1 Monday, 31 January 2005
2 [Open session]
3 --- Upon commencing at 2.20 p.m.
4 [The accused entered court]
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, could you please
6 call the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President. This is case
8 number IT-01-47-T, Prosecutor versus Enver Hadzihasanovic and Amir Kubura
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
10 Appearances for the Prosecution, please.
11 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. Good afternoon, Your
12 Honours, counsel and to everyone in and around the courtroom. For the
13 Prosecution, Stefan Waespi and Daryl Mundis, assisted by our case manager
14 Andres Vatter.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. Appearances for the
16 Defence of General Hadzihasanovic, please.
17 MS. RESIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours. On
18 behalf of General Hadzihasanovic, Edina Residovic, counsel; Stephane
19 Bourgon, co-counsel; and Muriel Cauvin, legal assistant. Thank you.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And the other Defence team,
21 appearances, please.
22 MR. DIXON: Good afternoon, Your Honours. On behalf of Mr. Kubura
23 for today, Rodney Dixon, assisted by Mr. Nermin Mulalic. Thank you.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. On Monday, 31st
25 January 2005, we resume with our hearing. If there are no issues to be
1 raised, we are going to bring the witness into the courtroom, the witness
2 that has been envisaged for today.
3 [The witness entered court]
4 WITNESS: ROBERT STEWART
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, sir. First of
6 all, let me see whether you can hear the interpretation of my words in
7 English. If that is the case, can you please say so.
8 THE WITNESS: I hear you very well, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You have been called as a
10 Defence witness, and before we ask you to take the solemn declaration, we
11 would like to hear your name, your family name, the date of birth, the
12 place of birth and your nationality.
13 A. My name is Robert Alexander Stewart. I was born on the 7th of
14 July, 1949. I'm British, and I was born in Preston, Lancashire, United
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. Currently are you
17 employed? What is your position at the moment?
18 THE WITNESS: I am director of global risks for Group 4 Securicor,
19 Global Risks Limited.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In 1992 and 1993, what was your
21 position at the time when you were in Bosnia and Herzegovina?
22 THE WITNESS: I was a lieutenant colonel. I commanded the 1st
23 Battalion of the Cheshire Regiment. I was the British Battalion commander
24 in Central Bosnia, Northern Bosnia, and Southern Bosnia, which was my
25 operational area.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Have you already testified
2 either before an international court or a national court with regard to
3 the developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina, or is this the first time you
5 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, this is not the first time I have
6 testified. I have testified before the International Criminal Tribunal on
7 at least two occasions before.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You're saying that you have
9 testified on two occasions. Could you please tell the Chamber in which
10 cases have you testified and whether you have been called as a Prosecution
11 witness or a Defence witness on those occasions.
12 THE WITNESS: In the case of Blaskic, I was called by the Judges.
13 I can't remember in the case of Kordic, Santic, who called me.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Could you now read the text of
15 the solemn declaration.
16 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
17 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. You may be seated.
19 Before I give the floor to the Defence team, I would like to
20 provide you with certain explanation as to how the session will take
21 place. Since you have already testified before the International Criminal
22 Tribunal, you're familiar with the procedure. First of all, you are going
23 to answer the questions put to you by the Defence lawyers of General
24 Hadzihasanovic, whom you have already met with in preparation for your
25 testimony. The Defence lawyers are going to put to you questions within
1 the so-called examination-in-chief. Those questions must not be leading.
2 In other words, they must not suggest certain answers to you. This will
3 last about an hour and a half, and after that the Prosecution, on your
4 right-hand side, will proceed with their cross-examination. The time that
5 the Prosecution will have at their disposal is identical to the time used
6 by the Defence.
7 You already know that the questions that the Prosecution puts to
8 you may be somewhat longer and more leading, and you will sometimes be
9 able to answer them with a yes or no. After that stage, the Defence, if
10 they so wish, will be allowed to ask you some additional questions that
11 arise from the Prosecutor's questions. After that, the three Judges who
12 are in front of you will take the time to put questions to you either to
13 clarify the answers that you have given to one party or the other or
14 because the Judges will want to clarify some of the things that remain
15 vague in your answers. After that, both parties will be given an
16 opportunity to put questions to you arising from the Judges' questions.
17 The Defence will be given the floor last, and they will be allowed to put
18 any questions to you in order to clarify the matters.
19 This is in general terms how your testimony will develop. There
20 are two more things that I would like to emphasise.
21 First of all, you have taken the solemn declaration, which means
22 that you should not give us false testimony, but this is in your case
23 almost unnecessary. There is also another element that I have to inform
24 you about. That is that at the moment when you are asked a question, if
25 you believe that the answer may one day be used against you and
1 incriminate you, you may refuse to answer. The Chamber may then compel
2 you to provide your answer and guarantee you a form of immunity.
3 You understand that this is a verbal procedure, and we don't have
4 any documents. The two parties will have some documents to show you, but
5 in any case, your words are very important. If you do not understand a
6 question and if a question is too complicated for you to answer, you may
7 always demand the party who has put it to you to rephrase it. Whatever
8 problem you may encounter during your testimony, do not hesitate to ask
9 for the Judges' assistance.
10 Having said all this, I'm going to give the floor to the Defence
11 who are going to start with their examination-in-chief.
12 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honours.
13 Examined by Mr. Bourgon:
14 Q. Good afternoon, Colonel. We have had the opportunity of meeting
15 before your testimony today and before this trial Chamber, but for the
16 benefit of the transcript let me just -- allow me to introduce myself and
17 the colleagues I'm working with today. That is Stephane Bourgon, counsel
18 from Canada; Mrs. Edina Residovic, who is a counsel from Sarajevo; and Ms.
19 Muriel Cauvin, who is our legal assistant. Together, as you know, we
20 represent the accused General Hadzihasanovic, and my aim today is to ask
21 you a few questions with respect to your deployment in Central Bosnia in
23 A. Excuse me, 1992 I deployed.
24 Q. 1992. Sorry. And we will come back to that. Thank you very much
25 for the correction, Colonel.
1 Let me begin by simply saying that considering that we both speak
2 the same language, we will try to speak slowly so that the interpreters
3 can catch up with us for in simultaneous translation in both French and
4 B/C/S. I have a tendency to speak very fast. The interpreters are
5 probably already shaking because I am doing the witness today. I will try
6 to go slowly and I would ask you to do the same.
7 Colonel, how long have you been a member of the British Armed
9 A. I was a member of the British Armed Forces for 28 years; two years
10 as an officer cadet and 26 years as an officer.
11 Q. Colonel, I have some information here that pertains to your
12 career, and what I propose to do, with the consent of my colleague, is to
13 simply lead you through your CV in order to save time.
14 If I understand correctly, you are the son of an officer in the
15 British Armed Forces. At 18 years old you attended the Royal Military
16 Academy at Sandhurst, and at the age of 20, you were commissioned as an
17 officer with a specific qualification of infantry officer.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Bourgon, let me interrupt
19 you. You can put that question to the witness. However, your questions
20 are rather leading. We want to gain time, so theoretically we shouldn't
21 allow you to do that, but we are concerned with the time.
22 The Prosecution.
23 MR. WAESPI: Yes. We have certainly no objection to leading any
24 of the background information.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, then. Go ahead,
1 Mr. Bourgon.
2 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this is just about the
3 curriculum vitae.
4 Q. [In English] Colonel, your first assignment as a platoon
5 commander, as an infantry platoon commander was in Northern Ireland?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And at the age of 24, the government decided to send you back to
8 university to attend a degree in international politics and strategy, a
9 degree that you completed with a first class degree.
10 A. That's correct.
11 Q. You then returned to the Sandhurst Military Academy as an
12 instructor before attending the Army Staff College for a period of one
13 year, which was the first possible year that you could attend such a
14 high-level college.
15 A. That is correct, except I was also in Northern Ireland several
16 times in various positions in between that.
17 Q. And following your attendance at the Army Staff College, at 32
18 years old you were promoted major, and you became a company commander
19 where again you were sent in various positions in Northern Ireland?
20 A. I was a company commander in Northern Ireland for two years.
21 Q. Can you tell us a bit about your experience as a company commander
22 in Northern Ireland, whether anything specific happened to you while you
23 were there.
24 A. Yes. On the 6th of December, 1982, I had six men killed and 35
25 wounded in an operation carried out by the Irish National Liberation Army.
1 It was a bomb. And that, in my view, was something that very much marks
2 out those two years.
3 Q. Thank you, Colonel. If I understand, you were then posted or
4 transferred to the Ministry of Defence where you worked in two military
5 operations, one responsible for all deployments of the British army
6 overseas before being assigned as second in command of your own battalion,
7 the Cheshire, in Central America, where you went for six months?
8 A. That's correct. I also guarded the Queen in that period.
9 Q. And at 37 years old you were promoted to lieutenant colonel, which
10 is a very young age to achieve this rank, and you were then assigned as
11 the military assistant to the chairman of the NATO Military Committee
12 where, amongst other things, you accomplished the duties of speech writer?
13 A. That's correct.
14 Q. In 1991, you were -- still as a lieutenant colonel, you, finally,
15 achieved the dream of every military officer and that is of being assigned
16 as commander of your own regiment, the Cheshire Regiment.
17 A. Absolutely.
18 Q. And it is in August 1992 that you were informed about your
19 deployment to Central Bosnia where you deployed in September of 1992.
20 A. Yes. I personally deployed in September. My battalion was a bit
22 Q. You returned from Bosnia in -- on the 12th of May, 1992. You were
23 promoted to full colonel in 1994, and assigned as the chief policy in the
24 supreme allied headquarters in Belgium.
25 A. Not correct. I was returned on -- I think it was the 11th or 12th
1 of May, 1993, and I became chief of policy at supreme headquarters allied
2 powers Europe in I think it was January 1994.
3 Q. Thank you, Colonel. I think that was my mistake. It's not a
4 transcript mistake; I gave you the wrong information.
5 And you finally retired from the British forces in 1996.
6 A. January 1996; correct.
7 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Let us now move to some of the highlights of
8 what happened during your mission in Bosnia, and the first thing I would
9 like to confirm with you: While you were in Bosnia, did you keep notes or
10 did you maintain some type of a diary of your activities in Bosnia?
11 A. I started a diary when General Sir Jeremy Mackenzie, my old boss,
12 told me I had better do so because one day I may well be in a court of law
13 having to say what had happened during my time in Bosnia, so I started it
14 after my old colleague told me to start a diary. I did that.
15 Q. And, Colonel, has this diary been used by yourself when you
16 testified in previous trials, and do you have this diary with you today?
17 A. It was used by myself in previous trials, and I have it with me
19 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, it is quite possible
20 that during the testimony I ask the permission of the Chamber for the
21 witness to be allowed to refresh his memory by referring to his diary
22 which he kept during his stay in Bosnia.
23 Q. [In English] In addition to publishing a diary, or at least
24 maintaining your diary in Bosnia, did you also write a book on your
25 experience in Bosnia?
1 A. I did, because the army told me to do so.
2 Q. And if we compare today the contents of your book with the
3 contents of your diary, how would they be the same or differ?
4 A. I used the diary as the source for the book. Obviously a book
5 should not be like a diary, so sometimes I group things together in my
6 book, but really the source of what actually was happening was my diary,
7 because I wrote that normally between 7.15 and 0730 the morning following
8 the day before.
9 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Can you describe for the Trial Chamber the
10 steps that you took and the difficulties that you encountered in setting
11 up the British contingent of UNPROFOR in Central Bosnia.
12 A. Yeah, I can. It was an appalling task for a lieutenant colonel to
13 be given, because the Ministry of Defence, to start with, gave me no
14 mission whatsoever for three months, and everyone in this court will
15 understand that a military officer without a mission is sometimes like a
16 ship without a rudder.
17 I deployed with a small group of people into the Balkans, not sure
18 exactly which country we were to go to and make a plan, something like
19 September, October of 1992. For two weeks we tried to find a way to get
20 to Tuzla, having landed at Zagreb and borrowed some Land Rovers, and we
21 drove into Serbia, and we went into Bosnia by the bridge at Zvornik. It
22 was very difficult and quite dangerous, and we were blocked all the time.
23 And I thank the United Nations from the bottom of my heart for expelling
24 Serbia from the United Nations right at the time I was in the middle of
25 Serbia wearing a blue beret. But seriously, it was quite difficult, and
1 at the end of about a week, I went back to Zagreb via Banja Luka. I could
2 not get to Tuzla from that direction, and in Banja Luka, I met Air Chief
3 Marshal Sir Kenneth Hayr, who had flown in to see me and the other members
4 of the team, and he said, "We've decided you're to try to get into Bosnia
5 now from the south via Split. Take two aircraft now, take two Land
6 Rovers, and go and do it." I asked the air chief marshal what he wanted
7 me to achieve, and he said, "Try and find something that's a good plan."
8 Q. Thank you, Colonel. How much did you know about Central Bosnia
9 and the area that you finally deployed into?
10 A. Practically nothing.
11 Q. How much logistics did you have already in theatre when you
13 A. There was a British medical unit at Zagreb but no one anywhere
14 near Bosnia, so none.
15 Q. Did you encounter any difficulties in getting your soldiers over?
16 A. Well, that was much longer, much later, and by that time we had a
17 good -- good enough plan. So by that time, no. But getting my
18 reconnaissance team into Central Bosnia was extremely difficult.
19 Q. Now, Colonel, if I would ask you to compare the difficulties that
20 you encountered in setting up the British Battalion and the establishment
21 of the 3rd Corps of the army in Bosnia and Herzegovina, could you help the
22 Trial Chamber in this respect?
23 A. I don't think I could have done it. To try and establish a 3rd
24 Corps or any corps from nothing, with no real weapons, with no
25 organisation, it must have been an impossible task. And I believed -- and
1 I -- perhaps later you'll ask me again, but I believe the organisation of
2 the 3rd Corps was extremely fluid in consequence.
3 Q. Now, Colonel, did your organisation upon deployment have standard
4 operating procedures, established doctrine, and a history on which to base
5 its operations?
6 A. Of course. We were a regular army of a country that's been in
7 existence for a very long time, and standard operational procedures,
8 weapons, logistics, were all set already, so at least I didn't have to
9 worry about that sort of thing.
10 Q. How well did you know your officers when you deployed in Bosnia?
11 A. I had been commanding the battalion for, I should think, about 18
12 months by that time, but I had always been an officer of the Cheshire
13 Regiment, so I not only knew the officers below me, but I was serving with
14 some of the sons of the sergeants when I first joined the regiment, so I
15 knew the soldiers extremely well, too.
16 Q. My last two questions: How would that apply to the 3rd Corps of
17 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
18 A. I assume that the 3rd Corps was made up of people that were just
19 brought together. It must have been extremely difficult. I understand,
20 too, that the top people, you would try to get them from the old Yugoslav
21 national army, but that didn't necessarily work either. Some people came
22 from the navy, the Yugoslav navy, for example.
23 Q. And would there be a difference, Colonel, between the British
24 Battalion moving into a war zone as a neutral party if we try to compare
25 this with the 3rd Corps, an army which was fighting for its survival?
1 A. A huge difference. It's even more -- more difficult. If you're
2 fighting for your survival and you have these problems, you have a
3 practically impossible task, in my view.
4 Q. Can you comment, Colonel, on the rank structure within the army of
5 Bosnia and Herzegovina.
6 A. It's a question I asked myself right from the start, not only the
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina army but also the HVO as well. It was something I
8 tried to set myself to find out what was happening. It seemed to me that
9 the HVO did have some kind of rank structure, and I started to see ranks
10 appearing on the officers' dress from November, December time, 1992. I
11 never saw such rank in the BiH. I fundamentally just used to allocate
12 titles rather arbitrarily. For example, General Hadzihasanovic, although
13 I didn't necessarily think General Hadzihasanovic, as he is, of course,
14 was a general appointed specifically by rank at that time. "Commander"
15 was a way around this problem, to call someone a commander. It works at
16 all levels.
17 Q. And early in time, Colonel, if we compare the HVO and the 3rd
18 Corps of the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, how would they compare?
19 A. They were not like my -- my unit. The HVO had organisation. The
20 HVO had weapons, equipment, and resources. The BiH had something but not
21 very much.
22 Q. And the HVO?
23 A. The HVO had a lot more, for example, artillery and even the odd
24 tank, which I didn't really see much in evidence among the BiH.
25 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Now, you set up the British Battalion. In
1 order to avoid leading you, where did you set up the British Battalion in
2 Central Bosnia?
3 A. We found a school on the outskirts of Vitez, Your Honour. It was
4 empty, so we were quite careful. We didn't want to get accusations that
5 we had emptied a school of children. It was empty at the time and we made
6 our base there. We found an empty factory at Gornji Vakuf, some two hours
7 to the south, and we based ourselves on those two locations. And I wanted
8 and I was instructed in the end to get to Tuzla, which was about another
9 180 kilometres north, where eventually I found the air field deserted and
10 put a company location up there by the beginning of December, 1992.
11 Q. And, Colonel, were there any strategic reasons why you chose Vitez
12 and those other locations you spoke about, or was it simply a matter of
13 logistics and availability?
14 A. It was a mixture of everything. We initially wanted to be around
15 Vitez because there was a United Nations High Commission for Refugees
16 depot meant to be there, which opened up again when we were there. We
17 were given -- kind of given an operational area that extended from Tuzla
18 all the way down to Tomislavgrad, and so we tried to position ourselves in
19 appropriate places to cover that sort of area. I only had at a maximum
20 900 men and some women, and it was -- we were quite stretched.
21 Q. And, Colonel, do you -- based on what you could experience in your
22 relationship with both the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the HVO,
23 would you say that the HVO benefited from the fact that the British
24 Battalion was located in Vitez?
25 A. They might have done. They were very helpful, particularly
1 Blaskic helping us getting in there, and even Siljeg down in Tomislavgrad.
2 They helped us get in. They guided us a little bit across the mountains.
3 We talked to them. But equally I talked, as soon as I could, to the BiH
4 and tried to speak to the Bosnian Serb army, for that matter, as well.
5 Q. Colonel, when the British Battalion was fully deployed in Central
6 Bosnia and ready to operate, can you describe what the situation was like
7 at the time between the ABiH and the HVO.
8 A. As we deployed, there was tension and some battles going on
9 between the BiH and the HVO. As I brought my battalion group in across
10 the mountains, 220 kilometres from the south, we were very worried that we
11 would actually be blocked by the fighting around Novi Travnik and
12 particularly there at that time, but previous to that when I was on the
13 reconnaissance and in the setting-up stage, when I was on my own in
14 Central Bosnia, there had been some quite serious incidents and fighting
15 which sustained itself over perhaps a couple of weeks, perhaps three
16 weeks, between the BiH and the HVO around the town of Travnik, Novi
17 Travnik, and Vitez. So it wasn't a particularly -- it wasn't a
18 particularly easy environment in which we had to set up.
19 Q. Now, Colonel, when you moved in, was the situation you found
20 yourself in, was it as it was described to you before you deployed or was
21 it different?
22 A. Well, the British really, Your Honours, had no idea what was
23 happening in Central Bosnia. The only briefing I had in the Ministry of
24 Defence was one and a half hours on the history of the Balkans, which
25 ended with the death of Tito ten years before. There was a briefing in
1 Zagreb given by various people, including Colonel Mark Cook who was the
2 commander of the medical unit, and a major, Major Colin Doyle, who had
3 worked with Carrington or Owen. But that was it. It was general, and it
4 was helpful insofar as it gave us a flavour, but the truth of the matter
5 is I had no intelligence, real intelligence, what I would call
6 intelligence on what was happening in Central Bosnia, Northern Bosnia, and
7 Tomislavgrad down in the south until I found it myself.
8 Q. And, Colonel, did you expect when you arrived to see the HVO and
9 the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina fighting each other?
10 A. No, I didn't, but as I knew nothing about what was going on, I
11 hoped I -- I wasn't too surprised.
12 Q. Now, initially who did you deal with, both with the HVO and the
13 ABiH, and what can you tell us about those persons?
14 A. Firstly, Blaskic, Kordic for the HVO, and initially until I met
15 Enver Hadzihasanovic, Dzemal Merdan for the ABiH.
16 Q. What could you tell us about those persons in a few words;
17 Blaskic, Kordic, Merdan, and Hadzihasanovic?
18 A. Blaskic was a professional officer. I liked him, and I thought he
19 would help. Kordic was not a professional officer. He was okay, but he
20 was -- seemed to me a bit unguided or unwired. Merdan, Merdan is a
21 fantastic officer. In my view from the start totally trustworthy. And
22 Enver Hadzihasanovic was not far off that either. I knew Merdan more than
23 Enver Hadzihasanovic, but I had great respect for both.
24 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Let us now move to January of 1993, and I
25 would simply ask, what was the focus of your attention towards the middle
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 of January 1993?
2 A. The real problem for January 1993 was fighting around Gornji
3 Vakuf. The Commander Siljeg of the HVO was pushing north from
4 Tomislavgrad with tanks and artillery, trying to take or destroy Gornji
5 Vakuf. I had a company in Gornji Vakuf, and I spent at least two weeks
6 plus every day on the ground in Gornji Vakuf trying to stop the fighting.
7 And on the 13th of January, my driver was killed, my escort driver was
8 shot as he drove his armoured Warrior through Gornji Vakuf. So January
9 was not a good month for me.
10 Q. And, Colonel, how did the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina react to
11 the offensive being carried on by the HVO?
12 A. I thought they were fighting rifles with sticks. The combatants,
13 the distance between the opposing forces was well out of rifle range. The
14 rifle, any rifle, has a combat range of 200 to 300 metres, Your Honours.
15 Even a hand-held anti-tank missile, maximum range 500 metres. And the way
16 this battle was taking place was with maximum safety to the HVO, who were
17 using artillery, mortars, rocket launchers, and tanks, all of which had a
18 range that could easily allow them to engage at something of the order of
19 a thousand metres plus, apart from the mortars -- no, sorry, the mortars,
20 the 81-millimetre mortars got 5.000 metres. So it was a very unequal
21 contest and Siljeg was actually attacking Gornji Vakuf by the simple
22 process of attrition, destroying house after house, and I really didn't
23 know what to do about it. I just was actually was doing my very best to
24 try to stop the fighting because my instructions from the United Nations
25 were effectively to be convoy escorts.
1 Q. Now, Colonel, at this stage how did the ABiH react, from your
2 observations? Did they retaliate? Did they hold back? What -- how did
3 they react?
4 A. Well, I don't think they could have done anything because the
5 battle range for which they had effective weapons was too short. But
6 equally, when I had -- and I spoke to all the commanders on the ground and
7 the representatives from 3rd Corps and the HVO representatives led by
8 Siljeg, quite frankly the BiH just did not want this battle and it was
9 probably caused, or we assumed from our intelligence, our assessment was
10 that it was caused because perhaps Gornji Vakuf had been given to the
11 Bosnian Croats in the Vance-Owen Plan.
12 Q. Now, Colonel, can you help us just with the -- more information
13 concerning the gentleman you name as being Siljeg. Who is he in the HVO?
14 A. Well, he -- he was the -- he was the commander of the southern
15 region of Bosnia for the HVO, and my assessment was that Siljeg - let's
16 call him Brigadier Siljeg - commanded that region and based it on
17 Tomislavgrad. And the central region of the HVO was commanded by
19 Q. Thank you, Colonel. I'd like now to show you some documents which
20 I will use throughout your testimony.
21 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I would like to ask
22 the usher to give us the files, the binders with the documents, and we
23 have a sufficient number of copies for all the parties in the courtroom.
24 Q. Colonel, as these documents are being distributed, I would like to
25 have the answer to one question, and that is did you have access in your
1 capacity as commander of the British Battalion to orders or other
2 correspondence being exchanged by the warring factions, either between
3 themselves or internally, to any of them, and did you expect to have
4 access to these documents?
5 A. I didn't expect to have access to any such documents because my
6 instructions were to remain neutral. Sometimes I had access to documents
7 that I particularly initiated, perhaps a cease-fire agreement, and
8 sometimes we might, within my organisation although I cannot recall, have
9 been given command documents, but I cannot recall seeing any.
10 Q. Now, Colonel, if I would show you some of these documents, some of
11 the orders issued by either the HVO or the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
12 would you feel that you would be able to help us as to whether these
13 documents reflect the situation that you lived in Central Bosnia in 1993?
14 A. I will certainly do my best.
15 Q. Can I ask you, Colonel, to turn to tab 3 of the binder that you
16 have in front of you. I would ask you that -- to read this document and
17 tell me if it reflects the situation as you saw it in January of 1993.
18 A. May I just look at my diary?
19 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, may the witness
20 consult his diary?
21 THE WITNESS: I think that's right. I think situation is
22 reflected there.
23 MR. BOURGON:
24 Q. Thank you, Colonel.
25 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, for the record, the
1 document in English is number 3. It is DH0561.
2 Q. [In English] Colonel, I'd like to draw your attention to this
3 document, and can you tell me whether what comes out of this document is
4 that the HVO were attacking in Gornji Vakuf.
5 A. Yes, they were.
6 Q. And can you tell me, Colonel, what the purpose of this document
7 would be from a command point of view, and I draw your attention to the
8 last two paragraphs.
9 A. This is an instruction by a commander to try and establish a
10 cease-fire among his units. The development of outright hostilities in
11 Gornji Vakuf over this period worried me a great deal, and I think I
12 received a request, maybe from Commander Hadzihasanovic, to try and help.
13 And I know that from now on, I was in the field practically for most of
14 the day and most of the night, down in Gornji Vakuf.
15 Q. I ask you now, Colonel, to turn to document at tab number 2. This
16 document, for the needs of the transcript, is DH0557.
17 Can you tell us, Colonel, what the commander is trying to do with
18 this document?
19 A. This is an instruction to not allow -- not allow the situation to
20 escalate for soldiers of the BiH, to exercise great caution and not to do
21 anything such as open fire unless it was absolutely necessary. I would
22 interpret this document, as a commander receiving it, that I wasn't to
23 open fire unless I actually had to do so to defend life.
24 Q. And could you think of any reasons why this action of General
25 Hadzihasanovic was good or bad in the circumstances?
1 A. Well, the BiH in Gornji Vakuf were trying to just hold the line.
2 It wasn't just that they were -- by Bugojno they had the Bosnian Serb army
3 within a few kilometres. I mean, a -- again an impossible situation for
4 any commander down there. And this is an instruction to say, "Look, let's
5 not make it worse. Please, please, don't open fire. Don't give the HVO
6 an excuse to attack us."
7 Q. Can you now turn, Colonel, to tab number 1. And this is a
8 document which bears the number DH0554. And, Colonel, I would ask you to
9 help us with what General Hadzihasanovic is trying to do with this
11 A. It doesn't say it here, but I'm making the assumption that this is
12 a request from Enver Hadzihasanovic to the BiH command to say, he's
13 already in a conflict with the Bosnian Serb army, front lines at Bugojno,
14 and this, I assume, is a request to ask them should he enter into conflict
15 with the HVO, because actually there was enough -- there was enough
16 fighting towards his units already, and he had to -- he would have the
17 morale of his soldiers to think about. How do soldiers on the front line
18 sit there and take, time after time, incoming fire and are ordered not to
19 respond in any way? That is very difficult.
20 Q. And, Colonel, could General Hadzihasanovic, could he not simply
21 order to respond by himself without going to his superior headquarters?
22 A. I'm sure he could have ordered to respond without going to
23 superior headquarters, but Enver Hadzihasanovic, the one thing he isn't is
24 unintelligent, and he would be trying hard to maintain the status quo with
25 the HVO, because the situation is difficult enough there already.
1 Q. And can you see a reason why the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina
2 would like to avoid a conflict at all costs with the HVO at this
3 particular moment when you are in Gornji Vakuf?
4 A. Well, to me it's obvious: They're very stretched. They don't
5 have ammunition. They don't have weapons. They don't have
6 reinforcements. They don't want to fight with the HVO. This was apparent
7 right the way through my tour. It was not -- most times that I ever got
8 close to the fighting, which was quite a lot, actually, I never saw
9 actually the HVO -- sorry, the BiH starting something. It was normally a
11 Q. Now, was the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina involved into any
12 other battles at that time?
13 A. All over. The front line stretched intermittently from the area
14 of Tomislavgrad throughout Bugojno. I mean, we had to make extensive
15 diversions to get into Central Bosnia to avoid crossing the front lines.
16 And then they went up to, you know, Travnik, then north of Travnik, up to
17 Maglaj, and all the way up to Tuzla. I mean, it -- it was a massive front
18 line to defend. And it wasn't like the First World War; it wasn't trench
19 systems. Fundamentally, it was sort of centres of resistance, but to try
20 and cross them is very dangerous.
21 Q. Colonel, I'll now ask you to turn to document number 4, which is
22 also an order issued by General Hadzihasanovic.
23 For the transcript, this document bears the number DH0562.
24 A. Uh-huh.
25 Q. Can you tell us, Colonel, what General Hadzihasanovic is trying to
1 do with this order?
2 A. If you look at the subparagraphs, "Firmly hold the lines reached
3 toward the Chetniks," would be read as: Hold the line against the Bosnian
4 Serb army in the region of Bugojno and elsewhere; stand by to repel HVO
5 attacks, second line. Increase the state of alert of all units. Make
6 sure that Dzemal Merdan who at the time was collocated with my company, B
7 Company, is informed and coordinates and is actually the responsible
8 coordinator commander in the region. And by the way, we also had HVO
9 officers in my base at the same time. And this is important by all means
10 to prevent the conflict from spreading. I think that's terribly
12 Q. Colonel, could you comment on the last paragraph. Why would a
13 commander feel the need to put this comment at the end of his order?
14 A. Because the soldiers are going to be really angry. How would you
15 like to have your butt kicked and not be able to respond? Effectively
16 that's what's happening to these BiH soldiers. And I'm sorry to put it in
17 those terms, Your Honour, but that's actually how soldiers view it.
18 Q. Thank you, Colonel. I'll now ask you to turn to tab number 5,
19 which is a document coming from BH command in Kiseljak and dated the 17th
20 of January, 1993.
21 As a first question, Colonel, can you tell us what is the BH
22 command Kiseljak?
23 A. This was the command headquarters of the United Nations under, at
24 this time, General Phillippe Morillon, a French officer, now a member of
25 the European Parliament and a friend. And BH command, then going up
1 beyond that, UN headquarters had another headquarters in Zagreb. And this
2 is -- I think this is going to Bosnia-Herzegovina command in Zagreb from
4 Q. And what is the object of this document, Colonel, and who is it
5 addressed to?
6 A. This is a demand by the HVO. It refers to a demand by the HVO
7 which I remember very well because I was infuriated by it, that
8 fundamentally the BiH unconditionally surrender in Gornji Vakuf, which,
9 quite frankly, was totally against the expectation of the United Nations.
10 Q. And why would such a document be addressed, Colonel, to -- I look
11 at the box in the top part where it says General Halilovic and Brigadier
12 Petkovic. Do you know who these individuals are, and why would such a
13 document be addressed to them?
14 A. Because they are the representative chiefs of staff of the BiH and
15 the HVO. So they are -- this is a warning document that this action by
16 the HVO is well-noted and probably illegal.
17 Q. Now, Colonel, if I bring you to --
18 A. May I just say that's probably who this document is directed to
19 rather than the UN.
20 Q. If I draw your attention to the last line, last sentence in
21 paragraph 1, where it says: "We further believe that both the Bosnian
22 Presidency forces and the HVO are moving reinforcements into the area in
23 preparation for hostilities." Can you comment on this specific sentence
24 in terms of its impact on the situation in Gornji Vakuf, or its potential
1 A. If you have a fire and you put petrol on it, it becomes a bigger
2 fire. This is a reinforcement which is understandable from a military
3 perspective, but it becomes political dynamite and will make a serious,
4 serious war start quickly. And that is the reason why I wanted to stay in
5 Gornji Vakuf as long as possible, to try and get some kind of truce, some
6 kind of ceasefire organised.
7 Q. Now, Colonel, what -- could the ABiH and the HVO bring in
8 reinforcements, if you know, based on what you saw on the ground?
9 A. The HVO would reinforce from the south with no problem. They
10 would come across the mountains from Tomislavgrad.
11 The BiH would have much more of a problem because there was, as I
12 understand it, as I recall, HVO units blocking the routes -- route south.
13 But equally, they did try. I recall they did try to reinforce as well.
14 Q. Thank you, Colonel. I now ask you to turn to tab number 7. Now,
15 this is a document which is addressed from the head of the Regional Centre
16 Split and addressed to Zagreb. Do you know, what is the Regional Centre
17 in Split and to which headquarters this document is addressed to?
18 A. This is not something I saw, but it looks to me like the European
19 Community Monitoring Mission documents, and it looks to me like the
20 ambassador sending a report to his headquarters in Zagreb.
21 Q. And can you quickly glance through this document and say what the
22 ambassador is reporting to his headquarters in Zagreb?
23 A. Yes, he -- this gentleman, Mr. Beaussou, another very good French
24 diplomat, had chaired a meeting at probably my request between the HVO and
25 the BiH in Gornji Vakuf. The local commander of the HVO -- actually, it
1 was very difficult to get Siljeg. I sometimes had to go and get him
2 myself to these meetings. Siljeg says that two of his soldiers had been
3 killed by snipers, which was possible, I don't know, and he used that as
4 an excuse to break it up. And it was just an example, yet just another
5 example of many that I witnessed of delaying tactics with regard to trying
6 to get some kind of peace, peaceful situation. I mean, the two men may
7 have been killed, but as I remember, so many civilians were dying at the
8 time it astonished me.
9 Q. Colonel, I'd like to draw your attention the second paragraph,
10 where you see the number 2 being there, and then there is a paragraph
11 right below this, and the paragraph reads as follows: "What is at stake
12 there is not a local problem. The two local commanders did not look very
13 much like enemies. It's certainly a political purpose close to ethnic
14 cleansing." Would you agree with this conclusion and were you able to
15 notice such a conclusion?
16 A. That's what I thought was happening and that this was some kind of
17 preemptive move. Which I could never understand. Why would they
18 preemptively take a place if they were going to be handed it anyway? Why
19 would they destroy it? But quite frankly, my read intelligence-wise, the
20 purpose of attacking Gornji Vakuf was to take it in anticipation of the
22 Q. Thank you, Colonel. I ask you now to turn to tab number 8.
23 MR. WAESPI: Just before we do that, if the record could be
24 reflected that we discussed in tab 7 DH0648.
25 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] I thank my colleague for this
1 remark. I forgot to mention it. Perhaps my colleague will be using the
2 document later on during his cross-examination.
3 Q. Colonel, I now turn to this document at tab number 8, and this is
4 a document dated on the 25th of January, 1993. I would like you to take a
5 few minutes to look at this document while I request permission from the
6 Chamber to use the document because it is, in fact, a new document.
7 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, this is a document on
8 which will figure on our final list of documents. This document has been
9 disclosed to the Prosecution, and we ask for permission to be able to use
10 it with today's witness.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Prosecution.
12 MR. WAESPI: [Previous translation continues] ... no objection,
13 Mr. President.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
16 Q. Colonel, I would like to direct your attention to this document
17 and to go to the third page and let us know, if you can, what this
18 document is talking about and whether you were involved in any way with
19 this document or with the events discuss in this document.
20 A. Yes, I was.
21 Q. How was that?
22 A. Well, I was trying to get the fighting to stop, and if you look at
23 the third page, it refers to the conditions laid down by Siljeg, the HVO
24 commander, which was unconditional surrender. It refers to the fact that
25 I told Colonel Siljeg that he would answer for all his crimes one day -
1 some hope - and I pointed out that the deliberate targeting of civilians
2 was a crime against humanity. I'm sorry, Your Honours, I'm probably
3 incorrect in my legal understanding what a crime against humanity is, but
4 whatever it is, shooting, shelling civilians is against the Geneva
6 Q. And, Colonel, the information contained as to what was happening,
7 who was it addressed to, how and why? I'm talking about the third page,
8 where it says at paragraph 2, "The commander of 1 Cheshire has spent the
9 last five days in Gornji Vakuf."
10 A. I was the commander of the 1st Cheshires, and I -- I got through
11 to the commander of British forces in Split by my national means, because
12 I was so frustrated by the lack of UN action to actually achieve anything.
13 We'd been there for so long, and meanwhile the town was being shelled to
14 bits. I'd lost soldiers and had wounded, and I got through to the
15 commander of the British forces and I pleaded with him -- well, didn't
16 plead, I just said, Can you do it? He said yes, and he contacted Geneva
17 and spoke to Lord Owen.
18 Q. Looking at the second page of this document, specifically at
19 paragraph number 2, do you believe that this is linked to what you did,
20 and were you aware of this?
21 A. Well, to be honest, I wasn't aware of what was happening as a
22 consequence of my request to Brigadier Cummings, the British commander,
23 because I was overwhelmed by the situation, but it might be that I had
24 some influence in getting something done at the top to try and stop this
1 Q. And the order at the end of this document issued by Petkovic as a
2 cease-fire, did you use this document and how did this cease-fire actually
3 take place?
4 A. I was in a conference room, a conference room at Gornji Vakuf. It
5 wasn't a conference room, it was a room with chairs and a table. And I
6 was chairing the meeting. Siljeg was there, and so I think was Merdan and
7 various other people. And I was summoned away from the table and told
8 that Petkovic had given instructions that the fighting by the HVO was to
9 stop immediately. And I didn't have any paper on it, I was just told that
10 had come from Geneva. I went back into the conference room and I said to
11 Siljeg I had received information that the fighting was to stop
12 immediately and he was to do that on my word, but it seemed to me from the
13 look on his face that he knew that already before he had come to the
15 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Do you remember after getting this
16 cease-fire, after two weeks of intensive work in Gornji Vakuf, do you
17 recall what you did next in your actions as commander of BritBat?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Do you recall getting back to your battalion? Did you go back to
20 your battalion or did you get involved in any specific activities?
21 A. If I might, I would find out by looking at my diary.
22 Q. I would refer you to your diary, then, for the date of 25 January
24 Now, my first question, Colonel, before you look at this page of
25 your diary, is: While you were in Gornji Vakuf, were you aware of what was
1 going on in Busovaca during the same time frame?
2 A. I was aware of it, but I couldn't deal with it personally because
3 I felt my point of concentrated effort had to be down in Gornji Vakuf. So
4 it would be dealt with by my second in command.
5 Q. And, Colonel, I ask you to look at the document at tab number 9,
6 which is a milinfosum dated 21 January, 1993, which is the period you were
7 in Gornji Vakuf, and I ask you to look at section 2 on page 2 where it
8 says "Busovaca," and whether you can tell me know whether this paragraph
9 reflects information that you were aware of.
10 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] For the LiveNote, this document
11 bears the number DH612, and at this stage it has been marked for
13 THE WITNESS: Yes, I was aware. This is the Kacuni checkpoint.
14 MR. BOURGON:
15 Q. What can you tell us, Colonel, about the Kacuni checkpoint?
16 A. Well, it was on the main supply route into Sarajevo via Kiseljak.
17 It was a place quite close to the front line positions of BiH and HVO, and
18 it was established by the ABiH, and it was quite difficult for us to break
19 through it. Not break through it, negotiate our way through it.
20 Q. Now, we'll get back into future questions on the checkpoint
21 itself, but I draw your attention to the middle of the document, where it
22 says that: "Between 2000 Alpha and 2100 Alpha..." so 8.00 and 9.00 in the
23 evening "... two HVO checkpoints were erected at either end of the town
24 centre. ... At approximately the same time a quad of 50 cal. mounted on a
25 flatbed was deployed on the road south of the town ... All main roads in
1 and out of Busovaca were then controlled." And between 9.00, or 2100,
2 Alpha and 0200 Alpha, or 2.00 in the morning, "... the Dutch transport
3 squadron reported a number of explosions in the town. And on the 21st of
4 January a daylight recce confirmed that eight shops had been badly damaged
5 by fire and some form of explosive."
6 Now, at the end of the document, it says, "The attack of 20/21
7 January 1993 appears to be a pre-planned, coordinated attack on the Muslim
9 Were you aware of this situation while you were in Gornji Vakuf?
10 A. Yes, in general, but not in detail, because I had to hand over
11 responsibility for that area, probably to my second in command or my
12 Operations Officer. But, yes, I am still responsible for what happened.
13 Q. And, Colonel, as you travelled back from Gornji Vakuf into the
14 area of Busovaca and Kacuni, what was the situation like when you
15 returned? And now, of course, you can, as you requested, look at your
16 diary for the date of 25th of January.
17 A. Well, we had the main route into Sarajevo, the main supply route,
18 the most important route to actually resupply by land, Sarajevo, blocked
19 by at least three new roadblocks, which was totally counter to the way I
20 wanted things to happen because I was very conscious that not just my -- I
21 was not just responsible for my area, I was responsible for ensuring that
22 convoys got into Sarajevo to help the people of Sarajevo. And this did
23 not help. So that was a driver for me, to try and open these roadblocks.
24 And yes, Busovaca was cut off, probably commanded, I think at the time by
25 Kordic, and I think at some stage I visited Kordic, and I certainly went
1 down to Kacuni.
2 Q. Now, based on your diary, and I draw your attention to the second
3 last paragraph from the bottom on the 25th. Do you recall what actions if
4 any were taken concerning the checkpoint or the roadblock set up by the
5 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina army and what you felt about this checkpoint?
6 A. I was quite angry about this checkpoint. It was a big lorry, Your
7 Honour, cross -- across the road, with logs on it, and they had put the
8 tires down. It was difficult to move a lorry like that quickly. And I
9 went -- I sent one of my company commanders, Major Philip Jennings, and
10 told him don't come back unless you've got this thing opened. And he
12 Q. Colonel did you -- I'm sorry.
13 A. He hadn't. I went down, and I think I went with -- I went to 3
14 Corps headquarters, asked Merdan to accompany me, and went down there with
15 him, I think, but my diary might not be specific on that. I know that I
16 somehow got it opened.
17 Q. Well, Colonel, in your diary it says in the second to last
18 paragraph that from your battalion headquarters you received information
19 that the corps commander had agreed that the two Warriors could replace
20 the checkpoint. Do you remember that?
21 A. Absolutely, I do. Sorry. I do. We put two Warriors there.
22 Q. And your diary then says that you went to the commander of the 3rd
23 Corps that evening to complain that they had really started this trouble.
24 Do you recall this visit to General Hadzihasanovic?
25 A. Yes. It's typical of both of us that we would go and complain. I
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 certainly would go and complain, because that really infuriated me, that
3 Q. And at the end of this page on the 25 of September [sic], it
4 basically says that you arranged a cease-fire for 6.00 on the 26th of
5 January with General Hadzihasanovic while Brigadier Roddy Cordy-Simpson
6 was doing the same with Blaskic in Kiseljak. Do you remember this?
7 A. Yes. This was a coordinated effort on both our parts. Roddy
8 Cordy-Simpson, I knew that Blaskic was in his headquarters in Kiseljak so
9 I requested that he would go and do that and I would go and see Enver
10 Hadzihasanovic. That's correct.
11 Q. I ask you, Colonel, to turn to tab number 10 in your binder and
12 let me know whether this document, issued on the 25th of January by
13 General Hadzihasanovic, is actually the cease-fire that you had arranged
14 with him that evening.
15 A. Yes, it is, because the date is exact: 0600, 25th.
16 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, there's an error in
17 the transcript, probably made by me. Page 33, line 3. There's mention of
18 the 25th of September, but it should be the 25th of January. Thank you,
19 Mr. President.
20 Q. [In English] Colonel, so this would be the order issued by General
21 Hadzihasanovic in response to your request for a cease-fire at 6.00 on the
22 26th of January?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. I'll now ask you to turn to tab 11, and actually to take a quick
25 look at tabs 11, 12, and 13, and inform us what General Hadzihasanovic is
1 trying to do with those three correspondence addressed to the commander of
2 the Central Operative Zone of the HVO in Bosnia.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Prosecution.
4 MR. WAESPI: [Previous translation continues] ... just for the
5 sake of the record, if my learned colleague could always indicate if he
6 refers to tabs which actual exhibit numbers he means that have already
7 been introduced because later it's almost impossible to trace back the
8 exhibits if we talk about tabs as opposed to DH and then the number.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. It would be better to say
10 document 632, for instance.
11 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Yes. After these three documents,
12 Mr. President, we will have a break. I have one more question about these
13 documents. I would like us to leave the binder with the witness so that
14 we can speed things up after the break, if my colleague has no objection.
15 Q. [In English] Colonel, as the last question before the break, can
16 you tell us what General Hadzihasanovic is trying to do with those
18 And I will, for the sake of the transcript, say the document at
19 tab 11 is number 0632; the document at tab 12 is 0633; and the document at
20 tab 13 is 0634.
21 Colonel, what in your opinion is General Hadzihasanovic trying to
22 do with those three documents?
23 A. He's trying to say to the HVO commander that some -- some rumours
24 or propaganda put out is not true, that people have not been so-called
25 ethnically cleansed from various areas. He's trying to say that there
1 should be -- he should cease fire immediately. He's also trying to stop
2 multiple rocket launchers and Nora, which we always called a
3 155-millimetre gun, firing. So he's requesting or ordering, if he can
4 order the HVO, but certainly Commander Hadzihasanovic certainly knew
5 Blaskic. They were old acquaintances at the very least.
6 Q. And how is he proposing to solve the situation?
7 A. Now you have me for the moment. I haven't read -- is there a
8 solution to this? I can't see. Stop firing is the answer.
9 Q. Maybe we can look -- Colonel, I will leave you those documents for
10 you to look at at the break.
11 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I think we can have
12 the break now.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We are going to have the break,
14 Colonel. During the break, you may consult the binder so that you will be
15 able to respond more quickly to the questions that will continue to be put
16 to you. We will resume at about ten past four.
17 --- Recess taken at 3.45 p.m.
18 --- On resuming at 4.17 p.m.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, could you please
20 have a word with somebody to lower the temperature in the courtroom. It
21 seems to be very hot, maybe 30 something degrees.
22 I'm going to give the floor to the Defence.
23 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
24 Q. [In English] Welcome back, Colonel. When we left before the break
25 you informed the Trial Chamber that yourself had arranged a cease-fire for
1 the 26th of January at 6.00, with General Hadzihasanovic, while
2 Cordy-Simpson, Roddy Cordy-Simpson did the same with Blaskic in a
3 concerted effort. You confirmed that the order issued by General
4 Hadzihasanovic with respect to the issuing of the cease-fire, and we were
5 just discussing those three documents at tabs 11, 12, and 13 concerning
6 measures that were taken by General Hadzihasanovic with his counterpart in
7 the HVO.
8 And again for the transcript, these are documents DH632 for
9 identification, documents DH633 for identification, and document DH634 for
11 Now, having looked at those documents, Colonel, can you tell me,
12 looking at tab 13, the first paragraph, what General Hadzihasanovic is
13 proposing to do to resolve the situation in this area.
14 A. He is proposing that there be delegations between both sides,
15 should meet and somehow sort out any problems that there are. And of
16 course I would either provide an officer or be part of it myself.
17 Q. And would you say, Colonel, that this was the good course of
18 action for General Hadzihasanovic in the circumstances?
19 A. Yes, I would.
20 Q. Now, if I refer to your diary for 26th of January, there is a
21 paragraph in the morning that deals with your reaction when Philip
22 Jennings who was, I guess, officer commanding of one of your companies,
23 had problems with the roadblock in Kacuni and that you contacted Dzemal
24 Merdan in Zenica. Do you recall this incident and can you provide us
25 information in this respect?
1 A. Yes. I was upset because this roadblock was still not open, Your
2 Honour, and I dispatched an officer to sort it out; Major Jennings. He
3 failed, and so I was quite angry. And so I telephoned Mr. Merdan in
4 Zenica and I said the Muslims -- the Bosnian BiH were in some way to blame
5 because the roadblock was still not open, and they said -- I said they
6 were holding me up. And Mr. Merdan offered to come and help me open it.
7 Q. And did Mr. Merdan show up, and how was the situation resolved, if
8 it was?
9 A. Well, he did come and we went together to the roadblock, and then
10 at this point I witnessed a problem from the BiH because they wouldn't
11 accept Mr. Merdan's instructions to open the roadblock. And then after
12 awhile of discussion, it was agreed and I pressed and I spoke to the
13 command as well, and I assured him that I would be leaving two Warriors
14 there to ensure the safety of the roadblock, is the way I put it.
15 Q. Now, this apparent lack of control that you are describing, was
16 this an isolated incident or is this something that saw on more than one
18 A. I saw it on several occasions because local BiH were not
19 necessarily totally understanding how command and control should work.
20 And indeed, there were often quite heated exchanges when people like
21 Mr. Merdan tried to give instructions to say open the roadblock or stop
22 this, stop that. There were quite heated exchanges, which I think stemmed
23 -- came from the fact that these HVO people were local people defending
24 their own homes, for example.
25 Q. And, Colonel, would you -- in the end was the incident resolved?
1 Was the roadblock actually removed or at least replaced by those two
2 Warriors that you are mentioning?
3 A. Yes, it was. It was indeed. But it took a while. So my anger
4 with Major Jennings was unfounded and I sometimes feel sorry that I was
5 angry with him.
6 Q. I ask you, Colonel, to go to tab 14, which is a milinfosum number
7 87, dated the 26th of January. I would ask you to look at page 2 at the
8 top, the section called Busovaca.
9 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] This is a new document that has
10 been added to the list. This is a milinfosum and the date is 26 January.
11 I would like to ask the Chamber to allow me to discuss this document with
12 the witness.
13 Q. Is this, Colonel, the paragraph that describes what happened at
14 the Kacuni checkpoint?
15 A. I think it is.
16 Q. I now refer to you tab 15. This document bears the number 1738,
17 and I would ask you to say what General Hadzihasanovic is doing with this
18 document and what is he ordering to the commander of the 333 Brigade?
19 A. This is a clear instruction to 333rd Brigade that they are to
20 remove the barricade, stop any kind of bad behaviour such as looting, and
21 have a decent attitude towards the United Nations.
22 Q. And were you ever made aware that this order was actually issued
23 in this form?
24 A. Not in a written form, but I certainly believed that Commander or
25 General Hadzihasanovic - I will now call him General Hadzihasanovic - was
1 actually doing his very best to get the situation under control.
2 Q. And in general throughout your tour in Bosnia, when General
3 Hadzihasanovic committed to something to you, did you have any reason to
4 believe that he would not honour his word?
5 A. The only time he would not be able to honour his word is if people
6 wouldn't actually obey him. But in those circumstances, he would make
7 strenuous efforts to try and make sure that his word was kept by perhaps
8 dispatching Dzemal Merdan down to the local area, or some other staff
10 Q. Now, Colonel, also in your diary for the 26th of January, towards
11 the middle of the page, there is a reference to a meeting to negotiate a
12 cease-fire, which is chaired by Roddy Cordy-Simpson and attended by
13 Mr. Merdan and Blaskic.
14 A. Uh-huh.
15 Q. Do you recall this meeting?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I would ask that you turn to tab 16, which is Exhibit P133, and by
18 looking at this document, whether it accurately reflects what happened
19 during the meeting.
20 A. It ties up with my diary.
21 Q. Did you believe what Blaskic said about people having been killed
22 for which he stopped the negotiations?
23 MR. WAESPI: Mr. President.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.
25 MR. WAESPI: I have been very generous in not objecting a couple
1 of times, leading or asking the Colonel to comment on documents which, you
2 know, it has not been established that he saw it and so on, but here just
3 for the sake of clarity, before he answers, that it be established whether
4 he was at this meeting, because according to the document it didn't say
5 so. So before these general comments are made about whether Blaskic says
6 something or whether you believe that it was true, that the proper
7 foundation be established.
8 Thank you, Mr. President.
9 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
10 Q. [In English] Colonel, did you attend this meeting which I -- which
11 you acknowledge as being recorded in your diary for the 26th of January?
12 A. Yes, I did attend it. I went down in a Warrior to Kiseljak.
13 Q. Do you recall what happened at the meeting and whether it was
14 successful in reaching a cease-fire agreement?
15 A. I think it was not successful in reaching a cease-fire agreement
16 for the reason that Blaskic said seven people had been killed.
17 Q. And when Blaskic said that seven people had been killed being the
18 reason to stop the meeting, did you believe him?
19 A. Well, I didn't know, to be honest. I don't -- you know, how did I
20 know whether seven people had been killed or, indeed, how many people had
21 been killed. But that was the reason used for the meeting to be stopped.
22 Q. Do you recall what was Roddy Cordy-Simpson's attitude towards
23 stopping the meeting?
24 A. Well, he wanted it to continue and get a cease-fire regardless of
25 this report.
1 Q. And what was the conclusion at the end of the meeting?
2 A. I think that we were to meet again tomorrow.
3 Q. And this document at tab 16, document P133, does it reflect what
4 happened at the meeting?
5 A. Yes, it does, because General Cordy-Simpson was persistent in
6 trying to get the negotiations regardless of the reports of seven people
7 killed, and he insisted on another meeting the next day.
8 Q. Now, Colonel, in your diary it is reported that that day getting
9 back was a performance and that it was difficult for you to accompany
10 Dzemal Merdan back to Zenica. My question to you is: During this trip to
11 Zenica, did you speak to Dzemal Merdan about the allegations made by
12 Blaskic at the meeting and, if so, did Dzemal Merdan mention anything to
14 A. It's not in my diary, Your Honour. It's highly likely I would
15 have mentioned it, but I can't with truth say I did, and that is the best
16 of my recollection. I would normally mention it, but I can't -- I haven't
17 got a record that I did.
18 Q. And do you recall anything that Dzemal Merdan would have said at
19 that occasion?
20 A. Well, his normal reaction was to promise to investigate it, and I
21 believed him.
22 Q. Now, moving down to your -- again on the 27th of January in your
23 diary, there is a mention of a second meeting taking place on the 27th of
24 January. Do you recall this meeting?
25 A. Yes, I do.
1 Q. Do you recall what happened at that meeting?
2 A. We reached a cease-fire agreement and Blaskic seemed to have
3 changed his mind on the sticking point, which was the seven people being
5 Q. And do you recall what, if anything, Merdan said at that meeting?
6 A. No, I don't. I mean, I have to say it's very difficult for me to
7 remember the detail, Your Honour, at this time. Even getting there we
8 were attacked several times each day. God knows by who.
9 Q. Now, Colonel, I'd like to refer you to tab 17, which is document
10 DH0664. My first question, and this is something I may have missed at the
11 beginning, can you tell the Trial Chamber who Roddy Cordy-Simpson is.
12 A. At the time Brigadier Roddy Cordy-Simpson was the chief of staff
13 to General Morillon, General Morillon being the French UN commander for
14 Bosnia, and General Roddy Cordy-Simpson being a British officer attached
15 under command of General Morillon.
16 Q. Now, Colonel, this is the minutes of the meeting of the 27th of
17 January. Did you attend this meeting? Is this the meeting that is
18 referred to at the bottom of the page dealing with 27 January in your
20 A. Yes, it is.
21 Q. Can you take a look at this document and see whether it refreshes
22 your memory as to what may have been said by the parties during the
24 A. I think that at this meeting, Dzemal Merdan made a report that he
25 thought seven HVO soldiers had been killed and that it wasn't on a
1 cease-fire negotiation as such -- it wasn't a hand-over of prisoners,
2 rather, it was actually fighting, a skirmish, and he made that report and
3 accepted that actually seven were killed. I think that is what has
4 happened, and I seem to recall it although I can't read this stuff at the
5 bottom of the page.
6 Q. Now, Colonel, if I refer your attention to the next page of this
7 document, and more specifically to paragraphs 8 and 9, paragraph 8 says
8 that all parties signed the agreement, which is to be found at Annex A,
9 and after the signing of the agreement, the three parties involved
10 informed the press about the achievements. Do you recall this being the
11 result of the meeting?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And at paragraph 9, it says that, "During the break, the
14 negotiations were put at risk by the HVO allegation of the burning and
15 shelling of Busovaca from Fojnica. Quick verification of the rumours with
16 the UN forces in those villages proved that they were totally unfounded.
17 The HVO agreed on continuing the negotiations."
18 Do you recall if this happened and how it happened during the
19 break at the meeting?
20 A. Well, it was my operational area, Your Honour, and I got on the
21 radio and spoke to my operations room, and I said I want a report as to
22 anyone in that area, has this happened? The answer came back no, it
23 hasn't. So I reported back immediately to the meeting that, in my view,
24 nothing had happened, and then it continued again.
25 Q. Now, this allegation by the HVO, was it the same as the seven
1 people in Dusina or a different one?
2 A. No. This is a different matter.
3 Q. And in your diary at the bottom of page -- of the day for the 27th
4 of September --
5 A. January.
6 Q. January, sorry. That's the second time I do this, if not more.
7 That there was a performance over an alleged atrocity committed by the
8 Bosnian Muslims, or the ABiH. Do you recall what this in your diary
9 refers to?
10 A. When I use the word "performance," I mean a story, a something to
11 make a problem, something like that. To be quite honest, I don't know
12 whether this "performance" refers to the killing of seven HVO soldiers or
13 the performance of burning and attacking Busovaca, but it will be one of
14 those two.
15 Q. Now, at the paragraph 11 on the next page of this document, it
16 talks about the setting up of the joint commission.
17 A. Uh-huh.
18 Q. Do you recall whose idea it was to set up the joint commission and
19 how it took place?
20 A. You know, I don't know whose idea it was. It might have been
21 mine, but it was a good idea, but it might have been someone else too.
22 The commission was essentially to travel around to try and get to the
23 bottom of what had happened at various incidents, to try and take away the
24 irritations that would cause the HVO and the BiH to come into conflict.
25 Q. Now, Colonel, in this paragraph 11, it says that the commission is
1 to be set up as of the 28th of January, that they are to travel around to
2 where there were allegations of problems, and that they are to report at
3 the meeting on 30 January. Do you recall this being what was said about
4 the joint commission on that day?
5 A. I recall everything except the date in my brain, but the date I
6 can't confirm that we agreed the 30th of January. But that was exactly
7 the way we wanted it. We wanted it set up fast, we wanted to operate with
8 sufficient authority from the top, and we wanted -- to be quite honest, I
9 didn't really want to be involved in it because I just didn't have any
10 more officers left, so I really wanted the ECM, the European Community
11 Monitoring Mission to do this task, and to that end I gave them some
12 vehicles, but I just did not want any more of my officers used on this
13 sort of task. We were stretched enough as it was.
14 Q. And do you remember that they were supposed to report to you on
15 the 30th of January after having visited the locations where there were
16 alleged violations?
17 A. Yes, absolute -- well, you say the 30th of January. I now see
18 it's the 30th of January, so I confirm that's the case, but I don't
19 remember the 30th of January. Everything else is accurate in my mind.
20 Q. Now, you mention the report made by Mr. Merdan with respect to
21 those seven people having been killed, and you said earlier that he
22 mentioned that people had been killed but during fighting and not during a
23 prisoner exchange. Did you believe what Mr. Merdan said at that time?
24 A. I did. I did, because the HVO had alleged it and Mr. Merdan had
25 confirmed it. So why should I not believe that if both sides are in
2 Q. There seemed to be a difference with the fact that the HVO is
3 saying that a crime was committed and Mr. Merdan is saying that no crime
4 was committed.
5 A. Well --
6 Q. What was your position?
7 A. My position was that I was most crucially concerned about
8 civilians dying. These were soldiers, and apparently there was a
9 firefight between two sides who customarily shot at one another, and that
10 was well known. So I had no more time for this matter. It had been
11 investigated to the best of the ability of both sides, and I actually had
12 had more pressing matters to deal with than actually going further into
13 this matter. But the European Community Monitoring Mission, this
14 commission would go there. After all, Mr. Merdan was part of it and if
15 General Hadzihasanovic was prepared to allow his deputy to be used at a
16 time when all sides were stretched and totally without sleep, I thought
17 that was putting it pretty high, frankly. So I was satisfied by this.
18 And Blaskic appointed his second in command, too, at a time when they
19 could have been getting so little sleep it's almost impossible to think
20 they were awake during the day.
21 Q. Now, the meeting about the 30th of January, do you recall this
22 meeting? You may not recall, of course, the date 30 January, but this is
23 the meeting you actually chaired. Do you recall this meeting, looking at
24 your notes?
25 A. Yes, I do.
1 Q. Do you recall how this meeting was conducted?
2 A. Yes. Well, I chaired it, Your Honour, and I asked Mr. Jeremy
3 Fleming of the European Community Monitoring Mission, who was leading the
4 commission, to make a report.
5 Q. Was this the report that you -- that he had been asked to prepare
6 at the meeting of the 27th?
7 A. Yes, it was.
8 Q. I ask you to turn to tab 18, which is document P922. You probably
9 saw this document at the break. I would ask you to look at the report
10 made by Mr. Fleming on page 2. And more specifically, the fact that they
11 had -- the third paragraph from the bottom, where it says: "We visited
12 the town of Busovaca."
13 A. Yes, I see.
14 Q. To your knowledge, did Mr. Fleming and his commission visit Dusina
15 and report on what they had seen in Dusina?
16 A. I think Dusina was visited by one of my patrols, possibly with
17 Mr. Fleming. I think that was the case.
18 Q. And when this report was given, did you have any doubts as to the
19 fact that those seven people had actually been killed by a crime and not
20 during fighting?
21 A. Well, I think it was criminal for anyone to fight in Central
22 Bosnia, to be honest. So it was certainly a crime that these people had
23 been killed. Whether it was a crime that we could do anything about was
24 another matter. As the bodies apparently were picked, and I think by
25 Sergeant Kujawinski of my battle group, I think there was no doubt that
1 seven were killed.
2 Q. But these are -- who is -- Sergeant Kujawinski?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Can you tell us who he is?
5 A. He was one of the -- he was one of the platoon sergeants of my
6 battle group, and I think he went there.
7 Q. Can I refer you to your diary, Colonel, for the 30th of January.
8 And if you can just read quickly the part about the meeting.
9 A. I've read it.
10 Q. Now, is this the incident in which Sergeant Kujawinski was
11 involved or is this the incident in Dusina that we were talking a little
12 earlier about?
13 A. I'm confused. Forgive me. I'm not sure. I think Sergeant
14 Kujawinski might have been involved in Miletici early -- later on. So
15 forgive me, Your Honour. There are so many incidents, and I'm only an
16 infantry officer.
17 Q. Now, with respect to this incident in Dusina, those seven people,
18 Colonel, just to -- can you confirm what your belief was at the end of
19 that meeting on the 30th with respect to whether you were satisfied it had
20 been investigated and with the result of that investigation.
21 A. As I couldn't understand why seven people would be killed, I
22 thought it was probably the work of Mujahedin. There would be no reason
23 whatsoever for this sort of -- I just did -- I didn't have time to
24 investigate it, but I probably thought the BiH -- seven people killed?
25 You know, that's -- that's almost a deliberate attack. You know, one or
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 two people killed in a firefight, yes. Seven people, that looks to start
2 like being a massacre.
3 Q. Now, if I may bring you back, Colonel, just to the account of
4 Mr. Merdan, because you mentioned that you were satisfied with
5 Mr. Merdan's account. So I just want to make sure that we're not
6 confusing different incidents.
7 A. I'm quite sure that I could be confusing different incidents.
8 There are so many incidents. Forgive me, Your Honour. I think you might
9 find that Mr. Merdan's account was accepted by me, and I might be
10 referring to another incident that followed a few days later.
11 MR. WAESPI: Yes. The only point: What's sometimes troubling,
12 first of all, when he refers to his diary, if he could perhaps read out
13 these parts - I know my learned colleague wants to save time - so it's
14 reflected, you know, at what time he refreshed his memory, because we do
15 have the diary, and I have absolutely no objections if it's introduced
16 into -- as evidence.
17 And I also believe he already testified at what Merdan told him
18 and whether he appreciated what he told him and it's now rehashing. So I
19 don't think that's helpful, Mr. President.
20 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
21 Q. [In English] Colonel, let's go on to this meeting of the 30th
22 having been done and this agreement reached. Do you recall another
23 meeting which took place on the 1st of February?
24 A. With General Morillon?
25 Q. Yes. And if you can look at your diary and maybe read the
1 paragraph that you have in your diary about this meeting, if you do not
2 remember, or if you could just tell us what the meeting was about.
3 A. I -- I have the greatest of respect for General Morillon, and I
4 was being quite rude about the general in the paragraph I wrote, and I --
5 I can repeat it, but I don't see any point in doing so. This was a short
6 meeting to establish a cease-fire.
7 Q. And what was the purpose of this meeting on the 1st of February,
8 and who attended the meeting, to your recollection?
9 A. Blaskic, Hadzihasanovic, General Morillon, and myself. And also
10 my successor was present, Alistair Duncan.
11 Q. Now, Colonel, I refer you now to a -- if you can look at tab 21,
12 which is Exhibit P137, and see whether this document allows you to know
13 who the people were at this meeting.
14 A. Yes. This is the same meeting. Forgive me. My diary didn't have
15 the full list.
16 It fundamentally is a confirmation meeting to try and ensure the
17 cease-fire between the HVO and the ABiH continued and that we had access
18 to all -- down all routes and that the commission continued its work to
19 try and stop problems when they arose.
20 Q. Thank you, Colonel. Now, you mentioned that normally Mr. Merdan's
21 react when you made any allegations to him, can you recall what was
22 Mr. Merdan's normal reaction?
23 A. Well, sometimes he knew of the allegation already, but his normal
24 reaction was to do all he could to investigate it. He promised that, and
25 I believed him. And I would also say, you know, to bring -- investigate
1 and to bring people who have done wrong to justice, if possible.
2 Q. Was that ever an undertaking that was given to you by General
4 A. I can't recall a date, but certainly that was my belief in my
5 meetings with General Hadzihasanovic.
6 Q. I ask you, Colonel, to turn to tab 24, which is Exhibit P138. You
7 may have looked at this order during the break. Can you quickly glance
8 through it and explain what this order is issued by General Hadzihasanovic
9 to all brigades on the 3rd of February.
10 A. This is a reminder overall of the responsibilities of commanders
11 to abide by the rules of law. This is a direct order from the commander
12 to all units in the 3rd Corps that matters such as looting, burnings,
13 imprisoning of civilians was unacceptable and was not to happen and that
14 commanders who did such a thing would be held responsible.
15 Q. And is that a normal course of action or what you would expect
16 from the parties in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
17 A. To be honest, it was a necessary course of action in the case of
18 General Hadzihasanovic whose -- many of his officers probably had only
19 heard of Geneva in terms of it being a city in Switzerland, because they
20 were not military commanders. I think it's a good thing that he sent this
21 order out, and I applaud that it happened.
22 Q. And if I refer you to the third paragraph of this order, which
23 reads as follows: "Instruct legal organs in units to register such events
24 and deal with them urgently in accordance with the regulations and the
25 law." Is that a proper course of action for General Hadzihasanovic to
2 A. Absolutely, yes, and shows the quality of the man.
3 Q. And if I refer you to paragraph 6 of this document, basically
4 saying to "hold the commanders of brigades, independent units and
5 municipal defence staff responsible for carrying out this order." What
6 does it mean by "to hold commanders responsible"?
7 A. Well, if the rule of law, the rules of war had been disobeyed,
8 that the commanders of units that took part in such actions would be held
9 responsible. It is the absolute duty of a commander to take
10 responsibility for the actions of those subordinates underneath him. It
11 doesn't mean he's at fault necessarily or to blame for them, but he should
12 take responsibility in some of the blame.
13 Q. Now, looking at this order, Colonel, would you say that you are
14 surprised by this order or that it just corresponds with your belief of
15 what was happening within the 3rd Corps?
16 A. Well, it corresponds with my belief with what was happening within
17 the 3rd Corps, and I'm not surprised but delighted to see it in writing.
18 Q. Now, Colonel, if I would show you a document which states that
19 more than 1.000 soldiers from the 3rd Corps have been the object of
20 criminal reports filed by the 3rd Corps and its subordinate units, how
21 would you react to this hypothesis?
22 A. Then I would be surprised.
23 MR. WAESPI: In all -- in all fairness, that's impossible for him
24 to answer. He needs to know for what crimes these people were persecuted.
25 I think that's a general question which is impossible, unfair to answer.
1 MR. BOURGON:
2 Q. I can make my question more precise and I would most likely show
3 you a document later on, but simply this document over 1.000 soldiers
4 being the object of criminal reports for all kinds of criminal offences
5 from stealing to looting to burning to murder and to offences against a
6 person. You just mentioned that you would be surprised. Why would that
8 A. Because there was so much going on. I was surprised at the number
9 of soldiers. That would probably be one-quarter of the corps, whatever
10 the corps strength was, maybe 4.000, 5.000. That's a lot. But it does
11 show that there was some kind of control over the soldiers and some kind
12 of responsibility being expected by commanders.
13 Q. And what does that tell you about General Hadzihasanovic's
14 attitude towards making reports?
15 A. Well, General Hadzihasanovic is actually someone who is quite
16 precise, and he is a -- he was a commander under real pressure, and I
17 think that he -- if he could, he would put it in writing so that people
18 were under no illusion as to what was expected of them, if he could.
19 Mindful of the fact that he probably didn't have much time.
20 Q. Now, Colonel, I'd like to move on to the events of April 1993.
21 And those events are discussed into your diary, and more specifically I'd
22 like to refer where you speak on the 15th of April about the kidnapping of
23 the HVO Brigade Commander Totic. Do you recall this incident, and what
24 can you tell the Trial Chamber about this incident?
25 A. I was in Travnik in the middle of the afternoon, on foot, walking
1 down to the town, and I received a radio message that a brigade commander
2 of the HVO had been taken -- had been captured, had been taken as a
3 hostage or something in Zenica. So I went straight back to my
4 headquarters that was some five, six miles to the east, at Vitez, and then
5 I received a message from Ambassador Thebault of the European Community
6 Monitoring Mission saying, "I need you to come to Zenica immediately to
7 join a meeting I'm having because we need your presence."
8 Q. And do you recall what -- who attended this meeting?
9 A. Well, certainly Ambassador Thebault was there. Dzemal Merdan was
10 there, the chief of police was there. I think the mayor was there, mayor
11 of Zenica. But I arrived late and the meeting was already taking --
12 already started. And I think it was in the Internacional Hotel.
13 Q. Do you recall anything special that happened during this meeting
14 or any specific contributions that you made during the meeting?
15 A. Yes. I demanded that Dzemal Merdan sort this matter out
16 immediately, that the BiH, who I made probably the incorrect assumption,
17 had some kind of control over this situation, get Totic back. There were
18 already, I think, two or three men dead as a result of this kidnapping,
19 and I remember saying to Merdan that it wasn't good enough for the police
20 -- for it to be a police investigation. We all had to get this sorted
21 out quickly because I was fully aware from my intelligence that the whole
22 of Central Bosnia was just about to blow like a volcano, with people in
23 position to do great damage to civilians.
24 Q. What was Dzemal Merdan's response to you when you asked him to
25 take the situation under control?
1 A. He said it was -- I think he said it was extremely difficult, and
2 he implied that they had no contact with these people, something like
3 that. And I said, well, he had to have contact with them.
4 Q. And what did he respond?
5 A. I don't know.
6 Q. Now, do you recall what happened the next day, on the 16th of
8 A. Of course I remember what happened on the 16th of April. The 16th
9 April was a disaster. On that day, huge numbers of people were killed in
10 the Lasva Valley by an attack centred around the village of Ahmici but
11 also extending down the valley to Busovaca and into Vitez. It was a
13 Q. And do you recall what you personally did on that day? And if you
14 want to take a look at your diary, do so in terms of what actions you took
15 that day.
16 A. I don't need the diary. I was in the wrong end. I was in the
17 wrong position. I was in Zenica when I was woken up at 0500 by a message
18 from my second in command saying that the whole of Central Bosnia was --
19 actually seemed to have been blowing up, and I immediately said I'd come
20 back, but I was in the wrong -- I was trapped on the other side of the
21 lines. Anyway, he suggested I wait until it was daylight, and the BiH
22 roadblocks in Zenica were most unwilling to let me cross the mountain
23 road, which is the back road. I insisted on it. And they, with
24 reluctance, opened the barricade. I went through one, two, three
25 roadblocks. Two of them were with mines, and I moved the mines.
1 Anyway, suffice to say after about three-quarters of an hour on
2 the road, I rejoined my battalion through an HVO roadblock at the bottom
3 of the mountain road and the Lasva Valley. I then went straight into town
4 to try -- I got in my Land Rover, and I went straight into town, to Vitez,
5 to try and find Blaskic. And then I drove back into Zenica to try and
6 find out what had happened with regard to the Totic matter. And I spent
7 most of the day shuttling around.
8 Q. What was your aim in going to Vitez and in that area?
9 A. I wanted to just try and speak with the commander of the HVO to
10 try and stop what was clearly happening. I had seen a lot of bodies on
11 the mountain as I'd come over the top. I was on my own. And I wanted to
12 try and stop -- try and stop the fighting from the point of view of the
14 The catalyst for this fighting could well have been the taking of
15 Totic, and that was something I warned Merdan the day before and of course
16 he knew that. And this is what happened.
17 Now, whether in fact the taking of Totic was the catalyst for
18 action or the spur for action or the reason, I'm not sure. All I know is
19 that the forces were in position for offensive action by the HVO by the
20 evening of the 15th of April.
21 Q. Now, you commented in many trials about Ahmici, and my purpose was
22 not to come back on this incident, but you did say in previous trials that
23 this was a well-planned and coordinated attack.
24 A. I confirm that.
25 Q. Now, I'd like to go to the 16th of April when you returned to
1 Zenica. Did you attend any meetings that you recall, returning to Zenica
2 on the 16th of April?
3 A. Yes. I attended with Ambassador Thebault a meeting to try and
4 find out where Totic was.
5 Q. And do you recall if Dzemal Merdan was attending that meeting?
6 A. The answer is I don't recall in my brain, I can't see it in my
7 diary, but undoubtedly he would have been there.
8 Q. And do you recall having a conversation with him concerning the --
9 the alleged people who would have done this kidnapping of Totic?
10 A. I mean, it would be entirely the thrust of any conversation I had
11 with Ambassador Thebault, with the mayor of Zenica, with the chief of
12 police, and with Merdan. I'm quite sure I did, I was absolutely demanding
13 that we must actually get Totic back.
14 Q. And what was Mr. Merdan's response with respect to the people who
15 allegedly did the kidnapping of Totic?
16 A. He didn't give me a satisfactory response because he just looked
17 like he couldn't get an answer.
18 Q. And what was your reaction?
19 A. Well, I was angry, actually. I was angry because people were
20 dying all over the place, and I just thought this was quite absurd, that
21 why -- and the question was in my brain: Why would anyone do this in the
22 position they're in? And of course I wasn't connecting too well at the
23 time, but of course I understand it could well have been these Mujahedin
25 Q. Now, just one -- before we go back to this idea of Mujahedin, did
1 you succeed in getting a cease-fire on the 16th of April? Did you ever
2 have a meeting to achieve a cease-fire on the 16th of April?
3 A. I cannot recall. I definitely positioned my armour to try and
4 keep the two sides apart. For example, I put them on the main road
5 overnight, which was very dangerous, actually, because they were being
6 attacked by both sides. But on the road down the Lasva Valley, I can't
7 remember -- my diary doesn't say. We did have a meeting in Zenica. Then
8 I took -- the next day I think I took the European Community Monitoring
9 Mission and the ICRC to Vitez.
10 Q. Now, if I refer you to the 16th of April when you are back in
11 Vitez, was there a meeting to negotiate a cease-fire in Vitez?
12 A. Highly likely and done by someone else.
13 Q. Now, can you --
14 A. By my second in command.
15 Q. Can you take a look, Colonel, at tab 26. Can you tell us what
16 this document is issued by commander of the Central Bosnia Operative Zone
17 on the cessation of combat operations?
18 A. This is a cease-fire document which there was an UNPROFOR
19 representative, probably my second in command, but I could be inaccurate
20 here. The 16th was a day of extreme busyness for me. I don't think I
21 attended -- and you've got here -- you have also got Cerkez here at the
22 meeting, and that would mean it would be in Vitez, and I spent most of my
23 time on the road in Zenica.
24 Q. Now, can you look at page 3 of this document and tell us what you
25 see in this document.
1 A. God, this is a rescinding order. So at 1600 hours, the first
2 document, you have Blaskic ordering an immediate cease-fire, but at 1500,
3 an hour before -- there's something going wrong here. At 1500 hours, an
4 hour before, Blaskic says, "Don't carry out that cease-fire."
5 Q. And what is he instructing his troops to do about the order and
6 about future instructions?
7 A. He is to keep -- he is to keep the first one handy, keep it handy.
8 That's an English term. I don't know. It's strange. Keep it handy and
9 use the first one if the United Nations Protection Force come near you."
10 Q. How do you react to such a document being issued by the commander
11 of the central Operative Zone of the HVO?
12 A. That's a lie. That's a deceit. That's -- so in other words what
13 effectively -- but there's a problem here because there's a 1500 time on
14 one and 1600 on the other. They should be the reverse way round.
15 Q. Colonel, I'd like to move on now to the 24th of April, 1993. If
16 you can look in your diary for this date and tell us whether you had any
17 meetings that day or what you were doing on the 24th of April.
18 A. Well, I started by going into see Santic and Pero Skopljak, who
19 were HVO officers in the PTT building of Vitez. I informed them that I
20 considered it to be an utter and complete disgrace that Ahmici had
21 occurred, that it was a total slur on the Bosnian Croats, that it was a
22 disaster for Bosnian Croat politics, it should be investigated as soon as
23 possible, it should be fully investigated with Bosnian Muslim
24 representatives on the commission.
25 Then I went to see Blaskic in Hotel Vitez. I pointed out that it
1 was in his Operational Zone of responsibility, which he agreed, and told
2 him he had to do something extremely positively about this, and I told him
3 that I had already contacted the Security Council of the United Nations
4 direct and asked them to come and visit.
5 Q. Do you recall if on the 24th of April the Security Council was
6 actually in Central Bosnia?
7 A. I don't know whether they were in Central Bosnia. I know that I
8 sent a message to the permanent representatives for the Security Council
9 who I believed were to visit Sarajevo and asked them to come and visit my
10 headquarters as well.
11 Q. And did they?
12 A. They did.
13 Q. And when was that and how did this take place?
14 A. I don't know exactly but it was in the next few days, I suppose.
15 Q. And do you recall visiting any specific sites with the members of
16 the Security Council?
17 A. I did. I briefed them in my headquarters. There were -- the
18 president of the Security Council was the Venezuelan ambassador. I
19 briefed the Security Council permanent representatives in my headquarters
20 and I arranged transport to take them to see Ahmici, the massacre in
21 Ahmici. I warned them there were other massacres in Central Bosnia alone,
22 that this was not the only one, and I said that it was disgusting and I
23 asked them if there was anything we could do to set up an International
24 Criminal Court to try war criminals.
25 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Mr. President, apparently I have
1 exceeded the two hours planned. I would like to ask permission from the
2 Chamber to continue until I finish very shortly.
3 Q. [In English] We have another ten minutes to go. And did you know
4 that while you were involved with the Security Council another incident
5 took place in Miletici on 24th of April?
6 A. I understood later, yes.
7 Q. What do you know, if anything, about this incident on the 24th of
9 A. I think this is the incident I got confused about, Your Honour,
10 and I think this is an incident which we assessed to be carried out by the
11 Mujahedin unit that was in Central Bosnia.
12 Q. Now, Colonel, I'd like to refer you to tab 28, which is Exhibit
13 P149, which is a milinfosum number 177, dated the 25th of April. I would
14 refer you to page 4, which deals with the incident in Miletici. And more
15 specifically, midway through paragraph 1 where it is stated that, "People
16 in the area were keen to emphasise that the soldiers were extremist and
17 not regular BiH troops."
18 On that occasion and in the days following, did you have any
19 reason to believe that this assessment that was made at that time was that
20 Mujahedin had done this incident in Miletici?
21 A. Well, that's what we believed, and this is the incident
22 particularly that we felt was actually at the hands of -- of these
24 Q. Now, those Mujahedin, based on what you know from your time in
25 Central Bosnia, would you say that those Mujahedin were part of the army
1 of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
2 A. Most definitely not. They arrived in the area unbidden by the
3 ABiH commanders, they made a damn nuisance of themselves and caused
4 enormous problems, and they were not under command and control, to the
5 very best of my knowledge. And I speak about this having had a source who
6 I trust absolutely tell me a little about this group.
7 Q. And can you share the information you obtained from that source
8 with us?
9 A. I can. The information was that when the source met them on two
10 occasions, they were grouped 15 to 20. The source met them to the north
11 of Vitez once, to the east of Zenica on another occasion. The source said
12 that one was French-speaking, extremely well dressed, quoting, "Dressed as
13 a Parisian student. Very urbane, frighteningly cold." There were no BiH
14 anywhere near the location that the source met these people. Indeed, they
15 seemed to be operating in isolation and they were in both cases in
16 civilian houses and in civilian dress.
17 Q. Could you share with us, Colonel, the identity of your source?
18 A. No, I could not.
19 Q. Did you trust this source, Colonel?
20 A. Absolutely.
21 Q. And can you tell us when this conversation would have taken place?
22 A. Around about this time. I don't know exactly when, but I met the
24 Q. And if you try to picture this incident in terms of -- or this
25 conversation in where -- whether we say Ahmici is a reference point, is it
1 before or after Ahmici, or is it later in time? Do you recall when this
2 would have taken place?
3 A. On one or two occasions around the massacre of Ahmici, possibly
4 before or possibly after. Around this period. I did not commit this to
5 my diary.
6 Q. Now, going back quickly to the exchange of -- not the exchange,
7 sorry, but the kidnapping of Totic. Do you think the 3rd Corps would have
8 any advantage to gain from this event?
9 A. Quite the reverse. It was disaster that this event occurred.
10 There would be no logic in actually kidnapping Totic. Everyone knew that
11 the tension in Central Bosnia at the time was enormous. So whoever did it
12 may well have done it deliberately to cause the fighting to start
13 immediately, which of course it did.
14 Q. Were you yourself involved in the events that followed with
15 respect to what happened after this exchange?
16 A. The exchange -- forgive me, but I must ask what you mean by --
17 Q. Sorry, after the kidnapping. Sorry, my mistake. What happened
18 after the kidnapping? Do you know what happened, if Totic was ever found?
19 A. I know -- you see, I left Bosnia unknowing. I assumed -- I made
20 the assumption that Totic was dead. I couldn't see why -- I assumed it
21 was Mujahedin - I was pretty certain of that - had taken him. I couldn't
22 see why they would release him. So I was pretty certain that he was dead,
23 and only recently, and I mean in the last few years, have I discovered,
24 thank God, that he was exchanged.
25 Q. I've got two more questions to ask you, and the first one is:
1 Because we've been using some document called milinfosum which was
2 produced by BritBat, would you provide -- could you provide the Trial
3 Chamber with your assessment of the value of milinfosums.
4 A. Your Honour, I never wrote or, to the best of my knowledge, read a
5 milinfosum. Every day, if I was in Vitez, I would hold a conference at
6 5.00. This conference was never and never did last longer than 30
7 minutes. At this conference I would listen to the intelligence, I would
8 listen to the operational commanders underneath me, and I would make
10 The milinfosum was a system, a rather tedious system, for
11 reporting. I was concerned about what happened in the future, not
12 reporting back. So maybe I was a bad commander in that respect, but I had
13 a hell of a lot to do, and I felt my responsibility dictated that I spent
14 most of my time in the field, not at my headquarters.
15 So from my point of view, milinfosums were a good way of passing
16 on general information.
17 Now I've had a look at some of them, I'm somewhat perturbed by
18 some of the assumptions and bad intelligence - it wasn't intelligence
19 because it wasn't properly assessed - that actually went into those
20 milinfosums that went to UN headquarters.
21 Q. And my last question to you, Colonel, is looking back at -- or
22 first let me ask you: Did you have regular contacts with General
23 Hadzihasanovic during your time in Central Bosnia?
24 A. Yes, I did, frequently.
25 Q. And can you comment on General Hadzihasanovic as a person and as a
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
2 A. As a person, he was calm, decent, honourable, and a gentleman. I
3 liked being with him. We understood one another. As a commander, he was
4 a man under extreme pressure with very few resources to call upon. He
5 never ever was discourteous to me, and he was obviously, for most of the
6 time I saw him, totally worn out, fatigued. But even so, tired as he was,
7 he always treated me with utmost courtesy and never ever looked at his
8 watch, which I would have done in his place. He always promised he would
9 do his best to help. I have great respect and liking for the man.
10 Q. And my last question to you, Colonel: Looking back on your own
11 life, how would you qualify your time spent in Central Bosnia as part of
12 the significant events which took place in your life?
13 A. I don't know how to answer that. Central Bosnia, to me, was
14 probably -- do you say the high water mark of a military career? I knew I
15 could never ever see anything or be part of anything like that again. I'm
16 very, very concerned about what happens to Bosnia. I care very much about
17 what happens, all the people. So I guess it's probably the high water
18 mark of my military career.
19 Q. Thank you very much, Colonel.
20 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. I have
21 no further questions for this witness.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I am looking at Mr. Dixon now.
23 MR. DIXON: Your Honours, I only have one or two questions, so I
24 can do them before the break. Thank you, Your Honours.
25 Cross-examined by Mr. Dixon:
1 Q. Colonel Stewart, you have mentioned in your testimony today a
2 number of commanders of the Bosnian army and the HVO at a higher level, at
3 a corps level, that you dealt with during your time there, but you have
4 also mentioned some of the brigades that they commanded. For example, you
5 mentioned the 333rd Mountain Brigade.
6 For the sake of completeness, could I confirm with you that you
7 knew about a number of brigades in the 3rd Corps, including the 7th Muslim
8 Mountain Brigade, but that this was a brigade that you knew very little
9 about, and it was a brigade which was never brought to your attention for
10 any particular reason; is that right?
11 A. That's correct. There was only one brigade that I really
12 investigated, and that was a brigade way up to the north which was a
13 Bosnian Croat brigade, which was actually guarding a BiH position. But
14 even the 333 Mountain Brigade, I only mentioned it today because it was on
15 the document in front of me. To be quite honest, at my time, Your Honour,
16 I knew so little about what was happening, structure and things, I really
17 had to rely on personalities, and I would go to a personality rather than
18 a brigade.
19 So the answer to your question, Mr. Dixon, is I knew nothing
20 really about 7th Brigade.
21 Q. And as far as you can recall, no issue ever arose in relation to
22 the 7th Brigade during your time of duty there; is that right?
23 A. As per the 7th Brigade, no. No.
24 Q. Thank you, Colonel Stewart. I have no further questions for you.
25 MR. DIXON: Thank you, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It is half past 5.00. We're
2 going to have the break now, but before the break could the Prosecution
3 tell me, because we'll have only about one hour left after the break, in
4 rough terms will the Prosecution need more than one hour? As the Defence
5 has taken two hours and a quarter, and if the Prosecution needs more, the
6 witness will have to be called back tomorrow.
7 MR. WAESPI: Yes. Thank you, Mr. President. We need as much time
8 as the Defence has used. Perhaps I'll be a little bit shorter, but I
9 certainly need all of today.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. It is half past
11 five. We're going to have the second regular break, and we will resume
12 around five to six.
13 --- Recess taken at 5.31 p.m.
14 --- On resuming at 5.59 p.m.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed. I give
16 the floor to the Prosecution who will begin their cross-examination and
17 will probably continue on tomorrow.
18 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President.
19 Cross-examined by Mr. Waespi
20 Q. Good evening, Colonel.
21 A. Good evening, sir.
22 Q. I would just like to go, in the remaining hour, over a few of the
23 areas which you touched in your examination-in-chief. Let me first just
24 clarify that I believe you told us you testified twice; in the Blaskic
25 case, and that was on the 17th June, 1999, and in the Kordic and Cerkez
1 case --
2 A. I'm sorry. I believe I called it Santic. Forgive me.
3 Q. Yes. Kordic and Cerkez case, the 17th January 2000?
4 A. Uh-huh.
5 Q. And that was almost five years ago, so I take it your memory at
6 that time may have been slightly better than today, although I'm not
7 doubting that you're still capable of remembering the essential things.
8 A. Yeah. My memory gets worse each day I get older, but you're
10 Q. As everybody does. Now, the second point is your witness
11 statement. I think you gave a witness statement in 1995 already to a
12 gentleman called John E. Gerns from the Office of the Prosecutor. Do you
13 remember that?
14 A. No, I don't.
15 MR. WAESPI: Perhaps, Your Honours, if the witness statement could
16 be shown to him. I've got a few copies. I'm not sure whether we need it
17 but just to have the record clear. I have copies for everybody.
18 Unfortunately, unstapled because I thought we wouldn't need it, but ...
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] This document is being shown to
20 refresh the witness's memory?
21 MR. WAESPI: [Previous translation continues] ... might use it on
22 one or two points later if he doesn't recall.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Bourgon.
24 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. We have
25 received this statement on the part of the witness, and we see no problem
1 with my colleague using it to refresh the witness's memory if necessary,
2 but we don't see why this statement should be distributed to everyone. If
3 my colleague wishes to have it admitted, then we shall see, but this is a
4 matter of principle. The statement, as such, is simply a collection of
5 statements taken from the witness's diary. It's not the content. It is a
6 matter of principle.
7 If my colleague wishes to use it with the witness, no problem, but
8 we don't see why it should be distributed to everyone in the way it has
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please continue. The document
11 will certainly not be admitted.
12 Mr. Dixon.
13 MR. DIXON: Your Honour, just briefly to add to what Mr. Bourgon
14 has said, and that is -- and I believe Mr. Waespi is going to do that, he
15 should ask the witness the questions first and see if he does remember
16 before he starts taking him through a witness statement. It's only, in
17 our submission, if the witness cannot remember and he does think that he
18 could recall the information by looking at his statement that he should
19 then be taken to his statement. But if he can remember and give the
20 evidence firsthand, that is the best evidence for Your Honours to have.
21 Thank you, Your Honours.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. The Prosecution has
23 listened carefully to what has been said by the Defence, but I noted from
24 the beginning that the witness doesn't even remember having given that
25 statement. So this is an important point.
1 It's better to go forward with questions, and then if he doesn't
2 know the answer, then you can remind him that on such-and-such a day he
3 said so-and-so.
4 MR. WAESPI: [Previous translation continues] ... at this point I
5 don't intend yet to refresh his memory on that, but on the mere point
6 whether he indeed --
7 Q. Whether you indeed remember having given the witness statement in
8 July -- in June 1995. Do you remember that now, having seen the
10 A. I do. In Belgium.
11 Q. Thank you very much.
12 A. It was the "Gerns" that threw me. If it had been Dana who was
13 questioning me, I would have understood, but you said "Gerns," and I
14 couldn't remember his name.
15 Q. Yes. I had to see who was listed as the interviewer, and he was
16 an investigator at that time, Mr. John Gerns.
17 Your diary, just briefly to touch on that, you kept it, I
18 understand, between the 28th of August 1992 until the 10th of May 1993; is
19 that correct?
20 A. Yes. Just about. I didn't actually start on the 28th of August.
21 It was written retrospectively because the general told me to start
23 Q. And just to make that also clear, you told us you left on the 12th
24 of May, 1993.
25 A. It was either the 11th or the 12th.
1 Q. And your successor, who was that?
2 A. Alistair Duncan.
3 Q. And I believe you told us you met him. He was present at a
4 meeting already in February. Would that be possible?
5 A. Yes, it would, because he had two reconnaissances before he came
6 in person to take over.
7 Q. Thanks, Colonel. Now, let's go to substance and talk a little bit
8 about these milinfosums. Can you tell us to whom they were addressed?
9 A. They were -- normally went to headquarters Bosnia-Herzegovina
10 command, and they were sent nightly.
11 Q. And what was the purpose of these milinfosums?
12 A. To keep the higher command aware of what was happening in my
14 Q. So I take it it was important that the information contained was
15 as accurate as possible.
16 A. Yes, of course, but I've already accepted that sometimes it was
17 not as accurate as it should have been.
18 Q. Yes, but you can confirm that the people who drafted it - and
19 perhaps you can tell us that later - they did whatever they could at that
20 time to be as accurate as they could be?
21 A. Yes, but they were junior officers normally.
22 Q. Of what rank?
23 A. Well, it probably could even have been a sergeant major. It could
24 have been a lieutenant. At most it would have been a captain.
25 Q. And you said they would be given to higher command. How far up
1 would those go?
2 A. The responsibility is to go one level up. Then the higher command
3 writes its own.
4 Q. So they wouldn't have received the Ministry of Defence in London?
5 A. No.
6 Q. So if Mr. Watters, who testified here, would have suggested that,
7 that wouldn't be correct?
8 A. No. I don't know the answer. Bryan Watters was my second in
9 command. Normally they are sent only to the headquarters above who
10 determine what actually should be passed up to the headquarters beyond it.
11 But Bryan actually was in charge of the operations room when I was away
12 and he may well have had instructions to send it simultaneously up the
13 national chain of command.
14 Q. And I looked through some of them, and I think you also did
15 because you said you -- you had some comments to make about them. I saw a
16 couple of references like, I quote: "A normally reliable source," and
17 then says something, or at another instance it says, "Unconfirmed and
18 therefore not accurate." So that leads me to believe that indeed the --
19 your sergeants and up to the captain tried hard to make it as transparent
20 as possible what they were reporting.
21 A. Yes. And I accept responsibility. They were meant to be done
22 under my command and anything that happens under my command is my
23 responsibility. So if they're inaccurate, it's inaccuracies by me, not by
25 Q. You told us that you had every evening meetings in which you would
1 receive information and discuss it with your, I guess, staff and immediate
2 subordinates. What you discussed, would it be reflected generally in
3 those milinfosums?
4 A. Not necessarily. The purpose of the meeting every night was to --
5 for me to get an actual picture as to what's happening then and decide
6 exactly what we were going to do in the next 24 hours. And I didn't
7 actually have much time for milinfosums -- military information summaries
8 at that time. I only had half an hour.
9 Q. Let me go back to your staff. You told us already that Major
10 Watters, I believe he was your chief of staff and both your deputy?
11 A. Correct. From about the end of February onwards.
12 Q. And his predecessor was --
13 A. Tim Park.
14 Q. How do you compare them, if you can? I mean it's sort of tricky
15 to talk about an assessment of your subordinates, but can you tell us, you
16 know, how good they were in completing their professional jobs?
17 A. Tim was more of a -- was more operational, and Bryan was more
19 Q. And you --
20 A. Both were good officers.
21 Q. And you would rely on them?
22 A. I had no choice. I had to rely on them, and of course they were
23 my officers. Yes, of course.
24 Q. I think you also told us that in the beginning, you were more
25 concerned about the south of that area, Vakuf, Gornji, Donji Vakuf and
1 that your second in command was looking towards the north. I believe it
2 was an incident about Busovaca, and you said, you know, "My second in
3 command knew what was happening." Was that the allocation of duties you
4 had at that time?
5 A. It was de facto. The most urgent, pressing problem in my
6 operational area was at Gornji Vakuf, and therefore it occupied my almost
7 entire attention. But that didn't mean that the rest of the area could be
8 ignored. So fundamentally, when I was away the operations room and the
9 operations officer I had in that operations room, and Bryan Watters or Tim
10 Park, would deal with that problem. But if there was a requirement for me
11 to know about something, they would bring it to my attention, as they did.
12 Q. Who else was part of your immediate staff apart from your deputy
13 commander/chief of staff?
14 A. My adjutant, who was -- dealt with discipline and routine
15 administration; two operations officers, both captains, who maintained
16 permanently a presence in the operations room; and of course various
17 signalers and drivers who were with me.
18 Q. You mentioned the person, the adjutant who dealt with discipline.
19 Did you have problems with discipline in your unit?
20 A. None whatsoever. Discipline meant that when someone committed an
21 offence, something like losing an identity card, it was dealt with by him.
22 I don't think my unit was out of control. But a good question, sir.
23 Q. That's what I meant about out of control. How important is he in
24 your -- was he in your battalion?
25 A. To be honest, the adjutant is probably the commanding officer's
1 sounding board, the commanding officer's intimate staff officer, and he is
2 probably the person to whom the commanding officer might talk quietly for
4 Q. That's why he was also the person who dealt with these
5 disciplinary aspects of it?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Because you think that's very important to maintain that function.
8 A. Well, it's not just discipline he deals with, it's the running of
9 the unit; when people leave, when people come. It's the sort of detailed
10 management of a battalion.
11 Q. Let me ask you about a brief thing. It's almost incidental. You
12 told us you met a couple -- a number of times with Mr. Kordic and Dzemal
13 Merdan, whom you praised. Now, do you recall that sometimes in 1992, I
14 think it was in October, when you were in Novi Travnik Mr. Kordic called
15 Mr. Merdan using his mobile phone? Do you remember that happening?
16 A. Yes. I was amazed. Because the British military told me they
17 would not give me mobile phones because they wouldn't work. So once
18 again, the British army triumphs.
19 Q. And after there was even a fax exchange between Mr. Merdan and
20 Mr. Kordic.
21 A. Yes. In fact, I was part of the fax, I think.
22 Q. Let's move on to the forces that were operating in the theatre.
23 Now, you mentioned that you had a sort of a briefing, an introductory
24 briefing, and you mentioned Mr. Colm Doyle, the head of the European Union
25 mission to the BH.
1 Now, you remember that, and I quote him, and I believe I quote
2 your diary, what he told you, and I quote: "Most people in BiH are really
3 good at twisting the truth. All are quite prepared to attack their own
4 people and blame it on someone else." Do you remember that?
5 A. That's exactly what he said. I remember it because I wrote it
6 down in my diary, and it was said in Zagreb. And I think Colm Doyle was
7 the political assistant to Lord Owen or something like that. He was the
8 -- you see, at this time, Your Honours, I was trying to get as much
9 information as I could, and this was information that I hadn't got, so I
10 wrote it down. That's exactly what he said.
11 Q. Was it helpful for you in your further dealings?
12 A. Well, it gave me an idea of what was happening. And I just took
13 it as I knew nothing. I wrote it down and I considered it. I didn't know
14 any better. This was a source of information. The Ministry of Defence in
15 London hadn't given me such information.
16 Q. I believe he was Irish, Mr. Doyle.
17 A. Yes, he was.
18 Q. Let me ask you, how many times in your dealings with these warring
19 factions, their commanders, have you -- politicians, have you heard the
20 excuse elements allegedly perpetrating something were out of control?
21 A. Actually, no, not very many times. I'm now using my mind. I used
22 to say they were out of control. For example, when my driver, my escort
23 driver was killed, shot through the head on the 13th of January, it was in
24 my opinion done by soldier of the Bosnian BiH. A good shot, if that's not
25 too foul to say. But I believed it was the BiH soldier that did it. And
1 I also had incidents with the HVO. I don't believe that they were under
2 instructions from their chain of command to engage the United Nations. In
3 fact, I am pretty sure they weren't. And that includes the HVO. So I
4 used to put it down to lack of control, out of control soldiers, such as
5 on the 13th of January.
6 I don't think commanders necessarily would admit to me that their
7 forces were out of control. I would just think they might have been.
8 Q. I believe you mentioned Mr. Kordic in relation to Ahmici. Do you
9 remember - you might have talked about that - that after Ahmici occurred
10 you went to him and put to him what has happened in Ahmici in your view,
11 and do you remember that he told you it might have been the Serbs?
12 A. Yeah. That's what he said. He said that it was a long-range
13 patrol of the Bosnian Serb army that might have done the -- and I just
14 laughed. I said a very long-range patrol that went right past your
16 Q. So you didn't believe him.
17 A. No, of course I didn't.
18 Q. Was that in line with what Doyle had told you at the outset of
19 your mission?
20 A. Yes; Doyle's information was wrong. I mean, he was a political
21 officer in a political place picking up information from I don't know
22 where. But Doyle was doing the best he could, and he was giving us a
23 briefing after he'd ceased to be in that position, and that's fine. I
24 mean, a lot of briefings are wrong. And to say there were lots of
25 Mujahedin, I didn't see evidence of that. And one of the things I learnt
1 quickly in Bosnia was if we don't actually see it ourselves, don't trust
2 it. So that's one of the principles I tried to apply.
3 Q. But on this point, Mr. Kordic was wrong, or did you believe
4 Mr. Kordic?
5 A. On what?
6 Q. That the Serbs were responsible for Ahmici.
7 A. No. I repeat: He was totally wrong. He was not -- the Bosnian
8 Serb army was not responsible for Ahmici. That was done by units of the
9 HVO, special or otherwise. That's my absolute belief.
10 Q. And tell us again what Mr. Kordic's position was.
11 A. Very good point. That's exactly what most people around this
12 courtroom would like to know, to be honest. I never really ascertained
13 what Dario Kordic's position was. Was he in charge of Blaskic or was he
14 not? The International Criminal Tribunal probably ascertained that but I
15 wasn't good enough to read through all the transcripts.
16 Kordic seemed to be the political commander and Blaskic seemed to
17 be the military commander. Who was in charge of who was something of
18 quite big importance to us, but at the stage when - excuse me - when
19 Busovaca was -- had checkpoints at either end, Kordic was actually the
20 commander in the PTT building at that time.
21 Q. But it's fair to say that Kordic was one of the higher
22 personalities in the area?
23 A. Absolutely, yes.
24 Q. And he lied to you about who committed Ahmici?
25 A. Well, I believe he lied, yes, because the massacre of Ahmici, we
1 all know, was carried out not by the Bosnian Serb army.
2 Q. Now, let's turn briefly to Mr. Hadzihasanovic. Were there also
3 occasionally moments that he appeared to -- not to be quite truthful in
4 what he was saying to you? Do you remember any -- any incident?
5 A. I'm thinking. I don't think -- I don't think -- I don't think
6 there were. I mean -- you know, I would take complaints to General
7 Hadzihasanovic, and I would explain them, and he would say, "I will do my
8 best to sort them out.
9 Q. Now, do you know there might be incidents in your subordinates'
10 milinfosums which reflect that Hadzihasanovic wasn't speaking the truth or
11 was less than accurate?
12 A. It's quite possible.
13 Q. You were quite enthusiastic about Mr. Hadzihasanovic today. Do
14 you remember what you told about him in the Kordic trial?
15 A. That he was a bit more sly than Merdan; something like that?
16 Q. Let me read out to you what you said.
17 A. Okay.
18 MR. WAESPI: And, Your Honours, that is, as I mentioned before, a
19 quote from his testimony in the Kordic, Cerkez trial, 18 January 2000, on
20 pages 15521 and 22.
21 Q. I'll just read out what you were asked. I believe it was
22 Mr. Nice. He asked you: "The last point, Hadzihasanovic you mentioned as
23 one of those willing to cooperate, I think. Just in a word or phrase,
24 he's a reliable, unreliable, honourable, dishonourable, whatever it is
25 man, Hadzihasanovic." And your answer: "I don't know. The one person I
1 trusted was Merdan, in the same way as I trusted Blaskic." Question: "So
2 you can't comment on Hadzihasanovic." Answer: "Well, I don't know. I
3 mean, saw a lot of him. He seemed to be okay but I didn't feel
4 particularly sympatico with him."
5 Do you remember having said that?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Do you stand by that today?
8 A. Well, I've given a lot of thought since then about Hadzihasanovic,
9 of course, because this is a trial. And yes, I said that, and yes I've
10 thought it through a great deal since then, and actually, I have a
11 slightly different view. I've tried to find out where I could actually
12 justify any kind of sneakiness by Hadzihasanovic. I've been through my
13 diaries, I've looked, and I haven't seen anything. So this is very
14 important for me to get this sorted out, and that's my answer.
15 Q. What in fact triggered your review of your opinion about
16 Mr. Hadzihasanovic?
17 A. When I discovered that he was being brought to trial, which I
18 think is a disgrace.
19 Q. And why do you think it's a disgrace?
20 A. Because he had -- if the charge is that he was in control of
21 Mujahedin units, he wasn't, and it's unfair to have that charge brought
22 against him.
23 Q. Yes, and I believe you told us about the information, and we'll
24 come to that in a moment.
25 Control over roads. I believe my colleague Residovic once asked a
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 witness that who controls the roads in Bosnia controls Bosnia. Would you
2 agree with her assessment?
3 A. Up to a point, yes. But we didn't necessarily control roads. We
4 controlled areas.
5 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. I have
6 no objection to my colleague citing what the witness may have said, but to
7 have an opinion, I don't think this should be submitted to the witness in
8 the form of a question.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It was not the opinion of the
10 attorney but the opinion of the witness who said that those who controlled
11 the roads controlled Bosnia and Herzegovina. I remember very well what
12 the witness said in answer to a question, a leading question one might
13 say. But perhaps you should quote the page when the witness gave this
14 answer to see whether this was an answer to a leading question on the part
15 of the Defence.
16 MR. WAESPI: I'm quite sure, Mr. President, that it was one of
17 these leading questions by Ms. Residovic perhaps justified in the moment.
18 I will try to find it overnight, and I can tell you exactly where it comes
19 from tomorrow. I won't go into that subject right now, then.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Please continue.
21 MR. WAESPI: Thank you, Mr. President.
22 Q. Let's go to this sensitive subject of control over the Mujahedin.
23 Let's start again with your diary, and let's have a look at the entry of
24 the 21st -- the 25th September. I believe it's the same day you had that
25 conversation with Mr. Doyle, and it may have been the same event in
2 MR. WAESPI: And, Your Honour, that's a new document, although the
3 Defence has relied on it. The witness obviously talked about his diary.
4 It doesn't need to be an exhibit. I just would like to ask him to read
5 out what concerned that specific mentioning of the forces that operated in
6 that area.
7 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] We have no objection,
8 Mr. President, for the witness to use his diary which he wrote himself to
9 answer the question. If the Prosecution wishes to tender the diary, then
10 the position may be different, but otherwise we have no objection that he
11 consult his diary.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Then the Prosecution
13 may use this diary as they see fit, quoting the whole paragraph that he
14 may have written or asking him to read it out himself, whichever you
15 prefer. But find the most efficient solution and which will save time.
16 As you know, time is very precious.
17 MR. WAESPI: Thank you very much, Mr. President.
18 Q. Since you're the native English speaker, perhaps you could tell
19 us, on the page where you discuss this introduction meeting of some
20 Friday, 25th of September, I believe a Major Jonathan Reely or Reilly, Ops
21 Officer European Community Monitoring Mission, talks about the different
22 forces that operate in the area, and perhaps you can read out what he says
23 just after his name about the different warring factions.
24 A. Of course. "Major Jonathan Reilly, of the Royal West Fusiliers,
25 the Ops Officer of the European Community Monitoring Mission, started: It
1 seems that the Bosnian Serbs, the TDF, have about 70.000 troops deployed
2 in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The land link between Serbia proper and their
3 forces in the west of BiH is of the greatest strategic importance. The
4 Croatian Defence Council, the HVO, is weaker with about 45 to 50.000
5 troops. The HVO are trying to close this strategic corridor. Finally,
6 the Bosnian territorial defence force, TDF, consists of about 50.000 South
7 Slav Muslims which are now being reinforced by Mujahedin from Islamic
8 fundamentalist countries."
9 Q. So that's what you were told at that time.
10 A. That's what I was told at the time.
11 Q. Did you have any doubt to mistrust this piece of information?
12 A. None whatsoever, as I knew nothing. That's why I wrote it down.
13 Q. Now, let's move on to the time when you actually got operational
14 in Bosnia. And in your various contacts with units and commanders,
15 perhaps Mujahedin. Have you ever had contacts with Mujahedin yourself?
16 A. I've seen them. I've got close to them. I've gone through sort
17 of a roadblock controlled by them. Did I have contacts with them? Apart
18 from indicating "Get out of the way," no.
19 Q. Can you tell us the location of that roadblock or those roadblocks
20 where you might have encountered them?
21 A. I particularly remember at the top of the mountain road to Zenica
22 from Dubravica.
23 Q. So between Dubravica and Zenica.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. In the middle, basically?
1 A. At the top.
2 Q. Yes. I might try to give you a map tomorrow so you can tell us.
3 Can you tell us what happened at that roadblock or checkpoint.
4 A. Well, it wasn't so much of a roadblock, it was just a group of
5 them on the road, and they were trying to sort of -- it was a sort of
6 standoff, really, and I wanted to go through and they were blocking, and
7 eventually I said, "Get out of the way," and they went.
8 Q. How did they look like? What were they wearing, if you recall?
9 A. Most of them were wearing civilian clothes. But they were armed.
10 And they didn't look like Bosnians. And that was really the closest I
11 came to the Mujahedin groups.
12 Q. Did you talk to them?
13 A. No. I couldn't, really. I was on my own.
14 Q. Yes. Have you ever heard that Iranian instructors were training
15 the Bosnian forces, Bosnian forces under the command and control of
16 Mr. Hadzihasanovic? Have you ever heard about that?
17 A. To the best of my knowledge, no, although my source suggested that
18 some of them were Iranian.
19 MR. WAESPI: Perhaps that would be a good moment to give Your
20 Honours the list of proposed exhibits or documents I would like to discuss
21 with this witness. And if the witness could be provided with just one tab
22 out of the documents, and that would be tab 5, Prosecution Exhibit P533.
23 So don't show the witness the whole document but please rip it
24 apart before so he only sees that specific exhibit. It's tab number 5,
25 P433. And that's an existing exhibit which is in evidence already.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Dixon.
2 MR. DIXON: I rise at this point simply to point out that, yes,
3 this document is an exhibit, but it is a document that is purportedly one
4 that comes from the 7th Brigade. So it's an internal document of that
5 brigade. And of course the witness must have a look at the document, but
6 it's highly unlikely, given his testimony earlier, that he would have seen
7 this document. He said he never had access to these kinds of documents.
8 And I just wish to put a marker down now that if in the
9 cross-examination my learned friend is going to seek to show the witness a
10 number of documents that he hasn't seen, in our submission it's going to
11 be a pointless exercise because he's not going to be able to give any
12 information about the content of these documents. Some of these have been
13 shown to witnesses before and they have been able to comment on them, and
14 certainly 7th Brigade documents will be shown to witnesses in the case for
15 Mr. Kubura, witnesses from the 7th Brigade who will be able to assist Your
16 Honours with the content of these documents, and in our submission that
17 would be the appropriate time for these to be looked at and not through a
18 witness who never had access to them.
19 Thank you Your Honours.
20 MR. WAESPI: Mr. President, if I may respond.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Prosecution.
22 MR. WAESPI: In all due respect to Mr. Dixon, this witness had
23 commented on a number of documents he has never seen of Mr. Hadzihasanovic
24 and was asked to comment, and I quote: "What is Hadzihasanovic doing with
25 this document?" That was the only connection, allegedly, he had. And
1 this witness now has said, yes, he has heard about Iranian instructors,
2 and I would like to show him the document and see whether that
3 corroborates the information his source has given him.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Wait a moment. I'm going to
5 give the floor to Mr. Bourgon, but in the French translation I heard
6 Iranian instructors, which he himself mentioned. I never heard from the
7 witness any spontaneous mention of Iranian instructors. It was you who
8 told him that there were Iranian instructors. But maybe the witness can
9 clarify before Mr. Bourgon takes the floor.
10 Colonel, there's a small problem. Reference was made to Iranian
11 instructors. Was it you who spontaneously mentioned Iranian instructors
12 or were you answering a question, a leading question, concerning the
13 possibility that the 3rd Corps had Iranian instructors? Could you clarify
14 this point.
15 THE WITNESS: Your Honours, I -- I said that my source told me
16 that the source thought there were Iranian members in the Mujahedin group
17 that the source met. I didn't say anything about instructors.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you're telling us that your
19 source said that among the Mujahedin there may have been Iranians, but
20 there was never any mention of instructors. That was my impression too.
21 The Prosecution. You have the floor.
22 MR. WAESPI: Yes. If the witness could be shown -- if the witness
23 could be shown the document, and perhaps it refreshes his recollection
24 what he -- what he has heard from this source --
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Bourgon, was this on this
1 point that you -- was it on this point that you wanted to intervene?
2 MR. BOURGON: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. President. The question
3 is the following: Indeed during the examination-in-chief, the witness did
4 use documents coming from the 3rd Corps, but before showing those
5 documents to the witness, I asked him if I showed him documents from the
6 3rd Corps but not from any sub-unit referring to an event that he was
7 involved in, would this witness be able to comment on that document, and
8 that is quite a different matter than to take a document following certain
9 answers of the witness. He already said that he knew nothing about the
10 7th Brigade, and he was shown a document apparently to refresh his memory.
11 But I think these are two different approaches, and it is not appropriate.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. What will you say now on
13 the part of the Prosecution? The debate is very simple. The Defence tell
14 us that they did show certain documents to the witness but solely from the
15 3rd Corps and not of any unit under the command of the 3rd Corps, and that
16 through the question that you put, you wanted, by showing him the
17 document, you wanted him to confirm that there were Iranian instructors,
18 whereas he himself never mentioned the existence of Iranian instructors.
19 Is that how you wish to proceed?
20 MR. WAESPI: Yes, Mr. President. Keep also in mind that this
21 witness volunteered the information that the Mujahedin, in assessment --
22 in his assessment, were not under the control of the 3rd Corps or the
23 ABiH, I don't know. And here we have a document which shows that Iranian
24 instructors indeed trained units of the 3rd Corps, and I would like to see
25 his comment whether he has anything to say about that, that it suggests
1 that there is more connection between Mujahedin and the 3rd Corps than he
2 has seen so far. It just shows how much knowledge there is on his part to
3 make his assessment. That's my only point.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Before giving the floor to
5 Mr. Dixon, could you give me the number of this document, the exhibit
6 number. What is the number of the document?
7 MR. WAESPI: Yes, Mr. President. It's P533. And the part I
8 wanted to discuss is very brief. It is on page 3 of the document. It's
9 tab 5 in the bundle. Tab number 5. P533. It's a report by a battalion
10 commander. 3rd Mountain Battalion commander, which was part of the 7th
11 Muslim Brigade of the 3rd Corps, and it dates 5 March 1993, a time the
12 witness was in the same area these units were operating.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Dixon, who is on his feet.
14 MR. DIXON: Thank you, Your Honours. Your Honour makes the point
15 that this witness hasn't mentioned anything about Iranian instructors in
16 his testimony, and therefore I fail to see how showing the witness this
17 document can refresh his memory in any way or allow him to comment on a
18 topic which he hadn't himself raised.
19 Your Honour, in addition to that, I also fail to see how this
20 particular document, which is an internal document of a particular
21 brigade, can in any way refresh this witness's memory about what he was
22 involved in at the time.
23 It's an entirely different story to show the witness his diary,
24 which he himself wrote, as a memory-refreshing document, or even his
25 statement, but a document of a brigade which he knows nothing about, as he
1 has already testified, can, in our submission, not be used to refresh his
3 It's a different question if my friend is trying to discredit the
4 witness and he seeks to put to the witness that he hasn't told the whole
5 truth by showing a document to him which indicates something different to
6 what the witness has already said, but he doesn't appear to be doing it on
7 that basis. Even on that basis we would have objections, because this is
8 not a document of the witness. But if it's purely for memory refreshing,
9 in our submission this document cannot enlighten the witness's memory in
10 any way if it's not a document which he had any connection with
12 Thank you, Your Honours.
13 MR. WAESPI: If I can respond, Mr. President. This is
14 cross-examination. The witness told us what his assessment was about
15 connections between Mujahedin and the 3rd Corps, and he used a source
16 which he doesn't want to disclose. I'm certainly allowed in
17 cross-examination to put a document to him and ask him whether that
18 changes his view or not. You can still say no. But, Your Honours, this
19 is cross-examination. I must be able to do that. And the Defence has not
20 only shown the diary and his statement to him, they showed him documents
21 he's never seen, whatever level -- third level unit, doesn't matter, and
22 ask him to make assessments like an analyst. But that was
23 examination-in-chief. I'm in cross-examination, Mr. President.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. We're going to
25 withdraw for a few minutes. Please don't move. We'll be back in a few
2 --- Break taken at 6.47 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 6.49 p.m.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Chamber, after deliberating
5 on the question whether the Prosecution can show Exhibit P533 to the
6 witness, the Chamber is of the opinion that within the framework of the
7 cross-examination, the Prosecution may check with the witness the effect
8 of a previous statement in view of the fact that the witness said some
9 time ago - that is today - that the Mujahedin were not under the control
10 of the 3rd Corps.
11 The Prosecution wishes either to refresh the memory of the witness
12 or to test the credibility of the witness by showing him this document to
13 hear the opinion of the witness, either whether he stands by his assertion
14 or whether he might modify his previous statement. In view of this, the
15 Chamber is of the opinion that the Prosecution has the right to show this
16 document to the witness and to get from the witness his opinion regarding
17 the question put to him by the Prosecution, which has to do with an
18 allegation in the indictment. And in view of all this, you may show --
19 submit this document and ask the witness for his opinion about one or
20 several paragraphs in that document.
21 So please proceed.
22 MR. WAESPI: Thank you very much, Mr. President.
23 Q. Witness, do you have the document in front of you?
24 A. I have.
25 Q. If you just could first look at the first page. It appears to be
1 a report on the 3rd MM Bat's work and implementation of tasks, and it's
2 signed by the 3rd Mountain Battalion commander. That's what's the -- is
3 that correct? Can you see that?
4 A. Are you asking me?
5 Q. Yes.
6 A. Forgive me. Well, it seems to have a signature block at the
7 bottom, the 3rd Mountain Battalion, yes.
8 Q. And on top and left you can also see that it has the stamp of the
9 Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 3rd Corps and 7th Muslim Brigade.
10 A. Yes, I can.
11 Q. Now, just turning to the third page on top. Here he talks about
12 -- the commander talks about, you know, his unit, and one of the aspects
13 is the level of training and readiness. And here you can see, and I'll
14 read it out: "As regards the level of training and readiness of unit
15 members, on March 1993 they completed training with Iranian instructors."
16 And then the topics addressed: Fire instructions, engineer training,
17 observation and reconnaissance, clearing the terrain, inhabited areas,
18 ambushes, and so on and so on.
19 Now, I take it you have not been aware of this type of
21 A. I don't think so.
22 Q. Your source hasn't informed you about the -- that Iranian
23 instructors were indeed training members of the 7th Muslim Brigade?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Thank you very much. We can take this exhibit away.
1 A. Could I just make one comment?
2 Iranian instructors does not mean Mujahedin necessarily. There
3 were many people in Central Bosnia who were working independently. For
4 example, Danes, Germans. I just mention some Europeans. South Africans.
5 So it's possible, quite possible. It doesn't say Mujahedin at this point.
6 Q. That's fine. Yes.
7 A. I'm sorry to mention that, but I just didn't want you to think
8 that I thought they were necessarily Mujahedin.
9 Q. Yes. That's fine, and that's just the first document I'm going to
10 show you. There will be others which will be more detailed.
11 MR. WAESPI: Perhaps, Mr. President, to finish today's session is
12 the source. I understand from Mr. Mundis that in this Trial Chamber the
13 practice has been that a witness needs to disclose his or her source, and
14 that can certainly be done in private session, indeed in closed session.
15 And since I joined the trial a little bit later, I'm not entirely familiar
16 with that procedure. Perhaps Mr. Mundis can speak to it. But I believe
17 it will be important for Your Honours to assess the source and indeed hear
18 about it, because otherwise I think you have ruled in one instance that
19 the information, which is hearsay, should be disregarded if the witness,
20 for whatever good reasons, can't or doesn't want to disclose the source.
21 So I would seek your direction on this point, Mr. President.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I shall give the floor to the
23 Defence in a moment.
24 At this stage, the Prosecution is telling us that we have a
25 witness referring to a source, and he doesn't tell us the name or the
1 origin or the position of that witness. The Prosecution is of the opinion
2 that the witness, who is before us today, should clarify what he says by,
3 if necessary, disclosing the source, and Mr. Waespi tells us, in line 25
4 of page 92, that Mr. Mundis can speak to this point in greater detail.
5 Mr. Mundis, do you wish to intervene regarding the question of
6 source or not?
7 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. I simply recall this came
8 up late in the direct examination of the witness, and during the last
9 break we made some efforts to check. Unfortunately, the judicial database
10 is down. I don't recall if it was written decision or an oral decision of
11 the Trial Chamber, but I seem to recall early on a decision was taken with
12 respect to hearsay evidence and it was actually on a motion made by the
13 Defence, and the Chamber's view was that hearsay evidence of course is
14 admissible before this Tribunal and this Chamber, but that the source of
15 that hearsay needs to be revealed in order for the Trial Chamber to give
16 that hearsay evidence -- to analyse or give whatever weight may be
17 afforded to the hearsay evidence, and unfortunately, due to the late hour
18 I'm unable -- and the fact that the judicial database is down today for
19 maintenance, I'm unable to come up with the precise ruling, but I do seem
20 to recall that during the Prosecution case, and very early on in the
21 Prosecution case upon a motion made by the Defence concerning hearsay, the
22 Trial Chamber's view was that hearsay is admissible but we need to know
23 who it is that told the witness, that is the source of the hearsay
24 information. And our view with respect to this witness, who has declined
25 to provide that, is we would ask to go into private or closed session and
1 ask the witness some questions concerning the source of that information.
2 Otherwise, our view would be that evidence is inadmissible and/or needs to
3 be disregarded by the Trial Chamber, because we simply don't know who the
4 source is or what the source is and we are unable to give any further
5 submissions or to challenge that evidence in any way, and of course our
6 view would be if the situation were the reverse and I were to bring in
7 witnesses who had a source that were not to be revealed saying the
8 Mujahedin were under the control of the accused, that would clearly not be
9 admissible unless we identified the source of that information, and of
10 course we believe that both parties, under the equality of arms principle,
11 need to know the source of any hearsay evidence. It's not a question of
12 the weight to be given, it's a question of whether that evidence can even
13 come in unless we know who the source is.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I shall give the floor to the
15 Defence, but before I do that, I'm going to ask the registrar that we go
16 into private session.
17 [Private session]
11 Page 15228 redacted. Private session.
11 Page 15229 redacted. Private session.
25 [Open session]
1 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] We are in open session,
2 Mr. President.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It is now eight minutes past
4 seven. We have overstepped the time limit for the hearing by almost eight
5 minutes. The hearing will be resumed tomorrow at 9.00 sharp.
6 Colonel, in the meantime you should not have any contact with
7 anyone, because having taken the solemn declaration, you're now a witness
8 of justice. And make sure that you are here tomorrow at 9.00.
9 So I will see you all again tomorrow morning when the Chamber will
10 have a ruling ready for you.
11 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.08 p.m.,
12 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 1st day of
13 February, 2005, at 9.00 a.m.