving as viva voce and not 92 ter.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Would you like to put this statement or report
9 to the witness in cross-examination?
10 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour, I would.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Would it not be very practical, then, to have if in
12 evidence? I mean, Mr. Tieger might even leave it to you to tender it
13 if -- I'm just wondering what, of course for Mr. Tieger, what does it add
14 exactly, apart from, let's say, arithmetics which are not always easy for
15 me to understand.
16 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, if I may.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
18 MR. TIEGER: I think, the significance, at least in part, is the
19 timing of the submission of this document. Going more broadly to the
20 point, the Court made -- I think this information -- it doesn't really
21 serve any practical purpose not to have this document admitted. So I
22 wasn't trying to circumvent any procedure, just trying to get to the
23 issues involved.
24 JUDGE ORIE: So what the Chamber could learn from this is what
25 the witness testified today that -- that approximately the same what he
1 had in mind already at that time when considering the situation.
2 MR. KEHOE: Your Honour, may I add one matter.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
4 MR. KEHOE: I was reminded by my colleague, Mr. Cayley, that I do
5 believe that the Prosecutor served us that on us as a statement of the
6 witness, to the extent that plays into the 92 ter matter.
7 JUDGE ORIE: I always understood 92 ter to primarily deal with
8 statements that were given for the purposes of proceedings before this
9 Tribunal, and not every single statement that was given or taken
10 contemporaneously. But these are different types of statements. If you
11 go to a witness and ask him specific questions, of course then the
12 question -- this is 12th of August, which is rather putting on paper,
13 from what I understand, what the witness had observed at the time, rather
14 than to being interviewed by some agency; although, I must admit that on
15 the basis of what I've read from it, violations of the law were certainly
16 in the back of the mind of the witness. That goes without saying.
17 Let me just --
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber admits the document into evidence on the
20 assumption that other counsel has not jumped up and have no objections in
21 addition to what Mr. Kehoe already told us. Yes.
22 Mr. Registrar that would be?
23 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P84, Your Honours.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar. P84 is admitted into
1 Mr. Tieger, please proceed.
2 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
3 Q. General Leslie, you've already had an opportunity to discuss the
4 protest letter by General Forand in which attacks on civilians are
5 alleged; and, as just noted, you, yourself prepared a report upon arrival
6 at UNCRO headquarters in Zagreb in which you describe the events and
7 asserted that Croatian authorities either indiscriminately or
8 deliberately fired on civilian residential areas.
9 I'd like you then, please, to explain to the Court what it was
10 that you observed that reflected either the deliberate targeting of
11 civilians or indiscriminate shelling of civilians?
12 MR. KEHOE: Your Honour, this is the problem. He's now using
13 this particular report to bootstrap his individual testimony. Now, if
14 the witness is going to testify as to what the witness heard or observed
15 with regard to this, that's fine. But, I mean, now bootstrapping this
16 with this document, this is clearly what he's, you know, an elaboration
17 of --
18 JUDGE ORIE: It may be just the way in which the question is put.
19 I -- I understand that where, of course, the Chamber has seen these
20 documents, where quite a lot of conclusions are drawn; and as it was set
21 out in the decision the Chamber gave earlier this morning, not in the
22 presence of this witness, but certainly relevant for the present
24 Mr. Leslie, you come to all kinds of conclusion, conclusions on
25 matters where it's reserved for the Chamber to draw conclusions. At the
1 same time, of course you have looked and observed matters, as becomes
2 clear from this first report, within the back of your mind and as you
3 said was also the task, your task to see whether any violations of the
4 laws, and I take it and the customs of war, were committed or any other
5 international crimes.
6 Now, conclusions, as I said before, are there for the Chamber to
7 draw. At the same time, of course it -- the legal framework, with which
8 you apparently are familiar, may have been of guidance to you when you
9 made your observations at the time. For example, just to give an
10 example, that a doctor might look primarily at the injuries of a person;
11 whereas, a lawyer might perhaps first look at whether someone is in
12 civilian or in military clothes. That's just the difference of approach.
13 Now, what I assume Mr. Tieger is asking you is whether you could
14 share with us your observations in light of what apparently was on your
15 mind as a question; that is, are any crimes committed? So, therefore, we
16 are not seeking your conclusions primarily; but if you, for example, say:
17 I saw a ratio of 99.9 civilians to be hit and 0.1 soldiers, that might be
18 relevant observation for drawing conclusions.
19 Now, I think Mr. Tieger is at this moment trying to find out what
20 you observed factually, and perhaps he will lead you in some more detail,
21 rather than to tell us what your conclusions were.
22 Mr. Tieger.
23 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour.
24 Q. The Court is correct. I'd like to focus on what you observed in
25 light of your experience with artillery and your understanding of weapons
1 systems that led you to the conclusions you made.
2 So, first of all, with respect to the initial barrage that took
3 place on August 4th, what was it about that initial barrage, if anything,
4 that led to the conclusions you drew in the August 12th report?
5 A. The initial barrage on the 4th of August from approximately 5.00
6 to approximately 7.00 in the morning did not have any concentration of
7 fire and no discernible pattern that corresponded to any obvious point of
8 aim of military value. The fire was, to put it in layman's terms, all
9 over the place.
10 Q. Okay. And although that may seem obvious, what's the
11 significance of that with respect to the -- either the conclusion that
12 the shelling of civilian areas was deliberate or was indiscriminate?
13 A. If the fire was all over the place and was not concentrated or
14 appeared to be directed towards any specific point, then, as a gunner,
15 there's a variety of conclusions one could reach. One is that it's
16 either indiscriminate in which the centre of mass of Knin is a free fire
17 zone in and amongst the civilian structures and residences, or it is a
18 deliberate attempt to distribute the fire such that the same effect
20 Q. Now, you also indicated, during the course of your discussion,
21 about events --
22 JUDGE ORIE: May I just put one question to the witness,
23 Mr. Tieger.
24 MR. TIEGER: Yes.
25 JUDGE ORIE: I take it that your answers are based at this moment
1 on the assumption that military targets were not all over the place, to
2 use the same terminology, because then you could say: I'm targeting
3 deliberately all the military targets that were all over the place.
4 That's it. I'm just thinking in terms of logic, and I'm trying to follow
5 your logic at this moment.
6 THE WITNESS: Sir, I think your logic is impeccable. I agree.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Okay. Although, I wasn't seeking that kind of
8 compliments; nevertheless, thank you.
9 Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
10 MR. TIEGER:
11 Q. General Leslie, you also indicated that during the course of the
12 shelling that took place on August 4th and August 5th, you observed
13 corrected fire or target group procedures; is that right?
14 A. That is correct.
15 Q. Would that indicate that there was -- would that reflect, based
16 on your observations and your experience, that was an effort to hit
17 particular targets?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. First of all, where did you see those target group procedures or
20 corrected fire? Where was it directed?
21 A. In the main, from the vantage points which I enjoyed which were
22 either the balcony or perhaps more specifically the region of the
23 helipad, the vast majority of the target grid procedure centre of mass
24 impact were in and amongst residential structures. There were some
25 exceptions to this, and I do not know if you wish me to go into the
1 detail at this point.
2 Q. Sure. What were the exceptions to this, do you wish to let us
4 A. The exceptions to this were - and this is not an exhaustive list
5 because I would like to refer to my notes to provide such - the air
6 defence battery which was located 400 to 600 metres to the south and east
7 of Sector South headquarters, which was -- which was well and truly
8 covered by fire by Croatian artillery systems; the south-east portion of
9 the train yards; and what was known as the factory complex, the roof of
10 which you could see from the helipad.
11 Those were the only three that immediately spring to mind that I
12 could see from where I was in Sector South helipad.
13 Q. Let me ask you, returning back to a question posed earlier - a
14 couple of questions posed earlier, in fact - with respect to the initial
15 barrage on both days in roughly of first couple of hours of the morning.
16 Could the fire that you observed have been directed toward
17 particular military targets to the extent that such targets might exist;
18 that is, assuming that the entire town was not a military target, was the
19 nature of the shelling that took place during the initial barrages such
20 that it could have been directed toward particular targets or not?
21 A. To be clear, sir, from the period of roughly 5.00 to 6.00, I did
22 not observe the artillery fire, so I can give you no visual confirmation
23 as to that sequence of events. When I saw it at 6.00 and subsequent to
24 that, the answer to your question is no. It was distributed across the
25 entire town and there was no concentration of fire, which even though you
1 couldn't see the exact point of impact of these shells, you could
2 certainly throughout the majority of town see the plumes, the dust
3 clouds, and the smoke from the impacts which would break the roof line.
4 Q. Now, let me ask you a question about military targets, if I may.
5 First of all, what is a legitimate military target, in general?
6 A. A legitimate military target is one which is deemed by an
7 attacking commander to have a significant military value, one in which
8 its neutralisation or destruction will provide a significant advantage to
9 the attacking force, and one which has military utility which is current.
10 There are other criteria, but I would have to refer to notes to get more
12 Q. Once a legitimate military target, to use that parlance, is
13 identified, does that mean that it can then be shelled?
14 A. No, sir, most absolutely not. Identifying a legitimate military
15 target is merely the first step in a process. The second step is
16 determining its current military relevance, it's utility, the possibility
17 of collateral damage to innocent lives or civilian structure, the
18 military utility of prosecuting that target commensurate with the rules
19 of law, what type of weapon system you have to engage that target to
20 avoid the potential of collateral damage, and then finally, of course,
21 the gut check to see whether or not you think it's the right thing to do
22 considering all the factors.
23 Q. Let me direct your attention to the residential areas to which
24 you saw corrected fire being directed. What if, for example, a
25 significant military figure lived in one of the apartment buildings
1 located within that residential area, would that mean that the corrected
2 fire you saw being directed into the residential neighbourhood,
3 therefore, be permissible and would that render your conclusions drawn in
4 the August 12th statement -- report wrong?
5 A. Sir, I will offer you my opinion based on a variety of years of
6 experience in these matters --
7 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe.
8 MR. KEHOE: He's offering his opinion; he's not an expert.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Well, as I said before and as is found in the
10 Chamber's decision, that sometimes it's not easy to distinguish,
11 especially when you have professionals testifying.
12 Mr. Tieger, what I notice at this moment is the following: That
13 you started asking the witness about what he considers to be a military
14 target, a legitimate military target. I had already some doubts at this
15 moment, but at the same time, I thought it might be good to know whether
16 this witness understands this, to be whether that's correct or not. And
17 then what was done is that we actually moved from what a legitimate
18 military target is into the process of decision-making on whether or not
19 to attack a certain target.
20 For example, the type of weaponry used is not -- is, of course, a
21 consideration which may be of importance; at the same time, it does not
22 change the target as a legitimate military target automatically.
23 Let's try to focus at this moment, first of all, on facts,
24 because your question was of a high hypothetical nature, at least you
25 have chosen to make it a hypothetical question. I could imagine that a
1 similar question in a less hypothetical way would be put to the witness,
2 but let's try not to lose ourselves in hypothesis.
3 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Mr. President.
4 Q. General Leslie, what kind of weapons systems did you see being
5 directed toward the residential neighborhoods where you saw corrected
7 A. I never saw the point of origin of the shell fire. The
8 explosions were commensurate with fire from a variety of medium and
9 heavier calibre indirect fire artillery systems which are, by definition,
10 at least with the technology available to the Croatian army at that time,
11 area weapons systems, not pinpoint strike systems.
12 Q. Can those weapons systems distinguish between particular military
13 targets, between a particular building which might have a military value
14 sufficient to render it a legitimate military target and the civilian
15 structures that surround it or are adjacent to it?
16 A. Simplistically, no. The actual zone in which an artillery shell
17 will land --
18 MR. KEHOE: Excuse me, Judge. This is clearly expert testimony.
19 We are getting into an area --
20 JUDGE ORIE: I tend to agree. Mr. Tieger, what we are talking
21 about at this moment, you, in your question, "Can those weapons systems
22 distinguish between particular military targets, between a building which
23 might have a military value sufficient to render it a legitimate military
24 target ..."
25 Now, that's again kind of a theoretical question because it all
1 depends, isn't it, on the size of the premises? I can imagine single
2 buildings. I am aware of the existence of Ministries of Defence in this
3 world, which may be clearly separated from all the surroundings and may
4 have a huge surface. So, therefore, I think that these type of questions
5 do not assist the Chamber very much.
6 Of course, you could ask, and that's a very simple question:
7 What is the range of area for a certain type of weaponry? How precise is
8 it? Then whether that's expertise or whether that's something an
9 experienced professional could tell this Court on the basis of his
10 experience is still to be seen.
11 Mr. Kehoe.
12 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour. I would ask for -- and that's why
13 if there is going to be some discussion about this, the witness, in order
14 to render any kind of view on that, has got to know the weapons system
15 because every weapons system has a different margin of error. And if he
16 doesn't know the weapons system and doesn't know the range --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Yes. Let's ask him what he knows about the
18 range, what he knows about it. I mean, I think I've been quite clear
19 that I agree with you that we could not just put questions, and let me
20 just find exactly where we started again.
21 Yes. The question was about "those weapons systems." So,
22 therefore, we limit ourselves to the weapons systems the witness
23 testified about, and then we could ask him whether he knows any further
24 details; and whether within this type of weapons systems, whether the
25 variation and precision is such, that this is, I think, knowledge an
1 experienced professional could have. And if the witness doesn't have
2 that knowledge, he'll tell us.
3 Now, to what extent that is just at or beyond the border of
4 factual testimony or expertise, we can consider that. But for the time
5 being, Mr. Tieger, you are invited to focus on these kind of questions
6 which avoid some of the legitimate concerns of Mr. Kehoe.
7 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour, I appreciate that and will do so.
8 However, if I'm not arguing with the Court's ruling, I just wasn't given
9 an opportunity, I think, to clarify one aspect of that, and that's the
10 following: I think witnesses, recipient witnesses with the right
11 backgrounds, should be in a position to assist the Court by advising the
12 Court what they observed and what conclusions they were able to draw from
14 I had pointed to -- it may have appeared to have been a
15 broadly-framed question. I had attempted to focus it on his observations
16 of the particular neighborhoods on the 4th and 5th where he observed
17 corrected fire. So that was a particular context related to -- rather
18 than a broad one that might have been embraced --
19 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
20 MR. TIEGER: -- a series of speculative responsibilities.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Still, then, that's part of the story, Mr. Tieger;
22 that is to say, corrected or adjusted fire. At the same time, it might
23 make a difference from what weaponry system these shells were fired.
24 Perhaps you should just explore whether it's known; and if it's not
25 known, whether this still allows for any conclusions.
1 Please proceed.
2 MR. TIEGER:
3 Q. General Leslie, you've obviously heard a good deal of the
4 discussion and part of the interest is in knowing, to the extent you were
5 aware, what weapons systems were used on Knin on the 4th and 5th of
6 August and their precision or lack of precision.
7 A. The weapons systems that -- first of all, my knowledge of the
8 weapons systems used comes from many years of experience in listening to
9 shells detonate. The vast majority of shells which I heard detonate were
10 of medium calibre. So, as I mentioned earlier, I did not see the guns
11 that fired these shells. They were out of visual range and remained so.
12 On my times watching the Croatian army advance into and through
13 Knin, a variety of 122-millimetre Howitzers and some D33 guns were towed
14 right past our sector headquarters. So I can try and connect the dots in
15 my mind. Plus, the lists of weapons systems which were currently in the
16 Croatian inventory is readily well-known.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Not to us.
18 MR. KEHOE: Not to us, Judge, and obviously not to Mr. Munkelien
19 either, the witness that was here the other day either.
20 JUDGE ORIE: This is comment, Mr. Kehoe.
21 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour. I suggest that we strike that
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
24 Mr. Tieger, could you elicit from the witness what he apparently
25 knows and what we might not know.
1 MR. TIEGER: Yes, Your Honour.
2 Q. General Leslie, the Court would like to know what weapons systems
3 you understand were -- what weapons systems were available, but I think
4 more to the point, what weapons systems you understand were used on the
5 4th and 5th.
6 MR. KEHOE: Judge, excuse me. I mean, use of the verb
7 "understand." I mean, we're talking about was what he knows was used,
8 not a speculation as to using the verb "understand." It's what he knows
9 were used. I think that's the issue that we're talking about here.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Knowledge is often based on understanding.
11 MR. KEHOE: Yes.
12 JUDGE ORIE: So, therefore, it's how he listened to the question
13 and carefully listen to the answer which interests us, perhaps even more
14 than exactly the way in which it was phrased. Of course, if I understand
15 something to be A or B, then I have -- I can explain the reasons why I
16 understand this to be A or B; and in an explanation of those reasons,
17 usually you find the facts the Chamber is interested in.
18 Please proceed, Mr. Tieger.
19 MR. TIEGER:
20 Q. Let me start back toward the beginning. What weapons systems,
21 that you were you aware of, did you know that the Croatian military had
22 available? Was the UN told about that? Did you explore it in other
24 A. The weapons systems that we told were available to the Croatian
25 army, and which I physically saw in my many interactions along the zone
1 of separation on both the Croatian and Serbian side, were medium-weight
2 mortars of approximately 82 millimetres in diameter, 122-millimetre guns,
3 130-millimetre guns, 152-millimetre guns, and a variety of rocket
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Tieger, the witness was referring to both sides.
6 That might need some clarification.
7 MR. TIEGER:
8 Q. In -- General Leslie, your answer referred to "both." So if
9 there are any weapons systems that were exclusive to one side or the
10 other, you'll need to assist the Court, because, at the moment, the Court
11 is interested in knowing who you know about the weapons systems that the
12 Croatian side had.
13 A. All of those, sir, are based on my knowledge of or understanding
14 of what the Croatian side had.
15 Q. When you refer to a variety of rockets launchers, are those
16 multiple-barrel rocket launchers or MBRLs?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. So working backwards on the kinds of weapons that you were
19 discussing, what is the variation and precision and, indeed, what is the
20 general purpose of MBRLs?
21 A. Multiple-barrel rocket launchers are an area suppression weapon
22 system whose individual rocket accuracy is not high; and so the tactical
23 utility of them comes by massing your five and covering an area which,
24 for planning purposes for all rocket launchers in this broad range, is a
25 block of ground roughly 400 metres left and right from the line between
1 the rocket launcher and the target and 200 to 300 metres in depth.
2 Q. All right. And you referred earlier in your testimony to area
3 weapons. What about the other weapons systems that you listed in your
4 answer a moment ago?
5 A. The relatively unsophisticated nature of the indirect fire
6 systems that I referred to more often than not indicated that they would
7 have an accuracy which is dependent on range, dependent on the charge
8 used; but in terms of a generality, if you got it within 400 metres of
9 your opening point of aim, you would then visually correct that fire on
10 to your target. So landing within a 400 metre radius of your target with
11 your first shot would be considered within acceptable norms.
12 Q. With respect to the legitimate military targets which you
13 identified in Knin on August 4th, did you see fire that was -- that
14 indicated an effort to take out those military targets exclusively?
15 A. I saw some of those targets being engaged with target grid
16 procedure which, in some cases, indicated that it was an exclusive
17 attempt to hit only those targets.
18 Q. With that particular corrected fire procedure?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And what about in the context of the overall shelling that you
22 A. The best descriptor between the periods 5.00 and 7.00 in the
23 morning on the 4th and 5th of August was the fire was all over the place,
24 and there was no apparent target grid procedure that I could discern, and
25 that in the periods on both days from 7.00 until when the fire stopped,
1 the target grid procedure, some of which was fired at some of the targets
2 which I believed to be legitimate military targets, the vast majority
3 which was not.
4 MR. TIEGER: Thank you, Your Honour. I believe that concludes my
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. I would have a few questions to better
7 understand your testimony, but, first, Judge Gwaunza has some questions.
8 Questioned by the Court:
9 JUDGE GWAUNZA: Mr. Leslie, you said in answer to a question from
10 Mr. Tieger that on the night of the 4th, there were occasional explosions
11 heard. Was there any way of saying whether those explosions were
12 targeted at any specific places or rather whether there were any specific
14 A. No, ma'am, there was not. We were not equipped with night
15 observations devices, and the detonations were outside of my visual view.
16 JUDGE GWAUNZA: Thank you. Then you mentioned collecting
17 critically injured people from the hospital and taking them to the UN
18 camp. Is that the same camp that was the then barricaded by the tank
19 that you referred to?
20 A. Yes, ma'am.
21 JUDGE GWAUNZA: So would you say the injured that were there
22 inside the camp were affected in any way by that activity?
23 A. No, ma'am, I would not. I would say that they had access to
24 reasonable care from the Czech medical company, which provided excellent
25 support to those critical injured personnel. In all fairness, the level
1 of facilities available to the Czechs was what we categorise as a role 2,
2 which means they can do immediate life-saving surgery but not anything
3 more complicated than that. I'm not sufficiently versed in medical --
4 the arts of medicine to give you a more coherent answer than that.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Could I ask you the following: You have answered
6 many questions about shelling of Knin city, shell impact, and it was
7 never specifically asked whether you were aware or whether you observed
8 anything that allowed you to conclude by what party the shells were
10 A. Sir, I never saw the point of origin of any of the indirect fire
11 systems that engaged Knin between the 4th and 5th of August. So I have
12 been operating on the assumption, as have many others, that the fire
13 originated from the attacking Croatian army. But that is an assumption
14 because we did not -- we saw them land, but I never, in my time there,
15 saw the Croatian artillery actually fire at Knin.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Now, did you observe anything that would run
17 counter to the assumption you just explained to us?
18 A. No, sir.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Then my next question would be: You described that
20 you saw dead people when you were on the road to the hospital. Did you
21 observe anything which would give a clue to whether their status was
22 civilian or military?
23 A. Yes, sir, I did.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Could you please explain what you observed.
25 A. There were - it was long ago - but I believe that there were a
1 few dead children -- well, there were certainly some, very young. There
2 were women dressed in skirts. There were fighting-aged males as well,
3 dressed with the sort of unique collection of clothing that the Serbian
4 militia wore at that time. There were a few elderly. Most of the dead,
5 though, were essentially shapeless bundles of rags with the occasional
6 limb protruding or other unpleasantness.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Do I understand were your answer that you're
8 not able to give any more precise proportions of the categories you just
10 A. No, sir, I cannot.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Then you told us about soldiers on the wooden cargo
12 pallets behind the tractors. You said that you saw, together with women
13 and elderly people, you saw also soldiers. Could you be more precise as
14 what soldiers of what armed forces, if you are able to make any
15 distinction in that respect? Could you tell us a bit more about these
17 A. Yes, sir, I can. Starting in the afternoon of the 4th, the
18 soldiers were Serbian soldiers and it started slowly, this column of
19 vehicles. But within a couple of hours, it was very constant and steady
20 where you'd have trucks carrying two or three soldiers, five or six women
21 and children; followed by a putt-putt, which is this tractor pulling this
22 wooden cargo flat rack, that might have all soldiers; followed by a
23 normal tractor pulling a hay wagon that would have all women and
24 children. So it was truly a chaotic melange of people driving by Sector
25 South headquarters.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you for those answers. Before an opportunity
2 will be given to Defence counsel to cross-examine you, we'll first have a
3 break as requested. We'll resume at 20 minutes to 1.00.
4 --- Recess taken at 12.20 p.m.
5 --- On resuming at 12.45 p.m.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe, may I take it that you arranged that you
7 would be the one to start.
8 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
10 Mr. Leslie, you will now be cross-examined by Mr. Kehoe who is
11 counsel for Mr. Gotovina.
12 Please proceed.
13 Cross-examination by Mr. Kehoe:
14 Q. Good afternoon, General. General, you mentioned during your
15 direct examination that you had taken a trip out, I believe you said,
16 approximately 6.00 a.m. on the 4th; is that right?
17 A. That's correct.
18 MR. KEHOE: Can I ask if the clerk can bring up 65 ter 4769.
19 Q. General, while we're waiting for this, if the pacing seems a bit
20 slow, I am attempting to allow the translators to catch up with us.
21 MR. KEHOE: If we could just blow up the bottom half of that or
23 Q. General, as you see on the map here, it is an overhead of Knin,
24 and as I'm sure you can observe on the right-hand side of that photograph
25 is the UN facility.
1 With the assistance of the usher, could you please draw on that
2 map and tell us the route you took when you left for the first time on
3 the 6th -- excuse me, on the 4th of August, 1995, at 6.00 a.m.?
4 A. Well, sir, I can't be precise as to the exact time. I said
5 approximately 6.00.
6 Q. Now, sir, you marked in blue the route coming back down and
7 coming down the main street and then returning; is that right?
8 A. That's correct.
9 Q. And how long a period of time was this?
10 A. Twelve, ten, fifteen-ish minutes, no more.
11 Q. Were you accompanied with others?
12 A. I was. It was a Jordanian vehicle with a Jordanian driver and a
13 Jordanian crew commander.
14 Q. And do you know who those Jordanians were, their names?
15 A. No, I'm sorry, I don't.
16 Q. You noted for us that you went to pick up or attempted to pick up
17 some UN CIVPOL people?
18 A. I was involved in that. It wasn't me who was trying to pick them
19 up. I was there. It was the Jordanian vehicle that was actually going
20 to go off and do that organized by the CIVPOL, I believe, confused mix of
21 vehicles at the front gate; and they wanted someone who knew where this
22 approximate location was, and I was available to do so.
23 Q. And this location is how far away from the base?
24 A. Probably as the route flies, 1.000-odd metres.
25 Q. And your testimony is that the people that were in this Jordanian
1 APC didn't know where this location was?
2 A. That is correct, at least they gave every indication they didn't
3 know where it was.
4 Q. And who were you supposed to pick up at this location?
5 A. There was some UN CIVPOL at a specific address. We did not pick
6 up the UN CIVPOL, but there were three civilian employees that we - I
7 didn't see because I was in the back of the vehicle - the Jordanian
8 person, who was crew commanding it, stopped, lowered the ramp, picked
9 them up, and we came back.
10 THE INTERPRETER: Could you please slow down for the benefit of
11 the interpreters. Thank you.
12 MR. KEHOE: I'm sorry. I apologise, Judge.
13 Q. Who were the CIVPOL --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe, please proceed.
15 MR. KEHOE:
16 Q. General, who were the CIVPOL people who you were supposed to be
17 picking up?
18 A. It was an address. There was a couple of folk there. I cannot
19 recall the names.
20 Q. Do you recall, sir, the people that you actually did pick up?
21 A. Three civilian employees, and I'm sorry it's been so long, I do
22 not recall their names.
23 MR. KEHOE: Your Honour, if we could have this marked as an
24 exhibit and moved into evidence at this time. This map itself, Your
25 Honour, is independently is P62; however, this, I believe, would be a D
1 exhibit given it has the witness's markings.
2 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Tieger, I take it no objections.
3 MR. TIEGER: Correct, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar that would be?
5 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D112, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. D112 is admitted into evidence.
7 Please proceed.
8 MR. KEHOE:
9 Q. General, what was the address, do you recall?
10 A. No, sir, I don't, nor can I recall the address for which I lived
11 for five months.
12 Q. Now, sir, let us turn to yet another version of this particular
13 65 ter document.
14 MR. KEHOE: Again, if we could bring up a fresh version of 65 ter
16 Q. Now, looking at 4769 anew, sir, you said you took another trip
17 later on that day?
18 A. That is correct.
19 Q. And where is that location, sir? Could you take us again with
20 the marker and mark the route that you took.
21 A. [Marks]
22 Q. Now, again, you've marked, in blue, going to the same road yet a
23 little bit further, and it appears to be a turn around in and around --
24 just north of where it says "parliament"; is that right?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Now, where did you go, sir?
2 A. Went to meet with a Serbian liaison officer who called my office
3 and wanted to talk about some details on Serbian -- sorry, displaced
4 persons who were in our compound.
5 Q. And what was that individual's name?
6 A. If you'll permit me to look at my notes, I will be able to give
7 you his name.
8 Q. Feel free, sir.
9 And what are you looking at, General?
10 A. I'm looking at a statement that I provided to investigators from
11 this Court in 1997 but were actually signed by me in 1999.
12 The officer named, I believe, was Captain Karlopac [phoen].
13 That's what I wrote.
14 Q. Captain Karlopac. Now, that particular statement that you have
15 in 1997 -- now, by the way, on this particular trip that you went to, I
16 believe you said it was sometime in the late afternoon; is that right?
17 A. It was evening and night; it was dark.
18 Q. Can you give me an approximate time frame?
19 A. No, I'm sorry, I can't.
20 Q. Who did you go with?
21 A. I went in a Jordanian armoured personnel carrier accompanied by a
22 Jordanian captain with the name of Mohammed who was my military
24 Q. And do you recall what his last name is?
25 A. His last name is Mohammed.
1 Q. His last name is Mohammed?
2 A. Right.
3 Q. Okay. And other than that trip, were those the only trips you
4 took on the 4th?
5 A. You mean trips in a vehicle?
6 Q. Trips in a vehicle into Knin?
7 A. That is correct.
8 Q. Now, how about trips outside a vehicle?
9 A. There was a couple of brief forays to the front gate and beyond
10 as part of the endless tour, the cycle of activity that I would engage in
11 throughout the day on the 4th, checking on the front gate, seeing how the
12 retrieval plan was going for the UN staffers and a variety of military
13 officers, but I didn't progress any distance at all from the gate.
14 Q. And just going back before we go into the gate situation. With
15 regard that the two of you went in with vehicles, and I think you
16 described them as mounted?
17 A. That is correct.
18 Q. With regard to the two vehicles that were mounted, in both of
19 those were you back in the APC?
20 A. In both of the cases, I was back in the APC, that is correct.
21 Q. And during that period of time, you did not observe any shelling
22 while you were in the back of that APC, did you?
23 A. The hatch, the top hatch was open. I could certainly hear the
24 shell fire. I did not see any detonations in close proximity to the
25 vehicles, that is correct.
1 Q. So when you -- I apologise. Just waiting while everyone catches
2 up, General.
3 So when you told the Office of the Prosecutor in 1997, and then
4 subsequently signed the document in 1999, that you had personally
5 witnessed shell fire on three occasions during your trips through Knin
6 during the shell fire, that wasn't true; right?
7 A. Personally witnessed?
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe.
9 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
11 THE WITNESS: Sir, what does "personally witnessed" mean? If I
12 heard shell fire in close proximity, the detonation of a shell in close
13 proximity of to a vehicle or in relative proximity to a vehicle, I would
14 say that's me witnessing it.
15 MR. KEHOE:
16 Q. General, when you told the Office of the Prosecutor, and you can
17 review your statement --
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe.
19 MR. KEHOE: I apologise. I apologise, Judge.
20 JUDGE ORIE: A pause, every time, between answer and question;
21 and for you, Mr. Leslie, the same, please --
22 THE WITNESS: My apologies.
23 JUDGE ORIE: -- wait for a second.
24 MR. KEHOE: My apologies, Your Honour, and my apologies to the
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And, unfortunately, I'm unable to follow the
2 B/C/S translation. I'm usually listening to the French. If there is any
3 problem there, I might switch to B/C/S as well.
4 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
6 MR. KEHOE:
7 Q. So General, when you told the Office of the Prosecutor in a
8 statement -- by the way, the statement that you gave in 1997, you
9 dictated that statement, didn't you?
10 A. In part. There was also a series of note takers there. You will
11 forgive me, but I can't remember the name of the investigator. The
12 statement then was then taken away and returned to me two years later at
13 which point I signed it.
14 Q. Well, you read it before you signed it, didn't you?
15 A. Yes, sir, and I probably did not read it carefully enough.
16 Q. Well, certainly, sir, your interview in 1997 was closer to the
17 events in 1995 than when you ultimately signed it in 1999, wasn't it?
18 A. That is correct.
19 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe, what else could -- isn't this one of
20 these fully superfluous questions. 2000 is later than 1998, yes.
21 MR. KEHOE: I appreciate that, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
23 MR. KEHOE: Often, Your Honour, in the spirit of confessions, as
24 my learned colleague, Mr. Cayley said, we are examples of the systems
25 from which we grew up, and that's unfortunately one of the frailties and
1 I will attempt to change that as we move forward.
2 JUDGE ORIE: We have all have to adapt to a new situation.
3 Please proceed.
4 MR. KEHOE:
5 Q. General, you did say in 1997 that you personally witnessed these
6 on three occasions during trips through Knin during the shell fire;
7 didn't you say that?
8 A. Sir, I did. However, as I pointed out in my previous testimony,
9 only rarely did I see a point of detonation. The vast majority of shells
10 which I witnessed were either through oral or the smoke and glass of dust
12 Q. Now, did you also explain to the Office of the Prosecutor when
13 you gave that statement that, in fact, you never took three trips through
14 Knin during the shell fire.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Stop.
16 You may answer the question.
17 THE WITNESS: Sir, I'd have to refer to that, but may I say that
18 the testimony I gave in 1995 was taken away and sent back to me. There
19 are some variances and inaccuracies in that testimony, which I'm more
20 than willing to admit to, and certain nuancing and wording that I did not
21 pay enough attention to when I actually signed it two years later.
22 I believe I was thinking at the time that one of those trips,
23 especially the one on the evening of the 4th, that there was almost no
24 shell fire and certainly not along the route.
25 MR. KEHOE:
1 Q. Well, you told us today you had two mounted trips out; and in the
2 statement that you gave in 1997, you said that you went out on three
3 occasions. Now I ask you to take a look at P84.
4 MR. KEHOE: If we can put that up on the screen.
5 Your Honour, before I do that, if I could tender the map that we
6 have that's on the screen, my colleague Mr. Misetic informs me that I
7 have not done so.
8 MR. TIEGER: Sorry, Your Honour. May I have a page reference for
9 the reference in the 1997 statement, please?
10 MR. KEHOE: Certainly. It's 00884726.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Let's try first to deal with the -- you first
12 tendered the aerial photograph and the markings, that's the second marked
13 aerial photograph into evidence.
14 Mr. Tieger, if you could express yourself on any objections.
15 MR. TIEGER: No, Your Honour, no objection.
16 JUDGE ORIE: No. Then Mr. Registrar, this would be number?
17 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D113, Your Honours.
18 JUDGE ORIE: D113 is admitted into evidence.
19 Please proceed.
20 MR. KEHOE: Just for the sake of clarity, Mr. Tieger, it is the
21 first full paragraph on that page approximately seven lines down, just
22 for reference sake.
23 THE WITNESS: Sir, I have the reference.
24 MR. KEHOE: I know you do, sir.
25 THE WITNESS: I beg your pardon. I beg your pardon.
1 MR. KEHOE: I was just helping my colleague, as well.
2 Q. Now, this is the document that came into evidence previously and
3 just a -- one point of interest on page 1. You noted -- now this was
4 written several days after you took over as the Chief of Staff UNCRO in
5 Zagreb, wasn't it?
6 A. That is correct.
7 Q. And, of course, let me move down the page on 1.
8 MR. KEHOE: If we could blow up paragraph 1, if I may.
9 Q. Now, it notes four lines down that, "I arrived in Knin on 1 March
10 1995, and departed on 7 August 1995"?
11 Do you see that, sir?
12 A. I do.
13 Q. Now, you mentioned this extended conversation that you had with,
14 I believe, it was Captain of Marine Lukovic on the 9th of August; do you
15 recall that?
16 A. I recall the conversation because the good navy captain was the
17 officer who drove me from Sector South headquarters to the coast; and if
18 I made a mistake on the date, I apologise.
19 Q. So, in fact, you left Knin on the 7th of August; correct?
20 A. I would have to refer to further notes, sir, and documentation.
21 I believe so, on the 7th of August.
22 MR. KEHOE: Now, on the second page of this document, if we can
23 turn to paragraph 3.
24 JUDGE ORIE: That's the paragraph 3 on page 2 because the
25 numbering on this document is a bit confusing. There is a number 3 on
1 paragraph one as well, just for the record.
2 Yes, please proceed.
3 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour, that's it. Thank you.
4 Paragraph 3, if we could just blow that up, and it's the
5 paragraph 3 as Judge Orie pointed out.
6 Q. Now, that paragraph, General, details your trip to the hospital
7 on the 5th of August, doesn't it?
8 A. It does.
9 Q. Now, let's move up to paragraph 2, and it begins on the bottom of
10 the first page and carries over to page 2.
11 MR. KEHOE: If we can just look at that one page, Mr. Monkhouse,
12 and then if we can go to the next page.
13 Q. Now, General, if we turn our attention to this paragraph, this
14 discusses the events of the 4th of August and chronicles the attempt by
15 individuals within UN Sector South to bring in UN employees, doesn't it?
16 A. It does.
17 Q. Not anywhere in that paragraph do you discuss the fact that you
18 went out on the 4th of August to assist in the retrieval of personnel?
19 A. You're correct.
20 Q. As a matter of fact, it mentions Mr. Dawes?
21 A. It does.
22 Q. And also the other person who is the Sector South security
23 officer, and that would be Mr. Dreyer, wasn't it?
24 A. Absolutely. Who both deserve great credit for what they did
25 because they were out all the time, as I mention in my report.
1 Q. But there's no mention of you, is there, General?
2 A. Well, sir, why would I do that?
3 Q. Is there any mention of you; yes or no?
4 A. No, I did not write about myself.
5 Q. Let us go back, General, to another copy of 65 ter 4769.
6 While we're waiting, General, with regard to this first trip that
7 you say you took down to Knin somewhere after 6.00 in the morning, do you
8 have any better time about that?
9 A. No, I don't.
10 Q. Do you have any witness that can corroborate that you took that
11 trip; and if so, who?
12 A. Well, I would assume the Jordanian armoured personnel crew.
13 There had to be some folk down at the front gate, even though it was
14 incredibly chaotic, who saw what was going on and some of the sequence of
15 events of activities. There were dozens of vehicles leaving the camp
16 every 15 to 20 minutes being dispatched to go pick up people.
17 Anyway, I await your question, sir.
18 Q. General, do you have the name of one person that can corroborate
19 that you took that trip?
20 A. No, sir, I don't, nor do I have the name of one person that
21 readily springs to mind who can corroborate my trip to the hospital.
22 Q. We'll get to that.
23 A. Okay.
24 MR. KEHOE: Let us go back to 65 ter 4769, and if we can blow up,
25 Mr. Monkhouse, the area down near the compound, it would be the lower
2 Q. Now, General, you mention that, likewise, sometime on the day of
3 the 4th, you also went out to this area near the compound and there was
4 some activity regarding bodies; is that right?
5 A. Was that on the 4th or on the 5th?
6 Q. Well, I certainly can retrieve the transcript, General; but if my
7 memory serves me correctly, you testified this morning that this was on
8 the 4th during one of your unmounted trips?
9 A. Right.
10 Q. If you give me one moment, I will find it.
11 A. Thank you.
12 JUDGE ORIE: The unmounted trips are found at page 80, line 4 --
13 no. That's the most recent one.
14 MR. KEHOE: This would be at 32, 11. And if I can just scroll up
15 a little bit but, just so that I can put this in context. Okay.
16 Q. If we can start at 32, 1, so we can put this in context, and the
17 question was about the going out on the 4th, and at line 1: "A couple of
18 times mounted; a couple of times dismounted. The mounted were sometime
19 shortly after 6.00 for a very short duration where, in the controlled
20 chaos, that was the front gate."
21 A. That is correct. The front gate --
22 Q. If I may, General, let me finish?
23 A. I beg your pardon.
24 Q. I'm just reading the transcript and then we can go to the
1 "There were some issues with UN CIVPOL who were not necessarily
2 on the same recall list as the Sector South United Nations civil staff,
3 and there was a demand for somebody who knew where a street was close to
4 the train yard. So I hopped aboard that vehicle. The duration of the
5 trip was about 15 minutes, nothing significant to report. Picked up
6 three people, none of them CIVPOL, and came back.
7 The second trip was at some point during the day. There was some
8 bodies outside to the right, and some people were interested in
9 investigating them and putting them in bags. So I just went outside to
10 put a stop to that."
11 It is that incident that I am referring to, and I'd like you to
12 address in the chart that is -- or the map that is on the screen.
13 MR. KEHOE: If we can just pause for a second.
14 Q. General, did this trip take place on the 4th or on the 5th?
15 A. Sir, I cannot recall.
16 Q. Drawing, using this particular map that's on the screen, again in
17 the same fashion that we employed previously, could you tell us the route
18 that you took and where these bodies were located?
19 A. It is not a long trip.
20 Q. I understand, General.
21 A. Okay. About there, to the best of my memory. I take no credit
22 for anything that happened. It was soldiers out there trying to put
23 bodies in bags which I thought exposed them to unnecessary risk, so I
24 brought them back.
25 Q. And at that particular time, who was with you?
1 A. I believe one of the Canadian captains was, but I'm not entirely
2 sure. I think it might have been Captain Berikoff. You will have to ask
3 him. Sir, it was 12 years ago, one of many, many incidents in a very
4 compressed time frame. So you will forgive me --
5 Q. Sir, I assume before you came here today that you read your five
6 statements that you gave to the Office of the Prosecutor, didn't you?
7 A. I did.
8 Q. And I'm sure that refreshed you on the facts and circumstances of
9 this, did it not?
10 A. It did.
11 Q. Approximately, what time of day was this?
12 A. It was sometime in the morning, but, I'm sorry, I can't recall
13 the exact time.
14 MR. KEHOE: If we can have this, Your Honour, with a D number
15 introduced into evidence.
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, may I take it that --
17 MR. TIEGER: No objection.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
19 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D114, Your Honours.
20 JUDGE ORIE: D114 is admitted into evidence.
21 MR. KEHOE: If we could have yet another version of 65 ter 4769
22 put on the screen.
23 Mr. Monkhouse, if we could just take a larger view of that. No,
24 I'm sorry. I meant the other way. Okay.
25 Q. Now, General, on the 5th, you noted that you went out to the
2 A. That's correct.
3 Q. And, approximately, what time was that?
4 A. It was at approximately 9.00.
5 Q. And, approximately, what time did this Serbian doctor come to the
7 A. I was not there when he first arrived. I became aware of the
8 issue sometime between 7.00 and 8.00.
9 Q. So it was fair to say he was there prior to that?
10 A. Correct.
11 Q. Again, if we could use this map, and if you could take your pen
12 and indicate to us the path that you followed.
13 A. [Marks] Well, both ways.
14 Q. You followed the same road back?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Now, who was with you on this trip?
17 A. We had the Serbian doctor, whose name I cannot recall; we had two
18 Canadian M-113 armoured personnel carriers; two Jordanian M-113 armoured
19 personnel carriers; and two Czech armoured personnel carriers.
20 Q. General, do you know the name of anyone who was with you?
21 A. Yes, actually now I do. Sergeant Marcotte, who was the Canadian
22 sergeant, accompanied me on the trip; and for that specific sequence of
23 events, he was awarded the meritorious service medal.
24 Q. And anyone else, sir?
25 A. The names of the Canadian soldiers with a bit of research I could
1 certainly provide to you. I do not recall the names of the Jordanian
2 crews who, of course, spoke no English, and of the Czech crews who spoke
3 no English either or very little, or, to be honest, I don't know if they
4 spoke English or not, but I had very little dealings with them.
5 Q. And when you were in this particular, I guess, convoy of
6 vehicles, I mean where were you?
7 A. I was in, originally, the lead vehicle, but then the Serbian
8 doctor, very brave, took the lead, so I was in the first vehicle.
9 Q. And where were you in this vehicle, sir?
10 A. I was standing in the cargo hatch which was open.
11 Q. We will come back to these when we go through the actual
12 sequence. Let me talk to you just a bit about the actual operation,
13 Operation Storm, that you spoke about this morning.
14 MR. KEHOE: If I might have one moment.
15 [Defence counsel confer]
16 MR. KEHOE: Your Honour, I do believe there is a technical
17 problem here as we move into this next area.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Not knowing the character of the problem, I also
19 have no clue as to whether you would perhaps already continue.
20 MR. KEHOE: It's really a prelude of what we're going into.
21 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
22 JUDGE ORIE: I do understand that there was a computer crash for
23 your team. Is there any other area you could perhaps already touch upon?
24 MR. KEHOE: If I may, Judge. I mean, one the one is building on
25 the other, so that's unfortunately the --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
2 MR. KEHOE: -- the difficulty.
3 [Defence counsel confer]
4 JUDGE ORIE: We have to wait for a while until a technician can
5 identify the problem.
6 MR. KEHOE: It appears to be restarting, Judge.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Do I understand that the system is restarting?
8 MR. KEHOE: Yes, sir.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Yes. Will we receive any indication of how
10 much time it will still take --
11 MR. TIEGER: Your Honour.
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Tieger.
13 MR. TIEGER: I don't understand the nature or the problem of the
14 document, but I just wonder if it's possible to use a hard copy in the
16 MR. KEHOE: I wish there were, I mean. Thanks, I mean --
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, we're there, I do understand.
18 MR. KEHOE: Now, before we just go to this, and I would like to
19 pull this up.
20 If I could move the item on the screen into evidence, Judge.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. That's the itinerary to and from the hospital.
22 No objections, Mr. Tieger?
23 MR. TIEGER: No objection, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar?
25 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honours, this becomes Exhibit D115.
1 JUDGE ORIE: D115 is admitted into evidence.
2 Please proceed.
3 MR. KEHOE:
4 Q. General, before we move to this particular item, could you spell
5 Marcotte for me?
6 A. M-A-R-C-O-T-T-E. If you wish, I can have, subject to access to
7 information regulations of my government, contact details available to
8 you by tomorrow morning.
9 Q. Thank you very much. I would appreciate that.
10 A. Absolutely.
11 Q. Now, General, I would like to play this individual item.
12 MR. KEHOE: This is ID 170388, and this is an audio clip from CBC
13 news online. There is in --
14 JUDGE ORIE: Transcripts are given to the booth.
15 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour.
16 [Audiotape played]
17 "They're not disgruntled former soldiers, but some of the most
18 senior officers in the Canadian army. Major-General Andrew Leslie leaves
19 for Afghanistan next week where he will command Canadian forces. He says
20 he's never believed that the Croatian army planned Operation Storm on its
22 Andrew Leslie: 'That had to have been done by people who were
23 really knew what they were doing. Therefore, I can't see where they
24 would have pulled off the expertise to get it done.'"
25 MR. KEHOE:
1 Q. Now, General, let us begin to talk about that.
2 MR. KEHOE: Just for the record, Judge, that was a CBC audio clip
3 from July the 21st, 2003.
4 Now, General, what --
5 JUDGE ORIE: Wait.
6 MR. KEHOE:
7 Q. What was it about Operation Storm that led you to say that they
8 really knew what they were doing?
9 A. Sir, that opinion was shaped over the subsequent years by, not
10 fact, but by a great or a significant amount of conversation amongst
11 military professionals that a certain nation's contracting service, which
12 specialised in military activities, had been instrumental in assisting
13 the Croatian military authorities in planning and executing Operation
14 Storm. I will be the first to admit I have no proof of such.
15 Q. And what country are you referring to?
16 A. Sir, that is beyond my remit to comment on.
17 Q. Well, what company were you talking about that assisted the
19 A. Sir, to my mind, without substantive proof, it would be slander
20 to mention this company now.
21 Q. Well let's change the question a bit and let's explore your
22 comments on CBC, and explain to us what expertise was used during
23 Operation Storm that you referred to in your statement?
24 A. Sir, it was an opinion based on a great deal of conversation
25 amongst military professionals. There is a certain body of view that
1 some military contractors were hired to assist the Croatian government
2 with the synchronisation and the coordination of fires, the timing and
3 the tactics.
4 Q. Let's explore that. So what you're saying is that Operation
5 Storm was conducted with a high degree of expertise; is that right?
6 A. I, as a military professional, would agree that certain elements
7 of Operation Storm were conducted with a high degree of expertise. If
8 the aim was to ensure that the local population was cleansed from the
10 Q. Was that what you --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe.
12 MR. KEHOE: Yes, Your Honour, I'm sorry.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
14 MR. KEHOE:
15 Q. Was that what you were referring to in that audio clip when you
16 noted that this was conducted with a high degree of expertise and that
17 they really knew what they were doing? Was that what you were talking
19 A. I'm sorry, sir, I can't recall what I was actually thinking when
20 I made those comments many years ago.
21 Q. Well, General, let us talk, if I may, let us talk about the
22 operation itself. You are familiar, are you not, with various aspects of
23 NATO strategy, I take it?
24 A. Some of them, yes.
25 MR. KEHOE: And if I can just put a document up on the screen,
1 and that would be -- before I do that, Judge, I've been reminded, once
2 again, that I should move into evidence the audio clip, 1D17-0388.
3 MR. TIEGER: No objection.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar?
5 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, this becomes Exhibit D116.
6 JUDGE ORIE: D116 is admitted into evidence.
7 MR. KEHOE: Now, if I could put up on the screen ID 170100.
8 Q. This is one of two pages, General. If we could just look at the
9 first page that just identifies where the next page comes from, so I give
10 you a point of reference.
11 MR. KEHOE: This is the NATO Glossary of Terms and Definitions.
12 If we can go to the next page, and if we could just go down on that page,
13 at the bottom. And if we could blow up that centre of gravity item.
14 Q. Now, the centre of gravity in the NATO definition of the centre
15 of gravity: "Characteristics, capabilities, or localities from which a
16 nation, an alliance, a military force, or other grouping derives its
17 freedom of action, physical strength, or will to fight."
18 Are you familiar with that, General?
19 A. I am.
20 Q. Now, is that a definition that has been incorporated into the
21 Canadian military philosophy?
22 A. Essentially. There may be minor variances, but they are of no
23 significant difference from the intent of this one.
24 Q. And the idea of the centre of gravity is that if you can
25 neutralise or destroy the enemy's centre of gravity, it will lead to the
1 destruction of his cohesion and his will to fight; isn't that right?
2 A. Essentially, yes.
3 Q. Now, let us turn to the Krajina and, specifically, Knin. Now,
4 Knin was the heart of the Krajina Serbs, wasn't it?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And you knew, sir, that if the Croatian army could capture Knin,
7 they would he essentially decapitate the Krajina Serb effort; right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Now, you noted for us, at some length, that you have been an
10 artillery officer for much of your career. Are you familiar with the
11 United States air/land battle doctrine?
12 A. Air/land 2000 and 2004, yes, I am.
13 Q. And if we could -- do you basically agree with the principles
14 that is set forth in that air/land battle doctrine?
15 A. That is a very detailed technically complicated document, so I
16 would further subdivide my approval down into specific blocks before I
17 gave such.
18 Q. Let me just -- if we can hone in a little bit and if we can
19 probably cut down, I know that there may be a lot of issues.
20 MR. KEHOE: If I could bring up on the page -- excuse me, if I
21 could bring up on the screen ID 170080
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe, what are we going to do with the previous
23 document? You read all of it, the centre of gravity and --
24 MR. KEHOE: If I could move those two documents into evidence.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You read all of what you've drawn our
1 attention to, isn't it? You literally read it, so it's on the record.
2 MR. KEHOE: It is on the record.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Nevertheless, if you want to --
4 MR. KEHOE: It's just so --
5 JUDGE ORIE: No objections, Mr. Tieger?
6 Mr. Registrar.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that becomes Exhibit D117.
8 JUDGE ORIE: D117 is admitted into evidence.
9 MR. KEHOE:
10 Q. Now, in air/land battle, General, are you familiar with concept
11 of deep battle or deep operations?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. What is that?
14 A. It's intended to deny the enemy freedom action, disrupt his lines
15 of communication and supply, disrupt and separate the first echelon and
16 second echelon forces from the third and the reinforcing groupings --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please speak a little bit
19 THE WITNESS: I beg your pardon. I'll try that again.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Could you please repeat your answer very slowly.
21 THE WITNESS: Absolutely, sir.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Known one was able to follow you, sir.
23 THE WITNESS: The deep operations are designed to disrupt and
24 nullify the enemy's fire power, to disrupt lines of communication and
25 supply, and in certain contexts, to separate the first and second
1 echelons or the second and third echelons from one another, to create and
2 craft the conditions for exploitation by deep strike forces, and the list
3 goes on. This is not an exhaustive analysis of the deep battle that you
4 have in front of you.
5 MR. KEHOE:
6 Q. Just by way of reference, General, what I have referenced in
7 front of you from the deep operations is page 146 of an expert report
8 filed by the Office of the Prosecutor by a Mr. Theunens.
9 So this has been a document that's been submitted to the Trial
11 MR. KEHOE: If we could just scroll up a bit and if I could just
12 pull it down just a little bit.
13 Q. Now, if we could go from that sentence, that's in paragraph
14 little I: "The deep battle is designed to nullify the enemy's fire
15 power, disrupt his command and control, destroy his supplies, and break
16 his morale. In conducting simultaneous attacks in depth, army forces
17 employ long-range intelligence-acquisition and targeting assets,
18 including electronic warfare and joint assets, to track enemy forces, to
19 complicate their operations, and to determine the effects of our strikes
20 in depth."
21 So the concept, here, General is to move the fighting back behind
22 the initial lines of confrontation, isn't it?
23 A. The concept, sir, is to move the fighting as deep as possible,
24 targeting enemy combatants and not civilians.
25 Q. My question -- did you understand my question, General?
1 A. I did.
2 Q. And the answer to my question is this -- is the answer to my
3 question to take the battle inside or deeper into the land than the
4 initial confrontation line?
5 A. And, sir, without meaning to sound argumentative, before I can
6 give you my answer to that, you'll have to define who you're fighting
8 Q. Well, sir, let me ask you a question about artillery.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Kehoe. Before we start with the artillery, I'm
10 looking at the clock. We have to finish within the next minute or two
11 minutes. Would you like to start with the artillery?
12 MR. KEHOE: Artillery is a long story, Judge, so, I mean, I
14 JUDGE ORIE: Then I would like to instruct you, Mr. Leslie, not
15 to speak with anyone about your testimony either already given or still
16 to be given. May I take it that it's more or less agreed that trying to
17 find the name of or at least the whereabouts of a certain person is
18 agreed, that the witness, as a result of his testimony today, I think it
19 was an offer by the witness to find some information, which of course
20 would, under normal circumstances, be directly related to your testimony,
21 but just to find that information without further discussing your
22 testimony. I take it that the parties would agree to that.
23 MR. KEHOE: That is fine with the Defence.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Mr. Tieger as well.
25 Then we'd like to see you back tomorrow, Mr. Leslie, the 23rd of
1 April, in the afternoon, quarter past 2.00 in courtroom I.
2 Mr. Leslie, I would like to add one thing. You earlier
3 apologised for not having a clear memory of events that took place quite
4 a while ago. There is no need to apologise for that. The only thing we
5 expect you to do is to answer the questions to the best of your
6 abilities; and if you have no recollection, there is no need to
7 apologise. It's just accepted, and you are invited to tell us if you
8 don't remember.
9 So, even if Mr. Kehoe immediately after that referred to you
10 refreshing your memory, nothing wrong with that. If what you saw the
11 last couple of days refreshes your memory, fine. If it doesn't refresh
12 your memory, you should not rely, unless you specifically tell us, on
13 anything you have read over the past few days which has not come back to
14 your memory.
15 Then we will adjourn until tomorrow, quarter past 2.00.
16 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.48 p.m.
17 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 23rd day of
18 April, 2008 at 2.15 p.m.